Xue Xiao had no idea about how Shen Tingyan fell into deep self-doubt.
This week, the rehearsals of all participants were in full swing.
The third round of the competition was expected to be held on July 1st. The program’s staff hadn’t officially announced the rules, but the participants knew that nearly half the people would be screened out this time.
In other words… by the fourth round, there would probably be only a dozen people left.
The atmosphere was becoming more and more tense. The feeling of ‘having one less performance’ was getting stronger and stronger.
The four people in Xue Xiao’s dormitory couldn’t get together during the day except for sleeping at night.
On the fifth day of rehearsal, each group was called to take final makeup photos of the play.
On the road on the outskirts of the city.
A luxury car sped by.
Fang Lei sat in the passenger seat. He glanced at the time and said, “We should be able to arrive at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. By that time, both your teams should’ve finished taking the makeup photos.”
“I won’t go in with you. I still have things to deal with at the studio. Speaking of which, I sent an email to the author you asked me to contact and got no response at all. I wonder if it was treated as spam or if he usually doesn’t check his inbox?”
Fang Lei kept chattering for a long time without hearing a reply. He turned around and saw the man in the back seat with folded arms and looking out the window with an indifferent expression.
It was obvious that he wasn’t in the mood to listen.
Fang Wei rolled his eyes and asked, “Have you been in a bad mood lately? What happened?”
He had this expression for five days.
It was okay if he didn’t mention it. Once he did, the temperature around Shen Tingyan dropped another ten degrees.
Oh, nothing happened. After all, he bumped into that little guy ten times in five days, and the little guy slipped away ten times.
Every time, before Shen Tingyan’s eyes could focus, the person on the other end had disappeared. What else could happen? Could anything happen with air?
Shen Tingyan almost laughed out of anger.
He didn’t know before that this little light bulb could run so fast like a rabbit. If Old Gao held a sports meeting for the participants, the little light bulb would probably take first place in the sprinting events.
The most fatal problem was that Shen Tingyan had no idea why Xue Xiao was hiding from him.
He thought about it with a tense face.
He couldn’t come up with any results, so he asked coldly, “…A person who usually looks starry-eyed when seeing you suddenly starts to avoid you. What is the usual reason?”
Fang Lei immediately made a gossipy face. “Who ran away from you?”
Shen Tingyan’s eyes coldly sent the words, ‘You just need to answer. Don’t ask superfluous questions’.
Fang Lei pursed his lips and immediately gloated. “If you haven’t done anything bad to make the other person hate you, it is because they have finally discovered your true nature!”
Shen Tingyan paused.
“I told you a long time ago that your face can confuse others. After getting to know you, even dogs will run away when they see you.”
Shen Tingyan: “……”
One moment, dogs could be seduced by him. The next moment, dogs would run away when seeing him.
He couldn’t get along with dogs, right?
His voice became even colder. “What is wrong with my nature?”
“Looking at your expression and tone, are you scared?”
Shen Tingyan paused.
“You have some misunderstanding about your temper. Do you know that with your appearance, your status in the industry, and your family background, the number of girls chasing you can circle around the city? But do you see anyone who dares to chase you now?’
Shen Tingyan sneered. “Do I need them to chase me?”
“Yes. Therefore, now even the person you need to chase you is starting to avoid you.”
Shen Tingyan: “……”
Fang Lei wanted to gossip again. “So what is going on with you?”
This tone didn’t sound like he was talking about an ordinary friend. When had Shen Tingyan ever cared about an ‘ordinary friend’ running away from him?
As an agent, Fang Lei actually didn’t care about his artists falling in love.
After all, the premise to care was that Shen Tingyan could really fall in love. But could Shen Tingyan fall in love?
Fang Lei laughed wildly in his heart.
How could Shen Tingyan not see it?
He really wanted to smile and be sarcastic as usual, but at this moment, he really wasn’t in the mood.
His expression slowly worsened.
He said in a low voice, “Nothing.”
The original assurance had turned into a heart full of doubts.
He didn’t even know if that guy liked him or not. What else could happen?
Shen Tingyan was extremely irritable.
For the first time, he encountered a situation where he wanted to explore a person but couldn’t get an accurate answer.
Even though that young man always had his thoughts written on his face, Shen Tingyan became more and more doubtful. Did he really understand?
“So—if the other person doesn’t like you, do you want to pursue them?”
The last words emerged in the car, and Shen Tingyan slowly shifted his gaze to the front seat.
Fang Lei sat on the passenger seat and looked at his expression inquiringly.
The two of them looked at each other quietly.
Shen Tingyan opened his lips. His tone was soft.
“If you can’t contact the author, find a way to contact the editor of the publishing house.”
Fang Lei: “……”
He said, “Hey, I know. I’ve already contacted them.”
