The person Xia Lei thought of was like Ling Han, a person from ZN Bureau.
If he had not used his X-ray vision on that tea room earlier and used his lip-reading ability to “eavesdrop” on their private conversation, he would not have known what Ling Han’s motives to get involved in this matter were, and about this woman being his rival.
However, whether this short-haired woman in front of him was from ZN Bureau and Ling Han’s rival were just guesses, and he had no evidence.
The short-haired woman’s eyes met Ling Han’s, then moved to Xia Lei.
It was their first time meeting, and they didn’t know each other, so Xia Lei avoided her gaze and pretended to look at Tang Yuyan’s breasts. He wanted to appear like a bit of a cad, and it would be even better if she underestimated him.
However, when Xia Lei put on a perverted face to peek at Tang Yuyan’s breasts, the woman smiled faintly and greeted him. “Is this Mr Xia?”
Xia Lei then glanced at the short-haired woman and smiled. He said politely, “Yes. I’m Xia Lei. And who might you be, Miss…?”
The short-haired woman stretched out a hand to Xia Lei. “Su Xiao. Nice to meet you, Mr Xia.”
Su Xiao. This was Xia Lei’s first time hearing this name.
“Ah, Miss Su. Hello, nice to meet you.” Xia Lei shook hands with Su Xiao.
A smile hung in the corners of Su Xiao’s lips. “China’s Father of Rifles, a global-level top machinist and electrical engineer. You are so young and your life is already so illustrious. I’d wanted to meet for quite a while now, and I finally have the opportunity to do so today.”
“You’re too kind, Miss Su.” Xia Lei held on to Su Xiao’s hand, and seemed very warm.
Tang Yuyan kicked Xia Lei under the table, and he let go of her hand only then.
“May I ask what line of work you’re in, Miss Su?”
Su Xiao gave a laugh. “Do you ask women what work they do whenever you meet them, Mr Xia?”
Xia Lei smiled and said, “Please don’t misunderstand. I just want to get to know you better, Miss Su. We might become friends more quickly.”
“I work for the government. I’m sorry, but I can only tell you this much,” said Su Xiao.
Xia Lei had not hoped that Su Xiao would tell him her true identity, of course, but he was already about 60% certain that this Su Xiao was from ZN Bureau.
When Xia Lei seated himself again, Tang Yuyan nudged his thigh with her knee and whispered, “Just shake hands if you’re shaking hands. What do you mean by holding on to her hand for so long?”
Xia Lei took it in his stride and lowered his voice too. “Do you know this Su Xiao?”
“Who invited her?”
Tang Yuyan paused, then said, “Well, it wasn’t me. What are you asking me this for?”
“I’d like to know her background. Can you help me ask your family who invited this Su Xiao?” said Xia Lei.
Tang Yuyan was no ordinary woman. She could tell that there was something wrong with this woman when Xia Lei said something like that. She nodded, then stood and left.
She returned when the banquet started, and drew close to Xia Lei’s ear to say softly, “No one invited her, and we can’t find any information on her either.”
Xia Lei’s heart thumped, and he thought, ‘Could this be that woman from the ZN Bureau? But she came to meet me right in front of Ling Han. What is her motive in doing that?’
“Just what trouble have you got yourself into?” said Tang Yuyan softly. “That Song Baicheng you asked me to investigate the last time was the same situation too. And now there’s this Su Xiao. Tell me, what can I help you do?”
“Don’t bother about this matter anymore. You can’t help even if you want to,” said Xia Lei.
Tang Yuyan gave a small pout, but didn’t say anything more.
Xia Lei looked at Su Xiao out of the corner of his eye and discovered her meeting gazes with Ling Han. The two of them had not exchanged a word so far and were like strangers. However, from how they looked at each other, Ling Han and Su Xiao were definitely not strangers meeting for the first time.
The banquet started and Xia Lei drank a few glasses of wine with Ling Han, and chatted for a bit. Su Xiao did not seek him out to chat again. She only ate a little and left.
“Brother Ling, do you know this Su Xiao person?” Xia Lei asked Ling Han after she left.
Ling Han shook his head. “No, I don’t. It’s our first time meeting.” He then laughed. “What are you planning on doing? This Su Xiao can’t be compared to Yuyan. Listen to me — you should just be with Yuyan in a steady relationship.”
Xia Lei just smiled.
Tang Yuyan seemed very happy, and poured Ling Han more alcohol.
The banquet was still ongoing when Xia Lei received a call. It was from an unknown number. He hesitated, but still picked up.
“Hello, who’s this?”
“Mr Xia. I’m waiting for you outside.” It was Su Xiao’s voice. She only said that one line, then hung up.
Xia Lei put his phone away. “Excuse me, I have something on so I’ll be leaving now.”
“What is it?” asked Tang Yuyan.
“Company matters,” said Xia Lei.
“It’s fine, go on and tend to your company matters. Men should always prioritise their career,” said Ling Han.
