After a private talk with Brother Luo, Zhao Rui thought this opportunity was very important. He quickly negotiated with the other magazine and agreed to cooperate three days after this conversation.
This meant that after Ming Yu returned from Fashion Entertainment, he had three days of freedom. In the past, the first reaction of Ming Yu whenever he had a break was to ask about what Cheng Su was doing. Therefore, Zhao Rui was surprised when Ming Yu now asked him seriously. "Brother Zhao, do you have copies of the world's major magazines over the past 10 years?"
Due to Zhao Rui's repeated requests, Ming Yu no longer used honorifics with Zhao Rui.
Zhao Rui thought he didn't hear properly until Ming Yu repeated it. Then he replied, "The magazines over the past 10 years for the world's major magazines? Isn't this too much? I don't think there is a spacious collection room large enough to contain all of this."
Ming Yu thought for a moment before adding, "It is fine as long as it the top magazines, first-tier and second-tier magazines."
Zhao Rui thought carefully before he suddenly recalled something. "Yes! I'm not certain, but I think the company definitely has this! I remember that the company's basement was designed to collect the major magazines for each year. There might not be second-tier magazines, but the first-tier magazines would certainly be there.” Having said that, Zhao Rui stopped before asking with confusion. "Ming Yu, what are you doing to do with them?"
The delicate and handsome youth smiled lightly. "I want to start reading magazines."
Zhao Rui was naturally thinking something completely different from Ming Yu. From Zhao Rui's perspective, most models in fashion shows or photo shoots would read the magazine a few hours before it took place. They got in the right mood before starting the shoot or catwalk. What was there to specifically study?
However, Ming Yu thought differently.
What was a fashion magazine?
Fashion magazines were the most obvious signs of the current fashion style.
Apart from the gossip that didn't require much attention, the top magazines contained seasonal fashion trends, recent fashion shows and some of the basic information about the fashion world.
Yes, fashion magazines would help Ming Yu understand this world better.
At present, Ming Yu's understanding of the world was based on the memories of the original owner. However, some of his memories were vague. He also didn't care about some people in the fashion industry. For example, he didn't remember Zhu Wei. In this case, reading the fashion magazines was the best way to completely integrate into this world.
Zhao Rui got Ming Yu a borrowing card and for three days, Ming Yu completely immersed himself in the tens of thousands of fashion magazines.
Ming Yu read very quickly, but he memorized all the useful contents. On the second day, he finished reading all the paper based fashion magazines. Then on the third day, he finished the electronic magazines that appeared in recent years.
This type of reading was really boring, even if they were colourful fashion magazines. Zhao Rui couldn't stand it. So, on the second day, he drove Ming Yu to the company then sneaked out of the collections room.
The warm sunshine shone through the small window into the collections room, illuminating the handsome young man sitting alone in a corner chair, head bent over a magazine and flipping through it. The speed of his actions wasn't slow, but it felt like this scene was a freeze-frame, a quiet and beautiful picture.
However, this picture was soon interrupted by a sudden ringing sound.
Ming Yu unconsciously muted the phone first, then he looked down at the name on the screen and frowned. He put the magazine down and exited the collections room to speak on the phone. "Hello?"
After the simple 'hello', Ming Yu heard a sarcastic voice. "It has been a long time Ming Yu. I think I saw you in the company today? Since when have you started coming to the company?"
The voice was fresh and clean, causing Ming Yu to involuntarily feel a sense of familiarity. But he didn't speak, he just listened to the other person's words. "I told you clearly last time, don't bother me again. I don't feel anything towards you in that respect. Don't you know?"
Ming Yu's heart suddenly soured as he heard the intentionally aggravating words. Ming Yu clearly knew that this wasn't his emotions or memories, but he felt a heavy atmosphere and a slight bitter taste in his mouth.
Was he still holding onto this man?
