"Shhhhhh!"I mumbled, opening the fridge and taking out a bottle of water.
"What's wrong?"he repeated, this time whispering.
I gulped down the water. "I'm having a terrible head ache..."
He smiled while putting in front of me a bowl with a strange looking content. "Drink this, hyung! G.O. said that you may have hangover so he made this soup for you. But seriously, hyung! You shouldn't drink that much!"
I nodded as I sipped. "Yuck~~!!!"I made faces as I tried to put up with the soup's taste. "YAH! Byung Hee! You should learn how to cook before making soup for hangover,"I mumbled, seeing him entering the kitchen with a towel wrapped around him. "And put some cloths on!"
"Shut up and eat!"he snapped back, taking a sip from a water bottle. "You're in no position to complain. By the way, do you have anything you want to do today?"
"'Coz manager hyung told us that today is free,"he shrugged.
I tought about it for a second. I should finish the lyrics..."I have to put down on my PC the lyrics I have and then sort them out. I think we'll have the lyric for the new album pretty soon."
"Really?!"exclaimed Mir, putting his managa book aside. "WOW, hyung! You really are fast!"he smiled.
I smiled, trying not to look to satisfied.
"What's for lunch, hyung?"he then asked G.O.
"I don't know,"the letter shrugged. "It's his time to cook,"he pointed towards Thunder.
I frowned. "YAH!"
They stopped on their traks. "What?"
"Weren't we talking here about me?"I pointed out.
They began laughing. "Hyung, you're so self-centred!"
"YAH! AM NOT!"I yelled as I ran after them around the dorm. "I really am not..."
I was copying down the new song's lyrics. "This one...hmmmm...I know! ' Scribble'!"I said to myself, inserting the title on the Word document. "I finally finished this one! Rain hyung would be so proud..."
I streached my body as I stood from my desk's chair. I looked around smiling. But then I remembered what Dongwoon told me just before falling asleep. I frowned as my eyes fell on the old diary. I sat on my bed with it in my hands. I opened it at a random page, just at the beginning of the textbook.
I told you before about Mi Rae, right? Well today, that monkey climbed up the red tree once again and fell down before I could help her. I panicked! I really really panicked as I saw her down on the hard ground. Thanks God she was alright! She twisted her wrist, but nothing more. Ajumma scolded her when we got home. And me too...I was sad. Yes, I cried. I went to my room and cried until I fell asleep. Eomma woked me up and I told her what happened. She then told me that it was not my fault, but that ajumma got scared. She told me that I, since I was a boy, I had to protect girls.
Yes, Mr. Diary, girls are made to be protected. So I will protect Mi Rae from now on! I will protect her till the end of time if that's necessary!
Under the blue post was glued a photo. Mi Rae was sticking her tongue out at the camera.
"Neh, Mi Rae, tell me where can I find you?"I whispered while touching the photo.
That's when something fell on the bed. It was a small, pink note.
"Search in the red tree's heart.
Mi Rae was here :)"
I stared at the note an turned it on the others side as well. But that was all.
"The red tree? 'Search in the red tree's heart'?"I mumbled.
As I realized what the note was trying to tell me, I jumped up and grabbed my car keys and jacket on my way out.
"Oh, Seung Ho hyung!"exclaimed Thunder. "Where are you going?"
"I need to...Anyang! Don't wait for me!"I rushed outside without tying my shoelaces.
"Wait, hyung! I'll come with you!"
I was only half aware of Thunder presence in the car. He was way to silent as I speeded up on the highway.
"HYUUUUNG!"he squealed as the indicator passed 190 km. "Please...drive carefully!"
"Thunder, do you want to come with me or not?"I mumbled as I tried to take off my jacket.
I saw him nodd. "The stop complaining! I NEED to arrive to Anyang!"
I glared at him.
"At least KEEP YOUR HANDS ON THE STEERING WHEEL!"
"Arasso, arasso. Wimpy kid,"I muttered under my breath.
We arrived in Anyang around 3 in the afternoon. I parked the car in front of my house and got off in a second.
"Thunder, you can wait inside if you want,"I said over my shoulder as I was already nearly running towards the hill. "I have something to do! It won't take long!"
