Big Life

Chapter 22: Is This the Rumored Canned Food? (6)

Chapter 22: Is This the Rumored Canned Food? (6)

“Oh? Lee Soo-Hee.”

Lee Soo-Hee smiled bashfully as she stood at the door with the sun shining brightly behind her. She was holding a bag of takeout sushi.

“I called you earlier, but you didn’t answer.”

Oh, really? I was busy working, I must have missed it.”

“I was in the area for work, so I figured I’d stop by. I guess you haven’t had any food…” Lee Soo-Hee trailed off.

Ha Jae-Gun suddenly felt like he was stuck between a rock and a hard place when he thought of the stir-fried black bean noodles Jung So-Mi had ordered earlier.

“Oh?” Lee Soo-Hee spotted a pair of pink sports shoes placed neatly by the foyer. It clearly belonged to a female.

"You have a guest?" Just as the words left Lee Soo-Hee’s mouth, Jung So-Mi appeared behind Ha Jae-Gun.

The ladies could only stare at each other blankly because Ha Jae-Gun still hadn’t introduced them to each other. Thus, they couldn’t greet each other.

Ha Jae-Gun introduced the two to each other.

"Ah, this is Ms. Jung So-Mi, my novel's editor from the publishing company I signed a contract with. And Ms. Jung So-Mi, this is Lee Soo-Hee, my university classmate…”

”She's currently working at a game development company as a department team leader, and the game scenario I'm currently writing came from her."

"Ah, I see. Hello, I'm Jung So-Mi."

"...Hello." Unlike Jung So-Mi, who gave a ninety-degree bow, Lee Soo-Hee only replied softly and nodded lightly.

"Come on in."

"Okay." Lee Soo-Hee took off her heels and entered his house.

She saw two sets of tables and laptops in the room; one was Ha Jae-Gun's, and the other was Jung So-Mi's. Reading the room's air, it seemed like it had been quite a while since they started working together here.

'Strange.' Lee Soo-Hee couldn't understand something.

Ha Jae-Gun should be working on the game scenario, so why would he be with someone else entirely unrelated to his work? Lee Soo-Hee couldn’t help but think that they were lovers rather than colleagues.

"Sit here," Ha Jae-Gun said as he opened the legs to a small decent table he retrieved from somewhere. "We actually ordered two bowls of stir-fried black bean noodles just a while ago."

"Oh, really? I shouldn't have bought these then."

"No, no. I like sushi, too. The noodles alone won't be enough for me anyway. Do you want a bowl of noodles as well? I think I can add one more to the order if I contact them right now."

"No, it's fine. I’m already full." Lee Soo-Hee lied. She originally wanted to share the sushi with Ha Jae-Gun. That was why she bought two portions. However, she lost her appetite with a third party in the mix.

"How's work coming along?"

"It's great. I think I can finish Oh Soo-Min's quests in the next two hours. I think I'm more productive with the editor keeping tabs on me "

Ha Jae-Gun chuckled as he glanced at Jung So-Mi.

Lee Soo-Hee looked at the awkward and bitterly smiling Jung So-Mi before asking, "Are you waiting for Ha Jae-Gun to complete his novel's manuscript?"

"No, I've already received the complete manuscript for his novel."

"Then, what are you doing here…?"

It was a difficult-to-answer question for Jung So-Mi, and she would definitely get stuck between a rock and a hard place if she were to answer that, so Ha Jae-Gun decided to answer on her behalf.

"I asked her to turn me into canned food."

"Turn you into canned food?"

“Yeah, I write better with an editor keeping tabs on me. Ms. Jung So-Mi came over to pass me a gift from the company, but I asked her to stay.”

Oh, I see.”

Lee Soo-Hee nodded calmly, folding in her stretched-out legs. The doubt in her mind was still there, but it would feel weird if she probed even further, so she decided to change the topic.

"Next week is Professor Han Hae-Sun's birthday celebration. Do you still remember?"

"Ah, right. It's next week already? Time really flies."

Professor Han Hae-Sun taught them the modern-day genre back in their university days. In addition to Ha Jae-Gun, his classmates also respected Professor Han Hae-Sun.

She was an admirable teacher who would often go the extra mile to make sure that her students would understand her lessons.

She would never reject students if any of them approached her with their study notes, and she would help them with corrections and explanations. Her attitude earned her the admiration and respect of many students.

