❧ c.vn | the tag
pairing; seventeen vernon x reader
genre; fluff, soulmate!au
synopsis; everyone her age had found their significant other; their soulmates. after a long, painful period of waiting, she found hers.
word count; 1862 words
I entered the studio, trudging lifelessly to my usual corner and letting my bag slip off from my shoulder onto the floor, not bothering to switch on the main lights. The sub-lights situated at the front of the studio mirror and the back corners were already turned on, so I left it as that.
I let out a heavy, tired sigh, plugging my phone into the studio’s speaker, letting it blast my usual tracks as I did my warm-up.
I’m Y/N, 19, from the dance club. I’m from LA, but I moved to Korea because of my parent’s work. I was happy with the change. Life in LA wasn’t exactly smooth. My life was pretty dull, so I put my focus on dance — probably the one thing that makes me feel myself.
I always came to practice two hours early, just to have the space to myself so I could go through my choreography.
An hour later, the metal door of the studio clicked open, and I didn’t have to look to know who it is.
Jun — the club president. Also my best friend. He walked towards the corner where I had left my bag lying, and he put his beside mine. I shot him a weak smile, panting from the hectic choreography I just went through.
“Working hard today too, huh?” he grinned, tossing me a bottle of water as he walked over to the speaker switches, turning it off.
“What else could I do?” I muttered, plonking down onto the floor as I leaned against the mirror. He walked over, sitting beside me with his legs stretched out in front.
“So… You haven’t-”
“Nope,” I interrupted. Jun sighed.
Jun asked me the same question every week — “Have you found him?”
‘Him’ being my soulmate.
I didn’t mind the fact that Jun kept this up for the past year. He knew how emotionally frustrated I would be sometimes, due to the fact that I couldn’t find my soulmate, and he was always there to provide the support I desperately needed. I couldn’t thank him enough for that. I was usually cheery enough though, trying to think positive that I would find ‘him’ sooner or later.
Soulmates were a symbol of two parties being, literally, made for each other. These two parties would have this tattoo-looking thing on a certain part of their body — called Tags. Soulmates’ Tags would match in colour and symbol. Everyone had a different Tag, only two parties on the entire surface on earth would have the exact same.
Tags fade as you age. They usually disappear by the time you’re thirty or thirty-five, and that’s pretty much the end of the world for that person. Once your Tag disappears, the possibility of you being able to find your soulmate drops to nearly a zero. And you would have to live a lonely life. Ugh.
Nearly everyone our age in this school have found their soulmates. Those who haven’t found theirs — you could count their number with your fingers. And I happen to be in that group.
Not having your soulmate with you at this age is probably the worst thing ever. Soulmates would naturally have the trait of being able to cheer the opposite party up, and they would match and fit like jigsaw puzzles that are side-by-side.
I eyed Jun’s crimson Tag peeking out from under his long sleeves on his wrist, and reached out for it. I pushed his sleeve back, my thumb caressing the opaque Tag. Yes, Jun had found his soulmate too, she’s a really nice girl from the art club. I pictured my half-faded Tag in my mind. My Tag was on the right corner of my waist, and I didn’t let many people see it. Insecurities.
“Don’t think about it too much. You’re still young, you know,” Jun comforted. I smiled, not looking away from his Tag.
Jun’s phone vibrated and he unlocked it, viewing a message or something. I didn’t peek.
“Hey, look at this,” Jun said, putting the phone in front of my face as I read the text message sent to him by the teacher-in-charge of the dance club.
There will be a new member joining the club today. He’s a transfer. Do take care of him.
I frowned. New member?
“I wonder who,” Jun said, sliding his phone back into his pocket.
The rest of the members from the club came in over the next few minutes, and soon all were present, except for that new guy.
I checked the clock. Five more minutes before he’ll be checked down as ‘late’.
The door burst open then, and a blonde-hair guy came jogging in.
“Sorry! Got caught up with something,” he said. He looked American. No, he was definitely American. But he spoke really fluent Korean.
“It’s alright, you’re not exactly late. Just come a bit earlier next time,” Jun smiled, before noticing the confused looks on the other member’s faces.
“Oh right, do introduce yourself,” Jun said to the newcomer who had just placed his bag down at an opposite corner of the studio.
“Of course. I’m Vernon, and you can probably tell, I’m not Korean. I’m from New York, but I’ve lived here since I was a toddler.”
Everyone eyed him, waiting for him the reveal the part that everyone was naturally curious about.
Vernon chuckled slightly. “No, I haven’t found my soulmate. Not exactly the norm, I know, but I try not to think too much about it.”
Everyone nodded, some giving him sympathetic looks, but welcoming him warmly. Jun and I glanced over each other, giving each other surprised looks.
We carried on with dance practice, and Vernon obviously had dance background. He followed well and caught the steps quick.
“Ten minutes break, everyone!” Jun announced.
