With the help of the handmaidens, Lobelia came down to the dining hall, where Jade was waiting as she had expected, groomed and dressed in a beautiful dress.
At her arrival, Herold ordered the maids to serve the food and soon, a sumptuous dinner was set on the table.
It was just yesterday when Lobelia had lunch with Jade at this table, but it felt like a long time ago.
As Herold tried to pull a seat for Lobelia, Jade stood up and said, “I’ll do it.”
“You should leave now,” Jade interjected, “I want to have an intimate dinner.”
When the two of them were alone, a moment of silence enveloped the hall.
Lobelia sat still and watched Jade across from her.
The delicious aroma of the food wafted over their noses, but once again, the two of them were not interested in dinner.
“Let’s start talking in earnest,” Jade said, lifting his wine glass without touching the food.
“As I’ve told Count Evelentia, you should enter the academy first.”
“I know,” Lobelia nodded.
“Are you worried about losing time to the Academy?” Jade asked, seeing Lobelia’s expression darken slightly, and she nodded honestly.
“It’s a private place,” she replied, “That’s why Marlon allowed it.”
Jade let out a small laugh, hearing Lobelia call the count’s name outspokenly.
“You don’t have to worry about that,” he said, “You have to live in a dormitory, but if I visit you there, you can leave the premises under the guise of a date.
It’s also possible to stay out for a long time.”
Lobelia imagined Jade coming to the Academy and taking her out on a date. Well, that’ll make me a very unfaithful student, she thought.
But her life in the Academy didn’t matter anyway.
“That’s enough of the Academy,” said Jade.
He took a sip of the wine before setting his glass on the table and asked, “You said you were going to do business, but have you decided what you’re going to do specifically?”
“I’ll tell you beforehand,” he added, “all I can do is pretend to be a fake lover.
Even if you are the Duke of Ferrado’s lover, you can’t spend the Duke’s money indefinitely.”
“I know,” answered Lobelia.
Jade scrunched his eyebrows, looking puzzled.
“If you’re not going to borrow money from me, how will you run a business?” he asked.
The basis of business is to secure funding.
There are a few businesses that can be started with no capital, but it will take a lot of money to tap into the businesses that Evelentia owns.
Lobelia has compiled a list of Evelentia’s businesses, which is divided into four categories.
First, gold and precious stones; second, consignment fees from railroads passing through the main commercial bases of the empire; third, the rental income received by leasing Evelentia’s land in the capital to the owners of opera houses and department stores; and fourth, financial businesses based on government bonds purchased in large quantities.
These businesses are organically interconnected, and they extend their branches to businesses other than Evelentia’s.
Gold and precious stones quarried in the mines are transported by railroad, which are then supplied to department stores owned by the Regretina Family, another high-ranking aristocratic house.
“It takes a lot of money to run a business comparable to Evelentia,” Jade said.
Lobelia smiled at his concern.
“I know that, too,” she said, “so you don’t have to worry.”
Upon reading the Original, Lobelia was enlightened about the world and its functions.
The book detailed how Aina, who inherited Marlon’s fortune, operated her business.
Seeing Lobelia’s relaxed demeanor, Jade’s eyes narrowed in intrigue.
“So how do you intend to raise money?” he inquired.
“To get investment,” Lobelia answered.
“Investment?” Jade raised an eyebrow.
“Take me to the Imperial Palace,” she said, “I’ll take care of it.”
“Imperial Palace?” he asked again.
“Sooner or later, the time will come.”
Lobelia explained to Jade what she had planned.
It was the role that Aina would play in the Original, but Lobelia took the opportunity this time.
In the process, she would inevitably compete with Aina, but Lobelia was confident of winning.
She had the knowledge of the Original.
Jade, who had heard all of Lobelia’s story, nodded, “I’m sure we’ll get funding that way.
It’s quite difficult, but from what I’ve heard, it’s not without possibilities.”
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