Mercenary Black Mamba - Chapter 338
Right. He would have grown to become an amazing person by now.
His heart started aching again. If that kid had been able to study properly, he would have become a judge or a professor by now. The people responsible for twisting the life of the sole person, who could have brought fame to the Park family, were his wife and daughter. Rage started welling within him again.
“What are you thinking about?”
Park In Bo looked at Jung Ah Young, like a man who had just woken up from his sleep.
“If you keep drinking soju without a side dish, you’ll ruin your stomach.”
“Leave me alone, brat. If a few shots could kill the human Park In Bo, I would have already died. My body isn’t rotting because of alcohol but because of my mind. How can my body be fine when my insides are rotting! I’m truly jealous of you, Ah Young,” Park In Bo sounded more pitiful as he spoke.
“Boss, stop pretending like you’re pitiful. You do realize a person who has 99 things can envy someone who only has one? You do realize it’s Christmas Eve today?”
Surprised, Park In Bo’s head turned back to her. He had kept himself busy with matters of the company while coming up with a plan to destroy the Jang b*stards, to the point that he had no time to pee. How could he remember Jesus’ birthday when he didn’t even remember his own? Nonetheless, he wondered if Christmas was really the man’s birthday.
A wife scheming to chase her husband out and take over the company, and a husband planning to destroy his in-laws—it was truly like a family that appeared in dramas. He had unknowingly called Jung Ah Young out on Christmas Eve because of his loneliness.
“A young lady who spends Christmas Eve in a chicken eatery and bar with a grandpa is also rotting, you do realize? If that very lady is a virgin who never had a boyfriend, her heart will rot to the point of no rescue! Hehehe!”
Jung Ah Young giggled as she filled her glass with soju. It was a half-joke, half-complain of a woman who’d be turning 30 in a few days.
“Brat, you’re making me feel sorry.”
Park In Bo’s face turned apologetic. Now, he was stuck on the receiving end. There was an old saying that people who didn’t listen to the laments of an old virgin who couldn’t get married, the laments of a widow who kept vigil for three years, and the laments of a pr*stitute who lived by spreading her legs would be damned.
“Let’s have a drink as people whose insides are rotting. Forget about the naggy Professor Kim for now, yeah?”
“Hehe, you know how to drink.”
“For our happiness!”
Park In Bo and Jung Ah Young shoved the soju in their glasses down their throats at the same time and shivered.
The soju they consumed in one-shot burned down their throats. That was why he couldn’t forget alcohol. It helped him forget about the pain in his chest.
“Here. Have some snacks.”
Jung Ah Young grabbed a piece of slightly burnt dak-dong jib, shook off the burnt bits on the iron cooking plate, and offered it to him.
“Wow! For the first time, I’m finally experiencing the luxury of being served a side dish by a young woman as a grandpa. What if I die while experiencing this?”
Park In Bo joked as he extended his neck across the table and ate the dak-dong jib.
“Ugh, what else can I do? An angel should volunteer for our pitiful boss.” Jung Ah Young smiled.
Park In Bo’s eyes narrowed. From up close, she wasn’t bad-looking. Overall, her face was cute, and her skin was as clear as a baby’s.
“Hmm, our Ah Young has grown up, I see. You were a runny-nose brat with pimples who had just graduated from a Girl’s Commercial High School when you first sat in the office. Now, you’ve become an angel.”
“Boss, why are you provoking me again? Don’t call a woman a ‘runny-nose brat!'” Jung Ah Young fought back and glared.
“Brat, the truth won’t disappear even if you hide it. Hehehe!”
He, who found her reaction cute, laughed.
Jung Ah Young had suffered in the early days of his business. She often had to stay late into the night in the office. She worked like a high-quality motor, not refusing the hardest of tasks. If Jung Ah Young wasn’t there, he would still be sitting in a small office, which operated a few buses. That brat was also someone he had to take care of before he died.
Jung Ah Young’s eyes followed her boss’ gaze. There was nothing outside other than the pitch darkness. Her boss stared emptily outside the window. She was aware of her boss’ feelings. Her boss was someone rumored to have no blood or tears. In fact, he grew the business without any blood or tears.
She preferred macho men who were ambitious and confident. Her boss, who ran without stopping to reach his goals, was macho. Compared to other men who blamed and relied on others, men who were dedicated to their goals were more manly.
Jung Ah Young was a strong drinker. One or two bottles of the Kumbokju wasn’t enough. She received the bottle, lifted the cap away with an opener, and poured the alcohol herself before shoving it down.
