Magi Craft Meister 441 13 Stronghold Enhancement Arc 13-29 Struggle     “J-Jin... What are we going to do?”   Her face turned pale, Saki asked with a trembling voice.   “We...


Chapter 35

 

[The President in his inaugural address has strongly advocated Chaebol reforms by saying that ‘The Chaebols have to be streamline down to five or six core firms, in order to stay profitable.’] (EN: A chaebol is a large industrial conglomerate that is run and controlled by an owner or family in South Korea. A chaebol often consists of many diversified affiliates, controlled by an owner whose power over the group often exceeds legal authority.)

 

No matter how much the Democrat president-elect worried, the times would prove him correct. Not only Daehoo but also Daehyun and Ilsung had almost gone bankrupt more than once during the IMF crisis. The Chaebols smaller than them were already busy cutting out unnecessary fat within their infrastructure.

I read the Korean daily newspapers and global ones once I came to my office each day along with Forbes and other private newsletters.

As I mentioned before, my interventions led to some changes from the previous history.

 

  1. The global investment groups lost large amounts of money in the Asian financial crisis, and most of it entered my pockets.
  2. Korean financial and real estate markets opened to foreign countries half a year early.
  3. Jonathan became a noted name in the financial world.

 

The incident that occurred late last year filled my thoughts the most out of the changes. I had shaken the global stock market by pouring oil in the Hong Kong crisis and amplified the incident that had been called the second Black Monday in both timelines.

Until now, my interventions had not shown much on the surface, but I did not know what may be lying in wait for me. If I did not constantly check the global trends, it was possible that I may lose money. That was investing for you.

However, why had my homeroom teacher been changed to that woman? Why? I kept thinking of her face.

 

***

 

Even if my public status as minor was low, I could follow or investigate an individual. My homeroom teacher’s name was Yeonhee Woo, and she was twenty-four years old, born in Seoul, and was the oldest sister out of two brothers and two sisters. She lived in a studio located in the third story of a building near the school, and she did not have a roommate or a boyfriend. While her family was middle-class financially, her finances were neglected.

Yeonhee Woo liked sweets and did not care much about clothes or makeup despite her beauty. She did not socialize much, and I learned this much information by going through her room in her absence.

It was more like a man’s domicile than a woman’s in my eyes, as she did not have a mirror or a dressing table. Her few cosmetics stood on her computer table with a picture she had taken with her father this year. She did not have any unpaid bills, cleaned her room, and I did not see any condoms or pregnancy tests in the trash bin.

She did not list any phone numbers of her friends in the notebook next to her phone and did not pay much attention to her underwear, as she bought them in bundle packs from supermarkets.

I wanted to see her photo albums and found them on the top of her dresser. The pictures had not been placed in the album but stuck between them as if she just used the photo album book to simply store loose photos. They were not of her memories, as the pictures were of other people.

What interested me was the setting of the pictures, as it seemed that every picture was taken in secret. Therefore, the subjects were blocked by obstacles, or the focus was not right. According to the dates on the picture, she had been taking these pictures for years.

 

There were a number of pictures, and she seemed to have recorded some people each year. At the least, she did not seem to be a pervert, as she had taken pictures of faces instead of other body parts, whether the subject was male or female. It seemed that she had wanted to take pictures of their expressions, but that was strange in itself. What she did was disturbing, and was this why she was showering me with attention these days? Am I the subject of her obsession?

I placed the photos back and started to look for my pictures that would be stored somewhere. They were gathered in an envelope of photos from a photo service in her camera bag.

 

During the time which I had skipped as the tutorial, she had taken pictures at the elementary school graduation ceremony that I had previously only confirmed through my mother’s pictures. No matter how my senses had dulled in peace, I would have noticed someone’s gaze.

In early 1997, I had the stats of a professional athlete and had grown as such. I had been looking at her camera in the picture, and I did not know what had happened afterward.

I would have probably considered her trivial, as there was a crowd in the graduation ceremony, and would have thought her camera had pointed in my direction by coincidence.

