Under the Oak Tree - Chapter 102
Chapter 102 – Belongingness (1)
On the wide board with black cloth were roots of several uncommon plants, bottles of unknown powders and thin branches haphazardly piled up. To an untrained eye, who knew not what these were for, it would be nothing more than a heap of trash.
Ruth quickly jumped off his horse and diligently scrutinized the items one by one.
“Are these all herbs?”
Hebaron, who had been haggling all the way behind him, also poked his head out as he couldn’t overcome his curiosity. Instead of answering, Ruth called up a man who was trimming the herbs in the corner.
“I would like to buy 20 Segals (100 grams) of all kinds, what’s the price?”
“1 Derham for 10 Segals.” A merchant replied with a generous smile on his face. “These are precious herbs of good quality, and the price is pretty high. If you buy all kinds, you have to pay for 40 Derham.”
“Can I pay for it in Liram?” Ruth asked.
“Of course! I’ll get the scale.”
She watched as the merchant carefully laid the roots with dried leaves on a brass scale. Ruth, who had a penchant for carrying miscellaneous things in a small pocket, took the pocket out and held out four silver coins. The merchant then weighed the silver on the scale.
Looking at the goings-on, Max whispered by the wizard’s ear. “Why.. is he we-weighing it?”
“To make sure it’s real silver.” Ruth then added. “Recently, there has been an influx of fake currencies. We have even caught people who grind their coins little by little to make new money.”
“G-grind the co-coins?” Max was astonished.
“When you put money in a basket and shake it, the gold dust falls off. They collect them and make another gold coin. If you repeat it over and over, the coins will wear out a lot more and you will see a difference in weight. But I’m not worried. My coins are almost new.”
He took some coins out of his pocket and held them for her to see. The edges were definitely sharp.
Satisfied, the merchant pocketed the coins and took out 8 Derham to check their weight, while Ruth closely watched the weighing needle.
“The wizard has always been stingy.”
Hebaron booed, but Ruth didn’t even blink.
“I’m just meticulous.” He proudly declared, and went to the other side of the street.
This time around he began bargaining, with a man who seemed to be a mercenary, over a stone the size of a rock. While the mercenary insisted he would accept no less than 15 Liram saying he almost died to get the mana stone, an adamant Ruth snorted and quibbled that 10 Liram was enough. In the end, after a long battle, Ruth bought five mana stones for the price he wanted.
Meanwhile, Max was looking at things on display from the other vendors. A palm-sized dagger with colored beads, a small piece of wood in the shape of an animal, a belt with embroidery, a bronze brooch and a rope with varying colors of threads.
“Wha-what is this?” Max, who looked at the colorful rope with curious eyes, and asked questions to the side.
Ruth, however, was busy haggling with another merchant at a distance. She was embarrassed and tried to stand up from her seat when she heard a blunt voice.
“It’s an accessory for the sword.”
Max turned her head in amazement. Hebaron was bending over and fiddling with the ornaments she was looking at.
He continued, not once lifting his gaze. “Many adventurers believe that they can be protected by spirits if they have it. You tie it up here.”
He pointed to his own sword on the waist. A sturdy-looking leather sword was bound with ornaments made of twisted colored cloth. She alternated between Hebaron and the accessories with an awkward face.
“I ha-have never seen it be-before. Ri-riftan doesn’t wear th-these accessories, so….”
Riftan’s entire ensemble was rather brusque and crisp like the man himself. So it was very obvious that Max, who had only seen that one man in close quarters, didn’t know of these beliefs that seemed to be rife among the general masses.
“The leader thinks this is useless. His pride is too strong to dwell on superstitions.”
The knight’s words were a blend of sarcasm and affability.
Max relaxed and smiled a little. “If it’s Riftan… I t-think so.”
“But if Madam gives it to him, he might wear it.” He asked in a calm voice, scratching his wavy back hair. “Would you like to pick one?”
Max blinked up at him. The unexpected favor flooded her in both embarrassment and joy. “W-wouldn’t it be expensive?”
“How much could this thing be?”
Max blushed at his absurd remarks. She didn’t want to act stupid. She chose a short rope of red, green and orange from among the ornaments hanging. Hebaron handed a coin to the merchant without asking about the price.
“That’s enough money of course.”
Judging from the merchants’ widened eyes, he seemed to have paid much more than the original price.
“I wi-will return it as s-soon as I get back to the castle.”
“It’s alright. I’m not a petty little man like a wizard who brings one coin.”
He shrugged and turned to Ruth. Max picked up her accessory and hurried after him. It crossed her mind that she had not even thanked him yet, but the man had already cut off her attention and was grumbling to Ruth for how much longer he was going to procrastinate. Ruth put the purchased goods in a sack and made an annoying gesture.
“Yes, yes, sir. Let’s go back.”
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Ying and Livy’s current translations (from left to right)
Living as the Villainess Queen
Under the Oak Tree
The Duke’s Imposter Sister
Raising the Child of the Male Lead Boss
Heavenly Divine Doctor: Abandoned Concubine