Love Rival Is Getting Prettier Everyday - Chap 66
Chapter 66: You Chase Me I Chase Him
The official blog of posted Bai Qingquan’s exit photo at 9:00 PM last night. A group of moonlight powders ran over to blow rainbow farts.
“Brother’s beauty is prosperous!”
“Congratulations to His Majesty the Emperor!”
“Goodbye Zhou Jing, waiting for Qiao Yan!”
Qiao Yan was the name of the male lead of Bai Qingquan’s next sweet pet idol drama. Soon, a passerby noticed that a familiar face appeared in Bai Qingquan’s exit photos. Zheng Siqi’s fans confirmed it was the actor of Prince Zhou Ying, Zheng Siqi, by stripping the silk and cocooning*.
*(剥丝抽茧) Refers to making a painstakingly thorough investigation.
“Oh my God, is it really Zheng Siqi?”
“It’s rumored from the outside world that Prince Zhou Ying is not dead, and the ending has been changed. It seems to be true!”
“Today is also the day when Jintai Qiongying girls shed tears! Humbly ask for a HE*!”
*Buzzword short for happy ending.
“I think Li Xu is really miserable. Isn’t the screenwriter’s conscience hurting?!”
“I haven’t watched it for a month. I caught up recently with the last few episodes and it angered me to death. What the hell does He Lanbi, that bitch, want to do? Why does she want to abuse us? Li Xu is so pitiful!”
Yang Lizhi felt that this was her most unwise decision to take on this drama. Her role as the heroine should have been straightforward. Near the end, she should have had her moment to shine, featuring her counterattacks, but instead the audience was scolding her.
Ahhhhhhhhh! She felt wronged!
When Yang Lizhi debuted, she was an instant hit. For many years, she was ranked first as a Xiao Huadan. Her fans weren’t vegetarians. They had long disliked Shen Jintai.
Shen Jintai’s acting was… Okay. His fans were so hateful, though. They scolded He Lanbi on the internet daily… Although it hadn’t risen to the point of targeting her actual self, it was still a bit irrational. She couldn’t stand the constant scolding of her role every day!
Eventually, one of her big fans from her fan group contacted the moonlight powders. Both fandom couldn’t help but sigh. They both thought Shen Jintai was insignificant when the filming first started, so plum powders and moonlight powders fought against each other, afraid that the other would hype their own cooking.
Plum powders felt that whoever moonlight powders target, to them was viewed like a mad dog. Moonlight powders on the other hand, felt that plum powders were all brainless xxj*, but their combat effectiveness was bursting.
*[xiǎoxué jī ] (小学鸡) Childish, immature people who speak or behave stupidly (literally means “pupil chicken”).
As a result, Cheng Yaojin unexpectedly appeared halfway*. The explosiveness of The East Palace was hogged by Shen Jintai.
*(半路杀出个程咬金) Idiom referring to caught off guard/something unexpected happened. It’s in reference to Cheng Yaojin who’s often depicted in Chinese folklore as a somewhat inept and bumbling warrior who sometimes shows up at the right time and place to save the day. || In this context, it means that rather than Yang Lizhi or Bai Qingquan, Shen Jintai hogged all the popularity (unexpectedly).
The two fandoms had interacted frequently in the past few months and decided to join forces to fight against the gold powders not long ago. Unfortunately, Shen Jintai had not only his fans but passersby who defended him.
Surprisingly, when plum powders contacted moonlight powders this time around, moonlight powders remained collectively silent. They said they only wanted to praise their beauty and didn’t want to tear anymore.
Excuse me?! Is this still the invincible moonlight powders that’s known for their tearing?!
The moonlight powders had been in a delicate mood recently. The official blog of posted a behind-the-scenes footage during Chinese New Year’s of Bai Qingquan exit after his character was killed off. There was a shot of him and Shen Jintai hugging each other.
