Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Eight

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Rachel stayed at work late on Monday night in order to finish writing the draft of her sales report. It had been hard not to spend the entire day grinning or looking smug because they had sold out of every single jacket they had on hand. Almost of eighty-three percent of the shipment that was due on Wednesday had already been placed on backorder, too. She tried not to think about what sales could have been like if they hadn’t lost so much of the inventory in the fire; on the other hand, the messaging shift toward exclusivity had undoubtedly helped drive the purchasing frenzy. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Eight”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Seven

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Eun-sang stepped back from the edge, far enough that if Vice President Kwon looked up, he wouldn’t be able to see her. She checked her cell phone again, but there weren’t any missed calls or texts from Young-do.

Young-do hadn’t been very good at boundaries in high school—he had shown up at her work unannounced to force her to interact with him—but since they had reconnected over his father’s impending release from prison, he had been far more respectful. Enough that she trusted him not to send his vice president to her workplace without giving her some kind of warning. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Seven”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Six

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Even after his therapy session with Jae-sung, Hyo-shin found himself alternating between frustration, rage, and even fear. It made focusing on his schoolwork all but impossible. More than once he was tempted to throw something, but he had worked hard on killing that habit, and giving in to the urge in the library would have been something he would regret every time he walked inside.

Instead, Hyo-shin forced himself to sit as still as possible in the group study room he had scheduled before his afternoon classes. Moon Joon-young was due any minute. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Six”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Five

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Young-do thought the pictures of him and Ha-sun exiting the restaurant on Saturday night had turned out nicely. While the two of them had different opinions on what constituted gray—Rachel would have been far more explicit about what shade he should wear—they still looked like a couple. Most of that was due to Ha-sun, who had perfected a smile that looked genuine. If he hadn’t spent two hours over dinner carefully crafting their fake love story and plotting on how to approach Lee Sang-hyun, he may have believed she actually had feelings for him when she smiled like that.

He was much better at keeping a straight face. His true feelings tended to bleed through when he smiled. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Five”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Four

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So when are you going to come clean about Young-do?

Eun-sang grimaced at Chan-young’s text and almost wished she hadn’t started messaging him. But she had needed a distraction from all of the gossip articles about Young-do and Ha-sun (and the occasional nasty or dismissive comment about her), and Chan-young had been her first choice since it meant she could check up on Hyo-shin without actually pestering him.

According to Chan-young, Hyo-shin had spent most of Saturday morning catching up on homework, but then he left. Chan-young hadn’t pressed for information.

Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Four”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Three

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Hyo-shin was dragged out of sleep on Saturday morning by the alarm on his phone. He listened to it buzz for a couple minutes as he worked up the energy to get out of bed so he could take his morning medication. Missing yesterday’s dose hadn’t been the end of the world, but the large, pessimistic part of his brain was sometimes good at motivating him to do what was best in order to stave off future disaster. It didn’t always work—there were some days he simply couldn’t willpower his way into taking care of himself—but it was enough this morning to get him out of bed and into the small guest bathroom to start the day.

It was harder to resist getting back into sweatpants, but putting on sweatpants almost always ended up with him back in bed. If he had been in his old apartment, he might have done it, but in Chan-young’s home that felt too much like surrender, and that meant humiliation. He could leave his bedroom today, smile a little, talk for a few minutes, and pretend like their hospitality didn’t make him feel guilty.

Hyo-shin settled on a pair of clean jeans and a t-shirt before leaving his room. He followed the sounds of the television to the living room, where Chan-young sat cross-legged on the couch with a cup of coffee and a couple slices of toast. Chan-young was still in his pajamas and looking a bit bleary-eyed despite the coffee he was nursing. Hyo-shin was surprised to see him up already as he was pretty sure that Chan-young and Bo-na had had their own private after-party last night. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Three”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Two

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Young-do helped Ha-sun into her car and shut the door once she had pulled the skirt of her dress out of the way. He circled around to the other side, where the driver held the other door open for him, and slid inside. The tinted windows brought a measure of relief from the camera flashes, and Young-do barely waited to loosen his tie until after the driver pulled away from the curb.

Ha-sun kicked her shoes off again and retrieved her phone from the narrow seat between them. As she unlocked her phone, she told the driver, “Just take us home. I’ll have Se-young cancel our reservations.”

Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-Two”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-One

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Young-do and Ha-sun walked straight ahead, ignoring everyone who was gawking at them. Including, Eun-sang noted, herself and Tan. More accurately, Young-do never spared them a glance; Ha-sun wore a far more inviting expression, and when Eun-sang met her gaze, Ha-sun actually nodded.

It was just the faint dip of her head, but it was an unmistakable greeting. Eun-sang was too surprised to do anything other than continue staring, and then Young-do and Ha-sun were past them completely.

Eun-sang turned back to Tan; his eyes were wide. “Do you think Bo-na knows he’s here?”

“Shit.” Eun-sang set down her champagne flute and got to her feet. Tan looked ready to scramble after her, but she stopped him. “Stay here in case she comes by. I’ll try to find her.”

Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty-One”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty

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(Originally posted 7 Dec 2014 on tumblr)

Hyo-shin collapsed in the Yoon’s guest room and slept through the night, morning, and better part of Friday afternoon. When he woke up, he was disoriented, hungry, needed to use the bathroom, and had missed taking his morning medication. He had set alarms on his new phone to remind him to take them, but he had forgotten to turn his phone on before he fell asleep. It wasn’t too late for him to take his afternoon dose, so he downed that before heading into the bathroom.

He felt marginally more human after showering and shaving, though his reflection clearly showed just how exhausted he was. It was going to be difficult to put on a smiling face at the Mega Entertainment event tonight. At least he could console himself with the knowledge that after it was over, he could spend the rest of the weekend sleeping.

“I’m available this weekend, if you have the courage to text me with your new number.” Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Thirty”

Dividing Lines: Chapter Twenty-Nine

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(Originally posted 30 Nov 2014 on tumblr)

Even though they had known that the Hongs would file a suit against the station, YBS was still in an uproar over it. Eun-sang had been put in charge of organizing not only her own research and notes for the legal team but also the research and notes of every writer who had temporarily been conscripted to work on uncovering the scandal. Those writers all had their own programs and projects they needed to get back to, so PD Yoon had assigned Eun-sang to do the grunt work of weeding out duplicate information and double- and triple-checking everything against her timeline. VJ Han was similarly occupied with compiling corroborating media, while Writer Nam and Writer Ji were out of the office to hunt down more leads and dig up more material for the upcoming Sunday broadcast.

It was difficult to devote herself to her job completely when she had personal matters eating at her subconscious and distracting her. She hadn’t seen or heard from Hyo-shin since Monday night, and even Chan-young hadn’t heard from him since Tuesday morning, when Hyo-shin’s essentials had been moved into the guest room. At least he would be done with filming tonight—though Eun-sang was worried about what would happen when he no longer had A Daughter’s Revenge to keep him busy. She would be relieved when Tan was back in town and could help share the burden of worry. Continue reading “Dividing Lines: Chapter Twenty-Nine”