The "Something" Series: Season 2

Out of your Mind or Something?!: A Scene.

It’s been a couple of hours since Jamie was awoken by the screams of Grace and Kevin. Since then, he’s been awake. He rubs his eyes in frustration and tosses around the uncomfortable sofa. He makes the decision to get up from the sofa and walks to the kitchen.

He stops in place when he sees Kevin sitting on the island, drinking a small carton of chocolate milk. He slowly walks to the island and toward the counter to make a pot of coffee. Kevin watches him.

Jamie: I know you’re watching me.

Kevin: Why are you making coffee at 4 in the morning?

Jamie: Why are you up at 4 in the morning?

Nothing is said afterward. Jamie turns around toward the island after grabbing a mug from the cabinet. Jamie doesn’t look at Kevin as he pours the coffee into the mug.

Jamie: Just say it already.

Kevin: Why? I’m only going to waste my time telling you what I’ve been telling you these last couple of months…

Jamie: It’s really not what you think, Kevin.

Kevin: It’s exactly what I’m thinking, hyung! She’s here like nothing happened! And then you defend her after everything she’s put you through!

Jamie leans in close to Kevin on the island.

Jamie: Can you please keep your voice down? At least let her sleep through the night.

Kevin: Do you hear yourself? You literally don’t know who Grace is; she’s not the same person you knew back in New York! She left that life behind. Why are you holding onto something from the past?

Jamie can’t answer right away. He sighs.

Jamie: That night the three of us went to the bar on the pier, I took a walk on the boardwalk. There’s a cafe a couple of stores down from the bar, I walked in there and… she works there. I gave her my number. She didn’t call me, her cousin did, which is who Shawn is with right now–

Kevin shakes his head in confusion, holding his hands up for Jamie to stop.

Kevin: My point is that she put you through hell, yet you see her once and bam… none of that matters anymore.

Jamie: I appreciate that you are looking out for me, but I know what I’m doing. I wasn’t going to leave her at the bar without a place to stay for the ngiht–

Kevin: Why not? She left you in New York by yourself…

Jamie grows frustrated.

Jamie: We weren’t together when she did that–

Kevin: No, but it wasn’t long after she told you about–

Jamie: *stern* Don’t.

Kevin scoffs; his voice gets louder.

Kevin: Do you see what I mean? How do you have the woman who did that to you laying in your bed like nothing happened? She has the right to do whatever she wants to do with her body, but you have the right to protect your heart.

Jamie doesn’t say anything, he just takes his mug and begins to walk out of the kitchen.

Kevin: Hyung–

Jamie stops and turns back to look at Kevin.

Kevin: If you felt like you had to hide this from me, then you know this isn’t a good idea.

Jamie turns away and walks out of the kitchen.

The sun is up for the day and Grace and Jamie exit the house and walk to the car in the parking lot. Nothing is said between them. Before Jamie can open the passenger’s door, Grace opens it and enters the car. Jamie doesn’t take it personally; he proceeds to walk around the car to the driver’s side and enters.

Jamie looks at the GPS on his phone as he drives on the highway. Grace looks out of the window; she hasn’t said anything for the entire ride. Jamie keeps looking at her direction, anxious. He takes in a deep breath and quickly lets it out.

Jamie: Are you okay? Are you feeling hot?

Grace: No, I’m fine.


Grace: Thank you again for allowing me to stay over your house for the night.

Jamie: It was nothing. Again, I feel responsible for Shawn going off like that. It’s not like him to do that…

Grace: Skylar can be very persuasive.

Grace finally looks at Jamie.

Grace: She persuaded you to go to The Voyage.

Jamie: She seemed to have persuade you to go as well.

Grace chuckles and looks forward towards the highway.

Grace: Touche.

Jamie smiles without even realizing he is. He clears his throat.

Jamie: I also apologize for Kevin’s behavior. That was very much uncalled for.

Grace: Hey, you can’t help your friends that are just trying to protect you… Ari would’ve killed you before killing me if it was the other way around.

Jamie: I’m… legitimately afraid of Ari.

This makes Grace genuinely laugh and smile. Jamie feels less tensed up.

Jamie: *looks at GPS* Do I keep going up this road?

Grace: *nods* Mhm.

Jamie continues to drive. Moments later, Grace turns on the radio to ease the silence between them. Jamie is relieved.

They eventually get to Grace’s place. Jamie stops the car in front of the condo where Grace lives. There’s a silence between the two for a moment.

Grace: Thanks for the ride home, I really appreciate it.

Jamie: It’s the least I can do.

Grace smile and begins to exit the car. Jamie walks her, never taking his eyes off of her. As she gets out of the car, she turns around to smile through the window; Jamie returns the smile back. Grace then proceeds to walk towards the condo. When she enters, Jamie lets out the breath is was keeping in.

Jamie walks into the front door of the vacation house. He hears laughter coming from the kitchen; he immediately knows who it is. He speed walks towards the kitchen. He’s not surprised to see Shawn standing over the island talking to Kevin.

Jamie: *stern* Ya~

Shawn and Kevin look at Jamie.

Shawn: Hyung! Where were you?

Jamie: *sarcastically* Oh nowhere important, just had to drop off Grace since she couldn’t go home last night.

Shawn: Did you spend some quality time with her?

Jamie: *yells* Does it look like I’m joking with you, Shawn?!

Shawn walks over to the fridge to take out a bottle of water; unbothered.

Shawn: What has you in such a bad mood today?

Jamie: You ditched me at the bar last night!

Shawn: You were with Grace though, it couldn’t have been that bad…

Jamie: Not only did you ditch me and leave me with Grace, you went and stayed over her cousin’s place that you had just meant hours before! Are you out of your mind or something?!

Shawn: Hyung, Skylar is… so amazing.

Jamie: *yells louder* I don’t care, Shawn! My point is you were irresponsible and wreckless and left me for a woman!

Shawn: You were the one that tagged me along so you can meet up with Grace! I just gave you two some alone time!

Jamie shakes his head and walks out of the kitchen. Shawn, now defensive and annoyed, follows Jamie. Kevin tries to stop Shawn, but is unsuccessful.

Shawn: I don’t know what’s your problem! You had a whole night with Grace! What happened? Did she break your heart some more?

Kevin: Hyung!

Jamie doesn’t even turn around, he just keeps walking towards the front door.

Shawn: If you had such a miserable night, then maybe that’s your sign that you should let her go! Forget her! Don’t be angry at me–

Jamie: *yells* Ya!

The house gets quiet; nobody makes a sound. Jamie grabs his keys and opens the front door.

Kevin: Hyung!

The door slams shut.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Something To Explain: A Scene.

Jamie and Grace pull up to a house in a Santa Monica neighborhood. Jamie turns the car off and unbuckles his seatbelt. He quickly gets out of the car to open up Grace’s car door. She unbuckles her seat belt and holds Jamie’s hand as she exits the car. Jamie closes the door behind her and they begin to walk toward the house.

Grace: This is a nice place you’re staying in.

Jamie: Thanks; the guys were the ones that booked it for the summer.

Jamie opens the front door of the house and lets Grace walk in first. She looks around before Jamie closes the door behind them. She follows Jamie toward a staircase.

A door opens and the lights are turned on; it’s Jamie’s bedroom. Grace looks around, a bit nervous to be in here. Jamie awkwardly stands at the door before Grace sits down on a chair in the room.

Jamie: So, uhm, I figured you could sleep in here for the night and I can sleep on the couch.

Grace: You don’t gotta be kicked out of your own room; I can sleep on the sofa–

Jamie shakes his head no.

Jamie: It’s completely okay.

He walks over to his dresser and looks through the drawers. He pulls out a t-shirt and a pair of shorts. He walks over to Grace to hand them to her.

Jamie: You can freshen up in the bathroom if you’d like.

Grace: Thanks, Jamie.

Jamie nods his head and closes the bedroom door. When he does, he lets out a deep breath.

In the middle of the night, Kevin walks down the hallway and opens the door to Shawn’s room. He tits his head when he doesn’t see Shawn in his bed. He closes the door and proceeds to walk toward Jamie’s room.

Kevin: *knocks on door* Hyung?

No answer. Kevin puts his ear to the door before knocking on it again.

Kevin: Hyung?

When he doesn’t get an answer, he rolls his eyes and slowly opens the door of Jamie’s bedroom. He calls for Jamie before entering it.

