, due to the efforts of Daiichi and Kinzou, no problems with the farming had cropped up.
But there was someone who had been waiting for Shizuko to leave her home for a long period of time.

(The wolves are not here either, so…)

That person was Aya.
She could not get the heavily locked wooden box out of her mind.
Normally Wittmann and the others would be here, but as Shizuko had been away a lot, they had all moved to a waiting position near the front door most of the time.
Thus, Aya saw this as her perfect chance.
Yet it still appeared impossible to remove the lock holding the box sealed by hand.
That was not only due to the sturdiness but rather because it was made in a complicated, puzzle-like fashion.
Resigning herself that it was not to be after all, Aya noticed a small box next to the wooden box.

(I have never seen a box like this before… could this be the content of the sealed box?)

As the wolves could come back at any moment, Aya had no time to ponder over the origin of the small box.
It wasn’t sealed at all, so she could easily open it up.
Aya glanced back at the entrance of the room once.
Confirming that there was no trace of the wolves, Aya gently opened the lid.

Inside the box were several notebooks.
However, Aya was unable to understand what they were.
An unknown object to her, Aya touched them lightly as she took in their rich luster and smooth texture.
If she had known silk, she would have likened the texture of the notebooks to it.

After hesitating for a little, Aya resolved herself, picked up a notebook, and opened it.
At this point in time, she was shaken a little and hadn’t noticed the title written on the notebook:

‘Consideration of Sengoku period and modern science and technology.’

In short, it contained Shizuko’s imagination (read: dark history) of ‘What I would do if I traveled back in time to the Sengoku period.’ As such, if Shizuko were to learn that Aya had read this, she would squirm in shame and agony.
However, as it stands, it was thanks to the contents of this notebook that Shizuko had managed to survive in the Sengoku period so far, so it was somewhat ironic.

(…I, I don’t understand what is written here)

But, there was a problem.
The characters written in the Sengoku period with brush and ink, and the characters written with a modern pencil, while still the same Japanese, looked completely different.
Unless you are able to read both the modern and the Sengoku period characters like Shizuko, the content of the notebooks is undecipherable.  In short, Aya could barely understand anything that was written in the notebook of Shizuko’s dark history.

Another issue was that Aya hadn’t learned more than necessary to read and write basic reports.

However, there were passages that Aya could understand as well.
Perhaps due to her personality, Shizuko had not only written down text but also added drawings and photos to her dark history notebook.

[In case of a big harvest, storing rice in bales will not be in time.
A wooden silo will be necessary.
Silos are useful for crops like rice, wheat, corn, and soybeans.
It’s also a structure to preserve and collect livestock feed in.
Its advantage is that it allows for long-term storage of unpolished rice.
It’s a wooden blueprint, but I saved it on my smartphone.]

Next to the picture were Shizuko’s notes.
But Aya was unable to decipher what the mix of Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji was supposed to mean.

(I can somehow read this… a storage? But this drawing… it looks like someone directly cut it from the landscape… what is this… oh no, my time is running out, I better continue on.)

Thinking that she should look for pictures she could intuitively understand, Aya flipped through the pages.

[For salt production, maybe sloping salt-terrace/Ryuka-enden 1.
According to Kyoko-neechan, salt is an essential seasoning for making dried plums, miso, and soy sauce, so whether we can mass-produce salt is vital for unification of the country.
I’ve read a collection of books on the history of salt at the library so I agree.
Ion exchange membrane method would be preferable, but the tech would be difficult in that era.]

(Salt…? And what is this drawing of lined-up sticks? Ugh, I don’t understand…next.)

[Oh, you can buy the Art of War from the net with one click.
The original Sun Tzu’s one was only 50 yen so it’s cheap.
The Nanban trade was with Portugal and Spain, maybe I should also buy some dictionaries and simple lesson books? Although, conversation is probably impossible …]

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(I-It’s full of worm-like characters…is this Nanban language? Next.)

[To produce miso and soy sauce, mass production of soybeans is necessary.
If I remember correctly, Grandpa said that he had devised a special farming method that could produce 500 kg per 10 a, so… better ask him next time.
Especially for soy sauce, they’re indispensable.
Can’t imagine living without soy sauce.
It’s really important so I’ll repeat it again and again.
Soy sauce is the very soul of Japanese seasoning.]

(…Next)

[Today I talked with Kyoko-neechan about guns.
AS expected, there’s no way to skip the tech tree from matchlock.
After all, there is not enough material.
Kyoko-neechan told me to get bauxite from Australia, but… the Aluminium refinement process is really difficult.]

(Sister…? Perhaps Shizuko-sama has a sister… Can’t read… Next.)

[Looking at a construction work in the neighborhood made me remember something.
Can’t I just use concrete there? I looked up about it when I got home, and the material isn’t hard to get.
There’s even concrete made out of saltwater.
Better save the manufacturing method in my smartphone as usual.
Since using iron rebar seems impossible, can I use bamboo instead? For road paving projects, Macadam paving would be enough.
The fundamentals can be searched on the net, easy peasy.]

