Thursday, February 15, 2007

To Catch A Fish

To all my readers, to all Asterians, and to all lovers…

Happy Valentine’s Day…

Dong Hae (Super Junior)
Jessica Jung

10 years ago...

“Fishie!” Nicole gurgled as she pointed at a boy on the swing in the playground.

“No dear,” Nicole’s mother said. “That’s a boy, and you should call him oppa.”

“Fishie oppa?” Nicole said, confused.

“Aniyo… oppa, not fishie oppa,” her mother explained patiently.

“Fishie oppa!” Nicole exclaimed as she ran towards the boy and knocked him off the swing.

“Aishii,” the boy exclaimed as he dusted off his butt. “Kwaench’ana?” he said as he helped Nicole up.

“Choesonghamnida,” Nicole’s mother said as she approached him.

“It’s alright,” the boy smiled. “Hey there, what’s your name?” he asked Nicole.

“Her name’s Nicole,” Nicole’s mother said.

“Nicole!” Nicole exclaimed. “Fishie oppa,” she said and she hugged the boy by the legs.

“Fishie oppa?” the boy said, sounding confused.

“She’s only four,” Nicole’s mother explained. “I don’t know why she keeps insisting you are fishie oppa,” she laughed.

“I guess I’m a fish in her mind,” he smiled. “Hey, Nicole,” he said as he squatted down so that he came face to face with her. “My name’s Dong Hae, and I’m 11 years old.”

“Fishie oppa!” Nicole said and gave him a big, wet smack of a kiss on his lips.

He was stunned for a moment, and then he laughed.

“Can I play with her on the swings?” he asked Nicole’s mother.

“Of course,” she smiled. “Go ahead.”

From that day on, Nicole and Dong Hae met at the playground each week, and Dong Hae would push her on the swings for the whole time.


“Fishie oppa!” Nicole yelled as she opened the door.

“Hey!” Dong Hae smiled as he walked in and gave her a hug.

“Oppa! Did you miss me? Did you buy me a present?”

“I went to college, not for a vacation,” he laughed.

“Still… we haven’t seen each other for so long. You must’ve brought me a present.”

“I didn’t exactly bring you a present, but there’s someone I’d like you to meet,” Dong Hae said, and a girl stepped out from behind him.

“Annyeong,” she smiled. “Jessica-imnida.”

“Nicole,” Dong Hae said. “Meet my girlfriend.”

“It’s so nice to finally meet you,” Jessica said. “Dong Hae has told me so much about you. You’re like his very own little sister.”

Nicole stared at the couple, the blood draining from her face. A girlfriend! Her oppa got himself a girlfriend? Why did she feel like someone had stabbed her in the heart? It then dawned on her that from the day they’d met, she’d fallen in love with him. She looked back and forth between her oppa and his girlfriend. Why hadn’t she known how she’d felt sooner? What was she going to do about this now?

Nicole moped around in her room after Dong Hae and Jessica had left. All these years, she’d never really thought about how she felt about her oppa. And now it hit her… she’d always thought he belonged to her. He was her oppa for all these years, and she’d taken for granted that he felt the same way about her. Did he really think of her as a sister, nothing more?

“Oppa!!!” Nicole wailed, and she started crying.

She’d lost her oppa to some girl… she should’ve realized sooner, she should’ve made sure he knew how she felt. Now she was too late. He was now someone else’s boyfriend, and just a brother to her. Nicole looked at their photo in the huge photo frame beside her bed. It was of them when Nicole was about 6 years old, and Dong Hae was pushing her on the swing.

Whenever she was feeling down, she’d always call Dong Hae and ask to meet him at the playground. When they were there, he’d push her on the swing while she told him about her problems. And when he had a problem, he’d tell her everything while pushing her on the swing. Throughout his high school years, he’d never talked about having a girlfriend, and Nicole had never felt that anyone would threaten her relationship with her fishie oppa. Now that he was far away, in college, he’d found someone to replace her?

“You’re very quiet,” Jessica said as she and Dong Hae walked away from Nicole’s house.

“Huh?” he said as he looked at her with a confused expression.

Dong Hae had always been talking about this Nicole; how they’d sort of grown up together, how she was such a good friend and all, and it always made her wonder if she could measure up to Nicole. It was only when Dong Hae said that Nicole was like his sister that Jessica was able to have her mind at peace. So this Nicole was just a sister to him. But the look on her face when Dong Hae announced that Jessica was his girlfriend told Jessica that Nicole felt more than that for Dong Hae. Was Dong Hae able to read Nicole’s expression like she did? Probably not, since guys are pretty dense in that department.

“Where are we going?” Jessica smiled as she linked her arms with Dong Hae.

“Anywhere you want,” he said, absent-mindedly.

Dong Hae was still thinking about Nicole’s expression from earlier. She looked hurt. He’d thought that Nicole would be happy that he’d found himself a girlfriend. She was always telling him that he acted like a monk and that he should date. Why did she have that expression then?

