Their main shopkeepers, Xu and Zeng were willing to treat Shao Yunan with courtesy and every time they gave money, they were not stingy, so Shao Yunan must also be aware of their interest. Besides, if he can get in touch with him, it would be a blessing for him to do business with the Marquis of Hengyuan. But Wei Hongwen would never have imagined that he would be so wrong. That farmer was much more shrewd than he thought.
Wei Hongwen couldn’t get the tea and wine directly from the Empress, so he could only find a way from Shao Yunan. Wei Xiu was the big shopkeeper in charge of all the business in the province and was the local big boss. Sending Wei Xiu now was also not enough, so Wei Hongwen should personally take this trip.
When deciding to give the tea and wine to Jiang Kangning, Shao Yunan thought that there would definitely be a reaction from the side of Boss Xu. Shopkeeper Xu didn’t look for him for the New Year, so he was afraid that the news had not traveled as fast as he thought, but after the New Year’s celebration, shopkeeper Xu would definitely come. Shopkeeper Xu didn’t even want to let go of the meat bun and skewer business, so how could he let go of such a lucrative tea and wine business?
However, Shao Yunan didn’t feel guilty at all. To put it bluntly, this business was his and he could work with whomever he wanted to. He also had no direct business relationship with Shopkeeper Xu or the big boss behind Shopkeeper Xu. He hadn’t even seen the other person’s face, so why should he ask them to do business with him?
But he knew Jiang Kangning. Shopkeeper Zeng bought the four seasons jade pendants which seemed to cost a lot of money, but in fact they made even higher profit. Jiang Kangning’s kindness to him and Wang Shijing was also real, and now that he recognized Jiang Kangning as his sworn brother, there was no reason for him to turn to another person.
The New Year celebration was all about eating and drinking. Old Man Cen and Madam Cen were getting old, so there was no New Year vigil. But everyone still decided to stay up almost all night. Even Jiang Moxi refused to sleep, much to the surprise of Jiang Kangchen and Jiang Kangning. When the New Year came, Shao Yunan cooked a big pot of cabbage and pork dumplings. The three children should eat dumplings before going to sleep.
On the morning of the first day of the Chinese New Year, it was very quiet in the Wang residence. Wang Shijing slept peacefully with Shao Yunan in his arms, Jiang Kangchen slept relaxedly with his son in his arms, Jiang Kangning slept sweetly with the prospect of the future, while Wang Nizi and Wang Qing slept soundly in their respective beds, perhaps eating some delicious treats in their dreams. However Guo Zimu and Guo Ziyu were already awake.
Last night, Jiang Kangning told Guo Ziyu that he and his brother’s household registration had been transferred to slave status, and the two of them now belonged to him. Today, the two brothers were going to sign the deed of sale with the Wang family and after three years, they will go back to being ordinary citizens again and become villagers of Xiushui Village. Since Yang Tianwei died and Rong Yue was demoted, this really fulfilled ‘Good will be rewarded with good and evil will be rewarded with evil. If it’s still unrewarded, it only means that the time has yet not come!’
But if the two brothers had not met Shao Yunan, how would they have known all of this? Could they have stayed away from that sad place? Guo Zimu cried very sadly. He always believed that the great changes in his family were caused by him. Guo Ziyu kept comforting him. Now that the two brothers have settled down, they had no way to repay Shao Yunan and Wang Shijing for their great kindness and they could only work for Shao Yunan and Wang Shijing with all their heart, and be at their disposal.
After Master Cen and Madam Cen got up, they went to the kitchen to see what they could eat, knowing that everyone must be sleeping. They never expected to see Guo Ziyu and Guo Zimu in the kitchen. Seeing from the two brothers’ eyes that they had obviously cried, Elder Cen’s mind was clear.
After Guo Ziyu and Guo Zimu came over with breakfast and sat down, Elder Cen said, “You two should stay with Yunan at ease. Yunan is a free-spirited person and Wang Shijing doesn’t have too many rules, while their family really needs some sharp people to help them manage the house. After three years, if you want to continue to take the examination, you can come to this old man. Zimu also doesn’t have to hide his face. I can’t say it about other places, but in Yongxiu Province no one would dare to make trouble with you.”
“Thank you, Elder Cen.” Guo Zimu’s eyes reddened again and he lowered his head. Madam Cen said gently, “I’m afraid Yunan and the others won’t be able to get up until late, let’s eat first.” Guo Ziyu and Guo Zimu respectfully served congee to Elder Cen and Madam Cen.
There was no cooking on the first day of the New Year, so they had to eat what was left over from the day before, in order to have a ‘New Year surplus.’ Breakfast was red bean porridge that Shao Yunan had cooked in advance the night before. It had a very unique flavor when served with bread and kimchi.
It was noon when the others woke up. It was still raining, so no one went out and they all stayed in the house. Shao Yunan took out a wooden mahjong board and three wooden dice. He first taught the three children, mainly Wang Qing and Wang Nizi, how to play dice and then let them play by themselves. The money for gambling was the candy they were given before, which was now used for betting.
The adults then played mahjong. At this time there was no such game as mahjong, so Shao Yunan after explaining the rules, directly pulled elder Cen, Jiang Kangning, and Jiang Kangchen to the table, while the others gathered around. Their gambling money was spiced peanuts.
Faced with this novelty, everyone’s interest was very high. Shao Yunan also specially reminded Jiang Kangchen that mahjong is very suitable for making friendships. Game friends who you play with for a long time would naturally become friends. Jiang Kangchen immediately became more serious after hearing this, saying that he must learn mahjong.
A freezing rain was falling outside the house, but the house was full of warmth, especially the voice of Elder Cen which was the loudest. Shao Yunan was stunned. One was a respected academy dean and former fourth-ranked scholar, another one was the county magistrate, the emperor’s favored disciple and genius scholar, so how come both didn’t show any remorse when playing cards!
“Put it down, I want this card!” Shao Yunan hurriedly grabbed the seven piece card Elder Cen had just played. “I don’t want to play this one!” The old man quickly drew it back and looked at his own cards, tangled.
“You’ve already played it and put it down! You can’t go back!”
“No, no, allow me to think again. I haven’t figured it out yet, it doesn’t count.”
Wang Shijing reached out to block Shao Yunan’s cards while Jiang Kangning, who was investigating, calmly retracted his head and said, “What are the rules of this card? Yunan, say it again.”
Jiang Kangchen resisted the desire to peek at his brother’s cards. He also didn’t have time to pay attention to his son when he was thinking about how to play his cards. Guo Ziyu, Guo Zimu, and Madam Cen who were watching, were all laughing. How could these young and old people play mahjong and still cheat?
On the side of the three children, Wang Qing and Wang Nizi wanted to cry, but had no tears left. As they looked at Jiang Moxi who still held the precious mechanical bird in his left hand, while his right one was as skilled as an old man shaking the dice cup.
Bang! The dice cup was lifted, showing off Jiang Moxi’s gains. – a four, – a five, – a six. Jiang Moxi’s expression was still wooden, but his eyes were filled with some shining light.
Nizi counted with her fingers tremblingly on the floor. After four plus five plus six was calculated, she swallowed and picked up her dice cup and dice. Brother Moxi had fifteen points, it was difficult to exceed and she was running out of candies…
Edited by: Jaisland