📢Try To Re-load or Re Log-in to Show Loves

    Loves Error

    Deep Pivot Episode 38

    Ji Seo-joon’s life is a waiting period for death. Even if he went berserk and shattered into pieces, he wouldn’t find much regret in such a life.

    ‘I found the video. I’ll delete it now. Wow, it has quite a lot of views. The last comment is from four years ago.’

    Resting his arm on the window ledge of the passenger seat, Seo-joon gazed at the familiar passing scenery, lost in thought. Just watching that short video brought back memories he thought he had forgotten, flooding in like a wave.

    He realized he hadn’t yet moved on from the past. Or perhaps, he hadn’t even taken a single step away from that time.

    At one point, Seo-joon desperately struggled to alleviate his guilt, but his body, being a no-named Esper, didn’t allow even the luxury of letting go.

    Dying was too difficult, and living felt like hell, but during that time, Hee-min and Cheong-oh were his remaining support pillars. Cheong-oh constantly pestered him, while Hee-min took care of him like a parent.

    He barely survived countless crises. Liquid food was developed around that time to aid Espers who couldn’t properly eat. Seo-joon hadn’t been able to put any food in his mouth before that.

    Some days, he completely forgot about Min Seon-wook, and other days, he felt like he had become Min Seon-wook himself.

    The only moment of peace he found was in Hee-min’s lab, where he could inject himself with a lethal dose of tranquilizers and lie there for a few hours, unconscious, as if dead.

    After hundreds of attempts, Seo-joon realized that all those efforts hadn’t brought him the death he craved but instead had only been a burden on those around him. He gave up on death.

    After giving up everything, what remained was—

    “We’re here, Seo-joon.”

    His ongoing life. There’s nothing else to do. If he couldn’t die at will, he’d just have to wait until death finally came.

    “Hey, look at Jang Song-hee’s handiwork. She wrecked the side mirror.”

    The car slowly rolled to a stop. Seo-joon, seeing they’d arrived at his apartment complex, turned his head. Cheong-oh was outside, inspecting the scratched side mirror through the driver’s side window.

    “I’ll be off, Team Leader Jin. Thanks for the ride.”

    “Sure.”

    Getting out of the car, Seo-joon waved at the unperturbed Cheong-oh.

    He wondered how Cheong-oh would react if he found out that Seo-joon had arranged a matching test between Cha Yeon-woo and Team Leader Kang Mi-yeon today. He would likely smash the side mirror that Jang Song-hee had scratched and throw a fit.

    Though Seo-joon did what he had to do, he knew it wasn’t entirely fair to Cha Yeon-woo. Jin Cheong-oh had complained before about Kang Mi-yeon being impolite when receiving guiding, and that thought lingered uncomfortably in Seo-joon’s mind.

    After watching those old videos at the security center, though, he felt confident he’d made the right choice. Any Esper would be better than him, after all.

    …He wondered if the matching test had gone smoothly.

    A bit of curiosity arose. Had he been trembling and nervous like before? Kang Mi-yeon wouldn’t tolerate such behavior since she was different from Seo-joon. Surely he hadn’t had another nosebleed?

    Or perhaps he had surprisingly handled it well. Not just the SAU team members, but Seo-joon himself had started to see Cha Yeon-woo differently after the guiding session at the previous site.

    The elevator doors opened, and Seo-joon walked down the familiar hallway to his apartment, his face suddenly hardening. He noticed a figure sitting in front of his door.

    Even from a distance, he recognized the curly white hair. It was Cha Yeon-woo, who sat motionless on the cold marble floor, only turning his head at the sound of Seo-joon’s footsteps.

    “…Cha Yeon-woo?”

    Surprise quickly shifted to confusion. Seo-joon checked his watch. It was nearly midnight, as he had spent considerable time searching for and deleting the video.

    “Hello, Lieutenant.”

    Yeon-woo stood up and greeted him. In his bewilderment, Seo-joon couldn’t read Yeon-woo’s expression. It seemed normal yet different.

    “What are you doing here at this hour?”

    Seo-joon quickly approached. Seeing Yeon-woo still in his summer uniform made him uneasy, as the weather had gotten chilly in the mornings and evenings.

