Instead of racking my brains to prepare for the SAT exam and the second foreign language, I should have studied business administration which I was supposed to major in.
But I failed to think that far at the time because I thought that if I scored well on the SAT exam, everything would be okay.
Never did I realize back then that such a new world like this would unfold before me.
"Hey, Juyoung, let's go eat."
"Right. It's lunchtime. What are you thinking about?"
A popular man.
I'm quite popular on campus because I belonged to a very wealthy family.
Besides, I entered Seoul National University at the top of the class.
"Well, I've got something to think about. You guys go first."
"Okay. Hey, take it easy man. You don't look so good these days."
"Hahaha, I heard you!" I said, laughing heartily at them who I made friends with after entering the university.
After letting them go first, I sat in my seat for a long time, thinking about something.
In particular, the midterm exam was just around the corner, so I was nervous.
Obviously, my secret will be revealed anyway.
'Damn it! Damn it!'
I cursed in spite of myself. At the same time, I searched for 'Forgotten Legend' on my mobile phone.
Just once. I needed just one more chance to play the game.
Then I would be able to cram all the necessary knowledge into my head.
But I couldn't find anything about the game, so I stood up helplessly to take time off from school.
I could not take the midterm exam in my current state.
I joined the army.
Given my physical build, I enlisted in the Marine Corps which was notorious for their tough military training.
Of course, I wanted to avoid reality when I decided to go to the army.
Fortunately, nobody in my family stopped me because every man born in South Korea had an obligation to go to the army. It was something they could never avoid.
In particular, people naturally paid their attention to a man like me who was born into a wealthy family, a company chairman's son.
But I had a problem. What was I going to do after I was discharged from the army?
I could not bring myself to go back to school because I had to take the midterm exam that would expose my weakness to the world.
And when I refused to go back to school, my family members including my father naturally called my motivation into question.
They were persuaded when I decided to join the army even without completing my freshman year after entering the Seoul National University business administration department at the top of the class, but I could not find any plausible excuse for not going back to school after I was discharged from the army.
As expected, my father threatened to cut off any financial assistance if I didn't go back to school immediately.
And my father carried out his threat, warning my mother, brother, and sister not to help me at all.
To be honest, I felt assured at that time because I would be better off not returning to school other than letting everybody know of my dirty secret.
Of course, I was not expelled from the house empty-handed.
My mother got me a rented one-room house near Seoul National University, hoping I could return to school someday. It was the smallest room I ever saw in my life.
The room was a mix of a kitchen, a living room, and a bedroom in one space, which I experienced for the first time in my life. And the restroom was also extremely tiny.
My mother wept, saying she was sorry because she could not find a better room.
But I told her I was fine because I knew my father was aware that she would get me a room.
But that was the Maginot Line that my father approved.
My mother brought some baggage and gave me five million won before going back.
She didn't forget to say she loved me, asking me to call her by all means once a week.
So I started my life in the so-called one-room office that I had never heard of before.
And I had to do several kinds of part-time work that I had never experienced in my life.
Three years later, a group of men, seated around a large table, were talking inside the office of the highest building in Manhattan, New York.
"They seemed to have smelled a rat in Europe and China?"
"Yes. Although they took pains to hide it, their noisy movements were spotted everywhere."
"Hm… Well, I think they concealed it for a long time," the man seated at the head table said, nodding at the brown-haired man's reply.
Then he looked at the man at the other end of the table.
"If those in Europe and China begin to move, I think people all over the world will hear about it very quickly."
"You bet. People from our Strategy Department feel the same way."
The man at the end of the table cautiously replied when the man at the head of the table spoke.
As soon as he heard his reply, the man at the head table asked back, "Then, how many have we scouted who achieved the max level?"
"Well, a total of 1,089. We hired 1,042 who reached the max level in the first closed beta, and 47 in the second closed beta."
"What about their grades?"
"Except for a few, most of them fall into the C grade. The end of the first and second closed betas meant they had to reset from the beginning, so after they reached the max level, they didn't hunt monsters anymore. Besides, they wasted the items they earned while trying to strengthen them. Most of them also removed their skills and wasted their golden rings while trying to research new skill trees."
"Whew, that's inevitable. By the way, there is a huge difference between those who achieved the max level in the first closed beta and those in the second one."
"Yes, the level of difficulty between the first and second closed beta was very big."
"Good. Let me buy that. By the way, have you still not found the man who achieved the max level in the third closed beta? Or did nobody reach the max level in the third one?" the man at the head table asked with a displeased look.
Those who achieved the max level in the first and second closed betas were very important, but the one who reached the max level in the third one was the most important one from his perspective.
As if he read the boss's displeasure, the man who just replied cleared his throat and cautiously said, "Well...there was a guy who was absorbed into hunting who achieved the maximum level easily in the second closed beta. After that, he participated in the third one, of course. But I heard that no matter how hard he hunted, he didn't go over Level 250. Besides, there was a cutoff point in the third one. In other words, those who failed to reach a certain level every day were forcibly removed from the participant pool."
"Well, taking that into account, the Strategy Department believed that nobody achieved the max level in the third closed beta."
"How about the US government and the Shaipe guys?"
"Well, I hear they haven't yet scouted the guy who achieved the max level in the third closed beta. We shared relevant information with them for the common strategic interests, but they also concluded that there was nobody who achieved the max level in the third one."
The man at the head table let out a sigh as he interlocked his fingers and rested his chin on his hands. Then he opened his mouth.
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