Chapter 57: It Isn’t Easy for Any One of Us
The meteor shower only ended at two in the morning. A total of 1038 meteors hit the ground, making it an extremely rare ‘Thousand Stars’-ranked meteor shower. The entire Southern Gold City and the neighboring smaller cities were completely left in ruins, a desolate wasteland.
However, people were already accustomed to such disasters. The moment the meteor shower ended, post-disaster reconstruction began.
As the evacuation before the meteor shower was carried out very smoothly, there were very few citizens who died in this disaster. In fact, it was the Heroes, who came to “help”, that ended up sacrificing their lives.
There was naturally a wake for the Heroes who passed away, but there were always Heroes, who sacrificed themselves in every disaster. The first time, people would cry, the second time, people would feel sad, but by the third or fourth time…or countless times, people became numb about it, accustomed to the sacrifice of the Heroes. It became a thing that was taken for granted.
When the duty of a Hero became a profession and a normal thing, it slowly lost its luster of noble sacrifice, and was soon forgotten.
As such, the Heroes’ wake was destined to be a hasty routine, and in stark contrast, a celebration dinner for the Heroes would be lavishly held. Many of the country’s leaders would come personally, extolling the praises of those Heroes who killed Astral Calamity Beasts. According to usual practice, they would hold a press conference at the celebration dinner and for the next few days, provide a lot of interesting material for the news.
The surviving Heroes enjoyed glory and were extolled, while the dead Heroes would quickly disappear from the Hero rankings. They would disappear from the news and being out of sight, would eventually be forgotten.
“For Heroes, this is the best of times, and also the worst of times. For a businessman, this is an excellent era.”
Xia Lin stood in front of a gigantic floor window. Up in the tall building, he looked down at the walking pedestrian as his eyes glimmered with a luster and his mouth revealed a slight, pleasant smile.
“Knock, knock, knock.” Suddenly, a rhythmic knocking of the door could be heard.
“Come in.” Xia Lin did not turn his head because he could already tell who the person was from the sound of the knocks.
The person who came in was a young girl dressed in a white-collared uniform. She politely greeted Xia Lin and gingerly walked up to him. In her hand, she held a stack of documents as she said softly, “This week’s results are out.”
Xia Lin acknowledged her presence and turned around to take the documents from her hands. Using the sunlight, he read extremely quickly. He read nearly ten lines at a glance, and the way he flipped through the documents looked like he was counting money.
The young female assistant did not even dare to breath normally. Her delicate face looked uneasy. The man in front of her was about the same age as she was, but he was the general manager of a large listed company. She had also seen enough of his artifice and means.
After Xia Lin was done flipping to the last page, he lifted frames of his glasses, reflecting the sunlight to conceal his eyes. It made his expressionless face appear without the slightest emotion.
“Tell me, is [Gaia] really on a decline or is it because my leadership is lacking?”
Xia Lin turned around to look at the female assistant as he revealed an easy-going smile, as if he was asking a simple question like what she was eating for lunch.
“Your leadership is redoubtable!” The female assistant hurriedly responded.
“Oh? Do you mean [Gaia] is going downhill? That’s why there’s not a single new Gold-ranked player this week? That’s why our store’s average winning rate is less than 40%? That’s why our branch store is ranked last in the weekly rankings?”
Xia Lin used a calm voice to list out very intense questions before finally saying with a smile, “So do you think all of this is because [Gaia] is on a decline? That’s why setting up a branch in [Gaia] was a mistake right from the very beginning, is that it?”
The female assistant felt wronged and thought in her heart that since he knew, why was he making it difficult for a junior employee like her! Are you trying to hear another answer from me? Isn’t it a well known fact that [Gaia] is on a decline? It would be surprising if the results of the shop set up in [Gaia] would be good!
The female assistant kept complaining deep in her heart, but she did not dare to show the slightest hint of discontent. Although Xia Lin was young and accomplished, he had been sent to a branch from headquarters due to his lack of experience. This branch’s results affected headquarter’s final evaluation of Xia Lin. Last week’s performance was extremely terrible, so it was unknown how much anger Xia Lin was simmering! She had to be extremely careful.
“No…No, it’s…it’s our fault!” The female assistant rolled her eyes as she could not think of any other excuse. She could only think of the most old-fashioned excuse—take the initiative to shoulder the blame.
