Chapter 58: Business
"My help? You talking about the originium crystals?"
Frostaxe had been dealing with those cunning human merchants for so many years now, and then moment Joshua opened his mouth, Frostaxe immediately divined Joshua's intentions.
When a manling came looking for a dwarf, aside from hiring them to make armor or grinding gemstones, it was to purchase originium crystals.
"The production of this arcanotech machine requires originium crystals as its raw materials, if this machine were to be loaded with the complete version of Hearthstone, the quality of the originium crystals needs to be at least two grades better."
Joshua's words caused Frostaxe to fall into contemplation. He was far from being the only member of the Frostaxe Clan, and this arcanotech machine can only be used by two players at most at a time.
If he were to really bring all the dwarfs from the Frostaxe Clan over, their entire numbers will fill the place to the brim, and another ring outside.
So, a single arcanotech machine could not meet the demands of Joshua the acting innkeeper, and could not meet the needs of Frostaxe as a Hearthstone player.
"The originium crystals does not come free, you need to understand this."
Frostaxe picked up the flagon beside him and downed all of it before wiping off the stains on his beard. When he had finished the last of his flagons, that meant he was ready to leave.
"Of course. I know the rules of Norland's originium crystal market. I'm speaking to you as a purchaser, Frostaxe. I have enough money to exchange for the crystals, as long as you are willing to provide me a channel."
Joshua really had too much money to spend now. He had only used part of it to invest in the construction and renovation of the tavern. The wealth brought on by "Beauty and the Demon" in the next few weeks will be on an upward growth trend.
When Hyrlan made the machine, she had purchased the raw materials from human stores at what you would call ‘retail price'. Joshua had hoped to be able to get ‘wholesale price' from Frostaxe, as the price directly from the supplier would be the best.
"Sure, meet be before twelve o'clock tomorrow morning at 72, Ironhammer Street, no, the earlier the better! I've had enough of those younglings lollygagging about every day at the mines, and being absolute tossers who are only good at arm-wrestling!"
Frostaxe seemed to have stubbornly believed that Hearthstone, a very exciting and interesting game could cure the bad habits of the younglings in his clan.
However, Joshua had not told Frostaxe the bad habits that could be fostered by Hearthstone, habits that are far more terrible than arm-wrestling. At the very least, arm-wrestling was not addictive.
"I will head over as early as possible."
Joshua took note of the address, and after instructing Ynor to see the customer off, the elderly dwarf reluctantly glanced at the shut-down Hearthstone machine as he suppressed his urge for another game and left the tavern.
"How much crystals do you plan to buy?
Ciri held a piece of bread in hand for dinner, as she pulled a chair over and sat facing Joshua.
As a mage, Ciri knew how much the price of originium crystals fluctuates. The crystals that she used to store some simple spells like ‘Torch', those were worth less than a one silver coin.
However, for a crystal that could store multiple runes in it, the price of the crystals could go up to one gold coin each.
The cost of the prototype before Joshua was about two hundred gold coins.
"As much as I have money."
Joshua pointed to the coin slot beneath the machine. After inscribing an ‘Appraisal' rune on it, the coin slot could perfectly identity the common Norland currency.
When Joshua launches the function to purchase card packs for Hearthstone, no matter how much he spent during the early days purchasing the originium crystals from the dwarfs, he will earn every single penny back from them.
There were only a few in the world that could resist the temptation of a forty or sixty pack draw. Examples of impulsive purchases were everywhere back on Earth.
"We can head back after Melina returns. Also, Ciri, I suggest that you bring a few packets of black tea back to freshen up later."
"Give me the second half of "Leon: the Demon" and I can stay up all night!"
Ciri was wondering how can she get the second half of the script from Joshua as the tavern door was once again pushed open as Melina who was out all afternoon came back.
The old lady took off her shawl and quickly walked to Joshua.
Melina had gone out to look for a qualified person to fill in the position of the tavern's chef.
But seeing Melina's nervous expression, she seemed to had run into trouble.
"Joshua, I saw templars on the streets, they are not far away."
Melina recalled the templars she saw on the street earlier. The silver-white armor with the gold-trimmed coat of arms unmistakably belonged to the Ecclesiastical Templars of the Nation of the Holy Church.
While they had taken off their helmets on the street and did not bear any arms, merely being in Norland as tourists but Melina had a bad feeling about it.
"Why are you telling me?"
Joshua calmly looked at the businesswoman, while Melina knew that she had become a part of the cast of "Beauty and the Demon", but Melina did not know Ynor's or Joshua's true identity.
In the eyes of the elderly businesswoman, Joshua was still "Gaston the Mage" who had saved her from the clutches of the demon.
"Didn't Ynor… danced together with the demon prince in the movie? I had also appeared in it."
Melina did not doubt Joshua's or Ynor's identity. She only knew that Joshua had used some special methods to record the moments where Ynor and the beast were together. Those moments did touch Melina quite a bit, it was the feeling of ‘someone is willing to marry my daughter' sort of emotions.
Now that "Beauty and the Demon's" popularity had spread all across Norland, though, the citizens of Messai would definitely have somewhat heard of it. If anyone of them had watched the movie, they would have remembered both Ynor and Melina's looks; even if they could not purge the demons like usual, there will still be problems in the long run!
"Don't worry, this is Norland, the Capital of Magic, not Messai, the Nation of the Holy Church. Madam Melina, you just need to stay put in the tavern if you run into them." Joshua said.
"Stay in the tavern? Joshua, I have been to Messai during my younger days for business and saw how the templars conduct their business. I don't think they will sit down and talk to us nicely."
Melina glanced at the tavern, while the renovations had been completed, there was no place for them to hide or escape.
"There's no need to run, nor is there any need for you to talk to them. When the templars do come, you only need to sit down and continue to run the tavern."
The purpose of Joshua's creation of Hearthstone was not just to make money!
"Madam Melina, do you know how the dwarfs treat troublemakers in the tavern of their patronage?"
Melina shook her head. She very rarely dealt with that race.
"The answer's simple. Toss that sod out and beat him up, hard!" Joshua said.
The mages and the dwarfs were the masters of Norland, and the Ecclesiastical Templars were at most, visitors. What Joshua needed to do was to turn the Hearthstone Tavern into a dwarven turf.
That way, be it the guild or the tavern itself need not worry about those people causing trouble.