Chapter 319: Face-Slapping – 3
Mia’s expression mellowed after she took the phone. She turned her body sideways and began to talk. “I thought we had a deal? You would bring your team over and we would share the information we have? Do you know how important this meeting is? You are the one who begged us to share information with you, so why did you send this girl to communicate with us? Are you humiliating me?”
All her feelings of resentment came pouring out. However, after Gu Yan said something to her, her attitude changed. “Don’t get me wrong. I value our friendship and I’m not angry with you. I just feel that the Physics Association is not taking me seriously... If you say so, I will continue the exchange meeting,” Mia said reluctantly.
After she hung up the call, she rolled her eyes at Fu Zhi and returned the phone to Yuan He.
“Ms. Mia, it’s pretty late now, so why don’t we go inside first?” Yuan He asked.
Lifting her chin, Mia let out a scoff. “You have to understand that it’s only because of Gu Yan that I’m agreeing to continue the meeting. However, your candidates are rude, so don’t you think you owe us an apology?”
“You’re a guest invited by the Physics Association, and it’s indeed our fault for talking back at you. How about this? I will have Fu Zhi apologize to you.”
By right, Yuan He shouldn’t let the contestants apologize no matter the level of the country or the contestants. However, Fu Zhi and Gu Yan were having a conflict, and she wanted to do something for Gu Yan.
Mia nodded, and her face lit up.
The secretary on the side saw this and lamented. “Gu Yan really has a large circle of acquaintances. Not only did she set up an exchange meeting with Ms. Mia, but she also easily soothed her with a few words.”
“You don’t say! The Ford Family is one of the most elite families in Country M, and without some real skills or background, it’s practically impossible to get to know them. Fu Zhi has made the wrong call this time. She thought she could replace Gu Yan, but reality just gave her a huge slap on the face. Not only has she made herself look like a laughing stock, but she has also disgraced our country!”
The two secretaries mumbled to each other. After Yuan He finished talking to Mia, she walked up to Fu Zhi and said, “You go apologize to Ms. Mia now, and we will let the matter slide. Then, we can proceed with the exchange meeting.”
Mia, who was standing aside, harrumphed coldly and said, “Our country has been the champion for ten years, and nobody has doubted us before. If it were not for Gu Yan, I would never have wasted my precious time on people like you guys.”
Yuan He nodded. Then, she turned to Fu Zhi and said, “What are you still waiting for? Go now. Don’t you want to show your face in the exchange meeting? Well, now is your chance, so you’d better make the most of it.”
The corner of Fu Zhi’s lips curled upward. She glanced at Yuan He and then Mia before she said apathetically, “What chance? The chance to apologize? Do you think she deserves it?”
“Fu Zhi!” Yuan He’s expression changed. “Do you have any idea what you are saying?!”
“You don’t get it? Then let me make it simple for you. The Physics Association has given you guys so much freedom that you have forgotten who you truly are.”
Fu Zhi raised her head, and her gaze was sharp. “Nothing about my education has taught me to apologize to people who insult my country!”
Anyone who was not their kin would certainly have a different mind. This was what Fu Zhao thought of her. Even though Fu Zhi was not a racist, she knew that she could not back off when the interests of her own country were in jeopardy.
Yuan He froze.
Fu Zhi added, “Besides, I’m not here to participate in the exchange meeting at all. To be honest, a country that relies on cheating and shady practices to suppress other countries’ participants in order to remain glorious for a decade is only worthy of wallowing in a chrysalis of self-deception and gloating. As for lecturing other people, I suggest you drop the thought. You would only lead people astray.”
Some of the people on the scene were surprised when they heard what Fu Zhi had said, especially Yuan He. She said, “You’re already here, and now you’re telling me that you don’t want to participate in the exchange meeting? Then why are you still here?”
“For the meal, of course. Oh yeah, before I forget, we’re not staying in the Physics Association’s accommodation either.”
Gritting her teeth, Yuan He hissed, “Fu Zhi, do you think this is a place you can leave whenever you want? You are really...”
Mia, who was standing not far away, felt as if her ears were failing her when she heard what Fu Zhi had said. “President Yuan, what is she talking about? Are they looking down on us and our country?”
