lol, idk why I add the -san, it’s funny i guess? Yay I can game again~ wanna play some last remnant :v
Edit: changed to the author’s new version, has bits added and removed
Volume 3 – Me and the Bride-san
17, Long time no see and Tofu Hamburg Steak (Part 1)
If there are meetings then there are also separations. That is something that we’ve all encountered in life.
However, there are also reunions. Because separation is not the end.
It’s Shuri. I was finally able to reunite with everyone. I wonder how long we haven’t met? It feels like we haven’t met for several months already.
It’s someone like me but, there have also been various changes for me.
First, there are new additions to the cooks of the mercenary corp.
“That’s how it is so, long time no see everyone”
Meeting all the cooks again at long last, tears were flowing as I was being delighted at our reunion.
These were manly tears. Everyone was crying out loudly.
Somehow…. it’s embarrassing. Hehe, I’ll scratch the tip of my nose to cover it up….
“It’s so great, Sensei came back!”
“With this, there’ll be no complaints about making Hamburg Steak!”
“Cream Stew as well!”
“Sensei, the women in the magician’s unit are complaining because there isn’t enough Amazake! Please do something about it!”
“Maybe the dip for the Boiled Tofu isn’t to their liking, they won’t eat it!”
“Alright, okay, that’s enough”
Alright, there needs to be a lecturing to all of the commanders. It somehow feels like it’s been a long time since I’ve been angry whilst smiling.
“Now then, I think that everyone already knows as well but, there will be new comrades joining our cooks.
Over here is, Gann Rubber-san. And the one over here is Adora-san. Get along everyone”
Yup, in the end, it was decided that Gann-san and Adora-san are to join us are cooks.
I promised them after all and, took action while thinking that it’ll be good.
The unexpected one was Adora-san. I thought he would think over it a little more and then give me an answer but, he gave me a relatively quick answer and became our comrade.
When I asked why, it seems that since he wasn’t able to regain his pride and confidence which had been fractured by Cougar-san into mere pieces, it made him want to take the invitation without fail.
Of course, I’ll certainly welcome him. It relates to the solution of the chronic-like lack of cooks and above all, the boost in strength is necessary.
Those two however, were surprised for some reason.
“What’s wrong? It’s alright to at least do a self introduction right?”
“A, ah, no. I was just thinking that you were missed more than I had thought…. Something like sensei fits you?”
“Oi you! That’s rude to sensei!”
At Gann-san’s words, a voice sounded from amongst the cooks.
“Yea! Sensei is an indispensable person for the mercenary corp!”
“Because if he wasn’t here then we wouldn’t be here!”
E-everyone…. to think that you guys missed me that much….!
I’m think I’m gonna cry. All my hard work…. didn’t go to waste!
“Right about now, we would be buried by Commander Riru!”
“We would be taking Commander Ahrius’ anger outbursts about her skin as well!”
“When Sensei isn’t here, we can’t stop those people’s rage!”
“Riru-san, Ahrius-san, that’s it!”
We will have a looong scolding about this. What are you trying to achieve by threatening the cooks….
“I, I see…”
Look! Adora-san is completely terrified!
“And so sensei, what will we do for today’s lunch?”
Ah, is it already lunchtime.
After that incident it has been decided that our mercenary corp is to live in the castle, so now it’s turned out that we can work in the kitchen now.
Accompanying that, Riru-san has version upped all of the stoves that use firewood to start a fire, to Riru-san’s deluxe magically engineered stoves. With this, our freedom of cooking expanded remarkably.
Now then, everyone is here as well, let’s make a light soup or…..
“Hamburg to you who is confused”
“If it’s for lunch then, Boiled Tofu”
The one’s who came in, opening the door with a slam, was Riru-san and Ahrius-san.
They were both smiling. They were making a smile with not a hint of suspicion.
Despite wearing a smile of extreme refreshing, and good will.
Murky darkness oozes out from their insides, their treachery cascading about as if all the evil in this world was forcefully crammed inside, and they were rapidly approaching me.
Shit, I gotta run.
There’s no way I can lecture these kind of people.
When I try to back away, thinking of that, my back hit something.
From behind me, Gann-san was pushing against my back, making sure that I couldn’t run away.
