Chapter 44: The Culinary Tycoon

Intoxicating Pleasures

After obtaining unexpected ingredients, Yu Qingze and Brother Le excitedly went to the market, bought some ingredients and seasonings, and then visited the spice market to find cumin. They also bought two pomelos before happily returning home together.

Today was a festival, and the school was closed for the day.

In the morning, Chang Hao and Grandpa Chang first took mooncakes and meat to village chief’s home as holiday gifts. Then, they stayed at home, ready to pluck the feathers off the chicken and wait for Yu Qingze and Chang Le to return so they could start cooking.

The grandfather and grandson were huddled around a wooden basin, plucking feathers off the chicken while chatting.

“Grandpa, do we still need to make Tuan Yuan Bing today?” Chang Hao asked while plucking the feathers off a chicken leg.

“No, there’s no need. Brother Chang brought some over, so as long as we have something to eat, it’s enough,” replied Grandpa Chang.

Chang Hao let out a sigh and said, “Grandpa, why do I feel like Tuan Yuan Bing don’t taste good anymore? I used to look forward to eating them during the Mid-Autumn Festival.”

Grandpa Chang laughed and said, “Is it because you’ve eaten mooncakes, so now you think the Tuan Yuan Bing don’t taste good?”

Chang Hao chuckled and said, “Mooncakes are delicious, aren’t they, Grandpa? You think so too.”

Grandpa Chang nodded and replied, “The taste is indeed good.”

Chang Hao smiled and glanced at his Grandpa several times. Then, he tentatively said, “Grandpa, ever since Big Brother Yu came to our house, we have been eating well and even making money. Grandpa, don’t you think Big Brother Yu is really good?”

Grandpa Chang glanced at him and said, “He’s quite good.”

The young boy didn’t know that his Grandpa already knew about his brother and Yu Qingze’s relationship and even approved of it. He was still worried about his brother’s happiness, so he started gently persuading his grandfather.

He looked at his Grandpa and carefully asked, “Well, Grandpa, what do you think if, I mean if, if Big Brother Yu becomes my brother-in-law? How would you feel about that?”

“What do you mean, how would I feel?” Grandpa Chang asked calmly.

Chang Hao rubbed his nose with the back of his hand and then nervously said, “I mean, Grandpa, think about it. Big Brother Yu is so good. If he and my brother get together and he becomes my brother-in-law, wouldn’t that be great?”

Grandpa Chang nodded and said, “Yes, that would be great.”

“Exactly!” Chang Hao threw down the chicken leg and jumped up, extremely excited. He even kicked over a small stool while dancing around, exclaiming, “I think it’s great too! Very great! Extremely great! Especially great!”

“Hey hey hey, you mischievous monkey, you’re splashing water and feathers everywhere. Stop it, you’re getting them on my face,” Grandpa Chang leaned back to avoid the water droplets and chicken feathers in Chang Hao’s hands, quickly stopping him.

“Oh, oh, I’m sorry, Grandpa. I got too excited!” Chang Hao giggled, straightened the stool, and sat back down to continue plucking the feathers off the chicken leg.

Grandpa Chang glanced at him and said, “Little mischievous monkey, what are you getting so excited about? Let me tell you, even if you’re excited, it won’t change anything. If your brother likes someone, you shouldn’t interfere!”

Translated on ho lo lo novels dot com.

Chang Hao felt that something was off and looked at his Grandpa, asking, “Grandpa, do you know something?”

“Your Grandpa may have old eyes, but they’re not dim! If you can figure it out, do you think I can’t?” Grandpa Chang glared at him with annoyance and said, “Clean up those fine feathers properly. My old eyes can’t see clearly because they’re a bit blurry!”

Chang Hao didn’t get angry at being scolded. He smirked and said, “So, Grandpa, you also know that Big Brother Yu likes my brother? I think my brother definitely likes Big Brother Yu too. He always blushes when he looks at Big Brother Yu. I’ve never seen him blush like that when he sees other men, you know? And he always secretly steals glances at Yu. He thinks nobody knows, but little does he know that I discovered it a long time ago…”

The opportunist took the chance to continue prying.

