I heard Bi sonbae yell out nuna’s name; she’d stayed behind to talk to him whilst Skye and I went off to get a drink. I turned around and I saw nuna lying limp in his arms.
“Nuna!” I shouted as I ran towards them.
“Call for an ambulance,” Bi sonbae shouted as he carried her up in his arms.
“What happened?” I asked him as we walked quickly towards the backstage exit.
“I don’t know. We were talking, and she said she thought the lights blacked out, then she just suddenly collapsed.”
“She just collapsed and I caught her before she hit the floor.”
“Shoei, what’s wrong?” Jun Jin hyung came up to me.
“Nuna collapsed. We’re taking her to the hospital. Can you please tell Jae Joong hyung?”
“Okay,” he said as he turned and walked in the other direction.
Luckily, there were ambulances on standby at the auditorium in case there were any mishaps, since there were so many people at this event tonight. We climbed into one of the ambulance and Bi sonbae laid nuna onto the bed in the ambulance.
“What happened?” the guy in the ambulance asked us as another closed the door.
“She just suddenly collapsed,” Bi sonbae explained.
They put the oxygen mask on nuna and started to read her blood pressure and checked her heartbeat. I held her hand and I felt like crying. What was wrong with her? Was she working too hard lately? I hadn’t been watching her enough lately. She must’ve overworked herself again.
About an hour later, I was in the doctor’s office with Bi sonbae, waiting for the doctor to come.
“Don’t worry,” Bi sonbae smiled as he patted my back. “I’m sure your nuna is fine.”
“I hope so,” I sighed.
The doctor finally walked in and sat down.
“Doctor, what’s wrong with her?” I asked.
“I looked at her records, she has a history of gastric?”
“Yes, but she hasn’t complained of any pains recently.”
“Is she on any other medication? Painkillers for injuries, perhaps?” the doctor asked.
“She’s been taking something for her knees. She sprained it a week ago,” I explained.
“There’s the problem then,” the doctor said.
“What do you mean?” Bi sonbae asked.
“She has internal bleeding.”
“Internal bleeding?” I said in disbelief.
“Yes, and the reason she didn’t feel the pain was because of the painkillers she was taking,” the doctor explained. “Another few days, it would’ve been fatal,” he added.
I fell back in my chair and I could feel the blood drain from my face. A few more days and nuna could have lost her life.
“Hey, Shoei, don’t take it so hard on yourself,” Bi sonbae said. “No one knew that something like that could happen.”
“Yes. People are usually unaware that something like that could happen. She needs to pay special attention to the kind of medication she takes from now on.”
“Thank you, doctor.” Bi sonbae answered for me. “Can we see her now?”
“I’ve sedated her for now, but you can go in and see her. She’ll need to stay here for a week or two.”
“Alright, thank you, doctor,” Bi sonbae said and tugged at my sleeve. “Let’s go Shoei.”
Outside the office, we were greeted by Jae Joong hyung and Skye.
“How is she? What happened?” Jae Joong hyung asked as he shook me.
“She’s alright,” Bi sonbae said as he pulled Jae Joong hyung off me.
“Alright? Then why is she in a hospital?”
“I meant that the worse is over. She’s safe now.”
“What happened?” Skye asked.
“She has internal bleeding,” Bi sonbae explained.
“What? Internal bleeding?” Jae Joong hyung exclaimed, and he probably turned as white as I was now.
“She didn’t feel any pain because of the pain killers she was taking recently,” I added.
“Then how is she now? Does she have to stay here?” Skye asked.
“She’s stabilized for now. Another few days and it would’ve been fatal.”
“Fatal?” Jae Joong hyung and Skye exclaimed.
“Let’s not crowd here,” Bi sonbae said as he steered us away. “Let’s go see Sierra.”
On the way to nuna’s room, I turned to Bi sonbae.
“Komawo,” I said.
“For what?” he asked.
“For being there to catch nuna, for coming with me to the hospital,” I said.
“Small matter. It just so happened that I was there,” he smiled.
We walked into nuna’s room and saw her lying there, asleep. She looked pale and it pained me to see the tube connected to her wrist, the oxygen mask on her face. I could’ve lost her.
“Sierra,” Jae Joong hyung whispered as he took her hand and caressed it with his thumb.
“Hyung, where are the rest?” I asked.
“They’ll come after the MKMF. We can’t all just disappear. Bi sonbae’s disappearance had already caused a commotion.”
“Oh, right… I was supposed to perform. Haha!” Bi sonbae laughed.
“But I think the fans sensed that something has happened,” Skye said as he sat down.
“Turn on the television,” I said. “The awards should be on, live.”
We searched for the remote and when we found it, turned it to the channel where the MKMF was being broadcasted live. Helix was performing at the moment.
“Wow… they’re scary,” Skye said.
“Huh?” Bi sonbae looked at Skye, confused.
“I mean they’re scary as competition. Thank god we belong to different genres. I don’t think it’ll be easy with them as direct competitors.”
“I think S-Cube can hold their own against Helix,” Bi sonbae smiled.
“Komawo,” Skye beamed at him.
“Hey! Don’t you need to perform later?” Bi sonbae asked Jae Joong hyung.
