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Darlin'

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Nayeon unconsciously hums a song.

 

“Since when do you hum songs?” Jeongyeon asks Nayeon.

 

“What are you talking about?” She replies.

 

“You were just humming.”

 

“Are you sure? Sometimes when my brain really gets moving, it makes noise. I feel like I know this song by heart, but I can’t pinpoint exactly what it is.”

 

“It’s just an earworm, Nabongs. It’ll come to you in the blink of an eye.” Jeongyeon rolls her eyes out of boredom.

 

“Okay. (Singing) Five little monkeys jumping on the bed. One fell off and bumped his head- Mama called the doctor and the doctor said-- No.”

 

“Is this seriously what we’re doing the rest of the night?” Jeongyeon complained.

 

“I’m surprised you have to ask.” Nayeon continues singing.





The next day, Nayeon decides to call customer service.

 

“Hello, yes, I’m having an earworm problem and I was hoping if you can figure this song out. Daaaa, da, da, da, da, daaa, laaa. You honestly don’t have any idea what this song is? Well, thank you, you’re no help at all.” 

 

“So you have a song stuck in your head. It happens to everybody, Nayeon-unnie.” Jihyo stated.

 

“Well, I’m not everybody. I have an eidetic memory and I should be able to remember what song this is, but I can’t. Something’s definitely wrong with me.”

 

“This is the dreadful day that would come that I’ve been fearing long ago. This is my sign to descend into madness, where I cautiously test the limits of public nudity.

 

“Public nudity?” Jihyo questioned.

 

Jeongyeon walks in the apartment the exact moment Jihyo questions.

 

“Eh, that just means going barefoot.” Jeongyeon chuckled.





Meanwhile…



Mina has second thoughts whether she’ll call Quint, her supposed date that ruined their evening. The guy wouldn’t spare a second to stop talking about himself not until they get to the point of talking about past relationships and Mina somehow mentioned Nayeon’s name and that piqued Quint’s interest. 

 

And so, she chooses to dial his number for the sake of trying to get over the quirky, stubborn, but lovable Nayeon.



“Hi, Quint. Uhm, it’s Mina.”

 

“Oh, How are you?”

 

“Terrific. And I’m surprised to hear from you Mina. Given the fact how I acted the whole night on our last date.”

 

“Well, we both made mistakes, you know. I took the last fry and dipped it with ketchup, you nattered over my ex-girlfriend like she was Leonard Nimoy and you were like my ex-girlfriend.” Mina mumbled.

 

“So, to what do I owe the pleasure?”

“I was wondering if you’d like to get dinner again sometime.”

 

“Yes, please. Let me just check my schedule.” Quint eagerly said. 



“This man’s obviously trying to seem like a man with things on his schedule.” Mina thought.

 

“How about Saturday?” 

 

“Saturday works!”




Jeonghyo’s apartment

 

“For the love of whoever’s up there, Jihyo baby, Nayeon’s been humming for the whole afternoon! Please do something before I get an ear stroke.” Jeongyeon covers her face with a pillow to muffle her agony.

 

“Nayeon-unnie, why don’t you take a break and do something else for a while?” Jihyo advised.

 

“I’m taking a break actually. There’s this little vlog project I’ve been meaning to work on.”

 

“Okay, great! What is it? Jihyo and Jeongyeon enthusiastically exhaled.

 

“Greetings, Dear Crazy Future Nayeon, you were driven mad by an earworm. Your mind, once your valuable forte, is now a sack full of parrots and monkeys that bumped their heads. So, I’m going to tell you everything you need to know. Uh, first, you and you alone are the dazzling, fascinating, marvelous, and beautiful Nayeon. If ever someone doesn’t agree with you, straight up put an end to all of those who deny the alluring Im Nayeon.” 

 

“Jeongyeonnie, I told you if we were patient, she’d figure it out on herself.” 



Thus, Jeongyeon continues to muffle her screams in agony on the beloved pillow.




Mina’s apartment

 

“So you’re really going out with the Quint guy again?” Sana sips her wine.

 

“Why not? He’s an okay guy. He’s a very nice guy as well.” Mina admits.

 

“But he spent the whole evening on your date talking about how much he loves Nayeon.”

 

“Quint’s just a die hard fan of her work. Besides, he said he wouldn’t bring it up again.” 

 

“Watch him talk about himself the whole date, Mina.” Sana snorts.

 

“But jokes aside, where’s he taking you?”

 

“Oh, he’s coming here. I’m actually making dinner.”

 

“Ooooh, that’s pretty much a big step, Mitang.” Sana says amusedly.

 

“It is?”

 

“Basically, yes. You’re inviting him into your home. It’s intimate. It’s where your underpants live.”

 

“You know what, Sana? This is good, beyond great even. I tried to get back with Nayeon, but she shot me down. Quint likes me. Maybe intimate fits me.”




