Category: Romance, NC-21, Chaptered
Cast: Cha Eungi, Choi Siwon, Cho Kyuhyun
The way Eungi scolded Kyuhyun seemed like a great idea to repair his attitude. From that night onwards, Kyuhyun quits from being a snob and becomes an obedient student in Eungi’s class—the other professors still talk about how rude he is in their classes though. He comes on time, do the assignment as he told to and he stops whining to get her attention. She likes to think that he’s being like that because he finally realizes that it’s not his place to even try to mess with his own professor and she enjoys the peaceful treatment she gets from him. Eungi also likes to believe that Kyuhyun is taking her bait when she intentionally called him a ‘kid’ in order to slaps his pride. She sees big potential in him and the brilliant mind she sees in him is covered with his ignorance that keeps holding him back, so the only way to wake him up is to hurt him right on his soft spot.
For the past eight weeks, he tries his best to prove her that he’s more than smug kid that’s hiding under his father’s shadow. He secluded himself from his friends and other students as he starts to study more in order to impress his lovely professor. He didn’t like the way she looked at him when she called him ‘kid’, she’s only several years older and she has no right to call him like that.
But it hit him, it hit him hard in the right spot.
“So I just got back from a seminar in Copenhagen yesterday and good news is, they liked my proposal and asked me to improve the main idea into something practical.” Eungi stands in the middle of the room before she dismisses her class.
Her students clap their hands for her. “Awesome Kyosu-nim!!” the buffed guy cups his mouth to makes his voice sounds louder.
“Thank you, Kangin-ssi.” She smiles.
As she predicted, after couple of weeks her students begin to respect her as their professor—glad about the fact that she’s their lecture even—because she turns out to be one of those cool teacher that allows her student to explore their ideas without limits, unlike the other old professor. She’s also one of those lecturer that always have the answer to her student’s problems—academic matters, of course—instead of telling her student just to ‘google it’ whenever they have a question. The girls start to consider her as an oenni and sometimes even ask her to join them for lunch and the boys sitting quietly while secretly admiring her every move in front of the class.
“And I’d love to recruit two of you into joining this project with me.” She adds her announcement.
Some students raise their hands immediately.
“Wait, I can’t just pick anyone. This is not a regular class assignment so it won’t affect your score at all.”
Some of them sigh from disappointment.
“If you’re really interested in manipulating the eco panel into something useful for everyday use, I’d like to see your proposal. I’ll pick two students to collaborate.”
“What will we get, Kyosu-nim?” A girl raises her hand.
“You will get your name cited in the proposal and if chosen you’ll come with me to Copenhagen to present our ideas. Being cited in an international summit is an honor that not every student gets to taste, Nara-ssi. You’ll get your name recognize by the international board and who knows what that will do to your career later on. So please try to look more excited.” Eungi explains.
Her students begin to discussing with each other and starts to make the class noisier than it already is.
“So! To sum up!” Eungi claps her hands to get their attention, “In case any of you interested in joining me, please give me your proposal and portfolio of your previous works so that I can choose two students to collaborate. Is there any further question?”
No one answers.
“Well then, class dismiss. See you next Monday!”
Kyuhyun is looking for Eungi in her cubicle the next day, but as usual she’s not there. In his head somehow her voice repeats when she says ‘have you make any appointment?’ so he decided to look for her in her usual hiding place.
Once he gets himself into the café where she usually hangs out to avoid her colleagues, Kyuhyun spots her sitting by the window with a cold latte and some cookies. Kyuhyun approaches her table and a smile forms on his face once he sees her falling asleep while supporting her head with her hand on the side. There’s no paper nor laptop in front of her so she must have been super tired to even considered to work. He slowly lifts the chair in front of her so he doesn’t make a sound that’ll wake her up and he quietly sits to enjoy the view in front of him—it’s not her prettiest moment of her but it still gets him grinning happily to see her innocent face and the cuteness of her sexy lips slightly pout when she’s sleeping.
Kyuhyun takes out his phone to capture the rare sight in front of him, it feels like a long time since he talked to her. He’s been keeping his distance from Eungi since he’s trying to prove her that he’s worth something else than just being his father’s son, one of the reason he comes looking for her today is also that. He wants to try his luck in her research and hopefully he gets a spot to join.
