What sort of age were we living in, when all loyalties were abolished, except devotion to one man?
In Ma Bo's memoir, Blood Rest Sunset (1995), Bo has a friend and schoolmate named Lei Xia. They are initially very close—best friends one might say—and Xia stands up for him, even fighting on his behalf at one point. Bo writes him a letter, thanking him for his loyalty: "Our friendship, forged in a bloody struggle, will last forever" (53). Alas, that is not to be true. Bo is denounced as a counter-revolutionary and arrested. In chapter 16, which is arguably the one in which their relationship changes, the authorities ask Xia to give damning evidence against Bo. He's really given little choice, as the alternative, according to the political instructor, is to "wallow in the filth with him" (96). Xia is also in a difficult position because his father was a nationalist during the civil war, which means he is always under suspicion. The book is set during the Cultural Revolution when paranoia, suspicion, and mistrust were running rampant.
Even though he agonizes over his decision, Xia, to protect himself, betrays and denounces his friend. With this, their friendship is broken. Bo is interrogated, tortured, and exiled. He is utterly alone, with even his own mother abandoning him. The book is very much about how the Communist party, personified by Mao, becomes more important than friends, family, and lovers, asking the people to sacrifice everything for the party.