Into Your World (Angel) - EXO-K
I’ve hated the hospital ever since I can remember.
The smell made me nauseous, the bright, fluorescent lighting made me cringe, and the of dying patients, mothers in labour, and crying kids gave me restless hours of sleep as a child.
I can’t remember how I got there, or what exact age I first checked into the hospital, but I remember why I was there.
At a young age, I developed the cancer of the blood. I did not have any recollection of my parents whatsoever, so my childhood was just one big blur.
Of course, I didn’t quite know what my illness was back then. I was only six, after all. Nurses would gossip and stare at my condition in sympathy. I would be scared and lonely most of the time.
But the worst pains were both physical and emotional. Therapy and thick needles were filled to the top with medicine that hardly worked. It was so agonizing that I had lost the will to live.
Imagine that. Losing the will to live at age six. How pitiful.
Throwing up for a day without anything but a few minutes of body pains and dizziness would be a lucky day for me. Those days, I was thankful that there was nothing more.
When I first came into the hospital, I only had memories of crying. No one was there to support me or help me except a couple nurses and a few doctors that were constantly on-call. I had never asked for this disease. I had never wished for it. So why did I have to suffer so much as a small, innocent child?
My hair would fall out and I would occasionally wear bandannas on my head to cover up the baldness. A very kind doctor at the hospital would go out with me to the hospital’s gift shop and buy them for me.
If it was because of sheer pity or genuine kindness, I would never know.
Every night, I would look outside the glass window from my bed, looking out wistfully into the outdoors. I wanted to experience nature. I wanted to feel the touch of snow melt onto my fingertips. I wanted to rake up the leaves and jump into the piles during fall. Feel the soft petals of flowers and the hum of buzzing bees. Swim in the water just once…
But mostly, I wanted to make friends like any other kid at school and play together at recess.
However, I was locked.
Cooped up in that cage of a hospital in a comatose state, not even able to do anything unless I had a nurse or companion by my side.
Then one day, I had decided to finally leave the hospital and venture outside.
Although my heart seemed weak, my instincts told me to go for it.
I listened to my instincts.
With much thought on that bright sunny morning, I leapt out of my bed and yanked the tubes and IV needles off of me, sneaking silently out of the room.
When a doctor spotted me, my eyes widened and I pushed past a couple of nurses, running as fast as I could for the first time in my life.
“She’s gonna give out!”
I looked over my shoulder as they continued to tail me. I felt afraid… so afraid… But I just knew I had to run. If I was gonna die, I wasn’t gonna die in the hospital. I would die trying to escape this jail of mine… Die yearning to experience the outdoors at least once…
When I reached the outdoors, a swirl of trees surrounded me. I winced as I tripped and fell down onto the soft patches of grass outside. I went tumbling.
Ouch. My fragile body felt like it had just broken into a million little pieces.
I laid down there, frozen for a second. *Is this it?* I wondered. *Is my life over so soon?*
Then a voice chortled, “Is she dead?”
“Hush, you.” Another snapped.
“She’s… pale. Very pale. Should we call the doctors here?”
“Are you kidding? And risk our identities? No way.”
I closed my eyes shut, trying to catch my breath. *Were these the nurses? They sounded masculine… Maybe male nurses? I had just gotten to the outdoors! Just what on earth was happening? Was this the end? Sayonara… Goodbye, cruel worl—*
“Are you alright?”
My eyes slowly opened as I let in a quiet gasp. My eyes refocused, then everything became clear.
Right in front of my very own eyes was the most beautiful creature I had ever seen. He looked no older than me. Possibly an oppa. The sunlight that shone behind his head made it look like he was glowing. No—he had a halo.
His graceful features and soft inquiring smile stunned me. His voice was melodious and gentle. He looked so amazing, so gorgeous, so… beautiful.
He couldn’t have possibly been a human being. He was too perfect.
As I gaped at him, he tilted his head to the side in confusion with a hint of puzzlement on his face. His pouty pink lips quirked in a way that made him look oh-so-adorable.
