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Chapter 21 – Behind The Market
“What are you thinking, Yoshua, that you can kill all the enemies?”
“If you ask me, yes, I can. Wait a minute.”
I looked at my status, which I had forgotten to check for a long time, and saw that my rank had risen by one level, and each parameter had increased significantly.
Yeah, I’m finally starting to get over 100.
Name: Yoshiaki Takefu
Occupation: Merchant of Death, Terrorist, Guardian of the Subhuman, Observer of Malice
Physical Strength: 45
“My stats are… looking pretty good, especially my magic.”
“That’s right. Yoshua was a mage in the first place, right? It’s the result of defeating a high-ranking mage as well.”
“No, I’m… a merchant, after all. But then again, do you need to kill a mage to increase your magic power?”
“You can also increase it by killing monsters. It seems that it is proportional to the amount of magic power of the person who killed it, so killing monsters is more efficient. If you try your hand at dangerous opponents, you will easily die.”
I didn’t go through the new job title. Or rather, I don’t think terrorists and guardians are job titles.
The low level of cordage (which probably means emotional ties) that doesn’t extend at all indicates a lack of popularity. Basically, the number of skills seems to increase with the number of uses, not with the rank. It was then that I realized I hadn’t properly tested the appraisal among the skills I had.
“Oh, yes, Myrril, can I appraise you for a moment?”
“No, of course not!”
Eh? She shook her head and was taken aback. Her face was a little red.
“I know you lack common sense and have no ill intentions, but it’s very rude, you know. Especially for a man of your age to appraise a young girl is such a shameful act that the guards should be called immediately.”
Is there a policeman here?
If applied to someone else, a sensitive person will be able to detect it, especially a person with magical powers. It’s best not to do this, as it will usually result in anger or more than just anger.
I’m glad I didn’t do it against the elves…
“Oh, but that elf from before had used it on me!”
“Hmm. It may have been not very pleasant, but it was meant to be used to check on people and things whose identity you don’t know. That time, well, I guess it couldn’t be helped.”
Basically, it’s for use against objects. Maybe there’s a use for it as a merchant.
Now, it’s time for me to start my work as a merchant.
A white light blocked my vision, and the world stopped moving.
Simon appeared, still propping his elbows on the counter table and looking at me with a smirk on his face. His eyes turn to Myrril, who has stopped moving beside me.
“Hey, brother. Is that little girl your girlfriend?”
“No, she’s my guardian. In this world, I’m just a kid, after all.”
“…Hmm. I don’t understand Japanese taste. So?”
“Correction and addition to the previous order. I need as much barbed wire as you can get your hands on, heavy machine guns, light machine guns. Mines and grenades, napalm, and flamethrowers if available.”
“I see. So the battlefield has finally been decided. In a flat area with a good view, there will be a lot of infantry… Oh, and if the cultural level there hasn’t changed from what my dad told me, there will be cavalry, right?”
If you’re looking for equipment for a blocking line, firearms for long-range shooting, and weapons for surface suppression, you know what I’m thinking.
“Do you think you can manage that?”
“I’m sorry, but I couldn’t get the M2. Heavy machine guns don’t come around that often. But I can get you a light machine gun. Right now, I have one M60 and one MG3 in stock, though they are a bit pricey. However, I have three spare barrels for the M60, but only one for the MG3.”
A light machine gun is a gun that can fire a series of 7.62 x 63 mm or a shortened version of 7.62 x 51 mm military ammunition, similar to a hunting rifle. Because of its heavyweight and the possibility of belt feeding ammunition jamming, it is basically operated by two people, one of whom is a loader.
“I’d like to have more than one, preferably of the same model. …Is there anything else?”
“Yes, six BARs, though the barrels are a bit worn out.”
I’m at a loss for a reaction.
The BAR (Browning Automatic Rifle) was used by the US military in WW2. It was sturdy, reliable, relatively light for a light machine gun (though it weighed 10 kilograms with ammunition), and could be operated by one person, but the 20-round box magazine had to be changed frequently. In addition, the barrel cannot be replaced. There are conflicting advantages and disadvantages.
“Oh yeah, I have two M1919s. Both of them have been equipped with tripods and have nearly 3,000 rounds of ammunition with belts. The belts are new, of course.”
Even though the belts are new, the guns themselves are also WW2-era heavy machine guns for position and vehicle use. The ammunition for this gun is 7.62 x 63 mm rifle ammunition. It was originally a hunting bullet.
“I’ve got close to a hundred M1903s. If you’re going to war, why don’t you buy them in bulk? You know, there are some advantages to sharing bullets, and I can get tens of thousands of 30-06s (7.62×63mm bullets). Not just for full metal jackets, but for hunting big game as well. Pretty appealing, right?”
“Hmm… Well, yes.”
The M1903 is a military rifle that was formally adopted by the U.S. military over 100 years ago. Until it was replaced by the semi-automatic M1 Garland, the mainstay of the U.S. military was the bolt-action rifle. 7.62 x 63 mm bullets are also used in the M1919 and other light machine guns.”
