Chapter 111 Second Alandal (2).
Chapter 111 - Second Alandal (2)
Woojin looked at his mini-map and saw a orange colored dot not too far away from the Domain's border.
“What is it? Is it a person?”
He got close enough to see the presence of bipedal creatures. Woojin got closer and realized they weren't humans. They were one of the Beast race. There were of the Ho-in race.
The Wyvern landed as it created a gust, and Kiba's Phantom Wolf appeared not too long after.
[Ggoo-roo-rook. What is your business with Alandal?]
Kiba grabbed his axe, asking in a threatening manner. One of the Ho-in with a large body stepped forward.
“Please let us meet the owner of this Domain, oh Undead Warrior.”
Woojin jumped off the Wyvern's saddle and stepped forward.
“I'm the owner here.”
“I beg of you. Let my family and I stay briefly in your Domain.”
Woojin looked over the party. They were a 8 membered Ho-in family. There were 5 males and 3 females. The man speaking from the front seemed to be the head of the family.
“All right. I'll allow it. However, I have a condition.”
Their faces brightened when Woojin assented, but their faces quickly hardened. Their shadowed faces indicated that they had gone through a lot of hardship.
“What's the condition?”
“I would like to hear your life story.”
It wasn't a difficult request.
“If that's the request, I'll agree to it a hundred times over.”
Woojin turned to look at Kiba.
“Bring them to the lord's castle.”
He left them to follow after Kiba. Woojin returned first on the Wyvern. Woojin landed on the castle's empty lot. As if she had been waiting for him, Bibi came out to greet him.
“Master. Interlopers are here in our Domain.”
Since she had the occupation of managing the lord's castle as the Butler, she was already aware of the situation.
“I know. Get ready to greet the guests.”
“Heh heh. Then you'll have to recharge some of my Energy.”
“Nevermind. I'll do it myself.”
Bibi's cheeks puffed out and she kicked at the floor. Woojin smirked as he opened the Dimensional Store. He searched for a suitable house for the family of the Ho-in Race.
<Second Story Hut.> - 300p
<Refugee Resettlement Set> - 150p
The building was cheaper than he thought, so Woojin was lost for words. What the hell did Bibi use 10,000 Energy on?
When Woojin purchased the house, the mini-map grew larger like a 3D image Board. When Woojin chose an appropriate location, the building suddenly rose up from below.
“…This is quite fun?”
It felt like a strategy simulation game he used to play in the past. The building was built and the items were manufactured. Woojin dragged the Refugee Resettlement Set into the house, whereupon various items poured out.
There were beds, furnitures, cooking utensils, and even food ingredients.... It was enough items to live comfortably for several days.
When everything was put in place, the mini-map disappeared.
“Chet. Master now knows the joy of shopping.”
Her lips protruded by a foot. He ignored her mumbling and went to greet the family of the Ho-in race, who was entering through the open castle gate.
“You'll be staying here.”
The family of the Ho-in race looked at the house pointed out by Woojin and their eyes widened in surprise.
“You didn't have to show us such a generous treatment...”
They've wandered around various Dimensional Domains, but they've never been treated this well. They had only expected permission to be able to stay in this Domain.
“My name is Soo-soonahk. I would like to repay your kindness by giving you this.”
The man of the Ho-in race, who was named Soo-soonahk, pushed forward a small Bloodstone.
When Woojin took it, a message indicating the stone could replenish 50p of Energy popped up.
‘So this is how I can raise the Dungeon Energy.’
Woojin returned the Bloodstone.
“I just want to hear the story of your adventures.”
“I have no objections to that.”
Soo-soonahk was touched by Woojin's kindness. His attitude indicated he would answer any question asked by Woojin.
“Let's head in first before I listen to you.”
Woojin entered the hut. Soo-soonahk and his family followed after him. The sight of the comfortable house made everyone from the Ho-in race have an expression of joy. Woojin waved at the little ones from the Ho-in race.
“There is a second floor, so you can go look at it.”
They nodded their head as if they were embarrassed. Then, the small Ho-in children ran up the stairway. If it hadn’t been for the tiger ears on their head, they would have looked like humans. They were very cute.
Soo-soonahk was overwhelmed, but he obediently sat in front of Woojin. Soo-soonahk’s wife felt awkward within the house. She saw several utensils in the kitchen, so she started to make some tea.
“What are you curious about?”
“Mmmm. Everything. First, how did you get here?”
Soo-soonahk understood what Woojin was curious about, so he nodded his head. He was puzzled as to why this lord didn't act overbearing and coercive. It seemed he was a new lord who had gained his Domain not too long ago.
“How long have you had this Domain?”
“It's been a day.”
Soo-soonahk nodded his head as he started to speak.
“Before we came here, we stayed at a Domain ruled by an Orc Chieftain named Ort. With the Dimensional Battle on the horizon, he levied a severe tax. This is why we were forced to become wanderers after becoming refugees.”
Basically, they had been residents of a different Dimensional Domain.
“Did you see the buffaloes outside? Did they come from a different Dimension too?”
“Yes. The boundaries of a Domain can be moved to anywhere.”
In the future, it seemed monsters would be drifting into his Domain too.
“How many Dimensional Domains are there?”
Soo-soonahk shook his head from side to side at Woojin's question.
“They are too numerous to count.”
“All right. You talked about taxes before. Is it imposed on the residents of the Domain?”
It seemed it was a sensitive topic. Soo-soonahk's expression darkened. He even spoke in a slightly guarded tone. His voice became a little bit more stiff as if this topic was very important to him.
“The residents living in a Domain can be taxed.”
This man had given him a Bloodstone, so he surmised the taxes were paid with Bloodstones.
