Chapter 125 Municipal Development
“What can you tell me about the people they’ve sent?” Roland asked.
“That’s right, please take a look below,” the Assistant Minister pointed to the bottom of the parchment, “Until now 1’100 people were sent to Border Town. Most of them belong to the ranks of serfs, in accordance with your request have all been held outside of the town. The thirty-five craftsmen have been placed under Karl’s command and their homes are all located in the ‘New Civilization District’,” Barov spoke these unusual mouthful of the terms, “But Your Royal Highness, is this really okay? I thought that area had specially been prepared for the witches.”
“The people I have sent out to spread the news about the safe haven haven’t returned yet, their progress is slower than I would’ve imagined. So, the first houses will be used for the craftsmen and their families, we can still build more afterwards,” Roland’s plan was to renovate the whole Border Town, the wooden houses and mud cottages would be converted into brick houses, while at the same time leaving enough space for wide streets between the houses, rather than the alleys just wide enough for two people to walk side by side, that they had now.
“Understood,” Barov nodded, “Your Highness, I’ve heard that there will also be cattle and sheep being shipped here?”
“Ah that’s true. But not now, I deliberately let them come a few days later, they will come together with the shepherds. They will be sent to the grasslands between the western city wall, the Concealing Forest and the Impassable Mountain Range; that should be a good area to turn into a pasture. We should reopen the destroyed part of the city wall and use it as an exit, after all, the wall is only useful during the Months of the Demons.
For now, they finally had enough people and money to break through the bottleneck and allow Border Town to develop further, so Roland was finally able to use all of his otherworldly knowledge.
He called one of the guards into his office and ordered them: “Go find Karl and tell him to meet me in the executive office, I guess if he isn’t at the mine he will certainly be at the new area outside the town.
Half an hour later, Karl walked into the office and bowed in greeting to Roland. “Your Highness.”
It has been nearly six months since he had seen the mason for the first time and since he had been recruited into the staff of the Town Hall, he could be regarded as the busiest official in the last half-year. First he had to preside over the construction of the city walls, and then there were the houses in the new district and the temporally wooden sheds for the new inhabitants of Border Town. Now, on his thirty-five-year-old silhouette, he revealed the first few strands of silver and his skin has also started darkening from always being outside. But the spirit Roland had seen burning in him at their first meeting was still burning as strong and hot as ever before.
That a new environment could quickly change a man was true. Only six months ago Karl was still carefully trying to hide himself, clearly busy running away from trouble. But now, as an experienced project commander who had personally been in charge of several people, even his gestures showed some hints of him feeling in power. But what Roland appreciated the most, was that he was always still willing to accept the thoughts of other people.
Roland acknowledged his greeting with a smile, “Please sit, and come take a look at his.” He handed him some sketches that he had previously drawn, “You see, I need you to build something new for me.”
“This building looks like a warehouse. Well, building it with its base placed on stilts it would be safe against incoming floods,” Karl quickly swept over the first sketch and then turned to the second one and after looking for a while he asked, “Is this supposed to be a furnace?
“Yes, I need you to build more than five of these furnaces near the North Slope Mine, they will be needed to calcine the cement and to burn clay bricks. So, you have to find an empty spot which still has good transport channels and the area should be spacious enough so that we can still later build some more furnaces there.”
“I understand.” Karl now turned his view to the last sketch and immediately frowned after he saw it, “This… seems to be sewers? No, there is also a roof and walls… and the area behind it looks like a pond. Your Royal Highness, I seem to be unable to make sense of this.”
Roland laughed, “This is a toilet, and will also be your construction project of the highest priority.”
“A toilet?” Karl thought about it, “Your Highness, where do you plan to build them? For this, you already have chamber pots placed in your castle, and your attendants are responsible for cleaning them on a regular basis. Most of the villagers don’t even use them, instead, they are doing it directly outside of their houses,” Karl explained. “The same is also true for the serfs, which can directly discharge their filth into the Redwater River, and the river will then take their filth away.”
So, that was the strong smell I smelled today at the dock, Roland shook his head, trying to erase these unpleasing thoughts, “If that is the case, we need to change this bad habit as soon as possible.”
“Uh… bad habit?” Karl still didn’t seem to understand what the Prince’s meaning.
For a commoner who was accustomed to urinating at any place, it was naturally hard for them to understand, how beautiful a casual stroll could be without having to fear stepping on a landmine, Roland criticized privately. “Anyway, you only have to follow these sketches, I have already roughly marked their size, so you only have to use this distance. Within the vicinity of the wooden shed district, you should build at least four toilets, always two side by side. In addition, the wall in the middle of the ditch should be built out of brick, while the outside walls and the roof have to be built out of wood, like this you can save a lot of cement.”
“Your Highness, you want to build them side by side… that…,” said Karl slowly, evidently, he thought that talking about this dirty theme with His Highness was clearly degrading the royalty’s dignity. “But what should we do when they don’t use them?”
“I will issue orders which they will have to follow. You just have to build them; I will take care of the rest.”
“Alright if that’s the case,” Karl said, nodding his head. “There is another matter I want to discuss with you, Your Royal Highness.
“You may speak.”
“The mason’s guild was forced to disband and now there are many people like me, who all chose to leave King’s City. I would like to write a few letters to those masons who already know where I went and try to recruit them to Border Town. They all have their own area of specialization, for example, for the furnace, Lesya would be the best at it. However, Your Highness I do not know… ”
“That’s no problem at all,” Roland said immediately. ” I will recruit all the masons you’re able to attract, and they will be paid according to their experience and skills, and they will also have the possibility to enter the town’s hall.”
“Thank you for your generosity,” Karl bowed once more then he left.
When the mason had stepped out of the hall, Roland began to write down his plan for the managing the serfs and how he wanted to disband the slavery system.
Border Town’s population had already started to rapidly increase with no end in sight, but as long as they had to dependent on importing food, the town would be in jeopardy if a natural disaster was to occur or the road to the other cities was cut off. Therefore, in addition to increasing and developing industry, development in the area of agriculture was an even higher priority. Border Town had to achieve the level of self-sufficiency as soon as possible.
The Prince believed that as soon as he was able to implement his ideas, the serfs could be turned into farmers, and combined with Leaves’ improved seeds, the area around the Redwater River would soon become a golden wheat ocean.
Regarding the high priority of the toilet, it also had to do with the development of the agriculture – with enough people, land and seeds, the last thing he still needed was the right kind of fertilizer.
Roland certainly knew how troublesome it was to produce fertilizer out of human and animals’ excrements, they had to regularly clean the storage pond, but they also had to rely on human manure, in the end, it was clearly inconvenient. But for now he didn’t have any clue of how to produce it on industrial level, so for the present, he had to rely on this pure natural and organic fertilizer – at least human-animal manure had already been used for a long time, even during the twentieth century some of the rural areas were still using this traditional fertilization.
Many people only had very little knowledge about fertilizer, the vast majority of them just thought that a stool was a dirty thing, and that they should never believe that besides of spreading nausea it could ever have any useful effects. Thus, to cultivate the fields each year, the farmers were still using the three-rotation system. For it a piece of arable land would be divided into three parts, taking turns for spring sowing, sowing in autumn and resting phase, all this was done to avoid the depletion of soil fertility due to constant use.