"If you're seeing this I'm really sorry." Minhyun could see the slight swell in her eyes as if she retook the video many times due to crying.
"You must've also met Jinki! He was adamant on telling you everything himself but I wanted to make this video. I just thought it would be nicer for you to see me. one last time." Jessica drew out the same manila folder from her side, Minhyun felt obliged to do the same.
"If you pull out the first page from the stack of papers in this folder, you'll see I've left a will for you." Minhyun glanced at the long page of writing.
"And also you'll see many documents supporting my claims under that. Now we'll move on to the first part Minhyun." Jessica removed a page from the stack.
"Honestly it was very difficult to make this work, due to the fact that you're only 13, but you have no other relatives and I didn't want you guys to become separated." Minhyun held his breath, he didn't want to lose his brothers.
"It was even difficult for Jinki, but someone reached out. And I was able to have a judge in court rule that you are not required to be under a guardian and I was able to keep all of your brothers' under your name. So you are legally your brothers' guardian now but 2 things are still required. Here." Jessica showed a paper to the screen.
"Someone 18 or over still has to check in with you every day, and you must also fill in a monthly form so that the government can keep track of you. I have someone set up to check in on you. He's one of my friend's sons' and I see him as my own child personally. He just turned 18 a couple of months back so he'll be checking in on you. And Jinki will be able to help you fill in the forms." Minhyun smiled at least they'll be able to stay together.
"You may not know but your parent's money was automatically transferred to me, and I am now transferring it over to you along with my own property. But it's been set up so that it's protected fully by the government and bank, you'll be getting a very small portion of it just to get by every month. The total amount is listed there." Minhyun curiously flipped through the papers until he found what was mentioned.
12 BILLION WON!?!?!
"Yes I know it's a surprising amount, but I guess your parents handled their money very well." Minhyun placed a hand over his heart, he was overwhelmed by the amount of money he was being left with.
"I also know your brothers' miss the cafe, and you may be hoping to open one again." Minhyun thought back to the good times years ago, their parent's cafe will always be kept in a special place in their hearts. "I do wish that you'll finish high school at least Minhyun before you open one though, and you'll be an adult by then, if Jinki is still around by then he promised he'll help you with finding a place and obtaining a business license." Jessica's eyes were flickering around the room, it seemed like she was running out of things to say.
"One more thing...... and I'll leave that as a surprise Minhyun." Jessica smiled softly through the screen.
"I know you'll do a great job with your brothers, you'll do just fine. My place is yours unless you decide you want to move somewhere else. If your brothers do wind up sad one day remembering me or your parents, help them see the brighter light of day. I would be crushed to know that they're unhappy. Minhyun."
"Goodbye Minhyun, I love you and I promise I'll be watching over you." The video flickered off, leaving Minhyun to bask in everything.
He gets to stay with his brothers, left with a money amount that people can only dream of, and a surprise? He doesn't know if the world is taunting him for all of his misfortunes or rewarding him for enduring through it all.
"I see you've finished the video." Jinki appeared at the doorway again. "Don't worry I'll be handling most of it. Why don't you head back to your brothers now?" Jinki led Minhyun to the same room again. " And I'll be back at your place tonight to go over some final things." Jinki disappeared without a farewell. Leaving Minhyun with his brothers. The wails and sobs were mostly dissipated. The younger ones had reduced to hushed whimpers. A police officer was also standing in the room noting something down.
"You're finished with that lawyer?" Minhyun nodded. "I think it's time for you guys to head back to your place then."
"But." Minhyun glanced back towards Jessica's body, only then noticing that there were other people in the room preparing to move it. "I guess it's time to move on."
"Hyung we don't want to go yet." He ignored their protests, he had to be strong for them. "We have to go now guys, say your last g-goodbye." He bit down on the last word to prevent himself from crying again. He stepped out of the room to let his brothers' have a final farewell.
"Thanks for everything." He didn't look back.
