Volume 4 Chapter 17: Ryouma’s Busy Day 3
After it was decided for me to participate in the magic beast tournament, the meeting ended.
I handed the vitamins I brought from my house to Paul and the others, and left the distribution to them. Then after I received the vinyl bags (used for the crushed ice in my store by the arena) and a bundle of rectangular paper with the mark of the slime on them, they sent me off, and I left the research facility.
The next place I’m headed to is the training facility. If you walk straight ahead from the entrance of the research facility, there’s a backdoor leading to the courtyard and the entrance used for transporting goods.
Everything except for the pillar was removed in that area to allow carriages to pass through, so it feels similar to the area under the girders of a railway or a highway.
As I entered from that backdoor, and into the courtyard, what greeted me was the figure of the merchant guild’s guildmaster watching over some kids.
“You’re quite late today.” [Grisela]
“Sorry. I made you wait.” [Ryouma]
“It’s fine, it’s my rest day today anyway. That aside, why don’t you go ahead and settle your business here.” [Grisela]
The guild master of the merchant guild, Grisela-san, has been living here in the training facility since half a year ago. In here, she’s not a guild master, but just a grandmother who’s watching over the children. So when she’s here, she’s just Granny Gri.
The reason she ended up living here all started because of one particular day half a year ago when I went to the merchant guild, and received some tea from her.
It was then that I found out for the first time that Granny Gri had been living in the nap room provided for the guild master, and hadn’t been coming home at all. Although she might have had a big house in the residential district of Gimuru, it was mostly being taken care of by a person she hired.
She didn’t have any relatives there, so even if she did come home, she’d still be alone, so she’s always been staying at the guild is what Granny Gri said when I asked her about it.
It finally made sense to me when I heard that.
Granny Gri was almost always at the guild whenever I dropped by. There were plenty of times when I couldn’t meet her right away because of a guest or a meeting, but that’s all. There’s never been any other reason for me to be unable to meet her. She was always at the guild, and she always made time for me whenever I visited… it struck me as a bit odd then, but it never occurred to me that she lived in the guild.
We talked a bit more after that. And since it just cost her money to have a house and have someone watch over it, it was decided that she’ll be moving to the training facility.
The people of the merchant guild were grateful when they found out. Apparently, the employees of the guild were also worrying about Granny Gri. But because of her age, they figured it was still better than her coming home just to be alone since at least with her there, someone could attend to her if something were to happen.
The training facility has plenty of people in the dorms, and there’re even doctors amongst the employees, so it was a lot more reassuring to have Granny Gri stay there. I went to help move Granny Gri’s things from her house, but surprisingly, there were people from the guild who came to help as well. They even bowed their heads to me in gratitude.
Nowadays, Granny Gri would watch the children on her rest days. She would also teach math and how to read from time to time.
“Oi, what are you spacing out for? Let’s go.” [Grisela]
I headed to the storeroom with Granny Gri, and left the paper with the slime mark on it that I just got from the research facility. In exchange, I took the paper bags that had the slime mark imprinted on them.
“This is quite a lot.” [Ryouma]
“It’s because the kids are full of spirit and are competing with each other.” [Grisela]
“I’ll have to thank them later. Ah, should I bring them some sweets?” [Ryouma]
“They’ll be delighted.” [Grisela]
After that short conversation, I started gathering things again.
The children help out with light chores around the facility such as drawing water and sweeping. Amongst those light chores, one of the jobs they do is the production of these paper bags. It was me who suggested that the children do these light chores.
The paper bags they make are used in the store by the arena, so their work doesn’t go to waste. And the kids are really happy when I praise them when we meet. I wonder what I should make as thanks this time. Cookies are fine, but… Well, I think I’ll take my time thinking about it later.
After I finished gathering everything, I exited the storeroom, and went to a room, where I chatted with Granny Gri for a while as we drank some tea. It’s already become a habit for me to take a break from anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour like this after gathering all the paper bags.
After we talked about the news of some historic ruins being discovered in a forest called Resaruba, we began to talk about my participation in the magic beast tournament. Granny Gri is a trustworthy partner of mine, so after we talked about the details that led to me participating, she encouraged me, saying, “Go win!” After which, Granny Gri said this.
“Don’t you think it’d be a good idea to make your own guild soon?” [Grisela]
“By guild you mean something like the merchant guild?” [Ryouma]
“Right. If you were to make a slime guild and partner with the merchant guild, it’ll be hard for others to meddle with your matters. And I’m sure the merchant guild will readily agree as soon as they hear about your slimes.” [Grisela]
Ahh, so there was that method too… But how do you even make a guild? I tried to ask that, but Granny Gri was already lost in her prattling.
