222 Run Away
Run away together…
Ye Shuang held her cheeks and sighed to herself. "Who would have thought Mrs. Zuo is still so… romantic?"
Han Chu's hands that moved the cake to his lips stopped, and he said, "Is that what you should be focused on?"
Albert held the fork and also sighed. "I heard easterners have a high standard for women, but it looks like I'm mistaken."
Actually, both America and China valued loyalty to marriage, but the latter was due to traditional values while the former was predominantly due to the teachings of Christianity. In comparison, Americans treated both genders more equally in terms of marriage and sex, but in China, due to Confucianism, even though current society had improved much in terms of gender equality, there were still some traditions that remained, and thus, women were still subject to certain restrictions.
Albert was surprised because Mrs. Zuo dared to be so… independent‽
First, an extra-marital affair was something that would be critiqued in most culture, and Mrs. Zuo already had children on top of that. When Ye Shuang said that Mrs. Zuo would be added as the target, Albert had thought that he would not come up with any results. After all, in this country, this kind of woman had no reason to have an affair, and the pressure that she would face after the affair was exposed would be unimaginable.
Ye Shuang ignored Albert and turned to discuss with Han Chu. "Mrs. Zuo is someone who follows the rules closely. Her life will either be completely chill and calm, or it will be filled with great highs and lows. The rebound will be huge after years of suppression. That is pretty much a constant. Now the main issue is whether she knows what is going on and is cooperating with her lover or doesn't know anything and is just being used."
"What does that have to do with us?" Han Chu bit the cake and looked at Ye Shuang. "Our responsibility is to conduct the investigation. Zuo Yuanhang is the one who will make the decision. We only need to know who did what. Why she did so, what her reason was, whether she is being used… To be honest, that has no influence on the result."
"Well, I pity her, that's all." Ye Shuang shrugged. "After all, we're both women."
It was hard for women to get to a higher status than men, and that was more than just an issue of perception.
Everyone had their role in life. From the bigger picture, first was the societal role, like what kind of occupation one had and the things that one should do. Next came the biological role. Males protected the land while females procreated. Last was the personal role, and that depended on personal value and preference.
Just focusing on the biological role. If the female role was to procreate, then she would naturally not have that much time to focus on anything else. Furthermore, males were more territorial, and if that was translated into the modern lifestyle, it meant that they were more aggressive in the business world. Of course, some women could be aggressive as well, but due to biological limitations, they needed to overcome more things and give up more things compared to males, who had the natural advantage.
To give a straight-forward example, if you're a woman, should you focus on your work or your marriage? You want both? Fine, then do you want to have children after marriage? Yes? Good, then, are you not going to look after your child after their birth? Unless you don't want to be a woman, these things would have dominated the entirety of your life.
On the other hand, even if you think you can go to work during pregnancy and only go to the hospital at the very last minute and return straight to work after childbirth, handing the child over to the older generation or nanny to take care of, only seeing them before and after work… Good, you're indeed a powerful woman, but what kind of man would want you?
Women could do things that men should, but men could never do the things that women should. That would collapse the structure of society. Before the whole society's perception was overhauled, it was undeniable that women would be at a disadvantage compared to men. Yes, there were examples of powerful women, but in terms of statistics, how large was that percentage?
What had happened to Mrs. Zuo could be argued to be unluckier than An Zixuan. The latter was just sad after the relationship was over, but the former was toying with her life and reputation. Once the affair was exposed, be it the criticism from Mrs. Zuo's maternal family or from society, the pressure Mrs. Zuo would face would be harsher than An Zixuan.
Han Chu could not help but glance at Ye Shuang. No matter how good he was at rational analysis, his gender and identity prevented him from understanding the minute details of this issue. Perhaps he did consider some of them, but he could not really understand them. "I don't really understand what's holding you up. but… do you plan to lead the conversation to lower the sin that might befall upon Mrs. Zuo's shoulders?"
"Well, there are culprits and accomplices." Albert had already finished his pasta. He wiped his lips and leaned back with satisfaction. "Miss Ye plans to intervene into the judgement process, right?"
