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This chapter is updated by Wuxia.Blog
Translated by: ShawnSuh
Edited by: SootyOwl
“… What was that?”
“They were exactly alike, down to a tee,” Juho reiterated in a friendly manner.
The air grew heavy with silence, and both Nam Kyung and Nabi stiffened up. Yun Woo himself was claiming that another person’s work looked exactly identical to his own.
Coming to his senses, Nam Kyung asked again in a hurry, “In what way? The style? The plot development? The content?”
“Something more… fundamental.”
“We’re not talking about plagiarism here, are we?” Nabi asked, wearing a serious look.
“No, not at all.”
“Of course. We wouldn’t be here right now otherwise.”
“Then, what is it? Are you saying that there’s another person who’s replicating your writing down to a tee? How’s that possible? And what do you mean by fundamental?”
Nam Kyung and Nabi looked at Juho with a perplexed look.
Quietly fiddling with his cup, Juho said, “I, too, believe that my style is not easy to replicate. It’d take a considerable effort,” and held his cup tighter, crumpling it. “But there is one possible scenario.”
Nam Kyung resolved to confront his coworker as soon as he returned to his office. How could he be so naive in praising an author who might have plagiarized another?
‘No, this isn’t his fault. An author’s point of view is different from that of a reader. An author is much more sensitive. It’s possible that it’s something only visible to him. I can’t think clearly in a state like this. I gotta go read this book myself,’ Nam Kyung thought to himself.
At that moment, Juho added, “If I wrote it.”
He said that as he folded the cup in half and placed it on the table. He flicked it, and it wobbled about as if it would tip over. Although it took on a different shape, the fact that it was a paper cup remained intact.
“… Pardon?” Nabi asked on behalf of Nam Kyung who was frozen still.
“I wrote it.”
“… I’m sorry, what?” Nabi asked again, and Juho laughed quietly, adding weight to his words.
“I’m Won Yi Young.”
A shocked expression slowly appeared on Nam Kyung’s and Nabi’s faces.
“Wait, hold on a second! What?! I mean… What!?”
A wave of information flooded Nabi’s head. ‘Yun Woo is Won Yi Young, and he wrote a book under that name. Juho is both Yun Woo and Won Yi.’
She felt her emotions escalate. Won Yi Young’s book was being received as…
“Uh… Would you mind if I made a quick trip to the bookstore?”
“Not one bit.”
Leaving Nabi on her own as she sprung up from her seat excitedly, Nam Kyung opened his mouth and asked, “You’re Won Yi Young?”
Nam Kyung felt dumbfounded by the brief answer. He felt all the clues regarding the author untangling all of a sudden. A genius and another genius. The two had been the same all along.
“My goodness,” his quiet exclamation echoed throughout the garden. Yun Woo had been the very author who had shocked readers and experts alike with the literary value of his works. In most cases, people who hurled harsh criticisms tended to be either jealous of him or fell into the category of conspiracy theorists. Yet…
“A genre novel this time?”
“I thought I would give it a try.”
Fixing his eyes on Juho, Nam Kyung rose from his seat slowly.
“Please come with me…”
… to the bookstore. Nam Kyung had just realized that he was standing in the eye of the storm itself.
Waking up, Juho checked the time as he rubbed his tired eyes. It was morning. Thankfully, he had the luxury to sleep in since school was on break. Having written well into the night, he was rather sleepy. Following his instincts, he closed his eyes.
The room was silent, so falling back asleep wasn’t all that difficult. His consciousness faded slowly as darkness creeped in.
“Juho. Juho Woo.”
Right as he was about to fall asleep, Juho opened his eyes at the door flinging open. It was hard to see. A voice urged him as he lay still on the bed.
“Mom,” he answered in a hoarse voice.
It wasn’t usual for his mother to wake him up like that. While she had been letting him sleep in knowing that her son wrote into the night regularly, the fact that she was waking him up deliberately meant that she had something to show him. After opening the window for ventilation, she rushed out of the room. A cold breeze rushed into the room and ruffled through his hair.
‘It’s getting cold,’ he thought.
Since it was no longer possible to go back to sleep, Juho stumbled his way toward the living room.
“Look!” his mother said brightly as she stood in front of the large window, holding a cup in her hands. Juho shivered from the icy, cold breeze sweeping in from the window that was wide open. Still, he stood firmly in his place.
“It’s snowing!” Juho said as he saw the white particles falling from the sky. The white background was telling him that it had been snowing for some time. Everything was white.
“It’s been snowing since last night. I don’t think it’ll stop anytime soon,” his mother said, and made her way to the kitchen to prepare breakfast. That was her reason for waking Juho up. Feeling the refreshing breeze, Juho stood quietly and stared out at the snow as he breathed out white steam. With the news anchor’s voice delivering various news in the background, he stood there, looking out the window peacefully.
“I’m sure everyone’s heard of this name at some point. He’s widely known as the genius who debuted as an author at the age of sixteen. Here’s the news on Yun Woo.”
With that, Juho turned his head toward the source of the sound.
“Juho! You’re on the news!” his mother said as she rushed toward the living room.
