safe and sound
title: “safe”. adjective. meaning:
protected from or not exposed to danger or risk; not likely to be harmed or lost.
series: safe and sound, part 02 of 04
pairings: taemin/jonghyun, taemin/gwiboon
genre: romance, angst, humor
word count: 8190
warnings: underage sex, alcoholism, violence, implied dub-con, minor character death
previous chapter: un
taemin comes out of the washroom rubbing his hands, the feel of cold water on his skin refreshing after the sticky mess he’d made with the book store cafe’s cinnamon roll. he shoves them in his pockets & drops his head as he makes his way towards the exit. he’s a paying customer but it still feels like they see what he is & he hasn’t yet come to terms with it. halfway out, a man pops out of an aisle & nearly knocks him down. they stand there, stunned, blinking at each other, & the other smiles in a way that is far too bright for a cloudy afternoon.
“hi! do you happen to know where the manga are? i got turned around & now i’m a little lost.” very lost, taemin thinks, since they’re standing in the religious section. he swallows at the thought & frowns because he’s clearly not a clerk & the other man is still smiling at him. but he knows where they are & he knows what it’s like to be lost: he has no reason to say no.
“over here.” a tilt of his head to the left as he turns & heads down the aisle, avoiding the bibles that watch him passively from the shelves. they reach the display & he gestures to the selection.
“awesome. do you have any recommendations?” taemin pauses, startled by the request.
“uh, yeah. this one’s pretty good.” he pulls a familiar title off the shelf & hands it over to the stranger. the other inspects it closely, flipping through a few pages, snapping it shut & looking up at taemin with that same smile, the one that’s a bit too bright.
“thanks, i think i’ll give it a try. can i buy you a drink?” it’s such an abrupt shift that taemin’s not sure he’s heard right.
“a drink.” he’s pointing to the cafe taemin was just in & still smiling. taemin shrugs & says, “sure”.