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Chapter 55 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

Honor is More Valuable Than Wealth (Part 4)

A month later, in the lobby of the W Tree Hotel.

A middle-aged man with a stern expression extends his hand to the receptionist and says gruffly, "Card."

"Yes, Director Park Kang-ju. Your 10 o'clock appointment with the CEO is confirmed. Here is your card key."

Director Park, receiving the card from the female employee, frowns and says, "Why not issue personal card keys for board members? Do I always have to receive a card at the lobby whenever I come?"

"I'm sorry, Director. It's a key that leads directly to the CEO's private room, so free issuance is difficult."

Director Park arches his eyebrows and glares at the employee.

"What's your name?"

"…Hyun-ju Roh, Director."

"I'll remember that."

Annoyed at the powerless employee who just handles lobby services, Director Park turns and boards the elevator leading to Min-young's room.

Upon arriving at Min-young's room after the wait, Director Park exclaims, "CEO Yoo, I'm here."

Min-young, who had been waiting for the scheduled meeting, greets him, "Welcome, Director Park. Thank you for taking the time to come."

Director Park throws the card key onto the table and sits on the sofa, saying, "I don’t understand why I was summoned this early in the morning. Even CEO Yoo shouldn’t call me at such ambiguous times for personal meetings."

Director Park shows discomfort.

Min-young's expression slightly changes at his attitude, but she quickly recovers and bows her head, "I'm well aware that it’s an imposition, Director."

"And why did you proceed with this imposition?"

"It's about the ceiling painting of the Catacomb I mentioned last time."

At the mention of the Catacomb, Director Park's face darkens. He was the one most vehemently critical of the theater business among the directors, a project that required a long time for investment recovery.

"A ceiling painting? Is there a problem? I heard it was assigned to a small company for a minor cost. Surely, you’re not saying it requires more money?"

Director Park speaks as if even the nominal fee is too much for a large hotel group like W Tree.

Min-young shakes her head and replies "No, Director."

"Director Jeong told me that you called all the board members at different times over two days, just for this ceiling painting? You made me come here at ten in the morning just for that?"

Director Park's mood worsens.

"How many times have I said it? Art is a privilege for the intellectual elite, for the few. Art only has value in the hands of those who can understand and interpret artworks without any documents. While I understand the purpose of creating a theater for the top 1%, I think it's meaningless to make such a large investment in a giant theater. Think about it, what percentage of that enormous theater do you think will be filled with an audience? Do you think there are that many in South Korea who truly understand the meaning of art? If so, let me be clear, that's a misunderstanding, a miscalculation, and arrogance."

Director Park presses on like a machine gun.

Min-young listens silently to his rant before speaking up.

"The reason I called for this meeting today was to report to the most influential directors of the W Tree board, starting with you, about the progress of the new theater's ceiling painting. There's no other intention, so please don't misunderstand."

Director Park's expression softens slightly.

He perceived Min-young's words as recognizing him as the most influential person on the board. As far as he knows, today is the first day of calling the directors, and 10 a.m. is the very first appointment.

"Well, alright."

Although pleased, Director Park decides not to show it too much and subtly shifts his gaze. Min-young checks the time and stands up.

"Let's go see it for yourself and get the report."

Honestly, he's not that curious.

In his view, the theater, already a thorn in his side, is enough to deal with; he wonders why he should care about its ceiling painting. But what can he do when the CEO personally wants to report to the most influential director?

Reluctantly, Director Park gets up and follows Min-young.

Internally, he's calculating how to relay this to Director Jeong, who's next in line, in a way that doesn't seem boastful yet subtly shows his superiority, but he doesn't show it on the outside.

On the way to the grand theater after exiting the elevator, Director Park walks through a vast plaza-style street, clicking his tongue. He considers the wasted space. He wonders if it would be better to turn this area into a parking lot and the useless theater into a concert hall that could be rented out for more than 200 days a year.

If it were up to him, the investment would be recouped in four years.

But according to CEO Yoo's plan, unless world-renowned artists perform, the theater would be empty for more than half the year, delaying the return on investment.

'She doesn't have half the business mind of her mother.'

Director Park respects Min-young's mother, Lady Kang, for her unparalleled business acumen. However, he considers Min-young still inexperienced.

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