Instructor Kisa’s lecture continued.
“Dragons are fond of raw meat in general. However, many years of research have proven that without exception, they strongly prefer Shana beef.”
I knew about that.
Everyone in Ryukoku knew about it.
Shana cows were giant cows that were raised in the Shana region. Adults grew up to be as heavy as 800 kilograms.
They were incredibly delicious and were sold in the market as a luxury food item. However, most people thought of them as food for the dragons.
For some reason, the dragons really liked the Shana beef. If they had to eat anything else, it would take a larger amount to satisfy them.
In other words, they would consume much more food.
As the cost of food was one of the biggest problems that faced a Dragon Master, most people just fed them the Shana beef.
There were vast farmlands to the southeast of the Royal Capital, and the Shana cows were raised there.
“The small dragons will be satisfied with one cow every 30 days. Of course, that is still a lot.”
You had to buy a whole Shana cow every month.
The price of a single Shana cow was the same as what the average person made in a year.
So you had to have a Patron in order to avoid going bankrupt.
“Dragon Masters who are in the military will, of course, be paid a salary. And that is much more than what the average person makes. However, it is still not enough to keep a dragon.”
That was why the Patron system was put in place.
“Aside from the cost of food, the armor you wear and the tools used in the dragon stable will also cost money. You will also need to hire a caretaker. Dragon Masters will also have to make public appearances. There will be occasions when you will require ornaments or have to send gifts. You will hardly be able to pay for all of this on your own.”
As a Patron was someone who would be your partner for life, we all understood their importance already.
I was wondering why she was telling us something so obvious. But then she continued.
“Patrons are managed by the country. Of course, your own wishes on the matter are heard. However, those who are less than friendly towards the country, and people who are criminals will not be able to register.”
She paused for a second and scanned the room.
“But one new and important rule has been added this year. It has not been made public yet, but word will be sent from the Royal Castle within a few months.”
Several mutterings of ‘What? Really?’ and ‘I knew it’ could be heard.
As for me, I had no idea what it could be.
“Recently, the ‘Dragon Master Fund’ has been established. This allows many Patrons to sponsor a single Dragon Master. However, it has since been discovered that many of these people have intentions that are quite different than just offering support. And so these funds will be banned. As for existing funds, they will be disbanded.”
Upon hearing these words, a few of my classmates seemed to slump in their chairs.
What? Dragon Master Fund?
And so I asked Ark about it during recess.
“The Dragon Master Fund is a gathering of people who want to support a Dragon Master together.”
As I had no knowledge of the matter, I didn’t really understand.
“I think it was 3 years ago. A certain Dragon Master came up with the idea. Every month, the Patron has to deliver the money to the country. But you can also pay in advance. A year or even five years.”
“I see. But I doubt anyone has so much money that they can do that.”
“Yeah. And so they gathered people together. They said that you could become a Patron for the price of just one Shana cow.”
“With just that… Well, I suppose it could work if enough people joined.”