Reunion Chapter 45

Author: nicotine

It ended faster than I expected, however, it was still an organized procedure. Yet, I couldn’t remember what happened very well. How would I be able to put an end to our deal before the promised time?

When I suddenly looked up, I found myself pressing the password to the gate of Jang Yoonsung’s apartment. The door didn’t open because the number I pressed was not correct. While standing blankly, I tried to recall the password but a hand popped out from behind and swiftly pressed a couple of numbers. Those were the numbers I had to remember.

At last, the door swung open and the man standing behind me began to urge me.

“What are you doing? Go in.”

I turned my head and looked at him briefly before stepping in. Seeing that he was wearing light clothes, he seemed to be somewhere else before coming home. The stinging smell of cigarettes passed through my nose as if to tell me what he had done outside. Sure enough, he held a cigarette case which I had seen a couple of times before.

“I thought you quit.”

It seemed to be a long time since Jang Yoonsung smoked. I didn’t know what it was like at work but I never saw him go out and smoke. Jang Yoonsung took a few more steps without answering my question and stepped in front of the elevator. It wasn’t until I stood next to him that I got a reply a beat late.

“I almost did…but I didn’t hear from a certain someone who left because something came up suddenly. He didn’t even answer my calls.”

“You called?”

Come to think of it, I completely forgot to turn off the silent mode on my phone after I talked to him. The screen I looked at after a long time was barraged with missed calls and messages I couldn’t check. The clock in the top corner of the screen was telling me how much time had passed since I had been in my reverie. No wonder Jang Yoonsung sounded so subdued.

“Sorry, I didn’t know because it was on silent mode.”

“What happened? Why didn’t you look at your phone?”

“Well, it’s just that…”

What did I rehearse on the way back? I couldn’t prepare a word to tell Jang Yoonsung in the short time I came here. Just in time, the elevator rang as if to help me. I closed my mouth and stepped forward first as if I had been interrupted by the elevator.

“Did you wait outside because you couldn’t reach me? I’m not a kid and I can come by myself when the time comes.”

“Is that so?”

Jang Yoonsung pressed the button on the top floor with a casual touch and responded lightly as if he had heard something unreliable. Leaning on one side of the elevator, he watched the elevator doors close before he asked again as if he was really curious.

“Did you really come when the time came?”

It was a word that stung me like a thorn. It was difficult to answer readily when he asked, adding a tone, “Is that so?” at the end of it. When I hesitated, Jang Yoonsung laughed as if he knew it. He opened the cigarette case over and over again as if it wasn’t pleasant to wait for someone who didn’t contact him. He continued the meaningless gesture of fumbling with the case. I didn’t know how many cigarettes were in the case originally but there was only one left now.

“But I came today anyway.”

I quickly pointed to the empty case with my chin and tried to change the topic, wondering if he would answer roughly or ask another difficult question.

“There’s only one left.”

Jang Yoonsung opened the case again and checked inside as if he didn’t notice it before.

“Hm, that’s right.”

Suddenly I remembered his father smoking from a few years ago. The sight of a man with a dry and fierce face who used to take out cigarettes which he didn’t touch usually and smoke them when he felt uncomfortable. It was quite strange that these rich men who had little resemblance except for their height and cold-looking impression, shared that trivial habit.

When the elevator opened, Jang Yoonsung moved first this time. Was it so uncomfortable for him to lose contact with me for half a day? If I say he wouldn’t wait like that anymore, would the last one left in the case burn like the others? I didn’t know whether it was a good or a bad thing that there was one left. However, there was no need to worry about such a thing because Jang Yoonsung threw the cigarette case he was holding into the trash can as soon as he entered the house. As he implied that he wouldn’t wait for me from now on.

“Did you have dinner?”

“Huh? Yeah…I ate it a while ago.”

It was a lie but I didn’t feel like eating something right then. Jang Yoonsung, heading to the kitchen, naturally stopped walking to hear my answer.

“With whom?”

“A friend.”

In response to the easy answer, Jang Yoonsung looked at me with his mouth closed. I quickly added because I was afraid I would hear him calling me a good liar.

“I’m going to wash up.”

Jang Yoonsung seemed to wonder what I was up to outside. However, when I looked worn out, Jang Yoonsung seemed to swallow his words for now. His glare followed me at every step.

“Right. I’m going home tomorrow.”

I thought of something I couldn’t say before and stopped when I was about to open the door. I didn’t intend to come back to the living room after washing up so I held the door handle and spoke as if I was informing him.

“You said you would go there the day after tomorrow.”

“Gunwoo is busy that day.”

“Okay, then. When are you coming? If you are not taking the car, I’ll come to pick you up.”

Jang Yoonsung looked disappointed when I said I would go there a day earlier but he couldn’t stop me. Gunwoo is my only family and he knew what it meant. However, it was more difficult to answer when he asked me when I would return rather than saying not to go.

“I don’t know. You don’t have to pick me up.”

