Disclaimer: You've heard me say it a thousand times...

Dedicated to Razer and Thunderxtw. Thank you, you two. :)


Only Human

Lili stepped into Room 126 of the Seoul General Hospital, carrying a fresh bouquet of orange poppies with her. She flew from her faraway home just to visit a certain special someone confined in the hospital. The white pavement, ceilings and walls were almost blinding.

Almost in heaven...

The letter sent so earnestly by Master Baek stated that his no-good pupil was confined in the hospital for almost a week now. Both arms were broken, and so were his legs.

It was just a silly waking request, but Hwoarang wanted to see Lili. A childish whim. It was also stated in the same letter that Hwoarang got into this strange and unheard street fight with someone— or rather, something that almost killed him.

The stubborn idiot didn't even turn back.

And so, the princess finally stepped inside Room 126 of the hospital. The elder martial artist was calmly seated down on a chair, just right beside where his student was lying down. Hearing the door open, he turned to the young lady standing by the doorstep.

"Miss Lili," Master Baek said, standing from his seat.

"Master..." the princess said, pausing, then turning to her red knight, her eyes so full of worry and gloominess.

It wasn't like her to worry about a guy she barely knew. Yes, they did have a good time hanging out during the previous tournament... But Hwoarang was a grown-up man. She was sure he didn't need a little princess to worry about him.

Or did he?

"He's still asleep. He woke up a few days ago, saying that he wanted to see the princess."

Master Baek tried to be calm and still, despite the fact that his troublesome protégé was lying on a hospital bed, both arms and legs in casts, his consciousness unstable and his life still in deep water.

"Master, I... I'm sorry if I arrived late."

"It's fine. I think that you should wait for him to wake up. I'll go get us something to eat."

"Master, don't bother..." she tried to stop him, but the Master placed a steady hand on her shoulder.

"No, I'll be fine. The hospital canteen isn't far."

He left the room.

Lili saw an empty vase on the bedside table. She quietly took the vase and filled it with water, then placing the orange poppies she got for the red knight. Once she put the vase in place again, she sat down on the chair where their master sat a while ago. Giving her full attention to her unconscious red knight, she tried to hold his hand, but his whole arm was injured. She might end up wounding him even more.

"Hey... Can you hear me?" she leaned down and whispered, but he just lay there, inattentive to what was happening around him. "Sleepyhead... idiot-brain... Why didn't you run away?..."

She stifled a cry and a few tears, even biting her lip to prevent her from tearing, but it came. Warm, warm tears rolled down her cheeks. "Idiot..."

And just like her tears were waking calls, the red woke up from his incognizant state, opening his eyes slowly, only to see Lili crying over him.

"Well... If it isn't the Princess..." as weak as his call was, but she heard him. She heard his call. "Why the heck... are you crying?... I'm not dead, you know."

"But you almost killed yourself, idiot!" her voice rose.

"I know that... But I'm still alive, right?" he said with this as-a-matter-of-fact voice.

"Yes. With both your arms and legs cracked and plastered," she said pointedly.

He sighed, almost annoyed. "You're overreacting."

She looked at him, disbelief painted all over her face. "You called me all the way here just to tell me that? I flew all the way from the other side of the world just to hear you say that?"

He smiled at her. "No, Princess. I called you... because I missed you."

Silence...

"If only you knew... How much I wanted to fly to where you were... How much I wanted to see that lovely smile of yours... That smile only meant for my eyes... But here you are, crying over me..."

"Hwoarang, I..."

"Princess... I don't want to see you crying."

So Lili wiped away her tears with her white sleeve and smiled. "I-Is this better?"

Hwoarang smiled. "Much better."

Master Baek just got back from the canteen, but he didn't want to ruin this gentle moment between the two, so he stayed by the door instead, listening. The princess smiled serenely, stroking her red knight's hair.

"Promise me that you'll get well soon."

"I promise."

"Hwoarang, you're only human... And so am I..." she kissed his forehead. "Please... Get well soon."

The elder couldn't help but smile as he leaned against the door frame. That idiot of a student of mine is so lucky to have such a caring princess...

"Princess, stay for a while... I'm only human, right?... And this human needs you by his side."

"I'll stay..."

And Master Baek entered the room, placing a bag of dough nuts and hot chocolate at the table, "That's right, Miss Lili. Stay a bit longer so my idiot student will get better soon. And I suppose you can talk some sense into his already-severely-damaged brain."

He couldn't suppress the grin. He smiled at the young individuals.

"After all, we're only human, right?"