Chapter 6:    The past

Translator: Aafkee

Proofreader: ChaiTea



Shen Yu probably knew of Zhong Simo’s name way earlier than anyone would have expected.
He had, somehow, passed the entrance exam and enrolled in the film and acting academy at the young age of 17.
He had merely followed the mainstream trends and took his classes when he had yet to figure out what he wanted to do in the future.
Until one film appreciation class, his tutor played a standalone film in class as an extracurricular activity.
The film, “Innocence”, told a story that had happened in a small, overcast, Western town.
The film began with a shot from dark to light, following and extending along a bumpy road, the camera shot paused on a pair of classic Nike sneakers.
A young teacher, who was involved in a program for bringing education to underdeveloped areas, dragged his three huge pieces of luggage out of the long-distance coach.
He was too distracted to be careful about his branded shoes being stepped on by the other passengers as he looked at his surroundings, and smiled so wide that it revealed at least eight of his teeth.
He arrived at this small town with his dreams and passions, emitting a brightness that was very inharmonious with his surrounding environment.
Soon, the young man settled down in the junior high school that he was in contact with in advance.
It was decided that he would teach Math to the third-year students here.
The students called him Mr Zhou.
They would sit around him and listen to his stories or learn to play basketball from him after school.
The young man felt that he was a successful teacher and that his decision to come was worth it.
Unfortunately, there was a reticent young lady in class who would not talk to him much, nor did she interact with her classmates.
The young man took it to heart.
When the young lady was handing in her work on her own, he unintentionally noticed the bruises on her arm, a sign of her being abused.
The kind young man did not make a scene out of it.
He decided to go to the young lady’s house and confirm the situation, but instead, he ran into a scene where the young lady’s stepfather was grabbing her hair and beating her non-stop.
The young man rushed inside, wanting to stop her stepfather, but the latter only became more and more vicious.
Just as the young man was about to be overpowered, in a moment of desperation, the young lady picked up the statue of a Buddha from the table and swung it down, a bright red streak of blood gave the small overcast town a smear of an ominous colour.
The sensation and shock that Shen Yu brought to the film were almost akin to the human feelings felt the first time they found out about how the Earth was actually not the centre of the universe.
He never thought a film could be expressed this way, never thought that it could be so preposterous yet real, nothing like a typical film where a group of good looking men and women wept endlessly on screen.
Even until the film had ended, when a rare snow fell along with the show curtain, Shen Yu was still drowning in the desperate atmosphere to which he could feel etched deep in his bones.
“There was no other way, Mr Zhou, hahaha, hahaha.” “This was your senior from the film directing faculty, Zhong Simo’s first work.
It was aired not long ago and he is only a year older than you guys,” a strict and graceful old lecturer, who wore a pair of golden glasses and had a head full of grey hair, said on the stage proudly, “Films are a type of art.
He’ll surely be recognised for his artwork in the Chinese moviedom.” Zhong Simo made a name for himself far quicker than the old lecturer had predicted.
Perhaps, the declining Chinese moviedom that year was the reason.
Zhong Simo relied on the “Innocence” emergence as a force to be reckoned with and swept away awards and prizes from each and every major film festival.
The female lead actress, Jin Ke, also became the youngest female actress to have won an Oscar.
Since then, Zhong Simo’s name had become a legend that never dulled in the entertainment circle for the next ten years.
Ten years later, Shen Yu, who felt encouraged by that class and found his path to work hard towards, struggled in the filming set of a third-rated film adaptation.
Shen Yu shook his head as he mocked himself.
He stood up, deciding to standby at the filming location.
Yet, before he left the door, he folded those pieces of A4 paper and put them carefully into his bag.

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