it could've been anyone.« trauma. »「darawon semi-au」
The more Jiwon avoids getting involved, the more he’s captured by the woman he just considered a bubbly hoobae.
a.n. Thanks to another poll on twitter I finally decided the title for this chapter! “it could’ve been anyone” was the most popular choice.
ch.3 - it could've been anyone.
The tent bar in the distance started blurring out, my vision started to spin before my very eyes. I tried hard to walk straight in front of me, in the attempt to reach Jiwon-oppa who distanced himself to have a call with my phone.
“P-please don’t call Wonjun-ssi…”. I pleaded him, tugging the fabric on his sleeve to catch his attention.
“Wonjun-ssi? Who is he?”.
“Is he your manager?”.
“N-ne..my manager-nim… I’ll be in t-trouble and I don’t want to bother him, it’s late”.
He glanced at me, furrowing his brows. It felt as if he was debating whether to help me hide this unscheduled night outing or just call Wonjun-ssi and get over it.
Lately I started to avoid riding the company’s car, I had proof they monitored me 24/7 and it bothered me so much. I was already locked up in my flat and having them control my every movement just made me feel suffocated.
“I’ll call a cab for you then, is that okay?”.
My heart overflowed with gratitude; I couldn’t believe he’d accept to do that so readily, even going to the lengths of calling himself when I could’ve done that myself.
oppa is so kind...
He probably felt pity for me, knowing how much my manager would scold me for bothering him at this hour because I was drunk.
i’m such a bad girl huhu~
sneaking out from wonjun-ssi kekeke~
chaerin-ah, look out for the new gizibe in town!
I rubbed my eyes and tried to focus on Jiwon-oppa’s figure.
“Yes, we’re in the street in front of the market”. He gave instructions on the phone.
why is everything moving in front of me?
I could swear I was standing perfectly still but, If I closed my eyes, I’d be almost sure to be the passenger on a rocky boat ride.
“A-ah!”. I tripped onto seemingly nothing and crashed against Jiwon-oppa, who immediately held onto me.
My face slammed onto his chest; I couldn’t help but inhale the musky cologne he wore, as I buried my face in his hoodie.
kung kung kung kung kung kung
His heart beat incredibly fast, I could hear it pounding in my ears. Anything else muted as I focused on the sound hammering in his chest.
omo? what am I doing?
why am I being like this?
i shouldn’t fall for him
don't fall for him dara.
I swallowed up, the soju still intoxicating my body. I knew that the liquor gave me the courage I honestly didn’t want to possess.
I hated falling so hard for him when he didn’t even look at me.
I hated the fact that he gave me courage.
don't be a fool.
The guilt I felt for making him feel uncomfortable because of my stupid feelings. But then again, why did he invite me out if he wanted to avoid me so bad?
What if he was yet another man to play with my innocence?
Guilt, sadness, rage and soju mixed up inside my stomach, coming out of my mouth as incomprehensible murmurs as I tugged on his hoodie.
I’m so foolish, please forgive me.
I’m so foolish for falling for someone who doesn’t even look at me.
“I-I’m sorry Jiwon-oppa…”. The words I locked deep down came out as I thought of them.
“W-what do you mean?”. His husky voice lurked in my ears because of our bodies being so close together.
“I’m sorry for liking you this much”.
My entire being was invested in discomfort, dizzy and dazed, my mouth moved by itself.
“I-If you don’t like me back just say it!”.
I tried screaming at the top of my lungs, but the dryness in my throat prevented me from doing so. A croaky whisper came out of my lips instead, as I buried my face in his clothes even deeper, to hide my tears.
I slammed my fist onto his chest, one time, two times, stronger after every attempt; he did not move an inch.
“D-DON’T PLAY ME, JUST BECAUSE I LIKE YOU!”.
My fist flew in the air once again, ready to hit him out of frustration, but he swiftly blocked my arm with his right hand, holding my wrist firmly.
“w-why’d you bother me if you don’t want me...?”. I muttered under my breath.
