It was the year of 1998, and a seventeen year old Yeo Min-Hyung had just finished his 11th year of high school. Excited for a party that one of his friends was having, he quickly rushed home to get ready. Although he wasn't of age to drink, he went into his mother's alcohol storage and grabbed as much beer as he could pack into his backpack.
Later that night, Min-Hyung was drinking the night away alongside his classmates. After finishing seven beers, the young adult was completely out of it. At some time in the night, he had met a young woman who unbeknownst to him was the goddess Asteria. After a drunk Min-Hyung continuously followed Asteria around flirting with her, she led him into the bathroom where the two began to have sex. The next morning Min-Hyung woke up at 1:00pm, too drunk to properly function. He was butt naked and after putting on his boxers, he left the house, leaving his clothes behind due to the extremely strong scent of alcohol on them.
He arrived back home and in order to avoid his mother, climbed through the window and fell back asleep in his bed. He didn't wake up until the next morning, and what he woke up to was a giant surprise. His mother was shaking his shoulder and screaming for him to wake up, only to eventually be dragged to the living room. With sleep in his eyes, he saw a baby in a basket and quickly took out a note that was attached to the baby's blanket. After reading it he learned that the baby was his. Min-Hyung's mother was full of anger, and it was during this time where she kicked him out of the house.
Min-Hyung was unsure to go, and with a new son to take care of, he had to find a place where they could go. With the minimal money his mother gave him, he managed to afford a boat to Jeju Island, where his uncle Sun-Woo lived. Sun-Woo gladly took in Min-Hyung and his son, telling him he could stay as long as he needed. Later that night, Min-Hyung decided to name his son Kyung-Tae.
Kyung-Tae grew up constantly in a struggle. With Min-Hyung always struggling to find a proper job, and Sun-Woo getting laid off, times were tough for the three men. Kyung-Tae was often bullied up until his seventh birthday by the older kids, as he was always wearing clothes that were either too small or too big for him, as they were always given to the family by Sun-Woo's friends. Eventually Min-Hyung had gotten a teachers degree when Kyung-Tae turned nine, and he then pulled him out of school and began home schooling him.
With both Min-Hyung and Sun-Woo getting stable jobs, money just kept on coming. Min-Hyung began to neglect his duties as a father, deciding work was more important. This forced Kyung-Tae to become a very quiet child, he would just stay in his room and take the online classes that a home schooled student would take. With his father neglecting him and Sun-Woo sleeping, a twelve year old Kyung-Tae took it upon himself to go adventure around the island. While adventuring around the island, Kyung-Tae decided it was time for him to leave his home, he then ran back to his house and left with all of his clothes. While on his way to find somewhere better to stay, he ran into three telekhines. The telekhines attacked the unarmed Kyung-Tae, only for him to be saved by a young woman who just so happened to also be a child of Asteria. After the telekhines had been killed, South Korean pirates docked their boat and began to rummage through the woman's house, raping and killing her in the process. When one of the pirates found a scared Kyung-Tae, he quickly knocked him out and dragged him onto their ship.
While waking up aboard the pirates' ship, he met hostage other hostages named Ahn Cheol-Su and Park Hyun-Ki. They were thirteen and fifteen years old, respectively. Their gang of pirates, called as the Gangchi or "Sea Lions", were allied with the Kkangpae or the South Korean mafia.
It wasn't long until Kyung-Tae had everything figured out. He learnt the ways of the Gangchi, especially when it came to raiding towns and villages across the islands in South Korea. Everything that they wore, ate, and used were taken from their victims. However when it came time for Kyung-Tae to have to be the one to kill someone, he didn't do it, resulting in him often being punished. They called their way of living as "paying the iron price". Instead of him always participating in these raids and murder sprees, he would always hide behind something, waiting for the rest to finish.
