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From timber to tinder

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The sunlight shone down stubbornly despite already being covered by several passing clouds, the shadows underneath momentarily softening.

And underneath one of the bigger trees, the kind whose stump would tell stories of drought and monsoons, there were two men bickering as they cut through the glorified stem known as the trunk.

It's been exactly 57 days, 43 minutes and 19 seconds since Yoongi last saw another human. Other than Hoseok, that is.

"Hey, you wanna go with me to the bar, at least? Do you even know how to communicate anymore?" Hoseok hung behind one of the most recent tree-turned-stumps, yelling out at Yoongi's quickly departing figure.

"Timber." Yoongi said boredly as he hefted up his chainsaw. There was hardly anyone here. And he should know, because what started as a job as a supervisor had turned rapidly into an increasingly lonely job after businesses finally decided deforestation was a big enough problem that might eventually shrink their pool of customers.

"No, really, Yoongi-ah! It's been almost 2 months since you last saw someone else. Your voice is husky as heck."

"It's all just a part of my charm." Yoongi muttered, searching for his next target, marked by the same crude red X for the past years.

"If forest goblin was what you were going for, you've got all of it doing great for you, I guess. What with your height, the lack of shaving and your tendency to hole up in caves. tIMBER!" Hoseok retorted,

Yoongi kept quiet.
Yoongi kept quiet.
Yoongi kept quiet.

"Cmon, it's been so long since you last got laid! I'll just show you something new at the bar tonight- we finally got a proper connection and I bought a new smartphone!"

Yoongi muttered as he went on, Hoseok hearing snippets of 'dumbass idiot who won't leave me alone' and 'no such thing as forest goblin'.

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Yoongi still somehow showed up at the bar with his fellow companion anyway.

The Bear Bar was a self-respecting place of polished wood counters and tables other than purely bar stools, with beer from all the typical suppliers and other cheaper alternatives too. Not much in the way of snacks and such, but who shows up at a bar for chips anyway?

"Will you show me the thing so we can go already." Yoongi swirled his straw around his bloody mary, almost tempted to blow little bubbles in it for fun.

"Okay, okay! See here, since we have a data connection here, we just go to the App Store, search for dating apps- well, Tinder has an Editor's Choice Award, so let's do that."

It was deceptively simple.

"Okay now that we have tinder, let's just follow the instructions. Login with your phone number- I'll just use mine. Are you a woman or a man? What university are you from? What's your phone number? Enable location- wow okay we're done."

It was deceptively simple.

"Wait wait wait. That guy's name is Mario? His anthem is Billie Eilish? Next." Yoongi giggled, hugging his glass to himself. It probably was the result of the alcohol, but who knew?

Tinder was deceptively simple.

And neither thought about the consequences of it as they edited his bio and job information, perhaps a tad tipsy, before receiving a sudden match from an angel on earth.

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After just jumping out of the closet, Jimin decided to celebrate his gayness by doing what any lonely gay would do- Tinder.

It didn't help that he had just finished college, and was entering a slump of copy-pasting his resume into every given opportunity with minor edits to make sure he incorporated the values they wanted to see in his work attitude.

The first profile he saw belonged to a lumberjack named Mun Yoiingi.

His bio said," love choping trees with!! NOT best friend hoseik id fun d!eforestatuon wan duck"

Man, it seemed like he was cross-eyed when he typed it or something, but as any fellow environment lover would do, he wanted to meet up with this lumberjack and give him a piece of his mind.

How is "deforestatuon" fun anyway?!

Jimin grudgingly swiped right before "Yoiingi" slipped away forever.

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Jimin: hey

Jimin: maybe we could meet up and stuff

Jimin: y'know the environment is dying and the lumber industry is really making it worse

Jimin: but do y'all do sustainable logging

Jimin: I find reforestation sexy

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Jimin groaned, regretting that last message. It was probably pushing his agenda a bit much.

Well, whatever. According to the picture, he looked like a hobbit that had never seen the light, so that might be "Yoiingi"'s only shot at ever getting anything close to a date.

