ACA Chapter 24

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Chapter 24 – A Present

 

Gu Qingyu immediately went over to have a look, “What is that?”

It was a watersack.

“Eighty coins.1” The one selling watersacks was a middle-aged woman.

Jia Qizhe frowned, “So expensive?”

“I say, young master. It seems like you seldom come shopping on this street!” The woman continued speaking, “Let me tell you, ah. The goods that I have here are the best and the cheapest on this whole street!”

“Best?” Gu Qingyu picked up a watersack, “This is called the best? Aiyo~ What in the world, look at this watersack! You just need to nudge it to know what kind of material it’s made of! Look here,” She picked up the watersack and put it closer to the woman’s face, “Look at this! This can be sold for eighty coins?” She threw away the watersack, and grabbed Jia Qizhe, “I’d rather buy an expensive one than one with poor quality! Brother Jia, let’s go!”

“Ey, you two…” The woman seemed to have lost all her confidence, “How can you just…”

Gu Qingyu pulled Jia Qizhe away, “We should tell others to never come and buy things here in the future. Let’s hurry up and leave…”

 

The middle-aged woman clenched her teeth, “Wait! Fifty coins!!”

“Thirty coins.” Gu Qingyu took a step back.

Jia Qizhe followed up with a blank expression on his face, “Twenty coins.”

 

Oh my god! He’s even fiercer than me at haggling!

 

The woman glared at them, “You… Whatever, twenty coins it is then! I just have bad luck today. Please, don’t come back!”

“Sure~” Gu Qingyu was secretly laughing inwardly, “Great! It’s not like we’ll be coming back here in the future anyways!”, “Thanks~~!”

Jia Qizhe looked at Gu Qingyu with open admiration, which made Gu Qingyu even more pleased with herself.

 

Before they knew it, the items started to pile up as they strolled down the street and haggled whenever possible. Although most of the stuff was carried by Jia Qizhe.

The costs of these things were all basically pushed down by Gu Qingyu to the lowest price, so they still had leftover silver taels.2

 

The corners of Jia Qizhe’s mouth revealed a glowing smile, “I never realized before, but having you tag along when shopping can be really useful.”

“Of course, do you not know who I am.” Gu Qingyu only thought of returning to the inn, “Hurry, let’s go back~”

“Why are you in such a hurry?” Jia Qizhe appeared curious for the first time.

Gu Qingyu rolled her eyes at him, “Dummy, did you forget that I asked Qi Yichen to bring me some snacks? What if we return late and the meat buns, roasted chestnuts etc. gets cold…”3

Jia Qizhe suddenly stopped. Gu Qingyu couldn’t react in time and bumped her head into him from behind.

“Ouch!” She rubbed her head, “What are you doing…”

Jia Qizhe suddenly turned around and looked at Gu Qingyu.

“Wh-what?” For some reasons, Gu Qingyu began to feel a little bit guilty, but she couldn’t put her finger on it.

Jia Qizhe said, with the utmost seriousness, “I’m hungry.”

“Hah?” Gu Qingyu tiled her head to the side, she couldn’t believe what she just heard, “What? Are you cray cray?”

“I’m hungry.” said Jia Qizhe again, “Let’s go and eat some meat buns.”

“…??” Gu Qingyu looked at him in astonishment, “You sure?”

Jia Qizhe nodded, and walked to a steamed bun stand, “Boss, give me five meat buns.”

 

Five?

 

Jia Qizhe came back with the meat buns, and handed them over to Gu Qingyu, “Eat.”

It suddenly hit her, “What Jia Qizhe felt wasn’t hunger, but that he wanted to buy something for her to eat!”

 

Mmhm, I’ll forgive him for the sake of his sincerity! But then again… he doesn’t seem to have done me anything that needs forgiveness…

 

Gu Qingyu nodded, and received the food. She took out two and gave the rest to Jia Qizhe, “Take it.”

Jia Qizhe seemed confused by her actions and didn’t take any.

