Tensei Kizoku wa Taishi wo Idaku! - Chapter 30: Five-year-old, negotiations with elves, Tilly Hill.
Chapter 30:Five-year-old, negotiations with elves, Tilly Hill.
Isaac and his companions were waiting in a tent in the plains of the forest east of Tilly Hill.
Morgan decided to leave Randolph back and meet with Isaac and Baron Algren.
Yesterday he had the hunters enter the woods to send the message “meet tomorrow.”
The time was to be around noon.
He had everyone prepare for outdoor cooking so that he could eat lightly, just in case, but the elves might not take their invitation for obvious reasons.
However, they decided to prepare, as their impressions would change depending on if their display was “prepared and wasted” or “not prepared because it would be wasted.”
(TL/N: The elves might think that the humans didn’t prepare anything cuz they thought the elves weren’t worth it.)
Because they were in a position to welcome them this time, they decided to prepare.
Of course, they also had souvenirs.
“Is that really good?”
Morgan looked at the wagon carrying the souvenirs.
The contents are mainly salt, with a little pepper and sugar.
He didn’t actually mind the souvenirs.
However, Isaac worried him a bit.
“Yes. I heard that they were originally doing business with the dwarfs in the south, but as that area was really far away, they started trading it with the local humans. I think that such a practical thing would be more appreciated. If I were an elf, I wouldn’t just like to receive gemstones or other things like that.”
“If you say so, then …”
For Morgan, because of the rock salt mine located in the south of Wellrod territory, it was like, “you can get as much salt as you want”.
It was difficult for him to understand the hardships of elves whose area was not in contact with a rock salt mine.
It was well understood that giving an expensive item would be troublesome.
Because they were a Marquis family, there were many high-class items being delivered to them.
However, something that was uselessly expensive was always a burden.
It was difficult to think about what to return and how to return something that matched the gift.
That might’ve been the same for the elves.
Morgan himself may have been so excited about the situation of ‘interacting with elves’ that he couldn’t even think of such a basic thing.
“I’m really sorry. I didn’t realize we were bartering with an elf.”
It was Baron Algren, who was entrusted with this place.
About 100 years ago, those who entered the forest had met the elf before he was even born.
He was very ashamed of what he had never noticed.
“No, You can’t notice it unless it’s reported. Baron Algren isn’t the one to blame.”
Morgan told him.
None reported their sightings in detail, not only the hunters and lumberjacks, but also those who entered the forest to pick up firewood and pick edible wild plants.
There were reports that they ‘met an elf in the woods’, but that was it.
A deal was never mentioned.
As long as you know that elves live in the eastern forest, encountering them was no problem, you didn’t have to take care of them.
Even if reported, you couldn’t just punish the whole town for some individual trades.
This was a problem related to information transmission.
‘――You can tell the lord, but if they don’t believe it, you will be punished.’
‘――If you exchange things, then you don’t have to bother telling them.’
Because the whole town’s judgement was that, none of the important information made its way to the Baron.
However, it was reckless to order “Tell me everything that happened, I will not punish you.”
Unrealistic orders like that would start rumours that might travel far beyond the territory.
Even if information was acquired, there was no guarantee that it’d get to the Baron.
It was necessary to introduce better ways to acquire information and transmit them to the head.
“What Baron Algren didn’t know is not much of a problem. The elves didn’t make much of a fuss, so everything’s ok.”
If Baron Algren was punished for the situation, then he wouldn’t be able to recover.
So, Isaac followed.
(Baron Algren seemed to be on my side)
Isaac wasn’t fully sure of it. He didn’t know that Algren was already on his side.
He wouldn’t know that without hearing it from him clearly, as until recently he knew that Algren was on Nathan’s side.
He somehow guessed at the atmosphere, but Isaac wasn’t so sure.
One day he’d learn about the subtleties of human interactions.
“They are here! They number 20!”
A person who was watching the forest reported to Morgan.
Hearing the number of elves, he was a little nervous.
“Twenty people? That’s quite a delicate number… What kind of armaments are there?”
“The only prominent weapons are bows and arrows and knives. Others have fur and bags.”
Morgan put his hand on his chin and pondered a little.
“I’m wary of that, but it seems that they are focusing on trading. I’ll take 20 escorts, the rest will stay back.”
