“Ah1Affectionate term of address Che, what time are you coming home tonight? I’ll wait for your return.”
A familiar and gentle voice sounded next to his ear.
“Happy early birthday, Ah Che.”
Wen Che wanted to respond but discovered that the hand holding the phone was turning transparent. He opened his mouth, trying his utmost to make a sound, but could only watch helplessly as the truck rushed towards him like a huge beast.
Ji Zhinong sat up on his bed immediately, bumping into a firm and warm embrace. The dull pain startled him awake, a warm light dazzling his eyes, and the scenes of the car accident blurred before his eyes as if covered by a layer of gasoline, reminding him how he had been crushed and died.
Li Shaoyao saw his face turn pale like he was having a nightmare. No matter how he tried, he couldn’t wake him up. He got up and picked up a cup of cold water, originally wanting to just pour it, but then hesitated for a few moments before shifting to wetting his thumb with the cold water and then gently caressing Ji Zhinong’s eyelids.
The cold moisture washed away the “gasoline” and only then did the scene before his eyes became clear.
It wasn’t the highway with its howling cold winds but a room with the heater on.
The one taking up his field of vision also wasn’t the truck that took his life but Li Shaoyao.
“Have you sobered up?” He heard the other ask.
Ji Zhinong looked around the unfamiliar furniture around the room in confusion. “Where am I?”
“A hotel.” Li Shaoyao saw he was badly shaken and asked in curiosity, “You had a nightmare?”
“You had a nightmare after meeting me once?”
“You think too much of yourself…Me having a nightmare has nothing to do with you.”
Ji Zhinong didn’t notice that his tone of voice was a bit blunt. Li Shaoyao didn’t mind. He got up and picked up a contract on the table.
“I hope you can read through this contract with a clear head.”
The contract was in Ji Zhinong’s hands.
The first party was Li Shaoyao, the second party Ji Zhinong.
The general contents were simply that the first party would support the acting career of the second party and that the second party would be the first party’s intimate partner.
Two hundred thousand was written on the salary line, and it even included five insurances and a housing fund2 Five insurances: social security, medical insurance, unemployment insurance, work injury insurance, and maternal leave insurance. Housing fund: self explanatory.
If it were the original owner of the body, he’d probably think he’d gotten a treasure.
But Wen Che was clear that even if these pieces of paper looked like a standard labor contract, the subtext between the lines was “eat you up”.
Ji Zhinong: “Aren’t you afraid of your dad breaking your legs?”
Li Shaoyao: “Currently I’m the head of the Li family.”
“…” What new development was this now?
Eight years ago, Li Shaoyao was brought back from the countryside, his experiences very similar to the original Ji Zhinong’s. But he was luckier than Ji Zhinong. Even though Li Shaoyao was the illegitimate son, when he was brought back, his only older brother had already died in an accident, and Father Li had gotten old and was unable to have another child. So Li Shaoyao became the only successor.
Wen Che had met the 19 year old Li Shaoyao, but at that time he was still a dumpy child, his face having a rosy flush that wouldn’t disappear in a short amount of time. Even though he was wearing a high-end tuxedo, he still looked like he didn’t belong at the banquet.
Even so, he was already the only descendant of the Li family; he had to be pampered.
Father Li was afraid that he would embarrass himself because of his ignorance of etiquette, so he asked Wen Che at that time to look after him in the banquet that night. He wasn’t asking that he be outstanding; it would be enough for him to avoid any mistakes.
Even though he hadn’t completely matured at that time, Li Shaoyao was still a good child. But now that he’d grown into a gentleman, he had been corrupted.
“Depending on me is your only way out.”
Ji Zhinong didn’t take it into stride. “At the very least I’m a member of the Ji family. On what basis should I depend on you to survive?”
“If there really were someone in the Ji family who cared about you, that day at the wedding, they wouldn’t have abandoned you to go worry about Ji Yunan,” Li Shaoyao brushed Ji Zhinong’s overly long bangs to the sides and looked at his clean face, saying, “After you were brought back, have your biological parents cared for you? No one even dealt with those negative posts online. The Ji family’s samoyed has a clean white coat, but they left you, their biological son, with your filthy reputation. You’re even lesser than the pet dog your family raised.”
Killing someone with criticism was as simple as that.
If the original owner of the body had heard this, he’d probably suffer a heart attack.
Wen Che, on the other hand, acknowledged that this was the truth, but didn’t want to be seen through so easily. “At the very least my grandpa cares about me!”
“Ji Qingshan is at the old age of 90. He could protect you for ten years, but what about twenty years? Thirty years?”
