Karma -> Carm
Volume 2 Chapter 21
The next day.
I went to the store before opening time.
“Good morning, everyone.” [Ryouma]
“Good morning, Boss!” [Carm & Karla]
“Good morning!” [Everyone else]
“Thank you for yesterday. Thanks to you guys, I was able to rest well.” [Ryouma]
“That’s great.” [Marie]
“Overworking is bad for your health, so please take care of yourself.” [Karla]
“Boss, you’re working too hard, you know? When we heard how much you’ve been working, we were shocked.” [Li Ling]
“You actually built this store in 10 days. That’s just crazy. If you keep up that pace, you’ll die early, you know?” [Fei]
“I’ll be careful.” [Ryouma]
“Please do so.” [Karla]
“Even if the Boss acts like an adult, he’s still a kid after all.” [Jeanne]
“Even if you’re an adult, it’s not good to push yourself.” [Fina]
Looks like I caused my employees to worry. But actually, thanks to them being here, I didn’t push myself that much. Still, I’m grateful that they were worried over me.
Because of that, I was quite happy. And so, I gave them my thanks, then I headed to the kitchen.
“Celma-san, are you here?”
“Is there anything you need, Boss?” [Celma]
When I got to the kitchen, the only cook of this store, Celma, was there. Our cook seems to be making some kind of soup. Seeing me, Celma-san stopped stirring, and walked towards me.
“Yesterday, I rested and I went out of the town for a bit. During that time, I managed to hunt some game, and so I thought I’d bring those back as souvenirs. I drained its blood right after killing it, then I froze it, so its quality should be good.” [Ryouma]
As I said that, I took out the meat from my ‘Item Box’.
“My, my, thank you very much. This is… horn rabbit, right? Please put this in the fridge for now, I’ll serve it to everyone during lunch.” [Celma]
“Thank you.” [Ryouma]
As I said that, I went to put all of the meat in the fridge.
“Ara, ara, there’s quite a lot, huh?” [Celma]
“It’s because I was able to spot a herd of them.” [Ryouma]
“I’m really glad that we have this refrigerator. It’s really convenient.” [Celma]
“Really? I mean, it certainly is convenient, but…” [Ryouma]
I have to put up the barrier once every day, so it’s actually quite annoying. If I became better at barrier magic, then the duration of the barrier would also increase, but… well, it is better now that when I’d first using it, where each barrier only lasted for an hour.
“It is! It’s really convenient! Normally, when there’s an ingredient that I won’t be able to use immediately, I’d be left with no option other than to just throw it away! Vegetables are one thing, but as for meat, I really have to throw them away immediately! It’s easy for it to go bad during hot days, and summer, but then, there’s also the fact that it’s to get sick from it. But with this refrigerator, even if I have plenty of ingredients, even if its meat, I can put them away, and use them for tomorrow. Like this, not only will I not waste food, we can also save money!” [Celma]
“Ah, now that you mention it… When I was in the forest, I hunted when I needed to eat, and before the excess meat went bad, I gave them to the slimes. So I guess I forgot about that.” [Ryouma]
“The slimes are also quite convenient. They eat the trash and the bones for me. They’ve really helped me a lot.” [Celma]
We chatted like that for a bit, then I put up the barrier for the fridge again. After which, I left the kitchen.
When I got out, Karla-san seemed to have some business with me, as she called me.
