The Impudent Teng Family

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“The Teng family sure has a grand plan!” Huang Quan sighed, “Do they really think that the land belongs to their family? It’s given away just like that?”

Feng Yu Heng did not have many conflicting feelings about this and said with a smile: “This is a good thing! There’s no need for us to take care of it. The Teng family has already carried out the work of finding merchants. They have also succeeded in attracting clients. Now, not only are there merchants, but there are also people buying things. There are both people and merchandise. How great is that. Lord Qian, over the last half a year, has that area been very lively?”

Qian Feng Shou nodded, “Indeed, as a result of the conditions put out by the Teng family, there have been too many people. Quite a few people have gone toward the fief. This lowly official also went over there at the beginning of the year. There are many merchants, and there are more than twice as many houses compared to before.”

Feng Yu Heng sighed with emotion once more: “Very good! This has saved me the need to reclaim the wasteland.”

Qian Feng Shou was a bit worried, “Imperial Daughter, do not underestimate the Teng family. Starting from the founding ancestor’s generation, the Teng family has been the prefecture guardian. That position is hereditary. After so many generations of management, the current Teng family has quite a bit of influence in Yun Province. It could be said that they are already deeply rooted, and there are practically no people that can move them. Even the prefect of Yun Province needs to give them a bit of face. All of this is because the Teng family has a personal army nearing one thousand troops! These troops live, train and protect the Teng family in the fief.”

“Nearing one thousand troops in a personal army?” Feng Yu Heng frowned and was extremely puzzled, “The fief does have the right to raise a personal army, but that’s just for the owner of the fief. Does the Teng family have this right?”

“Naturally, they don’t, but because Ji An Prefecture was never awarded, the Teng family’s influence gradually grew. After you were conferred the fief, the Teng family did indeed begin to plan for it, but after they heard that the one conferred this land was just… a young girl, they did not take it to heart.” Qian Feng Shou was truly helpless, “Imperial Daughter, do you wish to take back the fief on this visit? Thinking about it, it won’t be an easy matter. You will need to deal with the Teng family!”

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Feng Yu Heng pondered for a long time, and she had some ideas in mind, thus she did not stay for long. The excuse was that the journey was long and the carriages required maintenance. Bidding farewell to Qian Feng Shou, she returned to the courtyard.

The troops that she had brought back set up camp around the courtyard. Qian Feng Shou had also put in some work, sending away the residences that were in the area near the courtyard, opening up the residences for these soldiers. The housekeeper of the manor told her: “Imperial Daughter, don’t worry. The citizens were willing to do it. We in Yu Zhou heard about your greatness long ago. Hearing that you came, the people were very happy. Especially when they heard that you will be taking back Ji An Prefecture, they were even more willing to cooperate. Also, my Lord also provided them with a place to stay, booking many inns. Imperial Daughter can be at ease.”

“Oh?” Feng Yu Heng asked the housekeeper while heading toward the courtyard: “Why would the citizens be happy to hear that I will be taking back Ji An Prefecture? Does the person governing Ji An Prefecture affect the citizens of Yu Zhou?”

“Hah! Imperial Daughter may not know, but the effect is massive!” The housekeeper had a bitter expression, “Over the years, the Teng family has been living in Ji An Prefecture; however, their influence has expanded all over Yu Zhou. It’s not an exaggeration to say that 60 percent of the shops in Yu Zhou were opened by them. Not to mention buying low and selling high, but they are very unfair to the citizens. There are times when people will try to buy one jin of meat, but they will cut out two jin of meat. It was no good if they did not buy the extra jin of meat, and those without money would be beaten. The citizens have suffered quite a bit of hardship.” While speaking, he pointed the way to Feng Yu Heng and continued: “Our Lord Qian has managed it, but he was given a slap by the Teng family. His face was swollen for seven days, and reporting it to the Yun Province was fruitless.”

“Saying it like this, the Teng family is so domineering that they’ve almost aroused everyone’s anger?”

“But of course!” The residence was not large, and they reached the path to enter their courtyard within a few steps. The housekeeper could not continue further inside and stopped in place, telling Feng Yu Heng: “There are strong servants inside. If Imperial Daughter has any requests, just speak. This old servant will be in the outer yard.”

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Feng Yu Heng nodded and led everyone into the courtyard.

Because there were many people, and because this was just a temporary living place, there were not many rules. She arranged for Wang Lin and the others to live in the first two divisions, and it was practically two or three people per room. In the third division, it was left to her, Xiang Rong, Wang Chuan, Huang Quan, Shan Cha and four female doctors from Hundred Herb Hall. She and Xiang Rong slept in the same room, and the other arrangements would be handled by Wang Chuan. Two people per room would still be manageable.

There were strong servants in the courtyard, and they had already prepared the bathtub and hot water. They were waiting for Feng Yu Heng’s group to return to take care of their bath. After they finished making sure that things were proper, food was also brought over. It was only this evening that the people finally managed to eat their fill and feel relieved. The people in the front yard were resting, and inside the third division, Xiang Rong could no longer endure and went to sleep first. This left Feng Yu Heng, Wang Chuan and Huang Quan as the only ones that were rather awake. The three sat outside and drank tea. At the same time, they spoke about Ji An Prefecture’s Teng family.

“How about this servant goes out at night to investigate a bit?” Wang Chuan suggested, “This servant and Ban Zou will go out, and Young Miss can get some rest. We can make plans tomorrow.”

