Gently touching her lower lip with her index finger, Yi-soo skimmed through the police report submitted by the authorities. According to the report, 29-year-old Seo Jae-young had inflicted serious injuries on 54-year-old chauffeur Kim Dong-yeong.
According to the statement, the victim somehow offended the perpetrator on that day. As they reached the perpetrator’s house, he got out of the car and attacked the victim. However, there were no key witnesses to corroborate the situation. Despite examining all the CCTV cameras near Seo Jae-young’s residence, the one camera that could have captured the incident clearly happened to be malfunctioning. Yi-soo narrowed her eyes, sensing a deliberate tactic.
“The defense claims that they conveniently deleted the dashcam footage at the right moment. We’ve asked the police to obtain evidence and try to restore it, but I’m not sure if it will come back intact,” Chief Choi explained.
“I see… What about the director?” Yi-soo inquired.
“Oh, I almost forgot the important part. After crossing fifty, my memory keeps flickering,” Chief Choi joked, scratching his cheek. He then continued, “The director… well, he suggested that it would be better to let it slide for now without causing further trouble. He asked me to convey that.”
“Let it slide?” Yi-soo repeated, puzzled.
“Yes, it’s such a dirty world… And you know what? The deputy director and Seo Jeong-hyuk were college classmates. They were quite close from way back. But this is off the record, of course,” Chief Choi grumbled with a sigh.
Yi-soo gave Chief Choi a knowing look, silently urging him to share the truth.
“Originally, the case was supposed to go to Prosecutor Jang, or maybe Deputy Chief Prosecutor, but you know how busy they are these days, especially with the trial involving citizen participation. So it ended up being handed to you,” Chief Choi explained.
“I see…” Yi-soo acknowledged.
“He called you the most just prosecutor in the district. I don’t understand why he’s so sarcastic about it. Anyway, he’ll be transferred next month, so please bear with it a little, Prosecutor,” Chief Choi added.
In essence, they wanted the case to be handled by someone with a lot of experience in the prosecutor’s office, someone who knew how to navigate the system.
Yi-soo didn’t consider herself a “just prosecutor” in the traditional sense. To her, justice wasn’t just a convenient label; it was a profound belief that should remain untainted. As a prosecutor, she couldn’t bend to the will of power and money. Thus, she had a guiding principle etched in her heart: “Crime follows the guilty, and virtue goes where it is polished.”
She was determined not to take actions that would compromise her conscience, no matter how subtle or blatant the directives from higher-ups were. Yi-soo refused to be arrogant or act recklessly, but she couldn’t simply cover up the case using force. Putting her pen down on the stack of documents, she looked up at Chief Choi.
“Where is this case being handled? They must have a lot of money. They might drag in big law firm attorneys by force,” Yi-soo said with concern.
“Oh, they’ve taken it up at Yoon & Kang. It’s not unexpected. They are a conglomerate-specialized law firm, after all. They have plenty of ex-judges as attorneys,” Chief Choi replied.
“Presumed innocent until proven guilty. That’s still a logic quietly prevalent in the legal community of South Korea,” Yi-soo commented, nodding lightly.
“With the victim’s condition… Can he participate in the investigation?” she inquired.
“Well, yes. He can come to the prosecutor’s office in a wheelchair. He speaks well too.”
“Understood. Then please schedule a suitable date for the summons, Chief. Please place all the records on the right side here.”
“By the way, our prosecutor, this might be a bit infuriating for me as well… You know? Be careful not to be too straightforward,” advised Chief Choi.
“Don’t worry. I’ll handle it well,” Yi-soo reassured.
With a word of trust, Chief Choi nodded and returned to his seat. Yi-soo leaned against the backrest of her chair and gazed up at the ceiling. The name “Yoon & Kang” had been haunting her thoughts recently, becoming an unfamiliar presence. Suddenly, memories of Hyun-seong came to her mind—the sight of his broad shoulders and perfectly fitted suit, his occasional glances towards her.
It was strange. Recalling his face evoked an indescribable, subtle feeling within her. Yi-soo tried to shake off these thoughts and refocus on her work.
At Yoon & Kang, they’ll probably have many former judges as attorneys, she thought.
Then, a low possibility crossed Yi-soo’s mind.
No way… he wouldn’t be the one handling it, right? she wondered.
The revelation of who was going to take the case turned out to be something she discovered a day later, as if it were a twist of fate.