The next day, the father and son pair invited Xu Guoqing to the tea house Jing Ming Xuan to discuss publishing [Stories About The Ming Dynasty].
Naturally, they couldn't sit in the main lobby so the three of them packed into a private room and asked the waiter to bring out the tea set for some Tieguanyin tea. Two slender beautiful waiters walked in.
One carried the tea set to a square table in the middle of the room, while the other held a kettle and a small red clay stove and placed them on a round wooden pier beside the table.
The small red clay stove was long and about five or six inches high, the charcoal in the stove had been ignited and it was very clear that the stove was delicately made.
The tea set was also very elegant. There was a Yixing - Purple Sand teapot, the pot about the size of a fist and in addition to that there were six small tea cups made of ancient jade. The six tea cups were evenly distributed on all sides. They were as white as snow and thin as paper. Picking them up, it felt like with the slightest effort, they could be easily crushed.
Although the red clay stove was very small, it's fire was very strong and in a flash, the water in the kettle had boiled. After the water was boiled, one of the waiters picked up the kettle, while the other waiter introduced: "The water used for making our tea is from the natural springs of Mount Yunlong. The calligrapher Su Shi once said,"Living water must be cooked by live fire", which is why we use a live stove to boil the mountain spring water."
After the water boiled, the three sent out the waiters although you could have the waiters make the tea, customers could also do it themselves.
Of course, they had to be members of the teahouse and well-experienced in making tea. Otherwise, who in their right mind would let amateurs touch such fragile tea sets.
At this time, Jiang Dejun and Xu Guoqing sat behind the table and watched Jiang Cheng's performance.
That's right, Jiang Cheng was making the tea.
He first took up an appropriate amount of tea leaves with a wooden teaspoon and placed it on the tea tray. He introduced the Tieguanyin tea leaves to them in detail and after the two had seen the tea leaves, Jiang Cheng lifted the kettle and used the boiling water to wash and warm up the Yixing - Purple Sand teapot.
After warming the teapot, Jiang Cheng used the wooden teaspoon to transfer the tea leaves into the Yixing teapot filling it 2/3 full. Firstly using the thin tea leaves, then the thick ones, followed by the tea stalk, in a process called 'The Black Dragon Enters the Palace'.
He then poured water into the pot to rinse the leaves. Bubbles and broken tea leaves floated to the surface which he brushed away with the lid of the teapot, scraping off the foam at the mouth. His movements were gentle and elegant, enjoyable to the eyes.
The teapot was then once again rinsed with hot water to ensure that the temperature was the same on the inside as on the outside. Immediately after rinsing, he discarded the water in the teapot. Then he washed the tea cups with boiling water.
He poured fresh hot water into the teapot, filling it to the mouth and allowed the tea to infuse for 2 minutes, he then shook the teapot lightly to remove the water on the bottom so it wouldn't flow into the cups. Finally he poured the tea evenly into the cups. Even the last drops were poured out in one graceful movement.
With that the tea ceremony was completed.
Throughout the process, Jiang Cheng moved like floating clouds and flowing water, he was clearly skilled in his movements, completing everything all in one go. It was clear that Jiang Cheng had very good attainment in this respect.
"Such skill, it seems Little Cheng's Kung Fu Tea ceremony has improved again. Old Jiang, you have a good son!" Jiang Cheng's smooth set of actions were truly pleasing to the eye and Xu Guoqing couldn't help but praise Jiang Dejun.
Jiang Dejun just smiled slightly and didn't answer but looking at Jiang Cheng his eyes were full of pride.
This tea skill wasn't brought over by Jiang Cheng from his previous life, but learnt from this body's memories. Jiang Cheng had lived in Taiwan at his maternal grandfather's house when he was a child. His grandfather was an expert at tea ceremonies and accompanying him from a young age to drink and prepare tea, he had picked up the skill.
Tea was a part of China's traditional culture and knowing how to prepare it was a part of the gentleman's way. Knowing that Jiang Cheng had learned this skill, Jiang Dejun had spent a lot of effort to cultivate it and Jiang Cheng's family had several rare antique tea sets. Jiang Cheng also lived up to his expectations. After more than ten years of hard work, his kung fu tea had become quite popular.
After pouring the tea, Jiang Cheng gave the first cup to Xu Guoqing, and Xu Guoqing wasn't polite. After receiving it generously, he held the edge of the cup with his thumb and index finger, and pressed his middle finger against the bottom of the cup but he didn't drink it directly, smelling it carefully at the tip of his nose before then drinking it, dividing it into three sips.
"Good tea!" After drinking, Xu Guoqing praised, "Sure enough it is authentic Kung Fu tea! Your brewing skills continue to improve, surprising me every time Xiao Cheng. Hahaha I bet you're not far behind those tea masters of old!"
Jiang Cheng smiled modestly, "Thank you Uncle Xu"
After Xu Guoqing learned that Jiang Cheng was the author of [Stories About The Ming Dynasty], which he had long sought out, he had jumped around with joy.
