Life, Once Again! - Chapter 307
Bitna accepted a glass of vodka from Janghae. The emerald-colored vodka glistened in the transparent glass. She swung it sideways and smelled the deep fragrance of alcohol before putting it against her lips.
“You should drink some too, oppa.”
Bitna filled Janghae’s glass.
“Weren’t you going to play golf today?”
They were in a relationship where they had to reserve each other’s time to meet, as a form of respect that is. Also, both of them were busy. They couldn’t meet whenever they wanted to. But today, Janghae told her one-sidedly that he wanted to meet her. Bitna accepted since she was free at that time, but she was curious. Why did this meticulous man suddenly want to meet her?
“It got canceled.”
“Now that makes me disappointed. So you called me just because your appointment got canceled?”
“Then should I leave?”
“Whatever,” saying those words, Bitna fell over on his lap.
Although she had said those words, she was very happy that he came to meet her while she was free. Janghae stroked her hair.
“We should’ve met somewhere else. I mean, you seem hungry.”
“We can’t be like this in other places.”
“Is that so?”
Bitna ate the gr.a.p.es that Janghae fed her. Janghae was the type of person who would immediately voice his opinion out loud if his mind was set on it. The fact that he was keeping quiet meant that he was organizing his thoughts. She didn’t need to urge him to speak.
“It’s very interesting when I think of it as a challenge. It hasn’t been a long time since that last happened,” Janghae spoke after a long while.
“Didn’t you achieve everything you wanted though? Being a senior managing director is a position everyone would be envious of, isn’t it?”
“Still, that’s all I amount to – a senior managing director. I’m also fifty-five this year. I don’t see a way up so it’s about time I switch lanes.”
“You’re fifty-five already, oppa? You’re really old.”
“I have a young-looking face, so it’s okay.”
Bitna stroked Janghae’s face and giggled. When she first met this man, she was very scared of him. He looked like he would shoot lasers from his eyes. Though now, she was able to speak to him warmly.
“Does the company want you to leave?”
“I guess it’s something similar.”
Janghae faintly smiled.
“It’s kinda what I’ve been doing until now, but I’ve been put in charge of something rather vague. There’s a child company that a subsidiary of our corporation made, and I’m planning to work there.”
“Vague? What do you mean vague?”
“It’s distribution work, but I’ll be mostly dealing with people and music. Perhaps celebrities too.”
“What? Music? Celebrities? Haha, that’s so funny. It doesn’t suit you.”
This stiff man and music? Those two didn’t go together at all. Janghae seemed to have found it funny as well. He rarely laughed and he was laughing now.
“So what, you sell albums or the like?”
“I’ll be dealing with web contents and setting up a platform, but I won’t be dealing with any physical media.”
“What the heck is that? That sounds so difficult.”
Bitna shut Janghae up by stuffing a piece of watermelon in his mouth. Janghae quietly ate the watermelon and just stared at her. Just then, the door suddenly swung open and two men entered. There were an uneasy-looking waiter and one little madam behind the two.
“What the heck is this place? Why do you want us to go in here?”
One of the two men entered the room with a disdainful smile on his face. The waiter and the little madam looked at Janghae before bowing their heads.
“Hm, who’s this woman here? Haven’t seen her around here.”
The man hit the waiter’s hand away.
“Just wait. I’m a good man here. I don’t do bad things. It’s just that I saw a madam I haven’t seen around here, so I’m just curious.”
“She’s not a madam but….”
Bitna sighed and stood up to speak in the waiter’s stead.
“Hello? If you entered the wrong room, then just leave quietly.”
“Gee, woman. Look at her mouth. She’s charming.”
The two men giggled. Bitna laughed and walked up to them. She looked at them directly in the eyes and stood there for a while. The two men with bad attitudes suddenly froze stiff.
“What the heck are you doing to your customer?”
“Customer? I don’t need customers like you.”
“Are you f.u.c.k.i.n.g crazy, woman? Get the owner here.”
“She’s right in front of you. Go ahead and speak.”
“I said speak. You’re talking to the owner right now.”
Bitna noticed that the little madam standing behind the two men was very uneasy while looking at Janghae. Were these two brought here by Janghae then? When she didn’t say anything, the two men looked at each other before frowning.
“You’re the owner? What about madam Park?”
“That big unni is the big madam of the store, while I own this building.”
Who the heck are you calling madam – Bitna frowned. At that moment, the senior managing director, the head manager and the big madam appeared. The two men looked at both sides before starting to cough awkwardly.
“Big sis. Who are these two? You know them?” She asked the big madam.
Before the big madam even spoke, someone else replied.
“Manager Lee, Manager Cha.”
The two men became shocked out of their wits when they heard Janghae’s voice.
“S-senior director Hong?”
“So the managers of team 1 and team 3 were out because of work to do, but you two were actually here? You put the little duckling on phone duty, while the assistant manager is at a sauna. That’s a good company right there. Don’t you think?”
