Chapter 152: Chapter 152
“No! What are you saying? You did a great job. What would have happened if we weren’t aware of that?”
“She’s so horrible! What a bitch!”
Listening to the burst of anger, Choi Yuri smiled awkwardly while narrowing her eyes in embarrassment.
“Well, this is just a guess, so I’m letting you guys know… just in case.”
“Geez… but Yuri, even if it’s true or not, you must say something to Ham Donnie for sure. Yeo Ryung is too nice to accept it, so she keeps denying the fact, but this shouldn’t happen at all.”
“True. Shouldn’t we also say something to her? If we don’t do anything, she’ll just get along with the Four Heavenly Kings nonchalantly as a friend of Ban Yeo Ryung. Gosh, that’s awful.”
Listening to the two girls whispering to each other with grimaces, Choi Yuri still had a puzzled look on her face. At that very moment, the back door suddenly swung open, and through the wet air flooding in, Ban Yeo Ryung and the Four Heavenly Kings walked inside the classroom. Choi Yuri hurriedly opened her mouth.
“Never mind. I just said something silly. Let’s wrap up here.”
Speaking like that, Choi Yuri settled the conversation for the time being. The classroom turned silent when the Four Heavenly Kings entered; the rest of them were staring at Choi Yuri and the group of girls beside her. Except for Ban Yeo Ryung and the Four Heavenly Kings, everyone in the class had already heard the girls’ conversation. Woo Jooin’s brown eyes that were glancing around the classroom suddenly locked onto Choi Yuri as it suddenly darkened. Choi Yuri looked at his side before sticking her tongue out to gently lick her lips.
* * *
It was almost one in the afternoon, but the clouds didn’t seem clear yet. The red-brown clouds and the low thundering sounds from across the sky evoked an apocalyptic ambiance. Although it was midday summer, we had to open all the fluorescent lights to have a proper class.
In the back of the classroom, rain-soaked umbrellas were sticking in random places or were hanging on the windowsill. Gray footprints were dotted over the place where the kids’ slippers had passed.
“Oh, I have to mop the classroom today!”
When someone vented his irritation, words of consolation came and went from one place to another with laughter. With my chin resting on my hand near the window, I sat quietly and waited for the bell. It was only ten minutes before lunch. I rolled my eyes.
Honestly, Class 1-1 was always the origin of the rumors for both this time and last time, so I received strange attention in the cafeteria for a while. This was the second time, so I thought that maybe it could be harsher. ‘Gosh, why should I get stressed out for such a thing! I didn’t do anything wrong, though,’ I sighed while clenching and unclenching my fist.
If I let Ban Yeo Ryung know about what happened, she would definitely get concerned about it; therefore, I didn’t tell her about this. From time to time, she was still afraid that I would turn away from her. I always felt her trembling gaze. ‘Ban Yeo Ryung will be having a hard time too since she only opens up to me,’ having that thought in mind, I heaved a sigh.
The class finished ten minutes before lunchtime, so we were enjoying a free atmosphere. Lee Mina, who sat beside me, asked in concern.
“Donnie, are you okay?”
She looked exhausted now as if saying, ‘Oh, how could such idiots exist?’ I thought that Lee Mina would also feel bewildered to stand against the stupid kids. I replied with a grin,
“Oh, I’m at a loss of words, but… I’m fine. It’s only fake rumors. I can’t catch and beat the one who’s spreading the rumors to jelly, you know.”
“Hey, that isn’t fine!”
Geez… Listening to her response, I quietly raised my both hands and covered my cheeks. ‘You’re right. I can’t be fine, can I?’ I thought. Honestly, I didn’t feel refreshed at all.
Being involved in fake rumors while everybody’s lips were uttering my name was such an unbearable thing. Heaving a sigh, I wrapped my throbbing head with both my hands. Suddenly, Ban Yeo Ryung’s bright angelic smile came across my mind.
