“Her enthusiasm for the things she loved, even though it wasn’t a lot of things, was so strong she would tattoo them on her body, and so captivating it could make anyone like the same things instantly. Like the moon, the planets and the stars, or even cats (just in case one damned soul wouldn’t like cats...)”
The teacher explained something Heejin should be paying attention to instead of replaying the moments from the day before over and over on her head, while doing another sketch on her book. This time, of Hyunjin, and not her character. Of Hyunjin’s side profile, of the tattoo on her back.
They had been together twice, and Heejin was already feeling like this? She wouldn’t deny the instant crush she landed on Hyunjin, but... she didn’t ask for it to be that strong.
She sighed, and the bell rang. At last, lunch break. She better hurry, or else Ryujin would be at her classroom’s door shouting at her and Chaewon again-
“I’M HERE, SHIN RYUJIN, CAN YOU GIVE ME A BREA-” But got stuck when she noticed who stood beside Ryujin.
“Hyunjin is here!” Ryujin beamed, resting an arm around her shoulders.
Heejin could hear the gasp followed by a snort from Chaewon, and for a second, she fantasized about landing a punch on her friend.
“I'm starving. If you guys don’t come right now, I’ll go by myself and I’ll be done with my lunch and yours as well before you know it,” Hyejoo said from the corridor, pulling Ryujin and Hyunjin with her.
Heejin peeked at Chaewon’s colorless cheeks. “I won’t tease you if you don’t tease me.”
“Fine,” Chaewon barely said, walking ahead of Heejin. Instant karma is the best.
Heejin followed behind with Chaewon, observing Hyunjin in their uniform. She found it incredible how It didn’t matter what she wore, she could pull anything out so amazingly.
Only when they were arriving at the cafeteria did Heejin notice another girl with them, linking arms with Hyejoo. They stood in line, grouping up, and Hyunjin was already munching on something. Was it bread? Heejin couldn’t help but smile because each time Hyunjin took a bite she would squeal and jump and make sure everyone knew how good that bread was.
“Oh, I forgot to introduce you, this is-”
“Hi, I’m Choi Yerim, nice to meet you!” She interrupted Ryujin, turning to Heejin and Chaewon. She grabbed their hands, shaking them enthusiastically, and her voice was so loud and cheerful it made Hyejoo scowl and recoil.
So that was Yerim. Heejin remembered Hyejoo mentioning her back that night when she referred to them as the coolest of their class. She wore a bright smile that could rip one from Heejin with no effort at all.
They got their food and went to sit all together, Heejin ending up sitting in front of Hyunjin. She swore she didn’t do it on purpose. More like Ryujin and Chaewon sat so strategically Heejin had no option but to sit there. Were they plotting against her together?
“Hey,” Hyunjin greeted, and Heejin did the same, trying not to look too much at her eyes.
Since there were so many people having lunch together, Heejin didn’t feel awkward or uncomfortable at all. She enjoyed listening and laughing as they carried the conversation.
“I think it’s safe to say I’m finally part of this group, the coolest of our class.” Ryujin raised her chin.
“Said who?” Hyejoo frowned, making Yerim snort.
“Me!” Ryujin whined. “What else do I need to do? Is there a ritual or something?”
Hyejoo and Yerim shared a look, lips forcing a thin line. “Yes.”
Ryujin’s eyes shined. “Cool... what is it?!”
“Meet us at the back after classes,” Yerim said near her ear. “It’s something that will prove how cool you really are.”
“Yeah. Do you think you can handle it, Ryujin?” Hyejoo wiggled her eyebrows.
“Of course, a-anything!”
“Guys, enough,” Hyunjin said, catching everyone’s attention. “That’s not funny. They’re pulling a prank on you, Ryujin. There is no ritual whatsoever. What were you guys even planning on doing?”
“Oh, you’re no fun, Hyunjin!” Yerim pouted. “Just something silly-”
“Fine, go ahead with your stupid, silly prank then.” Hyunjin stood up, grabbed her tray and turned.
“Hyunjin,” Heejin called, standing up as well.
She didn’t care if Chaewon had called her, she was already on her way behind Hyunjin. But where in the world she had gone, Heejin didn’t know. She had lost her trace.
Heejin had already seen lots of expressions on Hyunjin’s face, but never that one. The narrowed brows, the evident clenched jaw. She had no idea why she reacted that way. Hyejoo and Yerim were only joking around, right?
It was almost time for next period, so Heejin headed back to her classroom.
Not even when classes were over could Heejin stop thinking about Hyunjin. Did she skip classes after lunch? Was she okay? What was going through her mind?
“You staying?” Chaewon asked, already standing up.
“Yeah, I need to do my maths homework and I know I’ll get distracted if I try to do it at home. You can go ahead.”
