Jae Faces A Conflict

Jae Faces A Conflict

“Hello, Father.”

“Hello, Son. Had a good weekend?”

“Yes, I did.”

“What did you do?”

“I went out for dinner on Saturday night with my friends. On Sunday, I didn’t go anywhere. How was your trip to Tokyo?”

“It was fine. Next time, I’ll take you with me or send you in my place. Your mother wants you to come for dinner this Saturday.”

“Sorry, Father, but I have already made plans. How about a raincheck?”

His father stared at him, his expression one of displeasure. “Raincheck? You would disappoint your mother who has been looking forward to seeing you? It has been a long time since you visited.”

“I know, Father, but I’ve already made plans.”

“Well, cancel them.”

“I can’t.”

“What do you mean, you can’t?”

“Why can’t Mother have the dinner on Sunday instead?”

“Why should she? To accommodate you? You’ve got a lot of nerve, young man. Do you think when I was your age and your grandfather invited me to have dinner with him and your grandmother I could tell him that I can’t go because I have other plans and to reschedule the dinner?”

“Father, I don’t mean to cause any inconvenience to Mother or to you but I have already made plans which I don’t want to cancel. I’m sure Mother wouldn’t mind having the dinner on Sunday instead of Saturday.”

“What about Mrs. and Mrs. Namgung?”

Jae stared at his father. “What about them?” he asked, puzzled.

“Your mother invited them and their daughter, Nari.”

Jae sighed. When would his parents stop trying to set him up with their friends’ daughters? “I might have known,” he muttered under his breath.

“What did you say?”

“I’m sorry, Father but, I’m not going to change my plans for Saturday. I’m sure Nari and her parents wouldn’t mind having dinner on Sunday.”

“Why do you refuse to change your plans? Who the devil are these plans with?”

“They’re with a friend.” His father would blow a gasket if he knew that his plans were with Abiola. He wouldn’t understand why he would prefer to pass up having dinner with Nari and her parents.

“And this friend is more important than your mother and me? What about blood being thicker than water?”

“Father, I’m not saying that my friend is more important than my family–“

“Well, that’s the impression you’re giving. You refuse to change your plans for your mother’s sake. She will think that this friend of yours means more to you than she does.”

Jae doubted that his mother would think that or would make such a big fuss about him having other plans. “I honestly think that if we were to ask Mother to have the dinner on Sunday instead of Saturday, she would do it. And, if the Namgungs can’t join us on Sunday, then, Mother can invite them for dinner another time.”

“Fine! You go ahead and call your mother. Break her heart and ruin her plans by telling her that you don’t want to come for dinner on Saturday because of one of your friends.”

“Father–“

“I have business calls to make. Excuse me!” He walked briskly out of the office, his expression thunderous.

Jae sighed heavily. He wished his father would stop trying to control his life. He wasn’t a child. He was a young adult who had a right to live his life as he pleased. Cancelling his date with Abiola was out of the question. It was something he was looking forward to. He couldn’t wait to see her again.