All the boys in the Academy dorms had woken up by 5:00 am. They were served breakfast at sharp 6:30 and finished it by 7. After that, the training session went on from 7 to 10. While on the training grounds, Yul kept looking at the direction of medical camps. The tent doors were not open yet. They opened around 8:30 and Yul saw the two people in white aprons going inside, each one carrying a medical kit box and bags.
When they were done with the morning training at 10 am, Subin was pulled aside by Yul."You are going to help me," he told the other boy.
"What! I am not helping you with this." Subin made a cross with his arms. "I don't want to go back to the medical camp. Those people give injections there." He shuddered, reminiscing his yesterday's experience with those sharp needles.
Yul somehow managed to corner him into agreeing. He explained the plan to him and now Yul was holding onto Subin, with Yul trying to make his own legs look shaky. Subin again asked the Juniors to let them go first to which the younger ones readily agreed.
The duo entered the tent. Both the interns looked up. One of them said, "Oh, you guys are from yesterday, right?" The voice sounded so melodious to Yul that he wanted to record it and play it all day long.
"Yes, we are." Subin smiled, feeling apologetic for the lies they would be telling, "This guy was getting dizzy on the training ground. Can you help him?" He pointed at Yul.
"Please let him sit." Zeng was about to do something when the other intern stopped him, "I will handle him, Zeng. You can continue screening the other boys."
Yul shot up a panicked glance at Subin. Subin shot up a panicked glance at Yul. And then they both shot panicked glances back at the two interns.
Thankfully, Subin was the quick-witted among the two.
"I- I think my bandages from yesterday opened up. You can have a look at them, doctor." He left Yul who was leaning on him and went to the other intern, practically dragging the guy away from the scene to give his best friend some privacy with his newfound crush.
Now Yul was left with the man he intended to be with. Meanwhile, intern Zeng prepared a glass of water and put a spoonful of glucose powder in it. After stirring it, he handed it to Yul.
"Here, drink it up. You'll feel better."
After Yul was done drinking, he gave the glass back. Zeng put the back of his palm on Yul's forehead. Yul's skin tingled at the first skin contact. His stomach taking a twist and his heart hammering in his chest.
"The temperature is normal." The intern clarified, then took Yul's wrist to check the pulse. Pressing three fingers on the radial artery, he eyebrows raised,
"Your pulse rate is pretty high."
It's because of you, Yul wanted to say but was at a lack of words. Seeing him silent, Zeng called him after reading the number on his badge,
Yul got out of his daze upon hearing his roll number being called. "Yes," he managed to respond.
"You can rest here till you feel better. I will get back to work now."
Yul couldn't even give a nod. The intern left for his desk and called the next trainee.
During the whole time, Yul couldn't initiate a conversation. He was so nervous and fidgety unlike himself. He felt overly conscious of himself and was straightening his shirt and combing his buzz style hair properly from time to time.
Why was he being so nervous? It wasn't like him at all. He was a confident guy who didn't hesitate to speak his mind. But this time, it was different.
He tried speaking up, to initiate any sort of conversation but every time he was about to call the intern, his heart would just start thumping at an alarming rate. Ultimately, he just couldn't do it. How can he suddenly just propose out his love to a complete stranger? The other person would definitely be taken aback. What was even thinking in the first place? 'I don't know him, he doesn't know me. But… I can't help it. I can't help it that I fell in love with you at first sight!'
Debating throughout, he forgot everything that he had planned the last night. He couldn't man up and say what he intended to and finally had to get out when the bell for a lunch break of the trainees rang.
"You got it?" Subin asked, who was forcibly fed bitter antibiotic pills by the other intern.
Yul shook his head dejectedly.
Subin sighed, "No worries, there's always a next time. You can ask him tomorrow." He comforted his best friend and pulled him to the dining hall.
The day felt way too long. The constitutional law classes were done and so was the sports hour. Everyone assembled for their evening roll call. Boys with a short buzz cut and girls with hair tied in a ponytail or a bun answered their roll numbers with a loud 'Yes Sir!'
After they were dismissed, all the trainees headed to their respective dorms. Males to the left and females to the right. Yul casted one last look at the medical camp tent. The lights were on from the inside, they must be packing up by now. The other male intern came out of the tent carrying two almost empty boxes. There was no sign of the desired one.
Dejected, Yul was walking back to his dorm room, his face sullen. Subin was by his side, humming a new tune.
They were passing a group of juniors when Yul overheard them.
"Thank God, this was the last day of the medical camp. We don't have to stand in those f*cking long lines from tomorrow onwards," one of the juniors said as tiredly leaned on his friend.
Subin was quick to look at Yul, who looked as if his life was slipping away by the second, all the colour drained from his face.
"I have to see him...now," Yul said in a whisper and his legs started walking away soon gaining momentum into a run.
"Wha… hey wait! Yul!" Subin almost screamed as Yul dashed away towards the main gate.
It was now or never!