As he thought, the person on the other end of the phone declared. "Ming Yu, don't come to bother me. I am very busy. I'm not as free as you are everyday. This is the last call I will make to you, so don't call me later. I…"
"Please wait a moment." Ming Yu smiled coldly at the other person's straightforward and hurtful words. "Mister, can you tell me before you continue talking… who are you?"
After a moment, there was the beeping sound of the phone being hung up. Ming Yu didn't call back since he knew that the other person must've put him on the blacklist. It didn't matter if he was put on the blacklist. Even if he wasn't, he would take the initiative to put the other person on the blacklist first.
Yes, Ming Yu knew that this person was Cheng Su since the second sentence.
It wasn’t strange that he didn't recognize the other person's identity at first, since the original body had placed Cheng Su under a strange name.
In Ming Yu's past life, he had raised huskies that he called Dai, Meng, Mai and Chun. He also called a husky Darling. Now that he suddenly saw 'Darling' on the screen, an image of a panting tongue and foolish looking dog face subconsciously appeared in his mind. How could he think that Cheng Su was on the other end?
Although this phone call was an accident, Ming Yu didn't intend to have much contact with Cheng Su. But at the same time, he understood that the obsession belonging to the original owner was still hidden deep in his heart and hadn't dissipated.
What was the original obsession?
—'I want you to remember the name of Ming Yu for the rest of your life!'
Ming Yu smiled at the thought and whispered, "Rest assured. I will make sure he always remembers you."
As if in response to Ming Yu, the bitter feeling faded. Soon, Ming Yu put it behind him and started to carefully read the e-magazines. His break would end tomorrow, so he had to seize this time instead of thinking about Cheng Su.
In a separate lounge on the 41st floor of Muse, a handsome man shook and threw his phone to the ground. Fortunately, the ground was covered with a soft rug so his phone survived without being smashed.
“Who am I? Is this your new method? You better remember your words! Never think about who I am!!!"
Zhao Rui couldn't believe that in three days, his model already read the last 10 years of the world's top magazines. The print and electronic versions of the first and second-tier magazines were all read! How could his small model remember anything, even if he read all of it? This was horrible!
On the road to 'Character', Zhao Rui couldn't helpasking a few questions and he found that MIng Yu could answer all of them. He could express the trends of the fashion industry with a single word.
The trends might not necessarily be popular now, but the fashion industry had a saying—
[10 years is a cycle.]
The high-waisted pants and white shirt that were popular in the last century, couldn't they be seen on the streets now?
The two people soon arrived at the headquarters of 'Character.'
Zhao Rui stopped the car and Ming Yu got off first, looking up at the tall and towering building. It was smaller than Muse, but as a magazine's headquarters, Character was beyond many international first-tier magazines he saw in his previous life.
In the past three days, Ming Yu had touched on the fashion industry of this world. The more he understood, the more excited and passionate he became about Huaxia in this world.
Out of the top 10 magazines in the world, Huaxia accounted for four!
Out of the world's 51 first-tier magazines, Huaxia accounted for eight!
Out of the world's 200 second-tier magazines, Huaxia accounted for 16!
Out of the world's four top fashion shows, Huaxia had one!!!
Not to mention the variety of Huaxia top fashion brands and cutting-edge fashion brand.
The Huaxia fashion circle truly had the ability to compete with Europe and the United States!
In such an environment, Ming Yu had no worries despite all the large mountains in front of him.
Character was one of the eight major fashion magazines in Huaxia.
Last year, Character had barely squeezed into the ranks of Huaxia's first-tier magazines, so it was undoubtedly the youngest of the first-tier magazines. Character had only been founded for 20 years, so they often invited young and upcoming models to cooperate with them.
So, among Huaxia's eight first-tier magazines, Character was the easiest stage for young models.
"Ming Yu, you haven't entered yet? Let's go in!"
Zhao Rui pulled Ming Yu into Character's headquarters.
Zhao Rui might've been lonely in recent years, but he still came to Character's headquarters several times. He was familiar with the layout and lead Ming Yu to the 14th floor. Once the elevator opened, the first thing Ming Yu saw was the magnificent sign stating 'Character'.
