Chapter 187 – The stormy night exposed a clue
Dinner was still prepared by Huang Yi.
Inside the back kitchen, Huang Yi’s hand gripped the cleaver, very carefully slicing the vegetables.
At this moment, the cook with knife scars carried some Chinese cabbage and entered the kitchen.
“Miss, these Chinese cabbages are very fresh. Do you need to add another dish for your master using this?”
Huang Yi turned her head and saw that the cabbages indeed were very fresh, there were water droplets on the leaves and its roots even had some soil. Looks like these cabbages had just been picked from the field.
The cook with knife scars saw her gaze land on these cabbages, and immediately moved the basket towards her a bit. “Miss Huang Yi, don’t need to be polite. It should have been me making dishes for you guys to eat, how could I have known your skills are even better than mine? Moreover, you guys gave us more than enough money, these cabbages aren’t worth much money.”
Although Huang Yi’s heart was a bit moved, the little consort’s orders were still in her ears, therefore she shook her head and tactfully declined. “No need, thank you big brother.”
Done with her speech, Huang Yi continued to cut up the vegetables with her head lowered. Fortunately, before leaving the manor, the little consort asked her to prepare some ingredients that was convenient and not easily spoiled. Otherwise, in this kind of circumstances, where would she go to find these things to cook meals with?
The cook with knife scars saw that they simply didn’t appreciate the kindness and his heart couldn’t help but be somewhat anxious.
Originally, he wanted to make use of this matter to form a bit of friendship, so he could spread the cover for the matter following this. But to no avail, these people were all completely on guard.
Done making dinner, Huang Yi ordered the servants to bring it out.
Chu Qing-Yan and others were already seatted around the table. They waited until the food was brought up and arranged properly before everyone’s chopsticks started to move.
“Stinky boy, don’t forget you still owe me five plates of pastries!” the Retired Emperor bit a steamed bun as he reminded her by stressing each word as if afraid she won’t acknowledge the debt.
The hand Chu Qing-Yan was using to pick up food paused, she took a glance at the Retired Emperor who was looking at her covetously and somewhat helplessly said “Grandpa, having interacted for so long, how could you still not be at ease about my moral character?”
The Retired Emperor had an appearance of “I don’t care, in any case you can’t renege.”
She felt like she was also drunk.
Eating at the table, dinner passed with the two people’s jesting. Xiao Xu had always ignored these two people’s squabbles.
After finishing dinner, Huang Yi brought the servants to tidy up. Chu Qing-Yan walked about in the lobby to aid in digestion.
“Ah——” A bowl landed on the ground and broke.
Chu Qing-Yan looked toward the sound and saw Huang Yi and a lower servant crouched down to clean up those broken pieces. She walked over and heard the servant say to Huang Yi “Older sister Huang Yi, what is wrong with you today? How come you have been so absent minded all along?”
“Nothing is wrong with me.” Huang Yi lifted her head, and saw the little consort standing on the side. She immediately got up to make her salutation.
“Huang Yi, you walk with me for a bit.” Chu Qing-Yan let the kitchen servant tidy up the debris on the ground while she turned to say this to Huang Yi.
Consequently the two walked to a hidden corner, Chu Qing-Yan turned around to look at her. “Today how come you are so absent minded?”
During tonight’s dinner, she had already seen through this. Originally, she thought as a female, being a little moody was normal. But now it seemed somewhat fishy.
Huang Yi, seeing the little consort ask, also stopped pondering this incessantly in her heart. She told all her suspicions to Chu Qing-Yan.
“When this servant has been cooking in the back kitchen for the past two days, felt that the back kitchen’s odor was somewhat strange. In the beginning I didn’t take it seriously, but today felt the odor was much more stronger. It seemed fishy. I searched for half of the day and still don’t know where that odor is coming from. As a result this servant’s heart doesn’t feel steady.”
“Strange odor?” Chu Qing-Yan’s brows creased with some misgivings. “Bring me to have a look.”
Huang Yi nodded.
