Translated by: daryldyh
Sponsored by: Chase E. from the USA
This is the second time the queue is cleared since I started this project. I appreciate the support everyone! 34 chapters released in 25 days. I would like to know what you guys think of the story. Go into this poll here!
Chapter 64: Father Emperor’s Gift
“Hehe, thanks,” Hong Xiabao chuckled and said. “Aiya, don’t just sit there blindly! Quickly, grab some meat and eat! The dishes are getting cold…”
“Ah, I agree. Everybody eat!” Fang Xinghan also asked everybody to start eating. This ninth prince has always had surprises for people. Who knows how his brain works — ideas seem to always pop up in his mind. And those are not ordinary ideas, they are mostly brilliant.
“Xiaobao ah,” Fang Xinghan drank some beer and said, “I brought these craftsmen here. Is your Living Printing Technique…” As always, he had this in mind all the time.
“The initial moulds are done. After eating, I’ll bring you Uncle Fang to have a look.” Hong Xiaobao drank some fish soup and sighed satisfactorily. “Aiya, seems like my culinary skill has improved yet again. This fish soup is great! Let’s drink together everyone!”
Everyone cheered and very quickly, the dishes were swept.
After filling his stomach with wine and food, Hong Xiaobao casually wiped his mouth with his sleeve before burping. “Zhao Four, regarding the moulds, are they baked yet? Let me see.”
“Yes Your Majesty, they’re done.” Zhao Four went to retrieve the moulds and soon showed them to Hong Xiaobao, “Have a look. They are still hot now. I was afraid that they would crack if I used high heat, and so I tuned down the fire for a bit. It seems quite successful.”
“Not bad, you’re quite smart!” Hong Xiaobao commended him and passed the moulds to Fang Xinghan, “Uncle Fang, take a look.”
“En, let me see!” Fang Xinghan carefully took over the 3 moulds which were all around the size of his thumbnail. On the main side of the moulds, each mould had ‘Hong’, ‘Xiao’, and ‘Bao’ three words. He immediately said, “En, not bad, not bad! Let me try!” He then went to take a piece of paper, brush the moulds with black ink and slowly pressed the paper on the moulds. In an instant, the paper had ‘Hong Xiaobao’ written on it.
After that, Fang Xinghan arranged the order and repeated the process. This time, it was ‘Xiaobao Hong’.
“Great! Great!” Fang Xinghan was overjoyed. “This idea is ingenious! As long as the moulds don’t break, we’re able to print whatever and however we want! Why hasn’t anyone thought of this for the past few thousand years. What a pity…”
Qingqing was looking from the side with her bright eyes. She then looked at Jian Pu and realized she was shocked as well.
The concept of Living Printing Technique was actually rather simple. However, the one who could thought of this idea was simply a genius.
“Ah, this will not do. Hehe.” Hong Xiaobao curled his finger around his hair and suddenly remembered something. “I forgot something, the backside of the moulds should be carved with words as well. Otherwise, arranging the words in the future would be inconvenient.” Hong Xiaobao immediately took out his small knife and started to carved the exact same words on the other side of the moulds. He then tried to rearrange the words. As he expected, it was much less time-consuming since both sides could be used to print.
“After making a frame for each mould, it would be perfect by then.” Hong Xiaobao smiled and looked at the craftsmen from afar. “That uncle over there, can you come here for a while? I want to ask you something!”
“Your Majesty,” one of the craftsmen walked towards Hong Xiaobao. “Please ask.”
Hong Xiaobao pondered for a while, “This mould is still considered oversized. Based on your experience, how small can it be if I were to mass produce this item?”
“Hmmm…” The craftsman thought for a while and said, “Metals would be too difficult to make in a small form factor. However, the moulds can go as small as the nail of my pinky using jade. I would suggest making them a little bit larger to avoid breakage.”
“The nail of your pinky?” Hong Xiaobao looked for a while and clapped. “Great, the size is perfect! However, regarding the jade…” He then looked towards Fang Xinghan, “Uncle Fang, what kind of jade do you think would do?”
If Hong Xiaobao was on Earth, he could name at least ten different types of high-quality jades. However things were quite different in this world, the best thing to do was to consult the experienced Fang Xinghan.
Fang Xinghan pondered before saying, “Silver Feather Jade has a soft nature, it would be rather easy to have words carved on them. However, they wouldn’t last long and might break easily. Gold Blood Jade is very stiff but carving words on them would be difficult. Cloud Crystal Jade is great but isn’t widely available. Exquisite Blood Jade may be the best choice in terms of quality, but that is too expensive…”
Fang Xinghan was counting the cost and was searching for alternatives. To everyone’s surprise, Hong Xiaobao clapped once and said, “I have made my decision. The Exquisite Blood Jade will be the material used! Aiya, why haven’t I thought of it earlier… We must use high-end materials in order to be domineering!”
Exquisite Blood Jade! This thing cost a thousand silver taels for just a small piece. Imagine how much silver would be poured into buying it if it was used to carve millions of words.
“Why are you guys looking at me?” Hong Xiaobao looked around, “What, am I doing anything wrong?”
“Such a spendthrift,” Qingqing silently said. “I haven’t seen anyone spending money so irresponsibly before. It would cost tens of thousands of silver taels just for the moulds.”
The Exquisite Blood Jade that Yun Caixiao owned was considered to be the best and cost around a thousand tales for an egg-sized one. An inferior one could be bought at around two to three hundred silver taels. Regarding the lowest quality ones, they cost around twenty silver taels.
“Don’t think about it too much. Just do it!” Hong Xiaobao said.
Just as everyone was going to advise him, a guard rushed in and silently spoke beside Hong Xiaobao’s ear, “Your Highness, His Majesty said he wants to give Your Highness a gift. I heard it was rather valuable, Eunuch Li is outside.”
Eh? Dad wants to give me a present? I wonder what it is.
“Let him in!” Hong Xiaobao walked towards the entrance.
Very quickly, Eunuch Li who was responsible for delivering the package smiled and said, “Your Highness, His Majesty certainly treats you well! Once he knew that you bought this building, he immediately bought every building around this area. The leases are here!”
Everyone looked like this upon hearing what Eunuch Li said:（⊙o⊙）!