And here’s the duet! Only some minor edits have been done compared to the intro post, so if you read this scene before, still let me know what your thoughts are now that you’ve gotten to know Sheng Sheng, Toupai, and all the friends. Just to switch it up, I chose a different MV for the song than the intro post.
Chapter 19 – Yan Du Xian [Salted Pork Soup] (4)
Gu Sheng had completely frozen.
Qiang Qing Qi was an action-oriented person. After saying this, he was already asking the recording engineer to search for the background music and motioning to her that she could go into the soundproof live room. Soon, Fei Shao, with an evil smirk on his face, had very considerately printed off the lyrics and brought them over to the two of them.
Gu Sheng went to stand next to Qiang Qing Ci, put on a pair of headphones, and glanced at the faces of everyone standing on the other side of the glass wall. She honestly felt like she was going to have a heart attack…… DaRen, are you completely changing over your style, and right before you retire from the entertainment circle, you’re letting loose and starting to seek out rumors and gossip? T T
Meeting for the first time and already recording a duet in the studio. Was this really okay? …
With one hand covering her headset, Gu Sheng heard Qiang Qing Ci ask her, “Need to practice a few times?”
“I…” Gu Sheng forced herself to forget that there were actually seven or eight other people quietly listening in on what the two of them were saying. “I might need to practice along with the background music one time. DaRen… how would you like to work out the parts?”
Qiang Qing Ci’s eyes sparkled with laughter. Glancing at her, he put on his headphones and answered, “The opening of this song is really high. I’ll sing the chorus. The rest…” He picked up a pen and marked off a few lines. “We’ll sing these lines together. The remainder you sing by yourself, okay?”
Was this really okay? …
Girls were supposed to be able to sing higher than men… T T
If Toupai’s fans heard this, they would on one hand be saying, all starry-eyed, “DaRen is amazing!” while on the other hand be saying that Sheng Sheng Man was completely useless… But Gu Sheng felt that, even if she did try to sing that high, her voice would definitely crack. In view of the fact that Toupai had so effortlessly sung “Drunken Dream in Divine Rain”, he was probably more suited for this song’s chorus.
That other little spirit in her that was Toupai’s diehard fan was reprimanding this little spirit who was trying her best to keep level-headed: Even if I never heard him sing “Drunken Dream in Divine Rain”, I still have complete faith that my dada can sing anything with no problems at all!!!!
The level-headed spirit surrendered.
In reality, from the moment she stood in this soundproof room next to Toupai, level-headedness had completely left her.
Gu Sheng was very familiar with this song. In a low voice, she read through the lyrics once in order to avoid the embarrassing incident where, halfway through singing, she did not recognize a particular word. Then, feeling that she was about ready, she said, “DaRen, I’m good.”
Qiang Qing Ci answered her with a “mm” and then said, “You can call me Qiang Qing Ci, or you can call me Mo Qingcheng. You don’t have to keep calling me ‘DaRen.’”
In her headset, she could again hear clamoring coming from the group of people on the outside of the room.
“Sheng Sheng, say it, say it. The best would be to call him Qing Ci or Qingcheng…”
“That’s enough, Feng Ya Song …” Dou Dou Dou Bing frowned at him before offering her advice through the glass wall. “Sheng Sheng, calling him Qiang Qing Ci will make it seem like you two aren’t very close. Mo Qingcheng would be better, yes? Huh?”
“I agree.” Wwwwk’s opinion was concise and to the point.
“I agree, too.” Fei Shao immediately chose his group to join.
Even Jue Mei finally stood up from the sofa and walked over to stand behind Fei Shao. Placing a hand on Fei Shao’s shoulder, he said seriously, “Sheng Sheng, if you want to progress the relationship further so that it becomes a 3-D world friendship, you will need to call him Mo Qingcheng.”
All you, DaRens…
Did we really need to be this serious about this kind of thing? T T
Whatever you wish to call me will be okay.” Even Toupai could not tolerate the people outside anymore. Unable to hold back his laughter, he said, “I just didn’t want you to feel too uptight.”
“Alright…” She nearly slipped and said “DaRen” again but immediately managed to stop herself. “Uh, Mo… Qingcheng.”
( ⊙ o ⊙)…… Why did she suddenly feel like this was a matchmaking blind date?
And it was a blind date surrounded by nosy aunties watching as she and her date introduced themselves to one another …
Gu Sheng could swear she must have been blushing right then. She raised one hand unconsciously to the side of her headphones, acting as if she needed to study the lyrics, to partially block her face from view. Seeing that both of them were ready, the recording engineer quickly started the background music. The two of them followed Toupai’s plan and, without much trouble, familiarized themselves with the song to the musical accompaniment.
Seriously, Toupai was someone who could really sing.
