“My master’s surname is Zheng. He slipped and sprained his ankle when he was trying to pick herbs at the back mountain behind my house. I coincidentally encountered him as I went to pick wild herbs and brought him back home. In return, my master taught me how to concoct medicine. Maybe I was somewhat talented but he decided to officially take me in as his disciple.” Gu Ye explained.
But her master had pretended he had a leg injury. She was still confused with his motives even now. Why did her master coincidentally appear on the same day she decided to go to the mountain? Even more, he tried to gain her sympathy by pretending to have a leg injury, pestering her to take him home. Taking her in as his disciple was also one-sided. She only decided to accept the offer to cover up her own concocting skills.
But she learned a lot about concocting medicine from her master and it helped her understand the nature of medicine even more. When she entered the storage space to concoct an antidote and manufacture medicine, she noticed that her skills had clearly improved by another notch from her past life.
Due to this, she stopped acting carelessly and concentrated on concoction with her master. Her master was right. If she didn’t have a steady foundation, it would be hard for her to improve after reaching a certain degree of skills.
Bai Jingxuan revealed an excited expression. Before the sage apothecary was addressed as that, everyone called him, “Zheng Gong.” “Zheng Gong Manufacture” guaranteed quality goods. Zheng Gong was later addressed as the sage apothecary and then people changed it to “Sage Apothecary Manufacture.”
He took a deep sigh and calmed down. He treated Gu Ye warmly and respectfully, “Lady Gu, you must have some extraordinary talent which led you to be valued by the sage...Zheng Gong. I heard my two nephews say that you haven’t learned medicine for long.”
“Yeah, I barely learned for two months.” Gu Ye knew she had her past life’s foundation so it would be easier for her to learn.
But in Bai Jingxuan’s eyes, she was more than talented to achieve the level of an apothecary when she barely learned medicine for two months. Even more, she was only ten years old! Even Baili Apothecary, who had learned medicine since he was a child, couldn't achieve the young lady’s level at this age.
When the time comes, this young lady would become an unstoppable figure. She might even surpass her master! Though Bai Jingxuan was neutral-looking, he was overwhelmed with emotions. He must do everything he could to gain the young lady’s favorable impression and obtain the opportunity to get her exclusive medicine. When she became famous, Jimin Pharmacy would also make a name out of itself!
“Lady Gu, how much of this medicinal ingredient could you make every month? Jimin Pharmacy will buy all of them. We’ll also buy them at a higher price than now!” Bai Jingxuan said.
Gu Ye wouldn’t miss the opportunity to make money. She kept her head down and thought about it before giving a conseravative number. “I manufactured all these ingredients within half a month. I weighed them earlier. It’s 340lbs. I should be able to make 700lbs worth of medicine a month.”
Bai Jingxuan was delighted. The two apothecaries that Jimin Pharmacy worshipped were unable to make that many medicinal ingredients even with their combined efforts. This young lady was too diligent.
Gu Ye was still practicing endlessly. Besides essential needs, she spent most of her time on concocting medicine. It made sense why she had a bunch of dapagliflozin now. But even if she didn’t need to practice as much anymore, she wasn’t worried about forgetting her skills. After all, she had a cheat device, her storage space! Time flew by much faster there. She could provide a month’s worth of goods by working two days in space.
Bai Jingxuan empathized with her. Afraid that the future monarch of the apothecary world might become exhausted, he alleviated her workload. “Why don’t we sign an agreement? Lady Gu, you’ll provide no less than 500lbs of goods for Jiming Pharmacy every month. We’ll take in however much you concocted for us. The price will be double the price of today, ok?”
If that was the case, wouldn’t she earn about 100 silver taels for two baskets of medicinal ingredients? Gu Ming, who had been silent, calculated the price and became speechless. They were able to make an income of at least 200 silver taels from his sister concocting medicine alone! He was a bit moved, wanting to learn medicine with Grandfather Zheng too!
Even if he wanted to learn medicine, the sage apothecary might not take him in as his disciple. Though diligence was important to learning medicine, talent was essential. He could become an apothecary after studying diligently for many years but it was going to be extremely difficult for him to become a grand apothecary. Be happy that two baskets of dapagliflozin could be sold for some silver taels.
Bai Jingxuan wrote the agreement himself after Gu Ye nodded. She looked over it carefully before pointing at the agreement. “Add a time limit to how long I will provide goods to you guys. Two years. If we’re still pleased with each other two years from now, we can continue the agreement.”
