Chapter 481 - Big Payoff For Little Effort

Xia Lei’s words made Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun choke. They were both high-ranking men in large business groups, and were friends with the movers and shakers but Xia Lei had mocked them in front of so many people; he’d mopped the floor with their faces! How could they take this lying down! 

“Xia Lei! Did you mean that?” Mu Jianfeng’s expression was so dark it was scary. He looked ready to blow his top at any time. 

Ye Kun spoke in an exaggerated voice too. “Did you see that, everyone? A small company is already being arrogant when it hasn’t made it big yet. What will happen when it expands? Looks to me like even the Equipment Department would have to take orders from him, huh?” 

Some people whispered and talked; they were not happy with Xia Lei’s attitude and his way of doing things.

Xia Lei didn’t mind. It wasn’t because he didn’t know better and was making enemies - he knew that those who had come were not friends. They were Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun’s friends, related to China Industrial Group and Hanwu Weapons in some way. These people would never be his friends, even if he knelt and begged. If that was the case, then why worry about offending them? Besides, he wanted these people to see that he was not threatened by Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun. He, Xia Lei, was a capable individual!

Doing this had one advantage too, and that was if anyone saw him or Thunder Horse Military as a good investment, that person may be swayed. Perhaps the person would even join his side, and become invested in the interests of Thunder Horse Military Factory. 

There were no perpetual enemies in this world, just eternal interests. 

It was time to pull in the line after reaching his goal. Xia Lei said, “Dear directors, I do apologise. So, you wanted to pay a visit to the workshops and warehouses? Sure, I’ll take you there right now.” 

Xia Lei brought them to the workshops. 

The workers were assembling the XL2500 in the workshops. It was busy, but the work spaces were neat and tidy. 

“The XL2500 is produced like this?” said a uniform-wearing man from the Equipment Department. “I wouldn’t be able to tell that a small factory like this actually produces the world’s most advanced sniper rifle.” 

“Yeah. If they keep going, this company’s potential is limitless. It could become our country’s Barrett,” said someone. 

“It really is a case of the product being an extension of the creator. This Xia Lei has personality and the XL2500 sniper rifle is the same. It beat the Barrett company’s sniper rifles hands down. Impressive. Impressive, indeed,” said someone. 

These words reached Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun’s ears, and their faces darkened. The people they’d brought were those who had shared interests with China Industrial Group and Hanwu Weapons, but not their underlings. The praise for Thunder Horse Military Factory which slipped from their mouths made these two men sensitive and uncomfortable. 

A small smile appeared in the corners of Xia Lei’s lips when he heard these same words. ‘Any group of interest is not going to be comprised of fools. The connections the Gu clan had made is one such example. Those people had gotten rid of Gu Dingshan after his fall from grace to protect themselves. China Industrial Group and Hanwu Weapons are no different. These people are going to only protect their interests, and they will lean towards me if they feel I can bring them greater benefits.’ 

And he believed that this day was not far off. Once the Gust assault rifle got introduced to the market and shook the world, he would have orders flooding in from the Chinese military and more people would be on his side. They would share the interests of Thunder Horse Military Factory!

“Director Xia, please take us to the warehouse.” Mu Jianfeng did not want to stay in the workshop any longer. 

“Please come with me.” Xia Lei led these people to the warehouse. He watched Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun out of the corner of his eye as he walked. 

Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun were talking quietly. 

“Xia Lei and his factory aren’t producing assault rifles. Thunder Horse Military Factory only has the XL2500 and handguns in their product list. Looks like he doesn’t know what the local arms market and military want.” Ye Kun’s voice was low. 

Mu Jianfeng spoke quietly too. “We can’t be careless. Xia Lei must have his own source of information. He should know about the local military needs. We’re here today to see if he’s preparing for the weapons exhibition.” 

“If he is?” 

“If he is, then we need to gather information and prepare a counterattack. If we let him make a name for himself at the upcoming weapons exhibition then it’ll be difficult for us to stop his company from becoming a big name.” Mu Jianfeng’s expression was serious. 

Ye Kun nodded and looked at Xia Lei. 

Xia Lei slid his gaze away and pretended not to know anything. He’d guessed their motive when he was informed of their arrival. These two were trying to see if he’d produced the local military’s much-needed assault rifle, and they would probably do their utmost to cause trouble for him and ruin his chances of participating in the weapons exhibition if he was. 

A sneer appeared in the corners of Xia Lei’s mouth. ‘Mu Jianfeng, you old fox. Ye Kun, too. Even if you two were very smart and used all your fox-methods, you won’t get anything out of this. Just you wait - I’ll give you a big surprise on the day itself.’

He only had a sample for the Gust assault rifle now. The design plans for the most critical parts of the gun existed only in his head. What could Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun hope to gain when they didn’t even know of the existence of the Gust assault rifle?

In the warehouse, there were a small number of XL2500 sniper rifles stored there, but a large number of handguns, over 1,000. 

According to Annina’s plan, Thunder Horse Military Factory would stop producing handguns in its production lines once the Gust assault rifle production plan was put in motion. Almost 60% of production capacity would go to producing Gust. Additionally, if they received a large order from the military, Annina’s plan included expansion. This meant further investment and the building of a new production line. 

These were all top secret in Thunder Horse Military Factory, and Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun had no idea. 

A military officer picked up an XL2500 to try it out. It was not loaded, but the gun’s quality made praise fall from their lips again. 

