something's wrong. xie en feels it in her gut. something is very, definitely, absolutely wrong. it's so wrong, in fact, that even sanghyuk notices.
"saeun?" he actually looks worried for once, even ignoring his breakfast to peer at her from across the dining table. "are you... okay?"
"sure," she says with a quick smile. "hurry up, you're going to be late."
she's not okay, but she's sure as hell not going to tell him that. with a last doubtful look--well, more like a couple of looks--he finishes up. right before the door clicks shut, a terrible feeling wells up in xie en's throat, and she rushes to the bathroom, barely making it before throwing up all of her just-eaten breakfast.
"saeun?" the panic is clear in sanghyuk's voice. "a-are you okay?"
no, she wants to say, but as if the torture wasn't enough, another wave of nausea overtakes her, and she bends over the toilet again, dry-heaving.
"um, i'll--i'll call in and get you to the hospital, okay?"
in the distance, xie en can hear sanghyuk make two phone calls, one to his boss, and one to hers, explaining the situation. by now, she feels okay enough to not hurl all over the floor and swallows with difficulty, dragging herself to the bedroom to get dressed. when she's almost done putting on her pants, sanghyuk enters, face still a mask of worry.
"did you pick up a virus from work?" he asks, nervously holding the car keys in his hand. "it can't be that serious?"
"no, i'm sure i haven't." xie en thinks for a long time, trying to remember if there's been anything out of the ordinary. suddenly, a thought comes to mind and her eyes widen. "my period's late."
sanghyuk's breath hitches. "oh, no," he says weakly, dropping to a squat. "oh no, it can't."
they both know that they're definitely not ready for a baby. they've barely got their own problems figured out, and adding a baby to the mix would only make it worse.
"what if it's true?" sanghyuk asks in the car, breaking a tense silence. "what then?"
xie en doesn't respond immediately. "then..." she huffs. "then we'll talk more about it."
"hmm, nope, you're not pregnant at all!" the nurse hands them a piece of paper. "nothing in the urine test. it's probably either a virus or just an upset stomach. after you go home, take lots of fluids and rest, okay? If it doesn't get better, come back and we'll do more tests."
so it was nothing at all. xie en can't help but feel relieved. sanghyuk, beside her, is the same. "whew," he says as they get back in the car. "i'm glad it wasn't what we thought it was. we're definitely not ready."
xie en laughs in relief. "yeah, i know. i was scared for a second."
words tumble over each other in her mind. she wants to say it--what if it had been real?--but she's scared of the answer. in the end, she only sighs, leaning back against the plush car seat, and closes her eyes.
the next day, xie en wakes up to bloody underpants, and sanghyuk finds a piece missing from the chocolate bar that he'd found stuffed in the back of the freezer. the expiration date? three years ago.