This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Prologue (started April 1, 2015)
Stephanie slowly opened her eyes and in an instant she was slammed with the realization that she was on an airplane and no longer in Leeteuk’s arms or that the last twenty-four hours had occurred at all. After a moment of looking around she decided to curl back up into a ball and try to think of anything but Leeteuk; his strong arms and how it felt to be wrapped around her waist, his perfect smile that always played at his lips when he saw her or the way he made her heart fluttered without any effort. It was utterly impossible, she didn’t need to see it to know her heart had been ripped from her chest and now remained back in Seoul with the man who commanded her never to fall in love with Leeteuk in the first place. A soft tap on the shoulder made her jump out of her skin. Could it really be?? Was it all just a horrible dream she would awake from with the soft stuffed kangaroo she was given on her first birthday away from home?? Oh my gosh!? She couldn’t believe she had forgotten about whether she had Mr. Snuffles with her; however, before she could get a chance to look a young flight attendant with long blonde curls and a pleasant smile was just inches from her face.
“Are you okay?”
Without a moment’s hesitation Stephanie told her she was fine. It was a nice enough lie, but she was somewhat caught off-guard when the flight attendant looked at her as if she were from another planet. She held up her index finger to indicate she needed a moment and turned away. Stephanie took this time to check her blanket and seat for Mr. Snuffles. A worn light-brown stuffed kangaroo fell to the floor with a soft thud, immediately she picked it up and squeezed it tightly to her cheek. The smell of Leeteuk’s cologne still lingered which was the sweetest torture she could imagine. Several passengers were turned around in their seats staring or whispering behind raised hands but she didn’t care. Yes, she was twenty-three years old and yes, she was still in a somewhat risque maid’s outfit, wrapped in a wool blanket and holding a stuffed animal; but they didn’t know her and they definitely didn’t know what she had been through over the last year and a half of her life.
A young gentleman Stephanie could only assume was to be her translator followed the flight attendant til they made it to her seat. Before any introduction was made she held out her hand to shake theirs and quickly bowed her head.
“I apologize for the inconvenience, I do speak English,” she croaked, rubbing her throat in awe of how dry the drugs had made her throat.
The two flight attendants gave each other a quick glance and went into action, the young lady said she would be right back while the young man sat next to Stephanie and immediately took hold of her hand.
“Are you okay?”
As if her body could no longer contain the lie, hot tears of anger began spilling from her eyes. “No,” was all she could muster.
“Well Jenny’s went to go get you a glass of water, you’ve been asleep for almost the entire flight.”
“Where are we headed?!”
“We’re headed to Los Angeles.”
Even though she knew that she was headed back home it hit like a brick when it was said out loud. How could she have been so reckless, how could she have been made to leave without a single goodbye to anyone she knew. Not to Minah, who she knew took great joy in pressing her buttons as well as surprising her with kindness and sweets when Siwon and the others weren’t around, Donghae who played a significant role in Stephanie’s first, last and only true love; and Sarah, Donghae’s wife, the one person who befriended her no questions asked and their son who always made her laugh and who loved her cooking even when she burnt it. The other members of the Super Junior pack, especially Heechul and Shindong who risked their lives to help Siwon, Donghae and Leeteuk who saved her life and although she had only met a few of them once they would always hold a place in her heart because of the honesty and time they shared. Even Siwon; the one who had made her work off an unimaginable debt her former friend, Christy had amassed on a trip to Seoul that was supposed to last a month and turned into almost two years for Stephanie. But she also hated him for giving her enough time to fall under the spell of South Korea and everything she would miss about it then throwing her away as if she didn’t matter or get a say in it at all.
“No! No! No!”
“What, what’s wrong? Aren’t you curious about going to Los Angeles?”
“Look....,” she paused because she still didn’t know the young man’s name. “I’m from Los Angeles, and while yes I’m glad to be going home, I’m not ready yet. I had so much to do!”
“Sorry, name’s Daniel. Well what was so important?”
“Leeteuk, the debt I had to work off...”
“Leeteuk? Who’s Leeteuk?” Daniel sat back in the empty chair ready to listen to every detail, though at the moment Stephanie didn’t really know where to begin. She sighed heavily and instead of keeping quiet she said a quick and obvious remark sure to let him know she wouldn’t be ready to get into it.
“It’s an incredibly long story.”
Just then Jenny walked up with a steaming glass filled with hot water and lemon. Stephanie bowed her head and thanked her before blowing on the cup and taking a sip, the the hot water seemed to bring her throat to life and calm her nerves as well. She then paused and saw out of the corner of her eye that Jenny had taken the seat next to Daniel as if the two of them were waiting on her to faint or jump out of her seat.
“We’ve got at least six more hours of flight, and we could definitely listen to a good story.”
Jenny looked a little puzzled at her colleague’s remark but nonetheless curious.
“I wouldn’t know where to start.”
“How about why you’re wearing a maid’s outfit?” Jenny suggested with a whimsical smile.
“I-I...,” Stephanie looked down at the tight corseted black and white outfit she was wearing and pulled the satin black bow out of her hair, she sat there holding it in her hands while yet again her eyes filled with tears.
“How about you start from the beginning,” Daniel said wrapping his arm around her shoulder.
“Okay,” they all sat back, preparing themselves for the saga that was to come.
Nymeria: Really can't get enough of this story. It flows well, it captivates the reader from page 1, and throws you into such a well-written, well conceptualized world that you'll believe it's real. Everything in the book is meshed together really well. From character backgrounds to plot twists, you can t...
263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...
Flik: Hi! ^.^ huge fan of yours on ff.net! When I saw the note about this contest on The Way We Smile, I couldn't help but rush over here, create an account, and vote! XD Seriously love this story and would recommend it to anyone! :D best FT fanfiction out there. Amazing story, amazing concept that wa...
Lauren Suzmeyan-Raine: I'm so glad you found a place to post your stories. I was horrified when I saw yours had been taken down, they are definitely the best 'reading' stories I've ever read. And I've made it my business to read every one I can. Well done.Lauren
Alex Rushmer: This was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it a lot Malfoy was always one of the characters that I liked a lot, so I like that a lot of this happens between him and Colette. I read the first couple chapters, and I enjoyed your writing style and am excited to see where you take this story. My com...
FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"
Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."