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“Now then, time to eat, finally.”
“Erw, what are you going to eat today?”
“I will decide on the spot, I think.”
“Well, that makes sense, in a way.”
I have been continuing as a temporary teacher of the adventurer prep school’s magician class at a rate of three days per week.
Once the lecture in the morning comes to an end, the students work independently in the afternoon.
They are free to train magic by themselves or go out hunting as a part-time job after having had their lunch.
We always return to the mansion after eating lunch at the capital to work on our afternoon schedule.
There’s a lot of development work in the territory to be done since Elise and the others have become pregnant, but deliberately eating lunch outside before taking care of that is me wanting to enjoy eating out.
Once I get back to the mansion in the Baumeister Earldom, the cooks will immediately serve lunch. Those dishes are delicious as they always pay close attention to the ingredients and cooking methods.
However, it’s human nature to occasionally get an urge to eat out at times when you are away from home.
So far I also hit upon a big number of restaurants that weren’t overly delicious, but that also added to the surprise and doubled the happiness once I discovered little-known good restaurants.
“Hubby, let’s go with a restaurant that’s slightly away from the prep school.” (Katia)
“Katia, do you know the area around there?” (Wendelin)
“Not at all. It’s just that it’s fun to go to places you’ve got absolutely no clue about.” (Katia)
“Oh, that’s a surprise. I didn’t take you for such a gambler.”
“Well, adventurers have unexpectedly few hobbies, so you take what you can get.”
Erw, Katia, and I explore an area that’s a bit further away from the prep school, looking for a restaurant that seems good for having a meal.
“It doesn’t look as though there’s a good one out here.” (Erwin)
“You don’t know that, Erw.” (Wendelin)
The restaurants catering to the students close to the prep school can be divided into two categories: old restaurants with a good reputation, and relatively new restaurants with the owners changing frequently.
The restaurant with the entrails stew, which Doushi had recommended, is a well-known, old restaurant that’s always packed with customers.
Some of the new restaurants have also been doing their best, and on the other hand, there are also some that are completely no good.
The latter ones probably believe that they will make a profit as long as they set up their restaurant in the vicinity of the prep school with its huge traffic of people.
However, such restaurants have many people testing them out at first, but soon become deserted.
The management of a restaurant is a big challenge in any world.
Us going a bit further away from the prep school this time is for the sake of finding a new secret gem since we have already visited the restaurants around the prep school to some extent.
“Hubby, what about that restaurant?”
Katia finds a cozy-looking restaurant in a back alley that you enter from the main street of this area.
The restaurant doesn’t have the impression of being dirty as it seems to be cleaned frequently, but either way, it’s a place that doesn’t stand out.
“Restaurants like this might be unexpectedly delicious with their hidden-gem-like flair.”
“On the other hand, no customers are heading for that hidden gem, right?”
Erw appears to be doubtful about not a single customer entering that restaurant.
He’s right, customers usually make their way to hidden-gem-like restaurants with good food.
Otherwise, such stores would go bankrupt before being labeled as secret gems.
“Isn’t it fine to give it a chance?” (Katia)
“It’s as Katia says. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” (Wendelin)
“Hubby, I don’t think you have to go that far, but if it’s a dud, we just gotta go to another place.”
“You’re right, we just need to go to another place then.”
It’s wrong to not search for little-known, good places by walking around yourself.
Doushi seems to still do that himself as well at times. He’s sensitive to delicious restaurants in the capital. Support this translation by reading it at Infinite Novel Translations.
『Despite being a noble, Doushi is only well-informed about commoner restaurants. This is also proof that he doesn’t care what restaurant it is as long as it serves tasty food. In a certain way I admire him for that.』
Previously Burkhart-san told us about Doushi’s idolization of good food catered towards commoners.
Doushi seems to have the hobby of searching for what’s commonly called cheap, delicious food.
That Doushi looking for restaurants while moving around incognito…I think it’s impossible for a person, who stands out so much, to go around secretly.
Well, I think no one will deliberately get involved with him, even if they spot him.
Even if he enters back alleys with a somewhat bad public order, I doubt that there’s anyone who would try to rob or extort Doushi.
After all, no one wants to die.
“I’m hungry, so let’s go inside.”
