All that matters
The boys went to a room in the middle of the hallway. CAP gently knocked.
“Come in~” A tinkling giggle came from the other side of the door.
CAP nodded to his friends and went inside. L. Joe clenched his fist so hard that his knuckles turned white. Chunji nodded at him, “Just keep your cool and follow my lead.” L. Joe stiffly nodded.
Chunji straightened his jacket and entered, “Hello, noonas~” His expression changed 180 degrees. He was dripping with cuteness and affection, something L. Joe would never do even though his life was in danger.
“Omo, it’s Chunji~” The ladies giggled. They were in their early 30’s and wearing the most expensive outfits from brand name companies.
Chunji sat next to one woman with long, wavy hair, “How are you, noona? I missed you~” “I missed my Chunji, too.” She patted his cheek with a high-pitched giggle.
L. Joe just stood there, feeling out of place.
“Oh, who is that?” One woman asked. Another gasped, “Is he new?! He’s so handsome and rugged looking!”
CAP nodded at L. Joe with a look.
L. Joe awkwardly sat far away from a woman with short hair. She laughed and waved, “Don’t be shy. Come to noona.” L. Joe stiffened. *Noona? You’re the age of Saerom’s mom. Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?* “Come on!” Her voice became louder. Chunji shot him a look and a nod. L. Joe sighed and scooted closer. She looped her arm through his, “Omo, he has nice arms.”
“Let me feel them!” The other ahjummas pinched his arms.
L. Joe yanked away and almost bit their hands off.
“Yah!” Chunji shot him a warning look. He leaned in and hissed, “You’re supposed to do anything they want! Don’t anger them or it backfires on you!”
L. Joe just glared at him *I can’t believe you all like doing this.*
The women laughed. “He’s one of those rebel ones! How cute!”
“Jagiya, go and sing! I came all the way here from Kangnam just to hear you sing!” One lady pouted.
“Neh~” Niel gave her a cheesy smile and went up. The women expectantly looked at him. With his incredible voice, Niel sang a ballad. The women squealed and clapped loudly.
L. Joe crossly sat there, not willing to cooperate.
“Hey, new boy.” The woman next to him called. He looked at her.
“What’s your name?” She asked.
“…L. Joe.” He used his nickname.
“L. Joe. Very nice. Sounds very American.” She giggled. He rolled his eyes.
The woman opened her Marc Jacobs wallet and pulled out a wad of bills. She waved it with a sultry look, “Why don’t you drive me home later, L. Joe-shi?” L. Joe almost snapped at her but received a look from Chunji. ‘Take the money.’ He mouthed.
L. Joe felt his pride crumbling. He couldn’t do this even if his life depended on it.
But he could if yours did.
*I need the money to pay for tomorrow’s gas bill or else Saerom is going to be cold.*
L. Joe finally took the money, “Yes…noona.”
L. Joe finally arrived home long past midnight. He had driven the lady to her mansion then used some of the money she had given him to catch a bus back home. L. Joe shut the door with a heavy sigh and turned around. He blinked in surprise when he saw you laid out on the cold ground with your head resting on your math homework.
L. Joe softened *She was waiting for me.* L. Joe quietly walked over. He pulled the pencil out of your hand and set your math book and notebooks on the table.
L. Joe unfolded the blankets and placed the pillow in position. He carefully rolled you over onto your back and slipped his arms underneath you. Then he lifted you up and gently laid you down on your blankets.
You murmured ‘oppa’ a couple times before falling into an even deeper sleep.
L. Joe draped the cover over you and sat down. He watched you sleep and felt tired but happy.
L. Joe reached out and softly stroked your cheek *At least we have a roof over our head. I can pay the bills and you won’t have to worry about anything. You’ll be able to enjoy senior year and keep that smile on your face. In the end, that’s all that matters, right?*
^ Back to Top