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Easily Set Aflame (Web Novel) - Chapter 2.3 — A Forced Cameo Role (3)

Chapter 2.3 — A Forced Cameo Role (3)

This chapter is updated by Wuxia.Blog

All around them, it was unusually quiet. The indistinct noise of a car driving by could even be heard.

It was merely a small action but it very easily tugged at everyone’s heart. Jia He gazed unblinkingly at him. All she could remember was that she did not have any lines, but she could not for the life of her remember what she should do next. She could only lament silently in her heart that they likely would need to do another take yet again.

Yi Wenze’s expression was as it should be. With very natural motions, he brought his hand back down. “For this matter today, I shall not affix responsibility and punishment anymore. And there is also no need for you to stay here in the Prince’s manor any longer.” With those words, he bent over, picked up his “son,” and left the hall, his manner cool and distant.

In that entire hall, only Jia He remained, her face stained with tears, lonesomely standing in one spot.

……

“Okay!” Pleasure was on the director’s face as he rose from his seat. “We can pack up for the day.”

Tears still lingered on Jia He’s cheeks, and she gave a couple of awkward swipes at them. When she had stepped over to the threshold, Qiao Qiao straightaway enveloped her tightly in her duvet coat, saying, “You sure are talented. You somehow took a scene of severing a relationship and nearly acted it out as one of in-love sweethearts facing separation and death. Good thing your idol reacted fast enough on his feet.”

“It was really bad?” Jia He had not been feeling confident in herself in the first place, and now with Qiao Qiao’s words, she felt even more uneasy.

“It was okay.” Qiao Qiao stuffed to her a cup of hot water. “Why think so much about it? It’s just a cameo anyway. Do you really think the viewers will be watching you in this scene? They’ll all be staring at Yi Wenze.”

Despite that being the truth, she, this unknown extra who had worked so earnestly and done her best in her role, nevertheless felt that her chest was tight with glumness.

When everyone was one after the other leaving the film set, Yi Wenze still stood by the monitor, talking on his phone. In contrast to the calm, easygoing smile he normally wore, his brows were currently pulled together in a slight frown, and as he spoke, he massaged his temple. Jia He stole a quick look at him before she dragged her feet out the door with Qiao Qiao.

Because he had a promotional event for a movie of his, in the three days that followed, Yi Wenze requested time off from the production and returned to Hong Kong.

Prior to his departure, he specifically had a discussion with Director Jiang about the subsequent scenes that were still to be filmed, and left quite a bit of feedback. The outcome of that was that Xiao Ou brought ten filled, A4 pages to Jia He and, feeling rather guilty, stuffed them into her hands. Furthermore, she word for word conveyed what Director Jiang had said: “Deadline is in three days. All revisions must be completed by then.”

Xiao Ou gave a “hee hee,” then instantly hightailed from there, so quickly it was as if she was flying.

As Jia He held those papers, her eyes fixed on that stack of densely-written suggestions, a feeling suddenly arose in her that this was very similar to when she was in primary school and her teacher who had gone to do three days of continuing education at another school had purposely left a mountain of homework, for fear the students would slack off during that time…

However, grumbling was just grumbling; she was still very professional and dedicated and shut herself away for two days. Late in the night of the second day, she finally could be considered to have completed her task.

When she typed out the very last word, her spirits immediately improved immensely, and swiftly she opened up Internet Explorer. The account that Weibo automatically logged her into was the new one that she had registered just that day, and the one and only person it followed was Yi Wenze. Before she could switch over to the account that she normally used, she discovered that Yi Wenze’s Weibo, which had been inactive for an entire month, had actually been updated.

The time of posting was just this past afternoon. There was only a photograph of an airport; no text accompanied it. The black background of his Weibo and the white, afternoon daylight of the airport combined together to create a captivating colour scheme.

Out of the blue, she remembered how many years ago, when she was still a high school student, she had once spent a whole day sitting at home, cutting up magazines, and then when her entire bed was covered with clippings, she had then one at a time pasted them into a notebook. Back then, there was no Weibo, no entertainment news, no fan clubs. She could do nothing but, by herself, secretly adore that idol whom she loved. At most, she would prattle off a few words about him with her classmates. Idols of that time were truly blessed; their private lives would not be that magnified before everyone’s eyes… When the sour, the sweet, the bitter, or the spicy things of life are magnified by the camera’s lens, they all have the same taste—like that of arsenic.

