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After lunch, Zhao Liniang suddenly remembered that she had a daughter-in-law now. She enacted her role as the mother-in-law and instructed Ji Yan to clean the house and do this and that. They had their wedding yesterday. Although they were a farming family, they didn’t have many relatives. A few tables were set up in the hall, and the neighbors and villagers were invited to make it lively. The borrowed tables, chairs, and benches were piled in the corner. They had to be wiped clean and returned later.
Since it was a wedding banquet, the ground was a mess. Zhao Liniang swiped the broom to clean up the wreckage. Ji Yan wiped the table and chairs with a rag. The two were busy working nonstop. Lin Lixuan couldn’t watch any longer and came to help but was rushed back into the room by Zhao Liniang. “Your health isn’t good. You should go lie on the bed. Your mother and Ger Yan will take care of things here. You don’t have to worry about it.”
Lin Lixuan couldn’t persuade her and obediently went back to his room. He really did need to rest. The memories of two people were still mixed together, and random images would pop up every now and then. Some were his memories from modern times, and some were the Xiucai’s previous memories. If it weren’t for his good mental strength, he would have gone crazy from the constant back and forth.
After dozing for a bit, Lin Lixuan sat up. His body was stiff and numb. He secretly thought that the Xiucai’s body really wasn’t good. It couldn’t even compare to a certain skinny Shuang’er’s body. His finger pressed his temples, and after a while, his thoughts were clearer. He had regained a body. Although he hadn’t occupied this body voluntarily, he had indeed benefited from this matter. Since he was now using the body, he should be responsible.
From what he saw and heard today, he could see that this family was very poor, so poor that he couldn’t even imagine. He had to think of a way to make his family rich. Lin Lixuan didn’t want to abuse his stomach again with the dishes from today.
However, how could he make money?
He was in ancient times now! Technology was backwards and the roads were not smooth. It took months to send a letter. If it were still modern times, he had all sorts of ways to earn money. Now that he was a poor Xiucai who couldn’t bear any burdens. He also didn’t have any start-up capital. In the business world, one needed to spend money to make money. If he didn’t have any capital, how could he make money?
Moreover, in this era, if you wanted to make your business bigger, you had to rely on certain powers. For this life, Lin Lixuan didn’t want to act subservant and bow down to others, so it was better to be an honest and leisure little landlord. To Lin Lixuan, it wasn’t that he didn’t have a way to make money. It was just that in this closed-minded society, he couldn’t use methods that were too out of the ordinary. He didn’t want to be caught and burned to death like a monster. If one didn’t have enough power or influence and exposed too much, they would attract trouble and jealousy.
Lin Lixuan lay in bed and thought about it over and over. He tossed and turned as he planned.
He was still dizzy. He had an idea, but how was he going to make his first pot of gold?
It had to be in line with his current identity and it couldn’t be too out of the ordinary.
He was now a poor Xiucai living in a poor village. The cultural level of ancient times was generally low. He was the only Xiucai in the entire village. The only advantage left to him by this body’s memory was the ability to read and write. With his memory, Lin Lixuan would not become illiterate.
His gaze flicked to the old white paper and inkstone and brush piled on the table. As someone who can read and a scholar, all the stationary and pens were available. Even after the original owner became a fool later on, his writing tools still remained. Mother and Father Lin loved their son very much. They were looking forward to him becoming the top scholar and a huge official. They did their best to provide the best food, clothes, and study supplies to him.
Although the paper used by Lin Lixuan wasn’t the best, it wasn’t something that ordinary farmers could afford. Even if they could afford it, they wouldn’t buy this kind of paper for the younger generation to squander. Fortunately, the quality of the paper was passable. It could still be written on without the ink bleeding.
Lin Lixuan’s eyes rolled. He finally thought of a good way to make money for now.
He could write stories to make money.
In his previous life, Lin Lixuan wasn’t a writer. He didn’t know how to write stories, but in this kind of ancient era where talented and exceptional people could only write trite poetry, he could draw from other’s experiences. Digging up a few random stories from the vast collections from the modern era was enough to deceive the eye. He had a highly retentive memory. Although he didn’t have photographic memory, after reading something once or twice, he could just about remember it all. Lin Lixuan picked up the brush, considered the current era he was in, and made a plan in his heart.
Lin Lixuan was proficient in calligraphy during the modern times. Writing with a brush wasn’t a problem for him. He grinded the ink and wrote the first word. He couldn’t help but frown. The brush in his hand really was of a poor quality. It was sparse and uneven, but he had to use it.
Ji Yan carried the wooden basin and brought it to a stream in the middle of the village to wash clothes. The stream spanned the entire village, dividing it in half. The villagers all came here to wash clothes and other things. Ji Yan came late, so most of the village women had already done their laundry and went home. He and another Shuang’er were in front of the large stone steps.
Before he got married, he would also often come here to wash clothes.
He lowered his head and washed the clothes. His thoughts were at a loss. Beside him, the twenty something year old Shuang’er stared at him, wanting to say something but paused. A light flashed in his eyes.
