I’m leaving on vacation in a week, and I may not be able to make my regular post in a couple weeks. So, just in case, here’s an extra post. I am the slowest translator in the world, so extra posts probably will not happen often. 🙂
By the way, another big thanks to Peanuts for finding this pic for me. Come back soon… I need my artistic consultant!
Chapter 4 — Clear Noodles in Beef Curry Soup (2)
With one hand covering her left earphone , Gu Sheng patted her own chest furiously with her other hand
It was still beating madly.
You definitely could not blame her for making a big deal out of nothing. This was the first time in her entire life someone had said “I love you” to her, and it was so sudden. On top of that, the voice that said it was, to her, the most gorgeous voice. Exhaling lightly, she quietly lamented, “Oh god, oh god, I’m going crazy, I’m going crazy, keep cool, keep cool…”
All of a sudden, she had a newfound respect for those female CVs who had recorded dialogue with him in his earlier years. How did they manage to bear it with all those different scripted lines of love declarations and confessions? If it were her, she would definitely only be able to send over lines that she recorded in solitude. She absolutely, absolutely would not be able to PIA script with him live.
Very shortly after, Qiang Qing Ci had to leave. Jue Mei teased him with a couple sentences and then left it at that.
Upon her return to school after the New Year, it was the two-week long period of final examinations.
Geng Xiaoxing and Gu Sheng did not dare let themselves get too crazily busy, so they agreed to come out of seclusion in two weeks. Everyday, the only things the two of them did were study and take exams, study and take exams. So in this way, they fumbled dazedly through until, on the fourteenth day, they stepped back into their dorm room. Finally, they felt as if their life had been re-powered up and they had been resurrected from the dead.
Gu Sheng logged into her own Weibo to take care of her two hundred or so stray fans.
Being the little unknown cover singer that she was, her Weibo account had been around for two years before her number of followers had reached that number. But she hadn’t been online for two weeks and now she suddenly got notification that she had more than 2000 additional followers? How did that happen? Was Sina suddenly being kind and sending out zombie fans??
Terribly excited, Gu Sheng opened up the notification and delightedly flipped through them one by one. When she reached the last one, she was struck with shock.
Qiang Qing Ci.
She was afraid she was mistaken and deliberately moved her mouse to hover over the name. It had a yellow “V.” She wasn’t mistaken. It was Toupai DaRen.
She did not know which day he had added her. Because of exams, she had not logged in for a full five days.
Gu Sheng thought through countless reasons, but in the end, she could not figure out why he was suddenly following her. She had followed his Weibo for a long time now and knew that it was rare that he would follow anyone. Besides the few CVs, scriptwriters, planners, and cover singers from his very early years who were now all considered old and senior in terms of rank, he did not even have any personal friends on his account. However, she did understand his intentions. Most fans liked to dig out gossip, and to avoid having his personal information exposed, he completely separated the 2-D world from his 3-D world life.
So…that was why the number of people he followed, to date, had not exceeded one hundred, and furthermore, it had been more than a year since he had last added anyone.
So… those weren’t actually zombie fans. Clearly, they were Toupai DaRen’s diehard fans.
Gu Sheng stared blankly at her computer screen.
She had completely experienced the power of “hugging a thigh.” All he did was start following you. He did not say or re-tweet or forward anything, yet he instantly brought you more than 2000 fans. And right now, that number is still rising crazily.
Behind her, Geng Xiaoxing was cheerily munching on melon seeds and had dragged the wastebasket in front of herself. She was focused and meticulous in what she was doing. “Why are you all of sudden so quiet?”
Gu Sheng did not hear her.
Puzzled with this, Geng Xiaoxing poked her head over for a look. “Oh my gawd, you’ve been followed by Toupai.”
Gu Sheng’s awareness was brought back by the two characters, “Toupai,” and she turned around dazedly. “Yeah… He hasn’t followed anyone new for more than a year now. I’m scared of getting beat up by his fans.”
“Ai, I think you should close that to any comments to avoid having any nasty comments from people who might have fallen into the vinegar pot.”
Gu Sheng agreed and immediately followed through by shutting her Weibo post to any more comments.
She thought about it and still felt uneasy, so she flipped through her Weibo to make sure there were no boneheaded, tasteless, profane, or similar type content that could affect her image in Qiang Qing Ci Dada‘s eyes. Fortunately, she was not the type who liked to blather, and she rarely posted. Most of her posts were related to what she ate today, what she would eat tomorrow, and what she was planning on eating in the future…
A chowhound for sure, there was no doubt about that. But at least she was a chowhound with integrity, who had her own opinions, and who wasn’t boneheaded.
Breathing a silent sigh of relief, she began to flip through her private messages. One of them was from the head of the vocal department of her own music association. Basically…. um, he was asking her to try to apply for a yellow “V” to try to increase recognition for the association.
