147 – The Immortal Azure Dragon’s Mundane Troubles
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While the Smith family were bonding, and while John was undergoing education by his adopted sisters, Qing was hard at work sorting through the Project MirAIs applicants.

And currently, he was waiting around in a Starbux cafe to meet the first on his list. Or rather, to sort out the mess that his boss had left for him to clean up.

Again.

Qing resisted the urge to sigh and instead flipped through his notebook. Pen in hand, he scanned through the list of the next applicants while waiting for Miss Yozora to finish her shift.

The morning bustle of people in the café filled the air, reminding the Azure Dragon a bit about the days in the past when his sect was still in power. Wandering around the place disguised as a mortal, listening to complaints and worries, helping out those in need...

Good times... Though the sect still collapsed in his absence. All because it lacked the proper infrastructure to handle itself while he wasn't around. A fatal mistake... and one that Qing was doing his best didn't happen to Myth Incorporated and John.

...In truth, it was probably an unnecessary worry considering the fact that John was a transcendent being who could wave his hands and solve literally any problem that came his way if he truly wanted to. Even so, since John was trying to live an honest life now and actively limiting himself to the mortal rules, Qing wanted to do the same.

Besides, it was a point of pride for Qing. Unlike before, he'd ensure that Myth Inc. was here to stay. It was small now and heavily reliant on John's presence and abilities, but it didn't have to stay that way.

Gradual steps and expansions. Hiring talented mortals and slowly seeding out innovations while advancing the overall level of the world itself.

Qing shook his head and then sipped the macchiato that he ordered.

That was for the distant future. For now, the immediate step was to sort out the staff issues and the next generation of idols.

"Let's see..." Qing muttered and scanned his notes.

Shu Yozora. That was who he had scheduled to meet... and also the only one who left a proper voicemail application that wasn't looking for 'that' sort of job.

Qing tucked a loose strand of hair behind his ear and then glanced over at the counter.

It was a busy morning and Shu was the only person working. Even so, she was managing well. Taking orders while micromanaging the various blenders, coffee machines, and other devices...

From just that alone, she had Qing's approval.

The current members of Project MirAIs were all diligent and talented, but they weren't detail oriented. In fact, if not for Miss Beta setting up the proper foundation in the beginning, Qing was certain that everything would be a mess right now.

...In truth, a manager would be best, but finding talented individuals that wouldn't get romantically involved and could be trusted was difficult. At least, without resorting to external means.

Mister Kimura had contacted Qing that he might have found three potential hires, but since the business with Shin Seiryuu's execution had occurred, he wouldn't be able to sort it out until Friday.

Qing tapped his pen against Shu's name and jotted down a few notes. Hard-working, skilled at multi-tasking, versatile... A jack-of-all-trades.

That done, he checked the next name on the list.

"Yuri Miyamoto..." Qing muttered and then closed his eyes, recalling the information he received from her.

Apparently, she was a high schooler in her last year. Because of various circumstances though, she decided to finish her school early and drop out of school early to pursue a culinary career. Because she didn't anticipate the costs though, she needed to find some work to make ends meet.

Interestingly enough, Yuri said she had heard about the job from a friend and applied directly through the Project MirAIs application site instead of through Myth Inc.

Which was odd since it wasn't public yet. The only way to reach that page was if Miss Beta gave them the link directly as she had designed the page or if Qing had given her the link. And since he definitely didn't, it meant that Yuri had managed to get the link through either Beta, or someone that Beta trusted enough to give the link to.

Whatever the case, she was someone that Qing needed to look into more. And since he had scheduled a meeting with her tomorrow morning, he'd find out then.

As it stood though, from the fact that she was the daughter of an internationally renowned chef... who was apparently the former patriarch of a local yakuza clan, Qing had a feeling that she would at least have an interesting story that they could use as a background.

Qing nodded and made a small checkmark over the name to remind him later.

Next...

"Hm?" Qing paused his pen over the next name and blinked. "Chihiro Kimura... Right. She applied as well."

Mister Kimura's daughter, Chihiro. From what Qing could remember, she stated that she saw the auditions page on the website and reached out for more information. She had also supplied some of her work for consideration ahead of time.

Qing spun his pen around and said, "If I remember correctly, she was an illustrator?"

