Chapter 13: Pay! Now!
Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
Mag watched and waited for a while. While the few passers-by had shown some interest in his restaurant which had totally different characteristics than the nearby shops, he didn’t see anyone who wanted to enter for now.
Mag went back inside, cleared the table, and went to wash the dishes, while Amy was sitting on the long-legged chair behind the counter, playing with the bluish violet fire in her hand in high spirits, mumbling some spells all the while.
After cleaning up everything, Mag went out of the kitchen. Seeing that there was still no sign of any customers coming, he pulled up a chair beside Amy and watched her play with fire.
Suddenly, Amy turned to look at Mag, and asked, “Father, if I threw this out, would it be like magic caster’s magic?” She raised her hand and made a throwing gesture.
“No, no, no!” Mag waved his hand immediately. If she threw it out, even if the restaurant wouldn’t be burned down to the ground, some tables and chairs would surely be damaged, and seeing how the system was mean with its money, the remaining 2,700 copper coins might not even be enough for restitution.
“Don’t worry, Father. I won’t really throw it out.” Looking at Mag’s nervous face, Amy burst into laughter, and then she shook her hand and extinguished the fireball.
Mag let out a sigh of relief. He thought about Amy’s question and nodded. “If you can throw it out and actually hit the target, then it can be called the fireball magic.”
Amy shook her head, not very sure of herself. “Amy is not able to do that.”
“Don’t worry,” said Mag, smiling. He looked at her, eyes full of encouragement. “Father will practice with you till I find a proper master for you. No one is born a magic caster. Amy is already very amazing because you can make a fireball all by yourself. I’m sure you can do it.”
“Yes, Father. Amy will try!” Amy nodded vigorously. Then she looked toward the door and said in a little confused tone, “But why does nobody come and eat in our restaurant, Father? Your rainbow fried rice is so good.”
“Because they haven’t tried it, they have no idea that it is that good. Not long after, I’m sure people would line up to eat here.” Mag smiled, but he felt a little helpless inside. 600 copper coins was indeed a pretty high price for normal people, but the Chaos City was never short of wealthy people. Every species had a handful of wealthy people who loved thrill, often hung around in this city, and even came here for long-term settlement.
After all, here, dwarves could enjoy the service of beautiful human girls; trolls could find demon strippers; even goblins might be accompanied by barmaids… Only money was needed. One could literally do anything here with money.
“If we have too many customers, Amy can help Father out.” Amy looked at Mag with her shining eyes.
“Then what can you do, Amy?” asked Mag, smiling.
“Amy can help collect money. I learned arithmetic from Teacher Luna the other day. She said I am very good,” said Amy as if trying to be impress him.
“Luna?” Mag searched in his memory and remembered immediately. Luna was a teacher working at Chaos School, which was owned by the Gray Temple. He had the impression that she was a young girl who loved wearing dark green dress, and who was normally condescendingly cold to others, but a totally changed person when she was with the children—she would become very kind and amiable, and was loved by them.
Since Amy couldn’t afford her tuition fees, she had no right to go to school. However, she often went to the Chaos School and watched them have class with her hands on the top of the outside wall. Luna liked her very much and often let her inside to listen with other students; sometimes, she would teach her alone and give her something to eat, so she had left a pretty good impression on his predecessor.
“Yes. And if they won’t pay, Amy will get angry and scare them with the fireball,” said Amy, nodding.
“Get angry? Amy knows how to get angry?” Mag didn’t quite believe her.
Amy nodded solemnly. “Sure. I watched the next-door dwarf grandpa get angry.” And then she put her two little fists in front of her face and widened her eyes to look at Mag. “Pay now, or prepare to get punched!”
“Father, my look is very angry, right?” Amy asked, full of anticipation, as she maintained her posture.
Soooo cute! Mag felt that his heart had melted down, but seeing the anticipation all over her face, he had to refrain from laughing and nod his head. “Yes, super angry.”
Amy put her hands down and said happily, “Then leave the mission of collecting money to Amy from now on. I’m sure to do a good job.”
Smiling, Mag nodded. “Okay, I’ll leave it to you then. Oh, and Father will show you how to look angrier when I have time.” He didn’t turn Amy down, but her look was so cute now, so he had to carefully teach her sometime, or the customers would not be squelched.
Then, Amy pestered Mag for a story. He told her the story of “The Little Match Girl”. Amy listened with great interest, though Mag added and omitted some things.
By the end of the story, Amy asked with great anticipation, “Father, is the roast goose really that delicious?”
Mag nodded. “Yeah, I suppose.” But then he felt something was wrong. The point of the story was the roast goose in the kitchen cupboard?
The story was over. They leaned on the counter, a little bored, their chins lying on the back of their hands, oblivious to everything around them. The looks on their faces were surprisingly in sync.
Mag had known that the start would not be easy, but he hadn’t expected that nobody would come for a whole morning. Only two demon kids had looked inside for a while from outside the glass window.
At noon, Amy turned to look at Mag and said, “Father, Amy’s hungry.”
Mag nodded, smiling. “I’ll go prepare lunch.” Then he went into the kitchen. It couldn’t be helped; he couldn’t make himself stand outside and yell and invite customers in.
As for the attitude towards customers, he had more or less decided when he was sitting there. In respect of user experience, he knew even more than many who owned restaurants, though it was his first time being an owner; after all, he had tried so many restaurants in his previous life.
A warm attitude might make people think that they were valued, but those who didn’t like talking might feel uncomfortable, and a condescending and cold attitude would definitely leave a terrible impression on most customers. Going too far was as bad as not going far enough.
Besides, his restaurant was relying on Amy and him only. Amy would have done more than enough if she could collect money properly, and receiving customers was naturally his responsibility. So, with regard to his attitude towards them, after he summed up his experience and also considered the current situation of the restaurant, he decided to follow three words: kindness, distance, equality.
Kindness was the basic respect that should be shown to the customers. It would make them feel good before eating. As for distance, it was because Mag wanted to increase efficiency, and because he had to make the customers who didn’t like to be received overzealously feel comfortable. And equality would be shown to all species. Mag felt that anyone who chose to eat in his restaurant was his customer: no matter the species, he would treat them all the same.
When Mag had just readied the ingredients for two plates of Yangzhou fried rice and the rice, the small bells on the door rang…