006_Business meeting 2
It's a beautiful day.
The sky was clear and blue, and the breeze tickling my cheeks felt good.
So why do I have to pull a fucking heavy cart to the merchant's guild. Something pisses me off.
I thought about hiring someone to pull the cart, but it doesn't seem like the best idea at the moment to have too much contact with people.
Now I have to figure out what to do, whether to settle down here in Hajime, or go to another town, or find some friends.
I just want to deliver this heavy white sugar to the merchant guild and be free.
"Good morning . Grose-sama."
"Good morning, Umbrella-san."
Behind the Merchants' Guild Hall is an area of large warehouses, and I was directed by the Merchants' Guild to a corner of the warehouse district.
Even though it's a warehouse district, it's not deserted, and there are people and things moving around all the time.
It's as busy as the logistics warehouse of an online retailer on Earth.
"I've never seen a cart like that before, what's on the wheels... well, this one has just the right amount of elasticity... well, well... ?"
"What? Yeah, that's my hometown. It's so far away I don't even know where I am."
"Mmmm, I see... by the way, can I sell this cart?"
[You seem to have taken a liking to the car, but are tires rare?]
[He seems to be interested in the rubber worn on the rear car tires.]
[Rubber. Are there no rubbers in this world?]
[There is rubber, but it is not used for tires, etc.]
"I'm sorry, but I can't give you this."
"No, no, I'm sorry to ask such a strange question."
After that, I dropped the white sugar off at one of the warehouses, got my payment and proof of sale, and was about to leave the Commercial Guild when Umbrella-san took me to a business meeting space to talk.
The commercial guild will take good care of the rickshaws, so I've left them to them.
"I'm sorry to stop you."
"So, I was wondering if you could do me a favor..."
Umbrella-san's request was for more deliveries of white sugar.
Apparently, when he distributed the product to one of the leading merchants in the town of Hajime, it was well received in the town and caught the attention of a merchant who happened to come from another town and said that 200 kilograms was not enough.
So he asked me to deliver an additional 500 kilograms.
[Master, if you deliver too much at once, there is a risk of attracting the attention of existing sugar merchants, so you should be cautious.]
I think Ins's suggestion is a good one, and I told him that I will reply at a later date because I don't have much white sugar in stock at the moment.
[I'm sure you've heard of it, but I've never heard of it.
[I see, handling several kinds of products will increase sales, and more importantly, it will be a risk hedge against one kind of product. Yeah, let's do that.]
"I can't give you an answer on white sugar right now, but I can give you some other products. Unfortunately, we don't have it today, but we can bring it this afternoon."
"...What kind of product is it?"
Oh, I didn't think anything of it.
[We can sell salt, but what about wheat or rice?]
[Salt is probably not a problem, but I don't think grain can be sold for that much, and rice is rarely eaten in this area.]
[Then what about pepper?]
[Pepper is a rare commodity, so it should be fine.]
"It's salt and pepper, but I'm sure you'll get a good price for it in this town."
"Like salt, pepper is a rare commodity that rarely comes in stock. Can you also sell those two products exclusively to our guild?"
"I think that's up to Umbrella-san, don't you?"
"Haha, you're right. I'll do my best."
Thus, I went to the merchants' guild with salt and pepper at noon.
Before returning to the inn, we went to a deserted place.
[Is there any sign of life around here?]
[There is no one within visual range who can see the Master.]
I'll have Ins take care of the perimeter and put the car in storage.
If you continue to pull the cart back, the innkeeper will take your money, or worse, the cart itself may be stolen.
The main reason, though, is to get the cart out of the room and load the goods.
Fortunately, the room itself is quite spacious, even with the rear carriage out.
[Master, are we going to load it to capacity?]
[Two hundred kilograms of salt, one hundred kilograms of black pepper, and fifty kilograms of white pepper should be enough to pay for itself, so we won't have to do business for a while.]
[I've made more than one hundred and eighty thousand yen today alone, and more than two hundred and thirty thousand yen from two hundred kilograms of white sugar, so I could live on that for several months.]
[Well, you can't go wrong with money, and with millions of dollars, if something happens, it'll be gone in a flash.]
We bought the goods and loaded them into the cart.
When you finish loading, order lunch at the inn's restaurant.
It's a relatively expensive inn, but the food is not very good.
This is also the case with skewers sold on the street, and I don't recall ever having eaten anything in this world that I could consider delicious.
It may sound good to say that the taste of the ingredients is well preserved, but the reason may be that seasonings such as salt and pepper are scarce, so their distribution is low and the seasoning is very thin.
If I could distribute seasonings cheaply and stably, the food situation in Hajime's town would improve, but I can't do that, at least not now, because I would have to distribute a huge amount and it would make me stand out.
After lunch, we left the inn immediately, but instead of going to the Merchant's Guild, we wandered around the city.
Although it is called the town of Hajime, the town is quite large and a few days are not enough to see it all.
[What's the specialty of this town?]
