Chapter 832 - True Protagonist of This Era!

The meeting was done separately. Fan Fan had entered a smaller room for a meeting with the authorities. Though so, a high ranking leader and a few military representatives were present at the bigger meeting to play an important part as hosts.  


The hosting figures gave their speeches one after another, earning rounds of applause at each end. The attendees were rather proactive, creating an unexpectedly comfortable atmosphere. There were some reporters but they were all situated a distance away, silently recording the meeting. 

This was the first time Xia Lei had attended something like this, the format and atmosphere were completely unfamiliar to him. Thankfully, the leaders were done with their speeches within an hour. Leaving the remaining time for each invited representatives of the military industry. 

Each of them had come prepared with a well-written speech. Their content was all structured along the lines of determination and their keenness towards eliminating obstacles and so on to produce achievements. Essentially, they were merely repeating one another. There was no point in paying attention to their words. 

Ye Kun had also readied a script for himself, which happened to be a shocking length. While waiting for his turn, the man had frantically flipped through the papers thrice for good measure. He looked nervous but it was obvious that Ye Kun had taken this very seriously. 

Soon enough, it was Ye Kun’s turn. He kept away the script and picked up the mic. His overall expression and tone were appropriate for the setting, not forgetting to let emphasize certain points with great emotions. The speech and mannerism were constructed in a way that made him overflow with positivity as if the man was immune to all toxicity of society. However, Ye Kun’s speech was no different from the others before him. 

Xia Lei couldn’t help but think to himself. “Though his words were similar to the ones before, Ye Kun actually made the effort to recite his script without reference. He’s filled with confidence in a room of people beating him down. He was certainly proving himself useful for survival.” 

No applause was given after Ye Kun’s speech. Taking his seat, Ye Kun raised a palm to wipe at the sweat that had formed on his forehead. He wasn’t the least bit surprised at the lack of response but the silence was still unsettling. 

The meeting host continued the segment. “Now, let’s hear from the representative of China Industrial Group.” 

Ling Han stood up with firm confidence. “Good day to all leaders and my fellow comrades, I’m the representative of China Industrial Group and I’ll be talking about a few things…” 

Ling Han began to talk but Xia Lei was largely taken aback. It was merely an hour ago when Ye Kun mentioned to him about Yu Shanhe’s intention of having Ling Han replace Mu Jianfeng. It was a shocker to find Ling Han speaking at the meeting as a person in charge of the China Industrial Group.

 “The reason behind the technology suppression from Europe and America is obvious, but our military production standards have been showing steady improvement over the years. The gap between us is getting smaller.” 

Suddenly, Xia Lei could feel Ling Han’s eyes on him. There was a sharp change to his tone. “We have no need for heroes in this industry. What we truly require is a firm foundation. What is the foundation, you may ask? In my opinion, it is all representatives invited to this esteemed meeting that lines the base for our country’s strong defence. Though we had opened up one part of our military industry to the people, it doesn’t mean an opportunity to monopolize the entire industry. Don’t get me wrong, competition is beneficial to stimulate market activity. However, the bad competition must be halted as it brings harm to us all. Some businesses who have already gotten their hands on good technique but had selfishly decided to keep it away from reach. Now, that is not a good approach to the development of China’s military industry…”  

Xia Lei could feel his brows scrunched up. Although Ling Han had not mentioned ‘Thunder Horse Organization’ or ‘Xia Lei’, the man was aware that Ling Han’s words were directed towards him. 

Refusal to share newly-acquired good techniques? If that was detrimental to the development of the industry, what use would there be for patents and trade secrets? Microsoft had dominated almost the entire market of the computer operating system. Apple was the biggest smartphone producer in the world and runs on its own iOS system along with its countless patented technology. You wouldn’t catch them sharing it to Xiaomi and Huawei, no?   

Ling Han’s words didn’t make much sense but it was said with a sense of righteousness. It was almost as if Ling Han was the epitome of justice and was the representative of the benefits of the people. 

A round of applause rang. 

Ling Han nodded to express gratitude. He continued, “The China Industrial Group is a big organization that is of utmost importance to the country. We’re willing to shoulder the mass burden of this era for the sake of revitalizing China’s military sector. We, the China Industrial Group, will do our best to finish up all chariots ordered and channel more resources into our research. Our new generation ZTZ100 tank project is already in its works. I’m certain it’ll be China’s best tank. This is a gift from us to the country. No export models will be made for the tank and it will only be supplied to our own military troupes, unlike the overly-marketized private military sector. We won’t be allowing outsiders to take advantage of our resources. Of course, this isn’t directed at anyone. This is the end of my speech, thank you for your attention.” 

A ZTZ100 main battle tank? It was bold for the China Industrial Group to start a new generation tank project at such a sensitive time. They were obviously coming after the Thunder Horse Organization. 

Yet another round of enthusiastic applause was given. 

Ling Han’s newfound identity as the leading figure of the group would certainly bring bigger troubles to Thunder Horse Organization. Not to mention, the man was slick and smart. Ling Han was much more of a threat than Mu Jianfeng was. The first thing he did on stage was to set Thunder Horse Organization ablaze. Albeit faced with a particularly sticky situation, Xia Lei still had on a bright sunny smile. 

