140-Episode 122 The first secret room meeting and the ...

'Are you nuts?'

Ricardo's face contorts into a frown.
You're the idiot.
--I'd like to tell him that, but I don't think that's a good idea. I mean, he's the key person this time, and anyway, we can't start talking unless he shakes his head. It's not good to upset him.

'You're the idiot.

I couldn't resist.


Oh, come on.
Ricardo, you're such an idiot, you'd bite ...... if you didn't know better. I just let it out. Because you're too stupid.

'Do you want to make the arms dealer rich?

He's a complete yankee.
If I moved to a new school and found this kind of person, I'd give up on my school life as soon as possible.
But there's no way I'm giving up now.

'Perhaps, when you heard the word "competition", you imagined a martial arts tournament or a mock battle. No, in fact, that's all you could imagine.
'............ So what?
'If blood is spilled, there will be a sticky situation afterwards.
'That's what a match is all about!
'Because you can only see things from one perspective like that, the economy of the 41st district is not running.

Oh ....... That's a serious tone.
You must have been hit hard and had no choice but to snap back.

'What do you mean, the economy isn't running?
'Exactly what I said. It's not like you haven't noticed, is it?I've only been here once and I've noticed a lot, haven't I?'

Ricardo closes his mouth.
You want me to explain? You want to hear it?

'It's called the first street, off the main road. For some reason, it's lined with weapon and armor shops. There seemed to be a lot of stores like that on the main street, why is that?

'Because the main street is the face of the city. It should have stores that are appropriate for the district and the lord of the district. The forty-first district is the city of hunting guilds. It's only natural that it should be lined with weapon shops.

Face,hey ......

I'm sure there's a line of them. You can find a lot of people who are interested in this kind of thing. ......, but there were no customers. This is because the only people who use those armors in this city are the military police and the hunting guild, and those two get their armors from the lord.
'Weapons and armor are an absolute necessity. If you don't provide them and maintain a certain level of accuracy, they can kill you. We can't leave it up to the individual, because we can't tolerate a situation where people without money can't afford to equip themselves properly.

That's a fair point. But that's why we're stuck.

If that's the case, why are the weapon shops open? Why don't they just make them and sell them to you? Why do they even bother opening a store?
'...... You want to sell more, don't you?'
'Yes. That's why .............'

Raise a finger to get attention.
Give them plenty of thinking time, and then tell them the answer.

'Because we have no money.

Arms dealers regularly supply weapons to their lords. But even Ricardo can't afford to replace expensive items such as armor so often.
As a result, hunting guilds and military police take good care of the weapons they are provided, and weapons are not sold.
That's why arms dealers keep their stores open. To get customers from outside.

But the only people who buy armor, aside from the military police, are the hunting guilds. Well, the lumberjack guild might need weapons for self-defense, but there's no reason for them to come to District 41 to buy them.

The old man who owned the weapon store on the first street asked me, 'Hunting guild? I asked. That's proof there are no other customers.

'Look. The economy is not running.
'What's that got to do with the gluttony contest?
'Seriously, don't you understand?

A little over the top, I show Ricardo a look of surprise.
This will make it harder for him to interfere with the troublesome details. If you interfere with too many details, it's like saying you don't understand. Don't ask trivial questions. Think for yourself. If you don't understand, just listen to the end of the story.

Interrupting in the middle will only make the story longer and blur the content.

'You thought the gluttony contest was a joke, didn't you?
'............ Ah.'
It's a great way to get the most out of your time and money.
'............, so what?
'Then let me ask you something.

Think it over.
Choose your words carefully, and answer.

'When the tournament is over, what will be left of it?

Ricardo raises an eyebrow.
He starts to speak, then stops.
The frown on his face suggests that he was afraid to say it. However, he must have made up his mind that he would not get anywhere if he kept quiet. After clearing his throat lightly, Ricardo replied.

'It's ...... pride and honor.
'Shut the f*ck up!Don't laugh at me!
'You're a boy, aren't you? You want that kind of thing.'
'You're making fun of me, aren't you?
'Yes, I am. You're an idiot. You're a patronizing a**h*le.'

When I said it clearly, Ricardo was beyond angry and pouted.
I seriously don't get it. He's looking at me like that.