Dinner was quiet that evening. Minhyun had attempted his aunt's kimchi stew in order to lift their spirits, but even he winced when he took his first sip when they were eating. It was good... but it was just missing something. The silence ensued, only the sound of chewing and slurping resonated until a knock on the door pierced their silence. Minhyun had opened it expecting Jinki, not another stranger.
"Hello, you must be Minhyun." The man was smiling warmly at Minhyun, only a warmth that could rival Jessica's smile. "I'm sure you've heard about me."
"Are you the person that Auntie Sica mentioned?" He thought back to the video where she mentioned that someone around 18 would be checking in with them.
"Yes, I am. My name is Jisung." The man's hand unconsciously moved forward to pet Minhyun's hair but retracted backward in fear of gaining disapproval from the smaller. "Are you hungry Jisung-nim?"
"Haha don't call me that, you'll make me feel old. How about hyung?"
"Uh okay hyung, are you hungry?" Jisung smiled in satisfaction.
"No, but can I meet your brothers?"
"Oh sure." Minhyun led him to the kitchen. "Guys this is Jisung hyung."
"Yes, he'll be watching over us, but he won't be living with us?"
"No I won't, I already have two new handfuls to watch over."
"Anyways this is Seongwoo, Jaehwan, Hyunbin, Daehwi, and Seonho." He pointed at each of them.
"Nice to meet you guys I hope that- Oh! I forgot. I have one more thing for you Minhyun."
"Oh, so you don't know? Perfect! Here come with me to the door." They walked back, this time all of his brothers were following curiously. Jisung poked his head out of the door and made a couple of arm signals. Closing it again and turning back to Minhyun. "Your aunt had wanted me to take care of two more people." Jisung swung the door open behind him. Minhyun couldn't believe his eyes. The duo was smiling at him happily, one had become more muscular while the other was taller and lean.
"Minhyunnie!" Dongho and Minki were standing right there, all flesh and blood. "We missed you!" They pulled Minhyun in for a hug."
"But how?" Minhyun was flabbergasted.
"Jisung hyung adopted us!' Minki chirped happily.
"I prefer you'd say that I became your legal guardian instead. Adoption makes me feel like I'm 20 years older." A small laugh escaped Jisung's lips. "But I do miss having a little brother." He ruffled their hair.
"Isn't it great Minhyun? I missed you.." Dongho pulled Minhyun closer to his chest.
"Yes, but you're *cough* suffocating me." The words vibrated against Dongho's chest.
"Sorry, Minhyun." He let him go hesitantly.
"Didn't you miss us hyung?" Minki questioned happily.
"Of course I did Minki, what happened to the phone calls?"
"Yoona noona had to change her phone and she lost your number." Dongho frowned at the past of being unable to hear Minhyun's voice.
"No Jonghyun?" Minhyun frowned.
"He didn't live in the orphanage."
"He didn't!?!?" Minhyun took a step back in shock.
"Oh you didn't know, he just comes to play with us. He has his own family but he moved to Seoul a few months ago.."
"Really!" Minhyun grinned excitingly.
"Yeah, maybe we'll get to see him!"
"I hope." Minhyun rubbed at the handkerchief in his back pocket, after Jonghyun offered it to him that day, he'd never took it back and held on to it ever since.
"Well we have to stay here a little bit, Jinki told me to wait until he got here to help Minhyun." Jisung notified them.
"Let's play Minhyun!"
"Maybe in a bit Minki, we're still eating.." Minhyun trailed off and turned back towards his brothers' standing at the back. "Don't you remember these two?"
"Well, I know I can't forget them." Seongwoo greeted them shyly. "They helped you before."
"Who are they hyung?" Being younger, Daehwi, Hyunbin, and Seonho had no idea who they were.
"They're your hyungs' best friends." Dongho tried picking Daehwi up but he ran in between Minhyun's legs. Hyunbin followed him.
"Don't be shy guys."
"B-but he looks s-scary." Minhyun could feel him quivering against his leg.
