Chapter 11: Nitpicking


During the hottest spell of autumn, the temperature was high, but the air was dry and it was very sunny. It wasn’t so hot that you couldn’t breathe.


But that was just the atmosphere outdoors. At this time, Yan Mu Lin, who was still getting used to his body, was facing an enormous challenge. He thought that a team capable of making superior-quality anime would have a better recording studio than their school’s, but obviously, he was wrong.


Director Chen told him that they were saving money and that it was good for the youth to experience the place where previous CVs used to record in. He wanted them to experience the hardships, hoping it would create wonders.


Towards this, Yan Mu Lin could still accept. In the past, he worked in such an environment where the weather was at its hottest, or when the air conditioner and fans could not be turned on so that it would not affect the quality of the work. A bit of wind could affect the sound quality and final outcome of the character’s voice.


In this production of 《Pan Jinlian》, majority of the voice actors worked behind-the-scenes. Surrounded by this group of people, Yan Mu Lin, as a newcomer, was very polite and courteous to his seniors. He had a sense of propriety and was not arrogant nor self-centered. He got along with everyone in a week. Almost everyone, towards this kind of youth, showed goodwill. It’s best to go earliest and leave the lasted. Never complain, and say anything in their backs. Director Chen said in private that this person must not be underestimated, as he was convinced in his vision and was most likely not going to be wrong.


Most people expressed goodwill towards Yan Mu Lin, but not everyone. There was still a small number of people who were hostile to him.


A first-rate celebrity who was expected to be the female lead of Chen Yu Chao’s 《Pan Jinlian》heard that an unknown boy was given the role. This kind of thing, she could not swallow. Not only that. She lost it to a boy, not a girl!


Who cares if Chen Yu Chao, that ordinary-faced man, liked that boy. She must look for an opportunity to meet the person who robbed her rice bowl. Let’s see if he was a nine-tailed fox that could fool around with a “director”.


The nine-tailed fox Yan Mu Lin just recently distributed the voice acting team’s lunch boxes. He was reading a book, while currently listening to Wu Dalang’s CV talk. “Listen, a meimei told me that a superstar would come in the afternoon. Do you want to see?”


Yan Mu Lin was puzzled, “A superstar? Which one?” There weren’t a lot of people that can be considered a superstar in his eyes.



Recently, Yan Mu Lin and Min Tong Shu have performed the most. They were usually seen talking about their roles. Their teamwork was really good. Director Chen was satisfied with their progress. Min Tong Shu had several years of experience in the voice acting industry. Director Chen intended to make him take care of Yan Mu Lin, but when they got in contact with each other, it was Min Tong Shu who kept on asking Yan Mu Lin questions. In any case, they were progressing very well, without delays. They also saved the animation studio some expenses.


Min Tong Shu spoke while looking at his script, “The female lead’s voice actress of Director Chen’s 《Alice in Wonderland》, Zhang Jingjing.”


Yan Mu Lin thought of something important, “Why is she coming? Is it for publicity?” She wouldn’t be coming here because of a lover, right? Were first-rate celebrities that free?


Min Tong Shu was also a CV with a bit of fame, but because he wasn’t very handsome, and his voice’s quality was quite weak, he was forced to be a behind-the-scenes voice actor. It was regrettable that his talent was lacking.


He said, “I’m not very sure about this. Many young boys, especially those of your age, like her very much.”


While looking at the chicken lunch box Yan Mu Lin set aside for him, Min Tong Shu told Yan Mu Lin some stuff he saw in Baidu about Zhang Jing Jing. To put it plainly, he gossiped.


Although a lot of boys like her, they only see her voice and her fresh and pure looks. But actually, things aren’t so pleasant. Her temper’s really short, you can’t tease her at all. Based on my several years of experience as a CV, I am guessing that she’s childishly coming to the studio to go against you. This is certainly not good.”


Yan Mu Lin’s curiosity was piqued. He poured two cups of low-cost tea, giving a cup to the other man, and said, “Why do you say so?”


Min Tong Shu looked around carefully. Seeing that everyone else had their lunch in the lounge, and no one was around, he moved closer and said: “She previously mentioned in her Weibo that she wanted to be the female lead of Director Chen’s new anime. She also said that Director Chen can’t succeed without her. You should look at her Weibo. You’ll definitely see those nauseating sentences. After that; the media, who wanted to stir up trouble, praised her. They called her Director Chen’s female CV goddess. This gave Director Chen all kinds of pressure. Director Chen naturally ignored her and didn’t give her face at all. The roles’ voice actors were made public today, so she most likely is going to come here to vent. She must have thought that Director Chen would choose her. Who knew that reality would give her a slap in the face. Director Chen did not even mention her.”


Yan Mu Lin saw his point, “So that was the case.” In the entertainment industry, no matter which world, there was no shortage of fighting and scheming against each other. However, this first-rate voice actress’ IQ was really low. To scheme against people, and not expect to be beaten. Do you really expect the person you schemed against to happily knock on your door in their knees to give you money to spend spend spend, buy buy buy!


He did not know if it was because of Min Tong Shu’s inauspicious remark, but in the afternoon, they were called by an assistant meimei to go to the lounge for afternoon tea and snacks. It was from Zhang Jing Jing, she wanted to thank Director Chen for his previous guidance. It was bought for this purpose, but it was sent to the workroom.


As the saying goes, never hit a smiling person. Director Chen could not drive away this female star who was just outside their doorstep, so he had no choice but to let her in. At least she brought little gifts for his staff.


Yan Mu Lin did not want to go, but he was currently portraying a “next-door neighbor’s lovable child” image. This meant that he could not decline, and was forced to follow and hide on the side. He just had to finish his own share and quietly disappear.


