Losing to the Heat 70

Great. Another briefing. Why were there so many things to be briefed about? Taeyeon had looked forward to sneaking to Tiffany’s block after the qualifiers to check on her but this had to pop up. Well, apparently, there was going to be loads to do tomorrow and they had to be reminded like children.

10:15 SYSTEM TRACK TEST
11:30 FAN SIGNING SESSION
13:30 DRIVERS TRACK PARADE
14:00 PIT LANE OPEN
14:15 PIT LANE CLOSED
14:30 THE INTERNATIONAL TUSCAN SERIES RACE

There were 27 laps to clear; the entire race taking up to 80 minutes to be completed, so they would be done by 15:50, latest. But the race wasn’t bothering her even though she was aware of the stiff competition. What Taeyeon wasn’t comfortable with was the fan signing session. Like seriously? She was supposed to smile and sign autographs for an hour? She’d totally forgotten about this feature of official races amidst all the drama that surrounded the race and now she was beginning to regret her decision to come here.

“Unnie.”

Taeyeon looked up and smiled at the familiar faces. “Krystal. Jessica.” She nodded at Jessica. “You’re back in form. I saw your laps.”

“Not quite. I’m almost back to a hundred percent. Almost.”

“Twelfth isn’t too shabby.”

“It’s gonna be tough to make top five when I’m that far back.”

“Tough, but possible.”

Jessica smiled. “Anything is possible. By the way, Yuri is here too. She told me to send her regards. She’ll spot you a couple of free maintenance checks if you win.”

Taeyeon grinned. “Tell her to get her tools ready. And tell her thanks. She’s a good friend.”

“That’s Yuri. Anyway, we have to go. See you tomorrow.”

Taeyeon nodded. “See ya.” She spotted Cara and headed over, tapping the woman on her shoulder. “You’re not gonna beat me tomorrow.”

Cara grinned. “Words are cheap, Taeyeon.”

Taeyeon shook her head. “Sometimes, they cost me.”

Cara threw back her head and laughed. “It happens to the best of us.” Her eyes roved the crowd before returning to Taeyeon’s. “Where’s your leash girl?”

“She’s not my leash. I don’t need a leash.”

“Oh, she’s a goddamn leash and don’t you deny it.” Cara laughed. “But she’s a very hot leash and I’d gladly be leashed by her.”

“You can forget about it. She’s only got eyes for me.”

“Confident much, Taeyeon.”

“No reason not to be.”

“I envy you.”

“You have Amy.”

“Between you and me, things with her have been rocky lately.”

“Oh shit. Sorry.”

Cara shrugged. “I’m married to my job. And it’s demanding. I barely get to spend any time in London.”

“That sucks.”

“Life goes on and I’ve got races to race.” Cara smiled. “Go easy on me tomorrow?”

“No way.”

“Same here.”

Po approached them and Taeyeon turned to her. “Taeyeon, there’s an interview you need to take.”

Argh. She didn’t want to take interviews. But Cara laughed and patted her shoulder. “It’s a necessary evil. Just do it.”

“Yeah, yeah. I’ll do it.”

As it turned out, Tiffany was being interviewed before her, which explained her absence from the post-briefing crowd. They locked gazes but said nothing more than the standard greeting. It was weird. Then, Tiffany grabbed her hand and gave it a quick squeezed as they passed each other by and that got Taeyeon grinning as she followed Po into the interview room.

Much to her surprise, Unce Im was there in the interview room with her mother.

“Uncle Im, I thought you were only coming tomorrow?”

“This morning’s meeting was rescheduled so we decided to fly out on an earlier flight.”

“Is Hayeon with you?” Taeyeon asked, throwing a glance at her mother.

“She came with us, of course. She’s with Yoona right now, getting some food.”

Taeyeon smiled at the thought of her sister pigging out with Yoona. Suddenly, she couldn’t wait to be done with her interview. She couldn’t wait to see Hayeon.

“We’ll be outside, waiting. Hayeon and Yoona should be here by the time you’re done with your interview.”

Taeyeon nodded and was taken by surprise when Uncle Im gave her a big hug.

“Well done, Taeyeon. We’re very proud of your timing for the qualifiers. You’ve not only done us proud but also our company and country.”

“Thanks, Uncle Im.” Taeyeon smiled at the man who was to be her stepfather and wished her mother could have done the same. But some things would never change.

“You did well, Taeyeon,” said her mother, suddenly.

