The next morning, Ren Baqian was woken up by a knocking on the door. He pushed open the door and was greeted by a delicate face. Qing Yuan stood outside his door. Not far away, there were two guards.
She was still teasing Tiantian and Gungun, which were rolling about on the floor.
"Greetings, Miss Qing Yuan," Ren Baqian cupped his fists and greeted Qing Yuan.
He did not know how to address her.
After all, the ancient Chinese imperial palaces were usually filled with eunuchs and they were much easier for one to address. Those Chinese movies and television series usually did not mention how to address a palace maid.
He reckoned that Qing Yuan and Hong Yuan must have ranks and that theirs would definitely be higher than his.
As such, he decided to just call Qing Yuan "Miss".
Even if he addressed her wrongly, he was sure that she would not cause any trouble for him.
Qing Yuan stood up and smiled. She was rather familiar with Ren Baqian; after all, she saw him every day. Furthermore, as the trusted aide of the empress, she roughly knew what the empress was thinking. She knew Ren Baqian would be highly valued in the future.
After all, he knew a lot of things and he spoke well. He was a talent.
"Storyteller Ren, where are the things that you are going to give Her Majesty?" Qing Yuan chuckled.
Ren Baqian quickly turned around and went back into his house. Then, he came out with a bag in his hand and passed it to Qing Yuan. At the same time, he passed her another small bag that weighed around half a catty.
"Everything is in this bag. Other than the milk candies, there are some chocolates as well. These are prepared for Her Majesty with utmost care. As for this small bag, it is for Miss Qing Yuan and Miss Hong Yuan," Ren Baqian said.
The small bag was prepared by him not too long ago. Fortunately, there were some empty bags in the house.
He reckoned that Qing Yuan and Hong Yuan would not need any money given their status. Neither palace maids nor female officials had as much enthusiasm to make money as eunuchs. Especially considering Qing Yuan's and Hong Yuan's status, Ren Baqian, therefore, decided to give them some White Rabbit Creamy Candies. So far, this thing had never failed as an expedient in the palace.
Qing Yuan's eyes curled up as she replied, "No wonder Her Majesty values you so much, you're indeed a very clever individual."
"Thank you, you have flattered me too much," Ren Baqian cupped his fists and replied.
"I shall not disturb you any further. Her Majesty is still waiting for me in the palace." Qing Yuan waved the small bag in front of Ren Baqian and turned around to leave.
After walking for some distance, she passed the bag that was meant for the empress to one of the two guards. Then, she placed her hands behind her back while holding the small bag and left the beast park.
Ren Baqian raised his head and looked at the sky. He reckoned that it must be around seven in the morning.
Suddenly, Ren Baqian felt that he should bring a watch over to this world. With a watch, he could at least check the time. If he wanted to sell this thing, he could sell it for a lot of money. However, it would not be easy to come up with an excuse about the source of the watch. Even though the empress knew something about him, he still could not afford to get suspected by other people.
It was indeed impossible to keep secrets from the empress. After all, she was the ruler of a nation. She was also the number seven most powerful expert in this world. Her magnanimity was extraordinary and peerless. Other people would not have the same degree of magnanimity as her. If someone had the intention to find out his secret, he would be in deep trouble.
He could also bring the blueprint of a clock to this world and get someone to make it. Even though the mechanisms of a watch were slightly complicated, they wasn't hard to make.
He could make two watches, one for himself and one for the empress.
He went to the kitchen to see if there was any food. When he saw there was some vegetable soup, he scooped a bowl of it for himself. He felt full after drinking it with some dried food. Then, he changed to a set of new clothes and headed towards the Honglu Bureau with Teng Hulu and Tie Dao.
The Honglu Bureau was located in Zhulian District. It was near to Beihong District.
Along the way, Ren Baqian and his counterparts did not encounter any fights. However, when they reached Zhulian District, they saw a few guards from the public order bureau arresting a few men that had swollen faces and bleeding noses.
One of the guards, who looked like a unit leader, saw Ren Baqian and momentarily became stunned. After examining Ren Baqian carefully, he gestured to the other guards. Following which, he walked towards Ren Baqian with his counterparts and asked, "Are you Ren Baqian?"