Eungi’s head suddenly slips from her hand as it about to hit the table hard enough to wake her up—badly. Kyuhyun’s fast enough to reacts by catching her head by his left hand before she’s woken up by the impact. She opens her eyes after she experience the sensation of falling and surprised to see that her student’s hand is holding her head instead. She lifts her body to a straight sitting position while she’s still blinking fast to adjust the bright light.
“Cho Kyuhyun-ssi? What are you doing here?” She wipes her face and tries her best to get back to her senses quickly.
“Take your time, Kyosu-nim. You seem to be very tired.” He chuckles to the look in her face, she’s catching up with her surrounding but she tries to look very awake.
Eungi covers her face with her hands and takes about a minute to collect herself.
“Did you pull an all-nighter last night?”
“To have fun?” He tries to make a casual conversation.
“Do you even do ‘fun’?” He chuckles once she lifts up her face from her hands.
She pouts her mouth a little then puts on her serious face. “So, what honor do I have to get your visit, Kyuhyun-ssi?” She takes her latte and drinks it down.
Kyuhyun slides a bundle of file he prepared with him towards her. “This is my proposal and portfolio. I know it’s not much but I hope I can join your research.”
Eungi jaw drops as she hears him, she knows how much he’s improved since she offended him that night but she never thought the change would be this positive. She takes the file in the middle of the table and begins to look into it.
What caused him to hardly pass his class is still a big question for her. looking at his proposal and his previous works, Eungi will definitely considers Kyuhyun as one of those gifted students that should graduate fast and get a lot of job offers afterwards. His concepts are exceptional, his understanding of the design elements are on point, his drawing is even better than hers, and Eungi really likes the way he collaborates modernism with traditional Korean value in his every works.
“What do you have in mind about the green panel?” She lifts her head from the file and look into him.
“Well, I’ve been thinking to adapt the technology into something that’s used in every houses—roof tile. I mean your concern is mostly about heating in the houses and my concern mostly about the panel that’s now still unaffordable for most households. I believe if every house owns one, South Korea will save up a lot of money in fossil fuel.”
Eungi stares at him in disbelieve. He looks like a same person but he’s totally different.
“Kyosu-nim, why are you looking at me like that? is there something on my face?”
Yes, you’re polite now and it’s weird. Eungi shakes her head, “I like your view in that. you’re right, we can save a lot of energy with that thought alone.”
Kyuhyun bites his lips nervously, he never has anyone praising him for anything he’s done. His professor just looks at him in awe and he’s not used to be treated like that.
“Cho Kyuhyun, you’re one of a kind.” She smiles at him, “You know what, judging from this file—and some of your friends already sent theirs as well—I gotta say I’d love to collaborate with you.”
Eungi nods, “Yeah sure, why not? For a student, you’re idea is beyond your year and it’s out of the box. Have you ever been in any research before?”
He scoffs, “I never pay attention in class, why bother being a teacher’s pet.”
“So why are you applying?” She lifts his file with a big question in her face.
“So I get a chance to get closer to you.” He answers honestly.
Eungi can’t help not to be amused. “Why would you want to get closer to me?”
He stares at her in the eyes weighing his chances, I want to prove that I can be a man to you.
“Who knows you can help me graduate faster.” He chose to lie to her.
Eungi’s mouth pulls up on their sides and forms a smile. “Okay, fair enough. I can’t promise you anything about your graduation, but think I can assure you that you’ll gain something from this project—at least you’ll be known internationally.”
“When do we start?”
“As soon as I announce who’s the other kid is.”
Kyuhyun cringes when he hears her say the word ‘kid’, seems like his effort hasn’t really paid up just yet.
“Do you have anyone in mind?”
“Hwang Nara seems like a promising candidate.”
He rolls his eyes, “You know who she is, right?”
Eungi leans back on her seat as she spreads her arms then yawn. “Who is she? Sorry I don’t really keep up with my student’s background since I got a lot of them.”
“She’s our head of department’s daughter, of course she gets amazing portfolio.”
Eungi scratches her head in frustration, “Aish, I pick the wrong ones then. The owner’s son and the head of department’s daughter. People will think I’m involved in nepotism.”
