Chapter: 119 out of 513 – Treating the male lead and the supporting male character differently (2)
Ning Mingjie heard the sound of a window opening and raised his head to look at her. He was only ten paces way from her. If anything happened in her room, he would be able to clearly hear it.
“Can’t sleep?” He quietly asked
Ji Man’s lips twitched. Answering wasn’t good, not answering also wasn’t good. They weren’t in the unconstrained modern times. She couldn’t say, “Yeah. Come inside and drink a cup of coffee with me.” If she privately talked with Ning Mingjie in the middle of the night in this ancient world, she would end up imprisoned in a cage-like basket and drowned.*
* (T/N: A common punishment for adultery in ancient times.)
And so, Ji Man hesitated for a long time before lightly tapping the window frame as a way to respond yes.
Ning Mingjie faintly smiled. But since the sky was dark and a distance separated them, JI Man didn’t see.
He turned slightly away and simply said, “Don’t worry. You can peacefully sleep. I couldn’t fall asleep, so I’ll be here looking at the moon.”
Ji Man froze for a moment. His voice floated over again, “No one will be able to come near your room.”
Ning Mingjie was chosen by the emperor for his ability to protect him during this journey. Even though his intention was only staying here to protect her, Ji Man’s heart still skipped a beat. She couldn’t resist asking, “Aren’t you tired?
“I slept too much during the day,” Ning Mingjie honestly answered.
Ji Man went through her memories. She hadn’t seen Ning Mingjie’s shadow all day. She had thought he went out with the third prince today. As it turns out, he was napping.
Ji Man didn’t say anything else. She slowly closed the window, lied back down on the bed, and covered herself with the quilt. With someone outside guarding her, she felt a lot less worried and quickly fell asleep.
The night passed without any dreams. Ji Man woke up the next morning full of energy and wanted to go look for Ning Mingjie to thank him, but Errong said, “I think my older brother went to sleep.”
Ji Man nodded. After considering, she turned around and went to the kitchen to order the servants to bring the ingredients that she wanted. Ning Mingjie had worked hard all night, so she was going to make a few small dishes for him. Besides, it would be really boring just sitting around all day.
Since she had slept well last night, Ji Man was in a good mood today. She rolled up her sleeves and starting preparing two small dishes. Not afraid of the cold, she also made deep-fried snacks, as well as a entire Beggar’s chicken.
Ji Man busily cooked for four hours. She sliced and cooked vegetables, steamed cakes, and transferred the food onto plates.
On the side, the head cook was dumbstruck as she watched Nie Sangyu’s adept movements. She didn’t resemble a spoiled, delicate young lady from an aristocratic family at all.
Marquis Moyu had asked Gancao where Sangyu had went, so she led to him to the courtyard outside of the kitchen and quietly said, “Madam is cooking.”
Even from far away, they could smell the delicious fragrance. Ning Yuxuan raised his eyebrows. Could this woman have changed her personality and finally decided to fight for favor? Hadn’t she appeared nonchalant no matter how much he favored Jinse?
He lightly snorted before turning around and leaving. But after taking two steps, he stopped and said to Gancao, “Once she’s done, tell her that I’m looking for her.”
“Understood.” Gancao saluted. Seeing that the marquis seemed to be in a pretty good mood today, he probably wasn’t looking for her master because of something bad, right?
After Ji Man finished cooking, she stored the food in a bright red sandalwood box to preserve the heat and ordered the head chef to warm the food up in the evening.
Right after she had stepped out of the kitchen, Gancao said the marquis was looking for her.
Why was he looking for her? When Ji Man curiously went to Marquis Moyu’s room, she saw a flirtatious scene of Jinse sitting on his lap, while he was leaning against the cushioned couch with a smile at the corners of his lips.
Ji Man’s lips twitched, but she still maintained an excellent show of etiquette by approaching them and saluting. “My lord, why were you looking for this servant?”
Marquis Moyu looked at her, raised his chin, and rather haughtily said, “I’ll be eating dinner with Jinse.”
“Eh?” Ji Man felt confused. Why was he telling her this?
Ning Yuxuan wrapped an arm around Jinse’s waist and said, “If you have free time, you can bring over the dishes to here.”
The group had become accustomed to usually eating together after their stay at Li Province. The more people there were, the livelier it would be. Ji Man swept a questioning gaze at Ning Yuxuan. Was this an outbreak of prince syndrome again? If he didn’t want to leave the room to eat, then just have the servant girls bring over the food. Why was he asking her to deliver food?
But, since she was under his roof, she had to lower her head. Ji Man saluted and agreed.
Looking at Nie Sangyu’s face that didn’t show the slightest sign of disconcert or unhappiness, Marquis Moyu’s originally good mood suddenly dropped a little bit.
When would he see a normal woman’s emotions on Nie Sangyu’s face? She didn’t get jealous or resentful. She used to be so bold and shrewish, but now she was a like a pool of stagnant water.
Ning Yuxuan suddenly missed the previous Nie Sangyu. At the very least, she would cry and laugh. Although she was really bothersome sometimes, he could feel her care towards him.
But now, no matter whom he favored or what he did, she didn’t show any reaction. This used to be what he wanted more than anything else, but now her lack of emotion only annoyed him.
Ji Man didn’t notice Ning Yuxuan’s feelings at all.
After Ji Man happily finished eating dinner, she had Gancao deliver food to Marquis Moyu’s room.
Jinse felt somewhat fearful as she stood by Ning Yuxuan’s side. He didn’t seem very happy when he saw the dishes of food.
“Why does this look the same as the food that’s normally prepared by the servants?”
Ji Man innocently blinked. “Because this food was prepared by the servants, ah.”
Marquis Moyu paused. He raised his eyes to look at her. “You…”
“Never mind.” Marquis Moyu lowered his eyes. “Take it away. I’m not hungry.”
“Oh.” Ji Man actually went through with having Gancao take the food away. Anyways, she wouldn’t be the one feeling hungry later. 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2018 So Far