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Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Felicia's Second Life Chapter 1

Chapter 1: My Noble Family Is Poor?

Good day, my name is Felicia Belphere Metrune. I am the only daughter of Baron Alphonse Lartes Metrune, who rules the Barony of Mruna. My mother's name is Baroness Latreia Tullenaris, formerly of the house Melstad.

But I haven't always been a baron's daughter.

I was previously Malcolm Stokes, 29 years old. I once lived in Cornwall. As my name may have suggested, I was once a man.

You guessed it, I reincarnated.

Have I always known that I reincarnated into such a cute girl? No, not really. I only recalled my former life bit by bit starting from the day I turned 6. I was told that I fell into a coma for a week when that happened. I guess the memories of two lifetimes was too much for a little girl's brain to cope.

You're wondering how I died in my first life? No no, I didn't die of old age, or of illness. I got hit by a truck. Before being hit by that truck, I was a very healthy young man. Relatively young, at least.

That truck was so OP that it sent my soul straight to another world.

But now because of that truck, I am quite a healthy little girl. Well, healthy as could be for someone born into what appears to be middle age Europe. Not that this is Europe. The names are all wrong.

"My lady, the first bunch of crops are ready for harvest. Would you like to visit your farm, my lady?" a little girl of the same age as me enquired.

Her name is Lilicia, it seems like we have been playmates since we were babies.  At first glace, you would be forgiven to think that we are twins, but in actuality, we aren't even related.

We do have similar faces, same skin tone and we're both about the same height, with her being a couple of inches taller. We also have brown hair, but that's where the similarity ends. Although we both have brown hair, mine is of a lighter shade while hers is a little darker. Our eyes are also of different colours. Mine are blue like the waters of the Mrun River. Hers are green the same colour of young forest leaves.

We do live in the same house. That has nothing to do with being related. It's simply that her mother is our family's maid and she's trained to become my personal attendant.

Just like her, I am now 7 years old. The incident where I fell into a coma happened a year ago. When I woke up and saw the state of my family's barony, I felt sick.

The crops weren't doing well. There was little farmland to work with. The mines were closed down. The baron's mansion was in shambles. And our army consisted of one knight. If bulls could talk, just a single bull was enough to demand our surrender.

Confronted with this disgraceful poverty, I, who came from the modern era couldn't accept that at all. So I went ahead and made some changes, subtle ones that wouldn't be noticed. I also asked my father, the baron, for a piece of farmland. He refused at first, stating that we already had a family farm.

I think father was probably swayed a bit when mother said, "Fufufu, it's good to be so determined. What's the harm in letting her do what she wants?"

So after days of begging and using my moist doe eyes on my father, he finally agreed on the condition that I didn't work it myself. I was happy of course, until I had a look at the farmland father gave me. Calling it a farmland was like saying all lions were just oversized kitten. It was so terribly barren than even weed wouldn't grow there if it had a choice. It had been rendered useless after generations of farming. Sure, being that it was 100 acres in size, it was big. It was at least twice bigger than even the family farm that we had.

Father must've thought to shut me up and gloat when I gave up. I would not give up, challenge accepted. This land will be the most fertile farmland in all the barony soon. I will make sure father eats his grin.

"Sure, let's go," I said as we set off towards the piece of farmland that father gave me.

It took us only about half an hour to reach the farmland on foot. On the way, Lili, my companion updated me on the progress of the farm. It seemed like with the new oxen-driven deep plough that I 'invented', they were able to till a lot more strips of land than they previously could with a hoe.

"Waa, that's beautiful," I said looking at the green leaves of the turnips on a long strip of farmland that was at least 10 times longer than its width.

The strips of tilled fields were about as long as half a mile. In the distance, I could see one boy leading the ox that I borrowed from father while another boy stood on the plough, providing some mass to assist in driving the plough into the soil.

"My lady, you are here!" said the oldest boy in the group when he looked up from harvesting some turnips.

"Good morning, Lemy. How's my turnip farm?"

"It's grown well, my lady. The root bulb is a little small, but I guess it's what you get from such a barren land. My mother has gotten a knack for cooking the leaves now, though. Thank you for allowing us to take the leaves home before this."

"It's fine, the leaves would go yellow if you don't cut it anyway. Wasn't expecting so many turnips, though."

"We had a lot of seeds from last year, my lady. Some failed, but most become as you see."

"What of the second and third fields?"

"We believe it's ready for barley and wheat planting, my lady. Fourth and fifth fields should be ready for planting by the start of winter."

"Very good, get right to it after you've harvested the turnips. How about the irrigation ditches I told you to dig?"