Jang Yoonsung stepped forward at the ambiguous answer and met my eyes. A careful touch wrapped around my wrist. It seemed like he was trying to appease me and holding me back so that I couldn’t go out.

“It sounds like you might not come back.”

After that strange call that was made during the day, Jang Yoonsung also seemed to have felt some reluctance. I didn’t mean to, but if I wanted to I could. I thought I could go back now. Jang Yoonsung didn’t find his memory and I didn’t get caught. We didn’t whisper love nor we wrapped our bodies together. Nothing happened so I felt I could go back before our reunion.

“I mean that you don’t have to wait for anything.”

I felt fortunate that Jang Yoonsung threw away his cigarette. If he said he would wait outside smoking, I might have added, “I’ll come back on my own.”

Jang Yoonsung curled his hand tighter when I tried to pull back my arm.

“Hakyung.”

Jang Yoonsung called me with a serious tone. Only then did my eyes wander around, not knowing what to do except to turn to the owner of the voice.

“Something happened outside, didn’t it?”

Repressing his exasperated voice, Jang Yoonsung asked.

“It’s not because something happened…”

Jang Yoonsung chewed his lips in dismay. No matter what I said, Jang Yoonsung seemed unlikely to believe it. But there was no other way. I didn’t dare to tell him the truth now nor the confidence to deal with it afterward.

“Sungwook hyung called me yesterday but I didn’t go. So he hurriedly hired a part-timer and he said he was good at what he did. I suddenly felt anxious. I was afraid I would lose my position to someone else. I didn’t want to get used to this kind of life.”

Jang Yoonsung’s head tilted sharply. I knew you wouldn’t believe it. Even if what I said was true, Jang Yoonsung would not have easily understood. He would feel I was hanging on to such a job. So I purposely made such an excuse. Just to let him know that the world between him and me was different.

“Why worry about that? I will…”

“Why should I receive it?”

I answered coldly because he easily said he would take responsibility. Jang Yoonsung’s eyes became fierce little by little.

“Okay. As you said, you would give it to me because you like me. What about me? Why do I have to receive it? It’s just a debt for me. I hate to be in debt. I guess you forgot, but that’s why I’m here. To pay for my life. But I can’t do it anymore.”

“You…”

Jang Yoonsung was about to call my name again so I quickly continued.

“I’m really…”

I had to finish talking because it wasn’t easy. I couldn’t bear to say another word because it felt like a thorn was stuck in my throat. After licking my lips several times, I continued.

“I don’t want anything from you.”

Jang Yoonsung would have understood even if I said this. I twisted my arm out of his grip and added some words.

“Whatever it is.”

Jang Yoonsung’s eyes, which had become fierce as if he was going to get angry, sank coldly. I thought it would have been better if he were angry. I had no choice but to roll up my shirt as if I was going to take it off.

“If you feel it’s unfair then rather just do it.”

Jang Yoonsung didn’t have the personality to do anything like that but I thought it wouldn’t matter even if he did. I paid off my debt so there was no other excuse left to not break our relationship.

However, the hand holding on to the hem of my clothing couldn’t do anything but hesitate on my chest. It was because the person whom I thought would be angry at this point was just watching me with a clear stare.

When I looked up while he stopped moving, Jang Yoonsung opened his mouth.

“Do it.”

Jang Yoonsung said something again when I blinked at the short words that made me think I heard him wrong.

“Do more, Hakyung.”

The hand holding on to the hem of my clothing fell off. It was a voice that didn’t make me dare to raise his anger anymore. Jang Yoonsung stretched out his hand and opened the door behind me. I moved my stiff head to see the room and Jang Yoonsung’s face alternatively.

“This is the last time I will cut you some slack. I won’t put up with it next time.”

Those words made me walk into the room as if I was possessed by something.

“Go on.”

When I turned around, Jang Yoonsung made a short greeting and pressed the pin inside the door to lock the door. Jang Yoonsung was seen turning around through the slowly narrowing door. There was a heavy sound like the sound of a heart dropping.

Jang Yoonsung was filthily good-natured.

Jang Yoonsung wasn’t going to harm me. Why did he lock the door? The locked door wouldn’t open unless I pried it open.

I stood at a distance and looked at the closed door that was closed neatly. I could hardly hear a step. I felt like apologizing for my wrongdoing. I kept thinking of his voice dripping with pain.


Translator’s Note: Thank you for reading! I’m trying to catch up on chapters so that I could get to my other projects quicker!

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nicotine

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Comments (1)

  1. Thank you for another chapter!!! Im no good with stubborn people like Hakyung, even though I do care about him and know he means well. I truly wish him happiness but sometimes I think about the fact the the novel would probably be only three chapters if Hakyung wasn’t so scared and stubborn ㅠㅠㅠㅠ I guess that’s the whole point tho. I just wouldn’t have so much patience as YS LOL. I feel like he has to go through so much to see any vulnerability from HK ㅠㅠㅠㅠㅠㅠ Must be love I guess