Bluebells - everlasting love.
Day 1: Kim Seokjin sees Min Yoongi.
The croaking of a frog and the splashing of water hitting water echo throughout a hidden valley. In this valley, tall grasses cover its plain entirely with a thin and shallow river running down one side of the two mountains. There is a pond near the middle of the valley that connects the river with a waterfall. It is decorated with polished stones and some wooden Japanese pond decorations. Different types of fish and amphibians dwell in this water. Beside this pond, this is a relatively small-looking hut. The hut is built with some dark-colored wood and is covered with vines and different types of flowers. There are a small garden and a porch attached to the back of the hut. In this hut, there lives a young boy, named Min Yoongi.
Yoongi is a special boy. He lives alone in this hut. He gathers his food and supplies within this valley. A normal day for Yoongi consists of waking up, eating, tending the garden or reading a book on the porch. No one comes into this valley to visit Yoongi, except his best friend. His parents live far away from him and his valley. When he reads on the porch, he occasionally stares into the distance through the tall grasses and the fog that surrounds this valley. The fog prevents people from entering or leaving the valley. There is a huge tree that stands abnormally tall on the other side of the pond, opposite the hut. Its branches and leaves spread largely across the valley, covering most of the sight of the sky from the ground.
On the porch, there is a rocking chair. Yoongi sits in it as he reads a book that is thrice his size. Even though the book is enough to stand as tall as Yoongi’s tiny body and is as thick as an encyclopedia, Yoongi doesn’t struggle to hold it upright and flip its pages as he effortlessly reads.
Today is a little different from usual. His best friend is visiting him once in a while. Yoongi sits in his rocking chair and swings it lightly. His gaze wanders away from the tiny words etched onto the brown-colored page into the mess of tall grasses.
“When is Kook going to be here?” Yoongi wonders while he turns a page.
His wandering eyes stop at the rustling of the tall grasses. A mess of yellow-blonde hair pops out among the green. Yoongi’s body jerks into a stop, startled by the sudden intruder. Yoongi’s nose twitches as he takes in the scent of the intruder.
“It’s not Kook…” Yoongi mutters as he pushes the book to a side, letting it suspend in the air.
Yoongi trains his sight on the yellow mess among the green, waiting for a face to appear as it edges close to the hut. A gasp is let out as a boy, looking at the age of 8 years old, emerges from the tall grasses. The boy has blonde hair, clear brown eyes, plump lips and strong structured face with baby fats. Yoongi tilts his head in confusion when he takes in the boy’s appearance.
“Hey, you!” Yoongi calls out without hesitation, grabbing the boy’s attention to Yoongi.
“You can see me?” Yoongi tilts his head as the boy’s eyes widen in surprise at Yoongi’s presence.
“Who are you?” Yoongi says as he appears in front of the boy in the next second.
The boy falls onto his butt at Yoongi’s sudden appearance. His eyes water a little, his brows knit together and his lips morph into a frown. Yoongi raises his hand towards the boy and smiles.
“I’m Yoongi. I live here alone.” Yoongi introduces, in hopes of soothing the boy’s fear.
“I’m Seokjin. Kim Seokjin.” The boy’s voice is quivering as he mumbles.
Seokjin takes a hesitant step forward as he grabs Yoongi’s reached-out hand.
“You must be from the village at mountain’s foot!”
Yoongi pulls Seokjin up from the ground and leads him to his hut, cautiously avoiding the crops and bushes in his garden. Seokjin takes a curious look at their surroundings. His brown eyes glisten at the calm and serene scenery. Before he can get mesmerized by it, Yoongi’s honey voice pulls Seokjin out of his thoughts.
“You mustn’t. This place is dangerous for humans.” Yoongi says as his grip tightens around Seokjin’s fingers.
“Where are we?” Seokjin asks. He has a cautious tone.
