TM Chapter 70

Chapter 70: The Most Important Thing in This Industry, Decision-Making (8)

TL: emptycube / ED: Isleidir


 

“Let me see.”

As soon as I received the phone, I read the headline.

Although it didn’t contain specifics, it stated that the girl group Neptune connected with Simon Lee through Next K-Star and that they were anticipating what kind of comeback Neptune, a girl group that had been accumulating the image of a talented girl group, and the star songwriter Simon Lee would make.

The source of the information came from a ‘Music World of Revenge insider’.

If I knew who that bastard was I would have ripped his mouth off.

I immediately called Kim Hyunjo.

“Chief, did you see the article with Simon Lee?”

-I just saw it. Whoever that insider is, considering he said it as if it was definitive, he doesn’t seem like he’s an insider on our side. Gunyoung says that someone might have overheard Simon Lee and him talking at the Next K-Star set.

I abruptly recalled today’s events as well as the look the traitor gave me.

That moment, a suspicion that the Music World of Revenge insider might be related to the traitor crossed my mind since he would want Simon Lee’s song to become the title track. If he leaked this to the press first, then the company would have no choice but to consider Simon Lee’s position as well.

-From what Younghoon hyung says, it seems we will hold an internal staff meeting tomorrow with the A&R team{1} and decide as quickly as possible. If we tried to drag it on and revise the story, then Simon Lee, who has actively gotten involved, might feel weird.

Then Simon Lee’s song becoming the title track was only a matter of time.

“Will this affect our double title track strategy?”

I perked my ears and looked at the rear-view mirror.

My gaze met with Lee Taehee’s in the mirror. Unlike me, whose expression was stiff with anxiety, she gave me a calm look.

-I already told Younghoon hyung that you passionately pushed Taehee’s song as part of double title tracks. You already have a past record of pushing Cat Guardian Ghost and getting good results. Either way, it won’t take long so just wait a little.

As soon as I hung up the phone, Im Seoyoung asked as if she’d been waiting.

“Oppa, we might go with double title tracks? You’re talking about the song Taehee unni made, right?”

“It’s not for certain. I’ll let you know when things are decided.”

I left it at that and parked the van at their residence.

Im Seoyoung and LJ rushed out, and Lee Songha, who kept giving me a worried look, seemingly finding my expression serious, said goodbye and left.

Now, only Lee Taehee remained.

“Unni, what are you doing? Aren’t you coming?”

“You go first. I have something to say before I go in.”

Lee Taehee said, looking in my direction. The girls revealed suspicious expression but nodded their heads without probing further. Only after the two girls dragged the slow-walking Lee Songha did Lee Taehee open her mouth.

“Sorry for today. We suddenly made work for you when you should have been resting.”

“Huh? It’s nothing. You girls must have been shocked.”

I had forgotten what had happened just a while ago because I caught up thinking about the article.

“I should have been more careful, but it seems I was caught up in the mood. It was the first time so many people recognized and approached us out on the streets as well as said that we were Neptune.”

Lee Taehee’s lips rose into a gentle smile as if she was recalling the events.

Looking back at me, Lee Taehee continued,

“I wish that people will call us Neptune for a long time. For that, the next album needs to do well. I don’t have any other desires. So if you are pushing double title tracks for me, you don’t have to.”

“What?”

“I heard what Hyunjo oppa said.”

When I looked back at her, Lee Taehee was smiling beneath the dim lights.

“I will be happy if the song I made was even put in the album. Even if it doesn’t become a title track, I won’t be so disappointed that I’ll fall into a hole of despair or become an alcoholic or anything like that.”

She said, mixing in a joke with her gentle voice.

With complicated thoughts, I replied,

“It’s not like that. To me, your song is better than Simon Lee’s.”

“… I thought that you said that simply as a compliment last time.”

Her slender eyes closed slightly.

“Thank you. For thinking of it like that.”

If I could, I wanted to tell her.

I wanted to tell her that, in the future I saw, Lee Taehee’s song was the song that represented Neptune.

If I hadn’t changed the present and, through this, the traitor didn’t bring Simon Lee’s song over, she would have encountered this future without any problems.

