Chapter 779 - I'm a Thorn


A loud explosion echoed through the air. One-shot out of the Hell-bound Cannon had blasted the target three thousand metres away into dust. Though the target was made out of cement and stones, it was reduced to nothing with the cannon. It was also worth noting that the current in-service Type 99 Main Battle Tank had its shooting range limited to three thousand five hundred metres!

After destroying the target, the Sweeper started to zoom across the field. Its speed was so jaw-droppingly fast, so speedy that people almost forgot that it was an infantry fighting vehicle instead of a regular four-wheel drive. 

Whoosh! A target bomb flew by, aimed towards the Sweeper. Its speed was comparable to the American Javelin Anti-tank Missile. As soon as it entered Sweeper’s fifty-meter radius, the vehicle’s defence system immediately kicked in, sending out a jamming bomb in response. 

Boom! Another explosion destroyed the targeted bomb. 

It was a considerable achievement for such a reaction from a military vehicle’s defence system. Truth to be told, the most advanced of the European tanks weren’t even able to execute that. 

The performance had everyone awe-struck, hearts palpitating violently with their adrenaline at an all-time high. There was no end to the cheers resonating from the shooting range. 

The eyes of a few military representatives gleamed with excitement. They could not get enough of it. After the demonstration performance was over, they followed Shi Boren to meet Xia Lei. They showered him with praises, to which Xia Lei had responded courteously. 

“Damn kid, was that a tank or an infantry fighting vehicle?” Shi Boren’s tone was bright. He gave Xia Lei a few friendly pats on his shoulder. 

Xia Lei was used to his way of greeting. The younger male replied with a smile. “Isn’t it obvious? It’s an infantry fighting vehicle. But even if we encountered a tank on the battlefield, the Sweeper's operator will have nothing to worry about.”

“What’s even there to fear about? One-shot from it will be enough to blast the poor thing into debris,” one of the military representatives said with a smile. 

Everyone else laughed. 

Standing not far from the chattering bunch were Yu Shanhe and Ling Han, who have both been oddly quiet throughout the whole affair. Their expressions were gloomy, observing Xia Lei and the few military representatives intently.

“Mister Yu, why are you standing so far away? Come join us,” one of the representatives offered. 

Yu Shanhe went over. Ling Han hesitated but decided to not approach them in the end. 

“Mister Yu, I’m sure you’ve already seen how great the Sweeper is. I’ll just be frank with you then. When will our military troops be able to use something like that?” asked the representative that invited Yu Shanhe over as soon as the latter came close. 

A false smile found its way to Yu Shanhe’s face. “Our orders which were made to the China Industrial Group are not complete as of late. We’ll see how it goes after they’re done. A change of larger resources like military vehicles will require multiple hearings and meetings.” 

“So you’re trying to say that this won’t happen in the near future?” 

“That I’m not sure,” answered Yu Shanhe. 

“I don’t care. I only want Sweeper as the sole vehicle of the military. Nothing else matters,” said another representative. The man had his brows furrowed, anger evident from his glares. He was obviously displeased with Yu Shanhe’s pretext. 

The other representative had the same reaction. Most of the people in the military were very straightforward. They’d celebrate when they were happy and they’d curse your entire family when they were angry. Basically, they were blunt to a fault. 

Yu Shanhe calmly reasoned with him. “This really is no small matter. Even if I were to order a quantity of it from Thunder Horse Organization now, it wouldn’t count as it’s not a decision made by the majority. Aside from that, there’s no guarantee to the quality of mass-produced Sweepers. I cannot confirm that the mass-produced model would have the same specifications as the prototype. So, If we want to use the Sweeper, it’d need to go through a series of strict tests before we can evaluate its feasibility before submitting relevant results to the committee then followed by hearings.” 

At that point, Shi Boren frowned. He was getting irritated. 

Yu Shanhe turned to look at Xia Lei. “Mister Xia, are you confident that your product can survive strict evaluations?” 

Xia Lei calmly responded, “Officer Yu, our company practises extremely strict quality control protocols to guarantee that our customers will enjoy high-quality products. If the Sweeper had cleared our evaluation, it would also indicate that it passed all relevant protocols.” 

Yu Shanhe’s smiled eerily. “Easier said than done. I wonder if the results will reflect your confidence.” 

Xia Lei forced a smile. “Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. You get to choose if you want to order them or not. However, I am not worried if you’d order them or not. You see, when I debuted the Sweeper at the Parc des Expositions de Villepinte in Paris, a lot of countries were desperate enough to make orders I couldn’t refuse. Without your orders, I’d be able to satisfy the international market. Who wouldn’t say no to a higher profit margin?”

The odd smile fell from Yu Shanhe’s face. 

Xia Lei continued, “Sweeper is at least fifteen years more advanced than the current models. Getting orders is the last thing from my mind right now” 

“Hmph,” snorted Yu Shanhe. “You really think you’re selling groceries, huh? Let’s see how well your sales performance will be like.”