    Yeon-woo met his gaze and spoke.

    “I didn’t do the matching test with her.”

    “That’s your decision to make.”

    Seo-joon found himself at a loss for words.

    “You didn’t have to tell me.”

    “I just wanted to let you know.”

    He frowned, letting out a hollow chuckle.

    “You waited here this whole time just to tell me that?”

    “Yes. I wanted to tell you in person.”

    “What about your phone? Why didn’t you just call?”

    “You wouldn’t have met with me then.”

    Seo-joon imagined what he would have done if Yeon-woo had called.

    If Cha Yeon-woo suddenly wanted to talk to him, Seo-joon would have called right back to ask what it was or told him to just send a message if it wasn’t important. By then, he would have already known Yeon-woo hadn’t done the matching test with Kang Mi-yeon.

    “…I should get going.”

    Yeon-woo bowed and turned away, as if his purpose was fulfilled. Was he really sane? Did he seriously wait here just to say that?

    “Yeon-woo.”

    Seo-joon instinctively grabbed his arm.

    “This is ridiculous. You could’ve just left me a message.”

    “It wasn’t trivial to me.”

    “Pardon?”

    “…It was important enough that I wanted to tell you in person.”

    Seo-joon finally looked directly at Yeon-woo’s face. As soon as he met Yeon-woo’s eyes, he felt deeply uncomfortable. Yeon-woo hesitated, his lips quivering before he spoke nervously.

    “I…”

    His heartbeat started to quicken.

    “I don’t want to guide anyone else.”

    Seo-joon was left speechless, unable to utter a word. He looked at Yeon-woo, stunned, and couldn’t hide his bewilderment as Yeon-woo continued.

    “I sincerely hope you will hire me as your dedicated guide, Lieutenant.”

    Seo-joon’s mouth fell open helplessly. Why did he say it with that expression? It almost seemed like a love confession. Trying to restart his stalled thoughts, Seo-joon finally spoke after a few seconds.

    “…Come inside.”

    ✽✽✽

    The hand he held was cold, hinting at the hours Yeon-woo must have spent sitting there.

    After seating him on the sofa, Seo-joon brought a cup of warm green tea and offered it.

    “Thank you.”

    Yeon-woo took the cup in both hands and looked at Seo-joon, who instinctively avoided his gaze, turning away as he sat beside him.

    “…”

    Seconds, or perhaps minutes, of silence passed. There was enough space between them for another person to sit.

    “You were probably surprised because of me.”

    It was Yeon-woo who broke the silence first.

    “Sorry for coming here without your permission…”

    Is that really the issue? Or maybe it is? Seo-joon couldn’t quite put his finger on what was bothering him. He had so many things he wanted to say but couldn’t figure out where to start.

    “I was surprised, it’s true. But there’s no need to apologize.”

    Seo-joon spoke as though he was carefully unraveling a tangled thread, but like untangling any knot, one answer didn’t lead smoothly to another.

    Honestly, I don’t want to hire you as my dedicated guide anymore. I feel uncomfortable around you, Yeon-woo. Frankly, I find it burdensome. Why are you so desperate to become my guide? You’re a Grade A Esper. Just look at today. Team Leader Kang Mi-yeon could be a better opportunity for you. It doesn’t have to be me.

    Despite these tangled thoughts, he couldn’t bring himself to say most of them aloud.

    That was because the Cha Yeon-woo he’d seen at the front door earlier was too desperate, too pitiable, and uncomfortably tugged at his heart.

    He thought back to his first interview with Yeon-woo, the test videos Hee-min had sent him, the Hyoseok-dong quarantine site, their conversations, and the recent incident at the Yeonseon MyPark Mall. They all played like a vivid panorama.

    He vividly recalled their shared glances, the touch of their fingertips, and even Yeon-woo’s expression in the recent guiding video.

    Seo-joon, trying to sort out his tangled emotions, finally reached a conclusion.

    “…Yeon-woo.”

    Yes, at the core of all this confusion was this very question.

    “Have we met before? Before our match?”


    This content is protected.