Early the next morning, ZhouXiang drove to the set. They had to film an outdoor scene today so they all met up at the set and took the bus together.
Today's scene was a bit harsh. They needed to film in the water; it was about a five to six minutes fighting scene in the water. Just using a stuntman took half of the time. Now it's already Fall; the hottest temperature is at noon at about 18-19 degrees Celsius (64-65 Fahrenheit) but the water is much colder.
ZhouXiang did not complain about anything. Filming work is just like this, having to grind their teeth to work in all kinds of arduous scenes in all kinds of weather. Making money is not an easy thing.
After more than half an hour, WangYuDong arrived with his assistant. The number of times that ZhouXiang seen him had increased recently. They filmed separately before but hearing that Director Wang's next movie is a 3D fantasy movie and with WangYuDong striving for the leading role, he had to come to the studio more often.
Although the actor and the body double do not need to film together, the effect is better when done together. Director Wang took things very seriously and is a perfectionist. Every time he requested that WangYuDong and ZhouXiang come together. But when WangYuDong doesn't have any scenes, he rarely comes. So when he came today, Director Wang's mood is a bit better.
ZhouXiang was putting on makeup in the temporary built shack when WangYuDong came in. ZhouXiang saw him from the mirror. He smile and greeted, “Dong Ge, you're here.”
WangYuDong smiled and turned to MiYou, “Miss, dye the hair on his temple. His hair color is obviously darker than mine.”
MiYou glanced at the clock and felt they are a bit tight with time. She was just about to open her mouth when ZhouXiang pulled her sleeve and used his eyes to signal her not to talk.
Since childhood, ZhouXiang had experienced the fickleness of human nature, observing people's words and actions are his most basic survival skill. With WangYuDong's temperament, ZhouXiang could surmise at about 80-90% if at 100% assurance with just a glance that WangYuDong is in a very bad mood, though the big star's smile still appears charming. It's likely that the company forced him to come to appease Director Wang, but having to get up so early, he must have been very reluctant.
ZhouXiang is more willing to interact with those people who are irritable and straightforward than to have conflict with a person like WangYuDong, whose outside appearance differ from his inner personality. It is better to go along with him as much as possible, so he quickly reminded MiYou that WangYuDong is not in a good mood and is just being deliberate in using this as an excuse to upset Director Wang.
MiYou pursed her lips very displeasingly. Although hair dying doesn't take that much time, the main point is that ZhouXiang's wig had already been set. To dye it, the wig needs to be removed, dyed and then put on again. It would take another 10 minutes. It's almost time to start shooting. When Director Wang is angry, it's naturally that he would scold at her and ZhouXiang.
WangYuDong sat next to ZhouXiang as if nothing happened. His personal makeup artist immediately began to apply makeup on him.
MiYou had no choice but to quickly removed the wig from ZhouXiang and started dyeing his hair. The hair cream is a one-time use. The process was quick. Xiao Liu also came to help. The two got busy and quickly forgot that five minutes had passed. The assistant director came over with a dark expression and frowned at MiYou as she was putting the wig on ZhouXiang. He said with dissatisfaction, "Everyone is waiting for you."
MiYou apologized for a bit; she felt so wronged that her eyes are a little red.
ZhouXiang smiled apologetically, “Zhang Ge, I'm sorry. Last night's game lost is fucking terrible or else I would've gotten up half an hour earlier."
The assistant director is a hardcore sports fan so his attention immediately shifted. He said with a smile, “I was able to predict correctly and won ¥4,000 last night.”
“Ah, Zhang Ge predicted very accurately.”
The two chatted casually while MiYou got his hair done. ZhouXiang quickly followed the assistant director and headed over to the set. When they got to Director Wang, the assistant director said a few good words. Director Wang looked at him and didn't give him any troubles.
ZhouXiang led out a sigh of relief.
In this scene, he had to beat up a few bandits on the shore. Then, he was to be tied to a steel wire and jump from the shore to the raft. Then from the raft, jump into the water to rescue the supporting actress who had fallen into the river.
