Chapter 111: Ambition
Nyoi-Bo Studio Nyoi-Bo Studio
“President Xiao, please get security to save him at once. We don’t want anyone dying at our company’s front door,” Li Zimeng advised, her delicate features clouded with worry.
Xu Guansong, Luo Qi, and Zhang Donghai also came forward to side with her. After all, this was happening in their company’s compound. If someone died, it would be a devastating blow to their reputation. More importantly, the people involved were former employees who had been fired from Luo’s Workshop. If the media caught wind of this, the news reports would not be pretty.
Even though Xiao Luo had half a mind to stamp out Wang Tiechui’s life, he could see the logic behind their arguments.
Waving them in, he allowed the head of security to rush into the fray with his men.
They managed to rescue Wang Tiechui, but he had taken a severe beating. His face was bruised, swollen, and drenched in blood. He was on the verge of death as an ambulance came to take him away. The mob of more than five hundred workers calmed down and gradually regained their composure. When they saw blood splattered on the ground, they quickly dispersed, afraid of getting into more trouble if they lingered.
Just like that, the workers’ strike was settled!
The various department heads and managers of various outlets had come to understand Xiao Luo better through this event. While Xiao Luo looked mild-mannered and peaceable, he was ruthlessly decisive, and this left a powerful impression in their hearts. Some of the store managers with lazy attitudes now had to clean up their act. They did not dare show any signs of disrespect in front of Xiao Luo.
Before leaving, Chu Yunxiong reminded Xiao Luo in front of everyone, “Luo, my offer still stands. If you need anything, come look for me!”
This statement helped reassure everyone that the legendary entrepreneur Chu Yunxiong still vouched for Xiao Luo. At the same time, they also began to wonder who this Xiao Luo was to have gained his trust.
“In addition to the one million that President Xiao has invested, the company account has five million in liquid assets.” Guo Fu, head of Luo’s Workshop’s finance department, was sharing the company’s financial report with Xiao Luo in his office.
Xiao Luo’s brow furrowed as he listened. Five million may be a large sum to an individual, but to a company, it was a paltry amount. To put things into context, Luo’s Workshop paid out nearly three million dollars each month to their employees. Now they were in the red every day. If they did not quickly turn the situation around, Luo’s Workshop would be finished by the end of next month.
“I get the picture. Please return to your work. Oh yes, and ask store manager Sun Jian’nan to come to see me.”
“Yes, President Xiao!”
Guo Fu bowed slightly and left the room.
Zhang Dashan got up from the sofa, walked over to Xiao Luo, and said, “This workers’ strike came at a perfect time, huh? It’s allowed you to flex your authority as the boss in front of the whole company.”
“It’s all thanks to you,” Xiao Luo replied with a slight smile.
“You can save your breath when it comes to words of gratitude. I want something tangible.”
“What are we talking about here?” Xiao Luo asked, puzzled, raising his eyebrows.
Zhang Dashan brought his teacup down onto the desk, hard, and scolded, “B*stard, stop acting stupid in front of me. I want the position of vice-president, old pal.” He made his way to the balcony in the office, looked down at the view below, and stretched his arms out wide. He took a deep breath and said, “I never dreamed that one day I would be a big boss, gazing down on all my employees from my ivory tower.”
He had obviously already embraced his self-ordained role as vice-president.
“Okay, quit your daydreaming. You can be my assistant for now, and when Luo’s Workshop is back on its feet, I’ll let you have my position,” Xiao Luo said in annoyance.
“What the f*ck? Bro, are you for real? You’re not messing with me?” Zhang Dashan exclaimed excitedly.
Xiao Luo rolled his eyes at him. “When have I ever messed with you?”
“Hahaha. My good brother, Lao Xiao, you really are my good brother.”
1An elated Zhang Dashan was cracking up, but he quickly realized that something was amiss. Frowning, he said, “No, something’s not right.”
“What’s not right?”
“If you give me your position as president, then what are you going to do?” Zhang Dashan asked.
Xiao Luo brushed him off, saying, “I’ll move on and develop some other business. It’s not a problem.”
Zhang Dashan was taken aback. If he could successfully helm Luo’s Workshop, he would be satisfied. He’d never thought beyond that, yet his brother fully intended to move on to other businesses. While Xiao Luo spoke flippantly about it, Zhang Dashan knew that he was not kidding.
“I feel like you’re going to become the next Chu Yunxiong.”
“Well, I hope to surpass him.”
As he said this, Xiao Luo stood up and patted Zhang Dashan on the shoulder. His body was integrated with a high-tech system. If he only managed to match the standards which Chu Yunxiong had set, he would never be satisfied.
Zhang Dashan swallowed down a mouthful of saliva. This was the first time he discovered that lofty goals and ambition had been lurking in the depths of his brother’s heart all this while.
“Dong, dong, dong!”
At that moment, someone knocked lightly on the door to the office.
Xiao Luo sat back in his seat.
The door was pushed open. Sun Jian’nan shuffled in obediently, looking presentable in a suit. He was walking rather stiffly, on account of his nerves, as he made his way in front of Xiao Luo’s desk. Raising his head to look at Xiao Luo, he inquired, “Pre-President Xiao, you asked for me?”
From the ‘young man’ he’d first encountered a few days ago to the ‘President Xiao’ of today, Xiao Luo’s identity was changing too rapidly for him to keep up. He was feeling a bit dazed, as though caught in a dream.
“Take a seat,” Xiao Luo said, gesturing politely for him to sit down.
Sun Jian’nan nodded, taking a deep breath to stabilize his emotions before sitting upright opposite Xiao Luo.
“Store Manager Sun, I have been told that the Luo’s Workshop food safety violation transpired inside your store?”
“Mm, yes, that’s correct.”
“Do you believe that there is an issue with the products we are selling?”
“No, there is definitely nothing wrong with our pastries,” Sun Jian’nan replied, adamantly shaking his head. “I had my eye on that old man the instant he stepped into our store.”
“Why is that?” Xiao Luo asked.
Sun Jian’nan began to recount from memory, “It was because his face looked abnormally discolored. It was pale like he was suffering from an illness. His breathing was also labored, as though his windpipe was clogged. I even remember specially pouring him a cup of hot tea.”
Xiao Luo nodded, urging him, “Tell me your theory.”
“I believe the old man did not die from eating our bread, but suddenly passed away from a pre-existing condition.” Sun Jian’nan laid bare his innermost thoughts as he continued, “However, the medical professionals and the old man’s relatives all insist that he suffocated when our bread got stuck in his windpipe.”
“If that is true, then doesn’t it mean that Luo’s Workshop has been unjustly framed?” Zhang Dashan could not hold back his objections.
“I can’t be completely certain, but my gut tells me that Luo’s Workshop is not responsible for the old man’s death,” Sun Jian’nan conjectured.
Xiao Luo waved him out, saying, “I understand. Go back to what you were doing.”
Sun Jian’nan got up and bowed, turning to leave.
“What else do you need, President Xiao?”
“Don’t tell Sun Yu about me,” Xiao Luo ordered.
Sun Jian’nan was slightly surprised by this request, but he nodded in acknowledgment. “Mm, yes.”
Then, he pushed open the door and exited the office.
“Lao Xiao, it seems like you have a thing for the Beauty Sun,” Zhang Dashan teased.
He knew perfectly well why Xiao Luo wanted to hide his identity. It was not because he wanted Sun Yu to let down her guard so that he could take advantage of her. Rather, Xiao Luo wished to meet and understand her on equal footing as ordinary guy and girl. There were too many examples of rich men courting great beauties these days. A simple, pure romance untainted by the stench of money was a rare occurrence.