The two of them returned to the entrance of the rest area, but Wen Zhecheng didn’t go in.
“You go rest, I’ll go backstage and take a look.”
Rong Yuheng nodded and pushed the door open to go inside.
Inside the rest area, there were five or six contestants sitting, with two of them nursing pulled muscles and applying spray.
Bian Chen sat in the corner with a gloomy expression, and no one approached within a two-meter radius.
Rong Yuheng believed he had the blessings of Buddha’s light, so he strolled over slowly.
Bian Chen sensed the approaching figure and lifted his eyelids to give him a glance.
“Don’t bother me.”
Rong Yuheng turned a deaf ear and cheerfully sat down next to him, emitting waves of care.
“Brother Chen, are you in a bad mood?”
Bian Chen replied, “None of your damn business.”
Rong Yuheng pondered for a moment.
“How about I perform some magic tricks for you?”
Bian Chen choked on his breath, almost unable to exhale.
“Who the fuck wants to see you perform magic tricks!” He wasn’t satisfied after speaking and added, “It’s useless.”
Rong Yuheng’s lips twitched.
He was afraid that he wouldn’t be able to contain his laughter and would be beaten up by the irritable Bian Chen.
But Bian Chen’s curse words were really funny.
After spitting out his grievances, Bian Chen felt somewhat relieved.
He grabbed his hand and started ranting, “Stupid plagiarizing dog, even the plagiarism is so damn awful.”
Rong Yuheng was momentarily stunned.
Bian Chen let out a disdainful snort.
Rong Yuheng rummaged through his goldfish-like brain for a while before pulling out a face from deep within his memory.
Bian Chen seemed disgusted by the term.
“Roommate, my ass! He’s just a cursed pig!”
Rong Yuheng, “…” *Pfft* *Pfft* (laughter).
Bian Chen, “I had my lyrics on the desk, and I’ve never guarded against anyone! It was only when I heard him perform the original song on stage that I realized several lines were my lyrics, with just a few words changed!”
Rong Yuheng was filled with righteous indignation.
“That’s too much!”
Bian Chen spat, “Damn it!”
Rong Yuheng, “Damn it!”
Rong Yuheng and Bian Chen’s collaborative cursing session came to an end when Xu Sun called.
Having been interrupted multiple times, Rong Yuheng had developed a keen sense of Xu Sun’s character.
He was considering changing his contact name to “The Terminator.”
Rong Yuheng answered the phone, “Sun Ge.”
Xu Sun’s voice sounded hesitant.
He first expressed his admiration for Rong Yuheng’s performance in the competition and then went on to lament about the hardships of life…
Rong Yuheng knew he had something important to say, so he patiently listened without interrupting.
As expected, after beating around the bush, Xu Sun finally got to the point.
“Xiao Rong, the variety show we talked about last time has fierce competition.
You’ve just signed as a trainee and haven’t debuted yet… Our company’s Zai An is preparing for his debut and needs more exposure.”
Rong Yuheng understood.
It meant that his resources were being taken away.
Xu Sun continued, “Zai An is also an artist under my management.
In the future, he’ll be your older brother, so take care of each other.”
Rong Yuheng maintained a calm tone.
“Okay, no problem.
Thank you, Sun Ge.”
Xu Sun let out a sigh.
“I knew you would be understanding.
I’ll keep an eye out for resources for you in the future.”
After Xu Sun hung up, Rong Yuheng pursed his lips, unable to express his true feelings.
There was certainly disappointment, and perhaps a slight trace of anger.
But it was just a small amount.
In the entertainment industry, it was common for resources to be snatched away.
Xu Sun had been relatively polite to him, making a special phone call to explain the situation.
Rong Yuheng leaned back on the sofa and let out a long breath.
He had no right to feel resentful.
Seeing his strange expression, Bian Chen temporarily set aside his cursing directed at Fu and asked, “What’s wrong?”
Rong Yuheng shook his head.
Bian Chen impatiently said, “I fucking hate it when people tell me ‘nothing’.”
Rong Yuheng regained his composure.
“Then curse with me.”
Bian Chen said, “Stupid idiot!”
Rong Yuheng said, “Intercepting dog!”