An artist that went by the handle 'Kiiro-chi.' And also one that had drawn quite a few fanarts of the current members, along with some short animations.

"Hm..." Qing stared at the name and tapped the page.

On one hand, it would be good to have a talented artist on the team. John's direction for Project MirAIs was already going against the grain of what society saw as a proper 'idol', so having more avenues of content would be ideal.

On the other hand... Qing highly doubted that Mister Kimura was aware of his daughter's interest or he would have brought it up. And since he was officially on the payroll already, it could be seen as a conflict of interest if word got out that his daughter joined the company as well.

Although Project MirAIs was considered a separate business entity from Myth Incorporated, so the issue could be resolved in that way...

Qing sighed and ran his hand through his hair. "I really need a team."

Bai was useless, going completely off the grid since reporting that he found that doctor.

His boss, John, was useless at the moment due to handling his women issues, family concerns, and his spending time with his pregnant wife.

The one that had been carrying the company before he arrived, Miss Beta, had stepped away to pursue her own projects.

John's clone, Titor, was missing as well... although Qing noted that a few trademarks had been registered under a 'John Titor' recently, as well as a company called Mirror Corporation.

And knowing John, it was definitely some trouble brewing on the horizon.

But that was for his boss to sort out when he realized it.

For now...

Qing paused and then flipped ahead a few pages to make some notes on people to recruit for Project MirAIs.

Managers were a must, but Mister Kimura was handling that end.

A legal team was another must. But since Fae and Co. Law Offices had accepted his offer of becoming in-house counsel, that should be settled.

A production team and a producer... It would be ideal to have someone else in the role, but John had made it clear that he wouldn't let anyone else handle that so it couldn't be helped.

Then there was the fact that they needed to find private tutors. John might have forgotten, but Rin needed proper schooling to ensure she had the opportunities for a normal life when she decided to graduate from being an idol. For that, and for any other idols that they might accept in the future, it was essential to hire staff that were certified to teach school curriculum... or establish a private school themselves and hire that way.

Qing frowned and quickly jotted that down.

After that... All that was left then was a marketing team, human resources, and public relations.

Marketing could be delayed for now since too much growth too quickly would be bad... especially since John's recent performance for Yue had gone viral and searches for him and his company were through the roof.

Human resources... Well, that would inevitably fall on Qing regardless due to the nature of the business.

That just left public relations... which they desperately needed.

Qing frowned and sipped on his coffee, thinking.

John's last press conference was an unmitigated disaster. Not in terms of the information. No, that was fine. But considering the fact that he was so outstanding, it would draw attention anytime he stepped into the public eye and overshadow the core of what he was saying.

For project announcements, major business decisions, and things of those nature, John was perfect. But for smaller things, handling delicate matters... a more subtle touch was needed.

Someone calm and analytical that could gauge the pulse of public opinion, understand the flow and adjust accordingly while presenting the information in a clear and understandable manner-

Qing froze and then let out a groan. "Is it me again in the end?"

At this rate, he would never get a proper vacation...

Qing pinched the bridge of his nose, trying to stave off a headache.

"Sorry for the wait, Mister Long!" A bright and energetic female voice called out.

Qing blinked and looked up from his notebook.

A young girl with short black hair sat down in the chair across from Qing. Shu Yozora.

Since she had just gotten off her shift, she was still wearing the black shirt and pants that made up the Starbux uniform, but she had taken off her green apron and nametag.

Shu let out a sheepish smile and rubbed the back of her neck. "I wish I could have dressed better, but my schedule's pretty packed..."

Qing shook his head. "It's fine, Miss Yozora." He gave her a reassuring smile and said, "It's our interest in Myth Inc. to meet potential candidates as they truly are instead of under false pretenses in any case."

Shu nodded. "I gotcha! Need to make sure that there aren't any fakers just trying to get in for the fame, right?"

"Indeed." Qing flipped his notebook to another blank page and then wrote 'Shu Yozora' at the top of the page. At the same time, he subtly placed down a privacy formation to prevent any eavesdropping from nosy onlookers. When that was done, he looked at Shu and said, "Then, shall we start?"

"Yes!"

"Very well." Qing placed his pen on the blank page and then said, "Now, could you please begin by telling me why you've decided to apply for our company?"

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