Translator: hoenimochi, Rin Editor: Slumber
Actually, it was not accurate to say that the thing was a “love letter”, it should be more like a “diary”.
The content inside was only about Shen Wenqiu and nothing else.
Lu Yong didn’t have the habit of writing a diary before. He wrote a lot of experimental record manuals, but he couldn’t analyse the reason why he did that. As if he was inspired, from the moment he met Shen Wenqiu, he recorded it in his notebook that night for some reason:
Year 200x, August 1, Sunny.
On the way to reporting to the dormitory, our family vehicle collided with a car. The boy in the car was so beautiful, he asked me if I was suffering from heatstroke and gave me a bottle of iced Coke. Later, when I got to school, I found that we were classmates, and we also lived in the same dormitory.
He looked pampered, and I thought I needed to take care of him more.
It was from this day onwards.
When there was something he cared about in Shen Wenqiu, he couldn’t help but secretly record it.
He was more attentive than any experimental research he did. Research was usually driven by interest, but it wasn’t for what he did about Shen Wenqiu. It was driven by love, just like instinct. Love was different from interest. Interest needed to be satisfied by achievements. Love was just love. Looking at him a few more times and getting to know him a little more was enough to make Lu Yong feel happy.
He couldn’t help himself wanting to write it down and record it.
Liking was his own business. He was eager to get a response, but even if he didn’t get one, it was within his expectation.
He wrote everything down.
However, he was originally a science geek with poor writing skills. Usually, the content was just a straightforward record.
The things written in the notebook were all boring things: for example, Shen Wenqiu bought a new pair of shoes, and they were of a certain brand. It was the new design and it seemed that Shen Wenqiu liked this brand; for example, Shen Wenqiu ate in the cafeteria today. He liked braised eggplant very much, so he would go to ask Uncle Chef if he had any cooking tips.
Sometimes there were some outrageous records, such as Shen Wenqiu who played a lot of basketball in the autumn and summer, got a little tan, and had obvious tan lines when he changed his clothes in the dormitory.
Lu Yong wrote: The untanned skin under his clothes was so white that my heart kept pounding, and I felt embarrassed to look at it. But in the evening, Xiao Baa took a bath and even asked me to rub his back. His skin was so tender. I rubbed it a little harder and it turned red, and when I didn’t scrub it hard enough, he complained it wasn’t washed clean enough.
Final summary: Why do I blush at my good friend who is also a boy? Am I a pervert?
Lu Yong recorded all kinds of trivial things in detail for two and a half years.
After finishing the first notebook, he happened to get a photo of Shen Wenqiu. Lu Yong liked it very much. Lu Yong liked it very much—no matter how he put it, he felt that it was not valued enough.
When he wrote down the first line of words, he was very casual and didn’t use a beautiful notebook. Later, no matter how he looked at it, he felt that it was not worthy of Shen Wenqiu.
So, Lu Yong looked up a book on binding techniques in the library, read it for three days, and decided to make a blank notebook personally. He removed the originally shabby outer cover, took only the inner pages, took a pile of white paper of the same size, calculated the number of days in high school, put the papers together, and spent several months binding it by hand into a brand new, unique notebook.
A sewing method was used to tie the knot, and the multi-layer hard leather was used for framing.
Then a cloth book jacket was made and carefully wrapped around the outside.
Looking back now, it was done very roughly, mainly because there were experiments to be done during the weekend and he also had to avoid Shen Wenqiu, so he did it very slowly.
The photo with the plastic seal was firmly affixed to the last page of the photo.
At first, he was still brave enough to take the notebook to school, but later he didn’t dare to do it anymore.
He knew that Shen Wenqiu was a good boy who respected the privacy of others, but he felt frightened when Shen Wenqiu was just passing by the cabinet where he put his notebook.
During the winter vacation when he was working in town Y, Lu Yong didn’t bring his notebook to record anything.
After returning home, he spent only a day writing down a dozen pages of nearly 10,000 words of memories.
After returning to school, the relationship between the two improved even further.
Even if Lu Yong was clumsy, he could vaguely feel that Shen Wenqiu was clinging to him more than before. He had passed the stage of being flattered and terrified, but he still felt shy. It made him blush and his heart beat more and more often.
Sheng Xu would complain that they had a too-good relationship and said that Shen Wenqiu only wanted to be with the new friend instead of old friends.
