Touching Beauty
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“I smile, loving how his words feel against my skin. Inside my heart.”

—Colleen Hoover, It Ends with Us


The rumors are true.


When one dares to feel an emotion that has enough action potential to totally decimate their entire person, the thought of this imminent destruction is not fazing. Who is crazy enough, audacious enough to want to feel this? Feel this rose grow along the bronchioles and capillaries of the lungs, its thorns piercing through delicate tissue? Who wants to willingly destroy themselves from the inside-out? Of course, no one will answer yes. The only case in which this question even goes answered is if the method of death is described in the torturous, sweetest, delicate way imaginable.


Imagine it. Imagine the one who tucks bombs into your heart by simply existing. Imagine them on top of you, their skin draped over yours, covering you in a blanket of warmth at the same time avalanches of snow fall from the clouds. Imagine brushing your fingers across theirs, along the railroad tracks of each joint, over the mountains of their knuckles, to the smooth expanse of their arm. Imagine their hands traveling down your body, caressing the parts of you that you’ve always been a little insecure of, not caring that your waist may have more skin than normal, running their thumbs across your hipbones, inciting shivers even if their hands are the warmest thing you’ve ever known. Imagine kissing their lips, and how even if you haven’t touched them, you know you want to press yours against theirs to find out, to chart unknown territory, to become a cartographer with a specialization in lips. Imagine the way your name rolls off their tongue, how one or a few syllables of something you’ve written on the tops of your papers since forever seems to have the same sound as a song.


Their very existence is your very destruction. Your flaw. Your weakness. The reason why your heartbeat is irregular.


Now, who doesn’t want a death like that?


“Sunhee!” Joanne’s now consistently annoying voice shatters my reverie. “What are you doing? You’re supposed to be stirring the batter.” She moves my hand for me though it’s laborious for her, so she stops after a few rotations. “Why do you keep staring out into space? It’s Wednesday afternoon, and we’re swamped! We don’t have time for this.”


“Sorry.” I lamely apologize, not able to conjure of a legitimate reason. “I’m just thinking of some stuff. Give me a break. A five minute one at most.”


She ignores my request and continues babbling. “Is it Junmyeon? Ever since his last visit on Sunday, you haven’t been able to get him off your mind, have you?”


“Not really,” I confess while shrugging, “but you can’t blame me for that.”


“Oh, yes, I can!” she exclaims, and something clatters against the tiles of the kitchen floor. “Look what you made me do,” she murmers and tosses something into the sink where it lands into something else that splashes me slightly on the arm. “Sorry. But seriously? I get that you have a crush on him, but this is no reason to slack off.”


“I’m not slacking off!” The lie doesn’t even sound believable—mainly because I don’t believe it myself. It is true; I’ve done nothing productive today.


“Then stir that batter,” Joanne retorts, her voice sharper than the edge of cut obsidian. “And if I catch you gazing off into nothingness while you’re doing nothing, then you’ll be conveniently too busy to meet with your boyfriend.”


“What?” The thought of having to ditch Junmyeon is terrifying and embarrassing, but the word boyfriend is electrocuting. “He’s not my boyfriend, Joanne.”


“Yet.” She chortles to herself, making me blush harder. “Let’s not place any bets on this, okay?”



- - - - -



Friday cannot possibly tread any slower. There’s an influx of customers in the mornings—always, but as the day progresses, there’s fewer and fewer, and the sounds get less ambient with each passing. By evening, there’s only a few patrons which leaves Joanne and I with too much time to waste. While she babbles on about some series called Your Lie in April, I sit on the counter in the kitchen since she’s cleaning the floor which she does inherently. Or maybe it’s because I spilled something I don’t know about. It’s that tedious, and waiting for Junmyeon is the only thing left to do.


Sunday is the only day he visited this week, and it’s worrisome. How are his exams going? Is he swamped with other work? Does he have a job? Is he busy or am I easy to forget?


“What time is it?” I ask Joanne as the sound of her scrubbing grows nearer.


“It’s 6:12PM. Stop asking.” Her voice is nearly below my feet. “Why don’t you sit out there? In the dining area? That way you’ll be the first to know when he comes in.”


