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“Apart from the issue with the church, there is also another matter which is related to why I came…” Xena’s gaze pierced straight into Leylin.
‘Finally, here it comes,’ He thought inwardly. He had long felt that as his profits from his two avenues of trade grew greater and greater, he would eventually attract the attention of larger organisations.
As this moment had come, his earlier alliances to protect his profits were no longer of any use. In reality, Leylin had already planned in his heart to exchange his techniques with them. He’d long since understood the rules of the game in this world, and that he could no longer maintain a monopoly by virtue of his own strength.
He was already surprised that he was able to gobble up a year’s worth of profiteering. Now, he would need to find a sufficiently powerful backer to sell his techniques to. From this point of view, the church of wealth was evidently a rather good option.
“Is it the fish floss and white sugar?” Leylin directly pointed it out.
“Yes, as well as you!” Xena’s eyes were filled with humour, “Compared to those two techniques, the person who invented them is much more worthy of our consideration. You have Midas’ touch!”
“Me!” Leylin pointed at himself, feeling a little ridiculous. Secretly, however, he was constantly on guard and a little apprehensive. It looked like he had been acting too conspicuously recently.
For now, Xena was only interested in his mind, but what if she discovered more things about him?
As he thought about it, Leylin suddenly made up his mind. After he resolved the issue with Marquis Louis, he had to disappear for a while. Otherwise, once he received the attention of even more deities, his troubles would certainly grow.
“These two techniques came about due to luck. I have always loved reading books, and discovered the invention from the writings of the ancients by chance. I’m also very thankful to my father as well, as he allowed my nonsense and even specially bought some craftsmen slaves for me…”
Leylin felt a magic undulation sweep across him, clearly trying to find out whether he was lying. Although Xena’s action was performed in secret, how could he possibly not notice it? He raged in his heart, but on the surface he did not make a single sound.
His expression made Xena rather suspicious, and as she felt the feedback from her divine spell, she grew even more confused.
‘It can’t be, he’s telling me the truth?’ Xena felt a little disappointed, but did not continue to discuss the matter of the two trades with Leylin. No matter how one looked at it, the profits from the fish floss and white sugar were absolutely mind boggling. If she could not stick her hand in these two trade rivers which were overflowing with gold, she was sure to lose Waukeen’s favour, and would be replaced with other priests of gold.
Leylin’s nature and the A.I. Chip’s adjustments were more than enough to hide information from a high-ranking priest. Looking at Xena’s crestfallen face, Leylin inwardly smiled to himself, but his expression was still as serious as ever.
“Then, let’s discuss the issue of the the two trades.”
“Say it! How many gold coins do you want to give me the techniques?” Xena said with a rich and powerful air, suppressing her emotions completely.
“The entire curing process of fish floss, as well as the can sealing method and even the skilled craftsmen can all be given to you for 100,000 gold pieces!”
For Leylin, it was necessary to mass produce things like fish floss. The greater the volume he was able to sell, the more lucrative it would be. The capital and investment necessary was enormous, and the technique was not particularly sophisticated. After a few years it was sure to be imitated, so it was better to sell it off in one go.
“100,000 gold pieces?!” Xena bit her lip.
From her view, this price was on the high side. However if skilled craftsmen and the sealing technique were included, then it was much more worth it.
The crucial point was the sealing technique that Leylin used. Xena could immediately see the advantage in using the sealing jar to preserve food for a long time. Even if it wasn’t used for fish floss, it was enough for her to make a profit.
So what if this industry needed a lot of initial investment? For the church of wealth who threw money at all their problems, that would never become an issue.
“This price is really far too high, unless you include the technique used to refine white sugar as well…” Although she had already inwardly agreed to the deal, she had a forced smile on her face, and on the surface she looked like she was moments away from throwing a tantrum.
“The white sugar purification technique?” Leylin muttered to himself. This was a different technique to the fish floss, and he was secretive about it as there were several key steps to making it.
Additionally, it did not require a big production line or much investment, and it was a business that he could continue in the long-term.
The white sugar trade brought in over half of the Faulen Family’s income, and was like an inexhaustible gold mine! As their profits grew, naturally the number of sharks that were attracted by it also grew. This was something that Leylin understood very well.
