The moment I heard the name of Masis’ grandfather, I struggled to resist the laughter that was going to explode.
“Pff... My name is Jackson. Kuek!”
Kukuku, what was this name? I bit my lip. The developer who named the NPC had a good naming sense.
“Hum hum!” I tried to cough to suppress my laughter, but it was hard.
Then Masis looked at me with worried eyes. “Elder, are you okay?”
“Kuk! I’m fine, Mas...”
‘Masis’ was the grandson of ‘Zalmergus.’  I started to avoid the eyes of the two people again. It was likely that I would explode with laughter if I met their eyes. In the end, I took out the mask again as a last resort to regain stability. Phew, I could live now. Kukukukukuk, that name, kukukuk. I laughed silently for a long time before I was forced to look at the message that suddenly popped up.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ feels the energy of what he stole.]
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ wants you to reclaim it.]
...Crazy guy. It was ridiculous. Why did I have to get back what he had stolen? Surely this jerk didn’t want me to steal?
“Hello, I’m Crystal.”
“Grandfather, they were the people who helped save me.”
“Ohh, I see. I really appreciate it, Crystal.”
We greeted each other lightly before sitting down at the nearest table. Zalmergus wanted to serve a meal to the people who saved his grandson and requested that we not leave. I couldn’t refuse his request and ended up sitting down. However, that wasn’t the problem.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ insists that he feels the energy of what he stole.]
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ says it is yours.]
What was this jerk talking about? He stole it yet now it was mine? There was no robbery like this. “He is an incomprehensible guy.”
“Huh...?” Sujeong was confused.
“Ah, you’re talking about that constellation? Well?”
“He wants me to steal.”
“Huh...? All of a sudden?” Kim Sujeong frowned and made an outraged expression. The expression she was making now was just like my expression.
My thoughts on that didn’t last long though.
“Now, eat up.” Masis smiled at us and started to fill the table with hearty dishes. The delicious smell of the food seemed to stimulate my five senses. We devoured the food. I was taking in the utmost flavor and taste that could be felt here when Zalmergus came out of the kitchen.
“I don’t know if it suits your taste buds. Cough! Cough!”
He was dressed as a chef, not that strange attire from earlier. I gave him a thumbs-up without speaking. It was the same for Kim Sujeong next to me. Zalmergus laughed like he was satisfied with our response. “Kekeke.”
It was at this moment.
Our eyes widened at the same time. The white outfit that Zalmergus wore suddenly turned back into the initial bizarre suit when he pulled a thread from the inside! We were dazzled for a moment by the magical sight.
“Hahaha! This is the ‘Great Cooking Suit’ passed down from my ancestors through generations of my family. If I pull the thread, I can become a chef again.”
He pulled the thread and was once again a neat-looking chef.
I seemed to know why children liked transforming robots so much. However, I couldn’t bear to ask for it. It was passed down from generation to generation, so I couldn’t take it. Still, I licked my lips because it was true that I wanted it. Lick. I couldn’t get it.
Then at this moment, it actually happened...
“Keke. It seems you really like this outfit. I can’t give you this, but... do you want me to tell you how to make it?”
“Is it really okay?”
“Of course. You saved Masis.”
What was this gain? I felt excited for a while like a child who was promised a toy for his birthday from his father. However, in this world, nothing was free.
“Instead, I have a request.”
* * *
After the meal, we continued to sit at the table. Zalmergus opened his mouth and said, “I’m sorry. I regret that I’m taking up your time...”
“It’s fine. By the way, let’s talk about it now. What would you like me to do?”
...What was it?
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ can feel something ominous coming.]
“Grandfather, don’t tell me...” The words came from Masis, who was sitting beside Zalmergus. Masis had a stunned expression on his face as he tried to dissuade his grandfather.
Masis’ expression was unusual like he was trying to stop a man who was rushing to do dangerous things. “Grandfather, you can’t. You decided not to cook it anymore!”
I frowned to myself. Cook? What type of dish could he cook that would make Masis look like this? I was curious for a moment. It was the question of a person who once walked the culinary path.
“In fact, I want to cook one more dish for Jackson.”
“Grandfather, you can’t!”
