The Feast – 036 – Very Un-Exciting

The Feast – 036 – Very Un-Exciting

Chapter 36: Very Un-Exciting

 

Kirindas: *kisses*!

Megumi:*kisses*!

Queue: Thank you for the comments, I thought I’d keep at it here for the moment, since this site is run on ads and while I’m not sure how Admin-san is, I’d like to maintain it here for at least a year. As for the others, I’m translating them (minus the Japanese one) without his permission.

Seawaterwitch Mira: Nobody likes the husband, but we’ll see if this will change, lol.

Julie: I love this story so much!

Glayne: Thank you for reading this. They are a fun couple aren’t they?

Who Cares: The original is ‘Fuling bing’ and Duan Tingxuan did say they’re difficult to make, so I’m assuming it’s the super fragile one with filling.

 

Lots of love,

 

Gumihou

 

 

Old Madam Fang smiled, “That’s right, each time I hear Xuan’er talk about the fun anecdote from Mei Yue Lou, though it’s all ‘Flying Chickens and Jumping Dogs[1]’ tales, for some reason, it made me feel very relaxed. Additionally, all those snacks are certainly delicious, ah. I’ve already lived up to this grand age, these are still the best snacks I’ve ever had. Being able to eat well on a contented heart is the best.”

Having said this, old madam sank into a serious contemplation. After a while she muttered in a soft voice, as though speaking to herself, “Do you think, that it’s really possible for a person to change after the brink of death?”

Qiu Ling answered firmly, “Though this servant is young and knows very little, this lowly one knows the saying ‘It’s Easier to Change Mountains and Rivers than to Change a Person’s Character’. This means it’s difficult and not impossible. There’s also the saying ‘Word of a Dying Man Comes From the Heart’, having experienced such terrible terror, it’s normal that one’s character would change, ba? Otherwise, how could the saying ‘To Lay Down the Sword and Become a Buddha’ exist? Old madam, don’t you think this is true?”

Old Madam Fang lowered her head and thought, after a while she looked up with a smile, “You’re right, though it’s not something a normal person would see, you still speak with insight. It’s fine, I’m already old, why should I care so much about such trivialities? Being able to eat and sleep well is considered good fortune. Hn, the amount of cloth Xuan’er took with him is quite a lot, I wonder what kind of good things he’ll being back to me?”

Qiu Ling smiled, “Old madam please be patient, though the cloths have been brought over, first madam still needs to make the dishes. It should still take sometime, ah. So why don’t Madam take a little nap first? Or perhaps you’d like me to call a few people over to play mah-jong?”

“No need, I’ll just rest for a while.” Old Madam Fang waved her hand, and stayed where she was.

… do, do, do read this at kitchennovel.com …

“You saw this clearly? Your master really went to Mei Yue Lou?”

“Yes, the master brought quite a lot of people with him. It looks like he is taking some cloth over to Mei Yue Lou. This servant waited until they actually went through the door before coming over to report to elder madam.” within the official wife’s East Courtyard, an approximately 23 year old maid was reporting to Madam Yang in a crisp voice.

“Taking some cloth over?” Madam Yang frowned.

Beside her, Xu Ran Yun gave a cold laugh, “Madam, what is there to misunderstand here? Unexpectedly, our master who has never shown any interest in these things would personally pick out so many bolts of cloth to bring them to Mei Yue Lou. I’m afraid first madam would be so happy to the point that her mouth would not close properly.”

Madam Yang gave Xu Ran Yun a look, and said neutrally, “What are you saying? Nuan Nuan is still Xuan’er’s official wife, so what if he gifted her some cloth? She isn’t like any of you. Even without my permission, the two of you have already taken the initiative to carry off the cloth you like.”

A faint red stained Xu Ran Yun and Xue Zi Lan cheeks. Xue Zi Lan quickly smiled, “Actually, since madam is a little annoyed, we dared not bother you with such trivialities. Since madam said this, I shall send the cloth here and let madam help me choose. I’ve always trusted madam’s eyes to be good.”

