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Joo Won 주원 [Upcoming Movie "Carter" 2021]


Calli

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So, I know I've been away from the action for a bit, but there has been a good reason for that: no sooner have I gotten my Christmas/winter break from school did I end up sick with a cold :mask: To be fair, though, I should have known it was coming: real life in the past month or so has been super-busy, which means the little adage I had Nae Il saying in one of my recent fics ("Carmen, Micaela, Don José") does hold true, at least in part:

 

Quote

“Eomeong used to tell me,” Nae Il says, leaning proudly back in her seat, “that when there are two people, and only one gets sick when there’s a bug floating around, then whoever that is, is the one who’s been under the most stress and, therefore, needs the most rest.”

 

“Ah….” I concede with a sigh, nodding in understanding. To be honest, I’m not entirely sure that that’s how this all works; but then again, who am I to argue with a mother about these things?

 

To be honest, I'm still somewhat out of sorts right now, but am on the mend, at least :thumbsup: 

 

But why am I saying all this? First of all, just to let you guys know that I still haven't given up on the idea of a proper Christmas Special yet. Obviously, the writing itself has been going more slowly than I'd anticipated, which means I might have to cut things short and really make this a cutesy, slice-of-life sort of fic, but I still want to do it - so wish me luck!

 

Secondly, and more directly JW-related, this got me comparing the characters he's played in my head again. The last time I did that here, it was about which of JW's characters would have or want to have a dog. *points above* But this time, because of my particular circumstances, the question I'm using is this: Which of JW's characters would I most trust to take care of me when I'm sick?

 

(Hey, I know I've said I'm not a big one for the fangirl fantasies, but that's just referring to JW himself, NOT his characters. His characters, as far as I'm concerned, are fair game.)

 

So with that in mind, here's what I've decided on:

 

No, I probably wouldn't trust him

Han Gil Ro (Because he's such a giant kid, he has a hard enough time taking care of himself, let alone others)

Gu Ma Jun (Growing up so spoiled and then becoming so bitter, I think it's unlikely he'd actually step in. Maybe the post-drama Ma Jun, though? I dunno - what do you think?)

 

Maybe/Hard to tell based on what I know

Lee Kang To (Have to give him points for effort, at least, but he's also got bigger things to worry about - and last I checked, I'm not Oh Mok Dan ;))

Gyun Woo (Again, because I haven't watched enough of "My Sassy Girl" to tell - but what little I have seen does look promising)

 

Yes, I definitely would trust him

Hwang Tae Hui (His bedside manner - where applicable - would need some work, but I can see from the way he treats his family and Baek Ja Eun that he's dependable, at least)

Kim Tae Hyun (Because he's Yong Pal - need I say more?)

Cha Yoo Jin (He's dependable, and knowledgeable - and even though he'll probably complain about it every step of the way, I'd know, just like Nae Il, that he does care underneath that gruff exterior)

Park Si On (Out of all of JW's characters, he'd probably be the most conscientious/reliable nurse/doctor to have around, but his habit of constantly checking up on his patients might get smothering after a while. Oh well, at least he means well. :))

 

By the way, this is purely what I personally think. Feel free to respond with your own ratings/rankings - especially if they're different from mine!

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And here it is: my Christmas Special 2019!

 

Sorry, guys, for being a bit late with this - that post-cold fog took me longer to come out from than anticipated :P But in my defence, it is still technically Christmas Day where I am (sometimes, crazy time zones do help).

 

Spoiler

Title: Tidings of Comfort and Joy

Drama: "Yong Pal"

Characters: Kim Tae Hyun, Han Yeo Jin, Kim So Hyun

Premise: It's time for Hanshin's annual Christmas party, and this is Kim Tae Hyun's first time taking part. However, while he is usually an outgoing and friendly person to begin with, he struggles to fit in with Han Yeo Jin's social circle. Right now, rather than a bunch of business magnates, he'd much rather be spending Christmas with close friends and family. Fortunately for him, Kim So Hyun's also been invited.

Warnings: Some Korean profanity (just once, but still worth the warning)

 

Note on names/titles: There are a few things I do here that might not be the norm in the "Yong Pal" fan-universe, so allow me a moment to clarify before you all get confused.

 

First of all: while Tae Hyun's post-marriage title is usually translated simply as "Sir" in the subtitled versions of the drama, I opted for the more old-fashioned-sounding "Master" instead. On the one hand, it's because I actually have no idea what his title translates to in English. On the other hand, I watched "Yong Pal" in Cantonese dub, where the title that's given to Tae Hyun is an archaic one used for a Prince Consort (i.e. the husband of a princess). While that could have been funny - imagine Tae Hyun being referred to as "Your Royal Highness" left, right, and centre :P - that's not really the most practical option out there. So I ultimately chose to go with "Master", because it's somewhat plausible, but is still old-fashioned/formal enough to be just a bit comical in the 21st century.

 

Secondly: I really wanted to refer to Tae Hyun's fellow resident friend (i.e. the one who calls him "Hyung!" all the time) by name, except that he never is in the drama. English-language sites refer to him simply as "Resident 3", which wasn't helping. Fortunately, though, I was able to make out a name on the Korean Wikipedia page: Kim Do Young. So, when you see references to that name in the fic, that's who I'm talking about.

 

One last Note: While this story can stand on its own, it does also allude to events in my earlier "Yong Pal" fanfics, "Your Sister's Keeper" and "One Summer Night". So if you haven't read those first, it might help to do so before beginning this fic: again, it's not mandatory, but should minimize confusion about story elements that are purely of my own imagination.

 

Once again, please do not re-post anything from this fic without my permission! If you want to share this, just share the URL link on the website of your choice. Thanks!

 

Spoiler

Tidings of Comfort and Joy

 

Pursing my lips in thought, I scan over the ornaments in the box that I have in front of me. Which one should I put up next?

 

“Ya, Sang Chul-ah,” I call down from my spot on top of the ladder. “What do you think: should I put one of the baubles here, or one of the snowflakes?”

 

Standing as close to the base of the ladder as he is, Lee Sang Chul is forced to crick his neck back to peer up at me, brow furrowed in thought. “I don’t know, Hyung – aren’t you the one with the better view?”

 

“Up close, you mean,” I bark back at him. “But you’re the one who’s got a better view of the tree as a whole.” I bite my lip to suppress a sudden urge to laugh. “So help me out here!”

 

He answers me with a nod, stepping back several paces so he could see the massive Christmas tree from the centre of Yeo Jin’s formal parlour. But if I’m expecting an answer, it’s not coming – in fact, Sang Chul takes so long slowly walking back and forth that I soon find myself stopping him.

