Go to the Magic Tool Shop.
It was an intuitive and clear message and I could immediately understand what this advice was about.
One of the biggest problems I was facing was:
When I saw the word Magic Tool Shop, I couldn’t help but get this idea right away. I didn’t have anything other than the clothes on my body and my labour to offer.
And the scrolls remaining in the Scroll book.
If I were to sell the scrolls to a magic tool shop, I’d, of course, make lots of money. Scrolls were expensive after all.
The intentions I read out of this were to first put out the big fire by selling these to get money.
However, I wasn’t that reassured. The Writer’s Advice would have good but also bad effects simultaneously in most cases.
It advised me to sell the scrolls to raise money.
A bad outcome I could think of would be the possibility of getting ripped off, of course. I didn’t know the market price, so the store owner would probably try to rip me off. I didn’t know the exact value of magic scrolls.
But I clearly remember Dyrus saying something like:
‘The Demon King’s Castle sure is amazing, even lower level scrolls are often more expensive than my salary.’
A lower level scroll was worth more or less the salary of a Lieutenant of the Imperial Army’s Cavalry.
So how much did a Cavalry Lieutenant earn?
As a (Self-proclaimed) Medieval Fantasy Specialist, I knew a thing or two about this.
There were always descriptions of how many gold coins one needed to feed a family of four, as well as, how much a regular person with an ordinary job would earn in a month.
Of course, I also wrote about those things.
In the case of this novel here, I had written that a gold coin was equivalent to a month’s food expenses for a family of four. And a regular person with an ordinary job earned about 2 gold coins a month.
I thought 1 gold coin = 1 million won. (T/N: ca 730 Euro)
It was easier to work with if I converted it like that.
How could a family of four live on just a million won a month? Wouldn’t they want to eat out at some point? Our house spends about 400 on food, you know?
I got these kinds of comments, but they’ll get by somehow.
These weren’t living expenses, they were just food expenses. There were no such things as comprehensive insurance, health insurance or telecommunication costs in this world after all!
I, as a (self-proclaimed) Medieval Fantasy Expert say:
One who seriously researches about the historical background is but a rookie!
There are just some things one wouldn’t be able to see if one didn’t empty their minds.
I felt sorry for those who weren’t able to enjoy this beautiful medieval fantasy world of magic, knights and social infrastructure that has virtually no science.
I have lived by the following ideals:
The focus of Medieval Fantasy isn’t on the Medieval part, but on the Fantasy part!
It’s not a ‘Medieval’ Fantasy, but a medieval Fantasy!
Most of them didn’t even have anything to do with the Middle Ages! It was kind of like a buzzword!
Anyway, How about we do OO with the setting of XX, lol?
The genre Medieval Fantasy was created by such shallow thoughts, however what unfolded in front of our eyes is a fantastical world that had nothing to do with the Middle Ages!
…This was fantastical in a different sense.
Let’s sell the scrolls and live on to see another day.
I was neither a wizard nor was I a knight, although I do have the ability to rule over demons, however as I was a Demon Prince who had fallen to the Imperial Capital, Gardium, there wasn’t even a single demon around here.
“….…Excuse me. Could you give me some directions?”
I tried to ask a passerby, who felt some silent embarrassment for the way I spoke, for the most important thing right now.
“Oh! Are you lost?”
No, well, a little.
The ones who mainly used magic tool shops were adventurers and wizards. Of course, This wasn’t an adventure novel, so while there were people who were adventurers, that didn’t really describe what they did. They did have a job, but I’ve never really thought about that.
…Come to think of it, how did adventurers make a living in this world? Did they get by with quests from the Adventurer’s Guild and monster subjugations? Was there even something like an Adventurer’s Guild?
There were adventurers, but I hadn’t set up what they earn or through what means.
If one thought about it, that was seriously weird.
When I tried thinking of ways adventurer’s earned their money, I could only think of dungeon explorations and monster subjugations.
However, if that’s how adventurers earned their money, that would also be a problem.
There was a regular army, so why did freelancers like adventurers do things like monster subjugations? If the country outsourced personnel to get rid of security issues, such as monster dens and raids, why did that country even exist? What did the citizens pay taxes for?
Although the Warrior Artorius actually killed the Demon King, but the Empire and its Principalities, that had enough military power to take on the Demon Army, solved their monster problems through the Adventurer’s Guild? What were the soldiers good for then?
So, if the regular army took care of monster subjugations and there were no such quests coming from the Adventurer’s Guild, then how did the adventurers earn their keep?
Well, if the whole world was filled with dungeons for adventurers to plunder wouldn’t that be weird as well? Why were rare magical items just rolling around in a dungeon and no country went to claim them for themselves? Wouldn’t they usually do something like nationalizing the dungeons so that adventurers wouldn’t monopolize them?
Wasn’t the existence of adventurers in and of itself a setting error judging by this world’s common sense?
If one started to pay attention to historical accuracy, one would lose, but I started to worry a little.
It really bothered me.
Since I started to think that this was the world I had to live in, I seriously tried to move on from that topic.
Let’s not think about this anymore. It’s not like hungry adventurers would just rush up to people asking for a penny. If adventurers didn’t have jobs, they’d just be robbers or even bandits.
There was just one thing I really had to care about.
To not get ripped off in the Magic Tool Store. I had to get at least 1 gold piece for each scroll. I was planning on keeping constant eye contact, to appear strong. I didn’t think it was too much to ask for a regular price. However, if they were to whine about the quality being not up to par or something, I’d never sell it to them.
I planned to go eat somewhere after I got some money.
I was so hungry.
Afterwards, I should find an inn and take some time to organize my thoughts.
