Thank you Aryab for the Ko-fi!
Xiao Bai and Yuan Qian’s startlingly loud laughter came from TTC’s break room.
Xiao Bai was laughing so hard that he almost toppled over. He braced himself against the sofa and gestured at Pine, who was sitting next to the door. “P-baby, hurry up and lock the door.”
Pine said, “For what?”
Xiao Bai reached a hand out to brush away his tears from laughing. “I’m afraid that Doufufu will momentarily take it too hard and storm our break room to do something irredeemable.”
Ding-ge had a hand propped up against the wall as he stared at the television broadcast, thinking that this was definitely because he had been getting by too comfortably during these past few years.
As a result, the heavens sent a person like this down to torment him.
He turned to ask the team’s assistant manager next to him, “Do you still remember how much the termination fee was in that contract we signed with Soft?”
The assistant manager said, “I don’t remember. What’s wrong?”
Ding-ge: “Let’s terminate the contract with him. I’ll pay the fee and treat it as if I’m buying myself happiness for the latter half of my life.”
Even though he said that, he still had to take responsibility for the mess that his own team’s player created.
A few seconds later, Ding-ge clenched his teeth and said, “In a bit, I’ll go check out what the LPL allows players to say. Although Jian Rong didn’t say many decent things at all, at least he didn’t use any profanity, so it shouldn’t be too severe. There’s also Weibo… where are you going?”
Lu Boyuan opened the break room door. “Bathroom.”
Currently, all the staff members were busy, so the restroom was completely empty.
Lu Boyuan had just turned on the sink faucet when he heard a voice come from behind him—
“You gave those kills away quite skillfully.”
Lu Boyuan didn’t bother looking back. He cast his eyes downward and washed his hands. “How come you still haven’t left yet?”
“We didn’t have any matches today, so we were originally going to leave… but then your team’s mid laner locked in Zed the moment he went up, and our mid laner suggested leaving after watching the game here. That’s why we stayed until now.” XIU paused before laughing. “That’s right, I just heard that you were the one who recruited Soft? When did you start also managing who the team recruited?”
Lu Boyuan repeated for the nth time, “Not managing, just a recommendation. I don’t have the final say in who the team recruits.”
On the surface, that was true, but Lu Boyuan had been in TTC for many years now and had also seized countless excellent achievements for the team. The team would attach high importance to even one of his casually spoken comments.
“But your team’s new mid laner really is pretty good. His gameplay and awareness both aren’t bad. The only thing is that his personality is too ostentatious. It’s one thing if he uses Zed in a competition, but he even dares to make trouble during the post-game interview.” XIU walked over to him and ran the water in the next sink, quickly washing his hands before he fished out cigarettes from his pocket. “Want a stick?”
“Ding-ge will fine me ten thousand yuan for one cigarette.” Lu Boyuan shot a look at the cigarettes in XIU’s hand before swiftly averting his gaze again. “If you help me pay that, I’ll smoke a few with you.”
“Forget it then…” XIU lit a cigarette for himself before he suddenly recalled something and chuckled. “On my way over, I saw that Ding-ge was in the middle of lecturing your mid laner. In my opinion, he should be lecturing you. If you hadn’t let Soft take those three kills, it’s not certain who the MVP would’ve been.”
Speaking of that, XIU clicked his tongue. “When we queued together before, how come I never saw you give me any kills? Even if you didn’t give them to me, that’s fine, but you also stole them from me? Discriminatory behavior??”
Lu Boyuan hummed before he said carelessly, “Once you go and dye your hair blue, I’ll also give you some kills when we queue together.”
XIU: “…so you also had this kind of damn hobby, you should’ve said so sooner ah.”
Lu Boyuan didn’t feel like answering him. He dried his hands and threw away the paper towel. “Leaving now, enjoy your smoke.”
Right after Lu Boyuan left the bathroom, he saw the last match’s MVP standing against the wall, playing on his phone. Hearing noise, the other person raised his head, and their eyes met for a few seconds.
Lu Boyuan lifted an eyebrow and asked, “Ding-ge made you stand by the bathroom entrance as punishment?”
“…no.” Jian Rong snapped out of it and slipped his phone into his pocket. “The bus is waiting at the back entrance. You didn’t answer your phone when they called, so Ding-ge told me to go look for you in the bathroom.”
Lu Boyuan was used to putting his phone on silent during competitions, so it was very normal for him not to notice a call.
He nodded. “Then how come you didn’t come inside to look for me?”
Originally, Jian Rong was going to go inside.
