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    The woman, with only her head and upper body briefly visible, pointed to a few cards and spoke to Chang-hyun. Chang-hyun, with a slightly startled expression, nodded his head and then nudged the apprentice Guide, as if prompting him to respond. The apprentice Guide shrugged, then clumsily gathered the cards with a trembling hand before promptly leaving his seat. He walked unsteadily as if he was very drunk.

    That was the end of the video. The victim also got up from his seat, and Gyeong Chang-hyun also disappeared from the frame.

    ‘I’m sure I’ve seen that person before.’

    Jae-chan gazed thoughtfully at the only woman left in the room and then went to find Team 1 the apprentice Guide.

    “Well. I told the police, but I was very drunk that day.”

    “Why are you so drunk?”

    “The owner held a one-hour discount event.”

    Ah. Jae-chan understood. It was an event held occasionally at the bar. Whoever the culprit was, they may have been targeting that moment when an event was taking place.

    In the end, he didn’t obtain any clear evidence, but the disappointment was temporary.

    The next evening, another news arrived. Thanks to Woo-jin, the fishing rod that was set up paid off in just a few days.

    -Target is going out. Let’s catch a taxi now.

    Gyeong Chang-hyun, who had been stuck at home due to absence from work under the guise of sick leave, went out for the first time.

    He had entrusted the tracking of Gyeong Chang-hyun to a company he found out about by asking Woo-jin. According to the follower, Jeong Yeon-oh, who paid another visit to Chang-hyun’s house today, had gone around an hour ago.

    “I will go now. Please keep following along.”

    Jae-chan, who was scheduled to work in the evening, hurriedly visited Team 2’s apprentices.

    “I’ll leave it to you while I’m gone. Pick an expensive gift card.”

    Jae-chan gathered up the long-sleeved zip-up that was stored in the cabinet and expressed his apologies to his apprentices who had readily agreed to take charge of office work. Fortunately, he had no guiding duties this evening.

    “Do not worry.”

    The apprentices responded. The apprentices had been prepared for Seon Jae-chan’s frequent absences from the office since he was assigned as their senior. Today was the first time he’d actually left his post, and he was a man known to compensate well.

    So, unlike the other apprentices who reacted casually, Nam Hae-sol was watching the senior leaving for a long time. Han Myeong-gyu, who was tall and lanky, noticed her gaze and alternated between observing her and the senior.

    Meanwhile, Jae-chan, oblivious to Hae-sol’s reaction due to his urgency, made a phone call as soon as he stepped out of the Guide office.

    “Hello. I’m looking to rent a motorcycle. 125cc or less, right now.”

    If you come quickly, I’ll pay triple the rental fee. Jae-chan’s voice continued as he put his arms into his zip-up hoodie.

    There was another person observing Jae-chan in that manner.

    In the dark gray sedan far away was Seon Eun-soo, with a particularly prominent and shiny nose bridge.

    As soon as he returned to Korea, Seon Eun-soo, who was hiding in his newly purchased car, caught a glimpse of his younger brother, who was smaller than his thumb, through the rear-view mirror. His younger brother was very sensitive, so he kept a distance from him.

    A missed call left to his younger brother was always a warning. He would be appearing in front of him sooner or later.

    He might seem calm on the outside, but he must be nervous inside. He must be anxious. It was like when he went to see him for amateurish guiding sessions in the past.

    Today, he would meet his brother. He could even hold his soft neck. Especially since Go Woo-jin wasn’t around.

    Suddenly, the bridge of his nose and cheekbones seemed to tingle as a thought occurred to him.

    He remembered the terrible experience of being strangled and beaten under Go Woo-jin’s hands at the end of last year. His younger brother’s behavior of sticking around with Go Woo-jin these days as if showing off.

    Seon Eun-soo was waiting in front of Jae-chan’s dorm the day before yesterday. However, no matter how long he waited, his younger brother, who he couldn’t even see a hair on, only showed up around lunchtime the next day. It was with Go Woo-jin.

    Knowing how sensitive the S-class Esper’s senses were, Seon Eun-soo, who could not even raise his eyes from the spot, gritted his teeth. What did he do yesterday without coming into the dorm? And why was Go Woo-jin coming in with him now?

    Seon Eun-soo, who was afraid that Go Woo-jin would notice, drove out the car and parked on the side of the road one block away.

    But the unease didn’t end there. He waited for another hour at that spot, but Go Woo-jin’s car still didn’t come out to leave.

    Bitting on his fingernails, Seon Eun-soo briefly remembered the rumor he had heard among people that Go Woo-jin was getting along quite well with his younger brother these days.

