Chapter Twelve

In Another Life (Descendants Of The Sun)
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Chapter 12


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Daesagan: Chief Censor, who works and leads the Office of Censors. They remonstrate with the king if there was wrong or improper action or policy. He also impeaches corrupt officials and spoke opinions about general state of affairs. Its function as organ of speech often overlapped with the Inspector General (Daesaheon) and they sometimes submitted joint petition to the king.

 

Jurchen: (also called Manchu) are those group who invaded the Joseon Dynasty. (Actually, there is a huge similarity with what took place during the invasions but tbh the first Manchu invasion happened during King Injo’s time and not during Sejong’s but meeeeh this is fiction. This is in no way related chronologically with what really happened in history, okay? J this is only to help you guys picture out the events. Sorryyyy)

 




 





Last night, I found myself in the middle of nowhere—a beautiful nowhere.



I was in the middle of an unknown place.



But the flowers that bloomed, the bright moon that gleamed in the dark sky, and the man who captivated my eyes and kissed me that night somehow made me feel that in the middle of this unknown place... I found myself.



I found my place, and it was in Yoo Si Jin's side. In Yoo Si Jin's heart.



The night was too beatific to end for both of them, but they had to leave the palace before a eunuch or a palace guard could catch them making a scene in the middle of the late Princess' garden. She could only recall walking in a much more peaceful atmosphere with him, with their clasped hands sharing the small warmth it made it between their palms.



The walk was slow, as if they just wanted to enjoy every second of it and that they didn't want it to end so soon. Mo Yeon would occasionally turn her head and glance towards Si Jin's direction, who was more focused on walking.

 

 

"Did I surprise you tonight?" She asked him.



"You absolutely did with that kiss,"



Her face blushed pink as her other hand gripped tightly on the fabrics of her chima, "I'm sorry,"



"Why are you apologizing?" He asked as he gently pulled her hand, causing her to lean on his side as they walked down the alley. His hand then let go of its grasp on hers and slowly found its place on her shoulder. "You don't have to take anything back. You can't take that back. My lips have been sealed by you,"




Her sudden maneuver to lunge forward and plant a kiss on his lips played in her mind all over again, and the more that she felt embarrassed of doing it.




But somehow, she felt as if she had placed a few pieces of herself together in a puzzle she had long wanted to finish; she loved being with him, for he was building her back up after being broken, and she hoped Si Jin felt the same thing.



But for the man, he felt both: being built up and torn apart. Behind Si Jin's calm face was a troubled heart.



He promised himself from the moment he met this woman that he wouldn't get too attached, and that his feelings would be nothing but temporary and fleeting, but through the course of time, things did not go as planned and in some way, she has found her way into his life.



Si Jin loved her, but he certainly did not want commitments. He did not want to make promises, especially at this point in his life—when his days are finally numbered. But there he was that night, pouring out all the thoughts he had kept in his mind.



And he can't take those back either.



"Gwenchanha?" Mo Yeon asked when she noticed him stiffen his clasp on her hand.




"Yeah, I'm okay—omo," He paused when he felt something cold drop on his free hand. He looked up and saw tiny, white particles slowly falling down from the sky.



It's the beginning of winter, he lifted his hand to catch a small, white, featherlike flake of snow and watch it land on his palm. He never thought a single drop of snow could make him feel that cold, but gladly he had his other hand holding onto Mo Yeon's soft, warm one.



"Do you find winter beautiful?" Mo Yeon asked him, and Si Jin reluctantly shook his head.



Winter was supposed to be a beautiful season, but circumstances had made it an awful one. The cold weather only made it difficult for his health. Furthermore, he had lost people special to him during this season: the princess, then his mother.


 


With those events that had taken place, winter only became colder each year.




"I don't like it when it snows too, for some reason," Mo Yeon shrugged, whisking the snowflake off his hand—a sudden gesture that made Si Jin laugh.




"You're starting to become comfortable with me,"



"Wouldn't that be advantageous on your part?" She told him, as if it were an obvious fact, "I'll be giving you every bit of information I know. Being comfortable would only signify that I would not be hiding anything from you,"



"Anything?"




"Anything." She said firmly as they continued walking, "If there is one thing I could never do, that is to tell a lie,"



He smirked, "Then you have my trust,"




"When do we begin?"




"Would it be fine if we begin tomorrow? In that way, I could give you enough time to recall."




Actually, he was the one who needed some time on his own.




That night, after saying goodnight to Kang Mo Yeon and watch her enter inside her quarters, Yoo Si Jin walked to his office, which was, thankfully, far away from where she slept. Sitting on his working area, he opened one of the drawers of his table and took out his journal. He quickly flipped it to the first clean, unwritten page and started writing on it.



He was so confused, he needed to write his thoughts down to one person he knew would understand.



Eomeoni,



I told myself I would only pass by, that I would only be a mere moment in someone's life. I told myself I would not make my existence be remembered, in that way I don't get to hurt the people I hold dearly.



All the while, I wished to leave soon. To be with you. Up there. But that was until I met her.



He paused, dipped his brush on the dark pigment and started writing again.



I lived my life training myself to never invest on things that I want. I swore to the heavens I would never hold onto something when I knew I don't have that much time...but I love her, and so I...told her how I felt.



What have I done?

 

I don't want her to suffer. I don't want her to watch me slip away eventually. I don't want to see her cry. I can't be with her. I can't be with anyone.



I don't want her to—




Si Jin stopped writing, hesitant to even scribble the last of his thoughts down, but after a few moments, he heaved a sigh and started writing again.



—end up like Abeoji.



Shortly, there came three knocks from his door. "Come in," Si Jin said as he immediately kept his journal back inside the drawer and waited for the door to open.



"Byeongjo," Seo Dae Young walked in and bowed to his master before standing back up again.




"It is unusual for you to visit me this late," Si Jin spoke, "Is there something I should know?"




"Just a few reports from the barracks located near the northern boundaries. They asked me to send this to you," Dae Young placed a neatly-folded paper on Si Jin's desk before explaining further, "There was a situation in the boundary earlier this morning. An escapee from the Jurchen army has been captured by our Northern Regiment, just as soon as they headed out of the barracks."



"Escapee? So have you confirmed his intent to escape?"



"At least, that's what he claims himself to be. Gladly, he did not have weapons along with him, but the general assigned in our Northern Regiment asks for your decision, along with the King's,"



Si Jin crossed his arms. A weaponless enemy soldier... "Have they asked him any more questions?"



Dae Young eagerly shook his head, "I'm afraid not. He wishes to speak with you,"



Seconds passed before the puzzled Si Jin spoke. "Why would he want to speak with me?" He asked with his brows knitted together.



"No idea," The soldier replied with the same expression as Si Jin's. "Should we tell them to bring the escapee to the royal prison, or should we hold him at the northern regiment's barracks?"



"Let him stay there. He could be some decoy to a plan, hence it would be dangerous if we bring him closer to the King," He spoke after moments of deliberating, "I shall visit him,"



"You? Jinja?" He asked in his disbelief, "But I thought the weather does not favor your condition,"



"Seo Dae Young, I managed to walk myself ho

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