Kevin: Hyung, Shawn didn’t come home tonight, do you know where he went?

No answer. Kevin grows frustrated and sighs, walking towards the bed.

Kevin: Hyung! Wake up!

He pulls the covers away from the bed and immediately notices that the person in Jamie’s bed wasn’t Jamie. He yells in shock, waking up Grace and startling her. She screams in horror.

The scream echoes throughout the house, which wakes up Jamie in the living room. He jumps up, waking from his sleep.

Jamie: Grace?!

Jamie runs up the stairs towards his room. He opens his bedroom door and stops when he sees Kevin standing there. Grace is wrapped up in a blanket on the opposite side of the room. Kevin looks at Jamie, confused.

Kevin: Hyung?

Jamie swallows hard. He doesn’t answer back, he just looks at Grace.

Jamie: *to Grace* Are you okay?

Grace nods her head. Jamie proceeds to look at Kevin.

Jamie: Kevin–

Kevin scoffs and walks out of Jamie’s room. Jamie looks back at Grace.

Jamie: I’m sorry.

Grace: It’s… fine.

Jamie doesn’t say anything back. He just closes the bedroom door as he exits. Grace wears an unsettled look on her face.

Jamie runs down the staircase towards Kevin’s room. He catches the door before it is slammed shut by Kevin. He walks in, closing it behind him.

Jamie: Kevin, let me explain–

Kevin: Explain what? How the woman that broke your heart is in your bed all of a sudden? She must really have you wrapped around her finger…

Jamie: It’s not like that–

Kevin: I thought Shawn was incompetent when it came to women but my god, you must be the most stupid man I’ve ever met!

Jamie: *stern* Ya~

Kevin: No! Don’t tell me I should show you respect as my senior! I am talking to you as a friend, Jamie. How the hell did you even know she was in Santa Monica?

Jamie: I-I didn’t. I mean, I did, but I didn’t–

Kevin laughs and shakes his head.

Kevin: I’m not going to sit here and watch you destroy yourself again over a woman with issues like Grace–

Jamie: *snaps* Ya! Don’t talk about her like that!

Kevin: Whatever, Jamie. You can see your way out of my room.

Kevin turns his back toward Jamie.

Jamie: Maybe when Shawn comes home from her cousin’s house, you can ask him why Grace is here in the first place.

Kevin doesn’t respond. Jamie leaves Kevin’s room.

When Jamie enters the living room, he stops in place when he sees Grace sitting there, still in his t-shirt and shorts. Jamie takes a deep breath and walks slowly toward the couch. He sits on the opposite side of where Grace is. Nothing is said.

Grace: Maybe coming here was a bad idea.

Jamie: You did nothing wrong. I apologize for how tonight went.

Grace: No, no. I should just go while I can–

Before Grace can leave the couch, Jamie grabs her by the arm. She’s startled at the touch, which Jamie notices right away. He immediately takes his hand back.

Jamie: Just… stay for the night. I will drive you home in the morning.

Grace doesn’t say anything right away. She sighs loudly.

Grace: Okay.

Jamie nods as Grace walks back up the staircase, towards Jamie’s room.

Grace: Goodnight, Jamie.

Jamie looks up towards the staircase.

Jamie: Goodnight.

The door to Jamie’s room closes. Jamie cups his face with his hands; exhausted from the night.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

21-Something-Questions: A Scene.

Grace crosses her legs as she sits on a bench close to the railing of the boardwalk. Jamie is seen walking from a food cart after ordering food. He walks towards where Grace is sitting. He hands her food and a drink. She accepts it.

Grace: Thank you.

Jamie nods his head and looks out towards the beach.

Jamie: The beach looks so different at night.

Grace: It’s always the prettiest when the sun goes down. During the day it just looks all dirty and crowded with people.

Jamie: Once my family and I took a trip to Jeju Island and the beaches there were breathtaking. I’ve never seen a beach as pretty as that ever since.

Grace looks at Jamie as he speaks, mesmerized. She looks quickly towards the beach when he stops talking, eating french fries. He looks at her when she’s not looking, mesmerized as well.

Grace: Beaches are never that pretty here in America, so one day I will love to go someplace where the water is crystal clear and the sand is soft-looking.

Jamie doesn’t answer back; he hopes that Grace doesn’t stop talking. She does, and there’s a brief awkward silence between them. Jamie just wants to keep Grace talking after not hearing from her, or even knowing where she’s been since he left for Korea back in January.

Jamie: So what made you start working at the cafe on the boardwalk?

Grace: *scoffs* Well, I needed money. I used to work as a barista at a Starbucks near my college when I was a student. So I figured it would be the easiest way to make money while I’m here.

Jamie: *curious* Oh; do you still own the company back in New York?

Grace: *nods* My mother is helping me run the company while I’m here, but I’m still in charge of choreography.

Jamie: Do you still dance?

Grace: Yeah, I still make the dances up for my dancers and–

Jamie: No, no; do you still dance?

Grace looks at Jamie as he asks the question. They share a moment looking at one another.

Grace: I do. I dance with a team here.

Jamie: *smiles* I’m glad to hear that you’re still dancing.

Grace looks back at Jamie.

Grace: You’re still in law?

Jamie: *nods* I am. I’m under a different firm though. The cases are minor; nothing that requires too much traveling outside of the country.

Grace: That’s good. You can be with your family more these days.

Jamie nods. Grace turns her head to continue eating her food and drinking her soda. Jamie doesn’t take his eyes off of her.

Jamie: How’s Willow?

Grace freezes in place. She doesn’t answer right away; it’s like she has to think about what to answer with.

Grace: She’s doing well. She’s starting Kindergarten in September, which is crazy to think about.

This makes Jamie smile wide. Grace knows that hearing about Willow makes him the happiest. She knows he really cares about her.

Grace: But yeah. *smiles* She’s something else. She’s so fascinated with nature and is literally a flower child. She’s always helping Max’s wife plant new flowers, and always shows me her plants in her bedroom whenever I video chat with her. But she’s doing good though.

Jamie: I’m glad to hear that.

Grace looks down at her body before she looks back up to Jamie.

Grace: How’s your family doing?

Jamie: Everyone’s doing well. Mina and her husband are having their third child. Lia is getting married in the Fall. My mother is very excited about all these events coming up.

Grace: That’s great. I’m… glad you’re able to be with them, y’know?

Jamie nods. Silence.

Grace: So, you said that you and your friends are here for a vacation?

Jamie: *nods* Yeah. Shawn and Kevin wanted to do a guy’s trip before Kevin settles down… Shawn and I think that he’s thinking about proposing to his girlfriend.

Grace: *shocked* Oh, wow! That’s great. That’s exciting. Seems like everyone is getting married these days. Ari is getting married next year.

Jamie: That’s nice. Her fiance seems like a good man, I–

He stops in his tracks. Grace looks at him when he does. Jamie doesn’t even want to pretend or lie anymore.

Jamie: I briefly met him when I went to Ari to ask about you before I left New York.

The conversation ends there. In a way, Jamie regrets bringing that up since it caused the conversation to stop.

Grace: We should probably get back to the bar to check on our company.

Grace gets up and Jamie follows; regretful.

When Jamie notices that Grace is finished with her drink and food, he kindly gets up and takes her trash for her. He walks towards the trash can to toss it out. He turns around and is surprised Grace is still standing with him. They begin to walk back to the bar.

Jamie: So, you have family in California, I’m assuming?

Grace nods her head.

Grace: My uncle lives in San Diego; Skylar moved from there a couple of years ago, I believe? So I’m staying with her. Love her, but she can be a lot to handle.

Jamie: Really?

Grace: Oh yeah. She has no responsibility bone in her body, but I’m grateful she’s allowing me to stay with her.

Jamie: At least you just have her; I have Shawn and Kevin to look after.

Grace laughs and shakes her head. She doesn’t respond back through the rest of the walk back to the bar.

They both return to the Voyage Bar and try to look for Skylar and Shawn. They look around the crowded bar, not seeing them anywhere.

Grace: Skylar?

Jamie: Shawn?

No answer. Both Grace and Jamie walk out of the bar to get away from the loud music playing inside. Grace takes out her phone and calls Skylar; Jamie walks away and calls Shawn on his phone.

Jamie: Ya! Where are you?

Shawn: *slurs* Hyung! What’s up?

