Later, Chi Xueyan often remembered that night.
At the age of 17 or 18, there were endless papers to finish, endless questions and knowledge that sounded insignificant to daily life but were extremely important for the future, as well as infinite hopes and longing.
He could always find different forms of happiness in the pale and boring days. He found it for himself and only shared it with himself.
But in this short yet long period of time, every time he looked back, the most memorable moment came from another pair of eyes.
It was like the only silent reef in his shaky youth.
The music reverberating in the night quietly set off waves in his heart.
The sound of the sea tide never stopped. It was so noisy that Chi Xueyan couldn’t even read his favorite mystery novels.
So he spent more energy on his studies than he did in the past.
The medical school of A College was the best and had a high score line.
He used to think that his score was almost enough and was too lazy to pursue a more difficult high score. He didn’t want to spend too much effort.
If he didn’t get in, he could go to other colleges. The difference wasn’t big and he didn’t care much.
Now Chi Xueyan no longer felt that way.
He just wanted to be admitted to the medical school of A College.
There was a big difference with other schools.
This sudden change surprised his teachers, who were accustomed to his lazy attitude.
The head teacher quickly called his parents.
Chi Zhongyuan thought that the time to pretend to be cool was coming again. He was about to take on the fierce tone of a strict father when he heard the teacher’s extremely happy praise.
“Xiao Chi’s performance during this period is very good and he rarely sleeps in class. Many teachers have specifically mentioned it to me. His grades in various subjects have also improved.”
“……” The ‘little brat’ on the edge of Chi Zhongyuan’s mouth froze. “Huh?”
Han Zhenzhen snatched the phone from her husband, whose mind couldn’t recover, and spoke to the teacher with a smile. “That’s great. I remember that the grades of Yanyan’s deskmate are very good. Was it driven by his deskmate?”
“Yes, I thought it was mainly due to parent’s supervision,” The teacher said with a smile. “He Qiao’s attitude toward learning is indeed very serious. He might’ve really set an example for Xiao Chi.”
“Speaking of which, the performance of Xiao Chi’s deskmate has also improved recently. It should be mutually pushing each other. They are both very smart. It will be the third year of high school soon. I hope they can maintain this momentum…”
To be honest, He Qiao in the past wasn’t as serious as the teachers thought. It was just that he concealed it better and wasn’t as obvious as Chi Xueyan.
He sometimes forgot to do his homework because he wanted to clear the game in one go. It was only after waking up that he hurriedly started to do his homework. If he didn’t have time to finish writing, he would lie that he forgot to bring it.
He Qiao, who liked to play games, still bought the long-awaited new equipment and display. He also bought the 3A game masterpieces released in spring and summer.
But he never opened them.
In his increasingly hectic senior year, He Qiao didn’t miss any new product discounts for the games he was interested in but he also restrained himself from spending his time on them.
In the increasingly neglected playroom, new and unopened game cartridges were neatly stacked together as if waiting for the brightest summer.
In the middle of summer when the sound of cicadas was particularly restless, the last bell rang and countless students walked out of the examination room with transparent stationary bags. Some were joyful, some were crying and others were depressed.
In the flow of people, Chi Xueyan was very calm.
He just subconsciously looked toward the other end of the crowd.
A moment later, he saw the figure coming out of the other examination rooms.
Among the parents waiting at the school gate, two mothers stood side by side.
The mother in a floral dress was holding a bag of delicious melon seeds that had almost run out while the mother in a shirt and jeans was carrying a bag of rubbish that was about to be full.
The two people were eating melon seeds while waiting for their sons. They chatted about each other’s youth with emotions outside the examination room before finally seeing the two people who walked out side by side.
They looked at each other with tacit smiles.
Sheng Xiaoyue’s tone elongated, “Oh.”
Han Zhenzhen raised an eyebrow. “Tsk tsk.”
The silent wait was over and the lively days had just begun.
The casual talk on that spring night at the age of 17 had come true.
Chi Xueyan got his wish and was admitted to the medical school of A College, majoring in stomatology.
His deskmate also got his wish and was admitted to the economics and finance major.
