No Money to Divorce
First Published on Chaleuria
Chapter 52: Uninvited Guest
The planet was unexpectedly close to their current position, so Zhong Yan and Intron were able to arrive very quickly.
The address Fayn gave him was that of a small manor located in the green nature of mountains and rivers. It was a commercial resort. Clearly, they were hosting guests today. There were two fully armed security guards posted at the entrance to the manor.
After their car stopped, both Intron and Zhong Yan got off. The security staff yelled to them, “No entry allowed. Leave now!”
Intron was just about to go forward to talk sense to him, but Zhong Yan raised his hand to stop him. He took off his shades and looked coldly at the guards, asking, “Do you know who I am?”
Both the guards were shocked. One of them blurted out, “You’re that Zhong Yan guy!”
“It’s good that you know. Do you know who’s inside, and what they’re talking about?”
While asking, Zhong Yan observed their expressions. The two security guards had faces of pure surprise and confusion, but they were not nervous, so he had a faint idea. These two were merely hired as guards and knew nothing of what was going on inside.
As long as they weren’t people from that side, then things will be easy to deal with.
“You don’t, but I do.” Zhong Yan said, “So move away.”
The two guards quickly stopped him and said, “Sir Zhong, our guests today have given us special instructions not to let anyone in. You…”
Zhong Yan felt anxious inside, but he didn’t show it at all. Arrogantly, he said, “I am kin to one of the guests, and your esteemed guest has asked me to come. Your list of ‘anyone’ does not include me. I was late to begin with, so don’t delay me any longer.”
“Kin?” The two guards looked at each other. Everyone in the Federation knew that the legendary councilor, Zhong Yan, was a parentless child who grew up in an orphanage, so how could he have kin? Unless…
“Are you so dedicated to your work that you did not look at your terminals at all?” Intron asked.
Of course they did. The two quickly responded, “So the person inside is…”
Intron said, “If you understand, then step aside quickly, don’t delay Sir Zhong’s business.”
The two were still a little hesitant. Zhong Yan said with impatience in his tone, “Alright, I’ll go in myself. It shouldn’t be a problem if I don’t bring my assistant, is there?”
One of the security guards began to contact one of his superiors on his terminal. Intron quickly took this opportunity to whisper to Zhong Yan. “Sir Zhong, you’re going in alone? Let me go with you, if things turn for the worst…”
“And what use will you have if you go as well?” Zhong Yan asked him calmly. “If everything goes well, I will be safe on my own. But if something does go wrong…you would have gone in for naught.”
Intron couldn’t refute him. Zhong Yan went on to ask, “Where are Navi’s men currently?”
“They’ll be here soon, about twenty minutes.” Intron nervously confirmed the information on his terminal. “Why don’t we wait for them to arrive before we…”
Zhong Yan refused without even considering it. “No, I will go in first. The longer this goes on, the more dangerous it will be.”
“They seem to have alarmed the media. Several of Navi’s warships have left their borders and broke through the border crossing of Lebor System without declaring their intentions. Many of Lebor’s media outlets are following their movements, won’t this alert them?”
“No matter, outside news can’t enter right now. It won’t do any harm.”
While they were talking, the two guards ended their call and turned to Zhong Yan with complicated expressions. “Sir Zhong, we’re not sure why, but we can’t contact any of the guests inside. Manager’s orders. Why don’t we… let you in just like you suggested, by yourself?”
Zhong Yan eased up a little. This place was most likely chosen by Qu Yongyi. If the manager of the resort couldn’t contact him, that meant he was still inside. If he did not come out, then they must not have succeeded yet.
He stepped into the manor under the worried gaze of Intron.
When he was standing right outside the door, Zhong Yan turned on his terminal deliberately to confirm. The signal was blocked.
He took a deep breath and knocked on the door.
“Is someone knocking on the door?” Adrian suddenly said.
Sitting across from him was an average-looking middle-aged man in his forties. Hearing that, he had a start, and subconsciously said, “How could that be?”
The parlor room was quiet for a few seconds. This time, the muffled sounds of the door reached everyone’s ears.
“How…how could anyone be knocking?” Qu Yongyi looked extremely unsettled, “I told them not to…”
“Don’t be so nervous, Councilor. Perhaps it’s service provided by the manor.” Even though Adrian was getting impatient with how this person kept going back and forth, avoiding the main topic, he vaguely felt that this so-called cooperation could not be achieved. But it will be no good for both sides if word were to get out about him and a member of the Supreme Council having a secret meeting. He told his guard, “Go and see who it is.”
It was impossible for it to be a service staff of the manor, and Qu Yongyi was very clear about this. He had made it very clear when he booked the manor. He was going to talk about confidential things with some bigshots, so nobody was allowed to come anywhere close to that building.
The guard accepted the order and left. Only Qu Yongyi, his assistant, and Adrian were left in the parlor room now.
Qu Yongyi couldn’t be bothered to think about anything else now—the guard finally left, and Adrian was alone. Was this a good chance right now? Maybe they can…
He was still hesitant and wanted to turn to his assistant and look at what he thought. But this opportunity was fleeting. The manor was not big to begin with, so the guard returned not long after leaving—And, they brought an uninvited guest.
It’s hard to say whether Adrian or Qu Yongyi was more shocked to see Zhong Yan under these circumstances. Both of them stood up and was just about to speak, but nobody was as quick as Zhong Yan. As soon as he stepped into the room, he started complaining before anyone could even say anything. “What is wrong with this manor? The guards at the door actually tried to keep me out—what a joke, don’t they know who I am? Say, and what’s wrong with you? Didn’t we agree you’d come pick me up in a bit? What took you so long? Now I had to come here by myself.”
