Chapter 2: Rumours
Original Translations: Crafted with Care, No Unauthorized Reposting Allowed.
Both Qiao Lan and Tan Mo are supporting characters and not much is written about them in the book.
It is only because Qiao Lan shares her name and because she likes Tan Mo's character so much that Qiao Lan watches the plot of these two people more closely than the protagonist. Now that the jokes of the students around her are crowding into her ears, and everyone is calling Tan Mo crazy, stupid and insane, Qiao Lan finds it unbearably harsh.
After finishing the last letter of the essay, the bell finally rang and Chen Yaoyang, Qin Yang and the rest of the boys returned to their seats as the slightly Mediterranean teacher entered the classroom with the bell ringing and went straight to the first group of students in the first row with an extraordinarily thick voice.
"Take out all the papers", rolled the textbooks in your hands into a tube and started checking them one by one.
"How many times have I said it! Reading comprehension draw the part of the answer in the original text, say it every day every day for nothing... Who do you give to when you write such a few lines in your essay? Is learning for me?"
Mr. Liu scolded people as he examined them. Qin Yang slowly picked up the newspaper on the table and scanned it, only to have his face turn green.
The paper was clean and there wasn't even a single question written on it.
Qiao Lan didn't even make it for him!
Qin Yang was so angry that she turned her head and glared at Qiao Lan.
Qiao Lan did not see Qin Yang's angry face, but Qiao Lan's tablemate saw her and nudged her arm to remind her. When Qiao Lan looked up, she saw Qin Yang's cannibalistic gaze and immediately gave Qin Yang a look like you were an idiot, and then never looked at her again.
Qin Yang was shocked, fuck him, was Qiao Lan mocking him?
If it weren't for the teacher, Qin Yang would have rushed over to Qiao Lan and taken him out.
Qin Yang's tablemate was also surprised. Qiao Lan usually tries to please this group of people in the class, but today was a bit strange, but he didn't lose his wits like Qin Yang, and urged Qin Yang, "Don't worry about that and copy it, Mr. Liu is coming over."
Qin Yang now realised the importance of the subject and gave Qiao Lan a sharp look before she grabbed her pen and frantically copied the answers.
As he copied, he couldn't help but curse Qiao Lan, all because of Qiao Lan! When class is over, he will have to...
As he was thinking this, the newspaper in front of him was taken away by Mr. Liu.
Mr. Liu had only glanced at the other students before, but he had never expected Qin Yang to be checked in such detail.
Mr. Liu flipped the newspaper from side to side and after a few seconds of silence, exploded.
"What's wrong with putting two ticks on one option in the perfect filler, copying a serial? The reading comprehension answer is not written to the back of the question to write on the option, young eyes lame? I'm not sure I saw that, huh? I don't think I can see it because I copied the reading once in the essay, do you think I'm stupid or blind? You're not worth much more than a few pounds of oil from standing in the playground. When you've spent your parents' money, you can find a crooked tree and hang yourself.
Qiao Lan almost couldn't hold back her laughter.
No wonder the students were scared to death when they mentioned this teacher, this speed of speech, like a machine gun, being scolded like this was a disgrace to the family.
After scolding Qin Yang, Mr. Liu did not reprimand anyone, and when he came to Tan Mo, he just looked at Tan Mo for a moment and then skipped him.
No one thinks of Tan Mo as a normal person.
Tan Mo did not react to this either, hidden alone in the shadows beneath the wall, his slightly long hair covering his eyes, Qiao Lan could only see his chiseled chin, excessively thin and pale.
Qiao Lan withdrew her eyes, ignoring the murderous gaze of Qin Yang standing behind her, and listened attentively to Mr. Liu's lecture.
Although Mr. Liu was grumpy, the class was really good and the English class was over in no time.
After class, Qiao Lan looked at her timetable, put away her English textbook and looked for her maths book in the corner of her desk. Qiao Lan turned her head and saw Qin Yang with a fierce look on her face.
Qiao Lan pulled the maths book out, "What for?"
Fuck, why even ask him? Qin Yang's eyebrows went up.
He was scolded and punished, and now he has the face to ask him what he is doing?
"Didn't I tell you to write the paper?"
