Lady Anri’s Diet
Time to celebrate! Still pitching our protagonist!
There’s a new serialisation that’s going to have an entirely different, title, protagonist, and general perspective; “Evil God at Random – A Fairly Average Evil God Girl and a Summoned Hero”. It’s going to go public by the twenty-fourth of October.
Also, I know I just went on about still pitching for the protagonist, but this version’s going to have a few revisions to Anri’s main character status.
I’ll use this opportunity for another announcement. I’ve been told that, since it’s been over a year since the initial publication of Volume One, it’s a-okay to post the store-limited short stories. Which I’m about to do.
I found myself face-to-face with great misfortune. It wouldn’t have been far-fetched to denote it as a tragedy, either.
“My stomach… It’s… Just Squishy… Uh-oh.”
I attempted to assuage my worries by giving my gut a light pinch, only to realise, and with utter horror and despair, that it was all too easy for me to grab a whole chunk between my fingers. If I had to find some sort of comparison that might adequately describe the way I felt, it would probably be something along the lines of realising that you were out of toilet paper while you were on the can.
The assumption I’d had, namely that I wouldn’t lead any sort of luxurious lifestyle when I came to this world, had led to my own negligence. The general lack of physical activity on my part had been my downfall.
I couldn’t even recall any event in recent memory where I’d become that active. Actually, that might have been an understatement. I’ve barely even stepped outside the dungeon, not since Tena had come here.
If I took all of that into account, it certainly wasn’t difficult to imagine why I’d gotten fat – pardon, I misspoke. I’d just put on a teeny-tiny bit of weight, that was all. Regardless, now that I’d finally taken notice, I really had no excuse. I had to take some counter-measures. I still considered myself a fine young maiden at heart, even if that wasn’t always apparent.
“Maybe I should just start wearing loose robes. Maybe no one’ll notice…”
Temptation whispered sweet words into my head, but I did my best to ignore it. This really wasn’t a matter of being noticed or not; this was a matter of pride. A maiden’s pride.
“Exercise is such a bore, though…”
True, that much I agreed with – no, stop. That was close. I couldn’t give in to the temptation. I steeled my resolve, my mind completely set on seeing this through to the end.
◆ ◆ ◆
There were two specific ways, I thought, which would help me pull through this new dieting plan.
The reason people got fat in the first place – sorry, misspoke again. The reason people put on a little weight could be traced back to the idea that some people took in more calories than they could burn off. Whatever remained in excess would turn into these sorry clumps of flesh that would stick to your body. Following that strain of logic, dieting could be divided into two rather broad definitions. One could either focus on burning away more calories, or one could try and tone down their calorie intake.
“Exercise is a definite no-go.”
It only took me two seconds to give up on the former. I’d never been the type of person who moved around much. It didn’t really matter how desperate I was to shave off the extra weight; forcing myself to dive into the deep end and start exercising on the spot was practically impossible. There was also another much more fundamental factor that played into all of this: spending all of my time holed up in a dungeon put a bit of a hamper on any exercise plans.
I could therefore assume that the whole exercise idea had to be rejected. It definitely wasn’t just because of how mind-numbingly tedious the whole process was, no sir. That was something I would stand by to my dying breath.
Well then, what about my second option?
As far as I was concerned, the idea of whittling down on the calories in my meals was much more doable, at least when compared to the alternative. I wasn’t planning to overstep the limits of what I could handle, of course. It wasn’t like I was about to start fasting or restricting how much I should eat, not at all. I planned on changing my menu to something more veggie-inclusive, and possibly eating fewer carbohydrates.
Yep, that sounded just good enough to work.
“Lady Anri! Food’s ready!”
“I’ll be there in a minute.”
I’d been thinking well into dinnertime, it seemed. Tena was already calling for me. I washed my hands in the bathroom, then headed for the dining hall. Dinner had already been laid out on the table.
I was petrified when I saw what was on the day’s menu. Tena had always shown a sort of knack for home cooking, and most of her dishes were rather simple. You know, stew and the sort. However, for whatever reason, she’d decided to break the norm today and placed – enshrined, rather – an extremely well-proportioned steak on the centre of the table.
Why now? Why, of all times, did she have to pick today to make a whole steak…?
My face almost twitched, but I held myself back and asked Tena about this new ordeal.
“Is it just me, or does the food look a little more high-end than it usually does?”
“It does! It’s just that you’ve been so down lately, Lady Anri. I thought this might cheer you up, so I went ahead and made something just for you, extra-meaty! It took a lot of work.”
Well, she was definitely just being considerate, and that made me happy. Really, it did. But now I couldn’t keep myself from imaging something adorably evil about Tena, as happy as she appeared when I went to pat her on the head.
The dish in front of me, the very thing that was sure to only add to my overly plump problems almost made me sweat rivers.
“Um… Is there something wrong?”
Tena couldn’t help but deliver her question with a rather nervous undertone when she saw how stiff I looked, and how I didn’t even let my hand wander near the food. I could already see it in my head, clear as day. I could already see myself gaining weight from this dish alone. This wasn’t easy for me, but I had to put my foot down and –
“Uh… Am I just being a bother…?”
“No, I was just a little surprised. Didn’t think we’d get to eat something like this. Down the hatch.”
I couldn’t do it. Not with Tena looking up at me like that, not with her eyes tearing up. Telling her that I was on a diet and that I wouldn’t eat this seemed nothing short of needless cruelty. Besides, telling Tena that I was going on a diet sort of felt as if I was already admitting to the world that I’d put on just the tiniest bit of weight. I wanted to avoid that. I wanted to be a bit more nonchalant about the whole thing.
Alright then, I could always start my diet tomorrow. It was just one day off, after all. It wouldn’t change much. Starting tomorrow, I just had to take things more seriously.
You know what, what ended up happening with me and the meat could just stay between us, couldn’t it? But there’s probably just one more thing I had to mention… Tena may or may not have thought that the whole thing made me really happy, so she’d come up with the idea to make steak our go-to main dish. It was a big miscalculation on my part, I had to admit.
Please, just… Just give me a break…
◆ ◆ ◆
I’d been stuck in plenty of binds even since I was chucked into this world. That didn’t mean that I hadn’t made any pleasant experiences, obviously. Among those pleasant experiences was the noticeable lack of that fiendish device that sunk women throughout the world into the deepest throes of despair. Yes indeed, the accursed device we knew as ‘scales’ didn’t even exist in this universe. And, in my humble opinion, any person who had the sheer gall to ask me what bathroom scales even were should fall prey to their reviled machinations.
Anyway. Without bathroom scales, I had no way of measuring the minute fluctuations in weight I might have gone through. Even if I did gain a little weight, I had nothing beyond the scope of my own erroneous calculations to make use of. Which was why I really shouldn’t dwell on the issue.
Plump and round… No. I couldn’t do it. It still gnawed at me.
The very next day, I finally swallowed my shame and asked Tena to stick to meals that would benefit my diet. And so began my dietary struggle.
And there you have it, that ends the first of several special side-stories released with the publicised version of Volume One. I should mention that I wrote four different types of short stories. (It’s the first time I write them out here, though).
The publication of Evil God At Random is about four weeks away, so one short story every week seems sort of fitting. Yeah, I think that’s the pacing I’ll stick to when I upload these.