i. you met her in september and she looks beautiful behind sunset falls
Moonbyul doesn’t get out much often but the autumn breeze compels her, beautiful dried leaves that reminds her of history sneaks in through the coffee shop’s barely closed windows to land on ancient books resting by its sill.
She drinks her half empty espresso, the only thing keeping her awake as she continued tapping her keyboard, a thousand word and more of an essay, she’s stressed but it’s her favourite season. Autumn sunsets were beautiful.
The coffee shop’s getting more and more crowded, customer’s usually filling in close to 5pm and Moonbyul types a few more paragraphs, itching to finish her work, the dimming sun urging her and so she did. It was a part of her life, watching the fall’s sunset. It reminds her of numerous things. Like the story of the sun dying for the moon, night creeping in, the end of day. It was a beautiful tragic scenery, as if hope was snuffed out of the world even though it isn’t like that. Moonbyul always found herself enraptured by a bittersweet tragedy.
There’s a hill just up ahead, a few blocks from the café, and it had always been a favourite spot, a view of lush green tress of summer, snowy white hills on winter, colourful flowers blooming throughout spring and the mesmerizing night sky of stars on a perfect evening. Moonbyul’s favourite was the color of brown mixing with the orange yellow glow of the leaving sun.
Huffing, she barely makes it in time, the sky already so orange and when she looks up her breath leaves her. Beautiful. Enchanting. Ethereal.
Brown hair flows with the breeze as pale skin bathes against sunset rays and she glows, like a fragile angelic presence and Moonbyul’s mouth is sewed shut because how can someone be this beautiful?
Moonbyul’s gaze doesn’t wander, even when the unknown girl’s eyes fluttered open and met hers, even when she’s missing the scenery of the setting sun because she’s beautiful. It was a sin to be this beautiful, to be more than the word beautiful.
The sun finally sets. Moonbyul coughs a jumbled string of words before becoming more coherent.
“Hi, I’m Moon,” Moonbyul splutters.
The girl chuckles, melodic voice that echoes inside Moonbyul’s ears.
“Nice too meet you, Moon. I’m Sun.”
ii. she calls you friend and it (doesn’t) makes you happy
It’s not until Yongsun, or Sun, calls her mid-afternoon for their 30th sunset escapade (it became a tradition) that Moonbyul feels the churn in her stomach the moment the words left Yongsun’s lips. Like an arrow piercing through her stomach. Or an ache in her beating heart.
She can’t help it. Her feelings have been funny lately.
She glows―Yongsun glows. Like the first time they ever met. Like the living sun that gives life to everything in its wake because surely Moonbyul feels Yongsun’s radiating presence, filling a hole of emptiness inside Moonbyul, a craving that she never knew existed until it was seemingly satisfied. Yongsun. Her name fits her so perfectly.
So now they lay under starry skies of dreams and wishes, the sunset having passed moments ago but Yongsun loves the stars. Yongsun loves the moon and the glittering night sky and she stays so Moonbyul stays.
It’s unfair. Even the light of the silvery moon that soaks against Yongsun’s skin makes her beautiful.
Yongsun turns to her and smiles.
“I like this,” She says, light in her eyes and Moonbyul could care less about the universe beyond because Yongsun’s eyes were galaxies of emotions. Yongsun was her whole universe.
“Yeah?” Moonbyul’s reply came late, voice cracking and struggling, blood pounding against her ears she could barely hear her own breathing.
Yongsun’s stare doesn’t relent, eyes searching hers and Moonbyul swallows the feelings that’s caught up in because she’s so close and it hurts to be this close.
“Us being friends, Moon.” Yongsun breathes and smiles again and her eyes also smiles and she was beautiful but she was too beautiful and right after her beautiful voice produces words that stabs at Moonbyul despite its good intention.
“Thank you for being the best friend I’ve ever had.”
“You’re welcome,” She replies despite the wounds in her heart, despite the full-blown aching feeling that erupts inside her because she can’t be Yongsun’s friend but Yongsun needs her to be her friend and she does because Yongsun’s too beautiful and she’s completely enraptured.
Their eyes meet.
I like you so much, her heart cries.
“I like this too,” Moonbyul smiles.
iii. you watch her leave and she never comes back
Forever’s too much and too long and Yongsun won’t stay forever, Moonbyul knows.
Starting with the absences.
Sometimes Yongsun doesn’t show up, Moonbyul sitting alone along the hills, eyes gazing and devouring every beautiful scenery but it’s never the same. The sun’s not as bright, the stars incomparable, the light dimmer in her eyes and she wonders if those eyes of hers were burned for looking at something as beautiful as Yongsun too much and sometimes Moonbyul wonders if this was her punishment but if she gets to see Yongsun every waking day then she would embrace it.
But Yongsun’s fading. Slipping from her fingers. Distance growing, every conversation becoming rare and colder and her heart grows cold with the widening distance and she’s not sure if she can take it.
Moonbyul’s not sure how to live without Yongsun because she was her sun and she came like a hurricane, like lightning, burning her, leaving scars that can never be mended because she’s become more than a part of Moonbyul’s world. Yongsun became Moonbyul’s world.
Still she walks farther, her back getting smaller as gets harder to reach and the skies cries with her, her body cold against the merciless rain as she stares at the pavement where Yongsun gives her a fleeting smile.
Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Yongsun, Moonbyul can’t take it.
The light continues to dim, like the everyday sun setting behind hills and valleys and Moonbyul’s hope continues to sink.
Moonbyul watches it all disappear, ears ringing against the ear splitting noise of being alone.
Another kind of light engulfs her.
Moonbyul lets it.
iv. she watches you leave and she never chases you
Late December before everything else, three months of friendship and Yongsun’s already in love.
But she was dying. It’s funny. Haha.
Yongsun doesn’t like autumn. It’s beautiful, she knows, Moonbyul’s completely a slave to the season’s beauty but not her. Not her because everything is dying, withering, decaying. A bittersweet tragedy.
Moonbyul does love that.
And Yongsun did. There was a time she did. Approximately three months ago in that same hill, her eyes unable to shed any more tears, downcast, staring at the hundred feet free fall from there and wondering what would it be like?
She takes a step closer to the edge of ending everything.
It would be tragic to die so young but would it be beautiful? Gruesome? Morbid? Yongsun wouldn’t know by then. She’s ready anyways. She takes a deep breath. And she hears an audible gasp.
Her eyes catches silver hair, probably dyed, before she actually registers there was someone else besides herself. Yongsun steps back a bit.
“Hi, I’m Moon,” Stranger breathes, a nervous smile painted on her lips and Yongsun’s amused, intrigued, captivated.
Moon. Sun. Oh.
It will never end well.
The rain burns against her skin, every heavy drop igniting fires inside her and everything hurts Yongsun could burst into fire. But she doesn’t. And more often than not she wants to die but this time she really really wants to die.
Behind her Moonbyul’s cries echoes, splits against the heavy downpour and she almost stops. She can’t stop. She shouldn’t.
Yongsun stopped believing in fairy tales when she was nine but there’s an engraved mark of a fading moon permanently engraved on her wrist and the trails of voices of a long told tale stuck in her brain, in her soul, in her heart and when she closes her eyes she sees the accusing looks, the disgust, the hatred. Moonbyul deserved more than that.
When Yongsun met Moonbyul she found a reason to live.
When Yongsun met Moonbyul she found someone to die for.
“I like this,” Yongsun says as her gaze fleets to the silver haired girl, forcing down the million other words she wants to say and how the hundreds of i like you, i like you, i like you she wants to scream but doesn’t because she shouldn’t.
Moonbyul looks at her, pain in her eyes and Yongsun’s sorry but she can’t do anything about it.
Youngsun doesn’t stop looking, trying to memorize every feature in the girl’s face because the world is cruel and she’s not sure when this will end, when everything will fall apart. She wants to remember.
“Us being friends, Moon,” Yongsun finally says, a sudden nostalgic feeling for something she’s still yet to lose settling at the pit of her stomach.
Thank you for being there that day. For giving me numerous other days. For showing me the world.
“Thank you for being the best friend I’ve ever had.”
Thank you for everything.
v. you see her again but she doesn’t see you
Yongsun’s eyes burns even with the cool air of the café Moonbyul used to brag to her about and maybe that’s it because everything she sees reminds her of Moonbyul, moonbyul, MOONBYUL and Moonbyul’s also sitting a few tables away, wrapped in white bandages and a scar’s visible on her right temple and Yongsun continues to stare even when Moonbyul gave her a polite hesitant smile which just hurts because she doesn’t call Yongsun and the recognition ceased to exist in Moonbyul’s eyes.
Yoongsun ceased to be Moonbyul’s world and she should be happy because she’s a ty world but Moonbyul is still her world. It’s unfair. Yongsun’s being unfair. She let her go first.
vi. you died for her but she’ll never know
She finally avoids looking but only for a moment, her heart still grieving but this was right.
“Did the sun really have to suffer for the moon?” A small sharp voice interrupts her reverie and Yongsun smiles at the young three-year-old reading beside her, clutching the last page of the book, burning holes against the last lines but Yongsun didn’t have to look because she’s had it memorized, printed in her brain it could never be removed.
Yongsun picks up Minji, a sweet kid she was babysitting at the moment and the sole reason why she was forced to be back at the nostalgic café in the first place, and puts her in her lap, trying to stop herself from gazing back at a certain person a few tables away.
She gives her young friend another smile, albeit a tired one this time.
Still Yongsun couldn’t stop herself and as she looks back again, Moonbyul happily smiling and laughing with someone else, her heart aches all over again and for the hundredth time she looks away and her eyes settles on the book on the table, it’s lines in bold letter as if it was mocking her.
This is the story of how the sun loved the moon so much she died every night so that she could breathe.
“Yongsunnie~?” Minji interrupts, tugging at Yongsun’s sleeves.
Yongsun takes a deep agonizing breath.
“I’m not sure, Minji,” She starts but she also can’t start letting go because Moonbyul’s hard to erase and Yongsun will always be reminded on every ‘what ifs’ and ‘what could have been’.
But again Moonbyul is smiling and that’s all that matter. That’s always what mattered.
Outside the sun starts to set, sky painted orange red, another day ending and everythings beautiful but dead like her memories with Moonbyul’s laugh and smile and now Yongsun loves the autumn and the setting sun.
Yongsun breathes shakily.
“Still, I’m sure it’s still worth it in the end.”