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i love you a lot, you know

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Taehyung really doesn't want to ruin this moment, his head pillowed in his best friend's lap, said best friend's fingers running through his hair, soothing.

After all this time, Yoongi knows exactly what Taehyung likes. He knows what part of his head to scratch when he can’t sleep, and where to touch when he needs comforting. He knows Taehyung inside and out, and Taehyung wishes he could keep his mouth shut and enjoy Yoongi’s hand in his hair and his warm thighs under his head.

But he has to speak up. He's put this off for way too long. It's now or never, and it can't be never. It just can't be. It wouldn't be right.

So he says, “hey, hyung,” all quiet, half hoping the murmured voices from the television will drown him out.

Above him, Yoongi glances down from his phone, fingers stilling in his hair, one eyebrow raised. He's looks so cute at this angle, and Taehyung is all too tempted to reach up and tickle his chin, to shut his mouth before he digs his own grave.

"Hyung," he says again anyway, balling his hands into fists to keep them to himself, because he'd rather dig his own grave than Yoongi's, "I think I'm gonna move out."

The lighting isn't so good in here, Yoongi's face lit only by the cheesy action movie neither of them are paying any attention to, and the dim screen of his phone. But even so, Taehyung can see that his expression doesn't change at all. And he’s known Yoongi long enough to know it's not a good sign, when he gets all quiet and stony, when he doesn't react. Like the time Taehyung spilled soda on his laptop just a month after moving in, back when Yoongi didn’t really like him yet, and Yoongi didn't speak to him for almost a week.

He didn't yell and he didn't get mad. He didn't break something of Taehyung's for revenge. He didn't even look at him for days , just pretended Taehyung didn't exist at all. The whole ordeal had been so stressful, Taehyung nearly called Namjoon and asked if he could sleep on his couch until he could find some place else to go.

Of course now Taehyung is eternally grateful he chose to stick it out. If he hadn't, he and Yoongi would never have gotten here, closer than Taehyung has ever been with anyone. Happier than Taehyung has ever been with anyone. But that's the problem. Taehyung is so, so happy to even be close to Yoongi.

And Yoongi just isn't. He doesn't seem happy at all. He seems lonely . And Taehyung thinks that might be his fault, at least a little.

They're getting to that age. Mid twenties, steady careers. Weekly dinners with their close friends instead of taking to bars and clubs during the weekends, late nights spent lounging on the couch after a long day at work instead of cramming for tests. That age where everything slows down and the desire for something more stable comes along. Most of their friends have already paired off, settled down, have talked about getting married and having kids, and Yoongi and Taehyung...

Well, Yoongi and Taehyung haven't.

Taehyung has found the one for him. Of course he has. Of course it's Yoongi. Anyone with eyes can see that Min Yoongi is Taehyung's whole entire world, that he loves him more than all the stars in the sky and all the planets in the universe and all that other sappy stuff. But it's different for Yoongi. Harder.

"When?" Yoongi asks, startling Taehyung from his thoughts, from staring at Yoongi's suspiciously still chest. His voice, low and even, almost gets drowned out by the TV like Taehyung still sort of wishes his own comment did.

"Uh." Taehyung blinks up at the ceiling. "Well, I haven't decided on a place yet, but I've been looking, and there's this—"

"Get up.”

Yoongi doesn't even give Taehyung a chance before he’s shoving him off his lap, nearly poking him in the eye. Taehyung yelps and rolls away, landing on the floor on his hands and knees with a dull thud, the ache of his fall pushed to the back of his mind as he scrambles to his feet to rush after Yoongi.

"Hyung, what are you—" he starts, following him into his room, but Yoongi shoots him a harsh look that shuts him right up as he grabs his charger off the floor and sticks it into his phone. He sits at the edge of his bed and taps at the screen, ignoring Taehyung's stunned stare in favor of lifting his phone to his ear.

"Joon-ah," he says after a minute, picking at the frayed hole in the knee of his jeans, "you know anyone looking for a room?"

Taehyung's jaw drops. The whole point of him moving out is so Yoongi can focus on himself and his own life instead of on Taehyung, not to find a replacement for him and definitely not like this. It isn't like Yoongi can't afford this place on his own. Hell, even Taehyung could, and Yoongi makes a hell of a lot more than he does.

"Wait, hyung—"

"Oh, yeah, everything's fine," Yoongi says into the phone, talking right over Taehyung. "Nah, he's moving out."

Taehyung just blinks. This is all so sudden and his head is spinning.