But the moment he saw the bathroom door, he instantly remembered what happened that night he drank himself into a dead pig…
“I was afraid,” Jian Rong made up a random excuse, “of disturbing you while you went to the bathroom.”
Lu Boyuan: “.”
Jian Rong: “…”
On their way back to the base, Jian Rong covered his entire head with his team jacket, reclining back very serenely.
Xiao Bai was given a fright when he looked back. “What are you doing?”
Jian Rong said moodily, “Sleeping.”
Xiao Bai: “Isn’t this sleeping posture of yours a little too ominous?”
Jian Rong: “Oh, then next time I’ll stick a ‘good fortune’ talisman on my forehead before sleeping?”
“Leave a gap.” Lu Boyuan glanced at the back seat via the car window. “The heating is on in the bus, it’ll be stuffy.”
Xiao Bai was about to advise his ge not to bother with rebellious teenagers when, in the next second, the jacket beside him shifted a little.
Jian Rong obediently pulled down his jacket, revealing half of his face.
By the time they returned to the base, the dinner that Lu Boyuan ordered had already arrived. The five of them sat around the coffee table in the first floor living room and ate while watching tonight’s second match.
Ding-ge came back from outside while still on a call. Seeing his stance, Jian Rong thought that he was about to be scolded again.
“You guys all know what your height and weight are, right?” Ding-ge covered his phone and asked.
Yuan Qian questioned, his mouth covered with grease, “Yeah, what’s up?”
“They need the measurements for making merch, I’m not clear on the details either. Later when you’re done eating, each of you report your height and weight to me. The numbers should be genuine and exact.” Ding-ge looked at Jian Rong. “You too, from now on part of the merch will be yours.”
Jian Rong hesitated for a few seconds before he finally let out a dry “oh.”
“I refuse!” Xiao Bai raised a hand in protest. “A man’s weight is a secret! And it’s been a long time since I’ve measured my own height.”
Ding-ge nodded. “Then I’ll tell them to fill it in however they want. When the time comes, if the weight is four to six kilograms over, you better not pick a fight over it.”
“…” Xiao Bai admitted defeat. “But I really don’t remember anymore.”
Ding-ge said, “There’s a scale on the third floor. As for height…”
“I have a measuring tape in my room.” Lu Boyuan interrupted evenly.
“Great, those of you who need to measure your height can go borrow the tape measure.” Ding-ge glanced at his watch. “Send the numbers to my WeChat before you sleep.”
After eating and drinking his fill, Jian Rong went back to his room and took a shower. When he was blow-drying his hair, he purposefully dried it so that his hair stuck up quite high, so that it would be more convenient when measuring his height later.
He had drunk so many cups of milk. No matter what, he should’ve grown at least a tiny bit taller.
At ten, Jian Rong went to knock on Lu Boyuan’s door.
When nobody answered after two knocks, Jian Rong thought that the other person had gone to sleep, so he lightened his footsteps and turned to return to his own room.
A gust of warm air came out from inside the room. Lu Boyuan was rubbing his hair with a towel, and when he saw Jian Rong’s sluggish movements, he called out to him, amused, “Jian Rong.”
Jian Rong froze, and he turned his head. “…I wanted to borrow the measuring tape.”
Lu Boyuan opened his door wider. “Come in.”
Jian Rong originally wanted to say that he could just wait at the door, but Lu Boyuan had already left the door wide open and gone back inside. Jian Rong dithered for a little before he also followed him in.
The entire room was filled with a shower gel’s faint scent. Jian Rong couldn’t pinpoint what fragrance it was, but he felt like it smelled very nice.
Evidently Lu Boyuan had also just finished showering. His hair was damp, and his clothing was a little disheveled; he was wearing knee-length shorts, and he was currently bent over, rummaging through his drawers.
Jian Rong stared at his back for a while before he pressed his lips together and looked elsewhere.
Lu Boyuan’s room couldn’t be considered neat, but it wasn’t messy either. There was a LoL poster stuck on the wall and a basketball in the corner. He had tossed his team jacket very casually over a chair, and his wired earbuds hung chaotically over the edge of the pen holder on the desk.
Jian Rong rapidly retracted his gaze only when Lu Boyuan turned around holding the measuring tape.
He reached out, wanting to take it.
“Step back a bit.” Lu Boyuan said.
Jian Rong was startled and subconsciously took two steps back.
Lu Boyuan strode over to him. Seeing that they were about to collide, Jian Rong retreated a little more, and his back bumped against the wall, neither lightly nor heavily.