Jeonghyo’s apartment in the middle of the night

 

Nayeon picked up her piano keyboard and played the repetitive tune she’s been humming for the past week.



“Oh. My. God~. She won’t stop.” Jihyo annoyingly groans.

 

 "ʲᴱᵒᴺᴳʸᵉ⁰ⁿⁿᶦᵉᵉᵉ, ᴵ ᵗ⁰ᴸᵈ ʸᴼᵘ ᶦᶠ ʷᴱ ʷᵉʳᵉ ᵖᵃᵗᶦᵉⁿᵗ, ˢʰᵉ'ᵈ ᶠᶦᵍᵘʳᵉ ᶦᵗ ᵒᵘᵗ ᵒⁿ ʰᵉʳˢᵉˡᶠ."Jeongyeon mimics her lover’s words from earlier.

 

“How in the world does she come up with new ways to be annoying?” Jihyo grunted.

 

“For all I know, she’s THE Im Nayeon, she’ll do anything and everything to get what she wants. Secondly, she’s naturally annoying and that’s mainly the Im Nayeon way. Lastly, can you please go to her?” Jeongyeon uses her full will to pout so Jihyo will be weakened by her pouty glances.

 

“Fine.” 

 

“I love you~~.” Jeongyeon dreamily mutters.

 

“Who cares?” 

 

Jihyo does her motherhood duty so she sneaks into Nayeon's room to save the Jeonghyo apartment in peace.

 

* What are you doing in my room? Stop it. YAH. That’s mine! ᵂʰʸ ᵃʳᵉ ʸᵒᵘ ˢᵒ ˢᵗʳᵒⁿᵍ ? *

 

Jihyo walks back into their bedroom as she calmly states,  “Problem solved.”

 

* tuba noises *

 

“I forgot to mention that she’s got a tuba.” Jeongyeon scratches her hair as she realises they have no chance of getting sleep tonight.








“This is perfectly cooked and must I add, this is delicious Mina.” Quint states.

 

“That’s very kind of you.”

 

“It’s been a long time since I had a home-cooked meal.”

 

“When you were married, did your wife cook?” Mina queries.

 

“Not at first, no. But when she began cheating on me with a French chef, she became quite a prodigy in the kitchen.”

 

“So, a little type of a silver lining I suppose?” 

 

“Hmmm, I guess so, yeah. By the way, how long have you been living here?” Wanting to change the subject, Quint didn’t want to recall the past events of his failed marriage.

 

“About five years. I’m actually thinking of moving to a better place now that I don’t need to be so close to she who must not be named.” Mina trailed off.

 

“I do. The brilliant physicist that I now know lives in the area, not that I care.” 

 

“My fault. I brought her up.” Mina claimed. 

 

“Yeah, well, let’s change the subject. Shall we? No more mentions of you-know-who. That’s a cool Twice Lovely character. Where’d you get that?

 

“This is gonna be a long dreadful night.” Mina predicted.




“Dah, duu, dara, bum-bum, bah, du, du , dut. This song will endlessly end my entity. Have you guys ever dealt with something that’s so irritating?” Nayeon declared.

 

“That’s a trick question, right?” Jeongyeon contemplated.

 

“I’m not surprised, there's a multitude of intellectual people descending into madness. I can give you guys a list of historical geniuses and their mental disorders. Tesla fell madly in love with a pigeon who he claimed loved him back. Gödel, on the other hand, thought that someone was out to poison him. He was so sure of this delusion, especially later in life, that he would only eat food that his wife had cooked, and usually made her taste it first, just to be sure. When his wife was hospitalized for six months, Gödel stopped eating and starved to death.” Nayeon recited aloud from her Google searches.

 

Jihyo chimed in, “Maybe Tesla had bread in his pockets?”

 

“Google also articulated that the list extends out of science: Painters like Van Gogh and Pollock, chess champion Bobby Fischer, Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. 

 

Don't know if words can say

But darlin' i'll find a way

 

I remember the song. It’s called Darlin’ by the Beach Boys. Oh, thank goodness. I’m not crazy. I don’t have to take a pigeon as my bride!” The mad genius beamed in celebration.

 

“I wonder why it was this certain song that was stuck in my head for so long.” 

 

“I don’t know. It’s pretty catchy.” Jeongyeon expressed.

 

“Do you even like the Beach Boys?” Jihyo inquired.

 

“Jihyo, they have beach right in the name. What do you think?” Nayeon teased.

 

*Nayeon snaps her fingers. As she knew the answer right away.*

 

“It’s about Mina. It’s so hard to unlove her, why? I’d rather choose to die. She’s an ecstasy that made me high.” 

 

“Jihyo, Jeongyeon. Consider the lyrics, ‘I was living like half a man. Then I couldn’t love, but now I can. More soul than I ever had. I love the way you soften my life.’ Nayeon gushes over the lyrics.

 

“Mina did soften your life, didn’t she?” Jihyo remarks.

