Chapter 128 Part 1 Dealing with Su Yuan in the Imperial Court

    Yun Qian Meng walked along with the two yatou as they passed through the long hallway and arrived at the women's courtyard. Perhaps the number of people in the Xiang Fu was too little, as the backyard seemed to be too quiet.

    "Furen, this way, please!" Seeing Yun Qian Meng slightly paused her steps, a cheerful girl among the group of yatou immediately called her attention. Her body was facing the direction of the courtyard, hinting to Yun Qian Meng to proceed to the correct direction so as to avoid making Yun Qian Meng to feel embarrassed.

    Knowing this servant girl of Xiang Fu was a clever one Yun Qian Meng nodded her head,r afterwhich she proceeded towards the direction pointed out by that yatou.

    As compared to the serenity of the front yard there were a lot of different kinds of rare plants being grown in the women's courtyard.Those plants were emitting faint sweet scents. Furthermore, being able to fully blossom during the cold winter season they were truly far away from Yun Qian Meng's expectation.

    Along with the two yatou slowly passing through the cobblestone road, walking through the southeast direction of the road with flowers and plants on both sides, a majestic and impressive courtyard appeared before Yun Qian Meng's eyes.

    Above that circular arched door in a red sandalwood horizontal inscribed board were these words written in bold style dark green ink, 'Meng Xin Zhu'. Bearing a speck of gentle sentiment Yun Qian Meng could not help but smile and ask "Is this the original name of this place?"

    The servant girl humbly smiled and responded sincerely "Furen, this place was initially the dwelling place of Xiang Ye which was called 'Zui Song Xuan'. Xiang Ye had instructed Steward Hong to revise it as 'Meng Xin Zhu' before he went to Luo Cheng."

    After speaking the two servant girls could not help but to open wide their eyes and observe Yun Qian Meng. Feeling that this furen was extremely beautiful, although she was cold but she was not someone who they could not get along with. In addition to the love and protection that Chu Fei Yang had towards Yun Qian Meng this made these two servant girls to be more respectful towards Yun Qian Meng. They stood on the both sides of the arched door while waiting for Yun Qian Meng to take the lead to step inside of 'Meng Xin Zhu'.

    Yun Qian Meng followed the path under her feet as she slowly passed through the arched door, stepping inside the courtyard that she was about to live into. The most eye-catching thing among the vast area of dark green was a tall cedar tree in the northeast side of the courtyard which was standing straight with its head high. It was simple, elegant, and lively, causing people to feel a deep veneration and having the most identical impression towards Chu Fei Yang.

    But beside that cedar tree were was some field mints growing,  that simple and unadorned wall was covered densely with branch by branch of field mint leaves and the fragrance of field mints freshened the heart. This very scent immediately floated around 'Meng Xin Zhu', making people to gain more spirit.

    "Furen, it is cold outside. Please go inside the room first!" The two servant girls seeing Yun Qian Meng was still standing on the same spot enjoying the scenery inside the garden, feared that Yun Qian Meng might catch a cold. Therefore, they immediately reminded her.

    Seeing them being cautious Yun Qian Meng did not make things difficult for them, by nodding her head she followed along the path which was leading to the room in center. This time a servant girl was already waiting by the door and seeing Yun Qian Meng's arrival she immediately bowed after which she lifted open the thick layer of curtain hanging by the doorway and waited respectfully for Yun Qian Meng to go inside.

    Upon stepping inside the room the warm air hit her in the face. This warm air was mixed together with the faint fragrance of the field mint. It must have been because  they  were using the leaves of the field mint in order to obtain the scent!

    But as compared to the strong scent used by xiaojies and furens  during their ordinary days were unlike this fragrance of the field mint which was quite unique. By smelling it people could feel very relaxed.

    "Within the Xiang Fu is the main kitchen the only place that is used for cooking?" Being reminded of the things that she promised to Chu Wang earlier, Yun Qian Meng turned around and asked the two servant girls.

    "Furen, few days ago Xiang Ye had ordered Steward Hong to assign people to build a kitchen in the northwest corner of the 'Meng Xin Zhu'. The things that were needed are complete. If Furen gets tired of the food in the main kitchen you can have your own food made in this kitchen." The servant girl pointed at the northwest direction and answered Yun Qian Meng's question clearly.

