chapter one

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"mom, i'm gonna be okay." kim taehyung assured his worried mother, finally putting the last of his shirts into the small carry-on he had recently bought. light from his bedroom window flooded the room, making dark shadows reflect onto his tan bedroom walls.

"are you sure? college can be scary, hun." taehyung's mother was known to worry about her son, but she was usually never this frantic of something. her wrinkles showed prominently on her skin and the roots of her hair were starting to grey, making her appear older than she was. 

taehyung stopped zipping up his carry-on to look up at his mother, a warm smile evident on his face. "the only scary thing is imagining staying home." taehyung chuckled, closing the suitcase and zipping it fully. "it's only half an hour away, mom. i'll be good." he reassured, giving his mom a soft look. 

"sweetie, relax. he's gonna be fine." taehyung's father stepped into the doorway, making both taehyung and his mother look back. his father was tall and composed, almost opposite to that of his mother. a slight frown tugged at his lips, one too small to be seen by the naked eye. his father never showed his emotions, he insisted he just wasn't capable of doing so. even so, taehyung could sense his father was upset about him leaving, he knew his signs of weakness.

"i've been dreaming of going to college for years. seriously mom, i promise i'll be alright." his mother sighed and let her face drop from the frown, making the wrinkles she previously had disappear into the crevices of her skin. she ran a hand through her hair, her fingers delicately spreading her hair back.

"i'm sorry, taetae. i'm just worried for you." taehyung chuckled softly at the childhood nickname, wishing he didn't have to leave his family behind. he opened his arms and wrapped them around his mother, making a soft smile grow on her lips. she was warm and inviting, allowing taehyung to fully melt into her embrace. she hugged back gently, her husband still watching from the doorway with a growing smile.

"make sure you keep your grades up. if i hear you're flunking college, not having enough data will be the least of your problems." taehyung's dad laughed as he stepped forward and joined the hug, wrapping his arms around his wife and son protectively.

"i promise to both of you i'll work my ass off. now seriously, i should've left like twenty minutes ago."


the drive to his campus was short and sweet, complete with taehyung nearly screaming along to the lyrics of his favorite song at a stoplight. he arrived a little later than planned, due to having to deal with his mother, but didn't stress too much over it. he had an immense amount of time, since his first class wasn't until the afternoon the next day. 

"fuck." taehyung cussed under his breath, seeing that he had failed to realize he would need to bring all of his belongings from his car to his dorm alone. he almost instantly regretted telling his dad he would be fine on his own, and that 'he was a man now, he can carry some boxes'. he groaned internally, pressing the up button on the elevator after he entered the apartment complex on campus. 

soft music played from the elevator speakers as he waited. he let out a deep breath, content with the feeling of independence. his parents, mainly his mother, had always watched over his shoulder since he was a little boy. this was his first time completely alone in the big, scary world she had warned him about, and he couldn't be more excited.

the elevator door opened with a quiet ding, pulling him from his thoughts. he walked out, taking in the buildings décor with a deep breath. he knew the college dorms would be beautiful, but hell, not this beautiful.

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