AM: Chapter 11

After dinner with his parents, Cheng Xia returned to the bedroom and closed the door. Then he quickly typed out a paragraph and sent it to Pei Shaoze. [President Pei, I’m sorry. Just now, my father asked me about the origin of the down jacket and I pretended to borrow it from a school senior. My father has a heart disease and I don’t want to tell him about what happened that night. Don’t be angry!]

Cheng Yiming was an upright person. In the original novel, he was insulted by netizens and saw Cheng Xia’s nude photos. He was so angry that he died of a heart attack and Cheng Xia completely blackened. It could be seen that the father and son had a very good relationship. Cheng Xia was worried about his father and it was reasonable to make up excuses.

Pei Shaoze naturally wouldn’t be angry and he typed back. [It doesn’t matter. Have you finished your exams?]

[Yes, I just finished my exams yesterday.]

[If you have time tomorrow, come to the company to sign the contract. The new agent I arranged for you is Zhou Yan. She is a female beta who is easy to get along well with.] Pei Shaoze finished this sentence and added, [Also, I am the leader of Group C. After signing the contract, come to my office with your agent to find me. We will talk about your future development direction.]

How many points would be deducted this time? Would Cheng Xia be frightened after hearing he was the group leader? Pei Shaoze waited a moment…

There was no notification about a deduction of the good impression points. Instead, he received Cheng Xia’s reply. [I know. Thank you, President Pei!]

Pei Shaoze, “?”

No deduction? Pei Shaoze frowned and asked in his mind, “System, how is the good impression calculated?”

The dormant System 1022 was awakened and yawned. [If there are positive emotions such as trust, gratitude or affection then it will increase your good impression. If there are negative emotions such as fear, doubt or jealousy then it will deduct points from your good impression.]

Negative emotions such as doubt and fear would also deduct points? No wonder why Cheng Xia’s previous good impression level kept jumping repeatedly. Pei Shaoze finally understood the reason. For a person like Cheng Xia with a lot of imagination, it was better to be as clear about things as possible.

Pei Shaoze picked up his phone and patiently sent an explanation to Cheng Xia. [The grouping of artists is the decision of the company’s management. Putting you in Group C isn’t because I have an opinion of you. I have found out that what happened that night was Zhao Wenxiu’s trick. It has nothing to do with you so don’t worry and work hard with your new agent in the future.]

Cheng Xia saw this message and the heart that had been stuck in his throat for several days finally fell. He excitedly held his phone and rolled around on the bed. Then he quickly typed his reply, [Thank you President Pei, I will definitely work hard!!]

There were two exclamation points. Then a notification popped up in Pei Shaoze’s mind again.

[Cheng Xia’s good impression of you +10.]

Sure enough, don’t let him make things up.

Pei Shaoze was in a happy mood as he put down his phone. Then he used the landline on the desk to call the general manager of the copyrights department. “Director Zhu, please send the information I want to my office as soon as possible.”

Some time later, the glasses wearing Director Zhu held a large stack of folders and knocked on the office door. He walked over to Pei Shaoze and spoke with a serious expression, “President Pei, I asked my colleagues in the copyrights team to work overtime to sort out the content outline and character biographies of all novels whose copyright is still within the company. This is the sorted information so please go through it.”

Pei Shaoze motioned for him to put the information on the table. Then he looked up and said, “Very good. Thank you for the hard work. I will read it carefully, select the appropriate book and contact you before setting up the project.”

“Okay President Pei. You are busy so I’ll go first.” Director Zhu turned and left the office.

Every year, the copyrights department of the Tianxuan Group would purchase the copyrights of some novels suitable to be adapted to a movie or drama. Regardless of whether it was filmed or not, first buy the copyright and set it aside. If a certain theme suddenly became popular then they could make a lot of money by setting up a project and filming it.

The easiest way to promote a newcomer was to choose a suitable book from the books the company had already purchased and invest directly in the filming. First, the copyrights were with Tianxuan and Tianxuan would decide who would play the leading role. Secondly, Cheng Xia was now an artist in Group C. Pei Shaoze could decide how much to invest and who he wanted to direct without going through tedious meetings and discussions. He could make the final decision.