Xu Guoqing and Jiang Dejun had been friends for many years. Southern Weekly was actually co-founded by the two, Xu Guoqing knew more about the financial and legal aspect of business and had put up more capital than Jiang Dejun so he took up the Chairman position whilst Jiang Dejun who knew more about literature and the industry became the chief editor and CEO.
As for the relationship between Xu Guoqing and Jiang Cheng naturally it was very good. They got to know each other quite late on as Jiang Cheng had lived in Taiwan when he was a child only returning to the mainland after he was 8 years old. Xu Guoqing needless to say was really good to Jiang Cheng. He kept his doors open to Jiang Cheng and treated him like family.
But with Jiang Cheng's academic workload having been heavy in recent years, and with the performance of Southern Weekly having been poor. Both sides were busy with their own affairs, and rarely interacted.
Plus initially Jiang Cheng was cautious about meeting Jiang Cheng's old acquaintances, so he basically didn't contact others.
However, it had nearly been a month since his rebirth and he had finally managed to completely merge with the old Jiang Cheng. The two sides had merged to form a new personality. He even felt enhanced, his mind was sharper and his memories from his previous life were crystal clear. He could rewind back and filter through them like video recordings. It was bewildering and fascinating at the same time.
"Okay let's get down to business! Xiao Cheng, what do you want for the copyright to [Stories About The Ming Dynasty]." Xu Guoqing said directly, not beating around the bush.
Jiang Cheng smiled indifferently: "I want a fifty-fifty split on the book sales."
"What?" Not only Xu Guoqing was shocked, but even Jiang Dejun was shocked. He didn't expect the kid to be so daring.
Xu Guoqing turned his head to look at Jiang Dejun, wide-eyed and said, "Old Jiang, is this your idea of negotiating?"
Seeing Xu Guoqing glaring over, Jiang Dejun shook his head and said, "Don't look at me like that. I've already told Xiao Cheng about the current market and my thoughts but he has to make his own decisions. He's old enough to have his own ideas and considerations after-all."
Jiang Cheng also interjected: "It's my own decision, it has nothing to do with my father. What's wrong with such a division plan?"
Xu Guoqing shook his head firmly: "A fifty-fifty split is simply whimsical! Xiao Cheng, I can't agree to your request. There is no sincerity at all."
"So what can you accept, Uncle Xu?"
"Thirty percent, Xiao Cheng, you can only get a maximum of thirty percent. This is based on the years of friendship between our families. Xiao Cheng, thirty percent is extremely high. There is basically no other publishing company offering such good terms. Others can only give you a maximum of 15-20%! Don't be the snake that tries to swallow an elephant only to choke."
"You really can't budge?"
"I really can't, I believe your father told you about some of the industry rules. Southern Weekly isn't what it used to be and it is incomparable to those industry giants. If the rules are broken, we will be attacked by the other publishing houses! And if that's to be the case, I would rather not have [Stories About The Ming Dynasty]!" "Xu Guoqing said decisively.
Jiang Cheng shook his head and smiled.
Seeing that he didn't seem to want to change his mind, Xu Guoqing said with a long heart: "Xiao Cheng, your achievements in this book are excellent and it will inevitably sell well. But you are a newcomer to the industry, and some rules are unbreakable. Trust me, I wouldn't scam you, 30% is an absolutely amazing offer! It is impossible for anyone to offer a higher share plan than I am! Just think about it this way, it's like an investment, this book will make you famous so next time we can renegotiate!"
Jiang Cheng knew that Xu Guoqing was being good to him, but it was still difficult to accept. What Xu Guoqing didn't know was that [Stories About The Ming Dynasty] in his previous life had sold tens of millions of copies and generated after-tax profits of several hundred million yuan! And that was in 2006, after the book industry had been greatly affected by the Internet, with physical book sales in decline.
Every percentage was potentially worth millions! Millions which were essential for his plan.
Jiang Cheng thought over it and replied: "Uncle Xu, I know you are being good to me, but I really can't accept such a share plan."
Xu Guoqing humphed: "If you're going to continue to be stubborn, then we have nothing to talk about."
"Wait, Uncle Xu." Jiang Cheng said quickly. "I have a counter offer. Can you listen first?"
"Hmm speak, what's your offer? "
Jiang Cheng took a deep breath and said, "I don't mind only taking 20% of the book sales for [Stories About The Ming Dynasty]."
"Really?" Xu Guoqing asked in a hurry.
And a trace of surprise flashed on Jiang Dejun's face, but he knew that Jiang Cheng must have an agenda, so he didn't say anything.
Sure enough, Jiang Cheng said: "Really, I'll only take 20% of the book sales.....But, for that I'll need a 15% share stake in Southern Weekly Publishing House!"
"What?" Xu Guoqing and Jiang Dejun exclaimed in unison.
More Privileged Chapters
Download the app and become a privileged reader today! Come take a sneak peek at our author's stockpiled chapters!Download
This's an experimental test for reading assistance in case.
We highly recommend you to enjoy the beauty of the original words.