Discussion in 'Spoilers' started by kieranfortier, Apr 9, 2019.
846 – The problem solved, Hu left. As FL predicted, the netizens threw cold water on Xu’s apology. Some hoped their idols who were invited to the show would not participate. Others said that Lu Man and Li Zeyu did not agree, but the other three who signed on were disappointing. That night ML returned and they had dinner together with FL’s mother. After a bath, FL was getting comfortable and ready to tell him what happened when ML’s phone rang. It was Wei Zhiqian who had called in concern about what had happened to Lu Man. ML laughed proudly, she had solved it all by herself without his help.
847 – Wei called to tell him that he had pulled out his investment in ‘Performer’. ML said he didn’t need to, but Wei said he couldn’t let his sister-in-law be bullied even if it involved 500 million from his Wei Feng group. Let others pick up this dirty program, he sneered. Since it involved FL, ML let them exchange a few words. Wei actually apologized, and the show is in doubt with some guests wanting to withdraw. Those on the fence would see the writing on the wall soon enough. FL thanked him for venting on her behalf. She told ML that he had really good brothers.
848 – “And I am not?” “Of course you are the best, if not for you, would they treat me so good? How many of you are like this, to act so quickly when something happened?” ML explained that they were rich and powerful, but those like her who were their wives and girlfriends would find themselves target. All of them would join forces to fight back and so nobody would dare to act against them. Attack one and the other seven would muster their families and immediately retaliate. Song Yu had been kidnapped once and did not have enough cash, yet did not ask for help. They found out too late but quickly transferred the money to help out. Our little group would dole out revenge for each other. Just then the wechat “8-8-64” group alerted. Chu Zhaoyang asked: “StarTV network?” ML: “Yes” Chu: “I know.” FL was speechless; it was just the show ‘Performer’, not the actual network, what was Chu going to do? Nan Jingheng: “All of Nanyin Media will no longer work with ‘Performer’. All their clients and partners will no longer associate with the show.” Nanyin was almost as influential as Han Corp… this could spell the end of ‘Performer’ and actually affect the entire network.
849 – FL felt a twinge of pity for ‘Performer’, they spent so much and invited so many big names and yet before it actually begun, the show was already half-dead. And that was even before Chu had moved. ML explained that the Chu was a pharmaceutical company; they were a big advertisement sponsor. Each of the 8 families had diversified interests, ‘Performer’ might never really know which family was the true owner of their advertisements. The other members of the group began to chime in: tomorrow Performer will lose half of its advertisers. Qi Chenglin even said that though he did not invest in that show, there were other shows on the network…FL said that since Wei had withdrawn, she could use the opportunity. ML was wondering what his little fox was up to. “You see, I had never forgiven Lu Qiyuan and Xia Xingyang for blocking me off at school that time. Now that ‘Performer’ had lost so much investment, they are sure to look for other sources…” ML rubbed her hair: “You need who to work with whom, just tell me. Wei Zhiqian will surely arrange it well.” Even so, FL and ML did not expect Wei to be so mischievous to call Director Ge in the middle of the night. It was 12:40 and Ge was finally able to sleep after the day’s problems. Suddenly the phone rang and broke the peaceful slumber Ge and his wife.
850 – It was from Wei Zhiqian’s General Manager Lian. He had been specifically instructed by Wei to inform Ge after midnight. Lian did not know how Ge had offended Wei to have been told to do this. Ge hurriedly went out of the bedroom to continue the call. Lian bluntly told him that President Wei had decided to pull Wei Feng Group out of ‘Performer’. Ge was stunned and Lian repeated it twice to make it completely clear. “I am serious. Sorry to have woken you up. Now that I have told you this, I too can sleep well. Good night,” Lian said. Ge wanted to know the reason but Lian said it was Wei’s decision; even Lian himself had been surprised.
851 – Lian had asked President Wei for the reason, only to be scolded to do what he was told. Lian even felt a little sympathetic for Ge and said maybe that it was because of Xu who had revealed the actual amount of investment from the Wei Feng group. The group was enthusiastic about ‘Performer’ and decided to give an unusually large investment. But in the future any new program seeking sponsorship from us would expect a similar amount, isn’t that bad for us? And you… you guys haven’t even started yet and created so much trouble. We are no longer optimistic about your ratings and afraid it will turn us into a laughing stock, and so could only withdraw. Ge was silent for a while before asking if there was any possibility of a change. Lian: “If there is any, the president would not have called me in the middle of the night. There was nothing urgent in the day; he must have thought it through for a long time till the night to have ordered me to do this now.” Ge could only sigh at President Wei’s neurotic decision.
852 – “I am only the messenger and I can’t interfere in my president’s decision,” Lian said and ended the call, going as far as to shut down the phone so that Ge could not call him back. That night a restless Ge called Xu Yaojie and gave him a severe scolding and told him to quit. Then he called Wu, VP Wang and StarTV’s advertising department. All the shows affected by Wei’s decision called Ge up to complain. The next day Ge tried to contact him, only to be told he was unavailable. When he personally went to Wei Feng’s office, he was barred by the front desk and he couldn’t even meet Lian. Ge could only tell his advertising department colleagues to seek other sponsors. All the advertisers save one had quit the show and even that last one is doubtful. Ge then tried to contact the PR expert Wei Zilin for help, only to be told by his assistant that they are full up on cases.
853 – Ge was angry at the assistant’s attitude and demanded to talk to Wei Zilin himself. He was refused and Ge had to track down his personal contact himself. Eventually he got to Wei Zilin, only to be refused and given the same reason despite Ge’s large offer. Meanwhile, FL who knew all about the problems ‘Performer’ had was back in school. She hatched a ploy with her friends Zheng Yuan, Pan Xue and Han Leilei. Once they had made sure Lu Qi could easily hear them in the classroom, Zheng Yuan then asked FL about the sponsorship woes surrounding ‘Performer’. FL confirmed the story, saying how the group was unhappy because their investment figure was revealed. Zheng Yuan was mystified: though the amount was high it wasn’t really anything unusual, nobody else had complained and the audience think it was normal for a high profile show.
854 – Pan Xue agreed that the sponsorship seemed high at 600 million. Six years ago a variety show only had 30 million fees. Han Leilei gushed about another variety show which had invited guests that she liked very much. FL explained to her friends the reasoning for ‘Performer’ big fees: no other competing shows, big name guests, the current lull in movies and tv dramas as well as the very generous Wei Feng Group which liked to take risks as per their own preference. But that doesn’t mean Wei Feng Group was stupid. Maybe they really were optimistic at the start but Xu’s recording ruined everything (here her friends gave her a look: ‘You’re the one who revealed the recording’). Now that Wei Feng Group had withdrawn, they need to find a new sponsor. It is almost time to start recording and the broadcast date itself is near, surely they must be very urgent.
855 – Lu Qi who sitting nearby obviously paid close attention to their talk. Pan Xue said that no one could step in for Wei Feng, and the show had so much bad press too. FL said that is why the show would not ask for too much now, maybe 30-40 million and find others to collaborate so as not to shame the show. An advertiser would find it nice timing to press for a lower price. Zheng Yuan asked who would since there is a stink around the show. FL reasoned that the show haven’t started yet, netizens can be forgetful. They might want to watch the show for the stars and idols that they like, and the guests have fans of their own. “Like me,” Pan Xue said. Han Leilei: “Well, if it was anyone else I wouldn’t believe it, but since it is Lu Man then I believe in her judgment”. FL said to wait and see who would take advantage of the situation to benefit cheaply. Lu Qi couldn’t wait for end of class to leave. Zheng Yuan, Pan Xue and Han Leilei who had all witnessed Lu Qiyuan and Xia Qingyang’s unreasonable treatment of FL commented to each other about how capable FL was, maybe because she had to depend on herself her entire life. It was no wonder that FL won’t recognize Lu as her father. It was difficult to imagine the hardship she had gone through. That was why when FL asked them to help play out the scene, they were more than willing to help and teach Lu Qiyuan a lesson.
