Finally, a nerd made his move!
Episode 14 “I won’t concede easily!”
NamKang is working at the same coffee shop with TenTen. She is sweeping the floor and says a part-time job during a semester break is quite tiring. TenTen says then don’t do it. She says how she can give up so easily. She asks him to eat together after work, she’s so hungry. When he doesn’t answer her, she asks if he heard what she’s asking. She asks frankly if there’s something on his mind.
“That’s a funny question, ‘Is there something on your mind?’ ” he says.
NamKang is feeling upset. She takes garbage bags outside and kicks them hard. Dan gets out of his car and sits down next to her. He cheerfully greets her, “Nong NamKang, first-year med student moving into second-year, are you tired?”
She greets him. He says he came for some coffee but once he’s here, it’s closing time. She says the shop closes at 8:00 p.m.
He says then she’s free now, let’s go find something to eat. She says she’d rather not. He says it’s all right, next time he will come before 8:00 p.m. so that he will get to taste coffee which she makes. He gets up and reaches out his hand to her. She grabs it and stands up. He says he’s leaving now. She bids him goodbye. He waves his hand but she’s too upset to notice.
She comes inside the shop and TenTen already left. She walks out alone crying. Dan is standing there outside. He tenderly asks her to let him drop her off. He takes her bag from her.
They walk along. She sits down on a bench and cries. He sits down beside her and lets her cry in silence.
In his car, she wai-s him and says thank you so much. He says it’s startled him that she wai-s him. He asks her to let him drop her at her house. She nods. He says once she’s home, just take a bath, put some talcum powder on her body to feel comfortable, then get a good sleep because these days she looks worst since he’s known her.
He reminds her not to forget to join the freshmen’s welcoming ceremony.
She says she will order them to do lots of circling around themselves. He smiles and says she turns cruel now that she’s becoming a sophomore.
He says, “Nong NamKang, second-year med student, no, it should be Pee NamKang, second-year med student.”
Paeo, Arm and Taliw are wearing rainbow-colored wigs in the welcoming ceremony (both girls are in Nursing while Arm is in Political Science, it says on the signs around their necks).
An older student is telling them that they will do a round of race today and the team which can run smoothly together with equal strides and display unity, that team will be the winner, but the lost ones will become their slaves.
Paeo says as if their team has really equal leg-length and weight. Arm argues that they love one another as one. Paeo says she’d rather have equal leg-length at this minute, they don’t need loving-one-another so much right now.
Arm couldn’t agree more. Paeo tells Taliw to keep reciting, “Left, right, left, right!” They practice it a bit, but once they start the race, they fall over right off the bat.
TenTen, who is observing by a corner, couldn’t help laughing.
The three get up and finish the race in a rather awkward manner.
Next, the older student tells them to start counting from one. The first four freshmen will become that student’s slaves, and starting from Paeo will become his own slaves.
He says, the same rule applies like last yer, whoever wants to be pardoned must circle around him/herself for 50 rounds while balancing him/herself well. He asks if there’s anyone wants to do it.
Paeo raises her hand and says she wants to do it.
Paeo asks her gang if they want to be his slaves, just look at his face, how he could be a med student is beyond her.
The three end up being the only team which will do it.
The older student says if they fail the task, the time served will extend from one week to two weeks of slavery. He asks if there’s more wanting to do it. The three slowly lower their hands. Paeo thinks hard about it.
*Pun Jing-reed (spin a cricket) = one hand on an opposite ear while another hand hanging down to the ground then circle around oneself
Taliw asks loudly where they will get a cricket for a spin. Her question calls for a round of laughter. TenTen chuckles.
Paeo hits Taliw for unnecessarily provoking their seniors. The older student calls Taliw out at the front. Taliw says but she hurt her leg. He says forget it, don’t do drama on him.
To everyone’s surprise, TenTen walks to her and says he will do it for her. He starts ‘Pun Jing-reed’.
He finishes it and says, “I’m ThatRapee, second-year med student, doing it on behalf of TeeRaPat, first-year nurse student.”
A student hangs a sign around Taliw’s neck which reads, “Taliw, first-year nurse student, Pee TenTen’s dating partner” (aww)
“OK?” TenTen asks. He grabs her hand and pulls her away. The group cheers.
NamKang is upset so she walks away. Dan, with his mask on, follows her.
TenTen makes Taliw sit down. He checks her foot and ankle by pressing on it and asks if it hurts. She shakes her head so he moves to another spot. She cries out so he tells her to move the tip of her foot while he’s pressing on it. He says, “Up, down, up, down.” He asks if it still hurts. She shakes her head. He checks on it some more.
He looks at her and asks, “You’ve been doing well?”
She nods. He sits down next to her and says her face (a clown) now suits her well. She tries to smile and asks if he likes it. He says seeing the three of them together, it feels strange and they are just as ridiculous.
She tries to guess what he means. He says he means the whole gang come here to study together, like in the past.
He gets up and says, “All right. See you when school starts. You must pick me up at the faculty at noon sharp.”
