Volume 01: All I wanted was a little bit of freedom (3)
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** POV Allen Gower **

 

Today is a night day, so we will most likely have to close up early. Which unfortunately is not good for business * sigh *

 

Well, overall today was a slow day anyways. Probably an hour or so and we will close up. As I was thinking that I notice someone approaching the entrance. It would be nice if it was a customer, but it is Mike for the 3rd time this week * sigh *

 

He is probably here again to burrow money by pawning his slave until he gets enough money to pay back the loan he took out a month back to try to keep his failing business afloat. Personally I don’t mind since it is very obedient and hardworking. But he simply wants too much for it. There is a right price for everything.

 

As Mike opens the door I greet the enthusiastic Mike with a non-enthusiastically remark.

 

“What’s up Mike? If it is about pawning your slave again, I am not giving you a copper more!”

 

Mike though does not lose his enthusiasm as he takes a large bag off his back and puts it on the floor.

 

“It is not about that! I have a proper slave to sell you this time, and I think it is a rare find!”

 

“Is that so?” I reply still non-enthusiastically…I somehow simply can’t imagine Mike having a rare find. Still he continues and opens up the bag and a sleeping head pops out of it.

 

“Look at this catkin, isn’t it super rare?!?! It has this rare white hair! It was super naive and trusting hahaha! I bet you it is probably a beastkin royalty or something! You can probably easily sell it for 1 gold or more to a noble or something!”

 

I activate “[Appraise: Humanoid]”

 

* sigh *

 

“Mike, do you take me for a fool or something? How long do you think I have been in this business?”

 

Mike looks at me with a dumbfound face and asks

 

“What do you mean Mr. Gower?”

 

“First of all, beastking royalty is not white nor is it a catkin in the first place. Second of all, the catkin you brought is a measly level 4 which is below standard if I do say so myself. An average 12 year old should be at least level 5 if not 6. Third of all, while I have not seen a white haired Catkin before, I have seen other beastkin including Catkin with exotic colors. The exotic colors does not mean they are rare or unique in any way. Quite the opposite actually. Exotic colors are unnatural in beastkin who live and camouflage themselves in the forest. Having an exotic color is like asking to be hunted down. Whenever you see an exotic color on a beastkin, it generally means there is something seriously wrong with it. Considering this one is such low level and is so naive and stupid. I would guess retardation. And even if it was a unique beastkin, not only would I not get a gold for it, I would lose more money transporting it, there is no nobles here for hundreds of miles in this remote village. At best, I can give you 1 silver for it”

 

Finally the enthusiastic smirk disappears off Mike’s face.

 

“Come on Mr. Gower! I really need the money! Give me at least 5 silver for it. My wife told me to sell it no less than 5 silver...”

 

Again with the begging * sigh *

 

“If you don’t like it, you are free to sell it to another slave merchant...oh wait...there isn’t any in this town! Hohoho”

 

I always love pulling out my favorite catch phrase. This village has recently started growing rapidly and I am the first to capitalize it while locking out the competition.

 

Mike looks at me with a dejected face and says:

 

“You know you are going to go to hell for this! I am trying to feed a family here!”

 

To which I nonchalantly reply:

 

“I am just an honest hard working man doing his job. Either way you are interrupting my business so make up your mind 1 silver, take it or leave it.”

 

Mike begins to turn red from anger but calms himself down and gives in.

 

“Fine...1 silver it is”

 

I turn to Rick who has been sitting and reading by me this whole time and ask him to prepare the slave collar and the payment. To which he nods and goes to the back. After less than a minute he brings in the slave collar and the payment.

 

He goes over to the tied up sleeping catkin and attached the collar. He then takes off the command seal and pours a bit of mana to it. When he does that the catkin begins to shrivel up and releases an ear piercing scream.

 

“AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!”

 

The sudden scream shocks Mike, but to me and Rick it is an every day thing so we already had our earplugs on. The screaming and thrashing continued for about a minute and stopped with the catkin fainting again while foaming in the mouth and bleeding from her eyes.

 

I hate it when they do that… Cleaning that up is such a pain... * sigh *

 

“What the hell?!?! That shocked me” Mike exclaimed.

 

To which Rick replied:

 

“Yes, that is normal. The slave collar directly attacks the slave’s mind, the more they resist the more painful it is. That is necessary to insure full control. Personally if it were up to me I would take out their voice-box prior to placing the slave collar on bait. But despite it having no real use, customers would just claim it now is damaged goods and want less for it. So we have to put up with the annoyance. Since the collar has been placed, here is your 1 silver”

 

Mike receives his 1 silver and grits his teeth. He seem to have remembered his anger and kicks the catkin on the floor while muttering “Damn you for getting our hopes up! Must be nice doing what your told without having to worry about making end meet”

 

At that I exclaimed.

 

“Hey there! That slave is not your property anymore! If you damage my property you will have to pay for it!”

 

To which he jumps back in fright and quickly leaves the shop.

 

* sigh *

 

“Rick, take it to the back and place it with the others” I say.

 

“Yes, sir! I do wonder, if this slave is mentally retarded, why even buy it?” he questions.

 

“And that is why you will always be a greenhorn in this business. Sure if this was a dogkin, I would not buy it since dogkin’s primary use is as a tracker. A retarded dogkin is same as a dead dogkin. But for bait like a catkin, it is another story. The more simple minded they are the better bait they are.”

 

Receiving my explanation, Rick wipes the stains away and takes the catkin in for holding.

 

Today is such a slow day…

 

* sigh *

 

After about an hour passes I get ready to close down when suddenly I see a customer head for the door. But not just any customer. A business like smile appears on my face.

 

“Why if it isn’t my favorite customer Mr. Razer… Do you need to restock on bait again?” I ask.

 

“Yeah, the previous 2 hit the bucket a bit early. So I need a fresh batch. This time though I am hunting a [Hell Boar] so I don’t mind if they are the disposable kind as long as they serve their purpose” He responds.

 

“I see… Then I might just have the right thing for you. I recently got this 12 year old level 4 white catkin which I think would serve as perfect disposable bait” I suggest.

 

“You mean that retarded white catkin that has been hitting the rumor mill lately?” he asks.

 

“Yes, that one. But don’t worry despite being retarded it is more than capable of taking orders. If anything it would be easier to control” I assure.

 

“I see… despite it’s low level it is worth a shot as disposable bait. How much for it?” he inquires.

 

“Only 2 silver” I respond while robbing my hands and smiling.

 

“Hmmm...alright...I’ll take it. Anything else you have?” he confirms.

 

“Excellent choice! We also have a 14 year old level 7 rabbitkin with improved jump skill for only 3 silver which should prove useful” I add.

 

“Sounds good, I’ll take that as well” he exclaims.

 

He pays me 5 silver while Rick goes to the back and retrieves the slaves and the command seals. Mr. Razer takes the command seals and his’s dogkin slave picks up the slaves and then carries them out the door. With both of them gone I close up shop.

 

If only more customers were like Mr. Razer... * sigh *

 

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