Here’s the third chapter. One more and it’s over.
Chapter Three – “I need you, amu maldo motae, I want you…”
Jan Di interlocked her fingers with Ji Hoo’s while the casket was being lowered. He turned to her and she could see in his eyes the grateful look that was usually in hers.
It was very little what she could do for him. She desperately wanted to do more.
After the funeral they had gone to the house. Joon Pyo, Jae Kyum, Woo Bin and Ga Eul had come too.
Jan Di had kept an eye on Ji Hoo. He looked calm, but she knew his heart was broken. He had lost his Grandfather for the second time in his life.
Jae Kyum offered to take Jan Di home when they were all leaving. She chose to stay.
She walked back into the house and found Ji Hoo sitting on the couch.
“Do you want me to take you home?” He looked exhausted.
“If you don’t mind, I will stay a while longer.”
“I’d like that.”
“I’ll make tea,” she said giving him a friendly pad on the hand. She must have done that at least a thousand times before. What was different about this time? At the touch of his warm skin her heart started racing very fast.
Her eyes met his. Hers were wide open in surprise; his were narrowed with confusion.
What was wrong with her?
Jan Di smiled awkwardly and hurried off to make the tea.
She needed to busy herself with something.
She was exhausted too. It had been a couple of very trying days. First, she had seen Goo Joong Pyo for the first time since his wedding. Not only that, she had seen him happy with Jae Kyum, her friend. And then, Grandfather’s heart attack… His time at the hospital… His death… It all had happened so fast that she had barely been able to process it.
At the time she only knew that she had to be strong for Ji Hoo.
He had been lost and heartbroken. She had been there for him. It was the least she could do after all he had done –and continued doing- for her. She was glad it was all over now.
Her eyes welled up unexpectedly. Tears were rolling down her cheeks before she was able to stop them.
This would not do. She had to get a grip on herself.
She left the tea things on the table and tried unsuccessfully to calm herself. When a sob escaped her lips she bit her fist. But there was no use. She was crying uncontrollably now. Her body was shaking; her face was drenched in tears.
She didn’t hear him come in. That was usually the case. Ji Hoo was always so quiet that he could easily sneak up on her. She only realized he was there when she felt his arms around her. Grateful, she held on to him as though her life depended on it and cried until she was out of tears.
He simply held her and stroke her hair until her tears stopped. He never rushed her. He never said a word. He didn’t even try to dry her tears like he had done in countless times before.
The last time he had tried to dry her tears was the day before Goo Joon Pyo’s wedding. She had brushed him off and told him it was because he kept drying her tears that they kept stupidly falling. He had never offered to dry her tears again. She now knew she had hurt him that day.
When it looked like she was done crying, Ji Hoo took her to the sitting room and went back to the kitchen to get the tea. He poured the tea in beautifully hand-painted porcelain cups and handed one to Jan Di. He then leaned on the couch, stretched his long legs and started sipping his tea in silence.
Jan Di was not sure how much time they had spent like this; sitting together without either saying a word.
That was something she had always loved about her relationship with Ji Hoo; they could sit comfortably together for hours, no words were needed.
She turned to look at Ji Hoo and saw that his eyes were closed. She could tell he was sleeping by the steady rhythm of his breathing. She was sure that was the first time he had slept since Grandfather collapsed at the clinic. It was too much for anyone, especially for a guy who, not so long ago, used to spend most of his time looking for a quiet place to take a nap.
She went to sit next to him and surveyed him for a long time. He had a peaceful expression on his face. A lock of hair was half covering his eyes. Jan Di didn’t realize her hand had moved until she saw herself brushing Ji Hoo’s hair off his face. He had a beautiful face; a face that was more beautiful than flowers…
Her hand went up again, this time to caress his cheek.
His hand came up too and covered hers at the same time his eyes opened. He looked at her questioningly, and before she could stop herself, she was leaning in to kiss him.
Just before their lips met, when he realized what she was about to do, his breath caught in his throat and he stared at her with eyes wide with shock.
The kiss was hesitant at first. Jan Di was not sure how he would take it. But soon his arms were around her, and, tilting his head, he deepened the kiss.
Jan Di knew he had been waiting for a long time for this, and he probably had already lost faith. She now understood she had been waiting for this too without even knowing.
She interlocked her fingers behind his neck as her body molded to his perfectly. She sighed with happiness.
Before she knew what was happening, he grabbed her arms and gently pushed her away from him. The next moment, he was standing across the room by the window.
Without his body next to her, Jan Di felt cold and deprived.
“I’m sorry,” she muttered, not fully convinced that she actually was.
He turned his back to her and gazed out the window.
“Why you did it?” he asked. “Because you feel sorry for me?”
“Sunbae! How could you say something like that?”
“I’ve wanted this to happen for a long time.” He put his hands in his pockets still looking out the window. “I’m sure you know.”
She knew. She had felt guilty many times for being unable to love him the way he wanted… And for not being able to let him go either.
He turned around and faced her.
“I need to now that you want this before we go any further.”
She opened her mouth to say she did, but he cut her off.
“Don’t answer now. Think about it first.”
She sighed and nodded.
“I’ll take you home.”
Read next chapter here.