Chapter 114: Demanding 10 million taels at the start, such a huge appetite!
To think that they still have no idea and are producing these problematic big balloons at any cost!
In the end, they lost a great deal of manpower and resources, but gained nothing!
The Empress couldn’t help but burst into laughter!
“Lin Beifan’s move is truly ruthless and brilliant!”
“With minimal effort and without deploying military forces, he weakened the strength of all the vassal kings, allowing my own power to rapidly expand!”
“The scales of victory are gradually tipping in my favor!”
“Kings, none of you could have expected this, right?”
The Empress was extremely proud.
Now, she held the legitimate title and possessed a large amount of wealth, allowing her to develop her hidden forces.
The longer the time dragged on, the more advantageous it became for her.
She increasingly admired and appreciated Lin Beifan.
This guy was always unpredictable, often causing her headaches, but he proved to be the most reliable at crucial moments.
As she thought about it, she found herself missing that guy somewhat.
“Oh, how is Sir Lin doing now? He has been so quiet these past few days. It’s not like him! Oh, didn’t I reward him with a good piece of land? Did he accept it?”
The old eunuch lowered his head and reported, “Your Majesty, Sir Lin has been busy running between the Imperial Academy, the Ministry of Industry, and the Forbidden Army’s camp these past few days. His official duties are quite demanding! As for the land, Sir Lin has not accepted it yet!”
“He hasn’t accepted it? This won’t do!” The Empress urged, “Go and remind him to accept the land as soon as possible! Only with land will he settle down!”
“Yes, Your Majesty!” The old eunuch bowed and left.
Soon after, the old eunuch personally visited Lin Beifan’s residence.
“Wang Gonggong, it’s said that one should not enter the Treasure Hall without a reason. What brings you here?” Lin Beifan greeted with a smile.
“Sir Lin, it is Her Majesty’s order for me to come.” The old eunuch chuckled.
“Do you have any instructions from Her Majesty?” Lin Beifan was puzzled as he felt that there hadn’t been much going on recently.
“Sir Lin, have you forgotten? Her Majesty once rewarded you with a hundred mu of good land, but you haven’t gone to claim it yet! Her Majesty grew impatient, so she sent me to remind you!” the old eunuch laughed.
Lin Beifan slapped his forehead. “Oh, dear, I’ve been busy with official duties lately and forgot. I’m sorry!”
In reality, he never took it seriously. After all, he was someone who could be on the run at any moment, and he couldn’t take the land with him. What use did he have for it? So he unconsciously forgot about it.
“Sir Lin, you’re currently in favor and working diligently for Her Majesty, so it’s understandable that your official duties keep you busy. However, you can’t neglect the land! Can you find some time to accompany me? Otherwise, if Her Majesty blames me, it won’t be good for me either!” The old eunuch forced a smile.
“Where is this land? Is it far?” Lin Beifan asked.
“Not far, it’s just outside the city! This is a piece of land specially selected by Her Majesty for you!” The old eunuch said enviously.
“Alright, since that’s the case, let’s go take a look!” Lin Beifan nodded.
“Good, please follow me!” The old eunuch led the way.
Lin Beifan brought along Li Shi Shi and others, so they could recognize the way.
After about an hour, they arrived outside the city.
The old eunuch pointed to a fertile and neatly organized piece of land. “Sir Lin, this is the good land rewarded to you by Her Majesty, a total of 100 mu! It’s not far from the capital city, making it convenient to manage. What do you think?”
(Tln: 1 mu about 666 square meters, approximately 9 soccer fields could fit into an area of 100 mu.)
At a glance, it was indeed good land, as the rice fields were thriving.
Having spent over three years in this world, Lin Beifan had never seen such excellent farmland before.
Lin Beifan nodded and smiled. “It’s excellent. I really like it. Please convey my thanks to Her Majesty, Wang Gonggong!”
“Sir Lin, as long as you’re pleased with it!” The old eunuch also smiled and took out a box containing several papers. He advised, “These are the land deeds for this piece of land. Please keep them safe, Sir Lin!”
“Thank you, Wang Gonggong!” Lin Beifan received it with both hands.
“It’s nothing. I’ll go back and report now!”
“Take care, Wang Gonggong!”
At this moment, holding the land deed in his hand and looking at the fertile land in front of him, Lin Beifan felt a bit confused.
Is it this easy to become a wicked landlord, exploiting the farmers in the old society?
He sighed silently in his heart.
After all these years, I’ve become the person I despise the most!
But this feeling…
I like it!
“Husband, we have our own land now!” Li Shi Shi was overjoyed.
For people living in this era, having their own piece of land meant having a means of livelihood, it meant having hope, it meant they wouldn’t starve to death.
This is a sense of security that money cannot bring!
Just like now, many people, even when they have money, still want to buy a house to feel secure.
It’s a tradition deeply ingrained in our bones.
“Shi Shi, you’re happy too early!” Lin Beifan sighed and smiled bitterly. “With the things we’ve done, we’ll eventually have to leave this place. We can’t take this land with us. What’s the use of having it?”
“Husband, what you said is true!” Li Shi Shi’s mood dampened.
Lin Beifan felt a pang of heartache and quickly comforted her, “Don’t worry! Everything will be fine! No difficulty can defeat me! The world is vast, and there will always be a place for us to settle!”
