Chapter 5

Love Contract
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It had been three months since Jihyun and Jungkook had started ‘dating’, and the school had seemed to have gotten used to it as no one had spared them glances anymore. Of course, Jihyun sometimes had to deal with envying stares and death glares from some girls, but she knew they meant no harm.

Everything seemed to be going well between the two. They had gotten to know each other better, went on more ‘dates’, or ‘outings’, as they felt weird calling their hangouts ‘dates’ since they weren’t actually dating.

Jungkook had been a good sport, keeping to his terms of the contract. She knew that he wasn’t screwing anyone on the side, because word would have gotten around pretty quickly, and she hadn’t heard of anyone talking about how good Jungkook was in bed yet. That was a good sign.

Whether they were hanging out to keep up the pretense or whether they actually wanted to, Jihyun wasn’t sure, but she didn’t want to question it either. She was happy having a distraction from Taehyung, happy to have someone apart from Jimin she could rant and talk to - Jimin was sweet, but he was busy and a social butterfly, and ultimately a big flirt. The boy went on numerous dates, and Jihyun couldn’t blame him if he had chosen a girl over his best friend once or twice.

She enjoyed Jungkook’s company, and she hoped he enjoyed hers too.

Taehyung had also apologized to her for his actions, but surprisingly, she hadn’t thought of him much at all. Nevertheless, she was also tired of awkward run-ins with him, which lasted for about two weeks after their quarrel before he finally approached her with her favourite cookies as a form of apology. She accepted, of course, who in the world would resist cookies?

Chaeyoung, however, wasn’t too happy about the reunion, but she didn’t bother about the girl. As long as she was out of her sight, Jihyun was just glad that she didn’t have to deal with her bull.

Everything was peaceful, until she met Park Hyorin on the bleachers one day while she was waiting for Jin and Namjoon to be done with soccer.

Jungkook and her had mostly gone home from school together, as her brothers insisted that Jungkook brought her home when they were going on dates - which Jihyun knew was ¾ of the time after school. Jungkook obliged nevertheless, agreeing because he had nothing much to do anyway.

But on the one day he was stuck at the photography club for an after-class activity was the one day that Jihyun had bumped into Park Hyorin.

She hadn’t purposely avoided Hyorin, but she had heard from Jimin that Hyorin sounded livid when she had heard of the news a couple of weeks back. She didn’t pay much attention to it, but she knew she couldn’t avoid it as Park Hyorin was walking towards her with her posse of girls behind her.

Glancing at the field to catch Jin and Namjoon's attention, the two were however occupied with the rolling ball on the soccer field rather than her.

“Well, look who we have here.” Hyorin scoffed as she stood in front of Jihyun.

“If it isn’t Jungkook’s new plaything.” She said as she held onto Jihyun’s chin, while the girl shoved her hands off.

“What do you want?” Jihyun rolled her eyes as she looked at Hyorin. Her thick makeup, perfectly tousled blonde hair over her shoulders as she decked out in her cheerleading uniform made Jihyun feel a tad conscious about herself.

“I’m surprised Jungkook hasn't dumped you yet.” She said as her group snickered behind her. “You know that he’s just using you to spite me, don’t you?”

Jihyun’s face paled and she fell silent. Hyorin was right, Jungkook had made it explicitly clear from the start that he got together with Jihyun for the sole purpose of showing Hyorin he had gotten over her, so why did she feel a pang of sadness gripping her heart when she said that?

In the three months that she had spent with Jungkook, he looked happy, and she knew that there was a small part of her that wanted to disagree with Hyorin, because she wanted those moments she shared with Jungkook to be real.

“T-that’s n-not true.” She said with every ounce of energy she got, willing herself to look strong in front of her when that was far from the case.

“You know that it’s true. Jungkook’s heart will always be with me.” She said with a glare, and Jihyun fell silent again. Unsure of what to say, she merely looked onto the ground as Hyorin continued.

“No one can ever replace my position in Jungkook’s heart, because he will always love me. You know that, don’t you?” she spat smugly, and Jihyun could feel another sinking feeling pooling at her gut as she gulped nervously.

She was about to continue, but then she heard familiar voices calling from behind.

“Ji!” Jin shouted as he rushed over and landed a protective arm over Jihyun’s shoulder while Namjoon stood on her other side.

Hyorin looked taken aback, and reverted back to her coy look immediately.

“Hi Jin, Hi Namjoon.” She smiled sweetly as she tucked her hair behind her ears. Jihyun wanted to puke at how she’d switched so quickly.

Jin’s grip on her shoulder grew tighter, but still gentle enough to not hurt her. “Are you okay?” He whispered while Jihyun nodded, “I’m fine.”

“Stay the  away from my sister, you got that?” Namjoon said with assertiveness, and Jihyun was surprised to hear her brother’s tone. Namjoon was always calm and rarely got angry, but Jihyun knew that there was a hint of anger and protectiveness when he said that.

“I was just trying to let her know her place in Jungkook’s life.” Hyorin shrugged nonchalantly, unfazed by Namjoon’s words.

“You have no right to talk about Jungkook at all.” Jin said angrily as he thought about how the girl had single handedly ruined their youngest. “You disgust all of us.”

Hyorin seemed offended, and merely rolled her eyes before walking off, her posse making way for her as she passed through and left.

“What did she say to you?” Namjoon asked with concern as he smoothed Jihyun’s hair, calming her nerves. “N-nothing.” She muttered, face still flushed with embarrassment at how she had actually thought that Jungkook had gotten over Hyorin.

“Come on, you can tell us.” Namjoon urged gently, and Jihyun gave in. She knew she would never hear the end of it if she didn’t spill.

“She told me that I will never replace her position in Jungkook’s heart.” She said quietly, heart aching at the truth. She wasn’t supposed to feel this lousy about the truth, heck, she wasn’t even to feel anything. So what if she wasn’t able to replace Hyorin in Jungkook’s heart? That wasn’t the whole purpose of getting together with Jungkook at all. She merely got together with him to spite Taehyung.

Then why did her heart ache? She wondered, but she couldn’t come up with a plausible explanation.

“I’m going to get that .” Jin spat angrily as he tried to run after Hyorin, but Jihyun held out an arm to stop him. “It’s fine, Jin. I’m fine.”

“Don’t be affected by her words, Ji. You’re good enough and Jungkook doesn’t love her anymore. He loves you, just believe in that, okay?” Jin said as he patted her head, and in that moment, Jihyun wished that he was right.

“Don’t tell Jungkook about this.” Jihyun said as her brothers looked at her with confused eyes, “But we have to!” They retorted while she shook her head.

“No, don’t tell him. It’s for the best.” She urged, sighing as she walked away.

--

“You’re coming to the dance competition this weekend, right?” Jimin asked as Jihyun was still wrapped in her thoughts. “Earth to Ji?” He nudged as she snapped back to reality.

“Can I not?” She pulled a face and Jimin shook his fingers sassily. “No way. Hoseok, Jungkook and I ar

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