AST 1528 - Everyone Needs Kinship, Friendship, and Romantic Relationships
Qin Qing and Qin Baifo were stunned. Qing Shui was surprisingly skilled in drawing. Furthermore, it had been a portrait drawing—his own daughter’s portrait drawing. Without realizing, Qin Baifo turned a cheeky smile towards Qin Qing.
Qin Qing could feel her father’s eyes on her, and she was just as shocked. She hadn’t expected a man to be able to draw a portrait of her with such realism. Most importantly, Qing Shui had only taken a few glimpses of her as he was drawing. With those glances alone, he was able to commit her to memory.
With her father’s eyes on her, her face was rigid. Even though Qing Shui and Qin Qing didn’t have much going on between them, there was still a sense of guilt brewing in her, or perhaps it’d have been more accurate to describe the sensation as peculiar.
At the very end, Qing Shui decorated the side of the portrait with the words, ‘Remarkable Beauty’.
There wasn’t much flamboyance within the handwriting of those words. In contrast, there was a sense of neutrality, elegant yet delicate at the same time. It was impressive, and even Qin Baifo had thought that the writing was beautiful.
Qing Shui put down the brush and lifted his head to meet a pair of starry eyes, but the other looked away in fluster at that moment. He chuckled, “Uncle, how’s my drawing?”
Qing Shui realized that Qin Baifo was an easy man to get along with. Moreover, Qing Shui was serious about courting Qin Qing. This wasn’t like his previous life where it would have been amoral to have relations with other women once you were attached and likewise, you couldn’t be open about them.
He didn’t have such worries here, Qing Shui could have a peace of mind when courting her.
“Good, it’s great. You’re not bad at all, I like you.”
Qin Baifo wasn’t lying. For a person like Qing Shui, with his immense strength as well as proficiency in both drawing and calligraphy, he must not be as simple as he seemed. Qin Baifo had heard from his daughter that Qing Shui was a physician too, and the fact that she dared bring up this status of his must mean that it existed on official papers.
Still, none of these were as important as the fact that his daughter was the one who brought Qing Shui here. He knew that his daughter had high standards, to the point where even privileged men of Great Qin Dynasty were nothing more than trash in her eyes. There were few who were decent and even good-looking, however, compared to his daughter, they were eventually still worlds apart.
Qin King Manor was already an eminent family, and Qin Qing had been so outstanding. The men in the Main Continent were still chauvinistic, just like how men from his previous life didn’t favor ladies who were taller than them, or richer, or stronger…
The world of the Nine Continents was the same. Apart from the point that Qin Qing didn’t take a liking to them, even if she did, then a marriage between them would be as though the man was marrying into Qin King Manor. In front of this woman, they would always feel inferior, always feeling as though they didn’t have much say. They wouldn’t even think about being able to have a concubine or flirt with other women.
It wasn’t like Qin Baifo was insistent on marrying his daughter off. However, even after so many years, being as outstanding as she was, his daughter hadn’t even given it a single thought. Her mother had passed away too early, and as an old man, he wasn’t the best candidate to bring it up to her.
He was already a distinguished figure in the Great Qin Dynasty, but what was concealed underneath was even more terrifying. He truly felt it by now and didn’t probe about many issues, but his daughter’s status was still worrying. He was afraid that if he dragged it out any longer, then his daughter would have no desires left to marry.
Being by yourself is lonely. While one is alive, there would be a need for kinship, romantic relationships, and friendship; a lack of either would be a regret, and either would make you feel alone.
Although she didn’t have many friends, Qin Qing still did have a small company of them. Her kinship with her siblings was also well, and this pleased Qin Baifo. It was only in romance where she seemed to come up blank.
His other children all had their own kids and had matured into adults. It was the first time he had seen his daughter bring home a man and a good-looking one at that. It had been a long time since he felt this happy.
This happiness grew as he spent more time with the young man and realized how extraordinary he was. He knew the person his daughter had chosen would definitely be breathtakingly capable in their generation.
Qing Shui met three men of Qin Clan by now, and each of them had shown their support in his courting of Qin Qing. He was surprised that even her father was showing his approval for it.
“Rest assured, Uncle. I’ll make Sister Qing happy no matter what; regardless of who it is, I won’t let anyone bully her.” Qing Shui said lightly with a grin.
Qin Baifo broke into a delighted smile. “Good, that’s great! Qing’er, go inform the others to gather for a reunion meal today. Let everyone have a chance to know Qing Shui.”
“Father, there’s no need for that. It’s not what you think.” Qin Qing didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.
“I know, but we were able to hit it off with Qing Shui, so why don’t we let everyone else meet him?” Qin Baifo didn’t seem too convinced by Qin Qing’s words; he could tell that much just by observing. At least now, he still held a glimmer of hope that Qing Shui and his daughter would get together in the end.
With a glare at Qing Shui, Qin Qing made her move first. Qin Baifo gestured for Qing Shui to take a seat, then served a pot of tea. Qing Shui promptly took it over and poured them a cup.
“Qing Shui, do you really fancy Qing’er?” Qin Baifo asked softly when there was no one else around.
“Yes, I would do anything for her. If she’s in any danger, I would save her even if it costs my life. Perhaps it’s foolish, but I don’t feel like I would want to make any other choice.” Qing Shui said honestly, with a shake of his head.
