4. Breaking down
Things only seemed to get worse. Woojin had noticed the scars, and he started treating her even worse than before. Sometimes even freezing her out, not talking or looking at her for days.
She hadn’t seen anything to Kwangmin either. Even though he had texted and called her several times. She just couldn’t face him. She couldn’t let him get dragged into this too.
Every day she would get up, go to work, get home, prepare dinner, let Woojin abuse her over and over again, until he was bored of her, and then she would sleep. And the next day everything would repeat itself. It was like she lost the will to fight against it. Like she couldn’t fight against it anymore. She was empty.
Often she would think of Kwangmin, and she started missing him until the pain was too much. Then she would cut again, to get the feeling away. She couldn’t face it. She wasn’t strong enough.
Every night she had nightmares.
She stared down at her wrists, open cuts all the way up to her elbow. Kwangmin was looking at her with disgust. “You’re gross. Why would I ever want anything to do with the likes of you? You don’t deserve me. You don’t deserve anything. You worthless, pathetic excuse of a human.” He grabbed her shoulders, pushed her backwards until she reached Woojin. He would hold her tight, while Kwangmin would reach into her chest, rip out her heart and she would wake up, covered in sweat and heavily panting and crying. Woojin never noticed. Or maybe he did and just chose not to do anything about it. It didn’t really matter to her anyway.
One cold December night she woke up after having the same nightmare for the millionth time. She looked around to find that Woojin wasn’t home. After sitting and staring into the wall for what seemed like hours. She got up. She realised that she couldn’t do this anymore. She couldn’t stay with Woojin. She had to get away. She didn’t know where to, and she didn’t care. She pulled on a warm sweater over her pajamas and put on some boots and went outside.
She quickly began to freeze, so she started running down the street to keep warm. It was snowing, and there were no people outside. She ran and ran, not noticing her surroundings until she couldn’t run anymore. She fell to her knees and tried to calm her heavy breathing. After she had herself a bit more under control, she took a look around, only to realise she was in front of Kwangmin’s house.
She started crying. No, no, this isn’t right! Why did I run here? She had promised herself to push Kwangmin away. Not getting him involved in this mess. She had to at least do that for him. She tried to get up, but found herself unable to do so. She panicked. Her legs shook so heavily that she couldn’t control them. She started crying harder and tried to pull herself up, but every time she got up, she fell down again. Suddenly she heard a voice yell “Minjungie-ah!” Two strong hands grabbed her and pulled her up, lifting her gently off the ground. She looked up into Kwangmin’s worried eyes and forgot everything around her. She fixated on his eyes. His beautiful brown eyes. She saw a tear forming in the corner of his eye and she tried to lift her hand to brush it away. But she didn’t have the strength to do so. She let out a frustrated whimper. “Hyung” she said with a hoarse voice full of emotion and started smiling. And then her mind went blank.