Later that evening Ji Won posted a note on my door telling me to meet him. It was 8 p.m. and I knocked the door to his room. “Come in,” said Ji Won. I entered his room, not knowing what he was going to say. “Follow me,” he ordered. He left the room and I followed him.
He took me to the beach that was near our hotel. Then he walked over to a spot where there were two rocks side by side. I caught my breath. This looks exactly like our spot in Hawaii, I thought. “Come here and sit next to me, Min Sung,” said Ji Won to me, patting the rock next to him. I sat down near him and closed my eyes as I breathed in the salty sea air.
Ji Won began to study Min Sung. ‘He looks like Mina in a way,’ he thought. ‘Could he be Mina in another form?’ Ji Won didn’t believe in reincarnation but Min Sung was too much like Mina for him. He wanted to see if somehow Min Sung was Mina so he had to test him. “Min Sung, you want to hear a story?”
“Sure,” said Min Sung eagerly.
Ji Won smiled as he told his story. “There once was this rich boy who came from a messed up family. He had no friends at all. Then one day he met this little girl who became his friend. She was really nice to him, unlike his family, so he began to adopt her as his dongsang.” Ji Won paused right there to see Min Sung’s reaction.
My smile faded when Ji Won began his story. He was talking about our life in Hawaii. Then I figured out he was testing me. The respirator, I thought. I must have drained it when I was using it so now he suspects me. I steadied myself and tried my best to give no reaction.
Ji Won stared at Min Sung, who appeared to have no reaction to the story. “Well what do you think?” Ji Won asked him. “That’s a cute story, hyung,” he said, shrugging his shoulders. Ji Won continued. “Do you know why he took extra care of his dongsang?” Min Sung shook his head no. “It’s because she has this heart problem and needed this respirator to breathe.” He took out the respirator from his pocket and showed it to Min Sung. Again no reaction.
“Poor girl,” said Min Sung.
“Yes, poor girl,” said Ji Won sadly. “She died a few years later.”
I looked at Ji Won sadly. I knew Ji Won felt bad because of my death but since I’m no one special to him, it wouldn’t matter if he knew the truth that Mina was still alive and with him right now. Then Ji Won took out a stone and handed me one. I rubbed the white marble stone for a while. “Throw it,” he told me. I shook my head no. To me it was like a present so I didn’t throw it but just kept it in my pocket. Ji Won threw his into the ocean. It skipped 3 times.
“Perfect,” he said.
“Why is it perfect?” I asked him.
This time I wished he would tell me the significance of the 3-skip. “When the stone skips 3 times, it means 3 words. I love you.” I looked at Ji Won in an overwhelming joy. Did Ji Won love me? He had thrown the rock and it skipped 3 times many times before. “So did the rich boy ever really loved his dongsang?” I asked Ji Won. Ji Won looked at me. “Of course he does. He has a lot of brotherly love for her.” “Oh,” I whispered softly. My heart began to ache.
As Ji Won continued staring at the ocean, I began to walk home with a heavy heart. Ji Won began to shake his head. ‘Mina’s dead already so why am I denying that I love her?’ he thought to himself as he stared out to the ocean. “Actually, Min Sung, the rich boy loved his dongsang the first day he met her but he’s such a weak person. He never could admit his feelings for her and just waited for her to say that she loves him first.”
Ji Won turned around and saw that Min Sung had left. ‘Oh well,’ he thought as he headed back to the hotel.
dream as if you'll live forever , live as if you'll die today ♥