Book 8, Chapter 108

A Game Of Numbers

“Anyway, get Macy to take you through Prince Tumen’s channels, there definitely won’t be any problems. Worst case scenario, you just sacrifice yourself and sleep with her a couple times. Who cares if she gets pregnant, the Archeron bloodline has an easy path these days. No need to worry about your body either, we have plenty of dragon penises.”

“That’s not my problem!” Richard grunted, now sweating like a pig.

“Hmm? Oh!” Nasia suddenly nodded in remembrance, “Right, you still have that ursa penis. But then again, that thing is such a low-class item, dragon will give you more strength and stamina. You’re around legends all the time, do you actually dare tell people that they’ll be swallowing ursa-enhanced penis?”

“Swallowing… isn’t… the…” he couldn’t even complete his words, his voice fading away completely.

The paladin waved him off, ignoring him entirely as she didn’t even drop a beat, “Besides, dragons are so much more virile. Don’t you know how many creatures carry dragon bloodlines? Draconians, lizardmen, dragon warlocks, dragonblood gnomes, even the stupid kobolds have dragon blood in them!”

Watching Nasia ramble on without any hint of stopping, Richard suddenly interrupted her, “Wait, how do you know about what happened between me and Macy?”

“I’m your heavenly guardian, I know everything you see and feel!”

“But… it should work the OTHER WAY AROUND!” he screamed in annoyance, finding everything incorrigible. He had no way to access Nasia’s thoughts at all, not even to communicate unless she let him. He’d come to accept that she was perhaps just independent, that their link needed both sides to open up, but now she was admitting that he was an open book for her to read.

Just who was whose summon here?

Faced with Richard’s vexation, Nasia looked at him like he was an idiot, “Just what kind of person am I?”

What kind of person was she? He didn’t KNOW! Richard thought back to when he had summoned her, when she sent all the other powerful conscients fleeing. In the end, he just sighed and moved on, “Well, I might have caused a problem with the clergy at the Millennial Empire. I’m not sure if I’ll be allowed entry again.”

“A problem with the clergy?” Nasia only sneered further, “Who gives a damn? What do you think your title is for? If I were as dumb as you, I’d have gone up to the old altar and smashed my head until it caved in.

“Listen, here’s what you do every time you go to the Church. Walk in, summon everyone, and scold them to your heart’s content. Then just choose some pretty-looking girl and have her officiate in exchange for sex. People need to work for divine grace, this is obvious!

“Don’t you understand the concept of unwritten laws? Let me tell you in divine tongue, unwritten laws. Yes, that’s it. If people are unwilling to follow along, just use your power to throw them out. They’re just peasants without divine grace, who said they’re anything but expendable? A bunch of vases meant to decorate the place is what they are, nothing more. That’s why they’re all so pretty, the only actually powerful people in any church are the Chosen.”

Richard was stunned into silence, sweat dripping from his forehead as he had no intention to interrupt her. Once she was done speaking, Nasia pat him hard on the shoulders, “Being a priestess is a cushy job, of course there are some unwritten laws. Go do whatever you want, you shouldn’t waste these chances!”

Nasia’s strike was quite hard, with every intention of pushing Richard to the ground. However, his body only shook for a moment without moving. Gasping in surprise, she suddenly cast Prisoner of War on him and brought him all the way from legend to mortal, pressing a hand on his shoulder and tripping his legs to bring him down. As he grunted in annoyance, her own mood seemed to be lifted and she lifted the curse, “So long as you have offerings, there’s no need to be worried about equipment. You’ll get a lot of things you want whenever you talk to the dragon, that’s the entire point of the title.”

The next round of explanations came very quickly. Rosie could now make most of the runes in his own arsenal, leaving him only needing to work on those at grade 4 and higher. However, he was now fast enough to craft grade 4 runes in two days. Even some simpler saint runes could be done in weeks.

Nasia ticked the grade 4 and 5 runes on the list, “These are things you need to work on. Finish them, and we can trade them in for prosperity.”

Richard nodded, but as he looked at the points required for each rune he raised a brow, “This is a huge profit.”

“About 30%, don’t worry. I’ve kept it under control.”

“That’s 30% over usual. Will people still want to exchange for it?”

“Why wouldn’t they? Everyone knows that your runes are expensive, and this will be the only place they can find some really useful item. Rare grade 4 runes, any saint runes… why wouldn’t they allow us to make money when we’re giving these to them?”

Richard nodded in amazement. Almost everything on this list was profitable, and his runes weren’t even the best investment in that regard. He just had to make some as goals to entice more people to participate.

“The offerings are a little expensive too,” he pointed out.

Nasia let out a hearty laugh, “They aren’t meant to be fair trades. Think of them as buffers that allow the participants to cash out. If they have extra points and nothing to spend them on, these offerings will do just fine. There’s also the scenarios where someone is in urgent need of a top-tier offering or two, but they can’t find any on the market. In any case, you already have a powerful title; I don’t think offerings make a difference anymore if they’re under rank 2.

“Mm, you’re not wrong. And the ranking system?”

“This is a core part of the system. People gain more accumulated points as they buy more from us, which is just the sum of all their transactions. Every level opens up a portion of goods for exchange, as well as preferential pricing. For example, you need to have spent a hundred points to reach level 3 before you can buy a grade 4 rune for the standard 300 points. Otherwise, it’ll be the full 400.”

“Ah, so that way those who enroll early have an advantage that the latecomers will want to chase after.”

“Smart!” Nasia praised, but her tone made him feel like a child, “Anyway, next is point exchange. We don’t encourage trading points, I’ve already set up a 30% tax and only half of the rest counts towards the level system even after it is spent.”

“But who’ll want to trade then?”

“Someone will need it eventually. You heard the two quarrelling over a grade 5 rune. Maybe an additional hundred points will come in handy, and they’re confident in being able to repay it or make up the debt some other way.” She suddenly slapped the table, “But we don’t encourage that. It’s best for everyone to earn their points. Now, if a black market pops up where someone redeems something and sells it to someone else, that isn’t our problem. We’re still getting our end anyway.”

Richard finally got a good grasp of this system. It was designed inside-out for the sake of profit alone, and that profit was earned before the points were even distributed. No matter how clever the participants in this system tried to behave, there would have to be people who fought hard to obtain their points. This was a game of numbers; the more that joined in, the more everyone would profit, with the lion’s share going to the one running it all.

He sighed in awe, “Did you think it up yourself?”

“I just added on a few details,” Nasia showed some rare humility, “Don’t you find the basis familiar? It’s basically just offering things to the old dragon.”

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Styles

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA