Chapter 96: Grief (Part 2)
Translated by Rook of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Ever since the angels’ and the fallen angels’ armies had established a presence in Noah’s Ark, things became constrained and stifling. Originally, the faeries and dwarves, who were slashing prices so happily that they even lowered the decimal points, were now as furtive as thieves meeting police when they talked about prices. Even Feisha and company had become extremely cautious. When they sneezed, they would use their arms to muffle it.
“Achoo…” Layton used his sleeve to cover his mouth again, sneezing.
Borja casually threw a canister of salt over, angrily saying, “Are you done or not?!”
Layton stared dully at his feet, at the broken fragments of the salt canister, mouth closed tightly. Borja wanted to turn back in satisfaction, but heard a ‘pfft’ sound.
Borja released his grip on the giant ladle very very slowly. The cafeteria was very quiet.
Fallen angels, angels and the participants of the Interworld Exchange sat in each of their corners (1). Black, white, every color under the sun, like athletes wearing team uniforms, became identical.Gin mixed cocktails, Feisha lifted a tray of drinks and delivered them to the tables. For the sake of fairness, the order in which he delivered the drinks was the same as dealing cards. He delivered cup after cup according to the table numbers, round after round. No one was neglected but no one had privilege.
Suddenly, the kitchen door was shoved open. Layton, face red, ran out as if his life depended on it. Right behind him was a vat of salt that was twice as big as him. Right at this critical moment, Layton dived forward, clearing two meters and three millimeters.
The vat smashed to the ground a millimeter behind his foot. The vat shattered and salt spilled all over the floor.
Feisha looked at the wary dwarves and swiftly guffawed and rushed forward to pull Layton up, “Haha, are you alright?”
Layton said, aggrievedly, “Borja, he…”
“He asked me to go in, right?” Feisha immediately drowned up Layton’s remaining words and then said in an extremely low voice, right by his ear, “You don’t want this place to turn into a battlefield between the dwarves and the fallen angels, right?”
Layton looked at his fellow dwarves, who were looking at him with eyes full of concern, and then he looked at the fallen angels who were watching everything with a cool eye and then quietly pursed his lips.
Feisha dusted off his clothes, deliberately saying in a loud voice, “Last time it was the ashtray, this time it’s the vat of salt, you are really having fun (2). But now that it’s so busy, it’s better to help everyone first.” He passed him the tray, “Since Borja is looking for me, I’ll go in first. You carry the tray.”
Layton silently took over the plate, giving him an expression that said ‘good luck’. Feisha smiled as tragically as Jing Ke stabbing King Zheng and walked to the kitchen, step after step. (3)
“Don’t come in!” A loud voice shouted, causing his foot to stop mid-step.
Borja covered his nose as he looked at Feisha, “Layton just farted. It’s so smelly! I bet that he must have secretly eaten garlic today.”
Feisha very steadily pulled out a napkin, covered his face with it and tied it behind his head before walking in, “Why didn’t you throw that vat more accurately just now?”
Borja said, “Because I didn’t think a frog could jump as well as a kangaroo.”
Feisha remembered Layton’s jump at that pivotal moment and had to admit that these things were really hard to predict. “What about dinner?”
Borja hugged a ladle that was twice as big as him, stirring the contents of the pot, stirring and stirring, “It will be done very quickly.”
Feisha gazed at the big pot and said in surprise, “Isn’t it cabbage, pork and vegetable rice cooked with soup? Why is it red?”
“Because I put in a basket of red chilli.” Borja’s laugh was rather strange.
Feisha looked at it and felt chilled to the bone, “Why does rice cooked with soup need chillies?”
“Hehe. Because those guys from Heaven are all holier-than-thou. Everything they eat is light in flavor. They will definitely find this so spicy that they won’t even know who God is. Haha…”
Feisha stroked his chin, “You’re sure that they’ll still eat it after seeing how red it is?”
Borja stared blankly, “I hadn’t thought of that.”
Feisha rubbed his nose through the napkin and said, “I have the… urge to sneeze.” This chilli was really too spicy.
“…..Although the jar of salt is gone, there is still a bucket of wine.” Broja smiled pleasantly as he threatened, “You’re sure you can also jump like a kangaroo?”
Feisha pinched his nose like his life depended on it.
“Help me think of ways to make those idiots from Heaven eat this!” Borja commanded.
Feisha returned, “Can you make them colorblind?”