Director Zhu was very efficient. He had carefully compiled a catalog and sorted out all the documents for the boss to check. Pei Shaoze inwardly praised it and started to look it up according to the catalog number.

Cheng Xia had just turned 18 and still had the spirit of a young student. Naturally, the protagonist of a youth school drama was the most suitable role for such a newcomer. There were several school novels among the ones bought by the copyrights department. Pei Shaoze quickly read the plot summaries and eliminated some that didn’t conform to Cheng Xia’s personality or had a dog-blood sadomasochism plot. Finally, he selected a school novel.

Cheng Xia’s current acting skills were still a bit immature and he couldn’t handle too complicated roles. Starting from a simple script would be more secure. This school novel didn’t have too much heart-breaking sadomasochism. Overall, it had a relaxed and funny ‘happy friends’ atmosphere. The most important thing was that the protagonist’s sunny and cheerful personality fit Cheng Xia’s personality. As long as it was shot well, Cheng Xia would definitely become a bit popular.

Pei Shaoze placed the folder aside. He had a headache from reading too much information so he closed his eyes and leaned against his chair to rest for a while. Pei Shaoze was still closing his eyes and resting when Zhang Fan came in with coffee.

President Pei had been working overtime in the company these days. Previously, Zhang Fan wouldn’t have imagined Pei Shaoze staying in the office for such a long time to process documents. In the past, Pei Shaoze often went to the club High with a few buddies at night and then slept until noon. Day and night were reversed and he looked impatient at the mention of the company.

Today’s Pei Shaoze…

He was like a changed person. It wasn’t just Zhang Fan. Many employees of the company, especially those in Group C, had this feeling. President Pei had a strict attitude at work but he was simple and straightforward. He didn’t speak nonsense and he arranged things in an orderly manner. There were so many agents being regrouped but he made the situation clear in just one week.

Was he stimulated by something?

Zhang Fan was wondering this when Pei Shaoze opened his eyes. The man’s eyes were cold and deep. Zhang Fan saw a miniature version of himself in this person’s eyes and it felt like the other person could see through him with one glance.

Zhang Fan’s back felt cold and he immediately handed over the coffee. “President Pei, your coffee…”

“Yes.” Pei Shaoze picked up the coffee, took two sips casually and placed it back on the table. Then he asked in a pretend casual manner, “Do you think I’ve changed a lot recently?”

Zhang Fan was seen through. His heart tensed and he barely squeezed out a smile as he cautiously replied, “You do… the changes are quite big. I remember that you rarely came to the company previously and you weren’t very interested in Tianxuan’s matters.”

Pei Shaoze answered indifferently, “My father was diagnosed with early gastric cancer last year. Although he had surgery and his life was saved, his health isn’t as good as before. As his son, I should also take responsibility.”

This was the most suitable reason Pei Shaoze found for the ‘changes.’ It would prevent the company’s employees from being suspicious every day. Of course, this was also what he thought. His father was still ill. As the eldest son of the Pei family, it was too wasteful to watch his father’s hard work fall into the hands of others. He wouldn’t let that happen.

Zhang Fan heard this calm voice and nodded in a complicated manner. “President Pei, it is great that you think this way. The chairman will definitely be very pleased to see that you have arranged the affairs of Group C so soon.”

[Zhang Fan’s good impression of you +5.]

Pei Shaoze looked at Zhang Fan and his tone became milder. “Xiao Zhang, you have been working hard these days. A newcomer called Cheng Xia in Group C will come to the company to sign the contract tomorrow. Go to the legal department and ask the legal department to explain the details of the contract to him. Then take him to my office to see me after the contract is signed.”

Zhang Fan immediately nodded. “Yes, I’ll arrange it.”

After Zhang Fan left, Pei Shaoze once again opened the system menu.

