Chapter 29: Encounter

----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----

----- THIS TRANSLATION BELONGS TO konila.com -----

----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----

----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----

Li Qinghe didn't discuss about her betrothal gifts with the Zhou family, but she was fine even if they were less. What she didn't want was to be intentionally given less than the others. Even after her marriage to Zhou Chengkang, they both are talented and can earn money.

"We haven't discussed this." Li Qinghe said lightly.

They soon arrived at the entrance of the house of the Zhou family. One by one, people from different families started to arrive at this hour.

Li Qinghe and Li Qingmiao went to the kitchen to help out.

There were already some ladies cooking in the kitchen. They hadn't seen Li Qinghe earlier when they were back and forth to the town. The first thing they all did when they saw her entering the kitchen was to tease her. They then asked her to help them cut meat.

Taking the knife, Li Qinghe began to cut. She cut the meat into large and thin pieces. She was better at cooking than many other women in the village who have been cooking for a lifetime. Noticing this, someone immediately praised her, "Qinghe has learned well."

"I had to learn well or else they would have sent me home." Li Qinghe answered, "See, as soon as I became injured, I wasn't needed anymore."

"Was it also true that you ate buns while you worked in the restaurant?" Someone asked curiously.

Everyone looked happy as they laughed and chatted in the kitchen.

Li Qinghe laughed as well, "No. Sometimes we have special meals. The chef prepares food for us and we eat it. Nevertheless, there are many helpers and the chef can't cook much. Therefore, we only get a little to eat."

"I understand." A female voice rang out, "You can only eat leftovers."

Everyone heard the sound and saw a girl in simple clothes standing at the door. "You don't need to show off." she said with a cold expression on her face.

Li Qinghe is not showing off in any way. Rather, the people were just asking curiously, enjoying a good laugh, and no one took it seriously. When the girl speaks, her words just choke to death.

There was a woman on the side who recognized her, "Laixi, when did you come?"

It turns out that the girl standing next to the door is Qian Laiman's cousin. The way she spoke in front of so many people made it seem as if she didn't like Li Qinghe much.

Qian Laixi smiled, "When I came here, I heard you say the restaurant helpers have enough buns to eat, but how can that be possible? At best, the chef could get one or two buns. As for little helpers, many would consider themselves lucky if they are not fired."

"What you said is right." Li Qinghe agreed, "But you need to move aside. You are blocking the light."

Suddenly, the atmosphere became strange. Lai Xi was immediately pulled outside by a woman, and the kitchen quickly resumed its lively atmosphere.

After that, everything went smoothly. The wedding banquet began as soon as the bride entered the house. The wedding of the Zhou family went smoothly. After lunch, everyone helped clean up the dishes, tables, and chairs, and the wedding ended.

Li Qinghe went to feed the fish in the afternoon. On her way back home, she bumped into Qian Laixi again.

"Oh, isn't this Qinghe?" Qian Laixi paused and scanned her up and down. "It's true, you're like a fox..."

The moment Li Qinghe saw her, she frowned. She raised her hand and slapped Qian Laixi without any hesitation when she heard her curse her.

Qian Laixi erupted in anger instantly.

Without waiting for her to say anything, Li Qinghe sneered, "Try saying another sentence!"

Qian Laixi covered her face and cried, "You bully..."

Li Qinghe folded her arms and stared at her, "Don't talk if you don't know how to speak. You deserve a beating for not having a clean mouth!"

Qian Laixi broke down in tears, feeling wronged, "What did I say wrong? My brother didn't come back when he went to town for you. He is always busy. As a result, the wedding date is pushed back and forth. Who are you if you're not a fox?"

Li Qinghe asked nonchalantly, "What does it matter to me whether he marries or not?"

Li Qinghe turned around and walked away. While she initially was in a good mood, she now felt a little irritable. While passing the Zhou family house, Zhou Chengkang saw her and greeted her with, "Qinghe."

Li Qinghe paused her steps and stared at him in confusion.

Zhou Chengkang walked up to her and said, "I am going into the mountains."

"The mountains are very dangerous." Li Qinghe disagreed, "Don't go there."

Zhou Chengkang smiled, "Do you want to come? Let's go together?"

'This is good ah', Li Qinghe's eyes brightened instantly.

Zhou Chengkang could not go too deep into the forest with her by his side, so there would be no accidents.

Seeing that she didn't say anything, Zhou Chengkang smiled and said, "I'll come and pick you up tomorrow morning."

Upon returning home, Li Qinghe told Li Fu about the trip to the mountain. Li Fu was slightly upset, but he didn't disagree with her. He simply told her, "Be careful and stay close to Chengkang. Don't run around by yourself. Also do remember to bring dry food with you."

Li Qinghe nodded her head.