I huffed, sweeping my hair over my shoulders as I walked towards my bag.
“Hey, umm…” someone spoke in English behind me.
I turned around to see Vernon behind me.
“Oh, hey!” I greeted back in English, trying to not be awkward. “I’m Y/N.”
“Nice to meet you, Y/N,” he said. “I was just wondering if you’re American? Considering the fact that you can reply me in English.”
“Yeah,” I chuckled. “I am. From LA.”
I shrugged, picking my bottle up from the floor as I took a sip. “I guess so.”
“And also, if it isn’t too personal..” Vernon trailed off, waiting for permission for him to continue. He knew that I knew what he was going to ask.
I smiled bitterly. “No, I haven’t found mine either.”
He returned the smile. “So we’re on the same page.”
“Yeah, we are,” I said.
“Do you mind if we walk to the dorms together after practice? I want to know you more,” Vernon said hesitantly.
“Would love to,” I said, because I wanted to know him more too.
After practice, I greeted Jun goodbye, and he muttered something like “That guy could be him” before we went separate ways.
Vernon and I started walking towards the dorms, which was just a couple of blocks away from our studio.
“How do you deal with everything? Like, not having your soulmate with you…” I asked.
He shrugged. “I don’t know. It’s irritating, really. But I distract myself a lot by doing things that heavily occupy my mind.”
I nodded in agreement. “I do that too. That’s pretty much the only thing I can do.”
We continued simple talk all the way to the dorms, asking each other questions that weren’t too personal. We matched well.
“What’s your dorm number?” I asked as we approached the dorm buildings.
“Building 2. Room 58.”
I raised an eyebrow. “How coincidental.”
“That’s my room.”
“Wait, it’s possible for guys and girls to mix dorms in this school?”
“Yeah. Kind of,” I said, smiling. “Let’s go!”
Vernon and I grew undeniably close over the next few weeks. He pretty much became my best friend, alongside Jun. We knew pretty much everything about each other after 4 weeks. Everything except for how each other’s Tags looked. I wasn’t planning on showing it to him anytime yet. I didn’t want to have false hopes that he may be my soulmate.
It was already obvious that I liked him. I liked him a lot. So if he wasn’t my soulmate, I can’t even imagine the pain I would feel. I didn’t want to find out his Tag because of this.
I walked into the dorm, just finishing my classes for the day. It was already 6pm, and Vernon was already in the room when I came in.
“Hey,” he greeted, and I smiled as i placed my bag on my desk.
“Can I serious-talk?” he asked abruptly.
“I’m awake enough,” I said. “What is it?”
Vernon quickly pulled me to sit on his bed. We both sat down in silence as I waited for him to speak.
Vernon’s eyes were fixed on the right side of my waist, making me increasingly uncomfortable. Did he see it? There was no way. I always wore clothes long enough to cover my waist.
“I saw it, Y/N,” Vernon said. “Your hoodie rolled up past your waist yesterday night. I climbed up the bunk to ask you something, I didn’t know you were already sleeping.”
I bit my lips, looking away. How was I supposed to deal with this? What if it wasn’t the same as his? What if-
“They’re the same.” Vernon said.
I snapped my head towards him. Did I hear him right?
He rolled up his sleeve on his left arm, revealing his Tag. He’s right. It was the same. His was a black outline of wings, with a turquoise shade surrounding it.
I apprehensively lifted my hoodie, checking the finest details of the Tag and comparing it to his. No mistake — they were the same.
“Vernon!” I exclaimed, jumping onto him, engulfing him in a hug.
He laughed, his arms wrapping around me tightly. I never felt so happy in my life. My heart was thumping. I felt like I was going to cry.
“Just for the record, feelings were mutual all this while, Y/N,” he told me. “Jun told me everything. You having a crush on me, blablabla.”
I pulled away, staring at him with wide eyes, before covering my face and falling flat onto his bed. “I’m going to kill Jun.”
Vernon laughed. “I’d like to see you do that, babe.”
“Y/N~! Wake up!” Vernon called, jumping on top of me. I grunted, feeling air get pushed out of my lungs.
“You’re heavy, you asshole! Get off!” I said, pushing him off. He laughed aloud, rolling off me but stayed lying beside me, one arm draped across my waist.
“Don’t jump on me. You may just break my ribs by accident, you elephant.”
“It’s okay, I’ll be at your funeral,” he joked. I laughed and kicked him off my bed.
“You’re mean,” I said, walking off to the bathroom to wash up. He followed me to the sink, wrapping his arms around my waist loosely as he nuzzled his face into my neck. I giggled.
He looked up, resting his chin on my shoulder, looking at our reflection in the mirror in front of us.
“I can’t believe we’re confirmed soulmates,” he said. “This was all I wished for.”
I smiled and he gently turned me to face him, closing the distance between us as he placed his lips on mine.
We broke the kiss, and I chuckled. “Me too.”