I ADORE HIM
(The Words on the Note (7)
The third time that Gu Yusheng had heard the words “Qin Zhi’ai” was at an award ceremony after the midterm exam.
She was a sophomore while he was a senior. The juniors were sitting between them, so there was some distance between them.
The principal began by announcing the top 10 seniors, describing their social studies, and then proceeded to the top 10 juniors and sophomores.
As the principal was announcing the juniors, Gu Yusheng and Wu Hao left to use the restroom, where they leaned against the wall and smoked half a cigarette. By the time they returned to the ceremony, the juniors had received their awards, and the principal was announcing the sophomore awardees.
The principal announced the sophomores starting with number 10 to finally the top student in the entire class: It was Qin Zhi’ai.
Xu Wennuan had always been loud, but when Qin Zhi’ai was announced as the number one student, she screamed like she had won five million dollars. Even the seniors sitting in the back could hear her shrieking.
Back then, Wu Hao was already Xu Wennuan’s boyfriend, and when he heard his girlfriend screaming he followed her. When Qin Zhi’ai and others lined up on the stage, Wu Hao showed off to all the people around them, despite his own lackluster grades. “This is my Nuannuan’s bestie. She is pretty and super smart. She not only has a pretty face, but she also possesses a brilliant brain. A true goddess!”
There’s a saying that the third time’s a charm. Gu Yusheng had never had a chance to hang out with Qin Zhi’ai, and he hadn’t thought about her, until now. Upon hearing her name for the third time, he began to pay attention. Those around him began sharing her accomplishments.
“Qin Zhi’ai is the sophomore 400-meter dash winner. And though she’s only recently joined our school, she’s already beat Liang Doukou as the prettiest girl in school.”
“I heard Qin Zhi’ai represented sophomores to attend the Olympic competition, and they won first place!”
“On Christmas, Qin Zhi’ai received so many gifts and love letters that she couldn’t fit them all in her drawer.”
“Qin Zhi’ai ranked number one on the final exam again.”
He hadn’t met the fastest girl, the smartest sophomore, and the prettiest girl in the school until he had finished his first semester as a senior and she had finished her first semester as a sophomore.
After the ceremony, a group of them went ice-skating. The night before, though, Gu Yusheng had played computer games at the internet cafe all night and gotten no sleep at all, not making it home until 10 the next morning. While lying on his stomach on his bed to catch up on some sleep, his father had returned and had no desire to be home on New Year’s Eve.
Gu Yusheng’s father didn’t come home often and, when he did, he was assumed to be drunk. On this particular night, his father had begun cursing and throwing things on the floor as his mother cried.
Because his father’s hatred did not stop with her, his father then had started knocking on Gu Yusheng’s door. Unable to get any sleep and to avoid a confrontation, Gu Yusheng had taken a shower to go ice-skating with Wu Hao.
Before getting out of the house, his father had scolded him and shouted his name to try to stop him, but Gu Yusheng hadn’t listened. His father had grabbed an ashtray and thrown it on his son’s back, causing serious pain.
Lacking sleep and now with an injury to his back, Gu Yusheng could not have been more annoyed. By the time he got to the ice-skating rink, he didn’t want to talk to anyone, so he leaned against the wall and quietly smoked.
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