Tiararose was shocked when she heard this announced.
“Wh-why is Liliarge one of the special judges!? And she’s being introduced as my friend…!”
“As you might expect from a friend of Tiararose, she is very cute. I have never seen an animal like this before. Perhaps she is closer to a fairy!”
The announcer continued without noticing Tiararose’s reaction. ‘It’s fine’ Pheles said with a laugh.
Tiararose looked to the side and saw that Pheles’s team was right next to theirs.
“Lilia and I decided to go around and see the rest of Marineforest. If she is known as being a friend of yours, it will make things a lot easier, considering her appearance. Don’t you agree?”
And that’s why he wanted to present her to the public on this occasion. Pheles declared. Indeed. It was probably the right decision.
“That may be… But I am hardly worthy of being called Queen Lilia’s friend. Of course, I do think of her as one.”
“I would be very happy if you were her friend. Lilia has been lonely for so long.”
Pheles requested it directly.
“It’s an honor to hear you say that. I too would like to continue being friends with Queen Lilia.”
“King Pheles! Don’t forget about me!”
“Ah, the maiden with the power of Holy Prayer. I heard from Lilia that you purified the bracelet. Thank you.”
Pheles smiled and bowed when Akari raised her hand. And then he turned to Olivia and asked that they all be friends to the queen.
“Hey, Pheles. Stop talking to the enemy team. We’ve got sweets to make.”
“…Keith. I am trying to talk about Lilia here… But it’s true that we don’t have much time. The three-hour time limit will be over soon.”
And so he and Tiararose both returned to their cooking.
Tiararose’s hands began to move immediately. They moved as if their purpose for existing was to make sweets. Pheles was impressed.
“The ladies team is amazing… We cannot lose to them.”
“Then hurry up and get moving. Aren’t you going to make those cupcakes that Lilia wanted to eat? I mean, Pheles. Can you even make them?”
“Uh…I’m sure I’ll manage it.”
Pheles grinned and insisted it would work out. Keith and Grail just sighed.
“Hey, brother… You are much too rough with that.”
“Damn it. That’s not what I was trying to do…”
Hartnights and Sirius were doing so badly that the audience watched on in horror. It wouldn’t have mattered much if they were commoners. But the two were royal guests from Lapis Lazuli. Nothing could be allowed to happen.
But they decided to watch in silence and hope for the best…
“Ahhhh. It got crushed again…”
As he didn’t know how much pressure to apply, the thing that Hartnights was holding was smushed in his hands. It was a bright pink color that had missed its chance to be a macaron.
As for the meringue part that would make the base, it was not too burned…and tolerably pretty. The ganache was also very rich. Sirius tasted it and it was delicious.
And so Hartnights and Sirius believed that the macarons would turn out just fine. But at the very end, during the process that should have been the easiest, that is, putting the ganache inside of the meringue, Hartnights showed off his typical clumsiness.
His fingers had applied too much pressure and many macarons were squashed.
“…I’ve never done this before, so don’t blame me. That being said, I’m surprised that you’re good at this, Sirius.”
“I think anyone would look good next to you, brother.”
While Hartnights continued to squish the things, Sirius continued to make perfect macarons.
“This is my first time in Marineforest, so I cannot embarrass myself. …Besides, I want Tiararose to eat my macarons.”
Sirius said as he set three especially nice ones away in a separate box.
“Hey, hey. Princess Tiara. Lady Olivia.”
“What is it, Akari?”
Akari had finished making the candy decorations and she was now staring at something. As Tiararose was concentrating on decorating the cake, Olivia answered for her.
Akari pointed at the area where the solo contestants were busy working. They were very quick with their hands. They were spreading cream over danish crusts and adding fruits and even Tiararose’s flowers on top.
‘That looks so good.’ Olivia muttered without thinking. She quickly became speechless.
The man she was looking at was wearing a mask. Perhaps he did not want to be recognized, but the black mask drew a lot of attention.
“Who could he be? In spite of that mask, the danish cake he is making looks really good.”
“I agree with you on that. …But, I don’t think that mask was in the game. Surely he cannot be anyone important?”
Olivia declared that he could not be a main or sub-character. And if he was a nameless mob character, then Olivia did not care at all about him.
Of course, if it turned out that he was a new capture target, she would have been very excited.
“Well, you’re right. He can’t be anyone important. But that looks so good. I would be so happy if I could eat something like that for breakfast.”
“Yes, that’s true. Maybe he has a store somewhere that we could visit. We should check the market later.”
Akari and Olivia talked about how much they looked forward to this. Then Tiara called them.
“Help me if you have nothing to do! We have to make as many cakes as possible to feed all of these people. Akari, you put the cream on the sponge cakes. I will decorate them. Olivia, you add the candy decorations on top. When you are done, put the chocolate ribbons around them.”
Tiararose told them that this was no time to worry about the other contestants.
She was usually very calm, but now she was lively and active.
It was just as the three of them had finished their fifth cake that the bell rang, signaling that time was up.