The outline of the new textbook was the same as her old one, but there were some specific formulas that were different. Wei Ruxia was asking about a particular question which she couldn’t complete because she hadn't learned the formula and couldn't apply it.
Luo Tang opened the textbook, and while turning the pages, he pressed his finger to a formula that was marked with an asterisk at the front of the textbook.
Taking the pen out of Wei Ruxia's hand, Luo Tang drew a line under the formula, and then recalculated the entire problem-solving process on her draft paper.
In this textbook, formulas with asterisks were generally niche use formulas, but it was such an unpopular little formula that Luo Tang could use proficiently. Wei Ruxia looked at his calculations with a hint of surprise in her heart.
On the draft paper, his handwriting was beautiful and neat. After finishing the calculation, Luo Tang held the pen tip above the paper and asked Wei Ruxia, "Get it?"
The question wasn’t difficult once the formula was applied. Wei Ruxia looked up at Luo Tang, smiled vaguely and said, "Got it."
Luo Tang didn't notice any deeper meaning to her smile. After confirming that Wei Ruxia understood the idea, he put the pen aside and got up to leave the classroom.
The people who were waiting at the door of the classroom immediately followed.
As soon as the boy disappeared, Wei Ruxia looked at Hu Yinyin and asked, "Is Luo Tang a good student?"
Hu Yinyin was still immersed in Luo Tang’s words of, ‘I’ll fight after.’ She didn’t expect that after everything that had just happened, Wei Ruxia would only care about that.
"Yeah, Luo Tang is smart. If you combined all the subjects, he would be around 15th in the year."
But because he was relatively cold, and a school bully, he would definitely not give people lessons, so Hu Yinyin had removed him from the list of ‘people who studied well’.
Luo Tang often fought and missing class was a daily routine for him. Even when he was in class, he usually just read comics. How did he get 15th in the test? But judging from his performance just then, his exam results didn’t seem to be fake.
His brain was just too smart.
"Wait. Why are you only asking about his studies?" Hu Yinyin said incredulously. When Wei Ruxia looked up at her, Hu Yinyin drilled at her side, raising her eyebrows playfully, as she asked, "What’s the relationship between you and Luo Tang!?"
The two of them usually had zero interaction in the classroom. This time Luo Tang put aside his fight to talk to Wei Ruxia. This was equivalent to throwing an atomic bomb into the bottom of the sea. It may only seem like a layer of ripples on the surface but a shell had definitely exploded underneath.
Some of the other students in the class also witnessed the scene, but they could only wait as Hu Yinyin was closer to the water and caught the moonlight first. While Hu Yinyin and Wei Ruxia were talking, they could only turn their heads and look over from time to time, their eyes full of curiosity.
Compared with Hu Yinyin's excitement, Wei Ruxia still had a blank expression. She knew that if she didn't say anything today, Hu Yinyin would imagine something fantastical.
"We’re neighbours, and his mother is very kind. Before my grandmother returned home, she asked Luo Tang to look out for me."
Wei Ruxia's words were half true.
In fact, if he was only listening to his mother’s request to look out for her, Wei Ruxia also felt that Luo Tang was too enthusiastic. But the reality was Luo Tang was helping her just to dissuade her from snitching to Aunt Yang, just like the last time in the Golden Palace Shopping Centre.
Luo Tang was very difficult to pin down though. So she didn’t want to say anything that might destroy his image and self-esteem. This was what Wei Ruxia thought to herself while she was accepting Luo Tang's help.
Mathematics was Wei Ruxia's weakness, so she bit the bullet and kept studying. When Luo Tang returned, classes had been over for a while.
Wei Ruxia's mind was in a daze, but hearing the opening of the back door, she looked up at him and asked, "Did you win?"
Although he went out to join a brawl, there were no traces of the fight on his face, and even his school uniform looked good as new, without any creases. He seemed to be independent of the fighting crowd, like his pure and gentle face would never be tainted by a trace of gun smoke.
Luo Tang put the comics on his desk into his schoolbag and looked up at Wei Ruxia.
Wei Ruxia was still in a daze from all the mathematics, and her eyes, which were originally clear, were also covered with a fine mist.
Luo Tang pursed his lips slightly and replied, "Yeah, we won."
