When all the lights focused on her alone, Su Shen was stunned momentarily before she smiled and got up to go on stage. Her dress was not long this time, so she soon arrived on stage. The female presenter smiled and presented her with the award.
The host over there was still warming up the crowd and said, “This year, Su Shen still has two more dramas to bring to you all. We look forward to her continuing to bring better works to everyone.”
The music’s rhythm was very bright and cheerful, which was especially suitable for this scene. Su Shen held the trophy and stood in front of the microphone, facing countless pairs of eyes below before diplomatically saying, “Thank you very much to all the friends who have been supporting me, and I also want to thank the committee for the recognition. I will continue to work hard to improve myself and strive to bring better results to everyone.”
Suddenly, there was a wave of applause from below. Although it was all for show, Su Shen still smiled and held the trophy as she walked down to sit in her seat.
The award ceremony resumed handing out the other awards. Ye Qianqian continued chatting with her about some hilarious things, deliberating ignoring Mu Yao at the side. Su Shen knew her intentions and still went along with it. Even if there were no grudges between female artists, they could become enemies if there was a conflict of interest.
After the awards ceremony ended, Su Shen sat in the car waiting for He Hua while scrolling through her phone. Fans of Yang Zhi and Mu Yao accused her of winning the award through foul play, which caused their fan bases to start attacking one another.
Netizen A: This b***h used a water army to manipulate the voting, being rich is so great.
Netizen B: Mu’s dogs should stop barking around. [vomit] Your idol’s drama flopped, stop throwing mud at others. [vomit] Already 30 and still acting in idol dramas, yes, our Su Su should respect her elders and give this award to her. [smiley face]
Netizen C: If it wasn’t for He Hua, would this b***h have such good resources? She would’ve still been acting in web dramas in some corner. [smiley face]
Netizen D: No matter how much the antis envy and hate, it’s useless. My Su Su has good resources and opportunities. Hardworking people will always get corresponding rewards. [smiley face]
After reading some of the comments, Su Shen became calm because it was the hype of the drama that helped her win the award. If it was usually, she might not have such a high popularity, but it was alright, she still had two dramas this year to strengthen her popularity.
It wasn’t until someone knocked on the window twice that Su Shen opened the door and got out. She saw He Hua standing outside with a woman wearing a black blazer dress. The woman appeared to be in her 30s and had an ordinary appearance, but she had a great aura, looking very smart.
“Let me introduce you, Yao Yin, she’s also a partner in our agency. She had been managing several new talents in our agency, but she will be your new manager henceforth. I have already transferred most of your matters to her in the past few days, so you can go to her if you need anything,” said He Hua solemnly.
The parking lot was empty. Looking at her new manager in front of her, Su Shen smiled and extended her hand, “Hello, Yao jie.”
“No need to be so polite,” Yao Yin smiled and shook her hand, with a slight smile on her face. “I’ll be responsible for your matters henceforth. When I get back, I’ll send you your recent schedule.”
“Okay, thank you.” Su Shen replied politely with a smile.
Seeing that she was still so polite, Yao Yin couldn’t help but look at her teasingly. “It’s rare for Xie Yan to have a girlfriend. A few days ago, he was so petty that he didn’t even let me accept any kissing scenes for you. I didn’t expect him to be so jealous.”
Hearing this, Su Shen cleared her throat. No wonder the scripts that He Hua gave her didn’t have any kissing scenes; it turned out that it was all because of Xie Yan.
He Hua was already accustomed to this and glanced at his watch before saying to Su Shen, “I need to fly to Europe to find Xie Yan later. If you have any issues, just contact Yao Yin.”
Hearing this, Su Shen just nodded before getting into the car. She also had to rush back to set overnight.
Sitting in the car, she searched Yao Yin’s name and found that she had indeed managed many big stars, including an international award-winning actress. However, most of them had already semi-retired. Before, she was a manager for another entertainment agency and later started an agency with He Hua and them. Naturally, opening one’s agency would definitely make more money.
After returning to the hotel, she took a shower and sat on the bed, opened her laptop, and found that Yao Yin had sent her a schedule. Looking through it, Su Shen found that she didn’t have too many engagements, but there would be a bit more in the last few days of the month because she and Xie Yan’s drama would begin promoting. She also had an audition for that movie in a few days, so she needed to carefully look through the script in the next few days.