“Here, take it. Didn’t you say you were hungry?” Gu Qingyu smiled at him, “Just eat one then~”

 

Jia Qizhe had bought these for me, wouldn’t it be too mean if I didn’t even share a single bun with him?

 

“Thanks.” said Jia Qizhe as he accepted the meat bun.

“You’re welcome~” Gu Qingyu fixated her eyes on the piping hot meat bun and took a huge bite.

Jia Qizhe suddenly appeared in front of Gu Qingyu. He had his bun stuffed in his mouth, while searching for something in his bag.

Gu Qingyu looked at him, puzzled.

But… Jia Qizhe looked quite cute like this, with a bun stuffed in his mouth, so fluffy.

After a short while of rummaging through his bag, he finally took out something.

“This is…” Gu Qingyu looked at the item: It was a very pretty, light-blue colored ribbon.

Jia Qizhe moved behind Gu Qingyu, and started to fiddle with her hair.

Gu Qingyu couldn’t move, because she was afraid of messing up her ‘dapper’-hairstyle, and could only open her mouth, “Hey, Jia Qizhe. What are you up to!”

Shortly after, he put down his hands and walked in front, facing towards Gu Qingyu, as if he was enjoying a masterpiece.

Gu Qingyu pulled out a mirror from her bag that she just bought for a bargain, and looked at herself in the mirror—

The blue ribbon was wrapped around a portion of her hair, tied up in a beautiful butterfly bow.

Gu Qingyu looked at Jia Qizhe, in a confused manner, “For me?”

“Yupp…” Jia Qizhe said hesitantly, “At first, I wanted to get those yellow earrings or that bracelet for you, but it wouldn’t match your current appearance, so I bought this ribbon instead…just treat it as the reward for today’s work.” He was rambling almost incoherently.

“Puu—chi!” Gu Qingyu burst out in laughter, “Got it! Thank you.” Having said that, this was the first time she witnessed Jia Qizhe in this kind of state…

“…” Jia Qizhe let out a smile and started to walk ahead.

 

Their shadows grew longer as the sun casts its light over them.

“Hey—Jia Qizhe, don’t walk so quick—Wait for me—”

 

At the Inn.

Gu Qingyu spotted everyone sitting around a table as she walked in, and the table was full of delicious food.

“Eh?” Gu Qingyu was slightly surprised, “You already finished ordering?”

“Yupp, just missing you.” said Murong Zuoyu with a grim look in his face.

“Huh??” Gu Qingyu sat down, “How come everyone’s so quick?”

“Because our assignments are rather easy~” Qi Yichen laughed, “Here, come and eat~”

Gu Qingyu scratched her head, “I… ’Burp’!”

“Brother Zhu, are you unwell?” Mo Bai looked quite worried, “Is everything alright? Why would you suddenly burp?”

“I…” Gu Qingyu rubbed her head, “What am I supposed to say? That I can’t eat anymore because I just stuffed myself with four meat buns?”, “Hehe~ I’m feeling a bit… unwell! Yeah, I’m not feeling well! I’ll be fine after taking a short rest upstairs!” She couldn’t even believe in her own fabrications.

“Then… are you going to eat?” Mo Bai looked worried, “Not even a little?”

Gu Qingyu shook her head as if her life depended on it, “No, no, thank you Mo Bai!”

For some unknown reasons, she always felt a bit uneasy when lying in front of Mo Bai… as if deep down in her heart, she couldn’t allow herself to lie to Mo Bai. Seeing his warm and gentle smile, it felt like deceiving him was an evil sin.

 

Gu Qingyu laid on her bed as she returned to her room. She placed her arm under her head and stared at the ceiling.

 

Suddenly, the door was softly pushed open.

Gu Qingyu followed the sound and turned her head, it was Mo Bai.

 

“Mo Bai?” Gu Qingyu was rather startled as she got up, “Why did you come?”

