Chapter 35 – Trade negotiations
On the topic of the division of our shares we weren’t able to come to a compromise…. Finally we decided to come back to it when we have the money at hand.
To try and sell the items, Luce and I decided to first visit the Broken Grimoire Company.
….the shopkeeper seemed pretty black-hearted, so I don’t think she would be buying our things for a good price, but since there aren’t that many shops that deal with Skill Books, we will most likely end up doing business here in the end.
It would be a problem if clumsily going around trying to sell a Skill Book in an illegal manner caused rumors to start.
“Hoh, so you came again. You even brought a lovely girl with you this time. Is she a teammate?”
The same as last time, the old lady with a tobacco pipe in her hand greeted me.
“….do you have that still?”
“How mistrustful. If you are talking about the Skill Book for [Smoldering Fang of Madness], then of course I have it. We place high value on trust, especially because of the type of business we do.”
….somehow, I don’t believe her the least bit.
I have a feeling that if someone tried to buy it for more than I promised, she would’ve sold it in a heartbeat.
The last time she did make a promise, but it’s not like I really trusted her to keep it.
However, I wanted to decrease the chance of the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] getting sold, if even by a single percent.
With how tightly regulated those Skill Books are in this world, if I miss this chance, then there is no telling how long I will have to wait for another opportunity to get it.
Honestly, if I had that much on me, I would buy it right away even for a 100 million gold.
“You said that you wanted a certain item, Elma-san. So, it was something from this shop?”
It seems things fell into place for Luce, so she clapped in understanding.
“She seems like an innocent girl. I hope you aren’t about to make this girl learn that Skill Tree?”
The shopkeeper’s lips curved up to a slight smile.
“….don’t even joke about it, who would do something distasteful like that. It’s for me.”
“Hmm, even then….that is not something a beginner adventurer should be looking for. It’s somewhat strange, that’s all.”
Seeing our back and forth, Luce tilted her head questioningly.
I understand what the shopkeeper was trying to say with that.
Ordinarily, the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] is a Skill Tree where the danger to the user is simply too great.
She must’ve thought that either I was veritably suicidal, or I just grabbed an unsuspecting newbie adventurer intending to use her as a disposable pawn.
“We are not here to buy something right now. We came here to get a few items appraised.”
“Hoh? I thought that someone seemingly sensible like you would not even consider doing business with us.”
The shopkeeper spoke frankly.
It seems she knew that I did not have the best impression of this place.
Luce looked at the shopkeeper with narrowed eyes, then she turned her gaze at me, looking a bit anxious.
I took out the items that dropped in the Angel’s Toybox one after the other to show her.
Two Tin Swords, then two Rana’s Radiant Ornate Swords.
With just this, the total Market Value nearly reached 40 million gold.
“Well, that’s a surprise. Two Rana’s Radiant Ornate Swords…. I thought you were a strangely confident brat, but I didn’t think you would be able to get something like this in such a short time. Heh, if I knew that beforehand, then I wouldn’t have been so frank with you. My loss.”
“I don’t want to go through all that annoying bargaining. If you give 30 million gold for all of that, then I don’t mind selling these to you. Any less than that and we will look for other places to sell. I didn’t expect that much to begin with, we’re mostly here for a frame of reference.”
“It would be hard to get 30 million in legal shops. If they don’t have enough in reserve then they won’t even be able to pay for them at once. I will buy all those at the same time, so you won’t have to worry about rumors that might incite jealousy. You shouldn’t worry about a small amount of money and risk yourselves needlessly with your current strength. 25 million gold.”
I even said that I don’t want to go through all that useless bargaining.
“Elma-san, isn’t there logic to what the shopkeeper-san says too? 25 million is still a lot of money…..”
“Don’t get caught up in her flow, Luce. If you show any weakness, she will take advantage of you.”
What the shopkeeper said was true.
30 million is a tad high of a price.
Even if I made the rounds as best as I could, I would at most get something like 28 million overall from other shops.
So to avoid unnecessary risks it would be a valid choice to sell everything here for 25 million.
However, I don’t think it would be wise to get swept up by this argument.
She looks like she would try to lower the price even further in the end.
Even if we were to finally accept it, I don’t want to show any weakness in the meantime.
“There is the money from the magic stones too. We should just keep the Rana’s Radiant Ornate Swords as hard assets and sell them when an opportunity presents itself. Only if we try to sell everything at once would we garner attention.”
I declared confidently.
“Then I can’t persuade you with that I guess. That’s too bad.”
The shopkeeper had a somewhat unpleasant smile on her face.
….it seems like she is just letting it slide, but with this we were able to keep up a strong front.
Although it seems this granny seems to be enjoying this haggling. What a wonderful personality.
Still, it’s clear now that the best we could get in this shop is 25 or 26 million at most.
I should be satisfied with getting that much.
“You still have something else, right? Since it seems you are serious about selling those items somewhere else.”
“….we have a Skill Book that dropped from a Dream Lord. We are thinking about possibly using it, but if we could get a good price for it, then we might sell it instead.”
While saying that I took out the [Intermediate Wind Magic] Skill Book.
I was bluffing when I said that we are thinking about using it, to pump up the price even a little bit.
It would be bad if she could use the argument that we won’t be able to sell it anywhere else anyway.
“Getting that much in such a short amount of time is really something…. You… or rather, you two might be called Heroes by the public sometime soon. I see, I would like it if you sold that one here.”