“Wherever my husband is, that’s where our home is!” Li Shi Shi smiled and nestled gently against Lin Beifan. The two of them enjoyed this moment of tranquility.
Meanwhile, Lin Beifan’s mind began to wander.
Although he couldn’t take this land with him and it wouldn’t bring him significant profits, he could use it as a test field for hybrid rice.
It was much better than the small experimental field at the Imperial Academy.
With this in mind, Lin Beifan said to Dali with determination, “Dali, I need you to go to the Imperial Academy! Gather the students responsible for hybrid rice research and tell them that I have a good piece of land that can be used as a test field for hybrid rice!”
“Alright, young master!”
In about half an hour, they all arrived.
Seeing this vast fertile land, they were extremely delighted.
“Director Lin, this fertile land is truly fertile!”
“It’s perfect for use as a test field!”
“We can have a great experiment here!”
Lin Beifan smiled and said, “Everyone, work hard! This is a great undertaking that will bring glory to our generation and benefit future generations! If we succeed, I will report to the court and recommend all of you for recognition! There will be promotions and titles waiting for you!”
The students were overjoyed because there were precedents for this. Previously, the students who worked on the research of hot air balloons received praise from the court, which made their career paths smoother. If they were able to develop hybrid rice that increased productivity and solved the food problem for the common people, what kind of rewards would they receive?
The students exclaimed in unison, “Thank you very much, Sir!”
Lin Beifan nodded with a smile.
“Husband, is it really possible to develop this hybrid rice?” Li Shi Shi couldn’t help but ask.
“It will definitely be possible!” Lin Beifan was full of confidence. “If everything goes smoothly, we will reap the harvest on this day next year! It’s not just wishful thinking, it will become a reality!”
“If you really succeed, my husband, you will be regarded as a sage of ancient times and your name will be remembered for generations!” Li Shi Shi said excitedly.
Lin Beifan shook his head and smiled. “I haven’t thought that far ahead! I just want to do something within my capabilities and help others in any way I can. As for how others see me, it’s not my concern.”
“Amitabha! Master, you truly embody the spirit of a true Buddha in this world!” Two monks folded their hands together in admiration.
“However, we still need more people! Help me gather the tenant farmers from here!”
Before long, dozens of farmers gathered, looking anxious as they gazed at Lin Beifan.
They had already heard that Lin Beifan was extremely greedy. Could it be that he was dissatisfied with the previous rent distribution system and wanted to demand more money?
One elderly farmer, gathering his courage, asked, “Sir Lin, you summoned us here. What is the matter?”
“I intend to take back this land to cultivate hybrid rice,” Lin Beifan replied.
The farmers panicked upon hearing this and fell to their knees.
“Sir, you can’t take back the land! What will we eat and drink? My whole family depends on this land!”
“Please have mercy on us and leave us a way to survive!”
“We truly beg you, sir!”
Lin Beifan frowned, “Listen to me till the end! Although I will take back this land, I’m not going to drive you away. I intend to use it for cultivating hybrid rice.”
“As for what hybrid rice is, you don’t need to worry about it. Just follow these students and do what they ask you to do. Take good care of the farmland. As long as you obey and perform well, I will pay each of you one or two taels of silver as wages every month!”
“One or two taels of silver per month!” The farmers were shocked.
You see, as lower-class farmers, they would earn at most four or five taels of silver in a year through their hard work, and that’s assuming a decent harvest. If they were to receive one or two taels of silver per month, it would be 12 taels in a year!
Nearly double the amount!
“Sir Lin, are you telling the truth?” It was the same old farmer, asking with excitement and anticipation.
Lin Beifan stood with his hands behind his back, “Of course! Why would I deceive you? Do you think I can’t afford a mere amount of silver?”
They all remembered his wealth and felt reassured. He was a person of status and wealth, so there was no need for him to deceive them.
“Good! Sir, I will work with you!”
“Sir, I will work with you too!”
“As long as we don’t starve, we will do whatever you ask us to do!”
“A wise choice. I like obedient people!” Lin Beifan snapped his fingers and said to Dali beside him, “Give each of them one or two taels of silver to improve their lives! If they continue to perform well in the future, reward them further!”
The farmers were overjoyed, “Thank you, Sir Lin!”
Under Lin Beifan’s benevolent and authoritative influence, the farmers expressed their gratitude and enthusiastically participated in the construction of the experimental fields to help Lin Beifan cultivate hybrid rice.
The farmland was a scene of bustling activity.
“This day next year will be the time of harvest!”
“With hybrid rice, Great Wu’s power will undergo a tremendous transformation!”
Lin Beifan felt that he couldn’t afford to lose after making such a significant contribution to the Empress and the Da Wu Empire.
Therefore, the next morning during the court session, Lin Beifan submitted a petition.
“I humbly report to Your Majesty that my research on hybrid rice has entered a critical stage, but we are currently in dire need of funds. I respectfully request an allocation of 10 million taels for research purposes. I am deeply grateful!”
As soon as he uttered these words, the entire court was in an uproar!
The Empress twitched her mouth. Asking for 10 million taels right off the bat, such a huge appetite!
Did he become too greedy recently, inflated, and carried away?