It's likely that TanYin was aware that the people nearby are people they knew so he didn't say anything during the flight, giving ZhouXiang some peaceful quiet time for a while.
After the plane landed, the staff walked out one after another. When ZhouXiang passed by the first class area, he saw YanMingXiu reading a book in his seat. YanMingXiu pointed his chin to the seat next to him and ordered him to "sit down" when he saw him.
ZhouXiang can only sit down.
YanMingXiu voiced, “I didn’t bring my assistant. These few days, you can just take on that role and be my assistant."
The minor actors and actresses around them all heard it and immediately looked at ZhouXiang with envy, wishing that they could replace him. TanYin, who came out from behind ZhouXiang was stunned as he looked at him inconceivably, his mind secretly scheming on something.
ZhouXiang, “Why didn't you bring Assistant Jiang?"
“He has to help me with other things.”
“Then……you didn't bring anyone?" WangYuDong alone brought nine people. The lead actress is also a big-named celebrity and she brought four people with her. YanMingXiu unexpectedly didn’t bring anyone.
YanMingXiu faintly responded, “I am not used to having strangers following me.”
Seeing that most people had left, YanMingXiu said, “Let’s go.”
ZhouXiang consciously grabbed YanMingXiu’s luggage; one person taking two suitcases and got off the plane. Fortunately, men don't have many things. He just brought two sets of clothes with him. YanMingXiu didn't seem to have the awareness of being a big celebrity; even his luggage was packed by ZhouXiang.
After leaving the airport, they took the bus and rushed to the shooting location.
Although everyone was already tired, they didn't have much time to rest. Staying an extra day out of town will cost an extra day of expenses. The director requested that they must arrive at the shooting location today.
It took more than seven hours of driving to get to the mountain junction between Guizhou and Guangxi. After arriving at their destination, it was already pass two in the middle of the night.
The place was not completely closed off. Because of the beautiful scenery and excellent conditions, three to four filming crews had come here before to film, bringing in the local tourism industry. Several hotels were built here last year. They settled in the newest one. Because of the difficulty with transporting materials, even the best rooms were only rated at a three-star standard. These limited rooms were given to the director, YanMingXiu, WangYuDong and the main actress.
When the production assistant was allocating the room keys, ZhouXiang was getting his jacket from the suitcase. It is really cold in the mountains; once they got out of the car, it is chillingly cold.
The production assistant arranged for ZhouXiang and a crew member from the camera team to be in the same room. ZhouXiang was just about to get the room card when YanMingXiu suddenly interjected, “Wait a minute.”
His voice was not loud but everyone became quiet.
YanMingXiu pointed to ZhouXiang, “He's my temporary assistant and will stay with me (as in staying in the same room).”
The production assistant is stunned and awkwardly muttered, “President Yan. That room only has a big single bed.”
“I could just sleep on the floor.” ZhouXiang interjected before YanMingXiu could respond. ZhouXiang did this to prevent YanMingXiu from saying something he shouldn’t say. But in other people's ears, it seems that ZhouXiang was afraid of YanMingXiu backing out of sharing a room with him.
The production assistant could only hand over YanMingXiu's room card to ZhouXiang and added, "You don’t have to sleep on the floor. I'll ask them to send an extra bed to the room.”
ZhouXiang followed YanMingXiu to the room.
The room only has 2.2 meters size double bed. The decor is very ordinary but it is very clean. Most importantly, it is very spacious. The value of land at this place is not worth a not money. Furthermore, it is all agricultural land. The farmers have free reign to develop but there was nobody in charge. Therefore, this one being one of the best rooms is at least thirty to forty square meters (up to 430 sq. foot) in size.
YanMingXiu sat on the bed and ordered ZhouXiang, “Hang up my clothes and put the things away.”
ZhouXiang had been an independent person since childhood so he's an expert in taking care of himself and of others. Just when YanMingXiu opened his mouth, ZhouXiang had already opened their luggages and starting hanging up the clothes and putting all the toiletries away. In just a short time, he had everything unpacked and put away.
At this time, there was a knock on the door, ZhouXiang responded, “Who is it?”
“Hello sir. We came to deliver an extra bed.”
ZhouXiang was just about to open his mouth when YanMingXiu interjected, "Don't need that.”
The person hesitated outside the door, “Mister, are you sure?”
YanMingXiu responded, “No need. You guys can go back."
