Chapter 80

Full Level Bigshot Only Takes the Career Path Chapter 80


In the late hours of the night, the “Li Meng” trailer was still on the hot search. Meanwhile, the bustling official Weibo account of Strawberry TV was busy rolling out today’s Weibo tasks. The accumulated promotional posts were rushing to be published.  These posts were eagerly waiting to be shared with the world, and the official account wasted no time.In the midst of this, the official account quickly received warm Spring Festival greetings from the television program team of the “Spring Festival”, featuring the beautiful scenes of H City.

The “Spring Festival” program had long been a cherished tradition for Strawberry TV. Its content, filmed well in advance, would be meticulously reviewed and then broadcast to the nation after the turn of the year. However, in the lead-up to the festival, various sneak peeks and teasers would be showcased on the platform to build excitement for the TV station’s upcoming Spring Festival lineup.

@StrawberryTV: 【Happy】 Welcoming the Spring Festival with open arms, let’s celebrate this festive season together through our program “Spring Festival”…【Video】

Many fans who follow the television station usually pay attention to program announcements related to their favorite stars. While Strawberry TV just uploaded the program, some netizens merely glanced at it. “The Spring Festival”? Oh, it seems to be an old traditional program, no celebrity guest invitations, and nothing new…

But when they saw the paused video thumbnail below, they were instantly taken aback.

Hold on, are all the passersby in this interview video handsome guys??

Driven by their admiration for good looks, even though the handsome guy on the thumbnail wore a mask and a cap, it didn’t prevent anyone from realizing that he was an absolutely stunning man just based on his appearance. With such remarkable features and an unfiltered video interview, numerous netizens who stumbled upon Strawberry TV’s Weibo post were driven by curiosity. They eagerly clicked through, eager to see if this handsome guy would reveal his face…

But upon clicking, they didn’t find the handsome guy showing his face. Instead, they noticed that the friend standing next to him seemed to be quite handsome as well! Amateur handsome guys had always been a focal point of online discussions. In no time, Strawberry TV’s Spring Festival Weibo post shot to the top of the trending topics. Even those who had some free time on their hands joined in to discover the charm of these amateur handsome guys, and the number of viewers quickly multiplied.

【Is that it? Is this how they’re going to hide the handsome face behind a mask? What’s the difference from pixelation?】

【Wow, this handsome guy has such a lovely voice. It’s quite cute to see him strolling around the scenic spot early in the morning with friends!】

【Tell me, is this handsome guy in the actual footage? If he’s there, count me in for the follow!】

【I’m not celebrating the festival, but I’ll crowdfund to have this handsome guy take off his mask.】

【Hahaha, isn’t this an interview video? Why is everyone here just to see the handsome guy?】

【Show some consideration for the program, why is the caption only ‘scenic spot Tourist’? Doesn’t the handsome guy even deserve a last name?】

As the discussion continued to escalate,someone recommended and promoted this post, and soon a whole new topic emerged, toppling all previous conversations.

As the discussion surrounding #ScenicSpotHandsomeTourist# rising steadily, this trending topic finally made its way to the top forty on the late-night hot search list. More and more netizens who were enticed by the title flooded in to see the handsome guy. Finally, someone managed to uncover the slightest clue about this handsome guy.

【Hold on a second? This man, this voice, isn’t it Pei Mingzhan???】

【Damn it sister, before no one mentioned it, but now that you did, this guy does indeed looks like Film Emperor Pei Mingzhan!】

【I just looked up some comparison images, and it’s really seems like him!!】

【What!? What do you mean, “seems”? This person is Pei Mingzhan himself!】

In the entertainment industry, it’s not uncommon for both celebrities and ordinary folks to have look-alikes. In fact, not too long ago, there was even a trending topic that compiled various celebrity doppelgängers. But in this Weibo post from Strawberry TV, the scenic spot tourist not only had eyes and a voice resembling Pei Mingzhan but also bore a striking physical resemblance. This makes countless Pei fans come in late at night and directly put this micro-blog on the front row of the hot search.