856 – They knew that FL was clever enough to have manipulated them to trick Lu Qi, but the fact that she actually asked them for help moved them. She had told them the truth and trusted them. And so they sat back and waited for Lu Qiyuan to be hooked. As predicted, Lu Qi really went to find her father at his office, not even stopping to look for He Zhengbai. The employees there all knew her as Miss Lu and greeted her politely; as Lu Qiyuan had proudly acknowledged her in front of the company in the past while ignoring Lu Man. Thus whenever Lu Man was at the company, nobody knew her. Lu Qi returned their greetings and went straight to her father’s office, where she was stopped by his new assistant Jiang Yujie. Lu Qi did not recognize the young woman because her father’s previous assistants had all been men which were arranged by a paranoid Xia Qingyang. After all, she had snatched Lu Qiyuan and thus was afraid of others doing the same to her. Thus Lu Qi was very cold to this Jiang, and asked what happened to the previous assistant Liu. Jiang informed her that Liu had resigned, only to be scolded by an older employee who introduced Lu Qi as their boss’s daughter.
857 – Lu Qi immediately disliked this Jiang, saying that she should have recognized her from tv or the web even if Jiang had not seen her in the company before. Jiang hurriedly tried to explain that Lu Qi did look familiar but had never seen her in real life. Lu Qi asked what happened to Liu, the older employee said that it was normal procedure to fill the gap for at least a month as they look for a suitable replacement. Lu Qi did not like Jiang at all, finding her to be actually beautiful and as vulnerable as a flower. Just then Lu Qiyuan appeared and Lu Qi’s attitude changed completely. She pretended to be hurt and blamed Jiang for stopping her. Jiang could only apologize pitifully, but this only made Lu Qi even angrier because she and Xia Qingyang had used this sort of tactic against Xia Qingwei and Lu Man in the past. Lu Qiyuan told her to remember Lu Qi and not to stop her in the future. Jiang tearfully said she understood. Before entering into his office, Lu Qi gave Jiang a final chilly stare that reduced her into a nervous, timid wreck.
858 – Lu Qi felt she finally encountered someone who behaved like her, acting pitiful to get the sympathy of others. She asked where Jiang had come from. Lu Qiyuan was annoyed as he really needed an assistant. Lu Qi quickly shifted saying that Jiang looked too timid and fearful and would shame the company in front of their clients. She was surprised when Lu Qiyuan dismissed her arguments. “Are you suspecting me then?” Lu Qiyuan asked exasperatedly, “You are becoming like your mother.” Lu Qi then brought up what she had overheard from Lu Man regarding ‘Performer’. Lu Qiyuan was hesistant, did Lu Man tell her this deliberately? “Dad, she doesn’t even know I was eavesdropping.” Lu Qi said it was a chance to attract new customers for their company. Now that ‘Performer’ is desperate, it was easy to pull down the price.
859 – Lu Qiyuan felt her words were justifiable. He would consider it seriously and Lu Qi reminded him of the short time available. Once the Lu company become the sponsor, wouldn’t it be easy for Lu Qi to be in the show? She is very confident in Lu Man’s reasoning as well as in StarTV; surely the network would not want a flagship program to fail. Didn’t Lu Man say all the guests have their own fans too? Thus all Lu Qi needs to do is create conflict and buzz with them to raise her own profile. All this while Lu Qiyuan thought Lu Qi was concerned about the company, but she had her own selfish reasons. He even thanked her for being considerate. Before leaving, Lu Qi asked if he was coming back for dinner. He had been busy with clients lately, but after seeing Jiang, Lu Qi was a little suspicious. Lu Qiyuan agreed.
860 – Once she stepped outside, Jiang greeted her politely. Lu Qi could not snap at her because Lu Qiyuan was sending her off. Once she had left, Lu Qiyuan returned to see a tearful Jiang. He really had no designs on her, it was all nonsense thought up by Lu Qi and Xia Qingyang. But seeing the vulnerable Jiang now made him sigh and he comforted her. She thanked him and Lu Qiyuan was reminded of Xia Qingyang of the past, instead of the shrew that she was today. He shook out the stray thoughts and began to check on ‘Performer’; he was not reckless enough to invest in it based on Lu Qi’s words alone. Eventually he negotiated with Ge and agreed at 40 million. Both sides were relieved. Lu Qiyuan felt he had made a saving from the initial price of 50 million, while Ge finally had a company sponsor in the show’s title.
Thanx for the spoilers!!!!
Thank you for the spoiler
Idiots. Lu Qi and her father are both idiots. The father even more so.
Don’t we know it from the earliest chapters
Yep, and it keeps getting worse.
Thankk youu soo much for the spoilersss!!!!
Getting longer and longer because of speeches.
861 – Ge was especially relieved since he had a hit a dead end, nobody else had responded to him. But just after they had signed the contract, Wei Feng Group released a statement the next day about severing its ties with ‘Performer’. Meanwhile, Ge’s fire was stoked and he was relishing the time when he would make Lu Man and Li Zeyu regret their choice when the show becomes hot. Suddenly Deputy Wu rushed into his office in alarm and showed him Wei Feng Group’s public announcement. All this while they had managed to keep Wei Feng Group’s withdrawal quiet and so the audience’s perception was that everything was going as normal. Even the guests had joined the show expecting Wei Feng Group to continue its sponsorship. But now we have signed on with Lu Company and so Wei Feng Group made this statement. It has become huge news, with the netizens assuming it had pulled out because it had discovered fraud and bad rumors in our show.
862 – Ge raged, saying how Lu Man was completely poisonous. Nothing good has come out of being associated with her. Then his secretary came in to announce that an agent had called to inform them that Gao Zishan was pulling out of the show. The theme of the show was to have several famous filmmakers to critique in the show. Next was the agent of the ‘film emperor’ Zhang Shuidong who gave the excuse of scheduling conflict. Ge hurriedly ordered for them to convince the remaining artists not to quit and ask for their terms; and to search for second or even third tier stars as well. Even rookies who were just in a few tv dramas, anyone with a future potential should be contacted and signed up. But next came even more bad news, Gao Zishan, Zhang Shuidong, Yu Yanshu, Lan Jiexin, Director Sun Yiwu all publicly announced their withdrawal. They were all the main attractions of the show. Ge hung on to the hope for direct negotiations. He understood that the actors and stars wanted to be on the show for exposure and fame and withdrew once they felt the risk was too great as the show became riddled with bad publicity.
863 – But someone with Director Sun’s credentials is needed to give the show some credibility, even if they could not affect the voting process. Wu reminded him that Director Sun is very close to Lu Man, he had even appeared to support her at the Huayi Cup. Someone then suggested Jicheng as a replacement, Wu again said that he even brought his wife and child to support Lu Man. Ge was furious, FL was still new in the industry, she can’t possibly be connected to everyone. Weren’t there Ma Xianghuan and Lian Fang in the Huayi Cup? They were veterans who rose above the rumors and online nonsense. They were contacted but both gave their refusal. They had only appeared in the Huayi Cup because CEO Han had personally invited them.
864 – Ge hollered for them to keep looking. At home, Xia Qingwei asked Lu Man if they could really find replacements. FL said they could find the second and tier stars that really needed the opportunity and exposure. Some would not care even if the show was rigged. But the show is so full of bad news before it even begun; the effect of it isn’t much. Xia was relieved, as she disliked the idea of a rigged show. Meanwhile, Lu Qiyuan was completely the opposite as the show seemed to be on edge. He called Ge who gave his assurance about replacement stars. Lu was convinced. Soon it was the New Year. ‘Performer’ had two recorded shows prepared and would primiere on Friday night, the fifth day of Chinese New Year. The stars who signed on were bound by confidentiality, and so FL went online to look for her favorite paparazzi Big Bear. He was slightly peeved that she didn’t look for him earlier about the show being rigged; she said she wanted to have her revenge. She asked what artistes had signed with ‘Performer’, he promised to find out for her.
