Act 58: Exciting Opening Preparations
A few days before opening the store in the noble district, Cordelia was preparing for the store opening with Emina, Lara, and Ronnie.
The interior was already complete, and there were no problems with the warehouse. The only thing that they had to do with the exterior was to hang the signboard. Cordelia had been coming here to work every day, so the preparations had progressed considerably.
Cordelia decided that the name of her store would be 『Cordelia’s Fragrance』.
Cordelia had wanted to use the name『Pameradia』or『Ertiga』. The Pameradia fief was known for the quality of its plants and Ertiga was a famous trade city. Therefore, she thought that it would be easier to make a good impression that way, and she never thought about attaching her own name to the store.
However, the ladies in the Magician wing objected to this idea, and the other women also raised their objection towards this soon after.
The name『Pameradia』was too strongly attached to knights, they reasoned. The strength presented might be too much for women, and those who don’t know Cordelia, might end up hating her first. Thus, Cordelia asked them about using the name 『Ertiga』, but they said that a woman’s name might sound more appealing.
(There are stores that are named after people, but I never thought that my store would be named after me.)
She felt embarrassed, but Emina and Lara also agreed with the women in the Magician wing, so she decided to go with their opinion.
Among the things that were said, Cordelia had no choice but to agree with Lara’s, “Even if the adults know about Ojou-sama, they will definitely think about Master if you use the name Pameradia.” Although more people know her name now than in the past, compared to Elvis, Cordelia was still only 『Earl Pameradia’s daughter』. She respected him, but she knew that wasn’t the kind of advertisement she should use for women’s cosmetics.
“Now, pull yourself together… Ronnie and Lara will sort out the goods that arrived yesterday. Emina, I would like you to fill the bottles and tag them.”
“Leave it to us.”
The bottles for the cosmetics were created at a shop that the Master of the magic tool shop had introduced her to. The price went up a bit because of this, but since it was imbued with magic, the bottles were airtight, and they preserved the products for longer. She had the help of the women from the Magician wing when she had framed up the bottles, so the products in these bottles probably lasted longer than any cosmetic products in this kingdom. Lastly, she had added decorations to the bottles, so they were pleasing to look at as well.
She was opening the store because there was a certain percentage of success, but she was still nervous since it was right before opening.
(I’ve done everything I can about the products. Now, for the sales floor.)
When she hyped herself up again, the bell at the door rang.
Kaylie had shown up.
“Go-good morning, Cordelia-sama.”
She was looking down and her voice was as quiet as always, but she seemed less tense than before.
“Good morning, Kaylie-sama. I look forward to working with you today.”
Cordelia tried to smile as softly as she could before returning Kaylie’s greeting.
Trial period, first day.
Cordelia thought it was harsh to make her talk to people on the first meeting, so she decided that the two of them will work today on the first day.
It was the first time that someone other than people from the Pameradia household had entered this store, and she was curious about Kaylie’s opinion, but Kaylie was already overwhelmed, and wasn’t composed enough to look at the interior of the shop.
“First of all, I’ll show you the sales floor.”
Cordelia explained the items in the store to Kaylie, one by one.
The store offered essential oils and balms, as well as cosmetic products such as lotions and emulsions, and bathing products such as soaps and shampoos. If this kingdom had the custom of soaking in bathtubs, then Cordelia could also sell a lot of bath salts and bath bombs, but unfortunately, this kingdom didn’t have such a custom so she only had a few products on the shelf for this category. She wanted to trial foot baths, but it was difficult since she had to remodel her house for that.
“Also, we have small accessories placed here. Women like things like this, so I thought it would be fun for them to look at accessories as well.”
“They’re all… cute… Hmm, this is…?”
“They’re jewellery boxes. I prepared those boxes just in case someone wants to buy our products as gifts.”
She had prepared various jewellery boxes: some were decorated with natural gems and cameos, others only had engraving on the wood, and some were music boxes.
Other than that, she also had potpourri and small plants for decoration. She had put cactus, which she didn’t need, in glass containers and decorated them with colour sand. This plant was rarely seen in this kingdom. She also had nutritional supplements available for houseplants and had packaged them as cute as she could.
She also had corsages, which was introduced to her by Christina, as a commodity and decorations for the shelves.
“You really do think of a lot of things, Cordelia-sama… You have… so many wonderful things here…”
“I didn’t come up with everything. But, it’s a lot of fun to think of things that might make others happy. If others enjoy it, then it’s a wonderful thing.”
She could not have thought of a lot of things if she didn’t have her previous life’s memories, and she couldn’t have produced some products without the help of Elvis and Ronnie. Still, if these results lead to someone smiling, then she was happy.