The school of economics and management was at the college opposite A College.
Summer at the age of 18 was the most brilliant and pure summer vacation in their lives.
The time had become so long and there was no pressure of the college entrance examination hanging above them. Without the relationship of sitting at the same desk, He Qiao didn’t know what to do.
He thought about it and often called Chi Xueyan to play games at home.
The new cartridges were unpacked one by one and the local leaderboard was full of records left by two different usernames.
There were often two records with different names but the same minutes and seconds next to each other.
It was a closer distance than reality.
In the end, his much older brother couldn’t stand it and tactfully reminded him that he could take advantage of this holiday to travel. He didn’t always need to make an appointment to play games.
He Qiao hesitated for a long time before asking uncertainly, “Do you have plans to go on a graduation trip?”
Chi Xueyan responded directly, “Not before, but now there is. Shall we go together?”
This time, it was a firmer and more natural ‘we.’
Then ‘if one day’ that he thought was impossible to appear actually arrived.
He Qiao indulged in this rich smile and was dazed for a long time before accepting the invitation very solemnly.
“Okay, let’s go together.”
So they left the games and novels behind and embarked on a journey together.
They traveled by plane, train, bus and ship through the sky, mountains, land and sea.
It was from a bustling city to a quiet island. Along the way, there was blue air, laughter and two ice creams shaken by the waves.
The youthful and ignorant high school years came to a romantic end.
On the day they had to report to college, his parents accompanied Chi Xueyan to school.
He went to college in a familiar city, was surrounded by a long-awaited campus environment and had roommates he got along well with.
It was just that there were some faint discomforts.
College no longer had fixed deskmates.
His high school classmate was at the college next door right now. Like him, He Qiao was looking forward to the new life ahead.
They walked through the pine trees scattered all over the same street and stared at the blue sky.
Chi Xueyan stood in front of the window and gazed into the distance. He thought for a while, gathered his thoughts and turned around to walk toward his roommate who was calling his name.
The same was true of He Qiao, who was in another school.
He went to the cafeteria with his new classmates, went to the classroom together and participated in clubs together.
Just as in the past, he would often exchange messages and chat with Chi Xueyan.
“How is A College? Is the dormitory nice?”
“Everything is good but the cafeteria closest to the dormitory isn’t good.”
At the end of 18 and the start of his 19th year, He Qiao still didn’t confess and didn’t tear off the almost transparent window paper.
When love officially began, they would monopolize each other’s passionate love period. It shouldn’t overlap with the freshman year that should be full of new friends, leaving a regretful sense of loss. This tacit ambiguity, no matter how long or short, was worth cherishing.
He guessed that Chi Xueyan probably thought the same way.
They always had a tacit understanding.
“Is the food in the cafeteria bad?”
“It has gone beyond the category of whether it is good or not. It is a bit anti-human.”
The deeply curious He Qiao made a special trip to A College. Under the leadership of Chi Xueyan, he walked into the student cafeteria closest to the dormitory building. Then he tasted a dark cuisine that he could never forget.
It was so much so that the next morning, he even felt that he tasted a touching delicacy when he ate breakfast with normal ingredients at the school cafeteria.
“Do you like fried dumplings?”
“Yes. What about it?”
Under the snow-covered pine trees at the school gate, He Qiao waited for the other person to appear. His coat pockets bulged and exuded heat.
Chi Xueyan liked the breakfast fried dumplings of the cafeteria of the opposite college.
Even on a cold snowy day, the bag of fried dumplings handed to him was warm.
Thus, he ate the best fried dumplings he had ever had.
In the rehearsal room loaned by the music club, deafening noises lingered everywhere. Chi Xueyan calmly held the bass and played lazily while missing the meal of the opposite college’s cafeteria.
He had a roommate who was proficient in all types of musical instruments and always held personal recitals in the dormitory. After a long time, he became interested and was enthusiastically pulled by his roommate to play in the band.
Chi Xueyan decided to learn the bass, one of a band’s most overlooked instruments.
Therefore, no one found when he occasionally wanted to be lazy.
