Outside the window, the sound of the blowing wind rolled down the corridor.
Meng Shengnan was dazed and dizzy, slowly raising her head from her arms. The boy stood in front of her, looking down at her. His brows furrowed a little, wanting to say something.
“Can you let me through?”
He raised his chin to point towards the desk and said, “I need to get something.”
The residual rays of the sunset in the classroom made him seem even more tall and straight.
Meng Shengnan was still in a trance as she recognized the person in front of her, thinking about the drawer that had long been cleared out by her. She drooped her eyes, enduring her strong heart beat and the cramps.
“Sorry, I arranged everything and put it on the podium, you can go find it over there.”
After hearing this, he glanced at her, then turned to the podium without saying anything.
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“Ubk Hbldt, byhl usw qswde uswa RP nyae ulv?”
Mbl csu eked’v alrzu, Yldt Fbldtdyd vbswtbv bl bye zlqv yzalyeu.
Mblal oyp y hytwl nsdhlapyvksd swvpkel—
“Tyhl usw qswde kv?”
“Mbld zlv’p ts iwknjzu, ol’hl yzalyeu satydkple y vkxl vs rzyu Eyanayqv zyvla.”
The voice was already too far to be heard, and that’s when Meng Shengnan finally raised her head and looked outside. Her stomach was so uncomfortable that she couldn’t even exert any energy to stand up. After a while, Qi Qiao came and was surprised to see her appearance.
Meng Shengnan frowned, reluctantly saying, “It might be chest pain, my stomach hurts suddenly.”
“What did you eat at noon?” Qi Qiao asked.
“Sweet and sour pork tenderloin with chilli sauce.”
“What do I do, I want to eat it too.”
Meng Shengnan: “…….”
The two sat in the classroom for another ten minutes, and Meng Shengnan finally regained some energy. The pain gradually dissipated, and she had a bit more vigor than before. The exams had only finished just a while ago, it was still bright outside. Qi Qiao chatted with her, trying to distract her.
“Meng Shengnan classmate.”
“You have kept this short hair for several years now, you should start growing it out.”
Meng Shengnan reached out and pulled Qi Qiao’s long hair.
“It’s so much trouble.”
“You are just lazy, do you know how beautiful girls are with long hair? Many boys have long hair complexes, don’t you understand?”
“Song Jiashu too?”
The appearance of Li Yan flashed in Meng Shengnan’s mind suddenly, she had long hair below her shoulders, delicate features, and a very lively smile. What’s more, her voice was sweet and soft, and she could act cute, no wonder boys all liked her.
“What are you thinking about?”
Meng Shengnan shook her head.
“By the way, guess who I just saw?” Qi Qiao smiled mischievously.
“The bastard and gangster in our No.9 High school.”
Meng Shengnan did not understand.
Qi Qiao: “I knew you wouldn’t get it. You, a good girl who follows the rules obediently every day, must have never heard of him.”
“Who is it?”
Meng Shengnan was taken aback.
Qi Qiao: “When I was coming to find you, I saw that he seemed to also be going to the classroom, but he was leaving when I came in. Isn’t he in this class? They are a group of boys who hang around in the internet cafes all day long. I feel disgusted just thinking about their stench.”
Meng Shengnan looked outside the window, without replying.
That night, Qi Qiao drove her back by bike. Sheng Dian called them to have dinner together. Qi Qiao took a biscuit and left. Meng Shengnan also didn’t eat much, she felt fatigued in her whole body and went back to her room to sleep before it even got dark.
Sheng Dian and Meng Jin watched TV in the living room.
“What’s wrong with this kid, sleeping so early?” Sheng Dian glanced at the second floor and couldn’t help but ask Meng Jin.
Meng Jin glanced at the direction of the second floor.
“You go up and have a look.”
Sheng Dian was shocked when she opened the door and went in.
Meng Shengnan was burning hot all over.
“Nan Nan?” She gently patted her awake.
Meng Shengnan was in a daze, she turned her body over and fell asleep again. When Sheng Dian finally woke her up, Meng Shengnan was still dazed. Meng Jin directly carried her to the nearest health clinic on the street. It was late at night at the time, so it took quite a lot of effort. It wasn’t until Meng Shengnan was given her IV drip that the couple felt relieved.
The IV drip was given for the whole night until Meng Shengnan’s fever went away at four o’clock in the morning.
Sheng Dian flashed a torch and Meng Jin carried his sleeping daughter back home, arriving at dawn. The couple had to change Meng Shengnan’s medicine all night so they hadn’t slept, so they were extremely tired at this time. Sheng Dian urged Meng Jin to go to bed as he had to work tomorrow morning, and she slept with her daughter. It was already nine o’clock in the morning when Meng Shengnan woke up.
Sheng Dian had already cooked breakfast and came to call her over. She was in a hurry to get dressed.
“Slow down, I’ll call Qiao Qiao and ask her to request leave for you.”
