I opened my eyes and quickly checked if I was injured, then I checked other members. Suddenly I realized we were under a blanket. Manager saved us.
“Hyung –!” I reached to him, but he already faced the ghost, but it disappeared.
We were silent for a moment.
“Is she doing it often?” manager asked. “Vanishing like that after making a mess?”
He made a face saying ‘why didn’t you tell me earlier’ but softened, when he realized we told him, but he didn’t believe us. He sighed and scratched his head, deep in thought.
“Hyung –” I began again, but felt something weird on the blanket. I looked at it and saw a scarlet stain. “Hyung, you –!”
“Huh?” He saw the stain and checked his body. There was a cut on his arm. “Ah, it’s nothing. Don’t worry.”
But I should be worried. He got hurt because of me! I jumped on my feet, frantically looking for the first aid kit. While searching the kitchen I dropped cereals, which scattered around the kitchen. Damn! Why my hands were trembling so much...
Then someone softly grabbed my hands. I lifted my head and saw Youjin. He smiled slightly and wiped my face. I didn’t even realize I was crying again. Members searched the kitchen instead of me and when Heejun found the first aid kit, we cleaned the glass from the sofa and sat on it with manager.
“I’m sorry,” manager said. I looked at him. He was talking to me. Inseong was bandaging his arm. “I should have believed you.”
“It’s okay...” I muttered. I calmed down a little, but my right hand was still shaking. Maybe because of being numb a few minutes ago. “I wouldn’t believe either, if I didn’t see it for myself.”
“And about the situation on the roof –”
“Don’t worry about it.” I smiled weakly. “I understand. Anyone would suspect I had those intentions.”
But manager was still angry at himself. And I was at myself, because everyone was getting hurt because of me. Heejun must have guessed my thought, because he suddenly hit my arm. I looked at him shocked. He hit me really hard, not jokingly as usual. And for the first time I saw him this angry. First Seungjun, now Heejun? What did I do?
“No one is blaming you,” Heejun said sharply. “So stop blaming yourself. We’re in it together, from the beginning till the end. Even if it wasn’t you, one of us would be cursed by her for sure. Now!” He grabbed my face, squeezing it. “Get up and join us thinking how to deal with it!”
He was right. He was damn right, but I still couldn’t control my feelings.
“I’m sorry!” I groaned and burst out crying again. “I-I’m so sorry!”
“Don’t be. We’re bros, right? Get used to it.”
Members hugged me tightly. When I was calm enough to think, I saw manager had teary eyes too. I smiled. Manager cleared his throat and said, “I have a feeling you’re doing something with it already.”
We told him about Creep. He was half glad, half angry at us. Well, we skipped the most dangerous parts (so mostly everything...), but Creep’s personality worried manager.
“I hope you won’t meet him again,” he said. “And if you do, ignore him. It’s better to look for another solution. I have something in mind and I’ll do it tomorrow.” He looked at my chest with anxiety. “You’re really feeling her presence?” I nodded. “So we’re safe for now?” I nodded again. “Even though I’ll sleep here for few days. Do you all agree?”
We all nodded gratefully.
For the first time since Hyeonju’s curse I slept all night without waking up and nightmares. Seeing that, members and manager must have let me sleep longer, because I woke up after noon. I sat and looked around. I was alone in my room. I rubbed my eyes, yawned, and went to the bathroom.
When I entered the kitchen to eat something, I almost tripped over Seungjun’s turtle pose.
“Whacha doin’?” I muttered. My tongue wasn’t functioning right yet.
Seungjun looked at me startled, as if I caught him doing something forbidden.
“Did you see?” he whispered.
“A little, fluffy, and cute thingy?”
“Aren’t you talking about your mascots?” I grumbled, opening the closet under the table to get cereals. “WHAT THE HECK!?”
Suddenly cereals burst into my face and something rather big jumped at me. Hearing my scream, everyone gathered in the kitchen in a moment.
“Seungjun-hyung!!” I outraged, fully awake.
“Found you!” Seungjun cried, ignoring me and hugging the ‘thingy’.
He brought a dog. Not some ‘little, fluffy, and cute’ puppy, but big Labrador with fair fur. Okay, it was kinda cute.
And fluffy too~
“It’s from a shelter for dogs, which my cousin’s friend owns,” manager said. “You wanted a pet for long time, so I think it’ll do well here for the time being.”
“It’s not ours?” Seungjun almost burst into tears.
“No. You don’t have time for dogs right now. It’ll stay here until we solve this ghost chaos. I’ve heard animals have more sensitive senses and they can detect abnormalities too. Maybe this will help against the ghost.”
“I’m not enough?” I muttered, but I was glad the dog was here. Maybe I’ll calm down faster.
“We’re not sure whether you always feel her presence,” manager stated.
“That was your plan you were talking about yesterday?”
“Not exactly. I have to go somewhere today, so you’ll go to the company without me. We’ll meet later.”
We brought Fairy with us (it was a female, by the way). The staff didn’t like that the dog will be at the workplace, but we insisted and said manager will explain everything later.
We started our daily schedule from dance practice, then vocal lessons, and after that we had Chinese and Japanese classes. Before the dinner we had some free time. We were lying on the floor, not sure what to do. After a few minutes Heejun and Inseong began to browse the Internet, Seungjun was watching some animation on his phone while eating snacks, and Youjin, as usual, was playing games. I took the camera, which was on the sofa and probably belonged to the staff. Well, I’ll return it after break, so they shouldn’t be mad.
I took pictures of members (trying to took only derp ones of Seungjun – just to have something on the bad days) and unknowingly I went out into the corridor. I documented all destroyed parts of the company and entered the room, where I haven’t been in yet. I looked around through the camera. This room was the least damaged. In the corners I saw easels with finished and just half-finished paintings. Wow, trainees of Youngster Unity were really talented...
I frowned and again looked at the camera’s screen, and then at the painting before me. The painting was representing a landscape with a single house and a swing. I wasn’t fully awake yet?
When I looked at the painting, there wasn’t any human form. But when I looked at it through the camera, there was a blurry figure on the swing. I frowned more and wiped the screen with sleeve.
The figure vanished.
“What the heck... ?” I grumbled puzzled.
I took a picture of the landscape. I checked it and didn’t find any human form at all. Maybe the camera was broken? I got ready to took another picture, when I saw something creepy. I lowered quickly the camera.
It wasn’t there. I swallowed hard and tried again. I froze. I wasn’t mistaken! I couldn’t see it with my own eyes, but there was a dark figure, sitting on the chair next to the painting, only seen through the camera. I took a picture and checked it, but it was clean. I carefully looked through the camera once more and saw the same figure. What was it doing?
Suddenly the figure’s hand moved and I panicked, accidentally switching off the camera. I looked around, breathing fast. There was no one here. I didn’t feel anything either.
I wanted to look again, to check if I really wasn’t wrong, and I raised the camera, ready to switch it on. But before I could do it, I saw similar figure on the screen, standing behind me.