Chapter 205: Strike Like Lightning

 

Translated by Gumihou

Please read this at kitchennovel dot com

 

The married woman looked over at Nuan Nuan with a smile and said, “These aren’t our local plants. If missus is interested, we can go out and have a look.”

With that, she ushered both Duan Tingxuan and Su Nuan Nuan to the corner where the seedlings were flourishing brightly. “My husband brought these back some time ago, said they are called Fire Peppers from the Western Countries. It’s so far away that the boat had to sail for months before touching its shores. He had only been once, and the only thing he brought back is this.

He said that even though it tasted terrible, it is good for warming up the body during winter. For a few winters now mother and I tried to put a little bit in our food, but we just couldn’t take it. Finally, we just stopped eating this thing. After all, we’ve survived all other winters before he brought those abominations back. However, since my husband really enjoyed its taste, every year, he would take a bunch with him to sea, said it is good against the cold sea air. That’s the only reason why I keep planting them. Since I’ve never taken them out to sell, it should be no surprise that missus has never seen them before.”

Su Nuan Nuan was so touched that tears shone in her eyes: It’s chilli, ah. It’s hot chilli peppers. After more than a year of transmigrating into this ancient world, how much had she missed this flavour? Now that it had suddenly appeared before her, she could not stop her tears from flowing.

At the sight of her teary eyes, the woman grew anxious, “What’s wrong? Missus, you’re too close to the plants, look, your eyes are all teary. I normally just ignore them, who knows whether this batch is especially devilish this year. Let’s leave quickly. You can have a cooling towel and some tea in my room.”

Su Nuan Nuan stood up, and nodded. “So, it’s Fire Peppers seedlings. I’m afraid you just don’t understand them. They’re actually quite delicious. Do you have any matured ones? If you do, could you sell them to me?”

Both the mother and daughter-in-law pair were surprised. Who would have thought that someone would actually hand out money for these horrible things? Smiling, she said, “I probably have about two or three catties of the matured ones. Once those things are dried on a string, they actually looked quite pretty. If missus likes them, I can gift them to you. After all, neither I nor mother eats them.”

With that, she entered her house and carried out two long strings of dried, bright red chillies. She handed them to Su Nuan Nuan with a smile, “These are all picked last year. Please take them.”

Su Nuan Nuan was so touched she really did not know what to say. She could only nod gratefully: This was it. This was the chilli peppers that she had been craving all year long. In this era, in the absence of super spicy peppers like Ghost Peppers [1] and Infinity Pepper [2], this type of chilli peppers was considered quite spicy. She reached out and pulled out one of the peppers. The bright red fruit felt light in her hand, having been dried, it rattled a little as when she shook it. That must be the precious white seeds inside. Su Nuan Nuan could not resist breaking it open right in front of others. She was about to taste a small section when the little marquis, with hands like lightning, snatched up a whole pepper from the string and stuffed it quickly into his mouth and chewed vigorously.

 

[Gumihou: … you want to die?]

 

For a moment, Su Nuan Nuan’s mind went blank. It was like the moment when you see a stupid TV character open a door you know shouldn’t be opened; when they run upstairs instead of downstairs; when you know, without a shadow of doubt, that a tragedy was about to happen. No, not a tragedy, a calamity. The moment when the tsunami’s wave arc at its highest point… [3]

Reflected in her eyes, she saw everything in slow motion. Duan Tingxuan throwing the chilli pepper into his mouth. Duan Tingxuan, the fearless and powerful little marquis, chewing a whole mouthful of chilli pepper. Duan Tingxuan, with a meme perfect ‘It was at this moment that he knew he fucked up’ expression… [3]

Quite suddenly, things sped up again. Duan Tingxuan’s face turned red so suddenly that it looked like it had gone up in flames. He spat out the chilli peppers and wiped his tongue with his sleeves. From the looks of it, it was almost like he was attempting to pull his tongue out and wring whatever chilli juice out of it.

“Water, quick, drink some water.”

To be fair, it was not like Su Nuan Nuan had baited the little marquis to make fun of him. This person’s movements were just too fast. By the time Su Nuan Nuan had realized what happened, he was already chewing his way to doom. This time, he really had struck a huge calamity. The woman, in her rush, brought out a cup of still steaming tea. The moment Su Nuan Nuan noticed and shrieked, “Not hot water!” the little marquis had already burned himself the second time in so many seconds.

