Superstar Aspirations

SA Chapter 93 (Part 2) – Picky Eater Rong Rong

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{Please read the original translations on SurrealSkyTranslations instead of supporting TL aggregator sites. Thanks!}

     Xu Jin just came back from chatting with the producer when he suddenly came face to face with Qin Cheng’s dark expression. He turned his head following the man’s line of sight and saw the scene where Rong Xu and Chen Feng were engaging in an enthusiastic conversation.

     Who was Xu Jin? He was super sharp and understood the entire scenario at a glance.

     (Xu Jin) laughed out loud before sitting in a chair next to (Qin cheng), saying: “Isn’t this normal? You and Rong Xu have only a few scenes together. Every time the prince appears, he’s either busy governing and controlling the court or serving his ill Father. If he doesn’t act with Chen Feng, what, is he supposed to do his scenes with you?”

     Qin Cheng slowly raised his eyes and cast a deep glance at Xu Jin.

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     (Xu JIn’s) body suddenly shivered, and the smile on his face immediately froze. All the hairs on his body stood straight up, and he quickly gave a cough and corrected himself: “But……but it’s nothing much. I know you like him, and something is still better than nothing. At least now you’re in the same crew. You can talk to one another and be within close proximity of each other.”

     Qin Cheng didn’t tell Xu Jin about their relationship, and likewise, Rong Xu didn’t tell Luo Zhentao.

     However, Qin Cheng hadn’t put much thought into this aspect, whereas Rong Xu had considered the situation from multiple angles. He felt that if he told Luo Zhentao, there would be too many unpredictable outcomes. For example, he recalled that after Luo Zhentao found out about his good relationship with Qin Cheng, he had contemplated whether to use Qin Cheng’s fame to pave the way for Rong Xu.

     As far as profit was concerned, Luo Zhentao was definitely the most qualified businessman. He and Rong Xu had a close relationship, but the two also had very different ways of going about things.

     In short, Rong Xu didn’t intend to tell Luo Zhentao any time soon.

     Not far away, Rong Xu and Old Chen were practicing their scenes with constant bouts of laughter. Meanwhile, Qin Cheng was flipping through his script silently, occasionally being dragged over by the martial arts instructor to learn some moves, and occasionally being occupied by other actors for chats or scene practices.

     In The Embroiderer, the male protagonist, Kong Chao, would be played by Qin Cheng, acting as the commander of the Elite Guards; the female protagonist, Sheng Xiangjun, was the daughter of a corrupt minister and would be played by a famous Film Empress, Huang Lei.

     The Elite Guard brothers (in-arms) who died bizarre deaths had all journeyed to undertake a criminal officials escort task. It was after completing that task that they began dying off one after another. The criminal official was prosecuted for treason of collaborating with enemies and was secretly escorted by the Elite guards back to the capital from Fujian. In the end, the guilty official was executed by Ling Chi, and all of his family members were beheaded as a public demonstration. They truly did wipe out his entire nine generations.

     Sheng Xiangjun was the last blood of the Sheng family. She was sent by her family in advance to hide in a brothel and escaped (the bloodshed). No one would ever believe that the blood of a famous civil servant would be hiding in the brothel, and the old madame of this brothel had once received a life-saving grace from Mr. Sheng in the past, so she risked her life to hide Sheng Xiangjun.

     Of course, Sheng Xiangjun did not believe that her own father would commit treason. Her father was a great scholar. Three loyal generations of the Sheng family, over two dynasties of rulers. The friendship between his father and the current ruler stemmed from their childhood, how could he possibly have colluded with the enemy?

     Thus, when Sheng Xiangjun discovered that someone was investigating her father’s case, her strong intellect led her to Kong Chao.

     Why were the Elite Guards dying one after another after participating in Old Sheng Ge’s case?

     Why would the decades-long loyal elder Sheng Ge suddenly commit treason?

     The entire movie revolved around this unsettled case, and the one who Qin Cheng would be acting with the most was Huang Lei (female lead). Huang Lei was thirty-five years old this year, eight years older than Qin Cheng, already married and had children. It was therefore highly unlikely for them to have any scandals. 

     Today, as she was practicing with Qin Cheng, she was surprised to find the other party blanking out several times.

     Afterwards, Huang Lei asked her own assistant in confusion: “What’s wrong with Qin Cheng?”

     Huang Lei has no interest in handsome men, but her assistant was a huge fan of Qin Cheng’s. Upon hearing this, the assistant immediately asked: “What’s wrong with God Qin?!”

