Book 10 Chapter 36 - Simple Against Simple

The current atmosphere was extremely grave and cold, yet because of Chen Feirong’s words, it no longer seemed extremely grave, instead feeling extremely disrespectful and domineering...

Yunqin Empire was established through laws, actions restrained by courtesy. Disrespecting one’s parents was the greatest humiliation.

Zhang Lingyun came from Thunder Academy, and on top of the fact that he was supported by Rong Family, he was naturally not some type of mediocre individual. What made him water at the mouth was naturally not Chen Feirong’s appearance, but rather his own desire to bring Auspicious Virtue under Rong Family’s control.

However, this type of humiliation was hard for him to accept. He couldn’t control his emotions at all.

“You are courting death!”

His expression fell ashen, looking at Chen Feirong like a wolf, squeezing out these extremely cold words from between his teeth.

Lin Xi’s head hung slightly again.

It looked like he was in fear, but in reality, this was to hide the sharpness in his eyes so that no one would notice him.

He could sense true killing intent coming from Zhang Lingyun’s body. Being under this type of killing intent pressure made it so that he had to carefully control himself, or else he would naturally release the type of grave iron-blooded aura from the battlefield.

Chen Feirong retracted her smile.

Even though Lin Xi didn’t say anything right now, his previous words already fully explained his attitude. With him behind her, she didn’t have to worry about any consequences. “Get lost!” She directly said this again.

“Good, good!”

Zhang Lingyun narrowed his eyes. If he was a normal mediocre individual, he might speak some nonsense right now, but in the eyes of someone like him, Chen Feirong’s attitude represented that there was no room for leeway at all.

If he didn’t have Rong Family backing him, perhaps he would feel a bit of fear at this time, maybe even worry if Auspicious Virtue wasn’t actually that simple. However, he had Rong Family backing him. Moreover, when he arrived at Sunrise Roost Province’s Clear Distant City, Rong Family didn’t give him too much warnings about Auspicious Virtue, meaning that Auspicious Virtue didn’t have any shocking backgrounds to worry about.

“Rather shatter as jade than remain intact as clay? Then let’s just see how you will continue after the jade shatters.”[1]

After narrowing his eyes, colding saying ‘good, good’, he thus turned around. He didn’t even give Chen Feirong a look, slowly using a voice everyone in the water mill could hear to say, “There is White Guanyin Talcum Powder in the water wheel spare parts storeroom.”

This voice rang out like thunder. Everyone in the water mill became completely sluggish, and then they erupted into commotion.

“Go and see where the White Guanyin Talcum Powder is hidden, try to do this as quickly as possible.”

Under this uproar, Lin Xi said this by Chen Feirong’s ears without anyone noticing.

Chen Feirong’s expression was calm. Without any hesitation, she headed towards those waterwheel storage rooms in the very corner of this place.

Since her expression was calm, everyone who couldn’t help but rush outwards momentarily couldn’t help but freeze up, pulling open a dozen or so steps of distance from her, Zhang Lingyun and the others.

In the crowd in the back, the deathly pale faced Wu Qiutian knew that this was precisely the air of a great family… However, what he didn’t know was what other methods this Great Shopkeeper Chen had to reverse the situation.

The White Guanyin Talcum Powder was hidden in several barrel-shaped millwheel parts.

These bucket shaped containers were then piled up on a flat piece of wood used to repair the wheel.

Without carefully searching through them and then lifting them up to look at them, one definitely wouldn’t notice the bags of powder inside.

When these twenty something jin bags were brought out, especially when they saw the bag that was almost half empty, all of the expressions of the seventeen allied families became complicated.

They were all people who worked in the rice business year-round , so they understood extremely clearly that just a bit of White Guanyin Talcum Powder was enough to make large amounts of slightly yellow rice become clean white. Previously, even though Auspicious Virtue forced them to such a miserable state, as fellow businessmen, while feeling helplessness and alarm towards Auspicious Virtue, they also maintained some admiration.

They hoped for Auspicious Virtue to fall, but most of them didn’t wish for them to fall under this type of disgraceful thing.

Almost all of the workers in this water mill, because of this scene, couldn’t help but start trembling from shock and disbelief.

