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    A Cookbook for Leona [A-Rank Exam]

    SlayerMathis
    SlayerMathis

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    Lineage : Bladesmaster
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    Posts : 391
    Guild : Meliora Vitae
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    A Cookbook for Leona [A-Rank Exam] Empty A Cookbook for Leona [A-Rank Exam]

    Post by SlayerMathis 30th November 2019, 7:40 pm

    Jin had just finished his embarking to Desierto. Alma, one of the aces of Silver Wolf, had sent him out to try to get a renowned chef from the country to help Leona's cooking, whether by lessons or by getting a cookbook created. Jin sighed as Four-Fingers let him leave the ship. Leona's cooking was...something even the Bringer of Death feared. It certainly was not enough to strike a man down from the mere taste, but it was enough to prefer eating just about anything else. Jin's time with the Howl of the Wolves was proof enough. He was tempted to even try eating the dirt to save himself, but at the very least Alma was willing to attempt to improve the guildmistress's cooking.

    It might be a lost cause, honestly.

    I'd be willing to try anything. Plus, probably would be best to not enrage a Wizard Saint.

    The Bringer of Death saw that as fair enough as they entered further into the port town of Triadh. It was far from the largest city in Desierto, not even one of the cities worthy of housing a Sultan, but it was large enough to certainly have some sort of world-renowned chef, or at least one with even the slightest capability of making something that would be enjoyable to eat. He looked around the town cautiously. At the very least, the Sea Snakes were courteous enough to him to allow him to read while aboard their ships. Before setting sail from Hargeon, he had grabbed a copy of "A Guide to Desierto: Deserts, Demagogues, Dunes, and Divination" to brush up on his knowledge of the foreign nation. It housed three sultans as its rulers, and was a large hub of trade due to the excess of minerals within the nation. However, the main takeaway from this was one of the first sentences in the entire book. It read: "While Desierto boasts roughly the same percentage of magic-attuned citizens as Fiore, do not take this as a sign that the treatment of magic is the same. Rather, it is closer to a mindset of Pergrande. Magic-users are ostracized, and the authorities will take any crime committed by a magic user as a means for imprisonment or even execution.  Wizards travelling to Desierto should be wary of the magic they use and how they use it, especially within larger townscapes such as the cities of Sultans, Haralla, Ashkevar, and An Raya, or port cities such as Mecika or Triadh."

    Jin was sure to take note of that as he browsed around Triadh. The city was unbearably hot, especially with Jin's ill-suited choice of attire. He did his best to stick to the shadows, both out of desire to cool off and the sudden intrinsic desire he had obtained with the sudden acquisition of Slayer status. He sighed, doing his best to look around the town. He had a purse of Jewels to shop around the city, though he had little desire to. Rather, he would use the Jewels in the event that he would need to bribe his Guildmistress's would-be cooking instructor. He had hoped it would not come to such a thing, but it was always good to keep options open. He asked around the town, seeing if there were any capable chefs, where he would be pointed to a nearby restaurant. The name was in the native language of Desierto as opposed to the more commonly spoken Earthlander language Fiore had adopted as its own. Nonetheless, he figured that the employees would at least be able to speak his tongue, and that the chef he was looking for would be able to understand his pitch.

    Being seated after a half-hour wait, Jin took a close look at the menu. All the foods were vastly different from those that Jin would see in Fiore, but perhaps that was for the best. Leona's attempts at cooking were likely supposed to be more native Fiore foods, though they did not quite end up tasting very edible. Even though he knew his goal was to pry away the master chef of the establishment, he felt little reason to not partake in the food. He had managed to convince himself that it was for the purpose of ensuring the chef was as good as the people claimed. Sure enough, he enjoyed the meal and, under the guise of wanting to personally compliment the chef, he bade the waiter who had served him to bring forth the master chef he was seeking.

    "Before I say anything else, I have to start out by complimenting the food. It certainly was delicious, and I'm sure you could teach anyone to cook well."

    "You want me to teach you?" the chef, a slender-looking woman asked. "You are capable enough, I am sure. Leave."

    "Wait, wait, wait! Not me, I want you to help teach the mistress of my guild to cook."

    She rose an eyebrow quizzically at the Silver Wolf wizard. "You are in wizard guild? Then that would mean you are from Fiore. Perhaps I should have been able to tell from you not speaking in the native tongue, but it matters not. Why come to Desierto? Why not look for a chef from Fiore?"

    "There's a few reasons for that, Miss..?"

    "Zulfa."

    "Miss Zulfa, thank you. As a starter, the mistress of my guild is a native of Desierto, or at least lived here for a long time. We've tried getting various chefs in Fiore to try to help her absolutely dreadful cooking, but there was no luck from any of them. The thought was that maybe if she could at least cook some native dishes, then it would be at least some help. That aside, she's one of the Ten Wizard Saints. A lot of people in Fiore would feel afraid to criticize her awful cooking, because she'd have a lot of jurisdiction over their lives, whether by her sheer power or by her association with the Fiore Magic Council. And, you can choose whether or not to believe me, but the food I had today was better than anything I'd ever tasted in Fiore, and I travel through the country a lot for work. So it seems like I made the right call coming to you."

