Shovels In Spades



Book 3 Chapter 22: Pheldorapod's Considerations and 25-Million


A note from Lone

Second and final guaranteed chapter of the week.

"This has been such a waste of time," Han complained.

Daz nodded. "For you, yeah. For me? I want that City Creation Token. I want it a lot."

"I highly suggest you win the bid on this item as well, Daz," Red said. "I'm not sure about your personal chances, but Middletown's chances of surviving the system's tests will increase to a maximum of ninety-percent and a minimum of eighty-two-point-five-six-percent should you win that token. This is considering a total of six-thousand possibilities. I have yet to calculate further."

Mu looked impressed. "You really are very smart, my friend."

"I plan on buying it anyway. By the way, what's the limit of your calculations?" Daz asked curiously.

Red glanced at Han. "Not here. I will tell you at a later date in a more private setting should you still be curious."

"Sure," Daz replied.

"Well then, I've recorded everything about all of the winning bidders including projections and logical assumptions. I'll find some time to write this information down after the auction. If you don't mind, I'll return control to Ben now," Red said.

Daz smiled. "Sure. Thanks for the help, Red. I'm really thankful. This info might save lives in the future or create powerful alliances."

"I'm fully aware. Well then, until next we meet, Daz." With that said, he rubbed his ruby-eye and the coldness in his red eye disappeared. It was quickly replaced by the lively excitement which was a telltale trait of Rocky's.

"Welcome back, Rocky," Daz greeted.

"Thanks." Rocky took a seat and got himself comfy next to Mu. "Are you gonna bid on the last item, Sek? That City Creation Token thingy?"

Daz nodded. "Yup, but not right now. I'll wait until the bids slow down."

"That makes sense," the Ruby Sentinel replied before he started chatting with Mu.

And thus, the four rulers stayed seated as they drank, ate, played on their phones, and waited while the minutes ticked on by.

As soon as Pheldorapod's announcements of the bids had started to slow down, Daz asked the system to connect him to the bidding room.


The current bid for the City Creation Token: 18,200,000 merit point.


"Bid nineteen-million merit points," Daz said aloud.

Rocky was very surprised. He hadn't been paying much attention during this auction, so he had no idea how much the final item was worth nor was he aware of how many points Daz had. To be fair to him, he had taken a backseat while Red was storing the information about all of the winners.

"To have so many merit points... As expected of the man who defeated me," Mu commented.

Han scrunched up her face slightly. "Daz, tell me how many merit points you have. In exchange, I'll tell you how many I have."

"Sure," he replied as he raised an eyebrow. 'So even this kind of information restricts her? I'm really curious what would happen if I just flat-out refused her... Patience. It'd be a bad idea to piss her off by identifying her skills.'

"I've got just over fifty-five-and-a-half-million. Do you need the exact number to the single digit, or is that fine?" Daz questioned.

Mu smiled with pride while Rocky almost toppled over at the absurdly large figure.

Han just nodded slowly. "That much is fine. I have a little over twelve-million."

Mu's smile deepened while Rocky's fleshy eye seemed to glaze over completely.

"As expected of such a cool person."

"I think I'm gonna faint..."

Which sentence belonged to who was fairly clear. Daz paid no attention to them and continued to bid at his own leisure. His Wisdom and Survivor's Instinct were telling him that he was only bidding against one other person, so he was hoping greatly that they gave up soon.

In fact, it'd be perfect if they had a ticket to waste on him. The more points he got, the better.

Davido tapped his chair's armrest thoughtfully. "Only a few people have access to so many merit points..."

He kept his eyes fixed on the displayed '25,000,000' merit point bid that was running in opposition to his own bid of twenty-four-million.

"Christopher, tell me. Who am I competing with?" Davido asked coldly.

A tall and handsome man in his mid-twenties stepped forwards and crossed an arm over his chest before he bowed his head slightly.

He had long golden-blonde hair and was incredibly handsome. "Are you sure I should tell you, Your Imperial Majesty?"

"Yes. I do not care. I know the price Lady McArthur demands for the usage of your God-ranked skill. Consider it paid for," Davido replied dismissively.

"Very well," Christopher said as he stopped bowing.

"Fruit of Knowledge," the man of British decent muttered. His eyes flashed golden as an immaterial apple appeared out of thin air and slowly entered his forehead.

A few seconds passed before the blinding light in his eyes died down. Sweat covered his face, but thanks to the rules of the auction, his fatigue was washed away immediately. "Your opponent is Daz, or as he formally went, Darenzo Hamilio."

"Ah. My son and your sister's lover. Excellent." Davido smiled devilishly. "I have other plans for his growth, but I suppose I can concede this token to him. I'm ever so curious as to how he'll use it now..."

Christoper's countenance shifted slightly at the mention of Madison, but thankfully, Davido wasn't watching him, so it went unnoticed. "Of course, Your Imperial Majesty."

Pheldorapod wished he had a tongue to click in annoyance with. Naturally, he knew that Daz was one of the two bidders, and so far, his luck had drawn others towards challenging him with tickets.

Normally, it might be natural to assume that Pheldorapod would be happy at not being forced to give away the items due to the rules of the tickets. Yes, normally, however, such a small amount of money was nothing in the face of what the octopus stood to gain from the drama someone like Daz was prone to generating.

