Alright, I hope I’m still on time for this release, as I also want to say… “Merry Christmas!” together with this chapter’s release ^^
PS: Since this is Christmas, maybe you can sit back and enjoy this chapter with a cup of a tea and a slice of Christmas cake to add to the mood XD
Chapter 26 The Delicious Spring Harvest Festival
When I was walking around the stores, there was the sound of ringing bells. Ah, so it's lunch time already.
The sound feels similar to the sound of the temple's bells ringing. In this world, the bells that are on the top of the clock tower will ring to notify people of the time. The voice isn't that loud, but even from inside the mansion, I can hear the voice as if it is being carried away by the wind. I heard it before and asked, "What sound was it?", that was the time I gained the knowledge of the bells.
The clock tower isn't that tall, it is around the height of a 3-staired building. Even so, that clock tower seems to be enough for the area around here. In this kind of a large town, the buildings seem a little bit apart from one another, and the renowned clockmaker said that he made the clock tower according to the impression he got from this town's landmark, making sure that the clock tower would be sufficient for this area1.
Anyway, I decided to take a break and approached the square where the clock tower is located. The tower is situated in the middle of the square, and there is a bell on the top of the tower. Just directly below the bell, a large clockwork can be seen.
Surrounding the tower, there are wooden tables and benches lined up, it gives off the vibe of a café. I'm aware that this is lunch time, but it's still extremely crowded. When I wondered about it, Minoa-san told me the reason behind the crowd.
"There is a café over here which is run by the sweets shop. The Spring Festival limited cake that they serve is very delicious!!"
So, there is a sweets shop over here. …which means, everyone might unexpectedly have some money to spare from their living expenses.
But still, the limited cake, eh? Even the usually unexpressive Minoa-san talked about it while grasping her fist and put on a strong emphasis on it, so it must be really tasty, I think. Both Alica-san and Kanna-san also nodded their head in agreement simultaneously.
"Even I have eaten that cake last year. I highly recommend it for you, Nee-sama."
Just when I thought it was just the girls recommending it to me, Saryuu suddenly added. He even gave his stamp of approval. Now now, I will be craving for it if you put it that way. I wonder if the customers around us all are aiming for that limited edition cake?
In some way or another, we finally found a table to sit on. After a while, the waiter came to pick up the order.
"Welcome. Feel free to state your order."
No way. My mind is blown up now.
Since he is being a waiter, his usual plain-looking butler style is no longer there. His white shirt is more tucked than the usual one, it has more folds, and there's a dark green colored ribbon tie. Above the black straight pants, there's a belt with the same color as his ribbon tie, or rather, it looks like an obi—anyhow, the cloth is rolled2.
Now that I look at him again, Yuzuruha-san is actually a cool and refined Oji-san. If he were to welcome the customers with that kind of appearance on a daily basis, I wonder if the store will be prosperous.
When I'm still thoughtlessly fascinated, Saryuu called out to me.
"Ane-sama, which tea would you like to have?"
"Which one, well…"
I checked the menu in a hurry. The menu is served in the form of a white wooden board. The name and the price of the cuisines is written with paint. I don't know whether it is normally like this or if it's because of the event, but there isn't much variety.
Also, there is a picture of tea besides the writings, I wonder if this is the sample illustration? Since I cannot read anything besides the writing of "tea" and "cake", I feel saved by the illustration.
"Err… what about this flowery type?"
"Alright, then Ane-sama will have the Flower Banquet Tea. I will also have the same order, please."
As Saryuu made the order, I passed the menu to Alica-san, who's sitting besides me. Saryuu sits across from me, and Kanna-san sits next to him. I'm sitting between Alica-san and Minoa-san, with Minoa-san sitting across from Kanna-san.
Ah, Minoa-san and Kanna-san received the menu from Saryuu. So, there's no need to show it to them anymore.
"I'm going to have the Southern Tea. Minoa, Kanna, what will you order?"