"Wait, hyung! I wanna come too!"I heard him from behind, so I slowed down.
He quietly followed me up the hill.
"Wow!"he whispered as we arrived in front of the old tree.
I was too busy to look around it. "The heart of it...it should be in the centre, right?"I mumbled to myself.
"What are you looking for?"
"'The red tree's heart',"I replied, parapharasing Mi Rae.
I knew he was looking strangely at me, but I had to find it no matter what!
"Hyung, shouldn't you be looking for a hollow?"I hear Thunder's voice.
He was right! I remember Mi Rae told me about find one while she was climbing up the tree! I swallowed my saliva. So that meant I hat to...to climb up the tree?
"Are you going to climb it?"
"But you hate hights!"he threw me a worried look.
I nodded once again and wipped my sweating palms on my jeans. I had to climb up no matter what! No matter what!
"I'll do it for you,"sighed Thunder, unzipping his jacket.
"No. I will do it. I saw her doing it so many times that I feel like I did it myself at least once,"I said, still watching the tall tree. "I have to do it..."
I climed up trying my best not to fall or look down as soon as I saw myself up there.
"Hyyyyuuuuung! Do you think you'll be ok?"shouted Thunder.
"Yeah," mumbled, looking at him. Big mistake! Huuuuge mistake! I became dizzy as soon as I saw the ground so far from my feet.
I could feel my body go numb. And I knew I was going to fall down. But then I saw it. The hollow that Mi Rae mentioned to me...it was really there! Pulling up my body, I managed to stay up in the tree and I got closer to the hollow. It was quite small. But my hand could enter it really easy.
"Found you!"I giggled when I could feel a soft cloth under my fingers. It was a dark blue, velvet ribbon. I saw that ribbon so many times in Mi Rae's hair that it was impossible for me not to recogniz it. I sqeezed it gently and smiled to Thunder who was looking up with a worried look on his face. "I'll be down in a bit,"I shouted so that he could hear me.
"Are you ok?"he replied.
"Yes, I am,"I smiled, realizing that was no longer dizzy.
I sat on a thick branch and touched the tree's bark. "Thank you for protecting it for me till now,"I whispered, trying to convey all my feelings through that touch. "I'll do my best to find her, ok? I know you miss her just as much as I do. So wait a little more, neh?"
And with those final words I jumped off, landing in front of Thunder perfectly. "Let's go home!"I smiled.
"Young master, dinner is ready,"called us Mr. Kwon.
I smiled. "Thank you, ajusshi! What do we have?"
"Soup and steake,"he replied as he led the way to the kitchen. "And vegetables to go with the steake. I think you'll be driving so I won't bring you any wine to go with that."
"It's ok! I'm still a little hangover after last evening's BBQ,"I laughed. "Sit, Thunder!"
Mr. Kwon left us alone after showing me where everything was put.
"'Young master'?"asked Thunder, watching me as I was tasting the soup.
"Yes. It's an old habit of his. He used to be our gardener,"I explained.
"Yes. Something wrong with that?"my eyebrow shot up.
"N-no, but...hyung, I realize that I don't know that much about you. Or your past."
I looked at him. "I'll tell you. After eating, on our way back to Seoul, I'll tell you who I used to be."
And I did. I started to say out loud for the first time, the history of my life. Yes, I was kind of a rich kid, a piano genius, I lost my best friend and everything I used to love with her. I saw Shinhwa performing on TV and I decided to go to Seoul and become a singer. I left the piano behind and entered under Rain's label and ended up being the leader of what today's called MBlaq.
"So, can you please why we came here today?"
"To get this,"I said, taking out the blue ribbon.
He took it an annalyzed it carefully. "Hyung, there's something written on it,"he said after a while.
"Read it to me,"I harshly said, not taking my eyes off the road.
"Forgive an old heart before starting anew. Then as it to give you the last thing I touched. Then we'll be forever together."
I thought about it for a bit.
"What does it want to say with 'an old heart'?"asked Thunder, giving me back the ribbon.
Before my mind could find the answer, my heart spoke it out for me. "Dongwoon."