Minjeong was deceitful.
That was one of her characteristics that was infamous among the student body.
Nobody would dare approach her, let alone befriend her because of her foul reputation.
Sure, she was a prodigious student, the one who had been bringing countless honor to Seoul High, but that doesn’t necessarily mean she was not a dangerous person to get involved with because she was.
Aside from some women who only wanted to get in her pants, or flaunt her around like a trophy, she had no one and I doubt she even cared.
So, it was only rational that I assume she was only ing around with her proposal, right? That it was only one of her thousands of underhanded methods to get what she wanted, right?
“How dare you use Ryujin’s name on me,” I snapped, venom lacing my voice. “How low can you get, huh?”
She cocked a brow.
“I’m not using her name on you.”
And she even had the face to deny her obvious agenda...?
“Then what are you doing?”
“I’m giving you a chance, Jimin.” She looked at me dead in the eye. “You only need to date me for a month. Just a month. After that, I promise, I will help you with Ryujin.”
I narrowed my eyes to slits.
“And what makes you think I need your help?”
“Please, it’s pretty obvious you don’t know how to make a move on a girl. If you do, we wouldn’t be talking about this matter right now. Besides, you know I am the only one who can help you.”
I avoided her gaze, cursing under my breath.
She just had to hit the bullseye.
As much as I don’t want to admit it out loud, I don’t know a thing about romance or how it works since all the knowledge that I had went to academics and music.
It’s annoying that she knew her way to get what she wanted.
“Why should I believe you?”
“Between us, you are the one who is going to benefit more from this deal. All I am asking is for you to date me.” She pulled her lips in a sly smirk.
A chill ran down my spine.
Something about it was telling me that I shouldn’t believe any of her words, that this was the devil talking.
I was not sure how, but I could feel that she had the upper hand in this offer. This was Minjeong Kim, after all. She was a person full of trickery. Someone who shouldn’t be trusted.
I would be lying though if I said it didn’t pique my interest.
Let’s humor her for a bit.
“Let’s say, for conversation’s sake, I accepted your offer,” I stared at her face, eyes squinting in scrutiny. “How are you going to help me with Ryujin?”
Suddenly, she moved closer to me, too close for my comfort that I had to step back to avoid the same situation earlier from happening again.
“You know me, Jimin.” She held my stare as if challenging me to scan her eyes for any signs that she was lying; before she mumbled, “I always get what I want no matter what it takes. If I want Ryujin to date you, she will date you.”
I looked down on my feet as I briefly weighed my options.
The safest route was to turn her offer down and go on my day as if this talk never happened and think of other ways to woo Ryujin. That way, I’d never had to trust the devil and avoid the possibility of playing straight into her hands. However, the thought of getting help from her very own sister, who probably had some kind of dark magic to get Ryujin was really, really tempting. Not to mention she’d be also out of my life after the deal.
She thought about this thoroughly and made sure I couldn’t refuse, huh? I guess she wasn’t intelligent for nothing.
“So? What will it be?” she said, impatience evident in her tone.
“Are you sure you are going to hold up your end of the deal?”
“I can guarantee you that I will.”
Somehow, she was slowly convincing me.
The way she was behaving right now seemed to me that she was being truthful.
But I had to make sure...
“You will be out of my life after, right?”
The smile on her face disappeared.
“Of course,” she monotonously answered. “It will be you and my sister by the end of our deal, after all.”
That was the last push that I need.
“Fine.” She was about to flash a victorious grin but refrained herself when I held up a finger to raise a concern. “But we have to keep our involvement with each other a secret. No one has to know about this.”
Her face slowly crumpled disapprovingly.
“Take it or leave it.”
It doesn’t matter to me anymore.
I was confident that I would get the last laugh out of this deal.
If she was thinking I would fall for her, then she was about to make the biggest mistake of her life. I’d been crushing on Ryujin for the longest time and that wasn’t about to change just because I’d date her sister.
This was going to be a win for me regardless of how much I think about it.
Minjeong took in a deep breath before nodding her head in defeat.
I adorned a satisfied smile.
Just you wait, Minjeong Kim. This time, I will beat you in your own game.
Aeri didn’t let me hear the end of it when I returned to our table.
Where did you go?
What took you so long?
What did you do?
had somehow transformed into an automatic rifle with unlimited bullets that if it wasn’t for the warning shush of the surrounding students, I would’ve shoved the book that I was holding down to shut her up.
