School work with Woojin
Member: Park Woojin // Wanna One
Plot: When you’re set to be partners with the school’s quiet and charismatic dancer, how will you fair?
Word Count: 6633
“______, please work with Park Woojin.” A murmur ran through the lab, as students shot curious glances to one another. A few girls looked murderous, while some of the boys just shrugged it off. You stood there, fiddling with the Eevee Pokemon keychain on your bag, before letting your gaze flit to him. He had a stoic expression, his hand running through his dark brown bangs as he quietly whispered to one of his closest friends, Kim Donghyun. You sighed, before nodding to the teacher, and stood to leave as the bell rang.
Working with Woojin was going to be hard. He was adored by all the girls, regardless of the age. He was the dark, mysterious, and charismatic one from his goofy friend group. Boys wanted to imitate his powerful presence while girls cooed over how wickedly handsome he looked whenever the dance team performed at a school event. Even now, with it being casting season for the popular crews in the area, he was looked at as the prime candidate to join a nationally recognized group.
“_____?” You froze at the doorway, turning to meet his unwavering gaze. His voice was quiet, but it demanded attention at the same time. A few female classmates giggled as they purposefully brushed by him to leave for the buses or subways as the school day was coming to an end. “How are we going to separate the research paper?” You ring your hands awkwardly, trying to not meet his intense gaze. Donghyun popped up behind him, giving you an angelic smile as he bid the two of you a good day before leaving.
“It’s not really something we can divide easily from what I can see. We need to learn the same content to create this paper.” He nods slowly, absorbing the information, and you finally let your gaze admire his unique and sharp features. He was not from Seoul as the rest of you were; he had moved in from somewhere in Gyeongsang-do. You could tell from his dialect, although you still had no idea if it was Busan or Daegu that he had originated from.
“Then let’s go out.” The words caused you to cough furiously, your hands flying to cover your mouth. He gasped as he realized how wrong his words had come out, and ran a hand through his hair once more. “I meant let’s go somewhere to work on it… together.” You finally stop yourself from coughing, and nod your head slowly. Working with him should be easy. He was known to be naturally intelligent, which was not fair when he was already graced with his unbeatable talent in dance, endearing appearance, and ability to win everyone and anyone over.
“Do you want to go to the library sometime this week? We have about to finish this and submit electronically by Saturday night,” you inform him, and his brows furrow as he contemplated his schedule. You didn’t do anything special; you spent time at home to study and rarely went out. In fact, it was more embarrassing trying to grasp at some social connection to Woojin when he was so outstandingly admired in the school and you were almost three alternate universes behind. To say you were hated was wrong; you were known as a nice and quiet girl, but it took an uncomfortably long time for anyone but your childhood best friend to remember who you were when hearing your name.
“I have dance usually at night, and it’s kind of far from the library. I normally get off at the fourth stop from Bus 166.” He rubbed his bangs with his hands once more, biting his lower lip meekly. You avert your gaze and fixate on the paint that was peeling off behind him. The sound of students flooding out the school doors is fading, the last few casting curious glances at the sight of Park Woojin with a girl.
“I actually get off of that stop too. It’s near my apartment.” He brightens momentarily, a flash of a childish smile on his face before it returns to his neutral mask. You sigh inwardly at how dreadfully long and awkward this paper would be.
“Are there any other scheduling conflicts you might have?” He thinks a bit more, a small silence once again between you two. He finally nods.
“I have a dance audition with the school team on Saturday night. I’m really sorry.” You smile a little, remembering how much you loved the sight of him dancing at school performances. Not that you would ever dream of saying it publicly, but Woojin was destined to be a star in the near future, and you could only imagine how many girls would swoon at the sight of him performing on TV or an important stage.
“It’s cool. We should just start a little earlier and work a little harder to make up for it then.” He looked distractedly apologetic, but seemed a little comforted at how coolly you were trying to brush it off. He opened the door a little wider for you to exit, and you wiggled through. His eyes glinted with amusement at how you blushed when your bag accidentally hit him, and the keychain fell off. He picked it up, brushing off the dust, and put it into your side pocket, before leading the way towards the bus stop near the school. You scrambled after him, heat radiating off of your cheeks. He was innocent. He did not mean to make you flustered, or feel like there were raging butterflies eating you alive, or that you could die of a heart attack.