Meng Shengnan went ‘ah?’
“Ah what, you had a high fever in the middle of the night and you almost scared me and your dad to death.”
Meng Shengnan didn’t know what to do.
“But I have an exam today—”
“Isn’t it just a mock exam? How big of a deal is it? Okay, go wash up and eat.”
After eating, Sheng Dian accompanied Meng Shengnan to get her IV drip for half a day. In the health clinic, Sheng Dian had just changed the medicine.
“Mom, don’t you have any classes today?” She looked up and asked.
Sheng Dian sat by the bed and said: “There is a class in the afternoon, which just happens to be serving you.”
Meng Shengnan stuck out her tongue and smiled slyly.
“You have worked hard.”
“You talk glibly.”
Meng Shengnan laughed.
“How is your manuscript?” the woman asked again.
Meng Shengnan said: “I wrote a little, but then deleted it.”
“You’re just thinking too complicatedly.” The woman said sincerely.
“At the beginning, why did you support me writing, why didn’t you worry that I would desert my studies?”
Sheng Dian gave her a smile.
“Now we have something to talk about.”
Meng Shengnan asked: “What?”
“At first I didn’t agree, but it is all thanks to your dad. He said that it is very rare for you to have such a dream at this age, and that parents should support it to the end. As for your studies, it seems that you have not deserted your studies. Of course, if you could get into Peking University like Kang Kai–”
Meng Shengnan: “……”
When this topic came up again, Meng Shengnan could only pretend to be asleep.
After coming back from the health clinic that day, she sat in her yard and soaked up the sun all afternoon. Such a nice way to spend her day. The sky was blue, the clouds were white, everything was good. Being sick made her lazy.
When she went to school the next day, it was the morning recitation session.
Fusong didn’t go out for recitation, he just stayed in the classroom to do questions. Afraid of the cold, Meng Shengnan shrank in her seat. There weren’t that many people in the classroom. After a while, Fusong poked her back lightly with a pen.
Meng Shengnan turned her head and Fu Song looked at her.
“Why didn’t you come to the exam?”
“Oh, I had a fever for a day.”
“Is it serious?”
“I’m sitting here, what do you think?”
“So you’re completely healed?”
“The philosophical god has descended to the mortal world to care about the commoners now?”
“You can say that.”
Meng Shengnan: “……”
Fusong was recognized as the number one talent in the class, but his English was really average. For Old Wet’s English class, the academic committee passed down the corrected exam papers. Nie Jing stared at the paper in front of Meng Shengnan, her expression was really…
“Meng Shengnan, I finally know why the head teacher asked you to be the English class representative. Your grades are unbelievable.”
She spun her pen and thought to herself, she missed some exams so she was probably one of the lowest ranked in the class.
Xue Lin approached from the back row.
“My God, 139! You are the best at English in our class, right? It’s even possible that you are the best in the whole school.”
It turns out that her guess was somewhat correct. Old Wet praised Meng Shengnan for her results in English class. However, apart from her English results, her maths was really average.
After class, Nie Jing asked for advice.
“How did you learn English and what class did you enrol into?”
“Just read books and do the problems.”
“How are you so good?”
“Uh, maybe it has something to do with my recitation.”
It was summer vacation in their third grade of middle school, Meng Shengnan and Qi Qiao went to the Youth Institution to learn calligraphy. They then met a great god who had participated in a national English recitation competition. Qi Qiao asked the great god how to get good at English.
The great god said in an enigmatic manner, “Go back and memorize 20 articles first.”
So, they really went back to memorise it.
Coming out from just one summer vacation, their English really did improve by leaps and bounds. Since then, at the end of each exam, the two of them would pick the good readings in the English exam papers to memorize, and then discuss, ask questions and recite it. Over time, they developed this habit.
Nie Jing was surprised after listening to this.
“Are you being serious?”
“It can only be understood, it cannot be taught.”
“Who is that great god?”
Meng Shengnan said: “I still don’t know his name till this date, I only met him once through fate.”
“Sounds like you’ve been enlightened by the Mad Monk1a famous buddhist monk called Ji Dian.”
“He is much more handsome than the Mad Monk.”
“More handsome than Chi Zheng?” Xue Lin interjected.
The girl laughed without answering, and asked, “Have you never thought about getting a boyfriend?”
“Really?” Nie Jing asked this.
At that time, Meng Shengnan was still very innocent. Later on, when she came back for the evening study session while reciting her book, Fusong handed her his own math exam paper.
Meng Shengnan asked: “Why are you giving it to me?”
“I don’t need this, you can use it to revise.”
“You don’t need it?”
“Then I will copy the answers down and return it to you next time.”
Meng Shengnan smiled and began to look through the exam paper. Nie Jing also just returned and walked up towards her.
“Fusong’s math paper?”
Meng Shengnan said ‘Yep’.
“Can I take a look?” Nie Jing asked cautiously.
