The Little First Grand Secretary in My House

2020-04-24 09:46:20
Chapter 12

Yeah, it was not a big deal to lose, she earned money for him to read. Wasn’t the plan at first?! 

With such a thought, Zhao’er suddenly got it through and said, "Then you are well prepared, you can win if you can win, don't be afraid if you can't win, at worst your sister, I, earn money for you to read."

Zhao’er had never been a person with a character of over-care. She turned and see that the cow shit in the house had not been cleaned, so she went to find a brush to clean the bed first, after that she went out to sweep the floor with the broom and the dustpan.

There was a clucking of chickens outside, but it was Mrs. Sun who killed the chicken and let the chicken run away.

Xue Tingxiang looked out of the window and saw that the chicken was running around the yard with its neck bleeding, and Mrs. Sun was chasing after the chicken with an uncollected expression on her face.

Seeing that it was awkward, Mrs. Zhao came out of the house and said something. Mrs. Sun was more anxious and she knew that she had lost face in front of the clan leader, but the chicken had wings and she had no wings. It was not until the chicken was out of strength that Mrs. Sun grabbed it and scolded it, "Even you keep on running, you are still destined to be a dish in the pot, where are you going to?"

Xue Tingxiang stopped watching withdrew his gaze.

He knew why his eldest uncle was so generous to propose the competition between Xue Juncai and him, because if there was no accident, Xue Juncai would win this game.

In that dream, he had suffered such a loss, but instead of competing with Xue Juncai, it was Zhao’er who managed to get the money and sent him to Qinghe School. At that time, he was too stupid to blame his unsuccessful blame on fate, thinking that it was not because he was not good, but because everyone did not give him a chance.

When he first entered Qinghe School, he was full of ambitions. He thought he would be better than Xue Juncai and proved that he was the most outstanding person in the Xue family, but he was hit bitterly by reality. He was so naive that it was also at that time he realized the eldest uncle’s sinister intentions. He did teach him to read, and he did ‘read’ a lot of books, but he just read and did not understand the meaning of scripture.

He knew later that after being taught to read and write as a schoolchildren, reading would be regarded as the basis.

Start learning books such as "Three-Character Classic", "Chinese Surnames", "The Thousand-Character Classic", then "Thousand Poets", "Instructions for Preschool Education", "Actient Book" and so on. After reading these, you could enter the university and began to read The Four Books.

And in this stage, the teacher would not teach the scripture, which meant children just need rote memory with understanding the meaning of the words instead of the scriptures. Because people at that time used to the thought that when children learned something, it didn’t matter if they could understand, they just need to remember, and they would understand the meaning the more and the longer they read.

This was the so-called reading a thousand times, and its meaning was self-explanatory.

When you could recite all of these books, and you could learn to explain the classics and make an essay, then it would be twice the result with half the effort for you. This time-saving, labor-saving and effective teaching model was popular in the whole Daxi, it involved from highborn to low-level social studies and village studies. It was especially popular in the private schools because it was not realistic for one teacher to teach a few or even dozens of people to explain the scriptures.

But some family with a profound foundation would never teach their children like this. Because this teaching model emphasized rote memorization blindly by ignoring the truth of the natural principle.

This was an overall analysis of the pros and cons later when 'He' saw from the position of the first Grand Secretary.

But at that time, he entered the school, he did not know about exegesis because the eldest uncle procrastinated to explain the meaning of the scriptures for him. Therefore, when he first entered the school, the teacher asked him whether he had read about interpreting classics, he said yes, but interpreted the classics into a mess. Therefore, he was scolded by the teacher as stupid as a goose and was squeezed out and ridiculed by his classmates.

But now, it seemed that the eldest uncle also knew about his shortcomings, and he deliberately proposed this competition. Uncle was confident and he was expected to lose. 

Unfortunately, something happened.

Because there was a visitor at home, Grandpa Xue and Xue Qingshan were accompanying the guest. Everyone was busy.

After the main hall was served, the kitchen here started to cook lunch for others.

During the period, Xue Tao’er was asked to prepare the wine. There were wine and meat on the seats in the hall, men drank with each other and no one could see what was happening between them at all in usual time. In particular, clan leader Xue and village head Zheng, the two of them drank very intimately and both drank too much in the end.

"Okay, that’s okay, we’ll arrive home soon." Clan leader Xue waved his hand. 

They started to tidy up the table after all the people were sent out of the courtyard. Mrs. Zhao was trying to take away the leftover meat dishes but was stopped by Grandpa Xue, saying that he was going to give extra food to everyone. It was normal for those countrymen who were not rich to take the leftovers by the noble guests.

The adults were okay, Shuangzi and Maodan enjoyed the leftovers very much.

Zhao’er planned to eat back to the house, but she was stopped by Xue Tingxiang. They two didn’t say anything as before but just bowing their heads and eating.

Xue Juncai looked at Xue Tingxiang disdainfully.

Just now he was eating together with Xue Qingshan and enjoyed the delicious food. Now he felt sarcastic when he saw Xue Tingxiang could only eat some leftovers.

He remembered everything his father had told him before. Xue Gouzi couldn't win him.

Thinking in his heart, he withdrew his gaze and said to Grandpa Xue, who was lying on Bed, "Grandpa, I went back to the house to read.”

Grandpa Xue nodded, and he had drunk too much before, and now he was smoking on the bed.

"Have some more, Gou’er. Your elder brother is still waiting for you to win me in five days." Xue Juncai suddenly said when he passed by Xue Tingxiang.

Zhao’er stood up immediately and stared at him, "Can you speak? You’ve been reading blindly for years."

