Under the tree shade, the young couple gradually closed the gap between them and their lips were about to meet.
Suddenly, they were interrupted by a phone call.
The girl got pulled back to reality instantly. She pushed her spectacles’ frame up and whipped out her mobile phone. When she saw the incoming caller alert, she took a glance at the boy before picking up the call.
"Yuanyuan, Yuanyuan, Yuanyuan, I know you are on a date now but I really can't wait to share two pieces of news with you!" Before Yuanyuan could even say anything, the person on the other end of the line shot her mouth off like a machine gun.
"I can't! The official webpage for 'Empress' just released their teaser today. Oh gosh, my Jiaojiao is so cool and so pretty! Ahhhhh, I want to lick my screen, ngggggg, I am going to drop dead. The drama is scheduled for broadcast in October, but it's only the 5th of July!!! I can’t wait for another three months! I’m going to die!"
"And the other piece of news?"
"Jiaojiao updated her new work status. She uploaded a still from another drama. Oh! She is playing the female lead in ‘Double-Faced Lovers’. Do you know who the male lead is? Come on, make a guess, you surely wouldn't be able to guess it, he has never acted in a drama before. Alright, I will give you a hint, he is a singer, he…"
"He has great ties with Gu Zhou, his popularity… Eh, why are you able to guess it so soon?"
Zheng Yuan looked at the information on her phone screen. Instead of listening to the incessant chatter on the call, she might as well search it up on the net. There, one click away.
"Yuanyuan, how did you manage to guess it? I haven't even finished what I was going to say."
"Alright, I'm hanging up, I will take a look myself," Zheng Yuan then hung up the call without saying another word. She started swiping her phone screen and browsed the Internet to find out the information that she wanted.
Jiaojiao had two new status updates on her Weibo. The first one was where she shared the teaser uploaded to the official Weibo account of the ‘Empress’ production team. The other one, she uploaded publicity stills of 'Double-Faced Lovers' and remarked that the drama was in the midst of filming and will be broadcasted in another six months.
On one of the publicity stills, the background was half black and half white. With their hands interlocked, the two Jiaojiao stood facing each other as though they were looking into a mirror. On the black background, Jiaojiao wore a white long dress, had simple makeup and a smile. On the white background, Jiaojiao wore a black suit, had stylish makeup and an icy expression.
Such a stark contrast was extremely eye-catching.
On the second still, Jiaojiao was seated behind an office table in a suit, while a young man with a rather cynical smile sat on the table, and had his hand cupping Jiaojiao's chin. Yet, Jiaojiao gave him a piercing death glare.
On the third still, Jiaojiao was dressed in a plain t-shirt and denim jeans and painting. She turned to look at the man beside her with a splendid smile while the young man looked at her with a tender gaze and held a bouquet of roses behind him.
Three publicity stills were all it took to attract people to watch this drama.
Chatter burst forth in the comments section. Everyone was triggered as though they were a sub-account of Liu Lu's and was very excited.
As for the other update, Zheng Yuan disregarded the data usage and clicked to play the three-minute teaser.
The teaser started with the scene based in a gourd-shaped valley. A dozen horses stood abreast, and their riders stared solemnly ahead. The camera zoomed in to the person on horseback standing alone at the forefront of the army. She wore a flowing red cape, her armour shone brightly and had an androgynous appearance.
"Capture Wu Qinghe alive!" A strong cry roared out from the entrance of the valley. At the same time, it was accompanied by the thunderous footsteps of thousands and millions of men and horses.
The scene changed. The valley was packed with soldiers, their swords and bows pointed towards the dozen people on horseback.
The scene changed again. Under the flying flag with the character ‘Wu’ printed on it, the person stared at the enemies before her with an intense gaze and hollered, "Release the arrows!"
As the rain of arrows fell from above, it was accompanied by swishing sounds.
The scene changed again. The valley was laid with corpses. The original group of a dozen men had all fallen. The only one left standing was the general in silver armour who stood at the forefront with one knee on the ground. With a halberd in hand and the flag in the other, she supported her body up. The arrow tails on her back were unmistakable.
The next second, the scene changed again. The whole screen was covered in red and zoomed out to become the long tail of a dress.
The camera slowly shifted as a woman in phoenix coronet and robes of rank ascended the steps. A handsome man stood in the middle of the steps. He was dressed in red as well. At this moment, he stretched out a hand towards the woman as the two held hands and continued their way up until they reached the top of the steps and turned around together to face the court ministers, who were waiting at the foot of the platform to pay their respects.
"Reporting—" Suddenly, a shout came quickly from a distance.
A soldier dashed in, knelt at the foot of the platform and shouted, "Urgent news from 800 miles away. Your Majesty, we achieved a great victory at Cao Guan!"
"Hahaha, a double blessing indeed," the charming emperor let out a laugh.
The soldier had a brief look of hesitation and just when everyone was smiling, he shouted, "Reporting to Your Majesty, General Wu has fallen."
The camera turned onto the two on the platform, who were of the noblest of ranks. Both had a complex expression.
"She…," Mu Jinyu, who had attained the rank of Empress, closed her eyes.
Then, a sequence of frames flashed past like a flashback compilation of events from the past. She was being slapped by Imperial Consort Wu. She was being whipped by Imperial Consort Wu but His Majesty blocked the latter's whip. Also, there were scenes where they faced off each other after she had risen the ranks. Finally, she avenged herself and slapped the other party when the latter was in the Cold Palace.
