Chapter 32 - Confrontation
In the imperial garden, the fragrance of flowers was overflowing.
Not many flowers bloom in the height of summer. Even if there were hardworking gardeners in the Imperial Palace who would transplant plants from time to time, there was no such thing as a hundred flowers blooming in spring.
Moreover, in the hot weather, many flowers would wilt after a while in the sun. So, in order to make a flower appreciating banquet, Lu Guifei ordered the gardener to temporarily put out many potted plants, and make them look like a splendid cluster of flowers.
The sweet fragrance of flowers attracted many bees and butterflies. When Su Yu got off the carriage, he saw a group of bees and butterflies dancing around chaotically.
He quickly pressed down the furball in his lapel, lest the cat sees the butterflies and run out to pounce.
His Majesty was very dissatisfied with being pressed down, Su Yu had just moved his hand away and he immediately burst out again.
Lu Guifei was sitting in the pavilion in the center of the garden, dressed in a red and gold magnificent dress, wearing a double Phoenix adorned with pearls gold buyao on her hair, a pair of earrings bearing luminous pearls on her ears and her make-up was exquisite and regal.
De Fei and Shu Fei sat beside her, the Zhaoyi’s sat in the surroundings, and the Cairen’s stood by in attendance nearby. All of them with cold and solemn faces, as if they were facing a formidable enemy, they didn’t look like they were appreciating flowers at all.
“He’s just a fish seller, is it worth being so worried?” Lu Guifei snorted coldly.
“In a moment all of you be clever for Bengong…”
“Xian Fei Niangniang has arrived---” When the eunuch guarding the moon-shaped gate caught sight of Su Yu’s carriage, he immediately shouted and interrupted Lu Guifei’s lecture.
Hearing this, the crowd immediately sat upright and still, looked at the moon gate one by one, took a deep breath, and prepared for the entreaties.
One breath of time passed and no one appeared…
Shouldn’t a fish seller be able to walk fast and vigorously? How come he’s walking so slowly?
“Xian Fei just received divine favor last night, so perhaps he is not feeling well.” Shu Fei dabbed her cheeks with a handkerchief, covering the corners of her mouth that couldn’t help turning down.
Lu Guifei’s fingers holding the cup instantly tightened, and the faces of the other concubines became more and more ugly.
This Xian Fei must have done it on purpose, originally she was prepared to make an initial show of strength, but on the contrary, she let him take the lead.
“Sauce, don’t make trouble!” Outside the gate, Su Yu was negotiating terms with the cat in his arms.
He was worried that there were more butterflies in the garden, so he tried to make the furball sleep in his embrace for a while. However, this guy has just taken a nap and has no intention of sleeping again.
The fur on his head was messed up by Su Yu, His Majesty was very dissatisfied. He grabbed Su Yu’s lapel and climbed up, pawing at Su Yu’s neatly combed hair.
“Oh my!” Xiao Shun cried out in fear and hurried forward to tidy up Su Yu’s hair.
He was here to meet the Guifei, if his attire was in disorder it would make others see him as a joke.
Su Yu helplessly took the cat off his shoulder and smoothed his fur soothingly.
“Okay, okay, forget it if you don’t want to sleep, then don’t run around all over the place for a while, ah.”
An Hongche glared at him, do you treat Zhen as a three-year-old child?
Seeing that the cat Daye was unhappy, Su Yu smiled and kissed his fluffy head.
“You’ve messed up my hair too, let’s call it even. Don’t be mad, I’ll give you something nice later.”
Scoun, scoundrel! His Majesty the Emperor stiffened for a moment, then he pursed his ears and looked around. In broad day, actually ingratiating himself with him in public, how shameless!
Seeing that the furball in his hands was honest, Su Yu hugged the cat with satisfaction, and only then did he lift his feet and went inside.
Detouring past the rockery, the scenery of the garden suddenly appeared in front of him. Colorful dresses, dazzling jewelry, plus shining eye daggers made Su Yu almost lose his footing.
“Xian Fei has truly made a grand show of splendor, making us wait, ah.” Lu Guifei flicked her long fingernails, her words full of resentment.