Xue Juncai didn't expect that Zhao’er wouldn't give him face. He held back with his gentle face flushed by no reason when he glanced at Zhao’er.

Grandpa Xue shouted, "Go back to your house, Juncai!" 

Mrs. Zhou also stood up to persuade Zhao’er, and it came to an end finally.

After the meal, the two returned to the two-bedroom house, Zhao’er was still angry, "Do not be angry, Gou’er, I will have a life with you and separate with them after I earned money, and we will not live together with them.”

Xue Tingxiang felt a little moved, but at the same time he was helpless, "You call me Gou’er again."

Zhao’er screamed and smiled, "I forgot, I won't do that again."

Naturally, he couldn't be angry with her, and then Zhao’er took the two clothes that he changed yesterday and went out to wash. Xue Tingxiang took out the book "Instructions for Preschool Education" again.

Looking at this book, which was transcribed in the worst bamboo paper, and the footer had been curled, Xue Tingxiang felt a little worried. He didn't want to read, but he had to listen to Zhao’er that he should read more now, because the more he read, the more confident he could win Xue Juncai. 

She did not realize this book was different from that book. It was useless to read this one alone, but he would not tell her about it.

He took the bamboo paper that Zhao’er bought him from the Bed cabinet. This most inferior bamboo paper was worth forty-one cents. It was even reluctant to practice calligraphy with such ‘expensive’ paper. He has always treasured it very much that he reluctant to use it. He would write on the sand if he could, or he would write with water on the bookcase if he could not use the sand.

Xue Tingxiang sighed when touching such a pile of yellow bamboo paper.

The paper used by ‘Xue Tingxiang’ was usually the first-rate sincere paper. But now he felt a little bit of disgust on what he used to be treasured.

He spread the paper on the table, stacked a few sheets, and then cut it into volumes with a bamboo knife. Then he left some extra space for the seams and cut a thick stack. After that, he found the missing inkstone, and the ingot, which had been reduced to a scrap of ink. 

These are all the treasures he usually did not use, but Xue Tingxiang has no such feeling at all today. He added water to the inkstone and held the ink ingot to grind the ink. No one knew what he was thinking when he was grinding.

Finishing the ink polishing, he moistened and cleaned the already-bald brush in a water bowl, and then started to write something on the paper with enough ink.

After writing a few words, he suddenly put down the pen, lifted the paper and looked at it, and suddenly crumpled it.

The handwriting was neat, he usually saved paper and ink, but his handwriting was still good because of hard practice for years, somehow, he did not feel satisfied with it. 

He closed his eyes slowly, gazed for a while, and opened again. There was no one in the house at this time. If there has, someone could see a glimmer of light flashing in Xue Tingxiang's eyes. At the same time, he grasped the pen quickly and steadily and wrote a series of small characters on the paper as if by the help of God. 

These small characters suddenly became the Yan Zhenqing style , but became the Guangeti calligraphy, and suddenly became the thin gold style. At first, they were tangible and boneless, but as they were written they changed their taste.

The Yan Zhenqing style was square and dense, with strong pen power, straight and open full of vigor. The Guangeti calligraphy was physically powerful and grace, just like the general engraving. While the thin gold style, looked like the gold hook iron painting, full of pride, and the strokes were as sharp as the broken gold and jade.

These three characters represented the life of 'Xue Tingxiang', from the Yan Zhenqing style learned at the beginning of admission, to Guangeti calligraphy that was painstakingly studied for the examination, and then to the thin gold style of the official residence.

He wrote like this, completely forgetting himself. During this period, Zhao’er came in and sat down on the edge of the Bed without disturbing him.

It didn’t know how long it was, he suddenly took a long breath and put down the pen. 

He wrote two whole pieces of paper.

By this time, Xue Tingxiang had to admit that the magic of heaven was just a dream. He possessed some of the things he had in his dream unexpectedly.

Since the dream appeared, Xue Tingxiang kept on thinking about why he had such a dream. Now he understood that perhaps it just wanted to make up for all the dissatisfaction for him in his dream.

With everything of the ‘him’ in his dream, he suddenly had ambitions and a wave of pride and agitation surging in his heart.

“You must be tired, have some water.”

Xue Tingxiang took the water from Zhao’er gulped down, which was especially sweet. 

He then looked down what he had written, and he had spent two large sheets of bamboo paper. It`s probably because Zhao'er stood by his side, he suddenly remembered that she usually lived frugally to buy paper for him. He felt a little bit distressed and guilty immediately. He glanced at her and whispered, "I wrote so much."

How could Zhao'er not understand his thoughts, she smiled and said, "Not much, not much, only two. The paper is for use, haven't I told you not to save paper. We can buy it after use up. "

"I want to transcribe the book, so I try the words first to avoid wasting the paper."

"What book do you want to transcribe? Can the book be transcribed, isn't it needed to buy?" Zhao’er was puzzled.

Xue Tingxiang sighed in his heart, really felt that he was very stupid before, he would rather borrow the eldest uncle's book every time, or rote learning hard, and never thought of copying books.

An industry of transcribing books appeared since books sold in the bookstores nowadays had very few counter-marks and were very expensive. In that case, it could not only help some poor scholars get some money in exchange but also beneficial those who want to buy books but struggling to afford it.

Of course, this transcription was not easy to do, it required extremely well handwriting.

Xue Tingxiang boasted that his handwriting was not bad. At that time, many people asked for his calligraphy. Why couldn’t he transcribe by himself since he needed books now?

The most important was--

He glanced at Zhao’er.

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