Magical Exchange Short Stories
Original novel written by: 御我 (Yu Wo)
Tomato Beef Soup Saves the World—translated by Minna (proofread by Trespasserby & Arcedemius; C/E edited by lucathia)
[Yu Wo’s author notes]
This is actually a work from a long time ago.
At first, I thought I had lost it when I switched computers.
But surprisingly, I found that I have a draft saved with my friend Ash.
So, this child came back to my side. I’m most thankful to Ash~
Now, looking at this writing from such a long time ago,
I truly have a 囧 kind of feeling…
(When I wrote this, I’m sure Xü Chun Mei1 was still very popular! Look at how old this work is!)
Enough with the talking. Bon appétit:
Magical Exchange—side story, a parody: Tomato Beef Soup Saves the World
On a normal street, there was a little wooden house with no set color. Sometimes it was black, sometimes it was white, and above the entrance there hung a board with the words “God ‘n Devil” inscribed on it. Inside the little house at this time…
“Don’t kid with me. Why do I have to take this brat with me to go grocery shopping?” A black-haired man dangerously narrowed his blood red eyes, glaring at a girl who only reached his knees. The fair-haired and blue-eyed cute little girl pursed her lips and glared back.
The golden-haired man on the other side watched the show of big eyes glaring at small eyes. He showed a warm, helpless smile. “Devil Chaos, I’m only asking you to buy a bag of salt with Angel Doll. Do you have to have such a strong reaction?”
“Why don’t you go and buy it yourself?” Devil Chaos didn’t care at all. After snorting disdainfully, he immersed himself in watching the television again.
“Big brother Devil Chaos is a big lazy person. He is a big lazy person who only knows how to watch TV!” Angel Doll stood in front of the TV and kept making faces at the “big lazy person” on the couch.
Devil Chaos was so angry he ground his teeth. “Annoying brat, distance yourself from my TV or I’ll devour you as my midnight snack!”
“Nonono!” Angel Doll shook her little head with all her might.
“Stinking brat, I’ll eat you!” Devil Chaos was already reaching out with his long fingernails.
“But… Devil Chaos, I have to stew the soup and can’t leave.” God Charity looked at the tantrum-throwing duo, one big, one small, and couldn’t help interrupting them while smiling, “Today’s soup is your favorite, tomato stewed with beef.”
Devil Chaos, who was reaching out with his long nails, moved around restlessly. Immediately he thought of a pot full of tomato soup as red as blood together with hearty beef. Devil Chaos finally raised his head reluctantly, and sent God Charity a death glare. “I can go buy it by myself.”
God Charity revealed an awkward smile. “Uhh but last time, instead of sugar, you bought salt. Instead of salt, you bought MSG. Instead of soy sauce, you bought…”
Devil Chaos revealed a rare embarrassed state, turned around, and shouted, “All right, all right, I’ll take the brat with me. You better stay at home and properly stew my tomato beef soup!”
God Charity smiled and crouched down to instruct little Angel Doll, “Remember to buy salt. Also don’t let Devil Chaos run around the place recklessly. It’ll become a big disaster.”
Little Angel Doll’s face was full of resolution. She nodded her head earnestly and then hurriedly rushed to the front door, while firmly grabbing Devil Chaos’s hand, not letting go. Before the door closed, he could still hear Devil Chaos moodily shout, “Let me go, you annoying brat. Can’t you walk by yourself?”
After God Charity sent off the two quarreling people with his eyes, he smiled in a relaxed fashion. “This way, there shouldn’t be any more problems. I can finally stew my soup in peace.”
Walking on the street at sundown, all the people in the surroundings were just getting off work. Devil Chaos, who stood out because of his evil and leisurely appearance, could make females ranging from five to fifty infatuated with him incessantly, but… this time it was a little bit different. Even if he were as handsome as can be, having a cute little girl climb on his head would make the surrounding females immediately change tunes from “So handsome,” to “Ah! He has a kid already,” and then retreat ten steps in disappointment.
“You rotten little brat!” As Devil Chaos sensed one disappointed expression after another, he quickened his pace while feeling very displeased, and arrived at the supermarket close to home a few minutes after.
The danger level in the supermarket during sundown wouldn’t be less than that of a battlefield, even more so to Devil Chaos. Truth be told, a battlefield would be a better place for Devil Chaos than a supermarket by a hundredfold. Watching apron-wearing, basket-holding people with an average age of forty to fifty years who belonged to that crowded battlefield and did everything to force themselves in and out, Devil Chaos’s expression contorted, and he shouted to the little girl on his head, “Hey, brat, go in and buy the sugar. I’ll wait for you outside.”
“It’s salt, stupid!” Angel Doll jumped off of Devil Chaos’s head, pressed her hands to her hips and asked in a voice dripping with doubt, “Idiot, are you actually able to wait here obediently and not run around?”
Devil Chaos impatiently nodded his head.
But Angel Doll showed a very, very doubtful expression. She then extended her pinky and seriously said, “Pinky promise.”
“Rotten little brat, who would want to make a pinky promise with you?” Devil Chaos revealed his white teeth, as if he wanted to chomp on Angel Doll.
“No pinky promise, then Angel Doll won’t buy.” Angel Doll pouted and then made another threat. “If there is no salt, big brother God Charity won’t be able to make a tasty tomato beef soup.”
