I’m sorry to my few CC readers for not posting a chapter last week. I’ve just been too preoccupied with school and other things, and these chapters are really long >.<
The last line of this chapter is one of my favorites and Frosty agreed:
“Aww…that was so sweet. I finally understand why you ship ZMM x JNN.”
My new OTP~ ❤
Translated by: Taffy
Edited by: Frosty
Quiz 55: Final Exam
It was the first day of school in the new year, and the students all rushed to school early. Originally, they’d prepared to attend the grand, yet dull, flag raising ceremony, but at that moment, something strange happened—Zhuge Meng Ming and Zhou Lun Yu were both summoned by the administration!
The head of the administration was a heavy-set middle aged man. He was currently holding a cigarette in his mouth as he looked out his window to enjoy the sight of the students gradually gathering on the field. He seemed to be very laid back.
Why did he call us here… Meng Ming thought that the head’s expression was strange.
“The reason I suddenly called you guys here is because of a matter that’s a bit difficult to say.” The head turned around. Although his posture was very carefree, his face seemed tense. There wasn’t much time left until the flag raising ceremony, so he immediately went straight to the point. “It’s like this, the final exams are beginning soon. The principal will announce this to everyone shortly before the flag raising ceremony begins. This year’s final exam will be the same as last year—from the first years, 35 volunteers will be picked from the top 50 ranks in the midterm exam to participate in dual school joint examinations with Kui Yuan Central High.”
“Kui Yuan Central High?!” Meng Ming was surprised by the name.
“What?” Zhou Lun Yu asked. “You know about that school?”
“No, no, I don’t know…but, why summon us?” Meng Ming asked the head.
The head blew out a mouthful of smoke. “You two are both C-type students, so I want to invite both of you to participate.”
What?! This time, unlike his last surprise, Meng Ming was truly shocked.
How… Zhou Lun Yu also found it strange. I understand knowing that I’m a C-type, but how was Zhuge Meng Ming’s identity as a C-type discovered?
“How did you know?!” Meng Ming directly asked.
“I saw everything during that time you broke the surveillance cameras,” the head replied. “Although I don’t know why you broke them, destroying a surveillance camera is something that only a C-type would do…”
Meng Ming was stunned. Yet, when he went back and thought about it, the midterm exam rules didn’t forbid breaking the surveillance cameras, and the head hadn’t been able to catch any real traces of him cheating, so he was still very safe.
Meng Ming was still a bit speechless. However, he was quite grateful that the administration head hadn’t publicized this…nor asked him to pay money for the cameras.
That’s indeed correct. Zhou Lun Yu also recalled the situation back then. Theoretically speaking, the proctors wouldn’t have been able to do anything in that kind of situation. Moreover, if schools want to accuse students of cheating, they’d need solid evidence, just like for a murder. Charging someone based on having broken some cameras won’t do anything.
“What do the joint examinations have to do with C-type students?” Zhou Lun Yu directly refocused the conversation to the original topic.
Having been brought back to the main point, the head slowly said—
“Every year, our Lin Xian Central High has some grades take final exams with another school. Traditionally, our first years always take it together with Kui Yuan Central High. They are a major senior high school in the same district as us, but, in terms of advancement rate, our school is at 98.93% and theirs is higher, at 99.17%. However, they have never once defeated us in the first years’ joint examinations.”
“Kui Yuan Central High’s grade level joint examinations with other schools always have a chance of victory. The only school they can’t defeat in the first years’ joint examinations is us. They refuse to accept it every year. Furthermore, the victory is related to the school’s reputation, and directly affects the percentage of people that take the entrance exam. That’s why we always worry…”
“Worry that the other school’s students will do something to our students?” Meng Ming asked.
“Yes. Students always want their own school to be better, since it also makes their student ID more effective. If their school’s C-types attack our L-types with malicious intent, then it’ll spell trouble. Our teachers will be the ones responsible for proctoring and securing the sites.” The head emphasized, “But—I must specially request for you guys to properly protect our students on site!”
“So it’s like that.” Meng Ming thought it over for a bit.
“Yes. You only need to provide protection if any danger appears. You must not disrupt others’ exams.” A hint of a dark smile appeared on the head’s face. “It’s just that, very simple, right?”Although it’s said that the students must volunteer to attend, I’m sure that student Zhuge Meng Ming definitely wants to participate, right?”
Meng Ming wasn’t actually interested at all in the school’s victory. However, when he looked up at the head’s expression…a feeling of pressure appeared. The head’s gaze seemed to say: Brat, if you dare to skip out, I’ll publicize everything about you.
“I, I got it…I can’t possibly skip out, right? Ha, haha…” Meng Ming bitterly laughed. He was lacking a better option; after all, he owed the head both a favor and money.