The scene on the shore was filmed very smoothly. The next scene is one that he had to carry his sword and glide through the water as he jumped onto the raft.
This scene, he filmed it twice but Director Wang was still not satisfied with his movements because he felt that it was not graceful enough.
It was hard to bear with the steel wire tied to his body. Along with the low temperature and thinly clothes, ZhouXiang felt very uncomfortable. He gritted his teeth as he filmed this scene repeatedly. It wasn't until the fifth take before this short ten-second scene was able to pass.
Then came the scene where he had to jump from the raft into the water.
In order for the actress to not have to stay in the water for too long and for him to not have to change to another costume, ZhouXiang must succeed in falling into the water on the first take.
He and the stunt coordinator discussed this going into the water scene repeatedly so he felt very confident.
As soon as the director shouted, ZhouXiang called the supporting actress's name and then did an elegant flip and jumped into the water from the raft. The water in the river was so cold that it felt like ice needles were piercing his flesh. After he jumped into the water, he immediately swam toward the actress. He used to be a swimmer so his movement in jumping into the water was particularly beautiful. After a short while, he got to the actress' side and hugged the girl who was so cold that her lips had turned purple.
"Very good!" Director Wang nodded with satisfaction. "Passed."
The actress shivered, “Xiang Ge, it's very cold.”
“I know… I know. Be good. Just bear with it a little more. You still have to do the scene with WangYuDong." ZhouXiang can’t help but feel sympathy for her. For him, jumping into the water once was enough but this actress still had to go into the water with WangYuDong for a 'hero rescuing beauty' scene.
The actress' voice was sobbing, "Hurry and take me to shore. I'm freezing to death."
ZhouXiang took her and swam to the side of the boat; the staff pulled them up from the water.
The two immediately went into the temporary tent. ZhouXiang quickly changed out of his drenched clothes and wrapped himself in a blanket and got under the warm hair dryer.
MiYou laughed and blew his hair, “Congratulations, Xiang Ge. You passed on one take."
ZhouXiang smiled and joked, “Of course. Your Xiang Ge must pass on first take." He closed his eyes and let MiYou's fingers rake through his hair. The air from the hair dryer is very warm; his cold body gradually regained its warmth.
When YanMingXiu took food into the tent, he saw ZhouXiang leaning half of his body toward a beautiful girl, letting her blow dry his hair. His brows bunched up. He didn't know why but seeing this image made him extremely unsettled.
ZhouXiang opened his eyes and look at YanMingXiu curiously, “Huh? Why are you here?”
YanMingXiu glared at him and asked coldly, “Where's WangYuDong?”
“Um, he was filming on the other side of the river.” He glanced at the bag in YanMingXiu's hand. The restaurant's name is printed on it. Could it be that he especially brought a meal for WangYuDong? ZhouXiang’s heart felt upset; the two of them obviously slept together but YanMingXiu looked at him as if nothing had happened, deliberately coming from so far away to just to bring WangYuDong's meal. The treatment of the big star is really good.
YanMingXiu glanced at him coldly, then turned to walk toward the river.
MiYou surprisingly asked, “You know him?”
ZhouXiang responded with a 'hmm' sound, "I bumped into him when I left that day and gave him a ride."
MiYou curled her lips, "He's quite attractive. Why is he here?"
ZhouXiang shrugged, “Who knows.”
ZhouXiang quickly changed his clothes. WangYuDong's scenes were also finished. This time it was WangYuDong's turn to be shiver in front of the heat inside the tent. YanMingXiu kept following WangYuDong and even blow dry his hair in front of ZhouXiang while looking at him coldly.
ZhouXiang also didn’t know what was wrong with YanMingXiu but he felt that YanMingXiu is a bit aimed at going against him. Was it because YanMingXiu was angry at him for not staying yesterday?
ZhouXiang also wasn't willing to stir up anything with him at this time so he just pretended that they are not familiar with each other. He ate his drumstick rice plate and chatted with the people from their company.
Compared to their simple dishes, the dishes that WangYuDong and YanMingXiu ate were much better. The take out from the big restaurant came with four dishes and a soup. They were packed nicely in plastic lunch boxes.