“Are you okay?”
“Yeah, just worried about Hyunjin.”
“I don’t really know her, so I have no idea what happened. But if it’s of any help, Hyejoo and Yerim apologized to Ryujin, and they’re just fine.”
“Thank you, Chaewon.” Heejin smiled.
“Alright, have a nice weekend.” Chaewon patted her head.
“You too. Try and talk to Hyejoo, yes?”
Chaewon glared at her and left. Heejin shook her head, giggling. That girl was so obvious.
She opened her maths book, and there was a paper inside she found as she skipped the pages. The paper with possible colleges her teacher recommended her.
Options she did not want.
A sudden urge to rip the paper into a million pieces crossed her mind, but she fought it. She stuffed the paper back into her book and rushed to find the correct page she had to work on, pushing her thoughts to the back of her mind.
As she walked home from school, the sky was so beautiful Heejin couldn’t stop looking up. The sun was about to set, leaving the sky with an orange-ish color, and the moon was already visible. Heejin smiled to herself, as she remembered Hyunjin’s tattoo and how much she loved the moon.
Was she doing alright? What exactly was going through her mind? She could text her. But she wanted to be there for her, hold her hand, listen to her worries, help in any way she could.
Maybe it was fate, maybe just a coincidence, or just her mind playing tricks on her, but she could swear that she saw Hyunjin sitting on a bench on the playground she always passed by, petting a stray cat.
But it was her. Heejin let her legs take her there.
“Mind if I join you?”
Hyunjin looked up at her, blinking at her sight. A drop of sweat ran down her red cheeks.
“Hey.” She smiled and sat next to her, looking down at the black cat who rubbed her head on Hyunjin’s ankles as she kept on scratching behind her ears.
“How did you know I was here?”
“I didn’t, I was on my way home. I walk past this place every day.”
Hyunjin opened but closed it without saying a word, returning her attention to the cat. Heejin’s heart warmed up as she remembered her story, and seeing how much she loved cats.
“Aren’t you cold?” Heejin asked, shivering as she noticed Hyunjin in sporty shorts and a loose t-shirt.
“No, I have been playing basketball.”
Heejin noticed the ball on the other side of the bench. “Oh, you like to play basketball.”
“I love to. I was in our school’s team, you know.”
“Wow, for real? You must be great. Why did you leave?”
“I didn’t. My home teacher removed me from the team because I failed the year. As if basketball was the reason that I didn’t study...” Hyunjin scoffed, shaking her head.
“What was the reason then?”
Hyunjin glanced at her.
“S-Sorry, didn’t mean to pry.”
“I just don’t feel like I have anything to learn at school. They don’t teach me how to be a better at the guitar, or at writing lyrics, or how to compose, or how to promote my band. Why bother, then?”
“But when you graduate high school, you can go to a music school and learn all of that.”
“But I want that now, not two or three years from now.”
“I know it that you have to study things you don’t like or even care.”
“How would you know?”
“Because I feel the same way.”
Heejin stared down, but forced herself to look at Hyunjin, to find her already staring at her with agape. The cat meowed, stealing Hyunjin’s attention.
“Do you wanna go play?” she asked, rubbing the cat’s chin.
“I’m not very good at basketball, but if that would make you feel happy, yes.”
It would be better to leave the conversation as it was, at least for now. Heejin followed Hyunjin, just like the cat did.
“You’ll have to stay here, alright?” Hyunjin squatted by the basketball court entrance, giving the cat a few more pats.
The cat meowed and sat, following Hyunjin with its big yellow eyes. Heejin was sure she had seen a moment like that in a webtoon, one of those that she would never think could be real.
Heejin followed her to the only post that wasn’t already occupied. Hyunjin dribbled, then ran towards it and jumped, making the ball enter the basket with ease.
“I’m no match for you,” Heejin said, approaching her.
“I’ll go easy.”
Heejin positioned herself, ready to try to stop her from scoring. But as easy as she would steal a candy from a kid, Hyunjin spun as she dribbled, ran and scored.
“That’s what you call going easy?” Heejin stood with her arms on her hips.
“I’m sorry, didn’t know you were that slow.”
“Yah!” Heejin frowned at her and Hyunjin cackled. Why did it seem like it had been ages since the last time Heejin had seen her smile? “I’m not slow.”
Hyunjin passed her the ball and Heejin barely caught it on time. She took long, deep breaths while practicing for a bit her dribble. Hyunjin stood in front of her, her bigger stature intimidating. But she had something to prove, didn’t she? So, she lowered the ball and tried to trick Hyunjin by changing the side she aimed for, but Hyunjin was too fast and stole the ball before she could even shoot it.
