Hi guys im still alive unfortunately sorries for being away for so long ive been going in and out of the hospital these past few weeks lol -.- For those who might not have seen the announcement on discord, i will be updating more sporadically while im still under the weather and well be having a co-tl soon :>
By the time he arrived at the entrance to his neighbourhood after working overtime, the nearby shops were all dark, leaving only a lone row of street lamps standing along the road. The street lamps emitted a pale, weak light that was like a layer of white wax on the asphalt road.
At this time, the stainless steel gates were already closed so Qi Jing had to knock on the window of the guard room. Due to the nature of his work, there was a wide disparity between the times he returned home from work. Sometimes, it could be as early as 5 or 6 AM in the morning, or it could be as late as 2 or 3 AM in the middle of the night. Given the number of times this type of situation has happened, virtually all of the security guards working at his area of residence could recognise him.
“Working late again What time is it” The person on duty tonight rubbed his sleepy eyes and greeted Qi Jing as usual when he saw the latter through the blinds.
“Mid-Autumn Festival is almost here so there was a lot going on,” Qi Jing said with an apologetic smile.
He himself didnt even know exactly what time it was now.
Some of the work couldve actually been left till tomorrow, but Qi Jing gritted his teeth and pushed through it, and finished the task a day earlier. That way he wouldnt be too rushed on his business trip the day after tomorrow.
On his way to his apartment building, Qi Jing specially took out his phone to check the time. It was 1:26 AM; thats actually pretty early. He also tapped on his messages and found that his unsent message from the morning, “Im sick”, was still lying in the draft box with the recipient box empty till the end.
“No need, Ive already recovered,” Qi Jing muttered to himself with a forced smile on his face.
He quietly watched as the words got deleted while he pressed on the backspace before walking up the stairs.
He still hadnt gotten over the highly tensed state that he was in from working all night and couldnt feel a hint of sleepiness at the moment.
Qi Jing immersed himself into a tub of hot water and relaxed his limbs. He closed his eyes, scooping water with his palms and pouring it onto his face. If only the memories created during the day could turn into droplets of water on the ends of his hair, seeping out and dripping down until there was nothing left.
He had best take hold of the chance now while they were still water droplets and not a raging wave he wouldnt be able to stop.
He had best cut them short now.
Qi Jing leaned his forehead against the cold ceramic tiles with a tired look on his face. He furrowed his brows and quietly knocked his head against the wall a few times to get back to his senses. Then, he got out of the water, dried himself off, and returned to his room to turn on his personal computer.
There were many ways to distract himself and his favourite method was through voicing dramas. Because once he got into character, the person known as Qi Jing would cease to exist, blending into the storys plot, temporarily taking his mind off all these unnecessary things.
The sound designer of the《Trap》production crew really kept to her word.
He opened the QQ group that he didnt have the time to check yesterday and found that the group was in a celebratory mood. Turns out the DEMO for the first episode had already come out last night.
After he handed in his dry recordings the sound designer got up to speed. Coupled with clips of his exchange with Bronze Sparrow Terrace spreading like the wind, garnering rave reviews, Da Qiaos attitude towards him seemed to have improved a lot. The sound designer also expressed that he did pretty well, being able to perform in a pretty good condition when playing against Bronze Sparrow Terrace.
Sound designer – A lifetimes lock: Here to vomit a mouthful of blood. Im finally done fighting this troublesome little thing; the DEMO is out!!
Xiao Qiao of Bronze Sparrow Terraces harem: AaaaAAaaah! Really o(*////▽////*)q
Da Qiao of Bronze Sparrow Terraces harem: Bronze Sparrow finally has a new work! Thanks for your hard work, Locky!
Artist – Cloud chip cake: Congrats, congrats! Now I can finally start working on the posters, yeah! ～O(∩_∩)O
Publicity – Onion: Oh heck! The DEMO is out already! Ill have to start searching up materials to draft up the posts.
Producer – Rouge Flower: AaaAah, thats great! I can finally listen to the DEMO! Im so looking forward to it! Locky, your speed is too good to be true! TAT
Sound designer – A lifetimes lock: Hehe, of course! Bronze Sparrow-samas dramas have always been my top priority.
Da Qiao of Bronze Sparrow Terraces harem: Let us hear it!
Xiao Qiao of Bronze Sparrow Terraces harem: Let us hear it! Please email the group!
Script-writer – Puppet Show: Oh heck!! Youve already managed to churn out the DEMO, Locky Wow, god speed!! Also asking for you to mail the group!!
Director – Knives cutting in from four corners: Σ( °△°|||)︴Looks like well really be able to get it out during the National Day periodk2026;
Sound designer – A lifetimes lock: Un. If you need them to re-record anything, the crew can press the CVs for it over these few days, then once I change that in, it should be ready for release.
Director – Knives cutting in from four corners: Alright, Ill go listen to the DEMO and write out what needs to be changed right now so that I can quickly throw it to the two leads.
