Acceptance or Rejection?
Eli, can you meet me at my apartment? I need to tell you something, privately.
I swallowed hard as my thumb hit the send button. I can trust him with my secret, right? And he's not going to hate me for not telling him... right? I paced around in useless circles across my room as I waited for his reply. When it came, I flung myself at my phone and held it in sweaty palms.
You sound serious. Is this about what happened last night? I'll be over soon.
I let out a deep breath and tried to prepare myself for the confrontation. "He won't hate me, he won't hate me, he won't hate me," I repeated to myself under my breath.
When the doorbell rang, I jumped up and froze. I whirled around to face my mirror and made sure that everything about me was presentable. "Okay, this is it, Christina." I took a couple of breathes to calm my racing heart and I advanced toward the door.
"Come in," I told Eli. He was obedient and stepped into the apartment.
After I locked the door and turned around, I faced Eli. My hands were shaking with nervousness and I wanted to back out of what I was about to do. Maybe I can be like, April Fools! Let's go out to eat! But this day will come sooner or later if I was to stay friends with Eli, or perhaps more.
"I uh..." I sucked in my cheeks and bit them. "So. I just needed to tell you something before I responded to your confession."
Eli's face was serious as he watched me fidget with the hem of my shirt.
"There's something about me that you don't know," I said finally. "I'm not just XXSilver's little sister and I'm not just a random girl who managed to snag the leading female role in one of the most popular dramas of the year. I've.. I've actually been in the entertainment industry for a bit before I came here to visit my sister. And I'm, uh... actually kinda famous already... just under a different name.."
"A different name?"
"And even though I'm not supposed to tell anyone, I felt like I've been kinda lying to you all this time. I mean," I rushed on, "the person you've been hanging out with is still me, and it's the real me, but it's just that there's another part of me you haven't seen yet, if that makes any sense. So if I, uh, tell you what my stage name is, will you promise to not tell anyone?"
I held my breath when I saw Eli's unchanging expression.
"Christina. You are still you, no matter who you say you are," he said softly. "I promise to keep your secret."
"Well, then.. come on. Oh! And promise me you won't be mad," I beseeched him with pleading eyes.
"Silly. I won't get mad, I promise."
I led him into my room where I pulled out a box from my closet. After tearing the masking tape off, I opened the flaps and pulled out my CDs.
Eli was puzzled as he watched me plunk CDs onto my bed. "So you're secretly obsessed with Xina? Is that what this is about?"
I shook my head. Was he really this dense?
I waited for him to figure it out. When I finally saw the light flicker in his eyes, I bit my lip.
"You're... You're Xina," he closed his eyes and let out a long breath. "You're Xina."
"Yeah..." I pursed my lips together tightly. "Are you... mad I didn't tell you earlier?"
"Mad? No," he smiled slightly. I exhaled in relief. "I'm more... shocked than anything else."
"So you're not going to hate me," I said carefully.
"What? Of course not. Goodness, Christina. I just confessed my love for you yesterday." He raised an eyebrow at me. "I mean, you've gained a lot of popularity in Korean now with your lovable personality. I guess you being famous in America and across the globe isn't too surprising, now that I can think logiclaly again."
He didn't hate me. He wasn't going to hate me. He was going to keep my secret. I blinked.
I had totally expected him to blow up in my face, screaming about how I didn't trust him enough to tell him earlier or something. I guess I've been watching too many dramas lately...
"So we're good," I let the half-statement, half-question float in the air.
"No, we're not."
My heart sank. He did hate me!
He stepped closer toward me. "We're not good because you haven't responded to my confession."
I looked up at him.
"Christina, you're still that dork I met on the plane, no matter how famous you are or will become," he said in a gentle voice. "Please, be mine."
Now that everything was out in the air, I didn't know how to respond. I care about Eli a lot. I really do. Do I love him? I'm not sure. But I definitely like him more than just a friend.
I stared into his honest eyes for a moment, searching for something I didn't know. "Eli..." I bit my lip for the tenth time and directed my gaze toward the floor. "I..." When I looked up into his hesitating, kind, adorable face again, I knew my choice. "Yes."
"What?" He blinked.
"Yes. Don't make me say it again," I warned.
"You'll be my girlfriend?" He asked again as if he couldn't believe what he was hearing. ]
"That's what I said, right?" I groaned and covered my eyes. I felt his arms wrap around me and I let him draw me into a tight embrace.
"Hey, girlfriend," he grinned.
"Hey, boyfriend," I rolled my eyes. I couldn't hide my smile, though.
Samantha and Kiwkang came barreling through the door and they both froze when they caught sight of us hugging. "What...?"
I broke away from Eli, shy. "We're, uh, going out." I was kind of expecting her to go "super protective older sibling mode" on Eli, but instead...
They blinked. Samantha poked her boyfriend and smirked, "Give me my ten dollars. I totally won that bet."
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