Naturally, it was impossible for Yan Mu Lin to do this. Zhang Jing Jing, that woman, did not just come here for afternoon tea.


He didn’t look at her and Chen Yu Chao laughing out loud. He just listened to other unpopular voice actresses exchange compliments, and talk about famous brands. Honestly, when Zhang Jing Jing came in, she was already looking everywhere. She really wanted to know who snatched her role, but still pretended to not have any intention of mentioning the topic.


“Hey, Director Chen, I heard that your new lead’s very talented. Why didn’t you introduce me? Recently, several directors told me that they couldn’t find him. Now I have the chance to get to know him.”


Her fresh and pure appearance hid her true intentions. It was almost as if she really wanted to meet the other person, but in reality, she was the weasel giving the hen New Year’s greetings.


As soon as this was said, everyone’s urge to gossip turned on, their eyes shining. Tsk, tsk, tsk. Are you all looking for a catfight? We don’t know the newcomer’s attitude, but he was destined to be bullied today.


Director Chen raised his legs and popped a green tea pastry in his mouth. He smiled and looked at Yan Mu Lin who was sitting in a corner by the window. He raised his hand and said: “Oh, don’t tell other people that I’m not taking care of the newcomer. Our newcomer is over there. Mu Lin, come here.” The first part of the sentence was addressed to Zhang Jing Jing, while the latter was to call Yan Mu Lin.


She really came here to nitpick! This sentence popped in Yan Mu Lin’s mind, but he quickly wore a standard smile, and pointed to himself: “Director Chen, you were looking for me?”


Director Chen said, “I’m introducing you to your senior. Today, everyone could eat snacks because of her.”


Zhang Jing Jing’s face turned slightly stiff. Director Chen’s sarcasm wasn’t welcome. However, when she saw Yan Mu Lin’s handsome face, she quickly remembered that she came here to meet the newcomer. Her aim was not Chen Yu Chao, a man without vision.


Before Yan Mu Lin went towards them, Min Tong Shu shot him a look that said: “Look, I’m right”. The two exchanged meaningful looks that only the two of them could understand.


Some women are truly narrow-minded and would haggle over every ounce.


Yan Mu Lin was a college student who has not yet graduated. At first glance, he looked like he just entered the society, but he was in fact hard to bully.


When Zhang Jing Jing came to find trouble today, she was certain that she could beat him. Everyone watched from the sidelines. Only she believed that the other party did not know of her schemes.


As for who in the animation studio told her private information about the project, well, just give anyone some money, and this could be found out. Besides, Yan Mu Lin was selected to play the female lead, this was an open secret. CVs who paid attention to 《Pan Jinlian》’s audition would know that a man was chosen. After hearing that someone was chosen, then they were powerless. If Yan Mu Lin was unskilled,  he would be asked to leave and continue practicing. Things haven’t reached to the point where when you were chosen for the role, they would get to the heart of the matter and dig up until the 18th generation of your ancestors. People who would do such things were not ordinary people.


They would either be someone that’s too fanatic, or a moron.


“Sister Jingjing, hello, the snacks you brought was great. We all like it very much.” When Yan Mu Lin finished this sentence, his face was slightly red, slightly hiding on the side of Director Chen. It was as if it was his first time seeing a real star. He did almost all kinds of unnatural movements in embarrassment.


Naturally, he was pretending.


If there was a pure white lotus in front of him, he just had to perform better than the other person. He’ll be the better Holy Mother. Anyways, he thought that this trick was quite useful. He’ll let the other person know that she was making a mountain out of the molehill, plus there were outsiders.


Zhang Jing Jing usually used that tone to talk with various first-rate celebrities, superstars, and directors, so she was shocked when she heard a similar tone.


This boy really makes her annoyed. Ah, ah, ah. So annoying.


However, she could only suffer, so Zhang Jing Jing went straight to the topic: “I heard that your voice is great. Director Chen praised it endlessly. I don’t know if this jiejie could hear and appreciate it today?”


Yan Mu Lin immediately showed a distressed face, “Director Chen….”


Director Chen waved his hand: “Your Sister Jing Jing wants to guide you. She doesn’t give guidance often, so why not let your sister hear it? Then you could learn. If you can’t learn well then I’ll deduct your wages ah.”


Yan Mu Lin’s eyes widened: “…I will learn well, Director Chen!”


Zhang Jing Jing was about to explode in anger. Damned kid, who are you trying to fool with your tears? Are you bored?!


Not waiting for Zhang Jing Jing’s response, Director Chen brought out a script from his back and pointed to a page, saying: “Mu Lin, just now, weren’t we talking about how this part of the script should be expressed? If you couldn’t find the right feeling, then why don’t you let Zhang Jing Jing demonstrate it for you. Jing Jing, there’s no problem right?” Director Chen asked Zhang Jing Jing with a smile.


Zhang Jing Jing, who was put on the spot, had no choice but to agree, “I.. Of course, it’s no problem.” While looking at the script, Zhang Jing Jing’s face turned pale.


Everyone in the sides: Director Chen, you brought out the script directly from your back! Were you actually prepared for this? In the end, what was in that script!!


As the anime focused on “seduction”, Yan Mu Lin immediately thought which line could make Zhang Jing Jing turn pale. Alright. It was naturally the crucial part of the anime.

rice bowl – livelihood or job

the weasel giving the hen New Year’s greetings – suspicious folk bearing gifts are sure to be ill-intentioned.

haggle over every ounce – fuss over minor matters.

making a mountain out of the molehill – an idiom w/c referred to an over-reactive, histrionic behaviour or when a person makes too much of a minor issue


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