In Huaxia, first-tier and second-tier magazines weren't differentiated just from their sales. There were deep gaps in many aspects such as the models invited, the sponsored brands and the international standing.
Character's staff led the two people towards the meeting room. The two people hadn't gone far when they head an editor sighing. "Yesterday, Chen made a phone call to invite Xi Ze, but he still declined. Now I don't know who we should shoot for the cover of our 20th anniversary…"
"I recently heard that Xi Ze is busy with the fashion year that will take place in the first quarter next year, so he has no time."
After turning a corner, the conversing voices faded away. Ming Yu and Zhao Rui waited a few minutes in the meeting room. Then several elite looking middle-aged men appeared, followed by a stylish and elegant woman.
Ming Yu's gaze swept over the woman's body. After a brief conversation between the two groups, Mr. Yang, the deputy editor of Character started speaking. "I have communicated this with Mr. Zhao before. We want to invite four popular new models for a themed photo shoot. In fact, we have managed to invite Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian, who have been doing quite well in the past two years."
Deputy Editor Yang's implication was that, objectively speaking, Ming Yu's reputation was poor and couldn't be compared to these two rising models.
Zhao Rui had naturally prepared in advanced so he calmly said, "We understand your words, Deputy Editor Yang. I also admire Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian's success. It isn't easy since they come from small companies. But I think you should understand that putting those external conditions aside, Ming Yu is no worse than both of them."
Zhao Rui's words were modest. In his mind, he was thinking that his model was much more powerful than both of them!
Zhao Rui paused before continuing. "Since four people are shooting a set of photos, you want to borrow the fame of these four individuals to raise momentum for the campaign. As far as I know, many people in today's circles are optimistic about Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian's future. Many people want to cooperate with them. Since you have successfully invited them, this 'momentum' step is already successful."
Zhao Rui's tone was calm without the slightest bit of cowardice as he completed his analysis, causing Deputy Editor Yant to feel slightly surprised.
A middle-aged man sitting next to Deputy Editor Yang took over. "Mr. Zhao, you have to admit that in terms of popularity, Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian are much higher. It isn't that we don't want to make you an offer. We just need to think again about this contract."
In fact, Ming Yu understood the other side's meaning as soon as Deputy Editor Yang first spoke. Since 'Character' invited them to the magazine's headquarters, it was clear that they wanted to cooperate with Ming Yu. So, what needed to be negotiated here?
Of course, it was closely related to the contract that was about to be signed.
Zhao Rui also understood Character's intentions. He reluctantly suppressed his dissastifaction and said, "Ming Yu's reputation is worst than that of Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian, but they didn't shoot the cover of 'Meditation Road' or appear in 'Lanka'."
A few years ago, Ming Yu shot a cover for the second-tied Meditation Road and appeared in the pages of Lanka, a first-tier Huaxia magazine.
After controlling his emotions, Zhao Rui sighed and continued. "Since we have been recommended by Mr. Luo Yu, I don't think you can doubt Ming Yu's strength. It is understandable if you only consider fame. But if you put all this together, Ming Yu's pay should be the same as Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian…"
The young man's clear and melodious voice was heard in the quiet meeting room, drawing all attention towards him.
Zhao Rui looked at his young model with surprised. Ming Yu's lips curved at everyone's surprised looks and he repeated calmly. "I think it is enough to only receive 50%. In terms of results, I am a lot worse than Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian. I am honoured to have this chance and grateful to you for giving me this opportunity, so I don't care about the pay."
Deputy Editor couldn't help smiling proudly as he listened to Ming Yu's words. Then Ming Yu's expression suddenly took a shy turn as he said, "Sometimes, I think it is luckier to be part of a small company. There aren't as many competitors, so I can receive more resources. What if they were from Muse? They probably… wouldn't rise so quickly in the beginning?"
