Extra Part 4.1 : Let’s Gather Again, 10 Years Later
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Onionpi
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com
“After receiving the award from the Imperial Court, I shall be staying at the Capital for the foreseeable future. However, this younger brother has a rather bold request, I wish to ask cousin-in-law to teach me your cooking skills…”
Before he could continue, Duan Tingxuan began to huff and growl, “What nonsense are you talking about? Do you take your cousin-in-law as a common cook? If you want to eat, just take that venomous snake with you to An Le Lou. An Le Lou has a new dish out every month and has up to a few hundred dishes. You may eat there every day for up to 10 years and not be tired of the food. I know you don’t lack money. In fact, even if you don’t have money, go ahead and eat there for free. I don’t want your money.”
Su Dong Lou shook his head, “I understand that An Le Lou’s dishes are in fact, cousin-in-law’s dishes. However, I still wish to personally learn some skills. As you know, that person has no real love for ambition, money or position. The only thing he’s truly fond of is good food. I had once promised him that when we get to the Capital, I will ask cousin-in-law to make Buddha Jumps over the Wall for him. Who would have thought that we would be tied down by King Xiangyang’s schemes for so long? After finally rendering the King powerless, the agitation at the north erupted and we had to make our way there. This promise has gone unfulfilled for too long now.”
Su Nuan Nuan smiled, “Oh, that’s nothing. If you want it, I can personally make you a jar…”
“No, if it’s alright with cousin-in-law, I wish to learn to make it myself.”
Su Dong Lou eagerly cut in. When Su Nuan Nuan gave him a curious look, he scratched his head bashfully and laughed, “That is… I feel that… if I were to make it for him. Won’t he be happier? Surely he would understand my intention to sincerely and faithfully spend the rest of my days with him?”
“Pei! You’ve completely disgraced your parents.” the little marquis glared at Su Dong Lou resentfully. He finally understood the feelings described by the saying ‘Sympathize with Suffering, Indignant against Cowardice’.
“Wei! Can you please not be so excessive, ah?” Su Nuan Nuan frowned at her husband. “What’s the matter? Dong Lou merely fell in love with a man, didn’t he? Didn’t I tell you that there’s no logic to love? Are you saying that if I suddenly turned into a man tomorrow you’ll kick me out without hesitation?”
“Of course not.” Duan Tingxuan was shocked by this claim and hasten to assure Su Nuan Nuan of his loyalty.
“Well, that’s alright then, isn’t it?” Su Nuan Nuan spread out her hands. Her tone took on a lecturing mode as she said, “If possible, I’m sure Dong Lou would not wish to be saddled with these feelings, right? But what happened has happened, what’s to be done? True love should not be restricted by gender. In fact, there is even cross-species love within animal kingdom… ah, but as humans, we should not, ah, not go into such extremes.”
“What is cross-species love?”
The little marquis understood Su Nuan Nuan immediately after having gotten used to her rather modern way of speaking. So the question came from Su Dong Lou who appeared to be an eager student for Su Nuan Nuan’s cross-cultural love theories.
“Ahem,” said Su Nuan Nuan. “Let’s say Lu Feng Yu turned into a donkey, if you still love him and are still willing to spend the rest of your life with Donkey Lu, that’s called a cross-species love.”
[Gumihou: What the shit, Nuan Nuan! Don’t teach them these horrible things!]
At this, the two men flinched back in horror. Su Nuan Nuan flapped her hands at them and powered through her argument, “Anyway, anyway, just think. It’s more acceptable for Dong Lou to fall in love with Lu Feng Yu than to fall in love with a donkey, right? Right. So, don’t be angry anymore, ah, Tingxuan. You should rejoice over your blessings.”
The little marquis nodded out of reflex before senses got hold of him, and he shook his head vehemently, “What is there to rejoice about, ah? Are you saying that without Lu Feng Yu, Dong Lou could only love a donkey, a dog or a duck?”
“Oh, er…” Su Nuan Nuan had nothing to counter that. However, First Madam’s eloquence was unusually high, and a little thing like logic would not deter her. After all, how many people in this world could be compared to a transmigrator with a 21st century higher education ability? Right now, she was patting her husband on the back and laughing, “Alright, alright, anyway, what I was trying to say is that we can’t do anything about what happened in the past. Now that it’s clear that Dong Lou is not willing to back out from this love, we should help him realize his cherished dream. Let him achieve a good understanding with his, ahem, you know. Otherwise, if they become troubled, who do you think would be troubled in turn? Right? Do you really want him running over here every two or three days to lament over his lover?”
Su Dong Lou: … is this how you console someone?
Perhaps it was a force of habit of obeying his wife for over ten years now, but in the end, Duan Tingxuan reluctantly agreed to let Su Nuan Nuan meet Lu Feng Yu. She would be the best person to ascertain the other party’s true feelings towards this relationship. Once they knew the truth of his intentions, the three of them could come up with countermeasures against whatever tricks Lu Feng Yu might come up with.
Su Dong Lou felt as though a large rock had fallen off his heart. Moreover, Su Nuan Nuan’s enthusiastic support touched him in dearly. Finally, after setting an appointment to bring Lu Feng Yu over, he left the Marquis Estate.
Duan Tingxuan escorted him to the gates. On the way, he suddenly said, “You of all people should know how cunning that Lu Feng Yu is. I remember quite well that you said that you’ll merely treat him as a plaything, and would not be played by him. I trusted you then. However, now that you’ve fallen for him for real, I cannot be sure anymore. Men who are in love are not much cleverer than monkeys. Do you still dare to say that you can maintain your logic and not be led around by him?”