Just as she was about to go to sleep, her phone rang. Seeing that it was Xie Yan, Su Shen deliberately took a long time to answer before lying in bed and said muffledly, “What do you want?”
The other end of the call went silent for a moment before a deep and mellow voice sounded, “I miss you.”
In an instant, Su Shen’s face turned red. She didn’t expect him to be so straightforward. Before, he would go around in a circle, but now, he had become like this.
“I don’t believe you. You used to come visit me, but you don’t anymore.” Su Shen muttered as she turned over in bed, putting her phone next to the pillow.
Hearing this, a chuckle came from the other end of the call, followed by a deadpan tone, “Do you miss me then?”
“I don’t miss you at all,” Su Shen immediately retorted, stretching her slender and fair arm over the blanket before closing her eyes. “I don’t want to talk to you anymore. I’m going to sleep.”
Every time, he would steer her to say that she missed him. She refuses to say it this time.
“Do you know what you seem like right now?” sounded a deep and mellow voice from the other end of the call.
As soon as she heard that, Su Shen knew that he wasn’t going to say anything nice, so she turned over and said to the phone, “I don’t wanna hear.”
At this, the person on the other end chuckled lightly, “You’re like a child who says one thing but means another.”
No one had ever said that to her before. Su Shen also realized that she had become a bit childish recently, no, it should be said that she became childish since she started dating Xie Yan.
“You’re the child here. I don’t wanna talk to you anymore.” Su Shen said and then immediately hung up the phone before covering herself with the blanket.
It’s a state that Su Shen had never dared to imagine before, but she didn’t know why she had become like this. Just as Xie Yan said, she now acted like a child who needed to be coaxed.
It was all because of Xie Yan’s influence. He was always teasing her even though he knew that she was too shy to say those words. Men were always so playful, especially someone like Xie Yan who was both cunning and playful.
On the day of the audition, Su Shen took a day of leave. Director Li knew that she was going to the audition and had even encouraged her. Su Shen was grateful and felt that if she didn’t perform well this time, it would be a letdown for Director Li’s recommendation.
When they arrived in Zhejiang, it was already 1:00 pm. Su Shen had to rush to the hotel where the audition was held immediately, and Yao Yin accompanied her, explaining the current situation to her.
“The audition for this movie has all newcomers. They don’t have much acting experience, so don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Director Li mainly likes the freshness and vitality of newcomers who have the courage to innovate. During your audition, try not to leave too many traces of your acting. Otherwise, there should be no problem.”
Sitting in the rear, Su Shen looked at the gloomy weather outside and felt that there might be a thunderstorm today. She took note of Yao Yin’s advice, knowing that sometimes a small detail could change many things.
When Su Shen arrived at the hotel, she immediately went up to the 8th floor wearing a cap and sunglasses. At the same time, two service staff seemed to have noticed her, but since Su Shen walked so quickly, they only took a few curious glances at her. The biggest con of increased fame was that it made going out inconvenient, but there were gains and losses, and there was nothing that could be done about it.
When she arrived on the 8th floor, there were young faces in the corridor discussing something, all of whom were there for the audition. When they saw Su Shen, two of them seemed excited, but most of them were wary. After all, they were newcomers and didn’t have much advantage compared to Su Shen.
Yao Yin led the way and Su Shen followed after her to the dressing room. Several newcomers who were also auditioning for the female lead were already seated inside, and they fell silent when they saw Su Shen. However, Su Shen spotted an acquaintance she hadn’t seen in a long time.
The woman sitting in front of the dressing table in a blue dress was none other than Tong Le. Su Shen didn’t expect to see her here and immediately sat down next to her and said, “I forgot that you graduated this year.”
Seeing her chatting with an acquaintance, Yao Yin simply glanced at Tong Le and then walked out of the dressing room.
Tong Le also didn’t expect to see her here. The woman sitting beside her was still as beautiful as ever. Even an ordinary person would know that Su Shen’s name had been the talk of the town lately, not to mention people in the entertainment industry. Her life seemed to have been a cheat, with good resources and such a great boyfriend, which would make anyone envy her.
