A silence descended within the meeting room, which was broken by Jimin's sonorous voice.
“Mr. Sungyoon cut right to the point. We have no plans on doing business with Daesung Energy.”
“I heard there was a misunderstanding between Mr. Woo Sungyoon and my son, so Mr. Sungyoon's reaction is understandable. However, it is surprising to hear such a statement from the president of a company. Is it because you're still young? This is business. You have to think about profit and the interest of your company, and avoid making decisions based on personal feelings.”
Hooyoung was barely maintaining a smile as he spoke. However, Jimin’s expression remained the same as she answered him.
“Jungbum wasn’t established to do business. That's why we don’t care about profit.”
“Profit isn’t your goal? What nonsense...! Then why are you running your company?”
Hooyoung’s words turned a little rough, but Sungyoon replied to them instead of Jimin.
“Raiding the Great Labyrinth.”
It was a short phrase, yet everyone understood what he meant.
“That’s right. Ultimately, my company’s goal is to raid the Great Labyrinth. I’m sorry to say this here, but our moonstone business is only a means to replenish our resources for this goal.”
Some were impressed by her bold words, while others were offended. However, one thing was certain. No one objected to what she had said.
“Look at what she is spouting! Do none of you have anything to say? This woman thinks running a business is a joke!”
Hooyoung had spoken forcefully in order to get others to agree with him. However, Jimin continued without blinking.
“You have no right to interfere with how I do my business. Even if others object to it, we will not bend our knee. We will do as we like.”
No one spoke out against her. They neither took Jimin’s side nor sided with Hooyoung. The people in the meeting room took a wait and see approach.
The Connector companies hoped the Minister would accept Jimin’s stance as it would set precedence and strengthen their rights.
On the other hand, the moonstone processing companies were already in a tough spot because of the moonstone shortage. If they made the wrong move, they were at risk to lose access to the moonstones provided by Jungbum. Therefore, they were worried about crossing her.
Hooyoung became very frustrated when there was no response in his favor. The situation had betrayed his expectations. Moreover, he had misjudged the goal of Jungbum and Sungyoon.
This time Hooyoung turned to look at the Minister even though he knew the Minister wasn’t the answer to his problems.
In fact, the Minister was adamant about avoiding the feud.
‘If things go wrong, and he switches nationality...’
Sungyoon was a 1st Gen capable of operating within the Great Labyrinth. On top of that, he was a hero to the whole world. His growth rate was astonishing. Many countries wanted him; the main one being the US. The US was the world leader, and they were at the forefront of technology with enormous capital at their disposal.
He was also very popular in Britain. After the attack on London, Princess Grace had joined his party, and it had the effect of keeping his popularity high in her country.
Sungyoon’s party also had two natives from Canada.
Aside from these countries, many more wanted Sungyoon.
If Sungyoon declared his desire to change his nationality, these countries would bring everything to the table to entice him.
‘He hasn’t shown any desire to change his nationality, but it was said that he wouldn’t hesitate to change it if given a reason.’
The Minister thought about the information he had about Sungyoon.
If he unnecessarily offended Sungyoon and the Connector changed his nationality, the Minister would lose his job. His political career would be put in jeopardy.
“Let’s end the meeting for today. I’ve heard all your concerns. When we meet next, we can work toward finding a solution that everyone can accept.”
The Minister quickly ended the meeting, and everyone trickled out of the room. Sungyoon and Jimin stood up in order to leave.
“… Let’s go!”
Hooyoung glared at Sungyoon and Jimin one more time before departing with Jaeho in tow. Jaeho refused to meet Sungyoon’s eyes. He silently looked forward as he crossed the door.
“You dumb bastard!”
As soon as they got into the car, Hooyoung berated Jaeho.
Jaeho closed his eyes.
“Is this how you conduct your business? How did you let it get this bad?”
Hooyoung kept a public image that made him look magnanimous. However, it was only a mask. He was cold and heartless. It was apparent where Jaeho had gotten his personality from.
“We could barely lay down the foundation of our moonstone processing company, yet you dare ruin it like this!”
“It isn’t completely dead.”
Jaeho tried to come up with an excuse.
“I hope so! If that isn't the case, you can forget about becoming the successor. In fact, I might just disown you!”
Jaeho felt a chill run down his spine. Hooyoung didn't speak any further, but Jaeho knew he couldn’t relax.
‘Father is serious.’
The furious Hooyoung had given Jaeho a task and then shown zero interest. It meant that Hooyoung was really giving Jaeho his last chance.
‘I have to succeed somehow.’
Hooyoung didn’t know about Jaeho's investment into Gagarin·Yang city. Jaeho had lost everything in that investment.
'If he finds out about that...'
Jaeho’s body shook.
‘I have to pull this off somehow. Even if I can’t return the company to its former glory, I have to find a way to at least make it functional...’
While an unpleasant silence deepened between the two, the car smoothly drove toward their destination.
Jaeho entered his office, took off his necktie, and violently threw it on the ground.
His office that had felt like a throne to his kingdom in the past was basically his jail now. However, Jaeho soon centered himself.
‘It’s fine, Lee Jaeho! This is your final tribulation! If I pass this with flying colors, Father will see that I can manage a crisis! I’ll be one step closer to receiving the keys to the company. I’ll be ahead of my brothers.’
Like the famous quote that went 'in the midst of every crisis, lies a great opportunity', Jaeho was trying to spin his situation into a positive. But his thoughts were cut off by the ringing of his phone.
