Early the next morning, Xia Lei hailed a taxi from the village and went to the city. He called Tang Yu-Yan on the way there and went to her place, carrying the box with the sniper rifle.
Xia Lei pressed the doorbell and Tang Yu-Yan’s voice came inside. “Didn’t I give you the keys?”
Tang Yu-Yan was in the living room but she did not come over to open the door for Xia Lei. Xia Lei smiled wryly, then fished for his keyring and the keys Tang Yu-Yan had given him. He opened the door.
He saw a new addition to the living room when he walked in - a wooden dummy. Tang Yu-Yan stood in front of the dummy, practicing Wing Chun. She seemed to be afraid of the wooden dummy hurting her skin or giving her bruises or something, for she had wrapped it in thick layers of gauze.
The wrapping made the wooden dummy look like a zombie-mummy and it looked rather comical.
Tang Yu-Yan did look good, though. She was in her black exercise bikini again; skin-hugging racer-back top and short shorts, full chest and buttocks, all the curves of her body were nicely highlighted. Her round, plump buttocks and the indentation between her legs, especially, easily aroused the desires of men.
Tang Yu-Yan did not look back at him. She continued hitting the wooden dummy - fist, palm, leg. Every movement made her chest and buttocks jiggle and the little undulations could make one’s throat go dry.
Xia Lei put the box on the floor and laughed as he said, “What’s the use of practicing like this?”
Tang Yu-Yan stopped practicing and walked over to Xia Lei. “See here, I’m a woman. Who’ll still want me if I’m black and blue all over?”
“You’re so pretty - men must line up for kilometres to woo you. Why would no one want you?” Xia Lei teased.
“Hee hee…” Tang Yu-Yan’s giggles tinkled like little silver bells and she covered her mouth in an adorable fashion. She glanced at the box Xia Lei had placed on the floor. “It’s done?”
“Of course. I’ve tested it - effective distance of up to 3,200 metres. Almost the same as Long Bing’s,” said Xia Lei.
“So the three killers you finished off last night were killed with this sniper rifle?” Tang Yu-Yan opened the box and swiftly assembled the rifle.
“Yep, this one,” said Xia Lei.
Things like these could not be hidden from Tang Yu-Yan, who held the same rank as Long Bing.
She finished assembling the sniper rifle in the box in the span of Xia Lei’s short response, and swung the barrel around to aim it at Xia Lei.
Xia Lei instinctively ducked but quickly remembered that the sniper rifle had no bullets.
“Quick reflexes, eh?” Tang Yu-Yan smiled. She peered into the scope and said in surprise, “You polished the scope?”
“How are you going to hit a target over three thousand metres if I don’t polish it?” said Xia Lei.
Tang Yu-Yan gave him a thumbs-up. “You’re awesome.”
“I’ve given you the gun. When are you going to teach me Tang martial arts?” said Xia Lei.
“I knew you’d bring this up so I specially took a day off to rest at home.” Tang Yu-Yan put down the sniper rifle and suddenly swept a foot at Xia Lei.
She was quick, and strong. The beautiful leg coming in low was like a white eel. The black exercise bikini was suddenly stretched to its limits around her hips and crotch and that angle made one worry that the fabric would suddenly give, revealing certain things.
Xia Lei bounced lightly backwards and dodged Tang Yu-Yan’s sneak attack.
Tang Yu-Yan sprung up, her fists and feet swishing like the wind as she threw out move after move, raining blows down upon Xia Lei.
She’d attacked without warning and with Wing Chun too. Xia Lei defended against her blows easily. He knew well that he had to teach her Wing Chun first before she taught him Tang martial arts - it had been like that the previous time too. It was as Long Bing had said; she was a very clever and cunning woman who did not trust others easily.
A day passed with them sparring and exchanging pointers.
It was dark when he left Tang Yu-Yan’s home.
A whole day of martial arts had earned Xia Lei a small handwritten booklet from Tang Yu-Yan. In it was written the secret technique of Tang Qinggong and how to practice it. What she’d written, however, was not complete. It was Xia Lei’s first time reading it but he likely understood some things better than Tang Yu-Yan from his deep observation of Tang Qinggong. Putting the booklet together with what he knew revealed that what she had given him was not complete and she had kept some important things from him.
However, what Tang Yu-Yan gave him was what he could not observe with his eyes. He had the complete picture when he combined it with what he’d seen with his left eye. Tang Yu-Yan did not know this.
It was a give-and-take, so he had to give Tang Yu-Yan something in return; he gave her a handwritten Wing Chun booklet which was also incomplete.
Tang Yu-Yan had not been honest but Xia Lei understood why. It was common to keep the true techniques within the family in the Chinese martial arts world.
