I (30), Who Works for a Black Company and Died While Regretting My Gloomy Life, Started Over From High School! - chapter 38
- I (30), Who Works for a Black Company and Died While Regretting My Gloomy Life, Started Over From High School!
- chapter 38 - How can I not be excited about my beloved girl's cooking?
How can I not be excited about my beloved girl’s cooking?
My name is Fuyuizumi Mei.
I’m twenty-three years old and a maid for the Shijouin household.
The Shijouin’s are a famous clan with a long history, and both the main family, where the head of the family resides, as well as the general family where President Tokimune, the next head of the family, lives, are very famous.
The fact that my parents had worked for the Shijouin family for a long time was a deciding factor, and I was hired as soon as I graduated from university.
The people in this household are not the typical bad-natured people that celebrities tend to be, and the president, Tokimune, who runs a large company, his wife, who is a daughter of a prominent family, and their only daughter, Lady Haruka, are all good people.
So even though I’m only an employee of a housekeeping service company run by the Shijouin family, I have a strong sense of duty for this family, even though I’m somewhat of an old-fashioned person.
(But then again, everyone in this family is a little unusual…)
President Tokimune especially is an extremely doting parent, one day her daughter told him, ” Wow, Dad, you’re amazing!” and I witnessed him rolling around on the floor inside of his room with a huge grin on his face. (Of course, I pretended that I hadn’t seen anything.)
Haruka-sama, the young miss, has the beauty and style that can be described as a man-killer, but inside she is an airhead and innocent by nature. She is indifferent to her own attractiveness and has a tendency to unknowingly break the hearts of boys.
And as for Madam–
“Kyaaaaaaah..! Did you hear that? ‘I definitely want to eat something made by Shijouin-san!’ He said! That’s impressive…! I can’t believe that Haruka is embarrassed!”
She was excitedly peeking through the doorway of the living room entrance, watching the young lady and her guest, a boy named Niihama-kun.
It’s not something that a prominent person from a well-respected family would do.
“Madam… No matter how much you like it, peeping is not a very good hobby…”
“I didn’t actually mean to peep! But if you take a look at it… for a moment, you’ll see that the ideal youth is happening…”
The head family of the Shijouin clan, where the madam grew up, was very strict, unlike her current family.
As a result, the madam was restricted in her love life and became addicted to shoujo manga introduced by her maid, who was also her close friend.
For the madam, who has come to regard the youth of teenage boys and girls as exceptionally precious because of this influence, the fact that the young lady, who had never shown any signs of liking anyone, brought a boy over to her house… must have been a situation that made her excited.
“I’m not trying to ruin her youth, okay? But that… Haruka, that childish girl, for better or worse, invited a boy over and wanted to cook a meal for him… You can’t help but be curious about the boy in question… aren’t you interested in what kind of person he is Fuyuizumu-san?”
“That’s… of course I’m interested. He’s a boy brought here by young miss Haruka after all.”
I’m feigning coolness, but I was incredibly curious about today’s “invitation”.
I think all the servants (with a business order to keep their mouths shut to President Tokimune) who were secretly told by the madam that young miss Haruka invited a boy, are wondering about today’s invitation.
President Tokimune dotes on her, and the young lady has such a lovely appearance and a pure heart. One might think she came from the world of fairy tales… for better or worse she’s too innocent. I don’t think she’ll fall in love with anyone, and she is already in high school.
When I helped her try on the yukata she was going to wear for the cultural festival, she said, “Do you think I look a little more beautiful…?” I was so surprised to see her expression like a maiden.
This morning, she said, “My friend always arrives 15 minutes before the appointed time, but I can’t arrive later than the guests!” She was very choosy about the clothes she was wearing… She is so cute…
“But let’s wait a little longer before we ask that… boy, Niihama-kun, about anything. This is your daughter’s time to entertain her guests.”
“Yes… you’re young, but you’re sharp… When I was around your age, I was a love-sick person who only thought about my current husband…”
“I’m flattered by your compliment.”
I want to be a love-sick person like madam, but I don’t have a partner! “Please introduce me to a good man!” I swallowed these words and put on my work’s smiling face.
◇ ◇ ◇
I shouted in pure admiration at the beautiful garden of food filling the dining table of the Shijouin family.
Potato salad filled with eggs and onions, Nanban pickled horse mackerel soaked in sweet vinegar, French bread canapés with colorful fillings such as anchovies and cheese, pork wrapped in shiso leaves with plum sauce, roast beef with a rosé-colored cross-section.
In fact, it was so gorgeous that it was no longer a lunch, but a complete banquet.
“Wow… amazing, Shijouin-san! Really amazing! Just from the appearance, it looks really delicious…!”
“Thank you. I didn’t expect you to be so excited, but… I really did my best!”
My vocabulary died and I could only say the word “amazing”. Shijouin-san responded to my praise with embarrassment as she took off her apron.
But this is really amazing.
I never heard of Shijouin-san’s cooking skills, but I didn’t know she could cook this well…
“Well then, please sit down and enjoy the meal…!”
“Oh! I’ll have a bite! …Delicious!”
The food that Shijouin-san prepared was delicious and did not betray its appearance.
The potato salad had a rich flavor, and the marinated horse mackerel had a good amount of sweet vinegar that kept making me come back for more.
