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After Matchmaker He was driven away, the Zhao family thought it was over, but they were wrong. The Li family refused to give up.
In fact, Li Zugen didn’t want to marry Zhao Jinge. He was very thin and small while Zhao Jinge was a head taller than him. If they were to stand together, others might think that he was the ger. In that case, it would be strange for him to become interested in Zhao Jinge.
But his family . . .
Li Zugen’s father was as thin and small as he was, and his mother was not a very hard worker. The eldest of his four children was only ten years old. Although he was small, he ate a lot.
They . . . couldn’t just sit still when there was nothing to eat.
If there was another choice, the Li family would certainly not choose Zhao Jinge, but was there any other choice? Under the persuasion of his parents, Li Zugen gritted his teeth and agreed to marry Zhao Jinge. Then they started taking actions.
After Matchmaker He had a bad start, Li Liu, Li Zugen’s mother went to battle in person. She found the Zhao family, complained and cried, and asked for a marriage between Zhao Jinge and her son.
Zhao Liu was naturally unwilling, but Li Zugen’s mother was so insistent that she would not give up until she achieved her goal. She came to pressure her every day. And she was different from Matchmaker He. Matchmaker He belittled Zhao Jinge, but she praised Zhao Jinge from the very beginning. She said that she really wanted Zhao Jinge to become her daughter-in-law, and she would certainly be nice to him in the future.
“Jinge is a kid I have liked since he was a child. If it wasn’t for that little bastard in my family who took a blind fancy to Xue, Jinge would have already become my daughter-in-law.”
“I don’t think there is anyone better than Jinge within ten miles or even in town. How could he be rejected? You can’t listen to this matchmaker’s nonsense.”
“When Jinge comes to our house, we will treat him well and never neglect him.”
“Those four children are going to leave in the future. Jinge has entered our family, so I will make sure that his children will become the most importantly ones.”
. . .
When Li Liu went to the Zhao family’s house every day, she seemed to be very sincere, just like she did when she asked for marriage with Zhao Jinge before. She seemed so sincere that, gradually, the people in Hexi Village began to speak up for her.
Although Zhao Liu didn’t like to socialize with others, there were still some people who knew her in Hexi Village. These days, the Zhao family was very lively. These people came to the Zhao family to watch and help Zhao Liu.
“Your Jinge can’t stay unmarried forever.”
“Remember that bald old man from the village who couldn’t marry a wife? He starved to death in the house last year and no one knew.”
“That man was injured and ill. Someone should have helped him.”
. . .
There was no malice in these people. They were sincere in their persuasion.
Zhao Liu herself was not such a firm person. She didn’t like Li Zugen much before, but now, after listening to these people talking, she suddenly found Li Zugen to be not particularly bad. Their family was a mess, but somehow, they still had their land. As long as Jinge was willing to work, he would not go hungry. Moreover, their family’s son was very thin, so Jinge could always beat him up.
After Jinge gets married, maybe he can live a good life?
Zhao Liu thought so, so that night, she spoke to Zhao Jinge. “Jinge, the Li family comes here every day . . .”
“Mother, I will not marry him,” Zhao Jinge said determined, frowning at the same time.
When Jiang Zhen went to buy seafood, at first, he said that he would be gone for about five days, but now it had been more than ten days. Why hasn’t he come back yet? He had no one to inquire about news regarding Jiang Zhen. He was worried and was pestered every day by the Li family, so he was in a really bad mood.
Zhao Liu sighed. “Jinge, mother knows that you would miss father and mother, but you also need to think about your future . . .”
“Mother, anyway, I will not marry Li Zugen.” Zhao Jinge was determined.
“You don’t want to become a stepmother or do you hate what their family did before?” Zhao Liu asked again.
“Neither,” Zhao Jinge said. That Li Zugen annulled the engagement did not make him feel bad. And as for being a stepmother, he really didn’t feel anything.
“And why is that?” Zhao Liu was puzzled.
Zhao Jinge hesitated for a moment before saying, “I don’t like him.” I now . . . I like Jiang Zhen.
When Zhao Liu heard this answer, she was even more puzzled. It took her a while to figure it out. “Do you think he is too thin? Yes, he is also too small!”
Zhao Jinge didn’t like Li Zugen. Of course, it was not because of his stature, but Zhao Liu thought so, so he accepted it and reiterated, “I won’t marry him.”
“Well, Jinge, if you don’t want to marry, forget it.” Zhao Liu sighed.
Zhao Jinge breathed a sigh of relief.
On the other side, Jiang Zhen put away his stall and casually tasted Wang Haisheng’s cooking. Then he went in the fishing boat full of fishy smell and fell asleep.
These days, although he hired a child to help him, he was still very tired due to overworking.
Jiang Zhen didn’t wake up until the sun rose the next morning.
A few days ago, when he was tense, he was able to hold on. As soon as he relaxed, he felt a bit weak. Fortunately, they had a rest day today.
In order to save money, Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng both slept on the boat and usually cooked some rice and kelp for their meals. But today, they were free after earning money, so they didn’t have to treat themselves poorly.
Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng made a pot of rice and bought some pork and fried vegetables. They comfortably ate two bowls each.
“Watch over the boat. I’ll go in the city.” After eating, Jiang Zhen said that to Wang Haisheng.
There was a lot of salted fish and kelp on their ship that they hadn’t sold yet. They were going to take it to Hecheng county town, so the boat had to be watched over.
Wang Haisheng agreed, and Jiang Zhen went ashore to wander around the city.