“Haha,” Xia Lei laughed. “Officer Yu, let me advise you on something. Think before you act or you’ll definitely regret it. I’d like to see you try and stop us from selling them. If all things fail, I’ll close down my factory. That’d certainly be your best case scenario, right? You’ve always wanted me out of the business. So yeah, let’s place a bet. If you could hinder my business, I’ll shut down my factory. If I succeed, you resign. How’s that?” 

Xia Lei’s bold words surprised Shi Boren and the military representatives. They were shocked by his guts. Him, a private enterprise owner had challenged someone of Yu Shanhe’s position to resign!  

“Disrespectful brat!” fumed Yu Shanhe. 

But Xia Lei’s calm smile remained on his lips, completely unfazed by Yu Shanhe’s outburst. 

“Alright, that’s enough.” Shi Boren quickly stepped in to diffuse the tension. “No matter who we are and what we work as, we’re all contributing to the country. All Thunder Horse Organization weapons quality ones and their newly launched Sweeper infantry fighting vehicle are fifteen years more advanced than models used in the west. This is something we should celebrate.”

Yu Shanhe’s expression was scarily dark. He didn’t dare to agree to the bet because he was fully aware that there was no way to stop Thunder Horse Organization from pushing Sweeper into the international market. Weapon tax was very high so the Thunder Horse Organization would surely earn immense profit from foreign currency exchange. Also, Sweeper would help China conquer the international military firearm market. This would be a good deed to the country, who would dare to hinder that? Anyone who dared to stop them will be done for! 

The older male was more concerned about the relationship between Fan Fan and Xia Lei. Xia Lei was the one who helped Fan Fan become ZN Station’s leader. In other words, they were on the same boat. With Fan Fan’s current position and ability, if she wanted to snitch on Yu Shanhe, it’d be as easy as calling for delivery! If Yu Shanhe wasn’t truly guilty, the situation would still be under control. But he wasn’t. If Fan Fan uses that against him, his life would be ruined. 

Though Shi Boren had come to diffuse the situation, Xia Lei opened his mouth to speak once again. “Officer Yu, will you accept this bet?” 

Shi Boren who had initially fallen silent couldn’t take it anymore. He was this close to kicking Xia Lei into the next week! He had done his best to have Yu Shanhe calm down but this dumb kid had gone to slap the tiger’s butt again! 

But Xia Lei was fully aware of what he was doing. He wanted to show Yu Shanhe that he was no longer afraid of him! 

Yu Shanhe was so mad that he started to cackle. “Xia Lei, you really think that someone like me would go along with your silly bet? You’re too full of yourself. You’re a young man with great ambition. But be warned, great joy begets great sorrow” 

With that, Yu Shanhe turned to leave. 

Xia Lei yelled after him, “Officer Yu, there’s a banquet later. Why don’t you leave after a meal?”

Yu Shanhe ignored him. 

Shi Boren landed his palm on Xia Lei’s shoulder with a hard smack. “Why are you so desperate to mess with him?” reprimanded Shi Boren. 

Xia Lei only smiled at that. “This country and its people are advancing. But there are people who hinder its progress with petty reasons. I want the Thunder Horse Organization to be bigger and better. I want it to be competent enough to challenge the powerhouses in the west so I must get through this obstacle. I’m not trying to humiliate or go against anyone by doing so. I just want to remind them to not be a nuisance to the development of our country and the Thunder Horse Organization.” 

“Well said. Some people should just take the cue and stop being so arrogant,” said one of the representatives. 

“People should really stand up in situations like this. Well done, Mister Xia! You have my full support,” another representative said. 

Someone had to step up and say ‘No’ and Xia Lei was that someone. 

Meanwhile, Ling Han said, “Old Mu, Director Ye, did you see that? I’m sure you can imagine what will happen to us when Xia Lei makes it big. He’s already treating Officer Yu with such an outrageous attitude. What must be done, must be done. A private enterprise can’t cause any damage to you both, right?”

He didn’t need to say anything else as his hint was obvious enough. 

Mu Jian-Feng and Ye Kun had been in the workforce for a while. They had fully understood his intentions. The two stared at each other, not giving an immediate response. 

“I’m going to leave now. If you need anything, just call me.” Ling Han walked away from the two. 

Ling Han trailed behind Yu Shanhe. Ye Kun waited until Ling Han was out of sight to ask, “Teacher, are we really going to do that?”

“Do we even have a choice?” 

Ye Kun smiled bitterly. “Since it’s decided, there’s no turning back now. Let’s find the best opportunity to approach him.” 

Mu Jian-Feng replied, “Isn’t there a banquet later? I believe then would be best.” 

“Alright. So… who’s going to…”

Mu Jian-Feng frowned. “Don’t tell me you’re trying to have me initiate it.”

“Ah, you sly fox.” Ye Kun secretly scolded in his heart with a smile still plastered on his face. “How could I make my most respected teacher initiate it? Please rest assured, I’ll approach him later.”

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