33.

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Jungkook had his arms around Taehyung's body as the two reclined on his bed, wrapped in each other's embrace. The elder of the two rested his head against the Prince's broad chest, occasionally tracing mindless patterns against his arm.

The raven-haired kept his gaze settled upon Taehyung, a fond smile etched over his lips. He only admired his beauty from afar, pressing his lips gently against the top of his head every few seconds or so.

"Jungkook?" Taehyung piped up, breaking the comfortable silence lingering in the air between the pair. "Have you ever thought about running away?"

The Prince raised his brows in curiosity at what prompted the strange question, although he was quick to answer nonetheless.

"Yes. Many times," he said, adjusting his position into one of more comfortability against the headboard of his own bed. "Yet something seems to stop me all the time."

"Which is?"

"My duty. I can't just leave my country for my own selfish needs. Yoongi has absolutely no intentions of being King, so what would happen if I left?"

Taehyung remained silent at his answer, his own heart deflating slightly at Jungkook's response. There was a vague feeling of hope settling within him, as he often wondered if it would be possible for the two to ever leave the palace in order to avoid the presumptuous marriage due to occur between Jennie and Jungkook, however the Prince's reply seemed to push the thought aside rather quickly.

"Why?" the younger of the two asked suddenly, his brows furrowing. "Would you ever run away?"

"No. I've had no reason to in the past," Taehyung said, shaking his head. He pulled the covers up to his chin, feeling strangely cold, despite being pressed up against Jungkook's body, which was relentlessly emitting a sufficient amount of heat. "Except now, maybe."

The look from Jungkook was enough for Taehyung to continue explaining, as the Prince was evidently confused as to what Taehyung was trying to say.

"I mean that I would run away with you," he revealed, although his voice quietened slightly, immediately feeling rather embarrassed. "To avoid everything that's happening with Jennie. Because I already know that if the wedding does proceed, I can't stay any longer."

"Taehyung, why would the wedding ever happen? I won't say yes. It's as simple as that," Jungkook stated, however the irony of the situation was almost mocking him.

"Kook, don't you understand? You can't be the King and reject the possibility of marriage at the same time. It's one or the other," the servant said, a look of exasperation washing over his facial features. "Denying reality would be stupid. Whatever's going on between us won't last, Jungkook. We both know that."

The Prince felt his heart quicken at the boy's words, causing him to immediately sit up as Taehyung also pulled away from him, looking at Jungkook dead in the eye. The tension between the two was almost tangible, as the pair knew they were in a complete mess.

"I don't understand what you're saying. Are you asking me to reject my place as heir? You know I can't do that, Taehyung. It isn't a possibility," the younger said with sheer irritation.

"I'm not saying that. I'd never ask that of you. But I'm only saying that if this is only a temporary thing happening between us, then I can't carry on with it," Taehyung admitted, attempting to ignore the feeling of pure sadness enveloping every inch of his body. "I'm falling in love with you, Jungkook, and it's only been two weeks. I can't continue this," he continued, gesturing between the two of them. "Knowing that it'll end at some point. I just can't."

Jungkook visibly swallowed the lump in his throat, which gradually grew bigger after each of Taehyung's words. He couldn't quite believe what the boy was saying.

"Taehyung, listen. I swear I'll think of something to do. I won't marry Jennie. I simply refuse to," the boy said indefinitely, grabbing onto the servant's hand in the process. "I can't just watch you walk away. Don't throw away whatever we have between us like that, Tae. Please."

Taehyung simply stared at the Prince, watching the way his eyes widened with desperation. He was conflicted, although he knew the thought of pushing Jungkook away was irrational. He knew he hadn't the ounce of willpower to do that, since his growing feelings for the latter were increasing day by day.

"Fine," he mumbled, defeat laced within his voice. "But I swear, Jungkook. I won't do this to myself for long. You have until the day after the engagement ball, okay? It's either one or the other. You can't have both."

"I know, baby," the Prince responded gently, leaning forwards as his breath fanned against the servant's face lightly. "I know."

The Prince pressed his lips against Taehyung's for a few brief seconds, before pulling away, opening up his arms once again. "Now come here," he said firmly, tugging the boy towards him.

Taehyung immediately complied, unable to stay away from the Prince. It was two days away from the ball, to which the King would announce the public engagement and force both Jennie and Jungkook to exchange rings.

The sheer thought of that destroyed Taehyung, however the boy knew he had to be patient until then, since he couldn't expect too much from the Prince so soon.

A/n: I'll update a few times today bc I legit just wanna get up to the part where all the action happens sO (;

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