Chapter 40 - Essence of the Test
“No, I was just thinking about how Sehun managed to keep you so far. He was quicker to concede than I had expected. I thought he’d bully you persistently for about half a year, yet he gave you the green light in two months. I don’t know why he was in such a rush.”
“I’ve never met anyone else who suited the word ‘bully’ better than Senior Attorney Kang,” Yoonshin said.
Mihee clapped enthusiastically in agreement. She laughed heartily. “He’s a character, isn’t he? He kind of looks like someone who’d be inclined to S&M.”
Yoonshin almost spilled the contents of his coffee cup. He attempted to keep a straight face and breathed evenly. He had no idea what face to make in this kind of situation. Mihee didn’t pay any mind to Yoonshin’s reaction and added, “Attorney Kang makes a lot of money, but you know, he isn’t obsessed with material wealth? Did you know that?”
“Can someone be both a high earner and not greedy for money?”
“He’s probably just taking money into account because it’s the easiest way to confirm his worth since a lawyer’s individual net value is important. But Sehun doesn’t make deals based on how much he can make. He decides based on how much it stimulates either his desire for accomplishment or his competitiveness. That’s why he especially likes taking on appeal cases.”
Yoonshin couldn’t understand this at all. “He likes appeals?”
“Yep, so when he’s drowning in consultations, he brings one of those in. He’s not in the litigation group, but it seems like he can’t give up on appeal cases. He thinks that everyone works 24 hours just like him, so the team’s seniors sometimes curse… Well, he’s pretty much asking to be insulted. Anyway, you’ll also have to do some tedious work like organizing documents for him because of that.”
“I knew he liked fighting the difficult fight, but I thought he would hate picking up things others have touched.”
“Think about it this way. There’s a charm in turning the tables where another lawyer lost in the trial. He says that’s what makes it exciting. To begin with, it’s not an easy task.”
Yoonshin pondered about it for a moment, then he answered, a bit let down. “Is it for the feeling of superiority? It suits him too well.”
“I’m just saying he’s perverted.”
“That’s exactly what I wanted to…” Yoonshin couldn’t bring himself to finish his sentence and chuckled awkwardly, and Mihee simply nodded in understanding. If Sehun made people tense, Mihee was the opposite, easing the other person’s tension—like unwinding one’s fatigue. Yoonshin felt this way since his first interview with her. That was probably why Sehun also returned to Doguk despite his many other options.
Hesitantly, Yoonshin then said, “I want to know what kind of person Attorney Kang is.”
“Sehun? He’s just as you see him—smart, talented, and handsome.”
Yoonshin was going to bounce back lightly with a joke, but then he pursed his lips.
When he heard Mihee’s comment, a certain handsome face came to mind. As if the person himself were standing before him, the image was clear and vivid.
Yoonshin wasn’t usually interested in other people’s appearances and could only clearly recall the faces of his sister, father, and close friends. He realized then—he had stolen peeks at Sehun for no particular reason and thought about him so frequently that he could easily remember the other man’s face.
Feeling a bit of anguish, he swallowed dryly and said a beat later, “I think there’s a lot more to him than that. There were parts of him that I misunderstood, and I think he’s a lot scarier than I had imagined.”
“Scary? I heard that Sehun hasn’t even shown you anything for real yet. Whatever you saw is just the tip of the iceberg.”
“See… Not too long ago, he sent me some files regarding a pro bono case I’m working on.”
He didn’t know how, but it seemed that Mihee already knew that Sehun took steps to make Yoonshin’s work easier. Her eyes gleamed with curiosity, and she leaned forward, showing how eager she was to listen. “What was in it? I heard Attorney Kang used a private investigator. I don’t know if you know, but those guys are really difficult to handle and very pricey. They also always meet at different places, so I have never seen their faces before.”
“Well, perhaps I should say that it was just a fatal weakness of a mid-sized company that looks trustworthy on the surface. I could also say that it’s a vital key to push one man and his family into an abyss in an instant.” If Yoonshin threatened to leak the information he received to the media, the opposing party would promptly retract his claim, compensate his client, and hold a press conference in apology. There was a full spectrum of everything from corruption at his company to scandalous stories about the president—it was a matter of Yoonshin choosing what to use.
He beat around the bush, but the woman sitting opposite to him seemed to get a gist of the contents of the information. Mihee looked amused, then lost in thought for a moment, she said calmly, “Sehun always seduces people with the concept of reward and punishment. He probably gave it to you because it was decent enough to give you. Use it well so that it doesn’t go to waste. It also looks like he wants to see how you use it, while you’re at it. He’s not very trusting of others.”
“You think so too, right? He gave it to me to use. I guess I’ll get in trouble if I don’t use it, huh? But the scale is too large. It’s only a mid-sized company in name, but it’s a longstanding company that most know the name of.”
“It’s a skill to cherry-pick the information and use it well.”
Yoonshin finally grasped the goal of Sehun, who designed this plan. “So this is the real test. He’s trying to see if I’m ready to dirty my hands.”
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