Broken bonds; a #taekookau
The entire pack watch the omega scream, thrashing on the ground while his mate lies there. Lifeless, attacked by the rogues and taken too soon.
The childhood sweethearts. The most lovely pair of the pack, in shambles.
Taehyung lost his mate.
“He smells of the alpha!” the pack members gossip, “he is not pure anymore!”
“God, he is bad luck. He killed his mate.”
“I cannot believe he thought anyone would want him after this.”
“He is now a burden to his family! Moon goddess did right. He deserved it.”
Soulmates; a #yoonminau
“He is your soulmate,” his mother urges for him to understand, “no matter what, you need him to be your mate.”
Jimin knows. The omega knows that. Yet… he cannot marry that alpha. No matter what is the reason, he cannot marry that outcast.
I am putting it up for commission for now. See the price chart before contacting me, if you are interested. Thank you. x
Angst with happy ending
“That orphan?” Taehyung's mother wails, “you want me to marry my son off to that orphan?”
Taehyung's father looks helpless, “your son went ahead and slept with the alpha before their wedding-”
“They were soulmates!” she screams, “he did not know his soulmate would die!”
Taehyung's father, Sungho, lets out a soft curse, “do you have a better option? Because, packleader said, either Taehyung marries someone and stay in the pack or he kicks Taehyung out for breaking the rules and involving himself in a sexual act before the wedding.”
“Also, Jungkook is not an orphan,” his father tries to soothe his mate, “his parents were from this pack. They died when he was young. He is not someone we do not know?”
Taehyung's mother cries in her hands, shaking her head, “you know how these two are. They hate each other.”
“Yet, Jungkook agreed to marry him,” his father sighs.
“What if some day his soulmate shows up?” Taehyung's mother tries again, “then?”
Sungho gives her a pointed stare, “you know, I put forth the proposal that they have to mate immediately for that bond to break. Right?”
Taehyung stops listening after that. He curls in on himself, physically nauseous, while his parents discuss his life. With an alpha, he can barely stand.
Beomseok was his soulmate. Nine years older than him, mature, calm, responsible. He was the pack leader's left-hand man.
Taehyung cannot believe he died in that attack. The thought is yet to settle in his mind. He is yet to accept that his first love is gone. He is yet to accept he would never get to be in those arms, kiss those lips or feel that warmth and security around himself. Ever again.
Now he has to marry an alpha who he grew up hating. Jungkook is stubborn, selfish, a loner, awkward, always being rude to Taehyung. Taehyung closes his eyes, biting back the bile that rises to his mouth.
“He will be chosen as the packleader's new general if he marries Taehyung.”
Of course. Taehyung cannot help but let out a silent snort. Of course, Jungkook agreed for that reason. Taehyung bites back a whimper when his parents shake him as if he is asleep. They get him to sit up and talk him into it. Begging him to marry that alpha to save himself.
Taehyung wants to tell them that he would leave the pack. He can be a rogue. He does not care. But, looking at their tearful faces, those worried eyes, he cannot say it. He cannot let his parents face the shame of a son like him. He nods, lifelessly agreeing to marry Jungkook.
Taehyung does not remember the wedding. He walks down the aisle, exchanges the rings, takes the vows. All the while thinking of Beomseok. He sees Jungkook and imagines Beomseok in his place. By the time Jimin is hugging him, telling him he will be alright, Taehyung feels faint.
He remembers the mating though. Jungkook walks inside the room to Taehyung already on the bed, looking at the distance with empty eyes. The alpha closes the door, coming to sit on the bed. Taehyung feels the alpha move around, hesitant.
“Go on,” he murmurs, “do it.”
Jungkook looks at him, for the first time since that morning, Taehyung looks back at the alpha.
“Mate me,” he says, voice void of any emotions, “you better mate me. I married for that damn bite, so people would stop talking about me or my family!”
Jungkook watches him.
Taehyung shrugs the coat made of fur off of him, exposing his bare shoulders for the alpha's eyes. He goes to take off the flimsy shirt and Jungkook reaches to hold his hand. Effectively stopping him.
“I will mate you,” Jungkook murmurs, “but, we are not having sex.”
“It will hurt too much but bear with me-” Jungkook stops when Taehyung lets out a garbled laugh.
“You cannot hurt me,” Taehyung giggles, “I would say, try. Make me feel that pain. I want to feel that pain. Make it hurt because, I am,” his face crumbles, “tired of feeling empty!”
Jungkook does not try to conform him. He does not utter a word. He crawls up the bed and pulls Taehyung to himself. Taehyung goes. Jungkook watches him for a few seconds, Taehyung looks at him with a small nod.
Jungkook sighs, “fine, let's get this over with.”
Taehyung grips the alpha's bicep when Jungkook lies him down on the pillow. The alpha's face buried in his neck. Taehyung looks up at the ceiling, tears rolling out of his eyes. He had so many dreams about this night. So many plans. With a different alpha.
The bite is not followed by a single kiss. Jungkook keeps his body as far away from Taehyung as he can. His teeth sink into the flesh of the omega until he can taste blood on his tongue.
Taehyung feels the searing pain, more intense because they are not soulmates. Too painful.
Taehyung lets out a cry, feeling the sizzling burn of the bite. The alpha's venom mixing in his blood and his entire body crumbles. He grasps Jungkook's arm, nails digging there. Maybe this is why they are supposed to do it after sex, to distract themselves. It hurts.
Jungkook licks the bite, trying to heal it with his alpha pheromones. As fast as he can make it. The omega cries, trying to breathe properly.
“Beomseok,” Taehyung whimpers, the name falling from his lips easily, “please.”
Jungkook knows. The omega wants the alpha closer.
He cannot do anything but wait. Wait for his venom to mix with the omega's body. He watches the omega, holding him closer. Slowly, the omega calms down in his hold, eyes clearing to look at him. Jungkook nods. Taehyung's eyes water, he trembles in Jungkook's hold.
“Can we pretend that I mated you too?” Taehyung sniffles, “I do not,” he cries, shaking his head, “I do not want to do it. Not now.”
Jungkook watches the omega, “if you do not bite me, then I am not bound to you. Then my soulbond with my soulmate will not break.”
Taehyung wipes his eyes, “I do not want you,” he looks at the alpha, “I do not want to mate you. I am not-”
“You can break this bond any time you want,” Jungkook murmurs, “we are not soulmates. This mating bond can be broken if we both want. For now, please, do it.”
Taehyung looks at the alpha, and he feels nothing but regret. This is not what he wanted. This is not the man he wanted. God, Jungkook is younger than him. He looks away, the thought of spending the rest of his life with this man... he feels nauseous all over again.
“Tell others I left my bite somewhere you cannot show,” Taehyung whispers, “the pack just want to see the omega owned by the alpha anyway,” his face twists in disgust, “they will see my mark and that will be enough. I cannot do this. Not now. Please.”
Jungkook pulls back.
“Very well, then,” Jungkook rolls away from the omega, “sleep. I will be outside.”
Taehyung nods, curling up on himself while he hears Jungkook leave the room. He sleeps. For the first time since Beomseok died, he sleeps. Because he is exhausted, drained and so utterly broken.
Jungkook trains for hours. He is barely ever home. Taehyung thanks Namjoon and Hoseok profusely as they help him move his luggage to Jungkook's hut. The place is too small for Taehyung's liking, but he has to make it work. Couples get bigger huts if they are expecting pups.
“Do you not cook?” Jin looks around the kitchen area, “these pots are clean, as if no one ever put them over the fire yet.”
Taehyung frowns, “well, I eat in the packhouse with Jimin.”
Jin looks at him, “where does Jungkook eat?”
Taehyung is not sure.
“I do not know.”
Jin gapes, mouth opening to say something, but Namjoon gives him a pointed stare. The omega gulps down his words and tries to force a smile on his lips that look too painful.
“Married couples are to eat in their own hut,” he grits out with a smile, “that is the tradition.”
Taehyung's skin crawls with anger, “well,” he grits out, glaring at the omega, “if you expect me to be a good omega and cook, forget it, yes? Because, I do not know how to cook, and I would rather die then learn it just because of this pack's stupid traditions!”
“How about we go?” Namjoon comes to hold Jin to himself, “let Taehyung settle here. We can come back later.”
Taehyung nods, “yes, I would love that. You can always come back later to criticize my life choices some more. Do not feel bad if I slam the door on your face, though.”
Jin gapes, “I was just reminding you of the traditions-”
“Well, the pack's tradition got me here,” Taehyung screams, jerks the neckline of his shirt down to reveal his mating bite, “this pack's stupid rules forced me to get this! I am sorry if I am still not good enough!”
“I am sorry if you still think I am pathetic or not doing enough or lacking!” Taehyung ignores how his chest hurts with each word, the room feels too small, the walls closing in on him, “I am sorry if my ruined character is not fixing itself quickly, or I am not being obedient!”
“Sorry that your precious kook had to marry me! So sorry that I am not holding steaming plates of food in front of his face when he comes home or bending over on my hands and knees to let him enjoy my company! So sorry I am not being perfect and hosting you all correctly!”
“Do me a favour, go out there, sit with those omegas and gossip about me,” Taehyung points at the door, “do not mind me. Okay?! Tell them what you saw here and how badly I am treating my mate! Go on! Just do not tell me what to do because I know and I refuse!”
The room is quiet.
Tears roll out of Taehyung's eyes, “no one, not even a single soul, except for chim, asked me how I am doing. How it feels to lose a soulmate. No one stopped to think how drastically everything fell apart around me, and you all expect me to cope right away! How?!”
“I am carrying a mating bite of a man I barely like!” Taehyung throws his arms up in the air, “your packleader ordered for him to fuck me and get me to 'behave,' so I do not ruin other innocent omegas! I am sorry if I am still trying to wrap my mind around all this!”
“Please, go away,” Taehyung points at the door, “do not come over because no, I am not going to be the perfect omega and no, I will not hear your opinions on it. Please.”
Jin lets out a shaky breath before he nods curtly and walks out. Namjoon and Hoseok following behind.
Taehyung drags himself to the bedroom and slumps down on the bed. He hides his face in his palms, silent sobs wrecking through his body.
“Beomseok, you promised to hold a celebratory dinner after we mate,” Taehyung cries, “promised to take me on a trip. Why did you leave alone?”
He is not sure when he falls asleep. He is not sure for how long he sleeps. He wakes up to the sound of someone in the kitchen, and he frowns. Taehyung gets out of the bedroom to see Jin in the kitchen.
He frowns, “did you not leave?”
Jin nods, “you did not close the door.”
Then Jin holds his hands up, “which is not a complaint!”
Taehyung stares, “what are you doing here?”
“Cooking,” Jin answers him, “you need to have some food and the packhouse servings are not as much as you should eat after mating. So, I am here to the rescue.”
“What part of I kicked you out, and now you are to be angry on me and spread gossip about me, you do not understand?” Taehyung comes to sit on the stool, watching the omega light the fire.
Jin chuckles, “all of it. As much as I enjoy gossip, you are not that interesting.”
Taehyung watches the omega, “why?”
Jin hums, “why, what?”
Taehyung shrugs, “why are you doing this?”
Jin puts a pot on the clay-oven, humming, “because, you need to eat,” he looks at Taehyung, “and you are right. Too much is going on for you. Let me take some load off of you.”
Taehyung blames the woods in the oven for the water that gathers in his eyes. He wipes it furiously, looking resolutely at the fire.
Jin cooks, not asking Taehyung to help or anything. Taehyung tries. He washes the vegetables, brings in the water, cleans the supplies.
Jin leaves after making the dinner, “just serve it when Jungkook comes home.”
Taehyung watches the omega go and goes to the kitchen. He serves himself his food, eats and goes to sleep.
It is the next morning, he wakes up to find the food right where he left it.
Jungkook did not come home. The entire night.
Taehyung frowns, looking around. He is not sure what he should do. He is not sure where the alpha is.
Taehyung shrugs, going to pick up his clothes to go to the river for a bath. The pack members watch him, steal glances.
“What did you expect?” an omega whispers, sitting by the riverbank, “an omega like him, of course the alpha is having an affair.”
Taehyung places the clothes by the river and slowly steps inside, ignoring those words.
“Jungkook deserved so much better than this ruined omega.”
Taehyung takes the bath, wears his clothes and walks back to his hut. He busies himself with the chores. Cleaning and fixing the things around the hut. By the time he is done, it is already evening. Jungkook does not come home that night either.
On the third day, Jimin comes over to say Jungkook is at the rut house. Spending his rut there in one of those rooms.
“Do you think he took an omega?” Jimin asks, hesitant, “I do not think so.”
Taehyung chuckles, “well, I did not know he is going through a rut. Who cares?”
Jimin watches him, “I would if it was my alpha.”
Taehyung picks on those loose threads on the bedsheet, “he is not my alpha.”
Jimin reaches, taking Taehyung's hand in his, “but, now he is. You cannot deny it, Tae. Now he is your alpha. Is he not? He is your mate.”
Taehyung pulls his hands away, “I do not care, Chim. I never will. He is my mate, and it is because this pack wanted us to be together. I would not spend my heat with him, I would not help him in his rut. I am glad he took someone else. I am seriously glad he did not come to me.”
Jimin breathes out, “you have to accept it, Tae. Beomseok is gone. He is not going to come back. You have to-”
Taehyung's blood-shot eyes silence Jimin, “do not talk about him. Do not remind me of him. I am trying to forget, do not remind me.”
Jimin sighs, “you cannot forget.”
“All you have to do is accept he is gone,” Jimin takes Taehyung's hands in his, “accept he is gone and move on. At least, try to.”
Taehyung chuckles, “if you ever meet your soulmate, and they are snatched from you like this, you will know then, chim. It is not easy.”
Jimin wipes his face, “I just want to see you happy again.”
Taehyung's lips quiver, “I guess, you will never do.”
Jimin pulls him in for a hug, “I will. I know I will. Things will get better. I know.”
Taehyung does not believe him. He lets Jimin hug him, closing his eyes.
On the fifth day, Jungkook comes home. Taehyung watches the alpha trudge inside the room, going to the wooden racks to take his clothes. Taehyung turns away when the alpha starts to change. Already bathed. He holds his breath when he smells those omegas on Jungkook.
“I do not care if you cheat,” Taehyung sits up, “but it would be nice if you let me know before disappearing for days.”
Jungkook stops, looking over his shoulder at the omega, “cheats…” he rolls the word on his tongue, “cheats on whom, exactly?”
Taehyung stares, “me?”
Jungkook's lips twitch, “on you?” he turns fully to face the omega, “who are you that I have to tell you about my whereabouts? If you are forgetting, I just saved you and your family from the packleader's wrath and that is that. Why do I owe you an explanation?”
Taehyung blinks, “saved us?” he gives a short laugh, “who are you? Some angel?! You got your damn position in this pack. Those omegas you enjoyed during your rut? Yes, those come with the position too. Otherwise, look at you, who would sleep with you?!”
Jungkook arches a brow.
Jungkook snorts, “never had to pull positions for me to get laid, trust me. I am not like your soulmate. Old and unattractive. Omegas tend to throw themselves at me.”
Taehyung snorts, “well, at least he was man enough to spend the ruts alone.”
Jungkook laughs, “what nonsense.”
“Do not tell me he was man enough when he took you to bed before marrying you,” Jungkook laughs, “had his ways with you before committing. He is the reason you are in this position. Do not blame me or try to be snarky with me. Did you get it?”
Taehyung sucks in a breath, “do not even take his name from your mouth! Do not even try to act like you are anywhere near what he was! You are nothing but a pathetic excuse of an alpha. If it was not my bad luck, I would not even spare you a glance, forget marrying you!”
“Well,” Jungkook steps up to him, “that is the point, is it not?” his voice dips, “you believe it or not, want it or not, you are married to me. Mated to me. You know what is sadder?” Jungkook reaches, his arm sneaking around Taehyung’s waist, jerking him forward, “you are mine.”
Taehyung leans back, trying to maintain some distance with the alpha while looking at that face, “no wonder you were called a pup by him. You are so childish—”
Jungkook pulls the neckline of Taehyung's shirt down, thumb pressing over the mating mark, “it must feel horrible to know the one you are bound to is not bound to you, huh?”
Taehyung’s throat bobs, “I am not bound to you!”
Jungkook smirks, “but, you are. The mark says so.”
“Also, calling me childish?” Jungkook chuckles, “what maturity did you show when you went to bed with him? Do not call me a pup when you act like one.”
Taehyung grasps the alpha's shirt, “I love him! I wanted him! He wanted me! I do not see why I owe you an answer for it!”
Jungkook shakes his head, “no, I do not need answers. I know what you are. Do not, for a second, try to act smart or cocky with me. I married you because you were a profitable deal to me. Unlike you, I thought this through. So, do us both a favour and shut up.”
“You are nothing but a deal I made,” Jungkook chews out, eyes hardening, “I will not sit and listen to your tantrums or give you excuses for doing whatever I do. I do not ask you how you spent your days, you will not ask me how I spent mine. Is that clear?”
Jungkook lets Taehyung go, “I did not cheat on you. Not when I do not even consider you as my mate or vice versa. Please refrain yourself from talking to me. I have zero tolerance for your tantrums.”
Taehyung balls his hands beside himself, “you are just as I knew you to be.”
“Selfish, rude, desperate, cunning!” Taehyung screams, “you are nothing but-”
Jungkook scoffs, “what, you expected someone better to marry you? After how your precious alpha left you?”
Taehyung picks up the vase from the bedside table and throws it at Jungkook, “shut up!”
“Do not take his name! Do not ever utter his name from your rotten mouth!” Taehyung watches Jungkook dodge the vase, listens to it crash on the floor, “you will never understand him because you are nothing like him!”
“I am glad I am not like him,” Jungkook murmurs, “stupid of you to think I will ever be like him. Bedding an omega when he was not even of age,” Jungkook crosses his arms over his chest, “loving or not, it was wrong. You see it or not, it was wrong. I will never be him.”
“He was too old to not know what he was doing,” Jungkook whispers, “he was too mature to not know what he was putting you up for. Of course, I am not him. I would never put my omega in a place where others get a chance to point a finger at them. Of course, I am not him.”
“I loved him, I trusted it-” Taehyung stops when Jungkook gives him a small smile.
“That is the point,” Jungkook nods, “he should have stopped it. You surely trusted him enough to know better. You trusted him, and that is why he should have not done that.”
“Also,” Jungkook wipes his face, tiredly yawning in his fist, “not that you care, or I owe it to you, I did not spend my rut with someone else. I rented a room because clearly I cannot have it here. The omegas,” his nose twists, “those beds smell of different omegas. Not me.”
Jungkook takes a step back, “do not know why I had to tell you this when your alpha spent all his ruts in that house.”
Taehyung looks away, “as you said, he was older. He grew up way before me. Of course, he needed a partner to go through his ruts.”
Jungkook laughs, “oh, lord.”
Jungkook laughs some more, “do you hear yourself?! He needed a partner to bear through his rut? That is so not true! If he did not want to, he would not have to.”
Taehyung glares, “I knew, and I told him to take those helps because I could not help him! No?!”
“He did spend his ruts alone when he found out I am his soulmate, but after two or so, it was getting too painful! So, I asked him to take help.”
Jungkook watches him, “was getting... too painful?”
Taehyung nods, face heating up, “yes! The knot hurts!”
Jungkook wants to say he never took someone during his rut. That he was waiting for his soulmate. That, it does not hurt. That, he does not feel pain. But Taehyung watches him with those large, innocent eyes, and Jungkook cannot break that trust Taehyung has for his alpha.
“It hurts, right?” Taehyung asks, voice so utterly fragile.
Jungkook's throat bobs, he nods, “yes,” he watches how relief washes over Taehyung's face, “it hurts.”
It hurts. To watch Taehyung so madly in love. To know you were created for someone, but they were not for you.
Jungkook's chest hurts. He cannot tell Taehyung that Taehyung is his soulmate. Not tell Taehyung that he was made for Taehyung too. Just... Taehyung was not made for him.
It just does not make sense. How Jungkook's soulmate is Taehyung, but Jungkook is not his soulmate.
It hurts to know he was cursed since birth. To bear a one-sided bond. To bear the curse of the moon goddess, who did not write his mate for him. Who already wrote his story where his love would never be reciprocated.
It surely hurts. Jungkook made his peace with it.
a/n — there are some confusion with tae being underage and all. Let me clear it out. When he slept with Beomseok, he was underage (17 y/o). Beomseok was 9 years older so, obviously, he was not. Now, Tae is not underage. It happened once, and it was years ago.
Also, it happened a few years ago. The pack members did not say anything or protested because they feared Beomseok and his position. Now that he is gone, it is easy to target Tae. That is all. I hope I cleared it out if it was a confusion.
None of them are underage now.
Jungkook turns away from the omega, leaving the room.
“Where are you going?” Taehyung asks after him.
Jungkook stops, “need to clean the mess you made on the floor. Do not move, or you will step on the broken glasses.”
Taehyung stands, watches the alpha clean the floor up.
“I will go on hunting tomorrow,” Jungkook says to him, “the pack is kind of waiting for me to throw a celebratory dinner after the mating.”
Taehyung's eyes fill with tears when he remembers Beomseok was to throw one. He looks away to wipe his eyes.
“I do not wish to be there.”
“That is okay,” Jungkook shrugs, “you do whatever you want to. I told you, you are on your own. I will not demand anything of you.”
Taehyung watches him, “the feast is for us mating, though. They would expect-”
“I really do not care what they expect,” Jungkook turns away, “if +
+ something makes you uncomfortable, you do not have to do it.”
Taehyung watches the alpha leave the room. His eyes follow the alpha's retreating back until he cannot see Jungkook anymore.
There are a few words that echo in his mind, and he sits down on the bed, dazed.
“𝐷𝑖𝑠𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑓𝑜𝑟𝑡 𝑖𝑠 𝑛𝑜𝑡𝘩𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑡𝘩𝑒 𝑓𝑒𝑎𝑟 𝑜𝑓 𝑢𝑛𝑘𝑛𝑜𝑤𝑛. 𝑊𝘩𝑒𝑛 𝑦𝑜𝑢 𝑘𝑛𝑜𝑤 𝑖𝑡, 𝑖𝑡 𝑔𝑒𝑡𝑠 𝑏𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑒𝑟. 𝑇𝑟𝑦 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝑚𝑒, 𝑇𝑎𝑒.”
Taehyung lies down on his side, silent tears rolling out of his eyes. He misses Beomseok so much.
Taehyung is not sure when he falls asleep. He is not sure how long he stays asleep. He wakes up to the quilt pulled over him and the pillow under his head. He rolls over, dreading the alpha's presence, but Jungkook is not there.
Jungkook does not sleep beside him.
The alphas set out on hunting every week. To bring in some meat for the household. The packleader does not go, as he must be protected at all cost. The other alphas share their hunts with the packhouse.
Taehyung watches from his hut, how omegas gather around, waiting.
Their alphas are by their side. They are talking among themselves. Some are hugging, kissing between their smiles. Taehyung watches how the pack leader waits. He thinks how Beomseok was always so excited to go hunting. Telling Taehyung how he would bring in the best meat for him.
He wipes his eyes, blinking back the tears. He watches Jungkook walk up to the pack leader and bow to the man. The man pats his back, pointing at Namjoon who has already shifted.
The leader nods at something Jungkook says before the alpha goes to the front of the line.
Taehyung watches Jungkook go down on his hands and knees. His eyes close, head bowing. Taehyung holds his breath, watching the loose hanbok the alpha wears start to fill, then struggle to stay on him while the furs start to grow on the alpha, his hands and feet getting covered...
The hanbok tears to shreds when the alpha's wolf finally leaps out of him. Taehyung chokes on a whimper when he sees the black wolf. Jungkook is large, one of the biggest wolves in their packs. Right after Namjoon's grey wolf. The alpha howls, inviting the others to shift.
Taehyung turns away, closing his eyes. The alphas leave the pack after shifting and Taehyung knows the omegas will be busy preparing for the feast that night. He goes back to his hut and tries to sleep again. Nowadays that is all he is doing. Sleeping and trying to rush the time.
He gets up when he hears the knock on the door of his hut. When he goes to open it, there are omegas lining in front of his hut. He frowns, confused.
“Why are you all here?” Taehyung wonders.
One of the omegas, Hyesung, smiles sweetly at him, “it is the tradition of the pack.”
Taehyung frowns, “what tradition?”
Hyesung gives him a pointed look, “you know, Taehyung. Your alpha is throwing a feast. The omega is supposed to hold the celebration, and we are here to help you in the preparation and then we will dress you up for the night.”
Taehyung wants to slam the door on their faces, but he tries to be polite, “I do not know how to cook-”
“That is okay,” Hyesung waves his hand, “I will cook. You just get dressed.”
Taehyung shakes his head, “listen, I am in no mood for this.”
Hyesung's smile dims, “Taehyung…”
“I know you do not want to, but alpha does not deserve this,” Hyesung whispers, his eyes a little glossy, “for his honour you should do it. He deserved a better omega. I know you are not better, but try to be.”
Taehyung goes still, eyes on Hyesung, and Hyesung watches him back.
He breathes out a small laugh, “it seems like you wanted to be that 'better omega,' for him, Hyesung,” Taehyung tilts his head, “how about you do that and stop lecturing me? I will not get ready or take part in any more of this pack's ridiculous traditions.”
He closes the door.
Taehyung hears the murmurs right behind the door and sighs.
“Leave before I really throw whatever I have at my disposal at your faces,” Taehyung grits out, “you know the pack leader's son is my best friend and I will get away with it. Right?”
He smirks when the murmurs fade.
Taehyung sleeps the day away. To his irritation, there is a knock that wakes him up. Taehyung goes to open the door to Jungkook this time. The alpha is bloody, carrying his portion of the hunt, and Taehyung holds back a grunt.
“You are not carrying that lamb inside like that!”
Jungkook rolls his eyes, “how do you want me to bring back the hunt? Cooked on fancy plates?”
Taehyung watches the alpha take the raw meat to the kitchen, holds his breath while Jungkook starts to clean it.
“I will vomit,” Taehyung holds his mouth, “oh, lord!”
“Please do it elsewhere,” Jungkook replies, adding salt to the meat after he washes it, “I need my house clean.”
Taehyung watches the alpha store the meat in the underground storage space before standing up. Jungkook looks around.
“Get me a towel,” he sighs, “I need a bath.”
“If I go anywhere near you, I will vomit all over you,” Taehyung warns.
Jungkook gives him a look, “you want me to go inside the bedroom to get my clothes and a towel?”
Taehyung does not. He marches inside to bring the alpha is clothes.
“Come with me,” Jungkook sighs.
“Where am I going?” Taehyung blinks.
Jungkook waves his hand, “to the river. You need to take a bath too. According to the tradition-”
“I said to your omega friend,” Taehyung grits out, “I am not doing this!”
Jungkook watches him, “which omega friend?”
Taehyung gapes, “how many do you have?”
Jungkook shrugs, “too many. No idea who you mean.”
“Hyesung,” Taehyung curses, “he was here. Being a pest!”
Jungkook's face lights up, “ahhh! Hyesung! Right, okay,” he shrugs, “no idea who that is. Come along.”
“Why am I going with you?!” Taehyung grips the clothes in his hands, “I told you that I will not take part in this celebration.”
Jungkook rubs his temple, “listen, I do not give a rat's ass about this celebration either. But, free food and free drinks. I think it is a win.”
“Just,” Jungkook stops, thinking, “just stop seeing it as a mating celebration and see it as a celebration of some sorts. Enjoy. Who cares about tradition? Just go out, eat, drink and dance. Your best friend will be there. No? Now come with me, you need a bath. You stink.”
Taehyung gapes, jaw loosening, “I stink?! You are sure it is me?! You are covered in blood! I am sure it is you-”
Jungkook takes a step towards Taehyung, “either you come along or I hug you with blood all over me. Then you will have to. Choose.”
Taehyung marches out of the hut.
“Do not even dare to look at me!” Taehyung slowly gets inside the river, dipping in it, “I swear, you will regret it!”
“I know I will regret if I look at you, not a vision at all,” Jungkook swims, washing the blood off of his skin, “thank you for the heads-up though.”
Jungkook dips into the water, breaking the surface after a few seconds. He splashes water everywhere and Taehyung curses, trying not to get water in his hair. He glares at the alpha.
“Stop acting like an overenthusiastic pup!” Taehyung splashes some water at Jungkook.
Jungkook swims closer, circles Taehyung, where the omega stands. Taehyung is splashed when Jungkook swims too close, intentionally flapping his legs too hard. Taehyung reaches out, grabbing the alpha's hair to give it a rough tug. Like someone would do to their pups.
Jungkook winces, easily grasping Taehyung's wrist to free himself. Taehyung sucks in a shocked breath when Jungkook twists his hand behind his back, pressing up against him.
“Try that again,” Jungkook whispers in Taehyung's ear, “come on,” he breathes out, “let's see, omega.”
Taehyung looks over his shoulder at Jungkook, “you cannot call me by my rank. I am older than you!”
Jungkook arches a brow, “now you want to follow traditions?”
Taehyung squirms in his hold, “let me go!”
Jungkook chuckles, “free yourself. Let's see who is the pup here.”
Taehyung sees the omegas coming towards the river. All of them dressed in their bathing clothes. Taehyung looks over his shoulder at Jungkook.
“They will see us!” Taehyung grits out.
Jungkook hums, eyes boring on Taehyung's face, “let them. Who cares?”
Taehyung watches Hyesung at the front of the group, curses, “I do! They'll spread more gossip about me!”
Jungkook chuckles, “unlike the last alpha you were seen with,” he ignores how Taehyung gasps when he turns the omega to face him, “I am your mated alpha. No one would dare.”
Taehyung goes still when the alpha ducks, face burying against his throat. Taehyung's arms rest on Jungkook's shoulders, nails digging there when he feels the alpha's tongue on his mating bite. He whines, trying to hold back a shudder that runs down his spine.