Chu Qing-Yang brought Xi Ning and walked into the back kitchen with Huang Yi.
Before they entered the back kitchen, a somewhat acrid smell assaulted their senses. Chu Qing-Yan frowned and used a brocaded handkerchief to cover her nose and mouth. She lifted her foot and crossed the threshold.
The back kitchen was dusky, with outdated wooden boards, everywhere were signs of rot.
If the cutting tools were not arranged inside, with pots, bowls, ladle and basin, it would have been very hard to imagine this area of squalor was a kitchen.
Chu Qing-Yan approached the table with cutting tools. Some of the cutting tools already had rust yet was still placed there. While the other cutting tool’s surface was oily and greasy. Under the light it reflected the grease on it. On the cutting board were traces of disordered knife scars. On it was stuck some unknown things, houseflies flew around in disorder, making people feel sick.
Huang Yi saw that the little consort’s brows were knotted tightly, so she immediately explained. “Master, Huang Yi didn’t use these things to cook, the things used were entirely brought from our manor.”
Chu Qing-Yan nodded, she was always assured with the things Huang Yi did.
Chu Qing-Yan’s gaze landeded on those large knifes on the wall board. She doubtfully asked. “What kind of food needs such large knives?”
Huang Yi seized up the cutting tool on it, then shook her head. “This servant also doesn’t understand. This servant has cooked for so many years, but hasn’t seen any dish that needs this kind of cutting tool.”
Chu Qing-Yan’s gaze shifted down and saw near the cutting board blackish purple marks. She pointed at it and asked. “Do you know what this is?”
Huang Yi leaned close and looked. “Maybe it’s the bloodstain that remained after killing chicken and cleaning fish!”
Chu Qing-Yan took a glance at that large knife then took another glance at that bloodstain. Her heart was somewhat uneasy. But where this uneasiness came from, she couldn’t say.
And just at this time, the little door to the back kitchen was pushed open. The cook with the knife scars walked in, wiping his hands on the apron he wore. He never expected Chu Qing-Yan’s group would be here. His expression was first panicked, then he calmed down. He greeted them with smiles, saying. “Little young master brother, you didn’t play in the lobby and ran over to this filthy place, aren’t you afraid of dirtying your shoes?”
“I’m not that noble.” Chu Qing-Yan replied faintly. When her gaze landed on his muddy bloodstained apron, she couldn’t help but ask. “Master knife scar, you are?”
The cook with knife scars rubbed his hands and smilingly said. “Just went to the small storeroom and killed a sheep. Didn’t have time to wash before you saw me.”
Chu Qing-Yan’s black eyes turned, she immediately lifted her foot to walk in the direction from where he entered. “This young master has never seen the scene of killing chicken and slaughtering sheep. Walk, I’ll go experience it for myself.”
Chu Qing-Yan had just finished speaking when the cook with knife scars saw the situation was not good. He immediately retreated a step to block that small door. As he was tall and strong, the little door was blocked by him.
Chu Qing-Yan pretended to be impatient, saying. “Master knife scar, what are you doing?”
“Over there is too chaotic, I haven’t tidied it up. If you see it, you won’t be able to sleep or eat for three days and three nights. So it’s best you don’t go!” Although the cook with knife scars’s words seemed to be advising, however his tone was unyielding.
Chu Qing-Yan retracted her foot and smilingly said. “It is still Master knife scar that has thought of everything more thoroughly. Then this young master won’t disturb you. You go and be busy with your stuff. Huang Yi, Xi Ning, let us go.”
Nodding toward the cook with knife scars, Chu Qing-Yan brought the two servants and retreated.
Once she left the back kitchen, Chu Qing-Yan walked toward the stairs with quick steps. She must tell Big Block of Ice of her discovery just now.
The cook with knife scars looked at Chu Qing-Yan’s figure as she exited. He swept a glance at the back kitchen, his gaze had an ominous light. Looks like they must get rid of these people tonight! In order to avoid the long night with many nightmares!
As a result, he turned and exited the back kitchen again. He needed to consult with them to make the move earlier.