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Yoiingi: wow m happy

Yoiingi: man he so secy

Yoiingi: yeag I knowe right

Yoiingi: is iy jusy me or are thede sending our

Yoiingi: shir you rigjt

Yoiingi: og no

Yoiingi: yoi ever hearsd of The Bear Bse befire why dint we

Yoiingi: ehy dint we is grreat

Yoiingi: meer ther 8pm tomorrrrow

Yoiingi: hoe many r in tomorrrrrriw

Yoiingi: obviously ia 6

Yoiingi: ohb man thankd bri

Yoiingi: bro

Yoiingi:yeag brp

Yoiingi: wouldbt it be funntb if thst guy reslly matvhed eith us

Yoiingi: shit bri

Yoiingi: og shit

Yoiingi: pretend thay never hsppended.

Yoiingi: please

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So apparently, Yoongi drunkenly planned a date with Jimin at the bar the next day.

Yoongi had a massive hangover he hoped he could cure, but being under the hot sun chopping trees and all, probably not.

First impressions had gone up in smoke, but maybe Yoongi could make up with it with enough shaving and moisturizer.

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Jimin: um yeah sure

Jimin: 8pm at the bear bar got it

Jimin: see you

Jimin: I have a kink for recycled paper

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Jimin facepalmed. Thank God the last time Yoiingi was too stoned to read what he said.

That wasn't his real name though, right? Yoiingi?

Well, he better not bail on the date tonight.

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Jimin tentatively stepped into a bar, one of the seemingly untouched wooden panels creaking beneath his feet to announce his arrival. The men inside all looked like a cross between chronic alcoholic and bodybuilder- he was starting to regret this.

Where was the weirdass pale gremlin, he was scared.

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"Jimin-ssi? That you?" A husky scratchy voice sounded from the back of the bar and when he looked, it really was Yoongi.

Only he could be a lumberjack and have the same skin as Snow White, he supposed.

Ah, it appears he shaved last night after the embarrassing picture he took of himself on the platform.

"Hi, Yoiingi-ssi. I'm Jimin, have you ever thought about sustainable logging?"

"Hi, Jimin-ssi. I'm Yoongi, please forget everything that happened last night, Hoseok and I were drunk."

They stared at each other with bugging eyes.

"Sustainable logging?" Yoongi questioned quietly.

"Yes, sustainable logging! Marking only specific trees to make sure it doesn't cause that much harm to the environment. The falling of a huge tree could even cause the smaller trees and plants surrounding it to be crushed and to die, and even animals too! The logging industry is going on an incline, sure, but the profits of companies such as yours suggest otherwise." Jimin's word vomit wouldn't stop. As a passionate forest advocate, he constantly memorised new facts about forests to demonstrate how bad deforestation was.

"Welllllll… I guess we do that? We take only smaller to medium sized trees in clearer parts and we replant saplings after that. 10 saplings for each tree."

"Oh. Wow. Then, what do you think about your job? Still earning the same pay as you used to, or is more of your salary taken to buy those saplings? A large problem about sustainable logging, just like sustainable anything, is about the additional costs of maintaining the environment, balancing the supply of trees available with the growing demand due to the increase in population size worldwide."

"Um, I used to work in a team of 6, but they were slowly removed so that there's only my friend and I left. We still keep in contact though, and they're all doing well. Being a lumberjack is really dangerous, what with being in the wild generally alone and all."

"What are your favourite parts of the job, then? Since you're here despite the danger and all."

Yoongi considered this for a second.

"I mean, though it sounds ironic since I am essentially ruining the environment as a job, I really love the nature here? We already pre-mark trees that cause minimum damage and all, and we constantly see beautiful flora and fauna. Since we got smartphones, Hoseok-ah and I have been taking some pictures of it. Here!"

Jimin has to admit, this guy isn't as bad as he originally thought.

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It's almost 12am when they leave the bar, Yoongi going back to his hole in the woods and Jimin taking the train back where he came from.

Both have a phone number in their hands and a name in their heart, though.

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After a few weeks, Jimin finds out none of his job opportunities worked out, and decided to go down to the woods to do research on animal behavior instead.

If Yoongi constantly enthuses about sustainability to Hoseok now, it's no one else's business.

Yoongi went from timber to tinder and back, and apparently now he's living with his sex-on-legs-but-adorable-mochi boyfriend in the woods.

(And his best friend.)

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"Wait, I have no idea why I never asked, but is that really how you spell your name? Yoiingi? Like, is it just pronounced weird?"

Yoongi groaned while Hoseok cackled in the background.