2016-08-29 - Taking The Cake 1/2

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Title: Taking The Cake (1/2)

A Sister Schools field trip to a cake factory culminates in a cake-baking exercise.


Gordon, Kuniko Saito, Takeo Akamizu, Chika Aki, Hibiki Houjou, Kanade Minamino, Fuu Hououji, Yumi Ohzora, Saki Hyuuga, Iona Hikawa

GM: Honoka Yukishiro


TipTap Cake Factory, Tama Outer City

OOC - IC Date:

08-29-2016 - 11-17-2014

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKZhT1h3p_4

The TipTap Cake Factory is a much-beloved institution in Tokyo, their cakes consumed widely at government functions, school events, conferences, meetings, and so on. Of course, in a city of millions, there are many such bakeries, but this one has something that sets them apart from the pack: a mascot.

Sakura-chan the Merry Cherry has appeared in commercials, on billboards, and -- via full-sized costume -- at events ranging from sports championships to idol concerts. Everyone knows the Merry Cherry, and so everyone knows TipTap Cake Factory.

They only do field trips as rare favors, but someone in the Sister Schools knows someone at TipTap, and so this has come to be. The factory is very white and very gleaming, very full of glass, very free of dirt. Students are all in TipTap-provided slippers, gloves, hats and aprons (all of which are emblazoned with Sakura-chan -- they've been told they have to return most of it but that the hats are a gift from the company).

Already the group has gotten the grand tour, allowed to observe both the assembly line-style baking of endless rounds of cake, in and out of rows of ovens, the boxing of completed creations, and the meticulous artistry on display as a patient and diligent woman decorates a wedding cake to be delivered this very evening.

Now it is time for the much-anticipated main event: cakery bakery in a wide-open room filled with individual tables, each set up as a full-service preparation station, with bowls of flours, sugars, eggs, butter, and so forth. Then, at one end of the room is a cornucopia of additives; syrups, powders, all manner of flavorings and texture-altering goodies.

At the other end are the ovens, which are already preheating at a range of temperatures (each option shown in bright digital letters at the top).

In the middle of the room, the TipTap Tour Guide, Misa Amakawa, claps her hands to get everyone's attention. "Okay! At each station are the supplies you will need for a basic two-layer white cake. There are also little booklets with suggestions for how you could add flavorings to the cake, and in what quantities, in order to make a different type -- chocolate, almond, coconut, and so forth! You are encouraged to experiment, and if you have any questions, feel free to ask. Once your cakes are in the oven -- go with 350F unless the booklet suggests otherwise because you're doing something very different -- we'll replace your supplies and you'll be able to prepare frostings, icings and creams for when it's time to decorate!"

Middle-school teacher Haruna Sakurada of Juuban is holding a long list of the student attendees, and starts barking off group assignments with all the care and consideration for complex and political student social dynamics of a bull in a china shop. "Saito, Hikawa, Houjou, Aki, Akamizu." Breath, "Hououji, Minamino, Hyuuga, Ohzora." Volunteer parent chaperones and other such chefs are of course welcome to wander as they will -- that goes without saying.

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

Gordon the Rabbit, of course, knows how to bake a cake.

Perhaps he is better with meat and chicken dishes, having made his bones on the broiler station before he became a chef. But, every good cook needs to know how to bake a cake. At bare minimum, it's proper for a cook to bake a cake for their friend's birthday. It has other uses.

Which is why Gordon insisted on going to, and bringing some of his club members along, TipTap. The rabbit hops down the middle of the hall, wearing his chef's whites -- no hat, of course, because such things look ridiculous (in his somewhat grumpy opinion) -- and he looks around to make sure students are paying attention when Amakawa-san and Sakurada-sensei talk.

He stops, though, and looks at them; he lingers on the first group for the moment. "All right! Let's see what you're going to make!"

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Kanada had to admit, if she wasn't working at her parents bakery, this place would be a dream job for her. If anything, it was a goal for her. Perhaps to not exactly work there, but as inspiration to for Kanade to run her own business. They cakes were gorgeous, could even be argued to be works of art.

Yet, despite the place being a prime location to inspire her artistic flair, she had trouble focusing on it, thanks to Hibiki deciding to be childish for the last couple of days. Kanade grumbled as she tried to pay attention to the tour guide. "Just wait it out," Kanade muttered. "She just burn herself out eventually."

Eventually, she heard the names called out for groups and gave a sigh of relief to hear she and Hibiki were NOT in the same group. That was probably for the best. With Hibiki's temper, she could easily decide it was a perfect time to fling batter at Kanade's face or something. She gave a smile to her other group members. "So, what kind of cake should we make? I'm open to suggestions," she said as she flipped through the booklet.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Sometimes somebody ahs to earn a little extra credit, and this time, Takeo Akamizu, 2nd year class of Ohtori Academy has that distinct honor. The only way he was getting out of serious trouble was if he showed up, followed instructions, and baked a cake. He had to pause at that. Why the Principal would assign him baking a cake he would never know, especially since he was allowed to KEEP said cake....

He very briefly wondered if Bacon Frosting was a thing.

So it is that Takeo, clad in this impromptu uniform moves to his spot and looks at the ingediants and the lsits and just ... blinks. Unlike a certain rabbit, Takeo has NO idea how to bake a cake. He barely knows how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwhich...


Takeo stares at a jar of Peanut Butter, a jar of Jelly, and bread. He pokes the bread. "Become a sandwhich..." A pause as nothing happens. "DAMN!"


Takeo pokes a bowl of ingrediants. "Become a chocolatte cake!" A pause. "DAMN!"

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Kuniko Saito came here with an eye towards what's being done at a factory. She has a wariness about factories in general, but the sad truth is that you have to scale things up somehow in this modern day, and it's not impossible for love to be present... probably.

And there is a certain beauty in the production of cakes in this manner. This place is clean, with the smell of Malliard reactions in the air. Maybe it's not so bad, judges Kuniko Saito, but then...

They're presented with their own challenges. Kuniko had dressed casual for today, with a pair of blue cloth dungarees and a button-up blouse marked by a bandanna prominently including the black star of Infinity on a blue background. (All of this under the branded additional material, of course.) Having already scrubbed up her hands, she answers Sakurada, "Got it!" when she's listed off.

Her attention snaps to her designated mini-- er-- compatriots, and she cracks a grin. "I'm thinking almond, since I don't think we can pull off a baklava with what we've got here. But," and here Kuniko puts both hands on the work table, leaning forwards with an intense expression, "I'm open to the floor. Give me your ideas and we can bring your dreams to life. Trust me, I'm -"

Gordon crosses her field of vision. Kuniko becomes visibly less intense and straightens up with better manners. "Experienced in all kinds of culinary stuff." To Takeo, she adds, "So you want chocolate?"

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

For a girl who might as well be a fox on a tour of a grand chicken farm, Hibiki Houjou is in a positively foul mood.