Taeyeon stared at her. Maybe some things could change. “Thanks,” she replied, awkwardness overflowing inside. And with a nod, she turned to join Po at the table and smiled at the interviewer. “Hi, I’m Kim Taeyeon of Ssamyoong.”

It was time to put Po’s advice to good use.

“You’re the dark horse that came out of nowhere and now everyone is curious to know more about you. Where exactly did you come from?”

“Nowhere. Mr Im discovered I could drive after getting engaged to my mother and asked me if I was interested in joining his company.”

“There have been rumours about some involvement in street racing. Have you ever been involved in one?”

Taeyeon blinked, her mind reeling from the question that threatened to dirty the waters but Po intervened.

“We would like to keep the questions on track about the upcoming race. Your magazine is not one to speculate on rumours, is it?” Po fended off the question with a smile.

“Our readers are curious to know more about Ms Kim.”

“I’m sure you have many other questions for her.”

“We’d like to get the story on how you got into this scene, Ms Kim. And how you got this good.”

“A little bit of talent and a lot of hard work,” Taeyeon replied. She put on a smile for good measure and added, “I guess you could call me Ssamyoong’s secret weapon.”

“Ssamyoong’s secret weapon. It has a nice ring to it. Was this planned from the start? To keep you under wraps?”

“It wasn’t the whole plan, but somehow, things worked out this way.”

“You’re leaving us as clueless as before, Ms Kim. Did you get your training at Ssamyoong?”

“I trained with some friends. It was my friend, Sunny, who encouraged me to get a racing license.”

“Do you mean Sunny, the niece of SM’s chairman?”

“Yes, that’s her.”

“How did you get to know her?”

“We went to school together. And she helped me to get a part-time job working shifts at the SM.”

“The two of you sound close.”

“We are.” Taeyeon smiled. The interview had been steered into a safe direction at last.

The rest of the interview went fairly well, in her opinion. Po seemed to think so too, if her grin was any indication. They left the room and Taeyeon was pounced upon by an ecstatic younger sister whose shining eyes was an absolute delight to look into. So while Po gave Uncle Im a report on the interview, Taeyeon chatted with Hayeon, giving her the lowdown on everything that had happened so far.

“I propose a family drink before Taeyeon and Yoona head back to their rooms,” said Uncle Im. “Are we up for it?”

“Yes, yes,” went Hayeon without hesitation and Taeyeon grinned, nodding her assent.

“Alright then, let’s go.”

Uncle Im’s driver knew a good place for drinks that was a short drive away and they settled down at a table for five, looking very much like a family. With drinks and some snacks on the table, they talked about random things that families talked about. Everything from the weather to recent news. Taeyeon was happy to take her mind off the race for a while and actually had a good time, conversing freely, feeling unguarded around them. The conversation flowed well and there were smiles all around the table. Until Yoona cleared her throat and announced she had something to tell them.

All attention was on Yoona and she was not her usual smiling self which got Uncle Im worried. But Taeyeon knew what it was about. Yoona had told her all about her plans during their flight and she had given her blessings.

“This is about Seohyun.”

“Doctor Seo?”

Yoona nodded. “Seohyun.”

Uncle Im nodded. “What about her?”

“We’ve been looking for a good time to do this and we’ve wanted to do this a long time ago, but as it turns out, there never is a good time for it and we don’t want to drag it out any longer.”

“Yoong, what is this about?”

One deep breath later, Yoona looked straight at Uncle Im and said, “Seohyun and I are in a serious relationship. We are together.”

“You and the doctor?”

“I know what you’re thinking right now, Dad. It’s not like that at all. We only started going out after we ended out doctor-patient relationship. Seohyun insisted on waiting.”

“Yoong, how did you even…” Uncle Im shook her head. “All those times you sneaked out. You were out with her, weren’t you.”

“I wasn’t sure about it at first. I wanted to give it a try but I didn’t think you would have allowed me to date my doctor. Much less a female one.”

“You thought I would object and chose to sneak around me. Didn’t you consider the reasons why I would object? Don’t you think I would have valid reasons for objecting if I did?”

Yoona teared up. “I’m sorry. I really, really like her and I didn’t want to lose the chance to find out if she’s the one for me. I just couldn’t be sure and I didn’t feel ready to tell you about it.”

“So you chose this occasion with your new family members around to act as buffers for you?”

Yoona hung her head. “I’m sorry.”