In the end, she had failed to get even a wink of sleep since the bell signaling the start of our next class had already rung before I could even take a seat, much to her chagrin. Girlie kept on mumbling how bad of a friend was I, thumping her feet on the way back to our classroom.
I could only shake my head wordlessly at her childishness.
For some reason, I found it difficult to pay attention to the lecture our Instructor was discussing in spite of my numerous attempts to hold down my brain that seemed to fly elsewhere in place.
It was frustrating because I always pay attention to class no matter how boring the subject may be in order to maintain my grades and my image. I mean, I do advance reading in my free time yes, a hobby I developed since I was very young, but learning the lessons directly from educators was miles better. So, now that this was happening to me, I could only hope that whatever the Instructor was saying in front was not at all important.
Even during lunch, the only time I would get to see Ryujin, all I did was drown in my thoughts I wasn’t sure if she was even there.
I was meeting the devil later after dismissal.
Yup, the one and only reason for my struggle right now. She said we should talk about the details of our deal to avoid any misunderstandings in the future. Though I was not exactly sure what was there to talk about in the first place, I agreed. I had no other choice anyway.
We would be dating each other for a month. We would be g-girlfriends.... and being girlfriends meant, we would be holding hands.... show affection.... meet each other often.... and oh my god, would we be k-kissing?! A-and uh, well, would we be doing that too?! Oh my god, I think we really need to talk about the details.
Everyone with eyes could see how attractive Minjeong Kim was and if only she wasn’t annoying and a constant reminder of my inability to be at the top, I probably would’ve joined her long line of admirers.
Also, the devil was extremely intelligent and that alone was such a huge turn on.
y brain on top of a pretty face.
Minjeong Kim was really favored by the universe.
Then again, her personality .
You couldn’t really have it all, I guess.
What I was trying to say was, even though she was almost perfect, I still wouldn’t want her to be my first everything.
God, just thinking about it was enough to make me want to vomit.
I was pulled out of my thoughts when my phone vibrated.
Once I made sure that our Instructor wouldn’t catch me doing something against the rules in her class, I hurriedly took out my phone to check who messaged me.
My brows knitted in intrigued upon seeing the name on the screen.
Speaking of the devil.
1 Message: Cruella de Vil
When she asked for my number earlier that I unwillingly gave, saying she needed it since we were basically “girlfriends”, I didn’t know she’d be messaging me this soon.
Cruella de Vil: I have a council meeting until five. Wait for me, okay? <3
What’s with the freaking heart emoji?
Jimin: Where should I wait for you?
Her reply came seconds after I tapped the sent button as if she had been waiting.
Doesn’t she have class?
Or was she ditching again?
Cruella de Vil: You can wait for me inside the council room :p
Jimin: In your dreams. I will wait for you in the library
Cruella de Vil: Hahahaha! Alright, I understand
Council meeting, huh?
Now that I think about it, she was the vice president of the student council. Surprising, considering she was naturally a lazy person who doesn’t like responsibilities. Though, there were rumors going around before that the positions of the current council were merely a façade and that Minjeong was actually the one who was in control of the organization. I mean, it wasn’t really farfetched because, well, she was Minjeong Kim.
I was about to put the phone back in my pocket when it vibrated again.
Cruella de Vil: I love you.
I almost fell off my chair.
Aeri accompanied me to the library. I initially refused since I did not want her to know that I was meeting Minjeong, but she was persistent as hell. And when she’s being persistent, it was impossible to deny her.
Thoughts and prayers for me.
There were a lot of students in the hallway, each had different plans for today. There were those who were going home already, those who probably had club activities to attend to, and those who liked staying in school a little later to do god’s know what.
As for me, well...
If it wasn’t for Minjeong Kim, I would be in the music room right now, practicing the keyboard, or probably talking about music with my co-members.
Good thing our president was a kind person, giving me her approval when I told her I wouldn’t be able to make it due to personal matters without questioning me further.
“Seriously, Yooji.” I gazed upon Aeri who currently had an annoyed expression on her face. “I’ve been talking nonstop here for a while now and you don’t seem to be listening at all.”
“Oh, I’m sorry...”
“What have you been thinking about?” she demanded and when I didn’t answer, she added, “It has something to do with Kim, hasn’t it?”
I really hate her intuition sometimes.
To be honest, I had no plans on letting her in on my deal with Minjeong.
No, it wasn’t because I don’t trust her. I just couldn’t see the need to tell her. It was just for a month, after all. It would be over before I knew it.
“You know you can tell me anything, right?”
Ah, to hell with it.
This is Aeri.
My best friend since I was like five.
The one who was there when my own family was too busy to even spare me any attention.
