MMIH Chapter 40 : Cliffside Meeting (3)

The soup was already boiling, as thick and milky white bubbles rose inside the pot, and its rich aroma had started to fill the little kitchen.

Xin Mei bowed her head and took a knife as she concentrated on carving the tofu. The tofu had been soaked in cold water before, added with today being in the middle of winter, her hands had begun to turn red. Some of her fingers had become unsmooth, so she had to slowly outline her face, while holding her breath, for fear of making any mistakes.

Today was the first day of the first lunar month. She would have a cliff meeting with Lu Qianqiao late that night, so she decided to cook something delicious for him. After much deliberation, she decided to carve tofu Xin Mei, which she found was quite interesting.

She remembered when she went to see him several times before, he was always late. It seemed like he was unwilling to come. However, later on, it was him who came to wait for her early by the edge of the cliff. His words gradually became more and more, unlike their first cliff meeting at the beginning, where she would say ten sentences, and he could not return even two words.

……was this meeting going to be successful?


This is a shāomai with mushrooms and glutinous rice as fillings. Shāomai is a type of dumpling. What makes it different from the usual dumpling is, the top of a shāomai isn't properly sealed, as it left open like in the picture.
Image Credit: 遥远の呼唤 (香菇糯米烧麦) via Meishi China
Xin Mei steamed the carved tofu in a steamer with a burst of joy. There were already two steamers on the stove, which were already steaming. They were filled with all kinds of pastries such as small steamed buns and small shāomai. These pastries would be left for the monsters in the Imperial Mausoleum. Since Lu Qianqiao was not here, Silan had no mood to cook at all. Although it wasn’t compulsory for monsters to eat, and since today was New Year day anyway, it would be hard for them to celebrate if left with the feeling cold and cheerless.

“It smells good! Really smells good!”

Zhao Guanren, who was stuck in the underground palace while writing the final part of 'Unhappy Couple Made In Heaven', would occasionally come out for fresh air. When he sniffed the delicious smells, he had spittle three feet long and immediately ran into the kitchen. His eyes emitted green light as he looked at the white tender pastries.

Xin Mei smilingly filled him with a bowl of fish soup and served him with several steamed buns. “Zhao Guanren, why don’t you try them and see how they taste.”

“Miss has made them herself. How could they not be delicious!”

Then, Zhao Guanren’s face was half-buried in the bowl, while his beard was full of crumbs. Suddenly, he remembered something and looked up at Xin Mei.

“Miss, are you going to Changgeng Mountain Pass tonight to talk to the General?”

“Of course.” This matter wouldn’t stop neither by wind nor rain.

“Can you please take our messages to the General too?” He dug in his crumpled sleeve for a long time before he took out a crumpled envelope and placed it in her hand.

“Everyone wrote their names on it, and we secretly wrote a few words for the General.” Zhao Guanren was picking food fragments that stuck between his teeth. “I told them that I would give it to you a few days ago, but you hadn’t come down to the underground palace so I hadn't been able to meet you. In a word, we all miss him very much. What are these things about war demons, transformation and perfection? We monsters don’t really understand these things. Even after we’ve been together for so long, he can still go away without leaving a word. Does he still treat this place as his home?“ This noob translation was translated by a noob translator きつね. Please read this chapter at xin-shou.blogspot.com.

When Xin Mei opened the envelope, she saw inside, a piece of white paper which had been folded so many times. The names of all the monsters had been written on it. Tao Guoguo and his younger brother couldn’t write, so each of them had attached their yellow feathers, one each inside. His younger brother also left behind his fat palm print on the paper.

“At first, Silan was making some ruckus, wanting to go with you to see the General, but the others managed to stop him.”

Zhao Guanren smiled at her in a lewd way, “How can we let him be an eyesore amidst the flowers under the moonlight in your world of two people? Miss, you should ask the General to come back quickly. I’m almost done with the final part of Unhappy Couple Made in Heaven. We’ll start the performance once he comes back. I’ve changed a lot of the storyline this time, and I’m sure there won’t be another tragedy.“

“It's not going to be another one dies and the other one goes mad, is it?” Xin Mei looked at him suspiciously.

