“Of course, it is good as it is now, but let’s do it once more. Producer Oh, in my opinion, it would turn out better.”
“If team leader says so…”
Producer Oh JiWan’s reaction was sour, but he didn’t seem to oppose it that much. It was because KangYoon never said he was bad or criticized him in any way. After Producer Oh JiWan agreed, KangYoon picked up the microphone.
“JooAh, can you do it once more?”
After JooAh’s permission came, KangYoon gave the sign straight away. This time, KangYoon interfered lightly.
“Producer, I think JooAh’s voice feels a little too big. When she pronounces ‘sute’, her pronunciation vibrates a little bit. I’d like you to edit this part.”
“Is that so? Shall I adjust the high-tone since that part has a high melody?”
“That’s your area of expertise, Producer Oh, so I will leave it to you.”
Of course, KangYoon could do it himself, but he didn’t interfere with the details. Producers, at their heart, were people who do art. They were prideful people. It was not good to meddle in their affairs too much. KangYoon was someone who had 10 years of experience, so he knew this fact very well.
The recording proceeded with Producer Oh JiWan adjusting the tones. JooAh was absorbed in her singing with her eyes closed, and the people outside also wrote what they needed while appreciating her singing coming out of the speakers. Each of them did their own work, whether it was coming up with a concept or thinking up ways to advertise this.
‘Phew. Now the grey disappeared.’
KangYoon was relieved at the scene with no grey light. When he saw the delicate white light growing stronger, KangYoon could finally sigh in relief.
“Huh, why did I skip this part when it could get so much better? Team Leader, it’s at least a hundred times better than it was previously. This, I have learned something from you today.”
After the recording ended, Producer Oh JiWan took off his hat and scratched his head. Recordings always left some disappointments. However, days like today, when he was refreshingly satisfied, were rare. He was the one to record JooAh’s albums until now, but it was the first time something like this happened, so he smiled awkwardly. He thought he had the best grasp on JooAh’s voice… But today, he accepted defeat.
“No, I just gave a small push. It was Producer Oh who did the work. I have a great feeling about this song. Shall we rest a bit?”
“Shall we? Well then, rest up, everyone.”
When Producer Oh JiWan declared it was resting time, the studio members who were controlling the various machines in their positions sang in delight, and the other staff left with a cheer.
“Would you like a cup of coffee?”
Chairman Won JinMoon offered KangYoon, who was looking at paperwork in the corner, a can of coffee.
“Thank you, Chairman.”
“Everyone’s resting, but you are not letting go of work… May I?”
“Of course, please sit.”
KangYoon covered the paperwork he was looking at when Chairman Won JinMoon sat down next to him.
“Do you know the rumor about you?”
“A rumor, sir?”
“Work-man. You’re known for carrying paperwork with you, whether it’s in the resting lounge or in the office, so people call you work-man.”
“It’s certainly better than mymy.”
KangYoon laughed. It meant that he was working hard, so he didn’t mind it.
“Has it been four months since you came to this company?”
“It has been that long already, huh. I came in during the summer, so there’s not much left of this year.”
“Yes. So when is the album coming out?”
“I am thinking December, around the second week.”
“So there’s not even two months, even if we count this month. You must be busy. Isn’t it fine for you to release it next year? Is there a reason for you to release it within this year? I think you’re aiming for the Christmas season, but you will have to compete with the big singers of Japan.”
Do you stand a chance against the big singers of Japan? – This was his meaning. However, KangYoon confidently replied:
“It’s alright. Instead, we will only see results if we release it then.”
“Can I ask you for the reason?”
KangYoon hesitated a bit.
‘Like the chairman says, two big singers came out. The male idol group Eiden and the female idol group Hydrea. However, the two leaders of these groups get mixed up in a scandal, a big scandal where they get photographed in front of the hotel. So they ended up ruining the Christmas marketing and delayed their comeback stage too. The singers who prepared comebacks at a later time, while thinking that these two were going to have their comebacks, were all dumbfounded and made a comeback hurriedly, but Christmas ended up being blank. We are using this opportunity.’
KangYoon’s strategy was like this. Of course, doing things like reporting the scandal himself as a noise marketing strategy was a no-go. That would negatively affect him in the long term. Making enemies was not a good choice when considering the future. Anyway, he couldn’t say he knew the future, and even if he did, wouldn’t he just be treated like a psycho?
“You’re not thinking of competing with groups like Eiden, and you’re not letting go of the fanbases of women in their 20s and 30s, right? Hmm. I don’t have anything to say since I gave you all the rights, but I want to listen to the reason in the director’s meeting. Can you do it?”
“I will expect good things. Right now, my expectations are very big. I mean it.”
I am curious but I will hold back for now. Instead, I expect acceptable results – this was the hidden meaning behind Chairman Won JinMoon’s words. It was a pressure mixed with expectations. KangYoon answered straight away, knowing that fact. Chairman Won JinMoon seemed satisfied with KangYoon’s answer as he tapped KangYoon’s arm and stood up from the seat.
“The Chairman’s a chairman, alright. He gives me pressure this way.”
KangYoon muttered to himself as he saw Chairman Won JinMoon’s disappearing back. Superiors were always uncomfortable to be with. He headed back to the studio for the recording.
