“...Why does it have to be them again” Lee Mi-Hye felt like losing her mind while confirming the first-class passenger list one more time.
The Jaegyeong group's chief secretary and an unknown VIP responsible for wrecking the mood on Lee Mi-Hye's previous first-class flight were flying again in a plane she was working as a flight attendant.
'I better request a change to domestic flights or something...'
Working as a flight attendant in the first class was already stressful enough, so what if she was forced to deal with passengers like those two over and over again Lee Mi-Hye might develop an ulcer in no time at all.
As if to prove her point, the immediate vicinity of those two problematic passengers had become a vortex of depressing mood that no one could do anything about.
“...Uhm, excuse me, manager” Lee Mi-Hye cautiously asked the senior flight attendant.
“How is the...
mood over there”
“They asked for a strong booze for some reason.”
“...Is it okay for me to have a sip, too”
“No, and pull yourself together, Miss Mi-Hye.”
“...Yes, ma'am.” Lee Mi-Hye sighed deeply, then stared outside the plane's window.
'I guess I'll get married soon and quit...'
Maybe the time for Lee Mi-Hye to quit this job had come.
'What the hell, isn't this wording basically an acknowledgment of their romance'
Jo Gyu-Min's eyes quaked uncontrollably as he stared at his phone's screen.
Before clarifying whether they were in a serious romantic relationship or not, most celebrities would use wordings such as 'close enough to be oppa and dongsaeng' to announce their current statuses.
And then, one day totally out of the blue, there would be an announcement of an upcoming nuptial, and seven months later, another announcement of a baby on the way! At least, wasn't that how these things usually played out
Jo Gyu-Min surreptitiously glanced in Kang Jin-Ho's direction.
Thankfully, Kang Jin-Ho wasn't the type to check the celebrity gossip sections frequently, so he wouldn't know what this kind of headline could mean.
Still, it would be wise to keep such articles far away from Kang Jin-Ho for the time being.
Kang Jin-Ho tutted and asked, “Are we there yet”
‘Uhm, excuse me, Mister Jin-Ho... There is a screen right in front of us, and its job is to show us how much time is still remaining, you know’
Jo Gyu-Min felt a sudden urge to brazenly tell Kang Jin-Ho to look at the bloody screen, but his lack of courage prevented him from further 'stimulating' the young man.
only have one and a half hours left, Mister Jin-Ho.”
“...It's taking longer than I remember.
It felt like the trip to China took less than this.”
Jo Gyu-Min avoided Kang Jin-Ho's glare and groaned softly under his breath.
Complaining about the flight taking too long, when he couldn't even finish his shopping
'...I'm gonna kill that gigolo idol bastard!'
Jo Gyu-Min swore to teach that brat from the Voice or the Piehole or whatever an unforgettable lesson—a lesson that some people on this God's green Earth were totally off-limits!
Kang Jin-Ho suddenly shot a deeply suspicious glare in Jo Gyu-Min's way.
“Didn't you tell me before that Eun-Yeong's private life was strictly monitored and managed”
“Didn't you tell me that, Mister Gyu-Min”
Jo Gyu-Min shriveled up into the airplane's chair like a dried squid.
“W-when I was in charge, yes, it was water-tight, Mister Jin-Ho.
But with how busy I've been lately, I had to hand over some of the responsibilities to Code.
It seems that's where the hole in the defense has come from.”
“I see...” Kang Jin-Ho muttered, then entered his silent mode again.
However, that pressured Jo Gyu-Min even more.
'I… I would've preferred if you criticize me, you know!'
What was Jo Gyu-Min supposed to do or think when Kang Jin-Ho had stopped talking there!
The silent pressure coming from the seat next to him pushed Jo Gyu-Min's mind to the brink of a nervous breakdown.
that goddamn gigolo bastard...!'
Jo Gyu-Min's eyes fiercely burned.
Just how hard did he work to 'raise' Kang Se-Ah to this point Wasn't she the success story Jo Gyu-Min had created He had sacrificed his sleep to research choreography suitable for her.
He had even diligently researched various local and international idols until his hair fell out just for a perfect idol concept for that girl! But to think some stinking snake was busy drooling over a yet-to-be-polished gemstone!
'I'll kill him! I swear, you're dead meeeeat!'
“Dear passenger...” The smiling flight attendant approached Jo Gyu-Min with a tray of snacks.
“Here is your wine, sir.
Do you need anything else”
Jo Gyu-Min stared at the attendant while ignoring the plates of cheese and wine as his voice grew firm and loud.
“A cup of cold water!”
Kang Jin-Ho nodded briefly.
“...Of course.” The flight attendant, Lee Mi-Hye, put on a cramped smile while groaning in her mind.
'Yep, I better get married soon...'
The plane continued to fly to Korea as Lee Mi-Hye's sighs dissipated into the air.
“W-what the heck!” Kang Yu-Hwan jumped up in surprise when the front door was violently shoved open.
