Chapter 13: Sweetness
I knocked on the director’s office door.
A reply came immediately from within so I said, “Excuse me” and entered. The Director was reading some documents at his desk.
“Excuse me. I want to discuss something with you, do you have any time?”
“I don’t mind, what is it?”
The Director turned away from the documents and looked at me.
There was something that I wanted so I wanted to discuss if we were able to order it.
“It is about this. Would you be able to order it?”
I said as I passed the memo to the Director.
The Director read it and looked dubious.
I thought so.
The things written on the memo have nothing to do with work.
“Honey, sugar and lemon. What on earth are you using it for?”
“I thought about making some sweets.”
Yes, the ingredients written on the memo are for making sweets.
Honestly, I was worried about whether or not this world had the ingredients I wanted but I confirmed it with Jude so I thought I should finally make it.
When I was a student I always made sweets at home.
After becoming a working adult, I stopped making them.
“I was thinking about making it for myself so I am planning to pay for it. I thought that I could purchase it together with the food for the dining hall.”
“For yourself? So you’ll be the only one eating it?”
The things I planned to make this time were for myself, so I planned on properly paying for the expenses. But that wasn’t the part that the Director caught onto.
No, I didn’t plan on eating it by myself, you know?
Do you also want to eat it, Director?
Well then, should I ask the Chef to help me out and make some for the researchers as well?
“If it is like that then the ingredients written on the memo are not enough.”
“Then add the necessary ingredients to the dining hall ordering form and bring it to me.”
“Is that alright? I thought that honey and sugar are expensive?”
“I will only pay for myself, you know?”
“Who said that you’d pay?”
“No way, are you taking it from……”
“There’s no way I’ll do that.”
The Director sighed in amazement.
But Jude told me that sweet ingredients like honey and sugar were precious in the world, which was the reason why it was so expensive.
I think it’d be quite expensive if we purchased such high-quality food for the researchers as well, you know?
The dining hall has a food budget, right? So it’s impossible to include those ingredients in the budget, right? Therefore it wasn’t strange for me to think that it’d be taken from the research funds.
Will the Director personally pay for it?
“Well, you don’t have to worry about it.”
The Director, saw that I was worrying over who would be paying for the ingredients, smiled wryly and waved his hands as if telling me to leave.
The ingredients that I asked the Director for arrived a few days later.
I went to the corner of the kitchen early in the morning on my day off and began preparing the ingredients.
Of course, it was difficult for me to make everything for the researchers as well, so I cooked with the Chef.
Previously when I told him about making sweets he asked me to tell him the recipe, so this was perfect.
Oh yeah, at the beginning there was only one Chef at the dining hall but now there were five.
They worked in a rotation of three so not all five Chefs were here at once.
The rumour that the research institute’s dining hall has delicious food seemed to have spread to the Royal Palace and they dispatched people to learn from us.
In addition to that, since this morning I put in a lot of effort to make sweets with the Chef.
I made simple cookies and pound cakes with honey and lemon.
I only vaguely remember the recipe but it seemed that it came together nicely.
I’m glad. That’s good.
The pound cakes that I take out from the oven are nicely baked.
The other Chefs who were preparing lunch also sampled it with me. I got a positive response from them.
A nice smell drifted from the oven, so the chefs who were preparing lunch kept glancing over here.
They seemed curious so I decided to invite them to sample it with me.
The cake sample tasted perfect so I cooled the down the rest and cut it up before putting it in a basket. Now it’s ready.
I’ll entrust the rest to the Chef to give to the Director and researchers. My goal today is to go to the 3rd Knight Order barracks. Let’s go!
Yup, was my tension too high?
If it wasn’t this high then I can’t go!
Today I was going to the 3rd Knight Order barracks for a certain reason.
I thought about giving my thanks to the Captain.
I’ve been worrying over it ever since Jude told me about the price. I thought it was too much.
No matter how much the other person favoured me.
Then I got a core from magic bestowal, so I used it to make an accessory for him.
I was troubled over various things but I made a necklace.
Since he wielded a sword, I thought a ring would be troublesome and I had a feeling that he didn’t have any piercings so he couldn’t wear earrings. I thought that a necklace wouldn’t get in the way of anything.
I didn’t know which designs were common in this world, but I made it into a dog tag that men can also wear.
I engraved a cross in the middle and embed the core into the middle of that.
I think that it’s an acceptable design.
Still I couldn’t make it by myself, so I outsourced it.
The shop was introduced to me by the Director.
He had a frightful smirk on his face though.
It was a little embarrassing just to take the necklace with me so I also brought cookies and the pound cake.
I think that it’s fine to just give him the basket.
I arrived at the captain’s office.
The Knight standing at the door smiled at me and announced my presence. He didn’t mistake me for a suspicious person.
What does it mean when I haven’t even introduced myself yet and he’s already announced my presence?
I don’t remember sending a messenger from the research institute to tell them I was coming.
It’s probably that, right? I shouldn’t always go horse riding with the Captain.
