Chapter 27: The Calm before the Storm (2)
-The person you are calling is busy at the moment, please leave a message after the beep…
I hung up and slouched on the chair.
It was already the fourth time. For some reason, the acting lesson teacher who swore at Lee Songha was so busy that he wouldn’t answer the phone.
To be honest, my mind was a tangled mess long before this.
I blankly stared up at the ceiling.
Just what kind of conversation were they having up there?
Did Sung Dowon arrive?
How was the situation progressing?
In my head, I wanted to run up immediately, but I knew too much to do that. To be exact, I had a lot of snippets of information, but, because I wasn’t certain, I couldn’t open my mouth.
“… Let’s try to piece things together as much as I can.”
First, what I was almost certain about.
Sung Dowon attended the perverted sex party as did the married woman, and the anonymous man approached W&U through some newspaper company. The newspaper company demanded money if they wanted to quietly cover it up and W&U gave the anonymous man money to shut his mouth.
But then they said that it eventually came out in the news?
Vulgar baseless rumors started to spread and the fact that W&U tried to cover it up with money and that there was photo evidence revealing it, dropping Sung Dowon’s public image to the floor.
And not long after, the situation reversed. This was the critical point.
I could assume that everything up until now was true. As it had come directly from Director Park’s mouth.
Secondly, the information I obtained about Sung Dowon from the future with a bad signal.
The fact that his acting career might have ended after falling for ‘their trick’.
Let’s put that aside for now. As I haven’t done anything to change this future yet.
The nuance from their ‘trick’ as well as Director Park’s words about how the situation reversed. Because of this, I was suspicious that this might be a trap set up by Sung Dowon’s previous company, Pure Star Entertainment… But this was only my thought. I wasn’t certain.
It was this part that was frustrating.
If I knew who the anonymous person was I could come forward right now.
I hoped that I would see the future once again just before the incident occurred, but there were no hints of my foresight ability activating after making multiple different attempts.
What could I say at this time?
‘I think this is a trick someone cooked up to mess with Sung Dowon. I know this sounds crazy but don’t believe everything that comes up and be suspicious of the possibility of a mastermind. There’s photo evidence. Right? You have to be suspicious about that.’
I couldn’t say this. It was simply too crazy.
Above all, if this was normal, I shouldn’t know anything about this situation. If they ask me how I knew there was a photo, I had nothing to say. Even if I assumed I could get away with it by lying, I had to lie within my bounds. Lies would breed more lies and it would undoubtedly turn into a snowball effect.
Then let’s change my direction.
‘Though it might seem like it’s the worst possible situation, it’ll feel like a sudden shower once it passes. The situation will reverse soon. So there’s no need to be so worried.’
No! These were words of a crazy person! I felt like I needed to tell them to use talismans!
I was pulling my hairs, trying to come up with something.
Should I just say I have a supernatural power? Though I am worried about the consequences, this was the easiest lie.
It wasn’t a bad card. Although I would be called a crazy bastard, if the events go on like I said, I’d be reevaluated.
The lead shaman manager. Haha.
“What are you doing?”
Surprised, I turned around to see Kim Hyunjo standing there with a sunken face.
“I told you to rest today, why did you come? You don’t know when you’ll have a break after today.”
“I had something to say to the girls so I came for a moment. But chief, why are you…”
“I came here for a meeting with other chiefs, but it got pushed back. Quickly go home once you’re done. The company is a bit restless today.”
I gulped down my saliva.
“Is it because of Sung Dowon?”
Showing a surprised face, he came close to me and asked.
“How do you know that? Don’t tell me there have been articles?”
“No. I overheard some people talking about it in the elevator. But…”
The foresight I had been waiting for activated.
“About that photo evidence.”
With no time to adjust, I opened my ears wide to listen to Director Park’s words.
Considering the fact that they opened with the photo, was this a continuation from before?
“It was photoshopped.”
As expected, they did something to the photo evidence!
