I have a favour to ask of everyone. By show of hands (comments), how many people read the song translations? Are they helpful? Just nice to have? I have tried to translate nearly every song that makes a proper appearance in the story, but do they add to your reading enjoyment? Just curious to see if people would miss them if the lyric translations decreased. (Not saying that’s what I’m planning, but they are my greatest nemesis in this translation project… :p)
It’s confirmed where the insider information on Sheng Sheng is coming from. One of my favourite “moves” by Toupai is in this chapter. So high profile!
Chapter 23 – Spicy Crispy-Skin Fish (1)
She heard the alert indicating there was a private message.
Lifting up her head, she saw the screen was being inundated with comment after comment of love declarations. The senior manager of Qiang Qing Ci’s YY channel was there, working continuously to maintain order. “Calm down, calm down. You can’t spam the screen on someone else’s channel, eh….. Alright, kids…… If you keep spamming, I’m going to have to come back tomorrow with gift in hand to apologize T T……” Her eyes seemed as if they were seeing everything in a blur, mainly because there were so many online users. If each person made even only one comment, there was no possible way to keep up.
“How come DaRen isn’t saying anything? ( ⊙ o ⊙) AH! Maybe he’s having a private chat session with Sheng Sheng?……”
“They must be private chatting…”
“What do you think they’re talking about?”
“I heard that they had their in person meet-up today????”
( ⊙ o ⊙)
( ⊙ o ⊙)
How did somebody know that???? I just got back to the school not that long ago, you know? T T
Gu Sheng was already starting to feel she could not hold up any longer. Suddenly, she remembered that her private message window was still flashing. She thought it might be her association president or Zou Diao’er or someone like that, but it unexpectedly turned out to be Toupai.
Toupai: My phone’s battery is dead, so I just dropped by here to say a quick hi.
Gu Sheng: ^^Okay.
Toupai disappeared from the channel very shortly after.
So many Toupai fans were still there. She truly was having a hard time digesting this all, and tearfully, she begged Zou Diao’er to take over for her. Inspired by his idol and god, Zou Diao’er immediately got onto his microphone, and Gu Sheng fled the scene right away. Indeed, getting to Toupai’s status had its disadvantages: everywhere you went, a group of kids would follow you around and, in an instant, they could flood the screen of someone else’s channel with comments…
Her mind in a whirl, she exited out of YY.
She began to organize the things she needed for class tomorrow. Geng Xiaoxing was sitting with a radiant smile on her face in front of her own desk, and seeing from the corner of her eye Gu Sheng climb down from the bed, she suddenly said into her headset microphone, “Sheng Sheng’s getting off her bed now.” When she finished saying this, she pulled her headset plug out of the jack to allow the audio to come through on her speakers, deliberately letting Gu Sheng listen in.
Jue Mei’s voice quickly came back through the computer speakers. “Hmm, Toupai’s gone off to take a shower. Those two are truly in sync with each other.”
Gu Sheng bared her teeth menacingly at Geng Xiaoxing, mouthing a silent threat: “You are so dead.”
Jue Mei Sha Yi’s voice was heard again shortly. “The video game promotional video we did the dubbing for was just released.”
Geng Xiaoxing put on her headphones again. “Let’s carry on. I type, you talk, though. Otherwise, Sheng Sheng will hear what I say…”
Fine. She was thin air.
However, Gu Sheng was still rather curious about that promotional video Jue Mei had mentioned. Large-scale type promotions such as this one usually generated extremely high-quality productions and were definitely worth collecting. And anyways… she remembered that Toupai had said he had participated in it as well. While she was opening up her computer, she cast a guilty glance at Geng Xiaoxing, who was enthusiastically rattling away on her keyboard. A question suddenly popped into her mind that piqued her curiosity: Jue Mei Sha Yi had hung out in this online show business for many years now, so how was it that he ended up getting reined in by a girl from outside the entertainment circle?
This world was truly remarkable.
She switched on her computer again and headed over to Toupai’s Weibo page. Sure enough, an official video had just been posted.
Oh, so it was that video game.
She looked at the official channel of the game and saw that a series of couple-focused videos had been released.
It was truly a series.
