Chapter 80.2 – Concubine Selection and Carrier Pigeon
Seven days passed by quickly. Jun Zi City became very busy due to the arrival of these beautiful women.
Translations by www (.) vmnovels (.) com, if you’re reading this anywhere else, then it was stolen.
At the same time, An Zi Ran received the ledgers sent by Steward Su and a report on everything that happened in An Yuan County during his absence.
About the ledgers.
The An family helped the people of An Yuan County, they prospered together, and got rid of the plight of poverty. Although the money was scattered, the return was very rich.
Before An Zi Ran left An Yuan County he bought up all the farmers’ excess foodstuff. He sold that along with the large amount of grains he stored in his warehouse to Fu Wu Tian at a high price. The difference between purchase and selling price was huge, so he easily earned back all the money that he spent in the past.
Translations by Vanilla Muse.
The money that Fu Wu Tian got from confiscating the wealth of greedy officials belonged to the empire. Anything that was left over would have to be returned to the national treasury and given to the Chong Ming Emperor. Hence, An Zi Ran did not feel a shred of guilt for the money he earned from Fu Wu Tian.
However, there was one matter that An Zi Ran took extra note of.
The Da Guang Rice Shop in Wan Shan County has always been a big competitor of the An family’s rice business.
After An Chang Fu’s death, Boss Chen of Da Guang Rice Shop wanted to use this opportunity to suppress the An family’s rice business, so he deliberately lowered the price of rice. This did indeed cause some damage to the An family’s rice business, but the loss did not last long.
An Zi Ran had decisively lowered the price of rice to its normal level, which was lower than the price that the Da Guang Rice Shop was offering.
Boss Chen thought that An Zi Ran was deliberately challenging him. From that time on he bore a grudge, but he did not dare to keep the price down, because he couldn’t make much money. He was a businessman after all, and he knew that he couldn’t damage his business due to a moment of temper, especially since the other party was just a little brat.
After that, the An family started buying up rice in large quantities.
Boss Chen took advantage of this opportunity to extend an olive branch to Manager Feng. As a result, he was played by Manager Feng and waited stupidly for Manager Feng to reply. Then the disaster in Chang Province broke out. The An family took this opportunity to expand their wealth. Only then did Boss Chen come to see the truth.
After he discovered that he was played, Boss Chen found some people to go to the An family’s rice shop several times to make trouble, but he did not succeed, because every time his people appeared, there would be a group of bouncers guarding the shop.
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After a few times, Boss Chen guessed that he was being watched.
He was not willing to let it go after being played like that, not until County Magistrate Zhang of An Yuan County personally came up to him. He was just a businessman, what did he have to fight a government official with? Thus, brushing off his cold sweat, he stealthily ran away.
The person who was monitoring Boss Chen was Ah Ye.
When An Zi Ran left An Yuan County, he did not see him immediately.
After going over the ledgers, An Zi Ran wrote a letter to Steward Su. This Ah Ye could be used for important matters, but he still needed to be further investigated.
He was just about to call someone to send the letter to An Yuan County when Fu Wu Tian pushed the door open.
He saw the letter in his hand. “Who is it for?”
An Zi Ran replied, “Steward Su. I’m preparing to bring Ah Ye over to the capital.” He was preparing to develop his career in Jun Zi City, but he needed manpower. Although Ah Ye was a local snake* of An Yuan County, his mind was flexible. He might be able to accomplish big things in the capital.
[*T/N: 地头蛇 di tou she translates to “local bully / tyrant / regional mafia boss,” but I don’t recall Ah Ye being described as such previously. He seems more like a regular smart (and maybe shady) person.]
“Wang fei, if you lack people, you can talk to this prince,” Fu Wu Tian said.
“Let’s talk about this later. Right now, I haven’t figured out exactly what I want to do.” An Zi Ran shook his head. They had sent people to look for cottonseeds, but there was still no news from that matter. Even if he had plans he could not implement them. And it involved a wide range of things. He still needed to reconsider many matters, so he was preparing to consider other means of passage for his plans.
Fu Wu Tian suddenly took away the letter in his hand. “Wang fei, it would take more than half a day to get this letter into Steward Su’s hands, right?”
An Zi Ran heard another meaning in his words. “Do you have other methods?”
“Is wang fei forgetting that there is such a thing as carrier pigeon?”
“You have?” An Zi Ran only just then recalled. In this backward time and space there was no convenient modes of transportation like those in the twenty-first century, but there were carrier pigeons for messengers.
Fu Wu Tian felt that he was being underestimated by wang fei, so he took him to the back courtyard of the prince’s palace.
Although An Zi Ran has been married into the prince’s palace for some time now, he had never been in the back courtyard, because people were forbidden from stepping into that place. He had not been curious and had never been there.
As soon as they entered, a flock of carrier pigeons rushed at them.
“These are pigeons specially trained by the prince’s palace. They are twice as fast as the average pigeon. It only takes a short time to fly from Jun Zi City to An Yuan County,” Fu Wu Tian explained into his ear.
An Zi Ran was silent.
Fu Wu Tian’s laughter sounded leisurely.
An Zi Ran looked at him and suddenly thought of a matter. “Do you have time today?”
Without hesitation, Fu Wu Tian said, “If it’s to accompany wang fei then I always have time.”
“Go out with me in the afternoon.”