155 Now This Is Epic
Normally, one would burn the midnight oil to finish it, but Ye Shuang only needed half an hour. When the taxi reached her hotel, she had already flipped through 'Ai Song'.
Xiao Zhu Hou knew his history well. The book crossed 150 years of the Nan Song Dynasty, starting from Song Gaozong's congregation of power to the falling out with Yue Fei. This not-so-well-known dynasty came alive in Xiao Zhu Hou's hands. From the corrupt government that depended on the Jin clansmen to the various heroes that were active during the time, it was an epic tale.
It was not unusual for Luo Mingxin to be interested in this novel; Ye Shuang thought it was quite well-written as well. However, loving the novel and agreeing to help shoot it were two different things. Promoting the country's history was important, but preserving her own secret was even more important. Therefore, after Ye Shuang exited her app, she walked into her room, lay down in bed, and tossed the issue out of her mind.
The next day, Ye Shuang dragged Little Brother Ye to Luo Mingxin, who had promised to help her. After dropping the man with the assistant, Ye Shuang went to the backstage to hide. Little Brother Ye's activities were handled by the assistant. After all, Celebrity Luo's face was more useful than Ye Shuang.
"I'll be sure to take many pictures and watch the movie on your behalf." Little Brother Ye stood beside the assistant obediently and waved farewell at Ye Shuang. "Bro, don't worry! If there's a problem, I'll go to Brother Luo."
Luo Mingxin, who was in the middle of his make-up, shot him a look. Who is your Brother Luo‽
"Don't trouble your Brother Luo too much. If you can deal with it yourself, do it. Only go trouble him when the problem is too big," Ye Shuang said seriously.
The order can only be understood as—don't be too afraid to move about, have fun, if there's any problem come and find me… Luo Mingxin felt like raising his hand to slap his forehead. No, no. I'm being too pessimistic. Perhaps that's not what he meant…
"Celebrity Luo, please don't move. You're going to ruin the foundation," the make-up artist reminded him. Luo Mingxin was going to show up at the premier as his character, who was younger than his actual age, so he needed the foundation to cover up the lines on his face.
Hearing that, Little Brother Ye looked at Luo Mingxin and then at Ye Shuang. Then, his expression openly said, Sigh, my brother is so handsome that he doesn't even need make-up.
Luo Mingxin, who saw this, felt his heart chill over. This kid sure is that con artist's biological brother.
After handing her child to the nanny, Ye Shuang took the cab to head for the premier location. She asked for lunch and then went into the breakroom to prepare. Likely because they had gotten used to this kind of event, the workers on duty were all quality workers. There were female workers who blushed when they saw Brother Shuang, but no one came in secret to ask for a picture or signature.
The breakroom came with a television, computer, and couch; it was as comfortable as her hotel home. Naturally, this meant that Ye Shuang was not be bored. She asked for the Wi-Fi password and used it to surf the internet on her laptop.
She only played for half an hour before Director Zhou called Ye Shuang to scold her. He had just heard from Luo Mingxin, the tattletale, that she would not be walking down the red carpet.
After dealing with that, Ye Shuang received the call from Little Brother Ye, who tattletaled on the tattletale. "Bro, this Brother Luo is awful. He's being given the interview but keeps trying to pile compliments on you."
"Trying to force me to continue this career‽" Ye Shuang scoffed. "I understand. After the interview is finished, tell your Brother Luo that this trick will not work on me. If he pushes hard enough, I'll tell the world we're in a relationship and that's why he's so adamant on recommending me."
Little Brother Ye chuckled to himself. After he hung up, he gave Luo Mingxin's assistant, who stood beside him, a gloating gaze. The assistant turned to look at Celebrity Luo, who was still doing the interview, and wanted to cry for the man. Bro, come back, we're not match for their shamelessness.
This continued until the start of the event. Ye Shuang's phone kept ringing from various calls. Ye Shuang did not mind it that much; she put the Bluetooth mic into her ear, and she answered them while she was playing. It provided quite a distraction. When it was finally 2 pm, some of the people from Director Zhou's crew arrived backstage. Some wandered off to other breakrooms while others came into Ye Shuang's breakroom to mingle with her.
The assistant director seemed to know the place well. He tapped on the remote, and the television showed the red carpet and screening hall.
