Before, he didn’t think much about it. He just wanted it to be strong and durable, so he bought some coarse cloth for Zhao Jinge. But later, when he thought about it . . . If they got married and didn’t have any better clothes to wear, it would wrong Zhao Jinge.
Jiang Zhen had always been a person who, after making his decision, would act on it immediately. After making such a decision, he immediately found Zhao Fugui and his wife, and told them that he wanted to go and sell some more seafood.
“You are about to get married . . .” Zhao Liu was a bit hesitant. Before, when Jiang Zhen left on a long travel, she didn’t care, but now she couldn’t help worrying. It was so dangerous out there! In the past, some people in their village went far away, but never came back.
“There is still a month until then. And I am going to do business and make money in the future. Even if I don’t go this time, I will go out in a few days,” Jiang Zhen said.
Zhao Liu looked at Jiang Zhen and was worried that Jiang Zhen was upset because she and Zhao Fugui didn’t let him meet Zhao Jinge. So he decided to say it out.
“Jiang Zhen, these days . . .”
“It was my fault before. I should have behaved much better,” Jiang Zhen apologized. It was not proper for him to climb in through the window. If it wasn’t Zhao Fugui and his wife, who saw him, he was afraid that Zhao Jinge would suffer from the gossip.
Zhao Liu took a look at Jiang Zhen and said, “Go and talk to Jinge.” She didn’t want to stop Jiang Zhen from getting closer to Zhao Jinge, but they weren’t married yet . . .
Jiang Zhen went to see Zhao Jinge and told him that he was leaving for a period of time. Then the next day, he left with Wang Haisheng.
Wang Haisheng followed Jiang Zhen and had no salary for the time being, but his wife and children had a house to live in and food to eat, so he was already very satisfied. Although his boat had become Jiang Zhen’s, his family’s life was much better now than before.
Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng went to the seaside fishing village again to purchase goods. They bought the same goods like last time, but they didn’t buy as much kelp as last time. At the same time, he and Wang Haisheng went to the seaside to pick up 500 kilos of clams.
Facts proved that their decision was very correct, because as soon as they arrived in Fucheng, the owner of a restaurant came to them and bought all 500 kilos of clams for two silver per hundred kilos.
Live seafood was rarely seen in Fucheng. Last time, Jiang Zhen came here with clams and made people realize that this kind of food was similar to mussels but much smaller. The outer shells were also very beautiful. This way, a restaurant found a business opportunity and took the initiative to buy clams.
Clams were the first to be sold out. Jiang Zhen stayed in Fucheng for three or four days selling some of the seafood from the boat, and bought various kinds of goods from Fucheng to load on his boat. In addition, he went to a clothing store to buy cloth, and found a skilled tailor to make clothes according to his and Zhao Jinge’s sizes. As for Zhao Jinge’s size, how did he know it? For several days, he had cuddled a lot with Zhao Jinge, so it would have been strange, if he didn’t know Zhao Jinge’s size!
After all that, Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng left the city.
In Fucheng, some things were more expensive, but other things were much cheaper than in the small towns. For example, things like soy sauce, oil, sugar, and other seasonings were much cheaper than in other county towns because there were special workshops on this side of this city. In the countryside, those goods couldn’t be bought as easily. In these times, not all the people living in the countryside were poor, and in almost every village, there were one or two landlords or wealthy people.
Jiang Zhen took Wang Haisheng to the villages along the river, and sold the goods on the boat. The main customers they aimed at were these rich people and landlords in the villages.
“This is the best fabric from Fucheng!”
“Smell this wine and vinegar! It’s from the best workshop in Fucheng that is hundreds of years old!”
“I still have some seafood here. You can also have a look.”
. . .
Jiang Zhen turned his boat into a small grocery store, because the variety of goods he carried was much larger than those sold in various villages, and he chose goods of good quality. Later, when he met a county magistrate who had resigned and was returning to his hometown, the ex-official made a bulk purchase of his goods.
This county magistrate lived in the countryside and had many servants. He also had silver on his hands, so it was inconvenient for him to go out and buy things. Now that someone brought merchandise to his door, he didn’t care, if they were a bit more expensive.
It had been more than ten days since they left on this trip. Jiang Zhen was very tired, but when he thought that he had earned nearly twenty silver, he became refreshed. After calculating the time, Jiang Zhen didn’t hesitate to travel again, and Wang Haisheng agreed with him very much.
They went back to the fishing village again, but this time, they bought even less salted fish and kelp. They also asked people in the village to pick up clams at a price of one copper penny for two kilos. Finally, they gathered one thousand kilos of clams, which suddenly reduced the number of clams on the beach there.
The clams could be stored for a period of time, and their price was not very expensive. So after bringing the clams to Fucheng, Jiang Zhen soon found a buyer for them, after checking restaurant after restaurant. They finally sold for ten silver.
They also bought a lot of goods in the town. The ones that were easy to sell prevailed, while the quantity of the less popular merchandise was less. Then, like they did the last time, they swung their boat to the villages to trade.
With the experience from the last time, they sold their stock faster and earned even more.
“I didn’t expect the bands to sell so well.” Wang Haisheng arranged the headbands and could not help but click his tongue.
Jiang Zhen had bought some beautiful headbands and some colorful leftover cloth from the clothing shops and the tailors. The price of these things was very low and few people wanted them in the city, but they sold very well in the countryside. One red headband was one copper penny, and one piece of red cloth that was two fingers wide and two palms long was two copper pennies. It was by no means an impressive amount, but the profit was even higher than the profit of selling kelp.
“Women’s business is the best one,” Jiang Zhen said. Most of the women in this village didn’t have the money to make new clothes and buy new jewelry, but they could afford to spend a penny or two on bright colored small stuff to make flowers out of and wear them on their heads.
“Jiang Zhen, can you give me these strips of cloth?” Wang Haisheng asked Jiang Zhen for a few long pieces of cloth.
“Yes,” Jiang Zhen agreed without hesitation.
Wang Haisheng immediately beamed and said, “Jiang Zhen, do you want to leave some for Zhao Jinge? How beautiful these pieces of cloth are?”
“No need.” Jiang Zhen didn’t hesitate to reject Wang Haisheng’s proposal. If he made more money this time, it would be nice to spend some on a silver hairpin for Zhao Jinge, but forget about those bright colored cloth pieces. If Zhao Jinge made them into flowers and wore them on his head . . . He couldn’t imagine it.
This trip earned him a little more than he expected. Jiang Zhen was thinking about what to buy for Zhao Jinge as a gift, when his boat was suddenly hit by something.
Now that it was already dark, Jiang Zhen and Wang Haisheng docked their boat on the river bank in order to rest. When they were hit like that, the oil lamp on the table turned over.
“Who is it?” Jiang Zhen frowned and walked out of the cabin, just to find out that his boat was surrounded by two smaller boats.
There were three people standing on each of the two ships, looking like they had no good intentions. When they saw Jiang Zhen, one of them said, “Hey, you on the ship, hand over your silver and the goods! Otherwise . . .”
This was . . . They had encountered robbers!
Edited by : Faro