There were positive points about the Writer’s advice in that it clearly determined what I should do, regardless of whether the advice was right or not.
If the advice was unconditionally good, I’d just empty my brain and follow what it told me.
Oh, is that why there were traps in there? They wanted me to stay on my toes?
Did they want to see me struggle or something?
As the main stage of the story, I had to describe the Capital Gardium in quite detail.
No, well, I didn’t go quite as far as describing every single brick. It was just specific areas.
However, setting up an imaginary place was quite cumbersome. It was pretty difficult, because there was a strong possibility that I might make mistakes and if it wasn’t properly set up, one would just get confused later on.
That said, the Capital Gardium was pretty similar to Seoul.
Was it just similar?
Well, I must confess, it was just Seoul with a different name.
This was my description of the Imperial Capital.
‘A great Irene river runs through the Imperial Capital Gardium, splitting it in the northern part where the imperial palace was located and the southern part where the temple was located. The river’s huge tributaries serve as its borders.’
Could you see it?
Gangnam and Gangbuk.
‘In the center of the northern part of Gardium lies the Imperial Palace Emperatos.’
In other words, the Imperial palace in Jongno. Of course, it wasn’t as big as Gyeongbokgung Palace, the entire Jongno District was the imperial palace after all.
‘In the southern Eredian district, one of the Capital’s two greatest landmarks, the Temple, the other one being the Imperial Palace, was located. It was also a gigantic educational facility and the cradle of many talented young people.’
In other words, the Temple was in the Gwanak District.
So Eredian District = Gwanak District.
So I ended up setting up the Capital Gardium as a space so similar to Seoul that the only thing different about it was the name. The districts also had medieval sounding names.
This was an actual sentence out of the novel.
[The main character’s party sprinted all the way from the Gehenna district to the Eredian district. The effect of their physical training was showing.]
How the scene actually appeared in my mind:
‘The main character’s party ran from the Dongjak District to the Gwanak District.’
It was kind of like that. I wouldn’t even need to create a different map. I could just imagine Seoul’s map and change the district names. It was convenient and I felt good about myself. If one just drew up an imaginary map, the readers wouldn’t even be interested in it. I did that when I was in middle school, but there was no one who was even remotely interested in it. That was when it hit me.
These maps of imaginary worlds were for the writer and not the readers. The reason Gardium seemed like Seoul was entirely because of my needs.
The Temple was in Gwanak and the Imperial Palace in Jongno.
The place I got teleported to was the Al Ligar District. Later it would be changed to Artorius District in honor of the hero. They would build a huge statue of him as well.
Where was this Al Ligar District and later Artorius District located, you ask?
This was Yongsan.
Of course, it was just the topography and division that were similar, the buildings were completely different, so this was just like a neighborhood I never went to before.
I arrived in Yongsan, so I headed towards the shopping district, which was about where the Yongsan Electronics Market was.
Even though this was an imaginary place, maybe because it was that kind of region.
“What kind of crappy scrolls are these? Dude, where did you get this stuff?”
As if proving that this was Yongsan, I encountered a gangster like bastard in my first try.
At the shop owner’s first words, I went back out to the streets thinking that I wouldn’t be able to do some immediate business with that owner, which I had already engraved as a gangster in my memory. He muttered something, but I didn’t even listen to what he was saying.
Every building around this area was a shop. Thousands of people were passing by, looking at things. Were all these people adventurers?
How was being an adventurer lucrative? Was there some kind of way to earn money that I wasn’t aware of? Actually, it had to be like thatt, otherwise there wouldn’t be so many of them.
It felt strange. As if someone filled my plot holes for me.
Noise came from every corner of this place.
“Oh, young adventurer! I just opened up! Hey, since it’s this store’s opening, I’ll sell to you at half the price, how about it?”
“Oh, so ya looked and touched all these things, but you’re not gonna buy anythin? Ya not gonna buy even one thing? Ha, you’re makin me laugh. Hey, follow me for a sec. Oh, come on, huh, ya won’t come? No! Let’s just talk for a sec. Who’s harassing ya? Huh? Makin a thug outta me now, are ya? I’m hurt. Ya want me to show ya what a real thug is? Huh? Want me to rough you up?!”
“Refund? Look at that bastard. Didja shit in ya lil panties and come crawling here for a refund? What kinda bitch are you, huh? Get your ass outta here!”
“Hey, bro, ya put a scratch on it! How can I sell it now, huh? Imma just cut it half, so take it! I’m selling at a loss here, ya know? Still not gonna buy it? Really now? Should I call the guards, huh? Let’s see who’s right, huh? Ya sure bout this? Really sure? Where ya from? Argand? Ya know big bro Rand then? Never heard of ‘im? Hah. What a son of a bitch! Hey, take it while I’m still bein nice here. Don’t make me angry.”
What’s with this?
Why did it really turn into Yongsan?
What unfolded before me was the medieval version of Yongsan.
“Was everyone like this?”
I felt like prey.
“Oh, well, erm. I’ll… I’ll just look for some other place….”
I tried my best not to get devoured.
– Hey, don’t make eye contact. Don’t meet their eyes. There are some crazy bastards who won’t even buy stuff and just unpack it and take it.
– They’re all retired adventurers, so they’re good at fighting. If you pick a fight, you’ll get one of your arms or legs broken.
Even the people who knew what this place was, came in groups.
Just when I was imagining Yongsan, what spread out in front of me was really the Yongsan I had in my mind.
And here I was, a 17-year-old push over that tried to sell magic scrolls from the Demon Realm to people who were even worse.
Just that one word made me feel like it was an impossible endeavour.