Gu Sheng had to sing her part while still giving part of her attention to listen to Toupai sing.
Listening to someone sing at such a close distance like this, especially when this someone was the perfect Toupai, was definitely a scene she had never imagined before. After they had basically practiced through the entire song, Toupai very diligently told her that they would have to sing through another time and even did not forget to thoughtfully advise her, “Don’t put too much effort into your voice right now. After we’ve found the feeling in the song this time through, then we will start to do the actual singing. Save your breath and energy for later.”
Gu Sheng nodded.
But when she discovered that the second time around, Toupai did not even need to look at the lyrics… she realized that this second practice was really only for her benefit…
This time, besides singing himself, Toupai was mainly paying attention to her. After he had finished singing his own part, he immediately looked over at her.
Gu Sheng originally could have come in at her part just fine, but with his one glance, she actually stumbled in early.
“Sheng Sheng, don’t be nervous, don’t be nervous,” Dou Dou Dou Bing could not help laughing gleefully. “Even though I totally understand that completely normal feeling you’re having, where you can’t stay calm after Unrivalled Allure Toupai DaRen has taken one look at you… But, it gets better after you get used to it.”
Mo Qingcheng’s eyes glanced over to the other side of the glass wall. Silence fell immediately.
Gu Sheng forced herself not to get distracted and was finally able to get through this round.
“It’s for real now, little girl.” Even the recording engineer was finding this situation very amusing. “It’s okay. Once you have officially sang through once, there will be a lot of lines where you will each have to go back to re-record separately.”
“Alright.” Gu Sheng’s face was burning.
Everyone here was clearly amusing themselves by making fun of her, you know? T T
First time meeting all of them too, you know…
“Don’t be nervous.” Toupai’s voice was low and soft and had the power to calm a person’s heart.
Very quickly, the musical introduction of the song could be heard.
With one hand on the microphone’s frame, Mo Qingcheng finally started singing the first line along with the background music:
“Your wedding gown like fire has scorched the horizon
Henceforth, the setting sun will sear my heart [‘til red] like vermilion…”
When he opened his mouth to sing the first note, Gu Sheng swore she clearly heard her own heartbeat.
Seriously, it sounded so good it could make someone cry.
Effortless high notes that carried an intense sense of anguish and unwillingness to let go.
He even gave the listeners the feeling that he was the general in the story – someone who did not want to give in, did not want to let go of the woman he loved, but caught between the country and the princess, he had no choice but to only stand and watch as the princess left, to allow her to enter into a political marriage…
Gu Sheng was a person who loved music, and at the same time, she loved any stories set in the ancient times.
The cruelest thing in the world, perhaps, was after having possessed something, to lose it again. If one had never experienced those beautiful feelings before, they would not be etched into the bones and engraved on the heart. And then to use a knife and slice away, one inch at a time, those veins and bones that were joined together because of love. That was really too cruel.
As she sang this song, she could not help looking straight up at Mo Qingcheng.
Mo Qingcheng’s deep black eyes also carried her reflection in them.
As the two of them neared the end of the song, that gentle yet sorrowful section, she deliberately sang slightly offbeat to Mo Qingcheng. His male voice sang first followed by her clear and somewhat mournful repetition of his lyrics.
“Drifting petals are falling again in this season,
Yet your wedding gown is more brilliant than those falling flowers
Your lips move, as if once again to sing ‘Shang Ye’ [Oh Heaven]
But what you say is ‘I am willing to part from my love for him.’”
What a sorrowful sentence: I am willing to part from my love for him.
As Gu Sheng sang the last note, she found she was having difficulty removing herself from the story.
But then, to her surprise, she heard Toupai unexpectedly start to speak some lines, lines that had not even appeared once when they were rehearsing. “I desire to know you deeply and love you. Forever may this be unchanging…”
In Mo Qingcheng’s voice, she had a sense of rapport, as if he, too, was captured within this story.
Blossoms swirling in the sky of Chang’an. The smell of blood, strong as wine, carrying on the wind.
He looked straight into her eyes and told her, “’Til the different directions of the world no longer exist, ‘til the seas dry, only then will I cease to love you.”
 The first two lines of the ancient poem, Shang Ye.
 In formal literature or ancient texts, this means “you” and is used when addressing a man.
 In formal literature or ancient texts, this means “you” and is used when addressing a woman.
Since many of you may have read this chapter already, I thought I’d include a little bonus here. Check out the adorable cartoon done by an artist who is also a fan of the novel. This is Toupai and Sheng Sheng’s first meeting, when she was on the morning bus chatting in YY with Geng Xiaoxing and his voice suddenly appeared out of nowhere.
As for the song translation of 上邪 Shang Ye, I won’t repost it. You can check out the end of this post for it as well as a translation of the ancient poem, also called Shang Ye, the song references.