It took a moment for Xu Chuanchuan to realize that the "Tang Xin" Fang Qin spoke of was Ange. Then, she gulped down in her mouth and exclaimed, "You're still in contact with her?!"
Fang Qin's face heated up a little when subjected to Xu Chuanchuan's glowing eyes. Then, she said, "I accidentally came across her during my business trip."
"This means you two are destined for each other! Shanghai is such a big place, yet you two still managed to meet each other!" Xu Chuanchuan said in excitement.
Fang Qin's face grew even hotter. After clearing her throat, she said, "To be precise…we met when I passed by her shop and went in to buy things."
Hearing this, Xu Chuanchuan pointed at the box of walnut cakes on the table and asked, "Did you buy these from Ange's shop?"
"Uh, I mean Tang Xin," Xu Chuanchuan quickly corrected herself when she realized her mistake. "Did you deliberately visit her shop to buy these?"
A hint of embarrassment appeared on Fang Qin's face when she heard the word "deliberately," but she still nodded her head.
Xu Chuanchuan widened her eyes as she realized something. "Don't tell me you…"
"Don't look at me like that." Fang Qin turned her head away.
Then, Xu Chuanchuan smacked the table and said, "But I'm anxious!"
"What are you anxious about?"
Xu Chuanchuan grabbed a napkin and wiped her mouth. Then, she rapidly said, "The two of you are single and are our best friends. Murong and I both hope that you and Tang Xin can end up together!"
"Is that so?" With a somewhat absent-minded look, Fang Qin said, "But Tang Xin, she…"
Then, putting on a solemn expression, Fang Qin said, "After I returned from my business trip, we sometimes chat on WeChat, but I feel like she is being very cold. I am always the one who initiates our conversations, and she usually takes a long time to reply. Even her replies are mostly superficial. So, I think that she probably doesn't have any feelings for me."
"So, can I take it that you have feelings for her?" Xu Chuanchuan asked.
Fang Qin blushed slightly before revealing a restrained smile.
Xu Chuanchuan instantly understood Fang Qin's reaction, and she couldn't help but chuckle. Then, she said, "All is good so long as you have feelings for her. So long as you have feelings, then you will have hope."
Shrugging, Fang Qin said, "I can't even have a proper conversation with her. What hope is there?"
"When do you normally contact her?"
"No wonder." Realization dawned upon Xu Chuanchuna. Then, she said, "She's living by American time. She normally only wakes up in the afternoon and starts working at night. She might have been busy during the times you looked for her."
"Isn't she unemployed right now?" Fang Qin asked in surprise.
"Uh, she lied to you."
"She lied to me?" A slight frown formed on Fang Qin's face. Then, unable to hold back her curiosity, she asked, "What does she work as?"
"This…" Xu Chuanchuan hesitated on whether to tell Fang Qin the truth.
Coincidentally, Murong Shi returned at this time. Looking at the person who had occupied her seat, she flatly asked, "What are you sitting here for?"
In response, Fang Qin wrapped an arm around Xu Chuanchuan's shoulders. She even stuck her face close to Xu Chuanchuan's before sending a provocative glance to Murong Shi, saying, "I like Chuanchuan, so can't I be closer to her?"
Murong Shi narrowed her eyes.
Xu Chuanchuan pushed Fang Qin away without hesitation. Before a certain jealous bug began acting up again, she hurriedly said, "Fang Qin is joking. The one she likes is Tang Xin."
Tang Xin?" Murong Shi wasn't a stranger to this name. However, when she heard the word "like," she couldn't help but be a little surprised. "So, you went to Shanghai this time to look for her?"
As if she had just won the lottery, Xu Chuanchuan excitedly answered on Fang Qin's behalf, "She should've gone to Shanghai for a business trip and visited Tang Xin while she is there. Am I right, Fang Qin?"
"..." Fang Qin silently stood up and returned to her seat.
Meanwhile, after Murong Shi reclaimed her seat, she looked at the person across from her with interest and asked, "Did you fall in love with her on your first meeting? Love at first sight?"
Fang Qin might be able to speak carefreely with Xu Chuanchuan, but she couldn't bring herself to do so in front of Murong Shi. So, she picked up her chopsticks and said, "The food is getting cold. Let's eat, let's eat."
Seeing this, Murong Shi turned to Xu Chuanchuan and jokingly said, "The sun must've risen from the west today. This person actually knows how to feel shy."
Giggling, Xu Chuanchuan said, "Don't be shy, Fang Qin. If you have a problem, just say it. We can help you solve it together."
"Alright, alright." Fang Qin quickly caved to the pressure. After placing down her chopsticks and letting out a long sigh, she asked, "I already told you my problem. How do you plan on helping me solve it?"
"What problem?" Murong Shi asked.
In response, Xu Chuanchuan leaned into Murong Shi's ear and whispered, "Fang Qin feels that she doesn't have anything in common with Ange to talk about. I'm currently thinking of whether to tell her about Ange's real identity."
"It's nothing unethical, so why can't you say it?"
"That might be true, but…" Xu Chuanchuan knitted her brows.
Xu Chuanchuan found it difficult to explain to Murong Shi that web novel authors like she and Ange generally did not wish people in the real world to know about their job. Even though it wasn't an unethical job, an author having their real identity exposed was akin to being caught naked.
Looking Xu Chuanchuan in the eye, Murong Shi asked, "Don't you wish to see them together?"
"Of course I wish to!"
"Fang Qin is utterly ignorant about Tang Xin. Unless they're standing on the same playing field, there's no hope of a relationship forming at all."
Murong Shi's words silenced Xu Chuanchuan. This was indeed a serious problem, and Xu Chuanchuan couldn't help but hesitate. "Then…"
"What are you two whispering to each other about?" Fang Qin interrupted after getting ignored for some time.
