X. Periods and Puppets

Stalemate
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"Have you been crying?” Seulgi asked incredulously when Irene opened her front door for her neighbour.

 

“Raccoons trying to eat cotton candy are the modern day Sisyphus,” Irene sniffled, making Seulgi snort and pinch her cheek. “You don’t understand, Seulgi! The raccoon keeps washing the cotton candy, and it just disappears, right? It just disappears! The cotton candy was right in the raccoon’s hands, and this chonky guy is thinking, ‘, yes, I’m gonna eat a cloud,’ and he can’t understand where he went wrong, but they’ll never be together! That cotton candy is never coming back, and the raccoon is doomed to forever keep washing the cotton candy that he will never get to enjoy!” Irene sobbed.

 

Seulgi laughed, but pulled the older woman into her arms. “And that’s relatable to you? You ing weirdo!”

 

“I mean, we all keep trying and trying, but none of us are ever going to be truly happy,” Irene said in a comic moroseness. “Wait, why are you here?”

 

“Wendy called me?” Seulgi said in a mix of amusement and mild confusion. “She said that she was at a work conference in Japan, and that you were sick?” the bear asked, giving her neighbour a once-over. Irene was in her usual comfy sweats, but apart from the crying and the unfortunate fashion choices, she didn't look unhealthy. 

 

“Ugh, she’s so dramatic,” Irene said, fighting a blush. “I’m just on my period, and I don’t feel so great.” 

 

“Cute,” Seulgi commented dryly. “Well, she left me with some very specific instructions on how to take care of you,” the bear said, holding up a brown paper bag. “She made me pick up some kimchijjigae, and I’m supposed to heat up Mr. Snuggles and your blanket in the dryer so they’re nice and warm.”

 

Seulgi pushed past Irene and headed to the kitchen to put the soup down on the counter.

 

“Omg, Wendy is so ridiculous! Sweet though,” Irene said, biting her lower lip. 

 

“Pfft, she’s so sweet, but I’m the one stuck here doing all the work,” Seulgi grumbled.

 

“God, people are going to think we’re a throuple,” Irene laughed.

 

“Yes, but a throuple of what?” the bear joked, striding into Irene’s bedroom, full of purpose, before poking her head out. “What… is a Mr. Snuggles?”

 

“That’s classified information. You stay away from Mr. Snuggles!”

 

“What, I’m good enough to have a with, but I don’t have clearance to meet Mr. Snuggles?” Seulgi asked in mock hurt. 

 

“Yes,” Irene said flatly, crossing her arms stubbornly.

 

“Is he a toy?”

 

“No!”

 

“Is he the last remaining vestige of your heterouality?” 

 

“Ugh… go away, Seulgi!”

 

“I can’t! I have strict orders from Wendy! How come she gets to know what a Mr. Snuggles is?” Seulgi pouted. 

 

“‘Cause she doesn’t make fun of me!”

 

“Hehehehe,” Seulgi chuckled evilly. “It’s just too easy I can’t resist.”

 

 

*

 

 

Seulgi had finally fed Irene some soup, and had wrapped her into a bunnyburrito with a warm blanket. They were on the couch, watching YouTube videos.

 

“Hey, so I just found out that Wendy and I are the same age,” Seulgi said suddenly.

 

“Uh, yeah. I never realized, but I guess, yeah,” Irene replied absentmindedly.

 

Seulgi waggled her brows greasily at Irene.

 

“What?” the older asked, raising an eyebrow haughtily.

 

“You have a ,” Seulgi grinned accusingly.

 

“I… what??? A for what, idiots?”

 

“A for people exactly three years younger than you, so we’re not too young and we still understand all your ahjumma references, but we’re young enough that you can boss us around.”

 

“That- ohmygod, it’s true…”

 

Seulgi was laughing so hard. “Omg, Baechu! You’re so easy to gaslight into submission!”

 

 

*

 

 

“So, was that your first ?” Seulgi asked, scooching closer to where Irene was sitting on the edge of the couch.

 

“Yeah, it was,” the Baechubunny replied, shoving Seulgi’s face away with a playful grimace, when the younger had pushed her nose right to Irene’s face. 

 

“How was it?”

 

“It was okay,” Irene said, trying to keep from snickering. She knew the offhand comment would be triggering to Seulgi, who prided herself on her ual prowess.

 

The bear got surprisingly quiet and pensive though. 

 

“Hey, I was kidding,” Irene said with a nudge to Seulgi’s shoulder. “It was obviously insanely hot. I mean, I… I squirted,” she added, blushing. 

 

Seulgi smiled wistfully. “You know I think you’re my best friend?”

 

Irene smiled back, tracing the shell of Seulgi’s ear. “Yeah? Me? Not Krystal whom you’ve known since the Jurassic period?”

 

“She’s the friend I’ve known the longest,” Seulgi explained. “I hang out with a lot of people. And they’re awesome people. I just don’t think they know me very well. Also, they’re more likely to land me in jail than to bail me out, y’know?” she added with quiet chuckle.

 

“Hmmn… well, you and Wendy are my only friends, really,” Irene said, before suddenly burying her face in Seulgi’s neck and sniffing wildly like a rabid bloodhound. 

