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Kill the Lights Chapter 47

Chapter 12.4


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Kill the Lights by Jangryang

Proofreader/Editor: Kaima, Hwarang

“……”

Mason was holding a coffee cup and walking by an electronics store, when he paused to watch a TV screen inside, playing something. Then turned his head and continued walking down the street.

While strolling on the street, he felt people’s strange stares following him wherever he went, which he hadn’t felt until last week. Whether he was falling or had fallen, Haley had always been under the scrutiny of other people. Once there was a time when he was world famous, but afterwards when he wasn’t popular anymore, he still managed to film dramas or movies, just to show his face. And did he invite many troubles? Of course he did, and it was hard for those who lived in Beverly Hills to not know him.

And so, wherever he went there were still some stares following him, not just because he was a celebrity, but also out of dislike, hatred and annoyance. Sometimes people who looked like they were gay would stare at him with interest, but most of the gay community hated Haley.

People always didn’t hide their unpleasantness, and Mason received those placidly. What about the intense stares? When he went to war, everyone looked at each other like that too. Even the bullets flew back and forth, and exchange of stares were just only affectionate and warm. And Mason was the type that didn’t care about other people’s stares. He was an insensitive and indifferent person.

But even he had started to care about the stares he was receiving these days. Well, maybe not as much, but how people looked at him had definitely changed.

It happened after the drama ‘Clue’ had aired, which he had filmed one month ago. Tony brought some popcorn and pizza so they can watch the drama together, but he couldn’t watch most of it because he was dozing off after a work out.

Mason was just worrying ‘when will this body get healthy, what if healthiness is just what you were born with, and Haley’s body will never get healthy, do I have to live forever in a body that feels like it’s going to die after a work out?’ He had dozed off but woke up with a start to Tony clapping loudly.

Tony cried and mumbled, “God, thank you. Thank you!” He was moving his hands in a strange fashion that neither looked like a prayer nor a praise.

Mason thought Tony was just overreacting as usual, but the next day the director of ‘Clue’ called.

He said he was sorry and asked him to appear in his next drama.

After he hung up on that call, Mason got few more calls from places he didn’t know. He didn’t know them anyway, so he didn’t answer, but Haley’s acquaintances, who didn’t even call after Haley woke up from dead, sensibly felt something about yesterday’s drama and started to contact him.

Real’s director, Vick Procter, acted more desperately after watching that drama. He kept nagging Mason to sign the new contract as if someone was going to steal him right away. “I found you, didn’t the director from ‘Clue’ already fire you?” He held out his hands almost like begging and handed him the contract.

Tony was nagging too, next to Mason and asked with an almost crying face, ‘Why wouldn’t you want to do it?’

‘Didn’t you say I’m gonna be filming only for two days, for fifty thousand dollars?’

‘Didn’t you say it might even last only a day?’ Mason couldn’t understand why he was asking such an obvious question. If they filmed more for what was supposed to be a fifty thousand dollar deal, didn’t it mean he is less than what they bargained for?

He agreed because of the tempting offer, but now they wanted to extend the scenes. For Mason, who didn’t want to be a successful celebrity, it was not a pleasing deal at all.

Didn’t Vick say, ‘You’ll become a top star, and I’ll become a rich man’? –Does that even make sense?

Mason wanted more to be a rich man than a top star. What can you do being a top star?

‘Will they give me more money if I film more? How much more would they pay?’

Mason sounded like he was nitpicking. Based on his calculations, if he films for a month, he will make 750 thousand dollars. It was impossible to earn that much money with any kind of work. Just as expected, Tony and the Director’s face got a little dark.

‘No well…., of course we can’t give a lot….’

‘Liz, your name is…. not like before…..’

Mason thought of course, so what if his name was not like before? It’s not as if they were going to pay him a million dollars?

On the other hand, Vick was counting with his fingers and asked, ‘but if you calculated like that, wouldn’t a million be okay too?’

‘Look, if it’s 50 thousand for two days and say, we cram the filming within a month, then it’ll be 750 thousand dollars for a month, right? But if you want one million then it’s… No. I’m sorry….’

‘Of course this kind of calculation doesn’t make sense…’ Vick made a disappointed face, unlike Mason who asked–

‘Give me how much?’

Mason suspected his own ears and asked again, and Vick answered back, ‘Huh?’

‘Did you say one million? In a month?’

Mason asked again, and Vick scratched his cheek.

‘No…. it might be a little more than a month.’

Vick said, ‘But hopefully it won’t take that long.’

‘My movie, it still it has a large sum of money invested in it and so, if it takes longer to complete, the project will incur extra few hundred thousand every time.’

‘So coming back to the topic… You will pay me one million for a month?’

Mason’s expression looked like he was hearing a boring joke, and Tony mumbled, ‘Liz…. One million dollars is a lot for us.’ Mason turned around to face him.

‘One million dollars?’

‘….Sorry. The investors said they can’t pay more than that….’

Vick wore an apologizing expression.

‘I’ll even put my own money to match up, so let’s make a contract first. Yes?’

‘….Really gonna give me one million dollars?’

Mason didn’t pay attention to what Vick was saying and glanced and checked the contract that had been in front of him already.

“$1,100,000.00”

No, it was not one million dollars? It was one million and one hundred thousand dollars. In front of him, both Vick and Tony were saying, ‘After this, there will be some commercial offers.’ ‘If that’s a hit, the next movie can earn you 10 million dollars,’ but Mason couldn’t hear anything.

He had rolled and crawled, gotten hurt in the desert, and had sold and bought lives. He went through all kinds of hell, and the income he received was 420 thousand. He considered getting a lot in Zii, but he had to work under extra harsh and dangerous conditions than other people in order to earn it.

But one million and one hundred thousand dollars, in a month– Never mind the unrealistic story about earning 10 million dollars, the big number in front of Mason eyes struck his heart.

He held the pen and signed the contract like he was bewitched by the march of 0s in front of his eyes. He noticed how desperate the other two were and so, bore an expression like he was signing the contract because he got pressured, but actually his hand was slightly trembling. His hands weren’t even shaking when he was signing the body disclaimer contract, but well. Fifty thousand dollars not withstanding, it was now a million dollars, a month. It would be weird if his hands weren’t trembling.

Seriously, this life was very unexpected.

It felt like, he had woken up in a whole new world.

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