Sumara’s and Ondine’s Disagreement
The next morning, Lakshman woke up feeling really tired. Bleary eyed, he sat upright and looked around his room. His room was brightly lit by the sunlight streaming through the curtains. For a few seconds he just sat there, thinking nothing and doing nothing.
“Ah… Morning, morning,” he muttered.
He yawned wide and jumped off his bed. He opened his door just as Ondine was walking past him.
“Oh! Morning, Ondine,” he said, greeting her causally.
“Ah! Good morning, master,” she said, stopping and smiling at him.
He closed his door and, together, they walked down the stairs.
“How do you feel?” he asked.
“Oh… I feel a bit tired, but mostly fine,” she said and she chuckled. “Your attack sure did a beating on me.”
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have used so much energy like that,” he said looking upset.
Seeing his expression, she suddenly became flustered.
“Ah, ah, ah! Don’t be like that master!” she said, waving her hands at him in a fluster. “I actually appreciate what you did!”
He looked up, looking surprised, and said “Really?”
“Really!” she insisted, nodding her head vigorously. “My defeat made me realise I was way over my head believing my skills were great.”
“You’re talking low about your skills,” he said and smiled. “I might have actually lost if I didn’t use Energy Force like that.”
“Not true, master! If you had fought me seriously, I would have lost!”
“You can’t hide the fact, master,” she said and she stopped and looked at him seriously. “I noticed your skill level when we fought hard and fast.”
Not having any words to reply with, he simply smiled and nodded. Then they continued walking down the stairs. Just as they appeared from the stairs, their maid was waiting for them.
“Young master, your breakfast is ready.”
“Ah, good work!” Lakshman said cheerfully. “By the way, what’s the time?”
“It is now ten minutes before ten.”
“Wow!” he exclaimed in surprise. “We really long today, haven’t we.”
“Indeed,” Ondine replied, equally surprised.
They made their way into the dining room and found two bowls full of food awaiting them. They sniffed and their expressions suddenly changed to that of pure bliss. They quickly sat down and ate through their food.
“This is… delicious!” Lakshman exclaimed, looking surprised.
“Yes, it is!” Ondine said, looking at her bowl with wide eyes. “The taste is different, but it’s so good! Did you make this, Mariana?”
She turned and asked Mariana, but Mariana shook her head.
“No, Ondine. It was not me who made that dish.”
“Then who-?” Ondine began, but at that moment, Sumara entered the room.
“It was me,” she declared and they looked around.
“You cooked our breakfast, Miss Sumara?” Lakshman asked in surprise.
“Yes I have,” Sumara said proudly. “The two of you slept late and Lakshmi wasn’t feeling too well to make breakfast. So I took this opportunity to reward you with my cooking for your hard effort and training.”
“Awesome!” Lakshman said brightly. “Thank you, Miss Sumara.”
“You’re welcome,” Sumara said and she smiled at Lakshman.
Then she turned to look at Ondine. Ondine was eyeing the food at a loss for words. For a few seconds, she simply stared at her bowl of food in silence. Then, Sumara sighed in exasperation.
“Look, Ondine. I did not poison your food.”
“What?” Ondine said, startled and looking up.
“I said, I did not poison your food.”
“Oh, no, no, no!” Ondine said frantically. “I wasn’t thinking about that!”
“Then… what are you contemplating about?” Sumara asked.
“I…” Ondine hesitated before saying “This is my first time eating food cooked by, you know, someone of the demon race.”
Sumara blinked at her several times at her words. Then she closed her eyes and smiled wide.
“When I first came here to tutor Lucky in magic, I didn’t know how to cook.”
“Eh?” Ondine said in surprise. “Really?”
“Yes,” Sumara said and nodded.
Ondine hesitated, but she suddenly realised the obvious. Sumara then told her what she came to figure out.
“I requested cooking lessons from Lakshmi,” she said and she sounded proud. “It was quite strange at first, but thanks to her instructions I was able to learn to cook.”
“I see,” Ondine said and she nodded to herself. “Alright, I’ve decided!”
