Chapter 58 – Village trends
66 0 1
X
Reading Options
Font Size
A- 15px A+
Width
Reset
X
Table of Contents
Loading... please wait.

Hey guys,

If you like the novel, check my Patreon (Up to 49 chapters in advance)...

Enjoy the chapter!

Year 2, Fall, First Month, First Week.

 

Keller couldn’t stop thinking of what Lew said, he could only guess that the Fighter had seen things the villagers keep hidden, which convinced him. Even though Keller was investing in the village, he took its future destruction as a foregone conclusion. His presence and support aimed mostly to build a bridge strong enough to save some Alchemy crafters before the village was destroyed. However, Lew’s conviction pointed to another possibility. From a business perspective, he would prefer to have the crafters under him, which meant more profits, but it also brought risks. Such a powerful craft would attract attention, even the Democracy wouldn’t be able to watch quietly. So, it wasn’t without benefits if they could stand on their own and protect themselves. Now, how Lew expected them to do it, was a true mystery.

“In consideration of your effort, we decided to allow the trade of the enhanced weapons… However, we would like for you to follow some restrictions. First, you wouldn’t sell them to Kingdom or anyone related to them, in other words, we don’t want them to get the weapons. Second, you would keep our identity a secret. Finally, you would have to meet our requests by the end of fall…”

Keller was pleased with this decision, fortunately, the villagers choose to give him some leeway. However, something on Omero’s conditions caught his attention, the timeframe for meeting the requests was very stressed, like it mattered more than the request itself. When he got the letter, he thought the villagers just wanted the resources before winter, but now he could see that was something more to it. Another thing also added to his suspicions, why did they ask for five pulling beasts?

“I agree with the conditions, I’m just curious about the importance of the deadline, why do need everything before winter?”

Omero looked at the Council members, checking their agreement. Earlier, they decided to trust Keller with some unspecific information about their escape.

“Because… We’ll be leaving before winter…”

“What? To where?”

“I can’t reveal the location…”

“But how can we keep doing business if I don’t know how to locate you?”

“That’s fair… We can agree on a meeting location anywhere near the Path of the second section…”

“That’s… A little uncertain, Omero, what are you planning? Are you trying to leave the Kingdom? If you leave the village, it wouldn’t take long for them to find you…”

Keller looked around, expecting to see confused and scared expressions, but the villagers looked calm and confident. Now he was sure that they had hidden tools, probably something that could give them the confidence to survive. He could only back down and wait to offer his help when they needed it.

“If you say so… So, moving back to the deal. Taking out the rare resources, we’re left with the LQ fire crystals, the carts, the fabric and the other common resources… Going with the market prices, it would be 43 golds, plus the 33 credit from last time, which would be 76 gold coins in total… This time around, I would want fewer but better enhancements… The regular enhancements on ten swords, spears and daggers, the rest I would like to put on armor and boots, enhanced to be lighter and tougher…”

With Omero’s permission, Reiner stepped forward to decided on the prices and quantity of the enhancements. After training a lot to make the math and conversions on the spot, she would like to put it to good use.

“You want 30 weapons’ enhancements, for 40 silvers each, which makes 12 golds… We could make the lightening enhancement for four golds for each armor and pair of boots… That would give you eight armors and eight pairs of boots…”

The enhancements would cost a lot less than Keller anticipated, so he didn’t think twice and answered:

“Deal!”

***

“Congratulations, you scored 80 percent!”

The shy teen looked at her, still uncertain of his choices.

“Hmm… Thank you… Mam, could I try the disciple test?”

“Of course.”

Reiner called over a helper and asked him to take the student to the right line. She sighed at how many students were willing to try the disciple’s test, they wouldn’t be able to finish the Alchemy tests before evening came. In the beginning, when the first ten students decided to try the test, she was thrilled, after all, there was a good chance of the department gaining more disciples. However, soon the line for the test grew, around half of the students that passed the resources’ test decide to try advancing. Reiner felt conflicted, if a large number of students advanced, the village would be able to develop faster, but it would be difficult to manage the workload with only the remaining students.

Although many would look down on the work of the students, Reiner knew they were an essential part of the department. Keeping track of resources, processing materials, arranging the re-drawing schedules and maintaining the organization of the department weren’t easy tasks. With nearly a thousand enhancements and magic tools around the village, the daily workload was massive. For example, yesterday one m-hoe* and 12 enhanced weapons suffered some kind of damage and had to be repaired. Besides the workload, the students still had to reserve time to learn more about Alchemy and how to read.

