Since the brief encounter with Taeyeon at the company, Jessica had been trying to contact Taeyeon but was often brushed away with excuses such as she was busy. Previously when Taeyeon was busy, she would still make the effort to contact Jessica at every opportunity she had. However, this wasn’t the case in recent weeks.
Whenever they got together, Taeyeon’s mind would seem preoccupied. Jessica’s frustrations grew as she realised she couldn’t get Taeyeon’s full attention whenever they were together. It was difficult to find a time to meet up, yet the singer appeared so indifferent.
Soon, the couple started arguing over small matters. At times, Taeyeon would end the phone call abruptly and sometimes it was Jessica who did so. Most of the time, their conversations tended to end up with someone flaring up or being frustrated with the other.
At a music award show, Taeyeon’s senior, Kwon Yuri was concerned over Taeyeon’s restless behaviour. Yuri was from the same company as Taeyeon and had debuted earlier than her. They were seated at a round table while watching the program at the awards show.
“Taeyeon, what’s wrong with you?” Yuri asked in a hush tone.
“Ah, just tired,” Taeyeon replied listlessly. She played with the napkin on the table before rubbing her eyes in boredom.
“Try to pay attention to the awards. There are many cameras around and you wouldn’t want them to capture you with a bored looking face. It wouldn’t be good for your image. You should behave properly at such a public event,” Yuri advised.
“Thanks for the reminder Yuri sunbaenim, I’ll take note.”
Taeyeon shifted in her seat and sat upright. She looked at the stage, trying to focus her attention on the presenters and singers. Though Taeyeon was physically present, her mind was elsewhere thinking about a particular songwriter and their relationship. She didn’t know where their relationship was heading or how long she could keep it under wraps from her company’s management and the public eye. Should she come clean and admit it to her fans? Should they continue to date in the dark and hope none of the paparazzi would catch them? Many questions popped up in her head and she was struggling to find answers to each one of them.
Time flew by and it was time for Taeyeon to prepare to release a mini album again. Since the partnership with Jessica was so successful in the last album, the company decided to work with the songwriter again.
However, this time, it didn’t turn out as smoothly as expected as there was already a rift in Taeyeon and Jessica’s relationship.
One afternoon, Taeyeon, Jessica, Minjoon and the producer met at the company’s meeting room. They spent hours looking through the song sheets and listening to the demos of each song in order to determine which ones should be part of the new album.
During a break, Minjoon and the producer left the room, leaving the singer and the songwriter alone. The atmosphere turned awkward, as if the room had suddenly froze and became an ice chamber. Taeyeon brushed her fingers through her hair and stood up abruptly.
“The song is bad. We can’t use this in the next album,” Taeyeon grunted frustratedly. She pointed at the stacks of paper on the table.
“Why? I think the melody suits your voice. We just need to fine tune the lyrics,” Jessica defended, looking at the singer.
“No, no, no. It isn’t there. Something’s missing. I don’t get the feel of the song. Did you put your heart and soul into writing this song?”
Jessica stared at Taeyeon incredulously. “Of course! What do you mean by that? I’ve always put in a lot of effort and taken pride in all the songs I’ve written.”
Now, Jessica stood up, meeting Taeyeon eye to eye.
Taeyeon raised her voice. “You think you’re great just because you’ve written several hit songs. You think you’re in demand because the last title song you wrote for me stayed on the charts for weeks.”
“What? Taeyeon, are you serious? Why are you saying such hurtful things?” Jessica was puzzled and worried at the same time. She could feel tears welling up in her eyes.
“I used to think that we are the perfect couple, complementing each other in our passions for singing and songwriting but now I seriously doubt it!”
Taeyeon stormed out of the studio, leaving a visibly stunned songwriter standing rooted at her spot. Jessica was very upset with Taeyeon’s hurtful comments.
When Minjoon got back to the room, he saw a tear stained Jessica sitting at the table, staring blankly at the sheets of paper in front of her. Taeyeon was nowhere in sight. Just a few minutes ago, he received a text message from Taeyeon saying that she had something to attend to and had to leave. Putting the pieces together, it didn’t take a genius to figure out what had just happened. His heart turned soft at the sight of the sobbing girl and he decided to explain the reasons behind Taeyeon’s erratic behaviour.