Seokjin examines Yoongi’s appearance. Yoongi’s ashy blue hair in a low ponytail. Yoongi’s long eyelashes and sharp feline eyes with pale green-colored irises. Yoongi’s button nose. Yoongi’s small cherry lips with a natural slight pout. Yoongi’s milky-colored complexion and soft skin. Yoongi’s white plain pullover and grey sweatpants. A simple home wear in comparison to Seokjin’s hiking outfit, a beige hat tied to his neck, a green vest with a white undershirt and a pair of khaki shorts.
“A valley behind the mountain. There’s a forest that connects the foot of the mountain to this valley. You must have been very unlucky to get lost in the woods.” Yoongi explains as he stops and points towards Seokjin’s shoes.
“Come on in. Let’s get you to patch up before you head back.”
Seokjin pulls off his sports shoes, dirtied with mud, to reveal his squeaky-clean white socks. He places them at the side of the wooden stairs and follows Yoongi into the little hut that Yoongi claims to be his home.
“Sit over at the couch. I’ll be right over.” Yoongi says as he disappears into a corner.
Seokjin takes his time to get himself over to the couch. The hut seems bigger inside than what it is seen from the outside. The light-colored furniture contrasts with the dark-colored wood the hut is made out of, creating a cozy atmosphere. There are multiple blue-colored potted plants sitting in front of the round windows, white translucent curtains hang neatly with a rope tied to secure the cloths at the side. The sunlight lights the hut up as the lamps on the furniture stay off.
“Those are bluebells. They’re beautiful, aren’t they?”
Seokjin tears his eyes away from the potted plants to Yoongi, who is carrying a tray of cotton, medicines and a teapot. Seokjin nods in reply. Yoongi places the tray onto the maroon-colored coffee table. There are teacups neatly placed in the middle. Wait, there is a coffee table in front of the couch? Seokjin tilts his head in confusion.
“Show me your knees.”
Seokjin is puzzled at Yoongi’s words. He looks down and sees both his knees scratched up. He gasps, “It’s bleeding!”
A giggle escapes Yoongi’s lips. Yoongi’s eyes curls into crescents. He puts on a rubber glove and dabs the cotton with disinfectant. Seokjin pulls his legs up to his chest and Yoongi goes over the wounds lightly.
“The leaves are sharp.” Yoongi hums as he goes over Seokjin’s cheek with a new piece of cotton.
The smell of the disinfectant attacks Seokjin’s sense and disgusts paint over Seokjin’s expression. Yoongi gets some plasters dabbed with ointment and helps put them over the scratches. Yoongi removes his glove. He pours warm water into one of the teacups and hands it to Seokjin.
“Seokjin? I can call you that right?” Yoongi asks as Seokjin slowly ingests the water.
Seokjin nods as he continues to sip in the water. It’s sweet!
“So, Seokjin-” “Wait! You look younger than me! How old are you? I’m 8!” Seokjin interrupts Yoongi.
Pfft. Yoongi keeps his laughter in and continues.
“Hyung.” Yoongi addresses without answering Seokjin.
“Hyung, how did you get here?” Yoongi asks.
“Uhmm,” Seokjin thinks hard, tightening his grip on the teacup, “through the woods?”
“Did you see anything weird?”
“Uhmmm… Ah! There are sparkly bubbles in the woods! I followed them and found myself in those tall grasses!” Seokjin exclaims, his arms flaying around to mimic the bubbles floating in the air.
“… Kook?” Yoongi thinks while nodding in acknowledgment of Seokjin’s words.
“Yoongi! What’s that?”
Seokjin’s question brings Yoongi out of his thoughts of his best friend, who has yet to appear. Seokjin is suddenly in front of the front door, which has a big glass pane in the middle. He is pointing outside of the door. Yoongi looks over.
A whale is in this air. His fins are moving like wings. Several schools of fishes follow behind the whale.
Yoongi’s eyes widen a fraction.
“Hyung, you can see that?” Yoongi asks as he joins beside Seokjin. He shifts his attention towards Seokjin’s lit-up face. The excitement in Seokjin’s eyes shines brightly. That excitement sparks something inside of Yoongi.
Yoongi has decided. He looks at Seokjin again and he says, “Hyung, do you want to be my friend?”
