9. DO—Help Each Other with Relationships

The Do's and Don'ts of a Friendly Relationship [Hiatus]

              It’s been two weeks since Dawn and I became a couple, and honestly, I didn’t really know what to do about it. We met each other often for meals and hung out in each other’s rooms until visitor hours were over, but otherwise, it didn’t really seem like we did many couple-y things.

              “I know that look,” Jessica said, pushing her face into my view. A little startled, I retracted my head a bit.

              “Hm?” I responded.

              “You’re thinking about something…” she said ponderously, sitting on the bed next to me. The school had finally decided to remove the cameras installed in our room a few days ago after randomly deciding to extend the observation period. I still tried to convince Jessi to sleep on her own bed, which worked—sometimes.

              “Hm? Like what?” I asked, curious to see if she could guess correctly.

              “Well you usually don’t spend too much time just thinking about school work, so the next most important thing to you would be Dawn. Recently, I noticed you sorta seemed discontent after Dawn leaves for her room or when you come back from her’s, so I’m guessing you’re thinking about how your relationship with her doesn’t seem satisfactory to you?”

              I paused for a moment, trying to grasp how perfectly she had described my thoughts. “You’re wasting your school career being a computer science major; you should be a therapist or become a mentalist or something,” I told her. Despite her cutesy, child-like appearance she always displayed, it was hard to remember that she was actually really smart and actually refused acceptance to MIT to come here with me.

              She giggled. “So was I correct?”

              “Spot on,” I told her. “Damn, I wish you would just stop reading my mind. I feel like my thoughts are never safe anymore,” I said, covering my head. “I should wear a tin-foil hat from now on or something.”

              “Something that simple wouldn’t work against me,” she said, smiling, tapping my hands with her fingers.

              I just stared at her in response, to which she just playfully grinned at me. “Now you’re thinking how someone as childish as me could be so smart, right?” she said.

              I scooted away from her, because that literally was exactly what I was thinking. “What? I was just kidding!” she said, laughing a bit.

              “So your powers are so great that you just subconsciously read other people’s minds, huh?” I said.

              “Nah, it’s just you,” she said, getting up and sitting back down on her bed, behind her laptop. As I mentioned, Jessi was a computer science major, so she programmed frequently. Of course, she had the required Computer Science classes for her major, but she typically finished those assignments the day they were assigned, if not the day after, so instead, she worked on some type of private project she wouldn’t tell me about.

              I sighed. “I hope that doesn’t mean I’m just that easy to read,” I said, looking back at my laptop screen that was resting on my own bed.

              The room came with two sets of desks, but neither of us elected to use them because we found the bed much more comfortable.

              “Never mind that, what should we do about your and Dawn’s relationship? I can help,” she offered, looking up from her laptop and at me.

              I nodded. “That would be nice. Wait, are friends allowed to do this?” I asked, suddenly thinking about it. At the start of school, that would seem like a ridiculous question to ask—I mean, it was just helping someone else with a relationship, right? But then again, apparently, normal friends don’t feed each other, which was news to both of us.

              “Hm, I don’t know. I mean, I would guess that it’s not, but apparently, feeding each other is also something we’re not supposed to do,” she noted. I made a noise that was somewhere in between a grunt and a snort. “What, was that what you were thinking?” she said, giggling.

              “I have my own dignity, so I’m going to say no,” I told her defiantly, starting to work on the linear algebra problem on the screen in front of me.

              I didn’t see her response, so I could only assume she was smiling smugly. “Ok, I’ll plan out something for Saturday. Don’t worry, leave it to me!”

              But for some reason, I didn’t feel too reassured about that.

~The Do’s and Don’ts of a Friendly Relationship~

              This time, when we got off the bus, we made sure no shady Jessica-like people were following us off the bus as we got off.

              It was Saturday, and Jessi basically hoarded Dawn and me to the bus stop, gave us a bus stop ot get off of and two addresses, and then pushed us onto the bus. I haven’t really been downtown much, so I didn’t really know what to expect, and apparently, neither did Dawn.

              “I think we turn right at the second street light,” I said, looking at my phone’s map.

              “Wait, you can’t even turn right over there though,” Dawn commented. I looked ahead and sure enough, the street on the right was blocked due to construction.

              I laughed. “Well, that’s … uh, that’s my phone’s fault and my phone’s fault alone,” I said defensively, trying to get my phone to reroute us. “Usually, Google Maps is better about this stuff, right?”

              “Well, they might have just set up the blockade,” Dawn said.

              “I guess,” I replied, shrugging.

              After a few minutes, we arrived at a karaoke bar; I had been to a few when I went to Korea, but I’ve never seen one in America. “Oh wow, karaoke?” I said, looking up. The fancy cursive words, lit up with a multitude of neon lights, on top of the building named it “Karaoke Inn”.

              “Wow, didn’t know we had one so near college,” Dawn said. “I’ve been to a few in China, but never one in America.”

              “Yeah, me too. Well, except it’s Korea for me, of course,” I said, walking in.

              “Hello and welcome to Karaoke Inn!” the employee, dressed in a nice velvety dark-red suit with blue buttons, behind the desk greeted us as we walked into the air-conditioned building. It was fall already, so the temperature was cooling down; still, we were in California, so air-conditioning always felt nice.

              “Hi, I think we have a reservation for Alex?” I said.

              “Ok, one second please,” the lady behind the counter said, flipping through what I guess was a reservation book or something like that. “Yes, you have room 2012. Please follow him,” she said, directing us to another male employee who was dressed in a similar uniform.

