Natiwuzi let his men lead Fang Zhao to another exit that was less noticeable.
From the time he had entered Natiwuzi's room all the way till he left, all communications on his bracelet had been blocked, and they only returned back to normal after he got out.
Notification sounds rang out as his bracelet vibrated. Fang Zhao took a look. He had missed over 10 calls and had notifications of over 100 messages.
The messages' contents were all inquiring about whether the "nightclub fight incident" was real and whether he was all right. There were people from Silver Wing, the virtual projects department, Wayne, Duan Qianji... A number of student leaders and teachers from Qi'an Academy of Music had also sent messages.
Fang Zhao mass sent a message informing everyone that he was safe, and he quickly received a new incoming call. The sender was the teacher in charge of his university class back when the original owner of this body had still been alive. When Fang Zhao went over to the school to give lectures, he would chat with his former teacher-in-charge. He was a plump middle-aged man who was always smiling. He seemed friendly, but students who were under him knew how fierce he could be.
This teacher had coincidentally called as Fang Zhao was mass sending the message, so he picked up the call after he was done. Other people who called him after receiving the message had to temporarily be put on hold.
His former teacher in charge sounded very worried. "Fang Zhao, what's your situation over there?"
"It's nothing, I'm about to head home," Fang Zhao replied.
His former teacher's tone had a hint of doubt. "It's really nothing?"
Fang Zhao switched to a video call. "I'm really fine."
When he saw Fang Zhao's image and nothing seemed wrong, only then did the former teacher-in-charge feel at ease. He had been woken up by urgent calls from some of his students, informing him that Fang Zhao had fought in Space and been detained by the security team. The news had scared him awake, and since he had not been able to contact Fang Zhao, he had contacted a few of his good friends. Only after that, when he'd tried calling Fang Zhao again, had the call gotten through.
However, since when were those students so close with Fang Zhao? To actually help Fang Zhao find help in the middle of the night?
Whatever the case, when he'd heard what had happened, Fang Zhao's former teacher-in-charge had become anxious too. Fang Zhao was his student and a junior he looked highly upon. Them teachers had discussed in private before and felt that this youngster Fang Zhao had the most potential for development and could best expand the influence of the Qi'an music faculty on the global scene.
And hearing the news of Fang Zhao hitting someone in a nightclub was totally unimaginable!
After that, Fang Zhao recorded a short video message and sent it out, informing everyone that he was safe and all right.
"There are reporters around. It's not advisable to leave from the main exit or other exits known to our customers. Mr. Fang, please head this way." The security personnel led Fang Zhao to another path. "Right, your bodyguard came as well. We let him wait over there."
Zuo Yu saw the message Fang Zhao had just sent. Because he had heard that Fang Zhao had had a situation here, Zuo Yu had gotten up in the middle of the night and driven over fully armed, and he'd even contacted a number of friends in Qi'an City. They had been ready to start a rescue mission. In the end, when he'd just arrived, he'd received Fang Zhao's message proclaiming he was safe, not giving Zuo Yu the chance to perform. When the security personnel outside the nightclub had heard Fang Zhao's name, their attitudes had seemed especially good, which puzzled Zuo Yu, and he'd even suspected that the security personnel were dropping smoke bombs to confuse him. When he received Fang Zhao's reply, it confirmed that the situation was not what he had imagined. It was instead totally different.
"Entertainment news is nothing but trouble!" Zuo Yu lamented as he sat in the car waiting in Space's underground car park for staff. He had received news of Fang Zhao having a situation, and when Fang Zhao had been uncontactable, he'd went online and seen a few entertainment tabloid headlines:
"Silver Wing Virtual Project Department Member Fights Six People Barehanded."
"Showing His True Colors after Drinking! He Actually Dares to Create Trouble at Space!"
"Exposed Video of Silver Wing Boss Assaulting Others."
The more Zuo Yu saw, the more speechless he became. Zuo Yu could believe Fang Zhao had taken on six people; his boss possibly had that much ability. Watching Fang Zhao kick someone straight offline in-game, he knew that Fang Zhao was definitely not as harmless as he looked. But after that, the news became "Silver Wing Boss"? The overexaggeration here was too strong.
There were a few dark, fuzzy, and noisy videos circulating. These videos were shaky, and nobody in the video could be clearly seen. The sounds of shouting, music, and commentary were all jumbled up in a mess. There was not a single clear video, but for sure, the place in the video was Space's dance hall, and in one of the videos, a person was seen hurtling through the air after a kick.
As Fang Zhao came over together with the security personnel, Zuo Yu examined him carefully and realized that Fang Zhao was fine. Wasn't it said that, whether there were reasons or not, any troublemaker at Space would suffer? Why did it seem like that was not completely true?
One security personnel led the way in front of Fang Zhao, and behind him was another personnel carrying a large case and following behind diligently. When he saw that attentive behavior, Zuo Yu even imagined that the guy was trying to steal his job.
