It is, sometimes, to the point to celebrate humanity’s less industrious underside. And here, he thought, on the doorstep of the Hieda household – at the heart of the so-called Human Village – was this notion at its most pointed.
A man in his ripe twenties, clad in no-nonsense Winter hanten and trousers, the messenger had little issue gliding past the attention of servants milling about the estate yard. No one liked a messenger; least liked all were those liable to cut their own work short and dragoon the first retainer to make eye contact into running the final stretch. On nothing but a caprice, he tore off a salute at a nearby worker, to see the man all but duck out of the way. It was a superpower in everything except the name, and no Spellcard duel between Gensokyo’s fireball ladies may diminish the messenger’s pride in his own, secret little spell.
And, as is with most underhanded superpowers, his, too, was a double-edged sword. As a wise man had once been quoted, mis-quoted, and then paraphrased, couriers and runners would always have a use, regardless of when and where, because, “there will always be folks who will pay someone else to do the trivial things they could do themselves, but cannot be arsed to do.” It was this bit of tacit hypocrisy, after all, which allowed messengers like him their little niche in the town in the first place… and then, in an ironic turn, to bully menials from other social strata to step aside.
As long as he looked pregnant enough with responsibility, he could strut inside the noble Hieda household unchallenged by anyone with better things (not) to do.
Which, rather promptly, he did. Gensokyo’s cold season was no laughing matter; the mountainous, inland climate could hang icicles from a man’s brow if it caught him running too hard. Nor was this stranger to the Hieda, who kept the straw, clay and lath walls of their manor heated to cosy coat-off degrees. More inarguably occupied servants passed the messenger by while he plied the pristine halls, as soon to interfere with his work as to pull a hakutaku’s tail. Whenever none were in said passage, he skidded along on the polished cedar floor in childlike glee. The Hieda must have crooked the backs of many a man and woman to achieve such perfect sheen; and, the fun of it aside, it did the soul good to every now and then appreciate other people’s sacrifice. There was even a word for it. Schadenfreude, or something.
In a few, brief, and somewhat enjoyable moments, he slewed to a halt before a door he knew by both heart and wallet – bearing the Gensokyan character for “enquirers” calligraphed onto a rice paper scroll. He rapped the accustomed sequence of knock, knock-knock on the door’s varnished frame: a secret code – not quite Morse, but the next most concise thing – for, “Hey. Here I am. Would love to come in, if it isn’t too much trouble.”
He waited the appropriate window for the person beyond to think, “Hey. Here he is.” And then – to call out, in a prickly, feminine voice,
“Come in, already! If it isn’t too much trouble!”
Smiling his least troubled, the messenger slid the door aside – and came in.
At first sight, the room within would have seemed as any other office: sheaves of papers spread, in a loose semblance of order, across a number of tables and most other free vertical space. At another, a discerning messenger may mark out what set it apart from all similar others.
Among the bureaucratic build-up, at the most laden of the tables, smack dab between two tottering stacks of documents, a young noblewoman sat with her nose wrinkled by frustration. A slight, teenage thing, bundled inside a loose, flowery kimono, a stander-by who knew no better may think her out of place in a world of pure numbers and figures; yet, the preternatural, nigh-on eidetic memory, which Akyuu of the Hieda clan famously boasted, made her the undisputed queen of the realm. The Hieda, while nowhere so key as Gensokyo’s more worked families – the Itou, or the Toorima, to name but these – had their own trade to ply day to day, which had earned them a wealth of influence in the human town. And theirs, plainly, was just that. Trade.
As clerks and delegates, commissioners and proxies, the Hieda had made themselves essential to operations far and above the scope of a clan of pure bureaucrats. And young lady Akyuu, who would have been a mere display piece if she had been born to any other clans-head, was too able of a push-quill to let rot under a coat of make-up and jewellery. Although, not to take away from her now, the large, ornate brooch clipped to the side of her hair left no doubt as to the size of her eventual dowry.
Neither was the squint of her clever, violet eyes anything short of queenly when she spared the messenger an annoyed peer.
“… Gin,” she sighed, casting down again at the opened file on the table almost at once. “Good day, I suppose.”
“Young mistress Akyuu,” returned the messenger. “It has found me decent thus far.”
The small noblewoman gave him a dismissive wave of the quill. “Close the door, will you please? You are letting cold in.”
Gin Akamatsu, a runner for the Hieda clan since years and one of lady Akyuu’s troupe of errand boys, dutifully shut the door behind. A moment hence, and the office’s ambient air closed in around him: stuffy, warm, fraught with the scents of old scrolls, inksticks and the floral perfume worn by its noble occupant. There was a general impression of calm implacability about the place: a sort of peaceful cruelty which promised a lot of incensed shouting in the future, but not now and not anyplace near. And there, at its far end, a girl no older than sixteen, whose hand ruled the work-day for men and women all over town.
Gin contrived to look challenged as he negotiated the cluttered office floor, and was almost wounded when Akyuu graced his antics with none of the usual mock-exasperation. That lost him several ounces of good humour. Needling the young mistress was a high priority for any retainer, most of all ones who seldom stayed around long enough to suffer the consequences. Arriving at Akyuu’s desk, yet receiving none of her customary sass, near boiled over Gin’s bubbly spirit.
“Am I so late, young mistress?” he asked.
Akyuu refused to so much as glance away from her work this time. “… No,” she murmured back. “Why?”
Gin scrunched up his best wit. “Well, mistress, you sound more nettled than a rutting tanuki, for one.”
Akyuu’s quill froze mid-stroke. Her head snapped up to give the messenger a narrow, violet stare. “… What?”
“Mind, I didn’t even stop to get you flowers today,” Gin complained. Then feigned a revelation. “Ah! Could that be it? No flowers to smooth over the mood? Apologies, young mistress; I shall away to fetch an armful of freshly cut lilies at once.”
Akyuu’s replying eye-roll was cute, but unimpressed. “Gin Akamatsu,” she retorted, “if you had not been with the clan since I was little, I would have long fed you to my horse. Additionally, those flowers you bury me under? I pass those to the cooking girls. Apologise to them, not me. I wager they shall be crushed by this lapse.”
Gin’s face split wide with a grin which, through osmotic psychology, caused the edges of lady Akyuu’s lips to curl up in synchrony. What a smile that girl had. Gin would have run a marathon across Gensokyo to watch it all day, and would have gone as far as the flower stand a couple streets over for a few minutes. Akyuu awarded him a few heartbeats, which was already a bargain. Whatever was souring the young lady’s disposition was a stronger seasoning by half than the treacle of banter with a well-liked subordinate. It had to be, because Gin had it on telling experience that lady Akyuu was already sweeter on him than any other runner under her employ. Telling experience.
Gin tied it down, lest it up and very well run away with his imagination. Confidence, all the same, was a welcome feeling – even if it was a bit foxed by the young lady’s smile melting away like snowflakes from his coat minutes ago.
“All that flowery nonsense aside,” Akyuu confessed, “I am, indeed, a little nettled. One of your colleagues came up lame, see, and we are woefully short some legs.”
“I have those,” pointed out Gin. “A full set, even.”
Akyuu sketched a sagely nod. “Yes, yes. And a clever mouth I wish nothing less than stuffed full of tofu and left out at night for stray kitsune. Your area’s your own, Gin,” she sighed; “his assignments will have to be doled out among other runners, and they are not the sort you would call ‘fast and easy’ most days of the year. I anticipate none of it. Actually, I have but one ‘fast and easy’ type today, so you had best take it off my hands before someone else does.”
“I had best, then,” agreed Gin. “Heave me at it.”
“The soundest thing I heard all morning,” she admitted.
The young lady of the Hieda made to rise from her desk, extending out a hand that would have been white and regal if it had not been thin and stained with ink. Gin took it in his, squeezing the stiff fingers, and aiding his dainty employer to her feet. And though he was by no measure a giant, there was the sudden unsteadiness in his grip of someone who had picked up something incredibly precious, and hadn’t enough savings to cover the potential damages. Only the same, tied-up memory as before reminded Gin that the little lady Hieda was still, in spite of her frailty, a woman who had taken studies of all sides of man – with especial attention to how to wrap him around her little finger. A knot was loosed on the memory by the wash of lady Akyuu’s floral perfume as she tugged her palm free and swished by the messenger’s side for something behind him.
And then, it burst free at the sight of her cute, kimono-wrapped butt being thrust in the air when she bent down to gather up a sheaf of invoices from the floor.
Gin, the lowly messenger, stared at the young noblewoman’s presented rear. He hadn’t at all to conjecture how it would atop his commoner lap – because he knew exactly how. He hadn’t to speculate what it would feel like to have those smooth buttocks slide, in shameless nude, back and forth on his bare thighs – because mistress Akyuu had shown him exactly what, a night not a fortnight before… when she had used his natural abilities as a man to scratch a really itchy spot deep inside her belly.
Unreal. This was the best descriptor for that night, because there was indeed something unreal about a girl whom Gin had watched grow above waist-level, then plump out in all the customary places, happily committing sloppy, premarital sex with him on the office floor. All too easy, the particulars of that age-induced tragedy came rushing back. A long day and an even lengthier shift, the tail end of which had left Gin loafing about the office awaiting his pay-out – while the industrious young woman pored over a veritable tower of end-of-the-month figures for the estate’s personnel. Gin of then did not too much begrudge the delay; Akyuu’s workplace was anyhow warmer than the town’s communal housing where he came to anchor each night, and loitering around nobility by itself had a certain braggartly shine which the messenger found singularly gratifying.
It did, all the same, sting somewhat once Akyuu stamped the final document, wiped her hands, stood, and curtly announced she had no money for him.
“I can ill recall,” she argued when pressured, “ever confessing I had it, in the first place. And it is way too late to bother our treasurer now. What is it, after midnight? You should have asked, Gin. I was right here.”
“Ah, but you were having such fun!” snapped Gin, bitterness briefly gelling over his buoyant soul. “What did you reckon I was waiting around for, young mistress? Witching hours?”
Akyuu folded her arms, in their rolled-up sleeves, under her chest. “I reckon,” she aped his tart tone, “that I boss you enough on the job. What you do off of it – is none of my beeswax. Wait around, if and where you please. Official excuses besides, it’s not like I mind having you here.”
“Well, I—!” Gin launched off… but found the unexpected acceptance to have stolen his secondary thrusters. Akyuu’s tired, innocent face compounded gravity; and, together, they dragged his rising temper down to ground level. “… Argh, pooped,” he groaned his formal surrender. “I can’t rightly win with you, can I? And here I was bent on getting pissed as an Oni in a wine vat tonight.”
Akyuu’s lips shaped a wan smile. “Sorry?”
“Never you mind,” wheezed Gin, sprawling on a clear stretch of the straw-mat floor. “All in all, you have the right. It’s all on me. I’ll swing by on the morrow, and wrest my demons on my own tonight.”
Akyuu forbore to comment, hovering over him with the faint expression of a woman whose secret shame had been brought too close the skin of her conscience. Gin skewed a dejected smile at the overworked young mistress, and felt a rush of rather inappropriate emotions when she returned it – drawing a lock of her silky hair behind an ear. Shivering candlelight played along the golden leaves of her brooch and that half of her cute, barely matured face.
Under some old, inconspicuous carpet, deep in the basement of his heart, Gin had stored the written confession that a large part of him was in love with the young lady. It could well have been the whole of him. And now, he found his attention sticking to her features. Akyuu… no, young mistress Akyuu, may be of age and in eminence in the household currently; and yet, one may hardly forget the tiny, resolute girl who went about ordering the staff in a squeaky, if eerily close, impression of her late grandmother’s voice.
Against his sincerest wishes to treasure that version of Akyuu forever, his fatigued mind clung to quite different details now. Those coy, carefully rouged lips. Those slight shoulders. Those slim arms, that made you want to keep them away from anything heavy. The outline of Akyuu’s modest, but unmistakeable bust, beneath the layers of bright kimono. And those hips that could cause a pile-up on the town’s main thoroughfare.
Mouth drying, Gin lashed his eyes back up to Akyuu’s face. Akyuu, if she had caught, or minded, his ogling, admitted to neither.
At length, some ruling was made in the brilliant palace of her mind, and urged the young mistress on to speak out.
“… Gin Akamatsu?” she addressed him. “Will you take an advance… in nature?”
Gin blinked. “In… er, what?”
Lady Akyuu rolled her eyes. “Sex,” she said. “I am asking if you want to have sex, as an advance on your wages.”
Gin Akamatsu swallowed his suddenly evacuating heart back down, and examined the girl who would attempt to eviscerate him with sheer words. Akyuu’s face was a museum-perfect piece on how to blend royal composure with a dash of smugness. Someplace in a reservoir usually reserved for work, the messenger found in himself the self-control to speak like a professional.
“First of all,” he machinegunned out, “yes, please, would love to, absolutely, thank you. Second of all… Why?”
Akyuu’s expression shifted farther to the smugger side. She switched on her feet, the bottom edge of the kimono brushing her bare ankles. “First of all,” she teased him, “I do feel put out, letting you go unrewarded tonight. Second of all… I like you, Gin. And I have it on a whole case of evidence you do not hate me, either.”
Gin pulled a tragic face. “Can I see that case? And burn it?”
Akyuu smiled at the roundabout confession. “Third of all, though… I am somewhat at my limit, myself.”
“You are a big and lettered boy, so I shall tell you outright. I have been hornier than a Celestial maiden all day today. My period is in two weeks or so, and this is when I am at my most… restless.” There was a slanted, expectant look. “… You do know what a period is, yes?”
Gin considered pretending a lapse of memory – then, pretended not having considered it at all. “Yes. Yes, I know. Your head maid poured that bucket of ice-water on me when you were in absentia, once. It was a deep bucket,” he added.
“Vivi did?” Akyuu’s eyes betrayed a touch of amused surprise. “That starch-butt? Would you fancy that… At any rate, other than, ah, seeing red, this is the worst time for me. Sometimes, I have to take twice as long to do the same columns because my thoughts keep… leaping. If you had not been fluttering around here like an early moth, Gin,” she confided, archly, “then I would have long before taken a break and gone to take care of it. As it stands, my underwear may well be ruined. I could hardly even check, because of you.”
“And so, you want me to… take responsibility?”
“Assuming you mean to harry my tailor for a new pair,” countered Akyuu, “then I have plenty other servants to be responsible about it. I want you to go home tonight not feeling indignant over staying so late for no return. And, if I can have my itchy place rubbed a little in the same stroke… then that puts us nicely in cahoots.”
Gin stared, slack-jawed, at the young noblewoman who could, if his ears were to be believed, talk laps around casual, illicit sex.
Akyuu appeared to read the Morse of his thoughts from his eyes. “… Want me to say it filthier?”
Gin swallowed. “… Yeah.”
Akyuu smiled, smug as a cat in a tubful of cream. “… I want to use your hard cock,” she whispered, “to massage my wet, naughty pussy. Want me to fuck you and cream myself on your dick?”
There was a sticky, not-yet-pregnant-but-surely-soon-to-get pause. Then, Gin coughed explosively.
“Gods—” he wheezed. “You could destroy a man’s pants with that!”
Akyuu shrugged coquettishly. “Tit for tat.”
Gin could not resist the rib. “What would your head maid do if she heard this sort of verbiage crawling out of your mouth, young mistress?”
“Vivi? Arrange for a dictionary for me to read, like as not. That woman’s mind is stiffer than a… a cock.”
Another potentially expectant pause ensued as Akyuu looked to him for validation.
“Yes, right, jolly,” he obliged. “I do still want to… do all that stuff, though.”
He had to admire the look lady Akyuu gave him. It implied, rather with diplomacy, that any answer to the otherwise would have been met with the swiftest clonk upwise the chin on this side of Gensokyo. He deflected it with a boyish leer of his own. The resulting air of shamelessness had them both smiling just a hue sheepishly.
“Mm, well… I am glad I hadn’t tainted my lips for nothing,” she granted. “Shall we, then? Sit back and undo your belt for me, please. Oh, and will you want me to leave my panties on, or…?”
“Take them off,” Gin replied at once.
Akyuu’s replying smirk told him she was happy to do nothing less. “Someone wants to see as much as he can, hmm? Very good…”
And then, with a graceful, petite motion, she tugged the sash of her kimono loose. And while the complex piece held together even so, it did allow Akyuu to then part her outfit’s ankle-long skirts. A pair of slim, rice-white legs slid into candlelit view, topped by a pair of demurely white panties, stretched across the young woman’s smooth, bare hips. What was less demure was the noticeable, wet stain on their front. Akyuu hadn’t lied; even as she slipped her thumbs under their band and began to pull them down her thighs, a gluey thread strung between the panties and her now-nude crotch.
Gin could catch but a shadow of a neatly trimmed bush, before Akyuu bent forward to guide her unmentionables down to her ankles. Once they reached the floor, she stepped out of them with one foot – and kicked them away with the other.
“Gin?” she called out to the gawping messenger. “Your belt?”
It should be quite difficult for a man to jump a foot into the air while flat on his seat, but not if the man was Gin Akamatsu at that moment. Scrambling up, he ripped the belt out of his trousers, and then skinned them down, underwear and all, down to his knees. Then, he flopped back onto his rear. Akyuu smirked, all good boy-like – shuffled forward – and eased herself down onto Gin’s lap. Gin tensed at the sensation of her bare derriere squishing against his naked thighs. It went further; Akyuu’s derriere was, in fact, soft and nigh-on scalding from hours of use in front of a desk. Amazing though its weight felt atop him, nevertheless, Gin’s eyes were riveted to another of Akyuu’s tactically exposed areas.
As if sensing his scrutiny – or, really, triangulating its overt point – the young lady of the Hieda fanned her legs wider out. All the while, she drew the halves of her robe farther apart – until her cute, plain bellybutton joined the picture. Akyuu’s belly itself was flat and smooth as a baby’s – only swelling slightly with each of her shallow breaths. Soon, and, Gin realised, it would be bulging from something else altogether; it took no great physician to recognise that, what the young mistress was demonstrating to her lowly messenger, was exactly from where and to where his manhood would be travelling inside her, once it was ready.
That it wasn’t, even so, provoked a disappointed hum from Akyuu’s chest.
“… Nervous, are we?” she asked.
“Yeah,” grunted Gin. “… Sort of. I mean, you’re dead sexy, and I want you down on me, but—”
“No, no worries,” Akyuu dismissed his fumbling. “I understand. I sprang this on you a bit out of the blue. We will get this guy up, no problem.”
“Can I, er…” he began, as Akyuu moved. “Can I play with yours, too?”
“Mhm. I think I’d like that.”
That alone drained some of Gin’s blood from his ears and pumped it down where it was needed more. Akyuu gave him an appreciative little “Nn…” when he skimmed a hand up the length of her naked thigh, the muscles beneath her thin, pale skin tensing at the touch. Gin was made to return the wordless compliment when he felt his mistress’s tiny digits wrap around his perking manhood. Akyuu spared it no dignity; she spat into her right hand, peeled the foreskin with the left, and began to rub the slimy inside of her palm on the exposed crown. It gave Gin’s neighbour downstairs plenty of good reasons to quit being uncooperative. An additional one was engendered when his hand arrived at Akyuu’s damp privates.
And they were damp. The prim patch of dark pubes on Akyuu’s groin was soaked with perspiration. Gin had but to sneak his fingers below to find her crotch was no better for wear: her lower lips hot and puffy and smeared all over with warm, sticky arousal. He hadn’t more than to drag his longest finger down the slit in the middle for its tip to part the slippery labia and sink into Akyuu’s hot, eager receptacle. Stomach clenching, lady Akyuu accepted the first and the second knuckles of his finger – tight and defiant at the entrance, but softer and more inviting the deeper in he pushed. Once the finger was in to the root, its whole length was engulfed in hot, cushiony goodness that could only ever feel better around one other part of his body.
Gin and his dick shared a thought. It said: “one finger is fine and dandy, but I will never fit inside if she can’t accommodate two.” Thus and therefore, the astute messenger carefully extracted his middle finger from the young noblewoman’s clinging insides. And then, no sooner than they at last let go, he returned double the amount. Her wonderfully wide hips juddered as her vagina easily swallowed the pair of intruders whole.
An unladylike noise squeezed out of lady Akyuu’s chest, and she gripped his – now fully raised – flagpole in reprisal. “Nnhyou are lucky,” she gasped, “that I came pre-prepared.”
“Sorry,” he started, “was that—”
“No. Goodness, no, I was—” Akyuu seemed flurried for a moment. “… Can I not tease you about this? Or are you the only one allowed to be nervous?”
“Hieda Akyuu? Nervous?” Gin was brimming over with incredulity.
Hieda Akyuu made a toss with her head. “And would you not be?” she returned. Then, realisation dawned. “No. Never mind, do not answer. I will have you know, I am nervous. Hnn. I am the eldest daughter of the household… yet I am about to have sex with a courier. That would make any woman of status… well, at the least giddy. Will you, haah, quit diddling me when I am speaking?”
Gin kept gently poking his middle and ring fingers in and out of her squirming and obviously very pleased vagina. “… No,” he decided.
“Scoundrel,” hissed Akyuu. The hiss rounded off to a stifled, horny moan. On the business end of her arm, lady Akyuu’s hand remembered its all-important mission. It snaked around Gin’s full erection, and began to softly glide up and down its length. For the span of uncounted minutes, Akyuu of the Hieda clan dutifully jerked her employee off, while his fingertips searched her vagina end to end for spots which caused her sultry, moaning voice to come out a few notes higher. “… And your, nff, your damn cock,” she panted at length, patience straining; “it’s so damn big, Gin. It even curves. Gods of heaven, if you pushed this in at a good angle… Where do you get off on having such an obscene cock?”
Gin and his cock spoke as one. “Inside you?”
For the skin of a heartbeat, lady Akyuu was startled. Then, her employee’s manhood flexing in her grip reasserted the inevitable. “Nnha. Ha. You are. You are, too. Aren’t you?” A sleazy smile busied her pink lips. “Mmh. You are going to put this brutish thing inside me, yes? You are going to use my naughty pussy to get your rocks off?”
All around Gin’s wriggling fingers, Akyuu’s walls squeezed down with perverse longing. Warm, gooey arousal dribbled between his knuckles. “That—” He choked up at the echo of the young mistress’s voice saying pussy in his head. “… That was the plan, yeah.”
“Then do that,” urged the young mistress. “Take me. Stuff me full. Fuck me. Fuck me.”
A thought occurred to Gin that the echoing pussy must have knocked something loose in his skull, because he was suddenly watching himself yank his fingers out of his mistress and make a grab for her butt, quite precluding any conscious clearance. Lady Akyuu, as well, let go of the allegedly grand prize jutting out of his crotch. On her small, delicate knees, exhorted by his hand, the young mistress scuffed forward – until her dripping womanhood was hovering above Gin’s upright, throbbing erection. Gin steadied it by the thick base, while Akyuu reached down to spread her engorged labia.
And then, still goaded by the hand vised around her ass, she lowered her hips.
Gin’s breath hitched when her warm, supple lips slid around and smothered his glans. Above, lady Akyuu switched her fingers to the stiff, prominent nub of her clitoris. There, she began to brush them in tiny, frantic circles, while her fidgeting vagina sank farther down Gin’s penis. It wasn’t two inches deep when Akyuu released a cute squeal, and her body stiffened from neck to toes.
“… Lady Akyuu?” asked Gin.
Lady Akyuu controlled her rebelling body with some effort. “… Nothing. It’s nothing. Haah. A… A suspicion confirmed, that is all.”
“You shouldn’t force yourself,” said Gin’s mouth. A floor down, the head of his dick twitched disagreeably in Akyuu’s snug, wet embrace.
Akyuu brushed him off with a derisive smile. “Say that again when you are up to here,” she challenged, touching an unoccupied hand to her bellybutton.
Then, waiting no return witticism, she resumed screwing her pussy down Gin’s waiting penis. Inch by throbbing inch, her womanhood enveloped the thick, curved shaft, her honeyed walls tensing, then gleefully parting before the chubby glans. Akyuu kept flicking and tapping her swollen clitoris, gasping and moaning sweetly under her breath as the lowly messenger’s hard cock wormed closer and closer to her noble womb. Gin gritted his teeth, in great earnest attempting not to focus on the way her slick, sugary walls hugged around and scrubbed the bare, vulnerable head of his penis.
And then, it happened. Akyuu’s pink, puffy labia came to a weary rest against Gin’s crotch – hilting his sizeable manhood inside her vagina.
Gin threw his head back, a hoarse growl of satisfaction loosed into the office’s night air. That alone was too long to miss out on the indecent spectacle playing out in his lap. Lady Akyuu sat very still, little, white teeth nipping on her bottom lip – as if she were afraid to move while the large, immoderate dick was sheathed so riskily close to her womb. And she was, in happenstance, very right. Stripped first by her soft, elegant hands, then scraped to rawness by the sensual insertion, Gin’s endurance threatened to empty any time soon – and empty his load into Akyuu’s baby room together with. Conscience, somehow, spoke over the pressure of Akyuu’s pussy being applied all over his elated dick. There, stuck pregnable atop it, was the girl whom Gin, a simple messenger, had looked on from afar as she had grown from adorable childhood into modest femininity. And now, that haughty girl, the noble daughter of the Hieda, was about to get her belly pumped full of his peasant spunk. Immoral merely began to describe the crime which Gin was now perpetrating with lady Akyuu’s full, licentious consent.
That quiet connivance was made even firmer when the young noblewoman nudged her hips a little forward, taking his commoner dick that bit deeper into her refined pussy, while her scanty weight shifted pleasantly in his lap. There was an undertone of mock rhetoric in her voice when she spoke up.
Gin strove not to sound too much like a caveman. “… Never been more. You?”
“A bit full,” admitted lady Akyuu. “Ah, no, no – do not you start, Gin. I love this feeling; I wanted nothing less. I need a moment to adjust, is about all. You are bigger than any of my… um, toys. So hot, too. Hng…” A hint of mischief played with the corners of her lips. “Think you can say it again? That I should not force myself?”
Gin grinned a mite cavemanishly. “Force yourself more, please.”
“In a moment,” she promised. “Meanwhile, have you not something else to say to me?”
“… I really,” blurted out Gin, “really, really want to come inside you, lady Akyuu.”
The replying smile was as indecent as it was fast schooled by the young mistress. “Mm. Yes, well, I rather imagined,” she granted, pushing her hair back behind her ear. “I suppose, since you are already up to here, it would be a waste not to. I would be a poor sport, too, if I said I hadn’t a bit of a thing for, mm… shall we say, risk? And, on that note… Are you very backed up, Gin?”
“… Yeah,” he groaned. “You’ve been rushing me off my feet lately, young mistress. Haven’t really had the head to… er, let off.”
“Then, how about we make this your retribution?” proposed Akyuu. “For being browbeat by the lady, the courier takes his hard cock and unloads all his grievances and pent-up stress into her forbidden womb… Haah. Now there’s an idea I should jot down. Some of my readers would have a field day.”
Gin willed his vengeance to remain at room temperature – for now. “What if you—” he began to ask – and stopped. Then, he began to ask anew, because sanity had reared its ugly head and was whaling on his caveman mind with a club. “What if you… er, you know? Get with child? It is your… what do you call it, fruitful day? Isn’t it?”
“Ah, for shame, Gin,” said Akyuu, all arch disenchantment. “Much as you… well, much as you and I would love it, that simply isn’t an option. I am not the healthiest, and flowered very late; untimely childbirth could very well kill me. Not to mention killing you, once my father catches wind of it.”
Gin put on a hanged man’s grimace. “Coming inside is a no go, then?”
Akyuu shook her gorgeous head. “That, I did not say, Gin,” she chided. “See, here. Women like me, of rank, we have our… let us call them, emergency solutions? A morning afterthought, if you will.”
“Some deal of medicine?”
“Yes, you could say. In fact—” Akyuu’s expression sweetened with impishness, “—I so await telling Vivi to get me some tomorrow. The look on her face should be something to write about… At any rate,” she returned to their previous, more pregnant topic, “do feel free to finish inside me. Only, do not expect anything to come of it. You are going to have to find another girl to give you children. Sorry.”
“I am,” Gin sighed, “much disillusioned.”
“Yes, I am acutely aware how crushing it is for you menfolk when a woman tells you she shan’t be carrying your children,” said Akyuu, jaundiced observer of male foibles. “On the bright side, you get to try to make me. And, on that scandalous note… I am good to be tried, now.”
Some gear in Gin’s internal steam engine caught, and linked his brain back to the red-hot piston below his waist. Lady Akyuu’s precious womanhood, having reconciled with the rough treatment, wasn’t crimping his shaft anymore; all down its length, Gin could feel it beset by the soft, feathery heat of the young mistress’s special place. It squeezed and kissed his veiny erection all over when the messenger locked a hand about his lady’s hip, jamming its thumb into the dimple formed seductively between her thigh and overstuffed belly. His purely aesthetic appreciation of her contours was missed by a mile by the horny, petite noblewoman, who took it instead for a cue to dispense with the foreplay – and move on towards their mutually abided, one-night impregnation.
An effort of will later, and her pink, glistening labia were being dragged up his curving length, clinging to every exiting inch – leaving them sticky with love juice and pulsing with the need to get back inside her warm, fertile embrace. There was a precipitous moment, when her pussy lips arrived at Gin’s swollen, throbbing glans, wherein he had to exert every moral fibre in his body so as not to drive lady Akyuu’s hips back down to feel her butt slam into his lap, and her walls clench as they slid down his dick. It was the sight of lady Akyuu lewdly pushing her middle and ring fingers into her mouth – then, reapplying them, slimy with saliva, to her stiff clitoris – that stayed him from no doubt startling his regal little employer half to hysterics.
Oblivious altogether of how close she had come to screaming, Akyuu smiled, as princess-like as befit her station – and then moaned, like a fairy on a sugar high, pinching and rubbing her sensitive nub, while her pussy descended the fat, sloping length of Gin’s dick. In a few jaw-clenching heartbeats, it swallowed him up from tip to root – encouraged the whole way by the young mistress’s furious masturbation. A quick, hasty kiss with her womb, and Gin’s manhood was once more being forcibly extracted from her steamy, squirming depths, leaking beads of milky precum that only joined Akyuu’s sexual fluids in dribbling down his freed length by the end of the up-stroke. The lady and the messenger both voiced their enjoyment in an indecent duet as she began to screw her trembling hips back down the stiff guide. With little in the way of innocence, she angled its bare tip at the same, secret spot it had poked once before. Her walls squeezed down happily when it appeared to hit home.
Gin crushed his unoccupied hand into a fist, with great willpower tearing his focus from where his swollen endowment was vanishing inside his lady’s tight womanhood, up to said lady’s excited face. Akyuu’s was a wilder face than any he had seen in undisclosed dreams: eyes afire with craving, a sloppy grin stuck to her lips, and a warm, rosy blush all over. As Gin’s erection bottomed out, and their groins smacked together, the young lady’s tiny, white teeth briefly clamped down on her bottom lip. Akyuu hissed her raunchy indulgence, her modest chest heaving underneath her clothes.
Without ever soliciting his brain, Gin’s hand climbed from lady Akyuu’s hip, up the front of her kimono, to pull the priggishly tucked halves apart. It was halted fingers away from the goal by one of Akyuu’s own.
“Nn, no!” she snapped. “Hff, bad boy!”
“But I want—” Gin began to protest. Then, words turned a rather complicated thing when the young lady’s crotch was ground into his. “… I want,” he managed to groan, resolutely, nonetheless, “I want to see… your tits, please.”
Akyuu’s neat, purple bangs were shaken left and right. “Nnh, no,” she moaned, somehow imperious even over frenzied arousal, “no, no way. May I remind you, Gin, that this is, hff, an advance on your wages? I am the daughter, nngh, the daughter heiress of the house that pays for your rice and water. Is it not plenty, that you get to fuck—” she stressed the fact by thrusting with her hips, bringing his cock upright in her belly, “—and blow your load inside me? Can you even count, hnn, the number of men who would ride in the tilts for my hand in marriage? To touch me where you are? And this is not enough, still? You are a pair, you and your damn, greedy cock…”
“… Will you let me see, then?” Gin wanted to know.
Akyuu spat a sudden, clipped chuckle. “No! Were you not listening? Sex and not a single nipple. Kissing is off the menu as well, before you unavoidably muse on that recourse.”
“Sex is fine—” Gin frowned, “—yet not kissing?”
“We,” she reminded him, matter-of-factly, “are not lovers, Gin Akamatsu. You are a courier for the clan Hieda, and I am your lady superior; by rights, you are the last person with whom I should be tied in a relationship. Understood? Or shall I summon Vivi right now and have her expound?”
There had been an awful emphasis on the “pound” part of the threat; so, while no less puzzled as to why sex ranked below kissing on lady Akyuu’s liaison stepladder, Gin volunteered a meek nod. “… Understood. I’ll try to live.”
“You have, up to now.”
“Yes, sure,” agreed Gin, “but now I’ve the idea in the back of my head…”
Akyuu’s answering smirk could have stood for anything from “Earn it, and I might,” to “Attempt it, and perish.” Clarification was forgone, filled in for by the young noblewoman once more dragging her drenched pussy up the courier’s lowborn dick. Gin, in a just, if vengeful turn, waived leering at the anyway un-kissable parts of his lady, in favour of ogling the one to which he had been granted the full, womb-deep admittance.
Then and there, the conduct and ethics, which had been clamouring for a vacation for a good while already, were given the temporary boot; and Gin confessed to himself, in the resulting silence of his conscience, that the circumstance he was in was nothing short of fantastic. May be that lady Akyuu’s insides were sliding around his girth like those of a seasoned prostitute; on the outside, however – between her trimmed bush and the smooth belly that hadn’t yet been ravaged by childbirth – it was evident that the eldest daughter of the Hieda was barely old enough to be doing what she was doing. A girl ten years his junior was bouncing her hips up and down atop him, moaning like a woman grown whenever the head of his dick ground against a less experienced spot of her vagina. And then, each time her adolescent slit reached the base of his shaft, her flat belly tensed and bulged from containing his whole, hard manhood. Again, and again, little lady Akyuu raised and dropped her nude hips up and down his slippery hard-on, teasing his bare glans with every single fold it squeezed past inside her unduly mature pussy. All the while, she coaxed it to work harder still with hectic taps and flicks of her cute, pink clitoris.
At once amazing and absolutely, morally bankrupt, it was all Gin could wish, for the young mistress to get off of him and get down on all-fours, so he could plough her like a wild beast. That was the caveman speaking; and everything that Gin in actual did, was to begin nudging his waist back and forth, quickening the insertion by a little first, then about by half, once lady Akyuu slowed her motions in revenge. Soon, and their arrangement was reversed altogether: with the young mistress leaning forward, propped on one army by his chest, while the courier thrust into her hovering pussy from below. He might ache on the morrow; it was a bargain price to pay to keep poking his lady’s womb.
The office air grew rife with panting, smothered curses and the sounds of body parts smacking wetly into one another. There was no lack of confidence in Gin’s mind that anyone padding by for a midnight snack would get a messy earful of what the young lady of the house sounded like while her pussy was being scoured from end to end by a long, rugged cock. The lady in question was nowhere so introspective; she moaned and gasped with abandon at each rhythmic insertion – awarding the especially good ones with a breathless, “There! Yes, fffuck, fuck me there!” And when, owing to the intensifying pace of the sex, Gin’s cock popped out to ride up the smooth valley of her butt instead of her feverish pussy, it was she who scrambled for it first, whining, “Nooo, put that back in, put that back in!” – then screwed her hips down by herself. Akyuu’s back arched, and she grabbed at one of her clothed breasts as her belly was again crammed full of the courier’s raging manhood.
Care and scruples had long exited the stage; and, now that theirs was no longer a restraining presence, Gin gripped the young lady’s buttocks to fuck her in earnest – shoving himself into her soaked passage, then scooping out the soft folds with no concern for her own pleasure of comfort. Akyuu loved it either way, enduring but a couple seconds of the assault before her dignity was cracked, and her enjoyment came pouring out at volume. Toying with her stiff, little button turned at first difficult, then flat-out unwieldy as Gin jostled her hips back and forth, so the young lady smartly laid both her palms on the courier’s chest, and let his pumping cock drive her pussy the rest of the way to an orgasm.
It was not a long stretch. Sooner than either of them would have liked, Akyuu’s ecstatic moans turned a mite desperate.
“Gin, Gin, Gin, Giiin,” she panted, each distinct “Gin” chased by a slap of her buttocks against the courier’s thighs, “I’m about— I’m going to—”
“About— fuhh, time!” Gin groaned back.
Lady Akyuu, teary-eyed and at the frayed end of self-control, could only whimper, “Sorry— ahnn! Sorry, just— just a little— hngg, there, there, that place, rub that place, yes, yes, hnnng, YESSSS!”
And then, with that final, perverse exclamation, she jabbed her nails into Gin’s chest, and seized up from the shoulders down to the curling toes. Gin moved on pure, male instinct: forcing his overstimulated dick past her clenching walls, and pressing the tip head against the mouth of her womb.
The immorality of the act alone would have well thrown him over the edge; with lady Akyuu’s wringing insides all around his length, when he came, his first shot was nothing short of explosive. Akyuu crumpled atop him, twitching and moaning and fighting for breath with her own, climaxing body, while spurt after spurt of Gin’s hot, pent-up seed gushed straight into her snug baby room. And though the continued ejaculation left his hips a weak, jittery mess, he held the young noblewoman petite ass in place – ensuring, above all, that every last drop of his thick cum ended up where it was the most liable to get his lady pregnant.
And then, spent and exhausted, he laid his dizzy head – and listened to Akyuu coasting out the remainder of her orgasm.
Throughout the ensuing minutes – and they were heavy, leaden minutes – Gin did his damnedest not to contemplate what the had done to the girl he had once called “little Akyuu,” much to her squeaky chagrin. And he hadn’t had an astounding success, because – by the time now not-so-little Akyuu rose to a sit and stroked her fingers across the belly that was now pumped full of his seed – he was hard as morning wood and ready to revalidate that the young mistress would leave the room a teen mother.
Akyuu leered at him from under a tousled, sweat-stuck fringe. “… Already back in action?” she asked.
“You are a sturdy one… Shall we take care of that, too?”
Gin stared. “… Can we?”
“Well—” lady Akyuu tweaked her waist, a smile crawling out onto her flushed face; “since you already came inside once, I suppose me one more will do no harm… Ah, but,” she cautioned, “you do the moving, this time. I will be lucky if I can walk straight tomorrow… There are pillows at my writing table; we can take it there. You will carry me, will you not, Gin?”
Gin did. And then, he fucked her atop the office table – until she deigned to let him touch his lips to hers if – and only once – he managed to give her another orgasm.
Gin Akamatsu shook out of the memory, not unlike a dog shakes out of water – except leaving his surrounds in poorer wear. He spared a thought for the tailors of Gensokyo, whose Winter creations went a long way to disguise the compromising spear or cane stuck down a trouser leg. Lady Akyuu was giving him a look which suggested the office in the morning was a distraction-free zone, where spears were left at the doorstep with the concierge. Gin returned it with a polished one of his own.
He'd not seen an inch of lady Akyuu’s nude skin since that night a fortnight ago, and he had grown very acquainted with the fact. Steady, he said to his spear, or I shall leave the fly down next we go outdoors.
“This—” the young mistress, awash in perfume and temper, was fanning a folded sheet of paper his way, “This is the easy one – for you.”
Gin Akamatsu took the invoice, flicked it open, and examined his immediate future. He found much too much of it to like.
“… Salt,” he read. “A sack of dodgasted salt?”
“A sack of dodgasted salt,” Akyuu confirmed, “from a friend of the clan to a friend of mine. Indispensable for cleaning ink out of old print fonts – at least, I am told. It’s a quarter-hour of brisk walk from the salt merchant’s to the printer’s; you can do it in twice as long if you fancy a rest along the way. And, if I may innocently remind you – they are friends of the family. Hint, hint, Gin.”
“I am a messenger,” Gin complained. “Not a porter.”
“Courier,” corrected lady Akyuu. “Those do carry packets as well as correspondence, no?”
“Yes, packets,” grunted the disgruntled courier. “Handy things, yea big at best. Have you the dimmest how much a sack of salt weighs, though?”
Akyuu’s smile communicated a world of ignorance. “No?”
“About as much as a sandbag of the same size. A sandbag, lady Akyuu.”
“Why, but I saw you carry at least thirty of those when we got flooded this Fall. Come, now. They could not have been that heavy.”
“I was motivated,” noted Gin. He did not add, And you were watching, because every man needed a back-breaking shame in his life. “Anyway. What about those other commissions? From the un-legged fellow?”
Lady Akyuu’s eyes hardened, which is to say they went from lovely garnets to slightly more regal sapphires. The question hung between them with its hand out.
“… Can you do it surreptitiously?” was the demand handed in return.
“Ah, yes, surreptition,” Gin brightened; “I have heard that word!”
Akyuu’s precious eyes were rolled precariously in their sockets. “Can you do it on the quiet?” she rephrased. “Stealthily? Without noising it about in front of your friends when you go dip your noses in cheap ale?”
Gin was by no measure a sailor soul, but he knew how to throw a snub that was sure to land. “We both know,” he might say, “how tight I can keep my lips, young mistress.”
And that would have caused lady Akyuu to blush a pretty pink, and he would have laughed about it right merrily, but words were fickle things, inclined to swing around and gain an extra S at the front, especially when wielded by young, irritable noblewomen.
“Oh, well,” he said instead, in the unprotesting voice of someone held at metaphorical sword-point, “I could give stealth a try.”
“… All right,” said lady Akyuu, at last. Two more invoices were tugged out of the sheaf, both dog-eared and marked with a stroke of orange ink. “These should be safe enough, even if I am loath to risk another runner getting trounced by fairies.”
Gin blinked. “Trounced by—?”
“A figure of speech,” Akyuu cut him off. “At any rate, these two. This,” she said, wagging one sheet, “is an order of herbal remedies for a shop on the outskirts of the Forest of Magic. The details are listed. The other,” she indicated the other, “is a delivery for the Myouren temple. Straightforward, if a longer walk. It is daytime, so most youkai should be keeping off the roads. You have read my books; you can look after yourself.”
Gin’s brain said, “… We do business with youkai?” – which his mouth discreetly conveyed to, “… We do business outside of town?”
“Strictly on the Q.T.,” warned Akyuu. “This is why, Gin, I would rather you threw salt over your shoulder. If you take my meaning.”
“Yes, very topical,” he acknowledged. “But I won’t tempt the wrath of all Hieda if I do give it a blast?”
“Only mine, and only if you slip up. And, if we are to be altogether fair,” she added, her tiny lips quirking into an all-too-familiar smirk, “you have tempted way worse, big boy.”
Surprise overtook Gin’s automated retort. It hadn’t to travel too fast, because Gin’s brain was having a minor heart attack. Or his heart was having a major brain attack – he was too surprised to tell which. Lady Akyuu eyed him with subdued amusement, as if she could see the clever thoughts evacuating one by one through his ears.
“… And lived,” coughed Gin, with a thorough display of life functions, some of which the young mistress could see, and some of which she could not. “I, uh, get the message. As it were.”
Lady Akyuu gave him the rich, innocent smile of someone who had long memorised the Courier’s Handbook to Needling the Young Mistress (which consisted, really, of two, non-interchangeable points: 1. Needle, and 2. Run), and may in fact have penned the original edition herself. It was a book to live by for couriers who’d already had their work lined out for the day, and thus, totally useless for Gin. The tricky bit was to get all your tasks before engaging lady Akyuu in verbal sparring, because in lady Akyuu’s Lady Akyuu’s Guide to Retainers, which was more of a headsman’s daybook than a guide, retainers were always subject to snipping down to size.
Maybe, Gin told himself, it was time to take a job and make himself scarce – before lady Akyuu found her scissors.
( ) Salt aplenty for the friendly printer. ( ) Mystery packet for Myouren temple’s misfit. ( ) Healthy herbs for the hermit witch.
I can't believe you guys. Our one chance at Kosuzu smut and you all blew it. The next chance prolly isn't guuna come around till like...5 years from now after 'Kosuzu route never' becomes a meme and someone finally decides to do it.
“Ah, uh, yes,” decided Gin. “Imagine my soul could always use more… er, soul-age?”
Akyuu gave him a deliberative stare. It deliberated that everything about Gin needed age, least of all his soul. “… The temple job, then?” she guess-worked his unadulterated humour. “That is the middle of all evils, I suppose. Clear shot, and Hijiri should have her herd well hounded this long from a full Moon. Very well. Here, these are the papers.”
“The other guy could run it,” Gin said, a scrap defensively. “I’m no slouch.”