The source of this content is no//vel//bi/n[.//]net'
Sound designer – A lifetimes lock: Ill go send a group email then~
“Oh, such efficiency,” Qi Jing couldnt help but remark with a raised brow.
If he remembered correctly,k300J;Trapk300K;was expected to be done in three phases: parts one, two, and three. Just the script for the first episode alone totaled at around 14,000 words. No matter how much they cut the final product, it would still be at least forty to fifty minutes long.
Following what was said in the group chat, he opened the group email to download the DEMO file and the time displayed in the player was one hour and twelve minutes in total.
Although he wasnt familiar with the technical aspect of these things, he still had some basic understanding of how it was like for the sound designers in the circle. For such a long script, being able to produce a DEMO within a month was pretty impressive.
After clicking on the demo and listening to the first two acts, he finally understood why Rouge Flower would rather put up with it than offend the sound designer. As expected of a dab hand, her speed and quality are all top-notch.
Although the final effect between the two protagonists was different from what he understood, putting the original story aside and simply listening to it as a new story, it was also quite wonderful.
The efficiency of the director, Knives cutting in from four corners, was pretty high as well. The DEMO was just out yesterday and he had already received the notes for what needed to be changed this morning. Out of consideration for him, all the timings were clearly marked right down to the specific minutes and seconds. Ah, such good professional ethics.
Qi Jing skimmed through the contents and noticed that he performed fine in most parts and scenes hes asked to redo were mostly the ones where he plays against Bronze Sparrow Terrace. Especially the ones where the characters were in conflict.
The impact of the lines where he needed to roar or shout angrily was reduced because he used a more feminine 0.5 voice. Internal monologues that needed to show inner struggle sounded slightly stiff because the character had been modified. To maintain the uniformity of the character, he wasnt too strict with the quality.
Knives cutting in from four corners probably anticipated this because she sent him a message in advance before sending the notes for what needed to be changed. Many of her comments came from a place of feeling that the performance deviated too much from the original novel and not so much his sense of play, so he should decide whether or not to redo the parts “at his own discretion”.
Basically what she meant was that if being faithful to the original work would lower the compatibility between the two leads, he could choose to leave it as is.
In any case, at this moment, what he desperately needed was a script and a role that could let him calm down for a while and stop wandering needlessly in the 3D world.
He opened the recording software, adjusted the microphone, and started working on the parts that needed to be redone. For the scenes that require a more intense tone, Qi Jing decided to lower it slightly to about 0.6, abandoning the so-called “amorous” feeling and allowing the characters to be more in line with his original understanding. Since most of those lines are short, with many of them being at most only four or five words, such adjustments should be negligible to the listener.
The hard part was in the internal monologue.
By that scene, the plot had developed to a stage where the two characters have a deeper connection, transitioning from mere physical union to reciprocating their feelings for each other. In the story, because of a few words from the policeman, his character was starting to have thoughts of breaking away from the underworld. However, while on one hand, he didnt want to betray his benefactor, whos also his superior in the Mafia, and ruin the lives of his subordinates, on the other, he was completely enraptured by the Gong. At the same time that he torments the other party out of habit, his heart was filled with both the joy of being able to be close to one other and the despair of not being able to love each other completely.
The success or failure of this scene is largely determined by how well he expressed that conflict and dilemma.
The director pointed out that the few words he muttered in his heart in front of the policeman were missing that something. He himself felt the same way after listening to the DEMO.
While the tone generally sounded about right, when one took a closer look into the details, it appeared rather inferior and gave the feeling that its fake. Its not genuine enough and was unable to move the heart of the listeners.
“If you know that, then you shouldnt appear before me again.”
He redid the first line immediately after listening to the DEMO. On the editing window, waveform graphics could be seen as the recording timing increased second by second.
Qi Jing pressed pause and played it to have a listen. Feeling that there was little difference from the DEMO, he deleted it with a frown and started over.
“If you know that, then you shouldnt appear... Ah, no, thats not it.”
Then, he recorded it a second time, then the third and the fourth... Somehow, the more he listened and re-recorded, the more he felt like he couldnt quite grasp the tone.
He repeated this process of recording then deleting over and over again. Every time the waveform diagram appeared on the screen, it was selected and deleted in the blink of an eye. While some CVs liked to record everything and then hand it over to the director for editing, he preferred to keep two to three of the ones he felt were the best and discarded the rest.
The moment the first word left his mouth, Qi Jings index finger had already pressed pause. He was starting to get a little agitated. Qi Jing shook his head at himself before going back to delete everything. In his mind, it clearly felt like he was just a hairs breadth from grasping the right emotion, but the moment he opened his mouth, it would always take a sharp turn, veering further and further away from the direction.
He decided to turn off the DEMO audio.
Casting aside the image from the DEMO, overturning it, and starting from scratch, he began to recall the scene from the beginning of the script, imagining himself in it.
