After dinner, Qi Cong, who had learned the whole story, and Shen Jia, who returned early after work, sat side by side on the sofa in the living room, looking at the laptop on the coffee table together. They were looking at Jiangtianwang’s old website page, which was scrolling with tips for appreciation on the computer screen. They didn’t move for a long time.
Finally, Shen Jia turned his head sideways and said, “Brother Cong, it’s about to break 500,000 yuan. It’s rising so fast.”
As Qi Cong grew into adulthood, he had never been given money like this by strangers and was not used to it . . . He was sorry, but he took out his mobile phone and searched it, frowning. “The reward received by Jiangwang is nonrefundable.”
Shen Jia’s body shook as he hurriedly pressed Qi Cong’s hand holding the mobile phone and said, “This is everyone’s good intention to you. If you return it, everyone will be sad. Brother Cong, I think you should immediately send a lawyer letter to Wu Heng to make the netizens who support you happy!”
Qi Cong was still frowning.
But that was just too much money.
Hearing this, Zhao Zhenxun moved his eyes away from the words displayed on the computer and turned to the two of them. Then he pushed the laptop on the coffee table toward Qi Cong, saying, “JiaJia is right. What you should do now is to contact the lawyer. Wu Heng is considered to be done with this. I suggest you hand over all subsequent matters to your lawyer. Take it easy. Come with me to the office tomorrow to meet the voice teacher and change your style.”
Qi Cong gathered his spirit and looked at Zhao Zhenxun, calmed his fluctuating mood at the huge reward, and nodded.
Shen Jia was excited when he heard these words and said tentatively, “Brother Zhao, I only have work in the afternoon tomorrow. Can I—”
“No, you need to join the crew of Legend of Youth a week in advance. Your time for recording new songs is very tight. I have made an appointment for you with the studio tomorrow morning. You better practice singing them well.”
Shen Jia painfully fell back into the sofa, rolling and howling.
Unmoved, Zhao Zhenxun looked at Qi Cong and gently reminded, “Qi Cong, the author or the artist, all of them need to rely on their works and the love of others to maintain their survival and to seek further development. As an author, you already have the public’s attention and support in advance. What you should do now is to repay them with good works and the right attitude to secure this support rather than fearing their gifts. Now that you have chosen these two careers, you have to get used to this income model as soon as possible. Don’t take these as pressures. Try to take them as motivation.”
After Zhao Zhenxun left, Qi Cong went back to his room and thought about Zhao Zhenxun’s words for a long time.
He got up, went to his desk, and reopened the computer, entered the old Jiangwang’s website, and opened the comment area of Chivalrous Bones. Grasping the mouse, he slowly scrolled down and flipped through the messages attached to everyone’s ticket smash.
[Cheerfully sounds sends to Murmuring Water black gold tickets: Go go go go! Don’t mind the spewers. Be sure not to lay down your pen. Please keep writing!]
[Sunflower sent a black and gold ticket to Murmuring Water: Don’t be discouraged. There are still plenty of good people in this world. Read the first three chapters you wrote. It’s great! Really, especially awesome!]
[Miss sent two black and gold tickets to Murmuring Water: Sending you lawyer fees and marketing fees, come on! Don’t be knocked down by capital and plagiarism dogs, justice is always there!]
[Nbv678 sent a purple gold ticket to Murmuring Water: Come on. Don’t be timid when you encounter the water army. Kill them with money and send them marketing fees.]
[A pot of wine sent a black and gold ticket to Murmuring Water: Come on!]
. . .. . .
Qi Cong has read hundreds of pages of comments one by one. Finally, he exhaled gently, and opened the Editor Cold Wind like a knife and typed a few words.
[Murmuring Water reply to Editor Cold Wind like a knife: I’ve thought about it. Signed the contract.].
[Murmuring Water reply to Editor Cold Wind like a knife: Thank you. ]
After doing this, he took out his cell phone and dialed Lawyer Jin’s number.
At 00:00 that night, Murmuring water, the wind and the moon bones sent out two things. One was a sealed letter from a lawyer and another two words: “Thank you.”
. . .
The next day, Qi Cong was taken to Manju by Zhao Zhenxun.
Before meeting the voice teacher, Zhao Zhenxun took Qi Cong to his office and gave Qi Cong a contract.
“This is an artist contract, which is divided in grades. Yours is B. It is only one grade lower than JiaJia’s, who has an A. The other conditions are all drawn up in accordance with the specifications of the newcomers for the duration of five years. It’s up to you to decide whether you want to sign it or not. First of all, it’s agreed that the training standards and resources given by the company are not the same when signing a contract and not signing a contract. Human feelings belong to human feelings and business belongs to business. I hope you can understand our position.”
