Chapter 21 - Criminals #3
Moonlight Flower wasn’t the culprit. Tae-hyuk had checked her belongings using the Robbery skill, and Rosario wasn’t among them.
If so, who was the thief who robbed his house?
Tae-hyuk first thought about how to find the real thief. First of all, it was hard right now, as they might be looking for other prey or hiding in their shelter.
Night was the time of the thief. It was difficult to specify the position of his free moving target.
‘My opponent is a thief who targets this area.’
Thieves were extremely territorial. So most of the time, they would continue to work in their ‘designated territory.’ It was the reason why thieves were often caught in the same area. Some time had passed since the crime was committed, and it was impossible to find the thief's whereabouts right now.
Tae-hyuk utilized all of his knowledge.
'There is a place where a thief who commits a crime must go. I need to go there.’
A thief had to dispose of the items they had stolen and change it into money. The so-called person who ‘received stolen goods.’
Most of them would buy the goods at a reasonable price. In some cases, they would hire a thief directly if there was something they absolutely needed. They wouldn’t directly dirty their hands and would receive huge benefits.
There was a small problem.
‘I have never been to one...’
A broker of stolen goods had their own nest.
Tae-hyuk remembered there was a broker who managed a thief near Cheonggyecheon. But he had only heard about if through a thief at the prison. He didn’t know who the stolen goods broker was.
Of course, what they did was illegal. It wasn’t like a chicken house that would be advertised on flyers.
If he knew this, then he would’ve listened more carefully...
Tae-hyuk shook his head.
‘If I had known, then I would’ve memorized the lottery numbers. First of all, I have to make the most of what I know.’
Tae-hyuk decided to meet up with the broker.
He had the crime skills, and he could take advantage of it. Then he would be able to get what he wanted.
* * *
The sun was rising as Tae-hyuk stretched out. He got up and went through some light stretches.
On his desk was a reference book recommended by An Eun-young.
After school ended, he would learn directly from her. Other than that, he needed to study by himself.
‘My stats didn’t go up today...’
If the study skill wasn’t present, then it took him almost 10 times longer for his stats to rise.
In order for Tae-hyuk to be on a similar level to An Eun-young, he needed to raise his school rank by almost 200. It needed to be done within a month. It would’ve been impossible if he didn’t have the help of the studying skill.
‘I would love to spend all day with Eun-young but...’
She had her own life. He couldn’t do that.
In the end, he had to study alone while An Eun-young was at school.
‘Why am I desperately trying to become 1st in the school...’
He couldn’t complain to anyone.
The Demon Revealing Mirror showed that he had dark circles under his eyes.
There was only one person who would come and see it.
"It is An Eun-young.”
He couldn’t help but sigh.
"Anyway, it is time for the stolen goods broker to do business.”
Thieves worked at night, and would check their equipment as they disposed of stolen items during the day.
Naturally, this was the broker’s main activity time.
Tae-hyuk searched through his vague memories as he headed to Cheonggyecheon.
* * *
“Is it this place?”
Tae-hyuk hid in a back alley and looked at a building.
On the surface, it was a pawn shop that didn’t seem that suspicious.
The problem was the people.
‘Everybody has a tired face, as if they couldn’t sleep at night. Uh, that person just yawned.’
In addition, the person exited after five minutes and was carrying a thick bundle of money. There was no sense of urgency when they entered the pawn shop.
'This is the correct answer. They’re all thieves!’
10 people entered in just one hour.
Tae-hyuk clicked his tongue.
'There are so many thieves in the country.’
This was why no matter how many taxes was paid, there was always a deficiency.
There was nothing good about facing other thieves. Tae-hyuk waited for all the customers of the pawn shop to leave.
"Uh, is it Tae-hyuk?”
A sleepy voice was heard from behind him.
Moonlight Flower was standing there while yawning.
“... Moonlight Flower noona?”
Unlike yesterday, Moonlight Flower was wearing normal clothes.
However she was wearing dark sunglasses to hide her identity. She wasn’t able to concede one thing.
'Jeans and a top that shows her belly... It is better than the leather clothes she wore yesterday...’
Even so, the exposure was too high. He didn’t know where to look.
Moonlight Flower approached and plastered herself onto Tae-hyuk’s side.
Then she spoke in a chirpy voice.
"Did you come to get supplies from Mama?”
Tae-hyuk’s eyes shone.
'The broker is called Mama?’