She arrived at the factory together with her good friend Kanade Minamino, dressed in pale Infinity blue. There was, however, no friendly banter between them - those nearby might have heard a few pointed comments from the twin-tailed girl, all falling on deaf ears. The exact topic, unfortunately, is lost to time.

So, dressed in an apron and hat, Hibiki did her best to enjoy herself, but pointedly looking through different windows than her friend, asking other classmates about details on one thing or another. When the teacher makes her announcement, it's a relief for her as well - and she almost makes it to her table without a glance back.

Almost. "Oh, really?" Much louder a statement than it needs to be, as Hibiki plants her hands on her hips. "Now you're open to suggestions? Well, listen up - our team is going to make a cake ten times as delicious as yours - I'll bet my pride as a woman on it!"

With a huff, she turns to regard her team, and can almost hide the panic - but there's no backing down after that. Unfortunately, this high school boy doesn't seem to be a secret cake expert, but her senpai seems to have a better sense of things. "All right! Flavours. We could do chocolate and...a fruit? Maybe plum?"

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Fuu is somewhat relieved to hear her group called as quickly as it is, and she wastes little time in filtering out of the group and heading to their assigned cake station. A polite bow and brief introduction later, she too is considering the booklet.

"Well, the 'default' two-layer white cake would certainly be simple enough," she considers. "However, I wonder if a marbled cake would be more interesting to eat ... is that a simple matter of mixing two types of batter together, or mixing fudge of some kind into the regular batter, or ..." She frowns, "But if it's mixed too thoroughly, they'll blend together instead of marbling." She looks (and smiles) to Saki and Yumi, "What do you think?"

She pauses briefly, looking in Takeo's direction ... then shakes her head a little and turns her attention back to her own group.

<Pose Tracker> Iona Hikawa [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Iona Hikawa had enjoyed the field trip so far. The tour was magnificent. The assembly-style bakery part wasn't her most favorite--she is a person who enjoys the process of making the cakes. But she did like the intricate artistry that went into all of the cakes. But then came the main event, and the two groups had been split-- well, after that, Iona quietly excused herself for a moment and made her way to a bathroom, where she manages to find it quiet and free of people.

Iona quickly flips through her binder full of PreCards to look for a suitable cook outfit. She sees her police officer outfit, she sees her fancy dress from the Ohtori party, she sees her magical girl outfit that totally isn't Cure Fortune's, really. But no pastry chef outfit.

So when Iona rejoins the group she's pouting just a little bit, but she doesn't let that last more than a few moments. "So, what are we doing?" She asks the rest of the group, completely innocent of whatever had been happening before.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Turning the instructions this way and that, Takeo scratches at the back fo his neck. "Man. How do you do this?" He asks before setting the instructions down and picking up some ingrediants. He reads step one and begins to VERY slowly follow it.

He notices Fuu looking his direction and gives her a wink and that at Ohtori at least, famous smile of his. (Think Flynn Ryder.) Before he looks back to the ingrediants and concentrates. "Are you sure you don't want to jsut become a chocolatte cake? Because that would be great ... "

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Yumi has had a great time so far. In addition to the mere presence of cake, the high schooler likes a certain Merry Cherry, and now that they're here, it's so /fascinating/ to watch where everything else and how it goes, all the moving parts and people roaming about doing their tasks. Twice she about tipped over trying to get a better look at something.

A member of the Cooking Club obviously has a good reason to come.

Yumi is looking over the bowls when Misa starts talking, and remembers to look up at around 'supplies'. Experiment...

Yumi glances between the others at her table. "The kind we get to eat," she jokes to start, and waits for a reaction. "But, uh..." Between Fuu and Kanade, "Oh, that's an idea, Hououji-san. But do we want to mix too much between different kinds? I haven't gotten to cakes yet, and I don't want it to blow up in the oven or something. What's the booklet say about that?" Pause. "...Vanilla's nice though. It means you can let the frosting shine more."

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

Gordon fixes Takeo with a /look/. "I think the process is a good deal more complicated than whining at it, Akamizu."

He gives Kuniko a brief look, before he pauses. He hears Hibiki's declaration of a /contest/. The rabbit frowns for a moment, looking between the two. "Well, a little friendly competition usually makes a lot better cooks!" he says. "I approve. Better get moving, though!"

Then, he hopes away from the first team and to the second team's table, and peers up at them. One might almost miss him; after all, the mini-lop rabbit is... well... a rabbit. He isn't more than a foot high. "If you marble it, make sure they can mix! You don't want one that cooks so much slower that it's half-raw."

Hop, hop.

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Plums are like my favorite fruit," Kuniko says. "I'm down. I think that'd be interesting with chocolate, actually." (She thinks.)

"We're making a cake," Kuniko informs Iona. "It's going to be amazing! Look at this group!" After this Takeo gives Fuu a sexy wink and goes back to looking hopefully at the ingredients.

"What do YOU want to put into it?" Kuniko tells Takeo. Then, "While we figure this out we gotta break some eggs." She pulls the bowl over and immediately starts doing just that with a menacing efficiency that would intimidate any chicken. "But I think chocolate with plum filling, that's good. You think we should dice it or try to do it in the frosting or jelly? Gotta decide fast!" (Yumi gets the passing Nod of Acknowledgement, but she's too occupied to call out a greeting. Also, she's trying to remember Ohzora's name.)

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Misa Amakawa, the employee, drifts up to Fuu, Kanade, Saki and Yumi. "To marble a cake, you lightly blend two different batters," she explains cheerfully, all smiles, after Gordon has addressed a far more complex nuance. "We do have enough bowls for that option, if that's what you want to do!"

She gestures at the Tower of Bowls. It shines with glisteningly clean pyrex. There's very little glass here, not for lending out to students, but this stuff is sturdy and heat-withstanding.

Which is really just as well, as Gurio Umino backs into the tower and they go sprawling together about one second later. "Mouuuu," groans Naru Osaka, another Juuban 9th-grader, puffing her cheeks out with sheer exasperation... before going to help him tidy up.

Misa's smile doesn't waver. "I'll go get some more clean bowls~!" she trills. (Remember, Misa-chan. Triple overtime. Triple overtime.)

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Kanade's eyes twitch at Hibiki's vow and gives a sigh as she attempts to ignore her. "A marble cake would be fun, Hououji-san. but I realize it might be a bit advance for everyone, but vanilla might be a bit too smile." She clapped her hands together. "How about we make a two layer cake that's one layer of pure chocolate and another layer of vanilla? That's way it's a compromise, of the two ideas." She gave a laugh.

"It's such a more GROWN UP way of handling things, unlike other CERTAIN people I know." Kanade can't help but say the last part rather loudly to make certain specific ears could hear it.

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

Saki Hyuuga sees cakes made all the time, back at home, but seeing it in a factory setting is new and exciting! Also, it's food, so really she'd be excited regardless. She's spent the entire time plastered to windows, eyes wide with interest.