“Yes, well, the other guy is a brick privy on legs and no airier upstairs,” said Akyuu, in the blithe tones of someone knocking a co-worker who had just rounded out of earshot. “As good point him down the road and get clear, because he will sooner bowl you over than think to side-track. You, on the other hand, have a fondness for words; words, meanwhile, are what puts you athwart dispositions. See my concerns, now?”
“I am an airy individual,” the courier supposed.
“And needn’t any more holes in you,” said the young noblewoman, dropping a guillotine on that neck of the conversation. “Also, I like you, and would belike grow dull without our morning squabbles. Among those myriad other things you are handy for. So, do be nice and do be careful,” she commanded; “for me, if not yourself. Understood, Gin?”
Strangely enough, wings did not sprout out of Gin’s shoulders to actualise his soaring mood – and then make the rest of his life a major fuss in the doorframe department. Though he did sort of explode and implode at the same time, which feat was inaccessible to men who had not been swiped crabwise the knuckles by lady Akyuu’s usually less merciful yardstick. He reined himself within an ace of grinning like a winning horse. Gods, but this girl can fold you right into an accordion, said the discerning part of his brain, wincing at the ease with which lady Akyuu had done just so. It ill had to remark that the chances of her ever permitting him to forget what they had done were on the far side of remote, because the smirk on her face promised to make it her eternal leverage.
Gin shut his eyes and recalled that sweet figure bucking atop him, aflush with excitement, and scolding him for the crime of wanting to see more of it. Nope. That leverage wasn’t going anywhere.
Something in Gin, perhaps the very part of him that was being levered, trailed his fingers along the outside of lady Akyuu’s palm as he received the invoice being proffered. It was the flimsiest of returns to what amounted to an open flirt, but there it was: her other hand going to her ear to draw a lock of hair behind it. He got a lovely, tight little shiver inside.
It carried him almost to the manor’s depot yard. Then, he willed down his slovenly grin, ahead his tongue was turned completely into a meat popsicle for hungry youkai.
The Hieda clan’s courier service had long taken to hiring men for whom “waking hours” were a philosophical suggestion never given the attention due, and who were preoccupied rather with the question of, “Who prepares the baker’s breakfast?” What therefore met his eyes, despite the pale hour, was a tableau in various shades of industry; everyday deliveries were already leaving house on tireless shoulders, while individual orders (of which Gin’s included) were piled up on the “outgoing” platform after having been collected and readdressed the previous day.
Gin exchanged with the yardman what would, back out front, have been reckoned for a rude gesture, but what was closer or farther the employees’ ratified procedure for clocking in. The yardman took the invoice, saluted, and waddled off to retrieve the packet. Gin drummed his fingers on his knuckles. He missed the previous yardman. He’d had the disposition (and hairdo) of a hermit, but there had been times he would rattle out a few words by way of good-bye, which would then knock about the back of your skull for half the afternoon, until you realised it was actually a clever play on words or an esoteric piece of advice. And then, this Spring, he’d picked up his final wages, and up and become esoteric himself – leaving not as much as a name behind. Gin had, as a consequence, drunk a toast to none that night.
A team of two, carrying a ten-yard bamboo ladder, swerved by him, damn near taking his head off in a friendly, sportive of way. Then came the (new and bigger) yardman, and Gin’s smile fell on hard times. A large, hardwood travelling trunk was riding pillion beside the huge man’s head, and already seemed like a case of instant regret. It thumped veritably into the frozen dirt – something clinking, sloshing, and beckoning sweetly from inside. In about that order. Gin, salt on his mind, squirmed into the carry straps on the trunk’s longest face.
“… Whom to?” he asked, buckling both the rigging and himself up.
The helpful reply was, “Myouren’s.”
Gin throttled a groan. “Who do I get to sign, man?”
The yardman volunteered a shrug. “Ain’t said. None too many faces in there; use your mouth, if you must.”
“What do I tell them this is? Oil? Hakurei’s bath water?”
“Ain’t said,” repeated the big man. “Specialty orders; jus’ the number on the paper once it gets to us… Want to open it up for a look-see?” he suggested, in the wink-wink, nudge-nudge tones of a man hinting at licentious pleasures.
Gin shook his head. “Solid pass. I’m not tearing myself out of this now,” he said, smacking the leather spiderweb on his chest. “With hope, they shall be looking out on the road for me. With hope,” he stressed.
“Hope on, then,” the yardman concluded.
Whether that had been a play on words or advice Gin was meant to contemplate along the way had been lost in the purposeful fumes of the man’s departure. The important thing was, Gin told himself minutes later, that his hope does not freeze and fall off. The town’s lofty gates had been thrown wide open by the dawn watch, admitting the courier – and hardly anyone else at the moment – out on the agricultural flatland hemming the town on all frontiers. The fields and orchards of Gin’s home town were dead and deserted, only ferns of frost snaking along the frozen ground, and up the trunks of slumbering apple trees. A stifled, eerie quiet stalked the empty fields and orchards, deeper and duller the more the town’s walls faded into the morning mist. Gin didn’t mind Winter, if she stayed put and didn’t drop on you from an overhanging rooftop, but the creeping, snowless ambience of the highway was doing a number on his ears.
Soon, and Gin’s ears were ringing as well as numb. He sucked in a draft of the wintry air – and broke into a careful, athletic jog.
And under his steaming breath he murmured the song: I went to the woods, Where all the fairies live, I grabbed one by the ankles, And pinned her under me.
Left foot forward, left foot down, I caught a fairy and went to town.
I went up to the mountains, Where people fear to tread, A Kappa found me in the ford, And sucked my turtle head.
Left foot forward, left foot down, A Kappa blowjob almost made me drown.
I went up the hills, Where red-white miko lives, Asked her for an exorcism, And she went down to her knees.
Left foot forward, left foot down, Miko armpits can feel quite divine.
I went out to the lake, Where mermaid lady lives, I fished her out and stuffed my rod, Between her slimy tits.
Left foot forward, left foot down…
And so on. A steady blood-flow was returned before long to all of Gin’s relevant extremities, at which point they carried the pace on without need for Gin’s awful singing in assist. Fields slid by in swirls of ghostly mist, now at a decent rate, as the courier ran on.
It was beyond the middle milestone – a crossroads, where the field hands would, in season, swap their laden and empty wagons around – among the farther orchards, that he saw the first, actual sign of snow this Winter.
… Or, not at all. Gin skidded to a halt, his breathing knocked out of rhythm and out of whack besides. Someone nearby, he quite suddenly realised, must be feeling mighty embarrassed, because what hung from a conspicuous branch on a tree most nearby the road, was not a clump of snow-white snow – but a pair of snow-white panties.
Gin thought to guffaw – then thought better. Common sense told him this was impossible, that panties belonged either on girls or in the laundry; and yet, there they were, plain as the hat on your head, especially if you were miss Kamishirasawa of the town’s history school. They even had a cute, red ribbon sewn to the front. That seemed funny as all hells to his brain right then, somewise.
“OK, haah, no, enough,” he said aloud, to no one except his confused sanity. There was no good in… what was it? Going moony? Yes, quite. He should look around first. Check what he was missing. Assess the circumstance. See why the wardrobe of the world was not how he’d always thought it was. Then go moony – but with a clear heart.
Sadly, just as he’d begun to study the panty puzzle, a nice, big, moony notion extended its paw.
( ) Don’t look the gift panties in the crotch. ( ) Skedaddle.
Gin smacked it out of the air. And he was brighter than to pick it back up once it began to roll and whimper.
Things the like of panties waiting a discerning collector up in a tree were, to use a specialist term, iffy. At best, they were an indication of someone close by getting lucky; at slightly less, an invitation to see something lucky. At worst, however, it could be the initial in a series of events which would, inevitably, find said discerning collector trussed up in rags and egged by fairies. Come to think of it, Gin appositely thought, what was it that lady Akyuu slipped? Something-something, trounced by fairies? Gin fancied he had a decent guessing solution on who the other runner was; and, if he was correct, then this would indeed have been the sort of trap he would leap head-first into. Or, at least, a certain sort of head-first.
A smile floated up to his lips. It was the sort a seasoned collector may give to a shameless forgery.
Gin scoffed the bogus panties down and up, hefted the shipment trunk on his back – and swaggered right past, under the offered treasure. A tinny, needy voice behind him cried, “Na— Wait. Waaait.”, which told him everything he needed to congratulate himself on a decision well made.
Out the corner of his eye, he witnessed a shadow descend the tree: a dark rend in the forest air – a globe of fathomless un-light, where the Sun should have been filtering through the pale, morning mist. Not something so innocuous a fairy. An actual monster. A youkai.
Gin Akamatsu was not the type of man who took to the idea of “fight or flight,” because “flight” was more or less written into his job description, which, as anyone could tell, can swiftly strip anything of its appeal. But the sight of that black orb tearing up the mist caused a bolt of electricity that hot-wired Gin’s hind-brain and whipped his legs into a frenzied scarper.
There were further pleas of, “Come baaack,” and other enticements, but none which would persuade Gin out of his most natural state. He ran, one foot before the other, until his breath burned in his throat, and his ears were choked with the clamour of his heartbeat. Then, and only then, did he dare to slow down.
And indeed did, to a once again quiet road.
The path to Myouren’s, its advocates promised, was easy as an afternoon stroll: an hour one way if said ease was taken, no meanders, and back home for lunch. A man could attend sister Hijiri’s lauded sermons, chat with the locals, take a soak in the newly tamed hot springs, and still be back ahead most honest, hard-working folk were even off their first shift. And men certainly did – in Summer, when noses weren’t as liable to crack and fall off of your face.
Gin shook his throbbing skull. That a youkai was prowling the frozen, dormant farmland was… well, disconcerting firstly, and mostly dumb from there on out. And to hang out that flavour of lure… Whoever did get snared and eaten in these circumstances likely deserved no pity.
It might be a harsh truth, but it was Gensokyo’s own. Also, hindsight – but mostly truth.
Soon, and Myouren temple loomed out of the fog, in all its flipped-bowl-shape glory. Though, in strict, what loomed out was its imposing, stockade fence, while the temple did its looming without a preposition.
A fine tract of woodland sequestered it from the town’s fields and fallows: rather an urbanity from Acharya Hijiri’s chosen than a true delimitation. The Buddhists wished to be a part apart of Gensokyo’s human commune – in accord, yet distinct – like the skewer in a set of dango, except preachier. Gin had never understood the offence some townsmen took at this; it took all manners of acrobatics to eat dango without the soy sauce getting all over your fingers, and a skewer made for a handy aid. Some could do without it, some couldn’t. For the latter, there was Myouren’s.
Whatever this meant for the core concept of dango, it meant for Gin that he may cross the woodland boundary at leisure and, what was perhaps more heartening, unmolested. Only under the large, crimson Toori gate, which led immediately onto the temple grounds, did the bold courier meet the first impediment. And it did his head in as hard it had the first time, when he had wrangled himself into lady Akyuu’s entourage on her last social call to the temple’s vaunted Acharya.
There, smack dab in the middle of the approach, a tiny, broom-armed figure barred the way onward. Scant taller than Gin’s elbows, a pair of floppy, beastlike ears atop its head, and a pinkish dress that had seen better dye, the youkai guardian of the Myouren temple rounded on the courier, mitten-clad hands gripping its mighty weapon of choice. There was a nervous expectation in its lake-green gaze, and a terrible hunger.
Gin sighed. And then, having filled up on lost air, he hollered: “… Good morning!”
The warden youkai nearly sparkled. Gin barely slapped his palms over his ears before it framed its mouth in the oversized mittens, and—
—and nigh-on made hearing but an echo of the past.
Gin Akamatsu eked out a wry smile while the ground beneath him quaked out its last. This was the trouble with youkai; you could never take them at face value. There were plenty who wanted nothing less than their teeth around your carotid artery; yet, for every three, there came forth the one outlier who satisfied with a simple “Good morning!” or a trunk of… whatever, duly delivered to their doorstep. Those youkai were, as a rule, very civil – up until the point where they suddenly weren’t.
Well, Gin cheered himself, she isn’t nibbling on your neck, is she? He had a flash of stray regret as he pushed toward the warden youkai, with her big ears, big smile, and contrasting smallness. There was a faint impression of a wagging tail, which went no further than imagination, once the wary courier arrived within petting range.
The little broom-wielding youkai beamed up at him. “Hello! Good morning!”
“I,” tried Gin, “have a parcel here, for, uh… Myouren’s?”
“Myouren’s!” was the involuntary reply. Then, something sparked. “Ah! Um… I am so very sorry, but Myouren is… Ah, ah, well, it pains our big sister Hijiri, but he is—”
“—late, yes. I know. I meant the temple.”
“Temple,” echoed the tiny gatekeeper. “… Temple has a parcel?”
Gin Akamatsu performed that downshift of abstraction every courier learns in response to ground-level contact with the recipients. “… Somebody in the temple,” he explained, long-suffering, “has placed an order with the Hieda. I am it. That is, I have it. Here, on my back.”
“On my back. Um… I do not know about an order. Sorry.”
“Another guy runs this line every other day; I’m only standing in for him. Tall bugger, trunk on his back… like mine? Maybe you know him. Who does he go to, usually?”
“Usually? Usually…” The youkai’s little face was a condensed diorama of all the artlessness in the world. “Ah, I am sorry; I do not recall a trunk, or a bugger…”
If you make her cry, Gin’s conscience butted in, you and I are going to have words. “… All right,” said the courier… who was still inside petting range, and still very conscious of it. “Any idea who might have put in an order with us, then? Someone who would want, er… stuff, from our town?”
“Our town, our town,” mused the tiny warden, in the tones of someone in chin-deep focus. “… Mm, maybe captain ‘Mitsu, or sister Ichirin. Master Shou was chewed out for mooching offerings from devotees no earlier than last Moon, so probably not her. Naz, maybe… but she isn’t here; she’s wintering. Miss Mami could have gone and gotten it herself; and Nue, I haven’t seen in a while – even if I feel her around. Who else, who else…”
“And your lady Acharya?”
The gatekeeper smiled apologetically. “… I do not know. Um, I mean—” she caught herself; “lady Acharya? I do not know. Mm-hmm. There.”
Gin watched the diminutive youkai in consternation. She wasn’t exactly childlike, being bustier and hippier than could have been masked by the dress, and rather on the charming side; yet the shaggy, tawny ear-flaps kept his own inner child in mind of scratching the heck out of them. He’d never had a pet; a pet name had been as near as it’d come. Today, however, was not one for discovering his beast-master heritage; thus, Gin held his hands flat against his sides, well away from mischief.
“… Never mind,” he advanced, for the poor youkai’s self-esteem. “It isn’t your fault. Someone ought to have told you.”
Of course, that someone ought to have was not, by itself, a history changer. There wasn’t the chaser, “and, actually, I just remembered, someone did,” no matter how long Gin stood there, reining in his instincts; but someone ought to have told the adorable gatekeeper something, and right now the whole available range of someones consisted of Gin and her.
And echoes did not make themselves.
( ) Always wanted a sister. And this Ichirin already had the title! ( ) A captain! Sailors should know a thing or two about shipments, yes? ( ) When in doubt, rat it out. Straight to aunt Hijiri and hope for a hug!
(X) Always wanted a sister. And this Ichirin already had the title!
“Well… I’m a tad left-handed with authority,” said Gin, sneaking in a great deal of surreptitiousness to his tone, since echoes were classically very bad at it. “Second-in-authority, though… That is what she was, yeah? More my stick of dango, right there.”
“Of dango,” agreed the tiny youkai, “right there. Um. You want sister Ichirin, then?”
“A sister is one of my longest dreams. Where do I brother— er, bother this Ichirin?”
“This Ichirin. Yes, um. Sister Ichirin has taken her morning practice behind the rest-house, which is this here—” she tipped her broom at the elongate structure huddled under the temple’s western wall. “Too many eyes out front got, um… engrossed. That is, that was what big sister Hijiri said. Sister Ichirin can really move – when she incurs good rhythm. It is something to see; I like watching it, too.” The tiny warden youkai broadcast admiration.
Gin beat down the rising smidgens of jealousy. “… Are you, er,” he asked, words tumbling out over the piled smidgen bodies. “Are you here often? As in, blast it, when I leave – will you be? In, what – fifteen or abouts?”
“Or abouts. I mind the gate,” affirmed the dutiful little youkai, “so, I am here always… except sometimes.”
“And in fifteen?” Gin wanted to know.
“In fifteen. I should be here, yes.”
The courier’s relief fogged in the frigid air. “Good,” he wheezed. “Wonderful… In that then case, I should confirm something with someone, and, er… See you on the way out? Yeah?”
“Yeah? Mm-hmm—” the tiny gatekeeper gave a serious little nod, “—okay. Until then, brother… um?”
“GinAkamatsuwiththeHieda,” Gin reeled off, the years of usance providing the needed sound – if not the discreet words.
The flap-eared youkai’s head was tipped askance. “GinAkamamatsuwith…”
Gin mentally sledged himself. “… Gin,” he groaned. “Just Gin.”
“Just Gin. So… brother Just Gin?”
“No just. Just Gin.”
Out the corner of his attention, appropriated hitherto by the cutesy warden, he could now discern the hints of daybreak at full career: the bustle before the temple’s sanctum, where disciples and neophytes were assembling for morning sermons; black-robed supplicants scurrying about; the bodeful murmur of enlightenment, poised to befall anyone too tardy to escape. Gin scrunched his worldliness into a protective ball. He roughed out a salute, and whisked past the gatekeeper youkai, a man with a mission worn on his sleeves. Or back, as it were, in Gin’s case.
The Myouren temple rest-house, at which the courier had been pointed, had a neat, understated frontage. It was a building designed by a soul steeped in the practical, with only a token pinch of religious pomp. That pomp now lay dead in vacant flowerbeds; and the wide, sliding doors were shut with such a sheer shutness, it seemed to defy anyone to make good on their purpose. A mushroom cloud of milky steam brooded over the slanted roof – natural advertisement of the hot springs touted in rumours. Gin marched the courier march unto the far end of the front-spanning veranda, whereupon he turned its tucked-away corner…
… Only to stand as still as a pillar of salt that couldn’t move because it was a pillar of salt.
There, on a stretch of yard cloistered off between the rest-house and the outer fence, a woman was locked in a death flamenco with an invisible musketeer. Gin’s command of his jaw loosened at the sight of a white karateka’s kimono top over bare skin; it dropped like an anvil when the woman casually cartwheeled forward from an upright stance. A sky-blue ponytail whipped in her wake, slicing at the frigid air, almost in synchrony with the gold-chased chakrams gripped in both the dancer’s hands.
There was a hitch of awkwardness in the lethal dance as the woman’s eyes fell on the gawping Gin. And then, another cartwheel, terminating in a fencer’s pose.
Gin crashed his jaw shut. A gap had opened down the front of the woman’s kimono, neatly dividing her ample bust into an area that still left something to the imagination, and one that didn’t. A shadow of something darker peeked out from underneath the separating line on one side.
Someone said, “May I assist you?” and Gin peeked up alertly at the woman’s serious, unbothered face. A faint smile had worked its way to the edges of her mouth. It was the sort of smile that had perched on a street corner with a religious pamphlet all day, and you just made inadvertent eye contact. Of course, a Buddhist would not overmuch mind showing off a huge swathe of her assets; Buddhists almost didn’t mind things as a rule. Gin did, therefore, do his best not to focus on the large, half-exposed breasts either. He focused, instead, on the creamy, sweat-doused valley between them. That, right there, had to do.
“… Gin Akamatsu,” he said, after exhausting the lower reaches of decency. “With the Hieda. I have a parcel here for… well, someone in the temple. Might you be sister Ichirin?”
The woman’s cerulean eyes widened with something halfway from suspicion to surprise. “A courier? Yes, yes, I’m—” There was a skip and a relaxing of battle-ready muscles, and the armed dancer tugged the halves of her kimono farther up her shoulders. This had the rather inopportune side-effect of squishing her breasts together for an even more inviting cleavage. “… I am Kumoi Ichirin,” she acknowledged. “Acharya Hijiri’s second; Myouren temple’s guardian. You must excuse my appearance; I am not, technically, in my robes yet. If you will. How may I assist you with this… parcel?”
You bloody tell me, thought Gin. “Thing is,” he said, “it’s been addressed to the temple; no names, no notes. Our usual carrier got on the nasty end of a fairy, and I’m not terribly well acquainted with Myouren’s.”
“What is inside the parcel? That should make for a decent hint.”
Gin gave a shrug. “No dimmest,” he confessed. “It sloshes, is all I know. I don’t pack these, sister. Just a runner.”
Sister Ichirin seemed to consider it. At least, the cant of her ponytailed head seemed to imply so. “… And,” she asked, drawling the words, “I was the first face you ran across?”
“No,” replied Gin, which was true. “Your gate minder steered me here,” he added, which was not un-true. “Wasn’t the longest shot, I reckoned.”
“And you have inquired of this,” pressed Ichirin, “to no one else?”
“Not sister Byakuren? Not… anyone with a cap?”
“No one, no one?”
Gin made a frown. “… No. Why—”
A pair of gleaming, polished, metal hoops sailed through the intervening air.
Gin’s hands snatched them up, more a boyhood reflex than a conscious decision. Golden all the way around, they were heavy things; not quite weapons, for want of bladed edges – though Gin had all the same the eeriest impression they somehow warped whichever patch of air was unlucky enough to happen inside the ring. There was an old, teacherly-sounding phrase Akyuu had used to describe youkai artefacts in one of her books. An item of such lineage, according to her, “knew not not to play hooky with the fundamental laws of the world.” Gin held the chakram’s very still, keenly disregarding that the chill, winter breeze wafting through them (against his best efforts) came out slightly warmer on the other side.
Gin came out slightly warmer himself when sister Ichirin raised her offloaded arms to loosen her ponytail. The stiff halves of her kimono split further down the middle, until the plump undersides of her breasts were made a part of the mountainous landscape. At a light pinch, Ichirin’s hair spilled down the sides of her face in messy, slightly curling locks. Gin tried hard not to think about waking up to this sight every morning; he thought of waking up to it one morning, after a full-night work-out.
The thoughts of physicality fizzed out once the shapely temple guardian snapped her fingers, and the chakrams reappeared in her hands with complete disregard for the now-toss-them-back-to-me-good-job part of catch.
“Come inside, will you please?” she asked. “Could be ears anywhere in the open.”
Gin struggled with a seething snake nest of innuendo. “Uh,” he grunted his pronounced effort. “… All right, fine. Yeah.”
“Good. After me, then. Oh, and—” she remembered, spinning on a sandal’s heel. “Myouren temple does graciously extend its greetings to the envoy of the Hieda.”
There was a deep bow, which left Gin Akamatsu in mind of dipping net-wrapped watermelons into a cool river. He bowed back, rather with prudence than ceremony. One more blessing on the clothiers of Gensokyo.
“And I, uh, do greet Myouren in return?” he supposed.
“It’ll do,” granted Ichirin. “OK, now, let us really go get inside. ‘Mitsu will crawl out of the bath any minute; I’d like this done and over with before she does. Come, follow me.”
And then, all soul of secrecy, she padded for the short flight of stairs climbing to a door on the lonely flank of the building. Gin clambered after, wincing at the un-cloak-and-dagger noise his laden feet elicited from the wooden treads.
A handful of shrouded candles illuminated the rest-house’s hallway, which was to say they lent an orange hue to the mahogany floor and walls around them. Sister Ichirin led Gin down along a row of identical doors, the tap-tap-tap of her sandals almost clamouring in the silence. All of a sudden, she swerved into one, which her better-acquainted eyes must have singled out somehow. That, or – like her hoops – the doors were bloody magic.
Gin felt, if anything, only a touch less cold once he trailed after Ichirin into the room, and the door clicked closed behind him. As the name of the building should have implied, the room was… well, it wasn’t a restroom, which would have spoken to sense on some level, yet had been meant, clearly, for rest: a knee-high breakfast table in one corner, and a roll of fresh futons opposite. There weren’t candles here; though, a few rays of morning light were knifing through the paper-screen walls. It was, all in all, pretty restful.
Motivated by sister Ichirin’s prodding glances, Gin finagled himself out of the trunk’s rigging, and laid it on the floor. Then, he stomped on to collapse tiredly on the table. Then and there, he felt a damn silly fool; there were things, told in stories, of men who pursued attractive women into secluded places, and none of them with especial respect. Their remaining lifespans usually followed. Gin’s mind groped for differences between those stories and his own, which it thought could save its owner’s honour. It found one in Ichirin – here, the “attractive woman” – having evidently more interest in the package than in Gin – the “disrespectful term” – and his tasty flesh.
Another was that she hadn’t sprouted a wealth of warts, tentacles and fangs the moment they were alone – and remained a tongue-drying sight as she knelt to undo the buckles keeping the delivery contained.
When the lid popped, Ichirin hefted it up, causing Gin to lean forward with curiosity… and not in the least because the kimono was being very unruly. Inside the old trunk, each in its own, straw-packed compartment, was a venerable hoard of large, varicoloured bottles. Ichirin hung over the trove, mouth agape, the staid confidence unveiling a crack for the first time. Among other things that were being precariously unveiled. In faintly disbelieving wonder, she picked out a chunky, earthenware bottle – cracked the wax seal – plucked the stopper – and sniffed at its unknown contents before Gin conceived of a single protest.
And then, not satisfied with smell alone, she took a long, adventurous swig.
“… Yuzushu,” was her instant review. “It’s gods-damned, bloody yuzushu…”
Gin looked on as she marvelled quietly at the bottle. “… Were Buddhists allowed to drink?” he questioned aloud. Or swear? he tacked on in his head, while at it.
That soured Ichirin’s overall score. Her eyes quit glittering. “… Well, no,” she surrendered; “by dint of generality, we are not. States the fifth precept,” she intoned, “renounce thou all seditious substances. As all Buddhas refrained, until the end of their lives, so shall we refrain, until ours end also.”
“Sounds cut-and-dry to me, sister,” opined Gin.
Ichirin’s teeth caught her bottom lip for an unguarded moment. “It would be, yes – I agree,” she argued. “I, however, am youkai. I can renounce any substance at a will. If need be, I can sober up in a heartbeat. What use is to refrain then?”
“What use is to get drunk?” asked Gin, in the quasi-philosophical tones of someone who asks themselves the same every Sunday, round about midnight.
Sister Ichirin must have recognised the kindred vibes, since she laughed ahead admitting, “I feel better about myself after a bottle or two. It isn’t more complex than that. I do not intend insult to sister Byakuren’s teachings; I do not treat my station lightly. Alcohol is but a key to be more… myself. And that is what I want to be, when I am on my own time. Not sister Ichirin; not the Great Wheel, Guarding and Guarded. Ichirin. Me. You get?”
Gin detected just a dash of a mite of desperation from the dishevelled woman on the floor. Maybe, he conceded, the hearsay had itself heard wrongly of the valiant guardian of the Myouren temple. Sister Ichirin had indeed featured scarcely in whispers on youkai Buddhists, for the volume of whispering they engendered; now, he saw, it hadn’t been for lack of vices. Maybe the gods had said to her, “Sorry, lass, we are giving you faults and wants like everyone, but here, take this overweening sense of responsibility to cover them up.” Maybe that was why she had damned them just then.
Gin Akamatsu sighed his sympathy at her as he climbed back to his feet. “I get,” he promised. “I’ll be collecting my fee, and leave you to be yourself, then.”
A minute tightening of Ichirin’s beautiful eyes told the courier, in no uncertain addresses this time, that he had said something off. “Your… fee?”
Oh no, thought Gin, staring down the beautiful, scantily-dressed woman with a bottle dumbly stuck in her hand. “Uh. Yeah?” he said. “Items are pre-paid, but there is a fee levied upon delivery, along with potential differences in market price. It was in the invoice you signed when you placed the order. There ought to be a chit in there somewhere with a tally; you can dig it up, and we can check if there were… any… Yeah, right,” he sighed. “Wasn’t you, was it? OK, sister; you had a sample. I’ll be taking that back, now, thank you, and then to someone who—”
“Sit down, courier.”
The command had an exasperated, Akyuu-like harmonic to it, which folded Gin’s legs underneath him. He flopped back on the table, while Ichirin drained the bottle in one, prolonged swig. Then, obstinacy worn plain as lipstick on her mouth, she stood and rounded at the assiduous courier who would charge her so.
“I’ll level with you,” she said – before, indeed, joining him on the placeholder sofa.
A butterfly hatched inside Gin’s stomach. As if warmed by the bodily proximity, the ice-encased cavemen in his head were all at once thawed, and grabbed at their discarded clubs. They thumped their feet at Ichirin’s comely face, and flared their nostrils at the rich, pheromone-thick scent of her perspiration. And then, they began to whoop in joy once Gin realised that, from this new angle, the entire slope of Ichirin’s left breast was on display inside the kimono’s loose front: from the sharp collarbone, to the plump, carmine peak that was the nipple. It was round, pale, ostensibly unbothered by gravity, and promised to more than tax Gin’s hand, if he should ever dare to slide it inside the gap and give it a nice squeeze. It could well have been the largest, softest-looking breast Gin would ever squeeze.
It had been two weeks since he’d had sex with lady Akyuu; two weeks, which he had spent in willing celibacy, on the thin hope that his secret love would request they relieve each other again. It’d been a dry, empty fortnight, which now slammed into his gut with fourteen days of delayed libido. And the curvy sister Ichirin was receiving the brunt of its focus.
“—s your name? Gin?”
Gin tore his gaze from the art-piece of her nude breast, and looked up blearily at Ichirin’s face. The same, pamphlet-waving smile was once more at home, except framed now in curls of sky-blue hair which seemed straight out of a bed where many, many sweaty things had taken place the previous night. “… Gin,” he confirmed, a reflex not lost in the exodus of blood from his brain. “Gin Akamatsu. With the Hieda.”
Ichirin happily cleared her right cheek of that dreamy bed-hair. “Well, Gin Akamatsu with the Hieda,” she obliged. “The straightest of it is this: that this parcel is likely for my best friend. A certain ‘Mitsu, whom I may have mentioned.”
Gin gave a nod. And not because down was where the breast was. No, sir. “You did,” he admitted.
“Yes. A while ago, ‘Mitsu made… shall we say, friends? With a man from your town. Soulmates at first sight, to hear her tell it; I imagine, given what she did tell me, this crate of booty is from him, to her. Stands to scrutiny, anyway – in my eye.”
Gin squared his eyebrows. “You… imagine?”
“There is more,” assured Ichirin. “I was traded a bond of yuzushu for my hush in all this, see? And that, right there… Well, I’ll be a Taoist whore if that wasn’t it. Checks out, yes?”
“Yes, demonstrably no eboshi on your head,” quipped Gin, not positive himself where he’d stored the wit. “OK, so, uh… you want to hold on to this, and participate in the surprise. Jolly. There’s still my fee to take out of the equation.”
Sister Ichirin wasn’t about to let his stubbornness overwhelm her own. “… All right,” she said. “This is the salacious bit, then.”
And then, swivelling her hips, she pulled one leg up onto the table. The cavemen in Gin’s head booed at once when the change in facing shielded the sister’s soft endowment from their sight. They found quite something else to gawk at when the leg turned out to be utterly bare from mid-thigh down to the littlest toes.
“So, here,” the buxom Buddhist was saying, “when that man first met ‘Mitsu, here in the temple, he had with him, reportedly, some sort of very expensive sweets. We, in Myouren’s, however, by our calling, rarely deal in hard currency. Oh, sister Byakuren keeps gold chips and such, for emergencies; on the whole, though, we feed our neophytes from offerings, not through commerce. So, can you wager a guess—”
Gin’s heart rammed at his ribs when Ichirin tipped forward and slapped her hands on the tabletop just beside him.
“Can you wager a gods-damned guess,” she dared him, in the sarcastic register of someone who knew, but wanted somebody else to embarrass themselves with the answer, “what it was that she gave him in return for those priceless sweets? Can you?”
Gin inflated his chest, ready to take the figurative plunge and wager it had been—
( ) A handy in the back pews. ( ) A really long and really friendly kiss. ( ) All he was owed and not a yen less.
—something not routinely enjoyed by men who went around dispensing sweets. Or, Gin’s moral nous begged it not to be.
And now, with his mouth tasting of warmed-over air radiated off Ichirin’s abyssal cleavage, he thought he had ennobled himself to a girl with alcohol before. Only then, his thanks hadn’t extended farther than passionate conversation and a chase kiss on the cheek. What the foxy youkai priestess was angling for with the subtlety of a protractor guaranteed not to end there. Where it was more apt to, was in one of the tight, treacherous crevices immanent to the sort of hilly environs she was showboating. The cleavage being one; even now, Ichirin’s copious bust was dangling below her, straining the front of her kimono something amazing. A bead of sweat was trickling down one of smooth, round slopes, to vanish down a silky ravine Gin had a suspicion he could fit inside with precious room to spare. What harm would it do to see how deep it went?
That, needless to say, was a question with a higher historical lethality rate than, “Where the heck did my rake go?” or “How spicy could it be?”
Gin tasted steel. It was his own; his moral nous was sharpening its shank, and chips were flying everywhere. It was giving him a look.
“… Were,” Gin obliged, “that this man of your friend’s was anything like me, sister, then she’d probably have paid all he was owed… and not a yen less.”
There was a fraught, awkward pause that followed the words, which the courier punctuated with a fixed, polite smile, while the busty priestess tried to somehow sort them out to her satisfaction. When she found she couldn’t, she cracked them over a scowl.
“… No,” she said tartly. “No, no, no—”
“Yes,” said Gin, seeing her tart and raising her a lemon. “Sorry, sister. The Hieda don’t feed me; I need to commit this fee if I want my slice at the end of the month. You get?”
Ichirin chewed the reply. It was an impressive sight; and the first impression it gave Gin was that he was fortunate not to be in its place. Then, she grimaced like a woman scorned. Or, anyway, like one who had bit a lemon.
“… Is it because I am youkai?” she demanded.
Gin’s lips went dry at a returning memory of alcohol. “… No,” he squeezed out. “No, I’ve… er, had confabs at a table with amiable youkai before.”
Ichirin gave his witticism a hard pass. “What, then?” she pressed. “Am I ugly? Too thick? Too mannish?”
Ma’am, should you be a man, then you would be the sexiest I’ve ever done seen, muttered a lesser part of Gin’s psyche. The greater one sieved for an excuse. “… I,” he confessed at length, “I have… a girl. That I like. As in, really like. That’s it.”
A girl who is so far above your means, supplied Gin’s ignored lesser part, as good you might save up for a gold-encrusted ladder. A girl who has told you, in no veiled terms, to pick up a different lover. The courier told it to go blow itself – on account that no one else was about to.
Sister Ichirin, who had heard nothing but Gin’s outward purity, slowly drew away. Her body heat went with her, only truly palpable once it was gone. Gin shivered from neck to stomach, and not at all for lack of warm clothing. The nice sweat he’d worked up in the jog to the temple could not hold a towel to the intense, ritual exercise Ichirin had, earmarks were, been at all morning. In warmer indoors, the bare sweeps of her light skin had grown pink and glossy; they looked to the courier as if they would stick and cling lovingly to whatever indiscriminate hands were to rub against them. Or, for that matter, to any other unbridled body part. The sultry scent of her body dallied in her wake. It smelled faintly of wounded pride.
And then, sister Ichirin gave a surrendering sigh, and stood from the maltreated table.
None too soon, either, for the cavemen of Gin’s head almost chose that same moment to grab his conscience and club it sideways the nape. Ichirin piquantly neatening her clothes arrested their attention long enough for it to scurry away to safety.
“You, sir courier,” said the priestess, arms propped on her motherly hips, “are a dog in the manger. And here I’d fancied I could get one up on ‘Mitsu…”
“What, by hitching the goods from under her nose?” asked Gin, ever the connoisseur of friendly sabotage between playmates.
“Hmph.” Sister Ichirin’s mouth drew into a sour arch. “No. That’d have been the murder stroke. So to speak. This—” she eloquently spread her hands, “—was to be the prime blow. That I could do better than she. You get?”
“Meaning,” ventured the courier, “do a better man, or do a man better?”
Apart from the condescension in her inhuman eyes, Gin could have imagined she’d been surprised. “None of your danged now, lover-boy,” she put him down. “Agonise on it on your own, if you must. Or don’t. I don’t give a particular. Tell me, rather. How do I cover for this bloody fee of yours?”
He eyed her from under a frown. “You want to hitch it after all?”
“Look here, you,” warned Ichirin. “I’ve flushed that yuzushu down my bloody throat already, and now it’s all going to go to waste. So, don’t push it. Talk. How do I pay you? Gold all right? I haven’t really anything else I’d will to barter.”
Gin ran this by his internal accounting. “Uh. Sure. Should be able to exchange it for coin somewhere…”
This was an area less accounted for. “… Well, the fee is six hundred per, on large deliveries, so…” He hesitated. “… Six grams?”
Ichirin, appearing to find no issue, made a nod. “That’ll do.”
And then, she took her legs, hips, the storm of sky-blue curls, and everything in between – and tramped out of the room.
Once she faded from its air as well, Gin Akamatsu reclined atop the table he, along with sister Ichirin, had come oh-so-close to grossly misusing. He felt a shade like a man who’d almost not crossed a river on stepping-stones. He’d made it in the end, but the final stone had been a tad beyond his spread, so it hadn’t been without some inguinal stress. When he considered it rationally (insofar as rationale could apply to anything within a minute’s space from a body like sister Ichirin’s), he had done his courier’s integrity quite the solid. He’d turned down a sweaty, skin-on-skin session with a busty, assertive woman – only in order to secure his modest job.
On the flipside, he’d turned down a sweaty, skin-on-skin session with a busty, assertive woman, only in order to secure his modest job.
Someone was hooting and stomping in his head that he might like to conduct his future behaviour with an eye to this.
When, in proverbial no-time, Ichirin returned to the room, it was inside a now-primly lashed kimono with a satin kerchief tucked under one half. And, once that was unfolded (the kerchief, not the kimono), it was Gin’s jaw which followed suit. There, on the youkai woman’s outstretched palm, lay half a dozen scales of bright, beer-yellow gold. Wafer-thin, spiderweb shapes, reminiscent of the ribs on oak-leaves, they had every appearance of having been somehow removed from the surrounding rock while retaining the original flow of the gold seam. They were each a tiny artefact of nature, a self-contained treasure, none like Gin had ever seen.
And six of them were presented in total.
Ichirin dumped them in his hands unceremoniously. “No earthly idea how many ‘gram’ these are,” she confided. “What I do know is, the number checks out. Yeah?”
Gin carefully folded the scales back up in the kerchief. Then stashed the bundle in a pocket. “Yeah.” Maybe? “I’m, er, under an oath to return the trunk, too. So, if you’ll ‘scuse…”
It was he was uprooting the bottles from their compartments that Ichirin spoke over his shoulder. “Courier?”
“Gin, Hieda, et caetera,” murmured Gin. “What is it?”
“You mentioned,” Ichirin ducked the repartee, “that you weren’t the regular lineman for Myouren’s? That someone else, what was it, runs it most other days?”
“Oh. Yeah. A bighead with a big man strapped underneath. Ought to be back on soon… ish. And then, there are other messengers doing his courses in the meanwhile. Why?”
“And what,” Ichirin drove on, “is the cheapest… item you do deliver?”
“Anything? Closer or farther,” supposed Gin. “You lodge an order with a clerk; they do you a pricing; you pay the advance and go home. We’re on it in a day or two… unless you want a specific pair of Hakurei’s panties or something.”
“How professional. And I should only do so with money?”
“Clerks do like their shiny bits numbered. Sentimental value frightens them.”
The last bottle stood on the straw-mat floor, and Gin re-lidded the trunk. He creaked up to his feet, hefting the now-much-lightened baggage onto his back. Sister Ichirin watched him wiggle into the straps, somewhat like a hound with a bone that had lost the musty, rotted aroma a week ago, and just wasn’t fun to lick anymore.
“… Ah, before I run,” the courier recalled, a foot already halfway into the process. “About that excitable little gate minder of yours…”
Ichirin’s brows skewed at the question. “Kyouko? What about her?”
“Well,” coughed Gin, “I am nothing if not a gentleman, so I reckoned I should ask this ahead…”
A minute hence, he was once more out in the cold under the Toori gate: scratching behind the warden’s woolly ear-flaps and basking in the rays of her glowing smile. Kyouko, who had at first eyed his questing hand with puzzled apprehension, was now snuggling the inside of his palm, mumbling in a gleeful little voice. As a result, Gin was being warmed in no small way, both inside and out.
There were times, in a proud, young man’s life, when retrospect caught up and rolled him across the bed in an explosive tantrum. On those rainy days, it helped to have a “Well, at least—!” on the side to cushion the blow, and avert a permanent contusion of the ego. Kyouko’s big, content smile could occupy an entire body pillow.
With his future set right (and alight), Gin bade the adorable little warden a fare well – got it returned with tenfold interest – smacked his temples until his ears quit ringing – and set, at a trot, back toward the Winter-seized town.
He went down to the Hiedas’ depot. He dropped the empty trunk on the unhelpful yardman’s toe, mended workplace relations with a convivial slap on the kidneys, mooched around the yard and got in the way of people laden under heavy things, and last flounced back inside the manor, shedding tails of fake urgency.
Lady Akyuu’s office door appropriately knocked, Gin Akamatsu appropriately “Come on in”-ed, he pulled off his cap and stepped again inside the young mistress’s workplace. Nothing too much had changed since morning; lady Akyuu was still quietly unattainable, and she was still fiddling with the concept of a paper-stack fortress. There were but two conspicuous additions to the place; of these, one was an incense stick – stuck, faithfully to its name, in the stump of a candle – half-charred and smelling sharply of citrus. The other was a girl.
“Gin,” said lady Akyuu, slashing with her fountain pen at the arrived courier. Then, she reversed her hand, and indicated, “Kosuzu. Be nice.”
There was the sound of manners slotting into place, and gazes being turned from the authoritarian hostess. Gin eyed the other guest: all four-and-a-half feet of height wrapped in stuffy plaid. Younger than Akyuu on the outside, the girl must have gotten her sense of fashion in inheritance. A head of carrot-orange hair, done up in a matching pair of bunches, was peeking out above a tartan scarf the width of Gin’s self-esteem. Over all, she wore a buffed, canvas apron, bedecked in what could only be tribal markings, or accidental splashes of ink from too sweeping a writing style.
Seniority trumped gender, however briefly, and the girl offered up the unsteady bow of a tipping turnip.
“Motoori Kosuzu,” she volunteered. “Of, um, Suzunaan and the printing press. And you—”
“Gin Akamatsu,” returned Gin, dipping his upper half like a dunking bird. “With the Hieda.”
A girly chuckle presaged the reply. “Yes, I figured, what with you being here. And you are, I meant to say, miss Akyuu’s favourite—”
“One of the favourite errand boys,” Akyuu intervened.
The young mistress was married too close to scraping yet another line down a row of figures to notice the smile that passed along Kosuzu’s colourless lips as she unrolled from her bow. Gin did, and in it read a novel’s worth of words which he hadn’t likely been meant to know about. A soft jingle stole the rousing curiosity, and the courier realised some very worried soul had attached a pair of sleigh bells to each of Kosuzu’s pigtails.
“Yeees,” she drawled. “One of the favourites, all very fine. At any rate, this is fortunate; you are aware what it is that I do?”
The question had been aimed Gin’s way, and rather with an Akyuu-like inflection. He responded almost on instinct. “You’ve, er, printed books for the young mistress. No?”
“Only a trifling few, a guide here, a monograph there,” said Kosuzu, with affected modesty. “Nothing the volume of, say, Agatha Chris Q’s issue. Hmm? Not what I meant, not what I meant. Anyhow, I also do… readings, let us say.”
“Readings,” said Gin, his smile by now a bit glassy.
“Yes. I read things. With the emphasis on ‘things;’ books aren’t a pile of challenge, provided you’re familiar with the language. Well… as long as you are. Which brings me to…” There was a dramatic pause. “… Ah, nothing so grandiose, really,” Kosuzu gave up, seeing the geological activity on Gin’s forehead. “Miss Akyuu here has let it slip that you were… spirited away to Gensokyo at a younger age, being originally from the Outside World. The Hieda clan took you in, and you have been in their employ ever since. Hmm?”
“And I’d thought I’d tried assimilating…” sighed Gin, leering at his not-so-tight-lipped lady. Akyuu ignored it.
Kosuzu chimed, summoning his attention back to herself. “Small matter here,” she said; “big matter to me. There’re books and papers from the Outside World at my father’s shop that people want read, but I can’t fain well understand. They’re in Japanese, see, so my special talent is no use; there are still words in there, though, that I can’t make ups or downs of. It’s altogether vexing.”
And losing you filthy lucre, Gin speculated inside. “… What’s in it for me?”
