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"All we had was our dream. We woke up to foggy mornings only All night long, we sang while dancing The endless music sheets." We are Bulletproof : the Eternal

Year 2013. // NAMJOON.

There is a funny feeling when you are about to experience something new, and your body lets you know it in different ways; you start sweating more than usual, your heart feels like it's beating a thousand times faster than it should, and you find yourself looking around, or not looking at anyone or anything in particular even though you know you are not alone. But whether the results are positive or not, we still embrace the unknown because humans are curious and hungry to explore the new and unfamiliar.

Namjoon now gets it more than ever, that funny feeling in his body, that fear but also excitement for the unknown, for letting himself be open to the new and let it change the way he was used to. Because before, he was only a schoolboy, but instead of following the path that everyone else was following, that path that society itself imposes on you since your childhood of going to a university, getting a degree, and then getting a job in order to aspire to a quality of life almost privileged to other realities in other places and people, Namjoon decided to give his all in a small company that was almost bankrupt. It wasn't much, you looked around and saw only small spaces, a room that clearly screamed "alert! Here are some teenage boys" and it seems unbelievable but life is just as hard for a university student with his endless books and assignments as it is for a trainee like him sharing a room with only one bathroom and more people than it should fill that same tiny space full of beds and shoes all over the place.

“2! 3! Bang! Tang! Hello, we are Bangtan Sonyeondan!”

Namjoon saw many people come and go over the course of his years as a trainee, ultimately leaving only six boys by his side and a group of seven young guys with unclear horizons and aspirations aiming big. And as he would rap, as he moved to the music with confidence and the lights on the stage were projected onto him, this innate leader gave his all with them.

The group with a strong hip-hop concept, oversized tees, baggy basketball shorts, and thick gold-coloured chains, was not the typical k-pop group from the very beginning. And despite the doubts about whether or not they would succeed as a band, Namjoon already felt that by taking the first step of debuting, he could at least breathe a little easier than those years as a trainee. The funny feeling in his body did not cease even after he walked off the stage, but there was another, more enclosed feeling in himself: that of relief.

No one told Namjoon that debuting would not ease his path as an artist, nor did anyone warn him of the big changes to his life once he became a member of BTS.

The future is always scary, but it's scarier to regret not pursuing what you want for yourself because it's an uncertain fate. Namjoon knew early on that he didn't want to grow old and feel that he wasted his life doing whatever was dictated by others rather than following his own path dictated by his own desires.

And so, 2013 was different, it was new, and it was the beginning of everything.

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"Some say art is long, life is short But now for me, art is life, life is sports Just do it, uh" Road/Path.

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"From debut until now, we’ve been moving up Our reaching the top is a matter of time The dominos where the first block has been pushed down Yeah, push them down" Attack on Bangtan.

Year 2016. // JIMIN.

If Jimin had to describe those pre-debut years in just one word, he would simply say "exhaustive" as there were many hours of practice and many hours without sleep either because of the self-imposed stress from working hard or because the mind prevented him from resting even in those brief moments of relaxation.

Jimin was always an excellent student and a naturally talented dancer. But difficult times like tonight he recalls the last words of his teacher before he became a trainee for Big Hit; that concerned voice genuinely wondering about his decision to give up being a professional dancer to simply be an idol; "the life of an idol is tough, not everyone is a winner on that path. You are more than good at dancing but the world of idols is completely different from the world of artists like dancers." And even with those words said, Jimin decided to follow another road than the one he was planning to follow in the first place.

How different is the life of a dancer from that of an idol? It didn't take Jimin long to know the answer to that. It wasn't about the differences in skills, it wasn't simply that one dance and the other composes, sings, and perform in front of noisy but equally charming people. No, it wasn't about that. There was something deeper to the difference between a dancer and an idol, and that is, the latter has almost a duty to be perfect in every single aspect, they are pointed out by everyone with good or bad words in the midst of it. A dancer simply dances, he or she doesn't have to worry about anything other than the proper technique, but an idol has to worry about more than the choreography, they have to worry about something even more intense: the hatred towards them.

It is easy to welcome love, it is something that fills your soul and gives you warmth as if you were covered with a thick blanket on a cold winter's day while sipping a hot, sweet drink. What is not easy, however, is to receive the opposite. For that reason, it is inexplicable to Jimin how thanks to his life as an idol, one day when he wins the first Daesang, a great achievement for the band, he feels loved and valued, he finally feels his hard work is paying off. But then that happiness is crushed by people's heartless hatred and prejudice.

