He Nuo had always been a minor character who Shi Yan would never have in his sights, so Shi Yan never paid a single sliver of attention to him; usually He Nuo didn’t have much contact with other students either, so who would know that he was actually so stubborn? So when He Nuo was unexpectedly kicked into kneeling on the floor and didn’t immediately jump back up to retaliate, Shi Yan mistakenly thought that He Nuo had yielded. Shi Yan then released his grip on He Nuo. However, He Nuo didn’t pick up the cigarette b.u.t.ts. He just stood back up, patted the dust away from the front of his knees and the footprint marks at the back, turned around to pick up his broom and dustpan and walked back to the school building.
The group of boys were dumbfounded as they stared at the retreating figure, and only reacted with raucous laughter when the figure had disappeared into the building. Zhou Xiaodong knocked on Shi Yan’s shoulder with a fist, “Your cla.s.s actually has someone who doesn’t give a d.a.m.n about you? Looks like your kick landed on a bed of cotton, he doesn’t care about you at all.”
Shi Yan rolled his eyes, “Who cares about him. If no one’s picking them up, then those who threw the cigarette b.u.t.ts pick them up themselves!”
Well, they definitely weren’t gonna pick them up themselves. They just called over another student who was on duty to sweep the cigarette b.u.t.ts away.
This was just a small incident, since it’s over then He Nuo just let it be, he wouldn’t take it to heart. But, someone else did. Shi Yan felt like his reputation had suffered; he had never been treated so lightly like this by anyone before. In fact, he didn’t just take him lightly, He Nuo basically outright mocked him! This gloomy rat who always stayed in a corner actually had the audacity to treat him like this! The more Shi Yan thought about it, the more angry he got. Every time he saw He Nuo he got irritated, and he always felt like he needed to be taught a lesson.
Shi Yan was one of the organisers for his cla.s.s’ New Year’s party. The cla.s.s was split into the 6 groups as usual, and Shi Yan had to arrange the programme list and snacks for the party with a few other people. The cla.s.s funds could only be used to buy some sweets, melon seeds and peanuts etc., how could it be enough to last the students for a whole 5 to 6 hours in the afternoon? So aside from these provisions, everyone in cla.s.s was also asked to bring along one canned food or some other dish, it would be even better if someone could provide fruits. In the past, He Nuo wouldn’t attend events like these and would stay home. But now that he was in senior high, his form teacher specially stressed that no one was allowed to take leave, everyone was expected to attend. He Nuo wasn’t really interested and just wanted to get it over and done with so he didn’t join in the heated discussions about the party with his cla.s.smates. Thus, he thought that the party would just be about watching the programmes that his cla.s.smates had prepared, so he showed up at the party empty-handed.
The tables had already been separated into 6 cl.u.s.ters — every group’s tables had a bunch of food. That was when He Nuo realised that everyone else had brought something along. Actually, even if he didn’t bring anything, no one would say anything about it or even pay attention to him. Those who brought food would just place it on their own group’s tables and leave, it’s not like there was someone going around taking stock of the food; you could take as much or as little as you want. Everyone was either excitedly introducing the stuff they had brought to others or going around tasting the food that other people had brought. No one would care about someone like He Nuo who didn’t take the initiative to approach people and ask what he had brought. But He Nuo felt like it would be a bit embarra.s.sing to take other people’s food when he didn’t bring any, so he only took a few melon seeds and peanuts.
The students’ parties typically had a lot of riddles, singing, dancing and games. Those who were engrossed in the activities were enjoying themselves, while students like He Nuo who stayed at a side became the spectators. The students were singing some popular songs that had spread around, but unfortunately He Nuo had never heard these songs before, so he couldn’t make any comments; but the riddles were rather interesting. He didn’t know if everyone was just trying to create an atmosphere of exaggeration, but the riddles he heard were simple to the point of being stupid, yet it still required a few guesses before the students got it right. He didn’t take part in the guessing but he listened to the riddles intently.
Shi Yan had just finished offering New Year greetings to the other cla.s.ses in the same year as the cla.s.s representative and returned to his group’s table. He was immediately surrounded a group of enthusiastic cla.s.smates, everyone wanted him to have a taste of their contributions and thanked him profusely for the oranges he brought. The fruit that most families in the north had was apples; those of lower statuses would have Guogang apples, while families with higher statuses would have golden or red delicious apples. It was only a few years later that apples like red fuji apples would appear. Oranges were rare and expensive. Shi Yan’s family didn’t have a lot of people — his sister was studying in an overseas university, so his family only had three people. But the amount of oranges that the unit had distributed (leader-level) and gifted was not little, so he had brought a few for the cla.s.s’ party.
Shi Yan proudly scanned the cla.s.s and saw that everyone had some leftover orange peels in front of them, un, except for one person. Shi Yan thought unhappily, “Great, this guy doesn’t even think my things are worth eating.” This really was a huge misunderstanding, He Nuo had also just received the news that the oranges were brought to cla.s.s by the group leader. Plus, it was a long-standing habit of his to refrain from randomly picking whatever was on the table — he had been taught to not take a single thing from others, and he also felt guilty for eating when he himself didn’t bring any food.
To Shi Yan, his principle was that if he wasn’t happy, then the person who made him unhappy shouldn’t be let off easily either. But even if he wanted to cause some trouble, he needed a match to light the fire with. It just so happened that a cla.s.smate told him that one of the dishes was really delicious, but it was a pity that he came late so everyone had polished it clean. So he asked, “He Nuo, which plate is yours?”
“……” He Nuo started to squirm about uncomfortably.
Shi Yan saw his discomfort, and quickly counted the number of plates on the table. Indeed, there was only 8 plates. He smiled brightly with malicious intentions, “Don’t tell me it had been polished off too?”
He Nuo saw that everyone was looking at him, so he admitted, “Sorry, I didn’t pay attention to the notice so I didn’t bring anything.”