But now, the main event!! She hears her name called and happily steps over. Has she heard one of those names before? Uh, maybe? Saki doesn't retain information that doesn't relate to softball, food, or Mai Mishou.

She picks up the booklet quickly, but being herself, her eyes dart around to the group. Kanade is nice and starts things up! "Oh, uhm..." ...she hadn't really thought this far ahead, actually. Fuu has some ideas, and Saki's nodding a little with Yumi, too. "I like chocolate!" she chirps, because that's how she helps things.

Gordon offers advice. She peers downward, and helpfully adds, "That's bad," for everyone, in the voice of someone who knows exactly how bad from personal trial.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Everywhere I go Rabbits cause me trouble..." Takeo mutters under his breath as he begins to SLOWLY and CAREFULLY mix in ingrediants. He mutters something about carrots and celery and what rabbits can do with them before he pauses and looks to the ingrediants again. Then to the instructions. Then to the ingrediants.

"Oh man. Where was I?" He asks softly to no-one inparticular. ARG. That Rabbit got him confused. FREAKING RABBITS. He sighs. "At least Merlin-sama isn't here. I don't know if I could take two bunnies." he mutters darkly and softly, before adding cheerily to the rabbit. "My apologies Gordan-Sensei." He then picks up the ingrediants again and tries to figure out where he was. Again.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Sadly for Takeo's romantic overtures, Fuu already has a love interest and isn't in the market for another one. She does smile back at him briefly, though, just before saying, "I'm fairly certain that cake ingredients aren't so susceptible to the power of words that they'll spontaneously transfigure themselves into a completed cake without a little more effort than that ... as Gordon-sensei says," she adds, smiling as she nods to the culinary lapine.

Gordon's point about making sure the batters are compatible is also VERY valid, and Fuu inclines her head even more respectfully before her attention returns to her group's station once again. And then Ms. Amakawa speaks up, and Fuu nods attentively. "Ah, so *lightly* blending," she acknowledges. "So ... most of these recipes use the same temperature and time, but we need to double-check. The basic vanilla batter, and a fudge batter ..."

If she can 'borrow' (monopolize) the cookbook for a couple of moments, she finds the index, riffles to the appropriate pages, and looks for temperature and baking time. They'd better be an exact match for her idea to work - but she's still open to somebody voting *against* a marble cake, too.

Like Kanade's suggestion of two different layers. "That may be more feasible," Fuu admits."

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Yumi finds that something registers just a little too late, and tilts her head over in Hibiki's direction. "You think...? I think we could both do well."

As she often does, she sounds a little spaced out, though she smiles Kuniko's way before she looks back to Kanade. "Ooh, that's a good idea." A beat, looking to Saki, "Or we could make the other layer chocolate. I'm not really picking. But that sounds like a way to make it a really interesting cake!" She finds herself saying this about the same time as the crash happens. "...I guess we'll need some new bowls for that though. Oh well, they'll be here soon enough!"

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Hibiki cheerfully throws an arm around Iona's shoulders in a brief moment of camaraderie. "Welcome to the team! Our goal is simple: To make the most delicious cake here!...and it's going to be rough because we have rivals in the Baking Club but we're not going to falter!"

She lets go of her new teammate, and leans over to peer at the recipe - somehow completely missing that confident Ohtori wink. Maybe it's an off day. She reads through the recipe with determination...and again with determination...and again with determination...


But apparently, her idea is good enough to satisfy Kuniko - whose egg-demolishing skills are something to behold - and she nods rapidly. "Right! Plum filling. They can be kind of chewy when tried, so in between...uh...a jelly or compote, I guess? Layer chocolate chocolate cake with compote? That seems pretty good..."

She speaks a bit louder for a moment. "And something you couldn't just do with a cupcake!" Her pointed comment crosses Kanade's, and Hibiki turns to shoot Kanade a glare.

Only a moment - and she sets to retrieving some plums to pulverize.

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Of those in her group, Chika may well be the quietest. She'd been quiet through most of the tour, blown away by the factory and everything they'd been shown. She loved to cook, and had been a member of the cooking club as long as she was allowed to be! And what a first day to be at school! FIELD TRIP DAY ONE!

When everyone starts to look at the recipe... and a few start to mix ingredients... she leans over to try and take a peek at the recipe as well, glancing around at her other teammates to see who is doing what. With Takeo looking like he might be struggling a bit, thats where Chika goes.

"Hi. Uhm, do you need some help with that?" She asks softly.

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

More bowls appear in short order, rolled in on a cart with a single squeaky wheel, which even in a room of this size announces its arrival like its own court herald. Misa thanks the guy who brought them in -- he's a younger fellow, maybe just out of high school, and his smile is far brighter than hers as he looks around the room at all the eager cooks. He gives the room two thumbs up, then returns to his duties.

Naru helps Umino /carefully/ carry more bowls back to their station. Kanade's little brother Souta isn't far behind them, with his grumpy friend Ako in tow. Ako overhears Hibiki and Kanade's bickering and rolls her eyes so thoroughly that the dough of her face will be pie crust in no time. "/Real/ mature," she mutters under her breath, quietly enough to be plausibly deniable if anyone complains.

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Kuniko's eyes narrow as Takeo starts talking smack about lagomorphs - but he seems to check himself in time. She finishes destroying some eggs and reaches for the flour, tapping her fingers as she thinks about how to do this. To Hibiki, she says, "I'm thinking we have a kind of time crunch here, so let's do a layer of plum compote between the two layers. Right? So we get the plum in each slice but it's kinda contained."

The mention of cupcakes makes Kuniko's eyebrows raise. Sounds like a challenge to her.

A challenge disrupted by THE FALL OF BOWLS. "Ugh!! We gotta get metal ones to melt the chocolate!" Kuniko is apparently planning ahead already. Then to the group generally, she says, "I do want to get some slivered almonds on the top. Anyone object?"

"Hey!" she then says to Chika. "We're fixing to make a chocolate cake with plum filling. If you've got a cool idea, tell us now, because we are approaching the /point of no return/."

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

Saki hems, face screwed up. ...Kanade looks like she's fighting with that other girl. ...that seems to happen a lot around her, actually. She briefly wonders how Misumi-sempai's doing...

Clattering bowls snaps her out of that train of thought and back to business. "Uh, I'm OK with either!" she chirps. "But we should be careful if we want to marble, like Sensei said!" Nods, firmly.

<Pose Tracker> Iona Hikawa [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Iona nods when Kuniko and Hibiki let her know the score. "Well, I like that idea. Plums are nice." Iona may be biased, slightly. Iona smiles politely when Hibiki gets an arm around her. While she doesn't reciporate, she also doesn't visibly recoil or anything like that. Though when Hibiki lets her go she immediately goes over to the plums to grab a few and examine them. The best plums makes the cake test the best, after all. After that she hands the best ones to Hibiki as she finds some that passes her muster.