After the rehearsals, he sent He Qiao the audio he had recorded halfway. The piece of music was full of vague roars and manic melodies.
A moment later, he received a call from He Qiao.
The other person’s tone was full of uncertainty. “Are you at school? Is this a band rehearsal?”
“The guitarist was driven crazy by finals week and wrote the name of pharmacology drugs into illogical lyrics, saying that he wants to try heavy metal.”
He Qiao seemed to be relieved and joked, “So the drummer and keyboard player are also crazy?”
“Basically. This is what us medical students do in the finals week.”
Chi Xueyan heard laughter on the other end of the phone and laughed too.
It was the end of the semester and freshman year was coming to an end.
He had tasted this novelty for the first time in his life and there was another new thing to be experienced seriously.
He Qiao asked him, “My exams will finish next week. Do you want to go out and play?”
“No, I’m going to practice the bass.”
“Is there a performance?”
“Yes, our band is going to put on a show at the orientation party after school starts.”
“Performing pharmacology heavy metal?”
“No,” Chi Xueyan said with a smile. “It is a very good song.”
It was the best song to sing to their sweetheart at the end of summer. Nine out of ten bands performed this song.
“You’ll find out on that day.”
Chi Xueyan didn’t announce the answer and just reminded him to come.
He Qiao finished the call. He looked at the mobile phone display that had been dark for a long time and suddenly had an answer.
At the end of summer at the age of 19, there was a lively party to welcome new students.
Chi Xueyan finally changed from a junior to a senior and performed with the band members.
The clear and bright sound echoed in the early autumn night.
The song was called Perfect Summer.
It was a specific, grand, love-related summer.
On the stage, there was a smiling lead singer and guitarist, a keyboard player with a gentle temperament and a female drummer with cool makeup.
There was also a bass player with a relaxed and unrestrained expression, holding an instrument that was often overlooked and mistaken. However, he was the one who attracted the most attention from the audience.
At the end of the song, amidst the cheering and applauding students in the audience, a girl with a red face rushed up. Without saying a word, she handed him a large bouquet of beautiful flowers, too nervous to speak.
The students below started stirring like crazy. The hormones of youth were rampant and someone shouted for her, “Bass player! Do you want to fall in love or not?”
Immediately afterward, both men and women shouted together.
In the roaring sound, the bassist’s gaze crossed the bouquet of flowers close at hand and saw the figure in the crowd instantly.
The person accustomed to waiting for him took a slow step forward and stood quietly in the dim shadows, holding a bouquet of blooming red roses in his arms.
It looked even more beautiful than the bouquet of flowers in front of him. It was so beautiful that it reminded people of the golden past. The countless lights and shadows scattered in the river of time and there was another narrative hidden in the complete article.
Maybe it was about the love that he didn’t expect or about the sudden turbulent youth.
The clear and colorful fragments emerged from the old days like illusionary bubbles, like dew and lightning or like an endless surging tide, sweeping and converging on that person and shining.
What if one day he went back to 17? Would he fall in love?
At this moment, Chi Xueyan thought that the age of 19 wasn’t too late.
In fact, he wanted to tell He Qiao that his heartbeat had been pounding since that night when he was 17 years old.
He wanted to tell that man—you were the only silent reef in my shaky youth.
But this was a secret feeling that didn’t need to be known by others.
It didn’t have to be told to the one he loved.
However, he liked this type of feeling. Even if he kept silent, it would be revealed through his instinctive actions.
He Qiao must’ve discovered his crush as well.
So in the end, the bass player with dark hair soaked with sweat covering his forehead casually grabbed the tilted microphone stand. He lowered his eyes and spoke in a direct tone, “Sorry, I have someone I like.”
The clear and cold voice spread from the microphone to every corner of the auditorium.
After the screams that almost toppled the roof, Chi Xueyan stared at a certain place in the crowd for a long time and a beautiful smile gradually appeared on his delicate face.
He stood in the dazzling light and stretched out his hand in a dim direction under the stage, saying in a bright tone, “I saw that you brought flowers.”
“Do you want to bring it to me?”