    It was obvious why the Esper and the Guide, who had become close friends, continued to be alone together.

    ‘He’s such a slvt.’

    Worried that he might be overheard by someone other than the Guide, Seon Eun-soo cursed under his breath while turning the car around.

    Back to the present, Seon Eun-soo caught sight of his younger brother waiting in front of the Guide office as if expecting something.

    Anyway, the opportunity came.

    There was no shortage of pests to interfere. It was the perfect opportunity, especially after hearing from his father that Go Woo-jin would be attending a family event today.

    Seon Eun-soo licked his lips as he watched his brother gracefully mount the motorcycle upon arrival. He felt like he could finally have fun with his younger brother for the first time in a long time. He planned to do a thorough physical examination to see what that Esper and his younger brother had been doing alone until that late hour.

    Like savoring an appetizer, Seon Eun-soo licked his lips slowly. Following the motorcycle in the distance, he gradually accelerated.

    *

    Driving his motorcycle skillfully through the traffic, Jae-chan soon caught up with the taxi that Chang-hyun was in. It was because he noticed the license plate that the follower had provided among the tangled vehicles due to the terrible traffic jam.

    This was possible because cars were moving slowly due to terrible traffic congestion. As all kinds of vehicles and city buses were tangled together, there must be a follower he has attached somewhere. Jae-chan followed closely behind Chang-hyun’s taxi.

    ‘Where is he going?’

    Why did he leave home after all this time? Was he going to find a witness? As various questions piled up in his mind, the taxi suddenly made a sharp U-turn.

    At the sudden movement, other cars honked loudly and protested. Fortunately, the taxi didn’t seem to notice that he was being followed. It seemed like he was trying to change course.

    Reacting swiftly, Jae-chan also made a U-turn. Skillfully maneuvering through the traffic, he caught up with Chang-hyun and subtly signaled to him. Just pretend it was not a big deal.

    After enduring the dreadful rush hour traffic, they arrived at a place in the middle of the city.

    ‘A hotdog shop…?’

    The place with the flashing red sign was a famous chili hotdog chain. After confirming that Chang-hyun ordered at the counter, Jae-chan parked his motorcycle in a suitable alley.

    Pulling up his hoodie to cover his face, covered his Guide uniform, and entered the shop. He didn’t take off his helmet on purpose. The customers filling the room showed no interest as if they thought this was a delivery driver.

    Gyeong Chang-hyun was sitting in the corner. He was eating the spicy hotdog just served with a high-calorie milkshake. Jae-chan looked at the guy’s profile through the helmet visor and roughly placed an order.

    Surely he didn’t come here to relieve stress with food. It was a time when Jae-chan was thinking doubtfully as he drank down the milkshake that came out quickly.

    Someone sat in front of Chang-hyun. It was a slim woman wearing a beanie.

    The moment Jae-chan saw the deep, concave facial features from close range, he realized several things. The first was that she was the woman in the CCTV footage sent by the bartender. This is the person who sat next to the victim and suddenly spoke to Chang-hyun. The second was where on earth had he seen her?

    ‘I think she was the person who sat next to Go Woo-jin on the first day of anti-terrorism training?’

    While Jae-chan speculated on the connection between Chang-hyun and the unfamiliar woman, they started arguing. Although Jae-chan couldn’t hear the contents because of the fast-tempo pop music playing in the shop, Chang-hyun’s face was gradually turning red as he spat out a few words in a harsh tone.

    And then something unexpected happened.

    Chang-hyun, who was staring at the other person, suddenly started crying on the spot. The sound was loud enough to pierce through the pounding music and reach Jae-chan’s ears.

    People around him started whispering. Perhaps conscious of the gaze, Chang-hyun pushed the tray aside and got up. He covered his eyes with both hands and ran toward the bathroom at a brisk pace. The woman in the beanie left behind had a puzzled look on her face as if wondering what had happened.

    Jae-chan, who had been idly stirring his drink with a straw, couldn’t just stand still.

    Regardless of whether it was related to the incident or simply a reaction to the woman, he felt he should go check on Chang-hyun. He stood up with a furrowed brow, grabbed some tissues from the counter, and quietly followed him into the restroom.

    As expected, Chang-hyun was sobbing loudly. Jae-chan offered him tissues.

    “Uh…”

    Sniffling, Chang-hyun stared at Jae-chan with widened eyes as Jae-chan took off his helmet. Then he suddenly contorted his face and stretched out his arms towards him.

    “Jae-chan…”

    Haa… Jae-chan sighed, holding the helmet in one arm and the crying Gyeong Chang-hyun in the other. It had been a while since Chang-hyun called him so desperately. It seemed like the first time he had seen him cry like this.

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