The winner of the SVS Music Awards Rookie of the Year award was KK.
Once Do Wook got up from his seat and started heading towards the stage, the other members, who had been in a daze, came to their senses and started to get up.
The cheering for KK was so loud it was deafening.
The award assistants came up and handed Sul Lae Im the trophy. Sul Lae Im handed over the trophy to Jung Yoon Ki, who was standing in front of her.
Jung Yoon Ki held the trophy tight with trembling hands. Jung Yoon Ki’s palms were as sweaty as, no even more sweaty than, the first time they got first place.
It was also Sul Lae Im who was handing them their first first place trophy. When her eyes met the KK members’, Sul Lae Im laughed slightly.
Sul Lae Im, who had finished presenting the award, went off stage and Jung Yoon Ki stood in front of the microphone stand.
Jung Yoon Ki wasn’t able to start talking right away and let out a sigh first.
The KK members, who were standing in one line on both sides next to Jung Yoon Ki, were all deeply moved.
Rookie of the Year award. When they had been nominated for it, there had been a part of them that had felt they were sure to win based on their popularity.
However, there is no ‘sure thing’ in life.
On the internet, there had been articles prematurely released that had compared the Rookie of the Year nominees M2M and KK. The articles, which had been released when the Rookie of the Year nominees had been announced and KK had been behind in votes, had all been written from M2M’s perspective.
Of course, although it was Ara Entertainment who had released those articles, the KK members had also wavered a bit when they had seen articles like that.
Among the factors that could predict the results, the only visible indicator was the voting poll. Back when they had constantly been behind on the polls, they had thought that they might not win the Rookie of the Year award.
“Don’t set your expectations too high, and don’t be disappointed.”
It was something Jung Yoon Ki had often said to Suk Ji Hoon and Ahn Hyung Seo, who would say just being nominated was an honor and that they didn’t care, but would vote every night on their personal accounts.
At that time, Jung Yoon Ki had thought that they really might not win the Rookie of the Year award.
However, as KK started rising in the polls again and became the model for Yoo Sung Electronics, the articles changed their tune, saying that KK was definitely this year’s top rookie. It was true that Jung Yoon Ki, who was only human, started hoping again when he saw those articles.
For the most part, that was how the members felt too.
Feeling like they could win but also like they might not, yet really really wanting to win…
Considering how hard the members had worked, that was an inevitable desire.
From the day the nominees had been announced until the day of the award ceremony today, even though there had been differences in mentality, they had all been ridden with anxiety.
The audience area visible from the stage was sparkling blue. Do Wook blankly looked at those cheering lights.
A very weird feeling, neither happiness nor sadness, passed over him. It was odd. It was as if he could feel the passage of time.
Feeling as if he had overcome some hurdle, Do Wook felt burdened about the fact that he was standing on stage right now.
‘This second life…it’s such a weird feeling.’
As they looked at the audience after receiving the Rookie of the Year award, the members felt their struggles before debuting, their worries and uneasiness after debuting, and their anxieties until today all wash away.
“Thank you very much. First, to Key Ring who made it possible for us to get the Rookie of the Year award, I love you.”
When Jung Yoon Ki said the nickname of the fandom, the cheering erupted again briefly then died down.
“I’m also so thankful to the members who have been working so hard together from our trainee days until now…”
As he spoke, Jung Yoon Ki looked at the members next to him. On the VCR screen, you could see Ahn Hyung Seo’s eyes tearing up. The other members’ expressions, just as Jung Yoon Ki’s expression as he spoke, were no different.
Everyone’s expressions were a little distorted from trying to hold back their tears from welling up due to their intense happiness.
“…To the people who have stood by us and taken care of us: Baek Ho, Ra Hee, the coordinators, Lucas, Yoon Tae, and PD Brave Only Child who gave us a great song. Thank you very very much…HIT Entertainment Team Leader Shim Joon, Team Leader Im Sung Ahn, Team Leader Jo Anna, Director Kwon Heung Jo, Vice President, President, thank you for guiding us like this.”
While Jung Yoon Ki was holding back his tears, Kim Won, who was standing to his left, yelled,
“Key Ring! Thank you so much! I love you all!”
Jung Yoon Ki formally passed off the microphone to Ahn Hyung Seo, who was standing to his right.
Ahn Hyung Seo repeated the sound as if he were doing a mic test. The audience cheered on Ahn Hyung Seo, saying “Don’t cry! Don’t cry!”
“I’m also so grateful to Key Ring. When we debuted, I didn’t even dream of winning Rookie of the Year award like this…ssniff…It’s all thanks to the members. I also want to thank the members’ parents who gave birth to them. Uh, mom, dad, I love you!”
The topic of parents became a trigger and the members who were trying hard to hold back tears started to tear up.
Do Wook was also reminded of his own parents.
Now Do Wook had four parents that came to mind. Kim Bo Myung’s parents and Kang Do Wook’s parents. As long as Bo Myung’s spirit was in Do Wook’s body, he considered them all parents.
They were given the opportunity to give acceptance speeches until Do Wook’s turn.
Do Wook moved slowly, one step at a time, until he was in front of the microphone. The camera zoomed in on Do Wook.
Do Wook’s black pupils were like a lake.
“Thank you everyone.”
It was at that moment. There was a ripple in the lake. A tear trickled down from Do Wook’s eye.
They already happened to be zoomed in on his face so even the tear mark was clearly broadcasted across the country through the screen.
When they saw Do Wook, who had always been so strong, cry, not only the fans but also the members were shaken. There was a mix of shouts and inexplicable silence.
The future was changing.
The MCs reinstated order on the stage by continuing with their remarks.