Cheng Xia’s good impression had risen to 40 and his agent had become Zhou Yan. Zhang Fan’s good impression rose from 60 to 65. Lin Qianshu’s was deducted and fell from 75 to 70. Zhao Wenxiu’s good impression was -100.

In addition, new names such as Zhou Yan, Cui Jue, Yang Mingwei, Zhu Jianan and Xu Xin appeared on the list. Any person who had contact with him in the past few days except for his parents all appeared on the list.

Vice-president Cui’s good impression of him was 0 while Vice-president Yang’s one was 50. Both were in the failure area.

Zhu Jianan and Xin Xu were two mid-level managers. They might’ve been forced to work overtime to sort out the copyright materials and re-modify the contracts but their good impression was 60. This showed that they were serious and responsible regarding their work and wouldn’t bring personal emotions into it.

Pei Shaoze looked at the list thoughtfully.

Good impression affected the attitude of supporting actors toward him. People with a high good impression were more likely to listen to him and act attentively. When necessary, he needed to increase the good impression of some supporting actors to help Cheng Xia. After all, he couldn’t make Cheng Xia famous on his own.

***

At the same time, a residential building in Qingtang District.

Cheng Xia was searching through his closest. The movements were so loud that it disturbed his mother Jiang Qiong. Jiang Qiong knocked on the door and looked in the direction of the closest in a puzzled manner. “What are you looking for? I thought there was a mouse in the house.”

Cheng Xia was crouched down in front of his closet, a trace of anxiety in his voice. “Mom, where is my camel cashmere sweater? Why can’t I find it?”

“You mean the one you bought last month?” Jiang Qiong went into the bedroom and opened a storage compartment in the closet. “I put it in here. If you want to wear it then I’ll iron it for you.”

“Great, I’ll wear it tomorrow!”

“Are you going out tomorrow?” Jiang Qiong took out the sweater and looked at him gently.

Cheng Xia excitedly explained, “I’m going to the company tomorrow to sign a supplementary contract. I also have to meet the boss so shouldn’t I make a good impression on the boss? It is winter and wearing a simple cashmere sweater shouldn’t go wrong, don’t you think?”

Jiang Qiong agreed. “Yes. I’ll pick a pair of pants for you.” She found a pair of black jeans in the closet then placed the camel sweater over Cheng Xia’s body. “Yes, you look very handsome like this.”

Cheng Xia just wanted to talk when his phone rang. He answered the phone and an unfamiliar female voice entered his ears. “Hello, is this Cheng Xia?”

“Yes.” Cheng Xia politely asked, “You are?”

“I’m your agent Zhou Yan. You can call me Sister Yan.” Zhou Yan’s tone was quite gentle. “I’m sorry, there have been internal adjustments in the company these days. The agents department has been doing handover work and it is finally confirmed today. President Pei has arranged for me to take care of you. You can always find me if you have any questions in the future.”

Compared with Zhao Wenxiu’s loftiness, Zhou Yan’s gentle voice and neat way of speaking made Cheng Xia feel appreciation. He politely asked, “Sister Yan, if I come to the company to sign the contract tomorrow, do I go directly to the legal department?”

“Call me when you arrive tomorrow and I will go downstairs to pick you up.” Zhou Yan paused before adding, “If you have any dissatisfaction with the contract then tell me and I will help you talk to the legal department. In the new version of the contract, some flexible clauses can be modified.”

Last time when Zhao Wenxiu took him to sign the contract, he saw Cheng Xia flipping through each page and became impatient. “You are just a newcomer. The company’s contracts for newcomers all have a unified template. What is the point of looking! Sign it quickly!”

Now Zhou Yan’s words made Cheng Xia’s heart feel warm. Switching to another agent was really much better.

Cheng Xia spoke seriously, “Thank you Sister Yan. I will come to the company tomorrow morning to find you. Is it convenient to add your WeChat?”

Zhou Yan told him, “Yes, I will add you. Remember to bring your ID card. I’ll see you tomorrow.”


Proofreader: Cat

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