“Heh heh, it looks like you aren’t dumb and are cognizant of your faults. You are still redeemable.” Xia Lin opened up his hands and smiled coldly as he turned to face the floor windows. He left the female assistant a cold and lonely back.
The female assistant was dumbfounded. Were the employees and herself the ones to be blamed in the boss’ eyes all along!?
“I have always stressed that customers in the virtual competitive business cannot be awaited. You have to personally promote, entice and solicit them, using every possible means to make them our customers. Even for a pedestrian on the streets, you must go to great pains to tell them the importance of virtual competition, pulling them into the virtual competition world, do you understand? You must think of a way to make them obsess about it until they are unable to extricate themselves!”
Xia Lin looked at the pedestrians on the street. Some of them were walking into the building he was in, while others carried on walking down the street without even taking a look. This was the difference between a customer and a non-customer. They were indifferent, cold and heartless, but there was limitless potential. Customers and non-customers only differed by a syllable, maybe a simple persuasion could make the syllable, “non”, disappear completely.
“This is an era of Heroes, and similarly it is an era of competition. Some people think lowly of virtual competition, believing that true battles can increase their personal strength. However, that is just ignorant prejudice. Virtual competition is clearly the fastest way for humans to improve their proficiency in combat techniques! Do you understand? We need to persevere at eliminating the prejudice people have for virtual competition. We must let those ignorant non-customers to understand the importance of virtual competition, making them our customers. We must make them obsess over virtual competition, let them become perfect numbers on our results!”
When Xia Lin was done speaking, he finally could not maintain his calm. The tone in his voice sounded agitated.
“I…I got it!”
The female assistant hurriedly replied, but she was lamenting in her heart. She had heard the same speech numerous times. The employees had also acted in accordance with Xia Lin’s instructions. They would always go out onto the streets to solicit for customers instead of working in the office. All of them were like promoters, and was nearing the level of a pimp. This still wasn’t enough?
“Heh heh, do you understand? It’s been a while, but the top three rookies in the present batch of rookies from the most recent evaluation test are still non-customers. All of you are too lazy.”
Xia Lin said with a cold smile, “I have already mentioned it many times. Those three rookies are extremely important resources. Regardless of the cost or means, you have to make them our loyal customers, especially that Shi Xiaobai! However, eleven days have passed. We have not received the business from the other two of the top three rookies, much less Shi Xiaobai! All of you have really disappointed me!”
The female assistant was beyond tears. No one knew what Shi Xiaobai looked like and information of his identity was highly confidential. It was as though he had disappeared from [Gaia], so how was she to draw him in? The other two rookies all had strong personalities. There was no way to move them with their words of persuasion!
The female assistant was complaining in her heart, but she could only verbally admit to her mistakes. As a junior employee, she did not dare contradict her boss, so she had no choice but to shoulder the blame!
“If apologies work, then the Huang Pu river wouldn’t be red.”
Xia Lin’s words sounded cold while his expression was colder. Suddenly he pointed out to a spot outside the window and said, “I’ll give you a final chance. Make that person a customer, and I’ll forgive you this once.”
The female assistant hurriedly took a step forward and traced Xia Lin’s finger out the window. She saw a youth on the streets moving laterally like a crab. The youth had already walked past their shop, but he looked back three times for every step he took, as though he was reluctant to leave.
“This person is now on the boundary of being a customer and non-customer. He just needs a simple push, do you understand? If one push isn’t enough, push him twice. If persuasion doesn’t work, try deceiving him. If deceiving him doesn’t work, force him. If forcing doesn’t work, then even if you have to take off your clothes and scream rape, you still have to force him in!”
Xia Lin said angrily, “This is your last chance!”
The female assistant hurriedly clung to her clothes as she felt her stomach churning. To think you can think of me screaming rape after taking off my clothes, what sort of sick pervert are you!?
Looking through the window, she saw a figure moving like a crab at a rapid pace down the streets. The female assistant did not dare delay any further. Immediately, she began waddling like a duck, while running with her high heels on.
Crab youth, stop there for me!
The female assistant was nearly going crazy!
“It isn’t easy for any one of us.”
Xia Lin looked at the female assistant’s back and sighed softly.
Author’s Note: A new arc will commence, it will definitely provide a sufficiently interesting plot for everyone!