Chapter 581 - Who is More Good Looking?

On this day, the people that Zhu Junyang brought along had a decent outcome. Altogether, they had caught six wild horses. The best horse that they had caught that day was the light buckskin colored horse that Royal Prince Yang had personally trapped.

As for Commander Liu’s group, they didn’t come back to the stud farm that day as they had traveled farther to find the other herd of wild horses. Three days later, they came back with eight proud and hard to tame wild horses. Although none of them could compare to the superior horse that their master had caught, every single one was still much better than the other specimens at the ranch.

Following that, Commander Liu and his subordinates began to tame these wild horses. Taming a wild horse wasn’t something that could occur in a day or two. Fortunately, Commander Liu and his men had learned from the experts on how to tame horses properly after they first arrived here. Other than the buckskin colored horse giving them some issues, the rest of them would only require a bit of time before they were ready.

Unexpectedly, the wildest and most arrogant buckskin colored horse was actually the one that got tamed first. Zhu Junyang was tough and unyielding and his equestrian skills were consummate. In addition, that day he was extremely worried about Xiaocao and poured his entire temper on this unlucky horse. The tricks and strategies he used on that light buckskin colored horse had left an impression on the animal. Thus, whenever the horse saw the prince, it was even more obedient and gentle than the other horses at the farm. Under the absolute suppression and power of another, what was the point of being a proud and arrogant wild horse? Could pride be eaten ah?

Yu Xiaocao, on the other hand, pitied this poor horse as she was part of the reason why it had been dominated so thoroughly by the prince. Every time she went to the stables, she would always bring some tasty snacks and special feed for it. Whenever the horse saw her, it acted like it was seeing its own mother. 

However, once it saw the fiendish shadow that was inseparable from her, it immediately held its back and didn’t dare to make a loud noise. Even when Xiaocao stuffed a piece of rock candy in its mouth, the horse acted like a noble born young maiden and delicately ate the food in a refined manner.

On the days that Zhu Junyang didn't come along, it would happily circle around Xiaocao, acting spoiled and using its mouth to gently pick at her embroidered pouch full of treats. It would even use its tongue to wash Xiaocao’s face and was actually more servile and flattering to her than Little Black.

In the blink of an eye, five days had passed and there was no news of seeing the white horse and its other compatriots. Yu Xiaocao felt a bit disheartened by this. Were her special tricks useless in front of this extremely hard to encounter divine steed? She thought for a bit and wondered if it was because she hadn’t added enough mystic-stone water to the sugar cubes at the time.

Yu Xiaocao, who wasn’t particularly good at concealing her inner thoughts, always had a hint of worry on her face due to this. Zhu Junyang didn't want her to become depressed and anxious over something that was his responsibility, so he decided to take her out for an outing to relieve some pressure. He knew his lass liked the feeling of a successful hunt and the feast that came afterwards.

About a few hundred kilometers east of the stud farm, there was a mountainous area that one of the outside tribes called ‘Jinalin’, which to them meant ‘white mountain’. It was said that, on the highest peak in that range, the snow there never melted. On clear and sunny days, one could see the distant white cap of the mountain, which explained how it got its name.

The people from the outside tribes who had been hired to help train the horses at the stud farm said that there were a lot of animals in that mountain. Many hunters longed to go there. However, the fierce beasts in there were incredibly vicious. Oftentimes, during blizzards, they would descend down the mountain and hurt people. Consequently, no hunter would dare to go into the mountain on his own unless they absolutely had to make a living.

Since people very rarely entered deeply into this area, there should be a lot of valuable medicinal plants available, secondary to the plentiful prey. Wasn’t the northeast also known for housing the ‘three treasures’ ah? Other than ginseng, the mountains also had reishi mushrooms, manyprickle, schisandra, Mongolian milkvetch, and other medicinal herbs. The little lass was well-acquainted with using these herbs and also liked to come up with new pills and medicines to treat and heal people. She should be very interested in gathering wild medicinal plants, right?

