just like that.
“In that case, I'll prepare things accordingly.”

Kang Jin-Ho nodded.
“Thank you.”

Jo Gyu-Min hesitated slightly before continuing.
“And, uh, regarding the aforementioned Starwiz's skeletons…”

“Is it serious?”

The agency’s history is marked by many instances of bad management.”

Kang Jin-Ho's eyes narrowed.

Jo Gyu-Min explained even more, “Your sister was spared the worst of it, actually.
Probably because the agency's director thought she was worth something.
However, other trainees from poor backgrounds have been subjected to far worse treatment.”

“Is that so?”

Jo Gyu-Min sighed.
As you've said before, that agency had crossed the line and shouldn't be allowed to exist.
If we hadn't known, fine.
But now that we know, turning a blind eye is a bit…”

Kang Jin-Ho nodded in agreement.
“I'll leave that agency to your discretion.”


“What will happen to Park Hyeok-Gi, then?”

“The prosecuting authority will investigate him.”

Kang Jin-Ho narrowed his eyes again.
“And then?”

“He'll most likely get arrested and spend some time behind bars.”

“I see…”

“Well, then.
Have a good night, Mr.

“You too…”

Kang Jin-Ho bade goodbye, then climbed outside the car.
He went back inside the house while maintaining a stiff face.
His parents were still talking to Kang Eun-Yeong in the living room.

'I haven't seen this scene in a while…'

Indeed, he couldn't remember the last time the entire Kang family sat down and had an earnest talk like this.

Kang Yu-Hwan sighed and spoke, “Eun-Yeong, you must be tired from what happened today.
Go get some rest, my child.”

“Okay, Dad.”

Before she could leave, though, Kang Jin-Ho called out to her.
“Hold on for a sec.”

“Mm? What's up, Oppa?”

“There's this thing, but…” Kang Jin-Ho pondered for a brief moment before continuing.
“I forgot to ask about the name.
Do you know which talent agency has ties to large corporations?”

Kang Eun-Yeong tilted her head.
“Large corporations? Are you talking about Code?”

“As I said before, I don't know the name of that agency.
But I do know it's one of the top four in the country.”

She nodded affirmatively.
“Mmhm, it sounds like Code.”

Kang Jin-Ho grinned at her.
“That's where you'll transfer to.”

But Kang Eun-Yeong gave him a weary look instead.
“Oppa, Code won't accept someone like me…”

“Why wouldn't they?”

“I've auditioned for them several times before, you see? But I didn't make it…”

Kang Jin-Ho tutted and replied in a too-honest way, “That's because you didn't have your current looks back then.”

“Wha—” Kang Eun-Yeong began clutching her fists tightly after her brother's exceedingly pragmatic reply registered in her brain.
In the context of their conversation, he was saying she had gotten a lot prettier these days, but why did she feel so displeased right now?

As usual, Kang Jin-Ho remained oblivious to his slip of the tongue and continued.
“In any case, you'll be transferring there.
It has been decided already.”

Kang Eun-Yeong stared at him suspiciously.
“You're not lying?”

So, no need to be restless, okay? Get some well-deserved rest.”

“Mmhm. Thanks, Oppa…”

Kang Jin-Ho went to his room when the discussion ended, then switched off the lights.
After lying down…
he patiently waited for dawn to arrive.

How many hours had passed? Kang Jin-Ho quietly opened the door and stepped into the living room.
That was when he noticed his father sitting alone by the kitchen’s dining table while nursing a drink in silence.

“Father? You weren't asleep?”

What about you, son?”

“As you can see…”

“Mmhm. You couldn't sleep as well?”

Kang Jin-Ho didn't say anything.
He simply stood in the living room and looked at his father's pained expression.

Kang Yu-Hwan took a sip and muttered, “Yes, me too.
When I think about how my little girl was suffering in that place, I can't sleep at all.”

Kang Jin-Ho wordlessly studied his father's slumped back.
This was not the first time he saw his father like this.
He squeezed his eyes close as his anger began boiling again.

