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Chapter 51 – Overwhelming
A bored woman looking down on the world.
Well, it’s none of my business, but……
『Accept that little girl’s challenge.』
「…… huh?? 」
『Would the prize not be convenient?』
I was about to leave, but Tre’ainar’s suggestion surprised me.
「Whoa, come on, what are you talking about? No matter what prize they are declaring, she’s a national level talent, isn’t she? I’m not that good at it, no way I’ll win.」
I don’t know how strong she is, but if you’re betting on 20 consecutive wins or a prize, you know she’s a pretty big shot.
For me to beat such an opponent……
『The child need only engage as I instruct.』
『Indeed, it is I who shall play.』
That proposal left me frozen with my mouth open.
No, that’s right.
「What are you saying, Tre’ainar? Oh, you’re…」
『Tis no issue. After all, tis but a small girl. She is no opponent to me.』
「No, no, no… But…」
I never thought that Tre’ainar would step up himself.
What’s his state of mind?
『Child. Were it simply to earn meager funds, I would not intervene as tis the child’s trial… but, the circumstances are special this time. For the time being, I wish to reward the ogre for saving the child as the Great Demon King…. if tis to buy a cake and other articles, then I shall assist you.』
This is not for me, but for Mr. Aka.
In a way, Tre’ainar, who was once the King of the all Demons, is trying to reward a demon that lives in the present….
『Also…. much funds would be required if you are to purchase books. Everything you bought was abandoned at your home, was it not?』
……that’s the real purpose, isn’t it? But, well…
「Seriously! Still, you have a point…. it sounds interesting.」
I mean, doesn’t it?
I’m the only one who can see him. I’m the only one who can talk to him. I’m the only one here who knows of the existence of The Great Demon King Tre’ainar.
But in this way, Tre’ainar is trying to show his presence through me.
For a moment, I remembered the mischief of the days of my childhood and was somewhat excited.
“I’ll play you!”
I raised my hand to the woman and the old man as they were about to leave the stand due to lack of challengers.
“Oh, oh, this is a manly challenger! Are you sure?”
“Ah! You’ll give me a prize if I win?”
If we win, 100,000 Tsuvlad… given my penniless state, I shouldn’t see it as passable.
It’s less than my one-month allowance, but…what? Hey, Tre’ainar. Why are you reading my mind and looking like, “Wow” there?
“Hey, brother, you’re brave.”
“Good luck, man!”
Then, spectators gathered around and cheered me on as well.
Laughing bitterly at such voices, I sat face-to-face across the woman,
“Are you about my age?”
“Oh, yes. Citizen of the Empire?”
“Well, I grew up in Imperial City.”
“Really … of the Imperial City ……”
Sitting still in front of me, the woman looks me over again with great interest and laughs a little… No, why do I get the feeling she’s laughing up her nose at me?
Nyaya…… I’ll show you something in your eyes! ……Tre’ainar.
“Oh, wait a minute, if you intend to challenge ojou, pay 10,000 Tsuvlad.”
“Huh!? Errr!? You’re taking money!??”
Well, they’re going to bet money on it, so it’s only natural that a challenger’s fee will be taken here as well.
I don’t have 10,000 now.
“I don’t mind, Kouga. I can beat a boy of my age, so I’ll provide that much service.”
“Eh… no, if ojou says so…… but are you sure? If you lose, won’t ojou’s pocket money be gone?”
“Fu… you’re worried about me. Thank you.”
Oh, what’s ‘Fu’. There’s no way we’re going to lose. That’s how it looks.
“Then, the first move is yours. Come on…”
I’m grateful to you for the service, but I’m so irritated that I’m not sure what to do, Tre’ainar.
『Hmph… good! Now then…… Upper right corner, stars.』
And Tre’ainar’s first move was unleashed through me.
Shinobu immediately strikes the second move.
『Komoku (3-4 point) 』
Go. The game of conquering territory on the board.
A game in which you destroy your opponent’s defense with your own pieces and expand your territory, preventing and intercepting enemies that attack at the same time.
“…… the campaign is a little dated.”
Shinobu muttered with a slightly thoughtful expression as we talked to each other about a few moves in.
『My tactics are from fifteen years ago. I suppose this girl is saying ‘dated’ in that sense.』
「Eh? Is that right?」
Tre’ainar seems to have understood the true meaning of Shinobu’s muttering. But isn’t that bad?
