The Tanaka Family Reincarnates - Chapter 43
Chapter 43 – The Merchant and the Poor Noble
Palace is new.
The territory on the edge of the country is always exposed to the threat of monsters.
The southern side, which doesn’t face the sea, has a wide range of appearance, and the three lords of Pasotto, Langland, and Stuart territory has managed to protect their land in a harsh environment.
Six years ago, two territories fell at the same period as the Pasotto territory collapsed from bankruptcy, and the Lord of Langland and his son, the successor, were killed by monsters.
Despite there are more than enough aristocrats in the central territories, no one wants to be a frontier lord.
The Stuart territory, too, had just lost its lord as the lord died from the injuries he got while hunting monsters and was replaced by his son.
It was a big problem for the country for not having anyone to rule the territories where many monsters appear. In the end, Count Stuart, who governed the Stuart territory, was made to rule over these three territories by imperial order.
It was also six years ago when Joshua first met the Count Stuart family.
finally Joshua’s POV!!
My father, who was doing business in a territory near the royal capital, moved to a borderland territory named Palace, a new territory formed from three territories merged. Who knows what my father was thinking back then.
What I hated the most when helping Father was the courtesy visits to nobles.
“Remember, Joshua. As always, put up with whatever they say.”
Father always reminds me that.
People who only care about appearance while being ugly on the inside.
All the nobles I know are stuck-up snobs. I simply couldn’t understand what things they’d done for them to be so haughty.
“I know, Father.”
Today’s job is to be made fun of. I answer with a sullen look.
To my bad luck, the Count Stuart family we will go to today seems to have a son and daughter around my age. In the previous territory, I got my favorite clothes torn by noble children. I was told, ‘Don’t wear such good quality clothes when you’re just a commoner,’ or something.
“We need to be liked by the lord if we want to do business in Palace.”
Father looked a little nervous about doing business in a new land.
We must not offend Count Stuart, who became the only noble in the vast land called Palace, despite being a borderland.
Count Stuart, who rules over a borderland territory for generations, has the plainest mansion out of all the nobles I have visited by far.
Although the garden is considerably large, there aren’t any splendor decorations even when we’re guided into the mansion.
Today we are guided to the drawing room directly upon arriving, unlike many times before when our visits were suddenly canceled, or we were made to wait for a long time even though we had made an appointment in advance and arrived on time.
“Pleased to meet you. My name is Daniel Rothschild.”
I back one step from Father and bow my head. Nobles who value proprieties will be in a bad mood if the bowing angle is shallow, so I make sure to further lower my head until the noble gives permission to raise it.
“No need for polite greeting, please raise your head. Pardon me, it is a little untidy, but please sit here.”
When I raised my face, there were white cloths everywhere in the drawing room.
Other than the pointed sofa, it is filled with delicate laces and fine silks.
Among it was an angel.
Hair shining in gold and green eyes. Soft and tender features. The simple one-piece dress of the same color as her eyes looks good on her.
“What fine fabrics.”
Father talks to the Count while letting me, who was dazing at the angel, sits. Certainly, I can tell just by looking that all of it is of higher quality than the silk fabrics Father handles.
“Stuart territory’s sericulture is thriving after all. Welcome to Palace. I’m the lord, Leonard Stuart.”
The Count shakes hands with Father naturally, then turns towards me.
“This is my son, Joshua.”
The Count, who has the same golden hair as the angel, smiles and shakes hands with me too.
It was the first time a noble asked for my handshake. Father doesn’t show it, but he’s also surprised.
“How old is Joshua-kun?”
“Joshua will be 8 this year.”
Father answers in my stead.
“Really, he looks pretty mature, doesn’t he. He is one year younger than George.”
Muttering that, the Count calls his children.
Other than the angel, two boys come out from the white cloth.
‘Emma…’ when the Count called, the angel raises her head, squeezes through the cloths, and climbs to the Count’s lap.
“My eldest son, George. 9 this year.”
The boy called George smiles broadly and lightly nods.
“My second son William is 3 years old.”
Like imitating George, William also smiles broadly and nods lightly.
