“Annyeohaseyo, Lee, seongsaengim.”
“Anneyeohaeyo Kyeong Sonmi ssi.”
“Ya, are you sure she’s Lee seonsaengnim’s daughter?” One of the first-years watched the scene where mother and daughter crossed each other as two strangers said.
Eun Young’s gaze followed as she added, “I share my room with her; Sonmi doesn’t call her mother. She usually speaks to her father and goes home to see him.”
“That’s odd, didn’t the professor’s husband divorce her for a younger woman? How can his daughter be close to him?”
“Easy for you to say, ask the 4th years, the woman is living evil, it must be hell to live with her. Sssh, she’s coming.”
The girls hushed on the gossiping as Sonmi approached, but the girl stopped once again to greet someone else.
“Chae Seonbae, annyeong,” Sonmi said while she tucked a strand of hair behind her ear.
Ji-Seong’s eyes traveled further down the hall where Sa-rang turned, and it was only when she was no longer in sight that he returned his focus to Sonmi, “oh, Kyeong Ssi, annyeong.”
The rest of Sa-rang’s rotation arrived, “Chae Ssi, you could at least wait for us,” Soo-Hae said, tapping on his shoulder before looking at Sonmi.
“Hi,” Soo-Hae said casually to Sonmi, who examined her up and down.
Soo Hae was shorter and mastered her style, low boots, tights, mini jean skirt, white sweater, and beige duffle coat. She looked cute with her huge round-framed glasses. Also, Soo-Hae looked young, too young, making the freshman feel old.
Ji-Seong was stuck; he looked at the end of the hallway in despair. It was too late; there was nothing left to do but talk.
“So you are Lee seongsaeng’s daughter,” Soo-Hae asked with a wide grin.
Soo-Hae grasped Sonmi’s hands, “pudi, please, put in a word for me, tell your mother she has my undying devotion.”
“Aish, tchin-aish, don’t listen to my sister. She is a weirdo,” Gong-Won said as he grabbed Soo-Hae by her coat’s hood.
“Oppa, let go.”
“Why are you always like this, Soo-Hae? Don’t you have an ounce of pride or dignity?”
“Oppa, you whipped up all the pride at birth, and to be honest, I prefer having a recommendation from Lee Seongsaeng than any biased pride.”
Gong-Won lifted his eyes to the ceiling, “ah, can’t wait for this day to end. I don’t know what car to take to go to the Hexagone, Ji-Seong will you be there?”
“Ah, yeah, probably.”
They didn’t get along, but both of them preferred keeping the other close in check.
“Don’t mind my brother; he’s an excessive show-off,” Soo-Hae whispered to Sonmi.
Gong Won shook Soo Hae’s hood making the girl sway, “shut up, how can I have a sister like you? You have no respect for the elders.”
Soo Hae looked up at her brother, “well, it would be easier if the elder respected himself and played the part.”
“Chugulaé, you want to die?” Gong-Won said with piercing dagger eyes.
“Can you guys stop? We better hurry; otherwise, Lee Seongsaeng will have us for night watch the forensics office again,” Dae Jung said, shuddering.
“See you, Kyeong Sonmi ssi,” Soo-Hae said before running behind her brothers and Dae-Jung’s steps.
“Eh, see you, Kyeong ssi,” Ji-Seong said in an awkward stance before following the rest of the Lee Seongsaeng rookie squad.
Sonmi walked to where the group of gossip girls welcomed her like a long-lost friend.
“Sonmi, you know the Nam siblings?”
“And Chae seonbae?”
“What did they say?”
The girls bombarded her with questions; Sonmi felt overwhelmed by the attention. She smiled and answered the inquiry under other jealous eyes.
“Oh, Nam Gong-Won is so charming. Did you see what he was wearing? I’m dying?” Cho Sae-Ha exclaimed while grasping her folder as she entered the classroom.
“Did they tell you where they are going tonight by any chance?” Ha-Na Sonmi’s other roommate asked.
“They said something about L’hexagone.”
Eun-Young clapped in her hands, “let’s go.”
“Are you crazy? We will never get in,” Sae-Ha said in despair.
“Don’t worry, I dated a bouncer who works there a while back; he’s gullible, he’ll let us in.”
Sonmi turned and started taking out her notebook as the conversation didn’t concern her anymore.
“Sonmi, do you want to join us?”
“Me,” Sonmi said, pointing at herself.
“Of course you, do you see another Sonmi here? You are the only one to whom the seonbaes have spoken; you need to be there to introduce us. Sae-Ha likes Nam Gong-Won seonbae, and Hana has a massive crush on Chae seonbae.
“Stop it,” Eun-Young, you are making us sound desperate.”
“But you are, so what’s the problem?” Eun-Young said, making the girls laugh and forcing the teacher to scold them.
“Kyeong ssi, it’s not because your mother is a professor that it gives you the privilege to disturb my class.”
Even the teachers had animosity towards Lee seongsaeng’s daughter.
“Sorry,” Sonmi apologized as her phone beeped on the table. She looked at her screen:
Eun Young has added you to the OPPA MISSION chatroom.
For the first time since Sonmi entered medical school, she felt like she had finally made a place for herself. She turned to smile at Eun-Young, who sat a row behind her.
Eun-Young returned the smile while clutching her fist in the fighting sign of support.