Chapter 99: Poor Second Young Master
Translated by Gumihou
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com
“That dratted cat,” Duan Tingxuan sneered down at the creature. But he quickly ceased when Su Nuan Nuan glowered at him. This creature was his wife’s beloved pet after all, and has a higher position in her heart that he. Duan Tingxuan could only reigned in his temper and smiled ingratiatingly at their mistress, “Don’t you think he’s a little too fat? It’s not good to overfeed small animals, he might find it difficult to move and could even die from too overeating. I just don’t want you to be sad if he died.”
Su Nuan Nuan rubbed her arms and shivered, “Enough, I can feel goosebumps from that disgusting tone of voice. You think I didn’t see it when you stole half of the fish meant for Zhao Chai? A liar and a thief, that’s what you are.”
“Ahem, ahem, well, you can’t really blame me. The fish was really delicious that day.” the little marquis muttered shame-facedly. He scooped another dainty bite of Snow Cream into his mouth, “I’m eating this slowly because there isn’t much of it. Once it’s gone there will be none left.”
“That’s just a dessert, are you not going to have a proper dinner?” Su Nuan Nuan was feeling crossed now. “We’re having Sweet & Sour Fish, Pork Bone Soup with Fresh Lotus, Lotus Leaf Sticky Rice…” before she could finish listing the food, Duan Tingxuan had swallowed down the rest of the Snow Cream, licked the plate clean in two sweeps of his tongue and was now primly seated at the dining table.
“Now that dinner turned out to be more delicious, looks like Snow Cream is no longer my master’s salvation. Also, master’s mood change too quickly, ah.” Xiang Yun was clutching her sides while trying to remain upright, letting out the occasional [pu chi]. Thanks to Su Nuan Nuan’s influence, no one pretended to have dignity at Spring Breeze Court anymore.
“What does a maid like you know?” the little marquis said a little embarrassedly to Xiang Yun, he could only pretend to be angry and rebuke the maid before suddenly turning to Su Nuan Nuan. “Oh yes, dear Nuan Nuan. Who have you sent the Snow Cream to?”
“You should be asking who I haven’t sent to.” Su Nuan Nuan counted off the people with her fingers. “I’ve ordered servants to send it to the old madam, elder madam, Madam Lin, second branch… aih, no choice. Who ask me to be the heir’s wife? The heir’s wife had put on an act magnanimity, otherwise I would have skipped Madam Yun and Madam Lan altogether. Sister Jing was just here today, so I get to personally serve her. Well, is my lord happy with this arrangement.?”
Duan Tingxuan placed the empty plate on the table before sitting down to look interestedly at Su Nuan Nuan, “So, you’re saying that you’ve sent this to second brother’s place?”
“Yes, even though I don’t like that husband and wife combo. You don’t like them either, but unfortunately we can’t be too blatant about not liking them.” Su Nuan Nuan had already been warned by Duan Tingxuan about this couple’s ambitious nature. Therefore, in order not to allow them any opportunity to retaliate, they couldn’t do anything that would attract the old marquis’ attention. Otherwise, if the two branches of family started fighting, the old marquis might change his mind about maintaining Duan Tingxuan as the heir.
“I see,” Duan Tingxuan clapped his hands and laughed out loud. “When I saw Tingye earlier, he actually came over to greet me. And then there’s that maid, Chun’er, who suddenly appeared with tears in her eyes. I thought that it was all too odd a coincidence. Looks like second brother had set his sights on your Snow Cream. Hahaha! Clearly these people have a hidden scheme up their sleeves.”
“Why are you so happy about them scheming?” Su Nuan Nuan asked curiously. Normally, most people would be wary about this, so why are you grinning like you’ve just received a mountain of silver?
“Of course I’m happy, someone is about to waste their efforts trying to make money, what’s not to be happy about?” Duan Tingxuan smile grew even more cunning. He turned to Xiang Yun and said, “Call Si Ping and a few other maids over, this lord has some instructions for you.”
Xiang Yun said and trotted away. Su Nuan Nuan soon caught wind of his scheme and said in a hushed tone, “So, you have a counter move for this couple’s plan to seal the Snow Cream recipe?”
Duan Tingxuan nodded, “Of course. In fact, I have a feeling that that second brother of mine has been eyeing your recipes for quite a while now. In this peaceful era, the commoners have plenty of money to burn, it’s the best time to make money through luxury goods off of rich merchants and upstart middle classes. With your recipes, a restaurant would have customers coming in all day, and perhaps even travel a long way just to taste your cuisine.
He’d been trying to make money through the shipping business, unfortunately that route is fairly saturated with red rapes and bureaucrats looking to make a quick buck. Even if a ship manages to reach the harbour safely, by the time the goods went through all hands, the profit margin becomes very thin. However, this is not the case for food business. All one would have to do is hire a few cooks and a get a good location. However, their pride is toweringly high, which is why they haven’t made a move yet. Now that Snow Cream has appeared, well, looks like they can’t bear to sit on their hands any longer.”
“Snow Cream is just a small dessert, how could it be compared to proper restaurant dishes?”
From Su Nuan Nuan’s modern person point of view, the Snow Cream was the cheapest thing she had made yet ever since coming over to this ancient world. A stick of ice-cream would only earn a few cents in the modern world after all. So, how much of a profit could it bring?
“A small dessert!” Duan Tingxuan couldn’t contain his own excitement, he stood up and shuttled over to sit next to Su Nuan Nuan, “You think this is just a small dessert? That’s a complete misconception. Why do you think Tingye has restrained himself until now despite all your delicious creations? That’s because no matter how delicious they are, they’re still considered earth bound food. Food which could still be made after much effort or imagination. However, this Snow Cream, heheh. To be honest, until you’ve made it, I’ve never even imagine that something like Cream could exist. The way we’ve used cow’s milk had always been the same, it’s either mixed in desserts or poured over a dish.
Your Snow Cream, however, I bet even the Imperial Kitchens never came up with something so amazing. Though your Milk Smoothie captured the hearts of the whole of the royal family, emperor, empress, crown prince and the other princes included, it is also adored by the people in our mansion. That dessert is loved because of its simplicity, but this Snow Cream is different.”
Su Nuan Nuan was stunned by Duan Tingxuan’s long explanation. She had always thought that this guy was just a bureaucrat who didn’t know where money came from. To hear him talk about business opportunities in such a clear cut and logical manner was incredibly jarring. The way he put it, it was as though running a country was just like running a business. By the way, do you have to be such an amazing all-rounder? To the point that you’d actually bully Duan Tingye to death? Poor guy, to be the younger brother of such an amazingly talented brother was just pitiful, ah. How sad to be the background character to your brother for the rest of life, ah.
The little marquis was beaming with delight at whatever thoughts brewing in his head. Until even Su Nuan Nuan pitied the Second Young Master Duan so much that she decided to say something in his defence. “Surely there’s no need to do this? Though second brother is a little greedy, majority of the money earned would go into the Duan family coffers. Also, it’s not like this Snow Cream is anything special, it’s just some cold snack thing. Why not let him have it? You’re already the lord heir, an important political figure who could influence the country’s major decisions. So why are you picking fight with him?”
[Gumihou: Because Duan Tingxuan is a bully, that’s why. Humph!]
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Translated by Gumihou from kitchennovel dot com.
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