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Miri and Norn, together with Gorsa, descended down a different flight of stairs instead of the spiral staircase they climbed up with. The staircase did not lead to the first floor but seemed to continue downwards to the basement.
Gorsa’s expression was not as grim as Norn had imagined.
504 black medals, 50.4 million sense. Despite it being an amount that could let Norn enjoy 30 to 50 lifetimes without working.
Norn implicitly asked Miri about it.
“That was just a show. Between the greatest gambler Gorsa and an ordinary person who earned a fortune with luck on the first floor… right. Winning or losing didn’t matter. To be honest, losing 50.4 million sense isn’t that big a deal for this gambling parlor.”
“Norn, didn’t you realize? There were people holding onto silver and gold medals on the second floor. I’m just guessing but the silver medal would be equivalent to 10 black medals and the gold medal would be equivalent to 100 black medals, do you understand now?”
Norn initially couldn’t understand what she was explaining to her but she quickly realized and her face turned pale.
100 black medals, in other words, a regular in the VIP area can take out a medal equivalent to a large sum of 10 million sense.
Norn was shocked at the vast difference from her own world and she also understood the reason why the VIP area was separated from the ordinary area.
“The greatest gambler… I was once called that but now I am just the owner of a humble gambling parlor. In fact, I still lost to you like this.”
“Eh? I said it just now. It’s my loss. Well, I would be taking 90% of Norn’s medal though.”
Norn raised a voice to protest… and curled herself up after taking the glare from Miri.
Norn never thought from the start that she would take everything but she at least thought that it would be an equal split or at the very least a 30% cut.
Then, the place the two of them reached was ―
”… What’s this place?”
A dim wide room. Illuminated in the center was a stage that somewhat resembled the atmosphere that can be felt from the guild arena.
“It’s an underground arena. Humans versus monsters or occasionally humans are made to fight against each other and money is bet on the winner. Well, it’s a tasteless show.”
”… No, no way. There’s no way such an illegal act can be allowed”
“Have you forgotten? This is a state-owned gambling parlor.”
In other words, this show was endorsed by the country.
“Either way, you can’t blame it on Gorsa. Since this place has been running since before Norn or I, no, before Gorsa was even born. People who became slaves because they could not repay the debt they owe to the gambling parlor. Adventures who wanted to make a fortune overnight. Many people have fought here.”
”… Not a single person among the guests at the VIP area knows about this place though.”
Gorsa mumbled in a troubled tone.
“You don’t have to worry about it. The means I came to know about this place was special after all. It’s not because there are rumors spreading about outside.”
“Could you tell me the way you got to”
“It’s a secret.”
Norn was looking at the two of them respectfully bow to each other when cheers came from the hall.
When they turned to look at the arena, there was a man holding up a sword ― although, he was really just holding onto it, looking like he was inexperienced in fighting, as he was surrounded by four goblins. Just now it was just nice in her blind spot so Norn didn’t notice it from her position.
“So this is a bet to see how many goblins he will defeat huh. 2.1 odds for zero goblins defeated, 2.4 odds for 1 goblin… sigh, in other words, in most cases they all die before they defeat all the goblins.”
“Die… oh my god.”
“Norn, you can see that the guy is wearing a black slave collar right? That’s a collar meant for criminal slaves that are sentenced to death. There’s no need to sympathize with him.”
“Yeah. He stole from the mansion of a noble from the Kingdom and was sentenced to death after the trial. And I picked him up. If he wins 10 times consecutively, he will be granted a pardon. This is the second round but he injured his foot in the first round so this would probably be his end.”
“Incidentally, has there been anybody who escaped the death penalty by surviving through 10 battles?”
Gorsa didn’t answer Miri’s question. That was the answer.
A death penalty would stay a death penalty. The only ray of hope they have is to fight until the end with the hope that they could be saved. And the instant when that hope turns into despair ― they would turn into food.
Currently, a goblin’s club directly stuck that man’s back. He killed a goblin while looking like he was about to collapse but it looked like it was the end.
He was showered with blows from the remaining three goblins and blood scattered across the stage. Then, the goblins ripped off the arms, legs, and head and began devouring him. Goblins do not cannibalize. That’s because Goblin flesh is not tasty. And, having no concept of burying their dead, they did not spare a glance at their dead companion who fought with him just now as they continued eating the man until only bones remained when a fully equipped Adventurer-like man came and chased the goblins into their cage. They directed their blood thirst at the Adventurer for an instant but they were chased into the cage due to the smell of the monster repellent applied on the man. They weren’t allowed to finish consuming the man not because they wanted to at least allow him a burial. It’s probably because they have to always keep the goblins in a starving state. They were constantly starved, bordering the line between life and death. All for the sake of fighting with humans.
”… It’s terrible.”
Miri felt that Norn had decent sensitivity.
At least she was better than those noble men who looked at humans getting killed with a smile. And those noble women who also looked at the fight with a smile even though their faces were turned slightly away.
They don’t look at others as human. Nobles are born as nobles. Royalty is born as royalty. Because they were brought up like that, they truly believe that they live a different life compare to other humans.
Workers retrieved the man’s corpse while a man in tuxedo used 「Clean」 from the Lifestyle Magic to wash the stage. There were no traces of blood left.
“… Miri-chan, why are we here?”
“Because I’m here to look for a certain someone… Seeing as the person is not in the stands, I guess the person will appear as a participant after all. Gorsa-san, who is versus who in the next match?”
“They’re coming out now.”
Gorsa pointed at the arena.
One of the participants had a hood on so the face could not be seen. But from the thinness of the body, it was likely to be a woman.
And the other was a topless giant man. His weapon was an axe and there was a black slave collar around his neck. A criminal slave sentenced to death.
Norn made a sound when she saw that man.
That face and that equally dreadful green hair, her feet trembled slightly.
“Norn, it’s somebody you recognize?”
She nodded slightly to Miri’s question.
Thinking that Norn would not answer for a while, Gorsa explained.
“That man was a thief. His profession is Bandit. He was captured by Adventurers and was sentenced to death. The tendon in his feet was cut and he could not walk but he was treated by Practitioners and is now fighting here. It is now his eighth fight and he would get his pardon if he wins another two times.”
“And he is also the leader of the thief band that kidnapped me in the past.”
”… Then, he’s the bandit that was defeated by Onii?”
Miri waited for Norn’s reply and once again looked at the male bandit.
She imagined her brother fighting that bandit ― and in that imagination, there was the beaten up appearance of her brother.
Miri was always with Ichinojo so she grasped his strength. He would brandish his sense of justice and jump on those boorish men but he has had the tables turned on him before. Although Miri then showed those boorish men what true hell was.
”… Well, it doesn’t matter. My business is with that girl.”
The female facing that male bandit took off her hood and revealed her face.
A young lady with white skin and brown hair.
“1.2 odds for the girl, 8 odds for the man… I guess it’s the end for him here.”
Miri looked at the odds table and muttered.
“Yeah, that girl’s skill is genuine. Although, the bettings have already been closed.”
”… I see.”
If the bettings weren’t closed yet, Miri would probably have bet all her fortune on that lady.
The difference in ability between the two was that clear.
“Is she that strong?”
Norn asked after looking at the name written on the odds table.
“That lady called Kannon.”
The answer to her question was announced together with the signal to start the fight.
Magic Swordswoman Kannon.
What Miri didn’t know was that Ichino’s ability was also obviously above that ridiculous ability of Kannon’s.
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