I dropped by the store to let everyone know that I was back, then Carm-san came to give me a report of what happened in my absence.
Everything was going well as usual, but there were two matters unrelated to the store that needed my attention.
“This was from Vyezen.” [Carm]
As Carm-san handed me a letter, two frames with a note could be seen on the desk in the office.
Vyezen… Where did I hear that name before? Oh, yeah! That’s the name of Fina-san’s village! It was written in their resume, but I’d completely forgotten about it already. Right. That’s what their village is called.
“Huh. This letter is from the village headman of Vyezen.” [Ryouma]
…The letter spoke about their decision to sell barley tea. They also expressed their gratitude to me in it.
The cooperation between the Saionji Company and the village seems to be going well. They’re actively processing the barley kept by each family, and they’re even planning on talking to Pioro-san about the construction of a larger plant to increase the yield and processing rate of barely.
Apparently, the company president himself visited them after I sent him a letter of introduction and a sample. When he did, he was so happy he purchased the other excess grains they had.
As proof of their gratitude, they are giving me a formal framed letter of gratitude, as well as the position of ‘Advisor’ for their barley processing plant. These are the contents of the two frames.
This ‘Advisor’ position is an honorary position, so it doesn’t have any responsibilities. There’s no reward too, but they’ll be sending me barley tea regularly under the pretense of needing my input regarding the quality and taste of their product.
“Congratulations on becoming the advisor.” [Carm]
“Thank you very much.” [Ryouma]
I didn’t really do anything, but Ill take it.
“What’s the other issue?” [Ryouma]
“Yes. There’s a rumor that’s been going around lately. As the rumor goes, apparently, the city wants to destroy the slum and chase out the people in order to build the new town.” [Carm]
“That doesn’t sound very peaceful.” [Ryouma]
What’s going on? I mean know what the words mean, but I don’t understand why this is happening.
Carm-san was similarly confused, so he had immediately investigated the issue.
“Through the merchant guild I was able to find out that there were no such plans. But before we had established ourselves here, the government office had a scandal, right?” [Carm]
“Yes. Because of that they appointed someone else to lead the administration. Do you mean to say that the people don’t trust the current administration?” [Ryouma]
“Yes. Although the administration was able to calm things by doing away with the previous head and replacing him, it’s not such an easy thing to regain the lost trust. And suspicions beget more suspicions…” [Carm]
I remember the man I met at the Founding Festival.
He must be having a hard time having to deal with this mess his predecessor left him.
“Will this have an effect on the store?” [Ryouma]
“So far, no. But the past few days, the slum people have been looking for work and have actively been visiting stores that are recruiting. The store isn’t recruiting right now, but there’s a possibility that they might come to look for job later. We need to decide what to do if such a thing were to occur.” [Carm]
“Hmm… We have enough people right now, don’t we?” [Ryouma]
I can afford to hire a few more hands, but the store is doing just fine with the current employees. Even if I am going to be increasing the number of stores in the future, is there any reason for me to quickly increase my workforce? I can’t think of any.
But the people of the slum did help my store a lot at the start. I know many people from the slums too. If they’re having a hard time, I’d definitely want to help.
“I’m sure everyone has their opinion on the matter, but after working with everyone, I believe the slum people are good people.” [Carm]
“At first, I also imagined the slums would be more dangerous.” [Ryouma]
“Actually, you’re not wrong. After all, it’s not strange for there to be places that even the guards can’t enter as the town gets bigger, but when you think about it that way, just the fact that the slums in this town can still be entered shows that they’re still quite safe.” [Carm]
Is that so? …Oops. We ended up digressing again.
Anyway, I could probably hire some more people if it’s just to help carry stuff, but… Maybe I can just increase the number of employees when it’s busy. I could hire part-timers just for the busy hours. Doing so should lessen the workload, and I could even increase the number of counters. If people are able to process their transactions quicker, then the time the customers have to spend waiting should also lessen.
As I thought of that, I suggested it to Carm-san.
“What do you think?” [Ryouma]
Save for cases like the previous interviews or that incident where we needed to prevent the cleaner slimes from being kidnapped, we can’t really afford to hire more people, so I think this idea is fine. And if we find some people with good potential, we could consider hiring them permanently as well.” [Carm]
“Then, can I leave it to you to come up with a more detailed plan?” [Ryouma]
“Of course. Well then, this concludes the report for the day.” [Carm]
“Thank you as always. I’ll be leaving again in five days, so please take care of the store then.” [Ryouma]
“Please leave it to me. What will you be doing now, Boss?” [Carm]
“I’m planning on going back to the abandoned mine to check up on things, and I might have to take out any monsters that have settled down lately.” [Ryouma]
“You just came back from a trip, so please do make sure to rest.” [Carm]
“I will. Thank you.” [Ryouma]
After finishing his report, Carm-san saw me off. I took him on his offer and left early.