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    Yuri Empire

    Chapter 114

    New Year’s Soba Noodles

    Translated by Green Cake
    Edited by


    “I’m sorry you had to come out here.”


    “No, master. I’m always happy to come when my master calls.”


    At the end of the year, on the 40th day of the winter month, it was midnight.


    Following Yuri’s call, Sofia appeared in the reception room of the Yuritania Palace and bowed her head deeply.


    She is probably one of the busiest workers in the city of Ulysses, as she is the head of the Explorers’ Guild, which has an ever-increasing number of users.


    “I also heard that the master is treating you to something delicious that master made herself today. If you say such a nice thing, I will be happy to make time for you no matter how busy I am.”


    “Oh… I’m sorry, but I only made one part of the dish. And to be honest, I don’t know if Sofia’s taste buds will like it.”


    “I’m always happy to come over if I can at least taste some of Master’s cooking.”


    Sofia smiled cheerfully.


    If you say so, Yuri doesn’t feel bad.


    “By the way, Sofia still calls me ‘Master’, doesn’t she?”


    “Was that wrong?”


    “Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but… The reason why you call me ‘Master’ is because you call yourself a ‘slave’, right? Isn’t it strange to call me that now that I’m your ‘concubine’?”


    “Yes, thankfully I have been added to one of master concubine… From now on, I am going to do my best as a ‘concubine slave’ to gain more favor from my master?”


    “I’ve never heard of that before… What’s a concubine slave?”


    “A concubine, a slave, you mean. That would be me.”


    “………… Oh, yes.”


    Yuri immediately understood that it was useless to say anything to her.


    She’s probably no match for Sofia in words, even if she tried to tell her off. Yuri accepted her self-proclaimed ‘concubine slave’ with a feeling of resignation.


    “Am I the only one who’s coming today?”


    “No, I’m talking to everyone in my side room, not just Sofia. The food I’m going to serve today is from my hometown. It’s also an opportunity for me to use it as a touchstone to see if its taste is suitable for the people of the Holy Land, the Principality, and the Kingdom.”


    “Mm-hmm. I’m looking forward to the cuisine of Master’s homeland.”


    “While we were talking about this―――the other kids seemed to have arrived.”


    As soon as Yuri said that, there was a knock on the door of the reception room.


    “Please come in”, Yuri said to the people outside the room. Led by Estoa, the saint of the Nimun Holy Land, Lizelia and Roselotte also entered the room.


    “Good evening, sister. Thank you for inviting us here today.”


    At the same time as Estoa bowed, Lizelia and Roselotte also bowed to Yuri.


    “Welcome. I’m sorry to call you at this late hour.”


    “No, I’m usually out in the [Labyrinth Dungeon] until much later.”


    “… In moderation, please.”


    Every morning and evening, Estoa devotes herself to fulfilling her duties as a saint in the cathedral of the Holy Land of Nimun. At night, she turns into a full-fledged explorer, enthusiastically tackling the [Labyrinth] of Ulysses every night.


    Estoa level, which was already high at 64 when we first met, has now grown to 78.


    ―――This is the highest level among the explorers challenging the labyrinths of Ulysses. She has already graduated from the [Advanced I] labyrinth, where the recommended level is 66 to 80, and will soon begin to challenge the [Advanced II] labyrinth, which is the most difficult of all the labyrinths in the city of Ulysses.

    Yuri invited the three of them to sit on the facing sofa in the room.


    Sofia shifted her sitting position to the side, so Yuri sat next to Sofia on the same side. The two sisters, Estoa and Lize・Rose, sat on the other side.


    Sofia immediately took out a teapot and cups for four people from the [Maid Bag] and created an impromptu tea party.


    I invited her over to serve dinner, but I thought it would be nice to have a little conversation first.


    “The other day, my sister and I challenged the [Labyrinth Dungeon] of Ulysses for the first time together, though it was the least difficult one……”


    “Oh? Did you get interested in it from the ‘broadcast’?”


    “Yes, I did. That… actually, I’m embarrassed to admit that I’m the one who got interested in it, not my sister.”


    Lizelia replied in response to Yuri’s question.


    She still seems a little nervous, though. Even so, she seems to have gotten used to it and is now able to talk to Yuri with a smile, which is a change from when they first met.


    It made Yuri very happy to see that she was slowly opening up to her.


    “That’s surprising. I thought Lizelia had a weak temperament and would not like any kind of violence.”


    “She had been taught by a knight of the kingdom to practice stick fighting in the royal palace. Of course, it’s only a self-defense technique.


    But when she saw the low-level explorers being broadcasted, she thought that her martial arts might work as well.”


    “I see. So, how was it when you got there?”


    “…… I was too scared to fight well in front of the enemy…”


    Blushing, Lizelia murmured in a muffled voice.


    ―――It’s not unreasonable.


    If I had only learned martial arts as a form of self-defense, I would never have had the opportunity to face an opponent with a clear intention to attack. It was only natural that she would cower when she experienced it.