“Forgive me,” Mo Bai laughed gently, “You wouldn’t answer no matter how I knocked, so I went straight in because I was worried that something had happened.”

“Ah, no worries.” Gu Qingyu looked at Mo Bai, “Do you need anything?”

Mo Bai took out a bag of medicinal herbs, “Miss Gu, this helps with indigestion. You can just consume it by itself. And also, I brought some food with me, since I thought that you might be hungry later.” He placed the bag on the table, as well as a small bowl of rice and a couple of dishes.

Oh… Mo Bai had already seen through her transparent lies…

When no one was around, he started calling her “Miss Gu” again.

“Thank you.” Gu Qingyu knew that she couldn’t keep it from Mo Bai, and walked towards the table, “Mo Bai, only you know me the best~~!”

“Don’t mention it.” Mo Bai rose slightly, and courteously nodded, “Then I shall take my leave?”

“Ok!” Gu Qingyu nodded, “Byebye!”

“Byebye!” Mo Bai gave her a faint smile as he closed the door.

 

“Hehe~” Gu Qingyu sat down, she impatiently picked up her chopstick and started to feast. She had to admit that she was a foodie.

 

Someone knocked on the door.

 

“Pleash’ com’ in~~!” Gu Qingyu’s mouth was filled with food, “Uwu, thish reall’ good!”

It was Murong Zuoyu. He stared at Gu Qingyu, “You-… do you have nothing better to do?”

“I guess.” Gu Qingyu didn’t bother about him and continued eating.

Murong Zuoyu didn’t say anything further and just looked on as she ate.

Gu Qingyu broke out in a cold sweat as he kept staring at her, “Uhhh… how about, you join me?”

“Puu—” Murong Zuoyu actually burst out in laughter, “I am not a pig like you.”

“…” Did he just indirectly indicate that I’m a pig? What’s that! Telling a girl up front that she’s a pig! Wait a minute… it could also be that he doesn’t know that I’m a girl yet…

“I’m a pig, I’m a pig.” Gu Qingyu unhappily batted an eye at him, “Are you happy?” Putting him aside, she continued eating.

“…” Murong Zuoyu leaned on the wall and continued staring at Gu Qingyu, without saying anything.

“…” Gu Qingyu gave him an odd look, then continued eating, simply not caring anymore.

Shortly, Gu Qingyu began to realize that she couldn’t put any more food in her mouth—As expected, the condition was not the same after finishing four meat buns.

She raised her head, only to see that Murong Zuoyu was still smiling and staring at her.

“What do you want?” Gu Qingyu had a bad feeling.

He started to slowly approach Gu Qingyu…

Gu Qingyu suddenly felt a strong gust of energy whirling around her body, suppressing her and making her unable to move.

Murong Zuoyu looked at her, as if he was appreciating the constant changes to her expressions. A long while later, he quietly said a sentence, “There’s a piece of leaf around your mouth.”

 

Asshole! He played me!

 

Gu Qingyu turned her head angrily, but she couldn’t deny that Murong Zuoyu’s strength was incredible.

“Do you fear this prince?” Murong Zuoyu slightly narrowed his eyes.

Gu Qingyu raised her eyebrows, she didn’t deny it, “A little.” She didn’t wait for Murong Zuoyu to reply, and continued talking, “And also, could you please stop calling yourself “Prince” in the future? If not, all the commoners will be frightened by you once they hear you speaking!”

“What’s the big deal about that?” Murong Zuoyu was successfully shifted into another topic, “I often go out traveling in disguise, quite a few people recognize this prince.”

“Recognizing a cold and mean prince like you?” Gu Qingyu answered back sarcastically.

Murong Zuoyu furrowed his brows, and spoke in a cold tone, “You…” All of a sudden, he turned unusually silent.

 

Qi Yichen appeared at the doorway, “What you two talking about?”

 


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  1. Ancient Currency – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_cash_(currency_unit)
  2. Ancient Currency – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tael
  3. GIVE ME A PORTION TOO; I AM SO HUNGRY