BLL Chapter 18 Donkey

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

Lin Lixuan carefully looked at the honest looking scholar who’d stopped him up and down. Compared with Huang Yuan, that sloppy scholar, this person looked like a true academy student born in ancient times. However…his physique was a bit…too robust.

It was fine to be robust—at least he didn’t look like a liar.

“I almost forgot to mention, my surname is Chu. My name is Zihang. I don’t have a courtesy name1 yet, and I live in the southwest alley,” the square-faced, robust scholar said happily.

Since the other party wasn’t a scammer—besides, he didn’t have anything for someone to deceive him—Lin Lixuan introduced himself with a smile, “Lin Lixuan, from Jade Creek Village. Were you asking about the manuscript I sent over previously? The first volume is basically finished.”

He was someone who had a bit of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Even if he knew the manuscript couldn’t make a lot of money, he didn’t give up on the worthless task. He would still write occasionally and read it to Ger Yan when they were free to lighten his mood.

“That’s good. I wonder if you’re free to come with me to Mr. Shen’s house…Mr. Shen is the owner of our Songyun Bookstore. Our boss and Mrs. Shen really like your novel.”

They thought this route was a dead end, but in their darkest time, a branch was offered.

This was basically like someone sending him money in his sleep. There was no harm in going with him. The small donkey or small buffalo could wait.

Lin Lixuan followed Chu Zihang to the Shen residence. On the way, he heard the other party say what happened at the Songyun Bookstore after he left. It seemed this man had helped him a lot with this matter…Lin Lixuan was 70 percent surprised and 30 percent shocked as he looked at the honest scholar in front of him. He felt like a red collar2 suddenly appeared on his neck, shining brightly and complimenting his honest smile.

Lin Lixuan listened to the other party with a smile and replied with a few words from time to time. Chu Zihang’s impression of him became even better.

He asked Chu Zihang about Boss Shen. According to the original memories, there was a vague impression of the owner of the shop. It was said that he was once an official. He later resigned for some reason and returned to his hometown and opened a bookstore. The people of All Water County respected him greatly.

Chu Zihang heard him ask about Shen Changwen. He went a little out of control as he talked about his benefactor. He said how Shen Changwen was a good person, who was kind and charitable. He also said Mr. Shen loved talents and would love him (LLX) once they met.

Listening to the other person’s praises, Lin Lixuan slowly painted an image of a smiling Buddha in his mind.

Lin Lixuan originally thought Boss Shen would be a rich boss with a big body and a rich wife.

Who knew that when Lin Lixuan saw Shen Changwen, the legendary owner of the Songyun Bookstore, he looked like a middle-aged man with an elegant figure and casual dress. He quietly pressed down his previous thoughts.

After a short greeting, he thought the other party would bring up his manuscript. Before he came, he had the idea of selling this manuscript to earn some money, but who knew Mr. Shen didn’t mention this matter and only asked for his writing.

Was his calligraphy that good?

The corner of Lin Lixuan’s mouth twitched. He always thought his body would be covered in the smell of golden coins, he never thought he had the talent to become a literary artist…

“You write very well. How long have you been practicing calligraphy?”

Lin Lixuan spouted nonsense. “Ten years.” Who the heck knew how long this body had been practicing calligraphy. The original host’s handwriting wasn’t good. It was the same level as Huang Yuan’s.

“There is a lot of strength in your characters.” Shen Changwen smiled and bowed his head.

He looked very handsome when he smiled, looking like a man who was neither arrogant nor humble. His eyes were full of appreciation just like Chu Zihang had explained earlier. He was carefully looking over Lin Lixuan’s calligraphy. Although the other party’s characters weren’t to everyone’s taste, it had a unique style. He’d never seen this kind of extraordinary calligraphy before. Had he created this himself.

If he had created it himself, then this person really was…extraordinary.

Shen Changwen asked Lin Lixuan to help him make a copy of the Lankavatara sutra. He liked Lin Lixuan’s writing a lot and wanted to have one of his handwritten copies of this book for his collection. Lin Lixuan agreed. Shen Changwen said there would be monetary compensation. Lin Lixuan secretly thought this was how the other party supported poor scholars.

After saying this, he finally mentioned his League of Gods that had been adapted from Investiture of the Gods. “I don’t know how you came up with this strange and curious tale with so many dogs, demons, and monsters. It’s really amazing.”

The creativity of the ancient Chinese people was infinite. Their souls were free. Lin Lixuan hooked up. “I had a long dream, and when I woke, I remembered his unpredictable story.”

Chu Zihang couldn’t help but add from the side, “What happened after. Did that Daji once again…”

“If Brother Chu likes it that much, you should wait for me to bring the manuscript over later. Wouldn’t it be boring if I told you now…”

“Zihang, you’re being too impatient…” Shen Changwen smiled. “However, my wife is also curious about the development of the story.”