ZhouXiang didn't say anything. This was not something he can decide. Besides, it's a waste not to sleep on such a big bed. He's not that prideful.
YanMingXiu got up and went to take a shower. After he came out, ZhouXiang went in to shower. When ZhouXiang came out, YanMingXiu was already lying on the bed. He seemed very tired.
After a day of hustling and bustling around, everyone is tired. ZhouXiang also planned to quickly sleep since he didn't know how busy they will be tomorrow.
ZhouXiang climbed into bed and turned off the light.
When the lights went out, the room is dark.
YanMingXiu slowly reached over and hugged his waist from behind. His warm and pleasant scent drifted into ZhouXiang's nose.
He felt that if he was to not think about anything…not think of the past or of the future, and just simply lay in YanMingXiu's embrace, it is as if they are a most intimate couple. This kind of feeling is really intoxicating.
ZhouXiang intended to loosen up. What he needed most now is a good rest.
YanMingXiu spoke right at this time. His voice sounded very faint and very soft, “ZhouXiang, are you hiding something from me?”
ZhouXiang didn’t know what YanMingXiu meant by this. He asked cautiously, “I don’t understand what President Yan means.”
YanMingXiu, “The feelings you give me is too familiar. It's as if I've known you and have lived with you before. Why is this?"
ZhouXiang forced himself to responded, "Maybe this is fate.”
If it wasn't because they are fated, they would not be in the predicament of today…with a relationship that is so unclear in both past and current lifetimes.
“ZhouXiang. Tell me….If a person had been missing for more than two years, do you think he may still be alive?”
ZhouXiang’s tensed up and smiled, “Most likely impossible. If still alive, he would have come back already.”
“Why can’t he be alive? It could be that he didn't come back because he doesn't want to come back.”
ZhouXiang is silent for a moment, “President Yan, are you talking about the other ZhouXiang?”
ZhouXiang clearly felt YanMingXiu’s body stiffened. Then YanMingXiu asked, “How much do you know about him?”
“I don’t know anything at all. I just heard from what others have said.”
YanMingXiu quietly asked, “Then do you know what relationship I have with him?”
ZhouXiang’s heart tightened, What relationship? You say, what relationship?
He clenched his teeth in the dark, “I don’t know.”
YanMingXiu’s voice is like the rising of the quiet abyss, cold and empty, “I feel that he's not dead. He just doesn't want to come back."
ZhouXiang heard his own voice dissociated from his thoughts and automatically asked, “Why won't he want to come back?”
YanMingXiu didn't respond to his question, instead he tightened his arms around ZhouXiang.
On the second day, all the staff started work and began to choose the most suitable shooting location. In order to make the entry scene the best and most harmonious, it took them two days to choose the location.
The surrounding people's attitude toward ZhouXiang became more and more polite and friendly. This is because they had gotten along fine or a long time and also related to ZhouXiang being able to stay in the same room with YanMingXiu.
In the past two days, YanMingXiu didn’t need to participate in any scenes so he essentially stayed in the room most of the time. Everyone seemed to have gotten used to his 'not easily approachable' personality. Even his food is separately prepared.
When ZhouXiang was helping the camera team move equipment, TanYin came next to him and asked softly, “ZhouXiang, when did you get involved with President Yan? I've underestimated you.” His tone is full of resentment.
ZhouXiang lowered his head to assemble and install the frame, too lazy to respond.
TanYin squatted down and looked at him for a moment, then exposed a beautiful smile, “Are you still bearing grudges on me for breaking up with you? I also had no choice back then. The company demanded me not to be involved in that area (gay).”
ZhouXiang didn’t even look at him, “I've already said, I don’t remember.”
“Humph. You think that I really believe in your amnesia story that only appears in a Korean drama?” TanYin smiled, “I know that you remember me, you're just angry with me.”
ZhouXiang is helpless with this TanYin. It's not appropriate to swear at him or hit him. But still, he has to spend another half a month with him; ZhouXiang is really getting a headache.
Seeing that no one was around, TanYin leaned close to ZhouXiang and suddenly put his lips next to his ear and blow on his cheek, “Xiang Ge, why are you still so naive?”
ZhouXiang put a bit of distance between them. Seeing the ridicule in TanYin's eyes, he felt that evading is not going to work.
He stood up from the ground and pulled TanYin up, "Come here, I need to talk to you."
