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Code Red

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“We should have seen the hint earlier! We are getting praised for something that could have ended with one murder less, how is that satisfying?” “Why are you even the one complaining? If it hadn’t been for Soonyoung, the killer would be still on the run!” ”Yes, but…”

Soonyoung listened to his two colleagues arguing while already starting to write the report. The faster he got it done, the earlier they could take upon another case. This case indeed didn’t end well. Three people had lost their lives, they should have been faster.

“Officers!” Soonyoung turned around, seeing their chief. “Well done, well done. Especially officer Kwon. I heard that you figured out who the killer is.”

Soonyoung looked ahead without any real emotion, just nodding slightly. “Fantastic. The press is celebrating the catch of the murderer!”

Soonyoung went back to writing his report, not really hung up on the idea that the media was actually celebrating there catch. It’s just like his colleagues said, how can they be happy about a case that could have ended with one more person alive?

“Officer Kwon, I’ll expect you tomorrow in my office. For now you should all call it a day and relax a bit.” Soonyoungs colleagues jumped up from their seats, immediately starting to pack their things together.

“Yo, Soonyoung. Go drinking with us?” Soonyoung looked up from his papers, cocking his head slightly to the side.

“I want to write the report, but have fun drinking! Drink one also for me!” The other officer groaned at Soonyoungs words.

“We are working since almost three years together and you never went drinking with us. It’s a shame.” His second colleague just shoved the man ahead whispering that he should leave Soonyoung alone.

Soonyoung got up from his seat shortly to bow slightly and went back to work. He knew that his colleagues thought he was strange for never hanging out with them, but he plainly didn’t have the time to play around. He had a goal set and he needed to reach that. After that he could play as much as he wanted.

*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Soonyoung opened the door to his apartment and turned the light on. Nothing but silence greeted him. When he was younger, the constant silence made him feel unnerved. But now the silence was comforting. It was the proof that he was working hard. He wasn’t wasting his time on a lover or friends. Only his work was waiting in silence for him.

Soonyoung put his coat onto the rack and went over to his work desk. He put his bag on top and pulled some files out. He sighted once and started reading through them. After 10 minutes of reading his phone suddenly started to ring. Not many people even had his phone number, so he knew it would be important. When he looked at the lockscreen, he saw that it was actually his father calling. He hesitated for a moment picking up the call, but did so nevertheless.

“Hello, father.”

“I wanted to check how things are going. I read that your team caught the murderer and the press was especially praising you.” Soonyoung knew already where this call was leading to and he didn’t like it.

“Yes, but we weren’t fast enough. If we would have been faster, we could have saved one more person.” Soonyoung heard how his father chuckled slightly.

“You can’t save everyone. You did good catching figuring out who the murderer is and then catching him that fast.” Soonyoung ignored what his father said and just didn’t answer him. Discussing this with his father would be pointless.

“So did you hear any feedback about your application to the National Intelligence Service?” There it was. He knew that this could be the only reason that his father would actually call him. Congratulating him for a well done case? What a joke.

“No, I haven’t.” Soonyoungs father cleared his throat. “Should I ask the one who is in charge of the applications?”

Soonyoung fought down the need to get angry. Sometimes he also wanted to be like other alphas and just get angry and shout at his father. But he was well behaved or should he rather say well trained? He rarely allowed himself to get really angry.

“No, thank you. They will tell me their decision when it’s time.”

“Soonyoung, how much longer will you need to get into the National Intelligence Service? How much longer do you expect me to keep on telling my colleagues that you are not good enough for the National Intelligence Service?” Soonyoung slowly breathed in and out. He could do this, he would shout at him. His father had said already much more hurtful things. This was nothing.

“I’ll get back to you, when I heard something. Have a good night, father.” With that Soonyoung cut the line. He got up from his chair and walked a bit around his room. He wanted to scream and throw things at the wall, but he kept it all in. What use would it even be? No one would see his agony and no one even cared.

Soonyoungs father was in a high position at the National Intelligence Services. He came from a poor family and somehow still made it with a scholarship into Police University. He worked for many years hard and earned himself the job at the National Intelligence Service because of outstanding accomplishments in his job.

Since Soonyoung was born it had been his obligation to take after his father. There was a time when he was younger, where he really wanted to do something else later. The day his father heard about that, he had been totally out of his mind screaming for almost an hour at Soonyoung. So he gave up on his own dreams and started dreaming about becoming a police officer. It was a highly respectably and exciting job, so it wasn’t too difficult to chase after that dream.