The bowls crashing to the ground does make her jump, as she looks over to the bowl mines and its perpetrator, and even she's gotta roll her eyes as she sees Umino.

But Kuniko suggesting almonds brings her back, and she nods after a moment. Almonds weren't her favorite thing, but it might work out. "I wouldn't mind almonds." She says to the group.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Takeo Akamizu just stops and stares a tthe ingrediants. THe poor guy is just out of his depth. There is no opponant to hit wiht a stck. No Knight of Whatever to defeat. No Motor-cycle to compete against, and certainly no sparring partner to face on the Martial Arts mat. This was a battle that Takeo Akamizu jsut might never win.

He stares with eyes of confussion, and then looks to the ingrediants again. "What would Mai-san do?" He asks hismelf. Mai being the bestest cook he knows, he figures that maybe he could channel some inspiration there. "Huh. I wonder if I make the cake for her, if I could be inspired to suddenly get it done?" He thinks to himself.

Finally deciding Takeo slams a fist into his palm. "RIGHT! I'm gonna make at least a barely edible cake! I can do this!" He nods once and then picks up the mixing bowl again. He looks around to make sure Gordon isn't nearby and whispers: "Become a chocolatte cake."


<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"Alright then, Ohzora-san, one chocolate and one marble is fine with me," Kanade declared, "but since I have more experience I can focus on the marble cake and Hououji-San, you can be in charge of the chocolate if you prefer. Teamwork is the way to get anything done!" She gave a nod. "UNDERSTANDING other people's feelings is the only way to work." She shot a glare in Hibiki's general direction before proceeding to fetch the aprons for her group and picked up the booklets. "Okay, first we need someone to melt chocolate for the batter and someone to mix the flour, eggs and butter together." She taps her chin. "Since we don't need a lot of chocolate for the marble cake, we can just take a little of the batter for the chocolate cake and swirl it into the marble one, so we really only need two bowls."

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chika looks towards Kuniko, and nods her head. "A chocolate cake with plum filling sounds wonderful." She says warmly, "And slivered almonds sounds like a good addition. The protein will offset the sweetness of the cake." The newcomer definitely wasn't going to be disagreeable.

Takeos not answering her doesn't seem to bother her, the blue-eyed girl lowering her eyes for a moment before she steps up beside him. "Willing it to happen is a good start." She says with a gentle smile, "... but how about we get the right ingredients in? If they are handling the plum sauce, you and I get to make the cake! Okay?"

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

All right. Bowl, check. Knives, check. Hand blender, check. Plums? Iona's handling the plums, and Hibiki gives her a thumbs up in exchange. She starts when the bowls come clattering down, and glances over to the commotion - and then, suspiciously, to where Kanade is working at her cake.

...that does look pretty good. "But ours is going to be better, I bet!" Grimacing in concentration, she starts peeling and chopping plums, tossing them into the bowl for further processing. It's fiddly work, and she's nowhere near as fast at it as an expert chef might be - but there's hopefully a little room for error.

But she's not completely consumed by this work. Takeo's comment has her raise her head, and double-take at the arrival of quiet Chika. "Cats are great, for the record. Well, except when they steal your cupcakes....and big guy, I'm pretty sure that's not going to work." A beat. "I've tried."

She turns, next, to Kuniko - and frowns for a moment. "Almonds? Might be interesting, but don't we need to get the cake in the oven? Not sure how long it's supposed to go in for - I figure you're the expert..."

Hang on, what did Kanade just say? Scowling in fury, she retorts just as loudly. "Well, you'll never get anywhere if you don't try to be a little adventurous!" She whirls back to the group, and pumps on fist. "Almonds it is - let's go crazy! Make this cake a wild melody!" A quick round of high-fives for whoever's closest, and she sets to turning those plums into a puree...

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"That works for me, Minamino-san," Fuu nods, smiling in agreement. "And if the chocolate cake and vanilla cake match up in terms of baking temperature and time, we should be good ... it's a metal bowl we need for melting chocolate, right? I can grab one of those, and the chocolate we'll need." She double-checks the recipe, doing some mental number-crunching, and goes to get the necessary supplies.

On her way past Takeo, she taps him on the shoulder briefly and stage-whispers, "I'm increasingly certain that being angry at the ingredients won't do them, you, or the students any good, Takeo-san."

Upon returning to her group's station, Fuu suggests, "We'll probably want to adjust the recipe sizes by just a little bit - perhaps an extra tenth as much batter for the chocolate cake, and only nine-tenths of a recipe of vanilla batter? I'm not sure how much we'll need to add from chocolate to vanilla for proper marbling ..."

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

"Oh, good idea. You really seem to know your stuff, Minamino-san." She nods right along. "Yeah, I think I like that approach. Understanding..." Thouughtful look. "But you..." Pause. Glance to Hibiki. Hmmm.

Fuu mentions her thought and Yumi decides to take the simple approach. "Maybe? Maybe we could ask Gordon-sensei if we're not sure. ...But Minamino-san looks pretty sure."

A shrug. "Either way, I can melt the chocolate! I've done that before. Leave it to me!"

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Kuniko is pleased that her DARK WILL has been exerted over her kohai, before she gives Takeo another look. "Yeah," she says finally, shifting the eggs over (she beat them... but when?? it's a mystery!) - "Whisk these in with the flour!"

With this in hand, Kuniko briefly absents herself over towards the supply section. She returns with a baggie of blanched almonds, a portable double boiler with a relevant tiny gas stove, and a bag of-- dark chocolate rounds?

Kuniko gets to work. She tells Iona as she starts up the double boiler - and Chika as well - "Can you sliver these almonds? We're not gonna roast them. We're going to put them on the cake's surface and let them add to the caramelization of the outer layers!"

<Pose Tracker> Iona Hikawa [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Iona glances sidelong at Takeo's attempt to magically conjure a cake. "That's admirable, I guess." She continues to hand Hibiki plums until she tells her to stop. "But we'll all feel great once we actually make the cake. You know, hard work and effort makes cakes taste so great!" She thinks about that for a few moments. "Though, it would mean more cakes..."

After enough plums has been gathered, she takes the almonds offered and nods. "Right on it." And she gets to work slivering almonds for the cake, but not before giving Hibiki a high-five. As she works on the almonds, she shuffles the slivered almonds to the main cake assembly area as she gets a pile.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Chika's arrival surprises the elder Ohtori student and he nearly drops his bowl. Nearly becuase after the surprise wears off he manages to balance the bowl, with a slight clatter, to the counter. "OH. Um. Yes? Yes please in the name of anything and everything holy - " He turns desperate and pleading eyes to Chika. "Help. Me?"

As Hibiki informs him, she has tried exactly what he is doing he hangs his head. "Damn." He says again with a sigh.

