jimin is an avid enjoyer of a youtube channel where a chef only shows his hands and voice while doing overly complicated recipes. when jimin recognizes those hands and voice, he thinks he has met his favorite youtuber, and he’s willing to give dating another chance.
• this is a commission for a chef yoongi au.
• many mentions and detailed descriptions of food, and while this is mainly a cute and fluffy get-together story, there will be a focus on unhealthy relationships with food, body image issues, and eventual self-acceptance.
In a small but modern studio apartment with a tiny bed, living room, and kitchen only a step away, Jimin puts together something quick for his weekend lunch. He’s still wearing pajamas, constantly sipping water from a glass to fight his hangover, and juggling with a pan.
He turns off the stove, and with delicacy, Jimin plates his lunch, moving the fried skinless and boneless chicken thigh to a dish. Then, in a bigger bowl, he adds a dressing to his salad and finishes it with a small side dish of rice and a refill for his large glass of water.
He sits on a small folding table for two, pushed against the wall to occupy the least space possible.
Before eating, Jimin moves to the most crucial weekend ritual, even more, important than cooking: finding the perfect video to watch on his phone while he has lunch.
There’s not much browsing to do today, though. Jimin has a to-go-to creator on Youtube and a video posted three days ago waiting for him. A mid-sized channel called Chef Min.
It’s not a regular cooking channel. This chef doesn’t show his face, only his hands.
It features high-end gourmet dishes with expensive ingredients and complicated skills that no amateur possesses. But, at the same time, it’s some ASMR hybrid where the chef’s voiceovers can be too distracting at times, or maybe Jimin finds the man’s explanations soothing.
The chef posts once a week, and Jimin religiously watches his videos during his weekend lunchtime. But, it’s not like Jimin watches it for the recipes or passion for the cooking art. He can’t cook anything the Chef makes; Jimin’s abilities in the kitchen are subpar at best.
His chicken salad looks lifeless next to the grilled octopus laid over quinoa puree, served with an olive sauce and fresh edible flowers that appear on his phone’s screen as the video starts. But Jimin finds that watching cooking videos while eating helps him feel satiated.
And yet, that’s not all the charm behind Chef Min’s videos. Jimin is a simple twenty-seven-year-old gay man who is a little too into the chef’s voice and hands. His right hand's long and veiny fingers grip a grill pan’s handle while explaining how to cook octopus.
The man on the screen passes the handle to his left hand in a swift movement before turning off the stove and gesturing at a liquid in the pan with his pointer finger, saying something about a reduction. Jimin has yet to learn what he means but gets easily distracted.
That same pair of hands that Jimin watches on his phone rub against each other off-screen under running tap water, cleaning any food remnant of them.
Yoongi turns off the tap, dries his hands with a cloth, and turns to watch Jungkook, who sits by his kitchen's marble countertop.
He’s swallowing, slurping even, the butternut squash mousse Yoongi just finished preparing.
“Holy fuck. This shit’s good!” Jungkook sounds upset, frowning before moving on to the lobster tartare next. Yoongi crosses his arms over his chest as Jungkook moans around a spoon.
But he returns to the mousse, inhaling the naturally-colored squashed powder Yoongi prepared to decorate the dish. “Take your time enjoying the flavors,” Yoongi pleads.
“Can I drink the wine?”
“Of course. I just said in the video that it’s the best companion to the meal.”
Jungkook’s large gulp from the expensive wine makes Yoongi flinch, but he controls his expression.
“Today’s shots are great, hyung,” he says, debating whether to return to the mousse or the tartare. His camera and microphones are already uninstalled and inside their bags.
“I’ll edit them during the week and have the video ready on the weekend. Then, I’ll send it to you so you can review it.” Yoongi nods, grabbing a spoon and trying his mousse. “We’re only three weeks ahead with our posting schedule. When can you film more than one video?”
“Not during these weeks. I have a lot of work.”
Jungkook points at Yoongi with his spoon before picking a piece of lobster. “Our Youtube channel is a real job too.”
“The job that lets me buy expensive ingredients for our channel, brat.”
“The catering service?”
“There’s a lot of events this week at the Hotel, and we’re understaffed. So I’ll have to serve at some live cooking buffets.”
“Nice. You’ll have to interact with humans and put on that customer service charm.” Yoongi hates interacting with diners, and Jungkook knows it.
“Can I finish that glass?” Jungkook points at the wine.
Even though it’s expensive, Yoongi offers Jungkook a fond nod. Then, he finishes eating the food they just recorded, and Yoongi is proud of the taste. He’s pleased, too, knowing he still enjoys cooking in his free time.
It’s late at night when a taxi parks outside a fancy Hotel. Jimin walks outside, wearing a gray suit and white shirt but no tie, hoping to look elegant but relaxed. At the Hotel’s reception, his friend and coworker Hoseok waits for him, fitting in just right with the place.
He also ditched a tie, but his suit is white— Jimin wouldn’t dare to wear such a light color, but Hoseok’s body frame makes it work. A heart-shaped smile grows on his face when he sees Jimin. “There you are.”
“Am I late?” Jimin stops by his side, fixing his sleeves.
“No, but I didn’t want to go upstairs without you. I’d be forced to socialize.”
“I’m here now,” Jimin says, bringing a hand to the small of Hoseok’s back to guide him to the elevator. They nod at the man pressing the buttons and fall quiet when more people enter.
“Isn’t this place a bit too fancy for our company?”
“Twentieth anniversary is a big deal. We should enjoy the free food and booze.”
The elevator stops, and they enter another reception only to head toward a large room. If the first floor was fancy, this one shuts the pair up.
Glass walls look down on the city; a photographer hangs around, and a DJ and a live cooking buffet are the last touches. “Wow, they went all out,” Hoseok says.
“They did.” Jimin glances around. “All our clients are here.”
“It’s a party for them. I’m surprised they invited us.”
A waiter approaches them with glasses of champagne, and they both hold onto the flutes. “We need to eat something if we want to drink,” Hoseok says after a long gulp.
Eating late always gives Jimin trouble sleeping, but he knows that Hoseok’s advice is correct.
Jimin glances at the live cooking buffet where four cooks are doing different activities in each section, but Jimin’s eyes fall on the cook stir-frying something. “It doesn’t need to be a full meal, just some bread to fight the alcohol— or are you hungry, Jimin?”
“You’re staring at the meat station,” Hoseok says.
“Not the station. The cook.”
“Mmh?” Hoseok follows Jimin’s gaze, discreetly watching a man around Jimin’s height but much broader, with a sharp jawline and cat-like eyes work a pan with practiced ease.
“He’s hot,” Jimin says.
He is, with the folded sleeves of a tight black shirt and a matching cooking hat - not the classic tall ones, but a smaller one. “Is he, or does this have to do with your obsession with that faceless Youtuber?” Hoseok asks.
“What? I can’t find random men hot anymore?”
“Why would it have to do with him?” Hoseok sips from his champagne, side-eyeing Jimin, and Jimin gives up. “Fine. Being a cook like that Youtuber makes him kinda hotter, yes.”
Hoseok snorts. “Go up to him and say hi! You haven’t liked someone in a while.”
“Don’t think I will anytime soon.”
It looks like Hoseok wants to ask about it, but he knows well that this isn’t the right moment. Hoseok also knows that Jimin won’t try his shoot with a stranger, not even if his friend encourages it. But still, Jimin looks at the buffet again.
And this time, he meets the cook’s eyes as if he noticed someone staring. Jimin looks away in a second, drowning the remaining liquid from his glass, neck burning. The man is absurdly handsome.
But Jimin doesn’t approach him; co-workers come up to him, and Jimin gets distracted.
Hoseok and Jimin get lost in polite conversations with co-workers. Jimin doesn’t glance at the buffet table again, but after a couple more glasses of champagne and once a familiar drunken warmth spreads through his chest, Jimin recognizes that it’s time to go for food.
The buffet table is long, with many stations and choices. Jimin, probably impulsed by alcohol, skips the bread and entree table, as well as the vegetarian option and fresh fish station. He’s craving meat.
There’s someone already at the meat station, and Jimin has to wait.
The handsome cook doesn’t notice Jimin’s presence, focusing on his task and talking to the person in front of him while frying thin strips of meat.
Jimin finds himself drawn to his hands, gripping the pan’s handle tightly while making fire come up from somewhere—
Jimin is always confused about this part of cooking, he knows there’s maybe a strong liquor or some other alcohol, and he’s sure it’s called flambé. Chef Min calls it that way in his videos. He moves the pan with his right hand and changes hands before turning off the stove.
That’s how Chef Min does it. Many cooks must have that habit.
Jimin looks up, focusing on the cook’s voice as he explains why he’d accompany that meat with sautéed vegetables instead of fresh. And Jimin recognizes that voice. How could he not?
He’s the man from the videos.
When Jimin finally reaches his station, he does not doubt that it’s him. His face matches his hands and voice so well. The man politely smiles at Jimin. “Hello, what can I get for you?”
“Scallops.” It’s something Jimin remembers he’s seen a lot in Chef’s Min videos.
The man nods and searches for a different pan. “Good choice, sir.” The cook uses a spoonful of butter, and without glancing at Jimin, he says, “I saw you’ve been drinking only champagne, so seafood is a much better match than red meat.”
He was watching Jimin during the night.
That comment and the alcohol in his body forces Jimin to take a tiny step forward. Cooking scallops is quick, and Jimin will need more time than that if he wants to talk to the handsome man. “You always recommend scallops,” he blurts.
The cook looks up while jostling the pan.
His intense gaze makes Jimin speak lower. “On your videos.”
If he’s not the chef from the videos, Jimin will make a fool of himself. But if his feeling is correct, then this means he’ll meet his favorite creator. “You are— Chef Min from Youtube, right?”
“Oh wow,” the man says. Jimin looks up, their eyes meet, and embarrassment spreads through Jimin’s body. “Do you watch that?”
It’s not some obscure channel, but Jimin still blushes. “You have a reasonable amount of followers!”
The cook chuckles dryly, and it’s so attractive.
“Yes, I guess we do, but I’ve never met one of my subscribers.” Jimin blinks, slowly processing that this really is Chef Min from Youtube. “How did you recognize me? I don’t show my face at all. Is it the voice?”
Jimin is ashamed, but he’s already here, so he goes for it.
“The hands and the voice. All the frames in your videos are the same, and I’ve seen most of them, so I remember your hands. And you talk a lot in the video, so the voiceovers….”
