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V never understood how most people viewed Jumin.

Maybe growing up alongside Jumin was a part of it. He always got to see the little parts of Jumin no one else saw. How Jumin would let just the tiniest bit of emotion show at frustration, how smug he looked at finally one-upping V, and how he forced his emotions down and claimed they were useless, though others (wrongly) argued Jumin lacked them.

Jumin was severely misunderstood, and therefore, had no one to relate to. It was why he turned to drinking to quell his problems, why he appeared so closed off to begin with, and why he was able to shut off his emotions in favor of taking the logical step forward.

It made V feel bad sometimes. He wished he could’ve done more for Jumin, but he could hardly help himself, let alone Saeran, Rika or him. Things were out of his hands. But V could see how Jumin let his guard down around V, let V in, if no one else.

In the same way, V could only open up to Jumin. The others understood how bad Rika had been, but V only trusted Jumin with the entire truth. How stupid and useless he had been when Rika took in Saeran and drugged — no, abused — him, and how V ran headfirst into any problem with no self-preservation, long as everyone else was fine. V didn’t like involving people in conflict. It was his problem, and therefore, his to solve, but Jumin never really agreed with that.

Jumin preferred the practical way of things. If he was able to provide aid, he would, no matter if it burdened him (or others, poor Jaehee). Even if the truth would wound the RFA, Jumin would be the one to squash his emotions to take reign of the group to keep everyone under control in V’s absence. If there was anything V was grateful for, it was for having such a reliable friend.

If anything ever were to happen to V, he knew Jumin would keep things stable. Even if Jumin broke off the RFA, just knowing Jumin was there to tie up any loose ends was good enough.

V appreciated Jumin on a deeper level than just trust and respect. V wasn’t sure if there was a word for it, he just felt... connected to Jumin, like an invisible string tethered the two of them and granted each other access into the other’s deepest, darkest, most innermost thoughts. V was tempted to slowly unravel and pick at Jumin’s brain until it was completely unwound, laid bare for V and V only to soak in. So only he could be the one to understand Jumin to the fullest.

It was selfish of V, he knew. The last thing he wanted was to put himself first, or make an awful mistake like he had when ‘loving’ Rika. Still, he couldn’t help the way his idle mind always drifted to Jumin, how his eyes always ached to study each curve and sharp angle of that beautiful face and recreate it on paper. His fingers twitched to touch it, to just once caress Jumin with the gentle touch he deserved (in theory, for Jumin was hardly gentle).

The two were similar in many ways. V was once as closed off as Jumin, though more callous and irritable. V had his mother to help open his eyes to the true beauty the world had to offer, to unveil his inner artist, but Jumin was a born business man. Unlike V, leading the company was where Jumin belonged. Even so, the two of them both held that same stubborn streak. That same ability to read and understand each other in ways no one else ever had. The same, carnal desire to make something theirs by whatever method suited them (V’s being forever capturing it by artistic means, and Jumin by closing off the possession so he and only he alone had access to it.)

V never thought he’d have such selfish thoughts towards Jumin, but even sitting next to him and idly chatting about whatever topic came to mind, a glass of wine in hand, all V wanted to do was to show Jumin just how much he longed for his attention, for his approval, along with something... more. V wanted to be vulnerable around Jumin, he wanted Jumin to know his deepest darkest secrets, regrets, and desires (if he didn’t already).

His pain, his yearning... V wanted nothing more than to express it to Jumin in this very moment. The alcohol in his system could also have a play in such thoughts, but it didn’t change the fact that V had wanted to deeply connect with Jumin a long time ago. Ever since he was a child he wanted to open up to Jumin. Ever since his eyes were treated and he was met with Jumin’s calm, even happy smile, V knew these feelings bubbling deep inside him would become something more.

“There are some born with the art, and some not. Attempting to learn an innate talent you don’t possess is pointless, don’t you think?” Jumin’s cool, deep voice filled the otherwise silent room at he brought his wine glass to his lips. The voice felt like home to V, familiar, comforting.

It was nothing like Rika’s. Her voice was like a warm summer’s day. Bright, gentle, but always just a little too intense for V to be comfortable. His sole goal was showering Rika in a brilliant light despite her desires. He had wanted merely something to ‘love’, something to devote himself completely and utterly to. The result was nothing short of tragic, resulting in trauma, therapy sessions, and a firm court decision. Everyone had coped in one way or another, not all methods healthy, especially Jumin’s.

