Title: Sorry But I Need To Have You
Word count: ~4,500
Summary: Jeongguk's never one to back down from a dare. But when said dare involves making out with Park Jimin, Jeongguk finds himself wanting it to be more than just that.
Author's Note: Thanks to Dr B. for the quick beta! Love you!
The thing about being on the school team for soccer, and also one of the contenders for the trophy in the nationals, is that the school cheerleading team performs at all of the home games. Every last one.
Which is why when they win the championship on home ground, with Jeon Jeongguk, star striker extraordinaire, scoring the winning goal, the cheerleading team is on the sidelines. Which is also why when his team eggs him on to kiss one of the cheerleaders during the celebrations, Jeongguk doesn't even need to think about whom to go for.
Park Jimin, the face of the university's cheerleading team. The obvious choice to Jeongguk. Yet a most surprising sight for the spectators. There's a mixture of cat-calling and whistling, and there're also jeers and exaggerated groans of disgust.
As expected. Jimin, despite the androgynous name, is a guy, after all. So is Jeongguk. That doesn't sit well with most people. But Jeongguk isn't going to let such a perfect chance pass like that. He saw an opening and he took it. The rest of the people can suck it.
So Jeongguk stands just on the edge of the field, his large hands cupping Jimin’s adorable little face, and plants a really wet one on the cheerleader. And Jimin doesn't resist. Or at least, not at first. Jeongguk thinks he reciprocates, before he belatedly realizes what's happening, and in full view of half the school, then Jimin leans away. He doesn't push Jeongguk away—Jeongguk supposes that has to mean something. It has to. But no, Jimin just leans backwards to put some distance between his lips and Jeongguk’s.
They stand looking at each other for a while, then Jimin says first, “I'll— I'll see you around.”
Jeongguk counts that as a victory.
But it isn't his first one.
Because that isn't the first time they kissed.
The story begins from that fateful day two weeks ago, at Jeongguk’s friend’s Halloween party. Coincidentally, Taehyung is Jimin's best friend.
Jeongguk didn't know until he showed up at the Halloween party as a suave Kingsman secret agent that he found someone who looked better than him. To be honest, Jeongguk was a little miffed by the fact. That was, until he realized whom the sexy magician with the ridiculously hot smoky eye make-up was.
He had stared for far too long—who wouldn't, honestly—till Taehyung unceremoniously shoved his shoulder. Jeongguk almost spilled the cup of beer he had been holding, and glared at Taehyung accusingly. It was an interesting sight, a secret agent glowering at a vampire who was grinning widely and showing all his teeth and fangs. But Taehyung had found it amusing, and nudged Jeongguk in the ribs, gesturing towards Jimin then wiggling a brow at Jeongguk.
Jeongguk’s lips were about to twist into a scowl, but instead, he pushed up his glasses with a finger and pointedly looked away. Taehyung laughed and somehow figured it was a good time to mention to Jeongguk that Jimin’s single. Jeongguk pretended he didn't care about that piece of information, stalking away to join some of their other mutual friends.
He thought about it the whole night, despite the number of girls (and guys) who had gone up to him and tried to strike up a conversation on the pretext of getting to know him better. Jeongguk entertained everyone with smiles, and occasionally smirks, his naturally humorous personality showing through his teasing words. That lasted till when the party started to die down, with people leaving in batches, and eventually only Taehyung’s circle of closer friends remained.
And he gathered everyone around, in an attempt to introduce everyone who didn't know each other yet to each other. It's a very Taehyung thing to do, really. Jeongguk should have seen it coming a mile away, when all of the acquaintance-tier friends had left and only the bff-tier remained, and it was evident the bff-tier is split into obvious cliques. Taehyung likes his friends, and he likes when his friends know his friends too, because that means twice the fun. Or so he says.
Jeongguk has nothing against having more friends, even though he’s happy with his own little group of closer friends. He isn’t the type who believes in the saying “the more, the merrier”. Not to brag, but with Jeongguk’s almost superstar status in the school, he knows that’s what most people want to be friends with him for.