["The specialty is the meat of a demon called Kaukau.]
[Demon meat is your specialty?]
[Yes, cowcows are demons but they don't attack people so they are easy to raise. That is why animal husbandry is very popular in Hajime town.]
You'd be surprised how many species of demons don't attack people.
I thought demons were supposed to attack people.
However, while meat is a specialty, the food is not very good.
Well, if you want to eat good food, you can buy your own meat and cook it with steak sauce or curry or stew base from [[mail order]].
You can also buy meat through [[mail order]]... but since it's a skill I have to use it.
I lived alone, so I could cook a little.
Don't underestimate me, I can slice a fish into three pieces and even peel a radish!
[Ins, can I rent an apartment? I don't mind renting a house, but it would be nice to have a space where I can do my own cooking and have a shower and toilet].
The inn had a shower room and toilet, but no kitchen.
If you want to cook for yourself, it's best to rent a room.
[A kitchen, toilet, and shower room are unlikely to be found in an apartment. However, you may be able to find one in a rental house.]
[Where can I rent a house?]
[Much of the real estate is handled by the Merchant's Guild.]
[If you're renting a house, it's best to have an escort with you. Master doesn't seem to be good at rough stuff.]
You're right, I'm not very good at rough stuff.
I know it's impossible to think of a battle with a rabbit.
[Do we really need an escort?]
[It's a relatively safe town, but not as safe as Master's hometown.]
Compared to Japan, their life expectancy is much lower, so they need guards to keep them safe...?
Yeah, I need it. I can't fight.
But how do you know which escorts you can trust? You can get some idea of their combat power by looking at their status, but not their personality.
It is still easy to understand the joy, anger, sadness, and sorrow of a person, but it is difficult to read the personality of a person.
[How can we find the guards?]
[You can request an escort from the Adventurer's Guild, purchase a battle slave, or recruit one from the general public, but each has its advantages and disadvantages.]
[long and short?]
[First of all, in the case of adventurers, their combat power is guaranteed by their rank, but there is no way to know if they will accept requests, and since they are adventurers, there is a certain probability that some of them will behave badly. In addition, there is a disadvantage that the master's information is easily leaked to the outside world].
That's to be expected. We need to judge the character of the adventurer we're hiring.
[In the case of slaves, those with a certain level of combat power will be more expensive, and those with high combat power will rarely become slaves in the first place.]
If your combat power is high, you'll have a lot of places to work, so if you're a slave, the odds are good that you're not.
[There is no possibility of attracting people from the general public even if the master invites them. If the conditions are good, there is a possibility, but it is unlikely due to the low recognition of the master on the recruiting side.]
I don't know who you are, but if I were to apply to the general public, people would be suspicious and not take me seriously.
[Adventurers if you want an immediate escort, slaves if you want a continuous escort. What do you think, Ins?]
[I agree with the Master.]
Then it's settled. For the time being, we'll stick with adventurers and slaves.
As we were talking, we were approaching the merchant's guild, so we took a cart full of goods out of sight and headed for the merchant's guild.
You'll be able to find a lot more than just a few of them in the marketplace.
"Hendler-sama, we've been expecting you."
"Umbrella-san, good to see you this morning."
After a quick greeting, we were ushered into a business meeting space in a warehouse where we were shown salt, black pepper and white pepper, and when Umbrella-san saw the white pepper, his eyes went black and white.
"That would be two hundred kilograms of salt, one hundred kilograms of black pepper, and fifty kilograms of white pepper."
"This is white pepper... the real thing..."
"There's only a little white pepper this time, is it rare in this town?"
"It's not just rare! I've been working in this guild for over a decade and this is the first time I've seen white pepper!"
"I see, so here's the deal: I'll sell all of this to you. We won't sell them to any other merchant, so we'd like you to give us a special price for them."
"Of course! I will give you a value that is within my power!"
Umbrella-san got excited when he saw the white pepper.
Umbrella-San gave a purchase price of 3,500 yen per kilogram of salt, 20,000 yen per kilogram of black pepper, and a whopping 30,000 yen per kilogram of white pepper.
"I'm sorry, but we paid more for the better quality salt, but salt itself is not that rare, so this is the price we paid. However, the price for black pepper and especially white pepper is the best we can offer."
Well, I don't think there's anything good to be done here.
Besides, I'm not losing any money at all, so I'll do Umbrella-san a favor and make a quick decision.
"I'll take that price. I just have one request."
"Thank you, sir. So what's the favor?"
"I need an escort, but I don't have any connections in this town, so I was hoping that Umbrella-san could help me."
"Well, if that's the case, I have no objection. I will be happy to assist you."
"Thank you . I would like to purchase a slave for my escort. I'd like to hire an adventurer to escort and train the slave until he becomes a commodity."
"Then I will write a letter of introduction to the slaver and adventurer guilds I know. Please wait a moment while I prepare the payment and documents."
"Yes, it's nice to meet you."