Chapter 210 Sweet & Sour Pork with Pineapple (b)
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Gumihou
This is one of Gumi’s favourite chapters.
Everyone’s attention was suddenly on Shiyu.
However, instead of questioning her word or asking for details of her secret technique, the one question they have was, “Do you need us to do anything?”
“Yes,” said Shiyu immediately. “I need everyone’s help. To be more precise, I need the help of your backers.”
A visitor came to the largest trading market at the Imperial Capital. This trading market was owned by the Ling Clan. Yes, that Chilli Pepper Ling Xiaoxiao’s family clan. Anyway, the visitor was a plainly dressed, ordinary-looking man with a pleasant face.
However, managers and assistants in the trading market knew that Cultivators live by a different set of values.  They had served many rich and powerful Cultivators who sometimes came in looking like they had just wrestled bear to the ground, had probably slept in trees for several days before stepping into shops in their sloppy clothes and messy hair.
Therefore, when this plain and ordinary-looking person came up to the counter, the  receptionist gave his professional smile and waited for the person to speak first.
“Please give a quotation for all of the beast cores in your trading market,” said the plain and ordinary-looking person mildly. “Regardless of their ranking, I’d like to buy them all.”
At first, the Receptionist thought he must be suffering from auditory hallucinations  and his smile twitched reflexively. However, the plain-looking customer did not smile. He looked very serious. Finally, the Receptionist coughed into his fist and said tactfully, “Dear honourable customer, we have over a thousand beast cores in the trading market. It is a little difficult to give an accurate estimate-”
Because this plain-looking visitor had just placed the trading market’s VIP card onto the table.
The Receptionist’s smile changed, “This lowly one shall prepare the quotation for you, please wait for a while.” He ran off to look for his Supervisor, knowing that Supervisor will pass the message up the command chain.
Indeed, the message soon reached the elder Steward in charge of this particular trading market. The  Business Steward gave the Receptionist a once over and said, “You saw the VIP card?”
“Yes, this lowly one saw it with his own eyes,” the Receptionist confirmed.
“Good. Everyone, go to the counters and collect all the unsold beast cores. We’ll give him as many as he could swallow. Also, Xiao Wang, run to the Ling Estate now and inform the Estate Steward about this,” the Business Steward Elder in charge began giving orders.
At his words, the entire trading market suddenly became very busy. The young man called Xiao Wang was very swift and quickly ran the three miles towards Ling Estate to give his report.
When the  Ling Estate Steward received the report, he judged the matter to be urgent and quickly trotted for the master’s study.
Ling Estate Study.
Patriarch Ling was currently discussing matters with one of his business stewards.
“…Patriarch Ge had approached me to cooperate with the second tournament at the Public Square? After much consideration, I believe the Ling Clan should stay out of this. It’s too irregular and we might find ourselves roped into something nasty. You should be careful as well and make sure not to get implicated…”
A message came in, informing him that the Estate Steward wished to speak with him.
Patriarch Ling knew that the Estate Steward would not interrupt him in his study unless the matter was truly urgent. After a few final words of advice, he sent the subordinate out of the study and met with the Estate Steward at a nearby pavilion.
“Has something happened?” he asked.
The Estate Steward quickly explained the matter as reported by Xiao Wang, “…the fact that the elder in charge felt it necessary to send a runner over to inform us of the matter seems quite suspect. This one also felt that the business is trade is too good to be true and dare to suggest that perhaps a conspiracy might be involved…”
Patriarch Ling frowned.
It was indeed unusual.
The price of a single beast core is quite dear, but not impossible for rich clans to purchase a dozen or even a few dozen at once. It’s rare for people to purchase up to a hundred pieces of the core, but a thousand?
That is… not something a regular clan or organisation could swallow.
Finally, the key question is… why would anyone want to buy so many beast cores?
To hoard stocks and influence the market?
If that’s the plan, the buyer is in for a nasty surprise. Even if they could buy up all the beast cores from the whole of the Eastern Empire, there would always be more in the next cities or the next country over. Unless every single monster dies off in this world, the supply of beast core would never run out.