He hears the gasps from the omegas and closes his eyes, “Jungkook,” he pleads, “they are watching.”
Jungkook looks up, away from Taehyung and up at the omegas with a sweet smile, “oh, we did not notice you! Sorry!”
Taehyung's face heats up, he does not dare to look at them.
“No, it is okay, alpha,” Hyesung's voice is heard, flustered, “we were just-”
“Are you Hyesung?” Jungkook asks, arm sneaking around Taehyung to hold him closer, “you went to our hut?”
Hyesung sounds hesitant, “y-yes. To tell Taehyung to get dressed to welcome you properly.”
Jungkook buries his face against Taehyung's throat again, eyes on the omega, “oh, he is welcoming me very properly,” he nips on the mating bite, “next time do not bother him, okay? Otherwise,” Jungkook gives Hyesung a smile, “you have to answer to me. All of you. Am I clear?”
The chorus of agreement makes Taehyung hide his face against Jungkook's neck. He closes his eyes, tears burning behind his eyelids.
No one ever confronted those gossip mongers for him. It was always clear that he will face those and ignore those. Learn to. At least.
Taehyung hears them slowly walk off to a different side of the river for their baths, leaving the two of them alone.
Jungkook lets go of him as soon as they are gone, “sorry for touching you without asking,” the alpha swims closer to the edge, “had to set them straight.”
Taehyung watches the alpha get out of the water, picking up the towel. He turns away, taking a dip in the water himself.
Jungkook changes into his clothes. He turns away when Taehyung gets out of the water, changing.
They walk back to the hut side by side. In complete silence.
Jungkook dresses for the night, looks at the omega on the bed, “I will ask Jimin to get your food here.”
Taehyung nods, looking anywhere but at him. Jungkook leaves the hut when he is done, closing the door behind himself.
Taehyung lies down, feeling how his mating bite burns.
“So, he is not coming?” Namjoon asks, sipping his ale, “to join the celebration?”
Jungkook watches the pack members dance, shaking his head, “no. He does not want to.”
Namjoon watches him, “you really should have not agreed to this wedding, Kook.”
Jungkook knows. He knows it.
“I worry, okay?” Namjoon rubs Jungkook's shoulder, “I worry about the two of you. He just lost his soulmate. The one he loved so much,” he sighs, “what if your soulmate comes along now? What would you do?”
Jungkook's soulmark burns. He sips his ale, hissing under his breath.
His soul mark is right on his wrist. Where he hides it with so many bands.
A mark of denial.
It formed when Taehyung touched him there after Jungkook presented as an alpha. Right after his first rut.
While soulmates get half a heart, he got a cross.
While soulmates hearts complete each other, his will never be because he did not get one. Jungkook looks down at where the mark is. He rubs his thumb over the mark, underneath all those bands. He smiles to himself.
“I am sure my soulmate will never seek me out,” he whispers.
“I am okay with it,” Jungkook speaks under his breath, he talks mostly to himself, “I am fine with not having them. Not,” he frowns, “feeling that connection. Not being anyone's special someone.”
Namjoon watches him, “hey, you are not going to do this. Listen to me, okay?”
Namjoon takes Jungkook's hand in his, pats it, “a soul mark is the moon goddess' way of saying this person is made for you. The most compatible. Right?”
Namjoon smiles, “sometimes, I think it would be better if we got to choose the ones we want. You know?”
“That way, it will be just us deciding for ourselves and not forced into it by some deity who is not even visible for the half of the month,” he laughs, “just… I think, if love blooms freely, it is the strongest bond. You do not need a goddess choosing that for you.”
Jungkook looks down at his wrist, “what if one is in love with their soulmate, but that soulmate is not made for them? What if the bond is not reciprocated?”
Namjoon stops, his calculative eyes on Jungkook, “then, in most cases, the bond is severed. That pain is not worth it.”
Jungkook looks at the alpha, “so, what if I tell you that you are my soulmate?” he arches a brow, “and, now that you and Jin hyung found each other, shall I break it?”
Namjoon laughs, “well, you did have a crush on me growing up. I would believe you.”
Jungkook laughs too.
He pats Jungkook's back, “is that it?” his smile dims, “your soul mark?”
“Not you,” Jungkook gives Namjoon a teasing smile, “surely not you, hyung. I would drown Jin hyung to take his place then.”
“I heard that!” Jin swats his head, “I am right here, brat!”
“Whoever it is, just break the bond,” Namjoon shrugs, sipping his ale, “one-sided marks hurt the most. It is cursed.”
Jin leans on Jungkook's shoulder, “I would agree, but I do not know who that omega is or-”
“No one,” Jungkook sighs, “it is not me. I would say otherwise.”
“I just wish you found them,” Namjoon closes his eyes, “then you would not have to marry Taehyung. Both of you are in this love less marriage-”
“Give it a rest,” Jin swats his mate, “it is not the last day of his life. Who knows? They can fall in love? Find love in each other?”
Namjoon looks at Jin, “but Tae is not even willing to try-”
“It takes time, alpha!” Jin sounds tired, “he just lost his soulmate. It takes time to move on and heal. Then he can give love a chance again. You know?”
“I do not need him to try,” Jungkook murmurs, “trust me.”
“It is okay,” Jungkook shrugs, “I do not care if he tries or not. I am perfectly fine.”
Jin and Namjoon go to open their mouths when the murmurs around them rise. Jungkook looks over to see the reason and freezes.
Jimin comes to the celebration, holding Taehyung's hand in his.
Taehyung is dressed in a white hanbok, his hair tied in a bun. He looks around with hesitant eyes, and Jimin drags him up to the circle where Jungkook sits.
“I got your omega,” Jimin drops Taehyung beside Jungkook, “congratulations for the mating.”
“What?” Jimin shrugs, “that is why this celebration. I just said it. Anyway,” he waves his hand, “I will go and drink. Then search Taemin and dance! Bye.”
Taehyung watches Jimin go, ignores Jungkook's eyes on him.
“You came?” Jungkook asks.
Taehyung shrugs, “Jimin.”
“He would not let me stay home,” Taehyung looks down at his hands, “so,” he looks at Jungkook, “I am not here for you or the stupid celebration.”
Jungkook nods, “good. For a second there, I was starting to feel really special!”
The sarcasm gets him a glare and Jungkook snorts.
“Alpha?” Hyesung comes up, “would you like to dance?”
Jungkook looks at the bonfire, watches the pack members dancing around it and back at the omega.
“I,” he hesitates, everyone knows Jungkook loves to dance, “uhm, sure.”
Taehyung watches Jungkook get up to leave.
Taehyung remembers how him and Boemseok would dance together in these gatherings. How the alpha would take him away from the circles to make out, both of them too spent for the night. He remembers the alpha asking him to stay over. So many times. His vision blurs.
He remembers the alpha bringing him hunts. Getting him courting gifts. He remembers the alpha teaching him how to kiss, he remembers how the alpha helped him hide those marks he would leave on Taehyung's skin. He remembers how he would say he loved Taehyung.
It all hurts now.
Taehyung cannot listen to the merriment around him, cannot see the dances around him, and cannot hear the songs the members sing around him without remembering the alpha. He gets up, grateful that no one is paying him any attention, and runs out of the celebration circle.
Taehyung stops by Boemseok's hut. He gets inside the abandoned hut and drops on his knees. Tears roll out of his eyes while he looks around. The place is just the same. The pack leader kept it as it was, thinking he will give it to someone else when the time comes.
“I told you not to go,” Taehyung whimpers, “I told you not to go to that search. I told you to stay put! Why would you not listen to me?!” He cries, “I told you it is dangerous! I was worried. I was feeling it. I knew something would happen!”
Taehyung hears the footsteps.
“Taehyung,” Jungkook hesitates by the door of the hut, “what are you-”
“Do not set a foot inside!” Taehyung roars, turns on his hands and knees to glare at the alpha, “do not tint his presence with yours! You are the reason he died! It was supposed to be you!”
Jungkook frowns, “what?”
Taehyung feels his legs trembling while he stands up, “yes,” he wipes his eyes, “that night? For that search? You were supposed to lead it!”
Jungkook steps inside the hut, “I know. I just-”
“Fell ill,” Taehyung's lips curl, “or, pretended to be ill!”
Jungkook glares at the omega, “I would never run from my responsibilities like that! I was ill! I just fell ill. Why would I not go if it was my duty?!”
“Because you knew they were dangerous!” Taehyung shouts, “you knew you would not come back! You just let him go instead!”
“Are you making sense to yourself?!” Jungkook grits out, “are you really making sense to yourself right now?! How would I know he would not win? How would I know the pack's most fearsome fighter would lose like that? It was not my fault!”
“Fault or not, it was you who was supposed to be on his spot!” Taehyung cries, “do you even know how much it hurts to look at you and accept you as my alpha when I know you are the reason my actual mate died?!” he takes a step forward, “it was supposed to be you that night!”
Jungkook knows Taehyung needed the time to mourn. He knows the omega got married to him just after two days of his mate's death. He knows the omega was forced into this because his family was facing the backlash and his packleader almost threw him out of the pack. He understands.
But it still hurts. It still hurts to hear Taehyung say it like that. He breathes out a small smile.
“It was supposed to be me, I guess,” he nods, “it was supposed to be me, but he took it for himself, I guess,” Jungkook whispers, “what do you want me to do then? Now?”
“I wish you could bring him back,” Taehyung hugs himself, “you have no idea how much it hurts. A broken bond. You have no idea how much a soulmate hurts when they are left alone while their mate dies. You will never understand the pain of a one-sided, cursed mark.”
Jungkook watches him, “at least your soulmate loved you. He died loving you.”
“𝑌𝑜𝑢𝑟 𝑠𝑜𝑢𝑙𝑚𝑎𝑡𝑒 𝑑𝑖𝑑 𝑛𝑜𝑡 𝑤𝑖𝑠𝘩 𝑦𝑜𝑢 𝑤𝑒𝑟𝑒 𝑑𝑒𝑎𝑑 𝑖𝑛𝑠𝑡𝑒𝑎𝑑.”
Jungkook goes to sit on the wooden chair, trying to ease the pain his wrist feels, it hurts.
“I wish it was me,” Jungkook whispers, “every day. Trust me. I do,” he looks down at the wristbands he wears, “I look at you and I wish it was me. It is a guilt I live with. That night,” his face crumbles, “I did not think he would not come back. I did not know. Of course.”
“If I could, I would trade lives,” Jungkook buries his face in his palms, “I lost my everything. I have no one to come home to. He did,” his voice wavers, “he had you. He had a future. I do not know, okay?” he looks up at Taehyung who is watching him, “I guess, I am cursed.”
“I was supposed to go with my parents,” Jungkook chuckles, “I was supposed to be in that carriage with them when it rolled off the hill. I did not. I lived. Then, here,” he waves his hand, “I know it was supposed to be me.”
Taehyung sinks on the floor, trembling.
“I am being selfish,” Taehyung whispers, “I know. It is in no one's hands who die or who live, I just,” he squeezes his eyes shut, “I go to sleep, I wake up thinking, dreaming about him, then I see you, and it all comes crashing back. It just never stops. The pain never stops!”
“Then my parents are like you should move on, have some pups with your alpha, and you will forget about him,” Taehyung's face twists, “the packleader tells me how lucky I am to have you after having him. As if I am hopping from one luck to another. He tells me to be fine...”
“The omegas are reminding me how I should just forget about what happened and accept you. My own mother is telling me to just let you have me,” his face crumbles, “then I will know it is all fine. It all feels so suffocating. Everyone has a solution without knowing the problem.”
“The problem is I wanted to be on my own,” Taehyung hugs himself, “I did not want to ruin your life or mine by marrying you. I wanted to join the medics of the pack and help them. I do not wish to be a mate anymore. I wish to mourn for the rest of my life. They did not let me.”
“I wanted to be treated as his widower,” Taehyung whispers, “I know we did not mate. I know we were not married. But, I wanted that. No one cared what I want in my life. I cannot digest the fact that everyone got a say in my life except for me. It hurts. This helplessness hurts.”
“And, it does not end here,” Taehyung gives a hollow laugh, “a year, I give it a year before they will start pestering us for pups. As if they would raise them. As if it is, in any way, their business. I fear that. I fear that pressure. I fear that future. I do not want pups.”
“Not anymore,” Taehyung rubs his hands over his arms, “the thought of someone touching me, the thought of having one's pups who is not him,” his face crumbles, “I cannot do it. I also know, you deserve all that. A life where your omega is not me. Someone normal. You know?”
“I do not know how to cook. I barely have any interest in house decorations. I do not care how presentable I look when my alpha looks at me. I do not really give a damn about things I know I should be bothered about. So, you see, I am no fit for anyone anymore.”
“I should care about your hunts, I should be presentable when guests come over. I should join you in that feast, I would if it was him but with him, those wishes died too,” Taehyung looks at Jungkook with tearful eyes, “I had my mate and I lost him. I do not wish for another.”
“Then be what you wished for,” Jungkook looks at the omega with a thoughtful expression, “the medic you wanted to be. Who would stop you?”
Taehyung chuckles, “a married omega is not for that department. You know. I am to not touch any other alpha or get myself dirty like that.”
“That is if your alpha has a problem with it,” Jungkook shrugs, “I do not.”
“I hate how this pack makes it sound like an omega's own self dies after marrying. As if I need your permission to do things. I should not need it!” Taehyung curses.
Jungkook chuckles, “well, I know.”
“But, let's solve the small problems before we go for the bigger prejudices,” Jungkook waves his hands, “if I ask the pack leader to let you join the medics, he has to. I am your guardian now. He gets no say in it.”
Taehyung snorts, “you are younger than me. My guardian.”
Jungkook arches a brow, “well, I am your alpha now. So, rank wise, yes, I am your guardian.”
Taehyung looks away, “what do you get from this?”
Jungkook snorts, “you out of my house, most of the time. I get a peaceful hut. What?” he holds his hands up, “it is true.”
“Also, you snore so loudly,” Jungkook nods, “I get to sleep peacefully while you go and handle all those bloodied wolves,” he makes a face, “I will be cooking and cleaning while you handle those chores outside. It is a good idea. Also,” he looks around the hut, “I have an idea.”
“What?” Taehyung asks, looking at the alpha, while Jungkook looks around.
“Stay here,” Jungkook looks at him, “mourn. Take as long as you need to mourn. I will not disturb you. No one will. I will talk to the leader to get you this hut. Just for yourself,” his lips twitch...
“Keep his soul awake at night while you snore,” Jungkook gets up, “I also get my bed back-”
“Why would you do all this?” Taehyung wonders.
Jungkook looks down at him, a small smile on his lips, “I just really want you out of my hut.”
Taehyung gives him a look.
Jungkook goes to the door, opens it, “I got to mourn my mate for years,” Jungkook looks out, his vision hazy, “and, it still hurts. I want you to have your space too. I know, it might hurt forever, trust me,” he looks over his shoulder at Taehyung, “I will give you a forever.”
“Your soulmate...” Taehyung hesitates, “they did not die. Did they?”
“No,” Jungkook looks ahead, closing his eyes, “I died for them.”
He walks out, closes the door behind himself. The wolf tears through him while he starts a run, ignores the celebration still continuing.
The pack leader agrees, much to Taehyung's chagrin and confusion. He does not take anything except for his clothes from Jungkook's hut to move into Boemseok's. The first night there, Taehyung just sits on the bed and cries, talks to himself about how he pictured it different.
The next day he spends decorating the place. The way he pictured it. The furnitures, the rooms. The kitchen. He moves around things, makes room for his things, and builds a home he always wanted in that hut.
He denies help when Jin comes over to cook, tells the omega he is fine.
He does not want anyone in his hut. He does not need anyone in that hut. Taehyung cooks whatever he can manage, eats, cleans and sleeps. For a week he just does that.
The next week, Jungkook comes over. Taehyung opens the door to the alpha and hesitates to let him in.
Jungkook holds out a chit, “the leader agreed to your service. You will treat the omegas and betas,” he shakes his shoulders, “he would let me push this far. I tried.”
Taehyung takes the chit, reads it, “okay.”
Jungkook nods, “all the best,” he turns to leave.
“You can come in,” Taehyung stops when the alpha halts on his steps, “I mean,” he looks away when Jungkook looks over his shoulder at him, “it is almost dinner time. I made some food.”
Jungkook gives him a small smile, “no, it is okay. I am going on patrolling duty.”
Taehyung watches him, “so, you ate?”
Jungkook nods, “yes. I did. Jin hyung fed me too much,” he looks over Taehyung's shoulder, “and I would not like to tint the nest.”
Taehyung grips the door, “n-nest?”
Jungkook looks at Taehyung and back at the hut, “you made one. No?”
Taehyung feels the ache in his chest when he shakes his head, “I could not,” he whispers, “I could not move those furnitures. They are too heavy. I just,” he goes quiet.
Jungkook stops, looks at him, “I can help,” he shrugs when Taehyung looks at him, “if you want, of course.”
Taehyung shakes his head, “they are too heavy for you too.”
“I know they are, Taehyung,” Jungkook sighs, “you and me, we can do it together. Help each other.”
Taehyung watches him, “are you sure?”
Jungkook nods, “of course. I am sure. I will drop by tomorrow after work.”
Taehyung holds the door, “is it not going to be weird? I mean,” he bites down on his lip, “I am making the nest with my alpha's things and you,” he looks down at his feet, “you know what I mean.”
Jungkook chuckles, “it would if I had feelings for you. I do not. It is okay.”
Jungkook steps back, “I will be here tomorrow.”
Taehyung watches the alpha leave. He closes the door behind Jungkook and looks around the place. If Jungkook really comes, he will have a nest by this time tomorrow.
Jungkook wears scent blockers the next day when he comes over. Taehyung breathes a little easy when he realizes Jungkook is trying not to leave his scent on anything. He feels much better.
“Where do you want everything?” Jungkook asks, looking around, “the bed and all.”
“The bed by the window,” Taehyung points at the other furnitures, “the wardrobe there and then these things around the bed in a circle?”
Jungkook nods, “okay,” he goes to move the bed.
“Wait, you have something to say?” Taehyung stops him, “any input?”
Jungkook shrugs, “it is your nest, Taehyung. You will live in it. What input? I am here for the help. I do what you say.”
Taehyung nods, “oh, okay,” he points at the window, “let's move the bed then.”
They move the bed together, setting the other furnitures around it.
Taehyung makes the bed while Jungkook watches. Taehyung places the pillows, makes them in a circle, then looks at the clothes in pile by the racks. Jungkook brings those over, without Taehyung asking. He stands guard as Taehyung moves around on the bed.
“He would love it?” Taehyung wonders aloud, looking at the nest, “right?”
Jungkook watches the omega, “yes, he would,” he looks around, “you did pretty well.”
Taehyung smiles to himself, “wanted to do this since I presented. Wanted him to help me. Our first nest.”
Jungkook watches him, wants to ask if the alpha did not build a nest for him when they slept together. He does not ask. He is no one to ask that.
“Do you want me to get his blankets?” Jungkook asks, “they still smell of him.”
Taehyung nods, “please. Thanks.”
Taehyung watches Jungkook bring them over, slowly layering them on the bed. Taehyung stops moving when Jungkook stars to place them around him. He sits and watches the alpha until he is done.
“Thank you for helping,” Taehyung murmurs, “I do not know what else to say.”
Jungkook shrugs, “you do not have to say anything. I will leave now, if everything is done?”
Taehyung thinks, looking around, “his scent will fade with time, you know?” he whispers, “I do not know what would I do then...”
Jungkook pauses, “Well, it will take time.”
He watches the omega's eyes pool with tears and the helplessness grows. He looks around, thinking what else he can do.
Taehyung shrugs, “it is okay, with time, everything fades,” he forces a small smile on his lips, “thank you for the help, Jungkook. It meant a lot.”
Jungkook nods, “when do start working?”
Taehyung shrugs, “today,” he gets off of the bed, “I will be starting today. Why?”
Jungkook shakes his head, “just asking. All the best for the first day.”
Taehyung picks up his shawl, “thank you. I will leave right now.”
Jungkook nods, “okay, I will take your leave.”
Before Taehyung can say anything, Jungkook walks out of the hut and leaves. Taehyung closes the door after the alpha. He looks around the hut, it is finally looking like his home.
Taehyung comes home to a basket of pine cone. He frowns, leaning down to pick up the note attached to one of them.
He reads it while he stands by the door, looking at those cones and back at the chit.
Taehyung notices how the cones are nicely shaped as candles. He can light those. Jungkook did not just pick them up and left them. He made candles out of them. So Taehyung can light them and the scent spreads around him. Taehyung feels his breath catching in his chest.
He goes inside the hut and lights one. Tears brim in his eyes when the candle burns, smells exactly how Beomseok smelt. He breaks down in front of the candle, thinking how he needs these to hold onto his alpha and his memories. He blows the candles out, getting up from the floor.
He goes to sleep with the basket of the pine cones right by his side. He falls asleep to the sight of them and wakes up to them the next morning.
Life for him is surreal since that day. The omegas of the pack leave him alone. The others just ignore him, let him be on his own.
Taehyung works restlessly. He works himself to exhaustion and just comes home to fall dead on his bed. He lights those candles time to time, sits in front of those and watches them burn.
He blows them out when the scent gets too suffocating, when the tears dry in his eyes.
Jungkook does not bother him after that day. He does not see Jungkook anywhere. Taehyung watches their mating bite when he gets ready, watches how it is still sore. How it is still not healed. He knows why. The alpha is not around. The bond is not fully consummated.
He puts ointments on it. Uses the herbs he knows to make some pastes to apply on it. He stays up all night, feeling the pain the mark sends down his veins. His omega seeks the alpha who mated him, and Taehyung fights with that side of him. Almost every night.
Throughout the day it is a dull ache that he ignores but when night comes, he buries himself in Boemseok's scent, the mating bond hurts. The pain intensifies and Taehyung knows his omega searches a different scent. His omega seeks a different warmth. He denies it every morning.
When the pain gets out of control, Taehyung gets out of the room. His nest. He lies down on the carpet near the fireplace, eyes the woods burning. He hates how helpless he feels against his own omega. He hates how he cannot sooth himself or heal this new pain that settles in.
Tonight he is nauseous. The moment he walks inside his room, the mating mark starts to throb. Taehyung shuts the door, coming to kneel by the fireplace. He unfastens the strings that hold his shirt together to see the mark. It is bleeding. The mark's wound opening up.
He cries out when he places his fingers over the wound. He goes to the kitchen. Using the ointments he keeps there. He applies it and slowly the burning starts to fade to that dull ache, but Taehyung knows it will come back. It always does.
“I cannot believe I let you mate me,” he whispers to himself, “and, you are not feeling this. Of course, you are not,” he walks out of the kitchen, “now, what do I do?” he sits on the carpet again, “how do I get rid of this?”
He can break the bond. The thought is there.
But then a different thought hits him, and Taehyung frowns. More alert.
“Why is it hurting so bad?” he wonders, “why...” he looks out of the window, “why is it hurting,” he stares, listens to the howls of the wolves, they are on night duty, he frowns, “where are you?”
He stumbles in his hurry to get up, “Jungkook,” Taehyung runs to the door of his hut, wraps the shawl around himself and rushes out, “where the hell are you?”
He runs down the path to Jungkook's hut. Ignores all the weird stares and almost slams against the hut's door.
The door is closed. Taehyung tugs the lock and then looks around. He sees the next hut and runs to it.
“Jin hyung!” he slams the door, “open up!”
Jin opens the door after a while, sleepy, “Taehyung?” he blinks, “what happened?”
“You know where Jungkook is?” Taehyung asks.
“He went with Namjoon for the hunt, those rogues are back-” Jin stops, “Taehyung!” he screams when Taehyung turns on his heels to run towards the boarder, “Tae, you cannot go to the boarder in your nightwear!”
Taehyung does not hear it. All he hears is rogues. They are back.
The fear starts in the pit of his stomach. It is unnerving and immobilizing. Taehyung ignores how tears are already rolling out of his eyes while he runs down the path that is covered in snow, and he is barefoot. He ignores everyone while he reaches the boarders.
He looks around frantically, with fearful eyes he watches the troops rushing around. He stumbles when someone runs past him, in their hurry to be somewhere.
Taehyung whips around and breaks out into a sob, “hobi hyung!” he grasps the beta, “Jungkook. Where is he-”
The beta holds him up, “he is,” he hesitates, “he is in the medical camp. He got injured,” Hoseok shakes his head, “one of the rogues got him. Nothing too-”
Taehyung runs to the camp, ignoring how Hoseok shouts that he is not allowed there. That is where Boemseok died.
The guards do not grab him but stands in front of him, “you cannot get inside, omega,” one says, “it is for the alphas only.”
Taehyung glares at the guard, “my mate is in there.”
The guard hesitates, “were you contacted-”
Taehyung curses, “let me go!”
Hosoek comes after him.
“Let him, he is with me,” Hoseok holds his hands up and watches Taehyung leap inside as soon as he was permitted.
Taehyung ignores everyone while his eyes search the beds. He rushes from one corner to another until he picks up on that scent.
Jungkook smells of burning woods. Taehyung realizes with a start. He sees the alpha lying on a bed by the window and freezes.
That is why he was falling asleep in front of that fireplace. Jungkook smells like the burning fire itself.
Taehyung slowly walks up to the alpha.
Jungkook is not sleeping. He is lying there, eyes outside through the window. He looks back at Taehyung when he hears the footsteps.
The alpha frowns, “what,” he winces, “what are you doing here?”
Taehyung watches the scar on the alpha's chest. Three long and sharp cuts.
Taehyung goes up to the alpha, watching the scar. A little deeper, it would tear through his organs. He looks at Jungkook's face. Jungkook looks back at him.
The same thing happened to Boemseok. A rogue tore him apart with its paw, the nails digging too deep.
“When,” he gulps, voice too rough, “how...”
Jungkook winces, “I am fine,” he tries to smile, “I think your wish was coming true. Well, was about to, I guess.”
Taehyung feels the fire touch him, burns him where it hurts. His mating mark sizzles, he looks at the alpha.
Jungkook tries to move, “almost got me. I really thought they would, you know?” he chuckles, “I kind of got to their throat first.”
Taehyung slumps down on the bed, looking at the alpha, “you did.”
Jungkook watches him, expression unreadable, “are you sad that I am alive?”
Taehyung sucks in a breath, “no!” he grips the bedsheet, “no, I am,” he looks at the scar, “I,” he said that, he knows he said that, “I was angry, upset,” he looks at Jungkook's face, “I did not mean it. I would not mean it.”
Jungkook arches a brow, “no need to lie now.”
Taehyung feels the ache in his chest, “I would not actually wish death for someone,” his lips quiver, “I know I said those things. You have all the rights to believe them. I said it, but I did not mean it. I was hardly thinking.”
Jungkook sighs, “I thought you would be happy.”
“If you had a working brain, you would know, I did not mean it,” Taehyung looks away, “I am bearing your mark. It would physically hurt me if you died.”
Jungkook chuckles, “worried about yourself?”
Taehyung hums, “of course. Who worries for you?”
Jungkook watches him, “right.”
Taehyung looks at the scar, “did they clean it?”
Jungkook nods, “the helps are really hard-working. They cleaned the scar. Put on some ointment and I will be fine after the potion they are making for me to drink. No worries. This is nothing.”
Taehyung gives a nod.
Jungkook watches him, “are you in your nightwear?”
Taehyung blinks, looking down at himself, “well,” he shrugs, “was really worried about myself and if you were stupid to get yourself killed. Had to reach here quickly, so I can get rid of the mark before that.”
Jungkook's lips twitch when he catches on, “I see,” he nods, “but,” he frowns, thoughtful, “I heard it takes a day or two?”
Taehyung shrugs, “as fast as I can make it.”
Jungkook tries to find Taehyung's eyes, “were you worried for me?”
Taehyung looks anywhere but at him, “no?”
“Are you asking?” Jungkook teases, “me?”
Taehyung glares at his own hands, “well, I was worried about me! Okay? You cannot just go and get yourself killed. You are not single now, are you? You should think of me! I am-”
Jungkook reaches for his hand, taking it in his.
“So, if I was single, I should have gone and got myself-”
“No!” Taehyung finally matches his eyes, “I am not saying that!”
Jungkook arches a brow, “what are you saying then?”
Taehyung does not notice how Jungkook entangle their fingers together, “you hit your head or what?!”
Jungkook clicks his tongue, “you are in your nightwear.”
Taehyung gives him a pointed stare, “what about it?”
Jungkook makes a face, “everyone is looking.”
Taehyung shrugs, “let them.”
Jungkook hums, “or, you can go home now. I am fine. I did not get myself killed. Yes?”
Taehyung looks at the wounds, “it will leave a scar.”
Jungkook looks up at the ceiling, “well, yes. Added to the collection.”
Taehyung's eyes flicker over to his face, “there are more?”
Jungkook snorts, “of course, there are more. I am,” he shrugs, “there are too many.”
Jungkook's eyes are tender, “I am not as skilful fighter as your mate,” he looks out through the window, “he was so good. No one touched him in a fight.”
Taehyung knows. His fingers curl in the bedsheet.
Jungkook sighs, “I was always envious of him.”
Taehyung looks up, “huh?”
Jungkook nods, eyes fixed on the jungle outside, “he had everything I wanted,” the alpha's throat bobs, “skills, position...” a rueful smile curls Jungkook's lips, “you.”
Taehyung sucks in a startled breath, “me?” his breath catches in his chest, “you... you wanted me?”
Jungkook's lips stretch on that smile, “not you,” he looks out of the window again, “a loving mate. I meant.”
Taehyung blows out a breath, “why did not you wait for your soulmate to find you?”
Jungkook hums, “I was not born with one.”
Taehyung frowns, “that is not possible.”
“Every omega is born with a half-heart tattoo somewhere on their body and when they touch their alpha,” Taehyung shrugs, “the other half appears on that alpha. In the same colour, size and shape. I am sure your omega bears one too. You just did not make contact with them yet.”