“I’ll spend more time with you another day, Brother Ling.” Xia Lei didn’t say more, and left.
Tang Yuyan looked unhappy, but couldn’t find a good reason to make him stay.
Xia Lei looked about when he walked out of the building, and soon saw Su Xiao in the car park. She was standing next to a black Hongqi car, watching him with a smile that did not look like a smile. He walked towards her.
“What did you call me out here for, Miss Su?” Xia Lei went straight to the point.
“Get in the car. We’ll talk inside,” said Su Xiao.
“Then let’s get in my car,” said Xia Lei.
“No problem,” said Su Xiao.
Xia Lei got into his Chevrolet Suburban, and Su Xiao got into the passenger seat. Xia Lei drove his car out of the car park and onto the streets, then drove in the direction of Thunder Horse Military Factory. He waited till the Sheraton Hotel disappeared from view, then said, “May we speak now? Miss Su.”
“Sure. I’ll be frank,” said Su Xiao. “You are in trouble now, and I can help you solve your problem.”
“Are you talking about the loans?” Xia Lei laughed. “You sure are kind-hearted, but no thanks. I can solve my own money problems.”
“Mr Xia, do I look like someone who can get you a loan of 20 billion?” said Su Xiao with a smile.
Xia Lei paused. “If it’s not about the loans, then… You say I’m in trouble. What trouble is it?”
“And Long Bing.”
Xia Lei frowned. “Just what are you trying to get at? And how do you know Fan Fan and Long Bing?”
“I have my ways,” said Su Xiao.
“Who the hell are you?”
“I told you. I work for the government. I can only tell you this much.” Su Xiao changed the topic. “You might not know what trouble you’re in, so I’ll tell you. Fan Fan has handed in the report on you. And Long Bing. Long Bing is currently under investigation.”
Xia Lei’s heart sank. Fan Fan knew about his body. She did not know 100% of it, but she knew at least 50% of it , and that was enough to get him into a huge amount of trouble. What he could not figure out was that he had already successfully seduced Fan Fan, so how is it that she had betrayed him?
“You say Long Bing is under investigation. Why?” asked Xia Lei.
“Because of you,” said Su Xiao. “Don’t you get it? She is your woman, so she cannot be uninvolved in some things. The next step might involve Liang Siyao. If anything happens to her, it’ll be because of you.”
Xia Lei’s gaze instantly turned to ice. “Are you threatening me?”
“Don’t misunderstand, Mr Xia. I’m here to help you, not threaten you.”
Xia Lei scoffed. “Help me? Hah. Speak. What do you want from me?”
“I’ll tell you only after you believe me,” said Su Xiao. “Stop over here. Let me out of the car.”
Xia Lei stepped on the brakes, and stopped the car by the side of the road.
Su Xiao opened the door and alighted, then put a USB drive on the dashboard. “Take this back and have a look at it yourself. Confirm the situation, then give me a call. It’s the number from earlier. I’ll wait for your call.”
Xia Lei moved his car forward, but his eyes were fixed on the back mirror. In the mirror, Su Xiao smiled and gestured for him to call her. He then looked at the USB drive, worried.
Su Xiao disappeared from view. Xia Lei took out his phone and dialled Long Bing’s number.
“The number you have just dialled has been turned off. Please try again later…”
Xia Lei smashed the phone into the sofa of the passenger seat. It was at this moment that he experienced the expression “he who comes is surely ill-intentioned, and no one well-meaning will come”. This Su Xiao was, in all likelihood, that woman from ZN Bureau. She did not say what she wanted but it was sure to be the same as what Ling Han wanted — to take down Thunder Horse Military Factory, and add to the advancement of her career!
He couldn’t help comparing her and Ling Han. Compared to Ling Han, this woman was more vicious, and her methods were harsher too!
Back in Thunder Horse Military Factory, Xia Lei went straight to his office, and stuck the USB drive Su Xiao had given him into a computer.
There was a document on the drive, and a video.
Xia Lei opened the document, and was thunderstruck. This was the undoctored version of Fan Fan’s report on his body. The numbers in the document were startling, especially his IQ of 998.
‘What’s going on?’ Xia Lei was stunned. ‘I saw with my own eyes that Fan Fan has changed every single number in the data fields. This original copy should have been destroyed long ago too. Why has it appeared in Su Xiao’s hands? Did Fan Fan really betray me and hand in the original report to ZN Bureau?’
That thought made flames roar in Xia Lei’s heart.
He’d sworn that he would never be fooled by a woman again after his divorce, but he had been lied to again.
Xia Lei opened the video.
Long Bing was sitting in a closed room in the video. There was no one interrogating her. She was facing the camera, and her eyes were dull from exhaustion.
The video was very short, and there was nothing else in it.
Xia Lei put the USB drive away and left the office. He headed to the villa.Previous Chapter Next Chapter