The morning sun seeped in through the glass windows. The curtains slightly parted by the gentle wind.
The breeze ruffled past Jungah and stirred her awake.
Slowly, she began to gain consciousness. Her eyes were still heavy with sleep and exhaustion. Her body felt stiff, sore, painful, and unwieldy. Bit by bit, her eyelids began to open. Her eyes rolled back to the front, and she blinked at her surroundings. *Where the hell am I? This isn’t my room…*
That’s when she noticed the picture frame of her and Kris by the bedside.
Her eyes rounded, and her body stiffened immediately.
Speaking of her body…Jungah glanced down at the black bed sheet wrapped around herself. She swallowed hard. *Oh . . .* Dreadfully, Jungah pulled back the bed sheet. She was greeted by her stark body.
Jungah gasped and quickly covered herself back up. Her knuckles turned pale as she squeezed onto the bed sheet. The events from last night hit her at once. She remembered all too well.
Clothes flying everywhere.
The hot, passionate kisses.
Holding each other tightly until they practically molded into one person.
Her embarrassing pleas for more.
Jungah covered her face with her hand and inwardly groaned. *. I can’t believe it. I lost my ity to him.*
But it wasn’t just any ‘him’. It was the person she loved more than anything in the world…next to Zico.
The thought of him made her stomach clench in shame and guilt.
Slowly, Jungah turned her head and glanced behind her exposed shoulder. Kris was heavily asleep on his side with an idyllic expression on his gorgeous face. One of his arms was lightly resting around her bare waist. Jungah softened. *Of course. He would still look beautiful after last night.* His disheveled hair fell over his eyes, and she had a sudden urge to brush it away.
Jungah clenched her hand into a fist to prevent herself from doing so.
Right now, she had a lot of thinking to do, and another round of whatever had happened last night wouldn’t help her muddled mind.
Carefully, so as not to wake him up, Jungah slipped away from his grasp. She sat up, and the light wind hit her mortifying ness. Her cheeks reddened as she searched for her clothes. Jungah grabbed her shorts and blouse by her side of the bed. Her bra had been thrown farther, and she snatched it off the ground.
*Where the is my underwear? ! There’s no time!*
Finally, she found her plain cotton underwear by the door. Her eyebrows furrowed in annoyance as she yanked it off the floor. Jungah slipped into his bathroom and quickly dressed. She looked in the mirror and pulled back the collar of her blouse. Jungah grimaced when she saw the love marks trailing over her collarbone to her neck. *. This isn’t good.* She quickly covered it up and left the bathroom.
Jungah put her shoes back on and headed to the door. She paused by the bedroom door and glanced back.
Kris was still blissfully asleep. Her expression softened. *What will he feel like if he wakes up, and I’m not there?*
Jungah shook her head to take the consideration away. Right now, she had to get away from him as far as possible.
Jungah left his condo and ran as fast as she could towards her place. However, it was difficult with the throbbing ache between her legs. Jungah winced as she walked up the stairway. *ing elevator. Why does it have to be broken today out of all the other days?* Shaking her head, she limped towards her apartment.
Jungah pulled out her keys to open her door. Much to her surprise, the door was already unlocked. She opened the door and tilted her head in question. *Did I forget to lock the door? Or maybe…a robber?!*
In alarm, Jungah raced into her apartment. Everything was exactly as she had left it, and there was no evidence of a bulgary.
“Where have you been?” A voice asked.
Jungah spun around so fast and a loud gasp escaped . Her heart began thudding inside her ribcage. She couldn’t answer. She just stared at the unexpected visitor in horror.
“Why are you staring at me like that, Jungie Jungie?” Zico tilted his head with a small chuckle. “Look what I brought for you!!” He held up the cup ramens.
Jungah’s eyes dropped to the sacks of groceries by the refrigerator.
“I’m restocking your refrigerator for you.” Zico answered her question.
Slowly, she shifted her gaze back up to him. He clucked his tongue with a shake of the head. “Clumsy Jungah. You will be a terrible housewife. How can you live without much food in the house? It’s not like you store up for the week by eating much at my house on the weekened. Are you on a diet?”
Zico gave her a suspicious look.
Her heart broke at the sight. *Here he is, being considerate and replenishing my empty refrigerator while I go with the man who wants him dead. me. I hate myself.* Tears spilled down her cheeks.
Zico blinked in shock. It had been a while since he had seen Jungah look so grief-stricken.
Zico ran up to her without a second’s hesitance. He grabbed her shoulders and looked into her eyes. “Han Jungah, what's wrong? Why are you crying? Did something happen?”
Jungah avoided his eye contact and shook her head wretchedly. She couldn’t face him right now. *I can’t look into his eyes. I feel like everything will be exposed. Zico will know I’ve been a dirty , and he’ll be disappointed in me. I’ve never felt so vulnerable before. Why did I have to lose it last night and sleep with him?*
Zico searched her face in worry. *Something is wrong, but she won’t tell me. Most likely, she won’t want to discuss it now. I shouldn’t push her, or she’ll have a meltdown.* “I’ll get you something to drink. Wait here.” He headed back into the kitchen and opened the refrigerator.
Jungah looked up and watched his strong, supportive back with sad eyes and depressed shoulders. *I stabbed a knife into that back. That back that has supported me all these years. I can’t believe I would do this to him. I’m such an ungrateful . After all he’s done for me, I’ve paid him back like this. I don’t deserve to be by his side.* Her heart ached in despair.
Zico peered through the fridge. He found a bottle of orange juice and snatched it off the shelf.
Zico straightened up, “I got orange-“
Thin, tough arms wrapped around his waist.
The drink tumbled out of his hand and rolled down the tile floor.
Zico stiffened at the feel of Jungah’s arms tightening around his waist. *What…is…going on….?*
Zico tried to turn around, “Jungah-“
She gripped even tighter onto him, “Don’t turn around. Don’t look at me. Just please. Don’t.” He could hear the lump in . Her face buried into his back, and he could feel the wetness from her tears forming on his shirt.
Zico’s expression softened. He slowly blinked a couple times. His arms fell limply by his sides, and he waited wordlessly. He didn’t know what he was waiting for, but he just waited.
Jungah stifled a sob as she clung onto him. *I knew I would regret. I just didn’t know I would feel this much regret. Seeing Zico just made everything worse. I wish I could turn back time. But even if I did, I would probably do the same thing. I would still make love to Kris. I hate myself for sleeping with him in this situation when Zico’s life is on the line.* She couldn’t believe she had lost her ity to another man when she once had vowed before to save herself for the only one special in her heart: Zico.
Slowly, Zico glanced behind him. In a soft, gentle tone, he whispered, “Jungah…are you all right?”
*No. I’m not. I want to die right now, right here. But then…no one else would be able to protect you.* Without a reply, she closed her eyes and nestled her face into his back. *Don’t worry, Woo Jiho. I’m here. I’ll protect you. I won’t let any harm befall you. I’m in love with Kris now, but I can never forget the impact you had on me. Even if it takes my life, I’ll save you. To me, before all else, you come first. I owe you that much.*