“Oh? Oh! A man of transaction, just as miss Akyuu has told it!” marvelled the printer’s daughter. “Well, here’s the long and short. I presume you’re versed in modern Japanese. Come by, then, if you find time; read those words at me until I’ve learned them. None simpler. I’ll pay you per troublesome page. It’ll be pocket money – but easy. Hmm? Well?”
Good heavens! Gin squirmed. It’s little Akyuu all over again.
“I’ll…” He peeked sidelong at his lady. Akyuu gave him the clerk’s reply, which was to say she made no eye contact and appeared very busy with her pen. “… I’ll take a typhoon check,” he decided.
“It’s a date,” beamed Kosuzu.
“… Yes, well, anyhow you chop that,” Gin replied; “if you’ll pardon, I’ll take my next course and leave you two to… whatever it was before I barged in. OK?”
Kosuzu’s eyes startled wide. “Oh! No, no. Never mind me! I’ve spoken my piece. We have a deadline, miss Akyuu?”
Akyuu made a sound that should have been more intimate to Gin than her. “… Yes, yes,” she muttered. “I shall have it down by the first; do not you lose out on your beauty sleep. All fine? Scoot, Kosuzu.”
“Scoot I will,” agreed Kosuzu. “I’ve a whole font table at home to scrub clean. Shiver. Good day, miss Akyuu. See you around, mister Gin.”
She’d said it. It wasn’t ahead Kosuzu had long shut the door behind herself, but there it dawned. She’d said “shiver” – and didn’t actually do it.
Gin faced the young mistress at her document-entrenched desk.
“That girl talks,” he complained, in the naïve manner of misunderstood geniuses.
The noble daughter of the Hieda crossed out a final figure in her ledger, sighed, dusted her hands, and stood up. All of this constituted a single, neat sequence, which culminated in the young woman dropping her ministerial façade. And when lady Akyuu dropped her façade before midnight, you knew drat well her patience was not far behind. Gin keenly scanned his mental processes ahead for insipid jokes to eject. He winced at the clatter they made.
Meanwhile, having thrown down her expensive pen, Akyuu rummaged beside her desk for the courier’s expectations. She found them in the uniform sheaf of unassigned lists – proving, perchance, that favourites weren’t something to play in lady Akyuu’s office – only to have. Gin approached to receive them with an expression of genuinely false compliance. Akyuu saw right through it.
“These,” she said, implacable as a weathervane on a windy night, “I need you to deliver to these addresses. Tell them somebody should be along in two hours to pick everything up. And that I shall kill someone if they forget to rebate us again. As for this—” she flapped a blue-marked chit in his face, “… Are you perhaps acquainted with the family who own the textile mill? On the big estate south-wise of the market?”
“Uh. Think I am,” Gin told the inside of the chit. “Those what raised hell over a spider youkai from under Moriya some ten-odd years ago? That it did in their clans-head or something?”
“I would have been too young to be told about it,” observed Akyuu, “but, I suppose yes. The crux is, they hired on a clothier this Winter – something they hadn’t done before, if you’ll believe. The woman’s proven something of an artisan; now, they cannot keep up with commissions. They haven’t the manpower to spare for running all over town with the ready pieces – thus, they’ve contracted ours. It’s simple, easy work, and she’ll only take you the rest of the afternoon. Your type, Gin.”
The jab could not have been more pronounced if Akyuu had put it in a spelling bee. Gin peeled the clothier’s plea from the front of his skull to see the young mistress swish her evidently stiff hips back to the writing table. A weary pause preceded her slumping down onto the piled-up cushions. Around her, a few sheets of paper sailed away on the opportune puff of air. Gin hoped they wouldn’t get into trouble about that.
Seated now, lady Akyuu swept the hair out of her eyes – and then peered up at her purported favourite errand boy, in that quaintly amused way she did whenever she expected him to be, well, himself.
“Something to add, Gin?” she asked, dense with expectation.
Gin purposed to meet it, if it damn near crushed him. “Actually—” he began.
( ) Were there more scenic jobs up for grabs? Maybe something left over from morning? ( ) Could he in any way take her mind off of whatever was stressing her out?
Gin's a good old boy; he's faithful. We already turned down Ichirin to stick with the Q, so let's not abandon her in her time of need. [X]Could he in any way take her mind off of whatever was stressing her out?
(X) Could he in any way take her mind off of whatever was stressing her out?
“Actually—” said the courier, in his candidest voice. “Can I conceivably do anything for you, young mistress?”
The expectation dropped. Gin watched it trundle down lady Akyuu’s face. It was difficult to track the minutiae on such a schooled face as hers, but certain small muscles were set hastily once her lips began to inch open.
“… That,” she accused after a moment, “was your off-shift voice, Gin.”
“I was being off-shift,” he said off-shiftly. “That tanuki is way past rut and well into spinsterhood, young mistress. How do I kick it out? Any beating sticks?”
There was a bump in the conversational pavement as lady Akyuu’s less perfect aural memory was brought to the test. It re-treaded their morning exchange and located the tanuki in dispute.
“… Sadly,” she sighed – incredibly, not at the joke, “unless you mean to critically rearrange my biology, Gin, this tanuki is here to grow old. I have been afoul of a migraine ever since waking up; I may have been shorter with you for this reason. And then, there are those house business hiccups I have not yet smoothed over… Or had you perhaps noticed something was different today?”
“Nope. Nothing out of the routine,” said Gin. Then, conciliatorily, he added, “Sorry. I meant your shortness.”
Lady Akyuu’s royal purple eyes blinked. Then, her nose and tonsils conspired against the class gap and extracted from her a small, unrefined sound. The young noblewoman sneered up at her could-be-favourite with arch mirth.
“You make me laugh, Gin.”
The courier cocked a brow. “That was more of a snort, young mistress.”
Akyuu sketched a shrug. “Yes, well, belike I would pop a disc if I tried pulling you up to my level. Stooping seemed easier in contrast. Make no mistake, however; I do adore that about you. Make me laugh always, please.”
And there it was. The warm glow of ego initiating nuclear fusion. A girl two-thirds his age, and she rolled him back to late boyhood with fewer than ten words. There was a saying: “age is irrelevant, unless you happen to be a bottle of wine;” and, while a kind of alcohol in another world, Gin here was demonstrably not that. Strive though he might, currently, in overall colouration.
He did, therefore, feel a touch immature. Of course, he was a touch immature, but that didn’t make him feel any more mature about it. For cause of that, he slapped a palm over the big, blooming, red giant of a grin Akyuu’s compliment had fused on his face. That stellar accident contained, he dragged the hand, with apt theatrics, across his eyes, forehead, and through the matted coat of hair he’d scrupulously raised to keep his skull warm. He stared the cunning young lady down, who smiled knowingly in return – rather insinuating an exhaustive, evening course in Gin-astrology somewhen in her past.
“… You make my teeth ache, young mistress,” he surrendered.
“Sweets will do that to you,” said Akyuu, with an innocence that was quite possibly feigned. A lock of hair was swept behind an ear before the noble daughter of the Hieda decided to relent, “Verbal fisticuffs aside, I do appreciate the gesture, Gin. No, you may not do for me anything I would not have had my maids do already: herbal remedies and sucking mints included. It’ll pass when it does. If it does, however… would you, perhaps, do me the satisfaction and come here after I’ve folded for the day? I will have Vivi make us tea. We can sit and talk and… How was it said in your heyday – ‘ang around?”
Gin forwent the accent, because it was embarrassingly close. Instead, he pointed out this: “You know I hate red tea.”
“Yes, it is one of your great follies. There are other kinds in the kitchens, Gin; don’t be simple. Will you or will you not risk those, do you reckon?”
Gin Akamatsu might be a runner for life, but away was only the conventional direction. Some things, you were meant to run into. “Yes, no, absolutely,” he sounded off, “I would love to.”
“Very well. That is bound to be a nice diversion…” Lady Akyuu trailed off, her smile flickering at something else come to mind. “Ah, and Gin…?” she added on. “If I were to say, ‘Do not get your hopes up’ – would that get your hopes up awfully?”
Gin’s jaw squeaking open was the unthinking reply. A remainder of an echo of lady Akyuu moaning “Fuck me” rattled inside a secret compartment of his mind. He kicked it, and then himself – for inconspicuousness.
“It—” he spoke up, an avatar of self-control in everything but the name, “It would… not. Awfully.”
Lady Akyuu handled the answer well under the circumstances, which included biting and then un-biting her bottom lip with such nimble speed it would have put a post office lady stamping envelopes at quarter-to-four in the afternoon to mortal shame. “… Well, it is at times prescribed,” she said, in the snide manner such ladies are wont to, “to take your tea bitter, so that the biscuits taste sweeter. With this in view… do not get your hopes up, Gin. Understood?”
He said, “Yes,” which was true. And then, “I’ll try, young mistress.” Which was not.
It proved good enough of a balance not to tip lady Akyuu’s mended mood. “I commend you luck,” she allowed. “And then, my favourite errand boy, you, I commend you to work. I’ve headaches aplenty to contend with without you distracting me. In more ways than one, come to think of it. Where are those mints…”
It’s a date, Gin aped in his head, because to do so aloud would be to tempt the wrath of all Hieda. He’d been in the process of screwing his cap back on when something stiff poked him in the thigh.
“… Uh, lady Akyuu?” he recalled. “A question?”
“Yes? What?” Akyuu called out from under the writing table, where, to all appearances, her remedies had escaped. “What is it?”
Gin stared at the cute, round butt thrust above the table’s edge. Then remembered the packet down his pocket. “Um. Any idea where a man could… market some gold in town?”
The butt froze – wiggled backwards – and commuted into a frowning face. “… Why?”
“Well,” Gin started, “a grandmother of mine recently passed the ghost, and—”
Akyuu’s brows barred off the rest of the sentence. “Your grandmother in the Outside World, I presume?”
“Oh, no. I meant— a grandmother of a friend of mine—”
“Yes?” said lady Akyuu.
Gin licked his teeth. “… I do have friends, young mistress,” he protested. “I’ll have you know. We drink together every end of the week, remember?”
“That constitutes friendship? What a world. No, Gin. What is this about?”
The courier swallowed his painstakingly cooked-up excuse. It didn’t taste like chicken. No, sir-ee. “… Those youkai at Myouren’s,” he confessed, “had no money. They paid in shiny tit-bits instead.”
Lady Akyuu’s features softened in both sympathy and experience, while Gin clocked himself inwardly for the wordplay. Phooey; even his lesser part agreed.
A clear sheet of paper and a pen had in the meantime found their way into the young noblewoman’s hands, where she was now putting them to smart use. “Here,” she said, scribbling, “try at these metalworks and this trader. Should you want to name-drop the family, I am going to need a chitty back for our treasurer. Whatever you haggle is fine, only do consign the fee later. Otherwise—” she handed him the paper, “—I shall have to readjust the figures at the close of the day. And that, I fear, might cut into our… shall we say, appointment?”
Sternly, Gin pocketed the note. Then, conversely, he bowed. “Yes’m,” he said on the upswing. “‘Twill be done on the song. My oath.”
Akyuu’s replying look was a silent variation on the theme of You Had Better.
Being Gin was, occasionally, like being gin. A girl could bring you along to a hen night, only to then drown you in inordinate amounts of tonic – or elsewise other, bitter stuff – with scant regard for the art of proportions. The thing with so-treated gin and tonic was, though, that afterwards everything there was usually no more tonic, but there was still a lot of gin. And that, an enterprising girl could take back home and nurse to sleep by herself. With lady Akyuu’s feeble insistence no such untoward things were in the offing, whatever bitter tasks she yet put Gin to became merely something to weather without going flat.
In streetwise vernacular, she’d bloody well bewitched him. He’d bloody well not minded.
The town’s cobblestone streets were congesting by the time Gin had parcelled out the requisite orders and threats. Not for Gensokyo’s people the dream of a Winter-long sit-down in front of a fireplace; even now, piles of clothing in the shape of men and women were marching up and down the alleys and thoroughfares, in contempt of frigid temperatures. They soldiered on as if it were a kind of warfare. It was carrying things, apparently, that went against the Gensokyan Convention.
The campaigning thinned as Gin swerved into a side-street flanked all along by a tall, redwood fence. A matching gate stood, flung wide open, about the middle of the estate, some hundred-odd yards farther down. Two hundred across, mused Gin. The Hieda clan may rank among the wealthiest in Gensokyo; wealth, however, only coincided often with girth. It didn’t cause it. How, then, a line of textile spinners had come into the occupancy of such a wide strip of land in the heart of a dense town was anyone’s fair guess but Gin’s.
Unaccosted by anyone, which oddly dashed his mood, the messenger strode past the open gate and onto the estate grounds. A broad driveway spread out in a die-straight line until a squat manor house another hundred yards distant, with family business arrayed on either side beneath open-walled sheds, roofed stalls and atop weather-worn bamboo pallets. A smattering of labourers in drab Winter robes was milling about, taking inventory. Whether it was of the merchandise or their own, doleful circumstance, counting bales of fabric out in the elements – was a perennial mystery.
A swift survey of the yard found it, however, clothesless. Unless, of course, the house’s new artisan meant for Gin to deliver the clothes with workers still inside them. That, he amused inside, would’ve smacked of another type of business altogether.
Cavalry arrived without a horse, armour or sword and in the unorthodox gender. A young woman, with inky hair tied up in a prissy bun, broke away from her work on the stockpile to approach the out-of-place Gin standing in her yard. There was a look of efficient competence worn over her high, bare forehead, where two more such looks could, if need be, fit without a strain. She couldn’t be called beautiful if Gin was squinting through the bottom of a tankard, but “plain” came close, if it was a wide, grassy plain, with a bunch of trees and a family of lions lounging in the shadow, waiting the inattentive gazelle to wander by.
“Sir? May I help you?” was the wary greeting.
And Gin thought he knew who the gazelle was. Of course, as any lion could tell you, the trouble with gazelles was that they tended to be quick on their feet as well as tasty. “Gin Akamatsu,” said Gin Akamatsu. “With the Hieda. I’m your runner today. Clothes or something – wasn’t it?”
There was a relaxing of leonine haunches. “Aah—” The woman nodded her recognition. “That. Yes. Well, you’ll want Yams for this.”
“Where do I get a hold of one?”
The joke glanced right off of her smooth forehead. Her robed shoulders jogged up and down in an expression of endless ignorance. “No clue,” she admitted. “The leggy thing’s all over these days. Mother’s wringing her for all she’s worth. Hold on for a tic. HEY, YOU BASTARDS!” The sudden shout turned heads all around the yard. Which was likely the intention. “Seen our blond genius around, have you? Anyone?”
A male worker, perched atop one of the sheds, yelled back, “Here! Saw her sidlin’ for the shack out back ‘bout a few ago!”
The woman at Gin’s side scowled thunderously. “The bleeding hell are you doing up there?!”
The worker saluted, very seriously. “Checkin’ for more blondes, miss Akari!”
“Cheeky monkey…” A shake of the head, and the alleged miss Akari swivelled back toward Gin. “Well, there you have it. Shack out back. Around the house and behind the hedgerow. There’s a wicket by the outer fence. Can’t get lost.”
The courier assumed a professional face. “… Could you not fetch her for me?”
“Me? Oh, mercy. I daren’t interrupt… well, whatever she’s busy with in there this time. Actually, she could do with a lesson. Yams’s a smart girl, but she’s a little thick in the naivete department. Among other places…”
“Sounding more genius by the hour, this Yams,” mocked Gin.
The woman called Akari gave him a slicked-down frown. “Her proper name’s Yamame,” she warned. “I’d advise against ‘Yams’ short of acquainting her first – ‘less you want on Naoto’s bullish side. That’s the main side, by the way, where Yams’s concerned.”
“Yamame,” minced Gin. “… Why’s that tinkle a bell in my head?”
Akari shrugged it down. “You don’t ask; I don’t tell. Yams might, if she fancies. Wicket by the fence,” she repeated. “There’s thorns in the hedge, so don’t bloody leap it. OK? One moron athlete was enough. GOTCHER BLONDES, THEN?!”
That last demand had been trained at the worker on the shed, who bellowed back with good humour, “Not a one, miss Akari!”
Miss Akari squared her slim shoulders. “Then why’re you still looking?! Get down, before I yank you down like a dumbass apple!”
There were, in Gin’s second-hand observance, two schools of employering in the world. There was the loud, inquisitorial one, where management made themselves everybody’s problem and, therefore, no one’s. And then there was the heels-on-the-ground approach, where subordinates were treated as distinct human beings, making any and all attention from on-high pressing and personal. Lady Akyuu had learned this, and she directed her troupe of underlings with more or less intimate knowledge of their inner workings. And, equally important, failings.
Miss Akari was trying. There were evidently failings yet to be explored, however, as despite her stomping over with a thundercloud for a face, the fellow up on the roof insisted on becoming an apple.
Gin left them to the harvest.
There proved indeed to be a shack secreted away in the estate’s farther reaches, which Gin had traversed at no further expense to his pace, owing to the old, look-poised-to-share-responsibility ploy. It seemed the sort where a kind groundskeeper would put away their tools so as not to confuse the delicate sensibilities of their master: away from lordly eyes, wood and weeds all over and circled by a chest-high hedge of menacing holly. Gin considered at first the aforementioned leap, only for the pinkie-long thorns to provide a lifetime supply of second thoughts. The wicket felt suddenly not as threatening.
The courier slid past the rusted-through thing. He shut it behind him, padded for the most nearby window, peeked inside—
—and ducked under the windowsill on mercifully quiet knees.
There were crates in the shack. There were motes of dust. There were rolls of closer unidentified material that could have been anything from old rugs to a misplaced original of Gogh’s Poppy Flowers. There was a rickety patio table with a bleached top.
And there was a couple making out on it.
Gin Akamatsu had an affair at work. Other people also had work. Therefore, it was not inconceivable that they would have had their own affairs. It was an ageless societal vogue which he, in his rush of responsibility, had forgotten. Gin stuck an eye over the sill. The couple, in dingy robes that would’ve blended them into the enterprise out front, was going at it without a change in enthusiasm. The man looked as though he’d tried, like a good son who eats his veggies, to outgrow the average doorframe, but due to an overweening survival instinct stopped a fraction of an inch short. The woman, with a bobbing, blond ponytail, could have been attempting the same – except sideways.
From his (disad)vantage behind the dirty glass window, Gin could discern the sides of their faces: flushed, breathless, occupied with nothing more than stuffing their tongues down each other’s mouths. The skirts of the woman’s robe were ridden up to her waist, displaying her large, plump derriere, which the man groped, squeezed and kneaded with such abandon, the back of her panties was eaten up completely by the now-nude buttocks. Gin almost jumped, in his hidden front seat, when the man clapped her solidly on one bared cheek, leaving the skin pink and the girl squealing in fright around his tongue. He spanked her again for this, and this time her whole body tensed and arched in masochistic glee. Her ass went from pink to cherry-red, to being smothered by the man’s paddle-sized palms.
There was a hint of squirming, and the two managed to peel away from each other long enough to exchange a handful of gasped, aroused confessions. The dumpy, blond Yamame (for it had to be her; the legginess miss Akari had mentioned left little room for tiptoeing) had but to scuff slightly backwards on his lap for it to become plain where her spare hand had been all along: down the man’s trousers, softly pumping up and down all the while they had kissed. She smiled now, slowed her tempo… and then gave him a burst of quick, hard strokes that had his legs bucking underneath her seat. Then, ahead their fun was brought up too short, Yamame let go – and jerked her perverted hand out into murky daylight.
While her big lover reclaimed his chipped composure, the bare-butted clothier raised her hand for examination. Without a kernel of visible shame, she stuck out her tongue and ran it up the inside of her palm. Her ruddy lover (and not only he) stared on, jaw agape, as she licked between her digits, lapped around the knuckles and sucked on each fingertip in turn. Once they were clean, and not a moment before, Yamame once more faced her man to show off the results of her nimble tongue-work.
Somewhere, a coin was dropped. Tempted beyond humiliation by the pudgy woman’s skills, the man sprang from the table, all but launching Yamame from his lap. There were no complaints (but for those of Gin’s internal cavemen when her robe spilled down over Yamame’s amazing rear); and by the time her lover skinned his underpants, the girl herself was down on her knees before him, ready to reapply her talents where they would feel the best. A dreamy, almost beatific smile blossomed out on her lips when his manhood was freed and stood at attention less than a handspan from her face. That handspan became no-span when Yamame scuffed forward and pressed her starry-eyed face against her lover’s meaty underside. She pursed her lips and pecked a loving smooch on its thick base, while the swollen tip parted her fringe and stuck out over her forehead.
It wasn’t easy for Gin not to compare, but a rogue thought did it for him anyway. If it’d been him measuring his endowment against Yamame’s face, he would only go from her chin to the bridge of her nose. At fullest mast. What veggies had this man been fed?
Whatever they had been, they hadn’t gifted him with self-restraint. A few grunted words rattled out of his chest, at which the girl worshipping his dick happily unrolled her tongue. She pressed it flat to his base, peered up into his eyes and, never once breaking the contact, dragged it up his whole, arching length – scooping up the precum from her earlier hand-job and leaving a sticky trail of saliva in her wake. At the top of her little world, Yamame paused to gulp down her bounty; meanwhile, down below, she ringed two fingers around her lover’s hard tool – and tugged. The man let fly a bearish groan when Yamame’s soft, practiced lips hugged around his most sensitive part. Her ponytail furnished the much-needed support, and he gripped it tightly in one fist as her mouth travelled down two-thirds of his length, then back up: slurping, sucking and keeping the head stripped the whole, obscene way.
The second trip lasted half as long, saliva and precum causing Yamame’s lips to slip with ease along her lover’s sturdy erection. The third went even smoother. So did the next. The blond woman rocked her head back and forth, scratching his naked thighs, sometimes moaning, sometimes screwing her mouth in tiny left-and-right motions as she pulled up, sometimes pausing to spit a glob of mixed body fluids onto her lover’s upright tool before resuming the sloppy blowjob.
It was the lewdest, most indecent, outrageous blowjob that Gin, freezing slowly in his hidden VIP spot, had ever seen. It was a wonder, no, two wonders, how the large man could endure a minute of Yamame’s expert oral sex, let alone running on three, let alone-alone after an edging, under-pants handy. He was either a veritable dick magician himself or…
… Or, Gin thought, he had got this kind of sex therapy every day, the bastard, and evolved a heightened resistance. The devil. The absolute, reprobate, super-lucky bastard.
Any way you stabbed it, that blowjob wasn’t ending any soon. Gin bunched his scattered faculties, took a deep, cooling breath, and—
—And had scarcely flexed a toe when the man’s voice rumbled from inside the shed.
On that cue, the loyal, obedient Yamame let his hard-on pop out of her loving mouth with a spurt of milky lubricant. Her fingers snapped to her robe, where they picked apart the sash. A simple, black lace bra winked from inside the gap, which Yamame lost no time in losing as well. There was a click (that could have been entirely in Gin’s imagination); and something huge was loosed inside the woman’s clothes. The relieved bra slithered to the floor as Yamame slowly, seductively parted the halves of her robe.
Two enormous, soft, mouth-watering breasts were unleashed on the unprepared world – and Gin’s even less prepared eyes. He’d seen breasts before. That couldn’t be taken away from him under torture. A gorgeous pair, even, no farther than this very morning. Not like these. Sister Ichirin’s breasts had been round and firm; Yamame’s were cushiony and magnetic: teardrop-shape, motherly things, with dark, almost brown nipples that stood perkily on the ends despite the slight overall sag. When Yamame hefted one, the flesh flattened deliciously against her palm and sank between her fingers. Gin sizzled with infinite envy for that palm.
These weren’t simply big tits. These were the primordial vision of the perfect tits that men would murder to get their oiled-up hands on. And raze a small-to-medium country to get their dick sandwiched between.
The courier hadn’t to wait longer than Yamame opening her mouth and spitting in her cleavage to realise he was about to bear witness to just such a momentous event. He crouched, riveted in place, the front of his trousers so stiff it offered to ram down the shack’s door if need presented. Fuck, fuck, fuck, he thought philosophically, eyes glued to the sight of the plump, blond sex-bomb rubbing her tits together. And then, with introspection, I should’ve gotten Ichirin to give me one too.
There was nothing else for him to do. Gin—
( ) Watched on… but someone was watching the watcher. ( ) CRASHED this rendezvous. With NO RELEASE.
Gin was through-and-through a man, and a man wasted not.
As he told himself this, his dick and his tact fought for space in the focus. His dick walked away with a parting eyeful of Yamame’s awesome, brown-tipped teats, searing the scene into the back of his retinae for later contemplation. His tact, meanwhile, walked away with his body: scrabbling on all fours, until he was certain not to be spotted by the two debauchees inside as he pushed back to uprightness. With courier-drilled speed, he withdrew to the wicket, whereat he, with courier-drilled obtrusiveness, jostled it on its hinges.
Rusted pins made love to rusted sockets, screaming like damned souls at Nine Inch Nails gig. Gin banged it close, not without an ugly undertone of vengeance, before plodding around the shack’s windowless flank in a quest for a door. Once one issued from the ubiquitous moss, the courier once again put all his expertise at the tips of his fingers. Or knuckles, as it were in this instance. The knock turned out at a nice, obnoxious bass.
There were sounds of anxious scuffling from within. There was the rumpus of someone being shoved into an empty cabinet, and the hushed exclamation of someone else refusing to be pulled along. And last, there was the clatter of doors being shut, thankfully on nothing delicate, and a rush of sandaled feet. Something heavy was dragged aside from the egress. Gin adamantly didn’t speculate the purpose – or in fact the sense – of the precaution.
“Sorry, yes, I am here,” came a flustered reassurance. “This is in the way… S—Sorry, there was this really pretty curtain lying around, and I just had to—”
The door pitched open, ejecting a contrite at first, but then bewildered Yamame. The blond clothier had done up her habit; to Gin, however, who’d seen what she’d been up to, against and underneath, the attempt at propriety was thinner than chiffon. The collar of her robe had to be clasped by hand so as not to split from the pressure of her unrestrained breasts; her face was agleam with exertion and sweat and, perhaps most tellingly, there was no curtain that could have made even a dyed-in-the-wool couturier blush this deep of a red. If any doubt could be had of Yamame’s state, it would only be whether she’d narrowly avoided a pregnancy or merely a bad breath. In brief, she looked even sexier in a frown and dishabille. As if she was begging someone to finish the job – but not you.
The lips that had been polishing her lover’s man-meat not five moments before now set into a brittle, sceptical smile.
“Um,” she said, drawing back, almost leaving the smile awkwardly in the air. “You aren’t—”
“Gin Akamatsu,” spoke routine, smashing aside both wit and cynicism. It seized his eyes halfway to Yamame’s almost-cleavage and tossed them over her shoulder, where no signage of a man in similar disarray was presenting. Which had been, perhaps, the point. “… With the Hieda. I’m a runner. Here for some, uh, clothes?”
Three flutters of the wide, mistrusting eyes, and a flash of recognition fried the uncertainty away. “Oh. Oh! The dresses, right! I’ve waited for days for those to be picked up, you know? Mother then got the idea to have them delivered, only no one with a lay of the town could be spared, since we’re clearing out stocks before the solstice festival, and—” At this juncture, the enthused beauty realised she wasn’t taking her audience with her. “Ah, wait, no,” she whined, as though the courier was apt to up and run off unburdened with merchandise, “I mean, yes, but this is probably not your hunt— um, your business, yes? You want the dresses. Mother, that is, Naoto’s mother, she had them all readied. They’re in the indoor magazine. J—Just let me get this—” here, she eased the shack door shut, “and, and follow me, OK?”
As any interrogatory “OK” uttered by female lips, this one, too, proved unnegotiable, and the naughty clothier hurried for the wicket without Gin’s express consent. Not that one was indispensable; Yamame, he sensed, could “OK” a greater man into lower things with ease. A faint tremor of dread, as that of being watched, plummeted between Gin’s shoulder blades as he turned to follow Yamame’s (regrettably clothed) rear out of the derelict enclosure. He resisted peeking back, not least because meeting the eyes of a man whose dick he’d so recently seen would have smacked of dropped soap and communal showers.
In but a handful of shakes (rendered generously by Yamame’s ample hips), the courier had been led to a side entrance in the manor house, bade to wait, chilled, and lastly treated to the sight of Yamame lugging a bamboo carry-rack stacked with canvas-and-twine-wrapped packets. There was a name and an address stippled onto each, the clothier would explain, and some of these were fabulous pieces indeed: with basques and sequins and gimps and other fancy words that could have pricked up Lady Akyuu’s ears, but only plinked off of Gin’s.
He shook Yamame’s hand on the deal (only recalling later where said hand had lately been), vowed not to tell a soul where he’d found her, hoisted the rack onto his back, and set out again for the estate’s cordially open gates.
He hadn’t rounded them when he was checked in his tracks once more.
“Nice clobber, gin man. Whistle-whistle and so on. Long-time no drink, huh?”
A sigh of chilly, Winter wind brought the voice to him, over the echo of a warm Summer night, the colour of gold and far many more cups than would have been advisable. Gin’s brain dredged it up: half a year distant, a marinaded echo of a night out with those friends so derided by lady Akyuu, siphoning ale like lemonade and disbursing their monthly worth at a tavern in the seedier ward of the town. And there, the olive in the pickled memory, was a girl in the brightest, flashiest getup Gin had ever been blinded by, prying their tight-knit group with a joke and a cocky smile and wedging herself into the gap with nary an objection from the members. She’d been passably cute, funny, and they’d had the money. She’d drunk them under the table one by one, a head of lead under a waterfall of jet hair, until only Gin, in his dubious achievement, had remained.
And then, she’d artlessly implied quieter environs would be appreciated for the remainder of the night. Gin, who could detail few things from there on, had volunteered his private quarters at what Gensokyo’s township had come to refer to as the bachelors’ yard. It’d be cramped, he had joked, but with some sweat they could both slide in. They had, too; and Gin had managed to entertain an even sweatier idea before the girl had confessed something that’d hurled the notion out the window.
That she was a youkai. A tsuchigumo, an earth spider, from the Underworld. A menace from far below the Goddesses’ Mount, here on some unspecified business concerning her species.
No chaser of “I won’t bite if you don’t” could have roped up the defenestrated thoughts of hanky-panky, however; and Gin had spent the weest hours of the morning pouring lukewarm drinks for a creature that could have worn his fingers on a necklace, yet appeared content lounging on his bed and griping away on her personal woes. So confounded had he been that, come sunrise and goodbyes, he’d succumbed to daring and given her cheek a friendly kiss.
The earth spider had smiled (rather timidly, he’d fancied) and kissed his in return. He hadn’t met her since.
Until, evidently, now.
Well, I did allude to her to sister Ichirin, so calling the thunder may apply, thought Gin, but carefully. Some youkai took offence to superstition, goofy as it might be, and it wasn’t wise to row with one in the open. The odds were apt to drown you. Surprise had to rule, even if it was edged with a “kuwabara” or two.
“Ashi?” the courier volunteered. “Yeah, blast, long-time… What’re you doing here?”
The earth spider named Ashi, who was not inside her sparkling, gold-scale dress, but a black, crimson-streaked kimono fit for any moody enough town-girl, ignored the overtone of demand in the question. In fact, she ignored the question altogether, tonal attributes notwithstanding, and pushed away from the wall she’d been shoring up.
“Working hard, are we?” she asked, eying the rack asway over Gin’s shoulders.
“Working,” Gin conceded. “About to go on a grand old tour of the town by the earmarks. Why?”
Ashi’s narrow, slanted eyes narrowed even more under the weight of poorly worn modesty. “Mind if I tag along, gin man?”
Yes, I needed another youkai encounter inside the day, Gin reflected. Which his mild disposition translated as, “Sure, if you can keep up. I want this done before the evening’s out, so I’ll be burning rubber. Working – remember?”
“I’ve smelt worse,” Ashi assured him, very seriously. “And I can burn things too, no big deal. Youkai – remember?”
Wish I had, thought Gin, the sensation of the spider-girl’s decidedly un-chitinous cheek seeping from his memory. “Well. It’s your funeral if we run headlong into the Hakurei.”
“It’s yours if we run headlong into a lamp post,” Ashi countered. “How’s that bump, by the way? Healed yet?”
“It’s had half a year. I don’t even look like an Oni when I take off the cap anymore.”
Ashi sniggered. “Those bleeding Oni. Which way, gin man?”
“Over the hill first,” said Gin. “I’ll have to see where next from there.”
“All right. I want to have a gander at the school house. Let’s swing by it, OK?”
Gin winced. And then, he set off at a familiar trot down the cold cobblestone streets.
As she had said it, Ashi turned out to be a sharp follower: weaving around people where Gin had to slow and pull over, and whisking her shorter legs where he stretched his. There was a saying: “walk softly and hire a shrine maiden with a big stick,” but the small, fleet-footed youkai seemed to do fine with only a half of the old folk insight. Talking, nevertheless, was a contingence that couldn’t quite land until they had veered off the main thoroughfares and onto one of the less trodden side-alleys. There, Gin finally gave voice to a factoid that had been paddling around the creek of his mind with confused helplessness.
“Haven’t seen you in a while,” he noted.
The whole four-and-a-half foot of girl bouncing beside him shrugged. “Haven’t been around in a while.”
The courier snorted his reply. That was the thing he’d learned quickly with Ashi once they had been alone: that the spider-girl only talked at length about things she had a lot to talk about. Those she didn’t, she… well, didn’t. In a better world, that would have been a virtue.
“… What gives?” prompted Gin, who lived instead in this one.
Ashi diced her answer, which was then offered up in small, succinct chunks. “There was an accident. Guy who speaks for us dropped out of evidence for a while. Weren’t anybody else to get us jobs up here. Things’re spinning back on now, so I came around to check on… someone.” There was a derisive sigh. “She’s well off enough without me, though. And you? What’ve you been up to, gin man?”
“On the universal scale? Nothing much,” admitted Gin. “Today? Well, I had me a nice jog to the Myouren temple—”
“Myouren!” spat Ashi. And it was quite a decent spit, possibly one you could shine an entire boot with. “Hate the place. Has the head priestess scooped that broom out of her arse yet?”
Gin couldn’t stave off the grin. He remembered now why he’d liked Ashi. There were no stops on the girl; if she had something to say, you couldn’t hang up an etiquette she wouldn’t blithely scribble all over. Whether that came with being a youkai or with being Ashi specifically was one of the rare things she wouldn’t tell. It made Gin want to tickle her.
Tickle, he mused, right… “Well,” he said aloud, “as luck had it, I did without looking up her skirt. The delivery was for someone else.”
Ashi made a ward against evil with her hands – and somehow didn’t pop out of existence. “Yeah, lucky’s right,” she said. “Gods above, but I loathed working with that woman. I’d lose count of the bleeding times she tried to help every day…”
“It should be. And this thing?” She jabbed a thumb at the courier’s workload. “From that sod-off big place we met at?”
Gin snapped the straps against his chest. “And a-one, and a-yup,” he exhaled. “Not very bad, all in all, since it’s just clothes. Weird, though.”
“Oh, it’s a courier-y thing,” Gin explained. “They were blasted well organised for first-timers. Usually, new clients only grunt and moan when pressed for finer points. Like, say, the recipient’s address. When lady Akyuu— er, that is, my employer – when she briefed me, I imagined I’d have to slowly talk the walk over before I could walk it. But, no. All I had to do was stroll in and look lost. Got asked a few questions, got some directions—”
“And got to peep on my hot sister?” suggested Ashi, conversationally.
He thawed a moment later, auspiciously still inside the same year. His feet rolled over into the next tread as if the obstruction had never been there, and Gin trawled the seas of his personal history for something even more embarrassing to mellow the allegation, like his briefs getting nicked by a fairy to be repurposed as a hat. That did semi-nicely, and he felt semi-better about rising to Ashi’s bait regardless of the visible hook.
“… Gods, yes,” Gin’s reply swirled out from between his lips. The prick was short and the bait was sweet, and he went on to sigh, “Yes. Yes, I did…”
Ashi didn’t even wrench the rod. This was the prettier side of the petite earth spider’s ugly underbelly: that you could tell her anything. Honesty, of the blunt type, was her weapon of choice; and she had no complaints for being hit with the same. In fact, she pointedly turned the other cheek. A pithy “Hmf” was her harshest criticism.
“Hmf,” Ashi gave it now, though Gin couldn’t be positive at what exactly. Its vast inaccuracy was its main design fault.
The courier coughed up the rest of the delicacy stuck in his airways. “OK,” he said, as impotent as the magic letters felt in his mouth. “I must know. How did you…?”
“I was peeping too,” said Ashi, who wouldn’t know delicacy if she ate one. “I’d been up in a tree out front, waiting for Yams to turn out, when you waltzed in and started slinging questions around. I heard about the shack and got there before you. I was on the roof.”
“There was a skylight,” the spider-girl clarified. “It had a wide view of everything. Including this guy hunkered at a window. I was about to join you and share impressions when you upped and made a commotion.”
That gave rise to a world of afterthoughts, so Gin decided he hadn’t heard it.
He did, however, hear what Ashi wished to know next.
“So. How was she, in your opinion?”
Gin choked. There had been a sneaky chunk of delicacy left. “You—” he spluttered. “Why ask me?! Go and ask her man!”
“Her man makes my fangs itch,” grumbled Ashi. “He’d tell Yams, too, and that could put a fire under my seat. If Yams didn’t burn of shame first, anyhow. That girl has a self-image problem from here to Moriya.”
Could have flipping well missed me, thought Gin. “… And? What did you want me to say for it?”
“I want you to tell me,” said Ashi, “if she looked good to you. Keep up.”
The courier hesitated. “Her body or…?”
Something that could have been jealousy, if jealousy took an anger management class, crawled beneath Ashi’s reply. “… I know she has a great body,” she admitted. “I’ve got eyes. I meant her handiwork. Or mouth-work, or what-have-you. The stuff she did with them.”
“So, her skills?”
“Yup. Skills. This’s a decent term.”
Gin gazed dead ahead as he replied, “… They seemed fine.” He said the words as if pulling them out with pliers. “Yeah. Nothing to fault. Good motions. Just really, really fine.”
Ashi brimmed with scepticism. “That’s your big takeaway? Just fine?”
There were only so many bushes to beat around for a man with no more delicacy, and Gin had tripped over his last. He ground to a stop, casting glances up and down the alley, which no one cast back, as it happened, on account there was no one to do so. Ashi was the only other pair of eyes present, and hers weren’t ones to glance. They were to stare at you in that faintly mocking way women did when they knew you were about to dig your own grave.
Gin didn’t care. He felt his ancestors ready to kick their heredity all the way from afterlife, but clenched his buttocks. “No!” he wheezed. “Of course not, it looked fucking amazing! OK? If it were me, I wouldn’t have lasted a fucking minute! Gods…” A freeze-frame of Yamame’s frothy lips smooching her lover’s exposed glans reeled behind the voyeur courier’s eyes. It was pursued by the motion clip of those same lips shaping an angelic smile before being wrapped around the shaft and glided neatly all the way down to the base. At that point, Yamame had almost surely to have been taking the excess length she couldn’t cram in her mouth into her throat. It would have anyway excused the copious amount of drool she’d leave all over it afterwards. And it’d still been her bulky lover who’d had to pull her back up said length by the blond ponytail. There, in that dusty storage shed, had been the exceptional woman who would not only blow you, but love every little moment of the slip and slide herself. A pervert’s treasure. “Takeaway?” scoffed Gin, aflush and rather less than composed. “Grade A, your sister is a fucking sexpot, my standards are spoiled forever. And, blast it, I’m going to dream about those tits,” the threw in, not without rancour. “That about what you wanted to hear?”
Although she was half a town afar, Gin could see an overlay of lady Akyuu on the slow, studied way Ashi folded her arms underneath her meagre chest. “… Not,” she supposed, “in so many words, but maybe? I don’t dis-agree, at least. It worked me up too.”
“Oh, good,” the courier breathed easier. “Then we’re in the same library, if not on the same page.”
“I don’t even find the dull man that appealing most days,” Ashi pondered aloud, “but when he took that monstrous thing out… That made me tingle.”
“It was a big monster,” Gin allowed, doing his best not to think too hard about it. “Ate up a lot of maidenheads, I bet.”
“And then Yams ate it up.”
That, he did think about. “And how.”
“Like a delicious treat,” supplied Ashi. “My dear sister always gets the best ones. It makes me bleeding green.”
“… Uh, Ashi?” said Gin, who’d flipped his brain on and off so much, the switch now seemed hardly to do anything. “I’ve got a question? When you say ‘sister,’ do you mean…?”
The spider-girl gave a lazy shrug which, despite her arms propping it up, did very little for her bust. “Not literally, but we are the same thing. Yams’s older, though. One of the oldest there are.”
Somewhere in the nether realm, Gin heard his ancestors shop for heavier shoes. “Ca-pi-tal,” he said, sarcasm bleeding between the cleft syllables. “So, I got excited for a girl who’s in a relationship, a blasted youkai and an old lady besides. Could I plummet any lower today?”
Ashi gave him a half-smirk. That meant that the smirk dimpled her (what, he knew, was a very smooth-feeling) right cheek, while her left remained perfectly flat. “Sure. Nothing easier.”
“And I would go about it, how, if I dared?”
The smirk didn’t move. Neither did Ashi. “Get excited for a slightly younger, blasted youkai, who isn’t in a relationship.”
“… And then what?” asked Gin, in fluent if somewhat halting hypothetical.
“Take her out for an evening drink and a stroll around town.”
“… And later?” Gin pressed on, because Ashi was just that kind of conversation.
“Walk her back to your place.”
“Shutter the windows, bolt the door and show her what’s so fun about eating a man’s monster,” she finished, to the numb shock of Gin and the mild delight of his “monster,” which had never been called such ahead now.
There was an appellation for a man who considered sex with girls half his size and apparent age, but Gin had stuffed it in a dictionary and bound the covers shortly after pulling himself out of lady Akyuu for the last time. A youkai with a young appearance proposing to learn oral sex on him twisted the definition at a strange angle. A strange, dangerous and dangerously thrilling angle.
“All… right,” said Gin, speaking like a man with a monster faced with a monster-eating one. “First of everything… We’ve gone halves on one cup, so you’re a friend where I’m interrogated. I’ve got to ask, though, youkai or no… Why?”
The petite earth spider didn’t smile flirtatiously in reply. She didn’t tip her head in a coy way or draw her silky, black hair behind an ear. She didn’t give the courier a flighty, sidelong gaze. Whether she didn’t do these things because she couldn’t or because she wouldn’t remained a speculation. “As you said, gin man,” she declared instead, “we’re friendly on each other. That’s enough to bed down together, innit?”
“Yes, blast it,” said Gin, not adding: if your morals are pliable and no malice is aforethought, “but why do you want to—”
“I do what I do; I want what I want,” Ashi chimed in. “I do not always do what I want, but I always want what I do.” And then, when the courier’s expression turned out a blank, “That was a play on words; you are supposed to think I’m clever and listen.”
Gin wrung his neck left and right. “No, you listen, clever girl. What is it that you want, here? No hard feelings, but I’d prefer a solid why if I’m to hop in a bed with a youkai.”
There was a conscientious moment as the spider-girl readjusted the weave of language to contain her labyrinthine inner world. “… I want to see,” she knitted out at length, “whether I can do the things my dear sister can.”
“Meaning what?” challenged Gin. “Sex? Your wondering alone should be a tell, shouldn’t it?”
And there it was. Another flare of emerald envy in the otherwise carmine eyes. “Yams’s the bleeding blond star of the Underworld, don’t mistake it,” Ashi insisted. “I’d need three more lifetimes’ worth of experience to look her level in the eyes. It’s infuriating, and it’s true, and it’s infuriating because it’s true. But if I can match her in the smaller, easier ways… the human ways… then that might just be enough for me. For this lifetime, anyway.”
“You sound plenty human to me,” offered Gin.
“It’s not about what you think, gin man,” Ashi shot him down. “It’s about me. I’m an earth spider and a female; we are selfish creatures, earth spiders and females. Look. I’ll be putting my mouth and tongue on and around your monster, so it ought to be fun on your end too. I’ll even take directions. Actually, I’ll expect directions. That’s a rare break, ordering an earth spider around. Only met one other man who has. Consider it.”
Gin omitted to say he’d already been considering putting her on and around his monster when they’d been first acquainted, because he and his monster had a tacit understanding. What it was strictly that they understood tended to shift with the tide; presently, however, they were in full agreement that becoming Ashi’s practice dick wasn’t the most gallant course of action. It could be damn hot, but it wasn’t gallant. And it wouldn’t do for Gin to skive off on his appointment with lady Akyuu, whom he vainly coveted, just for the privilege of teaching a curious spider-girl how to give deepthroat like her pro of a sister. It wouldn’t do to peel off Ashi’s kimono and grope that tight, little butt while she got him all hard and slippery. It wouldn’t do at all to get her drunk on the leftover gin and show her what happened to petty youkai who toyed with man so.