865 – ML and FL went to visit the Hans. Grandma excitedly pulled FL into the bedroom to give her new clothes, treating ML and Han Zhuofeng like air. Butler Sun then announced the arrival of Han Dongping, his wife Madam Lin Liye and their elder son Han Zhuoling and his wife and young son. Grandma reminded them not to give Han Dongping any face if he decides to make trouble, not caring that his son Zhuofeng was right there. Once they entered, Grandma greeted Zhuoling’s son (her great grandson) enthusisastically; that branch of the family had been away managing the family business in Europe. She then called over FL and ML. Dongping saw that they were still together and made a face. FL could see that ML Han Zhuoli and Zhuoling were quite similar, but of course ML was superior. This was caught by Zhuoling’s wife, she was relieved that Zhuoli finally found a good woman. ML said FL can call Zhuoling ‘Big Brother’, unofficially announcing that FL was now part of the family. She dutifully did so.
866 – Zhuoling’s wife Xia Yixin smiled and called her ‘Sister-in-law’. ML saw that Zhuoling was puzzled and explained by holding FL’s hand. “We’re engaged to marry,” he said and Zhuoling congratulated him. Han Dongping on the other hand was shocked, demanding to know why he was not informed. Madam Shen Nuo came over and said it was funny since her son’s engagement did not need his approval. Seeing their lack of reaction, Han Dongping asked if his wife Lin Liye and son Zhuofeng knew of it. Grandma lied and said they knew the same time he did. He did not believe her, but Grandpa scolded him: “Your own son Zhuoling was not surprised, why can’t you be as calm and him instead of trying to find someone to blame? What if something really big happens and you’re just as frantic as this, what to do then?” ML’s father Han Xijin was puzzled by his brother’s reaction. After all Zhuoli was their son and they themselves had no objections. Madam Shen added it makes outsiders wonder if Zhuoli was Dongping’s son instead. Han Xijin quickly interrupted her before she makes a thoughtless remark. Madam Shen continued saying that they are very satisfied with Lu Man, if you want to manage someone’s marriage, why not focus on Zhuofeng? Zhuofeng who was idly at the side was startled, how did he get dragged into this? Grandma then ordered everyone to come in and not linger at the doorway. As they moved in, Zhuoling’s little son Han Linkai playfully grabbed FL’s leg. Xia Yixin laughed, saying the kid loved a beauty and wanted to hold her. FL was about to lift him up when ML reacted faster by grabbing the kid by the collar and held him up so that he resembled a tortoise with flailing arms and legs. Xia Yixin was distressed as she had always been afraid of the ML ever since entering the Han family.
867 – ML passed the kid back to Xia Yixin and took FL away to sit. She obviously knew why he did it. “But he is still just a kid,” she said. “The only man you can hold is me,” ML said. FL thought he was childish and cute. She whispered: “What if we have a son in the future? I have to hold him.” ML actually took a moment to consider. “Just for a while. Even feeding, you can use bottles and avoid direct contact.” FL was stunned by his serious answer… and blushed when she noticed ML was actually thinking about it. It set off a train of thought in FL: she had assumed it was natural for them to marry and have children. She won’t avoid it nor chase after it and let it come naturally. She does want to bear a child for him and only for him; and so inadverdantly let her words slip just now. Grandma saw the two of them whispering and FL turning red and wanted to know what was going on. ML said bluntly: “Discussing about having children.” FL was speechless while Grandma was surprised. “Oh? Have you decided when to have children?”
868 – FL was embarrassed and said: “Let’s go with the flow”… only for ML to say at the same time: “After she graduates.” “Good, good,” Grandma was pleased knowing that they actually had plans. “Two more years then,” she said. FL was surprised, and ML whispered that he would wait after she graduates and not to delay her schooling. She did not expect him to be so considerate. She told him that he didn’t need to wait for graduation. The senior year is quite lax to allow students to start filming outside of school and so there wouldn’t be many courses. He grabbed his hand and teased if she wanted to give him a baby. Luckily he held her fast enough before she could scratch him. “Just kidding, it was a joke,” he said quickly. Grandma looked on quietly as ML killed himself. FL was so good to be prepared to give him a child and yet he was seeking death; no wonder he has been a bachelor for 30 years. “Since that is so, then you can actually prepare in advance in the junior year. You can time it so that you get pregnant and then raise your kid at home.” She actually pulled out her mobile phone to consult the dates and calculate. FL wouldn’t let ML off: “I’m not worried. But you’re so old… by the time you can send your son to school, people might think you’re his grandfather. What would I do then?” ML was provoked and said: “Seems like I haven’t worked hard enough to prove to you about my age.” FL was actually frightened; it seemed ML was sensitive about his age. It was her turn to smirk: “Just kidding, it was a joke”. Grandpa Han squinted his eyes to stop looking at the adoring couple putting on a play. No wonder Han Zhuoli could find Lu Man… they are like two peas in a pod!
869 – All this was watched by a resentful Han Dongping. He knew it was pointless for him to say anything as he would be drowned out. But he would never agree to let FL into the family. No wonder FL had such a strong debut; turns out she had Zhuoli and the Han family behind her. What benefit would she bring to the Han family? Instead she relied on the Hans just like a leech! Grandma is old and everyone has been tricked by her wish to be pregnant earlier and give ML a child. Grandma wants another great grandson nearby since Han Linkai was away in Europe. This must be FL’s scheme to grab hold of ML to enter the family. Han Dongping did not realize that just as he glared at FL, he too was being glared by his father. Grandpa Han Xizhen stood up and called Dongping for a private talk in the study. Dongping was a little excited because Han Xizhen was still control of Han Corp and usually would discuss big matters with Han Xijin; causing Dongping to feel inferior. He had just closed the door when Granpa Han said: “Take whatever bad ideas you have and get rid of them!” Dongping was stunned. “You have been glaring at Lu Man, do you think I was blind? Shen Nuo is right, Zhuoli is your nephew not your son. I don’t understand why you would care so much. He can take care of his own relationships, their parents have no objections and yet you’re full of it!” Dongping: “But Zhuoli isn’t just representing himself. It’s the Han family. He is not like Zhuoling or Zhuofeng but the next head of the family, and so his wife would be the head lady too! How can we be so casual? Lu Man has nothing, what she has now are all given by Zhuo Li. She can’t give the Han family anything, not to mention she has that idiot of a father!” Grandpa Han smiled. “So you know Lu Qiyuan is an idiot? Then do you know that you’re not much different than him? Let me tell you, why not look in the mirror and compare with the stupid methods Lu Qiyuan used. How stupid he is, how stupid you are, there is no need to count.”
870 – Han Dongping wanted to protest but was cut off. “Do you think you are so smart, or that we are all blind fools? We all know about the drawbacks surrounding Lu Man, but her strength and merits are more than enough to overcome them.” Dongping was unconvinced, and so Grandpa Han said: “To be the lady of the Han family does not need to depend on her background. Every family has good and bad. A good and strong background might cause conflict between us Han and her family, would she scheme against us for the benefit of her family? You picked Xia Yixin for your own son, fortunately Zhuoling himself did not have anyone he liked and married freely. Now we are joined with the Xia family. But after the marriage, is Xia Yixin for Han or the Xia family? Do you think just because I stay at home all day that I am ignorant? You think like this, and so I call you stupid, am I wrong? Lu Man will take care of her father and not use us to help the Lu family. Her mother is an ordinary person who doesn’t care about such things too, she did not even want a wedding gift, do you expect her to covet the Han family? It just happens that Lu Man is satisfactory to us and we most value her ability. You feel she achieved nothing, or by fluke. Aren’t you an example? You’re lucky to be born in the Han family. I taught and trained you, but in the end you still haven’t progressed much.”