“No, Ms. Mia. You’ve misunderstood. That’s not what she means. Let me talk to her.” Yuan He comforted Mia as she walked up to Fu Zhi. “I know you don’t like Gu Yan and you don’t want her to outshine you in the Physics Association, but as a team leader, you’ve got to have keen judgment. The Physics Association naturally has its own reason for making so much effort and spending so much time to hold this exchange meeting. If you offend Mia and she doesn’t want to continue the meeting, all our effort and money will be totally wasted. Then, how are we going to explain this to the higher-ups?”
Frowning, Lu Yubai chimed in, “So, you’re saying that they can insult our country, and we’re not supposed to fight back?”
“That’s childish behavior!” Yuan He felt like she was going to explode sooner or later. “If you really have a backbone, you should learn as much as you can from them and beat them in the competition to prove that they’re wrong about us. Lashing out and fighting back in a fit of pique won’t get you anywhere. You guys might feel happy for a moment, but you won’t be able to get anything in the end. You really should learn more from Gu Yan.”
“Learn from Gu Yan? Do you want us to learn from her how not to admit our own mistakes and push all the blame on other people?” Lu Yubai said, his voice cold.
Fu Zhi then added, “No matter what you say, I’m the leader. I don’t want to take part in the exchange meeting, and my teammates will not come either.”
“You—” Yuan He was so furious that she did not know what to say. She had not expected Fu Zhi to be so hard to contain.
At the same time, a secretary stepped forward and chimed in, “Ms. Fu Zhi, many teams from other countries have sent Ms. Mia invitations. If Ms. Mia really refuses to teach us, we won’t be able to stay in second place! You—”
“That’s enough!” Mia shouted. She had been listening from the sidelines, and she could not hold herself back anymore.
“This is really funny. When Gu Yan is here, she’s able to handle every situation with a calm demeanor. You, on the other hand... Do you think you can defeat us if we don’t help you? It seems that education in China hasn’t taught you what it means to be a fool!”
Yuan He stared at Fu Zhi and said, “How about this... I’ll let them leave, and you will go and enjoy your meal in the restaurant first. Then, I will ask Gu Yan to follow up with you. I assure you that...”
“That’s not necessary! I initially thought Gu Yan was the team leader, so there was still a flimsy chance that you’d compete with us. That’s why I was willing to have this exchange meeting with you guys. Now that you sent this person to meet us. I will not give you guys any more chances. She’s the first person who has dared to speak to me like that. It’s very dangerous here, so you better pray that she will arrive safely at the competition on Saturday, President Yuan.”
As she was speaking, the restaurant waiter opened the door and emerged from the building.
The invitation was in Mia’s hand. She handed the invitation to the waiter, pointed at Fu Zhi, and said, “Keep this bunch of poor people away from us. I don’t want to see them while I’m dining.”
“Ms. Mia!” Yuan He was so nervous that she was sweating profusely. She grabbed Fu Zhi’s arm and said, “There are 10 judges in this competition. One of them is black, one of them is Chinese, and the rest of the judges are from Country M. Do you know that Mia’s family is the one sponsoring our association in Country M? She knows a lot more about the competition than us, so do you know how much we’re going to lose if you infuriate her?”
“President Yuan, what’s the point of talking to her now? She can’t even get into the restaurant.”
“We should have let Gu Yan lead the team. None of this would have happened! The Ford Family is extremely influential in Country M. Would they do something to us?”
“It’s all thanks to you that the money we spent has gone down the drain. We can’t even apply to be reimbursed by the country!”
While they were talking, the waiter told Mia, “I’m sorry, miss, but we can’t help you with the request you made.”
“Why not? I thought you guys only accepted one group of customers at a time. I’m your customer now, so why can’t you help me with my request?”
“Well, the thing is... We are Chinese, and we offer free dining for our fellow countrymen who represent China at competitions. Of course, if you think they have bothered you, you can upgrade to our annual SVIP and enjoy the premium service!”
The last thing Mia lacked was money. She replied without any hesitation, “Sure, let’s do that.”
“It’s going to be 10 million dollars. Do you want to pay by card or cash?”
‘Ten million dollars?!’
Even though Mia was rich, her family had set a limit for her. If she really spent ten million dollars to buy the annual subscription, it would exhaust all the money that she had saved up over the years.
The waiter put on a smile and pressed on. “What is it, miss? Perhaps you don’t have enough money to pay? In that case, I’m afraid I can’t kick them out.”