Once we enter the restaurant upon Erw’s urging, we’re immediately greeted by a person who seems to be the owner.
It’s a young man with amber, close to blond, hair, who seems to be in the first half of his twenties.
“What’s your order?”
“Let’s see. Three portions of the specialty of this house.”
“Very well. Three portions of the house’s specialty, it is.”
Whenever we enter a restaurant for the first time, we will order food like this.
If it’s a good place, they will serve the most popular menu, and a bad place will deliberately bring out the most expensive dish.
It’s a method that works very well to differentiate between restaurants.
“Thank you for waiting.”
The dishes are served after around ten minutes, but it’s a menu consisting of stew with big chunks of boar meat, bread, and salad – nothing overly original, in other words.
“Now then, time to dig in.”
I begin eating at once. It has a normal deliciousness.
The stew is good. The meat has been processed perfectly, and is tender after having been boiled well.
The bread and salad are normal as well.
“It’s delicious, isn’t it?”
“I think that it tastes well enough, too.” (Katia)
“What’s wrong, hubby?” (Katia)
Certainly it’s okay if you eat it.
It’s even delicious, but…I have started to feel that something’s out of place about this restaurant.
“Customers, does the food suit your taste?”
“I think it’s delicious.”
As I’m brooding, the owner comes over to ask about our impressions. Erw and Katia honestly tell him that they like the food.
Since it’s truly delicious, I don’t think that they are wrong to feel about it like that.
“That’s good to hear…umm, dear customer?”
The young owner is happy after the good reviews by Erw and Katia, but he seems to immediately feel bothered by my behavior.
He calls out to me.
“Wend, is there something that bothers you?”
The sense of discomfort I feel is about the reason why this restaurant has no customers despite serving delicious food.
Right now it’s not outside of hours.
By all rights, if it’s not crowded at lunch time, it’s weird.
“Hmm, I have almost grasped what’s bothering me.” (Wendelin)
“What might that be, dear customer?”
The owner seems to be very interested in what I want to say.
He leans his body forward in my direction.
“(Previously, in a restaurant like this…right! That’s it! It’s that restaurant!)”
In my previous life, when I was working as a humble salaryman, I visited a certain restaurant with a trade partner.
The owner over there was a man who had been the head chef of a famous, high-class hotel, and was now working independently, trying to hold the place by himself.
Since he was a celebrity in that business field, I was asked by the trader of another client to sell him expensive, high-quality ingredients.
He also allowed me to sample the food, and I must say, his cooking was truly superb.
Everyone believed that the restaurant would become a hit, but in the end it was closed down in no more than a year.
If you were to ask why…
“I think your cooking skill and the food’s taste is good. But, I wonder if I’d become a frequent customer.”
The cooking is good, but it’s a common menu. It’s not like it has any other peculiarity beside being simply delicious.
“Doushi’s entrails stew restaurant sold stew that boiled entrails over a long period of time.”
Since it uses entrails as meat, its quality is probably below the dishes of this restaurant.
And yet, the stew has a peculiar taste due to the restaurant carefully processing the entrails and boiling them for a long time.
They save on the ingredient costs, but instead use more effort and time in preparing it, allowing them to offer something cheap while also being delicious.
That’s why it’s very popular among the prep school’s students. I hear that the school staff and graduates come to eat there while bringing their friends and families along in the evening.
“It’s a taste that makes them want to experience it again even after graduating from the school. That’s why the restaurant is always full with regular customers. But, this restaurant…”
Here it will end with 『It tasted well』 after eating the food once.
“The customers will forget about this restaurant within a day after having been here, right?”
“Customer, in other words, you’re saying…”
“I think your cooking style is good, but your dishes are too orthodox, lacking any impact. Since you can’t create any frequent customers with it, the number of customers doesn’t increase. Also, since this restaurant isn’t located in a good location, it’s difficult to increase the customers as there’s no reason to expressly visit this place.”
The owner, who listened to my argumentation, hung his head on the spot.
He’s probably aware of it himself, too.
“Hubby, aren’t you kind of harsh on him?” (Katia)
“That might be true, but…”
Giving an evasive answer along the lines of 『It’s strange for no customers to come here, despite the food being so delicious』 would be the easy way out here.
