Epilogue: Salamat, Mahal

The One I Once Loved
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Six months later.


The familiar chime of her phone startled her as she's trying to process files for her job at Choijung's having gone back there after the healing trip in Elyu and some more weeks of self healing. 


Kinuha agad niya ang phone niya, and even if there is no name she immediately knew who it was from. 


Unknown Number: It's me. 

                                  Can we meet?


Another promise broken. 


Akala ko ba huling pagkikita na natin that day? 


But she doesn't mind it as she types a quick reply of a single okay, and it takes a long while before she receives another text. 


Unknown Number: great

                                  sa usual place, will wait for you there :) 


Legit, one last time. 


One last time to finally seal things and turn the page, Irene thinks. 


She'll have to do that anyways, so what better occasion to do that than right now? 


Sweet Cravings. 


A place haunted by memories, but only the good kind; and yet the good becomes bad whenever she remembers the things that had happened in the past few months, staining the good with the bad she wishes to forget. 


Her fingers shake as she grasps the handles of the door, pushing it forward and taking one step at a time, nervousness flashing through her system as she feels nostalgia and pain hit her both at once. 


"Irene," pagtawag ni Byul from the counter, and Irene finds a smile in her to give, however small and faint. 


"Nandun siya sa dulo, sa usual spot niyo." the owner says, and Irene catches a glimpse of the girl's co-owner peeking from the kitchen, staring at her and following her every move, pero hindi niya na inalintana iyon. 


"Thank you, Byul." 


("Mag-usap na ulit?" Yongsun asks, because it has been six long months after the incident in Elyu and both had never been better. 


"Yeah," Byul says, a sadness gripping her heart from the scene before her. 


"Sayang," is all that Yongsun could say.) 


Irene walks into the familiar surroundings, filled with memories she does not wish to forget but brings pain to her nonetheless. She takes a quick scan of the premises and finds the one she's been looking for, two cups upon the table. 


One for her, like always. 


Kilala mo pa pala ako. 


"Seulgi," she calls out, and this time there is no anger with it. 


Nothing else comes to her heart when she calls that familiar name, and there she knows that everything's changed. 


"Irene," pagsagot nito, that same smile with the likeness of such a cute little bear and her eyes that disappear into crescent moons appear before her, but now Irene does not wish for it to be hers. 


She's outgrown the urges and the habits, and all she's here for is one last talk before they part ways. 


She knows na it's not for good because fate has a weird way of always intersecting their paths, but she hopes that it would be a long while before they meet again. 


Instead, she sits down in front of her, hurriedly taking a sip of the unknown liquid poured upon the cup in front of her—iced tea, she realizes—and she does not even bat an eye to the person who's watching her every move again. 


This is closure, Irene thinks to herself, As well as a test for me to figure out if I'd already healed myself well enough. 


Siguro naman, hindi ba? 


Cause the answers were already there. 


Seulgi gave it to her months ago in La Union, a place she could never step foot in again without remembering the anger that had taken over her system, but Seulgi answered her questions right there. 


So one last question remains. 


Why did she call her to go here? 


"I'll just keep it short, baka busy ka." Seulgi says, and Irene nods at that as she leans back, waiting for what this girl had to say. 


"I'm going to the States this week," she says, the news sending shock to her system, pero it's the good kind, because all Irene could think about is good for her. 


"Nauna na sila Wendy and… and Sunmi, but I stayed behind so I can finish up things here." Seulgi said with a smile, and Irene nodded at that, taking another sip. 


Finish up things, including her. 


She's the only loose end in the chapter now. 


Irene likes to think that Seulgi left her for last to fix, and it took a longer time than a week for her to gain courage this time; six months, and Irene is proud that she never thought of this girl once. 


She's no longer staring at each door, nor trying to find a piece of that girl in everything she sees. 


A new start in life, indeed. 


"That's good, Seul. I figure Joy did not take kindly of you two leaving?" she asks, and Seulgi laughs at that. 


