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Secretary Kim

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Day 3

“Is the HR OPEX report ready?” 

“The what sir?” I was confused with the term. 

“H R OPEX.” Minhyun said. “The operating expense for the Human Resource team, Jonghyun. Please. Keep up with me.” He started his nagging. “Do I have to teach you everything? It’s already the third day you’re here.” 

“It’s only the third day” I muttered. 

“What was that?” 

“Oh, nothing sir. I was just wondering how to get you that report.” I escaped from his gaze and question. 

“Call the head of HR. Aaron. Remember? Your favorite guy during the interview.” He said.

“Oh yes, I like him. I think Mr. Kwak is the kindest man in this company.” 

Hwang Minhyun squinted his already narrow eyes at me like he’s about to spit more fire. I caught his scary expression, I quickly placed the cup of tea on his desk and hurried up to my desk outside to make a call to Aaron’s office.  

 

“Hey, Jonghyun. Whaddup my favorite guy?” Aaron’s bright crisp voice was heard from the line. It was so reassuring. 

“Hi, good morning, Aaron. So… Mr. Hwang was asking me about the HR OPEX, I was wondering if you could help me with that?” 

“I’ve sent it to him yesterday evening. Did he not check his email again?” 

“I believe he didn’t.” I sighed, realizing that I just got scolded for nothing. 

“Cheer up Jonghyun, it’s only your third day here.”

“Right, it’s only my third day, isn’t it? But Mr. Hwang said I was stupid for not be able to keep up with him. It’s already the third day he said.” I poured it all to Aaron. 

“He’s a bit of a dick. But don’t make yourself small in front of him. Stand tall. We can’t be just good at everything in the beginning, can we? There is process.” 

“Yes, I agree with you, Aaron. Especially the dick part.” I scoffed. Chatting with Aaron was always fun. Until I saw a pair of cold scary eyes that were looking down on me from above. 

 

“Oh, Mr. Hwang!” I jolted off my seat. "Aaron, I’ll talk to you later okay?” and hung up the phone. 

“I see, you two are getting very close.” He said. “How about the report?” 

“Mr. Kwak said he had emailed them to you yesterday evening, sir.” 

Minhyun took out his phone to check it. “Hmmm…” he hummed while busily scrolling on his phone before leaving to his office. "That’s it?!” I complained inside my brain. He didn’t even say anything to me. 

 

“Jonghyun.” 

“Yes, sir?” I was expecting something. Like a sorry maybe, but I was hoping too much.

“Get my suit at the laundry now. I need it for the lunch meeting.” Mr. Mighty gave his order before closing his door again. Aaron’s voice was replayed inside my head, 

“He’s a dick.”

 

Day 30


Ring ring. 

“Good afternoon. Kim Jonghyun, finance director secretary speaking. May I help you?” I picked up the phone. 

“Jonghyun.” 

“Yes, Mr. Hwang?” 

“You don’t have to recite your greeting every time there’s a call. Especially if you could see on the phone that it’s from me. Save my time, Jonghyun.”

“Yes, sir. I’m sorry. Anything I can help for you sir?”  

“Do you know how to tie a necktie?” 

“Yes, sir. Of course. I read a lot in the books and sometimes I help Dongho with it.” 

“Do I need to know who this Dongho is?” 

“Oh, no sir. But he’s my flatmate sir. We live together.” 

“Good to know Jonghyun. Now come here to my office.” 

 

I stepped in to Minhyun’s office, he sat on the edge of his desk. A trace of annoyance can be seen on his face. His hair is a bit of a mess. He's not wearing his suit, just his usual white shirt attire and the first two buttons was opened. I approached him and he handed me the expensive looking navy coloured necktie that’s just freshly unboxed from its packaging. The box and the papers were scattered on his desk.

“Tie this on my neck.” He ordered. 

“What?” I was flustered. 

“The tie, Jonghyun. Put the tie on my neck.” 

“Oh, right. Yes, sir.” I snapped back to my senses. I held the necktie and stared at him, wondering how I should put it for him. First I fixed the two buttons on his shirt so I can put the necktie neatly. He flinched a little when my finger tips brushed on his neck when I was buttoning his shirt up. He stared at me closely but I couldn't read his expression. 

“Can you lower your head a little, sir? Or do you want to sit? Or should I get a chair from outside?” I stuttered. 

He sighed in his signature grumpy tone. He put his hands in his pockets and ducked his head a little so he could match my height. I gasped when he did it suddenly. His face was now right in front of my face. We were too close. I’d never seen him this close. He got sharp features and a very intimidating pair of eyes I must say. 

“Can you close your eyes? I found your eyes very intimidating, sir.” 

“Oh just put it on me, Jonghyun! I won’t eat you.” He grumbled at the too many requests. 

 

I couldn’t help and started putting the necktie around his neck, I accidentally pulled it too hard when I tried to balance the necktie's length. He lost his balance a little and got dragged even closer into my personal space, until our noses brushed onto each other a little in a split second. 

He seemed surprised and widened his eyes. I was surprised too, but I broke into giggles when I saw his face. Unlike his usual image, he looked very innocent when he’s surprised. 

“Why? What’s so funny?” asked Minhyun, he’s chasing my answer and the look in my eyes as I was trying to avoid his gaze. 

“Nothing, sir. I was just surprised that you could be a little cute sometimes.” I blurted out the words in my mind before I couldn’t even stop them. 

“I appreciate your compliment, but really, you could save it for yourself.” He said. I giggled. “Stop it. You shouldn’t laugh at your boss.”

"I’m sorry, sir.” I kept slipping a giggle while my both hands were busy making the perfect knot for his necktie.

“Stop giggling, Jonghyun. You sound silly.” Minhyun warned me. I held my laughter and we fell into silence again. Minhyun kept shifting his eyes from my face to my hands, watching my every move in tying his necktie. 

 

“I am quite surprised you don’t know how to tie a necktie.” I said. “Do you perhaps want to learn how to do it sir?” 

“Why? Are you planning to quit your job?” He asked sarcastically. 

“Oh? How did you know?” 

“You are?” He widened his eyes again. 

I couldn’t help but to burst into laughter again when I saw his expression. “I’m sorry... I was just kidding, sir. I’m… just..”

“Ha ha.. Very funny, Jonghyun.” He sounded unamused. 

The fact that I was his 5th secretary in just a span of a month must be bothering him. From what Aaron told me over lunch before, there was time when the whole HR department avoided his call. Everyone got so tired in looking for another new employee that would fit the secretary position for this finance director. 

The first secretary was quite potential until she accidentally put Minhyun's valuable document in a shredder due to exhaustion for being overworked, so he heartlessly fired her. The second secretary resigned by himself for personal health reason — which everyone knew that was a lie. 

The third secretary actually had a good chemistry with Minhyun, until he accidentally caught her having an affair with his married client. He couldn’t tolerate any indecency — I agree on this one. The fourth secretary resigned on her third day after she cried in the office for being called stupid by Minhyun. 

“And so now I’m the lucky number 5?” I asked him. “Should I be proud that I stay the longest here so far?” 

“You should. Not everyone has the luxury to assist me this long, Jonghyun.” 

“Well then I am honored, sir. Though I should keep another record for being called stupid by you on my first day.” I recalled. 

“Did I?” He looked at me in denial. I wanted to slap.. or maybe more like pinched his cheek, but I held myself of course. I must stay professional. 

 

Day 90

“Jonghyun, where’s my caramel macchiato?!” Minhyun asked me on the phone. 

“I’m on my way, sir. The cafe was a bit crowded. I’ll be there in 10 minutes.”

“Hurry, Jonghyun. I don’t have all day!” 

“You could have told me yesterday! Dammit.” I cursed unintentionally, thinking he already hung up the phone. He used to do that. 

 

“What was that?” 

“Oh I’m sorry, sir. I was talking to the… sandwich guy, sir. The sandwich guy. He didn’t tell me he closed for business today.” I almost choked on my own spit. 

“Hmm.. 8 minutes left, Jonghyun. Just hurry.”  

 

Day 180


Beep beep. Beep beep. Beep. Beep. 

“Ugh. Alright alright…” I groaned, tossing from my bed. Reaching my hand to find my phone at the bedside table. Incoming multiple kakaotalk messages from Hwang Minhyun woke me up on this beautiful Saturday morning. 


Minhyun: 

[Jonghyun, get me a new pair of sneakers. Preferably black or navy, size 275.]

[Bring them to my apartment before 11 am.]


Jonghyun: 

[You said I’m off duty this Saturday. I have made an appointment…]


Minhyun:

[Change of plan. What appointment?] 


Jonghyun: 

[I promised Dongho to go to his gym this morning.] 


Minhyun:

[This Dongho guy has a gym? What’s the name?]


Jonghyun: 

[Yes, he was a fitness trainer and now a baker. Tiger Gym.]

[So could I just send the sneakers by courier service, sir?]


Minhyun: 

[You can’t. Come.]


Jonghyun: 

[Okay… sir.] 

 

***



Jonghyun: 

[Hey. I’m sorry. Apparently this prick wants me to work on Saturday or I’m deaddd] 

[I really miss you tho]

[I want to play with our baby]


Minhyun: 

[Jonghyun…]


Jonghyun: 

[Yes sir? I’m on my way.]

[Oh shit] 

[I mean. I’m sorry sir.]

[I meant to send it to Dongho..] 

[but I just woke up so I wasn't myself]


Minhyun:

[I think you were very yourself just now.]

[On the side note, you have a baby?]


Jonghyun:

[No, sir. It was Dongho’s puppy. But I helped to raise it for a while when it was little. He named it Baby.] 

 

***

 

Jonghyun:

[Hey. I’m sorry. Apparently this prick wants me to work on Saturday or I’m deaddd]

[I accidentally send that to my boss instead of to our group chat. fml] 

[Anyway, sorry guys]

 

Dongho: 

[He deserved it.]

 

Minki:

[Oh fuck him Jonghyun! I never met him but I hate him already] 

[What about our plannnnn]

 

Jonghyun:

[I’ll call you soon when I’m done with him.] 

***


I arrived at Minhyun’s apartment at 10:45 AM with a big Nike shopping bag in my hand. I rang the bell and he came out in a training suit. He brought his car key. 

“Let’s go.” He said.

“Where to sir? I was just about to drop your shoes and leave.”

“Leave where, Jonghyun? I’m still not done with you.” 

 

Jonghyun:

[Guys…. TT—TT]

[I won’t make it today.]  

 

Minki:

[Bye, Jonghyun. Have fun with your boss.] 

[Dongho and I will just cuddle in front of TV] 



Day 365

“Congratulations, Jonghyun. You made it to the first year working under Director Hwang Minhyun.” Aaron said while touched my cheek with the cold can of coffee from the vending machine. I jumped a little from the bench outside the office. 

“Thank you, Aaron. I couldn’t have done it without you though.” 

“So how was it?” 

“Well, he’s still a dick but he’s softened a little.”

“A soft dick?” Aaron scoffed. I did too. 

“He’s quite chatty actually. Like when I drove him to the conference yesterday, he talked almost non-stop along the journey.”

“Glad you've met that side of him now. Minhyun is really talkative. Especially during school he would make a comment about everything. He wouldn’t shut up until the girls hated him.” Aaron told me. “I’m quite surprised that he would open up to you this quickly.”

 

“Really?” I was quite surprised.

"Yeah! You’re the first secretary who dared to talk back to him. At first I was afraid that you two would fight.” 

“I think he’s funny when he’s angry. You know his ears will turn very red and he becomes more clumsy.” I added. 

“He’s cute right, Jonghyun?” Aaron asked.

“I have to say... he is actually.” 

 

Beep beep

 

Minhyun:

[Jonghyun, join me for lunch.]

[Now.] 

***

“Speak about the devil…” I showed my phone to Aaron to see the message I got from Minhyun. “I gotta go now. He asked me for lunch.” 

“Be nice, Jonghyun. See ya around. And congratulation on your first anniversary working here.” Aaron waved at me. 

 

 

“What were you two talking about?” Minhyun asked the moment I stepped into his office.

“Sorry, sir?” I was confused. 

“Aaron. What are you talking about with Aaron?” He made his question clearer. 

“Oh it’s just about my career as your secretary. Since I've finally reached my first year working here.” 

“Hmmm… Is it?” 

“Wait, how did you know that I was with Aaron? Did you spy on me?” 

“That is so stupid, Jonghyun.” He squinted his eyes. "I saw you when I was getting a drink from the vending machine.” 

“Vending machine? You, sir? How?” I asked. Hwang Minhyun never drank anything from the vending machine. I had to run every morning to the cafe across the company to get his favorite coffee, milk tea or even grapefruit ade. 

“I was just curious about how it tasted since you seemed to like it so much.” 

“I don't like it that much but it's more like I don’t have a choice. But, do you like it?”

“No, I don’t.” He walked to grab his coat and impatiently gestured me to follow him. “Let’s go grab some burger. I’m starving.” 



Day 405

Jonghyun:

[Guyssss. I’m in Paris!]

[Like… FINALLY!] 

