Exclusive Rights to An Online Voice Actor - novelonlinefull.com
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Please read the pop-up translator’s notes _(´ཀ`」 ∠)_
It was late into the night.
He couldn’t remember how he fell asleep. All he could remember was waking up twice in the few hours that he was asleep, setting a new record low for his average sleep quality.
The first time he woke up was to the sound of a resident from downstairs humming an out of tune melody while cooking. That family was probably having Szechuan style braised pork for dinner based on the tingly and numbing smell coming from the direction of the sound.
The second time he woke up was from his stomach cramping up and had to get up to search through the drawers for the medicine to curb it.
Qi Jing thought to himself that if he went to voice act for a sickly character right now, it would surely sound very realistic.
After being out for half a month, the foods in his fridge were basically inedible. However, it was not like he just order in at 2 AM in the morning. Qi Jing felt his world spinning when he got up; it was probably due to low blood sugar. After taking a shower, he dug out the only packets of biscuits he had at home and ate them as a form of temporary recharge.
He turned off the air-con and opened the windows to let the air in.
There were hardly any stars to be found in the night skies above the city and tonight was no exception. It was all just a patch of endless darkness, perfect for all kinds of negative thoughts to fill the mind.
Like for example, the time when he just came out of the closet.
For example, the unease he felt when he became aware of his s.e.xual orientation.
Though compared to back then, the current him had gotten over it. The only thoughts that would appear in his head were laughable, like this one: a time like this where one could virtually hear a pin drop falling, without any disturbances; it’s perfect for recording. Perhaps that was the reason why he still stuck with his hobby of voice acting no matter how busy he was in real life. There was a sense of belonging which closed the gate on all these negative thoughts.
In comparison to him, his computer was sound asleep.
Qi Jing actually felt a flash of jealousy towards his computer.
The window to the QQ chat was still opened. Qi Jing decided to reply to all his private messages first before getting ready to scan through the chat history of the groups he was in.
Typically speaking, a voice actor wouldn’t go through every single message in the group chat, but he would.
It was in his name after all. He perfectly embodied the meaning of a talkaholic.
His parents clearly had a lot of foresight when they gave him that name as he was indeed someone with a love for words and chatting. Usually, due to his vast knowledge which spanned across various fields and him collecting news materials as part of his job, there was a never-ending list of topics that he could talk about. Even if he wasn’t present at the point in time, he would often check the chat records afterward.
What’s interesting was not the gossip itself.
What’s interesting was him personally opening the pandora’s box when everyone thought he didn’t know. Oh, their confounded expressions.
Just as he was about to go through them one by one, from top to bottom, he suddenly received a notification. There was a beep alongside the bouncing group icon at the bottom right corner of his screen.
Group Name: Gradually inching towards quitting the community
This wasn’t a group chat for production crews, but one of his few groups dedicated to casual small-talk with the friends he’s made within the circle. Plus, the admin of the group was a close friend of his.
He raised an eyebrow at the notification and moved his cursor to open it.
Ninth lady: Ever since I joined the time-difference gang, I always miss the times when everyone is online. Such torture ┭┮﹏┭┮
Rolling ball of Meows: I’m here too, Ninth ┭┮﹏┭┮
Ninth lady: Meows! I’m guessing you’re burning the midnight oil, working on your designs again, aren’t you?
Rolling ball of Meows: (Plopped onto the floor) Yes… the life of a design intern is too hard for you to comprehend…
Ninth lady: Pfft, all those that do design have a tough life.
Rolling ball of Meows: What time is it over there?
Ninth lady: Almost noon.
Rolling ball of Meows: Pfft, you have the time to come online in the middle of the day? Don’t you have cla.s.s?
Ninth lady: It’s the summer holidays over here, pfft. I’m currently helping out around the lab for my Boss’ research. But the Boss is away for a seminar and I’m done running all the tests so I’m quite free right now.
Rolling ball of Meows: I see. Everyone else is asleep. Looks you’re the only one who can accompany me here, Ninth (′へ`、 )
Ninth lady: If there’s anyone else online, please tweet.
Don’t ask for my return date: Tweet.
Ninth lady: !!
Rolling ball of Meows: !!
Ninth lady: Heck! You’re back, Return date!
Don’t ask for my return date: Un, I just woke up ╮(￣▽￣”)╭
Rolling ball of Meows: Return date!! Please send hugs! Send comfort! Send some welfare! (o >__<)
Don’t ask for my return date: (Smiles) There, there. Picks up the ball of meows and puts back into the basket. Even b.a.l.l.s of fluff have to have a ball of fluff’s work etiquette. Hurry back to work.
