It’s been a week since the two had last seen each other, and Seulgi would've been counting down to when she could see Irene next if she wasn’t so busy with her comeback. She won't admit it out loud in fear of her being made fun of by her obnoxious friends, but she liked spending time with the Red Velvet member. They’ve gotten closer after the trip, and Seulgi found herself thinking about places she wanted to take the other girl and the different things she wanted to do with her.
These thoughts came and left quickly as she barely had enough free time to sleep. She didn’t have any time to think about anything else other than her comeback, her company making sure of that as her schedule was full of back to back practices and variety show appearances.
Seulgi was exhausted.
The iced coffee in her hand wasn't doing a good job of keeping her awake, as she fights to keep her eyes open. She thinks about taking a nap but quickly dismisses the idea. It was only about a few minutes away from the broadcasting building.
Instead, she pulls out her phone and monitors the video of her dance practice from last night. She makes mental notes of things she wanted to change and improve before shutting off her phone.
Seulgi lets her eyes go out of focus and relaxes into her seat. She wonders if Irene was already at the building and recalls the last conversation she had with her the week prior.
It’s the morning after their overnight trip, and Irene and Seulgi have all their belongings packed as they prepare to say goodbye to the old couple that owns the cottage. They find the old couple waiting to see them off outside the house.
The old man sees them exit the house first, “If it isn’t the adorable newlyweds,” he jested, earning an elbow in the stomach from his own wife.
“Haven’t you made fun of these precious girls enough?” The old lady glared at her husband, earning her a minuscule pout from said man. She turns to Irene and Seulgi, “It’s been a pleasure for me and my husband to meet you both, I hope you two treat each other well, and to please visit once in a while,” she winked.
Seulgi scratched her nape, “Thank you so much for letting us stay here.”
“We really enjoyed our stay,” Irene added.
The older couple smiled and wished the two a safe trip home before returning to their house, leaving Irene and Seulgi alone.
“It was really nice to be able to relax,” Irene breaks the silence.
Seulgi nods agreeing with her, “I’m going to miss having a full night’s rest,” she groans, predicting the sleepless nights in store for her in the near future.
Irene just smiles, sympathizing with her, it has been a very stressful month for her and her members with their comeback and individual schedules. “Will you be promoting your new song on the music shows?” she asks.
Seulgi nods, rubbing her temples, “I start promotions for my album in a few days,” she brings her index finger up to her lips, “please don’t leak this sensitive information to the public.”
Irene rolls her eyes, chuckling, “Since you asked nicely I won’t tell anyone.”
Seulgi laughs, “I’m glad I could trust you.”
The show staff had been busy all morning with packing all their equipment into their vans, the producers could only briefly express their contentment from how successful the shoot went. Irene and Seulgi thank the staff and bid their goodbyes as they walk through the business of the crew loading the various things and equipment onto the van. They made their way to their respective rides where their managers were waiting for them.
They linger next to their vans for a minute that feels like hours before Irene speaks, “Will you be promoting on music shows?”
Seulgi nods once, “I have a comeback showcase the day the song drops,” she pauses for a second to think, “I think I start promoting on music shows as early as next week.”
Irene brightens, “It looks like we’ll be seeing each other soon.”
“That means I get to meet Red Velvet,” a dopey smile worked its way onto her face.
“Don’t look too excited,” she glares at her jokingly.
Irene’s manager calls out to her from the van, signaling that it’s time to go. The two exchange their goodbyes before climbing into their rides. Irene rests her head on the window and watches Seulgi’s van pull out of the driveway and drive off first.
Seulgi’s head jerks and snaps against the headrest of her seat after a particularly abrupt stop and was forcefully brought back to reality. She looks outside the car window and sees that they’re still on their way to the broadcasting station. A yawn escapes and leans her head back, mentally scolding herself for staying up too late last night.
The only thing keeping her awake was—not the coffee—but the excitement of seeing Irene. Normally whenever she’s promoting on music shows, her schedules rarely overlap with anyone she personally knows, so having a familiar face was a nice change.
Once they finally get to the building, Seulgi gets out of the van and makes her way up to her dressing room. The room is filled with bustle as her stylist and makeup team scramble to get her stage outfit ready on one side of the room and her choreographer and backup dancers run through the performance on the other side of the room.
She closes the door behind her and waves at the dancers from across the room. Her stylist looks up from the task she was doing and greets the singer, “Seulgi-yah, good morning.”
“Hey, Unnie, sorry I'm a little late,” Seulgi says as she sits down.
The stylist chuckles, “It’s fine Seulgi-yah we’re still getting everything settled here,” she sets down the things in her arms, “and you still have your rehearsal.”
