The boat traveled the sea for several days before reaching the Water Country.
The Country was far from the mainland and surrounded by the sea. It was mainly formed of several islands.
Because of its location and lack of communication with the outside world, exchanges with other countries relied on maritime trade.
That was the main source of income for the country as well. Because it was surrounded by fish-rich waters, many merchants bartered said fish with all sorts of other goods and necessities.
At any given time, dozens of other ships were sailing the sea around Jiraya’s.
Because there were just too many ships going in and out of the country, the Ninjas responsible of monitoring them were not too serious. They usually just glanced at them then let them pass.
Jiraya’s ship entered the Water Country’s territory, and Ryo could see the dense fog hidden land.
The ship docked at the port, with around fifty to sixty other ships docked around it. The shore was also very lively.
It was hard to believe that all of this was happening while a war was going on.
Jiraya led by example, and he and Ryo pretended to act like rich men, holding their bellies and marching arrogantly followed by their assistants, and they got off the boat.
Just after getting off, a few people with Mist Forehead Protectors surrounded them. Jiraya told Ryo not to move.
The ninjas came and acted very politely, talking with the two casually. As they thought that they were rich merchants, they were acting respectfully.
After these Ninjas left, Jiraya said to Ryo: “Most of the Ninjas patrolling here are Chunins, instructed to treat wealthy merchants politely.”
“Why? Shouldn’t the businessmen be cautious facing Ninjas as they are carrying money?” Ryo did not understand.
“Dummy, these businessmen are the most important source of income for this country. In other words, they are the ones feeding the Ninjas. If one of these Chunins happen to offend a businessman with their bad attitude, it could cause huge losses to the Water Country.
Hearing Jiraya’s explanation, Ryo realized that in this country the Rich were bossing Ninjas around.
Civilians were the ones to become Ninjas, and the gap between classes kept this way going.
The purpose of this trip was to collect information from the Mist Village, so Jiraya’s method was indeed the best and most direct way to sneak in.
However, the Mist Village was heavily guarded. Ryo notices some sort of boundary all around it. If the two were to force their way in, they would definitely be discovered.
Not just Ryo noticed that, Jiraya, as a veteran intelligence collector, obviously knew about it. But he didn’t seem worried, wondering around the country with Ryo.
After making a big lap around, he seemed to learn some things. Then he took Ryo to the biggest hotel near the Mist Village.
Ryo also thought about that. After all, hotels are some of the best places to gather information, as they are filled with all kinds of people.
However, he didn’t expect that they would just sit down in a room, with Jiraya ordering a full table of food.
“This is too much!” Ryo looked at the dishes on the table.
“What do you know? Just keep quiet and eat. It won’t be long before someone takes us into the Mist Village.” Jiraya said to Ryo.
Ryo was a bit confused. But seeing that Jiraya was confident, he didn’t object again, and just took chopsticks and started eating.
Jiraya had ordered the most expensive dishes on the menu, and the water country, being rich in sea food, had great seafood dishes.
Ryo in his past life was from the north. In this life, he had eaten a lot of seafood in Konoha, but hadn’t tasted such good seafood ever since crossing to this world.
Jiraya let him eat, so he wasn’t about to act polite.
So many things have been ordered, things that are too expensive. The hotel owner was thrilled, as such good guests are rare.
Of course, the owner himself was no poor, being able to open such a large hotel.
This hotel actually had quite the reputation in the Water Country, as it was specialized in receiving distinguished guests. Nevertheless, such generous guests were still rare.
So, the hotel owner personally went upstairs, planning to say hello to the “businessmen”.
“Knock Knock..” Jiraya looked at the feasting Ryo, signaling him to continue, and then said: “Please come in!”
The owner pushed the door and entered. He looked at the starving Ryo with surprise before looking away, before sitting in front of his two guests.
Ryo gave him a look full of distain, and the owner felt that Ryo was indeed no ordinary person.
“Hello and welcome my guests! I’m the owner of this hotel, Yamada Nagakyu.” The owner greeted the two.
Jiraya looked back at him and squeezed out a smile; he said faintly: “Yamanada dono, I’m Sanfune.”
“Oh Sanfune san, I don’t recognize the name, where are you from?” The owner proceeded to ask.
“I’m groom the Iron Country, and my fellow here is from the Rain Country.”
Hearing the names of those countries, Yamada breathed a sigh of relief. Those countries were not in war with his, so they can make good deals in here.
The two continued to talk, about the Iron Country’s geographical location, customs, military politics, etc…
Everything Jiraya said was consistent with what Yamada knew about the Iron Country. So the latter went for one final question.
“Sanfune san, it is also said that during the 2nd world war, the General of the Land of Iron once defeated the legendary Hanzo of the Salamander, I don’t know if this is…”
“HEY!” Jiraya put on a angry face and stood up saying: “I don’t know where you got such rumors. For a Samorai, pride is more important than life! Mifune sama lost to Hanzo, and never claimed otherwise. He just survived! You should not listen so such heinous rumors that insult Mifune sama’s reputation!”
Thinking that Jiraya was really angry, Yamada quickly said: “I’m sorry, Sanfune san! It’s just a thing I heard, please don’t be angry!”
Seeing Jiraya’s reaction and behavior, Yamada completely believed his identity.
After finally appeasing the “furious” Jiraya, Yamada quickly asked his about what he wanted to buy.
Jiraya didn’t hesitate to say that the purpose of this trip was to buy rare metals used to craft Kubikiribocho.
Yamada was stunned, he knew that this was a big customer, but he just didn’t expect him to be thing big.
He felt that this was an opportunity. He knew the metal used to forge that blade and that there were still some reserves of it in the Mist Village. He also knew that they wanted to sell some of them.
Thinking of that, Yamada quickly said: “Sanfune san, I know the right place for you to go. I can give you a referral to help you make this purchase. But the money…”
Jiraya put on a doubtful look, and stared at Yamada for quite some time. Then, he hesitantly took out a few bags and opened the smallest one.
Yamada had seen many gems during his lifetime, and at the 1st glace he could recognize that these were very valuable.
“After the perchase is complete, this will be yours.” Jiraya acted a bit regretful.
Hearing that sentence, Yamada got all excited, and immediately promised insuring the success of this trade.