When Chen Yaoyang Song Yao and the others sitting in front of them heard this, they all looked over with a little surprise, Qin Yang was stunned, but he felt even more humiliated by the anger, "Say that again?
"Are you deaf? Get out of the way", Qiao Lan stood up as she prepared to put some books in the book box at the back of the classroom.
Qin Yang, who had just stood up, grabbed the book from Qiao Lan's hand and threw it, hitting it hard against the wall at the back of the classroom.
A book flew straight over Tan Mo's side, hitting Tan Mo's leg and falling to the ground again.
There was a sudden silence in the class when Qiao Lan suddenly remembered the description of Tan Mo's illness in the original novel.
Asperger syndrome is particularly sensitive to touch and may even overreact, with the sensation of a foreign object on the skin causing distress.
Qiao Lan's heart tightened as he pushed Qin Yang away and headed towards Tan Mo. Qin Yang cursed behind him, "What the fuck, do you really think you're someone if Song Yao takes you with him?
Qiao Lan, not listening, quickly walked over to Tan Mo, picked up the books from under Tan Mo's feet, looked up at the young man in front of him and asked him carefully.
"Are you all right."
As if he hadn't seen or heard, the teenager hadn't reacted in the slightest yet; he sat at the table like a statue, ash and blood stains on his school uniform, pale thin fingers holding a pen and writing something, a book on the table, his form motionless.
Qiao Lan stood up and crouched down a little, level with Tan Mo, "I'm sorry."
The pen in Tan Mo's hand finally stops for a moment, and the slightest of glances up, and for a moment, Qiao Lan meets Tan Mo's eyes, which are covered by his slightly longer hair.
But that was all, and he bowed his head again, still saying nothing.
Without bothering him again, Qiao Lan stood up and swept a quick glance over to Tan Mo's desk.
Not a textbook, it is densely packed with words, interspersed with symbols and formulas that are not part of high school knowledge.
The formula Qiao Lan knows is the indefinite integral in calculus, the Newton-Leibniz formula.
Qiao Lan learned just before she wore the book here.
Qin Yang wanted to teach Qiao Lan a lesson, but he never expected Qiao Lan, who was used to pleasing him, to take any kind of medicine today.
Qin Yang, unable to save face, cursed in the classroom for nearly ten minutes and finally said, "Don't you fucking regret it, we won't take you with us again!
Qiao Lan didn't take such childish threats seriously, she had already seen such threats in primary school. What's more, Qiao Lan doesn't want to have anything to do with these people.
In particular, Chen Yaoyang.
When I think of Chen Yaoyang's undisguised dislike for her today, Qiao Lan is confused as to what the Qiao Lan in the book likes about him.
Reaching into his school bag, he felt out a couple of Alpine lollipops and was left a little speechless.
It turned out that Qiao Lan had actually bought the sugar.
Qiao Lan is even a little confused by this Qiao Lan's brain.
If you put all this thought into your studies, you wouldn't be so bad at every exam. Your family is poor and not very good-looking, and you don't study well, so no wonder you are disliked.
If you want to be liked and accepted, you always have to have something to shine.
Qin Yang unilaterally feels that Qiao Lan is deliberately disrespecting him, and calls on a group of his best friends and girls who are close to him to unwittingly isolate Qiao Lan.
She is satisfied to listen to people talking badly about Qiao Lan, saying that she is not even a tenth as good-looking as Song Yao, and she has the nerve to like Chen Yaoyang, without looking at how much Chen Yaoyang is bothering her, which is why Song Yao is helping her...
Qin Yang is a little excited, he can't wait to see Qiao Lan alienated by his former best friends and then having to come to him for an apology.
As a result, when I turned my head, I saw Qiao Lan with a lollipop in his mouth.
Qin Yang's newly relieved mood was suddenly gone again.
Qiao Lan didn't have time to talk to Qin Yang, so she chewed the lollipop in her mouth and went to the washroom, returning just in time to see the homeroom teacher enter the classroom.
What is this going to do?
Qiao Lan watched Tan Mo's back for a short while before entering the classroom again, where he heard a group of students talking about Tan Mo.
"Why did Old Mu take him there?"
"Who knows", someone said, "I really convinced Old Mu, what a fucking temper, I wouldn't bother with him if I were Old Mu."