He shows her the sign on her neck.
“We have to be dating partners for two weeks. Don’t be late. I don’t like being late.”
He turns to leave but turns back to say, “Also, what you told me last time, I won’t allow it. I will never let you go, remember that.”
She recalls how she told him they were no longer connected.
TenTen walks away.
NamKang tells Dan not to talk and stop following her. She says it won’t do any good and also annoying. He pulls off his mask and says he’s just worried if she’s OK. She says she’s not OK and wants to be alone.
“For what?” he ask.
“For whatever, and I won’t concede easily!”
“Even if it won’t do any good and is also annoying?” he asks.
“Stop it! Even if it’s annoying, it’s none of your business. We are nothing to each other.” she yells at him.
Dan puts his mask back on and walks away.
Taliw bumps into Dan. She asks the way to the nearest restroom. Dan tells the direction in detail. She asks to see his face because his voice sounds so familiar. He takes off his mask.
She recognizes Dan right away, that person who told her the way. She asks if he remembers her. He says of course. She says her name is Taliw. He reads the sign and says, “Taliw, first-year nurse student” He says he is Pee Dan.
“Nice to meet you.” she says and leaves.
At night, students in later years take turn to give blessings to the freshmen. Taliw sees Dan again so she asks if he’s in Nursing Faculty too. He says he’s in Political Science. He wishes her good luck.
NamKang stares at Taliw then wishes her good luck. Dan asks Paeo if she’s also a nurse student. Paeo says yes.
Taliw is back to folding paper-stars again.
School starts, Taliw waits for TenTen at the building. He smiles that she’s here. He walks to her and says let’s eat. She walks along with him and thinks, “I did it! I’m walking side by side with TenTen.”
She brings him food. When he wants to get up to help, she stops him and says it’s a freshman’s job.
“When will you go home? Mom Kaew missed you so much.” she asks. He gives her a glare then back to reading.
She says she will move out soon so she’s afraid mom Kaew will be lonely. This time TenTen looks at her.
She says her dad said it’s quite hectic at the restaurant and they’ve troubled his family so much already.
TenTen is back to reading again. She says actually it’s not that soon, but she thinks if he can come home, they will…
He says that’s enough, he gets it, why she has to talk so much.
She grabs his book and tells him to eat first. He starts eating and she’s happy to eat with him.
TenTen is in the same class with NamKang but he doesn’t pay attention to her.
Taliw walks home and notices a pick-up truck leaving the house. She runs fast and sees that there are boxes lying in front of the house. She beams to see TenTen back in the living room.
Kaew asks Taliw if she’s happy that TenTen came back to live here. She tells her to go help in the kitchen, TenTen shows up suddenly and she has nothing to welcome him.
Taliw beams while he glares at her. When no one is looking, TenTen lets out a smile.
NamKang comes to the coffee shop. A man says TenTen is an irresponsible person, he quit just like that. He says he will help her for now and will hire a new one as soon as possible.
She tells him to get two new staffs because she won’t come here again tomorrow. He asks if they are angry with him or something, why they all quit. She says it’s not that, studying become so tough lately. She apologizes to him.
She takes garbage bags outside as usual. She looks around and there’s no one there. She sits down at her usual spot. She looks at Dan’s phone number but doesn’t call him.
She starts talking, “The weather is nice today. You know, whenever I came to throw garbage here, I would think of you. I want to tell you so much that, on a bad day like this, I really want to see you. I was an idiot that day. You probably don’t want to come see an idiot again. I’m so sorry.”
Dan is nearby at the bench. He sits down by himself.
Taliw runs fast to go to the college. TenTen lowers the car window and asks, “Where are you going, stupid?”
“College, and I’m already late.”
He says it’s because she woke up late. She tells him to hurry and say what he wants already, she’s late already.
“TenTen! I’m already late!”
“It’s up to you, if you think running will get you there faster than coming with me.”
“Are you coming or not?”
She gets in his car. He says, “Welcome to college, Miss Nurse.”
“Yes, doctor.” she beams.
He puts on specs so she asks why he needs to do that. He says, “Left 300, Right 320” (not sure about the figures). He says he’s short-sighted.
When she’s about to say why she doesn’t…He smiles and teases, “What? How can you love me and not knowing it?”
He says even he knows that she has a slight astigmatism, but she refuses to wear specs because she’s afraid that her friends will tease she’s a grandma. She asks how he knows about it, must be YuYi who told him. He says he just knows.
They arrive at the college. Taliw tells TenTen that she will go to her class now, she’s almost late. She tells him to study well. He smiles and nods.
NamKang sees them. TenTen notices her but doesn’t stop to talk to her.
NamKang kicks a tire of his car and says, “You don’t care about me at all, do you?”
Paeo tells Taliw that her birthday is coming, what she’s going to treat them. Taliw says anything, just name it. Arm says King said there might be a surprise for her.