So how did the residents of a Domain acquire the Bloodstones? Did they catch the monsters that naturally drifted into the Dimensional Domain? Or did they farm it somehow?
Woojin thought up several methods that might answer the question. However, it was easier to just ask.
“How are the residents of the Domain able to pay their taxes?”
“We go out and hunt. We earn it that way.”
“Ah. Is that so.”
It seemed hunting was the primary method. Still, wouldn't that mean a significantly more amount of monsters drifted into the Domain compared to the number of residents? The numbers didn't add up.
“Does the number of monsters drifting in increase as the number of residents increase?”
“What? The bigger the Dimensional Domain, the more beings would drift in, but they are all drifters.”
It seemed the size of the Domain was important. As the size of the border increases, there was more contact with other Dimensional Domains.
Still, this didn't answer his question.
“Then where do you hunt?”
“If the lord opens the Gate, the residents will go hunting. They'll gather the Bloodstones, and those Bloodstone will be given as tax.”
Woojin's expression hardened when Soo-soonahk asked a question.
“If you became a lord yesterday, then you should have at least one Gate. Which world are you connected to?”
Soo-soonahk spoke as if this was an important issue. It was rare for him to ask a question to Woojin.
“It is a place called Earth.”
“Ah… I've heard rumors about that place. It is mainly occupied by humans... Humans are very easy prey.”
Soo-soonahk was showing expressing his happiness.
It was very important as to where the Dimensional Domain's Gate was connected to. It was directly linked to the safety of the residents of the Domain.
A large Domain possessed several Gates, and one could pick and choose which hunting ground one wanted to go to. However, the small Domains only had one or two gates. So one had to be more prudent to which world the Gate would connect to.
He had heard about this place called Earth from the rumor mill. He heard it was a difficult to hunt, but most of the planet was populated by humans. It was a relatively an easy place to hunt.
“If the resettlement fee is low, it makes me want to settle here.”
Soo-soonahk's words plunged Woojin deeper into his thoughts.
‘The 30 day Protection Period.’
It was the time when one's Dimensional Domain and Dungeon was protected from other Dimensional Domains.
If he earned a new Dungeon, he guessed another 30 days of protection would be given to him. No, it was almost a certainty.
Woojin closed his eyes.
Why do monsters pour out?
They came out to hunt humans. Conversely, humans hunted them down.
There were a lot of ways for a Dimensional Domain to gain Energy. One could absorb the Energy after killing the adventurers, who come to hunt in the Dungeon. One could also collect a toll from the residents of the Domain to allow them to hunt. The resulting gain was collected through taxes. This was the general idea.
One could also go to war with a different Dimensional Domain, but this method method carried huge risks.
“I won't open the Gate.”
If he wasn't going to open the Gate, then how was he going to gather the taxes? When the Domain's Energy decreases, it meant the forces the lord could dispatch also decreased. There would be a restriction on what the lord could do, and in the end, another lord would take away the Domain.
“Earth is my home planet.”
“Aigo. This... I'm sorry.”
Soo-soonahk was so surprised that he got up from his chair, then put his head to the floor.
Race held no significance in the Dimensional Domains. Humans hunted humans. Even Elves and Orcs, who were known to hate each other, made alliances.
However, one's home planet always held a special significance to everyone. Soo-soonahk made a mistake with his words. Even he, who was an Inter-dimensional refugee, missed his home planet.
“Well, it's all right. Go rest up.”
“Then I'll see you next time.”
When Woojin stood up, the nervous Soo-soonahk spoke.
“There is something I have to say to you, lord.”
“What is it?”
There was no benefit in pissing off the lord during his stay here. If he denied their sojourn, they'll have to leave for another location again. It would be a very dangerous journey.
Not all Dimensional Domain had a rational lord like Woojin.
“If hunting outside the Dungeon is not an option, there are other ways to replenish the Dungeon.”
The profit wasn't significant, but there was another method.
“How do I do it?”
“You can cultivate the Blood Flowers, or you can grow monsters….”
Woojin nodded his head, when he heard Soo-soonahk's story.
‘Basically, I have become a manufacturing facility.’
He understood it now.
He could focus his investment into his military facilities to increase his fighting power. Then he could either hunt or pillage for the Bloodstones. Or he could invest in manufacturing facilities to produce the Bloodstones.
Depending on the inclination of the lord, the direction of the Domain's development changed.
Of course, if he invested a lot into his military forces, he would be able to make quick profits, and he'll be able to progress quickly. The latter choice would just make a Domain be ripe for the picking unless the Domain had enough defensive forces.
‘I'll have to conduct further research.’
He had to find the right balance between growth and stability. Furthermore, he had to decide what was important to him as the master of the Domain. The lord's tendency changed the direction of the growth.
Woojin asked another question before he left the house.
“Since you carry around bloodstones, can you use it at the Store?”
Soo-soonahk answered as if the answer was obvious.
“Of course. If you have a shop at the lord's castle, we can buy the items with our Bloodstones.”
“Mmm. You misunderstood me. I meant the Dimensional Store.”
Soo-soonahk became surprised, and he vehemently shook his head from side to side.
“It is only possible for the lord to use it.”
Woojin nodded his head.
He had wondered why it was possible for him to build a grocery store and butcher store. It existed for the residents and the travelers. These services would become the main source of income for the Domain especially if it was taxed.
‘I have a lot of things to do.’
He had a tight schedule if he wanted run the Dimensional Domain properly.
The 30 day Protection Period that was given to him didn't feel like a long enough time. If he didn't prepare properly, he'll lose his Domain to a different lord.
Woojin exited Soo-soonahk's borrowed house and headed towards the castle where his throne was located at.