Anyway, according to Taehyung, there was no better, faster way to break the ice than Spin the Bottle, as old-fashioned as it was. So Jeongguk ended up sitting next to Jimin in the relatively small circle, and he supposed it was divine—meaning, Taehyung—intervention that it happened.
Jeongguk was more than aware of how Jimin’s knee was pressing against his thigh from how close they were sitting. He sighed inwardly, wondering how he was going to feign nonchalance for the rest of the night. Or not. The easier thing to do was to acknowledge how attractive he thought Jimin was, and actually do something about it. He’s Jeon Jeongguk, for goodness sakes. He had more confidence in himself than this.
As destiny would have it, Jeongguk didn’t even have to try hitting on Jimin himself. It was already written in the stars how things were going to work.
So Jeongguk looked at the bottle, blinked at it a few times, then he looked up at Taehyung, who didn’t even bother to hide his smirk, and finally Jeongguk looked at Jimin, who was peering at him with those innocent eyes behind the smoky make-up. It wasn’t fair, the way Jimin was looking at him just wasn’t fair at all. Jeongguk needed a drink desperately, but he knew he wasn’t going to get one so he might as well just—
Jeongguk held Jimin’s chin and leaned towards him, ignoring how JImin went all wide-eyed at his forwardness, and kissed him fully on the lips. He briefly considered just a small peck or a quick one that would convey how he didn’t want to do it but had to. But Jeongguk didn’t want Jimin to think that. So, what the hell. Either you go big or go home, right?
But Jimin didn’t resist. Not even when Jeongguk slid his hand to the back of his neck to draw him in closer, even tilting his head to kiss Jimin deeper. They ended up getting really into the kiss, tongue and everything, and when Taehyung came over to pull them apart, laughing, Jeongguk realized that Jimin was grabbing at the front of his suit. His tie jutted out loosely from where it had been yanked, and Jeongguk cleared his throat and smoothed his hand down the front of his suit.
They didn’t speak for the rest of the night, but the others were too intoxicated to remember and tease them for the kiss, so Jeongguk figured that was one good thing, at least.
Fast-forward two weeks later, here Jeongguk is. Haunted by the constant memories of kissing Jimin, knowing how good his lips felt and how lovely he tasted, yet he still isn’t even friends with Jimin.
Which is exactly why Jeongguk jumped at the chance to kiss Jimin again, to hell with not being friends. They can kiss again before becoming friends. Jeongguk has no qualms with that. And it seems to him that Jimin feels the same too.
So Jeongguk has to do something for real now. He’s not going to let Jimin slip through his fingers when he already has him so close. First, he has to look for Taehyung, the closest and most important link he has to the attractive cheerleader.
“You’re insane,” are Taehyung’s first words to Jeongguk when he ambushes his friend after school.
“I’m perfectly fine—”
“No, you’re not. You grabbed Jimin and kissed him in front of half the school, or something! You’re completely out of your mind.”
“Oh, come on, hyung! He was just there. What else was I supposed to do?”
“For starters, you could consider how Jimin would feel if you did that, and maybe you’d have chosen to do nothing instead.”
See, Taehyung is usually fun and jokes, and that’s the general impression people get of him. But he’s not just that, and Jeongguk knows it’s serious if Taehyung is being serious.
Chosen to do nothing instead— Right. Why didn’t that occur to Jeongguk when he was standing by the edge of the field looking at the group of cheerleaders? All he thought at that moment had been what Jimin would think if he had kissed someone else. Now that Taehyung has mentioned this, Jeongguk supposes he really wasn’t thinking back then. So that was a dumb move, but it’s already done and Jeongguk can’t take it back, and he can’t erase anyone’s memories either.
Furrowing his brows and scowling slightly, Jeongguk steels his gaze. The important thing now is to deal with his most pressing problem, which is, what to do about Jimin. (Doing Jimin is definitely in the picture somewhere too, for sure, but first he’s got to know Jimin for real.)
Jeongguk takes a deep breath. “Okay, but I can’t take it back anymore.”
