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home, we were too tired to even talk. We'd had to ask a different question according to each applicant's personality and responses, so we could not use the routine we had prepared on everyone, and we found it all incredibly tiring. Our ideas seemed to be drying up, and most importantly, the whole thing wasn't fun any more. It seemed strange that we were tired of it all after only twenty interviews. We sat in the back of the bus and looked out the window. "There's no such thing as easy work, right?" M said, still looking at the world going by the window. The question didn't seem to be directed at me. "Maybe we should start from square one," I said. "I don't think we were cut out for this." I was looking out the window, too. We were both watching the same scenery out there. "Square one? You mean go back to when we were the ones getting interviewed? That was fun too, but I think we're better off now." "No, I mean before that." "You mean we should go back to college." "Even further back." M turned to face me with a silly grin. "You're not saying we should make a suicide pact, are you? Die together, be re-incarnated and meet up again?" "No." "Now that I think about it. I can't remember when it all started. We must've taken some fork in the road, right?" "What was your dream?" "My dream? Why are you bringing up dreams all of a sudden? Don't be corny." M turned to face the window. He said nothing more. But I could tell he wasn't looking at the scenery; he was trying to remember what his dream had been. He had said at one point that he wanted to be a landscape architect. At other times he'd wanted to be a professional traveler, or a director of a zoo. I did not know which, if any of these, was M's dream M opened the bus window wide. The wind rushed in past M to reach me. M stuck his head half-way out the window. We didn't speak. The moment I caught a glimpse of M's profile it occurred to me that this might be the last time I would be riding the bus with him like this. We'd boarded the bus, sat there blankly and exchanged only a few brief words, but in that time M and I seemed to have passed through something. I guess you

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[korean short stories]kim junghyuk, the glass shield  
[korean short stories]kim junghyuk, the glass shield  
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