It was evening, and the spring sunset looked extremely beautiful.
A family was sitting at the dining table eating dinner in Leiyin Home.
"Xue, don't you have a boyfriend?" Shentu Tianyin smiled as she said, "When are you going to bring him home so that your brother and I can have a look at him? Let us help you check him out."
"That's right." Xia Lei suddenly remembered. "I heard you say something about someone named Lu Zijing back when we were in Haizhu, before the Chinese New Year. You guys are schoolmates too."
Xia Xue said, "He's an older schoolmate."
Xia Lei laughed as he said, "That's right, why don't you bring him home? I also heard you say that you were going to introduce him to my company for employment. I want to meet him and find out what kind of a guy won my little sister’s heart. Also, since he's going to work at my company, I should observe his capabilities."
Xia Xue however, closed her mouth and stopped speaking.
"What's wrong? Did you guys fight?" Shentu Tianyin was more sensitive than Xia Lei and she had felt that something was out of place.
Xia Xue then said, "Our relationship failed."
"Why?" asked Xia Lei in surprise.
He had heard Xia Xue talk about him before the New Year, and felt that this someone from the mountains was a worthy man for Xia Xue, to entrust her whole life to him as the Xia family's son-in-law. However he hadn't even met the lad named Lu Zijian, and everything was over.
Xia Xue pouted. "Brother, our personalities are too different. I really liked him at first but I didn't feel anything anymore after we’d dated for a while."
Xia Lei still wanted to ask her about it but Shentu Tianyin gave him a light kick under the table and then said in his ear, "Stop asking. All the youngsters nowadays are all like this. Plus, what kind of a person is Xia Xue? She's the little sister of the Father of Rifles, so wouldn't her expectations be high? If she's going to marry, she should marry a good man. There's no rush. Let her choose slowly."
Xia Lei laughed at this. "All right, then I'll stop asking." After a pause, he said to Xia Xue, "Being in love is just being in love, but keep in mind that you have to have a sense of propriety, all right?"
Xia Xue's face reddened as she said in cute indignance, "What are you talking about, Brother? I don't understand.”
Xia Lei was also feeling very awkward. "If you don't understand, then forget about it. Your sister-in-law can teach you later."
Shentu Tianyin kicked Xia Lei lightly in the leg again under the table, but she understood Xia Lei's suggestion too. Some things were inconvenient for a big brother to talk about, but it would be perfectly fine for her to discuss them as a sister-in-law.
"Brother, Sister-in-law, I'm done eating so I'll go back to my place now." Xia Xue put her bowl and chopsticks down, her face red. She got ready to leave. She was a girl who had not experienced the real world yet after all, and some things would be awkward for her even if it was Shentu Tianyin talking to her about it. Just thinking about it made her face turn red.
"Go on, go on. I'll come chat with you another time,” said Shentu Tianyin.
"Nn" Xia Xue gave a sound of assent. She left the dining room without looking Shentu Tianyin in the eye, leaving like she was fleeing.
Fu Mingmei walked in before Xia Xue left. "Son-in-law, a man named Liu Zhengnan is here to see you. Do you want to see him?"
"Yes, I'll go to the study to wait for him. You can bring him to the study,” said Xia Lei.
"All right, then. I will go immediately." Fu Mingmei left.
"Hubby, didn't you give him days off from work? Why would he come to our house to see you?" Shentu Tianyin asked casually. Thunder Horse Military Factory had managed to get Liu Zhengnan, a highly talented person, so she definitely knew about him.
"I don't know either. I'll go to the study to see him." Xia Lei got up and left.
Xia Lei thought to himself as he walked out of the dining room, 'I hope Liu Zhengnan didn't come because of Annina's house. Tianyin definitely wouldn't be happy if she found out.'
He didn't have to wait long in the study before Liu Zhengnan came in.
"Director Xia." Liu Zhengnan greeted him politely and a little awkwardly. "I came over in a bit of a hurry so I didn't have time to prepare any presents. I came empty-handed, as you can see."
