Chapter 39: Civilization Progresses Well When There Are No Dark Ages
When the capital was out of sight, the view outside the window was filled with lush green fields.
I’m assuming that it’s probably wheat since bread is usually served for meals… Is wheat already planted at this time of the year? Unfortunately, I didn’t have any knowledge in this area from my previous life, so I couldn’t discern whether it was the same plant from Earth or something completely different.
“Farmland as far as the eye can see… As expected of the Empire.”
Rosalia, who was also looking out the window, said… Ah, I see. I can just ask her.
“Is this all wheat?”
“What is… wheat?”
Oh, she doesn’t understand that word?
… Does that mean that they don’t call it wheat in this world? Or is it something else altogether?
“What is bread made from?”
“Oh, white wheat.”
White wheat… I see. That’s how it is made in this world.
I tend to think in the terms used in my previous life because I have my past life memories, but I shouldn’t. I am living in this world now.
I don’t know if ‘white wheat’ is really the same as the ‘wheat’ of my previous life, but I’ll assume that it’s something close to that for now.
“I am sorry, Your Majesty. I cannot tell if this is white wheat, rye, green wheat, or barley…”
Rosalia said in a depressed tone.
I don’t know what traits each of those has. But they were probably grown in the general farmland since she didn’t know which one it was. As I recall, crop rotation… is when you grow different crops in a cycle on the same land for several years.
It seems that agriculture is progressing efficiently.
“Ah, don’t worry about it. I also don’t know either.”
“Okay… Ah, but it seems that Lord Aquicurl and Lord Raul’s fief use the ‘three-field system’. Perhaps you can see it on this tour.”
Three-field system… is a term I know as well. Was it something like by rotating the farmland through summer grain, winter grain and the livestock grazing in sequence, the fields aren’t depleted of its nutrients…? Honestly, I don’t know exactly how it works or anything.
But I do know what brought it about.
The increase in population accompanied by the increase in productivity, and the collapse of the serf and manorial systems.
… I see. Is that also the reason why there are so many lower ranked aristocrats outside of the capital?
The Empire is one of the leading agricultural nations on the continent. I heard this from Count Palatine Vedett. I thought it was simply because we had vast flatlands, but it seems that… optimization is paying off.
“Have you seen it before, Rosalia?”
Three-field system should be impossible in the fief under the Emperor’s direct control, but I guess it’s possible in Aquicurl’s fief.
The land must be divided into plots for a three-field system. It is essential to have a powerful aristocrat who can compel farmers with farmland to ‘move’ to another farm or ‘designate’ the grain they produce.
But there is no such person in this area. The Emperor would usually play this role, and even if there is a magistrate, they would just be a puppet of the Chancellor or Regent factions. They wouldn’t go to the trouble of reforming agriculture since it would strengthen the Emperor’s influence.
“Yes. I saw it on my way to the capital since I came by boat.”
“Oh, water transportation?”
The fastest means of transportation in this era is by boat. The rivers flow more gently than in Japan.
“I would like to ride on a boat…”
Well, I would actually like to see the difference between the speed of a horse-drawn carriage compared to a boat.
“That would be… tough on security. Of course, you might be able to protect yourself with magic if the need arises, Your Majesty…”
Well, that’s true. The defence of this carriage is too high… wait… what did she say?
… Wait, hold on. I’ve never shown Rosalia my magic, nor have I told her that I can use it.
How did she know?
That information is my lifeline, my last safety rope, one of my few trump cards!!!
I slowly spoke after a moment of silence.
The tone of my voice sounded quite displeased.
“Since you showed me around the Great Library.”
The Great Library… I wanted to read a book on magic at that time, so I used Rosalia as a cover.
I did pick books about magic back then, but I properly played the role of ‘the kid who wanted to show off to the girl he liked, so he picked difficult books even though he didn’t understand it’… She shouldn’t have been able to conclude that I could use magic just because I picked a book about magic. Why on earth does she…
“Please forgive my rudeness, Your Majesty. If you couldn’t read at that time, then you would have chosen thick or decorative books. And if you could read a little then you would have chosen books with difficult titles or books with a long title.”
… What is this feeling? Is this how it feels to be paralysed on the spot?
“You also picked up several other books that had nothing to do with magic. With those books, you only chose ones with long titles and gorgeous covers. But only the books on magic were something that was not meant to ‘deceive’. You chose practical books such as ‘Magic Bestowal’ and ‘Defensive Magic’ and even a theory book ‘Research Report’.”
… Ah, right. She’s right. Damn. Now that I think about it, I was too careless. Why hadn’t I noticed? It was so obvious.
Well, it doesn’t seem like the Chancellor and Regent factions have noticed. This… shouldn’t be a problem.
“Of course, there was a possibility that Your Majesty was just ‘genuinely interested’… but if that had been the case, then you would not have had to use me. So, I concluded that you could use magic.”
Rosalia said. Then, she laughed quietly.
… She wasn’t surprised that she had realised this. But well, I did use her. I suppose an apology is in order.
“Ah, I’m sorry about that.”
Rosalia looked stunned when I apologised and asked puzzlingly.
“I apologise, Your Majesty, but what are you apologising for?”
“Hmm? For using you.”
Rosalia blinked a couple times then slowly laughed again.
“Oh my. I am at a loss, Your Majesty. I cannot believe you apologised for something like that. It is alright… I hope you will use me more, Your Majesty.”
I’m grateful that she didn’t mind. But why is there a slight hint of bliss in your smile?
“Unfortunately, it seems like I will make the same mistake. I would appreciate it if you would help me out.”
“With pleasure, Your Majesty!”
… Frankly, I’m scared. She’s just like Timona.
“So? Who else knows about this?”
“Only Salomon. I do not mind if you keep an eye on me. Also, I have not told anyone else about what I concluded.”
If possible, I had hoped that you hadn’t told anyone.
She didn’t have to say that she ‘knew’ anything, since I didn’t realise that she knew.
Rosalia purposely telling me this could be seen as sincerity…?
“Haah… I’m glad you’re my fiancée.”
I might have been checkmated if she had been an enemy.
“I am glad as well, Your Majesty!”
Rosalia said as she smiled widely, and I thought, I might never be able to win against this girl.