He had been pondering over this matter in his heart for so long, unable to share it with anyone. He didn’t know if his speculations were right or wrong. Whether this matter was good or bad for his brother, now that he knew his Grandpa also knew, he wanted to analyze it together. Does his brother truly like Brother Yu? Can they become a couple? Can Brother Yu become his brother’s husband? If they can, is it a good thing or a bad thing for his brother?

His Grandpa’s ears were practically hurting from listening.

“Enough, enough, enough!” Grandpa Chang quickly stopped him and said, “Why are you overthinking so much? Stop worrying about unnecessary things.”

Chang Hao couldn’t accept it and retorted, “This is my brother’s lifelong happiness, Grandpa. Of course, we should think more. What if my brother marries and then realizes that his husband isn’t good? What will my brother do then?”

Grandpa Chang was about to burst into laughter from being amused by him. He asked, “Didn’t you just tell me that your Brother Yu is very good?”

Chang Hao nodded and said, “Yes, Brother Yu is very good.”

Grandpa Chang said, “Then why are you overthinking?”

Chang Hao paused for a moment, sighed, and said, “Sigh, Grandpa, I’m just worried about what if. Maybe Brother Yu is just too good. Lately, it feels like I’m in a dream. I’m afraid that one day Brother Yu will suddenly disappear, and then we’ll go back to our old life.”

“Stop talking nonsense. A living person is right in front of you every day. What dreams or not dreams?” Grandpa Chang sighed and then warned him, “Don’t you dare tell your brother about these thoughts, otherwise, I won’t spare you.”

Chang Hao nodded and said, “I know, Grandpa. Don’t worry, I won’t tell my brother about these things.”

“These matters are not for you to think about. Just focus on your studies, and let Grandpa worry about them.”

Chang Hao looked at his Grandpa and finally nodded, saying, “Okay.” But he continued to think about the same things.

Not long after, Yu Qingze and Chang Le came back and told them they had beef and wild boar meat to eat.

“Beef! Wild boar meat! Brother Yu, how did you manage to buy beef and so much of it!” The little boy, who had been worried about his brother’s happiness, instantly transformed into a food lover, casting aside all those concerns.

“Boss Liu gave it to us,” Yu Qingze replied with a smile.

Chang Hao hugged the basket of meat and couldn’t take his eyes off it. He couldn’t help but say, “Boss Liu is really kind. He gave us so much meat!”

Grandpa Chang patted him and said, “That’s also because your Brother Yu helped him earn money! Finish plucking the feathers and put the meat in the kitchen. Come back quickly to pluck the feathers.”

Chang Hao acknowledged with a sound and placed the meat properly before sitting back on the small stool to pluck the chicken feathers. As he plucked, he asked, “Brother Yu, how do we eat the beef?”

“At noon, we’ll make cumin beef, and in the evening, we’ll make radish stew with beef brisket. There’s a piece of beef brisket in it.”

“Wow, that sounds really delicious. What is cumin?”

“It’s a spice, very fragrant. By the way, do you want to go to the city to see the lanterns tonight?”

“Yes, let’s go.”

“Then let’s have lunch and dinner a bit earlier.”

Because it was a festival and Chang Le had never been taught how to cook beef and wild boar meat before, Yu Qingze cooked the lunch that day while teaching Chang Le, who assisted him.

Yu Qingze could now understand Chang Le’s gestures, making communication between them easier. If Chang Le had any doubts, he would directly ask through gestures, and Yu Qingze would answer one by one.

As they worked and talked, their cooperation was seamless, creating a harmonious and warm atmosphere.

Chang Hao leaned at the kitchen door and watched for a while before whispering to his Grandpa, “Grandpa, look how well they cooperate. Don’t they look perfect together?”

Grandpa Chang gave him a glare, ignoring his words, and said, “Clean up this pot and go start the fire. We need to stew chicken soup.”

Chang Le pouted. His Grandpa must have thought the same way but pretended not to!

