The student reunion awakened Tang Hao’s memories of when he was still in junior high school.
In reality, if he thought about it now, there was nothing much worth remembering. He acted according to the convention, and apart from learning and studying, he was studying and learning. He did nothing special back then.
At that time, other than his slightly above average grades, there was nothing else special about him. He was also looked down upon by many students because he was just a poor boy from a mountain village.
A few even mocked him for the way he dressed.
As for the ladies, none of them even spared him a second glance.
Hence, Tang Hao disliked these student reunions. If it were not because of a couple of good friends he wanted to meet, he would not have agreed to come.
On the evening of the next day, he went to the East Shining Restaurant located in the city center.
The East Shining Restaurant was much lower in terms of standard when compared to Beyond Heaven Restaurant. However, it was suitable for normal civilians. Holding a class reunion in this place would cost around two hundred Yuan per head, which was considered inexpensive.
He dressed himself up like usual; he had on a white shirt on and a pair of jeans. It was a simple attire.
When he arrived at the restaurant, he saw two figures standing at the entrance. It was a boy and a girl, and they looked like they were around seventeen or eighteen years of age.
Upon closer inspection, Tang Hao instantly recognized them. The boy’s name was Liu Xiaolong, and he was their class monitor. As for the girl, her name was Wu Danli, and she was a former member of the student committee.
He had not seen them in three years, and the two of them had changed their appearance drastically, especially Wu Danli, who used to look mediocre in his opinion. Now, she was a whole different person and was much more beautiful than before.
When they saw Tang Hao walking toward them, the two exchanged glances whilst looking startled.
After looking up and down for a while, Wu Danli exclaimed suddenly, “Are you Tang Hao?”
Tang Hao smiled and gave them a wave.
Wu Danli’s eyes opened wide in bewilderment as she looked at Tang Hao incredulously. After all, the person in front of her was so different from the Tang Hao she remembered.
There were no differences in the way he dressed, but it was clear that his appearance and temperament had totally changed.
“You really are Tang Hao! I couldn’t recognize you!” Wu Danli walked up to him and then circled Tang Hao with an astonished look.
“Tang Hao, you actually came!” Liu Xiaolong walked up and greeted him warmly.
“Right, how’d you do on your examination? Based on your previous grades, it should be good!” Liu Xiaolong continued.
Tang Hao shook his head, “I didn’t take it; I stopped going to school long ago.”
In a split second, Liu Xiaolong and Wu Danli were both lost for words. A spell of awkward silence followed it.
They did not inquire further as they knew about Tang Hao’s family situation. Hence, they figured that Tang Hao had stopped going to school due to financial issues.
“That’s too bad!” Liu Xiaolong blurted out.
Then, he patted Tang Hao’s shoulder and said, “C’mon, let’s go in! They’re in room 409. About half of them have arrived.”
Tang Hao took out two hundred Yuan and gave it to him before he headed upstairs.
When he arrived at room 409, he saw a large room where many people had already gathered. There were about twenty to thirty people, and some of them were seated. A few of them were in groups of twos and threes.
At first glance, he spotted many familiar faces in the room.
Tang Hao’s arrival attracted quite a lot of attention, and everyone turned to look at him. However, after recognizing him, the warm reaction quickly turned cold.
Tang Hao was just a poor boy from a mountain village; he was barely visible when he was in the classroom before, so not many people were interested in interacting with him.
“Yo! Isn’t that Tang Hao!”
At that moment, a loud and clear voice could be heard from the side.
When he turned his head, he saw a slightly plump young boy wearing gold-rimmed glasses walking over. Although he had a smile on his face, he was clearly smiling sarcastically.
The boy’s name was Luo Wei, and he was someone Tang Hao disliked. He was notoriously hypocritical and loved to brag. He was also known as a poser.
Luo Wei’s family’s financial situation was good and he could be considered wealthy. Thus, he was born with a sense of superiority toward a poor lad like Tang Hao. When they were in school, he directed his fair share of jokes at Tang Hao.
As for his grades, he did alright, but he was ranked continuously below Tang Hao, which always made him feel inferior to the latter.
“Yo! You’re still the same as before! Dressing up so… uniquely!”
Luo Wei walked in front of Tang Hao and examined him from head to toe. The tone he used was somewhat condescending, not forgetting the disgusted look on his face. It was as if he was pleased with how Tang Hoe’s life was going.
Tang Hao frowned as his expression turned cold, yet he remained unperturbed.
“Tang Hao, how’d you do on your exam, which university are you going to?” Luo Wei continued to ask.
Tang Hao replied him with a cold expression, “I didn’t take the exam. I stopped going to school a while ago.”
Luo Wei was stunned, and subsequently, a cheerful look flashed across his eyes.
He pretended to sigh and said, “Sigh! That’s too bad! With your grades, it’s a pity that you’re not going to attend college.
“But this is good for you as well. College fees are quite expensive, so it would have been hard for you to bear. It’s good that you chose to get a head start in entering society, that way you can earn some money.”
He had turned up his volume on purpose, and everyone in the room heard what he said.
Instantly, there was a subtle change in everyone’s expression.
Although Tang Hao came from a low-income family, he still had good grades. So, his future was still bright. If he managed to get into a good university, there would be prospects for him in the future. Now that he had decided to skip college, they suspected that his life was well and truly ruined.
The only thing he could do now was work odd jobs, and there was nothing more to expect from him.
“Right, what kind of work are you doing now?” Luo Wei asked again.
“I’m not working!” Tang Hao answered him coldly.
“Oh! You’re not working!” Luo Wei dragged his intonation, his face filled with ridicule.
At this moment, he felt a surge of satisfaction rushing from inside him. He was always beaten by this jerk in terms of grades, and it had consistently made him feel inferior. Today, it felt like he had blown off some steam.
This guy was not even going to go to college. As for him, he was one class above him after being accepted into the national key university. The future for him was bright.
“Tang Hao, I bet you didn’t know, I got into the national key university! Who would’ve thought!” Luo Wei said in a flaunting manner.
“Is that so?” Tang Hao replied him with the same icy tone.
Then, he proceeded to glance around the room and said, “Sorry, I have to excuse myself!” Afterward, he immediately left.
Luo Wei’s expression stiffened and he became slightly gloomy. He murmured coldly, “Humph! What’s he trying to pull here? He’s just a deadbeat loser anyway, a bum that’ll never escape his fate in this lifetime.”
Tang Hao heard what he said and stopped in his tracks. However, he continued to walk forward.
At the dining table in front of him, a tall, thin boy stood up and greeted him warmly, “Hao’zi, long time no see!”
“Li Fei!” Tang Hao opened up his hands and hugged him.
The young lad’s name was Li Fei. He was one of Tang Hao’s few friends in junior high school.
“Luo Wei’s just one of those little people. Don’t mind what he said! Speaking of which, why did you stop going to school? It’s such a pity!” Li Fei said with a regretful look on his face.
“I have no talent in studying, so I couldn’t even get into senior high school. But you were different, Hao’zi. You had such good grades!”
Tang Hao laughed it off, “It’s fine. I’m living well nowadays anyway. Right, how are you doing?”
Li Fei immediately frowned whilst shaking his head, “My situation’s hard to describe with words!”
Tang Hao hurriedly asked.
Li Fei sighed and was about to speak up. However, his eyes inadvertently glanced toward the entrance, and he froze on the spot.