He watches as she scuttles hurriedly from that fancy-looking French restaurant, her hands secured inside the pocket of her light little black dress. She looks around cautiously before taking a pack of Seven Star from her pocket and quickly she puts one in between her lips, only to discover that she forgot to buy a lighter earlier. Her frustrated sigh catches his attention. Without a word, he approaches her and offers to light up her cigarette.
Up close, she smells incredible. A sweet, fresh mixture of pear and strawberry. Her lips are extra smooth, coated with lip gloss, creating a natural yet childish look to her overall look.
“Thanks,” she says after taking a long drag of cigarette.
He smiles quietly. “You’re not cold?” he asks politely. The rain has stopped thirty minutes ago, but it is still quite cold. He’s amazed to see her barely shivers under her light, tasteful dress. “The weather is ice cold.”
She smiles, just barely, a brief, flitting thing before coolly turning her eyes towards him. “Only at first,” she says. “After a while, you can barely feel anything.”
“Well, you must have come from a family of polar bear.”
She lifts her thin shoulder and takes another drag. “I can barely feel anything these days,” she continues. “Not even the slightest emotion. I guess our relationship has finally taken its toll on me.”
“I’m sorry,” he says sincerely.
She waves her hand dismissively. “Don’t be,” she says. “You’re not trapped in this relationship. So there’s nothing to be sorry about.”
“If you’re not happy, then why don’t you leave?”
“It’s not that easy,” she replies softly.
“Sure it is. You can always run away with me.”
She turns around, her eyes wide. But then she notices the grin he has been trying to suppress, and she laughs wholeheartedly.
“Why, pray tell, would you want to run away with someone you just met five minutes ago?” she asks, amused.
“Well, I’d rather regret the things that I have done than the things that I have not done,” he replies without taking his eyes away from her dark brown orbs.
“You’ve got a point there.” She smiles wistfully. Then, she crushes what is left from her cigarette with her killer heels. “Well, I better go back before someone calls the police. It was nice talking to you.”
“Laters,” he says, touching the tip of his hat, as if he somehow knows that this is not going to be their last encounter.
She laughs before turning her heels. Then, she bows slightly and whispers, “Laters.”
“Don’t worry, it’s only one. I’ve made some progress,” she says lightly as she returns back into her seat.
He smiles indulgently at her. “Well, I don’t mind. I’m just happy to see you again.”
She smiles back at him and pulls her chair in closer to the table. She leans her elbow on either side of her plate and smiles across at her husband. “Me too.”
“Why did you have to pretend you didn’t notice me out there?” he inquires, his brows furrow.
“Months could pass without me properly looking at you,” she tells him. “I know you all too well to be a good judge of your face-value handsomeness. To judge how well you were wearing your years, I have to pretend that you are somebody that I don’t already know.”
He goes a little red. He knows that she was doing one of her rare physical assessments of him earlier. Sometimes, it seems so hard to get through to her fast-spinning world he’s afraid she might forget him. But she always knows how to make up for it. Her unique way of telling him that she actually cares always adds a special spark into their relationship, and that’s one of the many rare qualities she possesses. One of the many things that makes him fall for her.
“I love you, Laut.”
“I love you too, Jeong Ji Hyun.”