After the walk in the woods, Kris and Jungah headed back to town. He parked by Myungdong. “Let’s look around.”
She checked the time. It was nearly 3 p.m. “Okay, but I can’t stay long. I have dinner with Zico. I need to be at his place no later than 6.”
As much as Kris didn’t want to send her away to be with her first love, he didn’t want to confine her. “I have to be somewhere by then, too.” He stepped out of the car.
Once they stood by each other, he took her hand, and she held onto it tightly. It felt natural to hold hands now. They walked through the crowded streets of the popular Myungdong. There were so many things to see, eat, and buy. Jungah felt her hand slipping from his grip. She thought they would break away and become lost, but Kris fixed his grasp on her and kept her securely by his side.
They looked at the interesting shops and tables full of intriguing and pretty objects.
Jungah tried a bracelet on but put it back since it didn’t match her. She grasped another bracelet and slipped it on. She tilted her head and slowly bobbed her head in approval. *This one looks better.* Jungah looked up to ask Kris’s opinion. *Where did he go?* She found him a table away.
He held up gold-colored artifacts and examined them in interest.
Jungah couldn’t help but stare at his handsome side profile. She noticed a few girls snapping pictures of him from afar.
“Is he a celebrity?”
“Maybe he’s a model!”
*He is, huh?* Jungah’s eyes softened.
Kris stopped tinkering with the object and turned towards her. She looked away but wasn’t fast enough. Kris placed the object down and walked over. He tilted his head and studied her face, “Why were you staring at me?”
“D-don’t be stupid. Who was staring?” She mumbled.
Jungah placed the bracelet back on the table and walked away.
Kris followed her, “You were staring at me with these glossy eyes that were spilling hearts. So why were you staring? Huh?”
Annoyed, Jungah spun around. “Is it a sin to check out my own boyfriend?!” She snarled.
Kris stared at her. * !* Jungah whirled back around and clasped her hands over in shame. *I can’t believe I just blurted that outloud. I’m losing my sanity. Oh God.* She pressed her palm to her forehead and shook her head with her eyes closed.
“You were checking me out?” Jungah could hear the victorious smirk from his voice. “Shut up.” She grumbled and walked away.
Kris went to catch up with her. He slipped his arms around her waist from behind. “Don’t be shy.” Kris murmured and kissed her neck. Heat flashed up her neck and spread across her cheeks. She gave him a look that she hoped was stern. But she failed and ended up giving him an adorably miserable look.
Kris chuckled and kissed her temple.
“He has a girlfriend?!” The girls squealed, crestfallen.
Jungah couldn’t help but smirk proudly. *Yeah, es, he’s mine, so no more pictures of him without my permission.*
“I think it’s Jungah!” B-Bomb called. “I’ll get it!” U-Kwon jogged to the door. He opened it up, “Took you long enough-“
U-Kwon froze when he saw Kris behind Jungah. He didn’t bother to hide his disappointment and groaned right away. “Why are you here again?!” U-Kwon grieved.
“U-Kwon.” Jungah gave him a look.
“Lucky for you, I’m only dropping her off.” Kris held out the bags of two blouses, pair of high heels, and three necklaces he had bought her. No matter how much she had tried to run away and fiercely scream at him, he ended up buying the lovely fashion pieces for her.
“You were spending the day with him again?” U-Kwon narrowed his eyes in accusation.
Jungah shrugged, and Kris rolled his eyes. “Come here, babe.” He motioned with his two fingers.
“Babe?!” U-Kwon gawked. He tried to clean his ears, “I heard something wrong, right?”
Jungah turned to face Kris, “Go. You have somewhere to be, don’t you?”
“Yeah, I do.” *Damn it. I don’t want to leave her with Zico. But at least it’s not just him. The others are here with her.* Kris’s gaze flickered back to her. His expression softened, and he squeezed her hand, “I’ll come pick you up. Call me when you’re ready to go home.”
“Okay.” Jungah promised. U-Kwon was still staring at the scenery in front of him with disbelieving eyes.
“Call me.” Kris whispered. Then he gave her a sweet kiss that lasted more than a couple seconds. He pulled back, gave her a meaningful look, and left.
Jungah turned around and abruptly halted. U-Kwon was gaping at her as if she had seven heads. “What?” She asked defensively. With a clear of , she darted inside. “I’m here!” Jungah called. She placed her bag and fashion accessories on the couch.
“Welcome!” P.O. called. Zico grinned, “You came?” He looked her up and down and pointed with a knowing look, “Look at you! You look like a girl!”
Jungah rolled her eyes as she followed him back into the kitchen, “Thanks for that heartfelt compliment.”
Zico chuckled, “I’m joking. You look beautiful.”
“NO SHE DOES NOT!” U-Kwon stormed into the kitchen. “Geez, man. Let her down easy.” Kyung chuckled.
“She does not look beautiful because she wore this for her new Chinese boyfriend!”
“Chinese boyfriend?” Taeil raised an eyebrow. Then his eyes rounded, “Wu Fan?!”
“Boyfriend? Yeah, right.” B-Bomb chortled.
“I’m serious! I saw them lip-locking in front of my very own eyes!” U-Kwon stated.
The entire room fell silent. All eyes were on Jungah. She eyed U-Kwon. *I was going to break the news myself, but thanks, .*
“Is that true? Are you dating Wu Fan?” Kyung uneasily asked.
