Tag Archives: Bosco Wong

There and Back Again; Chapter 4.

4 Jul
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Chapter 4 – Solstice

A curious turn of events
That somehow made you entranced
With one glance I felt no regret
That one look made me forget
The circumstance I left
So maybe, baby, you’ll let me in
The one to show you all you need” – Malbec, Solstice

Additional characters:
Lee Sze Kei – Ms. Doreen
Elaine Yiu Zhi Ling – Nurse Brenda
Leanne Li Yat Nam – Nurse Leanne
Suki Chui Suk Man – Nurse Suki
Vivien Yeo Sau Wai – Nurse Josie
June Chan Kei – Nurse Alice Chan

*

“Flowers for you, Suet Lei!” Brenda (Elaine Yiu) crowed once the delivery came through to the nurses’ station.

The nurses crowded around the expensive-looking bouquet before Suet Lei (Tavia Yeung) herself could see it, oohing and aahing.

“Wow, it’s beautiful,” Leanne (Leanne Li) said, her tone heavy with jealousy. “Who are you dating, Ah Lei?”

Suki (Suki Chui) counted the red roses enviously, wondering who could’ve bought Suet Lei such an extravagant flower arrangement. “Three dozen roses, must be some rich guy.”

“Go on,” Josie (Vivien Yeo) urged. “Read the card! We’re dying to know who it is.”

Suet Lei hesitated. “There must be some kind of mistake,” she protested. “Are you sure it’s for me?”

“Nurse Tam,” Impatient, Leanne grabbed the card off the bouquet and started reading aloud. “Thanks for that other day, I must treat you dinner to make it up to you. I hope you like the flowers.”

“Ooooh,” the bunch of nurses chorused. “How sweet!”

Suet Lei frowned. “For what other day?” she asked out loud, confused.

“Who’s it from?” Brenda asked.

Leanne’s mouth dropped as her eyes widened. “Michael Lam!”

“Michael Lam? You mean, the Michael Lam?”

“Michael, as in MC’s brother?”

“Oh my god, Ah Lei, you’re so lucky!” The nurses exclaimed one by one.

“Wait a minute, who’s Michael Lam?” Suet Lei asked, still confused.

Josie looked as though she wanted to smack some sense into her. “You don’t know who he is? MC’s brother, the one you took the blood sample from that other day?”

Suet Lei thought back, trying to recall his file. “Oh, that guy?”

Suki shook her head. “She gets such expensive flowers from one of the most eligible bachelors around here and all she can say is, ‘oh, that guy’?” she mimicked. “Honestly, are you sure you’re straight?”

Suet Lei glared at her and was about to retort before she was interrupted. “Nurses, you’re not being paid to stand around and look pretty while people die in the wards,” the chief nurse’s voice sounded.

As quickly as they flocked to the flowers, the nurses scurried away, undoubtedly itching with this new gossip to share with other people.

Suet Lei looked after them and groaned inwardly, “Great, just what I need.”

*

“Hi.”

Suet Lei looked up from her files, startled. “Oh.”

Michael (Bosco Wong) stood in front of her, in a pair of jeans, and a designer jacket. “Did you get the flowers?” he smiled.

Suet Lei smiled back tightly. “The flowers, yeah. Umm, the patients would like to thank you for them.”

“Patients?”

She laughed nervously. “Yeah. Uhh, I thought they would like some colour to brighten up their wards, so I distributed your generous bouquet amongst them. Hope you don’t mind. And you really didn’t have to. It’s my duty.”

Michael raised an eyebrow. This was interesting. She didn’t seem affected by the flowers at all. No, this was something he definitely wasn’t used to. Girls blushing, flirting, promising him good times, all after receiving flowers, now that was what he was used to. Girls not liking flowers and giving them away? He was speechless.

“…I hope you’re not mad or anything,” Suet Lei continued talking, fiddling with the front pockets on her skirt uniform. “But thank you. You didn’t have to.”

He watched her, wondering why she didn’t react the way other girls would. It was obvious he was making her nervous. “It doesn’t matter,” he smiled. “It was for you, and for you to do as you please with it.”

Suet Lei smiled, finally meeting his eyes again. “Thank you,” she repeated.

He liked her smile, and matched it with one of his which he hoped was equally as dazzling. “Can I buy you dinner tonight?”

Her eyes widened. “Umm, there’s really no need.”

“Well, since you gave my flowers away, you technically didn’t receive anything from me. Come on, it’s just dinner,” he grinned cheekily. “I promise I won’t bite.”

She laughed. “You don’t have to.”

“I’ve already booked a table at the Oriental Plaza, Nurse Tam.” Michael gave her a puppy-dog look. “Don’t turn a man down twice, will you? It kinda hurts his ego,” he teased her.

Suet Lei felt herself turn a shade of light pink. “Well, you can buy me dinner, but not at the Oriental Plaza.”

“You want to go somewhere else to eat instead?”

“Well, uhh, I’ve actually made plans for dinner tonight, but you can come along.”

He grinned again, the same charming, contagious grin. “It’s a deal.”

*

“You look breath-taking,” Ben (Raymond Lam) whispered in her ear as he escorted her into the grand ballroom. “I like the dress.”

Noelle (Bernice Liu) grinned back, her practiced entry walk graceful and poised. “It’s been sitting in my closet for awhile, waiting for the perfect occasion. Nothing more special than being my handsome best friend’s date,” she joked. The dress was strapless, made out of mustard yellow chiffon that hugged all the right places of her body, with a band of diamante encircling the underbust. The material loosely floated around her knees as she walked, accentuating her slender calves. The colour would’ve been harsh against any normal Asian woman, but it looked perfect on Noelle for she wore it with an assured sense of comfort.

“And I had no idea you were wearing yellow too,” Ben replied proudly, patting his lemon-coloured tie as he spoke.

Noelle stifled a giggle. “Now we look like one of those ridiculously cheesy couples, Dr. Chai.”

*

“I’m buying you dinner at a soup kitchen?” Michael was a good actor in front of the ladies, but he couldn’t help the incredulous tone seeping into his voice.

Suet Lei smiled sheepishly. “Sorry. I probably should have told you first, huh?”

Michael glanced around furtively. “So we eat here?”

“Umm,” she wringed her hands nervously. “I… uhh… I kinda volunteer here every Friday. And uhh, you don’t have to stay if you don’t want to. It’s fine. I understand.”

Michael swallowed hard. “Don’t worry about it,” he lied through his teeth. Remember the trust fund, Mike, he thought to himself. And at least Suet Lei was very easy on the eyes. This shouldn’t be that bad.

She glanced up at him through those big chocolate eyes of hers, and all was forgotten. “Are you sure?”

He grinned, and placed a hand on the small of her back. Perhaps a little presumptuous of him, but she didn’t move away, and so the hand stayed there. “Let’s go. I’ve never done this before, so you’ll have to show me the ropes.”

They walked in, Michael noting how easily Suet Lei went around greeting everyone, and how much the faces on the people there lit up at the sight of her. She led him towards a woman in a black sweater, jeans and an apron. “Ms. Doreen, I brought a friend today to help out. I hope you don’t mind.”

Doreen (Lee Sze Kei) smiled back. Suet Lei was one of her sweetest volunteers; the only male friend she remembered her bringing as a volunteer was Ben, but even then Suet Lei had claimed time and time again that they were like brother and sister, so she’d given up all hope of pushing the matter with the kind girl.

“Michael Lam,” Michael smiled, extending his hand.

“Nice to meet you; it’s about time Suet Lei brought her boyfriend here to meet everyone,” Doreen shook his hand, a mischievous glint in her eyes.

Suet Lei’s eyes widened in shock. “Ms. Doreen!”

Doreen laughed, and patted her hand. “Relax dear, I was just joking. Come on, let’s go, the food’s ready,” she said, leading Suet Lei towards the kitchen and throwing Michael a wink behind her back.

Michael laughed a little under his breath at her antics, and followed suit. Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad after all.

*

He needed a breather, and this was as good as any. Not the most glamorous hide-out of course, the entrance to the ladies was just next to him, with the broom closet right behind him. Thankfully, all the women exiting the washroom strode out quickly in the other direction, not noticing him there. Usually he was effortless at these social things. He was good at his game; he was champion in the operating theatre and the class act when it came to these functions. Everyone wanted a piece of him. Tonight though, it was a little too much for the first time.

“So did you see that Noelle Man?” a loud voice came wafting out from behind the ladies room door.

MC (Moses Chan) stiffened.

Someone snorted. “Who could miss her? In her stupid yellow dress, trying so hard to stand out. Lack of attention, that’s what I call it.”

“She thinks she’s some hotshot, eh? Just because she’s been in a few trashy print ads and played some bit part characters in a few serials.” There was the sound of taps being turned on and off.

“Pfft. Did her characters even have any lines?”

They all laughed shrilly.

“And did you see who she’s with too?”

“I know, Ben Chai of all people! So eligible,” one of them sighed.

“Stupid slut. Always hanging around all these men.”

“Heh. How do you think she even got those roles in the first place?” the first woman suggested.

The other two giggled, as the noise from the hand dryer covered their gossip.

Not long after, three women exited the washroom, without a second glance to his dark corner. MC smirked to himself, noting that they were all unsurprisingly in the conforming colour of black, almost similar cocktail dresses. He shook his head. Jealous, that’s what they were.

To his surprise, the door swung open seconds later.

