Ten days had passed since Gun-Ho handled the work by himself in the accounting team.
Time truly cures all things. He didn’t feel any difficulty handling B2B payment discount; he just needed to get the knack of it. However, he had to work till late at night every day because of the heavy workload in managing source documents and data entry into the accounting program.
Gun-Ho received a call from Jong-Suk; it has been a while.
“Bro, it’s me.”
“Hey, Jong-Suk. How have you been?”
“Bro, how’s your work in accounting? You achieved career advancement since you no longer work in a factory but work in an office.”
“Don’t get me started. I work till late at night every single day.”
“You don’t get paid for overtime because it is an office job.”
“Nothing much I can do about it. I have to stay at work until I finish the work.”
“Did you get a raise?”
Jong-Suk chuckled. “I got a raise because now I do welding and handle some machines, too.”
“Really? I should have stayed as a factory worker.”
“No, I am not a factory worker. I am a welder. I do have the nationally recognized certificate for welding.”
“You made a better choice than me. Do your parents still ask you to be a police officer?”
“They don’t anymore. When my dad was in the hospital, I gave my parents 4,000,000 won that I saved. They were very happy.”
“I see. You are a good son.”
“The manager I’m working with is on her maternity leave right now. So I have to do all the accounting work by myself; it is really a lot of work.”
“An office job looks nice, but maybe it isn’t.”
“An office job is hard. Maybe I shouldn’t have listened to the Cheongdam Town Chairman Lee and studied accounting.”
“You probably can’t go fishing anymore since you live far.”
“Yes, I can. If I take the highway, it only takes two and a half hours to go to the Pocheon fishing site. I will let you know once I become less busy.”
“Okay. I will talk to you later then.”
Gun-Ho checked the payment status of the entities for credit sales every day to see if they pay on time. It was one of the work Manager Kim handed over to Gun-Ho when she left. If a company didn’t pay on time, Gun-Ho would call a staff in their accounting team to demand the payment. Most of the companies among 40 entities made payments through B2B, and five of them would send the payment via electronic promissory note.
“Manager Kim said that an early payment discount is applicable to an electronic promissory note even in a private loan market. Let me call the hard money lender that Manager Kim mentioned.”
An electronic promissory note, not a B2B, can be transferred to a private money lender. The lenders deduct their fee of the total payment amount promised and the vendor receives the discounted amount after subtracting the fee. The company Gun-Ho was working for didn’t have many electronic promissory notes, and the amount of payments was relatively small. Gun-Ho once received a call from a private money lender.
“Mr. Goo? Hi. I am calling to talk to you about the service we provide. We do take electronic promissory notes and we charge less than other money lenders. Why don’t you sell your notes to us?”
Two of the companies for credit sales were very small companies. They were still issuing paper promissory notes. One of them issued a 2,000,000 won paper promissory note, and the other company issued a 3,000,000 won note.
“Paper promissory notes are troublesome. In order to receive them, I have to go to their office.”
When Gun-Ho had to make payments to client companies, he applied either a B2B discount or an electronic promissory note discount. Sometimes, he even had to ask the president to use the TIME OTP that the president was keeping in his office because he had to pay through the Industrial Bank of Korea. The major client company, Mulpasaneop, was not the only company that used the Industrial Bank of Korea for B2B payment; there were ten other small companies which used the service from the same bank.
Gun-Ho received a phone call from the Korea Electric Power Corporation (“KEPCO”); the payment due date for electricity had passed.
“You have an outstanding balance on your account with us; the amount to be paid is 12,000,000 won. If you don’t pay it by today, there will be a late fee.”
Gun-Ho verified the current balances of all three banks: Shinhan, Kookmin, and Woori. There were not enough funds to pay the electricity bill. He had to use the funds received in the Industrial Bank of Korea after applying the B2B discount.
“Let me ask the president for its OTP.”
Gun-Ho knocked on the president’s office door. The president was dozing off in his chair and the knocking woke him up. It was right after lunchtime.
“What is it?”
“I need to do B2B discount on the funds received in the Industrial Bank of Korea so we could pay the electricity bill.”
The president handed over the OTP to Gun-Ho while smacking his lips. He said while feeling annoyed, “Keep it with you from now on. It’s really annoying to hand it over to you every time you need to use it; it’s too often. Take it!”
The president tossed the TIME OTP of the Industrial Bank of Korea to Gun-Ho.
“Do you really want me to keep it for you?”
“Yeah. So you don’t have to knock on my door that often. It’s annoying for both of us, right?”
Gun-Ho took the TIME OTP from the president and came back to his desk. He was going to keep it until Manager Kim comes back from her maternity leave.
It has been two weeks since Gun-Ho started working alone in the accounting team. Gun-Ho received a call from his married older sister.
“Gun-Ho? Do you have money by chance?”
“My landlord asked us to vacate the apartment. I seriously need money. I have to find another apartment to move to, but I can’t find any with the money in my hand around here. Can you lend me 5,000,000 won? I will pay you the interest.”
“I have no money. I am barely making a living.”
“You have been working for over four years. You couldn’t even save 5,000,000 won?”
“My pay is really low. It’s hard to save any.”
“That’s because you spend too much on drinking.”
“If so, why did your husband fail to save enough money?”
“Driving a truck doesn’t pay much. We were barely able to send Jung-Ah to kindergarten. Whew, where should we move to then?”
“I am sorry, I really want to help you, but I really don’t have money.”
“Okay. I am the bad sister who is asking money from a little brother.”
“Don’t say that.”
“I got it. Hang up!”
Gun-Ho’s sister hung up the phone, feeling irritated.
“She must be serious about the money since she called me. But what can I do?”
Gun-Ho felt bad, but there was nothing he could do about it. Three days later, Gun-Ho was about to go home from his work when he received a call from his mom; she sounded troubled.
“Gun-Ho, we need you to come Incheon right away. Your dad collapsed, and the ambulance took him.”
“What? What’s wrong?”
“I don’t know. I have no money to pay for his medical bill. What are we going to do?”
Gun-Ho’s mother was about to cry.
“Okay, mom. I am on my way. Sh*t!”
Gun-Ho was annoyed. He headed to Incheon.
Gun-Ho arrived at the Gil Medical Center in Incheon. His mother and sister were already there.
“Your dad had an X-ray and is getting MRI right now.”
“What did the doctor say?”
“Nothing yet. His doctor is coming.”
“Who is with the patient? Is his son here?”
Gun-Ho went closer to the doctor.
“I am the son.”
“Come with me please.”
“How is he?”
“It’s a heart attack. An artery supplying heart muscle is blocked by a blood clot. His heart muscle is damaged.”
“What’s going to happen then?”
“He has to stay in the hospital. His heart muscle can die any time as it doesn’t get enough oxygen due to low cardiac output. He could get a sudden fall in blood pressure, and it really is dangerous.”
“I understood. I will have him admitted to the hospital.”
Gun-Ho was worried and anxious.
“Once he stays in the hospital, his medical bill will be really high. How much should I expect? I only have 1,200,000 won.”
Gun-Ho went outside of the hospital and started smoking.