“And, this angel is my eldest daughter, Emma. She will be 6 soon.”
The Count strokes the angel’s head.
It looks like I’m right thinking she’s an angel.
“There are no children around who are of the same age. I will be happy if Joshua can get along well with my children~?”
Count Stuart, who has a sturdy build as a frontier lord, bows his head lightly. Even though it’s for the sake of his children, to bow to a commoner child like me…
What a weird noble… It’s my first time seeing a noble that’s not stuck-up.
Then, the angel stares at me intently.
I have freckles on my face. I was always mocked and disdained by noble children who have a high sense of beauty.
Even though some of them hide their freckles with thick makeup.
Freckles have been my number one complex ever since I become aware of them. If there was such a cute angel here, I should have put on the makeup I’m not used to.
For some reason, I don’t want to be hated by the angel in front of me.
Other than that, a strange hobby will likely bloom if I’m rebuked by this angel.
*trot trot trot* The angel came in front of me. Perhaps trying to look at the freckles closely, she brings her face closer.
Unlike my face, there are no such things as freckles on her clear white skin.
When I am fascinated by the angel, she brings her face even closer…
A soft fleeting touch falls around the base of my nose.
” “Wha—!!” “
Joshua and the Count raise their voices at the same time.
“Joshua-kun? I didn’t mean for you to get along in that way.”
The Count was angry with a super low voice, but I couldn’t answer him at that moment. My face was entirely boiled red. I was kissed in the place with the densest freckles, where my complex is, and the impact of being kissed was great.
‘Fufufu,’ the angel laughs. It was a divine angel smile.
“Your freckles, it looks like a lot of booklices. It’s lovely.”
I would know later that it was Emma’s smile whenever she saw insects.
With just this, my complex became my charm point. The angel has, Emma has said that it’s lovely. I’m so happy I feel like I’m about to ascend to heaven. I’m glad that I have freckles.
“Joshua-kun? I didn’t mean for you to get along in that way, got it?”
The Count, who took Emma’s hand and put her back on his lap, warns with a low, low voice.
Unfortunately, Joshua can only see Emma in that way now.
*click* The door opens, and a strong-looking beauty comes in holding a tea set. She makes fragrant tea slowly with elegant movements.
The Count and Joshua have calmed down a little thanks to the fragrant smell.
The Count introduces the beautiful woman after all the tea is placed in front of everyone.
“This is my wife, Melsa. Melsa, Daniel has come to greet us as he wants to do business in Palace.”
If I remember correctly… the Count’s wife is a talented woman who made a name for herself in the royal capital.
That exact talented woman is bringing them tea like a maid. Father’s poker face finally crumbles.
“D-Drinking the tea the Madam personally makes is something of great honor!”
Melsa smiles at my flustered father.
“A large number of one-horned rabbits appeared yesterday, so all the people in the mansion are working on the fur processing. I can’t guarantee the taste, but please help yourself.”
One-horned rabbits usually appear in groups. The Count also explains that the fur has to be processed right away, so it takes a lot of labor.
“I think it will be on the market next week, you can buy it for a try. It doesn’t sell well in Palace because it’s warm here, but if you bring it to the north, maybe it will earn you around the amount of pocket money, right?”
Around the amount of pocket money? Not only one-horned rabbit’s fur popular in the royal capital, the failure of making one-horned rabbits into fur products even when it appears because the hunter is unskilled often happens. So if enough fur can be secured to be processed, it will make considerable profits.
“Incidentally, how much is one in the market?”
Father merchant’s eyes shine. Rothschild Company deals with any kind of product and has secured sales channels inside and outside the country.
“…there’s a large quantity this time, so around two silver coins?”
Father and I gulp spontaneously.
Cheap. Too cheap. Is this lord terrible at business?
Even I, who have never helped with sales, know that it’s an unsuitable price. No matter how bad the quality of the one-horned rabbit’s fur, he has never seen the market price to be less than 20 silver coins, even at a cost price.
“Count. I will give you ten times the price, so could you sell it all to me?”
Father jumps at the sudden ‘get rich quick’ scheme. If he gets a large amount of one-horned rabbits, his business range will expand.
