Long time no see.”
I reattached my name tag that fell off and greeted her.
When we arrived at the Victory is Mine auditorium, I went around greeting the members, and just after coming back from a brief trip to the restroom, I ran into PD Kim Heeyeong.
Kim Heeyeong, who I hadn’t seen in a while, was shining brightly.
“Wow, the best-looking one!”
“Are you the main PD for this?”
“No, I’m just here to fill in the staff shortage.
This damned old-fashioned company…”
PD Kim Heeyeong had been taking a break after finishing Shining Star.
Well, there’s no need for a non-idol to continuously take charge of representative programs like that.
It seemed like she had been dragged here as a last-minute replacement.
“Anyway, I heard you won first place.
I’m a bit late, but congratulations.”
“It’s all thanks to you, PD.
I wouldn’t have made it to first place without your warm consideration.”
“Wow, you’re really good at saying nice things.”
PD Kim Heeyeong giggled.
Just as I intended to make a heartwarming comment and move on, Kim Heeyeong tilted her head.
“By the way, what’s going on with Joo Woosung?”
Did this guy get caught?
“No, it’s just that when I came in, the atmosphere here seemed tense whenever people looked at Joo Woosung… Although I don’t really know why.”
So it wasn’t that he got caught.
Instead of responding with “That’s because he lives like a trash,” I just nodded quietly, and Kim Heeyeong shrugged.
“You guys are close.
If there’s anything, help him out.”
“That’s not the case.”
It wasn’t my place to worry about others when my ex-girlfriend was right here.
I suddenly felt a wave of realization and touched my forehead.
Forgetting just one side of my memory is such a… pathetic thing.
“…I’ll go first.”
I left the thoughtless PD Kim Heeyeong and quickly walked to the members and took my seat.
Jeong Dajun, looking at today’s schedule, opened his eyes wide and asked.
“Hyung, why are you suddenly like that? Did someone bother you?”
No, it’s just that I had a moment of realization…
Our innocent members, who seemed as pure as newborn babies, each said something.
“Who? Wow, was there a fight?”
“Did you already take care of that person?”
“Hey, if it’s Hoyun-hyung, he would have handled it well.”
I take back the innocent comment.
What are you guys babbling about? As they continued to push, a familiar voice came from behind.
One of the few people everyone knows, even with his name tag casually stuffed in his pocket, an idol group member, and that group’s center, Joo Woosung.
“Ah, Joo Woosung-sunbae, hello!”
Black Call was also participating in Victory is Mine this time, and the members were standing by his side.
Woosung glanced around the auditorium.
His eyes were filled with nostalgia, and then mumbled,
“I really didn’t want to come….”
“I can understand why….”
You dated most of the people here, after all…
Woosung sighed and plopped down onto a chair.
Why are you here if you didn’t want to come, especially since this program doesn’t even suit you?
“Why are you here?”
“…To support my junior?”
“Do you think so? My direct junior is over there, High-Five.”
Woosung gestured toward the other side.
I knew about the direct junior group of Black Call, but… Woosung didn’t seem to show any interest in supporting them.
There’s no way all of Black Call would come out just to support their junior… However, I soon arrived at the conclusion.
He’s being bullied.
It seems like he heard that if Black Call didn’t appear, the junior group wouldn’t be able to appear on music shows.
It was a tactic that broadcasting companies often used.
Despite being cornered by the broadcasting company… to come all the way to a place where you would face your ex-girlfriends every three seconds!
I decided to reevaluate Woosung’s mentality, but he made a disgusted face.
“What’s with you, looking me up and down like that??”
He shrugged his shoulders and ignored me, turning his head.
Behind Woosung, the Black Call members waiting for their chance to talk had curious expressions.
“Can it be that you’re the one…! The one who fixed our Woosung-hyung’s messed-up mentality?”
“Hey! What are you talking about?”
“Yes, that’s right.”
As I greeted and bypassed Woosung, the leader of Black Call stepped forward, repeatedly shook my hand, and thanked me.
I didn’t even know what kind of conversation was going on.
Still, the fans watching were excited to see the close relationship between the senior and junior groups, cheering and making a fuss.