There was a subtle and insidious change in tide on the Gin archipelago, and he braced his oars.
“… You are the second youkai to harangue me for sexual favours today, did you know that?”
Ashi wasn’t one to be dissuaded by competition. “Am I going to be the first that gets them?”
He hadn’t to ask how she’d guessed it. He imagined it was painted all over the front of his trousers or, as it were, not painted all over it. He smoothed it down, then issued his ultimate argument. “… OK. Sorry, this’ll seem weak after all that, but… Tonight is bad, at any rate. I’ve a date booked. With an important woman. Very, very important. I don’t lie when I say I may not eat next month if I skip it. So…”
Ashi, the passably cute, small, sharp-witted Ashi, was as impressionable as a slab of concrete on a sandbank. “Then let’s go right now,” she proposed, with spiderlike speed. “Let’s hand over this all-important first package and take a break at your place.”
“I’m kind of on a time here, Ashi,” said Gin, which wasn’t false but certainly an embellishment. “I’d mentioned that, hadn’t I?”
The earth spider rolled her eyes at the crystalline sky. “I’m a go-doer myself, gin man; I know a quick breather can do wonders for productivity. Yams knows this. You saw it. And she’s a bleeding workhorse. Truth be told, I’d wager my wages she and dull man are mating as we speak. I’ve never known Yams to leave unfinished work. And if you’ll be a good man and help me,” she said slyly, “I’ll finish yours too. Quick and clean. Shall I?”
Gin licked his teeth. His arguments were crumbling around his ears. Ashi stood before him, as calm as could be, with a hammer in each hand.
There was but space enough between them for one conclusion to slip through.
( ) Quickie with the minor spider-girl!!! ( ) THE GIN BELONGS TO THE HIEDA!
As much as I love watching Yaf complain about how his readers avoid the porn when he personally gives them the choice to do so, I think this meme has gone for a bit too long. Let's give our MC and our author some slack.
While I did think we should save ourselves to unleash a titanic nut on Akyuu later, I also think that if we fall for anyone, it should be this cool spider girl [X] a quickie with the minor spider girl!!!
And the conclusion was something about horses and teeth, which felt to Gin ominously appropriate. Well, he thought, we all have a skeleton in the closet – even if it was a human one, not a horse’s, and carried, as it were, close to heart.
He sucked in a lungful of the chilly air. Then, he breathed out all of it in one capitulated, “… OK.”
Ashi gave him an affirmatory nod. It was void of conceit or even a smile of redress. For a creature dressed in flash and bluster, victory was by itself a full course for Ashi. It didn’t need to be spiced with her opponent’s ire. Her way was reward enough. The courier, who’d assented to her whims, was therefore given free leave to stare at her and stew, which he, with sufferance, did. Ashi’s lips were pulled in a thin, colourless line, and Gin’s ears heated up at the guilty thought of what he would be subjecting them to before long. Something else then began to draw blood too, and it knew no word like “guilt.” “To the hilt” was the next closest sound, and Gin had reasons to be leery of its chances. Those were small lips and a small mouth, and Ashi’s throat would have its task cut out for it if they were to proceed.
In a continuing streak of weakness, Gin vowed to his neighbour downstairs that he would get her to at least try. And then, in a bid not to give the petite earth spider the satisfaction she scorned anyway, he cautioned, “A change or two to the roadmap, though. First, this parcel. Afterwards, there’s another for nearby and then the next is somewhat in the direction of the bachelors’ blo— er, where I live. We hand these three in, then we swing around my place for that… breather. Oh, and no drinking. Let’s head off what accidents we can. Cool?”
“Ice-cold,” agreed Ashi. “On a second think, I do want a clear noggin for it. Soak up the lesson and everything.”
“And everything?” Gin repeated, slanting a brow.
It could have been a trick of the sound, sound being infamously a carrier of such, but there seemed to be a defensive note in Ashi’s voice when she said, “It’s an experience, gin man. Yanno?”
To his dwindling credit, the courier didn’t smile. “Uh-huh. I-no.”
“Had my qualms,” the spider-girl shot back. “Anyhow, let’s bunk off of that and go give out those dresses, ah? Yams’s prone to tear things back apart when they don’t find new owners. The girl’s such a stickler, it makes my blood boil.”
Gin Akamatsu had not been born yesterday, or even as near as the previous week, and abstained from remarking on the shift in the topic.
Soon afterwards a courier with a dainty spider-youkai in tow was scrambling up the staircase of a two-storey boarding house whence he, since years now lost to hangovers and irrelevance, had been studying the darker wedges of the clockface. Impeding the rumour mill with such obvious stealthiness it was bound to unbalance any practiced snitch, the two slipped past one of the unmarked doors and into a narrow, cosy room, wherein, barely contained, were the amenities of Gin’s life: a shoe-rack, a desk with the grafted function of a dining table, a pair of rickety chairs, a coal stove doubling as a heater, a bed and a cabinet close at hand, Gin being of the popular persuasion that a bachelor who had to walk more than four steps from the bed to the bar was a sad bachelor indeed.
The courier heeled off his Winter boots, advised his guest to follow suit, and then moved on to check on the stove. Satisfied the coals were aglow and the chimney wasn’t poised to chuff soot, Gin wiped down his hands, wormed out of his baggage, and did what unmarried men did when they came home off work. Which was to say, he threw himself bodily on the bed precluding so much as unbuttoning his coat.
Hihi’irokane was said to be the mythic Flame-Coloured Metal, but it would have paled beside Ashi’s eyes when Gin rolled onto his back. It would have bent around her tolerance as well, if the courier hadn’t taken the cue and fanned out his arms in a silent invitation. The black-robed, jet-haired spider-girl gave an acquiescing nod and skittered forth. Instinct (or a memory her sister’s know-how) spoke, and Ashi edged up on her knees: first onto the bed, then over Gin, finally to settle down astride him with the slim, acrobatic legs hugging his sides. The pressure of her firm butt atop his waist was so mild, she could as well have weighed no more than, say, a sack of salt. For some reason, Gin found this aspect of her body very comforting. There was something equally heart-warming in the way Ashi returned his scrutiny: calm, curious and tense, somehow all at once. And even if the minor earth spider hadn’t a half of her blond sister’s overwhelming allure, she could cause a man’s chest to wring with such a look. She was small and clever and pleasant to look at, and Gin acknowledged inwardly he really, really enjoyed having her where she was.
It was perhaps a funny sentiment, what with her being a youkai; nobody, however, had said men had to be rational at all times. A bit of fun every now and again went a long way towards sanity, except when someone was having it with you without your go-ahead, which fairly tended to be the case with youkai.
Ashi, of course, had promised to reciprocate, and Gin had more than gone her ahead, so he felt naught except boyish anticipation when he held up one of his hands. Ashi, puzzled and amused in balance, married her own to it, squeezing and lacing their fingers together. Spoiling the overall marks, hers were colder and stiffer than an ice-fairy’s nipples.
“A touch chilly, are we?” asked Gin.
The spider-girl peeked at their clasped hands. “Am I? I don’t feel it.”
“You are. It feels like a bunch of tiny icicles.”
“Could be a youkai thing,” Gin guessed. “Could not. Anyway. Shall we warm up a tad before…?” He let their distinct imaginations fill the gap in and possibly stretch it beyond repair.
“… If you insist,” supposed Ashi.
Gin sensed a surprised resistance once he began to pull on the spider-girl’s captured hand, and it was certainly not to do with propriety. It was after the courier had groped beside them for a blanket and thrown it over them both that Ashi yielded, lying down lengthwise him and letting the shroud fall. There, in the ensuant darkness, Gin Akamatsu sighed right contentedly; for if he were to be funned with by a youkai after all, it would at least be under one that felt good to be under. Ashi’s slight, lightweight figure was spread all along his front, easily raised and lowered as his breath came and went. The top of her inscrutable head bobbed up under Gin’s chin when the spider-girl flexed her back, and try as he might (which amounted to “not very hard”), he could not deny himself a whiff of that satiny, midnight-black hair. It didn’t smell like much but what his brain creatively labelled “Ashi.” He wondered if she smelled the same everywhere.
That academic interest was pushed out by reasserting delicacy, which led him to ask the crown of Ashi’s head, “… Comfortable?”
Lady Akyuu shook her head at Gin from inside his imagination for borrowing her own mannerisms to use on another girl, and in work hours to boot. Gin patted her down like a cute, but bothersome kitten.
Ashi, who hadn’t partaken in the private exchange, pondered her circumstance. “… Could be worse,” she decided. “It smacks of you in here. Or did you know?”
The courier’s humour curdled in his mouth. “Well. Sorry. I sleep and laze about here when I haven’t any place better to be. So…”
The spider-girl made an ugly sound into his collar. “… I didn’t say it was a bad smack,” she chided. “I’ve no idea how to phrase it without disturbing you, but… it’s tempting. Not as in I want to eat you; more as in I want this smell on me. Around me. I want to smell it. I hadn’t featured it would feel this way, but here is it.” There was a brief pause. “From the fact you aren’t running away, I’m assuming that made some sense?”
“Shockingly,” replied Gin, “a lot.”
“Nice. Then I’m already learning something,” said Ashi, and there was absolutely no undercurrent of relief beneath the statement, not on this youkai’s pride. What there was, was a prompt indulgence of the newfound inclination. Ashi’s spare hand delved inside Gin’s collar until finding the buttons, whereat it tugged them loose to make a path for her inquisitive nose. He felt it brush the skin above his left collarbone and rued not taking the care to reduce the number of layers between him and the spider-girl ahead of dragging her under the covers. Ashi, nestling pleasantly, spoke between deep draughts of her new treat. “… And you, gin man? Anything you like to do to girls like me?”
The courier breathed in. “… I subscribe to the simple joys, such as that of touching girls’ things.”
That, on top of his chest rapidly deflating, got an entertained snort out of Ashi. “Of course,” she said. “Well, I knew this, if vaguely. Go on, then. Touch where you like.”
The gears in Gin’s mind shifted so quickly that Ashi should have heard his drivetrain screech. He untangled his fingers from Ashi’s, which the spider-girl absently gave up, and slid the so-liberated hand, together with its sibling, down her sides, thighs and calves, then up under the bottom edge of her kimono. Ashi, being the nimble spider she was, raised her butt: freeing the fabric trapped underneath and allowing Gin’s questing hands to peel it from her legs. The legs emerged smooth, sleek and cool to the touch, though they plumped out and lost the chill the farther Gin’s palms skimmed up inside her clothes. It was once they arrived at the spider-girl’s upraised rear that they got a major and not entirely unwelcome surprise.
Ashi was going commando.
The courier’s bravado caught in his craw as his fingers wrapped around a set of smooth, firm buttocks, with not a scrap of cloth to get in the way and impair the experience. He thumbed, somewhat tentatively, around the spider-girl’s slim waist, but no – no funny, side-tie, high-riding business was going on here. Only plain-old, knickers-off depravity. His fingertips dug into the tight, springy flesh, extracting a low purr from Ashi… who, it turned out, had been busying herself with the buttons of Gin’s coat.
“… No panties?” he asked, not a little redundantly.
The pervy earth spider popped the bottommost of the buttons and parted the coat’s halves ahead she explained, “… Underwear’s a bitch and a half to come by in the Underworld, unless it is the potato sack lookalike kind. I try not to wear mine – or wear it out – if I mustn’t.”
As she spoke, Gin felt her tiny hands intrude under his sweater and slide over his undershirt. He gave her naked ass a return squeeze. “… What if you chanced on a naughty gust of wind?”
“I fancy that would make for a happy bystander, no?” Ashi doggedly tucked up his impeding sweater, while Gin groped for something smart to say. “You’re a pervert” seemed a little pointless; “Your ass is mine, so please don’t display it to anyone else” – a bit possessive. At the tail end of the minute, the spider-girl had worked through both the sweater and the shirt without him getting his chip in. Her prize, in the shape of Gin’s exposed front, beckoned her keen nose, which she traced covetously from his stomach, across his shaggy chest, and up to the base of his neck. “… Keep going, by the way,” she breathed, the heated words tickling his body hair. “OK? It feels nice when you do that. Go on.”
“… When I do what?” ventured Gin.
Shame was a friend Ashi had never met. “When you touch my butt,” she said at once. “Come on. You can do it like dull man did to Yams. I won’t bite.”
In the privacy of their bed-top tent, the courier’s thoughts raced back an hour, to the picture of Ashi’s voluptuous sister and her sensational behind. There was little professional forecast that the one he was stroking and pinching presently would bounce a quarter a quarter of the height Yamame’s huge, bountiful ass could. But there was an area where they could be made to match yet. The colour. Gin hitched the loosened kimono up to Ashi’s waist, grabbed a stern hold of her left butt-cheek in one hand, lifted the other…
… And then brought it down sharply on the other hemisphere. He felt the whole ass ripple through his fingertips and heard Ashi squeal when the impact stuffed her face into his chest. Something stirred beneath Gin’s otherwise gentleman’s heart when the spider-girl turned out to have an amazingly erotic squealing voice. Something else rather below his heart would have woken as well, if it hadn’t been slowly fleshing out ever since Ashi had first climbed atop him.
Her fingernails jabbed between his ribs as she extracted her nose from his chest hair. “Mmh. More,” she whined. “Mooore.”
There was a deafening silence as Gin shut a mental door on his surviving restraint. There should have been a slam and a click, but some mental doors never quite worked the way you wanted them. He disengaged both his palms from the spider-girl’s wiggling ass – then smacked them back down at some force.
Ashi’s hips juddered – then gave out, crash-landing her back astraddle Gin’s own. Her warm, pantiless privates pressed and squished against the hard, oblong bulge in the front of his trousers. The monster imprisoned within throbbed happily at the treatment.
“You—” gasped Ashi, “hfff, deviant— sleazeball— weirdo! Why are you getting hard, nnh, to a blasted youkai?”
“Why is the youkai,” Gin groaned back, “moaning from being spanked?” He punctuated the sentence with a slap on Ashi’s rear. Her crotch ground against his on the recoil, causing the spider-girl to jolt in startled pleasure. “… Bad girl,” he mocked.
“Bad man!” Ashi snapped back, thrusting her hips and riding Gin’s stiff bulge from end to end. In the same motion, she buried her nose in his chest – and inhaled.
There wasn’t a fetish that could have battled and toppled Gin’s monster afterwards, save perhaps a few exotic ones from the glory days of BDSM magazines. A spider-girl getting turned on by the scent of his body was trifle of a kink in contrast. He carried on bullying her bare derriere, now cracking a palm against it, now gripping and spreading the cheeks out, now jostling it back and forth along his hard-on. He had half a mind to yank his pants down and let Ashi’s slit flirt with his monster directly, but the continuous sounds of aroused helplessness pouring from her mouth kept his hands occupied at her rear.
The air beneath the blanket grew steamy, thickening with each horny gasp and strangled exclamation. There was another scent gelling beneath that of Gin’s well-used sheets: the sharp tang of a youkai girl in a certain kind of distress. Cautiously, he quit manhandling Ashi’s slight hips, finding out in the process that the spider-girl was perfectly capable – and willing – to grind herself on Gin’s tent-inside-the-tent quite on her own. Her naked legs strained around his flanks, and her breathing winded even higher, but there she was. An earth spider – a terror from the Underworld – humping his erection through his clothes and twitching fitfully from the sensation.
It was the straw that broke the courier’s back. Or, as it were, it was the straw that didn’t break his back, because Gin had no trouble carjacking his hips up, Ashi and all, in order to remove that final barrier after all.
The spider-girl caught the manoeuvre by the wrist. That was to say, Gin’s. “What, nnf… What are you doing, gin man?”
The courier swallowed. “… Getting my dick out.”
“Why are you getting your dick out?” Ashi wanted to know.
“I…” He hesitated. “It’d feel better if… well, rather than ruining my pants…”
“I thought we weren’t going to have sex?”
Gin unlatched his jaw to reassure the concerned youkai girl of his purest intentions regardless of how hard he was down below, but for the overlate recognition that they’d never explicitly committed to not having sex. There’d been exhortation on the prospect of tongue-and-mouth action, a length of hemming and a bunch of hawing, but never a thing on it being the be-all-end-all of their private “breather.” That thread of potential had been passed over in silence, and now, it appeared, rested loosely in his and Ashi’s hands.
And Ashi knew just what was done to loose threads. They were plucked. In this case, together with Gin’s pants, which she pulled down sharply halfway to his knees.
His monster sprang free, full of vim and damp with sweat, slapping the spider-girl’s belly upon exit. Ashi let it enjoy three beats of latitude before she drove its owner back flat on the bed and pinned it under her slit. Her slick, well-warmed-up labia spread under her weight, all but hugging around the bottom of his shaft, and Gin couldn’t resist urging them into a trip up his rigid length. Ashi hissed her surprised relish when the head of his dick parted her swollen lips and poked her stiff clitoris. Not about to give up on the stimulation, the spider-girl tweaked her hips, making it sure that, when the courier pushed them back, her sensitive little nub scraped along his entire underside. When the backstroke did happen, Gin felt her leave her honey all across his raring manhood. He could but speculate the soggy state his trousers were in.
Ashi jogged herself up to a sit, lifting the blanket and its shroud of darkness together with. It spilled down her back and off to the side to unveil a careless, horny mess of a girl: black hairs stuck all over her face, clothes split down the middle, her nude, hairless treasure spooning the base of his rather hairier manhood. Her unfastened kimono had slipped off of one of her shoulders, baring a small, cheerfully perky breast, tipped with a dark, obscenely puffy nipple. It put Gin in a fantasy of flicking it viciously in between sucking on it like a piece of hard candy.
She wasn’t in any way beautiful. The thought was a lash across his endorphin-addled brain, but it was a lash made of truth. The earth spider self-styled Ashi wasn’t as busty as sister Ichirin, as charming as lady Akyuu, or as down-to-earth sexy as her blond sister. She looked childish, even a shade ridiculous, with her face streaked with black locks; her motions had been earnest, yet clumsy; and her deference to Gin’s cues in all except the simple act of undressing spoke fluently of a lack of experience no amount of wit could cover up for. Here was a minor youkai who wouldn’t make a footnote in Gensokyo’s chronicles, unless the chronicles were Adult Only and penned by someone of tantamount unimportance, such as a measly courier named Gin Akamatsu.
And it was this, perhaps, what had made her so attractive. She was plain, unheard of, with no notoriety to impress or awe you beforehand, girded only with a clever mouth and an almost communicable absence of misgivings. Somebody who’d worked with you from the ground up. A girl you would grudgingly share a cup and a bed with after the boyhood dreams of bunking down with the Hakurei, marrying miss Keine of the history school or having a regular romance with the eldest daughter of the Hieda had turned out to be just that – dreams.
Gin hadn’t grown entirely out of those salad days yet, but if this trial run with Ashi was anything indicative, maybe he wouldn’t need so many cushions for when he started banging his head on reality’s low doorframes.
The shabby spider-girl didn’t stick out her meagre bust or preen herself enticingly as he gave her this extended once-over. Oddity of oddities, the lack of a reaction he could’ve read set his heart to pounding instead. He struggled to furnish it in words.
“… You’re cute, do you know that?”
Ashi looked down, unflurried. “… And you’re thick. And curved. Did you know that?”
The courier spat a laugh. “At least I’m not crooked.”
“Yes, yes, right,” she muttered, perhaps in an effort not to let her amateurism show. “… Well. What now?”
The question hadn’t been meant to choke Gin up, but somehow it did. It’d been easy to fixate on Ashi’s mouth when that had been the only part of her egging him on, but the previous minutes had yielded, what some called, a whole ‘nother notion.
( ) Then again, if she’d liked his smell up there, she would love how he smelled down there. ( ) On the flip side, it was important to learn where and how half-youkai babies were made.
Hello, writer’s skeleton here. Since I’m getting worked to my bone by the Nov-Dec explosion in business, I’ll call the vote here and ask you for a bit of feedback until my meat’s been granted enough rest to go back to the plotton fields.
The question is simple, and it stands as this: do you feel like I skimp out on physical description in the “sensitive” parts? And if so, how nonconductive is this to the overall experience? It’s something that’s been knocking about my skull – but then, I’ve also been told that I in fact go too hard for the purely-physical imaging. I don’t mind pushing it either way, but I’d prefer someone else gave the first push.
Also, to all of you who didn’t bail out of the OC-on-OC nonsense despite me giving you no fewer than two discreet chances… I hope you’re god damn proud of yourselves.
I actually really like the way you do your descriptions, but that might just be me enjoying your writing style as a whole because I like your non-porn as well. The only thing I can think of that you could do some more of is describing facial expressions, which I've found is pretty arousing if done right, but I'm not sure if that's just me being weird.
Also if you didn't want us to vote for your OCs then you shouldn't have made them so damn likable
While I didn't jerk off to it or anything, your Marisa story was written so well that it nearly drove me crazy. You seriously have a way with words that makes practically anything come together in a perfect cocktail of lewd and detailed. I have no doubts it sould extend to any other stuff you write, even if it was something entirely serious.
So in short: No, I think you describe everything in the sensitive scenes in just the perfect amount of detail to throw my imagination into overdrive. Never stop doing what you're doing.
(X) Then again, if she’d liked his smell up there, she would love how he smelled down there.
A whole ‘nother notion that wouldn’t filter through his congruity functions, even if her bare, little youkai was primed and ready to swallow his not-so-little, hairy human. Ashi’s natural lubricant coating its bottom, together with the lewd smooch she’d given to its tip, told Gin’s dick she would more than gladly ease the ancient interracial tensions inside her body, ending them, if not in peace, then in a place where seeds of peace could conceivably be planted. And even though said tip protruded well above the spider-girl’s bellybutton, it didn’t doubt for one throb that Ashi’s diligent kitty would still do her best.
But that was Gin’s dick, and it and Gin had that damn understanding… At least, this was how the dick tempered its enthusiasm. What Gin thought was, dolefully, Why do I want to pork girls it’ll never pan out with?
The spider-girl’s query dispensed with further temptations of unsafe, womb-deep diplomacy. The courier chaperoned his eyes upward Ashi’s slovenly figure – from the area between her slender thighs, where his dick was, up to her tousled face, where it ought to have been. There was something else busying her lips in substitute: a wry quirk that, while cocky enough, told of a world of hidden restlessness. It lent itself to the slightly askance cant of her head, the set of her shoulders, and the grabby, yearning way her palms stroked Gin’s abdomen, painting a not-so-still life of a girl who craved to do many, many things, yet hadn’t quite resolved how appropriate (or viable) they were.
In a first of his so far leisurely life, Gin wished for the workday to have more hours in it.
“You are aware—” he said, by way of nothing minus it confused him, “—that my name is just ‘Gin?’”
For once inside this cosmic cycle, Ashi’s expression turned sincerely bewildered. “… It is?”
“Uh. Ye—Yeah?” He’d briefly distrusted himself, but a quick scan of his more and less distant past reaffirmed it. “It’s Gin. Gin Akamatsu. With the… er, with you, at the moment. I’d reckoned I’d introduced myself.” A pause squeezed into the space between his brain and his tongue. “… So, hold on. Why’ve you been calling me ‘Ginman,’ again?”
“It’s what you were drinking when I first met you and your bunch,” the spider-girl reminded. “You were the one with the gin. Thus, gin man.”
“That,” opined Gin, who’d never countenanced before he’d been living in the same town as ale man, sours man and even passing-this-round-but-will-join-back-in-the-next man, “is enormously silly.”
“Names and I get on awfully,” confessed Ashi. “I try to fill in for them, so they don’t get hurt, and they leave me well alone. It’s an arrangement.”
“You can hurt mine. Heavens know I have.”
Ashi sighed. “… Gin?” she tried.
It didn’t hurt. But the innocence beneath the spider-girl’s timid attempt punched Gin’s cavemen wide awake. It could’ve been the fortnight’s dry spell; it could’ve been the titillation poured down his pants since morning; Gin knew but that he suddenly wished to roll the dainty youkai over and see how deep his human pluck would take him. That he didn’t and merely continued to molest her robust, little ass spoke perhaps to the same mental aerobics which had so disenchanted sister Ichirin; though, if regret came knocking about him not taking Ashi down the road to procreation town, then Gin had an “at least” to shoo it away forthcoming. It might make heavy weather of it, but second thoughts often did, going so far up into the clouds that they tore the silver lining.
Grunting appreciatively of her mastery over his name, Gin seized a handful of the spider-girl’s butt to usher her back atop his slippery, erect monster. Ashi’s fingers curled into diminutive hooks as her slick petals were spread and hauled up the monster’s ridged underbelly. He let them skid to a rest half-wrapped around the head which, at any other date, they might have had to stretch wide and work very hard to accommodate. Her stiff, pink button was squished between its hood and Gin’s swollen glans, seeming rather happy in the circumstance. He wondered how it would like being mashed into his groin while he sheathed himself balls-deep inside the spider-girl’s tight belly. He contemplated whether she could fit all of him in the first place. He pictured her giving her stubborn best to do so despite the adversity.
That, however, was a realm of ambitions, not the ongoing bout. This was to be fought in a different region of Ashi’s bodily geography. Gin slid his general’s gaze up the battlefield of the spider-girl’s blowsy, disarrayed front, over the indecently swollen nipple, until the part of her anatomy pledged to chastening his monster. The tip of Ashi’s tongue was stuck nervously between her lips, as if she was anticipating another tour of Gin’s hard, rugged length. Or, imagination supplied, giving it a tour of a certain warm, cosy hideaway.
He gave her the former, all the while cheating on it in his head with the latter.
“… This is fun,” he asked upon the next stop, “isn’t it? Snuggling it like this?”
“Mm,” Ashi murmured in reply. “Yup. It feels nice. Nnh.”
“Uh-huh. I believe we had an appointment, though?”
Saying so, he towed the spider-girl’s hips a tad bit onward, so that the head of his monster edged ever-so-closer to her eager maidenhood. Ashi waived all claims to reluctance, enjoying the lewd skinship and the sensations it brought upon her slight, responsive body. She tensed when his glans prodded her slimy entrance – then stilled all over, those inhuman, carmine eyes boring into Gin’s, defying him to thrust in and rob her of that final innocence.
“… We did?” she said, mock-absently. “I don’t recall.”
Gin risked a smirk and a wicked tone. “Me and that quick mouth of yours did, missy.”
Ashi issued the unflattering sound that passed for a laugh among those short of patience. “You’ve gotten me this near to mating with you,” she complained, nudging him with her hips, “and now you say you want my mouth, mister?”
If we had a night to ourselves, stipulated the mister’s conscience; if I had a drink in me and hadn’t a not-date with the young mistress later… then I would show you “mating.” Out loud, he unchained his best diplomatist. “That’s the agreement we had, wasn’t it? That I’d bolt the door and teach you how to eat a man’s monster?”
Any hope he’d had of the phrase flustering Ashi on a comeback was let down when she pinned him instead under a ravenous glare. “Yes,” she admitted. “But.”
“But it was,” argued the courier. “All right, another take. You saw your sister; you saw how much fun she was having. You’ll love it too. Trust me.”
There was a shared and not at all unwitting lull in the negotiations as they both reimmersed themselves in the messy, almost pornographic blowjob the voluptuous Yamame had been giving to her lover’s lucky tool.
Ashi, the smaller, younger earth spider, re-emerged first, speaking with equal parts insecurity and accusation, “… And will you love it, Gin?”
“That,” Gin supposed, moderately ungently, “weighs entirely on you, Ashi.”
Some battles were won with great casualties, some – with acceptable ones. Ashi’s indignation melted from her face, and Gin hadn’t wide enough of a window to count his ahead the spider-girl hiked herself up onto her knees.
Their flirting privates divorced with a wet, good-bye kiss, strings of tacky arousal stretching between them: a testament to how politics had trumped preference in this war. The gratifying weight of her slim body, which hadn’t been that acute before, now became a prick in Gin’s side as Ashi pointedly removed it. Only the spider-girl’s consequent climb down his naked front and the straddling of one of his legs managed to divert the second thoughts. Ashi arrived at the monster’s humid lair, pride and butterflies vying for control over her flushed, hair-stuck face.
Imitation being the sterling form of jealousy, the petite earth spider then mirrored her sleazy sister, burying her greedy nose in the pubes at the root of Gin’s obliging monster.
A rush of cool air, pursued by a hot, trembling sigh told the courier that Ashi’s fetishes had found the deep release they’d sought, possibly never knowing, for who-could-say-how long. He levered himself to a half-sit, so that, when she moved on to smell the monstrous shaft itself, he may see how it measured against her face compared to how “dull man” had measured against Yamame’s. He found the proportions treacherously close.
Ashi, eyes intently shut, sniffed her way up the courier’s whole length, flinching whenever her nose or mouth happened to brush the slippery skin. An exception was made at the very top, whereat – on account of the backwards bend that had bullied lady Akyuu’s special place to a squealing orgasm – the poor spider-girl was given no recourse but to press her lips to the nectar-smeared glans for a proper whiff of the tip. Their touch was faint, cool and all but chaste beside that of her easily persuaded lower set, but it caused Gin’s dick to twitch and stand a little taller at attention in response.
It was as Ashi’s now-soiled lips were pulled away that a thought struck him in his somewhat preoccupied hindbrain. He’d been anxious, even edgy, when solicited for sex by his life’s secret fancy, needing the encouragement of her hands to get hard; meanwhile Ashi, whom he’d met but once before and rather apprehended than fancied, had sprung him Tokyo Tower tall even before significant physical ass-istance. What this meant about him… had to be shelved beside such moral conundrums as “Is it fair not to tell your customer you can see her tit?” or “Is it fine to squeeze out and only eat the paste out of a bean paste bun?”
And the reason it had to was because the intrepid Ashi chose to review her impressions of his dick aloud.
“… You stink of me down here,” she disclosed.
That coerced a snigger out of his chest. “Can’t feature why!”
Ashi’s spider eyes flickered between his face and his jiggling hard-on. “… At a jeopardy to my amassed self-esteem,” she said testily, “that wasn’t a con. I kind of like it. We smell… mixable together. Like… wood and flames. If that sounds sensible.”
“That’s—” Gin reined himself an inch short of saying, That is dreadfully romantic, for a youkai. Instead, he volunteered, “That’s a forest fire in the wings.”
The spider-girl took the compliment as it came. “I am not the most mindful spider,” she conceded. Then, she felt a better fire-raising pose was within the reach of possibility. There was a period of rather agreeable wiggling as Ashi shifted atop Gin’s leg, rearranging for her hands to rest on his pelvis, one on either side of his creamy trunk. The nipple of her disrobed breast scraped the rough skin of his thigh, but the negligent scraped had no attention to spare it. She stared at Gin’s endowment, now from a more manageable angle, as if it was some involved, animate puzzle. “… So,” she demanded at length, “pointers?”
“Oh. Oh, yeah.” He unglued his brain from the vision of a youkai playing tinkerer with his dick and glued it to that of Ashi’s mouth tinkering with its tip. “Um. First order of business, and I do not say this because of the earth spider thing… do mind the teeth. It’s three different swear words when something hard and sharp touches down there while it’s up. I might kick, even. Tongue, lips and no nibbling, all right? Swell. Second, saliva is fine. You can drool on it; you can spit on it. It’s all fair sport. There’s no such thing as too much lube, and, well, men are wont to make a mess of it at the end anyway. So…”
Ashi sketched an understanding nod. “Mhm. I get you. Anything else?”
“Well, I’m not a man to press a point, but,” Gin coughed, “eye contact is traditionally polite. Hot as hell, too – but mostly a courtesy. Since you’re a rookie, though… it might be well that you concentrate on the no-teeth part. Hmm? Hint, hint.”
The spider-girl scowled naughtily from behind his hard-on. “… Snake,” she hissed. Then, as though the word had been enough of a critique, she allowed a faint smile to take over. “OK, Gin,” she stressed the name to its monosyllabic limit, “I herewith do take your hint. Any other big no-nos? Other than my teeth?”
“Uh. I guess… the area under the foreskin is a bit tender? So, be careful there. Oh, and—” he realised, “—your hair. It’s gorgeous hair, don’t be mad, but it’s bound to get in the way. Could you maybe truss it up?”
“Sorry,” said Ashi, her exasperated breath sweeping around his girth, “I left my ribbons back at home. Hadn’t considered I might be almost having sex with some pernickety guy later on today.”
“Few of us tend to,” supposed Gin.
“And fewer youkai yet, I’ll assume,” hoped the minor earth spider. “Anyway. No. I couldn’t maybe truss it up. Hold it yourself if it’s such a problem.”
The courier blinked. “… Can I?”
“Yes. Go ahead. I don’t have teeth in my hair.”
And, with a quite unmanly quiver in his hands, Gin did. He gingerly gathered the long, black strands from the tame earth spider’s face and ears to grip them in a crude ponytail at the back of her small head.
And there it was. Another not-so-accidental re-enactment of the scene that had begun it all. Ashi played the part of her blond sister by tweaking her head – and wresting down the involuntary smile that crept out onto her lips. All told, even if Gin wasn’t applying any pressure, holding the spider-girl hostage to his dick was a kick of adrenalin to his brain. A rogue fantasy of treating lady Akyuu to the same ignominy managed to burn through his machismo-fuelled thoughts, before it occurred to him lady Akyuu would’ve had him clipped to half-size if he was to be as rough with her hair as he was now being with that of Ashi.
Ashi, who, in contrast, couldn’t be giddier about being treated roughly if she was wearing a leash and a choker.
Gin, himself choked up by the sight, swallowed down his bubbling nervousness. “… Ashi?”
A thick, throaty sigh was the spider-girl’s reply. “… Yaah?”
He reached with his spare hand and forcefully cupped one of her cheeks. “… You’re a good girl, aren’t you?”
There was a whirl of emotions skirmishing behind Ashi’s eyes: the youkai’s pride swashbuckling with selfishness and swatting at curiosity, while arousal watered the entire battleground into a swampy mire. It took Gin prying her pastel lips apart with his thumb for a winner to float up victorious.
“… This once,” she mumbled, and it absolutely wasn’t just this once, not if she could help it and he could find the time to spank and manhandle her again.
“Then,” said the courier, the time on hand slowly dwindling in supply, “be a better girl and show me what you learned from peeping on your sister.”
And the earth spider named Ashi obeyed: opened up her mouth, let Gin guide it above his excited monster, and wrapped her inexperienced lips around its waiting head.
It couldn’t have begun more innocently if Gin had taken a crayon to the spider-girl’s face. A reassuring murmur from above, and her mouth was softly closed on his tip, smothering the peak – not unlike her silky labia had been a sprinkling of erotic minutes earlier. Where, however, those had parted for him with gooey, gleeful yearning, Ashi’s upper lips were of a fairly colder temper. They held Gin’s still-sheathed glans tentatively restrained, while her tongue pecked at and tested the male organ’s texture. It could’ve been called a perverted kiss… if it wasn’t more akin to a rabbit nibbling on a particularly suspect carrot.
Then, though, the unimposing Ashi showed she didn’t acclaim herself as a sister to the sex-bomb Yamame for nothing. The clever, colourless lips of the younger earth spider were folded intimately around the exposed part of Gin’s monster-head and then slowly pushed down his length in a tight, fleshy ring: peeling the foreskin back, stripping the most sensitive part of his dick bare and leaving it at the mercy of Ashi’s amateur blowjob. A faint, unmanly groan strained between his teeth when the spider-girl’s juice-smeared lips bumped over the ridge of his glans and slipped down the stretch of vulnerable skin below. Her warm, supple tongue hugged his underside, guiding him up toward the remaining space inside her mouth.
Fully two-thirds of his overjoyed, pulsing manhood was lost to the wet, sultry heaven sealed beyond her lips before its tip struck the far end and her throat. Ashi made a small, disaffected noise, unhappy with her journey toward Gin’s shaggy crotch being headed off so short. Her tongue flexed and wiggled underneath his raw areas, attempting in great vain to move aside, inadvertently making the dick flex and grow even harder. Gin sensed the spider-girl brace to pull him back out, and caught the notion by the makeshift ponytail.
“… Good girls apply a bit of suction when they go up,” he suggested.
Ashi, ever the fervent learner, mumbled affirmatively around his shaft, and he felt the smooth insides of her cheeks close in around his girth. As the wonderful mouth was hauled back up his arched length, he repositioned his spare hand to his base, not keen on the skin sheath getting pulled along and depriving his weakest parts of another date with Ashi’s sucking lips. He wasn’t disappointed, and his loins tensed with rather a threat when the lips snagged the edge of his glans. He tried not to moan – failed – and suppressed it with an oath, another piece of his ego eaten up by the humble youkai spider.
Had he not known already dicks were notorious for their poor timing, Gin would right then have mightily scolded his, because in the same heartbeat the spider-girl’s mouth popped free of his erection, a glob of thick, milky precum pumped out of its tip. Another throb, and another drop followed suit, trickling down the side of Gin’s shaft. Ashi, conspicuously untroubled and nowhere out of breath, watched from a nose-span away as the untimely monster dribbled over itself in anticipation of her love.
“… I was about to say,” she spoke, not deigning to look away, “that it had to be me, since it tastes like rubbish. But…”
Innocent of such graces as waiting for consent, the earth spider stuck out her tongue to drag it up the monster’s precum-stained flank. Gin held it straight, bared, utterly loath to let a clean-up end up just a clean-up. Ashi purred her appreciation, or simply in enjoyment, giving the slovenly hard-on three more slow, full-length strokes. Then, and only then, did she relent – reeled back her tongue – and swallowed the sticky fruits of her work. Her tinny body gave a blissful shudder as they went down.
“… But this,” Ashi finished the thought, “this is bleeding delicious. Hng. The way it clings… Sorry, is this creeping you out? You taste so good, I’d not considered.”
“At the mo’?” Gin wheezed. He did, because he’d not trusted himself to laugh, yet it came out a little funny anyhow, since everyone has their funny soundboard, although some of Gin’s would not be so funny if he was in a hospital bed and dying. He wasn’t now, which was why it was funny. “At the mo’, girl, I want to give you more. And better, too. Fuck.”
A trace of a smile crossed Ashi’s lips, and in more meanings than one, for it betrayed to Gin it had been plainly what Ashi had wished to hear, but hadn’t wanted him to know it. “… That felt nice, then?” she asked, all arch and Ashiness once more. “I mean, given how you’re spilling…”
“Heard about that, then, huh.” Gin leered her down. “You’re an informed little spider, aren’t you?”
“I shan’t dispute my size,” Ashi quipped, still at his neighbour downstairs. “And, yes, I have spoken on some things with my betters. This, though? It’s inference. I get slippery when I think about sex; stands to logic you would, too.”
“Notwithstanding we’re of different sex?” inquired Gin, with academic interest.
Ashi sidestepped the semantic trap. “Why’d that matter? The goal’s to get this thing—” she nudged with her nose at the self-willed erection, “—into my thing, deep as it goes, so you can squirt your stuff into my womb. No? That’s how human women get pregnant. Well, cooperation is one tackle, but suppose I was, say, unwilling, and you absolutely wanted to get me pregnant anyway… That’d come in handy then, too, wouldn’t it?”
Would you like that? would nearly have torn out of Gin’s drying throat, except the senselessness of the question put in it a further plug. A man may never do to a youkai what the youkai hadn’t acquiesced to, precluding a large gohei and, if the youkai within the question happened to be Ashi…
… Then, Gin felt, she would have been wetter than behind a mermaid’s ears the moment he pushed her down and slapped a hand over her mouth. His fist tightened on her hair as he pictured doing her just so, screwing himself up into her drenched little hole while listening to the muffled, blissed-out moans.
“… I believe, missy,” he said with some degree of levelness, “that you speak of crime.”
“Ooh?” taunted Ashi. “And weren’t we, exiled of the Underworld, exempt from Gensokyo’s oh-so-bleeding-dear laws? Never mind, Gin. You haven’t told me, still. Was that nice for you or wasn’t it?”
“Well,” Gin deigned, “between your mouth and your pussy earlier, my endurance is worn a tad thin, but… yeah. That was fucking nice. Go on, please.”
The spider-girl’s brows were, however, squished together into a cute but bewildered snarl. “… My what?”
“Your… Uh. Your pussy? Your down-there. The—”
“My thing,” Ashi cut in. “I know. I meant – that word. What a dumb bleeding word. Why a cat?”
“It’s… cute and fuzzy? And I want to pet it?” Gin guessed. “I haven’t the dimmest; I didn’t put it in the parlance.”
“Mine isn’t fuzzy,” she objected. “Yams’s is; she’s almost as thick down there as you are. She’s got ‘a pussy.’ I don’t.”
Whether the carpet matches the drapes, then, would have been his first concern an hour ago; now, Gin worried about more immediate matters. “What have you got, then?”
“Mm. I ‘unno. What options do I have?”
She waited with his dick while the courier rifled through his lexicon, and – ostensibly for something to do – she took the reddish tip back into her mouth. The tersest reunion with her lips was enough for his monster to fall in love all over again. Gin had more than half a bent to force them down, to bury his whole length in the hot, hungry goodness of the spider-girl’s oral sex… but scented something else in the room’s air beside the sweat and their mingled arousal.
“… Honeypot?” he tried. And, sure as the cock rises in the morning, Ashi propped herself by his naked hips and rewarded him by dropping her mouth down, then dragging it back up his rigid length. “Oh, fffuck,” he groaned when the suction wrung out yet more precum out of his throbbing shaft. “Snatch! Slit!” His hard-on jumped, almost hurting from the sharp stimulation once Ashi gave it two more obliging pumps. “Sex! Cherry! I don’t know…!”
“Mm’hay,” was the spider-girl’s mumbled response, and she gave him a prize of another pair of pitiless strokes. And then, for no reason but the fun of it, she followed with another three. Slurping, lapping up the blend of saliva and fresh dick-lube, she let his trembling, drooling erection to spring out of her mouth with a lewd plop! It stood there, shaking, less than an inch from the face of an earth spider who was fast proving to outpace her human teacher. “Nn. Mm… I like ‘snatch,’ anyhow,” she said, having gulped down the sticky impediment. “It speaks to me. On this note, if you will not mind too much—” she warned with an upward glance, “—I am going to take another stitch from Yams’s book and touch my snatch. I don’t feature I’ve ever been more turned on; I need to buff away some of the edge, or I’ll turn a nutty spider.”
Gin gulped in sympathy. “… I’ll do it,” he proposed. “I’ll finger you while you’re blowing me. OK?”
“O… K,” Ashi agreed after a deliberative moment. “How, though? This position isn’t—”
“Get your ass over here,” he rode her over, perhaps harsher than he’d meant. “Off of me and on the bed. Sideways. Here.” He smacked the mattress next to himself with some urgency. As Ashi obediently rolled off of his lower extremities, he filled in the dead air in the debauchery with a question. “… Your sister was touching herself? I didn’t see anything to the like.”
The younger earth spider made a shameless, if preoccupied, nod. “Mhm. Under that doggy bag robe of hers. When she was on her knees? She must’ve been giving her pussy hell, too. There was a puddle on the floor afterwards. Yanno,” she added, lying down beside him, “I’d bet my left pinkie they would’ve had sex eventually if you’d waited. I would’ve been tickled to see how Yams likes to take it. If she even could,” she scoffed, “what with how big the thing was. Her mouth could take it, at least. Someway.”
And there it was, the window Gin’s dick would’ve beaten him up about every night if he didn’t jump it. He’d have smacked himself for patience, but for that would have made him seem the nutty one. Ashi, anyway, settled with a palm on his stomach and thigh each, with her head in the middle, where the relevant part of him was still glistening from her saliva. The absence of the spider-girl’s weight atop his legs was a tug of disillusionment on his mood, but it was a bargain price to pay for renewed access to her perfect, abusable butt. Gin peeled away its kimono cover – clapped it viciously – then gripped the reddening cheek.
Ashi squealed, eyes squeezing shut, her back arching in rogue, perverse joy. A small, blissful sigh followed, ruffling the hairs on his crotch. We’re two peas in a sex pod, Gin reflected, spanking the other half of her ass for balance. The spider-girl’s rear rose on her knees, and he seized the opportunity, tipping it unceremoniously on its side. Ashi’s modest thighs were no bulwark against his hand, even spreading in defeat once his long fingers found her hairless snatch. It proved so wet and slippery, he only had to slide his middle finger up the cleft for her hole to entrap and swallow it up to the second knuckle. Gin pushed in the rest of it, exploring as much as he dared of the youkai’s inhuman vagina.