“No, no, no, it’s definitely different this time! It is an outcome that even you will never guess!“ Zhao Guanren touched his beard mysteriously and whispered, “I’m going to make the General’s mother die of severe illness. The mother’s dying wish is to ask the General to marry a war demon noble lady, which made him stuck in a dilemma between loyalty and filial piety. As a result, you will have to withdraw while feeling gloomy. Fifty years later, the General will stand in front of your grave and weep silently. Then he draws his sword and commits suicide to follow you.“

……why couldn’t she see any difference in the ending?

Xin Mei snatched the steamed buns left in the steamer and stuffed them in her mouth. This old person had a crow’s beak. She would not let him eat any more good things.

As Xin Mei saw that chenshi was starting to pass and it was going to be a long way from the Imperial Mausoleum to Changgeng Mountain Pass, she hurriedly packed the food in a box and carefully carried it in her hands before she went out.

Zhao Guanren sent her to the edge of the Miss Formation while smilingly said, “Miss, isn’t this good now? You have changed a lot since you are not acting so childish anymore. You must quickly become a much better woman and get the General back.“

“Of course. Aren't I already a good wife?”

With a smile, she turned around and went out through the Mist Formation.

As long as she went out through the Mist Formation, the Great Monk would unexpectedly be waiting for her by his gorgeous long vehicle. Although she didn’t know why that man had been sticking to her till this day, she had to admit that his long car flew very fast and it would not be blown by the cold wind while in the open air, so it was perfect for him to be her chauffeur without pay.

However, he was not here today.

Xin Mei circled the area, but she still could not find his long vehicle. In the end, she had to take out the talisman where Qiu Yue stayed from her sleeve. Just as she was about to call out Qiu Yue, she heard the melodious singing of birds of paradise over her head. The Great Monk's sleeves fluttered as he landed and smiled apologetically, “Sorry for being late today. Luckily, you haven’t gone yet.”

She took out five boxes of pastries from the huge food box and gave them to him, “Here’s a box for you, happy new year. Please send the remaining four boxes to Xinxie Manor for me.“

The Great Monk’s eyes glistened with laughter, “Thank you very much. It must have been hard for you to think of giving some to me. But if I go to Xinxie Manor to deliver cakes, who will send you to Changgeng Mountain Pass?“

Xin Mei thought for a moment, “Why don’t I ride Qiu Yue first and you will catch up with me after you deliver the pastries?”

……as expected! Indeed as expected, he was treated as a chauffeur cum a servant. The Great Monk touched his aching heart, and he endured it till his face was looking green.

“Fake monk, have you encountered any happy occasion today?”

Xin Mei looked at his face and casually asked.

The Great Monk’s eyes gleamed slightly as he smiled, “Why do you ask?”

“You look very happy today.”

Although he was usually happy and giggling, today he...how should she put it, was quite different than usual. There was an inexplicable pleasure coming from within him, unable to deceive her eyes.

He smiled once more, put the food box in the car and said, “Uh-huh, after waiting for so long, it’s finally not going to end up in vain. But if it doesn’t work, then it’s up to heaven.“

What was the good occasion? She was a little curious.

“Although I am a monk, I’m also a man. Men’s secrets should not be told to womenfolk.“ He then jumped into the long vehicle and whistled, as the birds of paradise flapped their wings and flew up high into the sky.

“Then, you go first. I’ll catch up with you later.”

This man was really mysterious.

Xin Mei rode on the back of Qiu Yue and patted it on the head. “Good Qiu Yue, let’s go to Changgeng Mountain Pass.”

*

On the first day of the first lunar month, the peasant army who had repeatedly committed crimes did not come to attack. Presumably, everyone was busy celebrating the new year. It was rare for Changgeng Mountain Pass to feel warm for once. While, the armour soldiers celebrated the new year by following the customs of their hometowns, either by making jiaozi or eight treasure rice puddings. The aroma of the food masked the lingering smells of smoke and blood.


