Notes: This is my first story, so point out any flaws so I can fix them. Flames will be used for cooking.

Also, I'm taking a couple of liberties with canon.

Soma knows his father went to Tootsuki, but does not know he was on the elite ten, or that his dad's name used to be Saiba.

Soma is also aware that his dad traveled to various places around the world, but not why.

Soma will tease people slightly less.

Jouichiro graduated from Tootsuki.

That's all for now.

"Speaking"

'Thoughts'

Scene name/time skip

Emphasis

Indicates Flashback start/end/Brief Memory

Indicates dish names


Outside the Tootsuki Academy entrance:

"Then let me tell you a secret to improve your cooking…" the voice said over the phone. It was Yukihira Jouichirou, talking to his son before Soma would take the transfer exam to enter a culinary school where only 10% of the students graduate.

Soma lifted an eyebrow in curiosity, though he said nothing.

"The secret to being a good chef is to meet a person you want to devote all your cooking to."

'Like you and mom' Soma thought. "Got it." he said before hanging up. He didn't really understand how he was supposed to do that, or even care that much about doing so. He was already a skilled cook, and he was about to get into the same place his dad learned at; yet he didn't cook like every dish he made was for that special someone. Instead he focused on a specific goal: surpassing his father.

Walking past several people with guards and servants around them and onto the massive grounds the red haired teen let himself get lost in thought, 'All these people are here to take the entrance exam? Dad wasn't kidding when he said it's the top school in Japan.-' when he bumped into the side of an occupied bench. Sheepishly he stated "Sorry about that."

"Don't worry about it," the rich looking kid, who introduced himself as Yoshiaki Nikaido said. "Are you also taking the entrance exam?"

After confirming that he was, Soma and Yoshiaki talked briefly about their families' restaurants Yoshiaki insulted Restaurant Yukihira for being a plebeian establishment. One uppercut later Soma walked past the jeering crowd of spectators towards the exam site.

Exam site: a little while later

After reaching the exam site Soma and the other applicants waited for a couple of minutes for the examiner to show. She was dressed in what Soma was guessing was the Tootsuki school uniform and introduced herself as Nakiri Erina, and stated that to enter the school the applicants each had to make a dish she felt was satisfactory using eggs as the main ingredient. Cue the fleeing of the less confident applicants i.e. everyone other than Soma. "The main ingredient is the egg, right? Are there any other conditions?"

'This guy has to be either an idiot or insane. Probably insane.' Both Erina and her aid Hisako, who brought out the ingredient table/prep station, thought. Aloud Erina stated that as long as eggs were the main ingredient no other restrictions applied. "Who is this guy?" she asked, turning to her aide.

After quickly looking through the files Hisako found his. "His name is Yukihira Soma. His family runs a special-of-the-day restaurant. He doesn't seem like much."

Meanwhile, with the only person there to cook, 'How about Yukihira Secret Menu item #8? Yeah, that should work.' "The secret to being a good chef is to meet a person you want to devote all your cooking to." Soma paused for a moment, recalling the words he heard not even an hour ago. 'Maybe… maybe I should try cooking like I did for Mom, before she died.'

"If you're just going to stand there and waste my time I'll fail you right now!" the sharp voice broke Soma from his musings.

"Sorry 'bout that. I had to pick what dish to make." With that, the male began cooking by placing some chicken wings in a large pot of boiling water, followed by setting the rice to cook, and lastly scrambling some eggs.

With everything needing a bit of time to cook, Erina had the chance to ask what both her and Hisako were thinking, "What are you making?"

"You can't tell?" he replied in a slightly teasing, slightly arrogant tone; causing Erina to develop a twitch above her eye. "It's Transforming Furikake Gohan (Transforming Seasoned Rice)"

"Trans..forming?" Hisako echoed, her tone laced with confusion.

"You'll see in a moment. It's almost ready." Soma replies as he puts the bowl of white rice on a tray next to a small dish seemingly filled with the scrambled eggs.

'He's mocking me?!' Erina thought, appearing visibly insulted. "This exam is over! This isn't worth any more of my time."

"I never said it was done yet, did I?" Soma responded while he finished setting up the tray before dumping the contents of the small dish onto the rice, revealing it to be scrambled egg and a gold, almost honey colored really, jelly-like substance that began melting onto the egg and rice.

'It melted?' Erina thought as she observed the last of the odd concoction dissolve onto the rice. 'An aspic!' she realized as the steam from the rice carried the scent of the gelatinous chicken broth, begrudgingly impressed that an apparently uneducated chef knew how to make something like that. "...I suppose a bite won't hurt."

"Erina-sama!" Hisako cried, shocked at the sudden change.

"Dig in, examiner Nakiri." Soma stated as he held out the tray; the small, seemingly content, smile and genuine warmth in his voice briefly catching the pair off guard.

As Erina took her first bite she felt as if she was laying in a bed made of angel feathers, soft and warm. Safe, in a way. Almost like when she was young, before he came. As she returned to reality, she realized she was so caught up in the taste of the food that she didn't examine it at all. She took a second bite, analyzing every aspect of it she possibly could, trying to find some inexcusable flaw she could use to fail Yukihira Soma.

"Well, examiner Nakiri? Is it delicious or disgusting?" Said chef asked in a tone of curiosity mixed with slight amusement, no doubt due to the fact she had to take more than the single bite she said she would take.

"It's not delicious,but…" here the blonde hesitated, as if she were trying to force herself to not say what she was about to "it wasn't disgusting either. It was… good. You pass, if only barely." Then her tone and stance shifted to one that only echelons of society could ever use, "You will need to do better than this plebeian dish if you want to survive at Tootsuki for long."

Soma, for the second time that day, actually decided to listen to someone else's advice. "Happy to serve!" he exclaimed, while simultaneously making plans to improve even more in the month before school would actually begin. He also decided that the sensation of warmth he felt when Nakiri said his cooking was good was just pride.


Finally managed to produce a chapter. Read, review, and please give suggestions on what needs improvement. I hate producing a flawed chapter just as much as you hate reading one.

Also, a quick thanks to Laury Rose, the author of an awesome Shokugeki no Soma story titled Misunderstanding, for the advice they gave me; and a quick thanks to Zancrow, whose fic Nouvelle actually gave me the inspiration to make this into a proper story.