Roughly 10-minutes later, the back door to the private room that Daz and the blue-skinned employee were in opened up.
Big Bo squeezed himself through it then summoned a chair to sit on. He was entirely naked this time save for a small speedo as far as Daz could see.
Glancing at his employee, Big Bo said, "You can go now. I'll be speaking with young Daz here alone."
Bowing very humbled, the four-armed man replied, "Of course, Manager Relox." With that, he nodded politely to Daz then left the room.
"So, a speedo?" Daz asked with a raised eyebrow.
Big Bo laughed and scratched his chest. "I was swimming. I sat through a bunch of recordings of your planet's best athletes before the system's recent coming, and I must say, I'm impressed. Your variation of the human species is low in strength but is very high in intellect. How you lot managed to come up with so many effective methods to swim and train the ability to swim will never cease to amaze me."
Daz smiled. "Thanks for the praise."
Big Bo nodded then reached out to the empty space left of himself. He clenched his fist, and as if by magic, a banana the size of Daz's forearm appeared. He peeled it then began eating it as he grinned. "So, you're not satisfied with my offer?"
"Well, yeah, that, and the system gave me a quest to try to squeeze you dry," Daz admitted honestly.
If Big Bo was aware of his first quest, Daz had no reason to believe that such a powerful player wouldn't also be aware of the second one that related to him.
"I know. Well? What are the quest requirements? I'm willing to help you complete them to the letter today after a bit of negotiating. Of course, I won't give you a single thing more than the quest specifies. The damned system bent me backwards and humiliated my wisdom more than enough last time, hahaha," Big Bo heartily laughed. He then snapped his fingers, resulting in a suit appearing around his body which was complemented by his familiar pair of glasses.
"Well, the optional goal is to get you to give me an interest-free loan of five merit stars," Daz said with a smile.
Big Bo stroked his chin and nodded. "That's doable. It's not ideal, but it's certainly doable. And the main goal is...?"
Daz's smile turned into a smirk. "To make sure the deal is more favourable towards me than it is towards you."
Big Bo's face fell, then he held it in his massive hands. "That damned system... Of course it knew I'd say that I'd fulfil the quest rewards, so if I back out now, I'll look like a liar..."
'He's lying. He doesn't give a shit. Anyway, let's stir the pot a bit more, shall we?' Daz thought. He then leaned back in his chair and casually said, "By the way, Pheldorapod seems to want to get on my good side. He did a bunch of favours for me during the auction, and he's filthy rich, so I was considering getting in touch with him via the system or via my sister."
"Really?" Big Bo seemed sceptical. "The master of the Grand System Auction took an interest in you?"
"He's got sharp senses. I'm pretty sure he figured out that the system's got a thing for me," Daz said semi-jokingly. "Oh, also, Altros seems to be more invested in me too. Here." Daz pulled out the most recent letter he'd received from the arrogant original owner of his outfit. "I got that a few days ago and it seems like Altros edited it after the auction."
Big Bo skillfully opened the letter with his fingernails and read its contents carefully. "I see." He returned the letter to Daz then rubbed the bridge of his nose. "You're getting more and more shrewd as the days pass. I get it. I need to stay on your good side since I've got competition. Fine, so shoot me a counteroffer, okay, Daz?"
Smiling devilishly, the reaper replied, "Gladly."
|What [Botund Relox] will give [Daz]|
|Five free upgrades to each of the branches of the [Midechhe Travelling Bank] in the host [Daz]'s territories. Both existing and future branches will be included in this offer.|
|An interest-free loan of 5 merit stars (Must be paid back within 2-years after [Earth] completes its system-given tests).|
|What [Daz] will give [Botund Relox]|
|The exclusive rights to be the only bank that the host [Daz] may purchase for his bases (both present and future).|
|A system-sworn promise to never use threats as a bargaining tool ever again in negotiations with the host [Botund Relox].|
Big Bo sighed. "I can agree to that if you also swear to buy at least twenty branches of the Midechhe Travelling Bank within the next 5-years. If you can't do that, then I'll get your soul."
Daz immediately nodded. "Okay, but only if you can also swear to not try to fuck me over by saying that my 20% interest rate only applies to merit points, and not merit stars or solar credits."
Big Bo looked genuinely surprised for a second. "Ahahaha, you know about solar credits? And you saw my little loophole in our previous deal? Sure. I also made an oath with the system that'd I'd do that if you ever found out before actually trying to cash in on the interest of some merit stars."
He scratched his furry head as he ate another massive banana then said, "Honestly, if the system wasn't throwing me a bone, my boss would have fired me already. The bank stands to lose a lot of money from you since you've banned personal loans."
"Give me a better plan for loans instead of demanding my citizens' souls if they miss a payment. If you can't do that, then keep letting the system compensate you," Daz suggested.
"I've certainly been considering it. I'll get back to you on that, but for now, I agree to the deal in regards to the bank's upgrades," Big Bo said. "Enjoy your quest rewards and merit stars. I really have to get back to my important work."
'Swimming is important work?' Daz asked in thought before he nodded and stood up. "As always, it was nice chatting with you, Big Bo."
"Likewise, Daz," the red-furred gorilla answered with a grin on his face. 'I'm looking forward to his reaction when the next cycle begins... That'll be worth a whole banana farm...'
|Congratulations! You have successfully completed the side quest [Outsmarting An Ape II].|
|[Item Upgrade Token (Only usable on the host's [Negotiator's Ring])].|
|2,000,000 Merit Point.|
|Optional Goal Reward|
|A vital piece of advice in regards to the next testing cycle (Ask the system directly for this advice).|
Daz was now standing outside of the bank since he intended to use its five free upgrades immediately, but first, he slid his Negotiator's Ring off of his finger and used his newest token on it.