“Go, you’re the only we can rely on”
“D-don’t be ridiculous”
“If you don’t fight, we will be annihilated”
Eh? Then I noticed, everyone else was one step ahead and were taking refuge close to the walls.
“We’re counting on you, sensei”
Thud, my back was pushed, sending me out in front of Riru-san and Ahrius-san.
What was reflected in the corner of my vision was the moment, just as Adora-san was thrusting me away.
Et tu Adora—–!!
“Now, Shuri. Hamburg”
“Boiled Tofu, right”
The moment I tried to escape, my shoulders had been grabbed by Riru-san and Ahrius-san.
I was caught….!
It’s no good, I can’t escape!
I felt danger for my life however, something strange happened here.
The two of them, as they grabbed my shoulders, looked at each other with just their heads.
Eh? What is this? How horrifying?
“Riru. It’s also been a long time since Shuri has cooked. Isn’t it better for him to go in with something simple here and let him regain his senses?”
“Ahrius. Since it’s been a while, Shuri should go in with a dish he knows well. Riru is here for that reason”
You have drool drooping down. Saying that you are here for that sure is convenient huh? You just simply want to eat Hamburg Steak don’t you?
“Riru, no matter what dish comes I’ll eat it deliciously. If I had to, had to, haaaad to say then, I had thought that if he made Boiled Tofu here, I would be happy. No, I won’t ask if it’s impossible, naturally. However, my subordinates are also waiting anxiously for Boiled Tofu. Ah, if it’s something different then, that can’t be helped in that case. However, you know? It’s been a while so don’t you think you want to eat it? No no, if it’s not possible then don’t force yourself though…..”
So irritating! Although you were being indirect, you said exactly what you wanted!
It’s a first, trying to be so indirect and not deceiving anyone. It was something like, ‘Don’t you plan to misinterpret it at all?’. Somehow my heart seems to be running wild….
Even if he wanted to help me, Gann-san was only looking from afar. Hn? His lips are moving….
『If I try my utmost then I can pick up your bones?』
“Please wait. Since I’ve understood what you want to eat”
“Then I’ll go get the beef”
“No, it’s tofu”
The two of you, holding back, restraining your feelings…. Your eyes are scary.
“Let’s use tofu”
I don’t think I would ever forget what I saw at that moment.
A chill washed down my spine! As if it was turning to ice!
Slowly turning over to take a look, Riru-san was…..
“Haha. What a funny joke.”
And as she said that, she cracked her knuckles! Which was followed by shoulder and arm stretches, and shadow boxing!
Stop! You’re not that kind of grappler character!
“Except, it won’t be Boiled Tofu”
Whiz, whiz, started to resound.
Looking over there, Ahrius-san was swinging her arms around.
She was moving her shoulders, elbows, wrist, and fingers, all the joints in the arms just like a whip, preparing for action….!
T-there’s no way…. is she aiming to hit one of the vitals of the human body, the skin….?!
“Shuri. I wonder if my ears are hearing things…. Despite saying tofu, it’s not Boiled Tofu…. Could it be that, that was an excuse, I wonder….. Could you say it one more time?”
Hot damn, she has the eyes of a murderer.
Furthermore, Ahrius-san, who was normally responsible for releasing magic attacks from the rear, seemed to be a master at whip attacks using the hand. If I was hit by that, you would see blood everywhere from my skin splitting.
The airspace called the kitchen, was enveloped in the auras of the two. I want to faint in this extreme dread.
Ah, one of my subordinates fainted.
“Shuri, now, take the beef into your hands. You should be able to do this if tofu is a joke”
“If it’s tofu then, take the pot and hot water into your hands”
Why is it, why has it become a scene with an impression similar to that of a contract with an evil god or demon?
I could feel an overwhelming aura from the two of their backs….
However, I won’t lose here!
“It’s a Hamburg-like healthy food which uses tofu. It’s good for your stomach as well as your skin.”
“Shuri, now, let’s cook. Is there anything you need help with?”
“Riru will too. We’re together for the first time in a while”
T-these girls….! As soon as I said that, their smiles became refreshing, clear, and gentle….!
“No, since the training for the newbies will also take some time, we’ll do it, so if you can wait in the dining ha-”
-ll, before I could continue my words, Ahrius-san and Riru-san left the kitchen with a dash. Just like a storm. A typhoon. An existence which sends all of it’s surroundings flying from it’s root up, and then leaving.
