Namjoon had discovered that he was a little two, almost three entire years ago and he had managed to hide it up until now, so he was going to be absolutely pissed if he exposed himself after all this time, all because of a god damn prank.
“What...The fuck?” He frowned, his eyes wide as he looked around his room quickly, holding his breath for a few seconds and then releasing it in an attempt to calm himself down.
“It’s adorable, isn’t it?” Jin smirked as he gestured around the room. “I thought since you love pink so much, you might enjoy having your room decked out in it. You’re welcome.”
Namjoon loves when they have free time. He loves when they get to catch a break. He loves when they get to have a week or two off work and all to themselves. But he also kinda fucking hates it because when the seven of them are left with too much free time, things like this happen.
Namjoon’s room was covered in pink from the ceiling to the floor. Pink tapestries hanging on the wall, pink sheets covering the floor, pink balloons filling the room as well. Worst of all, however, we’re the soft, pink pillows and the adorable pink plushies sitting all along the floor and the bed.
This was all because Namjoon had been making fun of Jin during the last photoshoot they had before their break. Jin had been wearing all pink for the photoshoot, and that included a pretty pink skirt.
“It’s a fashion statement!” One of the staff had smiled brightly as she helped him adjust the long skirt. “And you’re really pulling the look off well! Don’t be so grumpy!”
Jin didn’t mind wearing pink but he didn’t enjoy wearing the skirt. It’s not really even because it was a skirt, it was just the fact that that particular skirt had been itchy and uncomfortable as all hell. And it was very long, only his ankles showing. He felt like he was some housewife in the 1800s or something and he hated it.
Anyways, the boys had had plenty of fun making fun of him for his unfortunate outfit and Namjoon in particular had focused on teasing him about the fact that they’d dressed him in an unholy amount of pink. Pink shirt, skirt, shoes, jewelry, makeup, hair. It looked like someone had barfed the color pink all over him. It was horrendous.
Namjoon had gotten on Jin’s absolute last nerve with his teasing and Jin had vowed to get him back for it eventually. And that’s why, while Namjoon was out of the house earlier, he’d taken the time to decorate his room in all pink.
Namjoon would usually be able to laugh such a prank off easily. Sure, he might be a little annoyed at it, but he’d have to admit that it was a good prank and he kinda deserved it, considering he’d spent hours laughing at Jin’s pretty pink misfortune during their photoshoot. But today…
He couldn’t laugh it off.
He was internally freaking out.
He’d been on the brink of slipping into little space all day long and hadn’t been able to because he’d constantly been around the boys. This morning, he and Jimin went out for breakfast—Something Namjoon hadn’t wanted to do because he woke up feeling a little fuzzy and floaty and it was the same way he always felt when he was close to slipping. He’d planned to lock himself in his room and spend the day coloring and playing with the few toys that he had hidden in a chest underneath his bed, but Jimin had asked him—Begged, with puppy dog eyes, actually—to go out to breakfast with him at some new restaurant that he’d been wanting to go to since it’d first opened.
Namjoon had been reluctant but Jimin had given him those damn puppy dog eyes of his, and Namjoon had figured that he’d gone this long without slipping, he could go a bit longer. It wouldn’t take them too long to grab breakfast anyway, would it?
They’d gone to the restaurant, eaten, and made it back home within an hour and a half and Namjoon was thankful as hell to be back inside the walls of his own home. Breakfast had been hard to get through because they’d been seated right next to a table with a large family that consisted of four kids, all of whom had adorable little toys to play with, from teddy bears to dolls to adorable coloring books, and one of them had been watching a cartoon on their tablet while they ate.
Namjoon had tried not to pay them any attention, but at one point, one of the kids dropped their stuffed animal and it landed right next to Namjoon’s foot. Of course, he had to pick it up, it was the kind thing to do. When he handed it back to the kid, the child had thanked him and then began babbling incoherent words to him nonstop.
Noticing their sibling talking to the man, the other three kids joined in. Namjoon tried to find a polite way to stop interacting with them, but there was really no way out. Jimin had thought the whole thing was adorable and began talking to them as well, which only encouraged them. It was only when the family finished their food and had to get going that Namjoon had caught a break.