“Decided what?” Sumara asked.
“I’ve decided to take cooking lessons!”
“You want to do what?”
“I’ve decided to learn to cook! You got any problems with it?”
“No… But… why?” Sumara asked, sounding puzzled.
“As a Slave Spirit to master, it is only natural I learn to cook so I can cook for him in the future,” Ondine replied firmly.
Sumara’s widened her eyes in surprise as she stared at Ondine’s serious face.
“Why start now?” she asked. “You can learn to cook in the future.”
“Yes, but Lakshmi will be busy with her new born children by then,” Ondine replied.
“So… learn early and cook for your master when he starts to live alone,” Sumara said as if to confirm it.
“Exactly!” Ondine said and she smiled happily.
Sumara sighed and she said “I’m his home tutor and, as such, it is my responsibility to provide him with food and such.”
“As my master’s Slave Spirit, it is my duty to provide service for him,” Ondine said.
“You do realise that, in order to learn to cook, you will have to drop training for a while.”
“I’m fine with not training on regular basis,” Ondine said. “Anyway, it’s not like I will stop training completely. I will still train with master in the morning.”
“Ondine… you are taking this too lightly,” Sumara said, becoming annoyed. “Cooking is an art of delicacy that requires concentration and patience.”
“Are you saying I am clumsy and lack patience to learn cooking?” Ondien said, getting irritated.
“Well… I will have to admit that is a factor…” Sumara said.
“What?!” Ondine said, getting fired up in anger.
She stood up and they started arguing. While they argued, Lakshman quietly ate his food. From previous experience, he had learnt to stay out of fights between girls.
“Nothing good comes from getting in between two women,” he thought as they argued.
Ondine was stubbornly arguing about the cooking and how she will be able to learn in the future to serve her master. Sumara’s argument was how a Water Spirit, that only drinks water, can cook without tasting the food. The two of them began arguing continuously until Sumara finally could not take it anymore.
“I can do it if I put effort into it!” Ondine said.
“Alright… I understand,” Sumara said in resignation and she shrugged her shoulders.
It looked like their argument finally came to an end. Ondine sighed, but smiled triumphantly.
When she sat down, she asked “Can I please have a glass of water. It’s for my morning breakfast.”
From the kitchen, they heard Sumara say “If you want something, come and get it! I’m not your servant and I’m certainly not Mariana to do all the house work for you! You’re a woman, so learn to do some house work for a change instead of constantly polishing your sword!”
Ondine looked like she was insulted, but she rose to her feet and exited the room. A few seconds later, Indra came in and he looked very serious.
“There you are!” he exclaimed. Then he looked surprised when he did not see Ondine. So he asked “Where’s Ondine?”
“She just left to go get her drink, dad,” Lakshman informed him. Then he asked “Did you want something from her?”
“We’ll be going out in two hours for your sparring battle!” Indra said.
Lakshman smiled enthusiastically as he asked “Already, but we just had breakfast.”
“I know and that’s why I’ve decided to get this done and over within two hours. Make sure you are ready with your gear and stuff because I’ll also be checking your preparations.”
“Don’t worry, dad! I’m all over it!” Lakshman said and he winked at his father.
“Okay. Also, I’m bringing Sumara along and the two us will evaluate how your training has come so far.”
“Okay, dad,” Lakshman said and nodded at his father.
Nodding in return, Indra left the room cheerfully. It was the first time he saw his father look so excited. Feeling excited, he turned to look towards the door just as Ondine entered.
“I can’t guess without you giving me the hints, master,” she said with a smile on her face while she sipped from the glass of water.
“Dad just came in and he said that he and Miss Sumara will be testing us very soon,” he told her while ignoring what she said.
“Already, but its morning and we just ate our… uh… breakfast,” she said when she looked at her glass.
“Yeah and that’s why he’s chosen two hours after this. By then, our stomachs should have settled and we should be at full power to do our best.”
“Then I better drink quickly instead of wasting time loving the water!” she said and she gulped the water down quickly before emptying it in a few seconds.