I looked up at him, trying to find his face in the blurry mess I saw through my eyes.
“y-you s-stop playing with me…”.
My pleading was blocked by the urge to cry, tears were already spilling from my eyes, not matter how hard I tried to keep them locked away.
“That’s not it”. He stated, still holding my arm.
“THEN WHY, S-STUPID EUN CHODING! WHY WOULD-“.
Jiwon-oppa suddenly let go of my hand, pulling me into a tight embrace instead.
I could hear it again, his heart pounding like crazy, even if he looked perfectly calm.
He rested his chin onto my head, caressing my back slowly, like a father that is trying to calm down his own kid.
“I’m not”. He repeated.
I broke the embrace and stepped back, still uncertain of his sincerity.
He stepped towards me, slowly, before looking away for a second and biting his lips.
what is he doing?
His hand gently cupped my cheek, his gaze slowly moving from my eyes to my scrubbed lips.
No matter how chilly that night was, his skin against mine felt feverish.
He bent down slightly, never diverting his gaze from me. His face became closer and closer towards me, I could feel his slow breathing.
The taxi driver honked, startling Sandara, who stepped back with her wobbly legs.
way to ruin the moment, huh?
It was fascinating how that girl made me lose control over my actions.
first, she makes me flee from the studio and then she brings me to kiss her when really, I wanted to reject her?
this girl is really something else.
I was debating myself whether it was the soju in my bloodstream moving my body or the hormones. Deep down I knew those were just petty excuses.
No matter how lonely and drunk I was, I never managed to do those sorts of things, even when beautiful women tempted me. I just couldn’t.
All I could see was Sooyeon’s face. Even quickly peeking at other women made me feel unfaithful, even after years and years had passed from our divorce, the moment our love withered.
That was the first time the memory I had of her didn’t interrupt me from getting closer to another women.
i'm ing tipsy.
It may have been for the best. It would’ve been wrong to do anything since she was so wasted, I didn’t want to take advantage of Dara in that way.
I shook my head and walked towards the car while the driver slowly rolled down his window. Dara closely followed me, stumbling on her feet.
“Ok so this is the address-…”.
I instructed the taxi driver to take care of her until she arrived home safely, he nodded after I handed him a decent amount of money for the ride, he really couldn’t hide the joy on his face as soon as he reached for the bills.
“T-thank you… -“. Dara mumbled, looking at me with watery eyes.
“I trust you to go back home safely, can you do that?”.
The driver got out of the taxi to help her get into the backseat as I waved them goodbye. It was for the best, separating prevented me from doing anything I could regret tomorrow morning.
was I really going to kiss her?
what's gotten into me?
i must be crazy.
With the task at hand handled I started walking the other direction, wondering what time I’d be home.
I knew I had another day of recording ahead of me and drinking and smoking weren’t exactly the best preparations for that, added to the fact I was still in the centre of Seoul, 30 minutes away from my apartment.
I sighed as I headed towards the main street; I could stop a taxi from the side of the road because calling one wasn’t a choice. My phone was dead, that’s why I lent dara’s to call her a cab.
~ parararing parararing ~
I reached inside the pocket of my coat, grabbing the phone that was vibrating in it.
7 missed calls
this must be Dara’s phone.
ack- what a fool, I haven’t returned it yet.
“Aish- how could I forget that?!”. I panicked on the spot.
I was so focused calming her down that I totally forgot to give her back the phone.
I rushed back, hoping with all my being for the cab to still be there.
A terrorizing scream almost made me in my pants, stopping me in my tracks.
“What the hell is going on today?”. I thought to myself.
I quickly scanned the street for the source of noise, the sidewalk was deserted, all I could see were two figures in the distance.
“DON’T TOUCH ME YOU PIG”.
It was Dara who was struggling, trying to take the driver’s disgusting hands off of her with all of her force.
I immediately bolted towards the piece of , my blood boiling with rage as I witnessed him wrapping his arms around her small figure.
