Editor(s): Mariabel, PM87, marshmallow
Coming to work is really enjoyable, Tianhe thought. Occasionally talking with his colleagues gave him the feeling that he was living inside Tong Kai’s favorite writer’s—Honoré de Balzac—novel series, “The Human Comedy.” In his colleagues’ eyes, they were all similarly part of the work at Qingsong. As time flew by, the tree leaves on the sidewalk seemed to turn yellow overnight, withering and drifting in the wind.
Pro’s core module upgrade was in progress and was now at 20%. The analysis system had also been gradually established.
Only the last algorithm was missing now. Tianhe had been tortured by that imaginary algorithm for a long time. These algorithms made him feel as though he was suspended in a wave of fog, invisible and untouchable. After breaking through, you couldn’t feel it anywhere, yet it was right by your side.
He had participated in several Shanghai Quant’s fellowship meetings before and found out that the majority of participants were the same, also thirsting after it.
“Five formula guides?” a Quant had said at one of those meetings. “Having one in your possession is already a miracle. Five? Dreaming might be faster.”
Tianhe said, “How about improving it?”
“Very hard,” the members of the Quant murmured one by one, “unless you have a rich financial scholar to help you. However, these people are either working as executives or not in the country; they wouldn’t come as consultants.”
At that time, Tianhe had felt helpless. He could only hope that he would find inspiration while upgrading Pro.
“I suggest you consult Guan Yue,” Pro said. “The probability of solving this problem would go up to 90%.”
Tianhe was hesitant for a while, and he even wrote an email to Guan Yue, hoping that he would spare him some time to meet.
The email’s recipient was Guan Yue. It only contained one phrase: I want to discuss something with you.
But this email remained in his inbox as a draft, never to be sent out.
In late November, the construction of the new system’s foundation was exceptionally smooth, reaching an “astonishing” 65%, and it was getting faster and faster. It would be completed before New Year’s Day.
Guan Yue wasn’t paying him a small salary, and even if he was late, there would be no deductions. To Tianhe, working at home and working at the office was the same. But Aunt Fang would constantly urge Tianhe to go to work. That was the only way Tianhe would be forced to adjust his work and get some rest so that he wouldn’t continuously work for 72 hours and then sleep for a whole day.
The domineering president, Wen Tianhe, and the legend of the twelve Birkins became the number 1 hot topic at Qingsong for nearly two months. Everyone started to embrace their expectations and hoped that Tianhe would once again scatter his wealthy ideas and contact more shop assistants. After all, there were many men who wanted to buy bags for their girlfriends.
After Tong Kai heard about this, he said, “I know! This is called “group buying” right? Mario, help me collect the money and I’ll go. Everybody, stop bothering my emotional advisor!”
The next day, Tong Kai followed the same pattern and told the shop assistant to bring over 24 Birkin bags.
The whole company was speechless.
The bag feast was held during Tuesday’s lunch hour and this unusual behavior was witnessed by Guan Yue. And so another Tuesday passed.
Guan Yue asked Hermes to send over 36 bags.
“Welfare,” Guan Yue said matter-of-factly.
“Using this non-technical quantity stacking game to compare, are you sick in the head?” Tianhe saw scores of Birkin bags lined up behind the sofa, under the sofa, and there was another row of them on the carpet. He couldn’t bear it anymore and thought the scene in front of him looked too vulgar.
Recently, Tong Kai was so busy that he couldn’t get away. During lunchtime, Tianhe was finally able to take a break from coding. He caught his breath and looked at Guan Yue who had suddenly appeared in front of him.
“I didn’t bring your lunch today,” Tianhe said. “Tong Kai went to India for an infringement lawsuit. He hasn’t been back for two days.”
These days, Guan Yue often went out for lunch. Tianhe couldn’t figure out how to ask Aunt Fang to prepare several servings of lunch every day. From his colleagues’ discussions, it seemed that Guan Yue would randomly choose a time to go eat with his blind date. Someone had seen them at the high-end restaurant near the riverside. Only once did Guan Yue choose a different place.
“I told him to go.” Guan Yue looked at his watch, then looked at Tianhe.
