Time Smuggling Starting From The Year 2000 - Chapter 20
Chapter 20: BLANK
Translator: Kim Guo Editor: Tehrn
’’This is good stuff,’’ after a long time, Shen Bingde exhaled deeply and said. ’’Although this Documents of Dispatches of the North Song Dynasty was just official paperwork, its seal is intact, characteristic and incredibly well-preserved.’’ Looking at the right of the paperwork, he continued, ’’However, seal collection stopped in the Republic of China. What a shame!’’
Huang Xuan laughed secretly, ’’Of course it is well preserved. Although it has changed hands several times, it has been taken good care of.’’ As for the fact that seal collection had stopped in the Republic of China, Huang Xuan felt lucky about it. If it had continued, Huang Xuan himself would have been doomed.
Seeing that Huang Xuan smiled and didn't say a word, Liu Ziqing asked, ’’Lao1 Shen, what's the estimated price?’’
’’I need more time to work on it, but I am thinking of at least 1.5 million,’’ Shen Bingde said conservatively.
The setting of an estimated price took a lot of work. In auction houses, since each word you said represented your professional standard, the experts were very cautious about their work, especially about the appraisal, which they usually compared and weighed again and again. On the one hand, people in different times had different mentalities, hence held different opinions on the same article. For example, a modern fauvism work would have been thrown away directly if it had been shown in the Renaissance. On the other hand, the same article could be sold at different prices in different auction houses, which increased the difficulty in price estimation.
Hearing Shen Bingde's words, Huang Xuan nodded his head slightly. Compared to Rolin's estimated price, 2.2-3.2 million, Shen Bingde's was ¥700,000 lower, but it was inevitable. Usually, when the deal was concluded at a price higher than the estimated price, nobody would blame the appraiser. Instead, they would thank the auctioneer. However, if the price was estimated too high, nobody would want that to happen.
Liu Ziqing took the casket from Shen Bingde. The paperwork was handwritten copies from the second year of Mingdao2 to the sixth year of Huangyou3 of the North Song Dynasty, i.e. 10331054, consisted of ten pieces of white hemp paper. He looked at the paperwork again and again, and then said with a smile, ’’Mr. Huang has a rich collection. Are you going to sell it to a private buyer this time or in an auction house?’’
’’If somebody is willing to buy it at the price of 2.8 million, I will sell it. Otherwise, I will consider auction.’’ Huang Xuan settled the price in the middle. Although he still lacked money, he was unwilling to sell the fruit of his labor cheap.
Liu Ziqing nodded excitedly and said, ’’Don't worry, Mr. Huang. I will be well-prepared.’’
’’That will be good.’’ Huang Xuan glanced at Shen Bingde secretly. Seeing that he remained composed after he had shown distrust in his appraisal, Huang Xuan was relaxed. Apparently, this was a shrewd and deep one. Huang Xuan smiled and said, ’’Thank you, Mr. Liu. You know,
people alway hope to sell their things at a higher price. But if the paperwork is sold at auction, you won't get the commission.’’
’’Of course,’’ Liu Ziqing said. Huang Xuan had promised a 5% commission, but at the auction, he could get 12%. Therefore, to him, he could get a commission either way.
Huang Xuan wasn't aware of that. He put the paperwork away carefully, thought and said, ’’I have ten other ancient books, which I also want to sell in the coming days. I hope Mr. Liu could help find the buyers.’’
’’Er...’’ Liu Ziqing had been ready to leave. Hearing this, he said with some awkwardness, ’’Mr. Huang, I trust you, but there is a rule in this business saying that we must see the articles first.’’
This was unexpected. Huang Xuan had thought that he only needed to have one of the books authenticated. After some thinking, he said, ’’It is inconvenient to take them out now anyway. I can give you the names. It will be the best if there are private buyers. If not, I will bring them to the auction house.’’
If he could get millions more to buy oil, he would be able to fool Rolin for a while. The rest wasn't urgent. Pretending to be writing the names of the books, Huang Xuan opened his mouth a little and said to Rolin, ’’What are the names of the books? How to spell them?’’
Soon, Huang Xuan handed over the names with the estimated prices to Liu Ziqing, and said, ’’Among these, there is a Taiwan map drawn by the ombudsman inspecting Taiwan Province, Baiying, in 1748, which he later presented to Emperor Qianlong. Except for this map and the paperwork, the rest are all ancient books. Please help me sell them as dear as possible.’’
Liu Ziqing made a promise and took the paper with the names on. On seeing the numbers next to the names, he was instantly shocked. In the first line, it said ’’The handwritten copy of the play Yu Shuang Room collected by Cheng Yanqiu, five million.’’ The price of each of the rest was above two million, so the total value would be more than thirty million. Liu Ziqing took a deep breath. No matter these books were sold at auction or bought by private buyers, he would be a very rich man. That was for sure.
However, thinking of this, he became hesitant and said, ’’Mr. Huang, to be honest, these collections are enough to hold a special auction for them. If you are sure to sell them, I suggest you let Lao Shen authenticate them.’’
’’A special auction for my collections?’’ Huang Xuan was intrigued.
’’Of course there will be other articles too.’’ To avoid misunderstanding, Huang Xuan said frankly, ’’Before the auction, we need at least one month to get prepared. Also, you need to have these articles authenticated by our firm. We will sign an agreement with you and pay a deposit for the articles.’’
At this point, it became very clear to Huang Xuan that he had been too naive. He sipped some coffee and said, ’’Can I use the deposit?’’
’’Theoretically, it should be deposited into a bank account.’’ Seeing Huang Xuan had been moved, Liu Ziqing said, ’’But if Mr. Huang is short of funds, our firm can loan you a sum no more than 10% of the total value after the authentication.’’
Huang Xuan calculated, ’’10%. That would be more than two million.’’ Then he nodded and said, ’’It will be OK if you can loan me 10% and reduce the commission to 8%.’’
’’No problem. I can agree to it right now,’’ Liu Ziqing said immediately. Huang Xuan's request wasn't harsh. Besides, with these best editions, his firm would be able to hold a special auction for the best editions of ancient books and gather the similar articles together, which would be totally beneficial.
Without more consideration, after informing Rolin of it, Huang Xuan made the decision and said, ’’Please wait for me for a moment. I will fetch my books. Then we can go to your firm together.’’
’’All right. If Mr. Huang has a lawyer, you can bring him or her along,’’ Liu Ziqing put the casket away for Huang Xuan as he said these words. Huang Xuan smiled, ’’Who can be a better lawyer than Rolin?’’
Lao: used before a person's surname indicating seniority.
Mingdao: the reign title of Emperor Renzong of the Song Dynasty, which was used during the years 1032-1033.
Huangyou: the reign title of Emperor Renzong of the Song Dynasty, which was used during the years 1049-1054.