It was why V wanted to quell that habit. He felt partially responsible. But unlike with Rika, he had no desire to obsess over Jumin. (...That was a lie, but he wouldn’t actually do it. Hopefully.) He wanted to be a source of comfort, of familiarity, to Jumin. He didn’t want to be his radiating sun, nor did he want to be a person who would offer everything and proclaim his love no matter the circumstances. What he wanted to be for Jumin was... a friend. A true friend. A confidant, a trusted equal. Someone Jumin can truly rely on.

Jumin already filled that role for V.

“Being able to see the true depth of objects and models requires... something like that. But a child is more than capable of focusing a camera and taking a clear shot,” V put his glass on the table, a teasing smile adjourning his lips. Jumin’s brows furrowed at the response, eyes flickering to V, who felt conflicted under the cold stare. A mix of nerves and excitement, he was sure.

“...I’d argue, but you’re the photographer. I’ll concede that I’m just... unteachable in the arts.” Jumin’s breath came out in a gentle exhale and he leaned towards the table, prepared to pour another glass. V caught Jumin’s hand, giving Jumin a hard look.

“You already had a bottle before I came. I think that’s enough for one night.” V knew Jumin would dislike V cutting him off, but Jumin was always a calm drunk, if not sentimental. He’d give in fairly easily. Jumin looked irritated at V’s words, but pulled back after an intense staring session where V refused to back down.

“Usually I‘d be the more sensible of the two of us, the one to stop you from making rash decisions. Though you still flew off when given the chance.” Jumin’s words were coarse, a hint of edge to them. Just a bit of his stoic facade cracking.

“I can’t stay in one place. You know that. The sights, sounds, experiences... you don’t realize how vast the world is until you see it for yourself.” V’s harsh look melted into a wistful smile, his body relaxing as he recalled his travels. America, Italy, Australia, Russia, Japan... The pictures and sights he managed to capture during his experience were things he wouldn’t trade for the world.

“I know. But if I had it my way, I’d keep you right here. Where you couldn’t leave.” The words were so quiet, V was convinced he had hallucinated them. But the calm, aggravated look on Jumin’s face spoke otherwise.

Jumin had to understand that V would take that a certain way, them both being men damned. Jumin, while occasionally dense, wasn’t an idiot. He had to be aware of the subtle, somewhat romantic implications.

“That wouldn’t be good for either of us. But I do want to spend more time with you. I’m sorry its been so long since I’ve visited.” V’s been gone from home for so long, he never realized just how much it could affect others. The only time he stayed in one place was with Rika, but even then... he felt like a bird trapped in a cage. They both hindered each other, bringing out the best and worst in them. Whether V regretted that relationship or not was still up in the air.

Currently, he wished to continue his travels, but he also firmly decided from then on out to make more time for friends and family. He hadn’t seen his father in forever, let alone step-sister or step-mother. Even if they didn’t get along well, V wanted to make an effort.

“Six months and three days. Most people see their closest friends on a more regular basis.” Jumin named the number off the top of his head, though V had no way to determine whether the number was true or not. With Jumin, V had no doubt that the number was perfectly accurate.

“That’s true. It’s been that long, has it? I’ll try to stop by more often.” V’s eyes studied Jumin, who seemed to study him right back. It was near impossible to read Jumin when Jumin was trying to do the same to V. His deep, ensnaring eyes were narrowed as they regarded V in scrutiny. It became increasingly difficult to keep Jumin’s gaze when self-consciousness and embarrassment began gnawing away at him.

“You...” Jumin’s eyebrows furrowed as he scooted closer to V on the couch, angling V’s face with a gentle hand. The sudden movement almost made V jerk back in shock, but he forced himself to sit still as Jumin analyzed him.

“The name Mint Eye never made sense. Your eyes and hair, they’re... more turquoise. Cyan? Maybe not. Did she ever study your eyes? Your hair? Eyelashes? Did she just have poor color perception? She knew you so well, she should know the color of your eyes.” Jumin spoke his musings aloud as he ran a thumb right under V’s eye like it were the most natural thing in the world. V wasn’t sure whether to be frozen with shock or burning with embarrassment. His body managed to do both.

