༺ Consultation ༻
Two days later, the four of them gathered.
Jun-ho couldn’t meet their eyes and bowed his head slightly to greet them before sneaking a glance at Seo Ryu Shin and Seon Yu-ri.
‘Wow… A real actor.’
Jun-ho, who had always loved movies and dramas since he was young, couldn’t possibly not know them. Heesoo from <Paradise Diary> grew up just as beautiful as she was when she was young. And right in front of him was Seo Ryu Shin, who had been highly praised for his acting in <July>, surpassing even the actor Ji Seong-bin, whom he played as a child actor.
It was amazing that he thought of Yoomyeong as ordinary in the past, but now there was no discomfort upon seeing him with them.
Jun-ho handed out the result of two sleepless nights with trembling hands.
“You really did this in just two days… That’s impressive.”
“No, I’m sorry. The output is a bit rough…”
For the next 20 minutes, only the sound of paper flipping could be heard. Jun-ho was clutching the rolled-up script so tightly that it seemed like it would crumple. He didn’t think he had been this nervous, even just before receiving his college entrance exam results.
After Yoomyeong and Seo Ryu Shin finished reading, they remained silent, seemingly waiting to respect Seon Yu-ri’s opinion. Seon Yu-ri, with a furrowed brow, flipped through the read script here and there and finally slammed it shut.
“Yes… Is it not that good? I’m okay with criticism, so please give an honest review.”
Seon Yu-ri smiled faintly.
“It has a very different feel from Min Juran’s version, but the originality of the scenes is nice. Honestly, I see many novice aspects in the dialogue and transitions, but it’s fresh. Especially this part where Hyde transforms into Jekyll just once.”
“Can our actors handle this?”
Seon Yu-ri teased Ryu Shin and Yoomyeong playfully and upon seeing that, Yoomyeong seemed relieved. She really must have liked the script.
The task of transforming a work with an original source into one for performance.
The result can vary greatly depending on the adapter.
Only a portion of the entire content of a novel gets chosen for scenes, and the dialogues or situations for that moment are often entirely recreated by the adapter, drawing inspiration from the original work’s atmosphere.
< Jekyll and Hyde>, a classical literature piece with more psychological descriptions than dialogues, required Jun-ho to fill in many dialogues. His lack of experience was apparent in places where it felt lacking.
Nevertheless, as Seon Yu-ri mentioned, the script stood out for its originality. The details could be adjusted.
“Jun-ho, we might need to tweak some dialogues and scenes in collaboration with the actors and director. Is that okay?”
“Uh… Yes! Absolutely. But I’d like to be present during the adjustments. It would be a learning experience for me.”
“Would you consider joining our rehearsals? You could be registered as a guest member for Oedipus and observe the practice as a semi-director.”
Jun-ho’s face was filled with joy.
“I’d be truly grateful if you could do that! I’ll come to the practice room every day. I’ll keep revising the script as I observe.”
“Yes, It won’t be easy, but let’s adjust it live and create it together. We’re the ones who are thankful.”
Seon Yu-ri extended her hand.
Jun-ho eagerly took it with a radiant face.
* * *
Rococo F/W Season Up.
Designer Anz’s [Rococo] entered its photo release phase.
Even Yoomyeong, who was fully immersed in rehearsals, knew about it. It was the talk of the university.
During a brief visit to the store, Minhee explained the backstory in detail.
“The photoshoot turned out so well that they employed a daring strategy.”
“Do you remember ‘Sunyoung, I love you?’”
“Oh, of course.”
There was an advertisement that swept Korea in the year ’00.
Posters plastered across universities and alleyways throughout the nation bore no description, only the words, “Sunyoung-ah, I love you.” Speculation ran wild about its purpose, with many wondering if it was a declaration of love from a male student. People were in heated debates until they were caught off-guard ten days later.
It was an advertisement for a women’s portal site.
“They borrowed that idea, and Soo Yeon had a massive photo shoot and put up the pictures all over the university. The girl is so beautiful and the photos came out with such an atmospheric feel. Wouldn’t there have been a huge fuss about who she is? Some people even started collecting the different types of posters. Rumor has it that there are even people trading these posters online. Thanks to that, there have been many pre-orders for Rococo at editorial shops. It was a sensation.”
“Wow… that’s a huge success.”
“Your ‘back’ also became famous, right? Hehe. I want to go around boasting that we have that back model here.”
“Please restrain yourself.”
Even the male model who appeared only with his ‘back’ in Rococo photoshoots became a topic of conversation. People said one could tell he was handsome just by looking at his back.
Every time Yoomyeong came across those pictures while commuting to and from school, he turned his head in embarrassment. Whenever female students heatedly debated about ‘that back guy’ during breaks, he slyly wore his jacket to cover his back.
“Oh, speaking of which, didn’t Soo Yeon contact you?”
“Huh? I don’t even know her number.”
“Not long ago, Anz said that Soo Yeon asked for your contact information. When asked why, she simply said she had something to ask you, so he gave it to her.”
“Really? I haven’t received any call.”
“Did she fall for you that day? Hehe. Her gaze was quite intense. Maybe she got your number but hasn’t mustered the courage to call you yet?”
“Sister, remember what I said earlier?”
“Please restrain yourself.”
Minhee was about to slap Yoomyeong on the back in jest and was easily thwarted as he grabbed her wrist lightly.
‘Seol Soo Yeon asked for my number…’
For a moment, Yoomyeong recalled her face. The dramatic expression and sorrowful eyes.
Those eyes seemed to be longing for something.
