The dazzling sunlight sneaked in through the gaps in the curtains, slid across the floor and touched the bed. The golden rays crawled over the soft and fluffy quilt, gently kissed the owner’s collarbone, chin, bridge of nose, and finally landed on the eyelids.
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The dazzling sunlight flickered over his eyes. Very annoying!
The sleeping person closed his eyes tightly in an unhappy manner. The thick eyelashes were like butterfly wings trembling, casting two fan-shaped shadows under the eyelids. He fumbled and grabbed the quilt and pulled it up over his head, curling up into a ball under the quilt as he turned over and continued to sleep. Suddenly a noisy knocking sounded from the door, followed by the doorbell which went “Ding Dong Ding Dong”.
How could there be a two-pronged attack!
“Wu!” Tao Mu unconsciously uttered a small puppy dog whine from his throat and opened his eyes in a daze. The ceiling above his head and the slightly unfamiliar furnishings in the room confused him for a moment. Immediately after the return of awareness, Tao Mu sat up still hugging the quit and the memory of last night slowly returned.
The ringing of the doorbell went “Ding Dong Ding Dong” several more times before Tao Mu slowly got up and went to open the door.
Early in the morning, Song Daozhen rolled out the wonton wrappers in the back kitchen and personally wrapped more than fifty small wontons filled with green onions and pork, Tao Mu’s favorite, and then carried a bag of seaweed, a bag of mustard greens, a handful of coriander and a bag of dried shrimp as he took the two mile walk to Tao Mu’s apartment. Song Daozhen stared at Tao Mu, who looked asleep on his feet, half of his face covered in red sleep marks. He couldn’t help but nag: “Why haven’t you gotten up yet? Don’t you have to report to school this morning? It’s already past seven o’clock, why aren’t you up. Did you stay up late to play on the computer last night? You say, it’s a good thing that I stopped by. Otherwise, with no one to wake you, you wouldn’t have even noticed that you slept past the time. You say, kids nowadays, ah, why act like night owls! Not sleeping at night, and not getting up in the morning. Don’t you know that going to bed early and getting up early is good for your health! Staying up so late every day sooner or later your body will break down…..”
Listening to old man Song’s nagging, Tao Mu stretched out his hand to scratch his messy hair, narrowed his big eyes into a seam and leaned against the kitchen, “….I wasn’t playing on the computer. I was doing real business matters….. The opening time of the stock market in China and the international oil futures market is at that point, what can I do? It’s not like I can have a big organization change their times for me alone? Just so I can go to bed early and get up early? It can’t be!”
“Don’t talk back with this kind of useless stuff!” Song Daozhen gave Tao Mu an irritated glare and carried the ingredients into the kitchen. Seeing Tao Mu following behind him like a small tail and still in a daze, old man Song was actually very happy inside. But on the surface he put up a stern face and lectured, “Hurry up and wash your face. You move quickly, don’t dawdle, or else the small wontons will go soggy.”
Tao Mu let out a soft “Uh”, sniffed hard, and asked his old man: “Did you bring me two flatbread? I want to eat the flatbread you make. I want salted flatbread, but mung bean and white sugar is also not bad.”
“You sure have a lot of requests. If you want to eat, go make it yourself. Didn’t I teach you?” Song Daozhen snorted. Speaking of this, he was reminded that Tao Mu had applied to Beijing Film, and suddenly became angry: “…..Not learning perfectly good craftsmanship, but insisting on studying such a damn major. You say, just how many people in China want to become celebrities? Besides, is it a long-term plan to make a living with your face? The way I see it, you kid just learned badly from that group of “Night” people. Every day thinking about getting something for nothing…..”
Tao Mu covered his head and rushed into the bathroom. After washing, he finally felt more awake.
“I say, old man, how did you come over from the restaurant?”
“Cycling along the main road. Just take it as exercise!” Song Daozhen said as he turned on the stove neatly, throwing the little wontons into the boiling pot. After a while, a cloud of steam wafted out of the kitchen, and the small apartment of less than 40 square meters was suddenly filled with the fresh fragrance of small wontons.