And he found himself almost eye to eye with a pair of big brown hurt eyes. Her name was on his tongue, but before he could say a word, she quickly turned away, a swish of yellow chiffon, a slight dejection in her stride.

*

“How’s my favourite patient keeping up? Playing Scrabble by herself again?”

Ka Ching (Leila Tong) smiled to herself as she saw the text message. “Scrabble alone will never be the same again after the intense competition you gave me last night, Dr. Chai. How’s the ball?” she typed back quickly, her fingers nimble with text messaging after all those months spent in bed.

Putting the phone down, she smiled to herself. Almost as quickly as she had put it down, it beeped again.

“Scrabble alone would be more fun than this ball, trust me. I should’ve brought you as my date. Mine probably abandoned me for better-looking guys.” Ka Ching felt a flush creeping over her cheeks, giggling a little at the upside down smiley he added at the end of the message.

“You look happy,” a male voice sounded.

Startled, she dropped her phone, having not heard anyone enter the room. Looking up, her eyes widened. She hadn’t seen him in ages.

*

Suet Lei giggled.

Michael writhed uncomfortably and mock-glared at her. “What’s so funny?”

“If only the nurses at the hospital could see you now. Michael Lam, donned from head to toe in plastic; hairnet, gloves, apron,” she laughed.

He couldn’t help but laugh too. “I crinkle every time I move!”

“I really should take a picture of this.”

His eyes widened and he grabbed a ladle full of soup from the pot next to him. “Oh, Nurse Tam, you wouldn’t,” he held up the ladle menacingly.

She laughed and followed suit, grabbing a ladle of rice as her defense. “This is my territory you’re treading on, Mr. Lam,” she said, mimicking his tone.

“Ahem. Could I have my rice now please, Ms. Tam?”

Both Michael and Suet Lei laughed. She turned back and grinned at the homeless man in front of her. “Certainly, Uncle Kwok. I was just giving the newcomer a lesson,” she teased, scooping rice on the man’s empty plate.

Michael followed suit and scooped a spoonful of mixed vegetables onto Uncle Kwok’s plate, neatly next to the rice. More and more people came steaming into the shelter, most of which were dressed shabbily, some with smudged skin. Never had he seen so many homeless people in his life. What amazed him even more was that Suet Lei knew most of them by name. He tried to keep up with the quick moving line, left hand giving out sweet and sour pork, and his right hand with the mixed veggies.

Suet Lei stole a glance at him as he nearly dropped the ladle, smiling to herself. Who knew the rich, spoilt, lusted-after Michael Lam would’ve stuck around for so long, without a single complaint.

He caught her glancing at him, and pulled a funny face at her, making the both of them crack up at the same time.

“Excuse me,” a little girl in pigtails and a torn dress tiptoed over the counter to glare at them. “Will you stop laughing? You’re getting saliva all over the sweet and sour pork,” she said indignantly, one hand on her hips.

Both of them laughed even harder, and Michael gave her a double helping of the pork to make her smile.

*

MC walked out of the large ceiling to floor glass doors of the ballroom and onto the beautiful grounds of the hotel garden. There was a smattering of people outside, quietly chatting. Only one woman sat alone at the gazebo. He walked towards her, hands coolly in his pockets.

She looked up at the sound of footsteps, saw him, and turned her gaze back to her glass flute of champagne. “Don’t.”

“Don’t what?”

“Don’t pretend you didn’t hear all that earlier on. Don’t pretend to be concerned. Don’t sit down. And sure as hell, don’t. Bloody. Smirk.”

He sat down opposite her. And smirked. He couldn’t help it. “Defensive, much?”

“You don’t have to pretend to be nice to me, you know,” Noelle downed the last of her champagne and set it down on the gazebo table. “You don’t like me. And the feeling’s mutual, believe me.”

“You sound hurt.”

She looked away, ignoring him.

“Look, if it matters, I know the three women.”

Noelle turned back to glare at him. “I really don’t need to know details of your various escapades with women, thank you very much.”

MC chuckled under his breath. “I don’t kiss and tell.” When he got no reply from her, he continued on. “One of them is Angel Sung, Sung Wah’s, as in Sung & Sung Watches Corp, eldest daughter. Spoilt brat, thinks very highly of herself, brain the size of a medium-sized shrimp. Another was a Miss Hong Kong semi-finalist in 2000, I can’t remember what she named herself, but it’s after a fruit. Enough said. And I don’t know who the third one was, but she forgot to shave her legs tonight. Big no-no, especially in her short dress.”

Noelle stared at him, a smile bubbling on her lips. “I don’t know how you just said all that with a straight face,” she said incredulously.

He shrugged. “I’ve a good memory.”

She finally allowed herself to laugh. “I only hope your memory is as good when it’s comes to medicinal procedures.”

He raised an eyebrow. “I’m not the top neurosurgeon in the hospital for nothing you know. Some would even say I’m the best in the country.”

“I forgot you were a walking advertisement for yourself,” she rolled her eyes. “Although with the constant coverage from the gossip magazines, I don’t see why you have to bother.”

He leaned in closer to her. “You looked me up in the gossip magazines. Why, I’m flattered, Noelle,” he said, his voice deep.

It was her turn to smirk. She leaned in closer too, her eyes not backing down. “That’s because I specifically use your articles to line the floor of my car whenever I need to transport garbage to the landfill nearby.”

He laughed.

“So, this is where you’ve gone, MC!” A ridiculously grating voice came from behind Noelle. Both Noelle and MC turned around. “Who’s this you’re with, MC?” she asked, her eyes sweeping over Noelle.

Noelle smirked and returned the once-over, her gaze coolly lingering over the woman’s cheap-looking velvet dress which was too low and too short for the occasion and her trashy looking platform heels.

MC cleared his throat. “Well, this is Ms. Man, Noelle. This,” he gestured towards the woman, “is Nurse Chan, or Alice.”

“I’m the head of the nurses’ department,” Alice (June Chan) added.

Noelle smiled. “That’s good to know,” she said simply.

“What are you doing out here, MC?” Alice switched her attention to MC. “You said you’ll save a dance for me!”

Noelle cringed. This was worse than Ah Lok, the guy she had to wrangle MC to save her from in the parking lot. This woman’s voice was all sorts of high-pitch with a variety of screechy undertones.

Plastering a gracious smile across her face, she leaned across and laid her hand on MC’s arm softly, improvising. “Hey there, if you want to dance with my date, you’re gonna have to wait until I’ve had my fair share of dances with him first, okay?”

MC stared back at her, and quickly played around, the confusion for a split second not obvious. He smiled gallantly, and shrugged at Alice, while holding his hand out for Noelle to hold. “May I?” he glanced at her.

Smiling sweetly at him, playing the part, she placed her hands in his, “My pleasure,” she said, and he led her out to the dance floor.

*

And that’s all for this update! Not a lot of Raymond or Leila this chapter, because I really wanted to devote something to the Bosco-Tavia pairing. And of course, I always end up writing tons of Moses/Bernice. I didn’t mean to, I swear! I’ll make it up to all you Ray/Leila fans next chapter, promise! Let me know what you think. 🙂

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What’s Up; #2.

2 Mar

First of all, let me apologize for the long leave of absence. Last week was the first week of uni, and there was all the bustle with arranging tutorial times, buying books, finding lecture theatres and learning my way around the newly-constructed campus. Phew. That said, it’s been nice to come home after a long day at uni and after a long hour in a traffic jam and back to Astro on Demand. Boy, am I glad the parents have just fully subscribed to it because I am absolutely loving The Seventh Day.

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I’ve never thought Kevin Cheng to be a spectacular actor (or rather, he’s probably just never had a good enough role, for me personally, to justify the buzz about him), but he entertains here as Yau Chi Wing. Chi Wing is very rough around the edges, and yet soft at heart; sometimes he’s as oblivious as sandpaper, but at other times he pretends not to care. So far, it’s not been rocket science to portray, and Kevin does it adequately. And on a totally superficial note, can I just say how incredibly good-looking he is in The Seventh Day? All the females in my family swoon. Heh. Niki Chow is adorable as always. Again, not the best actress amongst her age group (although, the fact that she isn’t completely an actress to begin with should hold for something) but does a good enough job playing the very likeable, pleasant and sweet Ka Yan. But put together, these two are absolutely magic like before. They bring out the best of each other on screen. Ka Yan‘s angelic demeanor evens out Ah Wing‘s ruggedness, and the result is beautiful. Kevin and Niki really are a force to be reckoned with. And before I forget, I want to fly to Hong Kong and steal little Jack. ASAP. That dog is the cutest AND smartest little thing I’ve ever seen. Scene-stealer in every scene he’s in!

While Kevin and Niki shone in the first five episodes or so, I have to say that in the other five, Bosco and Natalie are really making the series good for me. Like every other viewer, I had my reserves about them. I love Bosco Wong, and I love Bosco even more in comedic roles like Don here. His body language and facial expressions are hilariously classic in here. As a fan of Natalie Tong, I was worried about how she would fare in such a big role, and opposite Bosco, nonetheless, whom the public has already accepted with Myolie at large, what more in a comedic viewpoint. Thankfully, Natalie proves her mettle as a steadily improving actress thus far, and I’m glad she got this opportunity to be the second lead. Hopefully this will not be a one-off chance like on-screen best friend Elaine Yiu who once got a big role in Revolving Doors of Vengeance and Safe Guards and has been relegated to supporting roles ever since. She more than holds her own against the very experienced Bosco and they generate a great chemistry that just makes you want to root for them.