After such a long time, Jessica finally found out the truth behind Taeyeon’s cold behaviour. Their relationship had been exposed and Taeyeon had been trying to keep it under wraps while hiding it from her company. Minjoon was the only one who knew about their relationship and kept it a secret. He had also been trying to fend off the reporters who had been trying to dig out more evidences about the secret romance. It was increasingly difficult to keep their relationship a secret.
All this while, Taeyeon didn’t tell Jessica anything as she didn’t want the songwriter to worry. Jessica felt very bad for not understanding the situation and for accusing Taeyeon of trying to brush her off with silly excuses at times. She should have guessed there was a deeper meaning to Taeyeon’s odd behaviour. Now, a huge burden had been placed on her shoulders. It was up to her to deal with it.
Three days later, Jessica arranged for Taeyeon to meet her at park near Taeyeon’s company. It was a quiet place and since not many people would chose to go to a park in the middle of the afternoon.
The songwriter wore a pair of sunglasses and was sitting on a bench under the shade of a huge tree. Taeyeon sensed something was not right when she saw the grim expression on Jessica’s face as she approached.
A weak smile appeared on Jessica’s face as she rose from the bench to greet Taeyeon.
“This is a rather unusual place to meet in the middle of the afternoon,” Taeyeon asked. She was mindful of their presence in public and made a mental note not to reach out to hold the songwriter’s hand as she would normally do when they were alone.
“Let’s break up,” Jessica said firmly.
Taeyeon merely stared straight at Jessica, momentarily lost for words. To be honest, this scene had been playing in her head for the past few weeks. She had a feeling one of them would initiate a breakup soon. Though she had been bracing herself for it, Taeyeon couldn’t accept the fact that it actually happened.
“We should end this relationship. We aren’t happy together anymore. Our relationship has changed, Taeyeon ah. It isn’t the same before and would not be the same ever again.”
“There’re bound to be arguments among couples. It’s something very common. We don’t have to break up because of this,” Taeyeon retorted.
“I don’t think I can continue working with you anymore. Perhaps you’ll find a better songwriter, someone who can produce the type of music you want and bring your career to a greater height.”
“Sooyeon, if you’re upset by the comments I made a few days ago, I’m truly sorry. I said it in a moment of frustration. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”
“I can’t take this anymore. We can’t even have a proper date in public like other couples. We have to be on our guard all the time. This isn’t healthy. It’s taking a strain on me. I…I can’t go on this like anymore, Taeyeon ah.”
The words that poured out of Jessica’s mouth stung but Taeyeon knew what Jessica said was true. It was a plead from the songwriter. She couldn’t give Jessica what she wanted; a normal relationship like other couples. She couldn’t even express her love for the songwriter openly. Jessica would always have to hide in the dark, be the ‘behind the scene’ type of girlfriend.
“Thank you for everything. I wish you all the best. Goodbye Taeyeon ah,” Jessica said sadly, a heavy feeling welling up in her heart. She balled up her fist, trying to keep her emotions under control.
Taeyeon’s mind was as blank as a sheet of white paper. She didn’t know what to say. She only knew that whatever she said or do wouldn’t make Jessica stay. She knew she had to let her go despite the pain in her heart. Letting her go would be the only way Jessica would be happy.
Jessica turned around to leave, trying to prevent the singer from seeing the tears that were threatening to spill from her eyes. She pushed the sunglasses up her nose and walked away.
“Sooyeon ah, you must be happy. Live life to the fullest and be happy, always,” Taeyeon called out.
Jessica stopped in her track briefly. Her heart ached terribly and it felt like someone had reached into her body and ripped her heart into pieces. She wanted so much to turn back and hug the singer, knowing that the singer was probably also heartbroken. However, she knew she had to walk away. It was the only choice she could take right now.
“Although I’m not qualified to say this, there must be someone who can give you happiness,” Taeyeon added.
Jessica swallowed her tears.
“Even so, I still love you,” Jessica muttered to herself before she walked away.
As if the Heaven was feeling the pain of the couple, it began to drizzle. Taeyeon watched the songwriter walk away, the back view of her ex-lover getting smaller and smaller until she disappeared out of her sight.
The passing drizzle stopped shortly but there was nothing to conceal the tears that were cascading down her face. Taeyeon didn’t bother to wipe them away. She didn’t care if anyone saw her in this state as nothing could heal the pain in her heart. It was a painful goodbye, one which she would probably never say hello again.
