You are currently viewing Vending Machine – 154 – Miss Dungeon (Part 5)
Wedding crown for the bride and earrings lie on the trellis.

Vending Machine – 154 – Miss Dungeon (Part 5)

Chapter 154: Miss Dungeon (Part 5)


Author: Hirukuma

Translated by Zzonkedd

Edited by Gumihou



All the contestants were now lined up on the stage.

In a sense, the one that stood out the most was the Tasmanian Devil-ish looking Suko. After all, it was only natural for an animal-like being to stand out among humans. No matter how exotic they look, could they really out-exotic an actual animal?

Since she was the only beastfolk creature on stage, all votes partial to this type would go to her. Not to mention all the votes from animal lovers.

Still, from the audience’s earlier reaction, I bet that Ramis was at least the second favourite.

Whilst she has my personal endorsement, I must not let my biases interfere.

If Suori and Kikoyu had entered individually, they might have garnered votes from those keen on… ahem… younger girls. However, I’m inclined to think that their similar appearances and shared age group might divide the votes.

The other contestants seem to have their own steadfast fans, so their affable dispositions and good deeds in everyday life might just convert to votes.

And, without a shadow of a doubt, the strongest contender is surely Shirley.

A woman of such bewitching beauty that even other women can’t help but stare. Her figure is nothing short of the idealised feminine form.

She’s in the night-time trade, her establishment enjoys a splendid reputation, and the gents who’ve been well-looked-after there are almost certainly going to vote for her.

That would seem to make her unpopular among the ladies, but that’s not the case.

She pays great attention to cleanliness, pricing, and maintaining a healthy working environment. Not once has a complaint from any of the women working for her reached Director Kuma.

Even though such practices would raise eyebrows in modern Japan, they are neither illegal nor unusual in this world.

Rumour has it that she employs quite a few of a race that looks just like humans but lives off human essence. This truly is another world, where Japanese norms simply don’t apply.

In essence, what I’m trying to say is that Shirley appears to have no weak points.

While in Japan, there would be a substantial number of people disapprove of Shirley’s line of work, it seems that few, if any, would feel the same in this other world. Judging from the crowd’s reaction, her popularity seems solid. I can’t help but wonder how Ramis and the others could possibly win against her.

“Let’s have another round of applause for the contestants!”

The sound of clapping brought me up from my sea of thoughts. The participants, for the time being, retreated into the wings of the stage.

“From here on, the contestants will change into their costumes for the talent section of the contest! Ladies, come and show off your special skills and charm the audience! For those without special gifts… they will come up with something that will showcase your charm and leave a good impression on the audience! In short, there’s plenty to look forward to in the next section, so keep your expectations high!

For now, we shall have a short interval. Do take this opportunity to visit the bathroom, have a drink or even a bite to eat from the vendors around us. There’s something for everyone, so take a look around and check out the vendors around us…”

Munami’s announcement had suddenly turned into some kind of advertisement for the stalls around us. Well, since they had nothing to do with me, I mentally reviewed the information that I had gathered on the contestants.

“Hakkon, sorry but, come here for a sec!”

“Sorry, it will be just for a bit, ‘kay?”

For some reason, Ramis and Hyurumi, who were supposed to be changing into their costumes were suddenly here. Without any further explanation, they picked me up and carried me off.

I was brought to the back of the stage where the contestants were in the middle of changing into their various outfits. Some looked like they were already done with their transformations.

Fia, Karios’ girlfriend was dressed in an all red ensemble. Red dress, red scarf, red shoes… in fact, it looked like some type of a stalker outfit I had once seen before…

Did she adjust her style to suit her boyfriend’s taste? Still, whether this get-up would earn recognition from the audience was unclear. On the other hand, the Director of the Beginner’s Floor looked like she approved of this all red outfit.

Well, solid prime colours usually make quite the statement, however, with one of the Directors regularly walking around dressed in a similar all red outfit on a daily basis, the impact would be quite limited. [1] She must have prepared this dress before anyone knew that the Director would be participating in the contest. It was too bad for her since this would mitigate the impact of that shockingly red dress.

That’s right, I don’t feel guilty at all about studying the contestants’ outfits. Especially since I am doing it in the name of gathering information to help Ramis and her friends win. Though reluctant, I must carefully observe the contestants while they change to make sure I don’t miss anything.

“Hey, Hakkon, you’re sure you’re not looking at anything strange? Your lights are flickering oddly, you know?”

Shoot! I’d been caught. The lights and switches betrayed my thoughts. I must keep a cool head and calm down.

“If you win, you get to go again!”

“Hakkon, you have a habit of using that phrase whenever you’re flustered,” said Hyurumi.

That Hyurumi is too sharp for her own good. I must do my best to rein in any careless remarks in the future.  Maybe I should just stop talking.

