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seoyeon has never seen a coffee shop do deals for black friday. the drinks are already all worth less than anything that should be on sale, so it’s a moot point unless the company wants to go bankrupt.

unfortunately, there’s a first time for everything. the problem is she’s caught in the middle of it.

she waves the latest customer away and sinks a little when she sees the line is even longer since she last saw it a minute before, stretching out the door. seoyeon resigns herself to staying at least an hour after her shift; at least she’ll get overtime. $10 more in her bank.

the next customer steps up to the counter, and seoyeon is almost too tired to register how her hair slides across her neck and her eyes shine with something she hasn’t seen in awhile. she needs more than a few moments to compose herself for this pretty stranger, time she doesn’t have.

seoyeon has always had a weakness for pretty girls, and the way her lips shine like cherries is a bit too much for her.

so she stares. and she’s hitting herself in her head, because her physical functions aren’t currently adept enough to do it.

then the girl’s eyes crinkle into half moons as she smiles and seoyeon knows she’s totally fucked.

“aren’t you supposed to greet me?” the pretty stranger asks.

seoyeon blinks once slowly, then again, and her instincts catch up to her. “welcome to haven coffee. what would you like?” she thanks whatever higher power there is that her voice doesn’t crack.

“good job,” the girl muses, and looks up at the menu like she hadn’t had all the time in the world when she was in line.

seoyeon would usually be annoyed by this, but it gave her more time to study her, so she can’t complain with a clear conscience.

and the way she tilts her head back and her neck becomes exposed, christ. it has to be illegal.

“i like the caramel macchiato,” seoyeon blurts, because, hey, she’s a normal person who can totally hold a conversation. “it’s. it’s really good. i think.”

maybe not that normal of a person.

but the stranger giggles, and casts her gaze back to seoyeon. “you have a sweet tooth?”

she blushes. “yeah… sorry.” she doesn’t know exactly what she’s apologizing for, but she feels like she should anyway.

“it’s okay,” she says. “so do i.”

having one thing in common with a stranger, even a pretty one, shouldn’t make her heart skip a beat.

“i’ll get one of those,” she finishes, slipping a dollar bill (yes, the deals were that atrocious) across the counter. “small.”

seoyeon types it into the cash register, regretfully tearing her eyes away. “and that’s all?”

“yep.”

“name?” seoyeon asks.

“jiwon,” she tells her, and seoyeon’s heart fucking flutters. it’s perfect.

she scribbles her name on the cup and sets it aside for one of her coworkers to take care of. “that’ll just take a few minutes,” she finishes.

“thank you,” jiwon says, and as seoyeon looks back up, she winks. if seoyeon’s heart had skipped a beat before, it flatlines then.

the entire conversation only took a couple minutes, but it felt like seconds and a lifetime all at once. seoyeon wistfully watches jiwon walk to a table in the back, sighing.

“oh my god,” she hears from behind her, two voices whispering in perfect unison.

“they’re soulmates. it’s meant to be.”

“romsae, we just watched our BABY fall in love. we should’ve filmed it.”

“why didn’t you?”

“i was too busy swooning on seoyeon’s behalf. why didn’t you?”

“i was recording it in my memory. we can make them redo it when they’re married with five kids, anyway.”

“true, but it won’t be the same. we’re failiures as mothers.”

hayoung and saerom were two things to seoyeon; firstly they were the dorky, in love parental figures she never had. secondly, they were both pains in the ass in their own ways. she supposed, in retrospect, they go hand in hand.

still, she doesn’t have to respect them like parents. for that, she’s very thankful.

“you two are impossible,” seoyeon says without turning around, beginning to take care of the next customer in line.

they were also scarily in sync at least 100% of the time.

“i got this!” hayoung announces, bumping seoyeon’s hip so hard she stumbles and almost falls over.

saerom snatches the cup off the counter before anyone else can get to it. “go to her, seoyeon,” she coos. “get it, baby.”

seoyeon will never admit it, but she appreciates that sentiment just as much as she hates it.

without anything else to do, the shop already overstaffed, she shuffles over to jiwon. she apologizes when she bumps into people because she really cannot keep her eyes off this girl, but she doesn’t actually feel all that bad about it.

when she arrived at the table, for at least a few seconds, she just stares at the back of jiwon’s head and panics. she’s so pretty what the fuck do i SAY how can i impress her also why did she wink at me??? does that mean she’s interested or was she just making fun of me for being a mess i think it’s the latter this was a mistake i’m an idiot FUCK YOU SAEROM-

“what’s your name?” jiwon asks without turning around. seoyeon has a mini heart attack.

“seoyeon,” she responds. “can i, uh, sit down?”

jiwon giggles again. “yeah, uh, i guess,” she mocks. seoyeon doesn’t that mind all that much, either.

she sits across from jiwon, crosses her legs, and makes eye contact with her. it’s silent for a minute or two as jiwon scrutinizes her and seoyeon absentmindedly noted that she can feel the blood leaving her fingers from how tight she’s gripping her chair. that’s probably not healthy.

“seoyeon’s a good name.” she nods along dumbly.

“you like anime?”

i’ve fallen for a weeb.

“naruto’s nice.”

jiwon snorts. “typical. watch madoka magica. that’s real shit.”

“... okay?”

jiwon nods in satisfaction and goes back to scrutinizing, and saerom has to scream “caramel macchiato for jiwon” at least 3 times for her to snap out of it.

jiwon gets up to get her drink, and seoyeon finally has time to think about the ridiculous situation.

fact number one: she’s whipped.

fact number two: jiwon is, at least a little bit, interested.

fact number three: this is really cliché.

fact number four: jiwon’s smile is really pretty and she never wants to go another shitty morning without it.

fact number five: after reviewing fact number four, seoyeon falls a little bit more. not in love, but in the possibility of love, butterflies and first dates and all that.

“well, not to insult a pretty girl,” jiwon says, returning to her seat, “but you’re not that smooth. to make up for it, though, your friends are.” she shows seoyeon her cup, and she dies inside.

saerom wrote, in her pristine as fuck handwriting, her number and a list of rules if she wants to date “my baby who has never done anything wrong.” she’s suddenly reminded of her earlier exhaustion and deigns not to read all of them, but it’s… extensive. she wants to yell.

“i wouldn’t call that smooth,” she croaks out instead.

“it gets the job done,” jiwon said with a shrug, sipping her coffee. she grimaces, then glares at seoyeon. “fuck. you said this was good.”

“best thing on the menu. this place is shit.”

jiwon waves her hand. “still a lie. i usually don’t go out with people who lie.”

badump badump badump.

“for you, though, i’ll make an exception. you should thank your cute personality and your friends.”

seoyeon balks at her, jaw dropped, eyes wide.

“god, i wanna take a picture. you’re so adorable,” jiwon tells her, giggling. she stands up, coffee in hand. “i’ll text you, yeah?”

“y-yeah,” is all seoyeon can say in response.

seoyeon watches her walk out, dumping her coffee into the trash along the way, but keeping the cup.

hayoung slides into the seat jiwon was sitting in while seoyeon continues to gaze at the door. “that was somehow embarrassing and heartwarming all at once.”

seoyeon doesn’t answer.

“whatever,” hayoung mutters. “someday you’ll thank us for being the best mothers you could’ve ever asked for.”

(and if later, she feels her phone buzz in her pocket and her heart does a little jump, she’ll keep that to herself.)