Jamie: Where are you? I can’t find you at the bar–

Shawn: Oh! About that…

A few feet away, Grace is talking to Skylar on the phone.

Grace: Skylar? Where the fuck are you?!

Skylar: The question is where were you with Mr. Jamie!

She laughs over the phone, but Grace is not having it.

Grace: I’m not playing with you. We have to get you home–

Skylar: No need, cuzzo! About going home…

A few moments later, both Grace and Jamie walk back to each other, getting off the phone with their rides home.

Jamie: Did you hear from Skylar?

Grace: I did, and if you didn’t hear from Shawn–

Jamie: Oh I did…

Jamie cocks his eyebrows up, and Grace gets the message. Grace rubs her eyes and lets out a deep sigh.

Grace: I’m not going home to listen to Skylar and Shawn *air quotes* have fun with each other.

Jamie’s face flashes red.

Jamie: You can stay at my place for the night if you aren’t comfortable going back home.

Grace looks at Jamie, which makes him even more nervous.

Jamie: I mean if you have another place you want to stay that’s completely fine, I can drive you there if you like–

Grace: Jamie.

Jamie stops talking and waits for Grace to speak.

Grace: Thanks, I’ll stay with you for the night…

Jamie tightly smiles and walks with Grace down the boardwalk. Jamie dabs the sweat falling down from his neck.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Something About Grace & Jamie: A Scene.

Jamie stands in front of the bathroom mirror trying to put his contacts on. He keeps failing since he is shaky and nervous. Shawn walks toward the doorway of the bathroom, looking at Jamie getting ready.

Shawn: So, what are we going to tell Kevin when he gets back from the market?

Jamie: That we’re going out to the bar tonight.

Shawn: But wouldn’t he want to come with us?

Jamie: We’ll tell him we’re going out to talk to women– *poke his eye* Ouch!

Jamie rubs his eye with his hand before trying to put his contact lens back into his eye. Shawn shakes his head.

Shawn: *teases* She’s already getting to you, hyung?

Jamie: Ya~

Jamie tries to get Shawn out of the doorway until they hear the front door of the house open and close.

Kevin: *calls out* Jamie hyung? Shawn hyung?

Both men walk out of the hallway and see Kevin standing near the doorway with a couple of bags of groceries. Kevin puts them down on the floor and looks at the two men, clearly dressed up for an occasion.

Kevin: Why are you two so dressed up?

Shawn: *nervous* We, uhm–

Jamie: We’re going to the Voyage Bar tonight.

Kevin: Why?

Jamie: We’re going to try to put ourselves out there.

As Kevin places the groceries on the island in the kitchen, he turns around and questions his hyungs.

Kevin: But it didn’t go well the last time you guys did that.

Jamie: We know what we’re getting into now; before we didn’t.

Kevin rolls his eyes and starts putting food away.

Kevin: Well, count me out. The last time I went to the bar, Joo-Ah was upset.

Shawn: Are you sure? I mean we could–

Jamie intently stares at Shawn, not wanting him to say anything else. Shawn catches the hint.

Shawn: We, as in me and Jamie, can go out and you can call Joo-Ah and do like a distance dinner date!

Jamie’s surprised that Shawn would think of something so sweet and sentimental. Kevin considers the thought.

Kevin: You know, that doesn’t sound like a bad idea!

Kevin walks out of the kitchen to go grab his phone from the living room. Shawn is surprised at his own lie.

Shawn: I’m good!

Jamie rolls his eyes and gathers his things so that they can leave. Jamie nervously puts on his bracelet before heading out the door with Shawn.

Skylar: You’re seriously not wearing that out tonight, are you?

Skylar stands in the doorway of Grace’s bedroom, looking at Grace who is wearing a pair of ripped jean shorts and a t-shirt.

Grace: *looks at her outfit* What’s wrong with it?

Skylar: *disgusted* Everything.

Skylar walks into Grace’s room and looks through her closet. Grace sighs.

Grace: I don’t know why you’re making a night out to the Voyage such a big deal…

Skylar: Because it’s my birthday month and I want to celebrate it every weekend leading up to my birthday!

Grace shakes her head.

Grace: So what is “your vision” for tonight’s outfit?

Skylar pulls out a red dress and a pair of open-toe red heels. Grace’s eyebrows cock upon her face.

Grace: Seriously?

Skylar: Yeah, seriously! What if you meet a cute guy at the bar?

Grace: *annoyed* Only drunk tourists go to that bar; why would I want to pick up a guy from there?

Skylar throws the outfit on the bed, annoyed at Grace’s attitude.

Skylar: Grace, I just want to go out with you for a night. I feel like you never want to do anything with me and it’s like, shit we live in the same house and we barely hang out. So for my birthday, it would be nice if my only cousin would go out and celebrate with me without feeling like this is a chore for her.

Grace doesn’t say anything, she just walks towards the bed where the outfit is on and takes it. Skylar smiles.

Skylar: Thank you, Grace!

Grace: *from the other room* You should become an actress with all that drama you carry.

Shawn and Jamie walk towards the Voyage Bar on the pier. Jamie looks around, visibly nervous. Shawn notices and pats Jamie on the back to grab his attention.

Shawn: Are you okay?

Jamie: Yeah, I’m alright… I’m just going to take this night for whatever it becomes.

Shawn: Are you ready to see Grace though?

Jamie doesn’t answer. He takes a deep breath and walks toward the bar. Shawn follows Jamie.

Skylar and Grace walk up to the Voyage Bar. Skylar, excited to go inside, grabs Grace by the arm to help drag her toward the bar. Grace tries to fight her cousin.

Grace: For God’s sake, relax woman.

Skylar doesn’t listen to Grace and continues to pull her into the bar. Once they enter, Grace looks around and immediately is uncomfortable.

Skylar: Look at the people in here tonight!

Grace: Skylar!

Skylar begins to dance on the dance floor as Grace attempts to follow her.

At the bar, Shawn looks towards the dance floor and notices the women dancing. He gets excited and gets up from the bar.

Shawn: Looks like the dance floor is where it’s at for the night!

Jamie, still sitting at the bar, tries to go after Shawn.

Jamie: Shawn!

As he attempts to follow Shawn towards the floor, he bumps into someone who is also walking through the dance floor.

Jamie: I am so sorry, miss–

The woman turns around slowly and faces Jamie. She looks up, completely mortified to see Jamie.

Jamie micks the woman’s face, realizing it’s Grace.

Grace: Jamie?

Jamie doesn’t answer back quickly; he processes what he sees in front of him. He shakes his head, trying to come back to reality.

Jamie: H-hi, Grace.

They both don’t say or do anything else until Jamie hears Shawn call out from him.

Shawn: Hyung!

He walks towards Jamie with a woman. Grace widens her eyes to realize the woman is Skylar.

Grace: Skylar?

Shawn looks at Grace, who is shocked to hear that she knows the woman accompanying him.

Shawn: You know each other?

Grace: She’s my cousin…

Jamie stands there taking in the situation. His eyes go to Skylar, who is now looking at him.

Skylar: *shocked* Oh! You must be–

Shawn: That’s Jamie.

Jamie nervously waves at Skylar and then immediately looks at Grace. Grace looks upset.

Grace: I need some air–

Grace walks out of the bar and Jamie follows her. Skylar looks a little discouraged and Shawn notices.

Shawn: Jamie will see if she’s okay.

Jamie walks out of the bar and sees Grace sitting on the bench near the boardwalk. He walks over to Grace and sits down next to her. She looks at him, then quickly looks towards the beach.

Jamie: *nervously* Are… are you okay?

Grace doesn’t answer back right away. Jamie looks down at his hands and then back at Grace when she takes a deep breath.

Grace: You didn’t have to do what my cousin says, y’know…

Jamie: I didn’t.

Grace looks uneasy and looks away from Jamie.

Jamie: But your cousin did call me with the number I gave you.

Grace rolls her eyes and scoffs.

Grace: She’s… a handful.

Jamie: No wonder Shawn’s hanging out with her; they are basically the same person.

This makes Grace laugh; Jamie feels accomplished and smiles at Grace.

Grace: Sorry if she dragged you into this. This is kinda what she does.

Jamie: No need to apologize… I did agree to come tonight, so–

Grace finally looks at Jamie, and Jamie looks at her back.