Yoongi barks out a sharp laugh. "Dunno... Uh huh... Yes, Namjoon." He rolls his eyes. "Alright. Talk to you soon." He pulls the phone from his ear and ends the call, stretching slowly before dropping it on his nightstand. He glances at Taehyung, eyeing him up and down before his gaze settles on his chest. "Did you need something?"

Taehyung thinks he might cry. Not even two whole minutes ago they were cuddled up on the couch, and now Yoongi is looking at him like spending another second talking to him is just a waste of his time, and for the first time in over five years, Taehyung doesn't know how to act in front of him.

"Well, I," he mumbles, gaze dropping to his feet, "I just thought we should talk about this a little more?"

Yoongi snorts, hopping up off the bed and moving to his dresser. He digs around in the top drawer, pulling out the plaid pajama pants Taehyung bought him two Christmases ago. "What's there to talk about? You wanna move out. It's cool." He pauses, shoves the pants back in his drawer and pulls out an old pair of gray sweats that used to be Hoseok's. "I'm tired, so unless there's anything else?"

There's not. Not right now, not when Yoongi is being like this. He needs time to cool down. Taehyung has probably hurt his feelings and he just needs time to process. To understand. To know that if it were up to Taehyung, he'd never move out. Yoongi just needs to figure out that this is for his own good.

———

Taehyung is over it.

For days he's tiptoed around his best friend, received the harshest of cold shoulders, the pettiest of silent treatments. Yoongi has reverted to treating him the way he did back in the beginning, like he doesn't even exist. Like he's a nuisance. Taehyung misses him, misses their talks after work and their movie nights on the couch and how they sometimes fall asleep and wake up tangled in each other.

But more than that, he's mad.

It's a Thursday, which would have meant takeout on the couch, complaining to Yoongi about his long day, listening to him mumble about his clients and his music. But it's nearly seven o'clock and Yoongi is still in his bedroom, avoiding Taehyung like he's done all week, and Taehyung is done.

Yoongi doesn't answer his knock, which is exactly what he was expecting, so he opens the bedroom door anyway. And Yoongi is there on his bed, laptop in his lap, headphones over his ears. Taehyung knows he heard him knock and he knows he sees him standing in the doorway, but still, Yoongi doesn't even look up. Just keeps his eyes glued to the screen in front of him, clicking things every now and then, no change in expression whatsoever.

"Hyung," says Taehyung.

Nothing.

And Taehyung is so sick of all of it, so he stomps over and snatches the headphones right off Yoongi's head, yanking the cord from the jack. Yoongi purses his lips but still doesn't look up, and something in Taehyung snaps.

Unfortunately, though, when Taehyung gets mad, he doesn't yell or spew insults or throw things.

He cries.

"What is wrong with you?" he asks, voice thick already, vision blurred with those stupid tears that only frustrate him more. "Are you mad at me for something? Is this still about me wanting to move out?"

Even in the beginning, when they really even knew each other, Yoongi couldn't stand to see Taehyung cry. Taehyung won't ever forget the night Yoongi came home from work an hour early and caught him curled up on the couch, bawling his eyes out because not only did his parents hate him for something he couldn't control, but his new roommate seemed to hate him, too, and he didn't belong anywhere and he didn't know what to do. And Yoongi walked through the front door and froze, watched him scramble to wipe the tears from his face and calm the heaving of his chest, and then he threw that curveball that changed everything. He stepped out of his shoes and shuffled over, plopped down on the couch next to the still sniveling Taehyung, and asked, "wanna watch a movie?"

Taehyung is totally convinced that was the night he fell in love with Yoongi. When halfway through the movie, some brainless comedy that was probably meant to take his mind off of everything that was making him cry, Yoongi reached over and squeezed his shoulder and made him realize he was still crying and told him my parents wouldn't talk to me for almost two years after I came out, but they came around. Yours will too. He glanced over and met Taehyung's wide gaze. And if they don't, it's their loss.

But that sweet, comforting Yoongi is nowhere to be found now. Now, he's clenching his jaw, reaching out to shut his laptop, voice tight when he says his first words to Taehyung in almost a week.

"I was working on something."

Taehyung laughs. He can't help it. It just bubbles out along with a mess of tears, finally getting Yoongi's attention enough to earn his gaze.

"Why are you doing this to me, hyung?"

"Me?" Yoongi asks, eyes widening, and at least he's looking at him. "I'm doing this to you?”

Taehyung wipes at his runny nose with the back of his hand and curses himself for being a messy crier. His anger is quickly fleeing and he's left feeling sad, standing in front of Yoongi's bed, feeling every bit like the child he was when he first moved in here.