“Thank you so much, ha… I’ve been worrying about when this kid would grow up, but after meeting someone like Seo Hoyun, he’s changed to the point where I can say, ‘Our child has changed.’ How did you do that magic…?”
“I didn’t do anything.
You’ve suffered a lot all this time.”
“Oh, even the virtue of consideration…! You really have everything.”
Joo Woosung was sulking, but the Black Call leader just smiled contentedly.
That group must’ve also worried about having a playboy in their midst.
“This is Jeong Dajun, our youngest member.”
“Ah, I’ve seen you a lot on TV.”
Black Call and our group were assigned seats close to each other, so we chatted away.
In the meantime, the competition had already begun.
[Welcome to the 14th Victory is Mine!]
“Has it really been 14 years now?”
“Seems like it.”
The opening ceremony proceeded quickly.
In keeping with the concept, the national anthem was played.
The fans had faces that read, “Why here, of all places?” But they still begrudgingly stood up, thinking, “We can’t let our kids look bad.”
After the brief opening ceremony, the events began one by one.
The first event was athletics.
Each idol group sent out one representative.
Our team’s representative was…
“Kim Seonghyeon, fighting!”
Of course, it was the physically outstanding Kim Seonghyeon.
As he stretched here and there, Black Call’s vocalist also came out.
I put my arm around Seonghyeon’s neck, lowered myself, and spoke urgently.
“Please, please, please come in first.”
If not, another embarrassing moment will be added to my past.
I didn’t receive any more damage after the last aegyo incident, but don’t I have at least some basic rights as a human being? Seonghyeon furrowed his brows as I desperately pleaded with him.
“Seo Hoyun, do you want to win first place?”
Seonghyeon’s expression became even more determined.
“I have to return the favor.”
“Hey… shit, you…”
I was not usually like this, but I was momentarily moved and looked at Seonghyeon with admiration.
Wow, there really was a reason people called him God Seonghyeon…
“I’ll be back.”
Seonghyeon took his place at the starting line.
As the men’s 100m preliminaries were announced and the athletes were introduced, Seonghyeon’s face appeared on the screen, and Noeul’s cheers could be heard.
“Kim Seonghyeon! Kim Seonghyeon!”
“Seonghyeon is really popular.”
Hearing Seong Jiwon’s pleased murmur, I calmly nodded.
Since the last school bullying incident was resolved and the editing of Shining Star went well, Seonghyeon’s popularity has been quite good, even among other fandoms.
Seonghyeon’s lane was number 5.
The commentators naturally started talking about him as the camera focused on him.
– “Wow-! Kim Seonghyeon’s form is looking pretty good!”
– “Seonghyeon was the one who caught that thief on the street last time, right? The hero!”
– “That’s right.
He’s so fast that he caught a thief! This is really something to look forward to.”
Once everyone got into position, the starting signal sounded with a bang.
Seonghyeon took the lead right from the start, sprinting with everything he had.
The commentators got excited and stood up.
– “Oh, oh, oh! He’s fast! Seonghyeon is fast!”
– “He’s going further! Seonghyeon is taking the lead!”
– “Oh no! Black Call’s Jeongwoo is catching up! But wait, Seonghyeon is pulling further ahead! Seonghyeon is going for it, all the way to the finish line! And he crosses-!”
– “Seonghyeon! Seonghyeon is in first place!”
“Hyung, that’s amazing!”
Seonghyeon sprinted past the finish line and crashed into the sponge wall.
Black Call’s vocalist also hit the wall right after, and they both got up with a laugh, patting each other.
While they seemed to be at peace, the commentators were in an uproar.
– “How can he run so fast?”
– “It’s incredible! No wonder he could catch a thief!”
“Kim Seong Hyun, the purple light!”
The Dawn members excitedly danced in celebration.
The camera caught us dancing, and I clenched my fists in silence among the members.
With the preliminaries going this well, the finals were as good as won.
Seonghyeon waved at the camera and Noeul with a bright smile.
I clasped my hands together and prayed fervently.
“Hyung, what are you doing?”
