Recruiting restaurant, kitchen, and hall staff, recruiting drivers…
On the job recruitment site, I scrolled through the posts and closed the screen soon, irked.
It was inconvenient to have two mouths to feed when I was in a position with no academic ability or talent.
People said that it would be easy for someone to survive by doing whatever he could as long as he was healthy but then again it was not easy to leave a place I was fond of.
Even though he was my boss, I interacted closely with him to the point of addressing him as “Hyung”.
So far, I was indebted and I didn’t want to leave without repaying their kindness.
“Do you want to do it with me once?”
I was forced to admit hearing his words.
I was looking forward to a reunion with Jang Yoonsung.
The man who gave me a wonderful time 7 years ago.
But the Jang Yoonsung I met that day was different from then and I was disappointed.
When I worked at the bar, there were a lot of sleazy customers.
It wasn’t the first time that people wanted to sleep regardless of being opposite genders.
Such events were experiences but with a calm face, I shot back a reply at Jang Yoonsung.
“This is not some cheap club, you son of a bitch.”
In those types of situations, Seongwook hyung recommended that I keep my marbles and follow the store’s manuals.
But I didn’t ask if that suggestion applied to real deals.
Seongwook hyung wasn’t wary of the real deals for the sake of the store’s sales but it was because Seongwook hyung’s family business depended greatly on their family business.
I didn’t know he would be informed of something and I would be fired from the job, first thing.
I jammed the phone back into my pocket and started cleaning again.
“Yeah, yeah, he is here.”
Since the store was opening, everyone was busy by themselves in their respective positions, and in the middle of it, Seongwook hyung received the call carelessly and entered the hall while he talked.
He glanced at me and said ‘yes’ to the person on the call.
The strange pretentious tone he used bothered me.
“Today? Yeah, come.”
Then he exchanged a few more words and then hung up the call.
As I stared at him, Seowook hyung looked towards me as if he was totally clueless.
“Was Seo Kijoon?”
He is coming today.
But is he really, ‘that’? Why was he asking whether you were here or not?”
Jungho asked if Seo Kijoon was gay or not as a joke last time.
I shrugged my shoulders indifferently but it wasn’t that I was not aware of it at all.
Last week and that week as well, I rested on the day when Jang Yoonsung was likely to come.
Real deals didn’t come on Monday.
They usually drop by Tuesdays and Fridays in a week.
It was not a rule set in stone, but it worked out the same last week and that Tuesday as well.
Park Jongmin said that among them, Park Yoonsung came twice.
At the end of the day, they came looking for me.
That day, as expected, in the late evening all the real deals came by and Jang Yoonsung arrived long after.
Contrary to Park Jongmin’s account, Jang Yoonsung did not look pleased at all.
But I was busy without time to stall.
Jungho, who came after taking care of the warehouse, from the back door, carried two large bags of trash.
“Give that to me, I will throw them away.”
“Ah, I like when those guests come by.”
Throwing away the trash bags was one of the most troublesome tasks because to get outside, I had to run up and down the stairs.
Since the real deals barreled in, I particularly took the initiative, and if Jungho knew he teased me shamelessly.
“Don’t mess with me.”
“Then please, hyung.
After adding “thank you” twice, Jungho swiftly handed me the garbage.
I was only taking this responsibility because I had a prior plan so I willingly accepted the bags and left the door.
It was not that heavy but it was bulky, I whimpered up the stairs.
The night had sunk heavily.
The place where the trash bags were usually thrown was beside a wall in a narrow alleyway so I held both bags and waddles there.
I could feel someone’s presence behind me.
The car’s engine noise became more and more close and loud and someone suddenly hugged me and toppled together on the ground.
It flashed right in front of my eyes.
The sound of the trash bags being popped, the screeching sound of a car sliding, a black car, the reddish light of the streetlamps, the feeling of my body floating in mid air, everything very slowly and prominently pierced into my five of my senses.
Thump, I was touching the floor and after whipping my head around several times, I was barely able to recover my senses completely.
The sudden shock made me groan.
Fortunately, I didn’t get hit by a car so I wasn’t in as much pain as I thought I would be.
The large garbage bags which let out a loud sound as they burst to the point of drilling through my ears, slipped from my view and the car was in the process of running away in the other direction.
Even though that alley was usually quiet, since it was not that far from the main street, there
were unruly cars like that.
I was careless not to notice the exhaust sound from early on.
“Lee Hakyung, are you okay?”
The man who rolled over me rose slowly.
It was Jang Yoonsung.
He looked like a mess.
His hair was disheveled while his once clean shirt was dirty.