"I don't bite." Dongho knelt down but kept a reasonable distance, offering a warm smile to diminish their fearful thoughts. Seonho ran from his spot and went up to Dongho, holding his arms up to be raised. Seonho looked content being held by Dongho, giggling when Dongho gave his cheek a small peck. But Daehwi and Hyunbin were still a little cautious, favoring to stay closer to Minki when they went back to eat, Minhyun heating up some bread for them.
It took a little while, but after Jinki had visited and left within the span of 2 hours, Daehwi and Hyunbin were enjoying Dongho's presence more.
"We're going to go home guys." Jisung stood up from the chair he was seated on for the last 2 hours working with Minhyun and Jinki.
"But do we have to leave," Minki whined.
"Yes, it's late and we don't even have your rooms' set up! We can visit them tomorrow again."
"Aww okay." They reluctantly walked to the door.
"Bye Minhyun!" Dongho called out as they walked out. "And bye little ones!" He gave Minhyuns' younger brothers a wave. And with that, the door slam shut. Minhyun locked the door and turned to his brothers' with a tired grin.
"It's time for bed guys." He ignored their protests and picked up Seonho first, who was in the phase of enjoying bedtime. "Then I'll get Seonho ready for bed, and you should all have brushed your teeth after that." And thankfully when Minhyun came back out, they all did.
He tucked the younger ones in with a kiss and climbed into his bed adjacent to Seongwoo's. Falling asleep somewhere in their random chatter.
When he woke up in the middle of the night to the sounds of muffled sobs, a little piece of his heart broke.
It will be hard but he'll help his brothers' get over another of the unfortunate events that have plagued their innocent hearts...........
~~~~~An unknown location in Seoul~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Please, I need the money...."
"Do you really want to do this?" The person gave out a small nod.
"Very well then, you may start tomorrow."
"Thank you so much for getting rid of them, they were threatening my political career." Jonghyun flinched upon hearing the voice, there was no way his mother would do what he was thinking.
"Yes, a good shot through the brain will kill them, why? concerned about something." His mothers' evil laugh echoed down the quiet hallway. "Don't tell me you didn't actually kill one of my past requests?..... Good, because then I'd hate to see your own head rolling on the floor...mmhmm....... You'll get the deposit soon........ yes after you kill them tomorrow, thank you." Jonghyun heard his mother shut off the phone, followed by footsteps coming down the hall. Jonghyun's eyes widened, he couldn't let her see him. He ducked behind a large house plant.
"Hmmm......" Taeyeon's feet stopped right behind Jonghyun's hiding spot. "What shall I do today?" She pondered to herself.
"Oh! I'll take Joonmyeon on a day trip to Jeju Island! Mmmm and what should I do to that runt?" She took a few paces forward.
"I'll just make him deal with all the cafe deliveries. KIM JONGHYUN!" Jonghyun gulped watching her leave the hallway. He'll just have to wait 5 more minutes to avoid suspicion.
It doesn't matter that she'll probably yell at him some more, the new knowledge of her dirty work was more important.
~~~~6 YEARS LATER~~~~
"UMMA! APPA!" Minhyun lay helplessly on the ground as his arm desperately reached out for his parents as if he would be able to pull them back to him.
"MINHYUN! IT'S OKAY!"
Minhyun was finally able to get off the ground and ran to his father. Tears rolling down his face as he tried to shake him back to life. "You won't get away with this!" He ran to the group of men who were now trying to shove his mother into the van.
"Let her go!" The men laughed watching the child's attempts by tugging on his mother's leg and kicking at their's.
"Foolish kid, this should take care of you." The blunt side of a gun was smashed against the corner of Minhyun's head, sending him sprawling across the ground. One of them kicked the side of Minhyun's limp body for good measure before they got the mother into the car and drove away.
"Umma......" Minhyun reached out to the car racing away with his arm but he felt his mind going numb. The last thing he saw was his younger brothers still scared and huddled in the doorway before he out.......................
