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30512 No. 30512
Hello! this is my first story on this website. Hope you enjoy it, but before we start, I should mention a few things. This is a multi-route story that depends on your choices. Some questions will be vague and influential, so if you'd like to know who your going for, check one of the boxes below

[ ] Hints. Any choices that impact your relationship with the characters will have a "+1" and then the name of the character. This will tell you which route your going on.

[] No hints. Basically going in blind. Use with great responsibility.
131posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>> No. 30705
[ze] Go with Lyrica's plan.

I agree with the post above, I prefer the latter ones.
>> No. 30706
[X] Go with Lyrica's plan.

I'm inclined to say go with what matches the update.
>> No. 30708
[X] Go with Lyrica's plan.

As for preferences, I kind of like the longer updates.
>> No. 30709
[X] Go with Lyrica's plan

“You do have a point there. Do you want to do it or should I?” I asked.

“I think I can take it from here,” Lyrica said, facing Chen again.

“Well, we can get a drink if you'd like. Just tell us which one and we'll show you how.”

She went on to explain how to do it and asked what she wanted. Looking from here, she seemed very motherly to Chen. As Lyrica taught her how to use the machine, I wondered just what she was doing here alone. I don't think she would leave without one of her superiors by her side. Shortly after that, I heard a familiar rumble, and Chen pulled out a Dr. Pepper.

“Ah, I've wondered what these were like,” Chen said as she examined the can, “Thanks, Lyrica.”
“Well, actually, I learned that from Ives here,” Lyrica said as she pointed to me.

“Well, is there anything I can do for you?” Chen asked.

“Actually, yes,” I answered, “We just have a few questions to ask you about the cafe.”

Chen then looked away and pondered for a bit.

“To be honest, I don't know much, but I'll share what I can.”

“So, how did you get here?” Lyrica inquired.

“Let's see...” Chen pondered, “I was tending to my cats in Mayohiga when I got tired and went to sleep. When I woke up, I was inside one of the cafe's rooms. It caught me off guard, but then I found out that there were others here as well, like you, Lyrica.”

“So, you don't know anything about the cafe itself?” I asked.

“Well... not anything important that isn't already known, no,” Chen stated.

Well, not only does she not know anything, but it seems that Ran or Yukari can't be tied to this right now. Chen, I would assume, would be with them, but I forget Chen's independence.

“I'm still trying to see if Lady Ran or Lady Yukari are here, but so far no success,” Chen said, “I'll tell you if I see them.”

“That would be nice, but don't stress yourself here,” Lyrica said, “We'll make it out of here.”

“You act like this is a prison or jail of some sort,” Chen said as she popped the cap off her soda and held it in her hand, “I think the people behind this are not nearly as evil as you make them out to be. This cafe seems like a vacation more than anything.”

She went to gulp the drink down and nearly spat it out.

“What is this?!” Chen said, “Some kind of bubble drink?”

“Something like that,” I said, “It's called 'soda'.”

Chen took a moment to regain composure, then took a sip of it. After licking her lips and thinking she looked back at us.

“I could get used to this,” Chen said, “Coffee isn't my thing, anyway.”

“Thanks for answering our questions, Chen,” I said.

“No problem, now I'll be down at the cafe if you need me,” Chen informed, “See ya later.”
And with that, she left for the stairs and headed down.

“So,” Lyrica said, “Any idea on what you want to do?”

[ ] Ask around for more information
[ ] Simply hang out
[ ] Inquire about what was bothering her
>> No. 30710
[z] Simply hang out
[e] Inquire about what was bothering her

First relax, then question time.
>> No. 30711
[ ] Simply hang out
[ ] Inquire about what was bothering her
>> No. 30722
[X] Simply hang out
[X] Inquire about what was bothering her

Hm if this is like a normal cafe, then it should have non-coffee drinks on its menu as well. Maybe Chen can try those.
>> No. 30739
[X] Simply hang out
[X] Inquire about what was bothering her
>> No. 30747
[X] Simply hang out
[X] Inquire about what was bothering her

“Well, I was thinking we could hang out,” I said.

“I wouldn't mind that,” Lyrica said, “Want to go back downstairs and talk?”

“Sure,” I said as I turned back to the direction of the stairs.

We went down to the cafe and sat at one of the tables farthest from the door. Merlin approached us and asked if we needed anything, and we ordered milk instead of coffee. Lyrcia was the one who said she wanted milk instead of coffee. Perhaps coffee isn't necessarily her thing in the first place, I guessed. We didn't spend much time talking, but we enjoyed the company we had. While we hung out, a feeling of uneasiness came to mind. When I tried to figure out what it was that disturbed me, my mind went back to what Lyrica said earlier.

