3 Recollecting Memories

    "I-I-I really like you! Please go out with me!"

    "I'm sorry but can't go out with you right now."

    "A-ah.... ok."

    Seojoon watched silently as the high school girl walked away with a dejected expression. Now, four events that he had predicted that had came true. All he had to do now was go home and do his homework, study a bit, and read some books.

    He immediately made his way out of school and into the outside world. The world seemed to be brighter than usual for Seojoon as he started to dash across the city blocks.

    Trees covered in a small layer of snow painted the world white for him as each successive minute of running made his breath more visible in the cold air.

    He passed a multitude of sleek cars out on the pavement next to him that seemed to flow instead of roll. Seojoon was passing his neighborhood grocery store when he suddenly received a call.

    He picked up his phone and answered.

    "Seojoon-ah, can you buy some milk and other groceries on the way home? School is over right?"

    "Yes, School is over."

    "That's great! I'll give you some extra money to buy a book as well. Deal?"

    Seojoon paused, a wave of nostalgia washing over him before giving his reply. "Sure Umma, I'll be home in thirty minutes."

    "Perfect, I'll send the list of items to buy along with the money in a sec."

    "'Kay, bye Umma."

    He quickly entered the grocery store and went to the milk section and looked for the jug that had the furthest expiration date.

    "Omo, you look pretty today~"

    "Thank you, I did my best."

    "It's such a waste to look so good when you are only going shopping. You must be going somewhere special right after. Didn't you say that today was your birthday?"

    There was a ding as Seojoon received a message from his mother containing a list of things he needed to buy. Soon after, there was another notification saying that a hundred dollars had been deposited to his account.

    Seojoon loaded the milk jug and made his way around the shop, picking things off of the isles and placing vegetables in bio degradable plastic bags.

    "So where are you going? For your birthday?"

    "Fufufufu, my husband is taking me to the famous steak diner in the next city. I can't wait!"

    "How romantic, a date with just you and your husband."

    "To be honest, I wanted my son to come as well be he was going on about some game that was going to be released today."

    Seojoon stopped what he was doing and blankly stared at the package of cheese in his hand.

    He felt as though he had missed something important, something very important. But after a moment of thinking to himself, he shrugged and finished shopping.

    When Seojoon left the store, several holograms floated high up in the sky, flashing advertisements in a natural light. Most of them featured a game that would apparently release tonight.

    Seojoon stared at the advertisements for a second before continuing along. He had more important things to do than playing games.

    Seojoon ran around carrying his grocery bags until he came upon a small little building. He took a deep breath before finally walking in.

    The bell on the door let a crisp jingle as the voice of an old man called out to him.

    "Back again already? Didn't you buy ten books just the other weekend? Seojoon-ah, are you trying to make your parents go bankrupt?"

    "Ahahaha.... nice to see you again ajushi."

    "Bah! I'm not young or shameless enough to be called ajushi. Hurry up and pick out a book already."

    Seojoon gave the old book keeper a wide grin before heading off the the bookshelves. The book keeper watched from the sidelines with a sigh.

    "These days no one wants to buy books except for you. It's just so easy to buy a book online and read electronically. If it weren't for your idiotic desire to read physical books, this shop would've closed down years ago."

    "Sorry for being an idiot ajushi."

    "Bah! If you were an idiot, all those other kids at your school would be rocks. Now hurry up and pick a book."

    Seojoon nodded his head and scanned the rows for anything new to read when he suddenly let out a frown.

    He had read all of the books on the shelves. Every single one. He could remember each and every story that slumbered within the book covers with almost perfect recollection. There was not a single book that he had left untouched.

    Now that he thought about it, Seojoon had read at least one book every single day for the past 22 years. He had nearly read almost all of the books in his current time and even the books that were to come in the near future. He had nothing new to read.

    Seojoon let out a groan as he cursed at his time skip for the first time. He then dejectedly picked up his groceries from the floor before slowly heading out the door.

    "Not going to buy anything today?" Asked the book keeper in surprise.

    ".... I'm just not feeling it today."

    His one source of entertainment, the one joy in his life. Gone, reduced to a futuristic event that would take place in twenty two years in time.

    The book keeper let out a satisfied nod.

    "You should forget about books for once and have some fun. Kids like you shouldn't be reading all day. At least interact with other people, make some friends."

    What would he do now? Study? He couldn't study when he already knew everything he needed for school. He wouldn't be able to bear the torture of reading something that he could recite.

    "At least try to act like other kids. All my grandson does is play games, even when I told him multiple times to stop. His grades suffer from it you know? But if a smart kid like you plays a video game from time to time, I bet that you will still be able to retain your excellent grades and relax a bit. I read an article once saying that over studying will lead to mental problems relating to stress and a lack of communication skills-"

    Seojoon immediately perked up.

    "Did you say games?"

    "My god, you must've eaten something different today. The boy who lived for books is interested in playing a game? Hah! I guess I can live another twenty years after all."

    Seojoon furrowed his brows deep in thought.

    He remembered that there was a popular game that came out during his high school years. A game that remained unrivaled twenty years after its release. He thought back to the conversation the two ladies at the grocery store had, his classmates, and even his teacher.

    A game was being released tonight, for sure. However, could it be the same game that would eventually take over the gaming world?

    What was it called? What was the game called again?

    Seojoon glanced out of the window and stared into the sky. His eye caught a hologram that flashed in a multiple of colors as it opened a window to a fantasy world. His eyes were drawn to the top of the advertisement where golden words written in medieval font flashed flamboyantly.

    [Rising Worlds

    Releasing today.]

    Immediately, Seojoon was flashed back in time to when he was out in the snow, staring into the night sky with a cup of coffee in his hand. The scene from then started to merge with his current reality as everything became a part of the same canvas.


    "Tomorrow...." whispered Seojoon softly as he saw the snowflakes from that night land on his warm face. He could no tell if he was seeing reality or an illusion. All he knew that both worlds had the same exactly thought.

    Tomorrow.... I'll-

    "Today.... I'll-"

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    -give the game a try.

    "-give the game a try."

    The bell on the shop door let out a wild jingle as Seojoon ran out the door with his grocery bags swaying in the wind.
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