Before Jimin can combust into nothing, the cook breaks into a broad smile. “That makes sense.”
A slight pause where the sounds of scallops cooking are the only background between them; everything else from the party is lost, chatter and music. “I suppose you like my videos,” the man says.
Jimin perks up. “So much! I always watch them.”
“Do you like cooking?”
Jimin can’t control his grimace, making the chef chuckle like he never does in the video. “You don’t? You like food, then?”
“I like watching you prepare food,” it’s what Jimin settles for.
The chef doesn’t stop smiling. “Thank you. Well, you’re getting the in-person show now.”
“I hope it’s as enjoyable as the videos.”
“It is,” Jimin says earnestly, but he’s not looking at the chef’s hands.
Both break their staring contest once Yoongi has to turn off the stove. “Thank you for watching my silly side-project. Here are your scallops, by the way.”
“I hope you like them.”
“I’m sure I will! Thank you.” Jimin watches the scallops in his dish. It’s something Chef Min has prepared, and Jimin can’t wait to try it; it’s almost a fantasy come true to try what he has always seen on the screen. But he also doesn’t want to leave.
They stare at each other again, and before neither can say a word, there’s someone already approaching the station. “It was nice meeting you. I’ll most definitely enjoy this and get going,” Jimin squeaks.
“Ah, okay,” the cook sounds disappointed. “Enjoy your food!”
Yoongi watches the man return to his coworker, more than smitten by him only after a small interaction. He’s gorgeous. Easily the most beautiful person Yoongi has seen. But Yoongi has to focus on work, and he’s already bowing to someone else and picking up a different pan.
While working, though, his thoughts keep drifting to the man. Yoongi had noticed him earlier; hard not to with that pretty face. But it turned out he watched Yoongi’s videos and was nervous about meeting Yoongi. It’s a crazy coincidence and not an opportunity Yoongi should pass.
At Yoongi’s big age, third base, opportunities like this are ones he has to seize. But he doesn’t know how to approach the guy again. He doesn’t even know his name or if he’s dating the handsome guy by his side. And he doesn’t seem interested in returning to the buffet table.
He finishes his scallops and gives the empty dish to a waiter without glancing at Yoongi, and Yoongi feels the same dread he experienced only in culinary school and his first job interviews. Yoongi wants to leave his station and ask if he liked the food, but he can't.
He’s dying to know if the pretty man liked the scallops. It’s not like Yoongi did much, but the opinion of a faithful subscriber matters to him. But he never finds out.
In the end, the man leaves with his handsome co-worker, and Yoongi stays working at his station.
But he perks up when he sees one of the girls chatting with the pretty guy earlier, making a line in the buffet. The guy might not be single, but Yoongi doesn’t lose anything if he asks. He dared tell Yoongi that he watched his videos, and Yoongi can dare to ask around too.
It’s almost time to leave the office, and Jimin keeps glancing at the hour while typing on his laptop. Even if he’s at the office, his mind is somewhere else. He can’t stop thinking about the scallops waiting in his freezer and the excellent dinner he’ll have tonight.
He can’t forget the taste of the ones he had on the weekend, the ones Chef Min prepared. Jimin watched a video where he cooked them, but he got too distracted by his voice and imagining the handsome face he now knows goes with it, and he had to look for another recipe video.
He can do a simple one and prepare it tonight, so he can’t wait to leave the office. He takes a coffee break when he finishes sending an e-mail to the investors of Jimin’s current project. A coffee break with no coffee since it’s bad for his health. Tea is much better.
He sips his tea when one of his co-workers enters the office’s tiny kitchen. She beams when she sees Jimin, and he hopes she doesn’t ask him to help him with something. He wants to get home soon. “Hey,” he bows when she stops by his side.
“Jimin ah, I was looking for you!”
“Did something happen?” Jimin moves to clean his empty mug.
“Do you remember the chef from the company party?”
Of course, Jimin does. “Yes,” he says while washing his hands, without looking at her.
“Well, he asked me about you.” And Jimin wasn’t expecting that at all.
“Yeah. He didn’t ask me first. He asked a few people before me, and then one of them told me the cook was asking for this guy in the company's state branch. And so I went up and told him we worked together, and he asked if you were interested in men and single.”
“No! He gave me his number so I could give him yours. Or you can have his number too. He wants to talk to you. Here, I’ll show you.” She searches for her phone’s messaging app and shows Jimin a chat with a man named Min Yoongi. Min. He really is the Youtuber.
The texts are simple; the latest one is an exchange from the chef reminding her to talk to Jimin and a reply from Jimin’s co-worker saying she’ll ask today. “Oh, God,” Jimin covers his mouth.
“Is that a yes?”
“I don’t know!”
“He’s handsome, isn’t he? Or you didn’t like him?”
A pause. “He thought you didn’t like him because you left, but he still wanted to get your number.”
“He thought I didn’t like him? It’s not like that; I just don’t— do dates and stuff. At all. And I was so nervous around him when we talked.” Because Jimin acted like a fan.
“But he went out of his way to ask about you and get your information! Isn’t that romantic?”
Most times, Jimin wouldn’t care if a person did something romantic for him, but it’s Chef Min. “Why didn’t you tell me sooner?”
“I wanted to see your face. You’re all red.”
Jimin rolls his eyes, but he knows he’s blushing bright red. “You can give him my number.”
“Wow, you still want him to text you first, making him work hard for it, Jimin ah.”
Jimin hasn’t dated in so long; he doesn’t know what to do. “What am I supposed to say?”
“I don’t know. Something like, hi, it’s Jimin from the event. I heard you were asking about me.”
“I would never start a conversation like that!”
His coworker laughs, amused. “I didn’t know you were so shy around guys! You’re so confident and bossy all the time.”
“It’s because I’m not shy. So what happens is that I don’t date and don’t know how to.”
“But you want me to give him your number.”
It’s Chef Min. Of course, he wants it. “Yes. Please.”
“I’ll give him your number, then,” she winks.
“Thanks,” Jimin’s heart is beating fast.
Yoongi -Chef Min's supposed name- didn’t text Jimin that night. Jimin cooks the scallops for dinner and pairs them with a large salad bowl and tea. He doesn’t even care that they don’t taste like the ones Yoongi prepared; he’s too excited about talking to him again.
Early in the morning, Jimin walks out of the shower after working out, and while still shirtless, he checks his phone and finds a message from an unknown number.
“Is this Jimin? I’m Min Yoongi. The guy from the videos.”
Jimin tries to hide his gasp, even if he’s home alone.
“Hi,” he types while bouncing his leg after taking a seat.
The response comes quickly. “Your co-worker told me your name.”
“Yes, it’s Park Jimin.”
“Did you like the scallops I made for you, Park Jimin?”
Jimin stares at the screen as a fluttering feeling settles on his chest.
“I did! They were so good. I should have told you that night, but I was embarrassed about approaching you again.” To get his point across, Jimin sends a photo from his dinner. “I cooked them yesterday because I’m still craving them, but it wasn’t half as good as yours.”
Yoongi sees the photo but doesn’t reply, and Jimin panics quickly.
“Oh God, I shouldn’t have sent that. Your plates are always so pretty, and mine looks terrible.”
“Please, I’m flattered you cooked it. But if it didn’t taste the same, I could teach you how to make them.”
“You have a video where you explain how to prepare them, but it was hard to follow.” Jimin fights the urge to send a crying emoji. It would be too forward, too flirty, but all his worries disappear with Yoongi’s following text.
“I meant private lessons.”
Jimin locks his phone.
Chef Min, from the videos he likes watching, with the perfect hands and sexy voice, is flirting with Jimin. When he looks down at his screen, a new message notification has arrived. “Am I too straightforward?”
“No, you’re not.”
“Is it too straightforward to ask you on a date?”
Jimin locks his phone again. He can’t do this, he hasn’t in so long, but at the same time, he wants to. He doesn’t date anymore, but Chef Min is so dreamy that Jimin finds himself typing before thinking twice. “It’s not. You can ask.”
Jimin closes his eyes.
When he opens them again, he finds a text waiting for him. “Can I take you out for dinner sometime this week?”
“I’d like that,” Jimin answers.
“Good. I can’t wait to see you again.”
And just like that, Jimin has a date with his favorite chef. How did that happen?
Later that day, Yoongi asks Jimin if he eats fish. Jimin says yes, and then he asks if Jimin likes Japanese food; Jimin again says yes. The next day, Yoongi sends a place and asks if Jimin likes it. Jimin finds it in himself to ask how long Yoongi took to find the right place.
“Cheeky,” Yoongi replies. Jimin hides his smile in his tea mug. “It took me much more than I’m proud to admit.”
"I like the place," Jimin types before he has to lock his phone and get back to work. But they text again to set a day and hour when they can make it.
It’s been a while since Jimin did any of this, and while he’s nervous because dating never ends well for him, he’s also excited.
Jimin cannot see any of Yoongi’s videos during the wait; just hearing his voice talking about a cooking technique has him growing shy all over again.
On a Tuesday night, Jimin arrives at the Japanese restaurant. Yoongi works on the weekends, so they settled for this day, even if it meant ending the date earlier because of Jimin's work.
Yoongi is already waiting outside, sans cook uniform, but still wearing black clothes.
Focusing on his clothes is hard when all Jimin can see is long soft black hair. “Hey,” Yoongi smiles when he notices Jimin's presence.
“You have long hair,” is Jimin's eloquent greeting.
As if remembering he has, Yoongi brings a hand to his fringe. “Ah, yes.”
“I didn’t know.”
“I don’t show it in the videos and put it in a bun during work.” A pause, and then Yoongi smirks. “Do you like it?” Jimin nods shyly. “You look good. That shade of green suits you.”
Jimin pulls at the sleeves of his oversized sweater. It’s one of his favorites. “Thank you.”
“Let’s go inside.”
Yoongi hovers his hand over Jimin’s lower back but doesn’t touch him when guiding him inside the restaurant. Jimin appreciates that. It’s a pretty place, not too elegant, but still fancier than a place one would come to with friends. It’s perfect for a date.
They sit at the table and browse the menu in a slightly awkward silence.
From behind the menu, Jimin peeks at Yoongi, wearing a concentrated frown, forcing Jimin to put his menu down. “Why don’t you choose something for me? You know more about food.”
Yoongi’s smile is sweet.
“I’ll ask for something we can share. How does that sound?”
