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I’m willing to accept all punishments and to be cursed in all the lives I will live after this one, but please let me stay with Tae Won a little bit more.

The messages are frequent, sometimes they’re just the usual Jane Annyeong, and sometimes they are photos and videos of Tae Won and me.

And now what I’m dreading is finally occurring:


These messages aren’t from one of Soo Ae’s fans. I know it now; it’s personal. Someone wants to get me.

When alone, I’m paranoid. I turn my head so often when walking down the street that I got torticollis a few days ago. Every stare which lingers upon me sends shivers up my spine. Only Tae Won’s presence calms my nerves.

For once, I’m happy to be a drifter, I’m scared, but my mind manages to abstract itself from the situation as I solely try to focus on Tae Won.

The thought of him appeases me; it works better than the sleeping pills I’ve taken. Tae Won is like the oxygen he transferred to me when he kissed me under the water; he fills me with life.

Tae Won has tutored me more than my father’s money worth; he’s teaching me, love. Like I say, it’s a vague notion for me. I’ve never felt so much in my life.

Younger, I looked for thrills in useless things, I tried to fill the emptiness, and I hopped from one thing to another. I know now the alchol, the drugs weren’t me trying to be cool. I searched for something to plaster the void, but everything I tried failed. Every experience left me dry, thirstier for something more tangible.

What I’m living with Tae Won is palpable. It has a shade, it's stable, and I don’t want to lose it now that I’ve found it.

It’s selfish, and what I’m doing is despicable, but I can’t let go of Tae Won. Even now that my secret is close to being revealed, I prefer taking the risk because I’m the type of person who doesn’t think of the collatéral damage. I don’t calculate the phase; supposing ahead is beyond me. This capacity of the mine is both a gift and a curse because I don’t envision the danger as I should.

Fright should be all I feel, and It’s there, but I’ve been in this state for the last five years. The anxiety and fear are part of my life already. A little more or less doesn’t change a thing, but Tae Won is in the balance.

I’m not eating. I try, but I can’t manage to keep the food.

I hope no one notices.

Since I spend a lot of time with Tae Won, it’s with him I have to be the most cautious. He’d go crazy if he knew I wasn’t eating,

Tae Won seems to stress too; he has started to train again. He told me that reaching the level he once had was impossible, and with his age, Tae Won can’t hope for a big career, but he wants to be there in the memory of his parents. He wants them to see that all the sacrifices they made weren’t in vain.

It’s admirable; everything Tae Won does is.

Tae Won has overcome so much.

“I’m here.”

The person’s breath fans my ear as the whisper travels down my lobe.

I jolt from my chair, almost falling on the boy sitting behind me while Mona laughs uncontrollably.

“Oh, my gosh, Jane, that was so funny.

“Mona, how could you?”

Mona doesn’t answer; instead, she searches her bag and gives me a tissue.

“What is this for?

“You’re crying.”

Great, I’m so out of it that I didn’t even realize. I wipe the tears which don’t seem to want to stop.

I’m more of a mess that I admit, and I’m pretending because I have to. I can’t be miserable in front of everyone, and I don’t want pity.

Right now, I’m angry at Mona because she knows what is happening to me. Mona’s childish prank almost killed me as I wasn’t expecting to see her. I haven’t seen her in weeks. Brad and Mona appear to be very occupied.

Mona has this critical project she’s working on, and Brad is avoiding me.

I wonder if he knows about Tae Won?

If the information has got to him, he’s probably stabbing a voodoo doll of me.

“How’s your movie project going?”

“Great, I’ve never worked on something like this; it’s so emotionally gripping.”

Mona stops as she probably sees my bewildered facial expression. God didn’t bless me with a refined artistic perception. Mona could describe her project to me all day. I still wouldn’t get its essence, but I try to keep up, knowing what it means to her.

“It’s a movie, right?”

“No, a short, Jane, you really don’t look well, is everything okay?”

Mona doesn’t know Pandora’s box; she opens as more tears flow down my face.

“Hey, Jane, I was expecting to see you shining and overflowing in love.”

“I’m more than overflowing; I’m drowning, Mona, I’m scared every day I sink further in this relationship, and I’ve come to the point where I can’t let go.”

“Jane, I know you are not going to like this, but it’s bailout time. You can’t carry on with this is torture for both of you. Your relationship with Tae Won, no matter how fulfilling, has to stop.”


“Jane, I’m not trying to hurt you, but put yourself in Tae Won’s shoes.”

Mona leans over.

“You killed his family, and you’re all mink next to him, doesn’t bother You?”

My gaze remains fixed on Mona, who pursues.

“Can you imagine the poor boy is basically sleeping with the enemy?”

“Mona, I thoughtㅡ.”

“You thought what, that I didn’t have my own opinion on the matter, and you had all my blessings? I’m on your side Jane, but I don’t have to say Amen to everything you do.”

Before I know it, I’m standing and ready to leave.

“Jane, come on, sit down, listen. I just think it’s unfair for Tae Won because he’s in the dark and unjust for you. After all, you can not be at peace. You can’t say you love each other with all these secrets between you. And I’m telling you this because I care. You can’t just get up and leave when our opinions differ.”

“I’m sorry, Mona, you’re right the stalker is blackmailing me into telling Tae Won.”

“Oh, Jane, you should really go to the police now.”

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