The kitchen of the restaurant is burnt to a cinder. Fortunately, no one has been hurt. After this incident, Lin Dan’s mother Chi is completely shocked by the Yans and immediately gets a high fever. Lin Dan wants to fetch a doctor for her while going to the yamen (government office in feudal China) to sue them. She hardly sleeps all night.
However, the arsonists have already escaped, and Lin Dan is also an ordinary people with no power. Naturally, the yamen wouldn’t care this case.
After one night's ordeal, Lin Dan is exhausted. In order to appease her mum, she dares not to live in the alley again. They leave through the city gate before dawn and move to a house in the suburb. She is not afraid of the Yans, but she has to think about her mother's feelings and those of her followers.
So the next day, diners in the south district are dumbfounded when they find that the hometown restaurant has completely been closed. Yesterday before the Yans came to make a scene, the shop's business was originally excellent. Later, everyone took advantage of the disorder to escape their bills and took away a lot of food. They talked recklessly about Shopkeeper Lin's personal affairs and speculated on her behavior with the most vicious thoughts, but they were not afraid of her turning against them. Because they knew that Shopkeeper Lin had to earn money to support her family, which doomed that she dares not to offend diners.
But now, the hometown restaurant is closed! Shopkeeper Lin stops making money, just walks away like this. What do these poor people in the south district who have left their homes eat and drink? They have been used to eating the most authentic hometown food, and now they have to live back to the tasteless days before. Who would like to do that?
"Shopkeeper Lin, are you there or not, it's time to get up and do business!" Some people who don’t know the situation slap the door hard, but get no response. They are immediately anxious. They all do the most bitter and tiring work. They get up every morning to eat a bowl of noodles cooked by Shopkeeper Lin, and at night they go back to pack a small piece of marinated food to moisten their mouths, which has become a habit. This bowl of noodles and the piece of meat are their greatest hope and best consolation every day. But now they have neither noodles nor marinated meat, so they suddenly don’t know what they can do with it. They cannot help wondering what to do if they can no longer eat the dishes cooked by Shopkeeper Lin.
They become more flustered as they think much more, and they beat the door harder.
Those who crowded at the entrance of the lane yesterday to watch the scene of bustle and even plunder food also showed anxious look at the moment. From now on, they can only eat the most authentic hometown food in their dreams, not in reality. Although it is nothing more than food, it can have a huge impact on people's psychology and physiology.
"What's going on?" Brother Tang pushes the crowd aside and asks. Like everyone else, it has been his habit to come to the shop to eat a bowl of noodles every morning; otherwise he will be out of spirits all day.
Madam Qin Er stands at the corner, sticking both her hands on her waist and sarcastically says, "Stop knocking, there is no one inside. Yesterday afternoon, some people came here to make trouble and smashed the shop. These people also took advantage of the disorder to take away her food. At night, some thieves set fire to the kitchen and burned it down. Shopkeeper Lin dared not to live here anymore. She moved out overnight and I am afraid she will not come back to run the shop in the future. She also found me last night and said that she would sell me the shop for ten taels of silver. What a pity! Shopkeeper Lin has been made disheartened to leave the capital city, what a pity! I won't be able to eat my hometown food made by Shopkeeper Lin any more. I'm going to live on air! How has Shopkeeper Lin treated you at ordinary times, you have forgotten it? Please look around, in this south district, who is willing to give you free soup to drink? Who is willing to give you free pickles? Who is willing to put marinated meat in the vegetarian minced ingredients just to let you taste the taste of meat? You may as well forget her kindness, but you dare to turn around and rob her. You are all fucking animals! "
"Someone came to smash and set fire to the shop?" Brother Tang asks darkly, "Is Lin Dan hurt? Do you know where she is?"
"I don't know." Madam Qin Er dares not to be rash in front of Brother Tang, but she couldn't hold her rage, so she leaves with a snort of cold. Her eyes sweep those people who are now having their heads bowed and faces flushed, and their hearts are filled with remorse.
The cooking skills of Shopkeeper Lin are so good that she has already fed everyone's appetite. Now she doesn’t open a restaurant, and those diners will no longer be able to eat the delicious hometown food. The sorrow and hardship of leaving their homes have multiplied. The dishes cooked by Shopkeeper Lin are not only delicious, but also contain a hint of homesickness, which is enough to comfort the hearts of drifters. They have got her benefits, but they hurt her rather than help her at the critical moment. They are really worse than animals.
"If I knew Shopkeeper Lin would be so angry and not to open the shop, I would have taken any means to help her drive those busters away yesterday!"
"What's the use of your words now, Shopkeeper Lin has been gone! If I had been in the shop yesterday, I would have beaten them with a stick. "
"Today I have to unload goods of two ships. It must be very tiring. I planned to eat an extra bowl of noodles in the morning to have the strength to work. But now, the hometown restaurant is closed and there are no more hometown noodles to eat. I really can't gather my energy! Does anyone know where Shopkeeper Lin is? Bring her back, beg her to run the shop, everyone lives on her cooking! "
This is not an exaggeration at all. Whoever among the toiling people in the south district does not come to the restaurant of Lin Dan to eat a bowl of noodles before going to work after getting up early? The noodles she sells are delicious and cheap. The vegetarian dishes can be cooked with strong meat flavor. She will also give everyone a bowl of milky bone soup for free. Those who have a warm and delicious breakfast here will be full of energy for the rest time of the day.
When she ran the shop, everyone thought it was nothing but a meal. One wouldn't die without eating. But when she closes the shop, everyone seems to lack something important, and their hearts feel empty.
Brother Tang leaves the restaurant with his face as livid as dead water, and he is more miserable than anyone else. He doesn’t have to guess to know that those people to hit the shop, burn the shop must be the Yans, his heart is wrapped up in an unutterable disgust as long as he thinks of their cheap means. On the other hand, Lin Dan left silently, so he feels very sad, even slightly angry.
