Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Gathering of Beautiful Men
Pei Shu, the man who invited Chu Yu to the event, was chatting with a few gorgeous men.
Immediately after he saw Chu Yu, he excused himself from the people that he was speaking to and walked to her slowly with a smile. "Brother Zi Chu, you're a man of your word." He then shifted his focus onto the three people around Chu Yu and asked in a curious tone, "May I know...?"
Chu Yu continued where he left off, "These two are my family members, Yu Zi Yuan and Yu Liu Sang. Zi Yuan's much more knowledgeable than I am. I thought he'd be more suitable to participate in a poetry recital, so I brought them along with me."
She gave Huan Yuan and Liu Sang new names as she spoke. After introducing both of them, Chu Yu then pointed at Yue Jiefei. "This is my good friend. His name's Yue. He heard of the incident that I experienced a few days ago, so he sent me here."
Yue Jiefei realized it was odd for him to be there. He then excused himself by nodding lightly and retreated to an inconspicuous corner to watch Chu Yu from there.
Later on, Pei Shu brought Chu Yu on a tour around the mountain top. He introduced Chu Yu to the people and they responded by telling each other their names without revealing where they were from.
Each time Pei Shu introduced a person, Chu Yu would nod at the person while smiling lightly. She was calm while her expression was casual. No matter who Pei Shu introduced her to, she did not seem to sway at all, causing him to admire her even more.
The main reason why Chu Yu had no reaction was that she had no idea about those people's background from their names alone. Hence, those names were just an abstract symbol to her without any deeper meaning. However, Huan Yuan went through a series of emotions while listening.
There were approximately 20 to 30 people here. Analyzing from their names, their closeness with each other and the information that he had, they should be descendants of half of the Southern Dynasty's upper-level dignitaries. To put it another way, if nothing major happened in the current politics, these people would be the new generation of dignitaries in the future.
Chu Yu did not notice Huan Yuan's stir of emotions as she had her attention fixed on Pei Shu. Unsure if it was an illusion, she thought Pei Shu looked much more attractive than he did three days ago. His skin seemed to be fairer and smoother. He was almost on a higher level of beauty now.
Although she figured it might be an illusion, Chu Yu was more and more suspicious now. If not for the non-existence of plastic surgery in ancient times, she would have thought that he had gone for a skin whitening procedure. Moreover, there was a faint scent that would come from Pei Shu's body every now and then. Chu Yu wondered if he was another Mo Xiang, but there did not seem to be such a scent when she met him a few days ago.
Pei Chu was stunned at first when he noticed the way Chu Yu scrutinized him so closely. He then came to a realization and said while smiling, "Brother Zi Chu, did you notice that I've got powder on my face today?"
Unable to connect those words with the person she was speaking to, Chu Yu was suspecting if she was hallucinating. She repeated almost by instinct, "Powder on your face?"
In the world that she was in over 20 years ago, no matter what, the term 'powder' seemed to be exclusively applicable to ladies only. She remembered a commercial of a cosmetic brand in which a lady with fair and smooth skin was pointing at her face while giggling on the screen. "Guess whether I've powered my face today!"
Chu Yu was watching a television drama at that time and would have to put up with the television commercial that was looped repetitively in between the drama episodes every day. That was how it was imprinted in her head and what Pei Shu said today jogged her memory that she had years ago.
"Yes." Pei Shu looked a little proud and said while pointing at his face, "I bought this peach blossom exclusively from Xinlan Marketplace. This powder's very fine. It feels like nothing on your face when you apply it and it doesn't come off easily too. Why don't you touch my face if you don't believe me?"
It was a special day, hence it was only natural for Pei Shu to make an effort with his appearance.
Chu Yu had yet to snap out of her shock. Pei Shu looked like an ordinary man before, but why did he have such a strange shortcoming? The people around him seemed to find what he said normal as if what he did was nothing out of the ordinary.
Suddenly, she thought of a possibility. She looked around and asked Pei Shu out of nowhere, "Do all these people have powder on their face?" Figuring she was among men who had powder on their faces, she could not help but shudder in disgust.
"Not exactly." Chu Yu was relieved to hear his answer, but what he said next irked her once again. "Half of them do."
Pei Shu then showed his kindness by educating her after noticing her shock of not knowing the trend in this aspect. He told her about the current trend. In this era, men wearing powder on their faces was a fashion just like the clothes that people wore. Of course, there were people who were born beautiful or preferred to look more natural. If that was the case, they would not apply powder on their faces.
If she were to give the powdering trend a slogan, it would be: 'Fairer! Smoother! Brighter!'
Chu Yu was secretly relieved and grateful that there were still normal men. Otherwise, she would really want to run away. It was a pity.
Chu Yu looked at Pei Shu with sympathy. Why would such a good-looking man (or even just passable) have such a distorted view of beauty? What a shame!
Pei Shu was thinking the same as he looked at Chu Yu. She knew nothing about powdering that it made him wonder if she had strict parenting or was even kept in captivity at home.
Most of the people who participated in the poetry recital were talkative. They clustered in different groups, talking about the philosophy of life and the principles of the world. It was crowded in there. Meanwhile, Pei Shu chatted with Chu Yu as they walked and he apologized to her when they were passing by the pavilion by the cliff. "Please give me a moment. I'd like to touch up my face."
He then took out a powder pouch from his sleeve slowly and tapped his face with a small, soft flannel.
Chu Yu shuddered again. However, looking at Pei Shu's expression that was at ease, she did not want to reveal what she was feeling. She convinced herself to treat him like a sister. However, it was hard for her to watch him after all. She decided to look around instead, and that was when she saw a young man dressed in blue in the pavilion.
Chu Yu had been chatting with a few beautiful men when she was further away earlier, but she just noticed him now that she walked closer.
There was a guqin placed on the low table before the young man. He folded his arms in the loose sleeves while staring at the guqin with his eyes looking down. His handsome face was stiff as if there was a layer of frost covering it. However, his eyes that were looking down made him appear a little gloomy.
There seemed to be an isolated air surrounding him as if everything happening outside had nothing to do with him. He did not want to bother anyone and he sure hoped nobody would bother him too. Just when Chu Yu wanted to ask Pei Shu about the young man, a commotion broke out, and many people were heading in the same direction.
"What happened?" Chu Yu looked over curiously.
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