Both of them exclaimed, “Damn it!!”
It felt good.
With Ke Ting’s guidance, Zhou Shubai’s performance this time went smoothly without any mishaps.
When he came off the stage, he still had lingering fears.
Zou Yi was very concerned.
“Your brother is giving you stage PTSD.”
Zhou Shubai didn’t say anything.
Zou Yi still remembered the first time he saw Zhou Shubai.
He thought he was extremely arrogant and full of himself.
Now, he looked pitiful and deflated.
He couldn’t help but feel angry.
“How could your brother do this?”
Zhou Shubai shook his head in response.
“He’s not as bad as you think.
Besides being arbitrary, domineering, self-centered, and unyielding… he’s usually very good to me.”
Zou Yi’s emotions were complex.
He deliberately ignored the long list of derogatory words and asked cooperatively, “How is he good to you?”
Zhou Shubai replied, “He buys me all the latest car models, allows me to wander around the family’s properties as I please, and has given me more than ten BVLGARI watches…”
Zou Yi gasped for breath.
Such luxurious treatment!
He couldn’t help but comment, “I used to think you were the typical young master from a wealthy family.”
Zhou Shubai leaned in, “And now?”
“Now, you’re more like a wealthy young lady.”
The second round of the qualifying competition was coming to an end.
The audience voting channel was closed, and the next step was the mentors’ votes.
Unexpectedly, Rong Yuheng also received mentor votes this round.
Jin Zhiyao picked him.
Qiao Tan’s gaze became even more meaningful…
Jin Zhiyao avoided eye contact and pretended to be calm, “Xiao Rong’s stage presence is very strong, so I voted for him.”
Qiao Tan said, “2D stage.”
Jin Zhiyao, “…”
The end of this round meant that five more members would be eliminated.
Shi Lu had mentally prepared himself, but when the moment of elimination came, he cried so much that his nose was running.
Sitting in the front row of the bus on the way back, Shi Lu sat with Rong Yuheng.
The window was wide open, and the wind blew directly into their faces, causing his glistening tears to flutter in the wind.
Rong Yuheng, sitting in the back row, could even feel a faint coolness coming from the front.
He looked at the receding street scenes outside the window, emptying his mind, not wanting to delve into what it all meant.
As waves of trainees were eliminated, the remaining number of people decreased.
Rong Yuheng felt uncomfortable.
Maybe it was because they had been together for a long time, and their bond had deepened.
He watched as his companions, with whom he had spent countless days and nights, left one by one, but he couldn’t stop them.
Perhaps it was also because of Xu Sun’s phone call at noon, where the resources promised to him were intercepted by someone else, and he could only act magnanimous about it.
Various pent-up emotions churned in his chest, growing thicker and heavier, like a burdensome stone that made it hard for him to breathe.
Rong Yuheng felt tears welling up… He was no longer the happy-go-lucky fool he used to be.
He saw the complexities of the adult world, and his once straight back was gradually hunching over.
Pu Zaixi turned his head and saw Rong Yuheng in a bad mood, immediately becoming worried.
“You look terrible.
Take a moment to adjust.
We’re about to shoot a farewell scene, and if people don’t know better, they’ll think you got eliminated.”
Rong Yuheng, “…”
He had to pretend to be strong!
Zhou Shubai also expressed his concern, “Yuheng, are you sick? Should I have our family’s private doctor come and take a look?”
Pu Zaixi was astonished, “Your family has a private doctor?”
Zhou Shubai pretended casually, “Oh… it’s nothing.
Just a professional medical team my brother hired.
They take care of things like wisdom teeth for me.”
Pu Zaixi and Zou Yi, “…”
They felt that he needed more intellectual care.
The words “my brother” finally struck a chord with Rong Yuheng.
He forcefully pulled himself out of his melancholy mood, his face pretending to be flushed.
“I’m not sick.
Don’t call your brother’s medical team.”
He was afraid of being assassinated.
Zhou Shubai regretted missing a chance to show off his wealth and sighed, “Oh.”
As they walked towards the building, they happened to encounter Ke Ting.
Ke Ting had just done a great favor for Zhou Shubai, so both Zhou Shubai and Zou Yi were quite close to him.
