Today, I dropped by the merchant guild first thing in the morning and was – as expected – brought to the reception office. This happens every time I come here, so I’ve already gotten used to it.
“Welcome, Ryouma. Are you hiring again?” [Grisiera]
“Yes, but there’s something I’d like to consult with you about first.” [Ryouma]
“Hmm? What is it?” [Grisiera]
I explained to her the situation.
“I see… Well, the ones I introduced to you on the first day were also like that, so… Alright. If there’s someone you think you can trust, bring him here. It’s not like it’s a crime or anything, so we’ll be able to process the papers quickly.” [Grisiera]
“Alright. When I find one, I’ll bring him then. Thanks.” [Ryouma]
“Yeah. Good luck.” [Grisiera]
Our conversation smoothly ended just like that, so I was about to leave, but then she suddenly called out to me.
“Wait, Ryouma. I forgot I had something to tell you. Take a seat first.” [Grisiera]
“What is it?” [Ryouma]
Though I’d just stood up, I sat back down again.
“It’s about those ruffians that came to your store before. I did some digging around on my own, and I managed to find out where they’re from. Unfortunately, I’ve yet to find out who commissioned them. Regardless, there’s a high probability that they’re involved with the people from the dark guild, so do be careful.” [Grisiera]
“The dark guild…” [Ryouma]
That’s no different than a criminal organization, right?
“Is that an organization of thieves and assassins?” [Ryouma]
“That’s right. But they’re not just involved with smalltime crimes. They’re also involved with smuggling, the procuring of tools to commit crimes, and they also act as an intermediary to contact people who specialize in crimes. Basically, they do a lot of illegal stuff. They’re not all just thieves or ruffians who can only bark. There are killers among them too, so do be careful.” [Grisiera]
“I will. Thank you for your warning.” [Ryouma]
“Don’t mention it. Also, you’re going to visit Taylor, right? Take this with you.” [Grisiera]
The guild master called out to someone outside, and then a clerk entered the room with a glass vial. The vial was filled with green liquid, and at the bottom could be seen some fine powder deposited.
After the guild master checked that it was the right product, the clerk stored the vial into a wooden box.
Judging from the color, viscosity, and the fine powder deposited at the bottom, I’m guessing that the medicine is probably a nutrient of some sort. A powerful one too.
“Sorry. A little.” [Ryouma]
I don’t want to stick my nose into something I have no business being involved with, but it’s true that I’m curious.
“You were the one who suggested that medicine to Wogan, no? But I suppose if you knew what sort of medicine this was, I doubt you’d be so curious. Regardless, it’s not for anything serious. Don’t worry. It’s just that when one grows old, there are times when they just can’t quite get rid of the fatigue. That’s all.” [Grisiera] 
The guild master wrote something while talking to me. After a while, she handed me a letter.
“Please pass this letter for me. This box is a regular thing, so he’ll understand once you give it to him. I told him in the letter that you’ll be giving it to him directly. I also told him to help you out with what you’re planning.” [Grisiera]
“Thank you very much.” [Ryouma]
“Give the old man my regards too, alright?” [Grisiera]
After the guild master saw me off, I left the guild.
“And that’s the gist of it. So I was thinking of hiring some people I’ve found through the guild or have them register at the guild.” [Ryouma]
“I see…” [Taylor]
Because I had something I needed to deliver, I was able to get a face-to-face meeting with the branch head of the tamers guild, Taylor. I told him the same stuff I told the guild master of the merchants guild, but while the merchant guild master didn’t mind at all, the tamer guild master seemed to be in deep thought.
“…Hmm? Oh, I beg your pardon. I can prepare some tea, if you’d like.” [Taylor]
“Oh, you needn’t mind me. Is there a problem, though?” [Ryouma]
“Rather than a problem… Why don’t you take a seat and I’ll explain.” [Taylor]
The guild master of the tamers guild stood up and walked over to a corner of the room, where a small shelf was. From that, he took out a tea set. He also had a magic tool that resembled a stove, and he used that to start making tea.
“You make the tea yourself?” [Ryouma]
“It’s not worth the effort to call people just to have them make me tea. Besides, making my own allows me a short reprieve from all the work.” [Taylor]
The guild master was quite skilled at making tea. The way he moved his hands seemed no lesser than the maids of the duke’s family.
When the guild master came back with our tea, he started explaining.
