On Coffee & Heartstrings: Chapter Three
Previous ----------------------------------------------- Once winter classes finished and school was over for the next three months, things grew even more unsettling at home, I found myself in that second story of the coffee shop more. It seemed like two different worlds there. While snow fell gracefully from the sky and landed on the windows, melting away within seconds, there was a spring teeming with life just inside. Different flowers growing in the warm little café and snow drifted down to touch the colors only to be stopped and melt away. The grandma that ran the place never questioned why I was there, only smiling whenever I walked through the doors every evening. No one ever walked up to the second floor besides the grandma to bring coffee up every few hours. I spent more time there, studying and getting the book reviews finished than I did at home. Leaving my own grandmother alone for so long would make me feel bad if she hadn't allowed Ji-hun to move back in but with him there, it felt better to be here. On Sundays, I spent nearly the whole day laying about the second floor of the small café with Nam-joon. Depending on how work was moving along for him, he would come sit with me on random days. Sometimes he would sit next to me, pulling my legs over his own and listen to music. On those days, he wouldn't say much which lead me to believe it had been a rough day. On other days he'd sit at a booth nearby, writing something but would never let me see. Always hurrying to hide away his papers and glaring at me. Sometimes I would forget about reading for a moment and watch him, bobbing his head to music and writing. He always left one earbud out, probably to listen for when the grandma came up to check on us or hear me approaching. Every now and again, he'd catch me staring and smile before going back to the papers. My cheeks would grow hot before I went back to my own work. I tried never to look up when I could feel his eyes on me, opting to just pull my book over my face. Starbucks was still my go-to place in the mornings, it being closer to my house and far to early to make the trip to the café. Min Young had been working on her English and she was helping me with my Korean on the mornings I was actually functioning. It was nice to finally have friends. I liked the mornings Nam-joon met me, giving me a rundown on what his night had been like and what his roommates had done. He teased at me whenever he caught me wearing his jacket which usually ended up in us basically just switching. I was okay with that though, I liked the way his cologne smelled and his clothing was comfortable.
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On Coffee & Heartstrings: Chapter Two
Previous --------------------- Summer left and eventually fall did too, bringing in winter and the snowfall. I didn't see much of Nam-joon after that night, it was always glances of someone walking around a corner or a group a boys on the other side of the road. I always found myself looking for him on my morning coffee runs or my late night hot chocolate break but I never found him. Mom had been right about Ji-woo, she got engaged when the first cold snap hit the city. The wedding was set for in the spring since she always wanted an outdoor ceremony. None of us had seen her around as much, she was always on the go. Always planning the wedding or working. My mother was the same way. Always working, early starts and late ends and with the announcement of my cousins wedding she was working harder to take time off. Mother started taking out of town work to even take the few days for the upcoming event. Grandmother even kicked Ji-hun out because she'd had enough of him. We all had, he lost another job and had refused to look for another one. Holing himself away in his bedroom or staying out all the time drinking. It got really bad at one point when someone called the police on him and grandmother was sacred that loan sharks would start showing up. "Jo?"
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On Coffee & Heartstrings
"Bye grandma!" Rushing out the door, out the front gate and into the side street, today was going to be a good day. At least one has to have that outlook at the beginning of the day or it won't be a good day at all. Today, today was the first day of freshman year and if I didn't make it good then it wouldn't be. I spent my entire high school life studying away just so I could get to this point, just to make it into college and here I was. Walking down the street on the first day of my new college life. It was exciting and terrifying all at the same time. Spending the summer vacation exploring this new city, this new neighborhood, was mind blowing. Sure being a military brat meant traveling all over and I'd lived a few big cities but Seoul was a megacity, it had a third of the Korean population living in it. In the two months before college started up, I'd only memorized my neighborhood and the line to school. Starbucks, the smell of coffee and morning treats wafted down the street. It was tantalizing, mouthwatering and only made me walk faster. This was a morning ritual, shuffling down each day just to get this wonderful goodness. "Good morning Min Young." The girl standing behind the counter smiled at my greeting and gave a short wave. I didn't have to order, she was already halfway finished with the usual, probably spotted me walking down the street. "First day of classes. Good luck Jo." She handed over the steaming cup. I honestly had no idea what she just said to me, my Korean was conversational at best and it was not the best first thing in the morning. Despite my morning greeting, which I spent three days memorizing when I figured out she worked the same shift nearly every day, I hardly knew much else. "Fighting Jojo." Min Young pumped her fist and I returned the gesturing, smiling. She was a sweet girl and if we could actually communicate, being friends might be possible.
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I'm a fkn fabulous Kpopper ♥ Also a terrible person ☆