Jimin is into anything Yoongi suggests. Yoongi asks for a bottle of white wine and a set of various dishes, even requesting the order in which they should bring them. It shouldn’t be as attractive as Jimin finds it.
Once the waiter walks away, Yoongi focuses on Jimin and sighs. “I’m rusty, if I’m honest. I haven’t had a date in a long time.”
“Me neither!” Jimin admits, relaxing a bit. “It’s been a while for me too. I made it obvious, I think. With how nervous I was during everything.”
“But you seem rather confident and calm!”
“‘cus I’m trying hard. I didn’t want to lose my shot once you said you watched my videos. You’re— you must hear it all the time, but you’re beautiful.”
Jimin bites his lower lip, controlling his grimace, but Yoongi still notices it.
“Sorry. First dates are hard,” he chuckles. “Maybe sincere compliments aren’t the best conversation starters. So what are we supposed to talk about when getting to know each other?”
Jimin hums before leaning closer. “It’s not what to talk about but what we shouldn’t talk about.”
Yoongi also leans in. “I like that idea. I’d say let’s not talk about food, except if we want to praise or complain about our order.”
“Oh. But doesn’t that exclude a lot of you? I mean, your work is food related. And we met through food. At the buffet and watching your channel.”
“It’s a challenge to broaden our conversation and get to know me as something more than the Chef with recognizable hands and voice.”
Jimin tries to hide his embarrassment at how quick he recognized Yoongi. “Fine. What about exes?”
“That’s the topic you want to avoid?”
“Good. No food. No exes.” Yoongi gives a curt nod before growing serious. “How was your day at work?”
Jimin starts telling Yoongi about his work; surprisingly enough, conversations flow easily. They sip from the wine and pick on their food as Jimin rants about his office.
“But social programs is what you wanted to do, right? Your passion.”
Jimin offers an unsure nod. “I guess so. I wanted to do more in-person work, you know, with kids and communities directly, but now I organize programs for companies or the state, which isn’t exactly the same.”
Yoongi finds everything Jimin says interesting. “How did you know you wanted to do that?”
And the smile on Jimin’s face is addicting. “I used to volunteer at a nursing home and teach dance classes to the elderly, which was great, and I wanted to do it at a bigger scale.”
“Do you like dancing?”
The end of his smile quivers. “Yeah. But I haven’t done that in a while, either.”
“We could go dancing sometime,” Yoongi says while picking a fish cut and dipping it in the sauce. “I’m not that fond of clubs, but with the right music, I can get into it.”
“That sounded a bit pretentious. What’s the ‘right’ music?”
Yoongi defends his choice of words and explains there’s no ‘bad’ music but music that is ‘right’ for you, and he rants about it. Jimin listens attentively until he supports his face on his palm.
“We could go singing.”
Yoongi is smitten. He thinks Jimin is too, and the date is going great, but while Yoongi said not to talk about food, it doesn’t mean he overlooks food. The fish is delicious, cold, and fresh, but Yoongi can’t focus much on it once he notices that Jimin never finishes his share.
The waiter keeps bringing dishes with four or six pieces to share. But Jimin only has one or two when it’s obvious he liked it and lets Yoongi have the rest. Yoongi doesn’t ask about it, but he wonders why. Maybe he had too much to eat at lunch and is still full.
Or maybe he’s pretending to like the food to please Yoongi and not ruin their date, but Yoongi has seen him hum around the food a lot. Perhaps he’s as nervous as Yoongi, but instead of Yoongi, who rambles to fight anxiety, Jimin has trouble eating. Nervousness does that.
Maybe he wants to bottom tonight and isn’t eating much because of that. Yoongi stops that thought as soon as it forms; he needs to get it together— how is he thinking of sex so soon? He hasn’t gotten laid in too long, and it’s showing.
He’s not even going to get a kiss tonight.
It’s too soon for that.
There’s only one goal for the end of the night, and it’s when Jimin reminds him he has work tomorrow morning, and they step outside to walk toward the bus station. Yoongi stops in his tracks, scratching his neck. “Hey Jimin, can I ask you out again?”
Jimin stops a few steps away. At night, the restaurant’s light makes a side of his face glow, and he opens his mouth. He doesn’t look that excited, and Yoongi worries for a long second but then a smile forms on his lips, and he nods. “Yeah. Yeah, I’d like that a lot, hyung.”
Jimin waits for Yoongi to catch up to him. “Dancing or singing? The date’s on me this time.”
“If we chose dancing, I’d need to have alcohol in my body and prefer to keep my drunken self hidden until some dates later.”
Yoongi thinks of Jimin’s giggles even after he gets home.
True to Jimin’s offer, they meet at a norebang in a week. Same day and hour.
The private room is small, only for two people, so their thighs brush when they sit. Jimin curls away from the touch, dropping his hand to his knees, and Yoongi worries. “Is everything okay?”
Jimin’s smile is enough for his doubt to dissipate. “Yes, hyung. Everything is alright.”
Yoongi decides to believe and not press on it, grabbing the paper with the discounts written on it. “Do you want something to eat? Drink?”
“Do you eat cheap, greasy food, hyung?”
“It’s just the second date. Are we moving on to the forbidden topics already? During the week, we haven’t mentioned them at all.”
They’ve been texting, very tame and polite but still texting. Jimin rolls his eyes. “We’ll see each other sing tonight; we’re moving forward.”
“I think we can slightly touch on the forbidden topics.”
Yoongi laughs to himself. “Well, I can do cheap and greasy food. I don’t hate it.”
“I always thought chefs would be the type to reject and criticize fast food.”
“Just the ones I know I can prepare better.”
They shift closer as they talk, but Jimin pulls away while raising an eyebrow. “Like chicken wings or hamburgers,” Yoongi explains. “I won’t pay for something I do better, but I can’t say no to greasy fried chicken. Oh, and also street food! It's holy, and I don’t mess with it.”
“You don’t like street food?”
“I love it! It’s delicious and requires technique I’ll never own. I respect it.”
“Oh, okay. I was going to judge you,” Jimin admits without looking guilty.
“That’s perfectly fine, Jimin ah.” The younger giggles. “What kind of food do you like?”
“You didn’t seem into Japanese food last time.”
Jimin looks caught as if he didn’t expect Yoongi to notice that he hadn’t finished any of the dishes. “I was! I liked it a lot… but—”
“Will you despise me if I say I prefer fast food over refined food?”
Yoongi leans in once more, and finally, Jimin doesn’t pull away. “Then why do you watch my gourmet recipes?”
Even under the blue lights of the norebang, Yoongi can see Jimin blushing. “You know why!”
“I don’t! You should tell me.”
“You know!" They stare for a long second.
And then, in a whisper, “because of your hands and voice.”
The silence between them breaks when Yoongi laughs, flattered but also enjoying making Jimin flustered. “That sounds dirty. What kind of content were you looking for in a cooking channel?”
“It’s not dirty!”
“It’s calming and distracts me, like any other ASMR channel.” Their eyes meet, and after a scoff, Jimin closes his tiny hands in fists. “Don’t tease me!” The warning comes with a light smack against Yoongi’s arm.
It doesn’t hurt, Yoongi laughs. “Fine, fine! I won’t tease.”
"It's better that you're here for my hands and voice, not my cooking skills. A foodie dating a chef is a bad combination."
"All the foodies I've dated had me cooking meals all time as if they were running a restaurant."
"And who says I won't do that?" Jimin teases.
“You’re so pretty, I don’t think I’d mind.” This time, before he gets another smack, Yoongi forces himself to look away from cute pink cheeks and stare at the paper in his hands. “If you like fast food, we can order anything from here. Something greasy.”
And once the small table in front of them is filled with dishes and glasses, Yoongi and Jimin don't talk about food again.
There are far more exciting things happening, like how Jimin is a great singer. He leaves Yoongi speechless, which throws Jimin into a fit of giggles.
He claps after Yoongi does his best to mimic a balladist, but they can't meet each other eyes while singing romantic lyrics at the top of their lungs. They fail at too many duets and decide they'll have to search for a song that matches them for their next date here.
The place is stuffy, and Yoongi ditches his hoodie after an hour, staying in a loose white tee. Meanwhile, Jimin doesn't remove his oversized jumper but keeps fanning himself with his hand. When Yoongi asks him if he's feeling hot under the clothes, Jimin says he's okay.
He says he'll drink water to cool a bit, and Yoongi doesn't argue with him; he probably forgot to wear a shirt under it. Not only does Jimin drink water, but he also devours his portion of the chicken, which leaves Yoongi strangely pleased even if he didn't prepare them.
And when Jimin plops on his seat after an intense rendition of a trot song, Yoongi squirms closer. “Hey, since we’re already on the forbidden topic date, will we talk about exes now, or is that reserved for the third date?”
“I don’t think there’s anything relevant to say.”
“You already know I haven’t dated in years, so this is all new." Yoongi waits for him to elaborate, and Jimin sighs. "What happened is that I wasn't actively trying to date. Well, I was avoiding it, but I wasn't going to say no to you.”
“Why have you been avoiding dating?”
There's a pause where Jimin won’t meet his eyes, and Yoongi cringes. “Sorry, it’s okay if you don’t want to talk about it yet. That was a bit intrusive.”
“You're curious; it's fine!" Jimin assures him, but he doesn't say a word about it. "On some other date, I'll tell you.”
But on their next date, which happens in the same week because they can’t wait longer, Jimin has different plans.
It’s a Sunday morning, and they’re walking in the park closet to Yoongi's work, drinking coffee, and heading to the Hotel. It's a short date, but worth it.
Yoongi learned Jimin doesn't like coffee and prefers tea with no sugar. He sips from Yoongi's order and grimaces at the taste, but Yoongi finds his expression cute. He's all bundled in a scarf and a coat, and his gloved hand keeps brushing Yoongi's as they walk.
“Hyung, before you go, will you tell me about your channel?” Jimin asks. “You never mention it, and I’ve been dying to know more, but I don’t want to sound like a fan.”
“You are a fan.”
Jimin purses his lips angrily, and Yoongi laughs. “Well, I still have some minutes.”
“It's not a cool story. My friend Jungkook came up with it. He had to create digital content for a class, he was studying something related to communication, and I had just left my previous work, so I agreed. And the channel did better than we expected, so we kept doing it.”
“You weren’t working at the Hotel’s buffet before?”
“No, this is a relatively new job.”
“Was it something very different from it?”