Xue Xiao was actually very frightened these days.
He didn’t mean to avoid Shen Tingyan on purpose. It was a sudden, conditioned reflex on his body.
Every time after hiding, he would start to feel annoyed. He was annoyed that he was so impolite and annoyed that his reaction was out of place.
However, his heart was too chaotic now. There was no way to meet that man again in this state.
Xue Xiao could only devote all his energy to rehearsals.
His rehearsal this time also didn’t go well.
He mastered the robot’s behavior very quickly. Feng Wei praised him several times. But when it came to the emotional scenes, everything went wrong.
“Stop, stop, stop!” Feng Wei stopped for the third time today. “It still isn’t right. Xue Xiao, what is your situation?”
Xue Xiao and Cheng Yang stopped at the same time.
On the side, Jiang Xin and Wang Hai were silent.
Cheng Yang glanced at Xue Xiao and walked to the corner to get some water.
Feng Wei smiled at Xue Xiao and said, “You don’t look like you are in love with the male supporting protagonist, Lu Ning, at all. You are even a bit resistant. Why are you resisting? Is it because it is love between me, so you can’t accept it? You can’t act?”
Xue Xiao wiped his sweat, shook his head quickly, and whispered, “No, Director Feng.”
The rehearsal room fell silent.
Xue Xiao pursed his lips, sorted out the chaotic thoughts in his mind, raised his eyes and asked, “…I can’t figure it out. In the process of falling in love with Lu Ning, how does 3214 know that his feelings are ‘love’?”
Feng Wei’s expression softened.
The most terrifying thing wasn’t when an actor encountered a problem. The most terrifying thing was when the actor didn’t know what problem he was encountering, which would give the director a headache.
He said, “Of course, I know that for 3214, learning was initially a procedural habit. Later, it became his desire. Of course, he longs to understand love and touch love. So when he fell in love with Lu Ning, he knew it best in his own heart.”
Xue Xiao was a bit confused. “So… when he fell in love with Lu Ning, did he know that this type of love was destined to be fruitless?”
Feng Wei answered, “Everyone’s personality is different. This means that when they fall in love with someone, their reactions will be different. For example, some people will be aggressive and demanding while others will be timid and silent. They can be satisfied just loving the other person. There are also some people who are very humble and start to hate themselves after falling in love with another person. What type of person do you think 3214 will be like if he formed a mature, human-like character.”
Xue Xiao thought for a moment before murmuring, “…He should be the type that has no hesitation and won’t consider the consequences.”
“That’s right.” Feng Wei probably understood Xue Xiao’s problem at this time, so he explained it. “3214 is actually a bit crazy. So when he fell in love with Lu Ning, he didn’t think about whether this love could succeed at all. It is even less likely that he will resist accepting this type of relationship just because he expects the ending of failure.”
“For him, love might bring him pain, but even this pain makes him happy. Therefore, he will choose to embrace love without reservation. This is one of his few treasures.”
Xue Xiao’s heart trembled slightly.
Feng Wei suddenly laughed. “Xue Xiao, you have a relatively conservative personality, so you can’t understand this concept of love. But you also don’t seem that different either.”
Xue Xiao was a bit confused.
Feng Wei grabbed a cup and took a sip of tea. He said, “You look more like a straightforward person who will say it if you like someone.”
Xue Xiao lowered his eyes. He was silent for a moment before asking, “…Even if the other person might not like me… should I say it?”
Feng Wei laughed again when he heard this.
“Why? It turns out you have encountered such a problem in reality? Since you haven’t figured it out, you can’t even figure out the emotional line in the script?”
Xue Xiao was a bit embarrassed, but he had to admit that Feng Wei guessed it correctly.
He had been a bit confused in the last few days, largely due to this.
Feng Wei didn’t mind either. He could answer any question as long as it untied the knot in his actor’s heart.
“Xue Xiao, it isn’t like you have to confess your liking. But so what if you say, ‘I like you.’ Perhaps you are afraid that when you say it, the other person will hate you and stay away from you. But I think that unless you can really be friends for life, why care about this? You will be estranged one day in the future. It is better to speak clearly before then so as to not regret your cowardice later, right?”
Feng Wei looked stable and mature. It was as if he would think everything over carefully and plan before taking action. Unexpectedly, he was so decisive in this type of matter.
His ‘right’ question was obviously directed at the other three people. Jiang Xin and Wang Hai thought about it and nodded in agreement.
Xue Xiao was a bit stunned.
Director Feng seemed to be right.
…He wasn’t such a timid person.
Did he want to avoid Shen Tingyan all the time?
Keep hiding until the end of the show, the two of them gradually going on different paths and never seeing each other again… was this what he wanted?
Xue Xiao’s eyes gradually calmed down.
He didn’t want that.
