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“Demon Lord Miryuu? Don’t you mean Demon Lord Famiris‧Raritei?”
I pretended to ask calmly but Goddess-sama told me that it was Demon Lord Famiris‧Raritei who was heading for Port Kobe.
Or did Demon Lord Famiris‧Raritei change name to Miryuu?
The Demon Lord then forced the fishermen to become pirates to work for them and harass the neighboring citizens?
From the way Haru described it, the Famiris‧Raritei did not seem to be an evil Demon Lord. However, she was defeated by humans once.
Perhaps there’s a chance that the Demon Lord holds a grudge against humans because of that? As I was mulled over that,
“Ah, no no. Calling her a Demon Lord is just a metaphor, she’s actually just a Hume girl. About this tall.”
The pirate chief raised himself from his prostrating posture to a kneeling position and indicated a height of about 120 to 130cm. About Carol or Miri’s height.
“What did that Miryuu person do?”
“That Miryuu girl appeared riding a huge white wolf and crushed the pirate gangs that operated around Port Kobe.”
“The wolf could swim in the sea?”
“Yes, they apparently came over by swimming through the sea. They landed at the base of a pirate gang and — that pirate gang was completely crushed. Although there weren’t any deaths, because of the traumatic event, the former pirates all lamented the transiency of life and abandoned the life of the sea and set off on a pioneering journey to create new villages.”
“Eh, doesn’t that mean that Miryuu is a good person?”
“Not at all! Pirates seem to be villains at first glance but to us fishermen, they are a necessary evil. You might not be aware but fishery dispute is inherent in our business and especially at sea with fishing boats from other countries, disputes happen all the time. However, by paying the pirates protection money, they will protect us from the fishing boats from other countries. Not only fishing boats, even merchant ships can benefit from the protection against pirates who claim the territory of other towns or countries. As long as we don’t have that protection, we can no longer fish at ease. That’s why we became pirates, to fill in for that lost security —”
“Then, does that mean you all became pirates in the name of justice?”
“There’s also the part where those pirates normally boss others around and snatch goods from unauthorized merchant boats so we thought that we could live easier lives. Now that the other pirates were no longer around, we thought that it was our chance… we lost ourselves to the temptation.”
“So that’s when you attacked my ship. I do sympathize with you guys a little but I can’t turn a blind eye after all — by the way, if we let that Miryuu to her own devices, won’t she annihilate the pirate gangs of other towns and countries? Then, without the danger of other pirates attacking the merchant ships, you guys can just create a Fishing Union and resolve all the territorial disputes among the fishermen.”
“That won’t happen. I don’t know what goes on in that Miryuu’s mind but she won’t move from the pirate hideout near Port Kobe. The ban on the shrimp fishing for the Shijimon Shrimp happens in another 3 days.”
That’s a shrimp I’ve never heard of. If Carol was with me, she would probably have told me what kind of shrimp it was.
“We fishermen living in Port Kobe earn about half a year’s worth of money from the once a year Shijimon Shrimp fishing. Every year during that time, we will get into a fishing dispute with the neighboring town Port Ithaca but because the pirates of Port Kobe and those of Port Ithaca keep each other in check, we can somehow secure half of the Shijimon Shrimp fishing ground. However, with the Port Kobe pirates gone, that fishing ground would be completely snatched by the people from Port Ithaca and we Port Kobe fishermen will not survive. We tried to borrow your ship only for the sake of increasing the number of pirate vessels so that we can intimidate the opponent.”
He said ‘borrow’ but he was clearly trying to steal it.
“Haa… well, good luck.”
It looked somewhat troublesome.
Okay, ignore it ignore it. Let’s assume they escaped because I forgot to watch them — or that was my plan but now all the pirates pleaded to me,
“Please! Even if it’s just for this fishing season, please pretend to be a pirate and help us fishermen!”
“Why should I do that —”
“Please! I beg of you, please help us.”
All the pirates were crying.
”… I’ll discuss with my companions. Since I don’t have any guarantee that everything you guys said was true after all. Also, guide us to Port Kobe.”
After I said that, the pirates all had smiles on and once again worshiped me.
I returned to the cabin and called Carol out.
I confirmed the jobs of the pirates and there weren’t any with combat-oriented jobs so there was no need to worry about them attacking Carol.
“Shijimon Shrimp huh? They are the highest grade of shrimps. Normally, they live between the crevices of rocks at the depths of the ocean and are impossible to catch but once a year, they migrate to relatively shallower places to lay eggs during the spawning season. The fishing will be done during the half a day period after the Shijimon Shrimp finish laying their eggs and start migrating back to the ocean. What they said about them earning half a year’s worth of money from that one day was not a lie and the Shijimon Shrimp caught by Port Kobe will be sold to the world by merchant ships while those caught by Port Ithaca will be consumed solely within the Western Continent. Due of that, the transportation fee involved in the sale of those shrimps coming from Port Kobe when sold to other continents increases the price of it, causing rumors that the shrimps from Port Kobe are of higher quality than those from Port Ithaca to spread, much to the displeasure of Port Ithaca, resulting in the constant skirmishes called fishing disputes between the two ports — that’s what Carol has heard.”
“But we have to meet up with Haru as soon as possible.”
“Ichino-sama, most likely we can only meet up with Haru at Port Kobe after the fishing season for Shijimon Shrimp is over. We need to take a scheduled ship from Port Ithaca to travel to Port Kobe. Port Kobe is a called a solitary island isolated on land after all, with transport to and from the port being extremely inconvenient.”
“Why is there a town in such a place?”
“Because the sea around Port Ithaca is shallow so large vessels can’t enter.”
… Carol really knows everything.
The pirates were also nodding to the explanation from Carol.
“Then why can’t Haru and the others come to Port Ithaca?”
“That’s because the scheduled ship route is through the Shijimon Shrimp fishing site. To make sure the Shijimon Shrimp will feel safe to surface, there will be no scheduled ships a week before the spawning season.”
“What about sailing directly to Port Kobe with our ship?”
“During this period, the entry to the fishing site is prohibited by law so if we are discovered, our ship might be confiscated or even worse, there is a possibility that we might be imprisoned…”
I could tell from Carol’s expression that she did not recommend it.
In other words, the earliest Haru and the others could come to us would be after 3 days.
“Also, I think I should say this but to Peddlers, it’s also true that pirates are not necessarily evil. I do feel that they went too far by trying to snatch the boat without letting us speak but we also are at fault for sailing without a permit. We were sailing with very little crew so they might have thought that we were smuggling goods. To pirates, smuggler ships are like mountains of treasure. Most smuggling ships are managed by pirates too so by attacking them, they can also snatch power from other pirate organizations.”
The pirates nodded countless times as Carol spoke. Well, it’s true that normally there won’t be so little people working on a ship. In other words, they thought that I was a smuggler who broke into their territory thinking that the pirates of Port Kobe were gone. Well, nevertheless, I still don’t think that warrants their behavior.
“Until the fishing season is over… okay? Let me say this first, I will not become your ally to destroy the pirates from Port Ithaca nor will I assist you to monopolize the fishing site. I don’t intend to act like an actual pirate. Also, once everything is over, you guys will promise me to not become pirates again.”
“Of course, that is more than enough!”
“Also, you guys will promise me to not perform piracy again. Once the fishing is over, sign an agreement to prepare for next year. Work with the people from Port Kobe.”
“That is not up to us alone. It will depend on what everyone thinks —”
And so I glared at them with murderous intent as they tried to object.
“We will, of course, convince them!”
Thus, although it was supposed to be a pirate extermination, I ended up having to pretend to be a pirate.
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