A year later, the Gangchi squared off against their rivaling pirate gang, the Taepung. Cheol-Su, Kyung-Tae, and Hyun-Ki, now the best of friends, tried to smuggle out one of the yachts but were drugged and incarcerated by the crew members. As a result, the Taepung got hold of three new slaves and planned on selling them to a wealthy drug dealer, Choi Bon-Hwa, at a price of almost 500,000 South Korean won per head in Busan.
Aside from drug trafficking, Kyung-Tae, Cheol-Su, and Hyun-Ki were exposed to a lot more crimes under Bon-Hwa's command. Having background on crimes such as larceny, fraud, and even murder, the three teenagers didn't have much difficulty doing what was asked of them, and instead of Kyung-Tae constantly sitting out of the crimes, he was forced into a position where he had to join in on them, as there weren't as many of them participating in the crimes. Although the three were known throughout Bon-Hwa's affiliates, their true identities were only known to him.
Nevertheless, Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su still had room for doubts on what they were doing. Kyung-Tae hated the fact that he was nothing but a slave working for a greedy, fat hustler. Being the eldest, Hyun-Ki tried convincing his younger friends that it was no use escaping because Bon-Hwa had a lot of connections to other organized crime groups, both local and international. However, his two friends weren't easily swayed. Ever since then, Hyun-Ki became cold and distant to them, and was easily manipulated by Bon-Hwa.
Their activities remained the same until a chimera went bursting into Bon-Hwa's large bungalow a year later. During the chaos, Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su used the opportunity to finally kill Bon-Hwa. They planned to fake their deaths, attribute their master's death to the chimera attack, and escape. Hyun-Ki, however, threatened to expose their secrets if they ever did leave. If it weren't for the chimera killing him, Kyung-Tae would have watched as Cheol-Su would have done the honors. The chimera knocked the two boys unconscious, until a satyr arrived at the scene to kill the monster. The satyr brought the two demigods to Camp Half-Blood, where they were claimed and given briefing on the whole Greek god thing.
Both Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su were unhappy from the beginning. But eventually the two found hope when they met a child of Hermes who eventually helped them track down the Gangchi and Taepung. With the two million South Korean won they stole from Bon-Hwa's vault during their escape, the child of Hermes set up a dead pool of sorts. Using a coded list of the Taepung's current members, they intended to lure the Gangchi into killing their rival pirate gang for the bounty. When they had communication with the Gangchi, they used the monikers Sang-Eo and Yuseong, respectively. Once the Taepung had been eliminated, Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su would ambush the Gangchi.
After setting up the plan and training at camp for several months, they went back to South Korea. The Taepung's ships were last seen scouting the island of Ulleung-do. With audio tapes sent to the Gangchi, Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su instructed them to go there. Before payment was made, the Gangchi needed visual confirmation of their kill. Nonetheless, the two secretly followed them.
Once the Taepung was ambushed by the Gangchi in Ulleung-do, Kyung-Tae and Cheol-Su joined the fight. One by one, members of both pirate gangs fell. The air reeked not only of blood, but also of retribution. It was the two demigods' moment of glory. Although Cheol-Su enjoyed the savage massacre due to the fact his family got killed by the pirates, Kyung-Tae wasn't as excited about it. However, when Kyung-Tae had turned around to see a gun being pointed at his chest, it was too late for him to run. When the bullet hit, he collapsed to the ground already dead. Now fighting for his best friend, Cheol-Su killed the last of the pirates and tried reviving Kyung-Tae. Unfortunately, he wasn't able to do so. In the end, he went back to camp, leaving Kyung-Tae's body on the ship.
Only ten minutes later, Asteria had taken pity upon her son, as she saw what a terrible life he had lived and she then revived him as a star spirit. Kyung-Tae managed to get into a small boat that was attached to the side of the Gangchi's boat. He set off towards the main land, and upon arrival he was extremely exhausted. After falling asleep on the beach for two hours, he woke up in the house of a satyr. The satyr then helped Kyung-Tae get to camp, giving him enough money to fly to New York. Already knowing the location of camp, Kyung-Tae arrived at 12:00am that night. His first instinct was to immediately find Cheol-Su.