Beanie level: Errand boy

Fixing Me Softly, Paragraph 4~

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    Mi-ran was distracted the following Monday. Her tasks were piling up but she found herself far more concerned with her phone. More and more frequently, she broke from typing to check for new messages. Eventually she couldn’t stand it anymore, and stepped out into the shade of the courtyard to call Dae-hwan.
    A dull voice answered, “Hello?”
    Mi-ran wondered whether he’d just woken up. “Are you out of my flat yet?” she interrogated.
    “I’m making lunch, I’ll be out by the time you get back.”
    “Just leave!”
    “Come on, I have to eat something-”
    “And don’t show up without warning again!” Mi-ran added quickly. It came out so spontaneously that she almost regretted it.
    Dae-hwan sighed softly, “Mi-ran-ah, you know what my situation is like right now.”
    “I’m genuinely sorry about all that, but you can’t use me like this anymore. You can’t show up pissed all the time and expect me to comfort you.”
    “I get it, I shouldn’t drink so much. We still have fun though, don’t we?”
    “That’s not the point! I want a proper relationship now.” Only as Mi-ran said this did she fully understand that it was true. She had been dwelling on Song-yi’s advice more than she realised. “I’d like that to be with you, but I won’t cling if you don’t feel the same.”
    “Go Mi-ran-”
    “You know what, let’s meet later and talk in person. I’ll see you after work, okay? Bye.”
    As she hung up, Mi-ran’s chest felt tight. There was no going back, but she couldn’t help feeling a little thrilled. She wanted to head straight to Song-yi’s department to talk about it, but relented when she remembered how busy her friend was today with meetings and presentations. They were planning to walk to the bus station together anyway, she could tell her then.
    Mi-ran stood up and brushed the leaves off her skirt. As she sauntered back into the office, Dong-chan approached her, “Mi-ran-ssi, can I have a moment?”
    “Sure thing.”
    Mi-ran was quite fond of Dong-chan – he didn’t speak much to her, or anyone really, but when he did he was thoughtful and kind. It made her wonder if he just had trouble being social, and she was more talkative with him to compensate.
    “Do you have a lot of work left over?” he asked.
    “Aside from a few emails, there’s nothing pressing. Why?”
    “PD-nim wants to take us out – a ‘business visit’ is what I think he called it?”
    “Hm?” Mi-ran frowned, “That doesn’t make any sense. What could I do outside?”
    Dong-chan ran a hand through his hair, “Jung-woo and Mi-rae are off today, he might just want an extra pair of hands? What do you want to do?”
    Mi-ran thought about it. She checked her watch. “I’m in – just as long as we can get back here at five, I have plans this evening.”

Fixing Me Softly, Paragraph 3!
This one took days to write.

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    Son PD’s mood flavoured the pathetic little dinner party with an uncomfortable weight. He had been talking at them for hours now, although as the number of soju bottles around him increased, the volume of this monologue dropped until it resembled more of a quiet mutter. Dong-chan gave up trying to piece his sentences together, and leaned towards Jung-woo.
    “Take Mi-rae home, I’ll handle him from here,” he said. Younger than the two of them and eager to please, Mi-rae was weaker to the pressure to drink. She was propped up with one arm, red in the face and dozing.
    Dong-chan almost felt disappointed when Jung-woo didn’t argue. He woke Mi-rae with a shake and coaxed her to put an arm over his shoulders, slinging her handbag over his head. Son PD suddenly reanimated.
    “Hey, where are they going?”
    “It’s time to head back, PD-nim,” Dong-chan responded firmly, “We should go too.”
    “Right, right,” he grunted, using the table to pull himself uneasily to his feet. As he stumbled over to the bar, Dong-chan noted that at least he had the decency to pay this time. Despite inevitably drinking 90% of the alcohol bought for hweshiks, normally it was Dong-chan who had to suck it up and pay if he wanted to night to come to an end.

