Chapter 8: Not Even If I Die
The dinner that the girl made was so hearty that it made them feel at ease. It didn’t escape Xia Chunyu’s notice that the dish tasted authentic as if it really was from his hometown. The three of them easily cleared the five dishes and a jug of first-class wine.
After eating and drinking to his heart’s content, Xia Chunyu decided to go out for a walk. As he passed by the kitchen, he saw Ye Jiayao through the window, struggling to carry a pail of water, even spilling some on her skirt.
Xia Chunyu wanted to go over and help her but Song Qi moved quicker than him, rushing up to take the pail of water from Ye Jiayao’s hands. Ye Jiayao straightened her back to wipe her sweat off when he saw Xia Chunyu outside the window. She rolled her eyes and turned away, expressionless.
Xia Chunyu was unfathomably annoyed as he yelled for Song Qi.
Song Qi rushed over just as Xia Chunyu said, “Today I shall not patrol the mountains, you go around on my behalf.”
Song Qi stared at him blankly before he replied, “I’ll go after I help sister-in-law carry the water.”
Xia Chunyu growled, “NOW.”
Song Qi was startled so bad, he almost pissed in his pants.?What’s wrong with third-in-charge today????Why is he losing his temper out of nowhere? Didn’t he enjoy his dinner?
After dispatching Song Qi, Xia Chunyu also sent Peng Wu away. He then he brought a chair over to the courtyard, and sat smugly, enjoying the breeze as his eyes constantly glanced over to the kitchen.
Let’s see who will help you now. How dare you disregard me??
Ye Jiayao suspected that the third-in-charge was playing tricks on her on purpose. How could she be this unlucky? Only she could end up with a man who had no regard for others.?Song Qi’s praises must be out of fear of this filthy man because from whatever perspective she looked at it from, she can’t see him as a good person.
Ye Jiayao proceeded to carry the water from the well by herself, cursing the backwardness of the facilities in the ancient times.
Xia Chunyu fanned himself leisurely, looking at Ye Jiayao as she carried the pail of water with extreme difficulty.
If you can’t handle it then ask me! I will do it on the account of the dinner you made.??The corner of Xia Chunyu’s lips rose undetectably, waiting until she opened her mouth to beg him.
However, Ye Jiayao didn’t even spare a glance at his direction. She continued huffing and puffing without saying a word.
The second trip, the third trip….
Xia Chunyu started to get fidgety.?Wench! Will begging for my help kill you?
Every time Ye Jiayao looked at that smug face of his, her heart burned with rage.??Classless, filthy man!
“Hey, get me a cup of tea,” Xia Chunyu ordered, clearing his throat.
Ye Jiayao was really tempted to just dunk the pail of water on his head. Couldn’t he see that she was busy? Did he not have hands or legs? He was merely a bandit and yet he was acting like an official by ordering her around like a servant.
Again, Xia Chunyu was ignored. He fanned himself harder, almost making it fall apart. He was just about to rage when Ye Jiayao handed over a cup of tea, stuffing it into his hands before turning away to continue carrying the water.
“Hey, stop there.”
Xia Chunyu wanted to demand what was?with her attitude but instead, he just stood up, stuffed the cup back into her hands and took the pail from her, heading towards the well.
Ye Jiayao was thoroughly surprised. This filthy man had actually found his conscience?
With someone else carrying the water, Ye Jiayao rushed to scrub and wash the bowls and pots. She didn’t want to touch these greasy things after she was clean.
“There’s enough water there. Remember to clean the tub after you use it,” Xia Chunyu ordered coldly, standing by the door.
Just when Ye Jiayao had changed her mind about him, he went ahead and acted like a donkey’s butt again. Ye Jiayao suppressed the urge to roll her eyes and continued to ignore him.
Xia Chunyu walked away gloomily, unsatisfied because he was unable to rile her up.
Ye Jiayao entered the room after a while, ransacking the place until she finally found one of his cotton gowns, taking it with her conveniently.
Xia Chunyu’s mouth dropped open at her audacity.?This woman!??She didn’t even bother to at least ask for his permission before taking his clothes. Did she really think she was the mistress of this place?
Ye Jiayao bolted the front and back door of the kitchen shut before heading to wash in peace. She?spotted a small piece of yellow soap sitting on the chair beside the tub and was surprised to see that there was actually soap here.?The workmanship maybe rough but it was better than not having any at all. She would see what she could do to improve it when she has the chance. This is, after all, the quality of her life now.
Ugh, it must be that filthy man who put it here!??Ye Jiayao smiled slightly, thinking that maybe, just maybe, he wasn’t that hopeless after all.
After making his round, Song Qi returned to see third-in-charge walking around the entrance of the courtyard with his hands behind his back.
“3rd-in-charge, I have finished inspecting, everything is normal.”