Su Yu was a Fei, when he arrived the low ranking concubines had to get up and salute him, and at the same time, he also needed to bow to the Guifei. However, the Guifei scolded him to his face, it was naturally wrong not to answer, but if he answered, he could not salute and in the same way, it would also lead to people finding fault with him.
The scene was a little awkward for a moment. The gentle breeze blew and the fragrance of rouge and face powder drifted over, which made the Emperor’s cat nose very uncomfortable, he immediately struggled to jump out of Su Yu’s embrace and rushed to the stone table in the pavilion in two to three jumps.
“AH---” Shu Fei was taken aback and screamed out right away.
The Emperor, who was dipping his paws in tea and washing his nose, was startled by the scream and suddenly knocked over the cup, staining Lu Guifei’s gorgeous dress.
Su Yu rushed over and said: “The kitten is naughty and mischievous, please forgive me Niangniang.”
Lu Guifei’s complexion was ashen, but De Fei beside her actually recognized the cat.
“Isn’t this His Majesty’s cat?”
“Xian Fei, you have guts, how dare you have the impertinence to take the divine cat without permission!” Lu Guifei waved away the palace maid who was scrambling to help her wipe away the water and asked coldly.
The cat was extremely precious, and usually, they only saw it a few times from a distance.
Nobody can touch it except the Empress Dowager and the State Teacher, and last year, there was a palace maid killed by the Empress Dowager for trying to grab this cat by its neck.
“His Majesty is very busy in the afternoon, so Wang Gonggong specially asked me to take care of him for a while.” Su Yu was relieved to see that everyone knew Sauce.
He was afraid that if they didn’t know the severity of the issue of harming the kitten, it would be bad.
“What did you say?” Lu Guifei couldn’t help but stare in disbelief.
The concubines who had been in the palace for several years suddenly felt jealous. The Emperor even handed over his beloved cat to Su Yu, which showed how much he favors Su Yu.
The newly promoted Cairens looked at the cat with mixed feelings, it was this cat who decided that now Su Yu was sitting while they were standing.
The Emperor touched his nose with his wet paws and then rubbed against Su Yu’s clothes, now that’s much better.
He looked around discontentedly. Seeing that several women had been smeared with a thick layer of rouge and face powder and every word could drop two catty’s worth of powder when they spoke, he couldn’t help getting angry. Putting on so much face powder, do you want to commit regicide?
There were four seats around the stone table, the last one was naturally reserved for Su Yu, who was also a Fei. Su Yu sat down with the cat in his arms and pulled his sleeves to wipe the kitten’s paws.
“Xian Fei Niangniang truly is fated with the cat.” Chen Zhayi said with a fake smile, unknown if it was a compliment or sarcasm.
“Cats just like the smell of fish, we can’t compete with that.” Shu Fei covered her mouth with a handkerchief and laughed.
“Isn’t that so? I heard that Xian Fei Niangniang used to be a fish seller…”
Su Yu naturally heard the cynicism, but as a big man, it was not good to take issue with a group of girls, so he pretended not to hear it. An Hongche squinted slightly, truly making a racket!
Discovering that the cat Daye in his embrace was showing signs of getting angry, Su Yu quickly took a crab stick from his sleeve.
“Today we are here to appreciate the flowers, not to talk about this.” Seeing that Su Yu refused to accept the challenge, Lu Guifei secretly gritted her teeth.
“Xian Fei has just entered the palace, and she doesn’t understand many rules. This palace has to give one or two pointers….”
The smell of crab meat dispelled the smell of face powder around his nose. The kitten subconsciously opened its mouth and bit what was delivered to its mouth, the fresh flavor immediately filled his taste buds.
His Majesty’s mood was much better, holding the crab stick in his mouth, he glanced at Su Yu. To fawn on Zhen like this, is it that you want Zhen to help you settle these annoyances?
Before, Su Yu mischievously made the crab stick into a bone shape. Now that the little cat was holding a “meat bone” in its mouth with an “I don’t care” expression, Su Yu couldn’t help puffing out a laugh.