"Do you want to go together? It's Saturday evening."

"Hmm? Saturday?"

"You like Professor Han, too, don't you? Let's go together and ask Jung-Jin along."

"Sure, I got it. Let's go." Ha Jae-Gun agreed readily.

However, Jung So-Mi chimed in softly, "Saturday evening…?"

"Yes, what's wrong?"

"Um… the authors’ meet is also on Saturday evening."

"Oh, really?" Ha Jae-Gun's mouth dropped. He had no idea what to say. After all, he had just declared that he would attend the authors’ meet, but it turned out to be in conflict with Professor Han Hae-Sun’s birthday celebration.

Lee Soo-Hee's eyes narrowed. A light flashed across her eyes, but she soon recovered her calm expression and spoke gently to Ha Jae-Gun.

"That authors' meet is organized by the publishing company, right? If you don't have to attend it, let's go to Professor Han's birthday party. Her birthday only happens once a year, you know."

Before Ha Jae-Gun could answer, Jung So-Mi chimed in again, "We don't organize authors' meet often as well, plus our company hopes to see Writer Ha there…”

”His attendance would definitely light the event up, considering how many great works he has produced."

Jung So-Mi was cautious in her words, but she still said everything that had to be said.

Lee Soo-Hee looked at Jung So-Mi and then raised a question, "I understand that. But aren’t there many other authors signed to a publishing company? Will there really be a problem if Jae-Gun doesn't show up?"

"That's not it. Other writers are looking forward to meeting him, especially when his works have been garnering so much attention lately."

"Well, I think it's up to Jae-Gun to choose then? I raised the birthday party first."

"Oh, my, you have no idea, but we have already agreed on his attendance at the authors' meet."

The two women exchanged words with smiles on their faces, but it seemed as if there were sparks flying in the air as their gazes met in mid-air. There was no way Ha Jae-Gun would miss the tension in the air.

'Huh? Is Ms. Jung So-Mi getting emotional as well?'

Jung So-Mi's emotions that he could feel through Rika were getting rough. The mundane spring day had suddenly turned cloudy and gloomy, and it felt as if there was a looming thunderstorm.

Ding dong!

The bell rang by the delivery man saved Ha Jae-Gun from the extremely awkward situation. Ha Jae-Gun rushed out with his wallet in hand and opened the door.

"You ordered two bowls of stir-fried black bean noodles, right?"

Ha Jae-Gun pulled out the cash and brought the food to the dining table. The atmosphere between Lee Soo-Hee and Jung So-Mi, who were looking in different directions, had turned cold.

"Ms. So-Mi, please dig in. Soo-Hee, do you want some too?"

"I'm really full. Don't worry about me and dig in."

No one spoke a word during the meal, and Lee Soo-Hee made herself a cup of coffee and drank it by the windowsill.

'Ah, my stomach’s going to hurt at this rate.'

Finishing both the stir-fried black bean noodles and the sushi portions, Ha Jae-Gun stood up and rubbed his bloated stomach. However, the large amount of food he had just eaten wasn’t the reason he felt like he would have a stomachache.

"Thank you for the food. I should get going now." Jung So-Mi stood up after finishing her meal.

Ha Jae-Gun could no longer hold her back. He put his bowl down and walked her to the door. "Thank you so much for today."

"I only did my work on the side and even got to have a delicious meal, so I should thank you instead. See you again, Writer Ha."

"Please be careful on the way back." Ha Jae-Gun sent Jung So-Mi off and closed the door behind him. Lee Soo-Hee's back was still turned on him as she had her coffee by the windowsill.

'Can I connect to Soo-Hee's emotions?'

For some reason, Ha Jae-Gun couldn't feel Lee Soo-Hee's emotions, but he thought that Rika might be the one keeping him away from Lee Soo-Hee’s emotions.

'I can't help it, then. Since I don't have much time left, I'll just have to work with what I have right now.'

Ha Jae-Gun returned to his desk and laptop and was about to start working again when a question popped into his mind. He turned to Lee Soo-Hee and cautiously asked, "Are you alright? Don't you need to head back to the office?"

"I'm a team leader. I don't have to be tied down in the office, and we don't have meetings today either." Lee Soo-Hee turned around and smiled at Ha Jae-Gun.

"I can help with your canned food situation."