As to what happened next. Well, there was a lot of hacking, and spitting and surely there’s no need to talk about all that?

In conclusioin, the moral of today’s story was: Sometimes, it’s just not good to be too fast with your hands, or mouth. Duan Tingxuan served as a living lesson today. If he had not been so fast with his hands, he would not have suffered such a great calamity. After a long while later, the little marquis finally managed to dampen the fire in his mouth a little. He squatted in place with tears flowing down his face in twin forks and his numbed tongue hanging out. Not only his tongue, but his entire mouth felt as though it had been set on fire. The little marquis was really worried that his whole mouth, aside from the two lines of teeth, had been scraped out.

“Hahaha…” seeing her husband’s miserable, ‘Suffering Devastation’ look, Su Nuan Nuan suddenly began to laugh. Her husband cast a miserably angry look at her, “Dear wife, I’m already suffering to this point, how could you still laugh?”

“Serves you right! Who asked you to be so fast with your hands? Snatching unknown things and stuffing them into your mouth like a toddler when even the missus here had already said that these things tasted quite terrible.” Su Nuan Nuan effortlessly reigned in her laughter as she fished out a handkerchief for him, “Alright, wipe your eyes. Really, people would think I bullied you to tears.”

“How could I be crying? That’s absurd, these tears are just unstoppable.” Duan Tingxuan muttered as he patted his eyes with the handkerchief. He glared at the strings of bright red chilli peppers and snarled, “Just what are those evil things? I still can’t feel anything in my mouth. It’s even more horrible than Sichuan Peppers [4]. Pei! Pei! Just look at their bright red colour, so disgustingly flamboyant and alluring. To think that it’s only gilded with gold and jade on the outside and is actually all rotten inside. How could you treat such a horrible thing like a trerasure? To even send people out to track them down…”

“Who ask you to eat a whole piece like that? I’m telling you now, this is good stuff, you’ll know it later.” From what Su Nuan Nuan knew of the Duan family and the rest of the Dayin Dynasty people’s taste, these chilli peppers would one day take the culinary world in a storm. Don’t believe me? Well, just a glance at the merchant’s accounts and you’d know just from the annual sales of mustard seeds and Sichuan Peppers that the people actually love spicy flavours. The only thing that’s missing was the ultimate spicy contender, the Chilli Pepper.

“What do you mean later?” Duan Tingxuan’s face was comically horrified. “Please just throw them away. I’ve already suffered enough for this lifetime. Surely there’s no need to punish me again? Do I looked like someone who don’tlearn from his mistakes?” The little marquis gave the chilli peppers an evil glare, clearly rejecting their existence from the bottom of his heart.

“Don’t be in such a hurry to reject them, ah. Otherwise, you’ll grow fat from eating your words [5].” Su Nuan Nuan said cheerfully, picking up a string of the dried chilli peppers to caress it fondly. She reached into her chest pocket and withdraw two silver teals and said to the woman, “Since you really don’t like them, I shall take them. Do you want any of the seeds?”

The woman laughed, “Aren’t these seedlings all growing well here? These things grow very fast, even though I only have a few now, by the time the seventh month roll by, I’ll have another string of these.” She picked up the silvers and shoved it back into Su Nuan Nuan’s hand and said firmly, “It’s thanks to you that mother came back safely despite her injuries. Words cannot express how grateful we are, so how could we take money for such a small thing? You’re looking down on us too much if you pay us.”

 

Author White Pear Flower: The little marquis is too pitiful, right?

 

[Gumihou: Hahahaha! Gumihou takes pleasure in the little marquis’ pain. Lolz ~]

 

 

[1] Ghost Peppers

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhut_jolokia

 

[2] Infinity Pepper

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinity_chili

 

[3] … actually, I put in the stupid character movie reference… also the meme detail…. I slowed down the pepper eating moment by at least 2 more paragraphs. I thought that it would give it more drama. I can’t help it, it’s such a glorious moment, but author only gave it a sentence each way.

 

[4] Sichuan Peppers – Also known as Huajiao Peppers, they are not really peppers, and will make your mouth go numb. Often sprinkled on authentic Sichuan style Mabo Tofu. Japanese style Mabo Tofu doesn’t use it.

 

[5] To Grow Fat from Eating One’s Words – To not live up to one’s promises

 

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Translated by Gumihou from kitchennovel dot com.

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