Chapter 22:

Side Quest

Life Stream: Helping a cute girl gain views and followers

“This is your friend’s setup? I’m impressed,” my father stated as he gazed at Leona’s setup.

“I usually stream before or after her streams. Though since she’s out doing something for an upcoming stream, she gave me the key and told me I could stream on my own if I wanted to.”

“So that’s who that girl is in your videos.”

“Her name’s Leona, and she’s got a big channel. Sven’s sister Astrid also streams as well.”

“Duly noted. Well then, how about best 2 out of 3. If you beat me in 2 games, the prickly pear gummies are yours. I’d advise teaming up with Sven though. I’m not going to go easy on you.”

Sven whispered to me as we got set up.

“Is your dad really THAT good?”

“He’s a sly businessman. I imagine he’s got something planned.”


“YO! Welcome to the crow’s nest. Today I’ve got a challenge gauntlet, but it’s a little different than usual. I recently discovered a really sweet and delicious candy made with prickly pears. Apparently, you can only get them in the southwestern United States and parts of Mexico. Since I’m hooked on the candy, and want my friends to taste it, I asked our masked guest over here to provide me more. However, he only agreed to hand over his last package if I beat him in a best 2 out of 3 gaming gauntlet. Svenfjordsalt is also here to help me win. Apparently, the masked man is so confident, he thinks he can take both of us out by himself. I also just finished a new cooking video with Svenfjordsalt, so look out for that soon. Anyway, let’s begin.”

My father was wearing a wrestling mask and a cowboy hat. He looked ridiculous, but also menacing.

The first game was Maria Raceway.

“We just need one of us to beat him. You ready?” I asked Sven.

“Let’s gang up on him.”

To our shock, my father effortlessly dispatched us. Since it was just a 3-man race with no CPUs, certain items like the blue egg didn’t spawn. This made it difficult to take the lead from my father as he would merely block the items thrown at him with a pineapple. To make matters worse, he raced like a pro.

We crossed the finish line in a distant second and third from him. Chat began going crazy.

“No way! That guy’s good.”

“I know Crowboy’s bad at Maria raceway, but even him and Sven couldn’t beat him.”

“We need Leona for the clutch!”

The view number then began to creep up past 1,000.

“Alright, since I want to at least make this a challenge, why not a 2 v1 painmaker match in Maroon?” my father suggested.

Maroon is a popular 4 v 4 online game where you play as rabbits that shoot paint at each other. The painmaker mode is where two teams fight to bring a bazooka known as the painmaker into the other team’s goal. If a team failed to bring it to the goal before time was up, the team that brought it the furthest distance would get the win.

This was also a game I wasn’t too great at.

"So that’s how it is,” I thought as my father smirked at me.

Luckily, Sven was pretty good at the game.

“Choose this weapon. It has a great kit.”

At first, it seemed like my father was going to win. He wiped us out and brought the painmaker deep into our territory before we stopped him.

“You take the painmaker. I’ll clear a path,” Sven declared.

He was an amazing teammate. He did all he could to protect me as I inched closer to the base. My father wiped us out, but not before we took him out as well. Thanks to sub-weapon from Sven’s kit, we were able to jump back to where we left the painmaker. We managed to somehow take him out and get the painmaker to the goal.

“This is worse than going against you in Wyvern rainforest,” Sven groaned.

“Hey, don’t complain yet. We still have one more game to win.”

The final game would decide it all and would naturally be the most daunting challenge for us.


“Oh, come on! Metabob’s broken!”

“This ain’t a tournament boy.”

The final game was Brawl Brothers, and naturally my father picked Metabob. While I had been practicing, I didn’t know if we could beat him.

“Hey Sven, I’m good with Coyote, but are you good with Dingo?”

“Who said I’m choosing Dingo. That’s Sis’ main. My main’s someone or rather some girls that will give us a chance against that broken piece of shit.”

His main was Tatsumaki and Raika. They were swordfighters from the Pinosword Saga series.

“Who are those two?” I asked.

“Play their game and find out,” Sven winked.

The match would be a 2v1 two stock elimination round with a 10-minute time limit. I took a deep breath before hitting the start button.

The match was intense. Metabob managed to take out one of my stocks early with his broken block ability. Sven managed to take him out but lost a stock in the process. It was now 1 stock a piece. However, I was on the verge of elimination. One good hit and I’d go out.

Then the decisive play happened. Raika grabbed Metabob while I slammed a side attack into him. Metabob went flying but used his recovery to fly back. Then I unleashed Coyote’s side special, and landed the hit, sending Metabob pummeling toward the abyss.

“Too bad it’s Metabob,” my father sneered.

At the edge just before the blast zone, Metabob placed a platform saving him from defeat. Coyote began to fall. I would be eliminated.

“If only that bastard wasn’t so broken,” I thought.

Then Sven unleashed Tatsumaki’s recovery.

“Stay down you broken piece of shit!” he yelled as Tatsumaki’s sword slammed into Metabob and his platform, destroying it and taking them both to the blast zone. I was the only remaining player.

“Green team, WINS!” the announcer stated.


Sven and I highfived as my father chuckled and handed me the candy. I waved the candy in front of the camera before doing the outro.

“Well, that was intense! Massive thanks to Sven for the clutch. This victory’s thanks to you. Also, thanks to the masked man for the candy and a hell of a challenge. One final thing; apparently, I went viral in America for my ghost pepper execution. It’s not the most flattering thing, but I thought I’d let you know. The link will be posted in the chat. Anyways, thanks for watching.”


As we all walked outside, my father smiled.

“Not bad. You’ve really got a knack for that stuff.”

“That’s rich coming from you. You gave me and Sven hell.”

“Well, I do game to blow off steam after a long day of work. Anyway, I hope your friends enjoy that stuff.”

“Where are you heading off to?”

“I originally planned to have dinner with my boss and some associates. Luckily our little gauntlet helped blow off some calories from the dinner.”

Sven and I said goodbye as we headed off.

“Sis says they’re done and shopping at Kagemart,” Sven said.

“Best case scenario. Now everyone can try this stuff," I smiled.


I was surprised to find Kageyama and my grandfather talking with the girls in the store.

“I didn’t expect to see you here, grandfather.”

“I’m just here for the tutelage,” he laughed.

“Well since you’re here, might as well give you one of these too,” I said as I pulled out the candy.

“What’s that?” asked Leona.

“Prickly pear candy. It’s really sweet and good. Astrid and Kageyama should try some too.”

Everyone I gave a piece to immediately liked it.

“Not bad, though I probably shouldn’t get too attached to this sugary stuff,” my grandfather laughed.

“It’s really sweet! I’m glad I could try it!” Leona giggled.

“Wow, this stuff is good. Can't believe it comes from a cactus,” Astrid mused.

“Where did you get this stuff? This is a sweetness that could sweep the nation,” Kageyama asked as he placed his hands on my shoulders.

“Here’s the packaging,” I said as I handed him the bag the gummies came in.

Kageyama immediately pulled out his phone as he went to the back.

“Not bad man. If Kageyama likes it, he’ll order more of it. Great thinking to bring him a sample,” Sven said.

“Ga ha! Guess your father’s cunningness rubbed off on ya,” my grandfather teased.

This may have been an unplanned detour, but I was glad Leona had been able to try some of that delicious candy.

Mario Nakano 64