Jungkook looks down at where his hand is curled around Taehyung's own. He lets out a short laugh before letting the omega go.
“Maybe,” he watches the moon on the sky, “or, maybe I did contact them, but they were just,” he shrugs, “not for me.”
Taehyung does not understand that.
“The moment I touched my alpha, it appeared on his chest,” Taehyung murmurs, “the alpha cannot hide it, you know? It hurts. I saw him crumble on the ground as the shape form on him. It was surreal. I stood there, watching how the silver heart grow on him. Binding us together.”
“I was so happy,” Taehyung smiles down at his hands, “he was so,” he sighs, “he is the hero of this pack. We all always looked at him and thought, the omega who gets to mate him, would be so lucky.”
Jungkook hums, “the omegas would flock him like lost puppies. I saw.”
Taehyung arches a brow, “were you jealous?”
Jungkook gives it some thought, “not really?” he hums, “I mean, I was mostly busy mourning my parents' death growing up. Then I knew I have to fend for myself. So I busied myself with training and studies. I never got the time.”
“I would always rush from one place to another. Training, studies, work,” he makes a face, “I did not get the time to be envious of anyone when I was desperate to make a place here.”
Taehyung watches him, “you were that silent, weird pup in school,” his lips twitch, “you know?”
Jungkook stares, “...what?”
Taehyung nods, “you were always by yourself. A little antisocial. Would always sit by yourself. Growl at anyone who would get near you. I guess, I am talking about when you first joined school.”
Jungkook snorts, “a day after my parents' death.”
Taehyung goes still, “oh.”
Jungkook closes his eyes, a hollow smile on his lips, “my father was respected here. So I got to go to school, but the pack leader made it pretty clear that if I do not perform well, I would not be given education. I was just seven.”
Jungkook blinks up at the ceiling, “was kicked out of my hut because a new family needed it. I was given a choice, the packhouse or to do something of my own,” Jungkook sighs, “the packhouse is so crowded. I stayed there till I was twelve. It was a struggle.”
Taehyung bites on his lower lip, “your hut...”
“I made it,” Jungkook sounds proud, “I know it is not something as good as your parents' house or your mate's hut,” he shrugs, “but I made it when I was twelve and then moved in there. I am proud of it. Really.”
“Joined the guarding troop when I was fifteen,” Jungkook hums, looks at Taehyung, “so, you see, I never got the time to look around and be envious of other alphas who were doing way better than me. I was just struggling to do the best for myself.”
Taehyung looks down at his hands, “I knew your parents died. I would see you in the packhouse whenever I visited chim. You were the luna's butler?”
Jungkook nods, “for some extra money,” he shrugs, “she was kind. She would not make me work hard. I would just follow her around.”
Taehyung thinks, “you,” he frowns, “you were rude after you presented. You suddenly started acting bad with me.”
Jungkook snorts, “you were insufferable. You would order me around. As if your father kept me as his butler. I got tired by then. I grew up, you see.”
“No, you would still comply, after throwing a fit,” Taehyung shrugs, “but after you presented, you just changed. I,” he looks away, “I was so surprised. You just outright told me to mind my business.”
“You were always teasing me?” Jungkook snorts, “I snapped by then.”
Taehyung looks at Jungkook's scar, “you made me cry.”
Jungkook blinks, “what?”
Taehyung nods, “that day, when you told me to mind my business. You made me cry. You were pretty rude.”
Jungkook sighs, “I do not remember...”
Taehyung glares at him, “it was after you presented!”
“I saw you leaving the rut house after your first rut and I ran to you,” Taehyung recalls, “to tell you how I thought you would be a beta and how it feels to present as an alpha,” he shrugs, “I was going to tease you as usual. But I grabbed your hand, and you just froze.”
“Then you were jerking your hand free and looking down at it as if I snapped it,” Taehyung frowns, “you were maybe out of it but when I said something about being an alpha, you just outright screamed at me to leave you alone.”
Jungkook breathes out, “oh,” he laughs, “ohhh.”
Jungkook winces when he laughs, “shit, that,” he lets out a long breath, “I was out of it. Yes. You,” his eyes hold something unreadable, “you have no idea how out of it I was.”
Taehyung watches him, “well, since then you changed completely. Turned so cold and aloof.”
“I grew up,” Jungkook shrugs, “I presented. Was I not supposed to grow up?”
Taehyung looks away, “you were the same with everyone else. Only I got that special treatment, so that is what I am saying.”
Jungkook makes a face, “sorry that your chew toy grew up, Taehyung.”
“So sorry he was not there for your every whim and fit,” Jungkook arches a brow, “you had your alpha by then.”
“I would not ask him to do the things I asked you,” Taehyung gives him a pointed stare, “he was too old for that.”
Jungkook snorts, “like, get your drinks? Food?”
Taehyung pinches his side, “I could not ask him to accompany me to the nearby packs for festivals. I could not ask him to take me home at night when I was scared!”
Jungkook gives him a look, “I would do it because I worked for your best friend's father. God, you were so bratty!”
“Also, you could have easily asked him to accompany you,” Jungkook rubs his temple, “he was your soulmate. He would love to go to those stupid carnivals you would take me to. Or, to take you home. Or, get those seasonal flowers for you when you demanded. He would do it.”
“He was nine years older than me,” Taehyung glares, “he always had so much work, responsibilities-”
“As his soulmate, you were his priority,” Jungkook closes his eyes, “he would go, but you were always reluctant to ever ask him.”
Taehyung looks at him, “why did you change?”
Jungkook looks down at Taehyung by his bedside, gives him a small smile, “realized I would always be nothing but a chew toy to you. Lately, it was starting to hurt.”
Taehyung holds his breath, “I thought... I thought we would bicker but was it just,” he shrugs, “was I rude?”
“I mean, if I said something, you would always say something back,” Taehyung waves his hands, “if you got me those flowers, I got you those sweaters-”
“Your hand-me-downs?” Jungkook arches a brow, “really? The ones you hated wearing?”
Taehyung gapes, “I made those!”
Jungkook blinks, “you... made those?”
Taehyung nods, earnest, “yes! I was learning crocheting, and I made those for you!”
Jungkook opens his mouth, closes it and opens it again, “those were so...” he winces, “weird!”
Taehyung glares, “yes, because I was not a pro?!”
“I was learning to make those, and I wanted to make one perfect for my alpha,” Taehyung looks down at his hands, shrugging, “so, the first one was for you. The one that was not really-”
“Perfect,” Jungkook's lips twitch, “god, the sleeves were not the same size, Taehyung!”
Taehyung snorts, “yes, well, the ones afterwards were good. You probably saw alpha wearing them.”
Jungkook's smile dims, “maybe. I did not know you knitted them. But,” he looks away, “yes, I thought they were yours. They smelt like you.”
Taehyung bites down on his lower lip.
“Well, you have no idea how long it takes to make those,” Taehyung looks around the camp, “I used to fall asleep over them. Keep it by my side, do it during the lunch breaks or after the entire day's worth of work. Of course, they smelt like me.”
Taehyung gives him a look, “when you presented as an alpha, I made a perfect one for you. As the presentation gift,” he plays with his fingers, “but, you grew so distant,” he digs his nails into his palm, “I could not bring myself to give it to you. So, I kept it.”
“Maybe that is the thing, you know?” Jungkook watches the helper come towards his bed, “I was not made to receive your perfections.”
Taehyung cannot say anything. The beta comes to stand by the alpha's side.
“You have to take your medicines now,” she smiles, “here, alpha.”
Taehyung watches her help Jungkook up on his elbow to take the herbs. He watches Jungkook sip the water, slowly taking in the potion. The beta holds him comfortably, making sure Jungkook is not putting pressure on his wound. She murmurs instructions for him to ease his stance.
“Thank you, Jiwoo,” Jungkook smiles at her, “now go. You are already off duty.”
She chuckles, “no, alpha. I got the night duty to stay here,” she looks at Taehyung, “you are leaving, right?”
Taehyung nods, looks at Jungkook, “I will come by tomorrow morning.”
“You do not have to,” Jungkook shakes his head, “you have your own work. I am fine, see,” he gestures towards Jiwoo, “she is here. I will be fine. She,” he rolls his eyes at Jiwoo, “would not leave my side. I know.”
The beta pinches his arm, “I promised not to since childhood.”
Jiwoo mixes the herbs and makes small pills out of them for Jungkook to take, “you are my responsibility.”
Jungkook's lips twitch, “okay, love,” he looks at Taehyung, “trust me I will be fine. Go home, take rest,” he squeezes Taehyung's hand, “do not tire yourself out on me.”
Jiwoo looks at Taehyung, “he is fine. I am here,” she looks at Jungkook and Taehyung sees that worry in those eyes, “I will not let anything happen to him.”
Taehyung gets up, nodding, “I will,” he stops to see her feed Jungkook the pill, “go, then.”
Jungkook nods, “good night.”
Taehyung turns to leave.
“Alpha, you are prohibited from any heavy duty,” Jiwoo lists on her fingers, “also, you will be discharged tomorrow but you are staying with me in my hut so I can take care of the wound.”
Jungkook hums, “just come over to mine like you do. It is fine.”
Jiwoo snorts, “I am not cleaning your hut again. God, since childhood, how are you so messy?!”
Taehyung watches Jungkook watch her. There is a fondness in those eyes he can clearly see.
“Because you spoil me by cleaning after me,” Jungkook tugs her hair, “you should stop.”
“Maybe I will,” Jiwoo holds her head up, “some day.”
“Okay, love,” Jungkook closes his eyes, “now,” he places his arm over his eyes, “my head is hurting.”
Jiwoo sits on the bed, “just say you want a head massage-”
Taehyung speeds up, walking out of the camp to go home.
“Are you fine?” Jiwoo asks, putting Jungkook's head on her lap.
Jungkook nods, “yes, I am fine.”
“I do not know, alpha, I just think,” Jiwoo hesitates, her fingers working in Jungkook's hair, “it is the perfect time to get rid of that one-sided bond. You are right here.”
Jungkook looks up at her, “you think?”
Jiwoo nods, gives him a small rueful smile, “he still smells of Boemseok. Do you not see? He will never move on. Even if he does, he will never love you.”
“I know, love,” Jungkook sighs, “I know. I think, you are right, I know it.”
Jiwoo holds out her hand, the cross gleaming on her wrist, “you know,” she picks up Jungkook's wrist, unfastens those wristbands to reveal Jungkook's tattoo, “as the cursed ones, we can make a great pair.”
Jungkook watches the same tattoos, chuckles, “we are the odd ones.”
“Two odds make an even,” she gives Jungkook a teasing smile.
Jungkook looks at Jiwoo, “you feel nothing for Jin hyung?”
Jiwoo smiles, “no, I do not. He is made for someone else. I have accepted it. Unlike you.”
“Does it not hurt?” Jungkook wonders, “to see him mated?”
“No,” Jiwoo looks down at her mark, “since childhood, I dreamt of having my mate but when I got the cross, I accepted it.”
Jungkook looks outside, “then... why does it hurt me so much?”
“Because, you are not letting go,” Jiwoo squeezes Jungkook's arm, “let him go.”
Jiwoo is right. Jungkook knows Jiwoo is right. If anyone in his pack understands him, that is Jiwoo. They are the only two cursed in this pack. They grew up side by side. They are like the came coin, different sides. Jungkook finds solace in Jiwoo, and vice versa.
“Let me sleep, love,” he closes his eyes, “are you staying?”
Jiwoo hums, leaning back against the wall with Jungkook's head on her lap, “I am staying the night.”
Jungkook is grateful, “thank you, lilly.”
Jiwoo smiles down at him, “your nicknames are so nostalgic.”
Jungkook hums, lips twitching, “those flowers are your favourites. What is wrong in calling you that?”
There is so much wrong. Jiwoo wants to say. Every time Jungkook calls her love, she wants to be that to Jungkook. Every time the alpha calls her lilly, something blooms in her.
She wanted to be happy for Jungkook. She wanted to see Jungkook happy, but Taehyung does not make him happy. Jiwoo burns every time she sees Taehyung, and the omega smells of that alpha. It hurts her when Jungkook looks so lifeless and tired. She wants to see Jungkook happy.
She held Jungkook to herself the night Taehyung told him that he should have died. Jungkook did not cry, but she knows it broke him. She held the alpha the entire night, shedding tears that Jungkook refused to let go. It hurts her to see Jungkook suffer for caring so much.
She looks down at the alpha, already asleep and sighs. There has to be a solution. She looks outside.
The moon shines bright outside and Jiwoo thinks maybe, just maybe, Taehyung should follow his alpha. Maybe soulmates are better being with each other in every universe.
Jiwoo pulls Jungkook to herself, tears welling in her eyes while he looks at the moon.
“I am not wishing anything bad, right?” she murmurs, “he is not happy here. He is not making kook happy either. But, kook married him, and he will not let go until he has to. So… please.”
She falls asleep beside Jungkook that night. Just as she is doing since Taehyung left. Jungkook does not mind. There were years they spent in each other's huts. Falling asleep in each other's beds. Two friends against all odds. It does not bother them anymore. Never did.
Taehyung hears the news from Jimin.
“The uphill pack fell under attack,” the omega says, “I cannot believe they were all burnt alive?”
Taehyung frowns, “but,” he looks at his best friend, “their prince, AgustD, is known for his fighting skills. How did he lose?”
Jimin shrugs, “no idea. People are saying he was burnt alive in his packhouse too. I am not sure,” he looks at Taehyung, “tonight, father is going for inspection. To see if anyone is alive or not. To help.”
Taehyung nods, “I see.”
Jimin sighs, “it is heartbreaking, really.”
“Anyway,” Jimin eats the strawberry Hoseok got for them, “I heard Jungkook is going too.”
Taehyung pauses, “what?”
Jimin nods, “I know. He is injured. But, he insists on going back to work.”
Taehyung frowns, “well, he should not. It is too early for that wound to heal!”
Taehyung frowns, “I went back the next day, but Jiwoo said he does not want to meet anyone.”
Jimin watches him, “but, when I went to see him, he said you did not show up after that night?”
Taehyung sucks his lower lip into his mouth, “maybe Jiwoo forgot to tell him.”
Jimin gives him a confused stare, “his mate showed up, and she forgot to tell him?”
Taehyung nods, “yes? She is a helper in the camp. She has too much work, and she was so worried about him, maybe it slipped her mind.”
Jimin eats another strawberry, “I find her weird.”
Taehyung rolls his eyes, “you find everyone weird.”
Jimin snorts, “everyone is weird, but she is,” he frowns, “she is always with Jungkook. I see her coming out of his hut almost every day. She is his friend, alright, but he is mated now. She should know and respect that?”
Taehyung gives a short laugh, “I am that mate and I live in my soulmate's hut. I do not blame her if she is taking care of him. I know, I would not be that person-”
“Why not?” Jimin has a solemn look on his face, “why cannot you be that person? How long will you mourn, Tae?”
“Jimin, do not,” Taehyung warns, “no.”
Jimin sighs, “I do not wish to say this, I did not want to say this, but your soulmate was just another weirdo,” he looks away, “why cannot you see, Tae? Just because he is your soulmate, you do not have to blindly agree to his everything!”
Taehyung glares at his best friend, “just because you want a perfect alpha, think you will have a fairytale of a love story, does not mean it is true, Jimin!” he grips the spatula in his hand, “life is not perfect. We are not perfect! He had his flaws, but those were not-”
“He would flirt with me!” Jimin hisses, slaps his hands down on the table, “I am your best friend, and I was just fifteen!” he grits his teeth, “Tae, open your eyes! He guilt-tripped you to sleep with him! He was not hurting! A knot does not hurt if there is no one to take it!”
“I was seventeen when we slept together,” Taehyung curses.
“Yes, but he was eyeing me since I was fifteen!” Jimin curses back, “he was a sleazy bastard. Tried to get me to like him, so he can pull some favours from my father! You know! God, you were there!”
“I was devastated when you presented as his soulmate,” Jimin holds Taehyung's hand in his.
Taehyung looks away, “he was the best fighter of this pack. Best warrior.”
“That does not mean he was a good alpha,” Jimin squeezes Taehyung's hand in his, “a good person.”
A/N - I am tired of clearing this out. Boemseok was indeed Tae's soulmate. Jungkook is in a one-sided bond with Taehyung. No, Boemseok did not manipulate Taehyung to believe it. He would choose Jimin then, as he holds more power. Let the denial go. He was tae's soulmate.
Taehyung takes his hand away, “he did not force me to sleep with him! I agreed,” Taehyung mutters, “also, for your information, I do not owe you this, but he did not knot me either. We just had sex and he stopped. He was careful.”
Jimin rubs his face, “you are so stupid!”
“Tae, if you fell pregnant, he would lose everything!” Jimin grips Taehyung by his arms, “of course he did not knot you! But, he slept with you when you were 17, and he was,” his face twists, “26! Do you not see the problem here?! You were not 18. You were not of age!”
“Would you not sleep with your alpha, if you found him, if you wanted to?” Taehyung arches a brow, “what if your soulmate is twenty years older than you?”
Jimin snorts, “then he better be ready for me to break the bond because I am not marrying someone that old!”
“Also, yes, I can want anything, but if he is the elder one in the relationship, then he should know better,” Jimin looks away, “also, sleeping with you is one, he slept with many. Made you believe it was okay. Manipulated you to give your permission for him to sleep around!”
“He was of age!” Taehyung hates how his heart hurts, “he did not take a partner for a few of his ruts, and then it got really bad-”
“No, it did not!” Jimin throws his hands up, “you do not believe me?!” he grips his hair, “believe your mate! Jungkook does not take any partner!”
“He did not take one for his first rut!” Jimin glares at Taehyung, “he does not take one now. The rut house knows. The records come to my father. He does not hurt, or, are you accepting that he is stronger than your dear alpha?” Jimin sighs, “he was a mistake, Taehyung!”
Jimin's lips twitch with a sad smile, “maybe Jungkook is the moongoddess' apology for that man. Maybe,” he hesitates before pulling Taehyung to himself, “Jungkook is the second chance at happiness you deserved. Just, let go of that blind belief of soulmate and see, Tae.”
“He was my fated mate,” Taehyung's eyes water.
Jimin shakes his head, “you want to believe fate? Let's do that too. Maybe then it was fate that night who got Boemseok to go instead of Jungkook. It was fate that switched their places. It was probably fate that wanted him gone.”
“The moongoddess choose our mates but maybe fate and moongoddess are different,” Jimin holds Taehyung close, “fated are star crossed lovers, you know? Moongoddess just chooses the mate, love blooms on its own. Fate decides our lovers. Maybe your soulmate was not your love.”
“There are so many couples who broke their soulmate bonds,” Jimin wipes Taehyung's eyes, “but, when two people love each other, you cannot break that. A bond can be easily broken, but love remains. That is fate. Maybe Jungkook is that fate you deny seeing. I am just saying.”
“I am not telling you to fall in love with him, I am not telling you to jump him,” Jimin snorts, “but, maybe, if you believe in fate so much, let fate decide and not fight it? Some day, maybe, you will fall in love and then we will call you the fated pair. Better than soulmates.”
“Imagine the power you will be holding, Tae,” Jimin squeezes Taehyung's biceps, “your bond will not be broken by some herbs or surgery. Your bond will be stronger. Tie you two together in your heart. That is the best type of love story. Chosen. Not forced by some goddess!”
Taehyung looks away, “I do not love him.”
Jimin nods, “you do not. I know. I just want you to give it a fair chance. You are mourning someone who was your soulmate, I get it. But, he was not a good person. Maybe see the truth and start to heal. You need to heal, Tae.”
Taehyung looks at Jimin, his lips twitching, “is this what you want with Taemin? A fated love story?”
Jimin pauses, colour blooming on his cheeks, “well, maybe?” he shrugs, “I mean, I do not know who my soulmate will be. I am sure I do not like the idea of being forced into it.”
Taehyung does not agree with Jimin. He has seen the alpha's kindness. He has seen his alpha's love. Felt it. He was cherished. He does not like when Jimin makes it sound like he was manipulated into sleeping with him when it was not the case. They did not do it during his rut.
Also, he does not believe just because he needs to heal, he has to jump on another alpha. He does not agree and never will. He walks down the path towards the hut and looks at his feet, thinking.
He knew Boemseok was friendly. He knew Boemseok was somewhat of a flirt.
But, that was before meeting him. He changed. He apologized to Taehyung. Taehyung remembers how the alpha was, and he loves that man. He loves how tender he was, he loves how patient he was.
He would call Taehyung a pup and take care of him like one. Always protective of him.
Taehyung grips the strap of the cotton bag he is carrying, frowning. He does not need to hear it from Jimin or anyone else. He knows his alpha and he would not judge him for his past. He changed. For him. That is what he holds important to himself. Moongoddess was not wrong.
“I wanted him that night,” Taehyung tells himself, a long breath escaping him, “he did not force himself on me. I do not know if rut is different from one alpha to another, but, I do not care,” he glares at the path, “he did not cheat. I gave him permission for the rut.”
Taehyung stops when he reaches the hut. His eyes take in the place, and he goes up to the door to knock.
After a few moments, the door opens to the alpha. Jungkook looks at him with wide eyes and a confused frown.
Taehyung nods, “hi. I was just dropping by.”
Jungkook opens the door a little wider, “come in,” he makes a face, “be quiet, though.”
Taehyung leaves his shoes by the door and looks at the alpha, “why?”
Jungkook jerks his head towards the bedroom, “Jiwoo is sleeping. You needed something?”
Taehyung looks at the bedroom door and back at the alpha who, he inhales, smells like the omega. Taehyung nods.
“I just dropped by to ask if you are really thinking of joining the troop for tonight?”
Jungkook sighs, “I just had a fight with her this morning. I am not.”
Taehyung watches the alpha with a small smile. He wishes Jimin would see this.
Jungkook is freshly bathed. He still smells of the omega. The scent is that poignant on him. There are, Taehyung's eyes travel, a few marks and scratches around his chest and collarbones.
“Why do you smell of an omega if she is a beta?” Taehyung wonders.
Jungkook blinks, “oh, yes, she,” he shrugs, “her scent is,” he sighs, “her scent is of an omega. It is something that is a reason she did not get anyone to mate her. People find it weird.”
Jungkook's eyes harden, “do not judge her for that. It is something you are born with. She was born with this speciality,” Jungkook sounds at edge, “it is nothing to frown upon, but this pack has judged her enough. Drop it.”
Taehyung rises a brow, “I did not say anything.”
Taehyung looks over Jungkook's shoulder, “it can also be some hormonal problem that the medics can solve. You should ask her to get herself checked-”
“Drop it, Taehyung,” Jungkook grips the door, “just drop it.”
Taehyung holds his hands up, “okay, I was just suggesting.”
“Alpha!” The voice sounds frantic and Jungkook goes alert.
Taehyung watches, immobile, how Jungkook's scent bursts out of him in waves. Too strong around them. Jungkook rushes inside the bedroom, and Taehyung is not sure what he is supposed to do. He follows.
Taehyung stands by the door, eyes on the bed where Jiwoo lies. She looks lost, hands grabbing Jungkook as soon as Jungkook is close enough. She clings to him, burying her face against his chest and nails digging on his biceps while she chants something Taehyung cannot understand.
Jungkook's arms are around her right away, pulling her closer, “I am right here. I am right here, love, I am right here,” his voice goes hoarse, “come on, lilly, take a deep breath. You can do it. Come on. I am not leaving. I am not going anywhere. I told you. Please.”
Taehyung watches Jungkook sit while she buries her face against his neck, nosing at his scent gland.
Taehyung watches Jungkook press a kiss against her wrist, “I am right here. I am not leaving. I am here. Look at me. Your kook is right here. With you. Sleep, lilly.”
Taehyung chokes on thin air when he notices the nest. He looks around with wide eyes and back at the alpha, who is whispering something in the beta's ear.
Taehyung looks at the nest and thinks, and then he sighs, turning away.
He chuckles to himself, “mimi should have seen it.”
He stops when his wrist is grabbed. Taehyung looks over his shoulder at Jungkook with a small smile.
“No, I will not tell anyone what I saw. If that is what you want me to do,” he arches a brow, “no worries.”
Jungkook grits his teeth, “what is there to tell anyone?”
Taehyung gives Jungkook a small laugh, “that, she is not a beta at all?!” he steps up to the alpha, “that she used suppressants to hide her pheromones to get into the medical camp?! That you help her during her one heat every year?! That she is having her heat right now?!”
“I am working in that field, Jungkook,” Taehyung thunders, “I know these things!”
“Then understand her side and shut up!” Jungkook covers Taehyung's mouth, pressing him up against the door, “she has no one to look after her! She needs to live a life. She loves her work!”
Jungkook sighs, “just… please, you work in that field, and you know how hard it was to get you in. Just let her-”
“Hands off of me, you smell like her!” Taehyung steps on Jungkook's foot, “also, you could have said this when you were looking down on my alpha!”
“I do not sleep with her!” Jungkook grunts, eyes burning onto Taehyung's face, “for heaven's sake, why do you always think the worst of me?”
Taehyung gives a disbelieving laugh, “you have an omega and a nest in your bedroom, and you are asking me this?”
Jungkook gives him a snort, “you live in your damn soulmate's hut while you are married to me. Do not even try to point fingers at me to prove how good you are being, please. I just lend her my bedroom to have a comforting scent and a familiar place where no one would barge in!”
“She is hiding. No one knows about this, and it is for just a day! It is intense, and she needs someone to be here all the time so that she does not do something crazy and expose herself. I am just keeping a guard. Not fucking her, for god's sake!”
Taehyung arches a brow, “you are telling me, there is an omega who is going through a day's heat that is worth the entire year's heats, it is that intense, and you are not fucking her?”
Jungkook inhales deeply, “exactly that.”
Taehyung lets out a giggle, “of course, surely.”
Taehyung waves his hand, “you know what? No need to lie. I will just walk out of here and think I never came here,” he turns on his heels, “I do not need your excuses. You mean nothing to me, why would you sleeping around mean anything? Forget it, it's fine. Enjoy her heat.”
“I will, thanks for dropping by,” Jungkook gestures at the door, “do me a favour and stop coming over. I do not want to see you.”
Taehyung watches the alpha, “you know, Boemseok and you, when you said you were not him, you were right. At least he had the guts to tell me.”
a/n - you all really took the au to 3k for the twist and now suffer with me x
“I am not cheating!” Jungkook throws his hands up, “I never slept with her! Do you not see it?! It would be like you sleeping with Jimin! She is my best friend, and you are making assumptions! Also? You told me I am free to do whatever I want. Why are you so upset now?!”
“Because, you want it or not, I want it or not, I am mated to you!” Taehyung jerks the shirt down to show the oozing wound, “it does not heal when you are so close to another omega! Sleeping with her or not! It does not let me sleep at night! You are hurting me!”
“You do not get to sleep around or let other omegas scent you when I am struggling to heal this damn wound you left!” Taehyung breathes, heavy, “I am not saying it but if we do give our marriage a chance, what? She will come over every year for her heat?! Are you crazy?!”
Jungkook takes a step back, “we are not giving this marriage a chance. Not when you are in that hut, wrapped in your alpha's scent and in his nest. Not when I do not want to,” Jungkook's face hardens, for a second he is quiet, thinking, then he shrugs, “let's break the bond.”
Jungkook's shoulders slump, “I am tired of this,” he shakes his head, “tired of ignoring the jabs my friends take at me indirectly, laugh at me, tell me how I am not capable of keeping an omega. How I needed to marry you to get a position. I am tired of all this.”
“I am tired of holding it in that I would get that position in the pack anyway, I just,” he looks away, “I just wanted to save you from whatever they were choosing-”
“No,” Taehyung holds his hand up, “do not dare to say you were trying to be a hero! You are anything but that!”
Jungkook and Taehyung look at the bedroom when another cry is heard. Jungkook looks back at Taehyung, and Taehyung looks back at Jungkook.
“If you want, you can break the bond,” Jungkook steps towards the bedroom, “I will handle everything else. You will not be blamed.”
“Everyone will blame me,” Taehyung grips the door knob, “I know. You know-”
“If you do it, let me know,” Jungkook shrugs, “I will see what I can do.”
“There is only one way this can work,” Taehyung rolls his eyes, “if you are found with her, and she is mated to you.”
Taehyung pauses when Jungkook stops, looking at the bedroom and at him.
A hollow laugh escapes Taehyung, “you are thinking about it.”
Jungkook nods, “yes, I am. I made a mistake and if this gets me out of it, I will think about it.”
Taehyung leans against the door.
“You are right,” Taehyung nods, “and, you know what? What you want and never had? Someone to love you? She does,” Taehyung chuckles, “so, that is another added bonus. Let me know after talking to her. Let's finish this mistake!”
He storms out of the hut.
The bite hurts. It starts to thrum with pain while Taehyung runs to his hut. He gets inside, closes the door and falls in front of the fireplace. With trembling hands, he starts the fire, shoving the woods there to let the flame intensify. He inhales deeply, trying to ease it.
It does not help. The mark hurts from within. The pain shoots down his arms and Taehyung cries out, falling on the carpet to hug himself. He thrashes, trying to breathe through it. He knows it is not his pain. It is the alpha.
“I freed you, why are you hurting so much?!”
Taehyung hugs his knees to himself, entire body trembling as pain shoots down his veins. He looks at the ceiling, watches it fade in and out. He closes his eyes, trying to ease himself, but it does not help. The pain does not go away. Not until he is succumbing to it.
Taehyung is not sure how long he stays there, unconscious, but he wakes up to the continuous knock on his door. Taehyung drags himself up to his feet, only to realize it is already night. He drags himself to the door, opening it. Jungkook stands there.
“What do you want?” Taehyung whispers, “what the hell-”
“I am here for the pain,” Jungkook breathes out, “that you must be feeling.”
Taehyung gives a delirious laugh, “oh, you know?”