Tre’ainar’s ability is unknown, but his knowledge of Go stopped as of 15 years ago.
Just like civilization, the tactics of Go will change in 15 year.
『Advance the first formation forward.』
However, it was then….
After they had played each other by about a dozen hands, Shinobu opened her eyes and stopped her hands.
“…… uh. This is…”
And not only stopped.
She leaned forward, looking at the entire board as if she were taking it all in.
Eh? Why? In this early stage?
『Fufufu… you want to beat the units that have advanced, but to do so, you will have to break the defensive formation that you are trying to complete in a few more moves. Furthermore, if you send troops to destroy that unit, the troops themselves will become obstacles, and subsequent proper attack formations will not be possible.』
Eh? No, why? How can you say that with only a few hands? No, but is it true?
Her eyes were wide open.
『I wonder. In this situation, I shall play the same move. Your formations have more or less been broken, if you hit the troops now, whatever future move you play, it seems that you can be read perfectly.』
Shinobu finally made her next move with a click of her tongue, Trainer nodded with a slightly gentle face, saying ‘right’ as if he were teaching her.
Sort of… this is the first time I’ve seen Tre’ainar watching over me…. What? I wonder what…It’s like a momentary…
『Oi, child… do not play so casually.』
『Go requires deep thought and the ability to read ahead. It improves your concentration, thinking, analytical and anticipatory skills. As it were, I read the opponent’s best moves and guided them as I wished…. tis always useful in combat.』
『While playing, think about my intentions as well. From now on, we shall play together… this will train your concentration, reading and thinking skills, so I will play you a lot from now on.』
I see. This is also a way for Tre’ainar to train me.
Do you want to train my pre-reading? Well, I’ll do it, and if Tre’ainar says so, will I remember it?
Because I’m a disciple. Me.
And, Shinobu spoke out again.
This time, it’s a pretty surprised voice.
“Guh … u …. “
Shinobu has a cold, sharp expression.
At the same time, the crowd suddenly began to buzz.
“Oh, the upper right position of the young lady has completely collapsed!?”
“Hey, this brother, who is he?”
“That really strong girl is overwhelmed, isn’t she?”
And looking at this board, even I could understand the state of the war.
「Hey, Tre’ainar. Is this woman strong?」
『Oh, she is impressive. She has a well-balanced, steady play style. At this young age, she is quite formidable.』
『Ah. If you replace the perspective to an actual warrior… Imperial Knight…… then she has the power of the advanced warrior class.』
Then, Tre’ainar who crushes the attacks of such a woman, and annihilates them…… if I were to play you, wouldn’t I give up right away?
“Hey!? Oh, come on, it can’t be!? The young lady’s field, as she tried to solidify her defense…… he cut it in two!?”
Usually, a game of Go is often played for tens of minutes, or hours if you’re not proficient.
And yet, just a few minutes, dozens of hands…
“I… guh… I… I lost….”
And without making her next move, the woman in front of me…… Shinobu surrendered.
It was over in just a blink of an eye.
“T-Thank you very much.”
And… you’re too strong… Tre’ainar.
Normally, a development such as “Defeated the opponent nobody could beat because they were too strong” is the one so good it would end in cheers.
And yet, including the gathered crowd, everyone was still.
“O-Ojou lost… That’s stupid… As for Go, ojou who was hailed as Japone’s godchild…… What…… what was this man …”
The old man beside Shinobu called Kouga is also stunned.
That is, due to the extent of such an overwhelming victory they are totally at a loss for words.
「Hey, Tre’ainar… even if a little, couldn’t you have held back?」
『Hah~… Well…… I could afford to stay my hand a tad, but it has been so long time since last I played the game and she was a formidable opponent, I have gained much experience.』
Tre’ainar… that self-satisfied face is too much.
Well, if I wasn’t Go, I would have been mercilessly killed if we sparred.
When I think about this woman’s feelings now……
“Y… You…… Who the hell are you?”
Shinkenshi? What is that?
“For the time being… as promised, I’ll pay you.”
Shinobu immediately raises her face. Staring straight at me with her dignified eyes, she took out her wallet from her pocket and slammed it on the desk.
“Ah, aaah… yes. Well, that’s it.”
Anyway, money is money. Let’s get out of here and buy a cake without making a fuss or getting entangled.
