Shomin no Aji – Chapter 352

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Mariel-chan’s visit.
“Long time no see, Cristea-san!”
“Mariel-san, welcome. It has really been a while.”

Several days after trying of the uniform, I invited Mariel-chan for a tea party.
Although I say a tea party, it was an extremely private tea party only for the two of us.,
… It’s because I have no other friends? That’s exactly right, so what?
… I am not crying, okay?
I am happy just from having Mariel-chan now! I have to deepen my friendship with her!
I am not making up excuses!

I wanted to meet Mariel-chan as soon as I arrived at the Capital, but there were many plans regarding the preparations of the enrollment which I couldn’t decline. That’s why I thought of inviting Mariel-chan immediately after finishing, and Mariel-chan sent me a “I will definitely come!” reply.
At that time, the servant who received Mariel-chan’s reply has conveyed it to me with the same vigor and Miria who heard that warmly interpreted it as “Mariel-sama must have been dying to meet you, Cristea-sama.” but… that’s probably not it.

Inviting Mariel-chan to the parlor from the last time, I conveyed Miria and others to prepare tea and leave the room as I had lots to talk about with Mariel-chan. With this, we can talk freely.

“Mariel-san, you look a bit haggard… no, you seem more slender than before… were you well? I was looking forward to seeing you again.”

“Yes, me too! I was looking forward to the day of mis… no, foo… no, of seeing you, Cristea-san.”

… As I thought, she wasn’t looking forward to seeing me, but the food, right?
When I fixedly stared at her, Mariel-chan started panicking.

“I, I am sorry! The food you gave me was so delicious I unconsciously ate it in no time… after your return to the Capital, I waited while counting down the days on my fingers, so I just…”

Mariel-chan who received my invitation a little after I arrived at the Capital was delighted that she could eat Japanese cuisine again, so after the date of the tea party was confirmed, she was restlessly awaiting the day. I think that it’s fine to be that excited, but…

“In no time, you say… I believe I gave you an amount that you would have to eat lots of every day before you ran out?”
“Well~ you see…”

She told me that she was limiting the amount of the Japanese food she ate, but she sneakily ate it every night. Her family was worried that she thinned down, but seeing that she was cheerful and didn’t look unwell, they felt relieved. That’s because she ate every night, indeed.
However, she reached the bottom of the emergency food before long with no means of restocking… in the meanwhile, she kept thinning and her family began worried about her haggardness.

“You see~ I wanted to eat the Japanese food so much I was assaulted with withdrawal symptoms…”

Haha… laughed Mariel-chan. This is not a laughing matter though.

“… Mariel-san?”
“Y, yes!”
“You ought to have your meals balanced! And eat properly! You were previously a nurse, you can’t neglect your health like that, no!?”
“No, my meals were irregular even while I was working as a nurse, so…”
“That’s not the problem heeere!”
“Hyan!? I, I am sorry!”

You can eat delicious things only if you are healthy, alright? Geez!

“Haah… anyhow, let’s have a tea.”
“L, let’s do that! I thought I might be able to eat tasty stuff here, so I skipped lunch!”

… Excuse me?

“Oyyyyyyy!”
“I’m shoooorryyy!”

Gee, how troublesome… I have to let Mariel-chan eat something first.
Since she hasn’t eaten much, heavy sweets should be out of question. Thinking such, I retrieved pudding from my inventory.

“Wow, pudding! Looks yummy! Thank you for the meal! … Howaa, furufuru… I am meltinggg…”

The moment Mariel-chan tasted the pudding, just like her words said, a melting smile appeared on her face.

“Wauua… it’s so smooth and tasty… we bought a pudding recipe too and had the chefs make it, but ours solidifes for some reason.”
That happens often with homemade puddings. It forms bubbles and loses its taste. There’s a bit of a trick for a smooth pudding…

“Isn’t that because the ratio of egg and milk was out of balance? If you add more milk it won’t harden, you know? Moreover, if the temperature is too high when putting it into the steam oven, it will form bubbles and you won’t be able to strain it.”
“Eh, won’t you be unable to mix it if it doesn’t form bubbles?”
“It becomes tasteless because of the bubbles. While mixing, you have to mix the egg white properly and then after boiling, I think it should become smooth if you strain it through a clean cloth two or three times. It’s fine if there are bubbles on the surface. They will, however, go beyond the surface if the temperature of your steamer or oven is too high… you have find the proper temperature of your home’s oven, and if you use many, then you can only look for the right temperature on each of them.”
“Ugh… I thought it was simple, but making pudding is more difficult than I thought, huh…”
“Nono, it’s not difficult once you get used to it.”
“That’s impossible for me… haah, I thought that we could eat pudding at our home at least, yet it’s so far away…”

… That reminds me, Mariel-chan said she was poor at cooking even in her past life. Hmm, she can only have the Mayor Household’s chefs do their best.

“… Would you like seconds?”
“… Please.”

I took out a second pudding in order to cheer up the teary-eyed Mariel-chan.

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