 

Minki:

[Shut up Jonghyun. Don’t show off.]

 

Jonghyun:

[Heuheuheuheu. You’re gonna love it here Minki.]

 

Dongho:

[Are the breads good?] 

 

Jonghyun:

[Dongho please. But yes actually.] 

[Take Minki here with you]

 

***

“Jonghyun, what are you doing? Let’s go.” Minhyun snapped me off my phone screen. I had to join him for two exhibitions and one seminar where he would do his presentation there. 

“The file is all ready on the desktop, sir. I’ve arranged everything according to your request.” I handed him the laptop. We’re sitting at an outdoor cafe across the hotel where we stayed during in Paris. The cafe was very calm, the breeze was good and kinda romantic at the same time. 

“What are you thinking?” Minhyun woke me from my daydream. 

“Hmm it’s just I’m very thankful to be in Paris. The city is really beautiful, the food and the coffee are very good, the air is very pleasant. I wish I could enjoy this moment with the person I love someday.” I said. 

“I see.” Minhyun stared at me like he took my words very seriously.

“But... it doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy this time, sir. For now, I am content with you.” I stuttered, I wanted to slap my own face sometimes for blabbering such nonsense. 

 

Day 406

“Sir? Good morning.” 

Minhyun turned under his blanket. “Jonghyun… hug me.” He whispered, it’s heavy and hoarse. 

“What?” 

“Hug me… I’m cold.” 

“Is he crazy?” 

 

—  to be continued. 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Day 406

Yesterday Minhyun gave me his room card, he asked me to wake him up at 4:30 AM sharp by all means, even if I had to drag him out of the bed by force. He planned to watch the sunrise right from the front of Sacré-Coeur basilica that was located on the top of Montmartre hill — the highest point in Paris.  

Room 809. I tapped on the card and the door was opened. The room was dark, cold and quiet. I approached his bed, reached to find the control panel on his bedside and turned on the lamp near his bed.

“Mr. Hwang, good morning.” I greeted him. I waited and I didn’t hear any response. I nudged the lump of blanket over his body. “Hello? Mr. Hwang? Wake up.” I called him again. 

“Minhyun! Wake up!” I yelled while tapping his shoulder repeatedly as the digital clock on the control panel had just turned to 4:30 AM. 

Minhyun finally turned under his blanket and mumbled “Jonghyun… h..ug me.” He whispered, his voice was still heavy and hoarse. 

“What?” 

“Hug me… I’m cold.” He mumbled again, his eyes were still closed.

“Is he crazy?” I thought. “Sir, wake up it’s already 4:30! You said you want to catch the sunrise.” 

“I can’t.. I’ll wake up... if you.. hu..g me first, Jonghyun.” said this big guy or my boss who was acting like a baby in front of me under his blanket. 

 

Minhyun’s words from yesterday were replayed in my head. “By all means, Jonghyun. Wake me up by all means. By all means.” 

“Oh whatever, it’s just a hug.” I thought. While standing, I bent down my body to Minhyun's bed and hugged him. 

He groaned a little when he felt half of my weight pressing down on his chest. My left hand wrapped around the area between his shoulder and neck, while my right hand softly tapped on his back.

“Wake up. It’s already 4:30” I said softly near his ears. In contrast with the coldness of his room, he felt so warm and sturdy yet soft… and he smelled good. It might be his shampoo or something. I felt like drunk. It's dangerous. 

I woke up since 4 AM and I didn’t have enough sleep last night. The warmth when hugging this man. I meant my boss, I meant… — started to drift me away in drowsiness. This was bad, I tried to fight it but I just couldn’t win. 

 

“Jonghyun. Wake up.” I heard a voice. 

“You’re heavy…” I felt two light taps on my back. But I still didn’t wanna wake up, it’s too warm and comfortable. I wrapped something in my arms tighter. 

“Hey, Jonghyun.”  

“Stop.. squeezing.” I wondered what that voice meant by squeezing. I wasn't squeezing anything.

“Kim! Jonghyun!” Minhyun’s loud voice woke me up. 

 

“Uuuuuuh…” I groaned and stretched my body slowly. “Wait. Minhyun’s voice?” I thought in my head. Slowly aware of the situation, I tilted my head up and I found Minhyun’s eyes were staring at me intensely. 

“Whoa!” I jolted up from my sleep position “I am so sorry Minhyun. I mean, sir. I.. am.. so sorry! I didn’t mean to fall asleep here.” I stuttered “Wait, what time is it now?” 

“9:12 AM, Jonghyun. As someone who didn’t mean to fall asleep, you did sleep so well here.” said Minhyun in his signature emotionless tone. 

I couldn’t gather my energy to escape from his bed and I didn’t know how my legs could end up trapped under the duvet, with his legs. 

“You even snored.” He added. 

“Wha.. what time did you wake, sir?” I turned to him.

“Around 6.” 

“Why didn’t you wake me then? We could still have caught the sunrise.” I unintentionally let out a protest. 

“Pardon. What was that?” He raised his voice in objection. “There’s a big baby sleeping on top of my body! And he’s so heavy, I thought I was experiencing a sleep paralysis.” 

“You could shout my name. Like what you usually do!” I didn’t back down. 

“I don’t like to shout in the morning when my throat is still parched.” Minhyun cleared his throat. "Now explain. How did you end up on top of me, Jonghyun?” He asked while placing his hand on my upper arm.  

“You... asked me to.” I said. 

He raised his eyebrow, “I asked you to lie on top of me?” 

“Not exactly. Well, when I tried to wake you up, you kept mumbling Jonghyun hug me.. Jonghyun hug me I’m cold.” I impersonated his hoarse voice from earlier. “Then you said you couldn’t wake up, if I didn’t hug you first. I was panicked as the clocked had hit 4:30 and…” My eyes were shaking.

“And? Go on…” He pushed further.

“And then I fell asleep on your bed, while hugging you..” I lowered my voice but Minhyun definitely heard it. 

“Why exactly?”

“Because the room was so cold and here was so… warm, it made me sleepy…” I said. His eyes were fixed on mine, but I couldn’t read his expression. Nervous and awkward, I protested more, “Hey. It’s not my fault if I fell asleep. It is natural for a man to fall asleep when he’s sleepy.” I pulled my shoulder off his fingers, escaping his touch. “Don’t judge me.” 

“I didn’t judge.” He scratched the back of his neck.  

 

“But I am curious, why didn’t you wake me up?” I asked him. "You’re way bigger than me, you definitely can push me away.” 

“I don’t want to.” 

“Why?” 

Minhyun leaned back to look at me in the eyes with his usual smirk, but he still ignored my question. He got out of the duvet and woke up from the bed. “Order us some room service breakfast, Jonghyun. I’m going to take a shower.” He ordered and walked away. 

I stretched and sank in my face in the duvet once before getting out of the bed to do my duty. Unintentionally, I could still smell Minhyun's scent all over it. I was doomed, but strangely I felt light like it’s gonna be a good day. 

 

Day 407 

"Jonghyun, wake up. Let's go watch the sunrise." Minhyun's annoying voice was the first thing I heard on the phone in the dark of the dawn. 

"Sir, can you go by yourself? I think I'm just gonna pass and sleep." I said, half asleep. 

"But you're already awake now. Just meet me at the lobby in 15 minutes." He hung up. I dunked my face into the pillow in frustration before dragging myself to the shower.

 

"You said today is my free day." Still half sleepy, I complained in the cab. "I don't get it. I see sunrise everyday when I go to work, why do I have to see more sunrise here?" 

"It is your free day, Jonghyun." Minhyun said. "You're free to join me watch the sunrise." Nonchalantly. I almost couldn't stop my hand from hitting his head that's always full of nonsense. 

 

We hiked to the top off Montmartre Hill, and waited in front of Sacré-Coeur basilica for the sunrise — where we could view the city of Paris from above. Minhyun was right, the moment the sun started shining on the city a little by little, the view became so breathtakingly beautiful. It's still carved in my head until now.

I could hear Minhyun hum a song as he was enjoying the view. He put his arm around my shoulders and said "To our brighter future, Jonghyun." while facing to the sunrise.

"Where did you learn that from, sir!" I cringed upon hearing his cheesiness. 

"I watched a youth drama last night." 

"Well, I hope I'd be the last person on Earth who heard that, because that was just so corny."  I said, slowly escaping his grip on my shoulders.

"You would.." He mumbled softly. 

"I'm sorry. What did you say, sir?"

"Nothing." He said.  

 

Day 410 

It’s our last day in Paris and it happened to be my birthday. Our flight would be later at night. Minhyun seemed more nervous than usual — which was strange because the seminar was over and he did great. 

“Mr. Hwang, perhaps do you need anything that I can help you with? You seem so nervous.” I asked. 

“No, Jonghyun. I’m fine.” He sat down, shaking his legs. 

“Are you expecting someone this morning?” 

“Yes.” 

“Who, sir?” 

“Just someone. You don’t need to know.” He seemed annoyed now.

“Prick.” I cursed inside. I decided not to pay him any more attention and got immersed in this premium mobile game I had downloaded just now as a gift to myself. 

 

“Jonghyun, wait here okay. I’d be right back in about an hour.” Minhyun suddenly ordered while walking out of the suite. 

“Yes, sir. Take your time.” I was about to rise from my seat to assist him with the door, but he gestured me not to bother with it. 

 

About an hour and a half had passed but I wasn’t aware, as this new mobile game was really cool. Until my concentration was shattered by the incoming call on my phone. It’s Minhyun. 

“Hello, sir?” 

“Jonghyun, can you get down here to the lobby.” My boss said over the line. It wasn’t a question. 

“Okay, sir. I’m on my way.” 

 

Minhyun gave me a signal to follow him outside into the cab. 

“Where are we going, sir?” I asked. 

“Lunch.” He said, still seemed uneasy. 

“But it’s still 11.”

“Early lunch then.” 

 

We had lunch at a really stylish yet elegant restaurant in the city. The steak was too unforgettable. If only he took me there for dinner, I would have ordered their exquisite wine selection too. Minhyun was being nice to me, which was a little scary. Last time he was being nice, I had to travel all over the country for a whole week, to manage all the finance reports in every branch office. 

Today seemed like an exception. I'd never spent such an enjoyable time like this with him in my whole career working with him. He was even nicer than before, very friendly, all smiles and giggles, and a little too aware of my little details — like the colour of my socks, the size of my shoes, my watch, even to the length of my fingers. 

I was almost choked on the baked potato skin when he suddenly asked me to compare my fingers to his fingers. 

 

After lunch and shopping, I got back to my room at the hotel in the afternoon to rest a little and repack my luggage. I must fit all these new shirts and shoes I got from Mr. Hwang as a gift into my luggage. I thought it’s my birthday gift, but he said it’s an appreciation for doing my best as his secretary on this work trip. 

When I entered my room, I saw a small paper bag on the top of my bed with a card. I checked and it was a watch. 

It’s simple yet very elegant and sophisticated. The dark colour reminded me of the outer space, like the universe. There’s a little moon icon next to an alphabet J engraved on the back of its case when I flipped it. 

I opened the small envelope in the paper bag and there’s a simple  one page card in it. I read it carefully and for the first time in my life, I almost had a cardiac arrest. 

 

“Happy birthday, Kim Jonghyun. Would you let me stay in your heart? 

— Hwang Minhyun.” 

 

— to be continued. 

Chapter Text

Day 412

"Kim Jonghyun.” Minhyun called my name when I was tip-toeing to my desk in the morning.

“S.. sir.” I was startled. It was still 8 AM. I didn’t expect he’d be here in the office this early.

“I need the Paris exhibition summary.”

“Yes, sir. Be ready in 30 minutes.” I said. Thank goodness I had finished most of it during our flight back to Seoul.

Honestly I decided to work for a reason, to avoid Minhyun. Partly I was afraid he was going to chase me with more questions and for the rest I was scared of what I would do if I looked him in the eyes.

 

 

 

Flashback when in Paris

“Did you get my present?” Minhyun asked me in the elevator when we went down to the hotel lobby to check out and head to the airport.

“Oh, yes sir. Thank you very much. It seems expensive.”

“Have you opened it?”

“Not yet, sir. I’m sorry.” I lied. “I put it in my luggage with all other stuff right away and went to rest.”

Minhyun hummed and darted his eyes to the floor. I could feel the awkwardness was filling the air. I really wasn't ready for this.

 

***

 

 

Even until today, I still avoided to make a direct eye contact with him when we talked earlier.

“Jonghyun.”

“Yes, sir.” still dodging his eyes, while placing the exhibition summary document on his desk. I didn’t dare to take a look at his hairstyle or pay attention to what necktie he’s wearing today, but damn I couldn’t avoid his scent. It was so pleasant, I thought I was going to blush.

“Do you like my present?” His gaze was chasing mine.  

“N.. no, sir.”

 

Taken aback by my answer, he raised his eyebrows.

“I mean. No, I haven’t opened the present, sir. So I don’t know yet if I would like it or not. I was too tired yesterday. I apologize, sir.” I blabbered to cover my mistake.

“Hmm… It’s fine. But why do you seem like a different person today?”

