Chapter 26 — Reality vs Common Sense
On the other side of the city, the lights inside a certain office building are still fully lit. There is a business meeting in process: the Xiao family and Luo family are competing tooth and nail for a platform collaboration, both sides giving it their all, to no result.
The two families are in similar fields, both managing companies in the entertainment industry; even their companies are in the same city. Since the first day of entering the industry, the two families have been like oil and water, competing in rivalry for a good twenty years. Both have met success and good reputations now, yet their relationship is just as bad as it was in the beginning.
Luo Zhiyu’s dad, Mr. Luo says: “Wait and see who gets the last laugh.”
Mr. Xiao: “Sure, let’s see how it goes.”
“Is Zhiyu coming home next week?” In the car, Luo Yi asks Luo Zhiyu’s older sister, “It’s already been a month since he has started school, huh? Time flies.”
“I think so.” Luo Sixue is removing her makeup in front of a mirror, “They have their monthly exam this weekend and he comes home next weekend.”
“Oh right, is xiao-Yu in the same school as Xiao Yan?” Luo Yi remembers, “That Xiao kid.”
“Yeah. They’ve fought quite a bit, they start sniping at each other the second they see each other.” Luo Sixue says, “They’ve been fighting since they were kids. They aren’t even in the same class, different years too, and even different schools before. I don’t even know how they always end up fighting.”
“Xiao-Yu said a few days ago that their pheromone compatibility is basically zero, so no wonder.”
“Technically, we can have our rivalries professionally, but they should stay out of it. But they seem to like to be at each other’s throats, so let them be.” Papa Luo is not worried, “It’s been quite a few years anyway, and our xiao-Yu has not been asked to bring his parents in because of Xiao Yan either.”
“You’re not worried that my little brother will lose out?” Luo Sixue raises an eyebrow, “How come I vaguely remember that their grudge started with Luo Zhiyu.”
“Yeah, yeah. Think of your little brother’s personality, spoiled rotten by you and your big brother. Him making others lose out is more like it.”
At the doorway to the Second Year, Class 3 classroom, Luo Zhiyu takes another step towards the window and into the view of more people, working hard to expand his presence in the hallway.
“Hey, come out and play.” He knocks on the glass window near Xiao Yan again, attempting to let Xiao Yan experience how he felt when he saw others playing outside while he was stuck in class.
Just when Xiao Yan starts to circle “B” on the exam paper, the pen halts and rests on the paper.
Xiao Yan’s deskmate, and the ones who sit on the desks in front of and behind him, are currently communicating through sending looks + brain waves.
Fan Yue: “It’s getting late?”
Tang Yuan: “Unmarked omega?”
Zhang Shu: “Invites you to hang out?”
Lu Minggui, who has just entered the chat: “Ah, I see how it is now, let me see how he reacts.”
Right after that, they watch as Xiao Yan naturally puts down his pen, covering up his exam paper with his pencil case, and then stands up and leaves out the classroom’s back door.
The four who are left behind: “…..”
A wave of noise and chatter falls over the Class 3 classroom, sounding like muffled white noise. Zhang Shu whistles at where Xiao Yan disappears, the group of them looking at each other again with meaningful grins.
The one responsible for the classroom order has snuck out, which makes the entire Class 3 classroom wild out — some are whispering to each other, some are comparing answers, others are doing all kinds of things.
Student 1: “Omega version, what did you get for Question 5?”
Student 2: “A, duh, did you even listen in class? Here, let’s compare, what about the second question?”
Student 3: “? What’s going on? What are you guys laughing at, is there a mistake on the alpha version? It’s that funny?”
Student 4: “Hahahahaha Mr. Xu will have to go crying in the bathroom.”
“The test is the test, but reality is reality.” Fan Yue helps Xiao Yan bring order to the class again, “Get going, everyone, focus on the answers, they’re taking the exam away at the end of this block.”
In the hallway, Xiao Yan, who has followed Luo Zhiyu out and is leaning against the wall, seems to have something to say.
“Huh, you really came out.” Luo Zhiyu’s plan was to play around and then run away. Halfway in his retreat, he discovers that Xiao Yan followed him out and even grabbed his wrist with one hand. This is a surprise to him, “I’m honoured, I guess?”
“What did you just call me?” Xiao Yan blocks his way.
Luo Zhiyu blanks for a second first, then remembers what he was just doing in order to increase his sense of presence. His gaze flashes into something more cunning and mischievous: “What, are you moved, Yan-ge?”
“Luo Zhiyu.” Xiao Yan takes a few steps forward, blocking the other in the corner of the stairs. He lowers his head and glances at the new nameplate on Luo Zhiyu’s uniform. He taps at Luo Zhiyu’s name with the tip of his finger, “You could not have picked a better time. You’re being immoral, do you know that?”
