Janice opens the door and slips inside. The moment she steps inside; she hears a clicking sound. Initially, two to three lights turn on and then the whole room brightens. Janice closes her eyes a little to fill herself with the view, and the room fits well according to her expectations. The room is splendid, providing ample space in the centre, which is a large octagonal-shaped about 8m in diameter into which players are supposed to fight. On one side are treadmills, punching bag, rolled mats, planks and other materials for warm-up. The floor is well polished and shows a reflection of light.
She wonders how can this be predictable? She walks towards the treadmill, ”So, this is the secret of his fitness. ” She runs her fingers over it. Oh! Thats smooth!
Her head begins to ache, but right now, she is so much driven away by the view that she ignores it. The room gives her a familiar feeling… feeling that she has been here before. This feels strange, though. She steps into a circle, and as she does, she starts to shiver not because of cold indeed but due to pain.
”Augh! What is happening with my body? ” Her muscles begin to ache badly. She clutches her throat and crumples on the floor. She covers her ears to avoid voices, but those voices… they aren coming from the room but from her head. The voices only grow louder, and her head begins to ache badly as if it is going to explode. The pain blocks her view causing her eyelids to shut. She looks around bewildered, searching for any sight, but she is all alone. Is… Is there someone? There is someone! Maybe not someone but something that is attached to her. She tries to get up, but her pain grasps her and throws her on the floor again.
Medicine! Medicine! she mumbles, searching her pockets for tablets which she is used to take ever since she faced the accident. She has been missing her dose lately. She opens the cork and empties the bottle on her palm, ”Only two are left! ” She immediately gulps one tablet and saves one for later. ”Ive to pay a visit to Wus; otherwise, Im gonna die with this pain. ”
She stays at her place sweating, panting, waiting for her body to regain lost energy. Dylan enters the room, followed by Lixin. Seeing Janice lying on the floor, Dylan immediately darts toward her. ”Hey! Are you alright? ” he asks, extending his hand, and she accepts.
”Yeah! Im fine. I guess more than fine, ” says Janice getting up. The medicine has done its work since her pain wears off. It is some sort of stimulant that whenever she takes, she becomes much more energetic, and she is too dependent that she can leave it; otherwise, the pain and those voices inside her head haunt her. ”I… I tripped. ”
Dylan looks around, perplexed because there is not a single thing lying on the floor onto which she could trip. Seeing a suspicious look on his face, she adds, ”on my own feet. ”
He nods, but he doesn look completely satisfied with her answer, even so he doesn argue either.
”We can practise later in case you
e having trouble today. ” He looks concerned for her.
”No, no, Im okay, ” says Janice waving her hand. She has been living with that pain, and its occurrence is not frequent, nor does its intensity except currently. She was about to pass out, but she controlled herself.
e sweating already, ” he says. Boom! A shell has just launched from Dylan on Janice, blowing her head. She hasn noticed how heavily she is sweating. The shirt clearly says that either her mind is lost or her hypothalamus has failed to work properly. Sweating in the cold season? She is definitely in trouble now.
She feels a chill, ”Oh! This? ” she says, pinching the collar of her shirt. ”This isn the sweat. I washed my face… carelessly. ”
He looks at her wet face and then her shirt, ”Ze, bring a shirt for her, ” he orders Lixin. He nods and disappears.
How much trouble is she going to cause for Dylan? Or this is just the beginning? She can simply tell him what she is going through, but it will only cause much fuss for him and nothing more. Besides, who is he onto which she can trust? Currently, she only focuses on polishing herself. She tries to stop Lixin, but who can win over him when it comes to an argument? What if you catch a cold is his weapon to end the argument with her because he knows she is allergic to cold. Oh! His instincts are beyond her expectations.
”Fine! ” says Janice. She walks away from the ring and leans on the wall. Lixin appears and hands her an inner and a jacket.
”What is this for? ” she asks, holding a jacket on the face of Lixin.
”This is his order, ” he says, pointing his finger at Dylan, who he is watching previous taekwondo fights. She rolls her eyes and goes on changing into a new outfit. Little later, she walks in, pulling her zipper up and snorts at Dylan. Lixin has already left for his home since he was on over-time only because of her. ”Are we gonna start practice now? ” she asks.
”Definitely! ” he exclaims, walking into the ring and asking her to do the same. She carefully steps in, and this time nothing happens to her. She shakes her head, ”It might be my pain attack because Ive skipped my dose. It is certainly impossible for me to be here. ”
”Stay focused! ” shouts Dylan standing opposite her, and he is ready to launch his attack. She takes her position and asks him to do so.
Dylan has launched his side-kicks, and she maintains to block every attack caused by him.
e only going to defend yourself in the first round, then you
e going to have a penalty for not launching an attack! ” He is right indeed. Last year, a team added a newbie and threw him in the ring. He only ends up getting penalties on himself because he didn offend, and later, he back off. She looks at his feet. How rhythmic they are moving with his momentum! She looks at his torso and then his foot again, raised to kick her.
Ah! His kick has thrown her far away from him, and she launches on her back, yet she is still in the ring. She clutches her stomach. That was hard! For a moment, it occurs to her that she is again in the position where she was a while ago—panting, gasping and sweating. But Dylan is standing in front of her though far away, shouting or, she guesses, encouraging her to get up, and there are no voices. She is safe!
She gets up and positions herself again.
e also supposed to focus on every move of your opponent in order to defend yourself and seize the chance for offence as well, ” says Dylan calmly. Janice nods. She tries to mimic Dylan, and he recognizes what she is trying to do. ”You aren in some kind of mimicry show. Why are you copying me? ” says Dylan. ”Construct your own strategies and try to make them work for you! ”
There are many things she doesn know. The fight she sees on TV is completely of a different perspective when she herself is in the ring and facing her opponent. She flusters.
”Lets take a break. Im exhausted, ” suggests Dylan. It is impossible to learn every strategy overnight, but if she makes her own strategies, they will surely help her. Dylan hands her a towel and a water bottle and sits next to her.
”Why you want me to add in your team? ” asks Janice. She gulps down the whole bottle in one go.
”Oh! Isn it clear that there is a room for one? ” says Dylan. He leans towards her and tucks a strand of hair behind her ear. She shivers. He whispers in her ear, ”Besides, I think youve potential. ”
She tightens her lips to prevent moan to escape through her lips.
Eh? Seriously? He is trying to look through her. It has been only two days and more exactly if you say then it will be two nights and one morning. He is expecting too much, or has he really seen through her? ”So… you think that. What if you are wrong? ” blurts out Janice.
”And what if I say I have faith in that? ” counters Dylan.
”You win! ” says Janice making a mad face at him. He plays with words quite well that he hangs her system easily. He withdraws and begins to laugh. However, he laughs very often and not in front of everyone still as he does so he looks more handsome.
”I wonder, ” says Dylan attracting her attention. She has surrendered in front of him, but he is Dylan. Can he just save his questions for later? Or simply bury them inside? ”How do you know the practice room will be here? asks Dylan.
”I… I. ” This time she is completely out of words. A notification pops on her phone, which drives their attention, ”Probably midnight, ” says Janice, fixing her eyes on bold letters on her phone clearly stating 3 AM. She scoops her phone and looks at Dylan, who is profoundly looking at her, ready to listen to her another freshly prepared lie. She sighs. ”Fine! This is my discovery, okay? ” Dylan raises his eyebrow and then shakes his head.
”Lets call it a day, ” proposes Janice because she is sleepy and, moreover, fed up with covering her moves. She yawns and gets up. She bids him Goodnight and leaves.