~27

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I felt Y/N lean her head against my shoulder. "I'm...kinda tired."

I nodded. How many hours has it been? One? Two? Time was funny whenever I visited one's memories. I could spend 24 hours in a person's mind when 2 minutes would have been spent in the real world. "Take all the time you need. Who knows when Mr. Im would save us?"

Y/N exhaled. "Not yet. I waited for eternity to finish before Mr. Im finally came. She told him too late."

I laid my head on top of Y/N's, sleep overcoming me as well. "Well, since we've got eternity left, should we sleep? Young Y/N's already drained out."

I watched as Y/N shifted her position. "Let her be. It's gonna be a long night for her."

"She did well." I answered. "It's amazing how she did well, standing her ground like that. Her soulmates would be proud of her."

There was a long pause before she spoke again. "I wish you were here with me back then."

"Well, now I am. I'm here with both of yourselves."


Y/N POV:

With Jungkook here, he made it seem like my memories weren't so bad.

He didn't sugarcoat it, which, in some way, I was grateful for. After all, sugarcoating a traumatic experience makes it seem like I was a complete idiot for thinking that way. But he did show his support and comfort, making it all seem better.

With the blindfold he gave me, I felt some of his reactions and feelings about the memories he saw, and it made me feel more confident that there was someone who valued and cared about me. And, boy, was I grateful for that blindfold.

I could hear the words everyone were saying, though it did come out a bit faint and gentle. Though I could somehow see everything that was happening, the blindfold was stopping the panic, fear, and resentment I have always felt. It helped me see my past in a different manner, from a different perspective. And I knew...I wouldn't allow myself to fear them.

I was half-asleep, probably because I was already in a dream. Jungkook's hand was still in mine.

...

"Y/N...Y/N... Can you hear me?"

When I heard those words--and the voice--I felt like the 9-year-old Y/N again, waking up to Mr. Im wrapping a thick blanket around me and shaking me gently.

I stirred a little, and Jungkook squeezed my hand gently. Mr. Im came.

"Mr. Im..." 9-year-old Y/N managed, weak from the cold.

"Gosh, that woman didn't even give me the decency to warn me about your condition." Mr. Im gritted his teeth in frustration. "Y/N, it's 10 in the evening, you're gonna end up frozen at this point. It's all right now, I've got you."

"Mr. Im..." Y/N said again, color slightly returning to her lips. "Remember that escape plan we talked about?" 

I remember Mr. Im looking at me hesitantly, but nodded along.

"Can we do it now?" She asked, hanging unto his coat for support.

I remember discussing an escape plan with Mr. Im. Slowly, we planned an emergency exit plan when the time came for me to run away. And now was the time. It was already so painful, I had to leave now, was what in my mind that day.

I sat up as Jungkook did too.

"Was that Mr. Im?" He asked.

I nodded. "Yes."

"He looks so much like--"

The heavy metal door sounded again, and I followed Jungkook as we ran after Mr. Im and myself.

As we reached the hallway once more, I heard faint sounds of laughter and music coming from the Grand Ballroom.

I gritted my teeth when I remembered the frustration and anger I felt. I was half frozen to death and here were my parents, laughing and dancing along with politicians and guests. Back then, I have always wondered what occasion they were celebrating. But now I know. It was the Winter Waltz, and my parents always celebrated it on December 25th, Christmas Day.

I despised the winter holidays. Always getting locked up in the fridge, the extreme cold I always felt, the day my parents died.

Once outside, snow had already started falling, and Mr. Im's minivan was parked across the front steps. I was finally gonna see his grandson.

Suddenly, I bumped into Jungkook, and we both almost toppled over the steps. He steadied us both, but I realized he was distracted.

"Jungkook, what's wrong?" I asked him.

"That...that grandson... He's..."

"He's what?" I asked, resisting the urge to take off my blindfold and look for the grandson.

"Hoseok hyung..." Jungkook finished. 

"What?" I asked.

Before we knew it, the minivan had sped off. We had missed it.

"Sorry," Jungkook said.

"It's fine," I said. "This can be the opportunity for us to find out what caused that accident."

"All right. Let's head back inside?"

I hesitated, not sure if I would be able to handle it, but nodded. "Sure."

On our way back, pattering footsteps echoed through the hallway. Jungkook stopped. "Y/N, wasn't your father part of the car accident?"

"Yeah, together with...with my mom." The words sounded weird, coming from my mouth. Yes, she was my mother, but only on paper. She was never a mom to me.

"He's heading to a room. Shouldn't we follow him?"

My instincts were screaming red flags at me, warning me that nothing good would come out of seeing their state right before the crash. But I needed to know. I gripped his hand tighter, and nodded. "Yes."

As we followed my father upstairs and to the room they shared, a waft of cologne made its' way to my nostrils, and it brought me nostalgia. "What's he doing, Jungkook?"

"Well, he's putting on a suit..." I couldn't see him, but I knew he was frowning. "A suit together with the symbol of the government."

I gasped. This was the vision I saw in Seokjin's room. But how did I see it beforehand? I shuffled my feet. It felt like it was starting to become a minefield for me.

"Where you going, honey?" A voice suddenly asked behind me, startling us a little. It was the same words I heard in that vision.

"I have to go. The government needs me." My father replied. There was another scent of sickening cologne as my mother walked past us.

"Probably won't be for a while right? You should go. I'll take care of Y/N."

"Yoonseomake sure she never gets out of that fridge." He warned, glaring at my mother.

"I think we both agree on that." Came the reply. 

Yoonseo... My eyes glazed over at that word. All this time, I never knew their names, and I never bothered to learn anything about them. 

My father scoffed and took a briefcase that was on the foot of the bed. "If she gets out, then we'll have no choice but to turn her over to the government. She's been under our protection for too long. Besides, the formula's almost complete. What's left now is the approvement of the president. We don't need her anymore. What good comes out of an Odd? Y/N would probably end up being more useful as gone."

I felt a pang of hurt and pain when I heard those words. I tried to compose myself, to stop further emotions from escaping, but it was too late. It was already in my head, imbedding itself permanently into my memories.

I pressed closer against Jungkook. The water...the water was rising.

"Y/N, focus, I got you," his voice, now muffled and distant, called out to me and I desperately reached for it. But I was already drowning.

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