Rolling ball of Meows: Runs away in tears ┭┮﹏┭┮
Ninth lady: You just woke up?? What kind of messed up sleep schedule is this Σ(°△°|||)︴
Don’t ask for my return date: (Looks to the sky) My sleep schedule has been messed up for many years…
Ninth lady: I really regret it…
Don’t ask for my return date: Stop!! Hold it right there and don’t say any more (((￣__￣o )~
Back then when he first got to know Ninth lady, she was still an undergraduate student in China. She had plenty of time on her hands and would often spend it working on dramas. Although she was relatively young within the circle, she was more experienced and senior compared to many others. The first few audio dramas that Qi Jing did were all produced by her along with his junior as the scriptwriter. Their names would often appear on the same credits scene and would eventually even come to be known as the ‘Three Seven Nine’ combo.
However, Ninth lady told him that it would be hard for a CV to improve if he stuck with the same crew.
And so, Qi Jing no longer limited his options to just his friend circles. He was willing to experiment and would pick up scripts as long as it interested him. Though of course, provided that the voice required wasn’t beyond him.
Ever since Ninth lady headed to the West to study abroad, she could no longer keep up with the time and energy required in the current community to put out new shows. She’s basically in a half-retired state. She didn’t have any new projects planned and the only projects she had in her hands were two longer serial audio dramas which she was slowly trying to finish. Most of the STAFF he got to know from the earlier days were much like Ninth lady, busy with their lives and didn’t have many new plans in the making.
Hence, it was quite accurate for the name of their group to be called, k2018;Gradually inching towards quitting the community’.
Sometimes, if a few of them were online, they’d usually have casual small-talk, asking how they’re doing, grumbling about their superiors, basically cordial chats about anything under the sun.
Ninth lady: A few days ago, someone kept knocking at my door, asking if I could contact you. I told her I’m from the time-difference gang, there’s nothing I can do…
Don’t ask for my return date: I can see that happening… When I came back from work and opened my QQ, I felt like I suffered from some internal trauma just from the sheer number of messages.
Ninth lady: I really regret it… I don’t even dare tell anyone that the famous ‘G.o.d of Playing Dead’ was brought in by me.
Don’t ask me for my return date: Pfft, wait a minute, when did I become G.o.d-level?
Ninth lady: Well, putting voice acting aside, you’re pretty G.o.dly at playing dead =。=
Rolling ball of Meows: Haha, peeking out to interject, I think there are actually quite a lot of people who like Return date. There are quite a few CV recommendation lists with your name on it. You can already be considered as a well-liked CV~
Don’t ask me for my return date: (Laughs) Please, I’m just a little n.o.body, forever transparent.
Rolling ball of Meows: Please, you’re no n.o.body, it’s just that you have too little works where you’re one of the main leads which is why your presence seems very low ┭┮﹏┭┮
Don’t ask me for my return date: Because I really don’t have the time.
Ninth lady: Plus you’re picky.
Don’t ask me for my return date: I’m not that picky. It’s just that if the plot or the lines are too embarra.s.sing that it makes me 囧 I will definitely burst out laughing when recording XDDD
Ninth lady: Oh yeah, speaking of scripts, did you accept that mafia drama from Rouge? She even came to me to urge you to do a recording, shamelessly doing all sorts of stunts and acting cute. She seemed so pitiful, pfft. Rouge said that she’s sent the script to your inbox since a long time ago. Just give her a reply if you see it.
Don’t ask me for my return date: I have too many unread emails… Give me some time to organise it a bit _(:з」∠)_
In Qi Jing’s QQ inbox, he had special labels set up for drama related mails. These labels include “Producer’s invitations”, “Accepted dramas”, “Retakes”, “Posting drama announcements” and “Others”.
He had the habit of organising the unread mails into the various categories based on the subject t.i.tle first before reading them. Then, he would also add them into the list on Excel with the details such as the drama name and date he received the email to make it more convenient for him to record in sequence. If there’s a crew that needed his recordings very urgently, he would star that email. And would try to make time to record when he’s out on business trips for news interviews.
Rouge Flower was a rookie producer. She’s a student with quite a few ideas up in her mind. She’s currently looking to cast him as the Shou in the modern drama about the relationship between a policeman and a mafioso.
Don’t ask me for my return date: I found the email. It’s the one called《Trap》right?
Ninth lady: Pfft, yeah, that’s the one. I’ve read the original work, the development of the plot in the later part of the story is actually pretty good. It’s just that there’ll probably be a lot of S.M scenes at the front. I never thought you would take on a drama like that.
Don’t ask me for my return date: Haha, that’s because people rarely ask me to voice Shou characters.
Ninth lady: Pfft, that’s the only reason?
