Life, Once Again! - Chapter 157
She had a very beautiful smile . Judging by what Maru called her earlier, her name was probably Miso . The woman walked over to them as she looked around the room . Her eyes fell on the teddy bear and she smiled .
"So Soojin's been here?"
"Yes, I feel like a little girl," Maru responded as he tapped at the teddy bear's head .
Miso's eyes turned to look at Suyeon, who was still sitting on the bed .
"Eh? Ms . Suyeon?"
"Long time no see, Ms . Miso . "
"It hasn't been that long . I heard your voice through the phone several times already . "
"But it's been six years in reality, hasn't it?"
"That's right . How odd . People in this industry tend to meet often too . "
"It really is odd . We haven't even tried to avoid each other either . "
"Would you like to go for a drink, since it's been so long?"
"No, I have work . "
"Ah, I see . How about you leave, then?"
"No thank you . Plus, investing time into Maru doesn't feel so bad . "
Suyeon smiled at Maru after finishing her sentence, she wasn't a fan of Suyeon's movements for some reason . Miso wasn’t particularly friendly towards this woman either .
“You must know Maru,” Miso asked Suyeon as she handed over a juicebox .
She received the juice box awkwardly as Miso finally turned to greet her .
“Hello . ”
“Ah, hello . ”
“Mind if I sit there?”
Miso was pointing at the chair next to her . She nodded . Miso took her seat and crossed her legs . She kept glancing at Miso from the side, the woman had really thin legs .
“I don’t know him that well, honestly . Hopefully it doesn’t stay that way, though,” Suyeon finally responded .
“I heard it’s pretty rude to visit strangers in hospitals . ”
“Really? I disagree . ”
They went straight back to arguing again . What was up with all of these visitors? None of them were normal so far .
“Big sis . ”
Bada was pulling at her clothes, the girl seemed to want to go outside for a moment . She slid out of her seat and got a little further away . Even now, Miso and Suyeon were still bickering with each other . Maru watched them for a little while before getting back to reading his book . Maru was flipping through his pages with a yawn . The two women continued arguing with each other, completely disregarding him . Just what was happening?
“These two don’t like each other, do they?” Bada whispered .
It really wouldn’t have mattered if the girl raised her voice though . The two women were talking so intensely that they didn’t look like they could hear anything .
“I think so . ”
“What the heck does my brother do outside? Why are there so many adults visiting him?”
“I’m wondering the same thing . ”
Bada looked at the bed with a confused expression, She turned to look as well . Maru let out a sigh as he closed the book in his hands . Its hardcovers closed with a snap, the two women finally closed their mouths .
“Thank you for coming . But any more of this and I’m really going to get a headache . If you two have something to talk about, I recommend the cafe next to the hospital . Also, instructor . ”
“Did we pass?”
“Ah, right . That’s what I wanted to talk about . ”
Miso made a ‘v’ with her hands .
“Passed with flying colors . The nationals are next week . We’re representing the Gyeonggi province with Myunghwa High . ”
“I expected as much . You told the kids to not text me about this, didn’t you?”
“Of course . Such good news shouldn’t be delivered by text . ”
“No wonder no one responded . ”
Maru turned to look at Suyeon this time .
“Thank you for coming . But I am a little bit disturbed by your presence, if I’m being honest . We’re practically strangers, Ms . Suyeon . ”
“Call me big sist . . . ”
“We can think about honorifics later down the line . But if you have nothing special to say, I’d appreciate it if you could leave . Things would probably get loud again if the two of you stay here and it’s not like I can kick out my own instructor . ”
“You’re surprisingly cold, seeing how you just draw a line . ”
Suyeon leaned forward to Maru . Looking at that, she frowned from across the room . The woman was clearly taunting Maru . She retracted her previous thoughts about the woman, this Suyeon has bad news written all over .
“I won’t be able to see you off . My leg’s a little bit damaged, as you can see . ”
Maru spoke as he scratched his eyebrows . Suyeon pouted, seemingly having expected a different answer . She ended up shrugging in defeat .
“Please be a little bit more friendly if you can next time . I want to be on good terms with you if possible . ”
“Of course, if I get the chance . ”
“If you don’t?”
“Well, life will go on regardless . Can you please leave now?”
Suyeon’s eyes widened . Maru’s voice was calm and relaxed, but he had strength behind his words . The woman’s lips straightened, and her eyes were frigid for the briefest moment . A smile returned pretty much immediately, but she definitely caught it . This was a scary person, she just knew it .
“You’re too much . I even took out time on my schedule to come to visit you . ”
As Suyeon raised her hand to towards Maru’s face, he grabbed her wrist firmly from the air .
“ . . . That’s cute . ”
“There’s no way such a big dude like me would be cute . ”
“You seemed like such a quiet kid the last time I saw you . Who would’ve thought you’d be so feisty? So that Maru I saw on stage wasn’t anything exaggerated after all . ”
Suyeon retracted her hand with a slight pout, she buttoned up her jacket and picked up her bag .
“I’ll see you next time, Maru . ”
“Please take care, Ms . Kim Suyeon . ”
“Wow, cold until the very end . ”
Suyeon got up as she flipped her hair back . She watched the woman step out of the room, catching a glimpse of the woman’s face before her figure disappeared entirely .
‘A wild dog . ’
That was the only impression she could get from it .
“I feel sorry for no reason,” Miso said as she licked her lips nervously .
“Seriously . Did you two really have a reason to start fighting in front of a patient? I thought my wounds were going to explode again . ”
“Hey, it wasn’t that bad . ”
The atmosphere of the room loosened up again .