From the lips which asked if I was okay, a shallow groan breathed out.
I got up as well.
I was surprised but the pain soon disappeared.
I seemed to be alright.
As I nodded, he asked to check again.
“Are you really okay?”
“It’s fine, then.”
But Jang Yoonsung didn’t seem to be okay.
He grabbed his left arm and frowned.
Only then I noticed him acting unusual.
“Are you hurt?”
“I think so…I think I bumped into something.”
Jang Yoonsung bit his lips as if he was in pain.
“Hospital, no, should I call an ambulance?”
I rummaged through my pocket and searched for my phone.
My hands were shaking and I couldn’t stabilize myself.
While hesitating I asked, “Which one should I press?”, Jang Yoonsung said it was fine.
“Never mind the ambulance, just call Kijoon over.”
“Ah, Uh? But…”
“That will be enough.
It’s nothing much.”
The injured man was more carefree than I was.
No, rather than that he had an expression that he had lost his spirit as if he was exhausted.
I reached out my hand and examined his face.
Suddenly, memories of a specific event surged in my mind.
Whether or not he was aware, Jang Yoonsung closed his eyes and let me touch as much as I wanted.
After checking his hair to make sure there was no bleeding, I was able to go inside to call Seo Kijoon.
“Hey, what is this…”
Seo Kijooon didn’t say anything as he darted his eyes between me and Jang Yoonsung.
When I called him, it was obvious that Jang Yoonsung got hit by a car and even though I roughly explained the situation, it didn’t seem plausible to Seo Kijoon.
Jang Yoonsung searched his right pocket for the key and tossed it to him.
“I think I should go to the hospital.
Seo Kijoon accepted the car key easily but didn’t nod.
“How can I drive? I just had a drink.”
Whether Jang Yoonsung had lost his composure, he only realized that and furrowed his eyebrows.
Seo Kijoon took out his phone.
“What should I do, should I call someone or a taxi?”
Jang Yoonsung frowned again at the mention of calling other people.
Whether it was inconvenient or for other reasons, he just wanted to go to the hospital quietly.
Since he was hurt because of me, I thought it would be better if he could reach the hospital quickly so I raised my hand.
“Should I drive?”
After explaining the situation to the store, I accepted Seo Kijoon’s car key.
Jang Yoonsung’s car was a two-seater so three people could not ride it.
Jang Yoonsung asked me several times whether I was okay enough to drive because I had a hard time moving my arm.
Rather, I was embarrassingly fine.
It was not until Seo Kijoon urged Jang Yoonsung to climb inside the car, that he did with a disapproving face.
Of course, I couldn’t drive any better than an injured person or a drunkard.
Even so, I had a long career as a chauffeur so different car models didn’t really matter to me.
I turned on the navigation and entered Taewon Group hospital’s address and then I pondered on it for a while.
Would it be burdensome if I made it obvious that I knew about Jang Yoonsung?
But on second thought, it was a useless worry.
It was the nearest hospital from there.
I tried to search Taewon Hospital again.
“Not there, let’s go to S Hospital.”
Jang Yoonsung said as he stared at my fingertips.
It was Seo Kijoon’s hospital.
“Our hospital? Why? Taewon Hospital is closer though.”
Seo Kijoon asked cluelessly.
“My house makes a scene if I cough a little.
“Oh, was it because of that accident? Has it already been 7 years? I heard you survived off of death bed.
Seo Kijoon was convinced and asked to head to S Hospital.
I nodded and soon started driving.
An accident 7 years ago.
I was driving, feigning to be calm but my hand which grabbed the steering wheel trembled.
I tightened my hands and then glanced at Jang Yoonsung through the rearview mirror.
He seemed to ponder about something as his eyes gazed out of the window impassively, without any particular expression sketched on his face.
Seo Kijoon, who was in the middle of a call with someone, hung up and then asked curiously while tapping on his phone.
“You still don’t remember anything?”
Does not remember anything?
“How did you forget everything just like that? You were in the U.S.
and when you got back to your senses, you were back in Korea, does that even make sense?”
Seo Kijoon smirked as if he was dumbfounded.
I mulled over his words.
No matter how much I thought about it, I could only hear he had no memory of being in Korea.
I waited for Jang Yoonsung to provide an explanation but he only gave a curt, “Right” as a reply and then closed his eyes again.
“Oh, Hakyung-ssi, please check the navigation.”
Seo Kijoon called me urgently and whether it was because I was distracted and lost my way, the navigation started looking for a new path.
Jang Yoonsung glanced at the rear-view mirror again as if he was bothered by our conversation.
Jang Yoonsung yet again closed his eyes.
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