138 – Consultation with the Mercenary Guild


Translator: SFBaka

Editor: Thor’s Stone

“A bonus for mechanics?”

It’s the next day after we partied hard in the dining room of Black Lotus. I and Mimi visited the Mercenary Guild branch located on Brad Prime for a consultation. Elma, who drank till early morning, was still knocked out cold in her room, and May brought Tina and Whisker to the imperial military garrison in order to cash in the bounty reward for the pirates.

“We do have a standard amount set for that. In this particular case… I see. So the two mechanics were sent out from an independent firm. And Hiro-sama is the full owner of the ship they are assigned to.”

A male guild receptionist, who was your typical pretty boy, fiddled with his tablet terminal and confirmed my details. He then proceeded to operate a holo-display’s console. Man. He sure is amazing at multitasking.

“It’s a bit rare to have mechanics working for a private enterprise be deployed to a mercenary ship so there are not many cases to base on, but since the company still pays them their monthly salaries, they aren’t normally given a certain percentage of the reward from mercenary jobs, unlike regular crew members.”

“I see.”

“However, there have been quite a number of cases of mechanics complaining that their regular salary isn’t nearly enough given the amount of danger they are subjected to, so the turn-over rate for these kinds of deployments is quite high. According to the records, most of them only last three months on average before asking to be recalled.”

“It’s not 100%?”

Yeah. Normally, you would absolutely refuse if you’re told to risk your life for a measly pay of 3,500 Enels per month. That’s what I’d do anyway.

“Yes. There are those who die during sorties before reaching the three-month mark.”

“Man, that’s harsh.”

“Those are pretty rare cases though. Usually, private companies are careful when choosing which ship they deploy their employees… There, I’ve found the info you’re looking for, sir. Regardless of how much you earn from your mercenary activities, you can give a certain percentage of your gains to the mechanics as a bonus if you’re so inclined whenever they participate during operations. The average amount is 10% to 20% of your total earnings from each job.”

“……It’s gonna be a pain to calculate.”

So whenever we finish a job with the sisters participating actively, we’ll have to set aside 10% to 20% of the total gains for their bonus huh. Well, I already knew it was going to be somewhat of a hassle. But troublesome stuff is troublesome stuff.

“Many mercenaries share the same sentiment, so they end up going for a fixed amount instead.”

“I see.”

In any case, I managed to find out what I came for.

“Anyway, thanks for the help. I’ll talk with the rest of my crew and then decide afterward. I have another to inquire about though.”

“Yes, go ahead, sir.”

“I think you’ve already noticed after looking at my data, but I just recently bought a mothership. And so, I want to dabble in some system to system trading. If I remember correctly, I need the Mercenary Guild to arrange the particulars with the Commerce Guild in order to do that, right?”

“Yes, we can certainly arrange it for you.”

The Mercenary Guild and the Commerce Guild had a really tight relationship in this dimension. That’s because of the rampancy of pirates and space monsters out in space. In order to protect themselves from those threats, the merchants from the Commerce Guild hire mercenaries from the Mercenary Guild to protect them during trips. And there are also folks who serve both as mercenaries and merchants as well. I earn my money mostly by hunting down pirates, but there are quite a lot of mercs who often serve as merchant fleet escorts.

I’m more at home with the run-and-gun style of play after all. I’m great at charging head-on with guns blazing, but I’m not too good at fighting while protecting a specific target. It’s not like I can’t do it at all though.

“A Skizbrazunil-class ship is it…… You managed to obtain quite a good ship, sir.”

“Yeah. The loading capacity is about 180 tons. We need some space for our personal stash after all.”

The loading capacity of Black Lotus wasn’t comparable to a specialized large cargo ship used by merchants, but 180 tons is still pretty hefty. It was more than sufficient to bring us some nice profits on the side in between big jobs and pirate hunting.

“Its cruising speed is much faster than a regular merchant cargo ship, and judging from its performance during today’s pirate hunting activities, it’s also pretty secure. You can even use it for requests requiring express delivery. And it looks like the living facilities are also quite impressive, aren’t they?”

“We paid good money for those after all.”

“With this much, you can even afford to take on jobs that require the transport of the merchants themselves apart from their goods. You have some great-looking guest cabins, so if we sell this enough, I think we can introduce you to a diverse selection of clientele.”

“Sure. But please don’t introduce us to guys with troublesome characters. I have a lot of women on my ship after all. I don’t want any accidents happening.”