'If only I could give the system a few thousand merit stars or some solar credits to force a ticket challenge...' He simply had to shake his head and announce the results now that it had come to this.

"Ladies, gentlemen, the genderless, and everything else in between! We have our winner!" Pheldorapod stated grandly. "This person has only bid of three items in total, and, shockingly, he has won all three bids! This is actually his first regular win. I'm ecstatic to announce that the host, Daz, is now the proud owner of the City Creation Token!"

Murmurs of recognition spread throughout the crowd. Many concerned faces filled the octopuses eyes, pleasing him greatly. 'Even without a ticket challenge, you still stir their minds and boggle their senses! How thrilling! The building curiosity and anxiety are both absolutely delectable!'

"As is the tradition, I shall now state Daz's notable rankings! Oho, what's this? He has seven! Four of which are in the top ten! How magnificent!" Suddenly, the alien sensed something strange, stopping his words momentarily.

An incredible amount of anticipation was practically overflowing out of one of the private suites. 'Hmm... I feel no malice, but it feels... sticky. System, I want you to remember this. I am going to help out your chosen host just this once, you understand? I never break the auction's rules, but I will make an exception today, and only today.'

Purely based on the fact that he got no response was more than enough for him to know that the system was agreeing with him. "I've decided to keep the exact rankings a secret! Trust me when I say that they are all very interesting."

This was obviously a display of some sort of favouritism towards Daz.  Disappointed and angered shouts filled the hall. Thousands of people were eager to hear the young reaper's rankings to get some extra insight into who he was as a person and to learn more of his powers so as to better deal with him in the future.

Unfortunately for them, Pheldorapod was the owner of the auction. He was practically a god here. Even the system bowed to him in some regards when it came to this event, so the upset Earthians would have to just suck their thumbs and cry about it silently for he would not hear their complaints.

Congratulations! You have won the bid.

Your reward: [City Creation Token].


The total merit balance of the host is now: 29,510,045 [-25,000,000].


Just like with the Class Upgrade Token, a small flash of light signalled this one's arrival in front of Daz. He grabbed it and stuffed it into the same pocket that the Class Upgrade Token was occupying.

He scratched his head and sighed regretfully. "I was really hoping someone would use a ticket on me. Oh well, there goes just under half of my merit points."

Rocky held his chin in his hand and his elbow in the other. "Was it really worth so much? Weren't you g-"

Han interrupted the Ruby Sentinel by saying, "I'm leaving. I'll come to Waterford in the future if the situation allows it. I'll buy a teleporter relay too, so make an alliance with me when we meet again, okay?"

Daz was a bit surprised and he was struggling to understand her. Still, he wasn't going to miss out on an amazing offer like this. "That's fine, sure. I'm guessing you have plans for the champion auction, or can I invite you again?"

She nodded silently before saying, "Feel free. I might reject the invite though," and then left the room.

Rocky laughed a bit awkwardly. "Em, as I was saying... Weren't you going to become a king anyway after all of the advertisements you and your people have been doing? Also, don't you have a discount for the shop? It seems like a massive waste to me."

Mu shook his head. "Daz is very thoughtful. How does the saying go? Always a move ahead in chess? He was like that when we first fought. He destroyed me entirely because of his intelligent use of his resources."

Daz appreciated the praise that his faithful watchdog and budding friend was giving to him, but he chose to give his own reply regardless. "The biggest value from the City Creation Token is the otherworlders it comes with, not the city itself. In my personal opinion, at least. I have a good idea of how to get my money's worth, don't worry."

He got up and stretched lightly before adding, "Also, no, I don't have a discount for the shop. Not entirely, at least. I have two different discounts if we're being specific. One of my skills gives me a discount on all base-related things. My reward for being in the top three for evolutions gave me a discount for species and racial-specific purchases. Both of the discounts are quite steep."

Rocky's ruby eye glowed and his face lit up in excitement. "That's amazing!"

"Don't tell anyone, 'kay? Both of you. I trust you guys, which is why I'm letting you two know this," Daz asked with sincerity in his tone - a trait he was lacking until a few days ago.

"Of course. Skull and I don't intend to say anything about you or Fort Skip unless you tell us to," Mu responded.

Rocky had met the still-recovering Esmerelda before the auction when he and Mu were having drinks together at the bar, so he wasn't confused by the man's mention of 'Skull'. In response to Daz, he simply beamed that picture-perfect innocent smile of his. "Red'll keep me in check in case I accidentally almost spill the beans."

Daz chuckled faintly. "I'd appreciate that."

At that moment, the android which had brought Daz to the suite asked him, Rocky and Mu to leave just like it - or one of its fellow androids - had done so to Daz during the general auction.

With that signalling the end of the ruler auction, the three similarly aged men said their goodbyes and parted ways for now.

A note from Lone

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  • The Scottish Slothy Sloth

Bio: Hey there, nice to see you. I'm just an ordinary man who enjoys writing, which is great since it's my full-time job now thanks to the support from you guys over on Patreon! I hope you enjoy my novels if you read them, and if not, I hope you enjoy looking at my profile.

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