01. The Devil Has a Name
Every time you hear his name your blood runs ice cold. The hairs on the back of your neck stand straight up. Your heartbeat accelerates and your blood pressure rises. It takes everything in you not to scream at the top of your lungs.
You hate that just the mention of his name leaves you so on edge. He doesn’t even have to hurt you physically anymore. Just his name alone is a reminder of all the awful things he’s ever done to you.
And there’s a lot of them. Too many to count. You’ve lost track.
It’s been years since the last time you saw him. Almost a decade has passed since your fateful encounter with that ornery boy. You called him Kookie back then when you two first met as kids, but now you call him by a different name. You call him a monster.
A lot of years have passed since he earned that awful title, but you know all too well that time doesn’t heal all wounds. Some cuts are just too deep. Some wounds can’t be fixed with a simple band-aid or a sweet kiss to make it better.
But then... sometimes it doesn’t matter what you do to patch or clean the wound. Sometimes nothing helps and the wound festers until it’s completely infected. Not because you don’t take care of it, or neglect it, but because you don’t want it to heal. It’s a known truth that nothing will heal, if you don’t want it to.
Because you want to keep feeling the pain. You want to remember who hurt you... so they can never do it again. You use your scars as reminders so you never forget where they came from. Or who they came from.
Not all scars are visible to the naked eye. Yours clearly aren’t. They mark your entire body from head to toe. Starting from your brain where you store your memories, all the way to your heart where you store your pain. You have so many scars and most people don’t even know they are there.
Only certain people who’ve been hurt the same way as you have can see them. Only people who share your pain can see the scars your trauma has caused.
People like Min Yoongi.
From the day you two first met he could see that faraway look in your shy eyes. It was unmistakable. You could be staring right at him, feigning interest attentively, but Yoongi could tell your head was somewhere else. He knew because his head had been too. At least at one point in time. Not so long ago.
But things were different now. Totally different.
He can’t allow himself the luxury of living inside his head when his body is stuck here on Earth. Not when the world you guys live in is so dark, deranged, and dangerous. If your head is in the clouds for too long, your body will end up buried six feet under. Either in a casket or rolled up in a rug. Yoongi prefers neither of those options, as do you, but both of you know that you can’t escape your fate. If Death comes knocking, someone will have to answer the door.
Your family did. So did his.
But your family did more than just answer the door. They invited Death in and made small talk with the dirty motherfucker. They even offered it something cold to drink and a place to stay the night to avoid the harsh weather conditions. They welcomed Death into their home unknowingly, offering it so many things in little acts of kindness. Little did they know it didn’t want something to drink or a place to lay its head. The only thing that bastard wanted was them all dead and he got exactly what he wanted that horrible night.
He left with all their lives... except for yours.
What made you so special? Why didn’t he take your life too?
You were the sole survivor that night and it has eaten away at you every day since then. Every single day for the last ten years. You haven’t gotten over it yet and you know you probably never will. The endless hours of counseling and therapy you were forced to partake in by Yoongi tried to convince you the opposite of that.
“You’ll forgive yourself and the assailant one day. In order to find peace, you must let go. Time will fix what your own heart cannot. It will get better...”
That was all total bullshit and that’s exactly what you told your counselor during your last appointment three weeks ago.
You were tired of hearing the same shit from different people, especially when they were licensed to deal with this sort of thing. The truth is that no one knows how to handle grief. There’s no how-to guide on dealing with trauma, but your counselor seemed to think there was. He gave you a twelve step process to start and you were done by step two.
Nothing helps you anymore... at least nothing that’s considered good or acceptable by any means. At least drugs can’t judge you. They can help you forget too, but unfortunately, there are still some things that are burned into your memory.
Like the fact that tomorrow will mark a decade since your family was brutally massacred while they were sleeping in your childhood home.
You were the only one who got to wake up that morning and what you woke up to was worse than any nightmare you’ve ever had. You went to bed with everything and woke up with nothing. It was surreal how fast you went from being on top of the world right down to the pits of Hell.
He took everything away from you so why couldn’t he just take your life too? You didn’t have anything else to live for after what he did.
Except for drugs and revenge.