“Fellas, I told you, didn’t I? That you should stay quiet until I leave? Why do you give menial work to someone who's about to leave on a good note? The newbie in team 3 of store business doesn’t know my face either. Also, when I asked him where the rest of the team went, that newbie asked me ‘who are you’. Also, he blatantly said that some went to the sauna during work. Haa, that was a week ago. Did you know that?”
“ARE YOU F.U.C.K.I.N.G PROUD OF THAT NOW?”
Janghae picked up some watermelon peels and threw them at the two men. A peel hit one man’s head before falling down on the ground.
The two men lowered their heads.
Janghae heaved a deep sigh before speaking.
“You don’t have to be sorry. Oh, and I want to say this. I was going to play golf with the president and general manager Kim, but I told them that I canceled it because of two certain people. How’s that, interesting, isn’t it? Why don’t you go to work tomorrow and have a look at general manager Kim’s face? It’ll be quite fun.”
The two managers left the room in a fl.u.s.ter when Hong Janghae told them to f.u.c.k off. The little madam told the waiter to call the parking boy.
“Big unni, are those two regulars?”
“No, they’re just casuals. You don’t need to worry about them.”
“Rather than that, president, can I talk to you about the band payment and the prepaid salary for the girls?”
“Talk to the senior director for that. I just manage a couple of our aces for fun, so I don’t know that stuff in detail.”
“Okay, sorry for disturbing you. Please rest.”
The waiter quickly mopped the floor before leaving.
Bitna approached Janghae who was resting his face on his hand with a tired face.
“I was wondering why you wanted to meet me here, so this was the reason. I knew you aren’t the kind of man who’d look for me for no reason. Also, don’t be so angry. It’s not good for your body.”
“Fuu, those idiots cause me a headache.”
“This won’t do. Get up. You look gloomy, and I think you need to eat.”
Bitna pulled Janghae up. Janghae followed her lead and stood up unwillingly.
“How was my restaurant that we went to last time? Wasn’t the steak decent?”
“You don’t own one or two stores though.”
“I only have one steak restaurant though.”
Bitna hooked arms with Janghae and left the room. The parking boy, who managed the cars that came to the store, immediately brought Janghae’s car.
Bitna put Janghae into the passenger seat before she sat on the driver’s seat. Janghae leaned back in the chair and closed his eyes.
“How’s it going with your wife these days? You still living separately?”
“We’re always living apart.”
“Then why don’t you just get divorced instead?”
“I need her for class reunions and the like. Women like her shine on those kinds of occasions. We just call each other when we need to. Well, it’s not a bad relationship. I think of her as a good business partner.”
“A good business partner, huh. I guess you and I are like that as well?”
“Want to be in a more emotional relationship?”
“No, I like it this way too. You get fed up if you get too close to people.”
“I wholly agree with you on that matter.”
Bitna smiled when Janghae said those words. It wasn’t that she didn’t fantasize marrying Janghae. However, problems would obviously occur if she married him, so it was better to maintain the current relationship. Marriage was something that only women who needed rescue from work life needed, and there was no need to be so focused on marriage if one had the financial leeway. This was why people with multiple choices had it good. Above all, marrying a man with two kids under him was just a no-go in her mind as well.
After arriving at the restaurant she owned, Bitna left the car to a store employee before entering the building. She went to the table on the second floor that was always reserved for her and ordered a course menu.
“How long are you gonna keep up the people trade business?”
“Until it no longer makes money, I guess? I mean tenpro is doing quite well these days, aren’t they? If I bring some other store’s big madam, they have their bands and boys and everything, so I don’t need to put in any effort either. Also, being in charge of some of them is quite fun too. But for restaurants like this one, there’s no room for me to interfere. I mean, they pay me for rent, and that’s about it. But for those stores, should I say that it feels alive? I mean, it’s good as a hobby if I don’t cross the dirty line. I also get to feel what problems come with management.”
“Geez, you’re a peculiar woman.”
“Jewelry shop, hair stylist shop, restaurant, bars, officetels… I’ll try my hand at everything until I find the thing I like.”
“You have so much money and you want more?”
“What good is standing around doing nothing? Do you know why people become ahjummas? It’s because all they do is look after their kids at home, doing nothing. People need to move around.”
Janghae ate a piece of steak that Bitna cut for him. Playing around with younger people in their twenties was fun, but not thrilling. However, spending time with Janghae, who was in front of her, was thrilling. The profound eyes and the rational gaze was something that young people could never have. Then there are the occasions where he showed his weak side. He was a man she wanted to keep watching for a long time.
“Are your boys doing well? I think you told me that your older one got back at you.”
“He’s grown up already, bearing his fangs at his own father.”
Janghae spoke with a sharp gaze. Bitna felt warmth rushing into the part between her thighs when she saw the scary eyes of his. She grinned and took her foot out of her heels and pushed down on the part between Janghae’s thighs. Janghae continued eating as though nothing had happened.
“How about your second son?”
“I thought he was becoming an obedient dog, but the first son just took him. Well, it doesn’t matter. I’m not interested in broken things.”
“How heartless. But aren’t you happy that your first son became successful?”
