Chapter 14 – Traces of Her
Ms. Kim also received a box from Jae-won, who talked nonstop, “It really has an amazing taste. The mixture of chicken and chives is fantastic.” He beamed, “Will the meeting inside take long?”
“No. It will end very soon. Mr. Seo will leave at lunch.”
The pointed words of Ms. Kim made Mr. Lee cleared his throat. The couple was willing to meet at a business meeting, but couldn’t spare time for a short lunch together.
As Ms. Kim had said, a staff member went out of the conference room, just minutes away from lunch.
Jae-won simply nodded at him, and boldly, peeped at the now open door. Inside, two people faced each other, looking at documents. It was not a romantic sight.
Who would say that they are an engaged couple?
Si-yeon’s eyes were glued on the papers she held. When she looked up and saw Jae-won, she instantly brightened up and greeted him cheerfully.
“What brings you here?”
Sitting opposite Si-yeon, Tae-jun also noticed his cousin’s arrival. He took off the glasses perched upon his aristocratic nose and rubbed the area between his eyes. Without his spectacles concealing his features, his gaze now looked sharper.
Bare face, Jae-won could finally see his sour mood. Soon, Tae-jun’s pointed gaze landed on Jae-won’s full hands.
“I brought dim sums from Seohwadang. If you haven’t taken lunch yet, let’s take one each.”
“Did you come here just to bring dim sums?”
He shook his head, “It’s Director Seo’s birthday in a few days. I went out to buy a gift and stopped by Seohwadang on my way back.”
Si-yeon perked up on her seat as she heard of this, “Oh, which made me remember–I will have to purchase a gift too. I got an expensive painting as an engagement gift, so I’ll have to reciprocate.”
Her hands dug into the bag, which still had several dim sum boxes, and gave on to Tae-jun, “Take this, Tae-jun.”
“No. It’s fine.”
Such a cold-hearted man, was the first thought that came to Jae-won’s mind as soon as he saw the scene unveil right before him.
To save Si-yeon from embarrassment, he spoke, “If you don’t have any appointments for lunch, just take one so that my efforts won’t be in vain.”
Hence, Tae-jun had no choice but to take the lunchbox. And as his habit, upon opening it, he divided the dim sum into half by his chopsticks.
“Why are you doing that? Chopping the dim sums in half when you can just swallow it whole?” Upon seeing the bizarre habit, Jae-won couldn’t help but ask.
“It’s hot.” Tae-jun inattentively responded.
Due to his body’s natural hot temperature, he hated hot food and even drank iced coffee in the middle of winter.
As soon as he did so, the tantalizing smell of chicken and chives permitted in the air. But instead of devouring the dish, a frown marred Tae-jun’s face, and he dropped his chopsticks,
Jae-won asked Tae-jun with an odd face, “Don’t you like it?”
“It’s not my type.”
“But, why did you take me there befo–” Jae-won murmured to himself and stopped, wary of Si-yeon’s presence in the room.
He knew Tae-jun liked a girl, who used to love these dim sums before. Her name was Hye-yeon Jin. What happened on his search for her?
Quick-witted, Si-yeon felt something strange immediately, so she stared at Jae-won with wide, curious eyes. In his defense, the latter quickly changed the subject and shook off his friend’s inquisitive gaze.
“Oh, about the upcoming exhibition in the lobby of Seo-in Hotel, why don’t we suggest the work of Roy Jean?”
“He is a Korean-American artist and is popular in his sculptures in America. It would be good to feature his works here in Daejin department store. I met his assistant too. It will be easy to gauge them into an agreement.”
“It’s up to you,” Tae-jun held his documents with a stoic face and stood up.
“Are you leaving?” Si-yeon questioned Tae-jun with a surprised face.
“We are done. I will send you again the draft of the plan after modifying it as you requested.” And with that, Tae-jun went out as cold as winter.
Jae-won clicked his tongue. That’s why Ms. Kim is displeased.
Fortunately, Si-yeon, the person involved, showed interest in other things instead of her uncaring fiance.
“Why ‘Roy Jean’?”
“The exhibition in the lobby of the Seo-in Hotel. Didn’t the exclusive writers of Seo-in Gallery usually do it?”
“It was a decision made from an internal meeting of the planning team. There is a rumor that the tax investigation will be reinforced, so If possible, I am planning to recruit artists from overseas. And quality-wise, I like his artwork. To add on to that, he is one of your favorite artists.”
“What’s the catch? I thought you were not interested in him. Is it because of Ms. Yuri Han?” Her eyes flashed with mischievousness.
“I know how to separate the business with pleasure,” replied Jae-won defensively.
He didn’t have the desire to tell Si-yeon that he met Yuri a while ago in Seohwadang. She would only tease him of it.
All this time, he remained curious. Did she eat the dim sums I gave her?
“Are.. are you already leaving?”
Mr. Lee, who was in the office pantry, popping one dim sum in his mouth, stood up when he saw Tae-jun coming out from the Si-yeon’s office.
“But… Jae-won came just now.”
“Should that be relevant to me?”
Mr. Lee glanced up and read the face of Ms. Kim, who was beside him. Jae-won was his cousin, and Si-yeon was his fiance. Would a little time spent with them hurt?
Indeed, the engagement was far from being romantic–it was only for the sole purpose of convenience. But, is it okay for him to let her fiance have a closer relationship with another guy, not to mention, his cousin?
Tae-jun handed over the document to him. Mr. Lee nodded to Ms. Kim and followed his boss in haste.
The two hopped on the elevator, Tae-jun pressed the basement button and thought deeply about Jin-wook’s latest report.
Her trace was still unknown. When Tae-jun was trying to find Hye-yeon Jin, he had not much idea about her. Her father was Jin Myungje, the CEO, and her brother was Jin Hyesung. She majored in sculpture from H Art university. Those were the only things that he knew.