Chapter 39 Warm Jade
Ji Huaisi’s violin sound was not the same as the side of himself he revealed. Even though it was covered with a soft shell, every note was mixed with decisiveness and momentum from the inside out.
People who didn’t understand music would still be as fascinated as Jian Chi. It was not the superb violin skills that brought him into the music world, but Ji Huaisi who had injected all his emotions.
In a trance, Jian Chi felt that he was sitting in the center of the auditorium of the Villiger Concert Hall, the only audience member in the huge concert hall. Ji Huaisi was on the stage standing under the spotlight, his slender shadow stretched very long. With his half-dropped eyes, his eyelashes twitching occasionally with the raised tone, he seemed to be more dazzling than the lights on the stage. At the end of the song, the bow slowly stopped in mid-air. Ji Huaisi turned his eyes to Jian Chi in the auditorium, raised a smile, put his hand on his chest, and bent over to give an elegant curtain call.
Jian Chi came back to his senses after a while and clapped his hands.
Ji Huaisi laughed out loud, lowered his arms, and put the violin gently into the violin case on the table, “Do you like this piece?”
“Very nice,” Jian Chi felt a little annoyed at his poor vocabulary, and then asked, “What’s the name of this song?”
“Schubert’s Serenade,” Ji Huaisi turned around, with a faint smile in his eyes, “you can’t play a tune that is too loud at night, it’s not good for others rest. If you want to listen to other tunes, I can go back and try to learn.”
Jian Chi shook his head, “I don’t understand music, every song you play sounds good.”
“Hearing your words, it seems I have completed my goal tonight.”
“You have to pass your birthday happily, don’t you?” Ji Huaisi’s voice was gurgling and delicate like running water, “I rarely see you smiling. Jian Chi, you actually look good when you smile. You should smile more.”
Hearing this compliment from a same-sex mouth seemed a little weird, but Ji Huaisi’s expression and tone were all naturally gentle and impeccable. With the music that just ended, and the faint wisps of moonlight outside the window, Jian Chi couldn’t help but relax. He gave Ji Huaisi a faint and genuine smile, “Thank you, I’m very happy.”
He rarely smiled, not because he didn’t like it, but because he didn’t know who to smile at and how to smile. During the time when he was ostracized, Jian Chi also tried to show kindness to the people around him, but maybe he used the wrong muscle in the wrong place and he heard others critiquing him behind his back saying ‘he smiled like a silly person’, so he didn’t smile much anymore. Maybe he also thought that he looked silly when smiling.
This was the first time someone said to him, “You look good when you smile.” After the silence, a touch of sourness spread in his heart, which was suppressed by Jian Chi without showing any strangeness on his face. Ji Huaisi seemed to have just pulled back his thoughts from the trance just now. He pursed his lips and moved forwards, a deep meaning mixed in his eyes, and looked at Jian Chi, “I knew you would like it.”
The atmosphere seemed to breed a different feeling in the silence. Before Jian Chi could react, Ji Huaisi interrupted the strangeness with a slow voice: “I wanted to prepare a little more, but it hasn’t been long since you caught a cold. Rest early. Shuting has already told me what happened that day. Don’t worry, I will have Shao Hang apologize to you face to face, this time he has gone too far.”
The temperature in the last few sentences has obviously lowered a little, and Jian Chi’s rationality overshadowed the expression just now, and his eyebrows subconsciously twitched, “No, I don’t need an apology, I don’t want to see him.”
What can an apology change? Do people like Shao Hang really realize the mistakes they made?
Jian Chi thought that it was more realistic to expect Zhang Yang to be ranked first than to hear Shao Hang’s heartfelt apology.
Ji Huaisi was quiet for a while, becoming more thoughtful and deep, but subtle changes were not obvious in the darkness. His voice still carried a familiar gentleness: “What happened that day?”