Drinking poison to quench one’s thirst. That truly is the first special skill that all celebrities need to learn.

She counted the hours. From the time the photo was posted to now, it had only been six hours, but more than 1400 comments were beneath it. It would appear that her idol’s popularity could not be considered all that low. Interspersed amongst the variety of comments were quite a few that were obviously from other people within the entertainment industry, all of which were no more than a few, short, vague sentences of consolation. Yi Wenze selected only a handful of them to reply to, his words light and witty. It appeared that he was in quite a good mood.

Dragging her mouse down, Jia He read through every one of those more than one thousand comments before heading back to her own Weibo page.

There was no profile picture, personal introduction, or career description under her profile page. There was only the lone post of Idol, I’m backing you all the way! on her main page. The weird thing was, displayed beside the “Comments” icon was a “1.”

Who’d be so bored and have nothing to do that he’d comment below such daft words?

She clicked it open and brushed her eyes over it. Instantaneously, she froze in shock. Two simple words: Thank you. The person who left the comment was Yi Wenze.

A terribly uninteresting page. A silly post. But the person who left the comment was like a huge bomb and instantly blasted away the good mood that Jia He had just recovered. She straightaway shut down that webpage. After logging in again, she took a deep inhale and clicked open the comment. Still those same two words, still from that same person. She turned her eyes onto the username that she had registered. It was clearly one that could not be any more ordinary than it already was. There was nothing at all that could have given her away.

A feeling suddenly came over her, like she was watching a horror movie in the middle of the night and then felt someone touch her on the back of her neck.

On the screen of the thermostat, a pale blue “24oC” was flashing nonstop. It should be a very comfortable temperature, but her heart felt as if one minute, it was in an ice cave and another minute, a fiery pit. Jia He stood up, but then, not knowing what she even wanted to do, she could only sit back down again and plop her forehead dispiritedly onto her keyboard in an effort to calm herself.

Because her forehead was pressing down too hard, her Word file began rapidly recording countless amounts of gibberish. In a blink, rows of it had piled up already. The document moved to the next page. The gibberish continued…

It was not until twenty minutes later, with Qiao Qiao’s sudden appearance, that her computer was saved from this.

“We’re going to do karaoke.” After striding in through the door, Qiao Qiao went without prompting to help her turn off the computer but ended up discovering the screen filled with gobbledygook. “Hey, missy, are you too stressed, or have you been possessed by a ghost? Why’d you type something like that?”

Jia He hurriedly closed the lid of her laptop. “You just got back from Shanghai. You’re not tired?”

“Director Jiang said you’ve been working away busily for two days and told me to bring you out to have some fun.” Qiao Qiao did not keep pursuing the question. “Let’s go. The ride’s downstairs.”

Taking in Qiao Qiao’s slightly reddened eyes, Jia He knew she was merely taking advantage of this chance to vent some feelings. Jia He reckoned that she had likely been toyed with again.

The lovelorn get the highest priority. And so she, as someone who had merely been triggered by her own humiliating action, could do nothing but put on her down coat and get hurried by Qiao Qiao all the way out the hotel. Only when she was getting into the vehicle did she notice that it was fully loaded with people. The assistant director, Cheng Hao, hastily got up and gave up his seat to Qiao Qiao and Jia He while he went to sit beside another person, squishing in so much that that person grimaced.

“You sure are big and important.” Jia He bent in close to Qiao Qiao’s ear. “You get in a bad mood and then drag along so many people, making us all go to all this effort with you.

Qiao Qiao gave her an innocent look. “I already told you, it’s to help you relieve your stress.”

Jia He decided she would just give up trying to argue with her.

Most of the shops on either side of the road were already closed, but their signs still shone and twinkled. In this type of frigid weather, there were considerably fewer tourists. By the time the vehicle had snaked its way to the KTV bar, Qiao Qiao had already recovered her usual enthusiastic, energetic self, and she directed everyone to go inside. The people in the vehicle had hung out together enough that they were long familiar with one another, and they made no shows of unnecessary politeness. The moment they stepped into the private room, they began putting in their song selections with great fanfare and display. Song after song was played, and the atmosphere was particularly fun and animated.

