"After you enter the top 100, you will be able to see me," a smile hung to the corner of Tangning's lips. She didn't speak too fast nor too slow, so her voice was very soothing.
This was how Xing Lan calmed down, even though the person backing her felt just as dangerous as Li Can.
Seeing that Xing Lan was now relaxed, Lin Qian leaned in and smiled, "Feeling better now?"
"I'm curious why you selected me," Xing Lan tilted her head curiously at Lin Qian. "People like me have no background and attract trouble. Why would you pick me?"
"Superstar Media's biggest aim is to find artists like yourself who are talented but have not progressed in their career," Lin Qian winked. "So, expect to see more people joining us in the future."
After hearing Lin Qian's response, Xing Lan was quite surprised. She couldn't believe that an agency like this existed in the entertainment industry and that she was lucky enough to come across them.
"Stop thinking too much. Relax and focus on your competition."
Xing Lan nodded as her curiosity grew towards the person scheming behind-the-scenes.
But, there was no need to be impatient; she was going to meet her very soon.
The Journey Singing Competiton was actually very popular in Beijing. After all, it only happened once every few years.
On the streets, on the television and all over the internet...there were updates about the competition wherever one went. However, Tangning had asked Xing Lan to maintain a low profile. So, she did not feel like she was truly in the competition yet.
As usual, Lin Qian accompanied Xing Lan to the top 300 elimination round. But, before the competition started, Xing Lan spotted the beautiful woman from last time: Nana.
"Look. Didn't you bet that she would be eliminated?"
"She has indeed been eliminated. You mustn't have watched the replay of the show," Lin Qian said as she raised her eyebrows. "In fact, the judges gave her a pretty bad scolding during the competition."
"Really?" Xing Lan once again looked at the young woman in surprise.
Didn't good looks work?
"The round is about to start..."
Xing Lan held onto her phone, as nervous as ever. She knew that Li Can had planted a trap for her to fall into.
Lin Qian noticed her nervousness and quickly comforted, "It's fine."
As expected, Xing Lan's phone began to ring a few minutes later. She took a glance at the caller ID and said to Lin Qian, "I'm going to pop out and take this call."
"Don't take too long."
Xing Lan nodded before she stepped out into the corridors to pick up her call. After listening to the call, she blitzed out of the building's glass doors without mentioning a word to Lin Qian. Meanwhile, not too far away, Li Can watched the entire scene with her own eyes.
"My dear sister, you sure are naive," Li Can smirked coldly before she put on her sunglasses and left.
Xing Lan waved down a random taxi and hopped inside. However, before the taxi got very far, it ended up colliding with another car. The two drivers stopped to the side of the road and began to negotiate, but no one knew what happened afterwards.
Meanwhile, Lin Qian was aware of what Xing Lan was doing...but the competition was about to start - there were only a few minutes left. If she didn't return in time, the producers would simply disqualify her.
Fortunately, Xing Lan rushed back into the hall a little while later from the back door and sat down beside Lin Qian.
Lin Qian turned her head and leaned against Xing Lan's shoulder as she whispered, "Li Can was outside just a moment ago."
Xing Lan was wearing a new set of clothes. Which meant someone else had gone to 'greet' Li Can's manager on her behalf.
"I know," Xing Lan replied. "I'm going to let Li Can know that her singing is rubbish."
"Time to go on stage. All the best."
This time, Tangning did not give any instructions. She wanted Xing Lan to make her own judgment on how to get the best result.
To go from 300 to 100, the contestants were split into groups of 3. Out of the 3, only 1 would advance and the other 2 would be eliminated.
Compared to the previous rounds, those that were in the top 300 were not only skilled, but they definitely had a solid foundation.
So, the tactics used earlier were no longer effective. But, she had no options this time because the judges selected the songs. So, everyone that went on stage was extremely nervous.
Soon, it was Xing Lan's turn to go on stage. As the stage lit up and the atmosphere became more and more intense, Xing Lan could tell that the judges expectations had become more serious.
"Number 115, before you start, can you tell us why you entered this competition?"
The four judges looked extremely strict and did not look like they enjoyed flattery.
Xing Lan bowed at the four judges and picked up the microphone, "Because my dream was stolen from me and my life was taken from me. I am here to take back what belongs to me."
"I thought you were going to say that you had won many awards in the past, or something along those lines..." the judges were quite interested by Xing Lan's unexpected answer. "You sound like a person with a story. You can start your performance when you're ready. I'm sure you will tell us more about your past as the competition progresses."
Xing Lan gave another bow.
Soon, the stage turned dark and a single spotlight focused on her. Xing Lan listened intently to the prelude of the song and slowly a smile appeared on her face...
"Did you guys hear? Originally, the list for top 100 was to be released in 3 days, but one of the contestants improvised and rearranged her song, pleasing the judges so much that they immediately let her advance to the next round."
"Is that allowed? I thought they had to compare our performances to the original singer's version."
"Who do you think you are? How many people could possibly perform better than the original singer?" Two contestants discussed after the competition ended. As they watched a countrified girl step out of the bathroom, they ignored her and continued talking.
"Hey, do you think that girl is also here for the competition? She looks so lame, yet she's trying to act feminine."
"Hahaha, she got so far even though she's so ugly. She must be playing some tricks behind-the-scenes."
While the two women were laughing, Lin Qian suddenly approached from behind them and stood in the doorway, "The person you are laughing at, is also the only person to directly advance to the next round. I've been following behind you for quite some time, you two gossiping b*tches."
The two women were obviously shocked as their faces turned red.
Lin Qian sneered and left with her arms crossed.
Lin Qian was surprised by Xing Lan's high profile method of advancing to the top 100. But, when she thought about it now, why did it matter?
The time was right.
After all, news about Xing Lan was about to spread throughout the nation and Superstar Media was about to be discovered. So, it was the perfect time to reveal themselves, whether it was Xing Lan or Superstar Media.
Meanwhile, after Li Can returned home, she had already popped open a bottle of Champagne to celebrate. Unfortunately, the news she ended up receiving was of Xing Lan directly advancing to the top 100!
"That b*tch! How's this possible?" Li Can was in disbelief as she quickly jumped online. But, to her surprise, the entire internet was already talking about Xing Lan.