'We're talking about the economy now, aren't we? Think about it. Can you fill your stomach with pride and honor?Can a man who sits in the back alley out of work get money?Is this the time to be basking in a moment of triumph while leaving the economy spinning out of control?
'Hey, if you're talking about the economy, say so at the beginning!
'That's all I'm talking about. That's all I'm talking about.

I know you hate to lose, but such an argument is spiteful and foolish.
Don't be defending your petty pride in a dire situation.
'It's not my fault, it's your fault for not telling me'?Pfft, idiot.

'If you hold a fighting tournament, who will make the profit?Well, the weapon and armor shops. The innkeeper and the innkeeper might make some money, too.

But only the stores near the venue will be profitable. If that's the case, there will be another dispute over where to hold the event. The restaurants right in front of the event site will be in full swing every day. The restaurants near the event site will be able to sell even if the food is so bad and the price is so high that it is ridiculous.
But if there is no event, the restaurant will not be seen. There would be no repeat customers.

'What's the point of making the weapon shop profitable?Make them make new, more powerful weapons and start a war in the upper districts?'
'You idiot!Who would do such a thing?
''Then where does the money the arms dealer makes go back to?Just because the armorer's pockets are warm doesn't mean the economy will turn. The city won't recover.''

I'm not saying the armory is bad, but it's not necessary right now. Above all, we should avoid further increasing the disparity within the same city. Even now, there's this stupid first and second preference thing going on. What's to stop it from getting worse?

'It's not the content of the game that should be considered. It's the benefit it gives.
'You don't care about the game?
'Buckaroo. Cut corners in the match and I'll beat you to a pulp and give you everything you want.
'Then what do you want me to focus on?

The games, the economy, the distribution of the benefits, and everything else, we're going to take care of it all and make it perfect, impeccable, and a complete success.

'Let me tell you the merits of holding a gluttony contest. When you hear this, you'll understand how great my idea is. Even if you're dumb.'
'Oh, talk to me about ............, you stupid face.'

You must be very frustrated if you're so sore at losing. Pfft.

'The venue will be here, in the 41st district. Gather up all the people who have extra hands and have them clean up the city. Make sure there's not a single piece of trash in sight. No stench, no stink, imprison anyone who is rebellious, but get them to participate in a positive way for this event.
'Imprisonment? ...... What do you think you're doing ...... to my people?
'You're a mess, Ward 41!And you stink!

'What ......?

I said firmly, Imelda and Javier nodded yes, and Demilly smiled modestly.
I'm not sure if you've seen this before, but I'm sure you have. You didn't notice ......? You'll be able to't get used to this stench.

It's a beautiful city where you can invite the aristocracy.

...... Well, Imelda is like an aristocrat, and the aristocrats who are Luxury's clients sometimes come to the sunny pavilion, so yeah, it's not a lie.

'You're not working anyway, so let me work.
'You know what!You'll need wages for that!Where are you going to get the money for a big public works project like upgrading the whole city?
'The forty wards will pay for it.

Demilly raised a strange voice.
What the hell are you doing with your bald head? Don't get up so suddenly. You'd think it was sunrise.

'To be precise, the 40th and 42nd wards will pay for the reserves. The 41st district will also give some money. Your place will be cleaned up.'
'Oh, um, Oba-kun. Does that mean I have to donate?To make this event a success?'
'No, no. It's an investment in ....... No, it's for advertising.

District Forty-one will gather the manpower, and Districts Forty and Forty-two will cover the costs. In exchange, we'll let you set up store on the main street of District Forty-one until the event.

'See how many stores are empty?
'Not on the main street. If there are, it's after the second street.'
'Then move the stores on the main street over there and vacate the stores.'
'What?You're an idiot, aren't you?
'Otherwise, you'll have to pay for it with the tax revenue of the forty-first district. Take it from the people.'
'............ you.'

This is one of the important plans.
There are too many unneeded stores on that boulevard. What's the point of having an arms shop on a street that outsiders visit first?
A bakery, a tavern, and an inn.
You can't even buy meat from hexenbiests on the main street. You can only earn money by cooking and making visitors loosen their purse strings with the smell. If you can't do that, what's the point of the boulevard?
Do you think the increase in standing and walking food will degrade your character?
Are you obsessed with prestige and appearance?

'The feudal lords will do whatever they can to suppress any trouble about eviction. You can use money, force, or anything else to convince them.
'......, you're forcing me to do difficult things.

Don't think you'll have a good time.
You'll be the one moving around the most until the event.

