Chapter 135: The defanged tiger
The next morning, Huang Keshen woke up early and left. Xu Tingsheng, Old Wai and Tan Yao stood on the balcony, smoking. Old Wai was still feeling conflicted, just being unable to comprehend how things could have become like this between roommates.
After all, from the angle at which the photographs had been taken, it could be seen that it had been a premeditated, well-thought out plan on Huang Keshen’s part. Having schemed against his own roommates to so great an extent, what kind of great hatred was this? Where could such great hatred have stemmed from?
And what about that fight which had broken out that day for no rhyme or reason?
Tan Yao thought for a bit, realising that the other party may truly have come fully intending to get into that fight. That guy had only being pursuing Zhang Li for a couple of days. Logically speaking, it was rather implausible for him to have come looking for Tan Yao so quickly.
Looking again at the photographs posted on the forum, the ones which had been chosen were all ones where the faces of their opponents were either indistinct or simply hidden from view.
Xu Tingsheng had his understanding of Zhang Xingke as a person renewed once more. Thorough in his thoughts and meticulous in his preparations, he had already calculated ten, twenty moves ahead before making his move, also being unscrupulous in his means...really a goddamn talent, he was.
Li Xingming and Lu Xu both returned, running onto the balcony, “We’ve got it! Do you know what Zhang Xingke bought Huang Keshen with?”
“Don’t play games. Go straight to the point,” A despondent Tan Yao said in ill humour.
“He introduced a girl to Huang Keshen. She seems to have worked at a hairdresser shop before. Still, Huang Keshen might not know about this, because she no longer works there. She now works at Zhang Xingke’s intermediary company,” Li Xingming said, having learnt this news from his advantage of being a local.
“Anyway, the two of them are currently out playing while dating. From the looks of it, Huang Keshen seems like he’s extremely bewitched by her. I bet that girl’s just playing him, using him for his money.”
They all exchanged glances, feeling lost for words.
“No, the problem is-how did Zhang Xingke know that he would be able to buy Huang Keshen like this? If it’s women, the most buyable one should instead be Li Xingming, right,” Lu Xu said.
Li Xingming scolded ‘Scram’, “This old man’s now fully devoted to Zhu Yingying.” And, “That’s not right. Anyway, I wouldn’t betray my bros no matter what, regardless of whatever women.”
“What if it was Alizée?” Xu Tingsheng laughed as he asked.
“About that, hmmm...I think I’d still sell you then.”
Old Wai chuckled out loud. This guy had always been crazy infatuated with Alizée.
Everyone was finally smiling.
Xu Tingsheng did not share his understanding with them. Actually, it would not have been hard for Zhang Xingke to find Huang Keshen, because Huang Keshen hated these roommates of his.
This hatred did not require all of them to have done something to him. Instead, it stemmed from his psychological state of mind. Huang Keshen was a rather narrow-minded person. Initially, he had thought that he should preside loftily over them all. In the end, however, his roommates seemed to have all ended up doing better than him. Xu Tingsheng and Tan Yao were always beneath infinite limelight, Old Wai, Lu Xu and Li Xingming had either hooked up with a pretty girl or were soon to do so and Zhang Ninglang was taken care of by all of them as they would a younger brother.
Huang Keshen felt like he was an outsider, felt like he was being bullied, being left out, being looked down upon. Actually, these were all purely just his own subjective thoughts. Yet, as such thoughts gradually accumulated, they had eventually led to unfounded hatred.
Such hatred might not be clearly expressed back in their dorm. However, in front of outsiders, he would definitely have vented his dissatisfaction with his roommates, going first from scolding to eventually cursing and swearing…
Thus, with Zhang Xingke's network, wanting to find him would not have been hard at all, and bringing him over to his side would only have been easier. He couldn't be happier seeing things going badly for Xu Tingsheng. Moreover, he would also get a girl, and get friendly with the influential Zhang Xingke as well.
In the morning, as Xu Tingsheng and Old Wai sat down for class, some of their classmates were already beginning to direct gazes at them that were filled with differing meanings. There were concerned, sympathetic looks, gloating ones, curious ones, disdainful ones and even outraged ones.
The news that Xu Tingsheng and Old Wai were running Hucheng Education which had been gradually gaining influence in Xishan Academy City was still not well known throughout the entire campus. However, in their class, in the Chinese course, there were still quite a few who knew.
Xu Tingsheng was very casual regarding this, having never intentionally flaunted or concealed the fact.
“Hucheng's gotten into trouble.”
Many people already knew about this. News regarding Hucheng that ranged from the incident with Gu Yan to the fight in their dorm had spread throughout the various forums of the academy city as well as via word of mouth amongst them.
Once in a while, Xu Tingsheng and Old Wai would encounter some disdainful eye-rolling and disparaging noises, but they had neither the energy nor the intention to refute their beliefs.
Instead, it was their roommates who were constantly explaining things for them. For instance, Tan Yao repeatedly explained the specific circumstances behind that fight, saying that it was he who those people had come looking for.
Many people were still talking animatedly behind their backs.
“So he was actually that kind of person.”
“I’ve never seen him properly studying before. Other than picking up chicks, isn't all he's got money?”
“And to think that so many people still thought of him as a hero because of a football match.”
Having still been Yanzhou University's hero just a few months ago, Xu Tingsheng's fall from grace came quickly. The tiger had been defanged.
Of course, there were also those who came out in support of him.
“What's wrong with boys fighting? Is there a problem with entrepreneurship?”
“Don't forget that he's saved Yanzhou University from humiliation before. Anyway, I'm just taking him as a hero…”
“Whatever, I just support Xu Tingsheng. Why? Because he's handsome, yeah?”
However, when these voices that rose in support met 'bullying impoverished university students’, they all lacked the ability to resist as they were completely suppressed by this 'moral standard’.
The discussions continued, but this actually wasn't what Xu Tingsheng was concerned about. He was concerned about what Zhang Xingke would be doing next. He definitely still had something up his sleeve, because if it was merely this, while Hucheng had been left in a tragic state, it still hadn't reached the point of collapsing entirely.
“You are Xu Tingsheng of the Chinese course?” A counsellor stopped Xu Tingsheng at the door of the classroom.
“What about the one named Wa Aiyi?”
“I'm here,” Old Wai came over.
“Management Head Zhao of Student Management wants you two over at his office immediately,” They were told.
“We indeed fought, and it is only natural for us to be marked down for it. Still, Management Head Zhao, I'd like to ask-what does this have to do with our Hucheng Education Service Platform? The company has all the necessary facilities and no incident’s ever cropped up with it before...it shouldn't be to the point where the university wants us to shut it down, right?” Xu Tingsheng tried to show as much restraint as was possible.
Ever since they had stepped through this door, this Management Head Zhao's attitude could not have been any more apparent. He dispensed with even the most basic concealment, openly showing that he was here to resolve the problem for Zhang Xingke.
Old Wai who was more easily angered directly questioned, the pitch of his voice rising with every sentence, “What right have you to ask us to shut down the platform? Since when has the school had jurisdiction over this? Has the Trade and Industry Bureau here closed down?”
Management Head Zhao laughed disdainfully, “Of course I don't have the authority to ask you to shut down your platform. Still, while you can be marked down for fighting, you can be expelled over it as well. That is within my authority...consider it well, the two of you.”
“Heck, expel me if you can!” Old Wai made as if to dash forward.
Xu Tingsheng pulled him back, telling Management Head Zhao, “Give us a couple of days. I'll think about it when I get back.”
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