That’s what keeps you going these days, the stimulants, and knowing that one day you could possibly knock on his door the same way he’d knocked on yours to return his gruesome gesture. You wouldn’t kill his entire family though. Only him. You’re completely fucked up thanks to him, but you’re grateful he hasn’t turned you into a complete monster... yet.
There’s still time for that though.
Still, despite the hatred that courses through your veins whenever you think of him, your body consistently shuts down every damn time you hear his name. It makes you feel like you’re still the same scared little girl you were back then. Maybe you are.
“The Mayor of Seoul—Park Won−soon—says The Jeon Charity has received an amazing amount of funding from donors and is expected to give every cent back to the community in numerous ways!” A news anchor chirps from the luxurious living room you’re currently standing in, smiling into the camera fraudulently. You can feel her gaze through the television screen, but you aren’t paying the woman any attention. The mention of his surname is the only reason you’re even listening to the broadcast in the first place. “It’s no secret eligible bachelor Jeon Jungkook has had endless success in every business venture he’s made in his career so far, but even so, he still remains humble and generous as he branches off into his first non−profit organization to help develop our beloved city. He’s always been a role model to our community, but he’s starting to become a hero too!”
“Yeah fucking right...” You mutter underneath your breath, rolling your eyes at the television. This is why you don’t watch the news. It’s all a bunch of fake bullshit that mindless people eat up with a silver spoon around the clock. At least you and Yoongi can see through it. The news isn’t about being informed anymore. It’s clearly only about being influenced.
How can people be fooled so easily?
Jungkook is a wolf in sheep’s clothing!
A vicious and dangerous wolf that can kill dozens at a time. Maybe these people have never seen him show his teeth or unleash his real personality. But you have and you will never be able to forget it. That image of him will haunt you for the rest of your life just like it has for the last ten years. No amount of counseling or prescription drugs will ever rid your brain of that awful memory.
And yet the media praises him like he’s God and treats him like a king. However, Jeon Jungkook, is far from being a god. He’s more like the Devil and the only kingdom he rules is the underworld.
Not for long though.
Min Yoongi is making sure of that and you’re going to do everything in your power to help him accomplish that goal. It’s time for someone else to overthrow the kingdom and capture the crown.
Preferably with the old king’s head still attached to it.
“That’s enough of that.” A husky voice says from behind you as the television screen abruptly turns black, cutting off the woman’s voice as she gushes on about Jungkook.
She was beginning to sound like she was falling in love with him for God’s sake and the sudden twinkle you caught in her eye supported that notion. Ugh. People like that make you sick. That poor, misinformed woman was starting to worship an evil man she didn’t even know. You’re glad someone shut the program off before it made you throw up, but another part of you wants to finish the segment on Jungkook. Just in case some useful information pops up.
“Hey!” You turn around quickly, seeing Yoongi himself standing in the grand foyer with a remote in one hand, and a sleek suitcase in the other. He carries that thing everywhere, even when he isn’t going on or coming back from a trip. You’ve always wondered what he carries in that thing, but your mind doesn’t wander too far. Despite your curiosity, you know there are some things you don’t need to know. What’s in that suitcase could be one of them.
It wouldn’t be the first time he’s kept a secret from you.
You go quiet when you look up at Yoongi, his pretty brown eyes narrowed in disapproval. He doesn’t like it when you obsess over Jungkook. He doesn’t think it’s healthy, but a part of you has always wondered if it really has something to do with jealousy.
Oh, how silly of you.
As if Min Yoongi, leader of the Min family, who ruled over the west quadrant of Seoul, thought of you in that way.
Ever since he took you in, he’s treated you like nothing more than a sister. He lost his family just like you lost yours. He’s given you food, clothes, shelter, protection, and even a new family over the last several years. It’s greedy of you to want something more, but you always have, and a part of you is terrified you always will.
He’s tried to give you everything Jungkook took away from you. But it’s never enough. You always crave more and more to fill up that empty hole deep inside of your chest. Nothing ever fills that hole though.
Nothing except for...
You don’t even have to say it out loud.
