While Bei Ze and Ji Xiaoyu were having a bonding session, Shi Sheng went off to go do something else.
Ji Xiaoyu only had her father ever since her mother died when she was young. However, this father of hers was always busy working and often neglected her. Ji Xiaoyu was a bit estranged from him because of her mother’s death, so their relationship wasn’t that strong.
Papa Ji liked to buy lottery tickets. He was carrying out his daily routine of purchasing one after he got off from work when he bumped into a girl at the entrance of the shop, and the ticket which he hadn’t been holding onto tightly dropped to the floor.
“Are you blind?! Can’t you see there’s someone walking here?!” Papa Ji scolded.
“I’m sorry! I’m sorry!” The girl hurriedly picked the ticket up and handed it over to him.
“Be more careful next time!” Papa Ji roughly tugged it back. “Youngsters these days are so clumsy.”
“I’m sorry. I won’t do it again.” The girl apologised continuously before running off.
After turning the corner, the girl headed for a coffee shop and sat down in front of a young woman, whose expression didn’t change at all.
This young woman was Shi Sheng.
“Here.” The girl pushed the lottery ticket to Shi Sheng. “The money?”
Shi Sheng took out a few banknotes from her bag and passed them to her. The girl left after receiving the money.
Shi Sheng smiled, a bit sinisterly, as she looked at the lottery ticket on the table. ‘Overnight fortunes ah!’
On the day of the celebration, everything had already been prepared. Only the person fetching the costumes hadn’t arrived yet.
“How come she still hasn’t returned? Hurry up and call her! And why isn’t Bei-shao here?”
“Bei Zhi, have you seen Bei-shao?” Lin Yin walked over with an anxious expression.
Shi Sheng looked up before shaking her head. “I don’t know. I didn’t see him last night.”
“President, President, we’re going up next!”
“President, Ji Xiaoyu and Bei-shao aren’t picking up their phones!”
‘Of course their phones aren’t being picked up! They’re busy cultivating feelings so their phones would be off!’
The group of people got more and more distressed as the time to go on stage drew closer and closer.
“They’re here, they’re here; they’ve returned!”
Ji Xiaoyu and Bei Ze were surrounded upon turning up backstage.
“Ji Xiaoyu, where are the costumes?”
“Bei-shao, hurry up and put on your makeup.”
People kept chattering but the two didn’t move at all.
Only now did the babble halt, for everyone noticed the two of them looked very dishevelled.
“I’m sorry…” Ji Xiaoyu suddenly spoke, breaking the silence. “I lost the clothes.”
“Ji Xiaoyu, this isn’t the time to be cracking jokes.” Someone spoke.
“I’m not joking.” Ji Xiaoyu found herself unable to meet the eyes of so many and subconsciously hid behind Bei Ze, who blocked her with his body. His actions proved that the costumes had really been lost.
Everyone looked at each other. Time hadn’t been the only thing they had put into this play, yet now all of their efforts would go to waste.
“I already told you not to go but you insisted! Ji Xiaoyu, you have a grudge with us, right?!” A girl couldn’t take it and broke down crying.
Lin Yin’s eyes were a bit red and she was feeling a bit stuffy inside. This was her last year. This play had been her final one. She had wanted it to be a good ending to her high school life. But now, everything was ruined.
“I’m sorry.” Ji Xiaoyu apologised in a small voice.
“What can being sorry do?! Now that our costumes are gone, all of our efforts are flushed down the drain!”
“I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.” Ji Xiaoyu continued apologising.
“Aren’t you guys going to change? You’re up next, you know.” Shi Sheng entered from outside and spoke in a melodious voice.
“Change into what? We don’t even have the costumes.”
“En?” Shi Sheng deliberately had a questioning look on her face.
Tears streamed down her face as the girl spoke, “Ji Xiaoyu lost the costumes. How are we going to go onstage without them?”
Shi Sheng looked at Ji Xiaoyu, who withdrew even further behind Bei Ze’s back. Her face was pale, as if she had received too much stimulation.
“I was the one who lost the clothes.” Bei Ze immediately spoke upon receiving Shi Sheng’s gaze.
“Bei Ze…” Ji Xiaoyu’s eyes reddened, clearly moved.
Shi Sheng gave a mocking laugh. “Don’t volunteer for stuff if you don’t have the ability.”
‘It was clearly not her task yet she insisted on doing it. What’s more, she didn’t even do it well. Yet in the male lead’s eyes, I bet he’d just find her adorable in a stupid kind of way and speak up for her…
We live in an age of female leads ah!’
“Bei Zhi!” Bei Ze yelled at her.
“What? Can yelling at me make costumes appear?!”
‘Fuck your mom! I didn’t even do anything! What are you yelling at me for?!’
Bei Ze glared angrily, his eyes seemed to be filled with frosty ice.
“Hey Drama Club, you guys are up next!” Someone called out from afar.
Lin Yin took a deep breath. “I’ll go tell the teacher we’re cancelling our programme. All of you…”
“Can’t we find another way?” Some people were unwilling to give up. After all, they had invested so much into this performance; were they going to give it up, just like that?
Lin Yin’s eyes were red as she shook her head at them. Even if they wanted to rent outfits, it was already too late.
In the end, the school celebration programme could only be called off. Though Ji Xiaoyu was the main culprit, with Bei Ze protecting her, no one in the Drama Club dared to cause trouble for her. Quite a few people had also quit the club.
After all, if they couldn’t afford to provoke her, they could still hide, couldn’t they?
Ji Xiaoyu was even more ostracised than before. Stuff like her bag disappearing and people giving her the wrong time schedule for events became common.
“Ji Xiaoyu, there’s someone looking for you at the gates.” The student who had come over to deliver the message wore an expression of contempt. “Don’t know where this upstart came from.”
Ji Xiaoyu didn’t really understand. She lowered her head as she passed by but that student suddenly stretched out a leg to trip her up, then laughed and walked off after seeing her fall onto the ground.
She glared angrily at the direction the student left. In the end she picked herself up and, with a dark expression, headed towards the school gates.
From far away, she saw someone standing by the school gates. Wearing a suit, a golden watch, and a gold chain as thick as a thumb around his neck. The man looked very strange, as if he were a worker who stole his boss’s suit.
“Xiaoyu,” the man waved at her. Ji Xiaoyu had still been a bit uncertain before but with his call, she knew without a doubt that this person was her father.
Ji Xiaoyu ran out and dragged him to the side. “Why are you here? And why are you dressed up like this?”
‘No wonder that person called him an upstart. He looks like some nouveau riche1 so to them I guess he’s like one?’
“I’ve got money now!” Papa Ji was very excited. “Look, your dad’s a rich person now! From now on, I won’t have to neglect you because of work! Xiaoyu, what do you want to buy? Dad will go and buy it!”
“Where did you get so much money?” Ji Xiaoyu’s first reaction was to frown.
‘Would I not know what kind of person my dad is? For the sake of his career he could even miss his wife’s death. He only found out 2 days after mom was gone.’
It was also from then that Ji Xiaoyu and her father’s relationship had soured. She had always felt that her father had been the cause of her mother’s death.
If you praise me more there might be a pleasant surprise, you know~
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- To those of you who do not speak French, or read a lot of English books, this is a borrowed term which is usually a derogatory way of addressing people who have made their fortune in their lifetime and not inherited it from their ancestors. This disdain usually comes from the newly rich not having as cultured taste as the ‘old money’.