Volume 4 Chapter 3.5


Translator: Reflet
Editor: Weasalopes

The king just groaned at the minister’s confident statement. Currently, the only preferential treatment present in Forre was maybe relieving real estate taxes, while Wulls’ treatment of Hiroshi’s group was so favorable because practically everything Azuma Workshop produced was something that either Azuma Workshop had that was exclusive or something that Azuma Workshop was too far ahead in with quality/performance for others to try and attempt the same thing. No one was treating the workshop with preference because of pure favoritism or meritorious service; it was simply that everyone was confident in purchasing goods from them.

 The only elements of their treatment that you might consider slightly preferential were the fact they could pretty much get freely in and out of the castle and that their proposals were easier to implement than that of the other shopkeepers. However, the only proposals that dealt with all of Farlane or Wulls were really just the slum soil amelioration project and the experimental farm. In this case as well, had the workshop not acted, all of Wulls could have very well fell into wide chaos, so even if Hiroshi’s group had not proposed the plan, the king would have had them implement it at some point. 

 The experimental farm had come about when Hiroshi’s group brought the topic up early morning, and without it, the probability of quarantining/disposing/burning down the entire division due to suspicion of an epidemic would have been fairly high. Compared to that bad aftertaste, the country instead had lost nothing, and it wasn’t like Hiroshi’s group was gaining much monetary/societal profit from any of this.

 Then again, you might say that their being able to experiment with crop cultivation all they wanted using the country’s money was a tremendous profit for them.

「What if their leader changes after ten years?」

「I can say nothing regarding that, as there is no organization that does not go through change.」


 Although he understood the king’s concerns, the minister could only argue that there was no point trying to be too cautious right now. In ten years from now, even if they were to successfully dismantle Azuma Workshop, there was the possibility of another organization taking over the center.

「There is not much else we can do besides finding an excuse to meet them once and determine their nature.」

「Very true. Besides, even if these guests from the unknown continent were to take over after I die, that would simply mean the king after me is incompetent. The kingdom would doubtless end up destroyed regardless.」

「Right you are.」

「Needless to say, I have no intention of allowing anyone to come to the forefront.」

 The vassals around the king looked up at him trustingly. If Farlane or Darl’s core members (who were weakened, in a sense) were to hear this statement, they would have undoubtedly had awkward smiles on their face while nodding absentmindedly.

 Also, these concerns of the king of Forre were in fact valid. While they had never ravaged the country or screwed up politics, a hundred years later, Azuma Workshop would be taking over  the world due to everyone overdepending on their crafting/distribution as well as the related parties later using their positions at Azuma Workshop to continue to make the things they wanted to make, but that is between us.

「We’re back」

「Welcome back」

 When they had finished everything, Haruna’s group returned to the base at Crest Cave and were met by Mio, who seemed to have finished her aqua breath instructing.

「Where is Hiroshi-kun?」

「Sensei just told me he’s going to be a while.」

「I see.」

 Apparently he was caught up in something the queen and Magdarena asked him to do in the palace in Darl, and had yet to finish the conference in Igreos Temple.

「It seems like Sensei won’t be able to do anything tomorrow either, and I wanna test out the capabilities of the aqua breath, so is it cool?」

「Test? How so?」

「I’m going to actually go into the dungeon and confirm if we can get through the poison gas area.」

 Tatsuya and Makoto just went silent at Mio’s proposal. Haruna had seemingly decided to leave the decision to the elder two, beginning the tea.

「First, could you tell me why we’re included in this too?」

「If it’s all of us, we have methods to deal with the effects wearing off.」

「Well, I certainly do get that, but……」

 Mio spoke confidently, and Tatsuya just let out a grimace. Actually, inside his bag were plenty of items to deal with status irregularities. Thinking also of the environmental resistance on his equipment, there would be no no issues with the effects of aqua breath.

「And what merit is there in us participating in this efficiency test?」

「I made sure to negotiate that as well. You’ll be properly compensated, and they’ve also said that anyone from Azuma Workshop has free access to Crest Cave while it’s still a dungeon, excavation and everything.」

「I see. What kind of reward?」

「Money, orichalcum, adamantite, and some ore called hihiirogane that the dwarves have too much of.」

「So they’ve thought this out. Great.」

 Makoto just grinned at how spot-on the rewards sounded. Even if there were quite a few people who could process magic steel, anything beyond orichalcum seemed to be a threshold that had not been reached by anyone in the skill department within the last three hundred years. The same could be said for refinement, of which the last known person to possess the skill died in an accident before they could convey it to anyone. Additionally, the smelting furnace, not having been maintained properly, simply ceased to function.

 These metals were particularly rare in their element to begin with, so there hadn’t been much reason to panic, but after three hundred years there was sure to be quite a buildup of ore, in addition to demand for someone to carry on the processing skills for it, so the reward was to release a bunch of that ore to Makoto and the others, logically.

 Then again, even if they flung out all the ore from way back, dungeons had unlimited supply in them, so it didn’t really matter that much.

「The equipment has problems with weight, sound, etc, so making the equipment with those sorts of metals seems to be something Hiroshi and I should handle, but the weapons, we can probably make super strong and flashy for everyone.」

「I can barely handle orichalcum, but my success rate with adamantite is close to zero, and hihiirogane is way too unique for us to even try.」

「This is the perfect opportunity to train, don’tcha think?」

「After we talk to Sensei.」

 Now that they heard about getting their hands on high-quality material, there was no turning back. And they had too much time on their hands. Sure, it would be a bit too dangerous to go all the way to the depths without Hiroshi there, but if they were just going to a relatively close area to see if they could break through the poison gas, then surely that wouldn’t be a problem.

 Without hiding their greed (in fact, they were completely open about it), the group proceeded the conversation onward. In fact, there was no doubt that even high class cuisine could never bring out as much motivation as this did.

「Then tomorrow is dungeon exploration time.」

「No objections.」

「I’ll go with whatever you guys do.」

「Then it’s a go.」

 Their desires completely stimulated by the word “new equipment”, the whole group decided with unanimity to become guinea pigs. At this point, Tatsuya had completely forgotten to tell the group all the rumors he had heard. Not that this was particularly high on their list of important or urgent affairs, but had they actually discussed the information he had gathered, there was another route they may have gone, but now he had utterly forgotten it.

「Seeing as we’re exploring, is it cool if I dig through some wall for my practice?」

「Sure, why not?」

「Tatsuya-san, Makoto-san. What’re we going to find deeper in?」

「They’ve apparently found giant centipedes and other monsters like that.」

「Well, even if you say giant, they’re only about half a meter.」

 Albeit on the light side, now that they were going to be exploring the dungeon, Haruna lost any opportunity to bring up the discussion with Makoto back at the food stand, so she figured since Hiroshi wasn’t even there, she figured she may as well wait until the smelting furnace deal was all over with as she got to advancing arrangements for tomorrow. The question of how badly Hiroshi wanted to return would not end up being asked until quite a bit later.


One Comment

  1. Thanks for the new chapter!

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