He shot Fatty a look, which prompted Fatty to immediately come over and drag Sun Zhang away by his collar.
Everyone on the field, including Ji Yi, was silent as they watched it all unfold.
As he soaked in the sun, the bright red splotches stood out on He Jichen's white shirt. He stared unwaveringly at Ji Yi for a while, then said, "He won't harass you anymore." As though he felt like those words weren't quite enough, he added, "Nobody will ever harass you anymore." He then turned to leave.
That wasn't the end of that incident. Even though a fight hadn't broken out in school, the principal was alerted.
In addition to He Jichen's parents being called again, He Jichen was given another major demerit and was punished to clean the toilets for another month.
After school that day, He Jichen lazily leaned up against the window sill for the millionth time as he directed Fatty and the gang to clean the toilets.
Something was different this time. As the rowdy gang was cleaning, Ji Yi appeared in her school uniform and backpack in front of He Jichen.
Fatty and the others stared at Ji Yi with gaping mouths in a daze, then looked at He Jichen before repeatedly calling out "Woah!" in succession. Before they could finish, He Jichen shot a glance at them, causing them to immediately seek shelter in the toilet stalls. Because they ran in such haste, a few of them crashed into each other hilariously.
Ji Yi lowered her head and pursed her lips into a smile.
The sun shone alluringly over Ji Yi's head and over her face. The atmosphere was like something straight out of a movie.
Her faint smile was like a shockingly beautiful flower blooming inside He Jichen's heart.
In that instant, all the sorrow he felt on his birthday was suddenly wiped clean. He turned to glance at her and smiled too.
After a while, He Jichen retracted his smile and asked nonchalantly, "Did you need something?"
"No..." replied Ji Yi, also nonchalantly.
"Oh." He Jichen's tone of voice didn't sound as relaxed as before.
Ji Yi's eyes smiled brightly and she said, "Thank you."
He Jichen knew she was thanking him for what happened that afternoon. Thinking about it, this was the first time she spoke to him like that since he met her. All of a sudden, He Jichen was flustered for a good moment before he averted his eyes out the window, pretending like it was nothing. "It was no big deal."
Silence fell between the two of them again.
After about a minute, He Jichen suddenly asked, "Wanna go home?"
Ji Yi let out a "Mm."
He Jichen picked up his backpack sitting on the window sill. "Let's go."
Ji Yi casually looked over at the toilets. "Is it okay for you to leave just like that?"
He Jichen knew what Ji Yi meant. This time, the school punished him to clean the toilets on his own. He turned his head and shouted in the direction of the toilets, "Clean up good for me!"
"Yes!" came an ear-splitting roar from inside the toilets.
Amidst the roar, He Jichen strode off with Ji Yi. The two of them walked, one after the other, down the stairs.