"Old Mu is the reincarnation of the holy father who is so full of love that he still comes up to him every time he gets dumped on..."
"Isn't it just a flood of love, disability plus mental illness, can't be more caring."
The students laughed, and one boy said, "He's really psychotic, sometimes he looks quite normal."
"Nervous people aren't always nervous," interjected a small girl, "I accidentally touched his arm when I was cleaning last time, I didn't mean to, but I ended up being pushed straight out and almost fell over, I'm really sick."
The pen in Qiao Lan's hand is tapped.
That's because he has Asperger syndrome, a condition in which the skin is so sensitive that what a normal person would call a light touch would be a shock to them in a way that no one would understand.
"Didn't I sit at the same table with him for a few days before and talk to him a few times, it scared the hell out of me."
"What's wrong with what?" The students were excited and good-humored.
"You talk to him and he stares straight at you without moving his eyes, it's just creepy, and also, sometimes his hand shakes when he holds a pen..."
"Wouldn't that be epilepsy?"
"Crikey he's still holding a pen, writing, can he?"
He would, of course he would, Qiao Lan thought of the calculus book he had seen on Tan Mo's desk today.
Although Asperger syndrome can cause autism and loss of basic social functions, these people do have IQs and memories that are far superior to those of others, and Tan Mo in particular.
He looked straight at a person, not because he wanted to do anything, but because he could not read the emotions of the next person, he just wanted to understand what the other person meant.
As for the trembling fingers... that's post-traumatic stress disorder left over from the car accident, a trauma that an autistic child with Asperger syndrome since childhood will never heal from after witnessing his mother's death in a car accident and after having his legs paralysed.
He was pitiful enough, but no one ever took pity on him. They called him crazy, stupid and insane, irritating the teenager, who was already on the verge of running away, over and over again with the most vicious banter of his age.
Another girl beside me was spouting off about what she had supposedly seen, saying that she had occasionally seen Tan Mo with a pen, scribbling like a three-year-old, and that she had once seen Tan Mo drooling in a silly manner.
"Crikey and drooling!"
"Fuck what a fucking idiot."
"What do you think his parents sent him here for?"
In the classroom, the students said and laughed, fools, lunatics, and so on and so forth, over and over again, into Qiao Lan's ears.
"Have you said enough?"
The girl froze for a moment and screamed out, " Qiao Lan, you're sick!"
"You're not sick if you make rumours?"
The girl's face turned white as she cursed and changed the subject, "Thanks to Qin Yang, I spoke up for you today..."
The students looked at the girl and then at Qiao Lan, their faces wondering what they were thinking, and gradually dispersed.
When Tan Mo finally returns, his wounded hand wrapped in gauze, Qiao Lan glances over and turns his head, catching a glimpse of his tablemate pretending not to notice that he has moved his table further away.
In the afternoon, Qiao Lan felt clearly isolated, and the girls who had been talking to her before were now not talking to her at all.
Qiao Lan's heart was in the right place, she couldn't even name these people so she didn't care about them.
Qiao Lan was just about to leave, having packed her bag with the day's homework, when she turned her head and saw Tan Mo again.
He was still sitting in the last row, head down, writing something, and students passing by stretched their necks to take a look, most likely thinking he was scribbling like a three-year-old.
Qiao Lan sat back down again until only a few people were left in the classroom and the building was clear of noisy shouting, then Tan Mo moved.
He pushed the wheelchair and turned it in silence, out of the classroom, out of the building and finally stopped at the disabled access.
The cut on his hand still hurts, as does the pain of his finger getting stuck in the wheel, and with such gentle disabled access in front of him, Tan Mo clenches his fingers in silence, pausing for almost ten seconds before finally placing his hand back on the wheelchair wheel.
The wheelchair had just moved when someone grabbed it by the backrest and slowly pushed it down the disabled access.
Tan Mo's head turned abruptly, his voice frightened and angry.
The man behind him did not let go, pushing the wheelchair to a gentle place before releasing his hand and then turning to leave without saying a word.
Tan Mo's hands were clasped dead on his wheelchair, his already pale complexion becoming even whiter and whiter as he sat silently in his wheelchair, staring intently at the man's back.
He remembers this man.
Not long ago, she stood in front of him and asked if he was all right.
And one more word, sorry.