Chapter 53: Assessment
An owl grabbed onto a letter as it slowly flew into the tavern called Hearthstone.
It landed on the bar at the back of the counter and placed the letter on the top of the bar.
Joshua picked up the letter on the bar and started to read it.
Five days had passed since the release of the "Beauty and the Demon", and the film's terrifying ability at the box office had gradually become apparent.
The first day, the dividend from Weissenasche Theater to Joshua could still be filled into two large chests. The second day, Sir Weissenasche had to find a special room to store the pile of gold coins almost the size of a mountain.
That scene alone had Joshua thinking about a certain dragon lying upon a pile of gold coins.
On the third day, the not so business-savvy playwright had finally smartened up as he opened a depository account for Joshua.
The depository was the precursor of this world's banking system. Under Norland's magical industry revolution had completely stimulated the growth of the economy, the moment a few intrepid capitalists had found that they had so much money that they could no longer store them at home, the depository was born naturally of out necessity.
As for how much money he had earned in these five days, Joshua did not have the time to count, but instead, he had invested all of them into this Hearthstone tavern, and also the development of the game Hearthstone.
With Joshua's financial support, within short five days, Melina had completed the remodeling and renovation of the tavern.
In fact, the first floor of this building had long been renovated. Its decor as a tavern was also fitting, so Melina only had to deal with the supply of liquor, the tables, and the kitchen at the back.
From the bar counter Joshua was at, a tavern that could accommodate at least two hundred patrons was now before him.
Unfortunately, the tavern was empty, without a single visitor, and this was a situation that had been ongoing for two whole days.
It was practically the dwarfs that would throng the taverns to drink ale and munching on roasts in Norland, and their lives are very regulated, so regulated that they only go through basically a few fixed streets on their daily commute.
And there were almost no dwarfs passing through this street.
But Joshua was not in a hurry and did not plan to do any promotions as of yet. When the arcade version ‘Heartstone' is completed, Joshua was not afraid of having no patrons.
The popular arcade scene in the early 2000s back on Earth was still fresh in Joshua's mind.
Joshua glanced at the letter brought back by the owl in his hand.
‘How to obtain a large amount of high-quality Originium Crystal. The best suitability of runes is both Order and Water, while Flames and Holy Light rank second… Owl Penpal Society Issue 173'
The title of this letter was written by Joshua, the current ‘Hearthstone' rule structure and logic engine had almost been completed, what was left was to wait for Ciri to complete the first batch of original art before Joshua edits them.
The reason that the production had proceeded so quickly was that Joshua had finally remembered that he was still a mage, and the usual means of mages to enhance their magics was through meditation.
While meditating, Joshua's mind accelerated to about two to three times faster than normal, and when he completes writing about a hundred lines of code, he found only a few seconds had passed when he opened his eyes again.
At present, the only obstacle for the birth of the Heartstone arcade was the quality of the Originium Crystal. In order to have an arcanotech device running this game, Joshua would need the support of high-quality crystals, and the prototype created by Hyrlan could no longer satisfy Joshua's requirements.
In fact, he could compensate for the lack of quality with quantity, and perhaps the largest part of the data was the original art. Hyrlan had used more than thirty runes of "The God of Flowing Waters and Healing, Vengert" to store it within the crystal. So the storage of the original art by Hyrlan was not data, rather… it was a form of magic.
The things constructed by runes were magic itself, and Joshua had only complicated the construction of these runes like how photos were stored in films in the past, and now in data.
This was the only reliable answer given by his fellow Owl penpal. Norland had a large amount of Originium Crystal veins beneath it, and the majority of the miners were the dwarfs.
It seemed like Joshua should find an opportunity to get in touch with this race.
Joshua wrote a message of thanks on the letter and handed it over to the owl. It then grabbed onto the letter and left the tavern.
Just as the owl flew out of the tavern, it welcomed its first guest since it opened its doors.
"Welcome, feel free to seat anywhere."
Melina had gone out to look for a chef, while Ynor was in school, so Joshua had made a guest appearance as the innkeeper today.
Joshua was surprised by the first guest who had graced the establishment. It was a young girl, a young girl with a very special temperament.
Joshua had seen her before. She was right beside the man that was quarreling with Sir Weissenasche back then. While she did not say a word, there was a very attractive air about her.
"What can I get you?" Joshua asked.
There were no laws in this world that prohibited minors from drinking alcohol.
She swept her sight across the somewhat deserted tavern before finally looking at Joshua.
"Excuse me, are you Joshua?"
Joshua's name was already considered famous in Norland now, while he was not as famous as Ynor who had played Belle, but according to Sir Weissenasche, many of those visiting the Weissenasche Theater had come looking for Joshua.
Joshua had given Sir Weissenasche a blanket response of not wanting to see anyone, so the latter had kept his identity secret. They only knew of him from the name that had been repeated a good ten seconds on the credits at the end of "Beauty and the Demon".
But for the young lady to directly seek Joshua out, this was the first.
Clearly she had carefully investigated Joshua's background, and he had indeed felt that someone was monitoring him lately, but it was done from afar and he was unable to get the exact location of the person monitoring him.
"Are you a friend of Sir Weissenasche?" Joshua's impression of her was from that time he saw her in the theater.
"You… You could put it that way."
The smile on Gallolie's face suddenly stiffened for a moment, but she soon recovered her elegant and calm expression.
Although she had changed into a very simple dress and hairstyle today, even so, Gallolie's appearance did not change all that much, and was enough for many in this world to recognize her identity, the ‘Flower of Farucci'.
Gallolie had always been proud of this identity of hers. Any woman would be proud of having so many admirers, and this identity was a testament to her extraordinary charm, but unfortunately… it did not seem to have any effect on Joshua.
"Please allow me to introduce myself. I am an actress in a troupe, the name is Gallolie von Donal."
You should know now! Gallolie assumed that Joshua probably had never seen her perform before, but anyone in the business of theaters would have heard of the Flower of Farucci, Gallolie von Donal.
"Joshua, at your service. I have many identities, but now I'm a propagator of culture. Is there anything you need coming here, Miss Gallolie?"
Joshua's calm reaction had Gallolie going silent for a few seconds, but very quickly she readjusted her composure.
"I would like to participate in Joshua's next… movie."
Gallolie stated her purpose in coming here. Stage play now for Gallolie was nothing but tedium and boredom/ She wanted to try out a brand new way of acting… or rather, her pride as a woman meant that she must at try to defeat that Belle!
"Ah, I see. Sure, sure, but before that, you need to go through my assessment."
Joshua was definitely going to make the next film and he was currently shorthanded. There were barely any actors under Weissenasche; with him included, there was about two to three of them.
For a wild actor to show up on a silver platter, it would be foolish for Joshua to not take her. And she was the legendary Flower of Farucci, you can never find such a good deal anywhere else!
But first, Joshua needed to test whether she had the qualities to act in the next movie.
"No matter what the assessment is, as long as it is related to performance arts, I believe I can pass it."
In addition to her appearance, Gallolie was most proud of her acting skills, and on this subject she had absolute confidence.
"Hmmm… very well. Then the first test is… can you swear?"
Joshua looked at the elegant and polite girl before him and asked.
Upon hearing the question, Gallolie kept the smile on the face but she slightly tilted her head, as if she was asking what he actually meant.
"I'm asking if you can swear," Joshua repeated.