Probably growing impatient from Xu Chuanchuan's hesitation, Murong Shi said, "I'll say it, then."
Xu Chuanchuan flinched.
"Say what?" Fang Qin asked in confusion.
Without any foreshadowing, Murong Shi got straight to the point and said, "Tang Xin is a novel author. If you really wish to pursue her, you might need to expend some effort."
"Novel...author?" Fang Qin carefully pondered over these two words. Then, shock appeared in her eyes as she muttered, "She's that amazing?"
Murong Shi smirked. Then, she wrapped an arm around the person beside her and delightfully said, "This person in front of you is a novel author as well."
"No, no, no, I'm no author. Ange is the author," Xu Chuanchuan said, hurriedly waving her hands.
"You too?" Fang Qin looked at Xu Chuanchuan in astonishment.
Now that Murong Shi had exposed the crucial point, Xu Chuanchuan felt that there was no meaning in keeping her mouth shut. So, after sorting out her thoughts, she said, "Tang Xin's pen name is Ange, and she is indeed amazing. Actually, she isn't my university classmate. I met her through writing web novels. However, I'm a noob, while she is a god. Almost every book Ange wrote has received physical publication. She even sold the film rights to five of her books. One of her books named End of The World will air as a TV drama soon."
Xu Chuanchuan spoke as if she was counting treasures as she mentioned her good friend's achievements. She revealed everything in one breath, her enthusiasm causing the two other people at the table to reveal complicated expressions.
Murong Shi handed a bowl of soup to Xu Chuanchuan. Then, in a slightly unhappy tone, she said, "Nobody's rushing you, so why are you speaking in such a hurry?"
Fang Qin took a long while to process this astonishing information. Then, she muttered, "This is really unexpected."
Now that there was an opportunity to match her two close friends together, Xu Chuanchuan spared no effort as she continued, "Ange is a full-time writer, and most of her life is spent around novels. If you want to find a common topic with her, you might have to start from this aspect."
Fang Qin absent-mindedly ate some food. After pondering in silence for some time, she said, "But wouldn't it seem strange if I suddenly talk to her about these things?"
"This…" Fang Qin's question stumped xu Chuanchua. When she imagined someone other than Murong Shi talking with her about novels, she found that she was against the idea. As to how Ange would feel about such a situation, Xu Chuanchuan couldn't say for certain. After all, she didn't know exactly how Ange felt about Fang Qin right now.
Xu Chuanchuan couldn't help but bite her spoon in frustration. She had initially thought that everything would be solved once she revealed Ange's identity to Fang Qin. Unfortunately, that was not the case at all.
After the meal, the group split up and returned to their respective homes.
Unable to hold back her gossiping heart, Xu Chuanchuan logged into QQ. She thought to seek out Ange and ask what her friend thought of Fang Qin. However, when she logged into QQ, she found that Ange had sent her a message half an hour ago.
Ange: "You unlucky child. You got called out again. [Link]"
What's going on?
Xu Chuanchuan hurriedly clicked the link and got redirected to a pink-colored forum.
"Clear Water" was jjwxc's anonymous forum for authors. It was generally a place for authors to discuss various issues related to writing. However, while the forum was indeed created for authors, many readers were also lurking in it.
The forum was generally very peaceful. However, when drama between authors occurred, many people would emerge to join in on the fun.
Xu Chuanchuan still remembered that someone had called her out on Clear Water some months ago for making donations to herself. However, before she could even see the post, the forum moderators had already removed the post due to the accuser providing insufficient evidence.
This should be the second time already, right?
Xu Chuanchuan couldn't understand how she managed to offend anyone even though she had been keeping to herself throughout her entire writing career. When she looked at the post and saw her pen name is written in the title, she couldn't help but be shocked.
—This is for real this time! Yuri author, I Love Malatang, is making donations to herself! Evidence included!
The main post was lengthy, and it contained both texts and images. After reading through it, Xu Chuanchuan roughly understood why she was being accused.
Everything began with "Passerby Shi" donating 33 Deep-water Torpedoes to her new work.
Indeed, Murong Shi had donated that many.
Xu Chuanchuan had written about "Passerby Shi" making donations to her in her new story. Meanwhile, whenever such instances came up, Murong Shi would send a Deep-water Torpedo. Although Xu Chuanchuan had tried stopping her, Murong Shi had righteously responded by saying, "Apart from being your girlfriend, I am also your reader. I have the right to donate to the author I like."
It was a twisted logic, and Xu Chuanchuan had no words to counter.
Making donations to oneself on jjwxc was not against the platform's rules. In fact, many authors would do so to gain more exposure.
Meanwhile, the reason why the accuser this time was so certain that Xu Chuanchuan was making donations to herself was because the users "Passerby Shi" and "I Love Malatang" had the same IP address. The accuser even had images to prove it.
One of the post's paragraphs was as followed: "[Image]This is a screenshot of the group's conversation. This person named Passerby Shi says she is I Love Malatang's girlfriend, but I Love Malatang never showed herself in the group throughout this process. Even when I Love Malatang's readers ask her about her girlfriend in the comment section, the author refuses to reply at all. That's because she is feeling guilty, right? Also, didn't the author repeatedly emphasize that she is straight? Can a person get bent so easily? I doubt that."
This person even has my group's conversation record. Did they sneak into my reader group? Xu Chuanchuan couldn't help but be astonished reading up to this point.
Here's the link for Chapter 1:
Read it, or else. :)
Other novels I translate on Hosted Novel:
Pantsu Hero Alice (PHA)
Reincarnation of the Strongest Sword God (Side Stories)
Miss Cousin is Always Busy (MCAB)(Yuri, Quick Transmigration)