【This outfit… Old Pei wore it at an event early last year.】

【Stop talking, resemblances aside, Pei Mingzhan’s voice is easy to recognize…】

【H City, the looks, the voice, and even the same outfit… isn’t this just Pei Mingzhan in the flesh!!】

【Laughing to death. So, did Film Emperor Pei come early to enjoy the scenery and ended up being interviewed by the TV station?】

【Huh?? Wait a minute, the person standing beside Film Emperor Pei…】

【Having an ordinary person look like Pei Mingzhan could be a coincidence, but two ordinary folks resembling both Pei Mingzhan and Zhao Zong at the same time? Do you think this is some kind of scenic spot cosplay?】

The person in charge of Strawberry TV’s official Weibo account stayed up too late and  went to bed after sending a post. But was woken up by a phone call from a colleague. The internal discussion team immediately exploded, and one after another @ the person in charge of the Spring Festival program. The bleary-eyed person in charge looked at the news on the Internet with a confused face. What does it mean? The person they interviewed in the morning is the Film Emperor Pei Mingzhan??

【Hahahahaha!】

【Scenic spot Tourist Pei Mingzhan and Enthusiastic Citizen Zhao Yao, it’s a perfect match.】

【Incredible, I declare this CP official.】

【Hahaha, Laughing myself to death! So, you’re saying Film Emperor Pei and Zhao Zong went to the scenic spot early to avoid fans and ended up getting caught by the TV station?】

When Brother Lao called, Pei Mingzhan and Zhao Yao had just come out of the bathroom. Pei Mingzhan looked at Zhao Yao’s slightly flushed body from the warm water and unhesitatingly draped a bathrobe over him. His voice was hoarse as he said, “You go to bed first. I’ll take this call.”

Zhao Yao was wrapped in a bathrobe and lazily said, “Okay.”

Pei Mingzhan quickly wiped away the water droplets from his body, balancing the phone on his shoulder as he spoke to Brother Lao. “What’s the matter? Why are you calling at this hour?”

“What do you mean, what’s the matter??? How come you didn’t tell me about the TV appearance with Mr. Zhao?” Brother Lao was woken up in the middle of the night by the studio’s phone call. Since Pei Mingzhan posted that Starbucks photo before the New Year, he hadn’t been sleeping well at all. He even had dreams of the two of them going viral in front of their fans. Today, he had finally enjoyed a peaceful sleep, only to be informed that Pei Mingzhan and Zhao Yao had once again been on a hot search!

“It’s not about you dating, Old Pei. It’s just that your recent frequency of going to hot search… can we tone it down a bit?” Brother Lao’s tone sounded weary. “I’m losing sleep, worrying that I’ll wake up tomorrow morning to news of the two of you getting a certificate of marriage.”

Pei Mingzhan smiled. “It was just an interview program. If I don’t acknowledge it, it’ll be fine. Besides, isn’t it normal to visit scenic spots with friends?”

Zhao Yao had been sitting on the bed, playing with his phone, but upon hearing the conversation, he recalled the morning interview and asked, “Was our trip to the scenic spot caught on camera?”

Pei Mingzhan explained, “No, it’s not about our trip. It’s the morning interview that got broadcasted, and fans recognized us.”

Brother Lao paused as he overheard Pei Mingzhan talking to someone else. “Hmm? Hmm? Who are you talking to?”

“With Zhao Yao, he’s staying over at my place today,” Pei Mingzhan replied casually, then lifted the blanket and sat down beside Zhao Yao.

Brother Lao: !!!???

“No way, Brother! Zhao Zong is at your place?” Brother Lao lowered his voice slightly, trying to keep his excitement in check. “And you’re even sharing a room??”

“Isn’t it normal to introduce someone to your family?” Pei Mingzhan said as his hand rested on Zhao Yao’s shoulder, tilted his head slightly to look at him as he scrolled through the Weibo trending topics. He continued, “Do you and your girlfriend sleep in separate rooms?”