Holy mother of pearl… Although Ban Yeo Ryung was the female protagonist of a web novel, had a gorgeous appearance, exceeded in everything she attempted, and even had Mr. Handsome as her brother, I shouldn’t be just envious of her. She was suffering from such rumors! People gossiped about her! How could those be so fine? I wouldn’t be able to endure it at all. If I could exaggerate this a little, then I felt like a celebrity who was being harassed by cyberbullying or malicious comments. That was how disgusting and awful the overall situation was to me.
With a sigh, I lowered my head in a rage then clenched my fist. When the lightning struck outside the window, the top of the desk suddenly shone a frightening yellow hue. The shadows of my classmates turned longer and shorter. Through the shades, I felt the eyes of so many people directed at me. Fortunately, none of them were hostile except for Lee Soo Yeon, who had a sneer on her lips. I sighed deeply once again.
At that moment, the bell rang to announce lunchtime. All the kids dashed into the cafeteria at once. Among the crowd, Yoo Jun In shouted at me.
“Hey, hurry up! We have chicken tortilla today!”
Those who were running out of the classroom exclaimed in joy. ‘How does he remember all the lunch meals every day?’ Looking at Yoon Jung In, I felt flabbergasted and burst into laughter. Regardless of their shouts, we walked toward the cafeteria slowly.
“Gosh, oppa. Be careful, the salad is falling to the opposite side.”
“Oh my, so that’s why I don’t have enough veggies.”
“Please don’t say that you’re my twin brother.”
The Kim twins were quarreling today as well because of something trivial. I heaved a sigh with a glance. Yoon Jung In was enjoying his food as if he was shooting a commercial. Then, I looked at Shin Suh Hyung, who was sitting beside me. He, however, didn’t look good today; besides, he left his chicken tortilla untouched. While having my meal, I threw him a question.
“Suh Hyun, why are you not eating?”
“He doesn’t like that kind of food.”
Soaking the rice into the soup, Yoon Jung In spoke on behalf of him. ‘Oh, yeah, thanks, bro. Please keep munching your food,’ murmuring to myself, I looked back at Shin Suh Hyun.
When our eyes met, he replied with a shrug.
“I enjoy them these days, but today, I’m not feeling well. Do you want to have it instead?”
“Aren’t you full?” asked Yoon Jung in, who was sitting across me.
It didn’t seem right for him to say that. ‘Hmm…’ I shrugged before looking down at the silver plate in front of me. ‘Did I have enough? I don’t think so…’ with that thought in mind, I soon gave a reply.
“Oh, whenever I feel stressed, I calm myself down by eating a lot.”
Yoon Jung In then concentrated on having his food again. I carefully grabbed the chicken tortilla from Shin Suh Hyun’s plate and tried taking a bite. The noise from the cutlery that was touching the metal plates and the other students’ loud voices filled the whole space. That was when I bit the tortilla and smiled in joy.
Someone was scowling at me from behind Yoon Jung In, who was sitting across me. I almost choked and kept on coughing.
Over the lightly colored, long cafeteria table, a group of girls was glaring at me fiercely.
‘Why me…?’ I thought, but as I took a closer look at them, they all looked familiar. Weren’t they Ban Yeo Ryung’s friends in her class? They were definitely the girls in Class 1-1. Since Ban Yeo Ryung wasn’t sitting with them, it looked like she was skipping lunch. Even the Four Heavenly Kings were missing.
‘Oh, god. I think I’m gonna swallow the wrong way. Why are they glaring at me? We never met each other personally. Should I scowl back at them too?’ I had those thoughts in mind; however, it might be more ridiculous to imitate them. Besides, if I stared at them too, then those girls would go straight to Ban Yeo Ryung and tattled on what I did.
‘It would be better not to draw their attention,’ with that thought in mind, I squeezed the rest of the chicken tortilla into my mouth. Somehow, it didn’t seem enough. Smacking my lips, I got up from my seat.
After throwing out the leftovers and placing the empty plate on the washer, I headed toward the cafeteria door. Since it was raining outside, kids were opening their umbrellas, which made others hardly step outside. Today was particularly crowded. ‘Jesus,’ it was when Yoo Jung In furrowed his brows in annoyance.
A girl’s calm voice pierced through the air and reached my ears.
“You’re Ham Donnie, right?”