“Actually, it's nothing!”

When she said there was another reason she couldn't date me, Lyrica took it back and pretended it didn't hurt her. I know it's not my business to get involved, but I felt a need to know why. If something is bothering her, I want to help in any way I can.

“Lyrica, earlier you had said that there was another reason you couldn't date me,” I said, “What was that reason?”

“Oh, that?” Lyrica said, “It was nothing, really.”

“Lyrica, you don't have to hide your feelings on the subject,” I said, “You can tell me anything.”

She looked off to the side once again, gloom once again setting across her face. She sat there for about 15 seconds before talking again.

“Well,” she said in a soft, melancholic voice, “It's better than telling my sisters how I feel.”

I wonder what she meant by that, but she turned back to face me.

“Listen...,” Lyrica implored, “In about four days, on January 14th, there is a particularly important day approaching.”

“What is important about that day?” I requested.

“It's... the anniversary of Layla's death,” Lyrica said hesitantly.

Layla Prismriver, the youngest of the original sisters who created Lyrica, Merlin, and Lunasa. While they lived on, it was said Layla did not. That is, as far as I know. It appears she still affects her sisters to this day.

“T-the thing is, though, no one has talked about it. Lunasa seems to be taking it the hardest, she seems gloomy whenever she is not working. Merlin, on the other hand, doesn't seem to be the least bit fazed by it. It's not a good time to date with all of this going around, especially someone I barely met,” Lyrica explained.

“I see...” I replied.

“I don't want you to get involved in this sort of thing,” Lyrica insisted, “This isn't the kind of thing others can interfere with. So please, will you promise to stay out of it?”

[ ] Promise
[ ] Promise, but express concern
[ ] Don't promise
>> No. 30748
[ze] Promise, but express concern.

We should show that we are worried about it.
>> No. 30750
[x] Promise, but express concern
>> No. 30754
[x] Promise, but express concern
>> No. 30755
[x] Promise, but express concern

As I thought over what she said, I froze up. The anniversary of her death is affecting the sisters in several ways. I... didn't feel comfortable with Lyrica bearing this burden by herself. Nevertheless, if I didn't honor her words, I would bring a greater disservice. Even back then, I wouldn't have wanted anyone to interfere, even if it was because they cared.

"I promise. I'll try to stay out of this," I resolved.

"Thank you," Lyrica replied as she began to leave her chair.

"But, Lyrica," I forced myself say, "I'm still worrying about this situation. If you need anything, even just a shoulder to lean on, let me know. But if you don't want me to... I won't force it."

I realized I gushed out an awful lot. I've been doing that practically the entire time I was here. Heck, I declared my love after one day, not even sparing a thought to what she felt. I realized I have been overbearing to Lyrica. That's why I need to let her deal with this on her own, and only offer my help as she wants it.

"I appreciate the offer," Lyrica said, smiling, "I'll keep it in mind."

With that, she left the table and headed upstairs. Argh, I wish that it didn't have to feel this vexing for her to leave like this. But right now I am left with little options. For a while, I sat there, but someone's figure appeared before me.

"...You seem tense."

The person's figure and soft voice belonged to Lunasa. She drew up a chair sat down.

"I have to say, Ives, I didn't expect you to declare your love to my sister. Especially since you barely met her," Lunasa stated.

"I take it you don't approve?" I asked.

"I'd never approve of someone who is bordering that of a stranger to date anyone," Lunasa firmly said.

"I don't blame you," I said, "I got too caught up in the moment."

Lunasa gave a pitying smile.

"As long as you acknowledge it, I am fine," Lunasa explained, "Love takes time."

"Understood, I'll be more thoughtful," I responded.

Lunasa then gave a inquisitive look.

"Now that I mention it, you are very much like a stranger to us. We don't even know where you came from."

Ah, that's right, I've been pretty silent about my past or self during the time I was here, yet I know a lot about Lyrica and the sisters. It feels kinda unfair when I think about it, but at the same time I'm not comfortable doing so. It's not the kind of thing I would tell to just anyone.

"I see, but it isn't that simple," I said.

Her expression grimaced.

"You better make it that simple, at least for Lyrica. You can't just pretend to be a nobody that came out of nowhere and expect to marry my sister. You're going to have to come forward and show you are a real person."

...

