"You know that I love you, right?"
"Don't say that. You know we can't be together."
The long, beeping sounds indicate that Jiyong has yet again hung up on him. Somehow, their conversations always end up like this. No matter what they start off talking about, the end is always the same.
"You know we can't be together."
And Seungri's tired of that.
Tired of being ignored, of having his feelings being pushed away when he knows that Jiyong loves him back. But he also knows that Jiyong is not at fault here. Both of their careers, even their band's career, is at risk here. They can't act carelessly and think that they can be together and everything will be okay.
Seungri sighs and puts down the receiver. It's a Friday night tonight, the second night of their short break - a rest between their continuous promotions. Sitting in his house and drinking alcohol all alone doesn't sound too enticing.
However, as tired as Seungri is, he just wants to forget about Jiyong for now. Forget about the band, about his responsibilities, about his limitations.
Instead, he wants some company. A good distraction.
Two hours later and Seungri returns home from the nightclub with Jiyeon, a pretty, black haired beauty. They spend the night together and Seungri's surprised when in the morning he finds Jiyeon, only wearing his shirt and her underwear, in the kitchen making some breakfast.
"You're still here?" The surprise is clear in his voice.
Jiyeon turns around and smiles at him, "Why? You want me to leave?"
Seungri finds himself smiling at her playful tone and shakes his head. "No, you can stay - as long as you plan on sharing some of that breakfast."
JIyeon laughs, her head falling back and her voice soft and melodious. Her laughter gives Seungri a familiar itch, the itch of wanting to write songs. In the back of his mind, a small voice whispers, 'You know she can't replace Jiyong though.'
Two weeks pass by and BIGBANG is back touring now, although a break is coming in just under a week. Seungri smiles as he reads Jiyeon's cute, encouraging messages filled with stickers and emoticons. Her happiness and cheerfulness is addictive and Seungri clings to it, absorbing it and using it to forget the pain in his heart that still comes to him every day and night.
"Yah, Seungri, are you coming out with us for dinner on Saturday?" Daesung asks, slinging an arm across Seungri's shoulder and tries to read the texts.
Seungri lets out a little surprised yelp and quickly covers his phone, "Y- yes of course I'm coming hyung!"
"Yah, who were you texting?" Daesung looks at him, wiggling his eyebrows.
"No one, hyung," Seungri replies, looking around to see if he can change the topic or find a distraction.
"Uh huh, sure," Daesung replies, letting the topic go for now. "But make sure to bring your girlfriend with you to the dinner too okay?"
"What?!" Seungri looks at Daesung with wide eyes, he never mentioned anything about Jiyeon to any of the members or the staff people. "What girlfriend?"
"Seungri-yah, it's obvious~" Daesung teases, his voice lilting. He smiles at Seungri before continuing to walk to the dressing room.
Seungri stands frozen in the middle of the corridor, baffled at how Daesung knew that he had a girlfriend. Did it mean that the others knew too? Was he really that transparent?
No, he had been an idol for almost 9 years. He must be better at hiding things by now. But if Daesung knew about it, who was to say that the others didn't? Could it mean that they also knew about him and Jiyong? That could be problematic.
Anyhow, he couldn't think about all of this right now. Not when the concert was going to start within an hour.
Saturday comes and by then Seungri has already decided that perhaps it is time that he introduce Jiyeon to the other members. It will be better that way. Then he can be more serious about Jiyeon and maybe even finally move on.
The dinner's at one of their usual restaurants, so the owner knows to reserve a private booth for the members and make sure that no one disturbs them. Jiyeon and Seungri enter through the back gate, and greet the owner before he leads them to their table where the others are waiting.
Only Youngbae, Daesung and Seunghyun are there so far - and they seem to be discussing on the wine to order, and very seriously at that too.
"Hyungs," Seungri speaks up to get their attention. "Meet Jiyeon, my girlfriend."
Jiyeon bows her head and greets the other three members, smiling brightly at them.
"Ah, so you're the one who has been making our maknae smile so happily for the past few weeks," Seunghyun speaks up, his lips curved up in a slight smirk.
"Hyung," Seungri whines, easing up and relaxing at the usual teasing. This is good. They like her. Seungri likes her. Jiyeon likes him. This should be good.
"He didn't lie," Daesung replies, raising his eyebrows at Seungri before turning to Jiyeon and returning her smile. "Hi, I'm Daesung."
"Hyung I'm pretty sure she knows who you are," Seungri says before Jiyeon can respond.
Jiyeon decides to ignore Seungri's response and instead clasps the offered hand in greeting, "Nice to meet you Daesung-ssi!"
"See Seungri-yah, she has manners," Daesung responds, the teasing tone back in his voice. "She'll be good influence on you."
Seungri groans while Daesung winks at Jiyeon and they both laugh. The newly arrived couple take their seats and engage in small talk with the others, waiting for their last member to arrive.
Ten minutes pass and Jiyong's still not there.
"Where's Jiyong hyung? Is he not coming?" Seungri asks his other members, shifting his eyes from Daesung to Youngbae to Seunghyun.
"He should be here soon," Youngbae explains. "He told me he'd be a bit late as he had something to do before dinner."
"Oh," Seungri responds and reaches for a menu resting on the side of the table. He needs a quick distraction as once he starts thinking about Jiyong, he can't seem to stop.
Seungri's gone through the menu twice and selected his dishes when he hears Daesung let out a loud 'Wahh~~'. He looks up and grimaces when he sees Jiyong's arm wrapped around a woman's waist.
She looks like a model with her long hair, proportionate body and thin legs. Completely Jiyong's type in girls.
Seungri feels a rush of emotions pass through him, but he can’t tell one apart from the other. It’s overwhelming and he feels his throat clogging up. He wants to leave, but he can’t.
“Wouldn’t you introduce us to the lovely lady Jiyong?” Youngbae asks the newly arrived couple, smiling mischievously at the two.
“Oh,” Jiyong mumbles, flustered - he is flustered. Seungri swallows, how is he supposed to handle this. “This is, Seunghee. My…girlfriend.”
Seungri’s eyes linger on Jiyong’s adam’s apple, on the way he gulps before saying “girlfriend,” on the way Jiyong hesitates before putting on his confident mask on and wrapping his arm around Seunghee’s waist.
You’ve got to be kidding me, Seungri thinks.
He can’t do this. Not like this, not anymore. So he excuses himself, smiling sheepishly as he tries to calmly flee to the bathroom. He doesn’t want his running away to be obvious.
He locks the single men’s bathroom door once he enters.
Seungri turns on the tap and lets the water run. Slowly he splashes some on his faces, rubbing his eyes and taking deep breaths, in and out. In and out.
Jiyong is as transparent as he is.
They’re both fucking idiots, and neither of them can move on. But do they really have any other option, than to move on?