"I'll keep a close eye on you until you’re done with the game scenario. Didn't you say you work better while someone is keeping tabs on you? I've said this many times, but we're on a tight schedule here."

"Ah, mm… okay."

"You don't want me here?"

"No, that's not it."

"How long do you think you will take?"

"Mm, probably three more hours." Rika leaped onto Ha Jae-Gun's lap and curled.

Ha Jae-Gun stroked Rika's neck and threw a glance at Seo Gun-Woo's ancient laptop on the old desk in the corner.

'...Could it be?!' Another sudden thought flashed across Ha Jae-Gun's mind. He actually hadn’t thought of it since he was grasping at straws the entire day trying to complete the game scenario.

Until now, Ha Jae-Gun had always thought that Seo Gun-Woo's ability was directly injected into him, but today's display of emotions through Rika was another miracle he had experienced for the first time.

It was why he couldn’t help but think—what if his ability to type ten thousand characters per hour came from that ancient laptop?

'But how could a laptop give me that kind of power? Wait, I shouldn't jump to conclusions. Everything that has happened to me so far cannot be explained by common sense at all.'

Ha Jae-Gun set his new laptop aside and turned on Seo Gun-Woo's laptop. Lee Soo-Hee watched him curiously. "Why did you change your laptop all of a sudden? It looks quite old, too."

"I think I’ll be more comfortable using something that I have been using pretty often,” Ha Jae-Gun replied in a roundabout way and opened the document on Seo Gun-Woo's laptop. Then, he started typing away on the keyboard.

He started out slow, but as time went on, the sound he was producing as he typed became akin to an automatic machine gun.

'This is it!'

His fingers were working at tremendously high speeds such that it looked like a blur.

He was sure of it now. Seo Gun-Woo's laptop was the reason he could type ten thousand characters per hour. It was entirely unrelated to the talent that had entered his mind.

"Wow…! Jae-Gun, Are you always that fast whenever you’re working?" Lee Soo-Hee's jaws dropped in astonishment.

Ha Jae-Gun was creating an original story and quest rather than copying an existing document, so it was a bit unbelievable to see him work at such high speed.

"Just wait a bit more. I should be done in an hour."


An hour later, Ha Jae-Gun was finally done with Oh Soo-Min's settings, story, dialogues, and quests.

Ha Jae-Gun stood up from his seat and said to Lee Soo-Hee, "Take a look."

Lee Soo-Hee took over the seat, half in doubt, and started reading the document. A smile slowly crept up on her face, and Ha Jae-Gun’s story soon captivated her.

It was definitely entertaining, at least in Lee Soo-Hee’s eyes.

"I like this. It's fun," Lee Soo-Hee said with her eyes fixated on the screen. "This should be enough. You're awesome. It has been a while since I personally witnessed you working, and despite working so fast just now, the quality is still…”

”Just know that I'm seeing you in a new light, Ha Jae-Gun," added Lee Soo-Hee.

"Enough with the flattery."

"I’m not flattering you. Anyway, our emergency is finally resolved, and it’s all thanks to you. Let me send this via email."

Lee Soo-Hee sent the document to her own email and stood up. Now that Ha Jae-Gun was done with his work, it was time for her to return to the office. The baton was now in her hands, after all.

As she wore her heels, Lee Soo-Hee joked, "You really don't like staying with me, huh? See how you're already here sending me off."

"Nonsense. You’re the reason why I could focus better earlier. That’s why I managed to get it done so quickly this time. You always looked after my work back in university as well, right?”

"You have always been a sweet talker. Anyway, thank you. Oh, right." Lee Soo-Hee started walking away, but before she could disappear from sight. She turned around and said, "You'll come to Professor Han's birthday party, right?"

"Ah, about that…"

"Call me then. Got it?"

Lee Soo-Hee didn't force a confirmation from Ha Jae-Gun and stopped right there. She then finally stepped into the corridor and left after seeing Ha Jae-Gun nod in response.


All alone with Rika in the apartment, Ha Jae-Gun could finally stretch his body with all his might. The nervousness in the past few hours exhausted him.

‘But I still can’t rest...’

Ha Jae-Gun’s eyes flashed. He walked toward where he had kept Seo Gun-Woo’s other belongings that came in the box. He picked up the fountain pen, the gray cup, and the brown horn-rimmed glasses.

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