The two seperate camps of 3J and DDMK provide for some great funny scenes, and while most of the forums are buzzing about Charmaine Li, Elaine Yiu is the one catching my attention. I despised her in RDOV and thought she was pretty much an atrocious actress and have since avoided any series she’s been in. However, she’s very quickly growing on me, thanks to The Seventh Day (and bits and pieces of The Gentle Crackdown II). After flying to Hong Kong and stealing Jack, my second task will be personally shaving off Sam Chan‘s hideous goatee. And really, yay for Stephanie Che. She never fails to brighten up the series.

And speaking of The Gentle Crackdown II

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I loved the first one. Moses and Niki were great in it. I wasn’t looking forward to the sequel at all, besides Steven and Wayne, but after catching a few episodes, it was funnier than I thought it would be. Steven was fantastic as usual, Wayne was nothing short of phenomenal. Yumiko Cheng, on the other hand… Hmm. I have nothing against the HK singers starring in TVB series, but please, at least let them start up from supporting roles? Niki was second female lead in Hard Fate before Under the Canopy of Love; Ella Koon was second female lead in RDOV before Survivor’s Law II, and Fiona Sit was second female lead in The Academy. Maybe someone should’ve given Yumiko a supporting role to start out with too. I tried not to watch scenes with her in it, but that was difficult, given she had maximised screen-time. That, and her cringe-worthy horrible Rihanna-esque bob hairstyle.

The Steven-Wayne partnership is one that is golden and the producers seem to know it. These two actors play off each other brilliantly, be it in comedic or serious scenes. Ha Yu and Law Koon Lan were expectedly good in their parental roles, while Lei Seng Cheung, Johnson Lee (who’s got a great dead-pan expression) and the other three were so funny as the sidekicks. I really like Johnson Lee. Seems like he’s been given more chances of late, so that’s great. Like I said above, Elaine is really growing on me – she did a great job as the soft-spoken and gentle escort. All the TVB spoofs and gags along the way were hilarious as well. I really would like to finish The Gentle Crackdown II one day for the sake of Steven and Wayne and the hilarity that comes with it. Hopefully I warm up to Yumiko soon; that would make it a whole lot easier.

That aside, D.I.E. to be shown soon? I’m actually quite looking forward to it. The trailers and the themevideo portray it to be very interesting. I’m looking forward to seeing Roger in a role like this (which reminds me of his role in To Get Unstuck In Time, actually) and you know, in a normal hairstyle instead of a bowl haircut. Not a fan of Sonija‘s and am indifferent to Kenneth, but their roles look different too from the trailers. Looks good as a whole, to be honest. And of course, there’s Derek Kwok!

I was browsing through the AF forum and I found this great fanfic, which in my opinion, is quite scarce in the TVB fandom. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m in no way praising my amateur-ly written fanfiction, but it’s just that I really rarely stumble across quality-written stories involving TVB) It’s called Storm Chasers by jas73 and it’s well-written with a good sense of continuity and author style, and is well researched to boot. Revolves around Raymond and Tavia, with a jealous Ron, scheming Charmaine, mourning Jessica, mysterious Gallen and many other well-fleshed out characters. Really, do give it a try. Mystery, suspence, action; you won’t be disappointed.

Besides winglin.net and the AF forum, is there even any place to go to for TVB-related fanfiction? I don’t know about you, but I find it difficult to navigate and it’s really not the user-friendliest place in the world. I just wish there was something more like fanfiction.net, where it’s a proper fanfiction archive where you can search for fics by author, or by the top-rated fics, or genre. That would make avid fic-readers’ lives much easier.

And as for the HK entertainment news of late, I’m getting really sick and tired of hearing about Edison Chen everywhere I go. Come on, it’s been what, nearly a month? Move on, already. So, he enjoys intercourse like every other hot-blooded male does. Indulges in photographic fetishes. Granted, it’s stupidity on his part (and on the females’ part, let’s not forget) because they are seen as public figures, but he doesn’t need to be constantly painted as the villain, which is another thing that annoys me. It takes two to tango, as the saying goes. I am as feminist as they come. And it surprises me how many females fight for gender equality on so many platforms on a daily basis, and yet when it comes to some of this nature, immediately stone the male. Gender equality and all that, heh. For me, the girls are as much at “fault” as he was. Just my $0.02. Case closed, for me, at least.

And just for the record, I am neither a fan of Edison Chen (unless watching an episode of his MTV show or remarking that he used to be “cute” to my sister constitutes me as one) nor Gillian Chung (I am most definitely not a fan of Twins either – please don’t get me started on the state of their live performances and squeaky clean images).

And, uh, well that’s all for today. I’m all typed out.

The Year of the Rat Ahead

11 Feb

So, it’s the Lunar New Year again, this time the year of the rat. And so, a typical question on everybody’s mine is, how will my year be in the year of the rat? chinese.astrology.com has the rundown for the year ahead. For a good bit of fun in the CNY manner, let’s see what happens when we apply those forecasts to our favourite TVB stars.

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The Rat in the year of the Rat
Bobby Au-Yeung (1960), Matthew Ko (1984), Linda Chung (1984), Vivien Yeo (1984)

Out of the year ahead, apparently eight months are favourable for the Rat. The year may get off to a slow start for them, but the latter part of the year will hold bigger and better opportunities – patience will be a virtue. Bobby has a new drama which is currently filming which also stars Sheren Tang that could very well lead to many advertising opportunities towards the end of the year. Matthew and Linda also have Man in Charge, and A Journey Called Life and The Gem of Life respectively, ready for release very soon. For the Rat, this year is also the best time for career advancement; both Matthew and Vivien have been given very big opportunities of late – could this be their time to shine? When it comes to love, there is a high possibility that a recent acquaintance or a newly formed friendship could develop into a serious love affair. Maybe those Matthew/Kate Tsui rumours might come true soon.

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The Ox in the year of the Rat
Damian Lau (1949), Ada Choi (1973) 

The year of the rat is a win-lose situation for the Ox. According to the experts, the ox will face half a year of difficulty, with the ending half favourable. This will not the time to take risks, especially unnecessary or avoidable risks. Hard work is more the Ox’s style anyway; this is very true for both Damian and Ada whose pure hard work and talent within the entertainment circle over the years is widely known. As for the Ox’s relationships, one bright spot may lay in their family relationships, as they might offer you a measure of unconditional love. This bodes well for the newlywed Ada and her loving husband, Max.

Tiger
The Tiger in the year of the Rat
Sonija Kwok (1974), Joyce Tang (1974), Kenneth Ma (1974), Patrick Tang (1974)

42% of the year will apparently be favourable for the tiger in the year of the rat. The Tiger will have to carefully pick their battles, as they probably will not be blessed with many good opportunities. This might not be true for Kenneth as he has a truckload of series due for airing this year. Patrick is also rather favoured by the bosses, and he has the famous Foodie 2 Shoes under his belt. This leaves us with the ladies. Sonija already had a horrible year last year, what with the Michael Tao and third party rumours, so let’s hope this forecast doesn’t come true with a repeat of last year occurring. The Tiger will also gain a lot in friendships and have a fulfilling social life but the only bump in the road may come in their romantic relationships, as their aggressive approach may not find favor in this conservative Earth element year. Hopefully this doesn’t affect Joyce and what seems like a burgeoning relationship with Derek Kwok.

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The Rabbit in the year of the Rat
Michael Tao (1963), Alex Fong (1963), Charmaine Sheh (1975), Yoyo Mung (1975)

After a good year last year, the Rabbit is expected to have a slightly more challenging year of the Rat, especially in the middle months of 2008. Career-wise, it could be frustrating as there might be delays and mix-ups in their way. For Charmaine and Yoyo who have upcoming series to film, might that mean delays in filming/production? Relationships with colleagues could also pose a problem, especially if there is involvement in office politics and gossip. Again, both the rumour prone females better take note. That aside, their domestic scene could make up for the trying workfront. Time is best spent with loved ones relaxing like what Alex Fong will likely do with his wife. Love is likely to be in the air for singles like Michael and Charmaine, but things should be taken slowly to avoid disappointment. Rabbits must also beware of conmen this year; however, a bright spot is that long term investments will bring a good return. Maybe it’s time for Yoyo and Ekin Cheng to get a place of their own. 😉

Dragon
The Dragon in the year of the Rat
Roger Kwok (1964), Derek Kwok (1964), Margaret Chung (1976), Annie Man (1976)

With 11 favourable months and 1 neutral month, the Dragon could be the best off amongst all the other zodiacs. Dragons, while having to avoid risk, will have a good chance of realising a big dream this year. Maybe Margaret will be able to expand her yoga venture this year. The year of the Rat also seems to smile on the career of the Dragon. With creativity, heart and spirit, points could be won with those in authority and advancements in career are highly likely. The star of Roger can only go higher with D.I.E. and thriller Last One Standing, while Derek who did great last year, could stand to gain even more recognition this year. Margaret and Annie should also consider filming for TVB again. I’m sure a lot of viewers would agree with that. Equally lucky in relationships, the Dragon stands to find romance, or even better, his or her soulmate this year as it is a very auspicious year for love – love might soon be in the air for singles like the very eligible Derek (Joyce Tang anyone?), Margaret and Annie. The earth element of 2008 also favors family and heart-felt gestures, perfect for Roger and his wife Cindy Au, who will be happy parents very soon!

