After studying at the school library for hours, you ran to Yummy Dukkbokki House. It was a pretty, small eatery that was very colorful on the inside. Your mom had had good taste in interior decorating.
Your stepaunt was busy counting money. She slammed the money on the counter, “You finally came! You lazy girl! Where have you been all this time?”
“Sorry, auntie. I was studying-“
“No excuses! Clean everything up and close up at midnight.” Your stepaunt greedily took the profits and left the store.
You sighed and sat on the high stool. There were not many customers that night. You opened your book and continued to study. The tinkling of the bell signaled a customer. You quickly pulled the apron on and stood up. “Hello! Welcome to our dukkbokki house!” You bowed.
A tall man with kind, handsome features came over, “Can I have a plate of dukkbokki, please?”
“Of course. Please hold on!” You ran to the kitchen to prepare the food. You came back out with a plate of dukkbokki, “Here you go, sir.” You gave him napkins, chopsticks, and a cup of water.
“Thank you.” The man sipped his water and glanced around, “Are you alone in this restaurant?”
You nodded, “Yes.”
“Where is the adult?” He asked.
“My stepaunt went back home. She watches the store in the daytime and I watch it at night.” You responded.
“Isn’t it hard? You have to cook and clean, right?” He asked.
“It’s okay. I’m used to it now.” You assured.
The man frowned, “Poor thing. Students should be studying, not working. Your stepaunt and stepcousins take advantage of you a lot.” You blinked in surprise *How did he know?!* “Thanks for the food.” He smiled and started to eat.
You bowed and went back to the counter. You were into your studies when you heard the squeaking of a chair. You looked up and the man came towards you. You quickly stood up, “Was everything okay? Do you need more water?”
He smiled and shook his head as he paid, “Everything was fine. Thank you. The dukkbokki was good. Did you make it yourself?”
You smiled and nodded.
“It’s the best I’ve ever eaten.” The man said.
“My mom makes it better.” You beamed.
“Where is she?” He asked.
Your smile faded, “She’s…in heaven. With my dad.” You gave him a small smile.
“I’m sorry. Life must have been difficult for you.” The man gently said.
“It’s okay. There’s nothing I can do about it.” You said.
“Well, I’ll be coming around a lot. My name is Kwill.” He held his hand out.
You shook his warm hand, “I’m ~~~~.”
Kwill lightly ruffled your head with a kind smile, “Don’t worry, ~~~~~~~~. The light will be coming to save you soon. Your life will change for the better.”
You gave him an inquiring look but somehow, you were comforted by his soothing words. “Thank you, Kwill ahjusshi. Have a good night.” You bowed.
He waved, “Don’t go home too late.”
You smiled *That was a nice man.* No more customers came in so you locked up the shop.
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