Don’t Be a Kept Man
Chapter 135: Incoming from the Capital
The crowd of people all automatically swallowed their saliva down, not expecting Xiao Feng Wu to be so ruthless and hit someone who was half a century old.
Taking this all in from a distance, Min Shang Shan signalled for his servants to take Li Si Mou away before walking over to Xiao Feng Wu.
His expression had slightly warmed up from before as he said,
“Min Si Xing is fine now.
The Min family owes you.”
Xiao Feng Wu didn’t take him up on his words and instead looked up at the clouds floating in the sky,
“There is no issue now, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be one later.
Uncle, you should loosen up, or the medicinal traders under you won’t be able to live.
Min Si Xing’s illness… perhaps it is a punishment from the heavens above.”
Min Shang Shan slightly narrowed his eyes,
“When your Xiao family was at its peak, they weren’t any more generous either.
Opium and all, none of which were ever stopped.”
Xiao Feng Wu waved with his hands open,
“So, my family has met their karma.
Those who were to die, died, and those who could run, ran.
Unless Uncle, you wanted to follow behind in our footsteps?”
Min Shang Shan’s throat got caught and air was stuck in his chest, unable to go up or down.
Perhaps it was because he has never seen anyone so easily say that their family crumbled into shambles.
He flipped his sleeves and signalled for his chamberlain to send their guests off.
Xiao Feng Wu pushed his sleeves up to his elbows and smiled until his eyes were curved.
He reached out a hand,
“Consultation fee, exactly 200 taels of silver.
The skills of my Xiao family acupuncture should be worth at least that much.”
Min Shang Shan knew that this was him being unwilling to keep a relationship with the Min family and he sighed deeply.
He signalled for the chamberlain to hand over the money.
Xiao Feng Wu accepted the delicately sewn bag and weighed it roughly in his hands before saying to Qin Ming Yue,
The two of them walked out of the estate, heading back home, and as they did, Xiao Feng Wu suddenly threw the bag towards Qin Ming Yue which greatly confused the latter.
Nonetheless, he accepted the bag of money and lifted his eyes to ask,
Xiao Feng Wu’s feet didn’t stop nor did his head turn back; his only action was to stretch out his waist,
Qin Ming Yue paused and subconsciously clutched the bag closer.
His pale fingers shone with a sharp contrast against the dark blue of the bag.
He took a peek at the amount of money inside and then quickly caught up to Xiao Feng Wu, staring at his back as he said,
“Why give it to me?”
Why did he have to give it to him?
Xiao Feng Wu didn’t know, but since he wanted to, then he did.
He turned his head over to Qin Ming Yue and found that the smile in the other’s eyes could not be hidden at all.
The other’s face was filled with so much joy and happiness, as if he was not holding 200 taels of silver but an entire mountain of gold.
It was only 200 taels of silver.
If Qin Ming Yue was willing to go up on stage to sing, more than enough people would be willing to toss him gold and silver, so why did this make him so happy?
Xiao Feng Wu raised his eyebrow, not understanding one bit.
His thumb circled the top of his sleeves before he jokingly said,
“This man could toss you piles of gold before, and even now he can.”
He thought, this didn’t really mean much considering the thousands or hundreds of thousands of gold he had spent on Qin Ming Yue before.
But Xiao Feng Wu forgot.
He once had a vast family fortune, but the he right now was down to the lining of his pockets.
What he could give and what he did give, the meaning was naturally very different.
Qin Ming Yue didn’t say another word, only tightly gripping onto that bag of money.
However, for whatever reason, he loosened up and then even tossed it back to Xiao Feng Wu,
“Take this money with you.
You’re already so poor, so what’s the point of giving it to me.”
But Xiao Feng Wu only grabbed a hundred taels out,
“Split it half-half.
What’s left can be considered as the payment for my meals.”
With that, Qin Ming Yue could only accept it and he tied a loop around the top of the bag,
I saw you eating those mantous so happily the other day.”
Speaking of which, the two of them arrived at the door to their home and Xiao Feng Wu pushed it open as he said,
“I will eat what there is to eat.
If there’s mantous, then I’ll eat mantous.
If there’s meat, I’ll eat meat.”
Xiao Feng Wu had always been meticulous about his cleanliness, and now after the whole ordeal that happened yesterday, his body was covered in sweat.
So he went to take a bath after boiling some hot water.
In the meantime, Qin Ming Yue was helping Zhong Bo in the back kitchen.
Cooking up a pot of hot congee made from white rice and then taking a while to make dumplings.
Zhong Bo said,
“Xian-sheng, congee is already made of water.