“It’s nothing,” Jian Chi closed his eyes. He found that his voice was too cold, and he calmed down, “it’s really nothing, it’s just a prank. Thank you for preparing these for me, I’m very happy with my birthday tonight.”
Now asking Ji Huaisi why he knew about his birthday would be nonsense. Jian Chi felt that he had become transparent in front of Ji Huaisi, which sounded to be a terrible thing, but Ji Huaisi’s attitude never gave him such a feeling, it was more of a natural showing of respect and affection, letting him ignore the rest involuntarily.
Ji Huaisi didn’t ask, he never forced Jian Chi to say things he didn’t want to say; maybe it was out of his gentlemanliness in his nature, or maybe he always had other ways to know the answer. He took out a small wooden box from his arms. When he came to Jian Chi, he smiled and handed it to him, “I hope you will like this gift.”
Jian Chi was slightly startled when he saw the wooden box, and his voice was a little tight: “Isn’t the music the gift?”
“Is there a rule that only one gift can be given?” Ji Huaisi said, “Open it and take a look.”
Jian Chi hesitated for a while, then took it. The small wooden box was very heavy in the palm of his hand. He opened the lock, saw the contents clearly, and took a breath.
The small round jade pendant was wrapped by a black rope into a pendant, as clear as a cyan jade mirror. The whole surface was engraved with delicate patterns, like a lifelike blooming flower floating in the void, conveying the slightest coolness through his palm. Jian Chi heard Ji Huaisi’s voice ringing in his ears: “It’s carved with gardenias.”
Jian Chi raised his head. After the surprise faded, he felt a little heavy. He closed the box and put it back in Ji Huaisi’s hands. “This gift is too expensive, I can’t accept it. The few songs just now are enough.”
Ji Huaisi seemed to have expected his reaction. He took out the jade pendant from the wooden box, held his shoulder before he stepped back, and put it on with his own hands. His eyes seemed to have a brighter color, and he said slowly : “The reason why a gift is a gift is that there is no such thing as preciousness. The most important part is that you like it. I have a lot of jade like this in my house. When I saw this one and thought it was suitable for you, I brought it from home. Facts have proved that my vision is correct.”
After hearing that the gift was not bought, Jian Chi’s guilt weakened a little. He hesitantly touched the slightly hot jade on his chest. Although he didn’t understand these, just from the color texture and the engraving on it, the price must be high.
This may not be much to Ji Huaisi, just an ordinary accessory, but to Jian Chi, it was worthy of the word ‘precious’. He hadn’t received a birthday gift since he was eight years old. Jian Chengchao was a father who didn’t understand surprises. No matter if it was his birthday or Jian Chi’s birthday, he would only go out to eat. If he was lucky enough to pass by a cake shop, he would buy a small piece of cake. If not, they can forget it.
This was the first time that Jian Chi had received such a serious gift. He wanted to refuse, but he didn’t know what to say to the sincere eyes of Ji Huaisi when he heard Ji Huaisi say before him, “Wait until my birthday, you can give me a gift in return. Will you accept it in this case?”
Jian Chi was a little nervous, “I can’t come up with such a good gift.”
“As I said just now, the most important thing in gifts is the thought,” Ji Huaisi looked at him, his smile covered with a deep tenderness under the moonlight, “I will be very happy with whatever you give me, so now I hope you too can be happy.”
Lying on his bed in the dorm room at night, Jian Chi couldn’t help but lift up the jade on his chest and put it in front of his eyes to look carefully. He didn’t know if Ji Huaisi had specially learned tricks to deceive people. In the end, he didn’t even let him think ‘not good’ in his mind for fear of being seen through by Ji Huaisi, and then him revealing a disappointed expression.
Since it has been accepted with enthusiasm, there is no chance to return it. Jian Chi could only think about the return gift to Ji Huaisi next time, and suddenly remembered after a whole night that he still didn’t know Ji Huaisi’s birthday.
