<When will you stop calling me your boss?>
<I think I’ve called you that too long to change, Jillian. Did you read the proposal?>
<I knew that would be the reason for your call.>
<It’s the long term projections section, right?>
<I thought I was going to faint. Are you sure that the planning department is not staffed by aliens? You’re not laughing, aren’t you? I am very serious now.>
<Stop right there. This is not something we can talk about on the phone, Jessica. Let’s meet up.>
<You don’t have to come back. I’ll leave tomorrow. Wait for me. Don’t go anywhere.>
Although Jessica now resided in the Isle of Man, she was an American, so this was the first time she had come to London. She took a deep breath as she saw the sign that told her she was entering the city.
It smelled like paradise to Jessica as she walked amidst the looming skyscrapers. Those in the “Know” knew that London provided astounding advantages and rights to those with cash. It was also a well-known secret that the Magna Carta listed London as an autonomous city. Even the Queen needed the Lord Mayor’s approval to visit here. (EN: Although it falls under the jurisdiction of Greater London and the GLA (Greater London Authority), the City of London has a special status: it has its own government, its own mayor and its own independent police force.)
Jillian did not take his eyes off the monitor as Jessica entered. She saw that he had not slept a wink, which had been the same for her. The long term proposal brought estimates and facts together into an expansive conclusion, culminating into a prediction of the world’s fall. According to the document, the global economy will grind to a halt. Moreover, if such a thing happened, it would be a chance for them to hit the jackpot of a lifetime. Jessica opened her mouth.
“I think the proposal is sound even if it reads like a suspense novel. The data and the estimates are too realistic. It’s written like the Investment Proposal for Russia. Who could have guessed Russia would go down like that?”
“This Investment Proposal cannot be compared with the Investment Proposal for Russia. However, that is not the reason I called you.”
“The rules are the same this time, too. If we base our investments on the proposal, we are not liable for our losses with the group funds. I don’t like that.”
“Your group deals with pensions. Also, we can decide after seeing the results of Super Tuesday.”
“Jessica, you haven’t felt it yet.”
“This proposal is making us stupid. Depending on it once was enough. If we keep doing this…””
Jillian tapped at the monitor, which showed the proposal they had been given yesterday.
“Where does it stop?”
Jillian’s guilty glance at his printer was all Jessica needed. She quickly and efficiently rummaged through the pile of printouts. She immediately spotted the “invitations”.
“Silverman? AQR? Rokos Capital? Boss, I don’t know what their offers were, but aren’t you making a mistake?”
Jessica approached Jillian as she continued to speak.
“We are given only ingredients. What we do with them is our call. Why are you so obsessed with this? Are we farmers? Do we blindly follow the almanac, planting the same crops for generations? We are chefs. We taste the atmosphere and the market, we change ingredients and spices to follow or go against the trends, we race the clock and we cook with fire.”
Jessica was standing behind Jillian now and waited for his answer. However, he remained silent as he looked at the monitor. She did feel sympathetic, as she thought she knew what he was feeling. Jessica gently put her arms around his neck and whispered.
“We are in different fields, we’re not planners. You do not need to feel defeated by the proposal’s ingenuity and sheer brilliance. It’s a masterpiece, but we do our work well, too. Without us it is just a piece of paper.”
“We’re the best in our field.”
“Quiet. Can’t you see a beautiful woman setting up a mood?”
“…When did we get here?”
“We can go farther if you want to.”
That night, Jillian covered Jessica’s sleeping form on his bed with a blanket before coming out to the living room. He opened the window to feel the rush of cold air, which cooled him down. Jillian thought for a while. He now could see that Jessica had been right. (EN: Yep, they’re together now. ^_^ )
The proposal had made predictions ranging from the next presidential election to the actions of the four major oil markets. A single person could not have done it. Tens, hundreds, possibly even thousands must have slaved over the document directly and indirectly. There must have been political experts, economic experts, experts in global trade, insiders in Washington, even military experts who worked together. To have compared himself to such a group had been foolish. (EN: ^_^ )
‘I wonder what they are doing now?’
Jillian looked up at the dark sky as if to see them in the stars.
The construction work has finished in Suwon, Incheon, Pyeongtaek, Imsil, Jinan, and Jeonju.
Yeonhee blinked her eyes as I told her my plan of conquering all of them in succession.
“It can be done.”
While I could do it alone, taking Yeonhee with me would save time, and we could share the quest points together. I needed to make her stronger if I wanted to go into an E class dungeon.
“We can gain a minimum of 4000 points to 7000 in an F class dungeon, and at an average of 5500, we can expect 33000 after going through all of them.”
Being able to do so in Korea alone was a huge advantage, and the E class dungeons could wait after this. I did not think Yeonhee realized we were monopolizing the Korean dungeons, but she seemed enthusiastic.
“I’m ready whenever you are.”
It seemed that after seeing one of the Seven Demon Kings in my memories, Yeonhee had worked hard to overcome her fear. While it was not possible to fight one of the Seven as an F class, she seemed to have arrived at a surprising conclusion. She chose to prepare as much as she could instead of running away. She was growing stronger, which was a good sign.
“We won’t meet one of the Seven in an F class dungeon, right?”
“Yes. It’s far away.”
Yeonhee often asked me this question, as my memories of the Seven were horrific. When she finally asked me how I survived meeting one, I told her that she had seen one of my prophetic dreams. She seemed to accept my excuse, as I still could not tell her I had come back in time.
“Prepare your own backpack. I will prepare mine.”
I opened the safe and gave her one of my extra items. It was the F class protective gloves, and this was the first time it was not a temporary loan.
“This is yours. While it’s worth 300 points, it may save your life.”
“Thank you. I will use it well.”
Yeonhee looked happy, and while she should desire better items now, she still stuck to the original contract. I wondered why often. Was it really because of money?
“You can change the contract if you want.”
“No. I would have sold items like these if I could.”
Yeonhee smiled like a puppy, and she seemed to have forgotten that she had been my teacher.
“Bring something you can practice speaking English with.”
“I will do so if I need to…but why?”
“We will go to America after finishing in Korea. Do you have a passport?”
“Get one. We will do a tour of all of the F class dungeons I had seen in my dreams. Do you have someone to take care of the hospital for you?”
“Yes, but how many dungeons in total?”
“Six here, four in America, ten in Japan, two in Europe. Maybe more.”
Yeonhee looked at me with surprised eyes.
“I am thinking up to thirty.”
I was counting on remembering more dungeons after we started the conquests.
“However, focus on these six now.”
If Yeonhee had mastered her skill, I might have asked her to help me recall my memories of when I had been a guild leader. I had handled dungeons below C classes in East Asia and America for profit, training my guild members, and supporting the guild. I had to gain information on dungeons we could go into and find ways to do so. The number of F class dungeons I knew of had been hundreds at the time.
“We are going to be on a tight schedule for at least half a year. You’ll need to plan around that.”
Edited by Userunfriendly