What was left behind was, us, stunned.
Maybe, if I’m able to lecture them then, let’s increase it by another hour. I carved that vow into my chest.
Now then, let’s cook this tofu dish.
“Shuri, what should we do?”
“Gann-san and Adora-san, please peel the skin of the potatoes and carrots”
“Is that all?”
“The basics are important”
I think that peeling the skin off potatoes and carrots is good practice to learn how to use a knife.
Consideration of strength, angle, and the danger of the knife…. etc, there are many things to learn. Because after cutting yourself with the knife, you will take care in using it, becoming careful.
Now then, the garnish should be fine with that. I don’t know how long it will take Gann-san and Adora-san but, leaving it to the two of them, I start on the main dish.
“Ow, I cut my hand!”
“Are? There’s not much left… did I cut too deep into the skin?”
Correction, once I finish, it seems I’ll have to help.
“Now then everybody”
Let’s start earlier for that reason, in my own way. (TL:僕は僕で)
“Let’s make Tofu Hamburg Steak today”
Tofu is, good boiled, good fried, good raw. It’s an incredible ingredient.
If you boil it, the flavour of the stock is moderately absorbed, if you fry it, the fragrance and the juiciness is like that of meats, if it’s raw, there are plenty ways of preparing it such as adding soy sauce to cold tofu etc.
This time, let’s go the frying direction. I didn’t say it but, I’ll also use beef.
Basically, it means that while this dish is filling, by using beef and tofu, it is also healthy.
“That’s how it is. Understand?”
“This time’s main ingredients are, tofu, beef, nutmeg, sugar, salt, fish sauce and potato starch”
First, adding the beef into sugar, salt, and fish sauce which had it’s smell extracted, and mixing it.
There, we add the tofu and the starch. One cake of bean curd for two-tenths of starch.
Stirring this, and forming the shape.
“Please make it with this procedure. Please also know that the insufficiencies of beef can be supplemented with tofu”
“Also…. Gann-san, Adora-san. Have you finished peeling the skins?”
“No, not yet….”
Oh? It seems not even ten have been finished. Gann-san has four, and Adora-san has three.
This can’t really wait.
“Everyone, please continue making the base of the Hamburg Steak with the outline from just then. Since I’ll be helping peeling the skins.”
Requesting everyone’s help with the rest, I take a knife and started to peel the skin of the potato in my hand.
“Gann-san, if you try too hard to cut it thinly, it’ll be too slow”
Planning to be their example, I showed them how I peel the potato skin.
Turning the potato, whirling it around, peeling the skin.
After finishing peeling it with the skin still in one whole piece, Gann-san and Adora-san looked over here with an astonished look.
“E-er…. you’re quick”
“Is that so? I’m used to it, you two will also be able to reach that point soon enough.”
Saying that, I start on my second one. Time is valuable.
Peeling the skin in one go, whirling around. Free from thoughts. Peeling skins, free from thoughts as if I had attained enlightenment.
Somehow by doing this, I think, ‘I had finally returned back to the mercenary corp hah’.
Because after all, when I was in jail, there was nothing similar to making food like this for the people of the mercenary corp.
Because at that time, it was for the sake of eating with Gann-san or, Ekress-sama’s test or, for the sake of something I’m not quite sure about.
Now then, once I think about those kind of things as I peel the potato, I realised there was nothing when I extended my hand forth. Are? I think, as I wave my hand around, but I couldn’t grab anything inside the basket.
Taking a casual look, there was nothing inside.
“My? There’s nothing….?”
My my, I wonder if we have to restock our potatoes?
“Isn’t that obvious, since you did them all”
Looking next to me, Gann-san was shocked.
In his hands, there was a potato which has only been peeled until half way.
“Eh? I did?”
“Ahh, it was amazing”
Adora-san was also shocked as he said. In his hands, there was also a potato which was only peeled a third of the way.
“You wouldn’t answer us even when we called out to you, you were moving as if you were a potato peeling machine. Peeling with terrifying speed, they were all gone in an instant”
“That’s exaggerated, Adora-san”
“No, we’re pretty serious. Look, since we’re the ones holding the only remaining potatoes, you can do the rest of your work”
“Because if not then… the remainder of my pride will also be smashed up”
Ahh!? Adora-san’s face is as gloomy as when we had first met!