"Mama? Yes, I wanted to buy something.”
"Huh ~ Is that so?”
It seemed like he could take advantage of meeting Moonlight Flower here.
Tae-hyuk asked with a sly expression.
"Did that house from yesterday not belong to Noona? No, you couldn’t even cross the wall properly. Why are you going to a broker of stolen goods...?”
Moonlight Flower’s face turned red. She waved her hands and exclaimed.
"Now, I'm not trying to dispose of stolen goods! Yesterday, I accidentally broke a stick. I’m trying to get a new one...”
"You should be careful.”
Tae-hyuk nodded with a convinced look.
Thieves would also buy things from brokers, as the brokers also sold equipment. Moonlight Flower had a variety of tools. She wouldn’t have bought them from an auction, so most of them would be purchased here.
“I came to buy equipment. What did Tae-hyuk come to buy?”
"That’s not it. I need information.”
“Hrmm. Obviously, there is something that you are looking for. That other thief must have stolen it. Then, did you come to the broker to ask if somebody had come to the store to sell it?”
Tae-hyuk’s eyes widened.
He thought that she was just a stupid thief. However, she was smarter than he thought.
Moonlight Flower smiled at the expression on Tae-hyuk’s face and poked his cheek.
“Ahah, is that the answer? You shouldn’t make fun of a woman’s senses.”
“……. Please keep it a secret from Mama. Wouldn’t it be nice to share each other’s secrets?”
He needed to ensure that Moonlight Flower didn’t reveal it.
Moonlight Flower folded her arms and said.
"Well, I’ll won’t reveal it.”
"But isn’t Noona curious about the thief who ignored the rules and invaded someone else’s territory?”
“Yes. I am curious.”
"Then do you want to go with me? Don’t you have something to do here anyway?”
Moonlight Flower’s eyes widened.
"I-Is that so? I also didn’t want to go alone.”
"Then I will be the one talking. Just watch from the sidelines.”
Moonlight Flower seemed to be familiar with the stolen goods broker. If he entered with her, then the broker’s wariness would reduce. He would be able to obtain what he wanted earlier.
'Shall I get some information about Mama from Moonlight Flower?’
Tae-hyuk asked casually.
"You seem to come here often.”
Mama’s store was on a corner of an alley in Cheonggyecheon. It looked like any other ordinary pawn shop. A place that lend money for goods received.
"It is the most famous place for handling stolen jewellery in the area.”
The important thing was for the broker to evaluate the goods and calculate the correct price.
Among the items that the thieves handled, there were many fakes. It was up to the broker to judge the stolen goods.
Moonlight Flower started talking about things that Tae-hyuk didn’t even ask. She was a person who would be called an enemy to herself.
Tae-hyuk stored the things Moonlight Flower told him in his head. Information was always valuable.
"Then let's go."
Tae-hyuk and Moonlight Flower opened the door and entered the pawn shop.
A woman who was painting stood up and welcomed them.
"Welcome. How can I help you?”
The woman seemed to be in her early 30s. She was dressed in black mourning clothes. A beautiful woman who gave off a mature atmosphere.
"Hey, Ajumma! I came here to ask you something. Well, not exactly me but this guy."
“Omo. It is Moonlight. Come on. Didn’t I tell you to call me unni, instead of ajumma?”
“I understand! Mama unni!”
"I will say it one more time, if you call me ajumma then I will stick a knife in your belly.”
“Ahaha... I’m sorry.”
Mama laughed, but she had a strange expression on her face.
“Is he your boyfriend? Well, you are pretty. Why are you just standing there?”
"Nope. He is just a younger brother that I know. He is a little naive.”
“Really? Anyway, I’ll go and get some cold drinks. Wait here.”
Moonlight Flower talked in a familiar manner to Mama.
Tae-hyuk was just watching with an open mouth.
‘I should have noticed when I heard the name Mama. I didn’t think that it would be Big Mama.’
Tae-hyuk felt dizzy.
Big Mama was one of the big criminal brokers.
She dealt with counterfeit art that went into the range of tens of billions of won. She was a representative of South Korea, just like the Russian or American mafias.
He had entered the lair of a tiger.
‘I-I have to get out of here!’
Then Mama spoke.
"Omo, Moonlight. Your brother is trying to run away? However, I hope he knows that this place is free to enter, but not free to leave.”
Tae-hyuk wanted to cry.
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