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The Snake in the year of the Rat
Bowie Lam (1965), Jack Wu (1977), Maggie Siu (1965)

With one less favourable month as compared to the Dragon, the year of the Rat will be a better one for the Snake than last year. Almost every month will present a new opportunity to the snake, although they might want to take a break straight after the Lunar New Year. With the mega-production of The Gem of Life looming ahead for both Bowie and Maggie, the year is bound to be bountiful, and after filming it for many long months last year, a break after the new year is in store for the two. Also, the fast paced energy given off by the Rat creates a dynamic career environment which could inspire the Snake with new ideas resulting in many opportunities which requires quick and decisive actions. If the Snake is bored with their present work situation, this is a good time to seek greener pastures. Could this be a hint to Jack to leave the hosting behind and to continue to carve a name for himself in the acting industry? Single Snakes have a wonderful chance to find love and romance, or maybe just one great fling. All three of them should take note!

Horse
The Horse in the year of the Rat
Sammul Chan (1978), Stephen Huynh (1978), Bernice Liu (1979), Shirley Yeung (1978)

With only three neutral months and the remaining months being unfavourable, it looks to be a tough year ahead for the Horse. A quick start to the year will be important as the latter months of the year could be very challenging indeed. Might that mean awards at the end of the year will once again elude Sammul and Bernice? Projects will become a bit more difficult and delays could be the norm. Hopefully this does not affect Bernice who’s currently filming The Legendary Ren Jie and Sammul, who will soon begin filming The Academy III, or cause Shirley‘s Silver Mansion Golden Dust to be warehoused. While they may experience some bumps in the road, there will be have many opportunities to learn and it might be beneficial to further their work-related knowledge; Bernice and Stephen should continue working hard on improving their pronounciation. When it comes to romance, letting their guard down, especially with those who love them, is one way to happiness. Might Bernice be letting her guard down with a certain Best Actor? The Horse will be best served by exercising patience and understanding the needs of his or her partner. Shirley and long-time boyfriend Gregory Lee should take note, just in case.

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The Sheep in the year of the Rat
Raymond Lam (1979), Ron Ng (1979), Myolie Wu (1979), Tavia Yeung (1979)

With only 5 favourable months, this year will not be as good as the pig year last year for these sheep. However, it is important to note that there are still five favourable months will plenty of opportunities if the Sheep does not get down and let negative emotions get the best of them. All four stars have big projects at hand with many opportunies; Raymond has The Four and Heart of Greed II, Ron with The Four and possibly Thirteen Treasures, Myolie with When A Dog Loves A Cat and apparently Burning Flame III after that, and Tavia with Salt Traders and Heart of Greed II. They will do best this year if they let their head, and not their heart dictate their actions. Ron made a smart choice by branching out to the mainland market last year, and his career might continue rising with the awaited The Four and the filming of the The Academy III. Career-wise, the Sheep might face large pressure from management to work more. Advancement and progress will come if there is strong diligence, of which there is definitely no shortage of when it comes to these four. The sheep must remain rational about their workload and pressure and their inclination to say no if the load is too much to handle. The quartet of Raymond, Ron, Myolie and Tavia are the cream of the crop of the younger generation and are possibly the most overworked ones. This year they might have to learn to face even larger pressure and juggle their work and home life well. For the single Sheep like Raymond, Ron and Tavia, this year could lead to the blossoming of true love. However, existing relationships could be problematic. At the same time, they need to be wary of rumors and gossip, as they will lead to unnecessary arguments. Myolie and rumoured guy Bosco Wong sound familiar?

Monkey
The Monkey in the year of the Rat
Joe Ma (1968), Bosco Wong (1980), Elaine Yiu (1980), Carrie Lam (1980)

Along with the Dragon, the Monkey will have the best year this year out of the twelve zodiacs. Opportunities will be aplenty for the typical, mentally quick and multi-talented Monkey. However, overconfidence could hinder some of those opportunities. The monkey is advised to go with their heart and follow their instincts with their projects at hand. Rewards will be seen when working closely with coworkers who exhibit similar ideas. Bosco, while working closely with his great coworker Myolie Wu reaped great rewards with their outstanding chemistry last year with War of In-Laws II; might that continue in the following year as well? Ideas and hard work will most likely be rewarded this year. Joe, who has signed a contract with TVB late last year could see himself rewarded as early as the end of this year at the anniversary awards. A resurgent Elaine , and well as newbie Carrie could also see themselves with more chances. The monkey’s social life should be very active this year. Married ones like Joe will find themselves more than ever, wanting to spend a lot of time with their spouse and might even lead to an addition in the family! The single Monkey should expect to find an abundance of opportunities in love and this might not be the year to settle down. Oh no, does that mean there’s no hope for Bosco and Myolie after all?

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The Rooster in the year of the Rat
Paul Chun (1945), Kevin Cheng (1969), Leila Tong (1981), Selena Li (1981)

After the Horse, the Rooster is the sign most likely to have a challenging year with a total of 9 unfavourable months. There will, nevertheless, be a few opportunities. With a big role in The Four, Selena‘s opportunities will probably come in abundance after its release. A cooperative attitude, and winning allies will be the key to success. With Leila‘s amiable work ethics and her budding success with her music and the mainland market, she should do well. Progress may be a little slow on the career front this year for the rooster but time must be taken to understand the roots of the problems. Support of co-workers and superiors are vital. Such a well-respected and well-liked veteran like Paul probably need not worry. One of TVB’s favourite sons, Kevin will also probably be in a good spot with the support for the upcoming The Seventh Day and the anticipated Last One Standing. The single Rooster like the beautiful Leila , need not rush into anything new this year, as things may not always be quite what they seem. The Rooster in a relationship needs to be wary and avoid missteps, as small problems have the potential to erupt into larger, out-of-hand ones this year. Might rumoured couples Kevin and Niki Chow, along with Selena and Patrick Tang have anything to worry about? Added stressed caused from relationship problems could be detrimental to their health. Let’s hope all four stay healthy and happy in ’08!

Dog
The Dog in the year of the Rat
Michael Miu (1958), Jessica Hsuan (1970), Fala Chen (1982) 

More than half the year is deemed to be positive for the Dog in 2008. For them, it will be more challenging than last year, but still has the potential to be very favourable. With the release of Suspicious Love for Michael and the upcoming The Academy III and Heart of Greed II for him and Fala respectively; that is most definitely valuable potential. Jessica has also apparently been slated to film Just Love II soon. Willingness to leave their comfort zone will lead to significant progress towards the dog’s goals and enable them to achieve one or more notable successes. Jessica left her comfort zone last year with her soft-spoken, timid role in Drive of Life which was widely acclaimed. Fala could very well continue that streak by taking on the role of a mute this time round in HOG II. Time spent promoting themselves and their skills and standing out to the people on the company ladder will be well-spent. Fala‘s popularity rose last year with her dancing skills; will she continue on this year? Domestically, comfort will be found in family relationships this year, be it with parents, children or loved ones. The single ones like the very eligible Jessica, will find good fun and mental stimulation this year; with plenty of chances to meet new friends and explore new love interests. The Year of the Earth Rat will likely be favorable towards their new savings plans and investment decisions; possibly a good year for Michael‘s business up ahead!
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The Boar in the year of the Rat
Moses Chan (1971), Steven Ma (1971), Gigi Lai (1971), Koni Lui (1983)

Said to be the most generous and honorable zodiac sign, these four are in for a good year this year. The environment is likely to be more unsettling, albeit simultaneously providing more opportunities for success. The formidable Moses won big at last year’s awards; imagine what more he could do this year. The boar needs to mentally adjust his or herself and focus squarely on the present this year. Gigi had a turbulent year last year with her brother’s incident, and there’s nothing better to do than to focus and live to the fullest in both family and career. Increased success is in store for the boar; they just need to stay focused on the prize. Great advice for a budding newbie like Koni. Their work environment is more comfortable this year and people around them will be appreciative of their experience and talent. Might Steven be able to win Best Actor this year with this added appreciation? The single Pig will find plenty of opportunities this year and love is in the air, possibly along with a new career connection or two. Moses, who has all along endorsed the idea of appearing as a celebrity advertising couple with Bernice Liu for work and sponsor-related purposes, has been the brunt of good-natured marriage ribbing from colleagues recently. Might there be more than just a career connection there? The pace of the year also poses some risk to your health and well-being and any risky physical activity should be avoided. Let’s all pray for no more horse mishaps for the poor Steven. We want to see both his eyes if/when he wins an award this year. 

*

Just a good bit of fun forecasting the year ahead traditional Chinese-style with the twelve zodiacs and the TVB artistes. I don’t personally believe in astrology, but I like to read it just for fun… who knows, right? Lol.

And I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a very happy belated Valentine’s day! xoxo.

There and Back Again; Chapter 3

3 Feb

So, finally, the lazy fanfic writer in me completes a chapter of There and Back Again. You guys who read this fanfic are really too good to me. The amount of support I have for this piece of fanfiction is really overwhelming, and I just want to apologise for not repaying that support with quick steady updates! I’m not that good with words, so it kinda takes me longer than what your average writer would need. Anyway, since it’s been such a long time since I’ve updated, you can use the links below to refresh your memory, if necessary. Other than that, I hope you enjoy!