 

“Ah, screw it!” I call down, reaching into the box for a white bauble decorated with gold scrollwork. “I’ll just do it myself.”

 

Despite my frustration, once I get started, the job turns out easier than I thought. All of the different ornaments have been chosen with the room’s main colour scheme – white, gold, and dark blue – in mind, so it ends up that I can just put anything anywhere and it’ll still work. As I work my way down the tree, stepping down on the ladder one rung at a time, I think back to the instructions Butler Yeo gave me when I’d insisted on helping the staff out with the decorations this morning:

 

Spaced out, but random – don’t crowd a bunch of the same thing together, but it shouldn’t look like there’s a pattern either.

 

Sure enough, I hear her coming around now, having just finished checking the maids’ progress on the other side.

 

“Is this what you meant?” I ask, reaching over at the same time to clip a tiny remote-control candle on a branch to my left. “I tried to ask Sang Chul, but he’s just as clueless as me.”

 

He bursts out a quick “Hyung!” in protest, but when I glance down at the butler for affirmation, she’s got a look of thinly veiled amusement on her face.

 

“Well, Master,” she points out matter-of-factly, “what you have is rather more ‘organized chaos’ than what I would have done.” Then, a moment later, she adds, “But it isn’t bad.”

 

Her response makes me want to laugh, but I’m still precariously perched a good way up off the ground, so I force myself to hold it in. Out of all the staff here, Butler Yeo’s the most likely to just give me a straight answer, yet even she caves to that knee-jerk deference so common to people like us.

 

It’s during the shared sympathetic look we send to each other that Yeo Jin waltzes in. In a flash, everyone turns to her with a bow or at least a nod in acknowledgment. Even I can’t help joining in, despite knowing that my doing so will, once again, become the biggest joke at tonight’s downstairs party.

 

Old habits do die hard, after all.

 

My gesture doesn’t go unnoticed, as next thing I know, Yeo Jin plants herself at the foot of the ladder, hands on her hips. She tilts her head coyly to one side. “And just what do you think you’re doing?”

 

I flash her a sheepish smile. “Mianhae, Yeo Jin-ah,” I answer, “but you know me. I can’t just stand around and do nothing when everyone else is working so hard to get ready.” Even her, I might add – last I checked, she’d been going over last-minute details for tonight’s catering with the cook. “Besides,” I continue, turning back to resume my task, “I’ve never done this before, so cut me some slack.”

 

Sure enough, that gets her attention. “Jeongmal?” she asks. “You’ve never decorated a Christmas tree before?”

 

I bite back yet another laugh. “Ya, Han Yeo Jin – you’ve seen my place. Where the hell do you think I would’ve had the room? And the place where I grew up was even smaller! But even more than that, we never really did Christmas when I was a kid, so this is practically my first time.”

 

Although I can’t see her face from here, I can sense when Yeo Jin nods in understanding.

 

“Geu rae – this would be your first, what with you being newly baptized and all.” A pause. “Komawo, Tae Hyun-ah – I know that wasn’t an easy decision for you.”

 

“Only because you wanted a church wedding so badly,” I quip back breezily. “Honestly, I’m not sure if I’m quite there yet when it comes to doctrine.”

 

There are, after all, still several major questions that I need to work through on my own: things that even the old priest who has been guiding me every step of the way has admitted could very well take an entire lifetime of soul-searching to figure out. But all things considered, I knew enough to give the correct responses at the pre-baptismal interview, and that’s all that matters for the time being.

 

Thank goodness, then, that Yeo Jin has been more than patient throughout this whole process; she might not be as knowledgeable as the priest, but she understands me and my own personal struggles better than anyone else could.

 

Sure enough, now that we’re on the subject now, she responds as she always does. “Well, let me know if you need someone to talk to; you know I’m always free.” With that as transition, she then excuses herself and starts to saunter away.

 

I steal a moment glancing after her, but a pointedly cleared throat from Butler Yeo snaps me back to my senses. Soon, I’m back to putting up ornaments, working myself into a mindless rhythm.

 

That is, until my phone rings.

 

Startled right out of my reverie, I fumble to answer it, moving so quickly that I don’t even notice my arm brushing against the box of ornaments until it’s swept right off the ladder down to the floor.

 

Crash!

 

All of us – Lee Sang Chul, Butler Yeo, the tag-team of maids on the other side of the tree, myself – freeze. For a single long moment, the only sound in the entire parlour is the still-ringing phone in my hand. Then, after I’ve stared helplessly down at the mess on the floor for Lord-knows-how-long, it comes out:

 

“Ai, ssibal….”

 

If anyone hears that, they’re gracious enough to keep quiet as I finally turn back to my phone. “Yeoboseyo?”

 

“Hyung!”

 

I give Do Young a perfunctory greeting, focused more on scrambling back down the ladder. Once I reach the ground, though, I jump straight to business. “So what do you want?”

 

Even though all I get is his voice, I can visualize the sheepish grin on my hoobae’s face with his response. “Well, Hyung, it’s like this: you know how we’re all coming to the party tonight.”

 

“Geu rae,” I answer promptly. “I already got your RSVP last week.”

 

Silently, Butler Yeo appears by my side with the cardboard box I dropped. Quickly, I rummage through it with one hand to survey the damage.

 

“So, well…” Do Young continues as I work, “we don’t want to come over empty-handed like we did the first time – I mean, I’m sure we’re all welcome regardless, Hyungsoo-nim being one of our former patients and all, but….”

 

Fortunately, considering the height from which the box had fallen, the damage isn’t too bad: two of the baubles have smashed, and one of the beautifully delicate glass snowflakes is now missing an arm, but the rest seem to have survived. Nodding to Butler Yeo with a relieved smile, I excuse myself and step several paces away from the tree before resuming my conversation on the phone.“So what’s the matter?”

 

“What should we bring as a hostess gift?”

 

His answer makes me stop right in my tracks. “Jjinjja?” I ask, incredulous. “You’re honestly calling to ask me that?”

 

“Aw, Hyung!” he whines. “Help me out: I don’t wanna mess this up!”

 

For a moment, I’m torn between rolling my eyes and snickering; in the end, I go with the latter. It was Kim Do Young’s earnest goodness that had made me take him under my wing ever since we first met in med school – and it’s good to know that he still hasn’t lost it, so many years later.

 

“Arasseo,” I answer at length. “Run your ideas by me and I’ll do what I can.”

 

“Well, we tried looking it up online,” he begins, “and Nurse Song saw something about bringing a bottle of wine, and–”

 

My burst of laughter cuts him off mid-sentence. “Ya, Kim Do Young – jugulae?!” I blurt out. “Wine? For a liver transplant recipient?!”