    Hearing the servant girl's explanation Yun Qian Meng gestured her to come near and whispered some names of the food beside her ears. After that she allowed her to leave and make necessary preparations while she herself continued to familiarize the surroundings inside the room.

    This was entirely different from the interior design of a lady chamber. Although Chu Fei Yang had already instructed people to renovate and add some of things that belonged to women, softening up the robust style of the room. However, with the long sword hanging on the wall and the whip on the table, it could be clearly seen that this room possessed the energy of an independent man.

    Being empty-handed she could not help but gently caress the extremely clean and shiny long sword. Yun Qian Meng slowly tried to adjust to Chu Fei Yang's life as her gentle eyes exposed a smiling expression, feeling very satisfied with the current surrounding.

    "My lady!" After the door  curtain was  lifted open Yun Qian Meng saw Mu Chun, Ying Xia, and the others. All four of them were led by the elderly of Chu Xiang Fu, Shang Guan Mama.

    Taking back her hand Yun Qian Meng simply smiled and while facing Shang Guan Mama she smiled and said "Thank you for being thoughtful, Mama."

    During the time when Chu Fei Yang was out Shang Guan Mama had made necessary arrangements inside the room based on Chu Fei Yang's instructions. The room was especially elegant which made Yun Qian Meng extremely satisfied and she ought to thank her for this.

    Shang Guan Mama had not expected Yun Qian meng to thank her like this and during this time she felt a bit uncomfortable. However, she was after all  an old Mama who had gone through a lot of trials and hardships therefore she immediately replied respectfully with a modest smile "Furen, please don't talk like that, it was part of nubi's duty."

    Upon speaking Shang Guan Mama waved her hand and gestured the servant girls waiting outside to come in and carry the trays in.

    "Furen, these are the account books for the expenditures inside Xiang Fu. Previously since Xiang Ye was still unmarried it was nubi and Steward Hong who took charge of managing the account books within this courtyard and the front yard. Now since furen is here we shall hand over everything to you." Hearing Shang Guan Mama's words and observing her facial expression without any feelings of  unhappiness Yun Qian Meng knew that she was an intelligent, honest, and considerate loyal person in Chu Xiang Fu. She knew how to perform her responsibility based on the situation and also knew how to interact well with other people.

    Yun Qian Meng nodded her head while facing Mu Chun she gesturing her to receive those thick account books, then she smiled and spoke "It must have troubled you a lot! But since I have to adapt to my responsibility as furen I am still not used to some of the things and  when the time comes I will still need Mama's guidance."

    "Nubi will serve furen with all her heart!" Shang Guan Mama was not surprised with her reaction. With her gentle gaze she looked at Yun Qian Meng as  she was certainly pleased with her.

    Yun Qian Meng simply smiled in response. The sky started to become a bit dark and they knew that the snow would be arriving one of these days. Chu Fei Yang and Chu Wang had already left for quite a long while and perhaps they will be back after a while. Yun Qian Meng untied the cloak in her body while allowing Yuan Dong to place it aside properly. She walked next to Shang Guan Mama and spoke in a light voice "Sorry to trouble you, Mama, but could you please lead Qian Meng towards the kitchen."

    Seeing Yun Qian Meng making  such request Shang Guan Mama was surprised as she finally realized why her master had instructed her to construct the kitchen. She immediately regained the surprised look in her eyes and nodded her head while smiling. She then supported Yun Qian Meng as they proceeded towards the nearby kitchen.

    Within the Chu Xiang Fu the servant girls and old women's actions were quite fast as before Yun Qian Meng arrived to the kitchen they had already washed clean the requested food and handled them appropriately while organizing them using plates and baskets. The servants all lined up in a row, waiting for Yun Qian Meng's arrival.

    "Greetings, Furen!" Seeing a woman had approached, all the people greeted her in a respectful manner and fully accepted her. Although she was quite young yet she was well-mannered. Yun Qian Meng was being cautious but not being boastful, while earnestly performing the things at hand, which made all of the servants to  admire her while feeling pleased with her.

    "Thank you for all of your hard work, everybody!" Stepping on the limestone bricks under her feet Yun Qian Meng took her steps adequately. The corners of her mouth were wearing a simple smile yet she keeping up with her status, containing an amiable smile on her beautiful face and her inherented air of nobility. Although she was amiable and approachable but at the same time she was  bearing a faint estranged feeling which caused people to subconsciously realize her identity and status and to not have the courage to make any unnecessary actions in front of her.