[ ] Promise to tell Lyrica
[ ] Tell Lunasa a portion of yourself.
>> No. 30756
[x] Promise to tell Lyrica

Like she says, we should at least make it simple for Lyrica. Although I don't really get this, aren't we eventually gonna talk this out with all 3 of the Prismrivers? Just seems weird how we have to choose.
>> No. 30757
[ze] Promise to tell Lyrica
>> No. 30759
>>30756
If you are referring talking about yourself, then telling Lunasa will have Ives open up about himself, and he will tell Lyrica when he gets the chance. Promising to tell Lyrica will have Ives only tell Lyrica about himself, and maintaining privacy from Lunasa.
>> No. 30760
[x] Tell Lunasa a portion of yourself.

If we're gonna date Lyrica, we also have to get the other sisters to trust us, at least. I'm sure they don't want some stranger dating their sister.
>> No. 30761
>>30759
Ah, thank you, in that case I'd like to change my previous vote to
[x] Tell Lunasa a portion of yourself.
>> No. 30764
[X] Tell Lunasa a portion of yourself.

"...My parents are no longer with each other."

The sudden response I created surprised Lunasa, but she remained respectful and listened. Solemnly, I continued.

"After something deadly happened to our family, the two were never the same. I was 18 when they said they would divorce each other. My mom and dad insisted on taking me, but I ran away from home because I didn't want to deal with it," I explained.

I took a moment to regain my calm, then continued again.

"I'm 21 now, and I live on my own, making money in a part time job. I've been that way ever since."

I don't know why I decided to blurt something that painful of my history to Lunasa. I guess I just felt a need to tell someone, and have them listen.

"That must have been taken a lot to tell me that, Bellamy," Lunasa said.

She pondered for a bit with her eyes closed.

"I'm still not sure about you, but what I can tell is that you seem to be a person with good intentions," Lunasa said, "Now, I shall take my leave."

"Farewell, Lunasa," I said.

"Farewell," she said, leaving the table.

What was I even doing right now? Why was I taking my chances with Lyrica when I didn't have anything. All we've done is drink coffee and chat together. I moped there for what felt like hours when I felt a loud pat on my back.

"Yo, Comrade!" A voice rang in my ear.

I turned around to see Cirno with the brazen courageous face she always wore.

"Look, Daiyousei, and I are forming a strike force to see what we can find outside this café. We've already got Suika, and we wanted to see if you would join us!" Cirno exclaimed.

So, like an expedition? The snow hasn't been settling at all, so perhaps this would be a good time to figure out where we are. While I thought of this, Lyrica came to mind. I didn't want to leave her behind like that.

"I can't. I want to stay behind with Lyrica," I responded.

Cirno chuckled a bit.

"Ah, yes, your lover," Cirno teased, "She's already volunteered to be a part of the strike force."

"What?" I asked, perplexed.

"Indeed! She is just as curious as well. So once again, are you with us or are you not?" Cirno asked, demanding in tone.

I'd be lying if I said this was a bad idea. We needed to figure out exactly where we were before we could move anywhere else. However, a great concern for me was Lyrica. I wasn't sure if I felt safe with her being put in harms way. Wait, what am I, a prince? Pssh, that's just stupid. Lyrica is more than capable of fending off whatever there may be. There might not even be a foe to face. Nevertheless, I distinctly remember the time I first came here, and that is not an experience I wanted to relive. Still... What should I do?

[ ] Stay behind and let Lyrica tell you
[ ] Go with Cirno and be with Lyrica
>> No. 30767
[x] Go with Cirno and be with Lyrica
>> No. 30797
[X] Go with Cirno and be with Lyrica

Brief consideration aside, the only good course of action would be to go with Cirno. The storm that has been letting on here has been going on for far too long. There is a good possibility of interference from someone else if the storm has raged on this long.

"Fine, I'll join this little expedition," I said.

"I knew you'd say that," Cirno said pridefully, "Meet us at 15:00, and do not be late."

She left the table and went to talk with a group of fairies. Time dwindled by until the appointed meeting came. We had a brief discussion outside of the doorway from the Cafe.

"This blizzard feels a bit unnatural. Do you think there is someone behind it?" One fairy expressed with concern.

"I would like to know exactly where we are," another said, "I find that a more pressing issue."

"Hey, that is what this expedition is for," Daiyousei said, "We're all in it to figure this stuff out, so be patient."

Daiyousei was the second in command of the "strike force", though she acknowledged the whole thing as an expedition.

"But aren't you curious, Dai? I think we should just hurry up and rush in that blizzard. With Cirno's shield, we will be fine," a fairy said.

Instinctively, I looked up from out position. A large "field" of snow and energy was swirling around us in a sphere. We could see everything inside of this field, but the blizzard would not allow us to see outside. I glanced over to the edge and I saw two figures speaking to each other. It appeared to be Cirno and Lyrica. By the looks of things, there discussions were rather tame, which felt odd for the bodacious bragger. Afterwards, Cirno came over to our position, while Lyrica joined with the group

"Attention!" Daiyousei said in a demanding tone.

