Chapter 2-20 : Business Rival Ⅰ (part 2)

 

「Well then, thank you for the purchase, Andre-san. You can leave now.」(Lorea)

「Ou. I’ll come again ーーNo, no, no! Lorea-chan, why are you so cold toward me? I have something else to discuss today!」(Andre)

「Is that so? You don’t just want to enjoy this cool air?」(Lorea)

「No, I really have something else to discuss! Anyway, Sarasa-chan, can you install some air conditioners in our inn? Ah, as well as the artifact that can cool drinks and food. What is it called again? Refrigerator?」(Andre)

「Yeah, refrigerator. Well, I would gladly do it, but you should ask Diral-san first. They’re not cheap, so I think negotiating with her will be difficult.」(Sarasa)

Compared to Cooling Hats that only make your head and upper body cool, air conditioners are very expensive because they cool an entire room.

Even though Diral-san is one of the richest people in this village, I don’t think she can afford an air conditioner for every room in her inn. As for her large dining hall, she will need a big air conditioner which is way more expensive than the normal-sized one.

The amount of magical power required to operate all the air conditioners would be extremely large.

It wouldn’t be a problem for people like me who have a large amount of magical power, but most people would need a lot of magic stones or fangs from Ice Fang Bats as alternatives for producing magical power.

Therefore, it’s unlikely that Diral-san would agree with this idea and order air conditioners from me.

「I see… Well, that’s too bad. Actually, there’s another thing I want to tell you.」(Andre)

「What is it?」(Sarasa)

For some reason, Andre-san turned his eyes away from me and looked at Iris-san, then Iris-san, who noticed Andre-san’s gaze, nodded.

「Ahem! Let me explain. Store Owner-dono, do you know about the merchant who is currently staying in this village?」(Iris)

「You’re not talking about Gretz-san, are you? Then, I have no idea.」(Sarasa)

Iris-san knows Gretz-san because he sometimes visits my store, so it’s obvious that she’s not talking about him.

「This merchant is much older than Gretz-san, and he is slightly fat.」(Iris)

「He has been renting a house in this village for a while now. He is living with some servants, so he seems to have a lot of money.」(Kate)

「I see. If he is living with servants, that means he is not a peddler. So, what wrong with him?」(Sarasa)

Peddlers are merchants who visit various towns and villages to sell their products, and it seems like the merchant we are talking about is not a peddler.

Well, I don’t know much about him though. I have never seen a fat merchant in this village.

I might have noticed him if he was a wealthy merchant who owned a caravan, but there’s no way a caravan would come to this remote village.

「That merchant is buying the fangs from Ice Fang Bats just like you, but his purchase price is 30% higher than yours.」(Iris)

「Hee… That’s news to me.」(Sarasa)

「I see! So that’s why the number of people who come to sell fangs from Ice Fang Bats has decreased recently…」(Lorea)

Lorea-chan, who heard Iris-san’s words, suddenly raised her face as if she just realized it, and then Kate-san nodded deeply to her.

「Yeah, that must be the cause.」(Kate)

「Now that you mentioned it, I feel like the stock of Ice Fang Bats’ fangs is running low…」(Sarasa)

I’m sure I’d have noticed it if there was no one selling me the fangs, but Iris-san and Kate-san always sold me the fangs when they came home. Besides, Andre-san and his party members, also the other Collectors who are loyal to me still sell their Ice Fang Bats’ fangs to me.

Well, I’m not worried even though the amount of fangs that can be purchased has decreased because I don’t use many fangs to make Cooling Hats, so I think it will be fine.

Actually, I’ve been wondering why the amount of Ice Fang Bats’ fangs that I have is not increasing even though the number of new Collectors visiting this village is increasing day by day. So that’s the reason, huh?

It looks like the new Collectors prefer to sell their Ice Fang Bats’ fangs to that fat merchant rather than selling them to me. They can make 30% more money if they sell the fangs to him after all.

「Store Owner-dono, doesn’t it bother you?」(Iris)

「He pays 30% more than you. If it continues, there will be no one selling Ice Fang Bats’ fangs to you, you know?」(Kate)

Iris-san and Kate-san seemed to be worried about me.

「The fact that he pays 30% higher than me is bothering me, but to be honest, I’m not really worried about it.」(Sarasa)

I have already made a refrigerator and a freezer for my kitchen, and an air conditioner for my store, so I don’t need many Ice Fang Bats’ fangs. Currently, I only use the fangs to make Cooling Hats for sale.

I don’t make much money from selling Cooling Hats anyway, so there would be no problem if I couldn’t sell Cooling Hats anymore. At least for me, not for the villagers who make money by selling hats though.

Gretz-san and Daruna-san would be troubled if they can’t sell Cooling Hats anymore. After all, their income would decrease if that happened.

I don’t think it will affect their life since it’s not their main source of income, but no one is happy about losing money, right?

Besides, I put effort into creating this opportunity so that the villagers have additional income. It would be a let down if the villagers lost the source of their additional income.

「You don’t have to be an alchemist to be able to identify the quality of the fangs from Ice Fang Bats, so it’s not weird if that merchant can do it too.」(Sarasa)

「Yeah, even someone like me can do it.」(Lorea)

「Ah, in your case, it’s because you are a fast learner and have a good memory.」(Sarasa)

「Is that so? Thank you, Sarasa-san. Hehe~」(Lorea)

While looking at Lorea-chan’s happy face, I started thinking.

There’s nothing weird about paying 30% more than me, but I don’t know if you can make a profit with a high purchase price.

There’s no doubt that my purchase price is cheaper than the normal purchase price for Ice Fang Bats’ fangs in the royal capital, but that is because the place where Collectors can get the fangs is relatively close to my store.

If the Collectors want to sell their Ice Fang Bats’ fangs in other villages or towns, they have to consider the transportation costs, but not if they sell them to me.

That’s why I set my purchase price for this material slightly lower than the purchase price in the royal capital.

The problem is that there is another shop that pays 30% higher than me in this exact same village.

That merchant’s purchase price is high, really. If he was an alchemist, he could make a little bit of profit by selling artifacts made out of Ice Fang Bats’ fangs, but he isn’t. He seems to be just a normal merchant, so I don’t know how he will make a profit with such a high purchase price.

If he wholesaled the fangs to an alchemist in another town, he would definitely lose money.

Unless the stock of Ice Fang Bats’ fangs in the market was running low and the price was getting more and more expensive, I don’t think he will make any profit by wholesaling them.

…Wait a minute… Don’t tell me….

 

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