It’s also good, since attending that should mean I won’t receive any letters of challenge or whatever…not bad, Meng Ming thought. He was actually worrying about Zhou Lun Yu.
“You can go attend, then. There’s no need for me to participate in this kind of exam,” Zhou Lun Yu stated, before turning around and preparing to walk out of the administration’s office. He also believed that whether the school won or lost had nothing to do with him.
The head said something else that immediately stopped Zhou Lun Yu in his tracks—
“I recall that student Zhou Lun Yu started attending Lin Xian in junior high. The main proctor and examiner this time is Teacher Sun Ming Qing.”
Zhou Lun Yu suddenly froze. Nobody could see his expression, but he seemed to have suddenly remembered something—It’s…that person…?!
“Also, if you attend this joint examination, you only need to take three subject tests for the final, unlike the other students that are required to take the district unified eight subject tests in their original school,” the head said. This meant that if one attended the joint examinations, they would take five less exams. Moreover, the ones participating in the exams were all people with outstanding grades. To Zhou Lun Yu…
To reiterate, the district unified exams were a series of final exams that every student in the same school district at the end of their first term would have to uniformly take. At the end of the second term, there would be a province-wide unified examination. All of China’s school divisions attended this unified exam. Both of these exams would rank the students participating based on total points, thus recording each student’s strength. To every student, these final exams were tests filled with extreme importance!
After hearing this, Zhou Yun Lu no longer had any intention of leaving. Without turning around, he said, “And the test papers are different as well?”
“In order to make the joint examination fair and equal to all, the test papers are obviously different. The entire site only tests three subjects,” the head said. “The dual school joint examinations have a total of 70 people taking this version of the exam, 35 from each school. These 70 people’s scores are calculated to determine which side wins. These 70 grades will all be rationally calculated and placed on an entire district ranking list.”
“Then what kind of people does the opposing party have?” Zhou Lun Yu continued to ask. He wanted to know reports about the C-types in Kui Yuan.
“The L-types don’t need to be discussed. According to our reports, their current first years are much stronger than their past first years, with students that are top-notch in the district. There are three main people that are noteworthy…”
“Lu Xiao?” Meng Ming suddenly asked.
“That’s right,” the head said, his expression displaying some tension. “You know him? Lu Xiao counts as one, but among the three, he’s ranked last. The dangerous ones are unfortunately the other two…one of them was ranked above Zhou Lun Yu in the district rankings during junior high. In the last junior high district exams that Zhou Lun Yu particpated in, you were ranked eighth in the entire district, right?”
Zhou Lun Yu said yes.
The head said, “In that same exam, this C-type was ranked second in the entire district.”
“Moreover, that person is a typical delinquent. Many people know that he finds pleasure in harassing examinees at the site…Every exam, all the students that take the exam with him…” The head’s expression darkened. “Are practically unable to hand in their test papers at all.”
The two people were shocked. To think that such a thing actually existed…who was this person, to be able to harm an entire exam site?!
Finds pleasure in harassing examinees? He’s pretty much a freak… Meng Ming thought.
So this was the reason why Lin Xian Central High had to send their C-type students out; it was to prevent their examinees from suffering damage on this important final exam—the joint examinations were actually very dangerous.
Zhou Lun Yu fell silent for a bit before saying, “Hmph, I’ll think about it,” then left.
At this moment, Meng Ming abruptly asked the head subtly, “Did the first years participate in this kind of joint competition last year as well?”
“Did you request the aid of some C-type students?”
After hearing Meng Ming’s question, the head immediately looked at a loss on how to respond, and stuttered, “Mmm, actually, this is a bit embarrassing to say…there were indeed C-types present, and they actually did quite well too. But, honestly speaking, I really didn’t want to ask them…”
As, as expected, it’s that stupid Quartet group…
After school let out…
“Tada, this is what you wanted.” Duan He passed some papers densely covered with tables over to Meng Ming and asked, “You’re really going to attend the joint examinations?”
“Mm, I cannot skip out. The administration head knows I’m a C-type student…” Meng Ming casually flipped through the papers. It was a comprehensive ranking list of all the students from the last junior high district unified examination, as well as the senior high’s that everyone had entered afterwards.
“Alright, either way, a lot of the top 50 L-types wanted to participate in the final joint exams with Kui Yuan Central High after hearing the principal announce it this morning. There’s at least no need to worry about not having enough people,” Duan He said. “Testing three subjects is enough, but if you don’t do well and affect our victory, it is very easy to be blamed and punished. Especially in your case…”
Meng Ming was a bit concerned about the C-type that had rendered the entire exam site’s students unable to hand in their tests. As he walked back to the classroom, he asked, “Sister Duan He is also within the top 50 places, so you’ll definitely participate in the joint exam as well, right?”
“No, I won’t. I’ll be taking part in the eight subjects unified exam,” Duan He replied.