“I don’t know. She focused more on my entire image than my eyes, um... Maybe it was based off of Saeran? No, he had to have yellow eyes then... um..” If V moved, then it seemed like he didn’t want Jumin to touch him. But with Jumin’s hands on him, his brain was a complete, muddled mess. Just a simple touch form Jumin was enough to make his heart go haywire.

“She tried to dull these eyes. She hurt you twice, physically. ...I could never forgive her for that. Even if it’s Rika.” Jumin seemed to choke out the name he’d been avoiding, but the words made V oddly happy. Even if Jumin was talking about his former fiancé.

“I don’t deserve your care.” V laughed, although the deep pain sated in his heart made it clear that there was a truth to his words. He’s been trying to get better at accepting help and not always solely blaming himself, but that didn’t shake the underlying dread that he never deserved any of it. After what he’s done? He deserved a jail sentence just as much as Rika.

“You don’t get to decide on who I do or don’t care about. If I decide to care about you, I will. I do. You’re my friend, V. Of course I care.” Jumin spoke the words so calmly and sternly, V had to look away. His cheeks were probably hot to the touch, but Jumin looked so certain of his words, like they were fact. V still didn’t think he deserved it, but it felt nice to hear. Really nice. Even if it meant he could hardly stammer out a response.

“I will too. Do too. I mean... I care about you too.” V’s voice trembled, and he couldn’t even bring himself to meet Jumin’s eyes, but he managed to get the words out clearly.

It was odd how different this was from his usual experiences. Normally he was so self-assured, confident. He... was good at face-to-face communication. At flirting, even. But when Jumin approached him like this, he turned bright red like some inexperienced school boy.

“Good. I’d like this to be mutual, if you will.” Jumin had put his hand down long ago, but they were still close enough to touch. The immediate proximity made his heart flutter in ways V never thought possible.

“You make it sound as if we’re lovers.” V spoke the words as a joke, a joke he meant to laugh off. But Jumin just stared at him, completely silent. The lack of sound made everything else stick out so much more, even to the quietest snores from Elizabeth III in the corner of the room.

Unable to stand the silence any longer, V moved his eyes to meet Jumin’s, almost immediately crumbling under the gaze. V did his best to keep his eyes up, until Jumin broke the heated silence.

“...Interesting.” It was nothing but a single word, but the way Jumin articulated it, the way it slid off his tongue... V shook his head and stood up, his hair (it was pretty long by now) brushing against his ears. If he stayed any longer, he was sure he wouldn’t even be able to hold a simple conversation. Mumbling some pitiful excuse for the bathroom, he slipped away to the bathroom and shut the door.

His appearance was flushed in the mirror. His chin length hair was enough to hide the red tips of his ears, but did nothing to fan his cheeks. It made for a funny sight, the way the rose from his skin clashed against the blue, watery hues from his hair. He’s letting himself get too far gone.

He didn’t have to blush. He didn’t have to be so aware of Jumin. He just needed to treat Jumin as he always had, like a close friend and nothing more.

When these feelings would continue to poke their little heads out, it only made it more difficult. Not painful, like most would claim. Jumin was anything but painful. His presence was soothing.

It just felt... uncomfortable. He felt confused. It made him conflicted. He should save himself the trouble and rid himself of these feelings.

Ah, Jumin would get worried. He should return. His cheeks were less flushed, and he looked more or less normal. Satisfied with his appearance, he returned to the living room, where Jumin looked busy on his phone. Spotting V, he slipped it back into his pocket.

“You’re back.” Jumin commented, while V took a seat beside him. No closer or farther than usual, but V just felt so, so aware of Jumin... He wanted to look at him more.

“Yeah. Um...” V was prepared to let Jumin fall into his own topic until V’s eyes moved to the corner aquarium. He always enjoyed it, seeing all the fish swim freely, without a care. A life V could only long for. Jumin was very careful, hiring a professional to be sure the fish were taken care of properly, and that they could all coexist in harmony. “You got a few more fish.”

“Yes. While you were gone I thought the tank could use a little more. The fish are all fine together, of course.” Jumin responded, his deep eyes watching the fish tank, a glimmer reflecting in them. Jumin’s side profile was really beautiful. There was no question as to why so many companies wanted him to model.