JooAh’s recording for the album continued for a long time. The lights KangYoon saw were mostly white, but there were some grey lights from time to time. From problems with pronunciation to problems with the voice, the guitar, the microphone, etc… There was a variety of reasons for grey light to appear. Of course, when something trivial happened, Producer Oh would solve it himself while KangYoon advised from time to time, and the song was finished.
By the time another song was finished recording, it was already past midnight.
“Thank you for your hard work…”
JooAh, who came out of the booth with sweat all over her body, spoke with a feeble voice. Not only her, but everyone was exhausted.
“Thank you for your hard work, everyone. Let’s end it here today.”
When KangYoon proclaimed, everyone sang in delight, and the studio became empty in no time.
“Thanks for your hard work… Phew. I can’t do a recording tomorrow…”
“You’ve worked hard. Is your throat bad?”
“No, it’s not that. I just spent too much energy… It’s the first time this happened…”
When KangYoon asked while passing her a bottle of water, JooAh drank with big gulps and replied.
“Let’s rest tomorrow and resume recording the day after. Producer Oh should rest too tomorrow and let’s resume working the day after.”
“Can we do that?”
“For work like ours, efficiency is very important. Let’s rest up when we can and resume with vigor.”
When he said that, Producer Oh cheered with a haggard face, packed his clothes, and ran straight out. Nowadays, the poor guy didn’t even return home once. This kind of rest was literally honey to him.
“Oppa, in this situation, aren’t you supposed to drive them more? Everybody does that normally.”
“Doing that doesn’t help. Working while exhausted doesn’t bring out any efficiency, and people should rest to charge up their energy to work. They don’t do well by just working thoughtlessly.”
“Wow, is it like that? You’re quite different to the people I worked with until now, I think?”
“What about me?”
“I am very comfortable. The other unnis and oppas also say that. Oh, that doesn’t mean we’re looking down on you, you understand, right?”
The planners who directed albums until now were all workaholics who were crazy about working. However, KangYoon was different. Of course, he did a lot of work himself, but he didn’t urge the other staff to work. The staff all felt comfortable with their work so their efficiency increased. The KangYoon JooAh felt, was like that.
“To say it nicely, I’m good. JooAh, it’s late. Go home now.”
“Ok, ok. Oppa, however this album turns out, let’s work together. This is not a joke. Ok?”
“Ok. Go home already.”
“It’s for real. It’s a promise!!”
JooAh had a really good impression of KangYoon. There were a lot of people who praised her until now, but KangYoon was the first one to understand her so well and lead her. If it’s this person, she felt like he would give a satisfiable result, whether it was a success or a failure.
JooAh, who was waving at KangYoon, was dragged by the manager who came to pick her up and went to the dorm.
“I should leave now too.”
It was very late. KangYoon hurried home.
A new morning came.
He needed to go to work quickly, but the time when he should leave was getting delayed.
“Oppa, I’m alright so go to work.”
HeeYoon, who was undergoing dialysis while lying on the hospital bed, worried about her brother who couldn’t even go to work at the right time. However, KangYoon smiled at his sister while brushing her head.
“Today, they said to come to the hospital with a guardian. Oppa should of course come.”
“But oppa’s very busy. You came back at dawn last night.”
KangYoon brought his index finger to HeeYoon’s lips. It was an indication for HeeYoon to not speak anymore.
“Even if work is important, there is nothing as important as you, HeeYoon. You just need to get healthier, ok?”
“Ok, I’m sorry…”
“That again, I said to not say sorry, right?”
“Ok, I won’t.”
If one underwent dialysis, then s/he couldn’t move for 4~5 hours. Their face would get paler too. KangYoon’s heart would tear whenever he saw his already-pale sister in pain. However, he didn’t show his pain on the outside. Since, should HeeYoon see his pain, she would shed tears…
“Oppa, I’m sleepy. I will sleep for a bit.”
When HeeYoon fell asleep, KangYoon went to see the doctor.
“The numbers are stabilizing a lot. You’re keeping the dialysis appointment date, and above all, I think the lack of stress has contributed a lot.”
KangYoon carefully went over the graphs that the doctor showed him. It was about his sister. Although he had no medical knowledge, he could judge whether something was good or bad. He cared for HeeYoon that much.
“Please let her eat the medicine regularly, and keep the dialysis appointment dates…”
The doctor’s words weren’t that different from usual. His point was to keep eating the medicine regularly and keep the appointments. However, what was different from usual was the hope that HeeYoon was getting better. KangYoon calmed down with those words alone.
‘Don’t worry. This time, I won’t let you pass the days in vain.’
Looking at his sister’s white face, KangYoon resolved, and resolved again.
To protect HeeYoon whatever the cost.
 This is supposed to be JP. It’s probably ‘suteki’ (wonderful), I’m not sure
 Uhh… so, ‘Walkman’ and ‘Mymy’ are mobile cassette players, and ‘walkman’ and ‘work-man’ sound the same in Korean. So, yeah it’s a pun I guess…
 Unni – big sister, Oppa – big brother (not blood related)
Chapters will be out until 2.4
Thank you for reading!
Editors: Nahct (from Path of Translations, thank you, and sorry T-T)