“Apologize to him.”
“It’s hard enough being a male cheerleader! You know what people say about them, even the really tall and macho ones… Well, especially the really tall and macho ones.”
“Jimin isn’t one of those.” Not that Jeongguk minds Jimin’s height, or lack thereof. In fact, he kind of likes it.
“I know that!” Taehyung almost yells in Jeongguk’s face. “I’m just saying.”
“Sorry,” Jeongguk mutters and keeps quiet.
“Yes, so apologize to him.”
“You know, I came to you because I wanted to find a way to contact him.”
“Oh, right.” Taehyung holds out his hand and wiggles his fingers.
Jeongguk huffs and pulls out his phone, slapping it into Taehyung’s palm.
Taehyung’s fingers move fast across the screen, then he hands the phone back to Jeongguk and stalks off without another word.
Jeongguk frowns, then glances at his phone when his friend disappears around a corner unexpectedly quick. Then Jeongguk knows why. There’s a sent message to an unknown number and it says: “Hey Jimin, DTF? - JK”
Jeongguk spends the next ten messages trying to convince Jimin that he didn’t type that message, only to find out after that Jimin already realized it must have been Taehyung but he wanted to play Jeongguk for a bit so he pretended to be all shocked and offended.
Jeongguk grins as he rolls around on his bed. He likes Jimin so much it’s strange because he based most of that feeling just on the kisses they’ve shared. Yeah, so it’s shallow, he likes Jimin because Jimin kisses so good. But then again, that can’t mean the reasons to like Jimin stops at just that. That makes sense, right? Whatever, Jeongguk still needs to actually know Jimin to find that out.
But hey, at least he has scored a date with Jimin. After Jimin stopped trolling him, that was.
Now all Jeongguk has to do is figure out 1) how to apologize to Jimin, and 2) how to not look at Jimin’s lips hungrily and only think about kissing them.
The first one isn’t so hard.
When Jeongguk arrives at their meeting place five minutes earlier than their set time, Jimin’s already there, wearing a light grey hoodie that hides his orange hair, and sitting on a bench surrounded by fallen leaves. Jeongguk feels himself falling a little more.
“I’m not DTF,” is what Jimin says with a straight face when he looks up and sees Jeongguk.
Jeongguk laughs. Of course, how could he forget that was what Taehyung had typed in the text he sent Jimin? “Okay, let’s try that again— Hi Jimin, I’m Jeongguk.”
Jimin breaks into a smile so wide it makes Jeongguk falter. Then he takes Jeongguk’s outstretched hand and shakes it firmly. “Hello Jeongguk. Nice to meet you. Please call me ‘Jimin hyung'.”
Jeongguk ignores that last part of what Jimin said, and takes a seat next to him without asking. “Uh, so…” He tries, but his tongue isn’t cooperating with him. He needs to apologize to Jimin before anything else, or he will just end up letting the topic stay hidden forever.
Jimin looks at him expectantly.
“I wanted to apologize to you for what I did after the match. That was… incredibly reckless and I’m really sorry.”
Jimin’s brows raise so high they’re half-hidden by his fringe. He definitely didn’t see this coming, then.
“I don’t expect this to make anything easier for you, but—”
“It’s okay. It just took me by surprise. My team hasn’t been mean to me about it, and I’m sure everyone else will forget about it when they have something new to gossip about.”
Jeongguk wonders when that would be. He is the star player of their soccer team, after all, and that means whatever he does usually becomes a hot topic for quite a while. In the past few days, he has already had to deal with lots of hushed whispering and judgmental stares and very obvious finger-pointing, and he’s sure Jimin must have had his fair share. He has already gotten used to those, so they aren’t so much of a problem to him. But thinking back on it and knowing he could have caused Jimin trouble instead, Jeongguk feels a little bad about that.
“Really, don’t worry about it.” Jimin puts a hand on Jeongguk’s shoulder reassuringly.
