January 22, 2022

Chapter 51: Youth

Lichen was not only handsome but also someone who moved quickly. By lunch break, he had already inquired about Yansheng’s name and class.

In the next two days, Qian heard him talk to other boys about Yansheng from Class 2.

Although the school just started a few days ago, Yansheng was already a celebrity. The boys regarded her as the prettiest in the class and the whole first-year level. However, they just enrolled in the school and they didn’t know if there were more beautiful senior sisters in the second and third-year levels, so they didn’t know if Yansheng from Class 2 could win the title of the school flower.

Qian couldn’t help but be jealous.

On the first day of school, she glanced around and saw Lichen. Lichen’s eyes also brightened when he saw her, so the two of them struck up a conversation with each other. Then, Yansheng walked past them without exchanging words, and Lichen’s eyes widened.

Qian saw the boys gathered together to talk about the beautiful Yansheng. She was not happy, so she said sarcastically, “She is a good student in the preparatory class. Those three classes, we can just all look at them with our nostrils.”

The so-called three classes were referred to as the top class, the first preparatory class, and the second preparatory class. The students who competed very well were all ‘good kids’, and all of them studied diligently and hard.

They were not in the same league as the young masters of Class 8.

There were only a few ordinary kids of this age who clung to others for money. Most young men and women looked down on those who used money to do things and spent money to enter the school.

When they saw the students in Class 8, they really looked down on them with disdain.

As Lichen heard the sourness in Qian’s words, he smiled and was a little smug.

Qian was good-looking. If Yansheng didn’t show up, Lichen planned to chase her. But now that he had seen Yansheng, he wanted to chase Yansheng instead.

One noon in the second week of school, Lichen tried to strike up a conversation with Yansheng for the first time. But Yansheng behaved very coldly, obviously not wanting to respond to him.

Yansheng was cool and beautiful. This coldness added the attribute of ‘arrogance’ to her, which was even more exciting for boys of Lichen’s age.

He felt that Yansheng was really an interesting girl.

Yansheng didn’t expect that Lichen would chase her again after she hadn’t been in the same class in this life.

In the previous life, Qian got closer to her as soon as she saw her, and the two quickly became best friends.

Yansheng couldn’t feel the affection and warmth at home, so she attached great importance to her friends in school. Qian put on a show of being a good best friend, but clearly told her that she liked Lichen.

However, Lichen liked Yansheng. She was liked by the most handsome boy in the class. The fifteen-year-old Yansheng certainly couldn’t help but be happy and proud, but because of Qian, she became very ‘righteous’ and refused to accept Lichen’s pursuit.

So for three years in high school, it had always been a trio or a small group with three people as its core.

Later, Lichen and Qian took her to skip school, smoke, and drink, and she had been out of control on this road ever since.

There were also many cautious thoughts of young men and women mixed in the middle.

Such as ‘I would chase you’, ‘I treated you as my best friend, so how could you not trust me’, ‘I am your friend, so why would you pursue me’, would quarrel today and ignore each other, then would make up tomorrow, and so on.

At that age, Yansheng played in this trio for three years of love and hate entanglement, and lived herself into a novel of youth pain, and was deeply immersed in it.

When she looked back at that time, especially after rebirth, she realized that she was really stupid.

Yansheng wanted to cover her face.

In this life, her soul was already an adult and it was impossible to relive that kind of youth. Moreover, compared to the hard work of the students in Class 2 every day and the love-and-hate relationship in Class 8, they seemed to be two worlds apart.

The same age, but different youth.

Yansheng chose to study hard in this life.

After graduating from high school in her previous life, Qian and Lichen’s family sent them abroad. Huan actually wanted to send Yansheng abroad too, which was a common operation for families like them.

However, Zhang Yansheng refused to go.

Although she didn’t go home much, she thought that if she went abroad, Yingying would be very happy, so she was not willing to go. She insisted on staying in China, in K City.

Huan couldn’t help it, so he spent money to get her to a pheasant university.

In fact, there was not much difference. Based on Yansheng’s grades at that time, the difference was nothing more than whether she went to a pheasant university in China or a pheasant university abroad.

It was all about getting by.

That kind of school was simply customized for people like her. There were rich second generations who were the same as her, as well as children from ordinary families, who didn’t have much money but were willing to bend over and flatter them. What everyone had in common was that they didn’t like to study.

In short, Yansheng was like a fish in the water in that school. She found her own group of belonging, met more and more people who were mixed in society, and went further and further on the road of fooling around.

In the end, she led herself to death.

Yansheng no longer wanted to be in the same situation as in her previous life.

But her coldness toward Lichen aroused his interest in her even more. Moreover, Yansheng and Qian were not the best of friends anymore in this life, and there was no one in the way, so Lichen openly pursued her.

Yansheng refused him several times but was constantly blocked by Lichen at school.

She was a little surprised that his attitude towards her was different from that of her previous life. Lichen was always by her side in the previous life but was far less forceful to her. She wondered why he constantly entangled with her in this life.

Less than a month, after the start of school, Yansheng was annoyed by Lichen’s pursuit.

She was not polite to him either, so she knocked on the dean’s office and complained about him.

