An ear piercing siren sounded. Shouts came from outside the office building. People were running and everything was in a chaotic mess.
Ling Han and Yu Shanhe also dashed towards the window to see what happened. Thick smoke was surging out of the villa, and the Special Forces soldiers guarding the area were in a panic. It was clear that there was an explosion, but nobody knew what exactly had happened.
“Mr Xia, what’s going on?” Yu Shanhe quickly recovered.
Xia Lei drew close to the window to take a look too. His voice was filled with astonishment when he said, “What? How did my villa explode?”
He deliberately emphasised the words, ‘my villa’, perhaps to remind the people in the office that it was his villa. It wasn’t some other person’s, and it especially wasn’t the government’s.
“You....” Fan Fan stared at Xia Lei blankly for a long time before she said, “You actually made my laboratory explode!”
“Was it me who made your laboratory explode?” Xia Lei’s voice was neither warm or cold: “Would I make my own villa explode? It’s worth several million.”
“Xia Lei!” Ling Han was finally lost his temper. He roared at Xia Lei “How dare you!”
Xia Lei smiled. “You guys are finally dropping the act, one by one. You’re falling out with me, aren’t you?”
“Xia Lei, do you think I won’t dare to teach you a lesson?” Ling Han scowled.
Xia Lei was still very calm. “Of course you’d dare to. However, I’m also not a rabbit that can be easily stepped on. A rabbit will bite when it’s forced into a corner too. So, if you want to teach me a lesson, just try it.”
If Ling Han was going to turn hostile, Xia Lei wouldn’t let him win. He would also lay his cards out on the table.
“Xia Lei, did you call us out here just for this?” Yu Shanhe could still restrain himself, but the expression on his face could not be any colder.
Xia Lei laughed. “Yep, I called you out here just for this. I want to let you know what kind of person I, Xia Lei, am, and where my bottom line is.”
Everyone in the room stared at Xia Lei.
Xia Lei’s gaze fell on Ling Han and he said, “Mr Z. Bureau ZN’s Mr Z. I didn’t name the wrong person, did I?”
Ling Han was frozen with shock. He had been hiding his identity from the beginning and was sure that he didn’t make any mistakes. Yet, Xia Lei had just revealed his true identity!
Xia Lei’s gaze then went to Fan Fan. “Fan Fan, I don’t know your codename in Bureau ZN, but I know your’s and Mr Z’s positions are the same, no?”
Fan Fan moved her lips as if to say something, but she said nothing in the end.
Xia Lei went on talking. “You and Mr Z really performed a good act together. I was also deceived by you guys. But because of the position of Bureau Chief, you guys messed up. If it wasn’t for you and Mr Z contesting each other for your own benefits and meddling with this, I also wouldn’t have discovered your identities. You could have continued to stay with me and to deceive me… Wouldn't that be nice?”
The expression on Ling Han’s face was ugly.
According to Bureau ZN’s original plan, Fan Fan would be hidden by Xia Lei’s side with Song Bai’s shielding. That plan was carried out beautifully; the execution could even be called perfect. Following the plan, they would be able to dig up Xia Lei’s secrets. However, at this critical juncture, Bureau ZN’s Chief announced his retirement. He and Fan Fan fought for political capital to be promoted, and thus interfered with the merging of Thunder Horse Military Factory, China Industrial Group, and Hanwu weapons, which led to the current result.
“You… When did you discover my identity?” asked Fan Fan. Her voice was weak.
Xia Lei smiled. “At first, I thought that it was Ms. Su who was competing with Mr Z, but your act of injuring yourself to gain the enemy’s confidence was too fake. It would be hard to not see through it.”
In fact, he had become suspicious of her when he read the original report that Su Xiao gave him. Later, when he saw that Fan Fan had been attacked in the laboratory, he used his zoom-in vision to see the traces left there and used that to confirm her identity. From start to finish, Su Xiao was just a doormat, a scapegoat. Su Xiao’s status in Bureau ZN was at most, Song Bai’s level, and the only difference was that she was under Fan Fan, while Song Bai worked for Ling Han.
Fan Fan was silent. She had nothing to say. Her feelings were in a complicated mess.
“Mr Xia, you think that you’re safe now? You’re wrong. You’ll regret this!” Su Xiao reached into her pockets and fished around, but didn’t pull out anything. She abruptly pointed at Xia Lei, and shouted angrily, “You stole my phone!”
Xia Lei spread out his hands. “You said I stole your phone?” He paused for a moment before laughing. “I have a net worth of billions. Why would I steal your phone? What’s your annual salary? I’ll give you ten times the amount to come and clean the toilets at my company.”
“You—!” Su Xiao’s face turned blue from anger and humiliation.
“Or how about I send you a hundred Apple phones. All you have to do is apologise,” said Xia Lei.
Fan Fan then took out her phone and checked it. Her expression changed right away. “Xia Lei, you stole my phone’s memory card!”
“Is there something wrong with your brains? One is saying that I stole her phone and the other is saying I stole her memory card. Do you have evidence? If you don’t have evidence-” Xia Lei suddenly roared, “Then SHUT THE FUCK UP!”
The room suddenly fell silent, so silent you could hear a pin drop.
It wasn’t because of Xia Lei’s words, or because they were scared of Xia Lei, but the opposite. They couldn't believe that Xia Lei had actually dared to swear at them!
The one they had viewed as prey, and moreover, prey that was hunted by the whole pack, had actually dared to snarl at them, the hunters!
