「A-are you already done? That was really quick for such intricate dishes. And it looks so delicious…and it smells so good…」
「Hahaha. Let’s eat, let’s eat.」
Ria prayed to a god who I had never heard of.
Maybe she was poor now, but she probably did have a good upbringing.
Let’s eat! I thought silently in my head as well.
「How should I eat this?」
「Ah, I guess you probably don’t know what rice is. So you ladle it in your fork like this. But it’ll taste better if you eat it together with the hamburg steak. Did you know that?」
「Let’s see. It’s alright to eat anyway you like, but the way it tastes the best is if you split the fried egg over the hamburg steak. 」
I cut the fried egg open with my knife.
The unhardened egg yolk drizzled out from inside and mixed into together with the demi-glace sauce on the hamburg steak.
「It tastes really good when you eat this egg yolk and demi-glace sauce together with the meat underneath.」
To demonstrate, I took a bite of it. Yup, it was delicious.
「Wow. I’ll try eating it too!」
Even if she didn’t know what a hamburg steak was, Ria probably used the fork and knife better than I did.
Ria broke apart the fried egg on the hamburg steak and skillfully mixed the melted egg yolk and demi-glace sauce together with the hamburg steak before she brought it towards her mouth.
It must have been pretty delicious. She probably tried to control herself but her body was bobbing up and down, ever so slightly.
「I-I’ve never eaten something so delicious in my life. 」
「You don’t need to exaggerate. Or could it be that you’re just really hungry from that incident in the dungeon 」
「I’m telling the truth! I used to live in a mansion too but even then, I never had anything as delicious as…mm~~~and it tastes even better with this thing called rice」
「When you say it like that, I guess it was really worth making it」
Even if it was just flattery, I was happy to hear those things.
Although I only actually made the fried egg and the salad.
But it was certainly true that I felt like the fluidity of the egg yolk of the fried egg was done better than usual today.
I probably did well because I wanted to make Ria happy. I felt a wave of happiness rush over me as I watched her eating so happily. Food really did taste better when you eat with someone else.
♦︎ ♦︎ ♦︎
After we finished eating dinner, I went to wash the dishes, with Ria helping me out.
In the cramped sink area, we washed the dishes huddled beside each other.
Today was the only day that I wouldn’t have minded even if there were 10 times more dirty dishes than usual.
「Here you go」
I was in-charge of getting rid of the dirt on the dishes with the sponge and detergent and Ria was in-charge of washing the soap off.
Everything was cleanly eaten off of Ria’s plate. And the same went for mine.
「It really was delicious. Especially the dish you call the hamburg steak 」
「I see. It was worth the effort making it then. That’s good.」
「Mixing in the creamy egg yolk together with the sauce, just, wow!」
I was glad that I made what I did. From the bottom of my heart.
「By the way, are the hamburg steak and rice, as well as the salad, some sort of artifact with special effects like the cola just now?」
W-what… They weren’t artifacts of any sort, at least to my knowledge. They were just made of normal ingredients cooked in a normal way.
「I think it’s probably temporary but I can somehow feel my strength and magic growing stronger! I know that those sort of really valuable medical artifacts do exist, but is the food you make similar to that, Sir Thor?」
Is it? Is what she asked. But I had no idea… It was true that, in games, some dishes that you made had those sort of special effects.
「I wouldn’t know because I can’t check my status here but I’m right, right~? Hehehe」
Ria said, as she gave me a face with「I know what you’re up to」written all over her face, as she smiled at me.
But she probably didn’t know. Worse, she was misunderstanding it.
As I smiled back at her with a vague answer, Ria started to talk about other things.
「Your cooking is great too but the artifacts you use for your daily life really are very very amazing, Sir Thor.」
「What? Artifacts for daily life?」
「Yes! As I said before, most artifacts we usually see are made as tools for fighting」
Thinking about it, no matter what the time period was, the field that demanded the latest technology is always war.
And the budget poured into that research is always disproportionately big. It was probably the same for the other world.
「That’s why I love artifacts used for daily life. I was scared that you were experimenting with some terrible artifact, since you lived so deep in the dungeon, Sir Thor.」
「Well, I do have some dangerous artifacts. 」
Shock was written all over Ria’s face.
There were guns on Earth. And there were missiles and even nuclear weapons.
「Not that they’re anywhere near here.」
「That’s good~I’m relieved.」
We were mostly done with washing the dishes.
I sat Ria down and we started having the conversation she promised me. I wanted to learn as much about the dungeon world as possible.
I’ll bust out the black tea and potato chips.
「What is this?」
Ria held up a single potato chip, carefully and fearfully.
「You could kind of call it an after-meal dessert. But I guess calling it a snack would be more accurate. Just try a piece」
After nibbling a bit of the potato chip around the corners, Ria stopped for a while, before she started eating the second piece, then the third.
「This is… delicious. I even sort of feel like my body became lighter. 」
Ooh. It seemed that it made her happy. That was good.
And…this was just a guess but it was possible that potato chips boosted your [Agility] temporarily.
I made a memo. I’ll experiment with it later.
Although she already ate everything.
「Ah, what a shameful thing I have done…」
「No, no, it’s alright. 」
It made it easier for me if she let her guard down a bit too.
Trying to match with RIa, my posture was improving quite a bit today.
Her back was always completely straight.
For now, it seemed that she was ready to have the conversation. There were a lot of things I wanted to ask her but…first, I wanted to ask her about statuses more than anything!
「By the way, I kinda want to ask you about the stuff that’s happening above the dungeon soon」
「Yes, of course. I did promise you.」
Ria answered cheerfully.
Nice. First I wanted to ask her about skills.
「What are some examples of rare skills up there?」
「What? Rare skills? There are a lot of different types. But the super rare ones would probably be those like「The fate of the Hero」or 「Darkness Magic」」
「The fate of the Hero」? The more questions I asked her, the more questions I had.
But first, let me ask her the question I originally intended to ask the most.
「Is the skill「No maximum growth」considered rare up there?」
「Oh, 「No maximum growth」! It’s a very rare skill!」
「But compared to the skills I mentioned just now, 「The fate of the Hero」or 「Darkness Magic」, it is more common. It’s just like how some people have 「Unemployed」under their occupation」
「Buargh! Cough cough」
Hearing the word 「unemployed」, I accidentally spit out the black tea I was drinking.
「A-are you alright!?」
「Some tea just got stuck in my windpipe.」
As expected, things aren’t going to be so convenient.
「Is 「No maximum growth」considered a strong skill up there?」
Rather than how rare it is, it’s probably more important how strong the skill is.
「Of course it is strong. But there are very few people who can use it well because levelling up is so hard」
It probably wasn’t that hard at the point I was at. But there was a possibility that it would get increasingly harder the stronger I got.
That’s how it works for levelling up in games too.
As expected of Ria. Being in a combat occupation, she was knowledgeable about combat skills.
「It would be the strongest skill for someone who can keep winning battles that are a matter of life or death. I guess one could say that it’s a type of skill where being a late bloomer is taken to the extreme and where there’s a possibility that you might fail. 」