As for the fierce beasts, he was confident in his own abilities to protect her completely. It was the perfect opportunity to obtain some beautiful bear and tiger pelts to be used to create a splendid mattress for the little lass. He still remembered that during the Autumn Hunt, the little lass was very interested in tiger pelts. She also took quite a few tiger bones back as well and used them to make some bone-strengthening medicinal wine. All of the influential officials scrambled to buy some. In fact, the capital now had a saying: ‘A thousand taels of gold may not be enough to buy the Yu Family’s medicinal wine”.

Sure enough, as soon as Zhu Junyang outlined his proposal to her, Yu Xiaocao grinned widely. Her pair of large, pure eyes shone like the stars and they curved up in joy in the shape of the crescent moon. Her glowing little face seemed to beam with happiness. At this moment, the young maiden seemed to be imbued with a halo of light that struck a person’s heart. If it weren’t for that maidservant named Wutong by her side, glaring like a fearsome tiger, Zhu Junyang would have long pulled the little lass into his arms and kissed her silly.

Yu Xiaocao had no clue that the man next to her was already getting wolfish thoughts, stalking her closely. Her heart was very clear. The mountain range that Zhu Junyang was talking about was likely called the Stanovoy Range in the future. It was a famous mountain range and, in this time period, hadn’t been damaged by people. Thus, there were likely a lot of animals and rare plants to be found there.   

The northeast’s ginseng was quite well-known. If she was lucky and came across some wild ginseng, she could use it with some mystic-stone water and create some medicinal wine and cuisine that could elongate a person’s life! Didn’t her maidservant Yangliu want to open a restaurant that was even more famous than Zhenxiu Restaurant? They could take an alternate route and open a restaurant that only made medicinal cuisine to nourish a person’s body.

The first floor could be the consulting area. They could hire a few famous doctors to take people’s pulses and then, after observing every guests’ constitution and body condition, recommend some medicinal wines and cuisines. The teas they served to the guests would all be nourishing teas and the wines would all be nourishing medicinal wines. The medicinal food served there would all have the ability to nourish the body. What were the rich most afraid of? Naturally it was to die before they spent their money! There were so many rich merchants, high-ranking officials, noble families, and descendants of the imperial family in the capital. Thus, she didn’t have to worry about this new business of hers becoming popular or not!

Zhu Junyang waved his long-fingered hands in front of Yu Xiaocao a few times. She didn’t blink a single time and there was a dreamy smile on her face. She looked like she had suddenly seen a massive mountain of gold in front of her and he thought she looked quite amusing. Just what was the little lass daydreaming about again? Did his proposal prompt another money-making idea in that brain of hers?

The little lass always came up with more and more ideas to make money. Now, her family was among the wealthy in the capital. How many years had it been since she got there? If a few more years went by, would she become the richest woman in the capital? By the time he was able to marry her, would other people start suspecting him for going after her immense wealth? After they got married, would his colleagues start to think that he was an idle pretty boy who lived off of his rich wife’s money? 

Zhu Junyang couldn’t help but rub his face at this moment. Argh! He spent a lot of time in the military camps, drilling and doing exercises like all of the other soldiers and officers in the regiment. After a month outside, everyone else had already tanned into a manly and healthy bronze color. His skin, on the other hand, hadn’t seemed to have much change at all. In a group of brawny, tan fellows, he looked even more conspicuous. With that added onto the face he had inherited from his mother, didn’t he really resemble a pretty boy now?  

“Stop touching your face! You’re the most beautiful in this entire world, okay ah?!” Yu Xiaocao finally exited her blissful daydream and saw that fellow, who was as pretty as a peacock, touching his handsome face in a narcissistic manner. She flatteringly complimented him. However, all she got in return was that pair of alluring phoenix eyes glaring at her.

