Non-commentated version of this chapter here for those that don’t want to interrupt their reading of the story with my rambling.
Chapter 20 – Headquarters acquired!
It was the next morning after making Yuuri and the others my Servants.
“Ooh, welcome, Prince Alec!”
As we arrived at the harbor of Lobrion, a cheerful looking old man── Count Lobria approached me.
Count Lobria kneeled down and bowed deeply in front of me.
“To think that Your Highness would see through the enemy’s plot! I’m in awe of your keen insight!”
“I’m happy to be of assistance. By the way, what happened to the demons?”
“We haven’t managed to locate them just yet, but they must’ve been washed ashore somewhere by now.”
“I see. So I let them get away.”
“Please, don’t mind minor things like that! After all Your Highness has already saved Lobrion.”
I already saved it, huh.
Even without the defensive chains, it seems he’s confident that they could weather an assault if they are not caught off guard with it.
There are indeed a lot of soldiers standing by in the harbor.
Even in the bay, a row of anchored military ships serve as a replacement for the defensive chains.
“No movements from the Monster Kingdom?”
“Nothing. Even if the chains are broken, without the element of surprise on their side the enemy won’t force a confrontation. Though that means we need to keep the soldiers mobilized in the meantime….”
Not all soldiers here are part of the standing army.
Many of them are farmers and the like who work nearby.
It takes a lot of money to keep such a number on standby.
“We need to repair those chains as soon as possible, but….even Count Ios to the north of here would have trouble with chains that large.”
“You would need to either get it from the capital, or find some craftsmen or demons that can make it for you.”
“Indeed…. However, we can’t trust demons anymore. Even if it takes more time that way, it will have to be done by human hands.”
(TN: Well, it was pre-tty stupid to leave the whole thing to demons with zero supervision from others to begin with. They are still terrible people for oppressing demons like that, but they could be at least not idiots in their terribleness.)
Count Lobria couldn’t hide his irritation at that.
It seems he’s prepared to have to pay a lot of money for it.
“I see….Count Lobria, to tell you the truth, I have around thirty craftsmen in my employ in preparation for reclaiming Tialus.”
(TN: Nevermind the suspiciously same sized group of people with suspiciously similar expertise to the one that just disappeared into thin air in suspicious circumstances. There is nothing suspicious here at all. These are not the droids you are looking for. This is a world of magic, some kind of magical disguise should be on the table here.)
“T-to reclaim that territory….? Oh, sorry. Craftsmen you say?”
“Indeed. In fact, they are already close by, coming from the north of Lobrion. They are all very skilled, so much so that they will be able to make those huge chains as well.”
When I said that, Count Lobrion’s expression changed all of a sudden.
(TN: Hohoh, will he be able to realize that this sounds helluva convenient and ridiculously suspicious coming from a single 7 years old shunned prince with only a single maid accompanying him? The one who discovered this whole thing out of frickin’ nowhere?)
“Really!? C-could you have them create those chains in that case!? I will pay whatever is necessary for it!”
(TN: Of course not. He’s braindead like basically everyone in this world.)
Count Lobrion grasped my hand with both of his.
As expected, he jumped at the chance….. Very convenient for me.
(TN: How unexpectedly oh so convenient. Shocking. Truly.)
“In that case, as long as you provide the materials, we will do it for a reasonable fee. However, I would like you to prepare a house and workshop for them to stay at for a while. Also, I would like food to be provided and…..permission to conduct business as well.”
(TN: Also the soul of your first born.)
“If that’s all you require, then I will make sure to have them prepared at once! Let me provide you with an excellent place on the main street as a token of my gratitude! No need to return it either! Hey! You there! Prepare the place immediately!”
Count Lobria told one of his aides standing nearby.
“Thank you, Count Lobria. Then I will call my people here right away.”
“We are very thankful as well! Thank goodness, Lobrion will be safe now!”
Count Lobrion looked relieved from the bottom of his heart. He even started laughing out loud.
Rather than the city being safe, he must be happy about being able to curb his expenses this way….