Even though he was an outsider to the Orange team, they readily included him.
Zou Yi said, “Teacher Ke, are you going upstairs too? Let’s go together.”
No teacher would refuse to be welcomed by their students, so when Ke Ting heard this, he immediately showed restrained delight.
The four members of the Orange team walked upstairs with a bunch of garlic, while Rong Yuheng still looked listless, exuding a melancholic aura.
Ke Ting noticed his low mood and reflexively started worrying.
“Xiao Rong, what’s wrong? Are you unhappy?”
Rong Yuheng thought about the variety show that was snatched away from him and felt unappreciated.
He sighed softly, rubbing his little belly.
“One pregnancy leads to three years of foolishness.”
Ke Ting gasped, “…!?”
Ke Ting’s gaze instantly became strange as he cautiously moved between Rong Yuheng’s throat and chest, finally landing on his flat abdomen with a hint of affection.
Ke Ting’s expression was easy to understand, and the atmosphere among the four suddenly cooled.
The other four were speechless.
Although the other three besides Rong Yuheng hadn’t grasped the concept of “unappreciated talent,” they knew he couldn’t possibly be really pregnant.
They figured he was playing some kind of cold joke.
But Ke Ting… believed it!
…The four of them let out a slow breath, feeling drained even of the energy to explain.
With such thought processes, it was no wonder he had always been an outsider to the Orange team.
As they parted ways in the hallway, Ke Ting still hadn’t noticed the change in atmosphere and remained immersed in his mind-blowing imagination… Scenes from “So You’re a Handsome Man” and “Secretly in Love with You” played on repeat in his mind, deconstructing and reassembling, to the point that he was still in a daze when he floated back to the rest area.
Ke Ting sat in the rest area, his gaze wandering, landing on an unnamed spot in the distance.
He thought about Rong Yuheng’s “living like a joke” in the first half of his life, as well as the plight of having to rely on debuting to make a living, gradually imagining all sorts of transcendent possibilities… with a hidden trend towards tragic romance.
As a meddler, Ke Ting couldn’t sit still.
His heart was restless, feeling as though an earth-shattering secret was about to be revealed before his eyes.
He had to prevent a human tragedy from unfolding before the worst could happen!
Ke Ting regretted not having physical contact with Rong Yuheng during the dance class.
If he had, relying on his experience, he would surely have noticed the other’s gender.
As he thought about this, a flash of lightning suddenly crossed his mind…
Wasn’t there the tango he danced with Rong Yuheng!
Ke Ting took out his phone and immediately dialed Wen Zhecheng’s number.
At this moment, Wen Zhecheng was at the company, and his assistant, Xiaotang, brought him several movie scripts to read.
Accepting scripts had its intricacies; he not only had to assess the quality of the script itself but also consider which production team had invited him.
The complex relationships involved in this decision-making process, including interpersonal connections and favors, even gave Wen Zhecheng a headache.
Just as he was in pain, Ke Ting’s call came in.
Wen Zhecheng had his phone on silent during work hours, and Xiaotang noticed it and said, “Cheng-ge, it’s a call from Teacher Ke Ting.”
Wen Zhecheng was momentarily stunned, and a sense of anticipation inexplicably arose in his heart—did Ke Ting have something urgent and couldn’t come, so he wanted Wen Zhecheng to substitute?
With this hidden excitement, Wen Zhecheng restrained himself from answering the call too quickly.
He picked up the phone gracefully, pressing the “answer” button with his thumb.
Xiaotang couldn’t help but speak up, “Cheng-ge, if you don’t want to answer, you can hand it over to me, and I’ll say you’re not here.”
Wen Zhecheng said, “…I do want to answer.”
Xiaotang responded, “Oh, I just thought you were being a bit artificial in answering the phone.”
Wen Zhecheng inwardly thought he had overdone it and made a mistake, so he quickly answered the call.
He cleared his throat and his deep voice calmly transmitted through the receiver.
Ke Ting’s loud voice echoed through the small workspace as soon as he spoke.
“Teacher Wen, have you ever touched Xiao Rong’s body!”
Wen Zhecheng and assistant Xiaotang both trembled with a soul-shaking shock.
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