“Hm? That’s no good. If it’s the 100 rabbits me and my younger brother killed, I can give you an acquaintance price?
Count Stuart responds to Father like it’s just a trifling matter.
I will say it again. Is this lord terrible at business? In the first place, these white cloths spread in front of them look like it could fetch a high price. Even so, not even Father nor I know that the Stuarts are doing sericulture.
“Um… Count… What will you do with these cloths?”
I ask nervously.
“Ah, sorry that it scatters everywhere. Our maid is getting married, you see! The whole family is making a wedding dress. We don’t have enough time and are kinda under pressure to finish it fast.”
You handmade it?! No, no, I think you can buy several wedding dresses in the royal capital if you sell these cloths. And these fine and delicate laces are at the level that the Queen uses… When I keep looking at the laces, it reaches the Count’s hand.
“Sorry. We are really a bit tight on time.”
The Count’s hands are moving at high speed. The Count is plaiting a fine and delicate lace.
Is he an artisan!
When I look again, the youngest child, William, who was introduced as 3 years old, is sewing shining white beads on the white cloth with a miraculous balance, George is making artificial flowers that could be mistaken as real ones, and the angel is cute… I mean, she is showing lace designs to her father.
“Umm… that dress… Our company also handles it, so how about we buy it?”
Father proposes while looking at the Count’s speedy hands.
‘I even want to buy the lace he just made right now’ is written all over Father’s face.
“Well… my territory is a little poor. Our family and servants have to handmade all of our things. We have almost sold everything in the mansion.”
The Count answered embarrassedly. His hands continue to move at high speed.
Ah, this lord is terrible at business.
The most terrible in the world at that.
Even though there’s a mountain of superior quality things that will sell very high in front of him.
Someone, please tell him. Eh? The people are also bad at business? It’s a lie, right?
“Count Stuart… Could you leave the management of the territory’s specialties to me?”
Father jumps at the possible big profits… or rather, he is agape at the ‘unable to just watch and stand by’ situation. With the Count’s skills, he can buy many buildings just by knitting lace.
Someone please tell me just how exactly they can be poor.
“Eh? Is it okay to leave it to you?”
The Count accepts immediately. He definitely has been deceived many times.
‘Is this really a feudal lord?’ I become worried. Even I acutely feel it, Father probably feels it all the more.
I have to do something about them.
Like this, many high-quality Palace’s specialty products finally see the light with Joshua and his father’s help. After selling the things in the mansion for generations to somehow continue the territory management, the Stuart family finally recovers just before they sell the mansion itself.
A few years later, Emma’s ability made the already fine silk the finest, making Palace the wealthiest territory in the country.
My father, Daniel, and Count Stuart became drinking buddies and are very close to each other.
“Joshua, the sales of the shops I entrusted you with are satisfactory this year as well. Which shop do you want for your next birthday?”
Father asks while looking at the account books of the three shops. I already decided on my answer.
“Father. I will return the three shops to Father. In exchange, can you leave the branch store in the royal capital to me?”
Father holds his head.
“You… are you serious?”
The royal capital branch is the only store of Rothschild company to run a deficit due to the First Prince faction’s boycotts. Harassments have also been reported frequently.
“Because Emma-sama will be in the royal capital next year. It’s okay, Father, I won’t lose to the Second Prince.”
I answer with an evil face I would never show to Emma.
I hope you will stop getting hurt without me knowing like last time. No matter how many hearts I have, it won’t be enough. I can’t bear to lose Emma.
“I also want to go to the academy, so it’s about time to buy a title?”
As long as you’re willing to pay, you can buy noble rank up to Baron. It’s just not easy to buy because of the hefty sum.
I’ve always been serious.
Author’s note: It’s trivial information, but…
One gold coin = 100,000 yen.
One silver coin = 1,500 yen.
One bronze coin = 100 yen.
I write it with my estimated image.
I might make a mistake as I’m bad at numbers.
T/N: This is the end of the “Borderland Palace” arc! Next chapter will be the start of the ‘Royal Capital The Three Siblings Go to the Academy” arc.