    "Furen, if you want to eat something there's no need for you to personally go to the kitchen. You may just instruct the kitchen to prepare the dishes for you. During this time the weather outside is extremely cold, please do not allow yourself to get cold." Having seen that Yun Qian Meng walked inside the kitchen and allowed Mu Chun and the others to lift up her sleeves, Shang Guan Mama was worried. After all this master is too noble in case if she got hurt from the sharp blades or got splashed by the scalding oils, perhaps Chu Xiang would get furious at them. Therefore she gave her earnest and well-meaning advice as she persuaded the madame.

    Yun Qian Meng just hooked up a smile. She did not pause or slow down in her actions by Shang Guan Mama's words. Instead she spoke to send Shang Guan Mama out of the kitchen "Mama, it's late now, please invite Xiang Ye and Wang Ye over here now."

    Shang Guan Mama watched Yun Qian Meng's proficient actions but her heart was still worried and she wanted to advise further yet she was being smiled at and pushed out by Mu Chun and Ying Xia. Mu Chun smile and said "Mama, don't worry too much, we will protect furen and not allow anything bad to happen."

    Seeing Mu Chun's smiling face Shang Guan Mama broke into a laughter. After which she instructed the female cooks to carefully protect Yun Qian Meng. She then lead the two servant girls who had served Yun Qian Meng earlier as they turned around and left.

    During this time inside the room Chu Nan Shan was pinching the letter paper as he carefully read through it. His eyes looked doubtful and then he shifted his gaze towards Chu Fei Yang, who was already sitting quietly handling the official documents. He then he spoke with suspicion "Is this really his letter? Why did he think of coming back all of a sudden?"

    Hearing him having asked Chu Fei Yang's eyes slightly shifted away from the accounts book in his hand and with knitted brows he coldly looked at Chu Nan Shan then spoke bluntly "Aren't you already aware of it? There is no need to pretend being surprised!"

    This time Chu Wang casted away his threatening manner. In an instant he shifted his attention away from Chu Fei Yang, then somewhat unnaturally coughed gently before he drooped down his shoulder and with a bit of sadness he said "I knew about this matter yet what's written in the letter is another matter. Does Meng yatou know about this matter?"

    Having heard what was said Chu Fei Yang gently nodded his head and since Yun Qian Meng's name was mentioned his eyes shown a bit of gentleness after which he spoke "So Yeye, you must get back to Wang Fu to make necessary preparations! My Xiang Fu wouldn't be able to entertain such noble guest!"

    Having an extremely cold manner of speaking it was quite lacking in regards to Chu Wang. Seeing him having no mood to discuss this matter he put away the letter then shifted the topic "It would be better to send off the people of Northern Qi as early as possible. It would be increasingly dangerous for Rui Wang to stay under their custody as time passed by. Now that Hai Tian has became Qi Jing Yuan's taifei, such kind of situation might become more severe and complicated in the future. And based on my observation the arrival of Qi Jing Yuan this time seemed not focused on the negotiation,but instead he only attended the feast from different official residences, not even visitin Hai Wang at the Hai Wang Fu, such kind of intention was truly unpredictable!"

    Yet Chu Fei Yang just grasped the writing brush beside his hand which was already dipped with the prepared ink writing some comments on the accounts book he had been holding since earlier, he said "No matter how deep they've hidden their intention. After a very long time it would still be exposed. There's no need to be mentally stressed about it, Yeye. Besides, there's no need for us to worry about the matters concerning Qi Jing Yuan. Surely being an anxious person as he is he would take the lead to mention about it. When the time comes even if His Majesty wanted to let them stay, they would definitely not stay."

    Hearing his grandson's analysis Chu Nan Shan nodded his head approvingly. However, in an instant his eyes stared at Chu Fei Yang radiantly as that tranquil and expressionless face half narrowed both of his eyes, then suddenly asked "Have you already found something?"

    Hearing his own grandfather's threatening voice Chu Fei Yang was unlike any other men who would lose their head out of fear. He was surprised but still remained unaffected. He set aside the accounts book which had already been settled and picked up another one which was lying besides it. He then replied indifferently "I don't know!"