“I know. You always put care into everything. Even the smallest of details.” That’s what I like about you. V smiled, his eyes no longer admiring the tank and instead entirely taken by Jumin. He returned V’s gaze once he finished looking at the tank, pausing for a minute before speaking.

“Jihyun.”

V instantly froze. It was like the whole world went silent. He expected a lot of responses, but never would he have guessed that.

It... it wasn’t like he didn’t like his name, he was just so unused to hearing it these days. It helped to carry a firm distinction between his past life and his current one. But when Jumin uttered it, all those barriers came crumbling down. Past, present, future, whatever Jumin called him... V had no problem with it. He was fine with Jumin knowing everything about him. Even if that desire only remained lit somewhere hidden in the depths of his heart, it was enough to just acknowledge what he truly wanted for himself and no one else. His silent, selfish desire.

“You haven’t called me that for a while.” V’s eyes travelled from the floor to the aquarium again, keeping his face blank as to not reveal any emotion.

“You didn’t look like you wanted me to.” Jumin’s response was simple yet effective. It... was true. At the time, he preferred being called V. His pseudonym was more comfortable, and felt less like someone was probing at his embarrassing, regretful past.

“...I didn’t.” It wasn’t so bad when Jumin used his name, though. It felt uncomfortable, but in turn, was more familiar and sentimental.

“Hm. Is the aquarium that interesting? Is that why you won’t look at me?” Jumin‘s voice fell flat, the question somehow dangerous. The lack of rise at the end, the way his voice was even more monotone than usual... It was gruff.

“Sorry.” V hastily apologized, but Jumin caught V’s wrist with a gentle hand after V turned his entire body away and squeezed to gather V’s attention. V finally made himself meet Jumin’s eyes, those hard, searching, eyes that could — and would — shatter V into pieces.

“I didn’t ask for an apology, I asked for an answer.” Jumin’s refusal to let go and the way his thumb caressed the inside of V’s wrist so achingly tender made it hard to respond coherently.

“I... um... I just... It’s pretty, yes.” That was all V could muster, feeling his cheeks grow hot all over again as he looked away in pure embarrassment and humiliation. V wasn’t used to being this ineloquent. That didn’t make any sense, whatsoever. He was supposed to be good at this kind of thing, or at least, much better than Jumin, who somehow had the upper-hand despite that. Although in this case, V was sure Jumin was looking to tease, as he tapped V to gather his attention once more.

“V. I’ve known you long enough to know when you’re lying. This is the first time I’ve ever seen you get so flustered.” Jumin observed, like this kind of talk wouldn’t make V burn with shame. He knew he was a mess, Jumin didn’t have to bring attention to it. Did he want to tease him? Jumin was doing a good job at it.

“...This is the first time I’ve ever been so flustered.” V removed his wrist from Jumin’s grasp and instead let his hands settle in his lap. It was bad for Jumin to mess with his emotions while he was still battling them out. He’d love to pursue Jumin, he truly would, but with their relationship, compromising it just couldn’t be an option. How could V ever lose his closest friend on the whims of fleeting emotions?

“And why do you think that is?” Jumin asked calmly, like this were a therapy session. V didn’t have much to say. He already dumped all of his baggage into Jumin, who kindly listened without fail, and chimed in when necessary. V couldn’t answer this specific question without giving himself away.

Jumin was smart, trying to work an answer out of V like this. But V knew all of Jumin’s methods. V wouldn’t budge. Neither would Jumin. Until one of them gave in, this stalemate would last. Like so many times before. It happened even in V’s absence, where V had to give in first and reach out to Jumin, despite having left himself.

V wished he had been there. Maybe he could’ve help nipped Jumin’s drinking problem in the bud. Or maybe he’d share the same problem, but at least they’d be in it together.

He would’ve been right where Jumin wanted him. Sticking around from time to time wasn’t so bad, of course. V would be lying to himself if he claimed he didn’t wish to have Jumin around often. He’d love to travel with Jumin and see the world, if only it didn’t interfere with Jumin’s work and personal life.

“I’m not sure, maybe you can tell me.” V laughed, something that sounded painfully weak to his own ears. He mustered the courage to look at Jumin, to truly look at him from their close proximity on the couch. From this distance, V could see every detail of Jumin’s face. Every single detail from his soft hair to his pursed lips. V knew that Jumin knew he was handsome, but V still wanted to repeat it infinitely until Jumin knew just how much of an effect he had on V.

