China Industrial Group did send someone, and it was a group led by Mu Jianfeng too. The big group consisted of elite machinists and electrical engineers from China Industrial Group, lawyers and Mu Jianfeng’s bodyguards.
But these people were all stopped at the gate.
The people stopping the representative group from China Industrial Group were not soldiers from the Equipment Department but Lu Sheng and the security team from Thunder Horse Military Factory. Mu Jianfeng could make the soldiers stand down but he could not command the security team of Thunder Horse Military Factory. The one in charge of security was Lu Sheng after all.
Lu Sheng was like a steel wall before the gates. The China Industrial Group machinists were all thrown to the ground one by one as they tried to charge in.
“What are you doing?” One of the lawyers pointed a finger at Lu Sheng and said angrily, “How dare you cause willful harm!”
Lu Sheng gave the lawyer a dismissive look. “Keep yakking and I’ll ‘willful harm’ you too!”
“You, you…” The lawyer was so angry his face and neck turned red. “I’ll sue you!”
Lu Sheng pointed in the direction of Bailu Town. “There’s a police station there. Go on. It’s not far. You can make a report in ten minutes.”
The lawyer was so mad he could not speak. He was a bookish man and Lu Sheng was a soldier. His books were no match for Lu Sheng.
“Just a guard dog and you dare to put on airs!” One of Mu Jianfeng’s bodyguards walked up to Lu Sheng, swinging his fist at him.
His aim was simple - topple Lu Sheng with a punch and let the China Industrial Group enter. But Lu Sheng twisted his shoulder aside before his blow landed and grabbed his fist. He pulled him forward, threw him over his shoulder and they were done.
Bam! Mu Jianfeng’s bodyguard was a burly man too but Lu Sheng had him laid out on the floor in the blink of an eye. The bodyguard was one which the Equipment Department had assigned to Mu Jianfeng and was a soldier more capable than the regular Special Forces but how could he be a match for Lu Sheng, who was well-versed in Wingchun? Lu Sheng had also trained as a Special Forces soldier so he knew well the fighting techniques used by them.
Mu Jianfeng’s other bodyguard grew angry too and he came charging at Lu Sheng.
Lu Sheng suddenly wrenched the hand of the bodyguard under his feet in the other direction. The bodyguard on the ground let out a scream and cold sweat popped out on his brow.
“Come at me if you want him crippled.” Lu Sheng was domineering. “If you want to end up like him too, then come at me!”
The bodyguard charging at Lu Sheng stopped in his tracks.
The China Industrial Group group had been full of arrogance when they’d first arrived, clamouring to investigate if Thunder Horse Military Factory had infringed on copyrights and had built the intelligent lathe which had previously been sold to them. But now, they were not even able to enter. This reality was a huge difference from the situation and result they had imagined.
When had the high and mighty China Industrial Group every suffered this sort of humiliation?
Mu Jianfeng had been behind the group, waiting to enter the factory and conduct the investigation. He couldn’t keep his old face calm any longer. He had brought this group to Thunder Horse Military factory with the aim of stopping Xia Lei from copying the intelligent lathe he had sold to China Industrial Group and to have a look at what sort of intelligent lathe Xia Lei was building so that he could go on to the next step.
His next step was to use the law to get his hands on this new lathe’s design plans and technical data. He believed he had the capability to obtain these things. His strategy was simple too - claim that Xia Lei’s lathe was a copy of the lathe at China Industrial Group. His claim would hold true unless Xia Lei produced the design plans and data to prove that it was not the same, and if Xia Lei handed in this ‘evidence’ to the court they would all end up in his hands too.
But this brilliant strategy was being stymied by this barbaric Lu Sheng!
It was time for him to get personally involved.
Mu Jianfeng walked from the back of the group to the front to face Lu Sheng square on. “Punk, I have one word for you - shoo.”
Mu Jianfeng’s voice was heavy with threat and he had an air of someone one could not afford to offend.
Lu Sheng did not budge. He did not speak to Mu Jianfeng.
“Fine.” Mu Jianfeng’s gaze went to the soldiers in the gate area and he said, “Soldier, call your leader over.”
“This…” The soldier hesitated. He did not want to be involved in what was transpiring before him and he was troubled when Mu Jianfeng told him to call his leader over.
“This is an order,” shouted Mu Jianfeng.
“Yes, Sir!” The soldier ran off.
As the director of China Industrial Group, Mu Jianfeng held a military rank too. A little soldier could not argue with him when he decreed it an order.
Mu Jianfeng looked at Lu Sheng again. “I’ll have you arrested once he comes. You either let us through right now or keep going against me and end up in a worse situation.”
Lu Sheng still looked calm on the surface but he was getting a little worried.
The group of people behind Mu Jianfeng looked on in schadenfreude. No one spoke but there seemed to be a voice saying ‘Aren’t you a violent man? Let’s see how much longer you can act violently!’
“Lu Sheng,” came Xia Lei’s voice, “Return to the security office. This doesn’t concern you anymore.”
Xia Lei appeared before them in blue work clothes. He had grease-stained gloves on and the blue work clothes he wore also had several scorch marks from electric welding. He did not look like the director of Thunder Horse Group, nor the hot ‘young military scientist’ in the news but like a blue-collar worker.