"Taehyung, you're the one who wants to leave out of nowhere. I'm not doing shit."

"I don't want to leave," Taehyung exclaims, and he knows it's a bad idea, that he should adamantly stick to his guns here, but he doesn't deal well with pressure and he definitely doesn't deal well with Yoongi being mad at him. He aches to sit down on the bed and lean forward and latch onto him, but the scowl on Yoongi's face suggests that would be a bad idea, too. "I have to. It's for your own good."

Yoongi narrows his eyes. He still looks angry, but not as angry, and Taehyung can work with that, he thinks. He can deal with a grumpy, confused Yoongi. It's the cold, seething Yoongi he has no idea what to do with.

"What," Yoongi asks in such a deadpan tone, Taehyung isn't sure he's supposed to answer.

He does anyway.

"I gotta move out." He blinks hard, willing his tears to stop. "So you can, you know, find someone."

Finally, Yoongi's expression softens. He lets out a faint sigh and runs a hand down his face, looking about as tired as Taehyung feels.

"Taehyung, what the hell are you talking about?"

When Yoongi meets his eyes, Taehyung shrugs. Now that he isn't being glared within an inch of his life, he climbs up onto the bed, Yoongi shimmying over to make room.

"You're getting old, hyung. Don't you wanna find someone to settle down with? How many guys can you honestly bring home with me in the next room? I'm only getting in your way."

"I'm not old, you little shit," Yoongi grumbles, nudging Taehyung's knee with his foot. "And if that's the real reason you're leaving, you're an even bigger idiot than I thought."

He reaches over, wiping at the mess that is Taehyung's face with his thumbs. Taehyung tries to protest, but Yoongi only shushes him.

"And if you're an even bigger idiot than I thought," he says, straightening out the collar of the shirt Taehyung has still yet to change out of after work, "there's no way you're gonna be able to keep yourself alive on your own. So my answer is no."

Taehyung blinks. "Your answer...?"

"To you moving out. What? You think I can trust you to fend for yourself?" Yoongi shakes his head. Up close like this, Taehyung can see what the past week has done to him. The bags under his eyes, the pale undertone of his skin. He's been suffering, too. "You're not going anywhere, got it? End of discussion."

Taehyung knows Yoongi well enough by now to know this is just his way of telling him he doesn't want him to go. Maybe Taehyung shouldn't surrender so easily, but god, he's missed Yoongi so much. And Yoongi wants him to stay. What's the point in dragging this out? He can help him find other ways to be happy. Maybe he'll set him up with one of his friends from work. Maybe he can find someone who understands how close Taehyung and Yoongi are. Someone who would be okay with it.

"But what about—” He can feel himself getting weepy again, for a whole different reason. "You really want me to stay?"

The cocky quirk to Yoongi lips disappears. His knees are pressed against Taehyung's, both of them sitting cross legged on the bed, and Taehyung is tempted to scoop him up into his lap and cuddle him because it's been so long. Too long.

"I—" Yoongi drops his hands from Taehyung's shirt to his own lap, his gaze quickly following. "Yeah."

Taehyung grins, lurching forward, latching onto Yoongi the way he's wanted to since he walked in here. His arms go around Yoongi's shoulders, his face into his neck. And they may not really be cuddling the way Taehyung wishes they were, but for now, this'll do.

"Ah, hyung," he blubbers, ignoring the way Yoongi squirms, pretending to hate it. "I missed you so much."

Yoongi stills, the fight leaving him. He knows it's pointless anyway, trying to escape the affections of Kim Taehyung. So he lets Taehyung hold him and sniffle into the crook of his neck, his hand rubbing soothingly at Taehyung's back.

"I love you a lot, you know," Taehyung murmurs after a while, not lifting his head. But he knows Yoongi hears him.

"And?" Yoongi asks into his hair. Taehyung smiles, squeezing him tighter.

"And you're so cute I could die.”

Yoongi snorts, shoving at Taehyung's shoulder. "Yeah, whatever. Now get off of me."

 

———

 

It's cold out. The kind of cold that has Taehyung and Yoongi both wrapped in coats and gloves and scarves, stopping for coffee on their way home from the shopping trip Taehyung had to beg Yoongi to go on. Beg and beg and offer to do the dishes for a whole week just to get him to tag along, all because he didn't want to go alone.

Yoongi grumbles under his breath, eyes on his phone, so enthralled with whatever he's doing that he almost walks straight into the stranger in line in front of them. Taehyung tugs him back by his sleeve and Yoongi doesn't even notice, goes on tapping away at his screen.