Jungkook looks away, “there are some medicines you need to take. Let me come in.”
Taehyung steps aside, he would do anything to not feel this pain. Jungkook goes to sit on the chair and Taehyung hisses.
“It is his chair,” he points at the carpet, “sit on the floor.”
Jungkook sighs, sitting on the floor, “this will start the process of breaking the bond.”
Taehyung watches the medicines, “oh? She agreed?”
Jungkook nods, reading the instructions, “you have to take the medicines for a month,” he makes a face, “that will dilute the alpha's venom from your system, and it will slowly set in, and the venom will lose its power.”
“In this one month, you are to not,” Jungkook stops, gives a laugh, “well, nothing more to read.”
Taehyung grabs the paper, “who made the medicines?”
Jungkook blinks, “the head medic? She handles this. Only she can break a bond and make these. I just got back from hers.”
Taehyung looks at the alpha and back at the note, “let me read it fully.”
His face heats up when he reads the full instructions.
“Why would we do anything when we are breaking a bond?!” Taehyung throws the chit into the fire, glaring at it, “oh, god, why did she even write that?”
Jungkook snorts, “told you there is nothing more to read. Now, take the medicine.”
Taehyung nods, taking one from the pouch.
Taehyung takes the medicine and looks at the alpha, “how is she?”
Jungkook ties the pouch, shrugging, “she is old. Was saying now she wishes she can follow her mate to the grave-”
Taehyung curses, “I did not mean the damn healer! Oh, my God, you stupid alpha!”
“Then, who?” Jungkook looks up, confused.
Taehyung stops too, “I forgot her name!”
Jungkook blinks, “who...?”
Taehyung slaps his thigh, “your mate?!”
Jungkook looks at the pouch and back at Taehyung, eyes alert, “are you having some side effects?! You are my mate?”
“Your omega!” Taehyung grits out, “oh, my God, why did I ask?! Forget it! Get out!”
Jungkook blinks, “what omega-” then he stops, “oh, Jiwoo?” he breathes out, “oh, her? Yes, she is fine. What happened to her?”
Taehyung inhales deeply, “oh, you are just so infuriating!”
“She is not my omega, oh my God,” Jungkook rubs his temple, “you are just as infuriating.”
“Well, you are mating her, so,” Taehyung shrugs, “whatever.”
Jungkook looks around the room, “god, I am not-” he sighs, “you know what? Forget it, here, your medicine. I will go now.”
“You are not, what?” Taehyung grasps the alpha's sleeve, “what do you mean?”
Jungkook looks at the fireplace, “I am not in the mood for this talk. Let's forget it.”
Taehyung looks at the alpha's face, the fire reflects in those eyes, “when are you getting mated again?”
“No,” Jungkook shakes his head, a delirious smile on his lips, “no, do not try to have this conversation with me. I am doing what you wanted me to. Do not ask me questions I do not owe you an answer of. Okay?”
Taehyung frowns, “I do deserve to know! When you mate her, if it is +
“+ before my mating mark is faded, it will hurt me-”
“You are so selfish,” Jungkook whispers, a disbelieving look on his face, “you are so utterly selfish. I cannot believe I was thinking about you when all you care about is you and your pain and your alpha and your sufferings!”
“No, seriously, why do you think I owe you all this?” Jungkook chuckles, hopeless, “why do you think I need to tell you when and what I do? I do not need to. I do not have to. I do not owe you anything, Taehyung, just like you do not owe me anything. So, you deserve nothing!”
“You want to know what you deserve?” Jungkook chuckles, “you deserve that alpha. You really deserve him,” he looks away, expression showing his disgust, “the moongoddess did not do wrong in making up you two as soulmates. You both deserved each other. Not me. I did not.”
Jungkook gets up, “I did not deserve to be the loose thread,” his eyes gleam, “I did not deserve to,” he looks away, throat bobbing, “to be the side character in your love story,” he laughs, “I know I am never a main character in anyone's story but this one in particular hurt!”
Taehyung opens his mouth, hesitating, “you wanted to marry me. I did not choose you-”
Jungkook gives a laugh, his shoulders slumping, “yes, you never chose me,” he unties his wristband, throwing it into the fire, “the moongoddess did. As a backup. A second lead. A cursed mate.”
Taehyung freezes when his eyes find the cross. It is bloody. The raw skin oozes with blood. It slowly rolls down the alpha's pale hand.
“You see, the hurt you are feeling? Now?” Jungkook chuckles, “I felt it for years. Every time he touched you. Every time you were near him.”
Jungkook snorts, tears brimming in his eyes, “the night you slept with him? I bled,” his voice wavers, “the pain you are feeling right now, I felt more. So, no, Taehyung, I did not sleep with Jiwoo. Because I know how much it hurts, and I will never put you through it!”
“I know you did not know, I know you had no clue and I made my peace with it,” Jungkook whispers, “but, you do not get to call me names and say shit about me when I bled for you without a solution. I am cursed, Taehyung, unlike you, I cannot stop this! I cannot heal. Ever!”
“So, no,” Jungkook steps back, “no, you do not get to demand anything from me. When you heal, you will go out and meet someone and I will feel it,” he looks away, “I will bleed when you let them touch you. I do not know what I did to deserve this, but yes, it is what it is.”
Jungkook wipes his eyes, “so, let's do this, but you do not get to insult me. Just let me have this much,” he looks away, “I am fine being a side character in your story, just let me be in the shadows. Do not drag me like this. I am tired. Exhausted, even.”
“Take your medicine, break the bond and go,” Jungkook waves his hand, “do not demand more from me because I am seriously too empty to fill you up anymore. I cannot,” he steps back, stumbles, “please.”
“Since when,” Taehyung looks away, “since when you knew? About... the curse?”
Jungkook feels the stab. He knows it is a curse. His bond is nothing but a curse. But hearing Taehyung address it as such, listening to the omega call him a curse, it hurts different.
Jungkook turns away to leave. He does not need to go through this. He does not have to.
Taehyung gets up, desperate. He strides up to the alpha and grasps his wrist.
Jungkook growls, swiftly turning to take a hold of Taehyung's wrist to jerk himself free.
“It started when you did this!” Jungkook roars, “when you did exactly this that day after I presented!”
Taehyung does not step back, “what will heal this?”
Jungkook gives him a short laugh, “oh, my god, get out! Shut up! What-”
“What will heal this?!” Taehyung demands, “there is no way, there is no solution! Tell me. I will do anything! What will heal this?!”
Taehyung shrugs, “I want to know,” he steps up to Jungkook, “whatever it is, let's do it! Will it go away if we mated?! Then, why did not you let me?!”
Jungkook inhales deeply, “you,” he breathes out, “no, it does not heal after that.”
“Then what?!” Taehyung curses.
Jungkook takes Taehyung's hand in his, rubs over his wrist, “a flower will bloom here,” he whispers, looking at the skin with sorrowful eyes, “the day,” he laughs, hollow, “you fall in love with me,” he looks at Taehyung, “my cross will heal to leave a petal of that flower.”
“A token of love,” Jungkook murmurs, “and your soulmate tattoo will fade,” he nods when Taehyung's face goes pale, “if, at that moment, I love you too.”
Taehyung takes a step back, “so... it will never heal?”
Jungkook chuckles, “yes. It will never heal.”
Taehyung watches Jungkook visibly try to shake out of that trance. He turns on his heels to leave.
“I can try.”
Jungkook freezes. His eyes on the closed door and his ears echoing with those words.
“What?” he asks, still facing the door.
Taehyung hesitates, “to heal you.”
Jungkook looks over his shoulder, “the medicine is setting in, huh?”
Taehyung looks at him and then back at the fireplace, “well,” he shrugs, “I,” he closes his eyes, “I know how it feels to like you. So,” he turns towards the fireplace.
Jungkook frowns, “what...?”
Taehyung closes his eyes, “why would I ever make four sweaters for you, you stupid alpha?!” he curses, “I,” his throat feels dry, he knows Jungkook is looking at him, “I made my peace with my soulmate, I love him. I do,” he breathes out, “but, I know how liking you felt like.”
“It was a crush,” Taehyung insists, “it was nothing but a crush but,” he blinks at the fire, “I can work on it-”
Jungkook watches him, “you had a crush on me?”
Taehyung glares at the fireplace, “why else would anyone tolerate your rude ass?!”
Jungkook blinks, “I... what...?”
Taehyung curses, “it was just a crush. I fell in love with my soulmate afterwards. So, I cannot promise you if,” he sighs, “I do not know if it is possible at all, but,” he risks a glance at the alpha, “I can try.”
“You can't try to feel love, Taehyung,” Jungkook chuckles.
“Also, I do not need your pity,” Jungkook looks away, “so, it is okay,” he looks around the room, “you cannot tell me you will try when you are still in your alpha's hut an-”
“And, you are ready to mate,” Taehyung frowns, “I keep forgetting her name. That beta, omega, whatever.”
a/n – just so you know, in yoonmin arc, taekook's story was not finished. It was their half-way. lol
See you soon.
If you want to support me, appreciate my writing, here's my kofi : ko-fi.com/aamyungv
“You know what, Taehyung?” Jungkook shakes his head, “let's talk when you did not just take the medicines. Let's not do this now. I do not want to do this now.”
Taehyung watches the alpha leave. His eyes go to the fireplace and the omega sighs, going to lock the door.
“What do you mean you will lie to love him?!”
Jimin's voice stops Jungkook dead on this track in the packhouse. He is there to meet the leader and while passing the omega's room he hears Jimin shout.
“Do you even realize what you are saying, Tae?!” Jimin sounds frantic.
Jungkook stops by the door, his ears picking up on Taehyung's voice next.
“Yes! I know,” Taehyung sounds flippant, “listen, when he said that, it felt like I owe him this, okay? I just...” the omega curses, “it is not like anyone can measure love! That tattoo thing is not true!”
“I am from this medical field!” Taehyung whines, “I have never heard-”
“What if it is indeed true?” Jimin hisses, “then, it will never show up, and you are getting his hopes up! For no reason at all! That is very cruel of you! Did you ever really have a crush on him? At all?!”
“Of course, not!” Taehyung gives a disbelieving laugh, “you really think I had a crush on the pack's quiet and weird pup? Really?!”
Jungkook's hands tighten in fists, his jaw setting.
“I think it is psychological, this flower thing,” Taehyung tries again, “if he thinks I love +
“him, that flower will grow. If that is true fact. I think the flower will grow when he feels like I love him. Then the wound will heal. I think that is it. He is not healing because he keeps thinking he needs me to love him. I am sure with time, it will heal.”
Jungkook gives a smirk at his feet, glaring at the carpet.
Jimin lets out a deep breath, hissing, “what if he expects physical intimacy? Then, what?!”
Taehyung snorts, “well,” he is quiet for a few seconds, then his voice comes again, “people can have sex without it meaning-”
Jungkook storms down the corridor to the alpha's room. He stops by the door, inhaling deeply before he knocks on the door.
During the entire meeting, he tries to stop thinking about what Taehyung said. He just cannot. He cannot forget those words. No matter how much he tries.
When he gets out of the room, Jimin is going out of his room too. Followed by Taehyung.
Taehyung looks at him and stops for a second. Jungkook seethes when the omega gives him a small smile.
Jungkook knows he should walk away, he should simply turn and leave. He cannot.
He will play it too. If, to Taehyung, he is nothing but a plaything, then Jungkook will take part in it too.
Jungkook walks up to the omega, “can I talk to you for a second?”
Taehyung's large eyes widen some more, he looks at Jimin and back at him, “s-sure.”
Taehyung follows Jungkook inside Jimin's room while Jimin leaves for the day.
“What is it?” Taehyung asks, closing the door behind himself.
Jungkook watches the omega, “I gave your offer some thoughts. I think, it is a good idea.”
Taehyung pauses, “you do?”
He takes a few steps up to the omega, inhaling his scent. The scent burns in his lungs and Jungkook burns all over.
“I think,” he cups the side of Taehyung's face, “I think, it is a good idea.”
Taehyung flinches as soon as Jungkook's palm touches his face, “oh...?”
Jungkook leans in, “yes,” he whispers, “I think we should do this.”
Taehyung's hand comes to rest on his chest, “wh-what are you doing?”
Jungkook breathes out a soft chuckle, “trying to make sure you are into this. As much as I am.”
He wants Taehyung to push him away.
Instead, the omega's eyes wander from Jungkook's eyes to his lips, and he does not move an inch.
Jungkook's touch digs deep. His hand on Taehyung's face comes down to hold his jaw. His other arm going around Taehyung's waist.
"Are you sure?" Jungkook asks, waits.
Taehyung bites down on his lower lip, the skin turning white under the pressure. He nods, throat bobbing.
“Yes,” the omega's whisper rings in Jungkook's ear.
That one word burns down all the hesitance, all the benefits of doubts Jungkook wanted to give Taehyung.
Jungkook tilts Taehyung's face and leans to press their lips together. Taehyung sucks in a breath, his hand on Jungkook's chest tightening.
Jungkook hates how pain shoots through him while he deepens the kiss.
This is not how he imagined their first kiss. If it ever happened.
Jungkook presses Taehyung up against the door, kissing him breathless. Taehyung tries to match him, lips moving, but Jungkook does not want to let him. He does not want to let the omega get a hold of him.
He wants to win this. Whatever this is. Whatever this has become.
He wants to leave Taehyung as bruised as he feels. He wants to leave the omega cursed. As he is.
Jungkook trails kisses down Taehyung's throat, ignores the whines that leave the omega's lips. Taehyung holds his shoulders and Jungkook shrugs him off.
“Do not touch me.”
Jungkook kisses up to Taehyung's lips again, “do not touch me until you are permitted to.”
Taehyung tears his lips away, turning his head, “so, you get to do this, and I cannot even touch you?”
Jungkook chuckles, nosing the omega's scent gland, “as if you have not done enough.”
Taehyung frowns, “huh?”
Jungkook smiles, “nothing,” he pulls back a little, “nothing, omega,” he watches Taehyung, “you are already doing me a favour by giving us a chance. By,” his teeth grit together, “trying to love me.”
Taehyung looks away, “yes. I… that is true.”
Jungkook places two fingers under Taehyung's chin and turns the omega's focus back on himself.
“Move in with me,” Jungkook challenges, his eyes gleaming, “if you are ready to give us a chance, move back in with me.”
He knows Taehyung will refuse, and he waits for it.
Taehyung looks down at his hands, “I will not move into that hut where your Jiwoo spent her heat. Not sleep on that bed where it still smells like her.”
Jungkook wants to scream. Burning lava rolls down his spine while he watches Taehyung.
“Then, what do you suggest, omega?”
Taehyung thinks, then looks at Jungkook, “let's take it slow. We can meet up. We can spend some time together. Get to know each other and in that process fall in love.”
Jungkook feels the stab. Fall in love. As if Taehyung is planning to.
He hums, “that makes sense. Okay.”
Jungkook pulls Taehyung in for another kiss. Taehyung comes easily. Their lips slotting together.
'𝐼𝑓 𝑛𝑜𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑦𝑡𝘩𝑖𝑛𝑔, 𝐼 𝑤𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑠𝑢𝑟𝑒𝑙𝑦 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑝 𝑙𝑜𝑣𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑦𝑜𝑢 𝑖𝑛 𝑡𝘩𝑖𝑠 𝑝𝑟𝑜𝑐𝑒𝑠𝑠,' Jungkook thinks, his hands pulling Taehyung closer to himself.
Taehyung is not sure when Jungkook started to visit him every night in his hut. He is not sure how those innocent kisses started to last longer, and he slowly started to let the alpha linger for more. Kisses turned into make-outs and make-outs turn into sex.
Taehyung feels the alpha's knot inside him and tries to move for the glass of water. Jungkook reaches it for him, holding it to his lips. The fire burns beside them, the woods cracking. Taehyung feels too hot.
“Thank you,” Taehyung murmurs, looking over at the alpha.
Jungkook presses a kiss against Taehyung's shoulder blade, “hmm,” he noses the omega's mark, “is everything okay? You look pale tonight.”
Taehyung closes his eyes, using Jungkook's arm as a pillow, “I am feeling a little under the weather.”
Jungkook pulls him in, “huh?”
Taehyung looks over his shoulder, winces when the knot tugs at his insides, “well, do not worry. I am seeing the healer tomorrow.”
Jungkook hums, “I do not worry at all,” his eyes gleam, “maybe you are pregnant.”
Taehyung cannot chalk the possibility off, “maybe.”
Jungkook lets Taehyung squirm closer to him, pull his arm tightly around his tummy, “well,” Taehyung breathes out, “we can raise a pup. I think.”
Jungkook chews the inside of his cheek, “or, I can,” Jungkook pulls out when the knot goes down, “reject the pup.”
Taehyung slowly turns on his back, eyes on the alpha, “what?”
Jungkook gives him a smile, “well, the healer knows I told you to take the herbs for the bond to break. She knows I wanted to get rid of it. Now, if you are pregnant, it will be very easy to say you're looping me in.”
Taehyung's eyes skim over Jungkook's face, “you are jesting, right?” he shivers, suddenly feeling cold, “you would not do that.”
Jungkook pops up on his elbow, rests his head on his hand and looks down at the omega, “well, I will never leave my pup, but I can reject you.”
Taehyung's throat bobs, “why...”
“Why not?” Jungkook makes a face, “I mean, no one will blame me. The entire pack is actually waiting for me to reject you. You do not live with me. You do not care about me. You-”
“I slept with you!” Taehyung sits up, voice cracking, “alpha-”
Jungkook laughs, “well, you slept with your alpha. Right. Your alpha is not me. That will help the case too. I can easily say it is not my pup at all, but just because I feel obligated, I will keep the pup. But, not you. Do you know how much respect I will get by doing that?”
“What do you mean, you can say it is not your pup?!” Taehyung whispers, eyes red-shot, “it is your pup! I did not sleep around-”
“How can you prove that?” Jungkook's smile turns sinister, “in your game of pretence and lies, I hope mine sticks with you, Taehyung.”
Taehyung feels exposed. Naked. Too naked. He pulls the fur around himself, eyes on the alpha in front of him. He tries to think Jungkook is joking. Probably one of those elaborated pranks.
But the alpha smells of anger. The burning flames intensify with each passing second.
“But, I,” Taehyung has no words, he looks at the alpha and back at the fireplace, “if it is a pup, you would reject it?”
Jungkook shakes his head, gets up to dress himself, “no. I will take my pup and leave,” he looks at Taehyung, “you here with your alpha. Alone. As you want.”
“What about you healing-” Taehyung stops when Jungkook laughs.
“I will never heal, Taehyung, I am cursed,” Jungkook buttons his pant and kneels on his one knee to be on Taehyung's eye level, “not because of that one-sided bond. Because, on the other side, it is you.”
“I wish it was not you,” Jungkook chews out, “I wish it was anyone but you,” Jungkook reaches to cup the side of Taehyung's face, “I wish, you enjoy your life here with your alpha when I leave with my pup. I promise, Taehyung, you will never hear from us again.”
Taehyung wipes his eyes, “so, you knew about my plan?”
Jungkook's smile drops, “heard you that day in Jimin's room.”
Taehyung sucks in a shocked breath, “so... since that kiss, it was all a lie?”
Jungkook watches him, “lie? On your part? Yes. I just played your game with you.”
Taehyung nods, “now you know why you are cursed, I guess. The moongoddess is kind. She would never give someone a fate like yours unless you deserve it. God,” his face twists with disgust, “you deserve it.”
Jungkook's jaw tightens.
Taehyung snorts, “also, you are so stupid!”
tw// mention of abortion, miscarriage
“The pup, your young,” Taehyung points at his stomach, “is going to be in me. I can easily get rid of them,” he shrugs, “I can prevent it from happening,” his jaw hardens, “your pup is mine too, Jungkook, and if you are forgetting, I will carry it for nine months!”
Jungkook watches the omega, “you will... do something to your own pup?”
Taehyung's chest hurts, he nods, “yes,” he grips the fur covering his stomach, “it is yours and I do not want it. I do not want to carry your bastard!”
The words ring in the hut, echoing around them.
Jungkook growls, “do not call it a bastard-”
“You do not want them!” Taehyung shouts back, “so, if there is no alpha father, that child is a bastard and I do not need to keep it!”
Jungkook stands up with Taehyung, they both glaring at each other.
Taehyung gives Jungkook a small smile, “so, wish there is no pup, alpha,” he takes a step back from Jungkook, “because, one way or another, you will not get anything here.”
Jungkook watches the omega rush inside the bedroom and slam the door.
Jungkook curses, storming out.
“You are carrying your alpha's youngs, Taehyung,” the eldest healer looks at him with a smile that her wrinkled face can muster at that old age, “congratulations.”
Taehyung feels how his stomach drops, everything crumbling around him. Tears brim in his eyes.
“He does not want them,” Taehyung trembles, hides his face in his hands, “he does not want to do anything with them or me.”
The healer freezes, eyes wide, “I am sorry?”
Taehyung cries harder, shaking his head, “even if he keeps the pups, he said he would not name them his.”
The healer has seen too many cases like this. She just did not expect it to come from Jungkook.
She bites her tongue, watches the omega break down and reaches to press a hand on Taehyung's head, “you can choose, my love. The alpha can leave, you will stay with them. Choose.”
- Yeah, so someone in that yoonmin arc said, 'I would love to read the taekook au. They are so cute!' HI, HOW ARE YOU DOING, MY LOVE?!
- Here's my kofi, if you want to support me or my writing : ko-fi.com/aamyungv
Taehyung is not sure how long he just sits there. Trying to 'choose,' as the healer asks him to. At the end, it feels like there is nothing to choose anyway.
Jungkook's words ring in his ear and Taehyung, cannot shake off the heavy feeling in his heart.
“I will be back tomorrow,” he tells the healer, looks at her with a small smile, “thank you for the checkup.”
The healer gives him a small smile, “I will keep this to myself. Do not worry, son.”
Taehyung lets out a resigned sigh, “thank you.”
He walks out of the hut.
On his way to Boemseok's hut, he notices Jiwoo. She is sitting with some of her friends, under a tree, and saying something to them. They all are laughing and sharing some snacks.
Taehyung pauses when he notices the shawl around her. It is Jungkook's, the alpha wears it often.
Taehyung remembers one of those nights, Jungkook wrapping that shawl around them both while they sit by the fireplace. Taehyung can still feel the warmth coming from the alpha and the scent the shawl carried. He looks away when Jiwoo nuzzles into it, burying her face in it.
Taehyung walks up to her, ignores how the laughters cease when he reaches the circle. Jiwoo looks up at him, questioning eyes on Taehyung.
“Do you know where Jungkook is?” Taehyung asks, “in his hut or on duty?”
Jiwoo's lips twitch, “you do not know where your own alpha is?”
“I do not go around following him like a stalker as you do,” Taehyung crosses his arms over his chest, “so, I thought you would know.”
Jiwoo's smile dims, eyes hardening, “he is on duty. I am waiting for him to get off of work, so we can go to that carnival in the next pack.”
Taehyung swallows, “what duty is he on today?”
“Do you know nothing about him?” Jiwoo wonders aloud, “as his omega, you do come off pretty callous.”
Taehyung hears the others trying to suppress their laughs and snorts behind their hands. He smiles, leaning closer to Jiwoo.
“I might not know where Jungkook is all the time,” Taehyung's smile vanishes to leave behind a glare, “but, I know who you are,” he watches how Jiwoo's face goes pale, “so, if you really want to cross a line with me, I will make sure I help you cross the line of this pack. Yes?”
“Do not play with fire,” Taehyung pats her cheek, “now, be a good girl, tell me where he is working today.”
Jiwoo's throat bobs, “he is working near the river. The dam we are building, he is working there.”
Taehyung nods, straightens up with a smile, “see. It was not hard.”
Jungkook cannot stop thinking about last night. He walks around the river, supervising the work of the dam, while his mind stays with the omega.
He watches the workers move around, carrying thing to each other. He thinks if he should go and check the healer's hut for Taehyung.
Jungkook combs his hair back, frustrated. Maybe he should just forget about it. Whatever it is, it is done. He is done. He should just feel good that he got Taehyung exactly where he wanted the omega to be and leave.
But, he cannot stop worrying. He hates himself for that.
Jungkook turns away from the river, going towards the treeline to rest under one, when he sees Taehyung.
The omega is coming this way and Jungkook freezes. Taehyung has seen him. His steps falter for a second and then he squares his shoulders and starts moving again.
“What are you doing here?” Jungkook frowns, looking around at the workers, “there are places you should not go-”
“I am carrying,” Taehyung stops him, face void of any emotions, “and, you do not want to be a part of it, so I will not say, your youngs, but yes.”
“I will keep the baby, or babies,” Taehyung shrugs, “you do not need to worry about it. I am not,” his voice wavers, Taehyung pauses for a second to steady himself, “I am not giving them up to you or anyone. If you want, you can do as you said. I will take the blames.”
“The pack already did their worse,” Taehyung lets out a deep breath, “now, if they want to throw me out, I will go.”
Jungkook's eyes flicker from Taehyung's face to his stomach and back to his face, “you... are carrying my pups?”
“I am carrying,” Taehyung corrects, “my pups.”
“I am just as much involved-” Jungkook stops when Taehyung lets out a short laugh.
“Yes, I regret that,” Taehyung hugs himself, “I regret that they are yours,” his eyes gleam, “but, do not worry. After today, no one would know. I will deny, even if you say they are yours.”
Jungkook does not want to lose it in front of so many people. He seriously does not want to say the things that cloud his mind when there are too many ears. He tries to calm himself with a long breath and glares at the omega.
“I will talk to you tonight, now go home.”
Taehyung shakes his head, “no,” he juts his chin out, “I want to talk right now. Right here-”
He stops, jumps when Jungkook takes one step to come and stand right in front of his face. The alpha seethes, eyes oozing the anger.
“Go home,” Jungkook hisses, “right now.”
“No!” Taehyung stomps his foot, “you are not welcome in my hut ever again! Let's talk here. Whatever you have to say, tell me here!”
“Omega, go home!” Jungkook thunders, “right now!”
Taehyung flinches, finally noticing the others looking their way. Everyone is staring.
“Fine,” Taehyung ignores every eyes on them, glares at the alpha, “fine, I will go home. You go to your damn Jiwoo and take her to the carnival and fuck her on the way, then when you come back, we can talk!”
He storms away without another word.
Jungkook's ears ring, heating up.
He hears the low hums of those people talking. He watches Taehyung go and digs his feet into the ground to not follow the omega and tell him something that will humiliate him just as much as he feels right now.
Jungkook turns his back to the omega and tries to calm himself.
Jungkook looks at the others, “the show is over,” he rumbles in his chest, “get to work!”
Everyone scurries away from him, leaving him to his own thoughts.
As hours pass, Jungkook steers himself away from those thoughts and those words. Until Jiwoo shows up.
Seeing Jiwoo and recalling Taehyung's words, it all swirls in his head. Jungkook lets her drag him away from his work, now that he is done. He gets on the carriage with her and Jiwoo leans on his shoulder, closing her eyes as it starts to move.
“Would you leave if I leave?”
Jiwoo looks at him, frowns, “where are we going?”
Jungkook looks outside of the carriage, “anywhere. Just, away from here.”
Jiwoo watches him for a long time, “okay.”
Jungkook whips around, “what?”
Jiwoo gives him a small smile, “okay. If you want, let's leave.”
Jungkook watches her and then looks back outside, “I will rent a place for tonight. I just,” his eyes close on their own accord, “I think I will lose it and do something I will regret if I see him again today.”
Jiwoo's touch feels cool against his skin when she holds his hand.
Jungkook rents a room in the inn by the carnival. He does not go to the carnival, but lies on the bed while Jiwoo goes out to explore the place.
By the time night rolls in, Jiwoo comes back to Jungkook sleeping on the bed, exhausted. She crawls up beside him, lying down.
Jiwoo never, not even for a second, considered Jungkook as something more. But, as she lies down and the alpha's arm comes to hold her by her waist to pull her closer, her breath hitches.
Jungkook is fast asleep. Jiwoo watches him, eyes roaming over the alpha's face.
Jungkook rolls over then, arm tightening around her with his nose burying into her neck. Jiwoo startles, arms slowly wrapping around the alpha's broad shoulders. Her nails scrape against Jungkook's bare back, feeling the muscles under her touch. Jungkook hums in his sleep.
Jiwoo closes her eyes, nails digging into Jungkook's back muscles as she tries to force herself into a slumber. Jungkook nuzzles closer, a growl escaping his lips when Jiwoo squirms a little.
Jiwoo goes quiet, biting back a whimper, her nails scratching against Jungkook's back.
Jungkook frowns in his sleep. The scent against his nostrils make him nauseous. The calming scent of the omega that makes him sleep is nowhere to be found. His arms feel the curves of the omega, and it just feels weird. He blinks, fighting his sleep to open his eyes.
Jungkook freezes when he notices Jiwoo, fast asleep. The candle by the bed is blown off. It is too late at night. Jungkook looks down to see his arm around Jiwoo, her arms around his shoulders.
Jungkook flinches back, scrambling as far away as he can without toppling over.
He feels it then. The gut-wrenching pain that courses through his veins. His mark over his wrist throbbing. This is new. Jungkook does not understand this. He tugs the ribbons off his wrist to see the cross bleeding. Fresh blood oozing out.
Jungkook stares at it, confused.
Jungkook looks at the omega on the bed and down at his wrist. A shaky breath escapes him. He swings his feet off the bed and stands up. With rushed steps, he shrugs on his shirt and pauses by the foot to look at Jiwoo's sleeping form. He should not leave. She will be alone here.
But he leaves. He pays a waitress to keep Jiwoo company and tell her that he left before he is storming out of the inn.
Jungkook rents a horse, noticing by the stars that it is almost midnight. He starts towards the pack and when he reaches, the pack is fast asleep.
Jungkook drops off by the boarder, telling the guards to return the horse. He runs to the hut where Taehyung is.
