“Ms. Yuri’s awake! Ms. Yuri’s awake!”
Sounds of feet running engulfed my whole senses as my eyes slowly fluttered open. My eyelids felt heavy as I tried to brush the sleepiness away. It took me a short while to adjust as my vision turned from blurry to clear. And I was surprised at what I saw. All the maids seemed to be inside my room and looking at me as if I was a spectacle to behold. I glanced at each one, puzzled at all the teary-eyed, yet smiling faces looking at me.
Why do they look extremely happy?
Just then, Mom and Dad entered and Mom immediately rushed to my side, tears streaming down her cheeks.
“Oh my daughter! My lovely daughter!” My mother clasped her hands over my right hand and continuously kissed it as tears continued to fall from her eyes.
I glanced again at all the people before turning to my right.
“Mom? Dad? What is happening?”
“You’re finally awake my daughter. You are finally awake.” It was Dad’s turn to talk and I could see tears threatening to fall from his eyes.
Huh? How long was I asleep?
“You are one lucky girl Yuri…”
I am still in my bed, gloomily gazing at the stars outside when Mr. Go, one of the oldest helpers we had, asked if he could talk to me. Of course I agreed. I have nothing else to do anyway. Lying in bed the whole day really is boring. I don’t even understand why they wouldn’t let me go out of my room.
“What do you mean with that Uncle Go?”
I have been calling the old man Uncle Go. He’s been with the Kwons for ages and we have treated him as family already.
He gave me a somehow, sad smile.
“Legend has it that whoever takes even a peek at the garden, would see a beautiful woman dancing in the middle of it. And after seeing the enchanting woman, that person would immediately lose consciousness for his soul would now be taken captive by the beautiful girl. He would be with her until the time she desires. If the man then, surrenders himself to lust and so much as kiss the woman without even asking for her name, he’s soul would be, like all the others, turned into a rose that would pave the way towards the magical gazebo. As legend has it, only one man aside from you has survived the wrath of the garden nymph. He also did not take advantage of the nymph for he has fallen in love with her and has vowed to respect her. Though unlike you, the luck of love wasn’t in his side, for the enchantress, merely let him go without saying her name. But you… she has given you her name… An evidence of an affection that she has developed towards you. Call her out tonight and if she has indeed fallen in love with you, she will appear… released from the curse… and fully human.”
The old man smiled at my puzzled expression before turning around.
“Wait Uncle Go!”
He stopped on his tracks and slightly glanced at my curious face.
“Why do you know so much Uncle?”
The old man smiled upon hearing my question. He then started walking again towards the door before deciding to answer.
“I just do.”
And with that, the door closed.
What does he mean?
Should I go?
I called in a whisper for the nth time this night.
Maybe Uncle Go was wrong… Maybe she did not fall in love with me.
Just then, I heard the same music that I’ve been dancing to, these past 7 days, resound all over the still beautiful garden. The gazebo then glowed and the figure of a woman in the middle of the small structure walked out of it and met me halfway down the pathway lined with roses. She was wearing a white dress this time. She looked so pure and blissful.
“You were looking for me, Yuri?”
“Yes I was Jessica. Yes I was.”