Game Market 1983 - Chapter 59





“What are you thinking about?”

“Hmm? Oh, I’m just thinking about different storylines for my dating simulation game.”

“Really... You should relax every now and then. How can you be focused on work like that all day?”

“Should I call myself… a workaholic? Well, something like that.”

“Mmm~ Then can help you with the storyline?”

“What?”

“For writing a game storyline… I can introduce you to a scenario writer I know very well.”

“A scenario writer?”

“Yes, he’s working as a screenwriter for a drama.”

Of course, she’s interning as an intern writer for a broadcasting station. She should be familiar with a few people from that industry. But… I never really felt engaged to any show on the few occasions I watched television…

Korean dramas were much better in terms of content. Or adapting the story line from the game ‘White Memory’ which was dubbed the “White Drug” by erotic game enthusiasts was another option…

Wait a second… Korean dramas?

A drama that I used to thoroughly enjoy before my time slip popped into my head. Yes… I think that plot will be excellent. 

“Hello? Are you really leaving me hanging like this?”

“Sorry.”

“… I had high expectations for our date today…”

Yuki pretended to frown. 

“I love you.”

“What? Ah… If you suddenly say it like that then…”

Yuki had turned into a red tomato in response to my casual remark. I think I confessed to her without really meaning to.

&

The next day.

I arrived at the Shinjuku station again and turned around to see a tearful Yuki. She would always see me off whenever it was time for me to return to Kyoto. ‘

“When are you planning to visit again?”

“Mmm… I don’t know. But I’m going to be away next week.”

“Then will I be able to see you the week after? Where are you going next week?”

“I’m going to be in Korea for a short visit.”

“Korea?”

“I’ll leave next Friday and return on Sunday.”

“Hmm… When is your flight leaving?”

“It’s the 2 P.M flight from Osaka. Well, since Korea is right next to us, the flight should take around an hour or so.”

“I’ve never traveled abroad in my life; I’m jealous.”

Yuki was immensely envious as well when I went on my business trip to America… I pictured her beaming face again after receiving the photos that I promised to take for her.

Since I had a bit of time left before my train, we sat down in a nearby coffee shop to drink tea. At that moment, Yuki who had been wearing a gloomy expression when we were walking to the shop suddenly stared at me with an intense gaze and spoke.

“Let me go with you.”

“Hm? To Kyoto? Don’t you have work tomorrow?”

“No!! I mean to Korea!!”

“What did you say!?”

“I’ll buy my own ticket in Narita, so I’ll see you in Korea!!”

“Hey, wait a sec…”

“I really want to visit your home country, Mr. Junhyuk. I won’t burden you with any extra travel expenses. Let’s go together~ Please?”

In truth, I was traveling for business, but I was also planning to stop by my hometown as well. Yuki wouldn’t have much fun following me around…

However, looking at her fervent eyes, I knew there would be no point in stopping her.

“I’m not traveling to sightsee Yuki, is that okay with you?”

“Yes, I don’t care about sightseeing.”

“I’m going to meet up with a person from my hometown, so you won’t be able to go see any attractions.”

“Your hometown? That’s even better~!!”

… I inadvertently smiled after listening to her unpredictable reply. No, it was definitely something Yuki would say.

I locked my eyes with her for a moment before opening my mouth.

“Alright, we’ll go together.”

&

One week from that day.

I changed my ticket to the flight in Narita airport and arrived together with Yuki at the airport.

“Ah… I’m shaking. My heart’s been pounding since a while ago.”

“It’s nothing to stress about. The flight will only take around an hour. You don’t have to worry about anything Yuki.”

“I haven’t slept properly last night too. When I was in elementary school, I felt the same way the night before the school picnic… It’s been a long time since I felt this way…”

“... Do you want to take antiemetic pills?”

“I’ve already swallowed some.”

“You prepared thoroughly for sure…”

I smirked and patted her head after listening to her response. Every once in awhile, I would pet her like this because she was cute, and she would shut her eyes and act like a lively puppy.

Several minutes had passed.

After buying a few items from the department store inside the airport, our departure time was approaching.

“Aren’t we going to be late for our flight? We only have a few minutes left until departure!”

“It’s fine. It’ll take some time for everyone to board the plane; we can just be the last ones on.”

“But I still want to ride it now.”

Yuki pulled my arm and urged me on; she must’ve been nervous and excited before her first international trip. In the end, we boarded the plane as soon as the gates opened and were the first ones on the plane. A row of Korean stewardesses was lined up at the entrance greeting the passengers with a bright smile.

“Wow… Beautiful Korean ladies~!!”

Although Yuki was on the short side, she didn’t particularly lose to them in the looks department. But she started muttering under breath anyways while looking at them.

“They must’ve drunk a ton of milk when they were growing up…”

“Welcome aboard. I’ll help you with finding your seat.”

After we showed our tickets to a stewardess who extended one hand to us with a smile, she bowed and gestured us to the stairway.

“The business class seats are this way.”

“Thank you.”

