If someone were to say that the most important job of the logistics department was to perform ‘replenishment’, I doubt I could deny it. It was obvious if you were to look at history and at war simulation games that the way a country most usually lost a war was running out of supplies. And to perform replenishment, one also had to consider how to transport the supplies.
“How does the army transport the supplies to the front line? Do they do it by horse?”
Although I can’t call this world completely medieval, it is a world of fantasy with magic after all.
Because the human force was already able to fly in the sky, they would most likely have railways too. However, I suppose the demon side doesn’t have such mode of transportation. That was why, even if I am not familiar with such a fantasy world, on Earth we also used horse-drawn carriages as a ways of transportation in early wars.
“There is that, but, we do have magic storage…”
“Magic storage. Is there such a thing?!”
The strongest magic showed up! We can win if it is like this.
In game worlds, there exists a magic that can store huge amount of weapons, armors, consumables and similar. Such storage magic was called “item box” or “inventory”. Even in a novel, despite there being a basic transportation, it often solved the protagonist transport problem in one stroke. If we have dragons or wyvern, we can use them as transport strategy by air, in exchange for planes.
“How much can we store goods inside of such magic?”
“Hmm, let’s see. Depending on the users, but, if it was Elf Archmage, they could store around 260,000 Ribla.”
“… Haa, Ribla, Ribla I see… Ribla, what is that?”
“It is a unit of weight, don’t you know it?”
Well, since the world is different, I guess the way to measure weight could also be different. Based on Sofia-san’s explanation, Ribla is a unit of weight while Jaldo, Maira, and Inke are units of length. Ribla is based on the weight of wheat and Jaldo is based on the height of her majesty Hell Arche’s body.
Then to accurately measures the weight and length of an object, there was the super convenient thing called ‘identification magic’. Even those who cannot use magic could roughly make an estimation, and someone like her majesty could actually accurately measures the number down to the decimal point. Also, identification magic has another function that is similar to that of an encyclopedia, which tells the name of an object and its description. However, that magic could work only if the object was already known to the demonkind.
Now, let us return to the main subject. Because Sofia-san magic lesson was limited, I asked her to perform identification magic on myself. From there I could convert it into the metric system. Well, height aside, I think I generally can guess my weight.
“Akira-sama is… Height is around 1.8 Jaldo, and weight is about 130 Ribla.”
“… Ah, I see… I can mostly understand…”
This is basically yard/pound method. In many ways, this was very annoying. Some mistakes could happen in space just because of difference in measurement. W-Well, I guess I’ll introduce metric system in the future… <EDN: See this http://articles.latimes.com/1999/oct/01/news/mn-17288>
The capacity for magic storage performed by Elf Archmage being around 260,000 Ribla, converted to metric system units would be around 120 tons. From here we need to calculate the amount of goods needed by the troops per day. Because depending on the race the numbers would be different, I think I should generalize them as a human for now, since I only knew about humans.
Water consumed by a soldier on daily basis was about 200 liters, that include drinking waters and waters for daily life.
There was a magic to refine water, but to utilize such magic we need someone able to use magic. If we assumed such magic user is not present in battle, it would be hard to get clean water depending on the location.
Even if we cut down on the use of water for daily uses, providing only water for drinking, a human needs 3 liters of water per day. Even if we only include half of the food, it would still become a huge burden for front-line magic users. And not to mention any unit without magic users.
And of course, since soldiers are not zombies, they need food. Each day, a soldier needs around 2 kilos of food. Together with drinking water, the total needed would be around 3 to 4 kilos. To raise morale, we would also need to provide some luxury items such as sweets, tobacco, coffee, and alcohol.
And since these people were soldiers, they need equipment and consumables. Golem aside, these soldiers would also need clothes and other necessities including tools to maintain their equipment.
Together with all of those supplies, we also had to think about the packaging. There was the possibility of handing over raw meat and weapons on the front line just like that by the archmage. But even with that possibility, I still feel troubled.
There was no vinyl products or Styrofoam, forget about canned food. They packed the supplies using wooden boxes and bottles, which was heavy and bulky. And there was a limit as to how much we could warp supplies with paper or leaves.
Adding all of that, the weight of supplies each soldier would need would be around 10 kilos.But the amount here was calculated based on how much human would need, the demon soldiers might need less or even more. And also, unfortunately, the amount I’ve calculated was for per ‘person’, and per ‘day’.
“Sofia-san, do you know how much troops are being dispatched to the front line?”
“Depending on the unit.”
“Average is fine…”
“… Let see… Let us take an example from demon army deployed in the Al Qaa plateau, there is three division there. One division is about 10,000 to 12,000 men.”
“I see, around 30,000 men then…”
The total amount of goods needed for 30,000 men in one day would be around 450 tons. One Elf archmage could carry 120 tons of goods by using storage magic. Which means we only need four people to support the 30,000 troops! Can such possibility be real?!
“Sofia-san, how many Elf archmage exist?”
“Only a few of them. We could count them with just one hand.”
As expected, it is not that easy!
It would be a trouble even for me if there were so many such archmages, and in the first place only a few existed. We didn’t have an exact number.
Based on Sofia-san explanation there was no particular restriction when using storage magic, thus assigning those archmages to the transportation unit would be quite great. However, although the situation would turn easy because of it, the fundamental problem was not being addressed. And furthermore, we can’t use archmage just for transportation either. They were people that were needed to perform magic on a scale that I could not imagine. Although the storage magic was also one of them. Should I use such archmage to perform transportation mission?
No one dared to convert battleship Yamato into a carrier, no matter how much Japan needed a carrier during the world war 2. The battleship Ise was used as a cargo ship because at the time it was already entered the end of the war.
“It seems there is no other choice but to ask the research and development department to try and develop an innovative transport technology while we use the current traditional one…”
“I think that would be the best course of action. … By the way, Akira-sama, may I ask one thing?”
“Well, why are we talking about the transportation in the first place? Just until a while ago, we’re discussing about the Golem is it not?”
“Ah, it’s not like I forgot about that. Or rather, for that reason I talked about improving the transportation.”
“What do you mean?”
“In other words, I want to sell favors to the transportation units…”
During the meeting, we’ve failed to have a proper discussion. From the first glance, it looked like it was because negative sentiment that I was a human being, but there seems to be another reason. In other words, the unspoken words that they wanted to maintain the ‘traditional method’ rather than the unproven reform proposals. No matter which world, that kind of thought always stand in the way of reform.
I guess it is also natural for them to think like that. Since they don’t actually feel any trouble with the traditional way, they think that it would be more comfortable than experiencing the hardship of reform.
What should I do to make such people(although they were technically not people) believed in me?
The answer was easy. And that would be showing achievements.
Logistics reform is not something that I can do overnight. Even after 365 days and nights, there might be not much of difference to be seen.
“This is why, since we can’t improve everything overnight, I’ve decided to do persuasion by proving myself. At the same time I need to make some friends.”
“So this is the reason for the transportation improvement?”
“I wonder, is there anything that could produce quick results…”
No, it is not good for me to think like that. I need to steadily improve the logistics department, not for some fancy military gains.
“Well, for now, let us do what we can. Some ideas will spring along the way. I guess I should inspect the warehouses located in this demon lord castle”