Chapter 18 - Is father happy?

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“You did well today. But you know, it’s as though the police are conducting a case while being unable to cooperate with the Prosecution Office.….”

At that time, the TV in the Chief’s Office showed Prosecutor Seo Ja-dong’s briefing.

[… The position of the prosecution is the same as the police. According to the data we collected, the late Woo Jin-hyung and Woo Jin-seong were brothers, and as a result of the investigation, we came to know that they were psychopaths…]

The Chief laughed out loud at it and applauded.

“Ahh, see that! Good job! I mean it, Dr. Im and Woo-jin. I should have known it when the Chief Prosecutor had contacted me earlier. I hate seeing people steal our data and f*cking use them everywhere without crediting us. Maybe they finally ate their own medicine? Whose idea was that?”

“It was Dr. Im’s idea. In fact, we can say that Dr. Im had done everything.”

Yah, Dr. Im, I have heard many unique things about you in the former station. The next case will be done by?”

At that, Team Leader Woo-jin moved a little.

“Ah, Chief. Are you really asking that? I haven’t even slept properly for the past couple of days. You need to give us all time to rest, at least two days. That way, even Dr. Im will replenish his energy and start a new investigation….”

The Chief stared at Woo-jin for a moment and then smiled.

“Right, you all did well. It is good to see the Prosecutor’s Office failed. Return right away after your two days off. After that, Team Leader Woo-jin will take the lead. Since there are no special cases allocated yet, maybe the schedule can be adjusted too?”

“Yes! That will help a lot.”

“Actually, I even wanted to give a commendation in public for you all, but if I, the Chief, does it, then the Chief Prosecutor would curse me out loud. Ah, have a special dinner with Korean beef today.”

“Yes!”

Hansol and Woo-jin bowed and went out.

Team Leader Woo-jin spoke to Hansol excitedly, “Did you see the expression of the Prosecutor on the TV? He was totally frowning. When we took the case, I thought we were unlucky, but in the end, it was a total knockout for them! Dr. Im, you did an excellent job.”

“Ah, no. Then, can we leave work right away without staying until time-out?”

“Won’t you come to have Korean beef?”

“I have something to do.”

“But… you are a colleague who only works with us, and it isn’t like you are a doctor who performs on patients. But yeah, you must have work to do. Okay, I will tell the team members so look after yourself.”

As Woo-jin proceeded to their office, Hansol went straight out of the building.

It was an exceptionally sunny day. Hansol drove the car and headed to the person he visits two times a year.


Professor Kim Hee-seob’s Lab, Department of Psychology, University of Korea — is where Hansol was headed. After quitting working as a psychiatrist, he was a person who devoted most of his time to researching the development of psychopaths. Hansol thought of visiting him.

As Hansol opened the door and entered, he saw a middle-aged man was reading at the desk. The middle-aged man took his eyes off the paper at the sound of the footsteps and looked at Hansol.

“Hansol.”

“Teacher Kim.”

Hansol felt that the word Teacher was a more familiar title to Kim Hee-seob than Professor because Professor Kim Hee-seob was the one who really took care of him for the past 20 years and kept an eye on his condition.

He asked Hansol to call him Professor, but Hansol felt more entitled to refer to him as Teacher.

“Sit there.”

As Hansol sat down on the sofa, Professor Kim sat on the other side.

“Would you like tea or coffee?”

Hansol put down two cups of coffee from his hands.

“Teacher, I got one for you.”

“You can just come to my lab and drink. I don’t know why you still buy them outside.”

Professor Kim sipped through the cup of hot americano and pursed his lips. Knowing what happened with Hansol and his father, he couldn’t speak anything hastily.

“Teacher, I have something to ask you. What kind of person was my father? Does my father’s PCL-R test or intelligence test data exist?”

However, Hansol had no intention of dragging this meeting. At Hansol’s direct question, Professor Kim responded with a brief look that looked somewhat bewildered.

“That… I was the first student of Professor Im, so was not able to secure such data. From the villa case which happened 10 years ago to the recent case, I tried to get help from many places and get things about it, but no one has data of Professor Im. He must have been tested by someone and left a record… but they don’t seem to be in the range of people I know.”

“Someone making records of Psychopath Research in Korean and someone the teacher doesn’t know… and father himself could be a subject of the research. I haven’t seen my father for 10 years. It was once or twice when my mother’s anniversary came. He would call me then. And even then we didn’t have much to talk. Would the result be different if I had visited frequently?”

