Qin Guan looked up as a breeze went through the lower hem of his frock. He moved gracefully, in the style of a scholar. A light smell of sandalwood surrounded him.
The director and scriptwriter were both shocked. The most surprised one was Nie Jin though, who was trying out for the role.
Although he had graduated from the Shanghai Theatre Academy, he hadn’t gotten a chance to star in any decent TV plays. The scriptwriter had made changes to the story and made Bianji the main character.
The unknown handsome young man would be his rival for the part. Director Gong seemed to appreciate him very much.
The director was slightly excited. A monk who aroused the deep love of a princess and had intercourse with her, thus break religious precepts, sounded a lot like Qin Guan. He looked at Nie Jin, who was standing behind him in confusion. This boy is outstanding and professional too. Besides, I just promised him the leading role. It would be shameful to take my word back.
The scriptwriter maintained a clear mind before Qin Guan’s beauty. He kindly pointed to the new script, reminding the director of the different periods in Bianji's life. The director thought about the simple, honest actor who would play Bianji as a teenager and looked at Qin Guan again.
Finally, he realized that he would not be able to find two more actors to match Qin Guan's looks. For the consistency of the whole play, he had to reject Qin Guan.
He told him to wait for them to get back to him, which was what they usually told people when they failed an audition. Nie Jin exhaled in relief. No one would want to be Qin Guan’s opponent. I got very lucky today. It seems like my ordinary beauty brought me luck.
Qin Guan's legendary victory streak was broken. In the modelling circle, his beauty was a prominent advantage that swept away all obstacles, but when it came to films and TV shows, which were more complex, it was a double-edged sword.
The producer, scriptwriter, director and actors could reject anyone. No one could get successful easily, unless they were beautiful. In 2000 though, there weren't that many plays or roles for beautiful actors to select from.
Qin Guan’s range of character choices was limited. At the time, all the directors were dreaming of international prizes.
The overseas media was not interested in a rising China though, but in the everyday lives of ordinary Chinese people.
Many directors had been on the wrong path. Reality didn't equal ugliness. It also encircled the true meaning of beauty and love. In the lens though, those were omitted, either consciously or unconsciously.
This restriction was not caused by Qin Guan's looks, but the political and economic environment. Qin Guan still had a long way to go.
A good beginning was still just a beginning. After thorough consideration, Qin Guan collected his thoughts and smiled confidently.
Just in time, Assistant Mou handed him a bottle of mineral water. In the early summer, a considerate girl could make anyone happy. The small flies in the water were merely a detail!
Qin Guan was ready to go again. He started his car and drove off to his next audition.
His second audition was a piece of cake. Yang Lianting was only a supporting part in Zhang Jizhong's play "The Legendary Swordsman". The character would appear in several episodes though, so Zhang himself would make the final decision.
Qin Guan had no idea about the great advantage he had until Zhang opened his mouth and he heard him speak with the accent of his hometown.
Unless one was an anchorman or a TV show host, their local accent was clear to their fellow townsmen.
Their native dialect narrowed the gap between them, and the bold and generous Director Zhang was very satisfied with Qin Guan. He made a decision as soon as possible. Linghu Chong would not be getting the lead. That co-star was not worthy of Qin Guan's talent.
Usually Director Zhang would leave after a cup of tea, but the two of them chatted happily for more than half an hour. By the time they were ready to leave, Qin Guan was on Zhang's white list. Sister Xue also took this chance to get Zhang’s private telephone number.
It was a happy surprise and a blessing in disguise. One successful interview and an unsuccessful one. Qin Guan considered himself a lucky guy.
Yang’s part would begin in Zhejiang Province in July, when Qin Guan would be on summer vacation. It seemed that Qin Guan wouldn’t be able to return home that year, so he decided to spend time at his new house. The adjustments had been finished, but there was still no furniture inside.
When everything was ready, Qin Guan counted his savings and picked up his girlfriend to visit the Ikea in Madian.
Cars were rare in the capital at the time, so there was no traffic jam. The Ikea was located at the north side of Madian, so its parking place was sufficient for its customers.
Aiming in fashion and simpleness, Ikea satisfied the demands of the petty bourgeoisie and the white-collar class.
Qin Guan parked his car, opened the passenger door, and locked it after Cong Nianwei got out. They stepped inside the mall hand in hand.
The thing that impressed Qin Guan the most was the western fast food. His favorite dessert was the ice-cream cone.
The golden yellow cone was crisp and it smelled wonderful. Snow-white ice-cream with a thick milky fragrance was squeezed out of the machine, accumulating in the cone like a small torch. The little tail at the end was so sweet!
Cong Nianwei bit the white ice-cream with her pink lips, leaving a cute mark. Qin Guan stared at the cone in Cong Nianwei's hand with shining eyes, making her feel embarrassed.
"Do you prefer vanilla?" Cong Nianwei kindly exchanged her ice-cream for Qin Guan’s. Maybe he just didn’t like chocolate.