"I will order the Flower Banquet Tea."
"Ah, I'll also order the Southern Tea-"
"Then, it will be 3 Flower Banquet Tea and 2 Southern Tea. To accompany it, what about ordering the Viola & Cheria cake?"
As soon as the name of the cakes got mentioned, Minoa-san immediately raised her hand. I see, so that is the cake that she wanted to eat? When I shifted my attention to Saryuu, he is bowing his head and smiling in agreement. Hmm, then it should be good.
"Well then, we'd like to order Viola & Cheria cake for each of us."
"Understood. Please wait for a while."
After ordering the cakes, Yuzuruha-san bowed his head deeply and then quickly walked away. Ah, on the opposite side of the square, there is a big shop just around the corner. I see, so the orders will be brought from over there, eh.
Ah well, the one who watched over Yuzuruha-san wasn't me alone. So, I'll try asking the others.
"…Hey. Is Yuzuruha-san doing this kind of thing every year?"
"No, this is the first time I've ever seen him doing this. Hey, Minoa."
"Eh? Eh, ah, yes, it's also my first time seeing him like this. What about Kanna?"
"Of course, it's my first time seeing this too. He's cool, isn't he?"
"So Yuzuruha could attend to the customers like that…"
"Ah-, is this also the first time for you, Saryuu…"
Eeeh, in other words, because I said that I wanted to go and see the festival, these kinds of things happened… Could it be? Or how should I put it… Is it alright to mobilize the maids and the servants for that reason?
"…Is it alright with everything in the mansion? I mean, with Yuzuruha-san gone…"
"There should be a minimum number of people remaining in the mansion. For the time being, I also haven't seen Kuon-sensei around."
"Most likely Kaya-san also stays in the mansion. So, it should be alright."
Hearing Alica-san and Minoa-san's answers, I thought that it would be somehow alright. Also, I have a hunch that the chef is also gone from the mansion.
"…Ah-. But still, looks like it's my fault. Sorry."
"It's not Ane-sama's fault. It's just Tou-sama and Kaa-sama being too overprotective."
"That's right. Seiren-sama has not done anything bad-"
Haha. Saryuu, Kanna-san, thank you.
After having the conversation, the cakes and the tea arrived. While trying to put up a nonchalant expression, I paid the bill by giving the pocket money I received to Yuzuruha-san. Each person costed around 850 ieno, and as for Saryuu and Kanna-san's share… "I have my own allowance and Kanna's my attendant, so…" as Saryuu took out money from his wallet. Of course, I paid for Alica-san and Minoa-san's share.
In addition, it seems like it's natural over here to pay for our purchases when the items are delivered, something like a direct exchange. I assume it's to prevent running away without paying for the orders.
The Flower Banquet Tea that I ordered is the type that has flower petals of different colors floating in the tea. While the Southern Tea that Alica-san and Kanna-san ordered is… eh, it looks like cinnamon tea? Their tea smells like it.
"Alica-san, what kind of tea is that?"
"As the name implies, it is an imported product from the warm region of the South. Normally, the price is quite expensive, so I can't drink it that often. But during this kind of time, they are doing special services and make the price becomes cheaper, so I can drink it."
"Hee… Ah, so the South region is quite warm?"
So the fact that the South region has warmer seasons doesn't change much from the other world, I see. Whoa-, I'm quite grateful for not having to remember the common sense practised here from the very basic.
Well, anyway, let's talk about the cakes. The sponge cake is dyed with pink cream, creating a pink and white pattern. Viola seems to be the name of the flower that makes the yellow and purple colored preserving sugar that's covering the top of the cake. The pink color seems to be made out of Cheria fruit, so I can safely assume that Cheria is the same as Sakura.
The cream is held between the sponge, and it seems they also put purple berries in it. When I look at it, it's just like a normal short cake. But, it looks pretty delicious.
"I've always been waiting for this day to come. Woww…"
"…Minoa-san, you're exaggerating-."
