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941 We Still Dont Know What Happened That Night 1

 Lapis scanned the room curiously. Come to think of it, this was her first time entering Rhode's room in Grandia. It wasn't as luxurious as she expected and could even be considered rather simple. An elegant table, chairs, wardrobe, and a thick fur carpet made up most of the decorations in the room. The only striking thing was the large, five-meter-wide bed. In addition to some ornamental plants, that was all the things in the room.

"What's wrong, Lapis?"

Lapis turned around and looked at him anxiously.

"Ah... Nothing's wrong... Nothing, Sir Rhode."

"Come to think of it, is anything the matter for dropping by now?"

Rhode swept a glance at the nervous Lapis. He casually pulled out a chair and sat opposite her with crossed arms. He didn't feel strange about her behavior. Although she seemed like a mouse shaking in front of a cat, this was how she had always been. If she were to behave as calmly and steadily as Marlene, he would be more suspicious. Lapis bit her lip and pondered for a few moments before finally mustering her courage.

"Erm... Erm... Sir Rhode!"

"Hmm?"

Her voice was so loud at the end that it startled him. Then, she reached into the folds of her clothes for a small basket and slid it across the table to him.

"T-This is the biscuit that I baked!"

"Biscuit?"

Rhode couldn't figure out what was happening. Could it be that she was mimicking Valentine's Day? But Valentine's Day was months ago. Although there was a similar holiday in this world, it would only take place at the end of autumn which was still a few months away. What exactly was she planning to do, bringing out a basket of biscuits?

"Ah. T-This... Yes! I heard from Miss Canary about the food storage problem while marching, so I made these biscuits. By the way, I even used alchemy to modify them. They turned out great after some experiments, so I would like you to try, Sir Rhode. I wonder if... you'll like it?"

Lapis was so nervous that she stuttered her words but Rhode finally understood her intention. He waved his hand casually at the sight of her almost bursting into tears.

"In other words, these biscuits are for me?"

"Y-Yes, Sir Rhode. I've also prepared some red tea..."

Lapis reached for the exquisite tea set inside the spatial bracelet and laid them on the table. Then, she poured tea into the teacup in a fluster. Rhode had to admit that Lapis was too tragic to look at compared to professionals like Angelina, Agatha, or Marlene. The way that Lapis poured tea lacked the elegance of nobles and even gave an illusion of her adding a drug into it, especially after she mixed up the ratio of milk and sugar.

I suppose this can be drunk... Right?

Rhode twitched his brow slightly. Even though he wasn't a noble and didn't particularly enjoy having tea, he had his fair share of different flavored teas with Marlene, Lize, Angelina, and Celestina, who treated tea as important as their lives. The pure tea and milk teas that he drank had normal colors. But this... was green in color.

Is this really 'red' tea?

It turned blue after milk is added?

What kind of chemical reaction is that?

I won't die... Right?

Since she prepared everything for him with kind intentions, it wouldn't be nice of him to request for more. Anyway, he wasn't in battle now, so he didn't need to be so anxious and solemn. Moreover, even though Lapis seemed panicky, the things that she brought seemed reliable. Also, he was really confident in his Void Dragon attributes. No matter what, he should be fine after drinking it.

Rhode lifted the cup, took a sip of the 'red' tea that had turned 'deep blue', and grabbed a biscuit just in case he needed it. This was fairly simple to understand. One would need a piece of candy to cancel out the bitterness of Chinese medicine. In this case, the biscuit was his candy.

"Hmm?"

But to his surprise, the tea wasn't as strange as he imagined. On the contrary, it was oddly rich and even though it didn't seem like red tea, the taste was almost the same. Besides, he didn't feel unwell and this proved that it was just a pure cup of red tea (despite the totally different look). Rhode let his guard down and began savoring the tea and biscuits.

"Hmm... It's not bad at all. Although the tea doesn't look similar to red tea, I didn't expect you to be talented in this, Lapis. I thought you weren't interested in anything else other than alchemy. I'm really surprised."

"Phew..."