“I’ve been wondering about this for a while… You’re trying to get rid of the old stock in your store, aren’t you?”
“No, no, that’s ridiculous. I’m trying to give you the best option for your future with the limited budget you have, brother.”
Half of it made sense to me.
We’re facing an army that’s only a foot into the modern era, so it doesn’t need the latest weapons. However, the enemy also seems to have a large number of troops, and if the heroes and mages appear, a one-man army will not be able to deal with them. The beastman would need to be armed as well. Even the latest equipment is not enough, no matter how much money I have when it comes to numbers.
“Do you have any idea what I want?”
“Yes. Easy to handle, easy to maintain, sturdy and trouble-free, cheap price of guns and ammunition. …Right?”
He knows what it is. And it’s pretty accurate.
It’s kind of annoying, but there it is. If I were to go to war with the most powerful country in the world on my own, there would be a limit to how many allies I could get. Simon knows (from what his father told him) that the other side is armed with swords and armor, so it’s just a matter of how to bridge the gap in civilization and technology.
“Assuming I arm them for $300,000, how many men that can be armed?”
“I’d say a maximum of 100 and a minimum of 40. The enemy is going to be over thirty thousand at most.”
Simon burst out laughing. He seems to be enjoying himself, considering it’s someone else’s problem.
“If that’s the case, barbed wire is a good idea. You set up a horse-proof fence and snipe the horses when they stop. As for the infantry, you could use the barbed wire to create a bottleneck, keep them in place, and boom.”
Simon smiles as he opens his upturned hand and smiles. I hope things work out that way. I’ll talk to the dwarves about building obstacles and conduits.
I see, a horse barrier. If the cavalry with spears rushes us in numbers, they’ll be able to get past the gunfire, and we’ll be finished.
“Do you have any mines?”
“Oh, plenty of homemade ones. I got plenty of napalm and fragmentation grenades.”
“Hmm, IEDs. That’s the real deal. …But I can’t use a cell phone over here, you know?”
“You can use radios for detonation, but I’ve got some wired ones in stock up to 500 yards. If you get a certain height, you can detonate it with an impact.”
That’s good to know. If we can lure them into a narrow canyon, we might be able to kill them all.
Simon was taking notes and pulling out this and that piece of equipment when I noticed a gun propped up on the counter. There was a long, thin rifle on the counter that made me look up from my 6’4″ frame. I feel like I’ve seen this somewhere before.
“Oh, this? I prepared it in case you needed to secure a long-range suppression capability. It’s a Simonov PTRS. It’s what’s called an anti-tank rifle. Now that tanks are hardened, they’re called ‘anti-material rifles’.”
Oh, I remember now. It’s from an old anime. A guy with a beard and a hat was firing this thing at an armored enemy that could bounce off .357 Magnum rounds.
[T/n: I’m sorry, I don’t know what anime is this.]
“The ammunition for this thing is special; isn’t it still available?”
“No problem at all, 14.5 x 114mm ammunition is still in use in anti-aircraft machine guns. Here, you only need about 200 rounds for now.”
“What’s the anti-aircraft machine gun?”
“KPV. I’ve been looking for it, but it seems to be in short supply everywhere since the resistance took it by the roots in some coup.”
A coup d’etat with eastern weapons? Syria?
“And I’m sorry.”
Simon placed one of the armors I had given him on the counter. There was a long horizontal indentation in the breastplate.
“It seems that with my special ammunition in this armor, depending on the angle, it would be stuck and crushed. If I’ve put you in danger because of that, it’s my fault. But, you know, full metal jackets (copper-coated warheads) can pull through even .45s. Look.”
There are a few round holes under the dent. Apparently, he had tested it for penetration.
“This one is for service. Take it. Why don’t you let your girl have it?”
One UZI with a shoulder strap, three spare mags, and five .45 caliber rounds in a box of fifty. The holster and mags for the M1911, which use the same ammunition, are quite thoughtful.
“All in all, it’s good business.”
When I complimented him, Simon chuckled and silently shrugged his shoulders.
I think he’s thinking about me as well as his own interests and convenience.
Of course, it’s only when he’s sure that I’m going to make a good profit that he does that.
“Ok, I get it. Except for Simonov, the ammunition I will procure from now on will be the 30-06. As for the guns, I want you to throw out every last one of your 100-year-old bad stocks. And surface suppression weapons. Give me what you have.”
“Yes, sir. As much as the budget allows.”
“Don’t worry about going over budget a little. The opponent is the largest and most powerful army in the world, and its main force is the nobility. The transportation unit has about 800 wagons. There’s no way they don’t have convertible supplies and negotiable currency.”
“…I hope so.”
“It’s give and take. I will make sure you get your money’s worth for your contribution.”
I’m neither a soldier nor a hero, but I do not have the qualities of a merchant either. At least, I’m not adept enough to wage war with one hand and bargain with the other.
Simon smiled back at my hard, desperate smile.
“Yeah, I’m looking forward to it.”