“I don’t think so. That’s a question you have to answer for yourself. I’d like to know when you find it. Even if the explanation is a little... philosophical for my tastes.” Jumin spoke quietly, and V could laugh, because Jumin was always like that. Practical, straightforward. He liked explaining things as they were, rather than using metaphors. But that was the beauty of art, wasn’t it? To be able to use one thing to describe another in perfect detail.

“I’ll explain one day. If you’ll listen.” V was pretty sure he had stared at Jumin too long at this point, but Jumin was staring too, so neither of them acknowledged the awkwardness in favor of the comfortable company. Well, somewhat comfortable. When V’s eyes decided to trail to Jumin’s lips before looking away hurriedly, he knew he had lost. Jumin surely saw. But it only made V wonder...

Could he? Could he truly bring himself to risk the lifelong friendship they had for a shot at possibly non-existent romance? Jumin was possessive, he appreciated when things were in his reach. V was always just a little too out of reach, too far for Jumin to ever truly grasp. Whenever V got close enough, V would slip right out of his hands before Jumin could capture him. V himself had quelled his need to completely devote and obsess over another human being for his sake of self-worth, but he still wanted to give Jumin everything he wanted. And there was no evidence Jumin had grown out of his possessive phase. V knew no one would be happy that way. It would only be a matter of time.

And that was if Jumin were even willing to accept him. Who was to say Jumin was interested in guys? Or anyone at all? V wouldn’t be surprised if Jumin harbored no romantic (or even sexual) feelings towards anyone, ever. Jumin never expressed interest in girls, guys, or anyone, really. At a point, he toyed with the idea of romance (in a practical, rather than emotional manner), but his father’s actions quickly made Jumin cease all talk about the subject altogether.

But even with everything that could go wrong...

Completely, horribly wrong...

V still wanted to try.

He wanted so badly to try. He knew how bad of an idea it was. They were both still healing. Jumin’s wounds were still fresh, and V never truly delved into his own. What if they completely destroyed rather than healed each other? What if their relationship brought about suffering instead? How could V ever do that to Jumin?

But... what if it didn’t? The small voice in his head cried out to just let go, to see where things led in this moment. If things went really bad, V could blame it on the alcohol, and he knew Jumin would be kind enough to never speak of it again. But if things didn’t, then...

Should V bet on it? His entire life, he’s made awful decision after awful decision. This could be no different. Or it could be completely different. There was really no way to know.

V had no clue how things would turn out. But he was willing to find out. Even if it destroyed him.

So, following his impulse before he lost resolve, V pulled Jumin to him and leaned forward, gently meeting Jumin’s lips. They were warm, soft and slightly moist with a hint of wine. V was afraid to do any more, to push to the point of where he made Jumin uncomfortable, but with their bodies so close together and Jumin’s scent overpowering his ends of reason, he couldn’t bring himself to pull away. Not yet. No words had to be spoken. V didn’t think he’d manage to be too eloquent anyway. Surely, Jumin got the message from this simple act. V kept his eyes partially open, so he could study Jumin’s expression. Jumin’s eyes widened in surprise for all but a second before they fell shut and he put a hand to V’s cheek, and V felt a pressure to his lips, while they moved confidently against his and V followed suit without hesitation.

...Jumin returned the kiss.

“Jumin...” His name left V’s lips as he pulled away from the kiss unable to help his smile. Jumin had kissed him back without question. He didn’t freeze up, or even pull away. He returned the kiss so surely it gave V butterflies. Did this mean that Jumin liked him too? That his little gamble was worth every cent?

“You’re good at this.” Jumin’s voice reached V’s now beet red ears as his fingers danced over the contours of V’s face. “So this is why you were so flustered.” He chuckled, burying his fingers into V’s hair.

“I suppose. Looks like you ended up telling me after all.” V grinned, just a little on the cheeky side. It was rare he ever tried to get under Jumin’s skin, but he was riding on a high right now. He doubted anything could bring it down.

