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Chapter 66 Part 2 - 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

As Youngju brings over snacks, she pulls a chair next to me and sits down.

"Tell me more about Irina. What did you have for dinner?"


"Wow, you went to a tripe restaurant with a Polish pianist?"

"It was Monica's idea; she insisted on it."

"Does Monica really like tripe that much?"

"Don't even start, she's now into tripe's lining too."

"Wow. What about Irina? Did she not throw up after eating it?"

I chuckle and reply.

"She even scraped clean the fried rice with kimchi. I heard Polish people eat offal dishes too?"

"Wow! How did the tripe look when eaten by a goddess? Did it shine or transform into snowflakes or something?"

"Are you crazy?"

"No, why?"

Are you seriously asking that, or just kidding?

"Irina is a pianist, not an alchemist, right? She just ate well and left."

"Did she seem to enjoy it?"

"Yeah, she ate quietly, not saying a word."

"That's exactly her image."

"It was uncomfortable being with her, so quiet. It would have been really awkward without Monica."

"That's Irina for you. She's always been like that."

"But why does she only play Chopin?"

"Don't you know?"

"Hey, I only learned her name because of you."

"An ignorant beast you are."

"Just explain it to me."

Youngju pauses for a moment, then speaks with a serious look in her eyes.

"Irina is an orphan."

What? Really?

Isn't it true that to become a world-class pianist, you need early specialized education and expensive lessons from a young age? She looks so noble, like she comes from an aristocratic family. Was she really an orphan? Is that even possible?

Honestly, it's hard to say this, but art requires money.

Being a star in popular culture, where one can become an overnight sensation, is different from pure art. It takes a lot of time and a tremendous amount of money to start earning from actual art. It's a harsh truth, but art comes from capital.

Orphans don't have money.

Therefore, it's tough to survive in the pure arts industry, especially music. Classical instruments are expensive, and so are lesson fees, which are beyond imagination.

Seeing my surprise, Youngju gives me a thumbs up, as if she expected it.

"That's why Irina is remarkable, isn't she? She's the hope for all the poor in the world."

If that's true, that alone makes her a person worthy of respect.

Complaining about her being a bit aloof and cold seems like a petty thing to do.

Suddenly, I see Irina in a new light. If I had known this from the start, I would have treated her more kindly.

Regretting today's event, I ask.

"But how did she start playing the piano? And what does being an orphan have to do with only playing Chopin's music?"

Youngju snaps her fingers and says.

"Irina has been living in an orphanage attached to a church since she was a baby. She had this dream when she was four."

A dream? Maybe because it's something we have in common, I suddenly become curious.

"What kind of dream?"

Youngju's eyes lose focus as if she's dreaming herself.

"A very dark night. The sound of a piano echoing in the church. A girl in pajamas drawn by the piano sound on a night when everyone is asleep, going to the church. The sound of Chopin's music filling the empty chapel."

That's kind of scary, isn't it?


Youngju's expression suddenly turns sour.

"A horror movie?"

"Well, you said there was piano music in an empty chapel. Isn't that like objects moving on their own?"

"Shut up, you mood-killer."

"Then what is it?"

Youngju looks almost offended, like a believer whose faith has been insulted, and says,

"It's from an interview with the German music magazine Klassick in 2015. Irina said this at that time."

Youngju puts her hands together as if praying and recites Irina's interview.

The windows of the church.

The moonlight through the mosaic coloring countless lights,

The starlight projecting the shapes of heaven,

Mixing majestically and mysteriously at night.

Someone called me to the chapel.

It wasn't in any language,

But I clearly felt it.

He was calling me.

His call was calm, radiant, and beautiful.

His call was calm, bright, and beautiful.

Looking back, that was the memory

Of the piano sounds the priest played on days without mass.

It seemed to be that.

A baby in pajamas, toddling through the too vast and desolate church corridor.

When I opened the door to the chapel.

I found the salvation I'd longed for all my life.

Not a cross, but salvation through music.

And soon after, I realized.

The one who called me in the darkness was Chopin.

The one who extended a hand of salvation to me.

Youngju exhales as if she's just had a drink of soju.

"Wow, isn't that amazing?"

Yeah, even I think that’s a pretty cool story.

"So she only performs Chopin?"

Youngju shakes her head.

"You can't say Irina only performs Chopin."

"What do you mean?"

"She doesn’t just play Chopin; through the piano, she sends her lifelong admiration and praise for him."

Sending lifelong admiration and praise to the one who saved her from hopelessness. That's why Irina only performs concerts with Chopin’s music.

Just like someone spends their lifetime praying to God,

She sends her lifetime of prayers and praises to her savior.

"Hmm, that's kind of cool?"

Youngju gives a thumbs-up and gestures with her eyes.

"Welcome to the Church of Irina, comrade!"

Forget that, put it away.

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