hapter 58: That time when pirates came just as things were going well
It’s been 30 days since I came back from the village . We continued our reclamation project and the area we’ve cleared is now pretty wide . Our wood shed’s already full because of that so we just cut them into chunks and piled them up in a way that they won’t fall .
Also, after several trials and errors, we’ve finally succeeded in making bricks so I started making a charcoal kiln . After building the basic shape, I coated it with mud which will provide additional insulation as well as reinforcing the whole thing then tried burning the cut up tree stumps and leftover firewood so that we’ll get the feel of it .
The first few attempts only resulted in ash, but recently, we’ve started being able to maintain its shape . Once we’re able to make enough of that in there we can just use them instead of firewood . We’ll also be able to use them for trading .
We could also use them for smithing since I eventually plan to recruit someone with that skill, but we should just gather them up for now . We should also store up the wood vinegar that’s the by-product of the charcoal making process since we could make bath related products to sell . It would be nice if we find a market for them though .
Since our fields are wide enough, we finished up planting the wheat I brought so all that’s left to do is to wait till that’s ready to harvest . We also made a field specifically for the potatoes which sprouted soon after so it’ll probably be ready to harvest within two months . We’ll continue planting the ones we harvest to increase their amount in order to secure a stable supply of carbohydrates .
We also planted the beans but after we harvest them, we’ll just save them for the meantime and focus on increasing the number of potatoes and corn that we have . We’ll just get back to them once we’ve got more than enough stock of the other two .
I was worried whether or not we’ll be able to raise the corn here but it was a needless concern in the end . At this rate, the corn will be ready for harvest once summer comes .
As for the fish, they have been swimming energetically so far . The aquatic plants have also started sprouting and I’ve confirmed that they have already taken root I don’t have to worry that they’ll float away as much . I wonder if it would be better if we submerge some logs and boulders so that the fish will have something they could use as refuge? I should ask about that the next time I return to the village . I also have to ask about their breeding season and how to take care of the juvenile fish .
The bees are currently doing alright and have already started forming their beautiful, amber colored, hexagonal shaped structures inside their nest . It looks like pollen is starting to block the entrance so they probably have accumulated a lot of honey by now, however, I will wait a bit longer till they’re able to stock up with more and build more nests . The bees might run away if I take some too soon as well . I guess I should start discussing with the honey bees how we’re going to harvest the honey .
The Mint and Lavender are part of the same family of plants so they’re growing really well and rapidly multiplying . As for the Chamomile, it’s starting to sprout in its pot so I’ll try planting it in the same area as the other two .
I hope that these guys will propagate naturally even if we don’t interfere . I mean, it seemed like the mint was genetically enhanced with how wildly it was spreading when I discovered them in the forest so there will be no problems as long as we periodically trim them so that they won’t become overgrown and messy . Those plants can multiply just by planting a stalk or leaf after all, so if we don’t do that, it will be really troublesome to get rid of them completely .
As for the poultry, they still haven’t been attacked so far . The chickens have already begun laying their eggs and are currently warming them so we’ll be able to see chicks soon . It looks like the plan to increase their numbers is going really well . Even if their numbers reach a point where it starts getting crowded inside the fences, we could just let them graze freely so there would be no problems with that .
Anyway, since we had some eggs, I took one and used it to make sweet french toast to give to the children . They really liked it so I decided to make it again next time we get another stock of eggs .
「What’s this~? It’s really tasty Maou-sama~!」
The smiles that children had at that time really healed me .
There had also been several boats that came to the island so we were able to trade some raw meat and sugar among other things and earn some money . Because of that, the first thing I did was to secure everyone’s beddings and replenish our supplies .
In order to keep our business partners happy, I created another bathing area for the people riding the boats to use to keep themselves clean while in the middle of their trip . I also sell them clean water along with the other stuff in order to get more income . Once we save up enough money from that and our trading, I’m thinking that we should buy more livestock so that we’ll have a variety of them .
Anyway, I want to reach a point where we have enough leeway that we can offer our trading partners the fresh water for free . I was also thinking of making lodging facilities with hot springs in order to draw in more visitors in the future . I was told by that Demon Lord’s subordinate that the mountain at the center is an active volcano so I’m bound to dig up one when I decide to look for it . It’s my dream as a former Japanese after all!
「For today, we’re going to make a pathway that will extend until the area where the former Demon Lord was going to build his castle . Since the way there is dangerous, I’m thinking of thinning out the trees inside the forest to let the sunlight pass through so it will be easier to see if there are bears or any other dangerous beasts approaching . For now though, let’s just extend a pathway towards that area . I want it to be wide enough to accommodate about two two-horse carriages traveling towards opposite directions . That would be for the future though so for now, it would be fine if we just cleared enough for a single carriage and pedestrians to be able to use it at the same time . My predecessor’s supposed to be castle area is pretty wide and there’s already a well there so I’m thinking of constructing buildings and making that area our new home . Well anyway, for now, let’s just begin our preparations」
After saying that, they finished their preparations and we started our work . As usual, I was the one in charge of cutting the trees while they chopped them into smaller chunks for storage and cleared away the debris behind me . It takes an hour to walk normally towards our destination but it will probably take a day to get there while cutting trees so I decided to just leave the stumps behind for now .