Jeongguk almost jumps, and only barely stops himself in time. He glances at Jimin, whose smile is still brighter than the sun at midday, and suddenly Jeongguk realizes it’s not just the kiss that’s gotten him all obsessed over Park Jimin. He’s so fucked. Managing a weak smile in return, Jeongguk nods.
So that’s the first thing.
Dinner with Jimin isn’t so easy for Jeongguk. They chat over burgers, and Jimin laughs every time Jeongguk makes a snide remark at something Jimin says. Jeongguk doesn’t know what’s so funny or why it tickles Jimin so much, but what he does know is that Jimin is an absolute ball of sunshine. Never mind Jimin’s lips. Jeongguk can’t take his eyes off Jimin’s entire face.
He supposes that means his second issue isn’t so much of an issue.
Which brings about a third issue.
Jeongguk very possibly doesn’t just want Jimin’s kisses. He wants Jimin’s smile, too. (Okay, so maybe he’s obsessed with everything about Jimin’s lips.)
They don’t kiss that day, and Jeongguk is just the slightest bit disappointed. He’s now more concerned about the prospect of finally getting to know Jimin, and that Jimin is very much like his cheerleader persona. Jeongguk likes that about him, because for the amount of attention he gets on a daily basis, Jeongguk is rarely a ray of sunshine.
Taehyung sometimes calls him a sourpuss because he is almost always all scowls and sneers and sharp tongue. His winning personality only appears when, well, he’s winning. But he’s still the most popular player—and arguably the current best as well—on the team, so his personality doesn’t matter that much.
So when Taehyung listens to the voice note Jeongguk sends him that night, the first thing he hears is a loud wail. Jeongguk can almost imagine Taehyung’s face when he listens to it. The wail eventually gives way for a very resigned-sounding “fuck me”.
The voice note Taehyung sends back to Jeongguk starts with high-pitched screaming, and followed by “I’ll pass on your message to Jimin”.
Jeongguk panics and texts Taehyung with twenty—or maybe thirty—messages that just say “NO”, complete with the capitalisation of both letters for emphasis.
Then Taehyung replies with an animated sticker of a cat lying on its back and laughing while wiggling its little feet.
It suddenly hits Jeongguk, the similarity Jimin has with Taehyung, and he figures that’s why they’re best friends. He sighs loudly and flops onto his bed, eventually falling into a deep sleep with vivid dreams that feature a lot of kissing with Jimin. Very deep, very passionate, very French, kissing.
He wakes up feeling like he hasn’t slept at all.
And for all the bad boy thing that Jeongguk thinks he has going on, he sucks at it. He doesn’t even know how to ask Jimin out again. Funny how he’s never faced that problem with anyone else before and then one Park Jimin comes along and Jeongguk is 200% screwed.
The other funny thing is that Jeongguk is pretty sure he has never actually run into Jimin in school before, probably due to the fact that they are in different years and courses and also, different clubs. Basically, they have nothing in common at all. Besides Taehyung, anyway. But after everything that has happened, Jeongguk uncannily runs into Jimin five times in just one day.
Which is really weird because Jeongguk hasn’t even been doing anything out of the ordinary. Monday is the most dreaded day of the week, even for Jeongguk, so he usually goes about it in the shortest way he can just so it seems like it ends quicker.
So this is a really long Monday for Jeongguk, and he isn’t complaining.
The first time happens when Jeongguk has just gotten out of his first class, and he literally runs into Jimin. Well, Jimin’s the one running, actually, and he collides head-on with Jeongguk the moment Jeongguk steps out of class. Unfortunately, neither of them fall. Yes, Jeongguk understands that it would normally be a good thing to not fall because that would save the involved parties any kind of embarrassment. But some part of Jeongguk’s tsundere heart might have wanted that to end up like in the dramas, when the leading lady falls onto the leading man accidentally and their lips crash onto each other’s.
The saving grace here is that Jeongguk reflexively holds Jimin when it happens. In his defence, he was going to hold the person regardless of whom they were, and it isn’t until Jimin is in his arms that Jeongguk realizes whom it is.
“Hi,” Jeongguk says.
