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Published at 22nd of April 2020 12:37:11 PM

Chapter 71

Chapter 71: Boneless Ginseng


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Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio

“Xin’er? Xin’er?” Li Tai had no family aside from his one daughter . He protected her as if she was his lifeblood . He embraced her now, and the seven-foot-tall man shed endless tears .

“I’m sorry!” Su Jiu looked at Li Xin, who was still unconscious, and frowned .

Li Tai wiped his tears with his sleeve and shook his head, saying, “It is not your fault, Young Master . It was not intentional . ”

“What is going on here?”


Li Tai, overcome for a moment, sighed . “Even before she was born, Xin’er has had a cold sickness . Her body has always been frail, and she is constantly ill . She cannot be exposed to anything intense or exciting . The physician said that, even if we took the utmost care, Xin’er would not live past eighteen years!” As he spoke, Li Tai gradually broke down into wordless tears .

Life and death were familiar concepts to Su Jiu . Her heart had hardened into iron long ago . But now, seeing Li Xin’s face full of weakness, it turned out that her heart could still feel distressed .

“Is there no medicine that can cure her?” Su Jiu asked .

Li Tai sadly shook his head no . Soon, the carriage came to a stop in from of the physician’s place . Su Jiu carried Li Xin out of the carriage and quickly ran inside .

“Doctor, please save my daughter!” Li Tai entered and immediately fell to his knees .

The old physician rushed to help up Li Tai . Seeing the girl in Su Jiu’s arms, he said quickly, “Hurry, put her on the bed!”

Su Jiu nodded and walked into the room . The doctor took her pulse then took out a single pill from a black porcelain bottle . He placed the pill under her tongue then used silver needles to reach the acupuncture points called Bai Hui, Feng Tian, Tian Zhu, and others . The flush on Li Xin’s face gradually faded, and she returned to her normal pale tone . Slowly, she woke up .

“Father!”

Li Tai went to her immediately . He took her hand . “Xin’er, I’m right here!”


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The physician grabbed a pen and began to write a prescription, explaining softly, “Her body is too weak right now . I’m prescribing medicine that will warm and strengthen her . From now on, don’t let her get too hot or too cold, and do not let her get overly excited or agitated . This way, she could live…”


The old physician could not continue . He simply kept his head down and kept writing .

“Yes, yes!” Li Tai kept replying . He could not keep his voice from cracking .

Li Xin turned her hand over to take his . Her lips smoothed into a smile . “Father, don’t cry . I’m okay! When I grow up, I will be so good to you!”

“What a good girl!” Li Tai held Li Xin’s hand . He turned his head as the tears fell, drop by drop .

Qiao An and the others were teary-eyed as well . They turned and left the room . The physician finished writing the prescription and went out to have it filled . Su Jiu followed him, asking, “Is the young lady’s illness truly incurable?”

The old physician’s beard was grizzled, and his face was kind . He furrowed his brow and slowly shook his head . Su Jiu’s heart sank .

“Actually,” the doctor wondered aloud, “it’s not necessarily completely incurable . ”

“If it is curable, it doesn’t matter how much it costs!” Su Jiu said immediately, a dash of hope springing forth in her clear eyes .

Li Tai had already worked at the tavern for over a month . He was attentive, earnest, honest, and dutiful . He was truly running the tavern as if it were his own business . On top of that, every single account was crystal clear without the smallest error . Also, this past month, Su Jiu had come over often and gotten to know Li Xin . She liked this responsible, precocious young lady . She wouldn’t be able to bear it if she died like this!

“The coldness is rooted deep into her bones and is truly difficult to treat . But once, I did study an old book that seemed to present a treatment method . The only problem is that the method involves an exceedingly rare ingredient . I have practiced medicine for nearly fifty years, and I’ve never come across it!”


“What medicine is it?” Su Jiu asked urgently .

“Boneless ginseng!” the physician said quietly .


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“Boneless ginseng?” Off to the side, Qiao An heard them, and could not help but interrupt with surprise .

“Have you seen it, sir?” the physician asked in amazement .

Qiao An shook his head . “I have only also read about it in books . It’s said that boneless ginseng grows on the southern side of Moling Mountain . It grows on the body of something called the ‘mantle’ and feeds on its blood . Only one wisp grows every one hundred years . When nine wisps have grown, the herb falls from the mantle’s body . That is true boneless ginseng . For these nine hundred years, the mantle must stay alive for the boneless ginseng to grow . If the mantle dies after eight hundred years, then the boneless ginseng immediately wilts . It is incredibly difficult to find . Legend has it that boneless ginseng can grow muscle and produce blood . It can even bring back the dead!”

The physician smoothed his beard and nodded . “That’s right . Many people have heard about boneless ginseng, but not a single soul has ever seen it!”

In other words, this was not something money could buy .

“Thank you, doctor!” Su Jiu nodded dejectedly .