At least that’s what he’d thought all his school life. Studying had always come easy to him, so his grades were always one of the bests at school without even studying hard. He hang out a lot with friends, was loud and just had a fun life. That all completely changed when he started attending Korean National Police University. His father suddenly got a lot stricter, constantly telling Soonyoung that he should concentrate on his studies and not hang out with his friends all the time.

At one point he just right out forbade Soonyoung to bring people home. Soonyoung felt frustrated for a long time. He was a naturally outgoing type and liked being together with people. He liked to joke around and have fun in general, but his father didn’t care. He only cared about Soonyoung being in the top spot at university. He wouldn’t accept anything less than that.

There were many talented and bright students at university, so Soonyoung constantly had to work hard. And at one point, being alone wasn’t even that hard anymore. He didn’t even have the time to worry about friends, because no one wanted to hang out with someone who always prioritized his studies over his friends.

He graduated university with distinction as best student of the year and he thought things would get easier then. He started off his rookie year at a police station in Seoul and was finally having some fun again. He dated some omegas, made some friends… but after his rookie year was over, his father became strict again with him. He shouldn’t play around but try to get into National Intelligence Service as soon as possible, he told him. If Soonyoung didn’t manage doing that fast, then how could he even look at his colleagues anymore without being ashamed?

So Soonyoung went back into solitary. He worked his ass off for two more years and made it into a crime analysis team and became a profiler. As good profiler, you had a good chance to get into National Intelligence Service.

Soonyoung had been constantly working day and night for the crime analysis team. Under the pressure of his father, he sent out three weeks ago an application to the National Intelligence Service. He still hadn’t heard anything from them and he was also sure that he wouldn’t get positive feedback. Even though he became a great profiler in the last years, he was still far from being experienced enough. He knew that and his father probably knew it too.

Soonyoung sat back down on his chair and took the file that he had read before into his hand.

“What sense does this all even make?”

*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Soonyoung stood in front of the door of the deputy chief. He couldn’t shake of the bad feeling he had. There was no reason for him to come here, so why did the chief actually call him? He knocked two times sharp on the door and opened it after he got called inside.

“You wanted to see me, sir?” The deputy chief was a great man. Clever, a good character, but still a great leader. Soonyoung liked him.

“Yes, yes, sit down.” Soonyoung sat down on the chair in front of the desk feeling a still a bit anxious.

“I called you here, because I heard that you‘ve sent an application to the National Intelligence Service.” Soonyoung should have known they would contact the chief. This was going to get messy.

“Yes, I did.” The chief hummed lowly looking at Soonyoung.

“You know, it’s still too early for you to join the National Intelligence Service, right?” Soonyoung nodded shortly. He didn’t even feel like explaining himself here.

“I know your father, he’s a great man, but also not easy. Don’t let him pressure you too much.” Soonyoung wanted to roll his eyes, but refrained from doing so.

“But I can agree on the fact that you can take upon a new challenge now. There is nothing left for you to learn here. But there is something else you still need to learn.” Soonyoung looked confused at the chief. He didn’t know what the other was talking about.

“Teamwork. I can see how passionately you are doing your work, but you are never really working together with the other officers. You really need to learn how to work in a team and also lead a team for your later career. This is the next step for you to get into National Intelligence Service.”

Soonyoung still had a completely straight face. The tumult going on inside of him didn’t show at all. Teamwork really was the one thing he always tried to avoid. Being so long alone makes you believe that it’s better to work alone. He couldn’t just change that so easily.

“There is an open position at another police station in Seoul where they are in the need of a new leader for the crime investigation unit there. The team leader who just quit got into National Intelligence Service, so you see that it’s a really good job for you. I sent them your profile and they already approved of you. You can start there on Monday.” His father wouldn’t like this. Hell, not even he liked this. Team leader? It seemed like an impossible task to Soonyoung. But if this is what it takes to get into National Intelligence Service then he would do it. He could do it.

“Thank you, sir.” Soonyoung bowed deeply.

“I already spoke with the deputy chief and he would like to see you today as soon as possible. Can you go there immediately? This is the address.” Soonyoung looked at the paper the deputy chief handed him. The address was at the other side of Seoul. He would have to search for a new apartment. A pity, because he liked his current one.

“I’ll take my leave then and go to the other police station.” The chief smiled at Soonyoung who still had a stoic impression on his face.

“Good luck. I hope you’ll find what you are still missing.”

