Chapter 96.2: Azure Water ValleyOriginal and most updated translations are on volare. If this is being found anywhere else, it has been stolen. Don't support theft. :)
Near the lake was a small strange building. There were two children, around the age of eight, guarding the large entrance. Their drowsy appearances were very tender and cute.
When one of the two little doormen heard the sound of footsteps, he immediately woke up and gazed at the beautiful seductive yao that had walked out from amid the fog. He dazed out for a good while before he pushed his companion. The two looked curiously at Baili Yu who was wearing a crimson robe. After they confirmed that this was a human and not an evil spirit, they used young and tender voices that carried maturity to say simultaneously, “Two guests, where from have thoust come? What for have thoust come?”
Ye Chuan couldn’t help but want to laugh seeing these two doormen speak with so much decorum.
The two doormen saw that neither of the two was speaking. However, the red-clothed man’s aura didn’t seem to be normal so they didn’t dare to casually offend him. Thus, they reminded, “If two guests have no matters here, please do not stay in the valley. Our Valley Master dislike having strangers wander around the valley.”
In the dense bamboo, the spring wind that carried the morning mist caused bamboo leaves to rustle as it blew past. Baili Yu, in his red garments with his drifting black hair, slowly unfurled a smile as he looked at the two young doormen. “Tell Cang Baicao, Baili Yu has come.”
The doormen scratched their completely bare back heads. They clearly have not heard of Baili Yu’s name before. However, Baili Yu’s tone seemed as if he was familiar with the Valley Master so the two shared a glance before the taller doorman cupped his fist towards Baili Yu and said, “Gongzi, please wait a moment.”
After he finished speaking, he turned around and went in to find Cang Baicao.
While Baili Yu and Ye Chuan was waiting to see Cang Baicao on this side, Tang Doudou was playing happily in the valley. Not only could she see a continuous sea of flowers, just the uncommon ingredients that showed up everywhere were enough for Tang Doudou to be happy for half the day. There was even less need to mention the brook she found which was so clear the bottom could be seen. Although it was still just the beginning of spring so the water was cool to the point it penetrated one’s heart, she still ran in and started playing happily.
Not only were there all sorts of fresh and fat fish in the brook, there were even quite a few shrimps. Stretching her hands out left and right, Tang Doudou scooped up a lot of them. She used a large leaf to wrap them up and placed them to the side, before starting to catch the fish.
After she tired herself out to the point she couldn’t even lift her hands anymore, she walked into the nearby bamboo forest to gather clean firewood.
After bringing the firewood back, she moved some rocks to build a simple stove, then glanced around. All she was missing was a pan.
She sighed. Looks like she could only make grilled fish!
The rations and pastries that she had been eating for half a month in the carriage had practically been about to torment her to death. If she didn’t take advantage of this time while Baili Yu and the others were off dealing with matters to have a proper feast, wouldn’t she be wasting her awesome cooking skill?
After she busied all around, she finally finished preparing the fish she caught and started grilling them. Then she mixed the ingredients she gathered earlier and things like salt that she had brought from the carriage before slowly smearing it onto the fish. As time slowly passed, the fish on the grill slowly started to emit an enticing smell.
It stimulated Tang Doudou’s appetite so much she started rubbing her hands together while swallowing her drool. Her two eyes were fixated on the golden grilled fish in front of her. She didn’t even notice that a white-bearded old man who seemed about fifty had appeared behind her at some unknown point.
The old man made the same motions as her; he was rubbing his hands together and swallowing his saliva.
However, Tang Doudou was a lady. When she did these movements, it was moe and cute.
When the old man did it, for some reason it just felt vulgar.
Not to mention, he even did it while crouching behind Tang Doudou. In addition, his face that was filled with wrinkles exposed an expression as if he was intoxicated. That appearance would have scared quite a lot of wives and daughters from good families badly.
Fanning the grilled fish, Tang Doudou inhaled the fragrance deeply. She then said a bit regretfully, “The fish is good stuff, it’s just missing some seasoning so I can’t draw out all of its flavor. Shame ah, what a shame…”
“Let’s eat first, then regret!” Tang Doudou turned around to grab the small knife she had placed behind her earlier and ended up being so startled by the old man crouching before her that she almost fell into the open fire behind her. Luckily, her inner strength was now profound and she managed to forcefully stabilize herself.
“Little yatou, this fish is grilled pretty well!” Seeing her turn around, the old man’s folds-filled face turned into a brilliant chrysanthemum with a smile. His mung bean eyes below his long eyebrows were as vulgar as it was possible to describe. He wore dusty and filthy clothing and seemed remarkably like a beggar that had crawled out from some refugee hole. There was no point mentioning footsteps as there wasn’t even a single footprint on the soft grass. It couldn’t be that this old beggar dropped from the sky?
Just as she was dazing out, she saw the old beggar reaching out with smiling eyes and unbelievably dirty hands to grab the grilled fish. Tang Doudou immediately took a big stride forward to block the old beggar upon seeing those dark black claws and shouted, “Hey! What are you doing!?”
The old beggar had originally been about to touch that grilled fish when he was blocked by Tang Doudou. He sucked back the drool that had flowed to the corner of his mouth and replied with a laugh, “There’s so many fish and a lady like you won’t be able to finish alone anyways. Just take some pity on this old man and give this old man some of it to eat.”
Tang Doudou saw that he was pretty much the same age as her grandpa. Although he wasn’t as benevolent as her grandpa, she still felt unable to coldly refuse him after seeing his pitiful expression. “Alright, then you sit there and wait for now. Once it’s done, I’ll give you half, alright?”
“Alright, alright, alright! You’re really a kind-hearted, good lady!” Having obtained Tang Doudou’s agreement, the old beggar crossed his legs and sat back down in his original spot. However, his eyes didn’t shift away from those grilling fish.
Tang Doudou wasn’t very concerned about the fact that an additional beggar had appeared. When she saw him sit down obediently to wait, she moved to continue with the last steps for the grilling.
However, right after she turned around, a one-eyed old woman crawled out from somewhere and exposed a wrathful expression as she stared at the grilled fish.
After she appeared, the old beggar started waving his hand at her, trying to get her to leave quickly.
The one-eyed old woman gave a sinister smile. Completely ignoring the signals he sent, she walked towards Tang Doudou who had her back toward the two of them.
Seeing this, the old beggar immediately blocked her way. He used his gaze to warn the one-eyed old woman not to mess around.
The old woman poked the walking stick in her hand. Her single muddy eye glared fixedly at Tang Doudou as she muttered something that couldn’t be made out. Afterwards, she said with a dark smile, “Stinking yatou! So it was you that took this old woman’s fish!”
Credits: Translated by Chiyomira, Edited by ed.L
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