Rolling ball of Meows: Puahaha! Return date is gonna voice a Shou? Then they’ll have to find a Gong with a 0.8 and above strong and intimidating Emperor-cla.s.s sounding Gong voice to overpower you!
Ninth lady: (Facepalm) There are already so little Gongs within the circle, yet she wants to force a Gong to become a Shou? Oh my goodness.
Rolling ball of Meows: Actually, there are quite a number of Gongs, but there are few with that pompous, shrewd playboy voice like Return date~
Don’t ask for my return date: I’m too restricted by the way my voice sounds…
Rolling ball of Meows: Haha, it’s very distinct! (*￣▽￣*)
Ninth lady: Pfft, it’s actually not that good to be too distinct, you end up being tied down by all these restrictions and fetters.
Don’t ask for my return date: I know right? I often receive emails asking if I can take on the drama, then when I open it up, the characters I receive are basically all those devilishly charming playboys with principles that spend money like water. Other than courting the little Shou, the only thing they know how to say is, “Ah, the weather has gotten cold, let’s bankrupt the w.a.n.g Group” or something of the like.
Ninth Lady: Devilishly charming playboys with principles! HAHAHAHA! (Pounding on the table)
Rolling ball of Meows: Let’s bankrupt the w.a.n.g Group! HAHAHA I’m going to die laughing! Save me!
Don’t ask for my return date: ╮（￣▽￣”）╭
In the online voice acting world, the first impression people can have of you is your voice.
Qi Jing’s voice could basically be summarised in four phrases—s.e.xy, elegant, rich second generation and Gong.
Even Qi Jing was kind of embarra.s.sed to say that he’s just an ordinary reporter working in a public inst.i.tution. His monthly salary was so low it could lower the average monthly income of the working cla.s.s.
“Don’t take away people’s joy of fantasising.”
That was something that the few people who know the truth can agree to.
Qi Jing could count the number of shows he’s been in with him as the one of the leads with one hand. If he included his other roles as the supporting characters or minor characters with barely a few lines, he’s done dozens of dramas in the past three years. But if someone were to make a compilation of all the roles he’s acted in, they would find out that they were all virtually the same.
In period dramas: Emperor X5, various princes, dukes, royalty, etc X16. Going down the ranks, the various ministers X9, rich merchants, and sons from distinguished families X4.
In modern dramas: More than half of it were presidents, managers or directors and the rest of it were all nightclub owners.
That’s right, nightclub owners.
And in the script for the new drama that Rouge Flower sent him, he lived up to everyone’s expectations and opened yet another nightclub.
“Do I really seem like the type to open nightclubs?” Qi Jing muttered to himself while leaning onto the backrest of his chair and scrolling on his mouse. After reading through the script from beginning to the end, he couldn’t help but laugh.
Qi Jing had actually roughly read through the novel prior to accepting the role. The drama kept the same settings of the story which was set in the underworld. The character he plays manages a nightclub under the Mafia. On the surface, it’s a place of entertainment to earn funds for the Mafia’s activities, but in reality, it also serves as a location for illegal transactions.
The other lead in the story was a policeman, who’s in charge of keeping an eye on this nightclub. So naturally, the policeman would come to have various interactions with his character.
Simply put, this story had been accurately summed up by its tags: two strong leads, police x criminal, love-hate relationship, angsty love story.
Just as Ninth lady mentioned, the first episode opens with three acts and there really was one scene with S.M.
In one of those listicles compiling the styles of various CVs, his voice was once evaluated as “n.o.ble and elegant with a hint of sc.u.mmy feel to it”. Thus, even though he hadn’t really voiced many dramas with S.M in them, in theory, he should fit perfectly into the archetype. However, the thing was, he had only done the Gong perspective for the dramas with S.M, this will be the first time he’s doing it from the Shou perspective.
In the invitation letter from Rouge Flower, she specifically emphasised, “Please use your max Gong aura to release all the phermones!”
And at the end of the email, she also added a long chain of emoticons with sparkly eyes to express her infinite expectations for him.
—It somehow felt kinda amazing, though he didn’t quite get it.
Qi Jing gave her a brief reply and also explained why he went missing for half a month.
Other than that, since the production crew wished for him to go onto YY to listen to the Director going through the scenes with him before the official start of the recording process. They want him to run through some scenes with the other voice actor and get a feel of their dynamic. So he was thinking of asking the producer to arrange the meeting as soon as possible, preferably during these few days while he still has some breathing s.p.a.ce. Otherwise, he doesn’t know how long they’ll have to wait before he has the time.
There was still some time before the sun came up so he quickly did the recording for dramas with a few lines or those that needed his recordings more urgently, and responded to all the crews all at once.