"It's not that. I don't have that much time." Ye Shuang thought about it. "I just want to investigate things clearer, and as for the decision that Zuo Yuanhang comes to in the end, of course, that is his prerogative."
Han Chu thought about it and nodded. "Even though there's no need to do that, this kind of small request is still acceptable."
He paused before continuing. He sounded like he was lecturing. "Xiao Shuang, you have to understand something. Law is not justice. Law only represents fairness—no matter the person, no matter the reason. Even if you pity her, you cannot challenge the fairness due to personal emotion because fairness represents order, and order is the basis for a stable society. Such is the situation, and if you position yourself a bit too harshly, it'll be easy for you to take the wrong turn."
"How come I feel like this sounds so familiar?" Albert sipped through the straw when his face suddenly changed. "Sh*t! That's what you told our supervisor two years ago!"
Two years ago, since FBI had failed so many times to recruit Anthony, for the first time, they decided to frame the man. Honestly, due to nature of the CIA, it was fairly common for them to do something like this. After all, they were the type of people who often ignored the law. However, for FBI, as a unit that is attached to the federal bureau, that was not exactly within character.
These people wanted to play on the dark side, and that was a huge step away from FBI's usual culture. When the thing started to surface, Anthony was spending the new year at Han Chu's. The encroaching hands were all chopped off by Han Chu, and then a series of sharp slaps were sent to various people in the FBI. Han Chu had said something similar then. There had been some accusatory things that followed. In the end, the result was two important figures in the unit had to hand in their resignation letters to settle the situation.
Because of this, Han Chu's name made a round at the FBI at the time. After realizing the man's power in China, the FBI's attitude became more cautious in terms of his good friend, Anthony. Without any real need, coming after both Han Chu and Anthony was not a good choice.
Han Chu's quiet gaze scanned Albert. "Was I mistaken?"
It was because he was not wrong that they were so mad! This was a humiliation! Albert picked up the glass of fruit juice. He sucked on the straw loudly to express his dissatisfaction. Ye Shuang felt like she had accidentally stumbled across some insider information and temporarily forgot about Mrs. Zuo. She turned to Albert with stars in her eyes—Please share.
Albert ignored her, so Ye Shuang turned to Han Chu. Han Chu gave her face, and under Albert's scrutiny, he shook his head. "It's bad for you to know so much."
"Oh…" Ye Shuang sighed. With that over, there was nothing else for her to do for the rest of the cruise. Albert continued to investigate Mrs. Zuo's extra-marital affair. Ye Shuang either accompanied Han Chu to go fishing; accompanied Lu Shaoyue to the movies; or when she ran into the two kids on the deck, she played with them and took the chance to steal kisses from the boy.
The cruise soon reached its end. The last night was the girl's birthday party, and the next afternoon, when they arrived in Chaohai's pier, Albert had a complete report on his hands. With another folder of evidence, he handed everything over to Zuo Yuanhang.
"Albert and I will return to San Lin City first." Han Chu bade farewell to Ye Shuang at the pier. "The rest of the account, you'll need to clear with Zuo Yuanhang. Come home after you're done with the report and everything else."
Ye Shuang had been a woman for four days and three nights. Until now, Han Chu could not understand theory to her gender swap, but in reality, it was not that important. After all, this was just his curiosity—it did not matter that much.
"Okay, I believe I'll be able to return tomorrow." Ye Shuang glanced at Albert, who went off to talk on the phone. "But it'll be Mr. Ye Shuang who returns. Are you sure it'll be fine with Albert there?"
Han Chu sighed. "You can't hide outside forever, right? Don't worry, if I stay in San Lin City. He won't dare to do stuff that crosses the line, but if you accidentally expose yourself from your daily behavior, that is your problem."
Albert's nationality and identity were too sensitive, and since the FBI had been taught a lesson by Han Chu, when Han Chu was around, Albert would be more cautious. Plus, he was too focused on annoying Anthony to give Ye Shuang much attention.
Ye Shuang sighed. "There are some things in San Lin City that I need to deal with. You're right, it's not a solution for me to stay away forever."
She had received so many messages from An Zixuan and Yao Zhixing, so she had to return soon.