Xia Lei thought to himself. “It’s commendable that you wish to stop us at this stage, your determination is strong. But I think you may have forgotten the implication of my presence here. Is there really no one here who noticed it? My era is here. I’m the true protagonist of this era.” 

It really was like that sometimes. The truth was planted right in front of them, all they needed to do was to look closely. Sadly, most would’ve had their judgement blinded by interest and other unworldly desires. They refused to learn of the truth and even refused to take a single glance at it. 

Finally, the host announced, “Next, let us have the next speaker, Mister Xia Lei from the Thunder Horse Organization.” 

Everyone’s attention was immediately on Xia Lei. 

Ye Kun, who was sitting beside Xia Lei couldn’t help but feel nervous as he noticed that the man hadn’t prepared a single script for his speech! He whispered lowly, “Director Xia, how could you not prepare a script for such an important meeting?!” 

Xia Lei picked up the mic in front of him. In a gentle tone, he spoke, “Good day to all leaders and my fellow colleagues. I am honoured to have been given the opportunity to represent the  Thunder Horse Organization. This is my first time attending such a significant meeting. I hope you’ll forgive me for my inexperience.” 

A handful of people looked at him arrogantly. Seemingly unimpressed with his choice of words. 

Xia Lei ignored them and continued. “I’m not a man of words, but I’m a man who delivers. From humble beginnings, Thunder Horse Organization has been able to get to this point firmly all thanks to the contributions of all staff involved. The same goes to our weapons, from the XL2500 sniper rifle to the gust assault rifle and the Hell-bound One Soldier Cannon and to the Sweeper infantry fighting vehicle. Everything we produce is top class. I’m proud to say that our works are remarkable in all aspects of their kind. Even the western military giants are no match against us. In the past, we had relied heavily on imports of finished parts but now, even the Europeans and Americans are after the Thunder Horse’s Thunder Dragon intelligent lathe.”

The mass envy towards Thunder Horse Organization’s weapons and both generations of the Thunder Dragon intelligent lathe was a fact. Xia Lei had even exchanged his technology on weapons and the intelligent lathe for Germany’s Typhoon fighter engine technology and France’s Rafale avionics technology. Though the nature of this information had stopped any disclosure, no one could obliterate Xia Lei’s contribution!

Clap. Clap. Clap. The leaders started to clap for Xia Lei. 

Initially, not a single applause was given. Under the leaders prompt, there was a sudden intensity to the round of applause. A majority of the attendees were very unwilling to acknowledge Xia Lei’s words. The man was essentially boasting in public. Instead of a clap, the others were much keen on giving him a slap. 

Truthfully, the acknowledgement given by the leaders through applause was an obvious hint. Sadly, a lot of them were still reluctant to learn the truth, remaining blind by their personal interests and lusts. 

“Thank you, thank you.” Xia Lei continued, “As you all know, Thunder Horse Organization is a private-owned business. But it is still an enterprise that contributes to this country. We produce weapons for our military so that our country has the best the world has to offer. We export our products to boost our economy. All we could do a few years back was outsource our weapons by stretching our funds. But we have come a long way since then. Now our products are the highest in demand. What does this indicate? This indicates that we’re now much stronger than before. Our time has come. Boldly speaking, Thunder Horse Organization does not fit in the classifications of public or private enterprises. All our actions were unintentionally aligned with the needs of this era. It’s just a mere coincidence that we became the protagonist of this era!” 

Heated discussions soon erupted in the quiet hall. 

No one had expected Xia Lei to display such a lofty stance! 

A private-run military enterprise as the protagonist of this era? Only Xia Lei had the courage to say shit like that. 

This time, there was no applause. 

Clearing his throat, Xia Lei explained. “I’m not trying to show off our achievements here. I’m just utilizing this opportunity to voice out my true opinions. I’m very confident that the Thunder Horse Organization could be the Lockheed Martin of China. However, it’s evident that my efforts alone are not sufficient. What we require is your support and trust, no more of this petty suppression and alienation.” 

“Mister Xia, what are you trying to say?” Yu Shanhe decided he had enough of this. 

“Yeah, your remarks are unnecessarily mean.” 

“How could he say things like that?” 

“Private owned is in the end, privately owned. How could he not know the basic rules? Where the hell does he think he’s speaking at?” 

Xia Lei proceeded to ignore them all. The venue showed no signs of calming down so Xia Lei picked up his volume. “I don’t mean to offend anyone but I only speak the truth. Export orders for the Sweeper infantry fighting vehicle had Thunder Horse Military Factory tied for the whole of next year, yet we have not received any orders for our best domestic models. Could anyone of you present here provide me with an answer to that?” 

Suddenly, everyone went silent. 

Ye Kun was relieved of Xia Lei’s prior statement and he was genuinely impressed by Xia Lei’s public speaking skills. However, the bold question that came out of Xia Lei’s mouth had him sweating beads of cold droplets on his forehead again. 

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