Volume 8 Chapter 3 Part 8

「So this is an auction?」

There isn’t really any difference with auctions back on Earth, despite all of my worries before. Internet auctions aside, I only known them from TV, and even then I only saw like a handful of them, but since their purpose is the same, then of course they would turn out to be similar.

「The next item today is the Coral Skill Crystal. Its authenticity has already been confirmed by the Merchants Guild. The starting bid is thousand Nars.」

The next seller shows up and puts the Skill Crystal on the table.

The price increases in hundreds from one thousand Nars again, and then it finishes. That same procedure has been repeated several times.

「All the people in the hall have probably participated now, so the bidding should start getting serious from here on out.」

Luke whispers to me.

Bids increase by ten percent for the starting range of thousand Nars. There wasn’t anyone that raised a bid by thousand Nars so far, but there were plenty of people that raised by one hundred Nars instead.

「The next item shown is The Holy Spear. It’s authenticity has not been confirmed by the Merchants Guild, so all potential bidders are advised to make caution when placing their bids.」

Oh, so The Holy Spear is finally here? About damn time, I say. The seller appears at the chairman’s introduction and as soon as he did I tried to use 「Identify」on him, but it showed that he didn’t have any family name, so it doesn’t seem like it was brought here personally by the members of the Baradam family. Apparently a substitute has been chosen to come and sell it, most probably a servant or perhaps a butler. The seller then puts The Holy Spear on the table.

Sacred Spear

Skills:「Empty」「Empty」「Empty」「Empty」「Empty」

「Oh!」

I called out by accident. But I just couldn’t stop myself from subconsciously uttering such a cry. After all, I did so because my 「Identify」revealed to me that The Holy Spear is a weapon that possesses a whooping amount of five Empty Skill Slots!

Amazing, amazing, amazing! This is so amazing that it almost made me want to cry on the spot! This Holy Spear holds five Empty Skill Slots! Five! I have never seen such a spectacular number of Empty Skill Slots, so of course I would get overwhelmed with emotion.

I was not prepared for something like this to be exhibited. As expected of an auction, there is a higher probability of seeing items with multiple Empty Skill Slots here than anywhere else….

But wait… this assumption of mine might be wrong. Could it be… could it be that this is all a part of Baradam family’s plan? Are they actually trying to deceive the potential buyers? And since I am the only one with the access to the 「Identify」Skill only I can see the number of Skill Slots and not be deceived.

「Well then, let us start the bidding of The Holy Spear. The minimum bid is set at one hundred and fifty thousand Nars. You can place your bids now.」

The auction of The Holy Spear is starting, and the minimum bid price is one hundred and fifty thousand Nars. Is this expensive, or not? I don’t really know since I don’t have any experience with appraising the value of items and weapons, but if nobody goes for it, I might actually try to get it for myself.

The more time passed, the increasingly strange atmosphere was filling the entire venue, and the air got so thick and heavy that you could probably slice it with a knife if you tried hard enough. But most importantly… no one even tries to bid.

It was natural for other brokers not to have a go at it since that is apparently what all of them have decided upon, but even the broker who bought the Kobold Skill Crystal didn’t try to place a higher bid even though it would a very good opportunity for him.

「Is the price high?」

I asked Luke. If it is too expensive, there is a possibility that it won’t find a buyer, and if nobody is going to bid, then I’m going to go for it.

It seems that the brokers all agree not to compete for it, but is it really okay if no one buys it at all?

「I don’t think so.」

But Luke denied the possibility of the price being too expensive. Then, what is this all about?

「One hundred and fifty thousand Nars. Someone? Anyone?」

「One hundred and fifty thousand.」

As the seller’s expression changes when no one appeared to be willing to buy The Holy Spear, the person leading the auction looks to confirm the bidder who declared his willingness to buy it at the price of one hundred and fifty thousand Nars.

Is that the strategy that they’ve decided to employ here? To pretend not to be willing to buy The Holy Spear at all only to jump in with the bid at the last possible moment?

It’s normal to jump at such a bargain price. That no broker actually went for it is weird in my opinion. It would be a different story if it were an expensive item, but according to Luke’s words, that is not the case at all here.

The seller displays an expression of relief, but it won’t last for long….  Since nobody follows up on the bid. As it stands, it will be sold at this price, and not for a singe Nar more. In that regard, I guess one hundred and fifty thousand Nars can really be called a low price.

I want to raise my hand and get that weapon for myself so much that I can’t take it, but I have no choice but to endure that desire. After all, I cannot allow myself to antagonize any of the brokers who are gathered here right now.

「One hundred and fifty thousand Nars going once, one hundred and fifty thousand Nars going twice. Nobody else…? In that case, The Holy Spear goes to the bidder with the bid of one hundred and fifty thousand Nars.」

And just like that, the bid of one hundred and fifty thousand Nars has been declared to be the winning bid for The Holy Spear. The seller dropped his shoulders in disappointment, most likely because he wasn’t expecting the final selling price to be so low.

「Which one do you think is more expensive: The Holy Spear or a staff with 「MP Absorption] Skill embedded into it?」

After I made sure that the person collecting The Holy Spear already went to the backstage to finalize the procedures, I asked that of Luke in a low voice. Assuming that the fusion of a Skill Crystal succeeds once out of ten times, adding the price of ten Kobold Skill Crystals and Scissoresque Carnivorous Plant Skill Crystals and the price of the staff, shouldn’t a staff with 「MP Absorption」 Skill in it cost around one hundred and fifty thousand Nars?

「In any other case, The Holy Spear would fetch a bigger prize, obviously.」

「What about this Holy Spear, then?」

「Considering its price, which has been set at one hundred and fifty thousand Nars, a staff with 「MP Absorption」 Skill in it would definitely cost more.」

「Is that so? I need to ask a favor from you, then.」

One hundred and fifty thousand Nars is a fairly low price, after all. And if that is the case, then after having made up my mind, I approached Luke.

「And what that favor might be?」

「I’d like to propose an exchange to the successful bidder of The Holy Spear. The Holy Spear in exchange for a staff with「MP Absorption」Skill in it.」

「It cannot be! Do you actually have such an item on you?」

「I don’t, but I can arrange one.」

I already have a Scissoresque Carnivorous Plant Skill Crystal, a Kobold Skill Crystal, and a staff with an Empty Skill Slot in it, so it is definitely possible for me to make a staff with 「MP Absorption」Skill.

The Holy Spear is now being replaced by the next item of the auction as it marches onward. Right now, my main concern is that it might possibly get replaced with a different Holy Spear before I’ll be able to have Luke deliver the details of my offer to the bidder that won the Holy Spear for himself.

Ah, I should have made a bid for it myself after all! But alas, it is too late for that now, and I can only remember The Holy Spear fondly, just like the memory of a sweet embrace of my mother’s arms.

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