Leylin’s solemn tone immediately had Jonas on his guard. He glanced towards Ernest, and the man immediately flicked his fingers. He’d cast Nondetection and Sound Isolation.
With all the preparation done, Leylin spoke quietly, “I’ve already become a rank 7 wizard…”
“What? …. Wha– what?” Ernest’s eyes grew as round as saucers. He’d been completely thrown off his lack of reaction.
“Hasn’t it been less than a year since you broke through to rank 6?” Ernest’s expression was comical, as if he wanted to both cry and burst out in laughter.
“Oh Goddess, do you speak the truth?” Ernest’s face was on the verge of pressing into Leylin’s nose.
“In the name of the Goddess of the Weave, Mystra, I swear that all I say is true!” Leylin looked serious as he swore on the name of the goddess that numerous wizards held faith in.
The price of offending the Goddess of the Weave was that one could possibly be permanently restricted from using the Weave, rendering them a piece of trash. Leylin’s pledge was very serious, and Ernest believed him immediately.
“Heavens, what are you? A bastard son of Mystra?” This rate of advancement immediately depressed Ernest. He was still a mid-rank 9 wizard, so by the looks of it Leylin would probably catch up to him in a year or two.
It was normal to be overtaken by one’s student, but to be surpassed by a punk who wasn’t even twenty yet? Ernest grew very dispirited, almost on the verge of hiding away into a corner and drawing circles on the ground.
Meanwhile, Baron Jonas turned awkward, not getting it at all. He truly knew little about wizards, so he immediately suppressed his awkwardness to ask, “Ernest, my friend, what does this mean? Why the reaction?”
“Oh, my apologies, my friend!” Ernest flushed, and then replaced that with more fervour, “Leylin is a fifteen year old rank 7 wizard! From what I know this talent puts him among the top hundred talents of the past 300 years!”
At this point, he turned serious, “Don’t underestimate this ranking. Many of them became great wizards in the future, with some even becoming Legends…”
“...Cough cough… So…” This instantly shocked Baron Jonas. He watched his son, eyes full of disbelief.
“While I don’t have any acknowledgment from the wizard guild, it’s no problem to cast rank 3 spells…” Leylin looked towards his mentor, “If news of this gets out during negotiations, do you think Marquis Louis will back off?”
The great chances of Leylin becoming a great wizard was enough to inspire fear. After all, few high-ranked wizards in the Dambrath Kingdom obeyed the royal family. If they found out that the Faulen Family had a genius wizard, the possibility of the other side conceading was high.
Of course, the other possibility was that they would be driven into a corner, sparing no expense to eliminate Leylin so as to avoid any repercussions. This way, they would not be harmed.Of course, they might be driven to a corner and spared no expense to kill Leylin in order to take care of whatever repercussions there might be. This way, they would not be at harm.
“Well, that’s very possible, but there are also other options. After all, growth and talent don’t represent power…” Ernest warned.
“No, no! This news absolutely cannot get out. I will send down an order for everyone to keep their lips sealed!” Baron Jonas immediately understood. Even if there was a mere 0.0001% possibility, he was unwilling to risk Leylin dying.
After all, with Leylin’s talent, it would only be a matter of time before he became a high-ranked wizard if nurtured well. He even had hope to become a Legend! Compared to that, the losses now meant nothing.
Seeing his father and master so resolute, Leylin could only laugh wryly and toss this thought away.
“Alright! However, Father, please allow me to train my magic in secret outside the manor in the future…”
“Training in secret…” Ernest could not understand it. Wizards weren’t the kind to practice hard like that; was there a need to abandon a life of luxury in order to train one’s will?
But watching this student of his, a 15 year old who had become a rank 7, Ernest wisely chose to shut his mouth. Leylin’s achievements would represent everything. Who knew, this method could allow him to make rapid progress.
Ernest touched his chin, feeling that he might should probably start training like this.
“Since your mentor isn’t against it, I have no opinions. Remember that you’re the future of our family, always prioritise your safety! Even if I were to lose the Faulen Island, I can’t lose you. Do you understand?” Baron Jonas warned.
“Yes!” Leylin nodded then followed up, “There’s something else, and it regards the management of the family.”