    “Well, It might have been a good thing that I was able to fight calmly because you were so full of yourself, Lize-sister.”


    “Fufu, Roselotte is very sisterly, isn’t she? When she saw that Lyseria was stuck, she got fired up and decided that she had to do her best here, didn’t she?”


    “Uu… Well, well, I guess you could say that.”


    Roselotte immediately blushed when Yuri interrupted her.


    A sister who loves her sister is a highly desirable quality in Yuri’s eyes.


    After that, Yuri and the others lost track of time for a while and were absorbed in talking about the Labyrinth. After some time had passed, the conversation was suddenly interrupted by a sound that rang out in the room.


    “…… I’m sorry…”


    Roselotte murmured in a small voice, her face turning bright red.


    The only thing that interrupted the conversation was Roselotte’s stomach sound, which rang out unexpectedly.


    “Fufu. I’ll go prepare dinner now.”


    Yuri told everyone this and went out of the reception room.


    Then, she received the food that she had left with Aria, the second-in-command of the <Nadeshiko>, who was waiting in a nearby hot water room with a cup of tea. He stored it in his inventory and returned to the reception room.


    Unlike the [Maid Bag] that the [Maid] occupation class acquires, the items stored in the [Iinventory] are affected by time.


    So, to keep the hot food ‘warm’, I needed to ask the child of <Nadeshiko> to take care of it for a while.


    “This is a new dish for me…”


    “It’s a noodle dish. It looks delicious.”


    “There’s something about the smell that makes me want to eat more.”


    “Sure, the colors are subdued, but the aroma is so delicious…”


    On the table in the reception room, Yuri laid out the dishes that she had received for five people. The four people in the room each gave their impressions.


    “Master, what is this dish called?”


    “It’s a dish from my hometown, called ‘Soba,’ and we like to eat it, especially at the end of the year, like today. I wanted everyone to try it.”


    What I served to the four of them was just plain, hot soba noodles.


    However, since it was made by hand and boiled by Euro, a level 200 <Gourmand>, there was no doubt that it tasted even better than it looked.


    “Hmmm… Did you make this, sister?”


    “No, I had my men make it for me. Why don’t you try a bite?”


    After saying this, Yuri took out a wooden fork from her [Inventory] and handed it to the four of them.


    To tell the truth, I would like them to eat with chopsticks. I’m sure that if I let them do this all of a sudden, the results would be terrible.


    “Wow. Delicious…! I’ve never tasted anything like it, but it’s so good!”


    “It’s so clear, yet so complex and delicious…? What is this soup…?”


    As soon as both Lizelia and Roselotte tasted a bite of the noodles twirled around their forks, they let out a cry of surprise.


    Yuri was a little worried about whether or not the taste of bonito soup would be understood by the people of this world. It seemed that her fears were unfounded, and she let out a sigh of relief.


    “It’s delicious. I could eat as much as I want…”


    “I would love to learn the recipe for this soup.”


    Both Estoa and Sofia also relaxed their cheeks at the deliciousness.


    If the taste of bonito soup can be understood by the people of the Holy Land, the Principality, and the Kingdom, then the taste of Japanese food itself can be accepted by most countries.


    “By the way, I made this one.”


    “What’s this, sister?”


    “It’s called tempura… Well, you can put it on the dish and try it for yourself.”


    Yuri deftly placed two tempura on each of the four soba bowls.


    One prawn tempura and one vegetable kakiage per person.


    As it was the end of the year, everyone in the Yuri Empire was having “New Year’s Eve Soba” for dinner today. While leaving the soba to Euro, as usual, Yuri cooked the tempura for everyone by hand.


    It was a lot of work to fry the tempura for 360 people (especially the kakiage), but Yuri is proud to say that she did very well thanks in part to [Cooking II] skills.


    The two kinds of tempura that we are serving to the four of us today were also fried by Yuri when she made them for the members of the Yuri Empire.


    Although some time has passed since they were cooked, thanks to Aria of <Nadeshiko> storage, you can still enjoy the crispy texture of the freshly made dishes.


    “Wow, I’ve never had fried food this good…!”


    “It’s so good, it absorbs the soup!”


    Sofia and Lizelia immediately shouted with delight.


    It’s the kind of thing that would make a princess of another world’s tongue moan. I think Japanese cuisine is great cuisine, don’t you?


    Whatever the case, if the four of us were pleased with the meal, we were happy.


    ―――Of course, after the meal, Yuri enjoyed the four of them.


    It was only natural that she had taken the trouble to have them become her ‘concubine’.


    It would be rude not to embrace them. There was no way I was going to shy away.


    It’s called a ‘Two-year visit’ to a shrine if you stay up all night from New Year’s Eve to New Year’s Day. But what would be the appropriate name for the ‘Princess Beginning’ who stays up all night from New Year’s Eve to New Year’s Day?
    (TN: ‘Princess Beginning (姫始め)’ also means: first intercourse of the New Year; loss of virginity; loss of maidenhead. Source: Here)

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