Although Gu Yiliang and I are separated by only one celebrity tier, the number of fans who came to visit us at work were equally matched.
The moment the two groups of fans caught sight of the support items in each other’s hands, they instantly widened their distance at a rapid rate, conscientiously dividing themselves into two masses on either side of the pathway. Their unified gazes stared intently at the entrance and no one from the same group of fans pushed or shoved each other. When their gazes interlocked with the adversary’s eyes, they didn’t behave like they had daggers drawn like on the internet.
Both sides had people carrying various kinds of equipment to record the whole segment. Since their biases would be the ones paying for it if they stepped out of line, everyone was fully aware of embodying the high standards of their own fan circles, attempting to oppress their rivals with it.
This was a battle without smoke.
In the end, Gu Yiliang came out with me looking all cheerful and lively.
Thus somehow plunging the entire scene into a state of awkwardness.
“We only have thirty minutes? Let me know when time’s up?” I asked.
Gu Yiliang nodded. “Okay. Give me some of your snacks. I didn’t prepare any.”
He can still botch his fans in their presence?
So I gave him half my snacks in front of everyone.
I greeted the Pretty Yans  and handed the snacks in my embrace to a familiar big fan of mine. “It’s probably not enough for everyone, so maybe you can just open them up and share them on the way back?”
“Sure! No biggie!” The little girl easily found a bag and packed everything up quickly before she lifting two bags up to me. “We’ve already given the food and drinks prepared for the production team to the staff members. What’s in here are all the presents the Pretty Yans have prepared for you. The green bag contains fresh fruits and desserts so please remember to eat them on time. Don’t leave it for later or else it will go bad. The blue bag is has a bit of everything like presents and letters. Just take a look yourself…”
I laughed uncontrollably. Every time I meet them, it feels as though I’m seeing my own mom when I was in boarding school. The only exception was that they didn’t tell me to get along with everyone and warn me not to get bullied.
“…Please get along with the staff members.” The little girl shot a glance at Gu Yiliang before anxiously lowered her voice into a soft whisper. “Your adversary… did he bully you?”
I choked. “…”
I called out to him, “Gu Yiliang!”
Gu Yiliang turned around to look at me in confusion.
I said, “Gimme a smile!”
And Gu Yiliang threw me a dazzling and bewitching smile.
Turning around, I was greeted by the look of astonishment from my big fan as well as a fragmented view of the group’s expressions. I smiled and said, “Got it now? We’re getting along just fine.”
Seeing how they would still be trapped in a state of shock for a while longer, I fished out my phone, swiped up Alipay, and said, “How much did you guys spend this time?”
As soon as the majority of them recovered their senses, voices surrounded me at once to stop me in my tracks. “The funds are sponsored by the Pretty Yans who are working! None of the students paid for anything.”
Alright then. I pulled my sleeve up. “There’s a lot of autographs to sign, right? Please be quick since we only have a thirty-minute window.”
Like performing a magic trick, one by one, they materialized their handheld banners, fans, and posters out of thin air…
I let my muscle memory take over, signing the items as I chatted with them for a while.
While we were talking, my big fan suddenly tugged my sleeves, looking all confused and mysterious. She was gesturing for me to lower my head.
I slightly hung my head low in puzzlement, only to hear her softly whisper as a testament to my ear, “…Niangzi?”
How is it that a brat with thick eyebrows and round eyes like you is betraying the revolution?!
The situation was not looking good right now. Shipping and having the actual people sealing the deal were two completely different things. If things went badly, it could destroy careers! I wouldn’t dare to make light of Gu Yiliang’s career.
With a vacant expression and looking all muddled, I used three fingers to cover my lips and sang in a low voice, “A ha?”
Thank you, Phoenix Legend! Thank you, Lover Temptation ! Thank you for helping me deceive them! I sighed in relief.
I was writing ‘To’ on the item when Gu Yiliang called me. “Can you come over here for a while?”
I took a glimpse at the Pretty Yans and they were using their eyes and lip movements, one after another, to quickly drive me to his side. They looked so frantic that the only thing they hadn’t done yet was to physically shove me toward him.
Why do I have this nagging feeling that I’ve been sold out by my own mom?
I returned the pen and autographs to them before skipping towards him. “What’s up?”
Gu Yiliang smiled. “They want a picture of us together.”
He put his hand over my shoulder and I unconsciously threw mine around his waist.
We smiled together at the camera.
This was actually the first picture we’d taken together in the three years that we’d known each other.
There was still an underground big fan of the Niangzi Army watching me over there. I was going to release him as soon as the picture was taken, but the camera was flashing at us nonstop, the shutter clicking like rain beating on window panes. I couldn’t find the right timing to do so.
He glanced at me apologetically with his tender eyes. I returned a nonchalant smile as I stared into his deep-set eyes.
The moment our gazes interlocked with each other, a piece of my shipping soul broke apart. As I watched this scene unfold before my eyes from another perspective, I was very aware that should this picture get sent out, the Niangzi discussion board was going to explode.
As such, Gu Yiliang hooked his arm around my neck and led me towards the big fan who was currently taking our picture. I watched on blankly as he picked out two pictures and requested the fan to directly transfer it to him.
In the picture where we flashed a smile at the camera, my lips broke into a wide grin as my eyes arched while he was smiling with his mouth closed.
In the picture where we were looking into each other’s eyes, there seemed to be thousands of words congealed in our gazes.
I was decked out in a steel grey outfit while he was donning a brick-red outfit. I was right yesterday. Our colors match well with each other.
At this very moment, I knew deep down that he would be posting these pictures soon.
And it was precisely at this very moment when I realized, deep down, that Gu Yiliang was the true Rio Niangzi master.
 Pretty Yans: name for Wei Yanzi’s fan club.
 –Niangzi! –A ha! are actually two lines from the lyrics of Lover Temptation (郎的诱惑) by Phoenix Legend. So MC is using the song to pretend that he doesn’t know about the Niangzi ship~