 

However, the camera had taken my picture quite accurately, and she had discovered me then. There were no more pictures after the graduation ceremony, as she seemed to have discovered that I was sensitive to gazes. She had changed tactics by listing my characteristics in her notes, which was also in the camera bag.

Sometimes, the most innocuous person could be more than what meets the eye, and she was such a person. Who would have known that she was such a person? She did not even use her beauty as a weapon. It would have been more effective to pretend a coincidental meeting than using a camera in secret, no matter who the person was.

I felt somewhat sorry for my homeroom teacher, as people like her did not end well. While her beauty made her seem one of the normal people, when her mental disorder grew worse and her beauty diminished with age, she would be discovered by others.

For example…I turned my attention to her family picture, of which there was only one.

There were no other family members in the picture, and only her father stood awkwardly next to Yeonhee Woo. Her face was impassive, unlike the smiles she showed in school.

However, the fact she had placed the picture on the computer desk where she would be able to see it already spoke of her lonely future.

 

I decided to end my investigation there, as I had reached the conclusion. I thought it would be best to remain quiet until her attention shifted to someone else.

Then I found an old prescription bottle.

 

[Pyeonghwa Mental Health Clinic]

 

Of course, SSRI medicine could be prescribed for various uses, like for depression or anxiety. However, the medicine was also used for schizophrenia and megalomania. (EN: SSRI stands for Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor. SSRI antidepressants are a type of antidepressant that work by increasing levels of serotonin within the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is often referred to as the “feel good hormone”.)

 

“Wait..”

 

***

 

In the past, I had successfully infiltrated the Eight Virtue’s base and accessed their database. I had no trouble searching my homeroom teacher’s studio and the nearby mental health clinic with a flashlight and a length of bent metal wire.

Moreover, I did not need to penetrate the computer security system, as prescribing and dispensing drugs had not been computerized yet, and medical records were stored as documents in a warehouse. Even if I had to infiltrate a larger hospital, things would have been the same. My flashlight lit on the patient record of Yeonhee Woo, born in 1975.

My guess was real, and she had not come to this clinic for paranoia. Her first treatment was when she was in middle school.

 

[Illness: Integration disorder]

[Medical Opinion: This patient has difficulties in socializing, making friends, and fitting into her family due to delusions and hallucinations.]

[Treatment:

* No family history. No auditory hallucinations.

* Her hallucinations appear in sudden Korean letters (While the patient says the letters appear when she socializes with others, she is not consistent)

* Her hallucinations have much to do with concepts shown in video games.

* While she says she does not play video games, since they are becoming popular, she may have accessed them.

* Her biggest hallucination is that she argues that she can feel the emotions of other people.]

[Prescription: First, placebos for integration disorder. No effects. Second, drugs for integration disorder. No effects. Third, drugs and individual sessions. No effects. Fourth, drugs and family sessions. No effects. Fifth, SSRI intramuscular injection. Little effect. Sixth, SSRI intramuscular  injection. Some effects. Seventh, SSRI intramuscular injection. Much effect. Eighth, placebos for integration disorder. Much effect.]

 

Integration disorder was another name for schizophrenia in this era, and placebos were fake medicine used in such treatments. Her prescription record had not been changed from her eighth treatment. She had been given fake medicine and stopped a few years ago.

She had not been smart in going to the hospital and telling her family. I saw what she had gone through and the pain she must have felt. I could see that she had been given shots from her prescription records and had lied to her family when she had been nearly hospitalized.

However, they would have not been effective, as what she was seeing was real.

 

“So, I meet a pre-Awakened person like this…”

Yeonhee Woo had the traits of an empathic healer, which was one of the rarest. However, not all of the pre-Awakened were powerful, and many died or became crushed under the burden before they could build on their abilities.

I probably had not heard of Yeonhee Woo due to that, as she would have either committed suicide or died in a dungeon.

 

Edited by Userunfriendly

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