Cheng Chu wasn't actually sad. She had spent almost the entire night practicing the piano because she had fallen behind on her homework. The thought of attending a music academy had resurfaced in her mind, knowing that her brother's death could have been avoided if she had taken a different path in life.
So these past few days, Cheng Chu had been catching up on schoolwork while also picking up the piano again.
As the bell rang, she closed her just-finished homework and looked up to see Luo Qianqian's worried face.
The girl's furrowed brows and cautious eyes made Cheng Chu's heart soften.
Turning her head, she saw Zhou Ran and Gu Miao both looking at her with concern.
She smiled and casually said, "I'm fine, really."
All three of them had the same look of disbelief, as if they didn't believe in putting on a brave face.
The air in the classroom was filled with a bone-chilling cold, but Cheng Chu felt a warm surge of water in her heart, making it feel both warm and full.
"Don't look at me like that, it makes me feel embarrassed," Cheng Chu knew they were all concerned about her, feeling a bit helpless but mostly warm.
Gu Miao pursed her lips slightly, her black eyes drooping slightly.
The classroom gradually quieted down as the teacher walked in with a stack of papers.
It was an English class for morning reading, but the teacher didn't make everyone read English, instead choosing to hand out test papers.
Lin Yue was the homeroom teacher for Class Three, as well as the English teacher, so the students in the class were all a bit afraid of her, but they were usually very enthusiastic about learning English.
Lin Yue curled her fingers and tapped the podium, and the students below sat up straight. "This time our class did pretty well overall, especially Cheng Chu, who got the highest score in English with 146 points, ranking third in the year level."
All eyes in the class turned to her.
Despite being stared at by so many pairs of eyes, Cheng Chu remained calm and composed.
She had lived abroad for a few years when she was young and returned to China to attend middle school, but her English skills never fell behind, so she always did well in this subject.
The reason why her grades dropped so much this time was entirely due to her lagging behind in physics and chemistry.
Lin Yue cleared her throat and continued, "Previously, Luo Ye transferred to Class 2, and the English class representative has been missing. Cheng Chu, you have been in our class for half a month now, and your classmates should be familiar with you by now. From now on, you will be the class representative for English."
Cheng Chu felt a bit lost as she looked at the gaze Lin Yue was giving her, and could only nod her head in a daze.
The quiet classroom was suddenly disrupted by Lin Yue's words, causing a stir.
"Is there a problem?" The teacher glanced over with a single look, her authority carrying great weight. With just a cold sentence, the noisy classroom instantly quieted down.
"If there are no problems, then I will continue. This afternoon, our class will rearrange the seating chart, and this time, you will choose your own seats."
The previously quiet classroom erupted once again. Choosing their own seats meant they could sit with their good friends, which was a huge temptation.
The classmates whispered to each other and exchanged glances with their close friends in secret.
Gu Miao's hand unconsciously curled up, and his dark eyes were fixed on Cheng Chu's back without turning away.
As he chose his seat, he couldn't help but think that no one would want to sit with him. A popular girl like her must have many people vying to sit with her, and surely she would choose a better spot than this cold corner.
Does this mean he can never sit behind her again, never be this close to her?
Gu Miao's heart shrank unconsciously.
Despite the joyous atmosphere in the classroom, he sat expressionless, his dark eyes cold as if the news just announced by the teacher had nothing to do with him. It felt like a small hole had been punctured in his heart, letting in a chilling wind that made him shiver.
Gu Miao lowered his head and took out a hot water bottle from his drawer, tightly clenching it in his hand. The water in the hot water bottle had long lost its warmth, and it felt icy cold to the touch. But Gu Miao still held onto it, as if seeking comfort from the coldness of the bottle.
The homeroom teacher looked sternly at the restless students below and slammed her hand on the desk.
"Quiet down," she shouted. "I haven't finished yet."
The classroom finally regained some calmness, and Lin Yue pursed her lips before continuing. "The order of seat selection will be based on the class ranking, with the top student choosing first and so on."
As she listened to the teacher's words, Cheng Chu couldn't help but think - does this mean that if Gu Miao agrees, she can sit at the same table as him?
Her ranking was eighth in the class, so she could choose her seat early. Gu Miao's grades have always been good. She knew that Gu Miao was excellent in physics and chemistry, but his English was slightly lacking, which prevented him from entering the top class.
If nothing unexpected happens, Gu Miao's grades should be in the top ten of the class, and he may even be better than her by a lot.
As long as he agrees, they will definitely be able to sit together.
Cheng Chu's heart was filled with joy, and her plain face gradually revealed a smile.
Luo Qianqian glanced at her, lowered her eyes, pursed her lips, and finally tugged at her sleeve and asked, "Chuchu, do you still want to sit with me?"
Her joyful heart was instantly doused with cold water, and Cheng Chu regretfully closed her eyes.
How could she, like a person who forgets her friends when she sees someone better, forget about Luo Qianqian?
The girl's bright eyes were filled with hope as she looked at her. The look in her eyes made Cheng Chu unable to refuse.
But the temptation of sitting with Gu Miao, her desk mate, was too great. She gritted her teeth and whispered, "I'm sorry, Qian Qian, I want to sit with Gu Miao."
