02: Transition

“Tiffany?”

She looked up from her eel bento to see Yuri standing beside her.

“Hey, what’s up? Did you get my email?”

“Yes, I did. I read it and it was good, as usual.” Yuri crossed her arms and grinned. “How do you even think up plots like that?”

Tiffany put down her chopsticks. “Eh, I get ideas here and there. Is there something you need to talk to me about? How’s the new job going?”

“It’s going well! Well, exhuasting, of course, having to deal with even more authors and their editors, but it’s definitely rewarding. And your stories really are helping Stewie along.” Yuri paused.

“But…?” Tiffany raised her eyebrows.

“But.” Yuri sighed. “I was worried about this when Kyuhyun offered me the position, but, well. Okay. So, when you send me your stories, I still do look over them for you, right?”

“Yup.”

“I mean, I really like being your editor, but, well, since the workload has suddenly piled up, I’ve really got my hands full.” Looking apologetically at Tiffany, Yuri shuffled her feet uncomfortably. “I feel really bad. Like I’m abandoning you or something, but…yeah.”

“That’s fine, I’ll just read it over myself, then.” Tiffany chewed on a mouthful of rice. “Don’t worry about it, Yuri. I know you’re busy. “

“Actually, I’d prefer to have someone read it over for you.” Yuri fished around in her pockets. “While you’re usually pretty okay with grammar and the like, it’d be better if a different pair of eyes were to go over your pieces as a whole. Aha, here we go!”

Tiffany frowned slightly at the crumpled notepaper in front of her. “Whose email is this?”

“This is your new editor.” Yuri beamed, clearly pleased with herself. “Just email her your soft copies like you used to do with me, and she’ll take care of the rest.”

“But I don’t even know who they are!” Tiffany squinted at the writing. “Taepeapea999? Please can I just read it over myself? I’ll be extra careful!”

Yuri looked at her sternly. “Tiffany Hwang, as your chief editor I am requiring that you send your stories to your new editor. No buts,” she said, raising her eyebrows at Tiffany, who closed her mouth.

“Yuri…”

“Aegyo doesn’t work on me. Send, or else. Are we all clear?”

Tiffany nodded forlornly.

“Right, then, happy writing! I expect your story by the end of this month.” Yuri grinned and patted Tiffany on the head. “Don’t worry, I’m still Yuri. You don’t have to look up to me too much, alright?”

“Yah!”

After the other girl had left, Tiffany poked at her lunch while glaring at the email address. “Such a bother…you better not waste my time, taepeapea999.”

Leaning back in her chair, Tiffany let out a sigh of relief. After a back-aching four hours, her latest story was finally complete. She stretched and was about to send her story off to Yuri when she remembered the little slip of paper.

“Aish, really…” Rummaging around in her bag, Tiffany pulled out the notepaper, its corners now significantly more rumpled. She smoothed it out and opened up her email.

To: taepeapea999@xmail.com
From: fanylovespink@xmail.com
Subject:
Attachment: sept22.doc
 
Hello!
This is Tiffany Hwang. Yuri gave me your email and said that you’re my new editor? I hope we work well together. I’ve attached the final draft of this week’s story; I’d appreciate some feedback on it! 
 
Thanks,
Tiffany
 

She snorted to herself. Appreciate it, my butt. But Yuri had asked, so Tiffany would humor her, at least for a while. The annoying thing, however, was that it would now take longer for her to submit her stories – and that was assuming this taepeapea999 was going to reply quickly.

Staring at her screen for a few more moments, Tiffany abruptly stood up and yawned. It wasn’t like it’d be done in a few minutes; there was no point in waiting now. Better turn in and wake up early for her classes tomorrow.

“Hmm?”

Tiffany frowned at the neat stack of papers on the desk. Looking around, she saw that most of the other students in the library were studying quietly. Tiffany narrowed her eyes. Who had invaded her personal study niche?

She flipped the first piece of paper over, hoping to find a name to track down. Then, Tiffany’s eyes widened. Shoot, wasn’t this her story? What the heck was it doing here?! What if someone saw it?

The guy next to her gave her a look as she sat down noisily, trying to hide the sheaf of papers. After giving him an apologetic smile, Tiffany glanced around furtively before looking more carefully at the papers.

“Really? …oh. Wait, what?”

“Shh!”

“Sorry.”

Tiffany shrunk into her seat, embarrassed that she had started to talk to herself. But she couldn’t help it, not after seeing this mysterious hard copy of her story – with red pen marks all over it.

All of her typoes were circled, tense usage underlined, spelling marked out. Even her word choice – what, couldn’t she use “voiced” there? What was this – no, who was this, that they would so very cruelly point out all her mistakes in red?

Tiffany growled – silently, for her neighbor’s sake. There was only one person who had access to this story, new as it was. Only one person who might even had bothered going through each line, picking out all the flaws and ambiguities.

Oh, yes, Tiffany was going to have a talk with this taepeapea999 person.

Pulling out her phone, she waited for her email app to load. But as she tapped the table in irritation, Tiffany read through the markings more carefully.

Hmm. The red wasn’t just arbitrary. The spelling, yes, grammar, yes, even the way she phrased things, it was all questioned. But the more Tiffany squinted at the clear, bright red markings, the more she realized how much sense they made.

Huh.

Who was taepeapea999?

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