Hello, it’s been a while, anyone still read this anymore? I hope it’s a relatively smooth read~
Word count: 3596
Lin Ke Song thought Jiang Qian Fan would refuse, and didn’t think that he would walk slowly towards Montgomery’s direction instead.
“then I shall taste, what is in this drink.”
Jiang Qian Fan received the glass from Montgomery, and swished the cup a little. His demeanour was indifferent and quiet, his facial features endlessly elegant, even the action of swishing the glass was like he was going to taste vintage wines.
Everyone’s gazes consciously followed.
When he nodded to put the glass to his lips, Lin Ke Song started getting nervous.
She knew that all the flavours, no matter how slight, would be magnified unlimitedly. She felt that things she thought tasted horrible, to Jiang Qian Fan, will be a disaster.
Jiang Qian Fan only had a tiny sip, the whole scene of the party was silent, with only an occasional sound of children playing.
Lin Ke Song saw his throat move slightly, down the smooth lines, it was beautiful and sexy.
His eyebrows didn’t even lift, and his calmly said: “the sourness comes from grapefruit, raspberry, kiwi, the fishy taste comes from kelp, even though Garlic, green onions and leeks were used to attempt to cover the fishy smell, the taste is still obvious. The bitterness comes from bitter gourd and lemon peel. And the spiciness is because of mustard and Artemisia. Excuse me, are my answers correct, teacher Montgomery?”
This was Jiang Qian Fan’s precise taste deconstruction.
Montgomery touched palmed his forehead regretfully: “only a little sip and you’re able to taste all the ingredients? I was looking forward to having you drink this whole cup ne!”
“Very sorry, for disappointing you.”
Jiang Qian Fan’s voice was very calm, but the looks from everyone when they gazed over were full of shock and respect.
Here, no one will look down on Jiang Qian Fan because of his blindness, because they knew Jiang Qian Fan’s true ability and talent far surpasses their imagination.
“your sense of taste seems to be more sensitive that a few years ago. But do you want to know the results of the win and loss between Bruce and Lin Ke Song?” Montgomery smiled rubbing his chin.
“Not only did she win Bruce, she also wrote down all the right answers.” Jiang Qian Fan’s voice, was neither sad nor happy, steady as a mountain.
“You’re so sure?”
“I’m sure.” Jiang Qian Fan’s voice was calm as always.
Lin Ke Song looked at his side profile, and never thought that he would actually have so much faith in her sense of taste.
“Alright ba, Ke Song did indeed write all the answers correctly. Even the trickiest ingredients, Houttuynia and Artemisia.” Montgomery went to Lin Ke Song, and patted her shoulder, “I never thought you’d one day undertake a student, but at least now, I know why you’ve only selected Ke Song.”
Montgomery had said these words simply, but the gazes of the people surrounding them towards Lin Ke Song changed.
They no longer held slight curiosity or indifference to a nobody, their gazes had admiration, observance and even examination towards her.
Even Bruce walked over to shake Lin Ke Song’s hand: “looks like the ‘Masters competition’ will have a scary opponent like you. For the remaining 2 months, I will need to work hard!”
Lin Ke Song was a little in disbelieve, she had only tasted all the ingredients in the drink, why were the expressions of everyone towards her like they had seen the emperor penguin in Africa?
And Iris’ gazes had gotten even colder.
Montgomery went to David, the food association’s president, and asked smiling: “Hey, David, what did you think about the food for the party today?”
Lin Ke Song saw David and hurriedly look away, you gotta know, she poisoned him with the chaos of the tomato and eggs stew. Wish that he’d already forgotten her!
“En…… even though I know that it’s not from you, it tastes pretty good.”
“if it were a Michelin gourmet spy, what kind of evaluation will they give the food here?”
“Sorry, I’m not a gourmet spy. But …… I think the creamy carrot soup can receive at least a knife and fork evaluation. As for the other foods, they too are delicious.” David did not purposely give excessive praise to the food at the birthday party just because of Montgomery’s status in the industry.”
“Ah ha, thank you. Mrs Smith, what do you think?”
“As for me, I thought the ‘pig in the blanket’ was done really well.” Mrs Smith smiled, “Alright, the food at the party can’t be what Monica prepared specially for you ba?”
“No, it was prepared by my grandson Bruce! You must know that just a month ago, he had zero knowledge about the thing of the kitchen. But ever since that ‘Masters show’ his improvement has been amazing!” while talking about Bruce, Montgomery’s facial expression was full of pride.
David was extremely shocked: “Oh my god ah, I have a very deep impression of the baked lamb chops Bruce made that time! That flavour was totally from the depths of hell! But to have prepared everything today is too shocking! Bruce, you are indeed Montgomery’s grandson, the gene for controlling ingredients flows in your blood!”