"Mr. Fang, your stuff has been placed in the car." The security personnel had been ordered by Natiwuzi to pack the guitar in a case and escort Fang Zhao out.
Fang Zhao heard that Thomas and Cheng Lan were still inside, so he got someone to bring the two out and get the nightclub's driver to send them home.
"Senior, are you really all right?" Thomas and Cheng Lan asked in disbelief once more before they left.
"I'm fine. It's late, you guys hurry up and go home."
Fang Zhao watched them leave with the driver before entering his own car.
The car exited from an underground driveway and took an elevator up and emerged at a flyover.
"Boss, you gave me a big scare today," Zuo Yu said.
"Where did you get the news from?" Fang Zhao asked.
"The paparazzi king that you pulled into the team said you got into a fight at Space. No idea where he got the news from, but he might be waiting outside Space to grab some news. I came the moment I heard the news and even called a few helpers. In the end, since you were all right, I let the others leave."
"A pretty good reaction. You get a pay raise this month," Fang Zhao replied.
"Yeah, just nice for me to treat them to a meal. Even though they were not needed, they reacted quickly and came out in the middle of the night without any questions asked."
"You can submit an expense claim for the food."
"Hahaha, Boss, you are wise indeed!" Zuo Yu's tension finally settled down, and he asked, "Boss, where did those six come from? What did they do?"
"I don't know where they came from, but their target was me, and they seemed quite sinister. Natiwuzi said they had on them a drug that enhances creativity and stimulates the brain."
Zuo Yu shuddered. "You mean the kind of drug that is not prohibited but is loathed by all the older artists?"
Zuo Yu had heard of this even though he was not in production circles. When creating stuff, certain artists would use some medication to stimulate themselves when they were low on inspiration. It was rumored that, after using these drugs, the brain would be very active and their inspiration would be overflowing. It was a shortcut method used by many young artists these days and involved many industries, such as composing, photography, design, and others. However, older and more prestigious artists detested it bitterly.
Taking medical substances to gain inspiration was not necessarily the most appropriate thing for a creator to do. Even if they could produce a work, it would not be ripe enough or perfect enough, and the creator might miss out on some of their own potential, which could have resulted in them creating a masterpiece. And once they were dependent on substances, their creativity might be restricted.
Sometimes, inspiration needed a longer time to mature and required an accumulation of time and experience, but there were always impetuous people within the circle who thirsted for success and could not wait, hence choosing this path.
There was an old artist that had once accepted an interview and given his views on this matter. He did not approve of using such substances to gain inspiration. There were even examples: once, there were two directors from Yanzhou competing for the position of president of Yanzhou's Director Association. It was revealed that one of the directors had used substances in the process of filming many of his works, and ultimately, for the final vote, many old directors voted against him and he lost the election.
These people probably had not had the chance to make their move in the private room and so had decided to make their move when Fang Zhao headed to the dance floor. Therefore, this had resulted in Fang Zhao's first ever dancing experience ending with assault
In Yanzhou's composing circles, for virtuous and reputable old artists, Fang Zhao only knew Xue Jing. If news was exposed of Fang Zhao using substances to compose, the person hurt the most would probably be Xue Jing. Qi'an Academy of Music might also terminate his employment, and he might even be alienated from the Qi'an music circles.
Zuo Yu's expression became solemn. "Old Master Xue Jing is an academic representative, I heard that Old Master Xue is currently arranging a global lecture tour and will bring you along when the time comes. Could it be that some people are jealous and are trying to make Old Master Xue give up on his recommendation of you? But given Space's stringent security checks, how could these people have smuggled the drugs in? Unless they had people on the inside?"
"That is why Natiwuzi said he would give me a full explanation."
"Boss, bring me along the next time you visit such places. It's safer to have a bodyguard by your side. In the future, there will surely be more such situations." Given Fang Zhao's ability, Zuo Yu reckoned that his boss would keep climbing higher. Whether Fang Zhao walked down the path of a star or an academic, whether publicly or in the shadows, he would surely encounter many such situations. It had only been mind-stimulating drugs this time, but what if there were guns next time?
Fang Zhao knew what Zuo Yu meant. As long as he kept moving forward, there would be people pushed downward and people getting obstructed.
Regardless of the party, whoever was capable moved upward!
Since I am capable and better than you, unless I let you pass on my own accord, you better obediently get lost behind me!
Given Fang Zhao's character, he would not be scared off by such a matter. After all, he had a hundred years worth of experience from a darker time, and his temperament was different from his "peers." If the ones that ordered this had already been surpassed by Fang Zhao, he would leave them further in the dust, but if this had been planned by those temporarily ahead of himself, when Fang Zhao surpassed them, he would stomp on them even more viciously!
Zuo Yu noticed his boss was not the least bit intimidated and asked, "Boss, have you seen the entertainment news?"
"You made the headlines."
