Chapter 9 — Cooking Personally
Edited by Planetes
Yun Jinshu was actually very curious about why Han Jiang, after saying that he would not return home that night, would suddenly appear at Starbright Entertainment, and was even very interested in having lunch with him.
However, as a very “professional” cannon fodder, Yun Jinshu did not mention the phone call in the morning at all. He even maliciously wondered if Han Jiang had some sort of erectile dysfunction. If not, why would he retreat after only spending a morning with his official partner?
Han Jiang did not talk about it, and so Yun Jinshu was indifferent, neither asking nor thinking about it.
In the car, the two of them discussed what they should have for lunch. From sophisticated French dining, then pretentious Japanese food, to stimulating Sichuan dishes, and fresh Cantonese cuisine… The discussion was extraordinarily passionate and ferocious, but the final conclusion was to go shopping at the supermarket and going back home with bags of ingredients to cook themselves…
Carrying a few plastic bags, Han Jiang looked depressed. “The lotus crab at that private restaurant at the end of the street is pretty good. Are you sure you don’t want to try it?”
Although Yun Jinshu was also carrying quite a lot of items, his mood was very joyful. “It’s already past one in the afternoon. There’s no longer any tables left at the restaurant. Why do you want to go there and join the bustle?”
No matter how good Han Jiang’s temperament was, his face still darkened. He did not know if Yun Jinshu was deliberately going against him, or if he really did not know that there was something called VIP reservation in this world.
“This private restaurant is only available to members. There won’t be many people there. Anyway, even if we aren’t eating outside, we can just give Zhang-ma a call to prepare lunch instead. Why are you making yourself busy?”
Yun Jinshu turned his head, looking at Han Jiang, ruminating. “Then just take it that I haven’t cooked in a long while, and my hands are itching to do so. Anyway, for someone like me who is so dedicated, shouldn’t I display my talents in front of my master?”
Once again, he made Han Jiang laughed. A previously very popular saying surfaced in Yun Jinshu’s head, he was using his life to show his love and dedication to his “work”.
“Fine, fine. I’ll wait and see, alright? But… if what you made doesn’t taste as good as the lotus crab, I’m going to punish you.”
“I thank you for your kindness,” Yun Jinshu laughed as he hoisted the bags over his shoulder. After pondering for some time, he acted in pretend seriousness, stroking his chin, “Ah, I said the wrong lines. I should have cried and begged for mercy instead.”
Just as he finished speaking, Han Jiang reached out to pull him into his arms, his fingers naughtily caressing him around his waist. Cooperatively, Han Jiang smiled wickedly, “Hah, if my beloved wants his life, service me tonight and I’ll consider not punishing you.”
Yun Jinshu burst out laughing, pushing away from Han Jiang with an arm against his chest. Carrying the bags, he ran a few steps ahead before turning his head around and evading the key point in Han Jiang’s words. “Your Majesty, I’m about to die from hunger we don’t eat soon. We’ll hand the important duty of the night’s matter over to the ‘Empress’ instead.”
Beneath these words was another meaning. On the surface, he was joking about with Han Jiang, but in truth, Yun Jinshu was hinting about Han Jiang’s unrevealed lover.
However, this Han Jiang did not have any memories of their five years together, and so he did not notice the overtones. The corners of his lips curved up. Smiling, Han Jiang took this as Yun Jinshu’s way of playing the cat and mouse game, and chased after him.
In the kitchen of Jade Villa, the mushroom soup on the stove was bubbling away, steaming.
Rolling up his sleeves, Yun Jinshu skilfully julienned the ingredients. His fair, slender fingers lined up with the vegetables, looking just like a mix of white and green jade pieces, very pleasing to the eyes.
Han Jiang, originally waiting in the living room, was somehow enticed into the kitchen by the tempting aromas. Seeing Yun Jinshu’s upright figure, as well as his slender waist that was further emphasised by the apron strings, Han Jiang’s throat was a little dry. He could not stop himself from sliding his arms around Yun Jinshu’s waist from the back.
“Hey, don’t do this. I’m cutting vegetables here, be careful.”
Despite having long sensed Han Jiang’s heated gaze, Yun Jinshu was still surprised by this sudden gaze, and the knife in his hand nearly slipped to the ground.