A true alcohol lover didn’t sip on alcohol. Alcohol tasted the best when it was shoved down. A strong liquid that wet the tongue, scratched the esophagus, and warmed up the stomach—the sensory experience was the true pleasure for alcohol lovers. If the men who approached her could at least drink alcohol in such a refreshing manner, she might agree to go out with them.
Her boss had excellent business skills. He had abandoned long-distance bus routes and concentrated on mid-distance bus routes. He didn’t even turn his attention to the express bus routes, which were new and sparkling. One express bus was the price of two city buses. The policy that concentrated on the number of buses built around turnover prices became a huge success. Basketfuls of money rolled in. Her boss, who had gathered enough money, turned his attention to oil. He did so at a good time. No, her boss always had an excellent eye for business.
The oil industry grew rapidly thanks to the free trade stance and the favor of the U.S., which opened up the consumer goods market. Her boss quickly grasped the flow of change. He immediately spent all of the money, which he had earned from Good Heart Lodgings, on purchasing textile factories.
Debt leverage was her boss’ choice of strategy. He had purchased a company with his money, put up the company as collateral to borrow more money, and bought another company with it. During the period of rapid growth, debt served as leverage. In an economic structure where growth was stagnant, such a strategy was impossible.
Her boss had purchased more textile factories by offering bribes and sexual favors to related financial officials and public officials. The company which was born from consolidating all five fabric manufacturing plants was Good Heart Oil company.
Park In Bo was a talented businessman, not a moralistic one. Ah Young liked her boss, who pushed ahead like a tank. She found her boss reassuring as he wasn’t shaken by emotions. No matter what anyone said, he was a good person who had helped her in her time of need. He was a savior, someone who helped protect her family.
“Boss, you have a lot you owe me, don’t you?”
“Brat, I’ve never forgotten or lowered your pay. You even get paid during the holidays! You pay the bill.” Park In Bo smiled happily.
Aside from his siblings’ family, the only other person he felt indebted to was Jung Ah Young.
“Hmph, stop trying to steal from me. If I didn’t catch that pickpocket back then, you would have missed your timing to build your company, boss. You can’t just buy dak-dong jib for the company’s first-class founding member.”
“Brat, you emptied my wallet back then because you ate 10 person’s worth of bulgogi. You saw the dust coming out of my wallet, didn’t you?”
“Hey, you need to calculate it properly. That wasn’t 10 person’s worth, but nine person’s worth,” Jung Ah Young, whose eyes turned wide, protested as though she was falsely accused.
“You ate nine person’s worth of meat and a bowl of noodles. That’s 10 person’s worth in total.”
Jung Ah Young grumbled, having lost the war of words.
Jung Ah Young had met Park In Bo in March, the same year when she had graduated from a Girl’s Commercial High School. She had been crying on a bench at Dongin-dong’s central park. She had sent in her application to several companies after graduation, but none had requested her. A commercial high school graduate was no different from a company intern who did all kinds of minor tasks. The requirement for joining the company wasn’t skills but body and face. Jung Ah Young had failed to secure a job every time.
The name “Ah Young ” meant pretty and elegant like a flower. Unlike her name, Jung Ah Young was barely 150 centimeters tall and had a plump body that weighed around 60 kilograms. Her face was full of pimples like volcano craters. She was given the nickname “moon skin” by her friends.
Although she felt the urgency to support her family especially during such a difficult time, getting a job wasn’t easy. She heard a shout when she was tearing up on the park bench.
Surprised by the shout, Jung Ah Young raised her head. A 10-year-old boy with a bag under his arm was running away like a squirrel. A tired-looking man was chasing after him.
Huh, it’s a pickpocket.
Jung Ah Young stuck her foot out, blocking the pickpocket’s path. Just like a pickpocket, the kid had a good sense of balance. It seemed like he was about to fall forward, but he managed to find his footing. Jung Ah Young kicked both sides of the kid’s legs to throw him off-balance, before grabbing him by the waist to shoulder-throw him on his head. Jung Ah Young had been attending her brother’s Judo school for four years.
The pickpocket, who hit his shoulder on the ground, screamed.
“Agh, you b****!”
The pickpocket stood up, but the man, who finally caught up to him, tackled him immediately.
“You b*stard, you’re dead!”
The two men fought. The pickpocket fought back quite well. While they were busy fighting, Jung Ah Young grabbed the bag, which had dropped on the floor.
“Ajussi, leave him be!” Jung Ah Young shouted at the man.
Park In Bo let go of the pickpocket’s arm.
“F***, you guys are all dead.”
The pickpocket hurled out a few more curses before disappearing in a flash.
Huh, what was I doing!
Park In Bo realized how foolishly he’d acted. It was a done deal when he got back his bag, but he continued to fight the pickpocket at his old age. He could have injured himself if the pickpocket was holding a weapon.