“Sorry, sir?”

“Yeah, you act differently around me today. Did I make you uncomfortable?” He pointed at how I stood all stiff and awkwardly in front of him.

“Oh, not at all, sir. Everything is fine. Maybe I’m still a little tired from the trip.”

 

“Really?” Minhyun stood up to approach me. “You want a half day?” placing his hand on my forehead, trying to feel my temperature. I completely stayed still.

“You look a bit pale.” He observed my face carefully, reading my expression. I flinched and instantly avoided his eyes the moment our eyes met for a split second.


“You read my card, don’t you?” Minhyun shot me down with his question. The question I had been trying to avoid for the past few days. 

I froze. My brain was rapidly raking through tons of possible reasons that I could use to defend myself against his question. But it's useless, Minhyun had taken all of my armor off. Nothing’s left on me to try to deny it.

“I… I am just confused.” I tried to be honest. “Until this moment, you’re my boss. What would people in this company think about you? About us! How about your clients, your business partners. I’m just your secretary. This is inappropri..”

“Don’t think about others and be honest to yourself first, Jonghyun.” Minhyun cut my words and gently tilted up my face so I could meet his eyes. I’d never seen a pair of genuine eyes that could gaze so deeply like this into mine. He’s so dazzling, gentle and heartwarming.

"Do you hate the idea?” He asked me carefully. "Me, holding your hands, taking you to places, kissing you everyday, protecting you with all of me..”  

“I… don’t..” I could feel butterflies were swirling around in my stomach when I answered that question.

“I don’t hate it either, Jonghyun.” Minhyun's gaze turned even softer by every sentence. Like I was the only person that was worth melting for. “Remember that day when you asked me why I didn’t want to wake you up to watch the sunrise? I’ll tell you why now.”  

I gulped.

 

“I like holding you in my arms.” He said. “I treasure every second of it.” He continued. “To me, you’re already a part of me. You understand the hidden sides in me, you complete me, and you may not realize this, but I feel peace when you’re around. It’s almost inexplicable.” He paused.

“Now. I’ve done my part. It’s your turn.” Minhyun slowly directed me to the edge of his desk so I could sit down for a while. He matched my eyes level when he asked, "What do you think of me?”

“Wonderful… sir..” I was still in a daze. Everything is so unreal, it's the first time in my life I’d ever felt this wanted.

Minhyun seemed confused with my answer.

“I.. am new to this kind of situation.” I started to explain. "I hate you sometimes. But I admit, there were also times when I couldn't get you out of my head.” I paused for a while. “Countless times, I tried to kill all the improper thoughts and feelings I have for you so I could remain professional on this job.” I anxiously rubbed the back of his hands with my thumbs, squeezing his hands.

“And I don’t know if I would be good at this…” I was very nervous, afraid to jump off the cliff yet unwilling to climb back to the starting position.

My heart told me that I might regret it, if I lost him this time. I looked him in the eyes and packed up my courage. “But... Yes. I want you to stay, sir.”

Minhyun instantly swooped me in a tight hug upon hearing my conclusion. “Thank you, Jonghyun.” He tenderly whispered in my ear while squeezing my body tightly. “Thank you.” Feeling safe and assured, I closed my eyes and put my arms around his shoulders, holding him back closely.

“Oh, and happy belated birthday!” He immediately planted a kiss on my temple, turning my face all flushed.

I pushed his chest away a little, “By the way…” His arms were still lingering around my waist. “It’s my first time to be in a relationship, sir. I might be awkward in many things.”

“It’s okay, Jonghyun. I’ll teach you everything.” Minhyun chuckled and pulled me in again to his chest. I loved the vibration of the warm laughter from his chest that’s transferred through my cheek.

“I wish you’re this helpful to me on the first day I worked here as your secretary.” I said.

Minhyun chuckled again, while caressing the back of my head. “So do you like my present?”

“Very.” I answered.


 

Day 420

“You’re dating your boss?”

“What?! How did you know, Dongho?!!”

“I saw your screen just now. You just put a heart emoji in a text that’s sent to Mr. Hwang Minhyun…”  Dongho said, while placing the coffee mug on the dining table.

“But you hate him!” Minki suddenly appeared from behind Jonghyun’s back, chimed in while grabbing Dongho’s mug to taste his coffee.

“Well, not anymore.. I mean, I still hate him as a boss, but as a boyfriend, I like him.” I said. Dongho and Minki looked at me with their half judging expression, like they’re trying decode me.

“Don’t look at me like that. It’s complicated.”

“But I think it’s not that complicated, Jonghyun.” said Dongho. “You see him everyday and you’re always together. It’s natural for you two to develop some feelings.” Dongho was always wise and full of understanding.

“Just be safe, okay? I know you never dated anyone.” Minki added. “If he ever pulled some kind of trick to take advantage of you, I swear I’m gonna break his b..” Minki made a crushing motion with his hands. Dongho patted him on his shoulder, telling him that everything would be okay.


Day 430

“So when are you going to introduce me to your boyfriend?” Aaron’s voice snapped me out of my focus. I was focused on typing a report on my computer until I didn’t hear someone’s coming to my office.

“Hey, Aaron. Sorry, I didn’t hear you. I was too focused with this report. What was it?”

“Boyfriend. When are you going to introduce me to him?” Aaron repeated his question. I tried to dodge his question but partly I knew that it would be a useless attempt.

Aaron was always quick and sharp. He’s the head of HR department who studied psychology and dealt with human behaviour everyday. He could simply figure it out that I had a new boyfriend just by looking at my hairstyle. He said I usually let it a bit messy but that day I styled it up a bit. He could even guess the brand of my hairspray.

 

“Don’t forget that clumsy expression of yours, Jonghyun.” Aaron said while pointing at my face. “How long do you want to hide it from me. Come on, spill. How he looks like? Is he handsome? Is he rich?”  

“Ok ok…” I said, giving up. “Actually, you already knew him.”

“Oh? Go on… Did I ever meet him?”

“You’ve met him a lot.”

“Where? Like here in the office? Is he from my department? Kim Mingyu?” Aaron dug deeper, sitting on the edge of my desk, getting all excited for the gossip.

“What? No! Why would you think it’s Mingyu?” 

“Well, I saw you two often went home together after work.”

“It’s just sometimes. We live nearby and he knows all the good restaurants around my home.” I explained. “But it’s not him. He’s a good friend.”  

“Who is it then?” Aaron started to tease me by poking his finger on my waist. Feeling ticklish, I giggled a bit too loudly.

“Who is it? Who is it? Tell me, Jonghyun.” He continued to joke around.

 

“It’s me, Mr. Kwak.” Minhyun who just got back from his meeting suddenly walked in from the outside, “Now get back to work. You’re bothering my boyfriend.” He added, while nonchalantly passing my desk, straight to his office and closed his door.

Aaron was dumbfounded and went quiet for a few seconds to digest the new information. “Oh my God, I didn’t see that coming. Wait. So your boyfriend is Hwang Minhyun?” Aaron turned back his head to me to confirm it. “Like, really? That cold-blooded bastard Hwang Minhyun?!”

“Hey! Don’t say that.” I disagreed.

“Oh my God you’re even siding with him now. Oh God, Jonghyun! We have to talk about this over dinner! I bet it would be very interesting.” Aaron said.

“He can’t! He already had plans with me.” Minhyun’s shouted from his office to interrupt Aaron’s plan. Aaron rolled his eyes upon hearing his friend’s objection.

“Oh, shut up, Minhyun. Who are you? His mother?” Aaron complained, barging in to Minhyun’s office to tease his longtime buddy. I followed him from behind. “You two owe me the full story of this okay? So dinner with me tomorrow night. It's on me.” He added, all hyped and excited.

“Congratulations, Minhyun, you won a jackpot. And I’m so sorry for you, Jonghyun, you have to date this guy.” Aaron winked at me playfully while exiting Minhyun's office, with Minhyun glared at him from his seat.

 

— to be continued

Chapter Text

Day 440 

I enjoy the quietness after smiling and socializing with people all day at work. To be able to sit with a good accompany or just alone was such a healing for me. Minhyun was the opposite, he was ridiculously talkative once I got to know him. From outside, most people would consider him as a lone wolf because he rarely talked much. His sentences were always straight-forward, sharp, to the point and strong. But in private, when there were just two of us, he acted more like a cute giant puppy.

“Jonghyun, why are you so quiet? Are you having a toothache?” Minhyun said with his crescent moon eyes and a warm smile on his face. It’s late in the evening and we’re having our dinner at the corner of this cozy Japanese restaurant. Minhyun placed his left hand under his chin, resting his head while his right hand was gently tapping my cheek. Fingers were played, like he’s pressing the tuts on a piano.

“I observe that you’re more talkative at work, especially when you’re with the people from the HR.” He continued.

“I’m comfortable this way.” I leaned back, escaping his touch, feeling reluctant to explain more. “Where is our food? I’m starving. Should I call the waiter?” I tried to change the topic.

“Come on. Tell me your stories, little puppy.” He playfully pinched my cheek a little.

“Ackh!” I whined. “We’ve seen each other all day, sir. What more do you need to know?”

“Tell me about your childhood, the things you like, or anything that you usually talk about with your friends.”

“My childhood was nice. I like playing games and sleeping.” I answered. “I talk just about anything with my friends.”

“And?” Minhyun fixed his eyes on mine, expecting longer answers.

“And that’s it.” I turned my head to the menu. I could feel Minhyun’s expression slowly turned into a pouty one.

“That’s it? That’s all? Should we go home now Jonghyun? Since you have finished all your stories.” He pretended to about to stand up from his seat.

“No!” I quickly leaned forward to catch his arm across the table. “The food is still not served yet.” I bursted out. Minhyun scanned my face, demanded more explanation than the obvious ridiculous answer. I couldn’t think of anything beside “And also, I haven’t kissed you today.” I added spontaneously, feeling all embarrassed with my own answer.

Minhyun started to grin like a mischievous fox. “I get it, Jonghyun. I will sit for now okay, let go of my arm.” He scoffed. I let go and he held my hand in his hand. “You have soft hands.” while smiling at me.

 

 

Day 445

“Jonghyun, get me a cup of Americano and an Iced Vanilla Latte, half sugar. Venti. Both.” Minhyun said as he’s passing my desk to his room.

“Vanilla latte, sir?” 

“Yes.”

“Not the usual Grapefruit Ade, sir?”

“No, Jonghyun. You’ve heard me.” He said. I nodded and went to the cafe downstairs to get his orders.

 

(15 minutes later)

“Excuse me, sir. Here are your drinks.” I stepped into his office while Minhyun was checking some reports on his computer.

“Damn, he looks good.” I thought to myself, looking at him under the lights of the afternoon’s sun that’s piercing through the window glass. His shirt sleeves were rolled to his upper arms and his necktie was loose, I felt like planting a quick kiss on his neck, too bad we're still at work. 

“Thank you, Jonghyun. And wipe that drool off your face.” He said, half-joking, while sipping the Americano. “You can have the Vanilla Latte by the way, it’s for you.” He added. "From now on, don't drink from the vending machine. Buy any drink you want when I ask you to buy mine." He smiled at me. 

"What about cake? Can I buy some cheesecake too?" I teased him. "I mean, it's not everyday my boss is being this generous." I said while sipping the refreshing Iced Vanilla Latte.

"Yes, Jonghyun. You can buy cheesecake, or sandwich, or anything." Minhyun approached me. "It's a privilege to have a rich boss as your boyfriend, isn't it?" He wiped a bit of coffee on the corner of my lips with his hand. "Careful, you're wearing white shirt." He said. 

 

 

Day 450

“Hello. Aaron! What’s this on my desk?!” I called Aaron immediately after unwrapping the mysterious box I received on my desk this morning. It was from Aaron, I recognized his handwriting from the cheeky message inside: Have fun, be safe.

“It’s a box of condoms, Jonghyun. Can’t you read?” Aaron said coolly.

“I mean, I know what it is, but I mean what is this for?” 

“To protect you from infection or any sexual transmitted disease, Jonghyun. Did you skip sex education class in school?”

“We’re not at that stage yet, Aaron! And I prefer things to run slowly but steadily.” I tried to feign. 

“Yeah, right. I could sense the high sexual tension between you two during our dinner last time, Jonghyun. Don’t deny it and don’t be shy. It’s natural, when you guys are so in love with each other.” Aaron giggled.

I cleared my throat. “Anyway, while we’re on this topic. Is this really his size?” I was curious.

“It is. Why?”

“He can’t be this enormous. It’s like a giant snake.” I protested. “How can you be so sure? Did you see his?”

“Dude, please. I’ve been his buddy for years. It is really his size, Jonghyun.” Aaron said. “You’re a lucky man.” 

I gulped and felt so nervous, yet curious at the same time. But Aaron is straight and it would be weird to ask him further about these things.

 

“What is that?” Minhyun’s voice suddenly shocked me while I was still in the middle of wondering. I almost dropped my phone. “Why you always appeared without notice!” I stuttered in annoyance, while trying to quickly tidy up the box wrapper and its inappropriate for office hours content on my desk, my hands were all trembling.

