Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
[Extra] The Decisive Battle of Birthdays Part 2
“Birthday, huh? A celebration…”
Rick was at the restaurant he worked at. During lunch period, the restaurant would close for a while so Rick and the other employees could spend their well-deserved break.
Rick cupped his head in his hand while he was helping himself to his lunch. A pencil and a notepad were placed on the table before him.
As he was busily lost in his thoughts, someone called out to him, “Rick, what are you doing? Have you eaten?”
“Oh? Yes, I have,” he answered.
From behind, a white arm reached out towards the table and picked up his notepad.
Rick turned around and made efforts to take it back, but he was unable to, since he was still seated at the time while the other person was standing.
“Hey! Hayden, give it back~”
Rick called out in distress and tried his best to reach for his notepad, which stubbornly remained clutched in Hayden’s hands.
Hayden started reading the notepad aloud, “Strawberry cake, chocolate cake, cherry tart… What’s this? You wanna open a cake shop?”
Rick denied, “No, I do not!”
When he finally reached the notepad, Rick snatched it back and held it close to his chest. Hayden brushed his wavy bangs and subsequently asked, “Then, what is it?”
“I’m just… planning to make a birthday cake. And I’m weighing my options.”
“Birthday cake, huh. Is it for your birthday? Or someone else’s?”
Hayden laughed, the snake’s long tongue was on full display as he did. He had no ears, so it was hard to tell what kind of beastman he was at first glance. But his white skin, long arms, and tall, hunchbacked body all indicated that he was a snake beastman. Even Rick, who didn’t meet other beastmen that often, immediately recognized this fact.
“No, it’s not for my birthday. It’s for…”
“Hmm? Why are you being shy all of a sudden? Come on, you can confide in this senior of yours.”
Hayden was a supervisor who had worked here much longer than Rick. They started working together after the squirrel graduated from high school, which was three years ago now.
As Hayden was older, he thought of Rick as his own younger brother and took care of the squirrel in any way he could. Although, the snake could really be a tease at times.
“It’s for my lover’s birthday…” Rick replied, finally able to say it.
“Oh, I see~ It’s for that handsome teddy bear of yours,” Hayden teased.
“Well… To call him a teddy bear is a little…”
Right after Rick started dating Davis, the squirrel had soon filled in Hayden about it, saying that he had recently begun dating a bear beastman. Even Hayden himself could spot there was something different about him before this revelation, as he noticed the subtle changes in his behavior ever since the beginning of last spring. The snake thought that something must have happened, hence he asked the squirrel about it.
However, Hayden might not have expected Davis to be a large beastman. It was hard for Rick to tell his senior about his lover anyway, so he had been quiet about it at first.
“We have decided to celebrate our birthdays on the same day. I’ll be in charge of dinner, but… I can’t decide what I should put on the menu…!”
Rick clenched his fists, troubled that his mind was completely blank. Then, he instantly realized that his notepad was getting crumpled in his hand, so he hurriedly straightened it back.
“First of all, the cake. But I can’t even decide on that at all…”
“So you have no idea what cake you should make, huh.”
With a grunt, Rick buried his face in his hands.
Hayden only hummed in response and crossed his arms. He sat down in the chair where Rick was settled earlier.
“Hayden, you’re popular, right?”
“Hm? Yeah, you can say that.”
Hayden was very popular. Although he was a medium-sized beastman, he was as tall as a large beastmen, albeit hunchbacked. He had monolid eyes and was often praised by the patrons for his “cool beauty”.
“Then, if you were to hold a birthday party, what would you have on the menu? What do you think would be right for such an occasion?”
Looking at Rick with his arms crossed, Hayden opened his mouth to answer.
“I can’t cook, so I’ll just go to a nice place for dinner and give that special person a present, period.”
“Go to a nice place…” Rick pondered on the proposition. “Nah, I don’t think I would be able to afford the fancy food there.”
He let out a long sigh. Rick was about to jot it down, but in the end, he realized that he couldn’t.
“But I don’t think there’s a “right” menu for a birthday party,” Hayden suggested.
Rick didn’t expect such an answer from Hayden. He raised his chin to see the snake shrugging at him.
“What does Mr. Teddy Bear like to eat?” Hayden asked.
“Huh? He likes to eat…”
What does Davis, the Mr. Teddy Bear in question, like to eat? Rick began to think, and a lot of things came to his mind.
The foods that Davis enjoyed included Rick’s homemade sandwiches, the nut stew, and the mushroom-filled, braised hamburger. He also liked salmon pie and simple pickles. He preferred something sweet as well. Every time he ate one of those, he would declare it was delicious with a bright smile on his face.
“Why don’t you just make whatever comes to your head? If there are many types of dishes he likes, then he would have lots to eat at his birthday party.”
“Oh…” Rick seriously considered the suggestion.
“It doesn’t have to be a fancy menu. Mr. Teddy Bear would be happy enough to eat the food that he likes. The same can be said for the cake.”
Davis had always liked his cooking since the beginning. Thus, if Rick himself cooked the food that Davis liked to eat, the bear would definitely be happy.
Rick’s fluffy tail regained its vigor. It stood up and puffed in excitement.
“I see, so that’s it…!”
As he watched Rick nodding in understanding and frantically scribbling on the notepad, Hayden smiled, thinking how obvious it was that the squirrel was new to something like this.
“Thank you, Hayden…! I’m glad that I asked you.”
There was probably no need for Rick to thank Hayden, since the older beastman was the one who involved himself in the first place. But when he saw Rick bowing to him without any regard for that, Hayden relaxed his eyes. In this way, the snake’s eyes didn’t look as scary as they usually did.
“You can come to me for advice anytime,” Hayden kindly offered.
“I will, hehe.”
Rick nodded with a smile on his face, which was a complete change in expression from the one he had early on. In response, Hayden patted Rick’s head.
Suddenly, a third voice chimed in, “Rick, Hayden is usually a pain in the ass, but I see that he’s being helpful to you this time. I bet he’s trying to act like a kind-hearted big brother to you.”
“Whaa? Stay out of this, you rabbit geezer.”
The voice that came in belonged to Colin, a rabbit beastman who was the owner and chef of this restaurant. Colin and Hayden had known each other for a long time, which explained the casual tone in the latter’s manner of speaking. However, Rick thought that calling him a geezer was a bit too much.
Rick opened his mouth, “Umm, I think… I would be happy if I had an older brother like Hayden…”
From the kitchen, Colin looked up at Hayden, who was glaring back at him menacingly, whereas Rick was simply being honest with his feelings. The rabbit only let out a laugh.
“I see. Well, good for you, Hayden.”
After a few moments of gritting his teeth in annoyance, Hayden stood up, as if he was getting back to work. He bumped Rick on the shoulder and whispered, “I hope it will go well with Mr. Teddy Bear.”
“I hope so too…!” Rick beamed. “Now that it’s all set, I need to make two or three separate trips to buy meat, fish, vegetables, and other necessary ingredients.”
“What, can Mr. Teddy Bear eat that much?”
He excitedly nodded, causing Hayden to tilt his head musingly. Rick chuckled whilst scratching his head, reminded that his lover was a bear after all.
Want to support the TL and get some artwork too? Go support Whistle on Kofi!