TanYin is stunned as he was being dragged by ZhouXiang toward the woods. This place is very vast, but sparsely populated. Everyone is busy so missing one to two people is hardly noticeable.
After entering the woods, ZhouXiang lit a cigarette and asked directly, "Xiao Tan. Tell me, what do you want?”
TanYin naturally reached out, took his cigarette, put it in his mouth and inhaled. Then he leaned toward ZhouXiang, using his waistline to rub against ZhouXiang’s waist. He responded vaguely, “Xiang Ge, you used to like me so much, I don’t believe that you've forgotten."
ZhouXiang smiled, “I really have forgotten. Let's not talk about the past, just talk about the present. What do you want? Want to sleep with me?”
“Yeah, I want to sleep with you.” TanYin pulled ZhouXiang's neck and laughed, acting coquettishly, "Ever since the company started to endorse me, my private life has been very strictly controlled. I haven't been out to have fun for a long time…been bored death." TanYin reached out and touched ZhouXiang’s lower body and blew on his cheek, “Xiang Ge, do you want to fuck me? You're hard too.”
ZhouXiang grabbed his hand, “Of course I'm hard since you're touching me.” He put TanYin’s hand behind his back and squinted his eyes, “Xiao Tan, I really don’t remember you, but my mom does. My mom said that you're a person of malicious nature and told me not to associate with you. Tell me. Shouldn't I listen to my mom?"
TanYin's expression instantly changed as he loosened his arm around ZhouXiang’s neck. He sneered, “ZhouXiang, I just want to live my life a bit better. The way you were then, you'll never succeed. I came to Beijing because I had a fallout with my parents. Do you know how hard my life was? Do you know how desperately I needed fame and success? Indeed, you really helped me at the time and took care of me, but I can't spend the rest of my life dawdling like that with you, right? Also, your mom don't approve of us. But it's different now, I have wealth and fame. I could choose……"
ZhouXiang lift his hand to stop his words, “Whatever you choose has nothing to do with me. Xiao Tan, I've already said it so clearly. The matters from the past, I will never gossip to other people so you can be rest assured. As for the future, I also don't want to have anything to do with you. Since we have this opportunity to work together, we should just make the best of it. If we run into each other, just nodding our heads is enough for me. So, don't come to bother me anymore. Let's not have any unnecessary interaction."
TanYin's face turned livid, his voice shaking, "You were not like this before, I don't believe it… you said that you will wait for me, you said you will…"
“I repeat, I – don’t – remember.” ZhouXiang adjusted his clothes, "If there is nothing else, I'll go back first." After saying that, he walked pass the furious looking TanYin and out of the woods.
After just taking a few steps, TanYin suddenly hugged him from behind, his voice choking with emotions, “Xiang Ge, these few years, I gave it all just to get to where I am today. I've been with (T/N) old and ugly men as well as women. I've lived an inhuman life but I don't regret it. I just want to step on all those people who looked down on me. Do you understand? You're a local; you have a place to live and food at home. Have you slept in a ¥300 wet and dark basement? You've never slept in a dinky hotel with a blanket full of cockroaches right? Your mother also cooks for you every day… You just need to have a fixed salary every month and can live comfortably. But I can’t. I have no way out. Xiang Ge, I like you. I really did like you before. Only you…only you have treated me genuinely well and cherished me. Only you were good to me when I was a nobody. But I… in all these years, I don't dare to see you. I have no face to see you. I thought, as long as I don't see you, my memories of you…you will still continue to hold and protect me. But now, there's nothing. Even you don't want me. Xiang Ge, do you hate me that much? I have everything now. I’ll buy you the things you like; I can introduce famous directors to you. Let's get back together, okay? I only need you to treat me with one-tenth of your affections from before, okay?"
T/N: Being with in this context alludes to having sex, being somebody's boy-toy
ZhouXiang became speechless on the spot and didn’t know what to say for a moment. He had come in contact with people like TanYin many times before. Those that came to this lustrous and dazzling big city full of dreams to be celebrity, in the end, would come to realize that the gap between reality and their ideal is far too great. Some people would work hard for a few years, consuming their youth, and still couldn't get a leading role. To strive for a little fame, they are willing to sacrifice anything.
ZhouXiang usually have sympathy for these children, but not at all overly. After all, a person's path was chosen by themselves. If they are willing to live an ordinary life, they can still live fine. But since they want to live a more vibrant life, they must pay a price.