“Hey, hey, how long have you been playing Go for?”
With everything that happened, surely Shinobu will have a lot of questions.
For the time being, I’m half joking, but kind of really in the mood for mischief….
Answering so, and I try to reach for the money on the desk.
“One more time… with me……let’s play… Can you give me that?”
All of a sudden, Shinobu grabbed my wrist and held it tight.
“A loss is a loss. But I’m sorry for underestimating you, I made a mistake in handing you the first move.”
“Oh, that, no, I…”
“But, even without it, I know you are far stronger than me. But I want to fight with all my might and see the difference between you and I.”
It’s like she saw through my intention to quickly leave before getting dragged into something bothersome. To make sure I wouldn’t escape, with her blank expression, she tightly grasped me so hard it was painful.
“In my hometown, I’ve never lost to anyone my age. Go, grades, beauty. Look, I have big breasts, you know.”
“Is.. is that so…”
“Without exception, until now that is… I took the boys of Imperial City too lightly. But, passionate pathos is surging.”
Sorry. It was not me of the same age that played you, but a Demon King who lived for thousands of years.
I mean, I’m sure you’ve got a big chest, but the princess is still bigger…that doesn’t matter….
“No, no, but I have a lot of plans…”
“You live in the Imperial City, then we’re going to the Imperial City next, so how about that?”
“What?! Oh, no… oh, I have some business to do, not in the Imperial City, but the place to go next….”
Eh, no, what? What’s with, this woman, her face is expressionless yet I feel such staggering pressure, or rather, I mean, it’s scary!
What is this momentum like ‘do not escape’?
“Can you not be silent, Kouga?”
“If I let this once-in-a-lifetime encounter end my heart would feel much disgrace.”
With that said, Shinobu rejects old man Kouga’s voice as he tried to intervene.
Not good, this woman… she might be a bad type to get involved with.
“Ah, but, ojou… it’s about time you met with ‘leader’.”
“Then, can you tell Anii-san that I’ll go later?”
“No, no, no, you were strictly told to be punctual! Even if you don’t have a quest today, you’re sure to perform a formation review exercise.”
“~~~Oh, I know already.”
Oh, it looks like you’ve changed your mind.
“Hey, you. I have to go now… Where can I find you tonight?”
Oh, it’s no good.
“…I’ll stay at the inn on that Street tonight.”
“So, it seems. Then you don’t have to put on airs. Isn’t it a reward for you? With me, such a beauty and big brea―”
And something fell to the ground.
It’s like a slime… What?
“…… it got smaller.”
The Shinobu’s chest, which should have been there, was gone.
The moment everyone noticed it, Shinobu quickly picked up what had fallen to the ground and hid it.
I’m sure that….
“Isn’t it possible to misunderstand? This ‘Sobra’ was only fitted with emphasis on the inner element, I was expecting that there might be a lot of trouble during the journey, in order to play the opponent’s attack, I decided comprehensively that a bra made of this slime, commonly known as Sobra was very suitable for the defense, so I thought to make my chest bigger, I don’t care about them being small, in the first place, my age is still in a growth period, so they will grow bigger in the future―”
Anyway, for some reason, me and all the gallery folks were sorry for Shinobu, and old man Kouga sadly put his hand on her shoulder,
” ~~~, anyway, promised me tonight? I’ve already remembered you. I’m locked on. Okay!”
Shinobu and the old man, whose expressionless faces turned red for the first time, left the place with a trot.
「She was a strange woman…」
『Tonight. Well, I care not if you intend to play… 』
「No way. I don’t want to get involved. Quickly, just leave this town.」
I said it unintentionally, but I didn’t want to get involved with her anymore. I decided to buy a cake quickly, so I went to the cake shop.
Unfortunately, I’ll have a very early reunion with Shinobu, who I was hoping to not get involved with anymore.
However, it was not on the board, but a reunion on the battlefield.
Recently, I was wondering if the readers of this novel are of the same age group…
[S1]I’m guessing ツブラだ refers to their currency. Phonetically it goes, Tsuburada, but I went with Tsuvlad.
[S2]The word here, 真剣師, refers to those who play board games for stakes (big money). Usually used for Shogi players but can also apply for Go, Chess and Yu-gi-oh!!
[S3]PHRASING!! This can so be taken the wrong way….
[S4]Yes, there is…. (︶︹︺)