Tea Leaves and White Pearls

Study Time, Treats, and Wondering

Match Nineteen: Study Time, Treats, and Wondering:


Tina, Mei, Qun, and I were studying on Saturday morning. Final exams were coming up and this would determine graduation or repeating. Qun and I were serious to nail this; Tina and Mei… not so much. I glanced to my right and left. If I didn't sit between them, Tina and Mei would try to kill each other.

"Guys," I said with a sigh, "Could you try to get along long enough to get through this?" Mei snorted at my request.

"I'm fine," she said, "Keep that bitch away from me."

"I was going to say the same thing," Tina hissed. I dropped my head and shook it.

"Why are you even here with us?" my American friend asked, "You don't even go to the same school as us!" Mei sat back and snorted.

"I figured why not?" she said, "We're all pretty much taking the same exam."

"Okay," I cut in, "Let's just focus back on the books." My two hostile friends went quiet and returned to their study books.

"Thank you," I said.

"Hey Ju," Qun spoke up, "Did I do this right?"

"Let me see," I said. She slid her history workbook across the low table over my way and I caught with my fingertips. I twirled to read the calligraphy. I picked up my history book and compared the text.

"I think you have the date wrong in the third paragraph here," I said. Qun's face dropped.

"What?" she asked.

"Look here," I said. Qun looked where I was pointing in the textbook.

"Oh!" she said, "I guess I wrote that character backwards."

"It's okay," I said. Suddenly, a knock came on the door. We looked to see Kee poked his head in the door.

"Hey ladies," he said, "Brought you some treats."

"Thanks," I said, "Set it at the door."

"Sure," he replied. Kee left us the tray of mini-dumplings and walked away. Tina turned to me with a smile on her face.

"Oh, look at you, miss clan leader," she said.

"What?" I asked, "Kee's always brought us snacks and food when I do my homework."

"Yep," Mei said, "He doesn't want us to study on an empty stomach."

"Makes sense," Qun said. Tina thought about that and nodded.

"Guess you're right," she said. The second half of studying went along much better than the beginning. As we went over our notes for that final exam, my mind wondered back to my own future. I hadn't even applied for college yet, but I'm still looking. The clan looked pretty good right now. Kee just got accepted into his first college choice thing morning. Chih still waited on his, but I'm still he'll be fine. Mei's already been looking for her choice in designer schools against her mother's wishes.

"Anything to get my goals and piss off that old bitch at the same time," she told me on numerous occasions. I just smiled and waved her off; anything that floats her boat, I guess. Yet, where exactly does that leave me with other than Yao and the clan?


"Ju?" I heard someone ask on the outside, "Hellooooo?" I looked up to see Tina just inches away from my face. I let off a small squeak and backed up against the wall.

"What?" I asked.

"Why are you zoned out for?" she asked, "We still have to check your work next." It took me a little bit to get what she was saying.

"Oh…" I said, "Sure, here." I shoved over my workbook. I'll work out my stance with Yao later.

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