On the other end of the phone, Brother Lao responded, “Thanks for reminding me, I don’t have a girlfriend.”

Zhao Yao hesitated for a moment and indeed saw the trending topics #ScenicSpotHandsomeTourist# and #TouristPeiMingzhan#. He said, “They aired it so quickly…”

Pei Mingzhan glanced at the trending topics’ content. “Yeah, they are putting together a compilation for this program, but during the Spring Festival, they release some special activity videos in line with the holiday.”

Zhao Yao nodded. “I see.”

On the other end of the call, Brother Lao composed himself before saying, “Strawberry TV probably didn’t anticipate that they could capitalize on your popularity to promote the program. Our studio will handle negotiations with Strawberry TV. And, you should be extra cautious about your upcoming schedule in the next few days. It’s the Chinese New Year season, and the paparazzi might even add some personal intrusion. If anything goes wrong, it could be quite troublesome.”

Zhao Yao didn’t think much of it. The morning interview had also been unexpected, but fortunately, they hadn’t been spotted by other tourists. Pei Mingzhan exchanged a few more words with Brother Lao and then hung up the phone. “Sleep? It’s already very late.”

“Yeah.”

-*

Mother Pei only found out about the incident the next morning when she checked the hot searches. She was aware that Pei Mingzhan and Zhao Yao had gone to the scenic spot the day before but hadn’t expected them to end up in the trending topics together. She called Elder Brother Pei, who was dressed in a suit and carrying a briefcase, over and said, “Take a look at this. Peipei and Xiao Yao look quite good together in the photos. Xiao Yao’s mother had many admirers when she was young, who knows how many people pursued her. Xiao Yao inherited her eyes…”

Pei Mingyan watched the interview video and saw Pei Mingzhan’s composed demeanor. “Is that so? Maybe someone intentionally wanted to look good and be on camera.”

Such scenic spot interviews had been quite common in the past. After all, Pei Mingzhan had been in the entertainment industry for so many years, and it wasn’t difficult to decline an interview or request pixelation. But Pei Mingzhan didn’t ask such demands.

“Ah, when you have a boyfriend and you end up on TV, there’s no need to make a fuss about whether it’s intentional or not.” Mother Pei liked the video and saved the Weibo post. “Xiao Yao looks great in that outfit. Peipei bought a bunch of clothes not long ago, didn’t he?? Why haven’t these two haven’t worn any of them when going out?”

After the New Year, the Pei family didn’t take too long of a break. Initially, Pei Mingzhan’s parents had planned to go on a trip, but because Pei Mingzhan brought Zhao Yao home, those plans were temporarily postponed. And Elder Brother Pei was a workaholic and hadn’t even taken a two-day break during the Spring Festival. He intended to return to work at the company.

Zhao Yao’s biological clock remained precise. When it was time, he woke up. But as soon as he tried to move, he realized he was tightly embraced by Pei Mingzhan. Pei Mingzhan was still asleep, breathing steadily. The slight warmth coming from him slightly tickled Zhao Yao’s neck.

During the Chinese New Year holiday, they hadn’t slept together for quite some time. They had a bit of fun in the bathroom last night, which was why Zhao Yao now felt somewhat lazy and not quite ready to get out of bed.

He reached out to grab the nearby phone and checked the time. It was 8:30 in the morning.

Pei Mingzhan’s embrace was just right. The position didn’t make Zhao Yao feel constrained or uncomfortable, and there were no bumps or obstacles. Instead, he felt enveloped in warmth, allowing him to lean comfortably against Pei Mingzhan. Feeling the gentle rhythm of his breathing from behind, Zhao Yao swiped his fingers and started browsing the forum.

In fact, he just casually opened it. A few days ago, when he was looking up guides, he accidentally came across quite a few strategy posts. The bathroom escapade from last night was one, but there were many he hadn’t really attempted. He still felt somewhat uncomfortable at Pei’s residence, so he planned to search for all of them and try them out with Pei Mingzhan when they returned to S City.