They had lived together for 7 years, so Tianhe knew what Guan Yue wanted to say. This action was obvious, Guan Yue wanted to say “let’s go.” Tianhe got up and followed Guan Yue out.
Pro said, “I’m guessing he has something important he wants to discuss with you.”
Tianhe turned to look at Guan Yue. Guan Yue pressed the elevator button.
“Is the courting going smoothly?” Tianhe asked.
Guan Yue was silent.
Tianhe said, “I listened to my colleagues’ gossip. You often go find her for lunch. She’s a very pretty girl.”
Guan Yue didn’t speak, and the two entered the elevator. The people in the elevator kept silent and glanced at them from time to time. After changing elevators and leaving the building, Guan Yue took Tianhe into another building and went up to the 41st floor. It was a Japanese restaurant filled with people waiting for their lunch appointments.
The host brought the two of them inside a private room and put a small golden plate on the room door. “Reserved: Qingsong Capital.”
Tianhe said, “You ordered the eel rice?”
Tianhe and Guan Yue took off their shoes. Guan Yue took off his suit jacket and Tianhe’s sports coat and hung them both up. Then, the two of them sat down.
Tianhe had an ominous feeling, until Guan Yue asked, “What did you want to talk about?”
Pro said, “At 9 that night, you forgot to close your screen and slept on the desk. The email that you didn’t send out was seen by him.”
Tianhe said, “Unsent emails are like words that haven’t been said, both don’t take effect.”
Not saying anything, Guan Yue watched Tianhe.
Tianhe’s pride wouldn’t allow him to ask Guan Yue for help, but the email had already been seen, so there was no use changing his words. Moreover, January 1 was less than a month away.
He was silent for a moment and then said, “Yes, we are in the same boat. I wanted to ask for your help. Technology-related.”
The eel rice was served; Tianhe’s plate had cheese on it.
“Speak,” Guan Yue said coolly.
Guan Yue didn’t understand computers and programs, so Tianhe had to take a tissue and borrow a pen from a waiter to explain the technical problems he’d encountered to him. Guan Yue silently listened along, the expression on his face not looking too good.
“I don’t want to waste your time,” Tianhe said, “but the purpose of writing out the process is to explain it to you first…”
Tianhe flipped open the napkins and scribbled on it with a ballpoint pen. He kept his words small, or else they wouldn’t fit.
When Guan Yue was studying advanced number theory, his head also hurt a lot. Tianhe never understood why a PPE master’s student who could not understand number theory had gone and learned it anyway. But his troubles were increasing day by day and he needed to figure this out. Back when Tianhe had gone to Florence to relax, he was unwittingly pulled towards a sunny cafe with small round tables on the street. He pulled a few napkins and used a ballpoint pen to explain the theories to Guan Yue until sunset, helping him get over this difficult subject.
Tianhe looked down at the napkins. He had written on four large pieces and stacked them together. Guan Yue didn’t look down, staring instead at Tianhe’s eyebrows.
Tianhe explained the whole system’s framework, calculation logic, and etc. to Guan Yue in the ‘simplest’ way. Subconsciously, under the dining table, Tianhe stepped on Guan Yue’s foot.
Tianhe wore white sportswear socks today, while Guan Yue wore black suit socks. In the Japanese restaurant, Tianhe unconsciously stepped on Guan Yue’s foot, just like he’d done many times before, when they hung out in the garden of his London home, immersed in conversation. With this, he felt a familiar sense of intimacy well up within him.
Pro said, “Notice his expression, Tianhe.”
Tianhe looked up with a puzzled expression. Guan Yue immediately withdrew his foot and said, “I understand.”
“Give me a bit of time. I still have other matters to attend to. I’ll be going first,” Guan Yue said as he got up to leave.
Tianhe didn’t know what happened and looked blankly at Guan Yue’s retreating back.
“Your coat!” Tianhe shouted but Guan Yue had already left.
Tianhe said, “Actually, I already had some ideas about the formula guide. I just wanted to ask him about some constants and variables. Recently, this guy really is… Pro, what did you want to say just now?”