"Alright, listen up!" Cirno began, "We only have two pressing concerns for this strike force to solve: the blizzard's maker and where we are. I expect only the best of my strongest team, am I clear?"

"Yes, ma'am!" The fairies responded.

To be blunt, this military-like organization felt rather humorous, but I did my best to stifle a laugh. Looking next to me, I noticed Lyrica had cupped her mouth with her hands.

"This will not be any mere invasion. We will be spending at least a day and a night out here. So before we leave, pack up anything you need, but not too much. There are 15 people in this team and I don't want to light this place up like the lunar capital."

I didn't have anything I brought with me, but I gave a quick thought of what I would need for the trip. But aside from clothes and such, I didn't really have anything. But maybe I could get a few items from around the cafe. So what will I take with me

(You can only bring up to 3 items with you. Choose wisely.)

[ ] Write-in
>> No. 30812
You might want to put down some ideas as most people aren't good with these sort of prompts.
>> No. 30813
>>30812
Ah, yeah, you're right. I should probably change up to just a normal choice selection for this case. This time I'll give a list of items that you can select 3 from.

[ ] Soda can from the vending machine
[ ] Spare coffee with milk
[ ] 52 card deck, 4 suits
[ ] Spare blankets
[ ] Sake

I appreciate the help, Anon.
>> No. 30820
Does the coffee come with a thermos? Is the strike force capable of heating or otherwise keeping warm the coffee in the field? If so, trade soda for coffee.

[x] Soda can from the vending machine
[x] 52 card deck, 4 suits
[x] Spare blankets
>> No. 30833
[x] Spare coffee with milk
[x] 52 card deck, 4 suits
[x] Spare blankets

Being around Cirno makes me want to bring extra warm things.
>> No. 30858
[x] Spare coffee with milk (it can be heated)
[x] 52 card deck, 4 suits
[x] Spare blankets

I spent about 10 minutes collecting these - from my room, asking around, and requests - and managed to collect the deck if cards and spare blankets. I packed all my things in my room with a traveling bag. Only one last item, and I would be ready. I went to Lunasa and asked her about the coffee.

"Yeah, we have some excess coffee. How much do you need?" Lunasa asked.

"About 4 liters," I said.

"2 liters," she said brusquely.

Wait, is she trying to hackle me?

"Fine," I said, "3 liters."

"2 Liters. You don't need that much for a luxury item, even for a group of people," Lunasa affirmed.

Guess I've been defeated this time.

"Alright, two liters of coffee," I said, "and please make sure to add milk to it."

"Already am," Lunasa said as she began brewing the coffee, "I'll be ready later, you just talk with Lyrica until then."

Come to think of it, I wasn't sure where Lyrica was, nor where she would be other than stocking up supplies. The only thing that came to mind was that she would be outside, so I decided to see if she was there.

The only person I saw was Cirno out there, just gazing up at the top of the sphere as she sat on the piles of snow. Thinking over it, I did not have any idea where Lyrica could be right now, and chances are I would not be able to find her. Furthermore, I made a huge blunder in judgement that, while she has forgiven me for, I could not forgive myself just yet. After forcing my feelings out way too soon, to try and search her out would not be wise to do. With only one apparent option in mind, I walked towards Cirno.

Even as I approached her, she didn't notice me; she only stared at the blizzard beyond her force field. Maybe I should just leave her be I thought to myself, and turned around. It was then that Cirno decided to speak.

"It kinda makes me feel weird," Cirno spoke.

"Hmm?"

"I mean the blizzard. It's all around us and not stopping. When I put up my barrier, I can still feel it's there. It makes me feel... small."

In a way, I could understand her sentiments. This entire time, the feeling of something bigger was encompassing the cafe, and it didn't feel too pleasant.

"However, I won't let that get me down. I intend to find this person and smack 'em in the face!"

"Isn't that overkill?" I said.

"Not when you have to show you are stronger than them, it's not," Cirno affirmed, "How else do you show strength?"

I tried to find an answer to stop her, but I could only draw blanks. Metaphorical strength doesn't matter to her, whether it be intellectual or emotional.

"There is no other answer," Cirno said, slamming her fist into her free hand, "This is how I fight, and how I become a better fairy."

Before I could even try to find the right response to such a statement, I heard shifting snow in a manor resembling footsteps from behind me. I looked back to see Lyrica trudging through the snow, carrying a bag over her right shoulder. She approached us and spoke.

