Red String of Fate [One Shot]
By La Fata Aurora
Out of all the things that Yi Jeong thought he'd find himself do in this lifetime, this, apparently, had to be in the bottom of his list.
"Aisssh…" The twenty-five year old young man caught himself swearing, mumbling under his breath as his hand came in contact with something cold. He stifled a shiver, mentally cursing Woo Bin and Jan Di for their failed attempts, Ji Hoo for even remotely thinking of this deprecating idea, and Jun Pyo for…ugh...just being Jun Pyo.
Oh my Lord God in Heaven…Yi Jeong shuffled the rest of the contents with a painful look on his face. He swears that he could almost hear Giacomo Casanova laughing at him from his grave. He was so close to the end of his patience when he slightly shifted to his left, giving him a clear sight of the bed, the young woman peacefully resting on top of it, and he stopped.
Screw you, Casanova! Yi Jeong found himself smiling at the sleeping profile of the most beautiful girl in the world. His Ga Eul yang. Bet you didn't have that in your sorry lifetime!
He immediately went back into raiding her dresser.
So, Ji Hoo's plan went like this: Get Ga Eul out of the bedroom, and then attack—and when he said attack, he meant to look for the much coveted jewelry box in record time. Jan Di, who failed to acquire the said item while pretending to have dropped her engagement ring inside their bedroom (Oh c'mon, Jan Di, how the HELL would you drop that thing that you love so much in our bedroom?), scoffed at the suggestion, stating that it would elicit suspicions from her bestfriend since Yi Jeong had this unhealthy habit of keeping Ga Eul inside the bedroom instead of out of it. Woo Bin, who also failed miserably in his mission (which was half-assedly done because in the middle of him pretending to be double-o-seven Miss Monkey decided to FINALLY call him back), couldn't agree more, having the audacity to sound 'Almighty', when he himself screwed up so bad, Yi Jeong had to console a shaky Ga Eul who woke up at freaking one o' clock in the morning to the scandalous sound of Jaws!
But then again on the bright side…Yi Jeong thought shamelessly, carefully scanning the second drawer with an evil smile on his lips. Because of their failures, Yi Jeong had 'no choice' but to resort to his 'emergency measures'. Since he can't possibly keep Ga Eul out of the room without 'eliciting unwanted suspicions', why not keep her inside, so dead tired she'd sleep like a log?
Oh, the pressure of being an ex-Casanova. Yi Jeong nodded proudly to himself. Ga Eul wouldn't be able to walk upright for the next two days…
Who would have ever thought that looking up the measurement of Ga Eul's ring finger would turn this…complicated?
"Got it!" Yi Jeong emerged victoriously a little while later, Ga Eul's jewelry box at hand. Quietly, he opened the little square container with nimble hands, scanning for a ring that he could steal for a few days and hand to the jewelry maker.
And his heart just had to swell with pride upon seeing what were inside.
Ga Eul wasn't really a jewelry person. Yi Jeong knew she preferred his hugs and kisses, although once in a while, he would indulge himself by purchasing jewelry for her in his many travels. Inside the box, he found all of them meticulously kept and arranged by type, neat—so like something only she would do—the thoughtfulness making him sigh in disbelief. Yi Jeong glanced back at her sleeping profile once again. Sometimes, he still couldn't believe how he managed to snag her, considering how messed up he was before. Chu Ga Eul, the 'unsophisticated country bumpkin', had Casanova's number from the very beginning, and the Casanova, the mighty Casanova, was powerless against her.
Yi Jeong pensively stared inside the jewelry box again. Ga Eul rearranged his life for him, just like how she did with his gifts; she was that kind of person…and Yi Jeong would be very humbled if she'd accept him as her lifetime partner.
Oh, here it is. Yi Jeong rubbed the tip of his finger over a familiar looking ring at the left corner of the box. It was happily tucked in one of those ring pillows, the only ring inside the box, in fact. Jan Di had given it to Ga Eul before her wedding, saying that the friendship ring would reinforce their bond, as the former would now be busy carrying the responsibilities of being both a first year resident and the wife of Gu Jun Pyo.
She could have just given me the measurement. Yi Jeong thought wryly, picking the ring with his index finger and thumb. Saves me all this trouble…
Yi Jeong narrowed his eyes. The ring refused to budge from the pocket, so he gave it a stronger thug. It eventually came out, and along with it was a silver necklace that had a maple leaf pendant dangling on the chain.
Yi Jeong blinked his eyes. He couldn't believe it.
ShinHwa Metropolitan Hospital, Twenty Years Ago
The Maple Leaf Girl is at it again.
From five year old Yi Jeong's view behind the bushes, he could see the Maple Leaf Girl laughing as she stood over the spinning merry-go-round, none a care about the world around her, and even inspiring smiles from the patients and nurses passing by. It's his second time seeing her ever since his mom was taken in the hospital, for reasons that were yet known to his innocent mind.
"Appa! Omma!" She suddenly threw her hands up in the air, waving them to a beautiful couple approaching the merry-go-round. Yi Jeong shifted from his spot, the scratchy leaves grazing his arm, but his eyes never left the sparkling man and woman both descending to the scene like a pair of angels from Heaven. The man, 'Appa', was tall and good-looking. Although he wasn't wearing those custom suits that Yi Jeong would always find his father flaunting around town, he still appeared very handsome, donning a simple gray sweater and brown colored pants.
