Chapter 7: Absolute Defeat
Translated by Prosperousfood dot com
Edited by Gumihou
Re-Host at kitchennovel dot com
“So what if the flavour spoils a little? If the three of us had not created that huge scene in the kitchen, we might not even have pig slop to dine on tonight. Eating something a little past its prime is nothing to us.” Su Nuan was unmoved as she watched Duan Tingxuan drink her cherry soup, the corner of her lips twitched.
Feeling that his wife’s temper was about to explode. Duan Tingxuan mentally braced himself, unfortunately, she did not fly into a rage as he had expected.
“Did you made these dumplings? When did a nobleman’s daughter like you learn how to make this? I heard that these are poor man’s food.” are you trying to compete and see who’s more in control of their emotions? Duan Tingxuan sneered, though he did felt that today’s Su Nuan Nuan was a little different from before… oh, it looked like her fighting spirit had been roused.
Su Nuan Nuan said blandly, “You could say I’ve taken a tour in hell, King Yama of the underworld personally grant me a special skill as an apology for snatching my soul before my time. En, he also gave me this free advice ‘The hearts of men are fickle, with my gift you shall not starve wherever you go.’”[Pang!] the little marquis’ perfect calm suffered another devastating blow, the mouthful of cherry soup he had just sipped sprayed all over the table. He glared at Su Nuan Nuan and said through gritted teeth, “Are you joking with this lord?”
“Well, I’m glad we have put away the dumplings.” Su Nuan Nuan majestically rose from her seat. “Xiang Yun, give this table a good wipe. It’s getting late, see our lord and master to the gates.”
Duan Tingxuan was sorely tempted to say, “I’ll only leave if you give me a bowl of dumplings.” In the end, however, he felt that these words would degrade his status too much and in the end suffered in silence. He gave Su Nuan Nuan a final, hateful glare, snapped his sleeves and sneered, “Good, you win this time. Let us see how long you can continue this farce, don’t think you can keep winning.”
“Since the situation is like this, unless you want me dead, I don’treally care what you do.” Su Nuan Nuan sneered at him, she purposely turned her back to the man and said in a loud voice. “Be on your way, my lord. This lowly one will not see you off.”
Hong Lian and Xiang Yun trembled as their wits finally returned to them, tears brimmed in their eyes as they clutched at Su Nuan Nuan’s sleeves, “Missy, you… you… how could you treat the master like this? What… what if we angered him…”
“So what if he’s angry? What could he do? The worst he could do is divorce me. The world is a wide place and we have all four limbs, do you really think we can’t support ourselves?” Su Nuan Nuan laughed coldly. Take my head off, stab me until I bleed, you may even withhold delicious food from me, however, if you wish me to bow my head to this kind of cheap man slut, I have only two words for you — Dream on!
“But, Missy, how could things be so easy? To think that on master’s rare visits…” Hong Lian still tried to persuade her, but Su Nuan Nuan merely waved her hand dismissively, “Enough, stop talking about him. It’s time to eat, don’t ruin my mood. Just how much of my dumplings have that slag eaten? Whatever, never mind, I don’t want to know, it’ll only spoil my mood.”
“Master, please don’t be angry. Madam is probably still bearing a grudge against you for the house arrest.” This was the first time Si Ping witness his dignified and charismatic master suffer such a great slap in the face. Even the crown prince did not possess such ability, ah. As he trotted behind his fuming master, Si Ping did his best to sooth the angry beast.
“House arrest? Do you really think that if I really want to put her under house arrest will she and those two maids of her have the chance to even set foot into the kitchen to make trouble? Just who does she think she is, throwing her temper about like that? Isn’t it just a few dumplings? Do you think I can’t survive without those things? Hmph! Who wants those common dumplings of hers?”
Duan Tingxuan was really angry, his belly seethed even as the fragrance of garlic chives and the juiciness of the meat filled dumplings soaked his brain. After stomping forward for a some time, he suddenly stopped.
He turned to Si Ping, “You! Didn’t you say that your mother also knows how to make these commoner dumplings? Have her make a few for me. Remember to fill them with garlic chives. Hah, does that woman really thinks that without her I can’t have dumplings?”
… who was the one who said ‘Who wants those commoner dumplings’? However, these words remained deep within Si Ping’s heart even as his mouth quickly agreed.
Personally, Si Ping thought that Su Nuan Nuan was really foolish for letting this rare opportunity to get into master’s good graces go. If she played her cards right and showed just the correct amount pitifulness and apologise prettily enough, she might even be on her way back to the Inner Court and resume her previous position like a phoenix rising from the ashes.
However, she had wasted her chance by further annoying the master instead. Tsk, tsk, since it’s like this, you better be prepared to spend the rest of your life in Mei Yue Lou for the rest of your life — while it’s sad to see such a high born lady living the life of an abandoned widow, well, who’s fault is that?
Fragrant smells drifted about the dining room. Upon the round table, exquisitely made dishes arrayed upon it like a dream. A bowl of pure white sugared congee sat like a calm pond in the middle of this offering. A spiral of steam rose gently above it, luring the eyes and beckoning one to come for a taste.
Xu Ran Yun sat to one side, smiling tenderly at her husband, who gave the table full of dishes a single glance before raising his head to say, “Is that all?”
The richly intelligent Xu Ran Yun felt her brain grated to a stop, she could not understand this sudden and random interjection from her husband.
“Are all the dishes out?” Duan Tingxuan continued in a way of explanation.
“Oh, yes. Did not my lord mention that you find the duck soup a little heavy and oily lately and wish for a light sugared congee?” Xu Ran Yun’s smile grew winsome, then she tilted her head, as though remembering something. An even warmer smile graced her lips and she said in a gentle voice, “That’s right, I had forgotten that my lord prefers milk congee best, how about we add a bowl of milk congee to the table?”
“No need.” Duan Tingxuan suddenly felt wretched. As the first born son of a rich and noble family, he had always been given whatever he wanted. To think that at the peak of his career and life he would be denied even a piece of his most desired garlic chive dumpling. How terribly miserable, how sad, how awful life is.
Nevertheless, he scooped up a spoonful of the sugared congee and put it into his mouth. A line appeared between Duan Tingxuan’s brows and he lowered the spoon saying, “Too sweet, have the price of sugar gone down?”
Xu Ran Yun really did not know what to say, she had noticed that her husband did not seemed to have much of an appetite these past three days, and have thus spent even more effort on her cooking. Who would have thought that the special duck dish from yesterday was judged too greasy? To compensate, she had prepared a whole table full of light dishes to tempted him. Even the sugared congee was something that Duan Tingxuan himself said he wanted, to think that it would be judge to be ‘Too sweet’. This is really just complaining for the sake of complaining, ah.
“My lord’s appetite has been a really poor these days. Just when did he become such a picky eater?” she understood that though her husband could be ruthless, he was not someone who would not talk sense.
“Is the Lord’s stomach very uncomfortable, and he had no appetite? Since when is he so picky about the food that he eats?” Xu Ran Yun knew her husband’s character. Though he can be heartless at times, he was still a man of reason. Thus, she decided to risk a move and sidled over to her husband’s side and picked up his bowl of congee. She took a sip of the congee and said with a little smile, “Does the congee really not taste good? If the sugar is any less how could it be called sweet any more? Does not my lord likes sweet things?”
 Have the price of sugar gone down? – is basically a sarcastic way of saying something has too much sugar in it. You can do the same with too salty food by saying, ‘Have the price of salt gone down?’