The Bewilderment of the Sacrificial Second Princess ~ Married Into the Enemy Country as a Hostage Princess, but Was Strangely Welcomed With Open Arms~ – Chapter 3
Chapter 3: In the city where we stopped
As we traveled to the capital of the Baratonia Kingdom, where the royal castle stood, we made several stops at various towns along the way.
The towns had comfortable inns and dining establishments that served local delicacies, and they were easy to explore on foot. However, there were no libraries or bookstores and maps were not available for sale.
When I asked Prince Auglia about this, he gave a wry smile and ran his hand through his hair.
“Papermaking isn’t a practice in this kingdom. We still use parchment or wooden tablets. It would be great if paper became more accessible to the people…”
“I see. Have you tried importing paper through trade?”
“Yes, but paper isn’t a commonly traded commodity. The same goes for ink, which we don’t use much of anyway.”
I pondered on this for a moment. The Baratonia Kingdom had vast forests, and one could even say that the plains were surrounded by mountains and filled with crops.
The mountains were not barren and even from a distance, you could see that the lush forests were composed of coniferous trees. There was no need to cut down so many trees, and if more were planted, the forest would recover within a decade.
If the forests were gradually cut down to make paper, it would also impact the livelihoods of those who made a living through farming and dairy by causing damage to their crops.
I have some knowledge, but I don’t feel confident enough to say, ‘Let’s do this.’ I need to learn more about the Baratonia Kingdom before I can make any careless statements.
“I love books. When I was browsing the miscellaneous goods store, I realized that the technology for paper-making is not the issue. There are other challenges to overcome, but spreading the use of paper in this country is not impossible.”
It would be wonderful if the oral traditions of this land could be recorded in books.
Prince Auglia looked at me with a blank expression, perhaps taken aback by my sudden suggestion to popularize paper.
“I-I’m sorry, I went too far…!”
“No, that’s not it. That’s not it, Claire. Do you know how to make paper? And the equipment required?”
“Eh? Yes, I can draft the blueprints. It’s not a complex structure…Ah?!”
I couldn’t say anymore. I was so flustered and frozen when His Highness Auglia suddenly hugged me.
I’ve already familiarized myself with every book in the imperial library. Their contents are deeply ingrained in my memory. The books are made of wood, so I don’t need to worry about conserving resources. At times, I feel the urge to escape reality and I would like to indulge in that feeling by releasing myself into the world of books.
When I patted his back, he finally released me.
“You’re amazing. I’m so glad you’re here. We’ll take our time going over the documents in the royal city. And if there’s anything you need, don’t hesitate to ask. I’ll do my best to fulfill your request.”
“? Thank you, Your Highness.”
It’s kind and generous, but… it’s still unusual. I’m not accustomed to people treating me this way.
However, this was only the beginning.