The reason why the prey had dared to snarl at the hunters was because he had already secretly destroyed the hunters’ weapons. He had played with Fan Fan’s body for most of last night and had secretly gotten rid of her cell phone’s memory card which contained the original report when she was too exhausted to notice. Just ten minutes ago, when he approached Su Xiao, he used the chance to steal her phone as it also contained a picture of the original report. As for where the USB drive came from, and who had copied the data, he had an answer for that too. It was Fan Fan. The USB drive had Fan Fan’s fingerprints.
With Su Xiao’s identity, there was no way Fan Fan would really let her have something as important as the original report. Even if she gave it to Su Xiao, she would’ve most likely prohibited her from downloading a copy. Therefore, all he needed to do was bomb the laboratory, steal Fan Fan’s memory card and Su Xiao’s phone, and destroy the USB drive to make the report disappear.
Now what did Fan Fan and Su Xiao have to threaten him?
And even if Fan Fan still had a copy of the original report, he still wouldn’t be scared. This wasn’t his only way to counterattack!
“Xia Lei! I don’t care what happened between you and Bureau ZN, I just have one thing to say. Are you signing the contract or not!” Yu Shanhe finally couldn’t hold it in any longer. He got angry.
Xia Lei walked to the desk and turned on the desktop screen before turning it over to let Yu Shanhe, Mu Jianfeng, and the others see what was on it.
The computer monitor showed the two core workshops of the Thunder Horse Military Factory. The first was the first generation Thunder Dragon Intelligent Lathe’s core workshop and the other was the second generation Thunder Dragon Intelligent Lathe’s. Neither of the workshops had any people inside but regardless of which machine it was, the complete lathe or the incomplete one, both of them were strapped with explosives.
The image on the screen suddenly changed to a womanly-looking man holding a remote control in his hand. He faced the camera with a smile.
“You, you actually want to bomb your own lathe!” Mu Jianfeng stuttered. Even the finger he was pointing at Xia Lei was trembling.
Xia Lei said softly, “Even you said it’s my lathe, so why can’t I bomb it?”
Yu Shanhe shouted angrily, “How dare you!”
Xia Lei’s calm voice turned cold. “Do I dare to bomb it? Good question. Why don’t we make a bet? If you say the word ‘dare’ one more time, I’ll have my guy detonate it immediately.”
“You…” Yu Shanhe pointed at Xia Lei, but he did not utter the word ‘dare’.
If Xia Lei really did explode the world’s sole two most advanced intelligent lathes, who would dare to assume responsibility for it? Furthermore, only Xia Lei could make the two intelligent lathes! If Xia Lei blew the two up and didn’t make any more, China’s military would once again fall behind Europe and America’s by a large margin. If this happened, then wouldn’t they be the ones blamed by the higher-ups?
Actually, when all was said and done, Xia Lei’s trump card, and all of his power were all his own capabilities. He was the only person who could build the Thunder Dragon Intelligent Lathe and raise the military to a new standard. To a certain degree, it could be said that his worth was directly tied with benefits for the country. Who would dare to mess with him!
Mr Z, Fan Fan, Yu Shanhe… Who cared? When he was patient, he would seem polite and modest. After all, that’s what society was like. Citizens did not fight with the government. He also abided by such regulations. But if they crossed his bottom line and all pretenses of cordiality were shed, he would spare no one’s dignity!
“You don’t dare to bet with me?” Xia Lei smiled coldly. “I can destroy my intelligent lathe any time I want, and go abroad to build my factories. As long as I have my hands, I can build a third and a fourth Thunder Dragon Intelligent Lathe to make a comeback at any time. But if you guys fail, then it would be hard to crawl back up in your lifetime.”
Yu Shanhe’s face was ashen. He couldn’t say anything.
“I’ll give you one minute to get the hell out. If you don’t, I’ll explode my lathe. The XL2500 sniper rifle and Gust assault rifle, as well as all the advanced tech I have will disappear here.” Xia Lei looked at his watch. “I’ll start counting now. It’s already been ten seconds.”
Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun both looked at Yu Shanhe.
Yu Shanhe gritted his teeth, and his voice was brimming with hatred. “Let’s go!”
Mu Jianfeng and Ye Kun followed Yu Shanhe and left.
Ling Han pointed at Xia Lei. “You really have guts. Very well.” After saying this, he also left.
Fan Fan and Su Xiao didn’t say anything as they walked towards the office door.
Xia Lei suddenly called out, “Fan Fan, hold on.”
Fan Fan turned to look at Xia Lei. “What do you want to say now?”
Xia Lei said, “The Alloy X Project still needs your help. If you’re still willing, you can come look for me at any time.”
Fan Fan was stunned. “You… still want to collaborate?”
“Only for the Alloy X Project. I don’t want to be treated like a guinea pig again by anybody.” Xia Lei paused for a second before continuing, “You should understand what I mean.”
Fan Fan nodded and left.
Xia Lei let out a long sigh.
The reason why he still wanted Fan Fan to do the Alloy X Project wasn’t because of her abilities, but because he wanted to balance it out. He had already torn apart Ling Han’s friendship. If he made Fan Fan an enemy on top of that, then it would be equal to becoming enemies with the entire Bureau ZN. That wasn’t an outcome he wanted. By exposing Fan Fan’s identity and then extending out an olive branch, helping her against Ling Han, he would be able to get another ally in Bureau ZN.
No matter the situation, an extra friend is always better than an extra enemy.
Furthermore, although the original report was already destroyed, Fan Fan still knew some of his secrets. He was roping her in to keep those secrets a secret.
Fan Fan’s nod of the head had actually been her expressing her agreement.Previous Chapter Next Chapter