Toupai had retweeted the one he had worked on. When she opened it up, she instantly heard the soul-stirring background music, a very desolate, sorrowful tune. An ink and wash painting gradually transformed into the story’s male and female leads whom Mo Qingcheng and Dou Dou Dou Bing had provided the voices for. Their two voices, coupled with images taken from the video game, created an atmosphere that was completely different from the fun, cheery setting of this afternoon.
From when the two leads first met to how they both grew to have feelings for one another to finally… their separation.
The character Toupai had voiced walked from the light into darkness.
The girl rushed after him and told the retreating outline of his back, “I will wait for you to come back.”
In the video, the man, his garments fluttering in the wind, gave a very light “mm.” Then, without turning to look back, he disappeared into the darkness.
The music in the background was simply too mournful and caused this parting to feel…
Gu Sheng blinked her eyes rapidly. Her nose was tingling.
From behind her, someone tapped her on the shoulder. She turned around and looked at Geng Xiaoxing with red eyes. “Yes?”
“What’s the matter? … Friend Sheng Sheng…” Geng Xiaoxing had originally intended on asking if she wanted a to have a late night snack or something, but when she saw the look on her face, she was alarmed. “Had an argument with Toupai? No wonder you got off your mike so quickly…”
“What are you talking about? …” Gu Sheng slapped away her hand gloomily. “I must play this video game. This trailer is so touching… But, it’s a tragic ending… And it’s that kind of tragedy where you’ve got a mouthful of blood that’s stuck in your chest and you can’t spit it out or swallow it back down…”
That’s the most painful type, you know? T T
Geng Xiaoxing was thrilled about this. “You actually got all red-eyed after watching the promotional video dubbed by Toupai?”
She did not want to admit to this, but the video was still open and right there on her screen… There was no way she could deny it, k?….. Geng Xiaoxing was immediately gleeful. “Ah, ‘tis true love, indeed… Ah, true love…”
“You are not allowed to tell Jue Mei.” Gu Sheng still managed to remember her dignity.
“He’s listening in already.” Geng Xiaoxing pointed at her computer. “I told him only you and I are in our dorm room. He said, since we all knew each other anyway, might as well just turn on the mike…”
“Can you please shut off your mike first?” Gu Sheng felt extremely depressed.
Geng Xiaoxing quickly clasped her hands together and bowed, then turned her microphone off.
“But it’s no big deal.” Geng Xiaoxing put on a show of solemnness. “Supposedly, many, many girls shed tears tonight after watching the video. Jue Mei even said, Toupai really knows how to choose his projects, doing a tragic story, unlike him where the character he provided the voice for is completely unromantic.”
Toupai seemed to be someone who loved deeply and steadfastly. And his low voice especially showed that…
Jue Mei, on the other hand…
Gu Sheng unashamedly mocked him silently. Jue Mei was indeed suited for those unromantic, insensitive roles. Who else could possibly compete with him on those?…
With her head resting in her hands, she sat there and watched the video over and over again.
After watching it several times, she was already able to hum the melody of the video game’s theme song. She was even starting to consider rearranging the accompaniment to the song as a gift to Toupai… And if he could sing a cover of it, that would be soooo wonderful.
While she was still lost in her thoughts, her WeChat alert beeped. It was Toupai: I can finally turn on my phone again. I just reposted the promotional video for a video game.
Gu Sheng was still immersed in the tragic atmosphere. Seeing Toupai’s message made her think of the silhouette in the video that had gradually walked further and further away into the darkness. Without even thinking, she replied to him with her idea: I saw it. I want to rearrange the song… as a gift to you. Such a touching video.
After she sent off the message, she grew somewhat antsy.
Certainly, the number of people who wanted to arrange a song and invite Toupai to sing was so many that the people were probably all falling over one another… As for her, she was just an unknown. Who knew if her arrangement would be good enough for Toupai’s standards?
Toupai sent back a simple, “Sure.”
Only then did she settle down.
It was nearly time for bed, but she still could not bear it and opened up the promotional video one more time.
By the time she was finally about to shut down the webpage, Toupai’s Weibo surprisingly had a new post. It was a PaPa upload, and the photo used was a nighttime shot of her university’s library. Her heart unexplainably leapt a few times. She clicked on the photo and listened.
Toupai spoke rather leisurely:
“Just a little while ago, a girl cried after watching the promotional video. She said she wanted to make a new arrangement of the song for me. It made me remember the song I listened to on repeat when I was preparing to dub this video to get me emotionally prepared.”