“Oh! Seems like you’re giving me a lot of surprises today!” Baron Jonas was actually extremely fatigued now, but he still rubbed at the area between his eyebrows, looking like he was listening closely.
“I think we should alter our system of giving rewards based on the services rendered at our family port.”
Leylin’s first words were already astonishing, “I noticed that this occurred because we’re too weak to protect our own territory. It’s likely that we’ll have a lot of enemies coveting our land. We need to recruit even more soldiers and Professionals to expand out power, which means we need more sources of revenue.”
“That’s easy to say, but most of the trade on these seas is taken up by Marquis Louis’ Baltic archipelago. What can we offer?” Baron Jonas smiled wryly. No noble would reject opportunities to expand their strength and wealth. He’d also explored this before, but had not gotten any gains.
“Leylin must’ve mentioned this because he has a proposal. Let’s consider it first.” Ernest was aware that this student of his always made plans before acting, and would never say anything without thinking it through beforehand. This aroused his interest.
“I’ve checked, and there are only three things that make great profits with a foundation in sea trade: slaves, sea salt and sugar,” Leylin’s eyes glinted, “The slave trade has a bad reputation and it’s been controlled by Marquis Louis. We can’t interfere with that, so I’d choose sea salt and sugar!”
“Sea salt and… sugar?” Baron Jonas scratched his hair in confusion, “But our island isn’t anything like those in the south with spices and cane sugar. Those plants can’t survive here…”
“No! I plan to buy coarse sugar, and then refine it into high-grade white sugar for sale. As for the sea salt, I’m planning to use fish floss!”
“Yes! Mash the flesh of the fish and dry it in the sun, and then use techniques to preserve it for a long time. Because there’s salt and meat, I’m sure it will be welcomed by the commoners and adventurers on the continent!”
Leylin was someone who’d travelled over from another world. He’d be foolish if he didn’t use the knowledge he gained from his previous world to gain some benefits.
Though there were differences in the physical laws of the two worlds, there were still some similarities. Concerned about the family’s strength, Leylin was trying to expand their revenue to help himself in the future. He’d long since thought this through.
While he only somewhat remembered the methods to refine sugar and create fish floss by drying them in the sun, that was alright. He was a noble! As long as he supplied them with a general idea, his underlings would make it a reality.
Though Leylin remembered a lot more as well, he’d run tests through the years and he realised that he could only build an industry around these two items, they complemented the laws of the World of Gods.
As for other techniques, it wasn’t that they could not be used, but they would destabilize the situation now. Paper would definitely be valued highly by the church of knowledge, so he could easily gain the favour of Oghma. However, he would attract the ire of the other gods, and Leylin was afraid of that.
Refined sugar and fish floss were two things that wouldn’t have as great an effect.
After Leylin explained his thoughts on this industry, Baron Jonas sank into deep thought. While he did not know about this, Leylin’s words seemed to be plausible. At the very least, Ernest beside him had eyes that were twinkling as if he had seen sudden huge profits.
“In that case, you can try that!” At the end, Baron Jonas agreed. After all, Leylin had proven with his battle achievements that he was not just a braggart. What was the harm of letting him try? At worst, it could be considered business training.
As a successor of a noble family, one might not need to know how to manage businesses, but they couldn’t afford to be cheated by businessmen.
“However, be cautious!” Jonas warned after thinking it over once more. He was still worried.
“I understand. Many thanks, Father!” Leylin stood and bowed.
In reality, he just needed to have the approval of the Baron in name. As for the people and money? Steve would probably be more than ‘willing’ to provide that.
“The banquet’s almost prepared, let’s go together. By the way, where’s your cousin Isabel?” Jonas asked suddenly at the end.
“Oh… I let her leave…” Leylin’s eyes flashed with his unhesitating answer. He still didn’t want to divulge the fact that he was establishing a pirate crew.
“Is she gone? That’s good too!” Baron Jonas nodded and did not ask more, leaving with his hands behind his back.
It was evident that he’d long since had his own conjectures on Isabel’s change. However, the situation had been urgent then, and he’d felt bad about abandoning a diligent branch member of the Faulen Family. That was why he’d said nothing then, and now that she’d left, there would now be no awkwardness between them.
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