Seokjin puzzledly looks at Yoongi, but answers sincerely, “Aren’t we already friends?”
Yoongi’s light green eyes glisten with tears and curl into crescents. The biggest smile appears on his face. Yoongi grabs Seokjin’s hand into his and opens the door. He guides Seokjin out of the hut and upwards. A surprised gasp from Seokjin as he tightens his hold on Yoongi.
“Hyung! Let’s play!” Yoongi squeaks excitedly.
“Yoongi-ahhhh!” Seokjin raises his volume as they get higher and higher, away from the ground.
Seokjin looks over to Yoongi as they float in the air. Curiosity overwhelms the fear in Seokjin’s eyes. Seokjin’s voice finds its way back and he asks, “who are you, Yoongi?”
Seokjin never gets his questions answered.
They float around for hours and hours, interacting with the flying creatures but somehow the sun never sets. Yoongi lands themselves on top of the huge tree. They spend hours and hours more talking and talking.
“Hyung. Seokjin. Seokjinnie.” Yoongi interrupts Seokjin in the middle of describing his family and close friends. Seokjin looks over to Yoongi, turning his attention to Yoongi.
Yoongi is staring at Seokjin, his eyes full of endearment. When Seokjin smiles at Yoongi, a hint of sadness flashes by in Yoongi’s eyes. Yoongi turns away from Seokjin and looks into the sky. Seokjin continues to admire Yoongi, his smile disappearing as he feels a sense of loneliness in Yoongi’s profile.
“Did you have fun?” Yoongi asks. His voice is small. There is a slight tremble that Seokjin doesn’t realize.
Seokjin exclaims a ‘yes, I did!’. Seokjin asks back the same question, “did you have fun too, Yoonie?”
Yoongi leans into Seokjin’s shoulder and nods. Yoongi is way smaller than Seokjin, that is why Seokjin assumed that Yoongi is younger than him. After a good minute, a newfound determination is lit up in Yoongi. Yoongi shakes his head and sits up straight. Yoongi turns to face Seokjin and gives him a smile.
“Hyung, you need return home,” Yoongi says.
Seokjin has said that he isn’t from the village. His parents bring him here for a vacation. Seokjin lives in a city a thousand plus miles away from where Yoongi resides. Seokjin is actually leaving the day after.
“Can’t Yoonie go home with me?” Seokjin asks, his hand reaches out to pull on Yoongi’s pullover.
A conflicted expression draws itself on Yoongi’s features.
“I can’t leave here yet. I’m not old enough to leave yet.” Yoongi replies.
“Will you wait for me?” Yoongi quickly asks before the child begins to tear up.
“Once I’m old enough, I can travel to your city!” Yoongi’s bitter expression seemingly makes Yoongi’s words unbelievable.
“You will?” Seokjin asks in an unsure tone.
“Promise?” Yoongi smiles while holding his pinky out.
Seokjin answers, locking his own with Yoongi, “promise.”
Yoongi pulls out a small charm. There is a miniature bluebell encased in this charm.
“This one looks different?” Seokjin asks as he takes the charm into his hands.
“There’s me in this. It isn’t as bright as the ones I grow. The petals are the color of my hair.” Yoongi says, moving his hands to remove the thin pale-yellow ribbon from his hair.
Yoongi carefully puts the ribbon string into the hole at the top of the charm and ties a dead knot. He closes up Seokjin’s fingers and says, “a present for you.”
Seokjin’s brown eyes light up Yoongi’s gift. Seokjin takes in Yoongi’s appearance again. This time, Yoongi’s hair smoothly falls around Yoongi’s shoulder and moves along with the slight wind. Yoongi’s beautiful. Seokjin thinks.
Suddenly, the wind gets stronger. There is incomprehensible shouting and then, silence.
When Seokjin opens his eyes again, he sees the wood wallpaper of his bedroom. He sits up in cold sweat. There is something in his hands. It is a small bluebell charm. It’s not a dream.
Or that’s what Seokjin continues to believe.
Everyone he tells about Yoongi and their adventures dismisses Seokjin just has a wonderful imagination. Even the charm that Yoongi made for him has become a mere present from his parents from the village they visited for the vacation.
