I squinted at the light as it flashed again.
“Let’s go,” Yun Ho said as he stood up.
My vision cleared and it turned out the light I saw was from the flashlight of the janitor.
“Komapseumnida,” we bowed as we walked out.
“Ye,” the guy answered and shut the door after we walked out.
“Are you alright?” Yun Ho asked me as I wobbled alongside him.
“I kinda fell asleep, so I feel a bit woozy now,” I explained.
“Then hold on to my arm,” he said, and I obliged.
As we neared the main entrance, we realized that a small group of reporters were gathered there.
“Shit,” I said, under my breath.
“Reporters,” Yun Ho said. “Someone must have tipped them off.”
“What do we do?” I asked him.
“I’ll go get the car and you wait at the side exit for me.”
“Okay,” I said, and we split up.
As I walked towards the exit, my phone rang.
“Where are you?” Jae Joong asked me as soon as I picked up.
“HQ,” I said.
“Didn’t you say you were coming back more than an hour ago?”
“I left my phone in the conference room, and Yun Ho drove me back to get it. Then some fool locked us in the room.”
“Again?” he said incredulously.
“Yes… again,” I said as I rolled my eyes.
“Neo chigeum odiya?”
“I’m on my way out the side exit.”
“Someone tipped the reporters off that I was at the HQ with Yun Ho,” I said.
“And where’s Yun Ho?”
“Gone to get his car. He’ll pick me up from the side exit.”
“This is not a good idea. You should stay there,” Jae Joong said. “Call Yun Ho and tell him to come home. I’ll come over to pick you up.”
“You’re already home, why trouble yourself?” I asked him.
“It’ll be more trouble if you and Yun Ho’s photos get into the papers,” he pointed out. “Stay where you are, and call Yun Ho. Araso?” he said.
“Arasoyo,” I said.
“See you in awhile,” he said.
“Okay,” I said, and he hung up.
I dialed Yun Ho’s phone and he picked up after the 2nd ring.
“I’m on my way,” he said.
“Jae Joong said he’d pick me. He said it would be better if we weren’t seen together,” I said in one breath.
“He did? Well… good idea,” he replied.
“So I’ll see you at home,” I said.
“Sure,” he said. “You want me to come in and accompany you till he comes?”
“No,” I said. “It’s fine. Go on. Make sure you’re showered before I get home.”
“Ne oma,” he laughed, and hung up.
“Sierra,” a voice said as I turned around, and I screamed at the face that popped up in front of me. “Calm down!” he exclaimed.
“Hee Chul,” I said as I tried to catch my breath. “What are you doing here?”
“I had some work to do,” he said. “What are you doing here?”
“Waiting for Jae Joong to pick me up,” I said.
“Aww… the power couple of SM is still so loving… isn’t that beautiful,” he teased.
“Shut up,” I laughed and punched his arm.
“Right!” he suddenly exclaimed. “Jae Joong is driving, isn’t he?”
“Yea. Then he can take me home,” he said.
“What happened to your baby?” I asked.
Hee Chul recently bought a new car and always referred to it as his baby.
“My baby’s at the doctor’s,” he said.
“I think he caught a cold.”
“Did you take him out for a spin in the rain?” I asked him.
“I couldn’t help it. I wanted to get him home sooner, but the rain just had to come,” he smiled.
“Why am I even having this conversation with you?” I laughed.
“Yea… why? So can Jae Joong give me a lift?”
“Can anyone say no to you?” I raised an eyebrow.
“I don’t think so,” he grinned.
“So why bother to ask?”
“It’s fun!” he exclaimed.
“Sure… sure… and remind me why I have to call you oppa,” I said as I walked towards the waiting area to sit on the benches.
We spent the next few minutes gossiping and complaining about of schedules, until my phone rang.
“Omo… how sappy can you to be?” Hee Chul said when he heard my ring tone, Girlfriends’ ‘Maybe I Love You’.
I stuck my tongue out at him as I flipped open the phone to answer it.
“Ye,” I said.
“Come out the side exit,” he said.
“I’m coming,” I said as I stood up. “And we’ve got company,” I added as I walked towards the exit, with Hee Chul trailing behind me.
“Mwo? Nugu?” Jae Joong asked.
“He wants to surprise you.” I said.
“Just wait and see,” I said and I hung up.
“I can’t believe that is your ring tone!” Hee Chul started again and chattered all the way to the car.
I opened the front door and plopped onto the seat. Hee Chul did the same in the back.