“Oh shoot.” His quiet voice was laced with panic as he dug through his book bag. He looked at you with a meek smile, his own cheeks pinking considerably. You cock your head slightly, curious at his peculiar behavior. He cleared his throat a little, unable to meet your eyes. “I ran out of money on my bus card. Is it possible-”
“I got it, don’t worry.” You say quietly. You wanted to pinch your forearm to see if you were dreaming. Park Woojin needing your help? You wrinkled your nose slightly, trying to distract yourself from the thought, before continuing towards the bus stop. He followed in pursuit, his expression stoic once again, if not a little pink in the cheeks still. By the time the clambering bus arrived, you had taken out your earbuds and your bus card, swiping twice and waving him on. He ducked his head, letting his bangs cover his shy gaze as he sat besides you. All of the vacant seats around you made you almost blush at the thought of him choosing to sit by your side, but the other part of you chided at yourself for the thought. Of course he would– the whole purpose between you two travelling together was for a stupid biology research paper.
“I like that song too,” Woojin said quietly, his eyes directed at the head cushion of the seat in front of him. He was fiddling awkwardly with his phone, unsure of what to do in the silence as the bus bumped along the street. You took out an earbud, before hesitantly offering it to him. His gaze lit up, but his lips remained in a mutual line.
“I didn’t know you were a fan of Bruno Mars,” you whisper, not wanting to distract the few souls actually on the bus. You were somehow mortified at the idea of him listening to your music playlist. Was he judging you secretly? Was it expected that you would even like some song like When I Was Your Man?
“This is actually a good song to dance to. It’s kind of tricky to display the emotions but if you can’t do that then it could be a sad slow dance, too.” He whispered back, before tapping your shoulder to signal that the bus was at your stop. You stand up, his words still swirling in your mind. Part of you wanted to ask him to dance for you to this song, but another part of you knew better. The remainder of the walk to your apartment was quiet, sifting through various songs in your playlist. He didn’t comment at the flood of sorrowful and slower songs, instead just bobbing his head to the beats of Special by Lee Hi and Snow Flower by Park Hyoshin.
“You like a lot of older songs,” he didn’t sound surprised as you entered the elevator, and you took back the earbud from him. You nodded, waiting for him to say something else. “They’re all good though.” You fumble for the key in your pocket, hoping he didn’t notice the nervousness at his words. His praise made you feel flustered, and as much as it embarrassed you, you enjoyed it.
“I hope you can excuse the mess,” you said apologetically. He walked in, taking off his shoes and tucking them into the corner where there were other shoes. He looked around, his eyes careful and you could imagine the whirl of calculations and thoughts buzzing in his mind.
“It’s a nice place you have.” His words were punctuated with a rumbling of his stomach, which caused him to send a bashful smile to you, his eyes flashing with hope. “Er. By any chance, is there food?”
“Go ahead and sit down and start. Do you like any fruits? I have apples and pears.” He nodded gratefully, before moving towards the dining table. You watched him settle down, taking out his laptop and focusing on his work fairly quickly. You carefully cut the fruit, trying to make it as prettily arranged as possible. You had never done this for anyone outside of your family, and most certainly not a boy. You had always envisioned it to be something done in the far future, perhaps when you had a fiance or long time boyfriend or husband. The thought of the boy being Woojin rattled you even more, a distraction until you felt a sharp nick in your finger and looked down to see blood welling up. You sighed, grabbing a bandaid and messily putting it on, before grabbing a pair of forks and setting the dish in front of Woojin. He looked up, eagerly reaching for a slice.
“It’s a rabbit!” He exclaimed, unable to hide his excitement at the little ears you had made. You smiled, basking in his joy. Your grandmother and mother had cut all their apples like this for you at a young age, and now you were spreading the family joy. He reached for another, munching enthusiastically, before he halted, his eyes focused on your hand as you reached for your own laptop.
“Is something wrong?” You mumble, hiding the bandaged finger out of sight. He frowned slightly, before grabbing your wrist gently and bringing the damaged hand forward, examining it keenly.
“Did you cut yourself? Did you wash it? It’s bleeding through.” His words poured out of his lips, quickly and laced with worry. He was worried!
