Chapter 56 – Evidence
Soon there was movement on An Chang De’s side.
This time, in addition to Qian You Hao, there were two more people. They were all Jiang Zhong Ting’s trusted aides.
In the letter, An Chang De wrote that he was very certain that the other party was a mere businessman. But they were still not at ease, so they were ready to investigate again. Although Jiang Zhong Ting was an official, it was still impossible for them to strike the An family immediately.
Right now, in An Yuan County, the An family’s prestige would not lose to County Magistrate Zhang.
“These past few days, have there been any changes within the An family?” When Qian You Hao entered the door, he unceremoniously sat down in the main seat of the great hall, taking up the position of master of the house as if nothing was wrong.
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An Chang De was too busy tripping over himself to please the other party, so of course he wouldn’t oppose this action.
An Chang De immediately reported what he had heard. “Qian da ren, there has been no big change in the family. There is only one thing to say. Some time ago, many people in An Yuan County borrowed rice from the An family, so yesterday they went out and bought a lot of grains.”
“As far as I know, some rice fields in An Yuan County are almost ready to be harvested. Is there any other purpose for purchasing a large amount of rice at this time?” Qian You Hao have also heard about this matter, but he has more considerations.
An Chang De thought for a moment, “It shouldn’t be. The area affected by this year’s snowfall is bigger than ever. Even when it comes to the harvest, the An family will not receive much rice.”
Qian You Hao nodded and accepted this explanation.
An Chang De smiled obsequiously and said, “So, Qian da ren, when will you be ready to target the An family?”
Qian You Hao shot him a contemptuous glance. “The An family is not loved by the people of An Yuan County. The method that you used before is no longer suitable. We can’t use any old reason to arrest the An family. An Zi Ran has only took over the An family for a short time, and have not yet revealed any weaknesses that we can exploit, so we can only start from An Chang Fu’s angle.”
“Um…” An Chang De was dumbfounded. “But isn’t he already dead?”
Qian You Hao said impatiently, “He is dead, but there might be evidence of his misdeeds from the past. If there is evidence, then the government can hone in on this angle to attack.”
An Chang Fu was not an honest businessman. He must have committed a lot of illegal acts in the past. This method was much more useful than deliberately trying to frame the An family. At that time, even if the man from Jun Zi City wants to intervene, there would be no way. No one can fight against the law in Da Ya, unless he wants to throw himself into the mess along with his male-wife.
“That is indeed a good method.” An Chang De thought about it and then realized abruptly.
Although there was no way to directly target An Zi Ran, as long as the wealth of the An family is proven to be obtained through illegal means, then the government could confiscate the property of the family.
The more he thought, the more excited he was. He completely forgot that when the wealth of the An family was taken over by the government, it would be impossible for a nobody like him to pocket any portion of that wealth. It was a gamble with a tiger.
Qian You Hao looked at An Chang De’s excited expression and his eyes were full of ridicule. He was only a mere xiu cai*. But An Chang De did not notice it at all.
[*T/N: a person who passed the county level imperial exam]
Inside the house, the schemes of the occupants were different. Outside the house, there was someone who carefully remembered every word of their conversation.
When the sound of footsteps approached his hiding place, the man quietly made his exit.
Steward Su went into the study room. Fu Wu Tian, who often stayed in the study room, was not there this time. The study was quiet. There was only An Zi Ran sitting at the desk and drawing up a plan. “Young Master, there is news from Ah Ye* again.”
[*T/N: Nickname for Xiao Ye, the one spying for AZR]
An Zi Ran looked up from his writing. “What is the situation?”
“They want to dig up evidence on the late Master’s crimes.” Steward Su’s expression was a bit complicated. He followed the late Master for many years and was the most trusted person of the Master, so he was well aware of all of the late Master’s actions. If the other party managed to dig up evidence, it would indeed be detrimental to the An family.
An Zi Ran was silent and did not speak.
Steward Su knew that the young master was not aware of certain things within the family. Worried that he would misunderstand, he explained, “Young Master, in the past the late Master did indeed commit unscrupulous acts, but it’s definitely not to the point of ruining the family. I can guarantee this point. What I’m worried about is the other side falsifying evidence and making things go out of control.”
“I understand. It is useless to pursue the past.”
Steward Su thought that the young master really wasn’t concerned about the past, and then asked, “Then, what do we do next?”
An Zi Ran tapped his pen lightly against the table top. He said, “No matter what the evidence, it would not be good for the An family. We can’t give them any excuse to target the An family.” The internal affairs of the family have not been resolved. He did not want to have even more troubles.
“Then I will have Ah Ye continue to monitor them, and if they find any evidence, we’ll snatch it?”
“Inappropriate!” An Zi Ran shook his head. “This matter is very important. I still don’t know whether we can trust Ah Ye or not. We must find someone trustworthy for this task. Furthermore, they must know martial arts.”
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Steward Su immediately thought of a potential candidate.
At this moment, Fu Wu Tian’s leisurely figure came in.
The eyes of the master and servant both fell on him.
Fu Wu Tian was not surprised at all. He had already heard their conversation from outside. “Since wang fei trusts this prince so much, it seems that this prince will have to personally take up the task to live up to wang fei’s trust.”
The corner of An Zi Ran’s mouth turned up lightly. “Wang ye, I just want to borrow one of your subordinates.” He couldn’t afford to employ a prince.
Fu Wu Tian sighed. “What a pity.”
An Zi Ran’s face revealed no expression. “It’s not a pity at all!”
“…Wang fei is really heartless.”
“Thank you for the compliment.”
Big hugs to all the fabulous people who provided me with warm drinks for the cold winter season! ☕
Lady J 😊