Chapter 49: Chapter 49
Translated by: ShawnSuh
Edited by: SootyOwl
Sitting by the window in his hotel room, Soo Hyun Kim, the miscellaneous type representing the Northern Branch, stared blankly at the city at night. Looking down at the stump of his arm, he was reminded of the fact that he no longer had a right arm. His protective shield hadn’t been able to protect him from the champion’s deadly blow, leading to the loss of his limb. Reliving the vivid memory of his protective shield shattering into pieces right before his eyes, Soo Hyun scoffed almost like a sigh. At that moment, the door opened, and a man in a black robe armed with a podao sword came into the room. Looking at him, Soo Hyun smacked his lips and asked, “So, did the higher-ups know anything about this new miscellaneous-type individual?”
When the man in the black robe responded with a brief nod, Soo Hyun chuckled and took a drag off his cigarette.
“Talk about surprise, am I right? Hell, I don’t even know what to make of this situation.”
Instead of a response, the man in the black robe came up to Soo Hyun and stared intently at him with cold, cruel eyes.
“I have a message.”
“‘You’ve served us well.’”
At that moment, darkness engulfed the room, and the surroundings started to contort as the sword of the man in the black robe came down on the northern representative. Blood gushed out of Soo Hyun like a fountain, splattering all over the room, soaking the wallpaper and the floor. Covered in the blood of his victim, the man in the black robe treaded past the pool of blood and left the room unhurriedly.
“The northern representative was found dead in his hotel room, and the southern representative is assumed to have fallen from the hospital’s rooftop. Though, our analysis shows that he was already dead when he fell.”
Hearing the mind-boggling information being delivered by the Shadow Guild, Ji Yoo pinched the bridge of her nose.
“Who are you working for?” she asked herself wearily.
“That is all. You will receive the bill after the weekend.”
With that, the call came to an abrupt end, and Ji Yoo clenched her teeth and eyes. All four of the regional branches remained headless, and it was only a matter of time before the world found out about Korea’s vulnerable state.
“Wait… Why were the eastern and western representatives assassinated in the middle of their treatment?”
Something wasn’t adding up. While two of the four had been killed after their treatment, the remaining two had been assassinated during their treatment.
‘This makes no sense. If somebody was trying to assassinate them, then they would’ve killed all four of them before they were admitted to the hospital… Unless, there’s a fourth-party involved?’
Swarmed with thoughts, Ji Yoo let out a long sigh and leaned back against her chair.
“Sigh, the hell with it…” she murmured, groaning, her forehead hotter than ever.
In a wheelchair, a man stared at the Han River. Soon, a black car approached while flashing its headlights. As it came to a stop, a man in a black robe came out of the car.
“Welcome back,” the man in wheelchair said with a welcoming smile. At which point, the man in the black robe walked up to the man in a wheelchair, stood next to him and stared out into the river. He asked, “Min Sung Kang. What are you gonna do about him?”
Thinking of the individual the man in the black robe was referring to, the man in the wheelchair smiled bitterly and replied, “We don’t know much about him. For now, we keep our eyes on him.”
Hearing that, the man in the black robe nodded.
There was something incredibly addicting about falling asleep with a full stomach. Similarly, there was something just as magical about a bowl of cold udon in the middle of a summer night. Going to bed after such a satisfying meal was a tremendous blessing.
Although going to bed with a full stomach often meant waking up feeling sluggish in the morning, it was hardly a big deal for the champion. After all, all he had to do was let the energy diffuse through his body. After that, his circulation returned to its maximum efficiency in no time. Getting out of bed, Min Sung made his way to the living room, stretching on the way. Soon, he was greeted by Bowl, who was in the middle of wiping the table.
“Good morning, master,” the doll said, bowing politely. Nodding briefly in response, Min Sung made his way into the kitchen. Then, just as he was about to open the refrigerator door for a drink of water, he stopped in his tracks as a certain machine came into view.
