Whoops! I didn’t realise this was cross-posted to LJ. Sorry!
Nakamura was very distracted when his secretary buzzed him. The young man had been recommended by Master Karuzaki’s father, who knew Nakamura was unable to control himself around women. Instead, he had given the man a young boy pretty enough not to be a threat to men, and charming enough to put the ladies at ease. It helped that the boy was not attracted to women.
“Nakamura-san, the Young Master is here,” the man’s dulcet tones never failed to irritate Nakamura because it reminded him that the person speaking was a boy and not a woman.
“Send him in, Tokei,” Nakamura stood up as the door opened.
“Hello Nakamura,” the Young Master walked in, shaking his hand.
“Good afternoon, Young Master. To what pleasure do I owe this visit?”
“Enough with the formal talk, Nakamura. You met her yesterday, what can you tell me?”
“You mean Miss Ishihara? She’s a very bright and subservient young lady. From her conversation alone, I can guarantee that she’ll be an asset to you,” Nakamura began, but the Young Master raised his hand.
“You know that’s not what I meant,” his voice was low.
“She’s not reserved, but warm and eager to serve. Miss Ishihara is also a professional, Young Master. If you were looking for a master courtesan I think you could not have found a better companion,” Nakamura said.
“What about Mrs Jiwo?”
“She agrees with my assessment and says that Ms Ishihara is a quick study and has a sweet tooth.”
“Good then. Now then, Nakamura, did you have sex with her?”
“No, Young Master!” His strong reaction was enough to convince the Young Master that he was telling the truth, but his blush hinted at something else.
“Who did you have in your office then, Nakamura?”
“Um… Rumi,” the man turned red.
“You know I don’t approve of your office dalliances. Either transfer her out or get her married asap,” the Young Master stood up to indicate the interview was at an end.
“I understand,” when the door closed, Nakamura sank into his chair with a sigh of relief.
“You heard him, Rumi,” Nakamura looked down to where the office lady was sitting as quietly as she could under the desk, her blouse in disarray. The episode had taken less than ten minutes.
The scent of strawberries greeted him as soon as the elevator doors opened. He closed his eyes and raised his head as he stepped out, recognising the scent immediately. Strawberry shortcake, he thought just as two voices echoed each other.
“Okaerinasai, goshujin-sama!” he opened his eyes to see Mrs Jiwo bowing as usual, with a dark-haired maiden next to her.
“Good evening, Mrs Jiwo. And this is…?” he knew who she was of course, but a gentleman always watched his manenrs.
“This is Sayaka Ishihara from the Agency, Young Master,” Mrs Jiwo raised herself and brought Sayaka forward.
“Welcome home, Young Master,” Sayaka’s voice was suitably docile and polite… yet professional.
Her voice and tone struck him dumb. Of all his maids, he had never heard one who had managed to combine all three traits as well as she did. Perhaps his gamble had paid off, after all.
“Tha… thank you,” he replied softly. Before he spoke further, his nose caught a warning scent. “Who’s minding the oven, Mrs Jiwo?” he asked.
“Oh no!” Sayaka managed to execute a short bow before taking to the kitchen. With any luck, perhaps the shortcake could be saved. He doubted it though.
“Professional, Mrs Jiwo?” he raised an eyebrow at the elder maid.
“Much more than I could say for your other choices, Young Master. She is not a klutz,” one of the perks of being an old family servant was that you could generally treat your charges like the children you still thought they were.
Her comment made the Young Master laugh. With a nod, the Young Master let Mrs Jiwo lead him to the kitchen, where they could inspect the shortcake.