Seokjin continues to believe. He waits for Yoongi’s arrival. He remembers that Yoongi tells him about waiting for him when Yoongi gets older. He waits.
1 year. 2 years. 5 years. 10 years. 20 years. 30 years. 40 years. 50 years. 60 years. 70 years.
Seokjin has grown up. He has studied high school, graduated from university, gotten a degree, dated someone, married someone and adopted some children. Seokjin doesn’t forget. Seokjin simply gets over it after 80 years. Now, Seokjin lays in the hospital. The charm he always kept by his side sits on the bedside table.
Seokjin hazily looks at the ceiling. He hears someone entering the ward. He smells the fresh bouquet of flowers mixed into the smell of disinfectant.
Seokjin hears little giggles around him. He sees the little heads that pop into his peripheral vision. Having no strength to turn his head to face them directly. He answers with a smile, “aigo, little buddies.”
More giggles escaped from his three little grandchildren. Another person walks into his vision and his world tilts downwards. The person is his adopted daughter, and she helps him into a sitting position by shifting the bed.
“Dad. We’re here! I’ve brought Taehyung, Taehyun, and Dahyun over! Darling has a meeting, so he’ll be late.” Seokjin’s daughter says as she gathers the three kids from running all over the room.
“Grandfather! We want to hear more stories!” Dahyun says excitedly as she thrusts her small fist into the air.
Seokjin gives a hearty laugh.
“Come closer and listen.” Seokjin says with his eyes turning into crescents, “when I was young…”
“Grandfather! Does Yoonie have wings?” Taehyun chirps.
Seokjin shakes his head, and says, “it was a magical moment. I felt so warm when we started flying…”
Taehyung listens to Seokjin’s story closely. Strange little bubbles fly into his vision, dragging Taehyung’s attention away from Seokjin’s words. Taehyung looks at the open window. The curtains are flowing with a strong wind. There is a man, with ashy blue hair tied into a high ponytail. He is sitting on the window’s edge.
Taehyung’s brown eyes are met with the man’s pale green ones. The man looks about to be in his 20s. They keep eye contact with each other, and the man breaks his silence.
“Hello little one,” the man smiles.
Ah. This must be grandfather Seokjin’s Yoonie.
Taehyung keeps silent, scared that his voice will ruin this magical moment. But Taehyung wants to say hi back. Yoonie, however, puts a finger to his lips. Yoonie gets down from the window and strolls over to the opposite side of Taehyung, on the other side of Seokjin. Yoonie’s fingers caress over Seokjin’s cheeks. His natural pouty lips morph into a gentle smile.
“Say ‘hi’ for me, little one.”
When Taehyung blinks, the next second Yoonie has already disappeared. Taehyung let out a gasp, before letting a small voice out, “Yoonie said hi.”
Seokjin pauses his talk and looks at Taehyung. His expression becomes blank from Taehyung’s words. With emotions piling up like water overflowing a container, Seokjin cries. It is a silent cry, a cry of relief and happiness.
Yoongi fulfills his side of the promise, that he comes to visit Seokjin, and that he is safe.
It only takes him 80 years.
Outside, Yoongi is floating in the air, above the roof of the hospital. There is another man with him, looks slightly older than Yoongi. The man is Kook, or Jungkook, Yoongi’s best friend. Jungkook puts a hand over Yoongi’s shoulder.
“He is human. You shouldn’t have used the Chronos back then. Stopping time for a human and losing your freedom for the last 50 years.” Jungkook reminds Yoongi.
“Seokjinnie must have heard me…” Yoongi turns his head away from the hospital.
“Yoons,” Jungkook warns, his grip tightening on Yoongi’s shoulder.
The following week Seokjin has passed on. A smile on his wrinkled face and a small bluebell charm in his hands.
Years later, in a faraway land of the unknown, a place of bluebells.
Yoongi turns towards the owner of the voice. A big toothy smile graces upon Yoongi’s face. There is a figure in the light.
“Seokjinnie hyung! You’re late!”