A short story inspired by the piece below from the Zine Group Exhibition: Zine Fest
Artist: Claire Samani
approximately 18″ x 12″
CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
That One Drawing 🖼️
Day in, day out. Going to school became tedious. The only things keeping Ronin sane were her girls, Dee & Vebz. Now, she was just waiting for the day to end so she could crawl into bed & just relax.
English just finished & Ronin was on her way to Art. She finds her seat & listens to the teacher for a few minutes before she totally checks out. Ronin grabs a piece of paper & a pencil & starts to sketch some random things. She doesn’t like what she has done & she starts over again & again & again…. 😐 At the same time, a boy across the table looks at what she’s been doing, interested why this cute girl has been starting over so many times.
Ronin starts to get upset that she can’t draw something & gives up. She puts her head on the table, face down just waiting for class to end. The bell rings & she’s the first one out the door. The same boy watches her leave & picks up the last drawing she did & sees that she tried drawing a hand. He takes it home & thinks why Ronin threw it away. Then he has an idea…. 💡
Ronin leaves to meet up with her girls & complains how she couldn’t think of anything good to draw. Dee gives her a smile 😊
Vebz goes, “Ro, don’t trip chocolate chip.” 😉
A few days later, Ronin comes into class, goes straight to her seat & again, puts her head on the table, not knowing that the same boy shyly watches her. Ronin quickly gets up to get her stuff & sees him trying to shift his eyes away quickly 😯
She doesn’t really get a good look at him, but honestly she doesn’t really care at the moment. Soon enough he becomes busy with his own work & Ronin gets busy with hers 📝
The day before, he thought about the drawing she made 🤔 He asked his brothers about it too. They were trying to give him all kinds of ideas but all he did was look confused.
He had an idea the day he saw her drawing & finally decided to go with it.
Back in class, Ronin realizes that she never really met this particular boy, but she always sees him around. She knows of his brothers but not him. He starts to become interesting to her since he was pretty much the only kid in class she didn’t know. How did she not know him? Hell, how did she not realize he was even there? Ronin goes over to him & taps him on the shoulder. He turns toward her a little stunned that someone was talking to him, that RONIN was talking to him. He looks at her & with a cute smile greets her in a shy but happy tone.
“Oh, hi.” 😄
Ronin is completely frozen after getting a good look at his face & forgets why she even went over to him in the first place. Still stunned & now completely dumbfounded, she dashes back to her seat 😣 Feeling embarrassed she asks to go to the bathroom & tries to PULL HERSELF TOGETHER (COME ON GIRL). Ronin comes back & this time she feels a tap on her shoulder. Without a second thought, she angrily turns because she was so embarrassed earlier but then she sees that the person who tapped her was none other than the boy. He looks around but finally makes eye contact with her for a second to greet her with a little nervousness in his voice.
“Hi. We haven’t formally met but I’m Jun Jeon” 😊
She softens at his attempt to talk calmly & replies to him.
“Hi. I’m Ronin Moon.”
He takes the empty seat next to Ronin. She keeps calm but she knows inside she’s telling herself, “Don’t do something dumb. Don’t do something dumb. You better be chill. BE CHILL. He’s just another boy. You got this chica.” 😐😐😐
While Ronin is zoned out, she doesn’t realize she dropped her pencil. Once she notices, she goes to pick it up without looking, only to find her hand grabbing his. She quickly pulls back & he just places Ronin’s pencil in front of her. She looks at him & can’t help but notice his cute smile. Ronin tries to hide her red face after that little encounter & then she realizes that Jun is asking her something. She comes back to Earth & asks what he said 😅
He replies, “I was asking when you were free but you just kept looking into space.”
Ronin feels dumb & scratches her head in embarrassment. Jun looks at her & laughs at how cute she is.
Ronin finally replies that she is free next week after school. Just then the bell rings & they both grab their things to leave. Ronin leaves in opposite direction but Jun forgets to tell her that he’s good to hangout next week so he runs down the hall, gets her attention but says nothing, instead he pants & just gives her a thumbs up 👍
After school the next week, Ronin starts to feel a little nervous. Where was he taking her? What were they going to do? She remembers that he wasn’t at school today & then she thinks a little.
“Maybe he wasn’t interested.” 😔
An hour went by & that was it Ronin felt crushed. She was stood up. She couldn’t believe she thought that Jun would like her. Everyone had already left & Ronin was in front of school by herself just about to cry because this one boy, this stupid Jun Jeon stood her up.
Just then, Ronin gets a text from Dee & Vebz asking to meet up somewhere. Feeling completely dejected Ronin decides she would rather hangout with some real homies & forget about whats his face. Dee texts Ronin where to meet them & she Ubers there. She finds herself at Cafe Maji & looks around for Dee & Vebz but she can’t find them instead she is greeted by another face. Jun Jeon.
Ronin has mixed feelings. Why is he here? Why is he all happy? Did he realize that he left her at school? But she stops to admire how he looks. She looks at him & wonders how he can make a simple white button up & black hat look so good. His hair just covering eyebrows & framing his gentle looking face. Ronin stops & sees how happy he is to see her, waving brightly & smiling from ear to ear. Jun explains that he had some problems with his brothers & couldn’t go to school today & asked Dee & Vebz to text Ronin to meet him here. The two of them were finally seated & had a little date. A few hours flew by & they were just having fun talking & laughing with each other. Jun shares stories about his brothers & how he has the most fun teasing Jimmy & pranking the others with Theo.
It becomes dark & Ronin tells him that she should be getting home. He quickly asks for the check & pays without hesitation & says that he’d take her home. He drops Ronin off at her front door. 🏡
“See you tomorrow, Ronin.”
He gives her a quick hug before he leaves in embarrassment.
A few weeks go by & the two of them become friendly. Talking freely, hanging out during lunch, texting. Then Saturday comes, so no school. Ronin asks Dee & Vebz to hangout to tell them about her little event with Jun. Ronin meets up with her friends at Vebz’ house. When she get to Vebz’ house, she sees a couple of extra cars outside 🚗 🚙
Ronin thinks to out loud, “There must be a party going on or something.”
She walks in to find Jimmy & Theo being all cuddly with Dee & Vebz. Shocked, Ronin screams only to see Ryan, Jin, August & Jay running in asking what’s wrong. Ronin has no idea what’s going on & then it clicks…
Jimmy & Dee.
Theo & Vebz.
They all knew each other & Ronin’s two homegirls were friends with Jun. That’s how he knew to ask Dee & Vebz to text her. After getting all caught up with Dee & Vebz’ little romantic stories, she wonders where Jun is.
Ronin roams around the house & finds Jun in the dining room just sitting there holding something. She wonders what he’s doing. She goes back to the others but they all tell her to go & talk to him. She hesitates for awhile but she is eventually forced to go talk to him 😏 The others stand in the hallway making sure she can’t escape. Ronin turns back towards the dining room & starts to walk towards Jun. He is still sitting at the table fumbling with a piece of paper in his hands. He seems really nervous, fidgeting around. He gets up & paces back & forth, mumbling to himself. Ronin feels a little worried & now SHE tries to calm HIM down. Jun keeps his head down & hands her the piece of paper. Confused, she takes it from him & carefully opens it to see her unfinished hand drawing completed & remembers when she dropped her pencil.
He finds enough courage to ask her one thing………..
“Ronin, will you be my girlfriend?”