Our next stop was the market.
I decided to buy some ingredients to solve my dissatisfaction during the trip.
If I could buy yeast, I could have soft bread.
If I could buy rice, I could eat rice.
The market was much busier than in Lotus Town, but prices were a bit higher, as we had expected.
I looked for yeast and rice, but none were available.
It’s important, so I’ll say it twice, but there were none. I’m disappointed.
I had assumed that even if they didn’t sell dry yeast, they had rice.
In a country of no rice, not a single rice, I began to cry
Well, instead I stocked up on vegetables, meat, fruits, nuts, herbs, dried spices, and so on.
Since I would be in the Royal Capital for a month anyway, gathering information, Alchemizing, and Blacksmithing, I decided to procure my own yeast, or rather, make my own yeast.
I bought some things at the market, and when I was walking around town looking for a bookstore, I noticed a large general store.
I looked at the sign and saw that it said [Sinker Trading Company]. Robert-san’s store! Let’s drop by.
I entered the store and looked around.
The main products were daily necessities, but the colors were brighter and the prices seemed to be a little higher than the other stores I had seen so far.
Is this a store for aristocrats? I thought.
If so, it might not be a good idea for me to be there.
I asked the store clerk if Robert was in the store, and he said he was today, so I was told to wait for a little.
While I was waiting, Robert appeared from the back and called me.
He is as fresh as ever.
“Hello, it’s you, Louis-kun. What are you looking for today? Or do you have something unusual you’d like us to buy?” (Robert)
“Hello, Robert-san. I just happened to find your store on my way back from the market. I’m looking for some soap, but I don’t see what I’m looking for, so I was thinking of making my own.” (Louis)
“Hmm? Make it yourself? Louis-kun, would you like to tell me more about it and have a cup of tea?” (Robert)
“Of course, that’s good.” (Louis)
He invited me to the back of the house and I followed Robert to the reception room.
“Louis-kun, do you make your own soap?” (Robert)
“Yes, if it is as good as the soap sold today, it is rather easy to make. However, what I am trying to make is a soap that smells good and lathers well when you use it.” (Louis)
“If you make that soap, will you give me one of them? Of course, I will buy it. If I use it and it is good enough to sell as a product, will you let me sell it?” (Robert)
“I will bring you a sample when it is finished. I will bring you a sample when it is ready.” (Louis)
“Thank you very much. By the way, do you have any ideas for entertainment? I’m also being asked by the nobility, but I’m having a hard time finding anything good.” (Robert)
“Entertainment? How about Board games?” (Louis)
“What is a board game?” (Robert)
Well, this person has a very curious and slightly terrifying expression on his face.
There are a lot of things I quickly make, so why don’t I show him how to make an E-Sugoroku set? [T/N: Sugoroku are Japanese board games two of which are similar to either backgammon (ban sugoroku) or snakes and ladders (e sugoroku).]
“I’ll make one right now, so can you prepare a piece of large paper or parchment and a piece of wood?” (Louis)
“Of course. Let me get them ready immediately.” (Robert)
I wrote many circles on the prepared parchment, marked the large circle in the center as the goal, and wrote small events such as “Lose One Turn,” “Back to the Start,” “Back to Four Tiles,” etc. on the circles in between.
Next, dice and pieces to be placed were made from pieces of wood. The pieces were for four players, and each piece was shaped differently.
“I have completed it.” (Louis)
“Is this the E-Sugoroku? How does one use it?” (Robert)
“Each player uses a piece. Simply put, it is a game in which the player rolls the die, and the number that appears on top of the die is the number of circles the game piece will move to, and the first player to reach the goal wins. Let’s try it together.” (Louis)
I rolled the dice and advanced my piece as many times as the number of dice rolled. The number that comes up is 3.
Then it is Robert’s turn, and he rolls a 6. He seemed to feel a sense of superiority as he advanced his piece.
“This is good if you have a high number rolled.” (Robert)
“Not necessarily. There are some events during the game that would require you to skip a turn or move back.” (Louis)
I rolled the dice a second time and again got a 3, my piece lined up with Robert-san.
Robert grinned and said,
“I think I’m going to finish ahead of you.” (Robert)
He rolled the dice again and got a 6.
“See, I’m moving a lot in one turn! 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, what’s written here? Return to the start? Why?” (Robert)
“Why? Don’t you think it would be exciting if we wrote in events like this, going forwards and backward the game is simple fun (you might also show everyone a ridiculous expression)?” (Louis)
“Wow! This is amazing! I will buy your idea. Sell this to me.” (Robert)
“Why?” I asked him about it, and he told me that there were very few entertainment products like this that could be commercialized and sold, but he didn’t have any ideas.