“While it’s true Sung Dowon attended the party, they couldn’t get a good picture. So they skillfully combined the pictures and because it was true that Sung Dowon attended the party, they realized this fact too late. Afterwards, W&U sued the newspaper company for abusing them without proper investigation. Articles were deleted and they released the truth and caused a commotion. Back then, I too received tons of angry phone calls.”
It was almost complete. Now if only I could learn who was behind all this…!
“Who was the one who created the photo and did all this?”
I wanted to kowtow in front of Reporter Song if it was possible.
“Well, it ended with… a fraudulent paparazzi created the photo and was caught trying rip money off of Sung Dowon and W&U, right?”
“That was how it ended that time.”
When my future self agreed, Reporter Song tilted her head.
“Then, are you saying the truth is… different?”
“There’s an incredible behind-the-scenes story.”
“What was it?”
“The mastermind behind all this was in fact…”
“Sung Dowon’s previous company.”
There we go!
I knew it was like that. I totally knew it!
I felt a refreshing sensation overcome me knowing that everything fell into place as I expected. It was sort of like guessing the twist of a movie long before it happened?
Didn’t this mean that even without my foresight ability my senses were quite good?
“That was Pure Star Entertainment? It’s been so long that I don’t remember too well.”
Director Park asked my future self.
It was so long ago that she didn’t remember? Pure Star Entertainment went under?
“That’s right. Pure Star.”
“That company had animosity towards Sung Dowon and W&U. So they acted that way to tarnish their image.”
“Even so, to go as far as to photoshop a photo…”
“They probably never intended on revealing the photo to the public in the beginning.”
“It was enough if Sung Dowon and W&U believed them and followed through with the deal. Sung Dowon had a sex party with a married woman? If it was a tabloid, they could have covered it up, but they even had a secret deal to try to cover it up? That’s bad. If articles came, then suspicions would become the truth and they would spread in an instant. It was quite an effective method. Even if it was revealed that the photo was photoshopped, it would have already tarnished Sung Dowon’s reputation.”
“Ah… So even if they tried to explain, it must have left an impact on Sung Dowon. Since you said he was a top star, if his popularity continued, I should know of him, but the name is unfamiliar to me. I don’t even think I’ve heard of it before…”
I came to my senses as if a light went on in my head.
Yeah, that’s right.
Everyone’s interests would be peaked if there were articles exposing a celebrity’s personal life, but there wouldn’t be much attention about an article on their explanation. Celebrities with bad rumors would come out to the public to explain, but there would still be people who believe those rumors.
It required tremendous effort to repair that tarnished image.
Then, to move this situation toward the best direction, I needed to stop it before an article comes up and before the incident becomes bigger.
When was an article going to spread?
A few days later? Or… maybe today?
“If you’re tired, quickly go home and rest. I have work to do so I’m leaving.”
I hurriedly grabbed Kim Hyunjo.
“I, about Sung Dowon’s incident.”
Kim Hyunjo looked around before saying.
“I don’t know what you’ve heard but act like you know nothing. Don’t get too interested.”
“There’s something that’s a bit fishy.”
“The manager of Lemon Girls. Pure Star Entertainment, Sung Dowon’s previous company…”
“That bastard from before? What about him? Did you meet him again?”
Though I felt sorry about using someone as an excuse… No, I wasn’t sorry. He picked a fight with me on the first shoot for Next K-Star and kept staring at me whenever I saw him afterwards.
“When that person was picking a fight, he kept acting like he would get revenge, but it didn’t seem like it was solely directed at Neptune. Do those unethical bastards at W&U teach you to do your job like that? You’ll wake up to your senses once you suffer…”
“What? He said that?”
“Now that I think about it, it seemed like he had something up his sleeves.”
I heard that real scammers mixed 90% truth and 10% lies.
Well, what could you do if the person who got picked on felt that way? Were they going to open my head and check?
My heart was beating furiously, but I tried to keep as serious of an expression as I could.
“I don’t think this is something just the two of us should know. Follow me.”
Kim Hyunjo secretly clenched a fist once before getting up.
We got on an elevator and went up. During the short time it took to get to the 6th floor, I organized what I would say. Perhaps it was because of the adrenaline, but my mind was spinning smoothly.
The elevator doors opened.