'Forty and Forty-two districts will be able to set up store in prime locations in exchange for funding. If we provide food and lodging for the large number of workers who come and go during the infrastructure construction, we can make some money, and if we do well, we can get new customers in other districts.
'Hmm ......, but the loss is still too great ......'.

Demilly, who had begun to count the money in detail, muttered with a sullen expression.
If you only take the surface, it may be true. But ......

'There's more to it than that, Demilly.
'Hey, Yashiro. What kind of attitude do you have when you call out your father?

Estella gives me a stern look when I say that.
Don't interrupt me, Estella.
Well, if it bothers you, I'll call you something appropriate.

'I can't help it. Can't you just rephrase it?
'It's polite to be friendly.'

I straighten my collar and turn to Demilly.

'It's not just that, Tsururin Angel Demily.
'I hope you don't mind if I call you that!Ooba-kun and I are good friends, you know!Let's just keep it friendly, okay? So please don't ever say that name again!
'......Yashiro............, I'll lecture you later.'

What the hell, Estella.

You'll be able to find a lot of people who will be able to help you.
'...... That's what you say to people who are lower than you.
'I don't care what you call me!I don't expect you to be polite at all. Keep talking.

Ricardo says, stomping his feet.

Well, now that we have the permission of all the lords, we can talk to each other without hesitation from now on.

'Once the roads in District Forty-One are cleaned, all the roads from District Forty to District Forty-Two will have been cleared. You'll be able to move around much more comfortably.'
'Hmm. I see. It's true that the roads here are terrible.

said the lord of District 40, where the roads were beaten up until recently. What are you talking about?

'Above all, if a big event is very exciting and successful, a lot of money will be generated. We should focus on this flow of people, money and goods more than profits.
'So there is a possibility that there will be a lot of interaction after the event.

Estella has a good point.
The new relationships made during the event will be sustained afterwards.
The number of favorite restaurants will increase, people in the same industry will work together, collaborations between different industries will take place. The possibilities are endless.

We are planning to advertise the event in a big way.
District 42 is now a center of food culture. There are a lot of foods that people in the 40th and 41st wards don't know about.
If we make full use of them, we can attract customers to District 42.

It's the farthest place, the city you don't go to unless you have to, the land of the end.
People may come to such 42 wards. It's well worth it.

'Demilly. Are there any carpenters who can follow Torbeck's lead?'
'Hmm ......, I know a few other carpenters who are good.'
'Good. Then let's mobilize all the carpenters to build the road and the venue.
'If we mobilize all the hams, we'll be able to clear the way pretty quickly.
'It's starting to get exciting, isn't it?

Estella and Demilly seemed to have caught on as well. It's good that the investors seem to be enjoying themselves. Even if they fail and a loss is incurred, they can just say 'well, it was fun' and pretend it never happened.

'Hey, stupid face!

Ricardo interrupts the tension that is slowly building up.

'The conditions are too good.
'It's a good thing, isn't it?
'Don't underestimate me. Every good deal has an ulterior motive. If we're being favored so blatantly, it's like we're being told to expect something.'

This guy must have seen a lot of dirty people in his time.
He's a poor guy who has a natural habit of looking into the belly of others.

'Oh ......, if I were a boob, I'd hug you.
'I refuse at all costs, you idiot.

He's starving for love. That's why you've got such an ugly face.

'It's an ugly face.
'Are you trying to fight with me?Just answer me!What the hell are you up to?

Some people get anxious when the odds are in their favor.
But when the situation is against them, they complain that it's unfair.
This guy is just such a guy.

In short, he's a coward.
He is always thinking about not wanting to be cheated, not wanting to fail, not wanting to be embarrassed, so he can't make bold decisions. That is why they cannot reform. That's why you're stuck in the doldrums.

For such people, it is better to show them a disadvantage that is only a little lighter than the advantage.
'I see, there are such disadvantages. But I can make it work,' ......, and if you tickle him like that, he'll instantly burn up.
Well, we'll see.

'What I'm planning, as I've been saying all along, is to set up a city gate. That's why I'm trying to drag you into the playing field.'

Since we're the ones begging for your participation, we'll have to do you a favor and make it look 'tasty' to get you to bite.