After another discussion, we agreed that he’d give me 10% of the sales.
I felt sorry for him, so I decided to offer him another idea that could be sold en masse.
The E-Sugoroku sets were going to be handled by the Merchant’s Guild and would be drawn on parchment.
I made a negative copy of the game using Huey’s mucus, the lines were raised high and hardened.
After that, if I apply ink and press it against something, I can print it in large quantities in the same way as an old printing press.
I decided to make something like a stamp.
With that other idea, it was decided in the final contract that I would take 15% of sales in the first year and 10% starting the second year.
He asked for more ideas, and I promised to come back with another idea the next time I had a sample of the soap. I left the store after that.
It was still early, but I decided to return to the inn and try my hand at making yeast starters and soap in my room.
For the yeast starter, I asked Huey to make a small bottle from his mucus, then I fill it with raisins and water, and cover it with a piece of cloth.
All I had to do was shake the bottle occasionally and wait for it to ferment.
The problem was the aromatic oil, the fragrance component of the soap.
I wanted to make a soap with a floral fragrance, but I needed a lot of flowers for extracting essential oil from flowers, so I decided to use the oranges I bought at the market.
Using a knife, I separated the orange into fruit and peel and extracted the aroma oil from the peel.
Normally, there are many ways to make essential oil, such as heating, cooling, and soaking in alcohol, but since I have the Alchemy Magic [Extraction], I can probably do it easily.
I used [Extraction] on a large number of orange peels and stored the essential oil in the bottle that Huey made for me right next to me. Okay!
I mix the strong alkaline solution that Huey makes with the cooking oil that I had bought and add the aroma oil.
Then I poured the mixture into the molds that Huey made for me and lined them up.
When I looked around, I found the small room is filled with a large number of orange segments, peel shavings, and many containers that looked like pound cake molds, as well as a large number of containers filled with raisins.
Yeah, it would be bad if the innkeeper saw this or something.
I asked Huey to take in the orange peels and the rest, and he sent me a happy telepathic message that they were “delicious”.
I opened the window to ventilate and turned both of my palms toward the soap.
Originally, it would take about a month to dry and cure before it was finished, but I felt like I could do it with Alchemy Magic, so I tried [Maturation]. [T/N: I used maturation instead of aging, curing, and ripening, so it would sound fine even if he used it on other products in the future.]
If I failed, I would make a new batch and offer it to Robert-san and say it would be ready in a month.
Then I cast [Maturation].
The soap in the mold instantly shrank and hardened a bit.
I cast [Maturation] again just to be sure.
Because it felt to me that the center was not completely dry.
I took one out of the mold for a test and cut it over a large cloth.
The orange scent was strong and the inside was soft, dry, and waxy.
The fragrance lingered, so I stored the finished products in my Infinite Storage.
I left the inn after ventilating the room.
I went outside to test the soap.
After enhancing my physical capabilities and making sure there was no one around, I took a 30-minute run out of the city’s outer wall. Then I took out my bathtub as usual.
I filled the bathtub with hot water and added baked stones to raise the temperature, before soaking in the bath.
I doused my body with warm water, then I tried the new soap.
It lathers well. The orange scent is pleasant. It removes dirt well. It’s a finished product!
I washed off the soap, then soaked myself in the bath, and thought about it.
Tose with flowers and strawberries scented would be nice, too.
It’s interesting to be able to use alchemy.
It’s also interesting that people other than adventurers can earn money.
After enjoying the bath, I dumped out the hot water and stowed it away as usual.
Before returning to town, I stopped by a small forest and cut a few tree branches, and then cut them into evenly sized pieces after removing more snags to make them into rounds.
The finished parts were as close to the same size as possible.
There were about 150 pieces.
It would have been better if they were evenly shaped, but that’s about all I could do without the right tools.
The 150 pieces are lined up and one side is blackened with a red hot iron spear heated over the Life Magic [Fire].
This is fine enough for a sample.
Looking at the pieces where one side is black, any modern person knows what it is.
Samples of the soap and the new entertainment product are ready.
If they sell, I can spend my time trying to improve my cooking and my magical trial and error.
I arranged the black parts to face one side into my magic bag and headed back to town.
I ate dinner at Calm Harbor Pavilion.
At Calm Harbor Pavilion, I had two pieces of hard bread, cubed Orc steak, and vegetable pottage.
The steak sauce was good, but it would have been better if it had a little more sweetness.
I’m going to borrow the kitchen to make bread when the yeast I’m making is finished.