It proved frighteningly un-monstrous. Intensely hot, fleecy goodness pressed in on his finger from every angle, not unlike the inside of lady Akyuu’s pussy (hers had had fuzz, therefore, apparently, it had been a pussy); Ashi’s walls, however, had a glassy smoothness to their creases that Gin’s hormone-drunk brain associated, in the general drought of higher function, with a lack of wear. For an irrational moment, he feared that a stint with his coarse, curving manhood might spoil her precious place forever; only then, he remembered what the petite girl he was fingering was… as well as that earth spiders were wrought of sturdier stuff than to be ruined by even the roughest session of G-spot-ramming sex in the speedbump position.
And it was with that image-slash-future-plan uppermost on his mind that Gin curled his adventurous middle finger – and scraped it down the front of the spider-girl’s smooth, untouched vagina. It could’ve been the experience he’d gotten from lady Akyuu; it could’ve been the youkai’s heightened sensitivity, but almost at once, Ashi’s small, compact body went taut as a bowstring as the tip of his finger stumbled upon the same, secret spot that had made a noblewoman moan like a horny peasant girl. The latter had all but to be some universal standard, because even an earth spider sounded little different once Gin gave the special place another prod. Ashi’s pristine insides wrung around his finger, as though trying to milk it, and her pearly thighs clamped down tight around his wrist. Whether they had done so to restrain it… or to keep the finger inside… was the thighs’ untold mystery.
Out of the corner of his focus, Gin sensed the youkai’s head edging up to exact revenge on his exposed member. He wrenched it back by the trapped hair, driving the thumb of his dirtier hand under her clitoris as punishment.
Ashi twitched, whined – then turned her chin up at him to glare. “Nnghhh, you… Let me, you prick—”
Gin gave her a torturer’s smile. “No.”
It was nearly a plea.
“Because,” he declared, rubbing her sensitive button by way of discipline, “you haven’t heard how your sister did it. And you want to do it the same way, yes?”
Her nails pinched his thigh as he bullied her wet snatch both inside and out. “Nff… Fine, you… Yes, good, I want to—!”
“Then you’ll use your throat.” He relaxed his fingers enough to give her a respite and a chance to absorb the idea. “… Well? Will you be a good girl?”
Ashi eyed his fat, curving penis, breathing in sputters. “My… throat?” she asked, her voice weak. “You mean… swallow it?”
“More or less. We’ll slide it in your mouth, far as it’ll go – except, we’ll keep going. Until everything’s inside. I’ll help you along.”
“And that’s how Yams…” Ashi left it hanging.
“Yes,” Gin cut it down. “And she did it like an expert.”
Ashi stared at the rugged monster which only a fellow monster could love and decided herself just that. And, to accompany the resolution, she inched her mouth closer the brutish head. “… OK,” she gave in. “Let’s.”
“You’re the best girl,” cooed Gin, screwing his waist sideways for a straighter angle at Ashi’s mouth.
And then, he pushed down on her head, until those cheeky lips were once again wrapped around his bare glans.
All touchy-feely and familiar now, Ashi’s mouth travelled on down the monster’s sloping length, no bump or vein given a pass in the slippery rush toward her throat. The softness and heat of her loving mouth hadn’t even had the time to register in Gin’s mind before his dick was once more at that critical depth where a third its span remained lonely, while the top two were being drowned in warm, slippery pleasure. A depth at which its swollen tip was wedged between the spider-girl’s clenched tonsils. Gin loosed a vulgar groan at the combined sight and sensation of such a cute creature sucking him off, and he returned part of the favour by poking the precious spot on the inside of her belly.
Later, with the advantages of hindsight and a lighter load between his legs, he would challenge the wisdom of fingering a youkai with her teeth so near to your meat. Now, with her tight snatch making love to his finger and the no-looser mouth doing the same to his throbbing cock, it only drove him to greater boldness.
“… OK, missy,” he cooed over the thrill of domination. “Try to ease up, will you?”
Ashi, being where she was – and, more importantly, how she was – volunteered no reply, although Gin felt her tense in readiness. Without a further word, and with almost forced gentleness, he pressed down on the back of her captured head.
There was a small gagging sound and but the minutest resistance before the tip of his hard-on slipped past the ring of Ashi’s throat and into her smooth gullet. Gin thrust on, the final third of his shaft at last getting to know the spider-girl’s diligent lips, while the upper end was choked and strangled in the tightness of her throat. Ashi put up no struggle to the end, not even when Gin’s monster bottomed out and her face was smushed into his groin and her nose buried in his sweaty pubes. The mind-numbing pleasure of his cock being encased from end to end in warm snugness caused the courier’s legs to draw in and said cock to trash like a snared animal in its fleshy prison. In a last-and-only-ditch available of their sexual back-and-forth, he extracted his finger from between Ashi’s clinging labia and began to flick it left and right over her stiff clit.
Ashi squirmed, her own legs curling up, but refused to obey any instinct that would have removed her from the vicinity of Gin’s steamy crotch.
It was he, at length, who had to imitate the other earth spider-lover and tug suggestively at Ashi’s bunched hair. The younger spider-girl yielded with even less decorum: slowly withdrawing the cock, first from her throat, then from her mouth, peeling the spit and precum from its entire, rock-hard length with airtight lips. It helped none against gluey strings of it bridging the gap once it snapped free, nor for Ashi breathing in fast and deep in its wake.
There was only one question to answer when their eyes met: he – wide-mouthed and out of scruples, and she – flushed red and out of control.
“How—?” Ashi gasped out.
“Amazing,” Gin wheezed back at once.
“You too. And don’t stop. I’m super close.”
“Great. Then let’s?”
“Let’s. I fucking love you.”
There’d been something off about that very final exchange, but Gin couldn’t place the mistake before Ashi’s lips were once again massaging his shaft. He scrunched up all the faculties that hadn’t been sucked out by her frighteningly quick-learning mouth and traced his fingers under her drenched snatch. Having felt out the sheltered entrance, he slid two of them – middle and ring – in. Her innocent walls happily hugged around the intruders, up until said intruders homed in on her G-spot and began giving it the teasing of a lifetime. Then, they hugged even tighter.
Meanwhile, Gin’s manhood was being likewise tormented inside Ashi’s mouth. The horny spider-girl, no longer needing the enticement of his fist around her hair, pumped her head up and down, up and down, each motion first plunging him into, then plucking him out of her throat. Whenever the ridge of his glans was snagged on Ashi’s tonsils, he groaned; whenever it left her airways passable, Ashi huffed and squeaked from the rough fingering down below. And then, whenever Gin slacked in providing ample reaction, she would dive all the way down his length to fellate the root of his dick until he pulled her back up by force among obscene noise. For a few sucking rounds, the courier imagined the blond Yamame in her younger sister’s place, working his cock with her large, plump tits swinging below; for another handful, lady Akyuu – with her prim, flowery kimono skinned down to her waist. And lastly, he featured the petite Ashi, face-down in the bedsheets, her long, black hair spilled all around, and begging him not to cum inside while he pounded her relentlessly from behind.
One of these left him a weaker man than the others, and not only because of the gross imbalance in probability. A larger share of it, in fact, was its subject suddenly wrenching her mouth off of his thumping cock, foamy drool dribbling down it and her chin, to give him a misty-eyed gaze.
“Gin,” she whined, “I’m—”
“About to cum?” he guessed.
“Yesss,” Ashi moaned in response. “Yes, yes, yeeeesss—”
“Then be a good girl—” snapped the courier, “—and open up.”
Ashi did. And Gin used of her naivete to slam his cock back down her throat.
At the same time, he hooked his fingers inside her, digging them into her shuddering walls and at the orgasm-inducing spot evidently shared between women of human- and youkai-kind. Ashi clenched, both above and below, and gurgled around the throbbing obstruction in her mouth. Gin set his jaw as the spider-girl began to twitch in her climax, and he jerked her head halfway up his cock.
And then, having thrown loose all restraints, he rammed himself balls-deep into the cumming girl’s throat.
A fortnight of moderation and false hopes, plus half a day of unsubtle titillation, poured down Ashi’s smooth gullet: gush after gush after gush of hot, potent semen that the courier had looked forward to releasing inside his lady’s teenage womb, but which was now instead being used to feed an overly curious youkai. And even if mashing her face into his crotch while his cock pulsed and squirted inside her cramped throat was nothing short of jaw-dropping, he could not fend off the worming notion that he should have just fucked and sullied Ashi’s womb instead. She would have done it. And, upon a guilty re-think, so would he. Lady Akyuu notwithstanding.
He'd not finished the thought, or indeed coming, when Ashi’s throat grew too tight for comfort. He warily tugged on her hair until he felt his glans brush past her tonsils, emptied his pathetic, final shot onto the back of her tongue and, at last, pulled his spent, swollen manhood out into the light. Ashi’s head limped sideways onto his lap, his flagging shaft resting across her lips.
Mired still in her own orgasm, the messed-up spider-girl breathed in of its indecent smell, rolled her crimson eyes up at Gin’s and, looking at him straight on, kissed the dick’s dirty underside.
It was the sexiest, most obscene thing that Gin Akamatsu had ever seen, and he felt, in the infinite depths of his masculinity, that he would sooner forget the sight of Yamame’s spectacular, brown-tipped tits than that of her sister’s smiling face right then.
Minutes leaching by neutralised the spider-girl’s paralytic charm and, at the expiry of one, Gin tore himself away from his fellow pervert, with all his dangly bits thankfully still attached.
A moment’s rummaging issued from his sparse, bachelor’s belongings a threadbare old towel, which he dipped in the washbasin before wiping down his hands. Ashi’s mouth had handled the worst of the sticky outcome, leaving his personal clean-up as easy as a few swipes. For the less shipshape spider-girl, however, who had watched him idly from the bed, the towel was dunked again, wrung and, because no amount of stropping could ever hone Gin’s humour, sent sailing at her cute, impassive face. Ashi, too content to swat at the first low-flying joke to come her way, let the towel to make its landfall. Then, at no trivial knock to Gin’s post-coital zen, she climbed up to a proper sit, stripped the half-undone kimono all the way off, peeled the towel from her nose and began unmaking the mess Gin’s fingers had helped to make in her lower quarters.
Not in the least because her bare breasts, with their prominent, champagne-pink nipples, were in any manner absolutely captivating, but rather since his mouth was parched and he needed to draw himself a drink right then, the courier wheeled away and drew himself a drink. And, because for every place in the world where it was after 5 o’clock there was another where it wasn’t, he made it that of boring water. Studying the rippled version of himself in the cup – and boy, did he seem unrippled by recent events beneath the surface – Gin Akamatsu posed the question that would have solved eighty percent of bedroom disagreements if only somebody had asked it on the regular.
“… What do you reckon?”
Ashi didn’t quit rustling behind her reply. “It was easier than I’d assumed.”
“Same,” he agreed. How come? was a bristlier puzzle, with as many legs as it had eyes and a history of eating possibly more than a man’s monster alone. It should’ve been a disconcerting thought, but Gin was altogether past the concert-going age and numb to the idea. Well, everywhere except somewhere, at least. “Was it fun, though?”
“The look on your face was.”
The Gin in the cup scrunched up his brows. It was, admittedly, somewhat funny-looking. “Anything else that was fun?”
The brows shaped a seesaw. “… My dick?”
“The way it twitched and cowered when I touched it,” clarified Ashi. “That was fun, too.”
“Oh.” The seesaw broke down the middle. “That would be funny from an outside viewport. No other funny impressions?”
“No,” said Ashi. “None I could wrap up in words.”
“Right. Any… other kinds?”
“Look, I don’t—” Gin started to say, ahead realising he, in fact, did. “… Was it exciting?” he asked, rapping his fingers on the cup. “Did you like it; did it feel good? Give me something, here.”
“Ah. In that case—” here, Ashi’s tossed the towel at his feet, “—it was the most exciting thing a human has ever made me do, Gin. I liked it. I wish I could’ve tasted more of your stuff, but I get why you’d sooner force-fed it to me. And, yes, your fingers felt very nice inside me. You may even have spoiled my down-there a little. That about what you wanted to hear?”
The Gin under the water couldn’t not look funny at the returned snub. “… Can’t say it wasn’t,” he supposed.
“Next time, though,” cautioned Ashi, “I do not leave until you’ve committed that crime we brought up.”
It was what he had heard, but not what the spider-girl’s words had told him. I want more than fun, was what they’d meant. I want the whole thing. I want to get banged and knocked up, so I can see how my sister systematically gets to feel. It wasn’t an inferiority complex, not quite, rather an unending chase of the unattainable, which was marginally healthier than the more common model, if just as deadly in the end. Then again, Gin thought, what the heck measure was a youkai? He drained the cup’s funny-looking contents, drew another from the drinking water pot beside the stove, and held it out like a shield while approaching the naked Ashi.
In an insidious analogue to his morning dally with lady Akyuu, their fingers touched as he handed over the drink. In a yet more insidious likeness, it made him feel unaccountably hot inside. It didn’t break him out for a foolish grin, but it did make one pound at the inside of his lips, which was the same thing, sans a bar of self-control.
Within that fleeting instant, the courier had a long and time-insensitive reflection. For starters, he liked Ashi. He’d taken to her at once when they’d first met, to an extent where his proudly-styled friends would allege he’d all but monopolised the girl afterwards; he’d liked her enough to grant her entry into his private quarters, which was truthfully more of a singular quarter, and let her spend the night. And then, just to drive it home, he’d liked her enough for said like to silently garrotte wholesome apprehension after she’d revealed what she really was. He’d discreetly ascribed everything to wanting to screw the clever girl in the golden dress after the event, yet sobering up by degrees while chatting well into the wee hours of the morning – omitting skin contact – was empirically not something you did with a clever girl in a golden dress you’d intended no more than to wham, bam and thank you, ma’am.
Why, he knew what Ashi’s least favourite kind of man was, which was more than he might say of lady Akyuu, whom he’d both known for more than half a decade and wham-bammed by now.
He liked the scrawny spider-girl… and, ogling her in the current, kimono-less state, he liked more than her mind. No refractory period could divest Ashi’s body of its sleek, aesthetic appeal. Once she received the cup and lifted it to her mouth in both hands, it was all Gin wanted to do to touch his gaze up the spotless plane of her front. From the utterly nude groin, across the flat stomach that hardly seemed capable of pregnancy, to the peaks of her unripened breasts, there was a girl lady Akyuu could have been if she’d stopped aging two years before and picked up a dislike for outdoors. Ashi hadn’t a third of the overflowing femininity her sister did, sister Ichirin’s slapdash sex-appeal or the young mistress’s subtle naughtiness, but… it was she he was ogling now. At the end of the day, “it’s not what you have; it’s how you use it” applied to more than your wallet and your dick; and Ashi had shown, however briefly, that these girly hips had more in them than their magnitude betrayed. All they needed was a nudge and a little practice.
“… We’re scheduling for a next time, then?” said Gin, correlative to nothing of the above.
Ashi lowered the cup. “Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow,” she conceded, “but if Yams elects to stay here longer, then it’ll be my sisterly responsibility to check in on her again. And if not, dull man’s bound to get us another job up top eventually. You’ll see me around, even if it takes another six bleeding moons.”
“I’m a man in prime,” quipped Gin. “What if I get married in that time?”
“Then,” Ashi replied with blistering indifference, “I’m going to be very put out.”
Somewhere among other things, Ashi must have sucked out some of his marbles, because Then you marry me! was the first retort to float up to his head.
He didn’t get to loose it and lose the spider-girl’s interest forever, since she chose right then to add, “Oh, also, I’ll be paying Yams a visit after this, and I’m categorically telling her who saw her with her tits out. So, there’s something for both of you to hang your minds on when you swing by there again. OK?”
And she’d said it with such blunt candour, as though life was a comedy play and she – merely the stolid prompter, that all at once Gin remembered why he’d poured her drink after drink and none for himself and never once regarded it a waste. She’d been just that fun to listen to. Oh, there were other facets now: that she would look stunning in red lingerie and was potentially great in bed, but it had been that in the main. The casual wit, quips and ease of company. The perfect bedrock for a relationship, if you trusted certain people who had never been in one.
Yet he was but a human, and she – an exiled youkai spider. Already she had bent the edicts by encroaching on the humans’ land; far be it from him, servant of the Hieda for as long as he’d been, to plead ignorant of these laws now. And so was Gin left to feel like a man who’d not only bit off more than he could chew, but would need to show the neckless bottle to the cashier on the way out to boot. It was the sort of thing that ended in a lot of embarrassment for everybody at best and a godless tragedy at worst. The ancient Greeks had all but canonised it. However he viewed it; however he felt or didn’t about his inhuman fling – the bottom line on going steady with cute spider-girls was unambiguous.
It could never, ever work.
And because it couldn’t—
( ) It just, just barely might. Someday. ( ) It was best to do with what already has.
[X]it just, just barely might. Someday. [X]...But it was best to do with what one already has. While people like Rinnosuke prove that Human/Youkai relations are possible in some way, Gin is a courier for the Hieda family, and as such his actions reflect onto one of the most important families in the human village. Add to this that despite Amyuu's demeanour, she would be decidedly displeased by the notion that her favourite slave is dipping his wick elsewhere. On the whole, it wouldn't end well. So, while it could, and very well should happen, it can't. Not for Gin, and not right now.
You guys are overthinking this. OP is just asking if we liked his OC and want to see her again.
Thinking about this logically, AQ40 has definitely had past lovers with the whole reincarnation thing. There's no reason to pursue this impractical celibacy when our main target is basically a time slut.
And because it couldn’t, Gin would give it no excuse for reassertion. As constant dripping wore away the stone, and history forgot the Greeks and their wisdom, and “one more shot and no more” made the alcoholic, it wouldn’t do to remind them they weren’t supposed to do that. Time and inattention were the stealthiest saboteurs known – or, more to the thrust, unknown – to mankind. Gin was simply in on the battle plan.
That didn’t put him above historians, especially not those in silly hats, or, indeed, above “one more shot.” Which was why he trained his sights on Ashi’s unconcerned face.
“… Hey, youkai?” he banged off.
“Hey, human,” was the echoed report. “What’s up?”
“Say. What’s your stance on kissing?”
Ashi’s eyes were narrowed, and the cup – lowered to her nude lap. “… Not combative,” she concluded, eyes re-broadening to their alert size. “I liked it when we last did, if that’s gnawing on your wishbone.”
Gin took a step over the discarded towel. “Yes,” he agreed on both of the sentiments. “That, though? That was a friends’ kiss. On the cheek? I’d do that to one of my buds, had we a bet on.”
The spider-girl craned her neck as he came closer. “Such trust,” she mocked. “… So?”
“So,” said Gin, “I’m debating whether I could kiss you the other way. On the lips – like lovers.”
Jealousy alone prevented him adding, Never mind those’ve already kissed me elsewhere. Ashi gave it an interior debate of her own.
“… As long as it’s like lovers,” she firmly decided, “and you don’t get ideas. I don’t need you chasing me underground. It’s crowded there as-is.”
“That won’t happen,” said Gin, which wasn’t a lie in the technical realms, as said ideas had been gotten already, and he wasn’t about to skip town besides. And then, lying full on, he went on, “I’m not bold enough for a youkai lover, see.”
Ashi made a nasty snicker. “Could’ve bleeding fooled m—”
And he had, because the “me” was stamped right back into her lips, once he grasped her by the chin and pressed to them his own. Ashi’s eyes flew wide, a rust-silver mirror of that morning half a year distant, when Gin had kissed his first earth spider, and the earth spider, gathering from her response, had been first kissed by a human. Ancient customs and girly magazines both prescribed for lovers to shield their eyes when kissing, for reasons of decorum; having observed neither for more than a few motley pages, especially of the latter, Gin indecorously levelled his eyes at Ashi’s, watching them calm, dim, soften and slowly yield over the course of the next ten heartbeats.
After the eleventh – no, twelfth… thirteenth one – he drew their lips apart, as far as he could bring himself, and whispered,
“… Meet me again?”
Ashi’s lashes fluttered an inch before his. “… Already said I would,” she noted back. “Yanno?”
Gin felt a little dumb. “… Right. You did. Uh. Good.”
Then, to sleek over that lapse in manliness, he peeled her bottom lip down with a thumb and kissed her again – more wetly this time. Ashi tensed, eased into it and then – in what was an inordinately innocent first – began to kiss back.
Gin could not envisage it then, though he would by the end of the week, that the soft, relaxed sound she made when kissed could lodge very hard in a man’s memory.
A moderately hushed minute later, he was staking out Ashi’s flushed rear from the bed, while she wrapped herself again in the black-and-red kimono. Sooner than he would have deemed conclusive evidence, she was – sash tied back round her waist, sandals on her feet and poised to leave. Gin stood to walk her to the door, which he fairly could have done from the bed, but heard the clarion call of redundant courtesy.
He grabbed at the doorknob holding the Winter cold at bay – then remembered something else. “Oh. Would you maybe, er, like something of mine? Souvenir?”
Ashi eyed him from under the hastily neatened fringe of black hair. “… What for?” she wondered. When he was slow to reply, she hazarded guesswork. “To stuff my nose in when loneliness strikes? I’m sentimental, Gin, but not that. Couldn’t hide it from my other sisters, either,” she grumbled. “Nosier than I am, those girls. And they’d make me talk, too. So, no – keep your shirts and be my dirty, little secret. OK?”
“I can do that much,” supposed Gin.
“Solid. Oh, on the other hand—” Ashi recalled herself some things that hadn’t been ahead now and dug into a fold of her kimono which turned out to be a pocket – which turned out in turn a bundle of scrunched, black cloth. She shoved it into Gin’s spare hand. “Here. I snagged this after dull man went after you and Yams. Sweet dreams. You can let me out, now.”
Gin’s attention jumped between the gift and its giver, finally deciding on the overall blacker of the two. “… I will see you, though?”
“Yes,” said Ashi.
And because there was nothing to append – no ifs, no buts, no maybes – she didn’t. Gin snorted, gave her a sardonic shake of the head, and pushed the door ajar. A razor made of cold air grazed his bare legs, and Ashi ducked under his arm to skitter down the terrace. He peered out after her long enough to see her vault the stairs’ railing and, for now, out of his life. Then, he shut the door.
In the privacy therefore accorded, Gin Akamatsu cast his attention to the parting gift the minor earth spider had, due doubtless to all the distractions, nearly forgotten. He pinched a hold on a corner of the cloth and let the gravity to do what it did best and unfurl it for him. At once, the courier chortled right involuntarily; for the item now on display, he had seen once before.
It was lace, it was black, and it was Yamame’s voluminous bra.
Ashi had had it right. A summary break could do to a workday the same it could to a world record. Which was to say, make it appear a small thing.
And indeed, the hours intervening Gin pulling on a new pair of trousers, courtesy of Ashi’s hearty excitement, and him clocking off with the Hiedas’ yardman had blown over faster than yesteryear’s Olympics. Within those, the gingered (or, really, black-haired) up runner had dispensed the remaining dresses, returned to the textile makers’ estate and, in a stroke of mercy, been spared the business of Yamame and her huge lover, the intrepid Akari taking on the wheeling and dealing in their stead. He’d scudded by the metalworks tabled by lady Akyuu and exchanged three of the six golden leaves for a sum which left him so fulfilled, it would’ve made an old prophecy blush. And then, lastly-yet-not-leastly, he’d moored for a time at a communal bathhouse to wash his figurative sails and sweep the figurative spiders from his cargo hold.
A refitted HIJMS Gin had thusly sailed on to home port and the Hieda mansion, where the daily enterprises were winding down, and an early Winter evening had coaxed all but the hottest of heads indoors. After banging his together with the yardman’s, Gin had spun the helm around and toward the young mistress’s office, skinning his cap and scarf once out of the cold, passing by retiring maids and scaring one to near operatic registers by figure-skating out from behind a corner on the slippery floor. Wanting further maritime encounters, he’d arrived to lady Akyuu’s papermill – rapped the door – and, upon the customary “Come on in!” had entered the place whence, from atop silken pillows and a no less silken butt, the dainty eldest daughter of the Hieda had conducted the work of dozens.
A space had been cleared on one of the laden tables to accommodate a multi-tiered tea urn, a pair of twin mugs, a candle heater and, to a slight catch in Gin’s resolve, a modest sake box beside an earthenware bottle. He’d overlooked those for then in favour of the one true ornament of the room.
“All done,” he had reported. “Smooth voyage, nothing to muddy your bottom lines. Cashed out, came here. May have startled one of the maids. Smooth otherwise, though.”
Lady Akyuu had smiled, her fountain pen not slowing. “Good job. Sit down; I shall be done in but a moment.”
Gin had, pre-emptively intercepting the spot nearer the alcohol. He’d turned the brown, Michelin Man-like bottle in his hands. “… This for me, young mistress?”
“You are the bigger sake bug in the room, are you not?” Akyuu had returned. “It is. You do do sake, yes?”
He’d plucked the stopper and sniffed at the aromatic contents. “Not in a box, and not the plain variety, not often.”
“Oh, there are flavours to this poison? What a world. No, never mind. This is all I could get on a short notice, Gin. You needn’t force it down on my account, if you should so dread it. Just have tea, instead.”
“That, I didn’t say,” Gin had protested, recorking the bottle. “I do have to say, though: why? I’d reckoned my habits were a fairy in your ointment?”
Lady Akyuu’s expression hadn’t changed and had refused to do so even then. “Might be,” she had suggested, “I want to be your friend?”
And now, another hour behind the stern, Gin Akamatsu thought that a friend who didn’t drink along with you may not spell the end of the civilised world. In particular if said friend was as easy on the eyes and challenging on the wit as Hieda Akyuu. Gin was a man of a sparkly persuasion, especially in the wake of a sparkly drink. He was also, as far as self-assessment went, a good employee – especially today, having concluded one troublesome delivery and one big one without losing his head. And lady Akyuu was a good employer, even if she wasn’t so sparkly – especially today, having spent most of it in a manner to which the phrase plenty of exercise may only be applied in terms of patience, and juggling assignments.
Nevertheless, they had managed to clink a sake box with a teacup precluding expensive accidents and thoroughly doused in gossip the fairy-chasing runner for whom Gin (and others) had to then stand in. And then, lady Akyuu had cracked a joke about boys and fairies* that’d had him choked at first, then caused a bout of merry chortling, after which Gin had remembered why the young mistress could put up with his off-brand humour, let alone endorse it. Hers was simply a painted-over replica.
And so it was, among welling comfort, diminishing sake and lady Akyuu’s royal half-smiles, that Gin posed the question that had fused like soup from the day’s events in the eatery of his worldview.
“This’ll come out a little out of the left field,” he said, admiring the glint of candlelight reflected off of her lovely eyes floral brooch, “but, uh… have you ever wondered why some youkai are drawn to, let’s say, human things?”
Seated close by, at the table’s perpendicular edge, the young noblewoman tucked her hair behind an ear with regal aplomb. “That was no field, Gin,” she noted. “It was your rear.”
“Yes, fair,” granted the courier, smiling against propriety. “Have you, though?”
“Wondered?” repeated lady Akyuu. “No. I have penned a book’s worth on the subject. Conclusive, too.”
“I can’t recall that I’ve read that one.”
“That is because it was a book’s worth, not a book,” she explained, long-sufferingly. “Why, Gin, did you reckon I would publicise something that very well violates Gensokyo’s core tenets? Oh, please.”
Gin blanched. “Whoa, there.”
Lady Akyuu gave him her most scalding look. Which, while it did start a fire, may have missed its mark. “You think me dramatizing. I am, admittedly. As a special person, I am giving you this one special grace. It is thin ice from here further.”
“… Special how?” asked the courier, who felt everything except.
“Special by dint of your origin,” the young Gensokyan noble explained. “Your upbringing. Your projections. Special is the least those make you, Gin; dangerous might fain be another take. Although it does you credit that you have assimilated to the farthest of your extents. None of this is important, however. What is, is what Gensokyo is. Not as a country, not as a place – but a device. You do know this, yes, Gin?”
“It’s, uh,” he volunteered, “sort of a nature preserve. Isn’t it?”
“I fear the term eludes me,” complained lady Akyuu. “Please expound?”
“Sorry, reckon it’s more of a modernity thing, huh. Well, it’s a place—” he stretched his dictionary, “—or a tract of land, maybe, purposely left unaltered, so that rare or endangered species can thrive there. A sort of no-interference zone.”
“Then yes, Gensokyo would have been something to the effect. The major departure, I judge, being that our endangered species require more than seclusion to thrive. Cut a god away from its adherents, and it shall surely die; do the same to a youkai and its victims, and it shall fall into oblivion. Our presence here, our shared fears and beliefs, are imperative for Gensokyo’s continued function. We are their victims and adherents, Gin, everyone here: me, the town, even you in some reduced measure. Just, please, do not ask me why we labour to preserve what we do,” sighed lady Akyuu. “It is a moralistic debate I have had too many times and always too sober. The repetition makes my head ache.”
Gin took mercy, asking instead, “… Why is my input ‘reduced?’”
“For the misfortunate quirk of yours, Gin,” the young mistress graciously replied, “that you are conditioned to see any person-seeming creature as a person. In the Outside World, that might have been a virtue, perhaps even the norm; here, what we are comes before who or what we are like. The cardinal distinction between human, youkai and god is what keeps Gensokyo’s axles greased and its horses fed. You, however, I am convinced, would exchange bad quips with anyone with one ear and a mouth.”
“I’ll have you know,” said Gin, refilling his sake box with, what some would call, a casual flair, “I’ve run from bad youkai before.”
“Yes—” lady Akyuu rolled her gorgeous eyes, “—because, contrary to what you strongly strive to communicate, including to my father, you are not a carefree idiot. The fact of the matter stands, however, that you would sooner speak with said bad youkai than run away screaming if they should but give you the prompt they would listen. And that, Gin, is more dangerous for them in the long run – if you’ll pardon – than it is for you.”
Once again, Gin re-plugged the bottle and gazed into the lacquered and – if he had an anonymous poll to fill – somewhat inconvenient-to-drink-from box. “… OK,” he composed his argument, “I get this much: that both youkai and gods depend on human presence. And, once removed from it, they tend to, uh… give reality the pop? Or reality gives them the pop. Gods can slide the rules, though; I was here for mistress Kanako’s, o-hallowed-be-her-name, grand shindig around the geyser and the ropeway. And, if I have my Hieda Akyuu straight, she used to be a goddess of warfare…?”
“Or wind, or agriculture,” corrected the young mistress, “or yes, warfare, depending on whom else you consult. No mention of engineering, however; I will sign below that much.”
“She is that now,” observed Gin.
“Amazingly, yes. And that is the secret of her success: since she has persuaded us she is a god of contraptions as well, her grip on that domain has only grown stronger. She has evidenced herself to be a god of machinery, and therefore we believed her the god of machinery, and therefore she has become a god of machinery. Which, however, do you imagine came first: our faith in lady Kanako, who holds sway over the Kappa and their gears and pistons… or a waning, ancient goddess, possessed of enough left over will to seek out a more attractive venue? You needn’t answer; Gensokyo is littered with the dying echoes of gods too stubborn to change. And so, in their impermeability, they fade away…”
“Gods can repurpose then, demonstrably,” agreed Gin, “but weren’t we talking about youkai?”
To which lady Akyuu responded with erudite speed. “Ah, but are youkai not much the same? We believe in the fear of the inscrutable, and therefore youkai such as the Nue are born. We fancy for tools to come alive and reward or punish their owners, and therefore tsukumogami march in the night. We imagine cute, fuzzy creatures shouting our words back at us in mountains and valleys, and therefore we have such wonders as the Myouren temple’s Kyouko.”
“We believe in goat-horned, drunkard giants,” joined in Gin, “and so there are Oni. We believe in monstrous spiders… and so there are tsuchigumo.”
“About so,” granted lady Akyuu, who seemed more and more to be wearing an invisible magister’s hat with every sentence. “Those last two are a whit more complex; however, you do have the basic of it correct. And yet, I ask you: which was there first? Our dreams of tools awakening – or said tools awakening in fact? Our encounter of those big, deadly spiders – or the fear of such monstrosities burrowing in the bowels of the earth? Or, indeed, the echoes, which we know now are but a quirk of the sound – or those adorable creatures we had invented to explain the phenomenon away? Hmm?”
Gin took a long, studious sip of the biting sake ahead spouting, “OK, I get it, point, blade and hilt. Our beliefs shape youkai as well as gods. And me,” he guessed on, “I’m the firebrand bastard who’d pass over their youkainess and turn them into people. Which, as you and I can attest, is terminal. OK. Why do some of them drop by for clothes and groceries, then? Isn’t that self-destructive too?”
The blunt ignorance of the question couldn’t have stumped a tree, let alone the young noblewoman. “Yes and no,” she said with scholarly glee. “Yes for those youkai who may be fledgling or weakened. No for those who already have a firm foothold in the world. A weak youkai pretending at being human risks that act impressing over its core domain. A well-recognised, older youkai, however…”
“It’d be too rooted,” figured Gin, “for one odd act to change the widespread belief. Huh.”
“Yes! And this is why, coincidentally,” lady Akyuu went on, “your humanitarian approach is no threat to Gensokyo at large. As long as the town believes – and believe me, it does believe – Gensokyo’s inhabitants persevere. And then, there are youkai who have found sustenance elsewhere. Those in the Myouren temple, for example, will act plenty human toward you at no overt expense to their wellbeing. Those in the Underworld, to which you have referred, will not; but, they have survived ages in isolation, implying some elsewise source. Whatever lady Kanako’s flowerpot girl preaches in the market square, the Human Village is not the be-all-end-all for Gensokyo’s supernatural. It is merely the richest of diets.”
Gin rapped his fingers on the edge of the pinewood box. “You haven’t addressed my question.”
And at that, lady Akyuu smirked as only lady Akyuu could. The effect was as though she’d stuck a cold hand under your shirt. “Astute,” she praised; “yet I have addressed the skirts of it, which you should do first to any philosophical question. Or a town. Or a woman, where manners permit. Anyway. The reason youkai seek out traditionally human thrills may, in fact, be twofold. For starters, there is a bit of a ‘firebrand idiot,’ as you named it, in every one of us. When something has been around enough, we tend to ascribe to it certain personable qualities. A pet you talk to, a tool that spitefully breaks at the worst of moments, a painting whose eyes follow you around… The awfully technical term is ‘anthropomorphism.’ And so, those youkai who have withstood our scrutiny and established themselves in our minds become targets to take such qualities on. We cause them to yearn for said thrills, Gin. And it is we who’ve prevailed upon them they may want personalities above those dictated by what they are as youkai. To be more like us.”
“That’s starters,” said Gin. “And enders?”
Now the young noblewoman looked as though someone had stuck a hand – quite a warm one, too – down between her shoulder blades. “Simply, Gin,” she said, glad to have a student so fast on the uptake, “perhaps it is so that the, mm… pastimes we devise for ourselves are just that fun? There are so many ways in which we, humans, kill time; and youkai, well, what else do they have but time? Some of those ways, I have come to understand, are all but bound to click, species notwithstanding… What are you thinking?”
Gin Akamatsu, who had been attempting in vain to swirl his drink ever since his lady’s drawled “pastimes” and finding the rectangular vessel unconducive, was, as a matter of fact, thinking. He was thinking that he would have liked the metaphorical hand to have been rather more literal; moreover, however, he was thinking that the whole lecture had a smack to it that, if you sniffed close, was definitely not of political correctness. A simple Gensokyan lifestyle, such as his, was a careful balance of lower body strength and ignorance; and lady Akyuu’s revolutionary words came very close putting him on the spot for personal illumination. Which would’ve imbalanced things something rotten without a heavy shade.
But he’d broached the subject himself. And when you broached a drink, you best drank it before it went flat. Gin Akamatsu drew himself up, nodding appreciatively, and held up a hand, unfortunately not against lady Akyuu’s back. “Thinking,” he said, “that I’ve heard enough. I’m a messenger, young mistress – not a youkai ecologist. Anything more in-depth and I’ll be so far at sea, you’ll have to scrape barnacles off my bottom afterwards.”
The courier and the young scholar woman stared at each other with what the latter might call “a mild disagreement.” At last, lady Akyuu relented, “You know, Gin, sometimes you lie so poorly, I wonder if you go to sleep upright like a horse. Just tell me this, and I’ll leave you dry: what brought this on? I’ll be the first to grant you haven’t taken an interest in Gensokyo’s ecology deeply or often, perhaps to your betterment. To what do we owe this rogue occurrence?”
And here came the potentially deadly bit that sometimes gathered as white residue at the bottom of a barrel. Gin nudged his liver awake and drank deep.
“Well I… I met a youkai today,” he confessed.
Lady Akyuu could have been a youkai herself, possibly of the satori variety, for the big, smug smile tugging at her cheeks. “In work hours? Why, Gin, you rogue! No, but I kid. From your tone, I surmise you do not mean Hijiri’s flock?”
Gin chugged from the sake box, hoping against hope one poison negated another. He breathed out the bitter fumes and—
( ) Told her about Yamame. ( ) Told her about Ashi.
* “What do Gensokyo’s boys like reading in bed? A book of fairy tail.”
—and breathed back in first of everything, no man having ever uttered anything of worth on empty lungs.
And then, Gin Akamatsu, full of air and alcohol burning away reservations, said, all confabulatory, “Are you perhaps acquainted with the textile mill folks?”
Lady Akyuu smiled the expansive smile of someone who had caught the jibe and was keen to lock it away forever under a loose floorboard. “Yes, Gin; in fact,” she divulged, “more acquainted than I used to be closer this morning. I’ve cast about for that story you mentioned – of their row with the youkai from under Moriya – and, picture you this, one of the maids confirmed it for me. There was a row. A decade previously, or so, the then-clans-head of the family purposed for whichever reason to evict said youkai from the mountain – ending up stiff and in the ground for his efforts. And then, nigh on to a year ago, for what I may only assume to be the same reason, the man’s son set out to follow in the progenitor’s footsteps.”
“Men, eh,” mocked Gin.
Akyuu gave him a look that did not quite speculate his gender but which might have checked with its foot if such speculation was necessitated. “Yes, well, at any rate,” she resumed with a leer, “how I was told the family’s matriarch had dispensed with all this was by adopting the daughter of one of the retainers – raising her to be the next heir. However—”
Gin held up a hand. “You’re aware,” he asked her, “you use that word every odd sentence when you lecture? However?”
“Yes?” the young noblewoman wondered innocently. “Well, I promise you I cull those in editing when I write. Anyway – and however – the son is said to have been lately returned by this youkai, safe, if not without a measure of wear and tear. I’ll warrant the whole situation is ill to the girl’s like, happy as it is, but… it remains an ongoing drama, if we should give that maid the faith she would have. I’ll be glad if I’m wised up to how it ends, once it does. So? How does this pertain to your drama, Gin?”
The courier’s ability to brush aside swooping conclusions would appear to an outsider to be preternatural, but it was amazing what could be ignored if you squished your brows and continued full steam ahead on the train of thought you boarded first. He said, “I haven’t got a dim if it does, or how if so,” paused to tip the sake box at his mouth for effect, and then delivered the stinger, “but that clothier they hired on is dead sure a youkai.”
Lady Akyuu all but ignored the sting altogether at first, propping her chin languidly on an incurious little fist. “Oh? How do you figure?”
“The name Yamame strike a chord?”
At second, she felt it itch after all. There were many things to glean by watching what lady Akyuu did with the edges of her lips, mostly that they were the softest-looking pair on this side of the Pacific, although, by integrating their point into the context, other angles could be found, such as surprise or concern, both of which were in geometric evidence now. “… That Yamame?” she asked, awash in professional doubt. “Kurodani? You are positive?”
“Truthfully, no,” Gin lied. “That was the name given, though, and, uh… somebody dropped a hint maybe I best hadn’t poke her… What’s she expected to look like, anyhow?”
“There haven’t been many dreadfully vivid accounts,” admitted the young mistress, all frowny contemplation. “Generally plumped for version is a young-seeming female with a penchant for browns and golds. Sunny for an Underworld youkai – if a touch jumpy just to spoil it. Goes with being a spider, I conjecture. I had a piece drawn for the Symposium – but that, too, was more conjecture than it wasn’t. Hmm.”
“She was that,” said Gin, adding purely inwardly, That is to say, plump. “Smiles all over and giddier than mercury. Golden hair, dressed in all brown, albeit other hirelings were, too. And the name…”
“Three strikes, do you reckon?” suggested lady Akyuu.
And one more from fair Ashi, Gin thought and only thought, because to mention that would have sparked altogether another conversation. “I’ll bet a kiss it is.”
“Then I want her here,” decided Akyuu, smoothly glossing over the bet’s matter astride intrigue. “If this is the Yamame, and she is apprenticing here in town, then I want her at my desk and interviewed. I’ll pen an invitation; I can’t miss out on this. Well—” she added, a shade embarrassed by the bucking hobbyhorse, “—not now, understand, but a youkai from the Underworld—”
“Is this smart, young mistress?” Gin interrupted. “For the youkai and you both?”
“I’ve done this before, Gin,” she chided. “I am Gensokyo’s chronicler and the de jure spokesperson for the clan. I can do… surreptition,” she grimaced at the gooeyness of the word. “… Think, besides. A man dies to a youkai from the Underworld; the man’s boy embarks on the same journey later, but returns a year thence without a chip on his shoulder figuratively and literally, and a youkai from the Underworld now loans her services to the boy’s household. There is a story here. I want to learn it. Yamame can decline; I, however, must at the least make an attempt. So, I will. Thank you, Gin, for bringing this to my attention. And now, to flip this back on you—” There was a brief, ribbing imitation of his tension-ramping sip. “… Was the youkai-with-human-interests question at all to do with this?”
Gin switched side to side on his seat. “Yes and… a different yes,” he surrendered. “More to do with, uh… the waist-deep mingling she’s done there. If you get my message.”
“I do not,” said lady Akyuu, replacing the emptied cup on the saucer. “Tell?”
“Aah, well—” Once again, Gin put the swirlability of the sake box to a disappointing test. It didn’t disappoint in reinforcing that sentiment. “… When I got there for the job today,” he spoke then, “a helpful little thing informed me I’d need to look up one Yamame for the particulars. I asked where this Yamame could presently be found, whereat which another worker pointed me to a tool-shed out back, tucked away somewhere behind the house. So, I hopped on down there, quick as you like, slipped around the thorns in the hedge and had me a cautious peek through the shed’s window. And there was said Yamame, atop this huge bastard of an employee, happily stuffing her tongue down his pie-hole and moaning up a symphony.”
“… And you, being the roadman for pie-holes everywhere,” lady Akyuu noted, “didn’t consider it for a moment that she may have been attacking him?”
“Young mistress,” said Gin, with sternness that was as stern as it was affected, “the woman’s skirts were ridden up to her waist, and the man was having the merry way with her rump. Her hand was down his trousers, too, which was a clue.”
The young noblewoman blinked, wrong-footed by the news, her tongue momentarily peeking out between her rouged lips. “… And what was it doing there, do you believe?” she wanted to know at length.
“Unless spare change was involved, and a lot of clumsiness on top,” proposed Gin, “then I believe, mistress, that she was giving him, what we in the know call, a helping hand. That was effecting some confidence, I have to assume, because then the man paddled her ass so hard it rattled the glass in the windows. All the woman did, however, was squeal her glee at volume and keep at it, which is why, mistress, I reckoned nothing non-consensual was taking place,” he rounded off, sliding out of the Akyuu-tone. “On my pie-hole honour, I think they were both plenty into it.”
“And so,” the Akyuu in actual guessed, “you watched on, yes?”
And right then, the courier, heretofore bold as brass and greasy as a grindstone, reflected on the speeding thought-train’s direction. The unflappable eldest daughter of the Hieda had a glint in her violet eyes of a woman who really, really wanted to hear about your wonderful pet project and was determined to keep you talking, at least to the point where she had worked through your belt or, in worse cases, your wallet. He conducted the train, therefore, with a touch more care. Which was to say, he peeked left and right warily for sneaky cows ahead continuing, “… Yeah. For a bit, anyhow. That woman had a great butt.”
“Voyeur,” chided his lady, “as well as a pervert! Who am I employing these days…? Well? What else in addition did they get up, or I guess off, to? Talk, already!”
“Well,” Gin cleared his talkways, “they must’ve had their fill at one point, since they took a breather. The woman quit jerking him off and pulled her hand out, slimy all over. He gawped like a brained Oni, and she licked it all clean: from the heel of the palm to the tips of her nails – everything she’d wrung out of him. Lewd as all hells and, I reckon, the man thought just the same because he drat near jostled her from his lap and yanked down his pants faster than she could even get on her knees. She was all over him no later than he’d whipped it out, either way: just kissing, nuzzling and pressing her face to him like it was the loveliest thing in the world. Got even chirpier when he snatched up that blond ponytail of hers and gave it a nice tug. She unrolled her tongue, gazed right up in his eyes and lathered the whole thing, end to end, like so long a hot dog.”
