Chapter 41 Sashimi (f)
Translated by Ultra
Edited by Gumihou
“Who is this Liu Yi?”
“An insignificant worm,” Shiyu answered carelessly.
“Alright,” Lin Fan nodded.
Feng Luo could only sigh at their casually dismissive behaviour.
Perhaps seeking to change the subject, Shiyu said, “By the way, as someone more familiar with the Imperial City, do you know if there are any chefs here who are famous for their knife work? I’d appreciate it if you could introduce me to them, ah.”
“Knife work?” Feng Luo thought for a while. “Well, I can’t be sure, if that person is the best, but the cafeteria chef’s knife work is quite good. It’s rumoured that he could cut radishes into wide paper-thin strips , but I haven’t actually seen this with my own eyes yet.”
“The cafeteria is it?” Shiyu nodded: Alright, let’s go there later.
After lunch, Lin Fan and Feng Luo collected the cutleries and went off to do the dishes while Shiyu excused herself to freshen up.
That was when San Pang came trotting into the kitchen to look for food. At the sight of Fat Cat basking in the sun by the kitchen window, he ran upstairs and burst into Shiyu’s room, wailing, “How dare you pet  others when you have me?!”
Shiyu expertly caught the wailing radish with one hand and chucked him into the flowerpot. “Who’s pet are you? I don’t remember wanting a petty thing like you? I’d rather have a petunia as a pet plant.”
San Pang’s head popped up from the flowerpot. He spat out potting soil and muttered , “This miserable pet could see that clearly… ”
Shiyu rummaged through her space ring and took out a jade box she had bought from the market earlier just to store rare and precious medicinal plants. She has plenty of those now, so having more boxes and keeping the mature plants there would not be a bad idea. It also looked better than just handing over a plant still covered in soil to sell.
She had done the same thing when she handed the Immortal Jade Petal Lotus  over to Feng Luo last time. The silver he had bankrolled her at the auction house as well his presence and authority as a member of the Feng Clan also smoothed out whatever problem that might have come up, a favour one could not be easily measured with money. 
At the sight of the jade box, San Pang thought she was going to bring out the Immortal Jade Petal Lotus and threw himself at her, “You love me after all! You must love me better than that cat! Gimme that Jade Lotus now and I’ll call you father! Father! ”
With a practised smack, the enthusiastic radish flew head over heels and landed right into the flowerpot again.
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com ~
Downstairs, Feng Luo and Lin Fan had cleaned up and were now chatting idly at the table.
When Shiyu finally came down, Lin Fan stood up. He bowed formally at Shiyu and said, “Thank you for the meal, it’s been a pleasure working with you.” He hesitated, but then continued on, “About the remuneration for your friend… ” he was not sure whether he should bring up the Immortal Jade Petal Lotus in front of Lin Fan.
“Oh, I should think that we’re more or less square now,” Shiyu smiled. “You’ve helped me out a lot by coming to my rescue during the auction. Excellent service by the way.”
Still, Lin Fan hesitated. He said carefully, “The market value for the item is over 10 million silver teals, one could say it could easily double that with the right buyers. My family don’t lack silver, though I don’t have that much on my person now. I should at least send your friend another 10 million.”
“My friend is not short of money either,” Shiyu said. “However, rather than more money, they would rather have more friends.”
In the end, Feng Luo was not able to persuade Shiyu to take more money. Finally, he said, “The Feng Clan owes your friend a great favour. If they encounter any difficulties in the future, the Feng Clan will do our best to provide assistance.”
“That would be most helpful,” Shiyu said, having a powerful clan owe her a favour has to be more useful than mere silver.
“I have taken up enough of your time.” Feng Luo cupped his hands before him in a formal salute. “Thank you again for the excellent lunch, it’s been a great pleasure.”
“One other thing,” Shiyu said, she had overlooked this earlier when she carelessly handed the Immortal Lotus to Feng Luo, not realising the true worth of the Arcane Grade items. Seeing how crazy people became at the mention of ‘near Arcane Grade’ finally drove home just what kind of treasure she really has in her hand. “The one thing my friend hates most is trouble. Therefore, I must ask that you never disclose where you got the… item from .”
‘Brocade and Silks Moves the Hearts of People. ’ Feng Luo has proven himself to be trustworthy thus far, but people could change. Furthermore, Feng Luo has the weakness in the form of Meng Li and who knows what kind of pressure the elders of a powerful clan could put on their younger generations. 