Even the president of the official support association of moonlight powders had recently spoken subtly, faintly pointing out that the relationship between the two was different from the past. Shen Jintai was truly reborn with his recent comeback. The moonlight powders all saw it with their very own eyes. Still, there was no way to eliminate the hostility they had had for so many years. Though they didn’t speak words of praise for him, many had already secretly poked him.
Moreover, moonlight powders found that the popularity of was not completely absorbed by Shen Jintai. On the 30th, Bai Qingquan announced his promotion for a well-known skin care brand that attracted many passersby. It firmly occupied the number one spot in the hot search that day. Though there was more news about Shen Jintai, he didn’t reach the top.
Plum powders felt that if the two of them joined forces, it would be beneficial to both parties. They wanted to use moonlight powders as a knife and thought the idea was ingenious! Shockingly, moonlight powders had refused to cooperate now.
The car came to a stop. Shen Jintai sat in it as he glanced at the villa. It’s been a long time since he returned to his home.
As soon as he got out of the car, he saw a little girl running over. “Brother!”
Shen Jintai squatted down, and a little girl in a pink down jacket rushed into his arms. He became a little shy as he said, “You came to greet me?”
“She got up early to wait for you. She’s been waiting behind the door all morning.” Liu Qi walked out with a smile.
Xiao Tang helped him unload all the things he had brought from the trunk. Liu Qi enthusiastically accepted some and said, “Why did you buy so many things when you’re coming back to your own home?”
Shen Jintai picked up Shen Xiaomei and saw a middle-aged man in his forties standing at the door with a fair face and jet-black hair. He had a shallow furrow between his eyebrows, making him look stern.
Shen Jintai held himself back and didn’t call him “dad”. Instead, he only nodded at Shen Ruhai.
Shen Ruhai said, “You’re back.”
Shen Jintai: “Nn.”
After Xiao Tang carried the things in, he left. Shen Jintai carried Shen Xiaomei into the house. Shen Xiaomei had missed him a lot. She hugged his neck and pressed her face against it as she remained silent. Such a well-behaved little girl made Shen Jintai’s heart soften instantly.
Perhaps it was due to their relationship by blood, but he felt closer to her than with other children.
“You are so old now. Don’t cling to your brother all day. Come down quickly,” Liu Qi lightly chided.
“It’s okay.” Shen Jintai chuckled as he continued to carry Shen Xiaomei into the house.
The house was wholly different from when he left it. There were many more items now, and there was a trivial atmosphere of life everywhere. As Liu Qi closed the door, she said, “I didn’t invite a maid to clean up. I did it myself, so it’s still a bit messy.”
The Shen family used to be wealthy. The skinny camels were still bigger than horses. They still had a lot of assets, so it wouldn’t have been a problem to hire a maid. There must have been an underlying reason why they didn’t hire someone. Shen Jintai wasn’t sure if it was related to him. When he looked at Shen Ruhai, he had a sense that he was a very traditional, old-fashioned, proud man.
Shen Jintai and the couple were unfamiliar with each other. They didn’t know what to talk about. Liu Qi tried to find something in common and started to talk about . “Recently, relatives and friends are all watching it. They praise you for your good performance.”
At the end, she added, “Your dad is watching too.”
Shen Jintai smiled and thought to himself thankfully there was a child here. Otherwise, it would be embarrassing listening to her praises.
He was playing with Shen Xiaomei as they watched cartoons together. Liu Qi was busy cooking and Shen Ruhai was holed up in the study. He only came down during dinner. Shen Jintai felt as if Shen Ruhai wanted to talk to him but didn’t know what to say. He often had an eager look on his face, signaling as if he wanted to chat, but he ate silently. When his phone rang, he went out to take the call.
Liu Qi said to Shen Jintai, “If you are free in the future, come back and visit. Your dad actually misses you. He originally thought that you entered the entertainment industry to… To play. Recently, he’s been chasing The East Palace. Hearing relatives and friends praise you, he couldn’t help but feel proud. Don’t mind him. He’s just like this and doesn’t speak much. He’s been under a lot of pressure recently that his hair had turned gray. When he heard you were coming to visit, he went out and dyed it.”
