“You brats! How dare you try and act fast with me. Do you really want to get scolded properly?”
“No sir! We really didn’t do anything! We just brought everything as the merchants in the market gave them to us! We can swear it to God!”
“Are you telling me to believe that right now?”
“Yes! Because we’re telling truth!”
Levan crossed his arms and sighed heavily. Andrew decided to try and see if he could get him to calm down.
“We’re really innocent. We just brought the ingredients exactly as the merchants in the market sold them to us.”
“And of course, you can’t prove that can you?”
“Of course we can!”
“You can?” Levan asked, a little flustered at the unexpected response.
“Yes! Since we’re innocent, we can prove it!” Andrew continued,
“When we went to the market, we told the merchants that since we’ll be delivering to the mercenary camp, we need the freshest ingredients they have. From what I can tell, with the amount of money they charged, they shouldn’t have given such small amounts. Rather, since we’re buying lots at once, they should have take care to add more just in case. It might be that the merchants did it on purpose – since everyone thinks mercenaries have a lot of money anyway.”
Once again, Joshua spoke up from behind Andrew’s shoulder,
“No way! Do you think they charged more than normal because of that rumour that mercenaries are rich? Even though all we’d asked from them was that they gave us their freshest ingredients?”
“Something like that? Probably.”
“Rockefeller Hyung did say that mercenaries can earn a lot of money – did they do that just because of that?”
Levan who had been quietly watching the exchange between the two brothers frowned, it kind of seemed like a lie but it was possible for it to be the truth too.
“Then let’s do this. Just for tomorrow, I’ll have one of my colleagues go with you – just to watch how you do it. You can go around the market exactly how you did today, with the same money, and buy the ingredients. If the amount you bring back is the same, then it’ll be those b*stard merchants that are ripping us off.”
At those words, Andrew and Joshua could breathe and inward sigh of relief. They had already made the deals – so everything would turn out the same anyway.
The Next Day
Levan had a hard time believing the conclusion right in front of his eyes.
“It’s exactly the same? Then it’s those b*stard merchants in the market that were ripping us off? Hey, did you follow them around properly and watch them the entire time?” When Levan turned his questions to the mercenary he had sent along with the children, he simply nodded without a word.
It turned out that the merchants in the market were openly ripping them off.
“We were telling the truth right? We didn’t try to scam you!”
“We just brought the ingredients straight from the market like we said. We’re innocent!”
When Andrew and Joshua looked up at him with clear eyes, there was nothing more Levan could say.
“Those d*mn merchants. Trying to rip us off? Because we make some money, is that it?”
From the sounds of it, the rumours that mercenaries tended to make a lot of money had spread across the market. And since the ones who went to run errands were children who hadn’t even come of age yet, those sharp merchants had seen the opportunity to make a little extra money and some of them had agreed to raise the prices.
Levan was becoming convinced of the story the children had spun.
“…I’ll apologise to you guys then. It seems I doubted you for no reason.” At his words, Andrew and Joshua smiled with relief.
“It’s alright! It’s understandable after all.”
“Yeah! We’re okay. So from now on, should we just carry on running the errands like this?”
Mutual trust was the life-blood of business transactions.
And since they had managed to protect that trust, Levan too had no reason to end the deal with the two children.
“Of course. I’ll be relying on you two going forwards as well.”