Morbid Attachment

Chapter 3

Ji Wang went to the company the next day. At the bottom floor of the office, someone unexpectedly chased Ji Wang asking for signatures and photographs. This made Ji Wang reluctantly feel a bit popular.

When he found Hong-jie, she was busy on the phone. After seeing Ji Wang, she directly handed him some documents.

Ji Wang flipped through them and hastily scanned the contents. Even though it was a new variety show, the details were virtually the same. The main goal was still to depend on the chemistry between guests.

If you had a catchphrase and a smile, the more you opened up, the more the audience would like you. Ji Wang looked more carefully at the section detailing his pay, then finally signed his name.

The program was 10 episodes in total. If ratings were high, they would add a second season.

By the time he finished signing, Hong-jie had hung up the phone and pleasantly said, “I also accepted a commercial for you, although you aren’t the main role.”

Ji Wang directly asked, “How much is the pay?”

Hong-jie gave him an annoyed look. “Every day it’s money, money, money, did you fall in the pit of money?”

Ji Wang wryly smiled. “Sister, I still have to pay back my home loan. I can’t even afford a car and the company won’t arrange one for me.”

Hong-jie callously replied, “Company cars are reserved for artists with good career trajectory. You’re leisurely outside playing and still want to use a company car. What a waste of resources.”

Ji Wang rubbed his nose. “Just now someone downstairs recognized me. In the future, won’t I be unable to ride the subway?”

Hong-jie rolled her eyes. “Ride a cab and the company will reimburse you.”

Ji Wang’s parents died young. Truthfully, he made enough to feed his family of one, but a few years ago he bought a house. Although the house was old, small, and rundown, the neighborhood was expensive and he was weighed down by the home loan.

Adding that he wasn’t popular and didn’t receive many dramas, he lived his days with a tight wallet.

After Ji Wang signed the contract, Hong-jie handed another contract to him. “There’s also this MV1 that requires a supporting actor that can sword-dance. The filming cycle is short and the pay is good so I accepted the role for you.”

Ji Wang’s eyes curved up. “Thank you, Hong-jie.” Saying this, he happily flipped to the last page and dropped his signature.

Hong-jie almost couldn’t handle his smile. She'd represented many artists and already had a certain immunity to attractiveness, but when confronted with Ji Wang, she was still occasionally shocked.

Fortunately, Hong-jie was a beta. She couldn’t smell Ji Wang’s pheromones and was able to make herself at peace.

At this time, another person walked into the office. It was another alpha actor who entered the company at the same time as Ji Wang. Likely because he compared himself to Ji Wang, and adding the fact that their secondary genders repelled each other, the other man never showed Ji Wang any good will.

Ji Wang didn’t enjoy going against another person and took the initiative to yield, planning to leave first. Hong-jie casually said to him, “Go find Xiao Xu2, I told him to drive you to the studio.”

“We’re shooting today?” Ji Wang was a little amazed, he hadn’t even looked at the script yet.

Hong-jie asked the other alpha to take a seat and waved her hand at Ji Wang. “You’ll be fine, I’ve already transferred the money to your bank account.”

Anyways, none of the artists under Hong-jie’s hands could remain unconvinced by her. She had a talent for making people feel warm inside. Ji Wang had no doubts and left the office. As he passed the other alpha, he heard the other snort, looking unconvinced. Ji Wang paid him no attention.

In the office next door, Xiao Xu had already prepared everything and handed the script over to Ji Wang. Ji Wang flipped it open to the first page and saw the name of the director and lead in large letters.

Director Zhou Lie was very famous and had shot MVs for many music emperors and empresses. Ji Wang stared at the name of the lead, completely unable to move. Xiao Xu put his bag on his back and came over to tug on Ji Wang.

Ji Wang didn’t move. Xiao Xu stared blankly at Ji Wang for a moment. Ji Wang’s expression looked like he had seen something extremely shocking.

In Xiao Xu’s impression, Ji Wang was a calm and collected person to the point of being a little cold. He lacked the usual strong arrogance of an alpha and Xiao Xu rarely saw him affected by other things.

In the last drama, Xiao Xu was Ji Wang’s assistant. The only time he saw Ji Wang reveal this type of expression was in that school drama when Xia Chengsong, played by Ji Wang, bumped into the heroine and the protagonist kissing.

Xiao Xu softly asked, “Wang-ge, don’t you want to leave? We may be late.”

Ji Wang closed the script. “I can’t pick this up.”

Xiao Xu was stunned by these words. “We can’t, Ge, we’ll have to pay the contract penalty.”

Ji Wang wanted to grit his teeth and say he’d pay, but even though the loss of money was small, the loss of trust would be large. It would bring trouble to the company. This was no longer a matter that affected him alone.

He didn’t have the qualifications to be willful. Having worked hard out in society for so long, Ji Wang no longer had the impulsive red-bloodedness of a youth.

Even after they entered the car, Xiao Xu still worried about Ji Wang through the rearview mirror. He was likely concerned that Ji Wang’s performance would be abnormal and he would be scolded together as his assistant.