How could we make dumplings too? We should complement the dishes with some salty ones.”
Qin Ming Yue casually replied with his head down, focused on rolling out the dumpling skin,
“He doesn’t like to eat salty dishes with congee.
Make a few more other dishes, and he can pick whatever he wants to eat.”
During all those years when Qin Ming Yue had to survive on his own, he had done pretty much everything under the sun.
Even though this pair of hands were purposefully taken care of later on, if one does look closer, one could see that they were quite tough and callused.
The water in the pot was beginning to boil and after he warmed up the dumplings, he ladled them out and put them in some bowls filled with chicken soup.
Once he was done, he added some chives before carrying it out of the kitchen.
Just finished with his bath, Xiao Feng Wu was walking out with his outer robes hanging very loosely on him.
The two of them bumped into each other and as Qin Ming Yue quickly retracted backwards, boiling hot soup splattered onto his hands.
Seeing this, Xiao Feng Wu paused before surging forward, but Qin Ming Yue had already twisted to the side and entered the room.
He quickly put the bowl of dumplings on the table before taking a look at his burned hand.
Even with the naked eye, his hand could be seen to have reddened all over.
Following him, Xiao Feng Wu grabbed his wrist and rushed over to the well.
He hoisted up and dumped buckets of cold water continuously over the burn before he finally came to a halt.
Qin Ming Yue said,
“Stop, stop, it’ll be fine after a while.
Go eat something first or it’ll be cold soon.”
Xiao Feng Wu didn’t let him brush the injury aside and examined it in detail before saying,
“You have to go to the apothecary.”
Seeing him so serious like this, Qin Ming Yue couldn’t help but feel that Xiao Feng Wu was getting more handsome by the second.
He rested himself on the other’s knees and with his fingers, separated by the cloth, drew light circles on the other’s feet.
He was smiling as he said,
“Aren’t you a physician? Why would I go to an apothecary?”
Xiao Feng Wu said,
“Acupuncture does not heal burns.”
And then he stood up from the side of the well, as if really intending to drag him all the way to an apothecary.
Qin Ming Yue was still worried about his painstakingly made dumplings and would not move,
“Let’s eat first.
It won’t be good if it gets cold, or otherwise I’ll have gotten burnt for nothing.
Besides, it’s not something that will kill me, so let’s go after the meal.”
Xiao Feng Wu didn’t move, only smiling fakely at him, and the two of them froze in place just like this.
The sun was shining in his eyes so much that Qin Ming Yue couldn’t open them and seeing Xiao Feng Wu hold onto him and not letting go, with his body still loosely wearing that long white robe and with his damp hair still casually loose over his shoulders, just like an ethereal being, his heart couldn’t help but be moved.
“Sixteenth Master,” Qin Ming Yue pointed at his palm, “the dumplings will get cold.
I made them especially for you.”
Xiao Feng Wu looked towards the house and then finally walked back into the room.
A white porcelain bowl holding multiple small dumplings with a layer of chicken oil on top to seal in the heat sat on the table.
The soup was still boiling hot and he ate them slowly with a spoon, showing off a charm even in his movements.
Wearing a black coloured robe, Qin Ming Yue’s aura was not like his beautiful and unbelievable appearance, instead it was more cold and confident.
In his hands, he held onto an alcohol cup as he casually rested himself on his side of the table, knocking randomly.
It was only when he saw Xiao Feng Wu finishing his dumplings did he raise his eyes and say,
Cushioning himself on his own elbow, Qin Ming Yue tilted his head to look at Xiao Feng Wu and his long elegant phoenix eyes were slightly squinted.
An expression of glee suddenly came upon him, and he looked so much like a devious fox.
As for what made him like this, he himself couldn’t express it clearly.
Bright and early in the morning, Xiao Feng Wu continued his way to Hui Chun Tang, but before he even got close, he could see a crowd of people outside all yelling about something.
De Gui was blocking the entrance, not letting them enter, and spending a great amount of effort trying to block them.
“Ah, yeah, who comes so early in the morning to see if they are sick.
Physician Xiao has not arrived yet! Don’t be so hasty!”
Since the beginning of time, humans have always loved to be in the heat of things, soaking in all the drama.
Physicians duelling it out in a battle was a normal thing but since Xiao Feng Wu basically stomped on all of the famed physicians known for performing miraculous deeds, forcing more than thirty old men to respectfully call him their ancestor, his victory was all the more too crazy and mind blowing to think about.
Somehow what had happened had leaked out from the Min family, spreading far and wide bright and early in the morning, so much so that everyone came to crowd around Hui Chun Tang.
