With Sophia and Regis’ guidance, it was decided that we would set up a place to discuss business with the head of the Sfir family, Carlos-san.
We were in the office of the Sfir family. I was facing Carlos-san across the desk. At his side, stood Regis.
“I understand your story. To be honest, I am surprised that you are under such circumstances. Would you mind if we go back through what you’ve told me?”
“Yes. Of course.”
“First of all… I knew you were the child of a mistress, but is it true that you are isolated outside of the main house?”
“Yes, that’s true.”
“And you are shunned by your own family?”
The moment I nodded, I could see Carlos’ blue eyes fill with dismay.
Well that makes sense. I’m someone that’s trying to marry his daughter. The reason for the marriage would be to strengthen ties with the Grances family. So if the person marrying his daughter is someone treated so poorly, the meaning to the marriage would be very thin.
……Would it have been better for me to hide the truth?……No, if I lie here then it wouldn’t be fair. Besides, it’s too late now.
I thought that at this point any assistance would be refused, but Carlos only muttered, “I see,” after a long silence.
“The next question: I can understand the idea of wanting to use the rights to your trade as a way to negotiate. It would be more than enough to convince the Grances family, as well as the Sfir family.”
Carlos-san cuts his words there, “However -,” he then looked towards me as to not miss any of my reaction.
“Is there really a way to create this trade.”
A piercing stare. The pressure I feel from his gaze is fitting of the head of a noble family.
I matched Carlos’ gaze.
“Can you mass produce sugar in this region?”
“I’m sorry, sugar can only be made in low temperature areas.”
Disappointment appears on Carlos’ face. That’s why, in order to show him that his disappointment was premature, I gently lifted the edges of my mouth to show a meaningful smile.
“Well, as sugar beets only grow in cold regions, cultivation in the warmer regions of the Grances and Sfir territories would be impossible.”
“What are you trying to say? Are you planning to produce them somewhere else and transport them here?”
“No. I know of a different crop that can produce sugar and grow in warmer areas.”
“….What? Is there really such a thing?”
“Yes, without a doubt.”
“That means that you could mass produce sugar exclusively. If that is the case, that would be more than enough to be used as a bargaining chip. If you can do that your freedom would be assured. But…If this information is genuine, why don’t you trade with the Grances family directly?”
“That’s because if I were to do something that would get me renown, Caroline would never allow it.”
“Hmm. Certainly, that logic makes sense…”
If Carlos truly believes me so far, that would be amazing, but I can’t fully trust him yet. Well it’s not like I’m lying, so for now I’ll talk openly with him.
“As sugar becomes cheaper, you will be able to sell a wide range of sweets including pudding.”
“Pudding…….Oh, that sweet thing with a strange texture. That was certainly delicious, but I’m sure something like that wouldn’t be able to be stored for very long.”
“Eh? Well, yeah that is true.”
Even if it were stored in a refrigerator, several days would be the max it would store. In this world it would be normal to store it at room temperature, therefore, a day would be the limit…but why does Carlos know such a thing?
“Actually, I was considering selling it, there was some interest, but I gave up because it could only store for a day.”
He was trying to sell it? No, I guess there’s no problem with that. It’s not like I invented pudding and there are no trademarks or patents in this world….Well, I guess it’s fine.
“Pudding does not do well in the heat, but I know recipes for other sweets that would be safe to store for a few days. So I think that it will not be a problem to sell these sweets, and even if the sweets are not able to be stored for long, if we open a store in a large city, we can sell them there.”
“If all of that is true, it’s honestly frightening how much this could be worth.”
Carlos went silent, seemingly deep in thought. I turned my eyes to Regis who had been standing off to the side, listening to my story since the beginning.
“What do you think after listening to my story?”
“I can’t answer because I do not have any knowledge of business, but……Sophia ojou-sama is fully trusting of Leon-sama.”
Oh, this is good. Sophia is able to read people’s true intentions, so this will prove more than anything that I’m not lying.
Carlos seemed to think the same way and he appeared to soften his attitude.
“Leon-kun. I’d like you to confirm, but you’re saying it’s okay for me to have full control of this business?”
“Of course. Because I will be relying on the Sfir family, for things such as manpower and funds, I have no complaints as long as I can secure my freedom.”
“Well, one more confirmation then, you said that you want freedom, does that mean you don’t want to marry Sophia?”
Ugh. That’s right. Even if I’ve talked with Sophia, it’s meaningless unless I also talk to Carlos. I haven’t thought of any excuse, this is so awkward!
“Well, that is….Umm……”
“Do you dislike Sophia?”
“Sophia is a really good girl! It’s fun to be with her, but we’re both still just children, it’s impossible to consider something like marriage…”
“If so, would you have any complaint to becoming my adopted son?”
“Well, uhh …I don’t mind…but…”
“Okay, I understand. I’ll look to advancing talks to make that happen.”
Eh, just like that?…..Really?
“Now then, there’s still some minor arrangements -“
Without any more concern for me, the rest of the conversation went off without a hitch.
Then, the discussion with Carlos-san ended quickly. With this I was pleased that I was able to find a way to gain freedom and I returned to the Grances house — feeling at ease.
“- Leon, you are to be detained immediately.”
These were Caroline’s ruthless words that greeted me at home.