Grace: I just wish Skylar picked a place that wasn’t the Voyage Bar…

Jamie: *laughs* I don’t know what is about this place anyway… the drinks aren’t that great.

Grace: The food isn’t either.

Jamie gets up from the bench and gives a hand to Grace.

Jamie: Let’s go someplace with good drinks and food.

Grace smiles and grabs Jamie’s hand. They both let go when they stand next to each other and walk along the boardwalk.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

“Am I Missing Something?”: A Scene.

Shawn and Kevin sit on the balcony that is looking out towards Santa Monica. Shawn is sipping on a cold iced tea while Kevin sits across from him, applying sunscreen on his face.

Moments later, Jamie walks onto the balcony with a pizza box, placing it on the table in between the guys.

Jamie: American pizza may not be as amazing as Pizza Heaven’s potato pizza, but it’s sure a close second.

Kevin: Hyung, I think you’re the only person that keeps that pizza place in business the way you order potato pizza all the time.

Jamie shakes his head as the guys take a slice of pizza each. Jamie pulls a chair to the table and sits in between Shawn and Kevin.

Shawn: *to Kevin* Have you called your mom– I mean Joo-Ah– yet?

Kevin rolls his eyes at the comment as Shawn begins to laugh. Jamie moderates the two.

Jamie: Ya, leave him alone. At least he has a woman back at home waiting for his return.

Shawn: *offensive* What are you talking about; you don’t either!

Jamie: You don’t see me teasing him about Joo-Ah though.

Kevin continues to laugh at the banter. Shawn finally shuts up and continues to eat his pizza.

Jamie: How is Joo-Ah doing, Kevin?

Kevin: She’s okay. She hasn’t been feeling good lately; she said it might be stress about work.

Jamie: It definitely can happen to a person.

As the guys continue to eat, Jamie’s cellphone begins to vibrate on the table. He looks down at it, a bit confused that the number is a local, American number.

Jamie: Huh?

Jamie gets up from the table and walks back into the house before he answers the phone.

Jamie: Hello?

It takes a while for him to realize it’s a woman on the other line.

Caller: Hi! Idk if this is who I think I’m talking to so I just wanted to see if it actually was! *pause* You don’t really sound attractive like I thought you would…

Jamie: I’m… sorry? Who is–

Caller: Omg no I totally didn’t mean it that way, it’s just that–

Jamie looks at the phone number once again and then places the phone back to his ear.

Jamie: I’m sorry miss, you might have the wrong number…

Caller: Is this not Jamie?

Jamie doesn’t say anything back right away. He’s shocked that the woman over the phone knows his name.

Jamie: This is he… I’m sorry, but who is this?

The woman on the phone curses at her mistake.

Skylar: I’m sorry, where are my manners; I’m Skylar.

Jamie: Nice to meet you, Skylar, but you still may have the wrong number, I–

Skylar: I found your number in my cousin’s room and needed to see if it was really true, or if she’s picking up women now at the bar or something…

Jamie: I really don’t think I gave my number to your… cousin?

Skylar: Do you not know a woman named Grace?

Jamie’s eyes widen. He suddenly remembers the encounter he had with Grace at the cafe a couple of weeks ago where he gave her his number.

Jamie: Grace Ashmore?

Skylar: Yeah! Y’know, short, skinny, red-head. That’s my cousin. I don’t know why she left your number on her dresser, so I’m just helping her out and calling you for her, since I know she wasn’t going to do it…

The comment stings Jamie a bit. He takes a deep breath before he continues the conversation.

Jamie: I’m sorry, that number was meant for Grace.

Skylar: Oh for sure! I’m not calling you to steal her from me! I’m trying to see if I can get you guys to finally meet up!

Jamie looks concerned at the thought. He doesn’t want to do anything that Grace doesn’t want to do.

Jamie: I don’t think that’s a good idea.

Skylar: Why not? Listen, Grace has always gotten numbers from random strangers, and I end up finding her tossing them out because she’s not interested. I don’t know what it is about you, but she kept yours. Grace isn’t the type to call people if she’s interested; it’s probably why she hasn’t gotten laid in God knows how long…

Jamie squeezes his eyes shut; this girl was truly related to Grace by the way her personality resembles her over the phone.

Jamie: Miss…?

Skylar: Oh! Sorry! But yeah! Look I know she’s not the easiest girl to get a hold of, but clearly, she’s been contemplating calling you back if she kept your number, so I am doing the liberty of doing it for her! How about I bring Grace to the Voyage Bar on the pier? She’ll thank me later.

Jamie looks up when he sees Shawn walking back in from the balcony. He panics, needing to end the conversation now.

Jamie: Yeah, that sounds good.

Skylar: Awesome! We’ll be there tonight at 8! Don’t wait up!

Jamie hangs up the phone and looks at Shawn, who is looking at him back.

Shawn: Who was that?

Jamie: Nobody.

Shawn: Your face is red; you were talking to a woman!

Jamie: Ya, it’s not like that…

Shawn: Look at you swooning over a girl! Finally! Are you going out to meet up with her? How’d you find her? Hyung, does she–

Jamie: *stern* Ya!

Shawn stops talking. Jamie looks towards the balcony, where Kevin is still sitting on his phone.

Jamie: You have to promise not to tell Kevin.

Shawn: Why?

Jamie: Because I will never hear the end of it from him.

Jamie grabs Shawn and brings him further in the room.

Jamie: Grace is in California.

Shawn laughs, not believing what Jamie just told him.

Shawn: Right, and I’ll meet my next girlfriend in California as well. Come on, what’s the deal?

Jamie: I’m not lying to you. Grace is in Santa Monica. She works at the cafe a couple of stores down from Voyage Bar. I bumped into her that night we went to that bar.

Shawn: *shocked* What?! What is she doing here? Was that Grace on the phone?!

Jamie: No, it was her cousin.

Shawn: Why would her cousin call you?

Jamie: Because Grace left my number on her dresser.

Shawn shakes his head, trying to understand what was going on.

Shawn: Hold on, you gave Grace your number and her cousin called you?

Jamie: Look I know this doesn’t make sense but… I have to see this through.

Shawn: But wouldn’t Grace have called you if she wanted to meet up with you?

Jamie doesn’t think about that. Shawn looks at Jamie, now being a bit more serious.

Shawn: Hyung, are you sure you want to go back down this path? You were pretty messed up over everything that happened between you and her…

Jamie: I know but… I have to at least talk to Grace one more time, and I feel like this is my only opportunity to do so.

Shawn doesn’t say anything right away. He takes in a deep breath.

Jamie: Come with me to the bar tonight.

Shawn: Wait, tonight?!

Jamie: Yes tonight! It’s going to be her and her cousin—

Shawn: Is her cousin cute?

Jamie: *taken back* I don’t know, Shawn! I never met her before! I would rather have you there with me instead of hearing Kevin all night…

Shawn: Count me in! Maybe her cousin is cute and likes Korean men like Grace does.

Jamie shoves Shawn as he laughs to himself.

Shawn: How are we going to get pass Kevin though? He’s going to want to know where we’re going tonight.

Jamie looks back at the balcony to where Kevin is.

Jamie: I don’t know, but I’ll think of something.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Focus on Something: A Monologue.

I walk out towards the balcony of the condo and look out into the California scenery in the morning. The mornings were the best time to be outside; it wasn’t too hot yet and the streets weren’t crowded with people and cars traveling in the city. California was a lot different than New York City, but not too different.

Whenever I think of New York, I think of Ari and remember just how much I miss her. I couldn’t help but call her on this warm morning, although she will probably hate me for calling her before noon.

“Bitch, it’s 10AM here, what the fuck are you calling me at 7AM?” Ari answers the phone right away. I couldn’t help but roll my eyes and smile. Same bitch named Ari.

“Well good morning to you too, Ari,” I said back. Ari sighs on the phone and wrestles around. She was most likely still in bed.

“Morning, Grace. What’s up?” Ari finally responded as I heard her possibly rolling in between her bedsheets.

“Nothing much, just on the balcony before I go and, you know…”

“Grace,” Ari began. “Saying the word “therapy” isn’t a sin. You’ve been going for almost a year now; why are you still so weird about it?” Ari was right. I’ve been going to therapy for about a year now, yet it was still something I only told Ari about.