The French bread canapés also seemed to have been carefully prepared to be soft and easy to eat, and the anchovies, ham, cheese, and avocado were all delicious.
“This pork wrapped in shiso leaves is also very refreshing to eat thanks to the plum sauce… It’s… really good.”
“I’m glad to hear you say that! The truth is, I make a lot of mistakes when it comes to baking because they often lose their shape, so I followed my cooking teacher’s advice to make stews and other dishes in the oven…”
Shijouin-san laughs shyly.
I see… Speaking of which, I remembered Shijouin-san mentioning that she wasn’t really dextrous with her hands. Wouldn’t it be easier to just choose a dish that was easy to prepare in advance?
“And yet, how can you prepare all of these dishes that require a lot of time and effort?”
The more I tasted the food, the more happiness swelled up inside me.
Since I cook as well, I can tell that most of the dishes here are tedious and complicated to prepare.
All of these… just to accommodate me…
“Thanks. … Honestly, it tastes so good and it makes me so happy that I’m… about to cry.”
In my previous life and in the present, I never had someone other than my mother cook such a heartfelt meal for me.
The fact that someone else went through the trouble of making a meal for you is the best spice that amplifies the… emotions that permeate your heart.
“If you put it that way… it makes me very happy. I’ve put a lot of thought into preparing all of this, hoping that it would make Niihama-kun pleased.”
I’m not sure if it’s from embarrassment or from joy, but Shijouin-san smiles while her cheeks become red.
“But, Niihama-kun didn’t forget that, right?”
“Just as you feel that way after eating the food I prepared for you, I can’t express how happy I was when you helped me through all your study sessions.”
She said, and her smile deepened.
“How touching it was, for you to devote all that effort to help me… I hope I was able to convey that.”
(Ooh, there you go saying all those cute things again…)
“Making you happy is a way of repaying you for making me happy” -Being able to say that, you’re a really nice girl.
“Yeah, I didn’t forget… It was properly conveyed to me.”
I responded with a sincere feeling of gratitude.
Soon, the remaining plate of roast beef was empty.
The sauce was excellent, and the meat was cooked to perfection.
Phew, I ate it all and it was really good…
(Speaking of which, Kanako said, “Are you sure about her food Aniki? If this is a manga, a young lady’s cooking might be a mess” but I’m glad it wasn’t the case.)
I was so impressed with the food and didn’t even notice that the amount of food left on Shijouin-san’s plate was strangely small.
Hmm? I thought she didn’t eat that much…?
At that moment, an electronic sound echoed from the kitchen, letting us know that the timer for something had finished.
“Oh, It seems that the oven has just finished baking, so I’ll bring you the next one.”
Leaving me puzzled, Shijouin-san disappears into the kitchen.
I suddenly hear a voice from nearby, and I let out a small scream.
I hurriedly turned my eyes in the direction of the voice and saw a woman in her early twenties, with a ponytail and wearing an apron.
“My name is Fuyuizumi, and I’m a maid. Niihama-sama, let me take care of these empty plates.”
“Ah, yes… thank you.”
The maid, Fuyuizumi-san, puts the plates on her hands and carries them all at once. It’s the same way that experienced waiters in restaurants sometimes do.
“And as Niihama-sama is well aware… Haruka-sama is a straightforward and serious person, so once she starts to put in effort, she will do a task thoroughly.”
Leaving behind meaningful words, Fuyuizumi-san carries the dishes and leaves.
What is that? What did she mean?
“Thank you for waiting! Here is the next menu!”
Shijouin-san, who had returned after replacing Fuyuizumi-san, was pushing a food trolley.
Didn’t I just finish a pretty gut-wrenching meal?
Despite my bewilderment, Shijouin-san once again spreads out a gorgeous display of food on the table.
There was a hot cheese gratin with potatoes and chicken, ratatouille with many vegetables such as eggplant, onions, and carrots, tandoori chicken with the intriguing aroma of spices, marinated squid and shrimp with beautiful colors, and a stewed hamburger steak that seemed to be well seasoned. –I can’t wait to try it.
The second set of gorgeous meals had arrived.
“I thought the… previous meal would be everything.”
“Yes, at first I thought that amount would be enough too, but then I saw an article on the Internet… saying that high school boys eat much more than girls and they eat five or six bowls of rice per meal! So I made a lot of it to make sure you’ll be satisfied!”
You’re not entirely wrong, but, I think it was talking about, like, a gang of athletic boys in a sports club…!
“Of course, if that was too much, you can leave some, so please eat as much as you want!”
Shijouin-san said simply with a smile, but for me it was a complicated matter.
After all, it was Shijouin-san’s home-cooked meal.
It’s a blessing that I can call a miracle, more precious and valuable than anything else.
The foolish male part of me would not allow me to leave any of it uneaten.
(My stomach is already pretty full and obviously overcapacity… but I have the body of a 16-year-old who has the biggest appetite of his life right now! I’m sure I can eat my way out of this one, and it really looks delicious!)
“Thank you for preparing all of this for me again…! I’m going to dig in right now!”
Despite the fact that I can’t eat anymore, I don’t want to leave even a single dish uneaten, so I charge into the line of dishes with all my might.
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