“Oh my, I forgot to even introduce myself . I’m the instructor for the acting club he’s in . ”
Miso put a hand over Maru’s head and shook it . This time, unlike what he did to Suyeon, Maru let her do it . Looking at that made her realize that Maru was actually very picky when it came to people, that made her feel a little relieved . The boy always loved to tease her . That was a good sign, wasn’t it?
“I’m his sister . ”
“Ahh, Maru had a younger sister, huh? How’s he like at home? He’s a total meanie that says whatever he wants, isn’t he?”
“That’s right . He has matured recently though . ”
“Is that so?”
The two of them shared a hearty laugh, she let out a small giggle as well . Miso looked towards her .
“You’re a sister as well?”
“No, a friend . ”
Bada butted right in .
“She’s his girlfriend . ”
“Oh my god . ”
Miso put Maru under a headlock and shook him . The boy could only manage to squeeze out an “I’m a patient” . She smiled, feeling her cheeks heat up a little . She was embarrassed, but it also felt good hearing that from Bada .
“Were you surprised to hear that he got hurt?”
“Yes . ”
“Was he honest with you?”
“No, he had the gall to tell me he was okay at first . ”
“I knew it . This kid worries way too much about everything . Especially about other people . Well, I guess that’s what makes him so likeable . ”
Miso seemed to know Maru very well . Then again, she was his instructor . Maru managed to get out of the headlock and fixed up his hair before talking again .
“So we both managed to go to the nationals . ”
“Looks like it,” she nodded .
“Eh? What do you mean?”
Miso blinked in confusion . Ah, she didn’t explain, did she?
“I’m from Myunghwa High’s acting club . ”
“Yes . ”
“Mm, so a competitor?”
“Y-yes, pretty much . ”
Miso narrowed her eyes, the woman’s gaze felt hot and pressuring . It was kind of becoming a little too much, actually .
“Aren’t you going to celebrate?”
Maru took Miso’s attention away just at the right time . The woman sighed lightly in response .
“I was hoping to leave when the kids get here . ”
“When the kids get here?”
Right then, the hallway outside started getting very loud .
“Is it here?”
“I think so . ”
The door opened . Yoonjung was the first to step in with a big smile, the other club members followed in behind her .
“Maru, are you okay?”
“Seriously, you . . . ”
She stepped aside to look at the club members . They were all people who worked alongside Maru to create such an amazing play . Being all people from the same club, they seemed to be good friends with Maru . Well, all except two of them, by the looks of it . One of them was the tall boy . She recognized him in an instant .
‘The boy who was good at acting . ’
She could remember the boy’s acting as clear as day . He had quite the charisma on the stage, so it was hard to forget him . Next to him was a shorter girl . She looked rather cute, but also incredibly nervous for some reason as well . Her eyes went to extraordinary lengths to avoid Maru .
It was odd .
She started staring at the short girl without realizing it . Their eyes met for an instance and the girl paled like she just saw a ghost . She turned away . Was the girl sick? Or did the girl have bad memories of the hospital? Ah well, at least she came to see Maru .
“Was the cause of the fire discovered, by the way?” Maru asked Miso .
Miso’s smiling face stiffened .
“We found a tube of glue next to the burnt costumes . They’re not something we use . We only used silicon, to begin with . ”
“That means . . . ”
“We don’t have anything solid yet, but the fire might’ve been intentional . ”
“I see . ”
Maru looked towards her as soon as he got that far .
“I’ll leave for a bit,” she said as she turned .
Maru stopped her .
“No, we shouldn’t talk about this here anyway . ”
Miso joined in with him .
“Yes, you should stay with Maru . We need to leave soon . I’ll give you a call once this all gets sorted, Maru . ”
Miso left first after telling Maru to get better . One by one, the club members promised to come again before walking out .
“Who’s that, by the way?” A boy sucking on candy asked .
He was being quiet about it, but she heard him regardless .
“Girlfriend . ”
“ . . . What?”
“Dojin, can I just be alone with her for a bit?”
The boy exited the room visibly dejected when Maru waved him out . The room was quiet once more .
“Phew, finally . Bada, can you buy me some kimbap outside?”
“Mm, sure . I’ll be out for a few minutes . ”
Bada went outside with a grin .
“Finally, just us two . ”
Maru was saying something so embarrassing so calmly . She smiled lightly as she took a seat .
“Aren’t you popular, Mr . Maru . ”
“You just realized?”
“My goodness . ”
“You’re a lucky girl, did you know that?”
“You . . . ”
“Kidding . I’m the lucky one here . ”
“ . . . . . . ”
Maru extended his hand towards her, she grabbed it .
“I’m sorry for getting hurt . For making you relive those memories . ”
Just how much of her mind did he read? She could only smile defeatedly, she couldn’t get angry like this .
“ . . . Don’t get hurt from now on . Don’t lie, either . ”
“Okay . ”
“If you’re going to get hurt, ask for permission first . ”
“Okay . ”
“You’re just saying okay to everything . ”
As she looked at Maru with a smile, his face started inching closer to hers . His lips pecked away at hers quickly, she blinked in confusion for a second before pushing him away .
Maru pointed at his cast with a grin when she tried to push him harder .
“I’m a patient, go easy on me . ”
This guy… Well, she didn’t… hate it .
“Ohh . ”
A sound came from outside the room, she turned around in surprise . Bada was looking at the two of them with a smile .
“You’re a brave one, aren’t you, sis?”
Hah… Was everyone in Maru’s family like this?