That very afternoon, videos of Mu Jian-Feng raising his hand to slap Ye Kun’s wife accompanied by evidence of his deeds were all over a handful of online media outlets and social media platforms. It didn’t take long for the incident to become the hottest topic in town.
The heated debate over the incident was unstoppable.
No one dared to cover it up due to the widespread publicity of it!
That very night, Xia Lei received a call from Fan Fan.
“Wow, I’m impressed. You should consider switching over to the movie industry.” Fan Fan’s words had hints of ridicule but also an unconcealable delight. “Your plan had resurfaced that particular whistleblowing document. I heard that the higher-ups had formed an investigation team for this. Mu Jian-Feng has been stripped of his freedom.”
“That soon?” Xia Lei smiled. “I thought it would take a while for things to explode. I’m surprised that it only took half a day to gain full control of him.”
“You’re upset that it happened too fast?”
“Of course not. To me, another pesky bug has been taken care of. It’s a good thing.”
“Actually, the fast development of things was all thanks to your new material project. I submitted the report the other day and the higher-ups are very pleased with it. It was very stupid of them to try to mess with you now.” Fan Fan’s voice was still laced with glee.
“You contributed to this too. Oh, my phone is running out of battery, I’ll talk to you soon,” said Xia Lei.
The call was going on for too long.
“Why are you in such a rush? Are you on a date with some other beauty?”
“Is that jealousy I hear?” Xia Lei lowered his voice.
“I’ve swallowed your salty stuff, what’s new about feeling sour over you?”
“You’re with Long Bing, right?”
“No, I’m with no one. Oh crap, there’s no battery left…” With that, Xia Lei hung up. He then looked to the side of the table to watch Long Bing open a bottle of red wine. There was a slight pause before he sheepishly muttered, “She can be quite annoying at times.”
“It’s great that she helped us. I find her pretty feminine,” commented Long Bing.
“Uh, let’s not talk about her anymore. Come, let’s dig in.” Xia Lei made his way over.
Long Bing poured Xia Lei a glass of wine before doing the same for herself. After Xia Lei was seated on the opposite side of the table, Long Bing brought her glass over to sit beside him.
Xia Lei raised his glass and smiled. “Cheers, it’s been a while since I’ve eaten at your place.” He had promised to stay a night at Long Bing’s place every weekend back then but he hadn’t stuck to his promise well. Whenever he was reminded of it, he couldn’t help but feel guilty.
But Long Bing paid no mind to the broken promise. She held her glass over to touch the rim of Xia Lei’s glass before downing the lukewarm fluid. Her alcohol tolerance was as good as her shooting skills.
“Here, let me refill that for you.” Xia Lei grabbed the wine bottle and filled her glass.
Long Bing stared at Xia Lei for a bit. Abruptly, she voiced, “Am I not feminine?”
Xia Lei was a little surprised. He came nearer to her pale neck to take in a light whiff. “Why would you say that? You smell nice, I love your scent.”
Long Bing rolled her eyes at him. “Stop teasing me. I meant feminine, not my scent.”
“Huh? What do you mean?” Xia Lei was perplexed.
“I mean…” Long Bing paused for a bit to structure her thoughts. “Well, something you’d get from Fan Fan. She radiates lady-like charm and intelligence. Or probably something like Shentu Tianyin’s aura. She has this very luxurious and bright femininity.”
Xia Lei laughed. “What’s with you today? All we had was just a glass and you’re already drunk? You are who you are. If you change yourself to be like one of them, you won’t be the same Long Bing I know.”
“But I want to try it out. Change my appearance a little or something.”
“This is not the same as changing an outfit, okay?”
“Well, I can always learn.”
“There’s no need to torment yourself over thoughts like this. Let’s just continue drinking and then …” A filthy smirk appeared on Xia Lei’s face.
That smirk had triggered something within her. Immediately, Long Bing stood from her seat and walked over with a seductive twist of her waist to sit her full bottom on Xia Lei’s lap.
“You’re done with dinner already?” questioned Xia Lei.
“Don’t interrupt me.” Long Bing put her arms around his neck. She stared longingly into his eyes. “Is this feminine enough?”
“Pfft-” Xia Lei couldn’t hold his laughter in.
Long Bing sent a glare his way. “Hey! I’m serious!”
Xia Lei fell silent.
Long Bing then ground her soft ass against his crotch. “How about this? Is this feminine enough?”
Xia Lei bit his lip to hold in a burst of untimely laughter.
“You’re so mean!” Long Bing slapped his arm.
But before she could do so, he grabbed her arm and had his wicked ways with her.
The next morning, Long Bing had already left when Xia Lei woke up from his slumber. She even made him breakfast, which happened to be a very sad looking cup of Kang Shifu instant noodles.
Xia Lei sighed. “Women should treat themselves kindly. How is she able to survive with such unhealthy meals?”
Still, he wolfed down the instant noodle she left for him. After that, Xia Lei slid out his phone to call Zhou Xiaohong.