I know it isn’t good to do so since rumours float about, but it’s hard to refuse him when he invites me so I continue to go horse riding with him.
Soon after bracing myself at the entrance, the Knight opened the door and I entered. The Captain was doing paperwork at his desk like usual.
Even if they’re a Knight Order, they didn’t always train and go on demon subjugations. The people at the top have a lot of paperwork to do.
“What’s wrong today?”
“I made some sweets, so I came to share them with you.”
As I said the words I prepared in advance, the Captain’s face softened.
Yup, sorry, I can’t look at you directly.
Please don’t ask me!
When I gave the Captain the basket, he took off the cloth and looked inside.
At first glance, it looked like there were only cookies and pound cake inside.
Actually, the box containing the necklace is thrusted into the corner. It’s hidden by the cookie so he can’t see it.
“It looks delicious. Let’s hurry up and eat it.”
The Captain confirmed that there were cookies and pound cake inside and stood up with the basket.
Was it time for his break?
I hope I didn’t disturb him.
Well then, I’ve handed over the basket, so I suppose I should head back now.
I thought and tried to say my farewells but he said, “If you don’t mind, would you like to join me?”
No, I want to leave before you notice the necklace inside of the basket……
I couldn’t win against the smiling face of the Captain……
I gave up and sat on the sofa as advised.
Mhm, why are you sitting next to me?
There are sofas over there too, you know?
Was it weird for me to sit on a three seater sofa? The Captain sat next to me.
I’m perplexed by the distance between us but I didn’t feel the need to run away like before. Did I get used to the distance while horse riding with him?
I’m scared of getting used to it.
I don’t know, it feels like the places I can escape to have been steadily decreasing.
A while later, tea was brought out and the gentle aroma of tea hung in the air.
The Knight standing at the door seemed to have noticed and requested for a maid.
The amber liquid in front of my eyes was a luxury good, one that I haven’t drank since coming here.
I took a sip of my drink. The astringency was just right and it was very easy to drink.
As expected of tea from the Royal Palace.
They use good tea leaves, huh?
For some reason, the maid brought some plates, so I took the cookies and pound cake out from the basket and handed it to the Captain.
Mr. Knight at the entrance, did you notice that I brought sweets with me?
Ah, did you notice from the smell?
“I’m not really good with sweet food but this is delicious.”
The Captain seemed to favour the mildly sweet cookies. He took a bite of the cookie and smiled.
Of course I’m glad he’s so pleased with it.
When I saw that, I was also caught up in the mood and smiled. The Captain looked at me and his smile deepened.
An ikemen’s smile has high attack power.
I feel my face getting a little hot.
No, no, looking at him in the eyes is bad.
“By the way, it’s been bothering me for a while but……”
The Captain took the necklace box out of the basket while drinking tea after he finished eating.
I choked but I wanted someone to compliment me because I didn’t spurt out any tea.
Wai-, I hid it so why did he notice?!
“It feels that this has been bestowed with magic. What is it?”
My eyes wandered about as I tried to think of an explanation.
This is useless. I can’t think of anything.
I glanced at the Captain and he looked like he was happily anticipating something while staring at me.
“That is also for you. It is my thanks for the hair ornament.”
I was making no progress even if I think about it, so I answered honestly.
As soon as I told him that, the Captain’s smile became wider, he nodded and asked, “Can I open it?”
“I went to the Court Mage Division the other day and did magic bestowal. I made that core but……”
It was painful for me to wait silently for the Captain to open the box, so I told him that I made the core.
As soon as the Captain opened the box and saw what was inside, his eyes widened.
“The core is bestowed to increase magic resistance. I thought that you could use it when you go out on subjugations.”
I could tell that my face was burning while I was explaining it to him.
It was embarrassing, so I looked away from the Captain and because I was thinking about tomorrow, I didn’t notice it until it was too late.
I returned my gaze when I felt something touch my right hand. The Captain lifted my hand up.
He didn’t do it in slow motion, but I felt as if time was slowing down.
I looked at the Captain’s eyelashes and carelessly thought, “Wow ~, it’s long”. I’m definitely escaping from reality.
I felt it afterwards. A soft feeling touched my fingertips.
The Captain’s feverish look as he released his lips from my fingertips.
That was all I remembered.
I didn’t know how I returned to the research institute after that.
At a certain Court Mage Division.
The silver haired Mage, who was approving documents like usual, frowned as he read the contents of the submitted document.
The invoices attached to the document were for: wheat, sugar, honey, lemon and so on. It was full of items that had nothing to do with magic.
He wondered who on earth was the idiot that had submitted a document like this and looked at the signature. The signature did not belong to a member of the Court Mage Division, it belonged to the Director of the Medicinal Herb Research Institute.
When he examined the dubious looking document carefully, he found a memo had been attached, separate from the receipt. It said:
『Should I demand you pay the price for the magic bestowal from last time? Johan』
It goes without saying that Intelligent Glasses-sama sighed deeply at the meaning that was implied.