When Sheng Jiaoyang left the airport, she was immediately swamped by fans. She never announced her journey, so she was a bit astonished by how many fans there were.
“Alright, alright, don’t crowd the hall!” Somebody from within the crowd shouted out.
Sheng Jiaoyang turned to look toward the direction of the voice and saw the leader of her fans, her classmate Liu Lu standing at the back. Liu Lu gave her a smile.
“Jiaojiao, I love you so much~”
“Er Jiao, you are our pride!”
“I really, really missed you~”
Sheng Jiaoyang signed autographs as she listened to her fan’s excited declarations. Once in a while, she even replied to some of her fans.
“Jiaojiao, I’m your fan, Xiao Mei. I’m currently an intern reporter, hehe. Because I reported on your involvement with Prince Wight of L Country, I got my contract renewed!” A cute girl said softly as she handed over a notebook for her to sign. She seemed especially excited.
“Huh?” Sheng Jiaoyang was startled. She didn’t know that news about the birthday feast she had attended with Prince Wight had already reached China.
“I saw the news on the internet. Jiaojiao, you’re so awesome! You are even able to become Prince Wight’s friend. I even saw somebody post a picture of Prince Wight personally coming to the airport to see you off earlier this afternoon.”
Sheng Jiaoyang laughed. The internet was just too fast.
It was already getting late, so Sheng Jiaoyang ended the impromptu signing session and bid farewell to the fans.
The fans escorted her to her car.
Xu Ping was also in the car, and she smiled when Sheng Jiaoyang entered. “Congratulations.”
“Why are you congratulating me?”
“Right now, almost everyone recognises you. Even though you travelled for the finals of National Supermodel, you unexpectedly ended up in Prince Wight’s birthday party, and even gained his affections.”
Sheng Jiaoyang took out her phone and went online. She didn’t even need to search hard before all kinds of news about her popped up.
“Before news about you attending Prince Wight’s birthday banquet appeared, your Weibo comment section was like a disaster zone. Even Qu Wen and Gu Zhou’s fans joined the haters to bash you,” Xu Ping said.
Sheng Jiaoyang also saw the comments. Gu Zhou’s fans probably came to scold her because they felt she had been ‘entangled’ with Gu Zhou for too long. From the scandal when she had just debuted to their advertisements together to filming a movie together. And now, they were even starring in the same drama. Many people assumed she was just relying on Gu Zhou this entire time.
This was the downside to fame. Although there were definitely many people who liked her, there were even more people who disliked her. The speed at which she became popular probably displeased many people.
“Wait till more news about you attending Prince Wight’s birthday banquet is released. Then, nobody would believe you don’t have the qualifications to act together with Gu Zhou and Qu Wen,” Xu Ping continued.
Sheng Jiaoyang smiled indifferently.
Xu Ping also smiled, “But seriously, by attending a foreign prince’s birthday banquet, your whole image has changed into that of an elegant, high-end woman. By now, nothing you do is surprising. We wouldn’t even be surprised if you won Best Actress of the Year.”
“Oh right, has the second season of the Redeeming series premiered?” Sheng Jiaoyang suddenly asked.
“It has premiered, but it isn’t very popular. It’s already been a while since we’ve first released news of it, and it still hasn’t become popular. In the past, they even boasted that it’ll be more popular than the first season. It must be really humiliating for them now!”
“Oh, I remember I mentioned before that I would fire that what’s-her-name manager after the movie was finished.”
“Yu Hong,” Xu Ping reminded her.
“Oh, Yu Hong. Tell Li Yu to fire her tomorrow. Since she dared to walk all over me, she should experience the feeling of being stepped on herself.”
Xu Ping could finally let off some steam. She had always found people like Yu Hong unpleasant to the eye. Back then, when she was in another company, she was pushed into a corner by people like Yu Hong. She had painstakingly raised up an artist, but as soon as they got famous, they were taken away by those types of people. Thus, she had to go through the bitter work of developing yet another artist, while those people got to enjoy the success of her hard work.
Sure enough, the bitterness she had endured bore sweet fruits today. If she had chosen to be like the others back then and played foul for benefits, she probably wouldn’t have been chosen to become Jiaojiao’s manager.
Once Sheng Jiaoyang reached home, she didn’t do anything but relax. She wanted to make sure that she could attend the movie premiere tomorrow with a well-rested and positive mindset. After all, this was her first real performance on the big screen. Director Steve’s movie didn’t count as she only acted in a minor role, and her appearance in the film was so short it couldn’t be any shorter. Originally, she didn’t even have the qualifications to attend the premiere.
Right now, it was still a bit chilly, so Sheng Jiaoyang chose a light coloured evening dress and layered it with a black and white plaid topcoat. She then called over a makeup artist to put on a fresh and clean makeup look for her, before she left for the premiere in the van.
When they arrived at the venue, the number of fans and reporters present exceeded her expectations.
When the director and main cast came onto the stage, the cheers and shouts almost blew the roof off.
Cen Jin whispered to Gu Zhou, “Your foresight is the best.”
