- 9:17 AM
Ryūnosuke Naruhodō and Susato Mikotoba are in the Chief Justice's office to give a full report on winning the case about Sōseki Natsume. Some unpleasant noise is heard mixed with the pleasant clockwork. An exhausted Tobias Gregson appears with Hart Vortex, the chief justice is timing the detective who runs away. Vortex already heard Barok van Zieks' report about the case, he expresses his gratitude to the two for winning. Gregson is searching for the book entitled The Adventure of the Lion's Mane, Vortex thought it was very popular but he gave up on reading it. So he slipped it in one of his bookshelves but can't remember where he put it and he needs to return it to the store before the due date. Vortex timing Gregson is just his cruel amusement. Time runs out and Gregson loses his rights to his salary and days off for the next month!
Hart Vortex has every book about the law since the history of books. No one bought books when Tobias Gregson was a kid due to them being expensive due to the Paper Tax. Even though it was abolished thirty years it was quite high. That was why they had books lenders instead of stores. Naruhodō remembers that Natsume avoided Window Tax by filling his windows with bricks. Even though the Window Tax was abolished forty years ago there are still some house at the East End without windows, England has a habit of taxing everything, even beards. Naruhodō vows to make his clan never grow beards. Even though taxes were abolished, England seems to be fond of paying ridiculous taxes, unlike Japan. But Susato reveals that the Edo period had a frontage tax. It was about entryways resulting in not many narrow ways seen around. It turns Japanese were forbidden of growing beards by the Bakufu. I was called the Great Beard Ban during the Edo period. Even in the Meiji period had strange laws before Naruhodō and Susato were even born, like the rabbit tax. The capital city was hit by a rabbit boom, some people got bankrupt after a colored rabbit fraud, that resulted in the tax. The backlash to the appeal of that tax was a second rabbit boom that ravished the capital.
Vortex and Gregson agree that these are to prevent money obsession in their occupations. Vortex has Naruhodō pretend he was chief justice, with the help of Susato, Naruhodō suggest an air law for breathing. Vortex reveals that tax was already drafted by the French Minister of Finance during the previous century but it ended up scrapped. Gregson would tax objections due to Naruhodō.
Now Vortex wants Naruhodō to look for The Adventure of the Lion's Mane in ten minutes or else he'll have to forfeit next month's exchange student stipend. Naruhodō says Objection!, which causes Vortex to tell him to put five pence somewhere.
References to Popular CultureEdit
- There wasn't really any kind of "Paper Tax", but the Stamp Act of 1712 taxed published papers, particularly newspaper.
- The Window tax was introduced in 1696 and abolished in 1851. There was a flat-rate house tax of two shillings per house and a variable tax for the number of windows above ten windows in the house.
- The Beard tax was introduced by King Henry VIII of England. His daughter, Queen Elizabeth I of England, reintroduced it but it wasn't heavily enforced that time.
- The frontage tax was part of another tax known as kariage(借上) which varied with profession. This was an additional tax introduced at certain times, especially in times of financial crisis during the Edo Period.
- Samurai were taxed based on their fief income, peasants based on net agricultural product after "normal" taxes, townsmen based on the size of the frontage of their house, and fishermen based on the size of their boat.
- Bakufu, also known as the Shogunate, forced samurai to the have higes (beards) or else they'd be made fun of.
- Originally, only hares were native to Japan. Rabbits were imported by New Zealand and later bred with hares to create the signature white rabbit of Japan.
- Due to the breeding, a rabbit boom and tax were levied between 1873 and 1879.