Minhyun quickly caught the box in his eyes and snatched it from my grip. He observed it for a few seconds before staring back at me.

“Is this from Aaron?” He asked. I nodded.

“That bastard.” He mumbled. “You can ask me about this. I’ll guide you when it’s time.” His tone changed to the softer side when he spoke to me. “Besides, that is not my size.” Minhyun returned the box to me, gesturing to just throw it away.

“What is your size then?” I foolishly slipped out a question.

“You’ll find out soon, Jonghyun.” He smiled and quickly kissed my forehead before leaving to his room.

 

Day 472

“Good morning, Director Hwang.” I stood up to greet Minhyun when he stepped into the office as usual. 

“Morning, baby.” said Minhyun while winking at me with both his eyes. That man still couldn’t wink. I wide-opened my eyes, checking my surroundings. Afraid someone might overhear it from outside.

“Oh come on. Relax, Jonghyun. No one is gonna hear that.” He approached my desk. “Can’t I call my boyfriend as baby?” He looked at me playfully while slowly tracing down from my shoulder to my left arm with his finger, continued with a smooth attempt to tickle my waist.

“Wait!” I stopped him before he did. “I’m just a little cautious, sir. We’re at work now.” Though I really wanted to jump, hug and lean my head on that broad shoulders of his, I remained calm and professional.

“Speaking of that. I noticed that you never call me dearly, you’re always too formal with me. Even during our dates.” Minhyun folded his arms in front of his chest. 

“But you never either.” I said.

“I just called you baby, Jonghyun. Did you forget already?”

I cringed my eyes upon hearing his argument. 

 

“No baby?” Minhyun asked anxiously. “Hmm.. what about, honey?”

“You sound like my father.” 

“I don’t wanna sound like your father, sweetheart.”

“And now you sound like my mother, sir.”

Minhyun grumbled as I kept on teasing his effort. I smiled and softly caressed his hand to soothe his vexation. 

“Oh don’t give me that look, Jonghyun. I don’t know what I’d do to you tonight.”

“Tonight?” I asked. “Do we have plans tonight, sir?” I was unsure. 

“Kim Jonghyun, baby, do you forget my birthday?” 

I checked my calendar and yes it was marked today. “Shit. How could I miss this!” I muttered. 

“I am really, really sorry…” I said. “The thing is, my mom and my sisters are in Seoul right now, and I’ve already promised to take them out for dinner this evening.” I explained carefully while paying extra attention to Minhyun’s changing expression. 

“Well there’s nothing we can do then. There’s still next year anyway.” Minhyun replied. I could feel the disappointment in his tone. He forced a smile, before going back to his office. 

 

Ring ring.

“Yes, sir?” I picked up the phone.

“Jonghyun, call Grand Hyatt. Cancel my reservation.” Minhyun flatly said over the phone. “Both.. The restaurant and the suite.” He added and hung up the phone. 

 

— to be continued.

Chapter Text

Day 475

“Here’s your requested document, Mr. Hwang.”

“Thank you. You’re excused,” I said urgently to dismiss my secretary, no, my boyfriend out of the room after he delivered a document. 

“Is he your secretary?” Daniel asked me, right after Jonghyun left the room.

What I had predicted eventually came true. Kang Daniel — the director of an insurance company that’s already in a long term partnership with this company, had a meeting with me today. Daniel is a good businessman, we used to play golf together. But despite his gentle demeanor, he’s also famous for his reputation as a player. 

“He’s cute. I gotta ask for his number,” 

“Please, don’t,” I said.

“Why? Is he taken?” 

“I heard.”

“He’s already married?”

“No.”

“Then it’s all good,” he scoffed. 

Darn my logic for always calculating everything first. I should have just said yes. But by answering yes, it would trigger Daniel to ask me more questions. Since we started this relationship, Jonghyun and I agreed that it’s best not to let many people know about it, as we both like privacy. 

Daniel headed out of my office after the meeting was over. He bumped into Jonghyun at his desk who was about to stand up, to bow him farewell. 

“Hey, have we met before?” Daniel asked first. 

“Good afternoon. I believe we haven’t, sir.”

“Hmm... I didn’t see you when I came in earlier too. How long have you been working here by the way?” 

“Around a year, sir.”

“My name is Kang Daniel, I’m the director of Connect Insurance.” Daniel offered him a handshake. “And you are?”    

“Nice to meet you, Mr. Kang. My name is Kim Jonghyun, the secretary of Director Hwang Minhyun. Here is my business card.” 

I saw Jonghyun hand his business card to Daniel. I pinched the bridge of my nose. Jonghyun innocently spilled all the information that I tried to hide. Yet, I couldn’t blame him. It’s all my fault. 

I dashed to my desk to call Jonghyun in. He accepted the call and excused himself from Daniel. I saw the smirk on Daniel’s face when he saw the back side of Jonghyun. It almost drove me crazy.

 

“What are you doing!” I raised my voice. 

“Sorry, sir?” 

“Why did you give your business card to Daniel?!” 

“I can’t give him my business card?” Jonghyun was confused. “You always said business card is the first basic etiquette in business.” 

He stared back at me, his rounded eyes were like questioning all my conscience, “What the hell was wrong with you?” 

I got back to my senses. I held him closer to my chest. “I’m sorry,” gently to his ears. “I’m sorry, Jonghyun. I was just anxious.”

“This is a new side of you. I’ve never seen you this jealous.” 

“It was just.. Daniel is interested in you.” 

“Don’t worry. I won’t trade you for anyone,” said Jonghyun, while rubbing my back. “I’m already content with you, sir.” He smiled at me. I found him so adorable, he might not know that everyday he made me fall deeper and deeper.

“Ow! Ow! Let me go!” he whined, when I was squeezing him more.

“No. You’re too adorable. You'd be stuck with me for a long long time.”

  

Day 476 

“Stop touching your necktie,” Aaron nudged my shoulder when we’re having a lunch break over a meeting in a restaurant nearby. "You look dumb!" 

“It’s my necktie. I can do whatever I want with it,” I objected, touching it again in purpose, to annoy Aaron. 

“It’s a gift from your boyfriend. I know you’re just showing it off.” Aaron wiggled his eyebrows, throwing his glance at Jonghyun. "Nice choice though, Jonghyun. You gave him the easy-to-wear one. It's perfect for this giant fool right here who still doesn't know how to tie his own necktie." 

“Wait. How did you know that it's from Jonghyun?” 

“Tell him, Jonghyun. Tell this fool about how sharp I am as a man,” said Aaron. Jonghyun refused to pick a side and just laughed at us. 

“You’re more like nosy.” I said. 

 

The evening.

“Alright. We’re here. See you tomorrow,” I said, pulling over, dropping my boyfriend off at his place. 

“You really like that necktie, don’t you?” Jonghyun chuckled when he saw me fixing my necktie again. 

“I do. I will even wear it again tomorrow.” 

“Oh, please don’t, you have an important meeting tomorrow with the board members,” said Jonghyun. “Wear something nicer, that was just a cheap necktie.” 

“It’s a gift from you,” I objected. “It’s the first time I received a gift from you on my birthday.” 

“No, it’s not. I gave you a box of chocolates last year,” he stared back at me, checking the truth in my eyes. “You just threw it away, didn’t you?” 

“I didn’t.”

“Really? What were the flavors then?” 

“Hazelnut..”

“And?” he asked. 

“Dark chocolate..?” 

“Wrong!” said Jonghyun, hitting my thigh. I could see the fire in his eyes. “They’re all milky chocolate!” he corrected. “Your taste buds are like kids! You don’t like bitter food, you can’t eat spicy. You only eat the sweet stuff.”

“Sweet stuff. Like you?” I grinned.

“Of course,” he said. We laughed it off, knowing how dumb I was for even trying to lie. 

 

“Please, just wear something else tomorrow,” he continued. “It’s embarrassing.” 

“Why?” 

“Because you gave me such an expensive watch for my birthday,” he mumbled. “But I only managed to get you a necktie from a 24/7 shop.” He threw his eyes to his own feet, avoiding my gaze. 

After his previous workplace went bankrupt, Jonghyun had a hard time to find a new job for months. He’d been paying his loan monthly with all the savings he had left. He had to give up his apartment and moved in with his best friend — Dongho, so he could survive everyday.

I held his hand. “It’s okay. Don’t feel too bad about it. I know your condition.” I caress his cheek. “Besides, it’s me, Jonghyun. I can make cheap stuff look expensive.”

“You’re right, this colour does look very good on you,” he said, tracing his fingers on my necktie, before suddenly he leaned forward to plant a kiss on my lips.

“I love you,” he whispered to me

Still can’t get enough, I pulled him closer, digging for a second kiss. It’s more intense this time, he sucked and nibbled on my lower lips like I did, I could taste his lips, his tongue, and everything.

I felt the heat in his mouth and how we pushed and pulled like magnets. Grunts and moans were heard in between as we’re enjoying our kiss, it’s almost dangerous. The world was like spinning around us, yet neither of us wanted to stop until our last breath.

 

We finally pulled apart after we’re running out of breath and before our bodies arose in their natural reactions.

“Wow. Your lips are all swollen,” Jonghyun said, almost breathlessly.

“It’s your fault. It’s like I was sucked by a vacuum cleaner,” I replied, rubbing my lips, still feeling the sore. He hit me three times while giggling.

“I just.. followed what you did okay?” he protested. “It’s late. Quickly go home now and drive safely, okay?” he patted my cheek. I sighed and nodded helplessly.

Too bad there’s an important meeting early tomorrow morning. The universe knows what we would do when we had all the time to ourselves.

 

Day 477   

“Dongho, this is Hwang Minhyun. My boss,” Jonghyun said. I cleared my throat, staring at him, wishing him to fix his introduction. 

“And.. also my boyfriend,” he chuckled. 

“Oh, yes, hello, Mr. Hwang Minhyun. Nice to meet you. I’m Kang Dongho. Jonghyun’s friend.” 

“Yes, I’ve heard a lot about you from Jonghyunnie.”

“You only told him the good things, right?” Dongho asked Jonghyun.

“Of course. You’re my only best friend in this world.” Jonghyun ran to give him a hug. I knew I didn't need to be jealous but I still couldn’t stop it from showing on my face, so I just stood there and smiled at the two while they're jumping around.

“Come on in, Minhyun.” Jonghyun realized and quickly put his arm around my shoulder, wanting to drag me inside, to his room.

“Wait, wait..” I said while tidying up my shoes first at the entrance before following him. 

 

After looking around for months, Jonghyun finally managed to rent a small studio apartment that was closer to the office. And today he would move his items from Dongho’s apartment to his own place. As a good boyfriend, I volunteered to help.

“Wow, you’re pretty neat,” I approved when I saw his room.

“Maybe because I don’t have many stuff.”

“Is this your bed?”

“No, that’s Minki’s. I sleep here on the floor.”

“Who is Minki?”

“He’s also my best friend,” he said. “He’s still at work right now. I’ll introduce him to you next time.”

 

“Jonghyun, catch this!” suddenly Dongho threw something over to Jonghyun. He missed to catch it and it landed right in front of me.

“It’s your boxer. It’s already dry,” said Dongho before leaving.

 

“Mickey Mouse?” I picked it up. It was a cute red boxer.

“Give it to me!” Jonghyun dashed and snatched it off my hands.

“No need to be shy, Jonghyun. It’s cute.”

 

“Oh he has lots of Pokemon boxers too,” said Dongho again, while throwing in another yellow boxer from outside the room to Jonghyun. He managed to catch it this time, and quickly shoved it in his suitcase.

“Why would you tell him that!” Jonghyun whined, his face was a little red. Dongho just laughed and left again.

 

We finished tidying up all Jonghyun’s stuff for in less than an hour. He really didn’t have many stuff. It made me sad that he had been living this way. He didn’t even have a bed. Yet he’s always hard-working, always positive and managed to do his job wonderfully in assisting me.

“Jonghyun, do you have a bed at your new place?” I asked him, while driving him to his new apartment.

“Yeah. The owner provides his old sleeping mat, so I would just use it.”

“What if I just buy you a bed?” I offered.

“Oh, please no. That would be too expensive and unnecessary. Besides, you’ve given me so many things.”

“It’s not only for you,” I said. Jonghyun looked at me with a confused expression. “It’s for me too,” I continued. “You know… When I need to stay the night at your place.”

“Oh…”

 

to be continued

Chapter Text

“Good morning, Mr. Hwa...” I paused right when I noticed there was another presence in his office. They turned their gaze to me who was standing still at my spot. I signaled Minhyun that he needed to sign this document in my hands. 

“Later, Jonghyun,” said my boss. “Oh and please cancel my next meeting. I need some privacy,” he gave his order. 

“Ok, sir.” I obeyed, leaving the two with their own business. Just a few inches after I stepped out of his office, I overheard the other guy asking Minhyun behind the closed door.

“Your secretary?” 

“Hm,” my boyfriend hummed in response.

“Does he remind you of me?” said the other guy. 

“Wait! What?!” I couldn’t believe my own ears. I leaned closer to the door, trying to listen more of their conversation. 