Uncle Im sighed, sounding very much like an old man who’s been given a ton of bricks to carry. “This is not a good time to talk about this but I don’t think I can put this aside right now. You will bring Doctor Seo home and introduce her to us, formally. No more sneaking around like a fox.”

“I will. I’ll bring her home and introduce her. She’s wanted me to do it for a long time now but it’s my fault for being a coward and avoiding this for so long.”

“When did you start to date her?”

“Two months after my final appointment with her. I asked her out during our last appointment but she refused, citing professionalism as her reason so I negotiated a cooling off period. Eight weeks. She made me wait eight weeks before going out to dinner with me. She wanted me to be completely clear of any influence she might have had on me during our sessions. She’s absolutely honourable in her actions, Dad. I’m the rogue in the relationship.”

“And that’s what makes me sad. To think that I’ve raised you to be a forthright person. Someone who is moral and upright. Yet here I am, indebted to the doctor who helped you with your sleeping issues.”

Yoona sniffed. “Well, actually, my sleeping problems only started after I realized I don’t like men romantically. I was affected by it so much that I couldn’t stop thinking about it, wondering why I am the way I am. It was Seohyun who talked to me about it, opened me up. She helped me to deal with my insecurities and fears and that fixed my sleeping problems. And I suppose, in some ways, Seohyun was right. I was always relieved and rejuvenated after talking to her during those sessions and I might have developed certain feelings for her due to that. But the two-month cooling off period she forced me to take, made me sure about my feelings for her. It wasn’t because she was my doctor. We hit it off, right from our first date. We both knew, somehow. But it’s not easy for her either. She is the only child and she bears the burden of giving her parents the grandchildren that they want so much. It took her a long time to come clean with her parents too.”

“When did she tell them?”

“Last week.” Yoona sighed. “I didn’t want to distract you from work and this race was coming up so I thought this evening would be a better choice.”

“Taeyeon’s race is tomorrow. This is going to affect her.”

“Taeyeon has known about Seohyun and me from the start.”

It was Taeyeon’s turn to cast her eyes down to the napkin in front of her.

“I see.”

“Please don’t blame her. It’s not her right to tell you about it.”

“I’m not about to blame her. In fact, I should thank you, Taeyeon, for helping my daughter with the burden of the secret. At least, she has someone to share her secrets with.”

“Dad, I’m really sorry.”

“That’s enough, Yoong. We’ll talk about this after you bring Doctor Seo home. We’ll have a good talk then. But for now, we need to clear our minds and focus on the race. We’re all behind you, Taeyeon. We’ll be cheering you on tomorrow.”

“Sorry, Taeyeon. My timing sucks but I just can’t hold it in anymore.”

Taeyeon nodded. “I know what it feels like. Don’t apologize. We’re sisters, right? This is what sisters are for.”

“This is what family is for,” added Uncle Im, wearing a smile. “We’re a family and we stick together.”

Taeyeon didn’t get to see Tiffany or kiss her goodnight. She had to settle for an exchange of voice messages and a verbal goodnight before settling in for the night. So it was a grumpier Taeyeon who woke up the next morning, rolling over only to miss the warmth that Tiffany brought to bed. Damn it. She was turning into such a pathetic sap who craved her lover way too much. Fuck it. There was nothing wrong with being a sap. She’d be a fucking sap if she wanted to. She could be a sap and still be cool. Fuck yes, she could.

Breakfast was made by Yoona, thank heavens. She ruffled her sister’s hair, affection pouring out from every pore, as she inhaled the mouth-watering aroma of chicken soup wafting from the kitchen. This was way better than the plain toast and cereal she’d been served the past few days. And the source of the ingredients for the wonderful soup?

Seohyun, who had arrived early morning and was tasked by Yoona to pick up the necessary groceries.

“Seohyun, you couldn’t have come at a better time with better food. You just saved my life, girl.”

The bright eyed woman simply giggled. “You’re overly dramatic this morning, unnie.”

“You’re gonna have to get used to it if you wanna be part of the family.”

Seohyun’s smile was wide as a mile. “I’ll do that, unnie.”

Taeyeon grinned. Today was going to be a good day after all.

The system track test went smoothly. Her car was good to race. She had made doubly sure to check every inch her car too. Ever since Tiffany’s accident… Taeyeon shook her head as she headed out of the garage. These were not the kind of thoughts she wanted to have today.

Po led her to the changing room and handed her a company polo shirt. “There’s gonna be a photo session for the newspapers and media. Remember to smile, okay?”

