Chapter 842 - The Rocky Boat of Love

“You’re here for Xia Lei…?” Shi Boren was nervous. His heart raced. “Is Xia Leiin some kind of deep trouble?” 

Officer Zhou decided to not elaborate the situation to Shi Boren, choosing to come straight to stand in front of Xia Lei. 

Immediately, almost everyone stood up from their seat. Xia Lei included. 

“You must be Xia Lei, right?” There was a smile on Officer Zhou’s face, his tone immediately softened from its prior state. 

Xia Lei nodded in a daze. “Yes. What can I help you with, Officer Zhou?”

Officer Zhou flashed him a gentle smile. “I’m here to have a heart-to-heart talk with you.” 

“Heart-to-heart talk?” 

“Yeah, that’s right.” Officer Zhou then gestured. “Please take a seat, there’s no need to stand up.” 

“Officer Zhou, please make yourself comfortable.” Tang Tianlong hurriedly went to move over a rattan chair for Officer Zhou. 

Zhang Yumei and Tang Yuyan wasted no time to make tea for Officer Zhou and his men without assistance from the waiter. 

“Officer Zhou, please have some tea.” Done with his tea, Tang Yuyan carefully placed the cup in front of Officer Zhou. 

“Mm.” Officer Zhou only nodded as an acknowledgement and looked straight at Xia Lei. “Xia Lei, I’m here not to talk about business but some very personal matters.” 

Courteously, Xia Lei replied, “Officer Zhou, please do tell.” 

Officer Zhou pulled Xia Lei’s hand over. “No need to be so courteous with me.” 

 

Xia Lei returned the gesture, holding Officer Zhou’s hand firmly. “Don’t worry, I’m not.” Xia Lei began to sneak glances at the entrance from the corner of his eyes.  

“Comrade Xia, we’re fully aware of your current condition. Your contributions to the country have not gone unnoticed. Your unconditional service and your patriotism is a rare gem among our citizens. You’re young but you’ve already become a role model to many of our comrades.”  

“Oh, Officer Zhou, you mentioned for me to not be so courteous but your words are all the more courteous.” Xia Lei smiled. “There’s no need to praise me. I’m just offering the country what I can do within my power.” 

“Alright, let’s quit being courteous. I’m going to be direct.” 

“Sure, please go ahead.” 

“Uh… Well…” Officer Zhou paused briefly before continuing. “The thing is this, after a background check done by the organization, we’ve found that you were still single and at your prime. You’re an important talent to the country and we understand that you’re always busy with research and managing the Thunder Horse Organization with no time for a relationship...” 

Hearing those words made Zhang Yumei nervous. Failing to hold back, she interrupted Officer Zhou. “Officer Zhou, to be frank, Xia Lei is actually engaged to our Yuyan...” 

Before Zhang Yumei could utter a complete sentence, Officer Zhou interrupted her. “I’m not even done yet, why are you trying to cut me off?”

“I…” Zhang Yumei wanted to go on but was quickly halted by a look from Tang Yunhai.   

Tang Tianlong gazed at Xia Lei nervously and shook his head lightly, hinting for him to not agree to anything. 

Xia Lei pretended to not see it, letting Tang Tianlong panic for all he cared. 

Truthfully, Tang Yuyan was the most nervous and anxious out of everyone present. This Officer Zhou was no stranger to her, his name was Zhou Yunzheng and he was in charge of organizational work. The department he was positioned in was an extremely vital core, therefore his status was extremely high-profiled. Now that Zhou Yunzheng was here to talk about personal matters with Xia Lei, wasn’t this clearly an organizational matchmaking session? 

Organizational matchmaking was an old practice. No one would pull such an act unless special interests were involved with specific people. Obviously, Xia Lei had fulfilled all criteria for that. But here was the question, was Xia Lei the kind of man that was too focused on his work that he hadn’t had the chance to come in contact with women? 

The Tang family was dumbfounded and silent. Zhou Yunzheng continued, “Comrade Xia Lei, we’ve thankful that you’ve sacrificed all your time and effort to the country at the cost of your personal life. We know all about it and we’re anxious about it. That’s why we selected a suitable candidate based on your personality after a round of careful research. I’m here specifically to ask for your opinion on her.” 

“Uh…” Xia Lei looked terribly troubled. 

Almost every member of the Tang family was shaking their heads desperately at him. 

“There’s no need to be so bashful, you’re an adult.” Zhou Yunzheng smiled. “You actually know that female comrade. We’ve talked about this with her and she’s very happy to accept the offer.” 

Xia Lei seemed pressed. “No, it’s just that Tang Yuyan and I have actually…” 

Zhou Yunzheng stopped him. “That female comrade is Fan Fan. The granddaughter of Fan Yiming, the director of the Academy of Sciences.”  

“Huh?!” Xia Lei was shocked.  

“Comrade Fan Fan is an elite talent of our country and her grandfather was a scientist who had contributed a lot to China. Her mental health is perfectly healthy and she’s beautiful and poised. The union between you both is something we’d like to see. It will be beneficial to all of us and even to the interest of the state.” While he was saying that, Zhou Yunzheng’s tone suddenly tensed up. 

The Tang family attempted to say something but Zhou Yunzheng had effectively rendered them speechless. 

They were all smart people. Was Zhou Yunzheng trying to direct that to Xia Lei? No, that wasn’t the case. Those words were meant for the Tang family! 