He turned his head to find his wonderful son standing by the doorway with both hands carrying luggage.
However, he was busy emitting a rather strange aura.
“S-son Did you get scammed in China”
Kang Jin-Ho asked in a quiet voice, “...Father, where is Eun-Yeong”
“She didn't come home last night.”
“Is that so” Kang Jin-Ho nodded, then headed to the pantry to put down all the things he had brought with him.
Once he was done, though, he suddenly turned around and headed back to the exit.
Kang Yu-Hwan got up from the couch.
“Where are you going, son”
“I'm going to fetch Eun-Yeong.”
“Mm But, isn't she in the middle of her scheduled performance or something Yet, you still want to bring her here”
“Yes, Father.” Kang Jin-Ho nodded firmly.
Kang Yu-Hwan was left confused at his son's firm, unyielding voice and could only tilt his head.
Why was his son acting like this all of a sudden “Jin-Ho, what's gotten into—”
Just as the Kang senior was about to ask for an explanation, Kang Jin-Ho yanked his phone out, tapped on its screen a few times, then presented it to his father.
“Mm” Kang Yu-Hwan scanned the screen and spotted the headline of a certain celebrity gossip piece.
Afterward, his brows powerfully trembled.
“Bring her home.
And in less than one hour, too!”
“Roger that.” Kang Jin-Ho nodded, then swiftly exited the house.
Soon, a loud Vroom! rocked the neighborhood as a red Lamborghini sped through the street.
“Well, I'll be…” Kang Yu-Hwan helplessly shook his head.
His little girl said she wanted to shoot for her dream, so the whole Kang family had done their best to assist her, but then...
A kid, who hadn't even gone to a university yet, was already the subject of a love life gossip piece How could he not groan grandly at this turn of events
Kang Yu-Hwan continued to ponder, then pulled out his own phone.
Can you also find this punk mentioned in the article”
As it turned out, Kang Jin-Ho's father was already a step ahead of his son.
“In Gapyeong Got it.
Thank you.” Kang Jin-Ho ended the call after receiving the information about his sister's whereabouts from her agency.
Kang Eun-Yeong was currently performing at an event in the district of Gapyeong, so that was where he would go next.
The twelve-cylinder engine seemed to be excited about the prospect of stretching its legs in a while as it roared its powerful engine note and continued to relentlessly propel the vehicle's body forward.
“W-what the heck is that!” A passenger in one of the other cars using the same road as Kang Jin-Ho freaked out as a red supercar sped right past them before quickly becoming a tiny speck in the distance.
“Wow, that's an actual Aventador!”
“...Has to be a gold spoon, eh How envious.”
“Isn't that driver terrified of driving like that Even if it's an Aventador, getting into an accident at that speed will be a one-way ticket to the other side, you know”
“Didn't you see his super-precise passing maneuver just now Damn, man.
That's one hell of a driving.”
Whatever the other road users were saying behind him, Kang Jin-Ho couldn't care any less at the moment.
His eyes remained ablaze as he drove the car fast.
So fast, in fact, that even the lady in the satellite navigation sounded flustered and hurried as well!
“Here I am!”
“Are you ready to blow the roof off the stage”
Kang Eun-Yeong smiled brightly.
The floor director smiled back at her.
We'll leave it to you, Miss Se-Ah! Since our stage is set in the outdoor environment, the acoustics might not be great, so please don't forget to check your in-ear monitor before going out there.”
“Okay! Please don't worry!” Kang Eun-Yeong maintained her good-natured smile while replying.
The smiling floor director exchanged a couple more pleasantries with her before exiting the backstage waiting room.
“...Eeeek!” Kang Eun-Yeong suddenly threw a cushion at the door after the floor director had left.
“Smiling like a snake and all!”
Obviously, she had already checked out the celebrity gossip section.
“Aaaaahk! That insane bastard really went and did it!”
Her mistake was following her older peers in the industry for a night out, which led to her run-in with that psycho.
After that unfortunate meeting, that slimy bastard tried to glue himself to her like a leech, saddling her with a massive headache.
Kang Eun-Yeong's trembling hands pulled out her phone from her bag.
She noticed all those missed calls from her agency, but those didn't worry her at the moment.
What a relief this is that orabeoni is in China right now...'
If her older brother got wind of this debacle, her fate would most likely be far worse than her hair getting pulled around as a punishment.
Maybe, just maybe! That insanely stiff-upper-lip older brother of hers might accuse her of being too superficial and pretentious for her age, then mow her hair off completely!
'B-before Oppa comes home, I gotta fix this situation somehow!'
Kang Eun-Yeong's phone vibrated noisily, and she unhesitantly snatched it up.
- Miss Se-Ah How is your broadcast preparation going I just heard that Byeong-Hoon is about to go up soon.
I'm almost finished with my preparation.”
- Will you be okay I mean, with all that nonsense happening right now, wouldn't a live broadcast be a bit too much to handle for you If you're feeling unsure about this, it's okay to tell me, you know We can always reschedule.