Lu Qianqiao was sitting in his main tent while looking at the square territorial map. He had a box of eight-treasure rice puddings and a basket of steamed dumplings at hand, all had been sent by the soldiers.

He dug into the red and green eight treasure rice puddings, and put one into his mouth—it was too sweet.

Then, he tried the steamed dumpling—it was too bland.

He seldom felt somewhat flighty and impetuous as he looked up at the sun. It was estimated that it would be one or two shichen before dusk to arrive. At that time, Xin Mei would come. He was hungry, but he didn’t want to eat anything because she had promised that she would cook for him today.

It seemed that...he hadn’t tasted her dishes for a long time already.

He finally grasped the taste of nostalgia and hoped that the sun would soon fall—he missed her and he wanted to see her much earlier. This time, he wanted to try to jump over the cliff, stand beside her and touch her cheek.

The murderous intention in his heart had gradually disappeared, and his chest, which was often faintly painful, had not felt that way for a long time.

If she didn’t come, the whole Changgeng Mountain Pass would seem to be in black and white. The smell of blood no longer excited him. He wanted more...he wanted to smell her once more.

Hugging her felt like it had happened in his last life.

He put down the square map and grabbed the heavenly maiden daren that had been on the table for a long time. He adjusted her sleeves, combed her hair and took out the knife to trim its worn and unsmooth areas.

Suddenly, from outside the camp, there was a cry of panic coming from the soldiers, followed by the lifting of the tent curtain. Li Min, whom he had not seen for a long time, came in with the chill.

“General! He, he just trespassed...“

The soldier who guarded the entrance stammered.

“It’s okay. You may go out.” Lu Qianqiao put down the doll and stood up.

Li Min came before him and noticed his red and black eyes. He looked pleasantly surprised and felt a bit complicated. He immediately put his hands together to salute him, “Young Master! As expected, you have inherited Madam’s noble blood!”

Lu Qianqiao did not look at him, but instead asked him with a heavy expression, “What is it?”

“Madam has long known about the Young Master’s matter. Taking into consideration that the Fox Clan often comes to provoke recently, she hadn’t dared to leave the clan. Today, however, there is finally a gap. She is currently waiting for you at the top of Mount Li, which is ten miles away.“

Lu Qianqiao still didn’t look at him, “I won’t go back to my clan.”

Li Min was not in a hurry either. “Madam told me that, although she very much likes to see Young Master be able to maintain his sanity and since you're not going to kill the person you love, she doesn't mind taking the initiative to solve these troubles for Young Master.”

Lu Qianqao finally looked back, with his two cold eyes on him. Li Min suddenly felt afraid in his heart, and he involuntarily took a step back. He bowed his head, didn’t dare to offend him anymore.

“She...killed my father and now, threatens me with Xin Mei?” Lu Qianqiao reached out and picked up the black whip on the couch. He turned and walked out of the tent. “I can go see her. If you don’t want to die, don’t follow me.”

...this mother and son, was it inevitable that they were going to fight till one died?

Li Min silently watched him go far ahead, paused for a bit, and then followed him out. He did not dare to go in the same direction as him, so he retreated to a mountain situated to the east and waited.




Noob Translator's Musing

Sorry for the delay. It had been a very busy week for me, you know, with work and with it being at the end of the year. (X_X)

Oh, I'm going to change Lord Zhao to Zhao Guanren which is used as the word mister or respectful term to address a man during the Song Dynasty. I need to edit the previous chapters after this.

And another one, I think I have mistakenly translated a word. Remember when the Fake Monk...err...I mean the Great Monk told Xin Mei about LQQ's past? I had translated that LQQ was sent to Hui People when it actually meant his (mother's) clan, the War Demon Clan. I will have to change that one too.


きつね

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16 Jul 24
🦊 : I've updated 2 new chapters for ROHYX on my Ko-fi page: Chapters 527 & 528. Those who have sponsored me some teas, you have 30 days of access to all the chapters available there. 😊