Taehyung grins and wraps an arm tight around his shoulder.

It's been so good having Yoongi back. After the blow out they had over Taehyung wanting to move out, he wasn't sure they would be able to get back to this. But Yoongi leans into him, subconsciously, probably, and Taehyung squeezes him closer, and every bit of his stress melts away knowing nothing has changed between them.

The (ridiculously long, like Taehyung and Yoongi weren't the only ones who couldn't brave the cold without something hot to counteract it) line moves up, and Taehyung gets a look behind the counter and gasps.

"Hyung, look," he whispers, jostling Yoongi's shoulder, "isn't the barista cute?"

So Taehyung has taken matters into his own hands, so what? If Yoongi isn't willing to kick Taehyung out for the sake of his own love life, then the least Taehyung can do is help out a little. Give him a gentle nudge in the direction of something other than music and sleeping and lounging around, just the two of them.

Yoongi barely glances before shrugging, eyes gluing themselves back to his phone.

"I guess."

Taehyung sighs. It's such a typical response, and he just can't help himself. He knows Yoongi isn't going to budge, but still, he speaks up anyway because he cares.

"And his hands, hyung, look at them. Have you ever seen cuter fingers in your life?"

Yoongi's eyes flicker to Taehyung's hands, then his own. He doesn't respond.

"You should ask for his number."

Yoongi snorts without looking up this time, fingers tapping furiously against his phone. He's probably writing lyrics, maybe mapping out a beat. Taehyung wouldn't know. Yoongi hardly ever shares anything with him until it's done, until he's poured hours and days and weeks into something and still hates it, and then Taehyung has to praise him until he's blue in the face because nine times out of ten what Yoongi shows him is genius and he deserves every word of it.

"Fine," Taehyung says, guiding Yoongi up in the line, "give him your number, then."

Yoongi isn't fazed. Not much Taehyung does these days gets much of a reaction out of him. He wonders if he's become boring.

"I don't think so."

Taehyung bites the inside of his cheek because he almost doesn't want to say anything more. He doesn't want to start a fight, not here, but god, he worries for Yoongi. It's been months, at least that Taehyung knows of, since Yoongi has even hooked up with anyone. Over a year since he was involved in anything more serious than a simple fling. And sure, Taehyung is head over heels in love with the guy, but Yoongi has practically raised him over the years, probably sees him as a little brother, and he accepts that.

He wants him to be happy, and he wants someone good for him. Someone cute, like the guy behind the counter. Someone who will treat Yoongi the way he deserves.

"Why though?" he blurts, and okay, he guesses they're doing this here. "Why don't you date? Why don't you—You don't even mess around with people anymore. I'm worried about you, hyung."

Finally, Yoongi blinks up at him, slow and patient and only a little irritated.

"I've been busy."

"For four months? You've been so busy for four months that you can't go out and get laid?"

"Hey," Yoongi snaps harshly, eyes darting around the shop, "keep your fucking voice down."

They move up in the line again, one person left in front of them.

"And what, are you keeping track? It hasn't been four months, Taehyung, what the hell."

"Uh, yeah it has. It was still summer when you brought home the guy with the tattoos. Remember? 'Cause we were all gonna go out for ice cream after but you kicked him out for trying to bring me into round two—"

"Yeah, okay," Yoongi growls, tugging at Taehyung's shirt sleeve to shut him up. "Well, so what. Haven't met anyone I wanna fuck lately. Sue me."

Again, Taehyung nods towards the dark haired boy behind the counter and waggles his eyebrows. It's enough to make Yoongi crack a smile, at least, even as annoyed as he is, but it disappears along with the woman in front of them. They're up, and the guy is digging around behind the counter, getting ready to face them and—

"If you don't want him, I'll take him," Taehyung murmurs in Yoongi's ear, sliding his arm away from his shoulder. "He's really cute. I wouldn't mind tapping that."

Yoongi flinches away from Taehyung with a judgy look of disgust as the guy stands and gives them both a dazzling smile. Taehyung returns it, ignoring Yoongi's warning pinch to his arm when he leans against the counter. He's kind of short (like Yoongi) and ridiculously cute (also like Yoongi), and Taehyung takes it as a sign of fate.

"Hey, guys, what can I get for you?"

Taehyung knows he's about to make an ass out of himself, and he feels very bad for the poor guy who's about to bear the brunt of it, but this is for his best friend. This is for Yoongi, so it's worth making himself look like a total tool in front of the entire coffee shop.