And it hurts. Because even if he wants to say "I'm not afraid of them" or "I don't care about their opinions", the truth is different, and that negativity towards them hurts. It shouldn't, but it does.

Life is like a domino, each piece is part of your story, and each fall may mean two kinds of results: you manage to overcome that hatred and move on even if that same hatred affects you, and yes, it may still hurt a little less than before, but it is still there but it doesn't stop you from raising your head high and running towards the finish line. Or rather, it can be a double-edged sword, and instead of being a positive factor, that domino is yourself falling. A fall from which you never get up again.

Jimin is human, every hateful comment towards them, every mocking remark, every block to their careers, and every absurd rumour, all of it hurts. But it also hurts for his body to practice for hours non-stop. And in the same way, Jimin gets up, and every wound heals no matter how it takes, showing that even the most vulnerable human being has the power to overcome hatred with hope, courage, and, above all, love.

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"Even if another winter comes, even if someone stops me, I walk forward We are we are forever bulletproof (Yeah we got to heaven)" We are Bulletproof:the Eternal .

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"Smile, what are you hesitating for. Isn’t it something like this that you wished for Or cry,what are you afraid of Isn’t it something like this that you wanted The life you wished for, the life you wanted, the life you chose, you achieved everything with no regrets"Interlude:Shadow.

Year 2018. // HOSEOK.

The music had stopped, and although there was no longer a melody, you could clearly hear the tiny sobs in such a peaceful but equally dreadful atmosphere. No one spoke, but the tears were there.

Hoseok knew to expect a bunch of feelings together when it came to songs written by Yoongi, and so it was just like that; everyone cried the moment they understood those lyrics were what they were experiencing right then, it was that voice that they didn't know how to bring up because the pain was different from anything they had ever experienced before.

And the tears fell, and then they stopped falling, but the debate went on for months.

Hoseok knew it wasn't luck, he knew that everything they achieved as a group came because of their fans but also because of their own talent and perseverance. Suddenly that small group from 2013 was no longer small, and now BTS was an international group, renowned artists, with thousands and thousands of fans around the world. It was almost impossible for Hoseok to believe all that was going on, but mainly, how the music of a Korean group was played even in a country as challenging as the United States.

There is always a moment in life when you want to give up, and it's not the first time Hoseok has had the urge to throw in the towel and just give it all up. As he was alone, once again he played "Outro: Tear" in the darkness of his room, recalling that dramatic moment when he almost gave up being a trainee; a moment almost like a scene from a movie, Jungkook followed him, begged him, and brought him almost dragging him back to Big Hit.

Hoseok decided to keep trying and not give up. And they succeeded, they won all the awards and trophies they didn't even know they could win before, they broke records, they toured all over the world, they gave so many interviews abroad in one year that they even felt English was already part of their daily routine. They moved lots of people, and they realized the changes and the impact onto others. And everything seemed perfect, they started with nothing, and in the process, they gained a lot to the point of becoming stupidly successful which seemed like a dream; but not everything was perfect because none of them understood until that moment that standing at the top was not synonymous with being invincible to fear. Because there is the fear of failure, but there is also the fear of being seen all the time, to affect with the slightest move you make or say the lives around you. Especially when each detail of what they do or don't do is exposed to everyone in different parts of the globe, regardless of age or gender. They were all watching, and Hoseok felt naked.

The pressure was overwhelming, and Hoseok felt naked to the world.

And like in the beginning, the tears fell. He tried to hold them back, tried to guard the pain because he is J-hope, he is the light on the dark road, but ironic is life because in spite of this, he is also darkness in person for he is not constantly shining all the time.

Holding the trophy in hand, they were at the MAMA in Hong Kong. He tearfully stated, "I was going to cry whether I received this award today or not.... because we have worked so hard this year." And they did really work hard.

In spite of everything, 2018 passed by, and another new year was approaching. BTS was still standing, even though there were times when it seemed like they couldn't go on any longer, they decided to continue on that long road full of surprises that life gives you.

It wasn't time to give up, not yet.

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"Goodbye, to me, is tear Even without my noticing, it comes into bloom around my eyes Words that I couldn’t let out now flow The lingering love crawls on my face" Outro: Tear."