The table was laden with four dozen bottles of beer, but in mere moments, half were destroyed.

Having faced her computer for two days, Jia He now was so exhausted she could not be bothered to fight for the microphone. She simply crammed herself into a spot beside Qiao Qiao, listening as Qiao Qiao every now and then clapped and cheered or from time to time, watching the MV, ridiculed the cheesiness of a certain acquaintance who was in the MV. All the while, Jia He was already running her new script’s character profiles through her mind, trying to plan out whether she should make use of the next several days to revise them slightly, so as to avoid doing everything last minute and bringing suffering onto herself.

Qiao Qiao suddenly gave her a nudge. “Look, look, look! It’s Tian Chu.”

By reflex, she lifted her head. The karaoke had just switched to the next song.

Beneath the brilliant sunshine, on an empty highway, a long-haired girl picked up the skirt of her black, strapless evening gown and ran towards the camera, the joy within her expression enough to make the entire world jealous. This was the MV that had brought fame to Tian Chu. Two years ago, it had been crazily popular in Mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. And it was also this song that had completely pushed her into the status of A-list celebrity.

As Jia He gazed at the shaky, swaying scene on that large screen, she all of a sudden remembered that the marriage date the media had reported was roughly around the same time that this song became hugely popular. At the time, she only knew that Yi Wenze had penned the lyrics, and therefore she had of course paid much attention to the song. However, she had not guessed the love and relationship behind it.

The song had an extremely nice melody and had once been one of her must-sings.

Yi Wenze’s lyrics were simple, not overly grandiose, but they were able to allow people to feel an intricately woven sense of happiness. Each time she sang this song, she did not even need to look at the screen, for she had long learned the lyrics by heart… Picking up a bucket of popcorn from the table and listening to the very long musical introduction, Jia He began feeling thankful that Yi Wenze was currently in Hong Kong. Otherwise, she could not even imagine what sort of situation this would be.

But, if he really had come, likely no one would be so insensitive either.

She had just grabbed a piece of popcorn and was about to toss it into her mouth when the door of their private room was unexpectedly pushed open. The sounds of the karaoke singing across the hall abruptly poured in. From the sounds, it was a girl singing “Even in Death I Will Love” at the top of her lungs. Jia He was sitting in the spot closest to the door, and the bold, brash voice that charged in sent a jolt through her. Right as she was about to kick the door closed again, she discovered that the person who just came in was A-Qing.

Yi Wenze’s assistant, A-Qing.

“I finally found you guys.” A-Qing’s face showed a look of resignation. “Qiao Qiao, why didn’t you look at your phone? You made us end up needing to go room by room until we finally fumbled our way over here. We nearly got surrounded and then chased to death.” Her hands were red from being out in the cold, and she rubbed them together vigorously to warm them.

The person behind her was blocking all the light that shone outside the doorway. He was dressed in simple, casual attire. Because he was wearing a baseball cap, the upper half of his face was slightly concealed beneath the brim and no one could see those gorgeous eyes of his. But everyone knew who he was…

In this moment, Jia He instinctively wanted to tear over and change songs. However, out of the blue, the assistant director, Cheng Hao, whose back was to the door, very obtusely jumped in and first shouted, “How come no one’s singing Tian Chu’s song?” Still not discovering that the atmosphere was already extremely awkward, he very quickly spoke again, “Need to switch to another one?”

“I’ll sing, I’ll sing.” Qiao Qiao at once took that ball and ran with it. If they were to change songs now, that truly would be ridiculously awkward.

Right after she picked up the microphone, though, she was stuck. Qiao Qiao had a very frank, straightforward personality and hence had never liked Tian Chu’s fresh and innocent style and melodies. So, very unfortunately, she genuinely did not know how to sing this one.

Luckily, she could think quickly on her feet, and at once she stuffed the microphone into Jia He’s hands, rapidly whispering, “I don’t know her songs. Hurry up and sing. Don’t let your idol feel too awkward.”

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