Hearing this, Lin Fangliang spurted out the tea in his mouth.
“He’s in good health, so there’s no need to worry. I’ll get you some medicine later. You can take back and try,” Lin Fangliang assured Li Changfeng.
Li Changfeng nodded in agreement, then asked indiferently, “By the way, the person who just went out of the clinic is very young and doesn’t look sick. Why did he come here?”
Li Changfeng was aware of Lin Fangliang’s acquaintance with Chen Qi since they all served in the same unit together, but he asked about Chen Qi’s wife as he knew that Lin Fangliang didn’t recognize her.
Lin Fangliang thought for a while, “Are you talking about the handsome ger who just went out?”
Li Changfeng smiled and said, “Oh, you were so observant.”
Lin Fangliang hastily explained to Li Changfeng, “Hey, you can’t say that! If my wife hears it, I don’t know what to do. It’s not my fault, right? Plus, usually only old people come here, so when a young person shows up, how could I not remember?”
Li Changfeng gestured with his hand, “My apologies. I’m just curious, and you haven’t answered my question yet.”
Lin Fangliang replied, “It’s strange. I checked his pulse and didn’t find anything wrong, but he mentioned that he had been infertile for many years. I suspect that the problem may lie with his husband.” He shook his head and recounted what had just happened.
Li Changfeng’s heart skipped a beat after hearing this. If the husband had some problems, that meant it could be Chen Qi… “Okay, let’s not talk about this. Let’s talk about something else.”
Xie Yu was already six months pregnant, but he was thin and wore long robes, so his belly didn’t show much..
“It’s been a while since we last saw each other, and your skin seems to have gotten darker,” Xie Yu said as he hugged Tuan Tuan and looked at Xu Qing.
Xu Qing smiled and replied, “I’ve been working in the fields for a few days, so I got tanned from the hot sun.” Xu Qing didn’t like being pale and felt that a healthy complexion would make him look more manly.
Xie Yu smiled and shook his head, then glanced down at Tuan Tuan, who was tugging at his clothes. “Our Tuan Tuan’s body is getting stronger,” he said, while thinking about the child growing in his own belly, wondering if his child would also be as strong and healthy as Tuan Tuan.
Xu Qing felt a bit bashful and said, “I didn’t feed him much, but he keeps getting chubbier. Look at all the heat rash on his fat folds.”
Hearing Xu Qing’s words, Xie Yu gently opened Tuan Tuan’s small arm and saw the heat rash on his waist. “Oh no, how did this happen? I’ll ask Fangliang to get some powder for Tuan Tuan later. Apply it on him when you get back. There are many children in this town who use it and it works.”
“Okay, I’ll thank Tuan Tuan’s godfather for this.” Xu Qing said with a smile, taking hold of Tuan Tuan’s small hand.
After having lunch at Xie Yu’s house, the family of three strolled around the street for a while, and then drove back to their village.
“Hey, Changfeng wait a minute!”
Xu Qing suddenly stopped Li Changfeng who was driving the cart. He shoved Tuan Tuan in his hand to Li Changfeng and hurriedly ran in a direction.
“What are you doing?”
Li Changfeng looked at Xu Qing in confusion, but Xu Qing didn’t have time to explain. He walked towards a nearby wood and started scratching the ground with his hands. Soon after, Li Changfeng saw Xu Qing came out holding a pile of stones, with a happy expression on his face.
Li Changfeng: “… Wife, what are you doing?”
After Xu Qing had loaded the stones onto the cart, he turned to Li Changfeng and explained excitedly, “This stuff is even better than the jelly I made last night! It’s saltpeter!”
After finishing his sentence, Xu Qing ran back to the spot, searched around, and after a while, he returned to the cart with another pile of stones in his arms.
After repeating this back-and-forth several times, just as Li Changfeng was about to offer his help, Xu Qing stopped him, realizing that there was no space left in the cart except for a small spot for him to sit.
Li Changfeng couldn’t bear to see Xu Qing so reluctant to leave the stones behind, so he suggested, “What if we squeeze a little bit more in?”
“No need,” Xu Qing shook his head and took Tuan Tuan back. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to, but there was simply no room left in the cart.
Xu Qing was already satisfied that he was able to find a lot of saltpeter.
As soon as they arrived home, Xu Qing handed Tuan Tuan over to Li Changfeng, moved all the saltpeter from the cart to the warehouse, and immediately got to work.
Li Changfeng observed Xu Qing’s busy and joyful demeanor, and then glanced at the unsightly stones. He was perplexed by their value, but knowing that they brought happiness to his wife, he considered them important. He helped move all the stones to the warehouse before walking back to the cart. Li Changfeng picked up a stone and examined it closely.
“What are you looking at, give it to me quickly.” Xu Qing snatched the stone from Li Changfeng’s hand and was about to head inside when he heard Li Changfeng speak.
“I’ve seen plenty of stones like this. Why are you treating them like they’re so precious? Shall I go and bring back a cart full of them for you?”
Xu Qing rushed to Li Changfeng’s side upon hearing his statement and asked, “What? Where have you seen a lot?”
“There are many stones like this above the river, not far from the back mountain. I can pull a few carts back for you!”
Xu Qing was overwhelmed with excitement and replied, “Great, please bring me one cart, and I’ll check it out. If they are what I’m looking for, you can bring a few more carts. This way, we won’t have to worry about it during the summer.”
“Sure, I’ll go right away,” Li Changfeng replied. He then handed Tuan Tuan to Xu Qing and drove off in the donkey cart.