“You’re so busy that I’m afraid to even freeload a meal anymore.” Tong Le laughed, but her expression was not as cheerful as before.
Su Shen noticed that she seemed to have altered her nose, but there were other people in the dressing room, so she didn’t want to ask anything and just started talking about something else.
“When do you have time? I’ll treat you to a meal.” Su Shen said with a slight smile, sitting there with her head turned and looking at the person next to her.
This was a modern movie, so there was no need to be styled for the audition. The staff would directly inform them to go to the audition room later. However, Su Shen knew that everyone sitting in this dressing room was auditioning for the female lead. She also noticed that Tong Le seemed different from before.
“Sure. If you pass the audition, remember to treat me to a meal.” She smiled and sat there nonchalantly looking at Su Shen.
The latter smiled and said, “Perhaps you might be the one to pass the audition. After all, Director Xu likes to use newcomers.”
Hearing this, Tong Le brushed a strand of hair behind her ear and said expressionlessly, “My acting is not as good as yours. How can I be better than you?”
Looking at her, Su Shen paused for a moment before smiling again, “You make it sound like my acting was great before.”
Knowing that she was referring to her acting in web dramas before, Tong Le just smiled. The two of them didn’t chat for long before a staff member notified them to go to the audition room, with Su Shen being the first one.
As she walked out of the dressing room, Su Shen looked back at the people inside, and then entered the audition room, thinking about the script’s plot. There were four people inside, the super-tanned middle-aged man was the director, and the other three were the producer, screenwriter, and assistant director.
Seeing her, the director in the middle smiled and handed her a sheet of paper. “Here are three scenes. You can choose which one to audition for.”
It was basically an improvisation. All three scenes were internal monologues without much dialogue. After looking through them, Su Shen said to the director, “I’ll audition for the first one.”
This was a scene where the female lead was moved by the male lead and suddenly doubted whether she should use him for revenge. But when she returned home, she found her mother writhing in pain in bed. She stood at the door, staring at the scene inside, and was suddenly determined to take revenge.
There was no dialogue, and it all relied on the expression in her eyes. The director and the rest didn’t seem to expect her to choose this scene, but they also didn’t say anything and just watched her performance silently.
The room was large, without any props; it was basically a performance without any physical objects. Taking a deep breath, Su Shen walked to the east side of the room. Then, her expression changed as she looked down slightly and walked forward aimlessly, not knowing what she was thinking. Suddenly, she looked up at the ceiling, pursed her lips, and continued to walk forward with a perplexed expression. Not knowing what she had heard, she suddenly widened her eyes and took a few steps forward to the wall, looking in the direction of the door with one hand propped on the wall.
From the director’s point of view, all that could be seen was Su Shen’s fingers gradually tightening on the wall, her lips tightly pursed, her face expressionless, only her eyes gradually turning red. As her five fingers clenched into a fist, tears started to trickle down her cheeks. She stared at the door fixedly, and after a while, she calmly wiped away the tears from her face with her hand before turning around and leaving.
After the scene ended, the female screenwriter immediately handed her a tissue, and Su Shen walked over and took it while thanking her.
“What’s your interpretation of the ending?” The director suddenly asked.
The director’s sudden question about the ending caught Su Shen off guard. She stood there for a moment before calmly replying while holding the tissue, “I think the female lead is a person who values relationships. Throughout her life, the only person who treated her well was her mother, so she also yearned for love. The male lead treated her very well, so she wavered and considered giving up her plan to use him. However, because she grew up with a seed of hatred, it was not easy to remove it completely. But she knows how good the male lead is to her. She loves him, even if she doesn’t want to admit that she fell in love with her enemy’s son. When the misunderstanding was resolved in the end, she still couldn’t get over the mental barrier in her heart. However, she still yearns for him, hoping that he will wait for her, even though in reality, he may have started a new family for other reasons.”
Hearing this, the female screenwriter laughed and said, “Your interpretation is exactly what I wanted to express. However, I have written it to be an open-ended ending. Why the male lead would start a new family is up to each person’s interpretation. What do you think is the reason why the male lead didn’t wait for the female lead?”
Facing their intense gazes, Su Shen pondered for a moment before answering earnestly, “People are realistic. As long as his love for the female lead isn’t the first priority, he won’t wait for her forever, and realistic factors will not allow him to wait for her forever.”