There was no difference between giving contracts to newcomers with no outstanding selling points, which is only one grade lower than the top-notch artists, and doing charity. Qi Cong was not stupid. He took the contract and went directly to the page that needed to be signed then picked up the pen to sign his name.
Zhao Zhenxun asked, “Don’t want to negotiate the terms?”
Qi Cong shook his head. “No need.” After signing, he handed the contract to Zhao Zhenxun and promised, “I will try not to waste the company’s investment and training.”
Zhao Zhenxun accepted the contract and said nothing, only patting Qi Cong on the shoulder.
. . .
The meeting between Qi Cong and the voice teacher went smoothly, even too smoothly.
After a detailed examination and test of Qi Cong, the voice teacher could not help rolling his eyes at Zhao Zhenxun.
“I thought you were really going to bring me a student with no foundation to give me a quick success, which would be frightening. He has learned the piano, which gives him the foundation, and he should have learned the piano very attentively and well. His foundations in music theory are very solid and only need a little review. His audiovisual performance is also very good. No need to teach him alone. Let him stay today and go straight to lesson one, practice breathing.”
Zhao Zhenxun seemed a little surprised and asked, “Starting classes straightaway? No problems?”
“What could be wrong with it? You’re in a hurry, aren’t you? Is it not good enough to start classes early for the people you bring in?”
Zhao Zhenxun looked at Qi Cong.
Qi Cong looked back, obeying other arrangements.
“Then go to class.” Zhao Zhenxun was quite straightforward and lifted his wrist to look at his watch then looked at the voice teacher. “After today’s lesson, you’ll give him a schedule. Try to schedule his classes on the weekends. He has other things to do on weekdays.”
The voice teacher smiled and complied with an OK gesture.
Zhao Zhenxun looked at Qi Cong again. “I’ll pick you up at lunchtime.”
Qi Cong nodded in agreement.
. . .
The lesson time was two and half hours, during which Qi Cong put his phone on silent and put it aside.
By the time Zhao Zhenxun came to pick him up at noon, the voice teacher had already roughly arranged the schedule according to Qi Cong’s situation. The tentative schedule was one class a week on Sunday mornings.
Zhao Zhenxun frowned when he found out. “Only one class a week? Shouldn’t there be two classes a week for the beginners to catch up?”
“If there was no foundation. In his case, one class a week is enough for him. More than that would put a strain on his voice.” After answering the question, the voice teacher looked at Qi Cong with an expression that was much kinder, and he was smiling more than before the lesson. “Pay attention to practice more often. Your voice is in good condition. Don’t waste it.”
Qi Cong nodded in response and then politely thanked her.
After meeting with the voice teacher, Qi Cong left the classroom with Zhao Zhenxun and went to the elevator, preparing to take the elevator to leave Manju to eat lunch before meeting the stylist in the afternoon.
The elevator, stuck in the upper floors, had not moved down, and Zhao Zhenxun seemed to have something to do while waiting for the elevator. He was holding a cell phone and typing. When Qi Cong saw the situation, he took out his mobile phone and opened WeChat, which he hadn’t read for several hours.
At the end of the corridor, there was suddenly some noise as if some people who were in other classrooms on the same floor had finished their classes. Qi Cong instinctively looked over his shoulder then withdrew his gaze without waiting to see who was looking at him and looked at his WeChat.
Gu Xun’s cat avatar had several unread messages showing on it, so he stretched out his finger to open them.
Gu Xun: We are doing publicity in Cannes today. It has cooled down here.
Gu Xun: Kevin forgot to bring me my coat.
Gu Xun: Kevin is my assistant. I’ll introduce you next time.
Gu Xun: Busy?
Gu Xun: I’m going to be interviewed.
Gu Xun: The interview is over.
Gu Xun: Still busy?
Gu Xun: It’s time for you to eat.
Gu Xun: It’s really not suitable to watch mobile phones when eating. You are delicious [lovely].
Qi Cong stared at the lovely expression and squeezed his lower lip hard, suppressing the shallow happiness in his heart. He was about to type a reply when he caught someone looking at him. He paused, locked his phone screen, and looked sideways.
Several handsome young boys were walking towards the elevator together, each of them with wet hair and sweaty clothes. They must have finished their dance class. Looking at Qi Cong was a tall boy at the center. He looked less than twenty, his facial features were handsome and his temperament was very sunny.