Probably this owner has asked many customers the same question.
The number of customers not having grown despite that is probably owed to the customers having given him safe answers.
It’s different when it’s family or friends, but it takes courage to give painful advice to the owner of a restaurant you entered by coincidence.
“No, hubby, I do understand that part, but…” (Katia)
“What is it? You’re not acting like yourself, Katia.”
I feel doubtful about Katia’s hesitant attitude, even though she always says what she wants to say without holding back.
At that point──
“Onii-san, I brought ingredients over today as well…eh! Sensei!?”
“Eh? Ah, if I remember correctly, you’re…”
A robe exclusive to magicians, and amber, close to blond, hair…it’s a beautiful girl I feel to have seen somewhere. Ah, I remember.
She’s my student.
Since she has said that she brought ingredients over, she has probably come to sell the meat, which she obtained through hunting after school, to this restaurant.
“…Right! You’re Betty! You’re often together with Agnes and Cindy, aren’t you?”
“Sensei, despite immediately remembering the names of Agnes-chan and Cindy-chan, you forgot mine?” (Betty)
Due to my nature as a former Japanese, I have difficulties remembering western-styled names.
“Though, all’s fine since you were able to recall.”
“Is it your part-time job, Betty?”
I change the topic in order to cover up the awkwardness.
“It’s no job…”
For some reason Betty is evasive.
“(Hey, hubby.)” (Katia)
At this moment, Katia addresses me in a whisper.
“(You see, that girl called Betty, her face resembles that of the owner here, and their hair colors are completely identical as well, aren’t they?)”
In other words, those two are related by blood. Considering their age difference, I think it’s correct to call them older brother and younger sister.
“Huh? That means?”
“(Returning to talk about this restaurant: you having given a painful advice means that it’ll very likely develop into us having to kindly cooperate with them…that’s all the more likely if it’s the relative of your student…I’d say.)”
“…So I get stuck doing this once again?”
It resulted in me being once again forced into doing some fake consultant work for this restaurant which was troubled over not having any customers.
＊ ＊ ＊
“Sensei, we don’t mind even if you don’t do this for us.”
Betty, the younger sister of the shop owner here, made a statement betraying our expectations.
She basically says that it’s fine for the restaurant run by her brother to go bankrupt.
“Still, isn’t that a bit heartless towards your brother?” (Wendelin)
I reprimand Betty who asked her brother, who desperately puts in effort to gather guests for his restaurant, “But am I not right?”
“That’s right! It’s just as Earl Baumeister-sama says!”
The shop owner is angry at Betty.
“I mean, there are actually no guests coming here. Brother, being employed as a cook will be a more secure lifestyle for you. Right now I’m sharing the meat I obtained through hunting with you, but once I graduate from the prep school, you will need to procure it from somewhere else. Since you have no creativity as a cook, I’m telling you that it’s better to give up as soon as possible.”
“That’s a sound argument that’s quite hard to refute.”
Overturning my previous statement, I switch sides to Betty.
It’s because I have realized that she has said all that with the readiness to be hated for the sake of her brother.
“Your sister is correct, I think.”
“She’s a good girl. Whether I’d be able to tell my bro off in such a way is…” (Katia)
“You did tell him. During the matter with the tunnel.”
“Erwin, don’t bring up that story anymore. I have reflected on that whole mess in my own way…” (Katia)
Erw and Katia also join Betty’s cause. With this the prevailing opinion is that it would be better to close down the restaurant.
The 『Wendelin’s Second Consultation Job』 has come to an end here.
By becoming a cook hired by an independent restaurant, it will secure him a stable life without any need to live in debts.
It’s a slightly boring conclusion, but it can’t be helped.
“With this out of the way, go and look for a job. Since you’re skilled, I will introduce you to Arterio’s company. If it goes well, you will be able to get promoted and become part of the top management there.”
“Brother, that’s much better. Speaking of Arterio Company, it’s running a big number of eateries, and I hear that it’s very profitable.”
Yep, yep. If I can introduce a very promising manager candidate to him, Arterio-san will be thankful, and I will get something out of it as well.
If the elder brother of my cute student drowned in debt, it would cause troubles for his sister and stand in the way of her future.
Far from killing one bird with two stones, you might as well call it an idea that kills three birds with one stone.