Suddenly, Zhao Wanwan came out of the kitchen and asked, "Can you take me with you? I want to go too!"

"No." Li Qinghe refused.

Zhao Wanwan was stunned at the speed at which she declined, "I won't cause you any trouble."

"It's still a no." Li Qinghe said directly, "How does going to the mountain have anything to do with you?"

 Zhao Wanwan's face paled instantly.

One reason is Li Qinghe's sudden coldness towards her, and the other is that her words implied that she didn't know how to conduct herself.

The next morning, Li Qinghe packed some dry food and water for the trip. She had just finished washing up when Zhao Chengkang arrived.

They went to the West Mountain. By the time the sun rose, the two were already halfway up the mountain. There were few people on the mountain roads. It was not uncommon for people to come only to chop wood and gather mushrooms these days.

At this time of the year, wild mushrooms were available, but people who don't recognize mushrooms don't usually come. If they pick up poisonous mushrooms, they may vomit, become ill, or even die immediately.

"Do you want to continue climbing?" Li Qinghe asked while panting, "Or just enter the woods from here?"

Zhou Chengkang stopped and said, "Let's rest for a while."

When Li Qinghe sat down, Zhou Chengkang pulled a hairpin from under his sleeve. One can still smell the scent of wood. "Do you like it?" he asked, handing her the hairpin.

The smoothly polished hairpin was handed to her. His voice and eyes were very gentle as he waited patiently for her response. Li Qinghe's face quickly heated up, and she reached for it, "I like it."

As Zhou Chengkang watched her take it and look at the hairpin carefully, he stared at her smooth hair and fair face. His heart softened, and he gently said, "I will carve your hairpins for a lifetime! If you don't like this one, I will make the next one better, and I promise to make sure you are satisfied."

They did not continue to climb the mountain but entered the woods from the side. Zhang Chengkang was holding a bow and arrow in his hands. After half a day, he caught four rabbits. Two of the big ones were hit in the stomach, while the other two in the legs.

Li Qinghe looked at the small rabbits which had been killed for a few bites of meat and felt a little sad. She suggested, "Why don't we raise it?"

"It's your decision," Zhou Chengkang said with a smile.

Li Qinghe had already gathered mushrooms from the area and had cut firewood along the road as well. People who had time after the autumn harvest went up to the mountains to cut firewood to use as fuel during the winter season.

Typically, people would burn the wheat stalks. Generally, firewood is used for stewing soups or when the cook does not have the time to add fire. Every family will stock up some firewood at home, for occasions such as the Zhou family's wedding banquet where they had to burn a lot of firewood.

The two of them shot a pheasant on their way home. Zhou Chengkang was very happy, "In fact, now is a good time to hunt. I couldn't hit so many before. If I can get better, I can certainly hit more than today."

There is no doubt about this. In today's hunt, the two came across a lot of pheasants and rabbits, but most of them ran away before they could hit them.

Li Qinghe was a little quiet. She recalled Zhou Chengkang from her previous life, who was guarding her tombstone. Initially, he could only burn food and clothing in front of her tombstone with the money he had. Later, his house could be filled with dried meat and there was no shortage of silver and he could even burn some of the town snacks for her.

As he saw that she was silent and seemed to be deep in her thoughts, Zhou Chengkang smiled and asked, "What would you like to eat? Do you want to eat rabbit? Or do you want to eat pheasant?"

Li Qinghe couldn't help it, "You should be kind to yourself first." His clothes were torn in several places as he ran around carelessly in the forest today.

She pointed out her finger and said, "After returning home, you take it off and I will sew it for you."

Zhou Chengkang couldn't control his smile.

They heard someone laughing behind them as they talked. When they heard the noise, they turned around and saw several men carrying logs on their shoulders, descending the mountain quickly.

The person walking in front was someone who had a lot of money, so instead of carrying logs, he was holding a hatchet.

He was pleasantly surprised when he saw Li Qinghe and smiled at her, but when he saw Zhou Chengkang carrying firewood next to her, his smile suddenly faded. "Qinghe, are you going up the mountain?"

Li Qinghe nodded, looking at the wood carried by those people with confusion in her eyes.

"We came to the woods to find yellow wood as someone requested it for furniture making." As Qian Laiman explained to her, he waved a hand to let them transport the wood to the village first.

Seeing Zhou Chengkang, he asked, "Brother Chengkang, are you here to chop wood?" Seeing the rabbit in his hand, he asked, "Ah, is this rabbit for sale?"

"It's not for sale!" Li Qinghe refused.

The moment she saw him, she was furious. The morning before, his sister was causing trouble for her. It was a complete disaster. Moreover, when he asked questions, his tone was not right, as if Zhou Chengkang's rabbit could not be sold and he needed his support.

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----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----

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