Minhyun shot out of bed with tears running down his face, he squinted at his clock
MInhyun rubbed his eyes as he walked to the bathroom.
Just another bad dream he thought to himself.
He washed his eyes for a good minute until he felt another presence in the bathroom, he turned his head to see his youngest brother standing in the doorway, clutching his blanket.
"Is Hyung okay?" Seonho ditched his blanket and ran up to Minhyun, wrapping his arms around Minhyun's leg in an attempt to comfort him. Minhyun laughed lightly and held him up.
"Seonho what did I say about getting up?" Seonho frowned.
"You said no waking up early but I can't help it." Seonho raised his arms in exasperation, Minhyun cringed slightly, he was gaining influence from Daehwi.
"It's okay, here, you can sleep with me." Minhyun walked back to bed with Seonho in his arms. Smiling as Seonho snuggled into his chest when he laid down.
"I'll scare your bad dreams away hyung," Seonho mumbled as he eventually dozed off. Minhyun's eyes eventually started to lid as well, he had to open up the cafe in a few hours so he needed every minute of rest he could get...........................
A noisy alarm clock is quickly off the table before it can annoy the listener any further. Minhyun winces as he hears a crack, shooting out of bed to see a nail roll across the floor. He lets out a huff in relief, he can't afford another alarm clock so maybe he'll get Seongwoo to fix it later.......
He carefully laid Seonho to the side and dragged himself into the kitchen to make breakfast. Finishing up the pancakes when he felt a tug at his leg. He frowned when he saw Seonho looking up at him with big doe eyes.
"You should be sleeping Seonho...." Minhyun sat down and rested Seonho in his lap, his favorite position. "But hyung is always is always working hard so Seonho wants to help" His youngest brother pouted.
"You can help hyung open the store after he makes breakfast." Minhyun finished up breakfast while Seonho coiled himself around his leg the entire time. Minhyun laughed to himself. He wonders if Seonho will stay this clingy when he finally hits puberty.
He watched Seonho eat his cereal as he ate a couple of pancakes, he always enjoyed their peaceful 6 am rituals. But he may have to lecture Seonho about waking up too early.
He entered all of his brother's rooms to make sure their alarms were set for at least 7 am, and walked into the building adjacent where the cafe was. Falling for his aegyo, Minhyun let Seonho come with him to the cafe at such an early time.
"Good morning Jisung hyung?" Minhyun was confused upon not seeing Jisung usually setting up the cafe at this time in the morning.
"No hyung?" Even Seonho was confused upon not seeing one of his favorite hyungs.
"Maybe he just slept in, how about you help me set up before I open the cafe?" Minhyun took out a rack of plates that were to be arranged in the display case.
"Yes!" Seonho happily took the box to the display case and started arranging the plates by memory, where the baked goods would be placed later.
"Hmmm, they both can't be sleeping in..." Minhyun poked his head into the kitchen and broke into a wide grin.
"Minki!" He hugged the younger as the daily routine.
"Watch it you're going to ruin the cake." Minhyun laughed off his comment, he was always a little cranky in the morning, but it was his fault for volunteering to come to the cafe at 5 am just to bake the food.
"Where's Jisung hyung?" Minhyun sneakily poked a finger out at the icing on one of the cakes, Minki rolled his eyes and pretended not to notice.
"He didn't call you? He's sick." Minhyun looked back at him shocked.
"Really? He never gets sick."
"Eh well, he's not invincible. Maybe just a common cold."
"If you say so, what are you holding there?" Minhyun noted the envelope in Minki's hands.
"It's another letter from Dongho for you." Dongho had left to study abroad a year ago and continuously sent letters for Minhyun while he was away.
"Oh, thanks." Minhyun took the letter and opened it with a smile. He let out a light laugh reading the contents, Dongho wrote about another story of the weird things Americans do.
"Hyung I'm done!" Seonho's voice came from the front, Minhyun excused himself after promising to make Minki a latte and went to Seonho.