The craftsmen I was talking about were Yuuri and the others of course. Their appearance changed into that of a human, so they won’t be found out either.
(TN: Really? No disguise magic or some kind of shapeshifting magic exists at all? Illusion magic?)
Anyhow, we gained a shop-slash-residence on the main road, along with the land it’s built on as well.
I called Yuuri and the others to come to that house.
It was a four story tall residential building with a courtyard.
The first and second floor was perfect for a shop and workshop, while the courtyard would be best for blacksmithing. The upper floors will be the residential floors.
(TN: I imagine how inordinately happy the neighbors will be to have a smithy smack dab in the middle of the main road.)
“Good good, it seems they already brought in the furniture and the smithing tools.”
(TN: Was it yet again a highly convenient empty four story tall building in the busiest part of town, or they just kicked out some unfortunate people instead?)
“A-amazing….an impressive place like this….”
A girl with bluish black hair── Yuuri spoke while looking over the workshop.
The other demons…..let’s call them the blue hair group, were amazed by the beds and bath. They must’ve slept in a seriously rough place until now.
“It would be best if all of you live here together for a while. I made sure that you are provided food every day as well. I also got you permission to open a shop downstairs.”
Yuuri deeply bowed towards me.
“You saved our lives and even gave us a place to live…..Alec-sama, thank you, truly.”
(TN: Let’s just forget about the fact that they nearly caused the brutal death or enslavement of every single man, woman, and child in the city for an offer that they didn’t even really think the other party would keep in the end. What lovely people, even if they were mistreated until now.)
“Just think of this as the reward for your hard work until now….. However, the chains you will make for Count Lobria should be done properly.”
“Of course! We would never betray you, Alec-sama.”
“I will trust those words.”
Yuuri nodded vigorously to my reply.
“But, Yuuri. I want to ask something else from you.”
“Please, ask me anything you wish.”
“You don’t have to if you don’t want to, but……I would like you to come with us to Tialus.”
“Me? Of course, if you’ll have me, then I will gladly accompany you!”
(TN: Need to increase that new harem member/chapter ratio.)
“Thank you. I wanted to bring someone that’s knowledgeable about ores and minerals.”
I don’t intend her to be a hostage; I just wanted a way to check if there are any valuable deposits in Tialus.
However, we can’t go gallivanting around Tialus with thirty people in tow.
First I want to explore Tialus with a small group and check if there are any natural resources or safe areas within the territory.
“If that’s the case, then there is even more reason to leave it to me! I’ve spent three years working in a mine in the past. I would call myself fairly well-versed in the subject!”
Yuuri answered with total confidence.
“I see. That’s reassuring. Then work with Elysia to prepare equipment for yourself. Elysia, I’m counting on you……Elysia?”
When I turned to check, I saw Elysia with a disappointed expression on her face.
“Eh, ah, yes. Indeed, I don’t know anything about minerals…..so our two-person trip ends now!”
Elysia sounded disappointed for some reason.
(TN: How lovely. A girl of 15 basically pining over a 7 year old.)
There must be something bothering her, but…..
I turned towards Yuuri, but she just tilted her head in confusion.
In any case, we were able to get a headquarters in Lobria.
(TN: Lobria, as in the territory and not the Count.)
The blue hair group’s appearance has turned to that of a human’s, but their skills with blacksmithing have not deteriorated. Rather, they were happy that they could work on more delicate things now.
And just like Elysia, their strength doesn’t seem to have decreased at all.
Even children that look to be the same age as me can still lift a barrel with one hand…..
It would be kind of suspicious of course if they were seen doing something like that by humans, so I told them to be careful and avoid that.
I spent some time watching them work, but they were able to easily make even those giant chains. They were also able to make good quality weapons and armor, so those will be sold in the first floor shop.
It looks like this might bring in a good profit at this rate….
The next day I set out for Tialus.
(TN: Notice the ‘I’ in that sentence. The protagonist tends to use ‘I’ even when he’s doing something not alone, as if the girls are basically decoration.)