Yoongi’s name is always on the tip of your tongue and at the center of your thoughts anyways. He’s the only person you probably think about more than Jungkook. Somehow that’s both incredibly beautiful and terribly sad at the same time. You think about the man you hate just as often as you think about the man you love...
It’ll be even more sad when you finally accept that he doesn’t love you back. At least not in that way. However, you can’t stop thinking that maybe... just maybe... one day...
Maybe it’s the fact that you both lost your families to the same miserable man. You too share grief and somehow that’s been more intimate than sharing a kiss. Which the two of you never have. Not even once. Hell, he hasn’t even given you a hug in all the years you’ve known him.
At most he’s maybe given you a pat on the back here and there. Or a pinch on the cheek, which can’t even be counted, because your cheeks are so puffy that everyone tries to pinch them. That is, until you punch them in the face, but even so. Yoongi’s gotten away with it a few times.
Only because he’s Min Yoongi.
Only because you love him.
That’s about as far as physical gestures between the two of you go. It’s no secret that he keeps his distance from everyone. Perhaps he’s scared of losing everyone he cares about again. You know you sure are.
And that includes him.
So, you’re careful not to ask for too much when you know there are some things he’ll never be able to give you. That includes peace, and perhaps, his heart. You’re very grateful for what he has given you... you just need to work on accepting what he can’t.
“Hey...” You say again, this time a lot more softly. Your gaze moves from the floor where you see him standing, slowly moving up toward his face. Yoongi isn’t looking at you. He hardly ever is. Not anymore anyways. It seems that, as the years go by, it’s getting harder and harder for him to look at you. You’re falling apart by the very seams he stitched when he tried to fix the broken little girl he found at the orphanage.
Although he doesn’t look at you much anymore, you can’t keep your eyes off him.
He’s wearing a suave black suit with a smooth gray dress shirt underneath. Not a wrinkle to be seen by the naked eye. He’s ready for business as per usual. You don’t think you’ve ever seen him in anything other than a suit. Same goes for the other men in this mansion.
They all dress for success, and judging by this massive and architecturally beautiful estate, it’s easy to think that all of you must be successful. In reality, it’s all Yoongi’s blood, sweat, and tears that have built this empire. Everyone else just keeps it from crashing down.
“I thought I told you to stop thinking about Jeon.” Yoongi clears his throat dryly, as if saying the man’s name has left a lump in the back of his throat. It probably has, but he doesn’t let that stop him. Unlike you. “Let me and the guys take care of it.”
“Tomorrow will be ten years since it happened.” Your voice cracks towards the end of your sentence, which Yoongi clearly picks up on. You’re not looking at him to notice the way his eyes soften just the slightest bit when he sees you struggling. He’s not very emotional, he can’t afford to be in this line of work, but every once in a while, his heart breaks a little more. He often wonders how much of it is left after all these painful years. His family took most of his heart with them when they died, but the little piece that was left, has been breaking away piece by piece since then. “I’m not sure if I can wait any longer.”
“You know it’s been longer for me.” Yoongi doesn’t say that to undermine you or invalidate your personal feelings. In fact, if anyone knows how you feel, it’s the man standing right in front of you. But he also knows a lot more than you do. It’s not as easy as you think it is and it never will be. “These things take time. Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
“But it burned in one and so will he.” You reply bitterly, your tone catching him by surprise. “I’m not waiting for another man to come to my rescue when it was a man who hurt me to begin with. I don’t need your permission. I never did.”
No one speaks to Min Yoongi like that— in a sour or condescending manner—and gets away with it.
Anyone else would be on their knees apologizing to him right now. Whether it had to be done willingly or forcefully didn’t matter, and if they didn’t apologize, they’d end up missing a few teeth. You’re the only exception. And for what reason? Even Yoongi didn’t know the answer to that.
“Jeon will burn in the fiery flames of Hell one day, that’s guaranteed, but if you want him set on fire today, then maybe you should be the one to light the match.” His cold stare bores into yours finally, but he isn’t looking at you the way you wish he was. There’s anger in his dark eyes, but beneath that, there’s nothing but pity. That’s somehow worse than the look of indifference he usually has toward you. “If you storm into his compound without a plan, the only person getting a one-way ticket to Hell will be you. Because he will finish what he started. He always does.”