This city was bigger than Hecheng, but he didn’t know by how much. It’s probably because it’s located in the south of the Yangtze River, that’s why there are no tall and towering city walls, and the business seemed very prosperous.
Jiang Zhen had inquired about the prices of various commodities in Hecheng before. When he arrived here, he had also inquired about the prices in Fucheng City. When he returned to Hecheng, he could not go back with an empty boat. He should bring some goods back.
Some things in Fucheng were more expensive than in Hecheng, and some things were cheaper than in Hecheng. For example, the prices of oil and some beautiful fabrics here were much lower than in Hecheng.
The most profitable thing these days were definitely luxury goods. However, Jiang Zhen simply did not have the capital to buy such goods, so he planned to buy those daily necessities that were cheaper than those in Hecheng and take them back with him.
What Jiang Zhen wanted most was oil, but at present, the oil pressing workshop was not responsible for preparing oil barrels for those who came to buy oil. For a while, he couldn’t get any oil barrels, so he gave up on buying oil for the moment and went to a dyeing workshop to buy 30 silver worth of fabrics.
After buying some oil paper, he wrapped all the fabrics carefully and put them on a shelf in the fishing boat. Jiang Zhen breathed a sigh of relief. The day was almost over.
Early the next morning, Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng set off for Hecheng, and it was already dark by the time they arrived in Hecheng.
Since it was getting dark, Jiang Zhen did not rush back to Hexi Village but slept on the boat all night. Early the next morning, he took the fabrics to the cloth shop in the county town.
There were two cloth shops in Hecheng, one was a bit smaller, and the other one was a bit larger. These two cloth shops buy cloth themselves, dyeing it in their own stores before selling it. They also sell ordinary cloth with a few simple colors.
However, they occasionally went out to buy goods, so when Jiang Zhen brought cloth to their doors, they accepted it, but there was not much profit made. Thirty silver worth of fabrics was sold for thirty-two silver and soon changed hands.
During this half-month’s trip, Jiang Zhen earned a total of 22 silver. If other people knew about this, they would be jealous to death. After all, Jiang Chengxiang’s previous job earned him two silver a month. Zhao Jinge worked a full year but only earned 3 or 4 silver.
But in fact, it was not much, and the purchasing power was equivalent to 20,000 yuan in the future.
After packing the silver, Jiang Zhen went to buy five kilos of pork before going back to Hexi.
It was noon when Jiang Zhen arrived in Hexi. In the morning, he spent only two coppers for two bowls of porridge at the dock. Right then, he was hungry and homesick.
Together with Wang Haisheng, he picked up the rest of the kelp and the salted fish. When Jiang Zhen went to the village, he was thinking about Zhao Jinge. Although he was very hungry, he made a special detour to Zhao Dahu’s house. As a result, Zhao Jinge who always worked in the field at this time, was not here.
Jiang Zhen went home a bit frustrated. He planned to cook a meal for Zhao Jinge and then go out to find him. But he didn’t expect to see Zhao Jinge near his house.
He didn’t know why there were so many people gathered around the Zhao family. There was also a short man talking to Zhao Jinge. But seeing that this man actually grabbed Zhao Jinge’s hand, Jiang Zhen immediately got angry.
How dare someone flirt with his man! It was time to kill!
Jiang Zhen was already very unhappy, when he happened to hear someone say, “Jinge, Li Zugen is sincere. You should marry him!”
In a moment, the flames in Jiang Zhen’s heart suddenly turned into a sea of fire. In order to do business in the past half a month, he had been holding down his temper, but now he couldn’t hold it any longer. Jiang Zhen threw down the load he was carrying and rushed over with a bamboo pole.
Zhao Jinge was actually very angry at that moment.
He had been working well at Zhao Dahu’s family that day, but unexpectedly, in the middle of his work, a thin man came with his four children. The man approached him, shouting, “Jinge!” and his four children came over and called him, “Mother!”
Hearing such calls, Zhao Jinge’s face suddenly turned black. At the same time, he recognized the man. Who was it if not Li Zugen?
Although Jiang Zhen sometimes looked shy, his whole body was very robust. But that man was different. He was thin and small, obviously a little creepy.
The most important thing was that when Jiang Zhen looked at him, his eyes were full of him. He could see him blushing and hear his heart beating, but this person was the opposite. Zhao Jinge looked at this man’s evasive eyes and then at the four children who followed him. At that moment, he was really eager to learn from Jiang Zhen how to beat people up.
It was just that, although he was pretty strong, he was still a ger. When he was a child, he was detained at home by Zhao Liu, so he had no experience in fighting with the other children his age. Later, when he grew up, he wouldn’t start a fight with others either, so he felt helpless now. And what’s more, he was still followed by four children!
It took Zhao Jinge some time to tear the four children off himself. Amid their cries, he was scolding Li Zugen, asking him to leave. However, Li Zugen refused to leave and continued pestering Zhao Jinge, making it impossible for him to continue working.
Seeing this scene, Zhao Dahu, who came to check the field, asked Zhao Jinge to go home to solve this matter. As a result, when Zhao Jinge went home, Li Zugen followed him with his children calling him “mother” and saying that they wanted to live in the Zhaos’ house.
He was going to rely on the Zhao family!
Zhao Fugui’s workplace was a bit far away, so he couldn’t come back for a while. In the meantime the villagers advised him to marry Li Zugen . . . Zhao Jinge clenched his fists, already wanting to punch Li Zugen. He didn’t expect to see a dusty Jiang Zhen at this moment.
Edited by : Faro