Unfortunately, there were not many who needed to see an actual physician, and instead, many were here to check out the man of the hour.
Xiao Feng Wu was standing behind the crowd with a strange expression on his face.
In a glance, De Gui found him, and as if his saviour had arrived, he didn’t even care about blocking the door.
He came running as if a tail was wagging behind him,
“Sixteen, you’ve finally arrived.
These people are all here to ask for a consultation.
I said you weren’t here, but they didn’t believe me!”
The moment De Gui spoke, the crowd all looked over.
Facing up against all those stares that had an indecipherable look in them, Xiao Feng Wu walked forward to push the door open and said,
“Oh, here for a consultation.
Pay the consultation fee first and then it’ll happen.”
Most of the people were here to see the main character of the drama, so upon hearing his words, they didn’t dare to shuffle any closer.
They hid their hands in their sleeves and walked away, choosing to look from a distance instead.
But the amount of patients were still quite a bit more than Xiao Feng Wu expected and he asked De Gui,
“Why are there so many patients today?”
De Gui said,
“Ya, I heard that all the head physicians from the apothecaries, like Qian Jin Tang and Xin Lin Ge, have said that they were sick and couldn’t come to work.
They most likely were afraid to bump into you on the streets and be shamed.
They don’t have the courage to actually call you their master in public, so all the patients came here to Hui Chun Tang and probably wanted to see you, the main focus of the drama.
Oh, and I also heard that you slammed Li Si Mou with a brick and caused him to faint, and he still hasn’t woken up yet.”
Hearing the last part, Xiao Feng Wu immediately felt better and he laughed mockingly,
“That was what he deserved.
He should count it as a blessing that I didn’t slam him right into his grave.”
There were far too many patients today.
Usually they were all folks from poor backgrounds, but now there were quite a few more who were quite lined in the pockets – each of them a fat pig to slaughter.
They all came hoping to ask for some prescriptions that could help them live better or longer and Xiao Feng Wu loved these types of patients the most as he could earn a lot without a lot of effort.
Yan Cheng’s most famous restaurant was Tao Tie Lou and their most famous dish, Bai Xian Soup1, was sincerely out of this world.
According to the legends, even if an ethereal being arrived, their tongues would fall off from the taste.
Yet this was not something that you could obtain purely with wealth.
Xiao Feng Wu had been a regular of theirs, and the patient in front of him had a bit of a familiar face.
He looked a bit more closely before he realized that this was the main chef of Tao Tie Lou, Liu Yi Dao. (Tidbit: Yi Dao means one knife)
Seeing him with an expression of pain on his face and his rough hands all scattered with little knicks, which although not serious, still looked quite scary, Xiao Feng Wu couldn’t help but furrow his eyebrows,
“What did you do to have wounds like this?”
The most important thing to a chef was his pair of hands.
Liu Yi Dao shook his head,
“Hoh, don’t even mention it.
The district magistrate is inviting a special guest to Tao Tie Lou and specifically mentioned that he wanted Bai Xian Soup.
This soup requires stone fish for its freshness but it’s currently out of season, so I had to bring some of my disciples to try and catch it in the far mountain area.
It took so long just to get less than 1 kilogram, and still that stone fish is smaller than half the size of my palm.
If it didn’t like to hide within the cracks of stones, I wouldn’t be as injured as I am now.”
Xiao Feng Wu asked while he mashed some medicine just to make some conversation,
“What kind of special guest is it that they require such fanfare? If the district magistrate really wanted this, he should go get it himself.
That’s what’s called gifting from the heart.
Just a casual desire out of his mouth and he really just stomps on everyone below to their death.”
Liu Yi Dao took a look around before leaning forward and whispering,
“What can we do as normal citizens with no power or status.
I heard the other is a high ranking official from the capital, coming here on the Emperor’s orders.
Otherwise, our Zhang-gui wouldn’t force me to go fishing.
The district magistrate is hoping to rise in the ranks, so why wouldn’t he try to bribe and say sweet words as much as he can.”
Xiao Feng Wu frowned,
“On the Emperor’s orders? That doesn’t mean that he can play god.
The district magistrate is making such a fuss but who knows whether whoever’s coming is just some random nobody instead…..
Don’t take off the bandages after the injury gets wrapped.
Come here tomorrow for another application of medicine and after a while the wounds should close up.
Don’t do anything requiring strength when you go back, or when it comes winter, you’ll suffer your fate then.”
*1 Bai Xian Soup: Literally translates to eight fresh, which usually means eight types of some sort of seafood/meat.
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