427-Episode 417 Crystal Seeds

 Allen went with Peromus to the Imperial City of Atlanta.
 They were looking for what they were looking for.

"There are a lot of people around here too.

 Peromus spoke to Allen as they avoided the oncoming crowd.

"Yeah, it's pretty festive."

I heard the civil war wasn't too bad.

 The Proustian Empire is in the midst of a successful civil war led by Ignomus.
 I heard that the civil war was originally confined to the palace and was not that big.
The streets of the imperial capital are bustling with activity without any sense of civil war.

 I guess the upcoming diva contest is an important festival for the people of the Proustian Empire.
 In the city center of the Imperial Capital of Atlanta, many fishermen are gathering from all over the Empire.

(The flower pillars are getting bigger again.)

 In the center of the crystal flower, whose petals are more than 100 kilometers long, a pistil-like column of flowers continues to grow.
 This column is said to be 10 kilometers high and several kilometers thick.
 The diva contest is held on top of these pillars.
 I heard that the reason for singing on top of the flower pillar was to make it easier for the Holy Fish Makris to see.

"There are a lot of beautiful women here, aren't there?

 Unlike Allen, who was looking at the flower pillars, Peromus was drawn to the appearance of the fishermen as he passed by.

"Aren't they the winners of the local qualifiers?"


 As Peromus and Allen continue their idle conversation, they head toward their destination.

 I've told the palace officials that I'm going to check out the market today to see what I can make money off of.

 The diva contest was held in honor of the Holy Fish Makris, the protector of the Proustian Empire, and the divas performed songs of thanksgiving.

 There is a reason why they sing to honor Makris, the holy fish.
 It is said that the woman who made love to Makris, Cynthia, was a woman who sang for a living.
 Makris fell in love with her, a commoner who sang for the public at a tavern in the city.

 The story goes that he wanted to express his gratitude to Makris through song, in honor of his encounter with Cynthia.

 Allen and his friends are not here for sightseeing, so they don't plan to visit, but it seems that the tavern in its original state 300 years ago is now a memorial hall.

 The holy fish, Makris, usually swims endlessly in this wide ocean and only comes to the Imperial Capital of Atlanta for one day.
 Moreover, the day he comes is fixed as the time when the crystal flower sends out its seeds.
 That's why the preliminary rounds are being held in each region in advance to coincide with the Holy Fish Makris.

 I've also learned about the qualifications for the diva contest.

 The qualifications for the Diva Contest are as follows
You must be a diva or have a talent in singing.
Must be female.
Must not have won in the past.

 It seems that the number of talent stars does not matter for the eligibility.
 Cynthia had a talent called "Singer" with one star.
 Because of Cynthia's singing and the fact that this was a contest to express gratitude to the Holy Fish Makris, it was for women only.

 And since it's a contest, the participants are judged on how good they are, but apparently it's not possible to win every year.
 If you place in the top five, you're eligible to participate in the next year's contest, but if you win, you can't participate in future contests.

 It reminds me of some year-end comedy contest.

"Ah! It says "magic shop. There it is, there it is. There's a lot of people here too. Do you have any crystal seeds?"

 Peromus sees the words "magic store" written on the store's sign.

"I don't know. I don't know. Peromus, keep an eye on the owner to make sure he doesn't say anything unnatural.

"Yes, I know.

 This is a magic shop that sells accessories and other equipment.
 A magic shop is a store that sells rings and other items with effects such as increased status and poison protection.

 There seems to be a standard for judging appearance in the evaluation, and it is said that all the participants in the tournament come to these stores that sell a lot of accessories.

 The female fishermen who were looking at the beautiful accessories, who were probably participants in the tournament, were all looking at Allen and his friends.
 They all seemed to be saying, "Why are two guys here at this time of year? "What's with the women's car?

"I feel like I'm in a women's car."

 I'm getting a lot of stares, and I'm picturing a scene where I went to a place where I felt out of place in a previous life.
 It reminds me of a time when I entered a women-only train by mistake and attracted a lot of attention.

"What's that?"

"I'm talking about this."