“Thank you very much. These documents are very important, you see. Why did that brat take it? If it weren’t for you, I would have been in big trouble.”
“Oh. It’s nothing.”
“No, who would willingly help a stranger like you? Take this.”
Without much thought, Park In Bo pulled out some money from his wallet and handed them to her.
“No, it’s okay. No, thank you,” Jung Ah Young declined.
A hand was about to pop out of her throat, but she didn’t want to be rewarded for such a minor matter. Park In Bo felt awkward.
“Then, what…? Ah. I’ll buy you a meal. What should we eat?”
Coincidentally, it was lunchtime. Jung Ah Young was also hungry since she had skipped breakfast. Then again, she didn’t want to follow a man she had just met.
“Yaya, I have two daughters who are much older than you. What’s the point of being suspicious? Let’s hurry.”
Jung Ah Young could no longer refuse. She ended up following Park In Bo since he insisted.
“What do you like?”
“I eat everything well.”
“You seem so,” Park In Bo said, glancing at her round body.
You’re a dwarf s***-stick, yourself.
Jung Ah Young glared at his unexpected insult.
“Let’s go eat the most expensive bulgogi.”
“Wow, yes, let’s!” Jung Ah Young cheered unknowingly.
That was a menu she didn’t dare think about during difficult times.
“So, you’re looking for a job, but it’s not going well?”
“Yeah, because I look like this…”
“What about it? You look good even when you’re a little plump. Why don’t you just give up on them and work with me?”
“I’m planning on setting up a transportation company. You said you graduated from a commercial high school, right? You can be a secretary and take care of the office.”
“Brat, I might have a bit of a temper, but I’ve never lied. Even my nephew knows that.”
“Okay. You need to pay me as much as the market pay rate, okay?”
Park In Bo and Jung Ah Young came to a mutual agreement in the restaurant. Although it was slightly strange that he had mentioned his nephew, she didn’t ask. Even though she was called plump, she was happy since she finally secured a job. Jung Ah Young ate nine person’s worth of bulgogi and became the first employee of Good Heart Lodgings. Jung Ah Young had been the one to help him recover the authorization documents, so if it was fate, then let it be fate.
Unlike her plump appearance, Jung Ah Young was smart and tight-lipped. Park In Bo had gained a genius at a time of need, perhaps, he had saved a village in his past life. Aside from the pickpocket incident that allowed them to meet, Park In Bo and Jung Ah Young overcame the challenges of building up and expanding the company together. The two became close, like father and daughter.
“If you don’t want to be called a ‘runny-nose brat,’ do you want me to call you ‘moon skin’ instead?”
Park In Bo mentioned Jung Ah Young’s high school nickname. It was a nickname that Jung Ah Young hated as much as she hated rats. It was a nickname she hated more than when she was being called plump.
“Aigo, you’re going to turn me deaf. If you get any more temperamental than this, you’re going to start calling me a dwarf s***-stick.”
“You know me well.”
“Fine, I’ll stop. That’s an embarrassing term I don’t want to hear. You have a drink too.”
After Jung Ah Young emptied her glass, Park In Bo asked her a question, as though in passing.
“Ah Young, is the psychological trauma different between a woman who was almost raped and a woman who was raped?”
He’d talked about all kinds of things until now because he wanted to ask her that question. It was something he could only ask Jung Ah Young.
“What, did Wu Tak do something again?” Jung Ah Young asked, her eyes got big all of a sudden.
“No, that’s not it. Just answer me.”
“Rapists are b*stards worse than creatures. Their things should be cut off.”
Park In Bo flinched.
“Unlike a rape attempt or forced harassment, rape is established only when there is s*xual penetration. Assault is often accompanied in the process. The intensity of a victim’s psychological trauma isn’t determined by the possibility of s*xual penetration but rather the victim’s notion of chastity? You can’t compare a bar madam with a housewife.”
Jung Ah Young had dealt with three rape cases for Wu Tak. She had gained some legal knowledge in the process of reaching a settlement with the victims.
“You’re saying an ordinary housewife who was almost raped might suffer greater psychological trauma than a bar madam who was raped?”
“Yeah, I think so. If she’s a housewife who loves her husband, wouldn’t she suffer from embarrassment and guilt to the point of death since she was close to getting raped, even if there wasn’t any penetration?”
Park In Bo’s heart sank. Was Kim Mal Soon really dead? Even if she did die, could she bear leaving her young son behind?
The pain of his lungs shrinking rushed in. He turned his head to look at the window, in case Jung Ah Young saw. The ground was white. There must be a bright moon just like that day. A white face, borderline blue, flashed before his eyes.
 Chicken gizzard.