871 – “You disdain her and so paid her no attention. But we have looked at her for a long time before agreeing for Lu Man and Zhuoli to be together. She is more than qualified. Level-headed, capable, quick-thinking and decisive. Even if the Han family is in a crisis, she can bear it.” Han Dongping did not believe the Han would ever be in a crisis. Grandpa: “I grateful that today I can try to wake you up. You are fortunate your sons are not like you. You are short-sighted, do you understand the meaning of being prepared? If everyone shared your thought that it is impossible for the Han family to be in trouble, we would have declined long ago and not even pass this generation! All the Han family head had to prepare for the worst and not be complacent. Only then could we continue from generation to generation. We will never always be strong or safe; even imperial families and dynasties have their ups and downs. Look at our family’s recorded history, we have been in terrible danger for 5 times. It is only thanks to the preparations of the past that we survived. Five times we hid in the dark and regathered our strength and stuck together in bad times. You care much about marriage ties with other families, but when times are bad they would be far away. We can only depend on ourselves. The daughter-in-laws toughed it out with us and did not run away. For us, those ties, those external help are not worth considering. The important thing is how Lu Man’s heart and the way she handled each problem. She faced each difficulty head on and never ran away.”
872 – “I know you have your own designs. But it was not enough that you decided your son’s marriage, now you even want to interfere with Zhuoli’s. But Dongping, Zhuoli is the next head of the family. You are not qualified to influence his marriage. I know you think you know better, maybe you will eventually find one that he would like. But Shen Nuo is right: Zhuoli is not your son. Even if us elders have an opinion, it won’t be your turn. I really don’t know what is in your mind to think that what you are doing is a great idea. Where are me and your mother in your mind, what about your brother and Shen Nuo? You dislike Lu Man and want to split them apart?” Grandpa Han suddenly threw a paperweight at him; Dongping was frightened. “Dad, are you trying to kill me!?” “I don’t want you to die, but I am more than happy to stop you! You keep glaring at Lu Man with ill intentions. Han Dongping, if you dare to act against her, I will disown you!” Dongping was shocked and denied wanting to do anything. He was stunned at the idea of being disowned. “Why not? You are obstructing the growth of the Han family. I can’t be here forever. I am worried of harm falling on our family, so why should I keep a bomb like you? I am in favour of Lu Man. Your mother, your brother, Shen Nuo and even Zhuofeng too. Though they have yet to marry, to us she is already a woman of the Han family. Think about it yourself.” Grandpa Han left the room and Dongping stewed for sometime. The atmosphere outside was strange, they couldn’t hear what was said but heard the sound of the paperweight being thrown. Grandma suddenly said she wanted to look at the calendar and smiled, turning the mood better again.
873 – The butler brought over the calander for Grandma to consult. You two said to wait until graduation, but you can first apply for the marriage certificate. This week isn’t suitable… but after the holidays it is very auspicious for marriage. They should discuss with Xia Qingwei too. ML nodded and said he will get a custom wedding ring for FL. FL thought it was all too surreal but agreed. Han Dongping emerged just to hear this, Grandma had deliberately seized the opportunity because she too had seen the look in his face earlier. She had planned to give him a beating later but Grandpa had acted faster by taking him into the study. She was really worried that Dongping might cause trouble and so took this quick action instead of letting ML and FL take their time. After the family reunion, Han Dongping asked his wife Lin Liye again about knowing the engagement, but angrily waved her off before she could answer. He ranted that he was like an outsider in his own family. He was the last to know, that he had been left out and his pride was crushed by his father.
874 – Lin Liye knew how to deal with him. She softly said that she really didn’t know and wouldn’t have hid it from him. Zhuofeng added his own lies. Even his brother Zhuoling didn’t know and didn’t react much. Dongping grudgingly accepted it. In the other car, Zhuoling asked Xia Yixin what she thought of FL. Yixen was nervous and tried to hide it, but Zhuoling told her to be honest, because: “I know you have a good relationship with the Dai family.” Xia was shocked that he knew, she had tried her best to keep it away from him. “Zhuoli will soon marry, you should not think of helping your friend. Such a thing is not worthy of the Han family,” he warned with a cold grin… indirectly saying Xia Yixin herself was not worthy. She was introduced to him by Dongping. Zhuoling agreed to join with Xia because he didn’t really care either way, it would give him a business edge anyway. Besides, Xia Yixin is timid and easy to control. But Dai Yiran is different: stupid, willful, self-righteous and unruly.
875 – Zhuoling warned for her to have less contact with Dai Yiran. She could only timidly agree, though Zhuoling wondered if she would really listen. Meanwhile, Xia Qingwei did not object to them getting the marriage certificate, it was good they marry early. ML was especially stung as he didn’t know that even mother-in-law thought he was getting old. Hu Zhonghui then called to inform FL that there was an offer from Donghua TV for their Classic X-Files show. It used to be a top show that spawned imitators, though ratings had declined slightly it remained in the top three. It was was show whose premise was to take classic movies and remake certain scenes, each team would be responsible to use their network of friends, industry friends and veterans to help. The audience looked forward to see what sort of guests the teams would find. DonghuaTV and StarTV had been rivals. ‘Performer’ was supposed to be StarTV’s flagship title to go head-to-head with ‘Classic X-Files’ on Friday nights.
So does the cousin's first marriage end because the wife does something? Is the son really his?
876 – FL said she was up for it and Hu Zhonghui would set up a meeting with the deputy director. FL then told ML about it: he said the show had good fundamentals and cared about the performances, not about winning or losing. The next day ML drove her to the hotel for the meeting and dropped her off, promising to pick her up afterwards. Hu Zhonghui greeted the FL and then called the deputy director who was staying at the hotel. While waiting, she casually asked if FL had used a driver. FL honestly told her it was the ML, Zhonghui was stunned and regretted at not being able to greet him. FL said he could drive her back too afterwards, but Zhonghui quickly refused adamantly: “No no no don’t use the boss to send me home!”
877 – She knew better than to be the third wheel, it would affect her job later. It was a cushy enough job, there were scary moments but FL handled it all by herself. It was good for Zhonghui to keep quiet and unobtrusive. They went to the hotel’s café where they waited for the appointment. The deputy Chi Xingrui arrived slightly late and apologized profusely; with this point alone he was superior to the likes of Xu Yaojie. The meeting proceeded amicably with Chi believing FL when she said she is a loyal fan and viewer of the show, and wondered how ‘Performer’ had let someone like FL slip through their hands. Chi formally invited FL to join the show; she would actually appear on the broadcast on the 5th night of Chinese New Year.
878 – FL raised an eyebrow: “You want me to use me to fight against ‘Performer’?” Chi Xingrui laughed and praised her quick thinking. He told her frankly that ‘Performer’ was an obvious attempt by StarTV to fight DonghuaTV’s Classic X-Files. Usually, it would take a month for invited guests to prepare their schedule. Honestly, they are trying to grab our ratings and we would not stand for it. It is true that our audience is getting tired and no longer as fresh as other shows. Though ‘Performer’ had suffered, their line-up is still eye-catching. FL was surprised asked who the line-up was as many had withdrawn. Her paparazzi Big Bear couldn’t get her a comprehensive list. Chi revealed that ‘Performer’ had paid handsomely to invite Xu Jingfeng as well as several actors from current trending idol dramas. Their fans alone wil bring in a lot of traffic to the show. Chi was actually concerned about the impact on his show. “So you look to me? But it’s useless; at most I’m just a third tier actor. I have some fans but nowhere as many and my popularity can’t even be compared with second tier celebrities.” Chi was surprised by her modesty; other people with her achievements would be rushing to the stars. Other people like Zhang Lun had said she was hungry for fame and though Chi did not believe in their slander, he had thought there would be some slivers of truth within.
879 – But that doesn’t seem the case, FL knew her limits and had a sense of proportion; giving Chi a good impression. He asked if she knew what they were thinking, and she said don’t laugh if I got it wrong: Because of the conflict between me and ‘Performer’ and exposing how winners are scripted as well as the Huayi Cup, viewers will assume that I am on the side of fairness. Therefore any show I join would make them think it is a fair competition. It doesn’t matter to ‘Classics X-Files’, but inviting me to appear at the same broadcast slot as ‘Performer’ is to let them know you are up for the challenge. The viewers who know of my conflict will think it would be fun to watch the feud between the two shows whether in ratings. Yet it doesn’t matter who wins, the fight between the two shows itself would raise their profiles and generate buzz. And if I may be so bold, you want to use me as a ratings booster to suppress ‘Performer’ as well.” Chi was stunned as FL was correct. FL smiled and said she had no objections. She honestly did not want ‘Performer’ to be successful. Not just because they had offended her, but there was an unrelated reason that had attached itself there. After all, she thought, to make Lu Company suffer, she needed to make ‘Performer’ suffer too.