She didn’t realize that Nie Jing could look at this mock exam paper for nearly one whole evening session, and when it was finally returned to her, school was almost over. Meng Shengnan sighed a few times in her heart.
Nie Jing turned her head and asked: “What’s wrong with you, it seems that you don’t have energy.”
“It’s okay.” She coughed and smiled.
After recovering from her illness, Qi Qiao volunteered to be a chauffeur for free for the past few days. Thus, she obediently waited for Qi Qiao in the classroom. When she arrived, only Nie Jing and her were left in that side of the room.
“Are you not going yet?” Nie Jing asked.
Meng Shengnan said ‘oh’, “I’m waiting for my friend to go with me.” As she was saying this, Qi Qiao arrived.
“How do you feel after becoming a human again?” The girl put her arms around her as soon as she approached, asking with a cheeky smile.
Meng Shengnan poked her waist secretly with her hand, Qi Qiao immediately escaped from being tickled.
“You’re being so heavy-handed, careful I will abandon you tonight.”
Meng Shengnan said: “That’s rare.”
The two people were laughing happily. Nie Jing looked at them for a few seconds, and said when they stopped talking, “Then I will leave first Meng Shengnan.”
The person being called looked over and said, “Goodbye.”
The girl walked away. Qi Qiao carried Meng Shengnan’s schoolbag, and the two of them also walked out.
“That girl just then–” Qi Qiao paused halfway.
“It’s hard to say, she gives off a weird feeling.”
“It’s not that bad.”
On this late autumn night, the two walked side by side on the sidewalk.
The students walked past them in pairs and groups of threes from time to time. The roadside lights illuminated the exterior of the entire school building, with the science building in the front shining the most like a golden mountain. When Meng Shengnan passed by that building, she glanced at a classroom subconsciously.
Looking back without a reason.
After three days, the results of each subject were released, and Meng Shengnan missed four subjects and became the fourth lowest in the class. Because of this, she didn’t have the mock exam questions, so she could only copy down the important explanations to the questions. It was history class. Nie Jing put the exam questions between the two of them, and while listening, she kept pulling it towards herself to fix the answers. It became quite hard for Meng Shengnan to read it. After class, she didn’t know why she felt annoyed, so she went to find Qi Qiao.
The science building was much more active than the humanities one.
During break time, groups of students were lying on the railing and chatting in high spirits. Meng Shengnan stopped unconsciously after passing by Science (10), glanced inside quickly, and then slowly went upstairs. Qi Qiao’s class was on the third floor. She was currently flirting with Song Jiashu. Meng Shengnan didn’t dare to bother them, so she went downstairs and walked back.
Students passed by in the corridor.
Meng Shengnan just got down to the first floor, turned around, and saw a figure. When she had been going upstairs, there hadn’t been anyone there, but now, a group of boys had gathered at the end of the corridor, making funny remarks and laughing.
From a distance, she saw him standing in the middle with a cigarette in his hand.
Meng Shengnan took a deep breath, he was very bold, not even afraid of getting caught by the dean. She watched for a while, and the boy bit the cigarette in his mouth and smiled sullenly. In addition to him, there was also the boy who played games with him at the Internet cafe that day.
Several people put their hands on each other’s shoulders and backs, grinning.
“Shi Jin, your expression, tsk tsk, tell me how much money you lost?”
Shi Jin had his hand on his shoulder, shaking his head and sighing.
“I will get beaten up when I go home tonight.”
A boy went ‘f*ck, f*ck, f*ck’ and said: “Your math test was 50, look at you gloating.”
A group of people laughed.
Shi Jin patted him on the shoulder: “I say Chi Zheng, you have worked hard this time, your mathematics results was close to 140. But it’s just your English, tsk tsk, brother, I’m too embarrassed to say it.”
“What did you get again?” The boy next to him joked.
The boy who was asked bit his cigarette and smiled frivolously.
The group of students laughed to death.
“You got it, brother.”
Shi Jin: “Isn’t Li Yan good at English, she can tutor you.”
The boy took the cigarette and tapped it a few times, smiling meaningfully without saying a word.
Shi Jin: “Brother, I don’t have such a beautiful blessing like you, hey.”
Teasing laughter was heard again.
Meng Shengnan’s throat felt dry, after glancing a few more times, she searched her memory to remember Li Yan’s ranking on the list she saw this afternoon. She seemed to be 17th in the class, and for English–?
In the classroom, she asked Fusong.
Fu Song frowned, “Should I know?”
Meng Shengnan: “……”
After a while, Fu Song called her, and Meng Shengnan turned around.
Fu Song said: “79.”
In an instant, Meng Shengnan remembered the meaningful smile at the corner of the boy’s mouth.
[Translator’s Note: Surprise post! Ah, TL-ing this reminds me of how I was in high school too, somehow, you fall for a random boy and happen to keep noticing him and taking note of the people and things around him. Anyways, happy readings! I’m going to double post next week on Monday and Wednesday WOOOOOO! ]