101 | THMYO




last edited on ZLT: 30.03.19



Friday, when Xuan Mo got home, she saw her mother sitting facing the door as she held her head, looking very tired.

“You’re back so early?” Xuan Mo took off her bag as she asked.

Her mother sighed: “Mo Mo, come, c’mere, sit down.”

Xuan Mo walked over and sat down. When she saw her mother’s dark expression, she frowned: “What’s wrong?”

“Are you hungry, come, I’ve just bought some black forest, have some if you’re hungry.”

Xuan Mo shook her head: “What is it.”

“Your teacher told me everything.” Her mother rubbed her temples, “Mo Mo, this is a great opportunity, it’s something others would die to have, how can you… just throw it away like this?”

Xuan Mo looked at her, not speaking.

“After graduating from high school, I moved to the city to make a living, it was only after marrying your father did life finally become better, but who knew before long… I mean, you’ve seen how difficult it is for me to keep it up with the few stores I’m managing.”

Honestly speaking, Xuan Mo didn’t… to a military-trained person like her, it was enough of a dream to have food to eat and time to sleep every day; what’s wrong with having to leave early and return late because of work to maintain such a lifestyle?

“I’ve thought for a very long time, about why life was getting more and more difficult, and I realised that it was because my education was too low… if I’d attended university and know finance and accounting maybe then I won’t have been led astray by the accountants, and would have known how to strike when the iron is hot with the abundant business opportunities out there… it’s been ten years yet all I have is still these few stores. Ten years from now, I will still have the same few stores. Not only is it exhausting to hold out, I’d be laughed at for lacking business acumen… if I’d been daring enough and took out the money to buy a few more storefronts, our lives would be so much easier now.” Xuan Mo’s mother recalled the sorrows of the past, appearing as though ready to cry.

“We still had some help from your uncle back then, but now while he’s still willing to, we’d be troubling him too much if I were to keep turning to him for help. Mo Mo, you’re almost as adult now, do you know how happy I was to know that you’re doing really well in school? Sometimes, I’d think that it’s fine to be a bit more tired now, just hold out for a few more years, once my daughter is older, she’ll be able to help me out and I can finally enjoy life… but when your head of the teaching department called me, my heart went cold, Mo Mo, what exactly do you have in mind? How are you going to find a job and make a living if you don’t go to university, and you can’t produce a cert?”

Xuan Mo was silent for a moment before she cupped her forehead slowly, muttering: “This… is my responsibility too?”

“There’s the saying that goes, you raise your children so they can provide for you when you’re older. Mo Mo, it’s not that I’m pressuring you, even if I don’t need you to provide for me, I’d still be willing to provide for you, but I can’t be by your side forever, when I’m gone, the shops, the business, and your life… who’s going to look after you? You need to eat, to live, maybe marry someone in the future, and even after you’re married you can be an independent woman… Mo Mo, not everything in life will go the way we want it to go, do you understand?” Her mother sighed slowly. “The university said it, it’d good that you are opinionated and stand by it, but regardless they will still save you a spot. If you still want to go, you can contact them… Mo Mo, in life, sometimes there are things that we have to do, even if we don’t want to do them, do you understand what I’m saying?”

Xuan Mo nodded and exhaled. Standing, she said: “I will think about this… I’m going back to my room.”

“Enh. I’ll call you when dinner’s ready.” Xuan Mo’s mother stood too. As she did, she massaged her shoulders and thumped her back, appearing very exhausted.

Xuan Mo saw that. Lowering her gaze, she returned to her room.

She lied on her bed and look at the ceiling. After a long while, she slowly spoke: “Clothes, food, residence, that’s fine… earning money… providing for her… living… responsibility… hahh…”

Two days later, the students from year one class one realised in shock that Xuan Mo disappeared.

At the same time, year three class thirteen welcomed the first student that’d skipped grade in First High.

Lu Yu Chen watched, flabbergasted, when Xuan Mo walked into the classroom with confidence. After doing her self-introduction, she half-threatened-half-scared the girl sitting beside him away, plopped herself down beside him and started arranging her books.

“Mo, Mo… you… how did you…” He was incredibly confused. No one in their class got what was happening on either. If a student were to skip grades, you’d expect them to go to better classes, not to class thirteen…

“I didn’t know anyone in year three class one.” After arranging her books, Xuan Mo fixed her gaze on the blackboard and took down the expansion question left on the board by the math teacher from the previous class. “Thank goodness there’s you.”

Of course she didn’t mean anything more than what it meant, but Lu Yu Chen flushed when he heard that. He chuckled before reining in his grin: “Why did you skip grade? What’s happening?”

“Special recruit. I got a slot.” Xuan Mo was succinct and to the point. “I need to take the examination, and get the graduation cert.”

“…” Lu Yu Chen lowered his head. Entering his sight just as he looked down was the sixty-two marks written in bright red  on the math test paper that had been returned in the previous lesson. All of a sudden, the marks on his paper appeared particularly jarring.




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TRANSLATOR & EDITOR: WYNNE. This translation is hosted at ZHAN LANN

T/N: soz for the lack of update, covid’s wrecking my schedule literally; this sem’s a complete disaster thanks to this stupid coronavirus, also my submissions are all lumped together and the deadlines are closing in, so it’s crunch time T-T THMYO updates from Apr to mid May will be highly sporadic, sorry, i will try my best to keep to my usual schedule buuut acad first /e\ also all the posts on OWP and A-Z are all scheduled lol just in case you’re wondering why there’s everything else but no THMYO; honestly 2020’s been a real bitch really D: everyone please stay safe from COVID-19; if you haven’t been giving a damn about it, it’s high time to get serious




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