I tried making oyakodon today. But we didn’t have chickne. So ireplaced that with sausages 😐 and then we didn’t have all the seasonings… so i could only use soy sauce and sugar. And then I left it on for a little too long so the egg was completely cooked. Still tasted good though
Changes are abound
Silver-haired Maiden, A certain day’s scenery
(Author’s note: She’s grown up a bit)
Waking up, the first thing I did was tie up my hair.
The hair that I had grown out, was something that I was slightly proud of and thus never failed to groom every day. Despite that, there was a need to tie it tightly so that it doesn’t get in the way of work.
Although I think that it was fine since I could hear his well-regulated sleeping breathes, I still went behind the partitioning screen, and quickly finished changing.
Going down the stairs so that not too much noise was made, was already something I had done many times.
After washing my face at the back of the shop, I do the laundry. It didn’t take up too much time since I had been taking care of it before it stocked up. As I straightened out the clothes, a satisfying, pan, sounded. It made me a bit happy, hearing it sound out nicely.
Going back into the kitchen, Kenneth was just taking out the bucket of vegetables from the food storehouse.
“Ahh, good morning.”
Saying good morning to each other, we each sit in front of our own bucket. Since it was the 『usual』 job, we didn’t need to say anything else more. Although the speed at which I did my share still couldn’t catch up to 『Master』, I work through it, neatly and at a decent pace.
Next to Kenneth who was doing the preparations for the large amounts of food the shop goes through, I start to make everyone’s breakfast. Although I thought that the figure of Kenneth cracking eggs open with one hand was cool, I couldn’t really do it as I had imagined. Perhaps it had something to do with the size of one’s hands.
I season it a little, and with the butter, it starts to cook, fluffing up.
It had taken me some time before I could make an omelette the way I had imagined it without fail.
Just as I had added toasted bread to the soup full of ingredients, I smile, hearing the footsteps coming down towards me.
“Good morning, Latina.”
“Good morning, Dale!”
After seeing out Dale, who was going out to wash his face, I go up to the second floor to call Rita. Even though she was still busy with taking care of the three-year-old Theodore, I imagine that Rita, with another child inside her stomach, must be having a tough time.
“Good morning, Rita, Theo. It’s time for breakfast.”
“Good morning Latina.”
Rita smiles as she pulled out the unhappy Theo from under the blankets. This was something that occurred on the daily, so it didn’t surprise me anymore.
I turn around, heading back to the first floor. There was no time to relax.
And, if I was to lose this period of time then, I wouldn’t get to spend any time with Dale, who would be going to 『work』.
Sitting in my long determined『usual spot』, next to Dale, who had been waiting for me, we call out “Itadakimasu(Let’s eat!)” at the same time.
“Are you going to take care of magic beasts in the 『forest』 again today?”
“Yeah. I won’t be going too far in though, so I should be able to get home quite early.”
It’s not like they were having money troubles, and they actually had some leeway with money. However, lately Dale has been frequently taking jobs to go to the 『forest』, so that his skills and senses won’t be dulled. Which was what he had told me.
I knew that Dale was strong. However, I don’t think I can help but be worried.
I swallow down those feelings and smiled.
“Don’t go crazy, take care of yourself.”
“I’ll be fine.”
Receiving his smile, I happily bite in the toast with a crunch.
Because it’s 『morning』, I put plenty of jam onto my bread. We’ll be extremely busy after this after all. If I don’t have something to liven me up, I’ll collapse.
By the time Rita and Theo came down, breakfast was over as well. I took Dale’s plates and put them into the wash.
“Kenneth, what do we start with?”
“I’ve finished stocking up the soup. I’m cooking the potatoes right now.”
After a brief question about the progress, I switch with Kenneth. Since eating while taking care of the young Theo was truly troublesome, Rita and Kenneth both take turns to eat as they took care of Theo. Which is exactly why, I gave them time to eat together as a family around the table. That was also a part of the 『job』.
