08. fools

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[ PARK SOOJUNG ]

Happiness cannot be granted
until you are patient enough to
be rewarded with it.

Everything seemed to have gotten better when I was hospitalized for a few days. The doctor had told me that the petals would come back anytime soon, and my lungs would be able to recover within a few days of getting out of the hospital. Although, I was hoping to get answers about who my soulmate was, if he was near my presence.. and if that was why I was getting weaker and weaker. But all I knew was that he was near, and that I probably know him, it's just my job to find out who he is so that I can move on with my life, peacefully.

And that starts today. 

I step into the hallway, pushing the doors as I began to walk towards my first class at 9 AM. As I take a seat in my classroom, my eyes absentmindedly search for Taehyung as they fall upon the empty seat. I furrow my eyebrows in confusion as I turn towards the blackboard when the teacher began the lesson. 

When class had finished, I immediately pull out my phone and scroll through my contacts to find Taehyung's number. As I text him a message, I feel a few petals settle in my lungs. I sigh with relief, they're back, as long as they're back, I'll be able to survive.

why weren't you in class today?
sent: 11:03 AM

if you need my notes, i can give them to you.
sent: 11:04 AM

yah, are you sick? 
sent: 11:05 AM

I shove my phone back into my pocket, only to feel it vibrate. I groan lazily as I pull it out and unlock my phone to read Taehyung's text. I could only smile at his reply.

i'm not really feeling good today.
please do send me notes! are you
sad that you weren't able to see me
the day you got released from the
hospital? i know you miss me~
sent: 11:06 AM

is the kim taehyung actually
worried about his studies? wow
i am shook and surprised.
sent: 11:07 AM

seriously, did you miss me?
because i miss you.
sent: 11:08 AM

I shake my head, smiling to myself as I decide to leave him hanging while shoving my phone back into my pocket. As I made my way down the hallway, a voice shouts out from behind me and I turn around to see an unfamiliar guy standing at the other end.

"You dropped something!"

I glance down to see my pencil case on the floor, and I quickly bend down to pick it up, only to have my hand brush against another. I retreat my hand as I look up at the guy who called out to me. He had nice eyes, eyes that formed into crescents whenever he smiled. 

"T-Thanks."

"Ah, it's no problem. How come I've never seen you around here? Are you new?"

"I could say the same thing for you. I've been a student here since freshman year. You seem like the one that's new out of the two of us."

"Maybe that explains it. I started studying here last year."

"Oh, well, it looks like you're liking it here, glad you do. Look, I have to get to my next class, I'll see you around?"

As I began to turn around and walk down the hallway, he grabs my wrist and I turn over my shoulder to see him still smiling at me. I raise an eyebrow questioningly as he lets go of my wrist.

"Can I possibly get your name?"

"Soojung. Park Soojung."

And just as I left him while bidding a farewell, I arrived at my next class only to realize that I never got his name. And just like that, another rose petal settles within my lungs.

  ➵ ➵➵

"Hello, is Taehyung home?"

His mother glances at me and flashes a bright smile, nodding her head as she opens the door for me to enter into their humble abode. She grabs a cup of tea and hands it over towards me, and I gladly take it from her, taking a sip.

"He's doing alright, just feeling a bit sick. Are you.. Soojung, perhaps?"

"Oh, yes, I'm Soojung. I just wanted to drop off some class notes that he missed today, and maybe go over them with him so he can catch up for tomorrow."

"Oh, sweetheart, you are free to head up to his room to help him out. However, I don't think he'll be able to go to class for the rest of the week. He's really feeling a bit off."

I frown, thanking her before I slowly head up towards his room. As I am faced with a door that has a DO NOT ENTER sign, I knock on it gently only to hear him say 'come in!'. Just as I enter into his room, I see him sitting on the bed, messing around with his night lamp. He was still in his pajamas, his hair was messy and his lips were dry, almost similar to how I looked when I was in the hospital. I quickly run towards him, fixing the night lamp, and his eyes widen at my presence.

"Are you surprised that I'm here?"

"What are you doing here? Not to be rude, but why?"

"I wanted to drop off the notes you missed, and also explain them, because it was such an intense lesson today."

"I don't think it's a good idea for you to be hereyou came here to give me class notes?"

"Yeah, I don't want you coming to class confused and all."

He smiles, before taking them from me and looking over them. I watch closely as he licks his dry lips, and his mop of messy hair blocking his eyes just a tad bit. I reach out and brush his hair to the side as he flinches at my touch, looking at me with wide eyes.

"S-Sorry, your hair was just in your way of sight."

"O-Oh, yeah, sorry, you scared me there."

 "Are you sure you're okay?"

"I'm more than okay, Soojung, don't worry about me. I just had a high fever this morning, but it's all settled down."

"Is it because of Seolhyun? Is she the one who caused all of this? Are you sure your lungs aren't declining just like mine a few weeks ago?"

He places his hand on mine, and he looks into my eyes before grabbing my hand and placing it on his cheek. He shakes his head in reply as I feel myself getting lost in his trance.

"It's got nothing to do with Seolhyun, trust me. I'm just sick, I went to the doctor today and he said it was just the change of weather that I wasn't used to.. resulting in my high fever. Anyways, I've been there.. done that, and I'm probably never gonna deal with that or her ever again."

"Are you sure?"

He nods his head again, his eyes still on me. 

"I'm more than sure."

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