Gary looked at his watch and checked the time; it was already 1 am when he reached outside her house. He looked himself for the last time through the side mirror and adjusted his cap a bit.
He has meet with her outside for so many times, but this is the first time he’s feeling so nervous. She asked to meet him, but he doesn’t know what she wants to talk about.
From afar, he saw her coming out of her house wearing her usual dark coloured attire and her black sunglasses. She pulled her cap low before entering Gary’s car.
Once she settled down beside him on the passenger seat Ji Hyo said without looking at him. “Let’s go oppa.”
“W-Where are we going?”
“Anywhere that’s quiet.”
Obediently, Gary just followed along Ji Hyo’s request and drove the car away. As he drives, the car atmosphere was really quiet.
“JI Hyo-ah, you are scaring oppa…What happened?”
Overly concerned, Gary reached out his free right hand and hold onto Ji Hyo’s left hand which is placed on her lap. Her heart skipped a beat as she looks away out to the window. She didn’t know what to do but her hands remained there, being held by Gary.
“Oppa…” She uttered slowly.
Feeling the urgency of the matter, Gary just abruptly stopped the car by the road. He turned to her and made her turn to him.
Shocked, she just kept looking down.
“Wae…? Ji Hyo-ah, you’re scaring oppa…What happened? Did he came and look for you again? Did he find trouble at you? Did he sack you? Are you withdrawing out of Running Man?”
Gary’s trains of question showed how worried he is for Ji Hyo. CEO Baek has always been a concern for him because he’s always worried about her status in the company after their break up. Every week he always thank the God when he sees Ji Hyo appear on the set for filming.
“No oppa..it’s not about him…It’s about me..”
Gary just kept quiet for Ji Hyo to finish her words.
“There’s someone that I like.”
Both walked slowly along Hangang River that flows through Seoul. The cool wind from the river, the quiet surrounding, and beautiful lightings from the big buildings on the background made it the perfect place for the duo to talk.
They stopped by one of the bench and sat down. Looking around empty park, both took off their sunglasses. Ji Hyo also took away the scarf that envelope around her neck.
Gary just looks out to the river with empty mind. He didn’t know what to say. He was just bombarded by Ji Hyo’s sudden confession that she likes someone else during the car trip. His heart has crushed to a million pieces that he barely had energy to talk.
‘Although I might not be able to hold your hands and walk, at least I’ll be able to stay by your side and be there for you always…’
He keeps brainwashing himself with those words. Please get it into your head Kang Gary.
“Oppa…” Ji Hyo suddenly blurt out. “I like someone, but…I don’t know am I supposed to tell the person.”
“Oh…Why not?” Gary replied softly, as neutral as he can be. He didn’t want to sound so obviously disappointed.
“Because I am a girl. Shouldn’t be guy be more initiative?” Ji Hyo said with a frown while looking at Gary intensely.
Gary felt guilt stricken and quickly look away. “Erm…well I guess so…But maybe the guy is afraid…”
“Afraid of rejection…Afraid that if he ever confessed…they can’t even be friends.”
“How do you know if you’ve never tried?”
Gary just kept his head low. What Ji Hyo said was right too. Suddenly he felt like a coward who only drills hole to escape from the problem.
“Well maybe the guy had tried…” He tried to salvage the situation.
“Did the guy ever made it clear? Or did he just give unclear signs that made the girl confused too?”
At this point, Ji Hyo was a little agitated. “Whatever, I don’t want to regret. So I am gonna confessed now to this person.”
“Now? How? You want to call the person? D-Do you want me to leave?”
Gary didn’t want to be on the scene. He didn’t want to witness how Ji Hyo confessed to someone that she likes in front of him. It felt like pouring a ton of salt on an open wound.
“Oh okay…as you wish…” Ji Hyo took out her phone swiftly pressed one the buttons from her favourite list. “I’m calling now…” Ji Hyo heaved out a big sigh, and pressed the green button.
He stood up and walks away when suddenly his phone rang loudly.
Surprised, Gary turns and looks at the seated Ji Hyo that was holding the phone on her left ear, her lips curving up to a smile.
D-Did he hear it wrongly?
Well, it could be anybody…don’t jump into conclusion…and misunderstood.
He checked his watch; it’s almost 2 in the morning. Nobody would really be calling at this hour.
Gary looked at Ji Hyo’s face that was beginning to turn red from embarrassment. She looked at pocket where Gary’s phone is ringing loudly.
Raising her voice a little because Gary is few metres away, “Aren’t you picking up?”
Still fixing his gaze at Ji Hyo, slowly his hand reached for his phone. Briefly he took a quick glance at the caller ID. His heart literally stops.
