Chapter 147 – The First Move
Machine Translator: Shif
Editors: Argos Yesu
Stern looked at Laura and said, “You’re not kidding, right, Miss Laura?”
Laura smiled slightly. “This matter, I really cannot joke about it. I have truly found a food source, except that these grains are quite different.
Laura clapped her hands and Searle immediately took out two sacks. Laura opened the sacks and explained to Stern, “This is the grain I have found. The method to make it edible is very simple.”
Stern took the paper from Laura’s hand, his sight not leaving the sacks of corn kernels and cornmeal as this was the first time he had seen such grains.
It took a moment before Stern completely recovered and then he carefully read the paper in his hand. There weren’t many words and the method seemed quite simple as Stern finished reading.
After reading, Stern placed the paper down and looked at Laura, asking, “Miss Laura, how much would these grains be?”
Laura lightly smiled and said, “These grains were from my friend and he stated that he doesn’t want to see the citizens of the Purcell Duchy suffer. Therefore, he took out one million kilograms and placed the price at the same as the common bamboo rice.“
Stern began to breathe rapidly as he became excited. He immediately said, “Miss Laura, can I have the pleasure of seeing your friend?”
Laura looked at Stern and understood what he meant, but shook her head. “I’m sorry Stern elder. My friend does not like dealing with people. But rest assured, I can guarantee that he has the food.”
Stern also knew that this request was somewhat impolite and immediately moved on. “Alright, but this thing will be quite laborious. May I know what help Miss Laura requires?”
Laura nodded and said, “Stern elder has possibly already known that once the news of the Ica plains infestation comes out, everyone in the Purcell Duchy will surely panic. When this happens, our Higanbana firm can do nothing about it, so we’re asking the Purcell clan to act first.”
Stern nodded his head, saying, “That’s not a problem. Please don’t worry about it Miss Laura. But to be honest, Miss Laura, a million kilograms of these grains won’t be sufficient.”
Laura smiled. “Please don’t worry Stern elder, after the million kilograms are sold, my friend said that he will provide one hundred seventy five thousand kilograms of grains to us every day. That should be sufficient, right?”
Stern laughed and said, “Enough, it’s enough. Miss Laura, please do send my thanks to your friend.”
Laura smiled slightly saying, “Elder, worry not, Laura will definitely do so. We set three days in the future as the time for when I shall leave to get the grains. I would like to ask the elder to help us with security. ”
Stern understood what Laura meant. A coldness flashed in his eyes as he said, “Miss Laura, please do not worry. In the Purcell Duchy, no one can defy the Purcell clan.”
Laura nodded, stood up, and said, “Then Laura bids farewell and asks the elder not to worry. Although my friend and the Purcell clan has a little friction between them, he will not lie in regards to this matter. I will stake my own life as guarantee.”
Stern was surprised for a moment as he didn’t quite understand what she meant. This friend of Laura, who had a very good relationship with her, actually had a small grudge with the Purcell clan?
The words here made Stern’s complexion change as he thought of someone. Sometime ago, this person who lived outside Casa City made the Purcell clan face defeat.
Now more convinced, that person who had a grudge with the Purcell clan was also the same person that had a very good relationship with Laura..Some time ago, Laura had contacted that person, and that person had also produced a particularly good magic radish. Since that man also saved Laura’s life, Stern hadn’t cared if they did have some contact.
It now appeared that Laura’s source of grains was that man. After making these conclusions, Stern couldn’t sit still and immediately stood up while shouting, “Send someone to investigate all of the people that Laura had recently contacted, quickly!”
Soon, servants reported their findings to Stern. Among Laura’s most recent contacts, only Zhao Hai and his warrior follower stood out. Stern understood that Laura’s grains surely came from Zhao Hai.
After determining this point, Stern’s face couldn’t help but get ugly. Now that he knew what Laura meant before, he understood that Laura knew he would soon found out where she obtained the grains. She even told him he couldn’t speak to the source. Except, would saying this make Stern feel more relieved?
This time, how could Stern possibly believe it when the grains came from a personal enemy of the clan. He immediately told the Purcell clan’s elders assembly, since this matter was beyond his capabilities.
Laura had already perceived that the Purcell family would investigate the source of the grains, but she wasn’t worried. Right now, if the Purcell clan won’t work with her, then they could only watch as the other large firms tear the meat from their bodies. This would be intolerable for the Purcell clan.
Great and large aristocratic nobility had their own pride. This time, the chamber of commerce’s large firms had joined together against them. Although the Purcell clan couldn’t use force, they wouldn’t just stand around and face this shame. Seeing the chance to fight back, how could they miss it?
The decision of the Purcell clan wasn’t out of Laura’s expectations. Even though they had a relatively large hatred towards Zhao Hai, the large firms were far more excessive at the moment. So, the Purcell clan decided to solve the issue with the large firms first, then with Zhao Hai later.
Like any other large clan, in the eyes of the Purcell clan, there were no permanent enemies, only permanent interests. They would sacrifice everything just to meet the interests of the clan. Even if Zhao Hai exterminated a hundred of their own people, or even if it were a thousand, as long as the benefits were greater they would immediately became friends with Zhao Hai. Such is the survival principles of the large clans.
