The warrior’s Rebirth Chapter 60

The Warrior's Rebirth

Chapter 24. Ha Jeong Guesthouse (河情客棧) -02

The reason Seok Jin-ho decided to take over the guesthouse wasn’t anything complicated. It wasn’t about making more money; it was because of So Ha-jeong. As the number of routes from Seokpung Courier Service was bound to increase, so too would the workload at So Ha-jeong. Hence, Seok Jin-ho wondered how he could lighten So Ha-jeong’s burden. Additionally, lodging was an issue. That’s when he thought of the guesthouse which was capable of providing food and could be used as accommodation.

Even if the number of routes decreased, the guesthouse would still generate business, so the losses wouldn’t be significant. ‘With my past life experiences, maybe I can even profit beyond breaking even?’ Seok Jin-ho’s eyes gleamed. If he utilized his experience well, he could make a good profit, not just break even. Of course, Seok Jin-ho knew that business was never easy, but if he could tie it with Ascension Martial Hall, it wouldn’t be too risky.

‘I don’t plan to start big anyway.’ Seok Jin-ho envisioned the guesthouse to be 3 or 4 stories. The first and second floors would be a restaurant, and the third and fourth would be guest rooms. With that size, the operations wouldn’t result in substantial losses, he thought favorably.

“What’s on your mind?”

“Oh, just thinking about business. I’ve realized something new.”

“Really?”

“Yeah. But it seems like the food isn’t quite to everyone’s taste here, huh?”

Seok Jin-ho looked at the food laid out on the table, most of which was left uneaten.

“It’s not very good.”

“Then, let’s go somewhere with a moderate number of people. We can try the busy places another time.”

“But it’s a shame. Not the food, but the money.”

So Ha-jeong made a disappointed face. Though they weren’t so impoverished as to worry about the cost of a single meal, it was still a waste.

“Think of it as an educational expense. We’re not only here for the food. We’ve paid enough. Let’s go.”

“Yes, young master.”

Seok Jin-ho rose from his seat, and his companions, including So Ha-jeong, followed. In the backyard, now bustling with various livestock as if it were a small ranch, Chae So-gang skillfully distributed feed and collected the eggs laid by hens and pheasants. Although the chickens’ numbers remained the same, the pheasants increased daily, leading to more eggs to collect.

“Why do these pheasants lay so many eggs where people have touched, unlike the norm?”

Chae So-gang grumbled amidst the seemingly endless collecting of pheasant eggs. He also had to clear away any broken eggs trampled by others. Still, the main task was dealing with the manure.

“Even so, it feels fulfilling once I’m doing it. At least there are no worries about food.”

Looking at the goats, rabbits, and the leisurely roaming horses, Chae So-gang smiled contentedly, feeling full just from the sight. He then pondered whether it was time to divide the areas. Initially, there weren’t many animals to warrant such separation, but now it was different.

“Especially these pheasants. Why not go back to the mountains instead of crawling in here…”

Chae So-gang glared at the pheasants with a fierce look. However, oblivious or perhaps indifferent to his stare, the pheasants continued to huddle together or fly around.

Meow.

Then, appearing as the ranch’s emperor, the black cat Heukhwi gracefully took its place atop the fence and sat watching Chae So-gang.

“Ah, hello?”

Chae So-gang greeted Heukhwi awkwardly with a wave. But, dignified Heukhwi paid no mind to his greeting, focusing instead on grooming its fur.

“Hahaha.”

Despite the cat’s dismissive behavior, Chae So-gang wasn’t bothered, for it had always been this way. While his sister Chae So-seol would try to cuddle the adorable cat, he did not.

“Let’s get to work.”

Chae So-gang resumed his tasks, ignoring Heukhwi’s persistent grooming, as he was employed to work diligently. Finding a job at fourteen wasn’t easy, especially one that paid this well. Fully aware of this, Chae So-gang worked silently, without complaint.

‘I want to learn too.’

When his grandmother passed away, the only family he could rely on, Chae So-gang felt as if his world had crumbled. But there was no time for sorrow, as he had a younger sister to care for. The world was harsh to orphaned siblings without a fence, and there wasn’t much a fourteen-year-old could do; even if employed, it barely sufficed for survival. Despite his embarrassment, Chae So-gang had sought So Ha-jeong’s help, who had always treated the siblings kindly, hoping for assistance.

After securing a means to livelihood, Chae So-gang harbored a new desire.

‘I want to learn martial arts, too.’

As the guardian and brother, it was Chae So-gang’s duty to protect his sister Chae So-seol until she reached adulthood and even after she married and had children. To do that, he needed power.

‘But they’ve taken such good care of us.’

In his mind, he’d begged countless times. Yet, facing Seok Jin-ho, he couldn’t voice his request. Seok Jin-ho had taken in two siblings with no blood relation, and it felt presumptuous to ask for martial arts training on top of that.

“Haah.”

Deep sighs were all that followed his contemplation. No matter how much he thought about it, there seemed to be no answer, or rather, Chae So-gang couldn’t accept the one he had.

“Was it like this? Didn’t Jeong Ma-ryung do something like this?”