Shen Wenqiu would always help Lu Yong explain every time, saying, “What do you know? Lu Yong is a person with ideals and aspirations.”
Sheng Xu dismissed it and said meanly, “What ideals and aspirations? The ideal of opening a garbage station? Can he really become a billionaire by relying on this? Tsk, a billionaire in the heap of garbage, how amazing, how amazing.”
Shen Wenqiu said angrily, “You toxic… I won’t talk to you anymore. You’re really childish. I’m too lazy to argue with you.”
It was not the first time that Shen Wenqiu had protected him.
However, unlike before, although he used to defend out of friendship and violated his dignity, now he was actually supporting his dream.
Shen Wenqiu cheered him up in private, “Dayong, don’t listen to what they say. Xiao Xu is just like that. He can’t help but stab others with words, don’t take it to heart.”
Lu Yong nodded, “I know. I didn’t take it to heart.” He was used to listening to sarcastic words since he was a child, and he had practised to overcome all obstacles and completely disregard those things for a long time.
Shen Wenqiu stared at him as if he wanted to say something, but he held it in silently with words hovering on the tip of his tongue.
Lu Yong waited for a few minutes. As he saw that Shen Wenqiu seemed to stutter suddenly, he took the initiative to ask, “What do you want to say? Just say it, Xiao Baa.”
With a red face, Shen Wenqiu said, “I-I think I’m just talking as if I’m taking it lightly… I really support you with all my heart. Let’s start a business together in the future. After graduating from university, let’s start a company. You provide the technology, I will provide the funding, and I will be the first to support you. “
Lu Yong was stunned—a sense of superiority swelled rapidly in his heart.
Shen Wenqiu’s sincere eyes looked at him, and for a moment he frantically doubted whether Shen Wenqiu liked him.
Lu Yong was excited at that moment and he couldn’t hold back the love that was about to overflow from his chest. He couldn’t help but pull Shen Wenqiu’s hand and reply, “Okay.”
He liked Shen Wenqiu too much, but the words still came out dry, “Xiao Baa, you… You are so nice.”
Perhaps there were people in the world who were prettier and smarter than Shen Wenqiu, and it was not like there hadn’t been someone who was also really understanding and supportive in his career, but Shen Wenqiu was the best for him.
The best of the best.
It was not that Shen Wenqiu suited his mind, but what Shen Wenqiu was the standard that suited his mind.
At that time, Shen Wenqiu didn’t realise that the two of them were holding hands. It was so natural.
They looked at each other as if there was no one else in their eyes.
At this time, the voice of a classmate suddenly sounded, “Lu Yong, Shen Wenqiu, what are you guys doing?”
The two people came back to their senses as if they had just woken up from a dream, and withdrew their hands as if they were burnt. Shen Wenqiu stammered, “It’s nothing, I’m just giving him a hand…”
They walked side by side silently. After a while, Lu Yong just gathered up his courage and glanced at Shen Wenqiu. Shen Wenqiu lowered his head deeply as if he was looking at an ant, and there was a cloud of light pink and red shrouded his ears and neck.
It looked so cute to Lu Yong. He didn’t know how many times he felt his heart about to melt.
Still, things didn’t go as planned.
One day after the two teenagers made a verbal pledge, they went to the cafeteria for supper after the evening self-study, and the TV in the cafeteria was showing the evening news program.
The dignified hostess broadcasted solemnly:
“… Recently, China’s electronic products have developed rapidly, and the harm of e-waste cannot be underestimated… At the end of December, the Ministry of Information Industry will promote ‘Administrative measures for pollution prevention and control of electronic information products’, and a relevant discount loan pilot will be set up in Z Province and S Province, standardising the recycling of e-waste…”
Isn’t this where they are?
Lu Yong thought in a daze, and his heart suddenly warmed up. It felt like a pie had hit him on the head. He was stunned.
Lu Yong was still looking up at the TV in a daze, and Shen Wenqiu suddenly grabbed his hand.
Lu Yong only felt that the back of his hand was scalded by Shen Wenqiu’s hot palm, and when he came back to his senses, their agreement appeared in his mind. He couldn’t help but hesitate, but as soon as he lowered his head, he saw Shen Wenqiu’s bright smiling face.
Shen Wenqiu was happy for him from the bottom of his heart, and couldn’t hold back his excitement. He said to Lu Yong who was slow to respond, “Dayong! That’s great!”