During the previous short period of time, everyone in the outside world was paying close attention to the crazy expansion and amazing decision-making, but no one noticed that under the inciting of Lin Xi, Chen Feirong already completely changed Auspicious Virtue’s internal composition. Some benefits that originally didn’t exist in this world at all, but Lin Xi was extremely familiar with, appeared in Auspicious Virtue.

In Yunqin, most of the merchant’s workers were originally faithful unto death, they all held extreme loyalty and a sense of belonging towards their merchant company. Auspicious Virtue’s rise originally made these workers feel great glory. Together with some benefits that forget about other merchant companies not having, they never even heard of them before, that was why most of Auspicious Virtue’s workers felt a deep sense of gratefulness and admiration towards Great Shopkeeper Chen.

They worked here, so they all obviously understood clearly that they and Auspicious Virtue were doing honest business. However, White Guanyin Talcum Powder appeared here, so how were they supposed to retort?

“Great Shopkeeper Chen, it was precisely because of your suggestion that we came to visit this water mill. Now, there was White Guanyin Talcum Powder found in your water mill again, so what else do you have left to say?”

In front of bags of White Guanyin Talcum Powder that were produced, Zhang Lingyun indifferently turned around, saying this slowly to Chen Feirong.

Chen Feirong didn’t respond, because at this time, Lin Xi already completed his calculation of time inwardly. Then, with a voice filled with cold intent, he said ‘return’.

Time returned to eight halts ago.

He and Chen Feirong had just arrived at this water mill.

“Go inside first to buy me a bit of time. Within at least two halts of time, don’t let anyone get close to the waterwheel spare parts storage. Also, if possible, don’t let anyone’s line of sight even reach those waterwheel storage rooms. I need to go inside and do some things first.”

His body leaned forward slightly, saying this quietly by Chen Feirong’s ears.

Chen Feirong didn’t know what Lin Xi wanted to do, but she didn’t have the slightest misgivings towards Lin Xi’s words. The corners of her lips revealed a faint smile, continuing forward.

Lin Xi’s steps slowed down a bit, first stopping at this carriage’s side.

Everyone continued forward, crowding around the water mill’s main entrance that could allow several carriages to enter at the same time.

While everyone was distracted, Lin Xi slowly moved to the back of the water mill. Then, he quickly advanced, arriving outside that water wheel spare parts storage room according to the position he remembered.

This water mill was a wooden workshop, the outer wall made of two finger thick tung oil wooden board nailed together firmly with long nails. There were beams that held everything together as well, so for a normal person, even if they used a bludgeon, it would still be hard for them to strike it open unless they used an iron saw or hatchet.

However, when facing this sturdy, tightly sealed tung oil wooden board, Lin Xi only frowned slightly, reaching out his hand.

Soul force poured out from between his palm and fingers like wisps. In just a few breaths of time, his palm seemed to have turned into golden iron.

Light crack crack noises sounded. Wooden splinters fell. His five fingers easily penetrated several pieces of thick wooden boards, producing a hole that he could easily enter through.

He silently made his way in like a racoon dog, entering this dusky and grease filled waterwheel spare parts storage.

The dozen or so pieces of wooden boards that were used to repair the wheels were moved aside by him, exposing the bucket shaped millwheel below.

His sight far exceeded normal cultivators, so right now, when he stooped down, he didn’t need to raise these buckets at all, already able to see that there were no White Guanyin Talcum Powder bags inside at all.

A trace of a vicious cold smile appeared at the corners of Lin Xi’s lips.

According to how things went, it seemed like Zhang Lingyun and the others already predicted Chen Feirong would bring up the water mill when defending herself, so they wanted to use this water mill to prevent Auspicious Virtue from having any chance of reversing the situation. If the White Guanyin Talcum Powder bags were placed here a long time ago, then in a situation without any time, he could only deal with the powder by dumping it in the river.

Now, there weren’t any bags here, meaning that these White Guanyin Talcum Powder bags were currently carried by someone.

The other party’s way of framing him was extremely simple, but also extremely effective. Moreover, even if it wasn’t used here in the water mill today, they could still use it somewhere else.

Most intelligent people would choose the most simple and most effective methods.

However, this wayi, it became easier to deal with the other party for Lin Xi. He didn’t have to use his brain too much.