 Peromus was the son of the village chief, but he was interested in Allen, who was a serf, and I remember talking to him about this and that when we were in Krena.

 Unlike Crenna and Dogora, Peromus was one of Allen's rare sensible people.

"Welcome. Well, well, well. Please take your time.

 As they entered the store, the scorpion-faced owner with glasses greeted them.
 Allen and his friends are dressed well enough to enter the palace, so they are polite.
 This is a very expensive restaurant, so they have made themselves presentable in order to be treated appropriately.
 If you can gain trust not by words or attitude, but by appearance, so much the better.

"Excuse me. Do you have any crystal seeds?"

 I asked her if she had any crystal seeds, which had been the topic of conversation at the girls' night out two days ago.

"Crystal seeds? We don't have many."

 The store was crowded, but they were polite and helpful.
 Then he showed me something hidden under the show window.
 It looked like a glowing light blue ball about the size of a baseball.

"This is a crystal seed? They are beautiful.

"These are the only two we have in the store now. They cost 100 gold coins each, what do you want?

 They seem to be worth a certain amount of money.

 These are said to be like the seeds of a crystal flower.
 It is said that these seeds are swept away by water currents and move to the bottom of the sea, where a new crystal flower blooms.

 In reality, it seems that the citizens of the Imperial City of Atlanta are working together to collect the crystal seeds, and the Empire of Prostia is buying them for a good price.

"I'd like both of them, please. You don't have any more in this store, do you?"

 I said, and immediately paid for the two crystal seeds I had.
 Allen says in an implicit way.

"Thank you, sir. That's right. Sir, are you an official of the palace?"

"That's the way it is. I'm sorry I don't distribute more crystal seeds to this store. I've been getting good prices from other stores."

 Allen continued to talk, hoping to achieve one of his goals for the day.
 Peromus also watched the shopkeeper's demeanor for any signs of unnaturalness.

"Peromus also noticed that the owner's attitude was not unnatural. We, too, have relationships with other stores. I'm sure the new emperor isn't selling to other stores either."

 The scorpion-faced shopkeeper shines his glasses and sees through Allen's lie.

"I'm sure you're aware of this, aren't you?

 He looks as if he's been caught.

"Of course. The information network of the merchants is not to be underestimated. Are they still distributing them to please the nobles?

"Well, something like that. I'm sure you'll get a lot of crystal seeds this year. Please buy them at a good price then."

 Ignomus is distributing the items in the treasury in order to bring the nobles under his command.
The merchants seem to be aware of this.

"Of course. We'll be happy to patronize you."

"Of course, we'll be happy to patronize you." (Oh dear, that doesn't sound like a lie, but it's not on the books either.)

 Allen raised his intelligence to deal with the shopkeeper this time.
 Since he had increased his intelligence, he was able to see through most of his opponent's lies.
 However, even so, he could not say that he was perfect, and there would be times when he would have a tough time dealing with an experienced merchant who had a store in a prime location on the main street, as he did this time.
 There was probably a ten or twenty percent chance that he would miss the lie.

 Allen looked at Pelomus, but he shook his head.
 Apparently, Peromus, who had also boosted his intelligence with equipment, could not lie about the attitude of the scorpion-faced merchant in front of him.

 Obtaining the crystal seeds was one of the reasons why he had originally come to the Proustian Empire.
 However, there are no crystal seeds in the palace's storerooms, nor in the treasury.

 I checked with Princess Rapsonil to make sure, and she said that there should be a good amount of crystal seeds in stock in the palace treasury.

 As the shopkeeper in front of me said, I had originally thought that Ignomus had given out crystal seeds to the nobles, as they could be sold for a good price.

 However, there were no crystal seeds among the items distributed from the treasury in order to win over the nobles.
 Other works of art, such as paintings and sculptures, were recorded in the ledger, but only the crystal seeds were missing.

 So, did they sell them to the merchants to exchange for gold coins?
 What the nobles didn't need, but was valuable and could be sold at a good price, they sold to the merchants.
 There was a record of what was sold and at what price.