“Hmm… Professor Im already had his wife killed once. Ordinary psychopaths get pleasure by the act of killing with their hands, but Professor Im is someone who gets pleasure from creating and watching the situation. There was no circumstance that he would have known he was one.”

Hansol thought of his childhood. His father was particularly obsessed with the ‘education’ and wanted Hansol to live like an average person. He showed the obsession that Hansol should be able to lead a daily life.

A study showed no psychopathic growth or aggression due to removing the temporal lobe of the brain. Hansol had made an effort to live like an average person with that.

Even if he cannot read other people’s feelings or feel them, he can live like others because of his father’s education. Although his father educated him too much, Hansol didn’t think that his father himself would be a psychopath. His father’s disciple, Professor Kim, sitting across from him, had the same thought.

“As his disciple, how was my father?”

“He was humorous. It was the first time I saw him with a real serious expression when he brought you. After seeing that darkened face, I knew that he was having trouble with his son. But it wasn’t dark enough where he felt like he lost hope. He was a Professor with a high name so there were always people around him.”

“When did father realize that he was a psychopath?”

At that question, Professor Kim tapped his lips as he thought.

Hansol felt there must have been a particular time when his father realized the truth—a time when he discovered the difference between himself and others. That was the important thing. To his father and Professor Kim, Hansol was one of their research topics, but on the contrary, to Hansol, too, his father was a subject of study. If the traces left behind by his disappeared father were found, someone could be figured out.

“Some people live their whole lives not knowing their true selves… Professor Im… he wouldn’t have been aware of it.”

“Him? A person who studied psychology and psychiatry? And he didn’t know? I do not understand how that can happen. There must have been some kind of giveaway. We need to find that. Otherwise, my father will commit another murder. He is quietly staying hidden right now, but once a psychopath enjoys the pleasure of killing, they don’t stop for long. And teacher should know it too. You did try profiling.”

“… I cannot give you any definite answer, but first if we look at the results of the continuous research on the development of psychopaths… there must be a point where the realization struck on the difference between self and others. A facilitator might exist. In case of professor Im, he always used an assistant in his murders. But how did he even get in touch with them? And that one who helped, they were all psychopaths. He picked up people like you.”

Hansol thought for a moment. If he was his father, how would he commit the murder?

Gathering psychopaths as helpers in murders? They must be the people who visited his father for help and treatment. Realizing that there was something wrong with their head, they thought they had to get their brains straight, and his father turned them into murderers.

The suspect in the villa case and the two murder cases which happened 10 years after that, the victims and suspects, the Woo brothers. All have something to do with his father.

First of all, he must have checked through their antisocial personality disorder test. After that, he must have conducted the PCL-R tests to determine if they were psychopaths. But some psychopaths might not want to commit murder. They were coming to the hospital to ease their anger and aggression and calm their minds. They were people who were coming to be treated.

And his father was controlling those few people who wanted to be treated. His father must have calmed them down and made them believe in him. one of the characteristics of psychopaths. To rise above the others. And his father, Professor Im, created a group of psychopaths like that.

If it was further investigated, it might come out. The suspects in the case he handled might have some kind of connection or group. Through such meetings, their desires were fully developed, and they came together to plan a murder. That was Hansol’s guess.

“Was my father happy? Teacher, if it was me, I would have had a lot of fun doing this. There are people with the same aggression like me, and below me. I can control them and direct them to do something. Wouldn’t that be fulfilling? Can we think of it like the secret life of that man?”

“Hansol. No matter how, you should never turn out like Professor Im. Not you.”

“Yes. It is why you, Teacher, looked after me for so long. You want me to live like a normal person.”

“That is one thing, but… I want you to walk on your path without obsessing over your mother’s death or your father’s murder records. You are doing well as a Police Profiler. If you continue to walk down the same path, you will….”

“Is Teacher afraid that I might change? But Teacher. As you know, my heart still pounds. As you know, the moment I tore open that butterfly’s wings, that moment the aggression awakened. The moment I saw the person who murdered my mother, my heart pounded. Every moment of it was joy. Will I be able to continue living as a profiler for life? Everyone in the media is looking at me. Profiler, the son of a psychopath. Enough papers are asking for an interview. But, I think all this started with my father.”

“Hansol…”

Professor Kim’s face darkened. Hansol smiled softly. When he smiled, Hansol’s face looked like a well-carved statue.

“Anyway, I need to leave now. The investigation into father will continue. Whether I change or not is entirely my choice, so do not worry.”

Hansol greeted the man, turned around, then left the lab.

As Hansol’s steps were getting further away…

Professor Kim called for someone.

“… Professor. Hansol left.”

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