BLL Chapter 10 The Bookstore

If you aren’t reading on then these translations were stolen!

Huang Yuan was a tall and thin poor scholar with an ordinary appearance. He had average learning skills and still hadn’t passed the county level imperial exam. Now, he couldn’t afford to go to school and couldn’t sell books, so he could only set up a small stall by the stone bridge to sell characters to make a living. In fact, it couldn’t be said that he was selling characters. His shabby characters couldn’t sell at all. His actual business was writing letters, IOUs, and other documents on behalf of others. Fortunately, there weren’t many literate people in the middle and lower classes. He, a poor scholar with poor learning abilities, could still rely on this to make a living.

In such an embarrassing situation, if he had encountered one of his past excellent classmates with a limitless future, he wouldn’t dare to have called out to them. However…Lin Lixuan was different. He heard about his situation in the past couple years. Seeing Lin Lixuan here today, he was surprised and called out to him before he knew it…

Moreover, looking at his current appearance, it seemed he wasn’t doing well either. In the face of a poor scholar like him, Huang Yuan had the confidence to communicate with him.

Huang Yuan was very curious. He carefully looked Lin Lixuan up and down and wondered what exactly happened to him in these past couple years. However, it wasn’t easy to ask about other’s private affairs, so he could only ask indirectly. ” Lin-ge, where are you going?”

Lin Lixuan said casually, “Songyun Bookstore.”

“Are you going to buy books?” Huang Yuan clapped his hands in realization. Then a question rose in his heart: “If you’re going to the bookstore, why are you taking this road there?” Ordinary scholars like them would usually walk on East Street to go to the bookstore. Why would they take this stone bridge there? Did he go the roundabout tway for no reason?

Lin Lixuan wasn’t going to buy books, but he didn’t want to explain. He pointed in the direction he came from. “I came from over there. It’s been a while since I came to the county town, so I shopped around.”

“I see.” Huang Yuan nodded, then thought about it and shook his head. “But the county town hasn’t changed. It’s the same as a few years ago.”

Huang Yuan wanted to chat with Lin Lixuan a bit more, but who knew— “If there’s time, we can… Sigh, Auntie Yao is coming. I promised to write a letter for her to her son. Let’s end our chat here. You should go buy your books. ” After he finished speaking, he flew back to his stall, and sure enough, a woman in a green dress was waiting for him.

It didn’t matter how much he wanted to gossip, it couldn’t delay him earning money.

Songyun Bookstore was the largest bookstore in the county town. It was famous in All Water County. The books in the bookstore were all-inclusive. From scriptures and historical books to the Confucian six arts and miscellaneous books. It could be said that they had a bit of everything.  Teachers and students could get everything they needed here. However, compared to a modern bookstore, it was insignificant in comparison.

The owner of the bookstore was said to have a profound background. He used to be an official, and after resigning, lived in seclusion in this small county town and sold books at the bookstore to benefit the scholars.

Songyun Bookstore not only sold books but also made books. It was precisely because of this that Lin Lixuan considered writing novels to make money.

Lin Lixuan took out a few pages of his manuscript from his sleeve pocket. The content of the manuscript was carefully selected and revised. He chose the most interesting paragraph and copied it neatly on the white paper. He also stopped the manuscript at the most exciting part of the story. The suspense was big, and the plot intriguing. After someone read it, they couldn’t help but want to continue.

The bookstore was located at the intersection of East Street. It was in an extremely conspicuous place. Lin Lixuan raised his gaze, and he could see the red lacquer signboard that read “Songyun Bookstore” on it. The words on the signboard were bold and imposing. It must have been written by a calligrapher. The store wasn’t large, and from a distance, one could see the bookshelves lined with the official reports bound with yellow thread.

Lin Lixuan walked into the bookstore and immediately smelled the unique fragrance of ink. He looked around. There were no other guests in the bookstore beside him. There was only a shop assistant sitting on a stool by the door who had fallen asleep. When he saw him, he was a bit refreshed and ready to greet the guest.

A smile appeared on the shop assistant’s face. “Dear guest, what kind of books are you looking for?”

“Do you accept manuscripts here?” Lin Lixuan raised his gaze and asked.

Hearing this, the shop assistant understood that he wasn’t here to buy books. The smile on his face immediately disappeared. He turned out to be a poor scholar who came to sell manuscripts. Yees, seeing his appearance like this, he didn’t look like a big customer. It was pointless. The shop assistant didn’t pay much attention to him and pointed to a place in the corner. “Put the manuscript over there. The boss will read it when he comes back.”

The shop assistant couldn’t read. He didn’t care about the scholars who wrote books. All he cared about was how much money he could earn a day. If he could sell one more book, his salary would be higher. What did anything else have to do with him? If someone from a rich family sent over a person wanting to print a few family educational books and the likes, he would happily receive them. People like Lin Lixuan, who only came to earn money from manuscripts, had nothing to do with him.

