Palace Full of Delicacies

Chapter 31 - Lunch

Chapter 31 - Lunch

“Ah?” Su Yu raised his head from the cat’s fur.

Why is the Guifei looking for him?

“Guifei Nianginang is inviting you to make a visit to her palace.” Thinking Su Yu didn’t understand, Yang Gonggong changed his words.

“This… is it not inappropriate, ba…” Su Yu scratched his head.

The Guifei is a woman, right? It’s not good if people get to know that she secretly meet him alone so mysteriously.

“It doesn’t matter if you don’t want to go, Niangniang.” Yang Gonggong looked at Su Yu, who seemed to be tired.

Wang Gonggong had already told him to be on guard against Lu Guifei’s making things difficult for Xian Fei. On the first day of entering the palace, Su Yu was asked to go by name, it was naturally not with good intentions.

“In that case, then I won’t go.” Su Yu didn’t know about these things, but he hasn’t heard about a rule demanding paying respects to the Guifei.

He guessed that the Guifei was just curious about his rare species and want to see it, but he was not interested in the Guifei at all. Instead, he lay down again, stroking the lying kitten back with his nose.

“Sauce, have you ever seen the Guifei?”

His Majesty the Emperor liked his paws, as if he didn’t understand him at all.

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Yuluan Palace.

After hearing the little eunuch report, Lu Guifei’s willow-leaf eyebrows suddenly rose.

“You say that again!”

“Xian Fei said that he was a man, so it was not convenient to meet with Guifei Niangniang alone, so he hoped that Niangninag would be magnanimous enough to forgive him.” The little eunuch tried to the best of his ability to express Su Yu's meaning.

“This Su Yu is not easy to deal with.” Lu Guifei gritted her teeth.

She was not the Empress yet, naturally, the concubines in the harem had no obligation to pay respects to her daily. But now there was no Empress in the harem, as the only Guifei, she wielded the Phoenix Seal and was in charge of the six palaces, no different from the Empress. Anyone who was knowledgeable would come to her from time to time to pay their respects.

“Reporting to Niangniang, De Fei and Shu Fei have come to pay respects to Niangniang.” A palace maid came in to report.

Lu Guifei waved her hand and allowed the two concubines to come in. Not long after, there were Zhaoyi’s and Cairen’s from every palace arriving to pay respects to her.

The main hall of Yuluan Palace was soon filled with a crowd of orioles and swallows, chattering together pleasantly.

“His Majesty never visits the imperial harem, and now that male Fei was summoned as soon as he entered the palace…” Shu Fei twisted the handkerchief in her hands, very worried.

If the Emperor liked men, wouldn’t they have no chance?

The faces of the other concubines were also full of fear. Before everyone was the same, no one said anything about the others, even the most prestigious Guifei was like that. But now, someone was favored, and the balance of the harem was instantly broken.

“Niangniang, why not summon Xian Fei to come so we can take a good look at him.” De Fei suggested.

“Hmph, do you think Bengong didn’t summon him?” Lu Guifei’s eyes were full of gloom.

“He doesn’t have Bengong in his eyes at all!”

“This concubine has just gone to Ci’an Palace, and heard that Xian Fei had not yet gone to pay respects to the Empress Dowager.” Chen Zhaoyi rolled her eyes and laughed softly.

“Niangniang, why not use this to punish him for the crime of disrespecting the Empress Dowager.”

Changchun’s Hou Xiaojie stood behind Chen Zhaoyi, and hearing this she couldn’t help biting her lip. She was granted the title of Cen Cairen and stayed in the palace directly. In the past two days, she had suffered a lot.

Now only those of the Zhaoyi rank and above can take a seat, she could only stand behind the Zhaoyi of her palace. Originally, it ought to be her who should be crowned Fei, and she should have been the one who was envied by all these beautiful women, how come it become the fish seller!

“What do you know, if someone is favored by the Emperor, they can naturally be exempted from paying respects the next day.” Lu Guifei sneered.

These women thought she was stupid, instigating her to borrow the name of the Empress Dowager.

“This concubine is foolish.” Seeing that Lu Guifei was not happy, Chen Zhaoyi immediately knelt down to apologize.

She really forgot about it, after all, no one had ever enjoyed such treatment before.

Cen Xiaojie saw the way all three trembled at the sight of Lu Guifei’s raised eyebrows, and once again she was envious and jealous. She hesitated again and again, but couldn’t help saying.

“This concubine heard that Xian Fei used to be a fish seller, and doesn’t know to read or write.”

Originally, she also ridiculed Su Yu that he could only be a Shijun, who would have expected that their situation would be completely reversed.

Now she has to put aside her pride to flatter Su Yu, but she absolutely can’t do it, it was more practical to curry favor with Lu Guifei.[TL_Note: Shijun was the lowest title for a male concubine]

“Oh?” Lu Guifei raised her eyes and looked at her, then had an idea.

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In the end, it was the height of summer, you could only bask in the sun for a while in the morning.

When the sun became fierce, Yang Gonggong came to pick up the kitten, saying that the State Teacher needed the help of the divine cat for his practice and that he will bring back the cat after noon.

Su Yu knew clearly in his heart that Sauce was really not just the Emperor’s pet. Maybe in the future, he can rely on it to communicate with the State Teacher about the way to travel back by the way of “Being good to the country’s guardian deity”.

Su Yu had nothing to do, so he dug out the Su’s family recipe book to study new dishes.

There was everything in this Yexiao Palace, and the most valuable part was that there was a well-equipped kitchen. It was said that there was a small kitchen in every palace, making it convenient for the concubines to set up a small stove for themselves.

However, the kitchen of Yexiao Palace has obviously exceeded the scope of a “small kitchen”. It was as spacious as three rooms, and there were also two palace maids assigned to help in the kitchen.

