“How can this house of which you speak,” asked Kuurus
“How can this house of which you speak,” asked Kuurus, “undersell so consistently? Is it that the number of slaves is so great that the profit taken on each is less?”
“I have thought long on it,” said Portus, “and that cannot be all of it. I know this business well, the costs of information, organization, planning, acquisition, transportation and security, the care and feeding and training of the animals, the guards, the costs of the auctions, the taxes on sales, the deliveries to distant cities—and the staff of the house I speak of is large, skilled and highly paid—and their facilities are unparalleled in the City, both in size and appointments. They have interior baths which could rival the pools even of the Capacian Baths.”
Portus nodded in puzzlement.
“No,” said Portus, “they must have sources of gold other than the income on their merchandise.”
Portus pushed one finger around in a puddle of splashed paga on the low table.
“I thought for a time,” he said, “that they intended to sell at a radical loss until the other slave houses were forced to close, and then to recoup their losses with profit by setting their own prices—but then when I considered again the gold which sponsored the games and races honoring the men who were to become Administrator and High Initiate, I decided it could not be. I am convinced the house of which I speak has major sources of gold other than the income on their merchandise.”
Kuurus did not speak.
Assassin of Gor, p. 31