Minhyun still did not answer. “Oh come on! Answer it boss! I swear I’m gonna dump you if you ever said yes.” My blood started to boil. 

“No, he’s not,” said Minhyun. I breathed out in relief. 

“He is him and you are you,” he continued. 

“What the hell was that supposed to mean. Who is this guy, why is he visiting Minhyun, clearly he is not a business partner for this meeting is not listed in my agenda. What is his relationship with Minhyun?” I shot so many questions inside my head. 


I put my whole attention to decrypt their conversation until I didn’t notice that Aaron was already standing right behind me. 

“What are you doing?” he whispered into my ear, intentionally making his voice sound heavier. 

“Gah!!!” I felt like my soul was almost escaping my shell. “Aaron! You scared me!” 

“You act like my mother-in-law, Jonghyun. Why? What’s happening?” 

“I... just.. there is this suspicious guy that I never knew before and he’s in Minhyun’s office right now.” 

“You mean Ong Seongwu?” 

“You know him?” 

“Yeah. He called me in just now. He’s my junior in New York. Minhyun’s ex.” 

“Ex?” I widen my eyes. “As in ex-husband or ex-boyfriend?” 

“Ex-boyfriend. Ooh… Did I spill it too fast?” Aaron pouted, pretending like he regretted. “I thought you two were already talking about each other's past relationships.” 

“I don’t have past relationship. While, him? I don’t know.” I glared at the door. 

“Relax, man. It’s all over between them.” Aaron patted my shoulder. “I’ll go inside and check them for you okay?” 

I just nodded and gave way for Aaron to enter Minhyun’s office. I caught a glimpse of Ong Seongwu for once more when Aaron was opening the door. Damn, he’s pretty good looking. “Is that person really Minhyun’s type? If yes, why did they break up? And why is he here now? What does he want from Minhyun? What does Minhyun want from him?” I thought to myself, contemplating about many other possibilities that might or might not happen. 

But before sinking deeper, I decided to just let it go, get back to work and stop worrying about things that were out of my control. 



After office hours.

“Sir, it’s already 8PM. Are you still planning to pull an overtime?” I asked Minhyun in his office. I already carried my bag on my shoulder, ready to go home even if my boss still didn’t want to. I was so tired with work. 

“Oh, you’re still here. You can go home first, Jonghyun. I got plans after this.”

“Why didn’t you tell me? I would have left first.” I let out a protest. 

“I’m drowned in my work, baby. I’m sorry.” Minhyun gestured at the scattered documents on his desk. They looked like a spinning headache. 

I approached him and tried to speak more gently this time. “Sorry, I didn’t know. I was a bit upset after waiting for two hours for nothing.” I caressed the back of his hair. He hummed and leaned his head closer to my belly in response. 

“Are there still a lot? Do you want me to help with something?” 

“Yes, I do.” 

“Tell me. What is it?” 

“Kiss me right here.” Minhyun pointed at his lips. “Come on.” He puckered his lips. I sighed but quickly leaned down to give him a light peck. I used to kiss him more passionately than this to be honest, but the memory of his ex-boyfriend that was just here in his office this morning flashed inside my head in a split second and made me stop the kiss. 

“That’s it?” Minhyun opened his eyes and questioned the lack of energy in my kiss. He looked disappointed so I bent down once more to give him another light peck. 

“There I gave you two. I’m being very generous today so stop the protest okay?” I patched it up. 

Minhyun laughed in his usual tone as he stood up to grab my head and pull me in for another smooch, but I managed to escape his hold and run away from his embrace. 

“That was… You’re very fast, Jonghyun,” said Minhyun, all flustered, he put one hand on his hip. He’s rubbing his lips, thinking if he should chase after me or just give it up. In the end, he just walked and grabbed his suit from the hanger at the corner of his office. “I can chase you if I want, but I don’t want to be late for my appointment.” 

“What appointment?” I asked.

“You know the guy from this morning. He wants to meet me again for a drink.” 

“Oh...” I tightened my grip on the sling of my bag. “Can I.. come with you?” I put my courage on. 

Minhyun turned to me as he’s adjusting the collar of his suit. “I’m sorry, Jonghyun.. I think it won’t be much fun for you,” he tried to break it down to me slowly. “He’s an old friend of mine and we haven’t met for years, mostly we’ll talk about the boring old days.” 

I stayed quiet, feeling a bit suffocated as I knew Minhyun only spilled the half truth. I wish he could just tell me straight about the guy and why they’re meeting again for a drink right now.. at night. 

But I tried to play it cool, being a level-headed boyfriend who could give some space to his partner. I forced a smile and nodded away. “It’s totally fine, sir.. I was just playing. I don’t feel like drinking actually tonight. I just want to sleep and go home. You know I got so many clients to deal with outside today.” I laughed awkwardly, feeling the unnecessary length in my explanation. 

“I can drop you off first at your place then,” said Minhyun.

“Oh, no. You’ll be late. I can just take the bus. Besides, I need to do grocery shop too on my way home,” I sternly reasoned. 

“It’s okay, Jonghyun. Let’s go.” 

I quickly kissed him goodbye on his cheek before he pushed more about his idea. “I’m fine, really. See you tomorrow. Just don’t drink too much okay? I love you.” I hugged him tight and quick before dashing to the door. 

 

A quarter past midnight.

Jonghyun:

[Are you home safe? I’m worried.]

Tossing and turning in bed, I sent a message to Minhyun. I knew my boyfriend was a responsible man. He usually didn’t drink more than his capability and he would have called a substitute driver if he were drunk. But tonight I inexplicably just felt more worried. 

15 minutes had passed, my message was still left unread. Feeling restless, I decided to call him. 


Beep... beep... beep... 

it’s connecting for quite a while until my call was finally received. 

“Hellooo?” 

I froze upon hearing the stranger’s voice over the phone. 

“Uh.. hello? Who is this? Is Mr. Hwang Minhyun okay? I am his secretary. Can I speak to him at the moment?” I got to my points rapidly. 

“Slow dooown… who is thiiiis??”

“I’m Mr. Hwang’s secretary.”

“Ooooh.. It’s youuu... You are that.. his secretaryyy...” the voice sounded very intoxicated, filled with hiccups and gibberish. 

“Sorry, who am I speaking to now? Can you pass the phone to Mr. Hwang?” 

“Hey! Hwang! Answer your phone! Your secretary is looking for youuuu!!!” The stranger nagged at Minhyun but I still couldn’t hear Minhyun’s voice in response or something.

“He doesn’t answer though? What to dooo?” the stranger replied to me.  

“Is this perhaps, Mr. Ong Seongwu?” I took my guess. 

“Oh! Whaaaa, you know my nameee,” he blabbered again. “How did you know my nameee, Mr. Secretary??” 

“Where are you now, sir?” 

“We? Uh we are at a hotel. Minhyun booked a rooooom...” 

My blood started to boil again. What the hell was Minhyun thinking? Booking a room with his ex. What was he planning to do? I tried to control my emotions and find where this was heading to.

“I’m sorry I will have to get Mr. Hwang now cos he has to catch an important flight early tomorrow morning.” I made up a reason. “Please inform me the hotel and the room number, sir.” 

“The suite! We’re in the suite. The presidential suite.. Hyatt Hotel,” spilled the drunk man. 

“Okay sir. I’ll be right there. Thank you.” I hung up the phone, grabbing whatever I could wear and rushed out to pick up my boss — no, my stupid boyfriend. 


One hour past midnight. 

I was standing right in front of the hotel suite as referred by Minhyun’s ex. I tapped the card to unlock the door. Being a professional in this career path, I managed to make a good connection with the general manager and a few higher ups of this hotel. 

I told them that I needed access to pick Mr. Hwang that was feeling a bit unwell in the suite and they trusted me with the room key right away.  

I looked around the room and found Minhyun was on the bed while the other guy was lying on the floor. “What the hell happened here..” I questioned in my head. 

I noticed that my boyfriend was sleeping only in his boxer. I approached him first to check if he’s still alive because if he were, I wouldn’t mind to kill him again. 

“Minhyun! Wake up!” I slapped his back as he’s sleeping flat on his chest. He smelled of hard liquor. “Hey! Wake up!” I yelled again. He groaned in response, his voice was heavy and raspy. 

“Why are you naked?!” I slapped his butt this time. Much stronger.

“Why can’t I get naked when it’s so hot?!” he yelled back in annoyance, still half conscious. “It’s my body! Who are you to tell me this or that!” 

“You bastard! Wake up!” I yelled twice louder than he did this time. I flipped his body over while shaking him awake. “Why are you naked in a hotel room with your ex?!” I poured it all out. 

“What ex? I’m here with my Jonghyunie..” he started to open his eyes a bit, struggling to regain his consciousness. “Huh? Where are we now?” still sounded very lost and confused. 

“At Hyatt.” 

“How did I get here?” 

“That is my question too!” I snapped at him. “Come on, let’s get you dressed and home.” I set him to upright position, trying to put his shirt back on him while he started drifting back to sleep again.

“Where is your pants?” I asked him. 

“I don’t know.”

“Why would you be naked in the first place? 

“I can’t... remember...” he groaned in frustration. “Why you’re asking so many questions. My head is still spinning.” 

“Served you right,” I replied while trying to reach his pants that was trapped under the bed. “How the hell it could get stuck here! Fuck!” 

“Ah.. Don’t curse, Jonghyunnie. You scared me,” Minhyun mumbled like a baby, trying to hide his big self in the blanket. He’s clearly very drunk. 

“Shut up. Now quick wear this.” I helped him with the pants. He did as told. 

“Now, let’s go,” I ordered. 

He shook his head. “I couldn’t feel my legs, Jonghyun,” he blurted out another nonsense. I decided to just carry him to sit him on the couch first because I needed to move his ex to the bed, but he was heavier than I thought. 

With much struggle, I managed to walk my big boyfriend to the couch and quickly moved his ex-boyfriend to the bed. After covering Ong Seongwu with the blanket, I left a note on the bedside table. 

 

Good morning, Mr. Ong Seongwu. 

Here is the room key and the hangover drink for you. Mr. Hwang Minhyun has to leave first for a business reason. Thank you.

— Secretary Kim. 



Minhyun slept like a dead man on the way home as I was driving him home. By the time we arrived at his apartment, it's already close to 3am and my energy was almost depleted. 

I still had to carry him to his room through the elevator and threw him onto his bed. He groaned in discomfort yet quickly went back to his sleep. Physically exhausted and emotionally drained, I stumbled and crashed on the couch in the living room. Slowly I could feel that the sleepiness was also taking over me. 


The next morning.

I was woken up by Minhyun’s voice that seemed to be in a conversation with someone — probably through the phone.

“Are you okay? I’m sorry. Yes, I’m home. No no. It’s okay. Don’t bother.”

“At least he sounds sober now,” I thought

“I think we shouldn’t meet again, Seongwu,” said Minhyun.

I tried to focus more to catch on things he’s talking about. Slowly, the voice seemed to be clearer and clearer, like the subject was approaching my location. 

“My boyfriend wouldn’t like it,” he said

From the volume of his voice, I could tell that now he’s standing right behind the couch. I urgently closed my eyes, pretended to sleep when I heard that he’s about to end the phone call. 

“Yeah.. Bye,” he sighed. I could hear him, he’s close. I tried not to move from my sleeping position. I didn’t know why I was doing this when I wasn’t the one who was at fault here. 

In my defense, I was just not ready to face him as the first thing this morning. I was a little afraid that he would be angry, or maybe disappointed in me or maybe I should be the one that got angry first. Everything was tangled in my head and felt so awkward. 

“Morning, cute puppy.” Minhyun suddenly kissed my cheek. His reaction was beyond my expectation. “I know you’re already awake,” he giggled over my cheek. 

“No, I’m not!” I turned and raised my head, trying to deny in the most obvious and stupid way. Minhyun quickly caught my lips with another light peck. 

“Sure,” he said, while grinning like a sly fox. “By the way, do I have an important flight this morning, Jonghyun?” he asked. 

“What?” I questioned in return, before realizing that he’s teasing my fake reason for Ong Seongwu last night. 

“Maybe you’re the one who has an important flight this morning huh?” he scoffed. 

“I.. just..” I couldn’t think of the right explanation. “But, wait a minute!” I said, finally catching on the situation. “Why are you trying to make me feel guilty here when you’re the one who owes me an explanation?” I glared at him. 

“You’ve lied to me that Ong Seongwu is just your old friend when he’s actually your ex boyfriend.”

“We dated for a while and broke up so it’s true that he’s also an old friend,” Minhyun said. Nonchalantly and flat like he’s always right. I hated it when this side of him showed up. 

“Yes it’s true, but you’re only half-way in telling me the truth.” I didn’t back down. “Fine, if you said that he’s an old friend but why did you try to sleep together in a suite?” I shot him more questions as I was recollecting the memories from last night. 

“We were drinking at the bar in Hyatt, so it’s obviously more practical to just sleep in the hotel as we were getting drunk.” 

“Together? In a suite?” I questioned his ridiculous statement. “And naked?” 