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"It feels like yesterday, but yes, we have grown up Everything good was always for someone else We would lose our voice worrying about the uncertain future We would get choked seeing senior singers perform at year-end award ceremonies. Let’s not forget but keep those pitiful moments" Moving On.

Year 2019. // JUNGKOOK.

2018 had been an intense year, and Jungkook had cried enough, but surprisingly, he still had extra energy left to keep crying.

You see, you don't decide when to cry. It's by nature a momentary occurrence, whether it's caused by something that brought you happiness or sadness. In 2018 Jungkook cried out of sadness but also out of frustration. Seeing those loved ones he considered as blood brothers suffering made him almost forget that he was also in the same situation as them. But it didn't matter, if any of them were hurting, Jungkook didn't even feel his own wound and he would only cry on their behalf instead.

But then everything got better. There were no more doubts, or maybe there were, but not as much as before.

It all seemed so peaceful and gratifying at the same time, even when they appeared to be walking when they were actually running.

BTS traveled from country to country, from city to city; from singing and dancing non-stop until they felt the pain in every part of their bodies. But this was a welcome pain, unlike the pain of the pre-debut years of practice, when all the future was insecure when they didn't know if they would reach their goals as individual artists and as a band as a whole - not knowing whether that uncertain vision would turn into a settled one. For that reason, the post-concert ache was a pain that Jungkook didn't bother him, or if it did, he didn't complain about it. It was a soreness he embraced, because it showed the effort of years of hard training, just as it showed the energy spent in his favourite place and with the people he loved the most: at a concert with his six closest friends and, of course, with Army.

Army are people he treasures each and every moment of his days. They are people who provided him with far more than he ever expected in his entire life. They are the hope he needs to keep going and to remind himself that even if nothing is perfect or the way we want it to be, the point is to enjoy, to be positive, and to face problems in some way or another, but above all, to have no regrets and to live in a manner that makes it seem as if you are floating on water.

Jungkook floats and stays that way. He may sink, he knows that well, but he is confident that he will stay above the surface for a long time, and who knows, maybe he will never really sink and just make it to firm ground, waiting for new discoveries that life has to offer him.

And so, even though he had already cried a lot out of sadness almost all of 2018, he was now at Wembley Stadium, a dream place for any singer, crying out of happiness. But happiness is a word that poorly describes what he was feeling in those moments, as he couldn't even describe his emotions and what he was going through; when he first heard that there was another song playing in the background, he thought it was a mistake, and he instantly panicked, but then he looked at the crowd and saw how they were all singing "Young Forever" as a surprise for BTS. And he cried, but that was okay because crying is not always bad.

Jungkook knew that he would relive that day even when BTS no longer continued as a band, he knew that even in the last years of his life he would sleep, and in his deepest core he would only dream of that and other concerts.

Because BTS is everything to him, but so is Army.

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"I want to listen to your melody, how the stars of your galaxy will embroider your sky At the end of my despair, I found you at last, don’t forget You’re the last reason for me who was standing on the edge of cliff. Live" Magic Shop.

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"I miss you_ Saying this out loud makes me miss you more Though I’m looking at your picture, I still miss you Time is too cruel" Spring Day.

Year 2020. // TAEHYUNG.

The world was at a standstill. 2020 was simply not a good year for humanity, but Taehyung, as well as many others, was able to manage his life even when everything seemed to be on pause. No one expected a global health crisis, but neither did his own group expect to release another album, and so they did. Unexpectedly, without really planning like previous albums. From a challenging year, the album BE was created.

Taehyung would be lying if he denied that he didn't need a break from his daily routine, and although 2020 was a year of absolute isolation, he felt he became even closer to a person he had completely forgotten for a long time: himself.

The vlives were more recurrent, the interactions with the fans were now 100% virtual, but that was no less gratifying than in person, although, of course, they were not the same as being face to face with them. For the moment he could only wait.

After so many times of giving positive messages with his songs, participating in charitable campaigns and deeds, or even sharing his own personal opinions, Taehyung realized that he needed to take time for himself, a time to think a little more about himself instead of always doing it for others, because although it may seem selfish, no matter how many people we have by our side, that support is useless if we do not take ourselves into account first.

Taehyung found himself again. He relaxed but kept on working anyway, and he wrote, and he sang, and he never stopped feeling homesick. Because strangely in the midst of the disruption of everyday life on an international scale, he began to miss the tours and the concerts, the fan meets, and at least to be able to go outside and see streets full of strangers deep in their mundane activities.

