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My plan ended up failing as everybody gathered at the garden.
Also, the number of chairs increased to five without me even noticing.
It must have been Anju-san who had brought it, right? When had she done it, though? She sure acted quickly.
Anyway, the people who had already sat down were: the queen, who was holding Hugging Bear in her hands; the king, who had abandoned his work; and Eleanora-san, whose actions I could never really understand.
「Princess Flora, how about you let go of Swaying Bear for now and sit down with us?」
I said in an attempt to get Swaying Bear back.
Princess Flora said and kept hugging Swaying Bear, which looked quite troubled within her arms.
I wanted to save it, but she would cry if I forcibly took it away.
「Princess Flora, I brought some yummy food, so why don’t you have some? You won’t be able to eat it if you keep holding onto Swaying Bear.」
「Yeah, it’s really delicious. Also, Swaying Bear is getting tired, so it said it wants to take a break.」
I glanced at Swaying Bear to give it a signal, and it let out a small yawn to seem like it was tired.
My Bears were well-known for their acting ability. They had already tricked Noa in the past and also threatened the villains who had come to attack me at the inn in Mireera by pretending to be man-eating bears.
After seeing that Swaying Bear was getting tired, Princess Flora reluctantly let it go.
「I’m sorry, Swaying Bear. I hope we can play again later.」
What a kind child.
Swaying Bear didn’t have to act this time and let out a real, happy cry.
Thanks for the good work, Swaying Bear.
I patted its head to reward it for playing with Princess Flora and returned it to its glove before she changed her mind.
Seeing Swaying Bear disappear, Princess Flora appeared to be sad, but stayed seated.
Hmm, maybe I should ask Sherry to make her a plushie version of Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear; Princess Flora would surely be happy if I presented them to her.
I looked over at my other summoned beast, Hugging Bear, which was currently still being held by the queen. She looked like she had no intentions of letting Hugging Bear go, though.
Oh come on, your daughter had given Swaying Bear back properly. Would you please give Hugging Bear back as well? Ignoring my silent glances, the queen continued to pet Hugging Bear while Princess Flora looked at them enviously.
At this rate, they were going to start fighting over Hugging Bear…
I decided to figure out how to get it back later and took out a whole shortcake out of the Bear Box.
Princess Flora’s gaze snapped to the cake. Great, I could avoid the fight with this.
「What is this?」
「It’s similar to the pancakes you ate before.」
「Oh, those? They were tasty.」
I set down enough plates for everybody then cut the cake.
Meanwhile, Anju-san prepared black tea on the other side of the table.
「There are strawberries inside as well.」
「I love strawberries!」
「It looks delicious.」
Just as I finished dividing the cake, Anju-san also served the tea. Princess Flora’s tea had milk added into it.
「Bear-san, can I eat now?」
Princess Flora held her fork but still waited patiently.
Was it because of the king? No, it was probably because Anju-san had taught her properly.
「Sure, go ahead.」
She didn’t waste time and started eating happily.
She said with a smile, and cream on her cheeks. Others started to eat soon after.
「This really is quite delicious.」
「Yes, but I find it a little too sweet for me.」
「Really? I think its sweetness is perfect.」
I just drank the tea Anju-san had poured for me and didn’t eat any cake. The tea was good; it tasted just like the one I had drunk at Cliff’s mansion. Well, it was a tea the king drank, so it had to be of high quality. The tea I had drunk while I had come here before must have been of high quality as well, huh.
The cake was being well-received by everyone; even Princess Flora, who had been down for having to part from Swaying Bear, now ate the cake happily.
Yet, the queen ate the cake while still holding onto Hugging Bear, giving me no opportunity to rescue it.
Hugging Bear, stop looking at me with those eyes. I’ll save you eventually.
「Yuna, you’re not going to eat?」
The king asked me when he noticed I was only drinking tea.
「Yes, I ate a way too much cake while taste-testing the recipes. Also, eating too much would make me fat.」
Hmm, perhaps saying that I was sick of it would be more accurate? I couldn’t get fat with my metabolism. Yet, one of the forks stopped moving when I mentioned getting fat.
Oh, just one?
It was Eleanora-san who had stopped eating.
Princess Flora was still eating with cream all around her mouth, the king didn’t seem to care, and the queen also carried on as if nothing had been said.
「Yuna-chan, this thing can make you fat?」
Eleanora-san asked, her hand holding the fork now shaking.
「Yeah, it has high sugar content. Well, that just means you get fat quicker compared to other food.」
「You sure know some strange things.」
「Yuna-chan, were you trying to make me fat?!」
Eleanora-san got mad at me suddenly.