As usual, Xia Lei called for a taxi to go to Long Bing’s place and stay the night after leaving Tang Yu-Yan’s place.
The two of them had a long discussion that night…
Early the next morning, Xia Lei left Long Bing’s home and went to a coffee shop. A bespectacled young man soon came to stand before him.
“Excuse me, are you Mr Xia?” asked the young man politely as he pushed his black-framed spectacles up the bridge of his nose.
Xia Lei nodded. “I am. And you are?”
“I am Huo Ying, editor in chief of The Daily National. I was the one who received your call,” said Huo Ying.
“Please have a seat.” Xia Lei gestured for Huo Ying to sit, then put a document envelope on the table. He pushed it to Huo Ying. “Take a look. You can take it with you if you feel you’ll have the courage to put it to print.”
Huo Ying opened the envelope and flipped through it. His face grew increasingly grave as he read.
Long Bing had prepared the contents of the document envelope for Xia Lei. She had used some special connections to get information on officials who had dealings with the Gu clan. Some of these deals could be used as evidence.
“This…” Huo Ying could not continue.
“Will you dare publish it?” said Xia Lei.
Huo Ying thought for a bit before saying, “It’s not whether I dare to or not, it’s… You should know that if I let these things come to light, these people will gang up to bully me. Me losing my job is nothing, but if they…”
“Don’t worry. The people who recommended you to me are not small fry. We will guarantee your safety. Additionally, I have also taken into consideration the losses you will face and I’ve prepared for those,” said Xia Lei.
“What do you mean?” Alarm flashed in Huo Ying’s eyes.
Xia Lei took an envelope from the folds of his clothing and place it before Huo Ying.
Huo Ying opened the envelope and saw a Citibank savings card in it. He frowned. “What is the meaning of this, Mr Xia?”
Xia Lei laughed. “There are Citibank branches all over Jingdu, Mr Huo. You can withdraw money from them any time. This bank is not managed by the domestic banking systems so it cannot be found by others. There is five million in the account. This should be enough to cover your losses.”
“This…” Huo Ying was hesitant.
The traditional media channels have recently gone into a decline and an editor like him would only get about 300,000 annually. Xia Lei giving him 5,000,000 at once - this was over ten years of his annual salary.
“Don’t worry. There was no record of me putting the money in the account. I also have no recording devices on me. We can go to the bathroom and I’ll let you search me if you don’t believe me,” said Xia Lei.
“No, no, no, Mr Xia, who do you take me for?” Huo Ying said shamefully, “I’m not like those greedy officials.”
“I know you are an honest man, Mr Huo. But an honest man should also have the chance to make this sort of money. Don’t be mistaken - I am not bribing you. I am only giving you your just reward,” said Xia Lei.
Huo Ying considered it and finally took the envelope. He put it away.
Xia Lei smiled. “You are editor in chief, Mr Huo. You have subordinates and you also have friends in the media. It is best if you’d be able to disseminate this information in as many channels as possible. Can you help me with this?”
Huo Ying nodded. “No problem.”
He’d taken a five-million-yuan reward so his problem would be greed if he had any.
Huo Ying did not stay long and left after taking the document envelope. Xia Lei sat by himself for a bit before leaving the coffee shop and going to a 4S store.
Thunder Horse Manufacturing had opened a military factory in Jingdu so he was sure to have to be moving around a lot here. He could not be without a car. Jingdu had limits on licenses plates and it was difficult to get one but this problem did not exist for Xia Lei. He only needed to choose a car and let Long Bing know, and she would easily help him settle the matter with the car.
Xia Lei did not buy a sports car this time; he went to a Chevrolet 4S store and bought an imported Chevrolet Suburban SUV. A car like this was sturdy, withstood blows well, handled off-road driving well and could conquer urban and suburban road conditions. He also had a special reason for choosing this car, and that was because Jingdu was the Gu family’s main territory and he would not be worried if they sent someone to ram into his car. This might or might not happen but it was always best to be prepared.
Xia Lei swiped his card and got the car. He drove the Chevrolet Suburban SUV on the roads of Jingdu and called Long Bing while waiting for a red light at an intersection.
“I was just about to call you. Is it done?” came Long Bing’s voice.
“Done. He took the money. He’s worried about the Gu clan taking revenge. You have to find two people to secretly protect him so he’ll feel safer doing this for us,” said Xia Lei.
“You don’t have to worry about that. I’ve arranged it all,” said Long Bing, “Come to the military hospital at once. Danny’s awake.”
“I’ll be right there.” Xia Lei hung up and stepped on the accelerator.
Danny was awake - the bugle of counterattack had sounded.Previous Chapter Next Chapter