 

Just as expected, he joins in on my amusement. “That’s what I said!”

 

I snicker again. “There’s Nurse Song for you: she means well, but she can be an idiot sometimes.” After a moment’s pause, I add, “If you were to ask me…going by our habits, I think coffee beans would be good. You know that I need that more than food to function in the morning, and Yeo Jin’s a bit of a connoisseur. So pool money on the best bag you can get, and that should work for the whole lot of you.”

 

“Ah,” Do Young says. “Geu rae, that makes sense. Alright, Hyung – will do.”

 

We end the phone call on one last promise to spend more time catching up tonight. Smiling at the thought, I put my phone back in my jeans pocket, only to be intercepted once again by Butler Yeo. “Is everything alright, Master?”

 

“Mm.” I glance past her at the Christmas tree, one hand reaching up of its own accord to grasp the nape of my neck. “A-about those ornaments….”

 

“Gwenchansumnida,” she replies smoothly, her tone just as gentle and warm as if she were simply informing me it’s time for dinner. “No need to apologize. But if you will forgive me for saying so, Master, perhaps it would be better for us to take over from here.”

 

“Geu rae,” I concede sheepishly. “You’re right about that. I know you said not to apologize, but mianhae – I’m not usually such a klutz.”

 

I make to leave at this point, but she stops me yet again with a pointedly cleared throat. “Wae?”

 

One corner of her mouth twitches up into a knowing smirk as she holds out a hand, palm facing upwards. “That’ll be ten thousand.”

 

My jaw drops. “Eh?”

 

“You know – for the other thing you dropped besides those ornaments.”

 

Other thing?

 

Quickly, I cast my mind back to what happened earlier. What else had I managed to drop besides–

 

Oh.

 

“Aish,” I whine as, unable to resist the urge to roll my eyes, I reach for my wallet. “Do we have to do this?”

 

Butler Yeo, however, is undeterred. “You know the rules.”

 

“But still!” I quip back in response. “Isn’t ten a bit much?”

 

“That’s for the Chairwoman to decide, not me.” She raises a perfectly arched eyebrow. “Besides, the penalty has to hurt a little if it’s going to stick.”

 

“Ne, ne – arasseo.” Quickly, but still rather reluctantly, I surrender the ten-thousand-won note, slapping it down into her hand. “But trust me: I’m already doing my best.”

 

“I’m aware of that,” she replies smoothly. “But you’re the Chairwoman’s husband and a baptized Catholic now – we can’t have you cussing like someone from the gutter anymore.”

 

Never mind that I was, quite frankly, from said gutter to begin with.

