In a few minutes the servant returned. "Master，" she explained， "says： 'that he has not felt quite well for several days， that as the meeting with Miss Lin will affect both her as well as himself， he does not for the present feel equal to seeing each other， that he advises Miss Lin not to feel despondent or homesick； that she ought to feel quite at home with her venerable ladyship， （her grandmother，） as well as her maternal aunts； that her cousins are， it is true， blunt， but that if all the young ladies associated together in one place， they may also perchance dispel some dulness； that if ever （Miss Lin） has any grievance， she should at once speak out， and on no account feel a stranger； and everything will then be right."
Tai-yue lost no time in respectfully standing up， resuming her seat after she had listened to every sentence of the message to her. After a while， she said goodbye， and though madame Hsing used every argument to induce her to stay for the repast and then leave， Tai-yue smiled and said， "I shouldn't under ordinary circumstances refuse the invitation to dinner， which you， aunt， in your love kindly extend to me， but I have still to cross over and pay my respects to my maternal uncle Secundus； if I went too late， it would， I fear， be a lack of respect on my part； but I shall accept on another occasion. I hope therefore that you will， dear aunt， kindly excuse me."
"If such be the case，" madame Hsing replied， "it's all right." And presently directing two nurses to take her niece over， in the carriage， in which they had come a while back， Tai-yue thereupon took her leave； madame Hsing escorting her as far as the ceremonial gate， where she gave some further directions to all the company of servants. She followed the curricle with her eyes so long as it remained in sight， and at length retraced her footsteps. buy strap on
Tai-yue shortly entered the Jung Mansion， descended from the carriage， and preceded by all the nurses， she at once proceeded towards the east， turned a corner， passed through an Entrance Hall， running east and west， and walked in a southern direction， at the back of the Large Hall. On the inner side of a ceremonial gate， and at the upper end of a spacious court， stood a large main building， with five apartments， flanked on both sides by out-houses （stretching out） like the antlers on the head of deer； side-gates， resembling passages through a hill， establishing a thorough communication all round； （a main building） lofty， majestic， solid and grand， and unlike those in the compound of dowager lady Chia. marital aids
Tai-yue readily concluded that this at last was the main inner suite of apartments. A raised broad road led in a straight line to the large gate. Upon entering the Hall， and raising her head， she first of all perceived before her a large tablet with blue ground， upon which figured nine dragons of reddish gold. The inscription on this tablet consisted of three characters as large as a peck-measure， and declared that this was the Hall of Glorious Felicity.
At the end， was a row of characters of minute size， denoting the year， month and day， upon which His Majesty had been pleased to confer the tablet upon Chia Yuan， Duke of Jung Kuo. Besides this tablet， were numberless costly articles bearing the autograph of the Emperor. On the large black ebony table， engraved with dragons， were placed three antique blue and GREen bronze tripods， about three feet in height. On the wall hung a large picture representing black dragons， such as were seen in waiting chambers of the Sui dynasty. On one side stood a gold cup of chased work， while on the other， a crystal casket. On the ground were placed， in two rows， sixteen chairs， made of hard-grained cedar.
there was also a pair of scrolls consisting of black-wood antithetical tablets， inlaid with the strokes of words in chased gold. Their burden was this：
On the platform shine resplendent pearls like sun or moon， And the sheen of the Hall facade gleams like russet sky.