“It’s honestly fine–”
“It’s honestly a deep cut, ____.” The way he said your name shut you up, and you felt warmed by the concern. “Where’s your first aid kit?” You sighed, before pointing at the medicine cabinet that was barely in view from the kitchen at your seat. He rose, sifting through the contents before he grabbed the tiny plastic container. He took out an antiseptic wipe, before peeling off the now blood soaked band aid.
“This is going to sting,” he warned, before carefully dabbing at the cut. Stinging did not quite describe the pain, and you scrunched your face up to avoid spilling out some profanity. He tried to not smile at how adorable it looked, and instead fanned it with his free hand as he took out the antibiotic cream and applied a thin layer, finishing it off with a bandaid. It looked considerably neater than your own lousy attempt, and you stammered a measly word of thanks. He looked satisfied at his dandy work, instead turning back to his laptop.
“Anyways, back to this project. I heard from a few of the upperclassmen about this project and I hope you don’t mind that I started doing a bit of research and topic finding on my own. I printed a few papers out on one of the topics I liked.” He handed a stack of stapled articles, and you were impressed to see the already highlighted information, along with the immaculate notes he had written. You scanned through, eyes flickering every time he made a particularly loud sound as he continued to eat the fruit.
“I like it.” You announce finally, looking up at him with a smile. “I don’t think anyone else would think of triple negative breast cancer combinational therapy between dihydroartemisinin and 3-bromopyruvate. This is a pretty solid topic.” He grinned widely, his little “fang” poking out. He took the second fork, before spearing through a pear and handing it to you.
“I just realized I ate almost all of this without you. I’m sorry, I was really hungry.” He mumbled, and he separated the papers in half. “Also, I’m glad we’re partners for this. So many of our classmates probably wouldn’t have understood this topic.” You bite into the pear, relishing the sweetness. He probably didn’t realize that it was your favorite fruit, but it was the thought that counted.
“I mean, it’s pretty fool proof. Dihydroartemisinin targets the spindle fiber formation during mitosis, and 3- bromopyruvate lowers the cellular metabolism. They work hand in hand.” You mumble thoughtfully, finishing off the pear. He took the fork, spearing another pear slice and handing it to you again. You smile at the notion, and the two of you start your work quietly.
By the time night had fallen, he was humming some song repeatedly. The two of you straightened up as his phone alarm rang, playing the same song, signalling his time to leave for dance. He smiled slightly.
“I’m really thankful you’re so hard working.” You blushed a bit at his words. He was really too kind for his own good.
“What is that song, if you don’t mind me asking.” He smiled broadly at this, his little tooth showing.
“That’s the song me and the boys are performing at the audition. I thought the best thing for me to do was familiarize myself with it. I’m one of the younger members, so I have to work harder.” You nod in fascination. The passion that sparked in his gaze was intriguing, and you wondered briefly if this was what a bug felt like when it saw light.
“What’s the title?”
“Get Ugly by Jason Derulo. I’ll dance a bit for you some day. Maybe tomorrow.” You nod eagerly at this, and he laughs, ruffling your hair a little. The warmth from his hand blossomed across your body, and you missed it the moment he recoiled, as if realizing his action. He smiled a little demurely, his gaze unable to meet yours and his cheeks reddening. “Good night, _____.” He slung his bag over his shoulder and scurried out of the apartment, leaving you to retire with a flicker of warmth still where his hand had been.
“So I forgot to fill my bus card again,” Woojin began, running a hand through his fluffy brown hair. He eyed you cautiously, expecting some disappointment or frustration. Instead, you stifled a laugh and shook your head teasingly.
“Luckily for you, I still have money in mine.” He grinned at this. You two had grown increasingly comfortable since being initially paired up, much to your pleasant surprise. You were looking forward to spending more time with him, mainly because he had promised to dance for you and because it was just nice to have someone to spend time with.
“It might rain soon– Oh, it is raining.” He held a hand out to catch a few droplets, before playfully flicking it at you. You shrunk away, about to shout at him, but caught yourself. He genuinely looked happy, perhaps the brightest you had seen him off stage! He caught your stare, and you glanced towards your feet instead, pretending to shy away from the rain as you set off towards the bus stop. He jogged after you lightly, a comfortable silence surrounding you two. You found temporary refuge under the trees that lined the path, but knew that there wouldn’t be anything to shelter you when you saw the crowd of people at the bus stop.
