The storm was slow to come, but after it brewed for a long time, it carried the viciousness of a deadly hostility, approaching without a sound and striving for a fatal blow.
Xiao Bo’s bar had just opened, and Shen Yun was pressed to drink until he was slightly drunk, cuddling on the sofa with Xiao Bo to smoke.
The two of them puffed out clouds of smoke, comfortably squinting and humming.
Ding Ning was still sober; sitting down next to them, he took out his mobile phone to look through Weibo, and suddenly his face changed.
One of the hot searches was “Zhou Lan’s homosexuality exposed.”
Zhou Lan was a social celebrity, handsome and wealthy, living a mysterious life, a standard diamond bachelor…
Any one of his qualities, if pulled out at random, would easily make him the focus of the public’s attention.
There were quite a few stupid fans yelling “husband, husband” at any of his pictures.
The only good thing was that he was not from the entertainment industry and was cold and low-key, so his private life rarely fell into the eyes of the public.
Still, with this hot physique, it was easy to cause a furore.
Even the employees of Zhouquan said that with their boss as a living signboard, their company saved a large sum of money on advertising.
The reason why this living signboard was on the hot search today was not glamorous.
Ding Ning clicked on the Weibo post that had tens of thousands of views. There were a few fuzzy pictures below, and you could see that the time of taking pictures was at night.
In the photos, Zhou Lan was pressing his chest against the back of a person, and judging from the posture, that should be a young man.
The man in Zhou Lan’s arms, snuggling tightly, was carrying eggs and noodles, as if he was living at home.
In one of the pictures, Zhou Lan tenderly lowered his head and kissed the top of the other’s head, looking both doting and affectionate.
It was just like a couple of loving young husband and wife.
Although most of the pictures were from the back, and the only two frontal shots were quite blurry, those familiar with Shen Yun could still recognise him extremely easily.
Ding Ning originally just went to eat melons (watch gossip), but he didn’t expect to eat them on his young teacher’s head in the end.
His eyes snapped open wide, looking incredulously at Shen Yun.
Shen Yun was keenly aware of his gaze and looked over with a questioning look, “What’s wrong?”
Ding Ning handed the mobile phone to Shen Yun, and his tone was a bit off, “What’s this?”
Shen Yun took it and only looked at it for a few moments before his brows furrowed.
Xiao Bo also got up from the sofa and leaned on Shen Yun’s shoulder to watch with him.
“Isn’t this you?” Xiao Bo raised an eyebrow.
Shen Yun didn’t answer and scrolled through the comments below.
One comment was at the top, “Haha, I know this person, he’s a designer. Not much strength, relying on ass-selling to get to the top. He was forced into a large domestic design studio by Zhou Lan. In order to get the project, the design studio had to swallow it. Can’t be even taught hand in hand, but relying on the background of the big name, who can say anything? I’m really disappointed in Zhou Lan, how can he look at such goods?”
The following rows were full of curses against Shen Yun. Shen Yun roughly skimmed through, and then exited Weibo, returning the phone to Ding Ning.
Ding Ning’s face turned white with anger: “Shen Yun, what’s going on? Can’t you explain?”
Xiao Bo glared at him: “Why should he explain something to you?”
Ding Ning clicked on Weibo again and pointed to the comments: “Look at how they are scolding you! If you can bear it, I can’t bear it.”
Shen Yun raised his eyes and looked at him quietly: “What if it’s true?”
Ding Ning opened his mouth, “How can it be? Every project you have, how you do it, every detail of it, I have followed step by step. How can it be?”
Shen Yun still looked at him like that, calmly. Ding Ning was stunned for a moment. With a flash in his brain, he stuttered, “You mean… you mean, you and President Zhou, you’re really selling… “
He violently covered his mouth, his face blue and white.
Shen Yun looked at him and smiled instead, nodding, “Not exactly selling, but me and him, it is that kind of relationship.”
Ding Ning recalled the only few times he had met with Zhou Lan, and Zhou Lan’s attitude towards Shen Yun.
In fact, there had been traces for a long time, and he only had himself to blame for being too stupid to see anything.
He clenched his teeth, “Shen Yun, you really fucking disappoint me!”
Shen Yun lowered his eyes, “So, you can choose again now.”