“What are you looking at?” Pei Mingzhan’s voice was lazy, and his breath felt like a nibbling on his ear.

Zhao Yao reached up to touch his ear and replied, “I’m looking at some guides.”

Pei Mingzhan rested his chin on Zhao Yao’s shoulder and asked, “Can I look at them with you?”

Zhao Yao’s ears tingled from the warmth of Pei Mingzhan’s breath as he spoke. “You’re pressing down on my hand. And my ears are feeling itchy.”

Instead of letting go, Pei Mingzhan replied, “Well then, I’ll scratch it for you.”

As soon as the words left his mouth, his warm hand gently pressed against Zhao Yao’s ear. He did not dare to use force and just slightly rubbed the soft ear cartilage underneath. “Is this okay?”

Zhao Yao hummed lighty. His fingers slightly swiped as he opened another strategy article.

The two of them didn’t linger in bed for too long. Around nine in the morning, they got up to freshen up. After Pei Mingzhan finished his morning routine, he went downstairs to order breakfast, while Zhao Yao changed into fresh clothes before washing up in the bathroom.

While in the bathroom, Zhao Yao gazed at the large bathtub on the side for a moment, thinking that when they returned to S City, he should have one installed. Moreover, the bedroom was fine for one person, but it seemed a bit too small for two… While washing, Zhao Yao had already contemplated getting a duplex villa closer to Pei Mingzhan’s company in S City.

As Pei Mingzhan descended the stairs, he noticed his parents sitting on the couch, staring at him. Mother Pei saw that Zhao Yao wasn’t following him. She beckoned him with her hand. When Pei Mingzhan approached, she asked, “Where’s Xiao Yao? Hasn’t he gotten up yet?”

Pei Mingzhan could tell from his mother’s expression that her thoughts were drifting in a particular direction again. He replied, “No, he just got up and is getting ready. What’s the matter?”

Mother Pei let out an “Oh” and then curiously asked, “So, how was your night last night? I heard some noises when I passed by your room.”

“…My room has such good soundproofing, and you could still hear?” Pei Mingzhan was somewhat surprised.

Surprised by his words, Mother Pei asked, “So, you really made some noise?”

Pei Mingzhan replied, “…So, was I deceived?”

Mother Pei glanced upstairs discreetly and whispered, “I’ve heard that boys need to be careful about a lot of things during those times. Don’t be too rough and end up hurting him.”

“Mom,” Pei Mingzhan replied, “We didn’t do anything. We just took a bath.”

After hearing this, Mother Pei’s initially fluctuating expression quickly settled down, and she asked again with uncertainty, “Just a bath?”

The bathtub is really big, and it’s not a problem to play with some strange things. When they took a shower yesterday, they almost cleaned their guns and fired. In the end they helped each other to vent the fire because the bathroom was not well prepared. He was worried that it would hurt Zhao Yao. But he did not know where Zhao Yao found a strange strategy. While soaking in the bath he kept on staring at the structure of the bathtub. The two people almost really can not stop the car.

“So, what else happened?” Pei Mingzhan was concerned about potential misunderstandings, and repeated, “We just really took a bath.”

Mother Pei cast a lackluster glance at Pei Mingzhan and said, “Oh.”

Pei Mingzhan: “…”

-*

At the end of the spring break, Huihua began to resume their regular work routine. As they returned to work, the company was busy with the project of “Li Meng”. Since the results of the first trailer came down, it has received a good response online. The crew also began to maintain the discussion heat for the continuous trailer output. This also made more netizens pay attention to his upcoming ancient historical drama set to air simultaneously on satellite television and online platforms.