“Was he big?” asked lady Akyuu. And then, when Gin raised her a brow, fanned a palm at it. “What? You said she had a big butt. What about him?”
“… Couldn’t vouch,” Gin decided, “not focusing on his butt at the while, but a blasted large man nevertheless.”
“And his hot dog?”
“Oh, pish-posh,” huffed Akyuu. “Since you’re already telling me the story of how you peeped on a client, perhaps a youkai, fucking someone in a tool-shed in the middle of the day, do stoop to give me those details as well. Will you please?”
Gin wiped the splash of sake from the table with a sleeve. “… OK,” he sighed, deflating and returning his attention to the intently staring and not a little complacent young lady, “fine, allow me. He went from her chin to a little above her forehead. To scale, he’d stand a head over me, or about. In height,” he clarified when he saw Akyuu breathe in to retort. “Clean-shaved, like a monk, and paler than the woman. It was a nice contrast, actually: tanned and all-natural on light and tonsured. It’d make for a painting.”
“Mm.” Lady Akyuu gave a tiny nod, never taking her attentive eyes off of Gin’s. “I have a well mental picture now, methinks. And she took this huge thing of his and…?”
“Went to town,” groaned Gin, envy rousing in his stomach even now. “After a couple’a strokes, I judged that’d be it: that I’d let them wrap up and go knock on the door afterwise. Only, she kept sucking and polishing that hot dog to a shine, and he just stood there, hustling her head by that ponytail, minute after minute, no finish line in sight. It was impressive – and a chill on my toes – how it went on and on.”
“Impotent, perhaps?” theorised the young mistress.
Gin gave a scoff. “A valiant effort from our purported youkai, if that’s the case. Anyhow, she blasted sure didn’t give in. Sucked him off so hard, you could hear the noise outside. When that didn’t pop him, she crammed him down her throat. And each time he pulled her off of himself by the hair, she pounced right back on him – spit and, uh, other fluids dribbling everywhere. It was like watching an amateur porno.”
Now were lady Akyuu’s highborn ears pricked up with curiosity. “Watching? Could you mean – on film? As in, motion picture? Tee-vee?”
Gin clicked his tongue. “Ugh—” he groaned. “Yes, er, right, you wouldn’t… Yes, on film,” he surrendered. “Outside World silliness, of course. Couples, er, record themselves on their own, too, sometimes. ‘Amateur’ is the label for those.”
“What an… idea,” marvelled the young noblewoman. “And, I suppose me, you have watched those… pornos… in numbers permitting a comparison?”
“I wasn’t an angel of a teen, mistress,” coughed Gin. “It’s like as not why I’m here with you today. Can I go on?”
“Yes. Yes – please,” the lady decided, squaring her dainty shoulders a few degrees. “We may talk about these ‘amateur’ pictures some other night. So, I take it, this ‘Yamame’ of ours turned out to be very skilled at… pleasing her man? Yes?”
“Amazingly and,” the courier hurried to add, “not only him because, somewhere in the course of screwing him with her mouth, she’d begun toying with herself, too. Couldn’t see how, exactly,” he admitted, “on account of clothes dangling in the way, but I could see how well – on account there was a wet spill on the floor between her legs afterwards. Seems plausible, in takeaway, that she could wrap you around her fingers as well, young mistress – if she inclined that way.”
Lady Akyuu’s eyes were slowly dropped shut, teeth pressing down on her bottom lip, as though the young noblewoman was entertaining – or striving not to entertain – just such a spin on events. Once she looked upon the world again, the world was Gin and his fingers gently caressing the sake box. “… What,” Akyuu asked at last, “about her man? He did, finally, appreciate her labours, yes? There was a happy ending, yes?”
Gin tipped the box precariously. “There might’ve been,” he allowed, “since right as I’d resolved to leave them to it, the man hauled out of her mouth and asked for her breasts, instead. I was left, needless to say, speculative. When she shed the bra, though, and I saw what she was sporting…” He let the box clatter horizontal again. “Some breasts out there can corrupt a man’s soul and standards, young mistress, and those, those… I was wiser than to take my chances. So—” he shrugged and reeled off, “—I crawled from the window, stomped up a righteous lot of noise, found a door, and banged on it ‘til the girl came out – and let me to do my job proper.”
He’d articulated “proper” how lady Akyuu might have in the morning. It had an air of death penalty floating around it.
And indeed, the eldest daughter of the Hieda was giving him a glare which, if not for the wayward hand hovering halfway to her neck and the lingering bite-marks on her bottom lip, could have meant to keelhaul him under the table. Akyuu, who had been listening to the sirens and their beguiling songs of salacious romance featuring her soon-to-be guest, let the perverted visions to hang behind her eyes for one more tantalising moment – before shattering them against their makers’ face.
“… You are a bastard, Gin,” she said, all but smouldering from disappointment, “a consummate, venal bastard of the worst breed. You’ve no discretion! That girl had probably waited for—”
A flash of something, possibly a better breeding reconfirming itself, squiggled the noblewoman’s incensed mouth. Lady Akyuu palmed her delicate face, which then, over the moment, transitioned into an anxious pinch of her nose.
“… Gin,” she murmured, eyes once more shut. “We can’t. Sorry. Not today.”
The courier’s forehead wrinkled like a dress shirt after washing. “… Can’t do what is that, now?”
Very slowly, Hieda Akyuu lowered her hand to her mouth, whereupon, in underlined chagrin, she squeezed its thumb between her white teeth. The unhappy, upward stare of her reopened eyes all but smote the buzz of sake from the roof of Gin’s skull and certainly left other parts of him smitten as collateral. And then, the young mistress sighed.
“We can’t have sex, Gin,” she announced. “No, do not you speak,” she stopped him when Gin leaned impetuously on the table. “This is what it was about all along, no? To get me talking about sex; to remind me what happened the last time we were alone together in this room at night? Well, I haven’t forgotten! That sort of thing sticks with you, Gin – did you know that? It sticks inside you until you wash it out; and then, it sticks in your head when you go to sleep. It sticks when you work, and it sticks when you ask your maid for that morning-after medicine. And did you know something else? I wouldn’t have had it otherwise! It was great. I love that it sticks. And yes, I do want a repeat – or two, or five, or more – while I can, Gin, and while you still haven’t been claimed. Or have I missed you with all the hints?”
Gin, looking penitent, raised a hand like a schoolboy – to a thankful yet smothered chuckle from the young noblewoman.
“Oh, be quiet, you hot dog,” she pouted. “Or were you wondrously about to recall what else it was I have hinted? That you oughtn’t to get your hopes up? That I am under the weather today? Oh, I’ll give you points for the ploy – but still, no. Sorry. Sex is a no-go; I ill wish to exert myself and regain that headache so soon after I’ve lost it. And if I ask Vivi for the medicine after tonight, she’s bound to figure— Yes? What?” she snapped when Gin punched the hand higher.
( ) “Guttermind. This was about youkai.” ( ) “And what about happy endings, miss Akyuu?”
There was a diffident lowering of hand and arm. Some cells of Gin’s brain fidgeted in validation; others grouched that, if they weren’t going to play ball, they should’ve gotten for a note from their mother. He smiled as lady Akyuu’s frown pinned the cleverness warming up behind his eyes. She almost returned it.
“… Guttermind,” he said, like a posh missus that was even more outraged than usual. “It was a sample I was illustrating! This was about youkai, not us.”
“Oh, was it?” flouted lady Akyuu. Or would have, if this had been elsewhere because this was the Hieda household, and in the Hieda household employees were as good as family, which turned the implications relatively incestuous.
“Of course!” Gin rode the tide regardless. “They’re what’s all Greek to me, mistress. I’ve been pelted by fairies and harried by youkai before, but at least it was straightforward. They were blasted youkai. You could infer they were going to harry you. They shouldn’t get raunchy on you; that’s like if I had a chicken coop and—”
Words, sincere and otherwise, were wafted from his mouth by the gust of air from lady Akyuu slapping the tabletop. Hell may have no wrath like a destitute shrine maiden, but a young noblewoman denied was almost a stock article. Lady Akyuu’s eyes, therefore, did spell hell – although it was mostly for merchandising reasons, as the target for her ire turned out, rather than his soul, to be one of Gin’s wrists. The skinny scribe’s arms couldn’t have benched a sack of salt, let alone a sack of blood and gristle the size of Gin; and so, the courier dragged himself along over the table’s corner – after the hand on which his lady was ineffectually pulling. She guided it, with a yank, around her hip – and smacked it flat against her own rear.
Alcohol spoke, denying any and all volition, but was spoken over by the sensation of a round, toasty buttock now filling Gin’s palm. Its kimono casing might, he would later review, have been something Gin could’ve done without – but even it could not diminish the sheer heat and plushiness of lady Akyuu’s well-used bottom. It was a bottom made for sitting on, which, in a rosy twist of the netherverse, made handling it manually also a happy occasion. The long fortnight Gin hadn’t done so only enriched the experience now. He essayed to give it a discreet squeeze, nothing beyond sinking his fingertips a little into the pillowy goods… and failed sensationally when the daring young mistress placed her hand atop his and urged it to grab a full handful of her aristocratic butt.
Gin did, memories of what it felt like without the inhibiting cloth crawling out of their mental hidey-holes. And then, those of the lady’s sultry voice, begging him to do the inconceivable – or, more toward the truth, the very conceivable.
“… Tell me, Gin,” that same voice challenged him now, “that you do not want this.”
Gin steadied. “I—”
“Too quick,” lady Akyuu reprimanded him from above; “I was going to add: be my guest, since nothing you contrive can forestall this happening again. I know you know this, Gin, and that I know this as well. Therefore, be my guest.”
On the table, the courier did an impression of a pinioned fairy, swivelling his head to glare aggrievedly at his captor. And like a fairy, his heart fluttered under his ribs at the sight of lady Akyuu’s face suspended above: framed between her well-kept hair and the floral brooch, smiling the suggestive smile she had that seemed fifteen years her senior, except wrinkling. There was a phrase: ‘beauty is power; a smile – its sword’ which, if true, would have made that of the young mistress one of those slim, Italian rapiers that could spit a man’s kidneys with a flick. It had those, Gin’s heart and Gin’s guts ready to roast in seconds.
The cruelly beautiful young lady toyed with a lock of her hair while her other hand toyed with Gin’s around her unmentionables. “To reiterate, Gin,” she told him, all honey and saccharine, “I like you. I have always, more or less; your humour is contagious, and our daily spars are the lumps of sugar in the otherwise watery oatmeal of my life. As well as that, lately, I have been finding you more and more attractive in that way, too. And while I may have acted on it crudely, for reason of my inexperience, to hold it against me is… shall we say, rather hypocritical of you? Were you or were you not attempting to segue me into sex with that story just now, do be honest?”
“… I was,” Gin said the words as though caught stealing cookies from the no-no jar. “I was, partly, yeah.”
Akyuu nodded as though this was expected occurrence. “Yes, and,” she went on, “any other night I would have, as the maids say, jumped your bones. I haven’t been neglecting you on purpose, if so you have surmised; I’ve simply been unwell. I remind you when our last time was, Gin. Would I have, do you reckon, had sex with just anyone while at my most dangerous? Or was there, perhaps, something more complex behind it than I have a fetish? Food for thought. Oh, I do have a fetish, before you wonder,” she added, obviously pleased to do so; “that and talking dirty are my two biggest tick boxes, which I confer on you in good faith. So,” she stressed, scraping her fingernails up the top of his palm, “do not you lose your nerve and backpedal on me the moment I refrain, Gin. I’ve merited better from you. You do want this butt, inexperienced or no – yes?”
Gin gripped a half of the aforesaid butt with greedy verve. “… Yes.”
There was once more a flash of white teeth about to pinch an abused lip, until the young mistress threw a leash on her raring reflexes. “… Tell me, then.”
And it’d have taken more than a stint with a cute spider-girl for Gin (and Gin’s Gin) not to rise to the bait. He levered himself up on the unoccupied arm, coming vis-à-vis with the venturesome young lady who seemed, for a flicker of the violet eyes, unsure whether she ought to be ducking from an unlicensed kiss. Gin didn’t dwell on the incongruity again. He sorted through all the appropriate confessions in his head – then flushed them down the moral drain.
“… I want to fuck you, young mistress,” he whispered instead, feeling lady Akyuu’s butt tense through his hand. “I want to hear this lovely voice of yours moaning my name again. It’s been driving me blasted mad that I might never.”
Another few compunctions dashed themselves to death on the way the young noblewoman licked her lips. “… I promise to moan like a strumpet’s ghost next time, then. Next time,” she emphasised. Gin’s mouth opened to object, but lady Akyuu barred it with a finger. “I said, it’s a promise,” she rebuked him. “Once I am better, I shall invite you ‘for tea’ again. Or, if I could elude my usual escort, I might come by your place, so we may do it on an actual bed. My knees were sore for two days straight after last time, did I mention? Only they, thankfully; most other places you put to the test were grateful for the exercise.”
Gin couldn’t not snigger at the shameless admission. So, he did. “… You’re so blasted naughty, mistress,” he accused her. “It’s thoroughly evil.”
Lady Akyuu shrugged her slight shoulders. “Monkey see, monkey do,” she opined, “and you, Gin, are one I’ve been looking at a lot. That should do it, no? Settle, now, please. I’ve stirred too much already; my temples are flaring up again.”
There were scant few things more hazardous to argue with in Gensokyo than temples, and so the courier delivered the young noblewoman’s rear from his clutches – and settled, as bidden, back in front of his unattended sake box. The household’s eldest daughter, too, smoothed down her kimono’s skirts and, casual as nothing, sat down to pour herself a cup of fresh tea from the urn.
It should’ve been unreal. A man and his noble lady did not, as a rule, arrange for a liaison before nonchalantly resuming to have tea at the same table, at least not without the man feeling fiercely discouraged or, all too often, being fiercely discouraged by the lady’s eavesdropping husband. What helped the reality none was that it’d been the second liaison shaken the man’s way that day – or third, if you included the one with sister Ichirin, which was more of a manqué. Then again, between being chased by a youkai, inveigled by another, watching a third deepthroat a bald guy and getting deepthroated by a fourth, maybe an affair with a regular, human girl wasn’t the thing to get hung up on.
Gin ratified that conclusion with a swig of the now slightly lukewarm sake. Both went down smoothly.
“… That sidelight aside,” he said then, “I wasn’t lying, mistress. And I did wonder. Call me a pervert—”
“I will,” chimed in lady Akyuu, cranking the urn and wrapping her hands around the refilled cup.
“—but she really was a sight to behold, was our Yamame,” finished Gin. “And that’s what boggles me something awful. She’s a spider youkai – right? Why, then, was she… er, lady Akyuu?”
The thundercloud frown melted from the young mistress’s delicate brows as fast as it had come on. “… Oh, no,” she reassured him, “it is nothing. Only, I realised just now how difficult it is going to be to interview her without picturing her, say… fingering me while polishing your hot dog at the same time. Thank you for that image, apropos. At any rate,” she went on ahead he could shoehorn in one syllable, “off-hand, I do have a couple of theories, however not one is concrete. I have yet to meet a youkai outspoken on the subject, too. Introspection, you may gather, isn’t the species’ strongest suit. Why, imagine they began to doubt their own ambages. It’d be a slippery slope to ceasing their existence.”
“Unless they were an old, powerful youkai,” Gin remembered.
“Yes,” confirmed Akyuu, “which is why, for Yamame, I have three prime suspicions. One concerns her known allegiances. She is a friend to the Underworld’s Oni; Oni, meanwhile, are everything except innocent of life’s simplest pleasures. A spirituous night, and our big-butted spider may have received a hands-on lesson on the birds and the bees from one of her horned neighbours. Another probability is, to pile it on thickly, that she had been seduced by the man with whom you saw her. As there are many curious youkai with agreeable shapes, there are as many daredevils who would, pardon my figure of speech, dip their hot dogs in too hot a sauce. Those cases, by and large, resolve themselves – unless they don’t, which is when couriers get to peep on such situations as they do. Although, going by what you said—”
“—it didn’t look as if she was after a permanent solution,” Gin supplied. “Or that it was the first instance. Or the last. Never seen a girl swallow a hot dog so happily before.”
Though came very near a little bit after, he thought – and hoped to divinities that lady Akyuu was not a secret satori after all.
The young mistress of the house gave no outward hint of telepathic capability, although a dirty look was certainly given regardless. “Yes, well, I trust that you do not make this a compulsion. Anyway—” she reassumed the scholarly tone with, what a more poetic soul may call, great vengeance, “—for Yamame at least, there is a third option. A wishful twist on the very myth of spider youkai. Are you familiar with the story of the Mistress of Jouren Falls?”
Gin smiled, settling in, now in earnest. “No. Should I?”
“Well,” supposed the scholar lady, now wholly argumentative, “the story pertains to a jorogumo, not a tsuchigumo, as which we broadly regard the Underworld’s spider youkai, so perhaps not. However, myths conflate and fluctuate here, in the crucible of Gensokyo. It may well be that our Yamame inadvertently takes after both and therefore manifests… similar inclinations, shall we say? At any rate, the story goes as follows: in the Jouren Falls of Izu, there is a creature said to be the mistress of the waterfall, a half-woman, half-spider enchantress. One day, a clumsy woodcutter drops his axe into the pool, only for his livelihood to be returned by a mesmerising beauty, on the condition he never tells a soul of what embarrassment has transpired. In one version of the myth, he drinks his caution away and blabs to his fellow townsmen. For this, he is dragged off in the night by an invisible string and found dead by the pool on the morrow. In another, however, he proves even clumsier, falling in love with the enchantress herself, and…”
And so it was that Gin whiled away the evening’s remainder contemplating, and later arguing, whether the woodcutter had wound up in the spider-woman’s belly – or if his wood had, in the same place, albeit from quite the opposite direction.
Morning rode a stab of light into Gin’s room by way of Gin’s window, ending up beached on Gin’s face to the muttered commentary of, “Grumble grumble get some mumble groan blinds moan!” The glowing review was recycled moments afterwards, with a few words swapped out, when Gin rolled over and found his nose jammed into a discarded, black brassiere someone had tossed there the day before and subsequently forgotten.
A minute later, the courier was perched on the bed’s edge, moderately vertical and sliding into his trousers, attempting without much hope and even less success to make sense of a dream wherein he’d taken a sexy youkai lady on a romantic tryst in a public library. It wasn’t something he would’ve done to a nice lady, let alone a nice library and, once the bottom of his porridge bowl issued no credible analysis, Gin set it aside for Mr Freud’s dubious amusement and disembarked for another day of running out in the Winter’s cold.
Inside the hour he was inside two more things, namely the Hieda mansion and the young lady Akyuu’s office, which he had spent on a scenic route, slid into and all but crashed on the door of respectively. Lady Akyuu herself was on her post – ensconced as always in a cellulose-and-ink fortress, a pen in one hand and a salmon-spread rice cake in the other – looking no worse for moral wear despite the mass of indecent speculation she had indulged the previous evening. She brushed the hair from her eyes with the pen-wielding hand, causing the entrant courier to question how much of her attention really was on that one as opposed to the one with the snack.
“Good day, young mistress,” he said, shutting the door behind him. “Sky’s looking funky, though. Might be snow later, in case you were going out.”
“Goof— Mm,” lady Akyuu swallowed. “Good day, Gin. I was not, not if I haven’t to. Still a bit indisposed.”
Gin made a sound. The sound went, “Hmm.”
Lady Akyuu pinned it by the syllable, so to speak, making a sound of her own in reply that said, as near as it could precluding language, “Patience.”
“… Well, I’ve followed your advice and passed the flowers to the kitchen girls,” the courier lamented, “so, apologies, no pick-me-up. Send this repentant Gin on the road, mistress, I beg you.”
“Mm. That, I shall do.” There was the period of customary shuffling, and a sheaf of blue-marked invoices was produced from the young lady’s favoured stacks. “Orders pending, as usual, to dispense to our suppliers,” she pointed out the fattest file. “Otherwise, should you dare defy that imminent snow, I have a small delivery here for the Hakurei shrine. Oh, and this is interesting—” here, she tapped her pen on another document, “—there is another of these custom orders, for someone in town called Sech… Seckie… well, I’ll pop a vessel before I can read this handwriting, but the address at least is legible. Moreover, I recognise these chicken scratches, and it is the same client as yesterday’s Myouren temple gig, complete with the entailed items, so… perhaps you will know what to expect. Oh, and,” she remembered, “if you can stomach the meeting… I have an invitation for a certain clothier whom you may or may not have gotten of late to know intimately. You may take it along with the suppliers’ papers, if you please. I won’t insist.”
“Already?” Gin crossed his arms. “You really can’t wait to undermine my version of the events, can you, mistress?”
“As if,” lady Akyuu said reproachfully. “Yamame Kurodani is, by all accounts, a craftswoman and a simple soul; it wouldn’t do to confuse her with colourful verbiage. I’ve elected to be cordial and concise and play off of her purported curiosity.”
“Better that than a Peeping Tom,” she countered, rolling those precious eyes like so small lottery machines. “Anyway, this is everything I have applicable for you now, Gin. You’re a touch too early today. I am currently waiting on our yardman to report back on farther runs to be done, however, so there might be some by the time you course around. Well? What will it be?”
( ) A formal call for the confounding clothier. ( ) A not-so-spiritual jaunt to the Hakurei hill. ( ) A crate of booze for the Seckie-someone.
Can't believe anyone would ignore the potential of removable heads. Although, presumably we'll have to handle more than a single job in a day anyway, so given the destinations we could do Banki on the way to Reimu. I wonder if our intrepid courier with the Hieda will end up all over Gensokyo by the end of all this. Could we even hope to finally see Sagume and Daiki again?
>>40206 There is one method! Worked out semi-OK with the dumb OC, too, didn’t it?
Hullo. Moron of words here. Would you believe me if I said I’d intended to make that second option a Keine one, but then suffered a minor stroke mid-sentence and defaulted to Reimu on a mental reboot? Well, I couldn’t. Still, there ought to be no issue fitting this into our little continu/at/y, so no harm done – except to myself. As the fashionable fiends used to say, “derp!”
“… Currying some favour with the gods never hurt anyone,” Gin resolved. At least, cynicism amended inside, the unseen ones.
Gensokyo had no dearth of the other type: wily old slickers that you could see, who’d have you convinced they were rational and even slightly down-to-earth then – BAM! – snap their fingers and raise said earth up to their level, acres at a time, glowing coyly all the while. And like Moriya’s lady Kanako, they worked by pageants and knew the staying power of irony, and especially they knew the irony of a converted atheist. Unseen gods, meanwhile, were less ostentatious, prone to leave you to your own devices – up until you died, anyway, whereupon they either slapped your hand or a “Kick me!” sign on your back as you plummeted toward reincarnation. It was overall more honest than being glowed at and expected to hang up posters.
Without a demurral, the young mistress slipped one sheet out of the ministerial fan. “I shan’t entertain that motive,” she said and surrendered it to the courier, “but it is no worse than the run you finessed out of me yesterday.”
The courier, pocketing the paper, raised a needling brow. “No drama this time, though?”
Now a demure pause was taken. “I had… a think.”
He watched her replace the documents in her hand with the unfinished cake. “… A think?”
“Yef—” she began – remembered her manners – and then corrected, “… Yes, in fact. After yesterday, I went and took stock of the situation in the service right now and determined perhaps an opportunity for you, Gin, to make an impression. Not on me,” she added, seeing the reply bulging Gin’s Adam’s apple; “I needn’t to be impressed; I am aware quite acutely how you and your colleagues are machined, thus where to look for your strongest points. I speak of other… people,” she said, in a tone connoting big people, rash people, people who didn’t hire a shrine maiden and carried their beating staves themselves. “The Hakurei hill is everything except far,” lady Akyuu went on, “and youkai’ll fain leave you alone if you take the Pilgrim’s Way and leverage with Reimu’s name if need be; still, I am counting on our yardman to have something more ambitious for your next trip, and I intend to nudge you in precisely that direction. Should you carry yourself with speed and diplomacy thereafter… well, let us say, some people might loosen up about things.”
“Some people,” scoffed Gin, almost running on to not me, though, but for the young mistress’s expectant gaze running him over even faster. “Yeah, right. I’ll believe it when I… well, I suppose in a best-case scenario, I won’t see it.”
In fact, in Gin’s mind’s eye, he could see many a non-best scenario wherein “not seeing it” wasn’t necessarily the happier outcome, for example if it involved the aforesaid staves. And there in the middle of it all was the young lady’s head maid, Vivi, who packed a nasty chop and an unswerving sense of decorum, particularly that owed to Gensokyo’s society by its upper crust. Gin held nothing but respect for the steely woman, if not for the chop then because she hadn’t baulked to inform him when the eldest daughter had been seeing red and what it stood for, as well as because she’d provided said daughter with medicine after the latter had nearly muddied the family’s bloodline, presumably without noising it about too much, which to the courier spelled “dependable.” It wouldn’t do to get on Vivi’s bad side, much less her chop’s, and the occasion of lady Akyuu working actively against it raised both Gin’s spirits and suspicions.
The devious young mistress didn’t let it go amiss, cheering, “Oh, do take heart, Gin. Since I know you, and I can read that lumpy mug of yours, yes – I am still averse to, and haven’t changed my mind about, putting you in more harm’s way than it is prudent of me as your employer. View it, however, in terms of advancement. You will be impressing people; you will be doing me a favour; you will be seeing new faces whom, I wager my right, you will fast endear yourself – and the service – to with that glib tongue and toothy smile. And then, lest we forget—” lady Akyuu narrowed her eyes and looked wilful, which, Gin considered, was probably the case, “—lest we forget,” she resumed, “you have done this already, Gin. Twice. Yes?”
Gin blinked. “I have?”
“Yes,” confirmed the young mistress, “and, for the record, I mean dealing with uncommon clientele. Why, I believe you even arose with a little something else on top beside the routine, yes? A handful of gold in one instance – and a golden beauty with a handful in the other, if I have it right… Have I the right, Gin?”
In all except the number of handfuls, suggested Gin’s glib tongue. Lady Akyuu must’ve heard him rub his wits together because she had a rather smug expression on and appeared convinced of the responsibility to safekeep the courier’s stories inside her perfect memory for future derogation and, that same courier suspected, with which to coerce him to disclose more, possibly more scandalous ones, in the times coming.
For now, though, he split the wits apart and sighed, “When have you not had the right, mistress? Giving me this promotion discounted?”
And right then he felt a chuffed courier indeed because, procedure reasserting itself, the young lady eyed him as though he was in great need of something, most likely a kick in the rear.
He got a kick, albeit elsewhere in his ego, promptly, when the Hiedas’ yardman did a double-take seeing the unserious hireling assigned a lot for the renowned Hakurei. He did, nevertheless, walk away with what Gin would later dub a “wild surmise” to soon furnish the courier with an oblong, pinewood case with a strap down the lengthier side to hang from a shoulder. That and, as it proved, a bit of verbal small print.
“No feein’,” he cautioned.
Gin made a face. “No-fing what?”
The rolled invoice was smacked on the yardman’s wrist. “No feein’ the shrine maiden,” he said. “All’s balanced off. She don’t pay, no discussion.”
“This something you softies decided,” asked Gin, balancing the box beside his head, “or from on-high?”
The yardman’s shrug could’ve said a hundred words – but didn’t.
Oh come on...Ak-ū has to get preggers at some point right? It's not like there are any upper-class males that have been shown in cannon. Why the heck does Vivi care which of the dirty, sweaty pig farmers end up shooting a half-quart of jizz up her snatch? I swear that woman has absolutely zero chill.
The hour spent on the road had lent itself to productivity. The Hakurei hill, “everything except far” to a book-bound eye, was all the same a goodly walk, most of it eponymously uphill, and any mind consecrated to prodding one foot before the other needs must availed itself of higher pursuits to defend against atrophy. Thus, Gin’s had framed no less than two new preliminary stanzas for the Left Foot Forward marching song, covering a dissolute Buddhist priestess in one case and a naïve youkai spider with a big Oni friend in the second, rhyming at the speed of a classroom clock really at odds with the students.
Winded, and in defiance of Gensokyo’s customs, missing no vital constituents – but, on the other hand, constituting one bored courier – he arrived at the base of the thousand steps (truthfully, about two hundred at the loosest tally) leading up to the Hakurei shrine. There he was humbled to accept that he’d been larding the lie of the land something keen; nothing along the Pilgrim’s Way had raised his pulse above the norm, but for a single flight of fairies – or otherwise markedly hominoid birds – passing overhead, and the same would’ve held on most of Gensokyo’s roads, save those very well named and designated as misleading. Gin Akamatsu had anyway long perfected giving way with a scarper in such situations as overrode the laws shielding humans from indiscriminate assault – this, at any rate, being rare enough these days for youkai who would enact it to find, metaphorically speaking, that their bloomers were now down around their ankles and their bare behinds had the fierce interest of powerful individuals who liked to describe what usually proceeded as “an incident.”
And the headmost of those interested parties was the Shinto shrine maiden of Gensokyo, the Hakurei. Across his years in the hermetic realm, Gin had seen the orphaned girl mature from a marginally more civilised Tarzan-girl squatting in a derelict temple to a stunning young woman cultured enough to throw pan-Gensokyan festivals, who ballyhooed her services in town, had a purported soft spot for children and was, on the whole, someone you might want to call “miss Reimu,” for preference from fewer than three inches away, during a slow dance or, better, a mid-party recess behind the shrine. It was therefore a waste in at least one opinion that miss Reimu had come out so far as a self-reliant soul, disinclined to enter spaces where a gohei stick would have to go, like a pub or marriage, and seemed to hold more truck with the youkai whom she subdued than her fellow humans – who were subdued for that reason in turn. It was a cycle of subdual that, given time, threatened to put a leash on the very land and make it bark on command.
Gin squinted up the hill. Stairs were the one type of architecture other than windows that could outstare a man and rearrange his day-plan, but not if the man had Gin’s plan and Gin’s kneecaps working in tandem. He affixed the parcel on his shoulder – and climbed.
Hakurei shrine the third (or fourth, or fifth – nobody counted anymore) emerged from the Winter mists at the end of a flagstone pathway: wider than it was tall, taller than it was modest, with a slanted, ornate roof hung all along with yellowed shimenawa ropes and strips of fortune paper. A painted and repainted offertory box stood a lone, lone vigil before the worship hall’s patioed entrance: the averred soul of the Hakurei to hear some tell it, for it alone had been spared the many forced remodellings suffered by the shrine at this or that supernatural hand. Of the box’s jealous owner, there was no sign. The dusty shrine grounds were, like she, cool and forlorn.
Gin mounted the treads and circled the box to push a palm against the hall’s stout door which he discovered to be, in yet another parallel, locked for unsolicited worshippers. The courier frowned, curled a fist, rapped its knuckles on the polished wood and waited, each with varying enthusiasm.
A response-less minute later, coming back from the inner realm of Wont, where he had gone to retrieve his greetings, Gin Akamatsu (with the Hieda, have a package here for uhhh…) noticed a trio of fairies circuiting the shrine grounds high in the pale sky. All the courier had on him were the parcel and his boots, and it was appalling how nimbly fairies could dodge both. Gin gave them one unaddressed leer then skulked down the veranda on the shrine’s eastern flank, trusting to find the Hakurei and the bubble of comparative safety out back and in a not-too-fairy-forgiving mood.
He didn’t, or leastwise he didn’t in the capacity he’d expected – and neither had he to venture farther than the second of the sliding side-doors to freeze as only a courier out in the Winter cold might.
And the icy grounds on which he did was because, beyond the door, someone was being in an audibly good mood.
As the thump of surprise petered out in Gin’s skull, he could pick out a female voice filtering through the shoji screen: young and unfamiliar, though familiarly breathless, tight with excitement and, above all else, wholly unconcerned for spying ears. His heart rammed under his throat once he recognised, more or less formally, what the ecstatic “Nnh”s and “Fuhh”s and “Nhaa”s must denote under the circumstance. It wasn’t sorcerous rocketry, really.
The Hakurei, miss Reimu, the shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo, was either enjoying a nice morning work-out, or was enjoying said work-out even more in a different area of her body altogether.
Gin held fast, waiting a male voice to evidence itself and rewrite miss Reimu’s marital status in the courier’s worldview but, contrary to hers, none was forthcoming. Filling in that role was the wet, smutty sound of something behind thrust in and out of a similarly wet and, going by the shrine maiden’s thrilled vocalisations, very happy place. For a strained moment, Gin Akamatsu stood, uncomfortable, outside the door, attempting to reconcile with his better side – up until he busted said side furtively reaching with a hand for said door, all without his stamped or as little as rumoured approval.
Fuck, he thought, feeling greasier than bacon and more curious than three college girls taped together.
( ) Leave the delivery here, right here, and vamoose. ( ) A peek never brutally mauled anyone with a gohei, right? ( ) Knock, you fool!
Curiosity, nonetheless, was a beast that had killed fluffier creatures than Gin and wasn’t to be piqued. He turned over a new leaf, as it happened a fig one, and crushed the liberty-taking hand into a tyrannical fist.
The knock gavelled a series of events on the other side of the thin door that, if Gin had been younger, would have taught him girls were no strangers to throwing and profanity when caught unawares. What chased those was a murder of barefoot, carrion steps, and then the door burst – or tobogganed, rather, given the sliding quality – open at a velocity that could snip the tail off a diving swallow, issuing out into the pale daylight a young woman who might have, and during her misspent youth had, taken whatever life had hurled her way with her chest puffed up and barrelled on through with the impact thus cushioned. The courier was now, the woman’s flushed scowl was telling, such an obstacle, albeit to be removed rather with a stout branch than more bodily implements.
A salted, peppered or otherwise seasoned spotter of Gensokyo’s shrine maidens could observe, depending on the season in question, that the Hakurei’s outward aspects were subject to small, elusive changes that escaped the more perfunctory, colour-centred populace. There were times when miss Reimu would, for example, wear her hair tied longer or shorter, with bows of varying size and finish, more or less frilly as cosmic whimsy dictated. There were times when her outfit would be complemented by a sporty halterneck, a flowing scarf, vest tucked in or hanging out as the shrine maiden battled the Winter chill, rather like, it could be surmised, the human she underneath was. And then there were those happenstances when the protector of Gensokyo would dress for ceremony: in bulkier robes that put function before motion and crushed onlookers with responsibility.
The Hakurei’s appearance now was, Gin could all but attest, nowhere in that catalogue. The bow, for one, had been forgone completely, as had miss Reimu’s other, unnameable accessories, leaving her dark hair free to inconvenience the back of her neck and shoulders. The orthodox red was gone from her outfit, ceded wholesale to the purity white of a mussed, fuzzy bathrobe the shrine maiden had, earmarks were, folded back close in somewhat of a rush.
Gin twinkled against caution. He could see behind the frustration in miss Reimu’s burnt amber eyes that he wasn’t who she’d bargained for, possibly because he was no youkai, was about her age and had a studied go to grass look of his own. That middle insight built itself precariously over the moment, at the end of which, sooner than through the ice in need of breaking, Gin perambulated his attention down the shrine maiden’s deep, sweat-sheened and rather more womanly than girly cleavage. It looked as though it could hold a whole wallet, let alone a banknote, and no attempt was being made by its owner to hamper just such a lucrative event.
There was a slow intake of breath, and the cleavage became a tad bit deeper. It all but steamed in the chill Winter air.
“Four. No, five…” miss Reimu was saying. Gin caught her rake her petulant gaze down then up his front again. “… OK. Six words. No more. Or you’re going back down those stairs – at speed. Who and what?”
Gin reckoned up his reply, somewhat bemused, because the receiving end of the waspish glare was making him feel, Ginometrically speaking, somewhere in the seditious circumference of atingle. The shrine maiden joined his deliberation, folding her arms and, yes, still omitting to cover up her creamy assets.
At length, with the aid of a pointy fingertip, the courier advanced: “Gin Akamatsu – with Hieda – delivery – you.”
Miss Reimu’s scowl bored into his forehead.
“I’m,” the courier hastened to explain, “Gin Akamatsu; I’m by the young mistress’s longanimity indentured to the Hieda delivery service, and I’ve a parcel signed for you. Chunky bugger, too. Might be some’n neat, as they say.”
“… That is a lot more than six words,” burred the shrine maiden.
Gin sighed. “Look, miss Reimu, I do my job. As do you. Take this thing off my shoulder or, well, tell me where to shed it without knocking over a Buddha, and we’ll call it well met – deal?”
Which it is, by the bye, was the silent pursuer. If Yamame had looked blowsy and scandalous in dishabille, then miss Reimu wore it like erotic lingerie. Gin could now see, without the usual bar of distance, that the inside of the shrine maiden’s open robe was displaying a healthy tan in addition to a jaunty birthmark on the inner slope of her left breast, and the overarching effect was, gods forbid, delicious as all hells – a term that ought never to be applied to priesthood, but which was now tempting Gin to apply it blithely all over miss Reimu.
Soothed by the treacly syllables of respect, the surly young woman unwound an inch or two, switching from leg to bare leg and, Gin could swear, chiming very faintly in the process. She still glowered as if he’d tendered to her a low-interest loan – which was miss Reimu’s pet fallback come to think of it and, Gin thought furthermore, perhaps the root of her interpersonal tragedy or at least the big, knobbly bulb growing off of it.
The shrine maiden, who wasn’t to be outdone in the cross-vocational examination, peered up at him and, with blunt candour, opined, “… You reek.”
Gin sniggered at the summary. “Well, miss,” he wiped a sleeve across the involuntary grin and said, “I run. I think you might find that it lathers up not only a horse.”
The Hakurei’s brows were rucked up once more. “… What? Forget that. You have youkai-stink wafting from you like smoke, old man. Is something attacking humans on the Pilgrim’s Way again?”
“Old—” The courier nearly fissured. “We’re the same age! Well,” he conceded, “decade, at least.”
And once again, the shrine maiden scanned him lengthwise with occupational distraction. “Mm. No. No way. Were you or weren’t you attacked, then? This is my job, you know?”
Gin dressed his wounded (late) young adult age and gave a conciliatory cough. “… Right. Not on the Way, anyway, no. Otherwise… er, would lean on what you mean by ‘attacked’ per se.”
There was an undisguised groan as miss Reimu girded her figurative and literal loins. Although, being in a place of authority had to be a plain relief on her mind, and with rehearsed ease she rattled down, “Chased, shot at, roughed up, tricked, made to bargain with, touched up inappropriately, stolen from or harmed any-how-way by one or several youkai that weren’t fairies and neglected Spell Card rules,” and the list concluded. “For the record,” the Hakurei disclaimed, “I’m not about to fly off and beat them up. Need details, so I can decide what next.”
“Um. Some of those,” Gin admitted, “definitely pertain…”
Miss Reimu’s eyes turned like a private investigator’s who hadn’t quite got their biggest case yet but saw a red Type 57 pull up at the lot.
“Go on?” she asked, switching feet. And there again was the muffled chime.
[X] Wield Audacity I'm interested to see where Reimu plans on taking this should we play dumb. Wouldn't want the angry miko to Fortune Teller us for laying with youkai, after all. I also must wanted to take the chance to say that your writing style is an absolute joy to read, and I'd happily read an entire story that was just Akyuu explaining various Gensokyo and youkai concepts to Gin
Gin filed it under “Quaint and/or odd,” where lady Akyuu’s enmity for kisses and natto had their home, and had a last crack at wedging some thrift into the shoptalk.
“First of everything and ahead I answer that,” he laid down, “the youkai thing. Is it, in any fashion, er… fatal?”
Miss Reimu adopted a bearing that didn’t crossly tap a gohei on her shoulder but which might have had one been but present. “No,” she pronounced. And then, to remind how rapidly medicine could progress, “Not directly, anyhow. It’s a mark, old man; youkai’ll be more apt to notice you, but it won’t make you fall over and croak. Unless it’s a hex. Or a seal of ill luck or whatever. ‘S why I need to know, see?”
“And once you do?”
And the Hakurei harrumphed. A full-sized harrumph that bespoke enterprise and monetary compensation. “I can dispel it for you,” she declared. “You townsfolk may forget it, but that’s inside my competences too. I am a shrine maiden, you know. I can do after-attack care. Have been, even if it isn’t bandied about. For years.”
That last remark had the undertone of the put-upon, but in her eyes pride flashed a fin. Gin took it under advisement and vowed in silence to see if his future might perchance fit some bandying. “… Ah, care,” he repeated then. “I hadn’t heard, truth to tell. Well, I live and learn.”
“… Sure,” the Hakurei granted tentatively. “Well? I’m waiting.”
Gin Akamatsu forced his face to go so callous, the pads of his palms would’ve felt silky in comparison. He hemmed and hawked at dramatic length. “… I may,” he at last confessed, “or may not, albeit rather unmistakeably have had in this case, relations with a youkai which may or may not, although could positively under the circumstance be defined as ‘indecent,’ yes ma’am.”
Miss Reimu said nothing in reply, although her look would have warmed a man for the rest of his life, especially if his trousers were any flammable, and really there was nothing else wise to add, but Gin did so anyway.
“This last Summer,” he related, “it happened I was knocking back a magnum of gin with this girl I’d hit upon in a bar, and some ways into that it cropped up she was, in actual, an itinerant youkai. Can’t rightly tell you what kind,” the courier cautioned, not without a measure of technicality; “suffice to say, though, when we said goodbye in the morning, everything of mine that ought to be attached still was, so I counted that as a night survived and thought on it no more.”
“Uh-huh,” said the Hakurei, who was frowning fierily, a reminder that the common pair of trousers in Gensokyo was sewn from linen and burned rather merrily. “But?”
“But,” obliged the courier, “lo and be-blasted-hold, yesterday, while I was coursing in town, she showed again. She brought me to bay in a long, empty alley and, er… browbeat me into a sequel. So to say.”
Miss Reimu didn’t toe the line of delicacy. Neither did her arms, braiding tighter under her half-exposed bust. “You screwed a youkai.”
Would that I had, brooded Gin. Aloud, he volunteered the same, “Would that I had,” but for a pinch of tactically faked derision. “No, but I didn’t. There was, uh… pressure to, but I bargained for a lot of heavy petting instead. Heavy, heavy petting – but no real sex. Nothing I wouldn’t’ve done with, say, a hand.” He rued that insight at once and so pursued, “… Is that fatal?”
The shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo didn’t tell at first. She just looked the look of a teacher who had caught the boys perusing a book of questionable Tengu photographs behind the schoolhouse and was inventing a punitive thesis as they scrambled to make themselves scarce. And then, after a despondent moment, she sighed the sigh of that same teacher realising five hundred words on Tengu social structure wasn’t apt to write over the pictures of said Tengu showcasing their underwear.
“… No,” miss Reimu gave up. “No, it isn’t fatal and no, I’m not shocked. I won’t pretend to understand why, but yes, these things happen and not half as seldom as I’d like. Kitsune and spirits and even wolf Tengu, for example, have some strange ideas. A while back, not to fish too far out, my friend Marisa, might’ve heard of her, she was called on to attend a farm-boy who’d gone and got himself kidnapped by one up to the Moriya and…”
And whatever it was they’d got up to there had to stand in violation of either miss Reimu’s Hippocratic Oath or altogether her good taste because she clamped her teeth on a lip and forwent to close the sentence. On the flip side, the drift in focus unwound her arms which slumped along her sides, leaving her unsupported breasts to droop and split the airy bathrobe even wider down the front. Miss Reimu fixed it distractedly, which amounted to drawing the halves enough that her large, pink areolae were merely hinted at instead of peeking out curiously at the world.
The same couldn’t be done to her eyes, which refocused on the afflicted Gin in a no less curious or hardy way. “… I’ll help you, anyway,” she declared then. “Scoff it down all you like, but if I can sense that youkai on you, so too will others. And that’s not the sort of attention you want, trust me.”
If there was ever such a thing as cautious scepticism, Gin’s would’ve had its own armoured car. “… Will I hurt afterwise?” he asked.
At which miss Reimu moaned her vexation. “Look, you… with Hieda, delivery, guy. I’m a youkai exterminator. It isn’t my place to judge humans. As you said: I do my job. And if I’ve to do my job on a human,” she promised, “believe me, I’ll do my best to leave their human parts no worse for wear. Again, I’ve been at this. For years. Can I have a little faith?”
She delivered the plea with a bob and another chime and stared at Gin, who judged and flogged himself in her stead, a token of the diplomatic flair so vaunted in him by lady Akyuu. There and then, apprehensions all but scourged, the courier breathed out the expansive breath of a man who had nothing to lose but money.
“… OK,” was numbly carried out on it.