“I wasn’t naked, Jonghyun. I still had my underwear. And as what you saw, Seongwu stayed in his clothes,” he reasoned back. “Besides, we didn’t do anything. We just fell asleep.” 

“Oh so you think it would be fine too if I slept with Dongho in the same hotel room, while naked too?” 

“Why would you sleep with him? And again, I'm not naked, Jonghyun.” he warned.

“Well we don’t do anything too. Dongho is nice and he’s a good old friend of mine. Just like Seongwu and you.” 

Minhyun’s expression was getting darker as he couldn’t find another argument to defend himself. He looked at me with his sharp gaze and I could feel that anger also started to boil inside of him.

“Look. I hate to argue with you, okay? But you need to be honest with me to fix this misunderstanding.” I tried to simmer it down but he didn’t look much convinced. I could tell from his stubborn face that he didn’t want to explain anything to me. 

The situation was getting very frustrating and annoying at the same time. I stood up from the couch to free myself from this torture. “You know what. It’s fine if you don’t want to tell me. It’s your personal thing and I’m just your secretary, anyway.” I blurted whatever in my head out, while heading to the door to leave his place. 

Minhyun chased me and grabbed me from behind.

“Wait..” he said. “If you leave like this we will have to fight for days and I hate that.” He tightened his arms around my waist. 

“Let’s just fight.” I shook his arms off me. 

— to be continued.

Chapter Text

Since the last morning Jonghyun left my place, I hadn’t spoken with him for about a week. At first I just wanted to test who would be more uncomfortable in this situation, me or him. Turned out I was the one who was getting more uncomfortable. I was already used to with Jonghyun organizing everything for me. From office works to my daily necessity sometimes. 

I had to admit the guy was magic. He managed to prepare everything without leaving any details. Once he mastered something, he had this sense of perfection in his job, yet it never became his burden, almost like he’s born with it. In a fight like this, it’s clearly my loss. I missed my right hand man and my boyfriend.

Jonghyun still did his work, but he did it through emails and printed documents. He talked to me in the most minimalist form. I bet he didn’t know how I missed our longer encounter when he would occasionally throw his arm around my shoulders and squeeze one of them just to release the tense in it. 

He was also always good at explaining things. I didn’t have to elaborate to make him understand my points, he could deliver what I had in mind to the clients almost instantly. Not to mention, his sparkling rounded eyes that danced along his eyebrows as he tried to make people understand his explanation. 

I wondered if he missed me like I missed him. From what I saw yesterday how he hung out with the others during lunch break, he seemed fine and it infuriated me. I felt like dying inside. Funny, when we were fighting for too long, sometimes we forgot what we’re fighting for in the first place. I should just run to him and beg for forgiveness, but my pride did not allow me to do it yet.

I must be cursed with an overly high self-esteem for thinking that I should teach my boyfriend a lesson even in this situation where I was partly at fault too. 


“Aaron, I have an urgent request. Get me someone from HR to be my assistant,” I said when we’re talking in our office. Jonghyun was outside at his station. 

“What? Why? Are you going to fire Jonghyun?” 

“No. But I’m at war with him.” 

“You’re at a war?” 

“I’m more surprised with Jonghyun doesn't tell you that.” 

“He doesn't. He’s more quiet lately but I thought he was just tired. Dude..” 

“Just consider I need additional assistant for a month,” 

“So you plan to fight with him for a month?” Aaron raised an eyebrow, questioning my sanity perhaps. 

“We’ll see about that.” 

 

Week 2 of Fighting - Day 1 

“Yo! Minhyun, I’ve brought your new assistant,” Aaron knocked and barged in to my office at the same time. He brought in this young lanky guy that looked like he’d just graduated from college yesterday and still out of his place. Jonghyun followed behind them. There’s a bit of confusion on his expression. My plan might work. 

“Go ahead, greet him. He’s your new boss. Mr. Hwang Minhyun — finance director,” said Aaron, nudging the new employee who seemed clueless. 

“Good morning, Mr. Hwang Minhyun. My name is Yoo Seonho.” 

At least his words were flowing clearly, unlike Jonghyun’s first time when he met me. “Good morning, secretary Yoo.” I nodded. Just as necessary, as I was more interested to check the change in Jonghyun’s expression.  

“I’m sorry, Mr. Kwak but I’m afraid I wasn’t informed about this,” said Jonghyun. There’s no stain of protest in his statement, just pure curiosity. “Will I be transferred to another department or..?” 

“Fired perhaps?” I smirked after successfully inserted my comment. He looked at me with his rounded eyes before turning to Aaron again, expecting my friend to save him. I could feel that Aaron was glaring at me, even sharper than Jonghyun did. 

“No, Jonghyun. Silly, you. You won’t get transferred or worse.. Fired. Hell no,” said Aaron, shaking his head. “In fact, we need you to train Seonho here. Consider him as our new intern.” 

“Understood, sir,” answered Jonghyun. He smiled at Seonho. I missed that smile. To be honest, I wanted to get up from my chair to pinch his soft cheek or put my lips on it. Maybe I should. 

“Okay, good then.” Aaron clapped both his hands, snapping me out of my daydream. “Seonho, I’ve taught you all the basics. You can learn more from your senior here— Secretary Kim. And I hope you can deliver much assistance for Director Hwang. May you all get along well for the time being too,” Aaron concluded. 

“Ok, I’ll leave you guys to it. See you later.” Aaron went out to his office. Jonghyun and Seonho followed him outside. 

“Secretary Yoo.” 

“Yes, Director Hwang.” 

“I need to brief you a few things.”

The new secretary blinked at Jonghyun, signaling him for some company. Jonghyun softly shook his head and told him to stay in the room before he walked outside to his desk. 


Teaching Seonho was harder than I thought. I spent my entire morning to brief him things, more intensely than what I did to Jonghyun actually, but it remained futile. To simply put, the boy lacked common sense. It’s faster to do everything myself. 

I saw Jonghyun patting the boy on his shoulder when he’s back to their shared-station. 

“It’s okay, Seonho. It’s just your first day. No one does well on their first day.” I overheard my boyfriend. 

“This is insane, Secretary Kim. I feel my brain is about to explode. What’s wrong with Director Hwang? Does he hate me? I can’t process that much information in one go.” 

“Director Hwang has always been like that. He’s even worse on my first day,” said Jonghyun. 


"Great. Now they’re talking bad behind my back...”
I scoffed to myself. 


“But he doesn’t mean bad. He’s just very detailed and he wants you to learn faster so you can follow his steps,”
he said. I held my breath for a sec. “After all, it is important for us to work as precisely as he does in this field. Cos we’re dealing with numbers,” he added. “And though he might look difficult and cold, he’s actually a warm guy. You’ll get used to him, Seonho.” 

It’s annoying how his words pinched my heart by a slight. The fact he said all those things with such earnest stance just drove me insane. We were in the middle of a fight, and he didn’t play it fair. How I was supposed to attack after knowing so much about his perspective on me. 

“Let’s just grab some lunch first, shall we? I will share with you some of my secret tips after that.” Jonghyun smiled and took the boy outside. I never realized, I would feel this miserable by looking at his smile. 

 

Week 2 of Fighting - Day 3

“I put grey marker on the important columns, sir,” Seonho briefed me on his freshly-made report. “I used pink at first but according to Secretary Kim, you don’t like bright markers.” 

I hummed in approval, while scanning through every detail, flipping every page. “Good. I have a question though, Secretary Yoo. Did Secretary Kim do this for you?” 

“Uhm..” Seonho hesitated at my question. “To be honest, I asked him to check everything for me before I gave it to you sir. But I made the report myself.” 

“Don’t lie to me. I saw traces of his work habits in this report.” 

“By checking, I mean he did correct a few things too, sir,” Seonho explained. “But I was next to him when he’s correcting this report. So we can call it as a part of my learning process.” 

“Okay. Fair enough. But next time, do everything yourself.” 

“Why, sir? Is Mr. Kim leaving?” 

“No. Why would he?” 

“Oh I just thought he’s leaving. Because I saw he was browsing for job vacancy yesterday.” 

“No, he isn’t leaving.” I turned to look at Jonghyun through the blinds in my office. He seemed calm. Seonho might be wrong. "Even if he begged, I won’t let him." I reassured inside. 

 

Week 2 of Fighting - Day 4

“Come with me to the monthly meeting,” I briskly announced as I was striding to the meeting room. Both Jonghyun and Seonho stood up from their seats, quickly grabbing their notes and documents on the desk. 

“No. Not you, Jonghyun. Just Seonho,” I commanded. He paused, clearly stupefied but continued to compose himself. 

“But I’m always in charge of the monthly report,” he returned my command. It was his first sentence for me after the silent treatment for almost two weeks. 

“Oh, you’ve decided to talk to me now?” I sneered, looking at his brows that furrowed in resentment. 

“I was just.. wondering, sir.” 

“You heard me right. Pass your reports to Seonho. Starting today, he’ll be in charge of it.” 

Feeling helpless, his eyes could only burn in discontent while he was reluctantly handing his work for months to Seonho. I could sense trouble. I might be pushing him a bit too far today, yet still I stuck my head to the game.  

“Clean my office while I’m out,” I instructed him, enjoying my privilege for being the upper hand. I could see his lips transition to curl downward yet he still managed to contain his anger. 

 

The Meeting

I was about to start the meeting with the whole finance team when I heard knocks on the door. 

“Morning, everyone. Don’t mind me, I’m just here for the regular assessment. You know, as the representative from HR,” said Aaron while still standing at the door. “Allow me to join this meeting, Director Hwang.” 

“Sure.” I said. 

“What are you doing? Come on in,” said Aaron, turning his head to someone outside. “Sorry, I found this lost sheep out here,” he said to everyone in the room, while dragging Jonghyun in. “Get in here, Secretary Kim. You need to be evaluated too,” he pushed him to sit on the side of the meeting room with him. 

"Shit, Aaron. He just ruined my plan.” I cursed inside. 

“Alright.” I cleared my throat. “If there’s no more interruption, let’s start this monthly meeting.” I said while signaling Seonho to turn on the projector. In return, that dumb kid stared at me all confused, questioning my signal. 

Jonghyun must read the situation quicker than anyone else in the room. He quietly approached the meeting table, he turned on the projector as he usually did and set it up fast before he returned to his seat at the side corner of the meeting room, right across my left side. 

Aaron cleared his throat on purpose, telling me that he knew what I was up to by leaving Jonghyun out of this meeting. I refused to look at him. 

 

30 minutes into the meeting and I dropped my pen on the floor while Manager Choi was doing his presentation at front. Even more carelessly, I kicked it again and it rolled close to Seonho’s feet. I tried to ask him to pick it up for me but the clueless secretary couldn’t read my gesture. 

I decided to pick it up myself. I dragged my chair, stretched out my leg, trying to bring it closer to my side. “Almost got it,” I thought, cos I felt it from inside my shoe, like stepping on something that shaped like a pen. Now I just needed to step on it and roll it back with my foot.  

“O.. owh — ” suddenly I heard someone groaned in pain from under the table, that familiar voice was low as the person tried to suppress it, but I recognized it. It was Jonghyun’s. He then got up, and passing me my pen. I noticed his fingers were scraped, reddened and it made him to excuse himself outside. 

I instructed the team to keep going with the meeting while I excused myself too. Outside, I saw a glimpse of Jonghyun in the pantry. I approached him and found that he’s struggling to apply an adhesive bandage on his knuckles. 

“Sorry,” I said. 

He ignored it and continued to blow some air on his fingers, trying to soothe the burning pain.

“Does it hurt?” I asked again. "Does it bleed?" He didn’t answer.

I got impatient by looking at his clumsy attempt to stick the bandage so I snatched the bandage off his hand and pressed it on his wound. He groaned at the rough treatment and immediately pulled his hand out of my grip, replaced it with a glare straight deep into my eyes. I leaned back. 

“You’re being difficult, Jonghyun.” 

“You bastard,” he murmured before he walked out, leaving me alone in the pantry. 

 

Back in the meeting room. Unexpectedly, the meeting took longer than usual. There were some serious issues that might lead to corruption in the branch office overseas. 

“Director Hwang, I suggest we must conduct an audit to our branch office overseas,” said Manager Jeon Wonwoo — one of the managers in Finance. “We need to compare the reports we received and the real-time data.” 

“I agree,” the others started to support the idea. “But it might be a difficult task, they’re usually hard to control and tend to hide things,” said Manager Hong. 

“We can send Secretary Kim as usual to collect the real-time data,” I said

“Do we need to send at least three people though, sir? We might be dealing with bad people here.” Manager Jeon concerned.  

I turned to Jonghyun and his eyes were indicating to send more people with him. I looked away. 

“No. I think Secretary Kim alone would be fine.” 

— to be continued

Chapter Text

I stroke my fingers on his face. Slowly tracing the contour from his cute nose to the pair of lips below it. He sniffled and gently shook his head, avoiding the ticklish sensation on his face. I held him closer after he remained still.

“Jonghyun…” I called his name, for no reason. I liked the sound of his name on my tongue. 

