Geomancy couple - Chapter 4
Everybody looked at his lips attentively. So did Arum, swallowing.
‘Why should I keep meeting the type of man who is like a scam? I really have no idea. I chose my fiancé among a myriad of men, but he’s eating my heart out with anxiety.’
“You! Because you’re a trash can!” the lecturer mercilessly said in a sharp tone.
All the people were shocked. The lecture hall was even more silent than the rough Siberian wilderness with blowing biting winds.
He tore Arum’s wounded heart and threw salt on it, saying, “The purpose of a trash can is to contain garbage. Who would put garbage in a jewelry box? When I attended a kindergarten in Paris, my teacher said, ‘You should not throw away garbage. You should not create it from the start.’ Period.”
Arum felt dizzy while hearing his reply. She was criticizing him within her heart, ‘Did you say you were born in Paris? Are you joking?’
He continued, “I found no trash cans in my friends’ houses in Paris. They put the trash can in an out-of-sight corner such as below the kitchen sink or in a warehouse. Even then, it’s important to hide it. Let me say to the woman who asked this question: You should never have met such a scam from the beginning!”
That last sentence of his was a finishing blow to Arum.
With sunken eyes, roughly tied hair and dry lips, she burst into tears, after all. She stamped out of the lecture hall.
She shivered. She gnashed her teeth at the thought of him.
Of course, she broke up her engagement with Konsu.
Three years passed after that, but she was forced to come to a police station because of Konsu’s ghost.
However, she felt different today.
She wanted to tell this intellectual geomancy master about that young geomancy guy. She just felt it rather regretful to have formed a bad image of geomancy because of that phony geomancy guy.
While she was looking at him blankly, Hojoon suddenly approached her, asking her, “Aren’t you going to work?”
“Oh, yeah, I should,” Arum said, startled while answering his question mechanically.
‘Right! I have a ten o’clock meeting on today.’
She said, “Okay, then. Let me accept your condition. I’ll contact you later.”
Hojoon gave her his business card and then left.
Sitting on a bench at the bus stop before the police station, Arum felt as if she was bewitched by a ghost. It was only an overnight happening, but at the same time, it was a spectacular adventure for her. She thought she forgot all the memories of what had happened three years ago, but they were still hidden deep in her heart.
Little did she expect that her life would change so much because of her quarrel with Konsu three years ago.
It all started with the matter of ramen, or instant noodles.
On that very day in question, she and Konsu purchased home appliances.
Typically, lovers didn’t want to spend even 10,000 won on buying their stuff, but on that day, Arum and Konsu just came back home after spending as much as one million won on buying wedding shower gifts. And their matrimonial home was the house that Arum rented but purchased later on the occasion of her marriage. Though it was just a plain old villa, she thought it was large enough for a couple.
They were hungry as they skipped lunch while they were absorbed in buying home appliances. But the refrigerator was empty.
What’s available at the moment was just one ramen.
“What shall we order?” said Arum, dangling a food ad attached on the refrigerator before Konsu.
But Konsu replied inattentively, switching TV channels with a remote control.
On any other day he would have replied, “Wait a minute. Let me cook for you.” When he dated her, he really wanted to. He really wanted to please her. But he began to think differently when his wedding was just around the corner.
‘You are not supposed to cook for others, but each should cook for their own survival. It is not that men do not well, but that they don’t cook.’
Konsu recalled that phrase that he underlined while reading a book. As a working couple, it was inefficient for one to cook for the other, he thought.
‘Whew! I should practice this when I become married.’
He was confident that Arum was a rational woman who could distinguish theory from practice.
“What I mean is we should order food as the refrigerator is empty,” he said.
Appeasing her offended feelings as much as he could, she responded to his annoying reply.
“Right now they should be watching the Korean-Japanese soccer match on TV. Do you think they can deliver our order on time?” Konsu asked.
“Let’s eat ramen.”
“We’ve got just one. Won’t you go out and buy another one?”
Having said that, Arum expected that Konsu would stand up and go on an errand. There was a convenience store within one-minute walking distance.
“One ramen is enough. I know you’re the best cook as far as cooking ramen is concerned,” said Konsu.
As expected, he only gave lip service.
“Oh my… You…” she quipped at him.
“I know what you’re trying to say. Love me?” said Konsu.
She felt like she lost again.
“Yea, I love you with all of my life,” she said.
Kissing his cheek gently, she went back into the kitchen.
The poor lovers attached a romantic meaning to a single ramen.
So far, so good.
At that moment, the kitchen sink drawer fell off all of a sudden.
The rail supporting the drawer was torn off.
She got angry, taking out a ladle. Her fingers felt like they were burning as she was holding the falling drawer.
“Dang it! That’s why I asked you to change this sink,” she said.
Obviously, she got annoyed.
Though she jerked out words carelessly, Konsu spoke with a serious face, “Bullshit! Why are you bringing it up again? We were done talking about that, right?”
Konsu was also annoyed as he went around with her all day long to buy home appliances because Arum insisted on buying a coffee machine that was missing on the wedding shower list.
“We don’t have to go to a coffee shop if we obtain this,” said Arum.
“Are you sure you won’t go to a coffee shop?”
In fact, Konsu felt it was a waste of money to drink coffee whenever he dated her.
Now, he didn’t have to date her, so he was intent on stopping drinking tasteless coffee.
Someone extolled its supreme taste, but it was just bitter water to Konsu.
‘You want to have coffee at home? And you want to buy a coffee machine for it?’
Konsu couldn’t understand.
But Arum tried her best to cajole him into buying one. Though he knew she told a white lie, he decided to believe it. He even felt miserable because it was he who begged her for marriage despite his meager income.
So, he purchased one in six-month installments, as he felt he couldn’t at another time.
In fact, he recalled a piece of advice from his senior friends who got married.
“Preparing a wedding shower? Just accept what your bride-to-be wants to do. Otherwise, you’ll be burned out. Buy the stuff even with a loan. As you have to pay it off anyway, buy your own stuff, too,” he said.
But he flew off the handle at her complaint about the sink.
Actually, he agreed with her to keep using the sink. Instead of changing it, they promised to move to a new house as early as possible.
He didn’t feel good about her throwing a tantrum because she was aware of that promise.
Konsu and Aurm were pretty sensitive to the matter of the sink replacement.
Arum got angry whenever she looked at the sink that didn’t befit a newlyweds’ house.
Obviously, it was a mismatch with the new linoleum, new wallpaper and new home appliances.
She didn’t feel happy while looking at it. She even felt her pride was offended when she wanted to say she was unhappy because of that sink. But when the sink was broken, she just revealed her genuine feelings before her brain caught up to her mouth.
“Why are you using foul language? I just said that carelessly.”
“Why should I? Did I say anything wrong?”
“Damn it!” said Konsu angrily.
And then he threw the remote control at the wall.
Upon hitting the wall, the remote control broke, with its broken pieces bouncing all over.
Arum couldn’t sit idle, of course.
“Do you think I’m not throwing stuff because I don’t know how to?”
Konsu was completely resigned to the situation. This time he trampled on the notebook on the floor.
The sound of its monitor cracking was heard loudly.
“Oh my god! What did you do now, Konsu Han!”
Ignoring her shouting, he got out of the house right away, and sent her a text message.
She slumped down onto the floor and began to sob when she received the message. She called him at his cell phone, but he didn’t answer it.
But he didn’t come when 3 PM came around the next day.
Arum and Konsu, both 27-year-old, a campus couple, were separated just like that because of a single ramen.