Episode 90

A Week In Korea (9)
1 week ago
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Anyway, the conclusion is that Rurin won’t cause a fuss about wanting to get a toy.

Of course, since I came in, she followed me in anyway.

“What are all these? They look small. They don’t seem alive.”

“Yeah, they’re just toys. This is a machine for getting those toys.”

“There was a guy among my kin who trapped monsters in lairs and starved them to death. Is it like that?”

“No, it’s different from that kind of twisted hobby.”

As expected, Rurin seemed completely uninterested. But I was certain that, given her personality, even if she wasn’t interested in the toys, she’d find the act of getting them interesting.

“Just watch, you’ll understand.”

I put the 1,000-won bill I got from the machine in. A tune started playing.

Let’s see.

I grabbed the body of a nearby toy with the claw. It seemed to grab it properly, but the claw soon dropped the toy weakly on the floor and returned empty.

“What the…”

A curse slipped out.

It’s obvious they weakened the claw’s grip. My 1,000 won. It’s gone. And I got a hearty laugh from the dragon as a bonus.

“Puhahahaha. What are you doing?”

“What do you mean, ‘what am I doing’? That happens!”

“It can’t happen. Isn’t this like fishing? Even I can see that. Yet you can’t do it! Puhahaha!”

“Don’t laugh, you damn dragon!”

Her mocking only made me more determined. This time, I decided to use my brain. It was a trick I used when I was young. Although the toys and machines were bigger now, claw machines are all similar.

I put another 1,000-won bill in.

The machine played the music again, and I moved the claw with the stick.

When the claw is weak, the best strategy is to build a pile of toys around the drop hole. Then place a toy on the pile and push it off. This way, even with a weak claw, you can get the toy.

Of course, it’s difficult to do in one go. Fortunately, there were quite a few toys piled up around the hole I was targeting. So I just needed to pull the targeted toy onto the pile.

The funny thing about the claw is that it picks up distant toys, carries them near the hole, and drops them as if by design.

And when it grabs a toy near the hole, it doesn’t lift it properly and just drops it.

It seemed the machine’s program was set up that way.

It’s ridiculous.

So, I drag the distant toys near the hole and drop them to build a pile.

“Hoo…”

I had already invested 3,000 won.

Rurin, with her face pressed against the glass, turned to mock me again.

“Can’t you just grab it and drop it into that hole? You’re so bad at this. Fool, fool!”

“What? Do you think you can do it? Then shall we make a bet?”

“Hehehe, a challenge after a long time? Fine. I accept!”

Rurin nodded confidently, with a triumphant look. Even I, knowing the machine’s characteristics, struggled. What could she do?

This was a sure win for me.

“Then you go to the side. I’ll stay here. The bet is who can get a toy with less money, right?”

“Got it. If you lose, don’t think about leaving my side tonight!”

Rurin shouted excitedly with a triumphant face. Normally, I wouldn’t even consider such a bet, but there’s no way I’d lose.

“Okay. I accept. If you lose, you have to wake up early and go shopping with me at the market!”

Since she set a condition I hate, I set a condition she can’t possibly fulfill.

But Rurin was very confident.

“Waking up early? That’s nothing.”

Is that something a dragon who has never woken up early should say? She doesn’t wake up even when forced or carried around on my back.

Alright, if she’s that confident, let’s do it. I nodded. The bet was on. Of course, I had every reason to be confident.

I had already done the work of building a pile. Now, getting a toy was just within reach. But Rurin’s machine didn’t have many toys piled near the hole.

It seemed unfair, but Rurin provoked me first. So I was determined to win this bet.

Complacency leads to defeat, so I carefully approached the battlefield. Taking a deep breath, I put the bill into the machine.

The music played again, and the claw started moving. With a tune, the claw moved.

If the toy is already hanging over the drop hole, I just need to lift its end slightly with the claw. The claw, even with weak grip, lifts it to a certain height before dropping it.

That act pushes the toy hanging over the hole to fall. If it’s properly hung on the hole’s edge.

But I failed the first time.

I couldn’t grab the toy’s other end properly. Immediately, I heard Rurin’s voice.

“You failed once!”

“Yeah, yeah.”

One time is nothing.

I put the bill in again. This time, it’s certain. Yes, the claw grabs the toy’s end properly. And lifts it. The toy spins 360 degrees and falls into the hole. Yes!

Finally, the toy was pushed and fell into the hole. Success. Hehe. I succeeded in two tries. Conveniently ignoring my previous attempts, it’s my victory.

“How about that, Rurin, I did it in two tries.”

“You, why did it take you two tries for this? I’ll show you.”

Rurin, exuding baseless confidence, proudly stood before the machine. She moved the joystick, but the claw didn’t move.

Of course, it didn’t. She hadn’t put in any money. She looked at me with a puzzled expression.

Looking at me like that, it’s obvious it wouldn’t work without money.

