Chapter 284: Preparing Goods [Volume 4 – Perpetual Conflict]
After having breakfast the next day, Qianye headed toward Darkshore City’s most thriving trade street and arrived at Xinglong Trade Company as per the inn owner’s recommendation. This company specialized in the various products of Mount Pugou, and among them, the Fragrant Deer Bone Powder was one of its most important commodities.
Qianye had just entered when a sales clerk walked up, bowed, and asked with a smile, “Greetings! How may I be of service?”
The sales clerk was quite young and clad in a well-fitting uniform of tastefully chosen materials. Not only were his appearance and bearing impeccable, but his strength was also at an acceptable level. A sales clerk with rank three combat strength would, indeed, be inconceivable in back in Evernight Continent.
There were seven or eight such personnel on this floor of the Xinglong Trading Company, and all of them were handsome men and women. In contrast, Qianye was dressed in the pre-made clothes he had just bought—his warrior’s coat and tactical jacket were also somewhat damaged—add to that the alterations he had made to his appearance, he now looked just like an ordinary young man. Just from the outward appearance, these sales clerks were much cleaner and neater than him.
Qianye could be considered the odd one out among the customers of the Xinglong Trading Company. Because the company mainly focuses on large-scale trading, the ones to usually frequent it were stewards of noble houses and peddlers above the medium scale. Rarely, if ever, would a lone hunter appear.
Qianye’s eyes swept over the display cabinets in the hall and said, “I want some deer bone powder. Also, if there are other special products related to cultivation, introduce them to me.”
There was some faintly discernible contempt in the eyes of this young sales clerk. But, at least, his outward attitude was still acceptable. “This young master, our Xinglong Trading Company normally doesn’t engage in retail. For instance, the sales of Fragrant Deer Bone Powder begins at three boxes, each of them 100 grams in weight and 100 gold coins in price.”
300 gold coins was a significant amount to a solitary hunter. At this moment, the gazes of the rich merchants in the hall all fell upon Qianye, all of them eager to watch an interesting show.
This was Zhao clan territory where those with grand origins calmly suppressed those of inferior status. One had to shame these country folk and let them know the immensity of the heaven and earth in order to be considered competent.
“Three boxes at least… hmm…” Qianye calculated the space in Andruil’s Mysterious Realm.
The young sales clerk smiled and said, “If you have no intention to buy that many, you can visit the nearby Shore Street. There are many retail stores there that may be able to satisfy your needs.”
The words sounded perfectly polite; he had even helped the customer with directions. The issue was that Shore Street was a trade street targeted at outsiders where they sold inferior goods for cheap prices. It could be said that the place was a black market intended to trick outsiders. A major store like Xinglong, on the contrary, wasn’t quite popular among newly arrived hunters and adventurers because there was basically no contact between the two groups.
The young sales clerk’s words seemed mild on the surface but contained a sharp edge within. This served as welcome entertainment to the customers within the hall. In their eyes, strangers should go to places that best suited them.
Qianye sensed the faint malicious intent in his surroundings. Despite his smile and modest demeanor, this young sales clerk before Qianye made him rather uncomfortable. However, he couldn’t find any reason to flip out either.
After a moment of silence, Qianye said, “I’m indeed unprepared to buy too many. Let’s go with three crates then.”
“T-Three crates?!” The young sales clerk’s expression froze. The other customers in the hall also found it quite difficult to believe their ears.
Every crate of deer bone powder contained 100 boxes and was valued at 10,000 gold coins. Three crates would amount to a colossal batch of goods that even a major trading company have difficulty digesting.
The young sales clerk reacted swiftly—he quickly adjusted his expression and said with a professional demeanor, “Please follow me to the upper floors where you’ll be received by our manager.”
Qianye followed the young sales clerk to the third floor and sat down within a top-grade lounge.
