Chapter 48 – Chief Zhou was retiring!
The next day.
“Good morning everyone.”
“Morning, Xiao Dong.”
“Good morning firefighter! Hahaha!”
“Don’t call me that.”
After a short chat, it was time to work. Zhou Changchun did not come to work today. No one had seen him since yesterday afternoon. Maybe he was on sick leave again. After all, Zhou Changchun had cerebrovascular diseases and other chronic illness. His health had been in bad shape. Without anyone supervising in the office, everyone was not doing their work. Guo Panwei was looking at the stock market. Guo Shunjie was surfing some forums on the internet. Most of the work in the office was done by Tan Limei, Dong Xuebing, and Zhuang Zhi.
“Chief Zhou had taken dozens of days of medical leave this year.” Tan Limei grumbled.
Dong Xuebing was shocked. “So many days?”
Tan Limei replied: “It is considered not a lot. Last year was also the same. When Chief Zhou was not around, my workload increases a lot. Luckily you and Zhuang Zhi are around this year. If not, I can’t cope with all the work.” She looked at Guo Shunjie and the rest. “Clinging to a post without doing any work!”
Dong Xuebing laughed. “I think Chief Zhou will be back tomorrow. Let me help you with the printing.”
During lunchtime, they received news that Zhou Changchun was hospitalized for his cerebrovascular illness.
This was not surprising by many of them. They were used to it.
Guo Panwei immediately goes and ask which hospital and ward Zhou Changchun was in. “I will go and visit Chief Zhou.”
“I will go too.” Dong Xuebing does not want to be left behind. Although he was now much closer to Zhou Changchun but visiting him at the hospital will leave a good impression with the leader. The leader will not think: I am in the hospital, and you do not even visit me? What are you thinking?
Guo Shunjie and Changjuan also wanted to do. In the end, all of them went to Youyi Hospital in two taxis.
“Chief Zhou, how are you feeling?”
“Are you feeling better?”
Zhou Changchun was lying in bed. He looked several years older since he last appeared in the office a few days earlier. He does not look well. His wife was beside him clearing his lunch box. She forced a smile as Dong Xuebing, and the rest entered the ward. She put the fruits and flowers by the window and let them sit beside the Zhou Changchun.
“All of you are here?” Zhou Changchun sighed. “I am fine. But I should not be able to return to work these few days.”
Changjuan pretended to be sad: “Chief Zhou, we will be lost if you are not in the office leading us.”
Guo Panwei also pretended to be nice. He turned to Zhou Changchun’s wife: “Auntie, if you need any help, let me know. I can stay behind in the afternoon to help you take care of Chief Zhou.”
Zhou Changchun’s wife replied. “Thank you. But I can still cope.”
Zhou Changchun waved his hand. “No need to stay behind to accompany me. Go back to work. There are lots of work waiting for you all in the office.” His condition was quite serious. He even had difficulties walking to the bathroom. His wife had to help him walk. Seems like he could not return to work soon.
After chatting for a while with Zhou Changchun, Dong Xuebing and the rest were about to return to the office.
But Zhou Changchun hesitated for a while and called out: “Panwei, Xiao Bing, I want to talk to you two.”
Guo Shunjie glanced at Dong Xuebing and Guo Panwei before walking away. Tan Limei, Changjuan, and Zhuang Zhi also walked out of the ward. All of them knew that Guo Panwei and Dong Xuebing held a higher status in Chief Zhou’s heart. Dong Xuebing had helped Zhou Changchun rescued the important documents. Guo Panwei had been loyal to Zhou Changchun for years and had been his right-hand man.
In the ward, Guo Panwei and Dong Xuebing looked at each other. They were standing there waiting for Zhou Changchun to speak.
But Zhou Changchun kept quiet for a while before he sighed. “The both of you are my most trusted subordinates. In the future……” He paused for a while before continuing. “In the future……. Work hard.” Dong Xuebing and Guo Panwei were wondering what Zhou Changchun was trying to say. Zhou Changchun waved his hand. “Go back. My wife will send you out.”
Zhou Changchun walked them out to the corridor.
Dong Xuebing turned to her and said: “Auntie, there’s no need to walk us out.”
Zhou Changchun’s wife seems like she had lots of things to say to them. But in the end, she only said: “Please take care of the General Affairs Office in the future.”
Guo Panwei immediately replied: “Don’t worry. We will do our work well.”
Dong Xuebing felt something was off. It seems that the husband and wife were implying something.
Back at the office, Dong Xuebing carried on with his work as usual.
At about 1pm, Guo Shunjie suddenly received a phone call and started to do his work seriously. He did his own photocopying and offered to deliver documents. After a while, Guo Panwei who returned from outside behaved the same way as Guo Shunjie. They started to do their work eagerly with a smile on their faces. Guo Panwei even threw all his stock market graphs and charts away.
Dong Xuebing was confused. He asked Zhuang Zhi: “What happened?”
Zhuang Zhi looked at both of them: “I don’t know. Maybe it’s time for our increments?”
Changjuan and Old Yan were also confused.
Just before they finished work, Tan Limei who returned from the Political Section Office told them a piece of shocking news. “Hey, hey, have you all heard the news?”
Dong Xuebing asked: “What news?”
Zhuang Zhi scratched his head: “Are we getting a raise?”
“You wish!” Tan Limei rolled her eyes at him. “It’s about Chief Zhou. Chief Zhou will be retiring due to his illness.” Tan Limei’ words attracted the attention of Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi. “I heard this news from the Political Section, and they told me that the next Chief will be selected from one of us in the office.”
Dong Xuebing was shocked: “Is this real?”
“Ah?” Changjuan exclaimed: “Chief Zhou has not reached the retirement age yet. Is his illness so serious?”
Tan Limei lowered her voice: “I heard two versions. One was the leaders were unhappy with Chief Zhou for taking so many days of medical leave. The other rumor is about Chief Zhou’s finances. I heard that there were some issues with his finances and he was “offered” to retire. It was not voluntary. If it were, Chief Zhou would have told us just now at the hospital.”
This was a piece of alarming news. Old Yan heard this and paused for a while before continuing reading his papers.
The two Guos should have received this news earlier. No wonder they suddenly became so hardworking.
No matter Chief Zhou was forced to retire or retired voluntary, the position of Deputy Chief was up for grabs.