Wasn’t this little demon dumb?!
The middle-aged fat man was hit by the fist and flew upside down. After a scream, he laid on the ground and groaned. His face was pale and his forehead was sweating.
The expressions of several soldiers in white uniforms changed and they reached out to catch Qiao Zhiya, but were stopped by the soldiers in black uniforms and prevented them from getting closer to him.
“This is a contradiction between the rescued slaves. We have no right to use violence against any of them until we know which they belong to.” The soldier in black uniform, who was stopped once, said with a serious face, obviously protecting Qiao Zhiya behind him. His attitude of being ready to confront them was clearly laid out.
The soldier in white uniform’s expression sank, wanting to get angry but afraid of the consequences. This was the other person’s territory, so he could only sigh in distress. He helped the middle-aged fat man stand up and took a look at the protected Qiao Zhiya, not reconciled. He said, “He must go with us to see the colonel and Marshal Chu. If he is determined to be a member of the Empire, he must be sent back and cannot remain in the Federation!”
Qiao Zhiya’s expression tightened and he glanced at the middle-aged man whose groans and moans weakened. He was resenting the middle-aged fat man who was also looking at him. Suddenly, he somewhat regretted having apprehensions here at White-Haired Monster’s territory just a moment ago. When he wielded his fist, he restrained himself and only took a little bit of strength. He then simply moved away from their eyes and stood behind a black military soldier who was familiar with him.
The soldier looked down at him, gave him a reassuring look in a vague manner, motioned him not to move, and then secretly sent a message to his chief.
Fan Xiangnan, who was sitting beside Chu Rong, noticed the vibration of his communicator. He glanced at Xiang Hui and the officials from the Federation who were talking cheerfully and warmly on the opposite side. He cast a look at Chu Rong, got up, and walked out of the meeting room.
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Combined with Xiang Hui’s urgent attitude of putting the pirates over to the “corresponding functional department” when he came yesterday… It seemed that Xiang’s visit to “help” patrol the border this time was fake and it was instead to conceal the mine thieves. If these mine thieves were really from the Xiang family, then the imperial background that the thieves had previously explained was probably just a cover to hide their true identity.
At the thought of this brainless action, he glanced at Xiang Hui’s polite and gentle appearance, and showed mockery— Xiang Hui’s family, who always boasted of elegance and benevolence. Behind his back, Xiang Hui actually colluded with swindlers and thieves, which was extremely uninteresting.
The atmosphere in the meeting room was strange. Fan Xiangnan, who went out before, suddenly pushed the door in, his voice was slightly louder as he said, “The slave who claimed to be a resident of the Empire has been brought together with a minor.” He then took a look at his own chief officer.
When Chu Rong heard this, he frowned and looked at the door— there was only one minor among the rescued slaves.
“There’s also a minor?” Xiang Hui frowned and scolded bitterly, “The red tin mine is so special, it’s heartless of them to catch a minor for mining!”
The other officials echoed, like lackeys against the same enemy.
Chu Rong couldn’t withstand knocking on the table. Lin Zhen, who had been sitting like a background drop, received the signal. He raised his head and said with no expression, “Those who illegally detain minors to engage in work harmful to their spiritual power and cause irreversible disability shall be sentenced to imprisonment according to federal law. Those who illegally excavate and steal minerals from others shall be sentenced to death according to the value of the stolen minerals. Those who illegally imprison and cause the death of slaves shall be sentenced to death. For multiple crimes, they should be executed immediately.”
Xiang Hui stopped condemning as if someone had caught his neck, paused, and said, “These mine thieves are from the Empire and cannot be directly sentenced in accordance with federal laws. This will cause diplomatic friction.”
“Then this matter should be investigated to the end.” Lin Zhen flipped through the information in his hand and said in a calm tone, “The Empire allowed the miners to cross the border asteroid belt and stole minerals from the private mining stars of the Chu Family. If the Empire did not give a reasonable explanation to the Chu Family and the Federation, the friction might not be easy to settle.”
Was this trying to make a big deal out of the small matter regarding mine thieves between the Federation and the empire?
The federal officials were silent and began to regret that they had just isolated Chu Rong for Xiang Hui. This young marshal was feared by the President; he had a solid background, huge support from the public, powerful hands, and an older brother who protected him. If they stood on the opposite side, they would have to step on a big pit if they were not careful.
Xiang Hui’s heart jumped. What did Chu Rong’s subordinates mean? They wanted to delve into the bottom of the mine thieves?
While they were talking, Qiao Zhiya and his group had already entered the room. The middle-aged fat man had been looking at Qiao Zhiya resentfully. At this time, he looked like he couldn’t be counselled. His eyes turned around on several high-ranking federal officials and finally fell on Chu Rong, who was in the head seat, guessing his identity in his heart.
In the Federation, only the Chu Family could wear black military uniform out of the four influential families. He just didn’t know which position in the Chu family this person had. Anyway, it’s better to fool him.
“What’s the matter?”
Chu Rong’s gaze glided slightly across Qiao Zhiya and finally fell on the officer in black uniform.
“Sir, sir, it’s like this: This person is my child. He was accidentally separated from me in the explosion. He is also from the Empire. I want to take him home. Thank you 2[Courteous or formal you (您). Chu Rong’s subordinates usually also use this.] for saving him. Thank you3[Courteous or formal you (您)]. Thank you.” Without waiting for the officer to reply, the middle-aged fat man jumped out and reached out to pull Qiao Zhiya’s arm.
Qiao Zhiya sullenly glanced at the White-Haired Monster who seemed to claim not to recognize him. His heart was stuffy. With a move of his arm, he turned and punched the middle-aged fat man in the face again— disgusting guy! I would beat you!
