Chapter 247 - Practice Makes Perfect [2 in 1]
Chapter 247: Practice Makes Perfect [2 in 1]
Translator: Lonelytree Editor: Millman97
Han Chu’s wallet was swiped by Ye Shuang just as he got off the plane. At the time, he did not even realize it. Even Ye Shuang, who had been practicing it a lot recently, did not realize the type of cruel thing that she had done.
After practicing for so long with Su Zheng to improve her thieving skill, Ye Shuang had naturally developed some sad instinct. Normally, she still remembered to limit herself using morality and rules, but once she saw Han Chu, she relaxed both physically and mentally. Combined with the fact that they were standing in a way that was similar to how Su Zheng and Ye Shuang stood when they were practicing, doing something like this came naturally to Ye Shuang
“Sir, your ID…” The smile of the hotel receptionist was rather awkward. She saw the expression on Han Chu’s face slowly darkening as he searched his pockets and came up with nothing. His whole body was radiating a cold aura, and it did not take long for him to freeze the air around him, making people close by feel like escaping in tears.
“Brother Han, what’s wrong?” Ye Shuang had not realized the sin that she had committed. She asked that out of curiosity because they had been standing there for some time. Han Chu looked at Ye Shuang silently and started to consider asking for ID and money from the girl to book a room. This was related to his pride as a man. Even though the situation was definitely desperate, he really did not want to ask a girl for a favor like that.
Thankfully, Ye Shuang noticed the awkwardness on Han Chu’s face, and after a moment’s silence, she said with understanding, “Could it be that you’ve lost your wallet?”
“…” Han Chu.
“In that case, I’ll lend you mine for now.” Ye Shuang acted generously and started to rummage through her purse. As she did so, she mumbled, “But it’ll be quite complicated for you to redo your ID. You’re currently outstation, and without the ID, you’ll be unable to book a plane ticket to fly back to Beijing. Let me see… hmm? Whose wallet is this? When did I have it in my purse?”
Ye Shuang held the male leather wallet that she had produced from her purse and turned it around in her hands to study. Her expression was one of confusion.
Han Chu saw this, and his face darkened even more. He reached out to grab the wallet and could not resist glaring at Ye Shuang before turning around. Gritting his teeth to suppress the urge to explode, he pulled out his ID and money.
The beautiful receptionist sighed in relief like she had just survived an ordeal. She worked quickly to help Han Chu with the room. She was so kind that she even called a valet over to help Han Chu carry his small suitcase. After sending away the dark-faced man and his female company, the beautiful receptionist finally dared to breathe. She complained to her colleague beside her, “What’s up with him? It’s just a case of misplaced wallet. Why did he need to scare people like that?”
Han Chu, who had almost caused other people heart attacks, followed the valet to his hotel room. After paying the valet his tip, Han Chu turned around to hiss through gritted teeth, “I though Su Zheng was only helping you out temporarily, but it looks like you two are getting along quite well, right?”
Ye Shuang had also figured out what had happened along the way. She realized the situation and laughed awkwardly. “Well, it never hurts to practice more skills… Ha ha…”
Han Chu looked at Ye Shuang silently for half a minute and could not continue being angry at a lady. He sighed helplessly and removed his jacket before pouring himself a glass of water. He planned to lay this thing to rest. “Sit… Your skill is indeed not bad; there’s no way of telling you’re a beginner. However, the definition of your role is ultimately different from Su Zheng. As the team leader, what you need to do is control and delegate, not enter the fray yourself. Therefore, it’s fine if you have these skills as hobbies, but there’s no need to practice it further.”
The team leader who oversaw the team naturally could not be the one who participated personally in the mission. For example, if a mission had several sections happening at the same time, and she was down there in the field because she was needed at a section, if all the other sections went perfectly, then it would have been fine. However, if there was a mistake by a member or the situation suddenly changed and she could not pull herself out to handle the situation, it would be horrible. This was especially true for technical work like Su Zheng’s. It was fine for a remote control, but all the work and skill that required close contact was not suitable for a team leader.
