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University life had been a really good and interesting experience for Jae, he spent a lot of time here, mostly in the library, studying and just surrounding himself with information. Jae felt like since he came to Evermore a lot had changed for him, learning to live alone had been an adjustment at first because he had to do his own laundry and dishes, food didn't make itself so he had to learn to make sure he always had something to eat and while he was practically living at Han's now, he definitely felt like that independence had a good effect on him.
But the study was also important to him, he got the freedom to explore his writing and how to expand it, to completely immerse himself in stories and their meanings and generally feel like he was connected with something he had always had a natural talent for. There was a lot of pressure to do well of course, that was the nature of the way he was raised but he finally felt like he had some independence from his parents and the ability to make decisions for himself. So he did his best not to waste the opportunity and use as much of his education as he could, so if there were extra classes he could take or further study he could do, he tended to try and indulge in it. Not to the level where he didn't have a life outside of university but he could definitely be found in the library till late.
It was about 3 pm in the afternoon and he didn't have any late classes today so he was wandering the aisles of the library looking for some stories to analyse for one of his papers, except he wasn't able to decide which one he wanted to use and so he had about 7 books stacked up in his arms ready to carry back to his table in the hopes of being able to pick one out after reading a few pages of each. He had just managed to balance all of them steadily enough to make his way back to the table and took a deep breath as he started the walk.
But of course, his clumsiness was something that no matter how hard he tried he couldn't shake and he didn't see the petite girl coming in the other direction before it was too late. With how tiny she was Jae didn't even realize there was anyone there until his stack of books went flying and he tripped over one of them until he found himself on the floor, rubbing his head because he whacked it against the shelf on the way door and then noticing the young female who had totally just ran into "Oh my god, I am so sorry, I probably should have realized that a bunch of books and this generally unbalanced guy wouldn't work but" he pulled an apologetic expression as he looked back at her.
She was excited to see his picture and confirm it herself if he was really all that just like what Jae had described him as. Of course, Taealha knows beauty is subjective and to her, everyone is just as beautiful in their own way but she could also be nosy to see her new friend's boyfriend too. Just like anyone else. When he showed her both pictures to represent both demeanor, the human gaped and covered her mouth with her hand, shamelessly gawking at him. "You were not exaggerating at all…" because he was both cute and sexy. "Are you sure he's the same person though? How could someone have this much duality? Are you certain he doesn't have a twin or something?" She continued to gush over him and slapping his shoulders playfully, saying how lucky.
"Keep going, reach for the moon or the stars and maybe you'll end up finding yourself seated in a rocket" she advised, it's always nice to dream as big as you could, so that even if you fall short to it, it would still be a big achievement. Taealha wasn't choosy when it comes to the company she'd have but girls would probably do it better than guys, considering all the guys she has been with has been a total bust. "I think the better question is to ask whether I have a celeb I don't crush over, I swear I drool over a lot of celebs…" she doesn't even try to hide that she squeals silently or fangirled on her own watching models walk the runway. "Who doesn't have their own annoying quirks right? I think that's why it makes it worthwhile… God that sounds so cute, I'm jealous of you" she playfully glared at him and crossed her arms, how she wished she had someone like that too.
When he pointed out jokingly how she couldn't be a housewife, she pressed her lips to form a pout and nod, "Pretty much… I'll leave the cooking to my significant other so let's hope I find someone who can cook better than me." Or they could eat out, that works too. "An epic love… better place your bets in Jae, I'm gonna get that person one day and you should pick up a clock to time how long it takes for me to get them" she giggled. She rolled over the bean bag and pointed to her tummy, "I'm hungry… we should go eat something…"
Jae had an excited expression on his face as he proudly showed Taealha the photos he had of Han, it wasn’t exactly a secret that the dhampir was proud of the man he had chosen to call his boyfriend and he enjoyed getting to show him off “Not that I know of...I would be very offended if it turned out there was really two of them all along” he giggled shaking his head when Taealha slapped against his shoulders “I am lucky” he murmured softly, he felt it every time he was with Han, he couldn’t believe how lucky he was to have someone like him, someone who supported him wholly and looked like a model that just walked off a cat walk.
