Chapter 7:

Cutthroat mode

Life Stream: Helping a cute girl gain views and followers

I whistled as I looked at the view numbers of Leona’s latest videos.

“It’s in the thousands. Guess people really are hyped for the challenge."

“Your video was good too. I loved all the memes you put into the highlight reel,” Leona chimed.

I had finally finished the Squeegee’s Penthouse highlight reel and it was doing well. I guess I had a better knack for editing than I realized. More surprising was the fact that my own Wich channel had gained a couple followers.

“You should try posting to your Mewtube too.” Leona suggested.

“But I’m trying to help you out. Besides, I’m not as charismatic as you," I stated.

“You were great in the collab yesterday. Besides, you act cool and confident when you’re not talking directly with another person you don't know. We should stream the other boards today on your channel as well.”

“No way, my channel would barely grab any views, however, I know you’re not going to let up so how about a compromise. We stream on your channel but upload the vod on my Mewtube channel.”

“Nah, I got a better idea! I start streaming, then raid and host your channel, and then we stream from there.”

I had no choice but to smile at her idea. I felt mine would generate more traffic, but she had a good idea.

“Alright, but just do a short stream first. Beat that boss in Pilemen and then raid me.”

“Sweet! Feel free to get set up in the meantime. This setup is designed to accommodate 2 different streamers.”

I began hooking up my laptop as Leona streamed Pilemen. The thought of me starting a streaming career had never crossed my mind before, however, I could understand why Leona felt so confident about me streaming.

“Chat’s asking where Crowboy is. Don’t worry chat, once I kill this damn disco crab, I’m gonna play more Jamboree on his channel.”

Her viewer numbers were now in the low hundreds, but I was more worried about them dropping once she raided. Eventually it came time for the raid.

“It’s raiding time! This time I’m gonna beat Crowboy!”

Naturally the viewer numbers dropped as she raided but stabilized around 70.

“Thanks for the raid. Now let’s play,” I stated.

I instantly went back into cutthroat mode as the title screen popped up.

“Let’s play online this time. You’ve gotten a knack for the game,” I suggested.

“Alright, let’s do it!”

After finding some opponents, we played on one of the harder boards.

“25 turns? I thought it was only 15,” Leona asked in confusion.

“You can change the turns to be as low as 10 or as high as 30. 15 is just the default. This map in particular is more exciting with more turns due to the mechanics on it," I explained.

As the game progressed, Leona took the lead.

“I’m in first! And I’ve got a massive lead. No way I’m losing,” Leona confidently stated.

I chuckled as I bided my time. Even though I was in last, I had a sneaky plan to turn things around.


Eventually it came down to the final 5 turns. I ended up receiving a gold portal as a pity gift.

“Hey, at least you’ll get a free crown, maybe you can climb up to second,” Leona jibbed.

Oh if only she knew. On the 3rd to last turn, I launched my attack. I used the triple spinner in an attempt to get a big roll. Getting just enough to pull it off, I began laughing evilly.

“Have you gone crazy? You’re in last place, and I’ve got a three-crown lead.” Leona smirked.

“Watch and learn.”

Leona’s smug grin morphed into jaw dropping shock as I paid the scarecrow king 150 gems to steal a crown from everyone putting me in first. It wasn’t over though, I then managed to reach the crown in the same turn and used my remaining gems to buy it. I now had a two crown lead and still hadn’t used my gold portal. Though I would need to be perfect in these next two minigames in order to get enough funds to buy another crown.

Then luck shown down upon me in two different ways. First, a bonus minigame was triggered, meaning I could get all the gems I needed in one go. Second and more significantly, Astrid raided.

“Checking on the competition? Well thanks for the raid,” I said as the view numbers spiked.

I assume she raided me due to Leona’s channel hosting mine. That was a really good idea on Leona’s part, though sadly I’d be showing my gratitude by crushing her this round.

“HOW!? How did you pull that off!? UGH!” Leona vented in frustration as she stared at the results screen.

I had beaten her by a single crown. Naturally, I already had a 3-crown lead before the bonuses were added. However, I only beat her due to pulling off that massive roll. If I didn’t snag that crown, she would have beaten me on gems thanks to the bonuses.

“Damn! You’re cruel. Glad I’m not going up against you tomorrow,” Astrid typed.

“No clue how cruel you can be at this,” I responded.

“You’ll see tomorrow (Wink emoji).”

I then ended the stream as I turned to Leona. She was smiling again and back to her cheery self.

“So how do you feel?” I asked.

“About the match, pissed. About tomorrow, excited. I’m gonna put all those nasty ploys you subjected me to to use.”

“Good thinking, though we have no idea how she plays, plus luck is a factor.”

“That’s part of the fun. Besides if I end up going bald, I’ll rock the look and ask her to let me bake my hair into some cupcakes so I can eat em.”

I couldn’t help bursting out in laughter.

“I wish I had your gutsiness. Alright, lets rest up for the big day.”


The next day we met up at the train station.

“Wait! Why do you have all those baking supplies? I thought you had faith in me!” Leona stammered.

“I do. I just figured you’d suggest baking her hair once you finished shaving her.”

Leona smiled and kissed me on the cheek.

“Wah! We’re in public!” I stammered.

“You’ve gotten a lot more confident yourself. If you keep stepping up, I’d happily be your girlfriend.”

Girlfriend huh? Well truth be told; I wouldn’t mind spending more time with Leona. Though we’d only met a few days ago, I had never been so happy before in my life. I resolved myself to eventually ask her out.


We arrived at the convention center and went to our reserved room. Astrid was already there lounging in one of the chairs as we entered. I put on my signature beak mask as she greeted us.

“Hej Leona and Crowboy. You bring your game?”

“Yep! E-Fortress rematch!” Leona declared.

“Well, aren’t you bold. Mine’s Brawl Brothers. What’s with the baking supplies?”

“It’s for your hair.”

Astrid burst out laughing as she placed her tote bag on the table.

“Great minds think alike. I brought some lingonberries and salmiak to snack on. Naturally I also brought the wax, and everything needed to shave you. You bring wasabi?”

“I always carry wasabi,” Leona boasted as she whipped out a tube from her jacket.

“Well then let’s begin.”

The two girls sat down as I was tasked with laying everything out on the table. They really did look like two peas in pod side by side. They both had long multicolored hair, wore similar attire, and had the same personality type. Both were smiling without a care in the world despite the fact that one of them was going to lose all their hair. It was like they truly were good friends despite the banter. I smiled as I watched them set up the stream. Regardless of what happened, I would happily support Leona.

Taylor J
Mario Nakano 64
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