    She mulled it over for a moment, taking a seat in the booth chair opposite Jin."And what would I get out of this arrangement, Mister..?"

    "Jin Auri-El, of Silver Wolf. As for you, you'll get the full protection of a Fiore Wizard guild that has two of the Ten Wizard Saints of Fiore, among a slew of other highly-talented wizards. If you wished to learn magic, I'm sure one of us could teach you anything you wanted to, whether it be someone like myself or one of the Wizard Saints! That aside, we can ensure you safe travel to Fiore, alongside a fair wage and-"

    Zulfa slammed her hand on the table. "Not interested. I am perfectly fine in Desierto. I see no reason to leave my homeland. You promise safety? I do not need safety in Desierto. I am safe enough here. You promise a fair wage? I own this establishment. It is the most prolific restaurant in the fourth-largest city in the whole country. No wage you could pay could part me with this place, even if I were just a chef. You wish to have me learn magic? I tell you, child, that I have seen many men die for their magic. I have seen many men and women and innocent children die due to evildoers with magic. I'm not interested. Begone back to your Silver Wolf guild and tell your guildmaster that you fear her cooking yourself."

    "Alright, fine! I guess you won't teach her how to cook, even if it were possible to. But at the very least, could you do something to help? Like an information-storing lacrima or anything like that? Maybe a cookbook?"

    "You want a cookbook? You mean you want me to write out the secrets of my establishment for no cost? You want me to sell my life's work, the life's work of my mother and her mother and her mother and her father before her? No price can make me give you such a thing! You are an insult to my pride! You are an insult to the pride of the people of Desierto! If anything, I should be calling the authorities on you for defamation of my work! Since you are a wizard of a wizard guild, you certainly will be-"

    Jin tossed the purse of Jewels on the table. "I'm not asking for your most secret recipes. If anything, I'd be fine with even just a modified version of a normal cookbook. Just basic, everyday recipes that anyone could cook with just the slightest bit of extra additions to make the food into something that could be sold at a food stall and be considered 'okay, but nothing special.' I've accepted that, at this point, regardless of how powerful of a wizard she is, she's probably never going to be able to cook at even a three-star rate. That's why I needed to go to the very best. Even with the greatest instruction, she could never even be acceptable at somewhere like this, but I want her to at least be able to cook travel rations that fill you up instead of making you want to vomit all of it right back up. All that's in that coin purse and fifty percent of what my associates sell on this business trip is yours if you just do that much."

    Zulfa glared at Jin, slowly sitting back down. "Associates? Business Trip? Tell me more."

    Jin smiled. He finally got somewhere. "I'll admit, my associates aren't exactly the noblest people out there. In fact, they're pirates. All the goods they're selling are illegally obtained. They're pawning them off for a reasonable price because their leader is a businessman who just so happens to also be a pirate. I'll tell them to give you fifty percent of what they get in exchange for this cookbook."

    "You bluff. You cannot get pirates to agree to fifty percent of their shares."

    "Oh, but I can. I beat their captain in a fight. Since that time, I got stronger tenfold, no, hundredfold. I can kill them with ease at any point in time, and yet I choose not to because they are a wise business decision. Just like this would be a wise business decision for you."

    "I will take your deal under one extra condition. All of them must come to eat at my restaurant for dinner tomorrow. If even one deckhand if not present at the dinner, I will not give you your cookbook."

    Jin extended a hand. "Deal. I'll tell the captain to make sure everyone gets dinner tomorrow. Although, I am curious. Why tommorow's dinner and not today's?"

    Now Zulfa was the one smiling. "Tuesdays I charge double. Oh, and don't think you'll get away with just having them come along. You were the businessman that convinced me to do this, so you're paying as well. Oh, you're also not allowed to tell them that I charge double. They are pirates, so they will eat a lot."

    "I assume you still want the purse of Jewels I have on the table as preliminary payment and still half of the Jewels they get from their shipment?"

    "Of course. Meet all of those things, and you will be rewarded with the cookbook. Whatever you do, do not try to make things suspicious with your own spending of money. You are to order as normal. You can certainly tell them about my Tuesday rules, but only after they receive the bill. I hope for your sake that you succeed in all of this."

    She shook Jin's hand before he could rescind it. He sighed, telling Four-Fingers of the deal that had been made. If they did not give her half of the Jewels they got from pawning off their goods, then Jin would not get the cookbook and they would have to face his wrath and, after telling a quick lie, they believed they would also need to face the wrath of Leona and Leila. They swiftly agreed, all enjoying a dinner befitting of a pirate. Four-Fingers was curious why they were the only people in the restaurant, with Jin having to lie and say that they must have gotten lucky with the day. Their acceptance quickly turn to apprehension when Four-Fingers got the bill and Jin told them the truth of the matter. Nonetheless, they agreed to pay, and their business profit of two hundred thousand Jewels had suddenly turned into a profit of a mere twenty six. Total. No hundred, no thousand. Just a mere twenty six Jewels from their profit. Jin promised to help them acquire more goods for an upcoming trip as recompense, and, as he was leaving the restaurant, Zulfa handed him a cookbook. At the very least, she listened to her word, and Jin was off to return to the Phoenix Mountains



    WC: 2194


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    A Cookbook for Leona [A-Rank Exam] DcM8us5

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