He felt like he knew what she wanted to ask. However, whether she’d be able to gather the courage to reach out or not was uncertain.
‘She’ll contact me if she’s desperate.’
Yoomyeong quickly brushed off the emerging thought and turned his attention back to the script.
* * *
[Hello. This is Seol Soo Yeon, who worked with you on the Rococo photo shoot. I wonder if you remember me.]
A text arrived a week after that. It was the second week of October, two weeks after Yoomyeong had started practicing intensively with Jun-ho’s new script.
The text, which seemed to have taken a great deal of courage for her to send, received a prompt reply from Yoomyeong.
[Of course, I remember. Congratulations on the buzzworthy photo shoot. What’s up?]
[Ah, there’s something I’d like to ask you…]
[Feel free to ask anything.]
[Can I meet you in person to discuss it?]
Yoomyeong invited Soo Yeon to the university.
Apart from the issue that it was hard to make time due to his performance preparations, he could guess what she might be worried about and also because there was something he wanted to show her.
“Wow, look at that person…”
“Is that even a real person? Isn’t it CG?”
“Ah, it’s a celebrity. The model from that teaser photo shoot!”
The impact of a beauty making an appearance on campus was profound. The students, unfamiliar with her as they only knew her from the photo shoot, hesitated to approach her. However, the density of people around her kept increasing for some reason.
“You found the place well.”
Seeing the eyes pouring out at them, Yoomyeong hastily took off the baseball cap he was wearing and put it on her. It seemed she was still a newcomer and had no idea about her rising fame.
Only then did Soo Yeon take the sunglasses out of her bag as if realizing something and put them on, causing the attention around them to gradually disperse.
“Ah… I didn’t realize it. I’m sorry.”
“It’s alright. Want to grab a drink?”
Holding a can of 350 won coffee each from the vending machine, Yoomyeong and Soo Yeon sat on a quiet bench. The campus was gradually dressed in hues of red and yellow, and the sky was piercingly blue. It was autumn.
“You must be busy these days with the success of Rococo. You must be getting a lot of work, right?”
At her casual comment, Soo Yeon’s face darkened considerably.
Oops. He seemed to have hit a nerve right from the start.
“…There’s a lot of work, but I can’t immerse myself as I did back then, and I face issues with every project. Sometimes I even have contracts canceled… I was wondering, how did you do it back then? I tried drinking cola and even tried drawing a white spot in my head like back then, but it just doesn’t work…”
After hesitating for a while, Soo Yeon managed to gather her words. Her fingertips trembled.
After listening quietly to her words, Yoomyeong asked.
“Have you ever tried acting practice?”
Oedipus practice room.
Everyone’s mouths dropped open at the sight of the unfamiliar woman who entered with Yoomyeong. She didn’t look human.
“Yoomyeong, who is this… angel? Is she perhaps your younger sister?!”
Suho was the first to exclaim.
“They don’t share the same grade of genes, do they? Maybe she’s your master, Yoomyeong?”
Hye-Seon’s nonsensical joke made Soo Yeon burst into laughter.
And at that laughter, Suho was left dumbfounded.
“It’s unbelievable. An angel just laughed…”
“Bro, snap out of it.”
Laughing, Yoomyeong pushed Suho aside and sought permission from Yu-ri.
“Director, can she observe the practice?”
“Who is she?”
“Someone I know from outside. She’s aspiring to be an actress, but she’s feeling a bit lost. Watching others practice can help sometimes, you know.”
Yu-ri nodded. They don’t normally allow outsiders to observe, but considering the circumstances…
“Find a comfortable spot and watch. If you need to leave in between, you can do so quietly.”
Soo Yeon quietly took a seat, and the practice began.
‘They are all truly amazing.’
Actors moved their bodies, exchanging glances.
Next to their earnest eyes, beads of sweat dripped down.
That was pure passion.
Soon, the main rehearsal began.
Soo Yeon laid her eyes on the title of the script Yoomyeong lent to her.
It was one of the books she had read over and over in the small room she was confined to as a child: Jekyll and Hyde.
The main character standing in the center of the stage was that very man who once guided her into immersion.
The man’s position was right at the center, even among these serious actors. Soo Yeon found this deeply satisfying, as if she too had been acknowledged.
However, as he began his performance, her superficial admiration quickly crumbled.
“Dr. Lanyon, don’t you want to know? You have a choice. You can turn away from this situation and live your life as the naive and respected Dr. Lanyon, or you can confront this situation and personally confirm one of the universe’s secrets. What will be your choice? Hehe.”
His laughter was rough.
A sense of impending doom crawled up her body.
The warm and gentle man she knew seemed to have been washed away, and what stood on that stage was solely an actor.
He was utterly serious.
Watching the ensuing performances and the scenes created by Yoomyeong and the other members, she realized.
Her level of commitment was far less than theirs.
With a sense of determination, she bit her lip and quietly left the practice room.
* * *
As everyone was wiping their sweat and relaxing, one person quietly raised their hand.
“I will try again now.”
It was Ryu Shin.
Since losing the lead role two weeks ago, he had never once stopped thinking about the character. It was after seeing Shin Yoomyeong’s performance that he realized. It wasn’t merely about portraying ‘Jekyll’ and ‘Hyde’, but constructing a performance that stems from the same root yet reaches out in completely opposite directions.
His contemplation of the character became more intense than ever before.
Five days ago, a comet-like idea passed through Ryu Shin’s mind. After that, he dedicated every waking hour to ensure that the character was perfectly realized.
His angelically bright and pure Jekyll paired with the most fitting Hyde.
A devilishly bright and pure Hyde.
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