But Tao Mu was shocked into a cold sweat: “You just cycled here? That is not good! There are so many cars coming and going! You can’t be like this in the future. It’s too dangerous——”
Tao Mu was about to say that when he got a driver’s license and then bought a car, he would do the picking up. Only to see old man Song stubbornly glare at Tao Mu and ask stiffly: “Why, you dislike me? You don’t want me to come over?”
“How can that be!” Tao Mu sneaked into the kitchen, stood behind the old man with an ingratiating smile, and massaged his shoulders: “I’m just worried about your safety! You wait for me to get a driver’s license and a car. I will pick you up every day to come here.”
“Your words are pretty. But when you go to college and meet new friends, you would be too busy playing around. Would you still even remember me?” Song Daozhen snorted again, but the more he talked the more sad he became.
This stinky boy went to H Town for more than two months and only called him that one time. After that, there was no hearing from him at all. And he even specially set up a landline, only to just get takeout calls.
“No way.” Tao Mu smiled and hugged his old man’s small and thin body, and patiently coaxed: “I will pick you up at least twice every week in the future. Let you inspect whether this houseguest of yours has kept the house clean or not. I will also go back to the orphanage to visit dean Tao on the weekends. At that time I will make good food for you and let you taste my craft.”
“Your words are pretty.” Though Song Daozhen continued to voice his disbelief, he was quite happy in his heart. As the saying went, old children, old children, whether old people or children, one must coax them like this.
“That won’t work either.” Song Daozhen waved his hand and motioned Tao Mu to take out the cooked small wontons. He began to nag again: “Aren’t you trading stocks every day? You have to stay up until midnight every night, and feel sleepy during the day. How will you drive? I say, you’d better watch yourself, don’t get into a car accident because of fatigue. Although the 2nd Ring Road and the 3rd Ring Road have traffic jams every day, you can’t ruin other people’s cars like that. If you really clip someone else’s car, aside from the compensation money, people will think you had run out to the main road to play bumper cars!”
“Don’t go shaming us capital people!”
Just look at what this old man said, downright mean he was.
Tao Mu served the old man a bowl of small wontons and said with a smile, “I say old man——”
But before the words were finished, the doorbell rang once again.
Tao Mu put down the spoon and went to open the door. This time, Liu Yao and Meng Qi were the ones who showed up. They also carried three bowls of egg and lean meat porridge and two boxes of steamed buns. It was clearly bought at the breakfast shop at the gate of the community.
“Oh ho, old man, you are sure early! If we knew you were coming too, we could have given you a ride as well. All those cars coming and going, it’ll be bad if it clipped or bumped you.” Liu Yao opened his mouth and said the exact same thing as Tao Mu.
Song Daozhen had just finished retorting at Tao Mu, and now switched his next target to boss Liu. He snorted: “No need. I’m fine riding a bike by myself. It’s good to move my muscles and bones once in a while. And it won’t trouble anyone either. My old bones have not reached the point I can’t even move by myself yet.”
“That’s not what I meant. Ai, how come you are always so contrary!” As Liu Yao sooke, his eyes swept over the two steaming bowls of small wontons on the small table, and instantly felt a craving——
To say that the old man surnamed Song had a bad temper was an understatement. But his cooking skills were truly superb. Both taste and smell were without criticism.
Tao Mu laughed. He went to the kitchen to get two more bowls, and ladled out a bowl of wontons for brother Yao and brother Xiao Qi: “Wontons with steamed buns are just right.”
The old man snorted. In his heart he grumbled that his wonton was originally just right. Now there were two extra people. So of course it needed to be eaten with buns to be enough!
But how could this steamed bun and wonton go together exactly? These two things obviously didn’t go together! The old man grumbled to himself, his wonton was a perfect match with his flatbread. Wonton with steamed buns were at best passable!
Sure enough, no wonder he ran a nightclub as he didn’t even know how to eat.