“I’m happy to know that you guys are curious,” Lin Lixuan snickered in his heart. He was like a hunter watching his prey fall in the trap he’d set.

Lin Lixuan signed a contract with Songyun Bookstore. He would provide the manuscript and receive a deposit of three taels. He sighed. Sure enough, he wouldn’t be able to make a lot of money in ancient times. He could only slowly earn money. After obtaining the fresh out of the oven three taels—it was a genuine three taels, not copper coins.

He tossed the money in his hand in the air like it was a stone. He suddenly had an embarrassing thought, “Should he learn from the locals and bite the money to check its hardness?”

Forget it.

Lin Lixuan secretly tossed out his stupid idea. He suddenly felt his profiteer attitude grow.

However, this was the first time he earned silver. It was quite novel. Lin Lixuan emptied his thoughts and suddenly remembered Jing Yong’s Legend of the Condor Heroes when Guo Jing invited Huang Rong to a meal and spent 20 taels of silver. He looked at the three taels in his hand and lamented that inflation was everywhere.

When he arrived at the place where livestock was sold, the smell was really unbearable. Lin Lixuan politely declined the “most excellent” big donkeys and calves. He was careful as he walked, lest he stepped on something he shouldn’t step on.

After picking and choosing for a long time, Lin Lixuan finally chose a little donkey that was led out by a one-armed old man. Lin Lixuan didn’t know how to choose animals, so his requirement was that they were clean, tidy, and beautiful. This donkey was half a person tall. His eyes were clear, and his coat smooth. He looked like he’d been carefully cared for by the owner and was washed recently. He looked spirited and probably didn’t have any illnesses.

“Mister, how much is this donkey?:

“Four taels of silver. Fixed price.” The old man slightly raised his lids.

Priced price? He didn’t want to bargain in the first place. “Mister, I want him.’

The old man was a bit surprised. He didn’t expect the other party to agree so easily. He had already met several people today who’d tried to bargain. This scholar-like person was very refreshing.

The old man handed the rope tied around the donkey’s head to Lin Lixuan. He accepted the money with one hand, then used his hand to hand over the donkey. The old man looked at the radiant little donkey, and a trace of reluctance flashed in his eyes. His rough hands touched the donkey’s mane. He fed it half a radish, then muttered, “Little donkey, little donkey, you’ll belong to someone else in the future.”

Seeing this, Lin Lixuan asked why this mister was selling his donkey. He replied saying his son needed money to marry a wife, so his wife had him sell the donkey. He was unwilling. He was very attached to this donkey…A little donkey typically cost around three taels of silver. His head wasn’t very good. He thought that if he insisted on four taels of silver, then he wouldn’t be able to sell him. Who knew, he’d encounter Lin Lixuan who would happily buy him…

The old man sighed. It was fate.

Although he was very sympathetic to the old man, he still had to take the donkey away. Lin Lixuan rubbed the little donkey’s ears, and the donkey also meekly rubbed his head on his hand.

After buying the donkey, he still needed to buy a cart.

Lin Lixuan followed the old man’s example and touched the donkey’s mane. He remembered how excited Ger Yan was when he saw the donkey at the place where they sold grindstones. When he came home and saw him later, who knew how happy he would be.

Ger Yan was currently washing clothes in a wooden basin by the stream. He was about to head back when he was called over by Li Yue’e, “Ger Yan.”

Li Yue’e pushed back her stray hair behind her ears and dragged herself to her child’s side. “Ger Yan.”

“Mother?” Ger Yan was a bit surprised. He didn’t know why his mother was looking for him.

Li Yue’e pulled him to the side under a tree. She first asked how he was doing at the Lin residence.

Ger Yan smiled shyly. “Very good, Mother.”

Li Yue’e rebuked him. “You know how to answer with ‘very good’.”

Ger Yan smiled helplessly.

She pulled her son to her side and looked Ger Yan all over. His clothes weren’t new or old. They were much cleaner and more beautiful than the ones he had in the Ji family. He wasn’t as thin as before either. His pale lips were now bloody red, and his face was ruddy as well. If she hadn’t watched Ger Yan grow up, she might not have recognized her own Shuang’er from a distance.

During this time, there was a rumor in the village, saying that her Ger Yan had dumb luck. He wasn’t worthy of Xiucai Lin at all, and he would be chased away soon. Third Ji’s little daughter, Ji Ru, also made some cynical remarks inside the Ji residence… According to her (LYE), her Ger Yan was very beautiful. Why wouldn’t he be worthy of Xiucai Lin?

Table of Contents

  1. Name given to men when they come of age ↩︎
  2. I believe he means the people during the China Cultural Revolution who wore red collars. They were supposed to kind and helpful to others. ↩︎

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