    Qi Jing Yuan was quite a wise person. He was able to turn the tide when Hai Chen Xi while Hai Chen Xi was riding his momentum of success. Only such kind of person would be able to ascend into the position of Northern Qi's Crown Prince.

    If it was too easy for anyone to detect his intentions and goals then his position as the crown prince would not have remained for a long time.

    But what made Chu Fei Yang puzzled was the other emotion that contained in his eyes whenever Qi Jing Yuan looked at Yun Qian Meng.

    Such as the previous day inside the Chu Wang Fu. Meng'er had evidently offended Qi Ling'er but during that time Qi Jing Yuan, who was normally unyielding, had unexpectedly ignored the severity of the situation and just ended up leaving Chu Wang Fu. This had truly puzzled Chu Fei Yang and made him feel even more curious towards his goal and intention for coming here to Western Chu.

    Upon hearing his grandson's ruthless response, Chu Nan Shan was feeling annoyed. Thinking that with age, Chu Fei Yang was losing his child-like adorableness and sincerity. Currently he had learned how to keep things from his grandfather which caused Chu Nan Shan to feel very resentful. He was about to speak due to being unconvinced when he heard a delicate and gentle sound of footsteps outside. After a while the door opened and Shang Guan Mama's voice resounded "Wang Ye, Xiang Ye, furen has requested both of you to proceed to 'Meng Xin Zhu'."

    "What had happened?" Upon hearing the word Chu Fei Yang stopped the things that he was doing and then he discovered that the originally bright sky had unknowingly became gloomy. He placed aside the writing brush and accounts books while approaching the doorway he opened the carved wooden door and asked Shang Guan Mama.

    Seeing her own master being quite nervous Shang Guan Meme just plainly smiled and replied "Furen is now in the kitchen preparing the dinner meal for Wang Ye and Xiang Ye. She  especially has instructed nubi to invite the two of you to go over there."

    Before Shang Guan Mama could finish what she wanted to say, she felt a whirlwind swept beside her. When she turned around to look again she noticed that Chu Wang had already disappeared and Chu Fei Yang was walking past her with slightly knitted brows while chasing after Chu Wang's shadow. Their speeding up  towards 'Meng Xin Zhu' was quite funny. Shang Guan Mama carefully closed the door and she turned back.

    "Hmm, smells delicious! For a short period of time of not seeing each other, this Meng yatou's culinary skills had improved!" When Chu Wang just set his foot inside 'Meng Xin Zhu' his extremely sensitive nose had smelled the sweet fragrance of the dishes floating along the courtyard. Unable to restrain himself he started to praise her.

    And just when Chu Nan Shan halted his steps Chu Fei Yang had already crossed over his own grandfather while advancing towards the direction of the kitchen.

    During this time it was already jam-packed with servant girls and old women outside the door of the kitchen. They were utterly curious about the good things that their furen had made. Since the sweet smelling aroma was all over the place, hooking all the people's appetite, as they set aside the work at hand. One by one they ran over here to look into the matter.

    "Why are you all gathered here? Furen is working here yet you are all here being lazy. Don't you want to get your rewards by the end of the year?" This time following behind Chu Nan Shan and Chu Fei Yang Shang Guan Mama seeing this situation she immediately shouted in a stern voice which frightened the servant girls as they immediately turned around. However what they saw was Chu Wang and Chu Xiang behind them. Their faces looked alarmed as they quickly bowed down before the two of them.

    "That's enough you may all go now!" Chu Nan Shan's attention had been attracted by the delicious food inside the kitchen. Obviously he was not in the mood to handle these servant girls. Therefore while waving his hand he gestured them to retreat out of the room.

    Chu Fei Yang's eyes were focused on the slim figure inside. And since it was already dark outside the candle lights were already lit inside the kitchen. Under the reflection of the faint yellow candle light the beautiful figure of Yun Qian Meng had given him a warm and comfortable feeling of home in Chu Fei Yang's heart. No need to say out loud that the thing he had been seeking for for almost half of his life was such feeling of comfort that was actually present right in front of his eyes at this very moment.

    At this moment Yun Qian Meng seemed to have sensed the passionate gaze fixated on her and despise being busy she lifted her head to see Chu Fei Yang gazing steadily at her. While giving a smile she said "Are you hungry? We can eat after a short moment!"