“SON OF A , WHAT THE ARE YOU TRYING TO DO?!”.
“I-I didn’t do a thing”. He excused himself, removing his claws from the poor girl after seeing me come back with such speed.
I was ready to make the fool spit his own blood, ignoring all of the consequences that would’ve come with that but Dara stepped back as soon as he released his grip on her body and slapped him so hard that the sound reverberated in all of the plaza, leaving a red mark on his cheek.
i should remind myself not to make her angry.
The driver fell on his , his face badly distorted by the pain.
Shocked by the whole situation the coward crawled to his seat, starting the engine of his car and quickly leaving the scene, still holding his cheek in pain.
“GET LOST YOU BASTARD!”. I yelled like a crazy person, in the middle of the road, as the car drove away.
I turned my attention back to Dara, her body trembled as she hugged herself.
how could I leave her alone with that dirty ajhussi?
how could I do that?
I felt sorry for letting her go so easily, for letting her become a prey of the night. Had she been assaulted? Had she been molested?
I wouldn’t had forgiven myself for being so reckless.
Dara dropped to the floor, crying her eyes out. Her sobbing only increased the guilt I felt.
“W-why do I always have to be men’s prey?...” she sniffled, uselessly trying to dry the tears that were cascading down her face.
She probably experienced that kind of harassment quite often. I could see why wolves would prey on such an innocent bunny. The fact she wasn’t great at drinking being another reason why she probably looked so appetizing to those animals.
had I payed attention…
had I been more careful.
i’ll become a lion and protect you.
It’s not my business.
but it’s my fault…
I knelt to the ground to approach her, hesitating in patting her back. I at comforting people.
I couldn’t believe I almost gave her away to a dirty bastard. I couldn’t forgive myself after seeing her break down like that.
“A-are you okay?!”.
She ignored my questions and rubbed her eyes only to get back up, wobbling towards the bus stop.
what is she trying to do?
“Hold up, I’ll call another taxi”.
“D-don’t, oppa”. Her voice was still so croaky for crying so much, both times being my fault.
“W-wait!”. I yelled, following her as she stumbled around.
She tripped on her feet, landing on her .
“I’ll go call another taxi, stay here, ok?”. I signaled her to stay where she was with my hand while I walked the opposite way.
She simply nodded.
I rushed to the main street, hoping that she’d be okay for the few seconds I felt her alone. A taxi approached me as I called one at the end of the sidewalk.
I instructed the cab driver to drive into the inner venue as he stopped his car near me to listen.
I then sprinted back to Dara, who was still sitting in the same spot I left her. I heaved a sigh of relief as she wasn’t kidnapped in that small window of time I didn’t check up on her.
“Come on up, grab my hand”. She extended her arm and grasped my palm, helping herself stand up again.
“What if it happens again?”, she whispered in my ear.
“That won’t happen”.
“H-how can you be so sure?”.
She looked at me with her swollen eyes.
“Because I’ll be right here”.
I kept attentive all the way, I couldn’t let any other accident happen. I was focused on the road, making sure we were going in the right direction when her head dropped on my shoulder suddenly.
I turned to look at her who fell asleep peacefully. I couldn’t wrap my head around how pretty she looked in such a vulnerable state. People usually look their worst when sleeping. The night lights illuminated her small and delicate face.
I spent the entire way trying to stay perfectly still, not to interfere with her nap, no matter how incredibly uncomfortable I felt in that position. That was the least I could do for her after making her experience such a terrible night.
A couple of turns and I saw the arcade on my left; that was the sign we were near her flat.
I looked back at her, it was so hard to bring myself to interrupt her serene slumber.
“…hey…we’re here”, I gently whispered while tapping on her shoulder to help her wake up.
The condo she lived in was a tall building, certainly fit to a celebrity. I lived in a similar structure too.
I fished out the keys out of her bag and opened the gate to the building, she held my arm tightly, trying hard to walk at my speed.
A tall guard stood by the door. He glared at me as he recognized Dara by my side.