“Oh,” Pro said, “I noticed that he was a bit upset, so I wanted to remind you to mind his expression.”
Tianhe said, “He’s probably busy with his blind date.”
Pro said, “He’s quite troubled. He thought that you had wanted to find him to get back together. If you had opened your mouth and said even one word about not wanting him to get married, he would have turned around and run towards….”
Tianhe said, “Pro, don’t suddenly switch to romance novel mode. I always thought that if you wanted to marry someone, you needed to hear the opinions of others to make up your mind so that in this life you won’t be greedy for freedom.”
“You are not someone else,” Pro said, “you are different from others. You’re not like anyone else.”
Tianhe casually replied, “Are you hinting at something? Back then when I decided to be with him, I didn’t ask for anyone else’s opinion.”
Tianhe started eating his eel rice while thinking about his own question. That afternoon, Mario interrupted his programming and said meaningfully, “Chairman Guan has requested to meet with you.”
In the office, Guan Yue took out the projector and turned on the webcam. He projected a PPT, directing it at the wall, and waited patiently for Tianhe.
“Wait a moment.” Tianhe went to get his computer.
Pro said, “He has calmed down.”
“He’s always been calm,” Tianhe casually replied. “I really didn’t think that he would have the patience to give me lessons in the office.”
Tianhe went in and pushed his swivel chair over to Guan Yue’s side. Guan Yue took his phone and turned on the Do Not Disturb feature. He then turned his phone over and moved his finger on the trackpad, dragging the PPT into position.
“When the way of thinking is blocked by the road of science,” Guan Yue said seriously, not looking at Tianhe but staring at the projection on the wall, “we might as well try to put aside the ideas of computational science and financial economics. From the perspective of historical events and social changes, the ancient discipline of macroeconomics is reorganized in order to find the original model…”
“Boss,” Tianhe said, “uh, actually, I already have some ideas…”
Guan Yue said, “If you don’t want to listen, then get out. I still have things to do this afternoon.”
“Don’t.” Tianhe helplessly opened his notebook and said, “I just don’t want to waste your precious time.”
Sunlight shone through the floor-to-ceiling windows and Tianhe was pulled back into the past. Midsummer in Oxford was covered with lush greenery and the shadows of trees rustling. The two of them were wearing couple shirts. Tianhe was resting against a large tree, while Guan Yue was laying in Tianhe’s arms, enjoying the bright summer sunshine.
In his final year of his master’s degree, before his thesis defense, Guan Yue practically had no classes. Tianhe often brought his books to Oxford with the intention of finding Guan Yue while also declaring his ownership of this person and threatening all the British guys and girls who intended to approach him.
After all, before confirming his relationship with Guan Yue, he had introduced Tianhe to his classmates as his “brother.” Now that the two had become lovers, Tianhe, of course, had reasons to defend his rights. His methods of defending included, but were not limited to, checking Guan Yue’s personal relationships, asking him questions, following him, giving him attitude, and picking fights with him on purpose.
In Guan Yue’s life, the one person he could not provoke was Tianhe, or else he would be damned.
Tianhe could see that Guan Yue was very fond of this couple set and especially fond in front of his new lover. The more Tianhe would flare up with jealousy, the more Guan Yue showed that he loved him. Although Guan Yue would be driven to the point of laughing to tears, he still patiently explained to Tianhe every time.
However, there was one contradiction Guan Yue would always fight back against. It was on the issue of politics and economics. Tianhe was fine with not arguing, but every time they fought, he would need to have the last word. In the politics and economics field, Guan Yue always kept a strong foothold. Tianhe liked to attack Guan Yue unintentionally as if every time he beat him mentally, Guan Yue’s level of excellence would be reduced, so Tianhe would have an absolute sense of security and no longer have to worry about his own boyfriend being stolen from him.
It was clear that Guan Yue wasn’t as superior as you would think, so why did people fall for him one by one?
The two of them quarreled again under the sun that day. The reason was that Tianhe had turned over a few pages of “Agricultural Involution” that Guan Yue had borrowed from the teaching assistant and found that the latter had written a few love poems in the blank spaces of the book.
