Chapter 29 – The New Manager is Here
Morning the next day.
Su Yi took his luggage and left the place he’d lived in for the past year.
From this day forth, he would manage the Apricot Clinic, and he’d live there, too.
I’ll skip practicing on the banks of the Great Azure today.
I can go once I have everything in order.
I’ll have to set aside finding a blacksmith and forging a sword for now too, thought Su Yi as he left the Wen Family estate.
Guangling City, Bluefinch Street.
The streets were crowded and bustling with activity.
In the Great Zhou, only a tiny minority cultivated the Martial Dao.
The vast majority of the citizens were ordinary mortals.
They spent their lives working to make a living and interpreting the ups and downs of the world around them.
Su Yi strolled leisurely amidst the crowd, feeling indescribably relaxed.
At the Apricot Clinic, I’ll be able to work with all kinds of medicinal ingredients on a daily basis.
I can use them to cultivate the Martial Dao.
This is actually a good thing for me.
I’ll be able to increase my cultivation speed.
But then, that’s on the condition that I can earn a thousand taels of silver a month…
Su Yi suddenly stopped in his tracks.
A youth in luxurious brocade robes was smiling at him.
He approached eagerly, and before even reaching Su Yi, he clasped his fist in delight.
“Brother Su, you’re out for a stroll too? What a coincidence!”
This was none other than Huang Qianjun.
When the famed delinquent young master of Guangling City appeared, the pedestrians hurriedly retreated, as if he were a natural disaster or vicious beast.
“It seems to me you’ve been waiting for me this entire time.” Su Yi glanced at him.
Who’d be so bored as to go for a stroll this early in the morning?
Huang Qianjun looked somewhat embarrassed.
He started to explain, “Brother Su….”
“It’s fine,” interrupted Su Yi.
“Your father made you do it, right? You can go back and tell him there’s no need for this.”
As he spoke, he continued ahead.
Huang Qianjun suddenly had a guilty conscience.
Su Yi had seen right through him.
It was true; his father, Huang Yunchong, had ordered him to seize every available opportunity to get close to Su Yi.
No matter what, he had to build a connection with him.
If there weren’t any opportunities, he’d just have to make opportunities himself!
At the time, Huang Qianjun had naively asked his father if he wanted him to become Su Yi’s friend.
Huang Yunchong looked at him in disappointment and rebuked his wishful thinking, saying “Never mind becoming friends; if you can so much as become his subordinate, we’ll have cause to light incense in gratitude!”
That was what led to today’s encounter.
How exactly do I become a worthwhile subordinate, anyway? As he watched Su Yi gradually fade into the distance, Huang Qianjun gnashed his teeth, steeled himself, and dashed after him.
He suddenly recalled the attendants who used to tag after him.
They’d always stuck by his side, letting him call the shots.
They were articulate, considerate, loyal, and obedient without question….
Most importantly, they followed his lead in all things!
Now, Huang Qianjun planned to learn from their example….
Su Yi noticed that Huang Qianjun was following him, but he paid him no heed.
Brother Su isn’t making me leave! Huang Qianjun inwardly rejoiced.
He dashed up to Su Yi, noticed the luggage he had slumped over his shoulder, and said shyly, “Brother Su, how about I carry your bag for you?”
“If you want.” Su Yi tossed over his luggage.
A silkpants, a delinquent young master, yet here he was, eager to be an errand boy.
What exactly was going on in his brain?
Huang Qianjun carefully accepted it.
Internally, he was practically frenzied with joy. Does this mean… That Su Yi doesn’t really mind having me around?
If Father knew about this, he’d be happy for me, right?
Now I just have to make a good showing!
I, Huang Qianjun, have thrown away my pride.
There’s no need to fear failing to become a good subordinate right?
Su Yi would never have guessed that just allowing Huang Qianjun to carry his luggage would make him so happy
Before long, Su Yi saw the “Apricot Clinic” signboard in the distance.
The clinic was a three-story building, built facing the street, with an old-fashioned charm.
The Wen Family was one of Guangling City’s Three Great Clans, and they built their foundations on medicine; they monopolized over ninety percent of the local medicinal herb trade, and they owned thousands of acres of medicinal herb plots.
Furthermore, they employed over a thousand medicine pickers, who would venture deep into the mountains in search of herbal medicines on regular intervals.
Just within Guangling City, the Wen Family ran sixteen clinics and nineteen apothecaries.
The Apricot Clinic was just one of them.
When Su Yi arrived, there was already a long line of patients waiting outside the Apricot Clinic’s doors.
But then, two servants stepped outside to send the crowd packing.
“Everyone, hurry and find another clinic! The Apricot Clinic isn’t open for business today!
“We have no other choice! We’re changing leadership today, and our replacement manager has yet to arrive.”
The group waiting in line were instantly in uproar.
Some sighed in disappointment, while others shook their heads helplessly.
Some even cursed the servants out.
It was pure chaos.
But the two servants didn’t care.
They simply turned, walked back into the clinic, and were about to close the door when…
“Wait,” said a voice.
“The new manager is here.
We aren’t closing today.”
The two servants froze, and the line of would-be patients looked over too.
They then saw a lean, handsome youth in blue cloth robes walking right towards them.
“Who are you?” said one of the servants suspiciously.
“Your new manager,” said Su Yi flatly.
He looked the Apricot Clinic up and down. This isn’t far from the Great Azure.
