Life, Once Again! - Chapter 897
“The world sure has gotten good. Women and children can raise their voices. What a twisted world we live in. They’re gravely mistaken. If it was before, she wouldn’t have dared to make any noise. Little Hong. Am I too old-fashioned?”
“Not at all, chairman. Actress Lee is just someone who does not know her position.”
“And yet, such a person came to my study, briefed me about her abilities, and even tried to persuade me while talking about all sorts of things. I wonder how I should describe that?”
“I was insufficient in my handling of her. I’m very sorry, chairman.”
“No. Little Hong, you did well. You handled it too well that her eyes flipped. Next time, don’t take away every last dreg from her hands. There’s that famous idiom too: A cornered rat will bite a cat.”
The chairman gave him a book. It was a hardcover wrapped in velvet. He dusted the dust off it with a brush before inserting it in its place. After cleaning and putting away about twenty books, the chairman spoke again,
“How is the woman in Japan?”
“She’s quick to calculate. She also knows just enough greed.”
“Not a woman who would reach out for the food she shouldn’t eat?”
“She’s very good at discerning her own position. I tried shaking her with a few of my men, and there were no responses. In fact, she even came to me and told me that there is someone who harbors ill will.”
“Women just need to know how to eat what men give them after all. Chairman Choi and chairman Son will go to Japan soon, alongside some prosecutors and lawyers who have connections to judge Choi. Their flights are all different, but schedule a nice trip to Japan for them.”
The chairman directly mentioning their names meant that the priority of these people was high. He now had to focus on Japan even if he had to delay some work for Soul.
“How’s Giwoo these days?”
“He’s doing well without causing trouble. The prankster nature of his has faded a lot, so there aren’t any problems.”
“How about women?”
“According to head manager Kim’s report, he is not in any deep relationship.”
“A man must meet multiple women so that he knows how to discern devious foxes. Don’t get involved too deeply and just tell me if there’s a girl he’s meeting for a long time.”
“Also, Park Joongjin, was it? That director who’s pretty good. Did the film he was going to do with my grandson fall apart in the end?”
The hand that was dusting a book stopped on the spot. The chairman was on a ladder, looking at the books on the shelves on the 2nd floor. Should he tell him properly that Kang Giwoo did not live up to the director’s expectations? Or should he say it in a nice, roundabout way?
“Little Hong. I want to see you for a long time.”
“Director Park found a new actor. His contract with us ended before it even started,” Janghae immediately stopped thinking and just replied.
“That means that that director fellow dumped my grandson because of his lack of skills?”
“Yes, that is the case.”
The chairman clicked his tongue. Janghae looked at the Sci-Fi novel that fell on the ground with a thud. The weight would’ve been enough to cause a bump or a concussion at worst if it fell on someone’s head.
“Little Hong. You do not need to think fast in front of me. You are only allowed to use your head when I tell you to. Otherwise, you just need to speak the truth as is.”
“I made a mistake.”
“Right, little Hong. That is what I like about you. Other people start making excuses if they talk about how things didn’t go well. I know and see everything, yet they bring up all sorts of excuses to shift the blame. How pathetic did I look to them that made them blatantly lie in front of me? Oh, put that one on my desk. I’ll read it again.”
Janghae put the Sci-Fi novel on the desk, the bottom perfectly parallel to the edge of the desk.
“Is Giwoo, that boy, bad at acting?”
“He’s known as the best among his peers. The directors I’ve met look at him in a good light as well. There are many offers I have rejected to work with director Park Joongjin. Now that things didn’t go well, I plan to take one of those.”
“In any case, that director Park is the best one right now, correct?”
“Yes. His ticketing powers are undeniable.”
“Maybe it was because there was not enough money. Why don’t you try raising the price?”
“I tripled the original contract, but he still refused.”
“What an upright fellow. Just the style I like, hating money, that is. Can’t we do this again? This grandpa wants to give his grandson a good gift.”
“From how you’re apologizing without a shred of hesitation, it seems truly difficult, eh?”
“He’s known as an oddball even in the industry. The director told me this: he has earned enough money, so he wants to do his own work.”
“His own work, hm. Does that mean he’s fed up with commercial films? This is why those art people are so unpredictable. They act weirdly even though they know that art still comes down to money in the end.”
The secretary came in with some medicine. The chairman came down the ladder and gestured to the ladder with his chin. Janghae folded the ladder and gave it to the secretary.
“This medicine is what makes me feel old. When I was young, I never put anything like this near my mouth when I was young because I didn’t want to lose against those pharmacists, but now I have a body that can’t do without. Little Hong, you’ll be sixty soon. You should look after your body then. Don’t suffer in your later years like me.”
“I have been doing exercises, and my wife has been handing me healthy foods as well.”