The shopkeeper smiled.
It seems she got really interested all of a sudden, but who knows what is this granny’s aim with that.
“A Market Value of 20 million gold…. That will be a somewhat risky business even for me. If you sold it to the Guild, then it would be around 7 million gold. You two seem capable enough, so with the future in mind, how about I give you a bonus. I will take it off your hand for 14 million gold.”
“You will just put this up for an exorbitant price too, right? It would not be hard to find someone interested in this [Intermediate Wind Magic]. You should be easily able to boost the price depending on who asks about it too. If you say you want to get along with us in the future, then shouldn’t we get about 22 million gold for it at least?”
“Heh….You seem to know the value of Skill Books pretty well at that age, even though you are just a brat. I guess this is the consequence of letting you see the Market Value last time. However, you two don’t have any intentions of using this one whatsoever, right? You shouldn’t try to pull the wool over my eyes like that.”
“That goes for you too, doesn’t it? If you want us to be useful as customers in the future, then you should show a little quid pro quo here.”
I can’t back down on this.
Due to the legal trade of Skill Books being banned, every single one of them is so rare that they might as well not exist.
If I’m not careful, then I will get suckered into a bad deal. I need to hold out on this.
“You really are perceptive, gutsy, and have a way with words for someone so young. Cheeky brat.”
The shopkeeper licked her lips.
This is less than ideal…. My plan was to bulldoze through the conversation and seal the deal as fast as possible, because otherwise I don’t have much of a chance.
As expected, with a Skill Book as the subject, that was unlikely to work.
“….umm, how much is the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] Skill Book that Elma-san wants to get?”
Luce timidly raised her hand.
The shopkeeper narrowed her eyes at Luce.
“Hey, little girl. This is the best part of the negotiation, why do you get in the way like this. The one this Heavy Knight brat wants is a rare Skill Book priced at 55 million gold.”
“F-fifty five million gold….. I expected something like this from that conversation, but that’s really expensive….”
It looks like Luce’s face stiffened from the surprise.
“….as for its Market Value, it’s 30 million gold. She is wringing every gold she can out of it.”
After my addendum, Luce nodded in a serious manner, then started thinking while holding a finger against her lips.
Soon after her expression brightened up and she tried another angle of attack.
“Umm! Shopkeeper-san, I just thought of this, but how about we trade the [Intermediate Wind Magic] Skill Book and all the items you have there for the [Smoldering Fang of Madness]?”
“Hnn, I was just wondering what you would come up with. That’s not even remotely equal. Don’t just try to butt in on impulse….”
After saying that, the shopkeeper’s expression turned into a frown.
“…mm, no, you bring up an important point. If you see it as being able to get rid of the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] which is not too in demand, and getting a bunch of easy to sell items in turn, then it’s quite a good deal.”
Luce’s suggestion is indeed good for us too in terms of gold value.
The items we put up so far have a total Market Value of 40 million…. but if we were to sell them individually, then the most we can expect is 28 million gold.
But only if everything goes well.
Also, even if we take the higher estimate, the most we would get for the [Intermediate Wind Magic] Skill Book is 20 million gold.
Together that would make 48 million… As for the [Smoldering Fang of Madness], she might even try to haggle up its original 55 million gold price after all this.
It would be best to simply trade in everything at once.
We could get the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] without touching the money we got for the magic stones and for defeating the Embryo.
“I wanted to play for a bit more, but when you suggest a good deal like that, as a merchant I can’t say no to it. I can agree to that deal.”
“Ah, w-wait just a moment!”
There is a large problem with that deal.
These items are a significant part of our total income.
“Luce, I won’t be able to give you your share of the money like this.”
“….I can’t even properly thank Elma-san for helping me by inviting me to the party and also for ultimately helping me raise my levels, so something like this is not a big deal.”
“N-no, this is not a sum that can just be hand-waved away by calling it gratitude….”
“It’s normal to invest in a teammate’s equipment, right? We can call this an operating expense. We each need to upgrade our gear, so that division of shares would be inefficient in the short run, right? We should just pool our money together and divide it as needed for now. That way Elma-san would get a lot stronger right away, which would let us be more active and earn more, right? Then there is no problem at all!”
….certainly, I would like to get the [Smoldering Fang of Madness] as soon as possible.
I would like to get it indeed, but spending 55 million gold for my sake feels disproportionately in my favor.
“Hey…. Luce. This time things went well, but that doesn’t mean it will be the same in the future. What would you do if we soon had to disband the party due to some unavoidable circumstance?”
“….Elma-san, do you intend to throw me away and join another party? It’s starting to sound like you are trying to avoid future troubles….”
Luce started glaring up at me and tightly grasped onto my arm.
She radiated a ‘I’m not letting you get away’ aura.
“N-no, that’s not it….just in the worst case….”
Luce’s expression cleared up in an instant.
“Then there is no problem at all! Right? Just think of it as a thank you present from me. If you still aren’t satisfied with that, then you just need to keep working hard and pay me back later!”
“Well, that might be fine, but….no, but….”
“Well then, shopkeeper-san, let’s exchange those right away! Before Elma-san tries to bring up something unnecessary again!”
“You handled that well, little girl. Hold onto him well, so he won’t get away.”
Luce and a shopkeeper high-fived to congratulate each other on a job well done.
Why are those two getting along so well all of a sudden….?
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