One year later…
Jessica received a text message from Taeyeon out of the blue. The singer wanted to inform her of a song she had written and that it was dedicated to her and told her to watch a specific music program in which she would be performing that song.
Taeyeon learnt from Minjoon that Jessica had gone back to the States for a break and was back in Seoul during her promotional period. She was determined to get her message across to Jessica and hopefully Jessica would reply.
Turning on the television apprehensively, Jessica sat in front of the LED screen and waited. She saw the singer appearing on stage, dressed in a cream coloured knitted sweater and white skirt.
Words that my heart says
I love you more than myself
I want to love you
The one word that you draw inside of me
The one word that is always hidden inside of me
I’m looking at you, I’m always by your side
But I can’t say the words I love you
The lyrics of the song called out to her and she knew it must have been painful for Taeyeon to pen those heartfelt words. She saw the anguish in Taeyeon’s eyes when the singer was belting out the sad ballad. Unknowingly, tears started to roll down her cheeks as she hugged her pillow while watching the performance.
Jessica picked up her phone, contemplating if she could reply Taeyeon’s message. Fingers hovered above the keyboard for a few seconds but nothing was typed. Jessica threw the phone on the table and buried her face into the pillow as the lyrics of the song played in her head.
A year later…
It was the end of an episode of a Korean drama on television and the preview for the next episode was being telecast. When Jessica heard the faint song being played at the end of the drama, it sent shivers through her body. She knew that voice by heart and was certain she knew who the singer was.
True enough, the following day, Jessica received a text message from Taeyeon. The singer informed her that she had written the song for the popular drama’s OST and that the full song would be released in three days’ time. She told Jessica to listen out for her song in tomorrow’s episode of the drama. Though they had broken up for two years, Taeyeon still couldn’t erase the memories they shared. She was certain Jessica hadn’t changed her mobile number and was determined to get her message across to the songwriter.
The one person who can’t see me though I am looking
The one person who can’t hear me though I am calling
Do you even remember me?
Do you even think of me?
Just once, please
That one person, you
You are my only love
My heart can’t let you go
Just as much as I love you
Each minute and each second hurts so much
When Jessica heard the song, she was pleased to know that Taeyeon’s songwriting skill had improved over the past two years. This song, though not a title song, was among the top of the digital charts for a few weeks when it was released.
Once again, Jessica merely congratulated Taeyeon on the success of her album and avoided all other contact with the singer. She wasn’t prepared to go through another heartbreak, knowing that it was impossible for them to be together.
Three years later, since they broke up…
Jessica was out shopping when she noticed a fan sign at one of the stores in the mall. There was a huge crowd gathered outside the store, with people holding fan boards and cameras. Some of them were standing on foldable chairs while others were trying to squeeze to the front of the crowd to get a better look inside the store.
As Jessica walked past the lift lobby that was a few metres away from the store, she spotted someone familiar. The person paused her in steps and looked at Jessica, a smile slowly forming on her face. Jessica’s heart skipped a beat when their eyes met for a brief moment. She was surprised the person could make her heart flutter even after three years.
Despite the numerous fans that were gathered at the mall, Taeyeon noticed Jessica among the crowd the moment she stepped out of the lift. Her eyes had been trained to look for Jessica at such events since their break up. She had hoped that Jessica would turn up and give her support besides the rare text messages Jessica sent.
Taeyeon was ecstatic to see Jessica again after such a long time. However, when she shifted her sight to the person standing next to Jessica, she was disheartened. A tall handsome man was standing next to Jessica and Jessica was pushing a pram. It felt like someone hurled a huge rock at her glass heart and it shattered into a million pieces instantly.
Taeyeon wished she could be the one who brought her happiness. Though her heart sank, Taeyeon was happy to know that Jessica found her happiness in the end. The happy family scene brought a closure for her. It was then she knew that it was time to let go of the past and move on.
Taeyeon wrote neatly on the piece of yellow note.
Taeyeon & Sooyeon. Together forever.
She glanced at the note again, her heart filled with warmth. She said a prayer before tying up the note and handing it from one of the branches on the tree.
[End of flashback]
Minjoon gave Taeyeon a nudge, causing the singer to break out of her trance. Taeyeon flashed a warm smile at Jessica before she was escorted into the store by security officers.
“Sooyeon,” a male voice called.
Jessica didn’t realised that she had been so focused on Taeyeon that she had neglected her companions.