An hour and a half later, the food was on the table, and they were ready to eat.

Chang Le and his brother followed the tradition and offered incense and burned paper money for their ancestors. Yu Qingze also went and lit a stick of incense as a sign of respect.

Lunch consisted of cumin beef, braised wild boar, sour green beans with chicken giblets, steamed fish, along with vegetables and chicken soup. It was a lavish spread.

Cumin Beef
(credit: The New York Times)
Sour Green Beans with Chicken Giblets
Steamed Fish Fillets

Braised Beef (Couldn’t find a pic for Braised Wild Boar)

Yu Qingze deliberately bought a bottle of osmanthus wine on the street and filled it up for Grandpa Chang, himself, and poured a generous half cup for Chang Le too.

Chang Le saw Yu Qingze pouring him a drink and hurriedly raised his hand to stop him, indicating that he didn’t want it.

Yu Qingze whispered, “It’s fine. This wine has a low alcohol content, not intoxicating. You can have a little bit. If you get drunk, you can take a nap in the afternoon, and it’ll be fine. We’ll go see the lanterns in the evening after dinner.”

Grandpa Chang added, “Having a little bit won’t hurt.”

Chang Le reluctantly agreed.

Chang Hao also wanted to drink, but Yu Qingze refused and gave him a bowl of chicken soup instead.

So, the young boy, who could only drink chicken soup, watched the three adults toasting each other, and he could only finish his bowl of chicken soup!

In this world, it was rare to have beef on a regular basis, and for Chang Le and his family, it was even rarer to be able to buy it. They couldn’t afford it before. So, they naturally started with the cumin beef.

“Wow, this beef is so delicious! It tastes different from other meats!” Chang Hao took a bite, as usual, and gave his evaluation, then called on others to eat. “Grandpa, Big Brother Yu, brother, you should eat too. It’s delicious!”

Grandpa Chang and Chang Le tasted it and nodded, indicating that it was indeed delicious.

Seeing that they all enjoyed the dish, Yu Qingze took a few bites and then focused on eating the fish.

But soon, after he had just toasted with Grandpa Chang, he turned his head and found two pieces of beef in his bowl.

Yu Qingze turned to look at Chang Le.

Chang Brother Lestured, telling him to eat too.

Yu Qingze smiled and said, “Okay.” He thought he had been quite discreet, but he didn’t expect Little Brother Le to notice.

The table was filled with dishes for both eating and drinking. Yu Qingze and Grandpa Chang savored their drinks and enjoyed themselves.

What they didn’t expect was that after Chang Le finished a glass of osmanthus wine, he developed a liking for the taste and even poured himself another glass.

Yu Qingze saw him finish two glasses and lick his lips, showing a satisfied expression. He leaned over and whispered, “Is it good?”

Chang Le nodded, his eyes watery. He gestured, saying it was a little sweet with the fragrance of osmanthus, quite delicious.

Seeing him like this, Yu Qingze had an idea. He reached over and took the wine jug, pouring another glass for Chang Le, saying, “Drink it. It’s rare to have it.”

Chang Le didn’t mind and continued eating and drinking. He clinked glasses with the two men, touching their cups left and right, and ended up drinking quite a bit. Slowly, the alcohol flushed his face, making it turn red, and he started feeling a bit dizzy.

When they finished the meal, Chang Le slumped onto the table. The aftereffects of the alcohol were kicking in.

Yu Qingze lightly chuckled, having noticed it. Brother Le had drunk five small cups in total. At first, he didn’t feel anything, but now he was feeling the effects.

Fortunately, the wine had a relatively low alcohol content; otherwise, Yu Qingze wouldn’t have let him drink so much.

“Brother Le, wake up. Let’s go lie down in bed.”

Grandpa Chang had also drunk quite a bit due to his happiness, but being older, he was feeling a bit dizzy too. He waved his hand and said, “Help him inside. He can’t walk anymore.”

“Alright.” Yu Qingze nodded.

Chang Hao automatically collected the dishes and went to the kitchen to wash them, while Grandpa Chang sat by the back door to sober up.