Moments later, a chubby middle-aged man quickly walked into the lounge. He sat down in front of Qianye and said with a smile, “Your humble servant is called Wang Youyuan. Young noble, although barely, we are indeed capable of putting together three crates of goods. It’s just that the amount is simply too great. We’ll require two days for the transfer and preparation.”
Qianye nodded. “Time isn’t a big issue. I can wait.”
Wang Youtuan sized up Qianye and said, “On our Xinglong Trading Company’s prestige, I can guarantee a timely delivery of goods. May I check the funds on your side? Or perhaps you have a certain family to vouch for you?”
Wang Youyuan’s request was reasonable. This large-scale transaction would turn into a comical waste of time and manpower if one party couldn’t deliver the goods or money when the time came.
There was no doubt about the prestige of Xinglong Trading Company. Solitary hunters like Qianye usually paid up front, but 30,000 gold coins was a significant sum. It would require a sizeable box even if the amount were converted to black crystals.
“I don’t have that much cash on me,” Qianye spoke the truth.
Wang Youyuan’s smile froze momentarily; he slowly rubbed his plump hands while waiting for the follow-up words. One would need to have a considerable ability if he wanted to make fun of the manager of a Zhao clan trading company.
Qianye brought out a small box from his pocket and pushed it across the table. “Can we use this as a payment for the goods?”
Wang Youyuan’s expression was somewhat doubtful as he received the palm-sized metallic box. He opened it and immediately inhaled a breath of cold air. “Mithril?!”
Within the box was a piece of silvery metal the size of an egg, flowing with a gentle radiance. It was actually mithril! And it appeared to be of the highest purity. According to the current market price, this piece of mithril was more than enough to pay for the goods. They would even have to pay Qianye two to three thousand gold coins.
Wang Youyuan held the box in both hands as he said with a stern expression, “I’m unable to set a price for such a valuable item on the spot. Let’s do it this way since the Deer Bone Powder will also take some time to transfer. Please return three days later and I’ll invite a specialist to appraise the mithril. What do you think of this?”
Mithril, belonging to the class of top-grade tactical resources, rarely, if ever, circulated in the market. Even a large business like the Xinglong trading Company wouldn’t hire a specialized appraiser and would need to borrow one from another place.
Qianye understood the situation and nodded. “Very well. I’ll return in three days.” With that, he collected the ball of mithril.
Wang Youyuan’s gaze followed the little box up until it entered Qianye’s pocket. Only then did he reluctantly shift his gaze and said with a face full of smiles, “I still have to ask young noble’s name and contact details. We’ll immediately send someone to contact you after we finish preparing the goods!”
Qianye left his hotel address and fake name before leaving the Xinglong Trading Company.
Wang Youyuan saw Qianye to the door and watched as his figure disappeared. At that point, his smile vanished completely and his expression became gloomy.
The young sales clerk, who had been standing nearby him all this time, came over and whispered, “Manager Wang, are you really going to let him take that mithril away?”
Wang Youyuan glared at the man. “What else can I do?”
The young sales clerk said in a soft voice, “Trade companies have their own rules, but some rules no longer apply once he walks out of the door. Perhaps…”
Wang Youyuan frowned and said after a moment of pause, “This transaction is too big and not that easy to digest. Let’s decide after I report this to the superiors.” He wouldn’t have any disloyal thoughts about normal goods, even if it were red crystal iron. But mithril was simply too hard to come by, and such a large amount was exceedingly rare. Additionally, the recent situation was special—the Zhao clan’s demand for mithril had increased dramatically.
The young sales clerk said with a sinister smile, “Manager Wang, it so happens that my uncle is in Darkshore City these days. He can help you with certain things that are inconvenient for you.”
Wang Youyuan pondered for a moment before nodding slowly. “Very well, I understand.”
As the manager of Xinglong Trading Company, Wang Youyuan’s news channels had always been fast and efficient. So much that he had gotten wind of the slight restlessness within the Zhao clan, which was also why he cared even more about tactical resources like mithril. As for where these disturbances originated from, it wasn’t something a minor character like him would know.