Seulgi nods and checks the time, “Manager-oppa was so stressed when he picked me up I thought I was running late.”
“He’s always stressed, that one.”
Seulgi chuckles, “Last week was the first time in a while I’ve seen him look so at peace,” she sips her drink before continuing, “He kept staring at Irene-unnie, it was so funny.”
Her stylist smirks, “Are you jealous, Seulgi-yah?”
Seulgi quickly denies this, "Of course not." She crosses her and pouts.
“Our little Seulgi has already found someone,” she pretends to wipe a fake tear, “It feels like it was only yesterday I was watching you debut, now look at you,” she gestures to the younger girl, “You’re married to Red Velvet’s Irene.”
“Unnie,” Seulgi whines and stomps her feet, earning a few chuckles from a few staff nearby who were watching the exchange.
Suddenly the door of the dressing room opens and her manager comes in, “Seulgi-yah, there’s someone outside for you.”
“Who?” Seulgi asks as she gets up from her chair. She doesn’t hear what he said, but she has a feeling she knows who it is.
Only one person came to mind.
She leaves the room with an expectant look. The bright smile that was on her face quickly dissipated when she sees who it is.
“Seulgi-yah!” Her visitor shouts excitedly.
The singer tries to not look too disappointed but fails miserably.
“Yah, don’t look so bummed out, people might think you hate me,” her visitor mumbled.
Seulgi grinned sheepishly, “Sorry, Byul-unnie I thought you were someone else.”
Moonbyul raised an eyebrow, "Who else would you be expecting?" she asked confused at her friend's reaction before putting everything together, then her expression quickly turned playful, “I didn’t know marriage changed you this much.”
Seulgi groaned, “I feel like I’ve been hearing that all morning.”
“You looked so excited when you came out of the room,” Moonbyul smirked, “Now I know who you were so excited to see.”
Seulgi rolls her eyes, wanting nothing more than for the ground to swallow her up right then and there.
“I’m sorry I’m not Irene, but you're stuck with me,” Moonbyul pats the younger girl’s shoulder before pushing past her, entering the room.
Seulgi scoffs, following after her friend she closes the door behind her.
Moonbyul sits down on the nearest chair and makes herself comfortable.
The younger girl takes a seat next to her and stares at her but says nothing.
Moonbyul smirks, “You want to ask why I’m here right now, right?”
Seulgi just gives her a look.
“I just wanted to come and show my support to my precious dongsaeng.”
Moonbyul rolls her eyes, “This is the thanks I get for taking time out of my day to come and surprise you.”
“I called you yesterday, asking you nicely to come to visit me and you said you were going to be busy with Yongsun-unnie,” Seulgi scoffs.
“You told me I had to buy food for all of the staff members or I can’t come inside!”
Seulgi pursed her lips and looked away, “I don’t recall ever saying that.”
The staff remain unfazed by the two girls and were all used to their dynamic at this point.
“Do you have a schedule here, unnie?
Moonbyul shook her head, “I came with Yongsun, she made me drive her here.”
“So you didn’t come here for me after all,” Seulgi pouts.
“In my defense, Yongsun told me we’d be busy today,” she scratches her head, “Little did I know she’d just make me her driver for the day.”
“Where is she right now?”
“She went to go visit Red Velvet,” Moonbyul answers, absentmindedly scrolling through her phone.
Seulgi’s head snapped in the older girl’s direction. Her eyes are wide as she stares at Moonbyul, who was still busy looking at her phone, and waits for her to continue.
Moonbyul loved giving Seulgi a hard time, so she ignored the piercing glare the singer was shooting at her and continued to feign ignorance.
Seulgi loses her patience and kicks her friend’s shin.
“Ow!” Moonbyul glares at Seulgi, “What was that for?”
“Please,” Seulgi crosses her legs, “That was barely a tap, you big baby.”
Moonbyul stands up and starts walking towards the door, “Maybe I’ll just go to Red Velvet’s dressing room where Yongsun is at, I know she’ll appreciate my presence,” she says with an emphasis on Red Velvet and leaves the room.
Not even a second later, the door opens and Moonbyul’s head pops back into the room, “Are you coming or not?”
Seulgi quickly and wordlessly stands and speed walks to the door, but before the two friends could leave, Seulgi’s manager utters out, “Please be back in time for your rehearsal,” to which Seulgi responded with a thumbs up.
Moonbyul stops in front of an elevator and presses the button.
Seulgi catches up to the older girl, “Why do you walk so fast?” she whines.
“You just have short legs,” The elevator dings, and Moonbyul rushes in and spams the elevator button, trying to close the doors before Seulgi could get inside.
Seulgi scoffs and sticks her hand out before the elevator doors could close and steps in, “Are you a child?”