“Director Xia, please take us to your company’s offices now,” said Ye Kun. 

Xia Lei looked at Ye Kun. “Are the workshops and warehouse not enough for your visit? What is there to see in the offices?” 

Ye Kun smiled a heartless smile. “Director Xia, we are here on behalf of the Equipment Department. It’s called a ‘visit’ to placate you. This is actually an inspection. You understand me? We will see what places we want to see today.” 

Xia Lei laughed. “So you really want to see our research and development, huh?” 

“We can’t?” Ye Kun sneered, “Not just your research and development. I want to take a look at your office too. I’d like to know how you’re managing this factory.” 

“Yes, that’s right. Please lead the way, Director Xia. We have to take a look at your office,” said a uniformed officer. “We’d like to know how your military factory is operating. We will write you up if there has been any violations and you’ll have to correct these violations in timely fashion.” 

This officer who’d spoken was obviously closely connected to Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun. He knew the purpose in their visit to Thunder Horse Military Factory and he was already starting to act on their behalf. 

“Sure, sure. I’ll take you guys there.” Xia Lei did not refuse. 

The more he resisted the more Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun would suspect that he had some sort of secret. Why not just let them take a look and quash their hopes on top of lowering their guard? 

Lu Sheng came over when they exited the warehouse and spoke softly in Xia Lei’s ear. “Director Xia, the items have been put away. They’ve been sent to the villa.” 

Xia Lei nodded. “Got it. Go back to your duties.” 

Lu Sheng made a sound of acknowledgment and walked off. 

Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun exchanged looks. 

Xia Lei brought the group to the office, and Ye Kun looked around the research and development department as he pleased, as well as Xia Lei’s office. However, neither he nor Mu Jianfeng found any clues that Thunder Horse Military Factory had plans to produce assault rifles. 

The group went one round around the office and gained nothing. They left the office with Xia Lei leading them. 

“Gentlemen, the tour of Thunder Horse Military Factory is finished. Would you like to stay for a meal, or return to your establishments? If you’re staying, I’ll notify the canteen to make preparations now.” Xia Lei smiled as he spoke, as amiable as can be. 

“Hold it,” said Mu Jianfeng. “I saw that your factory has a villa on its premises earlier. Take us there to have a look.” 

Xia Lei wrinkled his brows. “Chairman Mu, that is where I live. You’re interested in looking there too?” 

“Of course. Lead the way,” said Mu Jianfeng. 

Xia Lei spoke casually, “That place, huh. I have authorisation to go in, but you don’t.” 

“Heh heh.” Ye Kun sneered. “Director Xia, this is a visit by the Equipment Department. What place can we not enter? Is there some secret which cannot be revealed in that villa?” 

The group talked and said things to pressure Xia Lei. 

Mu Jianfeng seemed even more determined to have a look at the villa because he felt that it hid some secret. “Director Xia, enough of thinking about it - it’s no use. Don’t tell us we have no authorisation. I can guarantee that any one of us here has greater authorisation than you. Stop saying such laughable words.” 

Xia Lei shrugged. “Great, then I’ll take you there.” 

The group followed Xia Lei to the villa. 

Before they got close to the gates, Wu Xiaoguo and some Special Forces soldiers in full gear stepped forward and blocked the entrance. 

Xia Lei did not stop in his tracks. He walked up to the gate and the Special Forces soldiers stepped aside to let him pass. However, when Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun tried to enter, the soldiers blocked their way. Wu Xiaoguo and his men raised their guns. 

“Halt!” Wu Xiaoguo’s command was sharp. “Stand back!” 

“This…” Mu Jianfeng paused, then said angrily, “Which team do you belong to? Why are you blocking my way?” 

Wu Xiaoguo spoke aggressively, “You have no authorisation to know, and no authorisation to enter. I shall warn you again to step back. Do not come looking for trouble!” 

Mu Jianfeng was so angry he could not speak. 

An officer came forward and handed Wu Xiaoguo his documents. “Who is your leader? I’ll call him right now.” 

Wu Xiaoguo glanced at the document and chucked it on the ground. 

“You-” The face of the officer who had shown his rank turned the colour of pig liver. 

Wu Xiaoguo spoke coldly. “I’ll give you ten seconds to move away, or I’ll arrest you all!” 

Bang bang bang! A Special Forces soldier fired up into the sky in warning. 

Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun were scared by this and they retreated hurriedly. 

Xia Lei walked out of the villa and said with a smile, “Gentlemen, you saw it with your own eyes. I’m not lying, am I? I’m really the only one who can enter this place. You have no authorisation.” After a pause, he said loudly, “Chairman Mu, Chairman Ye, don’t be so arrogant next time. You’re not the greatest thing on Earth. There are many more who are bigger than you. Stop coming here to damage your own reputation. And let me tell you something else - Thunder Horse Military Factory is not going to go down just because you say so!” 

These words seemed to be aimed at Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun, but it was actually meant for the people behind them. 

His message to them was: Thunder Horse Military Factory has an even bigger backer than you guys. I have the political and financial benefits you want here. Think carefully if you still want to be on Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun’s side and make an enemy out of me!

“Let’s go!” Mu Jianfeng did not want to stay in Thunder Horse Military Factory for a second longer. 

Ye Kun raised a finger at Xia Lei, but said nothing. He had a scary look in his eyes. 

The group had come making a lot of noise but they’d left with nary a word. 

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