Coming out of the bookstore, Lin Lixuan walked around again. He memorized the terrain and roads in the county town. When he returned to the East Market entrance, he saw a beautiful youth standing on the side carrying two bamboo baskets waiting for him. The youth looked left and right and didn’t see Lin Lixuan. He became more and more nervous. When he finally saw Lin Lixuan’s figure walking toward him, his eyes lit up. He waved at Lin Lixuan as he let out a sigh of relief.

A while later, Lin Lixuan walked up to the youth. “I made you wait.”

Ger Yan was relieved as soon as he saw Lin Lixuan. He started to feel regret after he sold the vegetables. He should have gone with Lin-dage. Lin Lixuan had just recovered, and Zhao Liniang told him to take good care of him…If Lin Lixuan had gotten lost, how would he have explained it to Zhao Liniang?

Ger Yan said, “Lin-dage, it’s good you’re back. I was scared…”

Lin Lixuan smiled at him. “Scared that I wouldn’t be able to find my way back? Don’t worry, I’m not a fool anymore.”

“Did you sell all the vegetables?”

Ger Yan nodded. Besides the ones that didn’t look good and nobody wanted, everything else sold out. The youth tilted his head down and handed the string of copper coins to Lin Lixuan. There were a total of 93 wen. This was the money earned from selling vegetables. He’d carefully counted it many times already. While he was waiting for Lin Lixuan, he had nothing to do, so he held the string of copper coins and played with them with his thumb like Buddhist monks did with beads.

“You don’t have to give them to me. You hold onto it.” Seeing the youth hand him the copper coins like he was presenting an offering, Lin Lixuan couldn’t help but smile. He then handed the oiled paper bag to the youth.

Ger Yan asked, “What is this?” The oil paper was hot, and a strong aroma wafted from it. Ger Yan’s gluttonous stomach was instantly aroused. He swallowed his saliva vigorously.

“It’s almost noon. You must be hungry, right? I bought four buns. I’ll eat two and you eat two. I already ate mine. You should eat the last two while they’re still hot.” In fact, Lin Lixuan had only bought three buns. He ate one. He knew the youth had a big appetite and thought it would take two buns to fill him up. He was worried the youth wouldn’t eat them by himself, so he could only say that he’d already eaten two.

It was meat buns… “You don’t need to waste money on this.” The youth frowned, a bit distressed. Meat buns cost five wen. Four of them was 20 wen. After buying the buns, the money they earned from selling vegetables shrunk a lot… Lin-dage didn’t know how expensive firewood and rice was. What should he do about this wastefulness…

Ger Yan was a little distressed as he thought about it.

“Why do you have such a bad expression? Hurry and eat. It won’t taste good once it’s cold.” Lin Lixuan pushed the buns over. Since coming here, he hadn’t tasted fresh meat. He had long been greedy for meat just like the other villagers from Jade Creek Village. He couldn’t afford the fresh meat from the pork shop, so he could only buy a few meat buns to satisfy his greed.

The owner of the bun shop was very sincere. The skin of the bun was thick and there was a lot of meat. The hot bun was juicy when torn open, and the aroma was very attractive. Ger Yan almost couldn’t resist. “It’s better if I don’t eat it. It’s enough to eat the brown rice for him. Let’s take the buns back for Mother.”

What a filial good child…

“Don’t worry and eat it. I bought pastries for Mother. Besides, the buns won’t taste good anymore when it gets cold.”

The youth frowned as if he was eating a cold steamed bun that was as hard as a rock. He ate the buns one bite at a time. His anxious and distressed appearance made Lin Lixuan feel that he was forcing the youth to eat poison.

The youth whispered, “In the future…can you not spend money so carelessly…”

The sweet and soft bun skin was put in his mouth. The meat filling was tender and juicy… However, the youth didn’t have any feelings toward it. How was this the act of eating buns… He was basically eating copper coins!

Whenever he chewed, he could hear the crisp sound of copper coins in between his teeth…

The youth frowned, even more distressed now.

Was this carelessly spending money? Lin Lixuan was amused by Ger Yan’s distressed appearance.

“Alright, hurry and eat. We’ll go home after you finish.”

It was already past noon when they returned to Jade Creek Village. To Lin Lixuan, this trip was very fruitful. He got a general understanding of the county town, and he had a clear understanding of the prices in this world. Finally, the most important thing to him was that after this trip to the county town,Zhao Liniang seemed to think that he’d completely recovered and stopped forcing him to stay home.

Lin Lixuan wasn’t a freeloader. Since arriving at the Lin residence, he never acted like a rich master from his previous life. Since he stole this body, he should fill his role and live his identity honestly. He was unable to learn farming and the likes currently. His physical strength couldn’t support him. However, he could learn how to water the plants, feed the chickens, and hoe the vegetable garden.

Lin Lixuan squatted in front of the vegetable garden by the front door and carefully pulled out the weeds. If he saw an insect, he would also catch the insects with his hands. This was the bad part of ancient times. Farming was very troublesome. There was no such thing as insecticide or pesticides. The only good thing was that it was all natural and pollution free.

He pulled out a tough weed and tossed it to the side. When he raised his gaze, he saw a small and skinny figure by the doorway.

I hope there’s some face-slapping from the shop assistant xD

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