Mandarin Orange, Kotatsu, And A Found Cat - Chapter 30 The Cat's Tongue
When I woke up, I found Mashiro standing in the kitchen as usual.
“Good morning, Mashiro.”
“Yes, good morning.”
Today, besides the smell of toast cooking, there was also the smell of delicious food in the air.
And Mashiro was immediately using the apron I gave her yesterday.
That alone made her feel like a housewife, and I couldn’t help but admire her in my sleepy, foggy state of mind.
As she cooked in the kitchen, her fluffy and slender tail swayed at a good pace.
She looked so cute, but every time she did, the hem of her shirt would flip up, revealing her absolute domain.
This made it difficult to look directly at the apron she was wearing.
Mashiro usually wore the clothes I bought her the other day during the day, but in the morning or after bathing, she still wore only a shirt.
She probably wore it as if it were her pajamas, and I guess it was easier for her.
But for me, the situation of a girl of her age wearing only a shirt and no protection was naturally unsettling.
On top of that, the apron made her look even more sensual.
“The apron looks good on you.”
The more I try not to think about it, the more I shake off the insolent thoughts that come to me, and tell her so as if to cover them up.
“Thank you…Satou also looks good when sleeping too.”
Mashiro looked at my head and smiled, teasing me.
I’ve always had a bit of a frizzy hair constitution, so it can’t be helped, but right now I’m a little bitter about that constitution as I head to the sink.
I took a bite of toast, chewed a little, and drank some cocoa. The morning was no different from any other.
Mashiro, who was sitting across from me, was also carefully drinking her cocoa, carefully cooling it down as usual.
“…? Do I have something on my face?”
“Yeah, no. I knew Mashiro had a cat tongue.”
“What do you mean, I knew it.”
“No, because you’re a cat.”
I don’t know the details, but since it’s called a cat tongue, it probably means something like cats don’t eat hot food very well.
That’s what she was, a cat, and the way she was huffing and puffing, desperately trying to cool something hot, was honestly interpretive agreement.
“I don’t think it’s because I’m a cat, but…you’re okay with spicy things, aren’t you, Satou-san?”
“Well, it’s normal. I’m a little weak, but I think I might be okay with spicy food.”
“Then I guess we’ll have a very hot curry for dinner tonight.”
Eh, no, that’s not really what I want. …Are you okay with that?”
“Don’t worry, I’ll eat something else.”
Since Mashiro was in charge of all my meals, I couldn’t go against her, but the curry might be too hot for her.
In fact, I’m surprised that Mashiro would say something like this, because it’s more unusual for her to say something like this.
“Mashiro, are you mad at me?”
“…Because there is a person in front of me who is laughing at my cat tongue.”
After all, Mashiro-sama seems to be angry.
It’s not as if she’s angry like a wild cat, but her cheeks are puffy and she won’t make eye contact with me.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to make fun of you. I just thought it was cute.”
“You’re cute…I knew you were teasing me.”
“No, I honestly thought it was really cute.”
“I’ve had enough!”
I really didn’t mean to tease Mashiro at all, but her nose twitched.
I wondered if she had a complex about her cat tongue. If that’s the case, I may not have been paying enough attention.
“Satou-san has that tendency, doesn’t he?”
“I-I’m sorry. I know you didn’t want me to tease you about your complex.”
“No, that’s not it. It’s just that you say things like that without hesitation…”
Perhaps she was too angry, but her cheeks seemed to be turning a little red.
I then told Mashiro that she didn’t have to force herself to eat the same meal as me, but she didn’t listen.
Mashiro was basically a smart girl who understands my intentions, but she has a certain pride that she can’t give up.
She doesn’t take gifts from me very well, but if she wants to do something for me, she will do everything for me.
I believe that the ideal man should be able to take care of himself and also protect his family and home.
After I picked up Mashiro, this feeling became especially strong, and I was willing to do whatever it took to take care of her, not to mention my own work.
However, when I opened my eyes, I found that my ideal had been blown away by her.
(I’m really going to be a bad person…)
I looked at the toast and cocoa, which I had not prepared myself, and thought about it again.
To be honest, I’ve been completely taken in by Mashiro’s pace lately.
It’s even worse because it’s all of her own volition to spoil me.
“Please be prepared for tonight’s dinner.”
“I’d prefer medium spicy if possible…”
“Don’t worry. I’ve mastered authentic curry.”
“That’s the worst kind…”
Even if it wasn’t intentional, the fact is that I’ve offended Mashiro, and she’s right, I might want to be prepared for dinner.
According to what she told me yesterday, today’s bento has a very sweet flavor, so the gap between that and today’s bento was going to cause a lot of damage.
“Here’s today’s lunch.”
After I ate my breakfast, I got my bento and was seen off by her as usual.
After all that had happened earlier, Mashiro still spoke warmly to me.
Perhaps it’s not just the food and housework that makes me feel like a bad person, but also her warmth.
Even if this is just Mashiro’s way of returning the favor, I am saved by her presence.
It’s been that way from the beginning. When I came home, someone was there, and we ate dinner together.
That was the only thing that filled the loneliness that was somewhere in my heart.
“I’m off then.”
“Yes. Good luck with your work.”
I bit down on her warmth towards me and headed for work.
And, quite simply, that day I was able to tackle my work with even more motivation than usual.
…By the way, the cute bento box with octopus sausage and meatballs, despite its appearance, had a standout flavor that I really liked.
The curry for dinner, which I was prepared to eat, was of course spicy, but the flavor was more than enough to color my mouth, and I was able to enjoy it all the way through.
Mashiro looked on with a cute, smug expression of pride as I gobbled up the curry.