The two took their schoolbags and walked out the classroom door one after another.
Because she had been waiting for Luo Tang to come back from the fight, when they got off the subway and walked home, the sun had already been swallowed by the sky. The flaming sunset dyed the clouds on the horizon and covered the earth with a layer of red.
As they got to the edge of the basketball court that was part of a nearby apartment block, the two ran into Yang Shuru who was walking A’Mang. A’Mang noticed Luo Tang first, and after barking at Yang Shuru twice, he ran towards Luo Tang.
A German Shepherd at sunset was still ferocious looking when he ran. Luo Tang bent his knee and squatted down as A’Mang whined, jumping on him with his tongue out and completely lacking the dignity of a working dog.
The boy and the German Shepherd, one looked refined but was actually very aggressive, while the other looked fierce and terrible but was actually clingy.
Sure enough, pets took after their owners, and they contrasted well.
"You came back late today." Yang Shuru followed A’Mang and walked over slowly. As she said this, she looked at Luo Tang, and there was something in her words.
Before Luo Tang could speak, Wei Ruxia, who was standing next to him, suddenly said, "Sorry Auntie Yang. I failed my maths test and it took a while for Luo Tang to explain the questions, so we came back a bit late."
Luo Tang looked up at Wei Ruxia, her light brown eyes were shining, and the corners of her lips smiled at him.
"Really?" Yang Shuru asked incredulously. She looked at Wei Ruxia with a soft look, and then turned to and exhorted Luo Tang, "That's good, you should help her more in the future."
He was rubbing his fingers on the top of A’Mang's head. A’Mang's hair was a bit coarse, far inferior to the fluffy feeling of a girl's hair. He withdrew his hand and responded indifferently, "I know."
With Yang Shuru's approval, it was easier for Wei Ruxia to ask Luo Tang for help. Every time she had a problem, she turned her head and Luo Tang would walk over as soon as he put down his comic.
And knowing that they were neighbours, their classmates wouldn’t think so ambiguously of Luo Tang's teaching Wei Ruxia.
At Ancheng No. 1 High School the last class on Friday was a class meeting. After the English class they had for the second period in the morning, Ke Wenzhen gave everyone a teaser for the class meeting. Today they would be changing seats.
In class, adjusting the seating plan was a big deal. Some in the class were happy and some were worried.
Listening to the boiling discussions in the classroom, Ke Wenzhen took the blackboard eraser and knocked on the table, "Okay, quiet down. If you have any requests for your repositioning, you can come to me between classes."
There was a lot of enthusiasm in the classroom, Wei Ruxia watched Ke Wenzhen leave the classroom, and continued to look at her math problems.
While she was doing exercises between classes, Lin He from Class 8 came to find Luo Tang. Last time they had a fight with Xu Lingzhou, Xu Lingzhou gave in, but the others from No. 4 High School didn't, so they arranged another meeting on Saturday.
Boys in high school were full-blooded. It only took a word and you could get involved in an after school gathering.
Thinking of the No. 4 High School students they beat up at the Internet cafe last time, Han Junsong snorted and said, “We didn’t even need to seek them out, they came to us. Last time, that Huang Wei guy from No. 4 High lost a game and found someone from our school to vent on. This is great, let’s settle the old and the new debts together."
Lin He didn't express his opinion after listening to Han Junsong's words. He just glanced at Luo Tang who was looking out the window.
"Luo’ge, what do you think?"
Luo Tang was looking out the window, and in his sight was a tall girl walking towards the office. He looked vague and asked Han Junsong, "Where is there an authentic northern restaurant in Ancheng?"
Han Junsong, "...Huh?"
After chatting with Lin He, Luo Tang and Han Junsong returned to the classroom. As soon as Han Junsong entered the door, he glanced at Hu Yinyin and asked, "Hey, tubby, where's long legs?"
"You’re tubby!" Hu Yinyin hit Han Junsong with her textbook, her face flushed with anger. After the beating, she said angrily, "She went to the teacher to change seats."
Luo Tang had just sat down and opened a comic when he heard Hu Yinyin's words, his eyelids lifted.
"Ah? Where does she want to move?" Han Junsong asked.