Ren Baqian nodded his head and smiled weakly.
He knew for sure this man was one of the eight persons that Caretaker Shi beat up.
"You are the one that gave that thing to Shi Wanshan that bastard?" The burly man's face turned unfriendly in an instant.
"It was been snatched from me, I'm innocent" Ren Baqian explained helplessly.
"So does your secret sect treasure still work? Lend it to me, otherwise, I will draw circle with you," the burly man yelled.
Ren Baqian felt Teng Hulu and Tie Dao taking one step forward behind his back.
He felt very satisfied. It was worth to treat these two lads well.So long as they could step forward to protect him when he was in trouble, he was satisfied.
He turned around and waved his hand.
"Right now, I am the Honglu Deputy. I can reject your challenge, right?" Ren Baqian chuckled. According to his understanding, the rank of Honglu Deputy should be higher than this man's.
If his rank was higher than the other party's, he could reject his or her challenge.
He himself was "bullied" by the empress. As for Caretaker Shi, he enjoyed a good relationship with him. After all, he couldn't always use his rank to "bully" people.
"Is it true? Why didn't Shi Wanshanthat bastardmention it? Aren't you from the beast park?" The burly man looked puzzled.
"I am on my way to report to the Honglu Bureau," Ren Baqian cupped his fists and replied.
"You're the first foreigner to undertake a Dayao official position. Forget it, your rank is higher than mine." The burly man smiled at Ren Baqian, looking as though he was unconcerned. Then, he waved his hand at Ren Baqian and left.
Ren Baqian looked at his back view and shook his head.
This man wasn't a bad individual. Just like all the other aboriginal men he had encountered in the past, he was vulgar and boorish.
However, from the burly man's attitude, Ren Baqian could tell that he himself would have an extremely tough life in Dayao if he did not have an official position. Aboriginal people would not be friendly with foreigners at all.
If he didn't have an official position, it would be impossible for him to lead the life of a rich person in peace. He could go to other nations, but the situation would still be the same.
Therefore, it was better for him to continue clinging on to the empress's thighs.
Given his experience in the imperial palace and in the beast park, he knew after he took up an official position or a task, Dayao people began to treat him like their own. Be it Caretaker Shi, the other caretakers, the odd-job workers, or their family members, they similarly behaved this way.
Some of the people he encountered in the palace were like them as well.
"Let's go." Ren Baqian signaled to Teng Hulu and Tie Dao.
Outside the Honglu Bureau, there was a huge courtyard. Within it there were several tall and huge buildings. From the entrance, one could see a path that passed through the first row of buildings all the way to the back of the compound.
There were two huge men at the entrance. Their clothes were different from the imperial guards' or the public order bureau's guards'.
The shirts they wore were sleeveless, revealing their thick and muscular arms.
The faces of the two men were filled with a murderous aura, looking as though the words "Do Not Enter!" were written on them.
If he did not know what this place was, he might think he was coming to a prison.
A normal foreign affairs office would typically employ friendly employees that communicate well with people, right?
Dayao was different. The bureau intentionally put two vicious-looking fiends at its entrance, hoping that they could scare away all visitors. They were indeed a qipa placed at the entrance of the foreign affairs office.
["(qp)" means exotic flower in English. It also refers to strange actions that average people find to be out of the norm and perhaps hard to understand. Plus, the word adds a taste of ridicule and irony and can be used as both a noun and as an adjective.]
"This is the Honglu Bureau, what's the matter?" One of them stopped Ren Baqian with a fierce look on his face.
"I am here to find Judicial Officer Gu. Can you tell him Ren Baqian is here to report to him?" Ren Baqian said.
"Report?" The man examined Ren Baqian with suspicion and continued, "Hold on."
The other person turned around and entered the courtyard.
Ren Baqian felt that he should have worn his official robe. He thought there was no need for him to wear it as he was going to the Honglu Bureau. He did not expect to encounter troubles everywhere he went. In the past when he was walking in the city, he did not realize troubles were following him wherever he went. Today, he finally realized it.
After a while, the person returned and said, "Go in, Sir Gu is waiting for you."
"Thank you so much," Ren Baqian cupped his fists and replied. Following which, he led Teng Hulu and Tie Dao into the bureau.