Nearly a month had passed since Jungah had broken an arm. Her arm was healing quickly, but she still had to wear a cast.
It was a typical Saturday night at Zico’s apartment.
After a dinner of shrimp fried rice and chow mein, Block B and Jungah were settled on the couch and watching ‘Running Man’. She bit into the ice cream cone and tried to peel the wrapper off.
Zico took the ice cream from her and peeled the wrapper off for her.
“Thanks.” Jungah accepted the ice cream.
“Oh my God! Did Jungah just say ‘thanks’?!” Kyung feigned shock and gasped loudly, “Either Jungah is dying, or the world is coming to an end!”
“Aish.” Jungah tried to raise her right hand to punch him.
Kyung leaned back and pointed, “Careful! Your arm isn’t completely healed yet! If you hit me, you have to spend another month in a cast! Is hitting someone as cute as me that worth it?! Think well!”
Jungah scowled. *Damn. He’s right.* She placed her arm back down.
Kyung chortled, “Thought so.”
“Shut it.” Jungah snapped.
B-Bomb suddenly sat up, “Oh yeah. Isn’t next Saturday your birthday, Jungah?”
“It’s on Sunday, you idiot.” Jaehyo growled.
Jungah was bewildered that they even remembered her birthday when they couldn’t even remember Taeil’s.
Zico grinned proudly at Jungah, “That’s right. My Jungie Jungie is going to turn 19! She’ll be a woman!” She rolled her eyes, “What was I all along? A man?”
“Probably.” U-Kwon shrugged. Jungah stood up.
U-Kwon recoiled in a panic as he frantically pointed, “YOUR ARM! YOUR ARM!”
Jungah gave him a look and reluctantly sat down. “The day I take off this cast is the day you all die.”
“I hope you never take it off.” U-Kwon shuddered.
“Anyways,” Zico shot him a look then sweetly turned to Jungah, “Should we have your annual birthday surprise party here?”
“It’s not a surprise when she always knows about it.” Taeil chuckled.
“I guess.” Jungah rubbed her temple.
“But we have to have it on a Saturday since I’ll be out of town on Sunday.” Zico said.
“It doesn’t matter. If it’s too much trouble, just don’t do it. Who needs a birthday party?” Jungah shrugged.
P.O. raised his hand high in the air, “I DO!” Kyung threw a cushion at him. “Oof!” P.O. caught it. Kyung laughed and shook his head.
“So birthday party here next week to celebrate your 19th, okay?” Zico smiled.
Jungah nodded. P.O. swooned, “Yes! Party! That means cake, food, presents-“
“Presents? .” U-Kwon cursed. “We better go shopping tomorrow.” B-Bomb said.
“No need. The dollar store is right across the street.” Jaehyo stated.
Jungah pointed at him with a look at Zico, “Can I un-invite him?” He laughed and ruffled her head.
After more bickering, laughing, and joking, Jungah headed home.
Zico walked her out. “Go on in.” Jungah motioned.
“Araso. I’ll see you next Saturday. I need to set up the party stuff so come an hour later.” Zico said. She nodded and turned to go.
“Jungah.” He called.
Jungah stopped and turned around.
Zico stuck his hands into the pockets of his jeans, “If you have someone else you want to invite…go ahead.” She blinked at him. He gave her a small, sincere smile, “I think there’s a friend you have in your mind, right?” Jungah looked at the floor. Her mind immediately thought of Kris.
Zico reached out and lightly tousled her hair, “Go ahead and bring him if it’ll make your birthday more special. I want you to have the best 19th birthday.”
Jungah slowly nodded twice, “I’ll think about it.”
“Go on.” Zico nodded.
Jungah waved and walked home. *To invite Kris or not? Cons: He’ll meet Block B. The twin brats U-Kwon and B-Bomb might humiliate me. Zico will see him and misunderstand. Pros: It’ll make me happy to have him there…* She tapped her lower lip in wonder.
It was Monday break time. Jungah saw Kris at his locker. She glanced around to see if anyone was looking, not that it mattered.
After she had thought about it all weekend, she finally decided to invite him.
Jungah approached him and purposely cleared loudly.
Kris shut his locker and faced her.
She looked away and tapped the metal locker while blinking a couple times. *Why is my face getting hot? Why is my heart racing so fast? All I’m doing is inviting him to my birthday party! That’s not a sin! Stupid Han Jungah! You’re making it obvious! Just speak to him!* He leaned against the locker with an eyebrow raised; “Did you need to tell me something?”
She spun her head and blurted, “How’d you know?!”
“The loud clearing of the throat was obvious. That was meant for it, wasn’t it?” Kris asked with a hint of a smirk.
Jungah’s expression flattened, “Wipe that smug look off your face.”
Kris threw his arms up in the air and shrugged, “I guess you have nothing to say to me.” He turned to go.
“Wait.” Jungah called. Kris halted. A smug smile came upon his face. *Got you.* He pasted on an emotionless expression and turned around, “Yes?”
Jungah tapped her fingers on the locker while avoiding eye contact with him, “What…are you doing this…Saturday?”
“Saturday?” Kris blinked then complacently smirked, “Are you asking me out on a date?”
Jungah rolled her eyes, “No, you conceited . I was going to invite you to my birthday party.”
His smirk fell, “Your…birthday?”
Her ears reddened, and suddenly, she felt very nervous. Jungah her lips anxiously and rubbed the back of her neck, “Yeah, um, it’s already that time of year. My friends, you know…Zico…he’s going to hold a birthday party for me this Saturday, and he said I could invite someone…”
“It’s your birthday this Saturday?” Kris asked, dumbfounded.
“Technically this Sunday. But Zico has to go somewhere then so we’re celebrating ahead...” Jungah explained.
Kris racked through his brain for his weekend schedule. *This Saturday. I have a meeting with three districts, and I have to make an outline for Liang by the next morning.*
Jungah mistook his silence as a ‘no’. She stepped back, “Forget it. I was just asking. You’re not obligated. I thought it would be nice if you came and made more Korean friends besides myself but never mind.” Jungah turned around with a red face and walked away with a shake of her head in dejection. *What was I thinking asking him to come?! Of course he’s busy, you idiot! Just because he has no apparent friends on campus doesn’t mean he doesn’t have better people to spend time with than you!* She was whipped out of her thoughts by a large hand grabbing her left wrist and spinning her around.
Taken aback, she blinked at Kris in front of her.
“I’ll come.” He said. Her eys widened, “You’ll what…?”
“I’ll come.” Kris squeezed her wrist as he gazed deeply into her eyes with promise, “I’ll be there on Saturday to celebrate your birthday.” *Even if it means postponing the biggest meeting. I might lose this deal, but that’s not what matters right now. What is important is the birthday of the girl I love. It’s even more amazing that she thought to invite me. I’ll just have to make something up to Liang later.*
“Are you sure?” Jungah questioned. Kris smiled and nodded, “Positive.”
Her heart engorged with joy. “Okay then. See you on Saturday.”
She had a feeling that her 19th birthday would be the best birthday ever.