With the help of “professionals,” Lu Ye and his team’s work efficiency improved significantly.
Qi Yanbai’s artistic talent was remarkable.
The portraits were so vivid that they looked like close-up photos.
Lu Ye and his group spent most of the night in the surveillance office of the image analysis department.
They carefully reviewed the surveillance footage copied from the park, and in the end, they successfully identified a suspect who resembled the portrait near the back door of the park.
The person was a semi-freelance electrician who often repaired outdoor electrical facilities in various public places.
He was quite familiar with the surveillance cameras and the locations of electrical rooms in different areas.
When Lu Ye and the team arrested him, he was even at home preparing new tools for his next crime, as if he hadn’t considered the fact that the police would easily find him.
“As the saying goes, the net of justice is cast wide but it doesn’t let anything slip through.” Lu Ye’s colleague returned after escorting the suspect, sighed and then intentionally walked over to Lu Ye’s workstation.
He nudged him with his elbow and winked, saying with implied meaning, “Hey, you know, it’s all thanks to Teacher Qi’s help—how about organizing something to express our gratitude?”
Perhaps because of Lu Ye’s unusual behavior of frequently visiting Qi Yanbai’s apartment recently, his colleagues had sensed an unusual atmosphere and started teasing him about it.
Even the way they referred to Qi Yanbai changed from “your friend” to “Teacher Qi.” Lu Ye had almost gotten used to it.
“It’s worth thanking.” Lu Ye had a different idea about Qi Yanbai and no longer tried to deny the relationship between them, so he said, “But you don’t need to worry about it; I know what to do.”
The case concluded faster than expected, and no more victims were found.
Qi Yanbai did indeed contribute more or less to the outcome.
Although Lu Ye wanted to thank him, he didn’t go to the extent of ordering a large banner with red letters to show his gratitude.
Instead, after thinking it over, he took advantage of the end-of-year opportunity at the bureau to apply for a volunteer position for Qi Yanbai.
“Is this really a way to say thank you?” Qi Yanbai looked at the application form in his hand several times, couldn’t help but chuckle, and said, “You’re not trying to recruit me to do more work again, are you?”
“Totally false accusation.” Lu Ye, dressed in loose home clothes and slippers, leaned lazily against Qi Yanbai’s doorway.
He raised an eyebrow at the comment and playfully said, “It was you who asked me before if there would be more opportunities like this, remember?”
Perhaps he had become curious about thrilling and unfamiliar territories.
Since Qi Yanbai participated in the case investigation, he couldn’t quite let it go.
He often mentioned it in conversations and subtly suggested that he could be of assistance in the future.
However, civilians couldn’t casually participate in cases, so after some thought, Lu Ye simply applied for a volunteer spot for him.
This way, Qi Yanbai could satisfy his curiosity and assist in drawing sketches of thieves, scams, and cheats in the future, which would be convenient for both parties.
But while he had arranged this, he couldn’t help but have a mischievous thought and decided to tease Qi Yanbai a bit.
“But if you’re not curious anymore…..” Lu Ye straightened up slightly as he spoke, reaching out as if he was going to snatch the application form from Qi Yanbai’s hand.
He pretended and said, “Then, never mind.
We won’t force this ‘volunteer’ thing.”
Qi Yanbai knew he was being teased, and he always found himself being easily teased by Lu Ye.
He quickly stepped back and playfully said, “I want it, thanks.”
“No problem, you’re welcome.” Lu Ye didn’t really intend to snatch it, so he dropped the act when it didn’t work.
He lazily leaned against the door again and watched Qi Yanbai search for a pen while wearing his fluffy slippers.
He couldn’t help but add in a thoughtful tone, “Volunteers don’t get paid, but there’s also no mandatory work requirement.
You can help out when you’re free and prioritize your own time when you’re not.”
“I’m free anytime.” Qi Yanbai finally found a pen under the coffee table and returned to the entrance.
As he filled in his personal information while bent over the entryway cabinet, he said casually, “You know my class schedule.
Except for class time, you can find me anytime.”
After getting to know each other better, Lu Ye discovered that, despite his seemingly sociable exterior, Qi Yanbai had very few friends.
Since Qi Yanbai moved in, Lu Ye rarely saw him going out for leisure activities during his free time.
Most of the time, he preferred to stay at home, either painting or engaging in other interests to pass the time.
“Don’t always stay at home.” Lu Ye watched Qi Yanbai fill out the information line by line and said casually, “Occasionally, go for a walk and refresh your mind.”
“If there are no interesting activities, there’s no point going out.” Qi Yanbai said, “Besides, company team-building events are either drinking and singing or playing real-life CS, which is too tiring.