This new teaching assistant liked to use his authority to his advantage and sent an email to Guan Yue in the middle of the night. As Guan Yue’s thesis defense approached, he didn’t dare shut off his phone. The assistant had continued their conversation until 1 am last night while the two were still fighting in bed. So the fight only lasted longer and became unstoppable.
Guan Yue said, “I really didn’t know! I haven’t even read that page yet!”
Tianhe said, “How could you not have seen it? I’m going to go meet that teaching assistant.”
Guan Yue said, “Let me solve it myself, otherwise I will be the laughing stock of the whole department. Can you not make unjustified trouble?”
Tianhe casually walked into the building, wearing an unhappy expression on his face. The light was dim and Guan Yue’s peers were looking at them with curiosity as they watched them walk past. Guan Yue wanted to reach out and grab Tianhe, but Tianhe would always throw him off. While passing around a corner, Guan Yue reached out to hug him, but Tianhe drifted sideways, causing Guan Yue to hug empty space.
Guan Yue said patiently, “I have my defense tomorrow, give me some face.”
Tianhe said, “I suggest we change to English to argue so that everyone can hear clearly.”
Guan Yue was a person who cared about his pride a lot, so he said humbly, “Don’t be like this, baby.”
Tianhe walked into the classroom. There were two people in the classroom, one of whom was the teaching assistant and the other was Guan Yue’s classmate. Tianhe had wanted to go up to talk to him, but Guan Yue pressed down on his shoulder and made him sit on the seat.
Tianhe coldly looked at Guan Yue.
“Hey, Guan. Is this your brother?”
The teaching assistant was a blonde British boy. As soon as Tianhe appeared, a peculiar expression appeared on the teaching assistant’s face. Tianhe immediately knew at a glance that he had troubles in his heart.
Tianhe waved to the teaching assistant and said, “Hey.”
Guan Yue flipped the book in his hand to the appropriate page, put it in front of the teaching assistant, and said in English, “You wrote this?”
The teaching assistant smiled and didn’t say anything. He closed the book as the atmosphere in the classroom became awkward. Guan Yue approached him and said quietly, “Don’t email me in the middle of the night regarding things that are not relevant to the thesis. Take your book if you don’t want to be reported.” He then said, even quieter so that only he and the teaching assistant could hear, “We already set a wedding date, so don’t cause any more misunderstandings between us.”
The assistant’s expression changed. He closed the book he was holding and, with a glance at Guan Yue, left the classroom with the other student.
Sunlight shone through the windows into the classroom. Reflected on the blackboard was the information that the professor had discussed half an hour ago. Tianhe sat behind a desk and looked at the blackboard coldly. Guan Yue sat on the desk in front of Tianhe, turned his body, and said as he looked at Tianhe. “Are you satisfied?”
“What did you say at the end?” Tianhe asked suspiciously, clearly showing that he was not ready to forgive Guan Yue.
Guan Yue said, “Don’t be overly suspicious of everything.”
Tianhe said, “If you didn’t say that last line so suspiciously, then I wouldn’t be suspicious!”
Guan Yue, “…..”
“Whatever.” Tianhe didn’t want to disturb Guan Yue anymore. He took his phone and blocked the assistant’s number.
“To me, this is a big matter in my life,” Guan Yue said.
Guan Yue spread his hands and said seriously, “Asking for your hand in marriage.”
Tianhe was speechless. “Doesn’t this count as me forcing the marriage? That’s so awkward!”
Guan Yue smiled and suddenly reached out to pinch Tianhe’s face. A leaf flew in from the window and landed on the table.
Guan Yue said indifferently, “I thought that if I talked about marriage, you would be happy.”
Guan Yue said again, “You’ve thought about marriage with me for a long time, right?”
Tianhe was trying to ridicule Guan Yue a little, but Guan Yue leaned forward from the seat in front of him and kissed Tianhe on the lips. At that moment, all of Tianhe’s anger dissolved.
Tianhe didn’t want to continue on about this topic and could only say with dissatisfaction, “I didn’t really think about sharing my life with you.”
