12. Tenacious Gamblers [Part 2]

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[Broggon's Gambling Room: Mio 20, 3728]

Mason opened the door with his tentacle as he led them into the room.

Currently, Vorigan, Broggon, and Athena were seated at what appeared to be a large kotatsu table. Meanwhile, Viessa sat on an expensive-looking couch.

Lord Vorigan was a blonde vampire with pointy ears, long hair, and an attractive face. The black and silver light armor he wore was an impressive sight. He looked just as powerful and smug as Mason had predicted.

Vorigan noticed their arrival, despite being in the middle of a match.

"Ah, it's Thelsea. So that must mean that boy is a Tentacle Mage, right?" Vorigan inquired.

Vorigan's comment drew the attention of the others to Thelsea and Mason.

"You're in luck! Come sit with us! We've saved a spot for you," Broggon said.

Mason and Thelsea approached the Kotatsu as Broggon patted its fourth side.

Vorigan sniffed the air a few times.

"The scent of your blood tells me you are half-human. I suppose Broggon did warn us about that," Vorigan said.

Athena replied, "More like he informed YOU about it."

"What the fuck does that mean?" Vorigan asked.

"You understand exactly what I mean," Athena stated.

Vorigan looked annoyed.

"By the Gods, woman. How many times must I tell you? I only drink the blood of women, and mostly human ones at that," Vorigan said.

"Well, it's a pleasure to meet you, Mason, and I hope this is the start of a beautiful partnership," Athena said.

"Observe how she did not say friendship," Sage whispered.

Athena was a brunette demon girl with long hair around the age of 30. Mason was surprised to see that she was much younger than he expected.

"Now that we've cleared that up, let's play Domination," Vorigan said.

Mason noticed how eerily similar the game of Domination was to Risk as he sat down at the kotatsu with Thelsea. This game, on the other hand, seemed to be more magic-based than the one he was familiar with.

"I still can't believe you'd team up against a woman. Do you have no shame in this world?" Athena said.

"I don't care what the world thinks. Plus, strategic partnerships happen all the time," Vorigan said.

Broggon added, "You also control the majority of the map when we have Quatinum coins on the line."

"The Blonde Coalition will fail. Give in and let me win. It's not too late," Athena said.

"Blonde Coalition?" Thelsea asked.

"You like it?" Athena asked. "That's what I call their partnership since they are...you know."

"It was dragon shit when you came up with it, and it's still dragon shit today. Stop saying it," Vorigan said.

As she smirked, Athena laughed.

"Sounds like a sore loser," she teased.

Vorigan retorted, "Sounds like a bitch who wants some dick."

"Seems you both need a few drinks. Don't we all belong to the Tenacious Enforcers?" Viessa asked.

Vorigan and Athena took a few moments to think.

"You want to do some chrono later? I have a few vials just in case," Athena said.

"What? Regretting your wager of Quatinum coins? Couldn't be me," Vorigan said.

"Ha! As if! My plan is to take all your quatinum coins and then smoke some chrono with you. Are you in, or are you out?" Athena said.

While rubbing his chin, Vorigan thought for a moment.

"Perhaps I can partake if you're offering," Vorigan said smiling.

"You two are still using chrono? You're not addicts, right?" Thelsea said.

"What is Chrono?" Mason asked.

"A drug made by a Kilaqen alchemist. It's...quite an experience. I believe it is manufactured in the Northeast," Broggon said.

With a relaxed expression on her face, Viessa sipped on her sake.

"So, Mason. Did Thelsea already tell you about us?" she asked.

"Yeah. You're Viessa, he's Vorigan, and she's Athena," Mason said.

"As Thelsea's assistant, do you also have the right to assist with our business?" Vorigan asked.

"I was about to ask the same question," Athena replied.

"So was I," Viessa replied.

Thelsea looked confused.

"What exactly do you need him for? He's only a B+. He's also going to be busy helping Kedro and Verrona for the next few days," Thelsea said.

The first to present a reason was Empress Viessa.

"I would like Mason to steal some wine from the Kingdom of Marid," Viessa said.

"Surely you're joking, right? That's one of the richest kingdoms in the Wildlands," Thelsea replied.

"But their wealth is partly a function of their delicious wine!" Viessa replied. "I need just one crate."

"You're grossly simplifying the process of gaining that," Thelsea said.

Vorigan, the vampire lord, interrupted.

"Alternatively, he can assist me in the capture of Eliyen women. Although his tentacles could be used to capture wine, it would be more appropriate for him to assist me in achieving my objectives," Vorigan said.

"Can't you just go at night?" Thelsea asked.

"How can you possibly be so stupid? Ogis decimated all the villages, so there are no villages left to feed on! Cities and their perimeters are well guarded from us. Half-humans will not, however, be expected. Additionally, his demonic aura is low when he isn't in demon form. He's the perfect candidate," Vorigan said.

Athena offered another alternative.

"Those are nice, but my own is clearly the best. Just bring me a couple Quatinum Serpent eggs from the Northern forest!" Athena said.

As Thelsea smiled, Vorigan and Viessa burst into laughter.

"What's so funny? I'm serious!" Athena said annoyed.

"Is it correct to say that you want this boy to go into a nest of Quatinum Serpents and successfully steal a few eggs?" Vorigan asked.

"Of course," Athena replied.

"You're out of your mind," Viessa said.

Thelsea nodded in agreement.

"Wait. What's a Quatinum Serpent?" Mason asked.

Broggon sighed.

"An S-class monster with excessive power. There are a number of reasons why their eggs are so popular. Quatinum serpents, for example, have five eyes on each side of their heads. All are made of near-perfect quatinum, hence their name. In addition, parts of their bodies such as their teeth, blood, skin, and bones could be of great interest to us," Broggon stated.

"Oh wow," Mason remarked.

"They are also difficult to domesticate. We have three, each maintained by a tamer. It takes them four years to reach maturity and they only lay four eggs at a time," Vorigan said.

"I believe that it has been around 12 years since we got our first domesticated one," Broggon said.

Mason pondered for a moment.

"Athena, do you have any other suggestions?" Mason asked.

"Depends. Do you accept lewd requests?" Athena asked.

"Huh?" Thelsea said.

"I think I have some women who might be interested in tentacles. I also have some enemies that I'm looking for you to humiliate for me. This is the type of humiliation that your tentacles should be able to accomplish," Athena said.

Mason and Sage stared at Athena with a serious expression on their faces.

"When can I get started?" Mason replied.

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