Moonbyul chuckles and presses the button for the lobby and Seulgi sends her a confused look. “Have patience Seulgi-yah we’re still going to see Irene, we just need to pick up something downstairs.”
Seulgi opens to reply, but the elevator’s doors open and Moonbyul walks out quickly to avoid answering any questions.
Moonbyul’s phone rings and she answers it as she walks towards the doors leading outside of the building. Seulgi wasn’t close enough to hear what she was saying, but she wasn’t all that curious to find out either. She lingers in front of the door and watches Moonbyul walk up to a parked van and knock on the driver’s side window.
Moonbyul turns to her and signals her to come to them. Seulgi jogs over and Moonbyul reaches inside the car to grab something. She hands the large plastic bag over to Seulgi to hold onto and reaches inside for another bag.
Seulgi opens the bag to look through the contents, “Are these for the Red Velvet members?”
Moonbyul nods, “And before you complain about me not getting you any, I already called your manager to come down to get the food for your staff.”
Seulgi throws her free arm around Moonbyul’s shoulder and she’s careful to not move the bag in her other hand too much so it doesn’t spill. “Have I mentioned how much I respect and appreciate you?”
Moonbyul laughs, “I will be accepting dinner on you as thanks.”
Seulgi chuckles and just nods as they both make their way to the dressing room, where the girl group and Yongsun are currently interrogating Irene.
“Unnie just answer the question!” Yeri whines.
Irene groans and tries her best to ignore their intense stares, but Joy and Yeri kept tugging her shirt, it became impossible to. Irene swats the younger girls’ hands away, ”I don’t understand why you all want to know so badly.”
Wendy and Yongsun make eye contact with each other and giggle, both knowing that Joy and Yeri were not going to stop bothering Irene until she gives them an answer.
Irene huffs and sends a look in Wendy and Yongsun’s direction, but the pair seemed to be immersed in a video on Yongsun’s phone to see the desperate looks Irene was sending them. She lets out a deep sigh, accepting the fact that the two were probably not going to help her deal with Joy and Yeri.
“I do not have her number,” Irene answers, but they didn’t look too satisfied with her answer.
Joy says nothing but judging by her facial expression Irene could tell the taller girl wanted to say something while Yeri, with furrowed brows grips onto her shoulder and aggressively shakes her. “What do you mean you don’t have her number?”
“I don’t know why this is such an issue, we’ve only met up to film twice.”
“Unnie do you want me to teach you how to get someone’s number?” Yeri wiggles her eyebrows, “I’m really good at it, look!” She proudly shoves her phone in front of Irene’s face to show how many contacts she has collected. Irene scrunches her nose moves the younger’s back down.
”Unnie, just confess that you were too scared to ask for her number,” Joy teases.
Yeri chuckles and adds, “If you don’t want to ask her, maybe I’ll ask for it and keep to myself”
“Is this any way to treat your elder,” She sulks but eventually laughs along.
Yongsun stood abruptly, earning her looks of confusion from the Red Velvet members, “Byul said she needed help with something, I’ll be right back,” She explains.
She leaves the room and turns her head to look for her girlfriend, and quickly spots her with Seulgi walking towards the room, both carrying bags of food. “Seulgi-yah aren’t you performing later?”
Seulgi nods, “Byul-unnie came to visit but ended up dragging me here.”
Yongsun raises an eyebrow at Moonbyul, who was staring at Seulgi in disbelief, “You came with me willingly,” Moonbyul takes a step closer to Yongsun and pretends to whisper in her ear, “Yong I think Seulgi’s too shy to admit she came here to see a certain someone.”
Seulgi thinks that Moonbyul is lucky that her hands were full at the moment.
“Let’s go inside,” Yongsun stops in front of the door and turns her head back to the two, “or were you guys planning on surprising us?” Yongsun asks, raising her eyebrow when she’s met with silence.
“Oh, God. I haven’t thought this through,” Seulgi visibly pales, “What if Irene doesn’t want to see me outside of the show or if her members don’t want me in their dressing room or-” Her nervous rambling was cut off by Yongsun opening the door and Moonbyul shoving her in the room.
The chatter in the room stopped their attention now on the new visitor in the room. Seulgi felt her cheeks warm and turned her head to glare at the couple behind her. She decides she could deal with getting her payback later and greet the Red Velvet members and everyone else in the room first.
“Hello, I came to help Moonbyul-unnie deliver food.”
Moonbyul chuckles, “Why don’t you go and meet your sisters-in-law, I could give the staff the food,” She walks towards the far side of the dressing room without looking back.
“Wait let me help you-” Once again Seulgi was cut off by Yongsun snatching the bags from one of her hands.
“You can go ahead and give the girls their food, thanks Seulgi!” Yongsun winks before following Moonbyul.
