CHAPTER 2 : Doubts

“What exactly happened? Did you see her?”

“She called me with a number I didn’t recognise. She said she was sorry and wanted to see me.”

“How do you feel?”

“How do I feel? Are you kidding me or what? I want to hurt her so that she feels how I feel, how I have felt all these years.”

“Beyond what you would like to do to her. How do you feel, Jae? What’s going on inside of

you?”

“I feel like I did ten years ago. I feel abandoned again. I feel like my heart will stop beating again. I am so angry, I am angry at the whole world. I feel like I swallowed a volcano, I burn with hatred. She meant everything to me. We were so good together. I thought we were connected beyond love. She meant everything to me. But you already know that.”

“Jaebeom, listen to me” said Jow-han, putting his hand on his shoulder. « Pull yourself together, remember how many times we talked about this moment. I know how disturbing it must have been for you to hear her voice. But, take this opportunity. »

Seeing his best friend in a state of deep astonishment, Jow-Han decided to take him in his arms to comfort him better. He is also on the brink of tears, but he holds himself back. He had never seen Jaebeom so miserable before. He feels helpless in the face of a situation that is far beyond him. He feels like he’s not up to it, like he’s useless. He would like to do more, to do things differently. He would have preferred to have the words, the right ones; those that sooth and comfort. But he is also speechless. Kim has definitely struck hard. Jaebeom and Jow-Han are completely shocked. 

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“Jae, agree to see her.” said Jow, whispering in his ear, « I don’t think a conversation with her will hurt you any more than the state you’re in now. »

“I need to calm down, is that it? I need to be a badass again? I must force myself?! Is that your advice as a friend? That’s what you recommend?”

“Don’t start. Just because you’re miserable doesn’t mean you have to see evil everywhere. I advise you to go and see her, but I’m not forcing you to go. I just want you to get better and finally be able to move on. You haven’t been able to open up for years, you haven’t been yourself for years. So yes, I think seeing her will do you good. At least you’ll be able to get answers to your questions. You can’t ignore her now that she’s back. Don’t do it for her but for you: to get better. Choose Jaebeom, for yourself. Choose yourself for the first time…”

Jaebeom dries his tears, being motivated by Jow’s words, he hugs his friend tightly. He realises how lucky he is to have such a devoted friend as Jow-Han. He rejoices inwardly that he didn’t experience this evening alone.

“You always have the right words, even though you often doubt them. You have always been there for me and sometimes I think I don’t remind you often enough how much you mean to me. Anyway, you know what I mean. You’re the best…”

“Go to bed otherwise I will have to remind you every day that you have just made an obvious declaration of love to me.”

The next day, 14:00.

I wake up with difficulty. To be honest, I don’t feel like getting out of bed. I already know what awaits me and I have an anxious life to escape. I feel guilty for making my best friend live through last night. I feel ashamed that I reacted so badly. Everything is mixed up in my head. I’m not ready to let go of my anger that easily. It’s sad to say but when you live with an emotion for a long time, you get attached to it. I’m used to being angry and over time it has warmed my heart which has become cold. With time, I managed to accept it and even love it. I wonder, is she my true love? She never left me, she… And if she ever died, who would replace her? Who would know how to set my soul on fire? And if I give in to this coffee, what emptiness would I leave behind? I am afraid. You always know what you lose, but never what you gain. I am afraid! I feel so immature, I feel like a poor ignored boy crying in his corner but nobody cares because they are convinced that the poor little boy is just whining. Who would take the place of my anger? Who would make my heart beat again if not rage? At what rate would my heart beat? Who would become the fuel I need to live? I have built a whole world around my irritability. Do I now have to deconstruct it all? Love has a name: hate. Passion is synonymous with outburst, restlessness and resentment. Once the storm has passed, what can I expect? All these questions, still unanswered. That’s all I can think about, all I can think about are questions. Enough talk. I jump out of bed, undress and go to the shower. There it is, water running over my body. This shower is the best I’ve ever taken, as refreshing as a cold summer rain. More seriously, what would you do if the person who abandoned you reemerged into your life? What would you do in my situation? Would you go to that café?

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I come out of the shower as desperate as when I went in. But I still feel calmer, more serene. After all, all I would have to do is listen to her talk. I hope her explanations will reason with me. I don’t even know what to wear. I haven’t shaved either. What about my hair, are we talking about it? There’s definitely nothing wrong with it today. Anyway, I’m going anyway. I’m putting on jeans, a jumper, trainers and my jacket. A hat over my head will do the trick. It’s already three o’clock. Less than an hour before the descent into hell, I imagine that yesterday was just a preview. I wish I could wake up Jow-Han but I know he’s been through a lot yesterday. I don’t have the courage to go alone but I know that I have to live this moment on my own.

I just hope, that he will be here when I return. I take my phone out of my pocket to tell her I’ll be there. « Good boy Jaebeom » I said to myself aloud.

Sender: +82 36 41 17 67

Time: 15:06

Hi, I’ll be there at 16:00. Don’t stand me up.

To: +82 75 05 13 73 

Time: 15:09

Don’t worry, Jaebeomi.

Sender: +82 36 41 17 67

Time:15:09

By the way, don’t call me that. Only those close to me have that right.

I put on my headphones and set off. I still think about Jow, I hope he’s OK and that he won’t be angry with me for leaving without saying anything. Sometimes I tell myself that I’m acting like Kim. I also tend to leave without saying anything. Abandoning people should be punishable by law. Of the five wounds of souls, this is probably the one I fear the most. To love and then be cast aside… She is a monster.

Who the fuck does that? “Pull yourself together Jae, everything will be fine.” I said to myself in a low voice. The worst thing is that it’s only my mother. What will happen the day another woman breaks my heart? This is the first question I don’t want to know the answer to. Here, the bus is here, I’m getting on it.

I’ve been sitting in the back of the bus for about 20 minutes now. The journey seems endless and through the window I rediscover a forgotten landscape. I haven’t taken public transport for ages. The bus is almost empty: without any noise, I feel good. It’s the perfect place to daydream and let go. I close my eyes with my head against the window. A slight draught is felt and gives me a feeling of freedom. I want to let myself go, to let myself be surprised. I concentrate on my breathing, the music helps me to relax. At last I have managed to calm my heart…

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