Adorable Food Goddess - Chapter 130
Chapter 130: Becoming A Monk
Translator: YTJS_ Editor: Perriemix
Everyone’s mood sank after hearing Zheng Fugui’s words. With a wider scope and more participants, the competition would be tougher than ever. Even Master Chef Niu’s expression has become grave. The only one who looked as confident as ever was that Zheng Sanduo, which made Ye Jiayao suspicious.
Was that assh*le really that confident with his skill or was there some conspiracy going on? Did his father somehow manage to reserve him a place in the top 10?
Zheng Fugui announced that the competition would be held around mid-October, which meant that there was still around two months left. He made it clear that every contestant would have to pay 200 coppers for the preliminary round, an additional two taels if they make it to the semi-finals and another five taels for the finals. The contestants would also have to buy and prepare the ingredients themselves.
What the hell? Ye Jiayao frowned. It seemed that even in another era, people of power are still money hungry.
When the meeting was finally over, Mei Xiuguang was the first to walk off, giving Shopkeeper Li a deathly glare. He didn’t care about the culinary competition. His aim for today was to get rid of the ice cream mooncake but things did not go as he planned.
Shopkeeper Li ignored him and instead gestured to Li Yao that they were leaving.
However, Ye Jiayao wanted to do something before they leave.
Lu Xiaotian stood up when he felt someone pat him on the shoulder.
“Brother Lu, greetings from me.”
Lu Xiaotian turned around, his brows furrowed. Wasn’t this the young man who sat at Zheng Sanduo’s seat just now?
“Brother Lu stood up for justice today. Your overwhelming sense of righteousness makes me admire you.” Ye Jiayao cupped her hands in front of her sincerely.
“And you are?” Lu Xiaotian was touched but he still did not know this young fellow.
“I am Li Yao of Heavenly Residence.”
Those who were just about to leave suddenly stopped in their tracks, turning to look at Ye Jiayao.
Lu Xiaotian’s jaw dropped open in shock.
Zheng Sanduo looked so pale and horrified. “You are Li Yao? Head Chef Li?”
It was said that Heavenly Residence’s Head Chef Li was young, but they didn’t know that he would be this young. Hell, the guy doesn’t even look like he’d been with a girl yet!
Shopkeeper Li slowly said, “He is not just Head Chef Li anymore. He’s Mobile Imperial Chef and Heavenly Residence’s Master Chef Li Yao. Now, if you don’t mind, we have places to be.”
Ye Jiayao cupped her hands again and smiled at the crowd before following Shopkeeper Li.
They were dumbstruck, staring after Li Yao and Shopkeeper Li blankly.
“Xiaotian, your father is in the imperial kitchen, is this the truth?” Ju Fu Lin’s Lin Changchun asked.
Lu Xiaotian smiled helplessly. “It is.”
Lin Changchun glanced at the shopkeeper of Xiang Yi Restaurant, Lian Xingwang, who looked like he was about to pass out, and purposefully said, “Shopkeeper Li is indeed lucky! He might have had his chef stolen, but he sure did found someone infinitely better.”
Ye Jiayao boarded the horse carriage and grumbled merrily, “Shopkeeper, that was mean! I think you scared them!”
Shopkeeper Li laughed proudly. “Good. That is what I intend to do. You know, I’ve spoken more today than I have in all of seven years that I’ve been on that committee. It is exhilarating!
“I’ve always disliked that Mei. He thinks that because he’s worked in the imperial kitchen before, he’s above everyone. Ha! My head chef is also now from the imperial kitchen!”
Shopkeeper Li usually liked to keep a low profile, but now that he has sold the restaurant, he has nothing to be afraid of anymore. He can say whatever he wants and the blowback wouldn’t be directed at him.
Ye Jiayao wanted to tell Shopkeeper Li what happened with Consort Mei and their theory of its connection with that Mei Xiuguang. However, Shopkeeper Li was a bit of a coward and Ye Jiayao was afraid to give him a fright. Luckily, she was now the Mobile Imperial Chef. The Meis, or anyone for that matter, would think twice before plotting against her.
After dinner, Ye Jiayao had everyone in the kitchen stay back for a short meeting.
She discussed the new rules of the culinary competition and also her thoughts about them joining in. This was a rare chance that they couldn’t and shouldn’tpass up. Although it would be difficult to enter the top 10, they would at least be able to gain experience and knowledge if they compete.
Deng Haichuan said, “Brother Yao, our skills aren’t suited for the competition yet. Brother Xiang, you should go.”
Everyone nodded in agreement.
Zhong Xiang was slightly interested but he’s still too unsure.
“I’m afraid I won’t be able to make it.”
“Perhaps you can participate in the pastry competition. Your basics are strong and you are creative. I think it is worth a try,” Ye Jiayao encouraged.
Zhong Xiang’s eyes lit up with excitement. Very mindful of Li Yao’s opinion, he asked, “Do you really think I can try?”
Ye Jiayao smiled. “Of course I do! In the Old Ancestress’ birthday banquet, your pastries were highly praised.”