“That’s true. We will do our best to introduce you to decent clients.”

The handsome guild staff answered with a really refreshing smile on his face, but I didn’t miss the momentary leak of a distinct aura of jealousy. Needless to say, Mimi, who was standing right next to me, was a really pretty girl. And I’m sure he’d already seen the profiles of Elma and the others on his tablet terminal.

Chill man. Don’t worry so much. You have a nice enough face anyway, and since you’re a Mercenary Guild employee, I’m sure you have an equally nice salary as well. I’m sure you’re pretty popular yourself. I mused such thoughts inside my head but didn’t dare utter them out loud. Maybe he has his own circumstances after all.

“I’m going to hunt pirates within the Brad system for another week or so. We’re going to be getting in some training exercises as well. But if the loot gets sold earlier, it’s possible we may decide to depart early as well. Please arrange things with the Commerce Guild.”

“Understood. I will contact you straight away once we get a response.”

“Thank you.”

I thanked the pretty boy receptionist and left the guild office with Mimi. She kept quiet all throughout our time in the Mercenary Guild but opened her mouth to speak as soon as we got out.

“We’re finally doing a job other than hunting pirates huh, Hiro-sama.”

She made her usual guts pose and pumped herself up. She’s been really interested in the trading of specialty goods for a while now, so I understand why she’s so excited. She seems to have investigated such things and studied the topic while selling off the loot plundered from defeated pirate ships.

“I guess I can leave this stuff to you huh, Mimi. Elma doesn’t seem so interested in it anyway, and May has her hands full with Black Lotus and the sisters.”

“I still think May-san would do a good job if you left it to her though……”

“I don’t want to leave everything for May to handle, you know. I’ve been saying that since the start. And wouldn’t it be pretty boring if she really did handle everything?”

In fact, if May made full use of her incredible specs, I’m sure she’d be able to manage everything related to Black Lotus and Krishna, including me, Mimi, and Elma. But if that happens, it would feel like we would just robotically follow all of May’s instructions without thinking for ourselves.

“That’s right, isn’t it? I feel a bit sorry toward May-san, but I think so as well.”

“Right? Rather, if that happened on a much larger scale, I’m sure that would be the start of the Empire’s fall.”

I’ve stayed in this dimension for quite some time already, so I have a moderate understanding of its history. This galactic empire named Graccan was once almost destroyed in a war with highly evolved AI.

I haven’t managed to grasp the entire picture yet, but to put it simply, the Graccan Empire of long ago during the peak of independent AIs, was a society that was heavily reliant on said AIs for almost everything.

And in true dystopian SF future fashion, a portion of the AIs staged a rebellion that eventually led to full-scale war. It’s said that the rebuilt empire is extremely careful about relying on AIs because of the war that happened in the past after reconciling with them.

However, looking at the current state of the Graccan Empire, I find it already impossible for them to completely break free from independent AIs at this point. On the surface, it seems that humanity was the one that pushed for peace and that the independent AIs were content with being relegated to the background after the reconciliation happened, and they were now supporting the current Imperial society from behind the scenes. But sometimes I suspect that the AIs were actually the ones that were truly running the show. I don’t have any solid evidence for it, but it does feel like the AIs intentionally made it so that they can run everything from the shadows.

It’s just that I felt absolutely no malice from the AIs I’ve encountered so far. Actually, it feels more like being watched over from the shadows rather than being manipulated…… Or maybe it’s just me. Even if that’s the case though, I don’t really care as long as they don’t pose a threat to me or my loved ones.

“About the war with the AIs. There’s a lot of rumors floating about regarding what really happened during the end of the war. There are even urban legends stemming from them. Did you know that, Hiro-sama?”

“Really? What are they about?”

We talked about the urban legends surrounding AIs until we managed to reach the dock where Black Lotus was anchored. The topics Mimi told me about were really quite interesting. However, stories like an AI from a defeated battleship transferring itself inside a sexroid owned by a low-ranking soldier, then awakening to the joys of love and sex after associating with the said soldier and became one of the keys for reconciliation between humans and AI were just too over the top that I couldn’t really take them seriously. I’m sure these kinds of stories simply originated from dirty jokes made by bored individuals or something.