Hearing these words coming from TanYin, ZhouXiang did not fully believe it. But the sadness in his tones is very real. Maybe this boy really thinks like that in his heart.
ZhouXiang grabbed his hand, turned around and sighed, “Xiao Tan, living is not an easy thing for anyone. Maybe you really liked me before and I might have really liked you too, but… no matter whether you believe it or not, I really don’t remember. So, I'm very sorry. I can't be with you again.”
TanYin looked at him startled. His tears strolled down his beautiful face and his expression seemed to be very astonished.
ZhouXiang patted his face, “You are good now. Sooner or later, you'll meet someone that can hit it off well with you, someone who thinks like you. I am not fitting. This is all I'll say. I am serious. So we should just keep our relationship as colleagues in the future.”
ZhouXiang exposed an apologetic expression. He nodded at him, then turned and left.
TanYin looked at his back from a distance. Gradually, he lowered his head with his fist clenched.
Two hours later, ZhouXiang followed the camera team up a hill. This hill is one of the shooting locations. The director asked them to observe the scenery after sunset. They will start filming tomorrow. Everyone had a very important mission.
After ZhouXiang left, TanYin went to WangYuDong's room and respectfully asked, “Dong Ge, were you looking for me?”
WangYuDong 'mnnn' and sipped his cup of tea, “I heard that you were with ZhouYang earlier and you guys chatted for a long time?"TanYin is shocked, “Yes.” He felt that WangYuDong was saying ZhouXiang’s name incorrectly but he didn't correct him. It's not that big a deal afterall.
“You know each other?”
“We are……all filming……"
“I'm not talking about right now, you guys know each other from before," his tone is clearing stating a fact.
TanYin quickly responded, "We signed for the same model company in the past. At the time, we indeed knew each other, but are not very close……"
“Okay Xiao Tan. When I sign a person into my company, you don't think that I'll look deeply into the person's background? You were involved with him, right?"
TanYin's forehead brokeout in cold sweat, “We…”
“It's nothing. Young people right?" WangYuDong smiled warmly, “Don’t have to be so tensed. It's all in the past. I know that you're very obedient now.”
TanYin looked up at WangYuDong in confusion, “Dong Ge, what instructions do you have for me?”
“You know, he and my little brother-in-law are a little too close."
TanYin didn't know why WangYuDong said this.
WangYuDong's tone is a bit cold, "This matter, I need to know more. YanMingXiu, he doesn’t like women. Don’t be surprised. Telling you this may not be a good thing but I don't think that you would dare tell it to others."
“Dong Ge, I definitely won't tell."
“Well, that’s good. I am his brother-in law after all. Toward this matter, I need to look after him on his sister's behalf. I can’t let some messed-up person stay close to him just because he wants to stay close to him. I need you to do me a favor. Help me confirm the relationship between the two. I can't ask this directly. You understand right?"
“Dong Ge, but… I am not close to ZhouXiang, how can I confirm…..?”
WangYuDong was just thinking about this issue. Suddenly, he felt that there was something strange about what TanYin just said. “Wait a minute, what did you call him?”
TanYin was stunned, “ZhouXiang?”
“ZhouXiang? Isn’t he called ZhouYang?”
“Dong Ge, are we talking about the same person? The one that is now acting as President Yan's assistant…”
“That's him.” WangYuDong's expression sank, “His name is ZhouXiang? Which Xiang?”
“The Xiang from Fei Xiang (to spread wings and fly).”
The teacup WangYuDong was holding slammed to the marble floor.
TanYin is so shocked he was shaking.
WangYuDong is so enraged that his expression changed. That minor stuntman is called ZhouXiang? He's actually also called ZhouXiang? This unlucky name, why won't it disappear!
He resentfully took out his cell phone and looked through his phonebook for a long time before finally finding CaiWei's name. After pondering for a bit, he finally understood what is going on. This minor stuntman would not be so bold to lie to him. This must have been instigated by CaiWei. Otherwise, he would not use another stuntman named with the name, “ZhouXiang.”
The call couldn't get connected to CaiWei's phone.
WangYuDong hung up and said to TanYin coldly, "I'll leave this matter to you. I don't care what methods you used, go confirm his (ZhouXiang) relationship with YanMingXiu's and immediately come tell me.”
TanYin is utterly confused but he could only mumble to agree.
End of the chapter