"You. Are. Perfect."
The tone of the woman's voice is so harsh, almost desperate, that Jungkook thinks she might start crying. Since the moment the four of them walked into the shop, the shop owner, Mrs. Go, has had this kind of crazy gleam that makes Jungkook want to turn tail and run as far as his legs can take him.
He's standing awkwardly beside Taehyung and a little behind, using the taller male as a semi-barrier between him and the crazy-eyed shop owner who's captured Hoseok.
The older woman is tall and skinny, her long, bony face reminding Jungkook of an ancient horse. The thinness of her form is clad in a billowing pinkish-purple dress, the kind of dress that hangs loose and big like the sagging sails of a ship. Although there's a remnant shine of kindness in her eyes, its been overcome by a kind of warm craze as she scans over the faces and figures of her new employees.
Her pink-painted, glossy fingernails are digging into Hoseok's face as she holds him between her hands, tilting the length of his face this way and that way so she can see all the angles and lines. "Just look at those cheekbones! And those big pretty eyes."
Those big pretty eyes of Hoseok's are rolling in fear like prey caught in the claws of a hungry predator. Hoseok keeps glancing at Jimin where he stands with his hip up against the counter, pleading for freedom through his gaze.
But, just as Jimin sighs and begins to step in, the lady suddenly releases Hoseok and darts for the place where Jungkook and Taehyung stand.
Oh, crap. ReTReAt.
He can't help it. It's pure, self-serving instinct that prompts Jungkook to shove his hyung forward and into the waiting arms of the lunatic.
"Ah," says Taehyung as he's enveloped into her voluminous magenta dress, his tall frame disappearing into its folds. Jungkook gulps at his sudden absence, now scared of sinking into all of that loose material and never finding his way out. His mind is flooded with visions of endless pinkish folds of fabric covering everything he can see, trapped in an endless, inescapable maze.
They've already lost Taehyung.
He says a quick prayer for the older man, then runs to stand protected beside Jimin.
The orange-headed man finally does step forward, fishing his ferret out of the woman's dress and drawing him back to safety, all the while armed with a polite smile. "Mrs. Go, thank you so much for giving them jobs here. We really appreciate it."
His cute cheeks squish up into a sweet grin, a sure way to calm any raging creature; no thing, animal or plant, human or machine, can resist the charming pull of Park Jimin's smile.
Jungkook's learned that by now.
Mrs. Go nearly melts beneath the onslaught of radiant loveliness shining out of the smooth planes of Jimin's face. "Of, you sweet thing, you know I'd do anything for you." She pauses, letting her gaze once again rove over the men. "Besides, I needed a healthy dose of testosterone around here. We'll probably have a line going out the door now. Your boys are doing me a favor."
Jungkook blushes under the weight of Mrs. Go's eyes, wishing helplessly that Y/N was here to hold his hand. He misses her smell and the warm comfort of her presence; two things he desperately needs to function in a crowded public area.
But, he's going to do this regardless.
He's going to become he own person and her equal, and stop being a burden.
Just imagining their lives from now on sends a thrill of domestic excitement up his spine. He can see them together in the early morning, waking up with soft kisses and touches before moving to the bathroom together to get ready. He wants that, and breakfast side-by-side, and a soft goodbye kiss as he heads off to work and she to school.