The four people ate their improvised breakfast. During breakfast, the old man remembered something and reminded Tao Mu: “When you are free, let’s go to the vegetable market together. This house has just been renovated. I didn’t stock up any food so the kitchen is completely empty. Later, let’s go to the market to get a bag of rice and a bag of flour. Chicken, duck or fish, we should also buy some. I’ll make you some buns, wontons, glutinous rice balls, and dumplings at home. You can eat them when you are hungry.”
In fact, Song Daozhen originally wanted to cook wonton in his own small restaurant. But he was old now and couldn’t carry it all. And it was also not convenient. It was better to cook it here and freeze it directly in the refrigerator. Tao Mu could then eat it whenever he wanted.
Liu Yao listened to Song Daozhen’s words and swallowed subconsciously. He said: “This is rice and flour which are all heavy things. It will be inconvenient for you two old and young ones. How about this, Meng Qi and I will drive you there, and then take you back. I’ll find two guys to help carry the things upstairs directly.”
Song Daozhen originally wanted to say that he also had workers in the restaurant, but he didn’t have a car. Besides, there were Tao Mu’s feelings to be taken into account!
This stinky boy was looking at him eagerly, and it was obvious that he wanted to let brother Yao and brother Xiao Qi go to the vegetable market together.
Don’t know what kind of stinky habits he learned in H Town! This time he was back, he seemed to be more clingy than before! Not only did he learn to be clingy, but also learn to behave like a baby. Always looking at you eagerly, and using a soft voice to coax you. One couldn’t disagree with him even if they wanted to!
“If you want to go, go!” Song Daozhen snorted: “Someone is willing to work for free, what do I have to complain about.”
Tao Mu laughed: “Then after I report to school, let’s go to the vegetable market.”
Liu Yao and Meng Qi rarely got up early, but they especially did so just to send Tao Mu to the school to report in. The two grown men went home yesterday and thought about the fact that the child finally went to college, and when he went to report, like all children he likely wanted all his family to accompany him. What father, mother, grandpa, grandma, aunts, and uncles!
Although their Xiao Mu did not have parents, they couldn’t not treat this kind of thing seriously. So Liu Yao and Meng Qi rushed over early to support Tao Mu.
Song Daozhen thought the same thing.
And these three men were not the only ones who had this idea. After they finished their breakfast, they waited patiently as Tao Mu spent more than an hour dressing himself, before strolling to the gate of Beijing Film. There, they saw dean Tao leading little Feng Yuan, as well as Da Mao and Xiao Pang with their respective parents.
Seeing Tao Mu coming over, the large group of people surrounded him: “How come you only arrive now? Why aren’t you more excited, this is Beijing Film! There are countless handsome men and beautiful women, and there are endless celebrities inside. You don’t want to see your celebrity classmates?”
Tao Mu looked at Da Mao and Xiao Pang in surprise: “Why are you guys here?”
Then he greeted their parents: “Hello, uncles and aunts.”
“Xiao Mu is really becoming more and more handsome.” The two uncles and aunts looked at Tao Mu’s increasingly handsome face and more and more refined dress, and couldn’t help but praise: “Just like a big superstar.”
They were not just being polite. After Tao Mu was reborn, his fashion philosophy and dressing style would naturally be affected by the fashion ethos ten years later. And he had been among the top of the pyramid in the entertainment industry in his previous life. He had his own agency team and makeup team. And after returning to the Shen family, he also deliberately learned the etiquette of the upper class. Therefore, his dressing style was more refined, his speech was more elegant, and his manners were more perfect.
Coupled with the invisible and intangible but definitely present aura that had been accumulated over the past ten years, Tao Mu stood out from his peers without a question. Just standing there with a gentle smile could cause people around him to look over involuntarily. It was as if he glowed all over.
A media reporter squatting at the gate of Beijing Film squeezed over with a camera and microphone, and wanted to interview Tao Mu.
Tao Mu avoided the reporter with disinterest.
