After thinking it over, Shopkeeper Rong and the other shopkeepers ran over to the governmental office to seek assistance for that constable.
Looking at Xiao Tianyi, the constable felt wrong-footed and only answered that it was Jing Zhaoyin.
"Tell him to come. We'll be waiting inside," said Xiao Tianyi. As he led the group of people inside, he said to them, "We haven't had dinner yet. I feel really hungry. Let's head in first."
Ji Man furrowed her brow as she looked Shopkeeper Liu, who was in the middle of the departing group. Really, as soon as she saw him, something bad had happened. She had left them a way out by not monopolizing all of the tenant farmers contracts in one swoop, but they had secretly plotted to make life difficult for her.
Sure enough, she was one of those people that had a tongue like a sharp knife, but a soft tofu heart. Every time that she thought she had been ruthless enough, she still ended up giving people a way out. Giving her enemies a way out was the same as blocking her own path.
Ning Yuxuan's reminder really hadn't gone to waste.
After entering the rice store and finding a private room on the second floor for this group, Ji Man ordered a shop assistant to buy snacks and order food.
The group, which had recently been famished, had their hunger for food replaced by curiosity for Ji Store.
"Owner Ji, are you an unscrupulous merchant?" Sun Zhangyang asked.
With a blackened expression, Ji Man shook her head. "This one conducts my business within the rules." She had just used some tricks and earned more money than others.
"Why would a constable come to arrest you then?" Sun Zhangyang mumbled, "Or, did you kidnap and sell someone's daughter?"
Did she look like a kidnapper? Ji Man didn't know where to laugh or cry.
On the side, Zhu Yurun quietly said, "Mister Ji is a good person."
It wasn't surprising that Qian Yingchen would sneer in response to her defense.
Zhu Yurun pouted and fell silent.
Before the ordered food had even arrived, the group of rice store shopkeepers had returned with Jing Zhaoyin. Jing Zhaoyin was also feeling quite helpless. If the Minister of Revenue hadn’t ordered him in advance, he wouldn't have left his own dinner to come here to handle this business.
"Where is that group of people?" Jing Zhaoyin grumbled, "Why hasn't the constable arrested that person yet? A person that has committed a crime has to be arrested. It doesn't matter who is trying protect this criminal!"
The shop assistant was trembling in fear as he led this person upstairs. The shopkeepers stayed downstairs and looked around Ji Store. They evilly smiled as they examined the white rice with their hands.
However, only a short time had passed when Jing Zhaoyin came downstairs by himself and left the store without saying a word to anyone. He got onto his sedan chair and simply left.
"Sir?!" The shopkeepers were stunned. They couldn't figure out what had happened, so they hurriedly chased after the sedan chair.
Unexpectedly, a fat hand came out from the sedan chair and Jing Zhaoyin said, "Go find someone else. This official can't settle this case. This person isn't someone that you can sue!"
Can't sue? Why not? The rice shopkeepers couldn't figure it out. Still, they couldn't let that person off so easily. They had paid such an expensive price!
For someone to have scared off Jing Zhaoyin, could it be that there was a really high ranking official on the second floor? Shopkeeper Liu thought it over. How high of a rank could that official possibly be? It couldn't be possible for that official to win over the Minister of Revenue, who was second-rank official, right?
With their heads hanged low in disgrace, the shopkeepers paid another visit to the Minister of Revenue, Li Licheng.
Since Li Lichen had taken their bribes, he naturally had to help them out. When he heard that Jing Zhaoyin had actually refused to handle this task, he wondered who could possibly be at Ji Store?
Feeling a bit curious, Li Lichen got onto a sedan chair and went to Ji Rice Store.
In the meantime, Ji Man had already treated the group to dishes and snacks from Luoyan Pagoda. Everyone thought that he was very attentive in knowing that their group used to like food from Luoyan Pagoda the most.
After the dinner, when the group was starting to feeling bored, someone came up to announce that the Minister of Revenue had arrived.
"For such a small rice store, it certainly has a big reputation." Luo Qianqian covered her slight smile. "There's so many people here, and we've all eaten Mister Ji's food. We definitely won't let you suffer any grievance."
Ji Man saluted with her hands. She felt cold sweat gathering on her back. She really had to thank Ning Yuxuan for being carried away by a whim and saying he wanted to eat dinner at Ji Rice Store. Otherwise, who knows, she might have been delivered to the imperial prison under dubious reasons. If someone came to save her later, at minimum, she would probably already be missing a few layers of skin.
When Li Lichen entered the rice store, he felt slightly displeased to see that there weren't many people here to greet him. He felt even unhappier when he heard that Ji Man and the guests were still upstairs.
Looking at the Minister of Revenue's expression, Shopkeeper Liu and Shopkeeper Rong felt overjoyed. They hurriedly led the way upstairs and entered the room after him.
Fortunately, the room on the second floor was big enough. It was a room that Ji Man normally used to hold meetings with the shop assistants, so it wasn't difficult to accommodated this number of people.
However, as soon as Li Licheng had entered the room, the mood in the room immediately changed. The group of people that had been telling jokes and chatting immediately stopped and looked at the doorway.
Li Licheng hadn't expected to see these people. His complexion immediately paled.
Shopkeeper Liu and Shopkeeper Rong were standing behind him. Seeing that the Minister of Revenue wasn't saying anything, they thought they were helping him by shouting, "The Minister of Revenue is here. Why aren't you saluting him?"
Ji Man's heart jumped. They had brought over the Minister of Revenue? Could it be that Shopkeeper Liu and Shopkeeper Rong were willing to pay any price in order to ruin Ji Store?
"This one is Ji Man. Greetings, Minister of Revenue." Ji Man saluted first.
On the side, Sun Zhangyan also saluted and greeted, "Sir Li."
To the surprise of the shopkeepers, Sir Li didn't start throwing his weight around. Instead, after a pause, he walked over to Xiao Tianyi and Ning Yuxuan and respectfully cupped one fist in the other hand. "It's unexpected to be able to meet with the prime minister and the marquis here."