Hi there, Alice Kurosawa here!
Hope you are enjoying the story, and I would appreciate any for of criticism if you have any! I love reviews!
"Good morning Min Young," a familiar male voice called out. "Looking as beautiful as ever this morning."
"Hello Ji-Hoon, how are you this morning?" Min Young replied, without turning around.
"How do you know it's me every time?" He laughed a little. "I guess I am flattered that is."
Min Young smiled to herself, as she dried off the cups that she had been washing when he had walked in. It had been the same routine every day, for the past month. Ji Hoon really was her regular, as he had shown up at the same time everyday, five minutes before her actual opening time. He would complement her as always, even if she still looked like she had just rolled out of bed, and would then always ask the same question.
"So Ms. Min Young, are you seeing anyone yet?" Ji Hoon asked in a sort of quiet tone. Min Young replied with a shake of her head, and he then cleared his throat to continue. "So then are you available for a date this evening?"
"Ji Hoon, you know my reply every time." Min Young chuckled.
"Yes, I know. But I figured if you have time to sleep on it, maybe, just maybe your mind would change."
Min Young smiled at him. It wasn't that he was ugly, poor, or a slob, she just wasn't in the mood to date anyone. Ji Hoon was actually quite handsome, and the first time he had asked her out, she was flattered. "Instead of always trying to ask me out, why don't you try going on some of those dates that your aunt keeps trying to set you up on?" She encouraged.
"My aunts ideal woman for me, is one whose only interest is in my money! I hate women like that." Ji Hoon gave a disgusted look. "I like someone like you who is hard working, knows what they want, and still beautiful at the same time! A true natural beauty!" He gave her a flirtatious wink.
"Thank you," Min Young blushed at the complements, as he had never gone this far to 'woo' her in the past. "I'm sorry Ji Hoon-"
"No apology needed," he stopped her. "Trust me Min Young, you will be mine one day, and I will treat the way you deserve to be treated!" He gave her a soft smile. "Now how about that coffee, I have to head to the office."
She stared at him blankly for a moment, and then shook her head. "Sorry!" She quickly went back to the coffee maker, and made his usual iced Americano togo.
"So what's your plan to get these shop owners to move?" Ha Joon asked in a worried tone.
Yu Han leaned back in his office chair and tapped his chin.
"You have no idea do you?" Ha Joon gave a huge sigh, and Yu Han remained silent. "How about you scope out the area, before posting a huge sign that will say, 'hey, time to go!'"
Yu Han gave him a look, and raised an eyebrow. "Maybe you're right, this is more of a delicate situation at hand, then I first thought it might be." He gave a sigh.
"That is because you never think!" Ha Joon scowled, "You always agree to fast and never take in the pros and cons."
Yu Han sighed heavily this time, and rubbed his temples. "Well I guess I have to go…undercover!"
"I'm sorry what?" Ha Joon scowled.
"You heard me assistant! Undercover work is needed for this sort of task at hand." Yu Han nodded. "I'll head down there for some lunch and check out the area for myself, and you will accompany me!"
"Sorry I will be staying here and watch over the office, like you should be doing! This whole thing is ridiculous!" Ha Joon gripped.
"Fine, a lone wolf must stand alone I suppose." Yu Han walked towards his window.
"Lone wolf…what a joke." Ha Joon hissed under his breath.
Min Young stared out the coffee shop window, and twirled the little stray hair from her bun, around her finger. This was the slowest part of the day, where people were either at school, or had already stopped by to get morning coffee before work. The only company she had was her reflection who stared back at her. Not many people came in for the lunch rush, as she only offered a couple of home-baked goodies. With a sigh Min Young leaned forward on the counter and scanned the temporarily empty tables, and stopped as she spotted crumbs on the top of a lone table in the left corner. With a huge grin, she proceeded towards the table to give it a thorough scrubbing.
With the menial labor out of the way, Min Young sat back in the chair that was placed at the table. It wasn't that business was bad at all, in fact she was exactly where she wanted to be, financially that is. Yet for the past week or two she has felt that something was missing, maybe some excitement, or family, which she seemed to be lack of both. She had grown up never knowing her mother, and losing her father at a very young age. Yet she did not grow up with a story of being a 'poor orphan,' in fact she was always under the protection of her grandfather, who kept himself at a distance. He had a fund that he frequently sent money too, to keep her safe and have a more than comfortable lifestyle. As a young child she had frequently asked her variety of caretakers, if her grandfather would ever come, but the answer was always the same. 'He loves you very much Min Young, but your grandfather is a very busy man.' Min Young let out another sigh, and realized as she snapped backed into reality that a customer had entered the shop. She quickly got up from her seat.