Also, I know it was within my instructions but I actually don’t know how wide a carriage is . Since I don’t know, I’ll just ask about it . This isn’t anything to be ashamed of but I need to be careful since there are some people who think that it is and hold it against me .
「How big was a carriage again?」
「Eh? I guess it is probably big enough」
That’s what the guy next to me replied when I asked . He didn’t seem sure about it but one can probably fit through here .
「It’s just wide enough to fit four people right?」
After that, they started arguing .
「No! It should be this big right?」
「No no no, it should be a bit wider to accommodate the luggage in the middle!」
「That’s a more expensive carriage you’re talking about you know?」
「Let’s just use the largest one to be safe okay!」
Well, I guess it’s fine . While they were busy with that, I went ahead and continued knocking down the trees while maintaining the current width . Once we reached a pretty decent distance away from our starting point, we decided to take a break for lunch .
While we were eating, the fox-eared old man came to talk to me .
「Caam, can I talk to you about something?」
「What is it?」
「We’re short on hands no matter how you look at it . We won’t be able to do anything at this rate . We’re especially short on artisans . That’s the main reason why we can’t build more houses . We don’t have enough tools as well . It doesn’t matter whether we bring someone from the village or employ someone from the outside, what’s important is that we do something about it」
「……I know that . However, we don’t have money and the crops are still growing so I don’t think we should do that right now . Once we have enough money, only then can we recruit someone from the town or the village」
「I see . You’re really kind, aren’t you? You’re not the type of man who forces others to obtain something . Well, let’s just take things slow . I think the other two will be fine with that as well」
「Thanks . Well, I guess I should just try asking the village chief if we could recruit some people from the village when I get back home」
「Well, that’s fine . I think you should do just that . Anyway, for someone who was suddenly thrust in here and given 50 humans slaves, I think Caam’s doing pretty well you know? Especially when it comes to the supplies」
「We have fresh water, we can make salt from the sea water all around us and we can even make sugar . We also have some crops like wheat and for our meat, we can just catch some from the forest or the sea . For the time being, I’ve made it so that we have our basic necessities so we won’t die……well, I guess it’s still possible but all that’s left is for them to go along with the momentum that I’ve built up . I don’t actually have any idea what I’m doing and what I should do, but even if things get rough, I believe that things will work out eventually」
「What are you trying to say?」
「I’m saying that it’s fine to just wait and not rush things . I mean, since storms don’t last forever, if you just wait it out, you’ll eventually see the sun again after all」
「Maou-sama! It’s a pirate ship!」
「See? While we were being patient, the situation eventually changed right? That’s why I’m sure our shortage of hands will eventually be resolved and our money problems will be settled as well」
After saying that, I stood up and wiped the dust off my butt .
「You have a troubled look on your face you know?」
「Well, I want to avoid conflicts if possible after all . However, the other party doesn’t feel the same way . This kind of situation is inevitable since we’re on an island and we might get killed if we don’t deal with them so even if I don’t want to…… Ahー, this is starting to get heavy, isn’t it?」
「Make sure it doesn’t reach the point where you destroy yourself okay? Unlike the body that heals over time, depending on the damage, it’s something that can’t be easily healed」1
「Yes, I’ll keep that in mind . Thank you very much for your advice . Well, even if it gets to that point, I can just go back to the village and get spoiled by Suzuran and Latte all I want」
After saying that, I left, passing by my house to get my crowbar, shovel, and machete, then went to the shore .
「Maou-sama, that is a pirate ship!」
「Uwaa…… So they actually use a flag with a skull symbol on it…… Do they actually want everyone to know they’re pirates? What a bunch of idiots」2
「……eh? Is that it?」
「Eh? Should I be saying something else?」
「No…… It’s just that, we’re likely to be attacked here but you’re just acting like it’s nothing……」
「But I’m only telling the truth . That’s a pretty obvious sign that they’re pirates, right? Well anyway, everyone, I have a question for you . Should we hijack that pirate ship once they anchor at the bay, or should we sink it……? Which option would be good? Personally, I already plan to reduce the casualties from both sides but I’ll also still plan to charge them as much of the nuisance fee as possible」
「Eh? Sink it you say? Can you really do something like that easily?」
「Hm? Well, I’ll probably manage somehow」3
「……Is that so?」
「Well then, I ask you, should we sink them, or steal their ship? It’ll be pretty dangerous to steal it though since that would mean all of the pirates would have to disembark first」
「「「Please sink it」」」