A union between Xia Lei and Fan Fan would do well to the country? The statement felt like a bomb going off! But if they calmed down and thought this through, that really was the reality! With Fan Fan’s current status, she would be able to keep a close eye on him and subconsciously influence him and even control him if the marriage was a success. With her around, would any other female dare approach him? Surely, Xia Lei wouldn’t be able to make mistakes easily. As Xia Lei’s wife, not only would Fan Fan grasp all information on Xia Lei, but she would also be able to know Thunder Horse’s real-time directions. These were incredibly important to the country now!  

Frankly, instead of saying that they were here to introduce a match to Xia Lei, they were essentially assigning him a seneschal wife!

Soon, Thunder Horse Organization was bound to become a military superpower like Lockheed Martin. It was not difficult to tell that they would be of utmost importance to the country in the near future. If they were going to assign Xia Lei a seneschal wife, it was only natural for them to assign an elite from their core circle.  

Another thing Zhou Yunzheng chose to redact was telling the Tang family to fuck off. 

“Officer Zhou, I… Actually…” Xia Lei continued, “Actually, I’m already engaged to Tang Yuyan. How am I supposed to marry Fan Fan? We’re just friends with no romantic development between us.” 

Xia Lei’s reply allowed the Tang family to exhale in relief. 

A faint smile appeared on the corner of Tang Yuyan’s lips. She knew Xia Lei’s temperament well. There was no point in pushing him to do something he wasn’t willing to do. This was also what took the Tang family so long to ‘melt’ Xia Changhe. If it wasn’t for Xia Changhe’s agreement, would Xia Lei be stuck in his current predicament? Of course not! 

Just as the Tang family was starting to feel comforted, Zhou Yunzheng added on. “If there’s no romance between you two, there’s plenty of time to cultivate one. For Tang Yuyan, we’ll figure out how to compensate her. There’s no need for you to worry about this.”  

Those words struck the Tang family hard like lightning. 

Judging from Zhou Yunzheng’s tone, this wasn’t a matter that permitted a refusal from Xia Lei and it certainly was something the Tang family had to comply with! 

In the face of state interest, forget about one Tang family, even if ten families joined forces, their combined powers wouldn’t even be enough to sustain a single attack! 

Zhang Yumei was positively pressed. “Officer Zhou, our Yuyan, is also capable of handling the assigned tasks required by the organization. Why must it be Fan Fan? Our Yuyan-“

Zhou Yunzheng shot her a look and cut her off once again. “What is with this female comrade? Are my words not clear? Why do you find the need to interrupt me all the time?” 

Tang Tianlong immediately sent Zhang Yumei a look, the man was furious. 

Zhang Yumei quickly took the cue and silenced herself. 

“No! I won’t accept this!” Tang Yuyan’s emotions were out of control. Who the fuck assigned matches like this? Had anyone even considered her feelings before deciding things like this?! 

Zhou Yunzheng frowned at the display. “Comrade Tang Yuyan, why can’t you see this in a bigger picture? It’s about time you execute your job properly!” 

“No! I won’t accept this!” Tang Yuyan was seething with anger. She was close to tears. 

“Yuyan!” Shi Boren reprimanded harshly. “How can you be so unreasonable at a time like this? You must take care of the overall situation!” 

This was Tang Yuyan’s wakeup call. She was about to succeed Shi Boren as the head of Bureau 101. It was an extremely important milestone for her and the Tang family. If she was to defy the orders from the authority now, she might lose the position! This was the best possible outcome.

For the sake of her family, Tang Yuyan silenced herself. She felt terribly wronged and angry. 

“Officer Zhou, about this…” Xia Lei finally spoke, seemingly unwilling. 

Zhou Yunzheng cast his fatherly smile and comforted him. “Just accept it. Come with me, we’ve already arranged an appointment for you to meet comrade Fan Fan. She’s waiting for you.” 

“I…”

  

“Let’s go.” Zhou Yunzheng seized Xia Lei’s arm and pulled him away.   

Xia Lei turned his head around to spare Tang Yuyan a glance. 

Tang Yuyan immediately burst into tears.

Xia Lei sighed internally, but he felt no remorse.  

They said love was the most wonderful emotion in the world, but pure innocent love was close to non-existent. In reality, romance and love were oftentimes associated with lust and desire. The impurities of society tarnished pure love. Sometimes, it was out of helplessness and sometimes it was a compromise. Often, it was also for the sake of survival. 

Xia Lei had solved his own problem with his own terms but he had hurt Tang Yuyan’s heart in the process. 

Sometimes, love was a double-edged sword. It’d hurt the person you love and even yourself. 

Xia Lei was taken away. 

Tang Yunhai looked at Xia Changhe with a dark expression. 

To which Xia Changhe could only sigh softly. Then, he left. 

No one had bothered to ask him to stay. With the current circumstances, who would still have the heart to engage Xia Changhe? 

“I hate this! I won’t accept this!” Tang Yuyan finally unleashed her fury. She kicked over Xia Lei’s seat and threw the cup of tea she made for Zhou Yunzheng to the ground. 

A fragile teacup flew to the ground with a crisp crash, broken into pieces.

The teacup was just like her engagement to Xia Lei, broken. 

Zhang Yumei hurriedly enveloped her daughter in an embrace. She began to comfort her. “Don’t cry. There’s no need to cry. As long as Xia Lei is unwilling to give in, the marriage won’t be a thing. Doing all the mental work for Xia Lei would only upset him.”

Tang Yuyan coiled up pitifully against her mother’s bosom and began to sob. 

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DOGE.