Jungah sighed. With a deep breath, she truthfully answered, “Yes…I am.”
Jaws dropped onto the floor. *.* Kyung glanced at Zico for his reaction. Jaehyo pinched his eyebrows together and also looked at Zico in worry.
Zico just stood still.
He didn’t laugh.
He didn’t cry.
He didn’t yell.
He didn’t run away.
Jungah held her breath. She suddenly felt really uneasy. *What if Zico disapproves?* No one else’s reaction mattered to her besides Zico. If he told her to stop meeting Kris, she would try to persuade him. And if after that, he still didn’t like her with Kris, she would stop meeting him. That’s how much Zico’s opinion counted to her.
Finally, Zico looked up. He gazed into her eyes for several seconds then broke out into a warm, friendly smile, “That’s great, Jungah. I’m happy for you.”
“What?!” U-Kwon balked. Kyung stared at Zico in skepticism. *Lie. He’s lying.*
“You…are? You’re okay…with this? With me being with…another guy? With Kris?” Jungah whispered in awe.
Zico nodded, “Of course. What’s not to like? I saw how he treated you at your birthday party. I approve. You have my blessing.” He lightly placed his hand over her head, gave her a tender smile, and walked out of the kitchen.
Kyung glanced at Jungah then went after him.
Jungah stood there, stunned. *It feels strange having my first love being happy over my boyfriend. Huh, so I guess Zico really doesn’t see me as a girl. There was never a possibility of us from the start. I’m glad I accepted Kris…* Yet, she couldn’t help but feel an emptiness in a part of her heart.
“Zico.” Kyung caught up with him. He stopped and turned around.
“You’re not okay, are you?” Kyung searched his expressionless face. Sometimes, Zico was as hard to read as Jungah. “Why would I not be?” He blinked.
“Don’t give me such bull.” Kyung snapped in frustration. “The girl you love is going out with another man. Someone that isn’t you. Someone that stole your place. Aren’t you sad? Don’t you regret it?”
Zico paused then softly spoke, “It was inevitable for her to fall for him.”
“Muh?” Kyung asked in confusion.
“I saw the look in her eyes. I saw the way she looked at him.” Zico said with a faraway look in his eyes. “The Jungah I know doesn’t care about anyone. Yet, she was always taking care of him. She even broke her arm to protect him. I could tell…that she was slowly starting to fall for him.”
“Woo Jiho.” Kyung felt heartbroken for his best friend.
Zico squeezed his shoulder, “I’m okay. We weren’t meant to be together anyways. I’m just happy to be by her side.”
“Zico!” Jungah called. “Coming!” He called back.
Zico gave Kyung a look to keep this conversation to himself, patted his best friend’s shoulder, and walked away.
Kyung shook his head in sadness. *Woo Jiho, you poor bastard. When will you become truly happy?* For once, he was resentful towards Jungah, although it wasn’t fair since she didn’t know Zico had been in love with her from the beginning.
Later that night after Kris concluded his meeting and Jungah spended much time with Block B, he picked her up from Zico’s apartment. Kris drove Jungah home, and they went into her apartment together. She was glad she had cleaned it up that morning. She had had a feeling that he would stop by her place that night.
“What did you do with your friends?” Kris asked.
Jungah poured juice into two glasses. “The usual. Dinner, TV, talk.”
“Do you always have dinner every Saturday with them?” Kris asked curiously.
Jungah nodded as she placed the juice back in the refrigerator.
“Look what I got.” Kris announced.
Jungah shut the refrigerator and spun around. Her eyes rounded, “Yah.” He was holding up the hard copy prints of the pictures they had taken that afternoon. “Those were supposed to stay in your phone, dammit!” She hissed.
Kris shrugged, “Now they’ll stay on our fridges.” He reached out and took the extra magnets. Kris stuck the photos on either side of the picture of Jungah and Zico. He stepped back and admired it. *Now my picture is up on her fridge, too.* She saw the picture of them kissing and turned red-faced. *I hate that picture. I’ll burn it one day.*
“Here.” Jungah handed him a glass of juice.
Kris took a sip and leaned against the table.
Jungah drank her juice.
At that moment, Kris spoke, “Should I spend the night with you?”
“PFFT!” Jungah spat her orange juice out and liquid spewed out onto the floor. She choked and gagged on her drink. *Did he just ask if he can sleep with me?!*
Kris raised an eyebrow, “What’s up with you?” He saw her expression and smirked, “Oh. So that’s what you were thinking of. You’re dirty. I was just asking if I can sleep here. You know. Snoring, dreaming, that kind of thing. I wasn’t even asking if I can sleep in the same bed with you. And you thought I was asking about that. You take things to the extreme, don’t you, Han Jungah?”
Jungah could see that he relished teasing her. Her expression flattend, and she pointed to the door, “Get out. Now.”
“I’ll take that as a no.” Kris smirked even wider.
Jungah snatched the glass away from him, slammed it on the table, and pushed him towards the door. She gave him a little shove out the door and glowered at him. “I don’t need you and your bull. Go home and sleep in your own damn house. Jerk.” Jungah went back inside and locked the door shut behind her.
Kris chuckled and shook his amazement. *Why do I find it refreshing that she called me a jerk?*