“Do I have to. I hate smiling.”

“It’s better if you look friendly and smiling helps.”

“Unnie, just think of Tiffany and smile,” Yoona quipped.

“Yoona…” Taeyeon growled in warning.

Po giggled. “Yoona’s suggestion is a good one. Doing that will help you to smile more naturally.”

“I’m not gonna think of Tiffany and give the newspapers my Tiffany smile. Only Tiffany gets that smile.”

“It doesn’t have to be Tiffany. Just think of something you like very much. Enough to make you smile.”

“Fine.”

Taeyeon was glad to be done with the fan signing session. It was an hour too long, in her opinion. This was definitely her least favourite part of the job, smiling and saying hi to enthusiastic strangers who seemed way too happy to see her. She was the first to get to the changing room. It was time to get into her all-time favourite outfit for the warmup lap. Warmup. She snorted at the word. She’d been warmed up alright. Stewing, in fact.

“I’m so honoured to be dating Little Miss Popular.”

Tiffany sailed past her with a grin and headed straight for her locker to retrieve her racing suit, leaving Taeyeon standing by the bench with no chance to respond as the other racers streamed into the room. Taeyeon made a mental note to make Tiffany pay back for that little dig. Oh, she was going to pay.

The warmup lap happened without any mishaps and they rolled into their pit stations for one last check. The option to make any final changes was available to them but Taeyeon felt good about the configuration of her car. There was no need to change anything. She drove her car out to the starting grid in good time and moments later, the pit lane was closed. Everyone was locked in on the starting grid. The spectators were watching.

The race was on.

After all the heat, adoring fans and press interviews, Taeyeon was ready for some real action. This was what she was here for. It may not be dangerous and mysterious like the dark night of a street race, but there were top notch racers to beat and something to prove. And this got her heart pumping. Her adrenaline was up, mind, clear. The sound of engines revving, the crowd, the commentator, muted by her helmet. The red lights lighting up one at a time are all she sees. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. They hold for a moment. Then, they disappear.

Go.

Cara of Ashton Martini and Natsushima of Nessen were in front of her but she had to be careful not to give the racers behind her any opportunity to overtake. And that included Tiffany, two positions behind her. She sped down the straight towards the first corner. The track was wide and there were cars all around her, jostling for an advantageous position. Taeyeon focused on maintaining the optimal line leading up to the apex. Every angle counted. Every angle played a part in ensuring efficiency.

They entered the first corner with Natsushima leading the pack. Cara was next and Taeyeon held on to her third position. She could see the colours of Furrari right behind her and assumed Tiffany was right behind. There was no time to consider anything else, however. Another corner followed the first and she got past that, entering the gentle curve leading to a long straight.

Another thing she didn’t like were the rules governing the race. There was no way she could give the other car a nudge, nor could she play dangerous games. As a result, it was relative peace and calm for the first lap. Cara didn’t give her any opportunities to overtake and Taeyeon knew that waiting for one would be fruitless. If she wanted a chance to beat Cara, she’d have to make it happen.

One of the best moments to try something was the double curve at Point 5 and 6. But she had to observe Cara first. Lap 2 went by without any change in positions but she picked up knowledge of Cara’s entry style and that gave her an idea. She tried it out during Lap 3, but her attempt to blast past Cara failed when the racer went head to head with her, refusing to slow down, forcing her to fall back into third again. The next few laps were tight, with no opportunities to make a dash for it but she thought of something new to try during Lap 8.

The curve at Point 5 was to the left, followed by a curve to the right at Point 6. This meant that she could try to lure Cara out by applying pressure on the outer lane, forcing her to close that window as they approached the first curve. She kept as close as she could and waited till the very last second before swerving to the left, risking losing control over her tyres and accelerated as soon as the window opened. That put her on the inside entry to the left curve and she piled on the acceleration as she sped past Cara, leaving the racer no choice but to fall back or risk crashing. The next move was to close the window for Cara on the right curve which she did by slowing at the very last moment, just enough to make the right turn at Point 6.

She let out a whoop of victory as she pulled out of the curve and pelted down the straight, taking care to keep the window closed at the next two corners. Cara was not to be underestimated, however, and Taeyeon focused on being vigilant at all times, unwilling to give up her new position. She managed to hold on to her position for the next few laps but the repetition was starting to get to her. How was she to maintain this for the next seventeen laps? Her focus was beginning to slip and she grew fidgety in her stewing suit. The heat was unforgiving and she was melting in it. Fuck. She’d better not lose to the heat.