Guan Yue, “Your words aren’t matching with what’s in your heart again. Your reason for coming into this world was to spend your life with me.”
Tianhe diverged from the topic by looking down and saying, “This used to be Shelley’s table.”
On the table, a beautiful line of writing had been left by a fountain pen, protected by a plastic layer. It was a poem written by Shelley.
“Only your glory can be like the mist that flows over the mountains.”
There was another line underneath: “This seat once belonged to the immortal soul who wrote such a poem.”
“Do you want to hear my thesis defense?” Guan Yue suddenly said.
Tianhe replied, “If you beg me, I’ll exhort all my efforts to listen for a bit.”
Guan Yue then got up, walked to the blackboard, looked at Tianhe, and began his defense on the topic of “stagnation.” He had read his paper before and had to admit that Guan Yue’s professional level was outstanding. He listened carefully, sitting on Shelley’s seat and watching Guan Yue on the podium.
Just like he had that evening all those years ago, Guan Yue rolled up his sleeves, put his hands in his pockets, and stood in front of the projection screen. Then, with an indifferent air, he went on to explain what he had sorted out and what he thought could be used by Tianhe.
Gradually, the past and present seemed to blend together. Tianhe couldn’t help but think of that evening from four years ago at Oxford, at Guan Yue’s thesis defense rehearsal.
In the office, Guan Yue finished speaking. He picked up a glass of water, took a sip, and looked at Tianhe.
“The ‘stagnation’ mathematical model…” Tianhe murmured.
This was the reason why Guan Yue let Tianhe teach him the theory of numbers, combining the effect of involution with corporate performance, and using mathematical models to describe the macro…
Tianhe immediately got up, and Guan Yue seemed to know what he was going to do. When he reached his desk, he pressed the remote control, and Tianhe rushed out like a gust of wind.
Pro said, “Victory is close, it’s a high probability.”
Tianhe didn’t reply to Pro. He returned to his own space, opened his notebook, and started modifying his formula. Qingsong had already closed for the day. Five minutes later, Guan Yue left his office. He arrived at the water dispenser and placed a cup of coffee on the table. With one hand on the desk and the other on the back of Tianhe’s chair, he watched him open the tablet and quickly rewrite the formula.
“I know this constant.” Guan Yue pointed at the screen and looked down at Tianhe again. “If you don’t mind…”
Tianhe didn’t even notice that he had come and leaned over him. When he looked up, he almost kissed him. He was startled and said, “Hey! Don’t scare me!”
Tianhe moved away from Guan Yue a bit, maintaining a safe distance. He said angrily, “Chairman Guan, this action is too inappropriate! You interrupted my thinking! This isn’t what a CEO should be doing!”
Guan Yue also noticed that he had overstepped a boundary with Tianhe, so he could only turn around and leave.
Pro said, “Should I do a comparison search?”
Fortunately, Tianhe recovered his thoughts. It only took ten minutes to modify all the formulas. The characters that appeared and disappeared on the screen were rearranged as if it was under the hands of a magician.
Tianhe said, “No need, just run it again. I altered the original foundation.”
Tianhe looked at the screen nervously. Pro started to involve himself to assist in the new calculation model.
Pro said, “I know you must be very nervous…”
Tianhe said, “Yes, Bach comes with an equal temperament, this is his pinnacle.”
Immersed in Bach’s music, Pro said, “I just thought that what Guan Yue explained to you just now wouldn’t be enough to motivate you to start modifying the formula guide.”
Tianhe said, “It’s because I suddenly remembered Guan Yue’s master thesis. At that time, his economic theory research was more focused on the essence. Now, he pays too much attention to practicality and has lost the intellectual temperament to explore the truth and essence….”
To be precise, it was the moment when this afternoon and the afternoon from many years ago merged that gave Tianhe great inspiration. During the waiting time, he told Pro about Guan Yue’s defense during dusk.
Pro said, “I’m more concerned about what came after.”
Tianhe was confused, “After?”
After Tianhe finished listening to the contents of Guan Yue’s thesis defense, he said, “You’re also a genius.”