“That’s why he needs to be stopped!”
“And he will be.” Yoongi cuts you off with an arched eyebrow. It’s not raised to be questioning, more like it’s there to be authoritative. He’s above you and that means he has the final word. You have to listen to him, or you risk losing the only place you’ve been able to call home since yours was burned to the ground with your family’s bodies still inside of it.
Not only did Jeon Jungkook cause your family to be murdered, he made sure the whole thing was covered up. All the evidence was burned to ash. So not only did you lose your family, you lost your home, and everything else that was left inside it.
He has taken everything away from you.
And you can’t go a day without being reminded of that. If it’s not your own bitter resentment and lingering sadness that brings up his name, it’s the damn television personalities or the fucking radio station hosts. They treat him like a celebrity, so how can Yoongi expect you to ignore him? He’s everywhere you go.
All the time.
His brown doe eyes are still shining brightly, full of life and a lust for adventure. Your eyes are filled with animosity; cold, empty, and void of any emotion apart from hatred. His lips still pull at the corners to reveal a charming smile, but you can’t even remember the last time your smile was real. He still wakes up with a family every single morning. You haven’t done that in almost ten years.
Jeon Jungkook has everything he took away from you and you’re hellbent on making sure he goes down with nothing.
You’re going to take him down the same path he took you; the path to Hell.
And if you have to walk this path alone—for the second time in your life—then so be it. You’ve already done it once before. You don’t need Yoongi or anyone else there to hold your hand.
“I’m calling The Counselor.” Yoongi says decidedly, making the hairs on the back of your neck stick straight up. Oh no. Not him. “You need to be checked out again.”
“But nothing.” He cuts you off with a slight frown, turning his back to you. You’re reminded yet again that you’re not the one making decisions around here. This is Yoongi’s world and you’re just lucky he lets you live in it. “Get ready.”
“I’m not leaving.”
“We’re going...” He replies in a cold whisper that makes your heart skip a beat. “Even if I have to make Hoseok put you on a leash and drag you to the car.”
“Oh, I love dogs!” Hoseok—one of Yoongi’s most devoted and loyal men—says in a cheerful tone, holding up a pink dog leash that’s embellished with crystals. You have no idea how long he’s been standing there, but that’s the least of your worries right now. “Let’s get this show on the road. Be a good girl, ____. You’ll get a treat later.”
If it’s up to Hoseok, you’ll be locked in the dog house tonight, without so much as food or water. He seems kind, his dark eyes always sparkling with remnants of happiness, but it’s all just a disguise. A very convincing one, you might add, if you hadn’t seen him take his mask off one too many times.
Hoseok may look like sunshine yet he is full of nothing but irrevocable darkness.
Suddenly, you realize that you’ve been ganged up on. And not in a good way.
Yoongi is blocking the exit to your right and Hoseok is guarding the one to your left. All you want to do is run up to your bedroom and lock the door behind you. You’ll do anything to avoid seeing The Counselor, but you don’t realize there’s worse people in the world.
And they’re all around you.
You turn on your feet quickly, in an effort to escape toward your bedroom, but you don’t get very far. Instead of running toward the elegant staircase, you’re running into the ripped arms of a man with very broad shoulders. He looks like he should be a quarterback on a football field instead of a henchman for a crime family.
In the blink of an eye, he has you in his firm grasp. Judging by the size of him alone, it’s clear that he could crush you with little to no effort. However, he decides against it, and holds you hostage in a bear hug instead.
What the fuck?
“Kim fucking Seokjin...” You mumble underneath your breath, not even bothering to look up at your captor. His Hulk−like figure betrays him once again. There aren’t too many men with shoulders wider than a yard stick around here.
“Aw! Did you miss me?” He coos into your ear softly, his warm breath hot against the nape of your neck. At least his breath smells nice, which is more than you can say for most men you know. “I can’t blame you. I missed me too.”
Of course, he did. You’re in the arms of a complete fucking narcissist after all. A sociopath narcissist—who’s probably murdered more people than Jeon Jungkook and Min Yoongi combined—to be more precise.
You let out an exasperated sigh, giving up the last bit of willpower you possess, as you finally realize one little thing.