Lu Guifei’s face turned completely black.
A flower appreciating banquet broke up unhappily. During this first confrontation, the concubines one by one thought that Xian Fei was very difficult to deal with, while Su Yu, who was concentrating on coaxing the cat, was inexplicably victorious.
In the evening, Wang Gonggong sent someone to inform him that the Emperor would come to Yexiao Palace for dinner tonight. He also specially sent a packet of chili peppers and asked Su Yu to cook spicy boiled fish.
The corner of Su Yu’s mouth twitched while he held the chili pepper.
How come I’ve never heard that the Emperor even ordered dishes when visiting the harem? He always thought that the so-called “The Emperor likes to eat dishes personally made by his concubines” said by Wang Gonggong was just something high-end and stylish like “White Fungus Lotus Seed Soup”...
Every month, the concubines have a quota for what they eat, anything outside the scope of the regulations would be deducted from the monthly silver.
Su Yu asked Wang Gonggong, he had as much as eighty taels of silver every month. It should be fine to eat two grass carps, but it was still a bit painful to pay out of his own pocket to invite the boss to dinner.
When the Emperor walked into Yexiao Palace, he heard that Su Yu was still busy in the kitchen, so he raised his hand to stop the report and went straight to the kitchen to find him.
In the brightly lit kitchen, the stove fire was crackling. The Emperor stood in front of the door with his hand behind his back, watching Su Yu fluttering around in the smoky kitchen, and suddenly, that warm feeling surged up again.
Last time, it was in this kind of scene that the sound of “Let’s go home, ba.” gave him the idea of tying this stupid thing to his side forever, to keep him captive and only allow him to cook for himself.
“Paying respects to the Emperor!” The palace maid in charge of the kitchen suddenly discovered the Emperor standing in front of the door, and hurriedly knelt down to salute.
Su Yu was sweating profusely holding up the oil pan, preparing to pour hot oil on the fish. He was so frightened by this sudden shock that his hands slipped, and the heavy iron pan tiled over, half of the pot of hot oil was about to spill on himself.
“Get out of the way!” A voice as pleasant as a cold spring suddenly sounded in his ear, Su Yu’s eyes blurred and the hot iron pot flew out. He had already been grabbed by his collar and flashed to the side.
Su Yu didn’t know how the iron pot flew out, all he knows was that the Emperor was still holding him by his collar, carrying him like a chicken.
“Truly extremely stupid!” His Majesty was very angry. If he hadn’t been there, this stupid slave would have turned into boiled fish just now!
Su Yu blinked innocently. If it wasn’t for you, the Emperor, arriving silently to frighten people, he wouldn’t have stumbled, but he didn’t have the guts to say that.
“Hmph!” Seeing Su Yu’s silence, An Hongche let go of him with a cold snort.
“Finish cooking the dishes. Don’t think Zhen will take pity on you if you look at Zhen like this.”
Ah? Su Yu was stunned and stole a glance at the Emperor’s expression.
“What are you doing standing still!” An Hongche was a little uncomfortable when Su Yu looked at him, his thin lips pursed into a line and he seemed to be even more angry.
“If Zhen’s not here to watch you, when would this meal be ready to eat? Make it quickly!”
The author has something to say:
<The Imperial Palace is full of danger>
Concubine A: Your Majesty, this concubine made lotus seed soup with white fungus
Cat Gong: So sweet, are you trying to poison Zhen?
Concubine B: Your Majesty, this is the perfume presented by the Western Regions
Cat Gong: A-choo, A-choo…
Concubine C: Your Majesty, this is this concubine's small pet (Small Pet: Woof woof woof)
Cat Gong: ⊙﹏⊙ Go away!!!
Little Fish: The harem is dangerous, so concubines need to be careful
buyao -> dangling ornament worn by women
luminous pearls -> a legendary pearl that can glow in the dark
Orluros's Vault of Secrets: Hello everyone, I have a goal in progress! We are half way there! When complete I'll post two extra chapters the next Wednesday! If you liked the chapter please donate :)