Liu Tiao’Er was the same as Ji Yan, a Shuang’er from Jade Creek Village. He also grew up with Ji Yan, but their relationship wasn’t close. When Ji Yan came up just now, he’d casually said hello. Ji Yan married Lin Lixuan yesterday. Everyone in the village knew that he’d married a fool. Liu Tiao’Er rolled his eyes and pretended to comfort him by saying, “Sigh…the life of us Shuang’ers is very pitiful. Auntie Ji usually dotes on you so much, but how can she be so ruthless…”
“Be so ruthless and marry you off to a fool…”
He hated Ji Yan since he was a child. A few days ago, he heard Ji Yan was going to marry Lin Lixuan, and he’d smiled until his face bloomed. Speaking of which, Ji Yan was one of the prettiest Shuang’ers in the village, but what was the result? What was the use of being good looking? He was good looking, but in the end, he still married a fool. He wasn’t as good as him (LTE). Although his husband’s family was poor, the important fact was that he was healthy. He wasn’t sick or disabled. He wasn’t willing to marry a fool.
Hearing his words, Ji Yan froze. He came back to his senses and blurted out a denial, “He’s not a fool.”
Liu Tiao’Er looked at him like he was looking at a fool. “It can’t be that you’re possessed, right?” Who in the village didn’t know that the Lin family’s Xiucai jumped into a river to his death because of a woman from a neighboring village. When he was saved, he’d become like a three year old child. Last month, Liu Tiao’Er even saw some of the kids in the village using a wooden stick to play with him.
Could someone become a fool after staying together with a fool? Zhao Liniang used to shout from time to time that her son was good, that he wasn’t a fool. At first, some of the villagers believed her but later saw Lin Lixuan acting like that. He treated this matter as if he was watching a play.
Ji Yan thought of the man he saw this morning. He had an elegant and handsome face. His eyes were tired but full of light. They were as sharp as a knife. When he thought of Lin Lixuan, his face became dyed with crimson. Liu Tiao’Er thought he was ashamed. He finished washing his clothes and picked up his wooden basin. Liu Tiao’Er, who was from the winning family, gave Ji Yan a “pitying” gaze before walking away.
Dinner was almost the same as lunch, although it was a bit better. Ji Yan cooked. Zhao Liniang’s craftsmanship wasn’t as good as Ji Yan’s. The originally dry brown rice and plain boiled vegetables tasted much better. Zhao Liniang boasted in her heart that she had good intuition by choosing Ji Yan as her daughter-in-law. This child was blessed. Look, as soon as he married in, her son’s illness was cured. His cooking skills were also excellent.
Even though to Zhao Liniang and Ji Yan, this meal was already good enough, to Lin Lixuan, who had eaten delicacies from all over the world in the modern era, it was no different from pig food. He mechanically chewed the food and couldn’t taste anything delicious.
Ji Yan picked up a piece of cabbage. This was the last piece. He couldn’t eat anymore…
Ji Yan was thin, but the amount of food he ate wasn’t small. Perhaps it was because he’d often gone hungry, but his body had no concept of being full. As long as there was food, he could continue eating.
However, he had already eaten two people’s worth of food… Ji Yan was embarrassed. Zhao Liniang and Lin Lixuan combined didn’t eat as much as him… His black eyes glanced timidly at the two people beside him and saw that Zhao Liniang didn’t find fault or dislike him. He was finally at ease.
He’d cooked a lot too… He couldn’t do this again in the future. Ji Yan warned himself in his heart.
“You didn’t eat your fill?” Lin Lixuan asked. His bowl still had some white rice, but he didn’t really have an appetite, so he couldn’t eat it. Seeing Ji Yan pick up the brown rice grains in his bowl, he couldn’t be at ease.
Lin Lixuan didn’t think Ji Yan ate too much. He considered Ji Yan a youth who was still growing. He should eat more to grow.
Ji Yan acted as if he’d heard something terrifying and madly shook his head. “No, I’m already full…”
Lin Lixuan wanted to push his own rice to him, but before he could move, Ji Yan hurriedly grabbed his bowl and chopsticks and ran off. “I…I’ll go do the dishes.”
Lin Lixuan shook his head. He sighed in his heart. It wasn’t unusual for him to feel sorry for such an obedient child.
Ji Yan pushed open the door and saw Lin Lixuan sitting upright in front of a broken square table. His back was straight as he held a half a foot long brush in his hand. He was writing something on the paper. The air was filled with a thick and slightly fishy smell of ink. Lin Lixuan pulled back the brush and lifted his head to look at Ji Yan at the door. He beckoned him with a smile. “Come here.”
Ji Yan walked over cautiously. Lin Lixuan took out an egg from a bamboo basket, took the youth’s hand, and wanted to place the egg in his hand. “There’s one boiled egg left. It’s for you.”
Ji Yan wanted to withdraw his hand, but his wrist was grabbed by Lin Lixuan. He didn’t dare push too hard. He shook his head and stepped back as he said, “Mother cooked this for you to nourish your body. I don’t want it. I’m already full. I’m not hungry.”
“Eat it. I already ate one. This one’s for you.”