It was in the afternoon when they gathered at classroom 403 of Building A. The final class meeting for the undergraduate mathematics class was held as scheduled.
A group of boys squeezed into the classroom. The thin and tall instructor who was wearing a pair of glasses walked over.
This instructor’s name was Zhang Wei and he was studying a PhD in mathematics. He was usually busy with his own research project and therefore, he was rarely seen.
Although he was busy, he still cared about the class activities. He would arrange a meeting almost every month and talk about safety, discipline, and study techniques. He would even brag to the undergraduate students about the time when he was still studying the bachelor’s degree.
Instructor Zhang slowly walked to the podium and put his hands behind his back. He scanned the students below, cleared his throat, and said, “After this meeting today, your first year at the university will come to a successful conclusion. Let me emphasize again on safety. Last time there’s this dumbass who left his burning hot outlet in the dorms and burnt the whole thing down. He’s probably doing his college entrance exam again this year. Who knows if we’ll see him after the summer.”
Sounds of laughter came out of the classroom.
Instructor Zhang coughed lightly and said with a smile, “I’m just joking to keep the atmosphere light. In short, you must be careful regarding safety! I know for a fact that some people are hiding hair dryers and other electronics that heat up fast. They even sneaked pass inspection. But I hope those people will check that their socket is unplugged…”
Instructor Zhang rambled on for 20 minutes regarding safety issues. He paused and started to talk about the conclusion of the semester, “You guys did pretty well in your exams. I hope you can keep it up. Also number three helper, you have to work hard as well. Don’t think that being a part of the class committee is just collecting homework and having meetings. You should also set an example for studying.”
The committee member that got called out smiled awkwardly and scratched his head.
He was considered a genius when he first came to the university. However, he kept on having too much fun and now his studies were taking a hit. It was true that he did horrible this semester. He only received a 65 for advanced algebra, but he was ready to take it again.
Instructor Zhang continued, “Student Luo Rundong did pretty good, 95 marks, and only one mistake. Congratulations to him! Also, Student Liu Rui, 92, not bad as well! Only these two people got over 90 marks. Everyone else has to work harder!”
Huang Guangming reached out and rubbed Liu Rui’s shoulder as he said softly, “You’re too good, Brother Liu!”
Shi Shang also reached out his hand and rubbed Liu Rui’s other shoulder, “Too good, too good! Give us some of your good luck!”
“Get off me. It’s too hot!” said Liu Rui as he pushed the hands off him and acted annoyed. He then sighed in relief and felt satisfied.
As expected, he had overestimated it. Only two people got over 90 marks and that were him and a genius mathematics student called Luo Rundong.
As for Lu Zhou…
He’s still far behind!
Dumb student, pretending to go to the library!
The class started to argue as they were envious of the two genius students.
This advanced algebra exam wasn’t difficult, it was very difficult!
The paper was written by Professor Tang and all the questions were on the verge of being impossible to solve. The questions were not exactly unexpected, but they always hit the students’ knowledge base blind spots. It was difficult just to get 80 marks and anyone that could get 90 was a god!
“In addition, I want to greatly praise student Lu Zhou. Lu Zhou’s improvement this semester was tremendous. 100 marks in both mathematical analysis and advanced algebra! He shocked the teachers. They even doubled marked his exam paper and it was still full marks. Not a single mistake. He has the exact right attitude in learning, similar to my style in the past. You guys should learn from him,” said Instructor Zhang as he stared at Lu Zhou with an expression of approval and nodded his head.
The people in the class froze instantly.
No one responded to the instructor’s praise of Lu Zhou.
Luo Rundong’s eyes went wide opened as he looked behind in disbelief. Liu Rui’s smug smile became very stiff and even his eyebrows were twitching.
Like someone who had set off a firework, the classroom instantly exploded into chatter.
“F*ck me! Brother Lu is insane!”
“Too good, too good!”
“Holy sh*t, he’s insane!”
“Ah, I thought he turned in his paper because he didn’t know how to answer the questions, but I guess it was because he finished…”
Huang Guangming and Shi Shang did not say a word and reached out with their hands. Lu Zhou quickly dodged and warned them, “I’m warning you. Don’t touch me. I’m not gay!”
Huang Guangming smiled mischievously and reached out, “Come on, Brother Lu, let us get some of your luck.”
Shi Shang said impolitely, “Yeah, big boy.”
Instructor Zhang looked at the classroom that was in chaos and did not interrupt. He slowly walked to Lu Zhou and said to him, “Of course, even though you scored full marks, don’t get too cocky. Continue to work hard. What the hell did you write in modern history? You almost failed. If you’re looking for a job after graduation, I’d recommend you to find some time and study this course instead. You can’t fail the political classes if you want to do the graduate entrance exam.”
Lu Zhou said humbly, “I understand.”
“Good that you understand,” said Instructor Zhang. He nodded his head and said, “Oh yeah, how come I didn’t see your name on the mathematical model competition sheet? I know that you’re doing your own research, but it’s still worth participating in these valuable national competitions. I still haven’t sent in the sign-up sheet. How about you think about it while I put your name down?”
“I’ve already applied. Professor Tang helped me apply,” said Lu Zhou said with an implicit tone.
“Oh, I get it now,” said Instructor Zhang. As expected, he understood. He nodded his head and smiled, “Then you have to work hard.”
“Thanks,” replied Lu Zhou with a smile.
The noisy students finally calmed down as Instructor Zhang walked back to the podium. His hands were behind his back and he cleared his throat. The meeting continued but no one really listened.
This was too surprising.
The mathematical analysis paper was easy. It was written by an older teacher. The other classes probably also had students who scored full marks. But the advanced algebra paper was written by Professor Tang! Less than thirty students scored above 90 in the entire department! How the hell did you score full marks!
Not to mention, you handed in the paper early!
As for the possibility of cheating, it was simply impossible. So, no one had even thought about it. Not to mention, the invigilator was Dean Lu. The score must have alarmed the department. The school would definitely look over the surveillance tapes.
There were no dead spots for the surveillance cameras. It would be obvious if he cheated, and everyone knew that this paper was definitely written by Lu Zhou himself.
Instructor Zhang saw the students not paying attention to his speech. He muttered something about summer safety issues and the parties for the next semester before dismissing everyone.
The class meeting ended and Lu Zhou was surrounded by a group of people.
“Brother Lu! Can I be your friend?”
“Brother Lu, do you still need a teammate for the mathematical modeling competition? I can dress up as a girl!”
“Brother Lu! I helped you back in military training, can I leech off you next year!”
F*ck me, can you not say stuff that can be misunderstood!
Lu Zhou finally squeezed out of the crowd and ran down the stairs.
Instructor Zhang smiled and looked at the energetic students as he thought, “It is so nice to be young.” He picked up his briefcase and walked away.
Liu Rui put on his backpack quietly. He thought for a bit before walking up to the class leader.
“Leader, can I cancel my application to the mathematical modeling competition?”
“Yeah, if the class guide hasn’t turned in the sign-up sheet,” said Tian Jun. He continued, “Why are you canceling? We’re counting on you.”
Liu Rui forced a smile and did not know what to say.
Originally, he joined the competition because he did not want to lose to others.
His opponent had already become a god in other people’s eyes.
From now on, whenever someone asked about the Class one, 201 dorm room, no one would ask, “Isn’t there a genius student called Liu Rui in your room?”. Instead, it would be, “F*ck, you’re in the same dorm as Lu Zhou!”
The gap between him and Lu Zhou was so big that he did not even know what facial expression to make.
I wanted to get into the national round while he’s already aiming for the first prize.
Liu Rui sighed.
His ambition was shattered in an instant…