When I thought this, I resolved myself that I would do whatever I could to correct this path that had gone awry.

 

When the day brightened, I headed to work with a combatant mindset.

Then, as soon as the team 3 leader arrived at work, I stuck next to him.

If I tried to persuade staff members who I wasn’t really familiar with, I felt like they would call me crazy and beat me up so I decided that completely persuading the team 3 leader was the best I could do.

There was the thing with Cat Guardian Ghost as well. If the team 3 leader thought that my senses were decent, he wouldn’t completely disregard my words.

“Team leader, no matter how much I think about it, I think now’s the best time to release Taehee’s song. If we push double title tracks with Taehee’s song, when they go on entertainment shows with Simon Lee, it can help support a more singer-songwriter, artist-like image. It’ll really nail in their image as a talented girl group…”

I spilled everything I had thought of all last night. The team 3 leader, who had been listening with a tired expression for a while, waved his hand. Then he crossed his arms and said,

“Now, really. Do you really like that song that much?”

“Yes. Not just me, the other girls really like it too. Especially Songha, she said that the song felt like it was Neptune’s and that she felt she could sing it well.”

I even tried persuading him by bringing in Neptune and Lee Songha.

The team 3 leader scratched his patchy beard.

“Okay, I got it. Last time, you were obsessed with Cat Guardian Ghost, and this time, it’s Taehee’s song. I also feel like I shouldn’t ignore your words because of last time.”

“I really think it can be successful.”

“I’ll try to push for double title tracks as much as I can. But if the other staff members’ opinions are different, then there’s nothing I can do.”

 

I sat on a terrace from where the meeting room could be seen and stared at the meeting room door.

I kept thinking about it in my head. If the results of the meeting weren’t good, what would I have to do?

I thought of all sorts of crazy things.

Should I really act like a shaman? I even thought about telling people that I sensed that Lee Taehee’s song would be a hit, very seriously. I didn’t know how far rumors about me would spread, but there might be a staff member, like the team 3 leader, who felt like they shouldn’t ignore my words.

I pressed hard on my temples.

I felt that I, in my current position as a manager who had only been working for a few months, was powerless. If I stood in a position where I could choose and decide on everything, I wouldn’t have to agonize over this so much.

While I was still immersed in my thoughts,

“It looks like you’re still thinking about Taehee’s song.”

I suddenly heard a voice. The traitor was sitting in the chair across from me.

My mind was already complicated, but when I saw the traitor’s leisurely face, my mood hit rock bottom. Why did his face look even better than yesterday? Well, of course, it did. Due to the article published yesterday, Simon Lee’s song being the title track was pretty much set in stone.

A sudden question crossed my mind.

The future where the traitor pushed and succeeded in making Lee Taehee’s song a title track.

Was Lee Taehee’s song part of the double title tracks in that future?

The traitor continued.

“I don’t understand why you insist on pushing for double title tracks.”

“Her song’s good. There are a lot of singers who put out double or even triple title tracks if the songs are good.”

I replied while brushed my tangled hair.

The traitor revealed a strange expression before shrugging his shoulders.

“I don’t know about that. I think it’s better to push one that is certain to succeed. It’s better to focus our energy into one. If we took a risk and it fails, then they both might end up with mediocre results.”

“One that is certain to succeed?”

“I think that Simon Lee’s song will become Neptune’s first hit track. Also…”

After pausing for a bit, he continued,

“I think that my senses are right this time.”

The traitor gave me a bright smile.

That moment, I had a sudden urge to wipe his face from my sight.

 

How long had I waited?

The door to the meeting room opened. The staff members who had attended the meeting bustled out. I shot up and approached the team 3 leader. The team 3 leader, who had been scratching the back of his neck, clicked his tongue when he saw me.

Damn it. It didn’t end well.

“Everyone agreed that Taehee’s song was good.”

The team 3 leader said while patting my shoulder.

“But an article that we were working with Simon Lee had already been published, and they asked why we should insist on dividing the public’s attention with double title tracks when we already had a song that would be a hot topic. That’s why the meeting leaned towards the opinion of putting Taehee’s song on their next album. There was nothing I could do.”

