Chapter 243: Person Who Understands Her Most
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Vinisha
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com
As someone who understood the situation, Su Nuan Nuan kept her peace even when Cang Jian began to curse and swear in the most unsightly way, utterly unbefitting a man of his post. However, in her opinion, one should be sensible and not play the holy benevolent mother during such stressful times. Look, even Duan Tingxuan with all his wit and strength could do nothing against this situation. Are you seriously going to tell this poor man to watch his language after having faced one devastating bad news after another?
However, while it might be cathartic to curse the world in general, they still can’t ignore those thousand over commoners stranded by the flood, ah. First things first, even though these Jurchen people were of a different race, they mostly kept to themselves, they did their best to live well and paid taxes like proper citizens. To say that you don’t care whether they live or die anymore was not something that Cang Jian could bear to say out loud under normal circumstances.
In fact, this eight-foot tall governor was currently squatting in the middle of the second hall, all but crying into his knees from the excess stress. Duan Tingxuan sighed and said, “Pingzhang, you stay here and assist His Excellency Cang. See if you can meet up with the Imperial Envoy in the north and persuade them to divert some emergency food supply to us. Nuan Nuan and I will bring a few people and see about rescuing those flood victims.”
Long Pingzhang’s expression changed, he frowned, “The flood waters have not receded yet, and there are very few boats about. Are you really going to personally visit such a dangerous place with sister-in-law? We can just send a couple of officials with a few dozen soldiers with boats over for the rescue mission.”
Duan Tingxuan said, “News of the military provisions being opened up for public consumption must have spread by now. The soldiers haven’t made a complaint yet, but that’s probably because we have not reduced their daily rations. However, who knows what resentful thoughts might be brewing inside their hearts. Under these circumstances, there’s no telling how many flood victims would actually be rescued if there are no eyes on them. That’s a whole thousand lives in our hands, therefore we can’t just leave things to chance, ah. As for bringing Nuan Nuan, if I leave her alone here, she’ll probably beat me up later. Anyway, the rain had stopped for some time now and I’m pretty confident in my swimming ability, so it shouldn’t be too dangerous.”
Long Pingzhang sighed, he knew that Duan Tingxuan was telling the truth. Under these circumstances, the flood victims were not just victims of natural disasters to these soldiers, but additional mouths that they would have to compete against for food. Without someone like Duan Tingxuan or Cang Jian to intimidate them into obedience, even if they dare not outright kill the disaster victims, they might take their sweet time and procrastinate in every way possible. This would no doubt result in the deaths of a lot of disaster victims. After all, the soldiers could never be as overflowing with sympathy for the downtrodden like Su Nuan Nuan.
However, there was still one big question bothering Long Pingzhang, “You say that you’re going to rescue those disaster victims. But what of the matter of dwindling food supplies? We cannot touch the rest of the military rations now, otherwise even with you and me here, the soldiers will revolt.”
Duan Tingxuan smiled bitterly, “However, we still can’t let those people die, ah. Moreover, the reason why I want to personally head over there is because Fuzhou wetlands overlook the Bohai Sea. Since we don’t have much grains anymore, we might still be able to mobilize the local fishermen to catch some fish as a last resort. What do you think?”
“You’re a lunatic smoking a pipe of dreams.” Long Pingzhang also gave a bitter smile. However, the next thing he said was, “That’s actually not a bad idea. Just go and take the time to inspect Bohai Sea’s resources of shrimp and fish. Leave this place to me. I shall do my best to assist His Excellency Cang until you return. Also, are there any officials or generals you might be familiar with at the north? As you know, it’s easier to negotiate things with a known quantity.”
“No.” Duan Tingxuan’s answer was short and concise, pissing Long Pingzhang off. Then, he addressed the official, the one who had brought the final news, “Go and gather 20 soldiers. We shall move together towards the Fuzhou’s wetlands.”