Everyone started murmuring. And Iris went up to Bruce, praising him and at the same time exchanging cooking techniques, in a moment, Bruce became the focus of the party. many asked who his mentor for the masters show was, and under everyone’s praise, he kept reason, and was sealed as a bottle.
No one noticed Lin Ke Song, she too half a step back.
“if the taste in the mouth is unbearable, you can try the baileys cake.”
The cool voice was like a wind that passed by slowly.
Lin Ke Song looked over, and realised that Jiang Qian Fan was actually standing beside her.
When everyone was focusing on Bruce, Jiang Qian Fan had remembered her existence.
At this time, Song Yi Ran came over, he looked at Jiang Qian Fan, then said to Lin Ke Song: “Open your mouth.”
“Ah?” Lin Ke Song hadn’t had time to react, and a jelly bean was thrown into her mouth by Song Yi Ran, the sweet milky fragrance spread all over her tongue.
His laziness and comfort formed a very sharp contrast against Jiang Qian Fan’s introverted cold.
“I never thought I’d see you here.” Jiang Qian Fan calmly said.
“What?” Lin Ke Song looked at Song Yi Ran, then looked at Jiang Qian Fan, “You know each other?”
“I’ve only had the chance to dine at Mr Jiang’s restaurant. The food he cooked, had an unforgettable fragrance.”
“You’ve been to Mr Jiang’s restaurant?” Lin Ke Song looked at Song Yi Ran, and thought that this rascal had an 80 percent chance that he had a new girlfriend, and went to the high-class dining restaurant to burn money.
Song Yi Ran smiled without answering, Jiang Qian Fan only held on to the cane, a face of calm.
Even if it was under this kind of quiet atmosphere, Lin Ke Song still felt the surging undercurrent between the two of them.
Good thing Montgomery had another plan of a new game for the guests, the atmosphere got lively again. And Iris had found a new reason to bring Jiang Qian Fan away.
Lin Ke Song and Song Yi Ran leaned against the dining table, not bothering about the noisy scene in front of them.
“So, your mysterious teacher is Jiang Qian Fan?”
“in the Chinese food industry, he is the leading man, a chef recognised by European and American food sector, is said to be the uncrowned king.”
“this is the first time I’ve heard you give such great acknowledgement to anyone.”
“then, you’re staying in his villa.” Song Yi Ran tilted his head, and used that pair of that inexplicably heart wavering eyes to look at Lin Ke Song.
When the light fell on his forehead, his nose, his person looked transparent and clean.
“Right ah. but there are 2 more months, and I’ll be moving out.”
“didn’t you say, that staying with him is tiring?”
“ah…… a little……”
Excessive, eccentric, overachieving silence and what not is indeed really annoying.
But…… she doesn’t hate him at all.
“Then do you wanna stay with me?” Song Yi Ran turned and smiled asking.
“You? Aren’t you staying at Manhattan? It’s so far from Jiang Qian Fan’s villa! If he suddenly feels like teaching me or something, I’d still have to rush over from Manhattan? Forget it ba……” just thinking about it made Lin Ke Song feel it’s too much toil.
“Then…… wait till Montgomery’s party is over, do you wanna go back to New York with me?”
“Mr Jiang has probably already booked a flight back to New York.” Lin Ke Song shrugged her shoulders.
“Alright ba, I’ve lost to Jiang Qian Fan.” Song Yi Ran sighed helplessly.
“this makes it sound like you like me.” Lin Ke Song clicked.
“I’ve always liked you ah.”
Song Yi Ran lifted his head halfway, his voice was a little sad, and a little frustrated.
Lin Ke Song’s heart felt like it was suddenly given a squeeze.
He always used such a light and calm voice to say such important things.
And now, with such a serious expression, Lin Ke Song knew better than to take it seriously.
“Continue acting ba! Life is like a play, a play is like life!” Lin Ke Song purposely used a ferocious voice to say.
Montgomery’s party ended, Lin Ke Song went with Jiang Qian Fan to the airport, to get ready to board the flight to New York.
Before boarding, Lin Ke Song as usual made a trip to the washroom.
While she was washing her hands, Iris walked in too. Lin Ke Song had thought at first that Iris wouldn’t talk to her, because the women’s sixth sense told her, that Iris really hated her right now. But unexpectedly, Iris went up to Lin Ke Song.
“Montgomery’s party is really exhausting ba?” she said smiling.
“En, many people wish to and are afraid of going to his party. To be able to be invited by him, means that he recognises the status of the person in the industry. But he is an infamous trickster, teasing and provoking people every year on his birthday.”
“Right ah.” Lin Ke Song wanted to leave.