“Is this a coffee machine?”
Standing in front of the thirty-two-million-won coffee machine, the champion studied the manual. After which, he decided to try his hand at making his own coffee. Being extremely high-end, the machine was capable of controlling the coffee to water ratio to perfection. Because of that, it didn’t take a professional barista to brew a perfect cup of coffee.
With a cup ready in his hand, Min Sung opened the glass door and went out to the front yard. Greeted by the warm Sun and a clear blue sky, the champion savored the nature around him, listening to the cicadas buzzing about. Then, sitting on a chair, he drank his coffee. As the hot liquid flowed into his mouth, he let out, “Ah… this is nice,” and looked up at the sky. Although he had been back to Earth for a while, it still felt surreal. Savoring his warm cup of fresh coffee, he counted his blessings. At that moment, the doorbell rang and broke the silence.
“Who is it at this hour?” he murmured, furrowing his brow. Putting the coffee on the table, he made his way toward the front door.
A strikingly beautiful woman appeared through the crack of the door. Furrowing his brow, Min Sung asked, “Do I know you?”
“Ji Yoo Kim? We ended up fishing together, remember? I even shared my bait with you.”
“I had some questions to ask you. Mind if I come in?”
“I do mind.”
Hearing that, Ji Yoo raised the plastic bag in her hand, which read ‘Chungmu Gimbap.’
“I thought it would be rude of me to show up at your door empty-handed.”
Upon seeing the bag of gimbap, Min Sung’s mouth started to water. Despite having had a bowl of udon the night before, the temptation of the Chungmu-style gimbap was still strong. Eventually, Min Sung opened the door wide, and while throwing him a beautiful smile, she walked inside. Then, she came across Bowl, who was still busy cleaning the house.
“Aww! What is that? Is it alive!? Awww! It’s adorable!”
Paying no attention to her, Min Sung took the gimbap, the seasoned squid, the radish kimchi and a bowl of soybean paste soup out of the plastic bag. Ji Yoo observed the champion as he set the food.
Buried in her bosom, Bowl let out a strange chuckle, “Hehe. Hehe.”
When Min Sung opened the container with the gimbap in it, a savory, irresistible fragrance rushed into his nose. At which point, without hesitation, he picked up a piece of gimbap and seasoned squid with a toothpick and brought them up to his. The squid was tender, but it also had a pleasant snap to it, not to mention the wave of ocean flavor that filled his mouth.
‘… This… is amazing!’
Although he had just gotten out of bed, the gimbap combined with the perfectly seasoned squid was too delicious for him to stop after his first piece.
Picking up the bowl of soup, Min Sung poured the rich, savory broth and the tender pieces of radish greens into his mouth. Then, just as he was about to reach for another piece of gimbap, he looked at Ji Yoo, who smiled pleasantly and said, “I’ve already eaten. Eat up.”
‘You might have shown up at my door without telling me ahead of time, but I’ll make an exception this one time. We’ll call it even,’ Min Sung thought as he put another piece of gimbap into his mouth. Two became three; and three became four. Yet, the dish didn’t get old to him. In fact, it felt as though his stomach wanted more of it.
‘I can’t stop eating these,’ Min Sung told himself as he put yet another piece of the bite-sized gimbap into his mouth. The rice was neither too sticky nor too dry, and the seaweed wrapped around the rice added a nice popping sensation when he sank his teeth into the concoction. In addition, the seasoned squid, which was quite spicy, was incredibly addictive. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before he was down to the last piece of gimbap.
Looking down at the last remaining piece of gimbap with lingering attachment, Min Sung created one last concoction with a piece of seasoned squid, some fish cake and vegetables and brought that up to his mouth. After following up with what was left of the soup, Min Sung sank into his couch, deeply satisfied. Then, he looked toward Ji Yoo, who was tickling Bowl like a child playing with a doll.
“Ehehe! Ehe!” Bowl let out. At which point, Min Sung, glaring piercingly at her, said, “What did you want to know?”