Then when Fuu tells him he's not helping anybody he blinks. "Oh god. I had an external conversation that was suppose to be internal again haven't I?" He pinches the bridge of his nose. "I don't know how, or why, but I bet the Rabbit is at fault..."

He snaps his head up and looks back to Chika with those desperate and pleading eyes. "What do I do now? This is a form of Magical Science that I don't understand...."

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chika glances over when Kuniko gets Iona to start slivering the almonds. She gives them an encouraging smile, before her eyes go back to Takeo.

At his words, she is blinking in surprise. "Its... Its making a cake. It is probably much easier then... then Magical Science." Was he being serious? She couldn't tell, but she wasn't the sort to make a fuss!

"Here..." She takes the bowl from him with gentle hands, and then would point to a few ingredients. "That first... And we mix! Mix mix mix mix..." She says the words like a little song, whisking everything together. Over the course of the next few minutes, she'd guide Takeo through the process of making the batter and preparing it to get into the oven. "This is honestly the easy part." She admits, "The plum filling, and putting it all together, is where the challenge is!" With Takeo's help, she'd get the cakes into the oven to start cooking.

Its a rare example of Chika being confident and comfortable at something, but the benefit of being the new girl in town is not everyone knows that!

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

"This isn't magical science!" Gordon is abruptly snapping behind Takeo. "Cooking is an art and a science! Anyone can learn to cook -- if they're willing to work hard at it! So I suggest you start doing, and stop telling the oven to make a cake exist for your bloody benefit!"

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Naru and Umino have been put into a group with Miki Kaoru and Nanami Kiryuu, and consequently their table is both soft and loud, busy and explosive. It sounds like SOMEONE has demanded that they do a seven layer tiramisu -- which they absolutely don't have all the ingredients for. Miki hits his timer every few seconds, apparently measuring the increasing rates with which Naru is giving Nanami death glares, and vice versa.

Souta, meanwhile, has disentangled himself from his group, apparently more interested in observing his big sister Kanade bake instead. "Wow, sis, it looks like snoooooot," he comments wisely, as to the contents of her group's mixing bowl. Then he grins, gap-toothed and fearless.

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

Saki agrees greatly with teamwork!! Minamino-san is pretty much taking the reins here, which is fine, because, Saki isn't actually that good at this. She's not /bad/, or anything, but...

"I've helped a bunch with mixing ingredients at home," she says, accepting the aprons as they come back. "I can do that!"

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Takeo turns those eyes, those eyes of a man who might be driven to insanity by the depths of Cake Magical Science on Gordon. "Yes Sensei." Then returns to doing as Chika instructs. He does lean over to whisper to Chika, "I wish he was a horse..."

He won't get that Chika won't understnad that. But it certianly makes HIM feel better to say it.

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The sharp and harsh words from Gordan pretty much immediantly dispel the illusion of a confident and comfortable Chika, as she blinks rapidly a few times and turns to peer in surprise at the ... rabbit. A hand comes up, and she points with an index finger.

"... Is... did that rabbit just..." She trails off, and her finger starts to tremble a little. She looks around slowly at the rest of her team, to see if anyone else is... well, commenting on the rabbit that is berating Takeo.

She quietly raises the back of her hand to touch her forehead. Is she burning up? "S-sensei?" She says softly, blinking at Takeo. "... horse...?" She mumbles. Oh yeah, Chika is confused.

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"Thank you, Ohzora-san," Kanade said with a slight blush, "and yes, Hououji, I think you got the right calculations there-"

It was then she heard Hibiki's comment. Her patience could no longer hold back her annoyance. Her little brother's added comment of their cake looking like snot didn't help matters.

"Adventurous?" she stated with a twitch as she turned around, as she let loose a growl in her throat. "Creating a brand new recipe from your head is adventurous, deciding to taste something without knowing what's in the dish is adventurous, deciding to bake a lotus root souffle is adventurous....DECIDING TO GO SWIMMING IN THE MIDDLE OF WINTER IS INSAME!!"

She huffed slight as she folded her arms. "Excuse if I don't want to be freezing in water when I should be inside keeping warm like most sane people." She panted slightly and turned about around, grabbing her spoon and viciously stirring. "AND SOUTA IF YOU WANT TO COMPLAIN ABOUT OUR CAKE THEN I GUESS YOU DON'T NEED A SLICE WHEN WE'RE DONE!"

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

Gordon stares at Takeo's back. Then, he frowns, and hops away, back towards the other team. He looks at their table -- and then hears Kanade yelling. His ears are blown backward by it.

"Bloody hell," he mutters, "reminds me of a Manchester United match..."

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

All right, plum compote!...does something like this need more than plums? For a moment, Hibiki glances to Kanade, as if she wants to ask her friend the answer - but scowls instead, reaching for one of the recipe books. There's got to be something in here, right?...

Kuniko is, helpfully, taking point on keeping this recipe organized - though Hibiki can't help but do a double-take at the on-the-spot double-boiler. "Yeesh, do you just keep cooking equipment in your purse or something, senpai? And, uh...I think this recipe looks like the best thing for the plums - we've got some vanilla bean, right?" She'd have grabbed it herself, but...

Hibiki Houjou eats delicious food, she doesn't usually make it.

She nearly jumps from her spot when Takeo's griping awakens the RAGE BUNNY, but recovers quickly. "Art's certainly a word for it - this kind of thing is delicious when made right!" She muses while getting a bit of heat under the plums herself, adding what's needed to finish the plum compote. ...it might be a bit on the sweet side, admittedly. Souta's comment earns a thumbs up, if the brat cares to look -

And then Kanade's temper explodes.

"It was a blast, I'll have you know!" Hopefully those plums can simmer a few minutes safely, because Hibiki is certainly not looking at them - and her voice is at a volume to match her friend's. "Cold water, hot sauna, that's a whole Scandinavian thing that, as it turns out, is a lot of fun! But no, you wouldn't even hear me out, would you!?"

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

Saki Hyuuga edges over to another edge of the table and starts portioning out ingredients.

She decides she is going to go home later and give Minori a big hug.

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Takeo Akamizu raises a hand toward Kanade. "I'd go swimming in the winter." He blinks. Clears his throeat and goes back to work before Gordan can get mad again...

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Oh, that's Chef," Kuniko explains to Chika as she pours the chocolate into the cake mix with one hand, whisking with the other. "He's from New York. He's amazing, isn't he?" To Hibiki, she says, "Oh I just knew what I was looking for this time. There's that whole table over there. But yeah, kind of--"

Then to Takeo, she says with more ire, "Are you just goofing around or are you gonna"


Kuniko's mouth hangs open for a couple of seconds and then snaps shut. By the time the storm passes, the cake batter is looking decidedly chocolaty. "Get the pans!" she declares. "Akamizu, pour!"