“Good. Men should be foolish at times, and courageous. I’m really fond of you.” Qin Baifo smiled before sipping on his tea.
“Actually, Uncle, I’m pretty strong. Not just anyone would be able to hurt me.”
“You’re the most outstanding young man I’ve ever met. You and Qing’er will be compatible together. Oh, right, and you’re still endowed with medical skills?” Qin Baifo asked with interests.
“Yes, a little!” Qing Shui replied humbly.
“Being modest is a good thing, but it isn’t good to go overboard with it.” Qin Baifo smiled.
“Mmh, my medical skills are exceptional and unparalleled…”
“Pfftt, Elder Sister, is that him? He’s interesting!” At that moment, a voice chimed through the room and 10 other people who walked in.
There were 4 ladies and 6 men among them. Among the 4 ladies, there was Qin Qing and the lady who made the comment earlier, as well as 2 other graceful, married women.
Among the 6 men, Qing Shui recognized Qin Chuan and Qin Shan, and from the looks of it, it seems like they were all Qin Baifo’s wives and children!
Looking towards the lady who laughed earlier, she looked like she was in her 20s, and younger than Qin Qing. Even so, she was also good looking, her bright eyes had a glint of wittiness to them. Her figure was slender, obvious that she had developed well, and she seemed cheerful in personality.
Qin Qing naturally introduced them again. These were Qin Baifo’s 8 children and the 2 women were his wives. Qing Shui was already told that Qin Qing’s birth mother had passed away.
The lady who laughed was called Qin Ying. She was the youngest in Qin Qing’s generation, and among their siblings, they were the only 2 ladies. In Qin King Manor, the daughters were more pampered than the sons.
Qing Shui took out a few gifts for each of them that he had prepared beforehand. Seeing Qing Shui with this gesture, Qin Qing was inwardly happy but she didn’t express it.
“Wow, Brother Shui’s drawing is magnificent. Can you draw one of me too?” Qin Ying observed the portrait of Qin Qing and asked in glee.
“Sure, but it might not be as good as this.”
“Why not? Why is my sister’s portrait so well drawn?” Qin Ying blinked in curiosity.
“I could vividly picture your sister even with my eyes shut. It was like there’s an invisible force guiding me as I drew. This is only our first meeting so why don’t you wait a while before I draw you a portrait?” Even though his words were exaggerated, there was still an inkling of truth.
“Oh, I understand, so you like my sister!” Qin Ying exclaimed loudly, and Qing Shui thought that she must have done so deliberately.
They had lunch together. None of the women from Qin Chuan’s generation, as well as the other four generations, came. They were planning to come by only in the afternoon.
Qin Qing was an exceptional case in the Qin King Manor; since she had brought a man home, then others would approve of her choice accordingly. The relationship between the brothers in Qin King Manor was cordial, and Qing Shui liked the feeling very much.
When afternoon came around, a few dozen young people came. They were even younger than Qin Ying, some were even underaged. There were 5 women; they were the women of Qin Chuan and the others, as well as the primary wife.
These women were all beautiful and the gifts Qing Shui gave were to help them in retaining their youthful looks. For the kids, there were toys and snacks, and for Qin Chuan and the others, he gave medicinal pills that would help increase cultivation…
Gifts were the best at closing the distance in relationships. It was the intention and thought behind the gifts that counted, not just about giving things away.
“Oh right, Sister Qing. You mentioned about an elderly who needs my help. Who’s that?”
“Oh, it’s my grandfather. Let’s go, I’ll bring you to meet him.” Qin Qing laughed. With a wave, they both bid their farewells to the others.
“Sister Qing, your family members are really friendly!” Qing Shui chuckled.
Qin Qing was gloomy about it; she hadn’t expected it to be this way. It was as if they had trouble marrying her off. With a huff, she said, “Don’t assume that I like you just because my family does.”
“Sister Qing, you look beautiful even when you’re angry!”
Qin Qing knew better than to respond; she would hardly gain an edge bantering with this man.
In no time at all, the two of them stopped by an exquisite courtyard. It was tranquil, as though it was far away from the hubbub of the city. It seemed isolated here; there’s was a river to its side and looked more like a resort.
There weren’t many people that passed by here and there weren’t many pedestrians either. The area was mostly occupied by elderly who preferred serenity. The river here wasn’t big, but it was still at least a few meters in width. You could see people fishing by the shore…
Qin Qing walked into a small courtyard not far from the river. There were huge Weeping Willows in front of it. They were thick in circumference; even with a few people, it may not be enough to link their arms to wrap around one of them.
A gentle breeze blew, and Qing Shui thought the place seemed decent. Entering the courtyard, he saw a man laying on a deck chair with his eyes closed.
The old man wasn’t that tall in stature, but he still felt like a huge monster, a snoozing lion of sorts. It was the spiritual conflict at work.
“Little Qing’er is back!” A benevolent voice sounded and the old man opened his eyes, smiling at Qin Qing.
When Qing Shui saw the old man, like the sea, he was overwhelmed by a profound feeling. The old man was unfathomable but after a quick look at him, Qing Shui knew that he wasn’t sick. Instead, Qing Shui realized that the old man was dying.
Qin Qing introduced Qing Shui to the old man who was just as friendly, but not to the extent of Qin Baifo and the rest.
“Grandfather Qin! How do you do?” Qing Shui greeted with a smile.
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