Epoch of Twilight – Chapter 41

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The policemen were surrounded by a big crowd of refugees from Donghu City. Fang Xiao felt anxious. He knew the first group of people would be tough to handle, and he did not dare make a rush decision. He called to ask his superior for advice, however, the instructions he received were not what he had expected. He cursed silently. He could not change a thing.

 

He took the loudspeaker and shouted as loud as he could, “My dearest friends, please do not act on your impulses. Regardless of the rules and regulations you used to follow in Donghu City, it’s illegal to own a gun here. All guns must be surrendered when you enter Hedong City. However, you can still keep your knives and other weapons respectively.”

He suddenly stopped shouting for a few seconds and glanced across the crowd before concluding, “If you can’t accept these conditions, we will not allow you to enter Hedong City!”

 

The crowd stopped and gradually calmed down. As history had proved, citizens would never oppose government officials if they could avoid any unnecessary punishment. Since the police were willing to compromise, the foreigners were willing to tolerate their culture and rules as well.

 

“All those weapons came from the police! It’s difficult for me to believe every citizen in Hedong City follows the rules,” a guy beside Luo Yuan said sarcastically while he crossed his arms in front of his chest.

“Can’t you see? If we don’t surrender our weapons, how will they be able to sell them again? Forget it, I’ll just see it as paying tax,” another guy commented, joining the conversation for fun.

 

Huang Jiahui was getting more and more upset as she continued to listen. She had not confirmed whether this was the truth, but she did believe that it was.

 

“Inspection is starting! Please return to your cars, remain calm and do not act on your impulses. I repeat, please remain calm…,” Fang Xiao kept shouting. On his signal, a group of policemen started going around with a small X-ray machine.

“Go back to your seat and give me the rifle and the gun,” Luo Yuan told Huang Jiahui, pulling her arm.

 

She shook his hand off and said, “No way! Why do we need to surrender?”

 

Luo Yuan sounded annoyed as he said, “Why? Why won’t you just surrender the weapons? I’m not going to risk my life for you.”

 

Huang Jiahui knew she had pissed him off and she reluctantly walked back to the car. She handed him the rifle and the gun, and then returned to the passenger seat that she shared with Wang Shi Shi.

Wang Shi Shi felt anxious as she saw both of them remain silent. She then asked carefully, “Sister Huang, I remember you telling me that you were a cop. Every policeman has a gun, so it should be fine for us to keep one, right?”

 

Huang Jiahui still looked upset. “I’m no longer a cop,” she said. Suddenly, she recalled something and added, “Oh yeah! My file is still in the Public Security Bureau. It hasn’t been removed, so that means I’m still a cop!”

 

Luo Yuan asked, “So? That would only be useful if you still wanted to be a cop.”

 

Huang Jiahui felt slightly relieved that Luo Yuan was willing to talk to her again, but she was still upset. “Why not?” she said. “There are whole armies guarding Hedong City. I think it’s safer here. Besides, being a cop is better than working anywhere else. The benefits are good!”

 

“Alright, it’s up to you.” Luo Yuan did not want to continue that conversation. Everyone had their own path to follow and they needed to take full responsibility for it.

Huang Jiahui was upset and intentionally said, “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of you when I go back to working for the police.” She thought Luo Yuan would say something sarcastic again. Surprisingly, he did not.

 

“Just take good care of yourself,” he said. “Hedong City is not as safe as it used to be. Oh right! Would you like to contact your husband and daughter? They are both here, right?” Luo Yuan asked considerately.

 

Huang Jiahui hesitated. She did not want to talk to her husband because they did not love each other anymore. However, she decided to call when she thought of her daughter, who was still staying with him.

 

“Hi, who is this?” A low pitch voice came from the other end.

 

Huang Jiahui took a deep breath and answered, “It’s me, Huang Jiahui. I’m calling from a friend’s phone. Where are you? I’m in Hedong City. I called you earlier but it didn’t go through. There are still a few colleagues of mine in Donghu City. I’ll check with them and arrange for you to come over with the second group of citizens.”

 

Her husband said, “It’s okay, I’m in Hedong City now.”

 

“Is our daughter with you?” Huang Jiahui asked coldly.