The lobby looked like the entrance of a hotel: it wasn’t pretentious or decorated with statues and gold chandeliers, however I could tell each and every piece of furniture was very expensive. how? just trust me.
If I leave her here, she’d be capable to sleep in the hallway.
She barely stood up by herself, i just couldn’t shake the guilt out of my body. I needed to take her to her bed myself. I wasn’t going to leave her alone again.
“32th floor”. She mumbled as we got into the elevator.
She kept resting her head on the wall; I could tell how exhausted she was. It was a miracle she was still standing on her own two feet. Or kind of.
The floor we landed on had a long- beige carpet running all through the hallway. I looked around, not sure If we were in an actual hotel or something.
my condo doesn’t look as nice as this tho.
Dara pointed at the last door on the right. She was so tired she barely opened since we hopped on the taxi.
I opened the door to her flat with the keys still in my hands.
She crawled inside, only to flop onto the floor. Carefully removing my shoes, I entered the apartment too, remembering to lock the door after me.
An herbal smell filled my nose, she probably had an aroma diffuser somewhere in the living room.
maybe I should get one too.
I the lampstand beside her couch and helped her take off her sneakers, they were those kicks GD customized.
they sure are close, without a doubt.
I quietly looked around; somehow the interior of her flat perfectly suited dara’s bubbly personality. There were many cute displays and colorful frames all over the walls.
A cat approached me, it looked more like a miniature tiger.
“You must be… what was your name again?”.
I paused, scratching my head and trying hard to remember her pet’s name.
“Dadoong-i? Was it Dadoong-i?”.
I knelt to the ground to scratch his head as he kept circling my leg, purring and meowing.
“I stole your owner for a couple of hours, aren’t you mad at me?”.
He kept purring, ignoring the conversation I was trying to have with him.
“You don’t understand me, right? It’s okay”. I chuckled by myself.
I knew it was incredibly rude of me to explore her house without her consent, but I couldn’t restrain myself from giving in to the curiosity.
What struck me the most was the presence of multiple frames which contained old photos of 2NE1. I could recognize some of the live performances they were taken at. I remember bumping into them on music show back in the day, when I still used to do the MC.
she probably misses those days.
“S-so hot…”. I heard her whining and turned my attention towards her. She was removing her jacket; the warmth of the alcohol probably giving her a hard time.
“Let me help you”.
I grabbed her jacket and laid it onto the side of her couch.
I looked back at her as she struggled to remove her sweater, the shirt underneath stuck to it revealed her fit belly and chest.
“W-WAIT!”. I stuttered, covering my eyes to give her privacy.
“I’m still here- don’t remove all of your clothes yet!”. I reminded her before she could actually strip.
She crawled towards me and started tugging on the sleeve of my coat. “… p-please bring me clothes”.
“E-eh? How am I supposed to find those?!”.
She slumped back onto the floor, ignoring my questions.
Resigned at my caretaker role I opened various doors in search for her bedroom or closet.
I quietly entered the bedroom and scanned it thoroughly to find her dresser. I couldn’t help but notice the rabbit plushie laid on her bed.
“What was his name again?”.
I remembered from watching a couple 2NE1TV episodes on the tv back in the day, that bunny plushie was Dara’s favorite one.
I started opening every drawer one by one until I stumbled on some cute pink with a cartoon hippo on the front.
“Cute…”, I giggled.
I opened the next one only to find some red lace .
I felt my cheeks become red like tomatoes. I closed shut the drawer and brought my hands to my face to contain my embarrassment.
“W-what am I doing?”. I mumbled.
she’s a grown- woman, it shouldn’t be surprising if she wore stuff like this.
does she wear this on a daily basis or for special occasions?
can it be that she-…?
I removed the coat and hoodie I wore as I felt sweat dribble from my forehead, my body was getting hot at those less than holy thoughts.
what am I thinking?
I resumed my mission and opened the next drawer to find a bunch of t-shirts folded up neatly. I took a random one and immediately rushed back to the living room.