Mr. Wang, the coal boss, was thinking about another thing: “Xiao Mu, when do you have time to have a chat with your uncle.” He mainly wanted to ask Tao Mu whether shorting the international oil futures was really reliable or not. If it really was reliable he would be getting his money ready!
Tao Mu smiled and said, “No problem.”
Boss Wang was still a little worried: “I say Xiao Mu. How sure do you feel——”
Before he finished speaking, Da Mao pulled his dad impatiently: “Aiya, it’s just some boring stuff, you have no end to it, seriously! Let’s hurry up and go report in. You guys aren’t anxious, but I want to see the big stars.”
Besides the big stars, there were also beautiful girls. Da Mao had applied for the architecture department of a local polytechnic university. So one could imagine the lack of quality and quantity of the girls in his own school. Xiao Pang’s situation was basically the same as that of Da Mao. The two brothers in hardship were counting on finding their first love in Tao Mu’s university!
Tao Mu laughed when he heard these words, practically being pushed into the school all the way by these two childhood friends.
Little Feng Yuan stood behind, because he needed to support dean Tao, so he could only stare at the backs of the three anxiously and grumble: “What are you pushing, pushing for! Not, not at all mature and lose, lose, losing brother Mu Mu Mu’s face!”
Dean Tao smiled and rubbed Feng Yuan’s prickly hair: “You can go ahead too.”
Feng Yuan thought for a while, and shook his head: “No, no. I want to accompany, accompany, accompany dean Tao.” There were too many people in the school, practically rubbing shoulder to shoulder. He was afraid their dean would get hit or pushed.
On the other side, Da Mao and Xiao Pang looked at the bustling Beijing Film classmates around them, their two eyes practically not enough to see everything. No wonder it was Beijing Film, the cradle of Chinese actors. All the students have high physical appearance points. The guys’ facial features were well-defined and appearance dignified. Not to mention the girls, either with long, fluttering hair and the picture of one’s first love goddess, or with short hair that appeared neat and confident. There were also gentle and feminine, or glamorous and charming, or cute and lively, or pure and lovely…..just any one of them would be the number one school beauty level when put in other schools.
“Can’t take it! Can’t take it! I’m going to die! I say, brother Mu, I will come to your school to see you every week from now on? It would be great if you could introduce me to a girl anytime!”
Compared with Da Mao’s confidence, Xiao Pang was worried: “What should I do? I think these girls wouldn’t like me at all. Should I lose weight?”
Da Mao, who had a mine at home, glanced at the same round facial features on Xiao Pang’s round face, and said sincerely: “I think the girls don’t like you not only because you are fat but also because you are not handsome.”
If you were handsome, even fat people could find a girlfriend.
Xiao Pang’s face changed, his white melon face instantly became a dark melon face!
How could he land such a blow on people! He’ll seriously turn his face!
Tao Mu couldn’t help but chuckle, and was about to speak when the sophomore elder school sisters who were in charge of welcoming the new students gathered around him. With bright eyes, they asked: “Classmate, are you here to report in too?”
“Classmate, are you from the acting department?”
“What’s your name, classmate?”
“Classmate, I will accompany you to report in. I belong to the student council. You can go with me, so you don’t need to line up.”
Da Mao and Xiao Pang who had been standing on both sides of Tao Mu were suddenly squeezed away by a group of girls. The two looked at the beautiful elder school sisters who surrounded Tao Mu in the middle, chirping like birds, and suddenly had the urge to have a heart attack.
How did the saying go, comparing yourself with other people would only vex you to death? This was a live comparison site! These girls were too superficial, right? How could they be captured by brother Mu’s face so easily? Couldn’t they patiently and carefully observe their beautiful inner beauty?
Although I am fat (ugly), I am very gentle (rich)!
Unlike Da Mao and Xiao Pang’s heart attack, Liu Yao, Meng Qi, old man Song, and dean Tao looked proudly at their puppy surrounded by a group of female classmates. Little Feng Yuan sighed with pride on the side: “No, no, no wonder it’s my brother Mu Mu, he’s just, just so attractive.”