“Yeah, I worked at a very high-end restaurant. You know those where you can’t choose what you eat, and there are only ten tables.”
“There are restaurants like that?”
Yoongi chuckles, envying the ignorance regarding the cooking scene. “A lot. I worked at quite an acclaimed restaurant. Michelin’s stars and everything.”
“Oh,” Jimin nudges at his side. “Have no idea what that is, but it sounds important.”
“Since everyone eats the same nine dishes, we have stations for each. I was there for years and only worked on one dish each night.”
Jimin’s smile falls. “Oh.”
“And I had the revelation while talking to high school friends. I started asking myself why am I doing all this?”
“Why do I have to keep climbing the ladder if I don’t even want to open an inaccessible and unaffordable restaurant? I don’t want to do all that culinary science which I respect, but-”
Jimin stops walking and tilts his head. “What do you want to do, then?”
Yoongi sighs. “It was difficult coming to terms with it after investing so much time in studying and working, but I’m pretty sure that by now, I just want to settle down and cook for my children.”
On cue, some children yell while playing in the park. “Wow,” is all Jimin says.
“Yup, that’s the goal for me.”
And after a moment of hesitation, Jimin walks again, sipping from his tea before beaming at Yoongi. “I like that a lot, hyung. It’s sweet and noble.”
This time Yoongi is the one who stops walking and has to catch up to Jimin, hands brushing again.
Jimin says that now all the weird dishes Yoongi prepares on his channel make sense, and while talking, he lets Yoongi intertwine their fingers together.
When Jimin drops him off at work, Yoongi feels much more confident leaning in and kissing Jimin’s cheek before saying goodbye.
As Yoongi leaves for work, Jimin stays on the street, gripping his tea and blushing from head to toe, giddy like he hasn’t felt in years. The giddiness follows him through the week. When Yoongi sends text messages and when he daydreams about Yoongi’s gummy smile and rough voice.
The giddiness remains when he sees Yoongi waiting for him at a gallery’s entrance for their next date on Tuesday night. Jimin feels like he hasn’t in long— but his usual nervousness regarding dating returns at the end of the date.
“Hey, what about coming over to mine next time?”
Even if Jimin really likes Yoongi, he doesn’t want them to be alone. In his place. Almost as if reading his mind, Yoongi adds. “I don’t want to do anything weird! Just cook for you. Private lessons for the scallions, remember?”
Jimin blinks at his wide sincere eyes.
Yoongi is a serious and careful guy; he has solemn goals with dating; Jimin is sure he’s not lying. And Jimin likes him so much, not just his hands and voice. So he relaxes and plays with the sleeves of his coat. “I thought hyung didn’t like cooking for people he dates.”
“Yeah, I don’t want to be a personal chef, but that doesn't stop cooking from being my love language.”
“In that case, hyung must cook for me.”
“So you’re coming over after work? On my free day?” Yoongi sounds as giddy as Jimin feels, making it easier for Jimin to nod.
On Thursday night, Jimin shows up at Yoongi’s apartment with a blue hoodie and a smile. “Hey, hyung.” His usual shyness stays outside the apartment once Jimin gasps at the entrance. “Your kitchen is huge.” And then, as he removes his sneakers, Jimin’s eyes fall on the counter.
“This is where you record!” He points at the marble, knowing it too well.
“You’re such a fan.”
Jimin won’t pretend he isn’t. “Is it?”
“It is. And you’re right; it’s a big kitchen. The biggest of the building.” Jimin looks around, getting familiar with the fancy apartment.
“When I bought this place, I asked the builders to remove the laundry room to make the kitchen bigger.”
“Really?” Jimin glances at the living room, noticing it’s not as big. He ignores his curiosity about the bedroom.
“Yeah. It’s also the nicest room in the apartment.”
“I remodeled it a while ago,” Yoongi explains, walking to the kitchen table. Jimin follows, eyeing all the elegant details. “I like interior design.”
“Where did they put the laundry room?”
Yoongi’s grimace is adorable. “They crammed it in the bathroom.”
“You’re so silly!”
Jimin giggles, and once he stops next to Yoongi, the man’s intense gaze falls on Jimin, and he answers. “But you like me that way.”
And Jimin can’t lie. “Yes.”
Yoongi leans closer, and Jimin thinks they’re going to kiss, but they don’t; Yoongi only touches Jimin’s cheek.
He caresses it with his thumb before saying. “Go wash your hands; I’ll cook something for you.”
The bathroom is also sleek -not as much as the kitchen- Yoongi’s interest in interior design is apparent. Jimin doesn’t look at himself in the mirror; he knows his blush is bright.
When he returns, Jimin sits on a high stool by the counter, dangling his legs and listening to Yoongi talk as he puts together some extravagant dish for Jimin. His long black hair is in a bun, and his silky black shirt is tight yet loose, making him more handsome than usual.
For the first time, Jimin can see what happens beyond the frame of his favorite channel. Of course, it feels different from the close-up shot of hands under a camera. But the product is as high quality as it always is.
The dish is different from anything Jimin has seen before.
“Is this what you made at your old job each night?” Jimin blinks innocently, only for Yoongi to squeeze his nape.
“You’re a brat. Do you know that?”
Unable to argue, Jimin beams. “Thank you for the meal, hyung!” But before he can dig into it, Yoongi pushes the dish away.
“Is that how you say thank you?” Yoongi supports himself on the counter, tipping close one more time, and by now, Jimin should be used to how straightforward he is, but still, Jimin’s eyes widen. His expression pulls a dry chuckle out of Yoongi. “Sorry. You look scared.”
But Jimin doesn’t let him finish that thought, leaning in and pressing his lips against Yoongi’s in the softest peck. “Thank you for the meal, hyung,” he whispers while their lips still brush together. And he escapes without watching Yoongi react, taking a bite of the food.
Jimin’s heart beats fast, and his lips are tingly, but the taste distracts him. Jimin doesn’t know what ingredient makes the dish so delicious; maybe it’s the memory of Yoongi’s lips or how the elder presses his forehead to Jimin’s shoulder in a weak attempt at hiding his blush.
Lucky for Jimin, the portion is small, and he can eat without feeling guilty. After kissing the top of Jimin’s head, Yoongi digs into it, explaining each ingredient. They share another peck and a quick hug before Jimin has to go, and he goes to bed, unable to fight his smile.
From then on, their dates move to Yoongi’s apartment. Twice or even thrice a week, Yoongi slides a nicer dish on the countertop for Jimin. Vegetables are arranged in strange ways, with lots of leaves that Jimin believes to be inedible, and everything is tastier than the previous.
Jimin says thank you the same way every time until Yoongi stops blushing. He tries to hold Jimin longer when saying goodbye, hugging his middle, but Jimin manages to squirm away, reminding him he has work in the morning.
Jimin thinks Yoongi doesn’t find anything wrong with it.
They keep seeing each other and texting and saying, ‘I like you’ and ‘I miss you,’ and Jimin feels like he can do this again. He likes doing this with Yoongi and feeling so warm in his chest. Eventually, it’ll get complicated like dating always does, but Jimin enjoys it now.
But soon, their kissing becomes more often, and Yoongi always tries to deepen it. He’s respectful, though, and doesn’t say anything when Jimin giggles out of it. His hands also wander to Jimin’s waist, and as long as they don’t move, Jimin appreciates how nice they feel.
And then, Yoongi stops sliding the dishes over the marble counter and instead puts them on the coffee table. The dates continue, and the pair move from the kitchen into the living room to eat while watching a movie on the TV or just to be more comfortable or closer to each other.
By the end of the night, paired with too many bottles of soju, Jimin is curled up against Yoongi, and Yoongi keeps drifting closer. Jimin is conflicted in a way he hasn’t felt before, a faint reminder of why he stopped dating and how nervous moments like this can get for him.
While he wants to hold Yoongi close, he doesn’t wish for Yoongi to feel him up. “Hey,” Yoongi murmurs while Jimin focuses on the TV.
And then, the dreaded question comes. “Why don’t you ever want to kiss me?”
Jimin stares at him, at his beautiful, sincere eyes.
“We kiss,” he murmurs.
Yoongi nods slowly. “Yes, pecks. But I want to kiss you.” A pause where Yoongi scratches his neck. “You don’t like kissing?”
“I do!” Jimin does. “It’s just been a while.”
“You need more time? You know you can tell me if you don’t like kissing.”
“I think it’s something we should talk about if we want our—”
Jimin interrupts him by pressing their lips together. He can kiss Yoongi. He likes kissing Yoongi, likes when he touches Jimin’s face, and the way he takes the lead. And even if surprised, Yoongi kisses him back.
Jimin tumbles on top of Yoongi, and to keep him in place, Yoongi holds his middle. Immediately, Jimin tenses, not because he doesn’t like his touch but because he doesn’t want him to feel his body. Thankfully, he doesn’t repeat the action, settling on his hips instead.
His grip is tight, and when he’s not touching his middle, Jimin gets lost in the slide of their lips.
It’s Jimin who pulls away, breathing close to Yoongi’s face. “I like kissing,” he assures him. Yoongi nods, staring at Jimin’s lips before lowering his hands and squeezing.
And that’s not bad at all. The sound that leaves Jimin’s mouth can’t be helped, but it's muffled by Yoongi’s lips against his one more time. It’s just a peck, then another on Jimin’s jaw and another under his ear before whispering, “and more than kissing?”
“It’s been a while.”
Jimin feels Yoongi’s smile. “We don’t need to do anything right now. I just want to know if this is going to happen eventually.”
Their eyes meet, and Yoongi looks so open, so understanding, and in the weeks they’ve been going out, Jimin knows he’s patient and kind.
And maybe that’s why he speaks. “It’s not like I don’t want to do anything ever.”
Jimin looks away, focusing on Yoongi’s sweater. “We could do other things.”
“Like what? What would make you feel good?” Yoongi’s hands have settled on Jimin’s hips again.
Jimin gives it a long thought before whispering against Yoongi’s ear. “I could put hyung in my mouth.”
“Would that make you feel good?” Yoongi wonders.
Jimin nods quickly. But for some reason, Yoongi can’t bring himself to make a move.
“Does hyung want to?” Jimin presses.
“I want to talk.”
Jimin blinks, surprised at having read the room wrong. “Talk?”
“Yeah.” Yoongi lowers the volume of the series playing on the TV. “What other things do you like? I don’t want to do something you don’t like.”
“We’re talking about that right now?”
