That outrageous remark left Lin Ruoxi and even Director Yu Shuo frozen stiff.
Lu Yao’s face darkened as she immediately put on the phoniest smile in existence. “Ms Lin Hui does have a melodious voice. I must admit that I am a big fan of hers. But I also must say that everyone brings their own distinct flair to their performances. For you to quickly denounce my song would be wildly misjudged, don’t you think? Besides, all we ever heard was Ms Lin Hui’s pre-recorded music in the studio. Who knows how she would really sound on a real stage.”
Lu Yao was frank with her statement, but after Yang Chen’s indifferent remark, it was not hard to comprehend.
Yang Chen casually brushed it off. “That’s true. But don’t be offended Ms Lu Yao. I am blunt and straightforward to a fault. If you don’t believe me, you can always turn to my wife. Isn’t that right, Ruoxi?”
“What?” Lin Ruoxi instantly snapped out of her position.
“About me being a straightforward guy.”
“Oh, right… Oh, what?!” Lin Ruoxi reactively sealed her lips as her face turned bright red, eager to flee from the scene right that instant!
What is this idiot talking about?! Wasn’t I reassuring the fact that Lu Yao is a worse singer than Hui Lin?!
Unsurprisingly, Lu Yao was already clenching her teeth and seething from her nose!
Director Yu Shuo who was paying close attention tried his best to contain his laughter before he sniffled. “You’re hilarious Mr Yang. Lu Yao here is a platinum artist and a box office queen. There is no question about the talent she possesses. We were just discussing if we should collaborate for my upcoming movie.”
Lin Ruoxi brilliantly adapted to the change of topics as she quickly added, “Can we expect an instant classic coming our way soon, Director Yu? Would you mind to share a sneak peek into your next venture?”
Director Yu smiled as he replied, “It’s not a mystery anymore at this point. What I have in mind is a mystical themed film focusing on China’s very own fantasy and mythologies. It would revolve around deities and vigilantes, something akin to the popular fantasy martial arts genre.”
Not too long ago, Lin Ruoxi would have no idea nor would she have any interest in fantasy and mythology.
But these days, after Yang Chen exposed her to the world of refining and cultivation, she had finally batted an eye on the vast expense of the martial arts world, which was why she was less surprised at the thought of the concept.
Yang Chen, however, bluntly replied, “Could it be about demons eyeing to feast on the classic monk Tang Sanzang? If that’s the case, I think Ms Lu Yao is a perfect fit, just like that spider demon from the Journey to the West saga!”
“Mr Yang could very much be praising my looks resembling that of a supernatural being, or that my personality reeks of a demon,” Lu Yao ominously rebuked.
Lin Ruoxi had been hinting Yang Chen with pinches on the back, each time harder than the last, stupefied at her husband’s petty feud against Lu Yao. She was sure that this was the first time they would meet.
Yang Chen burst into laughter. “Well for that, you have to go back and talk to your father figure, if he indeed has chosen you for the special something hiding within your core.”
His statement was as baffling as anyone would have expected.
Lu Yao’s pupils reactively dilated at his proclamation, as her face paled even further. “Well what a peculiar remark you just made, Mr Yang. I don’t think I understand any of it.”
Yang Chen vaguely grinned. “That’s fine, as long as I do.”
Lin Ruoxi and Director Yu Shuo were caught in the middle as they stared blankly at the other two.
Lu Yao was visibly shaken as she attempted a departure from the hostile party before a certain presence stopped by.
It was Zhao Hongyan alongside several Caucasians as they stopped before Lin Ruoxi.
Zhao Hongyan, as a member of the public relations department, had a rather good grasp of English as she seemed to get along well with the men and women dressed in rock-and-roll themed outfits.
“Ma’am.” Zhao Hongyan introduced with a smile, “This is the Irish band Cranberries who are currently on their world tour stop in Zhonghai. Their lead singer Ms Dolores wanted to express their gratitude towards our assistance for their tour in China and insisted on an audience with you.”
Before Lin Ruoxi could say her greetings, Lu Yao on the side started screaming like a fangirl.