Madam Yang waved a hand, “It’s fine, it’s fine, I’m just saying this in passing. As long as you like it, why should I bother?” after saying this, she heard Xu Ran Yun say in a small voice, “Madam mistaken my meaning, I am not at all bothered by the Lord picking out cloth for first madam. It’s just, I was thinking, why has the Lord never showed any interest in such things before today? It’s possible that he wishes to request first madam for some things, who knows what first madam will extort from the Lord this time.”

As the meaning of the words sank in, Madam Yang’s shapely eyebrows fell into a sharp incline. She coldly snorted, “Who cares about her, I just wish to see just what kind of power she has over Xuan’er to make him so servile.”

So saying, she angrily stood up. Xu Ran Yun and Xue Zi Lan exchanged a glance and breathed a sigh of relief. Xue Zi Lan quickly said, “Madam, please calm down. If the Lord is over there, it is not proper for you to appear. What if a conflict happens…”

Madam Yang cut her off, “A conflict? If a conflict happens than I’ll have him divorce her and kick her out. This An Ping mansion will not put up with lawless and immoral women like her.”

Xu Ran Yun and Xue Zi Lan were just waiting for these very words. Though their faces were masks of worry, their hearts were dancing as they waited for Madam Yang to change her clothes and accompanied her to Mei Yue Lou.

… please read this at kitchennovel.com …

At this moment in Mei Yue Lou, Su Nuan Nuan, Hong Lian and Xiang Yun were looking through all sorts of satin, cotton and muslin fabrics and were singing praises over them. All foodies have some love of beauty within them, the two parts do not conflict, especially when eating does not bring in unsightly weight gain. In both lifetimes, whether by fortune or misfortune, her body always had trouble absorbing nutrition. Regardless of how much she ate, her body weight never increases. Luckily though the previous owner tried to starve herself, this body has not yet turned into skin and bones, otherwise it would really be a tragedy.

[…translator is jealous. Translator is 0.5 over average BMI…]

After some consideration, she concluded that this was possibly the reason why, despite Duan Tingxuan’s astonishing strength and lusty vigour, Su Meng Nuan has yet to conceive. It was probably due to this body’s bad nutritional level. However, this was Su Meng Nuan’s secret distress, and has nothing to do with Su Nuan Nuan. In fact, she rejoiced over having such a poor constitution. If you must know, this was the ultimate body constitution that all the girls in the internet wished to have, ah.

“These are all for me?”

As she gently stroked the slippery satin, Su Nuan Nuan could not help but be suspicious. How could this rascal have such a good heart? As the saying goes: Those who offer help for no reason hides evil intentions. Must be on guard.

“Yes, the master has spent half a day picking these out for you. Saying that these patterns should suit Madam’s taste most. This is the first time this servant witness  the master showing interest in cloths.” Si Ping stooped his waist, smiling as he did his best to say good things for his master. Only to see Su Nuan Nuan’s deep frown, “Why such care? Did he want me to sell these on his behalf?”

“S-sell…behalf?” Si Ping stared blankly, he felt as though his brain could not follow first madam’s reasoning.

“Yes, sell on behalf. Buying and selling. These forty-four pieces of cloth are all good things and would fetch good money. We could even make a big splash in the capital.” It was like Su Nuan Nuan’s mouth was running as fast as a steam train, Si Ping just got more and more confused. He was just about to say something when, she suddenly stood up with a loud screech, “Where’s your master? Where’s that rascal Duan Tingxuan? Didn’t he come with you? Where is that rat now!?”

“That…as this servant understands it, at this very moment, the master should be…most likely…possibly…very close to the ki-…”

Si Ping started off with a low voice, which got smaller and smaller under Su Nuan Nuan’s glare which grew more and more furious. After the final syllable ‘-tchen…’ was dragged out, there was silence.

“Arrgh! That rascal is stealing my food again.” Su Nuan Nuan howled. Ignoring the piles of beautiful cloth and it’s money making potential, she moved her legs and ran. Si Ping wanted to stop her, but in the end did not dare. He could only twitched his eyes as he watch Su Nuan Nuan ran out of the room. He made sure the woman was out of sight before shouting, “Master, run away, ah! Madam is coming!”

