“Why are you calling me? I have nothing to say to you-”
“Well, I still have plenty to say to you...Rose, your crying aren’t you?” I said to her as I laid myself on the mattress.
“It’s none of your business-”
“It is my business if your gonna start working in this company.”
Raising my voice, I stared up at the ceiling as I took a deep breath. My anxiety seemed to have faded away already but I still had so much anger built up inside me...
“Huh? What are you talking about-”
“Don’t play dumb, Jin told me everything. And I don’t want you to even think about coming to Korea again, I already told you that I didn’t want you working-”
“Well I don’t care what you have to say, Jin offered me the job and I’m taking it! I’m so tired of arguing with people! If it’s not you then it’s my sister! You both are making me feel horrible for wanting to follow my dream and I can’t handle it! I haven’t even started and I’m already dealing with so much shit!”
She cried out in frustration, I had no idea that her sister was making her feel this bad. But I need to explain the reasons behind my words as to why I don’t want her coming...
“Listen...I’m sorry that you’re dealing with your family-”
“Stop apologizing already! I know you don’t mean it-”
“I do mean it! Do you think I like seeing or hearing you cry? I feel at fault for it, especially after what I did to you in America. Even now...I’m already worried about you.... because I don’t know if you’ll be okay... because of me.”
I’m sure what I’m saying isn’t making sense, but if I tell her the full ugly truth of what she might go through, will she even believe me? She already doesn’t like me so...
“What are you even talking about?”
She asked sounding confused, I then quickly sat back up on my bed and stared out through my window to see the horizon city of Seoul.
“Jin told me that you don’t use social media...is that true?”
I asked her while gripping my phone close to my ear, it’s so frustrating talking to her this way. I would much rather just speak to her in person. But I highly doubt she would want to see me again...
“Yeah... I don’t know how Jin knew...but...I rarely use the internet. I only use it to look up makeup tutorials and what makeup brands are coming out, wait! Why are you even asking about that?” She questions me as her voice sounded a bit worried.
“I think it’s best that you don’t use social media then. I just hate, that...I know that probably won’t be enough to protect you-”
“Kai, what the hell are you saying? Protect me from what? What’s going on!?”
She was beginning to sound panicked and that was the last thing I wanted her to feel. But how am I suppose to word everything for her to understand? I don’t know why I feel so invested in trying to warn her. Is it because I feel sorry for what I did to her? No, we both already apologized...so why do I feel the will of wanting to just protect her? As I thought carefully of what to say, I ruffled my hair in annoyance...
“Rose...no matter what I say. I know you’re probably gonna end up doing whatever you want, Jin was right...I don’t have the right to take away your dream. But I only denied you because I thought it was the right thing to do, you have no experience in what the outside world could do to you. You’ve lived in a small town your whole life, so I know you’re a private person. I fear...that if you come to work in this company, you won’t be able to handle it well. I don’t doubt your artistic skills in makeup, no...I stress over the fact of the brutal harshness you’ll have to endure working for ExEx Idol. The amount of past female staff that had quit is ridiculous...but I don’t blame them for leaving. So if you decide to come to Korea again...don’t say I didn’t warn you. Jin says that you’re a strong woman, I would like to believe him. But in these hours of meeting you, talking to you...I’m not sure if his words are true. Rose...be safe if you come back-”
“Okay you’re being very dramatic, it’s just a job of me doing makeup. I don’t know why you’re making it sound more than what it is, look...I appreciate your concerns. But I’ll be fine, besides...I’m gonna be Jin’s makeup artist, not yours...and from what my sister had told me, you’re the most favored one in the group so I’ll be fine. Listen, I...I have to go, okay...”
Her response felt rushed and I’m sure it was because she didn’t wanna listen to what I had to say anymore. Maybe my words came off as frightening? I hope that wasn’t the case, but despite her wanting to get off the phone. I can’t help but want to keep talking to her, what excuse can I come up with? Oh!
“Wait! Before you hang up...I...I just wanna say thank you. When you wrapped your scarf around me, I appreciate it...I’ll make sure to give it back to you.”
I quickly said as I got off the bed, making my way towards the window I placed my hand on the glass and looked up at the sky.
“Oh! Y...yeah, it was no trouble...I would tell you goodnight. But I’m sure it’s already morning over there...”
She said sounding a bit flustered, her voice seemed to have gone back to normal and it brought me a sense of relief knowing that she was no longer crying.