She extended her arm to grab the shirt.
“P-please turn around …".
I quickly faced the wall to give her the privacy to undress. I could hear her fumbling with her hoodie, her bracelets clinking as they touched the ground while she was removing her clothes sitting on the floor.
“Are you okay?”- I slowly turned around, still covering my face with my palms.
With the corner of my eyes I noticed the y line running down her slim back, as she was inserting her head in the large white tee I threw her a couple of seconds before.
I swallowed my saliva and shook my head to remove those thoughts from my head. It wasn’t right for me to have those kinds of thoughts. I was just tipsy. That was all.
“Are you good?”. I faced her again
She started shivering while staring at the slightly open window; the curtain was flowing because of the small breeze that the small gap let in.
I got up and calmly walked towards the window, closing it after checking the view of Seoul’s night that was hidden behind the white curtain.
so that’s what she admires every night before going to sleep…
“I shall go then-“. I hurriedly tried to get to the door.
She tugged on the leg on my pants, signaling to stay.
Taking care of others when they were drunk wasn’t my forte, it was usually the other way around. I was the heavy drinker of the bunch. I refused to take on the role of the sober friend who takes everyone home. It wasn’t my style at all.
what am I going to do?
The guilt for the taxi driver accident motivated me enough to stay and take care of her. I felt like it was all my fault: the sudden date, her getting too drunk, the disgusting pig driver. It was only right to check up on her for a while but part of me wanted to run out of the door as soon as possible.
i’m a wolf too.
this sudden urge to put my claws around you…
aren’t you scared?
can I really take care of you?
Dara kept shivering; her small figure trembled under the dim lampshade light.
I rushed to her room again, keeping my feet light not to disturb her, and grabbed the blanket at the end of her bed, kidnapping the bunny plushie in the process too.
Meanwhile, she climbed on the leather couch, struggling a bit. She curled up as I put the blanket over her. I decided to place the rabbit by her side, which she immediately hugged.
A slight smile appeared on her face as she snuggled up in her new sleeping spot. I sat at the end of the couch, right beside her. I couldn’t help but stare at the sleeping beauty, expecting her to come up with some ugly expression.
It was unreal, she was indeed too pretty to be sleeping so peacefully after drinking so many glasses of soju.
I peeked out of the window, wondering what I was going to do.
Was I supposed to spend the night there to look after her? Did I need to cook some hungover soup? We were barely friends, yet I entered her house. Wasn’t that so inappropriate?
I thought of Suwon, Jaeduck and Jaijin’s faces and immediately wanted to smash them for putting me in such a hard spot. They were the masterminds of that disastrous night.
It suddenly struck me.
"I don’t really like drinking."
She mentioned it that day we ate tteobokki together on our YouTube date. I felt so dumb for remembering that statement a little too late.
she could’ve stopped me tho.
She never once refused a drink I poured her.
can it be?
“Dara-yah, you didn’t have to do that…”.
I moved a rogue strand of hair that was dangling in front of her face out of the way, admiring how incredibly tranquil her expression was.
It looked as if she had no problems in the world.
That’s what I used to think before that night. A bubbly and carefree girl.
Who knew that a couple of drops of soju were able to unlock her worries and unexplored thoughts? In a night I had discovered the same things others found out in a year. She was a reserved person, just like me.
That night she made me hop a rollercoaster of mixed emotions.
what is even this girl?
I thought I had figured her out already.
She was just a talented hoobae, nothing more nothing less. I told myself not to get involved but there I was.
In her flat.
I brought both of my hand to my face, trying to make out the situation I was in.
A deep sigh left my mouth, yet again.
i’m here just because she’s drunk.
what kind of man leaves a poor girl drunk on the streets?
It’s because she’s a girl, not because she’s dara.
of course. that’s why I’m here.
i’m not a heartless bastard.
It could’ve been anyone.
“Stop playing with me!”.
I could not remove her cries and pleading from my head. That’s why I wanted to avoid her in the first place. Not to disappoint her. I blamed those three pricks for trapping me in that situation.
