Gradation, Part 3.5 (drabble) gra·da·tion | \ grā-ˈdā-shən , grə- \
Definition: 1a: a series forming successive stages 1b: a step or place in an ordered scale 2: an advance by regular degrees 3: a gradual passing from one tint or shade to another
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Pairing: JJK x reader
Genre: AU; mature content; Best friend!JJK; best friends to lovers; fluff; angst; slow burn; series
Word count: 1.8K+ words
Warnings: childhood memories; mentions death of a character (not major, though); super soft JK; baby JK and baby YN; marriage; long-term relationships; engagement; OC is left at the altar; lots of fluff; excessive angst; thirsty thots; smut; feelings of sadness and depression; anxiety; lots of crying; excessive cussing; some alcohol consumption; psychotherapy; some light physical threats but nothing actually happens; FWB
Summary: On your wedding day, your fiancé leaves you at the altar. While reeling from the embarrassment and heartbreak, your best friend, Jungkook, wants to do everything that he can to help you heal.
A/N: Thank you for all the love you’ve shown for Gradation! I’m still writing out Part 4 and having a bit of writer’s block--BUT I came up with this drabble instead to get my brain going again. It’s a JJK POV with a mix of various flashbacks. The context is more of a train-of-thought perspective from him. This is in relation to Part 3 so you might want to read that monster first before jumping into this one.
Huge thank-you (always) to my sister-in-angst, @deepseavibez for beta'ing this. Seriously, I don’t know what I would do without your fresh perspective and thoughtful insights. Also--my sis for her offline support and giving me the idea to this because--she was dying to know what JK was thinking! Thanks for letting me bug you while you’re on vacation.
All constructive feedback is welcome!
One more hour until this alarm goes off.
What the hell happened last night? More importantly, why did it happen?
What were we thinking? What the fuck was I thinking taking advantage of her like that?
She said that she wanted to kiss me. Not gonna lie, she looked really hot when we were dancing and man…if it was possible for a dude to cum back to back after watching a woman orgasm, I would have.
Wait--stop thinking about that! You just fucked your best friend. But she gave you consent? It felt right at the time but was it really? Should we have done what we did?
Ah... maybe I need one of her pills to calm myself.
I’ve known her forever. Ever since she found me hiding under the slides at pre-school, she’s been pulling me out of every shitty thing that’s happened in my life.
It seemed like it was just like yesterday.
Why does eomma have to go to work? I hate this school already. All I got was sad looks from grown-ups and weird looks from the other kids talking about how I didn’t have a dad and teasing me because I wouldn’t take off my firefighter hat. They should just all shut up.
“Hi,” a little girl with bowl-cut bangs and pigtails. “Are you playing hide and go seek,” she asks a little too loudly.
“We can share! It’s two slides so we can both hide. I’m small and you’re small.”
“I said go away!”
She was affronted but instead of leaving me there, it seemed like she took it as a challenge. “That’s a cool hat.”
“Your hat. My oppa has one in red and he has a jacket with yellow stripes. He got it from when we went to the firehouse down the street from my house.”
“You live close to a firehouse,” I asked curiously. My dad used to take me to his work all the time to meet his friends.
“Yeah! It’s so cool when they wash the truck. My appa takes me and my brother there to say hi and sometimes, I get to honk the horn. There’s a big playground behind the firehouse and we go and play there after and get ice cream and it’s so yummy. Tell your appa to take you there!”
Wow, she just wouldn’t shut up.
“My appa is gone.”
“My eomma is coming to get me later. Maybe when he comes to get you, she can talk to him and tell him to bring you there.”
“No, my appa is never coming back,” I said lowly as I tried to avoid her eyes and looked at the patch of dirt that I kept kicking around with my shoe.
“Why? Where did he go?”
“Eomma said there was an accident and appa got hurt and now he’s in heaven.”
Unprompted, she hugged me tight. Little did I know, her pet goldfish had also ‘gone to heaven’ not long ago. Her dad explained to her that the fish wouldn’t come back anymore but that it would remember how much she loved and took care of it. And wherever it was, it was up in fishy heaven, happily swimming and watching over her.
“YN? YN? Are you out here?” It was the teacher. Some kids got picked up right at 3PM but since mom had to work late at the shop all the time, I was always the last to get picked up at 5:30PM.
“YN, your mommy is here!”
“I have to go,” she says as she releases me from her grip. I couldn’t help but feel a little sad.
“There you are! Oh, you made a little friend,” the teacher points out as we emerged from behind the slides.
“Hi, baby,” your mom greets you as she walks out into the schoolyard. “C’mon, let’s go! We still have to stop by the big-kid school to come get Hobi.”
She walks towards her mom’s waiting arms but stops short. “Wait,” she says as she turns back to face me. “What’s your name?”
“Jungkook,” I mumbled.
“C’mon, Jungkook,” as she takes my hand in her tiny ones and drags me towards her mom.
“Eomma, can we please, please, pleeeeease take Jungkook to the firehouse next time?”
Her mom is briefly taken aback then her face changes as if she remembered something.
She smiles warmly at me. “Is this your new friend,” she asks softly. “Hi there, sweetheart,” she greets me. “Are you new?” I nodded shyly while she still smiled at me. She then turns her attention back to her daughter, waiting expectantly. “YN darling, we should ask his parents first, okay?”
“But, but, but, he doesn’t have a daddy so can appa take him with us to the firehouse and the park and get ice cream? I don’t want him to be sad.”
