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the cat's predicament

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Everybody loves Na Jaemin. Everybody wants to be with Na Jaemin. All the girls and boys in town loves him, and every day, since he made the top ranks in school with this mysterious ability that he has, everyone has been dying to know him. Of course, Jaemin remains aloof, brushing everyone off with his bright smile that makes anyone wonder if he’s even rejecting them. 

 

Everything about Na Jaemin is bright, and someone could only hope to have his eyes on them. 

 

However, Jaemin is beginning to grow a little concerned about his lovelife. There are too many people vying for him, he can’t just date each one of them. He wants to find the love of his life, but with this attention and fleeting feelings, he won’t be able to. 

 

At least, he’s smart about this. 

 

So he made an announcement. 

 

Looking at the people in front of him, he easily lets out a smile to deliver his next few words. 


“Okay, listen up,” Jaemin begins. 

 

The crowd of wooers became silent. 

 

“Whoever opens my door will be the person I will date. However, the key to my house is around my cat’s neck,” Jaemin announces. 


The crowd murmurs. 

 

“So, good luck,” Jaemin singsongs and he walks away. 


~


Renjun hangs around Jaemin’s neighborhood, watching for a cat with a key around its neck. Of course, it didn’t take long. He saw it sauntering one afternoon, walking on the top of Jaemin’s house gates, its paws tiptoeing gracefully. 

 

Renjun watches it, anticipating the next position this cat would take. 

 

He waits patiently, following it quietly, watchful and clever eyes never taking his sight off of it. 


Suddenly, the cat leaped, and Renjun yelped, fumbling to use his powers. 

 

Renjun has the ability to freeze time briefly, but Jaemin’s cat quickly disappeared. His head whipped around in frustration, but he was unable to see it. 

 

“Urgh,” Renjun murmurs to himself. He scratches his head in irritation. “That damn cat.”


~


Haechan had an idea. He would lure the cat with treats, and then trap it so he can grab the key to Jaemin’s house.

 

He waits and waits, his bag of cat treats inside his closed, tight fist. He watches, and suddenly, a cafe brown cat leaps on top of the gates, then proceeds to sit down and lick its own paw. 

 

Haechan cooes at the cat, finding it very adorable. He whistles, then deciding to use his magical, unique voice, he begins to sing a song to lure the cat closer to him. 

 

The cat’s head perks up, its ears standing to attention. 


Yeah, that’s right, come to me, Haechan thinks to himself. 


Haechan continues to sing, and finally, he slowly takes out a treat from the bag and waves it at the cat. 


The cat purrs, and it jumps down from the gates. 

 

Haechan grins, and he puts the treat on the ground, and closer to Jaemin’s cat. 

 

“Hi cat!” Haechan greets. 


Then, he takes another treat after the cat finishes the first one and throws it in front of him again. Haechan takes a step back after this, and proceeds to do the same thing. 

 

When Haechan’s bag of treats ran out, and the cat is slowly finishing the last one, he quietly steps closer, hands ready to grab the cat. 


However, when Haechan grabbed the cat suddenly, it started clawing at him violently, letting out an ugly shriek. 

 

Haechan screams, and drops the cat, in which the cat lands on its four legs gracefully and runs away. 


Haechan sighs exasperatedly, and he stomps away. 

 

It was worth a try. That day, Moon Taeil stares at him curiously, and Haechan begs him for a hug. 


~


So far, no one has succeeded in catching Jaemin’s cat. People are complaining to him, but Jaemin receives each complaint with his usual, bright smile which makes them stop and forget all the thoughts in their head. 

 

Jaemin’s cat is impossible to catch. It is violent, quick on its feet, very, very hostile. 

 

The opposite of Jaemin, to be honest. 


Everyone wonders why Jaemin would have such an unkind pet with him. 


~


Jeno sits on his usual bench in the park, his eyes allowing itself to observe nature and just relax. He comes here when school gets hard for him just so he can wind down. He sees kids laughing and playing around, and that cheers him up because he was once like them: so carefree and unknowing of the world. 