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    The night air was mild. Dong-chan walked a few steps behind his superior, thinking about whether to take a taxi or a bus home, and what he would make for dinner.
    “Dong-chan-ah…” Son PD slurred, which brought Dong-chan back to the matter at hand.
    “Yes?” he said, closing the space between them.
    “Do you think I’m crazy too?”
    There was no good answer to this question, so Dong-chan just chose not to answer. He was only devoting about half of his attention to what Son PD was saying, prioritising the rest to making sure he walked straight.
    “This project could revolutionise if someone gave it a chance! My friend… He, um… He’s the scientist I want to work with, right? We went to school together and he was always so smart-” he broke off for a hiccup, “So smart! He’s changing the world, and I’m…”
    “I’ll call a taxi,” Dong-chan interrupted, fumbling for his phone when Son PD grabbed his arm roughly.
    “Do you look down on me too?” he growled. They were starting to catch the attention of people passing by. A group of university students sitting in the pojangmacha were particularly entertained and sniggered to themselves.
    Dong-chan cringed, embarrassed.
    “I’ll call a taxi,” he repeated more firmly, easing out of the older man’s grip. Heaving a deep sigh, he found himself wondering if it would be okay to just leave and deal with the consequences later. Son PD had curled up against the nearest building. “Dong-chan-ah! Dong-chan-ah!” he kept calling, gradually getting louder and louder.
    Dong-chan wrapped up the phone call quickly and, exasperated, answered, “What, PD-nim? What is it now?”
    “You do it for me. You participate.”
    “Excuse me?”
    “Be part of my experiment!” Son PD wailed.
    Dong-chan scoffed. Completely baffled, he could not stop his free thoughts from spilling out, “You must be insane! Oh, you crazy bastard, I’m the idiot for humouring you!”
    Spotting the taxi parked by the side of the road, Dong-chan pulled a half-conscious Son PD to his feet and bundled him in. The walk home helped him to calm down, and he resolved to pretend he had never received such a scary proposition.

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      Thank you!
      I like that mi- rae and dong chan are working together in the production company and already have a budding friendship. Dongchan doesn’t have a girlfriend in this right?

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        No, he doesn’t, he’s a bit of a lone wolf. He’s close to Mi-rae and Jung-woo, but doesn’t really have any other persisting friendships – and of course, he’s interested in Mi-ran.

        I’m glad you’re enjoying it, I’m scarily committed to it now! 😂

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          Oops I meant Mi-ran!
          Yeah that makes sense and I think it will make it more believable after the experiment that he falls for Mi-ran. I see him as a bit of a workaholic, he has put all his energy into making shows, that he doesn’t really have any strong ties to anyone.
          In the drama, he seemed like he was an observer in his own family. I got the impression that cancelling family events or dates with his girlfriend due to his work.

          But yeah I can’t wait to read the other chapters, I hope it is not adding too much pressure on you to write.

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Fixing Me Softly, Paragraph 2~

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    Dong-chan and his co-workers watched the door uneasily. The words were muffled, but it was obvious that Son PD and the station’s chief had resorted to literal screaming. Dong-chan sat up straight, looking at Mi-rae and Jung-woo over the dividers, “Should we just get lunch?”
    “Can we?” Jung-woo answered eagerly, “I’ve actually been hungry for a while now.”
    “We can’t!” Mi-rae shot back at him, “That asshole will go on all evening about how we have no loyalty and how we clearly don’t care about this project-”
    “We don’t,” Dong-chan pointed out, which Mi-rae responded to with a withering look. The three fell back into silence and resumed watching the door. Through the blinds, there were glimpses of the scene unfolding inside. The chief was clearly getting tired – massaging his forehead, eyes closed – and Son PD was more relentless and passionate than ever, pacing the room, his mouth running a mile a minute.
    “What’s going on?”
    Dong-chan spun his chair around and was briefly caught off guard by Mi-ran, leaning on the divider between himself and Jung-woo.
    “Mi-ran-ssi, help us!” Mi-rae cried.
    “Is this about that whole cryogenics thing?” She looked to Dong-chan as she asked this, but he didn’t know how to answer.
    “How did you know?” Mi-rae piped up instead.
    “There’s this poster downstairs recruiting participants.”
    “Oh, that crazy-!” Jung-woo groaned, “Mi-ran-ssi, can you go and convince him he’s acting like a mental case for us? God knows, we’ve tried.”
    Mi-ran laughed as she retreated to her desk, “How could I do that? I’m just the admin.”
    Dong-chan was struck by what a nice laugh it was, and as he considered calling her back, the door flung open.
    “Kids!” Son PD bellowed as he marched out, “Let’s go have a hweshik!”
    “Yes, sir!” the three cried out in unison, sharing a collective groan as they hurriedly got their belongings together. As they filed out, Dong-chan met Mi-ran’s eyes. She smiled and good-naturedly mouthed, “Fighting!”