Taliw asks where King is these days. Arm says probably mending his heart. Taliw asks what about. Paeo hits him hard on his arm. Taliw asks why she did that.
Paeo says she’s hitting a mosquito. Taliw says it’s a bad deed to kill animals. Paeo prays for its soul. Taliw asks again where King disappeared to.
Paeo answers before Arm could, that King is just busy.
Paeo yells at Arm he won’t attend class today or what, this is Nursing Faculty and what faculty he’s in. She points him the way out of here. Arm grits his teeth and leaves.
TenTen doesn’t pay attention to NamKang while in the same class at all. Later, She sits down alone outside. Dan walks over and sits down next to her. She greets him.
He says when he’s bored or lazy, there’s a place he will go, it’s beautiful and very quiet. He asks if today she’s bored or lazy. She asks if it can be beyond that. He says of course, there’s a place he will go when he’s really feeling down and doesn’t want to see anyone. He asks if she wants to go there.
They are in his car together. She says since she was a child, she’s never lost to anyone or anything. No matter how great that person was, she would always win. She never competes with someone who has nothing before. That woman, she can never understand it.
Dan asks if she means Taliw. She says when she’s with TenTen, she never felt the feeling that he knows she’s there. It’s like he doesn’t see her, doesn’t care. She asks if it were him, what he would do.
Dan asks if she means being next to someone who doesn’t see him there. He says even a pretty-colored flower which smells nice and stands out, not everyone will like it, some people have their own kind which they will like.
“I still don’t get it.” she says.
“Nong NamKang, will you like me one day? If, in this world, that guy, 10 out of 10, doesn’t exist, will you like me?” he asks.
“No…I don’t know. What’s the point here?”
“The point is you have your own kind of flower which you will like. Everyone is like that. We have our own kind which we will like. The person, we like, also has the kind he/she will like. No matter how hard we try, we won’t be able to change ourselves to become the kind we weren’t born to be. Do you understand that?”
“No, we can do it. We must change how he/she feels. One day we will achieve it, if we try hard enough.” she says.
They spend time together.
Taliw waits for TenTen but he doesn’t show up. She asks a teacher where all med students go. The teacher says there’s a specialist in Thai Traditional Medicine comes to give a lecture today, and she can go listen to him if she wants.
Taliw follows TenTen to a lecture room. She sits down next to him. He motions her to take a look at the lecturer. She recognizes him, he’s that uncle from the forest. She wants to greet him but TenTen shushes her to be quiet.
The uncle finishes his lecture. TenTen and Taliw greet him. Taliw asks if he’s a teacher here. The uncle says no, he’s not, once in a while, this college would ask him to give a lecture on Thai Traditional Medicine. He asks TenTen if he has decided what to become. TenTen says he wants to become a doctor. Taliw says she wants to become a nurse.
The uncle says they belong together, one person is skillful while another is kind. He says being a doctor, one must stay knowledgeable, and for a nurse, she must have good heart and kindness.
TenTen asks what if he’s interested in Thai Traditional Med. Uncle asks if he really means it, it’s tough and the earning is much less than working in a private hospital.
TenTen says he means it, it piqued his interest since he got out of the forest last time. Uncle gives him his name card and says he has an after-hour clinic, TenTen can go there for training when he’s a third-year student.
Taliw asks if there’s a nurse in Thai Traditional Medicine as well. Uncle says a doctor must have someone assist him. He tells TenTen not to change his mind and he will be waiting. Uncle leaves.
Taliw asks TenTen if he’s going to go there to practice Thai Traditional Med. TenTen says yes. She says she will follow him there. He looks at her and asks should she not ask him first, whether or not he wants her to do that.
She asks if he wants her to follow him. He says he will think about it, he doesn’t know it yet.
She says if he’s still not sure then she will ask something else, what day is tomorrow. He says it’s Tuesday, stupid. She says correct, it’s Tuesday, a very important day too.
She folds stars again. Kaew asks Bomb what day is today. Han says it’s Tuesday. Kaew asks what date and month of this Tuesday. Both men have no clues. She asks if both don’t remember that it’s their children’s birthday. Both men shout that that’s it. Kaew suggests they surprise them.
In the car, Taliw tries to remind TenTen about today but he turns the music louder. They arrive home. Taliw says why the house is so quiet, what to eat now and she’s so hungry. They walk into the house.
Suddenly, Kaew and her gang greet them from upstairs, “Happy Birthday!”
Taliw claps her hands and says to TenTen, “Happy Birthday to you!” He just nods. She asks for her turn since they born on the same day. “Nonsense.” he teases. She says he always teases her, whatever she wants, he won’t let her have it.
Episode 15 Preview
Kaew: “This kind of matter, must use here…more than here.”
Bomb: “His daughter wants to be a trainee here.”
TenTen: “Who is that?”
TenTen: “Let’s go separately.”
Taliw: “Why’s that?”
TenTen: “We really don’t suit each other.”
OK, for TenTen, he took her in his car and let her go to college with him, and come home together. Hurray! That’s such a big step forward🙂