Ning Xi's face darkened. To Gong Shangze, this was an arduous battle. Because his competition was not anyone else; it was himself.
"Don't worry, as long as you've done your best, that's enough. Even if you don't make it this time, there will be a next time and another next time. One day, you will definitely defeat your demons from the past. You have unlimited possibilities, while the other rival only has a pile of design drafts that will run out one day. There is nothing to be afraid of, Gong Shangze!"
Gong Shangze looked at the girl's shining eyes and felt recharged with gusto. He nodded at her confidently.
"Okay, rest well then. There's still a hard battle to fight tomorrow!"
The next day at the Golden Award venue.
As the highest honorary award of Chinese fashion design, the venue was decorated luxuriously and had a magical vibe to it.
The seats were hung a meter above the ground and the lights were divided into five colorful strobes, glowing onto the T-shaped stage that was inspired by Noah's Ark.
Passes to the competition were hard to get since everyone present was well-known within the fashion circle. Even Ning Xi received an invitation only because she was the owner of the studio which submission was shortlisted and not because she was a celebrity.
Ning Xi walked in with Gong Shangze and Han Momo, poised. Just a few steps into the venue, they found that the path ahead of them had been blocked.
The competition had yet to start, but the photographers and reporters were already crazily surrounding the hot designer highly anticipated to take home the award, David. The shutters of their cameras clicked away and they were scrambling to ask him questions.
"David, are you confident to win the award this time around? Everyone's saying that this Golden Award will definitely be yours!"
"We heard that the last Golden Award winner, Teacher Lee Ming, also predicted that you would take home the award! Is that true?"
"This time, there are many seniors from the entertainment circle present and a number of them are your fans. They are even wearing your designs here to support you today. Do you have anything to say about that?"
David looked overbearing and confident in his straight posture. Facing the reporters surrounding him, he looked calm as he answered, "Every design is my heartfelt work. Naturally, I am confident about them. However, it is, after all, a competition, so we still need to leave it to the judges' evaluations! As for Teacher Lee Ming, he is also a senior that I respect very much and I thank him for his compliments. And, of course, not forgetting all the love from the beautiful ladies!"
When they heard this, Ning Xi and Gong Shangze didn't react but Han Momo exploded, "Pfft! This person is so shameless! What heartfelt work? Whose heartfelt work is it really?"
When she was first hired, Han Momo did not know who Gong Shangze was. It was only after she saw his designs that she thought they looked familiar.
Due to the fact that plagiarizers were deemed the scum of all designers in the world of design, she could not help but harp on Gong Shangze copying David's style and other malicious things. She started to look down on Gong Shangze. Despite his assistant's negativity then, Gong Shangze did not rebut at all and he continued to design from dawn till dusk.
After interacting with him over some time, she slowly realized that something was not right. Gong Shangze was practically designing with his life at stake. That did not seem like what a plagiarizer would have done.
It was only after she bugged Ning Xi for a long time that she knew the ugly truth...
Gong Shangze persisted, "Even though I have tried my best, but the likelihood of us winning this time is quite low. The award is so important this time around. I am sure that David will definitely choose my favorite work."