Fixing Me Softly!
(I intended to upload this in three parts but it’s grown out of my control, so here’s a paragraph~)

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    “You’re still sleeping with him?”
    Mi-ran sheepishly stirred her coffee with the paper straw, “I guess I am.”
    “Mi-ran-ah, this can’t go anywhere good!” Song-yi protested.
    “I know, I know that, but it’s not even like I’m encouraging it! Dae-hwan just shows upon my doorstep every Sunday night, like clockwork.”
    Song-yi raised an eyebrow, “Is it at least good?”
    Mi-ran gave her a half-smile, “Depends. Sometimes he’s too drunk to tell if he’s even inside, you know?”
    They shared an immature giggle. Gulping the last dregs of her tea, Song-yi got to her feet, “Well, it’s your life. I just hope you aren’t starting to expect anything of him.”
    “Oh, Eonni, you worry too much!”
    “You think I don’t know you?” Song-yi retorted, slinging an arm around her friend’s shoulders.
    Mi-ran laughed as they walked out of the café in step, “Hey, we’re young! There’s still plenty of time to mess around.”
    “I disagree, I think we need to use this time to make something of ourselves, you know? To build our legacy-”
    “Again, with the nagging,” Mi-ran interrupted playfully, “Were you out protesting again this weekend?”
    “You know I was.”
    “How did it go?”
    “The same as always – people look away and ignore us, but then they go home and they think about what we were asking for. Eventually it’ll make a difference, I’m sure of it.”
    As they sauntered back into the building, a poster to the right of the stairs caught Mi-ran’s eye. She stopped, intrigued by it, “What’s Son PD up to now?”
    “Oh, that?” Song-yi grimaced, “His next masterpiece. Pay no attention to it, there’s no way it’ll get approved anyway, he’s just acting up.”
    They started up the stairs. Mi-ran looked down at the poster one last time. “But he’s claiming it’s possible to cryogenically freeze people! Is it?”
    “I don’t know. It’s probably just a gimmick or something.”

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Considering how most of the Japanese dramas I cherish and rewatch are from the 2000s, it’s a bit surreal to see TikTok pop up in the little sponsors bit.

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Okay, this is the funniest thing I’ve ever seen.

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Fixing Me Softly: Introduction (Below)

Episode 1, Coming Soon to a Fan Wall Near You

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    The year is 2009. A man and a women wake up to a blazing summer morning. The woman, Go Mi-ran, hooks her bra and throws a dress over her head. As she leaves her bedroom, she casts an eye roll towards the body slumped on her bed. Content with buttered toast, she eats quickly and heads to the bus stop. The man, Ma Dong-chan, stands in front of the wardrobe for a solid minute deciding what clothes would be appropriate for the weather. He sits for a hearty breakfast, white rice and an array of colourful side dishes, before locking up and rolling along to work in his beat up little car.
    It is at the office where these two might encounter each other – today is one of those days. Walking down opposites sides of a long corridor, Dong-chan notices Mi-ran from a distance.
    “Hi, Mi-ran-ssi,” he smiles. Mi-ran does not notice him until she is already passing by, and calls over her shoulder an awkward, “Oh! Good morning!” As she walks away, she tries to remember his name. This is the extent of their interactions, generally. Neither of them could ever predict how they are about to be irreversibly linked.

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Friends! If any of you liked the ‘two people are accidentally frozen for 20 years in a variety-show experiment gone wrong’ premise, but didn\’t like Melting Me Softly\’s premise, look below!

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I\’m so mad. Love Alarm just lost so many points because of that cliffhanger.

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So I just binged all of the Cha Hyun/Seol Ji-hwan scenes in WWW, and now this is stuck in my head! 🤣

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This week, drama taught me that the person who cries in empathy when you cry is the perfect person for you.