As he said that, he walked very naturally to Adrian’s side, and helped him dust away the nonexistent dust on his collar. Adrian did not evade him. Zhong Yan who should’ve been on a ship right now suddenly appeared here, and his behavior was abnormal. He suppressed his confusion and quietly waited to see.
Hearing this, Qu Yongyi was dumbfounded and looked dazedly at Zhong Yan. He asked, “Councilor Zhong Yan…Were you not returning to the Capital?”
“I was,” Zhong Yan responded. Affectionately, he patted Adrian’s arm and said, “This guy promised he’d come see me off. But he never showed up, so I could only come myself.”
“How did you know I was here?” asked Adrian, expression unperturbed. He was trying to figure out what was going on.
“Don’t you have a tracker installed on your terminal?” Zhong Yan said, “Your adjutant helped me check where you were. Don’t blame him for this, he really can’t help it. I’m not delaying your business, am I?”
Adrian was very clear that no such thing was installed on his terminal. So…Fayn told him where he was. Why?
“Oh, oh no, nothing of the sort.” Cold sweat was starting to ooze from Qu Yongyi’s forehead. A tracker? But all signals were clearly shielded in this building, so how could the tracker find them? Could there be a problem with the shielding device? He couldn’t help himself from being a little flustered, but he tried his best to smile. “Councilor Zhong, you… I thought your relationship was not good? It seems like the rumors can’t be trusted.”
Zhong Yan sighed. “Well, we’re already married, what can we do? The fines were really too high. We discussed it, but we could really only give in.”
He saw both Adrian and Qu Yongyi looking at him with horror and pretended to be surprised. “Oh, didn’t you receive the news?” He turned to Adrian. “Didn’t ‘Butterfly’ send you the notification? I received our official marriage notification earlier. You…did delay it, right?”
“We have a one-way shielding device in use here,” Qu Yongyi quickly explained, “Sir Yate knows.”
The so-called one-way shielding meant that outside signals could not enter, nor detect any of the activities inside, so automatic transfers of this sort would not be affected. Adrian’s heart jumped—The automatic transfer failed? This building…is not under one-way shielding?
“Oh, then I’ll show you mine. Look, those are the two notifications. One says our fines are overdue, and the other is the notice of our marriage.” While saying that, Zhong Yan turned on his terminal and showed it to Adrian, but the screen wasn’t showing the notice from “Butterfly” as he described, and was instead showing the text communication interface with Adrian. The input field says: Danger. There are assassins in the house, lots of them. Do not fall out with him here. Leave.
“It’s just a marriage notification, what’s there to look at? It was set to happen a long time ago,” said Adrian, unperturbed. He raised his hand to shut off Zhong Yan’s terminal screen, and following that, held his hand in a very natural manner.
Though his appearance was calm and steady, Zhong Yan’s palms were covered in sweat.
Adrian had a basic understanding of the situation now. He was only told when he came in that this building was protected by a one-way shield, but it was actually an in-depth two-way shield. Even if he realized that something was wrong, nobody inside could seek help from the outside.
“How long have you been talking here? Are you done yet?” Zhong Yan looked at Adrian. “Why don’t you continue your talk after you send me off?”
“Well, we’re not done here yet—” Qu Yongyi subconsciously tried to stop him, but then he couldn’t be too sure about that decision. It did not seem like Adrian noticed anything off, and Zhong Yan had also crashed in by coincidence. Adrian’s guard did not leave that whole time, so for the sake of security, he never made his move, and waited patiently for Adrian to be left alone. Word is that Adrian was the strongest soldier in the world. With 1 vs 10 being a piece of cake for him, anyone who could become Adrian’s guard was likely no pushover either. And now that Zhong Yan was suddenly mixed into the pile, the instability factor has greatly increased. Things like this only allowed for success. Failure was no option. If Adrian lives through this, then he would be the one dead. He might be better off…letting him go first, and arranging for another opportunity. If he forcefully stopped him, they might end up finding something fishy about him instead.
But this didn’t seem right, how could Zhong Yan be in such a relationship with Adrian? This wasn’t how it was written in the information he heard prior to this at all! How did they get married? Could they really not afford the fines? And why doesn’t Zhong Yan look surprised to see him at all? And how could Adrian’s adjutant tell him such a confidential thing?
“It’s more important for you to be with Councilor Zhong. I mean, you’re newly married…” Qu Yongyi’s mind was in a mess, and his words were already getting incoherent. “It’s only proper. That’s right, I still haven’t congratulated Councilor Zhong…”
Zhong Yan gave him a reserved nod. He was a representative council member, so was not very respectful towards Qu Yongyi, and only responded plainly, “Thank you.”
Adrian was pulling a long face. From the looks of it, he looked rather unhappy to have his conversation interrupted, but it would not be good for him to get into a fit in front of an outsider. He said to Qu Yongyi, “I’ll be back in a moment. I’m sorry, he’s quite the troublemaker. He’s been this way since we were still in school. He’s gotten too used to using his privilege.”
Qu Yongyi told them not to worry about it, and sent the three of them to the door, only to hear a voice ring out from the parlor room just before they left. “Do you think he’ll return after leaving?”
It was Qu Yongyi’s assistant, who had been silently standing at the side without any sense of presence. They turned their heads to look at him and saw the unattractive man raise his head, looking at him with a pair of cold eyes that glimmered with frost. He shouted, “Get them! This is our only chance!”