It felt nice to have someone who he had just met encourage him to reach for his dreams, he had been faced with a lot of nos and you’ll never make its before that sometimes it felt disheartening to tell someone what he wanted to do “I hope so...I don’t know why but it feels like this is what I’m supposed to do” it all felt so natural to him, writing, coming up with stories and characters, he enjoyed it a lot. “Damn...do you not even keep a top 50 list?” he laughed softly, everyone had a list like that right? Even if they only had it in their mind, Jae could list at least 20 celebrities off the top of his mind that he liked. He blushed slightly when she glared at him, he wasn’t trying to make her jealous “We have to find you someone before you end up shooting me with those lasers” he pointed towards her eyes and laughed softly.
“So cooking needs to be added to the required list” he teased and nodded pretending to take notes as though he was making a list of what she needed for her ideal type. Jae propped his hand under his chin when she asked him to make a bet about when she would meet her epic love “I’m going to be optimistic and guess within 6 months you’re going to meet someone who makes your heart flutter like never before” he grinned playfully. When she said she was hungry he raised his brow and realized a lot of time had passed, he looked down at his watch and smiled “If you like Korean food I think there was supposed to be a street market tonight in the city square, we could check it out” he could definitely use some food.
Both Han and Jae are attractive, nobody would be able to refute that even if you would say beauty is subjective. While Jae looks like an ethereal man who just came straight out of CGI, Han looks like the type of high school crush you always find at some point of your life, the guy who didn't know he was even popular. "I mean if there are two of them, I might have asked you to introduce me to the other twin" she teased, who wouldn't like a looker? Especially when Jae seemed to rave about his good personality too. That's killing two birds with one stone. "Ugh I'm jealous… you two look good together, two equally good looking people with what? Heart of gold? That's not fair. You can't be both good looking and kind hearted… that doesn't work. If you take all of that, then what is left for the rest of humanity?" Was she being dramatic about it? Very much so.
It was nice to see someone reach for their dreams, she had been in that spot too, "Go for it, never forget your own motivation. And most importantly, don't do it for others… do it for yourself. That way your motivation would have a scrape if anything happens. I get the feeling, I'm only here because of my full scholarship" and it wasn't easy to get it either. She had to really study hard and graduate not just in the first class but to also be awarded the summa cum laude title. "I probably should've stopped the moment I finished my bachelor's degree but since I was already working at a lab, I thought increasing my qualifications to masters would be a good opportunity." It was surprising to hear she doesn't even keep a list of the people she's attracted to. "I mean… if you asked me to lost top 50 people then maybe I could" she blushed, plenty of them are really ones she could name.
"Yes please, find me someone. I don't mind blind dates but… I want to find someone who doesn't end up trying to get into my pants on the first date please." It was tiring when she came across those people. "If my partner could cook for me, I will forever love them honestly…" When Jae guessed 6 months, the human scrunched up her nose and scoffed playfully, "Sure. And if I don't, what are you willing to bet, hm? Let's make a bet, I'm ready for anything… as long as it does not require me having to harvest my organ." Her eyes automatically lit up at the mention of the street market, "It's been a while since I've had Korean… come on, let's get there before others do. I'm not in the mood to queue." She had already grabbed a hold of his hands, pulling him up with her.
He laughed softly when she said she might ask to be introduced if Han had a twin “He really is handsome huh?” Jae blushed slightly, he always noticed the way people would stare at Han when they passed on the streets as though they couldn’t believe someone could look like that “Oh come on, I’m sure we have things that balance us out...I mean I’ve never been great at academics, much to my father’s dismay” he commented and shrugged “Though Han is really smart so I can see your point when it comes to him” Han had his own flaws too though, they just weren’t things he was going to expose to someone who didn’t even know him. “Besides...you check the pretty and smart box and you don’t seem like the mean type either” he commented thoughtfully.
He nodded slightly when she told him to keep reaching for his dream “Honestly my main motivation is just to...not have to go back to live with my parents” he spoke softly and pressed his lips together “I have to work hard enough so I can be independent from them” his father was someone who would always have control over his life if not and he knew that would be damaging to his happiness. “A full scholarship is amazing though, you must have worked really hard to get it” he was honestly a little envious because he would never be the person smart enough to get one “It sounds more like you actually enjoy studying” he commented thoughtfully and grinned slightly. Jae raised his brows and grinned “Well at least give me a few names, I’m curious now” he teased softly.