“Jonghyun, baby..” I squeezed him, enjoying the warmth of his skin around my skin.

“Hmmhh…” he groaned under the blanket, trying to turn his body around but he was trapped between my arms.

“You’re late for work, Jonghyun. Your boss is going to be so angry.”

“Huh? But my boss.. he.. my boss” he replied in gibberish, obviously still under half-sleeping state. “Boss?”

“Yes,” I replied.

“Can I.. sleep.. for another day... sir?” he asked with his eyes closed. He looked like heaven. My heaven. 

“Go ahead. If it’s okay for you to miss our flight home.”

“But our flight is in the evening.” He suddenly tilted up his head, squinting his eyes to adjust with the bright sunlight that seeped into our hotel room.

“Oh, you’re awake now?” I chuckled at his morning bedhead. Random hair strands were sticking out, some parts where they're a bit longer than the others got tangled. His eyes were still puffy but his cheeks were glowing like the sunshine. To me he's beautiful. 

“Heu heu..” he beamed his wide grin at me while giggling quietly like the dork he always be. 

“Someone must have had a great night,” I teased, while popping multiple kisses on one of his soft cheeks. “You look like you’re in a good mood.” I rested my head on a pile of pillows, while pulling Jonghyun for a cuddle while he's still covered by the blanket. He put his chin on my chest, with his arms around my waist, and his fingers laced behind my back.

“Thanks to you,” he said then planted a kiss on my chest, before pausing for a few seconds. “But I felt rather sore on the bottom. Oh, shit. It’s kicking in now. What did you do to me, Minhyun!” he glared.

“I fu ”

“Stop! Don’t say that out loud!” he pushed up from his position and put his hand over my mouth before I could finish my words.

“Why?”

“It’s embarrassing. What if someone hears it.”

“But no one’s here. It's our room.” 

“It’s still embarrassing..” said Jonghyun, he avoided my gaze. 

“I fu…c—” I intentionally repeated the f word to tease him. 

“No!” He covered his ears. I stopped and pulled his head back to my chest, chuckling at our antics in the morning.

“I made love to you, Jonghyun. That's what I did to you last night,” I whispered in his ear, wrapping his bare shoulders with my arms while smooching the top of his head with two or more kisses. "Because I love you. Now how about you hm? Do you love me?" 

“Argh…” he softly groaned. “You’re making me crazy,” his voice was muffled because he pressed his face on my chest.

“Oh, hmm…” I ruffled his hair. “If making love with me only caused you pain and embarrassment. Maybe we should not do it anymore, right?”

“Wait! What? Don’t…” He pushed his head upward, looking me straight in the eyes, thinking I was being serious. 

“Don’t what?” 

“Don’t quit…” he buried his head under the blanket again.

“Why you act like a turtle, Jonghyun?” I chuckled at the view, tightening my arms around him. “How can I quit when you’re this addictive, hm?” I said. He broke into another giggle. 

 

"By the way, for my first time, I did quite good right?” Jonghyun suddenly got curious with his performance.

“Better than your first day of work actually,” I replied, followed by two slaps on my belly from Jonghyun.

“Maybe if you were that gentle and warm on my first day of work, I would have done well too,” he whined. 

“You’re right.” I smiled and kissed his forehead. 

There’s something in seeing Jonghyun naked that made me soft and hard at the same time. Maybe it was the way his rounded eyes all sparkled in innocence when he’s naked as he waited for my guidance in bed. Jonghyun shouldn't be too shy about it. If only he knew how crazy he made me last night when I saw him all naked for the first time. 

“I gotta admit, you have a great body, Jonghyun. I was surprised when I took off your shirt.” 

“You hug me all the time and you still can’t feel my muscles?”

“Over those many layers? How could I?” I objected, while fondling his chest. “I work out my chest too but why they don’t appear as big as yours.”

"But you have nice abs. Though it's a little flabby." He grinned while pinching the fat in my belly.

"I'm a busy man, Jonghyun. Do you think I would have the luxury to work out?" 

“Wait. Stop it.” Feeling my more intense movement, Jonghyun nudged my hand off his chest. “Look at these marks you left!" He pointed at his chest and neck. 

“They look beautiful though.” I admired my work of art on his body.

"I look like I was just swarmed by leeches!"

“It looks like stars in the sky to me. I can even paint the whole universe on your body if you let me.” I attempted to flip him over for a round two but Jonghyun was faster.

“All right. That’s enough.” Jonghyun rose up from the bed. He got out of the blanket all naked. 

"You don't just leave a man naked in his bed alone to run away while flaunting your sexy little butt at him, Jonghyun." 

"Shut up." He poked my stomach before dashing to the bathroom. "I'd better try the tub before we went home." 

 

“Minhyun, get me my underwear!” he shouted a few secs later. 

“Only if you let me in!” I yelled from outside.  

“Well, come in! But quick!" 

I hopped out of the bed, and stepped into the bathroom with a wide grin on my face. It was indeed a good morning with my sunshine. 

Chapter Text

A A R O N

I hated going to the office when the weather was gloomy like today. The forecast said nothing about rain this morning but it looked like the sky was going to bawl. My sensitive moment was halted by the vibration from the phone in my pocket. I took it out to check the new message. 

I hoped it’s from Jonghyun. I missed that guy we used to hang out on almost every lunch break in the office, before he got sent to Shanghai by his boss — and also my buddy, though I hated to admit. That Hwang fuckin’ Minhyun. 

But apparently it was a message from my staff in Shanghai. 

 

Wen Junhui (Shanghai HR):

[Good morning, Mr. Kwak, I’m sorry to inform you a bad news first thing in the morning. There’s an incident occurred early this morning to Mr. Kim Jonghyun.]

[He was stabbed in his hotel room and now rushed to the hospital. We’re getting hold of the situation and I will update you on the development as soon as possible.]

***

My hands were shaking but I managed to call Jun right away, demanding to get more of the situation. So this was the reason why the sky was so gloomy today. 

Arrived at the office, I still couldn’t cast the murky water inside my mind away. Jonghyun was undergoing the surgery and we all had to wait for the best result. From what Jun said, he had lost a lot of blood. 

I walked to Minhyun’s office, finding the bastard was chit-chatting with the other higher ups at their exclusive lounge. I signaled him to follow me quickly to his office so I could break the news in private. He put down his mug. 

“What is it, Aaron? Director Han just told me an amusing story about one of our investors. You gotta hear this.” He chuckled. 

“I don’t care about the damned investor, Minhyun. Your boyfriend is in the hospital right now,” I cut to the case. His expression quickly shifted. 

“My b..” 

“Yes. Jonghyun. He is going through an emergency surgery right now. He was stabbed this morning in the hotel where he stayed. The wound seemed severe cos Junhui said he lost a lot of blood. He's rushed to the E.R and now we can only wait until the surgery is finished.” 

“I swear to God, Minhyun. If something happened to him...” I trembly grabbed both sides of his collar. “Must you send him alone? It won’t happen if he went there in a team — ” I paused. I saw the air in Minhyun’s face change. He started to become pale and trembled in fear or perhaps guilt. I let go of my grips. 

“From what my staff told me the murder attempt seems relating to the audit. The local police are still investigating the case right now,” I said. “Now what are you gonna do?” 

“I have to go,” he said, voice was shaking. “I have to be there…” 

“You’d better be.” 

 

Flight to Shanghai

Minhyun, Seonho and I took the earliest flight to Shanghai. Minhyun was very quiet during the flight. He spent his time gazing out of the window, rubbing his face a couple of times, closing his eyes, maybe praying.  It’s the first time I saw him this distressed.

“It’ll be alright, man.” I patted his shoulder. “He’ll be okay. Jonghyun will be okay..” I tried my best to comfort him, though I couldn’t completely hide the trace of anxiety in my tone too. 

“I shouldn’t have sent him alone...” he mumbled. “It’s all my fault. I was blinded by my emotions.” He leaned his head against the headrest. “The last time I talked to him was the day we had that meeting.” 

 

Flashback: The day of the meeting

“What a bastard!” Jonghyun slammed a document folder on his desk when he got back to his station after the meeting. 

"Who is the bastard?” Minhyun responded, as he's following him to their office room. 

“You! You’re the bastard.” 

“You called me that twice today, Jonghyun! That’s enough. And how the hell sending my own secretary for an audit makes me a bastard? Tell me the logic. Cos the last time I checked, I’m still your boss and you work here to assist me.” 

Jonghyun eyes quivered at the demand. We all knew, it’s such a sly move from Minhyun to pull out the hierarchy card in times like this. 

“I don’t think I should answer that question, sir. When we both know the answer,” Jonghyun replied. Both stared like they’re about to strangle each other. I kept on observing, while trying not to interfere. 

“But fine, I’ll go," continued Jonghyun. "Besides, if something bad ever occurred to me during the audit, you could just go back to your ex. I’m just someone you need to clean your office, anyway… sir.” Jonghyun put his documents down, walking out of the office because he felt suffocated. 

“Good. Then, board the earliest flight today. I want the report as soon as possible!” Minhyun stressed his point. Though his tone was cold as usual and rather harsh, he seemed composed. 

***  


“That was our last talk. If only I sent more people with him, the audit would have been done faster and he didn’t have to spend more nights all by himself..” Minhyun buried his face into his hands. “I swear, Aaron. If I didn’t get to talk to him again.. I’d be.. Shit.. I’m really a bastard.” 

“We’ll get to talk to him again,” I dispelled. “I believe it that way. Besides, no one knew that it would be this dangerous. Stop blaming yourself.” I squeezed his shoulder, trying to break this curse. “Now you’d better pull yourself together. We’re almost there.” 

 

 

M I N H Y U N

The flight to Shanghai was short but it felt like the longest flight in my life. As soon as the plane had landed, we were greeted by Wen Junhui at the airport who was designated to take us to the hospital. 

“Good afternoon, Director Hwang. I’m sorry we have to meet under such unfortunate circumstances,” he shook my hand. “But there's good news. I just got the latest update from my staff in the hospital just now. Secretary Kim has been sent to the recovery room. The surgery went well.” He smiled. 

I heaved a sigh of relief as soon as the news sunk in. I could tell Aaron and Seonho also shared the same feeling from the way they jumped and hugged Junhui. “Can we get to the hospital now?” I requested. “I need to see him.” 

“Yes, of course. This way, please, Director Hwang,” said Junhui. 

The hospital room. 

I insisted Aaron and Seonho to grab some dinner first and buy a change of clothes. We left in a hurry until we didn’t even get to bring any luggage. I stayed in the hospital room, to watch over my boyfriend. 

Jonghyun was still sleeping when he’s transferred here from the recovery room. He looked pale, but he’s breathing safe and sound. I thanked God for every of this second he’s being alive. 

The room was quiet, only the sound from the vital signs monitor filled the air. Outside the window, the night lights were twinkling under the dark sky. It might feel lonely, with a dash of sadness yet I felt some sort of tranquility with Jonghyun in sight.

I held his hand, it’s soft but still a bit cold. I gently brought it to my lips. “I’m sorry..” I whispered between his fingers. “I love you, Jonghyun,” I said again. “I’m sorry..” I kept my eyes closed and could only think of the word  sorry. 

 

“I’m.. sorry too.. ”

I could hear the familiar voice, though still sounded low and weak. I immediately lifted my head to meet his eyes that were as twinkling as the city lights outside. 

“Jonghyun! You’re awake!”   

 

— to be continued.

Chapter Text

“Where am I? Why I am surrounded by darkness,” I thought to myself. In a need of flashlight, I tried searching for my phone but found nothing. 

Suddenly I could sense a big pitch-black shadow was marching toward my direction. I should run, but my feet were like glued to the ground. 

“Jonghyun! Run!” A fox suddenly screamed beside my ear. 

“Huh? What are you? Where did you come from?” I turned to the fox. Its fur was as white as snow and the eyes were gold. It’s beautiful and its scent was somewhat familiar, it reminded me of home.

“Does that matter now? Run! Follow me!” it ordered urgently like he had authority over me. I did as told, almost like a habit. Slowly I was making my distance from the scary shadow but I was tripped and fell into another dark pit...

 

***

Breaking in cold sweats, I was awakened from my dream. The room was filled with the dim light and it’s freezing. I wanted to move but there’s no power in my muscles. 

I turned to the right side of my bed and found Minhyun here, closing his eyes while wrapping up my hand in his hands. “I’m sorry…” he whispered. “I love you..” 

I rubbed my thumb over his hand. “I’m sorry,” I muttered under my breath. 

Minhyun opened his eyes when he heard my voice. “Jonghyun, you’re awake! Are you okay? Do you feel any pain? Oh wait. I should call the doctor first.” He rushed to push the medical assistance button.

 

The doctor talked to Minhyun. Though the surgery went well, apparently, it’s gonna be one hell of a night for me tonight and I was given more painkillers to ease the struggle. 

“Please keep a watch on him. Make sure he’s calm and not moving too much.” The doctor advised Minhyun. “And if there’s any strange symptom or allergy, you can summon the medical staff immediately.” 