 

“What the !” Seulgi laughed, trying to squirm away. “Stop! What are you doing?”

 

“You smell good,” Irene whined, trying to sniff some more. 

 

“Stop! That tickles!” Seulgi shrieked.

 

Irene climbed on top of the bear, straddling her. Seulgi discovered Irene was surprisingly strong for an Oompa Loompa, as she held down the younger woman and ticklesniffed to her heart’s content. 

 

 

*

 

 

“Is she Nanalan?”

 

“What?? No! She’s Mona!”

 

“So the one with the Jersey tan is Nanalan?”

 

“Seulgi, the orange one is Nana. The show is called Nanalan ‘cause she’s hanging with her grandmother. It’s Nana land.”

 

Seulgi was quiet for a moment.

 

“So she’s an alien?” Seulgi asked, scrunching her nose in confusion.

 

“What?? No!”

 

“A frog?”

 

“Seulgi.” 

 

“I don’t understand! She looks like Yoda!”

 

“She’s a kid hanging out with her grandma!”

 

Seulgi paused to watch.

 

“Is she speaking English? Or any actual language? I feel like I’m high.”

 

“Right? It’s awesome. She’s so ing cute,” Irene said with a psychotic look in her eyes. “Like you…” she said slowly, eyes widening in a crazed realization before she took the bear’s cheeks to pinch them hard, like she was stretching pizza dough or trying to rip a mochi to pieces. 

 

“Oooooww!” Seulgi howled in pain. “Joohyun, what the ! You’re crazy! What are you doing?!”

 

The younger tried to fend off her neighbour, who was once again straddling her, pinching any inch of exposed flesh she could get her murderous hands on, gnawing on Seulgi’s shoulder like she was a zombie. 

 

“My god, you really are a teddy bear- no! A gummy bear!” Irene said, pupils blown in excited insanity. 

 

“Help,” Seulgi squeaked weakly.

 

 

*

 

 

It was ten pm when Seulgi let Wendy into Irene’s apartment. 

 

“Damn, did you come here straight from the airport?” 

 

“I just wanted to check on her,” Wendy explained sheepishly.

 

“I say check her into an institution!” Seulgi said in a bellowing whisper, her eyes welling up with indignant tears.

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dancingseulo
0 points #1
Chapter 17: Oh damn didn’t expect Seulgi will move in with Rosé. The saddest part is they have always known they love each other 🙂‍↔️
eunxiaoxlove 0 points #2
Chapter 18: Yieeeee nicee
VanguardLancer
0 points #3
Chapter 18: Oops, we are on a ride! ... Well, the first few paragraphs were indeed quite a rollercoaster of revelations. 😂 I can't say that I'm completely surprised, but I also can certainly say that I am FAR from disappointed.

FINALLY. The universe has conspired well! A COSMIC kind of love that transcends time and space 🥹 (Which, hey, by the way is such a fun coincidence. Our space buddies are indeed reaching for the stars again soon!)

Can't wait to see more of these crackheads again soon!
scarlet511 0 points #4
Chapter 18: Omggg this chapter is so cute and ngl I'm happy reading the revelation of their feeling. It's funny but heartwarming nonetheless.
I thought it's gonna end w the story goes but you still have more? Yeay thanks!
taenyworth
0 points #5
Chapter 18: Ngl maybe I'm just stupid or dense but when Jisoo called and brought up Jennie I was like damn another girl for Irene's reborn so I really really have the same reaction as Irene when she told that she married. To Rosie wkwkw anyway I just wonder shen Seulgi suddenly came to Irene's door in this chapter, is it because Irene suddenly contact her or? Just coincidentally she just mean to visit her? With the Chinese food one I mean?
And thank for the update anyway 👍👍
regurgitate 0 points #6
Chapter 18: Chapter 18: This chapter reminded me of Say Anything, the carry-the-boombox-scene, which then reminded me of Grey's Anatomy, particularly the scene of Meredith Grey saying "pick me, choose me, love me" and just 80s, early 2000s movies overall. This was wonderfully written. One part romcom twist (Rosie + Jennie), one part American Pie-ish kind of cute+y combo (I don't know, I got reminded of Michelle + Jim, because they're funny but sweet too, a shade similar to the dynamic between Seulgi and Irene here), but all parts that are very much grounded into reality, especially when you pointed out that being single doesn't make a person emotionally available or ready right away. Good job, author. Really enjoyed this one.
KaiserKawaii 15 streak #7
Chapter 18: Hahah. Lol. As expected. The mess is kinda funny.
username404 #8
Chapter 17: I lowkey wish for Rosie's ex to return ._.
dancingseulo
#9
Chapter 16: Wenrene is finally over. What will Seulrene do now 👀
arqshime
272 streak #10
Chapter 17: Oh author! I can't wait for the grand fluffy fest of love! I'm so ready!!! Hehe I wasn't even bothered with the slight angst. I know the good stuff will be even sweeter to read after that. The seulrene talk was really great, the way they understood each other without saying the actual words... genius! Thank you for being so consistent with your updates. You're the best! 🧡