the price of the new gym membership you purchased isn't a joke. and giving it up for the sake of avoiding seulgi is a kick in the shin.
and it doesn't help that you see her thrice a week in your class. although seulgi doesn't do anything, you can still feel how her eyes follow you throughout your discussion.
you were close to cancelling your gym membership until you found out she doesn't visit the gym as often as you do.
no. you weren't stalking her.
yeri happens to like this eric guy you've met once in the gym and resorts to checking the logbook entry to get an idea of his schedule.
of course, your eyes didn't miss the "kang seulgi" names on the list and found out she follows a routine.
boy, you are so lucky.
and because of that, you push through with your plans of removing her from your life outside university.
you stopped going to the bar with your friends. you changed your gym schedule to avoid her, even if it means hitting the gym alone since yeri's happy going on a different time to match it with her crush.
and it worked because you haven't come across seulgi's shadow.
you were happy. your plan worked. the only thing left to do now is to stop thinking about her.
"hm. i see you've been trying to avoid me, professor."
you almost jump from where you're standing when you hear her voice from behind. you just finished showering and is preparing your things before bouncing off.
"is that how bad you want to get rid of me?" she asks when you turn around. she's wearing a black tank top and shorts, a duffel bag hanging on her shoulder. "i'm hurt."
you clear your throat and turn to your locker to hide your blushing face.
"i'm surprised you found out my new schedule, miss kang."
"well, the logbook is for everyone to see."
"guess i'll have to change my schedule again."
"wow. so, you really are avoiding me, huh? i'm honoured, professor bae."
"what's your problem?" you ask, turning to her.
she looks away with a smile and turns back to you. "my problem is this; you trying to play chase with me."
"try not messing with me, and maybe i'll stop avoiding you," you say. "you're a digital marketing and communications major, right? you should be able to analyse the data and tell if your target audience is interested in buying your product or not. you should know by now that i don't want anything to do with you."
she chuckles. "i'm sorry. it seems we have a different interpretation of the data you're sending me, professor."
she steps a little closer and presses a palm on the side of your locker.
you hold your breath for a second.
"your action speaks louder than your words, miss bae." she leans into your ear, your nostrils capturing her scent. "and they are telling me you want me to you too."
she almost stumbles down the bench when you push her way too hard.
"what's wrong with you!" you ask, furious.
she seems taken aback for a moment.
"i don't want any of this, okay?" you say. "i have a boyfriend, and i love him. i don't like you. i don't feel anything towards you. i am not thinking of you. i just want to--"
"kiss me?" she says, and you're wondering how she can still say it so calmly and comforting.
you scoff. "you're just so full of yourself, aren't you?"
"i know what you're going through." she takes a step towards you. "you wouldn't go that far of trying to avoid me if you don't like me. there must be something in there, isn't it?"
you swallow a lump in your throat, couldn't think of a comeback for that.
"it's okay to feel like that, professor. humans, particularly women, are private creatures when it comes to lust."
you're not sure when it happened, but she's cupping your cheek now.
"but you have to remember you don't need to pretend when you're with me," she says, and you feel yourself giving into her touch. "i know you want it, and you're fighting it hard. let it out and be free. no one would ever know."
you bite your lower lip.
"kiss me." she leans forward. "kiss me and be free of that emotion."
your eyes search the area, worried if someone will catch you two in that position: she pinning you against the locker.
she pulls back and smiles. she grabs your hand and drags you to the secluded area where you saw her making out with a woman weeks ago.
and you're not sure why you lost the urge to stop her.
"don't worry, this is a blind spot." she gently presses you against the wall, a hand supporting the back of your head.
your heart is pounding hard in your chest, but you like how she treats you with gentleness.
"just one kiss, irene," she whispers, and her face is so close you could feel her breath on your lips. "no commitments. just one kiss, and you'll be free."
there's something in her words that always hit homerun: freedom.
you don't know if it's just a line she uses every time to hit with women.
of course, you know it is a line, but you don't care because it works for you.
and you've already reached the last straw of this hide and seek game you've been playing with her.
you'll put an end to that today.
maybe seulgi's right. maybe giving into this once will stop your brain from thinking about her.
maybe giving into this will finally provide you with the closure you need.
besides, it's just a kiss. and you're sure it won't happen again after this.
with a goal to put an end to your perplexity, you initiate the kiss yourself and meet her lips halfway.
your lips were shaking at first, but she takes control and returns your kisses with a swift gradation of intensity, making you cling to her.
you know this isn't right, but she feels soft against your mouth, and you find yourself tiptoeing a bit to get a full experience.
her kiss is hypnotic beyond reason.
she drapes her arms around your frame, and you feel the heat rising from your stomach to your chest.
you didn't know how long you've kissed, but you two had to pull apart when there's a sudden guffaw from a group of females entering the locker room.
"relax. they won't see us here," she says, planting soft kisses on your face and mouth.
you're still worried about other people seeing you, but you find yourself getting weak and returning her kisses.
she gives you one last lingering kiss and bites your lower lip before she parts.
and you can't believe you want to pull her back.
it's good you were able to control yourself.
she hands over a clean handkerchief. you wonder what it is for.
she smiles and wipes her swollen lips with the back of her hand.
you blush when you realise it was you who did that to her. you take the handkerchief and wipes your mouth with it.
she gives one last smile and pats your head before turning around and walking away, leaving her orange handkerchief in your hands.
"take care on your way home, irene."