You sigh, standing at the end of the line with Woojin. The rain was beginning to fall harder, and you tried to not flinch every time a cold droplet of water splattered against your face. You could feel the rain trickle down your forehead, and you wiped it with your hand, silently begging the bus to come. You prepared yourself to wipe off the next trickle, but it never came. The water stopped tapping your face, and you glanced up to see Woojin’s hand covering your head, his gaze nonchalantly directed towards where the bus was slowly coming into view.
“Oh, it’ll be here in a few seconds.” You nod wordlessly, eyes still fixated on his hand. You wanted to hold it, to keep it warm and protected from the cold, but you knew your place. That would just make it awkward, and make him uncomfortable with you.
“Can I change into my dance clothes? My uniform got kind of wet,” you nodded and point towards your bathroom, which he shuffled into awkwardly. You also turned to your room, changing into your sweatpants and baggy Hello Kitty T-shirt. Part of you wondered if you should be embarrassed to sport this outfit in front of him, but another part of you dismissed the worry. Why care about someone who you didn’t have a chance with from the beginning?
“Do you want anything to drink or eat?” You ask as you enter the dining room. You ignored how handsomely boyish he looked in his simple all black attire, and tried to not let your gaze linger. He stifled a smile as he saw your faded pink shirt.
“Do you have hot chocolate?” You nodded, and turned to the kitchen. “Cute.” you almost froze at the words. Did you hear him, or was it just the rain hitting the window in the downpour? You forced the thoughts away. You probably had a higher chance of having auditory hallucinations than hearing him call you cute. You prepared the hot chocolate a little slower than usual, not wanting to be in the same room as him with your heart beating as erratically as it was at the moment.
“Thank you,” he accepted the mug with a grateful smile, inhaling the scent of the chocolate. You didn’t tell him that you actually snuck some of the more expensive cocoa powder into his to make it taste better, and sat down with your own mug of regular Swiss Miss, stirring the last few clumps of solids into sweet liquid. He stood up, tapping on his phone a few times. A familiar tune came on. Get Ugly.
“Are you dancing for me?” He nodded, a wicked grin on his face. He was not the same demure and bashful boy that he had been a few seconds ago. His face radiated confidence, and each movement he made was deliberate. His stare pierced yours as his movements were fluid from start to finish. His presence was explosive, and you were awestruck as his ability to pour his heart into a performance that was seen by only you.
As the song ebbed away, his breathing filled the room, and an unsure smile returned to his face as he searched your face for a reaction.
“How was it?” Each word was punctuated by the a puff of air and you grinned, clapping your hands enthusiastically. He smiled freely at this, his canine poking out adorably.
“You’re honestly amazing. I wish I could dance like that,” you said wistfully. He extended his hand slowly towards you, as though you were an injured bird who could potentially run away from fear.
“I’ll teach you right now.” Your eyes widened and you shook your head furiously. There was no way you were going to let him see you dance. You couldn’t even call the shameful movements you made to the beat a dance; hell, half of the “moves” weren’t even properly matched to the beat.
“I’m really not good at this–”
“Then I’ll pick a slower song.” He hesitated, before scrolling through what you imagined to be his playlist. Finally, he turned on a familiar song. Snow flower.
“You listen to this?” He shrugged, before grabbing your hand gently.
“My mom was a fan of the drama. I was only five at the time, but I remember it a little. So Jisub. Don’t a lot of girls like him?” He guided your hands to his shoulders, while his hands cautiously wrapped around your tiny body. You flinched a little at the touch, and his hands recoiled.
“You’re better than him.” The words blurt out before you can stop them. “Sorry. I was just a bit surprised and I couldn’t filter myself,” you whisper, and he nods tensely, before trying once again. Over Park Hyoshin’s beautiful voice, you felt yourself relax a bit, and for the first time ever, you enjoyed dance. It wasn’t quite dancing in the powerful way Woojin had performed, but in the stillness of the minimal movements the two of you were making, it seemed just as breathtaking. You tried to keep your mind away from complicated thoughts, but they pestered you constantly. ‘Why was he doing this? What am I supposed to do after this? Do I just play it cool?’ As the song faded out, he leaned a little closer, wrapping his arms around you in a brief hug. You felt your insides melt, as if everything had just been blown out of reality and you were thrown off into some strange world of fantasy.