Ari was the one that drove me to my first session when I was still in New York. I can still vividly remember her using the spare key for my apartment and dragging me out of my bed and into her car to go for my appointment. I was pissed at her in the moment when she did that, but I also am thankful she did. Because of that, I’ve been quite serious about going to my appointments on time and having them frequently. I guess it’s still something so personal that I wouldn’t want anyone to know.

I walked back in from the balcony and into my room to start getting ready for the day.

“I don’t know, I just am I guess…” I answered. I put my phone on speaker and placed it on my nightstand before walking towards the closet.

“Well, tons of people go for therapy, and if it’s helping you keep your shit together, then it’s a good thing,” Ari preached. I rolled my eyes and smiled at her words. I take out a dress from my closet and place it on the bed.

“Enough about me though,” I said, changing the subject. “Are you and Dean going to do some wine-tasting today?”

“You fucking bet we are! We are so pumped. I might be more excited to do this than go shopping for the wedding dress,” Ari answered. Ari and Dean got engaged a couple of days before I left the city. I was supposed to tell Ari that day I was leaving New York but I didn’t want to ruin her moment or her engagement day. I feel bad not being able to be there with her as she preps for her big day, but she knows I’m always here for her in spirit… and on Facetime whenever she’s indecisive about something.

I walk over to my nightstand to grab my keys and my wallet from the drawer, and I’m instantly reminded of the piece of paper that I put in there a couple of nights ago. Jamie’s number. I take it out and read the digits on the paper and Jamie’s name underneath it.

“Whenever you’re ready.”

“Hello? Grace?” Ari called for me on the phone. I snapped out of my thoughts and focused my attention back on my phone.

“Yeah, sorry; what was that?” I asked. I dropped the piece of paper on th nightstand and grabbed what I needed instead.

“I said I’ll talk to you later; since I’m up I might as well make breakfast for Dean and I,” Ari said. We both said ou goodbyes and ended the phone call. I took a deep breath and walked out of my room.

I passed by Skylar in the living room, hoping I could walk out without her stopping me to help her find something but yet again, SKy got me where she needed me.

“Oh! Grace!” Skylar stopped me in my tracks.

“Sky, I really have to get going, I’m a little busy today–“

“Can I please borrow your sunglasses for the beach today?” Skylar asked. I sighed, knowing this isn’t the first time Skylar has asked to borrow something of mine.

“Don’t you have your own pair?” I asked.

“I have to go get them fixed, some guy stepped on them the last time I went to beach… he was cute, I should’ve gotten his number…” I rolled my eyes and sighed even louder. Sky was such a horny 20-something year old at times; I can’t believe that I was once also in my 20’s doing the same thing.

“Whatever Sky, they’re in my nightstand drawer; don’t lose or break these!” I warned her. Sky sucked her teeth and began walking towards my room. I used the opportunity to book it towards the front door.

“So how has your week been, Grace?” Chelsea asked me. Chelsea is my therapist that I started to see once I came to Cali. Chelsea and my therapist in New York actually know each other, so when I told my old therapist I was moving to California and didn’t know what to do regards to staying in therapy, she recommended me see Chelsea. I understand why; Chelsea was someone that allowed you to speak when you needed to speak about things, but she also would tell me when it was time to stop messing around and be honest with what was going on.

I sat across from Chelsea with my legs crossed on the cushioned chair. I took a deep breath before starting.

“The week has been alright. Work at the cafe has been the same and Sharon is still uptight most of my shifts…” I recapped the week.

“Has things at home with Skylar improved?”

“Yeah, for the most part” I begin to answer. “She seems to be more aware about our space and treating it with respect… she tries to not have any guys over when I’m there since the condo is pretty small.” Chelsea nodded her head and continued typing on her computer. I looked out her office window to see the sun peaking in through the shades.

“Come on,” I whined as I covered my head with the comforter. His laugh echoed in the bedroom.

“Jagiya, you have to get up! We have plans for the day,” Jamie said as he sat on the side of the bed I was in. I took the covers off of my face and saw him. He had his gentle smile on, and the sun coming in from the window was making him glow.

“Can’t we just postpone them?” I asked, still quite sleepy. Jamie sighed and then lifted the covers off of me. Before I went to grab them back, he gets into the bed and under the covers with me. I was confused. He looked at me and smiled.

“Fine, we can stay in bed for another hour, but then we absolutely have to get ready, okay?” he said. I smiled at him and cuddled in his chest.

“Something on your mind, Grace?” Chelsea said. I look back at her, realizing I wasn’t paying attention to what she was saying.

“No, no; I’m alright–“

“Grace,” Chelsea stopped typing. “You’re typically more proactive in our meetings, but today you seem to be a little distant mentally. Is there something you want to talk about?” I hate how right Chelsea could be at times. I haven’t been this absent in a session since–

“Jamie,” I said without context. Chelsea raised an eyebrow.

“Jamie? Your ex-boyfriend from South Korea?”

“Jamie’s in California, and I don’t know how to feel about that,” I admitted. “He showed up at my job one night and–“

“Did anyone tell him you were now living here?” Chelsea interrupted before I continued. I shook my head no.

“He seemed just as surprised to see me at the cafe as well… we didn’t speak for long since he had to get going and, well, Sharon being a bitch, but…” I had to rethink that night in my head again. Maybe I was happy he somewhat found me here in Cali, but a part of me wishes I was still hidden in my own universe.

“How did you feel seeing him for the first time in a really long time?” Chelsea asked. I looked at her, not really knowing how to answer her. How did I feel finally seeing him after so long?

“The dreams came back. I’m not really sleeping that well because of it,” I said. Chelsea nodded her head, finally typing on her computer again. She stops for a moment and then looks directly at me.

“You’ve made so much progress within these last couple of months. You’ve been going to the AA meetings I spoke to you about, you’ve been following up with your medication and appointments well, and I have to say: you haven’t brought up your ex-boyfriend in a session for quite some time now.” I knew Chelsea was talking to me more than just my therapist at this point. She was talking to me as the person who saw me probably at my lowest. She was the person who I had on call when I relapsed and was hospitalized a couple of weeks into living here. She was the person that would make sure I checked in with her when I was trying to get back on my feet. I know this portion of our therapy session was more personal than the other things we spoke about. “Grace, you have to do what’s right for you. From what I know, Jamie brings back a lot of negative memories from your past, and it’s easy to get caught up in that once more now that you know he’s in California. If you got the closure you needed already, then he is just another human being in the same state. You don’t have to get closure if you were already in the process of getting it on your own.”

I leaned back on the chair and sighed. I know I was doing a lot better knowing that Jamie didn’t know where I was and that I didn’t know where he was either. Jamie represents my old life, the one that nearly destroyed me inside and out.

“Also,” Chelsea continued. I looked back at her, wondering what she was going to say next. “You have Willow to think about. She’s getting bigger, and she’s going to need her mother to be in a good mental space to help her get through her childhood smoothly.”

Willow. I couldn’t help but begin tearing up when I heard her name. The fact of the matter is is that my relationship with WIllow has improved so much since I started therapy and since I started to leave my old life behind me. It still kills me that I wasn’t able to be in New York when she started her first day of pre-school earlier this year, but I made sure I’ve been there for her if she ever needed me. I was always just a phone call away.

“Yeah,” I simply said. I knew that if i wanted to contact Jamie again, I would’ve done so by now. Maybe my soul already was telling me it wasn’t the smartest thing to do. I have to go and throw his number out when I get home.

But I guess Skylar already did when she got my sunglasses from the nightstand earlier. Better he than me, I guess.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

California Livin’ or Something: A Monologue.

I woke up to the sun hitting my face. The curtains were slightly blowing from the morning breeze. I rubbed the sleepiness out of my eyes and turned around to face the other side of the bed. I see him laying there, under the mountain of blankets. I slowly pulled them away from his face to see him.

He wasn’t there, and I panic.

I wake up when I hear the alarm go off on my nightstand. I looked around my room frantically, not realizing that it was just me in my room. These fucking dreams again? I threw the covers off of my body and got it out of bed. I checked the time on my phone; it was 9AM. You definitely need coffee.

Before reaching for my glasses on my nightstand, I see the piece of paper that I left there last night. I can’t help but feel the last couple of months flash before my eyes. I never would’ve thought that the worries and life I had back in New York would carry here in Cali. It’s like the higher-ups in life just don’t want to give me a break.

My phone ringing is what got me out of my thoughts. I look down and see it was my mom.