Because it was a such a short flight I contemplated on flying economy, but I wanted Yuki to have a good first travel experience so I bought business class for us both. At that moment, I heard Yuki who had taken off her shoes asking the stewardess questions.

“Should I just carry my shoes like this?”

“.......”

Did she really believe the joke I told to her as a joke in Kyoto? The surrounding stewardesses all turned their heads and started giggling.

“Ah, you can keep your shoes on in the plane, mam.”

“What!?”

Yuki turned as red as a chili pepper after hearing the stewardess’s reply and sprinted up the stairs while holding her shoes.

“Oh, that lady is so cute~”

I walked away from the laughter and up the stairs to find Yuki who had sat down in the very back seat with her head buried in her arms.

“Um, Yuki…”

“Don’t talk to me right now. I’m dying from embarrassment~!!”

“No, I’m trying to say…”

“I told you, please don’t talk to me right now…”

“No… That’s not your seat. You can’t sit in any random seat.”

“Oh…”

She ended up moving to the seat that I pointed to and buried her face again.

“Are you mad?”

“No… I’m just flustered.”

“Sorry. I was teasing you in Kyoto because you asked me with such a serious expression. I didn’t know you’d actually believe it.”

“I don’t think I can look at those stewardesses in the face…”

“Don’t worry. There must be one or two people who ask that same question in every flight. It’s nothing to worry about.”

“Really?”

As I nodded my head after Yuki poked her head out to look at me, she finally began to look around.

“Wow… But there aren’t as many seats as I thought in an airplane? There is only space for 12 people here.

“Mmm… if you’re curious, you can go downstairs to see what it’s like.”

“Downstairs?”

She tilted her head in confusion and walked downstairs to inspect the situation there and came back to me with a surprised face.

“There’s a ton of people below us. The seats are closely packed together. Why is it so different from here?”

“You’ve ridden on a train before, right?”

“Yes.”

“You can think of our seats as the premium class in a train. Of course, the price is a bit more expensive as well.”

“By how much?’

“Compared to the economy seats below, it should be around 1.5 ~ 2 times more expensive?”

“Whaat!? You said our flight would only take around an hour.”

“Well, I’d rather travel with comfort. You see, the economy seats are way too narrow.”

“I’ve never sat in premium seats even on trains…”

“I’m paying for the tickets so you can just relax and enjoy the flight. We’ should be taking off soon.”

The speakerphone blared with an announcement the moment I finished my sentence.

-Ladies and gentlemen. Welcome aboard our flight with service from Narita to Kimpo, South Korea. We ask that you please fasten your seatbelts at this time and secure all baggage underneath your seat and in the overhead compartments. Thank you for choosing us. Enjoy your flight.-

After fastening her seatbelt, Yuki swallowed a ball of saliva and asked me a question.

“What does it feel like to take-off?”

“Mmm… It’s similar to a riding on a roller coaster. It’s pretty fun.”

“I hate roller coasters... “

At this point, our plane had arrived on the runway and began to speed up. Yuki extended her hand and spoke.

“Urhm… Can you hold my hand?”

I smiled at her cuteness and squeezed her hand.

And as the plane finally took off into the air, Yuki’s hands began trembling.

“We’re flying… What do I do…”

After a while, we could look below us to see Japan from a bird’s eye view.

“Wow….”

With the excitement that only a first-time plane rider could experience, Yuki squealed as she looked out the window. And as our plane rose above the clouds, a sea of white came into our view.

“I looked at the pictures that my co-workers showed me from their business trip, but it’s much prettier seeing this view in person.”

Yuki seemed to be rid of her nervous tension as she couldn’t take her eyes off the windows wearing a big smile on her face. Well, I had a similar reaction to her on my first plane ride too.

I rode on my first airplane when I was in middle school; the memory of going on a school-wide trip to Jeju island brought a smile to my lips as well.

Yuki had been staring out of the window for the entire hour-long plane ride, while occasionally snapping a few photos every few minutes. I felt this before, but she really did have a talent as a photographer. Even though she couldn’t immediately check the pictures right after she took them like a digital camera could, she’d been diligently recording her pictures on the film canister.

And an announcement for landing came on.

&

Yuki’s first impressions after safely landing at the Kimpo airport was…

“Eurgh… it’s freezing here. Is Korea always this cold?”

Unlike the Narita airport, there wasn’t a direct tunnel way that connected the passengers to the plane in the Kimpo airport. Instead, a stairway extender would be latched on to the plane for the passengers to get off.

The temperature contained the chilly frost of the period between late February and March. Yuki was trembling as she gripped on to her light coat.  Korea was a little colder than Japan after all. I took out a scarf from my bag and wrapped it around her neck.

“I forgot to tell you that it’s cold in Korea at this time of the year. You should feel better with this around you. The terminal bus that’ll take us to the airport should be coming soon so wait just a little more!”

“Thank you.”

After completing the long and tedious landing inspection, we stepped out of the departure hall to find the Kimpo airport buzzing with foreigners.

-Harmony and Progress! The world comes to Seoul!-

Seeing the familiar 1988 Olympic slogan plastered all over the place finally made me feel like I was truly back in Korea.  


 





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