There was a cold air flowing between Zalmergus and Masis. Kim Sujeong made an expression like she didn’t know what to do as she glanced between the two people. Zalmergus said, “I’m going to retire and make this dish for the last time. Can you eat the dish containing the last of my soul?”
[Hidden Quest - Chef Zalmergus’ Last Supper]
-In the narrow alleys of Mulan is a place where Chef Zalmergus and his grandson Masis live. Zalmergus wants to retire after serving this dish to the benefactor who saved his grandson. Eat the last dish he will make!
-Completion Conditions: Taste Zalmergus’ cooking 0/1
-This quest is only available to level 10 users.
-If you can’t eat it, your quest will fail.]
I was in a daze for a moment. The difficulty was S-grade. Considering that the most difficult quest I had ever received was D+, it was hard to imagine an S-grade difficulty. What did he want to cook? Anxiety struck me once again.
“Can I ask what type of dish it is?”
“That...” It was Masis who answered. “In fact, it is spicy food. No, it is extremely hot. Jackson, you should know that there is no one who comes to this restaurant. It is because someone died a few years ago due to Grandfather’s cooking.”
What the hell did he put in the dish that a person died from eating it? I needed to confirm the facts.
“Is this true?”
“Yes... there were people who ate it and were carried away. In fact, I’m afraid that Jackson will be in danger. A few years ago, someone died after challenging the hottest food here, and it became a store where people no longer came.”
I continued to listen to Zalmergus.
“I want to wash away the stigma before I retire. Please eat my homemade dish. Please, Jackson!” He knelt on the ground and bowed his head. “I won’t stand up until you say that you’ll eat it!”
This was really...
I thought it was unlikely we were talking the same language. The pressure stabbed at my entire body.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ is watching your choice.]
Hrmm. It was a virtual reality, so I wasn’t really going to die. “I’ll try it.”
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ is nodding at your courage.]
Zalmergus was quite happy. He got up from his seat and danced before entering the kitchen.
Kim Sujeong asked with anxious eyes, “Will you be okay?”
“I won’t really die in virtual reality, so it’s fine.”
She still seemed a bit worried. Maybe she saw the difficulty of the quest that I received. The suspicious sounds coming from the kitchen made me tilt my head. At this moment, Masis approached me. “Elder, is it okay?”
“Of course. Nothing will go wrong.”
“...I’m really grateful.” Masis quickly turned his head away as tears filled his eyes. He was probably full of heartache. It was obvious. The villagers must’ve kept pointing fingers at him because his grandfather killed a man. He didn’t show it, but he was probably very hurt. Now I would remove the stigma. I would make it so that the young man in front of me could raise his shoulders and live with dignity.
Then Zalmergus came out.
...What was this?
He was carrying a large, old pot. There was some slight peeling on the outside, but I could see from the unique aura being emitted from the pot that it was unusual.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ is claiming that the pot is also yours.]
This jerk was still going on. “Crazy bastard.”
“...?” Masis next to me was bewildered.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ is hurt by your words.]
He was a timid guy. It was natural to be scolded when talking nonsense. It was at this moment that...
I became perplexed. Zalmergus suddenly threw the pot he was holding into the air! I closed my eyes at the thought that something would soon be broken. However, there was a reversal.
The pot was floating in the air. We looked at the pot with surprise while Masis seemed like he hadn’t seen this in a long time. Zalmergus opened his mouth and said, “This is weather cooking.”
...What? Fire started to swirl inside the empty store!
“What is this?!”
“Ah, in the end...” Masis covered his eyes with one hand. The flames soon gathered in one place and took shape.
A sun? Yes, this was the sun that I knew. The dazzling and arrogant light of the sky was swirling in front of me.
[The apostle ‘Fire Thief Looking Ahead’ is watching the fire he stole.]
[You are the first to appreciate the great light of the beginning.]
[Your fame has risen by 1,000.]
The sun spoke with a smile, “Solar has appeared!”
 I was googling up and down to figure out this joke and couldn't find it. Didn't even think about how it sounded like. This is one of the disadvantages of being an non-native Korean speaker. Thanks to Kuro Hakuto for giving the most likely explanation.
Kuro Hakuto: "masis" (pronounced the korean way) sounds a bit like "tasty" in korean, and "Zalmergus" like "I ate well" (which is a phrase we use after a meal generally).
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