Shen Jintai was speechless, so he simply nodded. Hearing this poked his feelings and made him a bit sad.
Liu Qi smiled and said to Shen Xiaomei, “Alright, get down. Your brother is leaving.”
Shen Xiaomei hugged Shen Jintai’s neck. “I don’t want brother to go.”
“Why don’t you stay for Chinese New Year?” Liu Qi said with a smile.
“Auntie Fang has sent a car to pick me up.” Shen Jintai said softly.
Not spending New Year’s with one’s own family but instead at someone else’s home was a bit inappropriate to talk about. Mrs. Yan was thoughtful and made a few phone calls to urge him without directly stating her intention, and thus a car was sent over to pick him up.
Shen Xiaomei wailed sadly. Her sincere affection moved Shen Jintai.
When Shen Jintai had just left, Shen Ruhai came back carrying some fruit. Liu Qi said, “When you heard Jintai was visiting, didn’t you buy lots of fruit? Now you bought more again.”
Shen Ruhai glanced into the living room and asked, “Gone?”
Liu Qi let out a “Nn” and said, “The Yan family came to pick him up.”
Shen Ruhai didn’t respond. He took off his shoes silently.
“He’s never celebrated Chinese New Year with us before,” Liu Qi said as Shen Ruhai went downstairs to coax Shen Xiaomei, who had been crying in the room.
*Clarity: Just want to point out that my suspicion, and it was also hinted, why they didn’t hire household staff for help is mainly due to it affecting Shen Jintai’s reputation. He’s now a big and rising star, and if rumors get out about his current family’s condition, it may affect his reputation. Seeing the way Shen Ruhai acts, it seems like he really does love his son, just has a hard time showing it and this was one of the ways he could do it. (You know, the stereotypical old-fashion dad who’s more about actions speaking louder than words type.)
Shen Jintai thought that during New Year’s, the Yan family would all be relaxing at home. When he got there, he learned that most of the members were still busy.
Mrs. Yan: “This is the busiest time of the year. There are social dinners everywhere. Your uncle Yan couldn’t stay home even on the 30th.”
All of the household staff had gone back to their homes to celebrate the Chinese New Year’s. On the evening of Chinese New Year’s Eve, it was just the two of them. Mrs. Yan and Shen Jintai wrapped dumplings together. After eating, they watched TV for a while, then went to bed.
Shen Jintai had been extremely tired these days. It was rare for him to have a vacation, so he wanted to catch up on his sleep. After taking a shower, he laid down on the bed intending to sleep, but messages and calls kept coming in. It was warm New Year’s wishes from various acquaintances. Some he was familiar with, others he wasn’t.
Being popular had its own problems. Shen Jintai realized that he couldn’t just receive New Year’s greetings. He also had to send them himself . For those he wasn’t familiar with, he would use a mass distribution. For those with whom he was better acquainted, he would personally write his own greetings. For Bai Qingquan’s, he was especially attentive.
Shen Jintai pondered what his little 0 beauty was doing. With so many things going on since yesterday, he was so preoccupied that the sadness of their parting had been diluted. Lying on the bed now, he realized that yesterday was Bia Qingquan’s exit.
With their busy schedules, there wouldn’t be many opportunities for them to meet again. Bai Qingquan’s favorability of him had risen a lot but hasn’t reach the stage of love yet. He got a headache contemplating how he could further develop these feelings in the future.
As he was lost in his thoughts, he received a text from Bai Qingquan replying back to his message: [This isn’t a mass message from you, is it?]
Shen Jintai replied: [From the conscience of heaven and earth*, it was written word by word.]
* (天地良心) Idiom referring to having a clean conscience and uprightness. || Basically, he’s saying something like, “I swear to God”.
Bai Qingquan suddenly called him.
Shen Jintai let out a light cough and connected the call. “Aren’t you watching the Spring Festival Gala* at this time?”
*TV show on the evening of Chinese New Year’s Eve featuring a variety of acts and performances.