This is so uncool of me, I highly doubt Rose knows anything of who I am and only sees the image I show to the world. But from what she has seen in person, I’m certain I come across as stuck up and just rude. Maybe she sees me as some celebrity snob? No, I shouldn’t care what she thinks of me, I’ve already said my peace on the matter and that should be enough, right?
“Uhh..yeah...umm...I guess I’ll see you soon... goodbye, Rose.” I said with hesitation as I waited for her to hang up first.
Once the call ended, I placed my forehead on the glass and looked down on my phone. I’m glad I at least know her number, that way I could check up on her. However, I’m still fairly angry at Jin for asking Rose to come work here. Walking towards the bathroom, I prepared to take a shower. It was still early in the morning and I had planned on ordering some flowers for my mother’s grave, but since manager Sang forbid me from leaving...
“Fuck that shit...”
I said to myself in laughter, there’s no way in hell I’m missing my mother’s birthday. I don’t give a fuck what manager Sang has to say, I’m going no matter what! After the argument I had with him yesterday day, I’m pretty sure he’ll have security keeping an eye on me. But I still won’t let that stop me, I won’t submit to those who try and control my life...
Once I was out of the shower, I quickly hurried in getting changed before leaving the dorm. I need to head to that flower shop I always go to, even though it’s only a few miles away from where I live. I need to hurry in getting there before Sang notices me gone. So as I rushed myself in opening the door, my eyes caught Jin and Zack who were waiting outside my door! Just what the hell do they want now?
“I’m not in the mood to speak to you guys, I have something important to do-”
“It’s your mother’s birthday this week, is in it?”
As I tried to walk away from the both of them, Jin’s words made me stop in my tracks. Bringing my hands to a tight fist, I turned myself back around and saw Zack approaching me while Jin remained quiet while leaning against the wall.
“Kai, our manager told us what happened. And honestly...I’m really mad at you. Because we had to cancel two major events that were coming up for us. But...I’m even more upset at him for not permitting you to go see your mother. And that just doesn’t sit right with me!” Zack said with pure disgust as he placed his hand on my shoulder.
“Listen, Kai...we’ve known you for years. And every year you have gone to see your mother, but it’s gonna be difficult to visit her this time. But Zack and I are willing to help you...” As Jin spoke he began to walk towards the elevator.
“And why would you go out of your way to do that for me?”
I asked specifically towards Jin, however, Zack was quick in answering as he pulled me along towards the opened elevator doors.
“Isn’t it obvious why? We’re practically brothers. Come on, let’s get going! I’ve advised an awesome plan in my brain and it should work!”
Once Zack began to go over the plan with Jin and me, it was hard not to laugh. It all sounds easier said than done, but I guess Zack decided to distract the front security of the building. Jin had already called a cab prior so he plans on having us make a run for it through our many fans waiting outside! Which it all sounds reckless and just stupid, but it’s not like I had any brighter idea. So as I agreed to this foolish idea of theirs, we all put our face masks on and prepared ourselves!
So once the elevator doors opened, Zack didn’t waste any time running towards our bodyguards along with the rest of security that was just staring at him like a mad man! He began to sing one of our popular songs as he ran around the floor. With security starting to chase after him, Zack sprinted as quickly as he could! I never wanted to laugh so badly before, but Jin rushed in grabbing my arm as he rushed us towards the front doors of the building! Everything happened so fast that I wasn’t even sure who was calling out my name!? Looking around my surroundings, I saw nothing but people holding posters and screaming at the top of their lungs as they ran towards Jin and me!
“KAI! I LOVE YOU!”
“KAI! YOU’RE NOT DATING THAT GIRL ONLINE, RIGHT!? KAI DON’T LEAVE!”
As Jin and I entered the car, the cab driver quickly hurried in driving us away! The crazy thing was that when I turned my head back to look out the window, I saw many of our fans already chasing after us. But within a few minutes, they were out of sight once Jin told the cab driver where to go. I wasn’t surprised that Jin knew which flower shop it was since I’ve told him in the past.
Jin suddenly apologized as he leaned his head back. Looking over at him, I noticed that his upper lip was slightly swollen once I saw him remove his face mask...
I didn’t think I punched him that hard? But when I checked my face this morning, there was only a light bruise on my lower jawline. Which should go away within a few days, I don’t remember when was the last time Jin and I fought like that. I think it was when we were all still training in the beginning before we debuted, those were tough years for us...
“I’m sorry too...how’s your lip?” I asked while averting my eyes back towards the window.