Even within his own territory, if Morgan moved, he’d have about 300 escorts.
Although the opponents were elves who excelled in solo combat, if Morgan took 300 escorts then it might send the wrong message.
Besides, negotiations aren’t just based on words.
If they thought, “This guy is scared of us”, that alone would be a disadvantage when deciding the conditions.
‘Although in your heart you may feel afraid, you must stay confident on the outside’.
To show that, Morgan let go of his soldiers.
Isaac was surprised to see the elves’ outfits.
This is because some of the old men, who are probably the representatives, wore haori hakama.
(TL/N: A badass kind of robe, search it up.)
(It’s definitely hard to walk in the forest with that…)
The people who accompanied them as escorts were wearing clothes like Samue, and they had leather breastplates on them.
It was seemingly so that the strings did not touch their chest when shooting the bow.
(TL/N: Basically an archery breast pad or something like that.)
Bridget was also there with the escort.
“Nice to meet you, I’m Isaac, son of Randolph, the Marquis of Wellrod. This is my grandfather, Morgan, and this is Baron Kenneth Algren, the one governing the city.”
Isaac was the first to speak.
Followed by greetings from the other two.
Isaac named himself first to show “who is in charge of this place”.
Everything was to make the image of a “responsible person”.
— Isaac was to lead the negotiations with the elves.
Isaac had the role of “managing negotiations with the elves”, it was mainly to protect himself.
“Resumed contact with the elves”, that was enough to solidify Morgan’s position as the foreign minister.
“I’m Alois, the mayor of Morane. The village from where Bridget is.”
A middle-aged elf who looked like a human being of around fifty years old answered.
Certainly, his clothes were a fine class among the elves.
For Isaac, who had a lot of suits, his haori hakama was a little enviable.
Alois then began to introduce an elf of similar age next to him.
“This is Elder Mathias. He was interested in this story.”
Mathias, who was called an elder, just nodded.
His face was engraved with deep wrinkles, and looked like a human being over 70 years old.
According to the book Isaac read, elves had ten times the lifespan of human beings.
Mathias seemed to have lived before the birth of the Reed Kingdom.
So it was obvious why he’d be an elder.
“We were waiting for you. Please go to your seat.”
Isaac recommended for them to take a seat.
He also gazed at his escorts.
They took down the chairs from the wagon and placed them nearby and lined up according to the number of people the elves and they had.
However, only half of them took a seat.
――Trusting an individual and a group are two different things.
Probably, even the hunters had built trust due many years of trades, the same couldn’t be said about the human representatives.
It was not something special.
It is a natural course of action.
“Thank you for visiting us today. We are interacting with the elves for the first time in 200 years. It may be unpleasant due to the difference in our manners. In that case, please forgive me. Thank you.”
First of all, Isaac put up a precautionary line if there was any difference in etiquette.
It is quite possible that different cultures had different manners.
These precautionary lines were for both of them.
If told in advance, the elf side wouldn’t have to get angry if someone acted a bit rude.
They would be judged as an “unstudied guy” because of the historical material available about the elves and their culture, but for now, Isaac was thought of as a “cautious kid”.
“I set up this meeting because I met Bridget in the forest that day.”
Isaac glances at Bridget sitting behind Alois.
“I didn’t feel any grudge against humans from Ms. Bridget. If you don’t want to fight, then I think it would be more fun to live in harmony with everyone.”
And then Isaac flashed a bright smile.
In reply, the expressions on the elves’ side, who were a bit tense, softened up.
Although the races were different, the smile of the child had the effect of softening the atmosphere.
The elves had the impression that he was a clever child, so they were wary that he might be planning something.
However, they relaxed their guard a bit due to it being a “childish opportunity” to get along.
Next, Morgan opened his mouth.
“In the past there had been a tragedy between humans and elves. I am not in a position to represent humans, but I would like to apologize.”
As Morgan bowed, Isaac and Kenneth bowed as well.
Mathias stopped them immediately.
“You don’t have to bow your head. It’s the sin of your ancestors that started the fight. I’m not telling their descendants to atone for their sin.”
“As Mathias says, that’s why I started contacting the humans when the generation was replaced completely.”
Alois followed Mathias’s words.
“If only that were the case for everyone.”
