Chapter 168: Using cute clothes as means of stimulating the economy is justice, but one shouldn’t shake the foundations
Translator: “Pink Tea” Editor: ”Ryunakama”
Day 52: Late Morning, The Tunnels.
Calling the soldiers that were sent to accompany Merimeri-san we begin the confirmation process. I wish they sent a civil official along as well? While Merimeri-san seems to have studied the current plan in detail, she doesn’t know what is going to follow it?
「Let’s see… If I remember correctly, 100 crates of iron were required yearly~? One crate was around 640kg, so that’s 64,000kg, which is 64 tons? The stuff I mined and currently have in my item bag is probably around 600 crates? So it’s 6 years’ worth of iron, but half of the vein is still remaining, what do we do? Should I mine it? Do you have a place to store it? Just the stuff I already have is already close to 400 tons? The rest is probably close to that as well? I guess?」
For starters, I mined half of the iron vein and stored it into the item bag. I had to mine at least half of it to reach the vein-of-what-might-be-mithril beneath it. I can mine the remaining half as well, but that raises the question of storage. It’s quite a weight, so it might even collapse the storehouse. Well, I can also mine everything and have it for safekeeping.
「6 years worth? The iron that will take six years to use? You said 400 tons, you are asking about the storage for 400,000kg of iron? Ueh? 600 crates of iron ore? EEEEEeh!」
Even if it’s 6 years according to the plan, it tends to still not be enough in the end? Even if at the moment it seems like an unimaginable amount, with the production growing day by day the amount used will also grow? It probably will last only 3 years at most? Since the frontier is still developing there are plenty of factors that might lead to an increase in demand, it’s merely that the manufacturing still hasn’t caught up. If ironworks become operational this amount might not last even a year? That’s all the plans amount to, you know?
Since I, the person with experience in that regard, say that, that is for sure? No matter how much I prepare, it’s always not enough? Naturally, the data comes from a certain group of 20 highschool girls. By the way, the calculation method is the following, in case a plentiful number, 60 stockings, were prepared for 20 girls, there will be more than 100 additional orders? Or rather, there were? For kneesocks and fishnet tights separately? Since it is multicolor, capable of receiving mana, they are sturdy and should last a while. Despite no chance of wearing them down, they claim that each of them requires at the very least 8 pairs. I think if I release stockings with new patterns they will buy those as well? No matter how much margin I leave in my calculations, I always end up with more night shift work? While dungeon exploration is off for today, the home industry is very much on?
It seems they don’t even have a place to store such an amount of ore, so that’s enough iron for now. I also took like 30 tons, if it turns out to be not enough I can always come back. The veins near the town are still untouched, so 2,000 tons can be mined within a day. And so, it’s time for that mithril-like metal. Pouring mana to the metal lying in the earth’s depths I then grasp it with Holding, then, using Gravity Magic, slowly carry it out. I’m not going to risk using Teleportation. While purging impurities with Alchemy I slowly lift it up.
「Okay, here it is? Hmmm, it’s mithrilish? The color seems to be similar, but it’s kinda muddy?」
Is it because it wasn’t processed yet? Even Appraisal says 『Metal』, probably too many impurities to identify it as a single metal. But this is probably it. The way mana passes through it is completely different, and it’s able to take any amount of it. And the more mana I pour, the brighter it shines, this is silvered steel, mithril.
Okay, let’s mine every last bit of it. I’m sure no matter how much of it I get it still won’t be enough in the end. After I upgrade all of the equipment with mithril, I will have to mithrilify it further. I will need as much of it as required to upgrade the equipment to the highest grade, when it will not be possible to improve it with mithril anymore. And I’m not sure the day when we will be able to get a full set of highest grade equipment for 30 people will ever come. That’s why even if I deplete the vein it surely won’t be enough.
「Hmm~m? I guess this is all of it? Is there really nothing left? I’m also hungry, so I’d like to have lunch already? I’m going to wrap this up, okay?」
「Why are you talking to the ore vein? Are you actually friends or something? It is indeed lunchtime soon, but how come you are finished with several months of construction work before lunch?」
I wouldn’t have the title of Loner if I had friends, you know? However, the ore vein was buried deep underground, therefore, isn’t there a possibility that it is actually friends with my Affection Rating? If it is friends with my Affection Rating then we might get along, but truth be told, I myself, never met my own Affection Rating? We can’t become friends without getting past even the first meeting. So it’s probably impossible, and well, I already depleted it. And, doesn’t 『I’m a friend with an ore vein』, sound way too sad? Seriously?
What’s left is to just connect the tunnel to the mining village. I already found the tunnel leading there, so I have to simply unite them, connect, go home, and jambalaya! Thanks to the lectures and protests I couldn’t eat my breakfast in peace, you know? It’s impossible to relax and enjoy the morning in such conditions! And it goes without saying that the situation was extremely risky in a highschool boy sort of way too. I’m sure if those were fishnet stockings I wouldn’t have been able to avoid additional orders.
We are almost there. I slow down the process of remodeling, or rather, tunnel creation since I don’t know how sturdy the tunnel is on the other side, and I don’t want to needlessly shake the foundations. There is also the matter of Merimeri-san’s stamping, shaking the ground but the tunnel I made is sturdy, so that shouldn’t pose a problem, Merimeri-san’s miniskirt and kneesocks are sending other sorts of trembles too, but that has nothing to do with the ground, although her guards also seem to have a hard time with where to look?
