The Green Lotus Peasant Girl

Chapters List

Chapter 98: Patient

After buying the land, they now had to find a way to plant on this very barren land that they bought. Although Li Qinghe and Zhou Chengkang didn't have to pay for the taxes for the land under their names, everyone felt that it would be in vain to spend that much money on the land, that they assumed: would just be left as a wasteland.

But Li Qinghe had already thought about this matter. She knew that it would be very troublesome for them to clean the barren land for farming. There were also many large trees, and it was not easy to cut them down and dig out their roots. Farming on this land was not cost-effective at all.

"Have someone pull out the weeds over there…" She pointed to the area behind the Yang family, "There are weeds all over that area. After cutting them out, we will start preparing for the spring plowing after New Year. As for the forest with big trees behind us…"

If they can't cut those trees, then they could only plant and harvest medicinal herbs in the forest.

In her previous life, she had heard about planting a medicinal herb that could be grown as vines as well as shrubs in shaded regions that retains moisture. She heard it when Dr. Huang casually mentioned it earlier. She would either have to go to meet him at his clinic or have to invite him here to get some pointers.

Nowadays, no one would intentionally grow medicinal herbs in their house yards, unless of course, you are a doctor yourself. Only they knew the correct ways to plant them as well. Besides, getting the seeds was also a problem.

The next morning, Li Qinghe had Li Xingwang hire some people to start the work on the enormous wasteland.

Li Xingwang didn't just pick anyone for the work as he saw fit. He only hired people who would actually do the job. In simpler words, he didn’t hire people like Zhao Tianfu.

After Mr. Yu had completed his work in the house, he also, like others, came forward to clean up the land. They had hired around twenty people, and Mrs. Chen was responsible for cooking for them. Making food for so many people was also an important task, so Zhou Chengkang built a separate shed in the wasteland and bought a large pot to cook food for the workers.

It was still autumn. The workers were asked to hurry up with their work as winter was on its way. Though the workers were willing to work in the winter, Li Qinghe didn't want them to do it. The days were short in winter, so it was not worth having them work during that time.

Mrs. Zhou and Xiyu would occasionally go there to take a look. Someone knocked on the door today. It just so happened that Li Qinghe was alone at home. When she opened the door, she found that it was Zhao Wanwan.

It seemed that she was living in the village these days. After she opened the door, Zhao Wanwan quickly squeezed herself in and said hurriedly, "Sister, tie rhubarb quickly, he scares me to death."

Li Qinghe frowned slightly, "If you have something to say just say it and make it quick. I'm busy with work."

Zhou Chengkang was busy working in the wasteland and he took Mr. Yu along with him as well. So lately she was the one who had to fill in his role, that was feeding the horses, the pigs, and the chickens. Even at this moment, she was preparing horse food.

Seeing her impatient expression, Zhao Wanwan didn't dare to grumble any more, and said, "You have hired so many people. My father also wanted to help out with the work. In this way, he would also be able to earn a few bucks for the New Year. But I really didn't expect uncle to be this unwilling to hire him; and said that my father can't work there with them."

"Uncle is right." Li Qinghe turned around and resumed her work, "Your dad has never worked on a field, I bet he can’t even mow the grass."

"He can always learn." Zhao Wanwan walked up to her and squatted down. She had no intention to give up this easily. She extended her hand and asked, "Do you want me to help you out with this chore?"

Li Qinghe glanced at the pink dress she was wearing and said, "No, I don't want your clothes to get dirty." She then added, "It's your father's look out whether he wants to learn. I have hired people to work and spent a large amount on it. I pay them three hundred cents every day to clear the land. So I don't have more money to spend on the wage of another person. I'm afraid, but it is not possible to hire him this year." She doesn’t need to help everyone to make money; and besides, it was more important for her than the work to complete. In a group of workers, if one person goes to rest, the others will inevitably follow his suit, which will lower the overall work efficiency.

"How could that be true?" Hearing her deny the help, Zhao Wanwan withdrew her hand. With a look of disbelief, she said, "You have a total of up to nearly fifty acres of land."