Bai Jingxuan was surprised with the girl’s intelligence. She was only a ten years old young girl, yet she considered everything. No wonder the sage apothecary took her in as his disciple. He didn’t have many expectations to be able to work with Lady Gu long-term. However, he believed that Jimin Pharmacy and Lady Gu’s relationship would be positive and stay that way in the next two years as long as they maintained it carefully.
“Lady Gu, do I have the pleasure to treat you guys out for lunch?” Bai Jingxuan asked politely.
Gu Ye shook her head. “We made plans with the elders in the village to purchase New Year items today. I’ll bother you next time.”
“Lady Gu, please stop.” Bai Jingxuan recalled Lady Gu saving the sage apothecary from her back mountain. Seeing how worn down her cotton-padded clothes were due to carrying the bamboo basket, he made a suggestion. He surmised that she lived in the mountains and the road from here to her home was far. To the skinny siblings, they would have to go through much effort to carry the 300lbs of medicinal ingredients to the pharmacy.
Whilst Gu Ye was shocked, Bai Jingxuan continued, “If you don’t mind, you can let me know where you live. We can send people to pick up the medicinal ingredients to save you the trouble of carrying it all the way over.”
Gu Ye thought about it before rejecting it. “Our village is deep in the mountains. It’s very easy for people who aren’t used to the road to get lost. We’ll bring the medicinal ingredients over in the future.”
“Alright…” Bai Jingxuan thought she was just worried about revealing the sage apothecary’s trace. He wouldn’t force his suggestion on her. He ordered Shopkeeper Fang, “Go and bring out the two mules.”
Then he turned to Gu Ye. “It’s too much work for you siblings to carry 500lbs of medicinal ingredients with your bare hands. We just happened to have two idle mules here. If you don’t mind, you can take the mules.”
Bai Jingxuan didn’t gift them horses because mules were more practical when carrying a heavy burden and walking the mountain road. Plus, horses were more expensive. He was afraid Gu Ye wouldn’t accept it.
Gu Ye lifted her brows. Who would have mules just sitting around? Two mules at that? Owner Bai sucked at coming up with excuses. But there were many opportunities for collaboration so she wouldn’t reject his kind intention.
She led the mules and walked on the gradually lively street. Gu Ming had a lot of questions and he finally got to ask them now.
“Sister, when did you learn to write and read?” Before adoption, his sister worked all day long. She had no chance to learn how to read at her third uncle’s family. He even taught her how to read her name. When they were signing an agreement earlier, his sister paid close attention to the content and pointed out the faults. Although her signature wasn’t that legible, she signed her name correctly.
Gu Ye rolled her eyes. “I obviously learned from my master! Who else could’ve taught me? Don’t you see? Even if we’re going to be merchants, we need to be literate. Otherwise, we’ll get schemed into signing unfair contracts! Study well with your third uncle after you go back. Don’t find excuses again. Even if you want to score in the military examination, there’s a writing portion too.”
“Don’t worry. I can’t fall behind since you’re working so hard. I thought I was the big brother, yet you are always telling me what to do!” Gu Ming pretended to wear a sorrowful expression while Gu Ye smiled proudly.
“Oh right. These two mules must cost a lot. Should we really just accept them like this?” Gu Ming was a bit hesitant.
“What’s wrong? Why do you think the owner of Jimin Pharmacy is so polite? That’s because of the medicine I had concocted for them. He gifted us mules as a favor in return so that we would provide more medicine in the future. Since they mean this out of sincerity, we should just accept their kind thoughts.”
Gu Ye knew that it was also because of her master that the pharmacy valued her. But they clearly wanted business and wouldn’t do something that would make them lose business.
The siblings chatted while talking when the pedestrians all rushed towards one direction. The crowd made a circle around not far from here.
Gu Ye blinked her eyes and asked confusedly, “What happened ahead? Is someone seriously sick again? Brother, look after the mules. I’m going to take a look.”
“Hey— be careful!” Gu Ming hurriedly catched the reins Gu Ye tossed. He barely had time to remind his sister when she nimbly scurried through the crowd.
A woman in her thirties was on her knees, her clothes ragged as she shivered in the cold. Her hair was messy and underneath that was a skinny and stiff face. The woman coughed violently from time to time, clearly unhealthy.
“So pitiful. I heard she’s a cook from a well-known restaurant within Yan City. The owner had violated the laws and the restaurant had to be shut down. Because the cook had signed a life contract, she got sold off.”
“That’s right. I think she got a disease on the way there. She’s the only one left. I heard that the officials were going to sell her to the rascals in the mountain to be their woman.”
Two people behind Gu Ye discussed it in a rather pitiful tone.