Xia Lei patted Liu Zhengnan on the shoulder and laughed. "What are you being so polite with me for? In the future, no matter what happens you can always find me here. We can drink tea and talk or do whatever."
They had gone through life and death experiences together, so Xia Lei already considered Liu Zhengnan his Brother.
"All right, then thank you so much." Liu Zhennan suddenly laughed. "Look at me, I got polite with you again. I always forget that. I'll just talk business with you now. I came to discuss the stock market with you."
"Stock market?" Xia Lei drew a blank because Thunder Horse Military Factory wasn't listed on the market.
Liu Zhengnan said, "Director Xia, I'm not talking about our Thunder Horse Group but… your wife's Vientiane Group."
"What's going on?" Xia Lei was curious and bewildered.
Just then, Shentu Tianyin appeared in the study doorway, holding two cups of tea. She entered the study with a smile on her face. "Why are you guys standing and talking? You didn't even offer Zhengnan a seat. Zhengnan, have a seat. I've made oolong tea for you two."
"Thank you, Sister-in-law." Liu Zhennan hurriedly received the tea with two hands. Being able to drink tea brewed by the queen of the Vientiane Group was an honour.
Shentu Tianyin put the tea down and turned to leave.
Liu Zhengnan said, "Sister-in-law, please hold on for a moment."
Shentu Tianyin said, "I won't get involved when you two men are discussing something. You guys can talk."
Liu Zhennan said, "What I am about to say concerns your company."
Shentu Tianyin stopped in her tracks. "What's the matter?"
Liu Zhengnan said, "The Vientiane Group has some unusual indicators."
"Quick, tell me, what's going on?" Shentu Tianyin no longer planned on leaving. She sat next to Xia Lei and glanced at him, as if curious about why Xia Lei hadn't told her about this while Liu Zhengnan was the one to break it to her.
Liu Zhengnan was a very smart person. He saw something in Shentu Tianyin's eyes and followed with, "Sister-in-law, Director Xia did not know of this either. I was about to talk about it when you came in. Actually, I would have asked Director Xia to get you even if you hadn't come in."
Shentu Tianyin only smiled.
Liu Zhengnan continued, "Sister-in-law, I like speculating in stocks a lot and I've researched this aspect a bit. I have some Vientiane stocks, hmm, I think I'll put it this way. I looked at the daily candlestick charts, the weekly candlestick charts, and the monthly candlestick charts and I discovered that some people were buying Vientiane's stocks in large quantities. Sister-in-law, haven't you felt that Vientiane Group stocks have been rising too well recently? The overall stock situation is falling in contrast.”
"Our profits are very stable and we've launched several projects over this period of time. We've received a lot of favorable news one after another so having the stock price rise should be quite normal," said Shentu Tianyin.
Liu Zhengnan said, "If the entire market was doing well, then individual stocks rising would be normal. A crazy rise in stock price like this, opposite to the market is abnormal. In stock market terms, if stocks are increasing like crazy against the market, there are definitely some evil-doers at play here.”
Xia Lei said, “Zhengnan, you mean to say that someone is secretly purchasing Vientiane Group stocks?”
Liu Zhengnan nodded. “I think so. This investor is very shrewd and his techniques seem quite practiced. You wouldn’t be able to tell unless you look closely. Over the last few days, the stock market has continued to fall. It has already fallen below 3000 points. It’d be very easy for stock investors to abandon their stocks. This means it will be easier for other investors to acquire more of Vientiane Group’s stocks.”
Shentu Tianyin frowned. “Have you managed to investigate and find out which bank account has been mass purchasing Vientiane Group’s stocks?”
Liu Zhengnan said, “There are a lot of accounts. It’s not just one or two, but more than a hundred. These big spenders opened accounts under different stock exchanges but they focused on buying Vientiane Group’s stocks the most. One account doesn’t seem like much but adding all those big spender accounts together means that the Vientiane Group stocks that they bought has almost reached a level where it raises an alert.”