As soon as they got off the stage, KK headed towards the waiting room before they had a chance to get emotional. The performance after the next one was KK’s performance.
When they went back to the waiting room, Manager Oh Baek Ho and the staff cheered while they applauded.
The members thanked the staff who welcomed them. Their exchanges were brief.
“For now let’s quickly get changed and get ready for the performance!”
At Oh Baek Ho’s words, the waiting room became busier.
M2M was currently performing on stage. The next performance was KK.
The members looked clean again after getting their makeup touched up with no hint left of them crying.
“Let’s show them.”
Do Wook, who had been quietly getting ready, said to the members. The members understood completely what Do Wook meant and nodded their heads as they exchanged looks.
Whether it was a reward or something else, they would show it through their performance. That was the KK members’ unified thought and the group’s values.
-What am I watching right now?
-They practiced a lot~ They definitely deserve to win Rookie of the Year!~~
-I have Do Wook’s crying face ingrained in my brain…
-My heart almost exploded
-Are they doing somersaults in mid-air as a group right now? Really???
-Hurrr, that’s Park Tae Hyung?
-Is something happening…?
The live online comment section for the Music Awards was already on fire, but exploded once KK’s performance started. The comments continued to pop up at a fast speed.
The aftermath of Do Wook crying during the acceptance speech had not disappeared.
The ‘Sorry but I love you + Very Sorry Remix ver.’ performance that KK had prepared had choreography as elaborate as a non-live performance.
Its highlight was a group somersault in mid-air during the bridge, before transitioning from ‘Sorry but I Love You’ to ‘Very Sorry’.
The members lightly jumped simultaneously and did a flip. Cheers exploded from the audience section over the nimble movements. The reactions from the participating singers sitting in the waiting area were also outstanding.
While Park Tae Hyung was doing a quick three-spin turn without reservation, the members got into formation. The song moved on to ‘Very Sorry’ during that time.
When the chorus repeated with an addictive melody, the people onsite sang along to ‘Very Sorry’ as if they had become one.
The members moved their bodies, enjoying the moment.
Before they knew it, a screenshot of the close-up of Do Wook crying was posted on the portal site main page with the caption < KK, Rookie of the Year Award Winner >.
And the real-time searches were plastered with KK-related words like KK, Kang Do Wook, Park Tae Hyung etc.
KK’s happiness didn’t end there. KK won both the Performance award and the K-POP STAR award, earning the Triple Crown despite being rookies.
When they won the Performance award, Park Tae Hyung and Suk Ji Hoon, the youngest, gave the acceptance speech. When they received the K-POP STAR award, Kim Won went up and gave the acceptance speech he prepared in English, Japanese, and Chinese fluently.
At the end of the award ceremony, the tree trophies were on the KK table in the waiting area.
The winner of the grand prize that evening was Sa Bang Shin Hwa, as everyone expected. True to their title, SBSH, who had almost 1,000,000 in album sales, demonstrated their dignity as the top idol star.
M2M tied with KK for the K-POP STAR award, and received the ‘Top Person’ award given by the city of Goyang, which got them the Double Crown, but it was hard for them to forget the impression of losing to KK.
After the award ceremony was over, KK headed to a restaurant near the company for an after party as well as a company dinner.
KK’s Rookie of the Year award was a big reason to celebrate for the whole company. Therefore, the HIT Entertainment Vice President and even the President were expected to personally attend today’s outing, although they would be leaving after saying some words of encouragement.
The members were more excited about being able to eat as much meat as they wanted and getting at least tomorrow off than they were about the President and Vice President coming.
On the way to the company dinner location, their excitement about it was brief and some of the members were out like a light.
It was natural for them to be exhausted since they did such an intense performance over three times including rehearsal.
However, even though they slept like a log, Jung Yoon Ki and Park Tae Hyung held the trophies close to their chest. Kim Won was even snoring.
“I guess they were really tired.”
Suk Ji Hoon initiated a conversation with Do Wook, who was sitting next to him and looking out the window.
“I guess so…”
Do Wook smiled faintly as he looked at the members.
“I don’t know if they’ll be able to eat properly right after waking up.”
“If you say it’s meat they’ll wake up right away and eat!”
Ahn Hyung Seo answered energetically to Oh Baek Ho’s slight concern.
Ahn Hyung Seo was sitting in the passenger seat and was writing a post for the fan café. The KK fan café was celebrating. The fans had worked harder than anyone else when they voted online.
“Anyways, the President has prepared a big gift.”
“A gift? What is it, what is it?!”
Ahn Hyung Seo took Oh Baek Ho’s bait. Oh Baek Ho smiled.
The KK members didn’t learn what the gift was until they arrived at the location of the company dinner.
It was moving dormitories. KK was moving to a dormitory that’s much bigger in square feet than their current place.
While they were carrying out their packed award ceremony schedule, the new year arrived.
With their three rookie awards in total, KK confidently took over the position of last year’s top rookie. Do Wook especially got a lot of attention for crying during his acceptance speech at the SVS Music Awards.
The genuine tear shed by Do Wook, who was as handsome as a well-carved sculpture, had moved people’s hearts.
With the thought ‘I want to be a roll of tissue to wipe away Do Wook’s tears’, fans of Do Wook, who called themselves ‘Do Wook’s Tissue Roll’ were increasing exponentially even during their inactive period for New Year.
In the meantime, a gym in Jamsil was turned into the location for a special entertainment program for Lunar New Year.
In the gym were many up-and-coming idol groups and solo singers with name tags on, participating regardless of gender.
Also, many fans of those idols had been waiting since dawn to cheer for each team
Do Wook was doing warm-up exercises and getting ready for the long jump.