“Isn’t it great having such a high production rate? It can be troublesome when you just make things as you please, but if you were to properly use that productivity, the price of goods can be reduced. For example, food. When the harvest is bad, the price of food increases. And although it’s slight, the effect on the people can be big. Moreover, an imprudent fellow could buy up the supply, and then sell them for… well, you understand, right?” [Grisela]
I think you said everything already though…
“When all the supplies are bought, shortage will come, and the prices will rise. Because of that, there’re people who won’t be able to afford their own share. And that’s where the slimes come in, right?” [Slime]
“Exactly. Fortunately, however, this country is rich. So even small villages should have some reserve stock. But with your slime, they’ll be able to get by before using that all up.” [Grisela]
“And since that’ll be sold at the right price, the others who are selling at a higher price will have to sell lower if they want to sell at all.” [Ryouma]
“Even if the price jump isn’t fully mitigated, enough food reaching the people is more than satisfactory. As you can see, I’m already an old woman. In this long life that I’ve lived, I watched how the imprudent took advantage of others plenty of times… I can’t forgive them. That sort of unethical practice.” [Grisela]
While I don’t know for sure what it was that Grisela-san was thinking, the last words she said were heavy.
“…There’s that method as well. In any case, it’s good enough for you to keep this in your mind for now. You need some achievements before being able to put up a guild anyway, so your course of action hasn’t really changed.” [Grisela]
“But of course. You didn’t really think you’d be able to make a guild so easily, did you? There’re plenty of things needed to make a guild. Having achieved something is one of those.” [Grisela]
Now that she mentions it, that does make sense.
Around this time, I noticed that I’ve spent too much time already, so I decided to excuse myself.
“Thank you for the delicious tea.” [Ryouma]
“Do your best in your work, alright?” [Grisela]
Granny Gri saw me off outside her room, then I went to Serge-san’s shop.
“Welcome to the Morgan Firm. Please come this way.” [Employee]
The employee tending to the store greeted me, and brought me to a room. The place I was brought to was not guest room, but the storeroom. I have a lot of goods with me, so the first thing to do was to store these into the storeroom.
First were the ingots that weighed a total of 100kg. Then the strainers and the baskets, the bamboo ear cleaner (the soft part is made with the fluff of the fluff slime), the various bamboo products… and then just as I was taking out the bamboo charcoal, Serge-san arrived. We exchanged greetings, then after I finished unloading everything, the employees came to check the quality of the goods.
I waited at the guestroom while the employees ran their checks. Sitting in front of me was, of course, Serge-san. There, I took out several small boxes from my Item Box and handed them to Serge-san.
“These are this week’s portion. Please confirm the goods.” [Ryouma]
Serge-san took the small boxes, piling the contents by the edge of the desk one by one.
The contents of these small boxes are all ornaments that were handed to me to be uncursed. Of course, they’re no longer cursed now, and are just mere ornaments.
Serge-san gathers cursed goods, and hands them to me, allowing me to practice my skills. And in exchange, I uncurse the goods he hands me for free. The goods can’t be sold when cursed, but once uncursed, they can be sold like normal.
“I’ve checked everything. Thank you very much. Well then… please come this way.” [Serge]
A new set of cursed goods was given to me. I hid those in my Item Box. With this I’ve finished most of my business here in the Morgan Firm today. I chatted with Serge-san for a while as I waited for the employees to finish the checking of the goods. When they finished, I got my compensation, and I left the firm.
The next place I’m headed to is the store I have which is located by the arena. My goal is to bring the potatoes, the dried corns, the bags to be used for the crushed ice as well as the paper bags, and finally, to replace the strainers. The strainers I’m using for my store are different form the ones I sell to the Morgan Firm.
I’m going to be at the arena anyway, so I figured I might as well register for the tournament, but then as I passed by the gates of the second town, I saw someone I didn’t want to meet.
It was the guild master of the tamer guild, Matthew.
He was partially bald, being bald only at the top of his head, while the remaining hair he had was gray as ash. He had hollow cheeks and a pale, sickly complexion. And a melancholic aura seemed to linger about him as he muttered to himself.
The streets would normally be packed with people, but the area around Matthew was empty. Apparently, people found Matthew ghastly, and were avoiding him. Matthew didn’t seem to notice me as he only passed by me, and left for the direction of the first town.
“…He’s gotten even more haggard in the time I haven’t seen him. But since he doesn’t look anything like he did 3 years ago, regardless how much more haggard he becomes, not much changes…” [Ryouma]
Whenever I see Matthew, I can’t help but remember how haughty he was when I first met him. The Matthew that passed by me and the Matthew then don’t resemble each other at all. He’s like a zombie nowadays.
