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There were only two female police officers in the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit. Everyone knew for a fact that they were nowhere comparable to An Xiaoning in terms of beauty and capability.
“Team Leader An, you’re the most outstanding and brilliant female police officer in the two units. Be it in terms of brains, brawn, or beauty, the other two female officers are simply no match for you. If you don’t participate in the mission, I highly doubt that they’d be able to successfully complete the task,” said police officer Zhang.

“Team Leader Zhang, I hope you understand that I didn’t agree to join the police force to become an undercover spy,” said An Xiaoning, who was fully aware of the purpose of going undercover. However, she was not confident that she could perform the task of being an undercover spy well. Thus, why would she bring upon herself unnecessary trouble and put herself in a dangerous predicament by accepting the task?

Pan Zhenghui agreed with An Xiaoning, “That’s right. It’s entirely up to Team Leader An to decide if she wants to go ahead with the mission. I decided to let her attend this briefing so she could decide if she wanted to join the operation. Due to the fact that this undercover mission would span across an extended period of time and is extremely critical, the higher-ups are offering a generous reward of 200 thousand dollars. I’d like to know if any of the male officers are willing to volunteer? Please raise your hand if you are.”

Noticing that no one from the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit had volunteered, Zu Dong raised his hand all of a sudden and said, “I’m willing to go.”

Both Pan Zhenghui and An Xiaoning were stunned.

“They’re all so reluctant to go. Why did you volunteer?”

“For the monetary reward. If the leaders didn’t appoint us to take over this mission, I reckon no one would be willing to go. But I am more than willing, because my mother has been staying at the hospital to receive a treatment that is very costly. Thus, I really need this sum of money,” Zu Dong explained truthfully.

With a nod of agreement, Pan Zhenghui answered, “Alright, you shall go then. I was planning to just send one of you if no one is willing to volunteer in the end. Since Team Leader An doesn’t wish to take part, I’ll have to pick one of the two female officers in the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit. Team Leader Zhang, between the two of them, who do you think is a better option?”

“Chief, neither of them would make the cut. One of them is a mother of two and would have to return home every day while the other is poorly-skilled in martial arts. Besides, they’re not exactly visually appealing. I doubt they’d be able to sneak into the drug ring to obtain the crucial information we need. If Team Leader An is willing to go undercover, the mission would be a guaranteed success,” police officer Zhang said bluntly.

“Seems like Team Leader Zhang has a lot of faith in me. I’ve never been through training at the Police Academy, how are you so sure it’d be a guaranteed success? I’m not even that confident myself. Team Leader Zhang, you’re not praising me but giving me pressure instead,” said An Xiaoning, folding her arms.

Pan Zhenghui waved his hand in disagreement. “Team Leader Zhang, I completely respect Xiaoning’s decision. If she’s not willing to go, then don’t force her to. We all know how capable she is, she’s able to solve more cases in a month than you guys can in half a year. You don’t have to keep emphasizing that.”

Police Officer Zhang’s face stiffened upon hearing Pan Zhenghui’s words. As the team leader of the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit, it was rather embarrassing to constantly be compared to An Xiaoning’s team, who had been surpassing them in solving cases ever since the special unit was established. Besides, her impeccable efficiency was bound to make him look bad, more or less.

Realizing that they had gone quiet, Pan Zhenghui added, “Since Team Leader Zhang thinks that these two female police officers are not suited to go undercover, I’ll just send Zu Dong’s name first. The operation will commence in just a few days. I’ll try to find a suitable candidate for the female spy from the armed police unit. That’s all I have for you today. It’s getting late, those of you who have clocked out may leave. As for the rest, you may resume duty.”

Everyone then dismissed themselves. Six or seven police officers exited the police station while the remaining ones resumed their duty.

“Team Leader, it was right of you to turn the task down,” Ma Jianguo said softly.

“Why?” asked An Xiaoning.

“Other than Zu Dong, who only went because of the reward, everyone else was reluctant for a reason. Last year, Chief had also called for a meeting to select four undercover spies. Do you know what happened in the end?” Ma Jianguo whispered.


“None of them came back alive. The monetary reward was given to their family instead. They were also honored as heroes, but what’s the point? They lost their lives in the end. Going undercover is not an easy task, especially in dangerous associations like a drug ring. There are traps everywhere in those places, and one must be careful and cautious at all times. Even then, there are still some dangers that you can’t guard against. More often than not, spies get killed before they even get their hands on the key information.”

“That’s not the only reason why I refused to take part. It’s also because I won’t get to live in freedom for at least a few months once the operation commences. I don’t want to be away from the person whom I want to see every day.”

Ma Jianguo chuckled and said, “I totally understand. Team Leader Zhang wishes so hard that you would go, because that way, the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit wouldn’t appear incompetent compared to us.”

“It’s too bad his wishes won’t come true. I’ll be taking a day off tomorrow.”

“That means we’ll have to run errands for the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit…” Ma Jianguo turned to see that Pan Zhenghui was walking towards them. He then pleaded, “Team Leader, please tell Chief to give us a day off too. Zu Dong still has to visit his mother at the hospital and help his father take care of her. Gong Le and I need to rest too.”

Thinking that her colleagues ought to get some rest too, An Xiaoning agreed, “I’ll tell him about it. No promises that he’ll agree though.”

“Thank you, Team Leader,” Ma Jianguo said, grinning from ear to ear.

“Chief… I won’t be coming in tomorrow. Do allow Officer Ma, Zu Dong, and Gong Le to take a day off too,” An Xiaoning said to Pan Zhenghui.

“But we’re short of manpower at the Serious Crimes Investigation Unit. They’ll have to report there whenever you’re not around,” Pan Zhenghui said in disagreement.

“Chief, I just think that since we’re a team and work together all the time, it won’t be fair for me to take a day off while they continue to work.” Noticing that Pan Zhenghui was hestitating, An Xiaoning added, “The Serious Crimes Investigation Unit’s efficiency in solving cases can’t be compared to us at all. I can’t say that it’s all my hard work alone, they’ve contributed greatly too. It’s not fair to make them work the same hours as the other officers who don’t perform as efficiently.”

“Team Leader An, I see you’re pleading on behalf of your members. Alright, I’ll allow them to take a break whenever you do,” Pan Zhenghui answered smilingly.

Ma Jianguo hugged Pan Zhenghui in exhilaration and thanked him profusely. “Chief, thank you so much.”

“You ought to thank your team leader, not me.”

“Yes, yes, right.”

Extremely agitated, Ma Jianguo extended his arms in a bid to hug An Xiaoning, who quickly dodged and said, “You don’t have to hug me. Just continue to work hard. Do inform the two of them as well.”

“Of course.”

An Xiaoning then walked towards her car and unlocked the door with her keys before hopping in.

Just as she revved up the engine, she felt a gun being held against her temple.

Staring at the rear mirror while remaining composed, she said, “You did this the previous time. Are you really going to use the same method again?”

“As long as it works, does it matter how many times I use it? Didn’t think we’d meet again so soon, did you?” Xi Bolai answered with a smirk.