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    Chapter 70: Enemies of My Enemy Are Friends

    After leaving the fur shop, Peng Wang once again gave He Zhiran a thumbs up.

    "Peng Brother, I truly admire you today. Without your help, those fifty wolves would've fetched me only 50 taels. Now, thanks to you, we've more than doubled that amount."

    In reality, He Zhiran wasn't skilled in business. Her knowledge came solely from her previous life's experiences with haggling.

    Feeling a bit embarrassed by Peng Wang's idol-like praise, she replied, "Peng Brother, please don't flatter me. It was just good luck on my part."

    "Don't be modest, Sis-In-Law. I don't praise people casually."

    Glancing at the sky, Peng Wang continued, "We've been traveling for a while and must be hungry by now. Let's find a place to fill our bellies first, then we can accompany Sis-In-Law to purchase supplies."

    The trio strolled along, searching for a place to eat as they went.

    Suddenly, a figure flew out from the book pavilion, crashing heavily onto the ground.

    In quick succession, several young men dressed as scholars emerged from the pavilion.

    "Fei Nanyu, you pauper, how dare you call yourself a scholar?"

    "If I ever catch sight of you in this book pavilion again, I'll beat you every time."

    Fei Nanyu?

    Upon hearing this name, He Zhiran immediately thought of someone.

    Historical records stated that after Nan Qi's death, it was Fei Nanyu who held sway over the government for six long years before eventually seizing the throne by force.

    The Fei surname was already uncommon, and for someone to dare use the royal family's name, even if the characters were spelled differently but sounded alike, suggested extraordinary audacity. Few would dare such an act.

    Thus, she could confidently conclude that the person before her was none other than the renowned founding emperor of the Great Xing Dynasty—Fei Nanyu.

    He Zhiran hadn't delved deeply into Fei Nanyu's past.

    As a result, she knew little about his life before he became the emperor.

    Watching the future founder of the dynasty suffer such misery, He Zhiran's first instinct was that, even if she couldn't be friends with Fei Nanyu, she mustn't become his enemy.

    If the historical records were accurate, Mo Jiuye had died three days after his exile, and the exact cause of his death remained a mystery.

    Now that she was here, she had altered Mo Jiuye's fate on her first day by preventing him from receiving a hundred lashes from Emperor Shunwu. Moreover, it had already been more than three days since his exile, yet Mo Jiuye was still alive and kicking.

    This meant that she had already changed Mo Jiuye's destiny twice.

    The Mo family's enemy was the royal family, so to avenge them would inevitably put her against the imperial power.

    Fei Nanyu would become the greatest adversary of the Great Shun Dynasty in the future.

    As the saying goes, "The enemy of my enemy is my friend."

    Therefore, He Zhiran cherished this opportunity to establish ties with Fei Nanyu.

    At this moment, Fei Nanyu was in a pitiful state, blood continuously flowing from his nose, and his already shabby clothes were now stained with blood.

    Raising his arm, he casually wiped his face, struggling to sit up.

    Just then, two scholars approached him with disdain, ready to continue their assault.

    At that moment, He Zhiran sensed a gaze from above watching her from the back of her head.

    She instinctively turned her head and saw a two-story teahouse behind her.

    If she wasn't mistaken, that gaze was coming from the second floor.

    Focusing on the second level, He Zhiran saw an open window, but no one in sight.

    With no time to spare, seeing Fei Nanyu about to suffer, He Zhiran swiftly stepped forward, placing herself between him and the attackers.

    "I advise both of you to stop while you're ahead."

    After speaking, He Zhiran, with her heightened sensitivity, sensed the gaze once more.

    However, this was not the time for her to investigate. She maintained eye contact with the scholars, focusing on the situation at hand.

    The two scholars sized up the woman standing before them, noting her patched clothing and dust-covered face.

    The taller one sneered, "Which beggar are you? Mind your own business and get lost."

    He Zhiran stood her ground, arms crossed.

    "What if I insist on interfering?"

    "Courting death," the shorter scholar spat, raising his hand to slap her.

    But He Zhiran, having decided to intervene, was ready for action.

    Just as she was about to retaliate, Peng Wang stepped forward and kicked the shorter scholar in the stomach.

    At the same time, the other officer punched the taller scholar in the face.

    Peng Wang was unaware of He Zhiran's motive for getting involved, but based on his understanding of her, she wasn't impulsive. There must have been a reason behind her actions.

    Thus, he chose to support her without question.

    Seeing their leader take action, the other officials naturally couldn't hold back.

    The two scholars, nursing their sore spots, glared furiously at their opponents.

    The scholars trailing behind also closed in, glaring at the group, though none dared to throw another punch.

    "You beggars have some nerve, to actually assault people in broad daylight!"

    Instead of anger, He Zhiran laughed. Pointing at Fei Nanyu behind her, she said, "Aren't you doing the same? This is called turning someone's own tactics against them. Do you understand?"

    Judging from the scholars' attire, they were likely from wealthy families and were probably accustomed to their arrogance.

    Even if He Zhiran spoke the truth, they would never admit it.

    "Who saw us attacking people on the street? On the contrary, you're the one who laid hands on scholars under the watchful eyes of the public, yet you have the audacity to shift the blame."

    Peng Wang, being impulsive, rushed forward, fearing that He Zhiran, a woman, might be at a disadvantage arguing with so many scholars.

    "We three just witnessed it with our own eyes. You scholars were seen brawling in the streets. If you're not convinced, let's go to the authorities right now and ask the county magistrate to settle this."

    He had already planned that, given his rank as an eighth-level official, he could simply reveal his identity at the county office. There was no way he would be intimidated by a few ill-educated scholars.

    At the mention of going to see the magistrate, the scholars immediately cowered.

    If the county magistrate really took Fei Nanyu's side, they might lose the hard-earned status of being students preparing for the imperial examinations.

    "We didn't beat anyone. Why should we go see the official with you?"

    "Going to the official is also fine. It's a fact that your group just assaulted this person. You must compensate for the medical expenses." This was He Zhiran's main objective at the moment.

    Judging from Fei Nanyu's attire, she could tell that he was penniless and in dire need of silver.

    She could provide the silver herself, but she needed a legitimate reason for doing so. Otherwise, with Fei Nanyu's sharp mind, he would suspect her of having ulterior motives.

    Upon hearing that the matter could be resolved with silver, the scholars reluctantly agreed, not wanting to escalate the situation further.

    "How much silver are you demanding?"

    "Among the five of you, I believe twenty taels each would be appropriate," He Zhiran proposed with unrushed composure.

    "What? Twenty taels per person? Fei Nanyu doesn't deserve it at all," the short scholar was the first to object.

    "In that case, let us proceed to the county office and seek Lord County's judgment on whether he is worthy or not!"

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