“In the event they are fortunate and His Majesty pays a visit, he likes to eat meals cooked personally by his concubines. The higher the grade of the Palace, the better the kitchen will be.” This is the explanation given by Wang Gonggong.

Although Su Yu didn’t understand the Emperor’s special hobbies, having a good kitchen was naturally a good thing for a cook, so he excitedly took out the sea crabs he bought for Sauce.

The Su family recipe book recorded a snack made of crab meat wrapped in flour, which was quite interesting. Su Yu maliciously pinched the crab stick into the shape of a bone and made rows of meat bones.

In the afternoon, Lu Guifei once again sent someone to pass a message that a flower appreciating banquet was being held in the imperial garden, and all concubines were invited to enjoy the flowers at dusk.

It was not considered a private meeting in such an open place as the imperial garden, and the person stated that all concubines were invited. Su Yu presumed that this should be a company gathering for the new recruits to meet with directors at all levels. It was difficult to push it off, so he accepted.

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After finishing the important affairs in the imperial study, His Majesty prepared to go to Yexiao Palace for lunch.

“Your Majesty, your actions will make things difficult for Xian Fei Niangniang.” Wang Gonggong advised with a troubled expression.

He had just summoned him last night, he went over to have a meal at noon, and in the evening, it’s possible for him still to be summoned. If this reaches the court, he’s afraid that he can’t escape the accusation of being a country ruining beauty.

“Zhen is going to have a meal, what’s so hard about that?” An Hongche frowned.

He expended so much energy to marry Su Yu into the palace, why is he not allowed to eat?

Wang Gonggong thought to himself, ‘If you want to go there to eat, you have to go to court on time.’, he was about to dissuade him when he heard the guard outside report that King Ling and King Su were asking for an audience.

“This one pays respect to His Majesty. May my Emperor live for ten thousand years, ten thousand years, ten thousand of ten thousand years.” The two royal uncles saluted respectfully.

“Stand up.” The Emperor put away the discontent on his face and waved his hand to let them rise.

“What is it?”

King Su stepped forward and said in a loud voice. “Reporting to Your Majesty, this official has checked the arrangement of the Xiaoqi Camp in the past two days. There are indeed some oversights pertaining to the defense of the capital, and we must rectify them as soon as possible.”

Two slender fingers gently tapped on a memorial on the table, An Hongche said in a deep voice:

“Have you found out anything about the thing that happened before?”

King Ling and King Su looked at each other and sighed.

“It has roughly become clear that the ones who followed Su Yu were King Mu’s people, but the source of two that Your Majesty killed have yet to be traced.”

“Keep investigating.” The Emperor’s beautiful eyes were filled with a cold light.

“There’s nothing urgent about the Xiaoqi Camp, Thirteenth Royal Uncle should first straighten out the defense of the inner palace.”

“This official obeys the Emperor’s decree.” King Su bowed to receive the decree.

“Your Majesty, this official has one more thing to report.” After talking about business, King Ling hurriedly said before the Emperor spoke out to drive them away.

“What?” An Hongche frowned slightly. It was time for lunch, if he didn’t go to Yexiao Palace, he will miss lunch.

“Apart from the basket that Xian Fei got, I still have a lot of chili pepper here.” King Ling cheekily took a step forward.

“You see, it’s time for lunch, and I bought a bag today. Chen wonders if I can ask my Xifu[TL_Note: daughter-in-law] to make me spicy boiled fish.” Then he took out an oil paper bag from his sleeve and put it on top of the imperial table.

An Hongche’s face darkened immediately.

“Zhen’s concubine, how could he make food like a cook.” With this, lifting the packet of chili peppers in his hand, he tucked it inside his sleeves, and went away.

In the end, because of the interference of the two royal uncles, His Majesty the Emperor failed to catch lunch in Yexiao Palace. Depressed, he took an afternoon nap in the bedchamber.

Because it was the first gathering, Su Yu thought that he cannot lose face, so he asked Xiao Shun to choose the appropriate clothes for him.

Xiao Shun obediently chose a royal blue long-sleeved Hanfu and picked a crown inlaid with sapphires and silver tassels for him to wear.

Su Yu looked at the pigeon egg-sized sapphire for a long time.

“Where did this thing come from?”

“This is from Niangniang’s dowry.” Xiao Shun replied.

“In the rush of yesterday, it had not yet been sorted out. So, while doing it, this little one just took one. ”

“How much of this stuff is in the dowry?” Su Yu swallowed his saliva.

He knew that many of the royal rewards were very valuable without looking carefully.

“Yang Gonggong is already making an inventory, and will bring a detailed list in the evening.” Xiao Shun answered honestly, then he couldn’t help adding.

“Niangniang, the rewards you received are unique in the Imperial Palace, I’m afraid that the other concubines’ rewards are not comparable.”

Su Yu felt that he was quietly receiving a high salary and went to the imperial garden to visit his struggling to get by colleagues. He was suddenly brimming with expectations for this party.

Dressed neatly with excitement, Su Yu received the unhappy “ His Majesty Divine cat” from Wang Gonggong.

“Sauce, what’s wrong?”

“He didn’t eat well at lunch, he’s in a bad mood.” Wang Gonggong said with an awkward face.

“His Majesty is still busy preceding court, thank you for your trouble Niangniang for taking care of him for a while.”

“No problem.” Of course, Su Yu was very happy. So he stuffed the furball into his lapel, grabbed the crab sticks he made at noon, and jumped into the carriage to go to the imperial garden for the banquet.

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Bengong -> This palace

Xiaojie -> young lady

Xiaoqi -> Valiant Cavalary

Chen -> this official

Hanfu -> Chinese male clothing

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