Ch1 – Ningning, I finally found you
Ji Ning supported his chin with one hand and sat quietly by the window of the aircraft, watching the crew outside who were fixing the set for the upcoming movie.
The staff were very efficient and carefully positioned the large-scale equipment used for playing holographic images.
Soon this wasteland would take on a ghostly appearance, making the lonely old mansion appear even more formidable.
The other people in the aircraft, like Ji Ning, were all actors who would be participating in the filming.
Ji Ning was an elegant beauty.
The corners of his lips were naturally slightly raised, as if he were smiling at all times.
His skin was smooth and even, and he had attractive honey brown eyes.
His whole person normally carried a gentle temperament.
But currently, Ji Ning bore a blank expression in order to maintain his current persona.
Contrary to his gentle appearance, within the novel’s setting he was an arrogant and indifferent genius, who wouldn’t take the initiative to communicate with other people.
As an experienced transmigrator, Ji Ning couldn’t allow himself to make low-level errors that would violate the basic settings of the world.
Ji Ning remained silent as he looked covertly at a handsome man in the shadowy reflection of the window.
This man was the protagonist of the novel that Ji Ning had entered, the great actor Gu Chen.
This novel was called ‘Rebirth of the Interstellar Actor’ and was set in the future, interstellar era.
The main plot of the story details how the actor Gu Chen returned to the top of the entertainment world, surpassing the achievements of his previous life, after he was reborn a hundred years in the future.
At present, the plot of the original book has just begun, Gu Chen’s new identity was an eighteenth-tier star who had previously been blackened by the internet.
The film that is soon to start shooting is the first film he received after his rebirth, playing a supporting role, while Ji Ning played the lead role.
In the original work, Ji Ning played an antagonistic role to Gu Chen.
He was a genius newcomer movie star, who hid his identity as the prince of a well-known entertainment company and would deliberately provoke Gu Chen.
Although he was not a villain, the two of them acted as rivals; neither close, nor friendly.
Using such an identity, Ji Ning’s main task was to capture Gu Chen, and make Gu Chen fall in love with him.
Fortunately at this point, the original plotline had only just begun, and he and Gu Chen were still strangers.
But for Ji Ning, it wouldn’t matter even if Gu Chen had already hated him.
Before this task, he had already experienced ten worlds.
The main task of each world was to make the protagonist fall in love with him.
He has long become familiar with such things.
What’s more, compared with some of the perverted male protagonists he had encountered, Gu Chen’s character was almost normal and could even be seen as very cute!
Briefly recalling some past events, Ji Ning’s expression faintly twisted, but he quickly masked it.
Soon a knock came from the door of the aircraft, and a staff member came to inform them that the venue was set up and they were ready to begin filming.
Several people stood up and got ready, with Ji Ning at the forefront.
As soon as he stepped out of the thermoregulated aircraft, his hair was gently mussed by the wind outside, and his bare skin chilled.
The gloomy sky was densely covered with rolling dark clouds, appearing heavy and depressed.
However, both the gloomy sky and the cold temperature were only simulations created by holographic instruments.
They were aiming to shoot a horror film called “Ghost Mansion” as supernatural films were currently very popular.
If it was filmed well, it would naturally do well.
Moreover, this type of film was cheap to make and suitable for newcomer actors.
The investment in “Ghost Mansion” was considered to be in the upper-middle levels among supernatural type films.
The script was well written and the director reputable but the rest of the cast, except for Ji Ning, were newcomers with no background and wouldn’t normally have a chance to star in such a film.
But this was a film few actors were interested in.
Because the old mansion they planned to use during the filming was definitely a cursed house.
Years ago, an appalling murder case occurred within the old house.
A family of six died.
Their corpses were mutilated and dismembered, while the murderer committed suicide on the spot.
The murderer’s stomach was later found to contain chunks of the deceased’s flesh and hair.
It was never dicovered what the murderer’s motive was for killing the family and eating their corpses.
Most people suspected that the murderer held a blood feud against the family or that some wicked ritual was the cause of this tragedy.
It was for this reason that Gu Chen received this chance to film, and later used it to further his career.
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection.
If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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“This is the famous cursed house…”
Ji Ning and the staff walked towards the haunted house.
There was a sudden gust of cold wind through the leaves.
Some old wind chimes jingled, causing the actors to turn a little pale, murmuring together in low voices.
“You can all get adjusted to the set for a bit.
We will start shooting in fifteen minutes.
Please be prepared for then, thank you.”
The staff smiled at them and walked away, leaving the actors by the wicked looking mansion.
Several newcomers talked in low voices, discussing the homicides of that year.
Ji Ning folded his arms and said nothing, while Gu Chen was shunned due to the internet’s smear campaign against him and stood alone.
Ji Ning’s gaze swept over Gu Chen.
Even though he had been excluded, Gu Chen stayed composed, ignoring the other’s attitudes, and focusing on the old house.
After a while, Gu Chen called up a transparent light board from the mini terminal attached to his wrist, to show the internal structure of the old mansion.
His slender fingers danced across the light board, zooming in on particular rooms from time to time.
He appeared to be comparing the house’s blueprint with the content of the script.
As an actor, Gu Chen’s attitude towards filming was impeccably dedicated, similar to Ji Ning’s current persona.
Although he acted arrogant, he was extremely strict with himself and wouldn’t tolerate any mistakes.
So of course, Ji Ning also called up his own script from the terminal.
Using this as an opening, he was finally able to say his first words to Gu Chen.
“You’re not bad.”
Ji Ning walked to Gu Chen and spoke casually.
When Gu Chen raised his head at the sound of his voice, Ji Ning glanced at the other actors who were chatting, and spoke with deliberate sarcasm,
“At least much better than amateurs with careless attitudes.”
