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This chapter is updated by Wuxia.Blog
Translated by: ShawnSuh
Edited by: SootyOwl
Coin remained silent as Isabella looked at him calmingly. Then, he raised his hand and threw the device toward the stairs that his mother had just walked down, breaking it.
“You want my manuscript?” he said aggressively, and Isabella answered calmly, “I don’t have all day.”
“Then, wait here. I’ll be back.”
“Where are you going?”
He looked up at Isabella’s question, looking all the more intimidating. He didn’t seem like a person in his mid-thirties.
“What are you, stupid?”
He was going to visit the country where Yun Woo lived.
“How are you planning on meeting with him?” she asked as her eyebrows twitched.
“I’m going to his publishing company. They’ll know me.”
“And Yun Woo agreed to this?”
“Why are you asking me?” he said annoyingly as he picked up his laptop from the bed to buy a plane ticket. Crossing her arms, Isabella added, “Because… I can get in touch with his publishing company?”
The clacking of the keyboard came to a sudden stop.
“The official event that you turned down last time we met, be there. No disappearing in the middle.”
There were conditions.
“Do you have any idea how pissed off I am right now?! I’m BURNING from within and I can’t write anything because of it! I hardly got any sleep the last several nights!” he said angrily.
Suddenly, he jumped out of his bed, standing on the empty paper cups on the floor.
“I made up my mind. No matter what happens, I’m going to sleep better than that lovely mother of mine. I’m gonna make it happen.”
‘If you want to be able to sleep so badly, then all you gotta do is write a book yourself,” she muttered internally as she listened to him intently.
“An event? OK, you got it. One condition: I have to see Yun Woo’s face. What if an eighteen year old kid is hiding behind a ghost writer? What if there’s some sort of trick involved? I’m going to get rid of every trace of him and I’ll make sure to shout out my achievement to the world.”
His voice was filled with murderous intent.
“There is no Yun Woo in this world.”
Coin was notorious for his temper, and people in the publishing industry shuddered at the sound of his name. He was also known for breaking a journalist’s nose for ridiculing his book. He had been a rookie author back then who had just published his first book. Yet, he hadn’t hesitated to act on his anger. Not only was he mischievous, but he was also eccentric. On top of that, he was violent and rough around the edges. Despite such terrible qualities, he was a rather skilled writer, and to the puzzlement of his editor, that bloodthirsty man was capable of writing the most gentle and beautiful books.
“I can’t make any promises, but I’ll do my best.”
As if putting a beast back into its cage, she closed the door on her way out and took out her phone without hesitation.
“Hello, Zelkova Publishing Company,” Nam Kyung answered the phone that rang cheerfully, and as usual, it was an inquiry about Yun Woo. “Ah, yes. He really did write it.”
With that, a sarcastic voice sounded from the receiver, “Why’s he hiding like that then? Are you telling me that he actually created all those languages on his own? He wrote all that? An eighteen-year-old kid?”
The slur in the speech indicated that the person was under the influence of alcohol.
“Yes, he wrote the book on his own. Also, if you have any questions regarding ‘The Language of God,’ you might wanna try Dong Baek Publishing Company.”
“Do you have proof!? PROVE IT!”
“Bye, bye now,” Nam Kyung said briefly and hung up the phone. He was well acquainted with calls like that, so without any trace of agitation, he picked up the manuscript on his desk. It was from an author other than Yun Woo. After all, Yun Woo wasn’t the only author who had his books published through the company. Once he checked for errors and places to edit and sent it back by email with his comments, the author wrote back with their opinion. Then, they proceeded to make the necessary changes while leaving alone what needed to be left intact.
As an editor, he had to be thorough and creative in order to produce a better product.
“Nam Kyung, I uploaded the file you were looking for in the shared folder,” a coworker said, and Nam Kyung immediately placed his hand on his mouse.
“Ugh, my shoulders. I need a break,” he said as he massaged his stiff shoulders. While on break, he logged into a bookstore’s website, which was was filled with promotional posters for various books. While there were books that made their way onto the main display rack, there were also books that were collecting dust. However, books of neither of those categories held a candle to the presence of Yun Woo’s books.
“First, ‘Language of God.’ Followed by ‘Trace of a Bird’ and ‘Sound of Wailing.'”
If he was competing in the Olympics, he would be wearing all three medals around his neck: gold, silver, and bronze. The fourth was a book by Kelley Coin from the year before. Having previously taken the number one spot consistently, Coin’s books were nowhere near as popular as they once were.
Knowing about the author’s infamous history, Nam Kyung felt slightly concerned.
“Well… I do hear from time to time that he’s mellowed out, but his record is just too… colorful.”
Despite becoming an alcoholic and then a drug addict who was also convicted of assault, Coin had the impressive record of winning four major genre novels awards simultaneously, and his profile contained his yearly record of awards. On top of that, he was active as a playwright and a screenwriter, as well as an author who wrote pure literature, essays and poems. His versatility had brought him fame, and he was recognized as one of the top authors in the world.
The Zelkova Publishing Company had been planning for a Kelley Coin collection, choosing and translating his masterpieces. They had published four books so far, and the remaining four were waiting to be translated.
As Nam Kyung clicked the cover image of Coin’s book, the author’s profile appeared.
Because of his skill as an author and disastrous personality, he had always been the recipient of praise and criticism. While there were people who bought his books without hesitation, there were also people who hated him without hesitation.
“… and that’s the kind of author Yun Woo won against.”