“Uhm...” her mom looked apprehensive but the look of determination on her little face made her think twice about arguing with her. She was always strong-willed and once she had her mind set on something, you’d be hard pressed to distract her from it. The teacher whispers something in her mom’s ear and her expression changes from apprehension to compassion.
She crouches down to meet her daughter at eye-level to try and reach a compromise.
“Okay, sweetheart. How about we talk to his mommy first? And if she says it’s okay, then we’ll tell appa. Does that sound good?”
“Yay! Do you hear that, Jungkook? You can come with us!”
“Do you know if his mom is coming soon,” her mom asks the teacher.
“No, she usually comes much later,” she responds regrettably.
“Oh, that’s too bad. We have to leave to pick up my son. Uh--would you happen to have a phone number? Maybe I can give her a call and try to arrange some sort of play date.”
“Yes, I do. Why won’t we come back into the classroom and I can look it up in my directory.”
“Thank you. Alright, YN. Do you want to say goodbye to Jungkook for now while I try to find out if I can talk to his mommy? You’ll see him again tomorrow.”
“Buh-bye, Jungkook. I’ll be back tomorrow,” she waved as she walked back to the classroom with her mom and the teacher.
“Ok. Bye, YN,” I waved back.
She was so loud and had no regard for personal space but she was so nice to me. I couldn’t wait to see her again the next day.
Countless amounts of playdates, carpooling, and sleepovers later, here we were--laying on the same bed together under different circumstances.
She’s seen me through my tantrums and mood swings. She knew how to calm me down and reason with me when I got upset at my mom or if I started acting out at school.
My mom did the best that she could but she was also trying to build a life for us, all on her own.
YN and her family were there to fill those gaps. It’s ironic how close Hobi-hyung and I have become after all these years. He used to only see me as another boy who wanted to take his toys from him and kiss his little sister.
Well...he was eventually right about one of those things.
I sometimes wondered what it was like to kiss her.
I held off asking out other girls during school dances to find out if someone was going to beat me by asking her first.
And sadly, I did. All the time. I had resigned myself to the fact that she was just going to be my best friend...and I was completely okay with that. She was always there for me, always showing me kindness just because she didn’t want me to be sad. I was happy about that.
“Who the fuck does Derek Lee think he is,” she drunkenly asked as we sat in her dorm suite during senior year in college. She was going on and on about some university donor’s kid in her class.
“Who gives a shit? Here, have some more popcorn,” as I handed her a bowl while my brain buzzed with alcohol.
“Do you think I’m cute?”
The question took me by surprise and I gave her a look. “Cute?” I echoed with a mouthful of popcorn.
“Yes. Like, do you think I’m cute like, cute-pretty or just-cute?
“Uhh—I think I had one too many. What’s the difference?”
“Cute-pretty meaning you see me as someone you would date—like a girlfriend-type. S-someone you would make out with. Or cute-cute…like a pet bunny,” she slurred.
“I wouldn’t mind a pet bunny,” I chuckled.
She playfully pushed me on the shoulder. “Come on, Kook. I’m trying to get deep here. What do other girls have that I don’t? You think I look like I don’t want to be kissed like they do?” Her jaw is slack from the alcohol as she asks me pointedly.
We stared at each other for a bit. I wondered if she was actually waiting for an answer from me. And it might have been the alcohol, but instead of verbally responding, something propelled me to inch forward, closing in on her lips.
Her eyes widened and she suddenly pushed me back. “Yaaah...what the hell do you think you’re doing?!”
“I was just—“
“Ok, maybe I should have said that this was a rhetorical question. I didn’t need a demo.”
“Hmm...maybe we should lay off the sauce. Anyway, I’m done with him. First he wants to flirt and leave these cutesy text messages then he ghosts me...” she trails off.
I tried to sleep it off that night when I got back to my off-campus apartment that I shared with Jimin and Tae. I never mentioned it to them but as I laid in bed, I thought: what if I asked her out just to test the waters? Would she say ‘yes’?
The next day, I came to stop by her class so we could go get a snack at the cafe off-campus, as we usually did. And there he was, giving her a kiss and walking off with her shortly after, hand-in-hand. Just then, I get her text telling me that she met up with a friend and that she’ll catch up with me next week.
I told myself that it just wasn’t meant to be. She was my friend, after all and she never stopped loving me or including me in her life. I did the same.
And now, here’s my friend--sleeping peacefully next to me, dressed in hardly anything else but my shirt.
Since the day she walked away with Derek, I hadn’t thought about kissing her for a long time...until last night. And not to mention I got more than what I bargained for.
I was perfectly content having her in my life. When I least expected it, she came to me when I needed someone. She became that person--my person. She put me back together and held me that way until I found my footing.
Now, she needed me and I wondered if I could do the same for her…I wasn't sure but I’d be damned if I didn’t try my hardest.
Banner by the lovely @deepseavibez
Taglist: @deepseavibez; @bts-fic-recs-mess; @mwitsmejk; @jamlessstars; @xhazmania; @xiaoren001 [open]
Jungkook’s holy side profile/∞
this look is one for the books
I’m too stunned to speak
Love you a mio times
jungkook shaking his head lmaoooo
jungkook's face when namjoon changed his rap for bwl 😆 (cr. @honsool)
did y’all hear him ♡
Kookie little smile ♥/∞
Jungkook is hot/∞
a mikrokosmo inspired tattoo would be cute ✨