Chapter 24: Finding the sweetness in every day
I devoted myself to baking cookies until the next tea party.
I was curious about other sweets and wanted to try them, but I didn’t want to go overboard at first.
You begin with what you know and work your way up.
I’m making something for someone else to eat.
I don’t want them to eat something that didn’t work.
I’ll do my best to accomplish what I can in the time I have.
This feels like I’m back in those days.
It’s unique and entertaining.
It’s not like when I was struggling to survive.
The excitement, the significance of what I do, and the future I envision
Back then, I could only see what was right in front of me, but now I can see a little further ahead.
It is needless to think about which is happier.
And so time passes.
The next tea party was approaching.
I awoke earlier than usual and finished my breakfast.
I have not yet informed His Highness.
I wanted to surprise him, so I secretly borrowed the kitchen.
also for Leo-kun and Lena-chan.
“Please don’t tell His Highness.”
“Okay! I’m going to keep it to myself!”
In a secret pose, they both put their index fingers to their lips.
They appear to have kept their word.
This allows me to focus on baking without being concerned.
Last night, I prepared the ingredients.
The kitchen will be occupied with lunch preparations before the tea party.
Between breakfast and lunch.
Make and prepare it in a fraction of the time.
“All of the ingredients are prepared.”
Let’s get started.
I imagine His Highness’s face as I bake.
The innocent smile His Highness once showed me…
I wish I could see it again.
The garden is bathed in warm sunlight after lunch.
I’m the one who arrived earlier and is currently waiting on the terrace.
His Royal Highness usually comes a little late.
“Sorry to keep you waiting, Phyllis.
“Your Highness, isn’t it early today?”
“It’s early, but not too early.”
And with that, he settles into his seat.
As is customary.
“Should we get started?”
His Highness takes a sip of his tea.
Has he noticed yet?
Or has he noticed and is pretending not to know?
I’m feeling a little frustrated.
The tension is palpable, and the number of words naturally decreases.
Then his highness’s gaze settles on the center of the table.
“――! I see.”
His Highness laughs.
with a line that appears to be noticing something.
He gives me a brief glance.
Then he reaches out quickly.
To the cookies on the plate in the center of the table,
He took a bite and popped it into his mouth.
A crunching sound is heard.
A faint gulping sound was heard.
His Highness closes his eyes bitingly.
In the midst of the tension, His Highness opens his eyes and smiles at me.
“It was delicious, Phyllis.”
I’ve been waiting for those words.
The words themselves send shockwaves through my body, shaking my mind and being.
I’ve never felt this way before.
“Phyllis made this, didn’t she?”
“Yes—You understand it very well.”
“I know. It appears to be different.”
A wider range of baked goods is always available.
When compared to those made by professionals, they are easily distinguished.
That’s something I’m aware of.
“I’m taken aback. Phyllis could make pastries?”
“Not at all, this is my first time.”
“Yes. I had cooked before due to family circumstances, but I didn’t have time to make pastries.”
His Highness takes another cookie.
He tried several different flavors this time.
One is plain, one has cocoa bean powder, and one has cheese.
It was surprisingly simple to make, and I was able to shape it.
“It’s very well done. This is fantastic for a first time.”
“It’s not that hard.”
“No, at the very least, I’ve never cooked before. I’ve never considered making it myself. So, first and foremost, congratulations on your willingness to try.”
I thought that was one way to think.
I admire the reason for the praise, and I admire His Highness as he eats the food with relish.
I thought I did well.
Still, it pales in comparison to what they sell at the top of the line.
To be honest, I was worried until he tried it.
“This black one is more intense and sweeter. That is the flavor I prefer.”
His Highness says so.
Just looking at his happy face makes my heart happy.
Whatever it is, I’m sure.
It is both important and satisfying to know that one’s efforts have been acknowledged.
“I’m glad I tried.”
I murmur quietly.
I began baking on a whim, but I intend to continue doing so in the future.
“Does Your Highness have a favorite snack?”
“I enjoy most things. Anything sweet.”
“Is there anything specific?”
“Nothing specific. Well, to put it bluntly. “
The more I learn about his highness’ preferences, the better I understand him.
Next time, I’ll do something better.
I want to give him more enticing sweets.
My motivation for baking was to please His Highness.
So, what should I bake up next?
Now I’m anticipating the next tea party.
Having a new hobby like this appears to make a significant difference in your enjoyment of life.