Jungkook pauses when he sees the dim lights of the fireplace. He knocks on the door. No one answers. With a curse, he slams his hand on the door again.
“Fuck this!” Jungkook curses, going around the hut to crack open the window by the kitchen and jumps inside.
Taehyung is lying by the fireplace. In that makeshift bed, Jungkook made for him there. Just a lot of fur and piles of mattresses. The omega is curled up in it.
“You know, I feel it when you are with others,” Taehyung murmurs, eyes stuck on that blazing fire, “now. Because of the mating bite. I feel it.”
Jungkook takes a slow step forward, “I did not sleep with her!”
Taehyung does not reply right away. Staying quiet.
“Did you feel me?” Taehyung murmurs, “is that why you are here?”
Jungkook frowns, “my,” he looks down at his wrist, “my mark started to bleed. This never happened unless you were with someone else-”
Taehyung closes his eyes, rolling to bury his face into the furs, “right.”
Taehyung buries his face into the furs that smell of the two of them. A makeshift nest that carries their scents. Tears gather in Taehyung's eyes as he tries to fight the fearsome realization that the bond is forming.
The threads are tangling because now Jungkook can feel him.
Taehyung looks up at the alpha, tears brimming in his eyes. He found those books. He read about them by now.
He knows. This is the first step. The moongoddess is twisting the seams of their bonds together. A few more of those threads knitting together and that flower will bloom.
Taehyung buries his face into the fur and breaks into a sob when he thinks how unfair it is.
How naked his feelings are for the alpha to feel and pick up on when Taehyung wants to hide them. He wants to deny them, and yet they are right there. For the alpha to know if he looks.
Taehyung forces himself to turn on his back, lying there to watch the fire burn the woods to ashes. He smiles at the destructive power of the fire and sighs.
“Why are you here?” he tries to breathe through his mouth because Jungkook reeks of that omega's scent.
Jungkook is not sure why he is here either. He hesitates, looking at the fire and back at the omega. Taehyung lies on his back, one arm resting on his stomach, palm spread over it. The other is outstretched towards the fire, the luminous flames are casting an orange hue on him.
“We need to talk,” Jungkook comes closer and Taehyung sits up.
“Take one more step towards me and I will vomit all over the floor,” Taehyung buries his face in his hands, “go and shower,” he waves his hand, “there is water stored in the bathroom.”
Jungkook silently follows.
While Jungkook goes to the bathroom, Taehyung follows. He points at the buckets silently and leaves to get a towel from the racks.
When he comes back, Jungkook has his back to him, taking his shirt off. Taehyung freezes, grip tightening on the towel, when he sees those marks.
Jungkook throws the shirt on the floor, getting his hands on the waistband of his pant when he looks over at Taehyung.
“What?” he wonders, frowning, “what happened?”
Taehyung sees the marks around Jungkook's nape, “nothing,” he breathes out, “here. Shower fast.”
Jungkook comes out of the shower in that towel. His skin glistening with waterdroplets. The alpha walks around the kitchen to pour himself some water.
“Anything you have I can wear?” Jungkook wonders, “my shirt is soaked. So are my pants.”
Taehyung shrugs, “pick anything.”
Jungkook looks at the bedroom and back at Taehyung. He has never been in that bedroom since that day he came to fix the nest.
With a silent curse, he goes inside to pick up a shirt that looks like his size. He shrugs it on, doing the buttons as he walks out.
Taehyung looks up.
“That is my alpha's shirt,” Taehyung grips the fur, “take it off.”
Jungkook freezes, looking at the omega, “huh?”
Taehyung's eyes burn, “that shirt belongs to my alpha. Take it off.”
Jungkook looks down at the shirt and back at Taehyung, “he is not coming back to wear it.”
Taehyung gets up, “he comes back or not, you are not tinting his things!” he takes a step towards Jungkook, “take the damn shirt off! You do not deserve to touch anything that is his! You are filthy! You are disgusting! You are cursed! Do not touch his things!”
Jungkook grabs Taehyung by his elbow, jerks him forward, “touched his omega,” he hisses against Taehyung's lips, “no?” he places his hand over Taehyung's flat stomach, “his omega is carrying my youngs. No?” he glares at Taehyung, “that did not bring him out of his grave. Right?!”
Taehyung grips the shirt, “you got to touch his omega because he is not here! Take the damn shirt off!”
Jungkook snorts, “trust me,” his other arm sneaks around Taehyung's waist, “if I wanted, I could have taken you away from him and sent him to his grave with my bare hands.”
“I just did not want you that bad,” Jungkook lets Taehyung go, “that is the point.”
Taehyung stumbles, eyes skimming over Jungkook's face, “right. You did not want me that bad. You just wanted to get rid of that damn mark. Otherwise, your heart lies somewhere else. Now I know.”
“I am sorry?” Jungkook balls his fists, “what do you mean by that?”
Taehyung snorts, gestures with his chin, “check the marks all over you! You are not going walk in here and try to act all high and mighty when you were busy fucking Jiwoo the whole evening! That cunning witch!”
Jungkook glares at the omega, “while you were busy fucking yourself on your alpha's bed, in his hut, in his nest?!”
Taehyung grits his teeth, “do not even try to turn it around on me! I finally got your plan! This was your plan all along!” he laughs, “you want Jiwoo. Shit!”
“You want Jiwoo, and you just needed me to get rid of that damn bond. In the meantime, like a fool,” Taehyung wipes at his eyes furiously, “I let you have sex with me and here I am!”
Jungkook blinks at the omega, “my god, do you even think before you open your damn mouth?!”
“Do not try to pin it on me when you were just as willing to sleep with me!” Jungkook gives a laugh, “funny, how your alpha did not come out of his grave then! You know why?! Because he is dead! Gone,” Jungkook screams, “you cannot bring him back! Move on!”
Taehyung's resolve concretes, he glares at the alpha in front of him, “I would much rather say my pups are his than yours. I will tell everyone my pups are his youngs.”
For a second, there is complete silence. Then Jungkook takes those two steps to crowd Taehyung.
Taehyung nods, “yes! I will say my pups are his-”
“Do not,” Jungkook holds Taehyung by his hips, “even,” his fingers dig into Taehyung's sides, “finish that sentence!”
Taehyung stumbles, hands coming to rest on Jungkook's chest, “watch me. I will never accept they are yours!”
“I would rather people call them bastards than yours,” Taehyung fists the shirt in his grip, “you still smell like her,” his face twists, “shit, you still smell like her!”
Jungkook snickers, “and, you are in his hut! Wearing,” he looks down at Taehyung, “his robe!”
Taehyung holds his breath, “well, he comforts me. Even without being here.”
Jungkook gives him a hollow smile, Jiwoo comforts me too. That's why I was with her.”
Taehyung's eyes waver, “then, why are you here now?”
Jungkook shrugs, “the pup. I am here for the pup.”
“I will keep the pup or pups,” Taehyung shrugs, “raise them. I guess,” he breathes out a snort, “after they are born, we can try to break the bond. Because, no way in hell, I will even consider helping you when you are fucking her.”
Jungkook curses, “and, what are you doing?!”
“You are blaming me for cheating without knowing shit. You are making it sound like you did me a favour by trying to fall in love with me, when you knew very well that you were lying and never felt shit for me! You are still in your dead alpha's hut, mourning him!”
“Tell me, Taehyung,” Jungkook hisses, “why won't you take me to your bedroom?! Why won't you ever let us be on that bed?! Do you think I do not notice?! How you are always keeping that room for yourself because you do not want my scent on his things. You still love him?!”
“If you are going to accuse me of cheating on you, then you are blatantly doing the same! Emotionally! You are!”
“I am setting you free, am I not?!” Taehyung shoves at Jungkook's chest, “you are free! Go! This is what you wanted. You said it yourself! You wanted to leave!”
“You said, you will deny the pups too! So, do it!” Taehyung screams.
“No, I have a better idea!” Jungkook takes a hold of Taehyung's wrists, pushes them behind Taehyung to hold them in place, “how about you give me my pups and I go and start my family with Jiwoo?!”
Jungkook uses that grip to jerk Taehyung forward. Chest to chest.
“How about,” he breathes out, lips pressed against the side of Taehyung's cheek, “I take my pups, and then I reject you? How about I throw you out after you give birth? Then you can mourn the pup or pups too!”
Taehyung closes his eyes, tears burning behind his eyelids.
Jungkook presses his lips over his eyes, feeling the tears, “how about that? Hmm? You will be here, on your own. In your alpha's hut, mourning him. I will be on my way with Jiwoo. Sounds nice. No? Perfect.”
“They do not need to know you,” Jungkook trails his lips down Taehyung's cheek, to his jaw, “I can leave with them, this pack. Jiwoo agreed, I asked her to leave with me,” he feels Taehyung tremble, “in a new pack, I can introduce her as my omega. She will be finally free too.”
Jungkook stills, looks at the omega, “what?”
Taehyung nods, “okay,” he squirms, silently trying to get out of Jungkook's grip, “if that is what you want, fine,” Taehyung steps back when Jungkook frees him, turns away, “then, come here nine months later for the pup.”
Taehyung sniffles, breathing through his mouth, “but, can I ask something as the,” he stops for a second, “surrogate? It feels like I will be just that, because I cannot harm the baby,” he sighs, looking over his shoulder at Jungkook, “be civil for the pack till you leave?”
“You will leave, but I will have to stay here,” Taehyung grips the edge of the counter behind himself, “so, just,” he waves his hand, “can you pretend to like, we wanted this, and we are happy and all that?”
Jungkook frowns, immobile.
“So, when you leave, they blame you.”
“Because, you will be gone, anyway,” Taehyung shrugs, “you would not face the backlash. I will have to stay here.”
Jungkook's throat feels dry, “yes, I can do that,” he says without giving it much thought, “I can pretend like it is all okay for nine months. Yes.”
Taehyung nods, “good, okay,” he inhales deeply, wiping his eyes, “then,” he looks ahead, trying hard not to break down, “you can go now. Jiwoo must be waiting.”
Jungkook takes a step back, suddenly it all feels too quiet around them. The room too suffocating.
Jungkook rounds the counter, his steps falter. He looks at the fireplace and looks over at Taehyung, who has not moved an inch.
“If we want anyone to believe this,” his voice sounds foreign in his own ears, “then you have to do your part. Move in with me.”
Taehyung looks up.
“I cannot go to that hut anymore,” Taehyung shakes his head.
“I,” Jungkook looks back at the fireplace, “I asked for a new hut to the packleader today, after work. It will be ready by next week.”
Taehyung swallows, “okay,” he scratches the surface of the counter, “let's do it.”
Jungkook stops by the door, “forgot about this.”
Taehyung watches the alpha take the shirt off and throw it at the chair. He watches the alpha leave after closing the door behind himself.
Taehyung goes to that chair and picks that shirt up to bury his face into it.
It still smells of Boemseok. Jungkook's scent muted because of the soap he used. The same one Boemseok used for himself. Taehyung goes to sit by the fireplace, kneels in front of it.
He looks at the fire burn and with a tired sigh, he holds the shirt out to catch on flames.
Taehyung watches it burn, drops it into the fire when the heat licks his hand.
“How can I take you to the bedroom when I have not gone there since you,” Taehyung closes his eyes, “since you touched me. How can I let you see a part of me even I am terrified of looking at?”
Taehyung gets up, goes to that bedroom to look at that cold and dusty nest. He watches the nest from the edge of the bed and thinks how it still somehow smells of Boemseok. Taehyung looks around the hut with a tired sigh. He feels drained.
He comes back to the living room.
Without a single thought, he picks up a log, the fire burns at the end of it. He watches it for a few second and then goes inside the bedroom.
He throws the log on the bed, watches the furs catch on fire. He stands there, watching the bed burn and slowly turns to leave.
Taehyung bites back a sob when he realizes how, in that smoke, in that blazing fire, he feels comforted.
It smells like Jungkook.
All around him.
Taehyung walks out of the hut, leaving the fire to spread on its own.
Taehyung ignores all curious eyes and goes inside the packhouse. He knocks on the door, knowing it is way past midnight.
Jimin opens the door, blinking back sleep, “Tae?” he frowns, sleep leaving his eyes, “what-”
“My hut is on fire,” Taehyung walks in to drop on the bed.
Jimin blinks, “wait... what?!”
Taehyung buries his face into Jimin's pillows, “I set it on fire.”
Jimin slams the door closed behind himself, “wait, what?!”
Taehyung looks at Jimin and sees the disbelieving look on the omega's face and burst out laughing.
“I set it on fire!”
“I set it all on fire,” he giggles, warm tears rolling out of his eyes, “shit, chim. Can you see it?!” he points at the window, “the hut is on fire!”
Jimin rushes to the window, “holy shit! Tae!”
Taehyung rolls on the bed, the pain curls up his spine, “and, it smelt like him.”
“And, he smells like her now,” Taehyung claps his hands, throwing his head back to laugh some more, “now, he smells like her and I smell like him, and he does not smell like himself-” he stops when Jimin comes to hug him, pulling him into a bone-crushing hug.
Jimin cries with him, Taehyung watches his best friend sob with him.
“Why are you crying?” Taehyung giggles, “you do not even know how it feels,” he giggles some more, “how it feel-”
“You are crying,” Jimin sniffles, rocking Taehyung in his arms, “that is enough for me to cry.”
There is a commotion outside of their hut, and Jimin frowns when Jin bursts inside the room.
“The boarder,” Jin points at the window, “Hobi caught the rogue!” he pants, “the rogue!” he comes inside to rush to the window, pointing, “the rogue is finally caught.”
Taehyung and Jimin share a look. They both get up to go and stand by Jin.
Jimin's window looks over the entire pack. Jin points at the boarder.
“The rogue was inside the pack, can you believe?” Jin hisses, “the fire startled it, and it tried to run towards the river.”
a/n - I do not remember saying yg was in the pack for five years after ym mated. If I said that, we are going to forget it as a plothole because, I cannot edit that part out and otherwise the timeline isn't matching. Okay? OKAY!
SHUSH, YOU SAW NO HOLES! MOVE ALONG!
“Do you want to go and see?” Jin has some excitement written on his face, “do you?”
“Is it safe?” Jimin wonders, biting his lip, “I mean, he is a rogue.”
Taehyung turns away, “I am not going anywhere. I need to rest. I am feeling drained after setting my house on fire.”
Jin flinches, “oh, my God, your house is on fire!”
Jimin pats Jin's back, “too late for that reaction, hyung.”
Jin stares at the fire, “oh, my god, how?!”
Taehyung lies on his back, watching the ceiling. Jimin comes to lie down on top of him and Taehyung winces.
“Not on me!”
“I am pregnant.”
The room goes quiet.
Taehyung frowns, thinking how his voice sounds so unfamiliar to himself. Jimin springs up.
Taehyung looks at the omega, “I... uhhh...” he does not want to say it now. Not yet.
But, then Jimin is getting up and running to Jin to grab his stomach.
“You are pregnant?!” Jimin asks, eyes wide.
Taehyung sits up, breathing out. It is not him. Oh, thank God.
He watches how Jin blushes, a smile lurking on his lips while he nods at them both.
“For how long?!” Jimin wonders, dragging Jin to the bed.
Jin giggles, “well, a few months. I was waiting to tell you at the right time, but it never comes. So,” he shrugs, “right now you two are here and no one else is.”
Jimin throws his arms around the omega, “oh, my lord!”
Taehyung watches how happy Jin looks. He grips the robe over his belly. Forces a smile on his lips when Jin grabs their hands to press it on his stomach. There is a small bump. Taehyung chokes on a sob.
“Hyung knows?” He asks.
Jin nods, eager, “he was so happy when I told him!”
Jin squeezes Taehyung's hand in his, “god, Tae, he was so ecstatic. He almost carried me back home from the healer's hut, I was so ashamed. Then, we,” he waves his hand, “you know.”
Taehyung nods, throat bobbing, “oh, great.”
Jimin sighs, dreamy, “it is how it should be!”
“I wonder how my alpha will feel when I am pregnant and tell him,” Jimin hugs his knees, giggling, “I wonder where he is.”
Jin nudges Jimin, “you mean, Taemin?”
Jimin giggles, “maybe? I,” he looks outside, “just hope, whoever it is, I meet them soon. I cannot wait.”
Jimin waves his hand, “forget about me, tell me,” he pinches Jin, “how Namjoon hyung acts now that he knows you are pregnant?”
Jin swats his hand away, blushing, “Well, for starters, he needs to leave me alone. He is doting on me too much. All the time trailing me, making sure-”
The door bursts open and the omegas jump. Taehyung whips around to see Jungkook by the door. The alpha looks sweaty, his arms sporting a few burnt marks. Ash all over his clothes.
Taehyung blinks, “wh-”
Jungkook runs inside to grab Taehyung, jerking him off the bed, “you!”
Jungkook breathes out, cursing loudly, “you asshole!” he screams, hands feeling up Taehyung, stopping on his belly and up to his face, “you are fine!”
Taehyung blinks, “y-yes...? What happened?”
Jungkook glares, “what happened?!” his voice booms in the room, “are you nuts?!”
“What is going on?” Taehyung wonders, “what-”
Jungkook pulls him into a tight hug, burying his face against Taehyung's neck, “fuck! I thought you were in that hut! Fuck, fuck, fuck!”
Taehyung stills, pressed against Jungkook's chest, “what...”
Jungkook cups his face, checking all over him, “are you okay?” his breaths come out ragged, “are you okay?!”
Taehyung nods, dumbly, “yes. I am fine.”
Jungkook's eyes still wander, frantically searching for any scar or wound, when his own skin sports those marks.
“You are hurt,” Taehyung says, “you should see the healers-”
Jungkook presses his forehead against Taehyung, breathing still harsh, “fuck! I thought,” he shakes his head, “it was burning when I got there, Taehyung!”
“He still ran inside,” Namjoon speaks from the door.
Taehyung feels how his heart drops, “are you crazy?! You stupid, idiot alpha!”
Jungkook glares at him, “do not blame me! I thought you were inside!”
“Why would I be inside a burning house?!” Taehyung glares, “are you crazy! You could have died!”
“I thought you did!”
“Why would I stay inside that burning hut?!” Taehyung glares, “why would you get inside?! You could have-”
“I thought you were in that damn bedroom!” Jungkook shouts, “trying to follow that-”
Taehyung grips Jungkook's shirt, “you could have died! Oh, my god!”
“You are such an idiot! You do not think, you do shit like th-” Taehyung stops when Jungkook pulls him into a kiss.
“Shut up!” Jungkook curses against his lips, “shut the fu'k up!”
Taehyung trembles, feeling the alpha's arms around him.
“Ohh,” Jimin whispers, “they confessed?”
“When did this happen?” Jin whispers, “god, what did we miss?!”
Namjoon comes to stand beside Jin, “well, the way Jungkook ran inside the hut, even when it was burning down, I had no doubt they confessed.”
Taehyung feels the smile his lips stretch on, tears in his eyes.
He holds the alpha by his hips, “why would you do that?” he whispers against Jungkook's lips, “for me?”
Jungkook pulls back a little, eyes finally settling, his hand rests on Taehyung's stomach, “for my pups. Not you.”
Taehyung bites his lower lip, pulling back.
Jimin jumps on the two of them. Arms around them.
“Oh, my god, finally!” he cries out, “you two are in love! Oh, my god!”
Jin laughs, “oh, yes! Finally! God, we prayed for this day!”
Namjoon sighs, a smile on his lips, “this feels so surreal.”
As Jimin pull them both in a hug, Taehyung buries his face in Jimin's chest.
He will do it. He will hold his side of the promise, in hope that Jungkook holds his.
It is good, Jungkook thinks, if he never sees Taehyung again, he will be fine with time.
It will be fine.
“Do I have to go with you?” Taehyung whines, carrying the tray of dry fruits behind Jimin who is carrying a tray of clothes, “my god, this is too far!”
Jimin glares at him, “father said we have to welcome the outcast,” he sighs, “so, as his representative, I am going.”
Taehyung watches the hut at the end of the pack. He feels nauseous. He vomited everything since last night. His legs quiver, muscles straining as he tries to move. He is sweating because of the discomfort.
“You look pale, is everything okay?” Jimin asks.
Taehyung nods silently.
By the door of the hut, he sees Jungkook and Jiwoo. They are talking among themselves. Jungkook's hand in hers and her frown deep while she points at the wounds and says something.
Taehyung looks away when the alpha turns to look at them.
Jimin sighs, “finally we are here.”
Taehyung focuses on the task in hand. He walks in beside Jimin, completely ignoring the two by the door.
Taehyung and Jimin stop when they see the alpha inside the hut. The outcast, Yoongi, sits on the bed, his eyes focused on Hoseok who is talking animatedly.
Jimin bows, “welcome to our pack, alpha. I, Park Jimin, the packleader's son, welcome you to our pack.”
Taehyung watches how the alpha's eyes burn, that jaw locks. The gentle expression slowly ebbing off to give way to something sinister. Then the alpha's expression goes blank.
“Thank you, packleader's son,” the alpha's voice is gravelly, “for the kind words.”
Jimin nods, a little startled at the cold tone of the alpha's voice, “here are some presents. For you to settle in.”
Taehyung follows the other omegas to keep everything by the foot of the bed.
Jimin holds his one out and Yoongi eyes the items before looking up at him.
“Keep it there too,” Yoongi says, “thank you.”
The omegas gasp, a little startled. Taehyung watches how Jimin goes a little stiff.
“You are to take the leader's offering with respect. In your hands.”
Yoongi visibly rolls his eyes and holds his hand out. Jimin silently gives the tray and Yoongi places it on the bed.
“Thank you,” the alpha nods, “now, if the packleader's son will excuse me. I was interrupted.”
Jimin flinches, a little shocked at the dismissive words, “sure.”
Jimin storms out of the hut and Taehyung bows to the alpha before he turns to follow. Taehyung gets out of the hut and his head sways. He grips the doorframe, squinting at the harsh rays of the sun. He gulps, throat feeling dry. Taehyung takes a step forward and then it hits him.
With a hand pressed over his mouth, Taehyung takes a swift turn towards the river. He stumbles near the narrow path and doubles over.
It feels like only water is coming out of him now, there is nothing in his stomach. The headache intensifies.
“Tae, are you okay?!”
Jimin comes running, “oh, my lord. What happened?”
Taehyung waves his hand, “nothing. I am fine,” he wipes his mouth, “I guess, the stress of moving from one hut to another and all,” he tries to smile, feeling exhausted, “that is all.”
Jimin curses, “wait,” he looks around...
Jimin waves his hand, “Sangwook hyung!”
Taehyung watches the guard look over, coming down to them.
Jimin points at Taehyung, “can you help me take him to the packhouse?”
Sangwook nods, “of course.”
Taehyung lets the alpha hold him around the waist, supporting him.
Taehyung curses, “I do not think this is appropriate. If someone sees,” he looks at Jimin, “they will talk-”
“You are with me, taking help from my guard because you are ill,” Jimin glares, “I would like to see someone open their mouth.”
Taehyung goes quiet after that.
Sangwook almost picks him up when Taehyung doubles over again, vomiting.
“You should see the healer,” Jimin says, worried.
“Yes, you should see the healer.”
They all go quiet. Taehyung looks over to see Jungkook. The alpha gives him a smile, his eyes are eerily empty.
“I will take it from here,” Jungkook says, does not wait for a confirmation before he is pulling Taehyung to himself, “thank you.”
Jimin rolls his eyes, a playful smile on his lips, “come on, kookie. No need to be possessive. We were trying to help. You are so endearing!”
Jungkook gives Jimin a laugh, “well, I am possessive,” his arm tightens around Taehyung, “he is my omega,” his eyes shift to Taehyung, the smile turning sour, “would not want the pack to see him all over another alpha now. Would I?”
Taehyung's skin crawls, his jaw tightening.
Taehyung laughs, “my alpha here has no problem if he goes off with his friends. Beta, omega, who knows,” he smiles at Jimin, “doing god knows what, but, god forbid I take help from someone when,” his eyes shift to Jungkook, “I feel like my inside is tearing apart. Typical idiot.”
Jimin laughs, “you two and your bickering,” he waves his hand, “take him to the healer, Kook. I will see you. I have some work.”
Taehyung watches Jimin go and then squirms, “let me go!”
“Why?” Jungkook speaks through his gritted teeth, “so you can go with that alpha?”
“Yes,” Taehyung nods, “so I can take him back to his place and ask him to bend me over because, damn, have you looked at him?!”
Jungkook's nostrils flare, “do not start!”
“I am the one starting?!” Taehyung demands, “are you, for real, telling me that?!”
Jungkook grabs him by the arm, “just, let's go to the healer. Talking to you is such a time waste!”
“Of course,” Taehyung snorts, stumbling to keep up with the alpha's pace, “you would much rather be with that omega and spend your time bending her over!”
Taehyung winces when he feels another swirl in his stomach. He turns to vomit on the grass. His throat feels scratchy, it burns. Only water is coming out of him now as he throws up. Jungkook stands there, watching the omega struggle. Taehyung wipes his mouth, trying to breathe.
“Come here,” Jungkook steps up to him, voice rough, “hold me.”
Taehyung gasps, startled, when Jungkook picks him up, “I can walk!”
Jungkook snorts, “yes, saw that. Taking too long.”
Taehyung holds the alpha by his neck, face heating up when the pack members stop to stare.
“People are looking!” Taehyung feels mortified, “oh, god, they will talk!”
Jungkook walks, eyes set ahead, “that your alpha carried you? Shocking! How come you were not thinking about this with that alpha?”
Taehyung glares, “well, he was not carrying me! Also, shut up now!”
Taehyung leans his head against Jungkook's chest. His head throbbing.
“Let me down, or I might vomit on you,” he whispers, “I do not feel well.”
Jungkook shrugs, “go on. You are clearly not well enough to walk that far.”
Taehyung closes his eyes, “yes, whatever.”
“Take care of him!” The healer swats Jungkook on the chest, “he is pregnant. Clearly not with one pup. Two or, maybe, three. He is weak. He needs constant support. Do not leave his side. Make sure he rests. Eats. Sleeps. Take some time off from duty. This is your duty too!”
“More than one?!” Taehyung grasps the bedsheet, “are you… oh, my god!”
The healer smiles at him, squeezing his knee, “yes. When they are born, you will surely have no time for yourself. At least till they learn to shift.”
Taehyung does not smile, his eyes on Jungkook.
“Do not worry about that,” Jungkook murmurs, “you will have all the time in your hands. I promise.”
The healer laughs, “a good alpha.”
Taehyung breathes out a short laugh too, “too good to be true.”
Jungkook looks at the healer, “can a pup survive without the omega parent?”
The healer's smile dims, she looks confused, “yes…? Why?”
Jungkook shrugs, “no reason,” he steps up to the omega on the examination bed, “I am just asking.”
Taehyung looks away.
“I will give you some herbs,” the healer smiles at Taehyung, “wait here.”
“Make sure the pups know who their parents are,” the healer speaks while she makes the medicines, “scent the omega often. The nest, it should smell of the two of you. Try to keep the bedroom only for you two. Only your scents and presence there. To not confuse them as they grow.”
“Talk to them,” the healer smiles while working, “let them hear you. Let them know your voices. Keep the atmosphere happy and safe for them. Yes?”
Jungkook hums, eyes boring on Taehyung's face. He cups Taehyung's face, turning it towards him, so Taehyung looks him in the eyes.
Jungkook leans in, so their lips are inches apart.
“So, I should bring Jiwoo's stuff over,” his eyes trail from Taehyung's lips to his eyes, “and, you can use scent blockers from now on. Or, she can come over, so they can hear her.”
Taehyung shivers when Jungkook steps closer.
Those lips press against Taehyung's jaw, “or, would you prefer I fuck her on the bed, in that nest. Our scent-”
“Stop!” Taehyung grips Jungkook's shoulder, “stop talking.”
Jungkook watches him, “why? You heard her. The pups need to know who their parents are. No?”
Taehyung is not sure if it is the pheromones of the pregnancy, or if he is just simply that emotional. He pulls Jungkook in for a kiss, stealing the alpha's words from his mouth.
Jungkook is frozen for a second, and then his arms come around Taehyung, kissing him back.
The kiss is biting. Rough. They both are angry. At each other. For each other. Their hands grasp each other, nails scraping, leaving marks. Taehyung feels the alpha's teeth biting down on his lower lip, sucking onto it. His own teeth sink onto the alpha's tongue...
“Okay! Not here!” The healer speaks from where she stands, “I am too old to witness this!”
Taehyung pulls back, startled, eyes fixed on the alpha, “sorry,” he looks at the healer, “I was just,” he waves his hand.
The healer rolls her eyes with a teasing smile, “take these.”
“These are for the omega to take after his meals,” she holds them out for Jungkook and Taehyung to see, “these are for you to keep with yourself. So, whenever you feel nauseous, you inhale the scent, and it calms the nerves. These are for you to put in some oil and massage.”
“Massage your belly regularly, otherwise it will start to show marks as the pregnancy goes on, yes?”
Taehyung nods, taking the medicines.
The healer nods, “now leave. Come back here after three weeks. I will check you up then.”
Jungkook picks Taehyung up again, walking out.
Jungkook decorates the hut while Taehyung sits and instructs him. He makes the alpha do the same thing at least four times, just to make everything perfect, and the alpha curses profusely while following the orders.
“Okay, the nest looks weird,” Taehyung observes.
“I have moved the bed nine times in an hour,” Jungkook warns him, “there are no possible angles left for me to move it.”
Taehyung makes a face, “the shape of the bed is weird.”
Jungkook closes his eyes, pinching the tip of his nose, “it is square. Just as it should be.”
“I want a star shaped bed,” Taehyung's eyes widen with excitement, “imagine sleeping on a star shaped bed?!” he looks at the bed, “it will feel like I am on a star!”
Jungkook watches the wide smile on Taehyung's face at the ridiculous idea and lets out a deep breath.