What song was it?
She grew increasingly curious.
Toupai did not continue speaking and instead, began to sing. It was only three or four lines.
“Sleepless this night, watching the lights as they wane
Singing a song, sheng sheng man [slow, long, drawn sounds]
My feelings are still warm, though we have parted
Alone, in thin, cold garments
Alright. Everyone, good night.”
She clearly remembered the synopsis for this song, “Bai Shou” [A Head of White Hair]. As someone who shared his love for song, she could even share the same feelings he must have had before he provided the voice acting, when he was listening to this song. In the promotional video, she had said she would wait for him. He agreed, and then never looked back as he stepped into the darkness.
It is not important whether, after this parting, we can meet again. I understand your yearning. Even if I should be alone as my hair turns white, I will not feel lonely.
Even now, as she thought about this again, her eyes once more started tingling with tears.
Oh no. Going to cry again. T T It honestly sucks to be a voice lover …
啪啪 ‘PaPa’ is a social networking app that integrates photos with audio recordings. Users can take a photo and then attaching audio directly to that photo, which can then be shared with friends or uploaded directly to Weibo, WeChat, QQ, and other social networking sites. See papa.me or https://itunes.apple.com/cn/app/id553749400?mt=8
Hope you all understood what was going on at the end with the song and the way I did the translation. Toupai chose a song where the words, 声声慢 “sheng sheng man” were embedded in the lyrics. “Sheng sheng man” means a slow, drawn-out sound or voice, and in the case of this lyrics, it is saying, “A slow tune was sung with long, drawn-out notes.”
The song is called 白首 “Bai Shou” [Head of White Hair]. It is actually the ending theme song from a radio drama called 墨印 “Mo Yin,” which is based on a BL novel of the same name. Hence, that is why the song is a duet of two male voices. I honestly don’t know anything about the story. Song synopsis and lyric translation below. Lyrics are color-coded for each singer so you can follow the story of the song more easily. (Red for 墨, blue for 印, and green when they are singing together.)
To hold that hand until your heads are white. Several fleeting decades, yet upon looking back, they seem only a moment.
An instant that can compare with eternity.
That night, he stood before the lake for a long time. What or who he was thinking about, no one knew.
The only thing that was known was that, the next day, his head of hair had turned white.
Eternity is merely an instant.
On the Chinese parasol tree, light rain drizzles, night so cold
A night lake, a promise
A bottle of unfiltered rice wine should have been filled with love and tender attachment
But we are not fated to be together
Sleepless this night, watching the lights as they wane
Singing a song in a long, drawn voice
My feelings are still warm, though we have parted
Alone, in thin, cold garments
Splendid as the orchid cactus, which blooms only briefly
Blossoming in the moment that we turn around and part our ways
Do you know my heart is drifting chaotically?
The string of my heart has broken with the falling of a tear
Our gazes meet through the curtain, but we do not let ourselves greet each other
And we can only fault fate that we met each other too late
I am already stopped beside the Naihe Bridge[a]
How can I offer you any promises?
The moon itself has no shadow, but its cold glow creates slanting shadows
Leaves protecting the flower will eventually wither away
What has passed away still seems to entangle and impede
And turning back to look, my gaze is filled completely with things of the past
Only dimly discernible, like the mists of our past
Lingering and encircling me for so long
Do you know how my heart is longing?
A single ink stamp has branded itself onto my heart
Let me alone bear
The punishment from Heaven for the deep love that was short-lived
Trying in vain to hold back the passage of time
But in one night, the passing of many years has left its mark
Separated by the distance of a river
Remembering your gentle smile
Dreams at dawn are incomplete, yet the dream will not break off
I cry out with a hoarse voice and in exhaustion
Waiting beneath the nighttime’s lake for our reunion (Waiting on the nighttime’s lake for our reunion)
The swiftly passing time is like an arrow
I know you understand my yearning (I understand your yearning)
Even if I should be alone as my hair turns white, I am not lonely
[a] 奈何桥. In Chinese folklore, after someone dies and enters the netherworld, he/she must pass over the Naihe Bridge. On this bridge, Old Lady Meng serves every soul that crosses the bridge a soup that erases all memories of the previous life and allows the soul to enter into the next incarnation.