Chapter 2-28 : Final Push Ⅰ (part 2)
After Leonora-san guided me to the back of her store, I saw a woman of the same age as her arranging food on the table.
I bowed to her and introduced myself.
「My name is Sarasa. Nice to meet you.」(Sarasa)
「Ah, you don’t have to be so polite. I’m Filione. As you can see, I’m Nora’s… I mean, Leonora’s employee. I manage her store, do chores and sometimes cook for her.」(Filione)
The woman, Filione-san, waved her hand lightly and smiled at me as she introduced herself.
「Come. You can sit here.」(Filione)
Filione-san then showed me my chair.
「I’m sorry for coming all of a sudden. Am I troubling you?」(Sarasa)
「No, not at all. Nora earned a lot of money recently thanks to you, so please don’t worry about it.」(Filione)
As I sat down, Filione-san lined up the bread, soup, sautéed chicken and vegetable stir fry with egg on the table.
Generally speaking, it’s quite a feast for me, especially the eggs, because we don’t have them in the village.
「Your dishes look fantastic!」(Sarasa)
「Is that so? I’ll be glad if you like the taste too. Let’s eat before it gets cold. Nora, please come and sit down.」(Filione)
「Okay~ Alright then, let’s eat. I hope you like it.」(Leonora)
「I’m sure I will.」(Sarasa)
First, I tried the soup.
I scooped up the soup with my spoon and took a sip.
Hmm… It originally has a simple taste, but the vegetables and the juice from the meat makes the taste richer.
After taking a bite of bread, next, I tried the vegetable stir fry with egg.
Actually, it’s a fairly high-class dish.
The egg melted as I chewed the vegetables, and then they were sofly mixed together inside my mouth. This is really good.
If Maria-san was like a professional cook, then Filione-san was like a mother that was good at cooking.
「How’s my cook’s food? It’s pretty good, don’t you think?」(Leonora)
「Yes, it’s very good! I’m glad I didn’t eat at a restaurant somewhere.」(Sarasa)
「Hey, Nora, I’m originally not your cook, okay? …By the way, this girl is the young alchemist you told me about, right? She’s a cute, good girl just like you said.」(Filione)
「Right!? That’s why we need to protect her!」(Leonora)
「Eh? Do I need to be protected?」(Sarasa)
When I asked that, Leonora-san scratched her head and smiled wryly.
「Well, a girl like you makes me worried. I keep thinking about what would happen if you stay in a weird inn with weird people.」(Leonora)
「Ahaha… So that’s why you let me stay overnight here the first time I came here.」(Sarasa)
I didn’t have the strength to go back and forth from my village to this town in a single day back then, so I spent the night here.
「Come to think of it, I didn’t meet Filione-san that time.」(Sarasa)
「Ah, I had something to do, so I was away from the store. Did Nora give you weird food as dinner back then?」(Filione)
「Ahaha… No, but her food tasted kinda bland, to be honest.」(Sarasa)
「I knew it. Sorry about that. Nora is not good at cooking.」(Filione)
Listening to our conversation, Leonora-san pouted.
「Hey, Fii, you said too much… Well, I know I’m not good at cooking. That’s why I’m grateful to you for cooking for me every day.」(Leonora)
「Hahh… I understand that you want to focus on your alchemy work, but can you at least do chores or something sometimes?」(Filione)
「No, I don’t want to! Doing chores is just a waste of time. That’s why I hired you.」(Leonora)
As Leonora-san shook her head while saying that, Filione-san lowered her eyebrows.
「I’m pretty sure you hired me to manage your store though… I can always quit anytime, you know?」(Filione)
「No, please! I’m sorry! Please don’t leave me alone!」(Leonora)
While begging like that, Leonora-san clung to Filione-san’s waist.
「Seeshh… Sarasa-chan, I’m sorry you have a childish senior like this.」(Filione)
「A, Ahaha… Leonora-san is a reliable person actually. By the way, have you known each other for a long time?」(Sarasa)
「Fii, what do you mean by “unfortunately”!? …Well, I hired her not long after I opened my store, so we’ve known each other for about…. ten years, I believe.」(Leonora)
Master and Maria-san have known each other for a long time too.
I hope my relationship with Lorea-chan will be like theirs too in the future.
「Actually, I also hired someone I trust to take care of my store. She helps me a lot.」(Sarasa)
「I see. After all, we normally won’t have enough time to do everything by ourselves after opening a store so it’s best to hire someone. We’re lucky that we found someone we could trust. If I didn’t hire Fii, I would never be able to spend time on my workshop.」(Leonora)
「You’re right. I can focus on completing the Encyclopedia of Alchemy in my workshop because someone takes care of my store. I can also leave my store like this anytime.」(Sarasa)
「Exactly. But my Fii is convenient. Other than managing my store, she does the chores and cooks for me too!」(Leonora)
Leonora-san talked as if she was boasting about Filione-san.
「Hahh….. I was hired as a clerk, but I ended up becoming her cook and her household assistant before I realized it… Nora doesn’t want to do anything troublesome after all…」(Filione)
「Ehehe… Sorry about that, but I’m grateful to you, really! …But hiring a person who gets along too well with you is actually a problem too.」(Leonora)
「Eh? What do you mean?」(Sarasa)
If your employee gets along very well with you, I think your store will run well though.
「Umm, it’s hard to explain, but you will eventually think, “Is it okay if we keep doing this?”」(Leonora)
「Yeah, and as a result, Nora keeps growing old without getting married.」(Filione)
「Hey, look who’s talking!?」(Leonora)
「That’s why, Sarasa-chan, you need to be careful. Your chance to get married in the future will slip away the moment you think it’s convenient to have someone who helps you with everything.」(Filione)
I’m sorry, Filione-san. I feel like that chance has already slipped away…
「However, hiring a person who doesn’t get along with you is not good either.」(Leonora)
People who don’t go well with you usually won’t last until they remember their work and become a full-fledged employee.
「If you can’t hire either of them, what should you do then?」(Sarasa)
「The ideal way is to leave your shop to your employee and do everything else by yourself, but…」(Leonora)
「Unfortunately, it’s impossible for Nora. Once she starts doing something at her workshop, she often forgets to eat and sleep.」(Filione)
「It can’t be helped, right? I think most alchemists are like me. Sarasa-chan, you sometimes lose track of time when you’re working at your workshop too, right?」(Leonora)
「Hahh…. But, Sarasa-chan, please be careful not to rely too much on your employee and end up like this person.」(Filione)
「Hey, what do you mean by that!?」(Leonora)
「Ahaha… Okay, I’ll be careful.」(Sarasa)