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28 Lost in thought, with delicious food

    As the fire was burning, the giant bird was impaled with a stick and put over the fire to roast. The roasting took a while, and Xue'er watched Gan Tian Chi the meat of the bird. As spices were sprinkled over the fire, it let out a few crackling sounds, and the fragrant scent of the roasted meat permeated the air.

    Xue'er watched his every movement as if she was already planning to do the same thing the when she would travel alone. She watched him slowly rotate the roasted meat effortlessly.

    "I didn't know you cooked?" Xue'er said as she threw him a questioning glance.

    What she wondered was why he didn't prepare such foods when she had just met him last year.

    He gave her an enchanting smile: "You will find out many things in time." He said as he got back to work, rotating the meat over the burning flames, making sure that each part of the flesh had an equal distribution of heat.

    Of course, although Gan Tian Chi looked like he had just tossed the meat over a burning pit of fire and was effortlessly cooking a delicacy without thinking much of it, in truth, he had put in a long time to perfect his techniques.

    The fragrant smell wafted into the air, but the wind was not too strong, thus the smell of perfectly roasted meat did not spread too far and did not attract many animals.

    It seems that Gan Tian Chi had picked the perfect place to cook the meat. Xue'er did not have much to do, so she laid back on the soft grass to watch his every move in cooking.

    [Could this be applied to other dishes of food?] She wondered in silence.

    She then became lost in thought, thinking of her past experiences, growing up in the place called the forbidden ground, running away only to be picked up by the boy named Gongsun Leng, then she left again and met Gan Tian Chi. He was a very mysterious man that she knew nothing about, but yet she followed anyway to the underground maze, where she stayed for a year without seeing sunlight until she left again. Now, she was in this place, that was so calming that she never wanted to leave again.

    [Life was like a journey, there would be snowstorms, rainstorms and even hail on your unpredictable journey, but there would always be a time when the sun shined brightly, warming your entire body up.]

    Her lips gave way to a slight smile that crept upon her face, her eyes were closed, the smile on her face made it seem as if she had been lost in her own fairytale. Her fingers crept into her bag, as she gently ran her cold fingers over the indentations on the bronze tablet.

    [I wonder how he has been?

    Would he still know who I am if I stand in front of him?

    Or has he forgotten?]

    The thoughts raged madly within her mind trying to devour her. She thought more about the big picture, he is a high ranking noble that came from a family that had major contributions to the Eastern Jin Kingdom, besides, his uncle loves him very much.

    She affirmed her beliefs and dismissed those strange thoughts that were building up in her mind. She silently meditated, before returning to the state of heart and mind as clear and calm as water.

    "Phew." She let out a breath, as she rolled over to her other side, it was as if she was sleeping on a comfortable bed. The soft grass was truly too comfortable, Gan Tian Chi really knew how to pick the best places when they were traveling outdoors. She should learn from him.

    Now, she thought of that grandfather of hers, the last time she heard from him, was through his servants, who said that he had been arrested for causing the death of the emperor's favored consort during her birth.

    [Impossible! Grandfather could never mess up on a small matter such as a birth. She knew him well and she was certain that such complications could easily be handled by him.

    But what happened to him?]

    She contemplated for a while, before remembering a certain rule of all the Kingdoms within the land: The emperor can sentence anyone to death.

    [Does causing the death of his favored consort count as a reason?

    He would most likely be sentenced to death by the emperor by now.]

    Thinking about this, she sighed a breath of relief, she was inwardly thinking how she would be free from him, forever.

    She would never be able to see him again.

    But she didn't wish to see his face again.

    In truth, she had never regarded him as family, although he was the one she was with for most of her life, she treated him more as a teacher.

    She called him grandfather because that was the only thing he told her about himself. And she lived with it.

    Even though he was the one who raised her, he was also the one that brought her endless pain.

    But it was he who met her through a miraculous fate, he brought her home and taught her the highest boundaries of medicine to ever exist.

    She should be grateful, right?

    "Time to eat." The warm voice called out to her.

    Xue'er opened her eyes to see Gan Tian Chi handing her a giant drumstick that he had just tore off the bird he had been roasting.

    Just the spicy fragrance with a tinge of sweetness was enough to make a person drool over it.

    She parted her lips and took a small bite, in an instant she was hit with the delicious taste of the well-roasted meat seasoned to perfection with a variety of herbs spices.

    Within no time, the drumstick had been gnawed on till it became white bones. She looked towards Gan Tian Chi, who slightly chuckled as he cut a piece of flesh from his roast and gave it to her.

    Xue'er continued chomping on the roasted meat as if her body was a bottomless pit and what went in could barely fill her up.

    Perhaps this was the most decent meal she ever had.
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