Fortunately for her, the weather changed. They hadn’t expected rain to come this early in the day, but in Taeyeon’s opinion, it couldn’t have come at a better time. The call for her to return to the pit came as the drizzle that had started turned into a downpour. Rain fell in big droplets and visibility was affected, as were her dry tyres.

“Pit stop. Wet tyres on.”

“Got it,” Taeyeon replied and prepared to pull into the pit lane. She pulled in after completing Lap 13, just a head of Cara and listened to the voice in her helmet reporting the various statistics as her team pulled a fast one on her car. Apparently, Natsushima had not chosen to make a pit stop and was still on the track, as were Furrari and Hyundae. Within seconds, she was out, rolling back onto the track with wet tyres and fuel loaded. The wet conditions turned the track into a very different one and she had to suss out the optimal way to handle the circuit while holding off Cara.

The Hyundae team had gone with intermediate tyres which turned out to be a good decision even though the weather forecast had not predicted rain at this time of the day. This allowed Tiffany to stay on the track, thus avoiding the jam that she knew would happen as most of the racers had to swap out their tyres. This freed up the pressure she had behind as Landy of McLauren pulled in like most others. But there was still one obstacle in front of her—Furrari’s Miu. They had apparently gone with intermediate tyres as well and did not pull in, which meant Tiffany was still stuck behind the same car for eleven laps now.

She had tried various means to overtake Miu but the racer had thwarted all of her attempts so far. It was time to give it another shot before the rainfall forced her to pull in to swap on wet tyres. It was definitely to her benefit to pull into the pit ahead. Besides, with the rain pelting down, there was no better time to take advantage of the caution that Miu would most definitely take.

Bidding her time, Tiffany looked for opportunities constantly when one finally opened up. It was right after Point 9, a sharp corned to the left that opened up into a gentler right curve at Point 10. They were two-thirds of the way through the circuit and she would have to enter the pit after this. It was now or never. She kept as close as she could as they rounded the sharp corner and in a potentially risky maneuver, she took the line towards the outer lane and slammed on the accelerator, giving her car a burst of speed as she entered the gentler curve. Managing to inch up bumper to bumper, Tiffany pushed into towards the middle of the lane, aggressively forcing Miu to give way to her as they neared the entry point. She won the tussle, claiming the entry position to hit the apex, slowing her car down just in time to make the turn. At this point, she was clear to maintain a high speed, entering the next right corner and pulled away from Miu as they hurtled down the short straight to the last three points of the circuit.

Oh yeah, baby. Tiffany Hwang was in fourth place now. Three more to go.

The rain was making things difficult. Jessica cursed under her breath as visibility and control slipped a notch. She’d gotten her wet tyres swapped and had gotten back onto the circuit but was now stuck behind a slower car. And starting in twelfth position wasn’t her idea of ideal. The long break she’d taken due to her post-trauma stress had affected her form more than she had realized and she knew that it wasn’t realistic to expect to be the top six but nothing less than top ten was respectable, in her opinion. With twenty-four racers on the list, she had set the target of top eight for herself prior to coming here and she was determined to achieve it.

Yuri had been wonderful at consoling her after she clocked in a fastest lap that ranked only twelfth.

“You shine when there are more cars for you to overtake. That’s your strength. You’ll get past all of them.”

“I don’t think it’s going to be easy. We’re not talking some regional league or local race. I’ll be up against top form international racers who’ve been training all year long.”

“You know what, it’s what happens on the circuit that matters. Cut yourself some slack. As you said, you are coming from difficult place, so just race. Forget all about statistics and race. It’s your instinct to overtake. You’ll find it in you once the race is on.”

“You have an incredible amount of faith in me.”

Yuri simply grinned and squeezed her shoulder. “It’s not incredible. You’re incredible.”

“You’re biased.”

“So what if I am.”

Jessica looked deep into Yuri’s eyes and smiled for the first time after seeing the qualifier results. “Thanks. For everything.”

Yuri shook her head. “Those aren’t the three words that I want to know the most.”

Jessica giggled. “Which three words do you want to hear? I see you?”

Yuri pouted. “No.”

“I hear you?”

“No, stop trolling.”

“I like you?”

“You’re getting close.”

“I adore you?”

“I love you, damn it.”

Jessica giggled. Yuri always made her feel better somehow.

