Chapter 155 - I Want To Play Dou Dizhu

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Park Donggeun drew one card with a trembling hand, as though that one car weighed a ton. That was a card that would decide if he lived or died.

Pak! He turned it over and slammed it down on the table. Everyone looked over immediately and saw that he had drawn a nine of hearts. This wasn’t a very high value card, but it was definitely better than drawing a three or four.

The dealer glanced at the nine of hearts on the table, then drew a card and flipped it over in front of everyone without hesitation.

“NO!” Park Donggeun staggered a few steps back in terror. He stared in horror at the card on the table. It was a ten of spades. It was only one point higher than the card he drew, but it was enough to pronounce him dead.

Everyone gasped at the results. While losing to the dealer had always been a possibility right from the start, nobody thought he’d lose by just one point.

“No! I’m not going to acknowledge these results! It’s just one point! It’s just one point!” shouted Park Donggeun angrily. He stared at the dealer and decided to fight back instead of giving in to fate. There was a non-zero chance that he could kill this dealer and survive this Challenge.

“Die!” Park Donggeun roared and all the cards on the table flew up, hurtling toward the dealer like they were ninja stars.

The dealer didn’t bother dodging. All 54 cards went through his body, which made his body contort a little, but that was about it. He opened his mouth and sucked in a great amount of air, including the little person that represented Park Donggeun’s soul.

Park Donggeun was about to retrieve more items from his Handbook when his soul was consumed by the dealer. His face instantly paled and his eyes widened.

In less than a second, Park Donggeun’s body collapsed stiffly onto the floor, his eyes wide open. Before he could unleash everything he had, he had already breathed his last.

The atmosphere became grimmer than before. The Challenge had taken its first fatality, and it had unexpectedly turned out to be a veteran.

The dealer licked his lips, his tongue covered in bubbles that were as large as watermelon seeds as it also polished his algae covered teeth. This was a truly terrifying sight.

Su Jin sighed to himself. He didn’t think Park Donggeun had made a bad decision at all. He wasn’t capable of doing what Situ Jin had done, but drawing a card randomly from a deck of 54 cards was still the best way to minimize any difference in level of technique between two players. It was just too bad that luck wasn’t on Park Donggeun’s side.

“If you’re willing to take a gamble, then you’ve got to be prepared for the possibility of losing and accept it. It was a one point difference, but I won anyway. In any case, he was pretty yummy,” said the dealer with a grin. He looked at the group in front of him hungrily, as though he was picking out which one he wanted to eat next.

Su Jin pressed his hand on his Handbook and retrieved a jade-colored ring. He exerted some strength and crushed the ring in his hand.

“I’ll go next,” said Su Jin after he had crushed the ring. Everyone instantly turned to look at him. Kano Mai and Chu Yi became worried as well. They thought that Su Jin would observe this round for a longer time before trying anything.

The dealer said to Su Jin, “You and the other gentleman over there resolved my daughter’s grudge, so I will give you a little special treatment later on. But first, tell me what game you want to play.”

Su Jin said, “I believe that besides one on one games, you’re okay with group games, right? How about a three versus one?”

“Three versus one? Of course I’m okay with that. As long as you want to, I’m happy to accommodate any arrangements. But…if you lose the game, then all three of you will perish at the same time,” said the dealer with a cheeky grin. Getting the chance to swallow three souls at a time was certainly something that the dealer looked forward to.

Su Jin nodded. “Of course. Mai, Chu Yi, come and be part of my team.”

The two of them didn’t protest. They trusted that Su Jin would never get them to do anything that would endanger their lives, and wasn’t the type to drag others down with him either.

Once all three of them had gathered around the table, the dealer asked curiously, “There are many games that four persons can play, but what are you thinking of? Mahjong?”

“If we play mahjong, we’d lose to you in terms of technique. I want to play Dou Dizhu!” said Su Jin with a smile.

(shini you decide if you want to leave this in the middle or at the end, but) For those who have no idea how to play this game, the rules are here: Knowing the rules does not really affect the reading of the story so to speak, but for those interested in understanding the logic behind the decisions that the owners make over the course of the next three chapters, you can read this first.

“You want to play Dou Dizhu?” Both the dealer and the other owners were surprised by this choice. This was a game played by almost everyone in China, but because it started as a game among the lower classes, it was never played in places like a casino, so there was also no actual table for it to be played on.

“That’s right, I want to play Dou Dizhu. You said any sort of gambling is allowed, right? Dou Dizhu is definitely such a game,” said Su Jin. He quickly added, “And you said I can get a bit of special treatment right? In that case, I would like you to be the Landlord role for this game.”

The dealer looked at Su Jin for a moment, then started applauding. “What a fantastic idea. Instead of taking me on by yourself, you’ve got a team of three who can work together to help one another and take me down. This is a very good choice indeed.”