Prologue
Chapter 1 – The Calm Before the Storm
Chapter 2 – You and I Collide

 

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Chapter 3 – Out of My Element

“You make me feel out of my element
Like I’m walkin’ on broken glass
Like my worlds spinnin’ in slow motion
And you’re movin’ too fast.” – Aly and AJ, Chemicals React.

Additional characters:
Mary Hon Ma Lei – Lan Yee (Auntie Lan)
Elaine Yiu Zhi Ling – Nurse Brenda Chen

Ben (Raymond Lam) walked into her room, his stethoscope bouncing around his neck as he walked over to Ka Ching’s bed. “Morning,” he grinned, grabbing her charts off the foot of her bed. “How’re you feeling today?”

“Better,” she smiled. ‘Now that you’re here,’ she added in her mind, but only she didn’t say it. It sounded way too flirty.

“Cool.”

“You must be the only doctor I’ve seen in this hospital who says ‘cool’,” she teased him.

Ben laughed, as he checked her stats. “Well, but aren’t I? Cool?”

“You don’t have as many cool points as I do, Dr. Chai.”

“Well, would this give me more cool points?” He produced a shiny fresh red apple from the pocket of his white coat.

Ka Ching (Leila Tong) eyed the apple. “An apple a day keeps the doctor away. Are you trying to wriggle out of your doctor duties and not come check on me tomorrow?”

“No,” he smirked. “I’m just trying to ease some of your pain of missing Dr. Chan. You said he’d bring you an apple and you’d knit him a scarf, didn’t you?”

“…oh”, Ka Ching managed to get out, taken aback by Ben’s words. She felt a blush creep over her cheeks as he scribbled something on her charts.

He laughed under his breath as he hung the charts back where it belonged. “I’ll be waiting for that scarf then.” And with that, he left the room, while Ka Ching felt herself smiling at the red apple all day long.

*

Noelle (Bernice Liu) checked her watch impatiently, tapping her heel against the cool marble floor as she waited for the lift to come. “Come on,” she muttered under her breath.

It wasn’t exactly her fault that she was late. She needed, okay, maybe wanted, a new pair of heels, and the red peep-toe kitten heels she saw in Gemini in the mall were screaming out her name. But that wasn’t the point.

The point was Ben and Ah Lei would undoubtedly be annoyed. “It’s not like it’s my fault that they both chose such busy professions,” she grumbled again as the elevator doors dinged and opened. “And make me come all the way here just so we can have lunc-” Stepping in in mid-sentence, she stopped short in her tracks. Her eyes narrowed, but the doors had already closed behind her.

“You, again.” A voice sounded.

Noelle turned her back on him, slammed an index finger against the ‘3’ button and crossed her arms against her chest in a huff. “Yeah, so?” she retorted.

He snorted, and Noelle swore she could feel him smirk even with her back to him. “Don’t you have a day job?”

“In fact, I do,” she replied haughtily. “I’m a free-lance model and actress.”

He snorted again, this time louder than the first, and in true fashion, smirked. “I see.”

Annoyed, she whirled to face him. “And what’s wrong with that, huh?”

MC (Moses Chan) shrugged. “I can see why you’ve got so much free time on your hands then. Coming here all the time, shopping,” he said, nodding towards her paper bag which contained her new shoes. “It’s no wonder you’re not getting any jobs, really, with an attitude and face like that.”

Noelle’s mouth dropped in shock, her eyes flashing indignantly. “You- you-”

“Have a pleasant day, Ms. Man,” he said smoothly, and strode out of the elevator, leaving her furious and more agitated than she’d ever been.

*

“I swear, if you guys keep on making me come here to meet you for lunch, we’re not going to be friends for much longer,” Noelle plopped down her shopping bags on a chair and collapsed into the chair next to it. “I hate him. I swear I do.”

Ben checked his watched and clucked his tongue comically. “Let’s see, you’re late, and we’re the ones who aren’t your friends anymore? Real sweet, Man Po Yee,” he joked as his best friend shot him a glare that could kill.

Suet Lei (Tavia Yeung) giggled. A day was not a day if it didn’t witness Noelle’s melodrama and Ben’s offbeat humour. “Okay, spill, who’s got you in such a twist now?” she asked as she pushed the plate of chips to Noelle, despite Ben’s protests.

Shooting her a grateful look, Noelle started. “That- that MC Lam. Who thinks he owns the earth. And acts like he’s the hottest guy on earth. And smartest. And strides around like a pompous jerk. And acts like he owns the freaking hospital!”

Ben chuckled. “I see you’ve met our famous doctor again.”

“Famous?” Noelle snorted. “Ridiculously annoying is more like it.”

“You know,” Suet Lei took a sip of her drink and nodded towards the table where MC was having lunch, complete with a flock of nurses around him. “I don’t speak for myself, but I know for a fact that plenty of nurses in this hospital would kill, and I repeat, kill, to be annoyed by him.”

“Probably shamelessly soaking up all the attention.”

Ben sniggered. “The nurses do have a thing for him, don’t they?” he noted as Suet Lei rolled her eyes and nodded. “I was walking past the nurses’ station this morning and they were all talking about who he’s going to bring to the charity ball, while Suet Lei sat there and did the Sudoku puzzle in the papers.”

“What?” Suet Lei protested. “He’s not my cup of tea. And besides, all they do is talk about him all day. I’ve heard so much about him that it’s boring, actually.”

“That’s my girl. Besides, who would actually want to date him? He might as well bring a mirror to that ball. Save him the fifty trips he’d need to make to the bathroom to keep his self-adoration quota up.”

“God, you’re good, Noelle. Sure, you don’t want to be a comedian instead of a model?” Ben laughed again. “Hey, besides, you gotta give the guy some credit. I could use a date to the charity ball too, and nobody’s knocking on my door like they are on his.”

“Why don’t you take Suet Lei?” Noelle asked, curious. “Or does our best friend have a date already?” she teased.

Suet Lei rolled her eyes. “I’m just a lowly nurse who’s unfortunately got a shift that night. Thank God.”

“Oh, too bad. Want me to go with you, Ben?”

Ben’s eyebrows raised. “Hey, that’s a good idea. Even though you’re probably ditch me for some other hot-shot doctor once we get there.”

“Hey!” Noelle reached across the table and swatted him on the arm. “That’s only like, half-true.”

Suet Lei giggled. “Why do I have a feeling there’s going to be some good stories the next day about this charity ball?”

“Yeah, Noelle’s probably going to have a war with MC again,” Ben laughed.

Noelle glared at the both of them, throwing a chip each their way, while the both of them laughed even harder.

*

“Lan Yee, come on, sit down with me and eat.” Michael patted the chair next to him fondly.

Lan Yee (Mary Hon) looked back at him, shaking her head. “You know I’ve never gotten used to eating in the main dining hall.”

Michael smiled at her. If there was anyone in the world he truly respected and loved, it was Lan Yee. “You’ve been with us for thirty years now. There’s nothing to be shy about! Come on, I haven’t had a beautiful dinner date in ages,” he winked.

“Silly boy,” she laughed, albeit sitting down slowly. “Girls are lining up from here to Macau for a chance at a dinner date with you.”

“But none who can cook as well as you,” Michael joked.

Lan Yee’s tone grew serious. “You and your brother are exactly the same. Are either of you ever going to settle down?”

Michael smiled tightly. “Settling down’s not for me.”

She sighed. “Is it something I put into the food that results in the both of you being so playful when it comes to the love department?” Lan Yee asks, peering in to the food.

Putting down his chopsticks, Michael reached out to put an arm around her shoulders. “Now, MC and I don’t always agree, but I know he won’t object when I say that we’re not being serious because we judge every woman we date against a yard stick. And that yard stick’s you!” he laughed, when Lan Yee glared at him. “You set pretty high standards you know. Can’t blame us.”

“You and your sweet mouth,” she admonished. “If you put half as much effort into finding a job as you do into females, you’ll be a millionaire by now.”

“Well, if MC would let me have that damned trust fund, I would be,” Michael’s tone darkened.

Lan Yee looked at him firmly. “You know it’s not his fault. Your parents left your trust fund in both mine and MC’s hands to decide when you deserve it.”

“Which is ridiculous,” he rolled his eyes. “People get their trust funds when they’re eighteen or twenty-one. Look at me, I’m twenty-five!”

“Then start acting your age,” Lan Yee said, in a gentle tone.

If that had came out from anyone else’s mouth, Michael would have ignored it, exchanged a few harsh words, even. God knows MC gave him enough hell when it came to being serious. “It’s not like I don’t want to, Lan Yee. You tell me to grow up and find a job. So, I think about it. Seriously,” he emphasized. “I want to start a business. But if I don’t have my trust fund, where am I going to get my start-up capital? It just doesn’t make sense.”

“Business?” she asked warily. “Are you sure?”

“Of course,” Michael cajoled. “It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do since I was eighteen,” he said, twisting the truth a little. “Help me out here, Lan Yee. Please?” he gave her his best puppy-dog look.

Lan Yee pursed her lips. “I’ll…I’ll talk to MC about it.”

A big grin spread across Michael’s face. “You’re the best! MC listens to yo-”

“But I have my conditions!” she interjected.

He grinned, this was a good start. “Name it.”

“You could start bringing home a nice girl for once for me,” Lan Yee glared at him. “Honestly, I don’t know where you find all your girls. Makeup an inch thick, skirts five inches shorter than they should be.”