「Phew, seems like I managed to connect them? Sort of? While I’m at it I’ll also reinforce the tunnels? I don’t want to come back and dig it out again if they collapse? My free days are already endangered species, so they have to be handled with care. I’m serious. 」
And so, passing the tunnel and exiting at the mining village shall conclude the job. Since the payment was in mining rights there won’t be any money, but getting mithril is far more beneficial. It’s a huge profit, not like I can sell this though… And while Merimeri-san went to talk to the Village Chief I checked the village’s small store.
「Are there any specialties, maybe curiosities, or just the stuff that’s in excess in this village? Iron only? Are you eating it or something? It’s bad for your teeth, you know? Even if you properly chew, it’s still bad? Or actually, even worse?」
「Who the hell would eat it! Much less chew it! We have deficits, but nothing in excess aside from iron and rocks. The specialty wares are some unusual paperweights. Wanna take a look?」
Looks like they aren’t eating it. The mountain range is equally far away from rivers and the Evil Forest, so the place is not fit for agriculture. However, it was on my mind ever since coming to this world, but today, I’m going to say it aloud! It’s a middle-aged man again! Isn’t the middle-aged men-ratio too high in my vicinity? For the most part, everyone I meet is an old man? Isn’t there anything more different-world-like? Like encounters with beautiful girls?! Usually, in such cases, the shop assistant would turn out to be a cute girl, or the village chief would be a beautiful lady, or maybe a random encounter with a cute village girl, there are lots of possible scenarios? But everyone is middle-aged instead? I’m yet to see anyone but middle-aged men in this village? Is it this village’s special product? Who’d want that!?
And so we return to the town while giving a tour to the Village Chief and others. Since we are going to walk through the mine it’s not going to take that long, but it’s a tunnel again. No beautiful sceneries, novel discoveries, or unusual incidents. A tunnel with old men, okay? Not a place where I’d like to have new encounters? However, there was a discovery back in the village. Or rather, I bought all of these so-called unusual paperweights. A wholesale purchase. I mean, they had lots of mithril or whatever that is just lying around? The furnace couldn’t melt them, so they were treated as unusual paperweights, but they actually were a rare metal. Since the furnace couldn’t melt them, it must have a high melting point, so we can expect high strength and resistance from it. Just in case I made a contract for purchasing all of that mysterious metal, so there should be more of it later. As payment and a deposit, I gave them wheat, cooking oil, buckets and baskets, that I for some reason made earlier, and covered the rest of the sum by cash. Obtaining the valuable metal I once again ended up penniless. Let’s ask the president for allowance when I get back. I don’t have money to pay even for the inn or food. Even though in the morning I enjoyed being a magnate after I took all the money from the Adventurers’ Guild, the general store, and the weapon store, I’m broke again? I remember making a lot of orders. And then blowing it all on the rare metal. Or rather, there is a need to buy up something every day? If not for the funds that the president confiscated from me, I might’ve had trouble even paying for the inn? But if I deposit money with her I won’t be able to make huge purchases?
The girls’ payment of their tab is being confiscated and managed by the president, so every morning, Armored Pres-san, Slime-san, and I line up to get our allowance. But I get cash from the general store’s lady, the weapon’s store’s old man, and installment payments from Adventurers’ Guild. That’s why every morning I’m a rich man. But by nighttime I don’t have enough to pay for the inn, you know? I don’t, but despite everyone most likely forgetting, I’m still a Master, so I want to avoid borrowing money from Armored Pres-san or Slime-san? That’s why I demand a raise in allowance! Most likely, it will be met with a counter-proposal of extra orders, and steamroller voting will overturn my initiative! And so every time I go for my allowance, the night shift work increases, and as it increases, the girls’ debts keep growing, but debt repayments get confiscated, and so I end up going to ask for more allowance again, a mysterious poverty spiral from which everyone can’t break out.
The other day, I ended up without money after putting an order for a large number of eggs and got scolded, but a lack of eggs will negatively impact our delicious meals? Supporting the modern lifestyle in the medieval world takes money. And without additional investments, there won’t be an abundance of goods or food. That is the cause of this poverty spiral. The return of investments won’t happen until the frontier develops and becomes wealthy, but it won’t happen without additional investments. And the amount of cash can be increased only gradually. Though the amount of currency grows through selling magic stones and mushrooms to the kingdom’s merchants that come passing through the fake dungeon, the increase in coinage doesn’t catch up to the speed of economic development. Even so, were the frontier to issue its own currency, it would create an exchange rate, which will become a hindrance to commerce. That can wait until a complete separation from the kingdom.
Looks like there is no other choice but to take all of the kingdom’s money.
According to Merimeri-san, the frontier has exceeded even the capital by now, in other words, the production level of the capital is lower than my home industry. If we have the advantage of quality and prices, then we can pluck them off freely. If I rake off all of the capital’s coin, it will solve the cash deficit in the frontier. But if the capital then decides to issue more coin the kingdom itself might collapse? Hmmm? I mean, there is no way a high school student can control the monetary economy? It’s impossible for an ordinary high school student, you know?
If only that Whatever-kun was still alive, it might’ve been possible.
But Whatever-kun chose to kill his friends to become the strongest.
And there is no more Whatever-kun since I killed him.
So the 30 of us can’t do an advanced monetary economy on our own? I’m not sure if the Idiots understand even the concept of bartering?
「We are like sort of arrived, but can we split here? Meripapa-san’s talk always takes so long with him continuously apologizing for doing bad stuff, so it’s a real pain? Can I just deposit the iron in the storage and leave?」
「It will be a great help if you carry it to the storage, I don’t want to transport 400 tons of iron. There is no need to meet father, but he is not doing anything bad, alright? He is not apologizing, but expressing his gratitude, you know? He is bowing in gratitude!」
Now, the work is finally over, let’s go into the town. I don’t have any money though. Okay, let’s negotiate for pocket money with the president!