Tao Mu was surrounded by a large group of enthusiastic school sisters, and their hospitality was hard to rebuff. The end result was that he, who had arrived much later, actually got his dorm key faster than those classmates who came to report early in the morning.
Little Feng Yuan, Da Mao and Xiao Pang helped Tao Mu carry all of the school issued blankets, washbasin and thermos all the way into dormitory 301. When they arrived there was already a classmate in the room.
Their large group arrived with quite a bit of fanfare, immediately filling the small bedroom. The three people who had been cleaning up were instantly startled.
“Hello, my name is Tao Mu. We will be roommates living together for the next four years, so please take care of me.” In front of outsiders, Tao Mu always greeted that person first.
“Hello, uncle and aunt.”
“Ai, ai, hello classmate.” Mother Chu, who was making the bed for her son in the upper bunk, smiled cautiously. There was no other reason, but Tao Mu’s aura was just too strong——putting aside other things for now, just that appearance, that temperament, that speech and manners, that posture of wearing sportswear and carrying a thermos and yet looking like he could immediately walk the red carpet——it really caused these two parents to be short of breath.
Standing in the middle of the room, father Chu, who was holding a rag to wipe the bookshelf and desk, pointed to his son: “This is my son Chu Sui’an. Xiao An, say hello to others!”
“Hello.” He was 1.8 meters tall, with delicate facial features that seem a little feminine. The handsome boy with a melancholic aura smiled shyly at Tao Mu: “I am Chu Sui’an. A native of Shanghai.”
The future Golden Lily TV emperor! Chu Sui’an, who was praised by the media as a model of a good-natured and economically down to earth man one wanted to marry the most!
Tao Mu’s mouth formed a perfect arc. It seemed that he was quite lucky: “I am a local of Beijing. My home is nearby. When everyone is settled, I’ll treat you all to eat something delicious. I hope you’ll like our old Beijing’s instant boiled mutton.”
Chu Sui’an smiled shyly: “I especially like this type of food.” After a pause, he felt that he was not too polite, and so he once again shyly smiled at Tao Mu and thanked him in a low voice.
Tao Mu’s eyebrows curved into a smile, and he waved his hand carelessly: “You’re welcome.” Of course, he knew that Chu Sui’an liked this. In fact, this kid had revealed it to reporters himself during a media interview in his previous life. In addition, during the years when Chu Sui’an settled in Beijing, he was indeed photographed many times by media reporters eating this hotpot dish with his friends.
Feeling Tao Mu’s enthusiasm, Chu Sui’an smiled shyly again. He was actually a person who didn’t talk very much. Before he came over, his parents were still worrying about their son’s wooden character and just how he would communicate with his classmates. But seeing Tao Mu now, the old couple felt more relieved.
No matter how the other two roommates in the dormitory were, at least Tao Mu was very easy-going and easy to communicate.
Mother Chu looked at the large group of people behind Tao Mu with some curiosity, and then questioned: “Student Tao Mu, are these all your family members?”
Tao Mu suddenly smiled as bright as the shining sun: “En~ These are my grandparents, these two are my older brothers, this is my little brother, and these two are my childhood friends and their parents. They are all here to send me off to school.”
Song Daozhen puffed out his chest with joy when he heard Tao Mu call him grandpa to outsiders. Dean Tao also looked at Tao Mu lovingly.
The educational environment of the orphanage was not as good as that of ordinary people, and there were only a handful of children who could enter the university. More people left school after completing nine years of compulsory education and wanted to work to support themselves. So dean Tao had rarely sent her children to college in these many years. Now that Tao Mu was doing so well for himself, she was also happy for her child.
In contrast, Liu Yao frowned a little——not satisfied with Tao Mu’s introduction. He felt that he should get the role of father. Why did the little puppy introduce him to outsiders as his elder brother! Even the stubborn old man with a bad temper got to be grandpa. Even if he couldn’t get to be dad, he should at least get to be godfather, right?