Jae wrinkled his nose slightly when she said a lot of people tried to sleep with her on the first date “Hardly a way to make a good impression” he commented and shook his head slightly, it had never really occurred to the dhampir that you would try to use someone like that but he supposed he was more of a hopeless romantic “So someone who can cook...pretty….and doesn’t want to sleep with you on the first date” he commented and chuckled, it didn’t seem impossible to find someone like that. “How about dinner then, whoever loses has to buy the other one dinner at a fancy restaurant” perhaps he was just really hungry right now because before long they were heading out of the secret study place to head out towards the market “What’s your favorite food?” he questioned curiously.
She gave him a look that said ‘duh, have you seen him?’ and shrugged, “I mean, you’re not one to talk about handsome, you wake up and look in the mirror every morning before going to class. No way you didn’t notice any detail on yourself” she teased, Jae is really a looker, if Han was handsome then she wasn’t sure how to classify the male before her. When he told her they had things to balance them out and mentioned how he wasn’t particularly good at academics, Taealha raised her eyebrows in amusement, “I’d say you’re doing pretty well in your major though, no? Don’t you think so?” She, on the other hand, does pride herself on her academic achievements. After all, she did work her ass off to get that spot on the team and had scholarships helping her get this far in her studies.
Since she’s an orphan, she didn’t have anyone to sponsor her studies nor invest in her, until she caught the eye of the faculty board and was granted plenty of scholarships in exchange for her good grades. “So Han is smart too huh? What does he do?” Now she’s curious. She couldn’t hedge a guess on what field he dabbles in when she saw his picture. He looks artistic but plenty of people do too. The blush on her cheeks was evident upon hearing his compliment, to which she cupped her face in response, “Thanks, well… a pretty face won’t cut it, right? I’m an orphan so I have to be smart if I want to retain those scholarships… I have no motive to be mean, mute remember?” she made the gesture to say she’s mute. She nodded in understanding when he said he didn’t want to go back to living with his parents, “Hard work never betrays you” she reassured him with a soft pat. “I started being interested in biochemistry when I was 16, and it stuck ever since.”
When he asked for a few names, the blush deepened and she cleared her throat shyly before covering her face and throwing herself against the bean bag, shaking her head, “I’ll turn into a whole tomato, I’ll type it instead later…” she couldn’t be serious if she tried to sign them. The human was too used to frat boys and others alike trying to get into her pants before they even established anything, but the female had needs too so she went along with it most of the time. Still, a girl like her longs for a relationship too. “I guess good for them I have needs too” she shrugged absentmindedly. “No? It doesn’t sound too hard to find right?” She didn’t think she was setting that high of a standard honestly.“Fine, a dinner at a fancy restaurant, I can do that, not that I’d lose” she stuck out her tongue playfully and headed out with him, pondering to herself for a bit when he asked what her favorite food was. “Thai. I like spicy things. But I have this insane obsession with Fish and Chips… oh and Shepherd’s Pie. You?”
Jae gave a somewhat embarrassed laugh when she said he was handsome and explained it by saying he must notice himself in the mirror “I try my best” he commented in a shy tone, he tried to make himself look good because he liked it when Han complimented his looks and also because he would be seen alongside his boyfriend and he wanted everyone to know that yes, Han was his. “You wouldn’t believe the amount of people who ask us if we’re brothers” he grumbled slightly, that was frustrating for the dhampir. “Well I’m still getting started but...I’d like to think I’m good at what I chose” he nodded slightly, he was still undecided about how he wanted that to translate to a job though.
“I’ll bet you’re probably like top of your class too right?” she commented and raised his brows, she seemed like the type who was very capable at her studies. “He’s a vet, or technically he’s a vet student on his study year but I swear he knows everything there is to know about animals” he was so loving when it came to them too so it was the perfect job for him. Jae often felt very behind when it came to Han but he always needed to remind himself that the star was much older than him. “It seems like both of us are on a mission to prove something to the world” he responded and smiled softly, he was sure she was a very hard worker and she had earned everything she had, he hoped to be able to do that too, he wanted to be known for his work ethic rather than what money he had to throw around.