Shao Hang did not appear in the literature club in the afternoon, and Bai Shuyun also disappeared. Jian Chi rarely had a class peacefully. He had made an appointment to go to the library with Zhang Yang to review next week’s chemistry exam, but unexpectedly, there was a person beside Zhang Yang.
“Wen Chuan followed me when he heard that I was going to the library,” Zhang Yang touched his head hesitantly, “It shouldn’t be a problem with more people, right?”
Jian Chi met Wen Chuan’s cold but clear gaze, remembering that he promised to teach him last time, he nodded, “Let’s go over together then.”
Zhang Yang came over and hooked Jian Chi’s shoulder carelessly. Without saying a few words, his sharp eyes caught a glimpse of the jade pendant on his chest, and he called out strangely, “When did you carry a jade pendant? The color is quite beautiful.”
Jian Chi looked down and found that the jade pendant was exposed at some point. He put it back under the collar, and coughed lightly, “It was given by someone.”
“Given?” Zhang Yang was even more curious, “Who would give such an expensive gift?”
Wen Chuan, who had not said a word, said abruptly, “Is it Ji Huaisi?”
Jian Chi was stunned for a moment. Zhang Yang punched and slapped his palm, and then looked at Jian Chi in disbelief: “The museum at the vice president’s house seems to have collected a lot of antique jade, it won’t really be the vice president who gave it to you, right?”
Hearing the word ‘museum’, Jian Chi was more than stunned. He suspected that he had heard it wrong, “…Does Ji Huaisi’s family run a museum?”
As soon as his voice fell, Zhang Yang couldn’t help laughing, “How is it possible? The business of the vice president’s house is mainly in the antiques area, and the museum is private in his own home. The vice president’s father is very famous in calligraphy. A single character can go for more than a million, and the museum seems to have been around for many years, the things in it may be worth a fortune.” The tone was envious and one of admiration.
Jian Chi felt that the small jade pendant on his chest gained weight, pulling his neck down.
Ji Huaisi only said that it was brought from home, but whether it was an ordinary jade pendant or an antique, Jian Chi was not sure. His ordinary cognition was completely useless here. The thinking of most people in the school was far beyond the scope of ‘ordinary people’. Jian Chi could only silently pray that Ji Huaisi would not be so irrational and just used any antique to hand it over to him.
Wen Chuan’s slightly deep voice pulled Jian Chi out of his wild thoughts: “Why did he give you something?”
Jian Chi reacted two seconds later, “Yesterday was my birthday.”
“What? It was your birthday yesterday?”
Zhang Yang slammed on the brakes, grabbed Jian Chi’s neck and shook it vigorously, “Why didn’t you tell me it was your birthday? Aren’t we brothers! It’s over, the time has passed, what gift do you want? I’ll make it up to you quickly..”
Jian Chi was a little dizzy from being shaken, and just as he was about to answer, Wen Chuan lifted the hand on his shoulder and took it down, doing it very naturally. After a while, Jian Chi remembered what he wanted to say: “Actually, it’s just my birthday, so there’s no need to give gifts.”
“No, the vice president has given one, so how can I not give one?” Zhang Yang shouted, “You helped me study for so long, I haven’t thanked you yet, it’s just right, the gift is on me. Now, don’t refuse!”
When Jian Chi heard Zhang Yang’s tone, he knew he couldn’t get away, so he could only smile helplessly, “Just keep it simple, thank you.”
“Don’t be so polite.”
Before walking into the library, Wen Chuan, who had been quiet behind him, suddenly said, “Happy birthday.”
Jian Chi realized that he was talking to himself, turned around and said ‘thank you’. He learned the lesson from Zhang Yang before, and spoke before Wen Chuan said the next sentence: “It’s fine with this sentence, don’t give any gifts.”
Wen Chuan didn’t answer, an inconspicuous dark look passed for a moment, then the hand holding the textbook seemed to tighten a little. After a while, he made a low ‘Mm’.
Wen Chuan: I have to work hard to make money
Ji Huaisi: ^_^