ACT I: Chapter 1

Before Her Very Eyes


With a deep breath, Arin went into the convenience store that was right outside the building she lived in. She kept her eyes on the floor and her hands in her pockets, and lowered her head so that her hair covered her face and line of vision.

She grabbed a basket from the counter and quickly browsed through the aisles for cat food and toilet paper. That was all she needed for now.

When she was done collecting her items (plus a bar of chocolate she craved while browsing), she slowed her steps and her anxiety swelled. Now was the time for the dreaded interaction.

She stood up straight and put her frizzy hair behind her ear, and locked eyes with the boy who worked at the counter. Maybe she should have just kept her head down, but she really wanted to look at him.

God, he was cute, she thought as she neared him. She kept her eyes fixated on his face, frightfully aware of a very deadly word that was dangerously close to where she was looking. However, she was careful not to let herself read that word which was pinned to his chest, no matter how tempting it was.

This boy worked the 2pm-11pm shift. Arin had gone to that convenience store so often that she memorized who worked when, and this one was definitely her favorite. He was the cutest, and the nicest, and the one she often daydreamed about, living unfulfilled fantasies of love and romance through him.

“Good afternoon,” he told her, flashing her a kind smile.

“Afternoon,” she replied, trying to smile but coming off extremely awkward instead. Her hands fumbled to place her items on the counter for him to scan.

“What’s your cat’s name?” the boy asked as he scanned the barcode of her new box of cat food.

“Uh… Meemo,” she mumbled as she nervously picked the skin around her nails. She dreadfully wished that the boy would ask no more questions.

“That’s a cute name. Recently I’ve actually been wanting to get a cat, but my mom’s telling me I should get a girlfriend instead,” he joked with a light chuckle.

Arin continued smiling awkwardly, hoping her lack of response would make him stop trying to be friendly with her.

“I’m Joshua, by the way,” the boy said.

“Huh?” she felt her heart stop.

“Joshua. That’s my name.”

Arin froze. Her nerves made her drive her nail deeper into the skin around her thumb.

“What’s wrong?” he asked when he saw how her face had become yellow.

“Uh… I have to go,” she said before swiftly turning away and leaving the convenience store, never looking back as Joshua called for her to pay and get her things. But she was definitely never returning.

You see, she could no longer be around this boy, because that dangerous word she had consciously wanted to avoid was now in her head. She had now inadvertently carried a weapon that she may accidentally use against him.

One slip-up, and he’d be gone.

She learned his name. And for Arin, a person’s name was all she needed to kill them.

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Chapter 73: Hi authornim! I can't believe that I finished it within one seating but that was how hooked I was in your story. The characters were written so well. Their arc have always been engaging and they were justified according to their decisions and various unintended circumstances. I've been an avid fan of your writing since Heart of Ice and I want to say that you're a marvelous writer! I did not expect myself to root for Jeonghan as Arin's lover because he was awful with her in the first place but you managed to make your readers understand the complexity of his character and his situation in the story. The ending was bittersweet for me and it that in love, there would always be a person who is bound to get hurt. I was delighted when you revealed the truth about Arin's soulmate. The chemistry between Jeonghan and Arin was all over the place and I can feel it in my bones even if their scenes were written only in sentences and paragraphs. I never felt the tension and longing when she's with Woozi. It felt forced and abrupt that it didn't click. But with Jeonghan, it was like they're a perfect puzzle piece to each other, even with the curses that they had. I even found myself tearing up when he brought her a limited edition album of Chilli. That shows how much he loved her. This is my most favorite story of yours! Thank you very much for sharing it to us and I can't wait to read your upcoming Joshua fanfic.
waee09 #2
Chapter 72: How. Is. This. Not. A. Hollywood. Blockbuster. Yet.?!?!?! Someone , anyone.... THIS NEEDS TO BE A MOVIE!!! it's a work of art! So so so souch appreciation and love for this. Thank you so much authornim! Thank you thank you for this masterpiece! Really injected a bit of life into my grey real life. Thank you!
waee09 #3
Chapter 71: W.T.F I read this in 1 seating... it's been a good 4 to 5 hours.... your writing and storyline, so magical, i was hooked for the first word. BUT THIS CHAPTER OHMAAAAAIGAWDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!
Soraya6 #4
Chapter 73: I was not expecting Woozi's POV but I'm glad we got to know more about his character, as he has been intriguing for most part of the story! This is a great closure that give us both insight on Arin and Jeonghan's relationship after the end of the story, and lets us know that Woozi is a good person that deserves to be happy as well. Thank you for this special chapter! I
waee09 #5
Chapter 33: What a sweet heart our Jun
Chapter 73: I sure wasn't expecting Woozi's POV! But after a thought, his true intentions were never really confirmed, or revealed rather, until the last few chapters... so this special chapter definitely gives his character some justice! I think it's a perfect chapter. It really proved the kind of person Woozi is, if not the person he's grown to be after everything. He did what he felt was right to do even if he had to set his personal feelings aside and that's also like making up for his past wrongs, toward Arin specifically. And with it he learned how to truly love someone, regardless of whether or not he's with her. It's sad but very sweet.

As for Jeonghan and Arin, of course, getting together didn't mean the challenges in their way were over, their insecurities they got from the years of being in such situations really showed throughout this and it's honestly realistic. I love it. She lost her confidence and so did he, but I know they can gain it back together! It made me kind of sad though because Arin should've known that the uncursed Jeonghan was the real Jeonghan, the one who fought through his curse for years and loved her, not because she was the only girl around him... (If I know at this point she is his entire world and he said himself he didn't want it any other way and that's absolutely sweet) but I get that she just wanted him to experience too what the world outside was like now that he could. They just needed more time to adjust and to learn the new way of communicating with each other and thank god for Woozi!
Magical_Girl #7
Chapter 73: Omg author-nim you've no idea how much I miss seeing your updates and how much I miss getting your comment replies ㅠㅠ it's the only thing which made me open my aff website after months

Btw istg I came for an Jihoon endgame since the beginning, but throughout the story I wanted Arin to end up with Jeonghan, and now I feel so hurt knowing why it's not Jihoon ;;

And ohh guess what I'm currently on my journey with heart of ice! ;)
Chapter 73: Everyone needs a woozi in their life. He may made mistakes before, but man his self redemption is on another level
Gracegesang #9
Chapter 73: Woozi is such a good friend to Arin. Jeonghan and Arin are lucky to have him. Happy ending with Arin and Jeonghan now...Meemo too!