Feng Luo must have caught the underlying sense of seriousness and unease in her voice. He stood very straight and swore, “Should I ever reveal this secret, my body will explode and I shall die a bloody, corpse-less death.”
As soon as he finished speaking, a drop of blood appeared from between them and flew towards Shiyu forehead. Too surprised to say anything, Shiyu just let it happened. When she touched her brow, it was perfectly dry.
“A blood oath,” Lin Fan said, his expression stiff as he stared intently at Feng Luo. This unexpected action had clearly startled him as well.
Shiyu had no idea what a blood oath really was, but having the words ‘blood’ and ‘oath’ together seemed ominous enough. Also, from Lin Fan’s reaction and Feng Luo’s ‘shall die a bloody and corpse-less death’ made it all seemed… very serious.
“It’s been good to meet you. You as well, Young Master Lin Fan.” Feng Luo said once again, his expression serene. As though he had never mentioned anything about ‘dying from an explosion’. “I shall take my leave first.”
Still a little stunned, Shiyu waved good-bye to him.
Once the tall figure of Feng Luo left their gates, Shiyu sighed with relief… a little too early it seemed because Lin Fan was now looking at her in that impassive way of his.
Shiyu coughed, feeling a little guilty for some reason, “I met him on the way to the Imperial Capital along with that Liu Yi character,” and proceeded to tell Lin Fan a summarized version of the whole sordid tale. She revealed that the ‘item’ in question was the Immortal Jade Petal Lotus. He’s the protagonist, after all, she could trust him that much. Maybe, he would place more importance on her if he knew she could get her hands on stuff like that. 
“Things happened more or less like that. That Feng Luo owes me , that’s the reason why he’s been helping me. I think he’s not a bad person.”
Lin Fan pursed his lips, “Indeed, he’s not bad. To be able to swear a blood oath means he’s a man with a clear conscience. Moreover, he swore it on his spirit. If he breaks this oath, the backlash he’ll suffer will be immense.”
Oh, there’s such a convenient oath in this world?
“However, you really should be more careful. What if this Feng Luo suddenly decided to betray you? Though he might not do it intentionally, this Liu Yi character has many followers, what if they decide to have you dealt with? Have you ever thought of the consequences?” Lin Fan felt that he had to voice out his concerns.
“I’ve considered all this before, but I’ve honed my ability to run away and am confident that I could escape from these people regardless of what tricks they have. I was prepared to run away anytime. If these people can’t hurt me, why should I not try to get along? It’s not like I’m trying to establish any real relationship, but it’s never a bad idea to get along with others.” Shiyu defended her actions half-heartedly.
It is said that in the face of absolute strength, deception, backstabbing, traps and outright lies are useless.
Unfortunately, her power now was nothing close to ‘absolute strength’. The only thing she could hope to do was flee and preserve her life.
“Have you approached me with the same thought?” asked Lin Fan.
“No, ah. I think you’re different from them.” Shiyu said, beaming up at him. She was particularly anxious to assure him. She already knew that he’s trustworthy, and did not have to pussyfoot around him. As the book had described, this guy’s character and strength were both excellent. He’s the very important and stable thigh she must hug.
For some reason, Lin Fan blushed at this.  She blinked as he suddenly looked away, unable to meet her eyes as he said, “Yes!  Good. Of course. I’m going to Cultivate now.”
Shiyu was speechless: If you want to go Cultivate, be my guest, ah. Surely you don’t have to tell me?
Lin Fan dashed off, leaving her alone in the living room. But not for long, San Pang scooted in, despair in his voice as he clambered onto Shiyu’s shoulder and grabbed her hair. He wailed into her ear , “My Immortal Lotus! You’ve given it to that man, I knew it! How could you? How could you be so cruel!? ”
Shiyu glared at the wailing radish from the corner of her eyes and sneered, “If you pull off a single strand of hair off this old lady’s head. We shall have Sliced Radish Salad tonight. ”
Frightened, San Pang immediately let go.
Shiyu flicked her finger lightly against San Pang’s forehead, “There is no such thing as a free lunch in this world. If you want something, you must be prepared to pay for it.”
San Pang nodded quickly, he bowed very low, “I can wash your sheets every day.”
Before Shiyu could answer, a different voice said,  “I heard that the essence of a century-old Radish Demon makes very good tonic. I supposed it won’t lose in terms of value against something like the Immortal Lotus.”
