Author: nicotine

I came out without even submitting my resignation. I should have handed over the work, but I didn’t want to. Even though I hadn’t received any handover myself, I didn’t feel any loyalty to Jung Yiyeon’s company. Quitting on the spot, I lost enthusiasm for everything. It was only natural, as I hadn’t deeply thought about and quit something. It was just that I couldn’t bear to see Jung Yiyeon anymore. At the moment I decided to quit, I didn’t even think about my bank balance. I felt a bit nauseated by my impulsive, irrational, and emotional actions, even though I said I wouldn’t regret it. Surprisingly, though… despite deciding to cut off the emotions that made my heart flutter, pound, and yearn for her every time I saw her, I was doing fine. It wasn’t as difficult as I had expected, even though I sometimes, or rather frequently, thought about it. It was just a faint sense of emptiness that I felt in the midst of my impulsive, irrational emotions.

Last night, I slept well and, for the first time in a while, indulged in sleeping in. Granted, I woke up before ten, but still. After pondering what to do at home, I ended up unnecessarily showering, wearing jeans and a shirt instead of a suit, and putting on sneakers. The weather was pleasantly warm. Walking under the scorching sun, which was my preference, was not my style, so I stopped by a bookstore, bought a book, and randomly found a seat in a nearby coffee shop. While savoring an Americano and munching on a club sandwich, I unfolded the book and read in the leisure I hadn’t experienced in a while.

At one point, the once-famous writer’s outdated novel seemed to belong to the ambiguous genre of coming-of-age stories. At the age of 30, reading a coming-of-age story would only allow me a brief time travel to the past, and I doubted I could empathize with the protagonist. However, it was well-written, making it easy to read, and by the time my Americano had gone cold, I was flipping through the last pages of the book.

Leisure… Everything was fine, but I had disgustingly nothing to do.

In the theaters, there was a buzz about a Hollywood superhero movie that seemed to pull everything from rehashing to the marrow. As I didn’t have much of a preference for movies, I entered the theater without hesitation. Come to think of it, I had never watched a movie alone. There were always people inviting me to watch a movie, and even when I came to watch a movie, I preferred charming the person next to me rather than watching the movie itself.

Jumping around, rolling, shooting beams, creating chaos, meeting a woman, falling in love for a night, and rescuing the kidnapped lover as a hero. In the end, the movie concluded with rescuing the lover and punishing the villain. Throughout the movie, my only thought was that sandwiches wouldn’t do here; I should have bought popcorn and cola. Even after the movie ended and I stepped outside, the sun was still shining brightly. Summer was approaching, and the days were getting longer, but being unemployed was a hardship. With plenty of days ahead without much to do, what should I do on this long day? Why don’t I have anything I want to learn or dreams to fulfill? Thinking I should search for something at least, I stared blankly at my phone and let out a sigh.

A whimsical thought crossed my mind. It was just last Monday when I had a delightful dinner and spent a dream-like night with Jung Yiyeon. At that time, I was deluded by the grand illusion that Jung Yiyeon also loved me. I never imagined that I would experience such a disappointment and end up unemployed.

Today was only Friday. Perhaps, if I hadn’t confessed to Jung Yiyeon, we might have spent this weekend together. If I had handled the crisis better when I exploded over Min Seo-won’s bracelet on Wednesday, maybe.

In the fleeting moment when I was lost in futile and foolish thoughts, a phone call interrupted. I answered the phone in surprise.


-Why haven’t you been answering Jaeoh’s calls?

The one bluntly asking me that was Siwoo, a guy I had never received a call from in my entire life, who was part of a gathering we had a few days ago where we drank together.

“I didn’t even know Jaeoh called.”

-He said you quit your job.

“What? Jaeoh said that? That guy.”

-He’s busy, so he couldn’t keep in touch. He asked me to tell you. Send a message to Jaeoh.

“Uh, okay.”

-And come to our store.

“What store? Did you quit your job and start a store?”

-Yeah. I’ll give you the address; just come. Ending the call.

Click. He abruptly hung up after laying out what he wanted to say. Then, a somewhat ominous message arrived. The message contained an address not far from here, and at the end, it said, ‘Make sure to contact Jaeoh.’

Like Siwoo said, there were several missed calls and messages from other people on my phone. Irritated by the constant calls from the secretariat due to my abrupt resignation, I had put my phone on silent, a fact I just remembered now. If I hadn’t been absentmindedly looking at my phone, I wouldn’t have known about Siwoo’s call.

Amidst the accumulated missed messages from others, Jaeoh’s calls and messages were piling up endlessly. Ignoring all the other messages, I sent a message to Jaeoh, claiming I didn’t notice the calls because I was watching a movie, and I chuckled to myself like a madman. It felt absurd that I, who never missed a call by keeping my phone on silent, had done so now.

Without much thought, I headed to the address Siwoo had sent. There, a recently established Italian restaurant chain was prominently advertising with vigor. Even for someone like me, who was ignorant about real estate, it seemed to be a lively and well-located place, with the store looking quite spacious.


“Yeah, you’re here.”