Guan Yue washed his hands and the two of them left Oxford together at dusk.
“This is the first time you approved of me,” Guan Yue said. “If you had said any additional words of worship, I’m afraid I wouldn’t be able to notice the word ‘also’.”
Tianhe remembered that Guan Yue’s hands that day were very warm because before holding him, Guan Yue had warmed up his hands. The day after, Guan Yue got up early and kissed Tianhe before going to his thesis defense. When Tianhe went to Oxford after waking up, it just so happened to be Guan Yue’s turn to defend his thesis. Tianhe had quietly walked into the classroom through the backdoor as Guan Yue got on stage.
The Guan Yue that day was radiant and had an air of arrogance. He seemed gentle and elegant, only the word ‘prince’ could describe him.
After it ended, the professor and the teaching assistant talked with Guan Yue. Guan Yue had listened carefully, obeyed the rules, and was polite.
“Your defense is over?” Tianhe said, with his hands in his trench coat pockets. “You didn’t mess up, did you? I just came.”
“You didn’t see it?”
Tianhe said regretfully, “Sorry, I overslept.”
Guan Yue said, “Then that person I saw in the back row was an, ah, illusion.”
Tianhe smiled and said, “Your condition today doesn’t seem to be so well, acting so foolishly.”
“I guess it’s A,” Guan Yue said. “Your sarcasm has failed again.”
Tianhe and Guan Yue held hands and walked through Oxford.
“Then I’ll give you the reward in advance.” Tianhe took out the watch from the pocket of his trench coat and said, “The last one in the world.”
Guan Yue, “…..”
Guan Yue looked at Tianhe in disbelief. Tianhe smiled and put Roger Dolby’s “Round Table Knight” in Guan Yue’s hands. There were only 28 watches of this kind in the world. Two months ago, Guan Yue and Tian He went to Christie’s spring auction. At that time, Guan Yue hesitated for a long time but still didn’t purchase it. The reason was: this watch really was too expensive. Although the release price was only two million yuan, several rounds of price increases at the auction made it become a rather uneconomical accessory.
Tianhe thought about it for a long time. He found his uncle and asked to meet with him. He bought it from an Austrian Minister of General Affairs. This watch used up all of Tianhe’s allowance for a year and the patent fees for several programs he had designed. It was said that when Wen Tianyue heard about this matter, his eyes turned black on the spot and he lost his breath; his hatred towards Guan Yue rose by 500k points.
“What’s with the ugly crying?” Tianhe said casually. “It’s just wearing a Russian wheel on the wrist. I don’t know where your interest for Roger Dolby comes from… but you like it, so that’s all that matters. ”
Tianhe had wanted to turn around, but Guan Yue said, “Wait.”
Tianhe turned his head and looked at Guan Yue with a puzzled expression, just like he did when they met all those years ago.
Tianhe’s expression was bright as day, and the corners of his lips were lifted upwards as if he was looking for a way to tease him with a few jokes.
“Call me gege again, just like you used to when you were younger,” Guan Yue said.
“I’m your guardian.”
Tianhe said, “I’m already 19 years old, I’m not scared of you anymore. You think you can beat me?”
Guan Yue looked at Tianhe stubbornly. Tianhe couldn’t guess what Guan Yue was thinking, his brain must have been caught by the classroom door.
“No,” Tianhe said, knowing that things would get awkward.
Guan Yue was still persisting.
Tianhe also started to persist. That term hadn’t been used for a long time. He turned around and walked away, but Guan Yue was still standing in the same place. The meaning was obvious, if you don’t call me gege, I won’t move.
Tianhe turned his body under the tree.
“Hey, gege,” Tianhe said with a bored expression to Guan Yue.
This phrase was like a power switch, guiding Guan Yue to walk towards him.
“Because starting from today, the meaning of this phrase will change to….”
Tianhe turned around and started to run, so Guan Yue yelled, “Wait! Listen to me finish! Where are you going?!”
Tianhe flew across the fence, scaring a group of pigeons. Guan Yue ran across the road and caught him, but Tianhe took off his coat like a bull and aggressively slipped past Guan Yue’s body. He grabbed a school bicycle, sat on it, and pedaled away.