    With a simple question that was normally heard in the daily life it had brought warmth to Chu Fei Yang's heart. After which he also smiled. Lifting up his leg he prepared to set his foot inside the kitchen yet he was being blocked by Yun Qian Meng "This place is not big enough, don't come in and cause trouble."

    There were already five people inside the kitchen. If Chu Fei Yang was to come inside, perhaps it would be somewhat difficult for them to move around.

    After having heard what Yun Qian Meng said Chu Fei Yang did not set foot inside the kitchen, instead he just leaned on the door frame. His eyes filled with deep emotions while staring at her figure.

    Chu Nan Shan was somehow unable to resist shaking his head.  Seeing that the sky had turned darker he instructed Shang Guan Mama to add some more lamps in the courtyard so as avoid to avoid bumping to each other while walking. He then advanced toward the side room to wait for the dinner to be served.

    After a short while a lot of steaming hot delicious food were arranged on the table before Chu Nan Shan and Chu Fei Yang. Due to it being the  winter season in order  to keep the food hot for a longer duration of time Yun Qian Meng used ceramic pots and casserole to contain the food.

    Seeing all the delicious vegetables and meat dishes in front of him and with the fragrance which was assailing the nostrils with the smell of food which was still piping hot, Chu Wang actually had no idea where to start!

    "Yeye, these dishes are boiled cabbage, tianyuan stir-fry, simmer-fried eggplants, white radish roasted meat, carp with scallion, and chicken ginseng soup." Seeing Chu Wang was unable to settle down his chopsticks on the dishes Yun Qian Meng introduced the dishes based on their taste and color. She stated them in order starting from the light flavored dishes to the strong flavored dishes. Chu Nan Shan tried the food according to the order as stated by Yun Qian Meng, after which he nodded in satisfaction.  However the chicken ginseng soup was left untouched by him. Since Chu Nan Shan was used to eating such sort of food during the usual days, it resulted into this chicken ginseng soup seemingly less appetizing than compared with other dishes in front of Chu Nan Shan.

    And being the exact opposite of Chu Nan Shan, Chu Fei Yang had first settled on this chicken ginseng soup. He used his chopsticks to tear open a piece of tender chicken meat and to his surprise he found that the belly of the chicken was actually stuffed with a lot of other food. He carefully enumerated the things he found inside as it contained glutinous rice, wolfberries, red dates, mushrooms, chestnuts and other seven or eight kinds of spices. No wonder this chicken ginseng soup smelled extremely fragrant, as it turned out, the answer to this riddle was all inside the belly of the chicken. Using a ladle to scoop out the food inside he then put it into his mouth. This dish was  mixed with the fragrance of the chicken meat and with a bit of sweetness it really shook up people's appetite.

    Watching Chu Fei Yang having a great time eating Yun Qian Meng's eyes filled up with a smile of satisfaction. After which she sat beside him and lifted her own bowl and chopsticks to quietly eat.

    Yet, Chu Nan Shan had discovered that Chu Fei Yan was only staring at that chicken ginseng soup in front of him. He lifted his eyes and discovered that the entire chicken was actually filled with treasures inside. For a moment he threw other dishes aside and directly attacked the chicken ginseng soup. However, Chu Fei Yang refused to permit him to get away with it and the two of them started fighting each other at the dining table.

    "Chu Fei Yang, don't you know how to respect the elder?" Fighting for almost half a day Chu Nan Shan fiercely glared at Chu Fei Yang who was grabbing the chopsticks tightly in his hand.

    "Yeye, you need to learn how to love the young!" But as the grandson, Chu Fei Yang answered back after he spoke. He lifted the chopsticks up and took a piece of that tasty and tender chicken meat. After that he slowly put it inside his mouth.

    After swallowing it down Chu Fei Yang then said "Five courses of dishes in exchange for this dish, plus an overnight stay here. They are really worthwhile for you, aren't they, Yeye?"

    Hearing Chu Fei Yang's words Chu Wang was caught up in the dilemma. However, thinking about five against two, it seemed quite advantageous for him. Knitting up his brows he retreated his hand, without consulting anyone and swept through those five dishes, swallowing them all down into his belly.

    Yun Qian Meng secretly shook her head feeling that Chu Fei Yang really knew how to deal with everything. The time of preparation for those five dishes was still nothing compared to the chicken ginseng soup in front of his eyes. This time Yeye Chu Wang had a huge loss.


Previous Index Next