“Sorry for the wait. The appraisal is finally done, and as long as you are not dissatisfied with my valuation, I would happily purchase these items.”
His valuations huh…..
He had attached some kind of paper to each item with some markings but that didn’t really tell me how much the price he had decided on. Perhaps, someone used to these things would know what they mean?
“By valuations, are you referring to these markings? Apologies, but I don’t know how to read these.”
“oo, my bad, then if you don’t mind, I’ll explain orally. First of all, the accessories- this earring is 2 silver coins, the ring is 4 silver coins and this necklace, around 3 gold coins.”
“Though small, there are sapphire pieces embedded around it after all.”
I unexpectedly raised my voice from the surprising valuation.
My heart began to beat faster realizing this must have been a precious belonging of my mother……
But then again, she barely paid any attention to me and only coddled Klaus. She was the happiest when Klaus ended up becoming the heir to the family as well.
Remembering I was almost killed by Klaus, I angrily and forcefully killed any sort of guilt I was feeling.
“3 gold is insane!? A deal like this only happens every few years!”
“Hey Ralf, don’t eavesdrop.”
“But he’s the one who shouted that out so I ended up hearing it that’s all……Hey, were you from some rich family?”
“Hey we’re still in the middle of negotiations, so don’t butt in between. You can talk to him later……and lastly this pocketwatch, it’s about 1 gold coin.”
“1 gold eh…….”
Turns out Father’s pocketwatch is cheaper than I thought instead.
Not like I’m an expert in watches or something but he always seemed to take great care of the watch so I was sure it was something expensive.
To think Mom’s necklace turned out to be more expensive…….
“So? What will you do? Are you okay with selling it all?”
“ehh…….I’ll sell everything except the pocketwatch.”
“Very well. Here’s 3 gold and 6 silver coins. And your pocket watch, as it was, of course.”
Money was vital right now, and its not like the pocketwatch was of much use to me but…..
With the price being as underwhelming as it was, I ended up refusing to sell it.
Was I still feeling guilty? I wondered as I put it all back inside my bag.
“Thank you. Seriously, that was a huge help.”
“Like I said, stolen goods go for a bit cheaper than normal and gives me better profit so need to thank me. Anything else, I can help you with?”
I recalled the book that piqued my interest. The necklace’s price really had completely blown everything else out of my mind until now.
“Actually, something caught my eye among your things. There’s this book, [The Wandering tales of Otto the Botanist]? What kind of book is that?”
“Hoho, you have an eye for peculiar things sir. In fact even I’m quite interested in that book. With its contents being a complete mystery, I have put it at that price but it hasn’t quite caught a buyer yet.”
“ahh……is that so. WIth that price, I thought it was about someone really famous but I guess I was wrong?”
“Well, it seems so. If they were someone who achieved something truly great, it would have been very famous……..But, and call this instinct, but I have a feeling that its contents are much better than some plain old biography.”
The man spoke profoundly with a grin, his words calling to my soul.
You cant help but show interest. But 3 gold is too much for me.
Even with all the sales, all I have in total right now is 5 gold coins. If I spent it all on a book here, it’ll be putting the cart before the horse. I came here to make money, not decrease it.
“Honestly, I’m very interested but……..dont exactly have the leeway to take the gamble, do I? Sorry, I’ll have to pass for now. If its still unsold when I come back next, I’ll gladly take it off your hands.”
“Interesting……then how about buying it with instalments instead? I’ll let you take it without paying for now, but you can pay me back when you have earned the money, how about it?”
What a ridiculously insane offer. I couldn’t help but stare blankly at the old man. Has he gone senile? But he was still showing that soft smile, looking straight into my eyes.
“And how are you okay with that? I might never come back you know? Shouldn’t say this myself but…..I’m just some random that just sold stolen goods to you.”
“HO HO HO. I’m not suggesting this without any assurances, trust me. Like I said before, this book hasn’t been sold for many years now, losing it for free now wont make much of a difference at this point.”
“Lets put it this way. If you DO bring me money back, doesn’t that mean that I just sold a book I wasn’t able to sell for years at this point?…….Also, if you don’t by any chance, I’ll just get Ralf here to pay me instead!”
“WHAT!? Like I ever could do that!”
The poor boy shouted, having been dragged into the crossfire.
The old man began to laugh seeing his reaction.
“How about it? Think of it as doing me a favour instead eh?”
“…….If you are okay with it, I quite literally have no reason to reject such an offer.”
“Oi wait! Just to make it clear, I’m not paying for shit okay!!?”
“Ho ho ho, then wait here, I’ll bring it right now.”
On his recommendation, I obviously took up his offer. The boy continued to complain but the book was soon in my hand.
“When I have the money, I’ll most certainly pay you back. Thank you for everything.”
“No need to thank me, like I said. Just pay me back while I’m still alive okay!”
“Yeah, for sure.”
“Oii! I’m not involved in this alright! I’m paying for anything okay!!?”
After I and the old man firmly shook hands, we left the store with the book and money in hand.
Not just purchasing what I stole, he even showed an odd amount of trust to a stranger and gave me that book with a deferred payment deal. What a gentleman!
I don’t think I’ll have more stolen goods to sell ever again but, if I ever find something I wanted to sell in the future, I’ll be sure to make him my first choice. And I swore to myself to pay him back for the book at all costs.