All of them would probably be so moved that he would receive a bunch of crying emoticons with tears rolling in streams down their face like this, ‘TT_TT’.
Just as he was about to turn off his computer and go down to get some breakfast, Rouge Flower’s QQ profile picture lit up right when he moved his cursor onto the ‘shut down’ b.u.t.ton.
Rouge Flower: AAaaaah what did I just see!! Return date-sama!! You’ve returned!! TAT
“Pfft,” a burst of laughter accidentally escaped his lips and he started doubling over in front of his computer for a while. He had been recording for three hours just now so the corners of his mouth were a little stiff. This was precisely the exercise he needed to loosen up his facial muscles.
Alright, although it wasn’t ‘TT_TT’ kind of thick noodle tears, but it was also a type of noodle tear. Let’s just call it thin noodle tears.
Don’t ask for my return date: How early of you ^＿^
Rouge Flower: Awoooo I have a habit of checking my QQ while lazing around in bed… (Covers face in embarra.s.sment)
Don’t ask for my return date: So sorry for holding back the production crew for so long, the 3D world is really too tough.
Rouge Flower: No! Problem! It’s good enough that you replied! /(ㄒoㄒ)/~~
Don’t ask for my return date: With regards to doing a test-run of the scenes, I hope Ms Rouge can find a time within these few days. Due to the nature of my work, I’m not sure when’s the next time I have to leave. I’m afraid I may have to leave again after two days.
Rouge Flower: Roger that!! Most of us are students so it’s quite easy for us to find time. It’s just that it may be a little harder to arrange with Gong-kun, but I’ll ask.
Don’t ask for my return date: Ok, thanks for your hard work (づ￣ 3￣)づ
Rouge Flower: (≧//v//≦) Sama is actually acting cute!! Ah, my eyes have been blessed!! Oh right, can I add you into the group with the rest of the crew?
Don’t ask for my return date: Haha, sure.
Qi Jing realised that the ladies within the circle all had one thing in common—their super-fast fingers.
His message had only just been sent out and he already received a prompt from the system, the invitation for him to join the QQ group, which read: Your friend Rouge Flowers has invited you to join the group “《Trap》Production Crew”.
He didn’t think there would be this many people online so early in the morning, he had clearly underestimated the ratio of the students, who are always on their phones, in the community.
Producer – Rouge Flower: Ladies, come on out and welcome Return date-sama! ~(≧▽≦)/~
Publicity – Onion: Holy heck!
Designer –Cloud chip cake: Holy heck!
Script-writer – Puppet Show: Holy heck!【Actually I wanted to say, ‘Pounce on him!”, but I can’t mess up the formation!】
Director – Knives cutting in from four corners: I’m awake! Return date-greatgreat mua! ㄟ(≧3≦)ㄏ
Producer – Rouge Flower: Pfft, Knife cuts, you messed up the formation~
Don’t ask for my return date: Haha, just call me Return date, you don’t have to add those ‘greatgreat’ or ‘bigbig’ or whatever.
Script-writer – Puppet Show: Saying what “great big” so early in the morning, huhu you’re making me shy… o(*≥▽≤)ツ
Publicity – Onion: Pfft! Stop it, Puppet!
Producer – Rouge Flower: Stop it, Puppet! +1 【So annoying, but my mind drifted off in that direction as well】
Don’t ask for my return date: Sorry, it’s because I voiced too many Gongs, I got used to it. ╮(￣▽￣”)╭
Script-writer – Puppet Show: Save me!! My lord, are you acting cute??
Director – Knives cutting in from four corners: He’s definitely acting cute!
Designer – Cloud chip cake: Acting cute with a super Gong aura! ><
Producer – Rouge Flower: Super Gong aura +1
Publicity – Onion: Super Gong aura +2
Script-writer – Puppet Show: Super Gong aura +3
Director: Knives cutting in from four corners: Super Gong aura +10086… But I have to remind you that you’re voicing a Shou here~
Producer – Rouge Flower: (Covers mouth and smiles)
Designer – Cloud chip cake: (Covers mouth and smiles)
Script-writer – Puppet Show: (Laughs wickedly)
Don’t ask for my return date: (Smiles) Is your Gong lead in this group as well?
Producer – Rouge Flower: Not… yet… I’ve been contacting Bronze Sparrow Terrace-sama through Weibo DMs. I haven’t managed to add him on QQ. I plead guilty, I know I’m a s.h.i.tty producer… TAT
Bronze Sparrow Terrace?
Qi Jing was a little dumbfounded by what he just saw.
Wasn’t that guy a pretty legendary CV?