              He smiled and greeted us, guiding us into the elevator. “Are you two a couple?” he asked politely.

              “Yup!” Dawn responded brightly, gripping my arm. I smiled with her, partially in response to the question, and partially because of Dawn.

              “Ah, I see,” he said, smiling back. Just then, the elevator stopped and the door opened. “Right this way please,” he said, guiding us down the hall. As we followed him, he continued on, saying, “I hope you two have a wonderful time. The pair of you two are really attractive, so I’m sort of jealous for both of you.”

              For both of us? For some reason, that part of the sentence didn’t click with me for the longest time—and apparently, for Dawn too.

              “Oh, I’m sorry if I made you two uncomfortable,” he said, turning around and doing a polite bow.

              “Oh no, it’s ok. It was insensible for us to not understand right away that you were biual,” I responded.

              “No, it’s ok,” he said, pointing to the room on his right. I could see on the gilded black-marble placard just to the right of the door that this was room 2012. “Well, here is your room,” he said, opening the door for us.

              As we walked in, I was greeted with an essentially familiar sight; dim lighting with couches lining one wall and the TV screen lining the opposite wall, the karaoke song-choosing kiosk on the opposite side of the door.

              “If you need anything, please feel free to contact me with this button,” he said, pointing to a palm-sized rectangular device with a button that had a picture of an attendant on it. “Our menu is located under the table, so if you get hungry or thirsty, you can order from there,” he told us.

              I looked under the table out of curiosity and located the mentioned menu. “Have you ever been to karaoke before?” he asked.

              “Yeah,” we both responded.

              “Ok, so I assume that you know how to work the song-selecting kiosk?” We nodded in response. “Ok! Well, if you need any help, please contact me and I will be glad to help. Thank you for choosing us, and have a pleasant stay!”

              And with that, he left.

              “Do you want anything to eat or drink?” I asked, grabbing the menu and opening it, starting to flip through it.

              Dawn, on the other hand, was already sitting behind the kiosk, typing away on the screen. “No, I’m fine,” she told me.

              “Are you sure? How about a mango smoothie?” I said as I found it on the menu.

              I saw her hesitate for a second. “No, it’s ok,” she ended up saying.

              “You hesitated,” I said accusingly.

              “No I didn’t!” she whined.

              “So that means you do want it right? But you’re worried it costs too much?” I said.

              “No, it’s just … I’m on a diet, so I can’t eat or drink things other than meals,” she told me.

              “You’re on a diet? But aren’t you too skinny to be on a diet?” I said in disbelief.

              She laughed, turning a little pink at that, which was so cute. “Well, I read somewhere that some people, when they get into a relationship, stop caring about their appearances and their health, so I want to try to prevent that,” she explained.

              “Oh, I think I read that too,” I said, closing the menu. “Ok, I’ll diet with you then,” I told her.

              “Ok! I’m done choosing,” she said, stepping away from the kiosk and grabbing a microphone. The screen changed and was replaced with a yellow-brick background decorated with a few blue and red posters with white cursive words written across them; on top of the background, four pink letters appeared in sync with the song: “U Y O U”.

              “No way,” I said, looking at her. Dawn was Chinese, but was also a fan of Kpop like me. I had told her before that my favorite song was called “U You” by APINK—but the song was in Korean, so I didn’t really know what to expect.

              “Mhm,” she said, grabbing the microphone and standing closer to the screen, presumably for more space.

              “You learned how to sing the song?” I asked her.

              “And a little more,” she said, cutely winking at me before beginning.

~The Do’s and Don’ts of a Friendly Relationship~

              “That was nice,” Dawn said as we departed from the room.

              “I really like your performance though,” I noted. She turned slightly pink at that, which caused me to laugh. “It was really cute,” I told her.

              “I made so many mistakes though,” she said, whining a bit. This was one thing about her; Dawn had a lot of natural aegyo—that is, she naturally acted cute a lot.

              “You only had a few weeks to learn, and didn’t even have time to prepare for this, so it’s fine,” I said.

              She nodded. “Next time, it’ll be better.”

              After that, we moved on to the next address.

              “I hope it’s a restaurant, I’m hungry,” Dawn said as I grabbed a hold of her hand.

              “Yeah, me too,” I said, swinging our interlocked hands slightly.

              Apparently, the next location was extremely close by because we arrived within four minutes of walking. “Oh, it is a restaurant,” I commented as we approached the address.

              “Oh come on then, let’s go inside already,” she said, basically dragging me in.

              I couldn’t help but chuckle at that. “What happened to your diet?”

              “Well, that doesn’t mean I don’t get hungry,” she said as we entered the restaurant. “Hi, reservation for Alex and Dawn.”

              “Yes, right this way please. Also, I was told to give you this,” the waitress said, handing Dawn a slip of paper.

              I looked over Dawn’s shoulder to see what was on it.

              “Ha, that’s cute,” she said. On it was Jessi’s handwriting, written on it was: “Have fun you two! ^_^--Jessica and Tiffany”

              So I guess normal friends do help out with relationships, I thought to myself.

              When I got back later that evening, after surviving Jessi’s interrogation, I remembered to write down “DO—Help Each Other with Relationships”.

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Jaehyun2017 #1
Chapter 10: This story is so cute. Please continue this Author nim
Chapter 10: This is so cute!!! ^^
zSecretz #3
Chapter 5: Update soon pls!!!!
tommyo9876 #4
Plz update soon!