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Past Life Returner 7

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The darkened world became bright and faint noises became clear at once. I knew where I was the moment my vision cleared, and I was in a classroom. A young male teacher was teaching English in front of young students. I held a mechanical pencil in my hand, and an incomplete scribble was drawn on my notebook.

I saw that my English textbook was for middle school first graders. I was sitting alone near the window at the back of the classroom. I had always sat in the middle when I had been a student, and the past had been slightly changed.

 

“Status Window.”

 

[Name: Sunhoo Na. Health: F (2) Strength: F (20) Agility: F (13) Perception: F (20) Accumulated Points: 87. Properties (1)]

 

I had F class on all my stats. While a person with these stats would be considered an ordinary person after the Day of Reckoning, it was not bad at all by current standards. My body was that of an average adult male, and my strength and perception were above some athletes.

The stats I had increased during the tutorial must have affected the time I skipped. The past had changed. My arm was long and full of hard muscles way above the middle school level, and I could feel the power in my biceps and fascia.

I was clenching my fist when my eyes fell on the scribble in my notebook. I had thought that I, as an ordinary middle school student, had merely been passing the time, but the drawing depicted an F class monster. The monster was a beast type and one that walked on two legs. Its Identification number was KF-07, and the number was clearly written in the upper part of the note in a messy scribble that looked like mine. K was for Korea, F was the monster’s level, and 07 was an arbitrarily given numeric identifier. Actually, Korean awakened called them ‘Guard Dogs.’

I thought of something, and it proved to be true. The previous page of the notebook I flipped back noted an address of a mountain in the Gyeonggi Province and its price.

 

***

 

I guessed that I had lived the life of a returner during the skipped time, and that was why I had trained and prepared to conquer an F class dungeon. I would first have to buy the lands where the dungeon lay before releasing its seal. I ran home right after the classes ended, and our family lived in the Miari area at this time.

The house was as I remembered, and the key was in the milk basket. I opened the locked door and managed to remember that Mother had been working at the local curtain shop around this period.

I was much too excited about finding out how much I had been preparing during the skipped period to think more about my childhood memories.

A picture that looked like it was taken at my elementary graduation ceremony last year was framed in the living room. I was already completely grown by this time, and it would be credible to believe that this picture was for someone  graduating high school.

I was relieved to see that my parents looked happy in the picture. As I entered my room, I saw that it was definitely not one for a teenager. Even if I did not remember how my room had been in middle school, it was evident that the room was different from my past life.

The blankets were folded with military precision by me, and my desk didn’t have  a speck of dust. I searched my room everywhere and looked wherever I would hide something like zip drives and floppy disks. (EN: Remember, this was the ‘90s)

However, it seemed that my physical growth and my changed relationship with other students due to the former seemed to have been all that had been changed in the past. I seemed to have just begun to plan how to conquer a dungeon about now, and I sort of agreed to that sentiment. I should have been close to my parents, at least until elementary school.

Now, the real me will be the one who oversees the proceedings.

 

***

 

While I had not bought the sealed dungeon area or had been earning money, choosing the mountain in Hwasung, Gyeonggi Province, as my first conquest, had been a wise choice. I could guess how I had searched the market price, but since I would have destroyed all traces like bus receipts, I gave up on that route.

The first area was a large mountain about 1300 million won, and an F class sealed dungeon was waiting there until the Day of Reckoning. I had many things to prepare, such as buying the mountain and installing security systems. They all cost money. (EN: 2.5 million US in 2020)

Since I knew the past, earning money would not be difficult. However, while the 500,000 won I had saved during my skipped period may be adequate capital, a minor can only make a minors’ stock account, which forbade speculative transactions such as future options transactions. Even if I managed to establish a corporation, it would be difficult to make the investments I was aiming for, and that meant I desperately needed a proxy. I thought of several names, Jonathan, Gillian, Cheongsoo Kim, Jessica, and others. (EN: About $1000 US in 2020. Amazing, he has a thousand dollars in Elementary School…)

There was only one person I could trust, and that was Jonathan.

 

***

 

He would be a young man at twenty-five in Wall Street. Jonathan had reminisced that he and his comrades at that time were the ‘Wolves at Wall Street’ because the financial company he worked for had the word Wolf in it. 1997 was a year when the internet was still in its infancy, and it was the first time that websites were being created.

I searched a financial company that included the word Wolf in its name at Wall Street, and I found a link on the American search engine APE. The internet was extremely slow, and the picture of the employees appeared at crawling speed. Since Jonathan had been at the bottom ranks at the time, his picture came last. I saw a younger Jonathan smiling amid the picture that showed up bit by bit.

Jonathan looked like he was saying that he was a Wall Street elite, and the rage and despair of a man who had lost everything were not there. I sent an email.

 

-Hello, Jonathan. I have sent this email to ask your opinion on whether the Thailand baht is being exchanged for an overvalued price at the present.

 

***

 

Jonathan had often boasted of his role in the 1997 Asian financial crisis that had brought the IMF to Korea. He had said the best time of his life had been 1997, and even as he had attained the title of an A class hunter that everyone had wanted, his nostalgia for the past could be heard whenever he talked about that time.

I was certain that Jonathan would take the bait, as he had been anxious at the time being convinced that the Global Hedge Funds would attack the Thailand baht first. If he had made more aggressive investments from the beginning because he believed himself, the best time of his life would have been Epic.

However, he had been unable to do so since Jonathan had been playing catch-up before 1997.

 

-The Thailand baht is not overvalued.

 

I saw his reply in my Inbox before going to sleep.

 

-I apologize. I thought that if the Thailand baht was overvalued, it would be a justification.

 

The reply came back immediately as if he had been waiting for my answer.

 

-Please inform me who you are and which firm you belong to.

 

I expected this, and his bite on my fishhook was strong.

 

-Aren’t there other conditions that could be used as justification? The Asian foreign exchange reserves and the dollar’s continuing strength would be easy solutions to the Hedge Funds consortium’s problems. I expect that they will be attacking the Thailand baht this month, but their ultimate goal will not be Thailand. If they do attack, this would only be the beginning.

 

***

 

Jonathan was astonished. It had begun with an email from nowhere.

 

“Thailand would only be the beginning…”

 

The sender was certain that the Hedge Funds would attack the Thailand baht and even included the names of the most likely ones. Jonathan held his head after looking across the cubicles. His colleagues were all busy, and come to think of it, this situation did not warrant someone else’s advice. It was an opportunity.

The fact that large amounts of investment funds had poured into the Hedge Funds mentioned in the reply was no longer a secret. Those who worked in Wall Street estimated that where those funds would go next would change the entire situation. Therefore, Wall Street was tense nowadays, and this email had come during this wait.

Jonathan focused on the fact the sender had used the word ‘justification.’ Only someone that knew what was going on in this field could use that word in this context. He was more curious about where this mail was coming from than who was sending it. This may be a test. Jonathan breathed deeply and put his hands over the keyboard.

 

-My office is open, and I will be waiting. If you cannot visit me, you can reach me at…

 

Jonathan’s hands shook as if he had seen a ghost.

Editor: Userunfriendly

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