She was begging me not to play with her feelings and yet I was so close to kissing her, even if I my purpose all night was to reject her.
really...what had gotten into me?
maybe i’m a bastard after all.
A ray of light shyly invaded the darkness of the living room, hitting my eyes.
I woke up, startled.
i must’ve passed out on the couch.
I rubbed my eyes, refusing to believe I had spent the entire night at my hoobae’s place.
. what time is it?
I turned to my left; Dara was still sleeping peacefully.
I still had a hard time believing that the same girl who was yelling at me the night before was the same one sleeping so peacefully on the couch.
The hangover was always the worst part of every drinking experience. My head felt a thousand pounds heavier just resting on my shoulder.
bzzzz bzzzzz bzzzzz
The loud buzzing of the doorbell ringed in my head like a tennis balls bouncing in an empty room.
I stood up and dragged my whole body to the entrance.
“DARA-SSI DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY TIMES I’VE CALLED YOU? HOW COME YOU DIDN’T REPLY TO NONE OF MY CALLS-…”.
A man appeared right behind the door, his brows furrowed, creating a multitude of wrinkles on his forehead.
“And who the hell are you?!”. He shouted, expecting someone else to open the door.
I stepped outside and closed the door behind me, not wanting his yells to wake up the hungover girl still sleeping on the couch.
“Why the hell are you yelling at this hour of the day?”. I whined while checking if the hallway was empty, pretty annoyed by his sudden presence.
“I’m her manager. What are you doing in her apartment?!”.
I tilted my head at the man, who kept stomping his feet. Everything sounded muffled, as if a mine had just exploded right beside me. His words came out of my ears without being registered.
“W-what are you talking about all of a sudden?”. I blurted out.
He ignored me and proceeded to quietly opened the door; probably spying on the inside of the flat only to find Dara passed out on the couch.
“What have you done to her?”. He struck me again with a fulminating gaze but all I could do was raise my eyebrow, ignoring his banters.
He got closer to me, probably sniffing my stink of alcohol mixed with Dara’s scent, it was so strong I could smell it too.
“I KNEW IT! YOU DISGUSTING ANIMALS ALWAYS LURE HER LIKE THIS!”.
He grabbed me by the collar of my shirt and slammed me against the door with full force.
“YOU’RE A DISGUSTING ANIMAL, LEAVE HER BE”.
“I BROUGHT HER HERE SAFELY, WHAT NON-SENSE ARE YOU SPOUTING?!”. – I defended myself.
“YOU BROUGHT HER HERE TO SATISFY YOUR DISGUSTING EGO”. The dude clenched his teeth, as the rage inside him boiled up to the limit.
“I BROUGHT HER HERE BECAUSE SHE DIDN’T WANT TO CALL YOU!”.
He slowly released his grip.
His eyes opening wide at the sudden revelation.
A look of disbelief appeared on his face as he stepped back from me.
“That’s right, why are you getting so worked up for?”.
He remained silent, still processing the information I gave him.
“Why do you care about her private life so much, anyway? Just focus on your work”.
I rolled my eyes at him, who felt betrayed by his own confidence.
“Tsk- Stay away from her”.
He shoved me aside, with his hand, making me crash against the wall on the other side.
He didn’t lose a second and quickly got inside the flat, locking me out of it.
this did not just happen.
for ’s sake.
“MY JACKET YOU BASTARD!”.
I smashed my fist onto the door repeatedly, the blood going to my head.
I dropped onto the ground as the door opened and smashed against my nose.
My coat and hoodie were thrown away out of the door.
“NOW GET LOST!”.
His annoying voice came out from behind the door before closing shut again.
p.s. this chapter is so short compared to the other ones because of me being indecisive over the plot. because of uni i’m hella busy but i’ll try to update as much as I can. thank you for being so patient, kind and also interested in my work! It’s not much but it’s fun to create something that can be enjoyable for all of you dara/jiwon stans ~
thanks for tuning in!