'I feel the same as you, Father.'

Kang Yu-Hwan took another sip of the booze and sighed.
“It angers me that there's nothing I can do.
It’s pissing me off.”

“I understand…”

Kang Yu-Hwan gripped the cup tighter.
“And when I think about how the bastard that put my child through hell will sleep easy at night! I can't even…”

“Still, you need to get some sleep, Father.”

“Indeed, yes.
I must sleep…”

Kang Jin-Ho smiled gently.
“Father, please go to bed.”

“I will.
You should do the same.”

“Of course…” Kang Jin-Ho nodded.

Kang Yu-Hwan got up and headed back to the bedroom, but he stopped and looked back.

“Yes, Father.”

“You worked hard, my son.”


“You did something I couldn't even do.
I am ashamed to be your father.”

“Don't say that…”

“Whew…” Kang Yu-Hwan sighed deeply, then stepped inside the bedroom.
Kang Jin-Ho stood there and watched his father close the door behind him.
Then, he wordlessly turned around to leave the house.

It was dawn right now, well before daybreak.
It was also the darkest hour of the night.
In other words, it was the perfect time for the monster sleeping within him to awaken.


Inside Starwiz's office…

“Urgh…” Park Hyeok-Gi roughly scratched his head.
“What the hell am I supposed to do now?!”

The matter with Kang Eun-Yeong had ballooned beyond his control now, thanks to Jaegyeong Group's involvement.
Who knew that a major corporation like Jaegyeong was backing her? Wasn't this basically the same as a pearl hiding in the mud, but he was too dense to notice it and treated it like trash?

“What options do I have left?” Park Hyeok-Gi held his head.

Now that Jaegyeong was in the picture, one wrong move could lead to the utter destruction of Starwiz.
The two companies might not be in the same industry, but that wouldn't matter to a corporation as huge as Jaegyeong.
Erasing some idol agency like Starwiz out from existence should literally only take one night for them.

I gotta go and apologize to that girl's family.”

Park Hyeok-Gi had to resolve this crisis somehow, even if that meant going to Kang Eun-Yeong's home and beg for leniency.

“Goddamn it! Why the f*ck is this happening to me?!” Park Hyeok-Gi cried out in rage.
Look at him, still stuck in his office until dawn, unable to go home! “F*cking hell…
That b*tch had so much money, so why…
She could've just donated some, so why the hell did she try to save some pocket change and screw me over like this?!”

He clenched his teeth in anger.
He heard that the haves could be quite stingy, but to think that she would be one of those stingy f*ckers!

First thing tomorrow, I gotta go to that girl's home and…”

“No need to waste your breath.”

“W-Who's there?!” Park Hyeok-Gi jumped up from his seat in fright and hurriedly looked behind him.


The office's light suddenly went out.
It was still the middle of the night, so with no light coming from the overhead lamps, the office was suddenly bathed in eerie darkness.

“W-Who’s there?! Who!” Park Hyeok-Gi hurriedly grabbed the lone desk lamp off his desk, ready to smash the intruder in the head.

“You already know who I am…”

Park Hyeok-Gi's figure began shuddering after recognizing that voice coming from the darkness.
He definitely remembered hearing it earlier in the day.
From earlier…”

The voice didn't respond to that.

Park Hyeok-Gi urgently cried out.
“W-Why are you doing this?!”

“Kekeke…” A low cackle seeped out from the darkness.

Park Hyeok-Gi's grip on the lamp stand strengthened.
Showing up in the middle of the night and behaving this way indicated that the other party didn't come here with good intentions.
He had to get ready for a fight.

“What was it about Kang Eun-Yeong?”

All of a sudden, Park Hyeok-Gi's body floated into the air.

“Kuh-heok?!” He urgently grasped at his throat.
Someone—or something—was choking him while lifting him up in the air! “Kkuh…
huk! Keok…!”

The pain left him disoriented and lost, and as he flailed about, a quiet growl reached his ears.
“Say it again.”

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