Chapter 564: Oldboy

Oldboy!

Qin Ye knew at once what Lee Jung-sook was talking about.

It was a classic Daeian movie. In the film, Oh Dae-su was arrested for drunkenness. After his friend picked him up from the police station, he was kidnapped and woke up in a sealed hotel room, where he remained trapped for the next 15 years. The same food was delivered to him daily through a trapdoor, and he could do nothing but watch the television. There was no sunlight, nor was he able to tell night from day. The only illumination in the room was the dim electric lighting that he had access to. [1]

Anyone trapped under such circumstances would most certainly go mad.

But Lee Jung-sook was even more ruthless than that.

She wasn’t even going to give them the benefit of having television in the room!

“Do you think I’m being too ruthless?” Lee Jung-sook casually ruffled her hair, “Eat, or be eaten. Be nice to others, and they’ll step all over you. Or do you really think that… they deserve forgiveness?”

Qin Ye shook his head.

Having noticed that Lee Jung-sook had lost her memory, this family was planning to brainwash her and force her to marry a good-for-nothing jobless man. Had he been in her shoes, he would most certainly have reaped their souls at the earliest possible opportunity and subject them to the strictest punishments available in Hell.

Can you really punish someone if they allege ignorance? Whose responsibility is it? Who is the law supposed to protect? And who’s supposed to exact justice?

None of these matter in Hell. Even if one cannot justifiably sentence them to punishment, there’s always plenty of hard labour that needs to be done.

Just then, the door to the roof was kicked open with a loud bang.

“How dare you?!!!” Lee Hyomin screamed at the top of her voice and rushed in with a group of people following closely behind. She pointed at Lee Jung-sook in an accusing manner as she stormed over, “How dare you hook up with other men after marrying into our Lee family?! Look, everybody! You’re all eye-witnesses today! This is the daughter-in-law of the Lee family! What have I done to deserve this?!!”

Her voice was incomparably shrill. She raised her hand high above her head and prepared to swipe at Lee Jung-sook’s face as she glared menacingly at Qin Ye.

“Tell me… how long have you been hooking up with this pretty boy?! Let’s see if I don’t beat you to death--...”

Pak!

Lee Hyomin had just arrived in front of Lee Jung-sook when she suddenly felt a sharp pain on her cheeks. A split second later, she felt her entire world spin about her and collapsed to the ground in a daze.

It took her three full seconds to process what just happened. Then, trembling with rage, the pointed at Lee Jung-sook, “You… You dare hit me?!”

A bright red palm print appeared on her cheeks. At once, she began to wail at the top of her voice, “Everyone… You’re all witnesses to a travesty today!”

“This is the daughter-in-law that has married into the Lee family! Tattoos! Good-for-nothing! Unemployed! Living off us! And now, she’s even hooked up with someone else! She’s kicking aside our dear Dae-jung after using him! Dae-jung! I’m sorry… It’s all my fault... I should never have agreed to this marriage! She’s not worthy to be our daughter-in-law!! She’s a demon!! She’s a witch!!”

The crowd that had gathered behind to watch the commotion immediately exploded into a buzz. Just then, Lee Dae-jung burst through the crowd, “Mom! What’s the matter with you!”

Lee Hyomin pointed at Lee Jung-sook and howled wildly, “Look at your dear wife!”

“She even dares to hit her mother-in-law…” She howled wildly as she scrambled to her feet. Her son’s arrival must have filled her with courage, because she immediately charged forward boldly again, “Are you trying to take my life?! How dare you abdicate your duties to take care of your mother-in-law and your family?! And you even have the gall to ask us to take care of you?! I was just wondering where you’d gone to fetch a pail of water! To think you were here on the rooftop, seducing some young man!”

Just then, the crowd that had gathered suddenly parted once more with a clamour of footsteps. Three seconds later, several soldiers dressed in their camouflage uniform rushed right to the rooftop and pointed the muzzles of their guns at everyone present. The leader of the troops immediately yelled at the top of his voice, “Nobody move! Everyone, on your knees! Hands in the air!!”

“Hurry! Right now!!”

The crowd froze for a moment, and then promptly complied. A split second later, a middle-aged commander wearing a three-star epaulette emerged from the crowd, wiping off the sweat that was percolating on his forehead. He was followed closely by a dozen others in black suits. The commander immediately looked around desperately, “Ms Lee… Ms Lee?!”

“Here.” Lee Jung-sook waved her hands, and the commander immediately heaved a sigh of relief as he rushed over, “Why are you here? Do you know you gave us a huge scare? How are we supposed to explain things if something happened to you?!”

What the hell is going on?!

At once, all eyes fell on Lee Dae-jung and Lee Hyomin. Both of them were completely dumbfounded.

This is Lee Jung-sook?!

Three stars… We’re talking about the colonel! He’s the second-in-command around here! And the soldiers who keep us safe all this time are actually treating her like a god?!

And that’s not to mention the fact that the men in black have already surrounded Lee Jung-sook with guns in their hands!

Who the hell is she… At once, a wave of indescribable fear surged in their hearts. Unfortunately, their hearts soon sank even further when they saw Lee Jung-sook approach them with a group of bodyguards around her.

“Now, say it again.” She leaned over and pinched Lee Dae-jung’s cheeks with a hand, “What am I to you?”

Even a fool could understand what was going on right now. Lee Dae-jung shuddered violently, “You… you… you’ve recovered your memory?”

He could see an unusually odd smile on Lee Jung-sook's face.

“That’s right…” She smiled faintly, “I’d like to thank you for your kind hospitality all this while, so… I’ve prepared a special place just for the two of you. I assure you that it will be absolutely safe.”