When he and Jimin got home, he was antsy and anxious to get to his room and do what he’d planned to do earlier, but Jungkook and Hobi had stopped him.
The two of them were just heading out when Namjoon and Jimin were heading in. Jimin had asked where they were off to and had immediately grown excited when they told him they were going to go shopping.
Namjoon had tried to creep off to his room while the three of them were talking but Jimin quickly caught sight of him and asked where he was going. Namjoon had told him that he was just going to sit this one out and stay home, but Jimin had pouted and given him another set of puppy eyes, which apparently, Namjoon could never argue with.
Which is why he ended up strolling through the mall an hour later, close to having a breakdown as he was forced to try not to slip while surrounded by all kinds of cute stores and things.
They’d visited the yogurt shop upon first entering the mall since it was closest to the entrance. The inside of the yogurt shop was soft pink and purple themed and had all kinds of cute posters hanging up, plus many, many adorable decorations that made Namjoon feel so small.
Even the yogurt itself was cute. Namjoon had ordered mango yogurt with blueberries and strawberries, and the strawberries had been arranged in a circle and stacked on top of each other to resemble flowers, while the blueberries formed a heart in the middle of the yogurt.
The yogurt containers and spoon had cartoons on them and Namjoon had stared at them in awe for a while before his members caught his attention, asking what was wrong and why he was staring at his yogurt so intensely.
He’d internally panicked, realizing that he was almost caught, but he managed to keep a calm exterior and told them that he was still just sleepy and zoning out a bit, which they seemed to believe.
They ate their yogurt—Namjoon practically shoveled his into his mouth, wanting to get done as soon as possible so that they could leave the cute shop—before going to walk around the mall. None of them had anything in particular that they wanted to buy, they’d just felt like browsing today to give themselves something to do.
They walked around for a while and Namjoon had just started to relax when they passed a toy shop. Hoseok had stopped upon seeing an adorable toy in the window display, which he said would be cute to put in his studio. He’d dragged them inside the store and Namjoon had spent the entirety of the thirty minutes that they were in there hiding in the store’s bathroom.
“Stomach hurts. Be back.” He’d said shortly before marching determinedly toward the bathrooms and squeezing his eyes shut as soon as he was in there.
He waited until he got a text from Jungkook that they were about to leave to come out again. In all, he spent about sixty seconds in the actual store, surrounded by toys, but those sixty seconds were the absolute worst. Every time he so happened to glance at a cute toy, he felt his throat closing and his eyes blurring, his head feeling fuzzy as he began to feel a little lighter. To his horror, he actually let out a babble. A babble. An incoherent gurgling sound of a sort.
“What did you say?” Hobi had asked him as they left the store.
It took Namjoon a good minute to start feeling a little more like his usual self again and form a sentence.
“Um—N-Nothing.” Was all he’d managed to say.
Hobi had shrugged and continued walking, trying to catch up with Jimin and Jungkook who’d gotten a few paces ahead of them.
Namjoon had quietly whined.
He wanted to ask one of them to hold his hand while he walked, or better yet, carry him so that he wouldn’t have to walk at all. The mall was a little crowded and he didn’t like it. He felt like he might get lost if one of them wasn’t close to him, holding him in some sort of way, and he couldn’t imagine how terrifying it’d be to be lost in the huge mall all by himself without them around.
He’d forced himself to rid himself of those thoughts, quickly shaking his head and willing his legs to move so that he could catch up with them.
The rest of their time at the mall had gone alright. Namjoon still felt antsy and eager to get home so he could just let go, and he still felt dangerously close to slipping, but at least he wasn’t surrounded by cute things that could potentially push him over the edge.
When he’d gotten home, he’d run straight to his room. He didn’t take notice of how his friends sent him weird looks—he’d been acting strange all day and they’d all noticed it. They weren’t sure what was going on with him but they knew it had to be something.—he wasn’t thinking about how it might look to them for him to be full-fledged sprinting to his room as if he was being chased by a serial killer or something. All he was thinking about was the fact that he needed to get to his room. He needed to be alone, he needed to be able to slip.