“Well?” Xena clearly seemed to understand the difference between the two techniques, and her eyes flashed in anticipation.
“This is…” Leylin’s expression looked as if he was mired in difficulty, and his fingers began to involuntarily drum on the table. Xena’s heart seemed to also throb along to the rhythmic tapping sounds.
‘Why… Why did I do that?’ Xena’s face seemed to flush red as she inwardly chastised herself.
However, Leylin looked at her softly. “The purification technique for white sugar cannot be sold to you. However, can we discuss the matters of the church of wealth?”
“The church of wealth?”
“Yes! For example, how many priests you will dispatch here, how many paladins, and other matters like that…” Leylin smiled like a crafty fox, leaving Xena feeling as if she had met the most unreasonable devil in her career.
After a while, Xena bid farewell and left, looking as if she had been driven to distraction.
“I’ll need to carefully consider your proposal!” were the words she left behind.
As he watched many priests and paladins escorting the figure below him, Leylin’s lips slowly curved into a smile.
As a matter of fact, his proposal was not complicated. It was only to allow the church of wealth to become a partner in the business, and gradually pass on the technique over three years, enough time for the Faulens to fill their own coffers.
Leylin had additionally emphasised a clause in their agreement— If Faulen Island came under attack, the church of wealth would have to send out priests and paladins to fight alongside his guards.
This was practically a request for the church’s protection. Even if they only sent out a low-ranking priest, it would be enough. After all, even Marquis Louis would not dare to declare war on the church of wealth unless he was tired of living.
Leylin had also heard several rumors which made it necessary for him to protect his own lair. Binding the church of wealth to his chariot of war was undoubtedly the safest thing for him to do.
Naturally, he would not have unrealistic expectations of the church protecting the Scarlet Tigers as well. Even if Marquis Louis wanted a truce, Leylin was not willing to agree. Without enough enemies and flesh, how could he fulfil the Devilblood Dagger’s needs and quickly advance?
‘The clause is not too harsh, and I believe that in the end, this Gold Priest won’t be able to withstand the temptation…’ Leylin’s eyes continued to flash, ‘Once the church of wealth puts down their roots here, perhaps my plans can begin…’
After returning to his villa, Leylin waved his hand at Claire and her sister, who had faces full of anticipation, “I won’t need you here for now, leave first!”
“Y-yes, young master!” The sisters had a secretly bitter expression on their faces but did not dare to say much as they meekly left the room.
“Come out!” Leylin looked towards the window sill. For a moment, it seemed as if no one was there and the window was tightly shut, without even a small crack.
However, a shadow slowly emerged from the darkness, and the outline of a curvy body could be seen. The owner of this body was a half-drow, who wore the tight-fitting clothes of an assassin and a thief. “Master!” she immediately knelt down.
“I’m afraid that your stealth is no worse off than some middle-ranking assassins!” In the World of Gods, a middle-ranked class was a formidable Professional of over rank 10. Such an assessment coming from Leylin was indeed high praise. Perhaps this half-drow had practised like she was mad after shedding her past humiliating identity, and made great progress.
Karen currently had the heavy responsibility of communicating between Leylin and the Scarlet Tigers.
“Master, we looted two more merchant ships from the Baltic archipelago this month, the estimated profits are about 5000 gold pieces. Additionally, Miss Isabel has acted according to your plan and begun to intentionally leak our whereabouts…” Karen reported respectfully.
“What about the Barbarians?”
“I have already notified them and they have promised to act when the agreed time comes.” How could Leylin not take advantage of the assistance the Barbarians could offer to recklessly fight Marquis Louis?
“Mm, even so, we would increase our success rate if we could plant a high-ranking spy in their camp…” Leylin said, seemingly with a sigh.
“Master! This humble servant deserves death. The thieves and spies that were previously sent to the Baltic archipelago in the past all seemed to have been uprooted, and the ones that are left can only divulge ordinary information…” Karen immediately begged for forgiveness. Only after working for Leylin for so long did she realise how deeply terrifying he was.
Compared to this master, those pure-blooded drows in the Underdark seemed extremely kind-hearted!
“The reason I said that was not to blame you,” Leylin shook his head, thinking that his servant’s cowardice was not a good thing at all.
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