“I don’t know.” I panic while imagining the thought. “That doesn’t sound like a good idea.”


“Are you crazy?” Joanne’s voice travels from the ground up. The next thing I know, she’s breathing—nearly spitting by the sound of it—into my face. “He likes you, Sunhee. You like him too. Don’t let him get the wrong idea. That’s how bad things happen! When people don’t communicate, it all goes to hell. And you’re literally just going to sit out there. It’s not like I’m asking you to—”


“Okay, okay!” I raise my palms in a signal for her to stop. “I needed a pep talk not an ultimatum.”


“I don’t know,” Joanne calls out after me. “You could use a few ultimatums in your life.”


The meaning of what she means to say is beyond my understanding, so I allow Beau to lead the way to the same table—or one that feels like it—where Junmyeon and I talked. The seat is cold, Beau whines, and my thumbs twiddle themselves. It’s like that for a while. Nothing of importance is accomplished, and the bell on the door doesn’t chime.


Then it does.


Beau shifts under my legs, and the next thing I know, someone’s hugging me from behind. The smell of soft detergent on their clothes hits me first, and then it’s their cologne. It’s subtle, pleasant, and definitely not feminine. No, it’s a masculine scent that accompanies the muscle in their arms that squeeze around my waist just tight enough so that it feels cozy, but loose enough to allow plenty of breathing room. After this sudden closure of open space, a blanket of summer wraps itself around my back and torso. It isn’t puzzling since it’s nearly the end of spring, and the weather for the past few weeks has been annoyingly hot, but what’s befuddling is that the warmth is balmy rather than smoldering.


A breath that embodies the soul of spring washes over my ear. “Hey.”




My voice shakes with anxiety. “Hey.”


“How are you?” Junmyeon pulls away, and the chair—when he pulls it from the under the table—makes the same noise as it does before. “I should have visited you more, but I got really caught up in everything. I lost my study notes, and my study group is practically made up of a bunch of entitled losers, so they wouldn’t share.” He sighs. “How are you, again?”


“I’m fine.” I chuckle lightly. “It’s been a slow week.”


“Yeah, it has,” he agrees. “So, are you ready?”


“Ready for what?”


“What?” He sounds just as confused as me. “We’re going to hang out, remember?”


“Yeah, but aren’t we doing that here?” The pace of my heart drops with displeasure. In my personal experience, hanging out anywhere else simply doesn’t work. Art galleries are useless. Exploring the city is worse. Walking in the park is okay, but it’s too hot to enjoy something like that.


“What are you talking about?” Junmyeon inquires, and he rests his warm palm over the back of my hand. “Why would we stay here when we go out in the city?”


“It’s a great idea.” I attempt to undo the misconception. “You know, if I could see and all, I’m up for it. But—”


“What are you saying?” Junmyeon laughs heartily, further confusing me. “There’s more to a city than its skyscrapers and art galleries. Besides, those are tourist traps. Everyone’s done them, and what’s the fun in that? We can wait in the lines of small restaurants just to smell what they’re cooking in the kitchen. We can visit the library and run our fingers through the spines of old books. We can walk over the bridges and hear the sound of a thousand cars rushing past. There’s so much to do in the city.”


“I’ve never thought of it like that…” I trail off, feeling stupid that such thoughts have never occurred.


“Well, then we should go. Right now.” Junmyeon takes my hand in his and helps me out of the chair. “Come on. If we leave now, we can do everything I planned.”


“You planned this?” I pretend that everything is normal, everything is fine, but his hand is touching mine, his hand is touching mine, his hand is touching—


“If a guy doesn’t plan a date, then how is he supposed to let the girl know she’s important?” A smile lingers in his voice, and my heart is running so fast, and Usain Bolt is going to be very jealous if he finds out that my heart beats faster than he can sprint.


“This is a date?” I murmur, and my cheeks grow hotter than an incandescent lamp burning for hours.


“I—no, I mean yes.” Junmyeon has the habit of running his mouth, but it has just come to my attention that he takes frequent trips over his words too. “I mean, if you want. I’m not trying to suggest anything here. I mean, this is all up to you. We can be just two friends ‘hanging out’ or whatever. It doesn’t really matter—I mean, yes, this does matter. It matters a lot actually. Okay—no. It doesn’t matter. Wait, no. What I’m trying to say is that it does matter, but—”


“It’s a date.” An unintentional giggle flutters up my throat. “Junmyeon, it’s okay.”