'Demilly originally said he wanted to avoid a quarrel between District Forty-two and District Forty-one. This time, the forty wards will be quite indulgent,......, but I'm going to ask them to lend me their chest, as they are big men with different experience and capabilities than us.
'Hahahaha!You can't say no to that, can you Ambrose?
'Hahaha, exactly. And I like the fact that it's from Oba-kun's mouth. He's a man who rarely praises others.

The two big men laugh at each other.
This case is not so good for Demilly.
If Demilly ignores the lower two districts, he won't have to do much damage. But Demilly got himself into this mess. To save Estella.

The lord of District 40 is so good-natured that it's ridiculous.

'Honestly speaking, thanks to you, Oba-kun, our profits have increased. I'm really grateful to you for the sugar.
'My lumberjack guild is screaming for more work thanks to the sewage.

So they're open to investing, Demilly says, and Javier says he's willing to back them up.

'But, yes, ......, if the forty districts win, I'll be happy to have Oba-kun as my chief of staff.


Estella let out a squeak at Demilly's sudden comment.
However, Demilly laughed without venom and waved his hands in the air.

'I'm not going to take it away from District 42. I just want you to come up with a few ideas on how to make the forty districts better. You'll have to stay in District Forty for a few years, though.

You've been bought off pretty well.
Not only will you be involved in the redevelopment of Ward 40, but you will also be in charge of it. ...... The average person in Ward 42 will be overjoyed to hear that you have been selected. ...... I don't want to do that.
What's so sad is that I've been living in a city of muscles and thin hair for years. ......

'Hey, Ambrose. If you want to entangle Yashiro, you'll need a lot of beautiful women with big tits.
'Ha-ha-ha. Of course, I've taken that into consideration. I'll give you three beautiful secretaries with big tits.

Let's go, forty wards!
...... No, no, no. .................. No, wait,......, but ......

'...... scum'.
I'm not sure what to make of that.

Ricardo gives me a contemptuous look as he listens to the conversation between the old men.
You're completely out of line, that accusation.

'I'm sorry, Stuart!My darling likes a moderately big tit like me!It's not enough to have all of them!You know, darling?

I'm not sure what to make of that. I'm sure you'll be happy to know that I'm not the only one who's a bit of a jerk.

'...... you ............ are you serious ......'
'Don't look at me like I'm dirty.

It's a d*mn sham. I think I'm going to catch a cold from all that goo.

'Are you not going to intervene in that conversation, Estella?
'Would you mind not speaking before you've had a chance to speak, Imelda?

Without even looking at her, Estella cut Imelda off with a slap.

'The size of your breasts is proportional to your value as a person. ...... That's Yashiro's basic stance.'
'Hey, you guys. I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to do that.

You think I'm not going to trigger it?I'm the guy who does it when he has to.

'Don't just stare at me in silence, say something, man.

Ricardo leans back in his chair and looks at me as if he were a fly swarming in pig shit on the street.
That kind of cold stare only irritates people if they are not beautiful women. I'll hit you, you bastard.

'That's why ......'

I think it's time to put it together.

'I'm fully motivated. ............'

I'm going to stand right in front of you, look you straight in the eye and say.

'The rest is up to you, Ricardo. ............ What are you going to do?

You can't take it home with you,...... well, that would be the normal decision,...... but this guy won't do that.
His eyes are glistening. He's like a hunter.
You guys who pride yourselves on hunting can't turn your backs on the enemy when you've been set up so well, can you?

'Fine. I'll take you up on your stupid offer.'

Arrogantly, Ricardo took the offer.
With a firm will that hid his pride, different from Estella's hating to lose.

You should join the hunting guild after you quit being a lord.
I think you've been influenced too much by Medora.

But you're the one who fell right into my trap when you tried to hunt me.

'Three districts will compete in a gluttony contest, and the district with the most eaters will win. Each ward chooses one of the strongest and competes fairly in front of the public. The winning district will have the right to force the losing district to do one thing. --Is that what you want to do?
'I'd like you to listen to the rules I'm about to propose. If you have any concerns, please let me know, but I want you to listen first. And I'd like to make one correction to the most important part of ...... in advance.

The main idea is fine as Ricardo said.

But there's one big difference.

'There is more than one person to select.'

I'll step forward and announce it loud and clear.

'The gluttony contest will be held as a team competition among the selected members.

I've successfully dragged Ricardo onto the field. I'd say this meeting was a success.
Now, Ricardo, you're going to work like a horse and cart.

For us, yeah.