“Why biochemistry?” he asked curiously wondering if there was something that made her so interested in it, scientific roles tended to be inspired by a desire to understand something after all. He laughed when she hid her face against the bean bag and refused to answer some of her celebrity crushes, he scrunched his nose and grinned “I like Blake Lively a lot, she’s gorgeous” he commented and bit his lip slightly, most of his celebrity crushes were women actually. “It shouldn’t be too hard to find...but then I’ve never really looked” Han just ended up falling into his lap after all.
He smiled when she answered her favorite foods which made him chuckle “It sounds like you secretly want to be British” he teased slightly as they headed through to the market, surrounded by the stalls around them “Well you can’t go wrong with Kimchi, I swear I eat everything with it” he commented and chuckled “But you could also get me to sell my soul for a good steak” he teased playfully.
When he said something about people often mistaking them as brothers, she couldn't hold in her snort, of course that would happen. Why is she even surprised? "Maybe a bit of PDA would tell them they're wrong" she teased, assuming both parties were fine with that. But something tells her that Jae likes the affection, whether he's the giver or the receiver. "If you're good at what you choose then it should be fine, it's nice to translate your passionate hobby into your work, who wouldn't want that? Getting paid for doing what you like" it can be pressuring sometimes, she knows that firsthand, getting the same experience when she first started a little over last year in the lab. She was promoted to junior associate this year and was almost finishing her master's degree, perhaps after this she could dabble in more. There were so many restrictions back at the lab, which does make her wonder what goes on sometimes.
She nodded enthusiastically when asked if she was top in her class, "Top in the batch too, actually, I pride myself in that." To Taealha, it's better to be proud of yourself, because nobody is going to do it for you and she intends to live her best life feeling nice about herself. She swore her eyes lit up instantly because veterinarian sounds like a hard occupation that takes a lot of skills because you're dealing with live animals. "It must be a tiring one… but I imagine he gets to befriend a lot of animals we could only imagine to see, huh? Has he worked with… bigger animals?" Taealha knows she didn't sacrifice a lot just to get the bare minimum, she won't settle for that easily.
"I'm a chemistry nerd, for starters. When I was in the orphanage, my birthday present was a book on Carl Neuberg. People called him the father of modern biochemistry. It started off as an innocent interest but then I realized I was curious about the molecular processes that go on in our body, it's a fascinating thing… like regeneration." Or in other words, that's the reason why she studied about the supernaturals. Though admittedly, she didn't try to go out her way with an identification device the Organisation provided, if they want to maintain their privacy then she'll respect it. Doesn't mean she's naive about it.
"Blake Lively is gorgeous… I remember having this massive crush on Eiza Gonzalez. She's so hot." She could name a few, not all of course. It doesn't surprise her that most of her celebrity crushes tend to be females, she knew she liked them since a while ago and she could always appreciate a beauty. "Perhaps I secretly do wish to become one" she giggled, "but it's really because I like potatoes… a lot." Kimchi is a staple for Koreans, even she had a few stored back home, though she could never really make her own because she's a bad cook. She dragged him to one of the stalls that was selling spicy rice cakes or most commonly known as tteokbokki in Korean. "What Korean doesn't know how to eat spicy, right?"
He laughed, noting her suggestion with a nod of his head “Maybe, though people like to be...judgemental at times” he commented, almost in a sad manner because he just wanted to be happy with his boyfriend but instead had to worry about what people might whisper about or the stares “PDA kinda makes me uncomfortable in general anyway” clearly she was different though from the way she suggested it so casually. He smiled softly “Well I really hope I can make something of it, one way or another, but there’s never any guarantee, need to keep working hard” he nodded, he was aware the field he was going into was highly competitive and it might turn out to be fruitless, but Jae wasn’t the type to give up.
He widened his eyes and grinned when she modestly spoke about her achievements and being top in her batch, having been through the education system recently he knew that was no easy feat “You must have been an amazing study to pull all that off” which was no offhand comment, he knew full well how hard it was to maintain good grades. Jae nodded slightly “Lately he’s been working pretty closely with the local animal reserve, he’s got to work with….so many different animals” he grinned slightly “He does a lot of health checks for the animals...tigers...I think even an elephant” it definitely seemed like there were new surprises every day.