“I just returned from out of town and haven’t even eaten dinner yet for New Year’s Eve. I’m accompanying my mother to a Guandi Temple* to burn incense early tomorrow morning. Now I don’t want to do anything except sleep.” Bai Qingquan’s voice sounded tired, but he spoke quickly. “How about you? It sounds peaceful over there.”
*(关帝庙) Also known as Guan Yu temple that honors the general Guan Yu of Shu Han in the Three Kingdoms period. Guan Yu encompasses loyalty, righteousness, faith, wisdom, benevolence, and courage that reflects the ethics, morals, and ideals of traditional Chinese culture.
“Me too. I’m laying down now and all I want to do is just sleep.”
“The crew is resuming work the day after tomorrow. Do you have any scenes? If you have time, while you still haven’t rejoined the crew, let’s meet for dinner.”
“Ok.” Shen Jintai became excited.
Bai Qingquan added, “Then I will also call Zheng Siqi.”
A knocking noise sounded outside. Shen Jintai sat up in bed and glanced at the door. Bai Qingquan said, “Then I’ll hang up now. I wish you a Happy New Year in advance.”
“Happy New Year.”
After hanging up, Shen Jintai shouted out, “Come in.”
The door of the room was pushed open, and Yan Yaoxuan was standing outside. He asked, “You’re not staying up to wait for New Year’s?”
“Not waiting. I want to sleep,” Shen Jintai answered with a smile.
Yan Yaoxuan let out a “Nn” and said, “Then have a good rest.” After speaking, he closed the door.
Shen Jintai let out a sigh of relief and laid down. Only the bedside lamp was on. He couldn’t fall asleep, so he started looking at The East Palace. While drowsy, he was suddenly awakened by the vague sound of firecrackers outside. He opened his eyes and saw that his phone was still playing a drama. The time in the upper right corner showed that New Year’s had arrived.
A beam of light hit the window. He sat up with a blanket in his arms, leaned over, and looked down from the window. He saw a black Bentley slowly parking in the yard. Yan Qiuchi got out of the car, and, wondering if Shen Jintai was aware of his return, he glanced up.
When Shen Jintai saw that Yan Qiuchi had caught sight of him, he opened the window magnanimously, hung his body on the windowsill, smiled, and said, “Happy New Year.”
Shen Jintai was dressed in pajamas that looked smooth and soft. This gave his body a look of warmth that accentuated his bright smile. His voice was slightly coarse and lazy.
Yan Qiuchi kept his gaze as he responded, “Happy New Year.”
The tree branches were depressed in winter. As soon as the wind blew, the last withered leaf fell from its force. Yan Yaoxuan followed the voices from outside. He didn’t see Shen Jintai but only heard his voice. Casting his gaze towards the stairs, he saw his older brother standing at the bottom of the steps. His expression looked dull, but his eyes were full of stars.
Everyone slept quietly in the winter, but both the Yan brothers had insomnia. When Yan Qiuchi woke up the next day, he had a pillow in his arms.
The latest episode of was broadcast on the second day of the new year. The drama had been building a tremendous amount of momentum in the past few months and, right after the Spring Festival, its rating broke past 5.
It was the hottest drama of the new year, so much so that if you didn’t watch it, you had nothing to talk about with your friends and family.
The topic [The East Palace rescues single men and women] quickly reached the hot search. Usually during New Year’s, the hot search would be [Do you have someone to spend New Years with?]. Now it had changed to [Have you seen The East Palace yet?].
Throughout the New Year’s break, the two satellite stations broadcast in cycles all day. The preview for next week’s trailer had more cuts than usual. Some of the cuts included scenes from the week after the next. The most exciting scene was with Li Xu, who was at the peak of his power, wearing a red mink robe, sitting on a chariot as he braved the heavy snow.
All the eunuchs and palace attendants he passed by on the road knelt and bowed to him. However, his face retained a look of indifference and grandiosity, as he rubbed the jade pendant around his waist.