It’s definitely not just for the sake of my own benefit.
“Then, let’s go with that.”
“Please wait! I won’t close this restaurant! Betty! Isn’t this place a valuable legacy of dad!? Shutting it down is nothing I could do!”
“Wend, what’s your take?”
“The legacy of their deceased father, huh…?”
I guess if you consider that part to some extent, it brings the whole matter back to a neutral position.
Most recently, there are places that have been starving for such heart-warming stories.
“Even the memories of our mother, who passed away at the time when Betty was just born, are remaining in this restaurant! I can’t close up shop so easily!”
“Betty, is that true?”
I try asking Betty about the details…
──In the past, there existed a young, married couple that wanted to open up their own restaurant.
Husband and wife procured a store by laboring away, and in spite of the store’s bad location, they earned enough money to lead a normal life.
However, at some point they reached a turning point in their lives.
After the wife gave birth to her second child, she immediately died from illness.
The husband frantically ran the restaurant while raising the two children by himself.
“That’s a touching story.”
It’s a drama as you will encounter on TV.
“The problems started at this point.”
──Even after having lost his wife, the restaurant’s management went well for the husband.
Soon he declared that the elder child would succeed the restaurant once grown into an adult.
Since he had helped his father from an early age, this child had enough confidence.
That child was Betty’s brother.
“Dad told me to come back after getting proper training at another restaurant. According to his words, he would spoil me too much when teaching me himself.”
“That was a very correct assessment.”
“Is that so, sensei?”
It’s one of the reasons why successors suddenly run down popular restaurants.
Without putting in any decent effort as they just rest on their laurels while relying on the previous generation’s reputation, the taste becomes worse over time, and gradually guests stop coming in, resulting in the restaurant going bankrupt. That’s a regular pattern.
During my time as a salaryman I have heard those kinds of stories from many directions.
“Even though it’s exceedingly easier than making a new restaurant thrive from scratch, there are some who have to close their restaurant after a short time, right?”
Since stupid rich boys making their noble houses fall into ruin regularly pop up, I can’t really speak about other social classes, though…
“Fearing that, Dad sent brother to another place for training.”
──However, another problem cropped up at this point.
Even their father, who was the restaurant owner, ended up collapsing from sickness.
“I guess that means you hurriedly returned as the new owner?”
“In his sickbed, Dad told brother to not come back yet.”
──He told him to not interrupt his training halfway, and come back after properly bringing his training to a close since the store wasn’t rented but the family’s possession.
Despite being told so by his father who was on the verge of dying, his son willfully resigned from his training place, and started to run the restaurant.
Of course the guests gradually stopped coming. Nowadays they even lack the funds to buy ingredients, and it has developed into the sorry state of him relying on the meat hunted by his younger sister.
“Uwaah…you’re telling me you’re completely dependent on your sister who’s close to ten years younger than you…no way…”
“Don’t you have any pride as an big brother, dude?”
In the past, Erw has gone through rough times thanks to his elder brothers.
Katia’s brother never placed any financial burden on his sister.
That’s why both openly showed their disgust towards Betty’s older brother who was naively dreaming about his dead father’s memories in this restaurant even though he was fully relying on his younger sister.
It’s probably because they believe that something like that can only be said by someone who somehow manages things by himself without depending on others.
“I mean, this is my father’s restaurant!”
“As you said yourself, your father told you to reopen the restaurant after finishing your training, didn’t he? This restaurant is owned by you, so you don’t need to pay any rent. As long as you don’t have any turnover, you won’t have to pay much taxes either. Wouldn’t it have been fine to continue your training while maintaining the store so that you could reopen it at any time?”
Betty’s brother falls silent as he can’t return anything against Erw’s just argument.
He’s probably shocked from having his own rashness pointed out to him by someone who’s younger.
“At this point, you won’t be able to return to that old restaurant, right?”
“Yes, it’s not possible anymore…”
Betty’s brother, who’s thoroughly being confronted with his own failures, has his heart shattered and looks like a completely withered leaf.
Even though it’s only now, he has finally realized the extent of his own ineptitude.
“Sensei, I don’t mind if you abandon him. It won’t do brother any good to be pampered anyway.”
