Park and Violet

By: Marian Tee

Chapter One

Bang! Bang! Bang!

The noise jarred Park awake, nearly causing him to tumble out of his short and narrow bed. He had always had a soft spot for Japan - his childhood here had been beyond happy–but it took only a few days after arriving in Osaka as a foreign exchange student that he quickly realized one thing: a child’s memory was radically different from a man’s reality.

Japan, as it turned out, was not as perfect as it had first seemed. Then he had been a kid. Now, he stood six foot three, and if there was one thing about Japan that he absolutely loathed—it would be their Western style beds.

Japan’s beds sucked big time—or make that small time. Had they never seen someone taller than five and a half feet, for God’s sake? He had already ordered a king-sized bed, but because this was Japan–with almost the entire nation preferring to sleep on floor mats called tatami, his special order would take about two weeks for delivery. Two weeks of having to sleep with almost half of his body off the bed, dammit!

Bang! Bang! Bang!

Who the fuck was making all that noise?

Pulling on a pair of sweatpants, Park stalked out of his dorm room, cracking his knuckles because whoever it was had just signed up to get a taste of his fist. He was not a fucking morning person, and this was definitely not a fucking good way to wake him up.

Bang! Bang! Bang!

He stopped dead in his tracks when he reached the landing leading to the next flight of steps.

A girl stood at the mezzanine level above him, doing her best to drag two heavy-looking monogrammed leather suitcases with her. A dark curtain of hair fell over her shoulders, effectively hiding her face from him.

“Why don’t you use the elevator?”

Violet jerked in surprise at the slightly accented growl. She knew her Asian accents very well, ever since she had stumbled upon a boxed set of the Taiwanese drama Meteor Garden from a garage sale back home. It was love at first viewing, and she had devoured everything Asian after that, from J-pop to K-drama and even those wonderfully creepy Thai horror films.

This voice was Korean, definitely. She was willing to bet on it. And this voice sounded grumpy, too, which only made her feel even more annoyed.

Violet finally glanced–well, it was more like a glare–down to find out what an idiot looked like. After all, only genuine idiots would ask idiotic questions like that.

Glare met glare as she found herself looking at a tall, scowling bare-chested guy from the previous landing.

She scowled right back even though she was momentarily shocked. He sounded Korean but he looked anything but. If anything, he looked positively–Nordic. Yes, that was the word. He looked a lot like the smoking-hot ash blond club owner in True Blood–a younger version, but everything else was like a carbon copy. Marble chest, gawk-worthy abs–he even had the classically sharp looks one would expect from a vampire. His hair stood up in spikes–a clear indication that she had likely gotten him out of bed, but even the worst bed-head in history couldn’t disguise how jaw-droppingly gorgeous he was.

Violet did her very best not to stare even though she could feel goosebumps popping all over her body. It just wasn’t because he was half-naked. There was also the fact that his sweatpants rode so low on his hips she knew it was just a hair’s breadth away from showing what she so did not want to see.

Show-off, she thought nastily, mood darkening. It was her first day today in Japan, and so far everything was a disaster. She had gotten lost at the airport. She had gotten lost on her way to university. And like a damn cherry on the top, she had also gotten lost on her way here–the dormitory she would be calling home for the next two years.

Yeah, everything that happened so far had just made her already-bad mood worse, and the blond gigolo in front of her—his very perfection made Violet want to get into a scowling contest with him.

“Well?” the guy barked. He looked like he was dying to kill her.

Violet threw him her best drop-dead look with a lift of her chin. “I would’ve if it wasn’t under maintenance.” Idiot, she added silently.

Park saw and understood that look. He did so because he knew he himself had that look every time someone would ask him a stupid question.

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