Chapter 339: Aurora at the Tromso Midnight Sun Marathon
Fu Cheng’s story ultimately stayed within a very small range, even though his figure had moved countless people, having evoked similar emotions in many.
Those in the know were few at the end of the day.
As most people saw it, that had only been a performance. They did not know that the story was actually real, and the person in the scenes actually lacked even a chance to say ‘long time no see’.
Apple’s song went viral.
And because of the vibe of the song itself, with Apple’s performance and the atmosphere created by the music video, the earlier feeling of restlessness was completely dispelled.
The views on that post grew multifold, even quickly surpassing the number of people following her. Perhaps there were some who were listening and watching over and over again. Perhaps some had only just arrived, still not having yet had the time to click follow.
The comments below were similarly very exaggerated. Within a single day, there were over a thousand pages. If there were fifty comments on one page, the total number of comments that day had already surpassed fifty thousand. One must know that this was still the computer era, with the age of smartphones still having yet to arrive.
“His mother, this old man watched, listened, and ended up crying,” Someone said.
“This dame too,” Someone replied.
“Actually, me too. Don’t laugh. I’m nearly forty, and I thought that I’d long since experienced enough to remain unruffled by everything, but I still cried today.”
Someone replied, “What’s there to be embarrassed about? When you have experienced that sort of relationship before, have truly loved and cherished before, after you have lost it and come to meet that person again one day in the future, it will be very hard not to feel upset whether you still love them or not. Is a song just a song? It is a sort of mood, a sort of recollection, of a past that no one can ever erase from their minds. It’s very normal.”
Someone else said, “I’ve met her, five years after we broke up. Really, I only said one thing, long time no see. She said the same thing too. Still, it was pretty good. To me, that long time no see was like the sudden reduction of a life sentence. Things of the past have been accounted for.”
Actually, the song was not heart-wrenching or excruciating. Yet, the tranquility and pain that it exuded seemed able to pierce right into the core...when those listening had tales of their own.
If you had experienced it and you reminisced on it, all those scenes, all those streets, all those memories, of that former couple, of whom now only you remained.
If you had experienced heartfelt voices of concern and reminders when you got off the plane or got on a train and had once thought that she was being too naggy, yet no longer was it possible to listen to that again however much you wished to.
More and more people wrote about their own stories in the comments.
The shortest tale, “You’re gone, and I still live in this city that is full of memories. Even a tree can hurt me.”
Something which most promoted Weibo was this: “I dare not come to meet you. The only thing I can feel happy about now is that I can secretly look at your Weibo everyday, even though I dare not even follow you, have never sent a single word in reply.”
The tale with the greatest plot twist: “After listening to this song in the morning, I got off the train a stop earlier today, alighting before the entrance to your office. How I wished to run into you as soon as I got off the train, but how afraid I also was to run into you. For better or for worse, you didn’t appear in the end. I could still continue to imagine, imagining how lonely you are in these days without me...this old man doesn’t want you happy and blissful to the end of your days! No, I hope that you will grow old alone and lonely.”
Some more normal stories:
“He drives a taxi. We broke up over a year ago. I wasn’t wearing spectacles that day, and hailed a taxi on the road...I opened the door, said long time no see, and then closed it. I didn’t get on, but I remembered the days when I would stick around in his car all day, unwilling to leave. It always took so much effort before he could convince the passengers that this really was a normal taxi, not a pool taxi.”
“We were in university together. It’s been seven years. After listening to the song, I visited the university today. I visited many places, like the self-study room and the field, then went alone to the canteen by the school gates. As I was eating, hearing a voice, I abruptly raised my head. At that moment...I actually thought that you were right across from me.”
Xu Tingsheng left no comment. His tale was the hardest to describe, and could also not be described.
Actually, Xu Tingsheng had initially renamed <Long Time No See> and called it <Rebirth>.
Everyone on Tianyi’s team, Apple included, had rejected this. Looking at the lyrics, no one at all could understand-just how was this rebirth?!
To Xu Tingsheng, it represented none other than rebirth.
When he had come to Yanzhou for the first time following his rebirth, that line had resounded in his head: I’ve come here to your city...that street which is so familiar…
That was rebirth.
Following that rebirth, I know you, but you don’t know me. I’ve come here to your city...I want to meet with you...saying one thing, just one thing to you, long time no see…
I’ve come to see your past. Time has flowed twelve years in reverse, and I must say, separated by two worlds: Long time no see.
The main song, <Long Time No See> of Cen Xiyu’s album, <<Rebirth>>, began topping the charts on the various major radio stations and music websites the day right after its release on Weibo.
Xu Tingsheng actually couldn’t remember how this song had performed on the charts in his previous life. However, this time, with the song itself and that promotion on Weibo previously, <Long Time No See> had shot up to the top of several charts in a very short period of time.
The music scene and the media seemed unable to quickly acclimatize to this state of affairs.
Also, how were they supposed to judge Apple? Based on her current popularity and influence, she was indisputably first-tier. Yet, in terms of experience and foundation, in terms of products where she had merely re-sung a few of Rebirth’s songs prior to this, with only the first song of her first album released...how could they classify her as first-tier with just that?
Even as many were feeling troubled by this, more had already begun taking notice of Weibo’s influence. Whether it was any random artiste or famous figures from other fields, many began carefully working on their own Weibo.