“Hi,” Jimin says back from where he is being held in Jeongguk’s arms, looking up at him with wide eyes and an unmistakable blush that Jeongguk’s sure is reflected in his cheeks as well.
Then Jeongguk quickly holds Jimin up before pulling his hands away, awkwardly slipping them into his back pockets. “What are you doing here—” The words sound far too harsh to Jeongguk’s own ears the moment they were out of his mouth. He bites on his lip as he stops himself, then restarts slowly, “I don’t often see you around here.”
Jimin smiles. “Yeah, I’m just looking for the professor today.”
Jeongguk nods. “I’ll, uh— I was leaving, so—”
“Okay, I’ll see you around.” Then Jimin starts to walk away, and suddenly Jeongguk is panicking.
“Jimin, wait,” Jeongguk pulls Jimin back by his wrist.
The shorter boy regards him with a blank expression. “Jimin hyung.”
Jeongguk refrains from rolling his eyes because that isn’t going to help his case at all. “Jimin hyung,” he repeats, then continues, “Do you… want to do dinner tonight? Or tomorrow? Or whenever, some time this week?” It occurs to him belatedly just how desperate he sounded.
Jimin’s blush deepens as he wriggles his hand out of Jeongguk’s grip. “Sure.”
That’s how Jeongguk scores his second date with Jimin—completely by coincidence.
And then they proceed to pretend not to know each other for the rest of the day when they keep running into each other again.
Fortunately, they are both a lot less awkward with food on the table between them, and manage to keep a friendly conversation going. It is a lot like the first time they went out together, but Jeongguk’s determined to get a kiss this time. He needs to, as much as he enjoys the way Jimin’s eyes disappear into little crescents and the way he giggles all high-pitched and absolutely adorable. The obsession with Jimin’s plump, pink, pouty lips—the alliteration is totally necessary and accurate—is unhealthy, Jeongguk knows, but so is his obsession with the entire of Jimin.
His lips are where everything started from, and Jeongguk needs the affirmation.
Which is really just an excuse.
Jeongguk knows very well how he feels about Jimin now, even if he isn’t going to admit it.
The weather has gone from a mild, chilly wind to a freezing negative five degrees celsius in the time they had been eating pizza in the warm, toasty bistro. The tiny snowflakes fluttering in the icy breeze fall onto the sleeves of his coat before Jeongguk even registers how cold it is.
Jimin suddenly exhales deeply, and Jeongguk turns to look at him, only to see a puff of smoke disappearing as quick as it had appeared in front of Jimin’s mouth, and Jimin’s hugging himself despite the thick coat he has on.
Jeongguk doesn’t hesitate to wind his scarf snugly around Jimin’s neck, though Jimin looks up at him and tries to protest. He isn’t having any of it, and keeps wriggling his wrists out of Jimin’s little hands until he finally manages to get the scarf wrapped in place.
So Jimin mumbles, “Thanks,” and stands there looking at his feet.
Jeongguk puts his arm around Jimin’s shoulders and starts walking without a word. He can feel Jimin’s gaze on him again, possibly questioning or confused, so Jeongguk pretends he doesn’t notice, and just focuses on the path in front and avoiding the people in the opposite direction.
“Where are we going..?”
Jeongguk falters for a moment. He honestly hasn’t thought about that. Just walking along with Jimin feels so comfortable and natural. “I don’t know, just… walk?”
Jimin laughs softly.
Then Jeongguk feels a soft tug at the collar of his coat and he has to turn to look at Jimin, whose cheeks and nose are a rosy pink from the cold. Jeongguk tries not to think about how cute Jimin looks. “Yeah?”
“Do you want your scarf back? You look cold.”
Jeongguk attributes the redness of his entire face to nervousness rather than cold. It’s not a bad way to keep his face warm, if he thinks about it. Shaking his head, he clears his throat and looks away from Jimin.
There’s silence for a couple of moments as Jimin presses closer against Jeongguk’s side.
“I know what you want, Jeonggukie.”
Jimin said it very softly, like he’s giving Jeongguk an escape route if Jeongguk wants to deny.
