|Wolf and the Biggest Secret Scheme|
|Season 1, Episode 11|
|Written by||Isuna Hasekura|
|Directed by||Takeo Takahashi|
Wolf and the Swirling Plot
Wolf and a Group of Youngsters
Wolf and the Biggest Secret Scheme is the eleventh episode of the first season of Spice and Wolf.
Lawrence scrounges a few coins, but he has nowhere near enough to repay his debts. He attempts to give them to Holo as an apology for his earlier behavior, but she rejects them and chides Lawrence for being too nice and not blaming her for his situation. He tells her that he doesn't because she was there trying to help him, and feared he wouldn't be able to take back what he did. After clearing things up, Holo proposes a plan she came up with.
The next day, the pair go to Hans Remerio and lay out Holo's plan: gold smuggling. Since Remerio Company is nearly bankrupt and is also pressed for money, Holo drives Remerio into a corner by pointing out that she can hear his employees jumping ship one by one even as they speak. Remerio agrees to sponsor their scheme by purchasing the gold wholesale from pagan Lamtra that is going to be brought into Ruvinheigen, after which his company will use their channels and contacts to sell it and avoid the steep Church tariff, making back ten times the purchase price. In return, Remerio will postpone Lawrence's debt deadline until the transaction is complete, as part of Lawrence's take will be his payment.
Lawrence and Holo later meet with Nora after church services and tell her about their plan to smuggle gold in the stomachs of the sheep she will be given that day; she will be paid 20 Lumione gold coins, in essence hazard pay. The shortest path in between Lamtra and Ruvinheigen is through a forest considered to be dangerous, and only Nora has guided sheep there; her doing so again would not be suspicious. Lawrence points out how he realized, from what he knows of her, that the Church suspects her of supposedly having pagan powers, and it's how she has such a high success rate in not losing any sheep. The local clergy, which Lawrence angrily calls "lower than pigs" for their actions, will keep sending her to dangerous, high-risk areas to 'prove' their theory, and the only way they will be satisfied that she is not pagan is her being attacked by wolves or mercenaries one day, purposely putting her life at risk (a bit rather like a witch trial). Her payment would allow her to leave Ruvinheigen behind as she's always wanted, which would be safer to do so anyway once they successfully complete the job. After considering the unfair hardship her employers have put her through and how their paranoia has caused the citizens to largely shun her, she firmly agrees.