Shoveling manure, Chae So-gang became earnest, mimicking the daily practices of Jeong Ma-ryung. But while Jeong Ma-ryung created dynamic sounds with his movements, Chae So-gang’s shovel moved sluggishly through the air.

“Maybe I should start with physical training first? They did say the basics are the most important.”

After several attempts at imitating Jeong Ma-ryung’s inspiring thirteen techniques, Chae So-gang shook his head, realizing it was futile to grasp the true essence of the moves from mere observation. Acknowledging the impossibility of mastering the form by sight alone, Chae So-gang decided to focus on building his strength and resumed his work tirelessly.

Unbeknownst to him, a pair of eyes watched him from afar.

Meow!

From the windowsill, overlooking the backyard, Heukhwi rolled over to signal Seok Jin-ho for attention, exposing its belly while stretching forward its paws. But despite this, Seok Jin-ho’s gaze remained fixed outside.

Meowwww!

Heukhwi flipped again, crying out even louder this time.

“No amount of sweet talk will get you a hundred-year-old clam.”

Seok Jin-ho smirked, noting that Heukhwi had grown accustomed to receiving treats and now constantly begged for more. Though tasty and exceedingly beneficial for the body, overindulging wasn’t good. Moderation was key.

Meowww.

Yet Heukhwi wasn’t asking for clams; it seemed to want nothing more than to be petted innocently. Still, Heukhwi’s pleading aside, Seok Jin-ho watched Chae So-gang pulling a cart towards the vegetable garden.

“Hmm.”

Chae So-gang never spoke a word, but his interest in learning martial arts was clear. Anyone who saw him gazing intensely at the training sessions of Tack Yoon and Jeong Ma-ryung would’ve noticed, and not noticing would’ve been stranger.

“I do need a new bodyguard for the wet nurse.”

Seok Jin-ho stroked his chin thoughtfully. After the recent assassination attempt, he was convinced of the necessity for a personal bodyguard. While he, Tack Yoon, or Heukhwi were usually present, they couldn’t always be together.

Seok Jin-ho watched Chae So-gang closely.

“His physique isn’t bad. No need to mention his diligence and determination. But his five senses are slightly lacking.”

Overall, Chae So-gang lacked the attributes to be called a superior candidate. However, compared to Tack Yoon and Jeong Ma-ryung, he was quite favorable, and he could start at a much younger age.

Leaping out the window, Seok Jin-ho’s thoughts had reached a conclusion, followed quickly by Heukhwi.

Standing in front of the newly renovated building, So Ha-jeong gazed up in astonishment at the familiar two characters embossed on the signboard.

“Young Master, the guesthouse name…?”

“Right. I took it from the wet nurse’s name. More accurately, from the guesthouse owner’s name.”

“Owner?”

Surprise showed on So Ha-jeong’s face, as she had never heard such a thing, and she looked towards Seok Jin-ho with shaking eyes.

“Yes. It’s a gift for the wet nurse.”

“Wha-?!”

“Don’t be so shocked. It’s nothing for this magnitude. There are plenty more gifts to come.”

Seok Jin-ho responded nonchalantly, considering all that So Ha-jeong had done before.

However, she seemed to view it differently, pressing her hands against her chest.

“It feels excessive for me to receive. Wouldn’t it be better to just use my name alone?”

“Don’t worry about managing and operating everything. You just have to receive the reports. Check the financial records from time to time. It won’t be too difficult a task, and it won’t take much of your time.”

“Still…”

So Ha-jeong trailed off, feeling the weight of responsibility. Despite its relatively small size, the guesthouse was still a substantial enterprise, employing seven people. Thus, So Ha-jeong’s expression was one of concern.

“Experience is all part of it. You’ll learn as you do it, so don’t worry. I’ll help too.”

“We will help you as well!”

“Say the word, and we’ll assist you!”

Following Seok Jin-ho, Jeong Ma-ryung, and Tack Yoon joined in supportively, bringing moisture to So Ha-jeong’s eyes.

“Don’t cry on such a good day. It’s my first time since the construction, so let’s all take a look around.”

Seok Jin-ho naturally led So Ha-jeong, teetering on the brink of tears, into Ha Jeong Guesthouse.

Inside, everyone was already assembled, from the head cook to assistants, runners, and the staff in charge of guest rooms, all gathered at the entrance.

“Greetings!”

“We look forward to working with you, guesthouse owner!”

“We will work hard!”

“Thank you for hiring us!”

Except for the head cook, most were younger than expected, the eldest among them not particularly old in comparison to other guesthouses or inns.

“Young blood is the key here, and it seems to make for a good atmosphere. You all understand that if you don’t do your job properly, you’ll be fired on the spot. The guesthouse is owned by the wet nurse, but I have enough authority to make that call, right?”

“Of course, sir.”

The head cook spoke for the group, though everyone was sweating profusely, aware of Seok Jin-ho’s temperament.

Especially since not long ago, he had single-handedly swept the back alleys clean, prompting everyone to tense up and stand straight.

End of Chapter 24. Ha Jeong Guesthouse (河情客棧) -02



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