"Okay, I've got everything I need," Lyrica said, "Ives, do you have everything you need?"

Right then I remembered that I forgot the coffee that Lunasa made as well as my bag. "Crap..." I muttered as I made my way back to the cafe.

As I passed Lyrica, though, I could have sworn I heard her giggle.

--------

This update has was long overdue, and I would like to apologize for the long time it took for me to sit back down and write. Thank you for your patience.
>> No. 30883
"Come on, mush!"

Cirno's voice could barely be heard over the roaring blizzard outside of the shield. The group's feet kept on trudging through the thick snow, but the pace shown signs of slowing. For me, the difficulty of carrying luggage had taken a big tole, as I carried both my own weight and a good portion of supplies. Mentally, I had grown weary of seeing the same scene over and over again, as the snow outside made it difficult to realize we traveled anywhere. I was spent, to say the least.

As was apparent, fairies were irritated as well. Devoted as they were, they could not stand another hour of marching, and we have been doing so for at least that long.

"I'm getting real tired of walking. We need a break, for crying out loud!" A fuming fairy stated.

"Look, it's gonna take a while before we reach our destination," a calm fairy stated.

"Cirno said we would have to endure three hours of this before we stopped, and I can't bear another minute of it."

"Then what do you propose we do?"

She gave a good moment to ponder, when the irritated fairy looked at me from behind.

"Hey, you. You're on good terms with Cirno, right?" She asked.

"I guess you could say that," I replied.

"Mind asking Cirno to take a 10 minute break? We're tired and need a moment to rest."

[ ] Ask Cirno yourself
[ ] Tell her to ask Cirno herself
>> No. 30885
[x] Ask Cirno yourself
>> No. 30886
[x] Ask Cirno yourself
>> No. 30889
[X] Ask Cirno yourself

"*sigh* Fine, I'll go talk to her," I responded.

I accelerates my pace, feet aching as they trudged through the snow. Walking past several of the fairies, I could finally see Cirno at the front. The sphere was only a meter away from her, arms stretched.

"I need to talk to you, Cirno," I said.

"Make it quick," she brusquely replied, not even looking back.

"Some of the fairies have been wondering if we could take a ten minute break."

"No dice! I'm not in the mood to play games here."

"They are saying they are exhausted from the long walk."

"Look, they signed up for this trip, they should be able to take it."

Cirno is ridiculously adamant about this issue. I mean, how hard is it to ask for a break.

"More importantly, why are they sending you to talk to me?" Cirno noted, "Are they cowards or something?"

"They thought that if I talked to you, you would listen."

"Tch, so they are cowards. They are strong, they can take the walk."

"...Okay, that wasn't the only reason," I admitted.

"Hmm?" Cirno said, turning her head around.

"This is also taking a toll on me. I do not think having a break every hour until we set up camp would be to difficult."

She turned her head back around, and continued marching. I considered heading back when I heard Cirno speak up again.

"30 minutes. Then we will take a break."

I headed back to the fairies I talked to and told them her deal. They felt a bit irritated, but at the same time grateful. We continued on our march without a word being said.

----

The time Cirno gave ran its course, and we all sat down on a large mat. We broke into our snack supply and started eating. Daiyousei chastised Cirno for eating so much that she ended up being forbidden to eat any more until our destination. Seeing the tough, diligent side and lazy, moody side clashes in my mind, and I let out a chuckle.

"What's so funny!?" Cirno said, irritated in tone.

"I'm sorry, but... ha ha... I can't see you being the same Cirno from 30 minutes ago," I spoke.

Some of the fairies giggled, and so did Lyrica when I gave her a glance.

"Eh? Whatcha mean by that, human!" Cirno barked.

"I think I've said too much," I said, trying to end the conversation.

"Grrr! I'll show you who's strongest!" Cirno exclaimed as she moved towards me.

Then I had an epiphany come to mind.

"Hold on, I have a better idea," I said.

She stopped for a moment, and I pulled something from my personal bag: a stack of cards.

"Let's play some cards."

"You kiddin' me? I'm one of the best card players there is!" Cirno exclaimed.

Daiyousei gave her a sideways look.

"You've only played blackjack and go fish," she said, "and your record is far from perfect."

"Yeah, well I still beat Suika!"

"Uh-huh, while she was wasted."

"It doesn't matter! In any case, we are getting off topic!" Cirno said, pointing her finger at me.

"Choose your destiny, human! Which game shall we play?"

[ ] Go-Fish
[ ] Blackjack
>> No. 30890
[x] Blackjack
>> No. 30891
[x] Go-Fish
>> No. 30913
[X] Blackjack

"Blackjack," I brusquely responded.