"Just... the headlines of various tabloids are about this matter, saying that you smashed a nightclub and have an inflated ego. They even say the prospects of Jinro and the others following you are bleak. Media outlets keep stirring this up." Zuo Yu seemed happy. When he'd found out that the truth was totally different from his reports, he had breathed easy.
Given Fang Zhao's reputation, this matter making the headlines in such a short time was unlikely. Some strings were definitely being pulled in the background. Parties that saw Silver Wing unfavorably could have made the move. Though they might not have had any connection with those people in the nightclubs, they would have pushed for the news of Silver Wing being a joke and been delighted in Fang Zhao suffering misfortune.
Wayne was relieved as well when he found out the truth. He was figuring out their next move together with the public relations department. It just so happened that they could wait for this fire to burn bigger before borrowing the flame.
News of Fang Zhao's fight at the nightclub was published in the wee hours of the morning. Many were still asleep, and there was a limit to the night owls that were still online. On the morning of the second day, when people were heading to school and work, the viewership was a lot greater.
"The f*ck! Fang Zhao? Creating trouble and assaulting others at a nightclub? Did I read wrongly?"
"Visiting a nightclub in the middle of the night and assaulting others? Whoa, I couldn't tell that Fang Zhao had such a fiery temper!"
"I heard he was drunk?"
"Sometimes, a bottle of wine is more effective than a magic mirror."
"I'm rather new to this. May I know who Fang Zhao is?"
"The brother who posted on top, are you new to the gaming circle? You should at least know Jinro-god, right? Let me tell you, Fang Zhao is the immediate superior of Jinro and the others. Early on, I just could not stomach it. They say he is a composer who does not do any proper duties and doesn't understand games, so what qualifications does he have to be the boss?! It is rumored that Fang Zhao makes things difficult for Jinro and the others, only caring about results and making them work overtime everyday!"
Jinro was having breakfast while browsing the news. When he saw the discussion, he nearly spewed out all his food. "Stop talking nonsense! I still wish to live longer in-game!"
The masses online could not know what Jinro and the others were thinking and were enthusiastically discussing this matter.
"Not a single one of these management-level personnel are good. Enjoying themselves in an office, only using their mouths to get things done and visiting a club at night while the people under them work like dogs!"
"Yeah, with Fang Zhao having such a bad temper, I wonder how Jinro and the others survive under him. I hope they aren't being abused."
The online masses had succumbed to influence and now pictured a scene of a rich, evil man bullying his pitiful workers.
There were a number who spoke up for Fang Zhao, including teachers and students of Qi'an Academy of Music, but their numbers were limited, and without a good understanding of the situation, their voices were quickly drowned out.
There were others that knew about Space's background and took delight in other's misfortune. They thought that Fang Zhao had surely suffered some serious injury.
Fang Zhao also received many consoling text messages and calls. Even he could not tell which were genuinely sincere and which ones were making discreet inquiries.
At 10 a.m., renowned ancient guitar master and one of the three fastest guitarists in the world, nicknamed "Yanzhou's Shadowless Hands," Natiwuzi, updated his status on the world's largest entertainment social platform. There were no words, only a short tune of a guitar being played and a photograph. Natiwuzi liked to use audio to express his own feelings.
The photograph was the one taken in Space alongside Fang Zhao. In the picture, Natiwuzi was all smiles.
Those closer to Natiwuzi posted joking replies below.
"The old man is so happy, perhaps he found another long lost son?"
"Or perhaps he discovered another long lost grandson?"
Ignorant strangers inquired, "Why 'another'?"
However, these old friend's would not mention Natiwuzi's private affairs in public.
Quickly, Natiwuzi's old friends added on to the commentary.
"After listening to the audio, all I can say is that the youngster in the photograph with that old fellow is not ordinary! This time, the old fellow was stirred up. Perhaps he has really found another son or grandson?"
Fang Zhao frowned as he read the comments. Son? Even grandson? The other way around would be more accurate.
Afterward, Fang Zhao replied to Natiwuzi's status. Similarly, his reply was without words, just audio of a guitar tune.
Backstage at a theater in Huangzhou, Li Kasi was getting his hair fixed by a stylist when he stretched out his hand and told his assistant, "Bring me my double-neck electric guitar." Li Kasi was just like Natiwuzi, one of the three speed-strumming maestros in the world.
Thus, under Fang Zhao's reply to Natiwuzi's status, Li Kasi uploaded a reply that was also a wordless audio clip of a guitar tune.
On a certain sea far away from Yanzhou, the last of the three great guitar masters, Jiminy, was enjoying the seascape on board a yacht. He chuckled faintly and said, "Makes sense," as he picked up a 10-string guitar.
Jiminy uploaded a wordless guitar tune to Li Kasi's reply.
Therefore, the many media outlets and online masses that were glued to Natiwuzi and Fang Zhao's situation were dumbfounded.
These people... can they even use human language?