Xia Chunyu ordered dismissively, “Make another round.”
Song Qi looked at him, clueless.??Make another round? Surely, he heard him wrong!
“What are you staring at me for? Don’t come back until two hours have passed.” Xia Chunyu waved his hand impatiently.
Could it be that third-in-charge was afraid that it would be inconvenient for sister-in-law since she was bathing?
“Yes, I will make another round again and inspect meticulously.” Song Qi turned back to make his torturous round once again.
“Even though the beautiful bubbles are just a spark of fireworks, even though all your promises are just too vulnerable, love is like bubbles if you can see through it, what is there to be sad for…”
Ye Jiayao sang as she played with the bubbles, the warm water enveloped her body, erasing all the exhaustion and aches. Her mood lifted as she imagined a life beyond this place. She would find a restaurant and work there as a small chef as soon as she has managed to escape. She would slowly save and earn enough capital for her to open her own famous restaurant, spreading and promoting China’s culinary culture.
Still daydreaming, Ye Jia Yao failed to notice the moving object in the dense mist until she reached her hand out to take the soap. She cried out in shock and fear.
The sharp cry pierced the serenity of the courtyard and Xia Chunyu almost fell off his chair. Without thinking, he rushed towards the west wing only to find that door had been bolted. The shrieking continued, so Xia Chunyu took two steps back, and with a mighty kick, shattered the door open.
A black and white cobra, poised and ready to strike, was making its way to the tub. Xia Chunyu immediately moved forward at an impressive speed, grasping the seven-inch snake and flinging it to the wall. The hit caused its joints to shatter and it fell to the floor like a soft straw, unmoving.
Satisfied that the threat was dealt with, Xia Chunyu turned his head to see a pale Ye Jiayao, her eyes absolutely terrified.
“You… you alright?”
Ye Jiayao was unable to speak, still trembling uncontrollably.
Xia Chunyu frowned. He reached into the tub to scoop her out, wrapping her in his gown before carrying her out. He could feel her continuous tremble in his arms and he hastened his pace.
Xia Chunyu placed her down on the bed, saying grumpily, “You are too useless, being this frightened just by a snake.”
Ye Jiayao let out a pitiful wail and started sobbing. After the fright she had, her heart was especially weak and all the emotions she has been suppressing broke free all of a sudden, cascading like the floodwaters from a broken dam.
She was not afraid of anything except snakes! She would rather get torn to pieces by lions or tigers than getting bit by a snake.?Why do such disgusting creatures have to exist on earth??I want to get out of the mountains! I am not going to stay in this godforsaken place any longer!
Ye Jiayao threw herself into his embrace, crying till her tears stained his clothes.
This was the first time Xia Chunyu had been around a crying woman and he was at a loss.?This darn woman! It is just a snake, is there a need for this?Couldn’t she cry more reservedly? His brothers might think he did something to her.
“Alright, alright, stop crying. I killed the snake already.”
“Are you done? If you keep crying I will throw you into a snake pit.”
“Fine, fine, just stop crying.”
Xia Chunyu patted her back clumsily to comfort her.
Ye Jiayao’s crying finally subsided. However, she was still traumatized, her mind making up scenarios if she had not discovered the snake and it had slithered into the tub…
“What if there is a snake again and you are not around?” she asked, wiping her tears on the sleeve of his gown.
Xia Chunyu looked at the tragic sight of his sleeve, dismayed.
“There can’t be that many snakes. It is just a coincidence,” he replied lightly.
“That’s not true! Song Qi said he caught one in the courtyard just a few days ago,” Ye Jiayao said in a muffled voice.
“That is a coincidence too.”
“How is it possible to have so many coincidences?”
“You’re just unlucky,” Xia Chunyu said.
She was indeed unlucky. Otherwise, how else would she have entered this bandit’s lair? Not to mention be taken advantage of and now, almost scared to death by a snake.
“Alright, alright, you clear up quickly and I’ll pick the snake up. Tomorrow you can stew snake soup.” Xia Chunyu managed to pry her hands that are tightly clutching his clothes away. The gown was hanging loosely on her body and the sight of her curves quickly stirred his lust awake. Xia Chunyu’s stood up quickly, his throat tightening.
“Throw the snake away! Throw it away! I don’t want to stew snake soup! Throw it away!” she screeched hysterically.
Xia Chunyu’s ears rang from her yelling.??Wretched woman!??He would have to just?get Old Head Yu to do it because cobra meat is very tasty, it’d be a pity to just throw it away.
Xia Chunyu stared at the shambles in the west wing. The floor was a mess and there were wood shavings, water stains, and clothing everywhere. He could not wait for Song Qi and Peng Wu to come back and clean this up. If these single guys see the scene like this, who knows what they would be thinking.?F*cking bothersome woman.