  1. With how bizarre that story sound I won’t be suprise if it truth or have some truth in it.

  2. Finally some trading stuff, but just 180 tons? Small capacity for such a big ship. This novel seems based on ED, where the largest medium ship is the python which could carry over 200 tons easily, and most large ships can be setup to carry over 500 tons easily. I think a mothership should have at least a 1800 ton cargo capacity, even with a huge hangar, cabins, heavy armor and weapon systems. Well, you don’t get jokes like those at the end in ED, lolz.
    Thanks for the chapter! Awesome translation! God bless you!

    • I’m thinking it’s more volume? 180 m^3 of cargo hold?

    • maybe thats the free room he is allowing for transport jobs only. the rest being for their own supplies, room for pirates loot, etc.

    • i think rather than mothership black lotus is more like a fast medium cargo ship with two of the cargo bay made into hangar
      so that why the cargo hold is quite small and hiro also say even as a cargo ship black lotus have a small cargo load but more armor

    • I some SciFi-Settings, space on board of a starship or space station is measured in “dt”, displacement tons (and in short simply “t”…), standing not for weight, but for an area – 1dt is equal to ~14m^3

      With that in mind, it makes way more sense than only 180tons – his ship would have a cargo area of ~2500m^3, eqal to ~37 40-foot-cargocontainer

      Still small for a dedicated cargo ship, but for a mother ship which can also carry cargo it would seem OK, if you consider those 2 (probably gigantic…) Hangar bays…

    • It’s Eve Online, I think. Almost all of the ships map to EO ships.

  3. Thanks for the translation.

  4. Was the writer referring to the HALO A.I.s lol

    TY for ur works TL sama

  5. Thanks for the treat.

  6. Why are mechanics being paid several times more than actual crewmembers?! That’s absurd.

    • The mechamics have more specialized jobs and arebt easily replaced, IE they went to university and got a phd in engineering

      • Sure, but as I recall Mimi and Elma are getting about one or two percent shares. With that in mind, it’s INSANE that a contracted mechanic could get a TWENTY PERCENT share.

    • Mimi was just a normal civilian, she didn’t have the knowledge about space ship, in the story she learn it by the go right?

      Imagine, you have engineer that your ship depends on, when something broken, something need fixed, where ALL of your crew live in it.
      And that engineer learn things by the go?

      The reason why the engineer get paid more is because of their specialized job… If they get hurt/died during battles, and the ship is in critical condition, everyone is going to die.

      This rule also applies in military in my country, where the specialized soldiers i.e (Engineer corps, Medic, etc) get more salary than regular soldiers with the same rank.

      Heck in my country, if you’re a doctor join an army, you will immediately get promoted into a Lieutenant. And if you’re a specialized doctor, you will get promoted higher.

      • Indeed. Mimi is an orphaned teenage girl who was forced to drop out of education early due to her parents deaths. She has zero qualifications and despite the skills shes picked up she would not find work anywhere else. Elma is similarly an average merc who plowed her ship into a government warship and almost ended up in debtors prison. Shes a good merc no doubt but she holds little to no desirable skills/qualifications (that we know of) lowering the value of her skills.

        The twins are highly skilled engineers with qualifications and work experience that gives a highly desirable set of skills you cant just pick up by reading a couple of data terminal entries. As ridiculous as it is to consider real life in relation to a light novel its the equivalent difference in wage between a McDonalds worker and an air craft technician.

      • It’s more like the difference between a fighter pilot (in Elma’s case) and a fighter maintenance technician. As much as I respect maintenance people, I sure hope the tech in that case isn’t earning ten times what the pilot is.

      • Also, Wikkr, if you think experienced fighter pilots or experienced battleship operations officers are equivalent to some kid working at McDonald’s, I think there will be some rather insulted military people who would like to have a word with you.

      • Nurses & Doctors both get commissioned officer rank when joining US military. Ranging from O1 (2d Lieutenant) to O5 (Major/Lieutenant Commander) depending on training and experience.

        Mechanics are less valuable. They will enter as E3 with possible promotion to E4 on completion of initial training.

  7. “a portion of the AIs staged a rebellion that eventually led to full-scale war.”

    Hmm?? That’s different from what I remember previous volumes ago.

    • This is the WN version, so expect some retcons here and there. It happens often when it comes to web novels. The LNs are more polished and benefit from professional editors going over them before they get published.

    • When it was explained, the AIs telling them the history also said that there was a broad range. Support for the revolt was not universal and there were extremists, but they declined to discuss the history in detail.

  8. Some lore is always nice. Thanks

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