At this point, Sheng Jiaoyang and Shen Zhining’s relationship was pretty much known. Although they didn’t make a formal announcement about it, their affection was evident from the photos secretly shot by strangers.
Eating, strolling, even when Sheng Jiaoyang got off her car at Cen Jin’s wrap party, Shen Zhining could be seen by the window in photographs. Right now, anybody that followed her news would know she had a boyfriend that stuck to her like glue.
Quite a few people had already arrived at the banquet hall. Everyone wore formal wear and glided with cups in their hands.
When Sheng Jiaoyang entered, a large number of stares fell on her.
“Our female lead’s here, now our whole crew is present.” With a smile on his face, Cen Jin clapped his hands.
Sheng Jiaoyang was surprised to see the person standing beside Cen Jin.
“Lin Yan, why did you come?” Sheng Jiaoyang walked over.
Lin Yan gave her a slight smile. The smile on his elegant and noble face made one of the waitresses swoon, and she almost spilled the wine she was pouring for Sheng Jiaoyang.
“I missed you,” he said.
Sheng Jiaoyang’s heart thumped, but only once, and with more embarrassment than anything.
“Ou Yang’s our important second male lead, how could he miss such an important wrap party!” Cen Jin exclaimed.
Gu Zhou walked over.
“Now that everyone has arrived, let’s start the group photos.”
Gu Zhou’s words were perfectly timed. It was the best time to take photos right now. Otherwise, if anybody had to leave midway, it’d be difficult to find another opportunity.
Cen Jin had the staff help assemble the crew members together before he began his speech on how he hoped the movie would do well in the box office. He then opened the bottle of champagne and poured it down the champagne tower, as the elegant color glistened under the bright hall’s lights.
Everybody gathered behind the champagne tower for a group photo before dispersing into groups of twos and threes to chat.
“Cen Jin, you took a risky move choosing your actors. The female lead and second male lead are both new to the screen and Xu Jiaojiao is always on the headlines. Not to mention, she only had a small idol drama role under her belt.”
“Senior, Xu Jiaojiao can’t be counted as someone new to the screen. She has even acted under Director Steve. Although she has little acting experience, her current acting skills wouldn’t lose to anybody in our crew. She’s a natural born actress.” Cen Jin faced his senior. Although his manners were still very respectful, he was already starting to become more well-known in the entertainment field. He was confident, even against veteran directors.
“Where did such a handsome second male lead come from? Why doesn’t he look like somebody from the entertainment circle?”
“He really isn’t somebody from the entertainment circle, he’s Xu Jiaojiao’s friend. Remember how I got ghosted by an actor? It just so happened that he came to check up on Xu Jiaojiao and got nabbed by me,” Cen Jin laughed.
“He’s not from the entertainment circle? You really are willful, can he act?”
“He’s perfect for the role.” As for the relationship between his second male lead and female lead, he didn’t care. The movie’s filming was really filled with twists and turns, and now it was finally finished.
“If you find a good female lead actress, come see me. I’m preparing a movie to be debuted next lunar new year and I need somebody with a modelesque figure and good acting skills.”
“Perhaps you should ask Xu Jiaojiao. She’s both a supermodel and an actress. She fits your requirements perfectly.” Because Cen Jin had almost replaced Xu Jiaojiao for another actress, he still felt a bit guilty and hurried to recommend her.
“Okay, I’ll give her a notice when I start casting auditions.”
“You still want auditions? Teacher, could you even find anybody more fitting than her? Not many actresses are models and not many supermodels are actresses.”
The veteran director looked at Cen Jin suspiciously, “Why are you so persistent on Xu Jiaojiao?”
“I’m not, I’m just speaking the truth.” Cen Jin laughed before hurriedly changing the topic. He then asked about the veteran director’s new movie plot and details.
Meanwhile, Sheng Jiaoyang was now alone with Lin Yan.
“I don’t know why, but I had a bad feeling before I came here today.” Lin Yan stared at her deeply.
Your intuition is correct. Sheng Jiaoyang silently thought.
“Lin Yan, I…”
She hadn’t finished speaking when Lin Yan gently tapped her lips, stopping her. He seemed to have gotten an electric shock as he quickly retrieved his hand, but it was enough to break her speech.
“If I had known that it’d be like this, I wouldn’t have told Shen Zhining your identity.” Lin Yan’s eyes turned gloomy and his smile vanished, leaving behind a sullen and regretful face.
Plans could never keep up with change- he hadn’t thought that his own actions would backfire on him, nor did he expect Shen Zhining’s feelings to Sheng Jiaoyang to be so deep, creating an opportunity for him to exploit. He had such good cards yet he had misplayed them and created a total mess.