From what I’ve heard, an assistant sent by the head office is now the one who’s actually in control of the guild. And Matthew is now being made to run from place to place to deal with the ruffians appearing in the second town as well as to handle various routine duties.
I’ve never met the assistant who is now in control of the guild, so I don’t know much about him. Speaking of which, this is now actually the second assistant. I know a little about the previous assistant, but I don’t know anything about this one at all.
It’s hard to talk about the first one, but he was persistent in asking me to work for the tamer guild. Every time he would come, he would lambast Matthew and praise me. Thanks to the demon king’s influence, however, I could tell that he was lying. So aside from the first time we met, I never struggled with dealing with the guy.
But the man was persistent, and he would come three to four times every month to the laundromat to try and convince me. He suddenly stopped coming after a few months. When I thought he’d given up, I heard he apparently disappeared.
Because of his sudden appearance, the guards visited my store since he was always coming there. I was really surprised. They just came to hear the details, but it was still really bad for my heart.
Incidentally, this story spread relatively quickly throughout the town. Rumors spread like wildfire, and people began wondering whether Matthew had something do with the man’s disappearance. Matthew was also investigated, but in the end, it was decided that he had nothing to do with the case. However, since then, I hear Matthew’s gotten extremely uncomfortable from then on.
As I thought those things as I walked, I passed by a large barn. It’s the inn where a lot of slave demon magicians stay at.
“That was back when the ruffians were really going wild…” [Ryouma]
Around the time when the slave demon magicians and conjurers of the tamer guild started going wild, people were arrested. I thought for sure Matthew would also get arrested due to mismanagement, but because of the advocacy of the assistant that came, Matthew was spared.
Granny Gri says that the reason that assistant saved Matthew is so that he himself could avoid taking the blame all by himself. It’s only a matter of time before Matthew gets the short end of the stick.
“…Mn? Come to think of it, what did Matthew come to do here?” [Ryouma]
I wonder if there’s something going on in the town? Hmm… but whatever. Anyway, I better hurry to the arena.
I went to the store in the arena, and delivered the goods. I asked whether they needed more hands to help out with the work, and then I decided to add one more worker just to be safe.
I informed the manager that I’ll be getting another worker from the training facility once I get back, and will have him work at the store starting tomorrow. Then afterwards I went to register for the magic beast tournament.
When I went to register, the employee in charge explained to me the details regarding the tournament. The summary is as follows:
1. The tournament will start 10 days later.
2. There are two phases. First, are the qualifiers, and then the main tournament.
3. Each phase will take a day each, but the semifinals and the finals will be held on the third day alogn with the award ceremony, so all-in-all, the tournament will be three days long.
4. The qualifier is a free-for-all battle royal. Each participant can have up to five magical beasts.
5. The main tournament will be held like a standard tournament, and there will not be any set limitation on the number of magical beasts that one can bring. One can also refrain from sending all of his beasts in a certain round if he wishes to save some strength for the next round. Also, a participant can send out another beast once if the beast he has out in the battle is defeated.
6. A Rank and S Rank magical beasts are prohibited so as to ensure the safety of the spectators.
7. The participant must acknowledge that he or she will be responsible if his or her own beast is injured or killed.
8. Participants are forbidden from attacking other participants directly. Only the beasts may attack each other.
9. Participants are also not allowed to attack their opponent’s magic beast directly. Participants are free to protect themselves, however.
10. The first place prize is 50,000 suits. The second place prize is 10,000 suits.
Up to five beasts for the preliminaries… Is a big slime considered “one”? Or is it considered “one-hundred”? It should still be considered as a single magic beast for now, but… I don’t want to be stingy when it comes to the public unveiling regarding the big slime too, so I think I’ll have to come up with something.
In any case, I finished registering already, so I left the arena. When I got out, I noticed that the sun had already set.
I hurriedly went to the Slime Den Restaurant, and delivered the remaining potatoes, onions, and sesame seeds. I was there already, so I had my meal there as well, then I went back home. Along the way, I bought five barrels of wine from a store I frequented. I stored them in my Dimension Home. When I got out of the town, I used my dimension magic, and went home in an instant.
After gave the goblins some wine and some snacks as thanks for their work, I went to read the books my grandmother had left me before going to sleep, and studied medicine. After that, I decided to retire for the day… Ah, I forgot to think about the contents of my lesson with Elia’s group… I guess I still can’t sleep after all.
I haven’t forgotten about the chapters I owe guys. There’s a construction going on right next to my room right now, and the fumes and the light from welding are apparently bad for me – not to mention it’s noisy as all hell – so I can’t use my PC as much as I’d like to. The construction will finish in just a few more days, so please wait a bit.