Lapis heaved a long sigh of relief as though she had accomplished a mission and stole a glance at him. Everything is good. As long as I continue... there won't be any issues with my plan when that moment comes.

This was the first time Lapis relaxed herself entirely but at this moment...

"Leader, Anne is back!"

The door swung open and Anne appeared by the doorway.

"Anne?!"

Lapis jumped from her seat as though she was jolted by an electric shock. Anne blinked and looked at Lapis curiously.

"Lapis, why are you here? This is the first time Anne sees you outside of the workshop. Why? Did Leader make you do anything fun?"

"No, I... I... was only..."

Lapis was at her wits' end. She totally didn't expect the situation to turn out this way. According to her plan, she would be the only one spending this perfect night with Rhode. She didn't foresee anyone joining them and now... this was often the case as theory separated itself from reality, wasn't it?

At this moment, Rhode waved his hand with an airy gesture.

"Lapis made some biscuits for me. Do you want to have some?"

"Of course!"

Eating, playing, and sleeping were the three biggest funs for Anne. Her curiosity piqued the instant she heard that there was food made by Lapis. She scuttled for a chair, grabbed a piece of biscuit, and was about to throw it into her mouth when suddenly, Lapis came to her senses and was startled.

"Wait!"

"Hmm?"

But it was too late.

Anne chewed the biscuit and looked at her curiously. Lapis gaped but didn't say a word.

"N-Nothing... Anne, do you like the taste of the biscuit...?"

"Yes, it's delicious. Anne likes it and didn't expect that you could bake, Lapis."

Anne grabbed another biscuit and munched it. Lapis sighed helplessly and gave up stopping her. Since she had already eaten, it didn't matter if she ate one or ten because the effects would still be the same. If she knew that this would happen, she could have chosen to bake a cake instead.

As Lapis pondered in silence, Anne continued to savor the tasty biscuits while Rhode casually sipped the tea in his own world. But... Lapis realized that some troubles were ahead. She lowered her head and her gaze drifted around the teacup before her. She suddenly broke out in a thin layer of sweat and not only that, but her breathing also hastened... She was clearly aware that the effects were slowly taking place.

This wasn't a potion targeted at Rhode. She had been customizing equipment and potions for a long time, so she was aware that even if she were to create a 'charm' potion, it wouldn't be too effective on him. As a researcher, this level of rationale was still present. Therefore, she had no intention of creating a potion that would make Rhode fall in love with her because she knew that it wouldn't work. So... She modified the effects of the potion instead.

She added a potion to the red tea and biscuit that could enhance the attractiveness of the person who consumed either of them. This way, as long as both parties were of opposite genders and consumed either the tea or biscuit, they would be attracted to each other. All in all, it was a potion that could increase one's charm to gain a favorable impression. But this time, the reason why Lapis created this potion was to break the obstacle in her mind. She knew that under normal circumstances she wouldn't have the courage to confess her love to him, which explained why she came up with this idea. Once she was attracted to him to the point of no restrain, she would then dare to bravely speak her mind. Of course, this potion was unlike a 'charm' potion that could twist and change one's will. On the contrary, it was a potion to 'enhance charm', which wouldn't be negated by Rhode. It was only through this way that she could reduce the failure rate of her confession. After all, she was clearly aware that she couldn't compete with the other beauties and be high up in the rankings. And yet, she was unwilling to not try at all...

All in all, this was no different from spitting out the truth after having wine, but Lapis saw and resolved this problem from a researcher's point of view... Frankly speaking, if she knew that this would happen, she would rather chug a few bottles of beer and make herself drunk.

But now, the effects were taking place.

She sharply sensed that Rhode's presence was slowly becoming bigger, taller, and much more attractive. If Anne weren't here, she would have used this opportunity to confess. But now... How could she say something like this!

While Lapis's mind was in complete chaos, two young ladies knocked on the door and entered the room.

"Rhode, do you have time... Hmm? Lapis?"

Why did this happen?

The corners of Lapis's mouth twitched as she turned to the two young ladies.

"Good evening, Miss Marlene and Miss Lize..."