“You want to increase the number of employees?” [Ryouma]
“The current number is enough for now, but when our branches start to increase we’ll have a problem if we only start raising new employees then. At the very least, couldn’t we start raising up a manager, or someone who will become a key player in the store?” [Karla]
“That’s true… I don’t have any objections regarding that. In the end, I’ll have to leave it to Carm-san and the others to raise new employees. But the thing is, in our store the biggest problem is the slave magic user. To our store, cleaner slimes are indispensable, which means slave magic users are also needed. So the problem is, how are we going to hire a trustworthy slave magic user, who won’t run off with the slimes or smuggle them?” [Ryouma]
“Normally you’d go to the tamer guild for that, but… Right now, the tamer guild is a suspect, so…” [Karla]
“Right… regarding that, there hasn’t been any problem, has there?” [Ryouma]
“None. No one has come since then. But I don’t think they’re going to give up after just one failure.” [Karla]
“… For the meantime, let’s be careful. I’ll try thinking about the slave magic user. As for your side, I don’t mind if you add some people you appraise highly.” [Ryouma]
“Thank you very much.” [Karla]
After that, I left the store, and decided to go to the abandoned mine. On the way, I met Jeff-san. Today, he isn’t wearing any armor, and he also doesn’t have his spear with him. He walked over to where I am, while he stuffed his cheeks with skewered meat. Is it his day off?
“Oomph! Mmm… *gulp, isn’t that Ryouma?” [Jeff]
“Good morning, Jeff-san. Is it your day off today?” [Ryouma]
“I’m just tired because I’ve been fighting every day. Are you working today?” [Jeff]
“I’m going to the abandoned mine to run my rounds.” [Ryouma]
“By abandoned mine, you mean the place where we hunted?” [Jeff]
“Yes. I’ve become the manager of that place. So I have to patrol it at fixed intervals, and make sure that no magical beasts are making a nest out of it.” [Ryouma]
“You were doing a job like that? You’re an adventurer, a laundromat, and a manager, aren’t you busy?” [Jeff]
“Well, I’ve already left the laundromat to my employees, so I don’t have anything to do right now. I can also rest freely as an adventurer. And it’s not like I actually have to act as a manager for the mine every day. So until the store expands, I won’t be busy.” [Ryouma]
“Then I guess it’s fine, but… Oh, right. Want some? I’ll treat you.” [Jeff]
As Jeff-san said that, he took out his bag of skewered meat.
“Then, I’ll take one stick… Mn!” [Ryouma]
When I took a bite, what I tasted wasn’t herb or salt, but rather the stinging taste of seasoned meat. In this world, things like sugar and spices are expensive. Because of that, salt is generally the only ingredient used to make food taste better. But… this is delicious! It feels like it’s lacking in some parts, but… nevertheless, this is good!
“It’s delicious!” [Ryouma]
“Right? I bought it from that cart over there. They used a little bit of spice, so it’s a little expensive, but it’s delicious. There’s a plaza over there, so go take a seat and try tasting some.” [Jeff]
I followed Jeff-san, and entered a side street. The place we went to, was a plaza with a bench and a well. I took a seat on the bench as I observed the area. It’s kind of like a park.
“Didn’t you just start a new store? And now, you’re already thinking of starting another one?” [Jeff]
“It’s because the guild master of the merchant guild and my employees told me to think about it. It’s not like I’m planning to start one right away… besides, there’re some problems.” [Ryouma]
“What? Is there something bothering you?” [Jeff]
“The new shop is going to be at a different town, because of that I’ll end up having to travel frequently. But in order to make my store, it’s important for there to be someone who can manage the slimes.” [Ryouma]
“That’s not something you should worry about. Just go the tamer guild.” [Jeff]
“Well the guild master of the tamer guild seems to be hostile to me, so he might do something strange. In fact, there were some thugs who were paid to make a mess in my store… The guard I employed, managed to stop them, but we think the one who hired those thugs is the guild master of the tamer guild.” [Ryouma]
“You, did you do something bad?” [Jeff]
“Nothing in particular. I just went to register with the duke family’s young lady… and so from the looks of things, he dislikes me for having a close relationship with the duke’s household, despite me being like this.” [Ryouma]
“Ahh… so it’s that kind of guy. Those kinds who brandish their position and connections are such a pain.” [Jeff]
“Indeed. Moreover, he’s the kind of guy who doesn’t care about people below him. Putting it bluntly, he’s not someone who can be trusted. There’s no way I’d hire someone from the guild of a man like that.” [Ryouma]
As I said that, I bit into my skewered meat. Jeff-san finished his own set, and as he brought out a second set, he said this.