It was probably because he's smiling. Yi Jeong narrowed his eyes, observing the crinkles on the corner of the man's eyes. The little boy turned his attention to 'Omma', who was brightly smiling at the Maple Leaf Girl from her wheelchair. She could be the world's most beautiful woman that he's ever seen.
"Omma!" the Maple Leaf Girl jumped from the merry-go-round, prompting a stifled breath from her father and a musical laugh from her pretty mom. She jumped so abruptly that she had to take a moment to balance herself on the ground, before shooting towards her mother, who now had her arms open just for her baby girl, "I saw the world turn into different colors! Just like you said!"
"Oh really?" Omma giggled, glancing up to her husband for bit, "How many colors did you see this time?"
The Maple Leaf girl stepped back, unconsciously reaching for her pendant. It was shaped like a maple leaf, with a lone diamond sparkling on the tip, as if somebody was able to crystallize an early morning drop of dew from ever falling to the ground. The first time Yi Jeong spotted her in the playground was because of that pendant, catching his eye as it reflected a beam of light to his direction. That hurt. The little boy remembered. He just finished crying his fright away and she just had to shine that thing into his swollen eyes.
Yi Jeong looked up and saw his brother's face poking into the bushes.
"Omeoni wants to see you." Il Hyun gently gestured his hand for him to come out, stepping away. He looked much more solemn than Yi Jeong would normally see him be, "Let's go."
Their mother has been sick lately, and unlike the Maple Leaf Girl's mother, theirs looked like she wasn't ready to go out of the hospital. Yi Jeong frowned at his brother. He was scared. He didn't want to see their mother right now.
"Jeongie? What's wrong?"
Yi Jeong bit his teeth together. Why can't their family be like Maple Leaf Girl's? Abeoji is always away, and Omeoni, if she wasn't crying, she was always quiet, looking at him and his brother like she hated them, or even worse, not know them. Yi Jeong would always be afraid to look at their mother because of that. He didn't like the way she stares at him, as if angry at something that he did.
Maple Leaf Girl laughed again, making Yi Jeong turn around. She makes it seems so easy to cuddle up with her parents. With a finger on her cheek, she started humming a tune that he vaguely recognized, earning a hair ruffle from her dad.
"I don't even know why your Omma named you like that." Her Appa snickered, earning a playful push from his wife, "Leaves falling into the ground seemed really sad to me, like someone is leaving and not coming back…"
But obviously, Little Maple Leaf Girl disagreed. Cheekily, she stuck her chin forward, so smugly her Omma choked back a giggle, "Omma said that the leaves falling by itself are beautiful. The leaves falling is only part of the reason why Omma chose my name…She said that even though the leaves were like saying goodbye, it gives hope to those who see the wonderful picture they make at the end!"
"But isn't Winter the same thing?" Her Appa gently argued, pursing his lips, "Or maybe Summer? Aissh…I wanted to name you Spring!"
"Chagi…" His wife gave him a little pat, "I think I would also have to remind you that we met on an au—"
Yi Jeong felt his brother grab him by the arm, pulling him out of the bushes. Surprised, he swallowed an annoyed protest, glaring at him as Il Hyun dragged him to hospital building. "Yi Jeong-ie, we have to go!"
"I like my name as it is!"
Yi Jeong threw her one final look. She was really bright, this girl.
Yi Jeong turned away before their eyes could even meet.
He was going to see his Omeoni now.
"What the—?" Yi Jeong muttered loudly at the necklace. He stole an apprehensive glance at Ga Eul before turning back to it. He really couldn't believe this. This is impossible.
Yi Jeong glared at the chain and the knots that it made around ring. He doesn't have time for this! Ga Eul is gonna stir awake soon and—
Yi Jeong froze, quickly shoving the jewelry box to a direction he hoped Ga Eul wouldn't see. He prayed fervently that Ga Eul would rub her eyes first like she always does when she wakes up, giving him time to hide the evidence of his snooping.
"Have you seen my eyeglasses?" Yi Jeong heard his girlfriend's hand toppling the alarm clock over. He almost died in relief, "I'm really certain that I left it here…"
"Ah…look over at my side of the bed." Yi Jeong's throat croaked out, carefully slipping the jewelry box back into the cabinet and the necklace with the ring into his pocket. He heard Ga Eul scoot over to his nightstand, "Any luck?"
"Oh, here it is." Ga Eul started giggling, "Oww…"
Yi Jeong finally turned around, seeing her awkwardly sit on the bed, "What's wrong?"
Ga Eul gave him a cynical look, not saying anything.
"What? What did I do?"
She wordlessly pointed at her painful hips, and then at him. Yi Jeong laughed at the implications of her accusation.
"You were a very naughty boy, So Yi Jeong."
Yi Jeong didn't miss a bit, feeling himself go alive, once again, "For a kindergarten teacher, you sure have a way of sounding really sexy, Chu seonsangnim."
Ga Eul flashed him an impish smile, "I told you, we nice girls don't necessarily like nice boys."
"Amen to that." And oh God, wasn't he thankful for that.
"Sunbae?" she suddenly frowned. Yi Jeong saw her painstakingly push away from the bed to walk beside him, her eyes zeroed on his pants. Yi Jeong was about to say that he'd want that too but in her condition he'd seem like an insensitive sexual deviant, when she stopped in front of him.
"Sunbae, why do you have my necklace with you?"
She asked, pointing at the maple leaf pendant hanging by his pocket.
A/N: I've said this before, but I'd say it again: HAHAHAHAHAHA. Good luck getting out of that, Jeongie! :)