The voice came from her other shoulder. Shiyu finally noticed the warm weight, as well as the flicker of a furry tail against her back. Fat Cat’s long whiskers tickled her cheek when she turned to check with her eyes what her body and ears had already registered: Just when did this cat manage to get onto her shoulder?
However, since this cat was the supreme deity she had to appease, Shiyu decided not to comment.
When she said nothing, San Pang tentatively inquired, “Exactly… how much essence do you require?”
The furry tail flickered, Shiyu swore she saw the cat smirked, “You’ll have to sit in boiling water for a whole day, every day, for 49 days.”
San Pang’s little arm went to his head in a classic ‘swooning’ position. “I- I am feeling a little dizzy. I shall take my leave first. Please, take your time here…”
With that, he fled the scene.
[Gumihou: I’ve been looking forward to this scene since it’s meant to explain the motive for FL’s odd streak of helpfulness. As expected, it felt abrupt and tacked on. Please see Note: 4 for more details]
 This technique is called the ‘katsuramuki’, and Japanese chefs are supposed to be able to do it as part of their basic skills. =.= Gumihou is not impressed, it’s the basic of basics to become pro Japanese chef…
 Pet – this one is a bit tricky to translate. The word for ‘pet’ in Chinese comes in two parts ‘chong wu’, with ‘chong’ being spoilt’ and ‘wu’ being creature or animal. So, ‘spoilt creature’
I decided to go down the punny road and it’s all dad jokes galore…
 Observation: I’m… not exactly sure what San Pang’s character is like? He’s both pompous and spoilt, tends to sleep a lot, is disrespectful and bursts into fits of irrationality. I’m surprised neither Feng Luo nor Lin Fan is shown to notice him yet. The plan is to downplay his ‘!’ for the moment and see what happens later.
 Major plot change details: Okay, I’ve kind of been waiting for this scene, the handing over of the Jade Lotus thingy. I basically deleted the ‘handing over’ and repurpose the parts where Feng Luo ‘thank Shiyu’ to ‘thank Shiyu once again’ to show his gentlemanly person before Lin Fan. Here’s the deleted portion if anyone’s interested
“ Shi Yu stood on the stairs, calling to him: “Feng Luo!” When Feng Luo looked up at her, she threw the jade box she was holding, “Here!”
Feng Luo reached out his hand, easily catching the jade box, with some doubt on his face. Seeing Shi Yu gesturing to open it, he raised the lid.
When the jade lotus inside appeared in his sight, his pupils shrank, and he said in shock, “The Jade Petaled Immortal Lotus?”
“Yes.” Shi Yu had already come down from the stairs at this point, “You helped me so much before, so this is my thanks.”
Feng Luo took a deep breath, trying to calm down his mood. In fact, he had known that such a day would come when he was back at the auction house, but now that he had really gotten his hands on this thing, he couldn’t help but be ecstatic.
 I… am not sure where the author is going with this, but the joke seems a bit… forced? The dialogues don’t seem to do anything but provide comic relief, so… I decide to take some liberties with it
“You finally listened to your conscience and decided to give me this Immortal Lotus! My parent, afterwards you’ll be my parent!”
 Brocade and Silks Moves the Hearts of People – Money and valuables make people greedy.
 Additional details re prevention of OOC: The reason for making FL promise seemed a bit weak, so I gave it more detail to suit what happened next.
‘The best thing to do was to remove herself from this matter.’
The above line seems more ‘troublesome…’ than ‘oh god, I might die!’, so I gave her more reasons to be worried.
 Structural change: Show don’t tell, show don’t tell… but I did keep the ‘!’
‘But Lin Fan obviously misunderstood her meaning, “Alright! Then I’ll go Cultivate.”’
 Structural observation: I might have found the pattern for the ‘!’. Anytime Shiyu and San Pang has a scene, she was supposed to turn into a crazed bitch? So, she lost control facing the wailing weak? What is this bit of characterisation? I’m going to observe this phenomenon some more.
 Structural change: At first, I thought Shiyu said this, but then the dialogue was followed by the cat appearing from nowhere… So, I flipped the dialogue tag forward and explained the cat’s presence in the following paragraph.
 Logistical change: Also, author-san was unclear about San Pang having clambered onto Shiyu’s shoulders until after the cat appeared ‘on her other shoulder’, so some logistical fixing here.
If you love my translations, do consider putting a review at novelupdates!