Li Qinghe replied helplessly, "Yes, but the entire fifty acres of land is barren. If I rely on it to eat, sooner or later I’ll starve myself to death."

Even if they do make money out of it, that would be for the future and not the present. For now, it felt like they were continuously adding money to a bottomless pit. Not to mention, the amount used for paying wages was not small either.

"Why did you use this much of the silver to buy that damned deserted forest? What is the use of buying it?" Zhao Wanwan asked with a puzzled look on her face, "Just because you needed to spend all the silver and not lend it to the villagers? Was that it?" She wanted to ask if the purpose behind this decision was actually to not lend money to her father or not.

It was not a good thing to say it out this bluntly. Li Qinghe frowned and said, "even if I had the money and did not buy land from it, why do I have to lend it to others? If I didn't lend my money to anyone, can they still blame me for doing something wrong?"

At that moment, Liu Lanhua came out from the backyard holding a basin. He called out, "Sister, the chickens are out of food again. Do you want me to feed them?"

After she walked to them, she saw Zhao Wanwan squatting in front of Li Qinghe.

The two looked at each other, and both felt a little uncomfortable.

Li Qinghe, who was caught in the middle, didn't seem to notice the stiff atmosphere in the air at all. Recently, Li Fu and Zhao Dashan were helping them in cleaning the wasteland. Liu Lanhua usually stayed back at home, but her sister-in-law's health was not good these days and she couldn't sleep at night. Instead, she slept in the mornings, and any noise in the house would disrupt her sleep. So, Zhao Dashan simply brought her along to work. When it was dinner time, she would go home to cook for his sister and talk with her.

As for working here, she would help her with the housework and eat there, despite not getting paid.

Hearing her question, Li Qinghe replied casually, "The chickens don't have a fixed schedule to eat. After the food is finished, I'll add some more. It's going to be winter soon and it will be difficult to raise them."

Liu Lanhua smiled, "Sister, you've been raising the chickens well. My mother also used to raise a chicken before and it hatched a dozen eggs. In the end, only one survived but sadly it was also bitten by a dog after it grew a little bit chubby."

After she finished speaking, she went into the shed and took the chicken food, and went back into the backyard.

Zhao Wanwan was in a complicated mood, "Sister, why did you ask her to work for you? Is she even getting paid?"

Hearing her last two words, Li Qinghe shook her head in denial, "She's just here to help out. My brother-in-law felt she's getting bored at home so he asked her to help me. She just eats two meals here and is not getting paid."

Zhao Wanwan immediately lost interest after hearing this. She had just asked about it casually. Now that she had a different status, she can't work casually, especially like the work of taking care of chickens and pigs, which was too dirty for someone like her, "So, can my father really not work for you?"

Li Qinghe shook her head, "My eldest uncle is responsible for recruiting short-term workers, what if he misunderstands, if I just stuff people in there?"

Zhao Wanwan hurriedly said, "But he said if he hired my father, you would not like it."

She denied to help him too many times already, it clearly meant that she definitely disliked him. Normal people wouldn't continue to pester someone with such questions, as they should be able to understand the meaning at this point already, they would feel ashamed to even ask again.

The only sound to be heard in the courtyard was the sound of Li Qinghe cutting the grass leaves. After a few seconds, Zhao Wanwan stood up and said with a sigh, "My husband wants to take in a few students, if you know the right ones that deserve it, you can ask them to come to us. The tuition fee will be cheaper."

Hu Yanxi could also make some money in this way.

Speaking of scholars, the villagers finally got back their land that was put under Qian Laixing’s name for getting exempted from paying any taxes, after a lot of turmoil. They were also fined with paying three years of grain taxes. So, Hu Yanxi was very cautious with this matter. The farmers were usually timid. Once they had been caught they were punished by just paying the fine of three years worth of taxes. But the magistrate said that if he finds that they did it again, then their lands will be seized by the government and will be sold to others.

