After two hours had passed, Han Li left the secret room with Qin Yan, once again returning to his country bumpkin appearance.
Having returned to the guest room, the Qin Clan Master looked at his third wife and immediately ordered them to arrange a clean room in the back of the residence as Honorable Nephew Han would be staying with them for an extended time.
The surface reason was plain. As his Senior, the lord wanted to cultivate this Junior and pay back the kindness that the boy’s elders had bestowed upon him.
When the third wife saw this, her jaw dropped, but she didn’t say any words of opposition!
When the exceedingly shrewd woman clearly heard this, she knew that Qin Yan already made his decision and wouldn’t change his mind. Furthermore, she could perceive that this Honorable Nephew Han had something suspicious going on with her lord husband.
But since Qin Yan didn’t tell any of the particulars, she naturally wouldn’t perform any actions that would provoke disfavor.
However, she had guessed with a bit of wild imagination that since he was so serious toward this Honorable Nephew Han, it was possible that when Qin Yan was young, he had left an illegitimate child while he was out fondling flowers and trampling grass. How else could he turn so pale from reading the letter and be so cordial right after?
The more the lively-minded third wife thought of this, the greater she felt this to be true. She felt a bit unhappy, but she appeared as if nothing happened and acted increasingly familiar toward Han Li.
As such, under Lord Qin’s repeated suggestions, Han Li followed Qin Ping to see his residence until he was fully satisfied.
This time, Qin Ping’s expression wasn’t as rigid as before. Instead, his face wore a smile as he continuously addressed him as “Young Master Han”. He had selectively forgotten his previously cold behavior.
Although Han Li appeared overwhelmed by a superior’s favor, he secretly sighed to this mortal servant. His art of changing in the direction of the blowing wind was truly superb. He was unexpectedly able to switch from arrogance to deference without the slightest appearance of embarrassment.
He didn’t know whether to say that his face was thick-skinned or if he was long accustomed to such events.
Soon after Qin Ping brought Han Li on a small path to the back of the residence. They arrived at a peaceful three-room courtyard.
The exquisite and refined surroundings were exceptionally peaceful, causing Han Li to inwardly nod his head; it was very much to his liking.
It seems this Qin Yan had gone through quite a bit of thought to give him such a suitable dwelling.
“Young Master Han, this is your residence! This is the best courtyard within the Qin Residence. If someone were not the lord’s valued guests, they basically wouldn’t be allowed to live here!” After Qin Ping let Han Li into the courtyard, he fawningly gave Han Li an explanation.
Han Li scratched his head and naively grinned. He repeatedly giggled as if he didn’t know what to say.
With great tact, Qin Ping switched to a different subject, “Young Master Han hasn’t eaten dinner yet, no? This servant will go the kitchen and bring you some food. Please wait for a moment!”
With that said, Qin Ping respectfully withdrew from the courtyard and left.
As Han Li saw this person gradually grow farther, he faintly smiled and entered the rooms.
The room’s arrangements greatly matched the environment, each piece of furniture being uniquely elegant.
After he went through it once through, Han Li found it increasingly agreeable. He couldn’t help but think of who arranged the place like this.
That Qin Ping had moved quite quickly! Not long after, a female servant arrived with a large bamboo tray holding food.
Smelling the fragrant scent of food, Han Li, who had fasted for several years, felt a bit ravenous and impolitely swept clear the several delicate dishes with a bowl of rice.
In the end, Qin Ping saw what remained of the meal and naturally found it a bit funny. But his appearance still remained respectful as he invited Han Li to the hall. Lord Qin wanted to introduce Han Li to the members of the Qin Residence.
When Han Li arrived at the guest hall for the second time, it wasn’t just Qin Yan and the Third Madam. There were also twenty to thirty men and women sitting and standing about.
When Qin Yan called out Han Li to sit beside him with great familiarity, a few of the older members within the hall were surprised, but the others didn’t react. The young madams and lords of the Qin Clan, however, were unable to keep their calm. The more favored young master immediately asked with dissatisfaction:
“Grandfather, who is this brother? Us brothers and sisters have never seen him before; could you have called us here because of this person?”
Qin Yan naturally heard the unhappiness in his grandson’s voice, but he didn’t give him any face, instead glaring at him before saying coldly:
“Get back! Do you have the right to speak in this place? What ‘this person’, ‘that person’! This is Han Li, my Honorable Nephew Han. His elder has bestowed our Qin clan with great favor during a time of life and death. You are forbidden from being disrespectful to him!”
This sentence from Qin Yan instantly caused everyone in the room apart from his third wife to cause a commotion.