Meng Qi squeezed boss Liu’s palm while people were not paying attention, and glanced at old man Song again. His meaning was that it was not bad being introduced like this, lest brother Yao, who had quite the standing in jianghu, suddenly and inexplicably become reduced to being a younger generation of the old man for a lifetime. Liu Yao thought about it and agreed, but then when he thought about it again——damn, I didn’t even squeeze into the uncle generation, just directly pulled into the grandchildren generation by the little puppy!
Who was grandpa! Who was the grandson! Was there such a way of deciding seniority? So it seemed that no matter how he was ranked, he was still at a lower generation?
Boss Liu glared and was about to explode. Meng Qi squeezed the palm of his hand several times while others were not paying attention, and immediately calmed him down.
Little Feng Yuan supported dean Tao and was giggling secretly to himself. He also felt that he was his brother Mu’s younger brother, more closer than real blood brothers. Now it had been officially stamped, and he couldn’t be more satisfied.
Mother Chu said with a look of envy, “It’s good to have a local home. When sending children to report to school many people can also come over. Unlike our family, it’s just me and his dad accompanying him. His grandparents are very anxious at home. And oh, say, when a southerner like us goes to the north, the food and the environment, how can he get used to it! If you ask me he should have just applied for the Shanghai Theater Academy in the first place. Aren’t they all film schools just how different could it be. There are also many stars from Shanghai Theatre Academy——”
“Mom!” Chu Sui’an interrupted mother Chu’s words unhappily, and subconsciously said in Shanghai dialect: “Don’t say anything if you don’t know. I want to be an actor, not a star. Just…..”
Chu Sui’an didn’t finish speaking, immediately realizing that he shouldn’t speak his native dialect in front of outsiders. It was impolite. Subconsciously he spoke the official dialect: “Anyway, I just want to go to Beijing Film.”
“Okay, okay, I won’t say anymore. Aiyo, this kid is all grown up, he doesn’t like to listen to adults anymore.” Mother Chu looked at the ladies in the room and complained with a smile.
“Isn’t that true!” Da Mao and Xiao Pang’s mothers also echoed. So, the few middle-aged women got together and began to chat with each other.
Tao Mu went to his bed and laid out the bedding. He was a guy who was accustomed to work, so his movements were quick and handsome. After just a short while, he had cleaned up all his bed cabinets. Chu Sui’an watched Tao Mu eagerly, thinking about how to strike up a new conversation. Suddenly, they heard a noise outside——the other two roommates had arrived.
“Oh my god, I’m exhausted! I’m all sweaty——why are there so many people!”
Following the loud voice from outside, a boy with a height of over 1.9 meters and thick eyebrows walked in: “Is this 301?”
“Yes.” Tao Mu looked at this newcomer who brought his comedy buff as soon as he appeared, and introduced himself with a smile: “I am Tao Mu.”
“I’m Du Kang. From the poem written by Cao Cao, ‘how can I be free from sorrow? Only by Du Kang’s wine’. (TN: Du Kang was a legendary inventor of wine and Cao Cao was a famous statesman and general at the end of Han as well as noted poet and calligrapher, later warlord, founder and first king of Cao Wei). The big guy pointed to himself, “I am from the northeast. This is also our roommate, called Wen Bao.”
As Du Kang spoke, he pulled out from behind a boy who was about 1.75 meters tall and had an amiable handsomeness with a pair of smiling eyes.
The boy curved his eyebrows in a smile at everyone, looking very much like a cat who stole the fish: “Hello everyone, I am Wen Bao from Beijing. It’s almost noon so how about I treat everyone to lunch? Our Beijing specialty, instant boiled mutton, how about it?”
You c an fi nd t he la te st cha pte rs at ( th e ir on tr ee bl oo ms. c o m )
Tao Mu was instantly amused. Counting him, among the four people in this dormitory, there was a Golden Lily TV emperor, a Golden Crow film emperor, a Golden Chime and Golden Crow double film emperor plus Golden Lily TV emperor, and a Golden Elephant Best Director.
——It was quite a complete set they had here.
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