Prologue

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To those who dreamed of living the life in Seoul, this one's for you. I hope, as you moved to the next page of this diary, you'll learn more, and realize more that this kpop/kdrama fantasy dreamed you've always dreamed of, is just an illusion, cause reality is harder.

When you stumble on life's stress, you easily give up.

Ganun naman talaga tayo, ayaw natin nahihirapan so we always choose the better route.

Ang gumive up and go with the flow.

Duwag na kung duwag

It's not unusual the world will hate you too, just because you are one of them.

We have to prepare ourselves.

You are warned.

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"Congrats, Janella!" bungad sa akin ng aking mga kamag-anak pagkatapak ko sa garden side ng bahay.

Kakauwi ko lang galing graduation at inasahan ko ang gaganaping party ni Mommy para sa akin, ngunit hindi ko inakalang iba pala ang tema ng party na ito. Gusto ko pa naman ng isang bahay na puno ng alcoholic drinks habang kasama ang mga kaklase ko. I'm already on my legal age and I badly want to experience other things in life!

Umiling na lang ako at napatawa na rin sa panggugulat nila. "Thank you!" nakangiti kong sabi.

Inilibot ko ang aking mga mata sa bawat bisitang imbitado. Most of them are wearing casual formal attire. Medyo disappointed ako since I was really expecting something daring and mature pero naging formal cocktail party ito.

Lesson learned. Kapag gusto mo talagang magka-party na pang-age mo mismo, never let your parents organize it.

Obviously, adult prefers conservative types. Well, medyo liberal si Daddy pero useless pa rin kasi under naman siya kay Mommy.

"Janella, congrats!" Nakuha ni Achi Louisse ang atensyon ko. Behind her is Ahia Ethan who's grinning from ear to ear. Achi pulled me into a hug and said, "College?" Tinaasan niya rin ako ng kilay pagkatapos.

I smirked and winked at her. I'm going to study at SoFa Design Institute. 'Yon talaga ang dream school ko, not because it's one of the most expensive schools in the Philippines, but because it's the best with regards to the course I want, Interior Designing.

Achi looked fiercely at me. "Make sure no boys allowed, ha! But you did great, Janella. I heard you graduated as valedictorian in your batch! I'm so proud of you!" I smiled.

"Congrats, little sis-in-law!" pabirong sinabi ni Ahia Ethan at saka hinatak si Achi Louisse sa kanyang tabi.

"Thank you, Ahia and Achi," I croaked.

I was immediately flooded with emotions. Hearing those words from my siblings-in-law feels so surreal. To be honest, I always feel lacking with regards to my standing, especially in my family.

Parang lagi kong iniisip na kulang ako kumpara sa achi at ditchi ko. I know I'm the smartest among the three of us, pero bakit gano'n? Parang hindi ako masaya? Kaya no'ng binati nila ako, parang iba ang feeling. Ang saya lang.

Napansin ni Achi ang kaunting luha sa gilid ng aking mga mata, kaya agad niyang tinapik si Ahia Ethan saka ngumuso sa akin. Hinarap ako ni Ahia at lumapit siya sabay punas ng aking mga namumuong luha sa mata.

I feel so blessed dahil siya ang nakatuluyan ni Achi. Sobrang sweet ni Ahia Ethan sa akin. I've always longed for an older brother. Masaya ang may older sister pero iba ang saya kapag may older brother. It makes you feel more secure at mayroon kang makakausap nang matino, hindi baliw tulad ng dalawa kong kapatid.

Ngumiti si Ahia Ethan. "Cheer up! It's your party!"

I laughed. I was surprised when Ditchi Jilliana suddenly came. "And a toast to my ugliest sister who just graduated!" She grinned while handing the two shot glasses she has.

Tumawa si Ahia Ethan at si Achi Louisse, at naki-shot na rin sa amin.

Inilibot ko ang mga mata ko para hanapin sina Mommy at Daddy. Gusto ko na kasing makuha ang graduation gift ko. Sabi nila kapag gr-um-aduate ako with honors, ibibigay raw nila 'yon. For some weird reasons, I sensed na ang daming tao ngayon. Mom and Dad's friends are here, too! Not only that, my friends, too!

"Auntie, sina Mommy?" I asked one of my aunties.

She smiled at me. "Wala pa sila. Sabi ng mom mo, mahuhuli raw sila dahil may gagawin pa sila. Ikaw naman kasi, ang tagal ng graduation mo!"

I looked fiercely on my Auntie secretly.

Duh? Kahit ako rin naman kanina nainip na rin, but I have no choice. Hindi namin hawak ang oras.

"Thank you," I politely excused myself from the crowd.

Sina Achi Louisse at Ditchi Jilliana ay nakaupo sa pool side. They're really loud lalo na si Ditchi. Achi seems really wasted because of drinking too much habang si Ahia ay nagbabantay kay Achi. Si Ditchi naman, she's dead for sure kapag naabutan siya nina Mommy. Ditchi is uncontrollable. That's why she really deserves the nickname, "Untamable Althea."

The song playing from the speakers stopped. It was replaced with chatters from the guests that also quickly faded. Nagtaka tuloy ako sa biglang pagtahimik nila.

"Magpaputok na ng fireworks!" my mom excitedly said.

I followed her voice and saw her on the middle. She was waving at me, si Daddy naman ay nakatayo sa gilid niya habang hawak ang baywang ni Mommy. She mouthed "Congrats!" on me at ngumuso paitaas na para bang sinasabing tumingin ako sa itaas.

Everyone was truly excited. Ditchi lead the countdown and everyone followed her.

Napatingin ako sa kalangitan. I stared at the night sky in awe habang nagpapalitan ang iba't ibang makikintab na kulay. It was mesmerizing that I couldn't even look away!

I was surprised when Achi and Ditchi touched my shoulder. They excitedly mumbled something but I couldn't understand it since the fireworks is too loud.

Kumunot ang noo ko at inalis ko ang mga mata sa langit. Tiningnan ko ang buong lugar para makita ang pinagkakaguluhan nila. Hinarap ko rin sina Achi at Ditchi at sabay nilang itinuro ang nasa harapan ko.

Nagulat ako nang makita ko sina Mommy at Daddy na papalapit sa harapan ko. My mom and mad were smiling softly at me.

"Mommy!" I excitedly said.

Nilapitan ko silang dalawa upang yumakap. My mom smirked at my dad. Medyo naguluhan ako but Dad nod his head and looked at me.

May kinuha si Mommy sa kanyang likuran at saka ngumiti sa akin. "Congrats, baby!" aniya.

Ipinakita niya ang hawak niyang envelope at nahihiyang kinuha ko naman ito. My heart pounded fast because of extreme excitement of knowing what's inside the envelope.

Nang tuluyan ko nang mabuksan ang envelope, I gasped because it was a plane ticket!

I looked at my mom and dad. I saw how wide their smile is and they nod their head as a sign of assurance na totoo ang nabasa ko. Achi and Ditchi looked so happy, too, kaso si Ditchi ay may kasamang irap at hawi ng buhok. I ignored it.

Muli kong binalingan ang sobreng hawak ko nang may kaba at excitement.

Finally, this is it!

It's a ticket to Seoul and it's dated three days from now!

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