Ding Ning froze. He had previously told Shen Yun that he would follow wherever Shen Yun went.
What was the meaning of Shen Yun bringing it up now after having agreed to it a long time ago?
He felt insulted, “What do you mean? Am I that kind of person?”
Shen Yun narrowed his eyes, “Our path in the future may not be very easy. You may not be able to have a good future if you follow me.”
Ding Ning got up violently, “I just want to follow you, Shen Yun, don’t you think you can get rid of me! Even if the path is not smooth, I still want to learn those skills of yours before I get rid of you.”
Xiao Bo had seen enough of the drama: “Alright, alright, is there such a thing as yelling at your teacher?”
Ding Ning glared at him, “You’re not a good thing either.”
Xiao Bo opened his mouth innocently and fell into Shen Yun’s arms, rubbing his heart, “Your apprentice broke my heart, quickly rub it for me.”
Ding Ning looked at Shen Yun sitting there motionless like a mountain, allowing Xiao Bo to act coquettish with him, and couldn’t help but stand up in anger: “I’m going to find Li Huan.”
Shen Yun narrowed his eyes and smiled, “What are you looking for Li Huan for? It’s not like he slept with me.”
Ding Ning’s face instantly turned red, “Shen Yun, you’re shameless!”
He huffed and puffed as he turned around and walked out the door. Shen Yun looked at his back and smiled, “I really envy him.”
Pampered by his parents, pampered by his teacher, pampered by Li Huan, even when he was scolded by a customer, he had a place to take it out.
Even if he couldn’t make any great achievements in his career, so what?
In life, who knows what is most important? Why bother to go on a wild goose chase?
Xiao Bo still rested on Shen Yun’s lap, smoking: “What’s the situation between you and Zhou Lan in the end?”
Shen Yun didn’t say anything. Xiao Bo rolled over and climbed up, pulling down his collar. He was wearing a black shirt, contrasting with his snow-white skin. His long slender eyes glittered: “What do you think if I say, don’t mix with them anymore, don’t do that design shit, let’s just live together, you and I, for a lifetime? A lifetime isn’t that long anyway.”
Shen Yun helplessly rubbed his forehead, “Please, don’t add to the chaos.”
Xiao Bo played with the buttons on his shirt, watched him smoking drearily, and disliked his cheap cigarettes once again.
Shen Yun wore the same black shirt as Xiao Bo, and the two sat together, both with white skin and red lips, looking like a pair of twins.
The shirt was given by Xiao Bo, and Shen Yun casually put it on before going out. He didn’t expect them to wear the same style, making Ding Ning uncomfortable for a while.
In Ding Ning’s eyes, Shen Yun was the bright moon that was high in the sky, but he fell into the quagmire in an instant, and Ding Ning was distressed and angry.
At about this moment, he was going to face Li Huan in anger.
Shen Yun thought to himself, he really committed a sin. Senior helped him so much, but he brought such a child on him.
“Shen Yun, what is that Zhou Lan?” Xiao Bo asked.
Shen Yun thought for a moment, “A fickle person.”
“Other than that?”
“Other than that? A capable person.”
“Capable in bed?” Xiao Bo snorted.
Shen Yun looked down and puffed as much white smoke as he could into his smiling face.
“Do you like him?”
Shen Yun rubbed Xiao Bo’s hair, “It’s just playing, what’s there to like or not.”
Zhou Lan’s public relations came in a timely manner. It was not Zhouquan that issued a public relations statement, but Zhou Lan himself went into battle.
On the second day of the hot search on Weibo, there happened to be a land auction.
Zhou Lan and Fang Qin arrived together.
As soon as they got out of the car, they were surrounded by reporters.
The most direct question was what the relationship between Zhou Lan and the other man in the photos was.
Zhou Lan hugged Fang Qin’s shoulders on the spot and said with a smile: “Everyone over-interpreted it. We’re just friends. That day I drank too much and had a stomach ache. The other party helped me walk in that position. You see Fang Qin, we grew up together, slept together I don’t know how many times, why doesn’t anyone spread rumours about us?”
Fang Qin was inexplicably dragged into this to block the gun and hurriedly helped his childhood friend out of trouble: “No, we are going to become national CP (pairing), and the advertising department staff of Zhouquan and Tianqin will lose their jobs.”