Once Li Xin felt a little better, everyone hurried back in the carriage . Li Tai sent Li Xin upstairs to rest . Su Jiu, Qiao An, and the others went to Yong’an Street to see the newly renovated restaurants . Seeing Su Jiu’s despondency, Qiao An pondered for a moment . He knew it was not for him to say, but he couldn’t help it .

“Chief, the boneless ginseng is not completely impossible to obtain . ”


“Oh?” Su Jiu looked over .

Qiao An looked to his left and right, then said quietly, “I’ve heard rumors that in Rui Wang’s treasure vault, there is a pair of fully matured boneless ginseng!”

Su Jiu’s eyes shone brightly . “Is that true?”

Qiao An nodded . “Yes . Word is that it was a tribute from a tribe in Nanjiang . When Rui Wang turned ten, the emperor gave it to him for his birthday . ”

“All we need is the location, then we can move on it!” Su Jiu gnawed on her fingers and began to plot .

“Chief, many people have heard about the boneless ginseng in Rui Wang’s manor . However, in all these many years, no one has ever heard anything about any attempts to steal it . Do you know why that is, Chief?” Qiao An asked .


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Su Jiu raised a brow . “Booby traps!”

“That’s right!” Qiao An nodded . “Rui Wang’s vault is heavily guarded . Basically, there’s a way in but no way out . On top of that, Rui Wang is kin to the emperor, not just any commoner . If the family throws something away, it’s thrown away . Stealing from any of the emperor’s kin is an offense that will get the offender and all family members within nine degrees of separation killed . That’s why no one has taken the risk . ”

“Don’t worry . I won’t act rashly!”

“I know that Chief sympathizes with the young lady and that you’ll search high and low for news of the boneless ginseng . Instead of hearing this from others, I wanted to tell you myself . I wanted to let you know that boneless ginseng is not easy to obtain!”


“I understand what you mean!” Su Jiu nodded solemnly .

Qiao An also knew that Su Jiu was not a reckless person, so he changed the subject . “The renovations of that side of the restaurant are almost done . It still needs a name!”

“Master An, do you have an idea?”

Qiao An pondered for a moment . “Since this side is called Qing He, let’s call the other side Qing Yuan . How about that? It means ‘a lot of water has flowed through since the beginning . ’”

“I’m uneducated and rough, and I don’t understand at all . If you like it, that’s what we’ll do!” Su Jiu smiled . “When are we going to open?”

“We’ll set up the tables and chairs properly, then hire a few more people . We can open in several days, maybe three or four!”

Su Jiu pulled out a purse and handed it to Qiao An . “You don’t have enough money for that . Use this too . There’s no need to be sparing with it . ”

Qiao An tested the purse’s heft and asked in surprise, “Chief, where did you get this money?”

The thousand taels from the dowry had all been used up to buy the restaurant .

Su Jiu raised her eyebrow and smiled . “Ji Manor’s Second Young Madame sent it!”

Su Jiu dawdled outside until it was nearly dark then returned to Ji Manor . Once she entered, the four servant girls, Chun Xia Qiu, and Dong greeted her respectfully, pouring tea and fetching water . They were very attentive .

Fan Mama knelt on the ground, using a cloth to wipe Su Jiu’s skirt . With a pandering smile, she said, “Young Madame has worked hard to put up the incense . You are so benevolent and full of integrity . Everyone in Ji Manor is in awe!”

Put up incense? Su Jiu looked up at Nanny . Nanny smiled, though her brow still carried some concern .

She said quietly, “Young Miss, just now the main hall sent a messenger saying that Eldest Young Master has invited Young Miss to go eat supper there!”

Ji Yuxian wanted her to go over there to eat supper? After a quiet, peaceful two days, had he finally decided to punish her?

“Alright, I understand!” Su Jiu nodded, thinking .

Nanny wanted Su Jiu to wash her face and change into fresh clothes before she left . Su Jiu scoffed, saying, “Who knows if I might have to fight when I’m over there . I might as well not change, right?”

“You can hit Aunties and Second Young Madame as often as you like . However, over at Young Master’s place, you absolutely cannot hit anyone!” Nanny said in a panic .

Su Jiu laughed in delight . “I’m just playing with you!” Even she wasn’t that stupid!

Nanny let her breath out and scoffed at her . She knew that even though Su Jiu couldn’t control her temper sometimes, she was still rational . Just like that day, when she sent Xie Shi flying with a kick, she’d kept Chang Huan from getting involved because she’d known that she could hit Xie Shi without any problems . At most, she’d be punished for a few months . But Chang Huan was a servant . If he had hit Xie Shi, it would be an offense to a higher rank, and he could have been kicked out of the manor . So, even if Su Jiu got very angry, she still had a clear mind .

Nanny was assured and sorted out Su Jiu’s clothes for a moment . “Go on . If it isn’t working out, just apologize to Young Master and tell him you were wrong!”

“Chief, I am going with you!” Chang Huan said .

“Mm!”

The two of them left Phoenix Garden and headed for the main hall .

 



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