“Is that it?” Michael laughed.

Lan Yee raised an eyebrow. “Why, do you have a candidate already?”

He smiled. “Well, we’ll see.”

“Tell me!”

Nice, decent girl. She fit the description. “I think you won’t be disappointed,” he grinned, putting a piece of chicken into Lan Yee’s bowl. “Enough boring talk, let’s eat.”

*

Michael walked back into his room, a smile playing on his lips without even knowing it. Striding towards his desk, he ruffled through his top desk drawer, until he came up with a stack of name cards. Shuffling through them, he finally found what he was looking for.

Blooming’s Florist Pty Ltd. “Bingo.”

Every woman loved flowers, didn’t they? She would be no exception.

*

Ben walked down the corridors of the hospital, mentally ticking off things off his to-do list in his head. It had been a tiring day, lots of patients to check on, a couple of surgeries, paperwork. And to top it off, he hadn’t been here for long. Half his residency had been done in the States where he had graduated. Here, he had to start all over again, and put in some extra work – more than what was expected from the others. It wasn’t that he minded working in Hong Kong. This was where home was, where his life had used to be. His best friends were here. He just never thought, never expected that he’d be back.

“Night, Dr. Chai!”

Ben smiled at the nurse. “Have a good night, Brenda,” he smiled politely in return to the flirtatious glance.

“Aren’t you leaving yet?”

“Umm,” he looked at his watch, feigning indifference. 1 a.m. “I think I’ll just hang around and wait for Suet Lei. She’ll almost be done soon,” he said, lying through his teeth. He knew very well that Suet Lei had left nearly five hours ago, having to work the graveyard shift tomorrow during the hospital charity dinner.

The nurse’s face fell. “All right then. Er,” she said, stalling for time. “Night again, Dr. Chai.”

Normally, he would’ve answered with a ‘call me Ben’, but he decided against it tonight. “Good night.” Turning around, he walked away, glancing at his watch again, having to allow her ten minutes to leave the hospital grounds before he could make his safe exit. He didn’t know what it was that they taught as this particular nurses’ station, but they sure were like hyenas. The others were fine; it was just this particular one that had all the clingy nurses. “Must’ve failed with MC this afternoon,” he chuckled to himself, walking back down the hall to his office.

A light still on in one of the private rooms caught his eye. Room 839. Ka Ching, he recalled from memory instantly. Smiling, he knocked on the door softly. He heard a soft shuffling to the door, which then promptly opened the size of a crack.

“Hey, it’s me.”

The door opened wider to show Ka Ching’s beautiful smile. “Hey. What are you doing here?”

“Why are you still awake?” Ben asked at the same time.

“I couldn’t sleep, so I thought I’d play some Scrabble,” she shrugged, biting her lip as she told him. “Don’t laugh.”

“I love Scrabble. I wouldn’t laugh!” Ben instantly brightened up, grinning. “Up for a competition?”

Ka Ching raised an eyebrow, giggling at his reaction. “Are you sure? Don’t you have something else to do?”

“Relax, I’m off duty.”

“Bu- but, aren’t you tired or something?”

“Dude, it’s Scrabble,” Ben remarked, almost like a child. “Are you scared or something?” he teased.

Her mouth fell open in surprise. “No freaking way!”

She opened her door to let him in, shuffling back to her bed in her bunny slippers, while Ben walked in behind her, closing the door.

“Game on!” he grinned.

She stuck out her tongue at him. “We’ll see about that, Dr. Chai.”

He winked, and placed a few tiles on the board. This time, he corrected her, with no hesitation. “C’mon, call me Ben.”

*

So, what do you think this time (yes, especially after such a long time. Did you forget all about the characters? Lol.)? All comments, whether compliments or criticisms, are fully welcome. 🙂 Remember to click on the comments button, or leave me a message on the tagboard to let me know! I really hope this chapter makes up for the super long wait. :-S

There and Back Again; Chapter 1

21 Jul

Hey everyone! I don’t know if you still remember that prologue to my fic which I posted quite sometime ago, but finally, I’ve got the first chapter together. Here’s who’s who in my fic, and a little peek into their character and history. Remember to let me know what you think – I’m really nervous with this fic and writing it, because I’m not sure what you guys enjoy reading. Here we go!

*

There and Back Again; Main Characters

Moses Chan Ho
Dr. Lam Man Chung/MC
Top neurosurgeon at Yan Sang Hospital. Will most likely be chief of his department once the current chief of neurosurgery retires. Renowned surgeon and excellent as what he does, this character is modelled after Moses’ MC character in HH II and III. Handsome, intelligent and arrogant, his cool demeanour makes him Yan Sang’s most eligible, yet unattainable bachelor. Does not get along with his younger brother Michael. Their parents are divorced, with his father passing away recently, and his mother nowhere to be found. The person he considers closest to family is Lan Yee, the long-time faithful family helper.

Raymond Lam Fung
Dr. Chai Fung/Ben
Completed his medical internship and several years of his residency in the States where he had first obtained his medical degree. Transfered back to Hong Kong not long ago to care for his parents. Has been accepted at Yan Sang to complete his residency. Long-time friends of Noelle and Suet Lei, the trio are finally reunited after his many years in the US. A filial son, commited worker and kind at heart, his amiable and easy-going personality make him well-liked by many. Although witty, outgoing and flirty by nature, he’s always pushed love to the back of his life queue.

Bosco Wong Chung Chak
Lam Man Kit/Michael
The second and youngest son of the rich Lam family, and born with a golden spoon in his mouth. Fresh after graduate school, he has been jobless for a year, and still goes about his partying and womanising ways, living off the family fortune left behind by his late father. Like his brother, he can’t stand his sibling’s guts either, but treats Lan Yee very well, who just might be the only woman in the world he has treated with such respect thus far. Cocky, fun-loving and immature, he has never felt love, although he doesn’t know it.

Bernice Liu Bik Yee
Man Po Yee/Noelle
Sensual, vivacious and beautiful, she is an aspiring model-actress who has trouble committing. Going through boyfriends as quickly as fashion changes, she keeps only her dear friends near. However, despite her shell of an appearance, she is very vulnerable insides. Growing up with Suet Lei’s family has given her the parental love she lost when she was young; Suet Lei is the sister she never had. Together with Ben, the three of them leave behind the good old days of high school and learn to live and love.

Leila Tong Ling
Chan Ka Ching/Ah Ching/Ching Ching
A cancer patient for the past five years, she has been in and out of Yan Sang hospital more times than she can remember. Through out these past years, she has formed a strong sisterly relationship with Suet Lei, who is one of the nurses at Yan Sang. With a strong will to live, she has overcome every single medical obstacle life has thrown her thus far with her positive outlook and bubbly personality. However, a recent relapse brings her back to Yan Sang again, and she builds up the strength to fight all over again.

Tavia Yeung Yi
Tam Suet Lei
Simple and normal – these two words sum up all she needs from life. A nurse at Yan Sang, she goes about her responsibilities with heart and commitment. Always never daring to hope for more than necessary, she is often admonished by her closest friends, Noelle and Ben, to live life outside the box for once. Has a good friendship with Ka Ching, one of the patients at Yan Sang as well as a warm-loving family.

*

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Chapter 1 – The Calm Before the Storm

“Calm before the storm set it off
And the sun burnt out tonight.

A reception less than warm set it off
And the sun burnt out tonight.”
– Fall Out Boy, Calm Before the Storm.

“Po Yee!” Suet Lei (Tavia Yeung) yelled as she poured some juice into a glass. “Get up, you pig!”

An incoherent mumble came from the top of the stairs. “Nggggghhhh. Why do you feel the need to yell every morning?”

Suet Lei rolled her eyes. “Hey, you asked me to wake you up at nine today, and that’s exactly what I did,” she said, nodding towards the clock. “Come on, eat up, or you’ll be late.”

Noelle (Bernice Liu) shuffled to the table in her bunny slippers and plopped down, her long curly hair tousled from sleep. “Morning shift today?”

“Uh huh, one of the attending doctors got promoted, and Ben’s taking over all his patients, so I’ve gotta go make sure that goes smoothly.”

“Wow,” Noelle noted. “Does that mean Ben’s next in line?” She’d known Ben from high school; they’d been lab partners the first year and had been good friends ever since. She’d roped in Suet Lei into their friendship, and as fate would have it, Ben and Suet Lei were now working at the same hospital. “You really should consider him, you know. He’s hot,” she winked.

“Are you sure you’re supposed to refer to one of our closest guy friends like that?” Suet Lei rolled her eyes. “Besides, ew, he’s so close that it’s incest.”

“Well, he doesn’t have to know. He’d get conceited anyway, if he knew I thought he was hot,” she laughed. “How is he, anyway? I can’t believe I’ve only seen him twice since he came back from that job in the States. Okay wait, you know what, on second thought, do not go after him, he’s practically married to his job.”

“You’re rambling,” Suet Lei noted dryly.

“But you’re listening,” Noelle shot back affectionately, and the both of them started giggling. The both of them could banter back and forth like that for hours, but it was all affectionate. The both of them had grew up next to each other, and when Po Yee’s parents died when she was 8, she spent most of her time next door, and was the older sister Suet Lei never had. Only that Suet Lei was the more responsible one, and Po Yee was the more carefree one. It was a role reversal that worked for them, and that had strengthened this fourteen year friendship.