Unfortunately, he was not alone in his room because Jin was here as well, and worse than that was the fact that his room had been decorated absolutely adorably. The color pink itself wasn’t a trigger for him, but the cute plushies and pillows scattered all around certainly were.
It had been two, almost three years.
He’d managed to hide this part of himself for so long. He’d managed to hold himself together while they were at meet and greets where the fans would give them the most adorable presents, all of which made it increasingly more difficult for him to remain big as the time went on.
He’d managed to hold himself together on tour when they found free time to roam around the shops of whichever city they were in and ended up finding a plethora of absolutely adorable souvenirs that made him feel so small as he looked at them.
He’d managed to hold himself together all those time in the dorm when he was feeling small and desperate to just slip no matter who was around—but he’d always reel those thoughts back in and keep himself together because all of his members were around him and he didn’t want to freak them out by acting little when they probably knew nothing about little space.
They’d probably think he was a freak if he slipped in front of them, which is why he made sure to keep this part of himself to himself. He did want to tell them about this because they were his members, his best friends, his brothers. He trusted them with everything and they always told each other everything. He didn’t like hiding such a big part of himself from them. He wanted to tell them about it.
But he didn’t want to be selfish.
They might think he’s weird for being like this. They might lose all respect for him. They might no longer take him seriously. They might wonder if he’s even cut out to be their leader if he has to revert back to a childlike headspace just to relieve stress every now and then instead of doing it in some sort of ‘normal’ way.
Them finding out about this could put a strain on their relationship, thus making it harder to work together as BTS. What if them finding out about this ended up ruining their whole career? What if they were so appalled by him that they decided they no longer wanted him to be their groupmate? What if they kicked him out of BTS, or worse, disbanded? Their army would be so heartbroken and it would be all his fault!
For all these reasons, he tried so hard to keep this to himself for so long. But now, he just couldn’t control himself anymore.
“Namjoon?” Jin tilted his head, the smile wiped off of his face as he noticed the blank look on Namjoon’s face. He’d been expecting the man to yell at him or something, but instead, he was just standing there, staring straight ahead. “Are you okay?”
“Mmph.” Namjoon huffed a little as he sunk to the floor.
Jin gasped, covering his mouth with his hand as he stared worriedly at Namjoon, who wasn’t hurt at all. He landed on his butt, then shifted to his knees and began crawling toward one of the largest stuffed animals that Jin had been able to find.
“Namjoon?” Jin called quietly, watching in pure confusion as Namjoon settled himself between the stuffed teddy bear’s legs and hugged it, rubbing his cheek against its soft fur.
“Namu!” Namjoon yelled happily before sticking a thumb in his mouth.
“Hmm…” Jin hummed to himself, utterly perplexed.
This was...A little odd to see, to say the least, but he wasn’t panicking just yet. He was sure there was a reasonable explanation for this.
“Is this a prank?” He decided to start with the obvious question first. Maybe Namjoon was just trying to freak him out or something?
Namjoon didn’t respond, just blinked at Jin and continued sucking on his thumb and rubbing his cheek against the teddy bear’s fur.
“Okay, stay there, please.” He mumbled--more to himself than to Namjoon--before turning to walk out of the room.
He jogged to their kitchen and saw everyone else there, sitting around the table, talking. They smiled once they saw him, but their faces quickly became serious as they saw how worried he looked.
“Hyung, what’s wrong?” Taehyung asked.
“Namjoon is being weird!” He said.
“He’s been acting strange all day,” Hobi sighed. “Maybe it’s just an off day for him? Or he could just be really tired. We should just let him rest and then maybe he’ll feel better tomorrow.”
“No, you don’t understand,” Jin shook his head. “He’s currently on the floor of his room, cuddled up with a huge stuffed animal, sucking his thumb.”
“Well, that’s...Interesting?” Yoongi murmured. “Why’s he doing that?”
