It had taken a week and the tears had finally dried up. Each night you systematically close your lap top before the time that Tong has been trying to call. Your sister has convinced you to stay until the DeLish concert. It made sense, the tickets had cost a pretty penny; however, you didn’t know if you could sit in the audience and watch the men that had betrayed you. You were contemplating simply selling your ticket or giving it to her to take a friend. The concert is still a little over a week away.
You've made your return flight plans for the night of the concert; catching another red eye directly after it ends. You figure if you do go and it hurts like the hell you think it will; that a red eye gives you a reason for red, puffy eyes on arrival.
Your cell phone buzzes and thinking it to be Angeline or Eun, you automatically pick it up and open the text. Movements freeze as you look down at an unfamiliar number and start to read.
“Noona, please talk to me. Please allow me the courtesy of apologizing and begging your forgiveness. I will not do this over a text, it deserves face to face. Please Noona. Tong”
The phone falls out of your hands as pain shoots straight to your chest. Does he deserve another chance? A chance to hurt you again when it already feels like you're going to die? The pain is so severe. Do you want another chance with him? Your thought process and brain begin running over and over these questions until you realize that the pain in your chest has worsened. You are having a full on panic attack. You close your phone, grab your coat and bag, and head out for a walk to try to regain your balance.
After an hour he knew that Mr. Kim told the truth and you would not respond. He had only one more ace up his sleeve. He had hoped it wouldn’t be necessary, that Mr. Kim would have been able to work his magic with her, but that hadn't happened. He dialed the familiar number and is greeted, "Tong”.
“Soohyuk, I need your help with something.”
Reef decides to follow in Ae’s footsteps and spends an entire afternoon writing and rewriting a letter of apology to you. He knows an apology in person is best, but no one has been able to reach you in the past two weeks. Leaving it any longer just feels wrong and he has never written anything so difficult in his life.
The next morning he accompanies Ae to Mr. Kim’s office to see if he is willing to get his wife to deliver the letters. It seems that she is not acknowledging any male of the species and has put herself in seclusion; only speaking with her sister and Mrs. Kim. Mr. Kim accepts the letters, but is unable to promise anything. It is up to her whether or not she decided to deliver them. The members bow to their mentor as they leave his office; they have done what they can for the time being. Now they wait.
Eun is waiting for you the next morning when you return from your walk. Not feeling up to doing a daily dance practice, you have opted instead to go for walks. Sometimes up to three times a day. The fresh air, change of scenery and being out among people that ignore your existence is helping to keep the panic attacks at bay.
Eun smiles, gives you a hug and the two of you go inside to visit.
After about 30 minutes into the visit, she gets an undecided look on her face and reaches into her purse.
“Sweety. Namil brought these home with him last evening; wondering if I would bring them to you. I will admit, I read them. I was not about to present you with more pain if the apologies were not worthy. They are good boys and they have expressed themselves well; it is up to you whether you read them or not.”
You look over to see two letters in her hands.
“They are from Ae and Reef. I am ashamed to say there is not one from Tong, that disappoints me greatly.”
You dig your phone out of your bag and show her the text that you received a few days earlier. She reads it and looks up at you. You open your laptop and she stares in shock at the numerous unanswered calls to your Skype.
“I see,” she respondes, glancing over at you. “You have not responded to any of this I assume?”
You shake your head, the look on your face one of devastation and you swore you would NOT start crying again. You are so done with the poor pitiful me attitude and letting the pain rip through you.
She closes the laptop, hands it back to you with your phone and just sits there for a moment in silence.
Her voice is quiet as she begins. “Answer me something?”
You look up, awaiting her question.
“Do you have feelings for him? Because it appears to me that he has great feelings for you. Many a man would have given up after the first or second night. It appears that he is in pain also.”
“It still hurts. I've never felt this kind of pain before, not even when my career was ruined and my reputation shot to hell. Why does this hurt so much more?”
Eun takes your hands in hers and rubs them.
“With great feelings come great emotions, good or bad. Only a thin line separates happiness or depression, love or hate, indescribable joy or pain. Only those that we hold closest to us do we allow the opportunity to affect us at their will. Was the happiness worth the pain? If so, would not the risk of pain be worth it to feel that joy again?”
You don't know what to say or how to feel. You hadn't thought you'd let Tong in that close. How had he broken through the wall that you built so many years ago? Was your pain caused by your own feelings? In the disappointment in the person you made him up to be in your head? Not the real person he is?
You nod your head in understanding and she pulls you into another hug before standing to leave.
“It seems that even though everyone makes mistakes, some feel more grievious than others. However, every mistake deserves a chance at forgiveness and restitution.”
You follow her to the door, hug her one more time and go back to the couch where a couple of letters weigh heavily on you.
You read the letters and accepted their apologies. You could understand Ae and his comment of being in shock, not reacting fast enough. It isn’t a good excuse but it is understandable and acceptable. Reef explained to you his story and his jealousy. Having been in the business you knew exactly what he was talking about and how difficult it is to stay positive about your talent. He should not have done what he did or said what he said, but he had and it was over. You understand, forgive, but decide there is no possible way to have any type of relationship with Reef; you no longer trust him.
You don’t know what that means in relation to the other group members; however, since you're returning home a week, you decide it doesn’t matter.
You feel heart sick for the loss of the budding friendship with Ae that had been developing. It's hard to be in the business, hard to make tight friends, you decide that you'll give him another chance. He had mentioned he and Tong coming by the dorm, trying to find you, and felt the letter his last resort. Silence is a powerful killer, actions speak much louder than words ever can. While his previous actions hurt, you have no doubt his future ones will attempt to be better.
Eun’s advice continues to ring through your head, even after Angeline returns from her busy schedule that night. Noticing your better mood, she inquires about what happened today.
You relate Eun’s visit and let her read the letters. You know the question is coming, and you're still trying to get your head and heart to agree on what you want.
“What about Tong?” she holds up the letters, “These are great letters but as he said in his text, person to person is better. Why won’t you take pity on him?”
You take a deep breath; “I want to, I really, really want to. But now I’m scared.”