2020 was a year of many losses, but he gained more confidence in himself and took a look at the hectic life he was always living; and no matter how much you want to run without ceasing, at some point, you have to pause and take a deep breath in order to continue on your way to the final destination.

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"Another day will come as if nothing happened Yeah life goes on" Life Goes On.

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"I comfort myself now I tell myself that a perfect world doesn’t exist Gradually, I empty myself The huge applause can’t be mine forever I talk to myself, shamelessly, “Raise your voice, to reach farther” Even if there is no everlasting audience, I will sing I wish to remain forever as today’s myself" Epilogue: Young Forever.

Year 2021. // YOONGI.

It feels good to be back on stage, especially when you've been unable to perform for months.

Yoongi is finally back after surgery and a long but properly and deserved recovery.

There, where he dreamed of staying, is where he is now and where he wants to be for a long time from now on. And in the end, even when he is no more on a stage, he will still treasure deep inside him the times he has sung with his six friends all those years before he finishes and says it's over.

Yoongi was not always like this, his idea was never to become an idol, in his mind, he only thought about making music, but seeing himself in front of the cameras now, the yearning to be able to perform in a concert is even stronger than ever. So, in the end, even though his main idea was music production, he knows that being an idol has its downsides but ultimately it was unexpectedly rewarding in many ways.

Music is everything to him. There are people who are lost and don't know what to do with their lives nor what they really want for themselves, but Yoongi is not one of them. Even when he was questioned many times, whether, by people close to him or strangers, he always knew that music is his passion, and music is like his second soul.

Suddenly, even when it seemed like the world was falling apart, Yoongi was optimistic. And that's thanks to his career as a member of BTS, because being an idol changed his outlook on life itself, where once he felt it was impossible to perform in front of many people or was pressured by social expectations to avoid music, now that's in the past; Yoongi has long since stopped being that guy afraid to go on stage, or afraid of expectations. Now he is the opposite, he enjoys every moment performing in front of Army, and he embraces whatever comes in the future because even if it all ends, he gave it his all. They gave it all. BTS and Army gave it all.

That's how even what others see as failure, Yoongi just sees as another step forward instead of a step back, and while some would point out "ha, they didn't win a Grammy!" and even if their fans themselves cry or are angered by it, Yoongi is optimistic nonetheless.

One thing he learned after so many bruises: being overcome by negativity is actually easy but being optimistic is actually hard. Having a positive mind is really a challenge, and Yoongi is almost an expert in challenges. Even as a teenager, he took up the challenge of making music even when he had no one to support him; then he took up the challenge of enduring as a trainee, and soon after, of surviving in the entertainment industry as an idol. What followed was more and more challenges, the challenge to cope with prejudice, the challenge to keep going for the band, for his fans, and for himself. His life was always a constant challenge.

So even though 2021 started without winning a grammy, Yoongi feels fulfilled anyway.

And at the end of the day, he knows that even with his death he will be able to say "I tried, and I succeeded."

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"You were always by my side even when I didn’t ask So don’t ever let go of my hand Because I’m not letting go of you ever again My beginning and my end, you are the one who’s going to witness it all" First Love.

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“Would it be that you’ve changed or I’ve changed I hate even the time that is passing right now I guess it’s us that have changed I guess everyone has changed" Spring Day.

Year 2027. // SEOKJIN.

No one prepares you to finish what you have started, and it is the law of life to bear it but try not to be consumed in the journey. Whether it is because of the death of a loved one, or because you have closed a cycle in your life; Seokjin has never expected it, but the time has come, and although they lasted many years, BTS also had its closure, and the band ceased to actively perform.

There were many changes after 2021, among them the tedious issue of military service, but the contract with HYBE was still in place, and they continued despite all the circumstances. They carried on, and then they stopped.

BTS wasn't the same anymore, but in reality, Seokjin wasn't the same either. He had long ago stopped being a young adult in his 20s, he had long ago stopped not trusting himself; he had long ago stopped worrying. Over the years, one realizes that letting time flow by without thinking too much is a good way to not let thoughts eat you up, to not over-think too much, and to be at peace with yourself.

They went through a lot, from not knowing if they would make it to at least four years of existence after their debut, to wondering how to continue or whether they would actually continue after each comeback; and even thinking that with all they were accomplishing, there would never really be an end to them.