Having said that, it looks like Betty can’t help but to be worried about her brother.
I can’t see anything else but the wish for me to do something about it on her face.
“I have already started this, so I won’t quit now.”
I will make sure that Betty’s brother will be able make a living by managing this keepsake of his parents properly.
Believing that I might as well give it a try since there’s nothing to lose anyway, I decide to begin with the reformation of this restaurant.
＊ ＊ ＊
“Earl Baumeister-sama, you say you came up with a new business?”
“New, huh? I’d say it’s a combination of existing businesses.”
On the next day we’re in the middle of remodeling Betty’s brother’s restaurant.
Of course I have asked Arterio-san, and as expected, he seemed to be very curious what kind of restaurant it would become.
“But, isn’t the location slightly bad?”
“The bad location will be compensated by another component. We will sell alcohol.”
“A tavern? If it’s a tavern, I think the management will be difficult.”
Yep, the management of a tavern is troublesome.
It’s because they have a wide range of dishes, and that would take quite a bit of time and effort.
If no guests show up, the loss of ingredients will grow, putting even more pressure on the management.
It also has the contrivance that the ones managed by a company are more profitable than those run by individuals.
Bigger companies can lower the costs by stocking up in bigger batches all at once, and have the advantage of being able to flexibly shuffle lacking resources and manpower around between the branch stores.
“Is that why you have increased the places at the counter? There’s no chairs either, huh?”
“We’re going for a setup where guests drink while standing.”
What I have come up with is a restaurant where people dine and drink while standing.
Alcohol with a high profit ratio and side dishes going well with the drinks will be served. It’s a store targeted at people who want to grab a drink on their way back home after work.
“There will be one to three side dishes, and up to three cups of alcohol from a wide range of different sorts. The drinking while standing is for the sake of increasing the turnover rate. We will leave those guests, who would sit down to drink normally, to taverns.”
This store is scheduled to become a standing-bar like the one in Japan’s Shinbashi1.
“Since the idea here is for the guests to drink a bit and go back home afterwards, I guess it’s okay to not care that much over its location.”
“Actually, it’s better for the location to be slightly bad instead.”
The guests will have a drink for a short time after work before heading home, and come for quick drinks during their days off and after the sun goes down.
Since I’m estimating for those cases to be our targets, it’s rather better for the store to be situated in a place that doesn’t have many people looking at it.
“If the regular customers increase, the bad location won’t be a handicap any longer. Once the regular customers come here to drink with their friends, the number of guests will increase even further.”
The remodeling results in establishing counter seats by narrowing down the cooking area.
As there are no chairs despite there being tables set up, the guests will be able to drink while chatting with several peers.
The lack of chairs aims at increasing the turnover of guests.
“We will also leave the guests, who stick around for a long time, to the taverns.”
“Oh, so you’re narrowing down the quality of the customers. And what’s my part in this?” (Arterio)
“The menu.” (Wendelin)
The food will be served a la carte suiting the alcohol, and I want to increase the types of drinks and side dishes as much as possible.
We will use the seasoning and the menu of the restaurants run by Arterio-san.
“Cold tofu, green soybeans, pickled vegetables, and all kinds of salads. Various fried foods are possible as well, right? Deep-fried food will work as well, no?”
In addition, fried vegetables and meat on skewers, bird in teriyaki, yakitori…since bamboo skewers can actually only be procured through Mizuho, they are expensive…for now we have no other option but to swindle our way through by placing the fried food on tables without using skewers.
I think the menu will grow, as long as we provide various small dishes with salt-taste and dipping sauces.
“Fish might be nice as well.” (Wendelin)
“Earl-sama, fish is unexpectedly expensive.”
“I’ve got a connection, right? I will try to talk it over with them.”
The one I discussed it with was the owner of 『River』 whom I previously taught the method of cooking eel.
“Earl Baumeister-sama, long time no see.”
“It’s the eel king! The eel king is here!”
“Just as you said, that nickname got stuck to me, Earl Baumeister-sama.”
Nowadays the owner of River has set up several branch stores, and is even called Eel King in the capital.
“Eels would be a bit difficult, but if it’s freshwater fish cuisine, I can provide the ingredients. Since I got connections to the river fishers, the prices will be slightly lower as well. Let’s see…the menu will be…”
It might be fine to go with the standard fried and deep-fried fish and river shrimps.