Ji Wang looked in the rearview and smiled at Xiao Xu, reluctantly saying, “Don’t panic, I’m more worried about losing money than you are.”

Xiao Xu let out a sigh of relief. Holding the steering wheel, he joked, “Ge, have you eaten yet? How about you eat a little before going to the shoot?”

Ji Wang didn’t have the slightest appetite. He shook his head and continued to look at the script. His eyes once more fell on the list of actors. Qi Boyan, these three words, persistently appeared before him yet again.

Like they were destined in the dark, first he saw Qi Boyan’s concert recording at the bar, then he received the bottle of cologne, and next he would see the man himself.

It was as if his life was written by a screenwriter into a third-rate dog-blood drama.

Turning the page to the content he was about to act, he suddenly breathed a sigh of relief. He would play a masked assassin who fell in love at first sight with the MV’s female lead.

The total required acting content was not very much. After all, it was a supporting role. The highlight was still Qi Boyan.

The MV’s plot was very simple. In the previous life before rebirth, Qi Boyan was a general who fell in love with the daughter of a criminal. The assassin Ji Wang played was a cannon fodder sent by the enemy to assassinate the female lead.

The role’s purpose was to add fire to the male and female lead’s feelings. Because of love and hatred, the female lead was killed, leading to the male and female lead only being able to meet in the modern day.

Ji Wang closed the script. He didn’t know whether Qi Boyan’s tastes had changed, or whether today’s fans all enjoyed this genre. Qi Boyan was still a rebellious rock star back when he debuted. Who could have known that these days he would shoot this type of MV.

After half an hour, the car stopped outside of the production. Ji Wang was ushered into the cast dressing room. When the makeup artist saw Ji Wang, their eyes shined for a moment. After applying some simple makeup to Ji Wang, they let him change clothes.

Ji Wang’s character was masked. Having a costume that didn’t reveal his face made him feel far more at ease.

Soon, Ji Wang realized he had worried too much. Even if he acted in Qi Boyan’s MV, it didn’t mean he could actually see Qi Boyan.

His part only required him to film a few scenes at the end with the female lead. Most of his scenes were martial art scenes by himself. With the assistant director completing the shot, Qi Boyan as the protagonist recorded his program in a different location.

Ji Wang hung from a wire wearing heavy, dark colored leather clothing. Over and over he flew around the forest, the branches making small cuts to his limbs.

This type of situation almost couldn’t be considered an injury to Ji Wang, who was familiar with acting. After the assistant director yelled cut, Xiao Xu ran over and handed him a drink and a small electric fan. “Ge, you must be overheated, drink some water.”

Ji Wang dully shook his head. He glanced around and didn’t see Qi Boyan. It appeared his worries were somewhat ridiculous.

The assistant director called Ji Wang over. He was very satisfied with Ji Wang’s performance and told him to go rest until they called him back.

Ji Wang went down and waited by the side.

He didn’t have a nanny car and could only rest in the dressing room. He once again flipped open the script. Some photos were inserted into the script - they were Qi Boyan’s stage makeup photos.

In the photo Qi Boyan’s long hair was tied up. He wore a crimson cloak and the setting sun fell on half of his body. Even the sunlight seemed to favor him a bit. He looked solemn and powerful. His eyes looked into the lens of the camera and passed straight into the heart of the person looking at the photo.

Ji Wang’s eyes paused on the photograph for a few seconds before quickly flitting away.

Even though for him acting was just a means of making enough to eat, Ji Wang was the type who took his work seriously. Directors who had used him all said he wasn’t bad. Occasionally they even called Ji Wang to their own crew to assist and play a few unclaimed supporting roles.

Ji Wang refused no one which infuriated Hong-jie. Every time, Ji Wang's words urged Hong-jie to not find trouble with money.

Suddenly the assistant director opened the dressing room curtain. “Ji laoshi, you’re up soon, get ready.”

Ji Wang quickly fixed up his makeup and pulled on the mask before stepping out of the dressing room to the filming location.

To be honest, Ji Wang was already a little dazed because of the heat, so much so that he didn’t notice the faint restlessness around him which was much stronger than when shooting earlier.

The director behind the monitor had changed.

The lead actress who shouldn’t have appeared in this scene was applying makeup.

As the gentle sound of horse hooves approached from not far away, Ji Wang still silently read through the script.

When the decorative buckle on his belt was poked by something Ji Wang confusedly turned around. The shadow of a man and a horse loftily enveloped his body.

As if from a shot in a drama - in fact not more dignified than a drama - came a delicate face that one couldn’t find fault with and careless and provocative eyes. Riding a horse, the man used the spear in his hand to poke the belt around Ji Wang's waist and condescendingly gazed at him.

Ji Wang felt his expression should have been ridiculous. Luckily, he hadn’t taken his mask off even at the hottest time.

Qi Boyan’s spear pressed into the leather belt around Ji Wang’s waist, lightly pushing down. “You’re in the way.”

  1. MV = music video
  2. "Xiao" as in "little Xu", used as a term of affectionate and is not part of his formal name
  3. "Ge" means "older brother"

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