But how could Feng Yu Heng possibly rest? She had a bit more energy than others, and she had gotten some sleep in the carriage. Adding on the fact that she had something on her mind, it would be strange if she could fall asleep. She immediately made a decision: “Let’s go together. Just treat it as a nighttime trip to Ji An Prefecture.” After saying this, she looked at Huang Quan and saw her grief-filled eyes and very magnanimously said: “Huang Quan, you can come too! Let’s set out around midnight. Let’s rest for a bit first.”

Investigating Ji An Prefecture at night really was a nighttime investigation. Just before midnight, Feng Yu Heng got out of bed through Xiang Rong’s resentment. Xiang Rong rubbed her eyes and helplessly said: “If I knew some martial arts, I would definitely go with second sister.” After saying this, she fell back in bed and went back to sleep.

Feng Yu Heng smiled bitterly. In the end, she was still a child. A 13-year-old child needed sleep. No matter how early she matured, she could not cross this boundary of the age.

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Changing her clothes, she deliberately did not choose black clothes. She just chose a dark-blue dress to wear. Bringing along her two maidservants and Ban Zou, the four quickly left the courtyard and headed toward Ji An Prefecture.

Ji An Prefecture was just outside of the outskirts of Yu Zhou. It was just at the end of a small path. Calculating it more accurately, it was no more than three li away. When they arrived, it was deep in the night, and it was a time when the ancient people were usually in a deep sleep. During ancient times, there was not much entertainment nor shops. Once night came, the only sources of light were candles and moonlight. This night was cloudy, starless and moonless. It was as though the entirety of Ji An Prefecture was trapped in a cage of darkness that was just placed there. This gave everyone a feeling of pressure.

Ban Zou quietly said: “A perfectly nice place was turned into this. The Teng family ought to be killed.”

“How is it?” Huang Quan raised an eyebrow, “As I see it, this is better. It makes it easier to move around.”

Wang Chuan also had her own opinion. Leaping onto the top of a building, she said: “The Teng family placed all of its money making businesses in Yu Zhou. This place is just a giant sleeping area. There is also the personal army with nearly one thousand troops that are gathered here. It would not be unexpected for it to feel a bit more suffocating.”

“Look, there really are quite a few shops on the main street.” Feng Yu Heng pointed at the street ahead and said, “Those should be the merchants that Teng Ping attracted, right? Hehe, the land was gifted? What deeds does the Teng family have to give out? Every inch of Ji An Prefecture belongs to this imperial daughter. The deeds for all lands are still in this imperial daughter’s hands. But this is quite good. These people had built buildings for free. When we move into this place in the future, it will save us quite a bit of hassle.” While she spoke, she looked over the two sides of the road. Pointing at one of the two-story shops, she asked: “Look, looking at this shop from the outside, does it look like Hundred Herb Hall? If the shops on the sides can be opened up, it should be roughly the same size as the Hundred Herb Hall in the capital.”

Ban Zou nodded, “That’s quite good. How about just choosing this place!”

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“Alright!” Feng Yu Heng very happily agreed. It was as though all of the shops on the road had been taken in without any reservations. She really did not need to be reserved. The merchants that had been invited in by the Teng family were mostly thinking of getting some benefit. Everyone wanted to enjoy some benefits, and she wanted even more to earn the most.

The group walked along the streets and would occasionally pay attention for any patrolling troops; however, who knew that after walking through two streets, they finally saw a couple of soldiers holding a lantern in front of a residential building. The two, however, were not patrolling soldiers. Instead, they stood in front of the door and seemed to be standing guard.

The group took a look and could not help but feel confused. The so-called residential building was just a small courtyard, and there were three rooms inside. It looked very shabby, and they could not understand. What was there to guard here?

Feng Yu Heng gestured for the three to use their qinggong to take a look inside. Only by looking did they find out that there was another space inside the room. There was an old woman sleeping in one of the rooms, and there was a young woman in the other. In the room with the young woman, there was a man in brocade clothes that sat on the other side of the bed. The man was short and fat, but his skin was fair and clear. One of his eyes was large and the other was small. It was clear that it was a deformity. At this moment, he had an indecent smile on his face that scared the young woman into moving back on her bed.

But the more she avoided the man, the happier he became. While smiling, he said: “Just keep dodging. This one likes this sort of thing. The more you avoid, the more this one enjoys it. I say, pretty lady! Let’s just get it on. It’s not the first time. What are you being bashful for?”

Feng Yu Heng heard this while laying on the wall and rolled her eyes. Could it be that it was adultery? That was not really worth seeing.

Who knew that the young woman would begin to quietly cry. While crying, she pleaded: “Just let me go. Last time, it was you that forcefully took me. I should not have lived, but you threatened me. You said that if I died, my man, who is working for the prefecture guards will also be killed. There’s also my mother-in-law. You wouldn’t pardon her either. What do you want me to do?” The young woman’s voice was kept very quiet. It was clear that she was afraid of waking her mother-in-law in the other room, but she did not know that the old woman had already been given a sleeping drug. She would not wake up.

The man in brocade let out a laugh, “It’s good as long as you know. Just be obedient and listen. Let this one get comfortable. As long as you listen, I will guarantee that your man will not suffer any bullying in the prefecture guard. You also know that I am the nephew of Prefect Guard Teng. He treats me even better than his own son.” As he spoke, he had already reached his paws over. The young woman had nowhere else to evade. Her family was being threatened, and she could only watch him grab her undergarments and move to tear them off.

Who knew that before the clothes could be torn off, the man in brocade’s eyes would close and suddenly fall on top of her. At first, she believed that this person could no longer wait and dove on her, but after waiting for a while, she found that this was not the case. It was as though the man had died. He did not move in the slightest. While she was puzzled, she also began to feel dizzy then fainted in a daze…

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