Jimin awkwardly laughs, but Yoongi is serious. “We’ve been dating for a while, right? I know your thoughts on politics, social stuff, work, and dunno, your music taste, but we haven’t talked about this yet.” They’re quiet, and then Yoongi laughs. “So, what do you like in bed?”
Conversations like this are embarrassing but necessary, and Jimin’s loud sigh means he understands. “I like— I like being in control.”
“You do?” Yoongi raises an eyebrow, having a hard time believing that.
Jimin looks away. “Well, that’s how I had sex with my exes.”
“Was it good sex?”
“Yes,” Jimin frowns. “I like pleasuring my partner.”
“I also like that,” Yoongi admits, and silence settles between them. “But I think we’re talking about different ways of pleasuring someone.”
Jimin hides behind his hands, not shyly but in frustration.
“This is why I stopped dating.”
“Intimacy is always weird.” He seems upset and tired, in a way Yoongi hasn’t seen before, even when Jimin complained about work or was angry at a lazy co-worker. “I really like you and want to keep seeing you—”
Here comes the ‘but.’
“But I don’t like when other people touch me. Not because I don’t like sex; I like having sex. I have a stupidly high sex drive and touch myself a lot.” Yoongi nods, flustered at the quick rant. “But I don’t want others touching me, so I always take the lead with other people.”
“But since I was always in control, my partners expected me to be more dominant? You know, call them names or spank them or be always the one with the initiative. And I understand because whenever they’d take the initiative, I’d put too many restrictions on the touching.”
“And I don’t know. I didn’t like that dominant role! I couldn’t do it! So nothing works for me!”
Seeing him so agitated worries Yoongi, and he needs to have a solution for Jimin immediately, something to put him at ease. “So you don’t actually like being in control.”
Jimin falls quiet for a moment before admitting, “I really like pleasuring my partner, but it’s exhausting always taking the lead, and it’s not enjoyable. But I can’t also let the other person take the lead.”
“I can’t! I don’t like being that vulnerable.”
“Being naked and splayed under someone and letting them see and touch anything they want.”
“Isn’t vulnerability and trust part of being intimate with someone?”
Jimin looks weary, gesturing around, trying to come up with the right words. “I’m not attractive enough for that.”
And Yoongi’s mouth falls open at the unexpected twist. “Jimin, you’re very attractive.”
Jimin doesn’t argue with him but doesn’t seem to agree. “What I mean is that I’m too big for those things.”
Jimin sucks on his lower lip, clearly annoyed at the conversation.
“You know, being under someone, on display for them to touch and do whatever they want, makes you feel vulnerable and small.”
“Yeah, I guess.”
“I like feeling that way, but I’m not very small.”
“You’re not small? With those tiny hands and your little face,” Yoongi smiles.
“You mean my chubby fingers and bloated face.”
And the smile wipes off Yoongi’s face, waiting for Jimin to say he’s joking, but he doesn’t. “You’re serious right now?” Jimin glances away. “Is that why you eat so little?”
His lovely features turn sharp. “I eat! Moderately.”
“It’s not restrictively. It’s just taking care of myself and knowing that with my metabolism and body type, I have to eat less.”
Yoongi tilts his head, somewhat annoyed too. Not at Jimin but at the things coming out of his mouth. “You don’t have to do that.”
“That’s easy to say when you’re so skinny,” Jimin says under his breath, but loud enough.
Yoongi doesn’t take his anger the wrong way; weight is a touchy subject, and he should be more mindful. “Jimin, I like your body.”
And the answer is quick and definitive. “I don’t.”
Yoongi thinks of Jimin grimacing when Yoongi calls him beautiful, his oversized clothes that hide his figure, and how he avoids hands on his waist. Small moments like him pulling away when their thighs are together suddenly make sense when Yoongi’s legs are so slim in comparison.
Jimin has the sexiest thighs, but Yoongi doesn’t think he should say that aloud. “Well, that’s your opinion. It doesn’t make me not like it.”
They don’t say a word, and Jimin searches for Yoongi's hands, playing with his fingers until he sighs. “We can do it without undressing.”
Yoongi hums as Jimin adds, “and with the lights off.” Yoongi keeps humming, drawing circles on Jimin’s palm. “And without touching my tummy.”
“That sounds a bit complicated; things might end up going inside places they shouldn’t.”
“What?” At least he makes Jimin laugh again.
“It’s a hassle! I don’t want you to force yourself to do stuff to please me.”
“I’m not forcing it! I love your hands; I like them on me, but not in this area—” he gestures at his chest, middle, and legs.
“We can have phone sex,” Yoongi suggests, and it makes Jimin laugh more.
Their eyes meet when the laughter dies down, and Yoongi reaches out and touches his face softly. “Is this the kind of situation where I have to call you beautiful until you believe it? Because I can do that. I’m very consistent. You know, I prepared the same dish for years.”
“Until you got tired and quit?” Before Yoongi can refute Jimin’s answer, Jimin speaks again. “You don’t need to worry about that. I look after myself. I work out. Eventually, I’ll look how I want to, and I’ll like my looks again.”
Yoongi decides to lose this battle, and he nods.
“What about intimacy? I want it, but not with all that trouble.”
“Usually, this is the deal breaker, but I don’t—”
“I don’t want to end things.” Yoongi’s interruption makes Jimin smile. “So we’ll make it work?” For now, the hopeful glint in Jimin’s eyes is enough for Yoongi.
When Jimin returns home, he buries his face in his pillow, unable to believe he said all that to Yoongi. In a way, he’s relieved that they talked about it, but deep down, he’s dreading the possible outcome. Yoongi might change his mind about Jimin, and Jimin is already attached.
But Yoongi’s feelings for Jimin don’t seem to falter. He still sends good morning texts and updates Jimin on his day as if that night’s conversation had never happened, as if he didn’t think Jimin had to fix his stuff before dating him like most of his ex-partners believed.
But insecurity gets the best of Jimin, as it always does. Three days later, Jimin shows up announced at Yoongi’s work late at night, and Yoongi is surprised to see him. He says goodbye to his co-workers and hurries to Jimin’s side.
“Hey, you didn’t tell me you were coming over.”
When Yoongi reaches him, Jimin brings his hands to Yoongi’s chest and kisses him on the lips, only for a smile to form on Yoongi’s face, looking bright in the night. “What happened?”
“Do you still like me, hyung?”
“You came all the way here to ask that?”
“It’s not that far.”
Gently, Yoongi pets his hair. “You could have texted.”
“I thought that if you’d see me in person, I would convince you to still like me.”
“You don’t need to convince me of anything, Jimin. Of course, I like you,” Yoongi squeezes his neck before whispering, “come here.”
Yoongi hugs him tightly, and Jimin needs that so badly that he doesn’t feel tense about his hands holding his soft sides. It’s Yoongi who pulls away. “Sorry, is that okay?”
“Yeah,” Jimin clutches Yoongi’s middle, hiding against his neck. “I like being close to you.”
“What makes you think I’ll stop liking you?”
Jimin shrugs. “I don't know. I’m already complicating things between us, and you know people say that we should love ourselves before others.”
“Mmh. Do you think you’re not ready to date? Do you think time alone is the best for you?”
“I don’t want to be alone. I want to be with you,” Jimin murmurs. “Most times, I think I’d give up, but I really, really like you.”
Yoongi kisses his cheek before adding strength to his hold on Jimin. “Then you’re going to be with me because I really, really like you too.”
Jimin doesn’t doubt that Yoongi likes him, which must be a good sign because usually, Jimin wouldn't believe it. It’s a motivation for Jimin to try. But he can't unsee how the way Yoongi watches him has changed ever since they've had that talk.
It's not pity, but it's wary.
He’s careful about mentioning food again. And when they’re leaving the movies on their weekend date and Jimin says he’s craving ramyeon, Yoongi looks startled, unsure of what to do or say. Jimin rolls his eyes. “Stop acting weird! I told you I eat like a normal person!”
Yoongi controls his expression quickly, putting on a calm facade. “Come on, I know a nice place nearby.” But then, when they arrive, Jimin asks the waiter to remove the noodles from his order, and Yoongi’s cautiousness is back. “You don’t eat noodles?”
“Not this late at night.”
“What about the fried chicken on our second date? That was late at night.”
“I have three cheat meals a week, and I was using them on our dates.”
“You’re on a diet,” Yoongi guesses.
“It’s not a diet, just eating more healthily. I like fast food, but I can’t have it often.”
And they don’t talk about food again.
For the next hour, they get to forget the topic hovering over them, but Jimin can never escape it. “You’re full?” Yoongi asks, signaling the remains of food on Jimin’s dish.
“Yes. I had a snack earlier. I just wanted to fulfill my craving.”
“What snack did you have?”
“Fruit and yogurt.” Yoongi blinks, and Jimin knows he wants to say something and can even hear the words, but Yoongi remains quiet.
What he does is push his bowl forward. “Do you want to try mine?”
“Hyung, please, don’t be weird about this.”
“I'm not," Yoongi promises. "I want to be supportive, but I have to understand— Can I ask something? About this?”
“How do you think you have to look for you to like your body?”
Jimin taps his fingers against the table. “I think I looked good in high school.”
“Back then, I didn’t think I looked good, but lately, when I stumbled upon my pictures from that time, I liked it.”
It’s as if Jimin can see the many thoughts running through Yoongi’s head. “In high school?”
“But you were a teenager. You have an adult's body now.”
“I know, but it was my fault that I couldn't keep that size. I stopped taking care of myself at University. My habits were terrible with all my courses and activities, and I lived off coffee and sweets. And then I stopped dancing, which made me gain even more weight.”
From everything Jimin is saying, Yoongi picks up what hurts Jimin the most. “Why did you stop dancing?”
It’s still painful to say, “my instructor told me the steps wouldn’t look good unless I lost weight.”
“Yeah, you’re right with that one. It was bullshit.”
Yoongi focuses on his soup for a second before saying, “yet you told me you haven’t danced in a while either. On our first date." A nod. "Do you ever want to go to a dance class again? That instructor won't be there.”
And the idea alone is frightening. “No. I can’t.”
“The same reason I can’t go to the gym and work out at home; I feel like people watch and judge me as if they know I shouldn’t be there. I could go when I feel comfortable in my body.”
Even if he’s cautious, Yoongi still tries to understand. “And if I go with you?”
“I’m an okay dancer, but I have trouble memorizing steps. So, anyone there would probably be more focused on my messing up everything than you.”