Even sweetened boiled fish and deep-fried fish marinated in spicy sauce should go very well with alcohol.
There are plenty of other fish dishes that will work as well.2 Given that it will take time to prepare all of it, it will be alright to buy finished dishes to some extent.
“The menu has drastically grown, hasn’t it Earl Baumeister-sama?”
“With this we can reopen once the owner has familiarized himself with cooking the dishes on the menu.”
“And, if it all goes well, it will allow him to open another store with the same concept at another place in the capital.”
“That’s how it is. I will have him open a branch in Baulburg, too.”
“This will yield a hefty profit again, won’t it?”
Arterio-san and I laugh at each other while clapping our shoulders.
“For some reason I feel like my opinions and feelings on this are being ignored here…”
“Betty’s brother, I don’t know whether you do it for the memories of your deceased father or whatsoever, but there’s no point in a restaurant that yields no profit. If your dead father heard that you have your sister sponsor the meat, he’d roll over in his grave while lamenting, I think. If you want to run the restaurant in your own way, you got to earn money first. Or, are you going to run a half-baked restaurant for the rest of your life while sponging off your sister after Betty becomes an excellent magician?”
Since Betty’s brother is still complaining, I argue him down with logic.
Because he might become a shackle for his sister, who has a promising future ahead of her, I’ve told him that I would cooperate.
“That might have a charm of its own as well though, if you’re going for the easy way out.”
“Uuuh…even I have pride and backbone as her big brother. I mean, my skills aren’t bad! I will make a restaurant again after making this place succeed!”
“There’s a method to serve the dishes you’ve made up until now, though.”
Since the bar is going to be opened in the late afternoon, it’s okay for him to serve a limited lunch menu.
Given that food preparation for a standing-bar will likely be quite hard, he will need to narrow down the menu to one or two daily specials.
If he uses that method, he might become busy, but it won’t be impossible.
“For example, like this.”
I have him run a trial run of a limited lunch, but this is no more than a reuse of his basic menu.
It’s an improvement of the stew we ate the other day.
“The sauce is almost perfect. I will make you complete a stew including plenty of cheap sinewy and leftover meat without relying on Betty’s hunting. You will serve it on a big plate together with rice, and garnish it with pickled vegetables.”
He will need to carefully dish out everything on one plate, and not several.
It’s no good with bread, but as long as he uses rice, it won’t be a problem since the dish will become like beef stroganoff rice or hashed meat with rice.
The vegetables are added for a good nutritional balance, and if you use pickled ones, it won’t be easy to incur a loss of ingredients as they can be stored for a long time.
It might also be fine to serve the pickled vegetables as a side dish for the alcohol or as a standalone-item.
“With this the price becomes seven cents. You will serve water for free, and if people want fruit juice added to their water, add another cent to the total.”
Because fruit juice water can also be used to dilute alcohol, this will also make it possible to keep the ingredient loss low.
It will also have an effect on lowering the price of the ingredients as he will procure a great amount at a wholesale price.
“Because it’ll be one plate, washing won’t pose any problems either. Refine your creativity as cook while thinking up such menus.”
“Okay! I will show you my best!”
“Sensei, thank you very much.” (Betty)
Having gone this far, the probability of this working out well should be fairly high.
We leave the rest to Arterio-san, and return to our usual lives.
And then, a little while later…
“Thanks to you, sensei, my brother’s store is flourishing. We’re truly and deeply thankful.”
Even though she had said various harsh things, I think that Betty was worried about her brother’s restaurant.
She reports to us that customers have started to flow in now.
“That’s great to hear.” (Wendelin)
I had heard about this through Arterio-san, but Betty’s brother’s shop seems to be a huge hit since its opening day.
Limited to day time, he serves a daily special lunch menu, and afterwards he runs it as standing-bar until night.
Thinking that it’s a great idea, Arterio-san seems to plan experimental bars in other areas of the capital.
“It looks like my brother can pay back his debts early, too.” (Betty)
The store’s remodeling, the development of new menus, and the expenses necessary for the reopening had all turned into debts, but Betty tells me that there’s a good chance for him being able to pay it all back.