“I don’t know!” Jin practically whined, stomping his foot a little. “That’s why I came down here to get you guys! I don’t know what’s up with him!”
“Maybe I do,” Jungkook mumbled after a few moments of thinking. “Is he acting like how a kid would act?”
“Kinda? I guess? I don’t know. He’s sucking his thumb, so yeah.”
“Maybe it’s little space then.” Jungkook shrugged.
“It’s like a coping mechanism for some people. It’s where someone gets into the headspace of a child, which can be a way to relieve stress.”
“How do you know this?” Jimin asked.
“When I took an online sexual education course that centered around BDSM—“
“What? Is that a thing?”
“Why’d you take an online sex course?”
“When was this?”
“The details aren’t important!” Jungkook huffed. Sometimes he just got bored, and sometimes he really struggled to get to sleep at night. Boredom mixed with insomnia can sometimes result in taking a four-hour-long online sex-ed course. Let’s not dwell on it! “The point is, the course covered a lot of topics and little space was one of them!”
“So, it’s like...A BDSM thing?” Jin asked. “Is it sexual?”
“Not really. I mean for some people it can be, I guess. Like, some people have sex even when they feel little. Some people don’t, and it doesn’t have to be a sexual thing at all. I don’t know that much about it, I just know it’s supposed to be a coping mechanism for some people.”
“Well, if that’s what this is then what are we supposed to do?” Yoongi asked.
“What do you mean what are we supposed to do?”
“I don’t know...Namjoon’s just upstairs all alone right now. Shouldn’t we, like, do something for him or something? Does he need anything? Are we supposed to take care of him?”
“I read something about some littles having caregivers,” Jungkook shrugged. “I don’t know what’s in that job description. I’m guessing you’re just supposed to treat him like how you’d treat any kid.”
“I’ve never been good with kids!” Jimin panicked a little. “I mean, hanging out with them for a few minutes at a time is cool, but actually taking care of one?! I don’t know how to do that!”
“Well, there’s six of us. Between all of us, we should be alright.” Taehyung chuckled before standing up. “Come on, we should get back to him. I doubt leaving him alone for too long is a good idea right now.”
They all agreed and began heading out of the kitchen, but they stopped short once they saw that Namjoon was no longer in his room, but now standing inside the living room, wiping relentlessly at his eyes, although it did nothing to help as tears continuously streamed down his cheeks.
They all paused, gasping and eyes widening at the sight. It wasn’t every day that Namjoon cried—it was a pretty rare sight and they were all glad that it was because it was fucking heartbreaking.
“Namjoonie, what’s wrong?” Jimin asked quickly.
“I-I’m sorry!” He sniffled. “I didn’t mean t-to!”
“What do you mean?” Jin asked softly. “You didn’t do anything.”
“I ruined everything,” He sobbed. “I slipped! I didn’t m-mean for you to find out, I promise! I’m sorry!”
Taehyung let out a quiet whine, upset to see his hyung so upset. He ran over to the man quickly, latching on to him as he gave him a tight hug. Jimin and Hoseok soon followed.
“It’s okay!” Hobi told him quickly. “There’s nothing wrong with it! I mean—I don’t know anything about it, but if you’re doing it then there’s nothing wrong with it!”
“Yeah! Jungkookie says it’s how you relieve your stress! I’m glad you have a good way to do that!” Taehyung told him. “We don’t want you to be stressed, hyung!”
“I-I tried to hide it so you wouldn’t be mad or uncomfortable or disgusted with me.” Namjoon stated quietly. “I know it’s weird, I just…”
“I don’t know if it’s weird or not,” Yoongi shrugged. “But if it is, who cares? All of us are into or do weird things. Jungkook took an online sex-ed class, for Christ sake.”
“There’s nothing weird about wanting to be sexually educated!” Jungkook pouted.
Jin ignored him. “Yeah, and Jungkook also sleeps with a nightlight sometimes and that’s pretty weird since he’s a full-grown adult, but we don’t say anything about that.”
