Translator: Kell | Editor: Ryunakama
Ten people, huh… That’s going to be tough.
The plantation is still short-handed, especially the pharmacists. We didn’t have men to spare from working the other duties, so it’ll be difficult to gather people just to grind belladonnas.
We could gather more help for the other tasks, but more people meant the more chances of the secret operation getting leaked. Even if we hired trustworthy people, they could be followed, observed, or interrogated.
Count Meigis and I don’t intend to overwork our personnel. We’re going to increase our workforce later, but ten at once is too risky. We can’t afford to have this leaked now.
「…If only we could somehow use up more of these belladonnas…」
The pharmacists were carefully grinding the belladonnas. Maybe it was necessary to do it thoroughly, so I can understand if it takes time.
「Do you have to do it so thoroughly?」
「Yes. If they’re not crushed finely, we can’t fully extract the juices. We could still make the potions, but then our output would decrease.」
I see. So they have to be completely grinded so we can utilize our resources effectively.
「Can I try it?」 I said as I took a spare mortar.
「Of course. Are you going to help?」
I started grinding belladonnas using the mortar. It was surprisingly difficult. With familiar hand movements, the pharmacists were steadily making progress. I, on the other hand, couldn’t do the task properly. I only used a few belladonnas when making my Wisdom Medicine, but crushing a lot of them at once was a different matter altogether.
「This is quite hard.」
「Familiarity is necessary in this task. I mentioned we need ten experienced people. If they’re amateurs, we might need around thirty people.」
Yeah… thirty men is just impossible.
There’s only a limited number of adventurers with inferior job classes who are loyal to the Count. If we recruited people by level of trustworthiness, the more people, the less trustworthy they become.
Hiring thirty people right off the bat is just too risky. With my inexperienced hands, I continued grinding the belladonnas. And then…
「Like this? 」
When the belladonnas had lost their original form, I showed it to the pharmacist who shook his head.
「It’s not completely crushed yet. We can’t fully utilize the belladonna like this. Use this.」he said as he handed me a finer mortar.
So that’s why it takes time. I see. Making medicine sure is complicated.
「If we used mine, how many potions can we produce with it?」
「Let’s see… About 97% of the normal output.」
Hmm? Figures are a lot different than what I expected. Ninety-seven… That’s almost a hundred percent.
「Wait a minute. So you’re doing all this for the three percent?」I said as I pointed at the finer mortar.
The pharmacist was taken aback.
「Now that I think about it, we have plenty of belladonnas now. It’s just we have this notion that belladonnas are extremely precious items. We didn’t think things through.」
It seems the pharmacists thought the belladonnas were so precious that they didn’t want to waste anything. But right now we had a lot of them. If left alone, they will only drop in quality. In other words, it’s a race against time.
「If we don’t do it thoroughly, we can work twice as fast!」
「Thank you for the advice!」
They started wildly blending the belladonnas. If we can work twice as fast, we’ll have almost double the output… 97% x 2 for a total of 194%.
But that was still too slow. Even with twice the speed, only a portion can be processed. If we don’t have to do things thoroughly, then there has to be a more efficient method.
Without saying the words, I activated Magic Search to check the positions of monsters in the immediate surrounding. There weren’t any strong monsters nearby at the moment. It’s probably okay for me to leave for a bit.
「I’m going shopping for a bit.」
Leaving the mortar on the table, I stood up.
「Yeah. I’ll be back right away so just continue what you’re doing.」