But Iris spoke again: “Bruce surprised everyone. Even though he’s close to his grandfather, he has never been interested in cooking and food. But this time, he was able to plan and entertain a lunch party for over 50 guests of the restaurant industry elites and large figureheads, everyone never gave any negative view, can see that it’s evident that he has the ability. No matter who his mentor is, his ability is enough for him to enter the top 5 of the competition. But what about you? Lin Ke Song, if it were you, would you have been able to do what Bruce did?”
Lin KE Song was stunned, she frowned: “Chef Quentin, what are you trying to say?”
If you have anything you are displeased with, please be upfront about it, if you hate Lin Ke Song then don’t get close to her, and even more so, don’t say ambiguous words and what not that need people to figure the meaning, her English isn’t that good.
“What I want to say is, maybe Mr Jiang didn’t bring this up seriously before, but as long as you stand on the competition grounds of ‘Masters show’, everyone will know that you’re Jiang Qian Fan’s student! Your standard does not only represent you, it includes Mr Jiang. Can you cook a complete dish? Can you fulfill the pickiness of every guest today? Maybe, your exceptional sense is the reason that made Mr Jiang notice you and be willing to mentor you, but do you think it’s enough to only have this?”
One of Iris’ hands adhered to the sink, facing Lin Ke Song.
In her eyes was strong oppression that she’d never experienced before, in front of her, it was like she was an ant that could be easily stepped to death.
“do you think that if you work hard now, you’d be able to catch up to Bruce? Bruce is only one of the 10 contestants in the competition, there are other competitors that are mentored by other great chefs. Even though their initial cooking skills is as bad as yours, they have very strong plasticity, the will be like a sponge and absorb all information that has to do with food and improve quickly. You? Compared to where you started, is your improvement enough?”
Lin Ke Song didn’t answer Iris, because she couldn’t answer.
Bruce…… after all, he’s Montgomery’s grandson, under Montgomery’s influence, compared to others he’s obviously at more of an advantage.
“you are only dawdling around at Mr Jiang’s. your goal has never been to be the top 3 in the competition, you only wish to go as far as you can, you only see those prizes of a few thousand USD. You have no pursuit for the culinary arts, you don’t even understand the art of food! You don’t have the heart of dedication to winning, with you like this, you’ve already lost from the start!”
“I know you don’t like me, and because of Mr Jiang’s tutelage and care it has made you uncomfortable, but…… you don’t really understand me, so please don’t be in such a hurry to criticise me.” Lin Ke Song fastened the edge of the basin.
It was the first time she was so peeved, this kind of anger was totally different from when girls who used to like Song Yi Ran bothered her.
Her chest felt really suffocated, to Iris, she was just a clown!
Then what did she study cooking books till late at night for? Then what did it mean when she stayed in the kitchen for a whole night just to make a bowl of mushroom pork noodles that Jiang Qian Fan would be pleased with? Stay by Jiang Qian Fan, this ice block’s side just for a few thousand USD?
“indeed, I don’t understand you, but I understand Jiang Qian Fan. I understand the hard work he put in to get all he has today, whether it’s the recognition from the food industry or the respect from the gourmets. He’s perfect, at least he’s currently so in the food industry. Every dish he makes is flawless. And you, when you are eliminated from the ‘masters show’, you will give him his first flaw.”
After saying so, Iris used a paper towel to wipe her hands, and walked out of the washroom.
At the moment she brushed past Lin Ke Song, for the first time, Lin Ke Song felt like she was going to split apart.
She suddenly didn’t know how to walk, and could only hold onto the sides of the basin, lowering her head. She shouldn’t let her feelings be influenced by Iris.
But Iris was speaking the truth, she knew that.
The perfection of Jiang Qian Fan, Lin Ke Song may not have known in the past, she hated his coldness, his indifference, his pride, his dedication…… but every second she stayed at his side, he gained another point of perfection in her heart.
She couldn’t imagine how Jiang Qian Fan went through the 8 lonely years, she only saw the scars between his slender and elegant fingers.
All the respect and honour that he had won, wasn’t easily gained.
And with her like this, how could she represent him?
If she lost, and be eliminated even before entering the top 8, how will people talk about Jiang Qian Fan?
Maybe everyone will say, Jiang Qian Fan is a legend, but he too has a limit…… unlike Montgomery who has many outstanding students, Jiang Qian Fan can’t even produce a decent chef? And to correct this flaw, will he need to use many years and much hard work again?
Lin Ke Song shook her head. She was only a nobody, how would she be able to cause such a huge impact on Jiang Qian Fan’s life.
Even so, Lin Ke Song’s eyes inexplicably teared.
She could stay in the same villa as Jiang Qian Fan, follow him and even walk beside him…… but she will always be so far away from him.
He knew that even if she lost, and no matter how much everyone will talk, he will be immune to fame and fortune, wonderfully alone.
Lin Ke Song looked up, and let the tears return to her eyes, she wiped her face clean, forced a smile, and walked out of the washroom.