“Fine?” Taehyung asks, a little surprised.
Jungkook lets out a deep breath, “for that, I need a day! It will take me a day.”
Taehyung nods, biting back a smile, “can you,” he looks at the walls, “can I draw on them?”
Jungkook points a finger at him, “no climbing ladders!”
Taehyung nods, “as far as I can reach.”
Jungkook nods, “better.”
Taehyung goes to work and Jungkook starts with the bed outside the hut. It takes him a day to shape the bed, and then he leaves it outside to dry. When he walks inside, the omega is asleep on the floor.
Jungkook slowly picks Taehyung up, taking him to the bed. Taehyung squirms, looking at him through heavy lids.
Jungkook watches the omega, “tomorrow. It will be star shaped tomorrow.”
Taehyung nods, “do you,” his lids move, “want to bring Jiwoo over?”
Jungkook's throat bobs, “no,” he looks away, “I will not bring her over.”
“Her clothes-” Taehyung whispers, “or-”
“Go to sleep,” Jungkook murmurs, watching the omega fight it, “rest.”
Taehyung nods, “just… tell me before you bring her over. I need to prepare myself-”
Jungkook said it all to get a reaction out of Taehyung. He thought saying it would hurt Taehyung, but it hurts him somehow. He looks down at Taehyung's face, and the omega's large eyes are trying to stay focused on him.
“I will never bring her here,” Jungkook confesses, “never.”
He leans to press his lips against Taehyung's forehead, “the star is for the moon only.”
Taehyung watches him, eyes glistening, “moon…?”
Jungkook sighs, exhausted, not because of the hardwork, because of the act he has to put up, “yes. You are. Now sleep. It is late.”
Taehyung falls asleep. Exhausted himself. Jungkook goes back to pour some oil in a small bowl. He warms it up, puts the herbs into it and brings it back to the bedroom.
He sits by Taehyung's feet, takes Taehyung's feet in his lap and starts to massage them with the warm oil.
Taehyung sighs, toes curling. Jungkook smiles at the omega's nose scrunch and makes sure to knead the feet nicely while Taehyung sleeps.
When done, he cuts a few herbs and puts them beside Taehyung's bed. He knows the omega wakes up feeling nauseous and this might help.
Taehyung whines when Jungkook pulls the quilt over him. The omega kicks it off his form. Jungkook sighs.
“You will catch cold,” he murmurs, “what do you want now?”
Taehyung is fast asleep. But his skin breaks into goosebumps. Jungkook goes over to pick up a shawl.
He drapes it over Taehyung and kneels by the omega's face. Taehyung looks comfortable. Safe.
Jungkook feels his vision blur. He does not dare move and wipe his eyes. If that wakes the omega up. He hates how much he has bottled in him, how much he is holding inside.
He did not expect Taehyung to so easily agree to him going away with their pups. He did not think the omega will be so willing to give up the pups. Just like that, he will choose to stay alone than have their family.
He thought Taehyung would fight for them.
Jungkook bows his head, forehead pressing against the bed. He cries silently.
He has no hope left. He has nothing left. He will leave with the pups if they bother Taehyung but he will go alone. That is why he had to know if the pups can survive without any omega parent.
He gets up, to leave the room and sleep on the carpet outside, by the fireplace. Jungkook lies down on his back. Arm under his head, closing his eyes. Sleep comes after too long, he dreams of a flower.
It is dying. Even before it bloomed.
It is probably midnight when the door of the bedroom opens. Jungkook looks over his head, tilting up to see the omega.
“What?” Jungkook asks, “is everything okay?”
Taehyung hesitates, the shawl wrapped around him, “why are you here?”
Jungkook sits up, “you want me to leave?”
Jungkook looks outside through the window, “okay. Just lock the door from inside-”
“The bed smells of just me,” Taehyung's toes are curled inwards, he is looking at the fireplace instead of him, “the healer said, the babies need to feel both of their parents.”
Jungkook feels how his mouth dry out, “oh...”
Taehyung bites the inside of his cheek, “or,” he frowns at his feet, “were you… do you want them to know only Jiwoo's scent-”
Jungkook gets up, “let's sleep. I am tired.”
He walks inside the bedroom, Taehyung following.
Jungkook lies on the left side and Taehyung whines.
“That is my side,” he frowns, “take the right side.”
Jungkook rolls away, watching the omega come to sit on the bed, slowly lying down with his back to Jungkook. Jungkook turns his back to the omega too, closing his eyes.
“I hardly think the pups can even smell you when I can barely smell you,” Taehyung whispers, grumbles into the pillow, “they are inside me. Under so many layers! I think-”
Jungkook rolls on back to crowd Taehyung, arm going over his stomach to pull him in, “are they happy now?”
Taehyung turns to face Jungkook. He squirms closer until his face is buried against the alpha's chest.
Jungkook holds his breath, staying as still as he can.
“I think they are,” Taehyung hums, “I do not feel nauseous anymore.”
Jungkook feels nauseous instead.
The omega smells of freshly blooming flowers, and it is mixed with his own scent that comes from that mating bite. Also, there is a tangy scent of them both that hints of the pregnancy. Jungkook feels surreal. He puts his arm around Taehyung, pulling him closer.
He buries his face against Taehyung's hair, lips pressing there. Taehyung rubs his nose on Jungkook's scent gland.
“Do not!” Jungkook hisses, nails digging onto Taehyung's back, “do not do that.”
Taehyung pauses, “why? Only she can scent you?”
Jungkook curses, “stop it.”
“No,” Taehyung dares, “I am carrying your pups! I have all the rights to scent you!”
Jungkook grits his teeth, “you realize this is how you got pregnant in the first place, right? You want a repetition of that?”
Taehyung watches him, “I am already pregnant. So, who cares?”
“I am not fucking you!” Jungkook gives him a pointed look.
Taehyung's jaw sets, “yes, that is for her-”
“I never fucked her!” Jungkook curses, “oh, my God! I never touched her!”
Taehyung snorts, “you are still on it?”
“Yes!” Jungkook insists, “oh, god, yes! I am still on it!”
“I simply do not believe you!” Taehyung juts his lower lip out, “that night you had scratches all over your back! You smelt of her!”
“I fucking slept-”
“That is what I said,” Taehyung arches a brow, “you slept! With her!”
“Without her!” Jungkook hisses, “alone! Oh, God!”
“Then explain those marks!” Taehyung glares, “no, go on! Give me a good reason why there were marks on you!”
“I fell asleep, and she was there, on the bed,” Jungkook waves his hand, “when I woke up, I was sleeping on her with her arms around me-” he stops when Taehyung stares.
“I know it sounds stupid,” Jungkook breathes out, trying to think of a way to explain it, “but, nothing happened.”
“Why did you book a room?” Taehyung wonders, “you were just out for a carnival.”
Jungkook looks away, “I...” he makes a face, “I needed some time away from you.”
“You needed some time away from me, so you were in a room with her, on a bed, with you sleeping on top of her and her arms around you. Is that it?” Taehyung asks.
Jungkook gives him a look, “the way you say it, it sounds bad.”
“Because, otherwise, it is not?” Taehyung snorts.
“I will never know if there was something more or not,” Taehyung's voice is thin, “I will never know if you did something more or not. You did not tell me who she is. She lies about her damn sub-gender. I cannot trust her at all. So, I will never know for sure. Will I?”
“Why do you care, anyway?” Jungkook wonders, “you are to let me go with her after all this is over. No?”
Taehyung watches the alpha, the moonlight casting a partial shadow on Jungkook's face, “I guess, you are right. I should not care,” his eyes glisten, “and, yet, I do.”
“I do, because, here I am,” Taehyung grabs Jungkook's hand to press against his stomach, “carrying your pups. While you are out there, in someone else's arms. I do not care what to happen afterwards. When you did that, at that moment, this plan was not in progress. Right?”
“At that moment, I was carrying your pups and you were my mate and yet you slept with her,” Taehyung tries not to let his emotions get the best of him, “you heard the news and acted like an asshole too. I do not care what it is like between us, Jungkook, but these are your pups!”
“Namjoon hyung,” Taehyung looks away, “Jin hyung was saying he was so excited. They are so excited. Every alpha feels like that when their youngs are to be born, but you just planned it,” he wipes his eyes, refusing to let the alpha see his tears, “why would you do this?”
“I get it. I hurt you. You want to hurt me,” Taehyung watches Jungkook's chest, eyes fixed on a mole there, “but, how can you involve the pups in it? You want to take them away from me and I will,” Taehyung cannot bring himself to say it now, “anyway.”
“If you wanted to humiliate me, you could have easily knocked her up and left with her. Which you are doing, but, you just,” Taehyung closes his eyes, “I feel exhausted overthinking all these. That is not good for the pups either. You know?”
Jungkook is quiet, watching him.
“Go on,” Taehyung gives a hollow laugh, “tell me how I hurt you too. Tell me how I called you names. Wished your death. Tell me how I lied about loving you. Go on. I am listening.”
“I am sorry,” Jungkook whispers, looks away when Taehyung blinks up at him, “for the pups.”
“I was furious, humiliated,” Jungkook chews the words out, chest tightening, “I was not thinking. I wanted to hurt you. I told you all that, but,” his palm presses against Taehyung's stomach, “I will never not be happy for them. I will never abandon them. I love them. Truly.”
“And, they will know you,” Jungkook looks at the omega's face, “oh, god, if one of them goes on you, how will I explain that beauty to them without telling them you are their omega parent. How will I ever get away with seeing them not know you? I will never be able to do that.”
“But, I also know you do not want this,” Jungkook looks at the omega's eyes, tears brimming in them, just as he knows his own are tearing up, “you do not want a family with an alpha like me. A weird, lone, orphan wolf,” he gives Taehyung a broken smile, “you said so yourself.”
“I also proved you right by now,” Jungkook looks at Taehyung's stomach, “did everything possible to hurt you beyond repair and I know what you said is true. You will never know if I slept with her or not. That is a doubt that will never settle anything between us. I know.”
“I also know, you will try to tell me that you can work on it. You can try to fall in love and if it was a few days ago, I might have fallen for it, but no.” Jungkook shakes his head, “I heard you, and that is an insecurity I cannot ever shake off. I will always doubt you.”
“But, your pups will know you,” Jungkook nods, “they will be ours. I cannot take them away from you when I know how it feels to not have that person in your life who you came from. I know that pain and I will never subject my pups to it. But,” he looks at Taehyung, “that's all.”
Jungkook caresses Taehyung's stomach, “we can raise them separately. You know? I will not hold you back if you,” he shrugs, “find someone-”
“You bleed every time I touch someone!” Taehyung grits out, “how do you expect me to know that and find another knot to jump onto?!”
“I bleed when you touch another person-”
“After the pups are born, you can continue with those herbs I got you,” Jungkook turns on his back, eyes on the ceiling, “free yourself. Because,” silent tears roll out of his eyes, “I refuse to be your forced love, or worse, a habit.”
“I will not take you starting to get habituated with me and keeping me beside you because it is convenient. I cannot digest the mere thought that we will grow old, and you will always think how you settled because you got pregnant or shit like that. I refuse to be that.”
“I cannot live my entire life with that doubt underlying my thoughts every day that if you were not forced, would you still be here? I will never live easy. I am possessive, Taehyung, I will not survive if you someday tell me you settled because you had to. I cannot do that.”
“I wanted my mate to love me,” Jungkook closes his eyes, helpless, “god, I wanted them to be blindly in love with me. Not because they had to. Not because they learnt to. Not because we had pups together. Because, it was just that. Love. With no strings attached to it.”
“The moment you said, you do not love me but you will pretend and one day you might,” Jungkook curses, “oh, I cannot tell you how that felt, Taehyung. I was upset, I was hurt, I felt so angry. I would take you being honest with me that poking me in my worse insecurity like that.”
He looks at Taehyung, tears oozing out of his eyes, “can you tell me why the most romantic souls never find their soulmates in this world?”
Taehyung burst out crying, shaking his head, “I do not know,” his lips quiver, “I wish I knew. I wish I had a solution. I do not know.”
Jungkook smiles up at the ceiling, “you would think at this age, I will stop being a hopeless romantic, huh?” he laughs, “well, not for me. I still want all that. But, you can do me a favour and never bring up us being anything for convenience. It makes me feel like a joke.”
“Let's raise the pups together,” Jungkook murmurs, “and, be just that. Parents of our pups and that is all. You can break the tie and leave. Find a family. I am,” Jungkook turns his back to Taehyung, “I am used to being the lone, weird wolf by now. Trust me.”
Jungkook sucks in a startled breath when Taehyung's arm comes around him. The omega buries his face against Jungkook's back and squirms closer until they are almost fit together.
Jungkook bites back a sob when he feels the tears soaking up his back, he forces himself to settle.
They do not talk further. As the night grows old, Jungkook turns on his back and Taehyung crawls up to his side. His head resting on Jungkook's chest, listening to the alpha's heartbeat.
Both of them do not acknowledge it, but they both stay awake. Sleep long forgotten.
“Sorry!” Taehyung curses, “I am so sorry!” he holds his hands up, “I did not mean to vomit on your flower, it is just th-”
“Who intentionally vomits?” the alpha's lips twitch, “it is okay.”
Taehyung looks at the outcast, Min Yoongi, “you did not go for the hunt? Everyone went.”
Yoongi smiles, “not really in need for more food.”
“But, hunt is like a way of showing off your power,” Taehyung says, following the alpha to his hut, “our packleader thinks it shows how strong you are!”
Yoongi's lips twist, “I do not expect anything less from him.”
“Huh?” Taehyung accepts the glass of water the alpha offers him.
“Well,” Yoongi starts to tidy up his living room, “killing innocent animals or people to show how strong you are is not something I agree with. I do not believe in bloodshed like that.”
Taehyung stares, “oh.”
“Also, why are you here?” Yoongi asks, “where is your alpha?”
Taehyung rolls his eyes, “tell me about it! I am searching him too! He said he will join the hunt, and I am here for the first time to support him and I do not see him! He is so stupid! Did not even tell me-”
Yoongi's smile stops Taehyung.
“I am rambling, am I not?” Taehyung blushes, “sorry.”
Yoongi waves his hand, “it is okay,” he arches a brow, “you are quite cute when you ramble.”
Taehyung blinks, “oh,” he nods, “thank you.”
They both jump, eyes on the door.
Jimin stands by the doorframe with Jungkook, “there you are!” he storms inside, “why would you come inside the outcast's hut?!” Jimin grabs Taehyung by the elbow, “you do not know him! He can do anything to you, oh, my god!”
Jungkook sighs, “Yoongi hyung is not like that.”
Taehyung glares at Jungkook, “why would you defend him and not me? Why cannot you say I am not like that either?!”
Jungkook blinks at him, “well, Jimin did not say you were jumping him! So-”
“You can defend my honour anyway?” Taehyung crosses his arms over his chest.
“So, I presume, you are his stupid alpha,” Yoongi pats Jungkook's back, “good to meet you again.”
Jungkook lets out a breath, “you have no idea how good you have it as you are single.”
Yoongi's lips twitch, “oh, I know. Omegas are pain.”
Jimin frowns, “hey, we are here!”
Taehyung nods, “we are right here!”
Jungkook winces, “can you come with me?” he holds his hand out for Taehyung, “I need to leave for the hunt and this is not the time you are acting up.”
“I am acting up?!” Taehyung stares, “you did not protest to omegas being a pain!”
He tugs his hand free and stumbles, in the process hitting his shoulder against Jimin. Jimin hits the table and grabs the alpha nearby as he starts to topple over.
The process is quick, but to Taehyung and Jungkook, it all happens in slow motion. Jimin grabs Yoongi's shoulder...
Yoongi's arm going around the omega's waist to hold him, and then they both cry out. Taehyung and Jungkook hold their breaths as they watch the two of them fall on the ground.
Jimin cries out, grasping his hip, and Yoongi winces, holding his arm in a tight grip.
The four pairs of eyes are stuck on Yoongi's pale arm. A blue, half-a-heart blooms. The shape settles in a few seconds but the pain is there on the alpha's face. Taehyung gasps, kneeling to grab Jimin by his hand.
“See your mark!” Jungkook whispers, Taehyung nods in agreement.
“No,” Jimin trembles, eyes wide and on Yoongi's arm, “no, no, no,” he tears away from Taehyung's grasp, “no! He is not my soulmate!” he stands up on his wobbly feet, “no way!”
Jimin grabs the hem of his shirt and pulls it up. The other half of the heart gleams on his skin.
Taehyung goes to run after Jimin, but Jungkook holds his wrist.
“Do not run,” Jungkook looks at the omega, “also, leave him alone for now. He needs to come in terms with this.”
Taehyung looks at Jimin's retreating back with worry, “but, he is not happy! I have to see-”
“I know he is not happy,” Jungkook looks at the running omega too, “take it from me. Right now, seeing you, or anyone who he thinks is happily mated, will cause nothing but pain. Let him be for a few hours.”
Taehyung looks at the alpha and back at Yoongi. Jungkook looks too.
Yoongi is looking at his arm, a deep frown marring his forehead.
“Are you okay?” Jungkook asks, tentative.
Yoongi slowly hides the mark with the sleeve of the shirt and looks at the two of them with a small smile.
“I will be fine,” the alpha nods, “if you will excuse me?”
Taehyung and Jungkook walk out of the alpha's hut. Yoongi closes the door behind them.
Taehyung lets out a breath, “I cannot believe they are mates.”
Jungkook walks by his side, looking ahead of them.
Taehyung watches the alpha, “you are not getting late for the hunt?”
Jungkook nods, “I will go now.”
Taehyung goes to follow, but Jungkook stops him.
“You do not need to go there,” Jungkook waves his hands, “they will bring in raw meat with blood and all. You will feel nauseous again.”
Taehyung watches the alpha, “then shift here.”
Jungkook gives him a look and then turns away. Taehyung watches, transfixed, how the alpha goes down on his hands and knees after discarding his clothes. The transformation makes Taehyung shiver, then the wolf is turning to look up at him with his golden eyes fixed on Taehyung.
Taehyung reaches out, his breath caught in his chest, “I will wait,” his fingers touch the wolf's fur, scratching it behind its ear, “come back soon.”
Jungkook grumbles, nudging Taehyung with his snout. Taehyung rolls his eyes, taking a step back.
“Yes, I will not be there.”
They both look at the hills, the howl heard through the pack. Namjoon is calling for the hunt to begin. Jungkook's ears flicker, picking up on it. He howls back, looking at Taehyung. Taehyung sucks in a breath when the alpha steps closer, nose pressing against his belly.
Taehyung gulps, “I will take care of the pups. You will be back soon,” he pauses, “be back soon.”
The wolf gives him a long look, then its tail wiggle and Taehyung bites back a smile. The alpha then turns on its legs and sprints down the pack. Taehyung sighs.
“Be back soon.”
Taehyung goes to work from there. He hears the howls of the returning wolves. One by one. In the medic camp, he keeps his ears on the howls.
It is almost evening, he finishes his work and walks out of the camp to look at the hills. A frown sits on his brows.
Taehyung thinks if he should go to the boarder to see if Jungkook and his friends returned or not. Or, maybe he should go home and wait.
He starts towards the boarder when he hears the howl. Jungkook is returning. Taehyung meets him halfway, the alpha still in his wolf form.
Taehyung watches the wolf stop on the path when it sees Taehyung. Taehyung holds his breath, letting the other wolves pass with their raw hunt hanging from their mouths. He looks back at Jungkook to pause.
Jungkook does not have any animal with him. Taehyung goes up to him.
He kneels when the wolf tries to bury its face more between its forepaws.
“Okay, what are you hiding?” Taehyung asks, cupping the wolf's face to forcefully make the alpha look at him.
Those golden eyes close and Taehyung looks at the wolf's mouth.
He has some flowers.
Taehyung stops for a second, watching those primroses. He lets the wolf drop it on his lap, step back from him afterwards. Taehyung looks at the flowers and back at the wolf.
The alpha whines, scratching its snout awkwardly.
Taehyung's throat feels dry, “for me?”
The wolf whines under its breath, nosing the flowers and nudging the omega afterwards.
Taehyung takes the flowers in his hands, inhaling the scent with a poorly hidden smile.
“Thank you,” he nods, “I love it.”
The wolf watches him. Taehyung scratches behind its ear.
Then the alpha is grabbing his shirt and tugging. Taehyung frowns, getting up.
“Where?” Taehyung asks, letting the wolf drag him, “wait, where are we going?!”
The wolf looks at the bag Taehyung carries on his side and Taehyung hums.
“Oh, right! Here are your clothes.”
The wolf picks them up with his mouth and disappears behind the camp. Taehyung waits, watches the other wolves walk down the path.
Then he turns to see Jungkook when he hears the footsteps.
“If you want,” the alpha says, voice hoarse from the shifting, “come with me.”
“Where?” Taehyung wonders, confused.
Jungkook shrugs, “just... come with me.”
Taehyung sighs, following the alpha, “if you are trying to kidnap me, I swear!”
Jungkook does not answer, walking ahead of him.
“You want me to climb this hill?!” Taehyung asks, shocked.
They stand at the foot of one of the mountains. Jungkook rolls his eyes and pats his back.
“Hop on,” he bends a little, “I will carry you.”
“Where are you taking me?” Taehyung asks, hopping on, arms around Jungkook's neck, “oh, my lord, you will throw me off the hill!”
Jungkook does not answer. Taehyung rests his chin on Jungkook's shoulder, looking at the alpha and back at the hill.
“Where are we going?” Taehyung whines, “you know, there can be rogues, right?”
“These mountains are under our territory,” Jungkook sighs, “I guard these areas.”
Taehyung does not know what else to say. So he lets the alpha carry him. Jungkook does not stop for a long time. Taehyung nuzzles against the alpha, holding the flowers in his hand.
“Get off now,” Jungkook whispers, “we are here.”
Taehyung slides down his back, looking around.
They are standing on a flat surface on the mountain that is not the top of the hill. The path goes up higher, but it is like a platform that looks over the valley where their pack is.
Taehyung watches, mesmerized, how the flowers bloom around him. How the grass is so soft.
Jungkook goes to sit at the edge of the hill and Taehyung gasps.
“Do not sit there!” Taehyung reaches out, terrified, “you might fall!”
Jungkook smiles, “you sit there,” he points at a place far away from the edge, “you can see the valley from there too.”
Taehyung looks around, “I never knew about this place.”
Jungkook hums, eyes on the pack far away, “no one does. This is my place.”
Taehyung looks at the alpha, “why am I here then?”
Jungkook does not answer right away. He does not turn to face Taehyung, either.
“When the moon rises,” Jungkook points at the sky, “it reflects on the waterfall, down the river and the moonbeam shines over these flowers. It looks pretty,” Jungkook's eyes are still downcast, “maybe the only sight prettier than you.”
Taehyung's throat bobs, “oh.”
Taehyung feels the goosebumps, his fingers grasping the grass in his clutch. The alpha lets out a deep breath, lying down on his back.
“Lie down,” Jungkook pats his side, “we can go back after the moon rises.”
Taehyung hesitates, then he lies down on Jungkook's stomach.
Jungkook goes stiff underneath him, and Taehyung hurries to explain himself.
“I don't like lying without a pillow,” he rambles, “it feels like all the blood is rushing to my head, and it hurts-”
“Okay,” Jungkook nods, “it is okay.”
Taehyung lies, then, on his back.
“You come here often?” Taehyung asks, eyes on the open sky, his nose filling in on the sweet scent of the flowers.
“Yes,” Jungkook hums, “came here after my parents died,” he chuckles, “for a different reason.”
Taehyung flinches, looking at the alpha, “oh!”
“Could not,” Jungkook looks at the sky too, “stood at the edge and looked at the moon. I simply could not. It felt like the moon was watching and I could not do it,” Jungkook's hand comes to rest on Taehyung's hair, combing through it, “I am a coward, you know?”
Taehyung's eyes flutter, feeling the alpha's nails scratch against his scalp. The alpha's voice rumbles underneath him. He feels the quiet of the hills otherwise. Everything so silent, so peaceful.
“Then, I started coming here to see the moon. It was like a stupid addiction.”
“I told the moon about you.”
Taehyung chokes on thin air, eyes snapping to the alpha whose eyes are stuck on the sky.
Jungkook has a small smile on his lips, “told her how cruel she was to write you for me but not fully. Like this place. My escape. But, never my home.”
“I guess, that hurts the most, no?” Jungkook mushes, “an escape that you crave. That is so beautiful, so charming, so alluring. You would die for it but it is not for you. Not for you to have forever. Maybe that is what makes it special but oh, so painful when we have to leave.”
Taehyung watches the alpha.
“You were like the moon to me,” Jungkook smiles, “too far, yet I could see you. Too beautiful, captivating. Making me climb mountains to come and just sit. Just to bask in the glory for a few hours before I go back to my mundane life.”
“Would you call me a creep if I say, I would take the long way around your parents' hut every day, just so I can see you?” Jungkook winces, “god, it sounds so weird. I know. But, that was all I could have of you, and I could not help myself.”
“I would watch you with Boemseok and think, how he is the earth you orbit around. Your grounding force. And, here I was, just another star in this vast sky, who admires you. Who,” Jungkook stops to collect his thought, “burns for you, longs for you, and you will never notice.”
Taehyung turns away, blinking back the moisture from his eyes that he does not understand. He breathes out, trying to calm his racing heart.
He should be used to this. Boemseok was poetic. He would narrate verses or say things too romantic for Taehyung.
But, Jungkook is so raw.
Jungkook is so overbearing and intense. Taehyung does not understand why he feels so overwhelmed. He was subjected to courting, sweet words, gifts, everything. But, Jungkook's words pierce through him and those wounds bleed. They hurt. The alpha hurts him. Without even trying.
Taehyung sits up, facing away from the alpha, “Jungkook...”
Jungkook sighs, “I did not mean to ramble. I am sorry.”
Taehyung looks at the vast emptiness ahead of him. The valley down there, the horizon right in front of his eyes. The moon is slowly rising, its light soft.
Jungkook sits up too, right behind Taehyung. Taehyung watches the moon, it is full. Taehyung holds his breath when the soft glow of the moon reflects on the waterfall, turning it milky white. It glistens, reflecting the light down on the river and the valley.
The water droplets of the waterfall look like shredded glass. They shine, the light reflecting on Taehyung's face. The omega watches his surrounding brighten up. The flowers soak up the moonlight, swaying with the soft breeze. He inhales deeply.
“The moon is beautiful tonight.”
Taehyung agrees, he nods, “yes, the moon is really beautiful tonight.”
When he looks at his side, Jungkook is looking at him. Those eyes gleaming, the light reflecting. Those irises swim in unshaded tears and Taehyung is mesmerized.
Jungkook looks beautiful under the moonlight.
Jungkook gives him a hollow and silent laugh, “I think I was wrong.”
Taehyung watches him, heartbeat too loud in his ears, “about what?”
Jungkook reaches to caress the side of Taehyung's face, “nothing is prettier than you,” he breathes out, “maybe, it is simply not possible.”
“And, like a fool, I know it,” Jungkook does not try to stop when a teardrop topples over the edge of his eye, “but, you are so far out of my reach and I wish I did not know it. I wish I did not realize you are so-”
Taehyung slots their lips together, pulling the alpha closer.
Taehyung gasps when Jungkook kisses him harder, pulling him up against himself. The omega goes willingly, their lips still locked together.
Taehyung knows he is crying, he feels Jungkook's tears too. Their kiss taste like their tears and they both cannot stop. Kissing. Crying.
“I know how you feel,” Jungkook whispers, breaks down, “but, I am so in love with you,” he pulls away, hand still cupping Taehyung's face, “my moon,” his thumb presses against Taehyung's cheekbone, “but, look at my bad luck. You are not mine. Never mine. Never will be.”
Taehyung chases those lips when Jungkook pulls away, looking back at the moon. Taehyung watches the alpha. He notices the struggle the alpha physically goes through to calm himself. Then Jungkook is looking back at him.
“I did not bring you here to emotionally blackmail you.”
“I am not saying these to make you fall in love with me, or make you feel guilty or anything,” Jungkook breathes out, “I am doing this, because, I needed to get a closure.”
The alpha looks down at the pack, Taehyung's eyes fixed on him.
“I need to leave all this behind me.”
“I feel like I keep suppressing so much, that I burst out in the wrong places, you know?” Jungkook looks at his hands, clenching them, “I had to let you know how I feel before I can put this all behind me.”
Taehyung looks away from the alpha, feeling cold all of a sudden.
Jungkook notices, he pulls Taehyung beside him, “do you want to go back now?”
Taehyung squirms closer to the alpha, “no, not yet. I feel,” he leans his head on Jungkook's shoulder, “it feels good here. Can we stay for a bit more?”
Jungkook hums, “as long as you want.”
Taehyung does not reply. They lie down again, Jungkook on his back and Taehyung by his side. The alpha's arm pillowing his head. Taehyung is not sure who falls asleep first, but when he opens his eyes the next time, it is already dawn. The sun barely visible.
Taehyung watches the bright orange ball of warmth fading the dark sky to a soft yellow. The morning breeze comes with the birds chirping around them, slowly waking up. Taehyung pulls his legs up to his chest, hugging himself. He watches the sunrise while Jungkook sleeps.
Taehyung takes a look around himself. He is not sure if he will ever be back here with Jungkook or, he looks at the alpha, or the alpha will be back some day with another omega by his side. But, Taehyung hopes, their morning comes brighter. Warmer. A lot more hopeful.
They build up a routine around each other. Taehyung goes to the medical camp, Jungkook cooks and leaves the hut afterwards. Taehyung comes back, cleans the dishes and keeps the hut tidy. Jungkook takes their clothes to wash. They both goes to bed together.
Taehyung does not get to rest before Jimin is getting married. He follows the omega around, trying to calm him when he frets and Jungkook tells him how Yoongi does not like the idea either but at least, the alpha does not look as frantic as Jimin does.
“You look tired. Do you need help with something?”
