Started: December 26, 2011
My breath almost stops as I see hundreds upon thousands of eyes staring right back at me. They’re not just any kind of eyes from any normal kind of students. They’re big and brown and by the looks that they’re giving me, they don’t give a rat’s butt about who I am. It’s understandable—I mean, I’m not famous like they are, have money like they do, or have one ounce of their beauty even though I’m probably around their age.
I could pass as a student at this school but sadly, I’m not here to learn. I’m here to be their counselor—whatever that may entail is beyond my knowledge. When I applied, there wasn’t much information on the job. My mom said her friend, who worked at this school, needed a counselor and told me to apply. Out of pure desperation, I agreed. I’m starting to regret my decision.
“Han Seri will be your new counselor for this year.” President Yoon is a humble, elderly man. Though, it may seem like he’s counting down the days to his retirement rather than wanting to be the president of this school any longer. As soon as he finishes speaking, a swarm of voices from the audience murmurs in disbelief. The students are looking at each other, folding their arms and blowing their bangs out of their face. I catch some of the students talking amongst each other.
‘Again? What is this… the 5th one this year?’
‘I bet she’ll be running by the end of the week.’
‘Nah, make that by Wednesday.’
‘She’ll be asking to be fired by noon.’
‘I bet you’ll make her cry by the end of morning assembly.’
Not sure if anyone is aware but I’m pretty sure that my mouth is hanging wide open at the conduct of these students. Why the frack are they taking bets on me? Are they even old enough to gamble—are they even allowed to gamble?! I honestly have no idea what I have gotten myself into. The teachers don’t seem to empathize with me either but rather have looks of pity. Shaking their heads at me, it seems as if they are fearing for my life. I think if I were to die at this job, I might just haunt my mom for the rest of her life for making me apply. I rather be poor than be eaten alive by pop idols. I’m only 24 years old. I have barely lived my life. My fear is short lived because being fired is the last thing that I want. I need this job and by the looks of the kids in the audience—maybe just maybe I am exactly what this school needs.
As the assemble ends, I quickly go after the president. “President Yoon, what exactly am I supposed to do here? I mean, these aren’t ordinary people.”
He laughs, his voice has gotten richer through the years, “Of course they are not normal. They’re enough to drive me into an early retirement!”
I was right about his retirement countdown.
“Okay, but that still doesn’t answer—”
“Make them get along.”
“Excuse me?” My tone rises to almost a squeak.
“Make them get along. They are always fighting, arguing, the most psychotic people you will ever meet. In front of the cameras, they act like these sweet angels but behind the scenes—they’re just crazy. Your job is to make them be friends with each other. Level their heads. Get them back to reality and become— normal.”
“Normal? Nothing about them is normal! Didn’t you see their evil eyes? They were betting on my job. They are like little demons! How am I supposed to tame them?”
“That’s your job. I want them to remember what it was like before their fame got to their heads. Figure it out.” he says. “Han Seri! Fighting!”
I stand in my spot in shock—on the verge of falling into complete defeat. Whoever made the bet that I’m going to cry by the end of morning assembly is going to be a rich man. Walking to my classroom, I feel like there’s a huge dark cloud hanging over my head. The large wooden door door is imposing as my hand stays permanently fixed on the handle, unable to turn the switch. It’s perfectly normal for a counselor to be nervous in front of meeting the students but again, these aren’t just any kind of students.
“Yah, lady. Are you going in?”
Turning to my left, I see a boy with a haphazardly put on uniform, lean on the door frame staring at me as if I’m a lunatic. He sighs and turns the handle, brisking past me. I take a deep breath and enter the room, making sure that they don’t feed off my fear. I’m pretty sure these kids can smell fear. The room isn’t as big as the one in the morning assembly but rather than sitting next to each other, all the students are divided into groups. Some groups are all boys, others are all girls, some ranged from five students, some with twelve members.
Make them be friends.
I blow my side bangs out of my face and turn my attention to the students. Opening the roll call book, I call each student to the front desk to make sure I remember their names and faces.
Rather than one girl standing up, I see a group of nine girls get up and walk towards me. My eye scans each girl as one by one they line up in front of my desk. There can’t possibly be nine girls with the same name.
“We are Girl’s Generation.”
I sort of laugh at the groups name under my breath which catches the attention of almost everyone in the room. They’re all wearing white dresses, similar in style but each different in the details. The only thing missing is a halo above their heads.