"Wow! Perfect as always!" Minhyun placed a kiss on Seonho's head. He smiled watching Seonho take the chocolate off of his head graciously. "Eat that later Seonho."
"I will hyung, can I watch TV?" The TV in the cafe only served for entertainment purposes when Jaehwan or any other performer couldn't perform.
"Sure Seonho, but make sure you flip to channel 78 when I open the cafe so that the customers can watch that new drama."
'Okay hyung!" Seonho the TV, allowing Minhyun to turn back the counter to start prepping ingredients in case it was another busy day at the cafe. While he prepared Minki's latte a particular interview caught his attention. Seonho who was flipping through the channels must've gotten intrigued by it and stopped on it.
"Mrs. Kim! The mayoral election is coming up in a few months, how does it feel to be selected as one of the rare female candidates?" The said person turned around to the camera, causing Minhyun to almost drop the latte.
There, shining in all her evil glory, was Kim Taeyeon.
"It feels great Gunhee! I have never felt so honored before!" A proud smile was displayed on the screen, but Minhyun could only imagine all the things she did to get there.
"You are the only candidate to be revealed to the public so far, do you have any info on the other contenders to tell?"
"I wish I did, they're as hidden to me as the public.'
'Awww that's no fun." Gunhee frowned at the idea of not knowing the potentially juicy gossip.
"But I can assure you Gunhee, that I'll make history as the first female mayor of Seoul!"
"Wow, confidence! A great quality for a leader in our country. Don't you think so Hwanwoong?" The screen shook for a second, most likely the cameraman.
"I'm sorry Gunhee that's all the time I have." The reporter threw his hands up dramatically.
"Already? Darn, I was enjoying this, thank you Mrs.Kim." He gave her a friendly wave as she disappeared off the camera.
"Don't forget to check out one of Kim Taeyeon's cafes! With over 20 locations in Seoul, I'm sure it'll be easy to miss." The screen cut out to an advertisement playing for the Kim Cafe,
Minhyun could only stare at it in disbelief. He hated how rich she'd become. It was his parents that deserved that fame and fortune, not a backstabber. And she's got to be put in a position of high power? The thought disgusted Minhyun.
"Are you okay? Hey, watch my latte! You're spilling it all over the counter!" Minki sighed and swiped the half empty cup out of Minhyun's hands, ignoring the puddle on the counter and walked back to the back. He had completely missed the dark void that had fallen around Minhyun's face.
"Hyung are you okay?" Seonho turned back to Minhyun, noticing his shaky hands.
"I-i'm fine S-seonho, I just n-need some air." Almost stumbling over Jaehwan's mic stand on the way out, he barely made it outside without breaking anything in frustration. He noticed a poster advertisement with Taeyeon's face plastered on a nearby building.
"You..." Minhyun grabbed the poster and tore it up. Ignoring the looks of a passerby when he slammed it into a nearby bin harshly.
"You'll be sorry......" A million plans of revenge ran through his mind. But he couldn't let his brothers get involved.
So he'll put it on the back burner just for now.
He walked back to his cafe after 10 minutes of calming down, turned the Now Open sign on the door, and greeted the first customer that walked into the cafe.
"Welcome to the Hwang cafe!"
And that concludes the prologue/beginning part!
Now that it's ended, we are moving to the current times :)
And also because I don't have everything laid out exactly, The earliest I may be back is 2 weeks, with everything planned and figured out ;D
But don't expect no updates, I have 3 special chapters planned to write and release before the next part.
!. The development of the story/ various character/plot changes
2.The story of what caused Jessica and Tiffany to be split up and why Jessica was never mentioned to the kids ;)
3, Teaser for the next part of the story!
Thanks to the people who've stuck with me for so long. Honestly whenever I try to start a story I usually don't make it past the third chapter so this is a huge accomplishment!
And I do know this story was getting boring so I hope the second part will be more exciting and interesting to all!
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