“Brother Lei Zi!” Her greeting was followed by giggles. It was as if receiving a call from Xia Lei was the best thing that happened in her life.
The village lady was very grateful. If Xia Lei hadn’t taken her in and gave her a part-time job at the workshop, she would probably still be scrubbing dishes in some random restaurant. Everything she had was all thanks to him.
“Can you do me a favour? Please help me find a good maid from your hometown. She needs to cook well and be able to care for people. Yeah, you can take it as getting hired by our company. The maid can receive her salary from our office and she just needs to take care of one person. It’s a relatively simple task, it’d just be simple cleaning and cooking,” explained Xia Lei.
“Sure, that’s not a problem. We have a lot of maids back home that are especially skilled in cooking and caring. May I know who she’ll be caring for?”
“Long Bing, you’ve met her before.”
“Oh, I got it.”
“Also, let us know when you find someone. We’ll buy her insurance. Oh right, when she comes to Jingdu, she won’t be staying at Long Bing’s place. We’ll provide her with other accommodation,” elaborated Xia Lei.
“Alright! Brother Lei Zi, when are you coming to Shu Di again? I…”
“What’s the matter?”
“I haven’t seen in ages, I miss you a lot… Uh, I don't mean anything else, I just want to see you again.” Zhou Xiaohong sounded a little nervous.
Xia Lei laughed a little. “I’m a little busy at the moment but I ‘ll come to visit Shu Di after this period is over. Please take good care of yourself, goodbye.”
“Goodbye, Brother Lei Zi.” Zhou Xiaohong’s tone was full of reluctance.
Ending his call with Zhou Xiaohong, Xia Lei then left a note for Long Bing. It wrote, ‘Please cut down on your instant noodle consumption. I hired a maid for you to help you with house chores and meals. I can’t always care for you all the time so please accept the maid I hired.’
The passion Long Bing had for him was like fire while the tenderness he had for her was like water.
Although she was a tough woman who had survived battle after battle, she was and always will be someone he needed to protect.
Returning to the Thunder Horse Military Factory, Xia Lei had just finished his discussion with Annina and Sylvia about plans for Sweeper’s mass production. Just when he was about to start about his bold idea to start designing a tank for the Thunder Horse Organization, the four Knight Hospitaller ladies made their presence known.
Sylvia and Annina left. It was only then when Xia Lei finally questioned, “What are you here for?”
“You really think we want to be here?” huffed Theresa. “We’re just here to give you the newest updates.”
Rosa closed the door to his office.
Xia Lei calmly asked, “Anything new so far?”
“Our people have already been mobilized in Siberia. They managed to wipe out FA Organization’s camp there,” said Giovanna.
Xia Lei smiled. “Ah, that’s great news.”
Stella then placed a smartphone in front of Xia Lei. A picture of a pile of corpses was displayed on its screen. He started to swipe to see the next, each picture showing a few bodies in the same frame.
It didn’t take long for him to reach the last picture. His eyes were glued to it.
The last picture had also shown a corpse. Unlike the rest, he wasn’t blasted to death. He was decapitated instead! Someone had even used his bleeding head to write on the snowy ground in Chinese- “Xia Lei, if you want to kill me, come kill me yourself! Coward!”
Despite the message being anonymous, it wasn’t hard for him to guess who wrote it. It was Dark Mona.
“This body isn’t a member of the FA organization, he’s our man. Dark Mona killed him before she escaped into the woods. They’re still searching that area. We’ll inform you when more updates are received,” said Theresa all while glaring at Xia Lei. She was still bothered by Xia Lei’s complaint that she smelt like fish. Personally, she thought the smell resembled yeast.
“Thank you.” Xia Lei returned the phone to Giovanna.
Stella then spoke up, “Mister Xia, Dark Mona is a highly trained killer. If we’re unable to kill or capture her, we hope that you’ll understand us.”
Xia Lei frowned. “Are you telling me this personally or is this what Arthur wants you to say?”
“It’s…” As Stella had begun to speak, Rosa quickly touched her waist. Stella immediately fell silent.
Xia Lei smiled. “Ah, so it’s Arthur. Tell him that to kill or capture Dark Mona was an important part of our agreement. I’m sure you know what will happen if you fail to do so, right?”
“Please help us then.” Giovanna continued, “Dark Mona is very strong. If she wants to escape, we’ll have a tough time capturing her. However, if you involve yourself in the process, she’ll make you her target and she’d come to us instead. It’ll be easier for us to do our job.”
“Did Arthur tell you to say that too?”
Giovanna gave an affirmative nod. “Yes and this is the reality of it. We’re trying to fulfil your request, it’s only reasonable that you help us out.”
Xia Lei gave it some thought before voicing out. “You may return. I’ll have to give this some thought.”
“Let’s go.” Theresa rolled her eyes at Xia Lei.
Giovanna took two steps forward before she turned her head and said, “Mister Xia, please be quick. If Dark Mona runs away now, it’ll be difficult to get our hands on her.”
Xia Lei had only returned a nod.
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