The wariness in the air somehow travels to Jimin. “Why are you doing this, hyung?”
“‘Cause I’m your boyfriend. Isn’t that what I do?”
Jimin blushes, enjoying hearing that word for the first time. It's a pleasing surprise. "For your boyfriend that gives you nothing in return?"
And Yoongi reaches for his hand across the table. "For my boyfriend who sends me reminders to wear a scarf and organizes cute dates."
"That's the bare minimum."
"The bare minimum?" Yoongi raises his voice so loud that other customers turn to them, so he shyly leans closer. "I know you work corporate, but making a calendar where you put places we've visited and that you think I'd like isn't the bare minimum."
"I mean, considering all the couple stuff I'm depriving you of, a calendar is the least I could do."
"It's color-coded, Jimin."
"I make calendars for everything," Jimin argues. "That's just me being obsessive over stuff."
"Color-coded." It's Yoongi's sole argument.
"You're so silly," Jimin mumbles, but he's smiling. He likes knowing his weak attempts at making a relationship work are appreciated.
"Go onto the calendar and add 'dance classes with hyung' in the pale yellow square. Yellow is Jimin, right? Anyway, You have my work schedule."
"I'm not going with you," Jimin scoffs, even though he pulls out his phone and opens his calendar app.
"No, that'd be embarrassing. I don't want you watching me dance and being corny like you always are."
"Why not? You've watched me cook even before we met!"
"That's different! You post yourself online for everyone to see. Dancing is something I have to face on my own."
"You're not taking me with you?" Yoongi pouts.
"But you're going," Yoongi says, tilting his head and setting Jimin up, driving him to a corner.
"I don't know, hyung."
Yoongi taps Jimin's phone, trying to see the screen. "Look, there's a perfect slot for dancing classes when I have recording hours with Jungkook. I don't even have to see you dancing, but if I'm making videos for you, you could do that for me."
"How do you even come up with these negotiations? You're such a liar! You're not making videos for me!"
Yoongi's puppy eyes make Jimin's heart beat fast. "I am! You're my favorite subscriber."
They stare until Jimin gives up. "I can't promise anything, but I'll try."
Jimin doesn't go to dancing classes in the following weeks, but Yoongi doesn't press. While he thinks dancing would help Jimin, he can't force Jimin to go. It has to be something that he decides to do on his own.
Plus, there are other ways Yoongi can take care of Jimin.
The first one is treating their relationship the same as before. Jimin called Yoongi out on acting weird, and so now Yoongi tries to act nonchalant, even if he knows about Jimin's issues with his body. He hugs Jimin and calls him beautiful whenever he feels like it.
Jimin doesn't flinch at the compliments, but Yoongi can tell he doesn't rejoice in them either. He eases into the hugs with time, not minding Yoongi's hands on his waist or traveling down his back, and they even cuddle in Yoongi's bed, kissing lazily until Jimin says it's enough.
But a step forward doesn’t mean everything is suddenly better. Jimin dislikes when Yoongi lies on his chest or watches him from below. He’s brave and explains that he doesn’t want Yoongi to see him from an unflattering angle.
Yoongi thinks all of Jimin’s angles are flattering.
He doesn’t hide his attraction, and Jimin notices, “why are you looking at me like that?” Jimin asks as he washes the dishes after having lunch together.
“Like what?” Yoongi asks from the kitchen stool.
“I like you. Of course, I’m going to look at you like this.”
“I’m doing the dishes.” As if that will change Yoongi’s mind.
“You don’t think you look sexy right now?”
“Sexy?” Jimin laughs in disbelief, but after a second, he murmurs something. “I think I look nice. It’s a nice day.”
It’s odd how happy that comment makes Yoongi. “Yeah?”
“I have nice days,” Jimin admits.
“You do? Nice days how?”
“Days where I like what I see in the mirror. This is my favorite sweater, and I like how these jeans look on me.”
“They are very nice jeans,” Yoongi shamelessly adds, and his appreciative tone has Jimin giggling.
“I know I can look better than this, but it’s not as if I hate it every day. Nice days are dangerous, though, I feel like I look good but then I dunno; I take photos with friends and realize the mirror is lying to me and that my friends have smaller frames in comparison.”
“And even if I thought I looked lean, it was just my perception when I was alone in my house. And as easy as that, nice days turn into bad days. That’s why I like wearing dark colors. Black makes you look leaner in photos.”
“Your calendars are filled with bright colors.”
“I like those, but they wouldn’t suit me.”
“Mmh. I think you’d be sexy anyway, so I’m not a fair judge.”
Jimin smiles, receiving the compliment without arguing, and Yoongi is relieved. On days like these, Jimin allows their kissing to turn slightly more heated than usual.
And eventually, Yoongi takes on the no-undressing offer. There's no right way of being close, and they both want it. Jimin takes the lead like it's more comfortable for him, but when Yoongi gets his hands on him, he lets himself 'be small.'
It's brief but stays in Yoongi's mind.
Especially when, afterward, Jimin confesses that he went to dancing classes.
"You didn't tell me," Yoongi murmurs, trailing his fingers up and down Jimin's arm.
"I wanted to see if I liked it first before telling you. I thought it would be disappointing for you if I'd quit."
"It wouldn't be," Yoongi assures him. "I'm happy that you tried it out."
"And it was fun. Everyone's nice," Jimin whispers. "I'm doing hip hop, which isn't what I did when I was younger. I'm not ready for a contemporary class."
"That's fine. As long as you enjoy it."
Their eyes meet. "I like it. I like this too." Being in Yoongi's bed after holding each other close, still attached from the proximity and intimacy.
"I like it too," and after the confession, Yoongi takes a deep breath, preparing to touch something more delicate.
"Was it like you'd thought it'd be?"
Jimin hides against Yoongi's neck. He's been acting bashful after it, whispering and blushing even when they weren't discussing sex. "I think about doing a lot of things with you."
Another deep breath and a kiss on the temple. "Me too."
"But when I'm here with you, I can't bring myself to do anything."
"Because I'm here, in my body and not my head." Yoongi opts for staying quiet and giving Jimin the necessary pause to gather his thoughts. "And yet, I still want to be close to you."
"We could try those things you think of doing, I guess," Yoongi whispers. "Just like you tried with the classes. If you don't like it, we stop and don't do it again, but we can try. We should try getting them out of your head."
Jimin nods slowly. "Yes, that sounds good."
But it turns out not to be such a good idea.
Both are eager to get their hands on each other next time they’re alone. On Yoongi’s free day, Jimin visits him after work, and they head straight to the bedroom, which quickly ends with Jimin on his back and Yoongi on top of him.
A hand on his waist and supporting himself on his other arm, and Jimin isn’t tense; his arms around Yoongi’s neck and his legs tangled with Yoongi’s. Everything seems to be heading somewhere pleasant until Yoongi tries to kiss Jimin’s neck.
Just a touch puts him on edge.
Jimin pulls away, shaking his head. “Not there.”
“Sorry,” Yoongi whispers, trying not to ruin the moment.
And Jimin tries too. They both want things to work. “It’s okay. It feels odd, but,” Jimin presses his lips and slides them against Yoongi’s neck. “This is better.”
And while Yoongi remembers a critical but now faint conversation, with Jimin explaining he used to take the lead to avoid getting touched, Yoongi can’t bring himself to put a pause. Jimin’s lips on his neck feel good, and his small hands down Yoongi’s chest feel even better.
His thighs around Yoongi’s hips are perfect, and when their lips meet again, and Yoongi grips those thighs, he can feel himself growing hard. He’s wanted Jimin for so long, and his following words, a whisper against his ear, turn Yoongi on even more. “Can I use my mouth on you?”
Yoongi wants to say yes, but the faint conversation from months ago returns. He remembers Jimin offering to do the same before telling Yoongi how he really felt— “Are you saying that because I’m hard?”
Jimin shakes his head and grips the collar of Yoongi’s shirt. “I want to.”
“Don’t you want to? I want to make you feel good.”
Jimin’s eyes have a precious glint, his lips are wet, and he looks so perfect under Yoongi, but he can’t say yes. “I don’t know. I’m conflicted.”
Before Jimin can answer, Yoongi pulls away and plops on the bed next to him.
Their shoulders brush as they both stare at the ceiling. “Why are you conflicted?” Jimin asks.
“While I want to do that with you, I also don’t want you to do something and then regret it.”
Silence and a white ceiling. “It was your idea to do more of this. I don’t get it.”
“I know it was, but just like you can’t bring yourself to do stuff you think of doing, I guess l feel like it’s not flowing naturally. Like you’re pushing yourself instead of being ready.”
“Well, I disagree with that. I’m ready.”
He sits up, staring at Yoongi.
He’s so overwhelmed he doesn’t seem to mind that Yoongi is watching from below— ‘an unflattering angle’ in his opinion. “I am.”
“When I said I had to love myself first and all that bullshit, you just asked me if I was ready to date, and I said yes, and you believed me.”
“So what’s different now?”
“That I don’t believe you're ready for more.” Jimin’s jaw drops, staring at him in disbelief. And he was right. Nice days are dangerous; they can turn bad so quickly. Before Jimin can stand up, Yoongi tugs at his wrist. “No, no, Jimin. Wait there.”
“You’re not storming off like that,” Yoongi says.
“I’m just going to the bathroom.”
And Jimin looks tired, and maybe Yoongi should let him, but he can’t. “Can we talk first? I don’t think we should leave the conversation here.”
“Talk about what, hyung?”
“Why are you upset?”
“I’m not upset. I'm confused: you tell me you want me, but then you don’t want me.”
“I want you, but it’s not the right time.” Jimin looks away, and Yoongi tugs harder, squeezing his wrist. “Come on, you know I want you. You know I’m attracted to you. I think you're beautiful.”
“Now you’re just saying that to make me feel better.”
“Jimin, you know what I think of you. You know I think you’re beautiful.”
“Yeah, I’m sure you do, hyung.”
And the tiredness in his gaze and posture somehow spans to Yoongi too, and he lets go of Jimin’s wrist.
“Fine,” Yoongi puts distance between them. “Don’t believe me.”
“You don’t believe me when I say I’m ready to try something you suggested, so why would I believe you?”
And Yoongi clenches his jaw. “You don’t believe what I’ve been telling you since our first date? For months?”
“Do you think I’m always lying when I say you look good? When say I want you?”
