Chapter 48 – Mining (first part)
The next morning after the banquet. While having a meal, Eiji was able to ask more details regarding the city of Nazioni from Tanya.
What he had for breakfast was the baked bread from last evening and some reheated leftovers.
On their dining table, there was a small amount of pickled food, fresh vegetables, and wild plants. In addition to that, a simple salad mixed with some seasoning-related ingredients, such as cider vinegar, olive, and salt, was made.
– I see. The ruler has 3 sons, and Dante, who came to this village, is his third son. Also, for the time being, it doesn’t look like he’s next in line for the throne.
– That’s right. He has aspired to become one since his childhood, but despite him getting older, Dante wouldn’t change that childish way of thinking. The city won’t disobey him, but at the same time, they don’t see him as their partner. It seems that they considered him as a nuisance and drove him off here.
– I remember Katharina telling me that she used to dye?
– It appears that she made a living from dyeing wool. She didn’t state it clearly, but I wonder if she’s divorced.
– Ah, is that so?
– Perhaps it is, but for some reason, she doesn’t give an impression of having dealt with men, or so you could say….
– Still, to think that you were able to collect this much information within a single day.
– I exchanged some social conversation back when I was cooking in preparation for the banquet. It was at that time that I learned various things.
Her ability to gather information was terrifying.
Eiji had heard about gathering information from idle gossips inside a village, but it seemed like it wasn’t a lie.
Having experienced various aspects of that till now, Eiji felt the fearsome nature coming from idle gossips.
The time when he presented the ring to Tanya spread inside the village within the same night.
They would be congratulated and teased by the villagers.
Even when he introduced the Chinese-styled iron pot, orders for it poured in from the housewives throughout the whole village. After that, he wouldn’t be able to make anything else besides the pot for a while.
Because it’s said that the bad rumors are easy to be spread, Eiji engraved that fact into his heart.
– Eiji-san, what are your plans for today?
– First, I’ll take the newcomers for ore mining, and then, I’ll probably go make a round inside the village to see how the development is progressing.
– First fields, then a watermill, and the barn….When do you intend to return?
– I would like to return around the time the rooster crows.
Besides the sundial, the crow of a rooster could also serve as the replacement for measuring time.
The rooster crows three times a day, and the interval between each crow is fixed.
At Eiji’s words which were usually informing of his late return, Tanya face turned gloomy. Nevertheless, there were things that one had to do piling up.
Pietro wasn’t ready to take care of jobs yet, therefore, Eiji had to do them by himself.
What’s more, it’s said that there’s usually a god residing in one’s actual place.
Eiji didn’t think about just creating and leaving his items as they are, but also inquiring the actual users for opinions so as to use them for reference.
Seeing Tanya, who was burdened, Eiji thought about wanting to compensate her.
– Please do your best in your job.
– Tanya-san too, please don’t force yourself. You need to consider the baby as well.
– Yes, I’ll have Jane-san assist me.
Eiji gently brushed her belly; he could understand that her stomach has swelled a little bit in comparison with before.
Luckily, it seemed that her morning sickness weakened. Despite so, Eiji tried to make her rest to the extent that one could say he was overprotective.
Since this village had no medical equipment, he couldn’t allow himself to ease up even for a moment.
Delivering the child will take place in their house instead of an infirmary, but because they were living together with their livestock, it meant that feces and urine were present as well.
In this village the mortality during the time of birth is unusually high.
Eiji believed that the cause of this was germs and bacteria.
Because of that, there was a need to separate the livestock and clean the inside of the house as fast as possible even if it was to gain a single day.
He also planned to gradually advance with the refining properties of the disinfectant alcohol, and have it tried out on other pregnant women during their birth delivery.
– Even if it’s for the sake of the baby, Eiji-san, you too shouldn’t force yourself.
– I’m off.
I need to walk around smoothly in order not to put any more stress on her. – He thought.
Today, it was the visitor’s first experience at the work.
So as not to cause any problems, they had to be in high spirits.
Just like the maxim ‘strike while the iron is hot’, making first impression is always considered as important.
In front of the furnace that had been designated by Eiji as the meeting spot, all the members, together with Pietro, gathered.
It was still the time in which the sun hadn’t risen yet.
As expected, they had no intention of arriving late. – He thought.
