Surprise Resignation of Female Substitute Secretary

Chapter 35

Because of Su Tao's good reputation, a hot search about her was still trending, but suddenly her image took a moral downturn. It was accompanied by a GIF of Xie Jin in a show, saying the phrase "Your image is shattered" about Tian Yingying. This caused the hot search to gain even more attention.

The negative impact brought by this hot search continued to escalate, and the fans of Su Tao and Xie Jin's couple pairing began to turn against them.

They criticized Su Tao for being a hypocrite and a manipulative woman who used her innocent facade to win the affection of men.

Fortunately, their fan base wasn't that large to begin with, so it didn't cause much new damage. It simply added fuel to the fire in terms of popularity.

What worried Su Tao the most was that her bad reputation could affect the artists in her company. Just like how her good reputation had once helped the artists gain favor.

It's a case of "what goes up must come down."

Su Tao went to the company overnight and coordinated with her colleagues in the publicity department to suppress the hot search. She also worked with the technical department to find the ID of the person who first posted the image.

She had organized the suppression of gossip multiple times before, but she never expected that one day it would be used against her.

After a sleepless night, she finally managed to bring down the heat and prevent any harm to her company's artists. They also discovered the ID of the person who posted the image.

The username was "NoOvertime."

This Weibo account had been registered for over six years but had barely posted anything. The registered email address had no information, and Su Tao couldn't find anything unusual in the user's Weibo activity.

However, Su Tao's sharp eyes caught one Weibo post that shared a location, and it turned out to be the headquarters of Tian Jin.

Su Tao rubbed her tired eyes and told her colleagues from the technical and publicity departments that they had done a great job and should go home and rest. She then made her way to her own office.

She had been contemplating about the people who had conflicts with her during her time at Tian Jin.

But considering the timing and the people who had reasons to harm her, there were two main suspects: Qin Xuexi and Tian Yingying.

Her phone received a WeChat message from Xie Jin.

He sent her a bunch of files and screenshots, which were similar to what the technical department had found, but more precise than hers.

\[Xie Jin: I suspect it's Tian Yingying.\]

\[Xie Jin: The photo you received before, it should also be from her.\]

\[Xie Jin: That photo was taken from a video, and I will find that video to prove my innocence.\]

What he found matched her own speculation.

Su Tao locked her phone and pondered. Suddenly, a pair of red pointed high heels stopped in front of her, and a wave of anger rushed toward her, breathless and intense.

As Su Tao looked up, a hand with palm wind swung towards her. With quick reflexes, Su Tao grabbed the hand.

When she saw the person in front of her clearly, Su Tao was taken aback.

"Xiao Ru?"

Zhang XiaoRu pulled her hand back, widened her eyes, and glared at Su Tao angrily. She shouted, "What did you do with my identity? Do you still want to marry Haoxing?"

Hearing her mention the issue with her identity, Su Tao immediately grabbed her arm and lowered her voice, "Come to my office with me. Don't cause a scene here."

"Who's causing a scene?" Zhang XiaoRu shook off her hand and shouted even louder, "Su Tao, my best friend, stole my husband, how morally corrupt!"

Su Tao caught a glimpse of the crowd watching the commotion, and among them were some of Liu WanTao's people, some of whom had already taken out their phones, recording either audio or video.

"Zhang XiaoRu, if you want to know why Shang Haoxing didn't marry you, come to my office now."

Su Tao could only divert her attention by addressing the issue she cared most about, minimizing the impact of the situation.

"Anything that happened in the office just now, if any audio or video leaks out, the person responsible will be immediately fired!" Su Tao shouted before taking Zhang XiaoRu back to her own office.

Inside the simple office, Zhang XiaoRu sat in a chair while Su Tao stood in front of the closed door, arms crossed. Normally gentle, she now furrowed her brow and her eyes were bloodshot.

"Zhang XiaoRu, are you out of your mind? You actually believed the rumors online?"

"Can photos be faked?" Zhang XiaoRu stubbornly held her head high, took out the photos on her phone, and pointed at them confidently. "You two in this state, and you call it a misunderstanding?"

"These photos are out of context, clearly cropped from a moment in a video. Shang Haoxing and I were simply having a meal together."

Su Tao closed her eyes, trying to calm her emotions, and sighed as she looked at the confused woman in front of her. "Why did you come back? When Shang Haoxing went to find you before, you didn't come back, did you?"

"But what if I regret it now?" Zhang XiaoRu retorted with an unfriendly tone. "Didn't you say you would tell me why Haoxing suddenly rejected me?"

Su Tao sighed again, feeling infinite disappointment and regret for her former best friend. "XiaoRu, you should ask yourself that question. Shang Haoxing loved you so much, how did you lose him? He's a person, not a toy. You think you can easily pick him up after losing him?"

Zhang XiaoRu's brow gradually furrowed. She wanted to argue back but didn't know how. After a while, she thought of something and questioned Su Tao again. "Why did you use my ID card without permission?"