When he saw Qi Cong looking over, he blinked and smiled at him disapprovingly before looking at Zhao Zhenxun standing in front of Qi Cong and said, “Hello, Agent Zhao.”
The other boys around him also greeted Zhao Zhenxun.
Zhao Zhenxun looked up from his mobile phone, glanced at them, and nodded in response. His attitude was not too warm.
As soon as the boys came, the elevator room became crowded. Probably because he was squeezed by his companion, and the boy who had been smiling at Qi Cong stood beside him.
It was a little close.
Qi Cong could even smell the complex odor of shower gel mixed with sweat emanating from the boys’ bodies, which was not unpleasant but definitely not good either. He turned his head to the side in discomfort.
After a while, the elevator arrived, and a group of people went in. He didn’t know if it was a coincidence or not, but the boy was standing next to Qi Cong again.
The other boys were talking to Zhao Zhenxun, and from their conversation, they should all be trainees signed by Manju. Some of the more talkative ones seemed to be getting ready to make their debut soon.
“Agent Zhao, is this good-looking brother getting ready to make his debut in the second half of the year? Then why didn’t we see him come to practice dancing?”
The boy standing beside Qi Cong suddenly asked.
The elevator immediately quieted down, and all the boys looked at Qi Cong.
Qi Cong’s face did not move, but his fingers tightened.
The photos of him and Shen Jia were spread all over the Internet, and it was impossible for these boys to not have seen them. He was asking this on purpose.
The atmosphere was a little strange, and Zhao Zhenxun noticed it and put down his phone, looked at the boy who asked the question, and frowned. “Song Chuan, this isn’t something you should be concerned about.”
The boy raised his hand and touched his nose. “Oh.”
Other boys had also withdrawn their gaze.
Everyone thought the topic was over, but Zhao Zhenxun said, “He’s not on the same path as you guys, so he doesn’t need to practice dancing.”
Everyone was stunned, including Qi Cong.
The elevator arrived just in time, and Zhao Zhenxun went out first, not giving the group of boys another chance to ask questions. Qi Cong regained his senses and hurriedly stepped forward to follow.
After getting into the car, Zhao Zhenxun said directly, “I know what you want to ask, but I can’t give you the answer. I am still not sure about your career plan and I am still discussing it with Shen Man. You should prepare first.”
Qi Cong then shut up and nodded honestly.
The process of designing and modeling was very tiring and tedious. Qi Cong was arranged by the round by teachers. One designed the hairstyle and cut the hair while the other measured the three sizes and chose a suitable color then changed his clothes to check the fit with each type of clothes . . .. When everything was finally settled, Qi Cong was so tired that he felt that his body was not his own.
But even though he was tired, the final effect was very good.
Teacher Yuan Yuan cut Qi Cong’s hair a little shorter and shaped it without dying and perming, retaining its natural state. Qi Cong’s ordinary T-shirt and casual pants were replaced with a simple casual shirt and well-cut light-colored pants while his feet were still wearing the original white sneakers.
The overall look didn’t seem to have changed much, but the feeling Qi Cong gave was completely different.
Before Qi Cong was already good-looking, but he gave others a rather thin and languid impression. After changing his style, the lackadaisical feeling disappeared completely, and the clean hairstyle made Qi Cong eyes look a lot more glamorous. The extremely embellished shirt and tailored casual trousers had weakened Qi Cong’s sense of being too thin and highlighted the excellent proportion of his body coupled with his whiter skin and softer than normal facial features and his quiet temperament, which was a light bearing that was cold and gentle at the same time. Now, he slightly gave off an air of fragility.
Qi Cong’s voice was slightly husky, so when Qi Cong started to move and speak, there was a subtle mixture of coldness with fragility that was somewhat provocative.
It was simply seductive, giving one the urge to destroy this cold, innocent white rose and force out the erosion a little bit.
Teacher Yuan Yuan was very happy. “How’s it going? It’s good, isn’t it? I was trying to get all the attractive points out of him while trying to keep the look as every day as possible.”
In the meantime, Zhao Zhenxun looked at Qi Cong, who was standing in front of the full-length mirror, and from the look on his face, he was not happy at all. His mouth opened at the slightly questioning and weary gaze that Qi Cong gave him, closed his mouth again, and after a long moment, waved his hand and said, “Okay, let’s do it. . . Qi Cong, take a selfie later and change your WeChat avatar.”
The author has something to say: Brother Zhao: It’s not easy to take artists who is stalked by a wolf.
Gu Gu gently pokes his baby system customized avatar: Why hasn’t he replied to my message?
Edited by: Faro