Luo Qianqian's face fell in disappointment as she lowered her head and softly replied, "Oh, okay."
She had always struggled with her grades and felt insecure.
These days, Cheng Chu had tirelessly explained problems, organized knowledge, and helped her a lot.
"So, can I still come to you for help with problems I don't understand?" Luo Qianqian asked in a small voice.
Cheng Chu nodded, "Of course, anytime."
After school, the students gradually dispersed.
Cheng Chu grabbed Gu Miao as she passed by and said, "Gu Miao, can you wait for me? I have something to tell you."
Gu Miao lowered her gaze and looked at the girl's slender fingers, nodding her head. The classroom gradually emptied, leaving the hallway outside quiet and still.
Cheng Chu felt a bit uneasy as she straightened her clothes and finally looked up at Gu Miao's dark and stern eyes.
"Would you like to sit with me at the same table?"
Gu Miao stood frozen in place, his dark eyes revealing a hint of confusion. His voice trembled as he asked, "What did you say?"
Cheng Chu's peach blossom eyes were like a clear pool of water, bright and transparent, reflecting his cold and handsome face.
Gu Miao's heart was pounding, and he began to doubt his own ears.
The midday sun was shining brightly, and the warm sunlight streamed in. Cheng Chu was dressed warmly, and a thin layer of sweat appeared on her forehead.
She looked straight at Gu Miao, her eyes shining like the brilliant sunlight outside the window. "I said, would you like to sit with me?"
Gu Miao's fingers trembled, and he felt the warmth of the sun melting away the ice that had been weighing on him. It felt like living in a dream, she not only didn't leave the classroom, but also asked him if he wanted to sit with her at the same table.
The morning's anxiety and despair, self-loathing and self-abandonment, all melted away with the girl's words.
If this was a dream, he would rather never wake up.
Gu Miao looked at the girl's clear eyes and nodded heavily.
Cheng Chu didn't expect that when they rearranged the seating, Luo Qianqian and Zhou Ran ended up sitting together, and the four of them still sat in the corner of the classroom, just with slightly different positions.
Zhou Ran had originally wanted to continue sitting with Gu Miao, he thought Gu Miao was not bad, not like how he appeared on the surface, cold and aloof.
But unexpectedly, Cheng Chu had beaten him to it. Most of the class had already secretly agreed on their plans.
He and the equally solitary Luo Qianqian quickly agreed and, after discussing with Cheng Chu, they decided to choose a corner of the classroom.
It was the end of class and the classroom was noisy. The three of them gathered together and chatted excitedly.
"Cheng Chu." The girl sitting in front of Cheng Chu turned her head and called out her name loudly.
The sudden interruption naturally made the three of them unhappy, as they were in the midst of a lively conversation.
Cheng Chu stopped and looked at the girl, Lin Luo, somewhat puzzled. She knew that Lin Luo liked to form small cliques in the class and often gathered together after class, laughing loudly.
Lin Luo saw her looking over and smiled, then pulled out her physics book and pointed to a problem inside, asking, "Do you know how to solve this problem?"
Cheng Chu looked at her pen tip and shook his head, "No."
Lin Luo asked a final question, and she really didn't know the answer.
But Lin Luo didn't believe her. She exclaimed, "How could you not know? Last time, the teacher asked you to explain that question, and you knew it!"
Cheng Chu was annoyed by her loud voice, but she suppressed her dissatisfaction and calmly said, "Last time, it was Gu Miao who taught me."
"Ha!" Lin Luo glanced at Gu Miao with disdain.
She didn't want to talk to someone like this.
That blatant contempt completely angered Cheng Chu.
She frowned and said to Lin Luo coldly, "Even if I knew, I wouldn't want to teach you."
"Exactly, it's not Chuchu's obligation to teach you. If she wants to teach, she can, and if she doesn't want to, she doesn't have to. You act like someone owes you something," Luo Qianqian chimed in.
Lin Luo's face turned green with anger.
She glared fiercely at Cheng Chu and Luo Qianqian, then turned around abruptly and spat, "If you don't want to teach, then don't. You have the eyes of a dog."
Gu Miao had been sitting quietly on the side, but when he heard Lin Luo's words, he silently lifted her gaze. His eyes were like bottomless black pools, cold and icy as he looked at Lin Luo.
Cheng Chu thought that Gu Miao was unhappy because of Lin Luo's "tsk" sound, so she quickly said, "Don't mind her. Who knows who has the eyes of a dog."
The classroom was still noisy, and no one noticed what was happening here.
Gu Miao turned her head slightly and saw a girl with bright peach blossom eyes looking at him with concern. He shook his head, but his heart trembled slightly.
The classroom curtains were gently blown by the cold wind, and Gu Miao's heart was filled with complexity.
He wasn't upset by someone's mocking laughter. He had seen too much of this kind of thing and had long been accustomed to it.
But he couldn't stand it when someone cursed Cheng Chu, even if it was just a few words.
It ignited a fire in his heart that he couldn't control.
Translations during sleepless nights. I can sleep when I'm dead! ...Please let me sleep. Happy readers keep me awake, and lots of love and a huge thank you for supporting my hobby!
Give me feedback at moc.ebircssutol@ypeels.