To put even more pressure on their shoulders, Reiner decided that all villagers in the Alchemy Department should be able to read and write basic words. Once the department started dealing with more resources they would have to make records of everything, so she needed to prepare as fast as possible.

***

The team left the riverbank and headed north, towards the newly built camp. Inside the team’s formation, four carriers held tightly two LCs packed with beasts, their hunt had been bountiful. Fortunately, the Lightness Rune under the tool lowered the weight over the wooden boards. But even with the weight reduction, they still sweat, the sun was strong and their thick coats only made things worse.

After creating the magic re-drawer, the Alchemy Department adopted a more aggressive approach with the use of enhancements in the village. To prevent deaths, the hunting teams were the first to experience this surge of enhancements and tools. Since then, Karl had drawn the Toughness Rune in the coats for more than half of the team members and he was working tirelessly to finish the rest before the week ended. Even with the summer heat, the coats had become standard equipment for the hunters, the last incident reminded them how fragile the villagers could be.

Fortunately, the numbers of fur beasts hunted since the beginning of the year already surpassed the teams' numbers and the Craft Department had started working on them as they become available. Since the coats only had a simple design, crafting them wasn’t too difficult. With the needles and thread brought by Keller, one villager would take one to two weeks to finish one coat. The coat only covered their upper body, but its extra protection could be the difference between life and death.

The use of coats was mandatory and aimed for the protection of the hunters, but it soon became a trend. Even with the plain designs, the natural colors and beautiful patterns of the pelts started to capture the attention of other villagers. Once there were enough coats for all members, Katlyn decided to let them keep it as a private possession. In no time, the coats became a symbol to identify the hunters. The team members would proudly wear their coats even when they weren’t hunting.

Seeing the situation unfolding, Katlyn decided to take a page out of Karl's book and establish a competition system between the hunters. Each leader would rank the members of their team according to their performance. The better ranked would be able to use the more beautiful and exquisite coats as a show of their accomplishments. However, to keep them motivated, the ranking would be repeated every two weeks, when the coats would be exchanged again. Surprisingly, the coats and ranking became a hot topic among the villagers.

The alchemy disciples also decided to join the fray and started to hang the wooden symbol that marked their position around their waist. However, they quickly learned that it didn’t cause as much impact because their positions didn’t change regularly like the hunters’. After getting some requests, Reiner decided to create standards to evaluate the disciples biweekly. Each disciple would be ranked according to the number of Arrays they drew and their creativity (insightful ideas). She asked Alfeur to craft some new wooden symbols, which would be exchanged by the disciples.

During the first month of fall, the villagers' attention became focused on the performance of the hunters and alchemists. Even the elders, would join discussions and bet on the success of their chosen villagers, it was a welcomed change of mood from the tension brought by their imminent escape.

Quickly, another month passed and it was time to put the plan in motion.

 

Council Report

Keller’s deal

Material

Quality

Price

Quantity

Total

Energy crystal

HQ

100 g

2

-

Energy crystal

MQ

1 g

10

10 g

Fire crystal

LQ

10 s

50

5 g

Bubble crystal

MQ

50 g

2

-

Life crystal

LQ

1 g

8

8 g

Blood (l)

MQ

30 s

20

6 g

Pulling beast

LT

30 g

5

-

Carts

LQ

2 g

5

10 g

Fabric (m)

LQ

1 s

300

3 g

Other resources

-

-

-

1 g

Total

43 g

 

Disciples progression

Disciple Progress

Task

Specific

Direct disciples

Level 2 disciples

Level 3 disciples

Students

3 (+1)

12 (+6)

36 (+25)

88

Draw Rune

Sharpness

-

-

-

-

Toughness

-

-

-

-

Lightness

-

-

-

-

Stimulus

-

-

-

-

Focus

-

-

-

-

Manifestation

-

-

-

-

Draw Array

Execution

3

12

36

-

Extraction

3

12

30

-

Absorption

3

12

25

-

Activation

3

12

22

-

Direction

3

10

2

-

Affinity Extraction

3

3

-

-

Manipulation

2

-

-

-

Signature Extraction

2

-

-

-

Addition

2

 

 

 

 

1