Suet Lei checked her watch, and downed the last of her juice. “Okay, enough!” she admonished when Noelle continued giggling. “I’ve got to run; I’m going to be late. See you later!”

“Say hi to all the good-looking doctors for me!” Noelle yelled as Suet Lei was halfway out the door.

“Finish your toast!” came the answer, and the door slammed shut.

Noelle smiled to herself, shaking her head, and stuffed the last of her toast into her mouth, enjoying the silence of the house while it lasted. Suet Lei’s parents would soon be back from the taichi lessons at the park and the market respectively, and her younger brother would be wrapping up his morning job right about now. The entire family were such early birds that it made her feel like a complete pig at times.

Remembering their earlier conversation about Ben, she flipped her phone open and texted him to see if he wanted to meet her and Suet Lei for lunch. “I wonder if the workaholic even takes lunches these days,” she wondered out aloud, giggling to herself as she awaited a reply.

It would be just like the old days.

*

MC Lam (Moses Chan) glanced critically at his brother over the top of the morning papers. Disheveled and barely out of bed, his younger brother shoveled a forkful of eggs into his mouth.

“What?” Michael (Bosco Wong) met his gaze defiantly.

“Why don’t you get a job?”

He raised an eyebrow. “I told you, I’m still looking.”

“Maybe you should look harder.”

Michael snorted. “Why does it matter to you?”

MC shook his head and returned to the morning headlines. He knew his parents had told him to look after his brother before they had passed away, but he was a fully grown adult. Wait, make that fully grown useless adult. If he wasn’t going to bother, why should he?

A girl, dressed in a crumpled tank top and jeans came down the stairs, her hair messy. Taking one last look at Michael, her expression changed when he didn’t notice. “Bye, Michael,” she said pointedly.

Michael finally glanced up. “Bye,” he said coolly, his eyes returning to his breakfast.

MC glanced after her as she stomped noisily out of their front door past Lan Yee. “Is that a different girl from the one that came down yesterday?”

“Yeah, but this one isn’t as annoying.”

“It might do you some good to stop fooling around.”

Michael snorted. “I’ll take advice from people who actually deserve to dish it out, thanks very much. Don’t think I didn’t hear you and your new flavour of the week last night in bed. Walls in this house aren’t all that thick.”

MC shrugged. “It’s different,” he said coolly.

“Right,” Michael rolled his eyes. “We both enjoy women. We’re both players. But at least I have the balls to admit it.” Standing up, he tossed the magazine he was reading on the table, and jogged up the stairs, the sound of his room door slamming heard a few seconds later.

Lan Yee watched the interaction with a heavy heart. As much as they both would deny it, the two brothers were actually emotionally more alike that they ever knew. Sure, MC had the career, the golden reputation in the medical world, while all Michael did was grace magazine covers with his rich-boy flings. ‘But, in actual fact, both of them shared far more in common than they realized’, she lamented to herself. She loved them both like they were her own sons, for she was the only parent figure that was around when they were little toddlers.

“Lan Yee?” MC’s voice shook her out of her thoughts. “Are you all right? Did Michael’s slamming of the door startle you?”

She shook her head. “No, I’m fine.” Pausing for awhile, she then spoke again. “Maybe you shouldn’t be so hard on your brother sometimes.”

“You shouldn’t spoil him you know.”

Lan Yee smiled. That was the same answer he gave her all the time. “I spoil you too. Do you think you would have just the right amount of sugar in your coffee every morning, if I didn’t?”

MC smiled. “I’ll come home early for soup tonight, I promise.”

*

“Nurse, where are my white lilies? And my handpicked blue M&Ms?” Chan Ka Ching (Leila Tong) demanded, placing one hand on her right hip.

Suet Lei mock-glared at her as she walked into the room. “Well, Ms. Diva, the last I checked, your name wasn’t Britney Spears, or even anything remotely famous.”

Ka Ching giggled. “Oh come on, where’s the morning humour?”

“Flushed down the toilet with the bowels of the patient in Room 432’s.”

“Oh, you are so disgusting.”

“But I’m your favourite friend at this hospital anyway, admit it,” Suet Lei laughed.

“I don’t know. Dr MC Lam’s pretty hot. He could be my new favourite.”

Suet Lei rolled her eyes. “You had better join the long, long queue, if you’re going to join his fan club. Certified playboy, never stuck with the same woman for more than three weeks, or that’s what the gossip queen at the nurses’ station is saying.”

“I bet she’s been trying to get his attention since Day 1 and has miserably failed,” Ka Ching giggled.

“That’s probably why she’s been so bitter about it.” The both of them laughed. “But I didn’t think he was your type anyway, Ah Ching.”

“Nah, he’s not. Too cool for a girl like me.”

“Yeah, me too. I just want to find someone normal.”

Ka Ching smirked. “See now, you’ve gone and jinxed it. You’re probably never going to find that boring, nice man you’ve always dreamed about.”

“Hey! What’s wrong with being nice?” Suet Lei protested.

“Nothing. It’s just that it wouldn’t hurt you to live dangerously for once,” Ka Ching winked.

“Dangerous? Me? Hah! You have got to be kidding me. Now, take your pills and I’ll be back in an hour’s to check on you.”

*

“Hey, free tmrw, Mr. Hotshot? Suet Lei and I wanna have lunch with you…okay by you?”

Shaking his head, Ben (Raymond Lam) quickly texted a reply and put his phone back into his pocket. Over the years, he had lost count of the many nicknames Noelle had conjured up for him. Absent-mindedly, he walked down the hall, rattling off patient history in his head as he went along. Taking over all of Dr. Chan’s patients was not going to be an easy feat. It would probably mean late nights and off-days being constantly on call, but that wasn’t going to deter him. He thrived on it.

Knocking on the first door on his right, he heard a sunny ‘come in’ before pushing it open. “Morning,” he said cheerfully.

His patient smiled at him. “Hi,” she paused, reading off his name tag before continuing. “Dr. Chai.”

Ben returned her smile. “Please, just Ben. Between you and me, the whole Dr. Chai thing makes me feel ten years older.”

Ka Ching winked. “See, you look more like a ‘Ben’ than a ‘Dr. Chai’, anyway. Where’s Dr. Chan?”

“Dr. Chan got promoted, and his patients got passed on to me,” Ben checked her charts, and noted down her stats.

“And he didn’t even come say goodbye?” Ka Ching feigned hurt. “I’m heart-broken. Me and him, we had a special thing going on, you know. He’d bring me an apple, I’d knit him a scarf. Things like that.”

Ben smirked, one of his eyebrows raised. “Interesting.”

“Yup, and now he got promoted and forgot all about me and just passed me to you?” she mirrored his smirk. “Real smooth of him.”

“Well,” Ben leaned a little closer and put on a conspirational tone, “Considering the fact that he’s twice your size and a good thirty years older than you, the last time he had to be smooth was probably what, three decades ago? I’d say he’s a little out of practice.”

“Hey, you don’t have to be young to be smooth,” Ka Ching retorted. “Are you implying that you’re smooth?”

He laughed a little under his breath. This was turning out to be a good morning already. “Maybe. We’ll see.”

She laughed with him, and he decided that he liked the sound of her laughter. Ringing, melodic, sweet. “So, I’m in good hands, eh?”

“You could say that,” Ben smiled, and hung her charts back on the foot of her bed. “Now, off to my other patients, or else they’ll accuse me of forgetting them too. I’ll tell Dr. Chan you said hi.”

Ka Ching smiled to herself as he left the room, humming a tune to herself. Suddenly, the sky seemed bluer and somehow, she found herself waiting eagerly to the next time Dr. Chai would come in to check on her again.

*

Author’s note: There you go! All six characters introduced and have made an appearance – any thoughts? Is it too long? Criticisms? Suggestions? Questions? Come on, talk to me. 🙂

TVB Spree

19 Jul

Hey everyone! I know it’s been ages since I’ve updated. Been rather busy what with the start of the second semester, going back to uni, searching for cheap second-hand books, and all the other boring stuff you do when you resume classes.

Also been on a TVB-watching spree – finished off Heart of Greed, To Grow With Love and Devil’s Disciples. I have a lot of comments on all three shows, as I always do, and will do a full write-up, hopefully sometime soon.

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Heart of Greed
Cast: Lee Sze Kei, Ha Yu, Susanna Kwan, Michelle Yim, Moses Chan, Linda Chung, Bosco Wong, Tavia Yeung, Louis Yuen, Raymond Lam, Yoyo Mung, Chris Lai, Fala Chen, Carrie Lam, and the list goes on. 

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The star-studded cast.

 

But just briefly, a few words on all three series. Heart of Greed started out so strongly, and maintained that throughout the series, but for me, failed at the final hurdle. Sadly. I didn’t feel fulfilled with the final episode, for some reason or another. Maybe because it felt like I was promised a better ending than the one we were given. That aside, I really did love the entire cast. The veterans delivered stellar performances, and I believe “Dak Dak Dei” will put Moses amongst the front-runners for Best Actor at this year’s TVB Anniversary Awards.