"Very well then! Who else wants to pit themselves against the strongest?" Cirno addressed.

Two fairies raised their hands as well as Lyrica.

"Prepare to lose, Bellamy!" Cirno declared.

----

We went with blackjack with the ruled we were most familiar with. Number cards face value; ace 1 or 11; jack, queen, and king worth 10; first card is hidden; one closest to 21 wins. To keep simplicity, we used double exposure rules. Daiyousei volunteered to be the dealer, and we began.

"Hmm... 18 from the dealer..." Cirno mumbled as she looked at her cards; a 5 and a jack.

"Hit me," Cirno said as she made an "over here" gesture.

Cirno was dealt a 7, to her great dismay.

"Argh! Come on..." she said in frustration.

The other two fairies ended up getting 17 and 16, but decided to not press their luck. Lyrica, though, had other plans.

"Hit me," she said, sweeping the ground towards her. She had a 7 and a 3, and was moving to make her win.

She was dealt a queen, counting up to 20.

"I'll stay," she concluded with. Now it was my turn to decide whether or not to continue. I had a 6 and 8 in my possession.

[ ] Hit
[ ] Don't hit

The rule for this and card games in the future is that the first reply is the one that decides the turn.
>> No. 30918
[x] Hit

57.142857% chance we stay in this round.
14.29% chance we win or tie.
At least two sevens have been dealt. This is the required card to beat Lyrica's hand.
>> No. 30920
[x] hit

"Hit me."

She dealt a card to me, which was an ace of hearts. I can't bust, so I make it a one instead. That still leaves me with a total of 15.

[ ] Hit
[ ] Stay
>> No. 30921
[X] Hit.
>> No. 30925
[x] Hit me

I drew my next card, and hoped it was the one I wanted. To my disappointment, I received an 8, busting my hand.

"Seems I've won," Lyrica beamed.

"Tch! Well at least I didnt lose to Ives," Cirno pouted for a moment, but regained her leadership responsibility.

"As much as I want to challenge you again, our time is up. Everyone, pack your bags."

We packed up what we got out and made our way onto our path. Daiyousei carried a compass, so she knew which path was the direction we had been heading. We continued on for an uncertain amount of time when vibrations in the field broke the monotony of our walk. While we stopped, the fairies chattered about what happened, while I listened in on Cirno and Daiyousei.

"Ngh!" Cirno grunted, "That was a tough blow."

"What's going on?" Daiyousei asked.

"The shield was it by some danmaku. It was ice-based."

"Wait, you don't think..."

"I do. I have to say it's Letty Whiterock. With the number of times I fought her, you would be able to tell who it was."

"What are we going to do then?"

"What we planned from the start: make our base and fight her."

----

Once we set up base, the tents were organized into roles. The smaller tents served as sleeping areas, and one devoted to eating, and the other for conferences. All in all, there were 5 tents total (It was no wonder why the fairies complained on the trip: the sheer amount of what we carried made us tired.) Daiyousei had told everyone to get some rest and head off to sleep. Most if the fairies slept soundly, but I couldn't. I couldn't stop thinking about what could be going on. With Whiterock put into the mix, I questioned what was going on, why this happened, where I was, all the burning questions I had.

I don't think I will be able to sleep for quite some time, and I wondered what I should do.

[ ] Go to sleep. It's best to get some rest.
[ ] Go to the dining tent. I'd rather try to clear my thoughts.
>> No. 30934
[x] Go to the dining tent. I'd rather try to clear my thoughts.

Trying to sleep in such a state is counterproductive.
>> No. 30937
[X] Go to the dining tent. I'd rather try to clear my thoughts.

There's no way I'm going to be able to sleep like this otherwise. After getting out of my sleeping bag and getting lightly dressed, I made my way outside. The bubble was still in place, and it provided decent insulation from the cold. I went inside the dining tent. The place was designed pretty simply. Tables couldn't be brought with us, so we had to suffice with a cloth for a table. There was also a lamp in the center of that cloth. It was an oil lamp, which people questioned if that would be alright, but Cirno insisted it would be fine.

What was out of the ordinary was that Lyrica was sitting alone in the tent before I arrived. She turned to me.

"Ives?" She said with a hint of puzzlement.

"Lyrica, what are you doing here?"

"I was going to ask you the same thing."

A short period of silence settled in.

"...May I sit next to you?" I inquired.

Lyrica nodded, and I did so.

"I was having a hard time sleeping. Too many things were on my mind," I admitted.

"Same here. I'm really worried about what could be happening right now," Lyrica said.