“What use is having Ji Yunan change his surname? Others still treat him as a member of the Ji family and you as a dog outside.”
“…I can turn over a new leaf relying on myself.”
Li Shaoyao laughed. “Adorably naive. Your contract is in the hands of De Yu. Even if it expires, they have methods to block your acting career midway. I gave you the main role of Treading on a Courtyard of Orchids, but in reality, you don’t even have the authority to sign the contract. In the end, it’ll be the superiors of De Yu who decide whether to give you this chance or not. Take a guess as to whether Qin Kaiyu will give this role to Ji Yunan or not.”
“Zhinong, all the cards you’re holding are rotten. 20 years ago when you two were exchanged, Ji Yunan took the advantages of both time and place. Trying to resist now without outside help, you have virtually no chances of success. You could completely reject my demands and choose to live a lifetime under Ji Yunan’s shadow.”
Wen Che had to admit that everything he said was true. He didn’t have any advantages and couldn’t even resist when his manager angered him.
He raised his eyes and looked at Li Shaoyao. This brat and the “battery” from back then had already become two different people.
Wen Che never imagined that the little brat he took care of eight years ago would someday become his last hope.
He sighed softly and picked up the pen. Before he signed, he couldn’t resist asking, “Why me?”
Li Shaoyao sat across him again, the ferocity in his eyes disappearing and changing into longing. “Only in you do I see his shadow.”
“Shadow?” Ji Zhinong felt curious. “Whose shadow?”
“…” This time it was Li Shaoyao who was quiet.
Ji Zhinong asked in a probing manner, “Someone you like?”
He agreed silently.
Ji Zhinong: “If you don’t tell me who I’m like, how can I act more like him? You should at least give me something to work off of, boss.”
“You don’t need to act intentionally. You’re pretty similar right now.” Li Shaoyao suddenly changed his judgment. “No, you’re missing something.”
He raised his hand, his thumb brushing across the corner of Ji Zhinong’s right eye. “Go get a tear mole3Legend has it that tear moles form from the tears that fell on your face when your lover wept over your death in your previous life and that they accompany you across lifetimes until you two meet again. here.”
Ji Zhinong: “Can I refuse?”
Coincidentally, Chen Qing knocked on the door and came in, saying he could try on the stage costumes.
Ji Zhinong: “Is it the same ‘trying on’ as I think it is? So fast?!”
Chen Qing: “The project started three years ago. Everything has been prepared with just you, the key, missing. Mr. Ji, is it convenient for you to come with me right now?”
Ji Zhinong lifted the blanket and got off the bed. When he got to the door, he felt something heavy on his shoulders: Li Shaoyao had draped his coat on him unexpectedly. “It’s cold outside.”
Not waiting for Ji Zhinong to feel moved for a tiny moment, he said to his assistant, “Contact the hospital to get him a mole tomorrow.”
Ji Zhinong: “…”
He was brought to the dressing room. All the people he saw in one glance were familiar people he’d worked with before.
Wen Che even suspected that Li Shaoyao had invited all the members of the original cast and crew.
When he sat in front of the mirror getting his hair styled, he finally got a part of the script.
Treading on a Courtyard of Orchids: the Return of the Old Friend was written on the script’s cover page.
In the first episode, Lu Yun was revived in the production crew’s stroke of genius. The script was originally a wuxia4Wuxia is the chinese genre of fiction about martial arts story, so the character’s revival wouldn’t be too unnatural if the logic made sense. It was actually pretty good upon skimming the plot.
The production crew seemed to have miraculously avoided the pattern of the first movie being a classic and the second being a bad one.
So what was Li Shaoyao’s motive behind exerting so much effort to film the sequel?
Even though this work was very successful, after six years, creating an endless stream of new topics on the market would definitely be more popular. Could it be that Li Shaoyao was so obsessed with recreating his former representative work because…
In the mirror, the makeup artist was currently drawing a mole on the corner of his eye using an eyeliner——This was the character Lu Yun’s most distinguishing/defining characteristic.
Wen Che came to a realization.
This kid definitely fell in love with the 2D Lu Yun!!
A hidden 2D lover?!!
27 year old Li Shaoyao, who was in the lounge, sneezed and suspected someone was talking about him behind his back.5It’s said that when someone talks behind your back, you sneeze
Not long after, someone knocked on the door.
Li Shaoyao put down the computer. “Come in.”
Ji Zhinong, in red, slowly walked into his line of sight. The crimson red contrasted with the paleness of his skin——beautiful, but the delicate type of beauty.
