He took a bite of his sandwich to cover his odd behavior. Bella flashed him a puzzled look as he ate, he brushed it off with a shrug. The sandwich was amazing as usual.
“Mmm, that’s great!” Zerrin praised. He’d never had such bread, nutty, yeasty and perfect. He’d have to be careful not to let anyone else know she made bread. With her skills a baker might try to lure her away.
Bella laughed. “I’m glad you like it.”
Zerrin nodded not bothering to speak. Talk could distract from his sandwich. His gaze caught on the chips. Reluctant to give up his sandwich, he nevertheless set it down so he could take a bite of the chip.
Zerrin closed his eyes as the salty, potatoey goodness teased his taste buds. “So good. You can make these for me whenever you want.”
Bella shook her head. “I have to say for a king you’re pretty easy to please.”
The images of other ways Bella could please him filled his mind. Zerrin shook his head to dispel them. He had a strict ‘don’t maul the servants policy’ and he wouldn’t break it even for his beautiful chef.
“Is there dessert?”
From her pocket Bella pulled out some familiar chocolate candies. “These are my last ones. I didn’t know if the princes would be around or not.”
“Hand them over!”
Bella gave a conspiring look around before dropping the wrapped packages onto Zerrin’s palm.
Not bothering to finish his lunch, Zerrin unrolled a ball and popped it into his mouth. “Mmm.” The flavor of chocolate and something fruity hit his tongue. “You did something different.”
“Yes,” she gave him a delighted smile as if he were particularly bright to have figured it out. “I added some raspberry liqueur.”
Zerrin didn’t know what a raspberry was but he appreciated the flavor. “It’s good.”
“I’m glad you like it. I’m going to try putting in some dried fruit in the next batch.”
“Feel free to bring me samples to try,” Zerrin offered.
“I’ll do that.”
A particularly high-pitched scream had Bella looking back out the window. “They do seem to be having a good time.”
“Yes they do. Your family fits very well with mine.” Zerrin worried for a moment if he should’ve kept back the words.