Yu Qingze lifted one of Chang Le’s arms and draped it over his own neck, supporting his waist as he helped him up.

Chang Le followed him in a dazed state.

Yu Qingze assisted Chang Le into the room and sat him on the edge of the bed, leaning against him. Yu Qingze pulled the bed curtains aside and hung them on the bedpost, then gently lifted Chang Le onto the bed and helped him lie down.

Yu Qingze went out again and poured two glasses of water, giving one to Grandpa Chang and taking the other into Chang Le’s room.

“Brother Le, Brother Le, drink some water first.” Yu Qingze patted Chang Le’s face, waking him up.

Chang Le opened his eyes and looked for a while before recognizing that the person in front of him was Yu Qingze.

Translated on ho lo lo novels dot com.

“Good boy, drink some water and then go back to sleep.” Yu Qingze lifted Chang Le’s head slightly, feeding him a few sips of water before gently laying his head back down, allowing him to rest. He then planned to get up and leave.

Unexpectedly, before he could stand up, his clothes were tugged from the corner.

“What’s wrong? Are you feeling uncomfortable?” Yu Qingze turned back and sat down, asking.

Chang Le shook his head and then stared at him without moving.

Yu Qingze: …

Placing the bowl on the small table beside him, Yu Qingze turned around and reached out, holding the hand that was gripping his clothes, and asked, “Are you feeling dizzy?”

Chang Le nodded and then shook his head. He was feeling extremely dizzy, but he didn’t want to leave Brother Yu’s side.

Yu Qingze pondered for a moment and asked, “Don’t want to sleep?”

Chang Le withdrew his hand and slowly gestured: If I sleep, will you leave?

Seeing this gesture, Yu Qingze’s throat tightened, and he softly asked, “Do you want me to stay with you?”

Chang Le nodded and gestured: Wait until I fall asleep before you go.

Looking at Chang Le’s misty eyes, flushed cheeks, and moistened lips, Yu Qingze’s gaze darkened slightly. He had been trying hard to restrain himself, but who would have thought that Brother Le would say something like this? How could he still hold back in this situation?

Enduring any longer was becoming unbearable, as if enduring a turtle was necessary.

At the very least, he had to kiss him.

He lowered his head, his lips pressing against Chang Le’s rosy ones, unable to resist the urge to part his lips and suck gently, savoring the soft and full sensation that almost drove him crazy. Little Yu Qingze down there immediately awakened.

He almost wanted to devour Chang Le whole!

Realizing his heavy breathing and deep desire, Yu Qingze quickly sat up, pulling himself away, afraid that if he continued, he would lose control!

Chang Le’s head was still spinning, his reaction much slower than usual. He hadn’t even registered the fact that he had just been stolen a kiss. He only felt a slight tingling and swelling on his lips. He opened his eyes wide, reaching out and gesturing: Why did you bite me?

Yu Qingze: …

Yu Qingze couldn’t help but cry and laugh. His fervor was being extinguished by this slow-witted little turtle. He sighed and said, “I didn’t bite you.”

Chang Le touched his own lips, looking at him with a puzzled expression.

He was already a bit dull-witted, and now he seemed even more so. Such an adorable little turtle.

Yu Qingze reached out and pinched his nose, sighed, gave him a kiss on his forehead, and said, “Go to sleep, have a good rest, and you’ll feel better when you wake up.”

He hoped that when he woke up in the afternoon, he would still remember the words they had just spoken.


Thingyan: If I have choose to a novel I want to transmigrate to, it’d be this novel. Although I’m a woman, and there’ll be no place for me :'(


  1. Stela says:

    Thanks for the updates❤️❤️

  2. Aprillen says:

    I guess if we transmigrated into this kind of novel, we’d end up in a ger body… 🤔

    Thank you for the chapter!

  3. Crystal says:

    If I were to transmigrate it would be in the ancient times not as a noble or royalty though (that era has long been forgotten for now), but as an ordinary person, farming, running a business, and enjoying life! Second would probably be interstellar, right not, I’m REALLY Invested in these genres. 🥰

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