The mussy shrine maiden nodded her answer with a certain amount of foxiness, or it would’ve been foxiness if miss Reimu had been one of the man-abducting kitsune and known the word existed.
“Well, finally,” she sighed either way. “All right, delivery man, let’s get you prepped. Come.”
And then, chiming her liveliest thus far, she bore off her lithe legs and unruly cleavage and also now a faint smile back indoors.
Within the minute, Gin had been borne along – although, matter of fact, had mostly borne himself – to the shrine’s warm interior where, in prompt order, he’d been enjoined to drop the delivery “wherever,” commanded to strip to his underpants and to wait while the ebullient shrine maiden retrieved the not necessarily necessary but reputedly helpful implements. And these he had: stood the oblong box sophistically under a wall, wiggled out of his Winter boots, hanten and trousers, and then sprawled out on the hard, straw-mat floor like a spice merchant ready to be trampled by a cute Ashiatsu masseuse.
And now, in a place where he felt he might belong, the courier peered around what had to be the Hakurei’s informal sanctuary, comprising a low table, cabinet, a bundle of blankets and, peculiarly, a reasonably jammed bookcase, an oh-so-ascetic retreat that Gin’s would’ve appeared a noblewoman’s armoire in comparison. As it was, there’d likely been more female underwear there this morning than there was in here now. Gin fancied the layout. It had an efficient, streamlined quality, and the floor was heated, meaning any day the shrine maiden wasn’t badgered by pesky youkai or even peskier couriers would see the kitchen or the outhouse as the farthest destination abroad, always a perk for young women who liked to loaf about in flimsy bathrobes.
Somewise, though perhaps not very, Gin’s eyes trundled across the toasty floor and under the Hakurei’s shin-high table. The chuckle he spat bounced off the same floor. There was no sugar-coating it.
There, atop a flat, varnished case improbable to be full of religious collectibles, sat miss Reimu’s earthly boyfriend. He was chestnut brown, somewhat long, ostensibly fashioned from the same wood as the case and studded all along with ruthless bumps that promised to do and by the looks already had done a number on a lonely shrine maiden’s reliquary. He glistened in the filtered dawn-light, insinuating to the courier that not only had miss Reimu withdrawn him in rather a hurry, but perhaps in the midst of a very good part as well.
Additionally, he insinuated that he, Gin, was now in the unique position to be miss Reimu’s rebound guy.
Steady, Gin willed at the Gin that oriGinated the idea. We got Ashi to spit-shine you; we’ve a date with the young mistress somewhen soon unlike to be all tea and gossip. Good heavens! Are you really lusting after the Hakurei now?
And that Gin, heinously, replied, Aren’t you, though?
Had he not been lying on his stomach, Gin might have coshed his neighbour below something legendary; yet he had the fact, had the bonehead rascal, and no mistake. Miss Reimu was a prize. She had the legs, the gorgeous hair and mystic inaccessibility, and Gin had the compromising episode from five-odd years before wherein he, together with a bevy of kindred daredevils, had forayed into one of the Hakurei’s flower-viewing parties to ask the esoteric habitués for a dance. He’d not gotten a hold of miss Reimu ahead the fastest of his keg-brothers and twirled the night away instead with a minor goddess from Moriya who, while pleasant to be pressed against, had not been the tiddly, happy shrine maiden of Hakurei.
It was a quiet grievance that had pasted miss Reimu’s joyful face someplace on the backwall of his mind and never remembered to take it off.
When at last he had disembogued himself of sentiments which wouldn’t have been out of place in a Venezuelan telenovela but which weren’t near that far from his heart geographically, he hadn’t a minute to elbow in a rhyme for “dildo” before miss Reimu, still in her white bathrobe, re-entered the room possessed of an armful of spiritual miscellany. There was a hitch (supplemented by a chime) as she took notice of Gin’s position, a fizz of stingy amusement, and then miss Reimu said,
“What are you doing? Get up.”
So, Gin, bashful in his underwear, gave up the comforts of horizontality. The Hakurei wharfed her cargo on the table and set about her rites, striking off with a quartz and fire steel to an incense bowl then moving on to tie new streamers on her Ōnusa wand, concluding with a chanted prayer to the unseen myriad gods. Never a militant sectarian, Gin supplicated along, mostly in his head and employing large, broad terms, so as not to snub any deities eavesdropping. The wand was given a pilot flourish, and miss Reimu got up to her feet, whereupon she lavished a dash of her attention on the divested courier.
“All right, macho man,” she demanded. “Stay where you are and let me work.”
And then, sooner than Gin’s machismo may distil the compliment, the shrine maiden gripped the rustling Ōnusa in both hands and raised it high overhead. Soothing whispers came forth as miss Reimu shook it left and right, alongside the mystifying chime, and the front of her robe parted down the middle from the motions – a combination of events to trickle down the annals of Shinto transgressions but not without grudging allowance, especially in conjunction with the shrine maiden’s hefty bust. Miss Reimu moved on to echo the gesture at each of Gin’s cardinal sides, the breach in her clothing inching wider and wider, until terminating at the courier’s back, by which time the incense had floated up enough for him to recognise it was the same, ordinary kind lady Akyuu burned off and on in her office. He tried not to lift a dubious brow, which proved not altogether difficult once the shrine maiden thwapped the streaming, tickling Ōnusa on his scalp.
A grim, “Nothing. Hmm…” murmured behind Gin’s shoulder. “… The impurity must’ve attached somewhere,” miss Reimu then decided. “Yup. Still there, stinky as. I’m going to have to pat you down, delivery man. Stand still.”
There was a sharp, confused flutter down in the pit of Gin’s stomach as he felt the shrine maiden’s palm slide up between his shoulder blades. Miss Reimu paused.
“Stand still, didn’t I say?” she complained.
Gin clamped down on spontaneous body movements. “Sorry,” he said. “Frightfully ticklish there. I’ll clench my teeth and think of motherland.”
“Actually,” miss Reimu’s dulcet voice suggested, “if you’ve to distract yourself not to jump around like a young buck, why not tell me something?”
“Something!” Gin obliged.
A thumb was dug between his ribs, and a snarky, “Ha-ha,” crashed on his stretched skin. “… No, but for real,” the Hakurei drove on. “You’re with the Hieda. Yes? Are you Akyuu’s friend?”
“Not—” started the courier. Then, miss Reimu’s hand on his nape momentarily stole the thought. “… Not half the friend I’d love to be,” he finished. “An employee first and foremost, I am.”
“Same as the others,” she concluded. “And this youkai who you screwed? That something regular?”
As the shrine maiden’s inquisitive hands roamed the span of his back, known in offices as his tool of trade, Gin wondered whether pouring this particular truth on the rumour mill had been very stupid or the onset of catharsis. He seconded one of the two. It was a 50/50 bet anyway.
“Your excellency,” he coughed, “I reiterate I have screwed no youkai, regular or elsewise, on my Gensokyan oath and the gods.”
So far, his un-conscience had to twist the knife. Miss Reimu joined in the endeavour, hand and mouth.
“And what have you done with it – exactly?”
Gin rattled his jaw. “… There was cuddling,” he confessed. “A deal of that, a deal of feeling each other up – nothing enforced – and then, er… she had a go at my monster.”
“Man-ster,” Gin joked humourlessly. “My man-parts, miss, my ding-a-ling, baby. She wanted to try sex, but we’d agreed on oral stuff exclusively, so there it went. Is this so critical?”
“A Taoist would say,” miss Reimu supplied, “that little is more critical than not spilling your jing down a well of filth such as youkai. Which, of course, you didn’t – right?”
“I—” Gin swallowed, facing down the reheated memory of pumping his jing down the well of Ashi’s hot, slimy gullet. Something else down under was thrilled to remember as well. “… I un-unfortunately might have,” they spoke in rare harmony. “Those things, you know, happen. Little say I had.”
“… Fool,” miss Reimu reviewed, smacking his right hip for punctuation.
And because the smack had been handy rather than wand-y, Gin remained in something of a daze right up to when the shrine had rounded him to stand close, inadvisably close, so close he could count the pores on her nose, to his bared frontispiece. And she had discarded her Ōnusa, had the brave miss Reimu, relying now on nothing except her fingers to probe around Gin’s bulging scrag, which it very much was because hereabouts was suddenly a young woman who, if you cared but to look, and frankly Gin oughtn’t to but did nonetheless, was young and a woman in plentiful accumulation. It had to do with the rosy skin, the lustrous hair and the faint tan and was not in the least… or perhaps some… a grand little… very fine, a lot to do with to the cleft in her bathrobe disporting her own, very smooth and very female frontage right down to the bellybutton.
Against his better judgement and the judgement of his betters, ogling the Hakurei’s lush cleavage, Gin dusted off his bluster bag.
“… Has anybody thought it fit to inform you,” he gently questioned, “that you are an arresting woman, miss Reimu?”
“I’ve heard the whispered warnings, yes,” replied the shrine maiden, not deigning to glance away from her work.
Gin broke out in a chuffed grin. Good heavens, this one. It was a special woman who deflected flattery so savagely; and though the execution differed, like lady Akyuu, miss Reimu seemed to know compliments were to be declined, matured and then uncorked at the moment yielding the most premium. That or, like Ashi, she didn’t know what a compliment was, but the courier anted on the overall more complimentary side. There was a sight to flatter about miss Reimu either way you sliced her: from the way her bangs framed her face to the way said face played along with a look of severe focus; from the robust legs that vanished under the bathrobe to the supple bust contending for quite the opposite. From the roots of her dark hair to the nails of her nude toes, the shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo was a ripe, intensely attractive woman whose mores wronged the very balance of the matrimonial world. And Gin’s into the bargain.
And then it was shaken to the foundation when one of miss Reimu’s hands edged down his chest to poke around his sternum. The overstrained bathrobe lapsed at last and slipped completely off the shrine maiden’s geometrically appropriate breast. A fat, pink and utterly stiff nipple winked from atop the mound of springy flesh at its mildly disgruntled owner and her gawping patient, until the former of the two muttered something moderately candid and pulled the rebellious cloth back over her naughty areas. She’d barely done that when the other half of the robe followed its sibling’s example, bestowing on Gin an eyeful of the Hakurei’s other breast, which was just as big and just as excited for the brief taste of freedom. Miss Reimu grumbled – hitched the fabric – and covered it up also.
Once she moved her palms on to Gin’s stomach and both of her breasts slipped out at once, that was when patience must’ve lost its shine. Miss Reimu spread her arms as though to inspect her perverse bosom – sighed – and then carried on fondling the courier’s abdominals while his grateful eyes feasted on the panorama of the Hakurei mountain range. And how. Nowhere the size of Yamame’s, for that standard had been deprecated forever, the eremite shrine maiden’s tits looked all but oversized on her leaner frame: round, dense, with an endemic sag some time in the future but ecstatic to display their hard, jutting nipples now an opportunity was presented. Ichirin-firm would’ve been pushing it but, in contrast and to scale, miss Reimu could give the fuller, more intimate boob-job. Any time she budged, the copious bust jiggled in counterpoise.
Surreal was the word of the hour, and Gin savoured each of its syllables as he savoured the shrine maiden’s sweaty teats and the sensation of her fingers circling around his sixth chakra. Somewhere downstairs there were the stirrings of a heresy that, contained for now, would before long be clamouring for the shrine maiden’s attention.
Surrealism, however, had the unlucky habit of narking to rationality, even if in Gin’s case it turned out a few letters off of redundancy.
“… Um. Miss Reimu?” he asked of the effectively topless clergywoman. “Is this fine? I can see, well, everything.”
An interlude of her fingers curling on his stomach and an upward peek from her burnt amber eyes presaged the shrine maiden’s fantastic tits being squished between her arms. “… You mind?”
Gin felt a surge of heat temper his jaw. “Hell no.”
That was, perhaps, not incumbent, but drat did he feel better that she was a lady not foreign to being appreciated. Miss Reimu smiled, inched closer and brushed herself on his bare chest ahead backing away, four things that made his underpants go from rush hour to an underwear-wide traffic jam. It was everything Gin trusted himself to do: to watch the shrine maiden retreat for the table and her boobs slump, stretch and dangle below her as she leaned over to unscrew and dip her fingers in an unlabelled, earthenware jar. A cloying scent of coconut, underscored by mystery herbs, suffused the room’s tension-thick air.
And it was then, once miss Reimu once more swung toward him, tits shaking, palms rubbing the ointment on each other, that Gin’s fidelity truly, truly filed for that vacation it’d threatened taking for the last two days. And by the time the daring young priestess was pressing her sweaty bust to his naked skin, it was long aboard the express flight to lady Akyuu-land, where it was apt to hear all over again how she and Gin weren’t lovers and how the clown of a courier ought to look out for another girl once they were done screwing on the side. Miss Reimu, Gin thought, might be that girl. Miss Reimu was that girl now, looking markedly absorbed smearing coconut oil over his taut abdominals and flattening her supple tits against his chest. So absorbed, she only just noticed the courier’s arm snaking round her waist to pluck the belt from her bathrobe once said robe had fanned out to unveil her ample hips and the womanly wealth of pubic hair between.
“… Think I’ve pinned down the culprit,” announced miss Reimu, not vengefully, but with enough authority that Gin reined in his grasping fingers millimetres from her butt.
“… Yeah?” he breathed, palm itching for a handful of the lewd shrine maiden’s assets.
There was a delicious, nail-biting pause as miss Reimu licked the coconut concoction from one of her thumbs. “… Yup,” she said, grazing it down Gin’s stomach and hooking the band of his overstuffed underwear. “Here.”
Surprise lurched under the courier’s abs when the shrine maiden wrenched the band out, and their eyes were met with a full, unabashed erection that couldn’t have been harder and readier for bawdy exorcisms if miss Reimu had tied one of her sanctified ribbons around its base. Gin clutched his slippery self-restraint while miss Reimu denuded his throbbing manhood of its last vestige of decency. Which was to say, she hauled the underpants down his shaggy thighs until gravity conduced and dropped them on the floor. Then, the shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo dedicated the whole of her concentrated focus on the wayward dick which had not only come to no good inside a youkai’s mouth but disturbed her morning date with her taciturn boyfriend as well. It twitched, veiny and bellied, under her pettish scrutiny.
The half-nude Hakurei appeared as innocent as one of those nuns in training who year after year did nothing so much as everyone’s laundry, and then one day caused a stir with a forced maternity leave, when she cupped the curve near the top of Gin’s shaft in her oil-slick palm. A quiver of enjoyment juddered down his length, tensing his groin, pushing him harder against the pads of miss Reimu’s hand.
“This is a nice shape…” cooed the shrine maiden, pressing her stiff-tipped breasts at Gin’s chest and chiming in the course.
“… You’re nice shapes all over,” the gulping courier returned.
“… Too bad,” continued miss Reimu, with a slight undertone of disdain, “that you’d sooner waste it on a youkai. This is where the trouble is, you know? It’s in here, the impurity. I’m never wrong about these things. It’s a handsome cock, delivery man, but it’s tainted.”
The obscene address made Gin’s rowdy manhood flex – jump – and then slap the shrine maiden’s open palm on the descent. She headed off future such incidents by wrapping her slippery digits around its pulsing girth.
“… What should we do with it?” hazarded the courier, with great care nudging his hips forward and his hard-on – deeper into her grip.
“What indeed…?” wondered miss Reimu, in the fluent rhetoric of a woman who had the perfect recipe but wanted you to blow up a pot or two yourself as a learning experience.
It was up to Gin alone, her smile was telling, not to blow up in her hand instead.
( ) Those tits would save a soul today. ( ) What happened to rebounding…? ( ) A dashing escape was always in vogue.
Swinging the lead for now on an explicit answer, Gin set about first of all illustrating how best that problem may be worked out.
Steadily, inch after inch, the courier pushed his upraised manhood through the shrine maiden’s soft, feminine hold, the slickened insides of her palm and fingers caressing every bit to make it through. Miss Reimu said nothing of the slow, self-performed handjob, following it idly with an unconcerned expression – up, anyhow, until the middle point where, the tease inside perhaps winning out, she cruelly tightened her grip around the shaft. Gin let loose a strangled oath, having out of the perverse blue to thrust thrice as hard to get his erection to slide past the squeezing fingers.
He bottomed out in her unmoving hand, crotch bumping the edge of her palm, his whole length standing almost upright in her death-grip – an achievement considering his shape which was, to put it quite straight, a bow. Miss Reimu eyed the ruddy, tumid head and the no more tractable shaft, now coated in a film of shiny lube. Almost, and Gin could’ve heard the shrine maiden’s lips smack ajar as her gaze tumbled down to the base of his erection and her own ringed fingers – speculating, little doubt, what other receptive parts of her body she could have put in their place. Almost – but for his heart ramming on his ribs and the fervent heat exuding from his cuffed hard-on were turning his heed inside-out. Whether it was because miss Reimu’s voluptuous breasts were still mashed against his bare chest, because the coconut oil had in it some secret reagent or because her hand had felt just that good over, under and around his dick, Gin couldn’t, wouldn’t nor opted ever to tell… unless it were to lady Akyuu in the evening, if possible with her butt in his lap and her panties pulled aside.
And loyally he stood by that assertion… even if quite dishonourably he would rather have been lying down, watching miss Reimu do a belly-dance. Atop him. In the nude. And that enormous, red-white ribbon in her hair.
The shrine maiden’s scathing attention crawled up to his face again and her exhibitionist teats were pushed harder against his burly front when she breathed in to ask, “… Well? Ideas?”
The sweating courier knew above all else he was looking at the single mightiest human being in Gensokyo while seeing at the same time a young woman too aloof to confide she had an itch inside her belly that couldn’t be relieved with fingers alone. Admittedly he hadn’t ever lustred the former view all too well, having been elsewhere throughout all except two incidents miss Reimu had resolved, but the latter was plain and on hand, albeit not wholly, for being so focused on her bouncy assets and her grip on his man-wand, he’d neglected actually to place that hand anywhere on her. That horse might’ve long bolted, but Gin, just in case, shut the stable door – by drawing a half of the opened bathrobe aside and touching the shrine maiden’s smooth, flat tummy. Thrilling him something amazing, she flinched a little from the reciprocated contact.
Adoringly, he pressed down with two fingertips at a spot midway between her lush crotch and innocent bellybutton.
“In here… OK?” he suggested.
Miss Reimu’s homecoming scowl was as severe as it was convincing, leaving it thusly in the country of moderate prickliness. “… I’m not,” she censured, “going to have sex with you old man. No. No way in… nowhere. This is a cleansing, do you understand? Nothing, nnh, more.”
That last ultimatum had come with a hitch because someone had picked right then to lightly scrape the tips of their fingernails down the touchy shrine maiden’s belly, hip and thigh. That someone found themselves then recipient of a scorching, upturned glare and saw it for what it was: a plea saying, please do that more, please touch me, I’m turned on and don’t completely have it handled and might punch you for it later but right now please touch me more. The postscript underbite meaning, but give me an excuse, so I’ll feel less bad about that previous thing – pretty please? Or, I swear, I’ll punch you sooner than either of us would like.
And how someone could’ve deciphered all this from merely a glare was a question for the ages, but he had seen not dissimilar things before had the someone in the question, even if most of them in the past and mostly on other pastures. That, and her hand had never released his by now frankly a little numb manhood, which was a clue. Miss Reimu was still glaring daggers, yes she was, though upon inspection they might’ve been the stage play kind: with a hollow handle and a retracting blade. It was the fine difference between the glare of a woman who was simply angry and one who simply wanted you to know she was angry, and, on miss Reimu, the latter had an especial edge. It was nothing short of provocative. And magnetic.
Gin let himself be pulled along, in places quite literally. “… It’d be two fairies with one shoe, though, wouldn’t it?” he mused aloud. “You’d cleanse my down-there, and I’d give your down-there what that guy didn’t.”
A purblind little pause developed as the fuming shrine maiden chased the stab of his chin to the table. And then was itself chased by a cute little groan when she realised he was stabbing the space underneath.
“… So, you saw?” was its flustered follow-up.
“Heard,” corrected the courier. “The walls’re thin, and you weren’t exactly minding the volume, were you? It was bound to happen when someone happened by. That someone being, say, the delivery man. Me, in this instance.”
Miss Reimu clicked her tongue, irritated by the logic. “… I guess.”
“Although, if I might,” Gin added, “it’s a mite dodgy to do… well, that, when you’re waiting on a delivery. You were, weren’t you? Knew it was coming?”
It was precious. She, the wicked shrine maiden, who had him by short or, rightly, by the long and the curls, now herself was tarted up in a defensive frown. “Last couple,” she complained, “were left out front, by the offertory box. You know, ‘delivery man,’” she noted, sharper, “I should ask, actually: what were you doing with yours back here? Ah?”
“Well—” began Gin, both I wanted to see the shrine maiden of my dreams up close and There were three scary fairies swooping outside proffering themselves for the ensuing position, but instead the scrupulous courier in him said, “I wanted to see about payment.”
Miss Reimu glared on. “I paid when I made the order. What about it? Shall I dig up the slip?”
“No,” said Gin, who knew a thing or two about those, “not that. The runner’s fee, customs after the delivery. Standard fare. What, did no one tell you?”
He looked into her narrowed eyes. There was no catch. The shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo loured at him as though he was trying to diddle her and not in a pleasant way. “… No?” she said then. “First I’ve been advised.”
Ah, thought the worldly-wise courier. So, this is how that goes. And some words of it must’ve telepromptered on his face because the shrine maiden was suddenly almost up in it.
“You’re thinking,” she accused him; “you’re thinking, delivery man, that I’ve bribed somebody off – is that it? That I’ve paid your chums their ‘fees’ like – like this? Well, no! I haven’t! I’m a shrine maiden, not a courtesan.” There, the incensed, denuded and oiled-up miss Reimu must’ve retraced the few previous minutes and their goings-on in her head, since her pretty lips were drawn into a frustrated line. “… There may be circumstances, sure,” she confessed in the end, “and there may be an incident, but for now I’m doing what I’m doing because I want to, not for… other reasons. And, I guarantee you, I don’t do it with just anyone.”
“I could be just anyone,” Gin pointed out.
“Or you could be working under Akyuu, which hints at me you’re sensible,” miss Reimu disagreed, “or maybe you could be tall, not bad-looking and there when I’m having a backslide. Take your pick.”
“Which one gets a happy ending?” wondered the courier – to no effect but a wrinkle of the shrine maiden’s cute nose. He ironed it out with a hearty chuckle. “Well, if for nothing else,” he said a shade seriously, “then I’m glad not to be an eyesore, especially in yours, miss Reimu, since you’re fascinating yourself and I’ve fancied you for blasted years. So, in light of that—”
And here, in a turn-up for the books, though perhaps not one for lady Akyuu’s penmanship, the lowly courier seized the shrine maiden’s slender arm and wrenched it away from his turgid, throbbing erection. It got its moment of leeway, did the choked manhood, only for Gin to see it trapped once more, this time between miss Reimu’s silky navel and his own, by delving under the bathrobe for her hips and smushing them against his. A flash of doe reluctance later, and the sexy, standoffish shrine maiden braced her oily palms on the courier’s wide shoulders, pushing yet not pushing and squishing her pillowy tits even tighter to his bare front. Soft, plush, warm as nothing, with a self-possessed frown, miss Reimu was as marriable a figure as it was possible to be whilst flirting with an effective stranger and whilst being miss Reimu. Gin wasn’t concerned; he slithered his hands around to the shrine maiden’s veiled ass which, albeit smaller than Yamame’s, not as springy as Ashi’s nor noble as lady Akyuu’s, had all the same its own forbidden charm that made him want to come around another day and fondle it under miss Reimu’s religious uniform.
He did fondle it now, a hasty sample for the future, all the while grinding his stiff manhood on her smooth, hot belly, marvelling how much hotter it had to be on the inside.
“So, in light of that, my dear miss Reimu,” he repeated in his lowest, huskiest voice. “… Can we fuck?”
It was a line to break either the ice or the icebreaker, and certainly something was cracked behind miss Reimu’s eyes when the proposition crashed on the seawall of her discipline. There was a batting of those keen eyes, an opening of those pretty lips, and then the shrine maiden pushed far enough away from the raucous courier to stare down her cleavage at his long, hard and eager offering below. And it must’ve entered miss Reimu’s head, though he wasn’t as vulgarly sculpted as her quiet boyfriend under the table, that there were perks too to having the rest of the man attached to his relevant bits, cardinally if said man looked like he could do his share of moving. The enticement of having Gin do just so someplace very close to her nipped her bottom lip and left her fidgeting with the answer.
Once it slipped, it was uttered at a very high speed and with a meaningful pinch of Gin’s bare shoulders.
“… All right, fine,” said miss Reimu. And then, rushing on, “I don’t need to say—?”
“You don’t,” Gin assured her. “I’m not new to this. Old man, yeah? Kissing fine? Want to do it here, or…?”
There was a shake of the shrine-maidenly head. “Mouth’s off limits. Here will do, though. I like it standing up anyway.”
Gin sketched a rather grave nod. “Stand-up is my forte. At least, so someone tells me.”
“… Hilarious,” mocked miss Reimu. “One more thing, delivery man—”
“—delivery man,” she stressed. “I’ve a rin no tama inside. Careful not to bruise your tip. Slow and not too deep – get it?”
The delivery man delivered a dumb blink. “… A what?”
“Ben-Wa?” miss Reimu tried. “A Geisha ball. A toy. This—” she demonstrated, tweaking her waist side to side. And out tinkled the familiar chime. “… I say toy, too, but it’s really more so you don’t get me pregnant. A charm, if you like. I guess. Anyway, pace yourself and nothing should break.”
Up on the courier’s fatuous face, the news was taking its sarcastic toll. It was enough sometimes to have caught out a lovely, if reticent girl taking precautions for a sexy contingence; it was another catch altogether to find out she’d been ready and willing since before the sex was even in the room, let alone on the table. Miss Reimu had been happily chiming her toy-slash-charm at him from the word go (in truth: “Four”); more tellingly, she hadn’t bothered to remove it when retrieving her tools which meant, in fisherman’s shorthand, she’d been trawling for his eel from the moment Gin had entered her waters. Or, not to put too thick a shine on it, that she’d hoped for them to fuck at some point. And that was heady stuff.
Unhappily for him, the methods plied by miss Reimu meant the plan to go six inches deep was effectively deep sixed, or else to get his dick rolled into an accordion between a Geisha ball and a hard thrust. And that wasn’t as much heady as it headed the whole thing off at the best pass.
“… Could you not take it out?” asked Gin, feeling boner-deep and uncharacteristically disfranchised.
A minute hesitation softened miss Reimu’s eyes, but the word that rode on its tail was, “No.”
“Is it a dangerous day?”
“… No,” she admitted. “No, it may be,” was the second opinion. “I don’t know. It doesn’t matter; it’s not coming out. No way. Take it or leave it, delivery man.”
Gin growled his frustration. Miss Reimu’s face was full of impatience tinged with stubbornness. It seemed the long and the short of it that he wouldn’t get to fill the shrine maiden’s consecrated womb with his thick impurity.
He was naturally disappointed. And not a trivial little indignant.
( ) “Then the deal if off, Hakurei.” ( ) “You’ll regret this… but OK.”
Ayyyy dem 'just the tip' boys are out. Look man, this chick needs some tough love. She's out here squatting on some shrine in a forest shoving prayer beads up her snatch. I think Gin should (very briefly) rise above his innate desire to unga bunga smash the most powerful pussy in Gensokyo to share with her the amenities of modern civilization. If weak minded men keep letting her go unchecked, eventually she end up like that crazy forest witch.
>>40277 Oh yes. This would be a good time to note... as if it wasn't enough apparent already... that, yes, all these stories do take place in the same, shared foOlREAVlErse. Go figure. >>40269 Do that again and I will wear your ass as a hat.
Indignation, of course, was a weak habit, laid by the heels with ease by greater things. Say, the Hakurei’s own needy, indignant look. The shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo was hot to the touch and she hadn’t even required a blanket. If some of her regions were telling, and they certainly were loquacious, then miss Reimu was more turned on than her happenstance corruptionist: eyes afire, breathing terse and shallow, the baby pink tips of her breasts thoroughly standing on ends and, though the landlady had a veritable garden down in the valley, the treasure under the table could attest: it was no less prepared for vigorous ploughing than the rest of her landscape. And if miss Reimu’s self-control had been any looser, and he’d bet it wasn’t, even now, it would be the work of minutes to talk her into doing something very irresponsible. The sheer, female lust emanating from her body was an unspoken invitation.
Gin sucked it in through his nostrils. She smelled of sweat, coconut and foreplay.
And it was then, as the shrine maiden’s pheromones battered down his abiding principles, that he compromised – accepting he hadn’t truthfully known miss Reimu. There was the laughing, tizzy girl in red and white stuck between the folds of his brain, still redder and whiter than bleached out, and then there was the mature, if still youthful woman who’d talked him into talking her into promiscuous sex not fifteen minutes away from their first real conversation. It was something that warranted reconciling soon or late – otherwise, Gin imagined, there was an awful lot of dissonance and general boozing in his future. The facts were warm and undeniable in his hands. He might not like miss Reimu. No. He’d drunk an insidious like from Ashi’s lips and was old-fashionably enamoured with lady Akyuu, but had only a remote and spontaneous adoration for the Hakurei shrine maiden. He hadn’t, as of yet, confronted that adoration with reality.
He only, just – though definitely not only just – wanted to fuck her. And so much, at evident least, was requited.
Somehow or other, that made the whole non-procreative, half-depth clause of it to sting a drat lot less. He’d still waive a fee or three for the opportunity to give miss Reimu’s womb something to accommodate, but knowing he wouldn’t then have to cover for it from his own pocket was an antivenin in and of itself. And if that spoke ill of him, then woe befall the Hakurei who would twist his excuse-making arm.
Gin Akamatsu, with the Hieda, a run-of-the-mill runner currently rubbing his stiff erection on the Hakurei shrine maiden’s cute, nude bellybutton, gripped her no more clothed buttocks and smiled like what the hoped was a wit and not half a one.
“… You’ll regret this, you know, miss,” he said at length, “but, you’re right. I’ll blasted well take it.”
The shrine maiden’s replying glare was wilful and irresistible when in the same frame as her glamorous bust. “I’ve never,” she insisted, “never regretted a single thing in my life, old man. So beat it.”
The (not so) old courier man snickered. “You haven’t the dimmest how hard you’re making this.”
He let the joke slide – explicitly across her bare navel. A glossy trace on her flushed skin did the office of a laugh-track. “… Cocksure women,” he translated, laying the store by blunter words, “get me going like a hungry fox. And you, miss Reimu, are extremely sure of your… cock.” When his comedic hook found no purchase on the sexy shrine maiden’s mouth, he hammered out a groan. “… To be bluff,” he gave up, “I’m turned on by confidence. I love it when a girl knows what she wants, particularly if she also says it. And those particularly confident,” he added, arousal latching on, “make me want to put a baby in them, so they’ve no choice except to go steady with me. Is that weird?”
It was weird, even if it went unsaid. Gin understood it because the shrine maiden pursed her lips and refused to answer. Or it might’ve been something different on the whole, since then she skimmed her oil-slick hands from his shoulders to lay them flat on his billowing chest. Gin felt himself strain. It’d been stupefying, holding the busty miss Reimu tight, and he found more than half a mind to do it again: to pull the shrine maiden in close and spread her soft tits even flatter on his front. He didn’t, for reason of another half egging him on to use this moment of inattention to grasp her by the thigh, hitch her leg up and give her womanhood something to ravish right here in the middle of the room. Seized between the two, it was everything he could muster: to hold the front and not to look too torn.
Miss Reimu speaking up was an unforeseen succour. “… Yes,” she sighed. “Yes. You’re weird, delivery man. But…”
“But?” urged Gin, the surprised fingers of his right hand caught already absenting themselves with her thigh.
“But there’s no chance in hell of me getting with child,” obliged the shrine maiden. “So, it’s absolutely safe for us to…” she tasted the word like a mysterious food, “… to fuck. In fact, let’s; I’ve had about enough of tiptoeing.”
According to Gin’s sensibilities he’d been outright grappling miss Reimu’s deceptively child-bearing hips, and there was no ned to his pique when she appeared to slip his arms at no overt difficulty. It did, however, meet its quite racier match once the shrine maiden whisked out of her undone bathrobe, exposing her whole, faintly tan and duly mature body. Gin had enjoyed but a flash of the ripe femininity of it ahead she walked it under the nearby wall – propped on it by one slim hand – and leaned halfway over to present her smooth, modest and stark-naked rear. And, moreover, the not-so-smooth yet equally defenceless treasure below. The plucky courier stood there, transfixed by her nudity, while the shrine maiden protector of Gensokyo bent lower still, sneaking her spare hand between her bare thighs, over the bush of dark pubes visible even from up above, and down to her reddish, swollen petals.
And then, for nothing but to ram the seduction home, she spread them out as wide as they stretched.
Gin swallowed hard. Her walls were bright, salmon-pink and muggy from arousal. They puckered and contracted and promised to leave the courier’s eager tool even slimier and worse for wear than the salacious toy he’d unwittingly extorted them to surrender. A trickle of vaginal fluid ran down miss Reimu’s stiff clitoris as she held herself open – soon to drip, stretch into a thin string and patter messily on the straw-mat floor. It was spilled ink (or coconut oil) for surrealism; and Gin had no recourse but to acknowledge his excitement had been a comfortably recent thing beside a girl’s who had been masturbating, interrupted, teased, made to fuss over a half-naked man, eyed up, felt up and then slowly coerced into ill-merited sex. Lady Akyuu might’ve been hot and bothered the night Gin had first scratched that itch for her; miss Reimu was a level beyond. She was hot and furious. And if her fretful, dribbling womanhood wasn’t enough of a tell, then the murderous, backward glance she cast over her shoulder was as good an air raid siren.
Gin breathed in, remembering sharply to do so and how conducive it was to, well, everything else, including what then proceeded. It was a few steps to the shrine maiden’s stuck-out rear and then it was no steps to the shrine-maiden’s stuck-out rear, and Gin was indulging the first wanton idea to pump to his head from his bulging dick. The idea was to grab and tweak one of miss Reimu’s humble ass-cheeks while levelling his erection at her sopping entrance. And then to tempt suicide.
“… Miss?” he teased. “I’m about to go in, so, if you’ve not had enough necking, now would be—”
The Hakurei shrine maiden actually swore, bucking her wide hips and nearly causing their genitals to kiss prematurely. “I was about to top off when you knocked!” she growled. “I haven’t been with a real man for a month and you’re just my gods damn type! I don’t need no gods damned necking! Get it? Just… fucking fuck me already! Fuck!”
Overwhelmed beyond replying, or even processing fully what he’d need to reply to in the first place, Gin flashed his tongue across his teeth – nodded – and placed the tip of his erect tool square between miss Reimu’s pink, outstretched walls. They yielded to no more than a prod; and his whole, overtaxed length shuddered in anticipation as the shrine maiden’s sultry pussy (it was more than fuzzy after all) welcomed him inside. The shrine maiden (was she at this point?) herself released her spread labia, letting them enclose and peel the sheath of skin from Gin’s plump glans. Once the latter was safely stowed – wrapped in warm, wet goodness and at no risk of popping out – Gin relocated his hands to complete the insertion with the aid of miss Reimu’s ample hips. The Hakurei hung her pretty head, blearily ogling her own, drooping breasts, while her pussy was filled to the slimy brim by the “old man” and his thick, rugged cock.
Glibber than his tongue, centimetre behind rock-hard centimetre, vein after bulging vein, more and more of Gin’s delighted manhood was swallowed up by the Hakurei’s soft, drooling labia. A ways in, and out of nowhere the hot, velvety walls cramped all around him, milking from Gin a startled groan and a spurt of overdue precum from his youkai-tainted dick. It mingled with the wealth of miss Reimu’s shrine-maidenly juices, only to be then pushed farther up toward her womb when the courier restituted his cracked poise. It hardly registered he was now living in a world where slutty priestesses spread their legs for passing-by couriers; the sensation of this one’s needy insides squirming around his shaft and coddling his bare glans stripped him of most coherent thoughts but for those of seeing those greedy pussy lips wrapped snugly around the base of his meat.
Which – to, going by their shared vocalisation, mutual distress – wasn’t meant to be.
He’d nigh on forgotten the whole contraceptive caveat, but there it blasted well was. A full inch from hilting, hampered up to now by nothing except miss Reimu’s submissive walls, the tip of his manhood now came upon something hard, round and not at all a part of regular anatomy. It couldn’t be; its sides were smooth, rounded and spherical, and miss Reimu was a human, giving it thus no right to be anything else. It was the Geisha ball. And it made Gin want to strangle whoever had conceived that Geisha needed balls.
“Y’really—” he began, and faltered. The shrine maiden’s pussy clung to him as he set about the backstroke, every inch to pull free coated in copious girl-lube. “… Y’really should’ve taken the blasted thing out,” Gin finished, reversing the thrust and sinking his manhood back among the drenched warmth of miss Reimu’s vagina until hindered again.
The shrine maiden vouchsafed nothing above a quiet moan for this violation of her sacred womanhood, even if her body betrayed what she was: over the Moon to be fucked from behind like the courtesan she’d sworn she wasn’t. Her pussy was squeezing by the third push, trembling by the seventh, and her large, heavy tits were now swinging gently back and forth in rhythm with miss Reimu’s hips trailing after each of Gin’s slow, exiting strokes. There had been no lie to what she’d said; the lusty shrine maiden had indeed been on the edge before and must’ve stayed there, putting on appearances, all throughout their (un)professional flirting. Now she had a “real man” giving her lonely bits a lewd massage, lastly that barrier was off. Miss Reimu dispensed with it by crawling up the wall to stand a little straighter, causing the next thrust to ride Gin’s dick all along the weakest area of her pussy. Her legs juddered, knees crumpling inward, and the courier had to sling an arm under her chest, under the dangling breasts, to hold her upright.
She jabbed her nails into his wrist as thanks. “Nnf, no,” she gasped, only now deigning to reply. “No, hffa, way. I should’ve… sucked you off and been done—”
The hot air squealed out of her chest when Gin hauled her upper body and hugged it to his, catching the shrine maiden’s long, mussy hair between them. Her suddenly unoccupied arm shot back to touch his hip as though to stop him, but none too ably; the obstruction hadn’t been mounted ahead the courier was mounting her: finally getting to squish her modest butt against his waist and hear another stifled moan as the bare tip of his cock was mashed into her pussy’s front wall. Gin pulled it out, no more than one or two inches – then shoved it back in, slamming his hips into miss Reimu’s butt and his rigid cock – into her special place. There was no holding in her blissed-out voice this time; and as for the courier, he got a nice, dominant thrill himself, finding the Geisha ball no longer in reach at this acute of an angle. He could pound the shrine maiden till her buttocks were red and face no threat to his inguinal cohesion. Sure, the bottom third of his shaft would have to do without miss Reimu’s sugary walls or with her sleek thighs alone, but it was a small bump in the road to being able to molest her quivering womanhood with impunity.
And he did hurry on to molest it – push after push after push – ruthless as the inner cavemen he’d thought hushed: tugging his hips back then jostling them back forward, scooping out miss Reimu’s honeyed folds then spearing her special place on the return, her tightening walls scrubbing his glans all over and urging it deeper inside. That was treachery; and Gin was wiser than to bend her back over and try to batter the Geisha ball down with his over-enthused dick. What he wasn’t wiser than to dare was wrapping his arms tight around the unresisting shrine maiden and jamming his nose among the hairs on her nape. She didn’t smell of much except what he’d scented already: sweat, coconut, woman; still the act of sniffing her neck while railing her from behind was a punt of pressure to his loins. He curbed his motions for the moment, dick throbbing, gushing fresh precum into miss Reimu’s already teeming vagina.
The moment proved too long for the horny shrine maiden who, making an unhappy sound, began moving on her own: thrusting out her butt and sliding her pussy up and down his stiff cock all by herself. Gin, declassed to the role of the toy he’d stood in for, let her at it for a time – enjoying the wiggling of her butt and the desperate attempts at rubbing her own sensitive spots. Once he remarried his movements to hers, her slippery walls wrung around his top half in surprised glee – their pervy owner going taut from her kissable neck down to her littlest toes. It didn’t stay her from smushing her ass into the courier’s hips a heartbeat later or, in the following, from grinding her vulnerable places on his cock’s arched underbelly. Gin sawed his hard-on back and forth inside her – slightly varying the tempo each trip for no reason but to keep her guessing. And she kept guessing, quiet and insatiable, fighting the courier’s dick for the orgasm his unsought visit had denied her.
And then, without any sort of forewarning, between one wet thrust and the next, she got it. Almost too soon, and almost Gin would’ve missed it. He certainly had to start with, caught up in the momentum – until the tell-tale quaking of her thighs woke him up also to how his manhood was being vised inside her pussy. And there, right there as he willed himself still so as not to overstimulate and hurt her, never mind himself, Gin Akamatsu discovered something few souls in Gensokyo were apt to know.
Miss Reimu was a squirter.
It was nothing spectacular, nowhere on the level of those pornos lady Akyuu had been so curious about. All the same, there was no confusing the warm trickle now running down Gin’s shaft and family jewels as well as the shrine maiden’s trembling legs. It spilled on and soaked the straw-mat floor, guaranteeing to be one female dog to wash out later, but for now an unambiguous sign of her otherwise modestly voiceless climax. Gin, though not a trifle dissatisfied being left high and dry, trussed her up by the floppy hips and shoulders. Miss Reimu continued to come for a long while, as backed-up as she’d implied and more – only the end of the torrent from her gratified privates and a relieved sigh from her throat a minute later telling she’d finally had her fill.
Gin eased his lifesaver’s hold a fraction and then put his mouth as near to the shrine maiden’s flushed ear as he presumed. Which placed his lips smack dab on the earlobe.
“… All good, miss?” he asked in the gentlest whisper he had right then.
Miss Reimu gave up a pleased and not at all gentle shiver. “… Wonderful,” she softly said back. The afterglow was doing marvels for her voice; it was rich, breathy and even sexier than she’d ever let it turn before. “Good… hff, job, delivery man.”
“I haven’t gotten off yet,” Gin said with a suggestive edge. “Another round, do you reckon?”
The shrine maiden considered, in the meanwhile tweaking her waist as though to feel out the dick still lodged at full span in her drenched insides. “… All right,” she consented. “Let’s – before I cool down and ‘reckon’ better.”
“Think you could take the ball out now?” Gin hazarded.
In his arms, the shrine maiden squirmed in halting indecision. Somewise, even not seeing her face, the courier could tell very well she was licking her lips. “… No,” was the anyway ultimate answer.
Gin loosed a groan. “Come on—”
“No,” reiterated the Hakurei. “No. Unless…”
He steeled his loins. “… Yeah?”
“… Unless,” miss Reimu postulated, “you get me off again. Then, I’ll take it out. All right? Then – and not before. Want to come inside me? Work for it, delivery man.”
The first thought which bubbled in head like the tonic to his gin was: Oh, fuck yes. He could blasted well do that. It’d be easy. Chuck the Hakurei on her ass, give her a sample of what lady Akyuu and Ashi had taught his fingers, make her eat her words…
The second thought was: You’ll really knock her up, you tub-thumping dickhead. And while that might’ve been welcome last week, it’d have been before his young mistress had hinted at a lengthier affair being within the reach of possibility and before Ashi had booked him for a future fling. Now? He’d be a right feckless bastard, wouldn’t he, to jump ship to another girl, let alone with an anchor in the shape of a pregnant belly. At this, a third thought chimed in: Well, aren’t we selfish AND a moron. The Hakurei wasn’t dumb; whatever the “circumstances” she’d mentioned, she was plainly experienced (“where and how” was a question for another drink) and hadn’t gotten with child yet. She wouldn’t have proffered him a creampie if she hadn’t baked in another failsafe. It was Breadmaking 101.
Thoughts first and third glanced at the second and, feeling cocky, gave it each a condescending smile. It wasn’t much anyway. Just morality staking a misplaced bet. Miss Reimu, on the other hand, was on a winning streak.
“A—” began Gin, somewhat naively forgetting that the house always won in the end.
What it won was ostensibly a cleaner floor, because the courier had scarcely unsealed his mouth to inform the loose shrine maiden what she was in for when the house smashed open its nearby door.
Who stood framed in it, letting in the Winter chill, was a small, blond-haired figure. She got catalogued under “witch” by Gin’s startled brain almost at once because she checked out: pointy hat, apron, chequered scarf, dumpy black dress, broom in one hand. That last one notwithstanding, it could maybe have been a fairy after rolling through somebody’s Winter laundry. She anyhow overtook the doorstep like she co-habited the place.
“Hey, Reimu—” was what she managed to say…
… before her golden eyes fell on the naked shrine maiden, her shamelessly bared tits, the puddle of sexual fluids on the floor and the tall man mounting her doggy-style like so shaggy a beast.
