The view of her back tinged pale under the bright light; her atmosphere was always amazingly quiet regardless of the fuss around her.
“Please don’t worry. Yoon Jung In and Eun Jiho are close at school.”
Kim Hye Hill was carefully explaining the situation to Yoon Jung In’s father. Listening to her story, Yoon Jung In’s father blinked his eyes in perplexity then responded to her.
“Really? The name Eun Jiho never came out of that talkative boy’s mouth…”
“Oh, it’s because they got close quite recently, haha.”
I had no idea where he suddenly came out from, but Kim Hye Woo intervened in the two by saying so.
Watching the three sharing conversations, it looked as though they had known each other for quite a while ago. The two families seemed to have some connection for, at least, a couple of years just like Ban Yeo Ryung and my family.
Rambling those thoughts in mind, the Kim twins, who just let Yoon Jung In’s father go, turned around to look at each other and mumbled.
“Well, Yoon Jung In gets along with others within 5 minutes, so we didn’t say anything false.”
“Since they left, they will soon show up as best friends.”
Kim Hye Woo replied after Kim Hye Hill’s remark. The twins then looked this way at the same time.
Looking at those calm and clean faces that never lost their lights anywhere, a warm smile hovered around my lips by itself. As I stared at them in silence while blinking my eyes, they called me first.
“How were you?”
Their words came one after another like a chain as if sharing a thought. Only then did I feel my face blushing.
Kim Hye Hill was wearing a less saturated, tranquil-looking purple dress, whereas Kim Hye Woo a blue jacket on top and cotton pants on the bottom. Despite their quiet and formal looks, the surreal atmosphere they always had around them felt even deeper.
Well, even though they were sitting in the classroom with school uniforms on, the twins still looked quite extraordinary as to appear imaginary.
Looking at the two alternately with awe, I suddenly gathered back my senses and bent my steps toward them. Approaching them quickly without stopping, I shouted their names.
“Hye Hill! Kim Hye Woo!”
Blinking their eyes for a moment as a response to my reaction, their faces soon brightened simultaneously. When I outstretched my arms to embrace her neck, Kim Hye Hill answered back while hugging me too.
“Such an impressive reaction than I expected.”
“Yeah, it looks like you’ve met a Messiah. Was this place too harsh for you?”
Uttering those words, Kim Hye Woo also stretched out his hand and patted me on the back.
* * *
Since the twins, who always attracted attention at school as well as in this place, and the two boys, Yoon Jung In and Eun Jiho, already had grabbed the crowd’s eyes, we moved to the corner as soon as the boys left. Standing close to the wall with a big picture hanging above, I, at last, caught my breath.
I asked, “After Yoon Jung In, now it’s you guys… What’s going on? Why are you all here?”
The Kim twins then secretly exchanged eye contact as they always did. They weren’t trying to hide something; instead, they seemed to not know what to answer back as they heard a too obvious question.
Kim Hye Hill then replied, “Hmm, well, that’s because our mother and father came here?”
Kim Hye Woo, beside her, also added a response after her words.
“And they told us we must go together?”
What the heck were they talking about? They were usually great in explaining things, but why not right now? Blinking my eyes, I tossed a question.
“Didn’t you say that they were running a small factory…?”
Of course, I didn’t have the right to ask such a thing to them as if taking a census; however, don’t we naturally get to learn about what each of our parents does for their jobs as we become close friends?
Looking at each other for a second after my question, Kim Hye Hill slowly opened her mouth.
“Yes… about 355,832 square feet…”
Is 355,832 square feet factory considered as a small business? How come? Why?
Kim Hye Woo then responded to me who was throwing an inexpressibly mixed glance at them.
“Um, they just have a few.”
Not even just one, but a few?
I looked back and forth between them with my eyes out of focus. The Kim twins exchanged eye contact again then called my name, ‘Donnie? Excuse me?’ but I couldn’t answer back. Raising my hand to quietly cover my face, I just said to myself.
Um, yeah, right. I forgot for a moment that this was taking place inside a web novel.
With a nod, I slowly put my hands down from my face and thought, ‘It’s all right. There are usually many chaebol successors like the stars in the night sky!’
Then I shoved my face into my palms again.
“How can that be possible…”
Once again, a deep sigh slipped out of my mouth. The Kim twins, who looked puzzled while exchanging eye contact with each other, soon patted me on the back.
It was after a few minutes that I finally calmed down. With a pale face, I gulped a glass of water that they handed out to me, then fetched a sigh inwardly.
Honestly, I was able to accept these circumstances this fast since I had adjusted myself to this world of web novel; however, how could every kid I encountered every day turned out to be all heirs and heiresses of super-wealthy families? Isn’t this too fictional?
This is fiction though…
The Kim twins, next to me, explained briefly about how Yoon Jung In was supposed to come here.
“I heard his family owns a grocery store?”
Kim Hye Hill, who fell into thought for a second after my question, responded serenely as always.
‘Yeah, it is a grocery store, it is but…’
I almost spat out the water I was drinking.
Looking at the side, I flung a question.
“K-mart, you mean the huge hypermarket chain in every neighborhood?”
Standing next to Kim Hye Hill, who was nodding her head, Kim Hye Woo continued.
“His father who just stopped by would be the CEO of K-mart’s Korean branch.”
Yeah… Staying still for quite a while, I nodded my head awkwardly then realized one thing. Inside this novel, none of the characters were run-of-the-mill.
I mean, the Kim twins and Yoon Jung In weren’t just normal kids in the first place as they were called the Four Heavenly Kings of Sukbong Middle School.
However, their characters felt relatively average compared to the Four Heavenly Kings of our middle school, so I totally forgot about that fact. It was just their run-of-the-mill hair colors that camouflaged their exceptional presences, but something unexpected would show up and reveal who they really were at some point like it did right now.
I nodded while thinking, ‘Let’s give up everything.’
Spending three years inside a novel, I finally realized the aesthetic of giving up. I displayed a satisfied look on my face while feeling the achievement I made. Meanwhile, Kim Hye Hill carefully touched my hair that was styled with hairpins.
She asked, “Anyway, what brought you here? You look not so good…”
“Yeah, I haven’t seen you in a long time, and you look under the weather. Hey, you were dragged here, weren’t you?”
After a moment of being in the state of liberation, Kim Hye Woo’s question soon lifted my head right away. As I asked back, ‘Huh?’ Kim Hye Woo tossed another question.
“Did Eun Jiho ask you a favor like he needs your help?”
Kim Hye Hill continued while nodding her head with a composed-looking face as usual.
“If he’s here with a girl, things will get a little less for sure. Other girls will hardly initiate a conversation with him.”
Wow, I emitted a whoop.
Kim Hye Hill and Kim Hye Woo would’ve not attended these events frequently as their personalities hardly went along with this kind of atmosphere. Still, they belonged to this class and society. I didn’t say anything about Eun Jiho as well as the reason why I was here; however, they had an insight into the overall situation.
Anyway, how should I respond?
I rolled my eyes. It was me who told Eun Jiho that I would give out a helping hand; therefore, strictly speaking, I wasn’t dragged to this place. It was correct that I was here to back him up.