He smiled, he could tell just from the way her eyes lit up and her voice got a little faster as she spoke that she was really passionate about her studies “Is there something you hope to discover during all your work?” she seemed like someone who could further her field in some way if she was continuing her studies further. She seemed really smart but also level-headed, he didn’t get a know-it-all vibe from her like he did with some intelligent people.
He grinned slightly when she confessed she had a big crush on Eiza Gonzalez “So you’ve got a thing for the dark-haired confident types huh?” he raised his brows and grinned slightly, many others along the same vein come to mind “I can see why, confidence really is sexy” especially for those who might edge more on the submissive line, they enjoyed being around people that could take the situation into their own hands. “Who doesn’t like potatoes?” he commented and raised his brows, he didn’t think he could name a single person honestly. Before long though, they were in line for a Korean tteokbokki stall “The smell of spicy food always reminds me of home” he commented as he headed up the line and when they got there, ordered himself some food.
Taealha scrunched her nose up and huffed. She has definitely moved past caring what people thought about her, as long as she’s not the one purposely being at fault there. “People can be so nosy sometimes, don’t mind them, as long as you two are happy with what you’re doing and is still considered legal, then there’s no wrong in wanting to enjoy.” But she never had a lasting relationship anyway, not yet. Maybe one day she could experience a proper one like the one Jae has. Wishful thinking. “I’ll keep on cheering for you” she giggled, it’s nice to see someone who knows what to do. It’s definitely easier said than done when it comes to success, hard work is not everything, unfortunately.
Talent would be nice to come by, but even that’s not enough to go far. But both of them are adults and Taealha was sure Jae didn’t need her to tell him the harsh reality of the world they’re living in. When he complimented her, the human blushed and covered her cheeks with both hands, and grinned sheepishly “It’s all I know to do. I loved to read when I was younger and since I got a lot of unwanted books like those science books parents to give to their children in hopes they’ll develop an interest in it, it became my company.” Growing up in an orphanage where you have to fight with the kids there, it’s not exactly easy. Who doesn’t like animals? Not a lot of people, for sure. Her eyes lit up almost instantly when Jae explained what his boyfriend does “You must get a lot of free passes to go see those animals, huh? How fun.” Perks of having a boyfriend who works closely with animals, she guessed.
“Have you ever named them?” When asked if she hoped to find something in her work, the human pursed her lips slightly and hummed in affirmation, that would be a clear understatement as a biochemist working under the Organization. There’s no reason why she can’t tell him what she hoped to achieve. “I want to find out if we can amplify the regeneration cells and see if it’ll have the same effects in humans. That’s one of them anyway, perhaps if I were to find a breakthrough, maybe other things will come to follow too.” That’s why she’s working closely with the information on the supernaturals living in the city. Especially those who can heal fast. “Maybe if we can find something like that, people wouldn’t die easily before their time… and the likes.”
He was pretty spot on with her ideal types. “Mhmm, brunettes are always hot,” she chuckled. And maybe she wants to see if she could find someone confident enough to handle her. “You’ll be surprised to know there are people who cannot handle potatoes.” Once they got themselves the food they ordered, Taealha poked one of it and took a whole bite of the tteokbokki, and wiped the sauce from the corner of her mouth using the tissue as they continued to walk. “Have you ever encountered anything strange in Evermore?”
He nodded slightly when Taealha pointed out that people were too nosy into other’s business “I’ve learned to start ignoring it, it can only affect us if we allow ourselves to be bothered by it” he pressed his lips together, he preferred to just be with Han and be happy together. He did his best to push aside what everyone else thought but it was easier said than done. He smiled softly when Taealha talked about how she enjoyed reading when she was younger “You got into science from reading the random books your parents left around for you?” he chuckled under his breath in amusement “I think that might be the first time something like that actually worked” he commented softly.
He grinned slightly when she asked him if he got to see the animals for free a lot “We have a free pass to go to most of the local animal reserves whenever we want” he commented and smiled softly “My favorite one is the place that Han works most of the time, they had a baby tiger born and Han got to name it” he bit his lip and smiled, it was a special tiger and he loved visiting it whenever he could. “The rest I just kinda named in my head...it’s kinda fun to imagine what they’d be called” he chuckled under his breath.