People said that children had puppy love when they were young, but this was an exception. It was truly love at first sight.
“Haha, hyung. I think you surprised her.”
“That’s enough, you guys. Let’s leave them alone for a second. I think I hear the ice cream truck coming.”
“Ice cream?! Let’s go!” The voice whooped and the faint sounds of feet stepping on grass filled my ears. It sounded exquisite.
And then it was only me and the beautiful boy. It felt like a dream to have him smiling at me so softly.
Just then, the shrilly noise of doctors and nurses calling out my name from the hospital’s doors broke the nice silence. A copper taste filled my mouth as I jolted up. I didn’t want to get caught.
The boy merely glanced over to the hospital workers that weren’t too far away and then looked back at me.
“Are you from that hospital?” He questioned simply.
Scared to go back, I nodded. He noticed my stiff, grim expression as his facial features softened ever-so-slightly.
I heard footsteps and shouts of my name. They were coming closer. I shut my eyes tightly while the boy stared at me.
“Song Naeun! Naeun-ah!”
Then in one swift movement, I was in the arms of something warm. The boy was hugging me. I was in his arms, and his scent smelled of sweet honey and fresh nature. It was irresistible.
I looked down, past his skinny shoulders. The tops of buildings and big grassy areas stunned me. We were flying, and the scenery was breathtaking.
*But how…* I looked up to see his face beaming at mine and something white and feathery behind his back. I gasped as he moved us down to sit on a big tree’s stable branches and touched them.
Wings. Pure white, soft like silk, and feathery.
“…Are you scared?” He looked at me very cautiously, as if waiting for me to break down or scream in fright.
I didn’t answer his question. Of course I was at least a bit nervous, but mostly amazed and excited.
“They’re beautiful…” I murmured, “Your wings…”
He gave me a look of surprise and shock. The surprise then melted into a gentle expression. He lightly d my pale cheek.
“…You’re the one.” He murmured. “It’s time.”
I stared at him, bewildered, “Huh? For what?”
This time, he ignored my question, but continued, looking out into the horizon. “Do you dream of getting better? I mean, being cured?”
I paused and followed him, looking out at the sunset too, “…Yeah. I do.” A moment of passing silence with nothing but the soft flutter of the breeze. “I don’t want to go back to that hospital. I never want to go back.”
“Because I’m scared of dying.” I turned to him and said truthfully. I didn’t know why I was confiding so well to a stranger, but he made me feel calm. Safe.
The boy looked at me with a sorrowful expression, lightly touching my bandanna that covered my bare head. I probably looked sickly, weak, and pale at that moment. I didn’t know why he was looking at me with such caring eyes. I looked horrendous.
“You’re a human. You probably have dreams to fulfill…” He muttered thoughtfully, flashing me that dazzling smile again, “You’re much more important in making a change to this world than I am…” He whispered the last part.
I didn’t catch his last sentence, but I didn’t ask him to repeat it again. Just staring at his face made me ignore everything else.
He put a soft, milky hand on the top of mine. I blushed at the gesture, but kept quiet.
“Tell me… What’s your name?”
I looked at him for a second before opening up my lips to speak, “…Naeun. Song Naeun.”
The boy looked pleased, “Naeun-ah, hm? Pretty name…” I flushed with pleasure.
Then in one fluid movement, he squeezed my hand. A bright beam of light shone as it filled my body. It felt like warm honey, oozing around slowly in my insides.
I felt stronger, tougher, livelier…
And then, the light dimmed down as I opened my eyes. I was lying down in the soft patches of grass that I fell into before. I touched my once bald head, now full of thick, dark hair.
The angel boy wasn’t there. He had disappeared, leaving only a single one of his wing feathers in my hand. In the skies, the first beautiful sunrise I had ever seen gleamed brilliantly.
My angel had finally taken away the thing that I had suffered so much for:
Leukemia—the one thing that had made my childhood life hell.
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