ZhouXiang felt that YanMingXiu’s family must be quite well off. He heard that WangYuDong has a very good background. If the two families know each other, then YanMingXiu's background will definitely not be inferior. It is no wonder that he shows dislike toward his type of work.
ZhouXiang didn't think too much. Everyone's lives are different. The only thing that made him depressed was YanMingXiu's cold attitude towards him. Could it be that it's over for them?
There were still a few more scenes in the afternoon. WangYuDong’s scenes in the drama are heavier than his. He first played a minor role as one of the rogues that got freed by WangYuDong's heroic character. Then changed back to the same outfit as WangYuDong and waited for Director Wang's arrangement.
Everyone was busy helping other actors with their makeup. ZhouXiang was idle so he played with his cell phone. He inadvertently looked up and sees YanMingXiu coming towards him.
ZhouXiang also stood up and smiled at him.
YanMingXiu, "Come out.”
ZhouXiang stared blankly for a moment and followed YanMingXiu out of the tent. The two went to a place far away from the crew and hid behind a few trees. These people could hardly see them.
ZhouXiang smiled, “You're still mad? I came back yesterday but you had left. I was quite disappointed.”
YanMingXiu ignored his pitiful words and asked bluntly, “You didn’t tell anyone about my relationship with you right?”
ZhouXiang was dazed for a moment, “Why would I? I don't have a hobby of sharing my private life.”
YanMingXiu’s expression eased a little but he immediately thought of something and impolitely asked, “Are you really a homosexual or bisexual?”
ZhouXiang helplessly responded, “I only like men.”
“You and that makeup artist seem pretty close.”
ZhouXiang smiled, “Are you jealous? I was the one who introduced MiYou into the company. We are only friends.”
YanMingXiu sneered at the word 'jealous'.
ZhouXiang was just joking but he didn't expect YanMingXiu to be so disdain. Feeling a little awkward, he asked embarrassingly, "You treat WangYuDong so good, specially bringing him a meal. It couldn't be that you like him, right?”
ZhouXiang was only casually asking, but YanMingXiu's expression became very unsightly. He bluntly responded, "He is my sister's boyfriend. Don't talk nonsense."
ZhouXiang is surprised. So that's what it is. No wonder they are so close but WangYuDong hid this very well. No one knew that he has a girlfriend.
YanMingXiu coldly added, “This matter can't be exposed.”
“Don’t worry,” YanMingXiu’s tone became more and more impolite. ZhouXiang felt that it was meaningless to continue on talking to him. Although ZhouXiang has a good temper, it is usually toward people who he has a good relationship with. YanMingXiu treated him so distant, ZhouXiang was too lazy to compromise so he just said, "Gotta go" and left.
YanMingXiu stood and watched ZhouXiang’s back silhouette with his eyes slightly narrowed.
With ZhouXiang and WangYuDong wearing the same clothes, even YanMingXiu felt that it is difficult to distinguish the difference between them from behind. If ZhouXiang and WangYuDong's back silhouettes are not so similar, YanMingXiu really would not pay attention to him.
The conversation with YanMingXiu put ZhouXiang in a very bad mood in the afternoon. When he filmed the last scene, he NG six to seven times, everyone was waiting for him to finish so they could go eat. For ZhouXiang, who was rarely in this condition, having to drag filming for half an hour, everyone was very surprised.
Fortunately, ZhouXiang had a good harmonious relationship with everyone. They all waited patiently for him. ZhouXiang himself was very embarrassed. He tried to adjust his mindset and finally finished filming the last scene.
When it's time to stop work for the day, WangYuDong and YanMingXiu had already left. ZhouXiang gloomily packed up his own things and drove away.
Because the outdoor filming location was so far from the city, it took him more than two hours to get back. He was so hungry that his stomach was rumbling.
After getting home, he took big steps to rush up the stairs, but he stumbled while holding the takeout that he bought along the way.
YanMingXiu was leaning against the door frame with headphones plugged in his ears. Seeing him come up, YanMingXiu casually shot him a glance.
End of the Chapter