Only by standing tall could one have a full view of the situation. This theory was true for most situations.
Ye Shuang accepted the advice and said shyly, “I was just curious. Well, it’s just a skill. Knowing it is different from doing it. Perhaps I might run into a situation where I would have a use for it. You never know, right?”
Han Chu nodded and did not say anything more. He cut straight to the point. “I’m not going to ask about your progress with that woman. The only reason I came this time is to deal with the possible conflict with Tian Mo. You carry on with your current plan. After you’ve got the budget, you start to select who to hire. The earlier you resolve the issue here, the better. The information that Xu Jian has collected still needs you to go and analyze it.”
“The information has already been collected?” Ye Shuang was surprised. The man moved fast. She had thought that he would need some more time before there was a report.
“There are some rudimentary names that popped up, but we’re still filtering through it.” Han Chu frowned as he tried to comb through his mind for the memory. “Xu He has taken Xu Jian to get to know a few people, and normally, he gives Xu Jian a few names that he needs to be careful about. However, it is too early to tell who might be the actual member, so we need to continue the observation. Also, since Xu He got back with Xu Jian to get close to you, you’d better spend some time showing up and making your presence known to make the man lower his guard, or else things might change very soon.”
In other words, as long as Ye Shuang paid Xu Jian enough attention, Xu He would continue to cultivate the man. Only when these people made their move would their normally hidden tail be revealed.
“How about this?” Ye Shuang thought about it and realized how unusually busy she would be. “Tomorrow, I’ll try to finish up the few scenes that I have and use the male identity to complete some chores. After I turn back into my female form, I’ll return to San Lin City to make some moves with Xu Jian. Then I’ll come back to shoot the movie, and then in my female form, I’ll participate in the birthday party that Sister Yu mentioned…”
Male, female, male, female… Han Chu was confused by what Ye Shuang said. He could not have been more lost. In the end, he finally stopped her and groused, “Why is it such a mess? Didn’t you come up with a plan before you started this case?”
Ye Shuang voiced her grievances. “All this happened due to the information that I got much later. Initially, I didn’t even know who the boss in Shanghai was, so to get close to Xia Cheng, I had to join the film crew. Then, after I got promoted to mid-tier agent, I realized there is a need for me to find the budget, so I approached Sister Yu. There’s not much to say about Xu Jian. That is a chess piece that was set up from the beginning, so I couldn’t have abandoned him now, could I?”
“…” Han Chu held his forehead in his palm. “Even so, there is no need for you to do everything. Didn’t the other agent tell you that you should choose your team and have the suitable candidate follow up on the job that is suitable for them?”
Earlier, he had just advised Ye Shuang to stay back from the actual case so that she could handle the situation from afar, but for this case, the girl had already rushed ahead and dominated all the jobs. The issue of the thieving skill aside, it turned out all the jobs that were available in this case had been tightly grasped by Ye Shuang.
Then what was the point of a team and team members? What was the point of the people inside the talent storage? Even if she did not want to have fixed members to share the bonus with, she at least had to take out some money to hire some temporary members, right‽
“I just cannot decide the type of team members that I want, so I’m stuck in this conundrum,” Ye Shuang said with a painful expression. “Tony is not bad as a confidential information hacker, but Xu Jian’s application is too unofficial. To cover up what was lacking, I’ve decided to think about it carefully before I select any team members.”
It’s best if they are jacks of all trades and masters of all!
What was the meaning of that? Based on Ye Shuang’s standard, the person had to be strong enough to beat up ruffians, skillful enough to steal from others, seductive enough to fish the client, good enough with computers to prevent hackers… Hmm, at least the one person had to be able to do three or four people’s jobs at the same time. This way, she would be able to save the bonus when she needed to share it.
After understanding Ye Shuang’s impossible wish, Han Chu instantly lost the intention of arguing with her anymore. If she really wanted to follow this standard, even in a few decades, she would not be able to form a team.