But Jeongguk isn’t planning to. “Oh.” It is just that he doesn’t know what else to say either. The atmosphere is admittedly strange. The way Jeongguk is holding Jimin, and the closeness of them both, most definitely make them look like a couple, except they aren’t. Jeongguk wants Jimin so bad by now, yet he’s afraid to say it.
Jimin sighs quietly at Jeongguk’s response. “For someone who grabbed my face and kissed me in front of so many people, I thought you would be more forward than this.”
“I…” Jeongguk has no excuses, so he doesn’t say anything.
“Well, you’d better make up to me in some other way now because thanks to you, I’m going to lose my bet with Taetae.”
Jeongguk only has time to utter “huh?” before Jimin yanks on his wrist and pulls him to the side of the path, a spot that is unlit by the street lamps. Then Jimin’s lips are on his and oh—they are everything that Jeongguk has been thinking of and waiting for and they are so sweet. Jeongguk melts into Jimin, and has to hold onto Jimin’s shoulders to keep himself on his feet.
Jimin’s lips are a little icy, but they warm up against Jeongguk’s in no time at all, and Jeongguk briefly recalls the dream he had. This is so much better than that. This Jimin is real and this Jimin is kissing him and Jeongguk doesn’t need anything more.
Taehyung squints at Jeongguk and Jimin, who are paying him no heed even though they are very well aware that he’s watching them with a judgmental gaze.
It’s Taehyung’s Christmas party, and he very strategically and intentionally only hung up one sprig of mistletoe. Ever since his Halloween party and seeing for himself the consequences of his Spin the Bottle game, Taehyung may possibly be skeptical about accidentally matchmaking more of his friends who aren’t already mutual friends. No, he isn’t jealous or anything like that. It’s just the fact that he has to put up with things like this that annoys him a little.
Jeongguk and Jimin both found it amusing, which is why they are under a table, making out like nobody’s business.
Taehyung had stuck the sprig of mistletoe right smack in the middle of the underside of the table, which is laden with a variety of Christmas-related food, so nobody could accidentally find themselves under the mistletoe.
Jeongguk’s lying on the floor, and Jimin’s sitting on him, straddling his thighs as they kiss more passionately than the first time they had made out.
Jimin had lost his bet to Taehyung weeks ago when Jeongguk wasn’t the one who initiated a kiss without being forced to, but Jeongguk’s already pretty much done with making up for it anyway. Of course it isn’t like Jimin is complaining with more making out—making up.
So Taehyung’s still standing there with his arms crossed, clearly refusing to move away until either Jeongguk or Jimin acknowledge his presence.
They eventually decide to stop just so they can make him go away.
“It’s not our fault, you put the mistletoe there—”
Taehyung rolls his eyes. “Find some other place to make out, nobody wants to even come near the table to get food because of you two.”
“Oh.” Jeongguk says in a highly unapologetic tone.
“Yes, so get your pretty asses up and away from here.”
They eventually do, but only because Taehyung says they’ll have to finish all the food if they continue keeping the other people away from the table.
When Taehyung calls for another game session in the night, Jeongguk keeps trying to make out with Jimin while they’re seated in a circle, and it annoys Taehyung so much he squeezes himself between the both of them and sits there.
Jeongguk and Jimin look more amused than piqued, and they exchange glances despite there being a huge thing called Kim Taehyung between them. And said huge thing is just turning to smile smugly at each of them when something else catches Jeongguk’s eye instead.
The bottle’s pointing towards Taehyung.
And Jeongguk knows the bottle was pointing at this guy with mint green hair not a minute ago and said guy had chosen ‘dare’. He’s also sure this spin is for picking a partner to make out with— Jeongguk looks over at Jimin, who’s grinning way too widely even though he’s hiding it behind his hand, then at Taehyung, who’s staring blankly at the bottle though his gaze flickers quickly to the guy before a deep blush colours his cheeks.
Jeongguk and Jimin exchange a quick high-five behind Taehyung’s back. So that’s how they finally get to repay Taehyung.