He puts on his best flirty smile, tilting his head to the side as he leans in close over the counter.

"Is your number on the menu?"

The guy blinks, then laughs as Yoongi mutters every curse word he knows in several different languages, because leave it to Min Yoongi to learn the essentials.

"Unfortunately it's not," he says lightly, swiping his black hair from his eyes. "My boyfriend wouldn't let me out it up there."

Taehyung deflates as Yoongi snorts. So much for that.

"Ah, I see. Well, a hot chocolate works, too."

While the guy prepares their order, Yoongi tugs Taehyung down by the neck of his coat, breath tickling his ear as he growls, "that kid better not fucking spit in my drink because of you, Kim Taehyung, I swear to god."

Taehyung can only wrap both arms tightly around Yoongi's shoulders and laugh, because he knows him well enough by now to know when his threats are empty.

But as they walk home, bundled in all their layers, hunched over their steaming paper cups with their other hands weighed down with grocery bags, Taehyung can't stop thinking about it.

Sure, Yoongi is still young enough now, but what happens if he doesn't get out of this slump? What if he waits too long and there aren't any good guys left? What if he misses his shot at happiness? God, what if Taehyung meets someone and they get serious and want to move in together and he leaves Yoongi alone?

Taehyung had thought that maybe he was to blame, that Yoongi wasn't looking for anything because of Taehyung, because he didn't want to get into something serious and have to choose between living with his best friend or his partner. But hell, Taehyung offered to move out and Yoongi didn't speak to him for nearly a week, so if Taehyung is at fault, Yoongi must be fine with it.

The hard part about it, though, is that Taehyung isn't. He isn't fine with Yoongi wanting to hole himself inside their apartment and not get out there and meet people. He isn't fine with possibly being the reason, with getting in the way of Yoongi's happiness. He isn't fine with Yoongi hiding behind him so he doesn't have to put himself out there. Taehyung feels sick with worry and guilt, afraid they're both wasting their time sitting stagnant in their love lives.

They make it home and inside, and Yoongi sheds his layers and shakes the snow out of his hair before plopping down on the worn sofa, groceries left on the kitchen counter to be dealt with later. Taehyung follows his lead, sits close for warmth, but also because he needs the closeness right now. He's easy to upset and Yoongi always makes him feel better without even trying, and he wants to make sure Yoongi feels okay, too.

Neither of them move for the remote, so they sit with their drinks in silence until Taehyung sighs and rests his head on Yoongi's shoulder.

"I love you a lot, you know," he whispers. Yoongi presses his cheek against the top of Taehyung's head and Taehyung suddenly wants to cry.

"And?"

"And I just want you to be happy."

"I am, Taehyung-ah. I am happy."

Taehyung knows Yoongi well enough by now to know when he's lying.

 

———

 

He's been thinking about it all week.

At first, he didn't want to. It would be cruel, he thought when it first occurred to him, to give himself hope by even entertaining the idea. But once it wiggled its way into his brain, it took hold and refused to let go.

And the more Taehyung thinks about it, the more it makes sense.

"Tae," Yoongi says, and Taehyung glances over at him. He's hovered over the stove, the pot on the burner steaming as he uses a wooden spoon to stir. "Hand me the measuring cup, would you? It's up in that cabinet."

"Sure thing," says Taehyung. What he really wants to say is do you like me, hyung? Do you like me the way I like you? but that's not very tactful. Yoongi gets weird about feelings sometimes. Taehyung needs to approach this with caution.

He finds the measuring cup, hands it over, goes back to pretending to browse through his phone as he leans back against the kitchen counter.

Whatever Yoongi is making smells great. It's not often they eat a home cooked meal instead of ordering in, usually Yoongi saves his master chef skills for special occasions, but Taehyung isn't about to complain. He's going to stand right here in case Yoongi needs him to reach something off a high shelf again, and be Yoongi's taste tester, and torture himself with wondering if Yoongi has feelings for him.

It probably isn't the only explanation. It probably isn't even the explanation, but it's the only one Taehyung can think of.

Why doesn't Yoongi date? Because he has feelings for someone. Why doesn't Yoongi want Taehyung to move out? Why does he treat Taehyung so much differently than everyone else? Why is Taehyung allowed to be close to him and touch him and tease him in a way that would have Yoongi threatening the life of literally anyone but him? Because he has feelings for Taehyung.

He can't tell if it's the truth or just wishful thinking, but as his eyes catch on the date on the screen he's pretending to be enthralled with, those thoughts get shoved to the back burner.

