CH 3.4

cw: slightly grotesque imagery, mention of suicide attempts

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Yaba shoved his fingers through the gaps in the mask as hard as possible.
He scratched his skin until it was red and swollen.
The bugs also crawled out and ate the fat on the face.
It was the perfect condition for tens of thousands of insects to lay eggs as the wet skin and fat adhered to each other.
He couldn’t remember when the bugs started laying eggs in the body.
He once tried to get a worm out of a blood vessel, but failed due to Giha’s obstruction.
He tried to burn himself to death again, but failed due to Cocaine’s interference, and suffocation failed as well.
The eradication plan had been unsuccessful, and he was searching for a secret solution.
Soon after, bugs crawled out of the eyeballs.
Yaba took off his mask as he convulsed.


Even the insects hiding in the pores crawled out and were helpless.
Yaba jumped and brushed away the filthy things.
Someone roughly grabbed Yaba’s hand.

“Be quiet.”

It was Imsoo who stopped it.
It was the dog of the thief who stole his testicles.
Yaba shook off the hand.

“It itches because of bugs.
Can I go and take a shower?”

“There is no such thing as bugs.
And don’t talk nonsense.”

“I’m going to take a shower.”

“I told you not to drop honorifics.
Now it’s time to go out.
Put on your mask and say something nice.”

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“Can’t you hear what I’m saying?! It’s itchy! It’s itchy!”

As Yaba screamed, his eyes widened with annoyance.
Yaba scratched his arm and glanced at the worm.
The worm was very small, and had an oval head and body, and hung like some hair or iron.
It looked like this very clearly, but people treated him like an idiot instead of consoling him.
Imsoo squinted at the blue curtain and lowered his voice.

“These guys, the boss takes care of them with great effort.
If you make a mistake, deal with it yourself.”

“Yeah, they must be the perverts who came to see eunuchs.”

“These are people who are suffering from a harsh world and come to heal their minds and bodies.
The only difference from others is that we are of a slightly more special class.”

“They are not interested in singing.
They’re here to see if our stuff is running properly.”

“The guests don’t know about the situation down there in your pants.
If they find out, that’s a serious problem.
And don’t speak informally.”

Imsoo added.
Then someone’s voice was heard through the curtain.

“Then I’ll be right in.
Executive Director Cha.”

Giha has crossed the curtain.
He looked like he was in his forties, but he looked younger than his age because of his stylish look and mannerism.
After checking everyone’s masks and costumes, he said to Cocaine.

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“He came unexpectedly recklessly and stubbornly.
He’s not in a good mood right now, so do well.
Well, you’ll be fine.”


With Cocaine in the lead, the young men lined up behind the curtain.
Yaba was also being dragged by Imsoo’s hand, but Giha grabbed the other arm and asked.

“What about your medicine?”

“I’m going to take a shower for a second.
Just ten minutes.”

“You didn’t take it.”

Giha glanced at Imsoo with reproachful eyes.

“I told you to take your medicine.”

Imsoo made a puzzled expression on his face.
Giha looked at Yaba again and wrinkled his eyebrows.

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“The people back there, I don’t have to explain why they can call for Cocaine without a reservation at this time, right? If you even want to keep your mouth shut, please just serve as an accompaniment.
If you still don’t want to, you get a pay cut and an extra penalty.
Especially today, double.”

A week ago, the president of a company made fun of Yaba while rubbing his butt.
Yaba couldn’t stand others making fun of his appearance, even if he tolerated everything else.
At that moment, he abandoned his rationality, and his fist flew as well.
In Paradiso, the customer was a God.
After throwing a fist in the face of God, Yaba was locked in a warehouse until the God relieved his wrath.
After he was released, he was given a huge penalty and barely escaped getting “out” due to Giha.

If you get “out”, scary things await.
So he had to persevere.
Imsoo, who had gone somewhere, shoved some antidepressants into Yaba’s mouth and poured water.
He had been taking this drug that relieved his depression and anxiety for a year.
Yaba swallowed the medicine, then raised his hand and touched Giha’s chin.
He asked, stroking his bluish beard with his fingertips.

“You didn’t shave?”

Giha was startled, but did not avoid it.
Yaba stared through the mask with emotionless eyes.

“I think the good thing about being an eunuch is the price of razors that are unnecessary.
I’m still looking for other good things, but there’s nothing else.
Can you tell me if you think of them?”

Giha brushed off Yaba’s hand belatedly.
Yaba licked his lips and walked away with a smirk.
This is because, pretending to touch his chin, he transferred worm eggs to Giha.
Maybe in three or four days, he would wake up in a room full of bugs.
This was just the beginning.
One day he will make Giha feel the sorrow of a woman without a womb.
Yaba waited quietly next to his colleague.
Imsoo stared at Yaba bluntly.

“Give up.
Have you ever won over him?”

Giha threw a line to Imsoo and turned around.

“Still, it’s not informal speech.”

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Imsoo nodded and followed.

The place where the young men were standing was lit up with blue lights and rose slightly from the flat ground, reminiscent of an altar.
While everyone was waiting, Yaba glanced at Cocaine.
Cocaine’s mask was special.
The gold leaf that covered the mask was much more splendid, and crystal beads hung on the tips of his feathers, making a clear sound as they moved.
So that anyone could see him, so that anyone could see that he was the center…

Then the curtains on both sides opened.
A closed room reminiscent of underwater was revealed, filled with artificial aquatic plants and water vapour.
From somewhere, the mixed laughter of men and women was heard.
He looked at the pool and foam in the middle of the room.
Across the pool was the group of men and women tangled up and giggling.
The tables, the bottles lying on the floor, and the smell of marijuana filling the room foreshadowed that they were already not sober.
Hashish whispered into the Cocaine ear.

“They’ve completely lost their minds.”

“Doesn’t matter.
I’ll just start.”

It was time for Cocaine to start.
Someone slowly stood up from the crowd.
He staggered unbelievably then fell into the pool and disappeared into the bubbles.
His companions were on drugs and had no idea what had happened.
Both Cocaine and the others exchanged glances in bewilderment.

“W-what happened?”

“Are we supposed to take him out…”

The commotion was brief.
Soon after, the figure of a man was revealed from the foam.
He swam so slowly that he was far behind even in a fight with a snail and came up to land.
In an instant, Yaba’s heart was violently attacked.

It was Cha Yiseok.

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