Chapter 30:

A Fresh Start [END]

Annika Says No!

Addictions are a strange phenomenon.

It’s not something we were born with, yet we feel as if it is a part of our nature. Maybe we’re all meant to be hooked into something. Humans are pleasure-seeking creatures. They do whatever makes them feel good. After all, who doesn’t want to live life doing what they want to do?

Some of our desires are good, some of our desires are bad, and some are in-between. It might be a matter of perspective, because people always tend to have different views towards their own desires.

Maybe it’s harmful, maybe it’s safe. Maybe you don’t care either way.

Whatever the case may be, when you try to get rid of an addiction, it’s like trying to rip yourself apart.


“Y-Yes!” I gulped down on my throat as I watched the snow-haired lady approach me.

She had the same jogging outfit as the one she wore when we first met in UniverCity, a blue gray hoodie and black tights.

It had been a week since our encounter with Suvi, and life was pretty much chill and peaceful these days. As promised, she had left us alone and had nothing to do with us anymore, which was a huge relief. I had already healed from my wounds, so I’m in great shape now.

“You were planning to buy from this store weren’t you?”

I slowly shifted my head towards a stall selling cigarette packs and vape kits.

“I just wanted to take a rest here!”

“He’s been staring at them for five minutes.” the person on the stall said.

Annika furrowed her eyebrows towards me.

“I-I can’t help it!” I scratched my head and gave her a sheepish smile.

She grabbed hold of my hand and pulled me away with the force of a bull.

“W-Woah! Calm down! You’re gonna pull my arm off!”

“I don’t care! We need to get away immediately!” Annika continued to drag me away.

Bad habits can never be erased. They will always be a part of who you are as a person. The good news is, they can simply be replaced by good habits.

That is why I decided to jog with Annika, to get my blood pumping in other ways!

But….it was exhausting!

“Stay hard, Kwan! You can do this!” Annika gave me a glance as she ran beside me.

“T-This is tough!” I said, with a bucket load of sweat leaking down my hair.

“And I thought you were supposed to be a martial artist!”

“Haaaaaah! But I haven’t trained in a long time!”

“No excuses! We’re running all the way to the seaside!”

“That’s way too far!”

We jogged through the cityscape, moving through the busy streets and passing through one building after another. Annika refused to stop, so I had to push myself to the limit just to keep up with her momentum. My legs ached to the max, and I could feel my breath leaving my soul, but I didn’t want to stop. Annika was getting further and further away, and that burnt a fire inside of me.

There’s no way I’m losing to Annika that easily! I’m better than that! I have my pride as a man!

“They don’t know me, son! They don’t know me, son!” I repeated some motivational guru’s lines like a battle chant. “Who’s gonna carry the boats?!”

People looked at me as if I was some sort of deranged man, but I didn’t care. I needed to get through this, no matter what it took.

“I’m Kwan Kalor, the hardest man alive!”

Wait, that came out wrong.

That was extra motivation for me to keep on running so I could spare myself the embarrassment.

After what felt like a never ending agonizing run, we had finally reached one of UniverCity’s biggest wonders, the Seaside Plaza.

As the name suggests, it was a huge plaza with a grand view overlooking the deep blue sea. From here, you could watch ships and boats come and go in different directions. People sat by the restaurants and cafes hanging right beside the sea view, indulging themselves in delicious meals. Birds walked through the cobblestone roads, scavenging for scraps of food.

Annika stood by the edge of the sidewalk, with her eyes fixated on the waves before her. Meanwhile, I bent over and placed my hands on my knees, trying to catch my breath.

“Can you feel it? The ocean breeze?” Annika spread her arms in the air, with the wind blowing through her hair.

I stood up and felt the breeze hit me in the face, striking me with the smells of saltwater. I inhaled all the breeze, and let out a big gust of air.

“It feels good.”

I continued to take in all the fresh air, before a figure caught my eyes. There was a girl who danced on the beach. And not just any girl. A tanned babe, with two humongous badonkers poking out of her orange tiger camo bikini!

The girl I first flirted upon my arrival here in UniverCity!

She noticed me with a shocked look on her face, then she smiled and gave me a wave. I waved back happily with a huge smile on my face.

“Hey.” Annika looked at me with stern eyes.

“W-What is it, Annika?”

“Who’s that girl supposed to be?”

“Just an acquaintance.”

Annika raised her eyebrow.

“You’re looking at her. In that way.”

“That way?”

“That way.”

I scratched my head and looked away. “Well, she has a sexy body, I won’t lie to you!”

Annika crossed her arms and clicked her tongue.

“But guess what?”

I pointed my finger guns at Annika.

“You’d look even sexier if you decided to put a bikini on.” I winked.

Annika looked away with some pink tint on her cheeks.

“Hmph! You’re such a naughty boy!”

Sometimes, things just can’t be helped. We’re only human beings after all. But as long as you have the best people by your side, you can grow with them together.

“I bet you’d look good in a bikini too, Kwan.”

“Ayoooo?” I flinched with an uncomfortable feeling on my chest.

“Now you know how it feels!”

Annika stuck out her tongue at me.

Someday…..I’m going to become a man who’s truly worthy of her love.

F.C Fondness