The Achimas System: How to Win at Roulette, Courtesy of Author Boris Akunin

Self is still reading The Death of Achilles, Boris Akunin’s absolutely mesmerizing mystery set in 19th century Moscow (It certainly doesn’t hurt that self has just seen “Pirate Radio,” and is envisaging Tom Wisdom as Akunin’s wily — but given over to stammering — detective, Erast Petrovich Andorin. Do dear blog readers know that when self was contemplating names for son, she nearly called him Andrei Bolkonsky? But, once again, self digresses)

Anyhoo, the bad guy in this novel is named Achimas. And he is addicted to roulette. But, being a bad guy, he always wins (at roulette, that is). And here is his System, as delineated by author Akunin:

The System was so simple and obvious that it was amazing that no one else used it. They quite simply lacked patience, restraint, and the ability to control their emotions — all the things that Achimas possessed in abundance. All that was needed was to bet on one and the same sector, constantly doubling up the stake. If you had a lot of money, sooner or later you would get back all that you had lost and win something into the bargain. That was the entire secret. But you had to place your bet on a large sector, not a single number. Achimas usually preferred a third of the wheel.

He walked over to the table where they played without any limits on stakes, waited until the ball had failed to land in one or another of the thirds six times in a row, and then began to play. For his first bet he staked a single gold coin. If his third did not come up, he he staked two gold coins on it the next time, then four, and then eight, and so on until the ball eventually landed where it should.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

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