The harsh reality is, there is an end to everything. It's not a very complex idea, it's simple. Life is like this, you born, you grow up and you die. There are no methods to avoid this, so, knowing such a reality, Seokjin tried to make his reality pleasant in spite of these facts.

And just as he once opened up to his fans with "Abyss," he set himself the ultimate task of opening up to everyone on every birthday, and for every new number added to his age, he would release at least one song reflecting his own feelings that plagued him.

It is normal for a book or a film to have an ending, whether it is open or closed, and Seokjin cannot deny the feeling of melancholy or almost emptiness at the end of a story. But Seokjin is the protagonist of his own novel, and he wants an ending that could bring the reader a sense of well-being, even if there is an undeniable feeling of sorrow.

In the end, all will be fine.

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"All the sadness and scars have already become bygone memories So let’s let it go with smiles on our faces, we so fine I’m so fine, you so fine" I’m Fine.

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"Would I have been different if I had chosen a different path if I had paused and looked back What will I get to see at the end of this path where you will be standing" // "I walked through the tunnels without any lights, alone I thought I was alone, but then learned that it was seven Rather than being barefoot, I wear the shoes that are called “Bangtan” and go forward another step, afresh, more" Road/Path.

Year 2039, a gathering of memories.

Twelve years passed by since the last time the seven members of the world's most influential and famous band gave the news that they would no longer be active, and so BTS disbanded but even after a decade, they were still mentioned.

On this special day a lot is said about BTS, how they started, how they went on, and how they ended because exactly 2039 is a special year for these seven Korean men and for those who supported and followed them through good and bad times. 2039 is a big year for BTS and Army.

There are meetings among high school or university classmates, and this is something similar, but much deeper, because the bond we are talking about is more than a formality, it is a bond that was able to last even more than a decade without being broken. And as expected, there were tears, but there was laughter too. And of course, there was the annoying melancholy as well. Opening the time capsule, there was a beautiful purple box, with a strong colour characteristic of BTS and Army, a colour born from Taehyung's random phrase, from a simple "I purple you."

What would you tell future generations? If you tell your story, to what purpose necessarily? There is a lot to say, but it is not always easy to say what we think. It is easy at some point for those who write, including musicians or writers, however you give a message in whatever manner you give it, the awareness that it's something that will always be there for others to see even when you cease to exist in this world. It's incredible, it's fascinating really, that's why giving a message that will remain in the history of mankind must be especially difficult to write.

BTS had its end, but not all endings are sad.

As is the law of life, everything has an end, be it a fictional story or even our own lives; but endings don't have to be sad all the time. There are happy endings, they are somewhat limited honestly, but the possibility exists.

In the purple box, seven personal notes were found, each written by Jin, Yoongi, Hoseok, Namjoon, Taehyung, Jimin and Jungkook, and each of their messages started with "Army" and ended with "I purple you."

At the end of the day, even if the message is long or short, it is the true feelings that matter.

And so, in that year of 2039, even after such a long journey, the seven of them, no longer young boys but older men who have lived a long, non-stop life, came together again.

And together they said for the first time in a long, long time, the words that might be the last time the world will ever hear them spoken.

That 2039, they said out loud again:

“2! 3! Bang! Tang! Hello, we are Bangtan Sonyeondan!”

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_"This place that I thought was the sea was actually a desert, and our second name was “idols from a small agency with no connections” We were cut from broadcast countless times To fill in for someone was our dream Some said we won’t be able to make it big because we’re from a small company I know I know I know as well The days when seven of us tried to sleep in one room The faith we had before falling asleep that tomorrow would be different The mirage of a desert Though I could see its form, I couldn’t grasp it I prayed that we would survive in this desert that felt endless I prayed that it wasn’t reality Eventually the mirage was caught by us and became reality, and the desert we feared got filled with our blood, sweat, and tears to become the sea" Sea._

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You can also read this story on ao3: satans_dolly_boy666
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Sources= https://doolsetbangtan.wordpress.com/ @/doolsetbangtan on twitter. This was written for a monthly event celebrating the lyricism of BTS, more info here= https://wordsbybangtan.carrd.co/ @/wordsby_bangtan on twitter.
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Find me= https://dollhousedolly.carrd.co/#attic

THAT'S IT, BYE!

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