Borja shook his head and said, “I can only make you colorblind.”
Feisha looked like a mourner at a funeral as he said, “Then I don’t have any solutions.”
Borja angrily retorted, “Then why were you a gangster for so many years in the human world?!”
Feisha 囧 and said, “Who said I was a gangster in the human world?” Just how did this kind of rumors start? Why didn’t he know anything about it.
“The human world is full of gangsters. Much more than in Hell.” Borja said as if it was obvious, “That’s what the Hundred and Twenty Five Multiplied by Two weekly publications from Hell all said.”
“Why don’t they just call themselves Two Hundred and Fifty?” This name was really…
“Originally, that was its name. But the human world began to use it to curse Hell, that’s why they changed it.”
“Why don’t they change it more thoroughly?” A hundred and twenty five multiplied by two was still two hundred, right?
“Because they have readers. If they change it too much, then what happens if the readers can’t find it?” Borja shook his head and said, “No, I was asking you for help! Stop changing the topic! I don’t care, I went through so much trouble, you better make those angels eat it!”
Feisha thought for a while and said, “Why don’t you use the green chillies with the pointy head?”
Borja jumped down from his stool with a thump, “Help me turn this pot upside down!”
Feisha wordlessly looked at the pot that was so big it could only be used for bathing.
To fit the atmosphere, Feisha actually allowed Layton to dim the lights to orange so that everyone’s feelings would become soft. Black and white wings also no longer looked so lofty. Enjoying achievements was definitely something one had to do by oneself. Thus, Borja very enthusiastically became the little waiter. (4)
Feisha pulled Gin and Layton to the door, “Later, if something hard to handle happens, remember, you must grab me and run.”
Layton said vacantly, “What kind of hard to handle things?”
Gin’s nose twitched, “I seem to smell something spicy.”
Feisha said, “Luckily, you’re not in the human world.”
Gin said, “What does that mean?”
“Police dogs will definitely become unemployed.”
Gin muttered to himself, “Is this a compliment?”
Feisha replied, “Of course. You should say ‘thanks’, and then I’ll say ‘you’re welcome’.”
“Ah!” An angel suddenly cried out lowly, standing up.
Feisha, Gin and Layton were connected at such a deep level that they all immediately knew that the ‘hard to handle’ something was about to happen. Each of them pricked up their ears, making preparations to retreat at any moment. Borja was a little annoyed because the angel had shouted too early. This would cause the killing range of the chilli to be greatly reduced.
“What’s wrong?” Uziel asked.
That angel slowly sat down and the hand that was holding a ladle scooped another spoonful of rice cooked with soup to his mouth again, “This taste is too wonderful!” Under the double assault of excitement and spiciness, his face turned red.
“Really?” Uziel skeptically tried a mouthful and then wrinkled his brow…
It tasted disgusting, right? Spicy, right? You want to shriek, right? You want to cry, right? Borja nervously gazed at the expression on his face. That was an exception. He didn’t believe that all the angels naturally loved spicy food.
Uziel pursed his lips and then smiled and nodded, “It is indeed very delicious.”
“…..” Borja stared with trepidation at the angels’ happy expressions as they ate.
Abdar reached out and patted his shoulder, “Not bad cooking. Borja! I never would’ve thought you have a natural talent for cooking. If Lord Abbadon knew, he would be very happy.”
“…..” Fuck your natural talent for cooking, your whole family are the ones who have a natural talent for cooking! Borja stared with grief and indignation at the satisfied customers. In his heart, he was so furious he couldn’t be angrier. This was definitely, definitely a prank! Why, why did no one notice?
He finally understood. The most saddening thing was that it wasn’t the steps of the prank being disrupted but the steps had all been completed, yet it wasn’t successful!
Feisha gazed at the figure that was exceptionally lonely amidst all the happy figures, shook his head and let out a breath, “Sigh. Hard to handle became a pot of delicious food… life is too dramatic, too comedic.”
Hearing that, Gin’s expression stiffened, staring at Feisha, wanting to say something but hesitating.
Feisha said, oblivious, “We had better retreat first. We’ll come back and deal with it later. Otherwise ‘hard to handle’ will become ‘handling corpses’.” (5)
Layton was full of fear of Borja and immediately complied. Thus, the three slipped away through the door while no one noticed.The corridor was very silent compared to the noisy dining hall, this was like another world.