The two of them echoed each other’s words, making the reporters laugh.
But there were also those who didn’t buy it, “But President Zhou clearly kissed the other person. Can you be more sincere?”
Zhou Lan shrugged and said, “As you know, Zhouquan makes investments in film and television every year, and there’s a term for filming called borrowing (a method to modify the actual shooting effect by using the shooting angle), so I think we’ve all heard of it.”
His explanation was obviously unconvincing, but there was no way to refute it.
Another reporter asked, “Then can you explain the revelations on the internet?”
Zhou Lan snorted, “Do I, Zhou Lan, still have to go through so much trouble to promote people? Does anyone believe such fake materials?”
The reporters still wanted to ask questions, but Zhou Lan waved his hand, “We’ll go in first, my assistant will invite you to have coffee later. I hope you’ll be merciful, don’t be misled by a few photos.”
It didn’t matter how he himself was gossiped about but Shen Yun…
On the surface this storm seemed to have passed, but the undercurrents and whirlpools under the calm waters were far from over.
This wave of undercurrents first manifested itself in the attitude of Moxi’s employees towards Shen Yun.
Although they had seen with their own eyes how hard Shen Yun worked on the project…
Although they had seen with their own eyes how much preliminary work that they thought unnecessary Shen Yun had done in order to create a satisfactory design…
Although they had heard Shen Yun’s dialogues with Ding Ning, and many commendable views and insights Shen Yun had about the industry…
Although they had seen the all-nighters he had pulled up while rushing the project, and his bloodshot eyes in the morning…
Although they had seen him tear down everything and start all over, not afraid of trouble, never perfunctory, serious…
None of them wanted to believe what they saw.
They preferred to believe the words on the internet, the words that gave them inner comfort.
“See, I told you he was involved with that President Zhou, right?”
“Otherwise, how could he become the main designer of Lanqiao?”
“Hey, didn’t you guys read what the informed people on the internet said? All those designs of Shen Yun’s were bought by Zhou Lan from other people to put his name on them!”
Shen Yun sat in the lounge as usual, in the same fixed position, with coffee in his hand, looking down at the magazine on his lap.
This position was particularly good, with sunlight coming in on winter days and a cool breeze blowing in on summer days.
He flicked off the ash of his cigarette, his back still straight.
Those unpleasant words, those mocking glances, those malicious slurs seemed to have nothing to do with him.
On the contrary, it was Ding Ning who had a fight with a designer’s assistant, and one of his eyes was swollen.
He wanted to drag Shen Yun up and beat him up as well.
But this time, even Li Huan didn’t pamper him, and only said that it was Shen Yun’s personal matter, and told him to stay out of it.
Xu Moran silently stood behind Shen Yun and gently covered the top of his head with his palm.
Shen Yun’s body stiffened for a moment, and then he looked up at him with a smile and a quiet expression, “Teacher Xu, so early?”
Xu Moran sat down beside him, hesitating for a moment, looking at him with sad and warm eyes.
Shen Yun smiled, “Does Teacher Xu also want to say what those people outside say? That won’t be necessary, I’ve already heard a lot.”
Xu Moran looked into his eyes, “No, Shen Yun, I actually want to say that Zhou Lan, he is not someone who would invest his feelings in others.”
He deliberately said it very euphemistically. In fact, he just wanted to say: Zhou Lan is just playing with you and will not invest his feelings in you.
Shen Yun smiled, “What does Teacher Xu think feelings are? How many people can take feelings seriously? Teacher Xu, can you?”
Whenever he softly stabbed Xu Moran with a knife, he would get a kind of perverted pleasure.
He smiled as he watched Xu Moran’s face slowly turn white, then laughed in understanding, “Even Teacher Xu can’t do it? Then why care so much?”
Xu Moran anxiously explained, “I’m not…”
Shen Yun reached out and squeezed his shoulder, smiling mischievously, “There’s no need to be nervous, Teacher Xu, that day President Zhou just had a stomach problem and I went to send him home.”
He blinked and looked into Xu Moran’s eyes again, laughing softly, “How many people are as serious as Teacher Xu? See, I know.”
Snow-white fingertips gently poked Xu Moran’s heart. Shen Yun smiled and left.