“Then in that case, I have a suggestion.” [Jeff]
“Yeah! I’m not good at stuff that involves one’s head, as I can’t do anything else aside from fighting. Because of that, I can’t help you out when it comes to business and stuff, but when it comes to people, then that’s a different story. If you don’t want to hire someone from the tamer guild, then how about hiring someone from the slums?” [Jeff]
“Someone from the slums, huh?’ [Ryouma]
“That’s right. The people from the slums are poor, but it’s not like they can’t do anything. I’m also someone who used to be from the slums, but I’m living as an adventurer now, right? In the same way, I know many people who can use slave magic.
There are all sorts in the slums. There are people who are useless, and then, there are also those who are too skilled, was conspired against, and ended up in the slums. Isn’t it fine if you hire those kind of guys?
This town is a mining town, so there’re more jobs here compared to other towns. So, while it’s not possible to live comfortable, people aren’t being driven into a corner either. Because of that, there aren’t many who would commit a crime. And there are actually plenty who can be considered decent people. And more than anything, these people have a strong sense of camaraderie with those who’ve also come from the slums. Unless you do what the public office did, and try to drive down the salary, I don’t think they’ll betray you.
The people of the slum also want a stable life. That’s why, if you want to hire, then you can hire immediately. As for whether you can form a trusting relationship, well that depends on you.” [Jeff]
Is this what you call, having the scales fall from your eyes? Now that he mentions it, the guild is more of something like an agency. As long as you have an intermediary, then it doesn’t matter. I can look for people by myself, and put them through the merchant guild instead.
“Try thinking about it. Once you’ve made up your mind, I’ll act as your middleman. Even till now, my face is still useful around the slums, you know?” [Jeff]
“Thank you very much. I’ll think about it.” [Ryouma]
As I said that, I finished eating my skewered meat. I give my thanks to Jeff-san, and head towards the abandoned mine. On the way, I thought about the discussion we just had.
It’s not bad, right? Rheinbach-sama also employed the slum people to clean the latrine pits. So at the very least, they’re not unhireable, and there’s also the possibility that there might be someone trustworthy there.
While I was thinking that, I reached the abandoned mine. I immediately set off to start the production of waterproof cloths. I didn’t have any problem even with 50, so I guess I can do 70 today.
I fix the cloth on the workbench, then I leave it to the sticky slimes.
When that ended, I started the training. The sticky slimes, poison slimes, acid slimes, and scavenger slimes are all fine, but… it doesn’t seem like the bloody slime is made for combat. Because its body is closer to liquid than the others, its attacks have absolutely no power behind it. It doesn’t have any abilities for fighting either… and because its movements are so slippery, its first movement is fast, so it looks like it can at least run, but… is this something to be happy about? For the meantime, I guess I’ll spend some time observing it.” [Ryouma]
Then, there’s the metal slime and the iron slime. They’re both hard, but because I’ve only just recently tamed them, they’re still not able to move their bodies well. Turning their body into a tentacle also seems to be impossible for them… If they were able to, then I could’ve made them harden along with it and do all sorts of things, but… yeah, I guess I’ll also have to spend some time with these guys.
As for the earth slimes and the dark slime, they’re all able to use magic.
The earth slimes can use ‘Rock’, ‘Break Rock’ and a currently still weak ‘Earth Needle’.
As for the dark slime, it can cause its surrounding to become darker with ‘Darkness’, and it can also shoot out a ball of darkness with ‘Dark Ball’. It’s something I rarely use, but it’s a kind of magic that sucks out one’s life force. Even if you say ‘suck’ though, it won’t replenish your life. The magic that can accomplish that, is a mid-level magic called ‘Drain’.
These guys also move like normal slimes. So I’ll have them train their magic, then I’ll have them train their movements a bit, afterwards, I guess I could let them take the role of a gunner?
It’s also essential to have some live combat experience when using attack magic, so yeah… these guys will also take some time.