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

And then more yelling! Chika visibly cringes away from Kanade yelling. What kind of cooking competition was this?! And then one of her teammates is back on the offensive. She half-shrinks behind the prep table she'd been using to better keep an eye on those with raised voices... And Gordan, the bunny she is watching with distrusting eyes. She might have forgotten about the cooking part by now.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"Most cakes look about this appetizing before they're baked, don't they?" Fuu points out to Souta with a smile, even as she starts doing her part to make the batters. She *was* the one who first suggested a hybrid recipe, so if there are duplicated tasks to be performed, she's more than willing to do her part of those. She may not be the kind of cake-baking expert that Umi is, but she knows how to follow a recipe correctly ... which is apparently more than some people can claim.

And then people start blowing up. Thankfully, they only do so verbally - but Takeo seems to have had that coming. Hibiki, on the other hand, Fuu isn't nearly so sure of.

"I believe there's an event called a 'Polar Bear Plunge' which entails exactly that," Fuu points out in an effort to be helpful. "And it's usually in early January, when conditions are even colder. I think it's most commonly done as a charitable event ... ? I'd have to research the question some more."

For now, though, she focuses on helping mix up ingredients for the batter. On the plus side, she seems capable of keeping straight which batter is which without having to remind herself - a good head for math is invaluable in the kitchen, and math is Fuu's best subject, hands down.

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Misa Amakawa is not being paid enough to put up with this. Fortunately, she's been armed... with a sports whistle. It blows.


Silence falls.

"Everyone, remember, the most important ingredient in a TipTap cake is love! Let's focus on our cakes, okay! You only have a few more minutes before it's time to put them in the oven!"

Behind the employee's back, Souta pulls a face at Kanade, then slinks back over to his table. Ako has been there the whole time, shelling nuts with the sort of grim swath of destruction one might attribute to a reaper.

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Yumi watches Kanade start laughing back and slowly blinks pink eyes at her, inch by inch turning her head towards Hibiki again, and then just as laboriously back. She blinks again for a moment.

...She steps sideways and picks up a bowl to start her work. She's quiet. "...Though..."

She thinks about it. "How many pools are open...?" Pause. "I dunno, it sounds like a really good way to get sick, to me."

But pleasantly she glances at Gordon as she gets the chocolate going, "I remember when you--"

Tweet tweet. "...Oh, right! Love..." Glance to Gordon. "..." She forgets to finish her sentence, and works quietly for the moment with the rest of her group to get this cake shaped up.

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Kanade gave a laugh. "Hear you out?! Why should I when you were completely ignoring me and would have just dragged me there without a second thought!."

She gives a sigh as she tries to calm herself as Fuu speaks. "That's all well and good Hououji-san, but it's hardly a charity, and just because it is doesn't mean I wish to take part in when there's other stuff I rather be doing."

The teacher tweets, making Kanade jump as she remembers what they have to do. "Right, better finish this," she said as she grabs a bowl. "I'll make the icing right now. We should have enough time to ice both cakes." IT wouldn't be the world's fanciest cake, but frankly she needed something else to focus on right now.

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

Gordon looks at hard work. "Quite right! Love is the most important thing, and love is moving quickly and efficiently to make the best food possible!"

He says this with a straight face. A straight, adorable bunny face.

<Pose Tracker> Iona Hikawa [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Iona continues her almonding. Almond almond almond almond.

Then the sudden explosion of yelling. In fact, it seems to rustle Iona's hair just a little bit, and the purple haired girl looks up to look at Kanade, then to Hibiki. "All this competive atmosphere is about swimming in the winter?" After a few moments, Iona leans in to whisper to Hibiki. "I think that sounds pretty neat."

As soon as Kuniko demands bowls, she heads over to grab one for her. Sure, Iona might be wanting to do everything, but that's just her way. She loves to do everything.

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chika half jumps when that whistle belows, but... its better then the yelling! Once the silence falls, she relaxes a bit more and looks around to see how everyone else is taking it.

When people seem to settle back into cooking, she shoots another look at the talking bunny before she steps up with Takeo to finish pouring. She mumbles, "

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kwt8GgAHFg0


It sounds like Team Nanami/Miki/Naru/Umino are the first to the ovens.

Considering they were supposedly making tiramisu, this may not be a victory.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"She's not wrong," Fuu states after Amakawa reminds them that love is the most important ingredient, *and* that time is a factor. She measures, she mixes, she passes bowls and such where they're needed, she measures again, and soon, a measured amount of chocolate batter is being drizzled into the vanilla batter and gently mixed in. "That should be enough ... are they both level, and do the depths match?"

If everything is ready to go - apart from the laughter, which already went - then Fuu heads over to the ovens with whomever's carrying the tins of batter, and takes charge of setting and starting the timer(s).

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Hibiki's building up a head of steam herself - the quiet of half her teammates, the bits of encouragement from those few who agreed that it was a fun idea, all of it just adds to her furor. "Because if you'd let me finish-"

A whistle screams through the argument, as the overseers of this expedition step in. Much like a soccer player getting a yellow card, Hibiki is set to protest this treatment - but like a soccer player catching a glimpse of a red card, she wisely shuts up. Kuniko is rallying them to get the cake properly underway, and she turns sullenly back to the plum compote.

It hasn't burned - but it certainly needs stirring, and she sets to doing just that as the plums meld with sugar and a few seasonings. There's a presence at her side, and a whispered bit of support.

With a small smile, Hibiki's response is quiet but perhaps audible to the next table anyway. "I just thought it'd be fun to do something ridiculous together."

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"I'm not goofing! I'm - " Takeo stops and blinks at Kuniko. "I'm now pouring. I'm pouring." He nods once. TAKE THAT MAGICAL COOKING SCIENCE! He looks to Chika and fires off that winning smile of his.

One of his teeth might have made a DING noise as well, complete wiht glint.

He then says calmly. "Gordon is ... Gordon. After awhile you get used to the Infinity Shenanigans. You should see the Kendo matches." he eye rolls, and continues to do as instructed. He looks at Chika and says, "Juuban? I went there before I got a Kendo Scholarship to Ohtori. Great school." He then looks back to Kuniko. "And I'm not Goofing! I don't know what I'm DOING. All I want is to bake a nice cake, get my credit for it so the Principal doesn't eat me, and maybe bring a piece to my .... " He blushes. "Friend."

One of the Ohtori boys near him calls outm "GIRL FRIEND!"

Takeo doesn't miss a beat and launches a wooden spoon at hte boy who URKS and falls over. "SHUT IT IKARU!" He then clear shis throat and says to the two girls. "My friend."

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Kuniko looks over her shoulder at the whistle and the cackle, but then she throws a generous handful or two of the split almonds into the top of one of the two cake pans they're filling up. It's quite a thick layer, but she explains, "It's going to form a sort of crunchy layer, right? I'll put a few on the other one," toss, "but remember, the one with lots of nuts is the one that goes on top. Right?"