"...Is it about Lunasa and Merlin?"

"Yes. I don't know if they are getting along, if at all. For all I know, they could be fighting each other."

I wanted to comfort her, but I couldn't even quell my own worries about the subject. But if there is one thing I can do, it's to tell her not to let what happened to me happen to her.

"They very well could be, but you will have to solve things between them. If you don't, then they will split apart."

"What do you know about family infighting?" Lyrica replied in vexation.

I kept silent. Her expression changed from mad to confused.

"...Wait, what do you know about family infighting?" She inquired.

"When I was 16, my parents decided to have another child. It was supposed to be a happy occasion, one that my mother was eager about. My father, about a few months into pregnancy, became worried about what it would so to the family, and they quarreled. Eventually, they stopped when the day came close, and hoped that everything would be fine... but it didn't. The child died in miscarriage."

Lyrica showed visible shock at that statement.

"It only got worse from there. My mom despised my father who tried to move on from it too soon. My father hated my mother for wallowing in misery. It got worse and worse until they eventually divorced. They debated who I should go with, and my mother insisted she take me, but I didn't want either of them. I ran away when I was 18, just old enough to live on my own."

"...I had no idea..."

"Lyrica, looking back, I may have had the chance to help, but I didn't take it out of fear. Don't make the same mistake I did."

She looked down at the floor on the verge of tears.

[ ] Hug her
[ ] Try to comfort her with words
>> No. 30938
[x] Try to comfort her with words

Let's not get ahead of ourselves just yet.
>> No. 30939
[x] Try to comfort her with words
-[x] Suggest that perhaps a hug will calm her sisters down.
>> No. 30940
[X] Try to comfort her with words
-[X] Suggest that perhaps a hug will calm her sisters down.

Nice choice here.
>> No. 30942
[x] Try to comfort her with words
-[x] Suggest that perhaps a hug will calm her sisters down.

"Hey, it'll be okay. You can still change this and talk to them."

Lyrica looked at me, eyes still glassy, but hopeful.

"Do you think so?" Lyrica asked.

"Yes, I do. You are their sister, and you can help them," I replied

"But what can I do? It's going to be hard to get them to calm down."

"...a hug."

She tilted her head at my reply.

"Huh?" Lyrica said.

"If they have been building up all these feelings of distraught, then maybe a hug would show them you care and are worried about them," I suggest.

"...Maybe," Lyrica said in consideration.

Stillness settled in. The white noise of the blizzard could be heard through the shield. There didn't seem to be anything to say, until Lyrica spoke up.

"Bellamy... I must be honest with you," She uttered.

"What is it?" I inquired.

"...I... back then... I... I don't know what I was thinking," She said with a pained expression.

Too vague. What is she referring to?

"I don't understand," I said.

Lyrica closed her eyes, as if to avert something.

"When you... admitted you loved me... back then..."

Already worry crept up to my mind, and the worst situation appeared.

"I... said I liked you, but I don't think I can date you."

I should have guessed. No, I think I knew, but I hoped it wouldn't have come to this. It hurt, but I pressed on.

"Is it because of the situation between you and your sisters?" I asked.

"That's one... but there's another," Lyrica added, "It's just not... possible... for an outsider and a resident of Gensokyo to get together."

The sheer bluntness of that statement hit me pretty hard, and not because of how it wasn't possible, but that she knew I was an outsider.

"How... do you know that?"

"You knew about us, and other people without even us introducing ourselves. I can't just chalk it up to 'outsider information'. No, we have heard about the outside world, and I had a hint that you were one."

"But the biggest give away was the one you just did. You admitted to being an outsider when I pressed you on it, even though I still had my doubts."

Lyrica saw through me completely, and I fell right into that trap.

"I... see..." I said.

"I'm sorry Ives, but I just can't let you deal with the pain of seeing me off when you head back."

[ ] It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
[ ] I should avoid the pain of seeing her go away.
>> No. 30953
[X] It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

Where are all the votes?
>> No. 30954
>>30942

[ ] It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
>> No. 30956
>>30953
Tricky vote

[X] It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
>> No. 30958
[X] It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

"Even if it were for a day, I would still love to date you. At least then I will be able to remember the experience. The love, the pain, all of it is better for me than not knowing."

"Ives..." Lyrica said in surprise.

Before she could reply, though, a loud rumbling sound travelled through the camp. We went out to see what happened along with everyone else woken up by the rumbling. The shield was vibrating at the impacts of large spheres of blue energy. It cracked and nearly shattered before Cirno gained control and repaired it for the time being.

"She's here," Cirno stated, "Letty Whiterock."