880 – But Chi was about to guess the reason was really Lu Company. Since it was a win-win scenario, he gave her the contract; her pay would be 500,000. It might seem low but FL was still a new actress, her movies may be successful but her roles were small. To his surprise, FL thought it was actually too high. ‘Classic X-Files’ was still a highly rated show. Chi laughed and told her honestly that the actual offer for someone of her tier would only be 200,000. But he appreciated her frankness and attitude which is completely different from the ugly internet rumors. But everything thing she did was justified and while high profile, never crossed the line.
881 – Seeing the smile on FL’s face, Chi guessed that she knew what was up with the extra 300,000. Chi said the extra was decided by the show’s director. 200,00 for your participation, 300,000 for you being our PR. Of course, this 300,000 is just the initial fee, increase subject to later discussion and requirements. They have to see if they could crush ‘Performer’ from the start, if so there wouldn’t be any need for more PR. But we lost or just win by a small margin, then we will depend on your help until they are completely crushed. Hu asked if they aren’t afraid of FL deliberately dragging the matter for an entire season. Chi and FL laughed as Hu had indirectly slipped up, such words would cast doubt on FL. Privately FL thought Hu was too naïve to be a manager and wondered what her motivation to be one was. Hu then said even so, the fees for PR seemed too high as well. Chi said that FL is considered top in the PR world, not to mention her ties with Wei Zilin. She may be a third tier actor, but a top PR consultant. Any show offering to recruit FL needs to take this into account too.
882 – But if DonghuaTV had that much money, why not just recruit a second tier star directly? Others like Jiang Yuhan who was second tier did not have a hit film but had good TV series and huge number of fans and thus commanded a fee of 600,000. It is only because StarTV gave ‘Performer’ the money and permission to recruit hot stars like Xu Jingfeng and Wu Guan that DonghuaTV became desperate. FL said this was giving her pressure, but smiled and they sealed the contract. They discussed the schedule and Chi told her to prepare a mystery guest so as to perform together. As many and as unexpected the better; it all depended on one’s abilities and networking.
883 – Hu thought Chi might have unrealistic expectations, could ‘Classic X-Archives’ invite the likes of Gao Zishan and Dong Qingrong? Chi explained he was just giving an example, though inwardly he really thought she could do it. He then offered the show’s help if she needed it, FL shook her head and said she would think about it herself. Chi himself is doubtful; surely she can’t depend on her former co-stars again. He decided to prepare backups in case the FL really failed to find people.
884 – They shook hands to conclude the deal and said goodbyes. FL called the ML who then drove over to pick her up. Hu quickly greeted him, thinking it was incredible that CEO Han was now just FL’s driver. FL offered to give her a ride, Hu quickly and wisely refused and left, repeatedly bowing to ML every few steps of the way. In the car, FL told him about Chi and the show, and ML immediately offered to help get the stars she wanted. FL said she would think about it, as she did not want to force people and disturb their schedules. She then saw he was driving a different route; he wanted to get her a customized wedding ring. As for him, he could wear anything; the important thing was to get her a special customed one.
885 – They held hands and FL idly wondered if the ring he was wearing really did deterred women from getting close to him. ML never told her but ever since wearing the ring, he made sure to be left-handed as much as possible so as to let everyone see the ring, such as holding the wine glass or clapping with the left hand on top. He brought her to a famous jewellery store. The prices are out of reach for most people and perhaps that was why it was not that well known. It was FL’s first time in such a store, she had never stepped into the boutique where He Zhengbai had bought the engraved bracelet for Lu Qi. The ordered rings were brought out. His ring was very simple without decorations. When her ring was revealed, FL gasped. It was extremely beautiful, intricate and extravagant with a large sapphire surrounded by small blue gems. How did he know she liked sapphire? Seeing the look on FL’s face, the clerk smiled and explained how the gem had been painstakingly chosen according to ML’s requirements.
886 – The clerk said the ring could be separated and demonstrated how the luxurious upper part with the sapphire could be removed, leaving a simple ring and diamond. ML explained that it would be suitable for everyday use as well. He thought she was simply too beautiful, she needed a ring to drive other men away. Just as how FL was worried about other women, ML too was worried about other men. The rings were carefully returned to their packages. ML regretted it, “I really want you to wear it now.” FL immediately disagreed, “No, we can wear them once we get the certificate.” ML smiled as it would be very soon. He didn’t really care but his grandma was too particular. He held her hand and they prepared to leave. “You two!” suddenly there was a screech. They turned around and saw it was Dai Yiran. She was shocked to find them together, it was impossible! Why is Han Zhuoli with Lu Man? Who is Lu Man, what is she? How could they possibly be a match? “Why are you two together?” she demanded, completely unable to accept what she was seeing.
887 – She even tried to stop them from holding hands. ML calmly shielded FL, while the clerk and store security did not know what to do. Before they could react, ML had lashed out with a kick and launched Dai towards the security. He then scrubbed his shoe on the floor as if trying to rub out something dirty. Dai who was in pain tearfully called out to him, only to be given a cold look. She demanded for them to wait. Had they been together all this time, ever since I was in Han Corp too? ML snorted: “Hysterical.” Dai was still screaming as they left. “You lied to me! You played me!” They were a couple and yet pretended to have nothing; Lu Man had been mocking her all along! No wonder she had it so good, no wonder Han Zhuoli would side with Lu Man every time! The store’s security politely told her to leave. She too did not want to stay there either; instead her mind was busy thinking. Now everything makes sense. Lu Man had offended too many people, but everything she did had the backing of Han Corp behind her.
888 – No wonder Lu Man had a smooth ride, from The Greedy Wolf to Red Tiger and even in the Huayi Cup. Dai had manipulated the judges and yet it was the judges who got eliminated. It was Han Zhuoli who had personally came down to get rid of them and invited the replacements. Even before that, Han Corp’s manager gave ridiculously high scores to Lu Man. Han Zhuoli himself gave her 9.8 points! It was because of him that Lu Man won the Huayi Cup, yet she had the gall to blame others about unfair competition and rejected ‘Performer’ in a headline grabbing way? Han Zhuoli had announced his engagement, and so did Lu Man. No wonder she was afraid of nobody, she had his support all along! Dai Yiran then called Xia Yixin, fortunately Han Zhuoling was not at home. Still, Xia could not help but lower her voice. Dai was suspicious but demanded to know if Lu Man was Zhuoli’s fiancée. Her silence was affirmation, and Xia explained that she only got to know it recently herself. She was still thinking how to break the news to Dai, she did not expect Dai to know. Dai sneered and said she saw them herself at the jewellery store.
