2 Chapter 1: Morning
James stretched his arms over his head before discovering that Kira was not in his bed. Then he remembered that she would usually be cooking breakfast by now for the three residents of the shop. He imagined whatever delicious concoction she was brewing downstairs; he could almost sniff the aroma drifting through his home. He recalled her lying down beside him last night. He grinned, thinking her dislike for sleeping alone was so cute. Yet, they would only sleep together without having any late-night antics unless she was in heat. Yawning, he took a sip of water from the glass set on the bedstand.
After his musings, he jumped out of bed and entered the hot-water shower of which only he and Kira knew. The water rained on his back, washing away the last vestiges of sleep. The envy fostered if others knew he enjoyed such luxuries would drive many to do insane things even by this crazy world's standards. He carefully scrubbed his body with soap made from all natural animal fats. Well, actually, all soap in this world was all natural. Chemical plants and that sort of thing didn't exist. However, the soap had a faintly sweet smell, almost like cherries. The soapmakers had probably mixed it in to remove the faint odour.
Just as he stepped out and dried off with a cloth, the whole house shook as a royal dragon flew overhead, signaling it was about eight thirty-two. The royal messengers and dragon riders were gathering. James quickly wore his around-the-house getup, which meant he came downstairs with only a pair of jeans on.
"Good morning, Master! Today, we have grain toast with hard-boiled wyvern egg and wild boar bacon." Kyra bounded up to and greeted him.
James suspiciously glanced at his egg. He gently tapped it. "You remembered to ask for unfertilized eggs this time, right? I don't need another pet." He smiled teasingly at her.
Kira blushed, flattening her ears against her head. "Yes, Master. I remembered." James took his knife and a small, specialized mallet, tapping the egg with the mallet before piercing the cracked shell with a knife through the top. Taking a deep breath, he sliced off the top of the egg, pleased that there was no little head unexpectedly popping out of the shell. That one time would have frightened him enough to stop eating the eggs forever if not for the fact that they were so damn good. After removing the top, the remaining shell easily peeled off.
After the hearty breakfast, Kira took a worn notepad and went over it with James. "Yesterday, we received orders for two light generators, four sets of light strands, three sets of timer cookers, and one of those new picture things."
James looked at her curiously. "So have you gained the |Organize| skill, yet?" |Organize| was a requisite skill to rank up to [Butler].
Kira shook her head sadly. "I'm sorry that I haven't gained such a useful skill to help you with yet, Master. I'll try my hardest."
Patting her head, James said, "It's alright. Take your time. I just think it'll be useful if we ever try to expand."
James planned while sipping his coffee, one of his few enjoyments that existed both in his current and previous world. "Well, who ordered the picture projector? I bet it was the Baron."
Kira nodded. "Yes, master, it was Baron Jose van Pointet."
James considered it for a moment. "I bet he asked for some of the special order as well. I'll throw in a gold case for him as usual. The rest we should have in storage."
James sipped his coffee again and set the cup down. "Tell me my stock. I haven't checked in a while." Kira glanced at a new sheet on the pad. "Everything is within your quotas. The special order you made came in yesterday. You have a little over five hundred thousand Seedz saved up now." That was a decent amount of liquidity, even in this world. James figured his minimum expenses were a few hundred Seedz a day per person.
Finishing his last bite of breakfast, James rose to his feet and prepared to leave. Pausing upon remembering something, he turned to Kira and reminded her, "Give about half a month's profit to the church. It's about the time that they'll start griping at me for a donation again. In fact…" James ripped out a page from Kira's notebook and wrote down a number. "Take this amount to the church and tell them I want to host a little gathering for the people of the village as my way of saying thank you for all their business, a normal festival, of course, nothing too grand or anything. All the money raised will go to the village's development. That should keep away any donation talk till winter at least." Even in this world, the Church asked for donations.
Kira looked at it and perked her ears. "Master, this is a lot of money." Sighing but still re-examining it because he knew it was better to be certain than to be almost certain, James checked the paper to be sure he wrote the right thing. It looked fine.
He looked at her, just to make sure his eyes were seeing correctly. "It's a hundred thousand, right?"
Kira nodded hesitantly.
"Oh, be sure to tell them to have the event on one of my off-days. You know which ones those are. I'll leave it to you."
Kira looked a little glum. She took the note and muttered, "Fine. You go have fun then. This poor [Maid] will go do as you ask." Shooting him a dark look, she turned to leave.
James chuckled upon noticing her tantrum. "Don't give me that look. Of course, you're coming too."
Her ears perked again happily. "Thank you, master!" James had nearly stepped out of the door when Kira remembered something else. "Oh, and Master, it's the first again." James stopped mid-step, quickly turning from the front door back toward the stairs.