Shatei Kyokufuri – 63

Data.57 – Old Bowman, Sagittarius Trial

In any case, nothing would start until I chose which horse I would ride.
After all, I had to shoot from horseback.
I would have to perform this stunt of aiming and shooting while riding on a horse.

According to Charin, the course was about 200 meters in a straight line, and there were three targets lined up.
This time, it wasn’t about points. You had to hit the circle in the center of the target to pass.
However, you would fail if you missed even one of the three targets.

I had been allowed to see a replica of the target in advance, and the center was about the same size as the part of the previous target that got you 100 points.
In other words, the target wouldn’t be harder to aim at.
That is, if you ignored the part where I had to be on a horse.

“Hmm. I don’t know much about horses, so I have no idea which one will be faster. No, perhaps I should pick one that is slower and more stable…?”

Well, I suppose I would have to go by instinct then.
As our eyes had met, I chose a chestnut horse.

It was already saddled once you took it out of the stables, and so the player just needed to get on top of it.
And even if you didn’t know, a tutorial window opened up, and so you just needed to follow it and you would be able to get up on the horse.

The tutorial also said that the horse might attack you if it was in a bad mood, but my chestnut steed seemed to have a quiet personality.
Now, I should practice a little first.

“Uhh…go!”

Unlike real horses, it would understand spoken orders.
The horse moved into a trot.
There was already a lot of swaying, and it hurt your butt…

“Ru-run!”

The horse rushed forward at full speed.
And I was thrown back and forth at full speed.
It was like with every step, my butt was slammed onto the horse’s back…!
How was I supposed to aim like this…!

‘Use your legs to hold on tightly to the horse’s body, and your hips to stabilize your upper half-nyon!’

“Understood…!”

I tensed my legs and clamped them around the horse.
Indeed, there was less shaking after that.
But I still didn’t feel that I could aim with my bow.
And so I had to move my hips along with the horse and try to minimize the amount of shaking for my torso at the least.

Alright, it was getting better.
Now I had to hold up the bow.
It was a special Japanese-style bow, and one of the larger ones in the game.
However, since my old Windcloud Bow was also in that style, it wasn’t much of a departure.
It felt pretty comfortable in my hands.

And while the arrows were also a little different in design, it was nothing to worry about.
In other words, the only problem was the horse.

‘Why don’t you try the actual challenge now-nyon? You can do it as many times as you want, so there’s no pressure-nyon!’

That was true.
There were things that you couldn’t see until you tried.
And so I told Charin that I would do it, and then I waited in front of a large gate made of wood.
I couldn’t see what was on the other side, but it was likely the course.

‘10 seconds before opening!’

9, 8, 7… As the countdown started, I grew more nervous.
Calm down, this is just a test run.
If I failed, I could just try again.

‘Zero! Open!’

At the same time that the gate opened, the horse dashed ahead at full speed.
Hey, wait a second! It was way faster than it was during practice!

“Ah, there he is!”
“The old bowman is coming!”
“I’m sure he’ll do it in one shot!”
“No one else has been able to do it on their first try!”

So there were even spectators watching from outside of the course…
But horseback archery was usually performed during ceremonies and rituals, so maybe this was the right way to do it?
That being said, they were asking a lot from me with these expectations…!
And I couldn’t stop thinking about it…!

The first target was getting closer and closer.
It would be closer than it was during the first trial.
I stabilize my body and…shoot!

Kiririri… Shu!

As I was a little late, I had to bend backwards in order to cover for it.
It was a good thing that I didn’t fall off, but I wasn’t sure if I had even hit the target or not.
And before I knew it, the next one was closing in.
This time I shot…quickly!

Kiririri… Shu!

Yes, the timing was good.
And I was able to confirm that I hit the target.
But it was too early to celebrate.
It would be all for nothing if I missed the 3rd one.
I calmed down…and shot!

Kiririri… Shu!

I hit it…!
Now I just had to hope that all of them had hit the center.

‘And now for the results! Mister Kyuji’s results are…’

Charin paused for dramatic effect.
However, the audience reaction had given me a good hint…

‘All arrows hit the center! You pass-nyon!!’

“Phew… That’s good.”

Part of it was being able to meet their expectations, and part of it was that my butt couldn’t take being on this horse any longer.
Had I failed this time, I would have probably waited a while before doing it again…
But then again, there was also a part of me that wanted to ride the horse for longer. Humans were complicated creatures.

‘Now-now! It’s time to give you the Sagittarius medal! There is no one more fitting to receive it-nyon!’

The Sagittarius constellation was depicted on the front, and the legendary centaur with a bow was on the back side.

‘And here is your special reward! It’s the ‘Star Arrow’-nyon!’

Well, that was an easy to understand item.
…Huh? This item didn’t have a ‘Use’ option.
Not for me or Garbow. So…was it just a crafting material then?
It seemed unlikely, but I had no choice but to store it away for now.

So, thanks to it being my strong area, I was able to finish it quickly.
Though, it had also made me quite nervous…
The sun was still high in the sky. So I might as well finish the next labyrinth today as well.

“If I continue in this order, the next would be the Scorpio Labyrinth. A scorpion, huh… I don’t have a good feeling about that. I wonder what kind of labyrinth it will be…?”

“Unlike this place, the Scorpio Labyrinth is a real dungeon. There is only one special rule. You have to enter it as a 4-player party. So even if you try doing it solo, you’ll be randomly matched with other solo players.”

“You… Hatake?”

“Why is that a question? I look exactly the same as the last time we met, old man.”

It was Mister Hatake, the ‘Flag Magician’ who was also a 3rd.
I had only interacted with him during one event, but he had been quite the memorable character. And was troublesome in some ways.
Why was he here…

“It’s embarrassing, but I will admit it. I went into the dungeon with members of my guild, but I alone failed. They got through, but say that they don’t want to do it again…”

Ah, so that was why…
I had an idea of what he was going to suggest.

“Please! Can you help me take on the Scorpio dungeon!? I cast buffs, so there is no point if my comrades aren’t strong! And I don’t know anyone else outside of the guild!”

While Hatake sounded desperate, he did not lower his head.
Not that I wanted him to.
But I was impressed that he could make a request with such earnest vigor while keeping his back completely straight.
I would probably be bowing repeatedly in his shoes.

Of course, that was completely unnecessary. We were just playing a game.
And if it was just one dungeon, then I didn’t mind working with him.
It was probably better for me as well, as I wouldn’t have to be with a player I didn’t know at all.
But if he asks me to join his guild…then I would refuse.

Next Chapter


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Shatei Kyokufuri Yumi-Ojisan

6 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Aye that’ll do. You have done Atilla and Genghis Khan proud Kyuji.

    So he has to go in a party of 4 for the next challenge? Hatake is already filling one spot so I wonder who will the other two spots? Nekoko and some new character? Two randos? Or the two other players that have been mentioned before a few times that also helped during the octopus -or was it a squid- battle?

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