“You!” Devil Chaos gritted his teeth, while thinking of that pot of red soup… Finally, he extended his pinky unwillingly, hooked his finger with Angel Doll’s pinky at light speed, and then withdrew it immediately after.
“I’ll go buy salt now.” After receiving Devil Chaos’s promise, Angel Doll was satisfied and rushed into the evening battlefield. With her small stature, she managed to squeeze herself into the crowd without any trouble.
Bored senseless, Devil Chaos stood by the side of the supermarket’s entrance, letting the female warriors, who were coming and going, feast their eyes on him and leave satisfied with shopping baskets in hand afterwards, as if he were being eye raped by hundreds of people. Devil Chaos’s face contorted with every passing minute.
Fortunately… or unfortunately, a chaotic scene promptly attracted his attention. His mouth curved into a satisfied grin as his blood red eyes turned even redder upon his detection of ire, discontentment, and resentment.
A man and woman were having a fierce fight. The long haired girl, whose tears were smeared all over her face, shrieked, “You want to leave me? To go to another woman’s place? Who is it? Is it Lili or Chun Mei?”
“They have nothing to do with this. We just don’t seem to fit together,” the man replied impatiently.
“Liar! I’m sure it’s Chun Mei. That vixen, I’m gonna kill her,” the long haired girl cried tearfully. At the same time, she grabbed the boy’s arm with her claw-like hands, which were painted with red nail polish.
“Stop throwing a fit.” The man pulled away from the girl’s hand, shoved her forcefully, and caused her to fall on the ground with a piercing shriek.
After eyeing her with disgust, the man turned and left, and the girl who was kneeling on the floor cried out, “Don’t go, Xiao Qiang.2 If you leave, I will have nothing left, nothing left…”
Xiao Qiang naturally didn’t turn around. Only the devil, who harbored malicious intentions, wagged his devil’s tail and approached the girl. He whispered, “Don’t you want to ruin that man? I can fulfill your every wish.”
The girl jumped and turned her head to look at Devil Chaos. Seeing his evil and handsome face, she actually inhaled sharply and revealed a shy blush. “Really… Then, are you willing to become my new boyfriend?”
“What?” Devil Chaos’s expression changed drastically. How did things end up being about him? After receiving countless glances from the girl, Devil Chaos finally realized that this was ridiculous and hurriedly said, “Nonono, not that wish, change it. How about something like destroying the world?”
“Anything you say.” She shyly fiddled with the hem of her shirt.
Devil Chaos was dumbfounded. What? She agreed so easily? He exploded with manic laughter. The originally clear sky started to be covered by dense black clouds through the eruption of a gale. A huge cloak draped itself on Devil Chaos’s shoulders and then danced in the wind. Along with the wind, his feet slowly took off from the ground. At last, his entire person floated in mid-air, and he saw everything from a bird’s-eye view, looking down on the ignorant common people.
Devil Chaos’s face was full with vicious shadows. A voice like the devil’s echoed, “I have long waited for this wish. Now, I, by the name of Devil Chaos, will accomplish your wish. The apocalypse is about to arrive…”
The crowd of women escaped one after another. The whole world’s sky was covered by black, ominous clouds spreading out from the supermarket. Under the unyielding lightning, the government’s center in charge of disaster control just began to light their lamps, but everything was too late already.
Amidst all that black, Devil Chaos’s pale hand was lightly raised, as if to declare that everything was to lead to nothingness…
“Hey, what are you doing?” Angel Doll unexpectedly spread her pair of wings and flew to Devil Chaos, who was floating in mid-air.
“Destroying the world!” Devil Chaos laughed evilly and revealed his row of white teeth.
“Oh~” Angel Doll tilted her head and thought out loud, “You want to destroy the world? But if the word is destroyed, there won’t be any tomato beef soup to eat anymore!”
The sound of thunder coming down boomed, and you could see the struggle and pain on Devil Chaos’s face. Finally, he slowly retracted that pale hand of his, changed to holding Angel Doll’s hand with it, and then the cloak disappeared. Devil Chaos and Angel Doll also dropped to the ground. Every black cloud, the escaped crowd, all of it was taken back like a rewinding tape.
That one girl returned from the distance and was rewound to the scene of kneeling on the ground in front of Devil Chaos. She just happened to say, “Really… Then, are you willing to become my new boyfriend?”
Devil Chaos replied coldly, “Keep dreaming!”
Afterward, the crowd of women was still fighting on the evening battlefield, and the center for disaster control’s lamps was still off. Devil Chaos held hands with Angel Doll, and they slowly returned to the small cottage. From a distance, one could still hear Devil Chaos say, “When we get back, we have to tell God Charity to leave all of the tomato beef soup for me.”
“In your dreams,” Angel Doll answered back.
“Rotten little brat…”
On this fine day, everything was as usual, but no one knew that Angel Doll and a pot of tomato beef soup had saved the world.
1 “Xü Chun Mei (許純美)”: a very extreme person, who was invited by TV stations to raise their viewer rates. She was the person to gossip about in the period from 2003-2007 in Taiwan.
2 “Xiao Qiang”: means Little Strong, a common name used to refer to a cockroach, as cockroaches don’t die very easily at all.