Kang Eun-Yeong hurriedly replied to the agency's section chief calling on her phone, “No, I'm fine, Chief! I can definitely do this! Besides, if I reschedule right now, people will start suspecting that something fishy is really happening in my life.
Anyway, are you finished preparing the press release”
We're gearing up to release it as you do the live broadcast.
Are you sure about this
“Yes, I am! I'm really okay.
Besides, that's not the problem right now, you know Before my Oppa comes back from China, we must deal with the situation.
If we don't do that, it...
It'll really be my funeral, you know!” Kang Eun-Yeong replied as a hint of desperation crept into her voice.
- Ah, that.
Miss Se-Ah, there's something I must tell you about that, and...
Before the agency's section chief could finish, a loud voice from outside the room called out to Kang Eun-Yeong first.
“Miss Se-Ah! Please get ready!”
“Chief, I gotta go and do the broadcast now! I'll call you afterward.”
- W-wait! Miss Se-Ah
Kang Eun-Yeong ended the call and quickly checked her in-ear monitor.
She still didn't forget to grumble, though.
“I had to work so hard to get this far, you know!”
She had to go through so much hardship in Starwiz to make her debut as an idol.
And she finally gained enough public awareness to get her career on a solid path.
No way in hell she would get herself down from a tiny little hurdle like this!
“Argh, that stupid stalker-like bastard...!”
A man should know when to gracefully bow out after the other party had expressed her lack of interest.
Indeed, one should know when to stop being so clingy before it became cringey!
Kang Eun-Yeong headed to the standby area just behind the stage and waited for the performers ahead of her in the queue to finish.
Once the current set was over, it would be her turn.
A few backup dancers coughed in slight nervousness, prompting the road manager to quickly rush up to them for a bout of a pep talk.
“Don't forget that this is a live broadcast! We can't afford to make a mistake! But that doesn't mean you should be too tense either!”
One of the dancers shot back.
“Are you telling us to get tense or not Make up your mind, will ya”
“All I'm saying is, keep your tension at a manageable level! Just enough that it won't affect your condition!”
Kang Eun-Yeong snorted quietly at that.
It had already been two years since her debut.
In other words, this was her third year in the entertainment circus already.
At this point, she wouldn’t get nervous about a live broadcast.
“It's starting! Everyone, go up to the stage!”
“Do your best, and don't make mistakes!” Kang Eun-Yeong also threw out a pep talk of her own to the dancers while running up to the stage.
The camera lights hadn't been turned on yet, but her entrance caused loud cheering to explode forth from everywhere.
'It'd been nicer if this was an indoor arena...'
In an indoor arena, spotlights would have prevented her from getting a good look at the audience.
But an outdoor arena like this meant she could see some people in the audience whispering to each other about something as the spotlights flashed about.
Kang Eun-Yeong's emotions threatened to rear their heads, but she bit her lower lip to stop herself.
A person was bound to run into many headwinds during their life.
Falling on their knees and crying like a baby every time that happened wouldn't help them grow and mature.
That was what Kang Jin-Ho had told her, and those words were now Kang Eun-Yeong's life motto.
'You think I'd falter from something like that'
Her song's prelude section began, and Kang Eun-Yeong elegantly gripped her mic while slowly getting into the rhythm of the song.
Once she perfectly pulled off this performance and explained the truth about that phony scandal, people should soon forget about there being such a rumor and move on.
That was why...
That was when Kang Eun-Yeong's figure stopped performing her practiced dance moves and began to shiver as if a bolt of lightning had struck her.
'N-no, it can't be'
She thought it was impossible.
No, that was what she wanted to believe.
Unfortunately for her, though, her eyes could clearly see the figure of a man in the audience slowly making his way toward the stage.
“N-no, wait...” Kang Eun-Yeong forgot that she was holding the mic when she muttered that.
She didn't want to believe it, but that man over there had to be her orabeoni, someone she had known for the past two decades.
Kang Jin-Ho and his emotionless face reached the front of the stage while he continued to stare at her in utter silence.
'I… I'm in the middle of a live broadcast, though...!'
However, she already knew—she knew which of these two options would cause greater damage to her career: one, messing up a single live broadcast or two, getting on her orabeoni's bad books.
Kang Jin-Ho raised his hand, then beckoned at her to come.
Kang Eun-Yeong's shoulder's slumped low, then she wordlessly hopped down the stage.
Kang Jin-Ho narrowed his eyes.
Kang Eun-Yeong grabbed Kang Jin-Ho's extended hand.
He then pulled her along like a cow being dragged to an abattoir through the cheering crowd.
F*cking hell! What is she doing!” the PD cried out before collapsing with bubbles in his mouth.
Meanwhile, the floor director could only shake her head in amazement.
“Well, what an unprecedented moment in broadcast history this is.”
Indeed, this spectacle would be recorded in Korea's history as one of the most shocking moments on live TV.