Chapter 341: Acting together in concert
On the same day that Li Juan arrived in Tromso via plane, Zhang Ninglang who seldom made an appearance specially made a trip to the riverside residence to look for Xu Tingsheng.
“Bro Xu, have you seen those things being said about Sis Apple on the Internet? They are pretty overboard. I have been trying to help defend her, but it’s been useless,” A worried Zhang Ninglang asked.
Xu Tingsheng nodded.
“Well...aren't you going to stand up for Sis Apple and say something on her behalf? Actually, you just need to do so and all should be fine, right? While I don't know any insider news, I can guess that it was definitely you who helped her. That's nothing that can't be said, right?”
Zhang Ninglang looked at Xu Tingsheng with a rather apologetic whilst also somewhat anticipatory gaze.
Yet, Xu Tingsheng was unable to give Zhang Ninglang a reply regarding this matter.
He too was actually well aware of one thing. If he came out and admitted that it was he who had been shielding Apple and paving the way for her all along, or more directly told everyone that the two had been classmates in senior high and were a couple now, the problem would be resolved just like that.
Latching onto what rich dude? ...The guy handsome and the girl beautiful, they had fallen love in school as they had dated normally, alright? Then, they had individually developed while assisting each other. Was that wrong? Seeing his girlfriend bullied, the boyfriend who just happened to possess sufficient capabilities had stood up for her-was there a problem here?
With that, even if Apple might lose some more extreme fans, it would still be a proper one-time solution to the problem at the end of the day.
It might even become an awe-inspiring tale that others would marvel at, reciting with real relish.
However, Xu Tingsheng was most concerned with those two things that Little Xiang Ning had requested of him, that she was still waiting for him to accomplish.
He was indeed attempting to think up methods, including ‘very old-fashioned’ ones and ones that ‘appealed greatly to emotion’.
Actually, Xu Tingsheng had already hurt Xiang Ning because of Apple once before. This was back when he had chosen to take care of her who had been afflicted with severe depression.
Even though Xiang Ning had still been very ignorant back then and had never truly understood that incident, to Xu Tingsheng, since he had chosen to shoo away Little Xiang Ning and raise his hands for Apple back then, he had indeed hurt that relationship and Little Xiang Ning by extension, also having hurt the ‘Big Xiang Ning’ in his heart in the process.
Also, things were different this time. If Xu Tingsheng were to show his support for Apple this time, it would have to be in public, in an official stance.
Little Xiang Ning liked and had been paying attention to Apple all along. She was definitely excited and joyful now that Apple had re-entered the music scene. Also, she knew of Xu Tingsheng’s identity as a member of Rebirth…
Therefore, she would definitely know it. This was surely not the same as just being classmates or members of the same band. Someone being willing to go so far for another person-whoever would believe that there was nothing going on between them?
Therefore, if she was hurt this time, it would truly be a grievous wound.
Also, she was just sixteen, perhaps only just awakening to the first stirrings of love. How was he supposed to explain things to her?
Tell her that this was in order to protect Apple? When the day came in the future when she was really, openly by Xu Tingsheng’s side, wouldn’t that mean that in the gossip articles or internet rumours, she was to be described as the substitute for a female celebrity or a third party who had swooped in and stolen him away?
Anyway, going by Big Xiang Ning’s personality from his previous life, she would never be able to tolerate this, definitely not…
She was not an angel whose brain circuits were all fried or some foolish saintess one might see in television dramas. Xiang Ning was just a normal girl who did not stand on ceremony at all in being petty when she had to...also, she had many other faults and deficiencies too.
It was because of this that she was truly lovable. Xu Tingsheng would not have fallen in love with a saintess.
Even if Little Xiang Ning was so understanding in this life that Xu Tingsheng didn’t recognise her, being able to empathise with even this...the problem lay with Mr and Mrs Xiang too. They were more or less able to understand Xu Tingsheng’s feelings towards their daughter, yet were able to comprehend this.