“Alright. Since I’ll be leaving the rest of it to you, I’ll go back over there. I’ll leave it to you”
I wonder if both of their confidences have been broken…. I made somewhat suspicious looking eyes…. Because here, you can only gain confidence through practice….
From here on, I wonder if I shouldn’t try to meddle as much?
“Have you finished?”
“Yes, here is it”
Looking at them, indeed, the base of the Hamburg Steak had been made. I see, it’s just as I had taught them, they were done beautifully.
If it’s like this then, I think it can be done without even frying it unevenly.
“Very good. Now then, put this into a pan which had been oiled and heated”
Kneading the Hamburg base into a single portion, I put it in the pan.
The Tofu Hamburg Steak was frying as it sizzles.
“At this time, please set it to low heat and put on the lid. Once around 10 minutes has passed, please flip it trying not to break the shape.
With this the Tofu Hamburg Steak is complete”
“The number we have is all we have. We must make haste but, please try not to burn it, ok?”
Since after all, this is the amount for all the commanders to guards in this castle.
After the incident, the guards who were originally in this castle and everyone in the mercenary corp, were put into the same unit.
However, within these two units, there were still some people who weren’t used to it. I hear that it’s mostly it’s the senior guards and the mercenary corp newbies who are quarreling.
Because of that when it’s time to cook, I pay attention and think so that the delicious dishes can become topics of conversation.
Curiously, the senior soldiers here were able to easily get along.
This time I’m meeting Ahrius-san and Riru-san’s request but, I think starting from next time I’ll have to pay attention to the menu…..
And, the cooks who had been working at the castle until now were boycotting and there was not even a single one of them here. I am told that it seems they cannot work together with foreign chefs from a savage mercenary corp who came and took over from the outside. Sniff.
Currently the cooks of the mercenary corp and, the people who we had recruited in a rush are rotating around.
It’s troublesome but, there’s no way around it. I think that we’ll have to do something so that they’ll come back.
And then, there’s also the castle’s food shortage.
For the sake of ending the uproar, there was a large amount of ingredients used so, it’s only natural but…. Originally, due to the faction dispute, there were no food being stored, but there were still ingredients stored for emergencies.
However, the amount reserved was calculated for the people who originally worked in this castle. With the addition of everyone from the mercenary corp as well, the consumption increased more than expected.
Even deciding to make Tofu Hamburg Steak, one of the reasons is also because there’s not enough beef guaranteed for everyone.
It seems something has to be done….
While I was thinking something ridiculous, I was just distributing the food to the soldier-sans gathered inside the castle’s eating hall. Long desks were lined up, it was a large room.
The Tofu Hamburg Steak was completed with no problems. The sauce, is the fish sauce base that Riru-san took out initially. It’ll probably go well with this too.
“Here you are, Riru-san. Ahrius-san.”
I took out the Tofu Hamburg Steak for the both of them.
Both of them were expressionless. Looking at the thing taken out, concentrating on it motionlessly.
What is it… What are they doing?
“Shuri, this is Hamburg?” (Riru)
“No, it’s Tofu Hamburg” (Shuri)
“Appearance-wise…. it’s Hamburg Steak right?” (Ahrius)
I finally understood after having made a curious face.
It looks like Hamburg Steak but there isn’t much fat. However you can’t see the tofu.
Which is why, I think they are making sure whether it comes under Hamburg or Tofu.
If they didn’t then, it’s not like they have eyes that could see through everything…. they shouldn’t…..
“You’ll know if you eat it”
“Indeed…. it’s Shuri’s cooking for the first time in a while. Allow it to delight us”
“Hn, I’m looking forward to it”
The of two of them here, without knowing the conflicts someone like me has, takes a fork and knife into their hands, and started eating the Tofu Hamburg Steak.
Cutting into it with their knives in high spirits, both of them made a seemingly strange face.
“Somehow… the texture is different” (Riru)
“Indeed. The texture is different for a Hamburg Steak. It’s somewhat, soft and fluffy” (Ahrius)
“Indeed. Since I mixed beef and tofu, I think the texture is different. Since the mouthfeel and taste is also different, if you could enjoy that too” (Shuri)
The two of them, cut a small piece of the Tofu Hamburg just like that, and brought it to their mouths.