“Lin Yan, even if you didn’t tell him, there would inevitably be a day where I personally told him. Everything in the world is linked to fate- there must be both affinity and fate, only when there’s both can two be together.” She realised that when she faced Lin Yan now, she was calmer than she had ever been before.
Finally, she could let go of her feelings for Lin Yan.
With a heavy heart, Lin Yan stared at her before closing his eyes. Truthfully, he wasn't willing to accept this bitter outcome. It was like quicksand escaping right through his fingers. Yet, he couldn't stop it and could only watch as she grew more and more distant from him.
“Lin Yan,” Sheng Jiaoyang smiled with relief, “We’re all adults now and we have to be logical. I don’t want to walk in muddy waters when I’m with somebody. In the future… let’s not see each other anymore, alright?”
Lin Yan was stunned as his heart suddenly contracted. He asked in a tense voice, “Not even as friends?”
“As soon as I returned to the country, I had already decided to cut things off. Moreover,” Sheng Jiaoyang paused, a smile appearing on her face, “He doesn’t like us seeing each other.”
She stared at Lin Yan and added, “These days, I care about him very much.”
Lin Yan stared at her. Although his face appeared calm, the tight grip he had on his cup revealed a glimpse of his true mood; the veins on his knuckles seemed close to bursting.
“I’m sorry,” Sheng Jiaoyang softly said.
Lin Yan smiled bitterly, “I should be the one to apologise, not you.”
If he hadn’t been so hesitant and had so many misgivings, things would have turned out differently. Even though they were face to face, it was as if they had half a century’s worth of distance in between them.
“Lin Yan, I hope you will find your own happiness soon,” Sheng Jiaoyang murmured sincerely.
There was a bit of reluctance deep down but they were already over. Once a decision was made, hesitation and longing would only hurt both sides.
She could tell Lin Yan goodbye in such a forthcoming manner only because there was already someone else in her heart. If it was her past self, she would still want to be friends even if they couldn’t be a couple. Back then, she felt that it was enough to watch over each other as friends because she couldn’t let him go.
But now, she could calmly say, “Let’s not see each other again.”
“Can you send me to the airport later as a final farewell?” Lin Yan spoke lightly.
Sheng Jiaoyang hesitated but ultimately replied heartlessly, “I’m sorry, my boyfriend would get jealous.”
Lin Yan revealed a smile uglier than weeping as his lips twitched. “Then I won’t force you.”
Sheng Jiaoyang lowered her eyes. She would be lying if she said she wasn’t emotional. After all, he was the one she had loved for so many years. However, she had no regrets. For years, she had fought hard. Now that she has found somebody she can truly feel safe with, there was nothing to regret.
Goodbye, Lin Yan.
Sheng Jiaoyang could only watch Lin Yan’s back fade from her view.
It’s better not to meet again. The best ending is for us to go on with our lives separately under the same blue sky.
Her heart still had some stuffy, lingering emotions. It felt like she was lost and disappointed, yet relieved.
“My, Ou Yang left?” Cen Jin was walking by Sheng Jiaoyang when he noticed Lin Yan’s absence and stopped.
“He’s very busy.” That was all Sheng Jiaoyang could say.
“Oh, so he left. Well then, don’t just stand there alone, I’ll bring you to meet my teacher. He’s actually preparing to make a new movie and there’s a role in it that fits you well.”
Sheng Jiaoyang couldn’t afford to think about Lin Yan again, so she immediately went to catch up with Cen Jin.
After the wrap party was finished, Sheng Jiaoyang briefly met Cen Jin’s teacher and left a good impression.
When she got in the car and saw Shen Zhining, she relaxed.
“I… saw Lin Yan.” Leaning on Shen Zhining’s back, Sheng Jiaoyang thought about it and finally still decided to tell him.
Shen Zhining’s eyes turned dark. He couldn’t not care as Lin Yan was the one she’d liked for so many years.
“I cleared things up with him and even told him that we won’t see each other again because…” Sheng Jiaoyang turned to look at Shen Zhining, “I care more about you.”
Sheng Zhining was briefly startled before a smile he just couldn’t repress formed at his lips, and a grin appeared on his face.
He raised a hand to touch her face. He wanted to kiss her deeply, but today, he kissed her lips as if he was kissing a precious jewel; not daring to use any bit of force.
“Are you drunk?” He could smell the faint alcohol in her breath.
“I just drank a bit, I’m still sober.” She was still on her period so she didn’t dare to be so unbridled.
Shen Zhining pressed his forehead against hers as their eyes met. They were so close to one another that their lashes were about to touch.
“There’s still two days.”
Sheng Jiaoyang blinked, “I know.”
It was two days from his birthday.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Kiki | Editor: Grace | TLC: Grace