He told her for countless times that she could find him when she was in trouble, but she was still like ten years ago, she’d rather bear all the burden herself no matter how wronged she was. It seems that she doesn't need anyone, so she lives alone and stubbornly in the world.
Brother Tang presses down his secret pain and pity and strides towards the yamen in the south district. The government doesn’t care this case, all right. Well, he'll take care of it himself. Whoever smashed or burned the shop, he'll cut their fucking hands!
After Brother Tang leaves, the Weiyuan Marquis also comes and asks about the situation. He grins with a plump face. "Someone burned Shopkeeper Lin's shop and forced her to close? Good, wonderful!” Then he leaves. After a while, the son of the Duke of Yunnan and Guizhou also comes, sighing helplessly, "I planned to pack some unique snacks of Yunnan and Guizhou for my sister today. I have to break my word. Has Shopkeeper Lin been forced to never set up a shop? What a pity!"
Several luxurious carriages come and go quietly. When they get back, they all send people to look for Shopkeeper Lin. By the way, they check what happened to her in those days, and they find what the Yans did.
Yan Shouye treats Lin Dan as the little helpless wretch before, and is very proud to be able to beat her at the first shot. What’s the point of helping the Qiaoyuan Restaurant compete for my business? Does it matter even you are better than ever? I take your specialties, I’ll show no mercy, and you can go to the hell to keep your father’s company!
Although the fire which failed to burn Lin Dan to death destroys Yan Shouye's good mood for the day, he is not stingy with giving those gangsters who set fire some money for their good job when he learns that Lin Dan and her mother were terrified and left the capital city overnight.
"Keep watch on the alley where their shop is at when you go back, if they are back again, you will continue to burn, burn them to death. You don't have to worry about the yamen. I've already sent someone to take care of the officials. They won't disturb you." Yan Shouye hands them a silver ingot, and these gangsters from the south district hurriedly grab it and go away with gratitude.
"How is the business in our restaurant today?" He turns his head back and asks the second brother of Lin Dan’s father.
"The Weiyuan Marquis has been here with dozens of private soldiers to drink, the seats on the first floor are all taken, the second floor is almost full, and business is booming." He says triumphantly.
"The Weiyuan Marquis is here? Go quickly and deliver the best liquor of ours!” Yan Shouye thinks for a moment and then changes his mind. “No, I'll go and greet the distinguished guests myself and give me the liquor." He picks up a jar of liquor and goes to the front hall. He comes to the Weiyuan Marquis respectfully and with great trepidation. He flatters, "Dear Marquis, this is pear flower liquor brewed by my daughter. It tastes best in spring. Would you like to try it?"
He is very confident in his daughter’s skills and the Weiyuan Marquis will be well satisfied. In the past, he does send liquors to the Weiyuan Mansion, but he couldn't even get through the door. He has a hard time waiting the Weiyuan Marquis to be here. How will he not please the Marquis? As long as he drinks this jar of liquor, their restaurant will have a powerful backer.
"Is your daughter Yan Langqing?" The Weiyuan Marquis is asking.
"Yes, she is and now she works as an imperial chef in the palace." Yan Shouye says proudly.
The Weiyuan Marquis points to his empty glass and says with a fake smile, "Then fill it."
Yan Shouye pours the liquor at once, and then eagerly waits for the feedback, but unexpectedly, the Weiyuan Marquis suddenly raises the glass, severely smashes it on his head, and shouts at him loudly, "Motherfucker, how dare you fool me with fake liquor mixed with water! Soldiers, smash this fucking shop! "
"Yes!" The soldiers who have been always ready to fight immediately take out swords on their waists, cut tables and chairs, doors and windows, counter, all things on the first floor to pieces. The guests on the second floor are nervous but dare not to go down. They can only stand by the fence and look down. After about two quarters of an hour, the luxurious shop front becomes a mess. Yan Shouye lies on the ground groaning in blood, but no one dares to rescue him.
The Weiyuan Marquis still feels that it is not enough to work off his anger. He catches him and kicks him severely. He sneers, "I hate those who sell fake liquors the most in my life. It is your good fortune not to kill you today. Go back to burn incense and worship Buddha quickly!" As soon as he leaves, the diners upstairs also leave one after another, but there are still many people around the door, craning their necks to watch the scene of bustle.
The second brother of Lin Dan’s father runs out to help Yan Shouye. Seeing the mess on the ground and thinking of today's loss, he feels as painful as being hurt by a knife.
However, this is not over yet. Before the physician arrives at the shop to bind up the wound for Yan Shouye, the butler of the Duke of Yunnan and Guizhou comes again, holding a dead dog in his arms. He says that it ate the mushroom soup carried away from the Yans’ Restaurant and died. He has to drag them to the yamen. It is easy to know that this mushroom soup was originally bought for the young daughter of the Duke, who had no appetite before feeding it to the dog. If she really ate, who would have been dead at the moment? The young daughter will be in the palace to be an imperial concubine. Can the butler not report such a big matter to the yamen?
The butler doesn’t look at the dilapidated front hall; just let a few strong servants carry Yan Shouye away. The grievance drum really sounds in front of the yamen. This morning, there is fake liquor or poisoned soup, and the noise is so great that the Yans’ Restaurant's reputation is completely ruined. Even if Yan Langqing is favored by the emperor, will the emperor reprimand the Weiyuan Marquis and the Duke of Yunnan and Guizhou for her a humble chef? Can the emperor also clarify rumors to the people in the whole capital city? Impossible!
The second brother of Lin Dan’s father crouches at the door of the shop with his head in his arms; he wants to cry but can’t shed tears.