“It’s your fault that you were eating ice cream outside my class this morning. And you asked if I wanted to go play.” Luo Zhiyu’s peculiar logic makes another appearance, “I just imitated what you did, so are you saying that you are also immoral?”
“……” Xiao Yan curls his finger, threatening him, “You better have something to tell me, or else……”
Xiao Yan’s uniform is zipped respectfully, the scent of oranges hidden away without a trace. Even so, because his pheromones are familiar to Luo Zhiyu, when the alpha leans too close to him, Luo Zhiyu instinctually feels a little pressured.
“Speaking of, I actually do have something. This is a good time.” Luo Zhiyu brings out a document from his pocket, smoothing out the dozen or so folds in the paper and handing it to Xiao Yan: “Look, the fall sports day.”
“You want to participate?” Xiao Yan asks him.
“Hell no, there are three free days because of sports day, why would I not go home?” Luo Zhiyu says, “Our school is in the city district, all the district’s high school sports meets are going to be at our school. So we need to collaborate with the people from the media committee and make a poster.”
“Okay, Fan Yue told me. After this, the arts committee shouldn’t have much more to do.” Xiao Yan takes the document, “You have a monthly exam this weekend?”
“Yeah.” Luo Zhiyu nods, “And I’m going home next weekend, I don’t have time for this, man. I’m a busy person.”
“Or, what if you don’t go home?”
Luo Zhiyu: “?”
When Xiao Yan returns to the classroom, it is very quiet — most people are slumped over the exam question, even Fan Yue and company seem like they are struck with writing inspiration, as if nothing happened just now, and they did not see anything.
Xiao Yan circles around Fan Yue to return to his desk, burying his nose into the exam paper.
His phone vibrates. Luo Zhiyu has sent him more messages after going back downstairs.
[Zhiliao]: I won’t go home next weekend.
[Xiao-dows Yan-der]: Decided already?
[Zhiliao]: There’s nothing to do back home anyway, I just had to let my dad and sister know.
[Zhiliao]: Since your family is competing with mine over a project again, I didn’t mention that I am staying on campus with you.
[Zhiliao]: I said that I have something to do with an alpha who wishes to remain anonymous, so I won’t be going home this week.
[Xiao-dows Yan-der]: Fairy scrunching eyebrows.jpg
[Zhiliao]: I hope we will have a good weekend.
[Zhiliao]: Do you want to go hang out off campus after we’re done?
[Zhiliao]: I haven’t been around this area since coming to this city.
[Zhiliao]: So? Let’s go play? Gege. Evil smile.jpg
“Focus, who are you talking to?” Fan Yue glances at Xiao Yan’s screen through his peripheral vision.
Xiao Yan: “Focus, focus.”
In the evening on the next day, Mr. Xu walks angrily into the classroom with a stack of exam papers.
“It’s as if I didn’t teach you anything.” Mr. Xu slams the exam papers onto the podium, “All the alpha students in this class, go stand in timeout in the corner at the front. Xiao Yan, you sit down, you’re fine.”
The few alpha students in the classroom stand and walk towards the corner next to the blackboard, standing up straight.
“The first question is general knowledge. Do you know what general knowledge is?” Mr. Xu takes a sip of tea to tamp down his anger, “General knowledge means, even if I don’t spell it out for you, you should still know how to answer it.”
“These are easy points! What is wrong with all of you, every single alpha student in this class, other than Xiao Yan, all chose A.” Mr. Xu cannot get a hold on his fury anymore, “In the entire second year cohort, only your class has this high of an error rate. This class is the worst class I have ever had to teach.”
Xiao Yan: “……”
Xiao Yan: “???”
“Look at the question, take out your pen!” Mr. Xu says, “Follow along and mark out the keywords. ‘It’s getting late’, what does this mean? This means it’s not a good time. ‘Unmarked omega’, ‘only invited you’, what do you choose? Look at your exam papers, what are you looking at?”
“Don’t tell me you don’t actually know the right answer. Put away whatever you’re thinking of, is Xiao Yan the only respectable alpha in this entire class?”
The dozen or so alpha students give Xiao Yan a resentful gaze.
“‘Happily hang out with him?'” Mr. Xu slaps the table, “Have you ever seen anyone do that? Any student that I have taught, I don’t think any of them would do that.”
The dozen or so alphas in timeout continue to send resentful looks towards Xiao Yan.
Respectful, fellow student Xiao: “…….”
A minute later, Xiao Yan stands without a word and joins the timeout.
Mr. Xu: “?”
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