In the past few days, Zhao Yao accompanied Pei Mingzhan on various outings in H City. Perhaps due to their recent appearance on the TV program in the scenic spot, they found themselves encountering fans more frequently. As a result, they decided to limit going out. Mother Pei had invited Zhao Yao to stay over multiple times, but to avoid inconveniencing her, the two of them didn’t spend many days together under the same roof.

With the spring break coming to an end, Pei Mingzhan had to return to work in S City, and their remaining vacation days were limited. So, they decided to make the most of their remaining time and visit the countryside where they had originally planned to go. Since it was quite far to travel back and forth, they chose to stay in a nearby B&B 1 for some relaxation.

When Zhao Yao arrived at the hotel, he received a phone call from Yao Bai, who eagerly asked about when he would be returning to S City.

This year’s Lunar New Year was quite different for Zhao Yao. He didn’t spend much time in S City. The situation at the Zhao family’s Lunar New Year celebration was also chaotic because of the Bai Chengxue incident, which caused a stir in the group. Zhao Changshuo had been busy with damage control throughout the holiday. He only sent him a New Year’s greeting. Zhao Ruihong, who was abroad, also sent a brief blessing for the New Year. As for the rest, there were numerous matters to attend to on the front of Huihua, from wrapping up “Mi Ying” to preparing for the release of “Li Meng.” There are many things to be busy with this year.

“Another week or so, how about that?” Zhao Yao pulled his suitcase inside, while on the other side, Pei Mingzhan was on the balcony, taking a  call because of work.

“It’s been so long,” said Yao Bai. “I feel that you and Uncle Wang have been gone for almost a month. I have no place to hide during this time.”

Chinese New Year is a time for relatives to play matchmakers and inquire about relationship matters. Yao Bai had been eagerly waiting to get back to work, and as the holiday season was coming to an end, he had finally managed to escape from Mrs. Yao’s clutches.

“Is that so?” Zhao Yao’s expression remained calm as he listened to Yao Bai talking about the fun events of the New Year on the other end of the phone. Small talk out of the way, they shifted to more serious matters.

Yao Bai said, “I’ve got a few good news items for you. First, ‘Mi Ying’ has been a huge success, and the team is planning a celebration for you when you return. Second, ‘Li Meng’ has seen a rise in anticipation and positive reviews. It’s set to premiere in a couple of days, and judging from the feedback on the trailer, there shouldn’t be any major issues.” He sighed with relief, “Whether it becomes a New Year’s hit, we’ll know after the first broadcast the day after tomorrow.”

During this time, Zhao Yao occasionally saw many of the company’s employees working online during the Chinese New Year in the internal group chat. “Alright, you guys decide on the celebration.”

Yao Bai suddenly remembered something else, “By the way, Ge, Chen Xi mentioned that urban drama project you talked about before. It had passed the initial evaluation at the time, but during the second evaluation after the holiday, the script was originally held back.”

The evaluation meeting took place just yesterday, and Yao Bai was present, so he heard the whole process. The project had initially passed the initial evaluation due to the highly promising story concept. But because Brother Yao mentioned the issue with the script, it underwent a rigorous review during the second evaluation, which ultimately led to the rejection of the drama.

“Because the story concept was quite outstanding, the company had people negotiating with the project during the Lunar New Year. And guess what?” Yao Bai continued, “The originally formed team is breaking apart. I heard there were internal conflicts within the team, all because of the script.”

Zhao Yao recalled the drama, “Did their team only submit it to Huihua?”

Yao Bai explained, “Not just Huihua. I heard they submitted it to several other companies as well. But, as you know, getting it approved for production is quite challenging. Even though urban dramas are relatively easy to make, each company already has a limited number of projects they can shoot each year. They mostly prioritize their in-house productions, and they are less likely to take on external projects like this. I heard they just wanted to secure an investment for production. Urban dramas typically have lower production costs, so they probably aimed to make quick money.”

Huihua has several projects in the pipeline, but there are relatively fewer urban dramas. Occasionally, they consider collaborating with external projects. If the project aligns well with their team, they might consider investing. Zhao Yao paused for a moment when he heard this and asked, “So, what’s the story behind the team’s internal conflicts?”