In the vip hall, Jiang Qian Fan sat on the sofa, and Iris held the newspaper and read the news to him.
Iris knew all of Jiang Qian Fan’s habits and likes, knew what he needed at what time, and knew how to go about respecting him.
Unlike her, a reckless intruder.
Lin Ke Song sat quietly not far away from him, and lowered her head scrolling her phone.
She started searching for specific information pertaining to ‘Masters show’, like the results of forfeiting the competition.
She knew that she’d signed a contract, and there was a clause, that if she were to withdraw from the competition, she’d have to get the agreement of the mentor, because the mentor would then be faced with 2 options. The first, is to directly abandon the competition; the second choice is to accept another student that the committee arranges, but the time frame will not change. If Lin Ke Song were to abandon the competition now, Jiang Qian Fan will be left with only 2 months to teach the other student.
Lin Ke Song exhaled, even though it was only a thought of the moment, but no matter how she thought about it, if she were to withdraw or give up at this point, it’d be irresponsible towards Jiang Qian Fan.
of course…… if he were willing to withdraw……
originally, he wasn’t willing to mentor her ba? It was only because Mayer had brought her to see him, and he discovered that she didn’t believe in his ability. With Jiang Qian Fan’s personality, complete disdain for this kind of competition.
“Lin Ke Song.”
Jiang Qian Fan’s voice sounded at her ear.
“Yes?” all of Lin Ke Song’s thoughts were captured by the other party’s voice, lifting her head up, she saw Jiang Qian Fan’s beautifully handsome face.
When did he walk over?
“they’ve already started boarding.” After saying so, Jiang Qian Fan then walked slowly towards the tunnel.
“called you many times before, and only saw you staring blankly at your phone.”
Iris smiled meaningfully. She obviously knew the reason for Lin Ke Song’s daydreaming.
She confirmed that she had affected Lin Ke Song’s mood.
Lin Ke Song inhaled, and stood up, following Jiang Qian Fan.
This time in first class, Lin Ke Song’s seat was next to Jiang Qian Fan’s, and Iris’ seat was on the opposite side.
“I’ll swop with Iris ba.”
Lin Ke Song planned with good grace to give her seat to Iris. She and Jiang Qian Fan had more in common, and knew how to take care of him.
As Iris was about to agree, Lin Ke Song’s wrist was steadily held on to.
That kind of feeling and strength, was the same as before that game, when she wanted to move to the other side of Song Yi Ran but was grabbed on by Jiang Qian Fan.
“Just sit here, there’s no need to swop.”
“Right ah, it’s only reading the papers and things like that, you can do it too.” Even though Iris said so, her gaze was the kind that gave Lin Ke Song an uncomfortable feeling.
Lin Ke Song could only take a seat.
The plane took off, the cabin crew checked that everyone had their seat belt on, and started broadcasting the safety instructions.
And all of Lin Ke Song’s feeling was focused on the Jiang Qian Fan who was beside her. His indifferent and handsome side profile, made people uncontrollably stare at him.
Her hand rested gently on the armrest, the roar of the engine at her ear, the slight tilt of her body, and the take-off started.
At that moment, something covered the back of her hand, that safe and familiar yet a little unfamiliar warmth made Lin Ke Song turn her head. She never thought, that Jiang Qian Fan too would be facing her direction slightly.
Even though the engine was loud, she could hear clearly, he was asking her: “What’s up with you?”
Lin Ke Song looked at him, he said it in mandarin, and chose this moment, like it was so that she could understand, and planned that only she could hear.
The world that Iris carved for the both of them, Lin Ke Song always felt that she could never enter.
But at this moment, Lin Ke Song had a notion that Jiang Qian Fan had purposely carved a world that belonged only to her.
“Nothing.” Lin Ke Song replied smiling.
She knew she was lying, at the moment, she was hesitant, her mood was low, she knew that she who was always “blocking when soldiers come, using soil to block water (T/N: tackling different situations with the appropriate solution) had failed. At this moment, her only hope was, that the sensitive Jiang Qian Fan…… wouldn’t see through her.
T/N: Does the bathroom talk that went on between LKS and Iris really happen in real life? And with that intensity? For a moment there, when Iris was talking I felt suffocated too man!!
p.s. Ah, I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned this, but the sentences have commas popping up or missing in weird places because I’m trying to keep the structure as similar to the original text as possible. So something that warrants a comma in the english sentence sometimes is missing because it is a connected sentence without any commas in the chinese sentence. And sometimes something that has a comma that isn’t in the most appropriate place is there because, in the chinese text, a comma was placed there. Which means Grammarly is just not kind. ಥ⌣ಥ
But every once, twice, thrice or more times in a chapter, I swop portions of the sentence, because it simply won’t make sense if directly translated.
So, would you like the sentences changed to be highlighted or will it be okay if they aren’t?