“I- I think we should get back to the paper.” You stammer, backing out of his hug, and shuffled towards the dining table. He followed, his cheeks a little pink and his eyes restless. He looked lost, a little disappointed at your reaction, and above all confused. He wanted to get to know you better, and seeing someone dance was a way for him to grow infinitely closer to him or her. To have shared that experience with a girl as timid and quiet as you was an enchanting experience, and he was surprised that you had even gone along with it.
The hours flew by in a silence that would be ruptured by the occasional cough or exceptionally loud scratch of the pencil. You struggled to keep your gaze on the gibberish of words. Something about how the centromere was affected. Another something you kept missing over about the MDA-MB 231 cell line. Triple negative. Iron concentration correlation to what? You peeked up at Woojin, who seemed to be flying through his own work. A small pile of packets he had already finished was beside him, while his to-do list was shortening rapidly. Yours was drastically smaller. ‘I guess I’ll have to stay up and do it today because it’s due in two days,’ you thought somberly, flipping the page. The page ripped a little, and the sound caused Woojin to glance up, his eyes meeting yours.
His expression was unreadable, closer to stoic than anything else. You felt embarrassed and mildly irritated at yourself. What was your luck to have been paired with him? You ducked down towards your work again, and he ran a hand through his bangs, again, while turning back to his own work. The silence stretched on for what seemed like eons, and you willed for something to happen. It was a game of intuition, where you wanted to say something and you were almost positive he did too. You glanced up, about to blurt out some casual conversation starter, but his alarm rang. Dance practice.
“Good job today,” he said quietly. He bit his lower lip, and you were waiting for a few next words that never happened. Instead, he turned to zip up his backpack, gaze pointing downwards. You trailed after him wordlessly to the door, opening the door for him. He smiled a little at the gesture, before reaching out to pat your head once again. “Good night, ____. I’ll see you tomorrow.”
“You like pears, right?” Woojin asked, before holding out a can. It was pear flavored aloe. You smiled at the gesture, trying to open it. A dull throb from the cut a few days prior ached, and you winced. He took the can from you, walking ahead of you towards the bus stop. You could hear the container open with a pop, and he turned, a teasing smile on his face.
“Stop it. I got that cut because I was preparing food for you,” you sniffed the air indignantly, and he let out a small chuckle. You did not mention the slow dance from yesterday, nor did you even dare of telling him that your thoughts were filled of only him. You had stayed up a few more hours into the early morning, trying to catch up on your work. Luckily, you had actually finished all of your work, and he was almost done. Today would be a breeze.
“I’m sorry, ___.” He handed you the can, and you took a sip. It was sweet and chilled, the way you liked your drinks. You hum in appreciation, and he looked at your face. He loved the way your eyes crinkled into two crescents when you smiled, and how your baby hairs framed your face when there was a breeze. Perhaps you hadn’t an idea, but you were quite pretty to him.
“Do you want a sip?” You ask, confused by his staring. He smiled, accepting the can again. “Man, if I knew you were going to give me this I would have prepared something for you too.” He shrugged, relishing the taste.
“Getting to know such a quiet girl like you was an honor itself,” he mumbled thoughtfully, passing the can back. You pink a little at his words, and fished out his beanie that he had left the night before. You pull it over his face, deliberately covering his eyes with a giggle. He frowned, pulling it up to see your laughing face, and his expression softened immediately.
“Don’t get sulky because of that,” you said, and tapped his nose lightly, before turning to face back towards where the bus was arriving.
“I got this,” he said, and swiped his bus card twice. He actually refilled his card! You grinned, and sat beside him. The bumpy road lulled you to sleep, and dozed off in the late afternoon sun. You woke up from your blissful oblivion at a like poke on the cheek. Woojin was smiling down at you, motioning for you to get off the bus. You groggily followed, and he snorted with laughter as you got off of the vehicle.
“You snore so loud,” he began, and you rolled your eyes. You were always told you were a silent and unmoving sleeper. You were definitely not falling for it. “And you drool!”
“Where is your proof?” You stuck your tongue out, and he laughed, raising his hands in surrender.
“Man, I thought I could get away with it.” You nudge him playfully, and he tossed the empty can into the recycling. He must have taken it when you fell asleep. The thought warmed you a little, and you were constantly surprised by his caring ways. He was perfect, and you were the lucky classmate who got to experience this side of him for a few days. Today is the last day.