 

~~~~~

 

No sooner have I stepped out of the kitchen from yet another breather does Yeo Jin sidle up beside me, the train of her long dark blue velvet gown swishing behind her.

 

“There you were, Tae Hyun-ah,” she purrs, linking one arm with mine. “I was wondering where you’d disappeared off to.”

 

“Mianhae,” I answer softly, accepting the drink she offers me – sparkling juice, I having decided to join her in only opting for non-alcoholic choices tonight. “But you know me: I’m still not used to social gatherings like this.”

 

“Oh?” Yeo Jin tilts her head in curiosity. “I thought you liked parties.”

 

“I do! Just…just not when it feels like I’m under everyone’s scrutiny.”

 

“Ara,” she quips back, now surreptitiously steering me back to the public parts of the mansion. “However, that being said, Tae Hyun-ah, do at least try to put it up with it just this once. Ideally, this would have already been done and over with at the last party we hosted. But you know what happened then.”

 

“Mm.” Nothing more needs to be said than that, the series of events following that party a rather unpleasant memory for both of us.

 

Yeo Jin gives me a reassuring pat on the arm, and then we part ways: each of us to different parts of the parlour to join the mingling guests. I’m sure she takes to it with practiced ease, flitting from one small cluster to the next to exchange trivial greetings and well wishes; but when it comes to my turn, more often than not, I find myself just standing there at a complete loss of words beyond a simple “Merry Christmas”.

 

It’s not that I don’t know Yeo Jin’s guests; by now, I’ve seen enough of them here and there to recognize that they’re Hanshin’s major shareholders or the leaders of major business partners. But when I’ve met more than my fair share of these folks up on the twelfth floor, every handshake, every exchanged greeting and smile, carries some sort of hidden meaning: that silent awareness that I know their deepest darkest secrets, that the doctor they had felt comfortable airing their dirty laundry to is now the husband of the woman upon whose wealth they depend.

 

But even that is nothing compared to the women: the wives of the fat old businessmen who now hog the conversation. They might be the picture-perfect loving companions now, but I know better. Several of these corporate wives I have seen before, deep in the distant past: sneaking out with friends to seedy bars and nightclubs, seeking out young boys as desperate for their money as they were for love and companionship. It might have been almost ten years ago by this point, but I still remember – here, too, is a reversal of power, the person on the bottom now having risen to the top.

 

So it’s with more than just a little bit of relief that, in answer to his wave, I hurry to join Kim Do Young and my other former colleagues in the next room. Unlike the grandeur of the formal parlour, this space, normally a family room or den, is close and intimate. Lights placed at strategic intervals around the floor shine up to reflect off the turned-off crystal chandelier, casting a series of sparkling lights throughout the room. Small clusters of people gather at the buffet table set up along the back wall as well as the standing-room tables scattered about; my friends are at one of those now, and as I come closer, Do Young pulls me in with a hearty slap on the back.

 

“Finally, Hyung!” he gushes, gesturing for me to partake in the array of snacks they’d managed to compile in the centre of the table. “Who would’ve thought the receiving line was that long?”

 

“I know, right?” I quip back, throwing in a wink for good measure as I help myself to a canape. “But here I am with you guys, and I have no intention whatsoever of budging anytime soon.”

 

“And we’re glad to hear it,” Nurse Kang points out wryly.

 

We all share a laugh, but in the silence that follows, I feel Do Young prodding me in the shoulder.

 

“Wae?”

 

He points over to the far corner of the room. “That girl over there…is that your sister?”

 

“So Hyun-ie?” I look over in that direction, then answer with a nod. “Mm.”

 

“Jinjja?” He looks back and forth between us. “Ya…I’ve gotten so used to just seeing her as a patient – who would’ve thought she had a voice like that? Is she planning on becoming a singer?”

 

“Maybe,” I answer with a shrug. “She took part in a competition this past summer, and I definitely think she’s got potential.”

 

A snort from Nurse Kang. “Of course you would.”

 

“She didn’t place, though,” I continue. As the others wince in sympathy, I hastily move to reassure them. “Gwenchana – So Hyun’s tough. One setback isn’t gonna hurt her anytime soon. But to answer your question, Do Young-ah: she’s the one in charge of tonight’s music.” A fond smile creeps its way onto my face. “Yeo Jin thought it would be a good way for her to get some exposure, maybe even some future gigs if any of the other guests take to her.”

 

We settle back, then, and let the music take over. Given that it’s just meant to be some background entertainment, So Hyun has kept things simple: sometimes singing on her own, sometimes playing along on her guitar or accompanied by one of Lee Sang Chul’s colleagues on the grand piano. Every now and then, just so she could have a break, he takes over with the singing as well, purring out soft jazzy Christmas hits in a gentle tenor. At one point, they even come together in a duet, performing a simple rendition of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”. Several of the other partigoers in the audience sway along with the song’s easy rhythm; as for me, I jokingly direct an “I’m watching you” gesture when So Hyun makes eye contact with me, right at the moment her part of the song brings up an over-protective older brother.

 

When So Hyun finally steps away from the piano on a short break, I fetch a drink and assemble a small plate of snacks from the buffet and head over towards her. “How’s it going, kiddo?”

 

She accepts the drink with a kind word of thanks, but leaves me holding onto the food. “It’s been good.”

 

One eyebrow quirks up in interest. “Oh?” I join her in leaning back against the wall, out of the way of the guests. “Has there been much interest?”

 

So Hyun shakes her head. “Ani.” Eyes twinkling in barely suppressed amusement, she gestures to the table I’d just left. “Not everyone’s as attentive an audience as you guys have been.”

 

I let out a soft chuckle. “You can say that again. I had to remind Do Young twice in about as many minutes that you’re already taken – and that he’d be no match against Lee Sang Chul in a fight.”

 

We share a laugh and spend a few minutes just chatting with each other, but are soon interrupted by So Hyun’s partner.  Quietly, he tells us that Yeo Jin will be coming into this room soon, so she needs to get back to singing.

 

When she glances questioningly at me, I wave for her to go on ahead. “I get to see you at home anyways, so let Yeo Jin have her chance to listen to you.”

 

“Geu rae; arasseo,” she answers promptly, throwing in a nod for good measure. “But don’t go anywhere, Oppa!” She gives me a playful wink. “This next one’s gonna be for you.”

 

So Hyun hands me her empty glass, which I set down absentmindedly on the table beside me, and flits back to her post – just in time for the security guard posted by the door to announce Yeo Jin’s entrance.

 

All eyes turn to Yeo Jin as she glides down the steps into the room; the entryway fills up as people from the parlour crowd in to peer in curiously behind her. Turning her head this way and that to smile and nod to everyone in greeting, she comes over to my side.

 

“Well, don’t you know how to make an entrance,” I point out wryly as a suit-clad waiter comes forward with a tray of drinks.

 

“Jinjja?” Yeo Jin laughs as she makes her selection: yet another glass of sparkling juice. “Would you believe me if I said I don’t do it on purpose?”

 

“Actually, with you, I would.”

 

We exchange a small secret smile, then I direct Yeo Jin’s attention to the piano. “I believe So Hyun-ie has something special prepared just for you.”

 

Recognizing her cue, So Hyun hurriedly sets down her water bottle in the corner and steps up to the microphone. For just a split second, she hesitates, but then I see her beam out at the audience.

 