“It is too far away. Come, you have figured it out now. Cheng Yang, come here. The two of you will do it again.”
They ended the day relatively early. In the end, Cheng Yang and the others left. Xue Xiao was still sitting in the classroom, drinking water and pondering on it.
He liked Shen Tingyan.
He had decided to face it calmly, but he couldn’t just rush in and confess his love right now.
After all, they were still on the show and would inevitably meet each other.
If possible, Xue Xiao still hoped… to get personal guidance from Shen Tingyan once in his lifetime.
If he confessed, there was no way Shen Tingyan would choose him.
Thus, he couldn’t say it yet.
Xue Xiao put down the water bottle and sighed.
He had become so mean.
…However, waiting until the end of the show to express his feelings could save Shen Tingyan a lot of worries.
After all, once the time came, there was no need to record a show together. If Shen Tingyan didn’t want to see him then he could just disappear.
Xue Xiao leaned against the wall.
The sunlight slanted into the classroom. He was hidden in the shadows and felt a bit lonely.
He still seemed to have become a bit negative.
This wasn’t good…
He closed his eyes.
This wasn’t good.
The phone vibrated.
It was one after another.
It wasn’t a burst of vibrations like a call coming in. It was more like messages pouring in like crazy.
Xue Xiao opened his eyes and picked up his phone in a daze.
The editor of the publishing house, whom he hadn’t spoken to for three months, was frantically messaging him on Penguin.
“Where are you?”
“Where are you?”
“Do you want to make money?”
“Do you want to sell the copyright?”
“It is a very awesome copyright owner. I almost thought it was a scam, but I verified it for you, and it is true!”
“Come out quickly!”
“[Wild lion roaring.jpg].”
Xue Xiao sat up straight.
What was the situation?
In the rehearsal classroom on the third floor, a group of participants finished their rehearsal and walked out quietly.
Chang Yun whispered, “Teacher Shen seems to be in a bad mood recently…”
Dou Mingjian also whispered, “This is no longer the level of being in a bad mood…”
Chang Yun wondered, “Who can make him so angry…?”
“I think it isn’t just anger…”
In the classroom, Shen Tingyan leaned against the window and smoked.
His emotional problems had fallen into a pit. If he couldn’t climb out, he wouldn’t be able to get over it.
There was no response about the copyright issue. He didn’t want to give up. But if he didn’t give up, the other party seemed to have disappeared from the world.
Shen Tingyan started to think with an expressionless face, ‘Is there anything else going on in my life besides acting?’
In the midst of this deep thought, he heard gentle footsteps behind him.
He thought it was a participant who left something behind and came to get it. He didn’t even think of looking back. However, after a moment of silence, the soft voice of a person who had been hiding from him for five days rang out. “…Teacher Shen.”
Shen Tingyan paused.
He turned back quickly.
Xue Xiao blushed. He stood at the door in a very embarrassed manner.
The light of twilight shone on his face, and the redness on his cheeks was still bright.
Shen Tingyan was a bit surprised.
He looked at Xue Xiao with deep eyes and said hoarsely, “…You took the initiative to come to me?”
After five days of hiding, Xue Xiao was even more ashamed.
He placed his hands behind his back and twisted them together. There was sweat on his forehead due to awkwardness and embarrassment.
Shen Tingyan opened his mouth. He wanted to say the next sentence, but he suddenly remembered Fang Lei’s complaint in the car today. The cynical words that were about to be said by him were forced down.
Xue Xiao lowered his head. “Yes…”
Shen Tingyan interrupted him in an annoyed manner, “There is no need to say sorry.”
“Teacher Shen, I’m really sorry…”
“I said there is no need.” Shen Tingyan realized that his tone was hard again and said softly, “I’m just saying it casually.
“Xue Xiao, I said there is no need.” Shen Tingyan had never spoken in such a gentle tone that was almost coaxing. “I’m not angry.”
“That’s not—Teacher Shen, listen to me!” Xue Xiao’s tone suddenly hardened, and he said loudly, “I really have to apologize!”
The solemn shout suddenly frightened Shen Tingyan.
It was unpleasant for Xue Xiao to hide from him for five days, but it didn’t seem to be to this extent.
In the next second, Xue Xiao raised his head and explained very guiltily, “I haven’t checked the email address I placed on the synopsis of the novel for half a year. I didn’t know that Brother Fang had contacted me. I didn’t know until the editor found me today!”
Shen Tingyan: ?
Xue Xiao suddenly introduced himself. “Oh yes. Teacher Shen, I am the author Yaozhu!”
Shen Tingyan: “……”
The hot summer wind was blowing.
There was dead silence in the classroom.
After a while, Shen Tingyan calmly put out his cigarette.
…So his emotional problems and copyright problems were actually problems caused by the same person?!