Eugene walked through the hallways, the clicking sound of her heels echoing with every step as she made her way to the president of the bank. In her hands was the documents she had received, and she decided it was high time to return them to their rightful place.
Once she arrived at her destination, the president immediately made time to meet with her, and gratefully accepted the documents.
“While I’m here, I wanted to ask if there was anyone who came by with a check for my account while the documents were with me?” she asked him.
He shook his head. “No, Your Majesty.”
“I see, and who’s in charge of your withdrawal procedures?”
“I have a staff in charge of the withdrawal procedures, but for your account, Your Majesty, I take full responsibility.”
“Really?” She blinked. “All the time?”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
“How about the people who bring in the checks? Do you remember who they are?” she asked curiously.
He appeared to be recalling it, before nodding resolutely.
“Yes, Your Majesty, I recall only three people repeatedly withdrawing with your checks.” He informed her. He went as further as describing their outward appearance to the best of his ability. And by his description, Eugene realized none of them was Rodrigo.
He must’ve sent one of his men instead of going himself.
“Was there a particular order in which they came in?” she asked.
“If my memory serves me correctly… they came based on the amount of withdrawal, Your Majesty.”
Eugene remembered there were two types of gold coins that existed in Mahar. The first type was those cast by the priests, and the second the six kingdoms.
Gold coins cast by priests held the highest values. One of their coins amounted to around one million in Eugene’s world. With a value so high, it was rarely used as an everyday currency, and instead, was usually used whenever issuing checks.
She listened further to his observations.
Every withdrawal amounted to a range of ten to more than a hundred gold coins. The first withdrawal ranged from ten or fewer gold coins. The second was around ten to a hundred, and the last more than a hundred gold coins.
Eventually, the president must’ve felt he’d done something wrong, for he began to fidget in her presence, giving her uneasy looks, which pulled her out of her thoughts as she paid attention to him once more.
“Forgive me, Your Majesty, but has there been a discrepancy in your withdrawals?”
He was used to the queen barely batting an eye on what happened to her accounts, that her sudden interest in them made him extremely uneasy. He only did his job, after all. If a problem had indeed occurred under his management, he could only imagine the repercussions.
The least he could be punished with was unemployment.
“Oh no, there’s nothing wrong.” Eugene assured him. “I just wanted to know if I were to freeze my account for the time being, can the bank refuse to fund any incoming checks?”
She was planning to cut access to all the money Rodrigo was taking from her. It would be a huge disadvantage to the heretics, especially if she assumed correctly they were greatly dependent on her money…
Or rather, the money Jin provided them with.
It would definitely be much harder for them to suddenly tighten their belts when they finally realize they have been spending loftily rather than saving up because it was then that they would know they only had a little funding left.
At the moment, Eugene was unable to contact them as she wished. She also didn’t have any idea on how to figure out what exactly their relationship with Jin truly was.
For now, the best thing she could do was to flush them out, by cutting off funding.
“Of course, Your Majesty, you can do whatever you wish for as it is your account,” he said, even trying to laugh it off as something menial.
But she could see he was already sweating profusely in his nervousness.
Three years ago, when he first met the queen to receive a deposit, he had etched in his head that the queen was someone merciless when pestered.
As a banker who had decades of experience, he’s confident in his first impressions of people. That is why he was cautious with his words as he spoke with the queen.
“Please, speak freely.” Eugene insisted, “Is there a problem?”
Seeing her earnest expression, he finally eased up a little, before letting out a dejected sigh…
“For a bank to refuse an issued check… well, it can lead to serious complications, Your Majesty.” He regretfully informed her.
“Is there really no other way to prevent further withdrawals from my account?”
The bank president struggled for a moment as he tried to find a way to explain without risking to anger the queen.
“You can withdraw your entire balance from your current account.” He eventually began. “But if we do that, my queen, your credibility to the bank will be damaged. There’s also the fact that the person who you issued a check to could sue you, which would cause a great deal of trouble.” He finished.
There wasn’t much shame to be incurred should it become public, but it would bring great dishonor. And for nobles, honor was more precious than life itself.
The president could only imagine the ramifications of such a scene for the queen. Just thinking about it made him feel faint.
“Don’t worry, if there’s a problem, I will take care of it,” she confidently claimed, such that the bank couldn’t dare refuse her demand anymore. To make a fuss out of it would attract only unwanted attention. “Can this be done immediately?” she asked.
The president subsequently nodded.
“Yes, Your Majesty, right away.”
Immediately he processed her demands, and soon Eugene was able to withdraw her entire account.
Eugene took her private funds out of her previous account and deposited them into a new one. Typically, clients who used Mahar’s national bank were recognized by the public as the wealthy upper class. Lower classes could not even afford the minimum deposit required by the bank to open an account.
Therefore, for the citizens who lived day-by-day by the sweat of their brows, the funds existing in their accounts would be but a small fortune.
However, as it stands, if someone did have enough money to make a deposit, the bank would hardly deny them to make an account, even without proof of identity, or even under a false name. The security for such a situation was rather lax.
And so she made a new account, not under Jin Anika’s name, but hers, Eugene. Her own signature was now jotted down on the documents, not Jin’s personal seal. She felt a surge of pride seeing all that money under her name.
No one in Mahar would even recognize it as hers. Despite the amount being halved in just three years, she still thought it suitable to live a life of luxury.
Either way, it’s good to have a back-up plan.
Even if she were to lose her position, even if it had nothing to do with how she handled the palace affairs, and lose everything she now enjoyed…
This money I won’t lose, she thought to herself in reassurance, staring intently at the thick piece of paper reflecting her balance.
“Thank you, you’ve done well,” she said to the bank president, “You are dismissed.”