“You’re dating me; you have to say those things.”
“And why do you think I’m dating you, Jimin? Pity?” Jimin keeps quiet. “You think I’d date someone I pity? Someone I’m not head over heels for?”
Jimin just shrugs.
“Huh. I honestly don’t understand why you would think so lowly of me. Do you believe me to be that kind of person? That I think badly of you and date you regardless? That I’m not attracted to you and don’t love you but want to have sex with you regardless?”
And Jimin’s eyes widen at the word slip, but Yoongi keeps going. “I only say good things about you, Jimin. I only care about you. Maybe I care too much and make things weird; maybe I’m too careful, and that’s not helpful, but I only do it because I think highly of you.”
“I admire the work you do, the kind of person and partner you are, and yet it’s like I’m not appreciated for any of that, and on top, you want to imply these things about me. I’m sorry I confuse you; I’m sorry I don’t know how to handle things better. I’ll try to do better.”
“But don’t imply I’m a liar or a bad person that dates someone they don't love.” Jimin’s heart drops at the disappointment and exhaustion in Yoongi’s voice. He’s been prudent and comprehensive with Jimin through all stages of the relationship, and he must get tired at no process.
“Hyung.” Yoongi won’t look at him and Jimin’s eyes water, thinking that Yoongi will give up on him and realize Jimin isn’t as good as he thinks he is and will leave him. “Hyung, I’m sorry I said you don’t want me and that I don’t believe you when you said you do.”
“I’m sorry I implied that you’d lie about that. You’re not a liar. You’re—” When Jimin sniffles, Yoongi finally turns to him, and his expression twists into a pained one. “You’re so good to me, hyung.”
“Don’t cry, oh God.”
“Sorry,” Jimin rubs his eyes. “I’ll stop.”
“No, no, don’t stop; you can cry if you want,” Yoongi corrects himself. And they’re a mess, and Jimin has to laugh because they still shift closer until Jimin can pull Yoongi into a hug. But the sound stops when Yoongi whispers, “I’m sorry, I just don’t know what to do.”
“I know no one is perfect, but I’ve never dated someone with these issues and—”
“It’s okay,” Jimin assures him. “It’s okay. You do so much, and you were right; I was pushing myself because I think you deserve something nice from this relationship other than worrying over me.”
“But when you stopped me, my brain made me think you didn’t want me at all, and it’s my fault.”
“It is.” Jimin takes a deep breath. “I appreciate everything you do, and I love you too.” Their teary eyes meet, and they laugh. “What a terrible way of confessing that.”
Jimin stays over at Yoongi’s apartment that night. They cuddle and share only soft kisses, and they have breakfast together in the morning. Jimin slices fruit and eats every portion of rolled omelette Yoongi puts in front of him. As well as drinking his tea in silence.
They hug before Jimin leaves for work, and even if his breakfast makes him feel full, Jimin feels somehow weak. It’s a feeling that he drags with him through the week. Yoongi notices the dry messages, but he gives Jimin space.
Jimin also gives his boyfriend space.
Still, his heart swells when Yoongi sends a photo of Jungkook setting up the cameras in Yoongi’s kitchen. Yoongi adds a small message, ‘your favorite show is back.’
And Jimin shows his enthusiasm with many emojis. Then, missing his boyfriend so much, Jimin snaps a quick selfie.
He types a corny, ‘your favorite boy.’
And Yoongi types and deletes, only to settle for a ‘so cute’ in the end. And then an ‘I miss you.’
Jimin thinks he must have typed ‘beautiful’ but deleted it after their last argument. Jimin locks his phone and enters the bathroom.
Before undressing for a shower, Jimin stares at his reflection.
It’s not fair for Yoongi that Jimin doesn’t believe him when he tries so hard. It’s not fair for Jimin either that he doesn’t let Yoongi’s words hold him the way the elder wants them to. They don’t deserve that.
Later that day, when Jimin shows up at Yoongi’s apartment, Jungkook opens the door. “Oh, hi,” Jimin bows.
“The boyfriend. Come in; we’re still filming.” Jimin perks, and Jungkook laughs. “Is it the boyfriend or the fan?”
“Jimin?” Yoongi’s voice gives Jimin tingles everywhere.
Jimin removes his sneakers and enters the apartment, finding Yoongi in the kitchen, preparing something with corn. His hair is half up and down, but the best detail is the smile on his face. “I didn’t notice how late it’s gotten.”
They stare at each other.
“You can properly say hi; the frame only shows the counter,” Jungkook says, focusing on the camera and not their heart eyes.
Immediately, Jimin skips inside the kitchen to kiss Yoongi’s lips. Yoongi brings his hand to the small of Jimin's back and doesn’t let him pull away.
Yoongi kisses his temple before whispering against it, only for Jimin to listen. “Those leggings suit you.”
“I was in dance class earlier.”
“Do you want to change into something more comfortable? You can shower.”
“No, I want to see you finish— whatever that is.”
“It’s a fancy baby corn pureé,” Jungkook speaks, and Jimin remembers they’re not alone.
He smiles and goes to Jungkook’s side. “Looks yummy.”
“The pureé is just the bed of the dish. It’s baby corn in three different textures, so over the pureé, I’m pouring corn foam.”
“And I’m decorating it with roasted corn slices. But before that, black truffle to make it more intense,” Yoongi is showing off, but Jungkook and Jimin are lost.
Sitting on a kitchen’s high stool, watching Yoongi create something special with his hands, puts Jimin at ease.
As Jungkook finishes doing the detail shots of the final product, Yoongi stands behind Jimin, kneading the tense muscles from his shoulder. “Are you going to eat some of it?”
“Since you prepared it.” Yoongi hums before kissing the top of Jimin’s head. “Plus, it looks good.”
And it tastes even better than it looks. “You have to grab the three textures,” Yoongi reminds him.
Yoongi and Jimin sit close as Jungkook packs the camera and microphones. Yoongi is beaming while watching him eat, and after a large spoonful, Jimin glances at him.
“I texted a nutritionist earlier, and we have a video call at night.”
Jungkook keeps dismantling his tripod as if Jimin hasn’t said something that stuck Yoongi. “You did?”
Jimin nods, taking another bite. “I got the contact from someone in the dance class.”
“Would you accompany me? I don’t know why it’s so scary.” That’s a lie. “Well, I know why it’s scary, so it would be best if you’re there.”
“If that’s what you want, I’ll be there.”
“Thank you.” They don’t say another word, only hold hands across the marble counter.
Yoongi is stiff during the video call with the nutritionist. Jimin informs her that his boyfriend is sitting across from him since he’s nervous, and while she says it’s okay, she suggests talking privately at the end of the call if Jimin is comfortable with that and less scared.
Jimin is brave, and after answering most of her questions about habits, he heads to Yoongi's bedroom for a one-on-one conversation. Yoongi is not as brave as him, and his leg bounces while waiting for Jimin to return to the living room.
He plops next to Yoongi on the couch.
“Do you want to tell me what you talked about, or would you rather keep it to yourself?” Yoongi asks, unsure of what to think of Jimin’s expression.
“She suggested also going to therapy.”
Nothing surprising. “She gave you a contact?”
“Do you want to call them now?”
Jimin shakes his head. “Tomorrow?” Yoongi tries, understanding it’s a difficult step to take. He needs a few more days to do it, but eventually, he brings himself to it. Yoongi doesn’t join him in the therapy session. But he does go to pick him up from the office.
When Jimin sees him waiting outside, he rushes to him, and Yoongi’s heart quickens. He only feels affection when Jimin hugs his middle. “How did it go?”
“It was fine. Can we get something to eat? I skipped lunch because I was nervous.”
Yoongi pets his hair. “Of course, we can.”
“What do you want to eat?”
They walk down the street until they find a barbecue. It’s a tiny cozy place, and they sit on the same side of the table, so their bodies touch when sitting on the floor. Yoongi is in charge of ordering and preparing the meat on the grill.
They don’t talk about the session until Yoongi fills Jimin’s dish with slices of meat. “We talked about you, how we met, and how long we’ve been dating. I told her I used to watch your videos while eating because I really liked your voice.”
“And my hands,” Yoongi adds.
It earns him a glare. “I omitted that part. I just met her and didn’t want her to know I’m a horny mess.” Embarrassed at his blunt words, Jimin tries to steal the grill tongs from Yoongi's hand, but Yoongi covers Jimin's tiny hand and reclaims the accessory while snorting.
“She said I probably watched the videos to have something else to think about while I ate instead of focusing on food.”
A pout forms on Yoongi's lips. “That’s a bad thing, isn’t it?”
“Well, the nutritionist said I must focus on what I eat. No distractions.”
“My videos suck.”
His whiney tone makes Jimin laugh. “Hyung! They don't suck! If I hadn't seen your videos, I wouldn’t have talked to you that night at the Hotel. I used them to make eating easier, but eating should be easy even without them.”
“Well, at least you see the bright side of things.”
“She said that now that I have you in person, I should eat my restricted meals with you.” It’s the first time Jimin uses that word to describe his habits. “That way, my brain relates eating to a happy moment.”
“Well, I love food, so we can eat all the time.”
“Of course you do.”
“If you have to focus on food, I know something we can do. Did you know my mom used to make me guess what ingredients were used in meals? So I had to taste it and find the flavor.”
“Really? You never told me that.”
“Yeah.” And Yoongi starts telling Jimin about it.
While laughing and telling each other about their childhood memories, discovering something new even after months of dating, they’re just like any other couple in the restaurant. The people chatting at the other restaurant tables must have their issues, too; it’s life.
Nothing changes right away, and it's fine. Yoongi knows it’s a long process so some weeks later, Yoongi is surprised when Hoseok sends him a photo of Jimin in a bakery. “Coffee break at work and he wanted chocolate cake.”
It’s just chocolate cake but Yoongi is so happy.
When Jimin comes over on the weekend, he finds that Yoongi has prepared cake. The apartment smells sweet. “What’s all this?” Jimin glances at the too many cakes for two people lined up on the counter. “You got a side job baking cakes?”
“No,” Yoongi chuckles nervously.
“Just felt like baking something sweet instead of the usual. You can take one home and take slices to the office.”
Jimin stares warily at him, but he accepts the offer. Jimin knows that Yoongi tries too hard and makes things weird sometimes, but it's because he cares.
Things move as usual; there’s no significant change for more time, just tiny details: Jimin eating bread during breakfast or finishing his portions when they go out. He doesn’t always do it, and sometimes he doesn’t want to eat at all, but Yoongi doesn’t press. He needs time.