"Arrange an elaborate funeral for Imperial Consort Wu," the emperor ordered.
The empress opened her eyes with a determined look.
Her internal dialogue sounded, "I sit upon the Empress' throne today, I will also be the only one to accompany His Majesty in the Imperial Mausoleum in the future!"
The screen went dark.
After watching the teaser, Zheng Yuan released the breath that she had been holding. Though the teaser had lasted only a mere three minutes, she felt extremely stirred after watching it.
At this moment, Zheng Yuan's emotions were like what Liu Lu described - tortured, and couldn't wait to binge-watch the drama immediately. At the thought that the drama wouldn’t be broadcasted for another three months, she felt as though she was experiencing cold turkey.
"Are you done? It looks interesting," a voice said into her ear all of a sudden.
Er… Zheng Yuan was suddenly reminded that she was on a date with her senior from school. The atmosphere was perfect just now and they had almost shared a kiss before being interrupted by Liu Lu's call.
"Senior, I'm so sorry," Zheng Yuan lifted a hand to push her spectacles' frame up to hide her embarrassment.
"I can tell that Xu Jiaojiao is your true love now," Zheng Yuan's senior lifted a hand to pat her head and said helplessly.
Zheng Yuan's cheeks turned red as she feigned calmness and asked, "Don't you like Er Jiao?"
"She's not my type. But since you like her, okay, from now on, I am her fan too."
Zheng Yuan's face turned a shade redder.
Zheng Yuan's senior's eyes shone brightly when he realised the rare opportunity before him. He cupped Zheng Yuan cheeks and his lips landed on hers.
In a particular building, everyone was busy in an office that was leased as a filming site.
Sheng Jiaoyang was seated behind the office table and could only stare helplessly at Ye Fan, who kept erupting into laughter during the shoot.
"Can you just stop laughing?"
"I can't," Ye Fan grinned.
"Do you know how much time you have wasted? Can you please be more professional?" Sheng Jiaoyang was so close to flipping the table.
Ye Fan showed off a few of his stylish b-boy moves and said in a manner that totally deserved a beating, "Acting is not my speciality in the first place, my speciality is in singing and dancing."
Sheng Jiaoyang narrowed her eyes and her ruby lips rose into a faint smile. She leaned back against her chair and wasn't anxious anymore. "Show us your speciality then."
"I have to perform just because you ask me to? I am not your subordinate, unless—" Ye Fan deliberately dragged on his last word and continued, "You beg me!"
Sheng Jiaoyang suddenly stood up, went past the office table and walked towards Ye Fan.
"What do you want?" She’s not going to beat me for real, right? Ye Fan watched Sheng Jiaoyang approach him with a domineering aura and took a step back in fright. It happened that there was a chair right behind him and he fell down from the inertia and landed on the chair.
Sheng Jiaoyang placed her hands on the armrests on each side of the chair and Ye Fan was trapped between her and the chair.
"Wah~!" someone exclaimed.
Ye Zi was standing beside Zeng Huan and was startled by the scene before her. She said in a daze, "Shouldn't it be the other way round?" Shouldn't the guy be the one trapping the woman between him and a wall or something?
"You must get used to the fact that our Jiaojiao is that overbearing," Zeng Huan said with a laugh.
Ye Fan was in a daze. Did I just get teased by a woman?
"Can you act properly?" Sheng Jiaoyang stared at Ye Fan.
Ye Fan lifted his chin and to protect his dignity as a man, he spat out one word, "No."
Sheng Jiaoyang stared at Ye Fan for a good five seconds before a smile appeared on her face. In a gentle tone, she said, "If you can't act properly, I will sing for you until you can act well enough."
Reminded of her demonic tune, a shiver went down Ye Fan's spine. He tried to hold it in for a brief moment before he relented, "You win."
Sheng Jiaoyang then stood upright and clapped her hands together. "Alright, get to work."
Ye Fan made a wry face to Sheng Jiaoyang's back and then a thought came to his mind. There seem to be many scenes where the male lead teases the female lead. He cocked an eyebrow and smiled devilishly.
The overall feel of 'Double-Faced Lovers' was relaxing and filled with positive energy. There wasn't any evil supporting female character within. There might be some characters who had conflicts with the female lead which led the audience into the feeling that they were the villains, but there weren't any characters who were the embodiment of evil itself. Even the second female lead was an adorable character.
Judging from the drama title, the female lead had two faces. And the word ‘lovers’ meant that the male lead was also a character with two faces.
The female lead, Zhou Yilin, was the icy goddess in everyone's eyes. Her work ability was outstanding and had a cold personality. She was a serene and beautiful woman but loved to go to a place where no one knew her. There, she could dress casually, laugh or cry unscrupulously, and do whatever she felt like doing.
Meanwhile, it was the opposite for the male lead, Ouyang Yi. He deliberately put on a playboy front in public to agitate his father, who abandoned his mother for the mistress. Ouyang Yi was the only child his father ever had and hence his father had always been wanting to groom him into the best successor. In actuality, Ouyang Yi was a person who was distant and aloof. Moreover, his heart was filled with negativity and felt that everyone around him were hypocrites.
And, as fate would have it, these two people with totally different personalities were bound to cross each other's path.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Cosy | Editor: Grace | TLC: Grace