“Annyeong,” he said in a girly voice and waved shyly, as if he was in awe to see Jae Joong.
“Hyung!” Jae Joong exclaimed. “What are you doing here?”
“Duh… working?” Hee Chul replied, now in his boyish voice.
“I think he was just loitering around the building. Since when does he need to work?” I joked. “Kim Hee Chul is a cash spinning machine. He just needs to sit and wait for people to feed him and take care of him.”
“Oi!” Hee Chul exclaimed. “That’s enough from you, little girl,” he said as he tugged my hair playfully.
“Omo… please don’t kill me, ajeosshi…” I giggled.
“Keumanhae… this is noise pollution!” Jae Joong laughed.
“You drive,” I said. “This is between me and Hee Chul ajeosshi,” I said as I turned around to poke Hee Chul.
“Who are you calling ‘ajeosshi’?” he said.
“You’re not ajeosshi? Mianhae haraboji,” I said.
“You… you…” he said as he pointed at me whilst pretending to be having a heart attack.
“Get a life,” I said in a mean voice.
“You… evil…” he gasped and ‘fainted’.
“Finally,” I said in a rapturous voice as I clutched Jae Joong’s hand, “we’re alone.”
Jae Joong laughed softly and traced my wrist with his thumb.
“Aha!” Hee Chul pretty much yelled as he bounced up between the seats. “I’m back!”
“Really…” I said as I rolled my eyes, then I laughed.
“So what’s kickin’ bro,” Hee Chul asked Jae Joong in English, black rapper style.
“I was ready to get into bed when Sierra kongju called,” he said. “I’m always rescuing her.”
“Why did she need to be rescued tonight?” Hee Chul asked.
“Because this ogre named Hee Chul was about to attack me,” I replied.
“I was talking to Jae Joong, not you,” Hee Chul retorted and I stuck my tongue out at him and crossed my arms.
“She was stuck in the building with Yun Ho. I asked him to leave without her so that they didn’t start any rumours,” Jae Joong explained.
“Good thinking,” Hee Chul said. “So what were you and Yun Ho doing at the HQ so late?”
“I left my phone behind, then some maniac locked us up in the conference room.”
“Again?” Hee Chul exclaimed.
“Yea… I told him I was with Yun Ho and asked him to come lock us in.”
“That’s not what I was getting at,” Jae Joong said.
“Neither was I,” Hee Chul said.
“No?” I said. “Seemed like it.”
“Keugo aniya…” Jae Joong said. “Hwanajima,” he added.
“Hmmph,” I said and turned to look out of the window.
“Don't mind her, Jae Joong,” Hee Chul said. “Talk to me.”
“I can’t do that, hyung. She’ll kill me when we get home,” Jae Joong said in a worried tone.
“You’re such a wuss,” Hee Chul said.
“Aniya… I just love her more than life itself. So I have to make sure she’s happy,” Jae Joong said in the sappiest way he could, and I cracked up.
“You’re such a liar, Jae Joong,” I said and smacked him on the arm.
“Yea… but my obvious lies get me what I want most of the time,” he laughed.
“Okay… I am starting to follow this weird relationship you two have,” Hee Chul said in the kind of tone a therapist would use.
“Huh?” Jae Joong and I said.
“You, Sierra, get upset. And you, Jae Joong, be sarcastic and make statements you obviously do not mean. Then Sierra’s anger vanishes, and you’re lovey-dovey again,” he concluded. “Mwoya?” he exclaimed at the end.
“You obviously have not dated enough,” I huffed.
“Yea,” Jae Joong said.
“Excuse me… I’ll have you know that I have many lady friends, and none of them are weird like you,” he said and he poked my head with his index finger at the end of his line.
“Oi!” I said as I rubbed my head. “Who are you calling weird, gay boy...”
“Gay boy?!” he screeched.
“Hey… hello… my ears,” Jae Joong protested, but we just ignored him and carried on bantering.
We finally arrived at Hee Chul’s apartment, and Jae Joong was only too happy to unlock the door and heave Hee Chul out of the car.
“Bye,” Hee Chul waved at us as he ran in.
“Bye,” we said in unison and wound up the window.
“Thank god…” Jae Joong sighed with relief, and when he turned to glare at me, I knew I was going to get a good lecturing from him.
“Hehe!” I giggled. “He started it,” I said, and all Jae Joong could do was roll his eyes and let out a sound of exasperation.