The one change that gives Yoongi whiplash happens when seasons pass by and summer arrives. They’ve been dating for over six months, and Jimin suddenly decides to start his morning by sending Yoongi mirror photos, updating him on what he’s wearing to the office. A new development.
If he didn’t like his looks, he wouldn’t send them, so Yoongi treasures every picture. And as the temperature rises, Jimin complains about the heat.
“You’re always wearing jeans and huge shirts, baby. Sure, they aren’t coats and sweaters, but those aren’t summer clothes either.”
Only when he says it aloud, Yoongi comprehends why Jimin wears clothes that cover him even in summer. And he instantly regrets his words, but Jimin’s reaction is calm. “You’re right, hyung. I should buy a new pair of shorts. I have old ones, but I don’t think they fit anymore.”
“Plus, I don’t like their style anymore. I stopped wearing shorts a long time ago.” Yoongi wants to apologize, but Jimin continues. “I should also get tank tops. I stopped wearing those too because I didn’t like how my arms looked, but it’s so hot!”
Yoongi won’t make it a big deal, so he doesn’t apologize about bringing the topic up nor says he’s proud of Jimin’s serene reaction. Instead, he drags Jimin to his feet and suggests grabbing some ice cream. Lying in despair inside the apartment won't help with the heat.
That weekend, Yoongi is on a smoking break with his coworkers; he doesn’t smoke, but he won’t refuse the opportunity to leave the kitchen for a while. He’s hearing his coworkers talk about how much more they still have to get ready for the night when he gets a text message.
Two photos from Jimin and a question. “Which one should I buy?”
It’s Jimin inside a dressing room, trying on two different outfits. In the first picture, he's wearing a summery white button-up with beige shorts that reach over his knees. The material looks nice.
In the second picture, he’s wearing a light blue shirt with tiny blue shorts. Both shirts are long-sleeved, but he has folded them, still not ready for a tank top. The shorts are what show the most skin.
He’s alone buying clothes, which Yoongi doesn’t comment on.
Trying on clothes with a head filled with hateful thoughts can be awful. But Jimin can do it. Yoongi’s reply is fast. “Both look good.” And then. “You’re buying the entire fit or just the shorts?”
“Entire fit, I think. The shirt’s fabric is very light.”
“Hyung. I’m texting you so you can help me pick!” Even if he doesn’t see him, Yoongi can imagine a cute pout.
“Which one makes you feel prettier?”
“The white shirt and beige shorts are cuter. But the blue short is sexier. It's tighter and shorter.”
“If I could get both, I wouldn’t be asking you to choose!” The imaginary pout turns into an angry frown. “It’s expensive.”
“You have expensive tastes.” Jimin sends a shrugging emoji, and Yoongi opens the photos again, zooming in while staring at them up and down.
His following text is a relatively easy choice. “Hyung could buy a shirt and a pair of shorts.”
A few minutes pass by before he receives many smiling emojis from Jimin. The one with a wide-open smile and crescent eyes. “Whipped,” Jimin accuses him, and Yoongi doesn’t argue.
Soon, Jimin ditches his dark-colored oversized sweaters and jeans for loose shirts and shorts. It’s still nothing too tight, but it's a first step, and the shorts are on the revealing side. The blue ones are Yoongi’s favorite. When Jimin curls on himself, they cling to his thighs
And everything Yoongi wants to do is dig his fingers into the supple flesh and squeeze and even get between them if he could
“Quit staring,” Jimin grits while scrolling down his phone in Yoongi’s bed. Yoongi thought Jimin wouldn’t notice his gaze, so he has the decency to blush.
Yoongi is fresh off the shower, changing clothes by his closet, and Jimin is waiting for him. “It’s hard not to stare,” Yoongi says, searching for a shirt.
“Likewise,” Jimin raises an eyebrow, gesturing in Yoongi’s direction, where he’s still only with a towel around his hips.
"But I'm a gentleman, and I don't ogle even if you're prancing naked in front of me," Jimin states before focusing on his phone again.
"I didn't know I'm forbidden from staring at what's mine." Yoongi finds the shirt he wants, and when he turns, he catches Jimin's open mouth.
"Yours?" Jimin asks before dropping onto the bed again and clutching his phone. "You're so full of yourself."
Yoongi finishes changing before joining Jimin. The mattress dips with his knee, and Jimin ignores him even if he can feel Yoongi behind him. "Am I wrong?" Yoongi asks.
He lets his desires win and squeezes Jimin's thigh. "This isn't mine?"
Jimin twists in bed to face him, and Yoongi has to raise his hands in defeat. "You're silly."
"I guess." Jimin gets a hold of Yongi's shirt and drags him down to the bed, so they lie together.
They stare at each other, the mattress squishing their cheeks. "Are we still going to the movies?" Jimin shakes his head. "Why not? Do you want us to lie here all day?"
Jimin bites his lip before throwing his leg across Yoongi's hip, sticking his body to Yoongi's. "Why not?"
Instinctively, Yoongi’s hand lowers to his object of desire, gripping Jimin’s thigh and keeping him close. “You know what you’re doing with all this, don’t you?” He accentuates the question with fingers ghosting under the hem of Jimin’s shorts.
Jimin only smiles.
He holds Yoongi's hand and brings it higher. "You only stare at what's yours?"
When Yoongi smashes their lips together, he thinks it's a different kiss from all the previous. While he has always enjoyed kissing Jimin, this is the first time Jimin gets completely lost.
There’s nothing better than seeing Jimin comfortable in his skin, aware of his power over Yoongi, and knowing that the body he grew to dislike is beautiful in Yoongi’s eyes.
Slowly but surely, Yoongi keeps his eyes and hands always on Jimin, and Jimin rejoices.
After months of sessions, Jimin can finally say that he likes how clothes look on him. Not every day but most days. He still wants to lose weight, but he’ll be wiser now. He has a nutritionist to help him reach his goal with a new plan that isn’t as drastic as the one from before
And with food restrictions, physical restrictions start to go away too.
It happens gradually. The first step is removing his shorts. It’s easier since they’re so revealing already. Then, getting comfortable on his back and letting Yoongi lower until Jimin can’t see him.
Jimin has already been intimate with Yoongi in many other ways, revealing the sides of him he was afraid of showing others and admitting thoughts he had never said aloud. Vulnerable each time. Jimin can keep showing other parts of himself, knowing Yoongi will take care of him.
And Yoongi does take care of him. Not only making him feel good but making him feel small under him like Jimin thought he’d never get to feel.
The right words against his ear and the strength Yoongi uses to keep Jimin pinned down against the bed are what he always wanted.
They take their time with each new step. And while it drives Jimin crazy, he understands Yoongi needs to talk about everything before trying something new. “You know you never told me those things you fantasized about doing with me.”
Jimin glares at him. “It’s embarrassing.”
“Embarrassing?" Yoongi scoffs next to Jimin's ear. "You told me you touched yourself a lot during our first month of dating.”
“And you told me you think of doing many things to me and that you watched my channel for my hands and voice. That one was on our second date.”
If Yoongi weren’t cuddling him in his bed, Jimin would run away. “You can tell me anything.”
And Jimin mutters, “it's like kinky stuff.”
There's a long pause between them. “Wow. It’s amazing that you keep learning new stuff about the person you let inside your house daily.”
Jimin pushes him away without force, and Yoongi laughs softly before pressing their foreheads together. “I’m sorry. What kind of kinky stuff?”
“I’ve never actually done them, but there’s stuff I like watching.”
“Like— blindfolds and stuff like that.”
“Stuff like blindfolds? That’s a very open statement. That could be many things..”
“Hyung! Blindfolds and ropes and you get what I mean!”
Yoongi takes a deep breath, and it’s addicting how Jimin can notice the shift behind his eyes by now. “And do you want to try that?”
Jimin doesn’t push himself to please anyone but himself anymore. “Honestly? Not yet. I like them in concept, but I’m not sure about the practice”
A chuckle. “Alright.”
“Some other time.” They share a solemn nod. “But there’s something that I do to myself that I like.”
“What?” Yoongi whispers, his hand moving to Jimin’s hips.
“When I have time, I like pushing it far,” Jimin toys with Yoongi’s shirt. “I stop before coming and do it again and again until I can’t anymore.”
“Fuck,” Yoongi breathes before staring at him. “I’d like to see that.”
Jimin doesn’t need to do anything other than talk and be himself, and Yoongi is already hard, making Jimin feel brave. “Why don’t you do that to me so you can see?” When Yoongi pulls his shorts down his legs, Jimin is calm when setting a limit. “Not the shirt.”
They share another kiss before Yoongi latches his lips to Jimin’s skin. It used to make him feel queasy when Yoongi kissed parts of his body he thought weren’t perfect, but the drag of Yoongi’s lips make Jimin cherish every inch of himself too, and he can only think of that.
When the bell rings, Jimin hurries to find Jungkook behind the door with all his equipment. “Are we ready for a day of work?” he beams as he enters the apartment.
Jimin receives his backpack so he can remove his boots. “We are,” Yoongi says, not so enthusiastically.
Jungkook snickers. “I sent a file with the shots we’ll be doing. It smells amazing here.”
“Thank you,” Yoongi grumbles.
“Can you open the file, Jimin?”
“Yes!” Jimin squeaks, and as he searches for his tablet, Jungkook teases him about upgrading from fan to assistant director.
Jimin opens the file Jungkook sent. It’s titled “Everything I cook for my boyfriend in a day.” And it’s so silly; it makes Jimin smile. He can’t wait for the final version.
Jimin glances at Yoongi, his hair is in a bun, and his black shirt is tight against his chest and biceps.
Yoongi said he hated being his partner's personal chef, but on the file’s first page, there are other possible names for the video. And the first one says, “a day as my boyfriend’s personal chef.”
Jimin is different from the rest. They both mean something special to each other.
After filming, when they dive into everything Yoongi cooked for the video, Jimin sits across from his boyfriend, watching him in real life instead of on a screen. Maybe Yoongi couldn’t prepare the same dish for years at a restaurant, but Jimin knows he’ll do this for much longer.
• the end •
you know what topics I like to write about, so I'm sure this au wasn't a surprise, yet this is a theme I've been avoiding for a long time out of fear of not doing it right. I hope my first attempt at approaching this kind of story was enjoyable. thank you so much for reading.