Duan Tingxuan was having a time of his life in the kitchen eating on the sly. Don’t know what good mood Su Nuan Nuan was in, but there were several different kinds of good things to eat. This really made the little marquis understand most profoundly blessed feeling from the term ‘A Mouse that has Fallen into a Rice Bin.’

Who knew how long this blessed happiness would last as he happily gobbled up everything in sight. Which was when Si Ping’s voice reached him. Shocking him to the point that he almost dropped the fried chicken in hand. Without thinking too deeply, he quickly stuck a chicken drumstick into his mouth, grabbed two fancy flower roll[2] buns in each paw and hurriedly outside.

“Even cloth can’t distract you, Su Nuan Nuan, are you even a woman?”

The little marquis clutched the drumstick with his teeth, running and looking back at the same time, and saw Su Nuan Nuan with a large broomstick raised over her head, she was flying towards him with vengeance. He could not resist a frustrated cry and ran faster.

“Duan Tingxuan you stinky food thief, do you even have an ounce of pride? Look at yourself, you don’t even look like a nobleman any more, where did your precious noble dignity as a little marquis go?” Su Nuan Nuan screamed as she chased him, attempting to attack this rascal’s pride as a little marquis.

“What’s this dignity you speak of? Can it be eaten?” Duan Tingxuan ran and retorted sarcastically at the same time. He even made time to take a large bite of the fried chicken and tried to think up other clever responses as he chewed and swallowed as quickly as he could. This was one of the first retort he had heard in those first few days at Mei Yue Lou. It was too bad he could not come up with something original. The kitchen was the heart of Mei Yue Lou after all, guarded by this fierce tigress called Su Nuan Nuan, if he’s not fast with his mouth there was no way he’d ever be able to eat anything from here. This was a unique skill he had poured his blood and sweat to learn, ah.

[Gumihou:…I has no words…]

Su Nuan Nuan was pissed off. To think that this rascal dared to use her words against her. She watched as that wretched Duan Tingxuan ran faster and faster in the yard, almost leaving after images. The first madam could not help but be angry and amused at the same time. She simply stopped running and brandished her broom, stabbing a finger at Duan Tingxuan’s disappearing form and howled, “Aren’t you a grand and dignified little marquis, famous for his letters and kungfu? Why do you run away as soon as you see me? Are you really frightened of a weak woman like myself? Aren’t you a shameful one.”

“Pei!” Duan Tingxuan spat out a chicken bone. “You, a weak woman? If you’re a weak woman, then there are no men in this world. A good man does not quarrel with woman, if I want to run, I’ll run, what can you do to me?”

“Duan Tingxuan, as a seven feet tall man, if you dare say that, why all this running away? If you have balls stand still.” Su Nuan Nuan continued to shout, however she did not hold out any hopes. This rascal of a man has gotten more and more shameless. His sense of shame wasn’t something that could be trigger with just a few words.

As expected, Duan Tingxuan merely gripped the half eaten fried drumstick with his teeth and laughed loudly, “Hahaha! Nuan Nuan, you save your breath, ba. You think the me who spent all my days at the government office dealing with those cunning old wolves and sly foxes would fall for your cheap tricks? Think again!”

“If tricks are useless against you, shall we try palace rules?”

An unexpected voice suddenly sounded from the front entrance, shaking both Duan Tingxuan and Su Nuan Nuan from their battle. Both looked up and saw Madam Yang standing angrily at the doorway. Her glare burned a path towards them, her whole body emitting killing intent. Even the crows in the trees which had been enjoying the show below them scattered into the sky crying:

-gua~ gua~ gua~…

 

 

 

[1] Flying Chickens & Jumping Dogs – A very messy and noisy situation, as though there are lots of frightened chickens and dogs jumping and flapping about.

[2] Flower Roll

https://www.thespruceeats.com/chinese-flower-roll-hua-juan-694493

 

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Translated by Gumihou at kitchennovel dot com

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