“Not bad, you almost got me there.” Hyunjin smirked as she changed positions with Heejin, who rolled her eyes.
“Am I?” Hyunjin waited for Heejin to get in position, just to sprint past her and score again, the smirk growing deeper as she made her way back.
“Are you serious? Didn’t I get humiliated enough already?”
Hyunjin nodded, passing her the ball once more. If what Hyunjin wanted was to provoke Heejin to take the game seriously, she got it.
Since Heejin didn’t know any tricks, she had to improvise or just give her best. She sprinted, defending the ball, and as she got nearer the basket, she bumped Hyunjin away and shot the ball.
“Now that’s a fault.” Hyunjin protested.
The ball hit the board instead, since Heejin shot it with too much force, and Hyunjin couldn’t even jump to get it as it bounced towards the other side. Heejin gasped as the ball hit the back of one of guys playing in the opposite post. Heejin ran to get the ball, as the guy turned, eyebrows drawn together.
“Hey, what the do you think you’re doing?” He spat, approaching Heejin.
“I-I’m sorry, it wasn’t on purpose-”
He pushed Heejin by her shoulders, making her stumble back and fall on her . “What is a girl like you even doin---”
Hyunjin launched herself at him, punching his face so hard he turned around and lost his balance. “What do you think you’re doing? Do not ing touch her.”
His friends rushed to his side to help him up.
“If you want to pick a fight, make sure you pick on someone your size, you ing coward.”
He looked down at her, cleaning his lip with the back of his hand and motioning for his friends to stay back. Heejin was able to stand by now, but her body was still frozen in place, her face contorted in terror as he towered over Hyunjin.
“Who do you think you’re calling a coward?”
“The who pushed a girl just because he was hit by a basketball? Did it hurt your head, or just your fragile masculinity?”
He let out an ugly growl and swung his arm. Hyunjin ducked, but didn’t see a punch coming right next from the other side.
“H-Hyunjin!” Heejin cried.
Hyunjin was fast to retaliate, punching his face again even faster this time, kicking his gut right next. He fell on his back with a yelp.
Heejin’s legs finally answered her command. She grabbed Hyunjin’s arm to stop her from jumping on him. Hyunjin looked back at her watery eyes, and her enraged features softened.
“Don’t you dare try to do something like this again.” Hyunjin told him before turning and pulling Heejin with her. “Are you okay?”
Heejin squeezed her arm with a sob, her body being drawn closer to Hyunjin’s. “Yes, but you-”
“No, you’re not, y-your face... he punched you!”
“A very weak punch, I must say.”
“I’m sorry, this is all my fault.”
“You did nothing wrong. Let’s get you home, alright?”
They walked in silence, save for a few quiet sniffs from Heejin.
“Come inside,” Heejin said as they arrived in front of her house. “Let me take care of your face.”
“I can take care of it, don’t worry.”
There was a pause in which their eyes met.
“Alright, lead the way.”
Heejin smiled and did as told, stepping inside her house. “I’m home,” she shouted, but had no answer. How come there wasn’t anyone home yet? She led the way upstairs to her room and opened the door. “Welcome to my crib.”
Hyunjin chuckled, following her inside and looking around. Heejin laughed along, pretending she wasn’t nervous about having her in her room. “I-I’m gonna get something to clean up your face.” She rushed to the bathroom, grabbed a wet cloth and some cream and came back to find Hyunjin scanning the posters on the walls. She sat on her bed and patted the mattress. Hyunjin sat in front of her and Heejin took a proper look at her face. There was a small purplish bruise near her lips, but it didn’t seem that bad.
Slowly, as if asking silently for permission, Heejin held on her chin and pressed the cloth to her bruise. “Does it hurt?”
“You don’t need to act all tough with me.”
“It doesn’t hurt. I told you, he was weak. I’ve taken much stronger punches.”
Heejin let her arm drop, but kept on gently holding her chin. “Why?”
Hyunjin shrugged. “As you said, no one messes with me.”
“Now, no one messes with me either, I see. Do you have a habit on jumping in to defend people?”
An eyebrow rose on Hyunjin’s face.
“Is that why you acted like that during lunch? You don’t like it when people make fun of others or mess with the people you care about.”
“Who said I care about Ryujin?”
Heejin pinched her not bruised cheek.
“Okay, you’re right.” Hyunjin avoided her eyes and bit on her lip. “The way they were acting with her triggered me. I can’t stand seeing people get tricked or bullied. I lose it.”
“You know they were just joking, right? They apologized to Ryujin.”
“I know. I overreacted.”
There was silence and Heejin took the moment to spoon a bit of cream with her fingers. “Hyunjin.”