Xu Qing suppressed the excitement and lulled Tuan Tuan to sleep before he began to work. He knew that saltpeter was the key ingredient to making ice.
The dissolution of saltpeter in water results in the absorption of a significant amount of heat, causing a decrease in the water temperature to the point of freezing.
Ancient people utilized saltpeter’s cooling properties to create ice in the summer months to alleviate the heat and provide it to the court and dignitaries.
But here, people would just store ice in an ice cellar during the winter for use in the hot summer months.
Xu Qing added sugar to water and then transferred the mixture into a bowl. After that, he took a large plate and filled it with water. He placed the bowl containing the sugar water mixture onto the plate and kept adding saltpeter to the water in the plate. Eventually, it became apparent to the naked eye that ice had formed.
Xu Qing tasted the sugar water mixture and found it to be cool and sweet. As he continued to drink it, the coolness reached his stomach, reducing dryness and heat in his body significantly. He realized that the use of saltpeter had indeed produced real ice. Upon recalling Li Changfeng’s statement about having seen a lot of saltpeter, Xu Qing felt happier. He stored the ice in the well and brought the large plate to the yard to dry. Once dried, the saltpeter could be reused several times.
“I’m back, wife. Come see what I’ve brought back.” Li Changfeng said as he returned, sweating profusely under the scorching sun.
Xu Qing hurried over to take a look, “Yes! That’s it!”
“Alright, I’ll make a few more trips. There are so many stones there, it’s almost like a mountain,” Li Changfeng said as he began to unload the pile.
“In that case, don’t bother. Since it’s all there, we can go later,” Xu Qing suggested, and two proceeded to move all the saltpeter from the cart into the warehouse.
“Come on, wash your hands and face, and I’ll prepare something for you to eat,” Xu Qing said.
It was a particularly hot day, and Li Changfeng was sweating profusely after walking for a while.
Xu Qing retrieved the jar of ice from the well and brought it to the kitchen. He then took out two bowls and poured the melted ice from the jar into them.
“Come, have a taste.”
Li Changfeng took a bowl and was surprised to see ice inside. “Wife, this is ice!” Li Changfeng had heard in the military camp that only high-ranking officials and nobles could afford to use ice in the summer. They would have their servants collect clean ice during the winter and store it in an ice cellar for use in the summer.
“Since when did our house have an ice cellar?”
Xu Qing took a sip of the ice water contentedly and said, “We don’t have an ice cellar in our house, but luckily this uncle has the talent for making this.”
“You made it?”
Li Changfeng drank the cold sugar water in one gulp and asked, “Is that what the stones were for?”
Xu Qing took Li Changfeng’s empty bowl and filled it up again. “Yes, you’re right.”
Li Changfeng’s eyes lit up. He hadn’t expected the random stones to be so valuable. “Wife, let’s keep this to ourselves,” he said. “If the businessmen outside found out about it, it could cause trouble.”
“You think I’m a fool! Don’t worry, just enjoy your drink,” he said. Xu Qing was pleased with Li Changfeng. This man didn’t ask how he had come up with the idea, nor did he mention giving it away to anyone.
“It’s really refreshing! No wonder those nobles and officials like to use this,” Li Changfeng praised. “Wife, you’re really amazing!”
Li Changfeng, having tasted the benefits of the ice water, drove the donkey cart to the back mountain again to transport more saltpeter. He made several trips back and forth until the warehouse could no longer hold any more, and only then did he reluctantly give up.
After a long afternoon nap, Tuan Tuan also drank some sugar and ice water, but it wasn’t as cold as Xu Qing and Li Changfeng’s to avoid the risk of the child getting diarrhea.
At night, Xu Qing placed some ice in the corner of the room to help cool down the hot and dry air.
“Today, I was in the clinic and saw Chen Qi’s wife.” Li Changfeng said quietly, hugging Xu Qing.
“Hey, didn’t you say last time that Chen Qi’s wife left the Chen’s house?” Xu Qing asked while holding Tuan Tuan in one hand.
“Yeah, it’s just that……” Li Changfeng didn’t know how to say it.
“Why, what’s wrong?” Xu Qing put the sleeping Tuan Tuan inside the crib. “By the way, Liu Shijiang’s family wants a stroller, remember to make it for him.” Liu Shijiang was a mason in the village. His son’s wife recently gave birth to a boy.
Translated on ho lo lo novels dot com.
“Well…” Li Changfeng turned over and looked at Xu Qing.
“Don’t look at me like that, say it quickly.” Xu Qing couldn’t stand the man staring at him without saying anything even though he had something to say.
“If a friend is sick, and he doesn’t know he is sick, but I know he is sick, and the disease is quite serious, but it’s not something that’s easy to talk about. Do you think I should just tell him straight?”
Xu Qing felt dizzy listening to Li Changfeng, “Stop! Can you speak a little more clearly?”
Thingyan: Here’s another chapter. I’m really just rushing to finish Ugly Ger before my two-week break is over.
Thanks for the chapter!
Another mc with saltpetre. This one directly added it in! It has side effects!!! He even fed it to the child!!!
Thanks for the chapter 💜💜💜
I think you misunderstood, he put the saltpeter mixture into a plate and then put the bowl with the water into the plate so the ice created in the bowl is clean.
Wow really? I read about this saltpeter in quite a few Chinese novels and thought it was something safe. Thank you for teaching me something new today 🙏☺️