Gu Sheng, this little unknown, was also part of a little unknown association that had been established for only one month. The vocal and lyrics departments at least had a few people. Post-production and artistic design each had one person, and as for public communications, um… the association president himself took on that role.
She had been lucky enough to work with two well-known lyricists, so in the president’s eyes, she was a sought after prize.
Pulling her thoughts away from the whole situation of being followed by Qiang Qing Ci, she forced herself to start filling out the online form to apply for “V” status. When everything was completed, she attached that stamped “verification of identity” document the association president had given her and sent off her application.
The webpage jumped to the next page and indicated that an invitation request could be sent to friends that had “V” status to act as a supplementary reference and verification.
Should these friends provide feedback, it would increase the chance of approval…
Gu Sheng thought that sounded reasonable.
Her eyes quickly swept over the list of friend options the system had generated. They were all friends she had known in the past. One by one, she selected each of them until at last, she was only missing one. Hmm, missing one… She stared at the name, “Qiang Qing Ci,” and struggled within herself for a long time.
To invite? Or not invite?
Since… he was following her already, he shouldn’t mind being a secondary reference, right?
She debated silently for a few seconds, then grit her teeth and selected him.
After she sent out the invitation, she started feeling anxious. Would this be too much of a bother to Toupai?
But before she had finished beating herself up over this, a private message arrived in her inbox.
When she opened it, she discovered it was actually Qiang Qing Ci’s verification message…… And then it was followed up right away by another private message: I never thought that the first PM you’d send me would be one that asked me to be a supplementary verification.
Gu Sheng felt even more embarrassed after this, and with a rapid tap, tap, tap, she immediately typed off a row of characters: Biggest, biggest thank you, Qiang Qing Ci Dada, for your help!
Qiang Qing Ci: No problem.
Gu Sheng was stuck. Thinking for a bit, she sent a reply: DaRen, have you eaten clear noodles in beef curry soup before?
Qiang Qing Ci did not reply.
She felt slightly discouraged but nevertheless, she decided to work with his interests. Quickly, she typed off the dish that she cooked the best:
For the beef, first cut it into small pieces, rinse clean, then put in boiling water just to get rid of the impurities. Soak a handful of the clear noodles in cooled, pre-boiled (it has to be cold water, k). Then, in a stockpot, add water, beef, scallions, ginger, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil over high heat. Skim off any scum. Add cooking wine to get rid of any gaminess. After it has boiled, turn heat to low to allow it to stew slowly…… About two hours or so, then add some salt to taste.
Finally, strain out the beef and put it into a clear broth. Add curry powder and cook for 5 minutes.
Add the noodles in, bring it all to a boil, and then you’re ready to eat.
Oh right. ~ Don’t forget to add cilantro. Tastes really good. This is my favorite soup. ~
After she sent the message, Gu Sheng thought, mm-hmm, it could be considered a bit of a repayment to him.
Seeing that a long time had passed and still Qiang Qing Ci had not yet replied, she surmised that Toupai Da’ren must be busy. She was about to shut off her computer and go eat when a private message from him showed up again.
Qiang Qing Ci: This dish is one I’m actually really good at making.
Gu Sheng: ……
Qiang Qing Ci: Mm-hmm, it’s true.
Gu Sheng: …… Originally… I had wanted to repay you. I’ll just have to collect a few more recipes and try again.
Qiang Qing Ci: Repay?
Gu Sheng: Y(^_^)Y Of course. I troubled Toupai DaRen to personally be a supplementary reference for me. Of course I need to repay you.
Qiang Qing Ci: You really want to repay me?
His question back to her made Gu Sheng’s heart start to beat like a little drum… DaRen wouldn’t suggest some weird or tricky request, would he? But she had absolute faith in DaRen‘s character, so clenching her teeth, she sent back her answer: Uh huh! Cupped fist!
Qiang Qing Ci: Sing a song for me.
 Orig. 微博. Literally meaning ‘microblog,’ Weibo is similar to Twitter and follows similar practices. The biggest microblogging service in China is offered by Sina, and its full name is Sina Weibo, although due to its popularity, “Weibo” usually directly refers to Sina Weibo.
 In Weibo, an account which has a yellow “V” next to the name indicates that this account has been authenticated by Weibo to indeed belong to the famous person of that name. For example, here is the Weibo account of the author of this novel, Mo Bao Fei Bao. Note the yellow “V.” http://www.weibo.com/mobaofeibao
 Orig. 三次元 ‘san ci yuan.’ As opposed to the 2-D world, which is the online world, the 3-D world can be thought of as real life and all that exists and happens within it.
 In Chinese, for someone to “eat vinegar” means that they are jealous. Here, Geng Xiaoxing’s comment is referring to any fans who were extremely jealous of Gu Sheng for being followed by Toupai.
 Orig. 大大. Literally, “big big.” In the online world, ‘dada’ is used to refer to someone who is highly skilled or capable.