Lu Yong thought for a while, then shook his head and said, “I’m not yet an adult… We promised to start a business together after college. We can’t catch up with this opportunity.”
Shen Wenqiu insisted, “Don’t worry about me. You are not yet an adult, but you can ask your father when you go back.”
When Shen Wenqiu said this, he only felt that he was too excited. He let go of Lu Yong’s hand, scratched his head and said, “But it’s true, we are all still children and starting a company is something too important. Let’s go back and I’ll help you ask my father. I still think we can’t miss this good opportunity.”
“You already have several patents. If you don’t have the money, I’ll help you ask my dad, as well as the uncles I know. I think some of them will be willing to invest.”
Lu Yong really wanted to do it. Even without Shen Wenqiu, he would probably still take this path, but Shen Wenqiu was still indispensable, and he couldn’t imagine what his life would be like without meeting Shen Wenqiu.
When he was young, he would be the purest and the most energetic, full of courage, thinking that there was nothing in the world that couldn’t be done.
He would not consider bankruptcy or failure and would do whatever he wanted.
He was naive to the point of ridiculousness.
Shen Wenqiu thought that if there was such a thing as heavenly luck in this world, Lu Yong would be the one who was favoured by fate. But then again, if he was God, he would also prefer a down-to-earth good person like Lu Yong.
Coming to Y town again, the changes here were very big.
The once dilapidated villages and roads were now flat and modernised, and luxury cars and buildings could be seen everywhere on the roadside. The locals still relied on the e-waste dismantling industry as the pillar of support, which was much larger than the scale from ten years ago. There were more than 20 villages, more than 300 enterprises, and more than 5,000 operating households in the town with more than 60,000 employees. Last year’s output value accounted for 90% of the town’s total economic output value.
Now that everyone was rich and the laws and regulations were perfected every year, they finally wanted to manage it. In this regard, Lu Yong’s company had the relevant technologies, and he himself was not stingy about teaching others. He was willing to share the technology at a very low price.
However, the locals and local tyrants didn’t welcome Lu Yong’s occupancy at all. They had already divided this big cake. After eating for so many years, it was not a problem that Lu Yong snatched their business, but he even came to their old nest. In their opinion, Lu Yong was standing on the moral high ground to say sarcastic words.
In the past few days, even Shen Wenqiu had a headache. He said to him, “President Lu, why not slow down the plan to build a factory here? Some cities have more favourable policies and regulations which I think are more suitable to get in touch with.”
“Also, it’s much easier to start preventing pollution before it’s too serious.”
Lu Yong was not disappointed as he had roughly expected this development, “Well, but you can’t just leave it alone.”
They walked outside.
And went to a river.
The river next to the industrial area was so polluted that it had turned black and had an asphalt-like texture. It was filled with all kinds of rubbish on the surface and gave off a stench.
The dark river reflected the grey sky.
Lu Yong squatted down by the riverbank, “A button battery can pollute 600 tons of water, which is equivalent to a person’s lifetime drinking water.”
Shen Wenqiu said gloomily, “I heard that they don’t drink local water at all. They all buy water from outside to drink it. There are too many local people who are sick, and even the results of the children’s examinations basically exceed the heavy metal standards. After earning money from polluting the land, they would move out after they make a fortune. But there are still many people who continue to do this one after another.”
There were still weeds growing by the river.
Lu Yong touched the weed. He wanted to pick it off, but he didn’t. He stood up, clapped the dust on his hands, and said, “I do not blame them for what they do. When people are too poor to eat at that moment, how can they care about what will happen in the next few decades or a hundred years?”
“I used to think it was because of a lack of technology, but now it doesn’t seem to be like that.” Lu Yong said, “Not necessarily, but more because there are no regulations. Just like a small button battery, there is a recycling process, but is there a convenient recycling channel network? Not yet.”
“Also, if there were regulations in the beginning, how would they have developed to this point? The regulations today are not considered perfect.”
Shen Wenqiu vaguely realised something and asked, “What’s your plan?”
Lu Yong stood still. The deep, black mirror-like river reflected his tall and straight figure. He calmly comforted him and said, “It doesn’t matter if we can’t negotiate here, you don’t have to be too stressed.”
“I plan to sign up for the National Progress Award. If it is selected, I will have more say in the recycling association.”
Lu Yong looked at him with a face that showed that he was not joking at all, and said, “I plan to participate in the formulation of the proposed rulemaking.”