Looking out over the members’ faces, they didn’t appear to be fully awake.
Pietro was blinking with his eyes. He was probably still sleepy due to his growth period.
Dante, on the other hand, didn’t try to hide his yawning; nevertheless, his personal appearance looked neat which would indicate that he was ready.
The only one who was full of spirit was Katharina, as her eyes were brightly shining like that found in a boy.
– Everyone, good morning.
– Good morning (x2)
– You guys don’t seem to be energetic, do you? One more time. Good morning.
– Good morning!!! (x2)
Their greetings were mixed with mumbling similar to that of school students, however, Eiji made them repeat.
For instance, even if it is some son of a ruler, at least it’s better to have that person greet properly and loudly.
The world surrounding a blacksmith is harsh.
Numerous old customs among blacksmiths were the reason why many of them weren’t succeeded.
Still, if one was to properly learn about these customs in-depth, they could learn how to think properly.
Eiji wanted them to grow up to the extent of not becoming a bother.
– It seems that everyone has gathered, but have you guys brought the luggage with you?
– Yes! We have pickaxes and shovels inside the wheelbarrow, so we are thoroughly prepared!
– Why are these tools made from bronze? Don’t you have the iron ones?
– Unfortunately, because of your sudden arrival, we don’t have enough to supply all the members with. Bear with that. What’s more, there’s a reason for that.
Eiji made a wry smile.
Indeed, he should have made some more pickaxes.
Since only he and Pietro were in charge of ore mining, Eiji decided to postpone that matter.
He wouldn’t have expected for the bill to come due at such a time.
– Yes, but Eiji-san, why is it so?
– That’s right. I know that you might complain once you put them in practice, but, if I were to say it bluntly, it’s for the sake of grasping the secret of success behind smithing, or so you could say.
– So we are already at that point?!
– Hmph, are you going to teach us that fast? Indeed, it’s suspicious.
When a pickaxe becomes worn-out, only its tip is replaced, so there’s no need to make a new one.
In the first place, were they to tell him ahead, Eiji would probably have done the necessary preparations, however, as expected, there was no way to make the tools right after yesterday.
And because Eiji had other things to do, he decided to scrape up together the bronze-made pickaxes that were lying inside the shared storage house for the time being.
The existing iron-made ones were being used for land reclamation right now.
Staring lightly at Dante, who was filled with skepticism, Eiji pulled himself together.
– Well then, I might be rushing you, but from now on I’ll guide everyone to the workplace.
– Yay! I’m looking forward to it.
– I wonder if it’s close.
– It takes around one hour by walking.
– One hour!?
Pushing the wheelbarrow with a clattering sound, they advanced forward. Because the way wasn’t paved, it was highly uneven. It wouldn’t be half as bad in case of short trips; nevertheless, if it’s a long one, it will certainly have an impact on their whole body.
Still, if one was to consider shouldering such luggage, this would be far better.
But only until a rain appears.
Looking up at the sky, Eiji saw a clear blue sky above.
That was a good omen.
Only, the weather couldn’t be predicted.
And it was a suitable weather for their first job.
They walked through the forest.
Eiji led the group while clearing away the bushes in front of him using a nata.
The plants grew prominently thick.
From the leaves that were cut off, a scent of the deep forest lifted into the air.
*clatter clatter* – the wheelbarrow that kept following produced a clamorous sound.
We will need to make a transportation road from now on, probably. – He thought.
Inside villages, there were usually candidates for laying roads. Still, if one was to point out which road surface was worse, it would definitely be this side.
The wheelbarrow bounced due to tree roots and rocks.
– Everyone, please follow me slowly and fast, okay?
– Ehh, but what Eiji-san says contradicts itself.
– It might be unreasonable, but…
– If you have time to complain, please watch and learn from Pietro. Decisively choose the paths that that are in good condition, and move swiftly.
– But this is our first time.
Everyone seemed to be tired from just the attempt of reaching the destination.
However, in the end, they somehow managed to reach the place within the morning time.
Later, an earnest job of mining will be awaiting them. A job that will prove to be tough.
Translator and reference notes:
: Not sure what the author was trying to imply. Perhaps, Eiji wanted to say that he shouldn’t be reckless in his action, like by leaving things to Pietro.