 However, only the crystal seeds were not recorded in the books.
 It seems that the palace has nearly 3,000 crystal seeds in stock just in case something goes wrong.
 Since the civil war a few months ago, there has been no movement in the books, but the inventory did not exist.

(Why not? Was there a reason why they couldn't put who they gave them to in the books?

 Apparently there's something we don't know yet.
 Allen looks at Peromus to see if he can find out more.
 Peromus replies with a glance that he agrees.

 As Allen and Peromus are communicating with their eyes, the scorpion-faced shopkeeper reminds them.
 The owner seems to be concerned about the schedule of crystal seeds that will be collected in the next month.
 Once a year, this giant crystal flower alone releases nearly 10,000 crystal seeds.

 As Allen and the others pondered, the shopkeeper's face lit up when he heard that the newly released crystal seeds would be sold wholesale.

 There are many reasons why we came to the Proustian Empire.
 In order to make Shea the Beast King, I came here to obtain equipment that would be the mark of the Beast King, and to obtain as many holy beads as possible.

 In other words, to find friends with buff skills.
 Many fishermen are born with buffing skills, but I don't have a plan, so I'm just hoping to find one.

 And finally, to strengthen my equipment.

 The crystal seed was also requested by the master craftsman, Habarak.
 This crystal seed is a material for "alchemy".

 The blacksmiths on Heavy User Island, led by the master blacksmith Habarak, are very talented at blacksmithing.

 Blacksmithing Talents by Star Number
1 star, the best blacksmith in the village.
2 stars, the best blacksmith in the town.
3 stars, the best blacksmith in the country.
4 stars, best blacksmith in the world.
5 stars, legendary blacksmith.

 Masterworker Habarak has 4 stars, and there are 9 other blacksmiths on Heavy User Island with 3 stars of talent.

 If you have the talents of these blacksmiths, you will be able to gain the skill of "Processing".
 If you don't have this talent, you can basically only process iron.
 To process mithril metals, you need to have the Blacksmith talent.

 The higher the number of stars you have, the harder metals you can process, such as mithril, babylon, and adamantite.

 Only a Habarak with four stars can process orichalcum.

 There is one more talent that only a blacksmith can have.
 It is the skill of "alchemy," which adds certain effects to the weapons and armor you process.

 By using this skill, you can add alchemical effects to your weapons in addition to their attack power.

 Examples of items that can be added to weapons by alchemy
Increased status
Increased critical rate
Increased attack damage
Reduced cool time
Giving attributes

 In the case of granting magic, the effect will disappear after a certain period of time, but in the case of alchemy, the effect will continue permanently.

 The higher the number of stars you have, the harder metals you can smelt, such as mithril, heliocane, and adamantite.

 Note that masterworker Habarak, who has a talent of 4 stars, is not able to smelt orichalcum.
 It is said that Habarak can only smelt adamantite.

 Allen's friends are turning to orichalcons for their weapons and armor, so I'm thinking of using the smelted materials to strengthen Allen's army.

 These crystal seeds seem to be quite effective at alchemy, and alchemical materials of the same class are limited.
 If you're in Rosenheim, a branch of the world tree is a very effective alchemy material, but cutting down the world tree will land you in jail.
 It is said that only fallen branches can be collected.

 Allen heard this story and tried to shake the trunk of the World Tree with a summoner to raise its status in order to collect the branch without cutting it down.
 It is another story that the Queen of the Elves fell to her knees with a pale face, saying, "You can't do that.

 Another famous story is that on the continent of Garlesia, where the Arbahar Beast Kingdom is located, there is a village called the Village of the Dragon People, which is ruled by dragon people who are said to be as strong as the demon people.
 I heard from Habarak that the 'dragon's eye rock' from there is a very good alchemy material.

"And the earring?

"Yes. I should have sent Peromus to see the Basque.

 Valuable items should only be shown to Peromus, who has appraisal skills.

"What? I'll die if I see a demon in front of me."

 Peromus says with trepidation.

 The Basque we fought recently was wearing an earring that seemed to protect him from all debuffs.
 It was filled with the magic of Merus, and it completely prevented any attribute from being given.

 Allen remembered that Bask's earring was in the shape of a seashell.