Checking how the pot was going, I grasped how far along they are and started to do some work that could be finished within that time. Something like adding the enormous amounts of spring onions needed, to the scrambled eggs. As I wipe away the tears that well up sometimes, I rhythmically swing the knife. The time to take out the potatoes came when there was a mountain of spring onions in the bowl.
“<Oh Black Darkness, Upon the origins of My name, Please cleave away the bindings of the stars, 《Gravity Reduction》>”
Chanting a simple spell as if I was singing, I lift up the large pot and empty the contents into a drainer. So much steam raised up that my field of vision became completely white for a second.
After getting rid of the hot water, the potatoes were moved into a bowl and I started to mash them while they were still hot. I add the butter and then mash it even more to mix it in. It’s something that I do every day, but it was hard work. Kenneth always tells me that he’ll do it, but thinking that I wasn’t going to do it just because it was hard, felt wrong somehow.
After pouring in the milk, and it became all soft, I add the seasoning. After testing the taste, I brought a small plate over to where Kenneth, who had finished his breakfast, was sitting.
Tasting it, Kenneth nods at me. It was a pass. This was also something like a daily ceremony, but it really was nerve wracking.
Theo reached out towards the small plate Kenneth was holding. It was as if Theo could see that today’s potatoes were special, and wanted it. Which is why I had put a little more than necessary for a 『taste test』.
The sight of Theo, copying his father, eating the potatoes with a serious looking face made me pull a relaxed expression.
Theo, who I had seen every day ever since he was a baby, was like a younger brother to me. He looked cute even when he would say no.
(I wonder if Dale also had these sort of feelings when he was raising me)
I was aware that he had been filled with love of me.
What I had right now, was people important to me, and a place important to me. And most importantly, the fact that I had my favourite person by my side.
As the customers gradually came into the store, it was me who was in charge of the floor. I wasn’t able to carry all the dishes at one time like Kenneth. Because of that, I would go to and fro, round and round the tables.
“Thank you for waiting.”
“Oh! You’re lively today as well, girly.”
“You too right? Gil-san~”
I would laugh like that with the regulars, and then turn my smile towards a neighbouring table.
“Is it alright if I take these away for you?”
“Ahh, go for it.”
As I was placing the emptied plates onto the tray, Rita calls out.
“Sorry, Latina! Can you bring the medicine box over here?”
Pitter patter, went the sound of my footsteps going up the stairs.
Every morning was spent in this sort of fashion. It was busy, but that’s exactly why it’s a day worth living.
After the morning peak has passed, I take a peek at the store’s backyard.
Calling out to him, Theodore, who had been playing, looked over here. Being called 『Sis (-nee)』 by him, made me feel so happy, I was embarrassed.
“Thank you Wind.”
The one looking after Theo was, my precious 『Friend』. His real name is different, but since it’s a sound that 『people』 can’t pronounce, he has a nickname.
Answering with a bark, he starts to energetically wave his black tail.
『He』 suddenly came 『here to the Ocelot』 a year ago, and has already fully adapted to this place. He was also a great play pal for Theo.
He was a reliable 『Onii-san (Brother)』, one we could feel safe taking care of Theo.
The very first time Wind came here, both Dale and Kenneth were surprised, but the ones who said that it was okay for him to live with us was also those two.
I pick up Theo into my arms, read him a picture book, and play with him. I think that, I might have gotten slightly used to 『being a bigger sister』 as well.
“Latina, can you go shopping for me?”
I’ve also been entrusted with shopping for a few ingredients and such. Although, since the price of fresh products needs a bit of negotiation, I only buy those when Kenneth is with me.
I was allowed to go by myself for the few products that don’t have too much of a differing price change. It’s still something similar to carrying out 『errands』, but being relied on, makes me really happy.
As Kenneth goes to take up Theo into his arms, Wind arrived by my side.
“Do you want to come with me today as well?”
After I pat his soft, fluffy fur coat, I took off my apron and put on a coat.
“See you, Kenneth. I’m off now!”
“Oh. Be careful.”
After shouting loudly, I begin to head towards the East District. It seems like today’s weather is going to be good.
(Author’s note: I think the puberty arc will be more focused on the “daughters”
Pov. Thanks for reading.)