“I’ll ask you to remember the details of the products later… This is the store’s interior.”
“The products in this store are different from the products in other stores that I’ve seen, and it makes me extremely curious… Hmm, there’s something I want to ask… but, what is that room?”
Kaylie was looking at a room that was separated from the room where Cordelia and Kaylie were in. The lower half of the wall was natural wood, the upper half was made out of glass, and it was connected by a full glass door, which was rare in this kingdom.
Cordelia smiled at Kaylie.
“Actually, that’s the room that I want you to work in today.”
Cordelia opened the door and urged Kaylie to enter.
Like the wall that separated this room from the sales floor, the back wall was covered in wood panelling up to waist length, and the upper half was covered with white paint. There were tables and chairs arranged at a moderate distance away from each other in the room, and a counter nearby.
“This room is where people who buy products can take breaks. We will offer the customers different sweets that are good for their body here.”
She wanted to offer customers tea, herbal tea, and sample sweets while they were taking a break in this room. The teacups would be small since she wasn’t charging them a fee for it, but they could purchase the items afterwards if they like it. For sweets, she would be offering a daily special of agar jelly, donuts made from bean curds, cookies made from vegetables, muffins and dried fruits. Of course, these sweets could be purchased as well.
“I received the tablecloths this morning, so would you like to help me set it up?”
She could have just left this job to Emina and Lara, but she wanted to know if this room was actually calming or not. Also, since this was her shop, she wanted to prepare things with her own hands first, and she also wanted time to get used to Kaylie.
After all the tablecloths had been set, Cordelia prepared small cards and cube card stands.
“These cards have a brief description of the items on sale as well as their prices.”
“Is that the logo of the shop… in the top right corner?”
“Yes. We had them drawn with stencils.”
“It’s… very nice. Cordelia-sama will be admired by more women from now on.”
Kaylie smiled a little since she liked the logo.
“But this part covers what I’m not good at.”
“What you’re not good at?”
“Yeah. I actually wanted to draw a picture of each of the plants on the cards, but it was difficult for me. That’s why I made a stencil to make this work out.”
She also thought about outsourcing this task, but she didn’t want information about the shop leaking out before the opening, and the servants were also careful not to say anything about the shop.
“But, the logo of the shop is very elegant.”
Kaylie added, and Cordelia laughed while taking out a postcard-sized piece of paper from the wooden box nearby.
“I like this card, so I’m glad that I’ll be using it. This is an example of the menu that we’ll be offering…”
The paper that Cordelia gave to Kaylie was unbleached, and the letters on the paper were written using a tea-based ink.
“Unusual tea names… And carrot cake? Is there a problem with this…?”
“The problem doesn’t lie in the menu items, but the appearance of the menu. I actually wanted to add some illustrations on the menu too, but the menu will change every day, and the size of the letters will change too, so it won’t be on the card. Also, I wanted different designs for the menu since it will be changing every day, but I don’t have the luxury.”
It didn’t look horrible, so she decided to use this for the time being since a simple menu wasn’t a bad idea either.
“Kaylie-sama? What’s the matter?”
Kaylie hesitated as her eyes loitered around the room, but she eventually opened her mouth after making up her mind.
“If you’re alright with it… can I draw something for it?”
“Huh? Are you good at drawing, Kaylie-sama?”
“Hmm, umm, err, I’m not good at it, hmm, and I don’t know if you will like it…”
Kaylie looked down again when she heard Cordelia’s excitement. Cordelia panicked because she thought she had surprised Kaylie, and quickly shook her head.
“If you don’t mind, then can I ask you to draw me something? There are a few stencils for drawing, but if you need anything else, then I can prepare them for you right away.”
“No, you don’t need to…! I can’t have you do that since I don’t even know if you will like it. Umm, I can bring my own tools tomorrow if you don’t mind…”
“Is that alright? Then, thank you.”
This was probably the first time Kaylie talked about herself. Moreover, it was about her own special skill. It didn’t sound like she had much confidence in her skills, but if her skills were really bad, then she wouldn’t have offered to draw something.
“U-um, Cordelia-sama. Is it alright… if I go get my tools now… after all? I feel bad for making you wait, so…”
“Of course, you can, as long as you’re alright with that. I’ll have the carriage ready for you right away.”
Fortunately, the carriage was waiting nearby since there was a chance that she would go home several times to get things.
Cordelia was thrilled to see what kind of picture Kaylie would draw for the menu and she looked forward to seeing what kind of person Kaylie was.