Su Tao didn't want to bring up that matter at this moment, but she needed to give her an explanation for using her identity. "I broke up with Xie Jin, and I used your ID card to avoid him. But what kind of mind do you have, to think that I would use your name to marry Shang Haoxing?"

Zhang XiaoRu's arrogance had diminished. When she saw the message from Shang Haoxing saying he didn't love her anymore, she immediately bought a plane ticket back to the country.

As soon as she got off the plane, she saw the hot search and suddenly learned about Su Tao's previous use of her ID card. Without thinking, she rushed over in a fit of anger.

After calming down, she realized that the reason wasn't really valid.

Zhang XiaoRu's voice softened, no longer as aggressive. "Is it true that there's nothing between you and Haoxing? He cried when he came to Chicago. Why did he suddenly stop loving me?"

Zhang Xiaoru choked up, tears welling up in her eyes and streaming down her cheeks. It seemed that she had become accustomed to silently crying over the past two years, which made Su Tao both angry and sympathetic.

"In fact, I regretted going to Chicago with that jerk after a few months. He's a scumbag! But I... I didn't dare to come back. I was afraid you would look down on me."

Unconsciously, tears welled up in Su Tao's eyes as well. Despite everything, she felt more compassion than blame for her once dear friend.

Xiaoru's mental state was indeed not good. Perhaps she still needed treatment.

The office door suddenly knocked open, and Su Tao unlocked it, opening it slightly. To her surprise, it was Shang Haoxing who was knocking on the door.

Through teary eyes, Xiaoru looked at Shang Haoxing, burying her face in her hands, unable to control her tears.

Xiaoru got into Shang Haoxing's car, and Su Tao expressed her concern, saying, "I think she should see a psychologist."

Shang Haoxing nodded. "Leave it to me. I'll talk to her first. I've clarified things on Weibo. Let me know if there's anything else I can do."

Su Tao nodded and watched them leave. As she walked back, she opened Weibo.

Just as she was about to refresh the trending topics, Lexuan ran over, breathless, and said, "Weibo! Boss, Xie Jin made a Weibo post!"

Before Su Tao could react, Liang Ke appeared out of nowhere, his eyes gleaming with gossip, excitedly saying, "It's real between you two!"

Su Tao's expression froze, and she had a bad feeling. She clicked on the trending topic.

The fifth trending topic was shocking and straightforward.

#Xie Jin Confesses to Su Tao#

Clicking on it, it was Xie Jin's first Weibo post ever, and he dedicated it to Su Tao.

Xie Jin: I have always loved you and never changed. @Jingyang Entertainment Su Tao.

The comments below were flooded with their fans.

"I never thought that one day I would ship a couple for real!" Liang Ke, with the air of a fan, was delighted and shedding tears.

Su Tao ignored him and the curious gazes of others, and returned to her office.

Online, the photos from the airport in Nan City were dug up. There was a photo of Xie Jin sitting next to Su Tao, making a phone call, but his gaze was fixed on her. Everyone realized that they had known each other for a long time. The photo was even used as a profile picture for the hashtag by their shippers.

After seeing Xie Jin's photos and status compared to Shang Haoxing's, netizens couldn't help but notice the significant difference in talent and looks, although they didn't go as far as to criticize Shang Haoxing like they would a celebrity.

So the question arose: with someone like Xie Jin pursuing her, how could she become the third party in Shang Haoxing's relationship?

This confession successfully shifted the attention from Su Tao's negative trending topic and turned the tide against those who were bashing Su Tao. People started questioning the authenticity of the black material.

Even a large number of netizens went to Su Tao's Weibo to wait for a response.

Meanwhile, Shang Haoxing and Xiaoru also posted their responses on Weibo.

"Shang Haoxing and Zhang XiaoRu both released lengthy clarifications, providing their perspectives on a certain matter:

The day before their wedding, Zhang XiaoRu suddenly went abroad without any contact, and Shang Haoxing was single, so there was no involvement of a third party.

Su Tao, their classmate, had a close relationship with both of them, and they had dinner together to console Shang Haoxing.

They felt sorry for involving Su Tao in this matter.

Once the clarification was out, everyone realized that they had wrongly accused Su Tao.

From a moral standpoint, there was no issue since the man was unmarried and the woman was not yet married.

Regarding the authenticity of their feelings, there was no reason for others to judge or gossip about it. It was a matter of personal choice, and there was no justification for insulting anyone.

Finally, Su Tao's Weibo account was updated, and the eagerly waiting netizens didn't know whether to cry or laugh upon seeing Su Tao's response.

Surprisingly, the post from Su Tao read: 'Sorry for using public resources. The contestants performed so well, I hope everyone supports them.'

She attached a video link showing the journey to becoming a group, with a video cover featuring a collaboration of six artists from Jingyang Entertainment.

Even at this time, they didn't forget to promote their own artists.

The netizens, who had been waiting for a long time, jokingly referred to Su Tao as the most dedicated manager in history.