Han Jiang hooked his chin over Yun Jinshu’s shoulder, asking him a little petulantly. “What are you making? It smells good.”
“You’ll know in a bit, don’t be a nuisance here.” Yun Jinshu patted Han Jiang’s arm with some amusement, his black eyes looking very gentle.
From the side, Han Jiang stared at his pale-coloured lips. Feeling a desire within him, he lowered his head and kissed Yun Jinshu’s earlobe. Sneaking a piece of ham from the chopping board into his mouth, Han Jiang exclaimed, “How delicious.”
Yun Jinshu was not sure if Han Jiang was complimenting him, or the ham.
Yun Jinshu could not help but raise his shoulders up, hiding his neck. His ears reddened a litte. His earlobes had always been very sensitive, and when making love with Han Jiang in the past, Han Jiang liked sucking on them, never letting go. Now that he was experiencing this once again, his entire body felt numb.
Smacking away a certain someone’s hand from stealing more food, Yun Jinshu pushed and coaxed that person out of the kitchen.
Han Jiang laughed as he sat down by the dining table. Glancing over at the kitchen, his smile deepened, and suddenly, he felt that coming home to eat was not such a bad idea after all.
It was not too long before Yun Jinshu carried out a bowl of noodles in clear soup. The thin, white noodles coiled up at the bottom of the bowl, and floating on the clear soup were some tender, chopped scallions. It was very fragrant, but a little… too simple.
Han Jiang stared at the insipid looking bowl of noodles, unable to laugh or cry. He was now a little regretful that he did not insist on having the lotus crab. “We’re only eating this for lunch?”
Yun Jinshu picked up a paper towel to wipe away the water droplets on his hands, then handed a pair of chopsticks to Han Jiang with a smile. “Mn. Don’t be so quick to regret it yet, try it before you decide.”
Half in doubt, Han Jiang picked up a few strands of noodles only to discover that the clear soup was actually more than it seemed.
Turning over the noodles, a layer of matsutake and enoki mushrooms were revealed. And under the mushrooms were shreds of chicken and ham. Mixing the bowl with chopsticks, the aroma combined with the fragrant scallions on the soup, and immediately made people salivate with hunger.
Han Jiang picked up a piece of matsutake, placing it in his mouth. The crab roe, which had been stewed till thick and creamy, immediately gushed out, and all the flavours of the ingredients melded perfectly in that bowl of noodles, extremely delectable.
Yun Jinshu only needed to see Han Jiang’s expression to know that his gamble had paid off. In actual fact, his culinary skills were the worst, and this bowl of noodles was the only thing he knew.
When the two of them were vacationing in Foshan, they had this signature dish at a local restaurant. As the process of preparing this dish was extremely troublesome, and just to prepare the mushroom soup alone needed two hours, only five bowls were sold every day.
The two of them had managed to get their hands on a bowl each, and after eating it just that once, Han Jiang could not forget about it. At that time, Yun Jinshu had secretly noted it down. Later on, he spent a lot of effort, seeking help from someone he knew working in Foshan, before he managed to get the recipe for this bowl of noodles. He practiced over and over again, failing over and over again, and he himself could not remember how many tries it took him before he dared to serve Han Jiang this bowl of noodles.
A few years had already passed since then, yet he could still remember that Han Jiang’s expression after eating that bowl of noodles was exactly the same as how it was currently.
Shaking his head slightly to get rid of those memories, Yun Jinshu pulled out a chair, sitting by the side. He deliberately put on a show, “If you really don’t like it, let’s just eat outside. You keep mentioning that lotus crab, and now I want some.”
Han Jiang picked up a few more strands of noodles, feeling that it was really too delicious. He could not help but smile, “Of delicacies and treasures, just this bowl is enough.”
Yun Jinshu laughed lightly, “Then, will you still punish me?”
Han Jiang’s gaze darkened, and his lips curled up. “Didn’t I say it already? The punishment can be waived, but you won’t be able to escape the night.”
“…” Yun Jinshu shrugged. He shoved some noodles in his mouth, not responding to Han Jiang’s words.
Han Jiang had teased him quite a few times, only to feel as though he was punching cotton. He never got a response, but his interest was only roused further.
In his eyes, Yun Jinshu was sometimes like a slippery snake. You could see him, touch him, but never catch him. However, even if he was a slick and sly snake, he still had his weakness. In the game of conquering and submission, Han Jiang was proud of the fact that he had never lost before.