After a brief report of the mission progress, they went back to work on the second day. Ye Shuang said goodbye to Su Zheng on the phone, giving the excuse that she had something urgent to attend to, and then changed into Brother Shuang’s identity to go to the set to cheat and lie.
Meanwhile, Han Chu grabbed the small presents that he had prepared from home. After a night of rest, he left the hotel and headed directly to Boss Mo’s home. However, the person that he was looking for was not Boss Mo as Ye Shuang thought but Elder Mo, who was above Boss Mo.
“The sir is not in. If you’re here to look for him, I’m sorry, but you can try to find him at the office…”
Before the maid finished, she was interrupted by Han Chu.
“I understand, I’m looking for Elder Mo.” Han Chu slightly raised his head. “Please inform him that I’m paying him a visit as the son of his old friend. My surname is Han, Han Chu.”
Boss Mo thought that he had no relationship to Han Chu, but he never thought that while his own father appeared like he had retired and pulled himself away from all the things that happened in the world, in reality, he still had a wide social web, and it naturally included the relationship with Han Chu’s family.
He was a senior artist after all. Just like how a new artist with connections would have a better journey than those that did not, Elder Mo had once been a famed actor, so his connections were not worse than the stars on the screen today. Even though he had stayed in Shanghai for most of his life, that did not mean that Elder Mo did not have fans of his work in other states of the country, especially since the works of the senior artists were different from the works produced by the stars today. Now, the movie business was a mass production, and there were many reality shows trying to raise the popularity of certain stars. However, the speed with which the fame rose equaled to how fast the popularity faded away.
However, in the past, news travelled by word of mouth. Only those who had garnered enough praise would get the offer of the main character. Even though they might not enjoy the fame that was possible today with the advent of social media, their longevity was one that could not be compared. Even though they were already half-retired, and decades had passed, many still remembered their names.
Han Chu was soon invited into the room by the maid. He was led directly up to the second-floor study. Elder Mo was wearing his glasses as he used the cloth to wipe his staff. When he heard the door open, he raised his eyes to look. As he put the staff away, he greeted, “Xiao Chu, you’re so mature now. How is your grandfather doing?”
“Elder Mo.” Han Chu bowed in polite greeting. Following the signal from Elder Mo, he chose a seat to sit down. Then, he nodded softly and said, “Grandpa is doing well. Last month, he even managed to capture two thieves, and I heard he was almost awarded the good citizen award.”
Elder Mo laughed. “Good citizen award?”
Then he reached out to grab the tea cup and blew on it. After taking a small sip, he put the cup down and sighed. “He has always been active since he was young. I’m surprised that he still acts that way even at his age.”
What else could he say to that? As cute as his grandfather was, he was his senior. Elder Mo was his senior, so he had the right to jokingly mock his grandfather, but Han Chu could not say anything. Thus, he could only smile and nod. Elder Mo did not mind that Han Chu did not pick up the thread of conversation. He studied Han Chu closely before nodding with satisfaction. “You’ve grown up so fast. Thankfully, you didn’t inherit that personality from your grandfather. I heard you entered a government department but left it to start a business of your own.”
“It was the ministry of state security.” Han Chu listed the name and then continued to explain. “Elder Mo, you sure have a good memory.”
“Oh?” Elder Mo smiled. “Then why did you leave? Was it due to some mistake?”
Han Chu accepted the cup from the maid, who had entered the room to serve tea. After the maid left, he sighed with a rueful smile on his face. “It’s because I have a friend.”
Even for someone as experienced as Elder Mo, he could not figure out the meaning behind Han Chu’s answer that seemed to come from nowhere. He has a friend? Of course, who would not have a friend in this life? So, what about this friend?
Han Chu sighed under his breath. If possible, he really did not want to bring up his past. Having a friend was normal, but if this friend had some unusual hobby and just happened to be a very powerful hacker, then one could imagine how dangerous it was to keep this friend around.