“If we finish early, want to go out a bit? It is Friday. I bet we can finish before I have dance. Or, you can come to dance with me.” Woojin looked at you hopefully. You gulped a little, and nodded slowly.
“If we finish early, I supposed I can go out. But I don’t think I can go to your dance studio. Besides, your audition is tomorrow and I wouldn’t want to take away from your practice time.” He nodded slowly, but still a smile formed on his face.
“How much more work do you have? I just need to type up a final paragraph.” You gasped at how much time the two of you had leftover. If you were already finished, then he would be done in a matter of an hour.
“I finished my work last night,” you admitted. He grinned, before nudging you towards the apartment door.
“Then I guess we have more than enough time to hang out. Let me ask Donghyun what there is to do that’s fun in this area– he plans all of our outings so I’m sure he can think of something.” He looked bright, like a child on Christmas morning, and you shook your head in amusement.
“Can I at least change out of the uniform?” He nodded, before pointing at his bag.
“I brought a change of clothes anyways.” You left for your room, heart pounding. He was making it impossible for you to even think of giving up this closeness with him. You dreaded tomorrow even more. In a matter of hours, this spell that created the dreamlike fantasy would be over. He would have no reason to continue being your friend, and you would have no excuse to talk to him. Perhaps you could maintain waving to him in the halls, but that seemed to be the limit at which you two could stay close.
You opted for a simple white tee with rose embroidery on the top, and skinny jeans. He had changed as well by the time you came out and were tying your hair into a ponytail.
“Wow, we’re matching. Is this a couple look?” He asked cheekily, motioning to his own rose embroidered shirt, which was black. You furrowed your brows, trying to not blush at his words. Couple look.
“Did Donghyun reply?” You ask instead, sitting next to him. He shook his head, before taking out his laptop.
“At worst, we can go to an arcade. I’m going to finish this paper really fast. Take a nap or something.” You agreed to his words, hugging your knees to your chest in the seat as you curled up. You let your cheek rest against your knee cap, and let yourself doze off once again. You felt something warm and soft encompass your shoulders, and opened your eyelids just a crack to see his black hoodie draped around you. You could hear him settle back into his seat, the typing restarting as he continued his work. The hoodie smelled like him, something clean and light. Perhaps it was laundry detergent, or his soap, but it was something you wanted to remember forever.
It felt like only a few minutes, but you could see the sun dip below the buildings when Woojin nudged you to get up. He brushed the hair away from your face, trying to stifle his laughter at the giant red circle imprinted on your cheek from your knee. You swatted him away, mumbling some incoherent complaint.
“Don’t worry, it’s kind of endearing. Just… do this.” He pulled the hood up so it covered your head, and you shoved him as he erupted in laughter, the sound beautiful to your ears. “Also, Donghyun said that at evening the food stalls and little stores are nice to visit.” You nodded, before realizing that he had given you his hoodie.
“Don’t you need this?” He shook his head, taking out another one, also black, with the plain white letters ‘BNM’ on it.
“I have another, don’t worry. You’re going to submit this online tomorrow, right?” You nod, and he smiles cheerily, before picking up his bag. “Let’s go then!” He was filled with infectious energy, surprisingly dragging you by the wrist to every destination. He refused to let you buy their fish cakes, so you forced him into accepting the bubble tea instead. You strolled in and out of little shops. He struck silly poses as you clipped on neon pink bows and plastic tiaras to his hair, and he returned the favor by urging you to try on fake moustaches and some hideous bucket hat. The quiet and intimidating boy from the first day was no longer there. Instead, this silly and fun loving soul was showing off his dance moves again on the streets in an impromptu dance battle you two had stumbled upon.
“Go Woojin!” You cheered, eyes glued to the boy as he smirked. He simply knew he was going to kill whatever performance he had, and you loved it. The crowd gathering cheered for him, and it was pretty obvious who the winner was in your eyes. You passed him back his stuff after he shook hands with the other dancer, a satisfied glint in his eyes as sweat was dripping down his face. You wiped it absentmindedly with your handkerchief you had kept in your bag. He smiled sweetly at this, grabbing your hand and lowering it.
“How was I?” He asked, his hand still wrapped around yours. You grin back, unable to deny yourself of this. ‘Just for this one last night… let me enjoy it.’ You rearrange your hand in his grip so they’re comfortably together, much to his pleasant surprise.