In front of the cakes, Minoa-san's eyes are sparkling. Ah, I wonder if she's fond of sweet things. I wonder if I should just buy some sweets for the souvenir that I will bring when I return home? I wonder if preserved sugar flower is alright?
Before thinking about the souvenir, let's just eat what's in front of my eyes. Itadakimasu (Let's eat)!
"I give my thanks to the God of the Sun and also to the season. Itadakimasu (let's eat)."
…that was, well, the prayer we should say before eating meals in this world. To put it simply, during the time we pray, the hot food will become cooler and the cold food will be warmer, so they will taste perfect; and so that the god won't be disheartened if we don't pray. It is admirable that we have god who's that interested in humans, but well, the reason he created the world must be due to his feeling of solitude from being all alone, right?3
Anyway, it's a cake that I have high expectations of.
"Whoa, it's really delicious!"
The sourness of the bery and the Cheria's sweetness create an exquisite match. The sponge cake feels a little insipid, but it's alright because it's combined with the flavor of the tea. Besides, the Viola preserving sugar is really sweet, it makes the taste really good.
My eating speed doesn't seem to be quite fast, while Alica-san and Minoa-san have already started eating with all of their hearts. Sometimes Minoa-san seems to be entranced by the food, but let's pretend that I don't notice it. Yup.
"Ane-sama. I'm going to put this into the tea and drink it."
Saryuu picks up a little Viola and "plop!" he drops it into the tea. Afterwards, it increases the color of the flowers in the tea, making it look more beautiful. That's why, I'll try to imitate him.
"Hm. Ah, it smells good and the sweetness spreads in my mouth!"
"Isn't it tasty?"
"Hmph—Saryuu-sama, that drinking method was originally mine, I taught you that—"
Next to Saryuu who looks happy, Kanna-san is pouting her cheeks. Hey, little brother of mine, I understand that you want to show off, but what should I do as your big sister, then?
After eating the cakes, we come back to the Cheria Avenue while snacking on the fried potatoes. In any case, it seems that there are some events afterwards, so the place's crowded with a lot of people. Both of my hands are being held by Alica-san and Saryuu, and so we walk around while forming a group.
"Just right after lunch time, there will be a parade where the flower car will move around the town. If you bring back the scattered flowers and make it into Hoshihana (干し花), it is said that you'll be guaranteed to stay healthy for a year."
Alica-san really knows a lot, eh. I'm a bit impressed.
Hoshihana is the term used to call dried flowers. In whichever world is it, that kind of thing still exists, eh.
Ah well but now… when I turn to my left and my right, there are so many people around. Alica-san and Saryuu whose hands I'm supposed to be holding right now, and Kanna-san who's supposed to be next to them, also the tall Minoa-san… I suddenly can't catch a glimpse of them.
So, I wonder if it is by a coincidence that I can see that person passing by my eyes just now.
The one passing by me just now is unmistakably, the one who has raised me for the past 18 years, the orphanage director.
1 Not really sure about the details, but it's the most I can make out of this sentence : 何でもちょっと離れたところの大きな街にこういうのが得意な時計職人さんがいて、目印みたいな感じで作ったんだとさ。
2 Again, that's my rough translation of this sentence: 黒のストレートパンツの上にはリボンタイと同じ色のベルトだか帯だか、ともかく布巻いててさ。
3 The most I can make out of these two sentences: 簡単なのは、祈ってる間に温かいものが冷めたり冷たいものが温まったりして美味しくなくなったら神様もしょげるだろ、という理由から。えらく人間味のある神様だけど、まあひとりぼっちが寂しくて世界作っちゃったんだもんなあ。If you would like to support the translations, you can check the ways to do so in the right upper sidebar of this site! ᶘ ᵒᴥᵒᶅ
Allow me to say this : HMMM, that’s quite the cliffhanger. I wonder what exactly is happening O_O Is Seiren drunk from the tea and the cakes???