“Hey mom,” I answered. I tried to kill, like, 5 birds with one stone by getting ready and still talking to my mother. What the hell is she even doing up? Isn’t it like 6AM in New York?

“Morning, Gracie,” she responded back. “I have that information you needed for the studio.” When I left New York, I told my mother that I wanted her to run the studio while I was gone. Let’s be honest: my mom was more passionate about the studio than I was. She practically grew up in that studio, and I could tell deep down that she really wanted to help run the business. I’m grateful for her passion for the craft; sometimes I feel like I have no passion for anything, not the way other people have it.

“Oh good, how’s everything going?” I asked as I hopped into my overall shorts.

“Things are going as planned; the recital for the end of school show is starting to look like a real dance,” Mom stated. “We will probably hold auditions after the 4th of July for incoming dancers for the Fall,” she continued. I’m listening as I brush out my very knotty hair. “How’s everything going with you? Your dad and I miss you.”

“I’m fine,” I responded quickly, not really wanting to get into this at this time. Or ever. “I’m getting ready for work, and then I have practice tonight.”

“Busy day ahead for you, huh?” my mom teased. I rolled my eyes as if she could see me do so. In some weird way, she knows when I do.

“I just try to stay as busy as possible,” I said as I slipped on my shoes while sitting on my bed.

“You and me both, kid,” my mom laughed. “Well, your father and I are going out for breakfast today, I’ll text you the practice video when I record it later.”

“Alright, have a good day. Tell dad I said hi.” I said.

“Will do; bye, sweetie!” The phone line went dead after we said our goodbyes. I look at myself in the mirror, trying to get myself together before I walk downstairs and see Skylar. Skylar was a handful, needless to say. My uncle, Mason, told me that Skylar lived here in the Bay Area of Cali a couple of months before I left New York. Uncle Mason was relieved knowing that someone would be watching over her, considering she was fresh out of college and on the “wild” side. Skylar, despite being in her “do whatever I want and can” phase, she’s been a pretty cool roommate. Since I was an only child growing up, Skylar was like a little sister to me, and no matter what, we always had each other’s backs.

I see the time on my phone and realize I’m running a little late. I grabbed my bag and exit my room, heading downstairs.

Skylar is sitting on the sofa, flipping through the channels on the TV, drinking the biggest cup of iced coffee I’ve possibly seen. She looks at me for a moment and then looks back towards the TV.

“You’re leaving already?” Skylar asked. I grab my dance bag from the floor next to the front door, getting ready to depart.

“Yep, today I have practice,” I began to say. “Please no strange boys in the house, Sky.” I looked back up to Skylar, who looks at me as if she is offended at what I said.

“I don’t bring strange boys home,” Skylar argued.

“My bad, I meant weirdos,” I continued. Skylar rolled her eyes and went back to doing what she was doing.

“Whatever, mom,” Skylar responded. Between the two of us, I am definitely the responsible one. Me? Responsible? I know, it shocks me too. “What time are you getting home?”

Before I open the door, I turn around one last time towards Skylar.

“Don’t know, so make your plans strategic this time around,” I smiled and left the condo. Another day, another dollar.

I grabbed my bike from the building’s parking lot and ride my way to work. Driving in Cali literally doesn’t exist. I thought driving in NYC was bad until I came to Cali. I invested in getting a bike because it saves me the little money I make, and gas prices are literally insane here. And I mean, the weather is always nice here, so why not just ride my bike? I get on my bike and begin to ride. The wind goes through my hair as I pedal; these rides to work in the morning are possibly the highlight of most of my days.

I lock up my bike on a pole in front of the studio before entering it. I walked to the front desk, in which Eduardo greets me.

“Hey, Miss Grace!” he smiles and says. I smile back, greeting him as well.

“Good Morning, Eduardo,” I politely answered back.

“Studio 25; correct?” Eduardo asks as he grabs the key for the studio. I take it from him and thank him once again before heading to the studio. The studio space is small, but I tend to make ends meet here. I open the storage closet and see my video setup for the choreography videos I record for the studio back home.

“Almost ready?” A man’s voice is heard next to the studio door. I look over at him, smiling and inviting him in.

“Ready as can be,” I said as he wrapped his arms around my body. I look back up at him, who is looking down at me with reassurance.

“You got this, jagiya,” Jamie softly said.

As I set up, I can’t help but think about last night at the cafe. A part of me still believes it was some sort of fever dream I was experiencing; maybe I didn’t drink enough water or something. Jamie just looked like a different man. When we first met back all those years ago, he looked smaller, younger; he kinda had this naive look in his face when he first came to New York. Now, he looks older, bigger; he still had some light behind his eyes, but he definitely looks like he has his guard up. He looked… sexy with his blue black hair and the little tan he has on his skin. It was a sight I didn’t think would look that good on someone like Jamie. Despite that, he just feels different… like he’s not the Jamie I once knew.

But, why am I surprised? Mad shit had happened between us since we first met, and I know it could take a roll on even the nicest person on the world. I could understand his hesistancy when he saw me. I definitely can.

I turned on the video camera in front of me and wait for the students to join into the video call. “Hey guys!” I greeted the students coming into the call. “Make sure to warm up for 10 minutes and we will get you guys started for this new choreo I got planned for you.”

I wanted to still teach those who come to the dance academy. I still wanted to create dances and still do my job in a sense, I just didn’t want to be in New York anymore.

I got to my job at the cafe around 7, and of course Sharon is already on her bullshit. I took this job because it was a simple one, plus it allowed me to do what I wanted to do during the day, and then make a little bit of money at night. I also just wanted an excuse to be on the boardwalk all the time, but shit, Sharon will suck the fun out of anything around her.

“Nice for you to come tonight, Grace,” Sharon said. I went to the back to drop off my things and get an apron on.

“It’s literally 7:03, I’m here,” I answered. I tried to walk past Sharon and begin my shift of the night, but Sharon stops me midway out to the cafe area.

“Grace, I wanted to talk to you about your shift last night. This is a classy cafe for people to come in and enjoy drinks and food…” I don’t understand what Sharon was saying, but then again; I don’t ever understand what the fuck Sharon is talking about half of the time. Sharon folded her arms and looked at me. “You’re not here to pick up numbers from tourists, you’re here to do your job.” Sharon walks away before I could even say anything back. It wasn’t even worth arguing with her… I mean, she just better not talk all crazy and fire me or some shit, because then she’s really going to get these hands.

I couldn’t help but worry that Jamie would come back to the cafe. Like, maybe I should just quit? Maybe it’s best if I just go somewhere else so that Jamie doesn’t keep coming back here. I mean, as much as I wanted that, I also found myself looking towards the cafe door whenever a customer entered. Maybe I was just overthinking this. Maybe Jamie moved on… he has every right to do so.

The thought instantly makes me focus on the cafe at the moment; it was just better to not think about things that will just hurt me in the end. This fucking blows.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Something Uneasy About You: A Scene.

Jamie power walks away from the cafe and back towards the direction where his friends are in the bar. He brushes his hair back, still in shock about what happened in the cafe. He doesn’t stop walking and he doesn’t turn back to look.

Jamie finally arrives back at the bar; he looks around for Shawn and Kevin. He hears Kevin call out from him a couple of tables down from where he was. Jamie tries to return back to his friends as unbothered as possible.

Kevin: Hyung, where were you? We gotta get Shawn back home before he makes a dumb decision.

Jamie: When doesn’t he make a dumb decision? *looks around* Where is he anyway?

Kevin: I don’t know, somewhere on the dance floor.

Kevin gets up from his chair and tries his best to get Shawn out of the crowd of people. When he successfully does so, Shawn notices Jamie.

Shawn: Hyung! We were supposed to mingle with the ladies tonight! Where were you?

Jamie: I had to grab a coffee, get some fresh air.

Shawn: For an hour?

Jamie was shocked that Shawn was well-aware enough to notice that he was gone for that long.

Jamie: *dismissive* Come on, let’s go back to the house; it’s getting late anyway…

Shawn agrees and leaves the bar with both Jamie and Kevin.

Back at the house, Jamie is in his room for the night; his glasses are back on and his hair isn’t brushed back anymore. He unscrews a pill bottle and takes two pills from it; his head is pounding. He looks back up towards his nightstand and still sees the Iced Americano that he bought from Grace. He holds his head in his hands and shuts his eyes; all that he sees is Grace back at the cafe from earlier.