“Don’t carelessly run around!” Guan Yue said angrily, “You stubborn child!”
The two rode their bicycles through Oxford. Tianhe pedaled to weird places, bumping along Guan Yue. However, Guan Yue was riding faster than him. A gust of wind rushed over and, with his long legs stretched out like a horse’s, he drifted the bike and stopped in front of Tianhe.
Tianhe almost collided with Guan Yue. He had wanted to continue running, but Guan Yue grabbed him and hugged him as they slid down the hillside. Tianhe loudly shouted, but Guan Yue still hugged him and kissed him.
Tianhe hugged his neck as they kissed under the sun of graduation season.
When they separated, Guan Yue stared at Tianhe as if he couldn’t bear to look away for even a second.
Guan Yue also took out a box from his pocket and opened it, motioning it towards him. Inside was an old gold ring with a few irregular stones.
Guan Yue said seriously, “To me, marriage is a huge matter in my life. I still haven’t decided where and when I should propose to you.”
Tianhe said, “I knew that one day you would definitely pull out a ring.”
Guan Yue put the ring on Tianhe’s finger and said, “Think of it as a pre-engagement engagement, as a contract of my intent.”
Tianhe laughed. The ring was very very old. It was worn by Guan Yue’s grandma seventy years ago. The ring was surrounded with seven tourmaline stones because every 10 years that Guan Yue’s grandparents were together, his grandpa would take it to a craftsman to add a stone onto it.
At the age of twenty, he spent money to redeem a 14-year-old girl who was displaced during the famine and gave her a small gold thimble. The girl entered the Guan family and later became his wife until the eighth decade when they were separated by death.
Before Grandma died, Grandpa slid the ring off his finger with great reluctance and handed it over to Guan Yue. The intention was obvious.
Tianhe had watched Guan Yue receive it, but he only simply put it away. He didn’t give it to him in front of the old man. So Tianhe only looked at it sourly as if it was thimble, but now, this “pre-engagement engagement” ring was finally in his hands.
“I still haven’t saved enough for the first stone yet.” Tianhe lifted the ring and looked at it under the sunlight.
Guan Yue told Tianhe that he had privately looked for someone to add a diamond to the ring. Since the year they’d met when he was young, it was now the fifteenth year.
Tianhe said, “This doesn’t count.”
Guan Yue said in an indisputable tone, “If I say it counts, then it counts.”
Pro said, “But you don’t attach importance to the ring at all. At least, you don’t wear it.”
Tianhe said, “Because I’m always worrying, I am afraid that the gems will fall off. I dare not wear it all the time and would rather put it away.”
Pro said, “This ring has been worn for 70 years already without falling apart, it’s very durable.”
Tianhe said, “Some things look durable, but they always fall apart at the most unexpected time, just like love. I have to find time to return it to him. Pro, you’re still not done testing?”
Pro said, “I finished testing it for a while already.”
“The result?” Tianhe asked, as he nervously sat up and looked at the screen.”
Pro said, “I can’t evaluate it, but I think that the person who can is already back.”
Guan Yue had come back with two meal boxes in hand. He looked at the data the system had spat out, turned around, and put the boxes in the microwave. It was dinner sent over by Aunt Fang.
Tianhe looked forward to Guan Yue’s words of approval, but Guan Yue only stood in front of the microwave and looked down at the Round Table Knight on his wrist: three minutes before the NASDAQ opened.
The microwave ‘dinged’ and Guan Yue placed one of the meal boxes on Tianhe’s desk. His brows twistedly slightly and he stared at the screen.
“If it’s not words of approval then don’t say it,” Tianhe said helplessly. “Don’t attack my self-confidence.”
“Genius,” Guan Yue said, as he took his meal box and went back into his office.
Tianhe jerked upright. Fingers trembling slightly, he tapped the opening quote and then took a deep breath.
Pro said, “Tianhe, you really are a genius.”
This chapter is migrated and/or formatted by our fellow chicken enthusiast(s), Joyce, Cat and Caro.