Jaeho frowned when he saw the name displayed on the phone. He was about to end the call, but he changed his decision at the last second.
“What is it?”
His poor mood was reflected in his voice. Those familiar with him would have ended the call if they heard his voice right now. However, the person on the other side of the phone had a thick skin. She wasn’t someone that would back off so easily.
- It’s me.
“What do you want again!”
Jaeho's annoyance with her was revealed in his voice. He had just come back after being humiliated by Sungyoon, and Miyun’s voice made him think about Sungyoon again.
- I'm calling about my father’s company. Are you really going to end the contract?
“You are tiresome. Are you still talking about that?”
When it came to money, Miyun was tenacious.
“I’ll tell you this for the last time. Clean out your ears and listen! I have no intention of doing business with your bitch of a father! I will never form a contract with his shitty company! Get your head out of your ass, and stop calling me! If you love money that much, go sell your body!”
Without waiting for a response, Jaeho ended the call.
“That bitch doesn’t know her place.”
However, he felt a bit better after unloading his anger.
‘That piece of shit was useful for something.’
With a calm mind, Jaeho started thinking about his future plans.
Ddoo! Ddoo! Ddoo!
The robotic disconnect tone hit her ears. Miyun kept her phone on her ear even though the call had ended. However, nothing changed, and she kept hearing the disconnect tone repeating itself.
Miyun finally ended the call. She had listened to Jaeho’s abuse and experienced being cut off, yet her expression was unexpectedly calm. She stood up and went to her desk. After taking out a key from her pocket, she opened the lowest drawer.
Her hands grabbed a thick stack of paper. Miyun then took out her phone and dialed a number. However, this number didn't belong to Jaeho.
- What do you want?
The cold voice of a woman responded to the call as Miyun firmly bit her lips.
Miyun stood at the entrance of the cafe and looked at her surroundings. She soon found the people she was looking for. Her high heels clicked as she walked toward the table.
She roughly threw her bag in the empty seat next to her and looked at the man and woman sitting in front of her.
“It seems you aren’t in a good mood.”
The contents of these words expressed concern, but the tone of the voice made it clear that she was taunting her. Miyun did her best to avoid the ridicule on Jimin’s face.
“It's none of your business.”
“All right. Would you like a cup of coffee? I can buy you that.”
“I don’t feel like drinking coffee with the two of you.”
In the past, Miyun had an easygoing and impudent personality. However, all that was nowhere to be seen around the current Miyun. In fact, one could see her cold demeanor and a venomous air around her.
“As you’ve requested, Mr. Sungyoon didn’t speak to the media. We did that for free, so why are you in such a bad mood?”
Jimin continued to antagonize Miyun, but the latter remained silent. Miyun just took out an envelope from her handbag and threw it on the table.
“How much are you willing to give me for this?”
“Is this what I think it is?”
“Stop playing around.”
Jimin was about to touch the documents when Miyun snatched it back.
“You have to give me the money first.”
“We don’t know if it's real, yet you want us to give you the money?”
“Please transfer the money first. Then I’ll hand it over right afterward.”
Jimin looked at Miyun for a brief moment, then nodded.
“Alright. If it's fake, I can just recover the money by suing you. How much?”
“Twenty million dollars.”
It was an astronomical figure. Miyun expected Sungyoon and Jimin to reject the offer and was prepared to lower to figure if push came to shove.
However, their reactions were out of her expectations.
Sungyoon—who had crossed his arms and remained silent all this time—pressed a number on his phone. It connected him to his bank. After a short conversation with them, Sungyoon turned toward Miyun.
“I sent it.”
Since the amount was so high, Miyun became suspicious. Sungyoon frowned at her reaction.
“Do you think I’m like you guys? If you're suspicious, you can check your bank account.”
Miyun opened her phone and did exactly that. Sungyoon was right, and she gulped when she saw the overwhelming figure of twenty million dollars in her bank account.
“I’ll take this now.”
Jimin took the documents, and Miyun didn’t stop her this time. After taking out the documents, Jimin went over them with Sungyoon.
When Miyun looked at their faces that were right next to each other, a complicated expression appeared on her face. If she hadn’t betrayed Sungyoon, she would be the one sitting next to him. He was a man that could hand out twenty million dollars without blinking an eye.
She could imagine herself wearing designer clothes and carrying an expensive bag while standing next to Sungyoon with a pretentious smile on her face. However, that scene would only appear in her mind.
Sungyoon had finished looking over the documents. The paper was indeed a copy of the contract between him and Jaeho.
“I’ll be going now.”
Miyun no longer wanted to converse with the two of them.
“Wait a moment.”
Sungyoon stopped Miyun from getting up.
“There is something more important.”
Sungyoon shook the envelope.
“What are you talking about?”
“Give me the waiver to disestablish maternity for Shinhae.”
‘I forgot about that. Maybe, I could string him along and extract more money from him using this?'
Miyun had to change her mind when she saw Sungyoon's face.
“I will never budge on this. If you do anything stupid, you’ll be very sorry.”
Even if they were monsters, Sungyoon’s job was to kill living creatures. The pushover from the past had vanished, and he had been replaced by a scary man.
If this had happened in the past, Miyun would have shamelessly walked out without giving in to his demands. However, she had gone through a lot recently, and it had tired her. She gulped as she opened her mouth.
“… I understand.”
On that day, Miyun lost all her rights toward Shinhae.Previous Chapter Next Chapter