Surviving Jihyun (TW; SA)
Jihyun is reunited with Chiwoo in chapter 4. Up till now we know that Jihyun. is aware of the fact that Chiwoo changed school, moved away and purposefully did not tell him where. Part of him thinks it is because of the murder charge (and he believes Chiwoo thinks he is guilty), and this because he doesn’t seem to comprehend that Chiwoo might have agency or personal feelings about being subjected to sexual assault.
So, Jihyun knows Chiwoo has moved away (even remarks it, telling him not to run), and yet, his first reaction is hugging Chiwoo.
Anyone around them can see that Chiwoo is distressed, from a random professor, to Kyujin, who comes running. Yet, Chiwoo’s relationship with Jihyun has always been warped, and Chiwoo knows that Jihyun is more than able and willing to cause him trouble (example. beating up people who might show kindness to Chiwoo), so, with an absolutely HEARTBREAKINg look of resignation, Chiwoo tells everyone that it is okay, Jihyun is his friend.
Jihyun then proceeds to drag Chiwoo away and ignore about 5 or 6 “Stops”, before proceeding to kiss him. He lets go of him only when Chiwoo bites him and pushes him away. Chiwoo has to literally draw blood.
And yet, even this time, Jihyun’s concern is always for himself, as usual. His reaction is annoyance. After having dragged Chiwoo to a secluded place, kissed him against his will, admitted that he knew Chiwoo probably wants to run, his reaction is “I am about to get really pissed, how can you treat me like this?”. Jihyun said sorry, he has said sorry so he expects Chiwoo to accept the apology and act naturally. And here, I think, there is the core of his character.
I don’t think Jihyun ever thought Chiwoo was blameless. He is telling the truth here, he does think that Chiwoo’s attempts to ignore his past “I like you” were the cause of his rapist behavior. Nothing clearer than some quite obvious victim blaming, here.
The interaction is interrupted only because Jihyun has to go, and you can see the way he positions his hand (on the side of Chiwoo’s head) to trap him. Chiwoo is LITERALLY FROZEN IN FEAR. And from this point onward, he expresses both a dislike to being touched and an uneasy anxiety at the idea of going to school (when he finds out Jihyun joined his school).
This is how the author wants us to look at their first interaction in the comic. Absolute egoism, blindness, from Jihyun’s part, and frozen fear from Chiwoo’s part.
Ah yes, the good look of a love interest, trapping your terrified lover against a wall, and dismissing his fear at looking at you or being around you, because that is not important. Jihyun’s feelings, his need to be around Chiwoo is more important than anything Chiwoo might say or need.