“I dare not say it.” Su Dong Lou sighed. Then, he looked straight at Duan Tingxuan and said, “But, you know, Tingxuan. It’s been many years. I’ve harboured these feelings for close to a decade now. If he wants to harm me, do you really think I’d have the strength to fight back? I’m at the point where I’d knowingly drink poison from his hand.
However, he never did anything. After ten years, he never tried to entrap or harm me. Why do you think I dared to bring him up before the two of you? I believe he has feelings for me, but for some reason, he refuses to admit it. For two years now, I’ve watched him grow more listless each day. He gets so depressed that I just can’t… the only time he shows any spirit was during meal times, but other than that…”
What Su Dong Lou had said was true. If that treacherous, venomous snake Lu had any intention of harming Su Dong Lou, the man would not be standing here before the little marquis. He would be dead in a ditch or worse. Therefore, aside from those two words, Duan Tingxuan really did not know what else to say. Suddenly, he noticed the other person looking around, making sure there was nobody nearby before coming over to whisper, “There’s something I don’t understand. Now that King Xiangyang has fallen, why is Imperial Concubine Jing still…”
Duan Tingxuan immediately understood his question, with a bitter smile, he said, “The dowager empress has already questioned Imperial Concubine Jing. She admitted to the matter, but explained that it happened when she had just entered the palace. She was too young and did not dare to resist when King Xiangyang coerced her. She even wanted to commit suicide, but dared not because King Xiangyang had her parents watched.
The dowager empress said that she believed Imperial Concubine Jing since they had gotten along together for so many years. Moreover, if either the emperor or the dowager empress punished Imperial Concubine Jing in secret, of course, the Fourth Prince would be angry. If he questioned the crown prince over this matter, how would the crown prince answer? Now that the matter had more or less solved itself, it’s better to just let it die a natural death and sweep it away. After all, maintaining a good relationship between the Crown Prince and the Fourth Prince is the most important thing.”
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com ~
“It’s been ten years since our last meeting. I must say that Teacher Lu looks even more scholarly and celestial like than ever. But, why do I get the feeling that you’ve gotten thinner? I swear you’re frailer than a leaf in autumn! Surely that rascal Dong Lou hadn’t press you down every night and depleted your strength through vigorous night exercise?”
Seeing Lu Feng Yu again brought up some complicated feelings in Su Nuan Nuan’s heart: It reminded her of the moment when she saw him for the first time. A not quite human creature, an immortal stepping out of a painting into the mundane world. However, just as Su Dong Lou had mentioned, he seemed ten times less spirited than before.
“As usual, you are very free with your mouth. You’re still the same as before, back in Jiang Nan. Don’t tell me you don’t guard your mouth here at the Marquis Estate?”
Lu Feng Yu smiled and shook his head affectionately. He harboured no ill will against Su Nuan Nuan. On the contrary, he was very happy to see his former cook again. After exchanging some casual talk about various events in their lives, Lu Feng Yu suddenly changed the subject and asked, “Did Su Dong Lou ask you to come over to make Buddha Jumps over the Wall for me?”
Su Nuan Nuan smiled, her eyebrows bouncing a little as she said, “Though I am a Marchioness now and can’t step casually into a kitchen due to my status. I came because Dong Lou pestered and begged me every day to come. So, here I am, to make a jar of Buddha Jumps over the Wall for Teacher Lu. Since I’m already here, I shall make two other new dishes as well and let you have a taste of my incredible culinary skills.”
Lu Feng Yu pressed his hands together and smiled winsomely, “Wonderful, wonderful. To think that rascal still remembers this little promise of ours. If I were to die, I shall leave this world happily.”
Su Nuan Nuan’s smile froze on her face. Not daring to believe what she had just heard, she said faintly, “Die? What are you talking about? Teacher… are you very ill? Is your illness untreatable? Why did Dong Lou never say anything about this to me?”
“Oh no, who says I’m ill?” this time, it was Lu Feng Yu’s turn to be surprised.
Su Nuan Nuan breathed a sigh of relief. Then, she frowned accusingly at him, “If you’re not sick, what’s all this nonsense? I really thought you might be sick. Though I’m not one to observe taboos or superstition, it’s not good to make jokes about your own death, you know? You can easily cause people to misunderstand you, ah.”
“There’s no misunderstanding.” Lu Feng Yu’s smile was free and a little wistful. “Do you not understand? This is my execution meal . The fact that that rascal Su Dong Lou would keep his promise and ask you to come and make it for me is enough. I’m more than happy to meet my maker after this meal.”
“E- execution meal?”
[Gumihou: Noooo… my precious baby Fengyu!!]
I don’t know who this is, but I imagine Fengyu looks a bit like him, kyaaa~
 The exact phrase is 断头饭, which translates to Head Detaching Meal or Execution Meal. In contrast ‘Last Meal’ is kind of lame and does not provoke the same sort of imagery. Which is why I decided to go with ‘Execution Meal’.
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Extra 4.2 – Let’s Gather Again, 10 Years Later
(The End! For real this time)
Cooking St – 39.1 Sashimi (a)
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Cooking St – 39.2 Sashimi (b)
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Cooking St – 39.3 Sashimi (c)
Cooking St – 39.4 Sashimi (d)
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Cooking St – 40 Sashimi (e)
Cooking St – 41 Sashimi (f)
Cooking St – 42 Sashimi (g)
Cooking St – 43 Sashimi (h)
Cooking St – 44 Sashimi (i) 35% edited
Sorry for the unedited version…