Soon after, she returned to her normal expression and left the restaurant, starting to stroll on the street by herself.


Su Xi-er walked up to a peddler who was selling buns. Thinking that she wanted to buy some, the peddler immediately said, “Miss, you are too late; the buns are all sold out. Apart from the New Year, the day of the state banquet is the busiest day of the year.”


“How many coppers for one of your buns?”


The peddler thought she still wanted to buy buns. But I have no buns left. So he explained again. “Buns are not expensive. The meat buns are two copper coins each, and the vegetable buns cost one copper each. They are all sold out now, so you’ll need to come back at night to buy them.”


Su Xi-er laughed. “I am only asking. If they are sold out, then I can’t buy any. How many buns can you sell in a day?” She wanted to know the living conditions of Nanzhao’s civilians.


“Sorry Miss, I can’t tell you.” The peddler immediately tidied up his steamer and started to ignore Su Xi-er.


Just as he left, another peddler selling flour on the side shook his head and sighed to himself. “I will need to import less flour next month...”


Having to import less must mean that his customers aren’t doing very well. The bun and noodle stalls must not be doing well either.


Su Xi-er had vaguely understood the living conditions of the civilians at the capital from this one point.


Su Xi-er looked at the peddler who was selling flour. “Why are you importing less flour? All the buns from the stall next to yours sold out today, yet you are still worrying about your business?


This peddler was not as cautious as the one from the bun stall. He directly said, “This year’s state banquet is not the same as the previous one. For the past few months, the amount of flour I sold has been decreasing. All the farmers have harvested the wheat from the fields, but they have it all stored away. Even though the business is already doing poorly, the tax has also increased.”


Su Xi-er’s eyebrows twisted slightly before she fixed her expression. Taxes affect the civilians’ living conditions, and should be reduced instead. Did Yun Ruofeng increase the tax to use on military supplies?


“Some of the stronger men from the farmers’ families have been recruited to the military camp. Nanzhao is already peaceful, why does it need more soldiers?” The peddler who sold flour was confused and shook his head left and right.


Su Xi-er softly reminded him. “Nothing will happen if you say those words to me, but you must be careful that someone with ill intentions doesn’t hear you. This is especially true during the state banquet.”


The peddler suddenly realised this, and patted his chest in fear. “Thank you for your reminder, Miss. I have always had a big mouth.”


Su Xi-er slowly said, “There is no use complaining about tax. Let me teach you something instead. You see how your flour is all white? If you make some dough and grind up some petals or vegetables to colour it with, people will be attracted by the numerous colours. This holds especially true for those noble families.”


The peddler grew excited as he listened. I didn’t know I can do that! Who would’ve thought of colouring the dough? All the buns are white, but if they were pink, yellow, or even green, they would be so pretty.


If I keep this method a secret and add my own special ingredients, I will make a lot of sales!


The peddler immediately bowed. “Many thanks Miss, do you want some flour to bring back?”


Su Xi-er shook her head. “No need, but you should try using the method I taught you.” She then turned on her heel and left.


The peddler stood in front of his flour stall and stared at Su Xi-er’s slender figure for a long time. This woman is not only beautiful, but smart as well. Did I just meet a goddess? Even if she isn’t a goddess, she’s close enough.


The peddler felt admiration for Su Xi-er, praising her in his mind.

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Sangria

TLC: Rakumon


Rakumon: Haha SXE can be a businesswoman XD I wonder what she's planning hmm