Lu Sheng said, “Director Xia, these people…”
“It’s fine, it’s fine. I’ll take care of it. You go back first,” said Xia Lei.
Lu Sheng nodded, released Mu Jianfeng’s bodyguard and walked away from the gates of the factory.
The leaders of Thunder Horse Military Factory and China Industrial Group were now face-to-face.
“What are you trying to do, Director Mu?” said Xia Lei softly, “Bringing so many people here to cause trouble for me. Isn’t that too much?”
“Too much?” Mu Jianfeng snorted. “You’re the one who’s too much.”
“You know how,” said Mu Jianfeng. “Back then you sold the intelligent lathe to us and we paid you the price of over 200,000,000. Have you forgotten the contract you signed with us? You have no right to build another one of these intelligent lathes.”
“And have you seen me build that type of lathe?” Xia Lei was calm.
“Then let us in and take a look,” said Mu Jianfeng. “And show us the relevant drawings and specifications. You can prove that you’re not building that type of lathe if you show us all of that.”
“Heh heh.” Xia Lei chuckled. “And if I don’t?”
“If you don’t then that’s simple too. We will sue you and make you provide proof that you’re not building that sort of lathe,” said Mu Jianfeng.
“So to put it plainly, you’re still after my design plans and my technology.” A faint scornful smile appeared in the corners of Xia Lei’s lips. “Director Mu, you’re a man of many years but why are you still so naive? You think you’ll get what you want with this method?”
“You said that the lathe you sold to China Industrial Group was the most advanced in the world when you sold it to us for over 200,000,000. Now you’re saying that you’re going to build a lathe that is even more advanced than the one you sold us and you’re not going to share the technology with us. Fine, then I won’t allow Thunder Horse Military Factory to have a lathe that is more advanced unless you share the technology. We’ll use legal channels to make it happen,” said Mu Jianfeng with great conviction.
His words seemed to make some sense but a closer look revealed that it was almost the logic of a robber. And he did have the capability to put pressure on Xia Lei too, to force Xia Lei to submit.
“Leave. Stop wasting time,” said Xia Lei, “You want to go the legal route? Sure. I’ll go along with it.”
“I will leave, but not before I have a look inside.” Mu Jianfeng sneered, “And when I go, and how I go shall not be dictated by you. I will leave when I leave.” Mu Jianfeng was stubborn and his tone scornfully disdainful.
He did not treat Xia Lei like the owner of the place at all, much less think anything of him!
At that moment, the leader of the guards at Thunder Horse Military Factory came hurrying over with a squad of soldiers. This military officer was named Wang Wei and he was a Captain from the Equipment Department assigned to Thunder Horse Military Factory to provide protection. He was not under orders from Xia Lei but from the Equipment Department.
Wang Wei stood at attention right away and gave Mu Jianfeng a military salute. “Greetings, Senior Official.”
Mu Jianfeng smiled and nodded. “Take these people aside. I want to enter the factory for inspections.”
“This…” Wang Wei hesitated and looked very troubled.
“This is an order!” said Mu Jianfeng in a raised voice.
Wang Wei did not move still; he glanced at Xia Lei.
Xia Lei then took out a walkie talkie from the pocket of his work clothes. “Qin Xiang, get all the workers out to defend our Thunder Horse Military Factory.”
In under a minute after Xia Lei uttered those words, hundreds of workers came pouring out from the various workshops. They carried various tools in their hands and some female workers were even carrying brooms and mops. They looked like a ragtag bunch but their number and enthusiasm were great.
A dark mass of workers filled the entrance area, glaring at the group from China Industrial Group. Some couldn’t help cursing at them, and the curses were quite terrible.
“What are you planning, Xia Lei?” Mu Jianfeng’s expression darkened.
Xia Lei raised a hand to gesture for everyone to quiet down. All the workers grew silent when he raised his hand.
Xia Lei raised his voice, “The people from China Industrial Group are here to smash your rice bowls. What will you do?”
“Beat them up!”
“Come into the factory if you dare! You’ll find out what asphyxio-balling is!”
“Your grandchildren will be born retarded!”
Curses fell upon their ears like rain.
The salary Xia Lei paid his employees were higher than average and that did not include bonuses and other benefits either. No employee wanted Thunder Horse Military Factory to be shut down. Of course they were going to protest if someone was going to try shut them down!
Xia Lei grinned. “You’re a stubborn man, Director Mu. You have the authority to order these soldiers around but do you dare order these soldiers to shoot at my military factory employees? Or let your people have a faceoff with my people?”
Mu Jianfeng’s lips moved a little but he did not voice his threat. He was a wily old fox but he did not understand the logic behind Xia Lei’s actions. Situations involving a community were most dreaded in China. It was risky enough that he had led a group to pressure Xia Lei but if it incited a mob, the soldiers got involved and people got injured, then he would be the one in trouble!
“I’m waiting for you to make a decision, Director Mu,” said Xia Lei.
“Humph! Wait for our company to send you a summons to court.” Mu Jianfeng snorted. “Let’s go!”
At the same time, Xia Lei turned around to face his employees. “An extra meal for everyone today!”
Cheers erupted.Previous Chapter Next Chapter