“Constantly, Consistently, Continually, Yes. Mina’s like the dryer sheets of my heart but now, I have to go.” Nayeon beamed in determination.

 

“Aww, my Jihyo, my honey bunch sugarplum, pumpy-umpky-umpkin, You’re my sweetie-pie. Am I like the dryer sheets of your heart?” Jeongyeon says in awe.

 

“Better. You’re the lint trap of my love.” Jihyo pouts.






“That’s an interesting tie clip.” Mina took note of Quint’s artistic appurtenances.

 

“That’s kind of you. It’s actually Avogadro’s constant. It’s useful for calculating the number of atoms in a substance, or causing regret in anyone who asks about it.” Quint babbled.

 

“Pardon for the continuous babbling, no one’s ever liked the tie clip before, so I just lost all control.”

 

Mina stammers, “No, it's okay, and we are on a date. I'm, I’m, just a little nervous.” 

 

“Well, no need to be nervous with me. I’m just a harmless being from a foreign land that gushes a lot about himself as well as uttering your ex-girlfriend’s works most of the time.” 

 

Good to know you consciously acknowledge the topics you’ve been tackling about you and yourself for the entire time. Mina resists the temptation to kick her date out of her apartment and most importantly out of her life.



Mina pulled herself together as she breathed, “You know, I’m just being silly. I, I don’t know what I’m waiting for.”

 

“(Knock, knock, knock) Mina? (Knock, knock, knock?) Mina? (Knock, knock, knock) Mina?”

Nayeon does her usual compulsive knocking ritual before she enters any room.

 

Mina stares dumbfoundead as she is astonished, “That’s Nayeon.”

 

“You’re kidding. Goodness gracious, how’s my hair?” Quint fixes up his appearance.

 

oKAY. That’s it, that’s the last straw, when and how was I able to keep up with this lad? 




“Nayeon, this, this isn’t a good time.” Mina sighed weakly.

 

Nayeon couldn’t wait any longer as she poured out everything she wanted to say, 

 

“I don’t care. Mina, There are one hundred seventy-one thousand four hundred and seventy-six words in the Oxford English Dictionary and yet I can’t form a fragment of a sentence to describe you. But I’ll try and hopefully you'll get the analogy of my explanation. There was a song I couldn’t get out of my head. Eventually, I realized the song was about you, and like that earworm, I can’t get you out of my heart. So, what I’m trying to say is, you’re my heartworm. The metaphorical kind, not, not the poodle-killing kind.”

 

 She no longer have words to say and the only word that she was able to muster up was, 

 “Eh?”

 

Quint finds a way to be helpful ( for the first time ), “If I may, I believe what she’s saying, in a charming and delightful way, is that she loves you and wants you back. I’m Quint, a huge fan of your work. Don’t mind me.” ( okay, now shut up. )

 

Nayeon realises, “ Oh , my apologies; I must go now for I hadn’t known you were on a date.”

 

“No, it, it, it’s okay. Keep going?” Mina encourages on.

 

“Myoui Mina, if you want to be my girlfriend again, I really want to be your girlfriend.”

 

Astounded, Mina responds:” I really want that, too Nayeonie.”

 

“Good. Because I love you, Minari.”

 

 “I love you, too.”

 

Quint peaks out behind the door to say, “Kiss her, you brilliant fool.”

 

Nayeon makes her way towards Mina as if she still couldn’t make out that the woman in front of her continuously grants her a gentle like feather sensation in her life. This is most likely the one and only time she prays to all the Gods, Goddesses, and deities up there to never let them be apart from another once again for she is the luckiest person in the whole wide world. 

 

She then, starts to lean in, pulls her angel closer and closer until there’s no space between the both of them.

 

Mina gazes upon a woman at work. A look at how art is a labor of love, a timeless act, that can be gazed upon for all of eternity.

 

Both of their eyes squeezed shut as their lips finally touched.

It started off as a gentle kiss, but soon their kiss defines, yearning. Yearning for a touch, a hold, a kiss. A kiss they’ve both been longing for. Desperation to clutch to one another for they both fear to let go for air. 

 

Eventually, air has yet to be a problem and so they break apart, Mina rests her head on Nayeon’s chest as they lovingly sway. 

 

Nayeon, steps back as she mutters, “Well, I’ll let you get back to your date.”

 

“Get back in here, dummy.” Mina grasps Nayeon's wrist as she pulls her dummy back for a scorching kiss.



(Quint not having a slightest clue that he should’ve left at least an hour ago.)




Quint, being a fool that he is, ( decides to awkwardly stand still ), “Okay, then. I’ll, uh, see myself out. Mina, thank you for dinner. Dr. Im, pleasure to meet you, ma’am. Uh, if perhaps sometime you have a spare moment, I’d, uh, love to discuss physics, or shoot the breeze, as you Yanks say. Ah. What a lovely evening.