     Huang Lei smiled helplessly: “Looking at how excited you are, do you like Qin Cheng that much? You like him so much yet didn’t even realize that Qin Cheng’s state was a little off today, almost reading the wrong lines while rehearsing?”

     The little assistant opened her eyes wide and said in disbelief: “Sister Huang, that’s impossible, right? I think God Qin’s state is very good. His lines are all perfect, and his temperament is also on point. I almost became immersed in the scene just standing here. He’s still so handsome.”

     Huang Lei: “……I shouldn’t have asked you.”

     In an obsessed young gal’s eyes, even if their male god sneezed, it would still be the world’s most handsome sneeze.

     Similarly, in the eyes of a certain man, if his family’s own youth fell down, it would be the world’s best looking fall…… Uh, that’s not right, he definitely wouldn’t let Rong Xu fall!

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     Of course, if Rong Xu could rehearse some scenes with him instead of constantly staying beside Old Chen, that would be much better.

     By noon, the props and lighting crews were all ready, and Rong Xu officially filmed his first scene since entering the crew of The Embroiderer.

     Old Chen lay supine on the bed, the yellow brocade robe covering him to hide the old man’s not-so-thin body. Only his face was exposed, yet he suddenly appeared extremely decrepit and sickly, with one foot in the grave.

     More than ten cameras were aimed at the set from all directions around the studio. Inside the gorgeous and exquisite bedroom set, Old Chen was lying on the dragon bed while Rong Xu was sitting on the edge of the dragon bed. The rest of the staff members were gathered around the set, waiting for each scene to end before hurrying makeup touchups to film the next scene.

     After confirming (the green light) with the camera crew, Old Liu waved his hands and shouted: “ACTION!” 

     The following moment, Rong Xu picked up the jade bowl on the side table.

     The lighting for this scene was quite peculiar. In the camera, the other aspects of the scene were clear and bright, but inexplicably, Rong Xu’s body was covered in a dark shadow. He and the dragon bed were both shrouded in a layer of indiscernible darkness, appearing dim and depressing.

     His Royal Highness was Ming’s next Emperor. He was young and handsome, and strove to govern well.

     Ever since the emperor accidentally swallowed some unknown medicinal pills two years prior and became seriously ill, the prince took on the role of supervising the land. Inside (the palace), he was filial to the emperor, personally serving him medicine daily and even helping the emperor clean up. Outside, he was an individual of great talents and stratagem, Ming Country was well organized under his governance – the people lived and worked in peace and contentment while foreign enemies dared not invade. The ministers of the dynasty all had a mouthful of praise for the crown prince.

     At the beginning of the movie, a nursery rhyme that children sang while they played on the streets rang out. There was one particular line in it that went ——

     “The east has jade, the people have rice.”

     The east referred to the East Palace, while jade (Lin Lang) referred to the Crown Prince Zhu Molang. Only with the crown prince could common people live and have food to eat.

     And so, in the first half of the movie plotline, Zhu Molang was simply a deity. He had an impeccable appearance, an outstanding demeanor, and brought about prosperity; he also had a heart full of benevolence. Everyone believed that as long as the crown prince ascended the throne, Ming Country would surely flourish.

     Right wow, Rong Xu needed to portray this perfect prince.

     The overall scene was quite simple. Zhu Molang would feed the emperor medicine, and the emperor would vomit all of it out onto the prince’s clothes. However, the prince wouldn’t show any traces of displeasure. Instead, he would respectfully wipe off the stains on his Father’s face, and say self-reproachfully: “It was This Son’s fault, not noticing that Father Emperor was unwell.”

     Which father wouldn’t like such a son?

     On the monitors, Rong Xu’s clear eyes were lowered and his brows were furrowed, seemingly as if he truly was blaming himself.

     Many staff members couldn’t help but feel distressed seeing him place the blame on himself like this.

     “If, after I grow old and get sick, my son would work hard and take care of me like this, I could laugh myself awake from my sleep.”

     “Rong Rong really is so beautiful, the epitome of a movie face, right? I glanced at the monitors just now. So nice.”

     “Reasonably speaking, such a good prince, even if he wasn’t my own son…… I would also let him become emperor.”
     Yes, in the movie The Embroiderer, the truth could be described in one phrase: ‘A Prince exchanged for a Tanuki (Civet Cat)’1.

{Please read the original translations on SurrealSkyTranslations instead of supporting TL aggregator sites. Thanks!}

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Footnotes:

1. Ming/Qing dynasty folk legend telling a story of how the Empress exchanged the real crown prince for a shape-shifting civet cat/tanuki


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6 thoughts on “SA Chapter 93 (Part 2) – Picky Eater Rong Rong”

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