“Only after you pushed yourself to find the answer.” Without giving V a moment to spare, Jumin pulled V into a kiss that made his head spin. It was nothing like their first kiss, gentle and sweet. This one was much more carnal, raw with passion. Jumin’s lips moved insistently against V’s. The way he went in before pulling back to nip at V’s lips then going in once more had V clutching Jumin’s coat. His tongue probed stubbornly at V’s lips even while V was still trying to adjust to the sudden change in pace. It was entirely like Jumin, and V almost wanted to smile at the predictability while he opened his lips and let Jumin’s hot tongue run over his own, enough to make his fingers upon Jumin’s face tremble. Jumin tugged at V’s hair, drawing out a gasp, and V felt his body ache at the attempt to hold both of them up.

After a small push to his chest, V let himself relax and fall with a bounce onto the couch, Jumin’s hair falling down to tickle his cheeks. Jumin... V was so intrigued. This was both something V could guess, and something V would have never imagined in his wildest dreams. Most of the time, he wouldn’t even dare to let himself think this way about Jumin, and now... they...

V felt so warm. So blissfully warm. Jumin’s body hovering over his just added to the tingly warmth that ran all the way from the hairs on his head to the tips of his toes. It was exhilarating.

“Jumin...” V whispered breathlessly, moving his fingers to trail Jumin’s flushed cheeks, then his wet lips. Jumin darted out his tongue and licked at the finger, eyes like V’s never seen before.

“Jihyun.” He answered, and V had no complaints. Jumin caught V’s eyes and stared wordlessly, an unspoken agreement passing through them. No more words. They weren’t necessary. Nodding, Jumin moved down to kiss at V’s cheeks, then trail his lips roughly down his jawline, nipping recklessly at his neck. V took in a deep breath, trying not to tremble each time Jumin left another sting and mark

He failed miserably, and found himself whispering quiet words of agreement while Jumin made a mess of his skin. So rough, so raw, but V knew that was one way Jumin expressed his care, his desire. V was more for the slow, sensual, emotional moments, sex included, but he enjoyed this a lot. With each rough suck and kiss, Jumin would return to the area with gentle pecks to sooth the ache he left. V enjoyed it more than he’d like to admit, and Jumin picked up on it quickly, the harder bites making V jolt.

“Ah-“ V instantly clamped his mouth shut, but he let out a sound in momentary shock when Jumin forced his knee between V’s legs. It snuck up higher and higher until it was moving against V, and he let out a strangled gasp, moving his hands from Jumin’s shirt, straight to his pants to quickly undo the buttons. Jumin caught on and did the same, working to free V from his pants and boxers, where he was so hard it was almost painful. He wanted Jumin to touch him. Even more, he wanted to touch Jumin, to get even closer to him.

And finally, he had Jumin in his hand, who took in a deep, slow breath, tensing when V gave him a small squeeze and started to move his hand in slow, heavy strokes.

But Jumin wouldn’t just let V tease him, much as he’d like to try. No, he grabbed V’s hand and pinned it to the couch, his other hand finding V’s cheek. He pecked the corner of V’s lips while he fit their hips together, so they could rut deliciously against each other. V sighed and moved against Jumin, slow and experimental, trying to gauge what Jumin would want. Jumin grit his teeth and looked unsatisfied, growling and capturing V in another kiss while he began to grind ruthlessly.

“Oh my—“ Yeah, this worked too. Jumin’s mouth swallowed whatever sounds V would have cried out, while V moved against Jumin at the same rough pace, squirming under Jumin’s fingers that explored his body by hiking up his shirt, touch sometimes light, other times crushing and bruising. Jumin had to hold him in place in fear of V moving enough to fall off the couch (they really should’ve moved to the bedroom), but Jumin would just continue and continue to tease him with his fingers at his hips, his chest. V nearly let out some kind of whine and arched his back when Jumin slowed to roll his hips in a circle, like Jumin’s fingers and quick speed weren’t already making him fall apart.

Jumin licked V’s bottom lip before he moved to nip at his collarbone, lips eagerly exploring where he could comfortably reach. V dreaded to think how bruised his skin would look after this encounter.

“What’re you thinking about? Focus on me, nothing else.” Jumin mumbled against V’s lips, moving his hand down to stroke them together and make V buck into his hand. V’s breaths were shaky and disoriented and his voice came out in broken gasps but Jumin would still move against him mercilessly and challenge V each time he tried to keep up the pace.