“Ah? Why! If you don’t come…we’ll suffer major losses in our battle power.” Meng Ming was somewhat caught unprepared by Duan He’s reply.
“Oh? You’re worried about battle power, huh. Isn’t Zhou Lun Yu participating? There’s no problem then,” Duan He said. “I agreed with my classmates ages ago that I’d take the unified exams with them. No choice.”
Attending the joint exams or not depended on the examinee’s will. Only if the number of participants did not meet the demand would the school act accordingly.
Zhou Lun Yu? He asked the head so many questions this morning, who knows what exactly he’s thinking about… Meng Ming looked in the classroom and saw that Zhou Lun Yu’s seat was already empty. Zhou Lun Yu had left school unusually early, having left to some unknown place.
“I don’t know anything about Kui Yuan, so this is all I can help with.” Duan He also left. Meng Ming could only return to his seat and read through the ranking lists Duan He had given him with Huang Qiao Yi.
“Little Qiao, what was your ranking in that junior high district unified exam?” Meng Ming asked.
Huang Qiao Yi thought about it for a bit. “I remember that I seem to have been something like rank 32 in the entire district. Whatever it was, it was within the top 50.”
“Have Little Qiao’s grades always been so good…” Meng Ming flipped to the first few names, and saw that Huang Qiao Yi was indeed ranked 32nd. It was written that she’d attended Guan Tang Central High for junior high, and afterwards, that she was now attending Lin Xian Central High for senior high.
“Yes. The final exam was a very important test. Who is Brother Meng Ming looking for?”
“Lu Xiao.” Meng Ming continued down the list to search, and only after reaching the 400s did he see Lu Xiao’s name. “So Lu Xiao is actually this bad…”
“You can’t say that,” Huang Qiao Yi analyzed. “There are many, many people in the entire district. Rank 429 is still average level.”
Lu Xiao had started junior high in Kui Yuan. Like Zhou Lun Yu, he’d risen up to attend the same senior high as his junior high.
“Also, Zhou Lun Yu…” Meng Ming flipped back to the beginning and looked at rank 8. As expected, it was Zhou Lun Yu. He’d originally attended junior high at Lin Xian, then left in the middle, and ended up transferring back to Lin Xian for senior high. “If Lu Xiao counts as average, then wouldn’t Zhou Lun Yu be…” Meng Ming thought: If Zhou Lun Yu is willing to attend the joint examination, then there really would be no reason to worry…
“That’s right!” Meng Ming suddenly remembered that the administration head had mentioned that the typical delinquent that liked to harass examinees for fun was ranked 2nd in the entire district! Meng Ming immediately looked at the upper part of the list and saw that the one ranked as the district’s number two was named—Guo Dian, currently attending Kui Yuan Central High for senior high.
This…was a powerful enemy!
Guo Dian. This is the freak C-type that makes it impossible for people to submit their tests?! …We have to go up against this kind of person. Ranked 2nd in the entire district, meaning six ranks higher than Zhou Lun Yu… Meng Ming analyzed as he looked at the name.
Harming an entire site, exactly how powerful is he? What kind of methods would he use…we must go against him seriously………………..hmm?!
As he was thinking this, he accidentally glanced at the name of the district’s rank one student.
This name shocked Meng Ming—
This person had attended Ying Hua Central High for junior high, and entered Lin Xian for senior high! The name of the entire district’s rank one was actually—Jin Nai Nai!
“As long as she participates in the joint examination, there won’t be a problem!” Meng Ming lifted his bag and strode towards Class C. He planned to look for Jin Nai Nai and directly ask her if she’d attend or not.
“But, on what basis does Brother Meng Ming think she’s a C-type?” Huang Qiao Yi followed closely behind him.
“If she’s not a C-type, then what is she?” It was a strange statement, but it was a rather powerful one. “Even if I had to pass over mountain ridges and slash my way through thorny vines, I still need to find her first.” Meng Ming stepped into Class C’s room. “Is Jin Nai Nai here?” He asked a girl sitting in the front row.
There weren’t that many students left in the classroom. The girl hadn’t even responded before another girl wearing very large glasses and carrying a backpack appeared before Meng Ming.
I hadn’t thought that she’d be so easy to find… Before Meng Ming even had a chance to react, Jin Nai Ni jumped in shock first.
She’s Jin Nai Nai? I think I’ve occasionally seen her around school before. [Huang Qiao Yi]
“Ah, it’s you.” Jin Nai Nai took the initiative to speak first. “You’re Zhuge Meng Ming from Class A, right?” Her large eyes stared at him unblinkingly with a look that could’ve been of either sincerity or innocence.
