Give Me Another Smile
Chapter 9 – Classmates
Ever since the awkward room-sharing situation, Tang Yu never saw Yin Zhao-an again.
Although their families lived relatively close to each other, Tang Yu wasn't an outdoor person.
The sudden cold she caught recently also deterred her mother from encouraging her to leave the house.
However, not meeting with Yin Zhao-an or going outside was the least of Tang Yu's concerns right now.
There were still two more years until her father would get killed while on duty.
Tang Yu's eyes would grow sore whenever she recalled this matter.
She didn't wish to experience the despair she felt back then for another time, so no matter what, she had to find a way to stop her father from going on the mission that was supposed to be a trap.
But before that, there was something very important she needed to face—school.
The classroom was extraordinarily noisy as children always had an inexhaustible supply of energy.
A little boy tugged on a girl's braid.
Then, the girl, pretending to be ferocious, chased the little boy all over the classroom, bringing chaos and dust wherever they passed.
At this time, a boy dressed in a small suit entered the classroom, instantly attracting the attention of many.
Zhao Yu tugged at his somewhat tight collar as he slowly approached Tang Yu's desk, his round face indicating that he must have had a satisfying holiday.
Tang Yu propped up her chin in a daze.
When a handful of brightly colored candies suddenly entered her vision, she couldn't help but look up at the hand's owner.
Zhao Yu grinned a wide grin that revealed his pearly teeth, his smile at total odds with his dapper attire.
“…” Tang Yu quietly accepted the candies and put them away in her desk drawer.
Zhao Yu rubbed his nose awkwardly when he received the indifferent response he had expected.
Then, he laughed, turned around, and walked away.
The head teacher was a woman in her forties wearing rimless glasses.
She had a pair of eyes as sharp as a hawk behind the lenses.
As soon as she walked in, the classroom instantly fell silent.
“Class is in session.
Get back to your seats and pay attention,” the head teacher said as she nudged her glasses and scanned the classroom.
After ensuring that there would be no more interruptions, she continued, “We have a new classmate joining our class today.
Let's welcome her with a round of applause.”
The children dutifully applauded.
Along with the warm applause, a little girl with a bob cut stepped into the classroom with a bright red school bag on her back.
The girl's hair had covered most of the baby fat on her face, so she looked quite delicate at first glance.
After seeing the girl enter, the teacher spread both hands and gestured for the class to quiet down.
Then, once the applause stopped, the teacher said to the girl, “Come and introduce yourself.”
I am Yin Zhao-yan.
Yin(尹) is the 'yin' in Jing Zhaoyin(京兆尹), Zhao(兆) is the 'zhao' in Jing Zhaoyin(京兆尹), and An(安) is the 'an' in Chang'an(长安).”
Yin Zhao-an's introduction was loud, clear, and fluent.
Unlike the average child her age, she did not stumble over her words, behave shyly, or squirm anxiously.
Tang Yu instantly lost her cool and began to fidget in her seat when she first saw Yin Zhao-an.
According to her memory, Yin Zhao-an should have joined the class next door.
So, why was she here?
However, Tang Yu grew speechless when she heard Yin Zhao-an's subsequent introduction.
Yin Zhao-an? How would a bunch of first graders know about Jing Zhaoyin? If Tang Yu were to describe Yin Zhao-an's introduction with modern language, she would probably say that Yin Zhao-an was…a showoff?
Suddenly, the teacher scanned the classroom and looked in Tang Yu's direction, frightening Tang Yu.
Then, to Tang Yu's absolute dismay, the teacher said to Yin Zhao-an, “You can have the fourth row's window seat.
Don't hesitate to come to me if you have any questions.”
“Thank you, Teacher.”
Tang Yu's expression gradually sank, a cold feeling spreading in her heart.
Was it…impossible to avoid Yin Zhao-an?
Yin Zhao-an stuffed her backpack into her desk drawer and admired her perfect seat in satisfaction.
If she were to look at the blackboard from her position, her line of sight would have to pass through the student seated in front of her.
Meanwhile, the student seated in front of her was…naturally Tang Yu.
Tang Yu spent the first period drowned in her own thoughts.
The more she thought, the more annoyed she became.
The unvarnished gaze staring at her back only made her feel even more uncomfortable.
When Zhao Yu finished taking notes, he subconsciously turned around and just so happened to catch Tang Yu's distracted look.
So, he mischievously snatched the pencil out of Tang Yu's hand, startling her.
“What are you doing?!”
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Before Tang Yu could even react, a loud smack came from the desk behind her.
Accompanying this smack was the ear-splitting sound of a wooden chair scraping against the concrete floor as Yin Zhao-an ran past Tang Yu and glared at the bewildered Zhao Yu.
Before Zhao Yu could react to what was happening, a few of the spectating children nearby decided to add oil to the fire, shouting, “Someone's fighting! Someone's fighting!”
Stunned and dumbfounded, Tang Yu watched as several children ran out of the classroom screaming at the top of their lungs.
Jing Zhaoyin: an official in ancient China.
Chang'an: This is the traditional name of Xi'an, the capital of the Shaanxi Province in China.
It can also be translated to mean “long-term peace.”
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