"Work under me, your monthly salary will be… ten thousand crystals!"
The emperor said with a smile as he looked at Bu Fang with gleaming eyes and held out a shaking finger.
Bu Fang expressionlessly looked at the emperor and did seem to notice the emperor's shaking finger. His eyes were slightly unfocused as he thought, "Hmm? How much did the emperor say my monthly salary would be just now? Ten thousand crystals?"
"My host, as someone aiming to become the God of Cooking, your pure goal should not be corrupted by materialism. You must strengthen your resolve and not be affected by riches! You must use your own hands to create a beautiful future."
The system's solemn encouragement shattered Bu Fang's delusions, whose resolve was slightly shaken. The corner of Bu Fang's mouth widened into a smile.
Bu Fang indifferently looked at the emperor with steady eyes and simply asked, "Why should I work under you?"
The confident smile on the emperor's face suddenly froze and he said with a frown, "Because I am the emperor, the supreme ruler. Don't I have the qualifications to hire you as the imperial chef?
"There are countless chefs in the world who desire to enter the imperial kitchen, just to have a chance to cook a dish for me..."
"Is the emperor that incredible? If they wish to go, then let them go." Bu Fang simply said. His gaze was calm. He was neither arrogant nor overbearing. It was as if he was declaring an ordinary matter.
The emperor suddenly froze. Even Xiao Meng who was observing the both of them in a distance was startled as well.
When the emperor recovered from his stupor, the corner of his mouth was twitching. Bu Fang was probably the only person in the world who would dare to speak to him in such a manner… However, there was nothing he could do to Bu Fang within the store.
"Don't waste your energy. I won't be swayed by anyone. If you want to eat my dishes, just come to my store. As for going to that so-called imperial kitchen, I have no interest at all," Bu Fang simply said as he stood up. His tone was calm, as if he was simply drinking water.
The emperor meaningfully glanced at Bu Fang and nodded. He did not persist. There were some things where you only need to ask in order to know the result.
"What an idealistic and ambitious chef," the emperor thought. He no longer said anything as he narrowed his eyes and enjoyed the comfortable feeling brought by the Ice Heart Jade Urn Wine.
After eating for a while, the emperor finally finished his meal. As he cleaned his beard, the wrinkles on his face seemed to have come alive.
"Excellent! Delicious! It's been a long time since I've tasted such delicious dishes! You deserve to be rewarded!" The emperor said while stroking his beard, "As for the reward… it's hard to decide."
Bu Fang went into a daze. He did not expect the emperor to offer such a proposal.
The emperor held his hands behind his back as he glanced around the store. Suddenly, an unfathomable smile appeared on his face.
"Owner Bu, I've already thought of a reward for you. Ordinary crystals would be far too vulgar and you wouldn't be able to use expensive elixirs. I saw that your store still doesn't have a signboard, so how about I personally name your store?" The emperor benevolently looked at Bu Fang.
From his point of view, Bu Fang would definitely not reject this reward. With a signboard personally written by the emperor, the fame of the store would definitely rise up and become completely well-known within the Light Wind Empire. It was a reward far more practical for a store than crystals.
"Notice to the host, the store's interior furnishing are to be completed by the system. The store's signboard system has already been prepared. The host must not accept any signboard given by others."
Bu Fang already knew that, with the system's proudful nature, it would definitely not allow him to accept such a bountiful reward.
"I am grateful for your kind intentions. If you like my dishes, you can patronize the store often. As for the matter regarding the signboard, there's no need for that. The store's furnishing are well enough, so there's no need for any changes," Bu Fang expressionlessly said as he ignored his conscience and rejected the emperor's kind intentions once more.
The emperor was feeling really embarrassed. He was mercilessly rejected by Bu Fang when he tried to entice Bu Fang into working under him. Now, he was even rejected when he wanted to name the store...
The black-hearted store was indeed first class at being arrogant, but it had the qualifications to do so.
"Good, very good! Then, I thank Owner Bu for your hospitality." The emperor indifferently nodded with an expressionless face. He placed down some crystals and left under Xiao Meng's escort.
Due to the emperor's visit, many of the store's regular customers were unable to enter.
Xushi was originally planning to eat Boiled Fish that day. However, when he arrived at the entrance of the alleyway, he discovered a large crowd blocking his way. He was shocked by the imposing spectacle and only understood the whole story after asking around.
"My heavens, even His Majesty personally visited Owner Bu's store! I must immediately inform His Highness about this!" Xushi was startled. He could not care about eating anymore as he turned around and left.
At the same moment, the fact that the emperor personally visited a restaurant located within an alleyway was quickly spread among the entire imperial city.
The emperor was famous and the so-called celebrity effect was just like that. Fang Fang's Little Store had truly become renowned this time. Due to the emperor's fame, it was completely well-known within the imperial city. Almost everyone among the bigwigs knew about this information.
"What did you say? Did father really visited the store personally?"
On the left side of the Gate of Heavenly Mystery and within the majestic palace of the crown prince, Xushi truthfully reported the information to the crown prince. The crown prince's pupils immediately constricted and he suddenly stood up.
"Yes, Your Highness. The entrance to the alleyway was completely sealed off by Chief Eunuch Lian and his men..." Xushi said.
The crown prince held his hands behind his back as he paced a few steps. Then he raised his head and asked, "Xushi, Is there any news about the Blood Phoenix Chicken that I told you to search for?"
"Your Highness… there is news. It will arrive at the imperial city after a few more days," Xushi said as he bowed.
Ji Chengan nodded with a grave expression. "I don't know whether father found out about the Sage Herb Phoenix Chicken Soup during his visit. Once father finds about this information, I'll have to immediately present the Blood Phoenix Chicken. If father does not know… I will personally bring the ingredients and let Owner Bu cook the Sage Herb Phoenix Chicken Soup."
The crown prince massaged his fingers as the corners of his mouth curled up.
King Yu's manor, center of the garden.
King Yu, Ji Chengyu, was wearing casual clothes with his hair down. He was holding crystal dust in his hand as he slowly walked around the pond located at the center of the garden. From time to time, he would pinch a little bit of crystal dust and toss it into the pond.
Once the crystal dust entered the pond, fishes with various colors swimming in the water vied over the sparse amount of crystal dust.
A red fish, that was unable to snatch any of the crystal dust, immediately wriggled its body angrily within the pond. Its mouth opened widely and revealed a set of sharp teeth as it swallowed a fish that managed to snatch away the crystal dust.
A faint smell of blood spread into the air from the middle of the pond...
King Yu had a joyful expression on his face, but his gaze was slightly cold as he looked at the fish that devoured the other fish.
"If even a fish knows to compete, how could someone from the royal family be compassionate? Every single contention is accompanied by a bloody battle..."
King Yu softly muttered. Suddenly, a series of footsteps rang out from behind him.
Several figures appeared behind him. They were all wearing black robes and a faint amount of true energy hovered around them.
"You're finally here." The corner of King Yu's mouth curled up as he tossed the remaining crystal dust into the pond and slowly turned around.
One of the figures raised his hands and took off his hood, revealing a gaunt looking face. He had deep sunken eyes and there seemed to be a spirit fire pulsing within his pupils.
"Head elder of Soul Sect, Hun Qianyun, greets King Yu."