“Are you all Im Yoona?” I ask.
“No, but we’re Girl’s Generation.”
I can’t tell them apart. They all have the same hairstyle, way of standing, way of talking, same make up. Honestly, if they are all Im Yoona, I wouldn’t be surprised because they’re like twins times nine.
“Then only Im Yoona should be up here, not all nine of you. So if you are not Im Yoona, sit back down,” I smile, but would much rather grit my teeth at them. They sigh and look at me, almost dagger like eyes stabbing me. It’s as if they are mentally giving me a message saying, ‘You better watch it, lady’.
Eight of the girls sit back down and one is left. She stands gracefully in front of me with her hands clasped together in front of her. Her legs are tall and straight with not one strand out of place in her hair. She has the most freakin’ perfect face I have ever seen, making me so envious. I can’t get my hair to look half as decent as hers. I can’t even get my clothes to look that cute on me.
“Okay, Im Yoona right?” I ask and put a number one next to her name. “Sit in the first seat.”
She gives me the angelic smile, a smile that’s most likely programmed into your brain by her management company. As soon as she turns her head, I know that she rolled her eyes at me. Angelic my ass! Rather than a halo, I need to put horns on her head.
“Park Gyuri,” I call out to the room. Like Girl’s Generation, a group of five begins to stand up and by that moment, I have reached my boiling point. “Yah, if you are not Park Gyuri and you’re standing up to announce your group name to me or something—I swear I will mess up all of your hair and make-up before you even make it up to the front desk. Got it?” I slam my hand onto the desk.
The girls in the auditorium gasp in horror and pull out their pocket mirrors.
“The same goes for the guys!”
Everyone groans in the room. Flinging my bangs out of my face, I point at the next girl to walk down the stairs. “Park Gyuri, right? Sit next to Im Yoona.”
“I’m sorry, but what?” Gyuri asks.
She gives me an incredulous expression—like I just asked her to fly out into space with a monkey or something. “Is there anything wrong?” I ask her, the sound of my voice is sounding more tired by the second.
“I can’t sit next to her!”
“I’m KARA. She’s Girl’s Generation.”
What language are these people speaking? “I don’t care if you’re from the freakin’ moon. Go sit in the second seat or it’s your face on the line,” I mark a number two next to Park Gyuri’s name and pick another name at random. “Kwon Jiyong,” I look out into the crowd and see no one stand up. “Kwon Jiyong? Is he not here today?”
“Yah, lady,” a sleepy figure from the back stands up and I recognize him as being the student from earlier that wore the messy uniform. “Can you be a little more quiet in the morning. Some of us are trying to sleep.”
He sits back down and digs his face into his hands, going back into his sleep. His friends around him sit back in their chairs and laugh. The day really isn’t getting any better and this kid definitely is not helping my case. I walk up to his seat and pull him up by his collar. His name tag said ‘Kwon Jiyong’. He pushes my arm away and straightens his posture, clearly annoyed with me.
“Go to the third seat.” I point to the seat next to Gyuri.
“Call me lady one more time and I’ll—”
“You’ll what?” he inches closer and closer, pushing my back towards the wall.
I snatch his ear and drag him down to the third seat. All the while that I did this, I hope that I’m not ending up on his hit list. He tries to get out of my reach but I just pinch harder.
“Yah! Lady! What the hell do you think you are doing?”
“Don’t call me lady! There’s Teacher, Counselor, Ms. Han, or even Seri will do!” I throw him into the seat, “Stop calling me lady! Got it?”
He points his finger at me and pretends to slice my throat. I immediately grab it and twist it upside down. Living with two older brothers turned me into this unlady-like nut sack and probably is the prime reason why I haven’t found a boyfriend in ages. They sucked all of the grace out of me and pumped it into the likes of Girl’s Generation but that is a different story for another time.
“Go ahead, I dare you to try that again,” I say, gritting my teeth.
The whole classroom is quiet and all eyes are on Jiyong. He’s holding in his pain and I’m trying hard not to break the little punk’s finger. He pulls it away and glares at me, his jaw clenching. He mumbles under his breath, “Fucking lunatic.”
Kicking his shins, I return a smile to him and walk back to the front desk, calling out the next name. “Kim Hyuna, fourth seat.”
For the rest of the class period, I assign seats to the rest of the students but one thought remains in my head.
Kwon Jiyong was going to make this semester a living nightmare.
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