It was just that they could not quickly hit on a correct method. Many appeared rather rigid, too fake and deliberate.
Actually, according to Xu Tingsheng’s knowledge from his previous life, it could be said that the advent of Weibo had changed the way celebrities, fans and bystanders interacted in actuality.
More interaction would appear amongst them as the distance between them was narrowed. As celebrities gained a platform that they could use to show another side of themselves to the rest of society, the ways in which they gathered fans correspondingly became increasingly varied.
A singer had become extremely popular from being good at telling anecdotes. This would have been very difficult to imagine prior to the appearance of Weibo.
There were also some people whose cats or dogs became popular before they themselves did.
Xu Tingsheng had seen these situations before, but this was not the case for everyone else. In his previous life, this Weibo culture and atmosphere had been naturally cultivated over time. In this life, however, in order to rapidly consolidate the position of Xingchen Weibo, Xu Tingsheng intended to manually guide it.
Apple was the first to reach five million followers on Weibo. In this era where one could only surf the internet with computers and not for a long time too, this was already an insane achievement.
The problem was that she was no longer updating her status.
Not only was Apple not updating her status on Weibo, she was nowhere to be found on television programs and on the radio too.
Logically speaking, she should be promoting herself during this time. What did it mean when nothing at all was being said?
Finally, when the comments inquiring into this were already upward of a thousand pages, Apple updated her Weibo.
There was a picture of her running in sports attire, an aurora illuminating the road and her body.
There were also words: Sorry, everyone. I’m currently where it’s perpetually day, participating in the Tromso Midnight Sun Marathon. It’s daylight 24 hours a day here. The aurora’s unbelievably beautiful.
This was just like someone telling an ordinary friend of theirs that they were going on a holiday.
Still, this was really too interesting. A singer releasing an album had run off to run a marathon.
“What in the world is the Tromso Midnight Sun Marathon?”
“You are my aurora.”
“The heck? What is this?”
“Apple, you can run a marathon? I don’t believe you.”
“What about the next song? What about the next song? Where’s song number two?”
Soon, Apple updated her Weibo again.
The picture was of Apple clutching a certificate while sweating profusely.
To summarise, it was totally unglamorous, with her hair and whatnot all being in a mess. Also, she might have flopped down on the ground before, for her body, hands and face were full of mud, all streaked black…
Only Apple’s most hardcore fans would say that Apple showed another form of beauty after these great physical exertions.
The words: 67th in the female category, out of not even two hundred people...I’ve really run too little because of song recordings recently. I swear that I’ll go at it again next year. If I can’t enter the top 30, I’m quitting the music scene.
The fans were instantly rendered speechless.
“Don’t scare me!!!”
“What’s this? Quitting the music scene if you can’t enter the top 30 in a marathon? ...Shouldn’t it be quitting the sports scene? What does this have to do with the music scene?”
“Same as above.”
Xu Tingsheng commented with an alternate account, “Even lying down harmlessly the music scene gets shot…”
Then, this sentence went viral. Various kinds of getting shot despite lying down harmlessly appeared on Weibo.
Then, Apple replied, “That’s true. Then, if I can’t make it into the top 30, I’m quitting the sports scene.”
“...You never were in the sports scene in the first place, okay?”
“Are you planning to participate in the 2008 Beijing Olympics?”
Following these two Weibo messages, Apple’s Weibo slowly increased in its quantity of pictures and words. These were wholly unrelated to her album and upcoming songs as it was only about her life in its entirety, come not through a filter.
Unlike that from her time in Tianle previously or that exhibited within the music video, due to her display on Weibo, Apple’s image grew to be increasingly unique, increasingly real, increasingly friendly, interesting and lovable…
Xu Tingsheng’s alternate account contributed a second popular phrase: I never thought you were such an Apple.
Yet another phrase began trending on Weibo.
Xu Tingsheng was helping Apple whilst also guiding Weibo to a more developed state.
Then, his alternate account inexplicably gained over a hundred thousand likes, looking soon to surpass his real, officially verified account...a successful young entrepreneur couldn’t compare to someone who had a way with words?
The answer was: yes. In the era of Weibo, that is.
The actual Apple, the Apple who cared not what others thought about her, the casual, liberated Cen Xiyu-her fanbase expanded at a terrifying rate. Six million followers, eight million followers, any casual Weibo message easily garnering several thousand, tens of thousands of comments.
“Not only has her song gone viral, the person herself has too!”
Without any advertisements on programmes or public notices, with just these Weibo messages alone, Apple’s <Long Time No See> solidly hogged the head of the various music charts. This was already no longer just a matter of the influence exerted by that one song itself.
As other celebrities saw that things actually worked this way, that they could gain a following like this, they successively got off their high horses as well, employing various intriguing methods...
A celebrity uploaded a video of himself performing magic and did excellently, thus gaining over ten thousand followers. Another did the same but messed up terribly, ending up laughing hysterically on the floor. But he ended up with a whopping thirty thousand followers…
Hidden experts emerged with various techniques of all kinds as pseudo celebrities soon emerged amongst the normal citizens.
Weibo rose to prominence just like that.
Xu Tingsheng’s guidance of Weibo’s culture had been a resounding success.
Opening his inbox, he saw that Apple had sent a new email:
“Dearest one, I’m in Tromso. This place is eternally bright, never needing any lights. I won’t have to be resting on your back, letting you carry me someplace bright...but I still miss you.”
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