Jamie: *to himself* What the hell is she doing in California? What are the fucking odds she would just be there and–

A knock is heard on Jamie’s door, in which he stops talking and looks up. He sees that it’s Kevin.

Jamie: Kevin-ah?

Kevin: *walks in* Hey, Hyung…

He sits on Jamie’s bed next to him. Jamie looks at Kevin.

Jamie: Everything okay?

Kevin doesn’t say much. He takes in a deep breath.

Kevin: Joo-Ah’s mad that I went out tonight to the bar.

Jamie: She told you she was mad?

Kevin: Not exactly… she just seemed like she was annoyed like I went out…

Jamie takes a sip from his coffee and places it back down.

Jamie: I don’t think she’s mad at you. I think she’s just worried about you being in a foreign country. She means well.

Kevin: Was Seohyun the same way when you first came to America?

Jamie looks at Kevin, exhausted and not wanting to get in with Kevin. Jamie has learned that Kevin sometimes will say things to piss him off, but other times he just genuinely says what’s on his mind.

Jamie: *nods* She was. She even told me that nothing good ever comes from being in America…

Kevin starts to laugh. Jamie looks back at him, not realizing why she all of a sudden started to laugh.

Jamie: What?

Kevin: I mean, I guess she was right.

Kevin gets up and walks out of Jamie’s room. Jamie, now annoyed, gets up from the bed and grabs his iced americano. He throws it into the garbage bin.

Lights turn on in a small condo. Keys are heard being put in a tray next to the door. Grace takes in a deep breath and sighs. She drops her bag on the floor and sits on the sofa. Moments later, she hears a door open from upstairs. Grace turns around and looks towards the flight of stairs. A younger woman walks downstairs towards the living room. She has blonde hair and a fresh tan.

Skylar: You’re home early tonight, Grace!

Skylar is Grace’s cousin from her father’s side. She resembles the family a lot more than Grace does, considering Grace’s father is a twin and Skylar looks like her father.

Grace gets up from the sofa and tiredly rubs her eyes.

Grace: Sky, I always get out at 10pm…

Skylar: On a Friday?

Grace turns her head to the side, questioning Skylar’s jumpy behavior. Skylar isn’t that much younger than Grace, but Grace definitely looks out for Skylar in the way Skylar looks out for her.

Grace: You’re acting really weird…

Skylar: *defensive* And you’re weird for being home at this hour all of a sudden!

Grace: *suspicious* Is there a boy in your room?

Skylar: No?

A man’s voice is heard on the second floor; he calls out for Skylar. Grace raises her eyebrows and looks at Skylar. She stands there, busted.

Skylar: He was going to be out of there before you got home!

Grace: He shouldn’t even be here, Sky!

Skylar: Sheesh, just because you don’t invite a man into the condo, doesn’t mean I have to live like you…

The man comes out in a bathrobe. Grace widens her eyes at the sight and then quickly back down and away.

Man: Oh! I didn’t know you had company, Susie…

Grace blinks in shock, just watching the interaction happen.

Grace: *confused* Susie?

Skylar: *looks up* Sorry. You gotta go now that she’s home.

Man: *confused* Oh… she doesn’t want to join?

Grace coughs in shock. Skylar turns her entire body and looks upstairs.

Skylar: Boy come downstairs and leave!

He comes downstairs and Skylar’s pushing him towards the front door.

Man: But my clothes!

Skylar grabs a pile of clothes from the floor and tosses it to the guy. Without saying anything else, she closes the door on him and turns around towards Grace. Grace stares at Skylar back.

Grace: Where’d you meet that one?

Skylar: At the club on Terrance.

Grace shakes her head and begins to walk upstairs until Skylar calls for her. Grace turns around.

Skylar: You never answered me! Why are you home so early on a Friday? You’re never this early.

Grace: I just wasn’t feeling good.

Grace turns back around and walks back up the stairs into her room. Once she gets into her room, she goes into her pants pocket and pulls out the phone number Jamie put in her apron earlier. She looks at it once more, then throws it on her nightstand.

Grace: *to herself* He can’t be here. Why the fuck would he be here? How would he know to be here?

She can’t muster up the energy to take off her work clothes. she just lays back on it and rolls over to her side. She just stared at the piece of paper on her nightstand until she falls asleep.

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Something in the Coffee: A Duo Monologue.

It was Grace standing there.

It was Jamie sitting there.

She kept fidgeting with her memo pad and pen in her hands. She kept looking back to the woman who clearly looked like the owner of this cafe. I couldn’t stop staring at Grace; is this even Grace? Have I lost my mind to the point where I’m now seeing her and hearing her voice in places that I shouldn’t be?

She quickly turns her head back towards me. Her red hair was shorter, a lot shorter; her curls bounced whenever she turned her head.

I looked back at Jamie, not really believing it was Jamie. What were the odds he was at the same place I was in? Ari wouldn’t tell him where I was, or anyone for that matter. I felt tonight’s dinner turn in my stomach, like this couldn’t be Jamie. His hair wasn’t blonde anymore; it was the darkest shade of blue-black I could imagine. It was wavy, pulled back, and he didn’t have his glasses on. Who was this man? Why does he look and speak just like Jamie?

I realized I didn’t say anything for a while and I haven’t moved from the spot I was standing. I cleared my throat, telling myself that I only had an hour left to my shift.

“Wh-What would you like, sir?” I said, trying to remain as professional as possible. He’s just another customer… that you fell absolutely in love with at one point in your life. He doesn’t stop looking at me, so I quickly look back to Sharon, my bitch of a boss who takes her job way too seriously for a cafe on boardwalk.

Jamie takes a while to respond. He places the menu back on the table.

“I’ll take an Iced Americano,” I said to Grace. She looks down at her memo pad and quickly turns away from me.

“You want it with a little bit of creamer, right?” She said it so quickly, I didn’t even realize that she remembered. She stopped in her tracks, probably regretting that she remembered. I look back at her as she turned around. She looks so different with some color on her skin.

“Yes,” I answered back. She didn’t say anything to me; she just walked towards the back of the cafe. I felt like I could finally breathe, knowing that she wasn’t near me anymore.

I felt like I could finally breathe, knowing that he wasn’t near me anymore. I placed my memo pad on the counter in the back, shutting my eyes tight in hopes that I was possibly dreaming. He can’t be here. That’s not him. That can’t be Jamie; the Jamie I know wouldn’t ever wear blue jeans, first of all. Also, he nearly looks unrecognizable without his glasses on.

The barista in the back of the cafe hands me the Iced Americano. I take a deep breath and exit the back. The sooner I give him his drink, the better.

She comes out from the back, and I felt my face get hot once more. She walks towards my table and places the coffee on it.

“Here you go,” Grace politely said. I nod my head, thanking her for it. “Do you need anything else?” she asks.

I shake my hand in protest. “No no, I’m alright. Thank you,” I answered back. She looks down at my every move.

“Fuck,” Grace quickly said, then immediately regretted it once she saw my reaction. I was genuinely confused at what came over her. She sighs, pointing at my wrist.

I couldn’t help but notice. I should have kept my mouth shut. What was the use anyway? It’s already out there.

“Your bracelet,” Grace finally says. I look down at it, surprised she remembers it.

“Yeah,” I began to say. I looked back up at her, nothing but seriousness in my eyes. “The love of my life gifted me this.” I don’t know what came over me and why I even said it. I guess because she knew. She knew exactly what it was and noticed it. I had to let her know what it meant to me, but I was afraid I was going to scare her away.

She froze in place, and then looked back at the woman in the back.

“Is that your boss?” I immediately changed the subject. I didn’t want her to run. She turned back around, now looking a little calmer than she did before.

“Yeah, she’s an uptight bitch,” Grace said, and I couldn’t help but laugh. It was like I got a glimpse of the Grace I know, or knew. The thought fades my smile away slowly until Grace speaks again.

“I could feel my boss’ eyes on me, wondering why I’ve been standing in the same place for too long,” I said while fidgeting in place. He smiles once more, and I can’t lie; it was a sight that I missed. The way his eyes smiled when he did. It’s like I could see him perfectly now that his glasses aren’t on.

“Well,” Jamie began to say, getting up from the table. “I should be getting back to my friends at the bar.”