‘Something tells me that something similar had happened in the past,’ Juho thought as he slid the window shut and made his way toward the couch. The morning news was on.
Rubbing his cold cheek, he leaned back on the couch.
“Let’s hear from our reporters,” the anchor said. The word ‘Yun Woo fever’ in the upper left corner of the screen came into his view. Still feeling half asleep, Juho stared dazedly at the screen as it changed to the view of a bookstore. Unlike usual, everything in the store was written in English, and a blond-haired man was examining the books. It was a bookstore overseas.
Then, the screen changed yet again to a reporter’s interview on Yun Woo.
“Do you know an author by the name of ‘Yun Woo?'”
“Why, yes I do. He’s rather famous.”
“Have you ever read his books?”
“I’ve read ‘The Sound of Wailing,’ and I loved every bit of it. I was astonished that such a young author was capable of writing with such depth.”
With that, the reporter moved onto an African American woman, asking her similar questions. At the name “Yun Woo,” she raised her thin eyebrows and nodded enthusiastically to show that she knew him.
“I’ve read both of his books! I loved ‘Trace of a Bird’ especially. It was my first time reading a Korean novel, so there were definitely places where it felt somewhat unfamiliar to me, but it was hardly an issue. His book touched the hearts of many, and I’m one of them.”
Then, the same question was asked to a man pushing a stroller, walking alongside his young daughter.
“I just bought a copy of Yun Woo’s book, actually. It was recommended to me by the people around me, so I wanted to take a look. I gotta say, I like the cover design,” he said as he took the book out. It was odd to see the book’s title written in English. The cover design was also entirely different. With that, the screen quickly transitioned to the view of a building, and the reporter went on to talk about the Fernand Publishing Company and its long, prestigious traditions.
“Now, we’ll be interviewing the senior editor of Fernand, Adam.”
Following the reporter’s introduction, Adam’s face appeared immediately on the screen. His spiky hair and confident look left a strong impression.
With the reporter’s question, he went on to give an answer. “Yun Woo is an outstanding writer. Not only is his style incredibly delicate, but it’s also quite sensitive. It’s very apparent in his writing. I chose his books based solely on his writing, and I’m sure that you know better than me that I’ve made the right choice.”
With that, the reporter moved on to asking about the newly published book, ‘The Sound of Wailing.’ With big motions, he answered, “First of all, I thought that it was quite different from his debut title. It was astonishing how he was able to display his vast potential a mere two books. It’s as if he’s showing that he’s capable of performing in any given environment, whether it’s in the streets or in an orchestra.”
As Juho yawned while watching, the reporter in the screen asked Adam about the professor who had openly criticized Yun Woo and his book, ‘Trace of a Bird,’ to which he answered mockingly:
“I’m sure she’s always been an excellent student, throughout her entire school career, the kind who likes to follow the rules and is willing to do anything at the command of her teacher. As most students of her kind tend to be, I suspect that she was in the habit of writing in her journal everyday. It’s apparent in the way that she’s viewing Yun Woo’s book: the journal of a juvenile whose life is filled with joy and sorrow.”
It was a rather cynical remark. While the translation appeared as subtitles on screen, they were watered down significantly from what Juho was actually hearing. With that, the screen transitioned back to the bookstore.
“We look forward to this young prodigy’s journey into the future as he reaches out to the world at the mere age of sixteen,” the reporter concluded her segment, and the news anchor reappeared on the screen, delivering the following news about the rising popularity of Korean novels.
“Son, what would you like for breakfast?” Juho’s mother asked cheerfully.
She seemed to be in a good mood. After pondering briefly, Juho answered, “Anything.”
“I don’t know how to make that.”
“Then, anything tasty.”
“All the food I make is tasty.”
They conversed as usual. No matter how chaotic the world around them was, their conversations remained and always would remain the same in the same place. It was one of the few elements in his life that was both stable and comforting.
As he had always done, Juho went back to his room after the meal and turned his computer on to write. Before him was three volumes worth of manuscript for ‘The Language of God,’ nearly finished.
Since revealing his identity as Yun Woo to his clubmates, he had been writing without the hindrance of having to be conscious of others. Because of that, he had been able to work at a much faster pace. Needless to say, the school was on a break.
The story in his head became a reality the moment he moved his hands, and he always wished for that joy he felt as a writer to translate directly to the readers.
“Although it’s easier said than done, of course.”
He wrote on a piece of paper that was as white as snow. He had been recently informed by Jang Mi that the company was experiencing an endless chain of inquiries about the next volume of ‘The Language of God.’
Things were quite hectic at the Dong Baek Publishing Company. The title of “best-seller” tended to elevate the book to a position where it was most visible to people, and as people chose the book that was the most visible to them, the book became even more of a best-seller.
With the positive image that came from word of mouth, ‘The Language of God’ began to solidify its place as the best selling genre novel.
After that, Juho sent the completed manuscript to the publishing company, and the third volume was published as the break approached its end. As readers were made exuberant by the rate at which the series was being published, the ‘Language of God’ reached top three in the bestsellers list.
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