Shentu Tianyin’s expression immediately became grave. She knew that the alert level Liu Zhengnan was referring to was the alert level that Vientiane Group’s board members had set. If it went over that, a stranger would have to be added to the board of directors. If that person wasn’t speculating in stocks to earn money, but was after her and her Vientiane Group, then things would be very bad indeed.
Xia Lei held Shentu Tianyin’s hand and said gently, “Don’t worry. I’ll take care of everything.”
Shentu Tianyin nodded. “Zhengnan, are you sure that this is the situation? Someone is secretly purchasing Vientiane Group’s stocks and preparing to deal with me?”
Liu Zhengnan replied, “Sister-in-law, I don’t know if it’s someone who wants to harm you, but I’m certain that some people are secretly purchasing Vientiane Group’s stocks. Before I came here I even talked to one of my friends, Cai Yongjian. He is an amazing trader for a funds company. He is of the same opinion as me. I thought this was quite serious, so I hurried over here.”
If a trader of a funds company thought the same way too, then this was basically true. Shentu Tianyin’s mood became more serious as well.
Xia Lei said, “Zhengnan, I’m not very familiar with stocks. Do you have any good suggestions for what to do in these circumstances?”
Liu Zhennan said, “The simplest method would be to compete with the buyers in buying up the stock. If our opponent buys it, we’ll buy it too. This way, the stock price will soar. Both sides will suffer from the economic bubbles of the insane stock price increases. Another method would be to locate the other party, negotiate with him, understand his motives and funding reserves and so on. After understanding the circumstances, we’ll have more options.”
“This hasn’t happened before. Who could it be?” Shentu Tianyin suddenly asked. Her eyebrows were deeply furrowed, and she looked like she had a lot on her mind. She seemed to be trying to guess at who it was, but could not confirm anything.
Xia Lei said, “Leave this matter to me. I’ll investigate who this person is. Zhengnan, since you’re taking a break these next few days, you can help me keep an eye on the stock market situation.”
Liu Zhengnan said, “No problem. I will keep an eye on it. If anything happens, I’ll contact you and Sister-in-law immediately.”
“Thank you, Zhengnan,” said Shentu Tianyin.
Liu Zhennan laughed. “Sister-in-law, you don’t have to be polite with me. I work for Director Xia, so I work for you too. You can just tell me if there’s anything you’d like me to do in the future.”
Shentu Tianyin said, “Hubby, can you let me borrow Zhengnan for a few days?”
Xia Lei shrugged. “No problem, you can have him for as long as needed.”
Shentu Tianyin smiled then. “That’s a promise, then.”
Xia Xue walked in at this moment. She looked at Xia Lei and Shentu Tianyin first, but her gaze quickly moved to Liu Zhengnan.
Shentu Tianyin said, “Xue, I’ll introduce you. This is your brother’s assistant, Mr. Liu Zhengnan.”
Xia Xue pursed her lips and smiled. “You don’t need to introduce us. We know each other.”
Shentu Tianyin and Xia Lei couldn’t help exchanging glances, and they were both astonished.
Xia Xue laughed and said, “Don’t forget that I’m still sort of my brother’s secretary, and I spend a lot of time at Thunder Horse Military Factory. What’s so strange about me knowing Zhengnan?”
She called him Zhengnan instead of Liu Zhengnan or Mr Liu. It was easy to see that she was familiar with Liu Zhengnan.
Liu Zhengnan’s expression became a little unusually nervous and hint of a blush appeared on his face as he stood. “Xue… Why are you here?”
Xia Xue laughed as she said, “This is my brother and my sister-in-law’s house. This is my house. Of course I’d be here.”
Liu Zhengnan laughed awkwardly. Everything he said in front of Xia Xue was dumb.
Xia Xue said, “I want to go out for a walk. Are you free?”
“Yes, yes, of course. I’ll go out on a walk with you.” Liu Zhengnan agreed immediately.
Liu Zhengnan was taken away just like that, leaving the stunned couple in the office.
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