Patriarch Ling thought for a while and finally said, “Inform the runner, tell the elder in charge to conduct business according to the standard rules of transaction. Also… send someone to the other trading markets. Find out if they are also experiencing the same situation.”
The Estate Steward immediately replied, “This old slave already sent people to investigate. We should have news soon.”
The runners came back nearly an hour later. The news was all the same. Someone had sent people to the trading markets and medicine shops within the Capital to purchase beast cores. All the beast cores.
Patriarch Ling looked up at the sky. It was still the same colour, ah… Nothing seems to have changed, so why…? Had he somehow missed some vital news? There should be some kind of movement before the sudden wholesale purchase of valuable items like this.
However, after some thought, he decided to go ahead with the business.
That same afternoon, many people aside from Patriarch Ling had the same thought.  They were all wary and a little suspicious, but there was no reason not to go ahead with the business. Nevertheless, many set aside a part of their beast core stock, waiting to see if the price would increase in the near future.
After all, it’s part of a merchant’s nature to pursue profit.
Still, this sudden wholesale purchase of beast core that swept over the market caused quite a ripple effect. With half the stock gone, a price increase would be inevitable.
In fact, the shock of the sudden beast core buy up was so strong that no one even noticed the sudden decrease of Spiritual Beast meat that was brought into the city. In the end, no one associated these two matters together.
Later that evening, Ling Xiaoxiao came home unexpectedly to visit her father and stayed to chat with him over dinner. The topic, as he had half expected, moved onto beast cores. Unexpectedly, though, it was not about the beast cores in the market.
“It’s really weird! My classmate and I were just talking about how well-stocked the College’s Hidden Treasure Pavilion is. Today we went there to exchange our CP for a Wood Attribute beast core when we found that all the cores were gone! It was so strange… anyway, I promised to gift my classmate a Rank 3 Wood Attribute beast core, I take some with me, right? Father?”
Ling Xiaoxiao’s words were merely the casual chattering of her day to her beloved father. As a second-generation nouveau riche, casually gifting 10 Rank 3 beast cores to a classmate was nothing to her.
However, Patriarch Ling paused. He… had unexpectedly caught a clue to today’s odd happenings.
To buy up so many beast cores at once… it had to be for some special purpose or other. However, no matter how influential they are, they should not be able to touch the Hidden Treasure Pavilion’s stocks… unless… the person behind the buy up is from the Imperial Academy itself.
A very influential person within the Imperial Academy.
A thought began to form in Patriarch Ling’s mind and suddenly, his heart rate sped up.
A merchant’s life is a series of gambles. Betting on the present to reap the future. Patriarch Ling might be facing one of the biggest gamble in his life.
[Gumihou: Okay, Gumi adjusted the ending and add on the ‘betting on the present to reap the future’. Because it sounds badass. Go, Patriarch Ling!]
Gumihou is keeping track so that you don’t have to ~
|凝氣||Condensation Stage||Stage 1|
|化丹||Core Transformation||Stage 2|
|凝丹(46)||Core Condensation||Stage 3|
|化神(52)||Divine Transformation||Stage 4|
|成嬰||Nascent Formation||Stage 5|
|返墟||Revert Decay||Stage 7|
|歸真||Original Purity||Stage 8|
|成仙||Become immortal||Stage 9|
 Added More Details as Embellishments: Not for Drama, that’s different. Just to make the characters a little more lively.  USMiC – Ling Clan trading market Receptionist: No name, but he seems competent  USMiC – Ling Clan trading Estate Steward: Capitalised their titles as names  USMiC – Ling Clan Estate Steward: Could sometimes be translated as ‘butler’ but that gives a rather stiff upper lip English gent kind of image? He’s a person who 管家, a person who looks after the house. So, ‘housekeeper’ would be more correct, except that gives an image of a lady with a broom or a vacuum cleaner…
So, Estate Steward it is. Since he’s in charge of the overall housekeeping etc. Could also be ‘manager’, but eh, steward, manager, supervisor etc are all kind of like a sliding scale of things?
Decide to go with Steward instead of Manager for a more old timey feel. Differentiate business and home management with ‘Estate’ and ‘Business’ before their stewardship title.
After all, in the Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King: when the king was absent, the Steward was in charge of the country, so that position’s pretty lofty.
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