“Oh my god! Ms Dolores and the Cranberries?!”
Lu Yao was rather shell-shocked as she engaged them in English. “Hi, let me introduce myself. I’m Lu Yao, and it’s a pleasure to meet with you guys.”
Ms Dolores, the woman with platinum blonde hair seemed to be rather taken aback by her outburst, but still kept her courtesy as she replied, “Nice to meet you. It’s our first visit to China so do forgive us if we aren’t too familiar with the people here.”
Lin Ruoxi never neglected her role as host as she instinctively started a simple round of introduction within the circle, including Lu Yao’s background, while also expressing her gratitude towards the Cranberries.
Even though Lin Ruoxi wasn’t too accustomed to their music, she would still instantly recognize a well-beloved rock band.
The Cranberries might not be universally renowned, but their talent and charisma on stage were well acknowledged by their fans.
And to collaborate with an international group of this caliber sure was the main aspirations of many in China. It would boost their international fanbase, which explained Lu Yao’s excessive reaction towards their surprise appearance.
Lu Yao seemed to have quickly wiped her mind clean of her previous fussing with Yang Chen as she giggled merrily whilst expressing her love of the Cranberries.
“Ms Dolores, you have no idea how much I love your music. I spent my college years listening to your music. Your lyrics truly get me. I was desperately trying to attend your concert here in Zhonghai but was devastated to find out that the tickets were all sold out,” said Lu Yao.
Ms Dolores and the other members were all smiles hearing from Lin Ruoxi that Lu Yao herself was also a well-off singer, and as formalities went they had to give her an adequate response.
“Ms Lu Yao, if you are looking forward to our concert, you can just drop by and we would have our organizers arrange a special seat for you. If we have the opportunity in the future it’d definitely be our pleasure to work with you. We never collaborated with anyone from China, and if there was gonna be a first we’d like it to be you,” Dolores replied.
Lu Yao gleefully added, “There’s this saying in China, to ‘seize the moment’, and since there are a crowd of musicians and investors here in attendance tonight, alongside a top-notch stage, it’d be of utmost pleasure if I could perform a song with you guys. Would you accept this as a request from your biggest fan?”
Anyone present knew right away what her motive was. Lu Yao was utilizing this opportunity to build a connection with the Cranberries. If the results turned out to be favorable, she could actually snag a collaboration with international megastars, propelling her to heights only dreamed of by some people.
Nonetheless, to evade any suspicion that she was manipulating the Cranberries as a jumping board, she had to first prove to a global audience that she was capable enough.
Dolores and the members went into discussion, and after a quick negotiation with their manager, they thought it was worth a go.
After all, Lu Yao has proven herself on the national stage and had already built a loyal following within the country. If they were to jointly perform on a Chinese stage, the prospect of gaining further coverage and supporters within China was a win-win situation.
They then turned towards Lin Ruoxi, the host herself to see if she could make it happen. Unsurprisingly, Lin Ruoxi welcomed the idea that the rare occasion the Cranberries were there in the country she managed to invite them to perform at her event. It was also a win in her books.
To invite international heavyweights to the event was one thing, but to host a performance was a whole new level of success.
To top it off, Lin Ruoxi even made Zhao Hongyan invite some of the better-behaved media personnel to enter the venue as a perfect opportunity for positive branding.
Swiftly after, Zhao Hongyan got the backstage crew to tune the sound system, before making an official statement that the Cranberries and Lu Yao were going to make a cross-border collaboration.
It didn’t take long before the crowd started cheering and applauding as they were filled with anticipation for the impromptu performance.
Lin Ruoxi efficiently made a series of arrangements. Right after, she turned irritably at Yang Chen before she ranted, “What are you up to again this time? Did you really have to pick a fight with her? I know she might not mean much to you and maybe she really wasn’t as good as Hui Lin, but you could’ve kept it to yourself. She has a reputation as well.”
Yang Chen curled his arms around her shoulder. “Relax, nothing will happen. The only reason for my reaction was because of my disgust for her…”
“Why?” Lin Ruoxi was intrigued.