She had complimented him for being beautiful but he wasn’t the least bit grateful! If someone else had complimented her in that manner, she, an old maiden, would be incredibly happy that she’d forget what direction north pointed! Yu Xiaocao silently cursed him. Suddenly, she inquired, “When we’re gathering medicinal herbs and hunting, will Sir Su come with us ah?”

“Sir Su, Sir Su! Just who is he to you to make you always think of him ah?” Zhu Junyang’s jealousy immediately exploded. He had had enough recently! As long as Chief Steward Su was around, that lass’s eyes would always give off glowing sparks whenever she saw him. The gleeful look in her eyes was even more bright and dazzling than when she was counting money. He couldn’t help but sourly think from time to time that if Chief Steward Su wasn’t an eunuch with that type of awkward status, would she also fall in love with him at first sight? And treat him lovingly and wholeheartedly?

Yu Xiaocao was not willing to admit that she found Chief Steward Su’s elegant beauty to be charming, so she came up with a different explanation, “Sir Su is the envoy sent by the emperor himself and represents imperial power! We naturally must honor and respect him. If we go out on a tour, isn’t it polite to ask him if he wants to go? Aren’t I right?”

“Hmph! You make it sound like you have some lofty ideal! Do you think this prince doesn’t know that the thing you like about Chief Steward Su the most is his looks?!” The jealousy within him didn’t abate at all. He grumbled sourly, “Lass, when you were young and tiny, you used to salivate over me all the time. Furthermore, the first time you saw Chief Steward Su, you wished you could stick your eyeballs onto him! Do you have any womanly reserve in you?”

“How am I not reserved ah? Everyone loves beauty and that’s a fact! Me showing my appreciation off in a calm manner is much better than those fake fairies who surreptitiously look at others!” Yu Xiaocao was upset by his words. He made it sound like she was woefully smitten!

Zhu Junyang didn’t get any consolation from the lass and instead got pushed back by her confidently instead. Even more jealousy bubbled up within him as he clucked his tongue and exclaimed, “Then tell me! Let’s pretend our status and positions are the same. If this prince and Chief Steward Su stood in front of you now and you could only pick one person to admire, who would you pick?”

“Obviously I’d pick——” Yu Xiaocao almost blurted her answer out, but when she saw that bewitching handsome man in front of her pretend to act as if he was unperturbed but actually was very interested in her answer, she deliberately elongated her answer. She watched as he listened so intently that his muscles almost bulged out.

She sniggered and didn’t give the answer that he was hoping for, “Obviously I’d pick——the most handsome one out of you two!”

“So shallow!!” This was the first time Zhu Junyang had lost confidence in his own looks. He coldly huffed and then continued to ask, “Then tell me, between this prince and Chief Steward Su, which one is more your type?”

“You’re asking a girl so directly. It’s so embarrassing!” Yu Xiaocao covered up her delicate little face and pretended to be bashful.

Zhu Junyang naturally knew that she wasn’t someone who would get embarrassed over something like this. He grabbed onto her shoulder and asked in a serious and somewhat anxious manner, “Stop fooling around, quickly tell me! Who’s more good looking?!”

“Alright ah, alright! Didn’t I say it earlier? You’re the most beautiful in this entire world, alright ah?” Yu Xiaocao's way of saying this made Zhu Junyang feel quite dissatisfied.

He was just about to say something when he heard a gentle and full of doubt voice behind him, “Cao’er, who did you say is the most beautiful?” 

Yu Xiaocao slanted her body to the side to look past Zhu Junyang. When she saw the person behind him, her eyes immediately sparkled like a bunch of small stars and the expression on her face became more lively, “Sir Su, earlier, Royal Prince Yang was very jealous of your elegant and graceful demeanor, which resembles an immortal from a fairy tale. He simply forced me to answer the question of who I found more good-looking between the two of you!”

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Myst.2's Thoughts

Sanguine’s thoughts: Hahahaha I love Su Ran because I know he butts in just to annoy Zhu Junyang.

Translator: Sanguine