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East Asian Urban Fantasy Teens & Young Adult

Mari woke up at dawn that morning, had a fast breakfast of dry toast and water, and walked around town, looking for windows with “Help Wanted” signs up.

Months ago, Mari’s father, Zenni, got laid off from his job, and since then, Zenni and Mari’s older brother, Koji worked part-time, but things were just barely going well for the family, and Mari was thinking about a Summer Job to help keep the family’s heads above water until Zenni got a job.

The last place she looked was the laundry house bordering with the eastern forest, when the Laundromat Owner said he wasn’t looking for help, Mari wanted to give up when a “Help Wanted: Apply in east forest” flyer with a pointing arrow slammed in Mari’s face.

After a couple dozen paces, Mari saw the path split into 3 paths. The flyer waved in Mari’s hand, and when she looked at the flyer, the pointing arrow was facing towards the path on the left.

Continuing onwards, Mari stumbled upon a Noodle Shop.

“A restaurant?? HERE???” Mari asked herself. “How....convenient.”

The sign on the Shop read “Fox Udon”.

Mari opened the door and stepped inside. As soon as she set foot in the dining area, a Fox flew over to her from the Kitchen Area. “Welcome to Fox Udon. How can I help you?”

Mari slumped against the door, barely conscious. When she rubbed her eyes, she found herself hunched over the bar on a stool, being supported by a Fox while another Fox looked at her with concern.

“Are you alright, dear? You almost fainted!” said the Fox.

“Did you just talk?” Mari asked.

“You seem confused, but to be fair, it’s not every day you find a talking Fox, I guess. My name is Konna, my husband and I run this peaceful little Noodle Shop together, and we’re looking for help.”

“Well, I’m looking for a job. What do you need me to do?” Mari asked.

“We need a server to wait and bus tables. We’ll pay you 5 Gil an hour and you can have anything you want on the Menu for lunch and dinner for free. How does that sound?” asked Konna.

“Sounds great! I’m only working the summer until Dad finds a new job, anyway!” Mari answered.

“You’re hired! Can you start tomorrow?” Konna said.

“Sure! I can’t believe I got my first summer job on the first day of Summer! I’ll do my best!”

Mari woke up at dawn that morning, had a fast breakfast of dry toast and water, and walked around town, looking for windows with “Help Wanted” signs up.

Mari’s father, Zenni, got laid off from his job, and, Zenni and Mari’s older brother, Koji worked part-time since, although things were just barely going well, and Mari was thinking about a Summer Job to help keep the family’s heads above water until Zenni got a job.

The last place she looked was a laundromat bordering with the eastern forest, when the Laundromat Owner wasn’t looking for help, Mari wanted to stop until a “Help Wanted: Apply in east forest” flyer with a pointing arrow slammed in Mari’s face.

When Mari got home, she saw the family seated at the table ready to eat dinner.

“Hi, Mari! How was your day?” Minako asked.

“Great, actually! I got a job at a Restaurant!” Mari answered.

“That’s wonderful news, Mari! I’m proud of you!” Minako said.

The next day, Mari awoke at dawn to get ready for the first day of her new job. After a quick breakfast of toast and eggs, Mari said “I’m going to my job!” to her family.

“Good luck!” Zenni called out.

On her walk, Mari’s friend Koko passed by.

“Hey, Mari!”

“Hey, Koko! I got a job!” Mari cheered.

“Congratulations!” Koko cheered back.

“Thank you! I must go, I’m on my way to my job now!”

When Mari finally got to Fox Udon, she closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and opened the door. Konna smiled and said, “Welcome to your first day on the job, Mari! This is my husband, Shiga! He’s the chef at this restaurant!” Konna said.

“Hello, Mari, nice to meet you!” Shiga said.

“Nice to meet you too!” Mari said.

”Your job will be to wait, and bus tables and help me cook if we’re very busy.” Shiga explained.

Shiga handed Mari a notepad.

A man and a woman walked in, obviously a couple on a date.

“Hi, welcome to Fox Udon! Can I take your order?” Mari asked.

“I’ll have the Pork Broth Ramen with Boiled Egg and Fish Cake!” said the man.

“And I’ll have the Tofu Miso Ramen with Spiced Cabbage!”

“Let me write that down!”

“Welcome to Fox Udon. May I take your order?” Mari asked.

Mari had just delivered the order slips to the kitchen when a Tanuki walked in. “Can I have the Shrimp Tempura Udon?”

“Sure! Shrimp Tempura Udon...got it!”

The entire rest of the day was Mari going back and forth saying “Welcome to Fox Udon! How can I help you?”, “Let me write that down!” “How’s everything tasting?” and “Thank you for dining at Fox Udon! Come back again sometime!”

The next day, when Mari went in to work, the restaurant had many customers. When she entered the kitchen, Shiga said "How would you like to earn a promotion? This cupboard is where we keep the broth cubes, this shelf in the fridge is where we keep the vegetables. This is where we keep the noodles, and this is where we keep the eggs and fish! I hope you know how to cook!"

A two-tailed Cat walked into the restaurant.

"Welcome to Fox Udon! How can I help you?" Mari asked.

"I'll have Shrimp Tempura Ramen with extra fish cake!" said the two-tailed Cat.

"Shrimp Tempura Ramen with extra Fish Cake....No problem!"

In the kitchen, Mari washed her hands, then grabbed three shrimps from the fridge. She grabbed some bamboo skewers and delicately pierced the shrimps with the skewers, taking extreme caution not to stab herself accidentally. Mari then put some water on to boil, and while the water was heating up, she prepared some Tempura batter for the shrimps and dipped the shrimps in it, then put the shrimp in the fryer. The Shrimp had been done just at the same time the water was boiling, so Mari put Ramen Noodles into the water to boil.

As that happened, Shiga helped by slicing scallions and a Fish Cake Roll.

Mari put the broth cubes and the Ramen in the bowl, Shiga got the put in the scallions and fish cake, Mari grabbed the Tempura Shrimp, and put the bowl on a serving tray.

"Here's your entree! Enjoy!"

"Thank you! That's service!" said the Two-Tailed Cat "Mmmm...Delicious!"

At that moment, her crush Kento walked into the restaurant.

"Hey, Mari. Working here now?" He said.

"Yeah, so what can I do for you, Kento?" Mari asked.

"I'll have Curry Udon!" Kento said, offering money for his meal.

"Curry Udon coming up!" Mari declared.

Mari put the Udon in the boiler, then got to chopping Scallions. She then put the Scallions and Beef chunks into a skillet to sautee. As the Beef was sauteeing, the girl put a Curry block into an empty bowl. She then put the Noodles, boiling water, scallions and sauteed beef into the bowl and stirred it all together with a chopstick.

"Here! Curry Udon!" Mari said.

"Thanks, Mari!" Kento said.

"You're welcome." Mari said.

At the end of the day, the girl slid down the wall of the restaurant. The Foxes checked on her.

"Mari, are you alright?" Konna asked.

"I...I can do ANYTHING!" Mari said with a laugh.

June 30, 2021 03:45

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1 comment

Megan Oliver
23:57 Jul 12, 2021

Hi there - this is very unique and i enjoyed it. I would recommend editing your work as I believe you have pasted the same passage twice (unless this is deliberate - in which case ignore this!)

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