The official shook himself into consciousness after being addressed by Duan Tingxuan, he quickly said, “My lord heir, but… where do we find boats?”
“Are there no navy among the Jinzhou vassals? Have them transfer their ships over, you are now acting under my order.” Duan Tingxuan snapped. Since there had been no ongoing maritime war, Jinzhou’s Navy was not large. They only have a total of two or three large ships and 40 or 50 small to mid-sized boats. Ever since the natural disaster, the navy had been ordered to stay put and guard against any sudden danger from the outside. Which was why the governor had not mobilized them. However, if they were to rescue people at Fuzhou wetlands, they would definitely need at least a couple dozen small boats. Therefore, Duan Tingxuan did not hesitate to requisition these boats.
Having received his orders, the official ran off. Duan Tingxuan then strolled over to Su Nuan Nuan’s side. With a smile, he said, “I guess you will insist on coming with me, therefore I shall not leave you behind in the name of safety. Otherwise, I’ll probably be scolded to death by you. Only one condition, if you come with me to rescue the disaster victims, you must promise to obey my orders, otherwise I really can’t bring you.”
“En.” Warmth suffused Su Nuan Nuan’s heart. Clearly, Duan Tingxuan understood her the most. Though his approach was different from those heroes from corny novels and TV series, it was precisely because he is different from those fake characters that convinced her that falling in love with this man was the best thing she ever did in her life.
In short order, less than an hour in fact, the official managed to assemble 13 small boats. Though it was not wrong to call it small boats, it was nothing like those tiny fishing boats used by local fishermen. Each boat could hold up to six or seven tons of cargo, which should be just about enough for their purpose.
The group of people entered the water via the Zhouwanzi River. Normally, this waterway would stop at Puwei Town, but because of the heavy rain and subsequent flooding, the embankment had broken down and the entire waterway could be accessed by the Jinzhou Navy.
Though there were some shallow areas, but with their small and relatively light vessels, they were able to travel with minimum fuss.
They soon arrived at the wetlands of Fuzhou. The little town had already been submerged underwater. From afar, aside from a few mountain ridges, the rest of the area had already flattened out into a featureless ocean. If not for the soldiers who were familiar with the area, Duan Tingxuan and Su Nuan Nuan would have thought that they had ended up in the middle of Bohai Sea.
One soldier at the bow of the boat shouted back with bright eyes, “Lord heir, madam, can we cast our fishing nets now?”
“Pu-!” Su Nuan Nuan snorted with laughter. She thought: Looks like practically everyone in this world is a hidden foodie, ah. But aren’t you being a bit too impatient?
Sure enough, the little marquis immediately reprimanded with a black face, “This is flood water, not the sea. Where would you find fish?”
He had just finished speaking when, just ahead of their boat, a large fish flung itself into the air in an explosion of water. It seemed to hang suspended in the air for an endless moment, as if to mock the little marquis’ words. Suddenly, time sped back up and the body of the fish slammed into the water with an almighty splash.
The fish was at least two feet long. From its jumping power, this fish was probably a type of carp. Duan Tingxuan was naturally pissed off by the whole situation. When he saw the soldiers immediately rushing about to get ready to throw their nets he snapped, “Don’t waste your energy on that beast. It’s far more important to rescue the disaster victims.” He was so angry that he actually called the huge fish a beast.
The soldiers rather unwillingly put their nets away. In their eyes, how could rescuing people be more important than filling their stomachs with fish, ah? However, this person was a rather celebrated little marquis, and their awe for Duan Tingxuan was something bone-deep. Therefore, how could they dare defy his orders?
They were just about to heave a great sigh of regret when Duan Tingxuan’s hands trembled, a silver light swirled in the water right next to their boat. Before anyone knew, the little marquis was already lifting a struggling large fish into their boat.
[Gumihou: Woah, good job Duan Tingxuan *Claps*]
Translated by Gumihou from kitchennovel dot com.
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