Various conjectures and curious gazes simultaneously landed on Han Li, who wore a perfect unsettled appearance, shifting around a few times as if needles were being poked into his rear.
As for the Qin Clan’s young master, he silently retreated, his face alternating between frightened red and embarrassed red.
He absolutely did not expect that Qin Yan, who normally doted on him, would now speak so mercilessly towards him. This caused him to lose a lot of face in front of so many brothers and sisters!
Because of this matter, this young master naturally would not have any goodwill towards Han Li! Of course, he was not so naive that he would make any ill-intentioned moves towards Han Li, especially after Qin Yan had given such orders.
After all, it seemed like this country bumpkin had a very high standing in his grandfather’s heart. He didn’t wish to lose Qin Yan’s favor because of this matter.
With this person set as an example, other people naturally would not make any hostile movements. Instead, many people revealed kind appearances after meeting Han Li’s gaze.
At this time, Qin Yan pointed out and introduced all the people in the room to Han Li with a smile:
“This is my eldest son Qin Zhi, who is currently helping me organize all of the business in Yuejing. He has a pretty good head on him. This is my second son......”
Even as Han Li pretended to wildly nod his head, he secretly memorized every Qin Clan member that Qin Yan introduced; after all, these people were the ones that he needed to protect!
However, this elderly Lord Qin could really procreate; in total, he had five sons and three daughters, and he even had quite a few grandsons and granddaughters.
In their midst, the eldest and second son all seemed to be around thirty years old and even had families. The one who had taken the initiative to ask a question was the eldest son’s second son.
But what was funny was that Qin Yan’s youngest fifth son was only five or six years old, a little child who could only suck his thumb.
When Han Li thought about that sixteen or seventeen year-old youth being forced to call this child with a drippy nose “Fifth Uncle”, he felt that it was quite comical.
As for Qin Yan’s wives, apart from the third wife he had met earlier in the morning, there was another forty year-old or so second wife, as well as seven or eight relatively young concubines.
Qin Yan’s first wife was not in the hall; at the moment, it was said that she was praying to Buddha and abstaining from eating meat. She would no longer come out to see anyone.
Apart from these people, there were two forty year-old or so males; naturally, they were Qin Yan’s second and third younger brothers.
They were each responsible for a portion of the Qin Clan’s business and could be considered the more important members of the Qin Clan. Of course, they likewise had a few sons and daughters in the room, but Han Li only memorized these people’s names, too lazy to pay them any further attention.
After all, the energy he possessed as one person was limited; he could only focus on protecting the people Qin Yan introduced in this room.
“Yi! Where is Young Madam Biao?”
When Qin Yan introduced all the people inside the room once, he suddenly discovered that they were missing a person; he couldn’t help but ask this to his third wife sitting beside him.
“Lord, Young Miss Biao felt that as a widow, it would not be too appropriate for her to meet any outsiders, and thus she didn’t come! Should I go and call for her?” the third wife softly asked. A hesitant expression appeared on her face.
“Oh.” Qin Yan thought for a moment before continuing, “Don’t worry about it, Martial Nephew Han is not an outsider; it’s best if she comes and sees him!”
“Yes, my lord!”
“Little Lian, go quickly and call for the Young Miss Biao; tell her that the lord asked for her to come!”
The third wife indifferently commanded a young maid standing behind her.
“Yes, Madam.” This little maidservant who previously guided Han Li immediately and quickly ran out through a side door with small steps.
At this time, Qin Yan turned his head around and said in a low voice to Han Li:
“There’s one more person who didn’t come, a young woman whom my first wife saved seven or eight years ago while she was visiting her parents.”
“This woman is extremely pitiful. Not only did she lose her memory because she hit her head, her body was covered with wounds. My wife’s character is pretty good, so after treating her and seeing that the girl had no place to go, she had one of her brothers take her in as an adopted daughter, at least providing her with some shelter!”
“However, this woman truly is unlucky. Although she was married to a groom picked by her adoptive father, she was only married for three days before her spouse actually slipped and fell into a river because he was too drunk. It’s reasonable to say that such a young woman would naturally choose to remarry, but this woman actually has the temperament to die chaste and decided to live as a widow for the husband whom she only lived for three days with. This is a hot topic around here, but it has given my wife’s clan a great amount of face!”
“Afterwards, her adoptive father passed away due to sickness. My wife, seeing that the truly pitiful young lady was watching over an empty house all alone, decided to bring her over here to accompany her. In passing, she would also ease this woman’s anxiety!”
As Qin Yan spoke, he sighed incessantly!