One, Han Chu did not want to make things bigger than they were. He had held quite a high position inside the office, and if there was an accidental leak of information, him getting the punishment was one thing, but if his family was dragged into it, it would be the end of his world. Two, Han Chu had to take Anthony’s personal safety into consideration.
Due to Anthony’s talent at the computer, he grabbed other people’s attention easily. He was also on the FBI’s watch list. On this basis, if Han Chu, who worked at the ministry of state security, got too close to Anthony, many things would become incredibly complicated.
The sensitivity of Han Chu’s work, the sensitivity of Anthony’s identity… even though Han Chu could guarantee that Anthony would not do anything to harm the safety of his country and his friend, he could not guarantee that other people would think the same way. Therefore, to ensure that their friendship could be continued and would not change, one party had to compromise. Only by avoiding the confidential and the sensitive would he be able to guarantee the maximum level of Anthony’s privacy and freedom.
“The conclusion is that the place didn’t suit me.” Han Chu did not explain the situation to Elder Mo. He took a sip of the tea and said, “My current situation means I no longer work with too sensitive information. Other than that, I had to consider my family’s influence and the problem from my own social circle.”
Elder Mo nodded and did not continue the questioning. He also knew about a few things from the ministry of state security. This was China’s only recognized body of information. The people who really worked at the ministry would not reveal any information to an outsider. The agent would not say anything to their parents, spouse, children, or anyone who tried to spy on their job scope and working arrangement. Elder Mo was only a friend of his parents, so naturally, he understood the reticence. The so-called Team Dragon or Team A were stuff of rumors, popularized by the mass media.
For example, the bureau of state secrets. They were responsible for protecting secrets and investigating leaks. To put it frankly, it was about observation. However, after some misinformation, many people thought it was a special ops unit. The actual meaning was probably ‘we’re dealing with secrets’, but after being processed by the rumors, it became ‘the work that we’re dealing with is secret’.
Avoiding the sensitive topic, Elder Mo chuckled and said, “It’s rare for Xiao Chu to come and visit an old man like myself, so let’s not dwell on these serious topic. By the way, why did you come to visit me today?”
Han Chu nodded and came out with the real reason he was there.
“Uncle Mo is currently working with a global crime syndicate.” Alright, Han Chu admitted that he might have exaggerated a little bit.
Elder Mo’s hands shuddered, and the tea cup in his hands almost fell. What the f*ck! What is happening‽
Han Chu’s ability to scare people was definitely at an expert level. The man was good at analyzing and used actual data and events to back up his perspective. He could grab at issues that people might ignore and then used a very convincing tone to greatly amplifying its potential damage. It would make his listener very fearful, like if they did not correct themselves quickly, they would end up the sinner of the human race.
Actually, many things had their positive side and negative side. Most of the time, the key was not whether it was wrong or not but the limit that was applied in said choice. However, when Han Chu was trying to lead to a certain result, and people rarely had the ability to pull themselves out from his reasoning and see the other side. That was how Elder Mo was led into the whirlpool of words.
A global money-laundering unit, being targeted and profiled by FBI… this kind of person was working with his son? What was that kid thinking about‽ Therefore, after Han Chu departed like a breath of wind, Elder Mo simmered in his study. The anger was collecting in his heart as he waited for his son to return.
When Han Chu arrived at the set to see Ye Shuang’s situation, the latter had just finished the fitting and was about to enter the scene. After the set director told her that Han Chu had just arrived, Ye Shuang turned back to look. Holding the sword on her waist, she walked toward the man.
Han Chu’s brows raised. Seeing the tall, handsome man that looked like a swordsman from Ancient China walk toward him, he suddenly had the urge to move his eyes away. That was too blinding! No matter how he looked at it, he could not imagine this was a woman.
“That simple?” After she heard the summary from Han Chu as she stood beside him, Ye Shuang was rather shocked. “I remember Elder Mo is quite a sharp old man, how did you manage to fool him so easily?”
