The conference room on the 28th floor was abuzz with tension as five lawyers sat around a long rectangular table, preparing to handle Mr. Seo Jae-yeong’s case. The air was thick with skepticism and disbelief as Jae-yeong sneered, looking down at the young attorneys as if they were mere novices.
“Let me formally introduce ourselves. We are the team that will handle Mr. Seo Jae-yeong’s case,” Attorney Hyun-seong announced calmly.
Jae-yeong responded with blatant sarcasm, “What? I thought only old folks would be abundant… You gathered all the lawyers who haven’t even dried the blood on their heads?”
Most of the lawyers around the table were indeed in their 30s or late 20s, fitting the profile of associate lawyers who typically handle the paperwork. However, Jae-yeong had expected to see seasoned attorneys, even former judges among them. This unexpected lineup seemed to fuel his confidence further.
Without flinching, Hyun-seong handed over some documents. He had no patience for an arrogant and power-seeking individual who relied solely on their parents’ influence.
“One of our team members is on sick leave today, but they will attend the trial. Most of the juniors will handle the paperwork, and I will take charge as the lead lawyer,” Hyun-seong stated firmly.
Jae-yeong couldn’t resist making another snide remark, “Yoon… Hyun-seong, a lawyer too young-looking as well.”
Ignoring the jibe, Hyun-seong continued, “Let’s not get in each other’s way since we’ll both be busy. Why did you commit a special assault against the victim, Mr. Kim Dong-yeong?”
With a careless air, Jae-yeong replied, “Well, I’ve already explained everything. I just did it to give him a lesson. Well, damn it. If he’s getting paid, he should listen as much as he received. This… it’s just that the old man didn’t have the will to work.”
His nonchalant attitude gave off the air of a thug, leaving the other associate lawyers uneasy and exchanging worried glances. They didn’t dare show their discomfort overtly in front of the client, but the tension in the room was palpable.
Undeterred by Jae-yeong’s mocking tone, Hyun-seong maintained his composure, a mask of professionalism on his face. “Why did you assault the victim, Kim Dong-yeong?” he inquired.
“It’s obvious, isn’t it? He was driving like an idiot, so I taught him a lesson. Ah, on top of that, the chauffeur had the nerve to talk back to me as if I were his son. He spewed all sorts of nonsense. Damn, why should I be treated like that kid?” Jae-yeong retorted, his words laced with frustration.
“Please refrain from using profanity. Did you delete the CCTV footage in front of your home, Mr. Seo Jae-yeong?” Hyun-seong pressed on, maintaining his calm demeanor.
“Hah, you brought in someone so busy. Is this procedure really necessary? Don’t make me repeat myself,” Jae-yeong scoffed.
“Mr. Seo Jae-yeong,” Hyun-seong addressed him firmly.
In truth, Jae-yeong was growing increasingly uncomfortable with the situation. He couldn’t fathom why he was facing consequences when he had paid someone to handle the matter. Besides, it was partly because of this incident that he had received punishment from his father, being slapped twice. Though his father had advised him to behave properly, Jae-yeong’s defiance remained unwavering.
Observing Jae-yeong’s demeanor, Hyun-seong put down the documents with a sigh and raised his chin slightly. His voice was monotonous but sharp as he spoke. This investigation seemed like a futile waste of time. In a law firm where every minute counted, this approach was unacceptable.
“Let’s end it here. Yoon & Kang won’t take on Mr. Seo Jae-yeong’s case,” he declared, his decision resolute.
“What?” Jae-yeong was taken aback.
“Attorney Yoon…!” one of Hyun-seong’s colleagues gasped.
“There is no need for us to see you off,” Hyun-seong’s words were like ice, burying something beneath their surface. Jae-yeong, taken aback by this cold attitude, stood up in a fluster, while the other associate lawyers in the room held their breaths.
“What the hell are you talking about? Why won’t you take the case?” Jae-yeong demanded.
“I will personally inform President Seo. Or you can tell him directly if you prefer. Now, what’s everyone still doing here? Get up,” Hyun-seong replied, unfazed by Jae-yeong’s outburst.
“Oh, yes. Attorney Yoon,” one of the associates chimed in nervously.
“Are you insane? How can a major law firm reject me like this?” Jae-yeong’s emotions spiraled out of control as everyone began leaving the conference room.
In a fit of anger and humiliation, Jae-yeong suddenly stood up, unable to contain his emotions. His face turned red and blue, and he slammed his palm on the desk, causing a commotion. Hyun-seong, who had been walking towards the door, turned his head slowly. His pitch-black eyes, previously turbulent, had now calmed to a clear hue. A faint twist appeared at the corners of his mouth, revealing a touch of amusement.
“Who are you to act like that, Mr. Seo Jae-yeong?” Hyun-seong’s question shattered Jae-yeong’s expectation that he would receive an apology without consequences, making him involuntarily flinch. Despite his imposing stature, Hyun-seong exuded an aura of intimidation even when standing still.
Despite his pride, Jae-yeong’s attempt to put on a show of strength was no match for Hyun-seong’s cold and composed demeanor.
“Go and tell your father. Attorney Yoon Hyun-seong won’t take this case,” Hyun-seong declared firmly.
Jae-yeong, filled with a mix of anger and arrogance, retorted, “Do you think my father will just sit still? You want to play with fire and provoke me? Make me regret it?”
“Well, let’s see who will end up regretting. Go ahead.”
As Jae-yeong stormed off, the others in the room watched him leave with worried expressions, glancing at Hyun-seong. They were concerned about his decision to let such a client go.
“Are you sure you’ll be okay? Just letting him go like that…” one of the lawyers voiced their concern.
“Don’t worry about it. He’ll be back soon enough,” Hyun-seong assured.
“But he seemed so wounded in his pride. Will he come back?” another lawyer questioned.
“Let’s go,” Hyun-seong replied resolutely, signaling the end of the discussion.
In the aftermath of Jae-yeong’s departure, Hyun-seong couldn’t shake the feeling that the arrogant facade the man had put on was a mere cover-up. Beneath the bravado, there was a sense of insecurity, and Hyun-seong suspected that Jae-yeong might be holding some kind of trump card.
As they followed Hyun-seong down the corridor, the sound of their shoe heels echoed through the hall.