"Oh my god," he gasps, head whipping up to stare wide eyed at Yoongi. Yoongi sends him a curious glance as he pours whatever it is he's adding into the pot. "Oh my god, hyung, do you know what day it is?"

Yoongi doesn't respond, but Taehyung knows him well enough by now to know that only means he's listening.

"It's our six year roommate-iversary!" Taehyung drops the phone on the counter behind him and latches onto Yoongi's shoulder, shaking him gently to drive home the gravity of what he's saying. "Hyung, we've known each other for exactly six years.”

Yoongi's lips quirk to one side just a little, but that's all he can do before Taehyung throws his arms around his waist from behind, not to interrupt his cooking, and presses a big, sloppy kiss to his cheek. Yoongi tries to smack his arms away as he curses at him, but Taehyung only laughs.

Six years. Six whole years since his parents disowned him and he lived on the street for weeks until Hoseok found out, took him in, helped him find a job. Six whole years since Hoseok told Taehyung he might know a place he could stay for a while, a place with his own room, as long as he could help out with the bills. Six whole years since he showed up on Yoongi's doorstep looking like a delinquent runaway.

Six whole years since he laid eyes on the guy who would turn out to be his best friend and the love of his life.

"Exactly six years ago today I walked in here for the first time and you hated me."

Yoongi laughs. Taehyung doesn't hear it, but he feels it as he squeezes him to his chest.

"I never hated you."

"You did, though. For like, six months? You wouldn't even talk to me." Taehyung leans down to rest his chin against Yoongi's shoulder, grip tightening around his waist. "I dunno, but it sucked."

Yoongi stiffens in Taehyung's arms, lazily stirring with his giant spoon.

"I just didn't know you. I talked to you eventually."

Taehyung snorts. "Yeah, after you found me on the couch crying my eyes out."

He gets no response to that, just a very tense Yoongi in his arms, Taehyung's view of his face obscured by his hair. He wants to turn Yoongi around, get a good look at him, try to guess what he's thinking, but he won't. If Yoongi wants him to know, he'll tell him himself.

So he loosens his iron grip around him, and Yoongi relaxes, pressing back willingly into Taehyung's chest, just a little. Taehyung almost wants to pull away, afraid Yoongi will feel his thrumming heart against his back, but Yoongi is hardly ever the one to initiate affection, and Taehyung can't imagine ruining the moment.

"Six years, hyung, can you believe it?" he whispers instead, pressing his cheek to Yoongi's hair. Yoongi isn't stirring the food anymore, even though it's bubbling. "Six whole years."

"Feels like a lifetime."

Taehyung would gently smack him if it weren't for his tone, low and reminiscent and a little sad, and god, if Yoongi is getting sappy over this, Taehyung will never let him live it down.

"I can't tell if I should be offended or if you're getting mushy on me."

"Little of both, probably. Now let go of me."

Taehyung knows Yoongi well enough by now to know that if he really wanted Taehyung to let him go, he'd remove him himself.

Yoongi turns off the stove and moves the pot to a different burner before squirming in Taehyung's hold, and Taehyung thinks maybe he was wrong just now, that Yoongi does want him off, until he turns in his arms instead of leaving them completely. Taehyung fights against the urge to tackle him in a hug, decides to let Yoongi take the lead, something he never, ever does at times like this because he knows Yoongi isn't great at handling feelings, platonic or not, and he likes making things easy for him when he can.

So against his better judgement, Taehyung stands still and lets his arms fall to his sides, waits for Yoongi make the decisions, waits for Yoongi come to him, anxious and curious and trembling just a little because the air is suddenly really thick and those thoughts he's had all week are right there in the front of his mind, screaming for attention. And Yoongi isn't looking at him but he really doesn't have to, not as he presses closer, resting his forehead against Taehyung's shoulder.

He knows Yoongi is waiting for him to hug him; he always hints when he wants to be touched, never wants to be the one to make the first move when he knows Taehyung is always so eager. But this time Taehyung waits, biting his lip against a smile, using every bit of his willpower not to wrap his arms around him.

Yoongi huffs, but he seems to catch on. He glares up through squinted eyes with a frown so cute Taehyung's heart aches.

"Stop it, Tae."

"Stop what? I'm not doing anything."

Yoongi leans back a little more to scowl.

"C'mon hyung, you gotta tell me what you want. I'm not a mind reader."

"For fucks sake Taehyung, you know what I want." Yoongi looks like a sulky child, frowning up at him, the natural pout to his lips making him look so tempting, Taehyung could scream. "You always know what I want."