“I made a deal with Minjeong.”
“Huh?” She looked confused. “What kind of deal?”
I stopped walking to move my face close to her ears and with the lowest voice I could muster, I told her about the deal.
It took a while before Aeri was able to respond as she seemed to take in the information carefully and when she did, it was my turn to be confused.
“Oh, I see,” was her indifferent reply.
What the hell?
Did she even hear me correctly?
“Why aren’t you surprised?”
“I figured it was only a matter of time before Kim made her move. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t aware of this deal you are talking about, but I just know she has been brewing a concrete plan on how to get you. She is Kim Minjeong. What she wants, she gets.”
“I am more surprised that you agreed.”
Trust me Aeri, I was surprised myself.
Never in my wildest dream had I thought that I would make a deal with the devil.
“The deal was really tempting.”
“Well, you are an adult already,” she said, a small smile on her lips. “I trust you know what you are doing.”
I returned the smile.
I busied myself listening to my playlist while waiting for the devil. It’s only thirty minutes past four so I still had half an hour before she arrives.
Actually, I created this not too long ago when I upgraded my Spotify to premium. It was a trend nowadays, I thought, why not do the same?
Music helps me sort out my mind.
It had the ability to calm me down, to ease my inner turmoil.
Music was always there when I needed something in order not to feel alone, or when monsters inside my head were getting too loud for my liking.
As I scrolled through my phone, I tapped a song that was the most played right now.
Stay by the fire
You’re giving looks like you’re telling me I’m faded
It’s cold outside
But spring’s in the corner and I’m waiting
I had my worries regarding the deal.
What if Minjeong was really just ing around and had no plans to help me with Ryujin nor to be out of my life after?
What if this was all just a game to her, to have something to boast that the Jimin Yoo who had sworn to hate her all her life had eventually succumbed to her charms?
On the way to work she saw the flowers blooming up
Telling me how winter for you
What more that I can do?
Minjeong was a mystery to me.
I didn’t really know her as a person aside from what she was showing me and everyone else.
Was it the right decision to trust her?
But we met this year, alas season
That’s why it’s so memorable for me
We’ve worked so hard to where we be
And that’s enough for me right now
I guess there was only one way to find out.
Since I already agreed on the deal, I would have to see the end of it myself. I only need to be there when she asked me out on a date, anyway.
There were numerous instances that I’ve been put in a situation where I had to pretend nice in front of people whom my parents wanted me to get along with. This thing with Minjeong should be as easy as a piece of cake.
“Did you wait long, baby?” a breathy voice mumbled near my ear, sending goosebumps all over my body.
“What the ?” I blurted out in surprise.
“Ooh, bad lips, I see.”
Minjeong plopped herself on the chair across mine wearing her signature smirk on her face. There were beads of sweat covering her forehead and she was slightly panting. It seemed like she ran to get here. The council room was like in another building.
“Don’t call me baby.”
“Why not?” She pouted. “You are my girlfriend now, right?”
I cringed at the label.
I would have to put up with this from now on? Good lord.
“Doesn’t mean you get to call me pet names,” I said, rolling my eyes. “Anyway, let’s get straight to the point.”
“Gee, you are so uptight.”
“No kissing, no s-, understood?” I dropped without warning, which seemed to take her aback.
She wanted me to repeat that?
“I said,” I took in a deep breath, ignoring the heat rising up my face. “No kissing, no .”
She stared at me, amused before she let out a soft laugh.
“You don’t have to worry about that. I will never touch you without your consent.”
Well, I think she was being honest about that.
I mean, if she was lying, she should’ve already taken advantage of our situation earlier, right? But she didn’t.
“Good.” I nodded, satisfied. “How about you? What’s your condition?”
“It’s simple,” she inclined herself forward, dark eyes boring into mine. “I want you to pretend you are in love with me for a month that we will be dating each other. Can you do that, Jimin?”
My eyebrows flew past my hairline.
What did she say...?
“Pretend to be in love with you?” I looked at her in disbelief. Was this girl on crack or something?
“It’s just for a month.” Her voice was soft, almost desperate. “After that, you will be with Ryujin already.”
I briefly stared at her.
What she wanted was a difficult task for me to do.
How could I pretend to be in love with someone I have been hating on all my life? And with her tendency to annoy the hell out of me every time? It was just impossible. What was she thinking?
Okay, Jimin. Do this for Ryujin.
One month was not that long.
There goes that smirk again. The one that told me I had just sold my soul to the devil.
Good luck to me, I guess.