“Ying…” Nicole wailed over the phone.

“What’s up Nicole?” Ying said. She could sense that Nicole was about to have some kind of meltdown.

“My fishie oppa got himself a girlfriend!” she said, and started crying again.

“What? I thought you guys were like together since you were 4?” Ying said.

“Well… we’ve never officially said we were dating. We were just… there… there for each other.”

“Then you can’t blame him for getting a girlfriend,” Ying said. “Stop crying.”

“But I always thought that he’d ask me someday,” she sniffed.

“Nicole… you have to tell him. Guys are dense. You need to tell it to his face that you like him.”

“What if he doesn’t feel the same?”

“It’s just a risk you have to take. You do it, or lose him to that girl forever and ever.”

“How do I do it?”

“Does he really meet you whenever you ask? No matter what he’s doing?”

“Yea… when he’s back here from college.”

“Good… get him to meet you on Valentine’s Day… then tell him how you feel.”

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?”

“Nicole… it’s do or die. You want to keep him, you need to try.”

“Fine…” Nicole sighed. “But I need your help. What should I wear?”

And the rest of the conversation was spent plotting how Nicole would win her fishie oppa back from Jessica.

On Valentine’s Day…

Dong Hae was having dinner with Jessica at a nice, romantic Italian restaurant. He’d picked her up earlier from her house and given her a bouquet of roses and a fluffy teddy bear.

“Komawo,” she smiled, and kissed him on the cheek.

Dong Hae had felt happy at that moment, but somehow, he felt something was missing. Up till now, he couldn’t figure it out.

“This pasta is delicious,” Jessica exclaimed as she ate. “Try it,” she said as she held a forkful of it at Dong Hae.

He leaned forward and ate off the fork. It was delicious, but Dong Hae didn’t really taste it. His mind was occupied with thoughts. Thoughts he’d not thought of for a long time, since before he’d left for college. He was at the playground with Nicole on the night before he left for the college in Seoul.

“I’m gonna be so lonely without you,” he’d said to Nicole.

For the past few days, he’d been thinking about how life would be without Nicole, how he would survive life in college without her being there for him all the time. It didn’t seem like a pretty picture to look forward to.

“You can always get yourself a girlfriend,” Nicole had laughed. “You’re almost 20, oppa! Get a life!”

He’d actually felt a bit lost when she said that. In his mind, she was the only girl he’d ever known and the only girl he was comfortable with. Could he really replace her with someone else?

He looked at Jessica who sat across him, smiling sweetly. She was beautiful and she was a cool girl to date, but somehow, there was something missing. He didn’t feel as connected with her as he was with Nicole. Just then, his cell phone rang. He looked at the screen and Nicole’s photo, the one where she was pointing her middle finger, flashed on it. She’d taken the photo sometimes ago and insisted that he used it.

“Nicole?” he said, as soon as he answered.

“Fishie oppa,” Nicole said. “I need to see you.”

“What’s wrong Nicole?” he asked. She sounded nervous. Was she in some kind of trouble?

“I just need to see you. Can you meet me at the playground? I’ll leave my house now.”

“I’m in the middle of dinner, Nicole,” Dong Hae explained. Jessica was starting to look at him with an odd expression. It almost looked as if she was pissed off.

“Please fishie oppa,” Nicole said pleadingly, and he could never say no to her when she sounded like that.

“Okay…” he sighed. “I’ll be there in 15 minutes.”

“Komawo,” Nicole said.

“Was that Nicole?” Jessica asked as soon as Dong Hae hung up.

“Yea. I’m sorry, but I need to go.”

“Go where? To meet her?” Jessica asked.

“Yea… I think she’s troubled or something. I’ll make this up to you another day, okay?”

Jessica was livid. Not only did Dong Hae talk about Nicole incessantly each time they were together, now he was leaving her alone on Valentine’s Day for Nicole?

“Dong Hae, I think you need to decide now,” she said, her voice shaking with anger.

“Decide what?”

“Who are you dating?” she almost screamed at him. “Me or Nicole?”

“I told you, Nicole’s like a sister to me,” Dong Hae said.

“Don’t give me that load of baloney! You don’t need to run to your sister whenever she calls. She’s not even your real sister.”

“She’s only 14, Jessica.”

“But you have to admit that you feel something for her,” Jessica pointed out.

“I…” Dong Hae started, but he couldn’t continue.

He realised that this was probably why he’d never felt complete with Jessica. He needed Nicole.

“Well?” Jessica said.

“I’m sorry Jessica, I guess it’s really Nicole I needed all along,” he said.

“What?” Jessica said, aghast.

“Mianhae, cheongmal mianhae,” he said as he got up from his chair.

“Dong Hae… if you leave now, I don’t ever want to see you again,” Jessica threatened.

“Then I guess its good bye forever,” he said, and he turned to leave.

“Dong Hae!” Jessica exclaimed.