“Little Hong, you met one great woman. I usually don’t acknowledge women, but that little one is an exception. It wouldn’t be a disservice to call her a general.”
“That’s why I got married to her. We didn’t want to drag down each other’s lives.”
The secretary left with the tray and the ladder. The chairman sighed slowly and sat down.
“I keep getting more worried about my grandson with each day I get closer to my death. For my sons, they can just live off the foundation I have built, but Giwoo, that boy, he’s left my little garden and is creating his own world. He’s such a naive boy that I worry he can do well.”
“I will watch over him from the side.”
“You’re the reason I’m at ease. Giwoo seems to listen to your words too. I felt good since everything seemed to be going well, but that film is making me feel iffy. Do you perhaps know who the actor is that’s working with the director? I mean the actor who replaced my boy Giwoo.”
“I do. His name is Han Maru, and he’s the same age as Giwoo.”
“The same age? He lost to a peer? Now that’s making me feel shameful. So this Maru kid, he seems to be the best among the young ones? I mean, from the way this best director chose him instead of my boy.”
“For skills, I have not watched him too closely, so I do not know, but in terms of recognition, he cannot be compared to Giwoo.”
“Is he just that famous?”
“It’s the opposite. I have looked into it while investigating this matter with director Park Joongjin, and at best, he appeared in a few movies as a minor character, and in dramas too, he has only played minor characters until now. There was a drama that he played a lead role in during his school years, but that was a short series. Compared to Giwoo, his career can be considered shallow at best.”
The chairman nodded while listening to him and slowly stroked the desk.
“And yet the director took that kid instead. Are those two close? From how I see it, he has nothing better than Giwoo.”
“I will look into it.”
The chairman waved his head in dismissal.
“I’m not so shameless to ask a busy man to investigate such things. I’ll look into it personally if he keeps getting on my mind, so you can forget about him.”
The chairman looked down at his phone after putting on his magnifying glasses. Janghae waited standing up without a word.
“JA, so it’s where that fellow, Junmin, is.”
“Yes. Lee Junmin is president of that company.”
“Yes, yes. That makes more sense. The fact that the kid is under his wing means that he has long proven his worth. Now that I think about it, isn’t your son here as well? If I remember correctly, his name is….”
“Hong Geunsoo, sir.”
“It is him. Didn’t he shoot a commercial for our subsidiary company?”
“You must be feeling jealous now, eh? Your son is playing around somewhere else without being under his father. You should’ve beaten moderately. You kept beating them to death, so one of them became an empty shell with none of what makes him a man intact, while the other one became uncontrollable and escaped your fences.”
Janghae lowered his head slightly. His family history he had not exposed anywhere flowed out of the chairman’s mouth. He didn’t even try to think about who he heard that from. The chairman probably had his ears everywhere after all. What made him unnerved was that he had exposed his weakness. The fact that he was unable to control his sons would probably look extremely dissatisfactory to the chairman who valued control over everything else.
“You know, you should beat people so that they cling to you. If you beat them mercilessly like you did, they will run away like their life depends on it. You should show them some affection by beating them up moderately. Or else, just beat them up with the intent to kill. Only then will they not be able to resist.”
“I was insufficient.”
“How can a man be perfect in everything? You were born with a talent for work, so you must be lacking fortune in that area. This Geunsoo, he has completely escaped your crutches, so you won’t be able to do anything about him, but try coaxing the little one and bring him back. When you get old, you’ll feel lonely, and seeing your son will be your only solace.”
The chairman, who was speaking while looking at his phone, picked up the landline at the end of his desk.
“Secretary Kim. Send some calls around and tell them to go along with actress Lee if they get a call from her. Also, send in a call to the boys who caused some messes in the redevelopment district last time. Oh, lordie, don’t use such a scary word like gear. People may misunderstand that I’m telling you to kill a man. Alright, go about your work.”
The chairman hung up on the call. That was how Lee Miyoon’s future was decided. Janghae dearly wished that his name would not be put in that spot one day.
“Little Hong. When it comes to the most dirty work, you should not have other people do it. Only those who know how to soil their hands know how to go up. You get what I mean?”
The chairman made a benevolent smile. He felt like he could take a breather.
“Looks like I should give Junmin a call. My grandson is doing fine with his own powers, but I should still try to give him a little push. As you know, my grandson is not one of those naggy ones like the kids these days. I want to tell those that blame the world or society that they should learn from my Giwoo. He splendidly became independent without anything in his hands.”
“You’re entirely right, sir.”
The chairman put his earphone against his ears and spoke,
“Little Hong, you can get going. Thanks for coming over today.”
“I’ll take my leave.”
Janghae walked backwards out of the study and pulled the door shut. He heard a voice call out “Junmin” as he shut the door.