She looked back at her and Heejin held her chin again, applying the cream on her wound. The silence dragged, but Heejin wanted to ask more, to know more about what lead Hyunjin to feel that way.
“Don’t get hurt.” Was all she said, as she finished.
“I never do. Can I ask you now about your posters?”
Heejin pouted. “Why? What’s wrong with them?”
“Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, The Avengers, Kpop, and Naruto?” Hyunjin snorted, looking around.
“Are you judging me?”
“No, I’m impressed. We have similar taste.”
“You like those as well?”
“Well, I’ve never seen all Naruto episodes,” Hyunjin said, holding a laugh, “but I do love fantasy and adventure stories. Can you guess my favorite?”
“One of my favorites, but no.”
“Hm... Star Wars?”
“Also cool, but also no.”
“How would I know?” Heejin whined.
“Alright, it’s Percy Jackson.”
“Oh, didn’t expect that one. I’ve never seen the movies.”
“You didn’t?!” Hyunjin’s voice rose, startling Heejin. “The movies aren’t the best, the books are much better, but still, let’s watch it!”
“Do you have anything else to do?”
“Heejin?” A voice from downstairs echoed.
“I’m home!” She jumped from the bed. Steps became clearer by the second, and her door flew open.
“Oh, didn’t know you had company.”
“U-Unnie, hey.” Heejin gulped, eyeing Hyunjin. She was already up next to her.
“Hello, I’m Kim Hyunjin, Heejin’s friend.”
“Oh, Hyunjin! I’m Jeon Yoonkyung, Heejin’s older sister, nice to meet you.”
“Likewise.” Hyunjin offered a smile and bowed.
“Heejin speaks a lot about yo-”
“Unnie! W-Where is mom and dad?”
Her sister giggled. “They went out to have dinner together. Hyunjin, since you’re here, why don’t you join us for dinner? A friend of Heejin is a friend of mine.”
“Thank you so much for the invitation, but only if you let me cook.”
“Oh? If you’re offering, it’s because you cook well, and I won’t refuse!”
“I’ll cook something delicious for the both of you.”
“Thank you, Hyunjin, you’re so kind. If you need any help, just knock on my door.” She smiled before closing the door.
“Do you wanna help me with dinner?” Hyunjin asked.
“You don’t need to do it, Hyunjin.”
“But I want to. You insisted in taking care of my bruise, now I insist on making dinner.”
Heejin held her gaze. “Alright, let’s go. I’ll help you.”
“It’s delicious!” Yoonkyung widened her eyes as she munched on a piece of kimbap. Then she tried the kimchi stew and hummed. “How do you cook so well?”
“I used to cook for my brothers,” Hyunjin said, tasting her own food and nodding.
Oh, she had more than one brother?
“Then I’m sure their bellies were always happy eating food this good.”
Hyunjin laughed, hiding with one hand and waving with the other. “Thank you so much.”
Heejin tasted her food and indeed, she would never expect Hyunjin to cook this good. They had their dinner while talking about funny stories of Yoonkyung’s workplace.
“You cooked, I’ll do the dishes,” she said, not letting Hyunjin even help. “You two can go do whatever you wanna.”
“Well, maybe I should get going,” Hyunjin said. “It’s getting late.”
“Is Hyunjin scared of going home alone at night?”
“Oh, I’m so scared. Heejin, please take me home!”
Heejin chuckled, shaking her head. Should she ask her if she wanted to stay and watch Percy Jackson?
“So funny.” No. That way she would have that as an excuse to spend time with Hyunjin some time in the future.
Hyunjin peeked inside the kitchen. “Thank you for having me.”
“No problem, show up more often! Thank you for your delicious cooking.” Yoonkyung waved her goodbye.
“Have a good night,” Hyunjin said before opening the front door.
“You too. Tell me when you arrive.”
“Are you afraid I’ll get lost?”
Heejin rolled her eyes, smiling nonetheless. “Thank you for the food, it was great.”
“Thank you for taking care of me.” Hyunjin smiled at her and stepped outside.
Heat crept under Heejin’s cheeks, as she watched her walking away. She closed the door at last and sighed, unconscious of the lingering smile on her lips as she made her way back to her room.
“Whipped,” her sister said from the kitchen.
“S-Shut up, unnie!”
A/N: I really love that moon phase tattoo so much, and actually I wanna do it myself lmao
Hyewon becoming more obvious hehehe and I really don't know why do I always need a scene where one of the characters fights someone AHAHAHAHAH and for some reason, I imagine that guy being Hansol from woomanna LMAOOOOOOOO well :))))) but hey, HYUNJIN IS COOL.
Hope you liked the chapter and the drawings and yep Heejin is completely whipped already
Thank you reading this story, and for the comments, votes, and subs! ♥️