“Aah—!” the witch, courier and shrine maiden all exclaimed in unison.
And the rest, as those booted from betting establishments were wont to say afterwards, was a blur.
And it didn’t fade (or focalise, as it were) until Gin’s feet were treading once more on the town’s familiar cobbles. The outward-and-return to the Hakurei hill had taken a peckish bite out of the courier’s timetable; standers-by, shoppers, overlate workers and others of that kidney were pullulating in the streets. Gin did his best impression of a trundling stone.
A sense of fairness told him to feel cheated. He gave it a passing grade. It hadn’t taken the same study in objectivism he had, and it showed. Outside the confines of his pants, the situation was totalling rather bright. He’d conducted the task, got apprised of a problem, then had it raised up and checked-up on in a perfectly agreeable fashion, something not many may boast of their problems, especially when relying on priesthood sooner than therapy. Admittedly miss Reimu had used of his problem to solve one of her own; surely, though, that was the give-and-take part of it all. The fact he hadn’t polished his own edge off and had had to run back home with a somewhat cold and damp undercarriage hadn’t been her fault… altogether.
No, she hadn’t had to panic when the witch had bullishly invited herself in; no, she hadn’t had to yell at him to get back inside his clothes and leave once the witch had given no signage of leaving herself. Yes, she could’ve listened when said witch had mildly appealed not to kick him out. Could have. Gin couldn’t begrudge the shrine maiden her explosive insistence either way that cookie had crumbled. There was after all a shade of a difference between your friend walking in on you masturbating, your friend walking in on you masturbating with the help of a stranger, and your friend walking in on you masturbating with the help of a stranger while you’re a shrine maiden and the products of your recent orgasm are pooled between your feet. It was a question of degrees – not subject matter. And Gin grasped plenty well how that could’ve spun miss Reimu’s dial all the way around. Some taboos had beyond a doubt been broken there. It was all very understandable.
That was outside his pants. Inside, he was antsier than an Amazon rainforest and certainly than miss Reimu’s before his intervention.
Gin tingled his way to the bachelors’ yard, where he washed his affected bits and switched out of the less-than-immaculate undergarments. From there, he tingled slightly less back to the Hieda estate. There was nothing to deposit with the yardman, so, walking the walk, the courier cast his booted steps indoors and toward mistress Akyuu’s workplace. The mansion’s cosily warm hallways were depopulated in defiance of their comforts, most maids either out on errands, in the kitchens or the servants’ annexe, and other runners already dispersed around the town by this hour. Gin nursed a bit of a hope as an effect of this, rounding the last corner before his fair young lady’s office at an optimistic skid.
And then, glimpsing who was right then leaving said office, nodding profusely, he pitched himself down a nearby side corridor like a sack of potatoes that strolled alone at night and owed somebody a lot of money.
The guest had a brown robe and a blond ponytail and more meat on her front than a yakitori stand in season. To borrow sister’s Ichirin’s particular vernacular, it was gods-damned, bloody Yamame.
Oh, sodomy, thought Gin, except he hadn’t thought “sodomy,” and what he had thought would have wilted a satori’s ears. He’d forgotten the young mistress’s hobbyhorse couldn’t stand the sight of an uneaten carrot. And it was a blasted fast-working horse to boot.
Gin sucked on his tongue. The busty clothier hadn’t heard his self-back-alley-kidnapping, or if she had then by the aural clues she had no qualms passing by the scene of the crime. It wasn’t at all whom the courier wanted to meet, not in his current state… even if parts of him wouldn’t have minded a closer visual. Those, of course, were the parts which crowded a conversation something awful, shouting rude commentary from the side-lines, then legged it back up into the abdomen after shoes got involved.
… Good heavens, did they have the perfect excuse, though.
( ) Had something to return, after all! ( ) No! Good boys stayed put and waited till the bad youkai went away!
(X) No! Good boys stayed put and waited till the bad youkai went away!
An excuse that would at best have had his cheek hand-stamped or the boot put in by the clothier’s boulder of a boyfriend at worst. And boy, had those boots been big.
In addition, the Rube Goldberg dominoes of logic were knocking about in his head. There was an inevitability in any conversational path he might take with Yamame; they all crisscrossed on the tiny town of Ashi. To restore the nicked bra where it belonged he would perforce need to explain whence it had come; to explain that, Ashi would as a necessary consequence have to be brought up; mentioning Ashi, meanwhile, was tantamount to reintroducing himself as the man who’d peeped along with the younger earth spider while the rotund clothier had had her huge ass spanked and her throat stuck chock-full of cock. And this was a topic Gin would absolutely not eagerly strop his tongue on over a coarse drink, provided Yamame’s lover wasn’t within booting range, which Gensokyo’s spontaneous nurture of tsukumogami ensured would never be the case. Those things could give even Gin a run for his money, for no money. Just for kicks.
Above that, for some unmanly reason, he found the idea of being found out as Ashi’s fling by her older sister to plop a fearful, leaden lump down his stomach.
Gin swallowed. The appetite for gallivanting with sexy clothiers had drained, leaving only that for doing it instead with lady Akyuu. Which was the cause of why, then, Gin gave his hidey-hall’s wall a humanoid lean-to. If the passing-by Yamame had the misfortune to peek into one of the side corridors, she would see but a mysterious stranger in a dusty hanten, the sort apt to stand around in dark alleys peddling suspect goods or, in Gin’s instance, likewise compliments. He squeezed his eyes shut, immersing himself in the role. Yes, ma’am; absolutely, ma’am; no, ma’am. Only genuine, bona-fide blarney here. Tall girls, short girls, wide girls, narrow girls, legs as long as the ground or terminating at the knee. We’ll levitate before we discriminate!
And yes, there came Yamame; and no, she didn’t stop for a purchase, opting to scurry on down the main hall, likely for the exit and, if Ashi’s assessment had had a grain of truth in it, back to work at the textile mill. Gin peeked out after the woman and her plump derriere, which she, despite the voluminous clothing, definitely still had. There was a pronounced sideways component to each of her virile steps: hips swaying left and right with enough pep to embarrass a sailor. Turn that heading ninety degrees, give her a minute, and then she would downright put him to shame.
Good heavens, Gin capitulated. He was envious. That woman had ass for hours.
He, however, hadn’t a thousandth that long to admire its motions. Yamame skirted (or robed, shoed and ponytailed, rather) the corner and, like her younger sister before, vanished behind implacable architecture. And the courier felt he might’ve been dropped into Gensokyo from planet Oaf because, unless extraordinary commissions were placed, he may not soon again chance on the bodacious clothier away from prying boyfriends’ ears. Or, another probability told, soon at all.
Contemplating a life of ownership of an old spider-lady’s bra, Gin Akamatsu quit his concealment, cut across to the young mistress’s office door and rapped out on it the traditional beat of Here’s Johnny!
An unconcerned “Come on in!” sounded from the other side. And Gin, axing other thoughts, came in.
A preoccupied lady Akyuu presided over her paper fastness, much the same she had near morning, except the rice cake – which had become history – and a handful unbound sheets covered in longhand – which were about to. The young mistress glanced a pinch of attention off of the courier’s appearance ahead going back to fan the apparently still-wet ink of the notes with one pale hand. Gin had seen her expression. It’d had a lot to say about humanlike youkai.
“… Gin,” she said nevertheless. “You were… a while. Trouble on the road, I hope… not?”
“Nope. None. The Hakurei had… guests,” excused himself Gin, fine print positively laying siege to the words. “Please, don’t ask, mistress; I’ll tell you another day. Over tea, if I can.”
Lady Akyuu looked up, raising a brow or two but no more. “… Very well,” she yielded. “I trust, aside from that, that everything else went swimmingly? Are you fit for longer runs, do you measure? Since I have a few for you here that shall be a test to the thesis.”
“I measure pretty well against most things,” quipped Gin, not half as deliberate as he’d have preferred.
The impish young Hieda snickered anyway. “Yes, I’ll warrant,” she chipped in her own dirty yen. “Splendid, excellent, Gin. Then this is what there is today.” There was an overall interesting motion when the young mistress reached under her seat to retrieve a trio of orange-marked invoices. She’d really laid them aside for him. “A bundle of fabrics and crafts farrago for a house close by that shop in the Forest I would have dispatched you to yesterday. Yes, it is a youkai,” she overtook Gin’s questions, “and yes, she is a patron. You may have met her, even; for a doll-maker, she is exceptionally sane and sociable. This—” she waved the second sheet, “—is for someone styling themselves Green Aiko, or Aiko of the Green, and a student to one Toyosatomimi Miko. The Taoist. You know Her Eminence; we lost our last yardman to her; did you know that?”
“Huh,” said Gin. He hadn’t heard but neither would have put it past the man to be enticed by the colours.
“Quite aggravating,” agreed lady Akyuu. “At any rate, I gather that you would be to carry a sack of seeds and saplings to a drop-off point along the road to Myouren and then… give a pre-agreed signal of some sort? I haven’t an idea; the depot crew will clue you in. And thirdly, I have here a piece for someone wishing to remain unnamed, which, given… well, everything about this… I fain well understand. It’s medicine,” she went on to add, registering the tectonic activity on Gin’s forehead. “It’s medicine, Gin, and – I can tell by this dainty ‘Y’ signed – also she wants to meet you outside of town. At a way-shrine to Moriya – which, yes, I appreciate is a stretch, but where I shall, coincidentally, be sending you along with a delivery on the morrow. So, there. You may extrapolate the rest by yourself.”
Gin didn’t, at least not yet. He knew to his cost that lady Akyuu’s extrapolating radar operated at full power in work hours and could pop a kernel of corn half a Gensokyo away. But the orders hadn’t sounded too fishy, which ought to have been enough for Gin’s mostly landlocked soul. There were still conversational whirlpools he wanted to dip his toes in, but years of careful splashing had taught there was a sequence to these things with lady Akyuu.
First order of business: business. Second order: pleasure. Third: the scarcening of self. He set his mind.
( ) Green goods for green girls.* ( ) Medicine for a dismayed unmentionable.** ( ) Appliances for a pretty puppeteer.***
* A ghost may come out. ** Something like a ghost will come out. *** Nothing naughty will come out, save the puppeteer.
>>40296 All right. I’ll feel like a dumbass supreme, but… Horses like carrots. “Hobbyhorse” is a term for a person’s fixation or, indeed, hobby. Akyuu’s is interviewing and figuring out youkai. Yamame’s presence in town is the carrot.
That picture does despicable things to my lower body, but as she lacks a lower body of her own, I can be assured the correct choice was made. In other words: If she doesn't have legs, she won't get a man's eggs.
“This—” Gin plucked an invoice from the clutches of an uncertain future and those of the young mistress. He insinuated it down a pocket of his hanten with overdone surreptition. “I reckon,” he felt obliged to explain, “this’s the least like to get dirt on me, see.”
It was a protracted second ahead the joke landed. Lady Akyuu puffed a snicker. “Pff. Yes, that would be,” she returned, filing away the remaining orders, “as the cliché goes, your funeral. No?”
“Well, were I to take the graveyard shift,” said Gin, “then I might do all the others yet.”
An expensive fountain pen was raised across the young lady’s lips to bisect a lovely, lenient smile. “Well played,” it was granted. “Small chance, however, for such an eventuality. I was only withholding these for your pickings; the next outrunner to make their rounds gets the dirty job. And the other one. Traffic must flow, notwithstanding our personal… commitment. Are we understood, Gin Akamatsu?”
Gin’s chin was nudged up and down, an assenting nod attached to the pointy end. It’d been occasionally difficult to remember, when things flowed and work was happening, that it was, indeed, happening to others as well. Lady Akyuu ensured it did. It was her own bit of mundane magic; you’d at times need a lawyer’s eye to notice the haymow of paperwork change from “today’s” to “tomorrow’s, but that’s today already, old boy,” but that was how it was done best. Things were managed. Things were managed, moreover, so far under everyone else’s noses they could keep them to the grindstone ruling out cellulose contamination. An ordinary man, a species including one Gin Akamatsu, may need to stand well back to get the whole family business picture into view short of eyestrain; lady Akyuu’s eyes, by contrast, were everything but ordinary or male.
And, currently, they were giving him a clever little look. “Was there,” she wondered aloud, “something else to discuss, outrunner Gin?”
Gin coughed and held himself taller, a common lapse among men who already knew first when it was raining. “Yes, actually,” he presumed, “there was. Something… or someone… I brushed by on the road here: round, blond thing, pretty, legs aplenty, naughty rumours about her…?”
There was a mental neigh and a buck, and then the eldest daughter of the Hieda smoothed down a burgeoning smirk. “Aah, I see,” she granted; “there was that, yes. Legs aplenty, why, indeed.”
“So, was she?” the courier wanted to know. “The Yamame? From the Goddesses’ Mount?”
With upmost manners, the young mistress gathered up her notes on the youkai spider and flicked them Gin’s way. “Yes, I am thrilled to say, and,” she confessed, “less thrilling, we have both nastily misjudged her. She is not a simple soul; she’s elementally sentimental. And as for your reckoning, Gin,” she added, in tones reserved for words like harrumph, “no, she isn’t an assaying youkai pervert. She believes very much she is in love. Or acts it convincingly enough. That man you spied her frolicking with? That must have been the boy – the household’s errant eldest son. Naoto, was the name she gave: again and again, as a matter of fact. I surmise we got his age wrong… if not else little factoids.”
“Uh-huh,” acknowledged Gin, for lack of more dignified terms.
“Quite. At any rate,” lady Akyuu went on, “while there was, indisputably, a story there, and I do now have the shorter long of it, I ought to sleep on whether publicising it now would be the prudent course. It’s finished; it’s contained, and I ill wish to stir that teacup when our spider youkai is so frankly passionate about her probation here… never mind this Naoto man. I could feel my teeth cavitating when she spoke his part in it, Gin. If it isn’t love, well then, I am in need of re-education as a writer. This applies to you as well; I trust you’ll not blab this to your sot friends the moment you knock back a dead soldier? It is overall a sensitive case, you do realise?”
And Gin shook his head, reassuring, “No, no. I mean, yes. Absolutely. I would feel kind of bad, now we’ve genned up on the details.” And he was thinking, Well, no, I already do feel kind of bad, because he did, in fact, already feel kind of bad, and there were other thoughts he’d sooner not than revisit, such as: Since I returned your bra, could you show me how you put it on, please? I won’t tell. The indistinct honour of bold voyeurism, Gin owned up to himself, somewhat lost its glint beside the glowing dishonour of sticking a foot in the doorway of love. There were Fates for folks who did such things, the least of which was a peg-leg and a lifetime of freebooting on the seven seas. It had to be a wreck for the ship hailed Spidertits. “… Yanno, though,” he suggested then, steering onto flatter spiders waters, “this does stand to mean I’ve won our wager.”
Cooler than a refrigerated cucumber salad, lady Akyuu brushed the hair back from her temples. “… Wager?”
Gin took a brazen forward step. “On our Yamame being the Yamame,” he explained, as offhand as a jab among friends. “I betted a kiss it was; didn’t hear a peep to the dissenting. While we were debating? Yesterday? Surely, I was the inebriated party – not you, mistress.”
Not a trace, not a blush of a bother touched the young lady’s face. “Oh,” she said, navelling the long-legged courier, on account eyeing him would’ve given her a crick in her neck. “And where,” she asked the front of his coat, “if I should dare stall, did you want this kiss, Gin?”
“… Where?” he repeated, nonplussed.
Lady Akyuu sighed. A long, highfalutin sigh. It was the sound of a fizzy drink being poured down a thin glass. “Where, Gin,” she reiterated for him, “what kind of kiss did you want? I submit my loss, so, quickly, please – make up your mind. I haven’t the whole noon to fritter away on you; others will come by any second. So?”
The courier’s head was full of blue balls and lint, but even they were crowded by the young Hieda’s acquiescence to kiss him. And she was very relevant to one of the two, which didn’t do anything for the press between his ears.
( ) A very lovey, very dovey kiss. ( ) A big no-no kiss.
Gin grinned witlessly. He had, to tell the sad truth, an idea. And he pitied it. Ideas had the capacity to feed and pupate into beautiful dreams if left unenacted long enough. This one wouldn’t live to the tender age of half a minute.
Whoever had designed man must have overwintered on theirs. Men folded so snappily. Gin went from uprightness to kneeling at the table across from his lady with as much as no in-between. And as good as no kneecaps.
“There is this thing,” he went on staunchly to say, “this wee-lil’ thing, mistress, I never got to practice as a high school lad. Was reckoning this’d be the scope for repairs.”
“My hairs stand on the ends from trepidation,” said lady Akyuu. And they had to have been, since then she drew some more of them behind an ear. “Well? What would that wee thing be?”
“Mmwell—” said Gin, a tardy microseism of embarrassment jiggling his figurative landmasses. “It is a cliché, no, how in films, you’ve these two students who are not-really-but-really-are into each other? And they’re at a library together, studying, absorbing those slices and integrals and whatnot, and then they chance to reach for the same note on the pile, and their fingers touch, and they gaze at each other, doe-eyed, and something clicks, and they think, ‘Good heavens, I do really want to kiss this guy,’ and they lean in and end up doing just so – like it’s the most natural thing to do? Well, that part,” he coughed the admittance, “never happened to me, mistress. I’d love if it could, though. With this beautiful, studious young woman I know.”
Lady Akyuu, who had listened and likely counted the ands with a sneer of editorial forbearance now sighed her commentary of the notion. “… Gin,” she shook her head, but genteelly, “first of everything, no, I have never seen a film, let you alone the specific variety spotlighting school-aged youth being intimate. What in the world? Second of all, however,” she nimbly moved on, “I did already speak my piece on you and I kissing. Yes? I hadn’t perchance imagined that whole evening? Had I?”
“Gods, I hope not,” said Gin, words curdling on his tongue.
“Same here,” the young mistress assured him. “And so, I have said already it is irrevocably a no-deal. Haven’t I?”
“Yes,” the vinegary courier agreed, “but, later on, you did let me kiss you once.”
“Once,” reminded lady Akyuu. “Once, Gin, because I was distracted and you were persistent and I wanted so very much to reward you. I implore you, do not make me recall it; it was not my proudest moment of the night.”
Something in the young lady’s tone circumcised the flippant replies. It could have been the rather spoken warning, or it could’ve been the unspoken suggestion that everything else had, more or less, calculated on the prouder side. The silent, reproachful stare she was giving him told of a third possibility: that she was by accident already recalling the circumstance and holding the bumptious courier responsible. Or, at least, inviting him to share in the shame.
It hadn’t been needed. The mere mention of the moment was a flush of hot blood up his jaw; and it’d take more than an order, even lady Akyuu’s, to make him forget the sight of her laid down, laid back and getting laid atop the very same table they were at now, sans the intervening paperwork, stuffing her face in a cushion while her precious place had been fiddled with inside and out, courtesy of one employee stayed in too late and dispossessed of scruples. Oh, sure, he’d fancied her before and she’d fancied him back, if you should give the excuses the trust they’d begged; none of it had factored into what’d been happening by the time the eldest daughter of the Hieda had consented to let said employee take her lips as well. It’d been him thrusting up against her vulnerable spots and thumbing her happiness button as he’d asked. And asked. And blasted well asked.
Good heavens, thought Gin, licking his teeth. It turned him wrong-side-out, the way that had panned out. If it hadn’t, that’d be it. Spilt milk – ideally on the rocks and wishfully over some whiskey. Now, though? Now, he was consigned to reattempting the feat till someone was blue in the face. And not because they’d been muffling their sex noises in a cushion.
Gin groaned, perhaps a nip crabbier than he’d aimed. It was vile, how the young mistress could turn him on and off like a switch – without knowing what one was. “… See, mistress,” he said, recognising when the foot of proverb was down, “I don’t mind too much playing along; truthfully, I love playing with you. It’s a drat bit harder to, though, when the rules are so murky.”
Lady Akyuu shored up her chin on the top of a palm. “It is no murkier than a line, Gin,” she chided. “Yes, I may have a perverted streak in me… or two, or five, no thanks to this fellow I might name… but there are boundaries I shan’t cross. This—” the young lady puckered her lips with insinuation “—is one; if we should encroach upon others, then I do not expect you to read my heart. I will tell you. Happily for you, there are few of these enough; all but everything else, I shall be glad to put on the table – metaphorically or literally, depending.”
“And if I were to ask to kiss you someplace else?” wondered Gin.
“Any place that is not my lips,” lady Akyuu was adamant. Then, she smiled as a roguish thought popped to her pretty head. “… Upper ones, at any rate,” she said, mock-innocently. “Why, my upper lips may be my future husband’s; my lower, however…” There was a tactical pause as the young mistress let her meaning take. “… Those, Gin, have kissed every inch of you, already. So, if you should want more kisses…”
She left it dangling in the air between them. Gin stared on, unblinking, halfway unable to do anything else but – until something booted him in the hindbrain, focusing his attention.
The eldest daughter of the Hieda, noting said attention had been brought to bear, gave him a roguish smile. And then, slowly, she mouthed the words:
E-A-T. M-E. O-U-T.
Unheeded in Gin’s trousers, the half-cocked erection the courier’d kept suppressed since sliding it out of miss Reimu now shot to full size in the wake of the thought of spreading lady Akyuu’s pale thighs to get at her immodestly mature womanhood. Concerning which matter, the rest of his body half-rose on its knees. The smiling lady Akyuu watched, her violet eyes agleam, as Gin opened his mouth, reconsidered, raised a finger, frowned, lowered it, twisted his scarfed neck and then decided to give breathing a renewed permit.
She sniggered, but elegantly. “Ah, not right now, Gin,” she chided, and the courier flumped back on his seat in a draught of chagrin. “I’d love nothing more than to take a break and… go for it, but not today, not this early, and not when I am still unwell and unsure to reciprocate. I will tell you what, however,” she forged on before Gin might get his complaint in edgeways; “the day after tomorrow is the first of Winter solstice. Why do you, say, not come in – give the maids and porters a hand with stalls and what-have-you? Afterwards, you might volunteer to walk me home. We might go to my chambers… or perhaps to your place, instead… someplace where I may let my voice out at all due volume, how you wanted. Yes?”
“… Yeah,” Gin said dumbly.
“Such a cliché, that would be,” marvelled lady Akyuu, half to herself, “screwing behind everyone’s backs on the night of a festival…”
Coy mirth quirked the edges of lady Akyuu’s eyes. “Can you hold out, though?” she doubted him. “Can you, Gin Akamatsu, shelf that beastly urge of yours to fuck your noble lady into a sloppy, moaning wreck for two more measly days? Can you refrain, until then, from inveigling her into lewd acts which you may fain well, for want of time, not even have the opportunity to bring to fruit? Or, for your ape brain,” she added, now faintly edged, “can you quit leading me astray in work hours when I have already given myself to you in promise? Twice? Well, you big, darn, dirty, handsome man?”
Gin, who had an eye not only for put-down feet but also for when shoes were dropped, resolved to nod and have strong words with the rebelling parts of his anatomy as soon as he was out the door. “… Yeah,” he said for the third time and the evident charm.
Lady Akyuu sat back on her stacked cushions. “Then, please, apply yourself, Gin,” she moaned the weary demand. “It was quite, quite enough I had to interview that spider moll with those bawdy stories fresh in my head; I very nigh blurted about children at one point. Or can you tell I am excessively worked up? Gods, am I ever! I need a tea…”
But the courier was back on his own feet and midway to the exit, and if he mixed a mean drink then he brewed an outright nasty tea. “I’ll prod a maid if I see one,” he tendered instead.
The eldest daughter of the Hieda, un-kissed and unperturbed, winnowed him from the room’s air with an already pen-occupied hand.
“As long as you do not penetrate,” she joked back, it appeared, entirely out of usance.
Gin made a face she couldn’t see and did what couriers did best – or at least for which they were employed.
The Hiedas’ crusty yardman, crusty though he was, wasn’t wretched at his job. He kept things changing hands. And he was a good listener. He listened to the written word of lady Akyuu without fail. He also said the right things, like: “Uh-huh. One tic.” and “Map an’ parcel. Ain’t far off the beat’n path; can’t get lost.” Couriers got their freight or got a lecture on bothering the depot crew while they’re on their teatime. The parcel proved none too onerous, and neither did the map, and Gin was looking to the depot gate for slippage when the yardman’s attentions turned suddenly and intensely personal.
“Somebody’s expandin’, ah?”
It went very quiet in Gin’s thoughts. This was because it was usually difficult to be simultaneously secretive and loud. “… What’s that?” he mumbled, attempting to evoke a general impression of notcaritude with strong overtones of courierness.
The ox-shouldered man jabbed a tea-brown thumb at the map Gin had, somewhat foolishly, unfolded to examine ahead stepping on the gas. “Third time you’re runnin’ without town,” the king of the yard explained. “Always seen you doin’ in-walls stuff before. Orders, ‘nvoices ‘n such. Heeled the lady’s little toe, ‘ave we?”
Wait, is that how that goes? almost tore out of his throat. Gin coughed it up as: “This, er, something that happens? These out-of-town gigs?”
The yardman shaped his yardstick shrug. “Always been,” he opined. “More’n regular in Winter-time, what on account o’ them strange folks not wantin’ to freeze their lady bits off. Always been, though. Long as I been here, ‘nywho. Warehouse lads, back there—” he gestured vaguely the relevant way, “—tole they once packed a whoopin’ crate o’ garlic for the Scarlet Devil’s. So, all said – happens. That was a lark, by the bye, Gin Aka-wossname.”
“Akamatsu,” said Gin. And then added, “What?”
“The thin’ ‘bout toes. Lads what run the spooky jobs—” the big man twirled a finger near his ear, “—nutters may be, but they ain’t never been forced. The young Hieda lady’s on speakin’ terms with most nearby youkai anywho, so anyhow you botch it, there’s an understandin’ no one’s to be eaten. It ain’t cushy, but it ain’t bad, either. An’ I hear there’s perks to boot. Were I, too, but hankerin’ after some, well…”
The yardman stretched his arms in an Oni-ish sort of way, like a man who’d run down fairies in his youth and wrestled them to the ground and wished he could do so now, if only the belly were smaller and the fairies not onto his tricks. He looked like he could have a whole trophy wall of fairy undies back at home.
Gin felt a grain of kinship stir in his liver. “… Yanno,” he said, vowing to return every borrowed instance of the word straight to Ashi’s lips the day they met again, “they whisper in the halls of the mighty you’re something of an ass, but I reckon you’re a well-disguised horse. Do you drink?”
The horse of a man snorted like one, whereupon Gin found himself the donee of a jockey’s slap on the kidneys.
“‘Course I do, bellhop,” chuffed the yardman, snapping a salute and waddling away, “each day at eleventh stroke with the lads – an’ don’t you forget it!”
Near an hour later, and Gin’s kidneys still remembered.
The farmland, spanning from the town’s walls in a frozen fretwork of fields and highways, was as hushed and private as hushed and private open land could be: eddies of pallid mist the only other animate wayfarers. Gin jogged on through the crackling silence, but carefully – keeping a weather eye on the count of branching roads, of which one, on the authority of the elegantly calligraphed map, he was to bank on to take him to his destination. He didn’t sing. His kidneys had had a firm word with his lungs on the topic of crowding, and the world, frost-rimed as it was, could’ve shattered from the uncouth syllables of Gin’s marching song. The state of his equipment was no help, either. He did, instead, the mental equivalent of motorboating his lips.
The next turn ahead choked his engine.
All right, ah-ha and no, thank you, Gin thought when, out of the frigid bloom, a pair of modish, side-tie panties loomed to hang overhead from a naked tree-branch. They were purple this time, and they had not a thread of the innocuousness of the previous ones. They were, truth to tell, rather sexy, and Gin trotted rather pointedly underneath them without a second peer.
Then, he stopped. Turned back. Squinted at the presented underwear.
Something bent inside him.
He tottered a few steps in the wrong direction, span on his heel, turned back again, swore silently behind the wheel and decided to accept the fact of the temptation. He could turn tail and run once the prowling youkai emerged, but he would do so with memories to nurse of the event. He’d not seen panties like these in… well, never. They could’ve been two kerchiefs snipped down to geometrical limit and strung together. Had a girl worn these – say, lady Akyuu – you could see her bush sticking out clear as day and more of her honeypot than you couldn’t. And the ties implied, in no indeterminate terms, taking them off was what you were supposed to do anyway.
… And the blasted youkai was nowhere in evidence. Gin had only to cease his longing scrutiny of the panties in the tree and strain his ears to have a decent dare-say at why.
Off the roadside, behind the wildlife hedge of tangled blackthorn, it was audibly already having its meal.
Gin stilled all over, the mist settling around him like a muffler made of… well, mist. The youkai, invisible through the Winter gloom, was mumbling to itself: its frenetic, feminine utterances close on to imperceptible even to the courier’s whetted hearing.
It was asking for more. And, from the loudened, wet clapping that followed, whoever was dispensing it was nothing loath to oblige.
( ) A wizard in the Winter, Gin Akamatsu would cast “SPLIT.” ( ) A voyeur in the fog, Gin Akamatsu would creep.
(X) A voyeur in the fog, Gin Akamatsu would creep.
On the tippiest of his toes, or at least those of his tabi boots, the courier chassed toward the sound. The pining moans climbed in intensity.
It wasn’t before he was crouching by the defoliated brush that Gin’s head had savvied to what his feet were doing shoulder-to-shoulder with his dick. As it embrangled itself with the innuendo in the circumstance, those were his hands which sold him down the river next: gingerly picking the undergrowth apart for a spyhole into what has taking place beyond. And try though he might to be upright about the whole thing, there was but one region of him which met the criteria once the snarled, leafless branches yielded at last the desired window.
And there, among shallow roadside brush, a youkai was indeed enjoying a meaty treat.
A short, stocky, womanly figure, dolled up in whites, maroons and purples, she was bent half-over and bridled from behind by both arms by a large man in a logger’s flannels. A pair of outlandish, nearly misshapen wings projected from her slumped shoulders to droop limply at her sides; a matching, although miniature set did the same on either side of her face, where ears would otherwise have been found. The face wreathed between them was anything except limp. Neither were the two plump, melon-sized tits popped out of the gap in the youkai’s unbuttoned undershirt. They bounced, swaying in the aftermath of each of the man’s savage thrusts, their tips so dark and so flushed from either the cold or the sex as to be purple themselves. And if the bird youkai had incorporated anything into her outfit to cover up what her brown, lace-trimmed thigh-highs weren’t, then it must have been removed in the interests of easy access, because from her waist to the place the man was vigorously stuffing full, everything was nude and bared to the peeper’s eye. If, anyway, you excluded the clump of wiry, lavender pubes on the bird-girl’s busy groin, stuck together into a mess of sweat, hair and what had to be misplaced semen.
The expression on the youkai’s face, nicely appreciable from Gin’s shelter, was wonderfully lewd: her jagged teeth clenched, those inhuman, slitted eyes rolled up in their sockets, cheeks as pink as ripe cherries in the Summer. A low, impassioned hum, an unbroken “Oo-OO-oo-OOhh~” poured forth from her liberated chest, undulating on the register as her womanhood emptied and topped back up. The man doing a number on her insides must’ve detected a shift in pitch that’d been lost on Gin; he jerked the slutty youkai straighter by the captured wrists, exciting from her a happy chirp – and giving the happenstance voyeur a stunning view of where they were joined in sloppy copulation. Outstripped in size, the youkai’s swollen labia nevertheless stretched around the logger’s pumping girth: sliding up and down the rigid shaft with smooth, almost docile willingness. It made no difference for her small, slightly chubby belly how big he might be; he hilted his manhood with every stroke, giving her baby room what was no doubt a solid knocking and forcing her overfilled crotch to bump into his at the end of each deep insertion. The bird-girl crooned her smutty delight, engrossed in the sex, oblivious of the wealth of juices and semen being scooped out of her depths to ooze down and soak her erotic thigh-highs.
Softened before now by the brush and the pervading mist, the lewd soundscape of intercourse – the moaning, smacking of skin on skin and squelching of moist genitals – was clearer than Gin could’ve caught on any tape.
Something gave way; and it took Gin’s downward glance to compass it was the belt of his by now two sizes too tight trousers, where he was now jamming a resigned hand. The youkai bird was in the throes of such passion the like of which Gin hadn’t witnessed since the time he’d toddled drunk by an alley where a gang of curious schoolboys had been jointly finger-banging a captive fairy. He’d not stopped to watch then; he could rightly not look away now. It was perverse and sordid; the brave lumberman had to have come inside and filled the youkai’s womb with several loads for the volume of cum leaking from her small, ravenous pussy. The two must have been fucking for a good, long while already; this was simply the latest in a line of wanton impregnations. Nor was the libertine bird idle herself; even subdued in the prison-style position, she still twisted and readjusted her wide hips to give – or perhaps to get the most out of every slimy tour her pussy lips made of her partner’s mismatched length.
Gin began comforting his own, untimely and undeniable hard-on inside his underpants, relishing the view of the youkai’s shaking tits, her swooning face, runny thighs and the deceitfully small pussy that ate up seven whole inches of hard cock yet slid off in no worse condition. And he felt nothing, not a spot of shame for it – maybe but for that of not being the one fucking the promiscuous bird. He’d known he had a spectatorial idée fixe; even before peeping on Yamame spit-shining her man’s evening rod he’d had a share of misadventures with wandering ears and eyes. He’d never, nonetheless, beaten the one-eyed monk to others getting it on… though he’d have been sorely tempted to (in retrospect, possibly with Ashi’s help), had the blond clothier determined to pull down her panties and get creampied.
This broke the venerable record. It could’ve been furthered by the unfinished business of getting serviced by (and servicing back) miss Reimu; it might’ve added to lady Akyuu’s shameless tantalisation. In Gin’s hotfooting mind, there was something else. The absurd. The sheer occurrence of a human and a youkai slinking out into the privacy of the woods to hump each other’s wits out, well past practical excuses, past pregnancy, past all decency, flying in the face of ancient tradition prescribing youkai-kind to be the predator, and humanity – its prey. It was sex for sex’s sake: an interspecies rendezvous to indulge that oldest of animal instincts in defiance of theoretical incompatibility. And it drove Gin nuts, and his nuts nuts, to know it was happening – out here, far from the town walls, beneath the people’s conservative attention. It was a disillusioning, redeeming thing to see for himself he wasn’t the lone unscrupulous soul in Gensokyo.
Well, no. There was Yamame and her altitudinous boyfriend; that, however, was love. Love ruled itself differently from physical interest in creatures you ought to run away from screaming.
Or maybe, told the oft-clipped edge of this coin, he was a simple deviant goaded beyond his warping point.
Any way that truth leaned, Gin massaged himself under his pants, while the unknown woodcutter massaged the bird youkai’s cum-slick pussy. Her tight, complaisant labia trailed after and smooched every exiting inch of his large tool on the downstroke, then foamed up with freshly squeezed semen whenever he crammed it back up into her overstuffed baby-maker. Her bared, purple-tipped titties bounced round and round in obscene circles as the man smashed and smashed his waist into her ample rear. Where her womanhood was diligently clinging on, the youkai’s pudgy face was fast succumbing to animal lust. Shutting this eye then that, spittle trickling down her chin, and humming that incessant song of arousal, except rising in key.
Gin, recognising what had to be coming on, braced for the results. So did the lumberman fucking the bird into drooling submission.
The youkai tossed her messy head left and right. An unthinking, breathless, “Oo-Oohnnooo, no way, no waaay, oo~” flew from her pinched throat.
The woodcutter was no babe in the woods. “Oh, naw. Y’are. See, here—”
And then, having unshackled one of her arms, the man reached around the jiggling youkai to dig a hand between her thickset thighs. He gave the small pussy a flick of his callused fingers, and the bird-girl’s voice shot for a beat to the highest of its range. From her neck down to the bootie-clad feet, the youkai’s body went stiff as a pole, face locking into a delirious grin – ahead, in the next second, arching backwards once the first uprush of climax wracked her shapely figure. The woodcutter moved with the fleetness of a man who ducked felled timbers for a living; he gripped the bird-girl by the trembling hips and thrust – a flurry of quick, savage thrusts – up into her cumming pussy, until his own orgasm reared its swollen head and he buried his throbbing member to the hilt – giving the tiny youkai’s womb no respite from being pumped full of hot human spunk yet again. The youkai bird kept coming even while she was being impregnated – her frantic mating song reduced to a blissful, low-pitched whine.
Having finished first his primal duty, the lumberjack extracted his spent length from the bird-girl’s overloaded vagina. There was a squeak of startled loss once the fattest, final inch sprang free of her gripping labia, but none too sharp to curtain her hitching orgasm. The youkai bird stood on two jelly-kneed legs, biting the nails of her released hand, boobs heaving with each breath, while her contractions wrung all the woodcutter’s tight-fitting cock had kept trapped inside out of her loose-lipped pussy. Cum and pussy juice in profusion dribbled onto the forest floor, sloshed down her thighs and dirtied her erotic legwear. And the only way, the yearning glint in the bird youkai’s eyes was saying, she might be made happier would be for someone to wait one more minute then plug up the leak with something long and hard – and replenish what had been wasted.
It was a pious pervert’s hope. The man skimmed a palm up the girl’s flank to squeeze one of her breasts and twirl its nipple between his fingers while, down below, he wiped his dick on the already cum-stained thigh-high.
“This’ll do,” he breathed out – leaned in – and kissed the youkai’s flushed cheek, right below the feathery ear. “Won’ it, miss Cook?”
There was a nod, but not of a good sample. It was to proper nods what cider was to apple juice. The fading orgasm was making her fuzzy. “… Nnm.”
“Three times, as wrangled,” prodded the lumberman. “Yea? I’ll have yer bag o’ coals on the calendar, don’t have a cow ‘bout it.”
“Two bags,” snapped miss Cook, interests of earthly variety briefly dimming the afterglow. “Two bags if I do you with my boobies, yes? As wrangled.”
Someplace, a courier with a fist down in his pants was forced to amend a theory.
The woodcutter chucked a chuckle. Just one. “Yea, on, whad’dya call it… con-signment.” He slipped his hand from one of the aforesaid boobies and drew away. “Meanin’, when you come t’ get ‘em, miss Cook.”
“Meaning—” gasped the dumpy youkai, teeth flashing, “Meaning, you had best have two! Mister Axeman!”
A grin split mister Axeman’s stubbly mien as he did up the ties of his heavy trousers. “Ah-ha. Right y’ are, miss. Well, my lumber camp’s up the road a ways town-wise. I’ve a fire goin’ most days. Ya ain’t can miss it. Come any time ain’t th’ day after morrow, an’ I’ll have it. Ah, an’ miss Cook?” he seemed to remember. “‘Bout that friend o’ yours – what y’ told told you o’ this method—”
“We aren’t friends,” protested miss Cook. “She eats at my stand sometimes, is all.”
“Wanted t’ meet ‘er,” the woodcutter excused himself, “… is all.”
The youkai bird, half nude and dripping, squeezed her eyes shut and bit down on a thumb. “… Nngh, I’ll get her, fine!” she grumbled at last, glaring the bold man up and down with her slitted eyes. “I’ll try, but only if you’ll get me a nice striker in the bargain. Mine’s almost ground through at the belly. A nice, new, steel striker. No iron! I know how iron tastes, so no tricks.”
“An’ a deal y’ have thee, miss,” said the woodcutter with reverence. “Well, ought t’ figure this’s my moment t’ scarper. See y’ round, miss Cook, eh?”
That last, fiery promise was flung at the lumberjack’s back as he clumped off into the brush, gratefully at an azimuth askance from the one which would’ve put him on a collision course with a courierous iceberg.
A full minute had had to swim by for the silent, woodland ambience to drown out his clamorous retreat. Then, to her sighed relief, the youkai bird was alone. At least, in her world.
She tottered under a nearby tree, still in the purview, and slumped with her droopy wings to the trunk. She looked, under her rumpled, lavender fringe, as though she’d gotten nowhere and come a long way to land there. She’d got the coal, a cartful of memories, a new tool into the drawer, and to something, somewhere, she should have taken more. That frustration bubbled over when, flinching, miss Cook slipped a hand down between her dirty thighs. There was a hitch of hesitation… and then a long, restless moan as the horny youkai plunged two of her long-nailed fingers into her overflowing vagina.
She pushed them as deep as they went, up to the third knuckles, wiggling them around and gasping from the stimulation… and then pulled them out – coated in fresh, gluey semen. Gin, yet unheeded and still behind the hedge, felt his hard-on thump in his death-grip. The slutty, winged youkai raised the cum-plastered fingers to her mouth where, after sniffing at it at some length, she began cleaning it from her slender digits with her lips and her tongue. The sight of the fantastic creature, a youkai, a terror from the forest, eating herself out (in the drought of better terms), bowled over the humble pleasures of voyeurism. It was Ashi all over again. Maybe it was Ashi all over again, except worse, because there was nobody there to catch and tell on him.
At least, Gin chastised himself, in his world.
There were only two knobbly bits to this puzzle piece anyhow, his dick vibrated in heartbeat Morse – either he placed it so he went back on the road and let the icy wind batter his standard down, or…
… Or he came out of hiding and gave the horny youkai what he couldn’t to miss Reimu – even if she’d gotten plenty of it already.
( ) Would go for the sloppy seconds and try to fuck the bird. ( ) Would save his spunk – and his spunk – for the client.
Ohhh very nice update. Separating the talking from the fucking really helped with the immersion element here.
[X] Would go for the sloppy seconds and try to fuck the bird.
I'm at a bit of an impasse. On one hand, I'm not a fan of sloppy seconds. On the other hand, I can't resist EXTRA THICC birb booty. Goin with this option on the off-chance she's a up-the-butt kinda gal.
(X) Would save his spunk – and his spunk – for the client.
Well, Gin was no gourmet, first of everything, but he had sense enough to decline another man’s leftovers. It just wasn’t in good taste. And wish though he might from the bottom of his rocks to give the youkai bird a cause for uncertainty if she should get pregnant in the end, somewhere in the process he would be compelled to stick his dick in some lumberjack’s mess. A hot, slippery mess which he might scrape out and then replace with his own, but a mess nonetheless.
Messes were fun to stir around and enlarge on the whole, but only when they were your own. Another guy’s was… well, his responsibility. It wouldn’t be sporting to muck about with it. Or, indeed, in it.
The inner ethics reinstalled themselves. Gin unhanded his manhood, retired his grippier hand and, against all mother wit, leered one last time at the youkai on her best way to becoming a mother herself. Miss Cook was, as shrewd birds were given to, exhibiting a bad case of sticky fingers; she plucked the gooey prize from her lower mouth and deposited it in her upper by the fingerful, all the while distracting the former with spates of harsh masturbation. This, latest one saw her tipped forward, those plump tits lolling – smelling the cum-smeared digits of her right hand while her left’s slid in and out of her lovelorn pussy. The price of black gold in the sum of two bags struck Gin as a cop-out beside the bird-girl’s obvious, unrelieved lust. It’d been a nifty extra, nothing else. Miss Cook had intended to get fucked, still wanted to fuck and, if the woodcutter’s ears weren’t packed full of sawdust, would get fucked and knocked up again, “any time ain’t th’ day after morrow.” She and, Gin rather featured, her panty-hanging non-friend both.
And then, if no news cropped up within the week of a missing or wounded lumberjack, Gin would feel a paranoid fool for ducking the panty trap the day before.
Youkai! the courier scoffed inside, creeping away from the one beyond the wall of blackthorn. Of course, everybody in town knew that, underneath the teeth and claws and showers of bright magic, most of Gensokyo’s nameable youkai came in the fairer sex; it just wasn’t a subject that took precedence over their flagship features, except at those points in the conversation where survival instinct had already, as it were, hit the glass. And yet, as lady Akyuu had attested, courtship had never been exempt – even in the legends – and the tamer of Gensokyo’s apex predators did, indeed, play at being human – with all the conventional vices. Sex was but one a mite harder to tease out from a hidebound populace. Miss Cook and her non-friend (and sister Ichirin, and Ashi, and Yamame, and the fabled Mistress of Jouren Falls) had simply hammered out a working method.
And it worked a damn sight well, because no sooner had Gin’s feet hit the reassuring dirt of the highway than his focus was once more snagged by the pendent panties. There was a whisper of breeze and a slight, seductive flutter.
Gin took a running start – leapt – and came down with miss Cook’s panties wrapped around his palm. They didn’t look used, but they’d been. An altogether tactless whiff of their front confirmed it. Gin appeased himself with two more ahead pocketing the bounty – and not where Gin Jr would’ve kept them geni(t)al company.
And then, an owner of two pieces of underwear belonged formerly to scary youkai, he resumed his mid-Winter jog through the frigid farmland.