And then, paused.
Stopping as if to ascertain the mouthfeel, taste and flavour of the Tofu Hamburg that is in both of their mouths, then chewing it, and swallowed it.
And then, instantly stood up and started shaking each others hand.
What are they doing?
“Wonderful. It goes well with the tofu” (Riru)
“Indeed. Like this there isn’t too much of the meat’s fat either. The soft mouthfeel of the tofu meshes appropriately with the minced meat, making it even more soft.” (Ahrius)
“Furthermore, it goes well with the sauce as well. The refreshing sauce which was originally outstanding with the tofu, through the process of combining Hamburg and Tofu, yields a multiplying effect” (Riru)
“It’s ridiculous, that we fought” (Ahrius)
“Yes, it was a meaningless fight” (Riru)
Why is it I wonder, why did they become so friendly all of a sudden?
Becoming like this just from the combination of Tofu and Hamburg…. From here on, when the two of them fight, I wonder if I can calm them down with Tofu Hamburg?
See, before I knew it, Riru-san and Ahrius-san are hugging, you see?
“LOVE & PEACE, desune” (Ahrius)
I don’t even know anymore.
For now, let’s leave the two of them be and return to my job as a waiter.
I was happy that all the soldiers who were eating around me too, seem to be eating happily.
However, the problem with the food isn’t resolved. At this rate, it’ll run out eventually.
Now then, what to do….
“Shuri! You here!?”
At that time, opening the doors to the dining hall, Ganglabe-san came inside.
Walking with big strides, once he found me, he rapidly approached to me.
“Ohh, I had thought that you would be here since it’s lunch time, thank goodness. You were here”
“What’s wrong Ganglabe-san? If it’s lunch, today it’s Tofu Hamburg Steak”
“That sounds good… no no, that’s not it. It sounds good but, that’s not the situa-”
-tion, Ganglabe-san stiffened up as he tried to continue.
Hn? As I was thinking curiously, there was thick killing intent coming from behind!?
“Tofu Hamburg is just that? Ganglabe, do you want a wound which doesn’t disappear on that neck of yours?” (Riru)
“Ganglabe. This is a wonderful dish. You cannot look down on it.” (Ahrius)
Riru-san was cracking her knuckles as she warms up.
Ahrius-san was stretching.
Are? When did these two have personas related to punching and kicking?
“N-no, I was wrong. Ahh, I was the one wrong. So, won’t you please stop that roundhouse kick aiming for the back of my knee?”
And then he took the damage?! Ganglabe-san, will your married life be alright?
“Ah, no, there’s urgent business. You guys come too” (Ganglabe)
“After we eat this” (Riru)
“In that case, hurry. This is seriously urgent” (Ganglabe)
“Did something happen?” (Shuri)
Ganglabe-san said with a peculiar expression.
“The legal wife, Renha Sounity has been found”
Eh? Legal wife… the ringleader of who made this time’s incident all complicated?
Hearing those words, Riru-san and Ahrius-san turned serious.
Looking completely different from the people who were being noisy over Tofu Hamburg up until now.
“Ahh. Rather than found, she was captured and brought over here” (Ganglabe)
“Captured? By who?” (Shuri)
“Ahh, by Tebis Newbyst” (Ganglabe)
Tebis… ahh, the little princess who was entranced by Mapo Tofu? How nostalgic. How long has it been since then?
I was thinking like that however, Riru-san and Ahrius-san’s expressions were, should I say, terrifyingly unpleasant or maybe, dark. That’s how they looked.
“The worst….” (Ahrius)
“Ahh, will you come?” (Ganglabe)
“Understood. Riru, the meal is postponed. If you have to no matter what then, now is the time to cram it all in” (Ahrius)
“Got it” (Riru)
Are? The situation is more severe than I had thought?
Turning around as I was called, Ganglabe-san placed his hands on my shoulders.
That face, was staggeringly painful.
“Perhaps, there might be something inside you. I’ll try my hardest but, we’re facing that princess. Even I, might only be able to take away a draw.
Saying this right after you helped us is also awkward but…. I have to borrow your strength again”
I don’t really understand it but…. if it’s my strength you need, I’ll lend out however much you want.
Now, let’s go meet her.
For the first time in a long while, Princess Tebis.