After the meal, the two people nestled in the couch, watching television. Han Jiang was watching the news channel, and Yun Jinshu did not have much interest in it. However, in front of his employer, he clearly could not make his opinion known, and so hugged a plump cushion on the couch and fell asleep soon after.
Han Jiang felt a weight on his shoulder, turning his head only to see that Yun Jinshu was already asleep. His head was leaning on his shoulder, and a piece of his hair was fluffed upwards, looking somewhat comical.
Han Jiang could not help but lower his head and kissing the whorl of his hair, then he gently removed the cushion Yun Jinshu was tightly hugging.
“Hmm… Han Jiang, stop it…” Yun Jinshu hummed, frowning a little. He shifted about, finding a comfortable spot on Han Jiang’s thigh and continued sleeping.
His action was very natural, as though he had done it countless times before. Inexplicably, it warmed Han Jiang’s heart, and he felt that this person seemed to originally belong here, fitting with every item in the house, and giving him a feeling of home.
Thinking about this, Han Jiang shook his head, not knowing what sort of daydream was he having.
At this time, the butler came over with a thin blanket. About to cover Yun Jinshu with it, he was waved off by Han Jiang. “There’s no need, even with a blanket, he’ll still be chilled sleeping here. I’ll bring him to the bedroom.”
Han Jiang switched the television off, lifting Yun Jinshu up in his arms and going up the stairs.
Silently, the butler stood by the side, staring at Han Jiang’s back as though in deep contemplation.
The sky outside was dark when Yun Jinshu woke up. The blanket over him was soft and comfortable, with a faint scent of pinewood. It took him a lot of effort before he realised he was in Han Jiang’s room. Remembering that he had fallen asleep while watching television on the couch in the living room, and that he was now in the bedroom, it was very evident who had carried him in.
He felt complicated for a moment, but soon regained his usual calm.
Han Jiang was this sort of considerate and meticulous person. He was nice to everyone, righteous and just. Yun Jinshu had spent five years, and still did not manage to move this man’s heart. Now, he did not believe that with just that bowl of noodles, he would be able to make the man fall for him.
Yun Jinshu, Yun Jinshu, you’re definitely not awake yet. To be affected like this, hah!
Getting off the bed, Yun Jinshu slid his feet into the bedroom slippers and made his way familiarly to the television console. He tapped a few buttons, and from the console appeared a small refrigerator. Pulling out a bottle of mineral water, he twisted the cap open and gulped down a few mouthfuls. Just as he was about to head to the bathroom to wash his face, he suddenly heard a buzz.
He reckoned that it was probably Zhao Hanchuan who wanted to update him about tomorrow’s schedule, so he hurriedly picked up the jacket placed neatly by the side. In the end, it was not his phone that was ringing, yet the vibration could still be heard from within the room.
Perplexed, Yun Jinshu searched around to room, and finally found the continuously vibrating phone in the black suit jacket Han Jiang had casually tossed on a chair. His eyes immediately narrowed.
The screen lit up brightly in the dark room, and if he wanted to answer the call, he needed to enter the password. The number was also unlisted. Yun Jinshu’s heart pounded, and he carefully glanced at the tightly shut bedroom door before quickly entering a string of characters.
Han Jiang’s birthday, the prompt: The password is wrong, please enter again.
The abbreviation of Jade Villa, the prompt: The password is wrong, please enter again.
Damn, what the hell is the password?
Yun Jinshu was quite anxious. His brain that had just woke up now started to churn. If he was able to guess Han Jiang’s mobile password correctly, he would be able to find out who was the caller in the morning. But what can the password be?!
Right at this moment, he heard footsteps coming from outside the door. Panicking, he quickly tapped a few letters in.
The screen changed, and the phone was actually unlocked?
Cold sweat dripped down Yun Jinshu’s back, and the incessant vibration too finally stopped.
Just now, he seemed to have entered “HJWZY” these letters, but what did HJWZY mean?
Just as he wanted to tap into the call records and look through it, the phone vibrated again, and a text message appeared.
[Mr. Han, I do truly love you, can we don’t break up? I’ll be waiting for you at Xisi Cafe. Whether you’re willing to meet me or not, I’ll wait for you till I see you.]