“I do. They’ll be fine without me,” Jae Joong hyung replied.
“You should go back there,” I said. “We can’t all get into trouble. Nuna won’t be happy.”
“I guess,” Jae Joong hyung sighed as he stood up. “I’ll be back later.”
“Okay. Don’t worry, we’ll watch over her,” I said as he walked out the door.
We sat there and watched the MKMF on the television. We won the Best Lyrics award. Too bad we weren’t there to accept it. Jun Su went up to accept it on our behalf.
“On behalf of Skye and Shoei, thank you all. Unfortunately, something came up and they can’t be here to accept this award personally. They would’ve wanted to be here, since this is such a huge achievement. Once again, kamsahamnida!” he said as he raised the award up in the air, and the audience cheered.
“Hear that, nuna?” I said as I turned to her. She was still sleeping. “We won Best Lyrics.”
“Stop talking to her as if she’s in a coma,” Skye scolded me. “She’s just sedated.”
“Right…” I laughed at myself for being so solemn.
“Bi sonbae, you don’t need to stay with us, you should go back,” I said.
“It’s alright. I’m playing hooky now. If I go back, I’ll have to work,” he smiled.
“If you say so,” I shrugged.
Half an hour later, it was TVXQ’s turn to perform. As usual, it was a brilliant and elaborate performance. To top it off, they sang live. In the past, SM made them lip-synch for most of the performances and this led to them being heavily criticized. We’re glad that we were allowed to sing live these days. It helped us prove that we could perform live.
“Is it tough being a soloist?” I asked Bi sonbae.
“It is, I guess. I have no band mates to share the burden at each performance,” he said. “But the great part is that I get all the attention from my fans. I don’t need to share it with anyone,” he added with a laugh and Skye and I laughed with him.
“Yea… sometimes I wish this fella here would disappear, and I could have all the attention of the girls to myself,” Skye said.
“Excuse me, aren’t you in a relationship now? I’m so gonna tell your girlfriend,” I threatened Skye.
“Ah… you know I’m joking. Don’t tell Hae Rin,” Skye quickly said.
“Who’s Hae Rin?” Bi sonbae asked.
“His girlfriend,” I replied.
“Is she in SM too?”
“Yea, she’s a trainee. But she’ll debut in another 6 months.”
“Cool,” Bi sonbae smiled. “And who’s your girlfriend?” he asked me.
“My girlfriend? Don’t have one.”
“Shoei worships the ground nuna threads on. And as long as he uses her as a role model to measure all potential girlfriends with, he will remain single for the rest of his life,” Skye laughed.
“You like your nuna?” Bi sonbae asked.
“She’s dating Jae Joong hyung! How can you say that, Skye?” I glared at him. “It’s more like I see her as how a woman that I want to date should be,” I explained to Bi sonbae.
“I see,” he smiled.
“I admire all her qualities, and I hope the girl I date will have them… and more,” I smiled.
“You greedy pig,” Skye remarked.
“Shuddup, Skye,” I said and turned my attention back to the television.
2 hours later, TVXQ, Super Junior and Ri In walked into the room. A nurse followed after them and demanded that at least half of them stayed outside.
“This is not a social gathering. You can’t all crowd in the room. The patient needs to rest,” the nurse nagged.
“Nae…” we replied, and half of the guys from Super Junior and Bi sonbae went out to wait.
“How did this happen?” Yun Ho hyung asked.
“Here we go again,” Skye rolled his eyes and we retold the whole story about the diagnosis.
“God…” Yun Ho hyung said, almost in a whisper. He turned to look at nuna, and I could see the concern in his eyes. Nuna, you’re a very lucky woman. So many people care for you.
“She’ll be fine,” I said as I patted his back.
“I can’t believe that it was so serious. So serious that she could’ve died,” Jae Joong hyung said. He was sitting in the chair right by nuna’s bed, holding her hand.
“Yea. She looked fine. I mean, it’s normal to look tired since we all barely get enough sleep. But who knows under it, there could be such a serious problem,” Chang Min commented.
“This is a lesson to us all. Be careful of the medication that you consume,” Jun Su said.
“Bi sonbae was the one who carried her to the ambulance, I heard,” Yoo Chun said. “How come?”
“She was talking to him when she collapsed,” Skye explained.
“Good thing she was. Had she been just walking or even in the washroom, who’d be there to catch her? She’d have ended up with more injuries,” Hee Chul hyung said.
“Did the fans catch on already?” I asked.
“Some of them caught up with us after the MKMF and asked us where you guys went,” Chang Min said.
“And what did you tell them?” Skye asked.
“I just told them you guys had an emergency.”
“Good,” I said. “I don’t think they should know yet. We’ll need to wait for Shi Kyung hyung’s advice before we make a statement.”
Just then, the nurse popped her head into the room.
“You need to leave. Visiting hours are over,” she said.
“Can one of us stay?” I asked.
“Yes, only one person can stay. Can the rest of you leave now?”
I wanted to be the one to watch over nuna, but Jae Joong hyung would not have it, so I left with the rest of the guys. I guess I will never be the first one she sees when she opens her eyes.