Taehyung doesn't know where the sudden courage comes from. He knows this is a bad idea. It's a horrible, terrible, awful idea, but the atmosphere is different somehow, a strange tingling of anticipation in the pit of his stomach, his heart nearly bursting at the seams. He thinks Yoongi might feel it too with the way he's staring up at him, scowl slowly slipping away. Taehyung wonders what's changed as he opens his mouth and takes advantage of the moment before it breaks.

"But do you know what I want?"

His heart is in his throat as Yoongi licks his lips, eyebrows working slowly into another frown. And Taehyung, because he's a weak, weak man when it comes to Min Yoongi, inches his arms slowly around Yoongi's shoulders to hug him the way he knows Yoongi wants him to.

"Pokemon movie marathon and hot chocolate's usually a safe bet," he mumbles, relaxing slowly under Taehyung's touch. And yeah, maybe Yoongi is right, that does sound amazing, but...

"Sure, but there's something right now that I want more."

Maybe it's the trembling of his voice that has Yoongi leaning back to send him a multitude of incredulous glances, eyebrows furrowed and lips parted in disbelief.

"More than Pokemon and hot chocolate? Are you sick?"

Taehyung chuckles around the lump in his throat, stroking the back of Yoongi's head with a quivering hand. What he's about to say, what he's about to do, is going to change everything, Taehyung knows that, and he's scared. He's so scared to ruin this, Yoongi is the best friend he's ever had, but Taehyung thinks that if he doesn't get this out of his system, he might actually explode. He has to at least try it, just once, and he hopes he and Yoongi are close enough to laugh it off if it's weird.

"Maybe I am," he mumbles, slowly pulling Yoongi's head closer with the same trembling hand. Yoongi seems to realize where this is going, gaze dropping to Taehyung's mouth, tongue darting out to wet his own lips again. He's not pulling away, not squirming, not even saying anything to dissuade Taehyung from bringing him closer, and if Taehyung didn't know any better, he'd think Yoongi might actually want this. That maybe all the thoughts he's been thinking lately haven't just been wishful thinking, after all.

And then Yoongi's hands fist into Taehyung's shirt over his chest, and Taehyung thinks he might not know any better, because Yoongi is tugging him down, and Taehyung loses the remainder of his self restraint.

It isn't clear who kisses who first, and he really couldn't care less. The only thing on the planet that matters right now is this moment, Yoongi's hand sliding around the back of Taehyung's neck to hold him steady, Yoongi's mouth pressing lightly against his, Yoongi's gasp when Taehyung groans, when his hands slide down to grip Yoongi's hips and bring him closer.

Taehyung has always wondered what it would be like to kiss Yoongi. He's been in love with the guy for over five years, so of course he has. But he's also wondered if the real thing would live up to all the hype in his mind. If kissing Yoongi would be all he made it out to be, or if it would be like kissing any one of his flings. If it would be weird, after being best friends for over half a decade.

But here they are, having their first kiss in their kitchen, one of the least romantic places Taehyung can think of, and it's—it's everything. It's more than that. It's Yoongi grinning against his mouth as Taehyung's thumb gets caught in his belt loop. It's Taehyung stupidly laughing when Yoongi tugs his bottom lip between his teeth because he's so damn happy, he doesn't know what to do with himself. It's Yoongi's hand dropping, finding Taehyung's, lacing their fingers together when he pulls back to look up at him, only for Taehyung to drag him back in, making Yoongi smile all over again.

Quickly, Taehyung learns that he could kiss Yoongi forever. Not long after that, he remembers breathing is a thing he has to do, so he and Yoongi part again, regretfully as far as both of them are concerned.

“Well, fuck,” Yoongi murmurs happily before Taehyung has even caught his breath. It's those lungs of steel from all that rapping he does, Taehyung is sure of it. “I really thought you'd never figure out why I don't date anymore.”

Taehyung doesn't even bother hiding his love-struck grin. He squeezes Yoongi's hand, his free hand moving up to thread through Yoongi's dark hair.

“I didn't—I wasn't sure. I guess I didn't wanna get my hopes up.”

“Your hopes up,” Yoongi chuckles breathlessly. He runs his thumb along the side of Taehyung's neck before meeting his gaze again. “Me wanting to be with you got your hopes up.”

“What?” Taehyung asks, but Yoongi shakes his head.

“I've been waiting for you a long time, Taehyung-ah. That's all.”

Taehyung doesn't know whether to laugh or cry, so he leans back down to kiss Yoongi again, just because he can.

“I've been waiting longer.”