Fan Xiangnan’s eyebrows twitched when he saw this.
Seated on the upper seat, the corners of Chu Rong’s mouth curled up but he immediately pressed them down, showing coldness and impatience. He motioned his subordinates to pull Qiao Zhiya away and then looked at the middle-aged fat man who was lying on the ground holding his face and shouting in pain. He said, “Your child? It doesn’t seem like it.”
In fact, not only him, but everyone in the conference room felt it was really not like that. Qiao Zhiya looked exquisite and pure while the middle-aged fat man had fat, big ears and greasy features. Standing together, people with normal IQ would not think that they were one family.
“That kid looks like his mother, not like me, but he is really my kid! If you don’t believe me, look at his back, there is a leaf-shaped birthmark on his butterfly bone! He was born dumb! He beats me because I didn’t protect him and blames me. Rebellious children are like this.” The middle-aged fat man stood up firmly and no longer tried to get close to Qiao Zhiya, but began to sell miserably in a bitter and regretful manner, and said, “Yes. I’m wrong, I can’t give him what he wants. I’m not a qualified father, I’m sorry for his mother…”
Xiang Hui received the gaze from his family, his thoughts turned, and he began to show his generosity and kindness. He said, “So, this father, you don’t have to blame yourself. The child betrayed—”
“You are a dumb, disgusting molester!”
The elf blessing mark on his body was said to be a birthmark. Qiao Zhiya was so angry that he finally found a suitable vocabulary to explain the behavior of the middle-aged fat man. He broke away from the officer’s hand, rushed to the middle-aged fat man, and hit him again and again.
These punches used half of his strength and the middle-aged fat man was in so much pain. He was shocked by the punches that he couldn’t believe it— what’s going on? Wasn’t this little demon dumb?!
Birthmark, dumb, molester— these words made Chu Rong’s breath sink. He thought of the illustrations Qiao Zhiya had drawn at the beginning. He deliberately didn’t open his mouth. When Qiao Zhiya seemed to finally vented enough, he waved his hand and made his subordinate drag him again. He looked at Lin Zhen and said, “Check their identities.”
Lin Zhen opened and quickly the file containing the information of the middle-aged fat man. He reported, “Bart, a member of the Chamian Family of the Empire’s B-class planet, was removed from his family for illegal detention of a molested minor. He escaped during his arrest. The mine thieves deceived him on the grounds of smuggling. He is unmarried and childless. He is now wanted by the Empire. Qiao Zhiya, Federal F-class planet resident, orphan, and had never left his hometown before he was caught.”
The middle-aged fat man was shocked when he heard the information. He didn’t expect his background to be checked so quickly. He was immediately confused but could only scream because of the pain on his body.
“A rapist of the Empire actually wanted to take away a resident of my Federation.” Chu Rong frowned in disgust and ordered, “Drag him out, contact the Empire and ask them to extradite 4[Extradite refers to handing over (a person accused or convicted of a crime) to the jurisdiction of the foreign state —in this case, the Empire— in which the crime was committed (Oxford Languages, n. d.).] the prisoners back. Don’t let them dirty the federal land.”
Chu Rong frowned. The soldiers stepped forward and dragged others without saying a word. They were not polite at all.
The federal officials sat quietly aside and didn’t dare to indiscriminately intervene. With such a powerful investigation ability, it would be better for them to be honest when they were on someone else’s territory.
Upon seeing this, Xiang Hui’s thoughts flashed. Before the middle-aged fat man was completely dragged out, he said, “Since you want to contact the Empire to extradite the prisoners, it is better to send the thieves and other Empire slaves back together. Marshal Chu, you still have to preside over the land remedial task. I will take care of the handover with the Empire.”
Chu Rong looked at him, his eyes unreadable.
Qiao Zhiya at the side secretly stepped on the hands and feet of the middle-aged fat man while everyone was not paying attention. The black-clothed officer glanced at him and turned to pretend not to see it.
The middle-aged fat man was stepped on and yelled out with an “ow.” As he woke up from his dream, he hurriedly grabbed the door and shouted, “I, I know the background of these thieves! They are not from the Empire at all! They are from the Federation. Please don’t send me back, I can atone for my crimes! Don’t send me back!”
Xiang Hui’s expression changed when he heard the words. He sharply looked at the middle-aged fat man and stealthily gave a meaningful glance at his subordinates.
The soldier in white uniform quickly stepped forward to help drag the person out and wanted to cover the middle-aged fat man’s mouth.
Chu Rong coldly curled his lips and ordered, “Drag him back.”
Qiao Zhiya, who was standing on the side, heard the order, stepped forward without a word, grabbed the middle-aged fat man’s feet, easily pulling him back, and threw him directly at Chu Rong’s feet. He then glanced at him with a sullen face upon turning his head, and brushed against Fan Xiangnan’s back.
Fan Xiangnan coughed and suppressed his smile. He thoughtfully closed the door of the meeting room “just in time” to shut Xiang Family’s military subordinate, who was too late to react, outside the meeting room.
Xiang Hui was choked by their behavior, turned his head to look at Qiao Zhiya, and groaned in his heart— was this kid a monster? Such a big and fat man, he actually pulled him back with the strength of several adult men! Dȃmn it!
Chu Rong looked at the fat man on the ground and gave another glance at Qiao Zhiya, who was peeking from behind Fan Xiangnan. He raised his eyebrows without a trace and his mood fluttered— was the Bald Chicken upset?5[Yes, Ancestor Chu. Our Xiao Zhiya is upset.]
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PS: ︿(⊙v⊙)︿6[To be honest, the author says something more than this, but they are not relevant to the story and only contains thanks to those, uhm, who gave donations.]