889 – She ranted how FL was too poor to buy the things there. It was obvious she depended on ML like a cash machine, that she was playing ML out. Xia Yixin smiled, knowing that ML was not someone that easy and merely listened as she continued to rant and rave, letting her words in one ear and out the other. Then Dai asked if the Han family knew how much ML had spent on her. If Lu Man had heard this she would have told her that the movies alone had cost billions and earned back even more. Even ML did not expect such a huge return on his investment. Dai said Xia should tell the Han family elders about the money spent. Even if they don’t care about the money, surely they won’t like being cheated at all. Surely ML doesn’t know that he’s being played like a violin. Xia sighed and told her the truth: that they had been engaged for a long time and have been recognized by the parents. It was actually grandma who proposed the marriage, both grandparents had agreed to it. It was like a bomb went off in Dai Yiran’s head: they were actually going to marry? Impossible! Wasn’t Han Dongping supposed to match me with Han Zhuoli, how is he marrying Lu Man instead? Xia: So what if my father-in-law supports you? He is just Han Zhuoli’s uncle. Han Zhuoli’s parents have accepted it, who was he to object? Who would care? Dai then demanded: “When are they going to get married?” Xia paused, remembering how Han Zhuoling had warned her…
890 – Still, now that the matter was known to Dai, it was better to let her give up quickly. And so she told her: After the Spring Festival Holiday, on the 9th day they will get the marriage certificate. It was grandma herself who consulted the almanac and picked the date. Xia advised her that she shouldn’t think too much, Han Zhuoli was really getting married. There was no relationship between the two of you, it was all your wishful thinking. He has never even touched you, you were just brainwashed by Han Dongping into thinking that you two were close. Dai Yiran calmly said “I know” and promised to contact her some other day and hung up. Lu Man wants to marry Han Zhuoli? No way! Meanwhile, ML and FL were on their way home. FL was still relishing how ML did not hesitate in acting against Dai Yiran. ML found her giggling every now and then. He teased her and she honestly said “I am happy you were unkind to Dai Yiran.” ML himself was happy that she was happy. This was just taking the ring; FL wondered how delirious he would be once he gets the certificate. He had admirers enough to circle the world, yet he was so happy like an old bachelor finally getting married.
Thanks for the spoiler
891 – Entire chapter of the FL thinking just how good the ML was. She admits to herself that she is thoroughly entangled with him, she might not be confident in her own ability to hold on to him but she trusted him as someone who would not stray and would stay loyal after seeing his own distrust, panic and him being full of vinegar. She was thinking of all this while gazing at him, and ML nearly lost control as the warm afternoon sun shone down on her.
892 – When asked, FL stated simply that she lacked the words but said no one in the world was as good as him. ML finally discovered a small, discreet side road and stopped there to give her a hug. He bit her ear and then gently accused her of seducing him while he was driving. She tried to deny it, helplessly saying that she just felt she was moved by the moment. They flirted a bit more before getting back on the road. At home, ML immediately took out the ring again so that he could see her wear it.
893 – FL then suggested for him to do the same and he was more than happy to do so. They haven’t even gotten the certificate yet but ML was moved to be teary eyed. The next week, FL and Hu Zhonghui discussed about the show’s mystery guests. As feared by Chi Xingrui, FL did not have enough contacts in the industry. This was clear in the Huayi Cup when she had relied on her teachers. She had a bad relationship with classmate Zhang Xiaoying and average friendship with her co-stars Zhang Shuidong and Yu Yanshu. Red Tiger co-stars Zhang Jian (filming) and Liu Chuanhui (TV program recording) were busy when she called them.
894 – Liu even offered to rush over after his own recording but FL refused to trouble him. Zhang Jian then returned her missed call and he too offered to take a day off to help her, but she declined to be an inconvenience. Hu suggested asking CEO Han to help find some people, including Gao Zishan. FL felt depressed as in the end she would be relying on the ML again. Just then her phone rang. It was Du Lin who had gotten his career on track and becoming popular again, starring in TV series and variety shows. FL greeted him as “Brother Du”, only to be rebuffed: “So you still know how to call me ‘brother’”. FL wondered if she had offended him. Then he continued: “You have been searching in a circle to look for someone to help you in Classic X-Files, do you not know how to ask me? To think I still call you sister-in-law when you treat me like an outsider.” FL asked how he had found out. Du Lin: “I am guest appearing in Zhang Jian’s filming and heard him. Today is my last day of filming and free afterwards, but do you despise me?”
895 – Of course not! FL completely did not expect Du Lin to contact her. “Then why didn’t you look for me? And I thought we have a good relationship.” FL explained that she thought he would be busy as he was really popular. Du Lin pretended to complain and threatened to complain to ML about being ‘mistreated’ by her. They decided to meet up later. Then her wechat group with Directors Sun and Jicheng had some alerts. Jicheng asked if she needed help as he was told of the matter by Liu Chuanhui. Like Du Lin, Jicheng harangued her for not seeking him out. FL thought the variety show would be too small to accommodate such a big name director. Sun chipped in too to help either by acting or directing.
896 – The two directors bickered, automatically assuming they were already going to be the guests. FL sheepishly said that Du Lin was her guest too. Sun was surprised and praised Du Lin’s initiative and righteousness. They coordinated a schedule with Du Lin. In the end, FL was filled with warmth by their friendship and happy that she had solved her problem without relying on the ML. Hu Zhonghui was giddy with anticipation and wondered if Classic X-Files could cope with so many big names.
897 – FL suddenly realized that she had forgotten whom she would be with in the show. Hu volunteered to find out. Meanwhile, Chi was reporting to the director of Classic X-Files, Lu Dongliu. Chi was happy to report that FL was a very special person, and unexpectedly had goals in line with theirs. They were aiming to topple ‘Performer’, but FL was targeting its sponsor Lu Company. Lu Dongliu had heard of their acrimonious relationship and wondered if FL had actually plotted for the Lu Company to suddenly become ‘Performer’s sponsor. Chi then brought up her drawback: she was really too new in the industry. He had given her some time; else they would find her some guests. But Lu Dongliu was worried and had Chi contact her agent as soon as possible.
898 – Hu Zhonghui was still in dreamland after hearing how FL had landed the two directors and extended deep sympathies to the artist who would be recording the show with her. She received a call from Chi who asked for an update. He was in disbelief when Hu told him that they already found the guests within one day. She teased him by keeping it a secret, assuring him that the production crew would be extremely happy to see the guests. Chi wanted to know in order to make preparations but Hu was afraid of leaks. She then asked who was recording with FL at the same time.
899 – Chi replied in revenge: “Oh, it’s a secret”. Hu argued that it wasn’t the same and he finally revealed that it was Qiao Luna. But wasn’t she in ‘Performer’? Yes, but because of Lu Man’s revelation of the show being scripted, she too withdrew. Not because it would be unfair, but because she was worried about her popularity being affected. Once more Chi pestered Hu about FL’s invited guests and again Hu refused to tell him. Does he go around asking the other stars about their guests too? Eventually Chi gave up. FL said Hu could have just told him. But Hu said they needed keep it a secret in case Qiao Luna or ‘Performer’ made their plans to counter. Meanwhile, Lu Dongliu ordered Chi to keep an eye on out-of-work artists and make preparations to get them if needed. Elsewhere, Qiao Luna and her agent and assistant were also puzzled by the lack of information. They know guests would be secret, but usually the competing artists would be known to each other.
900 – Qiao Luna was slightly worried. Since the artist was signed by Chi himself, it must be a heavyweight. But Lu Dongliu had demanded the secrecy so as to use FL as a weapon against ‘Performer’. That evening FL made dinner for ML. When she opened the door for him, he was in a daze because how wifey she looked in an apron. He hugged her close and repeated how he wished time passed faster so that she would be his wife already and not just fiancée. While eating, ML reminded her that he had to receive a list of names from her for the show. She said there was no need, as Sun Yiwu, Jicheng and Du Lin had came forward to help. ML was privately annoyed, how dare these people rob him the chance to show off as her boyfriend. Soon it was Thursday, the day of the scheduled meet. Du Lin was shocked to see the two directors and they introduced each other.
901 – While they were greeting each other, Sun was busy editing the script. “What are you doing?” Jicheng asked. “Adding a cameo for myself,” Sun said. “You’re misusing your power! There are already set roles and you’re adding yourself? Stinky!” Sun: “Since I’m helping, of course I would have to show my face. Else who would know that this show is mine?” They began to squabble with Jicheng saying FL’s victory was at stake. Sun scoffed, they had two big directors and someone as popular as Du Lin, how could they lose? Du Lin felt he was lucky as he was returning a favor to FL who had helped him in the past. But this was an opportunity to work with such great directors, and it ended up with Du Lin owing her once more. After the rehearsal, the four of them went to DonghuaTV separately due to their own schedules. Fortunately the show was recorded and so they need to only appear for the last segment.