“Would you like to wait around and catch the singer? She’s quite popular.”
“No. Dong Wook oppa, let’s go home.” With a heavy heart, Jessica pushed the pram and walked away from the store as quickly as she could.
After Dong Wook placed the sleepy boy in the cot, he made two glasses of iced barley tea and sat in the living room with Jessica.
“Sooyeon, you’re young and beautiful. Why don’t you want to get married?”
“Because the good ones like Oppa are taken,” Jessica replied cheekily.
“Don’t say such things. I’m sure there’re other deserving candidates around. Lower your standards a little perhaps.”
“Why is Oppa trying to push me to get married? You mean a single woman can’t be your son’s Godmother?”
“No, I’m not hinting at that. My wife and I are worried about you. You’ve lived alone for so long. It’s always good to have a companion by your side.”
“I’m not a kid anymore, Oppa. I can live well by myself. There’s nothing to worry about.”
Dong Wook shrugged his shoulders. He clearly wasn’t convinced by Jessica’s reply and it was obvious to him that something was bothering her after the fan sign at the mall. Jessica was behaving oddly since leaving the mall.
“Is there something wrong, Sooyeon? You seem a little out of sorts since we got back from the mall,” Dong Wook asked with concern.
“Nothing’s wrong. I’m fine. I’ll go home now.” Jessica rose from the couch and prepared to leave.
“Did something trigger a memory of a past relationship? I recalled seeing this same depressed look a few years ago.”
Jessica became moody. Memories of her relationship with Taeyeon came flooding her mind. She fought to hold her tears back. “You don’t know what happened three years ago. It wasn’t her fault. I caused the farewell, I said goodbye!”
Realising Taeyeon was Jessica’s ex-lover, Dong Wook pulled Jessica into a hug, letting the girl release her pent-up emotions by soaking up his tee with her tears. “Sorry, I shoudn’t have brought a painful past up. As your friend, I’m always here for you.”
Throughout the years since they broke up, Jessica had been silently supporting Taeyeon. She would turn up at music shows, fan signs and other events whenever she could spare the time. However, she would ensure that she was dressed casually and always wore a hoodie or scarf so that Taeyeon wouldn’t be able to recognise her easily. However, as time went on, Jessica told herself that she should try to stay away from such events in order to forget Taeyeon. She kept reminding herself she shouldn’t hold onto an impossible dream.
Taeyeon, likewise, had been hoping to see Jessica. She had chosen the path of being a singer and was fulfilling her dream. Yet at the same time, she wanted to be with Jessica. She was selfish and wanted the best of both worlds. Once in a while, she broke down in tears when she was alone in her apartment while reminiscing about the past. Her only way of remembering Jessica was via song writing. It was the something which comforted her and probably the only thing she could hold onto which reminded her of her days with the songwriter.
The incident at the mall was a coincidence. Perhaps it was Heaven’s way of getting the star-crossed lovers to meet and giving them a closure so that they could move on with their lives.
Baby, never ever say it again – how can we be over?
The past times and memories with you are painfully rising
I try to write lyrics for the first time in a while and I go outside
It seemed like a festival out there – I stopped to see some pretty and cute cards
I thought of you and I bought the prettiest one but
I’m filled with regrets because I can’t even send it to you
Words that can’t ever touch you are just sitting on top of my desk for the past few days
I really thought of going to see you today, getting some courage
But still, I don’t have the heart to do it in case you’re still angry so I stop
Apart from my true feelings, I can’t even do this or that
Memories of long ago, please give me strength
I can’t let you go like this, please don’t leave me
I love you, I love you – Like a habit, you said that to me
I still can’t understand – no way, no way, no way
You said that without me, you felt like you would die alone
But your cold heart keeps telling me good bye
Good bye, good bye, good bye
Don’t say good bye, good bye, good bye
= THE END =
1st Year : Audio – Taeyeon – “Love, That One Word”
2nd Year : Official MV – Jessica “That One Person, You”
Ending song : Official MV – Miryo featuring Sunny “I Love You”
Pictures credit godspeller369
Story is inspired by TIC Cheng’s FMV TaeSsica Story – Goodbye
A/N: This story is inspired by the FMV and fan edits by godspeller369. It is my first time writing a story which incorporates at least 1 fan edited picture and 1 song per chapter and it has been a good way to challenge myself. A PDF of the story would be available next week.