Yoongi snorts, wiggling out of Taehyung's arms. He turns for the cabinet, pulling down two glass bowls, and Taehyung marvels at how cool he's being about all this.

“Try me.”

But as Yoongi scoops spoonfuls into each bowl, Taehyung can see the slight tremor of his hands. Knowing that Yoongi is feeling the effects of their kiss, too, makes him smile.

So does knowing he's about to win.

“The first time we watched a movie together,” Taehyung says easily. Yoongi hands one of the bowls over, eyes on his own food. “You were so nice to me that night. You even let me fall asleep on your shoulder. That was when I knew.”

“Oh,” Yoongi murmurs. Taehyung laughs, nudging him with his shoulder and nodding towards the living room.

“What about you, hyung? When did you know?”

They shuffle all the way to the couch, side by side. Taehyung throws his legs across Yoongi's lap as soon as they're seated, and Yoongi rests the hand not holding his bowl on Taehyung's shin.

“Do you remember that guy you were seeing? With the glasses?”

Taehyung does. It's was over three years ago now, but they had dated for almost six months (and he was pretty phenomenal in bed), so of course he remembers. He also remembers how awkward it was, bringing him around.

“Oh, man. He really didn't like you.”

“Why do you think that is?” Yoongi asks, and Taehyung laughs, because the answer to that is obvious.

“Because he felt threatened by you. He told me that. Like, multiple times.”

“And why do you think that is?”

“Um… because he knew I was into you?”

Yoongi smiles softly, gently patting Taehyung's leg.

“Because he knew I was into you. Hell, he knew before I did.”

Yoongi sees Taehyung's confused frown, and sighs.

“After you guys broke up, he came by while you were at work. To pick up a few things he left. Asked me if I was happy to finally get what I wanted.” He shrugs, leaning over to set his untouched food on the coffee table. “I thought he was talking about not having to see his tall ass lurking around glaring at me anymore. But when I went to bed that night, I really thought about it. That's when I realized how I felt about you.”

Taehyung stares at Yoongi with wide eyes, his bowl in his lap, forgotten. Three years is a whole lot longer than he expected. Hell, before today, Taehyung wasn't sure Yoongi had feelings for him at all.

Yoongi's thumb is rubbing gentle circles just above Taehyung's knee. He's watching him quietly, letting what he said sink in. Letting everything sink in. But it'll take a lot longer than one night for Taehyung to get used to this.

“We've been stupid, haven't we?” he finally asks. Of course he's happy, but they could have had this at least three years ago, and he regrets waiting so long. “Think of how much time we've wasted.”

Yoongi grins, turning his hand over on Taehyung's thigh and wiggling his fingers. Taehyung takes the hint and reaches over, slipping his hand into Yoongi's.

“Not a single minute I've spent with you has been wasted, Taehyung-ah.”

“Ah, hyung, seriously,” Taehyung whines. Yoongi laughs loudly, tugging at his hand, attempting to pull him in for a kiss that Taehyung dodges. “Don't say such cheesy things!”

But later (after learning firsthand that Yoongi is even more phenomenal in bed than any of his past partners), it's Taehyung's turn to get sappy.

Yoongi is on the verge of sleep, tucked into Taehyung's side, their legs tangled together under Yoongi's blanket. Taehyung listens to his breath even out, watches his lips slowly part as he drifts off, wonders if he can hear his own heart thudding hard behind his ribs.

He's said it a thousand times, but now it's different. Taehyung knows it is, and Yoongi will know it, too. But he means it, more than he's ever meant anything, so much that he might explode if he doesn't get it out. And so he brushes Yoongi's hair out of his eyes with trembling fingers and asks, “hyung?”

Yoongi presses a kiss to Taehyung's bare shoulder with a sleepy, muffled hum. Taehyung grins, chest aching.

“I love you a lot, you know.”

Taehyung thinks Yoongi might be fighting a smile as he tilts his chin up, but it's too dark to tell. His eyes slowly peel open, settling on Taehyung, unwavering.

“And?”

“And nothing. I just really love you.”

“Yeah, well.”

Yoongi tosses his arm around Taehyung's neck and buries his face into his chest. He's probably just hiding, but Taehyung appreciates the closeness, regardless.

He doesn't expect Yoongi to say much else, and that's okay. Yoongi isn't great with expressing his feelings, which isn't news to Taehyung. He just wanted to tell Yoongi how he feels, that's all.

But just as he starts to doze off, Yoongi squirms in his arms. Lifts his chin and says into Taehyung's neck, “me too.”

Taehyung knows Yoongi well enough by now to know that he means it.