But right now, Yuri would be watching the race, rooting on for her. She could almost hear Yuri’s voice, praising her for moving up two positions. But two positions wasn’t enough. She had half the race left and she needed to move up another two positions at least. Difficult. But entirely possible.

She took advantage of the first corner coming out of the pit stop to pressure the BMM in front of her into giving way. Taking the optimum entry line, she overtook the BMM car and looked towards the next car in front of her. Samjung had done well with their race cars and she gained on the next car after the long straight between Point 3 and 4, due to the superior acceleration.

Driving with caution, she maintained her aggressiveness and managed to bully the next car into giving way as well, finishing the next two laps with good timings despite the rain. The rain lessened as she completed Lap 20 and visibility improved. Things were looking up.

Frustration was beginning to get to Taeyeon. Natsushima was racing a perfect race so far and had not yielded to the multiple attempts she pulled to apply pressure. How was a racer supposed to beat her? Natsushima must not be human, she thought as they sped past the starting/finishing line for the twenty-second time. With five laps to go, her time was running out. Every corner, every curve had been attempted but thwarted. What did she have left? Damn the rules of the race. Damn the heat that was returning now that the rain had reduced to a drizzle. Damn everything.

On top of all that, the constant pressure from Cara’s presence behind her was a hindrance to her freedom to try more adventurous endeavours. Nothing too risky or she might lose her second spot. Argh.

Lap 23 went by with the three of them in a stalemate and so did Lap 24. Three laps remained now. Time was running out. Fuck.

There was a final gamble she could take. Nessen’s acceleration was a fraction less powerful than hers so she had three more tries to overtake Natsushima down the long straight after the starting/finishing line. She’d been trying but each time she got close enough, the window was closed. She’d tried faking a few lefts and rights but nothing worked. Natsushima had a perfect read on her intentions and was able to cut her off every single time. Yet what was surprising was the fact that Natsushima wasn’t even the top seed from Japan. There was Miko of Sozoki but she was surprisingly far down the rankings in seventh place. So Natsushima was a dark horse, just like her. Only, seemingly better. Better. Had she finally met a racer who was better than her? She had just three more laps left to prove that wasn’t the case.

Flooring the accelerator, Taeyeon allowed her race car to hit its limit. She held it there as they zipped down the long straight and with each passing second, she managed to close the gap between them. She tried to nose her way past Natsushima’s rear wheels but was cut off yet again as the racer moved back in front of her. Fuck. This was Lap 25 and her chances were running out. The option to swerve sharp to the right then left came with the risk of losing control of her race car, especially with the wet track but she decided she had nothing to lose. The three of them were in a race of their own, it seemed, with no other race cars nearby so if she lost control, she reckoned it would be down to third for her at worst. So a gamble for third or first was a gamble worth taking. Life was always a gamble anyways.

The best time to pull this stunt would be the last lap. Natsushima would be on her highest level of caution then and would not expect any high risk maneuvers then. So as they entered the final lap and flew down the last long straight, Taeyeon made sure she was as close as possible before making a move to the right. Natsushima reacted quickly to block half of the window so Taeyeon pulled even more to the right. Much to her surprise, Natushima didn’t follow, opting to maintain her optimal line so Taeyeon managed to pull up to her right for the very first time.

Her race car pushed its nose forward, pulling up level with Natsushima’s rear wheels, then inched up some more so that Taeyeon was only down half a car length. But the straight was ending soon and she caught sight of Cara attempting to sneak to the left. Natushima cut to the left just then, and she found herself caught between the two racers, jostling for the best line to enter the final corner of the final lap.

Pulling back into the middle of the track, she brushed the top of Cara’s race car and they wobbled dangerously, allowing Natsushima to pull ahead and claim the optimal entry to, hitting the apex nicely.

“Fuck!” Taeyeon growled in frustration. She had come so close!

“Stay calm, Taeyeon. You’re good in second. Bring it in.”

Taeyeon held her temper down and focused on the rest of the straight, pulling in second after Natsushima, the loss turning her lips down into an angry pout. She’d just lost to another dark horse who had come out of nowhere. Fuck.

31 thoughts on “Losing to the Heat 70

  1. Whoo! That was intense! TaeYeon? 2nd place? That racer from japan must be that good. What about the champion’s request? I can imagine TaeYeon behind the wheel and everything was in slow motion tyring to overtake. Wow! But it’s a good start. She’ll get another chance. I almost forgot about Yoona. Oh, too much drama but it’s a good thing she gained courage to say it. This story is damn good!!

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