“This is my familiar. It’s a slime variant known as cleaner slime.” [Ryouma]
“First I’ve heard of that slime.” [Serge]
“This is a new slime I discovered. I’ve submitted its information to the tamers guild, but I should currently be the only one with a cleaner slime contracted.” [Ryouma]
Even the gods said it was a new variant, so there shouldn’t be any other than the ones under me.
“Does that slime of yours have something to do with your laundromat?” [Serge]
“This slimes possesses the ability to clean things by eating filth. Naturally, when filth is eaten, the filth vanishes, and whatever that filth was sticking to will become clean.” [Ryouma]
When Serge-san heard that, his jaws hit the floor.
I guess it really is hard to believe.
I decided to take out the loincloth of a goblin from my Item Box.
“It’s probably hard to believe just by listening, so let me give you a demonstration. First, please take a look at this. It’s a loincloth from one of the goblins we killed. Despite how dirty it is, the cleaner slime can eat the filth off of it and make it clean again.” [Ryouma]
When I said that, Serge-san gulped.
“Would you like to use Identify on it first?” [Ryouma]
“Yes, that would be nice. I can tell just from the smell that it’s in fact goblin loincloth, but…” [Serge]
Chuckling, Serge-san used Identify on the loincloth and confirmed that it was in fact a goblin’s loincloth. After handing it back to the cleaner slime, the cleaner slime took the cloth into its body, and in the blink of an eye, the filth vanished. When the cleaner slime spit the loincloth onto the table in the reception office, only 30 seconds had passed.
Serge-san took the cloth that was clearly a different color than before and used Identify on it. When he did it, he was able to confirm that it was now in fact cleaned, then he took my hands and exclaimed, “Who would’ve thought that a goblin’s loincloth could be cleaned in such a short time!?”
My hands were dirty because I touched the goblin loincloth. But by the time he noticed it – most probably from my gaze – it was too late. Serge-san’s expression was dim. It’s a good opportunity, so let’s have him experience the cleaner slime bath himself. Just the hands.
After the hand washing, Serge-san turned into another storm of praise.
He’s a good guy. I know that. But when he’s like this, it’s really exhausting…
“I beg your pardon. I got a little overzealous there, but I say… This slime is really fascinating. With slimes like this, opening your laundromat shouldn’t be a problem. Price, speed, quality… I can see the coins already.” [Serge]
Ah, Serge-san’s off into his own world again…
“So, how big do you think the bags should be? Unfortunately, I don’t know much about the current market.” [Ryouma]
“Hmm… I’ll have a couple brought over.” [Serge]
Serge-san summoned the female servant and had her bring several bags.
“As you can see, the bags are arranged from smallest to biggest from left to right. The leftmost bag can fit one adult’s full set of clothes.” [Serge]
“A bigger one would be better, I think. A family is bound to have more than one set, and there are plenty of bachelors out there who make a habit of piling their laundry.
Moreover, it’s cheaper to pay 1 medium copper for 4 to 5 set of clothes than just for one, and it’s not like it makes any difference for me to wash 1 set or 5 sets, so might as well. I’m sure the customers will appreciate it. Besides, I’m only trying to make enough to get by, and I think there’ll be more returning customers if their first experience with the shop is affordable. That should help turn over a profit too.” [Ryouma]
Those affordable shops helped me a lot back in my previous world… Like those gyudon restaurants.
I also frequented the same shops over and over, such that in the end, I had no idea how much money I spent on the stores near my house. I’m not unhappy about it. If anything I’m grateful for their support.
From that perspective, I think it’s important to prioritize the acquisition of repeating customers. A low price would surely become a potent weapon in accomplishing that goal. Of course, provided that the service is satisfactory.
…While I was thinking that to myself, it suddenly occurred to me that Serge-san’s eyes were sparkling again.
“Wonderful. Ryouma-sama, what great foresight you possess. To think that at such a young age you already realize that immediate income shouldn’t be prioritized, and have even thought up excellent policies… I, Serge, admire you. Truly.” [Serge]
What is this feeling? I just talked a little about my personal experience in my past life, and yet for some reason, being praised so earnestly has me feeling itchy and guilty… I feel like I owe those economics majors an apology… But I think if I brainstorm a little…
“What about this bag then? It can accommodate 3 to 4 persons’ 2 days’ worth of clothes. That would be around the size of your average family.” [Serge]
“Let’s see… With that bag one person should be able to fit in an entire week’s portion. Let’s go with that. Could I also get a couple of bags double and 5x that size?” [Ryouma]
“I most certainly could provide such bags, but wouldn’t those be too big?” [Serge]
“The first bags are meant for personal use, while the double sized ones will be catered toward small parties, while the 5x ones will be for the adventurers guild, blacksmiths with many disciples, and construction workers… In other words, large groups of people.” [Ryouma]
“If we calculate one person’s 1 week portion to be one person each day, that totals to 7 people’s portion. Double that and we get 14, then quintuple the first value and we get 35 people’s worth of clothes.
If the first bag is 1 medium copper coin, that’s 10 suits. For the double I could charge 1 medium copper coin and 8 small copper coins; that’s 18 suits. For the 5x, I could charge 4 medium copper coins; that’s 40 suits. Like this I’ll be able to give a discount to bigger groups.
The discount will serve as an incentive to come in groups. If there’s not enough to form a group, then the customers will go out of their way to get more people. In the end, the laundromat will quickly gain renown.
On top of that, the more people enlist my laundromat’s services, the more frequently people will drop by. If the double size could accommodate a person’s 14 days’ worth of clothes, then it should be safe to say that he won’t be coming back for the next 14 days. But if it were a group of people getting their clothes done, then they would drop by sooner rather than later. In this way, I’ll be able to get a sustainable daily income. A group-focused policy like this should turn over more profit in the long run.” [Ryouma]
Brainstorming, the act of thinking through one proposal and seeing what happens without asserting its value right from the start.
It’s been a while since I last tried it, but it seems I still have my wits about me.
“Blacksmiths and construction workers also tend to get dirty, so they’ll definitely want to have their work clothes washed. Once they get word of how good the laundromat is, they’ll want to get their personal clothes washed too.
Blacksmiths and construction workers tend to be men. And men do have an inclination to be poor at laundry. Just today an adventurer told me if it were possible to put in a lot of laundry that he would enlist my service, so…” [Ryouma]
It was then that I finally realized Serge-san’s state.
…Oh no! I screwed up. Serge-san’s eyes have gone all big and stiff. I’ve always had a bad habit of going on and on by myself, and I’ve even lost a lot of relationships to it. I must’ve let my guard down because it’s been a while since I last talked about something work related.