902 – FL and her manager Hu and assistant He Mengmeng went to check in at a hotel beside DonghuaTV. At the elevator they came face to face with Qiao Luna and her assistant, reminiscent of the time when they crossed paths at the VIP airport lounge. They merely nodded in acknowledgment to each other in passing as Qiao Luna left the elevator and FL went in. He gossiped that Qiao Luna must be a very patient person to be still employing the rude assistant. Hu could not wait to see Qiao Luna cry tomorrow. Meanwhile, Qiao Luna mused at FL’s presence. The fact that she actually remembered her name was irritating to Qiao Luna as FL had a lot of internet fame; while Qiao Luna had to spend money to get in the trending topics. Her agent Huang Yawen suggested that FL had a show too, but Qiao Luna did not believe a third tier actress could get a program at DonghuaTV. Her assistant Xiao Zhao wondered if FL was participating in Classic X-Files.
903 – They turned to stare at her and Xiao Zhan apologized but Huang Yawen said it was actually reasonable. Xiao Zhan happily said that she thought of it since the show emphasized looking for young talent to emulate the classics. Huang smiled saying if that was the case then it would be easy for Qiao Luna. Though the show is different than ‘Performer’, in the end a good performance for the audience to remember and be impressed by was more important. Even if there is no official winning or losing, the hidden competition was to overshadow the other actor. Qiao Luna too was relieved and openly hoped that that it was indeed Lu Man that she would be facing. Meanwhile, FL was ging to call ML who regretted that he could not come with her. Instead he demanded for her to call him as soon as she had settled in. He was actually in a meeting when his phone rang. A certain manager in the meeting wanted to flatter/impress and immediately scolded the owner for interrupting the meeting. They realized too late it was their boss’s phone. CEO Han allowed the phone to ring ominiously in the quiet meeting room.
904 – “It is my phone,” ML said quietly. The various managers were tongue-tied. ML adjourned the meeting and went out to take the call. Only Assistant Zheng Tianming knew how much he had been anticipating the call. The manager who had rebuked the ringing earlier asked Zheng who replied that it was the boss’s pleasure to mute his phone or not. The other managers took the opportunity to mock the guy as they long disliked his bootlicking ways. In his office, ML took the call and FL showed him that yes, she had properly checked in. She asked if she had disturbed his work. “No, I knew you would be calling and so I have waited for it,” ML lied shamelessly. Still, FL did not want to keep him away from work for too long and ML went back to the meeting. The next day (Friday), once more FL encountered Qiao Luna in the elevator. Qiao Luna raised an eyebrow and asked if she was there to record a show and received the answer: ‘Classic X-Files’. Qiao Luna said she was there for it too and Lu Man said politely: “I heard the two of us would be the first episode. This is my first time in a variety show, please advise me.”
905 – Qiao Luna nodded politely and they made their way separately to the tv station. Despite the walking distance, she would use the car. The moment Qiao Luna’s entourage entered the car, they began to badmouth FL, saying how she had forgotten how she had gotten Qiao Luna into trouble and caused her to be suspended for half a year by Han Corp due to the debacle with ‘Red Tiger’ and Zhang Lun’s ‘The Hero’. Qiao Luna sneered: “Since she dared to ask me for advice, then I will certainly teach her well. Yesterday I was hoping it would be Lu Man and it really is her. God is helping me with my comeback!” Huang Yawen congratulated her and herself for getting Qiao Luna this spot; though Huang had been more inclined towards ‘Performer’.
906 – But FL had given ‘Performer’ a black eye and the last thing Qiao Luna needed was to be associated with a negative show and so they switched to Classic X-Files. And yet they still met Lu Man. From ‘The Hero’ vs ‘Red Tiger’, then FL’s sabotage of ‘Performer’ and now this, Huang wondered if FL was stalking Qiao Luna. Though in some aspects Lu Man might be superior, there was still a huge gap between their popularity and established ranking. There is no way for FL to win, she is only seeking death. Xiao Zhan encouraged Qiao Luna who was very pleased to hear all the flattering words.
907 – ML had actually arranged a trusted driver to chauffer FL and two men to be her bodyguard. One of them was Xiao Guo who excitedly called her Madam to which she laughed it off. They got in the car and drove off. Qiao Luna’s car had actually waited to see FL’s travel arrangement and was surprised and allowed them to go ahead. At the station, FL greeted the busy Chi Xingrui. He delightedly showed her to the dressing room, but frowned when he realized Qiao Luna had yet to arrive even though there was barely an hour and half to recording. FL smiled and said she should be arriving soon as they both left the hotel at the same time. He quickly arranged for makeup to take care of FL and went about his business, belatedly forgetting to ask her about her mystery guests. He pushed it aside as he was really too busy to care. In the dressing room, FL began to change. As it was still slightly chilly, one would have to wear a jacket while waiting.
908 – When the makeup artist was half-done with FL, Qiao Luna finally arrived. She was peeved to find out that FL was still not done. Xiao Zhan demanded for Qiao Luna’s own dressing room as she had her own makeup artist. “You can ask the assistant director,” the makeup artist threw back, knowing that only the emcee/host of the show had an exclusive dressing room. Who was Qiao Luna compared to that? Eventually FL was done and she left and Qiao Luna immediately demanded touchups on her own nose. Her mystery guest too had arrived: Li Youjun who was proclaimed to be the national boyfriend because his drama role. He was hot at the moment but not yet fully developed and wanted more exposure. The other guest was the veteran actress Chen Xijun who usually played the mother-in-law type of roles. The audience would be surely surprised to see that Qiao Luna could even find her, though honestly it was all thanks to her new agency BOC.
909 – BOC had heavily invested in Qiao Luna by getting these two names covering both the young and old demographics to accompany her, a representative of the new wave of actors. Qiao Luna rose to greet her guests who were really there due to business relations with BOC. Chen apologized for her tardiness as she met someone familiar outside. Qiao Luna said it was ok, since Lu Man’s own guests have yet to arrive. Chen was surprised at their lateness. Chi arrived but was annoyed that Qiao Luna was not yet done with her makeup. There was only half an hour left to recording. Qiao Luna hastily went back to continue, while Chi guided Chen to meet some of the older people that she recognized. When Chi came back, his annoyance was increased because Li Youjun was being picky with his own makeup. Then Chi remembered and asked about Lu Man’s guests. “They are on their way, their schedules are a little tight but they will be here in time for the last segment.” Chi frowned but Qiao Luna was faster to complain about their unreliability. Xiao Zhan sarcastically chirped that they really must be bigger than Chen Xijun if their schedules are so packed.
910 – Chi was honestly disturbed as the program could have waited if the show only had Qiao Luna and FL. But there were plenty of other people appearing too and he could hardly ask them all to wait just for her. FL promised that her guests would be punctual. Qiao Luna asked if she was just delaying the inevitable, if so, she should just admit it and not waste everyone’s time. Xiao Zhan got in another sarcastic remark but this time Hu Zhonghui scolded her back, having enough of her nonsense. Xiao Zhan was about to retort but was pulled back by Huang Yawen. Huang Yawen then gave FL some ‘friendly’ words but asked for FL to at least tell them who the guests were. Chi did not like how they were hounding the FL and decided to rescue her by calling her outside. He urgently whispered to her, saying that it would not have been shameful to have asked him for help. Having seeds of doubt planted by Qiao Luna, he asked if she was really just delaying things. FL said that was ridiculous as such a stunt would get her blacklisted.
911 – Chi was really in a mess and wanted to know who her guests were. Now you know who Qiao Luna’s guests are and they are big shots indeed. It’s too late for you to change anyway, just tell me. FL was just about to tell him when a cheerful voice interrupted calling FL “sister-in-law”. Chi turned around and was stunned to see Du Lin, the red hot star who was guaranteed TV ratings. How the hell did FL invite Du Lin whose schedule was notoriously jam-packed? And what did he call her, ‘sister-in-law’? Chi did not know that it was FL’s PR which had been responsible for Du Lin’s rehabilitation. When Du Lin confirmed that he was really FL’s guest, Chi was relieved. He turned to scold FL for giving him unnecessary pressure. Before she could tell him about the other guests, Chi hurriedly pulled her and Du Lin back to the dressing room. On the way Chi asked about the ‘sister-in-law’ thing and he candidly replied that she really was the fiancée of his ‘brother’. Qiao Luna was surprised to see a cheerful Chi returning and even more stunned to see Du Lin. Huang Yawen and Xiao Zhan were speechless.