Morgan sighed in his heart.
And he tightened his resolve.
Although the grudge disappeared, the stigma against elves was still there.
From now on, depending on their actions, what would happen to their future relationships would change significantly.
He couldn’t just go around saying anything he wanted.
“But Brigitte is too careless, even though she was born after the war. It’s not good for a young girl to approach a group of men just to borrow fire, regardless of whether they are elves or humans.”
Alois mourned Bridget’s carelessness with a sigh.
First of all, he’d try to make a calm atmosphere with small talk.
Morgan also decided to take this opportunity.
“It’s the same with Isaac. There are poisonous creatures and plants in the forest. It was a careless act as an heir of the Marquis family.”
“It’s hard dealing with young people.”
They talked to each other about their problems with managing the younger generation.
After some back and forth, Morgan found a chance and went a little deeper.
“By the way, I heard from Isaac that you require salt. Moreover, we were preparing a gift to commemorate the meeting. Can you receive salt, pepper and sugar?”
Morgan said that while handing over the inventory of items.
Alois was very pleased to see that inventory.
“Thank you for the salt. Even young people have a hard time walking in the woods with fur for more than 10 days and bringing back the salt from the dwarves. What would you like to get in return?”
When Alois gave instructions to those behind him, fur and fruits were offered.
“Thank you. This meeting is enough for now, but I’m thinking of starting formal trading in the future. If you want to trade, Is it okay for you to buy and sell fur etc.? ”
The elves lived in the forest.
He thought it was better to trade with things that they procured in the forest easily.
Elves were better at hunting than humans, and the amount of goods like furs would increase.
However, the faces of the elves were tense.
“No, forest animals are hunted for food. We don’t want to hunt more than necessary.”
Mathias denied the deal.
“That’s right. Until now, I’ve only bartered with the surplus. I’m just glad that we’d be able to trade publicly in that same way.”
This is a matter of life for an elf.
It was not possible to force them to hunt.
(It is just to improve our relationship…)
Morgan was disappointed, though he didn’t show it on his face.
Resuming interaction with the elves was a good thing, but then it wouldn’t act as much of a shield for Isaac.
Without continuous transactions, Isaac’s desire won’t be met.
It was quite difficult to get the shield of concession.
Morgan glanced at Isaac.
Isaac was just looking at Morgan.
Their eyes collided.
(It can not be helped)
Morgan decided to adopt the other method.
“Then, why don’t you work? Then you can buy as many things as you like without hunting for prey.”
Both Alois and Mathias had a blatantly disgusted face.
To them the idea was perplexing.
–The man is driven into war and the woman sells her body.
–Preying on the elves by pretending to be in debt.
They were reluctant to work for humans because he knew the work of humans in the past.
“This child came up with the idea, but I would like you to use the magic of elves to create roads and embankments. Of course, if your people want to do it.”
――Make roads with magic.
It clicked something inside them.
Mathias opened his mouth.
“… It’s strange. The only things that humans make are castles and fortresses. They’re all about war.”
He was looking at the planes behind them.
Perhaps he remembered a time when he once interacted with humans hundreds of years ago.
“It’s not a bad thing if you think of yourself as a migrant worker. If you can shop freely in that city, you can easily get hot pots and kitchen knives. It would be inconvenient if there were no stores within walking distance. ”
Mathias seemed to be positive about the idea.
He once knew of convenient ways to shop, so he hadn’t forgotten the benefits of making money.
“Sure, there is an Iron mine in Tilly Hill, and blacksmiths make iron products, but you can’t compare them to dwarven ones.”
Kenneth said with a slightly embarrassed face.
Although it was funny, it was 100% true.
Because you can’t beat the dwarves in making things, put up a precautionary line so that you won’t be disappointed by the elves who were doing business with the dwarves.
“But I’m reluctant to work in human territory… it’ll be better in the winter, so we don’t have to hurry right now right?”
Alois, the village mayor, argued cautiously.
He also wanted a life of convenience.
However, it was scary to decide on just momentum alone.
Isaac supported his idea.
“I think so too. Isn’t it better to ask if there are people who are willing to go to work during the winter? We will be in the Royal Capital in the winter, so it’s not anything to hurry about. I think it’s better to have time to think about it.”