Lu Boyuan tossed the towel that he was using to dry his hair into the laundry basket. “Stand up straight.”
Jian Rong instantly understood what was going on, and he said, “I can do it myself—”
“It’s not easy to do alone.” Lu Boyuan crouched down and pressed one end of the measuring tape onto the ground. “Put your feet together, or else the measurement will be shorter.”
Hearing that, Jian Rong immediately brought his legs together, plastering himself against the wall and standing stick straight.
The youth’s calves were slim and also very pale. Lu Boyuan swept a glance over before he stood up while extending the measuring tape.
Jian Rong was looking downwards, and he just happened to be able to see Lu Boyuan’s dampened jaw and the ends of his hair. A section of his shirt collar had also been dyed dark, and it stuck to the man’s collarbones.
“You…” Lu Boyuan straightened up and lifted his other hand, pressing down on Jian Rong’s hair. “How did you blow-dry your hair?”
Jian Rong could smell the fragrance coming from Lu Boyuan’s body. He said, “No particular way.”
Lu Boyuan’s palm was pressing down on his head, and Jian Rong swallowed a few times repeatedly before he said, “How about I…”
The force coming from the palm grew a little heavier. “Don’t move.”
A few seconds later, Lu Boyuan reported a number. “174.”
“……………174.1.” Jian Rong corrected with a wooden expression, “At my checkup in October, it was 174.1.”
“Fine, 174.1.” Lu Boyuan paused briefly before he lowered his eyes and asked, “It seems like you wrote 175 on your resume?”
Jian Rong gritted his teeth. “It’s 175 if you round up to the nearest integer.”
Lu Boyuan laughed.
Jian Rong: “Don’t laugh.”
Lu Boyuan gave an “en.” “I didn’t laugh.”
Jian Rong discovered that when Lu Boyuan laughed, his Adam’s apple would bob once very slightly.
Now that his resume’s lie about his height had been exposed, Jian Rong basically fled in defeat as he was leaving. On his way out, he also ran into Xiao Bai.
“You’re done measuring?” Xiao Bai asked. “How tall?”
Jian Rong: “None of your damn business.”
Xiao Bai: “…”
Jian Rong went back to his room and laid on his bed for half an hour without falling asleep.
As a result, he took out his phone and searched on Baidu—
[Can you really grow taller by drinking milk?]
[Will you still grow at 17?]
[What can you eat to grow taller?]
[How tall is Lu Boyuan?]
When Jian Rong saw the screen that popped up, he was startled at first before he went to look at the profile on Baidu Baike—186 cm1.
Jian Rong was in the middle of holding his phone and feeling sour when he suddenly received a notification.
[Shiliu: Bro, you’ve really outdone yourself today. My entire Weibo homepage is praising you for being badass hahaha]
Jian Rong was feeling gloomy, but when he saw that text, the tiny bit of delight from beating up Doufufu today came surging back again.
[R-ong: Send me a screenshot]
[Shiliu: Even this needs to be screenshotted? Just open Weibo or Tieba, it’s all over both.]
Jian Rong didn’t need to log into Weibo to know how chaotic his comment section was right now. As a result, he thought a bit before he opened Tieba, which he hadn’t used for a long time.
He won the competition so beautifully today, so there was no way that group of dumbasses on Tieba could find anything to slander him over.
Jian Rong propped one hand behind his neck as he laid there and lazily clicked on “SoftBar.” He had already prepared himself to see a screen full of compliments when—
[Analyzing how many cm the dumbass’ insoles were today. [energetic] 1,211 replies]
Jian Rong stared blankly at the red line of text that greeted him. It took him a few seconds to recover and click on it.
[1L: Submitting two reference photos. One is the picture of God Lu carrying him, the other is a picture of him standing beside God Lu today]
[22L: Does this even need to be analyzed? At the very least it’s 4.5cm]
[124L: Ah, no wonder I thought that something looked off when he stood next to his teammates and bowed today…]
[333L: What in the world was going on inside that dumbass’ little melon head? Is it fun to trick himself? Or did he really think he could hide it from his dad?]
[498L: It’s good that he used them, or else on stage he wouldn’t even be as tall as that female host, losing face for all the friends in this bar.]
[607L: I’ve calculated it before, his real height is 174 at the most, I swear.]
Jian Rong: “…”
Jian Rong left the post and expressionlessly unfollowed that Tieba forum.
- About 6’1. If you don’t remember from before Jian Rong’s like 5’8.5 ^
Wei: It’s okay Rong Rong… height isn’t everything LOL you’re a short king