Daeun knocked on the door to the manager of news section’s office. “Come in,” came the voice from the inside. Daeun bowed to her superior as she entered the room. “You asked for me manager?”
The manager looked up from her paperwork, “You are?”
“Oh! Daeun-ah,” the manager stood up from her chair and gestured Daeun to sit on the sofa with her. “I know other employees has been treating you coldly after you refuse to be insider source, I will order them to be more professional at work. As a good friend, of course you can’t be insider source for your own friend’s scandal, I completely understand.”
The manager tapped Daeun’s hand, “You see, it seems since the arrival of Resa Gunbuin and Seyeon Gunbuin, the press has been filled with royal news. Finding out who they are, what they wear, where are they going, who they meet…”
Not sure where the conversation is going, Daeun kept listening to the manager, “The Lady Kyunghyang decided to make royal news section.”
Daeun smiled uncertainly, “That is a good idea.”
“We would like to promote you to be the assistant of the royal news team.”
Taken aback, Daeun asked, “Ex-excuse me?”
“How can you learn to be real journalist if your task consists of making copies and taking everyone’s coffee orders, especially since you are the only intern now. This is a great opportunity for an intern, we never offer anyone a promotion this fast.”
“I am flattered, but why me?”
“It is not a secret that you are a close friend of Jongin Gun and Seyeon Gunbuin, if you ask them nicely, maybe they will let you know what happen behind the palace gate.”
Daeun shifted away from the manager, “They don’t even live in the palace.”
“I know, but they have morning greetings,” the manager moved closer to Daeun, “Who will the public trust more than a magazine, with royal family members’ best friend as their royal news team assistant? Think of this as you protecting your friends from future false rumors. You don’t want to happen right? Especially knowing that you could’ve prevented it from happening.”
Daeun sighed, what the manager said makes sense, “Thank you for this opportunity manager, I will not disappoint you.”
The manager of The Lady Kyunghyang News Section smiled in satisfaction.
The sound of trucks passing back and forth, jackhammer drilling the ground, chop saw cutting pipes, and other construction noises made it difficult for anyone to communicate. The strong autumn wind doesn’t make the dry and dusty work environment any better.
A young man walked to the fifth floor with pipes on his shoulder that could weight up to thirty kilogram in total without making any noise or complaining about the dust that just blew right at his face. He carefully placed the pipes and arranged them with the other pipes his colleagues brought.
“Grow some muscle young man. When I was your age, I could lift twice the weight you just transfered at once,” a man who seems in his forties said.
Kyungsoo chuckled, “Yes, yes, mister Kang, I believe you,” he wiped the sweat on his forehead.
The older man placed his arm around Kyungsoo’s shoulder, “Should we get lunch?”
“I have been a construction worker for almost thirty years, but this job is the third one that provide us food,” the older man said as they walk to the rest area, “I hope this project will last long, then I can save lunch money and enroll my daughter to after school classes.”
As both men queued for their lunch, Kyungsoo asked, “On the previous two projects, do they also gave you rice for lunch?”
“One of them did, the other one gave us bread or kimbap, it was still better than nothing,” the man answered. “You look like you’re not much older than my daughter, why are you doing construction work?”
“I am starting med school next semester, and I am saving for tuition fees,” Kyungsoo took a bite of rolled eggs.
“Wow, you’re a smart student then, good for you. I heard med school will take a long time to finish, will you have to pause your study when you enlist in the military?”
Kyungsoo shook his head, “I was discharged four months ago, that’s one of the reasons I choose this part time job, to keep myself fit,” Kyungsoo rolled his sleeve and show off his twenty three months of hard work.
Mister Kang laughed, “Good for you, you won’t be able to get a lot of time to do sport when you started school. I don’t think our pay would cover of med school tuition fees though.”
Kyungsoo took a sip of his seaweed soup, “That’s why I have second part time job at night, and I’m also going to apply for scholarship.”
The older man patted Kyungsoo’s back, “Good luck to you, young man. Won’t your parents help with the tuition?”
“They will try as much as they can, but with my father’s salary as a bank manager, I think I should help as much as I can.”
“If it is going to be a financial burden, why don’t you choose a course of study that is within your budget?”
Kyungsoo stopped his activity and started to smile remembering a certain tiny friend of his, the senior laughed once again, “Judging from your face, I know why you choose med school, she is also a med student, right?” he guessed.
“Actually, she is studying business, but her father wanted a doctor as his son-in-law,” Kyungsoo scooped some rice topped with vegetables.
“You are incredible to choose med school because a future father-in-law,” mister Kang clapped, “Isn’t it too ambitious of your father-in-law. I mean, his daughter is not even a med student.”
“That’s because he’s the owner of a hospital, someone has to manage it, that's why she study business,” Kyungsoo answered nonchalantly, with surprise the older man spat some food just took a spoonful of, “Mister Kang!” the younger man complained.
“He doesn’t work at a hospital, but owns one?” mister Kang hold Kyungsoo’s hand, “Don’t let her go, young man. No matter how many obstacles you will face, you should hold on to her.”