The location isn't bad.
“You’re Su Yi?” blurted the servant.
The other servant finally reacted, snickering, “You haven’t even stepped through our doors, yet you already think yourself our manager? I’m afraid you’ll be out the door before your butt even has time to warm your seat!”
When he heard this, Su Yi keenly picked up on something: it seemed that due to his impending arrival, the clinic’s entire staff had talked things over and agreed to teach their new “manager” his place.
“So it’s him! That’s the Wen Family’s live-in son-in-law.”
“No wonder the Apricot Clinic is closed for the day.
It’s because of him!”
…The people waiting in line started whispering among themselves.
Who in Guangling City didn’t know about Su Yi, the Wen Family’s live-in son-in-law?
Poor Wen Lingzhao had been forced to marry a cripple! Who knew how many people, even now, lamented over her misfortune?
“Honored Son-in-law, pardon my boldness, but I urge you to go home and quietly live out your days as a live-in son-in-law should.
Someone like you is in no way fit to manage the Apricot Clinic’s affairs!”
The servant was increasingly fearless, his tone enigmatic and his expression utterly disdainful.
Su Yi glanced at him, then said faintly, “Going forward, you needn’t come back to the Apricot Clinic.”
The servant was stunned.
He pointed at himself.
“Are you firing me? Hahaha! I forgot to tell you, but my family has served the Wen Family’s Second Elder for three generations, and we’ve long since signed an indenture agreement.
No one else can kick me out!”
He’s sold himself into indentured servitude, so why is he acting so proud? Su Yi couldn’t help but gasp in amazement.
Su Yi walked up and patted the servant on the shoulder.
“You sold yourself to the Wen Family, not to the Apricot Clinic.
I’m the manager here now.
If you really don’t want to leave, I won’t object, but don’t expect any wages.”
“You dare?” The servant’s eyes went bloodshot.
He was furious!
“Screw your granny! How dare you talk to my Brother Su Like that?” Huang Qianjun had followed Su Yi all the way here, and he could no longer restrain his temper.
He strode forward, then slapped the servant right across the face.
The servant staggered, then rolled down the stairs, shrieking like a slaughtered pig.
By the time he crawled to his feet, his head was bloodied and his cheeks were red and swollen.
“You fu—!” He was just about to curse when he saw just who had hit him.
A chill ran down his spine, and he said in a daze, “Young… Young Master Huang?”
The crowd waiting to see a doctor was in uproar; they’d just recognized the infamous delinquent young master.
“You’re still here? Should I interpret this as you inviting me to your house for a visit?” Huang Qianjun’s eyes carried a threat of violence.
The servant dared not linger.
He scampered off, too scared to even fart.
“The hell?” Huang Qianjun spat, then looked around.
When he realized Su Yi had already gone inside the clinic, he hurriedly dashed in after him.
“What’s going on?”
“Why is the Huang Family silkpants mixed up with the Wen Family live-in son-in-law?”
“Who knows….?” The crowd discussed this amongst themselves, all of them utterly stunned.
The smell of medicine permeated the interior of the Apricot Clinic, calming the heart.
Row after row of medicine cabinets were on display, with all sorts of decorations and furniture embellishing different areas.
The clinic was clean and spacious.
“Not bad.” Su Yi stood with his hands behind his back, pleased with what he saw.
At least for a while, this was to be his base of operations.
“Wen Family son-in-law, what’s the meaning of this?” A gaunt middle-aged man glared at him.
Around a dozen others stood beside him: stewards, assistants, apprentice apothecaries, and servants.
All of them wore unsightly expressions on their faces.
They’d just witnessed everything that happened outside.
Su Yi walked behind the counter and casually sat in the wooden armchair reserved for the manager, then stretched before glancing at the middle-aged man.
“From this day forth, I am the manager of the Apricot Clinic,” he said flatly.
“I don’t care what you think, but if you want to keep your jobs, you’d best not stand in my way.”
A man in grey immediately let out a cold laugh.
“You understand nothing! What right do you have to act as our manager? If you provoke all of our old hands, they’ll leave, and the Apricot Clinic will inevitably close its doors forever!”
Su Yi glanced at him.
“If you refuse to listen to me, you’re welcome to leave too.”
The man in grey froze, as if he didn’t quite believe his ears.
“Do you know who I am?”
The lean middle-aged man beside him warned him expressionlessly.
“That’s Wu Yong! He’s an old hand here, and he’s worked diligently on the Wen Family’s behalf for thirty years.
He’s experienced and capable….”
Before the man even finished, Su Yi drummed his fingers against the table and cut off him.
“I don’t care who he is.
If he doesn’t want to work, he’s to leave immediately.
Whether Apricot Clinic closes its doors or not has nothing to do with any of you.”
The group’s expressions changed, and they looked at each other.
None of them would have anticipated that the universally disdained Wen Family live-in son-in-law would be so domineering and impervious to reason!
“Hmph! I refuse to serve a mere live-in son-in-law with such a wildly inflated ego!” The man in grey, the one they called Wu Yong, swept his sleeves and left in a huff.
However, halfway to the door, Huang Qianjun blocked his path.
The famed delinquent silkpants drawled, “Wu Yong, right? You’re welcome to leave, but I’ll be paying your house a visit tonight.
Let’s have a nice chat, you and I!”
Wu Yong’s expression changed dramatically.
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