Their wariness of Xu Tingsheng had already been very high in the first place. To do something like this now?
Dating a celebrity whilst still having his eyes on their precious daughter?
In that case...any good impression that might still have remained would probably all fly away.
The sole conclusion they might come to was that rich people were all morally questionable indeed…
And what about in the future? Hey, what future might remain...really, perish the thought.
Xu Tingsheng sought a method which could satisfy both sides. He hesitated all the way till nighttime.
That night, the company running Weibo, Xingchen Technologies, released an official Weibo announcement.
“Xingchen Technologies is honoured to be able to work together with Tianyi Media and Miss Cen Xiyu. At the same time, we are extremely grateful towards Miss Cen Xiyu for her contributions in promoting Weibo.”
“Regarding those many speculations, we can reveal one thing. Boss Xu and Miss Cen were indeed classmates in senior high school. Therefore, our cooperation this time is very normal. Still, that’s all there is to it.”
Far away in Tromso, Li Juan immediately called Apple over after seeing this post on Weibo.
“That’s all there is to it? ...What does he mean by that? Clarifying their innocence? Or does it mean that other people are free to guess whatever they want? Why is he doing this?”
Li Juan rattled off a whole list of questions. Apple said nothing. She basically understood Xu Tingsheng’s actions and why he had done so.
It was pretty cruel. At least, from what she remembered, Xu Tingsheng had never been so ruthless towards her before.
“You’re afraid of hurting her this time, aren’t you? Right...you already gave her up once because of me. The me of right now should learn to face things myself. There’s no reason for you to throw everything away again.”
Apple lay on her bed, drawing her curtains, blocking off the daylight and aurora.
“Apple?” Li Juan asked carefully.
“He still helped me out of a portion of the encirclement, at least,” Apple said, “Sis, I feel like sleeping. Help me to book the air tickets. Let’s return to the country tomorrow, the two of us.”
Apple was still very quiet when boarding the plane the next day. The weather wasn’t good and there was no scenery above the clouds. She simply looked at the dense fog outside the window throughout the entire journey, not uttering a sound.
Li Juan had originally wanted to instruct her on what to say to the media after returning to China. On seeing this, however, she could only hold herself back, remaining silent throughout.
While in the hotel, waiting to change flights, Apple suddenly told Li Juan, “Sis, tell the company to change the song that will be uploaded tomorrow. Replace <Want To Sing You My Song>.”
Li Juan asked, “Why?”
Apple smiled rather piteously, “<Want To Sing You My Song> is sung by me and him together. Although he is wearing a mask and his figure is blurry...that person who knows him very well will probably still be able to recognise him.”
The final part of that sentence was said very softly, so softly that only she herself could hear it.
Actually, Little Xiang Ning would not mind Xu Tingsheng singing a duet with Apple. After all, she knew about Xu Tingsheng’s hidden identity as a member of Rebirth. If it was just singing together in a duet as fellow members of the band, she might even feel happy as a result.
Still, Apple was not aware of this. Not knowing anything about Xiang Ning at all, never having investigated this as well, she believed the problem to be more severe than it really was.
“Afraid that he’ll be swept into this? And so?” Li Juan asked.
“I’ll act together in concert,” Apple replied.
“Well, what song instead then?”
Now, Apple puffed up her cheeks, suddenly smiling, “I’ll let you have your way this time. Still, I’ve got to at least vent my mood, right? Listen to the song, and feel guilty to death.”
The next day, as the plane was in the midst of flying eastward.
The second song <Performer> of Cen Xiyu’s album <<Rebirth>> simultaneously aired on various major television and radio stations in China.
“I who should act together in concert with you pretend to see nothing
When forcing someone who loves you the most to take to the stage
But you once loved me so much why must I act out these scenes
When I must act together in concert I perform with all my might
It’s because I love you that I choose to perform, and fulfill you
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