*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Soonyoung felt restless when he arrived at his new deputy chiefs office. Seo Hosung was a well-respected and well known deputy chief in Seoul. He was quite curious why he was chosen for this job, there must have been many officers who actually applied for this job themselves.

Even more restless made him though that he would probably need to meet his team soon. This time as a team leader. Soonyoung really wasn’t sure how he should handle it. He kept on trying to persuade himself that it would work out somehow and that he would find the answers along the way, but deep down he wasn’t sure that he really could handle being the leader of a team.

Soonyoung knocked sharply twice at the door, like he always did and waited for the deputy chief to answer him. When Soonyoung opened the door, he saw a stern looking middle-aged man sitting at a desk. He only got up slowly and motioned Soonyoung to sit down.

“Good to see you officer Kwon, I’ve only heard good things about you.” Soonyoung bowed deeply before sitting down.

“I can only give that compliment back. Thank you for giving me this chance.” The deputy chief had a knowing little smile on his face.

“Are you really thankful for this chance or is it just a bother? I heard that you actually applied for the National Intelligence Service.” Soonyoung stared ahead for a while, busily thinking how to answer that question without embarrassing himself.

“Of course it is not a bother. I applied for the National Intelligence Service, but I know that I’m still young and have many short-comings. I am really glad to get the chance to prove myself as a team leader now. It will be an insightful experience.” Lies. Lies. Lies. Hopefully the deputy chief wouldn’t detect them.

“That’s reassuring to hear. You are well qualified for this job, because of your excellent work as profiler in the last years. I also believe being a team leader will be an important experience on your way to the top. And with your ambition, I expect nothing else than aiming for the top from you.” Soonyoung bowed slightly in his seat again.

“I’ll try my best to be not a disappointment.” The deputy chief now laughed at Soonyoung, obviously amused how serious the officer was.

“You’ll be doing great for sure.” The deputy chief took some files from his desk and put them in front of Soonyoung. “These are the files of the four officers in your team. You should study them well. It’s important that you know and understand everything about them.” Soonyoung grabbed one of the files immediately, but the deputy chief stopped him.

“I have to tell you something before you go through these files. Actually this team is not an easy one. They are really efficient and also go along well, but there is one officer who always runs off on his own to solve the cases himself. It would be good if you could get him a bit under control somehow. Your predecessor never managed to do so. I’m sorry that this job won’t be an easy one.”

Soonyoung suddenly got a bad feeling. The file felt heavy in his hand and he didn’t even want to open it anymore. The deputy chief was watching him expectantly though, so not opening the file wasn’t an option.

Soonyoung opened the first file and saw the profile of an officer. And it wasn’t just the profile of any officer, but the profile of one he knew very well. Suddenly this new job had gotten from challenging to almost impossible in mere seconds.

“Now I understand what you meant when you said that the job is not easy.” The deputy chief looked slightly surprised at Soonyoung.

“You know officer Lee?” Yes he knew Lee Jihoon. And he had really hoped that he would never meet him again. Though, that was kind of difficult in their field of work.

“Yes, we were in the same year at university.” The deputy chief nodded at Soonyoungs explanation.

“I should have known that. You are the same age right? That’s good then. If you know each other, it might be easier for him.” Soonyoung cleared his throat and looked in uneasiness at the deputy chief.

“I think you are mistaken. This will not make things easier at all. He hates me.” The deputy chief looked taken aback for a second, but suddenly started then laughing loudly.

“He’ll hate you either way, I guess. Have a look at the other files and then I’ll introduce you to your team.” Soonyoung swallowed nervously. He hadn’t expected to meet his new team already today, when he would only officially start working here on Monday.

Soonyoung looked through the other three files and saw two unknown faces and one more face he was quite familiar with. Of course Jihoon was still hanging out with Wonwoo. That was not coming as surprise to him. At least Wonwoo was a lot easier to handle than Jihoon.

The deputy chief got up from his seat when Soonyoung had closed the last file. Soonyoung unwillingly followed the deputy chief outside. They went through the corridor and arrived in an open-plan office. Soonyoung easily spotted Wonwoo already from far away. The guy who was sitting in front of him, his back turned to Soonyoung, was unmistakably Lee Jihoon. You don’t see police officers with such a small stature that often.

“Listen everyone, I like to introduce you to the new team leader of the crime investigation unit.” Soonyoung saw how Jihoon turned his head around looking with wide eyes at him. The shock didn’t last long and he angrily got up, his chair falling to the side in the process.

“What the hell is he doing here?” When Soonyoung heard that single question, he knew that the gates to hell had opened right in this moment.