A receipt placed on top of the table when three people had gathered at night while working for their project, the waitress just can’t wait for them to finish so she can go home. She’s been sending signal to them by informing the last order time, she even roughly lift up the empty chairs in the café onto the table to note her guess that it’s closing time.
Cha Eungi, Hwang Nara and Cho Kyuhyun each focus themselves on their own laptop as they tried to mash up their concept together.
And finally the waitress feels the need to stop being nice.
“Costumer-nim, we are closing—it’s should close like fifteen minutes ago actually. So if you don’t mind.” She taps the receipt book.
Eungi reaches into her bag and begins searching for her wallet when Kyuhyun beats her to pay the bill.
“Kyuhyun-ssi, I’m the one that should pay since I’m the one initiated this meeting.” She finally finds her wallet.
Kyuhyun ignores her words and give the receipt book to the waitress and apologized for staying too late.
“You get to pay next time, she’s been waiting long enough for you to dig in your bag anyway.” He begins to save up his works before closing the windows one by one then shut his laptop down.
“Hwang Nara-ssi, I think what you drew is great although we need to fix the rendering a little bit.” Eungi check Nara’s work in her laptop. “We’ll continue tomorrow?”
Hwang Nara nods and relieved because she can finally go home. She likes working in this project mainly because she’s interested in Eungi’s offer about having her name recognized and stuff. Another reason she likes working in this project is of course the hot senior that happened to be chosen to do this project with her. The girls in their campus are weirdly attracted to him still no matter how bad his reputation among girls.
Eungi has been watching Nara’s awkward body languages towards Kyuhyun since they started working on this project two weeks ago. She speaks cuter to him, how she tries to touch him for unnecessary matters and also how she always tries to make small talks. Personally, Eungi can’t remember a time when she did all those to get boy’s attention—but then again, it’s not like she had to.
“Oppa. It’s late, will you drive me home?” Nara tries her aegyo voice to attract him.
Eungi swears she can see Kyuhyun eyes roll back when he hears this and this sight is amusing to her.
“You should.” Eungi cuts his excuse, “It’s late and she’s a pretty girl.” She’s trying hard to suppress her playful smirk to Kyuhyun.
Nara smiles to Eungi to thank her while Kyuhyun feels like he needs to scold her.
“But Kyosu-nim, you’re also a pretty lady.” He begins his counter attack, “I can’t let you go home by yourself either.”
The smile in Nara’s face disappears a little bit.
“Ah! I know!” Kyuhyun exaggerates his tone, “How about I take you both home.”
“I can go by myself, appreciate the offer though.” Eungi push the cafe door open for the three of them and walks fast towards the bus stop.
Kyuhyun catches her hand quickly and keep her near him. “Come on Kyosu-nim. It’s late and I can’t sleep peacefully if any of you pretty ladies stranded in public transport.” He pulls her forcefully as he gives Nara a sharp look to follow them into his car.
“Nara-ssi, where do you live?” He asks.
“Noon.. I mean Kyosu-nim, where do you live?”
“Mapo-gu. See it’s far away, I’ll just grab a cab.”
“Nara-ssi, you live nearby so I’ll take you home first, and then I’ll drive Kyosu-nim. I don’t want to look like your driver so please take the front seat.” He opens the shotgun door then points Eungi to sit which she follows and that leave Nara to sit on the back.
The drive from the café to Nara’s home takes only ten minute since its pass midnight and there’s no traffic, but it feels like the longest ten minutes in Kyuhyun’s life. The girl keeps talking about almost everything: clothes, music, her friends, a new restaurant opened near her house—and she also implied for them to try to have a dinner there—and so on. Kyuhyun tries his best to be polite by turning on his sound system but the girl at the back keeps talking. He knows if Eungi is not in the same car with them, he’d be kicking Nara out soon enough and won’t give further thoughts about his manner, but since he still tries his best to impress the woman on his right, he swallows his annoyance patiently.
Nara tries her luck to ask Kyuhyun to walk her to her door, but lucky for him he has Eungi as an excuse so he says he’ll just standby from his car and will only drive off once she enters the fence.
“That was… intense!” Eungi speaks up once they begin to drive off again.