There was no other way using normal means.

Just as I thought that I only had crazy options left, the team 3 leader mumbled,

“Unless the CEO tells us to go with double title tracks.”

“The CEO?”

When I turned my head and asked, the team 3 leader licked his lips and nodded.

“Since they say the CEO arrived not too long ago, it’ll be decided once I tell him and he makes the final decision. But it’ll probably end up like that. Like Blackout’s album and Neptune’s last album, he usually leaves it up to the staff.”

CEO Baek Hansung’s face crossed my mind.

Then I also recalled how he had personally called me. He had suddenly asked whether I thought Cat Guardian Ghost would do well in China. He had also said previously that he had to keep lucky people close.

Maybe, just maybe, if he saw me before he made the final decision on Neptune’s next album, he might ask me for my opinion this time as well.

Also, one more thing.

I also recalled him saying that he would do something for me if Cat Guardian Ghost became successful. Since I was gnashing my teeth at Son Chaeyoung and Teacher Shim Kyungtaek that time, I had told him that I hoped Son Chaeyoung would pay the appropriate price for her deeds.

However, the current situation was more important than that.

I swallowed my saliva and said,

“Team leader. Could I come with you when you go to the CEO’s office?”

“Don’t tell me you want to…”

The team 3 leader glanced at me, seemingly at loss for words, before slapping my back.

“You’re a troublesome guy. Have you become so daring after entering the CEO’s office a few times? Is the CEO your friend? No way!”

“I’ll keep my mouth shut and simply stand behind you.”

“I said no!”

He wouldn’t budge.

The team 3 leader shook his head and disappeared towards the sixth floor by himself.

Of course, it wasn’t like I didn’t understand him. If I was him, I too would have wondered just where this crazy guy came from. However, even if it was crazy, I had no choice but to do it if it could possibly connect the present to the future I saw.

After thinking for a long while, I took out my phone.

I found the phone number I had saved previously.

It was a phone number that had called me once. It was CEO Baek Hansung’s personal number.

*

CEO Baek Hansung gazed at the synopsis on his desk with a strange look.

It was the early synopsis of Cat Guardian Ghost.

“Does this look like a drama that will be successful?”

At his question, the director who had been drinking black tea on the sofa shook his head.

“Just looking at the synopsis, it looks like a project from a newly founded production company. Well, if the script and the characters weren’t okay, I couldn’t have even suggested Jijoon do it at all. Also, to be honest, I thought that their target ratings would be 5% after reading the script.”

“Just what did he see in this?”

CEO Baek Hansung mumbled with interest.

Just then, accompanied by a knock, the team 3 leader entered the CEO’s office.

“CEO, the staff meeting regarding Neptune’s next album title track has ended just now.”

“Hmm, okay.”

“There was a lot of talk about what sort of strategy we should take with Simon Lee’s song and Lee Taehee’s song, but the opinion that we go with Simon Lee’s song as the title track this time was-”

“What was Jung Sunwoo’s opinion?”

CEO Baek Hansung abruptly asked.

The team 3 leader blinked.

“… Pardon?”

After tapping his desk a few times with his fingers, CEO Baek Hansung asked once more,

“Jung Sunwoo. I’m curious what he chose.”

 

 


{1} Artists and Repertoire Team – Responsible for scouting talents and overseeing the development of recording artists and songwriters (Wikipedia)

 

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Comments 10

  1. Pulling the favor to promote the girls instead of aiding in Son Chaeyoung’s downfall. He’s become a fine manager for Neptune.
    Thanks for the new chapter!

  2. thank you for the chapter~ huh….my hatred toward the traitor are so high that i which to turn him into mince meat…i dont even remember his name..

  3. CEO save us please! It’s a first to see a CEO not an asshat or the (female – or male, I don’t judge) lead’s romantic partner.

    #PetitionToReleaseTaehee’sSong

    Thanks for the chapter, emptycube! 🙂

  4. Yeah the CEO is right,the mc is fishy like hell^^
    I too would be interested.
    Also,I still support choi gunyoung here but I don’t wanna see the girls failing at this juncture of their life so…I’m conflicted

  5. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

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