Although literature wasn’t about competition, Nam Kyung couldn’t help himself while looking at the numbers in front of his eyes. Sales being one of the countless standards by which an author was judged, Juho was ahead of Coin noticeably, and Nam Kyung felt proud to see the book that he had edited himself…
… as the thought that Kelley Coin might be interested in Yun Woo crossed his mind.
Feeling ecstatic about the bestsellers’ rank, he logged into a search engine and saw the list of the most searched. As he clicked one of them naturally and light-heartedly, the page showed a picture of Kelley Coin looking annoyed.
“Kelley Coin sighted in Korea?”
At that moment, his phone rang. Hoping that it wouldn’t be another drunk, he answered the phone.
“Zelkova Publishing Company.”
Then, a voice speaking in native English sounded from the receiver
A few hours before Nam Kyung answered the phone, Juho was at a bookstore, and he picked up a book from a stack placed under a banner written in large letters, ‘Kelley Coin Collection.’ They were the series of books chosen among the many books written by the author. Quite a few of those were well known, and many people would have heard of them even if they hadn’t read it themselves.
Walking past the display rack, Juho walked toward the section that was organized by the names of authors and found “Kelley Coin.” Aside from the books that were being displayed on the most visible display rack in the store, there were a slew of other books written by the author that took up three entire rows. Reaching for a book, he picked up the one titled ‘Witch Hunt.’
It was Kelley Coin’s debut title, and it was one of his least recognized books. Even with all the other books written by him, ‘Witch Hunt’ was Juho’s favorite among the bibliography that was yet to be imported.
As he opened the book, he saw a brief introduction on the author.
“Eccentric, brat, problem child.”
Most people in the publishing industry were hesitant to work with him, and the author had the power to make people exclaim whether out of love or hate. He stood out, to the say the least.
Contrary to his less than pleasant personality, his books tended to be strangely and fantastically beautiful, as if a nursery rhyme had been mixed with reality. Like thorns on roses, there was anger in the way he mocked the rest of the world with his writing.
“I heard something about his special coffee.”
Among many things, Kelley Coin was also notorious for his caffeine addiction, and the brand of coffee that he drank exclusively became well known along with his personality.
‘Coming to think of it, didn’t Seo Kwang say something about him coming to Korea?’ Juho thought as he placed the book back on the shelf.
On his way out of the bookstore, Juho heard the names “Yun Woo” and “Won Yi Young” frequently. Though he would have to try to get closer to get a better listen, Juho moved on confidently as he was well accustomed to hearing those names at that point.
“‘Language of God’ is better.”
“You’re only saying that, because you haven’t read the ‘Sound of Wailing.'”
The two women conversed as Juho walked past them, and nothing happened because nobody knew what Yun Woo or Won Yi Young looked like.
As he walked out of the bookstore, a coffee chain with a peculiar logo on its windows came into his view. Using a mythical creature, the harpy, as their logo, it was the very coffee brand that Kelley Coin loved.
Widely known as a half-woman, half-bird creature, there were many theories surrounding the harpy and its appearance. Mischievous and unpredictable, they were also known to hassle travelers, and according to a mythology, humans were warned against killing them.
As for the brand, the founder had a simple reason for choosing the mythical creature as the company’s logo, claiming that the company will never fall as long it bore the name “Harpy.” Although there was no way to prove that theory, Harpy was a widely recognized coffee chain in Europe, and it suited that troublemaker of an author, Kelley Coin.
‘Maybe it’s not a bad choice after all,’ Juho thought.
When it first opened, there was an endless line of people waiting to experience the famous coffee shop, but as always, the fever was short lived. Opening the door with the picture of a harpy, Juho walked into the shop. If Kelley Coin really was in Korea, Harpy would be his first stop.
“Not bad,” Juho said as he sipped his cup of Americano. While it was bitter, it also had a nutty fragrance. With the cup of coffee in his hand, Juho walked out of the shop and saw ducks swimming peacefully in the fountain.
Located inside a university campus, there were benches spread out in uniform distance surrounding the fountain. On the bench next to where Juho was sitting, there was an old lady who seemed to have just finished shopping. There was also a shopping mall across the campus, so it was common to see shoppers resting by the fountain. Next to her, were students working on their assignments on their laptops.
Then, Juho heard some traditional music sounding in the distance. Other students must have been performing as part of club activities. The hand gong resonated in a steady rhythm that was familiar to all Koreans. The old lady bobbed her head side to side to the rhythm, and it seemed like there could be someone dancing to it while wearing a sangmo.
(TL’s Note: “Sangmo” is a traditional Korean hat that’s worn by performers. Usually, there is a set of feathers or a long strip of paper attached to the top of it, and the wearer dances while twirling it, creating a tornado-like appearance.)
Juho took a sip of his coffee as what seemed like a duck or a goose swimmed peacefully in the fountain. It was a peaceful evening.
“Damn it. This piece of crap,” an angry voice sounded amid the noisy gongs. At that sound that was rather distant from the area, Juho looked behind him.
“Phones just can’t take a beating nowadays,” the man muttered, and Juho heard those words vividly as he saw the man’s face. It was a familiar face, and Juho knew the man. He had been looking at him even a moment ago. Eccentric. Brat. Problem child.
It was Kelley Coin, standing right before Juho’s eyes. The hand gong resonated, and a cheerful shout came from the distance.
“Where can I find some peace and quiet in this damn planet?! I swear…”
He was cursing up a storm. It had to be him.
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