Incomparable to that person.
Although his outer appearance couldn’t be 100 percent replicated, his presence and expression were the complete same.
Li Shaoyao tricked himself this way.
He put one arm around Ji Zhinong’s thin waist, startling him.
“What do you want?!”
Explicit scenesLi Shaoyao easily embraced his body, which was extremely thin even after he grew up after malnutrition from his childhood, his ink black hair hitting the white wall. He kissed Ji Zhinong’s lips, his other hand reaching into the layers of the skirt, accurately clutching onto Ji Zhinong’s thigh and continuing to move upwards, plunging into a wetter and hotter secret place.
The pupils of Ji Zhinong’s eyes immediately trembled, his legs crazily kicking and his skirts creating red waves. He bit Li Shaoyao, and the other man felt a biting pain, finally releasing his lips and allowing him to resist verbally. “This is…mhm…rape!”
“No,” Li Shaoyao said hoarsely. “The first party is pursuing his legal rights and interests. May the second party please cooperate.”
“Cooperate my foot, I…mhm! You…ah…”
Li Shaoyao’s hand movements didn’t stop. He took in Ji Zhinong’s suppressed delight. “You can resist. That way it’ll be more interesting.”
Ji Zhinong only felt a soreness all over his body. After the world spun, the back of his head landed on a soft leather sofa, three layers of soft muslin of his skirt being lifted aside one by one with his fair ankle being grasped.
Ji Zhinong naturally knew what was going to happen next. He supported himself on the sofa with his hands and tried to get up, but just in this moment, there was a sudden pain in his lower body. A burst of numbness leapt into his spine, his entire body immediately collapsing weakly. He fell onto the sofa as though he was accepting his fate.
In the moment between the rise and fall, the pleasure slowly intensified.
Ji Zhinong lifted his red skirt, biting the soft muslin to keep himself from making a sound while using it to hide his face. After he hid like this for half a second, it was pried apart by Li Shaoyao. He kissed Ji Zhinong’s lips very considerately, swallowing all his moans.
Ji Zhinong pushed against his shoulders, but this person was as steady as a mountain. Resistance like cat scratches led to even fiercer tingling sensations, and his hands, which he had nowhere to put, left several scratches on the leather sofa.
Outside the lounge, the cameramen found assistant Chen Qing. “It’s been two hours already. Will we be able to film the final look tonight?”
Chen Qing was tight-lipped. “Push the shoot to tomorrow.”
Another hour passed. The door only opened from the inside when it was nearly 10 pm. Ji Zhinong’s hair was tousled, his right waist wrapped with the pulled-off red hair ribbon, his lips swollen, the tear mole at the end of his eye already blurry. Even though his clothes were neat and tidy, they were all wrinkled from his collar to his skirt6He’s wearing Chinese traditional clothing.
The makeup artist saw it and covered her mouth in terror, not daring to make a sound.
Li Shaoyao walked to Ji Zhinong’s side, putting an arm around his shoulder. “Go remove your makeup.”
Ji Zhinong slapped away his hand, glaring at him unbridledly, complaining hoarsely, “You ate all the makeup.”
Assistant & Makeup artist: “…” Ah. W-was this something they could listen to?
Ji Zhinong gritted his teeth. “Worry about getting chemical poisoning!!”
And then he stumbled to the dressing room while holding onto the wall.
Li Shaoyao watched his pitiful and stubborn back view, saying tastefully, “He has a bit of a temper.”
“I’ll send you back to the hotel to rest.”
With a bang, Ji Zhinong smashed a small chair. “I want to go home!”
(…)For details check Weibo @是盏甜酒. Search for keyword “eat makeup” (吃妆)
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The (…) details are in the dropdown~
Also, for anyone’s who interested for in the author’s Weibo, here’s the link: https://m.weibo.cn/u/6372124071?uid=6372124071&t=0&luicode=10000011&lfid=100103type%3D3%26q%3D%E6%98%AF%E7%9B%8F%E7%94%9C%E9%85%92%26t%3D0
- 1Affectionate term of address
- 2Five insurances: social security, medical insurance, unemployment insurance, work injury insurance, and maternal leave insurance. Housing fund: self explanatory
- 3Legend has it that tear moles form from the tears that fell on your face when your lover wept over your death in your previous life and that they accompany you across lifetimes until you two meet again.
- 4Wuxia is the chinese genre of fiction about martial arts
- 5It’s said that when someone talks behind your back, you sneeze
- 6He’s wearing Chinese traditional clothing