Jae tilted his head as he looked back at Taealha as she talked about what she wanted to do with her work, he had no idea where anyone would even start with that but it was fascinating to hear her talk about it because it seemed like it was really important to her “And if you could amplify the regeneration then it could be used...medically to help humans to survive things they couldn’t before right?” that was the gist he could guess from what she said anyway. “Sounds like a lot of work to figure it out” he murmured softly, it must be both rewarding and frustrating at the same time to be working on something so grand.
“Can’t handle potatoes? If they can’t handle that...what do they eat when they need basic meals” he commented in a curious tone, most people would resort to fries whenever there wasn’t anything they wanted on the menu. After they got their food, Jae started nibbling on his food as the two of them walked through the streets “Well I guess that depends what you define as strange” he commented as he glanced over at her “Evermore is a special city after all...there’s plenty of interesting things to see” he was mostly used to it all by now.
How unbothered, she thought, but it does bring a smile to her face, because this type of person, they'll lead a happier life if they stopped caring what others think a little bit more. She's not bad, obviously, but Taealha knows what she wanted and she wasn't shy to go for it. She will shut you down when she needs to do it too, but in a civilized manner. "I know something something that is probably something you'd read in a plot of a book but strangely enough, it stuck with me. They left me a lot of books and I just kinda read all of them to pass the time… the library was pretty big." Science just really appeals to her curious self.
The human let out a whine when he said he was given free passes to go to animal reserves "How fortunate you are, Jae… I'm uber jealous right now. Imagine being that lucky, and your boyfriend could even grant you what? Private tours into certain places?" She pouted because it sounded so fun and convenient. Now she wants someone who has privileges too. Maybe that's superficial of her but she won't even deny wanting them. "Maybe I should get a famous boyfriend or girlfriend" she joked, "Maybe then I'd get to do a lot of things." She's young, she had a lot of things on her wishlist.
Taealha nodded her head enthusiastically when he got the gist of what she wanted to do wuth her research "That's exactly it! There's just so much to uncover there… whether they abide by the physical laws or not… it's just fascinating to even grasp the concept of it. Of course, it won't take a short while to get all the answers or if we'll even get one but I believe with time and effort, we'll get somewhere." Besides, it's no exaggeration that he Organization had plenty of resources she could make use of. "My classmate could not handle potatoes and I have no idea how she went about her day…" There are people like that who actually exist.
"Let me guess, do you think you are part of the strange, Jae?" There was light teasing to her question but her curious eyes obviously wondered if this guy is one she should trust in the long term. "I believe the city holds so many untold secrets." The street was bustling with people and she continued to walk as if she didn't talk about the probability of things being weird. It was a normal Tuesday.
Jae chuckled under his breath “I guess it would work if you already had a tendency for science, my parents would have loved for that to work and get me into some highly esteemed doctorate career” he had never been easy to sway though and after he found something that interested him it had stuck with him. “A big library definitely sounds like a dream though” he murmured softly, he always loved just grabbing a book and losing himself in it.
Jae laughed and wrinkled his nose “You can borrow my pass some time if you want to see it for yourself” he commented and smiled, he was sure Han wouldn’t mind because he was always trying to get more people to visit and donate “There have been a few tours though it can be pretty scary too, whenever Han’s called in, it’s usually because something’s going on with the animals and he needs to help”. He chuckled at the idea of getting a famous partner “Wouldn’t that be the dream huh? Imagine all the parties and fashion shows you’d get into” Taealha seemed like the type who would enjoy those kinds of things.
She sounded so excited about her work that you couldn’t help but feel how important it is to her and from the way she described it, it seemed like it was important “So what’s the overall goal? To be able to cure terminal illnesses?” there was definitely admirability in that kind of work but he had to wonder if they struggled to secure funding as it wasn’t something he imagined was able to be exploited for profit. “She must have consumed like…a whole lot of rice” he commented and chuckled, that was the other main staple food right?
“Oh I know I’m a part of the strange, though admittedly aren’t we all, whether we know it or not” he might be born a dhampir but someone else completely regular could wake up tomorrow a valkyr or get bitten on a full moon and become a therianthrope, no one was excluded from the crazy in the world “This city is something of a legend to most” it was something even the supernatural in Korea knew about and wanted to visit, he never thought he’d get the chance to actually live here.