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Chapter 22 Part 1 - The Mysterious Art Museum

A street artist's life changed when he ended up at a mysterious art museum. DBT,Korean,Novel,Translation,Art,Artist,Slice of life,Poor to Rich,Mystery

Belle Époque (1)

I was confident.

Confident that the painting I created could captivate Monica's heart.

Seeing her moved by the painting did indeed fill me with pride. But after a grueling 10-hour marathon, I was exhausted, my eyes heavy, my mind foggy.

I can't even remember how our conversation ended.

I fell asleep in the taxi Monica had called for me as soon as I got in, as soon as we started moving.

Thanks to the driver waking me up when we arrived at my place, I barely managed to get up and reach for my wallet, only to find out that MG Electronics had already covered the charge. I was grateful, but at that moment, sleep was more pressing.

I collapsed on my mattress as soon as I got home, falling asleep without even changing my clothes. I slept for a whopping 12 hours.

No morning sunlight, no sound of birds. That's impossible in a semi-basement room.

My room, where I can only tell it's daylight through the small sunbeam sneaking through the curtains.

I lay on my mattress, blinking at the ceiling.

Yesterday's events felt like a dream.

That thought made me bolt upright.

"Could it have been an actual dream?"

Recently, visiting that art gallery and experiencing such vivid dreams made me worry that yesterday might have been just another dream. Frantically, I searched around and found the bag I had taken with me yesterday.

"Could it be, could it be?"

The bag was nowhere in sight.

Could it really have been just a dream?

Then, spotting the strap of my bag peeking out beside the mattress, I pounced onto it, clutching it like prey.

Apparently, I had thrown it to the opposite side of the mattress while sleeping in my clothes.

Rapidly opening the bag, I sighed in relief and smiled.

"It wasn't a dream, haha."

Inside was the contract I had signed yesterday, carefully preserved. Even though a wrinkle wouldn't nullify it, I unfolded it as if not to allow even the slightest crease, smiling broadly.

"A signing bonus of 100 million won and a 2% incentive! Haha!"

Both the signing bonus and the incentive had doubled. Rubbing my eyes, I looked again at the amount for the signing bonus. Although a professional painter would care more about the RS (revenue sharing), for someone like me who had never even seen such a large sum, the upfront money was more thrilling.

I lay back on the mattress, laughing like a madman.

"100 million won, 100 million won."

It never gets old, no matter how many times I look at it.

I read the contract over and over again.

Then, noticing a slight misalignment in the pages, as they were stuck together, I realized there was another page. Hastily, I separated the two sheets with my fingernail.


It was an art sales contract.

Ah, I vaguely remember that too.

I quickly reviewed the sales contract.

My name and signature were in the seller's section, and Monica's in the buyer's.

The price for the painting was a whopping ten million won.

The person who bought my painting, which I used to draw for 25,000 won per portrait, had paid ten million won for it.

I recall what Monica said when buying the painting.

"I'll buy a nice frame and hang it in my office to look at every day."

The greatest compliment and joy for someone who makes a living off painting is knowing someone finds solace in viewing their work every day.

Although I was too tired to fully comprehend at the time, I had perked up at the mention of ten million won.

"But ten million is too much. You know what kind of person I am."

MG Electronics is a conglomerate with the resources to track me down in the crowded streets of Ikseon-dong.

It was only a matter of time before they learned how much I charged for a portrait and about my family's financial situation. Fearing they might later complain about the price being too high, I had tried to lower it.

But Monica just smiled and said.

"I'm in the art business, but I'm also a businesswoman, Mr. Ban."

At first, I didn't understand what she meant. She looked at me blankly and said.

"Do you know the cheapest way to buy a valuable artwork?"

"I guess at an auction or a private sale?"

Monica flicked her index finger and laughed.

"No, the cheapest way is to 'buy it today.'"

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