Han Chu moved silently one step to the side to avoid the comparison from standing next to Brother Shuang. Then he calmly added, “Elder Mo has actually been worried about Boss Mo going down the wrong path. After all, the human heart is fragile before the lure of benefit. Yes, Boss Mo has the talent for business, but because he is too talented, he sometimes makes decision that are too drastic.”
The running of an entertainment company was different from a conventional company. The former had too many gray areas that could not be explained. If one was not careful, it was quite easy to cross the line.
Due to the pressure, as well as the blessed good looks and support from the public, it was easy for them to get into their head. Or they might do something wrong for the purpose of venting. Or it was not really all that, but to maintain their name in the mind of the public, many people would come up with fake news to grab the people’s attention.
Fake relationship, fake love, fake friendship. Purposely having a nip-slip at a big event was already something small. There were people who went as far as taking drugs in the public eye…
Such a career originally depended on creating a fake image before the public’s eye to gain opportunities and followers. With the accumulation of so many lies, the entertainment business that created the lies and cleaned up the mess naturally could not have been so innocent either.
For example, before this, Boss Mo once manipulated the media to swamp Luo Mingxin in horrible news. Such a dirty tactic was fairly common in the business. Those in the know did not even think much of it. Boss Mo understood this theory, so he had enjoyed a successful career. However, Elder Mo did not wish to see his son continue on this road of no return.
“The bigger Boss Mo’s business became, the more Elder Mo worried about him doing something horrible, crossing the line. Once something has a beginning, it’s hard to tell what will happen in the future,” Han Chu explained patiently. “Elder Mo has been advising his son to go into another business or slow down on his expansion. The news that I brought this time was merely a trigger. Even though there is some exaggeration, it fit perfectly into what Elder Mo was worried about.”
“Then I can understand it now.” Ye Shuang nodded. “This is exactly what he’s worried about.”
Han Chu did not want to go into detail. Other than the fact that the news he had brought hit close to home for Boss Mo, there were other elements, like his son’s face, that were involved in the incident.
On one hand, his son had done something that crossed the line. On the other hand, his old friend’s grandson had come over to inform him because he did not want to go after Boss Mo. After weighing up the options, it was clear whom he should lean toward. After all, Han Chu had already explained that it would not affect Boss Mo’s current business, so what was so difficult about abandoning a partner that might cause serious trouble‽
The set director came over to inform them. “Brother Ye, the director told you to be ready. After this current scene with the body doubles is done, we’ll need to shoot a few more scenes.”
On the set, three body doubles were riding horses. A man and a woman shared the same horse, and the body double that wore the same set of armor as Ye Shuang was riding alone on the other horse.
“What scene is this?” Han Chu asked casually.
“I was supposed to follow the general’s order to capture this pair of lovers and drag them back to face their death.” Even though Ye Shuang knew how to ride a horse, she did not have any intention of doing it herself. She hugged her arms and stood to the side to watch the scene. Then, she explained how she would die in the future to Han Chu. “Later, the man will die. The woman is dragged back to the palace because she is an escaped concubine of the emperor. In the future, the woman will take revenge on the man’s behalf to kill me, the best warrior the country ever saw. After I die, the country will fall.”
Han Chu really did not know what to say. “…Wasn’t this supposed to be a serious historical film?”
“No matter how serious it is, there have to be some light moments. Some tweaking is unavoidable.” Ye Shuang laughed. “As long as it doesn’t ruin the actual history and bigger picture too much, you can take your creativity with the details that were not recorded. This is a compromise we make for the audience.”
Then, the set director looked around and lowered his voice to add, “Brother Ye, the director told you to be ready because he wants you on the horse. Even though you don’t need to ride it that well, at least we have to have some shots of you on the cantering horse. Other than that, it would be great if you can give us some action scenes on the horse.”
Even the female side character was on the horse, so how could an extra stay out of it?
Ye Shuang followed the direction of the set director’s gaze and saw the female side character swaying unevenly on the back of the horse.