"Almost wanted to postpone her and Hyo-seob's wedding, gusto niya daw sumama para powerpuff girls nga daw kami dun."


"Eh kamusta naman si Wendy?" 


"Edi ayun, feel ko pinagpray niya talaga itong pag-overseas namin, siguro to run away from Joy? Sayang nga eh, kahit na nagkachance sila to be together, hindi sila nagtagal—" 


"Parang tayo?" 


The joking manner breaks, and Irene finds Seulgi's lips turning down into a frown, but she could effortlessly bring it back with two words: "Joke lang." 


"Irene naman eh…" Seulgi says, Irene laughing as she finally finished the cup, and Seulgi immediately takes it to refill another. 


Slowly, after the years, it is Irene's turn to stare. 


Watching the former love of her life walking away, and somehow there is none of that anger and longing left. 


Yun lang naman ang gusto niya eh. 


Masagot lahat ng mga tanong. 


Even if it took away the person she loved in the end. 


Even if it almost destroyed her. 


Well, at least she was able to build herself back up again, right? 


"Here's your iced tea, Irene." Seulgi says, and in such an awkwardly surprising manner, Irene utters something she knows she shouldn't. 


"Salamat, Mahal—" 


She stops herself before she could get herself in an awkward position any longer, because she knows that it affects the both of them judging by how Seulgi visibly flinched with such a familiar pet name. 


"Sorry," Irene says, taking hold of the situation before it goes to utter . "Habits die hard kasi…" 


"It's okay," Seulgi says, smiling, and Irene knows she shouldn't. "I don't mind naman." 


Stop it. 


"Okay," is all that Irene could answer, leaving everything behind. 


"If we don't have any

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forgotme #1
Chapter 18: Grabe nman mapanakit..
Wala bang part 2 ung continuation 😁✌️
Chapter 18: wtf did i just read 😭😭😭😭😭 ang sakit sakit ng puso ko sobra ano to
Chapter 18: Sobrang sakit ng fic na 'to. Cried too much from reading this. So beautifully written and so painfully good. Made me realize so much. Thank you for this work, author!
Reveluvteddy #4
Chapter 18: This is really good. Hurt so good 💔
Chapter 5: Ang ganda ng story na 'to! Nasa chapter 4 pa lang ako pero parang may ib-binge read ako ngayon😭

This story deserves more comments and reads! I'm guessing the reason why di gaanong kilala 'tong story na 'to even tho it's so good is because you didn't put a "seulrene" tag on its own sa description. I was only able to find this story through twitter :((
957 streak #6
Chapter 5: Haist talaga seulrene!! Panindigan niyo rin ang kilig ko sa inyo, galawin niyo na ang barko juseyo 🥺 missed ko na kayo 😭
spagtitty #7
Chapter 18: Thank you so much for this masterpiece, author. I never knew I needed a beautifully written fic in my life. god im so glad dementia runs in my family and because of that i can read this again and again and again and experience catharsis 🧎🏻‍♀️
spagtitty #8
Chapter 14: ṣ̸̛̺̞̯̬̍̏̓̀̅̚̕e̶̘̤̪̟̭̰͑ư̵̳̱̥̙͆͐̌͋̂̈̈̅̍l̵̥̓͐̈́̓̌̃͂̅͝r̶̯͇̪͓͈̭̫̟̉͑͛̏̿̊è̶̛̙̙̭̖̦͐̀̓̐̓̓̇̀ņ̷̖͈̱͍͗́ê̵̬̗̪̫̆́̍͆͛͠f̷͈̹̜̦͍̱̉͐̉̅̈́̃̚͠l̵̫͂͗͆͌̈́̎̃̎͝ủ̶̡̡̻͈̠̤f̵̰̬͎͚͇̯̓̈́̌ͅf̵̡͓̙͕͓̞̳̞̀̍͋̚͜͜͝