Not only did the female lead he invited have excellent acting skills, but she also had amazing publicity. Cen Jin felt that no matter how much they invested in promoting the movie, it still wouldn’t compare to the news about Jiaojiao.
Gu Zhou didn’t blink even in front of countless camera flashes, and wore a fitting smile on his face from start to finish.
The presenter played a few icebreaker games before starting the question and answer segment. The reporters below the stage all became even more excited as they threw sharp questions at them consecutively.
For all the questions not concerning the movie, they kicked the questions back to the reporter like they were kicking a ball. They would only answer questions about the movie.
Sheng Jiaoyang became the focus of the reporters’ questions. When it was her turn, the first question directed to her was about how she knew Prince Wight. It clearly had nothing to do with the movie, and so she only briefly answered it. After being attacked with all kinds of personal questions, she cleverly changed the topic and brought everyone’s attention back to the movie.
When she was asked how she had such a good relationship with Gu Zhou, Sheng Jiaoyang only said two words: “He’s nice.”
Bam, a nice guy card was just given to Gu Zhou.
And the question the reporter asked Gu Zhou was: “What’s your personal opinion of Xu Jiaojiao?”
Gu Zhou glanced at Sheng Jiaoyang with a smile, “She’s somebody with talent and strength. She makes things easy for her partner.”
“What do you mean by ‘makes things easy’?”
“I can answer this question,” Cen Jin took the question, “When I saw how young Jiaojiao was, I thought it would be very hard for her to master a role as complex as Chen Xi’s. However, I was wrong. Jiaojiao is incredibly gifted and serious about acting. She almost never goes out of character, and her scenes are usually finished in just one or two takes.”
After the Q&A was done, everybody went to the movie hall to watch it together.
When the movie started, everyone fell silent.
The creative staff sat at the very front.
As the producer and the male lead, Gu Zhou sat in the very middle. To his right was Cen Jin, and to his left sat Sheng Jiaoyang.
It was actually Sheng Jiaoyang’s first time watching the whole movie.
A woman’s monologue started the movie: “Even if I could start my life all over again, I would still choose to come here to voluntarily teach.”
The scene lit up as a field of green came into view. It was a wide-lens shot and the camera swiftly zoomed in, focusing on a tall and slender girl carrying a suitcase.
This girl was Sheng Jiaoyang’s character, Chen Xi.
The scene quickly changed into a field with a few small and crude huts. There was only one classroom where a dozen or so thin and dark-skinned children sat listening. Up in front, the clean and simple yet elegantly dressed Chen Xi posed a stark contrast to the kids and the impoverished surroundings.
Class was soon over, and Chen Xi walked the kids out of the class. As they were leaving, one of the youngest children tripped on a stone and fell, so Chen Xi brought the child home, while taking the chance to conduct a family visit.
The child lived in a village situated on a hill. Chen Xi found that some of the families were very strange. When she looked through the windows, she could clearly see that some kids were already old enough to go to school, and yet their families refused to send their children to study.
When she returned to the school, she brought up the issue with the only other teacher, who was also taking the role of a cook. The teacher just sighed and shook his head, telling her to ignore it.
The more he was like that, the more Chen Xi wanted those children to go to school. Hence, she went to their families to persuade them.
During one of Chen Xi’s constant visits to persuade the families, she saw a man sneakily following behind one of the family heads she had been wanting to persuade. Just as she was about to warn the family head, the suspicious man approached her and covered her mouth. She tried to scream, but could only release muffled noises.
After the family head was far away and couldn’t hear anything even if she shouted, the tall man released her mouth, but he didn’t let go of her.
“Who are you? What are you trying to do?” Chen Xi’s face was filled with panic.
“From your accent, you don’t seem to be from here. Why are you here?” the man answered by asking her another question.
“I came here to teach,” Chen Xi said anxiously.
The man’s tense face became relaxed, but he still didn’t let go of Chen Xi. Instead, he told her to bring him to where she lived. Chen Xi originally refused, but when she saw the man’s face darken, she could only obediently lead the way.
At Chen Xi’s house, the man took out his ID and introduced himself to be Zhang Pojun. He was a policeman that was currently on vacation.
At the end of the movie, Chen Xi witnessed Zhang Pojun’s death in a hit-and-run by the criminals and finally decided to return to where she had begun to teach. She gave every student new bags and clothes, and became their teacher once again.
At the start, the audience couldn’t help but laugh at the turn of events that made the female lead mistake the male lead for a villain. The middle act, where the female lead helped the male lead investigate the truth about child trafficking, was heart-pounding and left the audience sitting at the edge of their seats with suspense. At the same time, seeing the male and female lead’s tacit understanding and intimate interactions made the audience feel very warm and fuzzy inside. During the conclusion where the male lead died, the grief and sorrow in the scene made the audience’s noses turn stuffy as they watched the female lead return to where she began… alone. A bitter sense of disappointment and loss welled in the audience, leaving them with a heavy feeling that lingered inside.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Kiki | Editor: Cookies | TLC: Grace
Hi all, happy 300th ROF chapterversary! Unfortunately, we are out of stockpile for the highest tier sponsors, so there are no bonus chapters this time.
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