“Long time no see. It’s me…” Since the opposite party had appeared so suddenly, Meng Ming was momentarily unable to react. Instead, he directly asked, “Um, are you attending the joint examinations? The dual school joint exams with Kui Yuan Central High, I mean.”
Jin Nai Nai was pretty astonished at this. “Did you come to invite me? I really do want to participate, but it might not be possible.”
“Not possible? Why?” Meng Ming blurted out. These joint exams had voluntary admission; if she really wanted to attend, why couldn’t she?
“Ah, I can’t really say it. I need to hurry up and go home now, we can talk some other time. Bye.” After she finished speaking, she quickly walked away, leaving Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi blankly standing there.
“What’s going on, she left just like that?” Just as before, Meng Ming felt that this girl was too strange. “She can’t really say? What does that mean?”
“In short, she basically can’t attend,” Huang Qiao Yi concluded.
“That won’t do, I have to go and ask for clarification.” If Meng Ming didn’t verify it, he wouldn’t be able to sleep. Seeing that it was about time for him to go home and eat as well, there wasn’t much point in chasing after her. Instead, he could only ask the girl in the front row once more, “May I ask if you know where Jin Nai Nai’s home is?”
She replied, “Jin Nai Nai’s home? I know. But if you want to look for her, going to her house is definitely impossible.”
“Ah? And why is that?!”
“Her family has very strict discipline. Aside from going to school, she’s pretty much not allowed to go out. She spends all of her time outside of class staying at home to study.”
Meng Ming was greatly shocked at this. “Ah!! No way! Don’t tell me that…”
“Yeah, she’s a standard L-type student. Everyone knows that.”
Meng Ming was shocked speechless. The girl continued, “It seems that she’d finally gotten the chance to go out once a few days ago, and came home carrying a large address book. But it was immediately taken away by her mother, who said that it would affect her studies.”
“Why…why is it like this…”
“You want to ask why…that’s…mainly because the sole son in their family, Jin Nai Nai’s younger brother, lost his eyesight in both eyes due to an accident when he was young, making it impossible for him to study. Their parents placed all of their hopes on Jin Nai Nai…thus…ha, she has a great amount of pressure on her shoulders. I won’t say too much about someone else’s family matters. If you want to know her address, I can tell you.”
Would getting her address still be of any use?
Really strange. Jin Nai Nai…regardless of whether she’s an L-type or a C-type… Meng Ming wasn’t sure if it was because of curiosity, or because he wouldn’t give up on pulling her in to join the group, but his desire to understand Jin Nai Nai became stronger. In brief, I want to go.
“Tell me the address, then, thanks.”
At this time, Zhou Lun Yu was sitting at his family’s teahouse, discussing something with a person in the corner; however, the main stage was still Jin Nai Nai’s home. This was their conversation during dinner:
“Mother, I want to participate in the joint exams,” Jin Nai Nai calmly said. She’d prepared for joining this kind of competition for ages, and, today, Class A’s students had even taken the initiative to invite her.
She received a complete rejection.
“But, joint exams with another school would allow me to test both my own and the school’s strength.”
“Who cares what the school is doing, it’s not like you’re studying for the school’s sake! Testing in only three subjects is too little!” Her mother fiercely contested. “The first final exam in senior high is very important, so properly take the unified tests. Studying means you only need to take care of your own grades; you have to honor both yourself and the family! Got it? You must seriously take the eight subject exams.”
“Yes.” Jin Nai Nai was still very calm, her round eyes opened wide.
“Letting you go out for half a day on the last day of the year already wasted a lot of time. If you need to buy materials to do homework, you can just ask someone else to buy it. You aren’t to go do it yourself anymore from now on. Look, how are you going to make up for the work you missed now? After dinner, Teacher Liu and Teacher Liao will come tutor you until 9pm. After that, I’ll help you study literature,” her mother said.
“Huh? Then what about Teacher Luo?”
“He’s not suited to be a home tutor. I just fired him, and will get a replacement for you.”
This was a villa-like house. At the moment, Meng Ming was sitting alone outside the door. Although the house was gorgeously decorated, it wasn’t something Meng Ming really cared for. He constantly thought back to the words that Jin Nai Nai had said that day at X-seven Western pastry shop.
—Can’t you just let me do what I want?
If she was a girl completely locked in her home, her dream was definitely leaving happily and going out to play one day! If she felt aggrieved at all, it didn’t show on her face at all…what exactly was Jin Nai Nai’s personality like?
Compared to the other two prizes, that kind of cute address book suits her the best.
Several days had passed already. But, back then, Jin Nai Nai had hugged that large address book and displayed a sincere smile. The shock it had induced was still fresh in Meng Ming’s memory.
It was a strange feeling that could shake one’s heart!
Meng Ming didn’t care about the joint exams, nor whether she was an L-type or a C-type.
I have to invite her to come out. He swore, only for the sake of that smile.