I went over to Rurin, who looked like she was about to break the machine, and put money in.

Then I gestured for her to try. There’s no way she could get it in one go. Hehe.

“Watch carefully!”

Rurin moved the joystick confidently. It seemed she had learned how to use it just by watching me.

The claw moved toward a distant toy. It slipped between the gaps.

“Hm?”

The claw started to lift. Well, it’s a distant toy, so it’ll drag it somewhat close. That’s what I thought. When I picked up distant toys, they came close before dropping.

But the claw kept moving. Why does it keep moving?

It’s time to drop it, but it doesn’t.

The claw, still gripping the toy tightly, carried it all the way to the hole. Then it opened. A moment of shock.

The toy fell into the hole.

This is impossible. How could this happen!

Oh, right. I remember hearing that in claw machines, once in dozens of tries, the claw grip strength increases. The machine’s program can be set that way. So, it’s the one-in-many lucky time?

Why now?

I looked at Rurin with a despairing face.

“Hehehehe, I won! This time, I won’t change it for anything else. Last time, I won with the hug but foolishly got distracted by the earrings. Not this time!”

Rurin started jumping around excitedly.

Something is very wrong here. This can’t be. I can’t lose so easily.

I put money back into the machine Rurin used.

“Rurin, try it again.”

“What? No way!”

“No, no, not a bet. Just try it once.”

“Really? That’s fine. You want to see my skill! Alright! Watch closely!”

Rurin moved the joystick again.

And again, she lifted a toy with the claw and dropped it into the hole. What is this?

“See! You! Hahaha.”

“You didn’t use mana, did you?”

“You, why would I use mana here.”

“Yeah, I didn’t feel any mana, so it’s probably not that.”

I approached the machine with a tearful face. Is this machine particularly good at grabbing toys? I doubted the machine and put in 1,000 won.

Then the claw lifted the toy and immediately dropped it.

What’s going on?

I looked at Rurin with a stunned face. This is like that time on the night of the typhoon when I lost miserably at Gonggi.

A so-called divine hand.

“Hoo… I lost.”

I had no choice but to declare my defeat. She just has a hidden talent for claw machines. A talent for claw machines.

I was doomed to be Rurin’s cuddle pillow tonight.

I didn’t want to admit it, but if I didn’t, I wouldn’t be able to sleep.

Expecting a rough night, I trudged out of the claw machine arcade.

“You, you, you! Come with me! Are you showing the loser’s back? It’s fine. It’s fine. Hehehe!”

Rurin followed me excitedly from behind, laughing joyfully.


I’m doomed.

There’s no better way to describe my situation than saying I’m doomed.

When will that cursed 24-hour hug condition disappear from our bets? I kept thinking about how to escape this predicament while walking.

Damn it. Oh, heavens.

The heavens have never helped me, so praying is useless.

My brain was going crazy.

Rurin was going crazy too.

“Let’s go back quickly, you!”

She was jumping around excitedly, pulling me back to the hotel. I lost a similar bet before. But back then, there were earrings. Dangling, pretty earrings.

Because of those earrings, I managed to sneak out last time.

No. There’s a saying that even if the sky falls, there’s a hole to escape through. I need to find a way out somehow, but this damn dragon was pulling me so hard I felt dizzy.

The world turned black. It shook. I was dizzy. This dizziness was because of teleportation.

“Hey, you! Didn’t you say you have no mana!”

“When did I say that!”

“You said it earlier!”

“I don’t know about that! Hehe.”

She was hiding mana?

Damn teleportation brought us back to the hotel room in the blink of an eye.

The reason things turned out this way is simple. I said we’d start the bet’s execution once we got back.

So she brought us back immediately.

A total disaster.

“You, from now on, 24 hours is plenty of time.”

“Yeah, I think we need to shorten the time a bit.”

“I can’t hear you. You say such strange things sometimes.”

“What’s strange! We need to eat and wash up and stuff. How can we be together for 24 hours straight!”

“I don’t know. You can feed me. You can wash me. It’s only natural.”

Yeah, it’s a bet.

I have nothing to say. This is why you shouldn’t make bets. It’s the fastest way to ruin.

Feeding her too. It feels kind of similar to normal.

No, I shouldn’t accept this.

I’ll just sleep. Sleeping is enough. I crawled into bed.

I purposely booked a twin room. Just like in the restaurant, I make her sleep on the opposite bed. But whenever I wake up, we’re always in the same bed. It’s the same situation as in the restaurant.

In other words, as long as I fall asleep without worrying about Rurin, it’s fine. I’m pretty insensitive once I fall asleep and don’t wake up easily.

If Rurin starts snoring next to me with her eyes closed, my mind gets too complicated to sleep.

This dragon has a talent for making my heart race when she keeps her mouth shut and has a normal expression.

So, if I fall asleep before that happens, everything will be okay.

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