“Now then… There’s nothing wrong with your proposal itself. I also don’t mind if you bring someone you believe trustworthy here. And of course, you may also hire a person that’s currently affiliated with an organization. That sort of stuff just falls under the normal operations of the guild. Now, I would like the guild to support your store, but there are some things worrying me.” [Taylor]
“What do you mean?” [Ryouma]
“Hmm. If your store starts hiring from the tamers guild, then that would mean more jobs for us. As you build one branch store after another, the number of jobs that people can take will also increase. From the perspective of the guild, that’s something to be happy about. Moreover, your store needs slimes, which is one of the reasons why I want the guild to support it. Do you remember what I told you when you registered?” [Ryouma]
“…You mean the part where you said there’s no job for me to do?” [Ryouma]
The guild master nodded.
“The tamer guild gives jobs depending on whether a tamer’s monster looks up to the task or not. If it looks up to the task, then we can give them a job, and if not, then naturally, we don’t. In exchange, we also give out recommendations when we think they’re up to it. That being said, there are certain types of monsters that are simply not cut out for certain things.
Some have difficulty finding work, some find work but the salary is low, and some are simply too high-maintenance. There are a good number of tamers who’ve had difficulties making ends meet because of such reasons.
Because as much as we’d like to provide everyone a job, there’s a limit to the number of jobs we do have… This has also led to some tamers trying to tame monsters that they are not compatible with and failing.” [Taylor]
So, they try to provide as much variety in work as possible, but clearly, there’s still a limit to that.
After a while, he started talking about the slimes.
“Slimes are renowned to be weak, slow, and generally useless, but every tamer has been indebted to them at least once in their life.” [Taylor]
“Because they use them to practice?” [Ryouma
“Exactly. I’ve been the guild master of this branch for a long time now, and I’ve heard many situations where a tamer was unable to tame anything past a slime. As for those who couldn’t even tame a slime, well, they’re just really not cut out for taming.
Slimes are really easy to form a contract with, so they’re often used for training.
…I don’t know how much your store pays its workers, but if tamers can start making a living with just slimes, then the number of tamers that are struggling to make ends meet should decrease. That’s what I think.
I know it’s really selfish of me to say that when I told you before that I didn’t have any work for you, but…” [Taylor]
“No, that’s…” [Ryouma]
I know that the guild master was simply helpless regarding that, so I don’t blame him.
“Well, if you don’t consider it an issue, then thank you. In any case, this is why I want to support your store. There’s just one problem… The upper brass of the guild.” [Taylor]
The guild master nodded as he took a sip out of his black tea.
He’d added sugar to it, so it was fairly sweet, but the face the guild master was making was bitter.
“If it were just supporting you, then my authority would be more than enough, but if it were the guild itself to support you, I will have to report to the upper brass. It wouldn’t be strange if they started meddling then.” [Taylor]
So, in other words, the guild will become shareholders? Or will they make me listen to them since they’re supporting me?
“There are also some people that simply refuse to change their minds on the uselessness of slimes.” [Taylor]
“…You mean like people who had to endure a life of hardship, until they were able to finally make a stable living? I suppose some people from that crowd would have something to say if they see tamers making good income just from slimes, which are said to be the weakest and easiest monster to capture.” [Ryouma]
It would be a pain if they got mad at me over that. I don’t feel like closing my store either.
“But then again, from the rumors I’ve heard, it seems you don’t need any support. I don’t know if the recruitment will go well, but I’ll try calling out my personal trustworthy connections and see if I can get you a few people.” [Taylor]
“Thank you very much.” [Ryouma]
“If I couldn’t do this much, that would simply be too sorry. By the way, are you busy today?” [Taylor]
“Oh, I was thinking of going to the adventurers guild after this, actually. To meet up with someone who might be able to introduce me to some candidate employees.” [Ryouma]
“That’s rather fast. I thought you’d be taking your time more.” [Taylor]
“I changed my mind after hearing your part. Originally, I was planning on taking my time, but just as you said, the more stores I put up, the more jobs there will be, which means that there will be less people struggling to make ends meet. So, I thought I’d work a bit more proactively.
In any case, I’ve mostly made up my mind to hire some new people, so I feel it would be best if I could talk to them as soon as possible, so I can also think about the things that I need to consider.”
“Hmm… I’m glad you’re thinking about it, but you don’t really to mind it too much. Incidentally, since I’ve brought out this tea already, won’t you accompany me until we finish it?” [Taylor]
The guild master of the tamers guild poured another helping of black tea from the swaying teapot and into my cup.
Compared to the more serious atmosphere when we were talking earlier, our conversation over black tea was much more relaxed.
Tl Note: The link failed last time, so here it is again. There are Vietnamese translators translating TMPG now, please do check out their work: CLICK HERE
Also, PDF and ePUBs updated. Credits go to a kind reader and Byggvirr.