"Xiao Ye, you're not going to fight for some exposure‽ When Ol' Zhou heard you're in hiding, he was so angry that he almost fainted." The assistant director smiled and sat beside Ye Shuang.
Ye Shuang shoved the laptop into her bag and looked at the people who were walking along the red carpet with interest. Then she replied with a smile, "There's no reason for me to go take the exposure away from them. After all, I do not plan to join this industry."
Although she had repeated that many times already, the number of people who believed her was exceedingly small. That was partly because of her appearance and also because everyone had seen how good she was at acting. From how they saw it, Brother Shuang entering the business was inevitable, and he was just being humble for now.
However, they did not expect the man to not even walk down the premier's red carpet. This was different from his reluctance to appear when Director Zhou was looking for him on the internet. Other people did not think too much of it, but the assistant director frowned and asked in a serious tone, "Are you really not going to join this industry? This is such a waste… Then what do you want to do with your life? Why don't you tell me‽"
"Director Zhou already knows what I do for a living." Ye Shuang smiled. "To be honest, I have no interest in the life of a star. I especially want to leave my house without being crowded by fan; I want to do stuff without my motives being questioned on the internet; I want to live my life without being watched by paparazzi…"
"Everyone has their own goal in life." The assistant director sighed. If the man was really that averse to living his life in the public eye, the desire to hide was understandable. After all, not everyone wanted to be a star.
Of course, many people wanted to be a cut above the rest, but certain people were rational enough to calculate the sacrifice that they would have to make and whether it would be worth it or not. Some gave up after their bottom line was challenged, but others powered on for the sake of achieving their goal.
Ye Shuang looked at the man and asked with a smile, "Assistant director, you've spoken to Celebrity Luo before this, right?"
The assistant director was shocked. He touched his face and chuckled. "Even though I'm not an actor, it shouldn't be that obvious, should it?"
"It's mainly because his assistant told me the same thing yesterday. I assumed he was too drunk to overhear our conversation, but thinking back, I believe the man wasn't even drunk at the time." Ye Shuang shook her head. She could read expressions, but she could not read a person's heart.
She was just trying to fish for a reaction, but she hit the jackpot. It looked like that Luo Mingxin would not give up that easily. Ye Shuang could not help by wonder why he thought she would be a good fit for the role. The assistant director did not know what Ye Shuang was thinking, but since he had been exposed and he knew Ye Shuang could not be persuaded, he changed the topic into something lighter.
Before the premier, there were countless speeches and interviews. It was as boring as Ye Shuang thought. Other than when their idols were speaking, most of the audience had their faces glued to their phones. Only the reporters stayed alert, recording the event for the news.
The crew did come to Ye Shuang's breakroom. First they came to ask the assistant director to join the panel, and then they came to ask for Ye Shuang. The latter rejected it firmly. She focused on reading the posts that Little Brother Ye was sharing online.
"I'm at a movie premier. Don't envy me, I'm a legend."
"Look! Celebrity Luo Mingxin's personal signature."
"Look! A premier-version of the movie CD! Limited edition."
The comments were either mocking him for his showing off or begging him to take them next time. Ye Shuang had a wicked time reading them; it was more fun than the premier at least.
Just as Ye Shuang was having the time of her life, there was chaos on-screen. The workers in the room switched the mute off, and then the reporters' voices came through.
"Celebrity Luo, there's an online news saying you have a midnight date with a man, is that real?"
"The man personally carried you into your car; what do you have to explain for this picture‽"
"Does this mean you have a close relationship?"
Ye Shuang raised her head with shock. She had just been saying that for fun; she did not really intend to ruin Luo Mingxin's name. So, who did release such a horrible rumor‽
The breakroom broke into chaos, and everyone's face dropped. They soon found the picture that the reporters were talking about. The workers' faces fell again.
They knew the place well; the night before, they had visited there. It was not weird that Ye Shuang was carrying Luo Mingxin into his car. After all, the man was a better drinker than Celebrity Luo. It was not his fault, right‽
However, this was insider news. Even if they provided an explanation, people would not buy it. A planned scandal could help with ticket sales, but if it was a notorious scandal, it might not be a good thing.
"This has to be Tian Mo Media's doing!" one of the more senior workers grumbled.
"Tian Mo?" Ye Shuang understood it immediately. Luo Mingxin's contract was ending next week. Since they had squeezed Luo Mingxin dry, they were planning to ruin his name before letting him go.