Cakes and Invitations
“Sorry to keep you both waiting.”
The two of them stood up to greet me as I finally finished up in the kitchen.
“Father, all finished?”
“My apologies, my Lord. For always causing you so much trouble…”
Laurier was leaning forward with undisguised glee as Sasha lowered her head in apology. Placing my hand on Sasha’s head, I spoke softly.
“There’s absolutely nothing to apologize for. I did it because I like doing it, as well as for your sakes.”
“Hmm, but, well… if you truly don’t believe what I say, then… perhaps I won’t let you sleep tonight as a punishment?”
Sasha clammed up, her face turning a brilliant shade of red. I wonder exactly which recent memory of ours is burning the brightest in her mind right now… but, well, with Sasha ‘reassured’, I turned to look at both her and Laurier.
“Well, it may be a bit late in the day, but… shall we have tea together?”
Laurier piped up happily, whilst Sasha spoke through her hands as she tried to hide her bashful face. Pushing the secret devilish thoughts I had about what I might get up to with Sasha tonight to the back of my head, I brought my freshly made sweets to the table.
“Father, what’s this?”
“Cheesecake tarts… Well, I suppose you can just call them cakes?”
That’s right… today, I challenged the famous cheesecake tart. I knew the fairly simple recipe from my previous life, so the difficult part was substituting what I didn’t have in this world when it came to ingredients and tools. It would have been nice to have some smooth mozzarella, but… unfortunately, I had to make do with some harder cheese, but I think it worked out alright.
“Cheesy cake…? Cakes can be cheese?”
Laurier looked at me suspiciously. Well, in this world, I don’t think I’ve heard anyone ever mention sweets made with cheese, so I guess this reaction is normal… but, all the same, I took my seat in between the mystified looking Laurier and Sasha to begin divvying up the cakes.
I suppose they weren’t jumping straight at the food because they were waiting for me to begin eating first, but… I’m much more interested in seeing their reactions than actually eating myself.
“Well, please dig in.”
“T-thank you very much…”
The crimson colour in Sasha’s face calmed down just a touch as she took a bite of the cake… and then, a smile bloomed across her face like a flower.
“Is that so… I’m glad.”
What a relief. I took a bit just to make sure… yeah, it’s not bad. But even though I smiled, I realized I still had a long way to go to reach the highs of what I’d tasted in my old world.
“If I’m cooking for the two of you, I’m sure it’ll be delicious, after all.”
I looked at the puzzled Laurier for a moment, then turned and winked at Sasha who sat on my other side.
“Of course. They’re packed full of love for my lovely wife and daughter, after all?”
“Mother? Your face is red, are you sick?”
“I-I’m fine. T-thank you, Laurier…”
Those words seemed to have scored a critical hit, as Sasha stared at me in astonishment for a moment and then quickly turned away. Yep… Sasha with a big smile is certainly cute, but a bashful Sasha is fine too! In fact, it’s great!
After that, our time together passed peacefully… but, suddenly remembering the invitation that Zeke handed to me, I turned to speak to Laurier.
“Laurier, the truth is that Serena-sama had a letter delivered, inviting you to attend a tea party… what would you like to do?”
“You attended her birthday celebrations today, did you not, Laurier? Have you already become so close to the Princess?”
Sasha looked truly surprised. Well, I too was surprised that Serena-sama was already approaching my Laurier like this, the very same day they had met, but… I decided to keep quiet about that.
“If you don’t want to go, I won’t force you, but… what would you like to do?”
“…I’ll go. I want to talk with Serena-sama too.”
“Is that so… then, it’s decided.”
If Laurier has made her mind up, then there’s nothing more for me to say… with a nod, I tussled Laurier’s hair.
“If you go there, make sure to have a good time.”
“Mm… um… Father… Father… can you go with me?”
“I don’t mind, but… why?”
When I asked that, Laurier beamed at me.
“Father’s sweets make everyone happy, so I want everyone to eat them too!”
…Oh, what an angel! An angel has descended from the heavens!! Struggling to keep my twitching smile from turning into a dopey grin, I spoke.
“Well, if you’re happy to have me along, I’ll do my best to make something delicious… however, it wouldn’t do to try and force Serena-sama to eat anything. If she declines to eat, simply bring them back home.”
“Don’t worry! Father’s sweets are really yummy!”
“…That’s true. My Lord’s cakes and sweets are exceptionally delicious, so I am sure that the Princess will also take to them kindly.”
The caring Sasha who sports a motherly smile and the cheerful Laurier… Ahhh, my wife and daughter are too damned cute! Desperately holding myself back from turning into a goopy doting mess, I did my best to smile elegantly at those two who looked up at me.