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    It’s because he is very familiar with that kind of pain – whatever it is….

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      That feeling that you are ‘alone’ in this world.

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        Funny that you would write that particular phrase ‘alone in this world’ @mayhemf.
        That was me yesterday morning. I was so blue and depressed and felt very much alone and just didn’t feel like talking to anyone at work.
        Well, one co-worker noticed I wasn’t greeting her with my usual enthusiasm (which is always tempted as I don’t really care for her)
        She messaged me to ask if I was upset that she had just become a permanent employee at the company and I wrote that I was feeling alone and didn’t matter anywhere. I mean, I was really honest and put myself out there – because she asked!
        ‘Let’s go for a walk’ she says, ‘I have something to tell you’ she says.

        Stupidly, I confided how blue and alone and isolated I felt everywhere …
        and what does she do but start in to tell me about her life and how hard it is with her daughter who is bi-polar!

        By the end of our walk I was consoling her – and when I went back to my desk I found that I was so damned annoyed that I felt better.

        That got me out of my pity-party – but when I saw the prince tell her to cry if she needed to and left the room to give her privacy I cheered.
        Still I wished he could have given her a shoulder to cry on- though it wouldn’t have been appropriate…..
        But he GOT her!

        So note to all Beanies – when someone tells you they are feeling blue – just listen okay?

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          Sometimes we all just need some time alone to feel better.
          I was so glad he gave her the space. But before he left, his words, however minimal, was all she needed to hear.

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I’ve just realised, I’ve never tried to talk to anyone about Shitsuren Chocolatier before! I watched it last year, and absolutely loved it. (Continued)

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    I think the reason no-one really watches this one is because the biggest mistake to make about it is believing it’s a romantic comedy. Nope, don’t go into this drama thinking that, because then you’ll hate it. Shitsuren Chocolatier is not a romcom.
    It’s about a man who goes abroad to become a chocolatier all in the hopes of securing the heart of the woman he likes, who loves chocolate (and has also rejected him). The hero spends the entire drama lusting after the heroine, and when he finally has her, something’s not right. This drama is all about obsessive love. The kind of idealised love that turns toxic.
    There’s far more to it than this, of course – my favourite part of the story is the friends-with-benefits relationship that the hero strikes up with another girl. The irony is that although this relationship should be far more unhealthy than the one he has with the heroine, you can actually see how well-suited the two are for each other. If only he could get over the heroine.
    The casting is great – Ishihara Satomi, especially, gives a standout performance. Her character is a complete enigma, only ever teasing what might be on her complex mind.
    I recommend this a lot – just remember that for a drama about chocolate, it’s surprisingly bittersweet.

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    Wow the description lookf very j-doramayy plus interesting. Korean, chinese don’t tend to go the opposite route of romcom that often. If it doesn’t involve psychopathic tendencies and two normal people not fitting together after being together than I’ll surely check this out.

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      I agree, yeah! You’re very unlikely to see a romcom that isn’t played as fated, true love, and that’s kind of what this is. It’s a dark comedy, it knows the hero is pathetic and works with that. It’s a little disturbing sometimes, too. I’m really glad I gave it a chance!

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No-one this month has talked about the most despicable and hated of antagonists! The One True Villain!

It’s Han Yi-an from School 2015.

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 7: Jang Hyuk is held down by the same two guys all episode long, and it’s hilarious.

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 6: A (pointless) timeskip!

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 5: I was going to make a snide comment about how no characters here have any common sense, but Jang Hyuk and Jang Nara playing baseball is too adorable.

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 4: Welp, Grandma is dead, Second Lead Bitch is a murderer, and our Bright Girl isn’t so bright anymore. This got melo so fast I have whiplash.

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 3: I’m mightily confused by how this company and this school work, but it’s worth it to watch Jang Hyuk falling asleep over toast.

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Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 2: Hero’s business strategy for his cosmetics company is to “change ugly girls into beautiful angels”. Well, I wonder where this is going?

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Jang Hyuk Marathon!

Success Story of a Bright Girl, Episode 1: Gotta love those 2000s special effects.

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