“You’re the best no matter what.” You replied honestly. He squeezed your hand, keeping it warm in the cool evening air. His face looked a little nervous, and your eyes widened as he began to move closer to you, his face approaching your own. You were about to let your eyes close, but then a familiar alarm sounded. The two of you jumped apart, and he smiled apologetically.
“I set the alarm a little early so I can walk you back home. It is night, after all.” He took your hand once again, and you obliged. Your heart was racing at the prospect of him doing what exactly. Kissing you? Hugging you? What was going to happen if the alarm hadn’t rung? He led you through the crowd, keeping you close and made sure to have his arm out to part the sea of people. You felt safe, but a sadness suffocated your thoughts. This is it, you thought as you finally arrive at the front of your apartment. He fixed your hair a little, and you try to not let your lip tremble. Where you two really just going to be strangers again? He was too popular, and you were too quiet in school to probably catch his attention in the halls.
“Have a good night.” He said quietly. He lingered a bit, taking in your sleepy appearance in his hoodie, which was too big for you. “Keep the hoodie. I’ll take it back another day.” A small flare of hope to rekindle their friendship.
“Good luck tomorrow.” You stand up on your tippy toes, giving him a chaste peck on the cheek. You both turn red, and you look away. “You should get going now.” You turn for the elevators, and pressed the button, a little dazed at your ability to have even pecked him. ‘He probably won’t want to talk to me after that-’
“Thank you. Today was fun. I’ll be sure to get the spot.” He said, his arms wrapped around you. He let go as the bell notified you both of the elevator’s arrival. “Sleep well.”
It was already late in the afternoon when you woke up. You had taken melatonin to help you sleep at night, and it worked a little too well. Your mother had left for work, as had your father. You sighed, taking your laptop out to submit the paper. You had checked it over a few times out of restlessness last night, and were positive it was submittable for a good grade.
After a quick shower, you pulled on Woojin’s hoodie once again. You loved how soft it was, how it was oversized and covered your hands so only your fingertips poked out, and how simple it was. But above all, you loved how it smelled of him. Your thoughts drifted to him for the nth time since you had woken up. Was his audition going well? Did he even go yet? He said he would be done by early evening or late afternoon, but you had no idea what the actual time was. You sighed. This would not do. You needed something to do.
Your stomach grumbled as you looked at the empty fridge. There were only a few beverages, and a container of kimchi that looked a little too fermented. Go out for a walk, go get some food. That was what you could do. You pulled on your thickest socks and put on your sneakers, the hood up to cover your messy bun. As you opened the door, a gasp made you look up.
The boy was standing there, his hand outstretched to ring the doorbell. He had a bag of what looked like fried pork cutlet and pear aloe drinks. In his other hand was a small teddy bear, one that you had been admiring the night before.
He rubbed his head awkwardly, a sigh escaping his lips. His eyes were embarrassed, and it showed in how red his cheeks were growing.
“H-Hi, ____.” He stammered, before clearing his throat. “I did well like I promised. And I thought maybe you would want some company while you submitted the assignment.” He winced at how stupid his words sounded, and you accepted the bear, looking at it fondly.
“How did you know I liked this?” He straightened up, attempting to speak some sensible words the second time around.
“I saw you staring at it. It was a pair right? I have the other.” He turned so you could see the other bear’s head poking out from his dance bag. “Did you eat? I have food.” He moved towards the door, and you raised an eyebrow. What about his dance team? It looked like he had come back from the competition without even changing, especially by the look of his outfit.
“This is really sweet and all but is there an actual reason? Shouldn’t you be celebrating with the guys?” He coughed at your words, and his face turned a shade redder as he sighed. He shifted the bag of food out of his hand and onto his wrist, before taking your hand.
“I was trying to find a smoother way of doing this but you’re really a difficult girl.” You try to not blush at his words and intense stare. “I wanted to formally confess. I like you a lot, ____.” You felt your face turn more red at this, and he licked his lips, unable to look at you in the face anymore. “I know you probably don’t return it, and that I’m rambling and I probably sound like an idiot, but I had to try-”
“I like you too.” You interrupt. His head shot up, looking at you with widened eyes. His mouth had fallen open, and his lips seemed to not function as he tried to register your words.
“I like you.” You repeat bashfully, and finally open the front door. “I think you can come now. I guess I can accept having my boyfriend visit me spontaneously.”