There was no confirmation screen like usual since the upgrade token literally only worked on his ring, unlike most other upgrade tokens which could be used on any item.
|Skilled Negotiator's Ring [B-Rank (Middle Tier)] [Up by one whole rank!]|
A higher quality and more expensive version of the far more common item [Negotiator's Ring]. It was manufactured by the Interuniversal Jewellery Corporation - or IJC for short. Its serial number is #2,342,321.
Due to the rarity of the ring, far fewer beings are able to recognise it at first glance without the use of a skill.
Yup, you read that serial number right. The system's an expansive thing, but it still falls a bit short in comparison to how expansive your thighs are. Maybe slow down on the massive meals, hmm?
|[New!] Luck:||50||Durability:||1,000/1,000 [+500]|
|Strong Aura of a Negotiator|
|Strong Aura of a Negotiator|
|The wearer shall be 15% [+10%] more likely to do well during any form of negotiations.|
It was a weak item when compared to most of his other equipment, but it was still easy to wear and very helpful in situations like the meeting he had just left as well as with court sessions.
Daz firmly put the ring back on his finger then pulled up the bank's information. Almost as soon as he had exited the building, he had used all five free upgrades on it.
|[Little] Midechhe Travelling Bank|
Owned and funded by the wealthiest associate of the system, Gioranne Midechhe.
This bank has only a single building, but, despite that, it has the ability to project itself anywhere that the system allows it and it can appear in multiple places at the same time.
Any self-respecting lord would purchase this bank over the other competitors. Gioranne Midechhe is the best and most reputable dealer and holder of merit points, so you can safely entrust your merit points to his establishment.
Ads in building descriptions are rare, but they're always fun to laugh at. That's something that people like you have in common with them, huh?
|Allows citizens to store merit points with an interest rate of 20% per day.|
Allows citizens to borrow from the bank at an interest rate of 15% [-15%] per day (this is a fixed rate that is based on the initial owed amount and does not factor in interest when applying additional interest).
Citizens will be sold as slaves to the system upon failure of repaying the borrowed after a cycle's worth of time has passed (Permission must be granted by the owner of the base the bank is placed within before a citizen may borrow from the bank).
|Allows citizens to donate their merit points to their respective base (the base is required to have unlocked the taxation feature for this benefit).|
|All beings that become official citizens of the host [Daz], shall be awarded 100,000 merit points.|
|[New!] Includes a savings account. Any money stored in the savings account will have the same interest rate applied to it as listed above, but the money cannot be accessed by the host unless the host first applies for said access in advance (this restriction is lifted if the host's life is dependant on the money in the savings account).|
While it only looked like there were two upgrades, in truth, these two had taken up all five free upgrades.
Daz wasn't allowed to upgrade the building's size with his five free upgrades, but that didn't matter to him.
The first thing he got was the savings account, then the second upgrade was to apply the regular interest rate to it, which would have resulted in the savings account earning him fewer points over time normally, but due to his special deal with Big Bo, this upgrade was incredibly beneficial to Daz and his people.
The biggest advantage the savings account offered was that it had a far larger upper storage limit. Daz had used his Secret Override on the bank itself not too long ago and discovered that the regular current account could only hold a maximum of ten merit stars or 1,000,000,000 merit points.
That was not a small sum of money, but from what Daz knew from his perusing of the system's store, once Earth overcame its 'trial period', that would be a very small sum of money to him as the ruler of the planet, assuming he successfully took over Earth, that was.
In contrast to that limit, a savings account could hold up to ten solar credits, and while Daz didn't know exactly what a solar credit was yet, he felt it was safe to assume it was 100,000,000 merit stars.
That alone made the upgrade worthwhile.
The third upgrade was to change the interest rate on the loan option from 30% to 25%, then the fourth was to go from 25% to 20%, then finally, from 20% to 15%.
By doing that, Daz was confident that he'd get a far more agreeable offer out of the big red gorilla when the time came to discuss changing the repayment nature of the loans.
In regards to Daz's merit points, he had stored his five interest-free merit stars in his personal account, while all of his loose merit points were shoved into his savings account.
"Even with five whole merit stars, I'm still not first for merit points?" Daz frowned. "Just what did you do to make so much money without even lifting a finger, Father?"
Daz reached into his pocket and pulled out the SSS-ranked Item Token that he had earned from becoming ranked as second on the merit ranking. He had no intention to use such a valuable object until he knew what the next cycle's focus would be, but he twirled it expertly between his fingers to help him think.
"Big Bo mentioned that Father had entered a deal with another powerful player, but that was after he'd almost interfered with the system... If he got his merit points from that, then how was he ranked first from day one?" the reaper asked himself.
Daz wasn't sure, the system wouldn't answer him, and his instincts gave him no insight into the matter, so he tucked his token away in his pocket then sighed heavily.
"System, show me the hint about the next cycle, please," he requested as he put his hands in his pocket and began walking towards the central fort's southern portcullis, which lead to the inner fort, with the clear intent of heading home.
He missed Madison and it was getting very late, so his plan was to learn the hint, have some 'fun' with Madison, then go to sleep. He'd have plenty of time to think in his dreamscape as Cecil trained him, after all.
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