In the afternoon, during the monthly team meeting, after Su Tao finished her report and looked at everyone, she asked if they had any further questions, as usual.

"Director Su, I have a question," a lively girl from the publicity department raised her hand and asked with a smile, "Is it true that you and CEO Xie are together?"

As soon as the words fell, the meeting room erupted with laughter and applause.

Su Tao didn't get angry or annoyed at everyone's teasing. She just lowered her gaze for a moment, then raised it again, and self-reflected, "As a manager, I should stand behind the artists and not take away the attention that rightfully belongs to them. I hope all the managers present take me as a warning and avoid making the same mistake."

After Su Tao finished speaking, the whole room fell silent. Everyone put away their playful attitude and sat up straight, burying their heads in the meeting minutes.

Satisfied, Su Tao picked up her laptop and returned to her seat to continue the meeting.

Her phone vibrated twice, and she took it out to see that it was from Jiang Qi.

\[Jiang Qi: Do you still like him?\]

\[Jiang Qi: Do you want to get back together with him?\]

Su Tao frowned slightly, a hint of impatience flashing in her eyes, and she replied briefly.

\[Su Tao: Focus on training. It's none of your concern.\]

Jiang Qi sent two more messages in succession.

Su Tao initially didn't want to respond to him, but when she saw the content, she couldn't help but examine Jiang Qi's thoughts.

\[Jiang Qi: Answer me.\]

\[Jiang Qi: I can't continue training.\]

\[Su Tao: Who I like, whether I want to get back together with someone, what does it have to do with you?\]

After a while, Jiang Qi finally replied.

\[Jiang Qi: You are my manager, and I have the right to know if your love life will affect your work.\]

Silently, Su Tao looked at his reply, feeling somewhat reassured, and her tone improved a little in her response.

\[Su Tao: Don't worry, I will never let anything affect my work. Focus on your training. I'm currently securing a major opportunity for you, and if it works out, your popularity will skyrocket.\]

When it came to work, Su Tao's face was filled with excitement as she envisioned the future. She passionately typed on her phone, "We're already halfway there, and I have the confidence to succeed. When the time comes, you'll be able to..."

\[Jiang Qi: So, are you planning to accept his offer to get back together?\]

Su Tao: "..."

Su Tao deleted the half-written sentence and immediately put her phone on silent, ignoring him.

Su Tao had originally intended to decline the recording for the new season of "The Road to Becoming a Group." However, to generate more buzz, the production team tempted Su Tao with a commercial endorsement.

Su Tao exhausted her remaining value and used one episode of the show to secure an endorsement deal, along with reserving eight spots for the next season's contestants.

The contestants who had been fearful of Xie Jin's criticisms in the previous season were relieved when they learned that Su Tao would be participating in this recording.

This was the second stage of the show's public performance, and the stage was much more dazzling than the initial stage. After a week of training, the contestants showed remarkable improvement.

To Su Tao's surprise, Tian Yingying did not participate in the new season's recording. There was no mention of her being eliminated, and it seemed as if her name had never existed in the first place.

Recalling the investigation results from Xie Jin, Su Tao had a guess in her mind. Tian Yingying must have been removed from the recording, and it was likely Xie Jin's doing.

To Su Tao's delight, Xue Xinzi had managed to overcome her fear of dancing. Even though she wasn't the best dancer, she exuded confidence while standing on stage, and her final ending pose was beautiful.

Having watched everyone's performances during the live broadcasts, Su Tao felt that everyone had made progress compared to their practice sessions.

During the feedback session, almost everyone received praise, and it was genuine, acknowledging everyone's dedication and hard work.

Among the praised contestants were those who had been subjected to Xie Jin's sharp criticisms in the previous season, feeling so discouraged that they had considered quitting. Suddenly, one of them burst into tears on stage and said, "After General Manager Xie's comments last time, I felt like I had no talent and couldn't do anything. I thought I was worthless... Thank you, Teacher Su Tao."

Xie Jin, who had been silently observing Su Tao and had become like a frozen image, was suddenly called upon. He looked at the crying contestant on stage and then at Su Tao, and he voluntarily took the microphone to defend himself.

"When did I ever say you were worthless? You can't make false accusations."

The words "make false accusations" were quite clever, and those present couldn't help but smile, as if they knew the secret to dealing with this poisonous-tongued, irritable boss.

One after another, the contestants started to complain to Su Tao on stage, saying that after Xie Jin's critique in the previous season, they had lost their confidence and had considered dropping out. Su Tao, like an angel, had encouraged them and given them the courage to continue.

"It's because your ability to handle pressure is weak," Xie Jin stared at the contestants making complaints, using his gaze to threaten them into silence.

As more people spoke up, Su Tao glanced over and calmly said, "The contestants also face a lot of pressure, so they should be given more encouragement, right, General Manager Xie?"

Xie Jin, who had wanted to defend himself, opened his mouth but eventually let out a sigh, nodded, and with a good temper, muted his microphone and lay down, accepting the self-deprecating mockery.

"Teacher Su Tao is right."