Is it filled out like this?”
Lu Ye leaned over to check the line Qi Yanbai was referring to, nodded, and said, “Yes, leave it blank if there’s nothing there.”
As if worried that Lu Ye might change his mind, Qi Yanbai hastily finished filling out the form.
Lu Ye couldn’t help but laugh at his energetic handwriting and said, “Take your time, nobody’s rushing you.
Why so anxious?”
“I’m not anxious.” Of course, Qi Yanbai wouldn’t admit it.
With a few swift strokes, he signed his name and then handed the completed application to Lu Ye, saying, “Take a look.
Is this okay?”
“Right here?” Lu Ye raised an eyebrow, puzzled, and asked, “Why can’t I enter your apartment today? Is there a secret you’re hiding from me?”
With only two households on each floor and card-activated elevators, the privacy in this building was excellent.
Since Qi Yanbai moved in, the doors of both apartments had been left open most of the time.
Lu Ye could come and go as he pleased and had never been blocked at the door before.
“What secrets could I have at home?” Qi Yanbai said, “don’t you always come in several times a day?”
“Who knows.” Lu Ye said solemnly, “Mingming did say that you have a secret portal like in Harry Potter hidden at your place, and she needs to keep it secret for you.”
Qi Yanbai knew that it was definitely her who accidentally revealed it.
With a helpless shake of his head upon hearing Lu Ye’s words, he playfully scolded, “Little traitor.”
“so….” Lu Ye grinned, “what secrets could you be keeping from me?”
“No secrets, I was just teasing Ming Ming.” Qi Yanbai admitted openly, then stepped aside to make way and made a welcoming gesture, saying with a smile, “That’s my art studio.
If you want to see it, feel free to come in.”
Lu Ye actually didn’t have any intention of prying into Qi Yanbai’s privacy.
He had just made a casual joke.
After Qi Yanbai’s response, he shook his head and declined, “No need, I stayed up all night last night.
I’m planning to catch up on sleep in a bit.”
“Right.” Lu Ye changed the topic, asking, “Are you free this weekend?”
“Yes.” Qi Yanbai replied casually, “What’s up? Do you want to eat something again?”
“No.” Lu Ye chuckled and unintentionally revealed a sense of anticipation.
He tilted his head and smiled mischievously, then continued, “There’s an art exhibition in the city this weekend.
My sister gave me two tickets.
Since I’m not on duty that day, I thought I’d ask if you want to go with me.”
After a pause, Lu Ye continued with a hint in his voice, “I assume you’re interested in this kind of thing, right?”
Qi Yanbai did have an interest in art exhibitions, but it was apparent that this kind of activity was quite different from Lu Ye’s usual style.
He was taken aback for a moment, almost unable to react in time.
“Art exhibition?” Qi Yanbai pointed to Lu Ye and then to himself, a bit puzzled as he asked, “You and me?”
“Why not?” Lu Ye smiled and said playfully, “Who else would you want to go with besides me?”
Unintentionally, Lu Ye’s sense of intimacy, revealed through his words and actions, was like a soft, subtle brush that lightly scratched Qi Yanbai’s most sensitive spot, making his heart itch.
Blinking, he almost instantly sensed a certain anticipation in this invitation.
“No one else, I want to go with you.” Qi Yanbai pursed his lips and smiled, saying, “But this is so sudden.
There should be a reason, right? Are you trying to thank me, or are you asking me out?”
When Qi Yanbai first met Lu Ye, he was somewhat careful, always holding a facade of a “perfect teacher.” He was cautious in his speech and actions, even when he was trying to be friendly, he appeared a bit vulnerable.
However, as time passed and they got to know each other better, Qi Yanbai gradually revealed a more lively side in front of Lu Ye.
He didn’t just secretly complain about being busy at work but occasionally showed up at Lu Ye’s door in his pajamas late at night, sighing and asking him for help to review his teaching report.
Even his jokes had become more natural than when they first met.
Lu Ye seemed to not expect Qi Yanbai to counterattack in this way.
He raised an eyebrow in thought and then, half-serious and half-playful, inquired, “Is there a difference?”
“Of course there is.” Qi Yanbai’s tone was light as he said, “If you’re trying to thank me, then there’s no need.
After all, helping the police is a civic duty and doesn’t require such politeness.”
“True.” Lu Ye agreed with a chuckle.
Then, his tone shifted, and he said, half-serious, half-teasing,
“What if I want to ask you out?”
Qi Yanbai laughed and replied, “In that case, I’ll accept.
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