The director had heard that Su Shen didn’t come from a traditional performing arts background, and he liked that about her. He felt that actors who came from a traditional performing arts background had too many limitations in their acting styles, so he preferred to work with newcomers. The approach that some newcomers had toward acting was still not fixed, so there was a lot of room for development in their acting. Su Shen’s performance just now without any props or lines really moved him. Before, he had thought that Li Xun was exaggerating when he said that Su Shen was the top-rising female actress among the new generation. However, with what he had just witnessed, he believed that Su Shen’s potential was far greater than that.
“Okay, you can leave now,” the director suddenly said.
The director didn’t show whether he liked her performance or not, and Su Shen didn’t hesitate to bow slightly before turning around and leaving the audition room. Perhaps still immersed in the emotions from the scene, tears continued to fall from her eyes. Yao Yin came over and hugged her, leading her back.
After coming down and getting in the car, Su Shen then slowly came back to her senses. However, she realized that she hadn’t said goodbye to Tong Le. She asked Yao Yin, who was driving in front, “Do you know Tong Le?”
She had noticed that the way Yao Yin looked at Tong Le earlier was a little weird, even though it was a small movement, she still noticed it.
“Tong Le? The girl you were chatting with?” Yao Yin continued to turn the steering wheel, appearing calm without much emotional fluctuations before saying calmly, “She’s Yunxing Entertainment Fang zong’s woman. That Fang Kun likes these young girls the most. Although he has a wife, his wife turns a blind eye to it. It’s common in the industry. But Fang Kun has always been generous to his women. He gave her a role not too long ago. It’s worth noting that a starlet like Yang Zhi would normally be invited to play it..”
As for these unspoken rules, Yao Yin seemed to have become accustomed to them, as they were the norm in the entertainment industry. However, Su Shen still felt somewhat uncomfortable after hearing about it. Many people would choose this shortcut to fame, but she didn’t expect that Tong Le would also go down this path in just over a year.
This was just every person’s choice. So, all along, Su Shen felt very lucky. She had her sister to help her, and later, there was Xie Yan to help her. Otherwise, she might’ve still been just an extra in some drama. Su Shen would not dislike Tong Le for this. Although she wouldn’t choose this path, she also had no right to judge others for right or wrong, because Su Shen had also experienced the plight of relying only on herself. So, in the past, she had been climbing up the ladder. It was just that this life she was fortunate enough to have such a great family.
Despite this, she still felt a bit perplexed. By the time they returned to Shanghai, it was already 7:00 pm. There was no night shoot tonight, so she didn’t have to go to set and went straight back to the hotel. Yao Yin just had her wait for the news. Generally speaking, as long as the other newcomers didn’t stand out particularly, the role was hers.
The thunderstorm also started in Shanghai. Su Shen forgot to bring an umbrella, and she got quite wet when she rushed into the hotel after getting out of the car. In any case, she had to go back and take a shower.
Su Shen made her way to her room and swiped her room card. As she pushed open the door, she was surprised to see the lights on inside. Sitting on the sofa was a familiar figure who turned to look at her before saying, “Didn’t bring an umbrella?”
Seeing him, Su Shen immediately felt awkward and closed the door. The man got up from the sofa and walked towards her. Su Shen took only a few steps before she was grabbed by the waist and pressed against the wall. “Not bringing an umbrella when you go out, you don’t know to have someone fetch you one?”
He was too tall, and Su Shen found it exhausting to keep looking up at him, so she looked down and softly snorted, “Leave me be.”
Her face was still dotted with a few tiny raindrops, and her red lips pouted slightly, just like a sulky child. Xie Yan pursed his lips and couldn’t help but look down, his gaze piercing as he stared at her. “This matter can’t just leave you be.”
“So you knew it was raining outside, but you didn’t bother to call and ask if I had an umbrella. Instead, you sneakily launched a surprise attack. Didn’t you say you wouldn’t come back to see me?” Su Shen looked up and glared at him.
Her arms were covered in raindrops, and Xie Yan reached out to hold her round and soft shoulders with one hand while lightly stroking the damp strands of hair at the back of her head with the other. “Okay, I was wrong. I’ll come see you openly in the future,” he said with a chuckle.