The situation we were in was a tricky one. We couldn't fight back, as the shield was two-way, so the only way to fight back was to drop the shield, but then the blizzard would obscure our vision.

Cirno made the decision as if it were nothing.

"Alright, I am going in!" Cirno shouted as she dropped the shield and unleashed danmaku in the direction of the bullet siege.

Within seconds the blizzard came in, and the scenery blurred. My skin instantly prickled, and the frigid weather assaulted me. I thanked myself for deciding to get my winter clothes on before I went into the dining tent, because otherwise I might have been in that same position as I was when I first came in. Meanwhile, the sounds of a raging battle occurred, and I could barely see silhouettes of people. The only one that stood out was the one running towards me: Lyrica.

"Ives!" She shouted over the blizzard.

"Lyrica, this is insane! Cirno can't fight Whiterock like this!" I replied.

We couldn't even figure out where Cirno and Whiterock were. The chaos made understanding the situation incomprehensible. The cold was making it hard to think, and without the shield there was not enough to cover me. I could slowly feel myself passing out, as my feet began to give out, Lyrica caught me.

"Ives, hang in there!" Lyrica pleaded.

I needed to tell her something to pass on. Cirno can't beat Whiterock by herself.

[ ] "Stop Cirno and Whiterock."
[ ] "Help Cirno fight Whiterock."
>> No. 30959
[x] "Stop Cirno and Whiterock."
>> No. 30960
[X] "Stop Cirno and Whiterock."
>> No. 30971
[x] "Stop Cirno and Whiterock."

"You need to stop them from fighting..." I muttered.

"Huh?" Lyrica said.

"Cirno doesn't have the power to defeat... Whiterock. You need to calm them both... before we all... all..."

The world began to fade, and my consciousness felt like it was as well. I soon was losing my hold in reality, but the one thing I held onto was the gaze of her lovely face...

----

And he shut his eyes. Ives isn't going to make it in the weather like this, and with everything a blur, it was hard to find the camp - a grey silhouette in the roaring snowstorm. I needed to get him back in the tent, and quickly. I went into one of the sleeping tents and tucked Ives under tons of covers. There, he should be fine for now. Now as long as that tent doesn't buckle under the pressure, I can move onto the issue that threatened our safety.

I went back out to confront Cirno, who was in the heat of battle - the only heat there was - fighting in the whitened sky. I flew over to her, and tried shouting over the wind.

"Cirno! You need to stop!" I exclaimed.

"Lyrica, this is between me and her! Stay out of this!" She yelled.

Huge icicles approached, and I evaded in quick response. Cirno tried as well, but one of the them impacted her and sent her flying. I went back to her.

"Cirno, you can't do this! Talk to Whiterock and try to end this!"

"I told you to stay out of this!"

"Enough is enough! You aren't strong enough to beat h-"

By the time I realized what I said, it was too late. Cirno's face contorted into one of fierce rage. She made a swift motion I couldn't pick up until it hit me.

I could feel pain on my cheek, amplified by the cold. Cirno had backhanded me.

"Shut up!!" Cirno shouted at me, and went to go back and fight with and fought with no focus or cohesion in attacks.

They wouldn't stop. They continued to duel at the expense of the camp and fairies. I couldn't do anything; they were too absorbed in the fighting. Cirno... she let her blatant neglect for the reality of the situation consume her. Those two... those two who wouldn't compromise... wouldn't listen... why can't you just get along?

Lunasa... Merlin...

Please stop fighting...

Stop fighting...

Stop fighting!

"Stop fighting!!!"

I brought out the keyboard and smashed my fingers into the ivory keys. Anger was converted into a song that pierced the blizzard's deafening roar. The dancing danmaku assaulted the two figures in a way neither of them could keep up. The intensity increased with the crescendo, and with one final slam into the instrument, danmaku stormed towards the both of them

Silence followed. Only the blizzard could be heard, and the figures stood perfectly still. The tension felt thicker than the air itself, almost difficult to breathe. Eventually, the wind changed direction away from me and within seconds the world regained focus. Whiterock stood with arms out wide, Cirno was injured, holding her arm. The fairies were floored with surprise. They all stared at me with an expression of either fear or awe. I... I got too infuriated. Now I recklessly endangered everyone, too. Cirno was the one to break the silence.

"I... will stop," she resolved, looking away from both Whiterock and I. Whiterock pondered deeply.

"In light of this... I shall as well."

"You better tell us why you are doing all of this, Whiterock, from this blizzard to the attack on us," Cirno demanded, glaring back at her.

"I shall give you all an explanation."

----

The next section will be on a new thread instead of this one. It will come out within the week.
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