Without stopping in the slightest, he withdrew from the spare parts storage, not even bothering to repair the opening he made on the wall.

He directly returned to the entrance of the mill.

Because he wore Auspicious Virtue’s clothes, moreover making a gesture that he had something important to report to the shopkeeper, the bailiffs at the front of the door didn’t stop him, allowing him inside.

When he entered the water mill, he saw that Chen Feirong, Zhang Lingyun and the others were all gathered next to the grindstone, inspecting rice that was newly grinded. That round faced young Taxman was also still there. Lin Xi didn’t immediately walk up, instead silently slowly following behind him.

Only when Chen Feirong deliberately leaned back a bit, moving a bit closer to him and a few other Auspicious Virtue’s people, did he say some things quietly to Chen Feirong while only moving his lips slightly without any changes in expression.

Chen Feirong’s face always carried a calm smile, as if nothing happened at all. When she left this grindstone, after taking a dozen or so steps towards a rice crops storeroom up ahead, she suddenly stopped, turning around and then giving Zhang Lingyun and that young Taxman a look, saying, “Auspicious Virtue’s matter… it shouldn’t be something that these two sirs are purposely framing us for, right?”

Chen Feirong’s tone was extremely calm, her voice not low at all. In that instant, it wasn’t just the people in this room, even many people gathered outside all heard her clearly.

The air in this workshop immediately froze.

Many merchant people, including Wu Qiutian, all widened their eyes in shock as they looked at Chen Feirong, unable to understand why she would suddenly speak these words.

Even if she had some doubt… this type of baseless words of suspicion didn’t bring Auspicious Virtue any benefits in their current predicament. Could it be that this Auspicious Virtue’s great shopkeeper who gave off such a magnanimous air, despite having a calm expression on her face, her mind had long become completely chaotic?

“Great Shopkeeper Chen, it is best if you do not speak these types of words of baseless suspicion.” Zhang Lingyun’s expression changed a bit, saying coldly.

Chen Feirong could hear the strict feeling of warning from his voice, but she instead only revealed a faint smile, asking in return. “The White Guanyin Talcum Powder you previously found in my Auspicious Virtue’s stands, I heard it was a large half of a bag, ten or so jin?”

Zhang Lingyun’s brows furrowed, saying with a low voice. “That is correct… What is the meaning of Great Shopkeeper Chen mentioning these things?”

“My intentions are extremely simple.” Chen Feirong lazily gave Zhang Lingyun and that young Taxman a look. “Even if sir brought White Guanyin Talcum Powder with you as evidence… it should definitely not exceed a large half of a bag, am I correct? Guanyin White Talcum Powder, this type of thing is prohibited goods, no one would normally carry a lot on their hands unless they have deliberate intentions with them, wishing to frame someone else, am I correct?”

Chen Feirong’s words were much simpler than what she asked when she was in front of the food market. However, the surrounding people were not stupid… In just a breath of time, all of the surrounding merchants’ bodies froze, their eyes filled with shock as they gathered towards Zhang Lingyun and that young Taxman’s bodies.

Zhang Lingyun’s hands trembled ever so slightly.

The young taxman did his best to remain calm, but his expression still became pale, his forehead couldn’t help but break out into some beads of sweat.

Lin Xi looked at these two with an indifferent expression.

In the end, Clear Distant City was only a small place, officials of eighth or ninth rank weren’t high enough either… That was why of the people who followed Zhang Lingyun and this young Taxman, only Zhang Lingyun and the young Taxman were cultivators. Meanwhile, even though those bags of White Guanyin Talcum Powder weren’t large, they were at least seventy to eighty jin. If they wanted to properly place so many bags and do it without anyone noticing, then that was something only cultivators could do.

This young Taxman was a bit fat just like Meng Bai. His somewhat fat official robes were most suitable for hiding some things… that was why for Lin Xi to find out who it was that did this, it wasn’t difficult at all.

This young Taxman, no matter how he put on a play, he already had no chance of turning things around. However, the way Lin Xi did things… towards enemies, his retaliation was naturally extremely thorough, he wouldn’t leave open any leeway, no way it would only be as simple as dealing with the young Taxman.

1. The idiom means that one would rather sacrifice one’s life for righteousness than to lose their own moral integrity, dragon out an ignoble existence

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