“You’re the only thing I can focus on, Jumin.” V laughed, but it was hard manage with his face falling into pleasure, their pace so rough V feared they would break the couch (seriously, why didn’t they move?) Jumin bit at his neck, and moved another hand back to V’s hair. He gave it a harsh tug and V cried out, the pain that morphed into pleasure all too much. He came intensely, falling into a quivering mess while taking ragged breaths. Jumin followed suit after a few more strokes, groaning before he let himself relax and card his fingers through V’s hair.

“Don’t give me that look.” V teased, smiling while Jumin observed him with red cheeks and heavy, heavy breaths. He looked incredibly aroused and satisfied, but there was that glint of something more. Something mildly possessive. Like Jumin wanted to own him.

“Hard not to when you give in so easily. Don’t give me ideas. This is difficult enough as it is.” Jumin grumbled, bringing a hand to his head. V laughed and fixed up his pants. Just a little sticky.

“I’m sorry. But I do care for you. I care about you so much, Jumin. I can’t be yours, but I want to be yours in other ways.” V explained, pulling Jumin’s face close to his. “Your friend.” He kissed Jumin’s forehead. “Your colleague.” His cheek. “Your partner.” His lips. “Jumin... You know that I love you, don’t you? Your companionship means everything to me. You mean everything to me.”

“...I understand you better than anyone, Jihyun. Of course I know.” Jumin moved his lips to V’s ear, softly biting at his earlobe. “I care for you as well. Love, as you would put it.”

“Haha, finally...” V’s breath hitched, and he kissed Jumin’s jawline in retaliation. When Jumin grinded down, V yielded with a choked groan.

“That should be my line. I’m the one who watched you get engaged.” Jumin griped, burying his face in V’s neck. Occasionally he would stick his tongue out to taste it, slick with sweat.

“Y-You liked me for that long? I didn’t realize...” V looked away hastily, swallowing his panic. Jumin had been attracted to him for so long, and V never noticed? Wow. ...Things probably would’ve gone a lot better had he realized his feelings for Jumin back then and acted upon them.

“Of course you didn’t. You can be surprisingly dense at times, Jihyun.” Jumin wrapped an arm around his waist. “It’s fine. I get to have you from now on.”

“Oh. Right...” V ran his fingers through Jumin’s hair. Sometimes he felt like he didn’t deserve to love. Sometimes he even felt like he shouldn’t be loved. But his body still basked in the glow, he still felt so, so thrilled at Jumin returning his feelings. “I love you, Jumin. I love you so much. I love you. I love you...” V’s voice sounded desperate, for if he didn’t whisper it enough, he wasn’t sure if Jumin would understand the extent of V’s feelings for him. Just how intense his emotions were.

“We’ve only just gotten together, but you’re repeating it a lot.” Jumin sighed, lifting his head and looking at V. “I know. Our relationship falls deeper. Love isn’t enough to describe it.”

“I don’t think anything can. But love is the closest thing I can think of.” A deep understanding, an everlasting love. Not one that burned like the sun, not obsessive or possessive, just a mix of complete trust, faith, and adoration. Jumin was an amazing man. V was so glad he was the one who got to be with him from now on.

“I see. Love. We’re lovers.” Jumin gave V a soft smile that was nothing short of kind and affectionate. V never thought he’d see the day. “Jihyun...” Jumin delicately ran his fingers through V’s hair. “You’re beautiful.”

“I think you’re much more beautiful than I am.” V chuckled, but he happily leaned into Jumin’s touch. Yeah, Jumin was really beautiful, inside and out. Maybe it sounded weird and others wouldn’t understand, but V knew Jumin better than anyone. He knew just how sweet, helpful, and capable Jumin was. He had every reason to adore and respect Jumin, to love him more than anyone.

“Then we’ll have to come to a disagreement.” Jumin sighed, moving his hands slowly and languidly beneath V’s shirt, casually, like he wanted nothing more than to just caress his bare skin while they talked. It felt amazing.

“Guess so.” V beamed, tugging Jumin down to give him a long, slow and sweet kiss.

V never thought he’d actually get to start a relationship with Jumin. He would sooner disregard these feelings than acknowledge them and risk their friendship, but he did anyway. It was a huge gamble, but it paid off more than V ever thought possible.

V loved Jumin. Jihyun loved Jumin. V... Jihyun would be with Jumin from now on. And together, the two of them could grow and heal. Instead of hurting each other, they’ll become stronger together. And their relationship will blossom beautifully. That, Jihyun was sure of.

And Jihyun would enjoy every second of it.