She was shocked. She hadn’t expected him to really leave. She’d actually thought she meant something to him. She slumped back into her chair, feeling lost and defeated. All those months of trying to win Dong Hae’s heart, and in the end, it had belonged to that child, that 14 year old, right from the beginning. She stared at the bowl of pasta before her for the longest time, pondering. What did she do wrong this time? She’d never lost a guy like that. She was the one who called the shots most of the time. In a fit of frustration, she started eating, and she ate until she'd finished all the food on the table.

Dong Hae rushed out of the restaurant as soon as he paid the bill. Nicole was probably already waiting for him. How was he going to tell her now? Would she feel the same for him? He felt excited and afraid as he jogged towards the playground where she waited, but he felt happy that he now knew where his heart belonged.

“How do I look?” Nicole asked Ying, who was at her house, helping her prepare for her meeting with Dong Hae.

“The perfect bait,” Ying smiled.


“Don’t you call him fishie oppa? If he’s a fish, then you’re fish bait, since you want to catch a fish, don’t you?” Ying laughed.

“I’ve never thought of it that way,” Nicole laughed. “Well, I’d better go now. Oppa’s waiting.”

“Okay. Good luck!” Ying said as she hugged Nicole.

“Thanks! I hope I catch my fish,” she laughed nervously.

When she approached the playground, Dong Hae was already there, sitting on the swing, moving back and forth slowly. When he heard her footsteps, he looked up and smiled at her. He’d never looked more handsome to her than now.

“Hey…” he said, and she sat down in the swing next to him.

“Thanks for coming,” she said.

“I’ve been doing it for 10 years now. It’s programmed in me,” he laughed softly.

“Push me?” she said, and he got up and started to push her slowly on the swing.

“Higher?” he asked.

“Yea! I want to touch the sky,” she said, and he pushed her harder.

They carried on like this for the next few minutes, until Dong Hae arms felt tired. That was when he slowed the swing to a stop.

“You’re tired?” she said, as she arched her back to look up at his face.

“Yea,” he said, and there was an awkward silence.

“Oppa…” Nicole said, breaking the silence.

“Nicole,” he cut her off. “Before you say anything, there’s something I need to tell you.”

“What is it?” she asked him.

“Nicole… saranghae,” he said. He was standing behind her as she sat on the swing, and she almost fell off when he said that.

“Mwo?” she said as she regained her balance.

“I love you,” he said as he came to kneel on one knee in front of her.

“Oppa…” Nicole said, her voice shaking. “Since when…”

“Since always,” he said. “I just never did anything about it.”

“Wow…” she said, softly.

“So what is it you wanted to tell me?” he asked.

“Huh?” she said, still dazed from his confession. She’d come here to catch her fish, and in the end, she felt that it was she who was caught now.

“You said you had something important talk to me about,” he said.

“Oh… that,” she said. “Actually, I was gonna tell you the same thing.”

“The same thing?”

“Na tto saranghae,” she smiled.


“Chintcha,” she replied.

“And all this time, you didn’t say anything.”

“I didn’t think you’d get yourself a girlfriend. I’d always thought that you were mine,” she smiled sheepishly.

“I am yours,” he chuckled.

“Oppa…” she exclaimed with joy, and put her arms around him.

“Saranghae,” he whispered into her hair as he hugged her back.

“Saranghae,” she said to him, as she pulled away to face him.

Dong Hae cupped her face in his hands, and he kissed her softly on the lips.

“Now you’re mine too,” he said when he pulled away.

“You know… technically, I was yours since the first day we met,” she said.


“Have you forgotten the kiss I gave you the first time we met?”

“Oh… that kiss,” he smiled. “Then I guess I can skip all the formalities,” he laughed.

“Formalities?” she said, puzzled.

“Yea… I can just kiss you whenever I want then,” he winked and he leaned in to kiss her again.

Hours later, Dong Hae asked Nicole a question that had been burning in his mind for the last 10 years.

“Nicole,” he said.

“Hmm?” she replied.

“Why do you call me fishie?”

Nicole looked at him and smiled mysteriously.

“I’ll tell you next year, on Valentine’s Day.”

“Okay,” Dong Hae laughed.

He wasn’t in a hurry to know, and if he needed a lifetime with her to find the answers to his questions, then so be it. He didn’t mind being a fish, for as long as he was her fish.


Anonymous said...

wow even a one shot story on Valentine's day! Don't have a boyfriend but loved the story! ^^
Thank you!

leeteuk_x3 said...

“I’ll tell you next year, on Valentine’s Day.”

you should right another one shot next year explaining this =]

loving all your stories

Anonymous said...

wow it's true donghae is a fishie oppa.look here:

Anonymous said...

it was a good story but the main girl's name should be michelle because that's my name....

시에라 (Sierra) said...

Well... Michelle... you should comment more often with your name instead of anonymous... then maybe one day I'll write one with your name in it ^_^

Anonymous said...

I Love this story~ From now on i'll try to call Donghae sshi Fishie oppa lol

Anonymous said...

wahh valentines day already past...when is this sequel going to come? fishie oppa...