“Chairwoman, all of our honoured guests…I want to thank you all for this opportunity to perform for you tonight. It’s been a magical experience that I’ll never forget. Christmas is the time we spend with our friends, family, and loved ones – so I want to dedicate this next song to the person who means the most to me.”

 

With an intro like that, I really should have seen it coming, but I still start in surprise when So Hyun stretches out her hand in my direction. All eyes turn on me in an instant; I feel a strong urge to shrink back into the wall, but Yeo Jin stops me with a reassuring pat on the arm.

 

“For those of you who don’t know,” So Hyun continues, “Dr. Kim Tae Hyun is my Oppa, and I couldn’t ask for one better. He’s been by my side for as long as I could remember, always there for me no matter how tough things have gotten.

 

“For putting you on the spot like this, Oppa, mianhada. But I truly believe that the world deserves to know all the great things you’ve done for me.”

 

As everyone else in the room breaks into polite applause, I feel something pricking in my eyes. Hastily, I tilt my head up to look into a distant corner, blinking rapidly as I cough subtly to dislodge the lump that’s suddenly appeared in my throat.

 

Damn. So Hyun hasn’t even started, and already I’m getting sentimental.

 

If she notices the effect her words have had on me, she doesn’t show it. Instead, acting every inch a seasoned professional, she mouths something to her accompanist who, with a single nod in agreement, starts to play.

 

Do you remember me?

I sat upon your knee.

I wrote to you with childhood fantasies.

But I’m all grown up now,

And still need help somehow.

I’m not a child, but my heart still can dream.

 

So here’s my lifelong wish,

My grown-up Christmas list:

Not for myself, but for a world in need.

 

Never mind that she says otherwise: So Hyun knows that my English is just fine. So I have no problem whatsoever understanding what she’s singing now.

 

No more lives torn apart,

That wars would never start,

And time would heal our hearts,

And everyone would have a friend,

And right would always win,

And love would never end.

This is my grown-up Christmas list.

 

So Hyun looks straight at me as she sings the chorus: every single line is a wish for a better and brighter future, one where we would no longer be torn between choosing right or wrong.

 

I used to tell Eomma that someone in my shoes didn’t have a choice: that the only way to survive in this world was to suppress my own conscience. But that wasn’t me; that mooching sycophantic money-bug was never me. Deep down inside, I know that the real me is the one that now works at First Floor Clinic and volunteers at the church.

 

And for So Hyun to now bring that out into the open? It’s more than I could have asked for.

 

What started off as a soulful ballad soon becomes more upbeat, So Hyun repeating the chorus with a lighter skipping beat. It’s infectious; in no time, I’m bopping along with the music, as are several others in the audience.

 

The applause is a lot more heartfelt the second time around; out of the corner of my eye, I spy some couples holding each other close, and at least one person is subtly dabbing at their eyes. At her place in the front, So Hyun beams as she dips down in a deep bow from the waist.

 

And then she’s stepping out from behind the microphone. Yeo Jin, whose arm had been linked with mine, now lets go and before I know it, I’m draping my arm around So Hyun’s shoulders and pulling her close.

 

“That was awesome, kiddo,” I murmur to her as I plant a soft kiss on her forehead. “Komawo.”

 

My sister leans in closer, resting her head on my chest as I run my fingers gently through her hair. “I’m glad you like it,” she says, peering up at me with a contented smile. “Merry Christmas, Oppa – saranghae.”

 

Author's Note (in "Hidden Contents" because of spoilers)

 

Spoiler

So, there's not a whole ton to say here. This really was just a quick little ditty that popped up in my mind - and, in light of the darker, more mature tone of my previous Christmas-themed fic, I thought it was worth actually getting it down for those who would prefer just to have warm fuzzies for the holidays.

 

However, as always, I like to offer a small behind-the-scenes look - so here goes!

 

1. The bit about Kim Tae Hyun being a caffeine addict (i.e. where he asks for coffee beans as a Christmas/hostess gift)? That's my Easter Egg for this fic, inspired by a real-life coffee addict we all know and love ;) 

 

2. The two musical numbers in this fic are based on actual live performances I found on YouTube: not by Park Hye Soo (i.e. So Hyun) - although that would have been so cool - but Ailee. So, if anyone's wanting some Christmas listening to accompany the fic, I'll share them below:

 

a) "Baby, It's Cold Outside" - Ailee and Sung Si Kyung

 

 

b) "My Grown-Up Christmas List" - Ailee and Hwang Chan Hee (piano)

 

 

3. While I don't really describe it in much detail - Tae Hyun not being a very fashion-conscious narrator to begin with - I do want to show you guys the dress I envisioned Han Yeo Jin wearing in this fic, simply because it just screamed "Han Yeo Jin" to me (seriously - compare it to the white evening gown she wears in the drama, and you'll see what I mean):

 

338d85e5-f822-4a6a-9655-8623dfbde1fc.JPG

 

(By the way, considering from the mirror shot that this is a backless dress...count that as Easter Egg #2 ;))

 

 

So, that's it for this fic! If you want to access any of my other fics, there is a master list under the "About Me" tab on my profile page.

 

Thanks for reading - and Merry Christmas!

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On 12/2/2019 at 10:14 AM, kittyna said:

Doesn't Have a Dog, And Doesn't Want One

Gu Ma Jun (I dunno...I just don't see him as the pet-owning type - but I could be wrong)

Cha Yoo Jin (because Nae Il's enough chaos as it is :P Just kidding, but in all seriousness, I think he'd find pets too boisterous, especially dogs. If anything, he'd have a cat)

 

:lol:

 

This made me laugh so much..

Cha Yoo Jin specially..he definitely doesn't need a dog considering his personality and he already has his hands and mind full with energetic puppy Nae Il..:joy: 

Anyways I can't believe that we actually went two years without an JW projects..I almost lost my interest for new kdramas. I feel like re watching my old favorites.. So Can't wait for his comeback drama..There's a possibility of seeing Joo Won  in SBS Drama Awards 2019 with Kim Hee Sun. New hyped drama leads usually comes to present award for promotion in SBS Drama Awards. But that depends on when the drama is coming and if the trailer is ready. I hope it is. 

 

OH! We're on page 2800! :heart:

HRHl.gif

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On 12/29/2019 at 6:19 AM, flutterby06 said:

This made me laugh so much..

Cha Yoo Jin specially..he definitely doesn't need a dog considering his personality and he already has his hands and mind full with energetic puppy Nae Il..:joy: 

 

Yeah - and he literally does compare Nae Il to a dog in the show, too ;) 

 

I do see Cha Yoo Jin as being a cat person, though, if he should ever get a pet. It's unlikely for practical reasons (i.e. if he or Nae Il are planning to spend their careers going on tour like his parents did, it's really hard to take care of a pet as well), but if he did, he would want something quiet that could mind its own business.

 

Also, since I know you don't read my fics all that often, @flutterby06, I will say that in my Seolleim in Salzburg fic series, I have Nae Il actually describing Yoo Jin as a "grumpy cat" on at least one occasion - since that actually fits his personality quite well :P 

 

By the way, since it looks like people here like those rapid-fire character comparisons/ratings/rankings, I should seriously think of sharing a couple more. Hm...I'll have to think about that :smirk:

 

On 12/29/2019 at 6:19 AM, flutterby06 said:

Anyways I can't believe that we actually went two years without an JW projects..I almost lost my interest for new kdramas. I feel like re watching my old favorites.. So Can't wait for his comeback drama..There's a possibility of seeing Joo Won  in SBS Drama Awards 2019 with Kim Hee Sun. New hyped drama leads usually comes to present award for promotion in SBS Drama Awards. But that depends on when the drama is coming and if the trailer is ready. I hope it is. 

 

Well, I don't know about any trailers or promotions just yet, but the new drama has already started filming, so it should start broadcasting within the next couple of months or so - depends on if it's a pre-produced or live-shoot format, though.

