Translator: Lore_Temple (foxaholic.com)
“And those real gamblers are not stupid idiots.
Unless it’s a very great acting performance, you’ll be noticed in no time.
It means that the odds won’t go up that much if you postpone it like that.”
Clumsy smoke work doesn’t work.
I mean, my acting in the preliminary round was really so clumsy?
Well, it was a little overkill.
Even thinking about it now, rolling the ground was a bit excessive.
Don’t roll on ground, you’ll won’t get hit by a sword but also not earn a single loaf of bread.
I felt a little sad on realising my low talent.
“Again, let’s say you were lucky and succeeded.
You made a lot of money by playing pranks.
But what about those who lost money in those pranks? Take yourself, are you going to just leave the guy who was playing with you and your wealth?”
After saying that, old man Stanley took another sip of the ale.
I organized his words and opened my mouth.
“So, you’re saying that one has to be good enough to show a breathtaking performance against the contestants, has acting senses that is good enough to deceive those ‘real’ gamblers, and doesn’t have to worry about the repercussions after you eat other’s money?”
“…well, you’re right, but…”
“Then that’s it.”
I picked up the glass of ale and gulped it all down my throat.
Stanley and Annie looked at me with absurd expressions.
“…even so, I won’t bet on you anymore.”
Annie narrowed her eyes as she said.
* * *
“Aggh, didn’t I say I wouldn’t?”
“No, this is really the last time.
Yes, last time.”
“This lady, hah…”
Old man Stanley looked at Annie, who was holding a piece of paper, with an expression of incredibility.
“W, Why are you looking at me like that?! It may not be known to the elderly, but to me, life is at stake!”
“If it’s about money, didn’t you make quite a lot of money yesterday? Because I made twice my money.”
“Does my life makes a big difference if I earn that much money? Even if I do have some money in my pockets now, I still have to manage and serve food at the inn anyway.
I want to turn my life around, not like this!”
After all, young people these days like to eat raw.
When I was young…
The old man let out a deep sigh.
Either way, Annie looked at her piece of paper with heated eyes.
It’s a sign that the audience’s bet on Chasty is 10 times the money they’ve betted on Cloud.
And, she is betting her entire fortune, 25000 gold, on Cloud, so if he just wins…
‘I’m making more than 200,000 gold..!’
As long as she has that money, she no longer has to do boring inn jobs.
Possessing sufficient to buy a decent sized farm and slaves.
‘Let the slaves work and I will only play and eat under the shades!’
It was when Annie raised the corners of her lips, imagining a happy future.
“Ho? What, did you bet on that Cloud guy or something?”
Annie looked back at the sound of ridicule coming from behind her.
A middle-aged man with a pot like belly was sitting behind her, looking at her with a pitiful expression.
“Lady, it’s good to be greedy for money, but this time it’s a little bit overdone.”
“Huh, so what, old man? You wanna pick a fight, huh?”
“No, you look like a young friend of mine, but it’s because you’re pitiful.
It looks like the money you’ve been working hard on is being screwed up in your own hands.”
The middle-aged man shrugged his shoulders as Annie frowned and glared at him.
“The guy is called Cloud, isn’t he? He barely survived the qualifying round thanks to running away.
Do you think he can beat Chasty?”
“You wouldn’t know if you don’t watch the game until the end.”
“That is also true.
If it’s a game of characters of a certain level, that’s it.”
The smiling middle-aged man continued.
“Everyone says quack this and quack that, but you know it in your heart, right? I mean, Chasty has some unusual powers.
Didn’t you see it in the preliminary round? She possessed the minds of five people in an instant and used them like her limbs.
Do you think that Cloud can defeat that strange power?”
“….you wouldn’t know if you don’t watch the game until the end.”
“At this point, my dear… Well, let’s just see, it looks like it will start soon.”
The middle-aged man’s eyes turned to the stadium.
Chasty and Cloud were facing each other at a distance of 20m.
The game was about to start as soon as the host struck the drum.
Doo-! Doo-! Doo-!
The game started with the sound of drums.
Chasty skillfully wielded her skull staff.
She mumbled something while twinning like a crazy b!tch.
But then, something strange happened.
A black wave of energy materialized on the tip of her staff.
As Chasty swung her skull staff towards Cloud, the dark energy flew quickly and shoved into Cloud’s body.
Cloud’s running body stiffened as he flinched.
The middle-aged man who looked at him grinned.
The crowd who betted on Chasty cheered.
“Look at that.
Because there’s no game left, my lady, it would be sad to lose money, but…”
However, that cheers did not last long.
Cloud, who had been hit by the dark energy, tilted his head and started moving again as if nothing had happened.
Startled at the sight in front of her, Chasty jumped again and swung her wand.
More bundles of black energy were released than before and entered Cloud’s body.
Still, nothing changed for Cloud.
He walked towards Chasty with a puzzled expression on his face as if he was asking what sorcery was this.
Chasty’s leaps and bounds become urgent.
She shook her wand and began to mumble something the audience couldn’t understand.
When the act reached its climax, Cloud arrived in front of her.
Chasty was startled and she turned her back and tried to run away.
Cloud’s sword pierced right through her back.
Chasty expressed her pain with her horrific screams, and then she closed her eyes and died.
Silence prevailed in the arena.
Nobody was able to get out of the shock.
The host, who woke up late, shouted loudly.
“1st round, Participant Cloud, wins!”
Only after the host spoke, a commotion broke out among the silent crowd.
– Oh, crazy! Ya sure that was the real Old Quack?!
-Hey, damn! Gaga, f*ck this sh!t, I’m fucking sure it’s that old whore! Just because you stole money from your wife to bet here, the reality will not change dude.
-Who was the one who recommended me here? Come out, promise I won’t kill you!!!
-Oh man, did she even use her real magic?! What was the ‘piu-piu’ we just saw!?
-They must have fixed this match with money, you idiot!! Take my money you cheaters, damn it!
It was mainly the crowd betting on Chasty.
They grabbed each other and fought and threw tomatoes at Chasty’s corpse.
You wouldn’t know if you don’t watch the game until the end, right?”
Annie laughed and teased the middle-aged man.
The middle-aged did not respond.
He just looked at his paper slip and then at Chasty, with the liveliness of soul out of her face, lying down.
He, like Annie, was betting all of his fortune.
And, unlike Annie, who nailed it.
He has now become a penniless beggar in this harsh Kingdom of Alitia.
His future was bleak to say the least.
* * *
On the way back to the participant waiting room after the match.
Cloud grazed his wrist with a dagger.
Seeing the dripping black slime-like drippy blood, he grinned.
“Indeed, I learned it right.”
After the bright red blood started to flow instead of the black blood, he drank the potion and took his steps again.
* * *
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