"Hello sir, please excuse my rudeness!" She bowed and retreaded to her counter, but noticed that the customer did not follow. "Sir?" Min Young turned towards him. Maybe he had a hearing problem, or he was deaf. She put on a smile and walked toward the table he had set himself at. "Is there anything I could get you?"
The gentleman looked at her with a bit of a squint, and then looked her up and down. Min Young struggled to keep her smile, and gritted her teeth.
"I'll have some…." He looked at the menu, and a disgusted look formed on his face. "Water will be fine waitress." He then turned his attention back to the window.
Min Young held her breath, to hold back the anger that she was about to unleash. Rude piece of sh- she took a deep breath. "Of course." She turned her back and walked back to the counter with clenched fists. After retrieving the water, she placed it on his table. "Please let me know if you need anything else." With no reply from the rude stranger, she sat back on her stool behind the counter.
After sitting there in a daze for another thirty minutes, she knew what was coming next. She called them the after lunch herd. It was the many business men who came right after lunch to grab coffees for their afternoon meetings, and some would even clean out her supplies of home-baked items. This was the time of day that she both loved and dreaded.
"5 Americanos togo!" Shouted a man as he entered into the coffee house.
"You got it!" Min Young yelled back, regaining the energy that had seemed forever lost.
Yu Han had entered the coffee shop, not to grab a mid afternoon cup of joe, but as a stake out place to check out the current occupants of the building he so desperately wanted. He had intended to only see the old folks, which Mr. Park had warned him about. Yet when he had entered into the coffee shop, he was shocked to see a young, and not bad looking, female running the establishment. He wasn't sure how to approach her, so he kept to himself until he had caught her attention. As much as he hated coffee, he couldn't just use the table and not drink anything, so his only alternative was to order water.
To be truthful, in all of what Yu Han considered great about himself, when it came to women, pretty women approaching him, he clamed up every time. It wasn't that he was scared of women; he just wasn't the best at first encounters. For some reason, they all found him to be a jerk or rude when they first met. It's not that he tries to be rude, he even remembers one woman saying that when she first met him at office, that he was very 'arrogant and rude sounding.' Yu Han slumped his shoulders and starred out the window, he really thought he was a genuine guy that any girl would like. He was an up and coming successful, young businessman, drove a nice car, and wasn't bad looking in the least. He scratched his head, but was then shaken by the loud man who barged into the coffee house ordering several Americanos. He gave him a dirty look, for ordering so loud, yet the woman behind the counter seemed overly thrilled by his request.
Yu Han studied the now energetic female barista. She wasn't overly gorgeous or anything, she wore a loose white blouse and blue jeans, with the majority of her hair in bun, aside from a few strays. Yet when he had seen her, her smiled looked forced, but now that she was behind the counter and making coffee, it was as if she had obtained another personality. It seemed soft, yet energetic. And her smile was- Yu Han blinked back into reality. How could he admire this girl! She was one of the occupants he needed to KICK OUT! He shook his head and turned his gaze back to the window to continue his 'stake out.'
For the past hour, Min Young had been swept away by orders coming in left and right. She loved it, and was sad when the mass collections of bodies began to thin out and eventually leave her alone once again. Min Young began to wipe down the counter, until she noticed that the same stranger from before was still sitting at his same table, looking out the window. With a frown, she approached the table once more. "Excuse me," She cleared her throat.
The stranger looked up at her, his eyes widening. "Y-yes?" he stuttered.
"Are you going to order anything?" She asked in an irritated voice.
"I did…" He starred back at her in confusion.
"Oh, maybe I didn't hear you before. What was it again?" She asked, with a look of embarrassment.
The stranger then pointed to the empty cup on his table. Min Young stared at the cup for several seconds, and looked back at him quickly.
"The water?" She asked.
He nodded in reply.
"That is…. complementary…..free….," She grinded her teeth.
"Oh is it," He looked around the shop for a moment. "I didn't know. You should consider putting that on a sign somewhere, maybe you would have more customers in here."
Min Young stared back at him in disbelief and shock. "What did you-"
The stranger smiled, "thank you very much. Here is a tip for you troubles. Put up a sign." He patted her shoulder and then walked out of the coffee shop.
Min Young couldn't move for several minutes. Her eyes darted around the room, and she giggled nervously. "Is this a prank?" She breathed heavily. "If I ever…see that… that JERK…I am gonna ring his sorry neck!" She screamed!
As Yu Han entered into his car, he pulled out his cell phone and called Ha Joon.
"Ha Joon," Yu Han said cheerfully.
"Hey Han, so how did it go?" Ha Joon replied over the speaker.
"Great!" Yu Han replied cheerfully, "Ill be back at the office soon." He then hung up the phone with a smile, and drove off.