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Happy New Year, everybody!

 

It's technically still New Year's Eve where I am - and will be for a while. But I am aware that those folks close to the Pacific are starting to ring in the new year about now, so let's start the celebration :) 

 

First of all...here's your "Alice" teaser, everybody! :star:

 

 

 

lol - Looks like you ended up calling it, @flutterby06! I hadn't known teasers during drama awards was a thing, but here we go :love: It looks like it'll be some straight-up sci-fi action here, so that's definitely interesting. I've only seen JW doing sci-fi in that mini-web-drama he did a few years back, so it'll be nice to see him tackling a more fleshed out character and story in that genre.

 

Now that that's out of the way, here's what I was actually going on Instagram for:

 

 

Finally, I've got another rapid-fire character comparison for today. This time, given that it is New Year's, the question I'll be answering if this: Which of JW's characters is most - or least - likely to enjoy going to a New Year's Eve party?

 

That means I'm thinking of the whole atmosphere: big crowds, glitz and glamour, lots of action and excitement leading into the countdown, party food and alcoholic drinks...the whole shebang. So here's what I've got.

 

Is the Centre of Attention at the Party

Han Gil Ro (he's got the whole rich playboy image down, and while "Level 7 Civil Servant" wasn't particularly memorable as far as dramas go, I do remember his karaoke/noraebang skills were right up there ;))

Gyun Woo (boy would need a time machine first :P, but I think he would enjoy it, based off the snippets of "My Sassy Girl" I've seen so far)

Lee Kang To (he already moonlights as a singer/dancer at the local jazz bar - plus, I'd argue that he's got the best dance moves out of all of JW's characters) 

 

 

Spoiler

And here's a fun bonus, since its more a full-cast thing:

 

 

 

Likes the Party, but Stays on the Sidelines

Gu Ma Jun (we do see him as the suave, flirty, nightclubbing sort, but I think he'd need some time to warm up before he really works up the confidence to join in. Plus, his fun-loving and serious sides would be warring with each other quite a bit.)

Kim Tae Hyun (for him, the more low-key and casual the party is, the better. So, if it's just ringing in the new year with friends and family, that's fine - but now that he's with the Chairwoman of Hanshin...that's never gonna happen, is it? :P)

Park Si On (he's the guy who everyone thinks is going to hate it...but if it's a relatively safe setting with good friends, he surprises everyone by just how much he gets into it. Honestly, watching Si On at his own welcome party was the cutest thing ever :))

 

Would Prefer to Skip Out - If He's There, Someone Dragged Him

Hwang Tae Hui (I think he could put forth the effort to join in, just a little - but he's definitely wanting it to be over quickly)

Cha Yoo Jin (more specifically: Nae Il dragged him. Or Yoo Il Rak. Take your pick. :P Even if he tries to pull out, he's still not safe - they'll just relocate the party to his place instead :D)

 

Spoiler

Re: Cha Yoo Jin - either what I said above, OR he ends up turning into this guy:

 

 

 

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On 12/31/2019 at 9:18 PM, kittyna said:

 

lol - Looks like you ended up calling it, @flutterby06! I hadn't known teasers during drama awards was a thing, but here we go :love: It looks like it'll be some straight-up sci-fi action here, so that's definitely interesting. I've only seen JW doing sci-fi in that mini-web-drama he did a few years back, so it'll be nice to see him tackling a more fleshed out character and story in that genre.

 

Now that that's out of the way, here's what I was actually going on Instagram for:

 

He he..It's actually a trend specially in SBS drama awards as far as I can recall, I started following SBS drama Awards since 2016 may be. Sometimes the leads of new dramas even comes to present awards. But looks like Joo Won didn't came. It's just the trailer. The trailer looks very vague to me but it looks like JW( His character is a detective/police) is looking for his mother's killer. And Kim Hee Sun has something to do with her son. Is it possible that Joo Won And Kim Hee Sun are mother-son or is it they're talking about different mother-son... Or is it too early to give theories..? :w00t:

Looking forward to extended trailer.

 

Joo Won looks so good :D

 

 

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1 hour ago, flutterby06 said:

The trailer looks very vague to me but it looks like JW( His character is a detective/police) is looking for his mother's killer. And Kim Hee Sun has something to do with her son. Is it possible that Joo Won And Kim Hee Sun are mother-son or is it they're talking about different mother-son... Or is it too early to give theories..? :w00t:

 

Well, there have been a few clues given in the general plot/character premises that have come along with the casting news articles:

  • Kim Hee Sun's character is one who supposedly "died in the past" - and yet she's also alive now? If this drama was made a few years ago, I'd be thinking reincarnation, but now...maybe she actually time-travelled instead of dying???
  • When Kim Hee Sun's character and JW's character meet, JW claims that their meeting is fate - Is it because he's working on a case that involves time-travel/"Alice" and she knows something about it? Or is there even more than that?
  • Kim Hee Sun and JW both play themselves at multiple ages - This was announced from the start for Kim Hee Sun, but we see that to be the case for JW now as well. However, given that this is about time travel, the actual age-time continuum might not actually be logical or sequential (i.e. do we see the younger versions of these characters in the past, the present, or the future?)

Yeah, I think guessing is fun, but I'm also aware that the drama probably has something entirely different up its sleeve: those character premise notes and teaser trailers are seldom accurate :P 

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lol - In hindsight, I should probably have just let fans who actually understand Korean do it ;) 

 

 

Now, I do still stand by my earlier comment that quotes in teaser trailers are usually shown completely out of context - and, thus, the impressions they create are not always accurate. BUT - can I just say that, in my opinion at least, the possibility of Kim Hee Sun playing JW's mother just made this drama a whole ton more interesting for me? Like, I was already behind this drama with the initial assumption that they would be a couple, but this just might be a ton more intriguing.

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Thanks, @tokkimoon! I came here to post those pics as well, but you beat me to it :heart:

 

So, instead, I'll share another sort-of-fashion-related thing:

 

What are your thoughts on JW's high school look in "Alice"?

 

 

 

lol - It's funny that the main tactic drama and film producers do to try to make JW look younger is to have him brush his bangs down :P "Fashion King" did the same thing, too. But still...I'm not sure if JW could pull it off; he was never the most baby-faced actor to begin with, and he's in his early 30s now.... :unsure:

 

Second big thing: the next installment of my Seolleim in Salzburg series will be posted later this month. So, for now, here's Preview 1 (which I chose to make another fashion-based moment) ;) 

 

Spoiler

Good thing I’d thought ahead and put on my shoes first.

 

As I carefully do up my shirt, working from top to bottom to give myself more room to manoeuvre each stud into place, I feel it closing in around me. The thick stiffened front panel, plain save for a subtle woven texture, lies snugly flat, pressing tightly against my chest like a piece of armour.

 

And armour it is. Dress shirts like this are designed this way for a purpose: to force their wearer to stand up completely straight and erect, head held up high with the help of a similar stiffened collar. Then – and only then, it is said – can the tailcoat’s elegant silhouette be achieved.

 

Eyes flicking up to my own reflection in the hotel room mirror, I mull over it for a moment before shaking my head.

 