So when Laura went to the Purcell clan the next day, Stern, this time, discussed the cooperation matter with Laura.
Seeing how Stern reacted made Laura understand what the Purcell clan planned to do. She ignored that topic and only discussed the terms and details of their cooperation.
After the discussion, Laura immediately left for Stony Mountain to gather the grains. This time, while they were delivering the grains, experts from the Purcell family were there to protect them.
After Laura’s caravan left, the Purcell clan announced that the infestation in the Ica plains never happened and that the production of grains was still ongoing.
When this news came out, it shook the world. Not only within the Purcell Duchy, but also in the surrounding areas. People in the surrounding areas had surely understood why the price of the grain had gone up. It was because some time ago, the large firms began hoarding that grain.
But then the Purcell clan announced their news. Although they knew that the Ica plains won’t have any grains being produced, they said that their supply of food would have no problems and they guaranteed a steady supply.
Even though they announced it, the food consumption in the Purcell Duchy was still quite big. Thus, the price of grains slowly rose, but not very high. It was due to the Purcell clan and Higanbana firm’s efforts in simultaneously selling grains at a fair price. The Purcell clan placed a limit on all the Higanbana shops and Purcell clan’s food stores. Only those who held proof of residence in the Purcell Duchy could buy from there, and they could only buy a limited amount.
This was the method Laura and the Purcell clan had thought out. They spread the news of the Ica plain situation first, then started selling grains at a fair price. For fear that the large merchants might buy tons and resell them, they could only use this certification and limitation method.
This method really caught the large firms unprepared. These firms hadn’t expected the Purcell clan to still say they could produce grains. This play of cards didn’t fit what they had expected, placing them in chaos.
These firms had even thought the Purcell clan had begun to dip into their stockpiled wartime provisions. When they wanted to increase the price of grains, the Purcell clan could immediately move to control it.
The wartime provisions in every territory, whether large or small, would not be less than ten thousand kilograms. One wouldn’t usually use this reserve because it was meant for war and combat preparations. If you easily used up the reserves, then soldiers would not have access to food when war came. Thus, the soldiers would be weakened and it would be easy to subjugate the territory.
Although recently there hadn’t been any wars, the Purcell Duchy shouldn’t just use their wartime provisions. The duchy was situated in the northern area of the Aksu empire. To the east it faced the Black Wastes which had no risk of conflict. The west and south were the areas of two other nobles, the Kousa and Polanton clans, which as a rule won’t have any conflicts. At the northern boundary, however, was the Beastfolk Prairies which were not so peaceful.
The beastfolk were militant. Although they could get along well with the Terrans, the condition in the Beastfolk Prairies were harsh. Beastfolk primarily grazed, but also had to encounter disasters. Their way of life was difficult, which was why they plundered the south.
The Purcell clan, like any other noble clan, made rapid development when having a great relationship with the beastfolk. At the same time they raised massive armies as defense against beastfolk raids.
In the past few years, however, the situation in the Beastfolk Prairies was very good. Meaning, there were less raids towards the south. Due to this, the Purcell clan enjoyed very lucrative business with the beastfolk.
Even so, the Purcell clan should not spend their wartime provisions. This meant risking the Purcell clan’s safety. If it was just to save some gold, then it wasn’t worth it.
-This chapter was MTL’ed. Please leave a comment for constructive criticisms and advice. Thanks.
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-Please check out the Editor’s footnotes, thanks.
- 克萨 – Kè sà. Pronunciation is closer to Koa than Ke or Ki. 波兰顿 – bōlán dùn. The bōlán part is actually used for Poland and the dùn is how it looks, maybe with a sharper sound on the d. Together, I just removed the d in Poland and replaced it with Ton… so you get Polanton. Not that I think this will matter, ever.↩
- 兽人 – Shòurén and 兽人草原 – Shòurén Cǎoyuán. One of the translations for this term, Shòurén, is Orc and that these were the Orc Prairies. This is wrong. Shòurén literally means Beast People and later parts of the story will reveal that each of the groups of this race will have characteristics matching their tribe’s name. The term we will use is Beastfolk instead of Beastmen because we want to make the race distinct from “men” or humans. If you think that we’re wrong and that it should be orc, then just think about the Hawk tribe which fricken flies.↩
- 人族 – Rénzú. Lit. Terrans. Now as some may have noticed, we term all of the races in lowercase. For example, elves, humans, dwarves, and beastfolk. There is a grammatical reason for this, and that is because these terms don’t have any noun basis for them. Terrans is for Terra, the same way you’d have Martians for Mars. If it’s a race, then you’d have Chinese (China) or Mongols (Mongolia). On the other hand, elves, humans, and beastfolk are not derived from a location. While you may note the “Beastfolk Prairies”, it won’t really work because one was named after the other. Terrans were named after Terra, but it’s highly doubtful the Beastfolk were named after the Beastfolk Prairies.↩