The photoshoot takes several hours and it gives Soobin plenty of opportunities to text back and forth with Hyeonju, sending her the occasional sneaky picture from the shoot and selca with hearts. Her classes have finished for the day and she is already at home as Soobin lays back on the long couch at BigHit waiting for the others to be finished with their individual shots. He switches between playing a game and texting her.
Binnie: 'There's another party Friday. Will you be there?'
He smiles to himself thinking about seeing her again.
Hyeonju: 'if u want me 2'
Binnie: 'I want 2 CU now'
He blushes, feeling a rush of nerves as he admits this to her.
His eyes pop open wide and he sits up, looking around. No one is in the space, and the others might take another hour to finish. He bites his lip and presses her contact info in WhatsApp.
It takes a moment for her to answer and when the camera opens, he can see her moving quickly to shut her bedroom door, and sit down on her bed. She smiles back at him, as she speaks in a very quiet voice.
"Hello you," she says, looking a little embarrassed.
"I hope it's ok to call in WhatsApp, I'm sorry I didn't ask."
"It should be OK for a little while." She seems to look around her and then look back at her own screen, as if trying to identify what he can see.
"You look really cute today," he says, blushing at paying her the compliment. He's never said those words to a girl before, even when he thought it was true he never had the courage to say it out loud.
"Thank you, I just have on what I wore to school. I've only just got home."
"Is your family home?" he asks and she bites her lip, dropping her eyes. She doesn't seem to know how to answer the question and it makes him wonder again about her home life and if she's really OK.
"No, I - they're not," she says, but she doesn't look back at him and he isn't sure she's being truthful.
"Are you OK there?" he asks, worried. She looks at the screen and tries to smile.
"I'm fine, don't worry about me. Tell me how your shoot went," she changes the subject and he recognizes it, but he let's it go, for now.
"It was fine. I showed you the image of the outfit I had on. The others had similar colors. I liked the long jackets but they really make me look taller," he tells her. She smiles back at him and then he hears a noise as a door is opened.
"What are you-" He hears a woman's voice say and she sits up quickly, the call disconnects. He sits up staring a the screen confused. He isn't sure what just happened but it seemed like she was in a panic to hang up. He wonders who came in. He sends a text:
No response. He thinks about it for a moment, and decides it might have been her mother, and maybe she wasn't suppose to be on her phone. If that's the case, he shouldn't text her again, not right away. He puts his phone aside to prevent himself from staring at it and he hopes she will reach out to him later.
Taehyun and Beomgyu walk back into the room and sit beside him on the couch.
"We have another hour to kill, want to go back into the game?" Taehyun asks. Soobin nods and pulls out his phone, quickly closing her text, remembering to delete it, and navigating to the game.
Later that night, when he still hasn't heard from her, he sends another text.
Binnie: ' let me know you're OK'
No response. The message is left unread for the next several hours. He checks repeatedly, but there's no change. He wonders where she is, and why she hasn't even opened her messages. It's probably a bad idea to call. Maybe she's in trouble and her parents took her phone. A lot of thoughts run through his head as he tries to think about what she could be doing. Some of the thoughts running through his mind are disturbing. She hasn't said much about her home life, but she did indicate she had a lot of pressure to help the family. He wonders if they know what she's doing to help them, what she's forced to do just to take care of them. Part of him wonders if they know and they don't care. It makes him angry.
He can't sleep, wondering what's happened to Hyeonju. He can't wait until Friday to see her or even hear from her. He wants to know that she's alright at least. He hears a tapping at his door and looks up to see Yeonjun. He steps inside closing the door.
"Hi, not asleep yet?" he asks as he comes closer to the bed. Soobin shakes his head and then lays back, staring up at the ceiling. "I wanted to ask if everything is OK?"
"I'm not sure," he answers quickly.
"Did something happen?" Yeonjun sits down next to him.
"I don't know. The call just went dead." Yeonjun looks at him strangely.
"What are you talking about?" Soobin realizes he's misunderstood. He sits up quickly, scrambling to think of something to say. "Are you talking to that girl?" Soobin looks down, trying not to lie to Yeonjun, but unsure how to tell the truth.
"What were you asking about?"
"I was checking on you because you have been really distant all day, like something is weighing on your mind, but now I see that it's her," he says shaking his head. "This is exactly why they tell you not to get involved. It's why there are rules and contracts," he explains. Soobin shakes his head.
"That's not it. Everything was fine. We were talking a lot today, and it was great. I called her in WhatsApp, but then someone came in to her room and the call ended and she seemed, well, panicked. And now she isn't responding. I think she might be in trouble."
"I don't think you should be talking to her, in WhatsApp, on the phone or even in text."
"Well I am, and I'm going to see her again. If everything is OK," he says looking down. Yeonjun sighs. He realizes he can't convince him not to see this girl. Maybe all he can do is try to protect him, to be sure he doesn't get into trouble. He puts his hand on Soobin's shoulder, and smiles at him.
"I'm sure it's OK. She's probably just busy," he says the words, only half believing them. He stands up to leave, and Soobin calls to him.
"Hyung, I need to know that she's OK. That's all I want. Would you call her phone for me, from your number. She might be able to answer if she thinks it isn't me."