I have to admit that it does look good – but I’ll be damned before I ever wear this up on the podium. I’m neither the first nor the last conductor to feel this way: more than once, I’ve seen them cheat during a performance, pairing their tailcoats with a thinner, looser-fitting shirt, and I have always done the same.

 

Fortunately, the next few items on tonight’s outfit come more easily. A pair of white cufflinks – Nae Il’s most recent Christmas present for me – each one decorated with a subtle treble and bass clef respectively. Braces, followed by my white waistcoat, attached to both my shirt and trousers by a series of hidden buttons and tabs.

 

“Orabang!”

 

I call out over my shoulder to the bathroom door behind me. “Wae?”

 

“Could you” – a soft grunt of effort – “could you lace me up, juesyo?”

 

My jaw drops. “Mwo?”

 

“My dress, Orabang – I can’t do it up by myself.”

 

Ah. So that’s what this is about.

 

Eyes dancing in knowing mischief, I bite back the urge to laugh. “Do you want to come out, then, Nae Il-ah, or should I come in?”

 

In the mirror, I see the bathroom door click open, Nae Il just barely visible in the crack. One of her hands is hidden from view, but the other is pressed firmly to her chest, holding her dress in place so it doesn’t fall.

 

As my eyes flicker over her reflection, she sheepishly worries her bottom lip. “I – I think it’s better if you come in, Orabang,” she murmurs. “I’m afraid I might just trip over this thing if I try to move now.”

 

Finally, I turn around to face her. “Geu rae. Arasseo.” With a wave of my hand, she shuffles back several paces as I step inside the bathroom with her.

 

:flushed: Omo. Did Nae Il just - and did Yoo Jin just...? Wow. 

 

(No worries, guys - I'm never going to write 19+ stuff here, to use the Korean way of referring to it. But still: you'll have to wait for the final product to know just what happens in there ;))

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On 1/5/2020 at 8:26 AM, tokkimoon said:

Totally loving his jacket/sweater. They are so comfy. :P Sherpa is totally trendy these days. I love mine.

 

Sorry for not replying earlier, but yes - I have noticed that JW prefers comfort over looks in his personal style :) 

 

Which actually got me thinking of another quick character ranking list: Who is the most fashion-conscious or vain out of JW's drama characters? Not who has the best fashion/style, but who actually cares about that the most (vs. just throwing on whatever's comfortable).

 

Compared to my other ranking lists, this one has a bit of a different format because I want to actually go into a little bit more detail than usual. It's also all posted under the "Hidden Content" tag because of the number of images involved.

 

So, starting from the bottom and working my way up....

 

Spoiler

8. Hwang Tae Hui

 

Joo Won as Hwang Tae Hee in "Ojakgyo Brothers" - 33 Likes, 3 Comments - ⭐Joo Won Int'L & Iranian Fans⭐ (@joowon_lovers) on Instagram: “#joowon#Joowon#JOOWON#munjunwon#moonjoowon#Drama#KBS#ojakgyofamily”

 

Let me just say first that none of the characters on this list are slobs - they all seem to know what looks good on them and dress accordingly. However, I would say that for Tae Hui, fashion is far less of a priority than practicality is. After all, he's a police detective: he's going to care more about whether he could comfortably run around in what he's wearing than how he looks. Especially when he's on a case - in those points in the drama, he's on the road for days at a time with scarcely enough time to even shave or take a shower, let alone change his clothes. (Okay, now I'm just imagining what would happen if he winds up in the same room as some of the characters from the opposite end of this list :P - but I digress.) Not to say that he doesn't neaten up really nicely when he needs to (because he does), but it's quite telling that he has no idea how to do up his own tie - simply because he never really has to wear one ;) 

 

7. Park Si On

 

Joo Won is dashing in a white coat for upcoming KBS 2TV drama ‘Good Doctor’

 

Considering that his job requires him to go about in scrubs and a white doctor's coat the vast majority of the time, I think he can get away with not thinking much about fashion at all. However, I'm actually putting Park Si On all the way down here on the list, because I think that he's also going to prioritize comfort over looks - not so much due to his profession (as in Tae Hui's case above), but because of his autism. People with autism spectrum disorders oftentimes have heightened or intensified physical senses; it's not so much that they see/hear/feel/smell/taste/etc. more than most people, but that they struggle with prioritizing (and hence tuning out) sensory input. So imagine if, say, you can't ignore the fact that your sweater is really itchy or that the corner of your shirt tag is poking you in the back of the neck...that gets really annoying after a while, so it's likely you'll try to avoid wearing those garments altogether. So, again: comfort and function over appearance here. I do wonder, though, about his particular quirk of always doing up all of his shirt buttons (by comparison, JW's other characters will actually vary that quite a bit).

 

6. Kim Tae Hyun

 

Yong Pal - Joo Won, Kim Tae Hee

 

Personally, he was a fun character for me to watch costume/fashion-wise, because Tae Hyun's style goes through several distinct phases over the course of the drama. At the start, we see that, again, he really doesn't care all that much about fashion; he's more your typical jeans-and-T-shirt kind of guy. In part, this is because of his lower/working class background, but I think his being a doctor - especially his role as Yong Pal - has something to do with it, too: point is, he's more interested in being able to get around easily than in looking good. He does, however, care a good deal about personal hygiene and cleanliness - again, since he's a doctor and one that's very much involved in front-line first aid as well. Later, on the 12th floor, we see him looking a lot more put together - but he's definitely uncomfortable in the more formal and expensive style that he's expected to emulate. So, for me, the style that best encapsulates Tae Hyun's character is what we see after his marriage to Han Yeo Jin: put together while still being laid back (e.g. pairing jeans with a nice sweater, or that black leather jacket he wears near the end - which is a personal favourite fashion moment for me).

 

5. Han Gil Ro

 

Joo Won appeals to women with his wink on My Girlfriend is an Agent | Joowonies Pyong

 

Now, to be frank, my memory is a bit fuzzier here, so I'll keep this brief. I do, however, recall Han Gil Ro to be someone who knows he looks good and flaunts it. His style is definitely brighter and more colourful than what I've featured on this list so far, and his costumes also cover a wide range between more casual and more formal pieces. A bit of a boy-next-door, perhaps - if said boy was absolutely loaded? ;) As an extra tidbit, though, I do remember reading one fan/news article saying that the couple fashions in this drama were pretty on point :) 

 

4. Cha Yoo Jin

 

Joo Won - Tomorrow Cantabile

 

Wait, what? Yeah, I know what you're thinking: given how many times I've gushed over liking his style, why isn't he higher on this list? Well, that's because while I do think Yoo Jin's fashion sense is awesome - it really is a personal favourite of mine not just in JW's dramas, but in all the dramas I've watched in general - I don't think he's someone who really cares about it all that much. He's way more interested in looking neat and put together than actually being fashionable or in style - nor do I think he would be willing to invest a lot of time or effort into keeping up with trends or maintaining his looks. However, what works to Yoo Jin's advantage is that rather than staying in fashion, he seems to have honed his style down into one that's relatively timeless: he's got a great capsule mix-and-matchable wardrobe more akin to that of a young professional than a university student. Seriously: his definition of casual is most young 20-somethings' version of business casual, and he's also got the snazziest (or fanciest) work outfit out of everybody on this list (I kid you not: tails are now considered the most formal item in menswear today - even more formal than a tuxedo. So Yoo Jin's work clothes are literally more formal than what any of the other guys in this list would wear to his wedding - do the math.)

 