Just then, Shui looked over as though noticing us making a commotion here and started walking over. I wonder if she had some kind of request as well.

“Hey, so, I really don’t want to admit it but, at this rate, we’re probably… no, we’re definitely not going to beat Shirley. There’s really no way we can go up against her,” [1] said Shui frankly.

“I know that it’s a bit of a cheat, but if you have any product or item that could boost a woman’s appeal, please give it to us!”

Even Hyurumi sounded a bit desperate.


All three women pressed their hands together and bowed their heads as they pleaded for help.

Erm, I would really like to help, but since the clothes were already prepared there was really nothing much I could do, since I don’t have any unique, eye-catching accessories at hand.

The interval before the next session was only about one hour. What could be done in that hour?

To be honest, I still have a card up my sleeves just in case the girls wanted my help in this, but… I don’t really have enough time for all three of them.

“Ha-ve pl-an”

“No-t e-no-ugh”

Ugh, I really disliked how limited my syllable count is. I sound like a child who has just started speaking.

“So, I’m guessing that you have a plan, but don’t have enough… parts? Tools?”

“Too bad”

“Um, not enough… time?”


[2] Though I could technically answer with ‘un’ or ‘ye-es’, it takes a lot of effort, so it was still much easier to answer with the original vending machine set phrases.

“So, you have a plan, but not enough time for it? Is that so? Is it not enough time at all or not enough time for all three of us?”

[1] It was two different questions at the same time, but she going down the correct path. So…


[1] “Shoot, I should have asked this differently, is it only enough time for one person?”

[1] “Too bad”

[1] “Two people?”

[1] “Welcome”

“Well, I don’t know what Hakkon’s going to do, but if he could only help two people, it better be the two of you since you have a higher chance of winning,” [1] said Shui thoughtfully.

“Um, is that okay?” [1] said Ramis.

“It’s fine! It’s best to consolidate the resources for the two people with the higher chances of winning,” said Shui as she flashed a dazzlingly refreshing smile at the other two before stepping back.

“Sorry ‘bout this. Well, I’m more like the spare here anyway, but if we do happen to win by some freak chance, I’ll let you have the prize you want most,” said Hyurumi.

“Yup, yup, it’s a promise!” said Ramis.

Shui appeared quite happy with the verbal promises and walked off to undress herself.

The two other girls stepped into place, which happened to block my view of Shui. I’m not sure whether it was intentional or not…

“Hakkon, I can endure anything, so please!”

Faced with [1] Ramis’ earnest appeal, I have to admit that I am not entirely confident on whether I could actually do this, but I’ll give it my best shot. I will do my best to make them shine.


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I was returned to the judges’ seat just in time for the next part of the contest. That’s because after Ramis had put me outside the tent, Director Bear carried me off to the waiting room, or waiting tent rather, and interrogated me a bit.


My conscience is in the clear because I never accepted any bribes. So there.

Although I did lend a hand to some of the girls, I had no intention of showing favouritism in my judgement, so there was really no need to worry about me being swayed by bribery or personal preferences.

“Looks like it’s starting.”

When I looked at the stage, Akowi was already there.

In her hands were two large sacks bound shut by strings. I wonder what was in those sacks and what she was planning to do? Well, whatever it is, it looked promising.

From here onwards, the participants took the stage one after another, each showcasing their unique skills in their chosen attire.

Fia appeared in her very red outfit along with a set of tools on stage and demonstrated her potion-making skills.

Suko appeared on stage with a piece of meat that was more than half her size. I had expected it, but it was still a little shocking to see her devour that piece of meat in one go.

The Director of the Beginner’s floor appeared in her usual all red outfit along with a life-sized straw dummy. She then begin a series of relentless sequence of kicks that were too quick even for my eyes to follow. I guess her special skill is kicking.

Also, I decided not to bring up the fact that the dummy was painted entirely black. The Director of Darkness shivered next to me, but I didn’t bother to look at him.

Suori appeared in a glittering dress that would not look out of place in a high society event. A troop of men in black suits trooped in after her and started something that looked like a gymnastic performance.

By the way, Suori did nothing but stand in the back. Will this really be counted as a demonstration of her appeal? Anyway, good job, men in black.

Kikoyu appeared in her regular white outfit. However, she brought Botan and Kuroyata on stage to perform all kinds of tricks. Everyone seemed really appreciative of the performances, although it was not like she had trained them or anything. Botan and Kuroyata were just shockingly smart…

Finally, it was Shui’s turn. I had been looking forward to her appearance. Just what kind of outfit had she chosen? It would be interesting to see what kind of clothes she decided suited her most from that fashion magazine.


[Gumihou: Lol, Hakkon is such a guy]


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