"you speak as if you know them well,"
jianyi states with no little amusement, tone lilting. "i'm glad."
and a little interested, if she were to be honest. she knew so little of sealight-her managers, her staff, kyungmi by name, a couple more stylists, and that was it. she had met up with the leaders, of course, but they weren't familiar. she could never remark upon them in the same way, unless it was about what they ordered for lunch, and even then she would be at somewhat of a loss. she would like to place the blame on the others and how they disliked delilah, that they persecuted the group. no such thing seemed apparent-they worked underneath the same company, after all. and there was, apparently, no dislike in sealight. apparently they were being run into the ground, and dying at that rate took too much energy for petty rivalries. pity. jianyi had possible rivalries in spades. maybe in a rival-off, she would win. or perhaps rosegold-had they mingled with the rookie groups, yet? it would be sure to be fascinating. hopefully their comeback would live up to expectations. she knew delilah's would. it wouldn't be delilah if it didn't, would it? still...the thought of a comeback made her purse her lips. she wouldn't have time for little shopping trips, luxuries of time.
"i think about it, sometimes," jianyi says. she smiles at her hands, which are covered in fabric, and folds up the shirt again, placing it on a pile of clothes. she does. it keeps her up at night, and then she berates herself over it because jianyi's never really been interested in politics, why does it bother her now? but it's not really a issue of politics and law and society-it's a human issue. it's something that concerns all of them, not just women or men or nonbinary people. mani wanted to be an idol. that was good. she didn't need to want to be a human-she was already one, so there was no need, honestly. some people were still finding their humanity. mani needed no such journey-she seemed happy where she was. and there jianyi was, spouting all the sage nonsense that she was unaccustomed to actually giving. it was perhaps better suited to a romance novel from years ago, or perhaps some coming of age story that someone got inspired to write after reading a greeting card with pink and golden glitter. ah, no, now she was thinking of rosegold again-which was not her intention. nonetheless, she continues. "isn't it natural to? we're all affected by it, so it's not like i'm discussing some theory that's completely unknown to me. you must know the feeling, mani."
"empowerment doesn't mean molding yourself into anything. it doesn't mean presenting yourself a certain way in order to make others feel empowered. i think that's something that i struggle with, myself. i'm...generally not one that a person would describe as being revolutionary or empowering in any way. i try to be myself as much as possible, though. when it comes down to it. there's no point of trying to motivate and inspire others if you can't be who you really are. of course, the second doesn't apply to you, but how is it not aspiring to look at rosegold? the entertainment industry is harsh, but you've gone through it at such a young age. and you've triumphed-your success is flowing out of the ground." she plays with the tag of a dress, pulling it against her frame. the fabric is off-white and flowy, with a belt around the middle. it's too short. she puts it back. "i guess what i'm basically trying to say is that empowering others is good. you're here to entertain, and that means bringing emotion out of people. but don't modify who you are to achieve your intended effect. how can you expect others to be themselves when you yourself am not being totally honest?"
"isn't it about how you present yourself?" jianyi says, her smile brightening. "i think you would look nice, personally, but that's just me. you have a very strong, distinct set of features. they're striking. they make you look twice. maybe people don't think you're beautiful at first, but their gaze is drawn again and again until they reconsider. you're fierce, but who said you can't be sassy and fierce?" she pauses, thumbing the material. it might look a little different than she imagined, but...mani's might be right. she puts aside the shirt, though she keeps it close to the other, nonetheless, as she does with the coat as well, winking at mani, and keeps on walking for a moment until she sees an entire outfit put together-coat, turtleneck, jeans, and all. she hesitates for only a moment before she snatches it off the rack, the other clothes swinging with the disruption. jianyi ignores it, speedwalking back to mani, and dumps it in her arms, piling it atop the other clothes that she had suggested wearing, and steers her towards the dressing rooms. if mani voices any objections, jianyi goes deaf temporarily. it's a stressful illness.
"try it on," jianyi says, her eyes twinkling. "i know you and i talk a lot, but it's time to act now, right? show me how you look."
and then she shoves mani through a door, stealing the placard with the chosen amount of items written on it, and hangs it on the door for her. there.