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To Grow With Love
Cast: Myolie Wu, Andy Hui, Jack Wu, Selena Li, Claire Yiu, Matthew Ko, Gigi Wong, Eddie Kwan, Cheung Chi Kwong, Natalie Wong

To Grow With Love had so much potential, I thought. Myolie was really adorable with the weight she gained. It started off rather funny, but midway, it crashed and burned for me. It started grating on my nerves and instead of having heart and humour, it got nonsensical and pointless at times. I ended up watching to the end, only because I can’t stand not finishing a series I start (oh, if only I felt the same way about homework, heh) and only for the supporting characters, i.e. Jack Wu and Selena Li‘s characters.

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Devil’s Disciples
Cast: Bosco Wong, Kevin Cheng, Bernice Liu, Sharon Chan, Wayne Lai, Shirley Yeung, Eddy Ko, Johnson Lee, Lee Kwok Lun, Patricia Liu, Oscar Leung, Chan Hoi Yee 

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I quite liked the costumes in this series, maybe it’s because I haven’t seen an ancient series in almost forever. Although, I can’t understand why all the guys don’t have the typical long plait that men are depicted to have back then.

 

As for Devil’s Disciples, I really didn’t think it was as bad as a lot of the people on various chatboxes around the TVB blogging world said it was. I might have had it a lot easier than they had since I was already a fan of Bosco and Bernice individually to begin with. Bosco was a lot more at ease with the happy-go-lucky, simple character compared to his role in HOG, and I enjoyed Bernice as the strong ‘tai si jeh‘. Sharon Chan was surprisingly more convincing than I thought she would’ve been. Wayne Lai proves again that he can do no wrong, unlike the ending of the series, which frustrated me. The song and dance routine, while hilarious, was absolutely pointless.

The Drive of Life has been raking in high ratings for its debut, and the released pictures of Michael and Sheren’s relationship make me want to watch it straight away. Anyone seen it? If so, what do you think?

The Tangled Web of TVB; #1.

11 Jul

TVB and the entertainment industry in Hong Kong is a big Asian market, and what with the dozens of series filmed a year and the hundreds of interviews and promotions their actors and actresses carry out to promote their series and their personal commitments to sponsors, you can be sure many relationships and ties will be forged. Put that together with the awfully innovative pens and magically cropped pictures of the dog-eat-dog HK paparazzi, you can be sure that these relationships will be completely spiced up. The supposed relationships and rumours that these people conjure up make up such a big part of the industry, that I couldn’t not have a section covering these interesting partnerships and bonds.

The Tangled Web of TVB will be an ongoing feature (or rather, I hope it’ll be) in this blog featuring the many different relationships between artistes and/or characters that occur, be it through coincidence, things they could have in common, mutual friends or just an interesting little tidbit that I have to share about these artistes.

Today’s first article, might not be as meaty a piece as what you might have been hoping for (mainly because I don’t possess the imagination which the HK reporters do, lol), but it’s a very interesting tidbit which I’ve realised just recently.


The Tangled Web of TVB; #1: The Common Factor


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In 2003, it was Triumph in the Skies that shot this group of four young, intelligent pilots into stardom. After the series aired, all eyes were on these four relatively new actors. Dubbed S4, short for ‘Solar 4’, by netizens, Ron Ng Cheuk Hei, Sammul Chan Kin Fung, Bosco Wong Chung Chak and Kenneth Ma Kwok Ming were the hot male newcomers of TVB.

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The following year, TVB named six young male artists to promote the 2004 Athens Olympics. These were the cream of the crop of young actors, often still labelled the ‘Six Olympic Stars’ until today. The Triumph in the Skies bunch were all named, along with the already-widely-popular Raymond Lam Fung, and the fresh new face in TVB acting class graduate Chris Lai Lok Yi.

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Then, just last year, yet another promotional group was named, this time for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Three out of the ‘Six Olympic Stars’ were retained, and Kevin Cheng Ka Wing was added to the bunch.

Solely based on TVB management and promotional strategy, if you asked me to name you a list of the new generation ‘siu sungs’, it would be these seven.

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The recent World Cup quartet are undoubtedly the most favoured young actors in TVB at the moment. Kevin Cheng winning latest TVB Best Actor award, although I strongly disagreed with the award, and his good looks, coupled with his good relations with TVB executives, definitely puts him in the top four.

As for the other three, it goes without saying. These three would be on the tips of everyone’s tongues, if I had asked you to name me three young, successful TVB actors. The previous winners of the TVB Most Improved Actor award, Raymond, Ron and Bosco have definitely carved quite a name for themselves, being cast in one big production after another. Bosco tops the list with Dicey Business, HOG and Jewel’s Splendour, while Raymond and Ron are both in the Drive of Life, and HOG and Brink of Law respectively.

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Until this year’s TVB Anniversary Awards, Kenneth Ma is still the current holder of the Most Improved Actor award. However, IMO, he does not possess the success and the pizzazz of the other three previous winners just yet, and has not been casted in any such grand productions in a major role.

Sammul Chan is the only one left out of the S4 who hasn’t won that award yet, and while I felt that he deserved it at that point in time before some of them, rumour has it that he hasn’t won because he was not a contracted TVB artist. However, he’s back to filming with TVB, and if I remember correctly, might even have signed on with TVB (could someone please tell me if I’ve gotten this right?), so that’s good for him.

Chris Lai has not been mentioned nearly as much as the others have, but after watching Heart of Greed, and the current screening of The Green Grass of Home, I think it’s safe to say that he’s gaining popularity and should be on this list.

However, that’s not the point of this write-up. What I found most interesting, while making this list, was that there was one thing they all had in common. Obviously, they’re all male, young, promoted by TVB, popular, lusted after by millions of female fans, etc. You get my drift. But there’s one other thing they all have in common with one another.

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That’s right. All seven of these actors have been paired up with the beautiful Leila Tong Ling in numerous series over the years. I don’t know about you, but I found that rather surprising. It might have been expected, being that TVB doesn’t have a very large base of capable young actors and actresses, but however, I would have guessed that it would’ve been Leila. Don’t get me wrong, I love her, but I didn’t know, I would have guessed the female who had co-starred with all seven would have been someone like Myolie.

Here, let’s take a walk down memory lane with Leila and the seven guys.

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Kevin & Leila in Burning Flame II (2002)

This was the first series in which I ever saw Kevin and Leila acting. They’re both extremely easy on the eyes, but their characters seemed too different, and his character Mark was actually using her to get promoted, if I remember correctly. Nevertheless, they did have a few cute scenes together, albeit nothing that memorable. Leila looks so young with her long, straight hair.

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Raymond & Leila in The Last Breakthrough (2004)

Definitely one of my favourite Leila pairings. Ken and Ching Ching were such a lovely couple to watch, from all their bickering, and his blatant flirting with her all the time, and later on, when she realised she loved him, and how she stuck by him and waited for him during his sickness.

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Chris & Leila in Ten Brothers (2005)

I’ve never watched Ten Brothers, just a short promotional trailer and a few clips here and there. I’m not exactly sure if they ended up together, or if they were both in a love triangle with another one of Chris’ brothers in the series. They do look pretty cute together, though.

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Bosco & Leila in Aqua Heroes (2003), The Last Breakthrough (2004) and Life Made Simple (2005)

Three times they’ve worked together, and all three times it was great to watch. Their puppy-love relationship was adorable in Aqua Heroes. In The Last Breakthrough, although I loved Ken and Ching Ching, I have to admit, the Bosco/Leila scenes where he was secretly crushing on her were also great to watch. In Life Made Simple, they both portray the most mature relationship in their partnership on-screen; Leila was a fantastic devious Angel in angel’s clothes (horrible pun intended) who in the end, realised that she had indeed really fallen for Michael. It’s no surprise that this pairing has tons of fans.

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Ron & Leila in Twin of Brothers (2003) and War and Destiny (2006)

I was rooting for Ron & Leila in Twin of Brothers, because there was just that something that I liked about their relationship. I can’t place my finger on it exactly, but I remember liking it. They also look compatible together. I haven’t watched War and Destiny in full, just little bits here and there again, but I really want to because I’ve read some good reviews, it looks rather compelling and Leila apparently plays her most mature role yet, so I really want to catch it. Plus, apparently Ron and Leila’s characters have a very bittersweet relationship in the series, and I’m a sucker for those.

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Sammul & Leila in Bar Benders (2006)

I’ve always wondered if they would ever be paired up in a series together. Both of them are cute and look so youthful, that they would look adorable together. This is definitely one series I want to watch, although Adam Cheng usually annoys me; I’m willing to watch for the Sammul/Leila storyline. Both of them also apparently acted very well in here.

Extra info: I was searching around for pictures for this post last night, and I stumbled across this radio clip where Leila has to call a co-star up and play a prank on him/her. She chooses to call Sammul, and his reaction to it is pretty funny. Click here to hear it!

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Kenneth & Leila in The Family Link (2007)

Haven’t watched this either, although it’s one I’m hyped up about catching. However, I don’t think they look as good together physically, compared to the way Leila matches the rest. They have a pretty large fanbase already, so I’m hoping that they have an abundance of chemistry.

What’s up next? Leila has finished filming in the mainland for The Last Princess, in which she’ll have somewhat of a relationship with Sammul, for the second time. She’s also now in the midst of filming The Hidden Master, where she’ll apparently be paired with Kenneth Ma. Fans of both pairings can rejoice.

Which one is your favourite Leila pairing out of these seven young actors? Who would you like to see her co-star with again?

*Screencaps are from the awesomely comprehensive gallery at Leila-Tong.com. Other pictures from TVB Chinese News Collection and spcnet.tv.