The next day a war council was commenced in the former Chief’s home.
The ones here were me in the capacity as Chief, my representative when I am not available Roleau, 5 Elder Heads of various families in the village, and Kuu as the representative of the Fire Foxes. We had 8 in total.
The Elf Village had been controlled extensively by the Chief for quite some time. The system was for the Chief to hear the opinions of others and make all the final decisions himself. Therefore, technically my decision would be taken as that of Erucy as a whole.
Eventually we’d have to reform a bit, but for now it was very convenient so I would let it be.
Though I say that, if I ignored everyone’s advice and did things as I pleased I would simply garner antipathy. I would have to put together an argument that would convince the majority of the people here.
「The purpose of our gathering here is to discuss nothing less than Erucy’s future. More specifically we must focus on how to strengthen Erucy.」
That was the main topic of our agenda. It was also important for the set-up for my hidden agenda.
「Before speaking of the future of Erucy, we must first share its present condition. Erucy has become far more affluent than when we were under the control of the Empire. The amount of wheat we have stored away is far more than last year and we will not have to worry about our taxes being collected. Furthermore, the efforts of Roleau and the others to cultivate new fields has been progressing well. Our next year harvests should increase by quite a bit. Our dried meat and preserved food is similarly plentiful….this is also an achievement by Roleau and the others. The number of successful hunts has increased.」
As I spoke Roleau’s name with praise he had an expression with some pride and some humility.
「Don’t overpraise us Chief. It’s part of your ability. Those crossbows you made allow us to fire one shot to kill. Plus the field cultivation is moving faster because of the iron farming tools and the well you helped dig.」
「That’s not it. I simply provided the environment for it. The ones who accomplished this are you guys. As your Chief I am thankful.」
「I-is that so? Hehe…that’s kinda embarrassing…」
He laughed cheerfully. For better or worse Roleau was a simple man and was easy to handle. Despite that he was trusted by others. I wanted him to be my ally in this so I decided to uplift him a bit.
「We have become able to obtain valuable salt with ease and if something happens we have quite a bit stored away. The ability to stably obtain goat milk and cheese is also a big change. Once spring comes around we should be able to harvest the turnips and in the summer we can harvest potatoes. This is thanks to the Fire Foxes. Their efforts have helped ensure a more abundant livelihood for the rest of us.」
As I said those words I quickly observed the faces of everyone present here.
Kuu had seen through my intent and had a wry smile on her face and the elves nodded, seemingly pleased with the more abundant lifestyle we had achieved. However, one elf man had a momentary look of displeasure on his face before masking it with a false smile.
….as I thought. He had been marked by Roleau’s group as a man who had probably clandestinely met with Empire Agents when I left the village….his name was Raffa. I didn’t want to believe. I had nothing more than the word of his observer and that he was a past favorite of the old chief.
Raffa was a kind adult. He was 20 years older than me in his thirties. He had been born into an old Elven house that had led for many years. They were well liked by self-righteous chiefs.
He was also well respected by the villagers. However, after his family fell prey to an epidemic he became incapable of physical labor. It was decided that his house did not have much of a future and his wife and child were sent off to the Empire as scapegoats. Since then he’s gone a bit strange.
Keeping that in mind I continued my explanation of the status quo.
「Also within the next two months we will be able to earn foreign cash flow through a new special product we can make. After inspecting the market on our trip I can say with confidence this will earn us money. That money can be exchanged for more food or pleasure goods. Not only that the special product will help in the production of alcohol. I’d have to check the forest conditions a bit more, but we should be alright for ingredients as well. They’re growing properly. The creation issues should be mostly solved as well. With the Fire Foxes’ power we can accomplish these things. To be honest, the first time I made alcohol I was worried since we didn’t have anyone else but me to help with the process.」
「Oi Chief…is that alcohol tasty?」
「Roleau, has any event I put together ever had anything bad?」
「Nope never. Guess I can look forward to it.」
Roleau was weak to liquor and got drunk easily. He became pretty annoying when drunk but still loved to drink.
No, more accurately both Elves and Fire Foxes loved alcohol. If we were able to produce it then it might even inspire them to live life to the fullest.