After all it’s been me who lent the money to her brother as the one poking my nose into it.
『If my brother can’t pay you back, I will work so long until I do it.』
It’s no significant amount of money, but Betty threatened her brother saying that she would become the guarantor for the debt.
You could call that levelheaded, but in reality she might be a quite scary girl.
I think she might be compelled to being dependable because her brother is somewhat a scatterbrain, though.
“Erwin, hubby, we’re not going to grab lunch there?” (Katia)
“You’re right, let’s give it a try.”
Once I head to his store while taking Erw, Katia and Betty along, the place is packed with many guests.
Since it’s lunchtime, most of the guests are eating the lunch menu.
Though a part of them are elderly men enjoying alcohol with side dishes.
“It’s a full house. He hired a new person?”
There’s a young female employee in the store.
The shop owner, Betty’s brother, is in charge of cooking, and the woman seems to be in charge of taking orders, carrying the alcohol and dishes, and handle the billing.
“Oh my, Betty-chan, hello.”
“Hello, Rosa-san. Today I’ve come together with Earl Baumeister-sama to take a look.”
It appears that this young woman is an acquaintance of Betty.
The two are chatting happily with each other.
“I’m sorry for my brother always causing you trouble.”
“He’s a really hopeless guy. To make his younger sister worry so much.”
Rosa sighs while looking at Betty’s brother who’s busy in the kitchen.
“Betty, is she your friend?”
“Rosa-san is brother’s childhood friend.”
“I guess she came to work here through that connection?”
“Yes, we keep getting indebted to you, Earl Baumeister-sama. I wonder how to thank you for all you have done for us.”
Rosa is a very pretty woman, and carries out the customer service and other jobs flawlessly.
Even going by her greeting towards me, she seems to be a very capable person.
“Rosa-san, since brother is such a lost case, I won’t mind you abandoning him if he blunders next time.”
“It’s fine. This time I will keep him properly on the leash. Earl Baumeister-sama, we will definitely repay the debt as well.”
Even though Rosa-san is supposed to be the one hired here, it looks like she totally has the pants on in their work relationship.
Well, since it’s something that often happens in society, I decide to not pay any attention to it.
In short, the store is thriving, and all will be fine if the debt is paid back.
“I guess we can be relieved with things like this. There are people who get carried away once things turn out well a bit, but as long as Rosa-san is here, she will rein him in.”
“He isn’t very reliable, but he’s no bad man.”
“Brother has been like that even after promising to marry Rosa-san.”
“What was that…?”
It’s here again!
His cooking is fairly delicious, but there’s still a childhood friend who promised to marry a worthless guy who would ask his younger sister to provide the ingredients after being at his wits’ end.
The world is truly unfair.
For such a guy to have a childhood friend who’s also his fiancée…I wonder, does God really exist?
But, even if I meaninglessly shout this injustice out here like I did before, it’s not like my opinion will be approved.
I wonder whether I should punish that scoundrel in another way.
“If you fail, I will send you to the mines!”
I yell loudly, lighting the fire under Betty’s brother ass.
“Hiee───h! I will do my best! I will absolutely pay back the money!”
I pretend to harshly encourage Betty’s brother while actually performing a counterattack against a normalfag.
Right, this isn’t me harassing him.
I’m simply striking down a normalfag as representative of the countless restrained heart voices of the people who couldn’t become normalfags.
Yes, this is justice!
“If you got it, it’s four portions of the daily special.”
I quickly put in an order with Betty’s brother, and move to an open table.
Since there are no chairs, we continue talking around the table with all of us standing.
“Brother regularly becomes a useless slacker, but as long as Rosa-san is here, it’ll be alright.”
“So, as long as she holds his leash, he will be peaceful?”
But, it’s truly weird.
In this world the pattern of good women attaching themselves to such useless guys seems to be common…
I should imitate him…no, wait…let alone there being no point in even more women getting close to me, it will actually wear me down instead, I think…
“Thank you for waiting. Here’s you boar stew rice.”
A little while later Rosa-san brings us our servings of lunch.
I try it at once, but it’s tastier than before as it looks like he has repeatedly improved on the taste.
He’s called a useless brother by Betty, but he appears to be fairly serious about cooking.