After the magistrate said this, no one looked for Hu Yanxi. Even the people who had already put their lands under his name, went to take it back.

The only way to earn money using the grain tax had been cut off now. So now he started accepting students. The tuition fee earned from it was not small, and was enough to feed his family. She also heard that Hu Yanxi's mother had stopped working. As someone who considers herself a scholar's mother, she felt it was not ideal for her to work for others anymore.

Zhao Wanwan walked out by herself. After she walked away quite a distance she turned around and realized that the courtyard door was still open. Not only did she come to see her off, Li Qinghe didn't even bother to close the door.

After Hu Yanxi was recognized as a scholar, people who used to look down on the mother and daughter in the past, now took the initiative to greet them respectfully. Only the Li family had never changed their attitude towards them.

When she went to Li Xingwang before, she could detect the faint dislike in his eyes for their family. Especially when the old man Li looked at her, his eyes were filled with disgust.

In fact, many people who asked Li Xingwang to hire them, including the Yang family, were rejected. After Yang Lanhong was taken back, he never left the house again. After the Yang couple were rejected, they didn't come to their house to ask again.

After more than 20 people working for nearly half a month, a large area was finally cleared up. They pulled out the weeds and turned the soil. About ten acres of land was cleared. Not only were the weeds pulled out, but the small and big rocks were also moved to expose the underneath soil surface. Due to the barren slope, the soil surface was not flat as they moved upwards, but rather looked like a modern terrace field. They can finally start plowing when the spring arrives.

As the weather cooled down, it drizzled and made people feel chilly. Therefore, the couple asked them to stop working and would think about the remaining work next year.

Besides, all the workers also had to go home to prepare firewood for the New Year.

They were very busy lately, so Mrs. Zhou had been taking care of Xiyu the whole time.

That night, when it was bedtime, they heard someone banging loudly and continuously on their door. The person seemed to be in a hurry. Zhou Chengkang went to open the door, and after he returned to the room, he said, "I need to go to the town right now. Will you come along with me?"

Li Qinghe was confused, "Who is it at the door?"

Zhou Chengkang had already started dressing, "It's your brother-in-law. His sister is very ill, and she needs to be taken to the town immediately."

"I'll come along too." Li Qinghe got dressed and went out behind him. Zhou Chengkang already brought the carriage in front of the door. Outside the gate, she saw Liu Lanhua holding a weak girl. In the moonlight, she saw a girl who looked very thin and frail, and was not even as big as a normal ten-year-old girl.

It seemed that it was not really an exaggeration, that no one proposed to marry Zhao Dashan's sister. Someone who married such a girl, not only had to forget about doing the household chores and giving birth to a child, but instead would have to worry about her death at any time.

When everyone got on the carriage. Zhou Chengkang and Zhao Dashan sat in the front, and Li Qinghe and the others went inside. Under the light flame of the candlelight, Li Qinghe saw the girl's blue face. It looked like she was about…

Even though she knew the girl must be seriously ill, if they came in the middle of the night, she did not expect her to be so sick after so many years of illness. Li Qinghe jumped out of the carriage and said, "Wait."

She rushed back to the room like a gust of wind. After a few seconds, she came out with two quilts from the room and said, "The road will be bumpy."

Zhao Dashan wiped his face, "Thank you, sister."

With two extra quilts in the carriage, Zhou Chengkang sped up the carriage and they arrived quickly at the clinic. There were several doctors in the town but Dr. Huang was the only one who lived in the clinic.

Seeing Zhao Xiaotao's appearance, the sullen look on his face from being woken up just after he fell asleep immediately changed. After checking her pulse, he went to the medicine cabinet to get the medicine. He very quickly poured the medicine into a bowl, while his wife started to make fire to boil it quickly.

After a quarter of an hour, the color of the medicinal soup turned into its prepared color. Dr. Huang couldn't wait for it to cool down, so he put it in a cold water basin to fasten the cooling process. After it cooled down, he quickly fed Zhao Xiaotao the medicine in a mere few seconds.

"Fortunately, you came quickly and on time."

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