912 – Du Lin greeted everyone politely. They knew full well that Du Lin was extremely busy. Just how much did FL spend to get him? Li Youjun was just a star in an internet drama and nothing compared to the nationally famous Du Lin. Still, Qiao Luna still had Chen Xijun in her corner. As Du Lin was getting his makeup done, Chi announced the start of the recording. Du Lin could stay back as he would only appear at the last segment. The recording began with the two hosts opening the show and mention of sponsors. Then screens appeared to show clips from a classic movie. A microphone was passed around between the original actors backstage as they dubbed their voices to the clips. Once the actor had done his/her line, they walked out to the stage to applause. Then the host introduced the challengers of the night: Qiao Luna! Lu Man! They pretended to be amicable as they walked out together. The live audience was stunned to see FL. They realized that the show would be broadcast on Friday, the same night and timeslot as ‘Performer’. It’s a direct challenge! This is gonna be good…
913 – Still, there were some doubters. Others were excited as FL was fearlessly fighting ‘Performer’. And in this show itself Lu Man was up against an old rival, Qiao Luna. The actors began to divide up into two teams and proceeded normally. The next game involved pulling a lottery twice: once to decide the lines and the second the emotion to say those lines. Qiao Luna pumped the crowd and her team to drum excitement as she drew the lottery, but was dumbfounded she pulled a ridiculous tongue twister (something involving a llama). Then she pulled the emotion… she had to deliver the line with the effect of someone having her child being forcefully taken away. Qiao Luna calmly accepted it and the stage was given to her.
914 – Qiao Luna tried to act by saying the lines literally but the audience was stunned senseless by its terribleness. Instead of a crying mother, it seemed more like a crazed person instead. There was a distinct cold reaction and they only applauded when the stage hands reminded them to clap. Qiao Luna could only smile stiffly and be comforted when the host poured fake plaudits on her. Next was FL whom the audience was hotly anticipating. Without much nonsense she already drew one, much to the glee of the audience. Qiao Luna was annoyed as her own effort didn’t manage to win the crowd while FL got them going without saying a word. The host joked that she had moved too fast before he yelled start, to which she really asked if she should have waited. The audience found her attitude refreshing. To some, she was combative online but thought she was freshly naïve here. After shooting the host a sarcastic look (which made the audience laugh more), she revealed her lines. They were words from a concubine to the emperor.
915 – The audience and even the host felt the lines were too descriptive and too difficult to be reinterpreted differently. FL said she could only try her best, but was chagrined when she pulled out the emotions lottery. She wondered if she could pull out now. The audience was on the edge of their seats. She was to deliver the line like a cold-blooded psychopath. They laughed but then FL coughed to still the air. She suddenly sat on the ground and drooped her head. After a while, she looked back up with the eyes of an emotionless killer. She slowly delivered the lines, whispering like a yandere. The audience was stunned and enraptured by her performance. Even when she was done they were still caught in the moment, until she smiled and laughed. “I have finished. Why is nobody talking, was it that bad?” she joked. A thunderous applause and shouts of appreciation from the audience came as response.
916 – The audience reaction was very real and the show producers quickly made sure to capture it on camera. Qiao Luna was stewing as she felt the difference in reception. Was she that bad? Was Lu Man that great? Surely the audience was ignorant. The host announced that it was time for a 10 minute break to rest as well as to insert advertisements. The stars went backstage to freshen up and rehydrate. Chi reminded them the next segment requires guest and Qiao Luna was quick to sneer that FL only had Du Lin. FL who was changing heard it and merely said “There are two more”. Qiao Luna did not believe her, why haven’t they arrived yet. Do they want to make everyone including the audience wait for them? Privately, Chi was also worried; because as it is the lineup was not strong enough to compete against ‘Performer’. Qiao Luna’s guest Chen Xijun is famous but her older demographic would be tuning in elsewhere.
917 – The younger demographic that would watch variety shows would hardly recognize Chen Xijun. Chen herself was not used to any sort of delay and wanted recording to be on time as she had a schedule later. Du Lin smiled and said they were still on break for 10 minutes. Qiao Luna continued to pour scorn on FL and urged her to admit to faking it and wasting the time and effort of everyone involved in Classic X-Files, wanting her to be known as the reason for the episode’s failure. Manager Hu Zhonghui was about to erupt in anger when apologetic voices filtered through the door. Du Lin recognized it and laughed. Everyone turned and saw Sun Yiwu and Jicheng. What the hell is this, did FL invite these two directors? They apologized for their tardiness; they had a prior schedule and rushed their way here. Sorry for any inconvenience. Their words sound very sincere and it was obvious they had heard the horrible words while outside. Chi was very embarrassed as he had not stopped Qiao Luna earlier. Meanwhile, Director Sun Yiwu delightedly greeted Chen Xijun.
918 – Chen was all stiff and could only greet him politely in return. “Didn’t you say you have another schedule? We better get started then, we wouldn’t want to delay you,” Sun said to which Chen could only demur. Jicheng added his own urging and Chen was thoroughly ashamed and cowed. Chi regained his wits and timidly asked if the two of them really were guesting on the show. He was excited to the point of stuttering, surely they would smash ‘Performer’ to pieces with their help!
919 – Sun laughed like a jovial old man. He is Lu Man’s uncle after all, of course he must help in her variety debut. I was angry that she didn’t look for me, so I looked for her instead! Jicheng added too, saying how she had asked Zhang Jian and then Liu Chuanhui before telling this brother. The room was stunned, one called himself her uncle and the other her brother. What is this messy generational relationship? “Well, luckily Du Lin heard it while filming with Zhang Jian. Old Liu is abroad; otherwise he would have rushed back to join. How terrible this girl is to have even asked for Old Liu and not me as her brother. Qiao Luna who listened to all this was stunned and in disbelief. Even if Du Lin, Sun and Jicheng had arrived, it was probably due to some business relationship. Yet it was obvious they had good and real relations with Lu Man. They came forward on their own. How did this happen, wasn’t Lu Man still just a rookie? On the other hand she and BOC had to pay to invite Chen Xijun. No wonder Lu Man was so secretive! Chi was relieved but Qiao Luna was furious. Was there a grudge between them? Had she offended Lu Man before that she would do this to her?
920 – Before Sun Yiwu and Jicheng, the top director in China was Zhang Lun. All the actors in his films including the likes of Gao Zishan had to really work hard. It was so difficult for Qiao Luna to finally get a chance to appear in his film ‘The Heroes’… only to be utterly crushed by ‘Red Tiger’ and suffered a career setback. It was tough to leave Han Corp and enter BOC, and she had put her heart and soul into ‘Classic X-Files’ for her comeback. But again she encountered Lu Man. Originally thought of her as a stepping stone but was now a huge stumbling block who stole the limelight. If Qiao Luna couldn’t even beat a third tier actress, how could she return BOC’s faith and investment in her? Meanwhile the show’s director Lu Dongliu arrived to greet Sun and Jicheng enthusiastically. They confirmed that they would be guesting; in fact Sun had abused his position and wrote himself a cameo. Lu Dongliu was giddy but thought their participation would be complete overkill. The bigshot directors were not shooting their own films but running here to join a variety show. Is this not simply bullying Qiao Luna?
IIRC For the cousin first marriage, his wife cheated on him and had affair with other man. The son was actually his ex-wife with other man. MC saw the cousin wife with other man on the streets and took pictures. Then she used her public relations skill to fish out the real thing and found out more black materials about cousin wife. They got divorced soon with the whole Han family retaliating on her.
tq for the spoiler...hope will be new spoiler for next 3 days..
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