「Of course not. Besides, a single slice won’t make you fat. If you don’t eat it every day, that is.」
「Really?! You aren’t lying, right? I will believe you, okay? If I get fat, I’ll be mad, though.」
Umm, annoying much?
「If it bothers you that much, you don’t have to eat it, you know?」
「Are you trying to bully me, telling me not to eat something this delicious? How can you even say such a cruel thing, Yuna-chan?」
‘Fat’ turned out be a forbidden word amongst women after all, huh. Maybe I should be more careful with using that word in the future since it only brought trouble when it was used in the wrong context.
Still, if she was that worried about her weight, she shouldn’t eat snacks at all. She would just lash out again if I mentioned that, though, so I kept it to myself.
On the other side of the table, the queen was eating without a care in the world. Did she not care if she got fat? I hadn’t seen her put on any weight in the time I had known her, so maybe she just didn’t eat much in general.
「The queen doesn’t get fat no matter how much she eats.」
Eleanora-san told me when she caught me staring at the queen.
「She’s a true enemy of all women.」
I must have been included in that group as well since I didn’t get fat either.
So, that was why I couldn’t respond.
「Yuna-sama, may I have a moment?」
Anju-san asked me as I went back to watching everyone eat cake and drink tea.
「Do you happen to have an extra share for the head chef?」
「Yes. You see, while I was preparing tea earlier, the head chef approached me. I told him that you had come to visit, and he immediately got excited.」
She explained to me with some hesitation.
Everytime I came here with a new recipe, I had the head chef taste it. If it was something that Princess Flora liked, I even gave him the recipe.
I cut two more slices of cake and put them on two different plates.
「Anju-san, could you give this to the head chef?」
「Yes, no problem.」
「Also, you can eat the other one later.」
Anju-san would be able to join us if it was just Princess Flora, but with the king here, it was a bit difficult for her to be that casual.
「Can I really?」
「Yeah, just let me know what you thought of it the next time I come here.」
「Thank you very much.」
She happily accepted it and placed both plates onto her trolley.
「Anju, we’ll be fine here, so you can take that to Zelef.」
「Is it really okay for me to leave?」
「Yeah. I know he is really looking forward to Yuna’s cooking.」
「Okay, I will deliver the cake to him, then.」
Anju-san said, bowed, and left the garden.
「Please forgive him; he enjoys your cooking very much.」
「It’s fine. On the contrary, I always end up causing him trouble, coming here without warning and bringing my own recipes even though he is the one taking care of your meals.」
They probably noticed that this was bothering me.
Me passing along my recipes often caused him trouble since Princess Flora liked to eat them, which put him in a bad spot. I didn’t want him to think he was an inferior cook to me.
Honestly, there was no point in even comparing us. I just happened to know a few recipes from a different world, but there was no way I could make full-course royal banquet meals the way he did.
Every person had their own field of expertise, and it was impossible for them to be the best in everything in that whole field.
That was why I had told them that there was no winning or losing when it came to cooking. All that mattered was making good food.
A while after Anju-san had left the garden, I noticed that Princess Flora’s plate was empty while she stared at what was left of the cake, so I cut her another slice.
「Thank you, Bear-san.」
「It’s a reward for being a good girl and letting Swaying Bear go.」
Unlike the person next to you…
「Is it good?」
「Mhm, it’s yummy.」
Good, maybe I should bring a different type of cake next time?
A fruitcake or a cheesecake might be a good idea.
「Yuna-chan, can I have another slice too?」
Eleanora-san said and timidly passed her plate to me. I couldn’t be held responsible if you get fat, okay?
「Yuna, one more for me as well.」
「I would like some more too, please.」
I put another slice on each of their plates.
It kind of felt as if I had become a maid.
Since everybody’s teacups were empty as well, I poured them tea just as Lala-san had taught me. Hmm, I hadn’t thought I would ever have to do it myself.
The king drank the tea I had poured him and said:
「What is this, you can pour tea as well?」
「You’re very good at it.」
The queen praised me.
「The maid at Cliff’s place taught me.」
「Oh, you mean Lala?」
「Yes. I added the cakes to the menu at my shop and wanted to serve some tea that went well with it, so I had her teach me.」
「So, I could eat this cake whenever I wanted at your shop, Yuna-chan? Maybe I should head home to Crimonia.」
「You will get fat if you eat it every day, though.」
「I won’t let you leave anyway, so no need to worry about getting fat.」
「You’re both so mean.」
As we were enjoying our cake-chat, I heard heavy footsteps from within the garden. I turned to look and saw Head Chef Zelef-san running towards us.
Zelef-san was a plump old man with grease all over him. Even though he looked that way, he was a dependable person and was in charge of cooking for the entire royal family.
Yet, this dependable person was now standing in front of us, completely out of breath.
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