Seulgi is rooted to her spot, glaring at her friend’s back before stiffly turning to where the four girl group members were sat, and finally walks slowly towards them.
Irene can see Joy and Yeri’s grins from the corner of her eye and hope the two wouldn’t say anything to embarrass her.
“Hello, It’s nice to finally meet you all,” Seulgi smiles, her eyes disappearing into crescents, “Moonbyul-unnie bought you guys lunch,” she lifted the plastic bag in her hand to show them.
Wendy reacts first and stands to accept the food, “It’s nice to meet you too Seulgi-ssi,” She gestures to her younger members, “Yeri and Joy kept bugging Irene-unnie to introduce you to them.”
Yeri nods enthusiastically, “Irene-unnie has told us so much about you, Seulgi-unnie!”
Seulgi brightens at that and shares eye contact with Irene. The two were busy staring at each other to notice that the three group members were also sending each other looks.
Yeri subtly tilts her head in the direction of the couple as if to say, “Look at them,” and silently giggles.
Joy smirks before clearing , “Seulgi-unnie please sit and make yourself comfortable,” she moves over, making the space next to Irene free, and pats the newly unoccupied seat.
Seulgi sat stiffly as Wendy arranged the food on the table. Irene glances at her pretend wife and tries to make her feel less awkward, “Congratulations on your album,” she smiles kindly.
“All of your songs on the album were so good!” Wendy adds, giving Seulgi a thumbs up.
“Unnie, come be a guest on my show!” Yeri says excitedly, “You can promote your album there.”
Seulgi laughs, “That sounds like fun.”
Yeri claps excitedly, “I’m taking that as a yes, you can’t take it back now.”
“I’ll have to talk to my manager and have my schedule figured out, but that sounds like a plan,” Seulgi says, smiling brightly.
Irene grins, leave it to Yeri to befriend Seulgi in such a short amount of time. The initial awkwardness was now gone, and her members and Seulgi were getting along nicely.
Yongsun and Moonbyul eventually get back to the group after making sure the staff members got something to eat. The girls thank the couple for the food and began to eat. Wendy notices Seulgi not eating and offers her a plate, “Feel free to grab some food there’s plenty for everyone.”
Seulgi politely declines, “It’s okay Wendy I’ll have to leave for rehearsal soon anyway,” she checks her phone and sees a dozen messages from her manager reminding her to not be late for it.
Joy pouts, “But Seulgi-unnie, you just got here.” Wendy and Yeri also pout, agreeing with Joy. Irene chuckles at her members, finding it cute how attached they were to Seulgi already.
“This isn’t going to be the last time we see Seulgi,” Irene reassures them, she swore she could see a tear forming in Yeri’s eyes.
Seulgi laughs loudly, “I’ll try to come by later again if I have some free time.” She checks the time again and decides to start heading back to her dressing room. She says goodbye to her new friends and was about to say goodbye to Irene, but before she could, Joy tells Irene to accompany her out of the room. “We don’t want Seulgi-unnie getting lost and potentially being late to her rehearsal.”
Irene walks out of the room with Seulgi and the couple walk slowly towards the direction of the elevator.
“It’s nice that we had the chance to hang out outside of the show,” Seulgi says with a gentle smile on her face.
Irene nods, also smiling, “My members were serious when they said to come back when you’re all done with rehearsal.”
They reach the elevator and it immediately opens, but Seulgi doesn’t make a move to go inside. Irene looks at Seulgi confused, a woman in the elevator is holding the door open waiting for them to get in.
“I’ll take the next one,” Seulgi smiles politely at the woman in the elevator. She takes a deep breath before asking Irene, “Would it be okay for me to get your number?” Seulgi, who was too embarrassed to look at Irene, kept her eyes fixed on the doors of the elevator as she took her phone out of her pocket.
“I left my phone back in the room.”
Seulgi blushes, she feels her face getting hot, “Oh, well that’s okay!” The elevator dings and opens as if to save her from feeling further embarrassment, but before she could sprint inside, Irene takes her phone from her hand and quickly puts in her number.
“Do well in rehearsal, I’ll see you later,” Irene smiles brightly and waves goodbye before walking back to her dressing room.
Everything went by so quickly Seulgi still hasn’t realized what had just happened. The loud ding of the elevator snaps her out of her daze. She walks out once the doors open only to walk right back in when she finds that she was on the wrong floor. Seulgi facepalms, but nothing could get rid of the smile she has on her face.
Seulgi couldn’t stop staring at her phone the whole way back to her dressing room.
a/n: Happy Holidays everyone! Hopefully, everyone ate good food and had a great time this holiday season despite this pandemic. I hope you guys stay safe and healthy.