Volume 4 Chapter 2-2: Secret Maneuvers

 


If she were to learn even just the iron-working technology she would even be able to manipulate the international power balance to some degree. Her country the Colline Kingdom with greater national power would be able to fight the Empire at an advantage if such weapons were acquired.

The scarier thing was that this knowledge could be sold to other countries instead. If that occurred then a strong military nation could be created within a few years.

Up until now the Empire had ruled the Elf Village on paper and she was reluctant to interfere because it could possibly reignite the flames of war with the Empire…however after recent events the Elves had obtained independence and interaction with them was far easier. After such a crushing defeat it was impossible for the Empire to still claim that they ruled over them.

She had snuck some soldiers a short distance from the Elf Village so they could secure the refugees under the excuse of ‘protecting them’. In reality they would take custody of them and extract any useful knowledge they had…however these preparations had gone to waste.

「This new Elf Chief surely has a good sense for economics. If he thoughtlessly declared independence from the Empire then the village would starve and collapse. That didn’t happen, and on top of it they were able to fight a second battle without starvation and even had enough leeway to help refugees. Quite the capable person.」

The blue haired girl put her thoughts into words and began to desire the Elf Chief even further.

She’d heard they were quite young as well…preferably…

「Might not be terrible to consider them as a spouse. Well that’s something I could only decided after meeting them. If they’re not good looking I wouldn’t want them.」

「Think about your position please, if they were to be your husband then they would be the country’s….」

「That shall not be. I did not desire that so I accepted exile. My siblings back home will take care of that, it will never be my turn. So don’t call me (Ohime-sama) Princess Jii, keep calling me Ojou-sama.」

Seeing the girl laugh so indifferently caused the woman’s face to warp slightly for a moment, however she returned to her usual smile shortly after.

「….if that is what you desire Ojou-sama. Ojou-sama I have prepared a small tidbit of information regarding Elves as an apology for being unable to learn what you wished on this occasion.」

The woman snapped her fingers and signaled as a maid opened the door and entered.

She carried a plate over to the desk and placed it down. The plate held some baked goods and a brown syrup plus two bottles.

「What might this be?」

「Yes, as a matter of fact Elves have entered Erin to do some mercantile business using these. Considering the booking at the inn they will begin in earnest tomorrow.」

「How considerate. Even so I’m surprised to hear they will be doing business. I was under the impression that the only goods they had to sell were fur, leather, and dried meat…then I must give this a try.」

The girl took the baked treat and cut it with a fork and knife before placing it in her mouth.

After a single bite her eyes opened wide and she quickly ate up the rest of it leaving the plate empty.

「That was delicious. That’s the first time I’ve had food with that kind of texture and wonderful sweetness. It has a bit of bitterness unlike sugar…such a delicious treat would sell as much as they wanted….how much is it?」

「One for a silver.」

「Such a delicious thing is only a silver? They’ll sell like mad.」

「Yes they are very alluring. They give off a delicious smell that makes you stop. It’s delicious when cold but even better when hot and you can’t help but have another….」

「Yes, Jii had two of them in an instant.」

「Well! Let’s leave that aside! The other two are also amazing.」

The woman said quickly as she broke into a slight cold sweat.

「One of them is the brown sauce that was on the baked treat. It’s called syrup and it sells for a gold.」

「So it’s around the same value as sugar.」

「Yes, but I bought it after realizing the appeal of the baked goods. I even bought two bottles for myself.」

「……I didn’t ask…but truly it is delicious. It has a high class flavor. Even if it’s a gold then I would buy 100 bottles. Even the bottles are amazing. They’re so clear like crystal…and there’s a design of a bow, some ivy, and a fox tail? How cute. You can’t even make these in Erin, it’s a work of art. Even the bottle alone I could see selling for a gold.」

「The merchants also thought that and tried to gather to buy some in a fuss, but you are only allowed to buy 2 per person. The total amount to sell is predetermined and if you let the chance go tomorrow then you would have to wait til next month for a new delivery.」

The blue haired girl placed her hand on her chin as she thought.

Was it because they couldn’t make enough at once? Or was it…?

「It should be an attempt to build a brand. Rather than selling everything they have all at once they are limiting the amount sold to raise their recognition. The quality of the bottles must be a part of that as well.」

「I agree. Finally we have alcohol. It appears to use the syrup as raw materials and is called Erucy Wine. This one costs 20 silver.」

「Quite the confident price. Even a single silver can afford a fairly good wine.」

「Even so I am expecting good things. As expected I could not sample it while I was on duty.」

「Is that so? Then just watch as I enjoy it.」

「Ojou-sama would you truly drink alcohol while you still have work to do?」

「Even if I drink quite a bit, my body isn’t that weak as to be affected. Plus it is something I need to taste from the Elves. This can be considered work. You can drink some too Jii.」

The woman smiled wryly and poured the alcohol into some glasses.

It smelled sweet and sour with a scent that struck you deep in your chest.

They clinked their glasses together, cheered, and enjoyed the flavor slowly.

「What a good drink. Even this I could see spending 20 silver on. It’s sweet but that disappears naturally. The aftertaste is incredible. It is just acidic enough…this should be from cranberries. Even the water used is delicious and fresh. A clean refreshing alcohol I could drink forever. Jii, buy a lot, I like it. If they only allow two per person then bring 10 servants and buy some. I can keep it for gifts as well.」

The blue haired girl was truly surprised.

She never expected for these three products from the Elves to be so incredible. Never would she imagine such attractive products from them.

If this is the case, a small amount of luggage can be transported and used to generate huge profits in a short period of time. A small Elf Village could be fed even if they only sold goods once per month.

「I wonder how much knowledge the new Elf Chief can possibly have. Truly delicious…a small village can do what even our city cannot….ah, Jii you went to buy these goods yourself right? Did you see someone who seemed like the chief?」

「Yes, I bought the goods from a man that they called Chief, so there should be no mistake.」

「Handsome?」

She asked, and the woman answered reluctantly.

「Yes, he’s handsome. However, he seems even younger than you Ojou-sama. He couldn’t be any older than his teens.」

「Well I quite like younger men. I’m starting to want him more and more, I’ll definitely obtain them.」

「Then…what if you were refused?」

「War」

At that single word the woman froze.

「Are you crazy? You’d fight against a monster who could wipe out a force of 4,500 Imperial soldiers?」

The blue haired girl smiled impishly upon hearing those words.

「Well there’s not just one way of fighting a war. We can invade them culturally, or even utilize a trade war. Those are both splendid battles. Furthermore Erin is absolutely in the advantage. Without the City of Erin then the Elf Village can’t continue on. Well, let’s make our preparations to go to their village.」

「You won’t call them here? They’ve already arrived after all.」

「Firstly I want to see the elf village, and I think it’s better to go there since it’ll give a better impression, right? I have to adjust my schedule so that I can be away for a few days.」

As the blue-haired girl whistled, she began to think about how to scout the Elven Chief.


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