She smiled faintly and finally released her grip around his cheeks. Then, she beckoned to one of her bodyguards and whispered a few words into his ears. Moments later, he nodded, “Understood.”

Then, with two swift chops of their hands, the Lee family mother-and-son duo passed out without a sound.

“Ms Lee, do you have any more orders for now?” The colonel asked with a smile.

Lee Jung-sook picked up an article of clothing that the bodyguard had handed over to her, and she began to straighten out her appearances, “Prepare a room and a computer for me. I don’t need any internet connection.”

“Right away!”

………………………………………………………..

The fragrant smell of coffee filled the entire room. Even someone like Qin Ye who didn’t know coffee could tell that these were excellent coffee beans, just by the aroma that was diffusing into the surroundings.

This was a tent that had been specially set up by the soldiers. The men in black were all standing guard immediately outside the tent, whilst several other mercenaries stood guard in another ring as an added defensive measure. In short, the security around the tent was so tight that not even a fly could break through. Qin Ye couldn’t help but feel awed by the sheer extent of Lee Jung-sook’s power and influence.

I’m afraid not even the president gets security treatment like this…

The tent was brightly lit. A computer had already been set up in the room, and a series of documents bearing the seal of Daehan’s Blue House had already been loaded onto the screen.

“These are top secret information. This records all measures implemented by the government ever since the first living dead was sighted here in Daehan. This is a copy. I couldn’t get the originals.” Lee Jung-sook stretched out like a lazy cat. She had already changed her clothes and taken a shower to freshen up. Long, straight hair draped over her shoulders, and she rested her long black legs on a footstool with a cup of steaming hot coffee in hand.

“I won’t look at these for now.” Qin Ye clicked on the ‘x’ button at the top right of the screen, and then turned to Lee Jung-sook, “What I truly want to know about is your interactions with the Russian Underworld over all these years.”

Lee Jung-sook sighed, “Seems like you’ve done your research. Truth be told, you probably know just as much as I do. Most of my contact has been with No. 3, and rarely with No. 2. The information pertaining to the MV Sewol incident is also saved in this computer. That’s about as far as my interaction with them goes.”

Qin Ye continued to stare intently at her, “But I’d still like to hear you talk about it.”

The records saved on the computer didn’t include Lee Jung-sook’s opinions and deductions after all.

Lee Jung-sook took a sip of coffee and glanced at Qin Ye with a bemused smile, “Alright. I don’t like owing others a favour either. But… let me think for a moment where best to begin.”

She retracted her smile and deliberated for several moments before addressing Qin Ye once more, “First of all, you should be aware that it’s almost a given that every country in the mortal realm would have spies from each of the other countries concealed among their numbers.”

“It’s the same in the netherworld as well. I’ve crossed paths with several of these entities. After all, my position of power and influence here in Daehan naturally draws these entities to me. Over the last 50 years, those that have contacted me include spies from Nippon, Rus, and several other places. The Daehan Peninsula is a treacherous place. In fact, it might not even be an overstatement to say that it’s still a hotly-contested territory.”

“And to this end, anything that the netherworld wants to do would always bring about repercussions within the mortal realm. This is why most underworldly spies would always search out mortals who hold positions of power and influence. Naturally, they would either possess the religious leaders, or even collude with religious organizations in order to carry out their plans in the name of religious teachings.”

Her gaze grew distant, almost as though she were looking back at the past, “It’s a long process. Then, some time later, a high official of the sect finally became its leader, setting the perfect stage for collaboration. And it was precisely for this reason that some time ago, around the 1940’s, Russian Emissaries finally got in touch with a man who held enough power and influence to change Daehan.”

She paused for a moment, and then went on, “His name was Choi Tae-min.”

What a familiar name… Qin Ye tried recalling who it was, but to no avail. Thus, he continued listening intently.

“Approximately 50 years ago, Choi Tae-min set up a cult combining elements of Buddhism and Christianity, calling it the Yongsaw-gyo, or Church of Spirit World. He claimed to have been given a divine revelation. According to reports, he did have contact with the supernatural. However, this was no divine revelation.” [2]

She sneered and took a sip from her cup of coffee, “It was the god of death.”

“The spies of the netherworld had infiltrated the midst of various religious organizations and sowed the seeds for future collaboration. Choi Tae-min was but one of these seeds, albeit not in the slightest bit an insignificant one. He founded the Church of Spirit World, a cult that worships death, and in fact claims to live with death in mind. Then, in the 70’s, his teachings began to gain traction and take off. It was also around then that the previous president’s mother, Ms Park, was assassinated. On impulse, Choi Tae-min wrote a letter to the then-22 years-old Ms Park, inviting her to join him in an epic journey with death.”

Qin Ye coughed dryly, “Do you really have to put things that way? It makes my heart beat faster…”

Lee Jung-sook chuckled, “Well, if Choi Tae-min wasn’t incredible, it would necessarily mean that Ms Park was simply too gullible to have fallen for his antics. It’s got to be either of the two, because… the letter that he wrote to Ms Park at that time claimed that… he could put her back in touch with her dead mother. In his words, he said - ‘Feel free to drop in if you wish to hear your mother’s voice again. Your mother spoke to me through a dream, telling me that her daughter is silly and still wallowing in sadness and grief’. I’ve still got the letter with me. Do you want to peruse its contents?”

Qin Ye gasped in shock.

To think that the Queen of Samsung would have in her possession the original letter establishing relations between Ms Park and Choi Tae-min… Just how much power and influence does Lee Jung-sook have here in Daehan?!

Shelving his thoughts, Qin Ye probed deeper, “Did she… believe him?”


2. Some of this was in fact real, while other parts are naturally embellishments. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choi_Tae-min 

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