(What is this thing? It’s full of yellow boards… but the vividness is beautiful…)

Aya briefly sighed.
She was overworking her head more than she expected, and now her shoulders felt stiff.
She focused her mind and read the rest of the notebook.
Realizing that it would take time to read each one, Aya decided to skim the notebook.

[I found some of my old notes on how to build water-powered automatic silk reeling machine.
How nostalgic… I talked about it a lot with grandpa and the people doing sericulture in our neighborhood, didn’t I? They looked at me strangely since I tried to avoid using metal… but in the end, I had to use it anyway.
But well… as long as it works.
When I submitted it as my summer research, it really creeped my teacher out…] [To liven up Gifu, as expected we have to gather people.
And how should we do that… one is by developing transportation networks, or by establishing logistics, or setting up banks… that’s a lot.
Let’s just make a list for now…] [Rant: I was found out by the teacher when reviewing this in class.
He was going to confiscate it, but when he looked at the content, he just sighed and returned it later.
Well, sorry for filling it with chuuni-like delusions!!]

There were characters lined up which made no sense to her, but Aya ignored those and turned the page.

[It would be nice to have a hemp schlichten decorticator.
For silk, a small-scale automatic reeling machine would be serviceable.
Last but not least is cotton.
But cotton is produced in Mikawa province.
I need to get the seeds somehow.
For spinning, modifying the silk spinning should be fine.
Silk goes to the capital, hemp and cotton will be half-half; half for domestic, half for export.] [Sweet potatoes need to be spread quickly.
It won’t be labeled as a weed if it becomes common enough.
More than anything, it eliminates the need for people’s nutrition overhaul after the unification of the country.]

After reading this far, Aya finally noticed that her hands were trembling.
She had started instinctively fearing the far-too-foreign notebook.
But she kept pushing through.

[For blackboard, you can make it by coating a wooden board and then varnish/lacquer with kakishibu. 2 And the chalk is from lime plus water plus glue, was it? If those could be made, we can spread the Terakoya 3 all over the country.
Education is important, my dear Watson.] [Kyoko-neechan said that fishery technology is also important.
But technology for shipbuilding and navigation is hard… It’s easier to get those from Nanban.
For the fish, most likely it’ll be dried…] [I tried to think about forestry tech, but can you just plant trees and leave them… of course you can’t.
Let’s research it properly.

 

[I asked Kyoko-neechan ‘if we just gather up the guns, can we get closer to uniting the country?’.
And she snorted.
She said ‘where would you get the funds to gather them? And how do you prepare a lot of gunpowder? Well, certainly you can’t get them willy-nilly like in games.
For the time being, let’s put a note to investigate the saltpeter that is the source of gunpowder.] [When I asked Koyoko-neechan whether the rhythm method 4 would be good for population growth, she slapped me.
Apparently, she misunderstood that I want to have a child.
I could understand her reasoning, more or less, but that was unreasonable… oh well, I’ll just write down the method’s content below…]

And that was her limit.
Her fear for the unknown has far passed the line.
Aya closed the notebook with her trembling hand.
And as if to avoid it, she put away the notebook in the wooden crate.
But, because of her fear and impatience, added with having to worry about Wittmann and the wolves, the notebook slipped from her hand.

(Not good… the wolves will notice that sound.)

She picked up the notebook in a hurry, then quickly and carefully put it in the wooden crate.
At that moment, a small piece of paper fell from the notebook.
Apparently, that paper was caught between the pages.
Aya picked it up and tried to put it in the notebook again.

[Production method (Confidental)]

But, when she saw some words that were written on that paper, her movement stopped.
It caught her eyes so she took a closer look at the paper.
What was written there was as follows.

[Production method (Confidental)

 

Summary

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How to produce excellent quality saltpeter.
There is no other method that’s more efficient with high-quality results.
However, it’s still easier to import a large amount of saltpeter from Europe.

Ingredients

Millet, tobacco, buckwheat, saku, hemp, udo(a relative to ginseng),muratachi, kusaya, shaki, silkworm feces, human urine, fertile soil, hemp field soil.

Production method Prepare a hut at a sunny place Pile up a hill of mixed soil, grass, and manure inside After that, mix it occasionally and add some manure that has sufficiently decomposed Repeat the work above for 3 to 5 years When it becomes muddy, scrape off the soil on its surface Obtain the saltpeter by extracting, boiling, and drying it.
(The same method as the Aged-Soil method.
See the appendix) Chemical reaction

Ammonia from decomposing substances and urine→ Nitrous acid due to work by bacteria
2NH3+3O2→2H2O+2HNO2

Nitrous acid oxidized→Nitric acid
2HNO2+O2→2HNO3

Nitric acid→Calcium nitrate by combining it with calcium in the soil
2HNO3+CaO→Ca(NO3)2+H2O

Calcium nitrate plus Lye(Potassium carbonate)→Potassium nitrate (Saltpeter)
Ca(NO3)2+K2CO3→2KNO3+CaCO3

Note:
This manufacturing method is a top-secret tech.
The only other ones who know are Gokayama and Shirakawa.]

 

 

 

TL: A tannin dye made from persimmons TL: Temple schooling, like Monastery schooling in the west Knaus–Ogino method 

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