 

“Does that mean you’re at the highway junction? Where are you now? I’m coming over,” his voice became slightly agitated.

Huang Jiahui looked at Luo Yuan for a while, but he was not paying attention to the conversation. She hesitated before she said, “Alright. Please bring our daughter along. I’m inside a Santana 2000 next to a silver Benz.”

 

About 10 minutes later, they saw a man in a uniform walk towards them holding a little girl in his arms. The girl looked about five or six years old. Judging by his uniform and the badges on his collar, the man had to be a Squadron Leader. He was also the person who had been on the phone just now. He looked smart and virtuous, but his eyes were very fierce and that made him look violent.  

“Mommy! Mommy!” Once the little girl saw Huang Jiahui, she began to wave.

 

Huang Jiahui teared up from the excitement. She quickly put down Wang Shi Shi and got out of the car. She took the little girl in her arms and said, “Ning Ning! Mommy is here! I missed you so much! How are you? How has your stay with daddy been?” Huang Jiahui asked.

 

The little girl peeped at her father and replied, “It was great!”

 

Yu Gaohui noticed Luo Yuan sitting in the driver’s seat. He frowned and said, “Jiahui, who is this? Care to introduce us?”

 

“This is Luo Yuan. He is my friend,” Huang Jiahui replied calmly.

 

Luo Yuan got out of the car, extended his hand with a smile and said, “Hi. We’re just friends, nothing else.” Luo Yuan knew that these types of men were dangerous, especially when they were given authority and power. He didn’t have to offend her husband by giving him the wrong impression.   

Huang Jiahui was stunned and anxious. The two men stared at each other for a moment. Yu Gaohui suddenly smiled and said, “I want to thank you on behalf of Jiahui. Our family will always remember your help.”

 

Luo Yuan smiled. He was amazed by the man’s courtesy and good manners.

 

Yu Gaohui looked at Huang Jiahui as he said, “Jiahui, mom and dad are both in the car. They were so happy to hear from you. Could you please come and see them?” Both of his parents had always been very kind to Huang Jiahui, They treated her as their own daughter. If it were not for them, Huang Jiahui and Yu Gaohui would have gotten divorced way earlier. She hesitated before finally agreeing. She turned around and looked at Luo Yuan while she walked away. As he watched her, Luo Yuan suddenly felt as though he was going to lose her.

Finally, the inspectors reached their car. They confiscated his gun and rifle, and then proceeded to the next car. They did not bother asking where he had gotten them from. Shortly thereafter, everyone was asked to register themselves in a temporarily built iron room.

 

“Chen Guohua, did you use to own a trading company?” an officer asked while looking at a notebook.

 

“Yes, sir,” a middle-aged man answered.

 

“You have accounts at Commercial Bank, Agricultural Bank, and Donghu City Bank. Your total savings amount to thirty three million, is that right?” the officer asked again.

 

The middle-aged man blinked before he answered carefully, “Yes, sir.”

 

“How many employees you did you have during your peak time?”

 

The man began to sweat but he answered honestly, “Two hundred!”

 

“Great! I hope you can build a factory again as soon as possible!” the officer said.

 

“Build a factory?” The man looked confused.

 

“A military factory. We will start a bullet manufacturing business tomorrow. I hope you can get everything ready for it,” the officer explained.

 

“But.. but…” the man seemed to want to say something, but he was not given a chance to.

 

“Next!” the officer shouted without looking at him. The man stood up and left with a miserable expression.

“Don’t worry, we will provide all the equipment and send a few experienced technicians to your factory. I hope your company can produce certified barrel bombs,” the officer told him.

 

“But I was in the real estate industry. I have zero experience in the metal manufacturing industry,” the man tried to explain.

 

“This is not a big issue. Don’t worry about it… Next!” the officer said. “What’s your name?”

 

“Luo Yuan,” Luo Yuan answered calmly.

 

The officer checked his notebook and realized his name was not on the list. He frowned and asked Luo Yuan, “Did someone bring you here?”

 

“Yes,” Luo Yuan answered.

 

“What’s your educational background, occupation and working experience?” the officer asked him in one breath.

 

“I have a single license in International Trade and one year of working experience,” Luo Yuan replied.

 

“Next!”

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