I’ve already confirmed that the earth slimes can use ‘Rock’ and ‘Break Rock’, so I guess I’ll try teaching them ‘Create Block’.
As I tried to teach them that, they were able to do it after several tries. I was a bit surprised at their learning speed, but I think it’s good that they learn fast.
As for the dark slime… I guess I’ll have it practice the ‘Dark ball’? I’m also not that well-versed at dark magic, so… I guess I’ll train alongside it.
After that, while letting the cloths dry, I trained with the earth slimes, and at the same time, we also made some building stones. I had the newly made building stones be carried into a tunnel for safekeeping. I’ll use them when I make a house next time.
And then, just like usual, when the cloths finished drying, I retrieved it, and left. When I got back to the lodging, I visited the duke’s room.
“Welcome. Ryouma-san.” [Elia]
“You came.” [Rheinbach]
“Is there something?” [Rheinhart]
“There was something I wanted to discuss for a bit.” [Ryouma]
“Oh? What is it?” [Rheinbach]
I talked about what I’d discussed today with Jeff-san. Hearing that, they seemed to think it wasn’t a bad idea.
I don’t mind if you hire the slum people. That is, if you can trust them. But then, you do have an intermediary, so as long as that guy is trustworthy, then I don’t think there’ll be any problem.” [Rheinbach]
“Even if it’s a little, like this, the slum’s job prospects will also increase, so I’m a little happy. Only, I think it’s better if you stick with the guild. It may not be illegal, but because of how money you’re making, it wouldn’t be strange for people to try to find some dirt on you. At that time, the less holes you have, the better.” [Rheinhart]
“That’s certainly true. But, could I pass it through the merchant guild, instead of the tamer guild?” [Ryouma]
As I said that, pondering, the madam smiled at me and said this.
“Don’t worry, it’s fine. After all, even though you’re also registered as a slave magic user, you’re also registered as a merchant, right? Moreover, this might be poor of me to say, but the people of the slum are most likely people who wouldn’t accept jobs from the tamer guild.
Just like Ryouma-kun, they too, only have weak slave monsters. Even if they try to tame a stronger magical beast, they can’t. Otherwise, they’d be able to get jobs from the tamer guild, and that would allow their lifestyle to improve.
It’s also normal for them to look for jobs that aren’t related to slave magic, so there shouldn’t be any room for criticism.” [Madam]
“Precisely. Still, I think it’s better if you talk with the guild master of the merchant guild first. That way, everything can proceed without a hitch.” [Rheinbach]
That’s true. Alright!
“Then, I’ll go to the merchant guild tomorrow.” [Ryouma]
With that, we came to a conclusion. After that, I drank some black tea for a while, while I asked them about the tamer guild’s criterion, then afterwards, I left the room.
Apparently, the current tamer guild considers the power of the magic beast that the slave magic user has contracted to be a representation of that magician’s skill.
So it doesn’t seem like they’re actually looking at actual abilities. All they’re looking at is the division of the magical beasts’ strength by referencing something that somewhat resembles an illustration book. Moreover, regardless of how many you contract, as long as it’s something weak like a slime, then they won’t value it. That is to say, 0 is 0 no matter how many times you multiply it.
All in all, what this means is that, as long as you’re able to contract with a strong beast, then you’re an expert at slave magic. If you can’t do that, then you’re bad at slave magic.
Of course, I also understand that there are people like the duke’s household, who don’t only judge a slave magic user’s ability on that, alone. But then, there’s also the fact that it takes time to train and figure out a way to use your slave monster, whereas if you’d just tamed a powerful slave monster instead, then even if you don’t train much, you’ll be able to easily gain strength. It would appear that, that kind of thinking has become popular in recent years.
Matthew is a typical man who thinks like that. And after gaining some influence, it would appear that he’s become rather wicked.
Before I went back to my room, they emphasized to me the need to be careful of Matthew. If they only had some proof of his wrongdoings, then they’d be able to do something, but without any evidence, it becomes really difficult.