“<<Don’t try to stop me, Miya-ssi! How can those people just walk by?>>”
“<<The desire to travel to-and-fro without receiving a boot to the chest is quite universal, Hyejin-ah.>>”
She had filmed a commercial for a bakery chain last week. The manicure still looked fresh, her grasp more delicate than usual as she lifted the cup to her lips.
It wasn’t her first choice, opting for a window seat or getting lunch at the hip, downtown café currently sheltering them, but Hyejin had insisted on both fronts with equal vigor. Miyane, for the life of her, could not be bothered questioning her reasons. Likely something about fresh air, or keeping up with the city, or taking in the view. Never mind that the view was the same as it ever was in Tenoroshi, with today’s climate providing an ambient bleakness to the whole damn thing.
Not in here though. Soundproofed windows, gentle heating, the atmosphere of a place where everyone who was anyone knew they had to visit at some point. It blanketed their senses. The café’s other patrons conversed onwards, oblivious to the incident taking place outside. Too important for a faceless grin in the crowd.
“<<Did you visit Gangnam often back home?>>” Miyane asked lightly, the conversation still proceeding in Hyejin’s native language. The restrained smile on her lips corrected itself when Hyejin reached for her phone. “<<What are you doing?>>”
“<<Contacting the police.>>”
“<<Don’t do that,>>” the idol frowned.
“<<But someone needs to do something. You’ve already finished your coffee anyway.>>”
“<<Yes. Because I drank it in peace. Peacefully.>>” Fourteen years of media conditioning enunciated the statement. “<<I might have enjoyed the quiet more than I did the coffee itself.>>”
Hyejin caught on. Finally. “<<Right. Low profile.>>”
For god's sake.
“<<—no one has to know you’re here.>>”
“<<No MiA. Just a representative of TS Entertainment. The company has had enough run-ins with the authorities for the current century.>>”
Hyejin pouted some more. Rummaging for more pleas, likely.
“<<He’s getting hurt.>>”
“<<I can see that.>>”
“<<Why are you so against something being done?>>”
“<<Because it doesn’t ma—>>”
She stopped herself just in time. That was close.
Hyejin’s undyed brows furrowed together. “<<Doesn’t what?>>”
Because it doesn’t matter. Tenoroshi was a city that trundled relentlessly, always forward. Permanence was a privilege few could acquire. It wasn’t cruel, it was just a fact of life. Hell, she quietly admired it. An entropic devouring of the masses. The man could get peacefully assaulted for the same reason a girl that had once dominated the worldwide charts could sit in a café undisturbed. Tenoroshi was her destiny.
A suitable resting place for a fallen idol.
“<<Actually. Do whatever you want,>>” Miyane shrugged. Her glasses case clacked open, pulled from her LV handbag, and she adjusted the sunglasses on her face.
“<<Yes. Call them, then we’re leaving.>>”
The manager nodded rapidly, beaming. “<<I knew you cared.>>”
Miyane waited without reply, giving the café a cursory glance in preparation of exit. It was easier this way. No sulking to deal with later that night. She’d probably saved a bottle or two of soju as well, in the long run.
The call completed in little time. She practically leapt out of her seat.
“<<Your Japanese has improved,>>” Miyane remarked, leading them both to the door as she did.
“<<Ooh, for reals?>>”
“<<Indeed. You have that overseas boyfriend in the bag.>>”