“Layton, I want to eat apples, get me an apple.” Gin reached out a hand and pressed Layton’s forehead, turning him in the direction of the warehouse.
Layton was becoming dizzy from being turned around and said unpleasantly, “It’s not like you’re Adam, what’s the point in eating apples?”
Gin smiled, opened his mouth and showed his teeth. Layton turned down the corners of his mouth, lowered his head and went.
Gin retracted his teeth, prepared a new topic to discuss but saw that Feisha’s arms were crossed over his chest staring at him, “What is it?”
“Even if you wanted to send Layton away, you should’ve asked for two apples.” Feisha pointed at his own mouth. “One apple is really too selfish.”
“…..We’ll break it in half.” This could also be counted as a new conversation topic.
Feisha mumbled lowly, “Fortunately, it’s an apple, not a peach.”
“Nothing, didn’t you have something you wanted to say to me?” Feisha asked without thinking.
Gin hesitated for a moment and said, “I talked to Uziel alone for a moment just now.”
“Oh.” Feisha responded dully.
“Regarding Isefel.” Gin carefully observed his expression, prepared to stop him at the first sign of desperation.
Unexpectedly, Feisha only very peacefully called, “Gin.”
“Being a bat is pretty good, don’t change into a crow.”
“…..” Gin said, “How do you know I’m definitely a crow and not a magpie?”
Feisha sighed and said, “Because you look like a widow and not at all like a bride.”
The angel and the fallen angels’ armies had spent a happy night at Noah’s Ark. So happy that the next day, when they were about to part, they were rather reluctant. Uziel, leading the angels’ corps, even tipped Borja quite a bit. Of course, Borja himself had yet to receive it because right now, he was hiding in his room, savagely cursing every angel in the angel’s army.
As Borja’s ‘good friends’, Feisha and the other two very naturally accepted it for him. Shortly after the angel and fallen angel armies left, the Interworld Exchange ended. The three parties returned with some regrets. After all, the goods of the three realms weren’t enough to fill their appetites.
Gin and the others finally returned to the peaceful days of eating curry potato rice.
But peace was only ever temporary. Just as Feisha went back to the days of holding the dying agent he had fished out of the trash and then zoning out, Layton rushed in hurriedly, “Big news!”
With a sense of deja vu, Feisha threw the dying agent into the bin again. (6) Layton tilted his head to look yet his line of sight was blocked by the swift-moving Feisha.
“What was that urgent news?”
Layton stared blankly for a moment and then quickly said: “Lord Lucifer and Lord Michael worked together and fixed the changing fabric of space.”
Feisha nodded and said, “That’s great news.”
“But the fabric of space is still being distorted.” Layton swallowed, a difficult expression appearing on his face, “The day when the human world and Noah’s Ark will be connected is earlier than expected.”
“Huh?” Feisha said blankly.
“That is, you can return to the human world on the first of the next month.” Layton sounded a little like he was unwilling to let Feisha go.
“…..” Feisha’s mind was a sea of white noise.
Gin stood silently outside the door. Let Layton be the crow, he still preferred being the bat.
(1) Actually, it’s described that everyone was sitting 泾渭分明 Jīngwèifēnmíng, which is an idiom meaning something like ‘as separate as the rivers of Jing and Wei’. I found it hard to incorporate this in the translation so I left it out — basically, every party was keeping to themselves and sitting in their own corners.
(2) Feisha actually jokes that Layton is 越玩越大 Yuè wán yuè dà, which translates to something like ‘playing bigger and bigger’.
(3) Jing Ke was renowned for his failed assassination attempt of King Zheng, who later became Qin Shi Huang. There’s more info on his wiki page — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jing_Ke
(4) Borja is called the 跑堂小弟 Pǎotáng xiǎodì, which translates literally to ‘waiter little brother’.
(5) This is a pun — hard to handle is 不可收拾 Bùkě shōushí and handling corpses is 自己收尸 Zìjǐ shōushī. The pun is on the last two words of each phrase — shoushi — which sound very similar. Also, ‘handling corpses’ is actually more accurately translated to something like ‘collecting corpses ourselves’ but I was trying to keep the pun.
(6) Feisha is actually described to throw it away in a way that’s 一回生二回熟 Yī huíshēng èr huí shú. This is an idiom that means something like ‘unfamiliar at first, being accustomed after a while’. I wasn’t sure how to translate it and went with something that flowed, like, ‘with a sense of deja vu’ (since this scene is really similar to what happened in ch95).