God's Tongue Meets Devil's Son
I read a few fanfics where Erina and Soma don't start off as enemies and actually go through canon as friends and allies, and eventually, after reading the manga more, I decided to create my own fanfic. I hope you all like it and wouldn't say no to someone to help me with ideas, as this will diverge from canon starting from episode one.
Note: There will be spoilers for those not that caught up with the manga.
Disclaimer: I don't own Shokugeki no Soma.
For Nakiri Erina, Tenth Seat on the Tōtsuki Culinary Academy's Elite 10, known throughout the culinary world as God's Tongue, her life was a hard and lonely one. Sure she had her Grandfather, and while her Cousin and Aunt got on her nerves, they were still somewhat close, but one thing she seemed to never have, was a friend. Even Hisako, her personal assistant, eventually began to keep a certain distance as they got older and she focused on her work. Many people saw her as a privileged princess that reigned over the world of fine cuisine, but only her Grandfather knew of the one person who caught her attention and earned her respect.
"Grandfather?" asked a young Erina, "Where are we going? Am I going to be doing another tasting for a client?"
The old but still extremely spry, Senzaemon Nakiri, chuckled at his granddaughter's tone as the two of them drove through the streets of Japan in one of the Nakiri family's cars. He had planed this outing for his granddaughter's benefit, knowing she had been working very hard at her job as a taster and critic for high-end food establishments, and thought she could use a nice break.
"No, Erina," said the Headmaster of the Tootsuki Culinary Academy, "we're just going to visit an old friend."
"Old friend?" asked Erina.
"Why yes," said Senzaemon, "he runs a small family diner in Sumire Town."
"A diner?" said Erina with a raised eyebrow. She wondered why her grandfather would bother heading to a commoner restaurant in such a small town.
"I think you'll be pleasantly surprised, Erina," said Senzaemon with a mysterious smile.
"If you say so, grandfather," said Erina as she looked out the window at the passing buildings.
Soon their car pulled up in front of a diner with letters spelling out the name 'Yukihira' emblazoned on the restaurant's awning in white letters.
'Yukihira?' thought Erina, "Grandfather, is this really the place?"
"It is indeed, Erina," said the man as their chauffer opened the doors, allowing them to climb out, "This place is run by a Tootsuki Alumni who we've come here to see."
"An Alumni owns this place?" asked Erina.
"One does indeed, Erina-chan," said a familiar voice, causing the young blond girl to perk up and smile as she saw a familiar man with red hair and a goatee walking out of the diner.
"Saiba-sama!" exclaimed Erina happily.
"Good to see you in such high spirits, kiddo," chuckled the former Second Seat of the Tootsuki Elite 10, "and Senzaemon-dono, to what do I owe this unexpected visit?"
"I had some free time and thought it would be nice to see how you were doing, Jōichirō," said Senzaemon, "plus, I thought Erina here would like to meet that son you've been telling Dojima about."
"Son?" said Erina in surprise.
"Hey pops!" exclaimed a boy's voice from inside, "Today's the day! I'm going to make you acknowledge my cooking!"
A young boy with red hair like Jōichirō ran out of the diner ran out wearing the same outfit as the Tootsuki Alumni with the addition of a white bandanna tied around his arm. He stopped short when he saw the two Nakiris standing with his father and looked to him in confusion.
"Sorry Soma," said Jōichirō, "We have some important guests today, so I'm going to have to postpone our match."
"Aww," pouted the boy before turning to Erina with a smile, "Hi. What's your name?"
"Nakiri Erina," said the girl haughtily, expecting him to be in awe over her reputation.
"I'm Yukihira Soma," said the boy, "I'm the Sous Chef here at Yukihira's."
"What is your relation to Saiba-sama?" asked Erina.
"What are you talking about?" asked Soma, "Who's this Saiba person you're talking about?"
"What are you talking about?" asked Erina, "You called him 'Pops' earlier when you ran out."
"You mean my dad?" asked Soma, "Why are you calling him 'Saiba?' His name's Yukihira Jōichirō."