Hu Yinyin gave Han Junsong a pointed look and said, "She needs someone to help her study, like Li Yiting or Wang Anshi. What, did you think she wanted to share a desk with you?"
Wei Ruxia was tall, and if she wanted to share a desk with someone smart without blocking other students from looking at the blackboard, she could only share a desk with a boy.
After listening to her, Han Junsong glanced back at Luo Tang, who was looking down at his comic, expressionless.
Wei Ruxia was indeed going to discuss with Ke Wenzhen about her seating. Knowing that Wei Ruxia couldn’t keep up with the coursework, Ke Wenzhen was very amiable. Not only did she agree that she could be at the same desk as one of the higher ranked students, she also agreed to let her choose her which desk.
"Wow, the head teacher really agreed to let you choose your own deskmate?" Hu Yinyin asked in surprise, then gossiped, "Who will you choose?"
Wei Ruxia opened the textbook, turned to the page she was looking at before, and answered, "Someone who studies well."
Their voices weren’t too loud, but they just happened to be heard by the people in the back row. Luo Tang looked up at the boy wearing glasses by the classroom window.
The emotions in the dark eyes were unclear. He then closed his comic and took out a textbook.
After getting out of their math class, Wei Ruxia turned her head while holding the textbook. She had studied the foundational knowledge and was now onto learning new things, and she was in a state of frustration and confusion. Fortunately, Luo Tang would be able to help.
However, this time, when she turned her head, Luo Tang didn’t look up.
Still, she needed the help, so Wei Ruxia called Luo Tang, and Luo Tang looked up. She looked at the textbook and pointed to the question, and asked, "Why draw auxiliary lines here?"
Luo Tang looked at the geometric squares in her textbook, and had already figured out how to solve the problem in his head. After taking a look, he flipped over the comic book and said, "I can’t do it."
This was the first time that Luo Tang said he couldn't do something. Wei Ruxia was stunned for a moment, and then didn't care. After all, it was new knowledge, so she still had time to ask the teacher.
After the announcement of the seating adjustment in the morning, the rest of the day seemed to fly by. Before the class meeting, the students had already sat down and were discussing in hushed voices who would be moving seats.
The tradition at this school was to pick desks in order of their grades. They would only be taking their first monthly test after National Day, so they assumed that the grading would be based on their results when they first entered the class.
Ke Wenzhen brought the seating chart into the classroom, and the students suddenly became lively. She knocked on the table and said, "Be quiet, let’s start with changing your seats."
After speaking, after the class was quiet. Ke Wenzhen gave a brief overview and then put the seating chart on the podium and said, "We’ll start from the back. Wang Silai, you move to Han Junsong’s seat, Han Junsong, you move to Wei Ruxia’s seat, Wei Ruxia..."
Ke Wenzhen raised her head, glanced at Wei Ruxia, and after seeing her expression was unchanged, she continued, "Move to Wang Silai's place and sit with Luo Tang."
Luo Tang's eyes lit up and he raised his head to look in the direction of Wei Ruxia. The latter seemed to have already known about this arrangement, and after Wang Silai packed up his things, she moved her belongings to the seat next to Luo Tang.
She sat in the last row, raised her eyes to make sure that she could see everything clearly, and then glanced at Luo Tang.
Luo Tang met her gaze and pressed his finger on his comic book, looking calm. Wei Ruxia pursed her lips and said, "I think it’s better to study with you, and this way you won’t be as troubled, right?"
Luo Tang didn’t answer her.
Seeing his calm expression, Wei Ruxia realized that she should have discussed this with Luo Tang in advance. Wang Silai was friends with him, and they often cut class and fought together. It was too selfish of her to cut in.
"I took the initiative to ask the teacher. If you don't want to be at the same table with me, I can go back to the head teacher..."
"Which question were you stuck on before?" Luo Tang interrupted her.
"Huh?" Wei Ruxia looked at him and said, "I thought you couldn’t do it?"
Closing the comic book, Luo Tang looked up, his eyes under his eyelashes were black and shiny.
"I can do it now."
The author has something to say:
Tangtang: If we study well, we can do anything.
Emmmmm what will you do? Do...do that?
Erm, so I was chatting to my roommate while I was uploading last night and accidentally forgot to schedule it and just uploaded it immediately. Hidden benefit: I had time to translate this one too!