Thats right, it was in the wee hours of the morning, the music had stopped and the guests had left, and the nightclub he ran had closed down. And there he was drinking at the bar, all alone, looking all depressed. It was dark outside, so dark one wouldnt be able to see their outstretched hand while the interior of the club was illuminated by this deep, dizzying burgundy light. Fine bits of the sounds around him gradually poured in—such as the sound of the ice moving in his glass, such as the faint sound of jazz playing softly in the background, or the sound of footsteps coming from the depths of the shadows.
That man had, by some unknown means, wilfully invaded into his territory again. At a time and in a place where he shouldnt be.
Both in real life and in his mind.
At this time, he was already tipsy from the alcohol in his system and his vision was starting to blur. There wasnt an ounce of fear in his heart, he just felt inexplicably fed up.
“What are you doing here”
His lips parted slightly and with a cold smile, he sent out a message of eviction loud and clear without uttering a single word.
The other party did not respond.
“Ive said it before... I wont leave the organisation, let alone betray it. You should be thankful I didnt send a bullet right through you the other time. And now, you straight-up appear at my doorstep without even bringing a gun. Do you think... Ill let you off again”
With a hint of drunkenness, he walked toward the other party.
He was tottering in his drunken state, even the way he talked was somewhat broken and his breath was heavy. Despite this, he was like an agitated porcupine with its spikes erect and the intimidation in his voice could not be overlooked.
As he recalled to this point with his eyes closed, the two lines just now came out quite naturally and Qi Jing felt like he could catch the feeling he wanted to express.
Very good, and now, for the part hes been stuck on for so long—
“I know you wont.”
Suddenly, a voice rang out in the scene inside his head.
Different from the DEMO, the voice of another person, presenting another emotion. It was the voice of Geese Fly North.
He was caught off guard by how it suddenly cut into his thoughts with no warning at all.
Qi Jing subconsciously opened his eyes but the scene in his mind did not stop and instead continued playing.
It was as if the thousands of lines before him had been removed into space to be recombined until they merged to form the image of a policemans resolute expression that contained a hint of pain from the script.
Before this, he had also tried to visualise the character. But this time, the image of the other party had become much clearer, so clear that he could project as a certain someone in reality.
Qi Jing was in a trance, his throat a little dry but the words somehow flowed out of his lips. “If you know that...”
Even though he was clearly trying to maintain the cold smile on his face, the moment he tried to curl the corner of his lips upward, he couldnt do it, the smile wouldnt appear. Rather than questioning the other party, it was more of a murmur, filled with both expectation and disappointment. And his heart was both expectant and despaired.
“Then you shouldnt appear before me again.”
Thats right, thats the feeling he was trying to capture.
That was the feeling of conflict that he wanted to express.
Hes ready to record now.
With him breaking through his bottleneck, Qi Jing finished up with the other parts that needed to be reworked on in one breath. Then, he saved it and sent it back to the director, Knives cutting in from four corners, for her to select and cut out the parts to be used.
Taking off his headphones, he stared blankly at the script for a long time.
Perhaps it was because he listened to that version too many times when trying to shape his character, the situation where he accidentally ends up flashing back to another CV had happened from time to time. In order not to be affected by his initial impression, Qi Jing even specially went back and listened to the audio with Bronze Sparrow Terrace from the other day. He listened to it over and over again until he got used to it before he officially started recording.
The strange thing though, was that while he was listening to anothers voice, a completely unrelated person actually came to mind.
Voice acting was supposed to help him temporarily forget about the happenings in the 3D world, but instead, it actually brought out the emotions he was trying to grasp for recording when that person came to mind.
This is ridiculous.
Really, too ridiculous...
Qi Jing restlessly closed all the programs and turned off his computer screen. Under the dim light the lamp emitted, he saw his pale face reflected on the surface of the screen, studying the traces of his heart wavering through his eyes. He couldnt entirely place the blame on the characterisation as a truly professional CV should be able to remain unaffected by external affairs.
“Qi Jing,” he admonished in a low voice as he stared directly at himself in the reflection, “Dont be silly.”
Dont be silly.
Itd be too terrifying if even voice acting, his little safe haven, had been encroached.
When was the last time I experienced a similar feeling Probably college days I think.
That was when he first came to realise his sexual orientation. Back then, he hadnt experienced much of how society was like and held a simple, optimistic attitude towards many things. He liked being frank and outspoken. With regards to the looks people gave him, he simply thought of them as people who walked a different path from him, as long as he persevered, there would always be a turning point.
Unlike now, back then, he did not have any particular hobbies to spend his time on, to fully occupy his leisure time in his private life.
Also, he had chosen to start.
Now, he had learned his lesson about the harshness of the so-called reality and the price of making such rash decisions.
To this day, those “costs” continue to consume his life.
He was no longer a teenager, ignorant to the world. He was now independent, strong, and free. He could live perfectly fine even on his own.
He did not want to see even a one in a million chance of him repeating the same mistakes.
The probability could only be zero.