Taehyung looks over to see Jongdae smiling at him. The alpha is unmated, friendly and always tries to help Taehyung in need.
“No, thank you,” Taehyung sighs, “I am trying to make this potion by myself.”
Jongdae hums, “you got the first ingredient wrong, love,” he touches the side of Taehyung's waist and holds him there to walk around him, “here. See? Use this.”
Taehyung watches, mesmerized, how Jongdae makes the potion and the scent is just right, “god, you are so good!”
Jongdae shrugs, blush high on his cheeks, “I know. I can teach you, if you want?”
Taehyung looks at the alpha, pouting, “I just do not get the time. You know?” he points at his list of work, “after I finish all this, it is already evening.”
“I can help afterwards?”
“Really?” Taehyung cannot believe his own ears, “you would? Oh, thank you!”
Jongdae waves him off, “you can come over to my hut or I can visit yours?”
Taehyung nods, “of course! Jungkook will be out for his night duty. So, I will not disturb him.”
Jongdae watches him.
“You do not call him your 'alpha,' for some reason,” Jongdae gives him an awkward smile, “I noticed.”
Taehyung's smile dims, his eyes going back to the ruined potion on his desk, “well,” he shrugs, “I do not like to call him that.”
Jongdae looks at him, eyes lingering, “oh?”
Taehyung waves his hand, “it is nothing serious.”
Jongdae smiles too, friendly and understanding, “of course. I understand. It is hard to call anyone or see anyone as an 'alpha,' after Boemseok hyung. I get it, you know?”
Taehyung stills, gripping the edge of the table.
“Hey,” Jongdae squeezes Taehyung's shoulder, “I get it, you know?” he looks down at the mixture in his pot, “also, I cannot imagine how much you have to endure Jungkook, knowing how he actively went out of his way to stop every alpha from marrying you.”
Taehyung frowns, “what?”
Jongdae goes pale, his lips bitten between his teeth and eyes wide.
“Do not tell him! Oh, God! I did not mean for it to slip! He already-”
Taehyung reaches out, holding Jongdae's hand in his, “hey, hey! Calm down. What did you mean there?”
Jongdae looks terrified, “Well, after Boemseok hyung died,” he looks away, “well, after he was killed,” the alpha's voice wavers, “a few of us alphas offered to marry you. Your parents know about it. But, then Jungkook got to know about it, and I was personally visited by him.”
Jongdae shivers, “let's just say, he made it clear to us that we stop courting you. Otherwise, we were to follow Boemseok hyung.”
Taehyung feels the way his heart falls into his stomach, lurching up to his throat next, “what do you mean he was killed?”
Jongdae gives him a look.
“Do you really believe all of that coincidents happened just like that, on the same night, Taehyung?” Jongdae sighs, “Boemseok hyung was getting too powerful. The entire pack loved him. Probably more than the packleader himself. The packleader wanted him gone. Jungkook helped.”
“On that day, Jungkook served Boemseok hyung breakfast in the camp,” Jongdae whispers, “afterwards hyung told me he was not feeling well. He went to the hunt because, right before it started, Jungkook backed away by saying he had fever. Hyung had to take his place then.”
“He was feeling weak and feverish himself, but unlike Jungkook, he never backed away from his duty. So, he went. The packleader also forced him to lead the troop,” Jongdae sits down on the chair, as if unable to hold himself up anymore, “then, you know what happened.”
“Also, I went looking, and Boemseok hyung's plate had some vegetables he was allergic to,” Jongdae murmurs, “his allergy acted up, and he could not breathe during the fight. He was struggling and then,” Jongdae breaks down, “you also know how quickly the packleader acted then.”
“The body was cremated in a few hours, and you were married off in two days. To just cover it all up and patch it all up because what else justifies the hurry? Also, none of us knew about you sleeping with hyung. No one in the pack knew. Who spread the rumour? Did you wonder?”
Taehyung sits down too, his head throbbing. He does not want to hear further. He does not want to go further.
“Jungkook knew,” Jongdae wipes his eyes, “one day Boemseok hyung and him got into a huge fight in the middle of the camp. Jungkook shouted something about you.”
“Wh-what did he say?” Taehyung cannot recognize his own voice.
Jongdae shrugs, “alphas would gossip about the omegas who have crush on us or who would sleep with us,” he winces, “not a good habit, I never did it, but it is a thing in the camp. Hyung was talking about someone...”
“Then Jungkook walked in and Boemseok hyung teased him, just a word or two, how Jungkook never talks about anyone. If his knot is alright or not,” Jongdae waves his hand, “it was all fun and joke, but Jungkook took it personally. Called hyung a cheater, told him to fuck off.”
“Hyung got upset, a fight broke,” Jongdae rubs his temple, “Jungkook grabbed hyung by the collars to shout at his face that he knew about hyung. Too much. About his soulmate, too. So, hyung stopped the fight. I think he was talking about you. Because, none of us knew. No?”
“So,” Jongdae sighs, “I steer clear of his way. He is very stubborn and possessive, you know?” the alpha rubs his hands together, “he was always so obsessed with you. Any mention of your name from us would get us a glare or some harsh words. He is so... weird.”
“If you are so scared of him, then why are you asking Taehyung to come to your hut? Do you not think Jungkook will break your bones if he knows? If he is that possessive of a freak as you are painting him to be?”
They both jump, looking over at the door to see the alpha.
“Hyung?” Taehyung gets up.
Yoongi smiles at him, walking in, “hello,” he comes to stand beside Taehyung, looking at Jongdae, “was just dropping by to take some rut suppressants. Did not have the heart to stop this alpha in his heartfelt word-vomit.”
“What do you mean word-vomit?!” Jongdae gets up, “I am just sharing my pain with a friend!”
“A friend you clearly wanted to marry,” Yoongi's eyes do not waver from Jongdae, “also, the words you just spoke, about the allergy and everything. It is a huge lie. All of it.”
“How do you know?” Jongdae gapes, “I went and found the traces-”
“The alpha was fine,” Yoongi chuckles, “a little rusty and a lot stupid in his skills.”
“How dare you call him stupid?!” Jongdae thunders, “what do you know-”
“I know because I killed him,” Yoongi silences him.
Taehyung stumbles, “it… it was you?”
Yoongi nods, looking at Taehyung, “I owe you an apology for him being your mate, but it was a fight, and I was fighting fairly. He was under no influence, and he was perfectly fine. I came here seeking him, to be honest.”
“Boemseok was the reason I became a rogue, the packleader's puppet. Not Jungkook,” Yoongi watches the alpha in front of him.
“Why are you suddenly accepting this?!” Jongdae wonders.
Yoongi smirks, “because, otherwise, you are taking away my credit, sir. Do you not see?”
“I fought with his entire troop, alone. I won. Then you are coming out of the blue and calling it an unfair fight?” Yoongi pouts, “I cannot take that, now, can I? Because, I remember that asshole being a manipulative alpha and calling me out just to talk. He tried to lure me in.”
“We sat down to talk, and he suddenly attacked me,” Yoongi's lips curl in disgust, “so I had to fight to save myself. There was nothing else. It was a fair fight. Also, the thing you said about alphas sitting down to talk about omegas, it is called boasting. A disgusting habit.”
Yoongi looks at Taehyung, “I know, right now you hate me. But, what he said, about Boemseok talking about omegas, he was boasting about the omegas he slept with. That is barely any good talk, Taehyung. If Jungkook did not want to join, it does not make him a bad person.”
“Who are you again?! You were probably some weak alpha in your pack, what do you know about camps-”
Yoongi laughs, “if you call me weak, what is your Boemseok then? He died in this weak alpha's hands. Do not try to make someone a bad person because they got who you could not.”
Yoongi looks at Taehyung, “it is very easy to believe others when they speak what you probably want to hear. I know,” the alpha sighs, “but, try to understand. Why would Jungkook do this? Give me a fair reason.”
Taehyung has a reason. He is Jungkook's one-sided mate.
Yoongi probably gets his expression. The alpha watches him.
“Taehyung, when you are twenty-six, would you bed a seventeen-year-old omega?”
Taehyung grips his hands together, opening his mouth.
“I want yes, or no, Taehyung,” Yoongi murmurs, “give me, yes or no.”
“No,” Taehyung breathes out, “no, I will not.”
Yoongi nods, “when you are in power, when you know if something happens, no one will blame you but the one you claim to love because they are the omega, will you still sleep with them for the sake of it?”
Taehyung gulps, “no.”
“You are Jungkook's friend!” Jongdae grits his teeth, “you are taking his side.”
Yoongi smiles, “I am his hyung. I am both of their hyung. I just know because Jungkook has no one here he can open up to and neither do I. We talk and so, I know. I know how Boemseok is.”
Yoongi looks at Taehyung, voice devastatingly gentle, “if we do not take rut partner, nothing hurts, Taehyung,” he nods when Taehyung looks up at him, eyes tearful, Yoongi gives him a rueful smile, “if you knew this, and still took a partner after saying it hurts, are you lying?”
Yoongi steps in front of Jongdae, hiding Taehyung from his view. Taehyung appreciates the privacy.
“Get out of here,” Yoongi tells Jongdae, “now I am the packleader's son-in-law. Listen to my words and obey. Get out.”
The alpha scurries away. Taehyung lets out a soft whimper.
Yoongi sits Taehyung down, kneels in front of him, “tell me, Tae, are you lying then?”
Taehyung grips Yoongi's hands in his, tears rolling out of his eyes, “I am lying,” he breathes out, “I am lying,” he breaks down, “he was lying. He was lying to me. He was lying.”
Yoongi gathers Taehyung in his arms, tightly holding him as the omega breaks into loud sobs.
“He lied to me!” Taehyung buries his face against Yoongi's neck, “he lied to me.”
“And, you knew this for quite some time now,” Yoongi rubs his back, “now, it is time you accept it.”
Yoongi presses his lips against Taehyung's temple, “you do not need to force yourself to love Jungkook. But, you need to see what Boemseok was and cut him loose. You owe it to yourself. You owe it to the love you gave him that he clearly did not deserve. See him as he was.”
“You need to accept that somewhere, deep down, you felt pressured to sleep with him because he was saying all that, and you wanted to prove you love him, and he simply manipulated you, Taehyung. I get it from hearing it. You lived it. You know it. You got to know it. Right?”
Yoongi wipes Taehyung's eyes, “accepting that he manipulated you, does not make you weak. Okay? It does not make you a fool. No one would laugh at you for trying to provide for your alpha. No one would point a finger at you for trusting your alpha. He is wrong. You are not.”
For a long time, Taehyung just sits there, hugging himself. He buries his face in his knees and cries silently. Yoongi sits beside him. Not even once trying to hold him or anything. Just a silent present. Which Taehyung is grateful for.
“Do you think he loved me?”
Yoongi looks at the omega when he hears that question. He observes those vulnerable eyes. He knows, whatever he says, will make or break the omega.
“I think he did,” Yoongi nods, “I think, he did not know better.”
Taehyung frowns, “what do you mean?”
Yoongi hums, “I think, you know, the story of the frog who grew up in a well? He refused to believe the knowledge the frog from the ocean brought him,” Yoongi nods, “I think, Boemseok was the frog from the well. He grew up in a household where his beliefs were right. You know?”
“As typical alphas,” Yoongi looks outside, eyes fixed far away on those hills, “he thought his desires, his wishes were always justified. I think, he loved you, but that does not mean, his love was the right kind.”
Taehyung nods, absorbing those words, “I loved him. Really.”
Yoongi nods, “I know that too.”
“What makes the love right kind?” Taehyung wipes his eyes, “when I told him, I was willing to sleep with him, he was gentle with me. He did not,” he stops, embarrassed, “he did not knot me. Because, he was worried that I will get pregnant.”
Yoongi nods, “if I know him, from what I heard, it was because he did not want to get in trouble himself.”
Taehyung looks at his hands, “I feel stupid.”
“No, do not,” Yoongi takes Taehyung's hand in his then, patting it, “you loved him. That is not your stupidity.”
“He took advantage of it, that is his stupidity,” Yoongi thinks for a few minutes before looking at Taehyung, “you have your entire life ahead of you, Taehyung. The right kind of love will find you.”
Taehyung arches a brow, “the frog from the ocean?”
Yoongi smiles, “yes.”
“Even if it does not,” Yoongi gets up, “you do need to move on from the person who did not deserve such a strong hold on you.”
Taehyung watches the alpha leave, silently closing the door behind himself. Taehyung stays there long after. Leaving the camp hours later.
For the first time since the alpha's death, Taehyung goes to the cemetery. He walks up to the grave where Boemseok lies and stands by the foot of it. His eyes on the grave and his arms around himself.
Taehyung slowly sinks to his knees, reaching to touch the grave.
“I now know what you did was wrong,” Taehyung whispers, “and, I can now accept it. It is not my fault that I loved you. But, you did not deserve it. At all,” he does not cry, his words measured, “I finally came here to bid you goodbye.”
He gets up and turns away from the grave.
When Taehyung gets home, Jungkook is already there. The alpha is making dinner. Taehyung goes to sit by the chair, his eyes moving with Jungkook.
“When we first had sex,” Taehyung mumbles, “you… you had a plan,” he watches the alpha freeze, “you just wanted to use me.”
Jungkook sits on the floor, the clay oven burning the woods. He nods, eyes on Taehyung.
“I did,” Jungkook agrees, “I wanted for you to get pregnant. For my plan to work.”
“Then, why did you leave?” Taehyung whispers, “that night...? You left.”
tw- [some NSFW talks]
Jungkook looks at him, shrugs, “could not. I could not go through with it. I could not do it when you looked-”
“You just sucked me off and left,” Taehyung snorts, “the next time, I just... god, you left me after fingering me.”
Jungkook looks away, “yes.”
“I just could not go through with it when there was a constantly nagging thought in my mind that you did not want it,” Jungkook turns to the oven, “I was going to back out.”
“Until I almost threw myself at you?” Taehyung hugs himself, “that night? By the river?”
“All thoughts practically left my mind that night,” Jungkook shrugs, “I mean, you were right there. Asking me, begging me to end this game-”
Taehyung feels his face heat up, he hides it in his palms with a groan, “do not remind me of what I said. God!”
Jungkook snorts, “right.”
“I wanted it,” Taehyung murmurs, “that night, I wanted it. I think,” he shrugs, looking at his hands, “I wanted it for quite a long time. But, yes.”
Jungkook watches Taehyung over his shoulder, “why are we discussing this now?”
Taehyung shrugs, “I wanted to clear it out.”
Jungkook nods, looking back at their dinner, “okay.”
Taehyung rubs his hands over his face, “I talked to Yoongi hyung today. About Boemseok and you,” he ignores how Jungkook turns to look at him again, “he was telling me a lot of things.”
“As in?” Jungkook arches a brow.
Taehyung tells Jungkook everything and Jungkook nods.
“If Yoongi hyung did not walk in, were you going to believe that Jongdae?” Jungkook asks.
Taehyung nods, no hesitation, “yes,” he voices out, “I was going to believe him. He made it sound pretty believable.”
Jungkook is quiet for a few seconds, then he turns back to the oven. Taehyung sinks to his knees behind the alpha, reaching out to place his hand on Jungkook's shoulder.
“I am sorry,” Taehyung whispers, voice hoarse, “for not trusting yo-”
“I did not give you enough reason to.”
Taehyung hugs Jungkook from behind, forehead pressing against Jungkook's back. He sniffles, tears silently rolling out of his eyes.
“I want to move ahead of all this,” Taehyung whispers, lips pressing against Jungkook's nape, “can we just close the door now? On all this?”
“Can we just lock the door on our past and give our future a chance?” Taehyung whimpers, “from tonight? Can we just move ahead? I cannot do this anymore. I cannot keep looking back. I cannot mull over all this over and over again in my head. I want to move on. Please?”
“I know you said you would hate it if I fall in love with you out of habit.” Taehyung nods, “I know, you said you would not want anything to do with me if I just love you because you are convenient, but would you believe me,” he forces Jungkook to look at him, “if I said…”
“When you took me to that cliff and said, you will take someone else there some day, I really wanted to rip that omega apart? That faceless person?” Taehyung cries, “would you believe me if I said, I do not want to share you. With that omega of yours. Or, anyone else?”
“I never had a problem sharing Boemseok with anyone, but, the thought of you with someone else kills me. It makes me sick. I do not want that. I do not want anyone else near you.”
Jungkook watches him, “what if this is just your omega wanting the pups' alpha father around?”
“I cannot assure you of that,” Taehyung nods, agreeing, “but, I had to let you know how I feel. I had to tell you. Because, I kept thinking and today, after talking to Yoongi hyung, I got the push I needed. I had to let you know how I feel.”
Taehyung gets up to leave.
Taehyung goes to the bedroom. He changes monotonously before lying down on the bed.
Jungkook comes inside to call him out for dinner. They eat in silence, both of their minds reeling with too many thoughts.
Taehyung takes a bath, getting ready for bed. Jungkook has night duty.
As Taehyung changes the bedsheet for the night, Jungkook comes to stand beside him.
“Thank you for being honest with me,” Jungkook nods, voice awkward, “I think... I think I need to think all this first. I want you to sleep on it. If you feel the same tomorrow, we can talk.”
“You just drained yourself emotionally tonight,” Jungkook waves his hands, “with all the talks with Yoongi hyung. Right now, maybe, you are feeling vulnerable, and I am the closest to you according to your omega. Sleep on it. We can talk tomorrow.”
The alpha leaves.
“He is clearly trying to use you as a rebound,” Jiwoo snorts, eyes on the boarder, “just think, Jungkookie. He did not feel the same this morning. But, now he feels the same? He told you himself, he was going to trust that Jongdae. Then he suddenly wanted you?”
“He knows you are the best option,” Jiwoo leans on her hand, “he is already pregnant with your pups. It is easy to loop you in. That way, he does not need to find someone else. He can leech off of you. You know? Otherwise, give me a good reason for his sudden mood change.”
“He sees you as nothing but a weirdo, as he clearly stated to Jimin,” Jiwoo pats Jungkook's back, “now, you are an adult, Jungkookie. Give it your thoughts. He is not doing anything but trying to manipulate you because he knows you have feelings for him. He is using you.”
Jungkook watches Hoseok come in to wave at Jiwoo.
“The camp wants you,” Hoseok points, “a few healers need help with some labours.”
Jiwoo gets up, smiling at the beta, “going,” he looks at Jungkook, “think this through, Jungkookie. Don't fall for it.”
Jungkook watches Hoseok, “if an omega tells an alpha, they are starting to feel something for the alpha, mind you, that omega is pregnant with the said alpha's pups and always hated the alpha, would you believe them?”
Hoseok blinks, “woah, that is a tough puzzle right there.”
Jungkook shrugs, “well,” he looks down at his hand, “if the omega did feel something, the alpha would know. It would make something physically change on the alpha.”
Hoseok watches him, eyes unnerving, “feelings change, Jungkook. I think the omega is brave to accept it.”
Hoseok comes to sit beside Jungkook, “if that omega insisted that they hated the alpha, but now is saying they are starting to feel something, then maybe they are honest. Because, otherwise, they could have said they already love the alpha.”
“And, as far as that physical change goes,” Hoseok makes a face, “it is like the boiling point. You know? When the water is boiling, then that physical change might occur? Right now, the water is starting to heat up. The alpha should give it a thought.”
Jungkook keeps thinking throughout the night. When the sun rises over the horizon, Jungkook returns home. On his way, he buys some fresh vegetables to make the omega some broth before Taehyung leaves for his work.
When he gets back, Taehyung is still asleep. Jungkook sighs.
He opens the bedroom door to see Taehyung fast asleep. Jungkook goes to pull the curtains back and turns to call Taehyung.
He freezes when he notices the omega's nest. Since that fire in the old hut, Taehyung has not made a nest. He would just sleep in front of the fireplace.
Jungkook watches the newly made nest. His eyes skim over the familiar clothes scattered around, a few neatly wrapped around the pillow that Taehyung holds to his chest, nose buried in them. They all belong to Jungkook.
The omega wears the shirt Jungkook discarded last night.
Jungkook walks up beside the bed, reaching out to hold Taehyung's hand in his.
“Hey,” Jungkook whispers, “wake up. It's morning.”
Taehyung whines, squirming. He buries his face more into the pillow, rubbing his nose there.
Jungkook feels breathless, “Taehyung. Wake up.”
Taehyung blinks, bleary eyes on him, “you are home.”
Jungkook nods, “I am. Wake up.”
Taehyung blinks, “a few more minutes. I could not sleep last night. Took me so long to make the nest.”
Jungkook does not dare to take another look at the nest, “oh.”
Taehyung blinks, “oh?”
“Do you not like it?” Taehyung murmurs, suddenly a lot more awake, “do you... I should have asked for your permission. I was feeling so restless, and it felt too cold. So, I am sorry-”
“Your nest is very beautiful, Tae,” Jungkook murmurs, nodding, “like you.”
“You mean it?” Taehyung breathes out.
Jungkook nods, “I do,” he looks at Taehyung, clad in his shirt, the loose pajama is the only thing the omega kept that is his, “did you mean it?” he asks, “last night?”
Taehyung's large eyes hold Jungkook captive as the omega nods, “yes.”
Jungkook nods, “okay.”
Taehyung eyes him, uncertain, “you are not going to ask me any more questions or anything?”
Jungkook shakes his head, “no,” he straightens up, “I am tired of questioning everything. If you break my heart again, I will know I gave myself a fair chance.”
“Just as you, I want to close the door on my past too,” Jungkook smiles, “and, that flower?” he shrugs, “if it never blooms,” he cups Taehyung's face, “I think I will be fine. I just realized, right now,” he feels his eyes burn, “I will trust my mate and not the moongoddess.”
“She cursed me even before I was born,” Jungkook wipes his eyes, “you are blessing me with my pups. An assurance of love. I can live with it. I don't need a damn flower.”
Taehyung breaks into a sob, tugging the alpha down on the bed to straddle him. His arms around Jungkook.
“I will not take the wristband off to even look at my wrist,” Jungkook holds Taehyung to himself, “you don't need to feel pressured in any way. I do not care, just tell me,” he begs, “tell me, you really want me.”
They both know love is too soon. They can work with 'want.'
“I do,” Taehyung breathes out against the alpha's neck, nodding, “I really want you.”
Jungkook bites down on his lips to not let out the sob that tears through him. He holds Taehyung to himself.
“That is enough for now,” Jungkook whispers, “I can live with that.”
As Taehyung kisses Jungkook, the alpha kissing him back with just as much urgency, they both ignore the way Taehyung's mating bite burns. Jungkook's wrist throbs for a few seconds.
“I want you,” Taehyung pulls Jungkook to himself, “please.”
Unbeknown to them, a petal blooms.
When Yoongi leaves the pack, Taehyung is confused, sad, and it just simply makes no sense to him.
“They looked fine together!” Taehyung tells Jungkook, sitting on the counter top while Jungkook cooks on the floor, “they always looked so good together.”
Jungkook gets up, holding a bowl out for Taehyung to take. Taehyung takes it, eating from it mindlessly.
“I am not hungry,” Taehyung pushes the bowl to Jungkook after taking two bites, “I need to go to the packhouse and see how chim is doing. He didn't look good to me last nig-”
Jungkook stands between his legs, hands resting on Taehyung's knees.
“Hey,” the alpha squeezes his knees, “you are worrying me with all the shouting and worry you are doing,” he leans in to press a kiss against Taehyung's lips, “how about you rest today?”
Taehyung pouts, looking away, “I get bored alone here,” he frowns at the side, “the hut is too big and there is no one I can talk to. I feel lonely.”
Jungkook hums, “what if I ask Jin hyung to come and give you company?”
“He is with chim,” Taehyung shakes his head, “he can't.”
Jungkook thinks, “well, then I can ask Hobi hyung-”
Taehyung sighs, “I don't think he is coming here to rest with me when he has a search party to lead.”
Jungkook sighs, “then, what, Taehyung? You need some rest. You are pregnant. You cannot put yourself at risk like this.”
Taehyung draws his shoulders up, lips jutting out, “well, I hate being alone. Nowadays, it is making me feel even more miserable.”
Jungkook hums, “what if I call someone-”
Taehyung curses out loud, “you stupid alpha, how many people you will offer before you offer to stay?!”
The silence after the shout is eerie. Taehyung knows his face is heating up. He looks anywhere but at the alpha.
Jungkook's lips twitch, his eyes mirthful. He leans in to nuzzle against Taehyung's neck.
“I will offer the entire pack just to hear you say you want me here.”
Taehyung holds back a moan when Jungkook's lips trail soft kisses down his throat.
“Maybe stop making my life so hard,” Taehyung whispers, “I am carrying your pups, sir.”
There is still a hesitation in him. He still cannot bring himself to call Jungkook alpha.
Just because the last person he called 'alpha,' turned out like that. Taehyung lets Jungkook pull him in a kiss and wonders if Jungkook noticed it. If Jungkook thinks it's odd.
“What is it?” Jungkook murmurs against his lips, “your gears are running in your head. What is it?”
“Do you mind that I don't call you alpha?” Taehyung whispers, looking down at his hands, “it's not because I don't want to. It's becau-”
“I don't care, really,” Jungkook sighs, a pleasant smile on his lips, “you don't need to address me with my rank. If I am honest, it's weird.”
“Call me whatever you prefer,” Jungkook buries his face against Taehyung's neck, inhaling the omega's intoxicating scent, “your stupid alpha. An idiot. Whatever. I don't mind you calling me by my name, either.”
“That's frowned upon,” Taehyung breathes out, “calling you by name.”
Jungkook shrugs, careless, “just tell me who is frowning at whatever you call me. I will break their face, so they never get to move a muscle of their face. Forget frowning.”
Taehyung swats Jungkook, ignoring his laugh, “Jungkook! Stop going around violating people!”
Jungkook pulls back, eyes tender and on Taehyung's face, “for you,” the alpha breathes out, “for you, my moon, I would.”
Taehyung is not the violent type. He hates violence. But, those words send a shiver down his spine, something fluttering in his chest. He feels warm.
Taehyung tries to make light of the heavy silence that surrounds them. He snorts, rolling his eyes.
“Flattery won't get you anything, sir,” he hears how his voice is winded, “don't try that on me. I have heard these lines so many times.”
None of them left him feeling so warm.
Jungkook's scent is possessive, heavy around Taehyung. The alpha crowds him, face inches from Taehyung's.
“But,” Jungkook breathes out against Taehyung's ear, “you are not carrying their pups. Are you? I think it worked.”
Taehyung bites back a whine when the alpha kisses him.
His entire body tenses up when the alpha's hand comes to rest on his stomach. He is sporting a small bump by now. He can hide it under baggy clothes, but it is there. Jungkook's hand presses against it, the alpha's kiss turning deep.
“Carrying my pups for me,” Jungkook hums...
“Being bratty only to me,” Jungkook's nails dig in Taehyung's skin, “always being so bratty to me, I think it worked.”
Taehyung's arms wrap around Jungkook, legs hooking behind the alpha's narrow waist.
“You deserve to be on your toes always,” Taehyung shrugs, “you deserve it.”
“I deserve whatever you do to me,” Jungkook carries Taehyung to the makeshift nest near the fireplace, sitting down with Taehyung in his lap, “my moon can be whatever he wants to be with me. Demand whatever he wants from me. I will get it for him. I swear.”
Taehyung never did that.
Demanding anything from anyone. He never really got to demand anything from Boemseok because he always thought the alpha would call him a kid or laugh it off. With others, he was just too prideful to demand anything.
It is very new and foreign to him.
He buries his face against Jungkook's neck and stays there. Jungkook does not rush him. The alpha slowly starts to feed him instead.
When the bowl is almost empty, Taehyung gathers all the courage to say it.
“Spend the day with me?” he stares resolutely at the bowl, “please?”
Jungkook's chest expands as if the alpha sucks in a breath, and then those lips press over Taehyung's hair. Nose buried in Taehyung's curls.
A simple word and Taehyung feels like he is crumbling. He clings to Jungkook, daring himself to look up to match those eyes.
“You will?” Taehyung cannot let himself sound so hopeful, but he feels it, and it shows.
Jungkook gives him a tender smile, “I told you,” he wipes Taehyung's mouth, “for you, my moon, I will.”
Taehyung's lips stretch on a smile, tentative, hesitant but so radiant, “thank you.”
“What are we doing today?” Jungkook asks after they both eat their breakfast and sit in the nest by the fireplace, “anything you want to do specifically?”
Taehyung shrugs, “I want to knit,” he does not match Jungkook's eyes, “something for the pups.”
Jungkook feels breathless.
“Can I help?” he asks, sitting behind Taehyung while Taehyung sits on his lap, “teach me how to knit.”
Taehyung swats Jungkook's roaming hands, “stop messing up the wools!” he glares over his shoulders at the alpha, “just sit and watch me. You might learn something then.”
As time goes by, Jungkook finds himself with the needles and eyes fixed on Taehyung's moving hands.
“Okay, slow down,” Jungkook nudges Taehyung, chin resting on Taehyung's shoulder, “this loop got messy!”
Taehyung sighs, “I corrected it for the fourth time for you, idiot!”
Jungkook watches the design Taehyung is making, “damn, you are good at this!”
Taehyung chuckles, “the first time I was so bad, that bunny on your sweater came off terrible.”
Jungkook blinks, “that... that white lump in the middle of that sweat is supposed to be a bunny?!”
Taehyung elbows him, hard, “appreciate the effort?! I tried my best?!”
Jungkook laughs, pulling Taehyung closer, “you told Jimin you didn't ever have a crush on me. Then... why the bunny?”
Taehyung goes still, his eyes fixed on the sweater, “I like bunnies.”
Jungkook nuzzles closer, “is that so?”
Taehyung nods, jerky, “uh hmm.”
Jungkook lets his lips press over the omega's nape, “that's all?”
Taehyung grips the needles in his hands, “I told you, I was practising.”