[Time: 1.44 am “Ji Hyo calling…”]
His world seems to have stopped spinning for the moment. Gary was stunned and startled for the moment because he could not believe what was happening…Did Ji Hyo just confessed to him? Or is she making fun at him? His mind is totally in a confused stage.
“Ahhhh ottoke!!” Ji Hyo put away her phone and buried her face in her palm. Her face was totally red from what was happening.
Gary just stood there like an idiot. He didn’t know what to do or what to say. Their surrounding was really quiet, only sound of the cold breeze hitting on the trees and Ji Hyo stomping the floor like a little kid could be heard.
Slowly, he walk back to the bench and sat down. He scooted closer to Ji Hyo. He reached for her hand that is covering her face and took them, holding them tightly.
“J-Ji Hyo-ah…are you serious? Are you for real?” He finally spoke. “You’re not making fun of me right?” Gary thought that he had every reason to doubt Ji Hyo.
“Yah Kang Gary! People just confessed to you and you’re asking me this??”
Ji Hyo is really embarrassed that she feels like punching him. She tries to hit Gary’s chest but he was holding so tightly that she barely able to move.
Moments later, Gary let go of his hand and then hugs her by her waist instead. He hugs her so tightly till there was no gap between them. Ji Hyo was a little startled that she was froze for a little while. Soon the warmth builds upon her and she relaxes and reciprocates his hug.
Gently she rested her chin on his shoulder and closes her eyes to enjoy the moment.
“Do you know how long I’ve waited to hear this?” Gary said, almost in teary-voice. “From now onwards, I don’t want just to be the happiest man on Earth on Monday only. I want to be the happiest man on Earth every day.”
Ever since he set her eyes on her on the first time she came as a guest for Ep8 of Running Man, he secretly had a crush on her but always remain neutral on the outside. But now at the moment, hearing that Ji Hyo actually feels the same way like he does, was like something that he never expect to hear it in his life.
Ji Hyo breaks into a smile because with that reply, she has got the answer that she wishes to hear too.
Gary breaks off the hug and gently holds her by her bare face.
“I’m not dreaming, am I?” Gary said softly, almost whispering.
Ji Hyo almost burst out laughing hearing the statement from him. She reached out her hand, using a little force to pinch him on his cheek.
“Ooouch!” Quickly Gary soothed his reddened cheek.
“You’re not dreaming…” Ji Hyo let out a small laugh.
Still soothing his cheek, Gary asked casually, “Are you sure it’s Kang Gary, me…? I didn’t misunderstand this whole thing in the wrong way right?”
“Yes, it’s you Kang Gary from Jamsil because you’re the answer to a girl like me.”
When they walked back to the car, it was already 5.30 in the morning. They came to the river as good friends and colleagues, but they walk back as an official couple with their fingers are interlocking with each other’s; fairly tightly with smiles brimming in their faces.
“I’ll send you home.” Gary said as he open the car door for Ji Hyo. Ji Hyo let out a sweet smile.
During the car ride, Gary kept looking out for Ji Hyo. She too, kept looking out for him which made them both break into laughter.
“Why, why are you laughing?” Gary asked.
“Then oppa why are you laughing?”
“Because I’m happy. I can’t believe that this is happening…to us…” Once said, Gary breaks into happiness kind of laughter, barely able to contain it.
“Without any signs, without any concern, you just appeared in my world, giving me happiness and warmth that I have always yearned for.”
It was already 7 am when he reached home. He didn’t go back immediately after they reach her house. They talked a bit because they didn’t bear to be apart so soon.
Once in his living room, he swiftly took out his phone and called Ji Hyo. The call went through and the caller ringtone caught him by surprise. He still remember clearly just last week when he called her, it was JYJ’s “In Heaven” played in the background but now it was a Leessang’s song.
“The girl that can’t break up the guy that can’t leave”
He was stunned and speechless. Speechless because of happiness. Happiness that overflowed from his body that he can’t stop smiling.
“Yeoboseyo” Ji Hyo’s soft voice called out.
“Ji Hyo-ah, oppa is home…” Gary called because it was Ji Hyo’s request to give her call once he’s safely home.
“Your caller ringtone. I remember it was JYJ’s song’s some days ago.”
“What to do…when you’re my namja-chingu (boyfriend)…Of course I must support your song…”
Gary literally could feel his heart racing and heart burning from excitement. “Ji Hyo-ah, oppa will see you for filming later alright?”
With that, Ji Hyo hang up the call. Thinking back, she felt a little embarrassed that she’s the one that took the first step being a girl. But she’s still glad that she has taken the step, a step that she won’t be regretting for now at least. She’ll remember this day, March 5th as an important day, the day that she confessed.