Unlike ploughing, there wasn't much that could be done to improve digging ditches. I used the same oxen-driven plough to break up the soil so that it would be easier for the boys to dig. Despite the assistance of the plough, it took five boys a couple of months to dig half of the planned length.

"It's almost done, my lady, but what are you planning to do with it? You said it is to irrigate the land, but couldn't we just dig a well?"

"Hehe, you'll see. The end is close to the river, I hope?"

"Yes, the end is right by the river, my lady."

"Excellent! Let's go see the place," I said, as I dragged my two childhood friends over to the place in question.

A month later, a water pump powered by a waterwheel was built on that site. It regularly supplied water to my formerly barren land without the need for a single labourer. It instantly allowed the same amount of people to work on more land as they no longer needed to go back and forth to the river or community well to carry water. By the start of spring, I was able to plant in four patches of farmland, the fifth wasn't ready on time.

*Felicia's Personal Diary Age 7*


"My lady, please try out these carrots," one of the workers, a 9 year old boy called Rusel (roo-sel) suggested as he pushed forth a basket filled with newly harvested carrots.

"Rusel, what are you doing giving Lady Felicia unwashed carrots?" Lili grabbed one of the better shaped carrots and washed it in the closest ditch before offering it to me.

Lili really knew me well, I thought as I chomped on the narrow end of the carrot.

"Oh, this is sweet. The colour and shape is good too. Do you want to have a taste, Lili?" I asked as I offered her the same slightly chomped carrot.

"Th-thank you, but please enjoy yourself, my lady," she replied with a stutter.

Her face was a little red, I wonder why? She kept going red in the face from time to time ever since we turned 8 years old, did I do something to make her mad? I hope not, she had been my closest friend for most of my second life.

While chomping on the carrot, like a certain rabbit from Warner Bros production, I surveyed the land that was given to me by father. It took me almost 3 years, but that barren land had now become a fertile farmland. My secrets? Leaf composting, irrigation, oxen-driven ploughs, mechanical seed drills and four-field rotation. Though, now that I had 7 fields, the balance went a little off. I emphasized more on cash crops, like wheat, tomatoes, carrots and beans. Though the year previous, I emphasized more on soil-improving crops, such as turnips, clover and beans.

I was sure there were still plenty that could be improved, it wasn't like I was a farmer in my previous life. However, my farm had become so successful that father even said that I should be paying him land rent starting next summer. He laughed as if he was joking, but even if he was serious, I thought paying him land rent would be quite justified. I did after all, have the biggest and most fertile farmland in the entire barony.

I shared my secrets with the serfs, of course. I wasn't at all selfish. However, I could tell they only politely did as I suggested because I was the daughter of the baron. Of course, that's understandable. Who would seriously listen to an 8 year old girl's advice on farming? To them, my friends and I must've looked like we were merely playing with dirt, like most children.

My friends or workers, depends on your point of view, still work with their parents. Since I was the daughter of the baron, their parents had to allow their children to accompany me. Otherwise, I'd probably be doing this on my own.

All that changed when I stacked what appeared to be enough food to feed the whole town for a year in the town square at the end of spring. It was so much that the merchant had to come back in three weeks instead of once per season. By the time he came back three weeks later, it was time for wheat harvest. He had to hold off purchasing my grains because he didn't have enough goods to barter with.

Unlike the modern world, coinage wasn't in daily use. As payment for labour, the serfs were paid in foodstuff, such as grains or a portion of the harvested crops. The serfs rarely hold but only a few small copper coins for their entire life. Then again, even those copper coins were rarely in use in backwater places such as the Barony of Mruna. We traded mostly through barter. Only big cities like Renus and the kingdom's capital of Forlen use coins in their daily lives.

So because I was unexpectedly successful, I had to build my own granary on my land to store all the wheat grains and other crops that I couldn't sell. And it just kept adding up with every season. Maybe I should cut down on all this farming, but what to do with all the serfs that came begging for work?

*Felicia's Personal Diary 8 Years Old*

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  1. Why don't you put up a link to the next chapter?

  2. Why don't you put up a link to the next chapter?

    1. You're right. It will definitely make it easier to read continuously. I'll fix that as soon as I'm done with the job I'm currently doing.

  3. I though cash crops are the crops that cannot be eaten like cotton?

    1. Not always. Like sugarcane, they can be eaten, but they have more value as trade goods than for local consumption. In the medieval world, commoners plant wheat, but they don't normally consume them. They consume barley mostly and trade their wheat away. Thanks for your comment. Please keep reading.


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