“This is what I heard. The team was originally formed by the director, and they added the current screenwriter later on. Then the problem arose in the script,” Yao Bai thought for a moment and continued, “Because it was a new team, and the script was an original, they encountered problems during the initial stages. The story framework was actually written by a young woman who had just graduated and gave it to the team. But storytelling and scriptwriting are two different things. The director was not satisfied with the young woman’s script, so they brought in the current writer to work on it. But the writer insisted on being credited and having a signature on it.”

Zhao Yao paused for a moment upon hearing this. No wonder the story and the script seemed like two separate things. “Signature?”

“This kind of thing is quite common in the industry, and the screenwriting circle is also quite chaotic. Established screenwriters often have a team of junior writers, and in the end, the works of these junior writers are credited to the established ones,” Yao Bai explained. “The problem here is that the young girl, even though she was fresh out of school and didn’t have much experience in the screenwriting industry, was very stubborn. A heated argument with the screenwriter erupted over ownership of the script.”

This situation is common in the industry. The young girl had potential but lacked experience. Newbie screenwriters often need connections and resources to make a name for themselves in the industry. In this case, the young girl wanted to bring her story to life, but her script wasn’t up to par. That’s when the screenwriter suggested that the project be credited under his name.

The young girl never agreed to this arrangement. Eventually, the director acted as a mediator, holding discussions with the screenwriter. They managed to write a few episodes of the script to attract investments, and the credit was given in the screenwriter’s name.

“The company was planning to abandon the project. Besides, this team, which was recently formed, had already encountered issues. Filming would likely be a bumpy road, and there might be some negative publicity along the way,” explained Yao Bai. He knew that his brother was interested in this project, so he shared the outcome of the situation with him.

Zhao Yao remained silent for a while and then said, “Since the conflict exists due to the script, if she can guarantee the originality of the story and independent creation, why not have the company’s team approach her to see if she’s willing to sell the rights to the story to Huihua.”

“Well, we can ask that…” Yao Bai replied.

There are many excellent urban drama scripts on the market, or one could say there’s no shortage of urban novel IPs. Yao Bai paused for a moment and asked, “Do you really like this story that much, Brother?”

“In my eyes, it’s a great story, and Huihua will retain her right to be credited. If we can bring it to life, it would be a good thing,” he replied.

Zhao Yao saw this matter on the surface. The underlying script conflict was essentially a communication issue within the new team. If this story could undergo script adaptation while preserving the core content, the potential benefits it could bring in terms of value were significant.

The existing script is pretty bad, but the story does have investment value.

It’s a very inspiring story.

After expressing his investment intentions to Yao Bai, Yao Bai went to find Chen Xi. Zhao Yao hung up and noticed that Pei Mingzhan was still on the phone.

He walked over to the balcony, wanting to ask about Pei Mingzhan’s schedule for the afternoon. He overheard Pei Mingzhan say, “I have some free time for promotion lately. When does the platform want me?”

Promotion? When Zhao Yao heard this keyword, he guessed that Pei Mingzhan was probably talking to his agent. But didn’t Pei Mingzhan already have other promotional activities at the moment? Why was someone looking for him now?

Pei Mingzhan saw him come out and asked in a low voice, “Is the call over?”

Zhao Yao nodded and asked, “Did you accept a new script after the Lunar New Year?”

Pei Mingzhan shook his head, spoke a few more words with Brother Lao on the other end of the call, and then hung up. He continued, “I haven’t taken a new script. It’s because your investment in ‘Mi Ying’ is about to finish broadcasting, and the collaborating platform intends to conduct a joint live broadcast.”


Been editing for the past few weeks ~ But for the upcoming weeks no more chapter release delays (੭ ˊ^ˋ)੭ ♡

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If there are any mistakes/error, feel free to comment it down below.


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  1. I saw this may mean bed & breakfast[]

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