No.1 High School was the top high school in K City. Although it accepted some students in relationships due to various reasons, this situation was not under the dean’s control. The dean was in charge of learning and discipline only.

The dean was not negligent, so the next day, he gave Lichen a punishment and invited his parents.

Lichen didn’t care about punishment or anything, but it was annoying to invite his parents. As a result, he was scolded by his father in the dean’s office.

When they came out of the dean’s office, his father still had a foul face.

Even if it cost money to enter at No.1 High School, there was a limited number of spots available. It took his father a lot of effort to get him in, and this kid caused him trouble in only one month.

Furthermore, he was reported by the girl he was chasing. Lichen’s father felt particularly embarrassed.

When they got out of the administration building, Mr. Xu scolded him, “Do you have an ugly face or are you short of money? I’ve never known anyone who got punished for chasing a girl, except you!”

Lichen laughed mischievously.

Mr. Xu was so angry that he lost his temper. He waved his hand and said, “Stay away from that girl from now on, don’t mess with her.” The girl has such a big temper. Since she didn’t accept my son’s pursuit, she reported him to be punished, he thought.

Lichen was calm and relaxed, but didn’t answer his father.

He just learned that Yansheng’s temper was stronger than he thought. But even with the punishment, his interest in her not only did not weaken, but as a result, it even became stronger.

After school the next day, he went outside the school to block her again.

Yansheng was walking towards the subway with her school bag on her back, but he caught up with her without any precaution and stopped her again. “Zhang Yansheng!”

Yansheng frowned. She stopped and asked, “One punishment is not enough for you, is it?” He actually came to block me again?

Lichen replied with a smile, “Enough, it’s enough. You’re really good! I didn’t do anything bad to you, right? Why did you have to make a report and get me punished?”

Speaking of which, Lichen was still much better than Shuocheng, who grew up later. Although stalking was a bit annoying, at least it was not that nasty and he didn’t do such disgusting things. Yansheng was just bothered by him always pestering her, and she knew very well that Lichen didn’t care about getting punished or not.

Now that he had just enrolled as a first year in high school, he still went to school every day decently. But later on, his parents’ divorce battle would be in full swing and no one would care about him anymore, so he would skip school, smoke, drink, pick up girls, and party all night long.

Since Qian liked him, she just followed whatever he did, and Yansheng was full of hostility and rebellion at home. They were a trio again, and naturally, they played truant and missed classes together.

“You reap what you sow.” Yansheng said coldly, “You won’t be punished if you don’t come to harass me.”

“It’s not really harassment, right?” Xu Lichen responded with a smile, “I’m not that low. Didn’t I just block you a few times after school?”

Yansheng walked forward. “It has reached the bottom line of my patience several times.”

Lichen took a step and stopped her again.

Yansheng raised an eyebrow.

Lichen felt that Yansheng was different from the girls he had known before.

Among the girls he knew in the past, there were also those ‘high’, ‘cold’, and ‘arrogant’ types. However, under that ‘proud and cold’ attitude, there was still that childishness that they couldn’t get rid of.

But Yansheng didn’t have this kind of youthful and immature aura. She was really cold, from skin to bone, from eyes to soul, giving him a very cold feeling.

To him, it was very stimulating.

Lichen was much more patient with Yansheng than with others.

“Stop taking the subway. It’s so uncomfortable to squeeze in the subway at this time. Where does your family live? I will take you back”, he said. He didn’t even notice that his tone of voice to her was much softer than before. He raised his chin and added, “I have a driver to pick me up and my car is over there.”

Yansheng glanced in the direction pointed by his chin, and sure enough, she saw his car. She was very familiar with that car and the driver.

In her previous life, she, Heling, and Shuocheng were like strangers. They had different school hours and could be picked up separately, but they went to school at the same time in the morning. Yansheng would rather hail a cab by herself.

After meeting Lichen, he came to pick her up from the school.

When Qian found out about it, she was not happy and insisted that Lichen pick her up as well but he refused. Yansheng said that she would not let him pick her up again and Lichen perfunctorily agreed in front of Qian, but still went to pick up Yansheng from time to time.

The two of them tacitly did not let Qian know about it.

Qian always had some suspicions and often took an indirect approach to strike her.

On one hand, Yansheng refused to accept Lichen’s pursuit in consideration of her best friend; and on the other hand, she secretly felt stimulated because she had some little secrets with Lichen that Qian didn’t know.

When she turned her head, she saw Lichen’s car and recalled these bloody and foolish high school days when the young men and women had their first loves, filled with temptations and ridiculous tricks.

In the end, no one was able to be with anyone.

Without Yansheng, Lichen ignored Qian. Without Lichen, the friendship between Qian and Yansheng came to an abrupt end. Without Lichen and Qian, Yansheng became more and more ‘social’, and there was never a shortage of those so-called ‘friends’ around her.

Yansheng sighed like an old man in a daze, full of sadness. As she came back to her senses, she saw Lichen staring at her with bright eyes, as if he wanted to see something from her face, and there was hope in those eyes.

She suddenly understood why his attitude towards her in this life was stronger than in her previous life.