Looking for an Easy Escape
It’s been two days since the goblin raid.
Soon after, I returned to Straheim, but Carla has been in a bad mood since I didn’t let her fight, and Satella had lectured me, sobbing all the while.
In the end, we spent the entire day sightseeing around the streets as they had wanted, the day ended without a hitch.
I personally found babysitting them much more challenging than defeating the Goblin Lord, however.
Now, back to the matter at hand: Tote.
There were few injuries during the goblin raid outside of the light scratches that Judo and the others received. In the relatively spacious building near the village chief’s house, we were, much to my surprise, able to treat the patients and continue their treatment without any need for evacuation.
At first, we had helped the previously captured women recuperate in Tote before sending them back to their respective hometowns as planned.
On the other hand, the winged pair had been accepted into the village through my recommendation, had begun settling down in the corner of the village, and currently were finishing up the immigration process. I had some misgivings about my stepmother’s clique and the empire’s officials finding fault with that, so I placed them under my protection, and if any problems cropped up, I could just hire them through my company.
And so, the supreme decision-making organization that was the committee of elders, or rather an inefficient organization, was disbanded, and its new members were left for the village chief to elect.
Currently, the new candidates were gathered inside the village chief’s house.
“I’m sure you are all familiar with the past series of events. You won’t get anywhere by only relying on others,” I said. “You’ve got to change your approach.”
“I see……” one of the candidates replied.
Well of course they don’t understand; it’s much easier to leave everything to others and to fate. It’s because they’ve always been looking for an easy escape.
“Here’s what you need to be thinking about,” I continued. “‘How can we legally avoid paying taxes in order to earn even higher profits?’”
Naturally, the village’s defense is a necessity, but as they are now, there’s no way they can defend the village on their own. Right now I have to lend them my support, so we need to prioritize improving their economic awareness.
“A-avoid taxes?” one voice raised its concern as everyone began squirming around like bugs packed in an insect cage.
I assuaged their fears, saying, “It’ll be completely legal. You all lack the power to think on your own in order to overcome your hardships. Don’t be swayed by convenient concepts like God or the devil anymore.
The same applies to people: nobody is perfect, so suspect anything and everything. This applies to not only your external world, but also your internal. And in doing so, these doubts will surely protect you.” 
Still, they won’t understand with just this—they need to experience it themselves.
“Now, onto the specifics,” I shifted the subject. “Judo has procured 500 sacks of rye, so for now, nobody should go hungry for at least a year.”
They began to shout in joy. Err, don’t celebrate just yet. We won’t reach any resolutions at this rate.
“In the meantime, we need to find a fundamentally different solution to farming,” I said. “By the way, can anyone who knows how the agricultural tax is calculated raise their hand?”
As expected, nobody raised their hand. Giresse had told me that anyone who wanted to learn could have, and yet, not a single person other than the village head had even tried to. This is why they’ve been exploited so.
“A 50% tax is imposed on the total production output, which is calculated by multiplying the area of the fields with the harvest coefficient. This is the same for all villages. The only thing the Millard head can change is the tax rate—he would need the Central Bureaucracy’s permission to change the production output,” I explained. “Still, it’s normal for this to be an estimate on the lower side, so the tax won’t be relaxed.”
“Why not, Boss?” Judo raised his hand to ask.
“Because conscription. The conscription is based off the production output. The reason the empire rarely conscripts from the Millard territory is because the production output is low—after all, if people are conscripted, then the production rate will plummet. If the empire conscripts from Millard despite this, then Millard will no doubt be destroyed. You can count on that. And unless something really good happens, the production rate won’t change.”
“But isn’t it useless that only the Millard head can change the tax rate?” Carla asked, capturing the true nature of this problem.
“That’s right. If the overall production rate of the entire Millard territory increases, then the Millard head will just respond by raising the taxes.”
“Oh, so the tax rate can only be calculated off of the entire Millard territory?” Carla continued.
You’re a sharp one, Carla. The gears in your head are spinning quickly.
“That’s right. Basically, even if the production output greatly increases in a single village, as long as the overall tax rate of the territory doesn’t rise, they can’t tax our increase,” I explained. “However, if they raise the tax rate of the entire Millard territory, the other villagers won’t be able to keep going—if all went bad, a rebellion might even erupt. So the Millard head can’t raise the taxes, and any increases will be our profits.”
“But for only us to prosper, that’ll be like betraying all the other villages,” Carla gasped.
“Throw those thoughts away,” I said. “This holds especially true with the recent attack, but you guys are in a position where you always have to be on guard for any monster raids; you don’t have the flexibility to worry about other villages.”
“I agree with Saint-sama. We’re protecting the other villages from monster raids, so they’ve got no right to complain to us!” declared the woman whose older brother had been killed by the committee of elders. Voices of agreement began sounding out left and right.
“I seem to have convinced you. Then I’ll move onto the specifics: how we will raise our production output.”
I first explained the Norfolk farming method to the villagers and then bought some livestock and lent them to the village.
Autumn will arrive soon, after which we’ll plant beans, raise livestock, and fertilize the land. We’ll then plant rye in the spring as per usual before harvesting. After harvesting, we’ll release the livestock to graze the land, and as they multiply, sell those that can be milked or provide other uses. With the funds from those sales, we’ll turn the rye into wheat and repeat the next year.
The merit of this method is that while the empire legally requires us to maintain the land, any tax taken from raising livestock must be registered in Centrals animal husbandry ledger.
However, that won’t happen because it might lead to conscription. That’s why this will be a side job where the profits all go to the village.
For now, Judo, Carla, and the other children who attacked my carriage will work for my company, Sagami Co. I had thought they’d be hesitant to work in manual labor, but surprisingly there was no resistance—maybe because the injured were soon to make a recovery.
Anyways, my agriculture management began, although it was a bit out of the norm.
The internal world is a person’s subjective sense of self and all of the thoughts that it generates. The external world is everything else.
I’ve never heard this term used before, although you can probably guess what it means. I’ll just copy a definition in case. The harvest coefficient is the percentage of total forage produced that is assigned to grazing animals for consumption. I think in this case it’s not necessarily assigned to grazing animals, just total forage produced.
Also, I don’t know why the author decided to split this number into two parts.