“It’s fine, you hit like a girl so I didn’t feel anything- tch!”
I immediately punched him in the arm until I heard him let out a painful grunt. We both took a pause looking at each other until we laughed, but that came to an end once Jin pulled out his phone that was going off!
And as he went to answer it, the cab had pulled over to the flower shop. Giving Jin the gesture that I was heading out first, he stayed in the cab to talk on the phone. It was fortunate enough that there weren’t many people out in public. In fact, even entering the shop it didn’t look like there was anyone around. Adjusting my hat more securely, I made sure my eyes were almost covered by it. Fixing my face mask more firmly, I asked the lady at the front desk to prepare me a bouquet of daisies since they were my mother’s favorite type of flower. This shop is where my Dad used to bring me when I was much younger. He would always buy daisies for my mother whenever he could. Once I was done paying, I rushed myself in getting back in the car. Though I saw that Jin was already done talking on the phone...
“So who called?”
I asked Jin while giving the cab driver the next destination of where to go.
“That was our manager, he’s pissed. Zack is currently doing some intense workouts as punishment. And he said when we come back we’re gonna have to clean the gym and the cafeteria...”
As he finished explaining, I was already dreading the lecture Sang was gonna give us. I would much rather have him smack me across the face again...
“Whatever....our manager is annoying-”
“You know he’s only strict when we mess up. This isn’t the first time he’s yelled at us, manager Sang has done a lot for us-.”
“Don’t you think I know that? I’m fully aware he’s keeping an eye on us. But you would think he wouldn’t be so controlling with our lives. I get it when some things should be kept private, but...”
“I understand...it can be very overwhelming. Is that why you were against MelRose working in this company?”
“I already told you why. I know that she’s coming here whether I like it or not. Jin, if anyone finds out who she is-”
“They won’t, I already said I’ll take responsibility for her. I spoke with our manager this morning, and I told him I wanted Melrose to be my new makeup artist. He was against it at first, but after a while, he gave me the okay. All there’s left to do is send her the paperwork and have her move to Korea. The process should take no less than a week, It’s gonna be a big change for her...”
I didn’t have anything else to say about the matter since I already spoke my concerns about it, but it always aggravates me whenever I hear Jin saying he’ll take responsibility for her. The car ride grew quiet after that until we reached the cemetery. Stepping out of the car, I walked towards my mother’s grave and placed the bouquet next to her. Taking a moment to myself, I admired the beautiful sunset beginning to come down.
“Hey, mom...I miss you. I’m sorry but...I had to come a bit earlier this year to see you. Things have been a little difficult for me these last few months, I remember you telling me when I was much younger to never make a girl cry...but, I’ve already broke that so many times now and I don’t know how to fix it. Whenever I see her, I grow anxious...even when I speak to her, my chest tightens...at first I thought that maybe it was my health taking a toll on me. But I’ve come to find out that isn’t the case. I wish you were here so you could tell me what this feeling is. Though I’m sure you would end up saying that I need to figure it out on my own. Has Dad come to see you yet? I haven’t heard from him in a while, we don’t usually talk anymore. Mom, I need your strength right now... because I’m beginning to run out of my own. I know I say this every year, but I wish I could’ve done something back then... because then maybe you’ll still be alive. And I’m sure Dad is still hurting over it... he never stopped blaming himself for what happened. So I’ma try my best to smile more, I need to...”
As I finished speaking, I kissed my fingertips and placed them on top of her plaque before heading back to the car. But as I got closer to the vehicle, I felt my phone vibrate. So as I went to answer it, I was surprised to see that it was a text message from Rose!
“Hey Kai, please take care of my necklace. I’m trusting you with it, okay.”
Placing my fingers against the heart locket, I couldn’t help but grin. At least she trusts me with something important of hers. As I prepared to text back, I stopped myself from sending the text as I read over it!
“No! That’s a cheesy thing to say!”
I said to myself as I felt my cheeks growing blush! I can’t tell her that I’ll take care of her heart, that sounds creepy. I’ll just keep it simple...
“Don’t worry, I will.”
Pressing send, I let out a nervous sigh as I entered the car. Again, why is my heart beating so fast?!
“Hey, are you okay?” Jin suddenly asked in concern as he places his hand on top of my shoulder.
“Yeah, everything’s fine...”
I responded while avoiding making eye contact with him. With the cab driver taking us back to the dorms, here I thought that the these next few days would be rough for me. But that all changed once Rose and I kept texting back and forth to each other...