 

“So, did you read my report?” I broke the ice, when it’s back to only two of us in the room.


“I did.” He leaned closer, placing his hand on my forehead, feeling the temperature. “You exceed my expectation, as always,” whispered Minhyun, his palm slid down to my face, stroking my cheek. “You’re still a little hot.” 

“Can I get some water?” I requested. He got me a glass of water from the bedside table. 

“Do you want anything to make you feel better?” he asked. 

“No. I'm just gonna get back to sleep," I said while trying to adjust my pillow, Minhyun helped me right away with it. "But maybe, can you get me an extra pillow?” I added. 

Minhyun took off his suit and he hung it neatly on the chair. He suddenly climbed up my bed to lie beside me. He carefully lifted my head, slipping his left arm under my neck. 

“What are you doing?!” I questioned his action. “It’s too narrow here. You’re big. Get off!”

Minhyun didn’t say a thing, he wordlessly fixed my blanket so it completely covered me up to my shoulders. He hugged me close to his chest. I could feel the warmth of his body and his steady heartbeat. They made me lose the energy to continue my protest. 

 

“I’m sorry, Jonghyun,” he muttered. I could feel the mild vibration over his chest when he spoke low and gently like this. “I should have been with you from day one,” he continued. I could see there’s still guilt painted over his face. I wished there’s still a little anger left in me, but strangely I didn’t have it anymore. 

“You drive me insane,” I said under my breath. “I hate you.” 

“I know..” He sighed. 

“Wait. Don’t stop,” I cut, when he stopped tapping his hand over my blanket in his soft organized rhythm. 

“What?” 

“Your hand. Don't stop. Keep tapping. It’s very comforting. Slowly, like this.” I gently tapped on his chest, giving an example.

“You’re like my baby nephew,” he chuckled, hands continued my example. 

“I hate you sometimes… but being apart from you..” I paused, trying to compose myself. “With all the fights we had.. make me realize how you’re also already a part of me. It’s almost..” 

“Inexplicable,” he completed my sentence. 

“Yes.. It’s inexplicable. And It’s crazy. Why I kept on missing you when I was supposed to be angry with you. Why?!”

  He pulled me closer. “I understand. I miss you too, Jonghyun. Like crazy.” I felt his heartbeat was a tad bit faster when he said that. 

“That is why, let me make it up to you." He planted a kiss on top of my head. "I will tell you everything when you feel better. But for now please don’t get too worked up.” 

“Keep tapping,” I said. 

“Alright.” 

“Until I fall asleep,” I glared at him. He kissed my cheek and did as told. 

 

 

The next morning. 

“Minhyun! Wake up!” I said urgently when I saw who was standing in front of me the moment I woke up from my sleep. 

“It’s not like what you think, Aaron.” 

“I didn’t know you would recover this soon, Jonghyun. Last night must have been hot,” said Aaron. A cheeky grin started to curve on his face. “Thank goodness I decided to visit you this morning or it would have been awkward.”

“Nothing happened! Min! Hyun!” I pushed him, trying to escape from his arms. 

“What? More tapping? Or do you want more kisses?” Minhyun groaned, still  half-asleep. Aaron raised an eyebrow at the remarks, inciting what he thought was right. 

“Shut up!” I squealed at Minhyun. “Wake up, Mr. Hwang! Aaron is here.”  

“Oh don’t mister-hwang him for the sake of me, Jonghyun,” Aaron teased on the situation. “Just call him comfortably, like baby or hubby maybe?” 

 

“Good morning, Mr. Hwa..ng..” Seonho emerged from the door, bringing paper bags of food in both his hands. “Oh my, did I just disturb something?” He wriggled his eyebrows at me who was still trapped inside Minhyun’s arms. 

Great. Now even Seonho was going to join in the band to make fun of me because of this giant boyfriend of mine beside me. Though I admitted he looked rather adorable this morning and he took care of me very well last night that's why he looked so tired now. If only these two goons were not here staring at us with their naughty expressions, I would have planted one or two kisses on his face  “It’s going to be a long day of recovery,” I sighed to myself.

—  to be continued. 

Chapter Text

Day 3

“Minhyun, fetch me the newspaper, please.”

Minhyun squinted his eyes after hearing my request but still did as told. “Here you go, Director Kim.” He formed his cheeky smile while handing me the newspaper.

“Well, thank you, Secretary Hwang,” I replied, playing along with his sarcasm. I saw him smirking at the sentence. “Oh, could you please close the curtain a little? It’s too bright,” I added before he went back to his desk in our shared hotel room in Shanghai. 

“Is this okay, Director Kim?”

“Hm..hm..” I hummed my approval. 

“Do you want anything else?” 

“Do we still have the apple from last night?” 

Minhyun nodded, opening the fridge and brought one to my overbed table. “Wait let me wash my hands first. I’ll peel them for you,” said my boyfriend. I grinned at his initiative. 

For the time being, we were still in Shanghai while Aaron and Seonho had already went back to Seoul. The doctor allowed me to be discharged from the hospital, but Minhyun insisted that I shouldn’t travel out of the country until I fully recovered from the post surgery. 

He booked us a hotel near the hospital just in case some sort of complication happened. We had been staying in this hotel room for three days straight. I spent my days mostly on bed rest and it started to get boring. My sources of entertainment in this hotel were only the TV, mobile games and my strict boyfriend. 

Minhyun took good care of me in his way. He prepared my three meals a day by following the strict diet menu from the doctor and the nutritionist. He set a reminder for all my medicines and vitamins on his phone so I could always take them on time. 

At 9:00 in the morning and 4:00 in the afternoon, as recommended by the doctor, he would get me to move around the room to strengthen my muscles with a little physical activity. There’s no room for laziness. Everything was organized in discipline, just very much like him.

It’s not that I hated it, I sometimes admired that side of him actually. But getting bored while seeing him being all stiff made me want to bend him even more sometimes. 

 

30 minutes later.

“Minhyun,” I called him. 

“What?” he hummed, eyes were fixed on his laptop screen. 

“What are you doing?” 

“Sending email.” 

“Do you know where the remote control is? I can’t find it.” I searched around on my bed, wanting to turn on the TV. He rose from his seat and helped me find it. It slipped in between our pillows.  

 

10 minutes later

“Minhyun, water.”

“It sounds more and more like an order instead of a request, doesn’t it, Director Kim?” Minhyun glared at me from behind his laptop. 

“Why?” I grinned in innocence. “Are you annoyed?” there’s a mix of satisfaction in my tone. 

“No. Of course not.” He forced a smile and stood up to get me a glass of water from the cabinet. “Anything for my boss,” said Minhyun, while handing me a glass of water. 

“Ah, I really want to eat some cup noodles,” I whined, sinking my face into the pillow. 

“No, you can’t,” Minhyun strictly warned. 

“Just one cup.”

“No.” He shook his head.

“How about one bite?” 

He still shook his head. “You shouldn’t eat spicy food with high sodium yet,” he recited the doctor’s advice into an even longer version. 

“Then I want ice cream.” 

“Dairy and sugary food are prohibited too.” He knitted his eyebrows, glaring at me like he’s about to get mad.  

“This is like a prison!” 

“Yes, you’re right. Here is a prison and you’re my prisoner.” He sat next to me on the bed, wrapping up my body in his arms. “You can’t go anywhere without my permission and you must eat healthily and take the medicine as prescribed by the doctor,” said Minhyun while pulling me in and peppering light kisses all over my face. 

“Ugh. Let me go!” I tried to push him away. “Get away from my face, Minhyun!” I giggled in between while trying to escape from his tickling lips. 

“I love you,” He mumbled while pressing his lips on my left cheek, refused to let go. I surrendered as he pushed and I fell my head back on the bed. He adjusted into my position and leaned down to a full mouth kiss. 

His lips touched mine like the waves crashed onto the shore. Slow, yet strongly unstoppable. I wrapped my arms around his back, slipping a hand under his shirt to feel his warmth. I loved the sensation of having him between my arms, feeling his sturdy weight pressing down on top of my body. 

As he covered me, he also started to slip his hand under the back of my shirt. It’s getting increasingly intense when I met the fire in his gaze. That moment we knew, none of us wanted to stop. He breathed in the scent on the skin of my collarbone. He trailed up more kisses from my neck, my jaw and to the dimple of my chin before finally he dove in again for my lips. 

I bit the lower part of his lips and pulled it slightly, refused to let go of his before I opened up to welcome more of his heating kiss. We danced around, tightly, passionately, it’s almost merciless. 

Hands automatically traveled to pull up each other’s shirt, desperately wanted to enjoy the natural form and feel every inch of the exposed skin. Minhyun managed to pull up my shirt over my head first and I helped to pull his up as he’s dying to undress too.

Our bare chests crashed onto each other when we dove in for another kiss. Mouth to mouth, skin to skin, lingering around in our motion.

The sun was still high but we’d already spent the day by making out like we wanted to pay back for all the times we spent for fighting in instead of making out. 

As the tension was rising, our movements started to become harsher than just passionate. Until the pain in my wound started kicking in again. Minhyun managed to pull away when he heard me yelping over the unbearable pain.

“S..sorry.. Jonghyun,” said Minhyun, still trying to pick up his breath. “I’m sorry. Are you okay?” He looked concerned. He tried to calm his nerves and one aroused thing down under his pants. “It’s been a while… since I.. You’re making me crazy.” 

“You’re not the only one.” I briefly looked down to my pants, showing him that I was also under the similar state. Minhyun chuckled at the sight. He leaned forward to kiss my forehead.

“Let’s take a breather,” he whispered, with his forehead was pressed against mine. “We can continue after you recover, okay?” I sighed and nodded at his suggestion.

“Hug me,” 

“Come here.” He complied. I plopped my head on his shoulder while he’s humming and patting my back. I felt helpless, I wanted more but I had lost all my energy over this darned wound. 

 

Day 4

“Jonghyun, you smell kinda funny,” said Minhyun while brushing through my hair with his fingers in this slow evening. “I think it’s your hair.” 

“Of course it’s my hair. I haven’t washed it since we left the hospital.”  

“Come, let me wash it for you,” he said, already half-way to the bathroom, leaving me with no choice. 

***

 

“I think there are some good points in being sick,” I mumbled while sitting in the bathtub, having my scalp scratched by Minhyun. 

“Like what? Getting your hair washed by your boss?” 

“Boyfriend!” I corrected. “Why are you always positioning yourself as my boss?” 

“Because I am your boss.” He pressed his fingers, started massaging my head. I sighed as Minhyun proceeded to wash my hair quickly yet thoroughly. 

“Alright, done. Come on, take off your clothes, let’s get into the shower,” he said after rinsing all the shampoo off my hair. 

“No!” I refused almost spontaneously. 

“What? Why?” 

“No,” I glared at him, still refusing. “It would lead to.. Well, you know.. We barely escaped it yesterday,” I hinted at our previous heating encounter.

“Oh.” He caught my gesture. “Right..” he chuckled at the thoughts. 

“Stop imagining!” I hit his thigh. “Get out! I can take a shower by myself.” 

“I would just help you take a shower though. I won’t touch you.” 

“Yeah right. Who would believe that?” I rolled my eyes at him. “Even when I’m fully clothed, you always find a way to touch me,” I added while pushing him out of the bathroom. He chuckled at my rebuke. 

“Be quick though, Jonghyun. I need to take a shower too.” He pointed at his soaked clothes. 

“Yes, sir.” 

 

The midnight 

“Hwahhhh!” I jolted out of a nightmare in my bed. The room was cool but I was drenched in sweat. 

“Jonghyun, what is it, baby? Are you okay?” Minhyun put aside his laptop and approached me on the bed, his glasses were drooping a little down his nose bridge before he pushed it back to its position. His hair was still dampened after the shower. 

"You’re covered in cold sweat,” said Minhyun, he took the towel off his neck and wiped the sweat off my face. 

“I...I.. had a night..mare.” I stuttered and panted. My hands were still trembling as I was trying to gather myself. The dream was felt suffocatingly real. It almost felt like the murder attempt incident was repeating itself. 

“Try to breathe, Jonghyun,” said Minhyun with his hand stroking my back in circles. “It’s okay. I’m here. You’re safe with me,” he whispered, pulling me in as soon as he saw me had already breathed in normal again. 

I told him what happened that day. About how everything was repeated in my nightmare. “I am scared, Minhyun.” I held my tears. “In my dream, a scary man barged into this room and stabbed me with a knife.” As I told him, I could feel like there’s a burning pain started crawling into my wound. I became anxious. 

“Can we go home tomorrow?” I looked at him, with the tears holding in my eyes. “I don’t want to be here anymore.” I stooped my head down to his chest and shrank myself in between his arms. 

“Yes.” He kissed the top of my head, while wrapping his arms around me. “Let’s go home tomorrow, Jonghyun,” he said. “But for now, let’s take a rest here, okay? I'll be with you.” Minhyun took off his glasses and shifted into the bed with me. He lied on a stack of pillows, as he’s pulling me in closer than ever in his embrace. I rested my head on his chest. I felt so scared yet relieved that I had Minhyun with me. 

—  to be continued.