“I’m praying over the water.”
“Where did you put the water?”
I left the confused members behind and put all my faith in Seonghyeon.
Please, please, my dear child.
While waiting for the other participants’ preliminaries, Seonghyeon went to the fan section to chat briefly before returning with even more energy.
– “Oh, Kim Seonghyeon’s condition seems even better than before!”
– “But this time, it won’t be easy.
Maz won the gold medal in the men’s 100m event last time.”
– “What was Maz’s record back then?”
– “It’s on the all-time record list.
It’s the third best!”
A Maz member casually walked out.
His record was faster than Seonghyeon’s earlier time.
I was on high alert, even though I wasn’t the participant.
Seonghyeon bowed to his opponent courteously, and the commentators marveled at his gesture.
– “Even in the midst of this, he still bows! Is this what idols are like?”
– “No, no, this is a psychological tactic.
He’s checking how light and flexible his opponent’s body is and measuring the angle with the bow.”
– “Such deep meaning!”
“That’s a long shot.”
The commentators were spouting nonsense, but that was fine.
I still held both hands together, desperately hoping for Kim Seonghyeon’s victory.
– “Ah~, The Dawn members are cheering so hard.”
– “Over there, Seo Hoyun is already clasping his hands and praying.”
– “It’s a tearful display of teamwork!”
I almost shed tears myself.
Because my life was on the line.
– “The men’s 100m final begins now.”
Everyone took their positions in front of the lanes.
Kim Seonghyeon’s face hardened again.
At the same time, Bang! The starting signal sounded.
– “Off they go!”
Kim Seonghyeon bolted out like a beast.
It was as if he used some sort of teleportation technique, moving so quickly that the space seemed to fold with every blink.
His tall stature and long arms and legs seemed to contribute to his speed, making it even faster than before.
– “Ah! It’s neck and neck with Maz’s Camel and Park Bing!”
– “No way! Maz’s Camel is faster.
Wait, no, no?! Right now, The Dawn’s Kim Seonghyeon is catching up! Kim Seonghyeon, Kim Seonghyeon!”
– “Shouldn’t this guy be an athlete instead of an idol?!”
The commentator’s excited voice filled the stadium.
Kim Seonghyeon sprinted like a madman until the end.
He and Maz’s Camel were neck-and-neck until they almost reached the finish line.
The race was incredibly close, and Kim Seonghyeon crashed into the sponge wall and collapsed.
“Who’s first? Who’s first?”
“Seems like it’s Seonghyeon-hyung?”
– “And the winner is-!! The Dawn’s Kim Seonghyeon! With a record-breaking—Victory is Mine’s best time!”
“Wow! He broke the record!!”
The entire stadium buzzed.
Kim Seonghyeon, gasping for breath on the ground, suddenly stood up and beamed.
Then, he checked on the other team members before running toward us.
We raised Kim Seonghyeon well!
“Hey! I got first place!”
“Wow, Seonghyeon, you’re amazing~.”
As Seong Jiwon greeted Kim Seonghyeon with bright applause, I clenched my fist and made a small, victorious gesture.
“You saw that?!”
“You did great!”
I grinned and patted Kim Seonghyeon’s back enthusiastically.
Kim Seonghyeon soon ran towards the fan seats with a flushed, excited face.
The fans cheered as they welcomed him.
“Look at him, rushing straight to the fans… Is this the legendary… God Seonghyeon?”
“Your group doesn’t have a Kim Seonghyeon, huh?”
Kang Ichae and Jeong Dajun murmured with pride.
My face must have shown the same pride, as I didn’t even think about teasing them.
[Are you happy?]
Don’t use informal speech.
[Victory is Mine quest 1st place count: 1/3]
Just two more times.
Just two more.
 Apologies, but I decided to change this group’s name from Maze to Maz to be more faithful to the phonetics of the Korean, “마즈.”
 For those unfamiliar with the Korean language, the system used “좋냐?” which is informal/banmal.
The formal version would be “좋으세요?” which uses the polite form “습니다/세요” ending.
As far I remember, the system has always been using formal speech, but I’ll have to check the raws.
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