The others’ faces changed slightly when they heard this.
Of course, they had all worked hard on the script before they came here, but because of a little small talk they’d been labelled by Ji Ning as ‘careless’.
But as Ji Ning was their senior with a solid acting reputation, they dared to be angry but didn’t dare to speak, so they were forced to stop chatting and also stare at their scripts.
Ji Ning silently said sorry to them in his heart, but maintained an indifferent look on his face.
After all, he couldn’t break his character.
Gu Chen didn’t answer, but smiled at Ji Ning.
His face was handsome, with dark eyes and messy hair.
He appeared cold when he wasn’t smiling but had a gently charming appearance when he did.
Ji Ning did not speak further, returning a slight nod, he looked down at his script.
He had calculated a long strategy for capturing Gu Chen.
For now, it was enough to express his disdain towards the others for excluding Gu Chen and there was no need to do more.
Fifteen minutes passed quickly, and the countdown to shooting began.
Everyone closed their terminals and adjusted their facial expressions and emotional status.
The surrounding holographic projections began to change, simulating a forest scene.
Several crows flew by and a whistling sound rustled the leaves.
Not long after, several black feathers fell from the air.
The overall story of “Ghost Mansion” was good, but the setting at the beginning of the script was pretty clichéd: A group of adventurers lost their way in the forest.
After hearing a voice from a certain direction they rushed to follow it and entered the ghost house – sealing their fate!
Of course, in this day and age the existence of the central optical brain and terminals made the situation of ‘getting lost’ practically impossible.
Therefore, the film was set many years before the optical brain came out.
In the current optical brain era, although filming begins with a fixed script, the actors have a high degree of freedom during the actual shooting and can completely change the script if they feel it matches the flow of the plot.
Sometimes directors will change the script halfway through filming to allow actors to show their genuine emotions and reactions.
In these cases, the director’s instructions are relayed through invisible headsets worn by the actors and there are many hidden cameras throughout the set to ensure the actors can be filmed from all angles without missing any actions.
The director gave an order.
Ji Ning and the others quickly entered into a working headspace and began their performance.
According to the beginning of the script’s plot, they had lost their way before the film’s female lead heard the mysterious voice and dragged her friends through the woods towards the old house.
The mansion seemed gloomy.
Although everyone had differing opinions on whether to enter to try and find someone, the sky had begun to pour down with rain so those who had concerns could only compromise and follow along as they entered.
The rain was heavy, and Ji Ning, who played the male lead, walked in front to push the door of the house open.
The hinges gave a dry sound as they turned.
“No one lives here.
The house must be empty.” Said Gu Chen, glancing at the house’s furnishings.
There was a thick layer of dust covering everything and the glass of the windows were too dirty to see through.
The pitch darkness meant they had to turn on their flashlights.
“We’re probably going to spend the night here, so let’s do some cleaning first – let’s at least make a relatively clean area.” Said Ji Ning.
The others had no objection so they split up to clean but were interrupted by the cry of the heroine.
“What’s the matter?” Ji Ning asked.
“Look, this stain on the ground…” The actress playing the heroine showed an uneasy look, pointing to the floor beneath her feet.
Even though the dusk was heavy, it couldn’t cover the dark stain which appeared under the light of the flashlight.
Like blood stains.
Everyone stopped moving, their eyes fixed on the stain.
Ji Ning stepped forward solemnly, leaned over and touched the dark trace with his finger.
The moment his fingertips brushed the floor, although there was no wind, the layer of dust covering the ground seemed to slowly blow away, revealing the stain in its entirety.
It was a human figure.
Around it were movements as if it had been dragged, clusters of splattered blood and smaller droplets.
As more terrifying bloodstains appeared, the expressions of the group all changed.
Although they didn’t know what happened in this house, it was obvious they shouldn’t stay there for long!
Ji Ning picked up their things, stood up and ran towards the door.
They hadn’t fully closed the door when they entered, but no matter how Ji Ning pulled on the doorknob, the door wouldn’t move.
“The window won’t open…”
Someone rushed to the windows to push and pull, but it didn’t help.
Panicked, the group picked up heavy objects to try and hit the glass but froze at the sound of a sudden chuckle.
The ethereal laughter appeared out of nowhere and softly entered their ears, causing the hearts of those present to jump.
They were indeed frightened.
The script had mentioned there would be laughter at this time but it had definitely stated that it was a female voice.
The first ghost to appear was supposed to be the ghost of the previous homeowner, but now…it was clearly a man’s voice?
Did the director change the script?
Ji Ning also had the same question in his mind.
This was a change that hadn’t appeared in the original book, but his headset remained quiet and no new directions were given, so everyone continued to perform according to their original instructions.
Right after their panic at being trapped in the house, an old newspaper suddenly fell from above, landing in Ji Ning’s hands.
Ji Ning was slightly startled.
Holding this newspaper, the paper was already yellowed, stained with blood and the print was blurred.
Only an obituary in the middle remained clear.
A black and white photo of a young man with beautiful eyes.
He stared straight ahead, eyes curved in a smile that appeared naturally gentle and affectionate but as Ji Ning stared into his eyes he realised with horror that the man wasn’t looking at the camera but at the person holding the newspaper.
He was watching Ji Ning.
Ji Ning’s pupils shrank.
…Impossible, how could that person’s photo appear here?
Bright red blood dripped from the black and white photo of the obituary, coming from the front of the young man’s chest, staining his white shirt a scarlet colour.
As the man in the photo became soaked in blood he seemed to come alive little by little.
His expression gradually became bright and vivid as he raised his lips at Ji Ning, revealing a soft smile.
He said, “Ningning, I finally found you.”
The text of the obituary turned blood red, and a person’s name appeared faintly.
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