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Fragrance of Love

Chapter Text

It was a beautiful day. White, fluffy clouds drifted across the sky. The sun was shining brightly and a warm breeze was blowing. Perfect for dating and picnic. Go Hajin wearing a grey colored checked suit stood outside the building she had worked for around 3 years. She looked through her mobile contacts. Nothing. She didn't have friends or at least not anymore.

She used to be very popular before. Charming, vibrant and kind-hearted. She had lots of friends when she was attending high school. But all of that changed when she entered university. High tuition fees meant she had to take numerous part-time jobs. She hardly had time to rest let alone hanging out with her friends. She naturally grew apart from them. She tried to make new friends. And she did. But she couldn't maintain them. She was always studying and when she wasn't, she was working. She still made time for her friends whenever she could. However just because you're sincere does not necessarily mean that the other person would be sincere too. Her so-called friends saw her as a pushover, someone who is too nice to say no to any request even if it costs her gravely. The one time she stood up for herself, they accused her of being selfish and arrogant. She broke off with them. She didn't need such friends but she still missed having someone to talk to especially at a time like this. Her colleagues were friendly. She was not friends with them but she had good relation with them. But today she lost them too.

Hajin lifted her head to see the busy, bustling and crowded street before her. She could hear the incessant honking of the vehicles. Nobody's looking at anybody, too absorbed in their own lives. She didn't want to return to her empty house so she walked around aimlessly. Her legs brought her to a nearby lake. It was filled with laughter and happy faces. She felt envious in her heart. Her eyes fell on a homeless middle-aged man sleeping on the ground.

I guess I am not the most unfortunate person in this world. She sighed.

She looked up to the sunny sky, a stark contrast from her current mood. “You should have taken me with you.” A tear escaped from her left eye which she wiped away with a thumb.

As Go Hajin was the only child of her parents, she had been pampered all her life. Her each and every wish was fulfilled. It would not be wrong to say that she was spoilt to some extent. When her parents died on a horrendous car crash, some called her lucky to have managed to survive such terrible accident, some called her pitiful while some called her a witch who caused her parents to die for she was the one who had suggested that trip. Only after her family died, she had learned that her father had a huge loan under his name. The creditors confiscated almost everything. With the remaining money, she had decided to start anew. But it was easier said than done. That little money was not enough to pay for her rent, school fees and basic expenses. To cover them she had taken part time jobs on various cafes and convenience stores. Hajin was always a lazy student until she became an orphan. Then she had gotten this complex obsession of making her parents proud. She had sacrificed her sleep and vacations to achieve her goal. In the end she had successfully passed high school and university with flying colors. After her graduation she had landed a job in a well-known perfume company.

When Junwoo first confessed to her, she was perplexed. That was not the first time she had been confessed but that was the first time she had ever considered entering a relationship. Earlier she'd reject them simply because she didn't want any distraction from her studies. Junwoo was gentle, well-mannered and was in the same department as hers. She had thought she had achieved what she had wanted and could finally live a freer and happier life now. She let herself fall for him. She let her guard down around him. She trusted him. And for that she had to pay a huge price. Junwoo framed her for leaking their company's confidential documents and she was fired because of that. When she had asked him why, he had replied, “You are nice but you were in my way of promotion”. She had wanted to laugh at his reason. For that lousy reason he had ruined her years of hard work. Now no reputable company would want to hire her anymore.

Hajin closed her eyes and took a deep breath. “I haven't done anything wrong”, she reminded herself. “I need not have to suffer. I will overcome this. I can.”

As she was turning around to leave, she noticed a little boy reaching out over the water, and a moment later he fell in. Hajin's first impulse was to jump in and save him, but she tried to convince herself, “I am not in a position to help others. I am sure someone else saw him too.” But a glance around proved that nobody’s even noticed.

Frustrated, “Aish why me again?!”

She took off her shoes and ran for the water. After she pulled the boy to safety, she tried to get out of the water herself but instead she was dragged underwater by some unknown forces.

Please let me live. I don't want to die. She prayed earnestly.

The last thing she saw before losing consciousness was the thinning of the crescent as the moon covered the sun.

She was gone.