The other members, who had been waiting for Do Wook at the dormitory, were in a hurry to ask him what had happened as soon as he got back. They could have asked Oh Baek Ho about it, but hadn’t been able to work up the courage to ask him because they were afraid.
When they heard he would be working on composing a song with PD Yong Soo Chul, the members’ jaws dropped in surprise.
There was nothing to envy. The members simply shook their heads at what a different level Do Wook was at.
Afterwards, the KK members and the staff in charge of them were all busy day in and day out as they continued doing music broadcast appearances.
If you put together the 3 public broadcast networks, including the cable network’s music broadcast, there were music broadcasts every day except Monday.
Their schedule continued to be: wake up at dawn every day to get their hair done at the shop, rehearse all morning and afternoon while they were on standby, and then do the broadcast in the evening. Meanwhile, the ranking for ‘Sorry but I Love You’ was rising one step every day.
‘Sorry but I Love You’ was frequently playing on the streets, but for the members who traveled strictly to only the office, dormitory, and broadcast studio everyday, it was hard to feel the extent of the reactions. The only thing the members themselves could verify was the music chart ranking.
Sunday came around again.
It was the day of their second performance on ‘Life Song’ after finishing their debut performances at all the broadcast studios. KK shared the waiting room with other singers this time as well while they waited for their turn to perform.
Still, since it was their second time there, none of the members were as nervous as they were the first time. Kim Won was even dozing off on a chair in the corner.
“What place are we now?”
After he saw the clock hanging on the wall, Ahn Hyung Seo grabbed Cody and asked. Cody shouted to Ahn Hyung Seo, annoyed by him asking every hour.
“4th place, 4th place! I said 4th place!”
“Aren’t you happy about it nuna*? Why are you getting angry?”
(TL note: nuna is what younger males call older females. Cody is a female)
When Ahn Hyung Seo started grumbling, Park Tae Hyung, who was sitting quietly next to them and listening to the conversation, smiled lightly.
“Ahn Hyung Seo. Kang Do Wook!!!”
Oh Baek Ho, who had gone to meet with the PD in charge of Life Song, came in and called Ahn Hyung Seo and Do Wook. Ahn Hyung Seo jumped out of his seat when Oh Baek Ho called them with the overflowing-with-ki, shout-of-concentration type of voice that he often used when he’s angry or had an important message to deliver.
Do Wook, who was sitting on one side of the room thinking about the project he’s working on with Yong Soo Chul, also looked at Oh Baek Ho.
“You two need to get ready!”
And behind Oh Baek Ho, Sul Lae Im, who was known as the nation’s sweetheart and one of the MCs for Life Song, poked her head in and came inside. The members’ eyes opened wide at the sudden visit from a star whose popularity was incomparable to the current KK.
SVS Broadcast Station Life Song Meeting Room.
Once it was confirmed that the male MC who normally worked with Sul Lae Im would be absent for next week’s recording due to a sudden overseas assignment, the Life Song production team held an urgent conference.
It was like their heels were set on fire.
“If only M2M was active right now… Seo Kang Jun would have been perfect! Don’t you think it’d be perfect if we put him next to our Lae Im? Perfect!”
Life Song’s PD said, almost lamenting. Right now, it was off-season for idols and any idols worth their salt were taking a break from their activities. It would be hard to find a suitable person.
One of the writers, who had been looking through list of cast members and new male actors for the past few weeks, hesitantly asked the producer about having KK as a special MC. The response to KK’s broadcasts and how quickly their rank was rising on the music chart was surprising.
“KK? Aren’t they total noobs?”
“They are completely new, but the public response has been exceptionally good these past few days. I think they’ll make it big. I also think it’d be good to show a fresh face and get ahead of the story rather than using someone mediocre who’s not popular.”
Life Song’s producer had been observing KK’s debut performance since their rehearsal and thought they were a group whose pace and skills were good.
However, blindly putting an idol member who just debuted and whose skills as an MC hadn’t been verified at all was unheard of.
“Speaking-wise, the only thing I’ve heard them say is ‘hello, thank you’. Do you think it’d be ok to put people like that on a live broadcast? Writer Kim, this is a live broadcast, live.”
“Oh? Producer-nim*, you haven’t seen the Student Rapper video?”
(TL note: nim is used to show respect)
Another one of the writers asked the PD. She was already halfway to becoming KK’s fan because of Student Rapper.
“Student Rapper? Was there someone who appeared on Student Rapper in that team?”
“Yes, they have someone who was on Student Rapper. Also, please look at the video of that interview. That person, Kang Do Wook, was very good at speaking to the point that he would be good as a regular MC later on once he gets really popular.”
Since the writers were praising them, the PD was showing a rather positive response too. One of the writers quickly found the full version video of Do Wook’s interview on the internet and showed it to the PD.
The PD, who finished watching the video, asked right away.
“Which entertainment company are they with?”
“Ah, Manager Oh’s kids? Then they’re trustworthy. They will also be here later right? Let’s call Manager Oh as soon as he gets here and coordinate with him. Still, it’s nerve-wracking to just put one of them up there so let’s add one more talented kid as the MC too and have 3 MCs.”
“You guys call them and have them rehearse too, so there won’t be any accidents.”
And so, members of KK were chosen to be the special MC for next week’s Life Song.
