Bear-san Eats Pancakes
A couple of days had passed since I came back to Crimonia.
Mylene-san and Cliff were busy. They were subjugating the monsters around the tunnel with the help of the Adventurer’s Guild and making a road to it. They were purchasing and installing the magic lines. Also, Cliff departed to the capital a few days back. The last time I saw him, he was looking really tired, but it shouldn’t have been because of me. I believed it was divine punishment for naming the tunnel 『Bear Tunnel』.
Well, I didn’t really care about Cliff. I was hungry, so I headed towards the Bear’s Rest.
When I arrived at the shop, the two cute bear statues greeted me. Recently, this deformed bear had been a hot topic in the town. I knew it, deformed things didn’t exist in this world.
As I was looking at the shop, customers entered. It seemed that it was flourishing more than ever. Morin-san’s bread was delicious, after all.
Recently, the honey soaked pancakes Morin-san and I made together were really popular. Well, Japanese pancakes were better in terms of ingredients, but I believed that we managed to reach the point where they were quite delicious.
My goal today was eating those pancakes.
I entered the shop and saw little bears moving around. When they saw me, the children approached me, but I told them that they didn’t have to mind me and should carry on with their tasks.
The children nodded and returned to work.
As I watched them leave, I deemed their swaying bear tails cute. Such clothes wouldn’t suit an adult like me. They suited the children better.
However, something troublesome had happened recently.
A few days ago, I saw the orphans in their Bear Uniforms walking through the town like it was normal.
When I confirmed it with Terumi-san, it seemed that some children wore them even during their days off, and the number doing so had been slowly increasing. I quickly gave them money to buy normal clothes, but they said, 『It helps advertise the shop, so isn’t it okay?』.
It was still too early for the costumes to become popular in this world.
I asked Terumi-san to tell them to stop, but I didn’t know if it would really help.
『They all love you and want to imitate you. That’s why you should let them do whatever they want.』
Was what she said, but my instinct was telling me that it was the only line that shouldn’t be crossed. If it was crossed, I could already imagine that the world would be infested with costumes.
That was the conversation I remembered having with Terumi-san.
As I was walking towards the kitchen in the back, I saw a person I knew well.
Rurina-san was eating pancakes by herself.
「Yuna-chan, it’s been a while.」
「Rurina-san, what about your job?」
I sat down in front of Rurina-san.
「I just finished my job and returned yesterday. I plan to rest for a while. What about you, Yuna-chan?」
「I came to eat as well.」
I caught a passing Bear Girl and ordered pancakes and fried potatoes. Normally, a person had to go to the counter, but this was my manager’s privilege.
「Yuna-chan, I wanted to ask you something, but is it okay?」
「What is it?」
「Are you related to the Bear Tunnel?」
「…Why do you think so?」
I tried to calm down.
「You see, it is the name, and the statues in front of the tunnel are Swaying Bear-chan and Hugging Bear-chan, right?」
「You saw them?」
「I told you I just finished my job, right? The job was killing the monsters around the Bear Tunnel.」
The monster subjugation Cliff was talking about, huh. Then it was normal for those statues to be seen.
「Don’t talk about them, okay?」
「That’s okay, but the ones who know you will find out immediately, you know.」
In the first place, how many people knew about Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear?
There should be a lot of people who had seen them from afar, but not many had seen them up close, so they wouldn’t find out that those statues were Swaying Bear and Hugging Bear, right?
I prayed that it was so.
As I was thinking that, honey soaked pancakes and fried potatoes arrived.
I thanked the girl who brought them. The girl smiled happily and went back to work.
I lined up the freshly made fried potatoes and pancakes in front of me.
「The food here is delicious, right?」
Rurina-san extended a hand towards my fried potatoes, but I didn’t stop her. After all, I had just requested something from her a moment ago. If nothing was left, I would just have to ask for more.
As I was eating the honey soaked pancakes and enjoying the blissful moment, Terumi-san approached me.
「Ah, Yuna-chan really is here!」
Was it a problem that I was here?
「Great, I have something I want to discuss with you.」
「Did something happen?」
「It’s about the shop.」
Terumi-san looked around.
「Is it something you can’t say here?」
「Hmm, that’s not it, but…」
She was worried about what to do.
「Then, we should go deeper inside.」
「Rurina-san, you can have my potatoes, so go ahead and eat them.」
I left my potatoes and I only brought the half-eaten pancake to the break room. When we entered it, I heard her story.
「It seems that we won’t be able to sell the pancakes that you are eating now anymore, Yuna-chan.」
I stopped the hand that was bringing the pancake to my mouth.
「The price of honey just jumped up.」
「Why would that be?」
Honey was a must when talking about the pancakes.
Well, jam and other substitutes were also okay, but I wouldn’t budge from the fact that you had to put honey on pancakes.
「Well, the reason is simple. It seems that they can’t procure honey anymore. That’s why the price rose.」
「And the reason that they can’t procure honey is?」
「The supplier said something about monsters appearing.」
Had a yellow bear appeared near the beehive?
(TL: Dunno what the reference is. Rilakkuma or Winnie the Pooh?)
「That’s why, if the prices continue to rise, we won’t be able to get our hands on it, so the pancakes and all other foods using honey will disappear from the shop.」
「So, you want me to kill those monsters?」
「That’s not it. I am talking about the shop here. There should be a monster subjugation request at the Adventurer’s Guild, right? Yuna-chan, you are the owner of the shop, so you have to think about the shop’s interests!」
That’s why I thought it should be enough to just go and defeat the monsters to procure the honey. I normally acted without thinking, but in this situation, it would be dangerous to just rush in as usual.
「We can either temporarily stop selling all honey related goods or raise the prices of those goods to account for the raised price of honey.」
「We’ll sell them after raising the prices?」
「It will decrease the frequency, but it should still sell. Although, the honey goods are really popular with the children, so I don’t want to raise the prices.」
「Then, what should we do?」
「I am discussing that with you!」
She was totally right.
There was a total of three possibilities. Either we stopped selling it, sold it at same price knowing we would be losing money, or raised the prices to account for the honey.
「What did Morin-san say?」
「The talk about money is a bother, so she left it to me.」
What a Morin-san like reason.
「She only wants to be informed in advance if no honey arrives, so she can change the menu.」
「How’s our stock?」
「Looking at the speed it is being sold at, it should only last for two, three days at most, I think. That’s why I’m worried.」
Hmm, what should we do?
I didn’t mind losing profit for a while, so it should be okay to just buy it, but…
「Honey goods are popular, right?」
「Everything we serve here is popular, you know. That’s why, the overall sales won’t change a lot even if the honey goods disappear, but there will be some sad customers, particularly children.」
Well, it wouldn’t be a problem if the issue with the honey was resolved, right?
「I understand. I will go to the Commerce Guild after I eat this.」
I put the pancake on my fork inside my mouth.
「Is that really okay?」
「I always leave everything regarding the shop to you, Terumi-san, so I should do owner-like things sometimes.」
Well, I had continued to live like a NEET ever since I came back from Mireera. I should do some work sometimes, or I would become a bad example for the younger children.
I had to preserve my pride as an adult.
That’s why, I went to the Commerce Guild after I finished eating my pancake.
As expected, Bears are indeed a honey story material.