2. The Cooking Test

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I jumped out of the subway and ambled forward, following the address that was given to me by the manager of the Hobsons Mansion. Just a thought of working in the large, sumptuous mansion was enough to give me the creeps. My mind was giving me alerts that I had made a wrong decision and made myself prone to contempt.

The neighborhood was quiet and calm and had only few residential houses. As I walked forward, I saw an array of beautiful maple trees at one side of the street and some fresh flower decorations on the ground beside them. At the end of the tree-line, a row of lantern lights began on both the sides of the lane. I kept sauntering forward while admiring the bewitching sights around me.

Yellowish, stone wall started as soon as that lane ended and finally I started seeing the giant house, probably the mansion. I moved my gaze all through the area and observed there was no house or building other than that mansion. Hobsons would've bought the entire place. All I saw few, expensive cars that were gleaming under the sunlight. They were parked in front of the gate. Just opposite of the house, fully grown, long palm trees were standing. Their branches were moving in back and forth in slow motion due to light breeze. 

I crossed that stone wall and reached in front of the double gate, took few deep breaths and finally rang the doorbell that was fixed beside the gate. From the outside, this mansion looked like a modern-day royal castle with the magnificent architectural work, palladian windows and warm brown bricks. About two minutes later, the gate opened and a young man, but older than me appeared before me in a uniform.

"Yes?" He asked, observing me from top to bottom.

I cleared my throat, "I'm Sanaya Frances. I came here for the interview for the house cook job. I've already talked with Mr. Brooke."

He paused for a moment, then said, "Please come inside."

I nodded and started taking miniature steps, following him. The patio of the mansion was full of greenery. A beautiful garden that had trimmed, moistened grass and seasonal, full-grown flowers that were scenting the whole place. Fire place was also there, where a set of chairs were arranged in front of it.

The fresh floral scent reached to my nostrils, reducing some of my stress as I walked inside the mansion. We passed the foyer and went to the elevators. Observing all those lavishness and posh environment lessened my confidence on myself. This house resemble to some royal palace and it surely would have experienced and intelligent employees.

Tiny droplets of sweat appeared on my forehead as anxiety began to escalate in me. That man took me to the living room and asked me to wait for Mr. Brooke here. I hesitantly sat on the L-shaped, leather sofa and studied the interiors of the room. The walls here were painted with soft black and had light green strips on it. It had a matching sofa set, center glass table and a wooden, mahogany floor. The fancy lights with the beautiful, crystal chandelier in the center of the ceiling were illuminating the whole room. The velvet, warm blue curtains were covering the large glass windows. 

Fifteen minutes later, a strange man in blazer suit stepped into the room. I immediately rose on my feet. He was maybe around thirty or more, had amber eyes, dark hair and fair skin tone.

"Please keep sitting. I'm Andrew Brooke, the head of the household staff here." He came forward and gestured me to sit down on the seat behind me.

Motioning my head in agreement, I settled down on the same spot, "Hello, sir."

He sat in front of me, smiling, "Nice to meet you, Miss Frances. I've already seen your resume and you know you've a big flaw according to the requirement of this job. But still I called you here because I was curious to know why you still dared to apply here."

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