West Pole City, towering over the north of the Western Continent, was built against Swallow Mountain. It was also known as the granary due to the confluence of three rivers in front of the city and was also a land many military forces would fight for.
This grand city had a long history to it. Hundreds of years ago, the leader of Zhao clan’s resurgence, Zhao Wuji, felt deeply for the declining spirits of the clan. Thus, he abandoned the rich lands of the Qin continent and moved to the Western Continent which, back then, was dominated by savage darkness.
Back in the day, Zhao clan’s territory was claimed to be a province when, in fact, it was limited to a single county. The other areas were either uncultivated lands or occupied by bandits of various races.
Zhao Wuji built the clan’s ancestral hall in West Pole City and proceeded to wage a thirty-year war. He advanced unhindered for tens of thousands of kilometers, killing enemies and claiming wild lands until he conquered the Serene Cloud and Swallow North provinces. Thus, he established the foundation of Zhao clan’s prosperity for hundreds of years to come.
Even to this day, West Pole City boasted a population in the millions with a constant flow of people passing its gates each day. The continuously operating airships in the sky were a magnificent sight to behold. This was the number one city of the Western Continent in every aspect. Even the dark race’s Fullmoon City which had been operating for thousands of years couldn’t be compared to West Pole City on equal terms.
There was a city within West Pole City built against the mountain in the northwestern part of the city. From its highest point, one could look down on the entirety of West Pole City.
This was the Zhao clan’s main camp, and with tens of thousands of people living within, it was a complete city of its own. At its center stood the Zhao clan manor with its endless array of palace halls arranged in a nine by nine structure. This was the residence of the successive generations of Zhao clan masters, the current head being Duke Chengen, the Northwestern General, Zhao Weihuang.
The nine-building layout was a symbol of one who had reached the highest of official positions. One had to know that even the imperial palace was built with 18 buildings from north to south and 12 buildings from east to west. The other three clan master residences were all built in an eight by eight layout, and not even the Zhang clan, with its four dukes, was an exception.
The Zhao clan’s extra slot wasn’t due to its strength but because of its close ties to the imperial family. Zhao clan was a relative of the imperial family, and there was no shortage of imperial consorts with the surname Zhao in the successive dynasties. And the current clan head Zhao Weihuang had taken Imperial Princess Gaoyi, a clear sign of the close relationship between the two families.
The outer buildings of the Zhao clan manor were split into two major residences and 18 auxiliary residences. The two major residences were the mansions belonging to the families of the two hereditary dukes, Duke Yan and Duke You. The 18 auxiliary residences were occupied by direct relatives and the six main branch families. As for the Zhao clan’s many side branch families and divisions, they were not qualified to enter the manor.
At this moment, a young man was sitting behind a desk and focused on reading through some documents. The study was spacious, well-illuminated, and exquisitely decorated. Outside its windows was the famous Lake Profound of the clan residence—the scenery therein was extremely beautiful.
It was clear from its central location that the study was quite important and could be said that its significance was only second to the clan master and elders. But the person sitting in such a place was fairly young. This was a rare sight among aristocratic clans.
This elegant young man was clad in loose-sleeved ancient attire, sported a head of flowing short hair, and wore a pair of square-rimmed glasses. He seemed deep in thought and would look up from time to time, revealing his beautiful, almost enchanting countenance.
At this moment, a knock rang out from the door as another young man walked in. Surprisingly, it was Zhao Junhong with whom Qianye had once fought in an intense battle. After entering, he said with a smile, “Fourth brother, are you not done yet? Eldest brother recently got his hands on a good gun and is inviting us to the front line battlefield to try it out. Do you want to go together? Now that I think of it, we four brothers haven’t fought together for a long time.”
The young man behind the desk was the youngest of the four young masters of the Zhao clan, Zhao Jundu.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
3/7 of the week. Enjoy ^_^