Morgan glanced at Isaac with the words, “Is that good?”, But Isaac nodded without any hesitation.
“If you say so, then it’s okay.”
Alois was relieved because he was not asked to make a hasty decision.
He wanted to be cautious given his position as the village mayor, regardless of his own ideas.
“That’s right. I saw Bridget’s magic in the forest, but can you show it to my grandfathers?
First of all, witnessing the asset firsthand.
He was confident that Morgan would not be reluctant and would actively cooperate if he knew exactly what they were talking about.
Isaac asked the elves to use magic.
“Then I’ll do it.”
Bridget raised her hand.
She was the youngest member of the group, and her magical power was also low for her age.
But she was enough for a demonstration.
Perhaps Alois thought so, so he gave his permission.
“A flat road with a width of 10m, a depth of 1m, and a distance of about 100m. Please.”
Isaac told her the measurements.
He wanted a width of about 15m on a four-lane road + sidewalk, considering the time when cars became a thing, but he adjusted it to the general standard of 10m in this country.
He also ordered the depth because he was afraid that it would crack if the pavement was too thin.
[On Kakabi Sanma Ai Sowaka]
When Bridget cast magic, the grass on the plain crawled out of the ground and escaped from the magical range.
(I feel sick)
The appearance of grass walking with its roots moving and rustling like insects made Isaac feel sick.
However, the main objective, the road, was wonderful.
A 100m x 10m paved road was completed in a heartbeat.
The voices of admiration of those who were watching it sprang up.
With just a few words, such a road was completed.
They couldn’t imagine how much effort the humans would need to put in order to get the same result.
Bridget was proud to see their surprised appearance.
Morgan stood up and confirmed the paved road that suddenly appeared on the plain.
A flat road comparable to the cobblestone road of the royal capital.
Moreover, it seemed to be quite sturdy.
“Sure, I’d like to go with the job. I can see how Isaac was trying to improve the road.”
Looking at the actual product, his thoughts changed.
He decided that it is much better to ask the elves for these things instead of making the commoners do these things.
“It’s wonderful, isn’t it?”
Isaac smiled at Morgan and turned to Alois.
“It’s a beautiful and sturdy road. Even the embankments can be strengthened like this, I just want you to cast some magic.”
It was not bad to be able to make money with this only.
“What is the reward?”
“I haven’t thought about it yet, but I’m thinking about 20,000 leads a day per person, considering that it can be completed in an instant and that a good road can be made. In terms of salt, it’s about 40 kg.”
It was cheap, considering the construction cost of a 100m road.
However, magic could end everything in an instant.
Considering that, it was a bit higher, but it was still quite low.
He felt like he was deceiving the elves who didn’t know the market price.
“40 kg of salt… Let me think for a bit.”
However, it seemed that it was enough for the elves in question.
Raising wages was okay after successful negotiations.
“I’ll be back here next spring. Please discuss it with everyone in the meantime.”
Yes, Isaac would come to this city again.
The bidding was not over yet.
Isaac thought it would be good if everything was done along with the bidding.
“Let’s do that!”
He said he wanted to think, but Alois was shaking.
It looked good to expect.
“Have you finished your lunch? If you haven’t done so already, then have lunch with us, it’s not much, but we have prepared some nice things.”
“I’m sorry. Let’s go with that.”
Mathias replied to Isaac’s invitation.
Interaction between humans and elves after a long period of isolation.
He thought that a light dinner would be good.
After this, they had a chat while eating, and were finally able to conclude the meeting without any conflict.
Isaac was satisfied with the result.
(A lot of salt and pepper was a good choice, I’ll keep that in mind for further negotiations.)
Isaac was convinced that the elves would accept their work as migrant workers in the spring.
When people became rich, they couldn’t stand it if they became poor.
He was sure that the elves would be happy to see the salt piled up, but they should feel frustrated when they see the salt decreasing over time.
――I want more stockpiles.
Then it becomes something other than salt, and as it would get fulfilled by money, they’d eventually become unable to break the ties with Isaac.
And thus, in general, they’d try to protect Isaac.
After that, if he implicitly taught the thoughts of the elves to other aristocrats and merchants, Isaac would be protected.
Isaac could see his path to that point.
[PR joke: Capitalism in another world! Coming to your nearest Tensei Kizoku!]