Without hesitation, I began talking to him like it was just normal for us to carry a conversation. “Oh? Shawn and Kevin?” I asked. I knew it had to be those two. If brotherhood was a living, breathing image, it would be Jamie, Shawn, and Kevin. But I couldn’t help but wonder if they’re here because they’re doing another case. What was it about America that these three loved anyway?

“Yeah,” I said as I nodded my head. “They’re at the bar a couple of stores down on the boardwalk,” I continued.

“Ugh, that place?” Grace said without even hesitating. “That very much screams Summer tourist attraction central,” she continued. I couldn’t help but laugh. Grace always knew how to make me laugh even when she wasn’t trying.

“Yeah, so I should go back to them and help them out,” I calmly said.

Seeing Jamie get up from the booth took my breath away in ways I didn’t even realize. How the fuck did this man still have this affect on me? Even after everything that has happened between us, it’s like he always had this fucking hold over me.

“Uhm, maybe,” I began to say. He looks back at me; his eyebrow slightly scrunched in curiosity. I felt the wind literally knock the words out of me. Fuck, what am I doing? Why am I getting Jamie involved in my life again? “Maybe we could grab a coffee sometime… of course, in another coffee shop; it doesn’t have to be here, or–” My voice began to get hoarse. Jamie didn’t say anything back right away, since my boss calls out for me and I turned my head to face her.

Grace was something else. I wasn’t expecting her to want to ever speak to me again, yet here we are. I hesitate at first for a moment; I truly didn’t want Grace to feel like she needed to speak to me, and I also didn’t want to feel obligated to speak to Grace because of our history. It was a rough one, and for most people this wouldn’t have gone the way it went for us. Other people would’ve cause a scene, accused one another of foul behavior and then stormed off without a trace. Not us. We were never conventional anyway.

She looks back at her boss once she hears her name being called. I knew right then and there I had to do something; she was going to run off and I couldn’t let that happen. I will not let her run off, truly because I waited so long to finally see her and hear her voice.

I grabbed her memo pad and pen, which made her quickly turn around back at me.

“I don’t want you to get in trouble,” I began to say as I wrote in her memo pad. “And I should get back to Shawn and Kevin before they do something illegal or something…” I wrote my phone number down and ripped it out of the memo pad. I looked back at her; my God she was beautiful. I looked at her and folded the piece of paper and placed it in her apron pocket.

“Whenever you’re ready,” I simply said.

“Whenever you’re ready,” he said as he placed a piece of paper inside the pocket of my apron. I don’t say anything back; Jamie just starts to walk out of the cafe with his iced americano in his hand. I couldn’t help but watch him leave the cafe up until the very last moment the door closed behind him. I went to get the paper in my apron pocket. I grabbed the piece of paper and unfold it. I bite the inside of my lip when I read the phone number on the paper with his name on me.

Fuck. What did I get myself into again?

The "Something" Series: Season 2

Something Intangible, Unfathomable: A Monologue.

Back at this damn pier. Shawn, Kevin, and I walk on the boardwalk together; lights surround the different storefronts and people are still very active on the pier. Shawn is the one that leads us on the boardwalk, knowing where this bar is. I couldn’t pretend and act like I wasn’t nervous. I nearly poked my eyes trying to put in my contacts in them. Kevin was shocked to see that for the first time in a really long time, my hair was brushed back and I was putting on contact lenses. I guess I had to play the role of “someone who was ready to mingle”. I definitely wasn’t.

We finally reach the bar on the boardwalk. It’s definitely a tourist attraction, considering how many people were already at the bar. All three of us stand in front of it. Shawn, who is the most excited, turns back around and looks at Kevin and me.

“Isn’t this a cool place?” Shawn asks us. I can’t lie, it was a really nice place. Maybe tonight will be a good night.

“Let’s have some fun!” I said. Kevin looks at me and sighs when I walk into the bar with Shawn. He follows behind us.

We look around and see a lot of different women in the bar. Mainly are with other women, on the dancefloor with drinks in their hands. Before I know it, Shawn pulls me towards the bar to begin drinking for the night.

“Ya, aren’t we gonna wait for Kevin?” I asked Shawn. I looked over at Kevin, who is slowly walking towards us, not amused at the environment. Typical for Kevin, even if he wasn’t in a relationship.

Before I got an answer, Shawn orders a round of shots for us. He looks at me as he waits for me to get my shot off of the bar top. He holds it up before cheering us on for the night.

“To us having the time of our lives in America!” Shawn toasted with his shot. We both clinked our drinks before chugging them down. It was definitely a harsh shot. I believe it was Tequila?

The night progresses and Shawn and I have moved to the dance floor. The shots definitely helped me loosen up for the night. The music is loud, and women begin to walk towards us to dance. Shawn grabs the hand of one woman and begins to dance with her. A woman walks up to me; she’s short and petite with brown hair. Her hair is braided to the side. She was cute; really cute to be exact.

“I’m Selena,” the woman confidently said. She began to dance with me, and I felt the drinks and situation rush straight to my head. I don’t know if it just was hot in the bar due to the summer heat, but my face was sweaty and immediately red. “What’s your name?” She looked up at me.

“Jamie,” I shyly answered. She looks at me and smiles, then giggles. She’s definitely drunk.

“That’s a cute name! Are you from around here? I don’t think I ever saw you here!” She asked. I’m not in the right mind to understand her completely; it was like my English was quickly disappearing from my knowledge.

Eung,” I didn’t even realize I answered back in Korean, but she was so lost in the crowd and music that she didn’t even realize that it wasn’t English. She giggles and grabs my hand to drag me towards the middle of the dance floor. She begins to press her body against me, and suddenly the bar is spinning. I don’t see Shawn on the dance floor anymore, and I don’t see Kevin at the bar stand anymore.

“Grace, you need to rest. Come on–” I began to help Grace to sit on the sofa, but she yanks her arm away from me and continues to cry.

“No! I- I need to let this out or else it’s just gonna eat me alive!” She cried out.

“You could tell me in the morning, come one you had too much to drink–“

“I’m so sorry, Jamie, I-I couldn’t keep it, I–“

I back away from the girl, in which she turns around to look at me.

“You’re okay, John?” she asked. I don’t answer her, I just walk away from the dance floor quickly, and straight out of the bar.

I walked out and took a deep breath. It was definitely cooler out on the boardwalk than it was in the bar. My head finally stops spinning. What the fuck was that about? I haven’t thought about that last night with Grace since returning back to Korea a couple of months ago. I thought I was over it when I lost contact with her. I was supposed to “let her go”. I was trying to let her go. Tonight was supposed to prove that I was letting her go. Maybe it’s just useless. Maybe Grace is just that one that got away. She was. She is.

My phone begins to ring in my pocket, which I picked it up. It was Kevin.

“Hyung, where’d you go?” Kevin asked. The music in the background was making my head pound all over again.

“I had to get some air, I’m not really feeling good…” I respond back. I can hear Shawn shouting, telling Kevin to tell me to come back. I felt bad leaving Kevin with Shawn, but I couldn’t go back in there.

“Are you going home?” Kevin asked.

“No, no… I’m just going to go for a walk. I’ll be back in a few,” I answered. Kevin said his goodbyes for the time being and hung up the phone. I look further down the boardwalk to see if there was a place open that wasn’t greasy, massive or just something that wouldn’t make me puke the alcohol in my system up. I began walking down the boardwalk, seeing everyone around me have fun on this summer night. For a trip that was meant to be a last hoorah with the guys and fun, it’s looking like this is possibly the worst trip to America I had. Even my dictionary days were better than this.

I see a small cafe open and suddenly I knew I needed some coffee to keep me together. I didn’t hesitate to walk in. It was a cafe very suitable for the boardwalk; it was tropical summer-themed, which I found cute. It was also called “Brew Ha-Ha Cafe”. Can’t go wrong with a cute little cafe to help out this tipsy foreigner.

I walked in and sat at a booth. Mna, it feels good to just sit down in a quiet place. There weren’t that many people in here at this time of night; I’m not surprised though. I began to look through their drink menu and opted for the Iced Americano.

I don’t remember how it happened, probably because I thought it was the alcohol getting the best of me. I thought I was hearing things. Aigoo, please just leave me alone. I placed the menu on the table and looked up.

She looked back at me, mortified. Perhaps I did as well.

“Grace?” I softly said to her.