Otherwise, I wouldn’t have lent him any money either though.
“However, I really don’t get it. There are also adventurers, right? What’s the idea in a fine woman sticking to such a useless guy?” (Katia)
“I don’t think you can make such a call since it’s something between man and woman.”
Katia seems to share my opinion.
Erw doesn’t appear to consider it strange for Betty’s brother to have a fiancée, saying that love isn’t bound by such inflexible rules.
“Katia, you are no good with such men?”
“Absolutely! For me, a type like hubby is much better.”
“But, I’m not all that dependable either.”
Except for my magic, I have plenty of sloppy parts as well.
“But look, you wouldn’t put your younger sister and fiancée on the spot, right? There are people who hate bringing up money when it comes to the relationship between men and women, but not allowing for your family and wife to become poor is important, too.”
True, I guess you can’t really praise the methods of Betty’s brother overly much.
“That’s definitely irrefutable.”
Katia appears to be someone with a far stricter way of thinking than we had thought.
It might be owed to her having been a first-class adventurer as a woman, albeit not belonging to a specific party.
“Hubby and me won’t get bored from being together since our homes were complicated noble houses. Being able to enjoy eating together normally in a store like this is nice, isn’t it?”
She’s right, such things might be important as well.
However, Elise has adapted quickly, and Therese has a tendency to like such stores as well.
I guess it means a simple secluded noble lady doesn’t suit me.
“But, if you understand as much, why the matter with the tunnel then?” (Wendelin)
“Hubby, don’t bring this topic up agaaaaiin….” (Katia)
Later on the management of Betty’s brother’s store would get on track, and he would quickly repay his debts to me.
He entered under the umbrella of the Arterio Company, and ran several branch restaurants in districts highly contested by many stores. He made a name for himself as a successful man.
Of course, it went without saying that it was owed to the existence of his scary wife who remained in the back.
Rather, it was her who became a celebrity in the business world, but…that was something everyone had imagined happening.
＊ ＊ ＊
“Betty, sorry. I will definitely make this store a success and pay back the debts. Otherwise, it would affect you as guarantor.”
At night of that day brother came to me to apologize while I was helping with the cleaning of the store.
“You do understand that it will put Betty-chan in trouble if the repayment is delayed, right?”
“I will do my best tomorrow as well.”
I feel jealous when I see Rosa-san and brother getting along so well, even if she scolds brother.
It makes me wonder what kind of person I’m going to marry in my future.
Once I try to imagine it, sensei’s face pops up in my mind. I try to push it back in a hurry.
“(Sensei has plenty of beautiful wives, so that’s impossible.)”
“Good grief, something like having your own sister be the guarantor of your debt…” (Rosa)
“I’m reflecting on that part. I will definitely return the money.”
“That goes without saying.” (Rosa)
I reach a certain thought while observing the two being on good terms even while arguing.
It’s about the case of brother not being able to pay back the debt.
“(Me paying it back won’t be all that difficult once I become an adult, will it?)”
A magician earns a lot.
Not to mention, I possess quite a bit of mana, and even in the prep school I’m regarded as a promising magician.
I should be able to easily pay back the debt, if I feel like it.
“(Sensei said so as well…)”
『Betty, you have a lot of mana, and you’re still in the middle of your growth. If you concentrate on your studies, you can become a good magician.』
My cheeks turn red when I remember sensei praising me.
“(Ah, but, if I delay the payback as well…)”
Since sensei is a gentle man, he would probably tell me that it’s fine to repay the debt after becoming an adult, but if I caused the payback to delay because I prioritized using the money for equipment necessary as magician and adventurer such as an expensive wand or robe, even he would make demands.
If he told me at that time that my body is the collateral…
“(If I couldn’t repay the debt, I would become sensei’s property. That might actually work.)”
When I come up with a very neat idea, I get totally happy all by myself.
And in order to realize that plan, I address my brother.
“Even if you fail to repay the debt, I won’t have any problem with it.”
“It’s okay! I will definitely pay it back! Or rather, just how little do you guys trust in me!”
“Until now there haven’t been any reasons allowing us to trust you, right!?”
While watching brother getting scolded by Rosa-san, I end up thinking that it’d be nice if brother is unable to return the debt instead.
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