'Saiba-sama changed his name?' thought Erina in surprise.
"Oi Soma," called out Jōichirō before she could question further, "I need you in the kitchen!"
"Coming!" exclaimed Soma as he ran inside frantically.
Erina chuckled as she and her grandfather found seats in the diner, glancing around at the other happy patrons. Perhaps there was something to be said of small family restaurants like these, where people could eat and relax without having to worry about pomp and circumstance.
"You seem to be having a good time Erina," said her grandfather.
"Well, it's nice to see Saiba-sama again," said Erina, "and I never knew he had a son."
Senzaemon chuckled as Jōichirō brought out two plates of food and set them in front of the two Nakiris.
"Here you go," said the former Second Seat, "compliments of the house."
Erina smiled and eagerly took a bite of the food, allowing her God's Tongue to fully enjoy the depth and range of flavors that the dish contained.
"So," said Jōichirō, "what do you think?"
"It's quite good," said Senzaemon.
"It's wonderful," said Erina, "Saiba-sama doesn't disappoint."
"Well, I hate to burst your bubble," chuckled Jōichirō, "but I didn't cook this time."
"Then who did?" asked Erina.
"Soma-kun," said Jōichirō, "come out here for a minute."
Jōichirō's son came running out in a hurry, his headband now tied around his head.
"I'd like you to meet your chef for this afternoon," said Jōichirō.
"You made this?" said Erina in surprise.
"Of course," said Soma with pride, "did you like it?"
"Yes," said Erina, "it was excellent."
"Soma," said Jōichirō, "why don't you take your break a bit early and entertain Erina-chan here."
"Ok!" said Soma.
"Grandfather?" asked Erina, getting a chuckle from the old man.
"Go on," he said, "I have some things to discuss with Jōichirō anyway."
Erina nodded and Soma led her out of the Diner. The two of them walked through the Shopping District for a while, with Soma showing the Nakiri princess the shops and attractions.
"So what do you think of our Shopping District?" asked Soma with a smile.
"I admit it is quite entertaining," said Erina with a smile.
"Right?" said Soma with a smile.
"This is the most fun I've had in a while," said Erina.
"Well," said Soma, "what're friends for?"
"Friends?" said Erina with surprise.
Soma nodded, "Of course. Don't you want to be friends?"
"I think I'd like that," said Erina with a smile.
"Erina," said Senzaemon as he walked up, "it is time for us to be going. Thank you for your time, Jōichirō."
"Always a pleasure, Senzaemon-dono," said Jōichirō with a respectful nod.
"Come back and visit soon!" said Soma as the Nakiris got into their car and drove off.
Erina was brought out of her remembrance by Hisako lightly shaking her shoulder, reminding her where she was.
"Erina-sama?" asked her Personal Assistant and Aide.
"It's nothing Hisako," said Erina, "I was just lost in thought for a moment."
The Nakiri princess nodded to several attendants around her and they wheeled several carts of ingredients into the next room, with her following behind. Facing the assembled students she looked them over with a cool expression.
"I have been entrusted with today's entrance examination," she told them, "My name, is Nakiri Erina, "If any of you wish to be admitted to this Academy, you must do one thing."
Picking up an egg from one of the carts she turned and held it up for all to see, "With eggs as the main ingredient, you will make one dish. If that dish can satisfy my palette, then and only then will you be admitted into Tootsuki Academy."
Seeing the horrified looks all the gathered students had from hearing the details of her daunting challenge, the Tenth Seat allowed a smirk to grace her features.
"In addition," she stated, "I am giving all of you one minute to withdraw from this examination if you so desire."
The stampeding hoard of students trying to escape the hall and the all but futile task of creating a dish that would meet the expectations of the God Tongue herself brought a smile to her face. Erina was about to turn and leave when Hisako caught her attention.
"Erina-sama," said Hisako, "someone has chosen to remain."
Erina turned, curious to see who this courageous, or possibly foolish, student was and her eyes widened when she saw a familiar redhead with a white headband tied around his arm.
I hope you like the beginning of this fanfic. Please let me know what you think.