“What happened between you and the branch representatives?” Ji Yoo asked with a pleasant smile on her face.
“The branch representatives?”
“On the bridge.”
“Oh, that,” Min Sung dragged on. Furrowing his brow, he asked, “Do I have to talk about it?”
“Unfortunately, yes. It’s an urgent matter. Those representatives were some of the most valuable assets of this country.”
“I’m afraid I can’t say the same. They got in my way.”
“They got in your way? Where were you going?” Ji Yoo asked, tilting her head in confusion. The champion replied, “A restaurant.” At that point, a flabbergasted look appeared on Ji Yoo’s face.
“OK… so, you needed Ho Sung Lee in order to go to a restaurant, and those four men got in your way, so you proceeded to…”
“I thought it was a valid reason.”
“You killed them!?”
“Last time I checked, they didn’t look like they were dying.”
“So, were you meeting those four men for the first time when you crossed paths with them on the bridge? You’ve never met them before?” Ji Yoo asked, and Min Sung nodded. Looking down, Ji Yoo immersed herself in thought. Then, looking toward the champion, she asked, “I trust that you’re not lying to me?”
“Now, why would I bother to do that?”
“Haha. You’re a very interesting man. I’m surprised that you still haven’t fallen for me,” she said with a vein popping out of her temple slightly.
“Well, if you got all the information you needed, you may leave,” Min Sung said as he rose from the couch. Hearing that, Ji Yoo scoffed and lay down on the couch.
“What do you think you’re doing?” Min Sung asked with a furrowed brow.
“My head is throbbing, so I’m gonna lie here and rest for a little bit. Hope you don’t mind. Think of it as a small price for your actions.”
“Thanks to you, all four regional branches have lost their leaders overnight. Do you know what that means? It means disturbing the balance and putting every citizen in this country in fear. Need I remind you that you’re at the center of all this? Oh, speaking of which, do you think you can take over one of the four regional branches? I don’t care which.”
Noticing that Min Sung had remained silent, Ji Yoo narrowed her eyes and looked up at him, only to discover that he had disappeared. Dropping her head, Ji Yoo chuckled. Then, Bowl crawled up her leg and lay down on her belly.
“Well…” she let out, rubbing Bowl’s head. Closing her eyes, she murmured wearily, “What do you think I should do, Mr. Kang?”
While Ji Yoo was resting in the living room, Min Sung was preoccupied with looking up blogs and social network accounts of popular restaurants. Although there were practically thousands of them, most of the restaurants often turned out to be overhyped. It was the result of those restaurants hiring people to promote themselves. In the end, it was only through experience that restaurants were able to truly benefit from their customers spreading the word. The restaurants Ho Sung recommended were good examples of that, which made him all the more valuable to the champion.
‘This is why I can’t do this alone,’ Min Sung said to himself, scratching his head. No matter how hard he tried to find a good restaurant, he simply couldn’t overcome his limited knowledge. Even though he had come across one that he had actually liked, that hadn’t happened without wasting a significant amount of his time and without enduring a series of misfortunes. Looking at the monitor, Min Sung nodded as he was reminded of just how valuable Ho Sung was when it came to finding good restaurants. At that moment, just as the champion was about to turn the computer off and leave the room, a certain advertisement pop-up caught his eyes and made him sit back down. The title read: ‘The Seven Best Eats You Have to Try Overseas.’
Waking up to the sound of his phone going off, Ho Sung sat up on his bed, his hair still unkempt, and checked the message.
‘Two direct flight tickets to Germany for the both of us. Look for places known for their sausages. We leave in the afternoon. – Min Sung Kang”
Looking at his phone, Ho Sung’s face hardened, and he let out a deep sigh.
“This guy can’t be serious. Germany!? He makes it sound like we’re going to Itaewon or something! Ugh… The stress!” Ho Sung said, clasping his head and groaning in pain as if hungover.