“It’s good for you too, right? You can settle three of us at one go and waste less time and effort here. That’s why you’re so generous with your compliments - you’re trying to convince the rest to choose to play this game as well and lose quickly!”

It was true that everyone else thought that Su Jin’s method of pitting a team of three against the dealer would increase their chances of winning. But they hesitated again after hearing Su Jin’s analysis of the dealer’s words. What if this wasn’t going to make winning this round any easier? They would end up getting eaten faster instead.

“Since you know that I can gobble more of you up at one go by playing this way, why did you get these two to be on your team? Unless…you’re hoping to drag these two down with you?” said the dealer in a mean voice.

Su Jin merely glanced at the dealer and said, “You can stop making guesses. I want them here because I’ve got a very high chance of winning. That’s all.”

“Aha! You’re very confident that you’d win! Yet another person with the potential to become a gambler! This makes me so excited!” said the dealer with a big smile. He clapped his hands and two decks of poker cards appeared on the table. After he picked out the cards that weren’t needed, he combined both decks.

The dealer passed the entire deck to Su Jin and Su Jin started shuffling it. “Humans are always willing to take a gamble when it comes to matters of life and death. I would say…every human is born a gambler.”

“Heh heh, you’re right. Every human is born a gambler, but not every human is born a winner,” said the dealer with a sinister smile.

Just then, Kano Mai suddenly raised her hand and said to Su Jin, “Jin, I don’t know how to play this game at all.”

Su Jin froze and Chu Yi slapped his forehead. Everyone who forgot that Kano Mai was actually not from China was confused as to why she didn’t know how to play this game, while Su Jin cursed himself for not checking if she knew how to play this game first.

“Well, it’s a very simple game!” Su Jin gave her a quick rundown on how to play the game. The dealer did not hurry him at all, probably because that was part of the special treatment Su Jin deserved for undoing the hatred in his daughter’s heart earlier.

Kano Mai was an intelligent woman and the rules of the game weren’t really too hard. She got it within the next ten minutes or so.

“Don’t worry guys, just play it like you normally would. Don’t try anything funny,” Su Jin instructed his team mates. He was afraid that the two of them might try to cheat because they were worried about losing. But if they did that and the dealer caught them, they’d definitely end up dead.

The two of them trusted Su Jin wholeheartedly. Since Su Jin told them not to try anything funny, they weren’t going to. The dealer flipped the first card and the game began.

The atmosphere grew rather tense. Three lives were at stake now, and these three were all veterans. If they lost, then they would be left with only one out of the five veterans they had in the group. That thought alone made the tension almost suffocating.

Su Jin wasn’t too worried. He just played the game like he normally did. If the item he had retrieved from his Handbook earlier worked, then his chances of winning this game weren’t going to be a problem.

As time passed, the four of them had fewer and fewer cards left in their hands. The dealer had only six cards left, which meant that it was possible for him to end up putting all six down at one shot. Su Jin and his team mates had more cards on hand, so by just looking at the number of cards, the dealer seemed to have a higher chance of winning the round.

Cold sweat was already dripping down Chu Yi’s face. He was the player who went before the dealer, so the pressure was really on him. If he played a card that the dealer could win easily, he might cause the downfall of his entire team.

“The dealer has six cards…what combination could they be? A bunch of pairs? A full sequence? A bomb? Oh my god what should I do?” thought Chu Yi as he felt his hands perspire. His sweaty hands were having trouble even holding onto the cards.

“Come on, put something down,” the dealer hurried Chu Yi.

“One card!” Chu Yi finally decided that putting out one card was safer. At least the dealer wouldn’t be able to put down all his cards at one time.

“Humph! Pass!” said the dealer with a scoff. He did not think it was necessary to put any cards down.

Su Jin smiled. “You sure you want to pass this single card? I’ll go next then.” Su Jin put down a card with higher points than Chu Yi’s. The dealer was annoyed with Su Jin’s taunting but there was nothing he could do about it and just shook his head.

“In that case…the game’s over.” Su Jin put down the rest of his cards. He had a full sequence on hand.

The dealer was stunned for a moment. He stared at the cards and burst out laughing. “Indeed, your team has won. The three of you can have your souls back.”

The dealer waved his hand and the three little persons on the table flew back into their respective owners’ mouths and nostrils. All three of them had survived this round.

Chu Yi breathed a big sigh of relief. He wasn’t good at playing cards in the first place and was really worried the whole time. Thankfully, Su Jin managed to win the round.

After watching Su Jin and his team win the game, the rest felt a little more confident now. Some of them got into small groups as though they were prepared to do something similar.

Of course, there were a few who still didn’t think that teaming up would be a good idea, since one person’s decision could result in the death of the others. They looked around shiftily, unsure of what to do next.

Han Yiqing suddenly turned to Su Jin and Xiang Nan and asked, “Um…I just wanted to ask both of you…what do you think we should do next?”

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