“Yeah, and we’re not mad or uncomfortable or disgusted with Jungkook even though he gives us lots of reasons to be, so why would we feel that way towards our amazing leader?” Jimin smiled.
“Okay, I don’t know why we have to bully Jungkookie just to make Rap-Mon hyung feel better but—“
“See? He even refers to himself in the third person like some kind of weirdo,” Taehyung said. “But we still love him and accept him for who he is, just like how we still love you and accept you for who you are.”
Jungkook huffed but begrudgingly nodded when Namjoon glanced over to him, wanting to show his support for the man.
“You shouldn’t feel like you have to hide anything from us, ever. You wouldn’t want us hiding anything from you, and we know you’d never judge us for anything, so you should know that we wouldn’t judge you for anything either.” Yoongi told him.
“I just thought that this particular thing might be a little...Too weird for you guys to be okay with.” Namjoon sniffled.
“Well, you thought wrong!” Hobi smiled brightly. “We don’t know anything about this, but we’ll learn. Kookie said that caretakers are a thing that people who go into little space may need. Do you want one of us to be your caretaker? We could do it!”
Namjoon made a shocked face that made them all chuckle. “Um...I never thought I’d have the option of having a caretaker...I never even dared to think about it.” He smiled a little. “Maybe it would be nice, but you don’t have to do that. I’ve been okay without one for this long.” He shrugged.
“Well, you don’t have to go without one any longer!” Jin smiled. “I don’t know about everyone else, but I’d be happy to take care of you!”
A flurry of agreements filled the room and Namjoon blushed as all the attention was on him. He tried to make himself smaller and hide behind Jimin, his fist curling into the back of the boy’s shirt as he hid his face in his neck. Jimin cooed, nearly about to combust from how cute it was.
“Are you feeling little now?”
“K-Kinda.” Yes, he was feeling very much little right now. It’d been a stressful and overwhelming day for him, after all.
“You can be little if you want,” Jungkook encouraged. “Um—Maybe just tell us how to take care of you first? We don’t wanna do anything wrong.”
“I don’t know...I don’t need much when I’m little. I usually just lay down with one of my stuffed animals and stare at the wall or something.”
“That sounds boring.” Yoongi frowned, wincing when Jin smacked his arm harshly.
“Don’t be rude!” He hissed.
“It’s okay,” Namjoon smiled. “It is pretty boring, but I don’t mind it when I’m little because I just feel really small like...Like a baby sometimes. So it doesn’t feel boring to me because I just get interested in small things, like how pretty the sunlight looks coming into my room, or something usually insignificant like that that keeps me entertained for a long time when I’m little. And sometimes I feel a little bigger and I play with my toys…” He paused, blushing and looking down.
“Keep going.” Taehyung patted him softly. “What toys do you like to play with?”
They waited for him to continue but he didn’t, now looking around wide-eyed, though instead of looking frightened, he just looked interested.
“I think he slipped.” Jimin said, chuckling a little. That much was obvious when Namjoon began mouthing at his shirt, chewing on it just slightly.
“What do you think he meant by Heli? Is that one of his stuffed animals?” Hobi asked.
“Now that I think of it…” Jin murmured. “I remember seeing him with a toy helicopter once a few months ago. It was decorated with lots of stickers and I didn’t get to see much of it because when I walked into his room, he nearly chucked it away from him.”
“Heli!” Namjoon smiled.
Jin smiled back, ruffling his hair. “We should go up to his room and find his toys so that he can play. Would you like that, Namjoon?”
“Namu!” He grinned.
Yoongi chuckled. “He’s cute like this.”
“Yes, he is,” Taehyung nodded. “I’m going to go get my laptop. We can all sit in his room and browse for toys. He said he only had a few and we need to change that!”
“Taehyung’s right. I’m gonna get mine too!” Hobi yelled before he and Tae ran off.
Namjoon giggled at them and allowed himself to be gently tugged along as they headed to his room. Jimin patted his hand and smiled at him.
“I’m glad we know about this now so we can take care of you, hyung.” He told him, though Namjoon wasn’t paying much attention, now mesmerized by their hands being locked together.