When Oh Baek Ho heard this, he went with a happy heart straight to KK’s waiting room where the members were. He met Sul Lae Im in front of the waiting room.
“Su… Sul Lae Im?”
When Sul Lae Im appeared, Ahn Hyung Seo muttered her name without realizing it.
“Hello~ Nice to meet you! I enjoyed your performance last week~!”
At Sul Lae Im’s lively greeting, which felt like the laughing emoji was attached to the end of every sentence, Ahn Hyung Seo greeted her back with a puzzled expression. Park Tae Hyung, who was shy around strangers, simply smiled. The members, who had been scattered around, gathered and awkwardly greeted Sul Lae Im.
It was their first time greeting a celebrity not part of the same agency who reciprocated their greeting instead of it being one-sided. And it was Sul Lae Im, the nation’s sweetheart, no less.
Sul Lae Im was now nineteen years old. She debuted last year as the female lead in the drama, < Only One Person > with a role about school days. Even though she only appeared up to the fourth episode, she caught the attention of the viewers with her excellent tear-jerking performance.
She had a friendly image like a little sister* next door, but at the same time, she was someone whose beauty was something you could never find in your neighborhood. With a cheerful personality in real life on top of that, it was not an exaggeration to say that half of everyone in the nation, regardless of age or gender, was a fan of Sul Lae Im. From teenage school boys to men and women of all ages.
(TL note: brother/sister is not only used for blood related relatives in Korea)
‘Right now, she’s the nation’s cute little sister loved by everyone, but 10 years later, she’ll successfully have a shocking change in her acting and will even get into Cannes.’
(TL note: Referring to the film festival held in Cannes, France founded in 1946.)
Do Wook was looking at Sul Lae Im’s future. For now, she’s an MC on an entertainment show, but in just a few years, it’ll be hard to see her unless it’s a masterpiece drama or ChungMuRo*.
(TL note: Referring to ChungMuRo International Musical Film Festival.)
Oh Baek Ho explained to the members, who were bewildered by the sudden appearance of Sul Lae Im,
“Do Wook, Hyung Seo, you guys will be the special MCs for next week. You’ll be working with Ms. Lae Im here, so say hello. Lae Im, over here is Ahn Hyung Seo and this is Kang Do Wook.”
Do Wook politely bowed his head at Sul Lae Im.
Do Wook normally wore his bangs down, but he currently had his hair back for the performance.
When he greeted her with a perfect body, including his straight forehead and bridge of his nose that were both exposed and even the line that the shape of his mouth made, Sul Lae Im blushed a little. She had seen plenty of good looking people in the broadcast station, but something was different.
Do Wook had a deep vibe that was unique to him. In fact, even last time when she was observing KK’s performance from the MC seat, Sul Lae Im thought Do Wook really stood out.
“…By the way, a special MC?”
Do Wook asked Oh Baek Ho.
“Yes. It’s next week, so there won’t be much time to rehearse. Still, we thought it’d be good for you guys to get familiar with each other ahead of time so you can be in sync… Honestly, the proper thing would be for us to have gone to Ms. Lae Im’s waiting room.”
Oh Baek Ho said while walking on eggshells around Sul Lae Im.
Oh Baek Ho, who heard about the special MC from the Life Song PD, immediately consulted with the company and chose the other member to be sent as MC along with Kang Do Wook, the member the Life Song PD had chosen.
Without needing a long discussion, Ahn Hyung Seo, who had a lot of talents, was the member chosen to be the MC based on Oh Baek Ho’s opinion.
Oh Baek Ho was about to take the two of them to introduce them to Sul Lae Im but ran into her in front of the waiting room. Sul Lae Im laughed at Oh Baek Ho’s words and added,
“I had a feeling you were going to come say hi~! Rather than multiple people moving, it’s more comfortable if I move since it’s just one of me.”
Looks were one thing, but she was a truly good-natured girl. A calm smile came on everyone’s face.
“Then I look forward to working with you next week~!”
The sentiment should have been given the other way around. When Oh Baek Ho waved his hand and was about to respond, the waiting room door opened again and a man who looked tough enough to put Oh Baek Ho or Yong Soo Chul to shame entered. It was Sul Lae Im’s manager, who had come to bring her back.
“Ms. Sul Lae Im, I’m a fan! I’ll give it my all!”
Ahn Hyung Seo yelled to Sul Lae Im, who was returning with her manager and had her back turned. Jung Yoon Ki stopped Ahn Hyung Seo, saying it was embarrassing.
“Wow, angel, she’s an angel~!”
Ahn Hyung Seo was not the only one that had to be stopped. Kim Won was jumping excitedly while praising Sul Lae Im.
“Am I dreaming? I’m a huge fan of Sul Lae Im!”
“She’s prettier up close.”
Suk Ji Hoon also agreed with what Ahn Hyung Seo said. It was something even Jung Yoon Ki had no choice but to admit. Oh Baek Ho immediately put down the excited members.
It was obvious what he was going to say next. Oh Baek Ho would always say, almost like breathing, that while you’re active as an idol you had to be careful about cell phones, women, and alcohol at all times. It was a rule that was strictly applied, especially for rookie idols in particular. The members shut their mouths as soon as they heard ‘you guys!’ because they’ve heard the rest of it already.
Translator’s comments: Next week’s chapter marks the end of Volume 1! Hope you are all excited~