“Brother Xiang, go for it. When the time comes, we will all go and support you and Brother Yao,” Cui Dongpeng said.
“All of you go back and consider it. Registration starts in three days. Don’t be too caught up in winning, just take it as an experience,” Ye Jiayao told them.
“Now, let’s talk about the second matter. You should all know that we recently have accepted many private banquets. We can’t cope with that if it’s just the five of us, so I have decided to split us up into two groups. Me, Deng Haichuan, Wang Mingde in one group, Brother Xiang and Cui Dongpeng will be in another. The rest of you will fill in the remaining slots. I told you before that everyone here has a chance. This is it. If you perform well, you stay. If I see you slacking off, others will take your place.”
Ye Jiayao wanted to take care of her brothers. She would pull up whoever she could but she has to make it clear that inept and weak workers were not welcome.
Her declaration overwhelmed the brothers with emotions.
“Brother Yao, we will not disappoint you.”
Ye Jiayao smiled, pleased with how the meeting went. She still wasn’t sure whether everyone would be up to the task, but that was now out of her control. She had done what she could.
The family banquet of Governor Su was on the fifth day of the eighth month. There was another event on the fourth for the family of a fourth rank official. Ye Jiayao set the menu and put Zhong Xiang mainly in charge. On the day of the banquet, she’d just have to make a few key dishes to guard a pass.
Today, Ye Jiayao has something more important to do.
She has to find out what happened with Zhao Qixuan.
She was the one who came up with the idea so naturally, she wanted to see how it would turn out.
Early in the morning, Su Yi was practicing calligraphy in his study when a servant came in to report that Little Shao from the Yong An Marquis Residence was seeking his audience.
Without even lifting his head, Su Yi replied, “No.”
The servant said, “Little Shao said that if he doesn’t see you, he will kneel in front of the residence until Young Master comes out.”
Su Yi frowned in annoyance. He thought that after giving him a harsh beating, Qixuan would exercise restraint. He didn’t think that he’d really follow that Li Yao’s asinine advice.
He has actually already checked up on that shameless git. He found out that he’s Heavenly Residence’s head chef and it was only because of Little Jing that he and Qixuan became brothers.
This chap has not even been in Jin Ling for long yet he was already well-known. Actually, almost all the nobles and aristocrats know him because of his chilled drinks, ice cream mooncakes, and his work at the Helian’s Old Ancestress’ birthday banquet. The news that shocked him most was his win against a fight with Princess Liu Li. It looked like the young guy was quite capable and courageous.
Su Yi felt like his Achilles’ heel was in the hands of others and he didn’t like it.
He wanted to get someone to chase Little Shao away, but he’s afraid of blowing things up. He could not have Little Shao kneeling outside so he called him in.
“What’s the matter?” Su Yi demanded coldly. He’s determined that no matter what message Qixuan got Little Shao to pass, he would not pay attention to it.
Little Shao wiped his eyes with his sleeve, his tears starting to pour out. He was silently cursing the chili that Heir-Son Lord gave him. It was so hot that he felt like he was going to go blind.
Su Yi waited for a while, but when he did not hear Little Shao talking, he lifted his head to look at him. He was taken aback by the tears streaming on Little Shao’s face. “What are you crying for? Your master isn’t even dead.”
Little Shao sobbed, “S..soon… he is going to die.”
Su Yi’s heart stuttered for a bit before he recovered with a smile. “Your master is using self-harming methods to move me.”
Although he bashed Zhao Qixuan up pretty badly, it was only skin deep. He had good control over the extent and power he used so he wouldn’t really hurt Qixuan. Dying? Who is he trying to bluff?
“Yes, it is true. It is akin to dying. The Heir-Son Lord… he is going to become a monk,” Little Shao whimpered.
Su Yi was stunned. He wasn’t expecting that.
“Madam has already cried several times. No matter how much we persuade him, it is of no use. The Heir-Son Lord is determined to become a monk. He is going to the White Tower Temple today to take the tonsure.”
Little Shao brought out a little bundle wrapped in cloth from his chest and passed it to Su Yi. “Heir-Son Lord wants me to give this to you. He says it is for memory’s sake.”
Su Yi opened up the parcel shakily. Inside, there was a bead and a lock of hair.
It was as if he was struck by lightning.
He also has the same bead. It’s polished from the same piece of jade. They bought this piece of jade together at a temple fair after school. It wasn’t really a good piece of jade but because Qixuan insisted on him buying him a gift, he picked up a random piece of jade from a random stall. He asked Zhao Qixuan to bring it back home and carve a seal out of it for fun. Two days later, Qixuan brought two beads over, saying that he polished the jade into beads for each of them.
He could still remember Qixuan’s wide smile, revealing all his pearly white teeth. He said, “Wear this and never remove it, okay?”
At that time, he didn’t know Qixuan’s feelings so he obliged.
Slowly, he started to get furious. Yes, Su Yi hid from Qixuan, but he’d never thought of removing that bead.
Does this mean that he really has decided to become a monk?