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"Oh. Okay." Chika says slowly, looking towards the rabbit then back towards Takeo. "... Thats normal at Infinity, is it?" She says softly, a hand moving ro run through her hair as she watches Takeo pour the batter in preparation to put it into the oven.

"I was looking at Ohtori. Just couldn't affor-" The zipping of a spoon off towards Ikaru brings a surprised look to her face, and she reaches out with a hand and lightly baps Takeo on the shoulder. Its nothing more then a little press of her fingers. "Don't do that!"

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

By the providence of God, Misa Amakawa was looking the other way when Takeo inflicted culinary harm on another student. She's coming back now, though, with a keen sense for trouble, nose in the air as though it's getting sniffed out an inch at a time.

"Now, now, let's all finish up, ne? We have a special treat for everyone once all the cakes are in the oven~~"

That was sweet enough, but it's followed by a TWEEET! and a (friendly) bark: "TWO MINUTES! TWO MINUTES, EVERYONE!!"

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

"You're about to be in the weeds!" Gordon yells. "GO, GO, GO!"

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

With cold dead eyes in Ikaru's direction Takeo says calmly, "He knows what he did..." Then he calmly picks up a clean spoon and finishes his task. To Chika he says, "Oh yeah. I hear Ohtori has a magicla Horse, but they don't know which of the Horses in the Equstrian Club it is."

Definately not Sparkles. Nooooope.

He then rushes to finish what he was asked to do and looks at Chika and Kuniko. "What else can I do? I really DO wnat to succede. I'm just in over my head."

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Just help me get these things in the oven," Kuniko says, which MAY BE A FOOLISH RISK. To Hibiki she says, "Remember, it has to get ready when these are baked." Or maybe it should be added now!? Kuniko's vision appears to be to bake the layers separately and then stack them once they've cooled... but fate may intervene.

No, not the sad girl with the scythe.

"Come on, hustle!" she urges.

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"It just has to go in the oven." Chika says to Takeo, taking the poured trays and moving to put them in as she glances around to her team. "Time!" She says cheerfully. The talk of magical horses and things had her thinking her leg was being pulled... Except for Gordan the talking rabbit. That had her questioning /everything/.

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"Hurry, hurry," Kanade said as she finished stirring the icing and held out the bowls. "The cakes are probably a bit warm to be icing, but worse case we'll just have to make this more of a glaze."

Her sharp ears can't resist picking up Hibiki's whispered comment and it causes her to pause. She glanced over.

"Wait, that's what the whole thing was about?" she asked. Kanade sighed.

She chewed her bottom lip. "Hibiki...I had no idea...but there are better ways to do something more ridiculous." She hugged herself. "I just...didn't want to do something that could risk us getting sick...especially with Christmas coming up."

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

The MULTIPLE whistles are rattling poor, innocent Saki, but she takes quick, steady breaths. Don't mind, don't mind! Keep your cool, Hyuuga! You're good at that! (She's middling at that, at best.)

But she handles herself well enough, sucking in a final breath and then producing her bowl of dough for a shaping by someone with a better brain than hers. "Here we go! Uhhh, quick!"

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Hibiki's focus, admittedly, has been on what comes after the cakes are baked. At the sharp tweet of the whistle, though, she hurries to turn off the heat and lend what help she can. "Right - pretty sure this stuff just needs to cool for a while. Really hoping the timing works out..."

Sprinting to the ovens with a pan of cake batter? She's definitely good for that. She takes one of the pans from Kuniko, and does a fair dash. Having been engrossed in the plums, she too missed the spoon missile - but Ikaru is easy enough to vault in his current state. In short order, with...relatively little sloppiness, one of the pans is in the oven with the next soon to follow. She's dashing back for the other...

...but an earnest reply stops her short. "...sorry. I figured it was a safe bet - I mean, we've got a few weeks to go, right? But...yeah." She hangs her head - and glances at the bowl. "...did you have to make that now? How am I supposed to stay out of the icing until those cakes are done?

She's in no state to get her team's second pan to the oven - someone else had better step up!

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

"Next step is an oven away, right?" it's a cheerful answer. Yumi mostly keeps listening as it all goes on, but as far as mixing goes, she's got a deft hand for it from her practice in other kinds of things she's made. So she helps out Saki with the next part under Kanade's 'hurry' direction. "Okay, I think we can go!" But she's not very quick herself about moving.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Once their cakes are in the oven and the timers are ticking down, Fuu makes one extra mental note of the baking time and - well, her phone is so deep inside a pocket that she doesn't want to dig for it under her apron, particularly with still-gloved hands. She might get flour or sugar on it (and/or in her pocket for that matter - not catastrophic, but potentially troublesome down the line), so she just looks for other clocks to help measure the time again. "So will we be getting icing or decorations ready while the cakes are baking ... ?"

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.


Misa Amakawa bustles around while students abandon their stations for the ovens, collecting all batter bowls (though the icings are left alone, as are any creams in production). She loads them up on the squeaky-wheeled cart, and the young man who is her coworker appears at the edge of the room to bustle the dishes away to be cleaned by stabler hands (and sounder minds) than middle-school ones.

He also swaps her, cart for cart. This next one doesn't squeak at all, but glides in soundlessly, pure perfection in its craftsmanship. Perhaps that's why it's been chosen to carry hundreds of individual, single-bite servings of a wide variety of cakes.

"All right, children," Misa calls, clapping her hands for attention, TWEEEEETing when she doesn't get it right away. "If you'll please stand at your stations, I'll be coming around with the samples. There is enough here for everyone to have one of each, so don't worry -- no one is getting left out! We'll be sampling the dolce de leche cake first..."

In short order, everyone has a teeny piece of a light champagne cake, filled with caramel, topped with sweet cream, with a tiny bit of lemon syrup drizzled on top.

"Caramel, cream and lemon syrup are all available at the Icing Station," she notes, gesturing dramatically towards a big area in the room at the same moment that her younger coworker whips the white cloth cover off of it like a magician.

<Pose Tracker> Kanade Minamino [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Kanade gives a smile to her friend. "Oh, Hibiki," she mutters. "Let's just find something else to do like ice skating," she gave a laugh, almost forgetting about the competition. "I've never done that before and you can laugh at me falling over several times."

The competition comes to an end and Kanade finds herself staring in awe at the cakes and taking a small bite out of one of the samples. "So, good," she mutters. "Don't you think, Hibiki?"

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Sixty seconds." Takeo says dramatically. "Sixty seconds to cake. Or die." He looks to Ikaru on the floor who has a dazed look and says evenly. "Isn't that right Ikaru?" He'd sip a drink in dramatic fashion, but he didn't have one. Instead he jsut does the unthinkable.

He pays attention. (You can all close your mouths now. It involves food...)

He does this becuase free food is being offered. Happily Takeo takes the offered Cake and noms it in one bite. Happily eating the cake, he looks around and nudges Ikaru. "Can I have yours?"