“Happy? No way. His success has got nothing to do with my success, so why would I be?”
“What a petty man.”
Bitna sipped on some red wine.
“Oh, reminds me. I have something to ask you, oppa.”
“What is it?”
“Is a former superintendent prosecutor amazing for a lawyer? What the heck is a superintendent prosecutor? Is it someone great?”
“Those people answer directly to the one and only Prosecutor General, so it’s very high. If he happens to be from Seoul’s high prosecutor’s office, then large-scale law firms will pay huge money to hire him.”
“Hmm, so that’s how it works.”
“You really are clueless when it comes to this stuff.”
“I don’t need to know, do I? I mean, I’m a person who’s fine without the law. But hm, he actually turned out to be someone amazing.”
“Nah, I got into a quarrel. But wait, why is someone like that driving a shit car? It’s confusing.”
“Maybe he’s a clean lawyer.”
“Are you serious?”
Janghae shrugged his shoulders.
“So it’s not just attorneys, judges and prosecutors. What the heck? People dealing with the law have hierarchies too?”
“They exist everywhere.”
“I don’t have one though.”
Bitna smiled as she spoke. Just then, a waitress slipped and hit her glass. The round wine glass tilted before returning to its original position. Bitna looked down at her shirt. There was a smudge of red on a shirt that she received as a gift.
“I’m very sorry, customer.”
The waitress panicked and took out a napkin. Bitna shook her head and grabbed the waitress’ hand that was approaching her.
“Move your hand away from me.”
“I think you need to leave this place right now.”
“You didn’t hear me? I said leave. You just need to get changed and leave. I’ll have your salary sent to your bank account. Of course, that’s after taking some off for cleaning my clothes. If it were some other clothes, I would’ve just bought a new one, but I have to get this washed.”
“Uhm, what do you….”
“Do you not know who I am? Oh, so that’s it. That’s all the more reason for you to leave.”
Bitna clicked her fingers and called an employee that knew her face. Seeing the new waiter’s face turn deathly pale, she felt better. She told the waitress, who kept apologizing, to leave. She didn’t need girls like her in her store.
“Now I understand how you feel. How can they not know my face?” Bitna smiled as she spoke.
Janghae just sipped some wine.
“Oppa, this place is no good. Let’s leave.”
“That’s what’s charming about me. Also, let’s get you a suit. I found a good place. They have decent ones for 8 million won. Let’s go.”
Bitna stood up with Janghae. When they went to the counter on the first floor, she saw the waitress with a dazed expression.
“You haven’t left yet? What, you want to eat here?”
“I’m sorry. It was all my fault. I will not make such a mistake again, so please forgive me this once,” the waitress took a deep bow as she spoke.
Bitna just snorted back at her.
“Excuse me, you’re no longer an employee, so I’ll be polite here. Do you know why I pay two million won a month to the employees here? It’s because this place is supposed to be a premium restaurant. People that come here have to feel like they’ve become nobles. To do that, I can’t have mistakes on my premises, okay? I’m not paying you two million won a month just to carry around food. I’m paying people two million to sell service, and you obviously don’t fit the criteria. I thought you were educated on this.”
“I’m very sorry.”
“If apologies could solve everything, why would there be problems in the first place? Just take your leave now. Manager, get a new waiter.”
Bitna scanned the woman before leaving the store. She got in the car as she spoke.
“I despise people who try to take shortcuts the most. They want other people’s money but don’t put in any effort for it.”
“Who’s the one that said getting angry is not good for the body?”
“Tch, fine. I won’t get angry.”
Bitna smiled as she stepped on the accelerator pedal.
* * *
Maru blinked several times as he looked at the pitch-black building in front of him. It screamed expensive with just the name of the restaurant, ‘H House’, written in calligraphy. He was also surprised when he found out that the entire building was just dedicated to the restaurant. Even the carpet at the entrance had an unbelievably smooth texture to it.
“Let me guide you.”
They were led to the 2nd floor as though there was a reservation. After sitting down on the seat, he asked lawyer Park.
“You had an appointment with someone else? I mean, from how it was reserved….”
“I told you that I was planning to come with my daughter. But I can’t help it when she prefers her friends over me. It’s hard to get a reservation at this restaurant so it’s a pity to let it go to waste. That’s why I brought you.”
“You should’ve brought your wife then.”
“She’s in Japan right now. She went traveling with her old classmates. My eldest daughter went to Europe. I’m a lonely dad.”
Maru nodded his head as he thought that rich people’s households had some amazing circ.u.mstances.
 Read translator’s thoughts for details.
 Used to refer to the oldest female member or the female member with the highest position in the group.
 Surprisingly, it can be found when you look it up in English as well. Tenpro(a.k.a ‘ten percent’), is a place where rich people go to spend their money to buy service from ladies. Fun fact, it’s called ‘ten percent’ because the managers of such ‘ladies’ only get ten percent of the cut. The 90% goes to the ladies themselves.
 A Korean-made English word. Combines the words ‘office’ and ‘hotel’ together. It’s basically an office and residence in one. Wikipedia for more details.