3. Gu Ma Jun

 

Joo Won 주원- Welcome Back ! - actors & actresses - Soompi Forums

 

This is when we start getting into the "caring about fashion and what it does for him" side of the spectrum. Although, as with Han Gil Ro, I really only have vague memories of Ma Jun's style by this point in the game (and finding reference pics that don't just involve his baker's uniform is actually easier said than done), I do remember seeing moments where he goes out of his way to try to look good. Something about a snazzy outfit, sunglasses, the whole get-up...yeah. lol - maybe I'm less qualified for this than I thought? :P Point is: Ma Jun is the sort of person who tries to present himself as worldly and well-traveled and fashionable in order to boost his own confidence. If nothing else, he pulls off the business suit-outfits from the tail end of the drama more easily than Kim Tak Gu does.

 

7. Gyun Woo

 

My Sassy Girl SBS/2017

 

And now we're going into outright vain :D I know that might not be the fairest assessment - especially since I haven't actually watched all of "My Sassy Girl" yet - but this is one case of period costume eye candy with a male lead character to match. I mean, who else remembers that super bright (and possibly anachronistic?) get-up we see him in on the boat back to Joseon from China? Anyone? For me, it's the sunglasses that really gives that outfit personality, and that gives us as viewers a look into Gyun Woo's personality for the first time.

 

And, last but not least, my pick for Most Fashion-Conscious...

 

1. Lee Kang To

 

Joo Won - Gaksital - Bridal Mask Part 3

 

He's definitely got the clear advantage here as a character from a time when bespoke tailoring (i.e. clothes that are custom-made to the wearer's exact measurements) was more of a thing than it is today. However, it is a bit of splurge still, so it's telling that even in the context of the drama, Lee Kang To is presented as someone who pays a lot of attention to his dress. Like, it's actually a plot/character point: he throws himself even more into that image to create his Sato Hiroshi persona...which comes back around to bite him when Shunji puts two and two together and realizes that the tailor's basement is the resistance movement's hideout (whoops). Incidentally, he also pulls off that kendo uniform amazingly well - in my opinion, the one wasted opportunity in "Gaksital" costuming-wise was that we didn't get a chance to see Kang To in kimono. Dang it, show - why???

 

This was a lot of fun to write, although the rankings actually turned out to be a bit messy - a number of these could easily have been ties, or in slightly different order, depending on one's interpretation of the characters and what it means to be fashion-conscious. (No, seriously - even I changed my mind a few times working on this.)

 

And while this is not fashion per se, it's still totally flippin' cool :glasses:

 

 

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5 hours ago, airplanegirl said:

I'm definitely excited about Alice since it's a project he chose and not what his company chose for him. 

 

Thanks for that tip! I'd suspected that was the case, given how long it took to confirm, but it's great to know for sure :) 

 

By the way, does anyone know who's in charge of editing the forum name? I think it's about time we included "Alice" in there. Thanks!

 

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13 minutes ago, kittyna said:

 

Thanks for that tip! I'd suspected that was the case, given how long it took to confirm, but it's great to know for sure :) 

 

By the way, does anyone know who's in charge of editing the forum name? I think it's about time we included "Alice" in there. Thanks!

 

I'll request the MOD to change it once we have a premiere date. 

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A couple of goodies/announcements for you guys:

 

First of all - now that "Alice" seems to be making some decent progress, I'm finally making the commitment to watch "My Sassy Girl" in full! :star: 

 

Yeah, I know...took me a while :P But, in my defence, I didn't want to be stuck with the feeling of having watched all of JW's dramas without something to look forward to - since that's not the case anymore, I should at least finish off all of his pre-enlistment dramas and start with a clean slate ;) 

 

Some of you may have been around when I watched "Yong Pal". If so, you'll remember that I wrote here periodically with my impressions of the drama, its characters and plot, etc. And so I'll do the same with "My Sassy Girl" this time around. Again, it's unrealistic for me to comment on every single episode - so this will be a case of me dipping in whenever the mood strikes and time allows. :) 

 

To be honest, I am a bit apprehensive about this. Unlike with "Yong Pal", "My Sassy Girl" is the sort of drama where...well, if JW wasn't playing the lead in it, I wouldn't have been interested in it much at all. In other words: the initial premise (i.e. that it's a sageuk adaptation of a super-famous Korean rom-com movie) simply wasn't something that would draw me in at all. I have seen enough from this forum and the drama's actual forum to know that there's a lot more depth to it than just rom-com shenanigans or slapstick humour, so right now, I think what I'm really hoping to see would be that JW gets a chance to give Gyun Woo the depth that I want to see.

 

Second item - Preview 2 of my upcoming Seolleim in Salzburg fic! This time, just a sweet (emotionally) intimate moment between Yoo Jin and Nae Il:

 

Spoiler

For a long moment, a deep silence hangs over us, Nae Il probably still processing everything I’ve just told her. Then, gently, she leans in closer, tilting her head to rest it on my shoulder.

 

I give her a sideways glance. “Wae?”

 

“If they” – she nods at the Graf piano in front of us – “if the Schumanns could hear us, what might they be thinking right now?”

 

My mouth curls into a joking smirk. “What are you talking about, Seollebal? They wouldn’t even understand Korean!”

 

“Aish....” Nae Il lifts her head from my shoulder, just enough to shoot me a mock-reproachful sneer. “You’re not even trying.”

 

“Well, then,” I retort smartly, “what about you? What do you think?”

 

She lets out a soft whine, nudging me with a pout. “I asked you.”

 

Fine. If that’s how she wants it….

 

“I think,” I answer slowly as she once again rests her head on my shoulder, “they would understand. Not in the exact same way, of course – Clara, not Robert, was the one with the perfectionist disciplinarian for a father.”

 

Nae Il rears up again with a hiss. “Call it like it was, Orabang. Friedrich Wieck was an abusive narcissist who cared more about what his daughter could do for his own image than for her happiness.” She rounds on me, eyes blazing. “You know he threatened to kill Robert when he found out they liked each other, right? Kill him and destroy her career – one his student, the other his own daughter – simply because they wanted a life beyond what he’d planned for them!”

 

Her sudden ferocity sends me scooting away from her. “Alright, alright – whatever you say!” I raise both hands in surrender. “Aish, Seollebal; remind me never to get on your bad side.”

 

She shoots me a pointed look: simultaneously daring me to cross her and doubtful that that could ever actually happen. Only when I throw in a small sheepish smile, an extra “I mean it,” does she calm down. Her face gradually softens, until, at last, I feel it is safe to pick up where I’d left off.

 

“But what I meant, Nae Il-ah, was that Clara would know what it’s like to both disappoint and be disappointed by her father: love and hate and admiration all rolled into one. Whereas Robert, although he was older, was the innocent one” – I glance wistfully up at the painting on the wall – “the child in a man’s body, with his head up in the clouds.” I turn back to face her. “He was the first person in Clara’s life who let her just be herself: pursuing music not for anyone else’s gain, but simply out of her own love for it.”

 

“Oh….” Nae Il nods knowingly. “Like us, then, but in reverse.”

 

“Mm,” I answer with a shrug. “Perhaps.”

 

One more preview will be released next week, and then - the full fic :) 

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  • Guest changed the title to Joo Won 주원
  • partyon changed the title to Joo Won 주원 [Upcoming Movie "Carter" 2021]

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