“Noona, you enjoyed teasing me back there.” He throws her a sharp look, “it’s late and she’s a pretty girl” Kyuhyun tries to imitate Eungi’s words.
Eungi laughs, “She likes you, Kyuhyun-ssi. I can tell.”
“I know. But I don’t like her. Clingy, nosy and noisy girl is not my type.”
Eungi continues to laugh and she notices something that tweaks her interest. “Ya Kyuhyun-ssi, is this the M series?” She points to the three diagonal stripes colored light-blue, blue, and red next to a capital M on her dashboard.
Kyuhyun takes his eyes from the road for a few second to stare at her in disbelieve. “You know car?”
“Wow, I didn’t notices earlier because you almost dragged me to get in. I once again was wrong for having a prejudice towards you.”
“I thought you’re a ‘Jaguar’ kinda guy. I mean with all the money you could spent on those prestigious muscle cars, you pick the M series. I’m proud of you.” She’s gives him her two thumb up and grins happily.
“Not a big fan of Jag since they evolve their futuristic silhouette into something boring they do these days.”
“I know, right? Though they made a real master piece with the E type that looks like a spaceship.” Eungi’s getting more enthusiastic with their conversation.
Kyuhyun feels like his body is bubbly from the excitement he gets whenever they’re together. She continues to amazed him, it’s actually his first time to have a crush on somebody based on her value instead of her looks—not that he has a problem with her appearance—and the more he spend times with her, the deeper he falls into his own trap.
“Noona, you never sound so sexy, jinjja, you never ceased to amazed me.” He laughs to disguise his nervousness.
Eungi laughs some more, “Girls talking about cars, that sexy to you? I’ll leave that tip to Nara so she knows what to talk to.”
He chose to ignore her last comment.
“Shall I take it for a spin?” Kyuhyun offers her something she can’t resist.
“Not too fast though.”
“That’s not the point, Cha Eungi.” He presses his right foot further down to speed up his car.
The empty road past midnight is the perfect place to test out his driving skill and the power his car has. Eungi’s sit quietly on his right but she has this ecstatic expression on her face.
She knows car because she dated Siwon. He’s a big car enthusiast and he would always try to influence Eungi into liking his hobbies. He sometimes would take her for a spin in his Audi and they always have the argument which car engine is better—Eungi always stands for Aston Martin and BMW while Siwon always believes in Audi and Mercedes.
Last summer the both of them were enjoying their breaks by looking for the best man-made road to drive in Europe and that was the ultimate road trip in her life. She likes the sound of the blaring exhaust once the valves in the engine do its job, she’s fascinated by how fast the object surrounds her moves when they drove by 120 miles/hour, it’s one of the time where she felt like she’s problem free—in the fast moving car.
Kyuhyun slows down his car once they reach the patrol area and he turns his face to see how Eungi is next to him. Her expression confuses him, she’s smiling but her eyes are empty as if the emotion didn’t get to reach them, he knows she’s keeping something in her but he can’t really dig that up and sometimes that frustrates him.
“I thought you support green living, noona.” He teases her. “I didn’t know you enjoy excessive fuel burning and reckless driving.”
Eungi shakes her head a little bit to shrugs off her thought about Siwon earlier.
“I used to enjoy that.” She replies quickly, “Everybody has a guilty pleasure and mine’s happened to be a V8 turbo.”
Kyuhyun giggles to her answer.
“Proved me that BMW is better, I’d love to see the look on his face when I tell him.” She doesn’t know why she begins to talk about Siwon here and now to Kyuhyun. Her voice begins to crack as she tries not to fall into melancholy, “He won’t take my victory gladly though, but I’m sure he’ll accept the defeat like a man he truly is.”
Kyuhyun’s grip in the steering wheel tightens, he never thought his heart could crushed this bad when he hears Eungi talks about another man, and the fact that she sees him as a man and not a kid the way she sees him bothers him even more.
“Who is he?” Kyuhyun digs deeper into his own misery.
Eungi turns her head away from him and look to the window on her right.
“My fiancé.” A drop of tear manages to escape her eyes.
He’s not sure which one hurt him the most: seeing her cry upon remembering a man that she calls her fiancé, or the fact that she’s engaged. What he knows is he wants to take his own heart apart so he can’t feel the pain that’s burning inside his chest.