 

There are animals in the park too, and Jeno is glad to come across them. The birds sing so beautifully as well, and by the pond, frogs leaped and croaked. Everything fits so perfectly. 


One day, a cafe brown cat saunters by, and Jeno saw the key around his neck. 

 

Curiously, he watches the cat, wondering why there’s a key around his neck. Does it have an owner, and is it missing? 


As if the cat knows that it’s being watched, its head turns to Jeno. 


Jeno gulps, seeing the strange, amber eyes staring straight at him. 


Then, he crouches lower, and holds out a hesitant hand. He is allergic to cats, but it didn’t mean he hates them. He loves animals. This is the reason why he’s at the park almost every week. 

 

Jeno cooes, his hand open towards the cat in a friendly manner. 


“Hi…” Jeno says when the cat approached him. 


The cat meows, and Jeno’s heart flutters. 


“Aren’t you a pretty thing?” Jeno cooes, running his hand on the cat’s head. 


Then, Jeno turns his head away, and covers his face with his arm. 

 

And he sneezes. Loud. 


The cat hops away, but not too far away. Instead, it peers at him curiously. 

 

Jeno sniffs, and his shoulders drooped. “I’m sorry, cat. I’m allergic to you,” he murmurs sadly. 


The cat meows, and Jeno thinks that it sounded almost sorry. 


“Yeah, I know right?” Jeno continues to talk. “It’s strange. I love cats though.”

 

Jeno stands up, rubs his nose and then smiles at the cat gently. 


“Are you lost, maybe I can help you?” Jeno inquires, crouching down low again. He reaches for the cat, but in surprise, the cat hops away. 


Jeno chuckles. “Don’t worry, I won’t hurt you. I just want to see the key if it the address of your owner. And don’t worry about me. The allergy isn't that bad.”


Jeno’s voice must have been sincere and calm, so the cat goes to him. 


Jeno smiles as he hefts the cat into his arms like a baby, and then he examines the key. He flips it over, and reads the address on it. 

 

“Oh, look at that. You live nearby,” Jeno muses to himself and the cat. “You know, you shouldn’t wander too far. Your owner might get sad.”


The cat could only purr and rub its head on the crook of his elbow. 


~


Jeno arrives in front of the said house, and he looks at the key again to make sure. 

 

The cat keeps rubbing its head on the crook of his elbow, and Jeno kept sneezing on the way here. The cat leaps from Jeno’s elbow, but then slinks itself in between Jeno’s legs. 

 

“Hey, cat. What are you doing?” Jeno asks, wiping his nose and his teary eyes. 


The cat purrs insistently, and Jeno takes it again into his arms. 

 

“I don’t know what to do?” Jeno asks, but it was more to himself. 


Jeno’s eyebrows drew itself closer to each other, as he thinks about his next step. 

 

Well, he can’t just leave this cat out here. 


Jeno takes the key from the cat’s neck, and he walks to the gates. He rings the doorbell, but there was no answer.

 

He opens the door that was sized for a person. He’ll just drop off this cat here, and then leave. He was already trespassing. 


When he was inside the compound, the cat immediately ran out of his arms and into its designated door. Jeno smiles, and then suddenly, the door fit for a human person opens. 


A tall teenager comes out, his cafe brown hair resting on his forehead. 

 

Jeno immediately notices his long eyelashes. 


“I’m sorry, I swear I’m only here to return your cat,” Jeno says, his heart dropping to his stomach. 

 

Jaemin chuckles, and he runs his fingers through his hair in amusement. “So, it’s going to be you.”


Jeno raises an eyebrow, confused. 


Jaemin walks toward him, his hand outstretched. “Congratulations. Today’s our first day.”


Jeno gawks at this teenager, unsure if he heard the right words. “What?”

 

Jaemin rolls his eyes. Then, he transforms into a cat in a blink of an eye. 


Jeno gasps. 

 

Then, Jaemin returns to his human form. “You’re now dating me,” Jaemin winks. 



Jeno stares at Jaemin, but then, a smile creeps over his lips.