“Is it really?” He laughs forcedly, and his drops my hand. “No, it’s not okay. I don’t want to force you into something you’re not going to enjoy. And god, I’m honestly the worst at—”


“Junmyeon, come on.” I reach forward with intention of finding his arm to comfort his worries, but the world is never on my side, and my hand finds a cool button. This I’m certain of because it feels exactly like the button on my shorts. It goes without a doubt that my hand is on the button of Junmyeon’s pants. “I’m so sorry. Oh my, god. I didn’t mean to that. God, I’m so sorry.”


“Stop.” Surprisingly, his voice cannot hold itself up as it falls apart in laughter. “Sunhee, you’re so funny.” His hand grabs mine, and he squeezes it tightly. “It’s fine, okay? I don’t care. I really don’t. You’re blind. It’s normal. It’s not like you’re trying to, you know, purposely do anything.”


“Right.” I nod, but my hand decides to tremble anyway. It remembers that time it slightly burned itself touching scalding bath water.


“Don’t be afraid.” Junmyeon reassures me when he feels the tremors. “I’m not big and threatening. I don’t have guns strapped to my leg, if that’s what you’re worried about.” He releases his grip on my hand, and he runs it down what feels like his arm. “Here. See for yourself. I don’t have concealed weapons, alright?” The tone of his voice

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Touching Beauty //
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I remember reading this years ago… and now I’m rereading. It feels like one of the studio ghibli movies you know… all the softness and world building where each movement is felt? And your writing always amaze me
This story is so soft🥺❤️
sb1202 #2
Its been a while since I read this but I just wanted to comment on how beautiful this story is. Not only does it feature one of the less written about members, but it also touches on a more realistic relationship. From the first chapter, I fell in love with the characters and the setting of the story. Thank you for writing something so breathtaking ❤
Chapter 7: 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭

This is so freaking beautiful, fgs. I swear it’s so beautiful that it could be showed in the museum.

Despite their relationship, I LOVE LOVE that you do not left the other ones behind. The way you always give us what was going on in their life, how was Joanne love life, how Jongdae getting voice lesson and getting one step closer to his dream, how Sehun saved up and working his off for a revenge, how she developed her friendship with Sehun or how Sehun need to talk with Jongdae due to his complain. These detail I LOVE IT ALL.

Thank you for amazing story as always ❤️❤️❤️
Chapter 5: I confess that I cracked at girl running to Jongdae asking for contour tip lol

but wow , that 'i'm blind and I can still see you shine' T---T you know what, I think the most adorable thing in this chapter is Junmyeon "still" explain to her how thing is going, including his blushing.

The friendship between those thee are also beautiful TT I hope everyone got friends like this ♥

but damn, I need to say this, you are such an amazing writer. Your style of writing suite the story so so well no matter what genre / vibe / feel it is.
Chapter 4: Not only Junmyeon, this story is dangerous too.
If I had diabetes, I would end up at the hospital when I finished this
Chapter 3: PLEASEEEEEE The way his describe kissing when he asked her 😭😭😭😭😭😭 and he was so polite. I didn’t expect him to ask at all

And the way she feels like dying over this 😭😭😭😭
Chapter 1: WOW 😯 I regret that I come here so late.

Ok, this is my super first time reading the story that the main character is blind. I love that the idea is not what we can easily find, and her character is not in the dark mode. She is being.. accept(?) and positive with a tint of sarcasm that give her character more color and that is really amazing. Even we could not “see” Junmyeon (of course how could we, it’s her point of feeling - pof) i literally feel his struggle to make a conversation with the pretty cashier he found a t the bakery 😭 gosh, isn’t that cute?
Chapter 7: This story was so beautiful. Thank you for writing it!
danielaerimee #9
Chapter 5: Love the word reciprocity now. Thank you.
waee09 #10
Chapter 3: My heaaarttttttt. Omgggggg soooo beautifully writttennnn