His slender body was neatly clad in a white shirt, and the black pants were complemented by a stylish apron from Galsong, creating an impressive look. Siwoo had a quite neutral and androgynous vibe, almost as if the clothes were chosen to match his type.

It had been quite a while since we knew each other. We had crossed paths once in a passing connection. Still not particularly close, we had reconnected through a gathering centered around Jaeoh. Interestingly, when we first met again, I couldn’t remember Siwoo properly. The next encounter happened after Jaeoh left Seoul and moved to Busan. About a month later, Siwoo suddenly contacted me, and we met for sex. It was nothing more than a release of desire without any emotions or significance.

“Why did you open a restaurant?”

“My parents pushed me into it. They thought it’d be better to run my own business to avoid trouble if rumors spread at work.”

This guy was born with a silver spoon, a damn lucky guy. A filthy envy-inducing guy.

Siwoo, who looked pretty and had a slim figure, had often been misunderstood as gay due to his physique and appearance since childhood. Whether that misunderstanding turned into truth at some point, I didn’t know, but Siwoo had no reservations about coming out. It wasn’t easy, but after numerous conflicts, he had fortunately gained acceptance from his parents.

“Why did you quit?”

“… Just because.”

“Are your parents landlords? Did the company shut down so easily? Are you planning to switch to another job?”

“I just wanted to take a break for a while.”

“People say good things about selling properties. Better than a dog. You’re twenty-nine, right?”


“Thirty already. Well, you started working at a young age. But do you have plans, or did you quit for some reason?”

“Well, I’m not nineteen. I’m thirty. Do you think I’ll live like this forever? I quit yesterday and took today off, just a day.”

Why does this guy have such a big mouth? Don’t people refrain from saying such things to others these days? Irritation surged within me.

I had no immediate intention of working. Handling tasks, answering calls, scheduling other people’s time, planning and executing someone else’s work, working as a chauffeur, overtime… Even if I were to find employment again, utilizing my experience to become a secretary, the thought of being a secretary, even temporarily, was as detestable as catching a cold. I didn’t want to be called a secretary. I was thoroughly disillusioned.

“Hokyung and those guys from prestigious business schools are also going crazy about entering the hotel industry, you know? Let’s play for just one more day, just one more day, or you’ll really hit rock bottom. Do these kids nowadays not know what qualifications are?”

A guy who knew nothing about the industry I was in was talking a lot. His speech wasn’t refined, making it even more unpleasant to listen to. This guy had always been like this. That’s how I knew he was someone I shouldn’t be considerate of after one night together.

Of course, from their perspective, they probably thought the same about me. Anyway, from my standpoint, Siwoo’s nagging was unbearable. Especially on a day like today. I wasn’t in a bad mood; I really wasn’t. However, for some reason, when he touched on it, my irritation swelled, and spikes of annoyance surfaced like pufferfish spines.

“Ah, I don’t know. If I can’t stand it, Jaeoh might hire me.”

That was truly a remark spat out in annoyance. It was something Jaeoh had actually said before.

But with that rash remark, Siwoo’s face stiffened. He spat out a word mixed with curses with thick lips like squeezing out a grudge.

“You damn bastard. You’re a truly rotten piece of shit.”

Ah, come to think of it, all these people knew that Jaeoh liked me. What I just said was a slip of the tongue.

“Why did you block Jaeoh, what do you want to do?”

“Well, I made a mistake. But don’t you think you’re meddling too much?”

“Even if I worry…”

“Who asked you to worry? Is it me? Do you think I’d dismissively say I want to play without thinking? There’s a reason for everything, and I have my own circumstances.”

I didn’t know how much contempt Siwoo held for me, but at least I had always kept my private life and work strictly separate. Even if he said something without knowing that, it didn’t make me feel bad.

Finally, Siwoo shut his mouth. However, that silence was truly just for a moment.

“Why did you quit?”

This time, I was the one who chose to stay silent. I wasn’t originally the type to disclose personal information. Perhaps it was because I couldn’t fully immerse myself in the gay world due to being bisexual. No, honestly, I had been keeping a distance on my end.

I feared that someone might hold a grudge and out me, so I never revealed the exact details of where I worked, under whom, and in what position at which hotel. Only Jaeoh knew a little more about me.

I had never properly talked about my personal information from the beginning. I hadn’t even told others about my home. I didn’t want to be excluded from this damn society. I liked men as much as women, yet I hated being outed. No, it was frightening. Some people led lives where they could be resented for such matters.

So, I chose to keep my mouth shut. Although the number of words I spoke decreased, the relationships I could form became superficial. As someone who wasn’t originally seeking deep connections, I didn’t feel regrettable about it.

However, it seemed to be a problem for others.

“You really don’t say anything. What do you think about the people around you?”

Siwoo, who may not even know his real name, or if it’s his real name, doesn’t know his last name. In my opinion, you should have been a teacher. How can your tone always sound so reprimanding?

Table of Contents
Reader Settings
Font Size
Line Height

hope you enjoy my translations. please do not share on SNS otherwise all of my translations will be taken down. thank you!

Comments (0)