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Samples? There's no hiding Fuu's soft, "Oooooh," of anticipation, her eyes lighting up behind her glasses. And dolce de leche is high-class cake, or at least it seems to her to have that kind of reputation. When her sample is served, she treats it almost reverently, inhaling the scent, then gently placing the bite of cake in her mouth, not so much 'chewing' as letting it dissolve on her tongue, mashing it just enough to dissolve further into a sweet pulp.

The Icing Station almost goes unnoticed. So does Takeo's faux pas of asking somebody ELSE for their sample.

<Pose Tracker> Gordon [Infinity Institute (S)] has posed.

Gordon is quick to speak up. After all, tasting is just as important as cooking when it comes to being a chef. He speaks up, voice carrying over the room (despite his short height) after Misa speaks: "Make sure that you pay attention to the texture and flavor, and how they mix! And that's true of the cake and the icing! You want to see how the right blend has a powerful effect on the senses!"

<Pose Tracker> Hibiki Houjou [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

There's another alert - and time's up. Self-consciously, Hibiki glances back to her station - but someone got the other pan in, so everything seems to be fine. She breathes a sigh of relief, and grins back to Kanade. "Ice skating, huh? Well, I'm sure I can use all my expertise to..."

She rubs the back of her head, grinning. "...wind up next to you. Funny story-" And then she's cut off by a whistle, and announcement from the teacher. Caught in the middle of the tables, she makes the way back to her team's table. The plum compote is cooling safely, and should be ready in time...she thinks? That's how this kind of thing works, right?...cooking is hard.

And then samples arrive. Cooking is amazing.

Hibiki does her best to savour the cake, but it's a difficult thing - made possible, in the end, by the offer to add a bit more topping. Just a little more sweet cream, and perhaps more than a little caramel drizzle - and her delight is evident as she returns to the group's table. "Wow, this stuff is amazing - oh, right!"

The rabbit's instructions are a challenge, but she does her best. "Really good - hey Kanade, I dare you to make a cupcake like this!"

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Between Hibiki and Chika, everything gets in the oven. Good, Kuniko thinks, leaning a hip against the table. And in comes the cart... of delight. The delivery of dolce de leche comes with a solemn, "Thank you," and she takes a bite of half her sample immediately.

She lets it sit in her mouth for a moment - before she sees Takeo inhale it.

"So which of the flavors in it did you like best," she asks him. Her attention turns then towards the Icing Station, internalizing the possibilities it presents. "Good hustle, by the way, Aki," she tells Chika, not lunging in to finish off her own sample. She has to consider all the permutations of that taste.

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chika had done her thing, slipping back into quiet comfortably. When the samples came out, she would curiously take a few to sample. But when Kuniko speaks to hear she smiles to the woman. "Thank you." She says softly, "I've never worked in a kitchen with this many people before. I'm usd to just pairs."

<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Takeo hears Gordon about half a second after he inhales and asks Ikaru for his sample. When Kuniko asks him which flavor he likes most he says with an innocent shrug. "Um. All. Of. Them?" He fires off that grin at Kuniko hoping it might disarm her as well.

So far he's 0 for 2....

Then he leans over to Chika and bows his head toward her. "Thank you." He says softly and earnestly.

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (8)] has posed.

Saki watches the well-oiled machine that is the TipTap workers quickly cleaning things up, and marvels at the quick efficiency of it all. That's not like home at all. She'd be doing half this stuff! It would be louder, if nothing else.

But she gets a sample of cake and her eyes widen a little, excitedly. She means to savor it, like Mom showed her, and oh no it's gone.

She looks as surprised as anyone.

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

"Samples?" The word is magical as far as Yumi is concerned, and the Infinity high schooler finds herself listening to the tweeting angel of cake. 'First' is a good word as far as this is concerned, and Yumi takes her time with the bite she gets. She glances down.

Lean to Saki, eventually, "...That almost happened with mine too."

<Pose Tracker> Iona Hikawa [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Iona takes her time to relax once the cakes go into the oven, a content sigh can be heard as she takes a moment. "Well, that's over. Good work, everybody." And she's loud enough that it could be also directed to the other teams. But she gets a cake in return! Yay! So she eats at the cake, somewhere in between Kuniko's cake tasting and Takeo's vacuum cleaner eating. She doesn't add anything to it, though. She just takes it as is.

When she's done, she gently puts the plate down and withdraws slightly from the group to get some private time.

<Pose Tracker> Kuniko Saito [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Kuniko looks levelly at Takeo.

"Let me educate you a little, then," she says. Her fork points down at her cake sample and she speaks with a tone of Authority, projecting even fi she's not quite shouting.

"Dolce de leche is a kind of jam made from milk through steady heat with sweetened milk. It's sort of caramelized - but this is being accented, right, with the icings. That's how a lot of these things work. It's like the sauce, it's meant to sort of complement the main - the core. Like... You know, teamwork. Flavor teamwork," Kuniko concludes.

Man, she thinks. I didn't even bring up Malliard.

(Malliard reactions are magic, after all.)

<Pose Tracker> Chika Aki [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chika looks a but surprised by the earnest whisper from Takeo, but she smiles softly. "You are welcome. Cooking is fun! You don't need to approach it like a chore, or like some big scary thing."

When Kuniko goes on to give Tkaeo the long explanation of things, she just smiles and nods along!

<Pose Tracker> Honoka Yukishiro [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> A NEW CHALLENGER ARRIVES https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hrNWLDq0EVM

Misa smiles knowingly at the many and varied reactions, even as she distributes the next round -- a classic choice, and another good light pairing with the caramel cake: vanilla cake, whipped cream filling and icing, studded with strawberries. "We also have fresh fruit and creams available at the decoration station," she explains earnestly, starting to establish a bit of a theme here.

"/Decoration/ station," sniffs a voice, unimpressed. It's feminine. And nasal. And coming from near the floor.

Leading a line of identically delicately clad and coiffeured young women (two by two, they wear blue) is... a goose. She is engorged, replete with mass and with feathers, all of which seem to have been edged, filigreed perhaps, in pure gold.

Her big orange feet make soft slapping sounds on the linoleum as she crosses towards Gordon's position. The goose sniffs again, then cranes her long neck behind her, fixing the single solo student at the front of the line with a beady-eyed stare.

"Ah~ right away, Madame Roquefort," murmurs the girl, hastily raising the goose to counter (and rabbit) level, upon an embroidered pillow apparently conjured just for the occasion.

Once she's at the proper height to stretch out her neck until her face is /right in the rabbit's/, she hisses -- and geese can hiss, make no mistake -- "Gordon la Lupine. I should 'ave known I would find you here. Ze scent... it is unmistakable."

One gets the feeling she isn't referring to all the sugar.

"Surely, zis must be fate! Gather your students, for I challenge oui, on behalf of the Mille-Feuille Academie d'Patisserie, to a /cake decorating match/!"