Jungkook hums, “then, why the bunny? Out of everything else.”
Jungkook does not say anything more. But his eyes stay focused on Taehyung. Taehyung continues knitting for a few minutes.
“I wore your sweaters,” Jungkook looks at the wools around them, “rolled the uneven sleeves up and wore them. They were,” he shrugs, “my only gifts.”
Taehyung freezes, looking over.
Jungkook does not match those large eyes, he cannot bring himself to look at them and confess what a loser he was.
He shrugs, “for years, I had no one who would gift me anything. Crooked or perfect. Anything. I looked forward to your sweaters.”
“I would always think, who cares how they are? They are for me. Someone made it only for me,” Jungkook frowns, “maybe, that's why it hurt so bad when you said you were just practising for Boemseok. Maybe that's why it felt so terrible when you said it meant nothing to you.”
“It felt like you tore apart my years worth of happy memories like they meant nothing,” Jungkook blinks back the burn he feels in his eyes, “when you said it was all just nothing, I felt like someone erased all those memories for me. I used to wait for those sweaters.”
“I guess, that's how life is,” Jungkook plays with a string of a wool, “someone was showered with everything while I was trying to get by with your imperfections because they meant the world to me. I was, god, I was so desperate, eh?”
Jungkook feels vulnerable, oddly cold.
“You drew a bunny on the last bench of the classroom,” Taehyung whispers, looking back at the sweater he is doing, “I saw it and thought, how oddly enough... you looked like that bunny,” he smiles faintly, “with your wide eyes, perky ears, those teeth. You were a bunny.”
Taehyung chuckles, “you acted like one, too. Ran off when someone called you. Hid yourself during the lunch breaks. Always jumpy and avoiding everyone. You were,” Taehyung leans back against Jungkook, “you were beautiful too.”
Jungkook shakes his head, “don't do this again. No.”
“I would see you practice for the pack's troops,” Taehyung looks at the alpha, eyes moving on Jungkook's face, “I would take that extra mile to walk around your house because you would sit outside and build things for yourself. Remember the last sweater I gave you?”
Taehyung sighs, “you did not read the line I knitted on it?”
Jungkook frowns, thinking, “it said...” he frowns deeper, “it said...”
“It said, 'you are the red in my rainbow,'” Taehyung blushes, looking away, “it sounded good to me at that age. I was an idiot.”
Jungkook nods in recollection, “yes! Oh, it said that! Wait,” he frowns, confused, “what does it mean?”
Taehyung curses under his breath, shaking his head, “you are so stupid. I hate that you are this stupid. I am not explaining that!”
Jungkook blinks, “no, what does it mean?”
“It was a tomato red sweater,” Jungkook's nose scrunches up, “with that line and I wore it to bed because no way I was wearing it outside. I had a reputation and-”
Taehyung curses, “red is the colour of feelings, Jungkook,” he feels heat pooling on his face, “oh, God!”
“Huh?” Jungkook blinks.
Taehyung sighs, his shoulders dropping, “red is the first colour of the rainbow, I wanted you to know that you are the first person I thought about at that time. My first thought for everyday was you, and it's the colour of feelings,” he sighs, “love...”
“I could not bring myself to tell Jimin all that,” Taehyung twists his hands together, “I just simply could not say it because then he would ask why I went for Boemseok... I just could not tell him all this. It felt too personal.”
Jungkook watches the omega, “too personal?”
Taehyung shrugs, “yes. Too personal. You were too personal to me,” he looks over his shoulder at the alpha, long lashes fluttering as the omega blinks, “you are too personal to me.”
Jungkook grabs Taehyung by his chin to pull him in a kiss, “fuck!”
Taehyung whines, “what?”
“You are killing me here,” Jungkook pushes Taehyung down on the nest, shoving the woollen balls away and ignoring the mess it makes as the balls start to roll away, the strings all around them.
Taehyung lets the alpha cage him, hovering over him, “I am?”
Jungkook growls, “yes!”
Taehyung will never get used to the alpha's touches. He thinks to himself. Those hungry kisses, demanding hands almost tearing the clothes off of him, those intruding eyes watching every part of him. He feels breathless when Jungkook sinks into him, kissing his moans out of him.
Taehyung listens to the curses the alpha lets out near his ears. He holds the alpha in his arms, kissing those wide shoulders and scratching up that sweaty back. Jungkook growls when he releases in Taehyung, the knot forming in him. Taehyung arches, pulling the alpha is a kiss.
“I think you ruined the piece you were making,” Jungkook says, holding Taehyung to himself, “you leaked all over it.”
Taehyung smirks, looking at the alpha, shrugging, “well, I will make you a sweater out of it. Would you like that?”
The alpha groans, “stop it! Seriously!”
“At this rate, we are never getting out of this nest,” Jungkook nips Taehyung's bare shoulders, “seriously.”
Taehyung giggles, pulling the blanket over them, “I don't mind.”
As Jungkook holds him around the waist, pulling him flush against the alpha, Taehyung sighs. Content.
While the alpha pulls him in a kiss, Taehyung thinks he won't mind. He won't mind staying in his nest, the alpha's knot in him, the alpha's pups in him. He won't mind spending hours like this. In this close intimacy.
Jungkook scents the omega, thoroughly and possessively.
As the omega tilts his head, accepting the scenting and letting out his own pheromones to mark the alpha as his, they both fail to acknowledge the thrum in their heartbeats.
They both fail to feel how their heartbeats start to sync. Slowly.
Another petal blooms.
There is a weird kind of satisfaction in watching Jungkook wear the sweat he made. Taehyung watches the alpha while they all head towards the uphills to search Yoongi as he left. He sits inside the carriage and steals glances at the alpha, who is talking to Namjoon.
Jungkook is discussing the safety plans and how could Yoongi break it and where they went wrong.
“I will take up my duty,” Jungkook nods, “I think the teams are slacking. Otherwise, how did he leave like that?”
Taehyung feels that flutter in his chest. It is so surreal.
He jumps when Jungkook's hand casually comes to rest on his thigh. Taehyung looks down at where the alpha's hand is and looks up at Jungkook who is still busy discussing business with Namjoon.
“Just let hobi hyung lead the search teams, I will take this up,” Jungkook shrugs.
Jungkook's thumb circles on Taehyung's thigh, over the pant he is wearing. Taehyung bites down on his lip, looking at the alpha and back at his hand.
“Yes, you take over the security,” Namjoon waves his hands, “I am terrible in it.”
Jungkook chuckles, “I know that.”
Jungkook looks at Taehyung and arches a brow when he notices how Taehyung looks a little winded. He looks down at where his hand is and flinches before pulling away.
Taehyung feels the way his shoulders slump, for no reason, and he looks away from the alpha. A little antsy.
“Sorry,” Jungkook says as they climb out of the carriage when they reach, “I did not notice. I will not touch you-”
“Yes, that really bothered me,” Taehyung chuckles, eyes fixed ahead of himself, “unlike the other times when you bend me over. This really was bothersome, right!”
Jungkook takes a hold of his elbow, “hey, what do you mean?”
Taehyung shrugs, “I mean, why cannot you touch me like that when you,” he waves his hand, “have done way more than that?”
Jungkook looks a little awkward, nodding, “I did not do anything in public. So...”
Taehyung rounds on him with a sarcastic laugh, “yes, because,” he grabs the alpha's hand and places it on his stomach, “this is not public enough! No?!”
Jungkook looks around, speaking under his breath, “no one knows about this! Except for us! No?!”
Taehyung glares, “right!”
Jungkook curses, “oh, lord! Just say you want me to be affectionate with you publicly, and I will.”
Taehyung shrugs, storming past him, “do whatever you want, stupid alpha!”
He goes beside Jimin, taking the omega's hand in his. Jungkook curses, following behind.
Jungkook goes beside Taehyung and holds the omega back, “hop on.”
Taehyung stares, “what?”
Jungkook shows his back, “hop on.”
“Why?” Taehyung frowns.
“You are pregnant,” Jungkook arches a brow, “let's not make you climb the hill. Come on. Do not be stubborn about this.”
“No one knows,” Taehyung looks around, “how will you explain-”
“Us being married will explain it,” Jungkook tugs Taehyung to himself, “you see, people think married couples do these things. Romance!”
Taehyung rolls his eyes, letting Jungkook carry him on his back, “idiot.”
“There is nothing romantic in this,” Taehyung says after a few turns, “I feel nauseous because my stomach is pressed against your back and like a sack of potato. Let me down.”
Jungkook looks over his shoulder, “god, you have a lot of complaints!”
Taehyung pinches him, “down!”
Jungkook puts him down, and Taehyung sucks in a startled breath when the alpha holds his hand.
Taehyung looks at the alpha to see how Jungkook is avoiding his eyes, looking anywhere but at him.
“I am not used to physical affection,” Jungkook shrugs, “never done that.”
A small smile turns the corners of Taehyung's lips upwards. He intertwines their fingers, pulling Jungkook closer to his side. The alpha looks at him, curious. Taehyung gives him a small smile.
“It is okay,” he murmurs, “you will learn.”
Jungkook swallows, nodding, “okay.”
Taehyung walks slowly, Jungkook by his side. They search the entire place, finding nothing, until Jimin calls them inside the pack house to show Yoongi's portrait.
Taehyung is not sure about the tale Jungkook and Namjoon start to narrate. Of a cursed prince.
They leave the pack when Jimin falls unconscious. Taehyung watches Jungkook pick him up, carrying him down the hills. He follows right behind. Worried sick.
“I do not understand,” Jungkook curses, watching Jimin's pale face, “why is he so stressed? He asked hyung to leave!”
“There is a stage of every feeling where you feel it and do not realize it,” Taehyung looks at Jimin, “where it is there, under your skin and yet you do not get it. I think,” he wipes the tears off Jimin's eyes, “he is there. He does not realize his feelings yet.”
Taehyung looks at Jungkook, “sometimes, it is hard to accept your feelings changed. Just like that. Our ego does not let us,” his eyes wander over Jungkook's face, “we think, if we change our mind, then the past me comes off fickle minded, entirely wrong. We hate that, I guess.”
Jungkook looks down at Jimin's face, worry clear in his expression. He combs the omega's hair back, intently staring at Jimin while Taehyung watches him.
“It takes someone brave to accept that they changed,” Jungkook murmurs, “a braver one to welcome that change. I hope he is.”
Taehyung leans his head on Jungkook's shoulder, “yes. I think you are right.”
He closes his eyes when he feels Jungkook's lips press over his hair. A sigh escapes him.
“We have to take him to the doctor first,” Namjoon sounds worried, “then the packhouse.”
“Jimin's mother is trying to marry him off tonight,” Jungkook comes to the camp in a rush, “we have to stop her!”
Taehyung jumps, turning to face the alpha, “I am sorry?! He is still not awake!”
Jungkook nods, “yes! They do not care! They are marrying him to Taemin!”
“We have to do something!” Jungkook looks desperate, “I do not care what is the reason but mating an omega who cannot voice their consent,” his face twists, “it cannot happen!”
Taehyung's heart flutters, “yes, we have to do something. Stop this madness!”
“How can we stop them, there will be too many guards!” Namjoon says when they visit the elder.
Jungkook shrugs, “we will find a way. I will fight everyone in this pack, but I am not letting Taemin touch a hair on Jimin's body until Jimin says he wants it.”
He feels too much. Something in him blooms and leaves behind a sense of warmth. He watches the alpha fight with the guards to clear their path up the stairs. He watches Jungkook pounce on anyone who even tries to come anywhere near Taehyung and feels that warmth spread in him.
He watches Jungkook and Namjoon shoulder the door open and Taehyung stares at the unconscious omega on the bed. He storms inside, cursing at Jimin's mother.
Taehyung feels wronged. He feels angry. Seeing Jimin so helpless, he feels something break in him.
Jin and Hoseok are behind him. Jin is heavily pregnant. He waddles forward when he sees Jimin like that. Going to his side while Taehyung rounds on the others.
He will not let this pack ruin Jimin's life. He will not let them decide Jimin's life like they did his. Not again!
“I am trying to help!” Taemin shouts, “he is dying, Jin! Are you not seeing?!”
Taehyung pushes him away, the omega's eyes burn blue, “you will not touch him! Let him die!”
“Enough!” Jiwoo thunders, “alpha!” she turns to her husband, “get your men! Get them out of here!”
“My son is not going to suffer for that alpha's irrational decision!” his mother screams, tears rolling out of her eyes, “he will not leave me for that alpha! I will not watch my son die in front of me!”
Jimin feels Jin pull him closer, and he whimpers, trying to squirm closer.
The argument breaks in the room, and the loud voices echo in the room. Taehyung does not cower. Not under Jiwoo's burning glare or the packleader's commands.
Then Taehyung hears it. They all do. The argument dies.
A howl. A wolf's cry.
The howl makes Taehyung shudder. He stumbles, trying to find Jungkook blindly. Jimin whines, a whimper leaving his lips.
Jin looks out through the window, “is that-”
“The wolf's cry,” Taehyung whispers, eyes wide, “it is hurt!”
They all jump when the door of the bedroom bursts open. A guard stands there.
“A rogue was trying to trespass, alpha!” he huffs, trying to even out his breathing, “we shot our arrows. He is by the boundary.”
Jimin cries out, gasping for air. Jin holds him tightly to his chest.
Jimin's father shakes off the shock first, “get the wolf inside the pack!”
Jin sits up, “is that a white wolf?”
The guard nods, fearful eyes on Jin, “yes! That is why we shot. They are all dead, as we know. We thought...” he gulps, “it might be the spirit or something...”
Taehyung curses, “and, you were shooting a ghost?! What is wrong with you?! Get him in the pack! Oh, God!”
Jin looks at the wolves in the room, “change and go with them!”
Namjoon and Jungkook follow. Hoseok leaping out first.
Jimin loses his sense after that.
Taehyung rushes to his side, sitting beside the unconscious omega. He stares at his best friend with worry clean in his eyes.
"He will be fine," Jin assures, "if his alpha is fine, he will be fine."
Taehyung hopes so. He prays for that.
Taehyung is not sure when he fell asleep but he wakes up to Jungkook elbowing him.
"Get up, he is awake!"
Taehyung jumps, getting up, “Chim! You are awake!”
“Where...” Jimin coughs, looking like he is in utter pain.
“Where? Who?” Jungkook asks, doe eyes wide and on Jimin.
Taehyung swats him on the head, “you are so stupid!” he turns to Jimin with a soft smile, “in his hut. He needed nursing, chim. He was already weak, and our guards attacked him too. The arrows went through his shoulder.”
He tells the omega what he heard last before falling asleep, hoping Jimin will be fine with that much. For now. The omega is too weak to worry.
Taehyung hopes nothing went down within the hours he was asleep. Jimin looks at him with worried eyes nonetheless.
Jimin shakes his head, “t-take me the-” he grips Jungkook's shirt, “there.”
Jungkook nods, “yes, okay, okay!” then he looks at Taehyung, “but... how?”
Taehyung closes his eyes, inhaling deeply, “I regret the day I mated you. I really do! Just go and ask Namjoon hyung!”
“Regretted mating me, carrying my pups though,” Jungkook grumbles, walking out of the room.
Taehyung watches his alpha go with blush coating his cheeks, “if my pups turn out like him, I am doomed!”
Jimin winces while he tries to sit up, “pups?”
Taehyung shrugs, “later.”
Taehyung helps Jimin sit up, but Jimin is so weak, he feels faint all over again. By the time Namjoon comes in, Jimin is feeling nauseous.
“I want to see him,” Jimin whispers, clutching the bedsheet, “let me,” he coughs, whole body giving a spasm, “see him.”
Jimin hears his father arguing and his mother saying something, but Taehyung growls, curses at them until they are letting Namjoon carry Jimin with them.
“Do not forget, whatever it is, he is married to Taemin!” his mother shouts after them.
Taehyung snorts, “okay, okay!”
Taehyung watches the omega settle comfortably by Yoongi's head.
“You all go,” Jimin waves his hand, eyes stuck on Yoongi, “I will be here for him.”
Taehyung shakes his head, “chim, you are weak yourself. You cannot possibly-”
“I am not leaving,” Jimin states clearly, lying down beside Yoongi, watching the alpha sleep, “I am not leaving him.”
“Chim,” Taehyung tries again.
“Would you?” Jimin asks, eyes fixed on Yoongi, “if it was Jungkook?”
The question makes Taehyung still.
He would not.
The realization is terrifying and it makes him swallow.
He would never be able to leave Jungkook's side. He grips the bedpost, thinking how the thought of Jungkook in this state makes something turn in his stomach.
He shakes his head.
“You told Jimin.”
Taehyung looks over his shoulder at the alpha who is standing at the doorway. Taehyung folds the furs carefully over the bed, one by one, layering them for the coming winter.
“What?” he wonders, eyes still on his work.
“About the pups,” Jungkook walks inside.
Taehyung arches a brow, “I was not supposed to tell him?”
Jungkook picks up the bedsheet, helping Taehyung with it. Taehyung stands and watches the alpha tuck the sheet in with a small smile.
“I thought you wanted to keep it a secret,” Jungkook murmurs, “I was wrong?”
Taehyung looks at Jungkook, watches how the alpha is doing anything but looking at him. He reaches out to hold Jungkook's shoulder and make him turn.
“You did not want me to tell mimi?” Taehyung asks, “I wanted to tell him first. This is my first pup or pups. It felt special.”
Jungkook sits on the unmade bed, eyes wandering over Taehyung's face.
Taehyung nods, “my pups, Jungkook. I wanted to share it with my best friend first.”
Jungkook nods, “okay.”
Taehyung frowns, “are you upset?”
Jungkook breathes out a chuckle, “no. Overwhelmed.”
Jungkook chuckles, “come on. You got to admit,” he pulls Taehyung to himself, between his arms, “for a long time I thought you will hate the babies,” he shakes his head, “no, I really thought so. For a long time, I thought of them growing up with just me. Without knowing you.”
“I thought you will never tell someone we are expecting,” Jungkook's hand caresses Taehyung's stomach, eyes rooted there, “not so confidently, so happily. At least. I thought you will be ashamed-”
Taehyung presses his hand over Jungkook's lips, “they are my pups. I would never.”
Taehyung looks down at where Jungkook's hand is, “I love them,” his voice is a little heavy, “I loved them the first time I realized I had them. I loved them when the healer said I am pregnant. I loved them ever since. How can I not?” he looks at Jungkook, “I love them.”
Jungkook nods, his throat feeling a little tight, “thank you.”
Taehyung gives the alpha a small smile, “for loving our pups?”
Jungkook pulls Taehyung in for a kiss, “for just existing. I,” he shrugs, “I am terrible with words. Just,” he kisses Taehyung's forehead, “thank you.”
Taehyung feels that bile surging up to his throat. The bile is made of words. Just too many jumbled words. To express that weird feeling that grows in his heart. Every day. He wants to say, it grows like a disease, but he knows… it blooms like a flower.
It blooms for Jungkook.
“My moon,” Jungkook chokes on those words, emotions too thick in his voice, “thank you.”
Taehyung stands there, watches the alpha serenade him.
“For carrying your pups?” he asks, begs silently for the alpha to say more. He wants to hear more.
Jungkook shakes his head, “no...”
Jungkook smiles when Taehyung wipes the tears that roll out of the alpha's eyes.
“For the home you made for this rogue,” Jungkook shakes his head, “for this alpha who never had something he cherished or valued. For building him a home so selflessly.”
Taehyung sniffles, “stop.”
“You are not a rogue,” Taehyung buries himself against Jungkook's chest, “you are not.”
Jungkook holds the omega there, a smile on his lips that he feels, “I always felt like one. I always felt like I do not belong. To no one. To nothing.”
“You belong to me,” Taehyung whispers.
Taehyung jolts in Jungkook's arms when he feels those two words on the tip of his tongue. He soaks in the alpha's scent while the alpha nuzzles him, kissing down the side of his neck. Taehyung settles, closing his eyes with a small smile.
“Let's go to that place tonight,” Taehyung murmurs against Jungkook's shoulder, “the cliff. I,” he looks at the alpha, pulling back a little, “really miss that place.”
Jungkook nods, “okay,” he hesitates then, “let me run to the camp and exchange my duty with someone then.”
Taehyung nods, laughs when Jungkook gets off the bed in a hurry, just to stumble.
“Careful!” Taehyung calls after the alpha while Jungkook runs out of the hut.
Taehyung goes back to cleaning the bed.
“What are you doing, you will harm yourself like that!”
Taehyung jumps, grasping the basket of clothes and standing at the edge of the river. He looks over to see Jiwoo coming down the steps to him. Taehyung frowns, already feeling the dread fill him at the sight of the omega.
“What do you mean?” Taehyung frowns, watching the omega.
Jiwoo curses, “you are pregnant. Why are you carrying that heavy basket?”
Taehyung freezes, “who told you?”
Jiwoo shrugs, “Jungkook?”
Taehyung stares at the woman, “Jungkook told you that?”
Jiwoo nods, “yes?”
“I am his best friend,” Jiwoo looks over Taehyung's shoulder, thinking, “so, of course he told me today.”
Taehyung tongues the inside of his cheek, “and, why are you pretending to be nice all of a sudden?”
Jiwoo looks at him with a small smile, “pretending? Am I?”
Jiwoo waves her hand, “look, I am here to just apologize,” she tucks the unruly strand of hair behind her ear, “I agree, I hated you. Your guts and what you put kookie through,” she shrugs, “god, I hated you for it. Then, at some point,” she swallows...
“I started to think of myself in your place,” she nods when Taehyung's jaw hardens, “as his omega. Being his mate,” she holds her hands up, “thought of doing something to you too. You know?”
Taehyung does not utter a word, glaring at the woman.
Jiwoo's lips twitch.
“Then today,” Jiwoo's eyes glisten, her smile carries the warmth Taehyung never saw on her face before, “he came to me to tell me his omega is having his babies,” Jiwoo gives a short, endeared laugh, “he was so excited that he can finally share the news with me. You know?”
“Told me how happy he is that finally he can tell his best friend,” Jiwoo wipes her eyes, “and, I realized, I have never seen him that happy. I never made him that happy,” she looks at Taehyung with a warm but small smile, “you did. He was so happy, Taehyung. For the first time.”
Jiwoo shrugs, “and, I always wanted him to be that happy. Selfishly wished for him to be that happy because if he does not deserve him, no one else does,” her eyes trail over Taehyung's face, “I know you hate me and forever will, but I had to come here to tell you this, that...”
“Thank you,” she nods, earnest, “for giving him a chance. For,” she giggles, looking at Taehyung's stomach and up at him, “for having his babies. God, kookie's pups. I still need to wrap my head around that. I am,” she wipes her eyes, “happy for him, you know? So much.”
She bows to Taehyung, “you have all the rights to doubt me and I cannot do anything about that after I did everything to earn it. But, I had to get this off my chest. I always wanted nothing but happiness for Jungkook and turns out,” her voice turns soft, “you are his happiness.”
“He told me he loves you,” Jiwoo watches how Taehyung's hard expression turns a little flustered and then warmth floods into those cheeks, she bites back a smile of endearment, “and, he said your pups will be the most beautiful pups in the world because, look at you.”
Jiwoo's voice is soft, “I am happy to know it is reciprocated,” she nods when Taehyung's eyes turn wide, “it is okay,” she holds her hand up, “if you did not figure it out yet. You will. I will go now,” she points at the basket, “next time, please ask a maid to get those. Yes?”
Taehyung nods, “I will,” he looks down at the basket, “tell someone. No one knew up until now, so,” he shrugs, “I will get someone.”
Jiwoo hums, “also,” she hesitates, “I am sorry.”
Jiwoo smiles, “I will take your leave now.”
Taehyung stops Jiwoo, “listen...”
Jiwoo stops, “yes?”
Taehyung does not match her eyes, “growing up,” he shrugs, “you are his best friend. Did he ever,” he waves his hand, “had affairs? Someone he liked-”
“You,” Jiwoo nods when Taehyung's eyes snap to hers, “he always had his eyes for only you, Taehyung.”
“He told me he liked you when he was ten,” Jiwoo smiles, thinking back to those days, “both of us lying by the field and watching the stars. Wondering who our mates will be. He stared at the stars and told me he did not want anyone else if it was not you. He was ten.”
Jiwoo hugs herself, “the second time he told me that, he was fully sobbing. Showing me his mark and telling me how hopeless he feels,” her eyes brim with tears, “I still remember how crushing that pain felt, Taehyung. I wished for the moongoddess to do something about it.”
She looks at Taehyung with a playful smirk, “turns out, she did.”
Jiwoo gives him a small smile, “today he told me he loves you, and it felt like that ten years old boy finally found the one he wished upon the stars,” she hums, “you are his wish come true.”
“Sometime it scares me,” Taehyung whispers, turns to face the river, “the intensity of his feelings. He loved me for years now. His love is so deeply rooted,” Taehyung voices the things he bottled inside him for so long, “what if I cannot return it to the fullest?”
Jiwoo thinks, shaking her head, “it is not how long a person loved someone, Taehyung. It is how much you love them,” she comes to stand beside Taehyung, “how much you are willing to return. It is not a race. No one will measure your feelings. You are to love him as you want.”
“You cannot feel insecure about your way of loving,” Jiwoo breathes out deeply, “your pace, your depth. You should not feel insecure or think it will not be enough. This is not a race. Just,” she takes a step back, “when love knocks on your door, accept it bravely.”
Taehyung slowly sits on the last step of the river, his legs dipping into the water. He watches the sunset.
“𝑌𝑜𝑢 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝘩𝑖𝑠 𝑤𝑖𝑠𝘩 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑡𝑟𝑢𝑒.”
Taehyung looks at the river with a small smile. He never felt like this.
He feels special.
They do go to the cliff and spend their evening there. On their way back, Jungkook picks up some food from the packhouse while Taehyung goes to Jimin's hut to check up on him. While going to sleep, Taehyung rolls over to rest on Jungkook's chest.
“You told Jiwoo about the pups.”
Jungkook's arm is around Taehyung, “yes. She is my best friend. Was I not supposed to?”
Taehyung thinks about telling Jungkook about the way Jiwoo said she wanted to take his place or harm him but he decides against it. He wants to move on. Past it all.
He shrugs, “it is okay.”
Jungkook hums, “sure?”
Taehyung hums, “I am sure.”
Jungkook chuckles, “well, good. I am glad.”
Taehyung traces a pattern on Jungkook's chest, “we are not going to accommodate her during her heats anymore though.”
Jungkook throws his head back and laughs, “no. Surely not.”
Taehyung hums, “also, you are to never get me lilies, or I am leaving you.”
Jungkook looks at him with mirthful eyes, “and, here I was thinking of naming my pup, if one is a girl, Lily.”
Taehyung pinches Jungkook's nipple, “never the time for that to be funny. Trust me!”
Jungkook grasps Taehyung's wrist and presses a kiss against the skin.
“Also, you will never be physical with her,” Taehyung frees his hand to point a finger at Jungkook, “not enough to get her scent on you. Also-”
“I never knew you were this possessive,” Jungkook laughs.
Taehyung stops for a second to think how Jungkook is right. He was never possessive with Boemseok. Hell, the alpha slept with others and Taehyung agreed without feeling much about it.
Taehyung looks up at Jungkook, eyes wandering over that smiling face, “well, you belong to me.”
Jungkook's smile dims to something satisfied, he hums, “that I do.”
Taehyung's heart flutters, he buries his face against the alpha's neck, “so, I get to decide the boundaries.”
Jungkook's arms tighten around Taehyung, “okay. Also, why are you writing 'alpha' on my chest?”
Taehyung realizes the pattern he is making is the word 'alpha.' He stops and Jungkook does not rush him.
In the darkness of the room, with his face buried against Jungkook, Taehyung feels less vulnerable. He pulls back a little to look at the alpha in the eyes.
“𝑊𝘩𝑒𝑛 𝑙𝑜𝑣𝑒 𝑘𝑛𝑜𝑐𝑘𝑠 𝑜𝑛 𝑦𝑜𝑢𝑟 𝑑𝑜𝑜𝑟, 𝑎𝑐𝑐𝑒𝑝𝑡 𝑖𝑡 𝑏𝑟𝑎𝑣𝑒𝑙𝑦.”
Taehyung breathes out, “because, you are,” he feels the tremor in his chest, but his voice is steady, “my alpha.”
It might not be everything but to Taehyung, it is the first step.
Jungkook swallows, his arms flexing around Taehyung. Taehyung waits with bated breath. The alpha pulls him in for a hug, those lips silently pressing against his forehead.
Taehyung has never felt so safe before. So comfortable. So sure of something. Someone.
So, when the alpha buries his face against Taehyung's nape and Taehyung feels the moisture against his skin, he lets his own tears flow.
Holding onto each other, in their nest, they cry. For how it all feels so right.
“I never said this but,” Taehyung whispers, “I am glad,” he swallows, voice muffled against Jungkook, “I am glad I found you.”
Jungkook does not move, but his breath leaves him in a shaky exhale, “I still wake up thinking this is all my fevered dream. Or, my worst nightmare.”
“That one day I will wake up alone and go out to see you in his arms,” Jungkook's voice is fearful, “it will be just the same. You and him.”
Taehyung thinks, the realization is so new to him, “I hope it never happens, because,” he whimpers, “I do not want to leave you.”
“You said he was the earth to my moon,” Taehyung pulls back to cup the side of Jungkook's face, “but, a moon is nothing without the sun, and it's selfless help that makes the moon glow its brightest,” Taehyung's heart skips a beat when he realizes, “you are the sun to my moon.”
“The ball of fire, as they see you,” Taehyung wipes Jungkook's eyes, stares at the alpha with mesmerized eyes, “but, you spread warmth. You selflessly help me be a better version of myself. I am glad you are here. You brought the brightest day after the darkest night in my life.”
- Good night, people. Broken bonds is coming to an end very soon. I hope you liked the update. x
- If you want to support me, my writing, here's my kofi : ko-fi.com/aamyungv