Ming Yu gently laughed and looked very relaxed, as if he was really speaking his thoughts. However, the calm and powerful aura coming from him made people feel cold.
In particular, Deputy Assistant Yang, who was being stared at by Ming Yu, felt some sweat falling down his forehead. After gulping, the more than 40 years old Deputy Editor Yang trembled as he thought, 'An illusion?' Such aura, he had only experienced it from a few people, and these people were in the rankings of the world's top supermodels…
If Deputy Editor Yang was engrossed in Ming Yu's aura, the lady sitting outside was paying attention to the contents of his words. Chen Rongchen, the editor-in-chief of Character, look at Ming Yu and laughed quietly—
Was this Muse putting pressure on them?
Suppressing Yang and directly hitting the key point…
Chen Rongchen didn't think about it any longer as she knocked her fingers against the table. "50% isn't necessary. The contract will be the same as Wu Yuzhen's."
This remark attracted the attention of others and an editor hurriedly said, "Editor Chen, you…"
"I said, there will be no change in the contract. Do you understand?"
As the editor-in-chief of a first-tier magazine, Chen Rongchen was renowned in the industry for many years. She glanced coldly at her own editors, who only wanted petty profits. She laughed sarcastically, causing them to bow their heads.
After seeing that her mediocre editors had acknowledged their mistake, Chen Rongchen looked at Ming Yu. However, she was surprised to see that the model's expression still looked the same.
—He wasn't surprised at all?
He once again gained extra points in her heart. 'Character's Queen,' Chen Rongchen smiled and said, "Ming Yu, I only value appearance and strength. I think that you deserve this contract and have high enough standards to make this contract reflect its value. Perhaps… your strength will give me a surprise."
Chen Rongchen spoke lightly, but her gaze was fixed on Ming Yu.
People would normally feel twice the pressure when stared at by Character's Queen, but Ming Yu just smiled. "I want to fulfill your expectations, so don't blame me if I do."
This, the contract signing was completed in this 'harmonious and warm' atmosphere.
When Ming Yu and Zhao Rui were about to leave Character, Chen Rongchen handed Ming Yu a business card without speaking, then she turned and left.
As the editor-in-chief of Huaxia's first-tier magazine, she had her own strength of character. She appreciated Ming Yu, but she wouldn't do much if the child didn't make a difference. Every year, there were endless new people with aura in the fashion circles. However, only a few of them managed to stand at the top and enter the supermodel rankings.
Zhao Rui drove away from Character's headquarters and spoke emotionally, "I never expected Queen Chen to take the initiative to speak for you, Ming Yu. Before I came today, I expected that we would be discussing matters concerning the contract. In fact, my bottom line was 60%, but we actually ending up getting the same contract as Wu Yuzhen!"
Ming Yu smiled, "Ms. Chen is very courageous."
"Isn't she? She gave you the same contract as Wu Yuzhen, which shows that your positions are equal when taking photos. After this magazine edition is published, people would look at the photos and say that 'Character has officially recognized that Ming Yu has the same status as Wu Yuzhen and Liu Qian.' This is great!"
"Pfft." Ming Yu was amused by Zhao Rui's tone and couldn't help laughing.
Zhao Rui cried out, "Don't laugh! You don't understand. The pay is one thing, but those editors wanted to make you lower than Wu Yuzhen! On the surface, we were talking about payment issues, but in fact, we were talking about your status in next week's photo shoot."
"I understand." Ming Yu nodded. "Yes, yes."
Zhao Rui exclaimed emotionally, "Queen Chen is really bold!"
The white business car leisurely drove through the city and into the warm and brilliant sunset.
Six days later, Zhao Rui came to Character's studio with Ming Yu. They had just walked out of the elevator when they suddenly saw a familiar figure.
The two sides locked eyes. Zhao Rui was startled, while Ming Yu just smiled slightly and looked at the other person.
And Zhu Wei stared in horror as he cried out in a disbelieving tone, "How is it you?"