“Who told you that I don’t have money to pay? Here, take this card!” Mia snarled as she shot daggers at Fu Zhi. She wanted to do something for Gu Yan as well. She handed her card over to the waiter, who signed her up with a smile on his face.
Then, Mia pointed at Fu Zhi and said, “Can you kick them out now?”
The waiter replied with a troubled expression on his face, “I’m afraid I can’t do that...”
The expression on Mia’s face changed. “I’m already your restaurant’s SVIP, and now you tell me you can’t even do something like that for me?”
“Well, it wouldn’t be a problem under normal circumstances,” The waiter looked at Fu Zhi, offering her a grin before adding, “But Ms. Fu Zhi is our boss. Have you heard of an employee kicking their employer out? No, right?”
Mia was completely stunned. She knew Restaurant Guo Wei was a high-end restaurant, but they were very friendly to Chinese people and gave a lot of priority to Chinese. Never in her wildest dreams had she imagined that this restaurant had been opened by Fu Zhi!
She had wanted to slap Fu Zhi’s face by squandering her savings, but she had never expected the money to go into Fu Zhi’s pocket in the end.
Fu Zhi, who was carrying her bag on her back, led the dumbfounded Lu Yubai and Xia Tian to the exit of the restaurant. As she was walking, she said with her usual indifferent voice, “Happy spending, Ms. Mia. And as for whether I will get to the competition safely—”
She paused for a moment, and her voice then turned serious. “Neither you nor your father have the ability to stop me. Oh yeah, before I forget, I have to tell you that we Chinese are particularly concerned about courtesy. Therefore, I suggest that you watch your mouth in the future, Ms. Mia. After all, I don’t want to see you appear on the news one day above the headline ‘A woman was found dead in a dark alley with her mouth sewn shut’.”
Upon hearing Fu Zhi’s words, Yuan He wanted to stop her. However, she did not have the confidence to do so.
“Fu Zhi, I’ve never seen a candidate as undisciplined as you!” Yuan He hissed as she smacked the chair.
“The feeling is mutual,” Fu Zhi replied as she glanced at Yuan He. “I’ve never seen a president who forces the candidates to waste their time either.”
“What?! I’m wasting your time?!” Yuan He was so exasperated that she laughed. “Alright then. If you say so, then I’m going to report this to the headquarters and have them revoke your captaincy!”
Fu Zhi shrugged.
Yuan He asked her secretary to bring her a laptop and then video-called the headquarters of the Physics Association.
Meanwhile, at the Physics Association...
The members of the association were currently busy synthesizing the data of several participants when a video call came in.
When the secretary saw Yuan He’s message, she connected the video call to the big screen. Then, she announced, “Everyone please stop whatever you’re doing right now and look over here. Our team has encountered some problems.”
A second later, the call was connected and Yuan He’s face appeared on the screen. She seemed angry. Very angry. Her deep frown made the straight line of her eyebrows plunge downward, forming a malevolent expression on her face as she began filling everyone in on the whole story.
Everyone in the meeting room listened to the story with rapt attention. Then, after a few seconds that seemed like an eternity, all hell suddenly broke loose in the room and everyone erupted.
“What the hell does she think she’s doing? Does she have any idea how much effort we and Gu Yan have put in to make this exchange meeting a success?”
“She’s too impulsive. She makes her personal grudges a priority, and it was indeed a bit previous to let her lead the team. Is there any way to reverse the situation?”
Yuan He scoffed coldly, “Reverse the situation? How do you want us to reverse the situation? Mia’s family does not lack money or power. Right now, all we can do is bring Gu Yan over here and let her be the leader and talk with Mia. Maybe Mia will change her mind.”
“Based on what you’re saying, you don’t really see the exchange meeting as the key to our victory, do you?” Fu Zhi’s voice chimed in. She looked straight at Yuan He, offering her a faint smile.
“Of course! Otherwise, how are we supposed to win the competition? By depending on you? Fu Zhi, don’t blame me for not warning you. You are now harming the interests of your own country. Since you have a backbone, can you bear the consequences?”
“Sure, why not. However, since you think we’re going to lose the competition, let’s bet,” Fu Zhi said as she glanced across at the members of the Physics Association. “How’s that sound?”
Yuan He frowned. “What would you like to bet on?”
“If I win the competition, you and all your people are going to leave the Physics Association. However, if I lose, you can do whatever you want to me. What do you think?”