, Willing to share unlimited power.jpg
[X] I'll talk to them later about it. Just to make sure things are okay.
[X] Chiyo's right, I'll just leave them alone. I'm sure they can work it out. They have before.
Even if the others aren't very concerned, I still kind of am. We're in a tough situation here, and we need everyone to be getting along and working together, not fighting each other behind Ringo's back. Maybe it's not a big deal and it's already out of their systems, but somebody should at least check to make sure that there aren't any hard feelings left over.
So I'll totally do that. Soon. Ish. Soonish.
I mean, it's not my job, and I'm already a bit busy worrying about the move that we need to get ready for in the remaining daylight. I still have to break the news to the others, get them to pack up quickly, and move us all out. Maybe having a talk about interpersonal conflict would be badly timed here. I can wait until later and see if it's really necessary to say anything, just as long as I promise myself that I'll actually do it if I see anything off between Yuzuki and Sumi. It seems pretty obvious that I can't rely on Ringo to step up at least.
Alright, with my reasoning (excuses really) squared away, let's get to (hopefully) more urgent business. That means we need a short meeting.
Ringo's been asking Chiyo about the specifics of the duel while I was considering things. She's not getting very clear descriptions though. I guess Chiyo wasn't interested enough to watch closely, or maybe she just didn't catch a lot of it. Chiyo is surprisingly bad at danmaku after all. Well anyway, it's not something that's all that important, so I don't feel bad about interrupting. "Chiyo, can you go grab Sumi?"
Chiyo looks all too ready to move away from Ringo's questioning. She's already standing up when she starts replying. "Sure I guess, but I still think it's not a big deal."
"It's not about the fight," At least not at the moment. "We need to have a meeting about what happened with Kanako," I explain. I can get Yuzuki out here without anyone going to get her, but somebody needs to get Sumi's attention manually.
"Oh yeah, that. Speaking of, good job on not getting killed or whatever," It's kind of hard to tell if she actually thinks that we were in any danger when she says it so easily. I wonder if any of the others had put much thought into what they were going to do if negotiations went badly. Probably not. I guess I could take that as a vote of confidence from them though.
Ringo laughs, though I think it's less about what Chiyo said and more about just wanting to seem confident. "Oh ho, we did much more than that, just you wait!" She declares happily, ignoring the fact that Chiyo is already walking away.
Ringo and I summarize the deal we made with Kanako to varied reactions from the other rabbits. We don't repeat absolutely everything, but get enough of the main points for everyone to know what's going on. The others need to know what's expected of us and what we're getting in return.
"So we get to live in a kick ass underground base while some eggheads figure out how to send us back home, all for stuff that isn't ours anyway and work that we're already used to doing? Goddamn, how did Kanako not know that she was getting flim-fucking-flammed?" Weird word choices aside, Sumi seems interested in the change of scenery, and doesn't have much of a problem working for Kanako. Given that her first impression of Kanako was 'the person who got me out of jail' I guess I can understand why.
"Giving up equipment that isn't ours doesn't really make it better," I ease Sumi down a little bit. Even though I agreed to the deal, I know it's not like we're getting a huge advantage here. "We also don't know what specifically she's going to ask us to do over the next couple of days. We could end up being busy."
"We might also not be," Ringo adds with a shrug. Yes that's also possible. When we don't have any jobs nailed down, you can speculate any way you want.
"Did we really need to move for any of the deal though?" Chiyo was also pretty okay with the deal up to a point. Once we started talking about the plan to move though, her expression got a bit less pleasant. Not that she was emoting that much in the first place mind you. "It just feels like we're running away from Aya. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth."
"Well we kind of are," Ringo chuckles wryly. Hey if you didn't like it, why did you let me decide while pretending you don't have a preference?
"The other option to stay here wasn't guaranteed to be safe, so moving felt like a better choice," Although I had been initially resistant to the idea too. I'm sure Chiyo will come around, she's just going through the same thought process as me. "We're already going to be moving back home in less than a week, so we'll just have to live with the idea that we aren't going to be the ones who break Aya's spying habit."
Chiyo thinks it over for a bit before shrugging. I think I catch her mumbling something about it being a pain. Although I agree, I'm still feeling like I made the right choice for the long (or maybe more like medium) term.
As for Yuzuki, it's obvious she still doesn't like Kanako, but was probably expecting this to happen if we succeeded in our negotiations, so it's not a surprise. She's more or less resigned at this point, I just hope she doesn't feel bitter about it. "Well, I suppose we can make this work, I really don't want to be stuck underground all the time though. Like for example in the mornings..." She gives Ringo and I a meaningful look.
"Yeah don't worry about it," Ringo quickly assures her. "Kanako says we can come and go, so as long as you're okay with making the trip out, you're fine."
Yuzuki catches Ringo's meaning and seems a little pleased that my request on her behalf went over well. "It's not exactly convenient, but fine. We can move."
"Great!" Ringo says happily. She didn't really need everyone's consent, but now we've more or less got it anyway. "Next step is to actually do it then. Kanako's expecting us back up at the shrine before the sun goes down, so we've only got a couple of hours to pack things up. Keep in mind that, while we'll be able to come back here and move more stuff if we need to, the camp is going to be left unsupervised for at least the rest of tonight. Aya could come around snooping."
"So hide the guns?" Sumi asks casually. Actually, I don't know how much hardware she's been keeping in her tent. That might have been a security issue waiting to happen.
"You should have already hidden the guns," Chiyo rolls her eyes. I completely agree.
"Just don't leave anything valuable or incriminating behind," Ringo ends the conversation there and adjourns the meeting. My mind is still a little bit blank on what all I should take with me, so I think I decide to spend a little bit of time just rifling through all of the stuff still in my tent.
Actually this isn't too bad. I thought I was going to end up with a still mostly empty backpack (if I even needed one) when I first started, but enough looking around and thinking means that it's got some weight to it now. It's not full or anything, but that's fine I guess. Maybe somebody else will have some stuff they need me to carry. Let's see...
I already had a bug-out bag prepared for an emergency, so I start by stuffing that in my backpack. It has enough supplies to last for a few days, so that covers most everything immediate right there. I've also got two flares, my pills, an extra canteen full of water, a little over half of that jar of dehydrated peaches from a few nights ago, the clothes I borrowed from Merlin (I changed out of them earlier today, but I still don't feel like I should just leave them just sitting around since they're not mine), one of the two way radios, the pillow I've been using here just in case they don't have one where we're going, and a towel. That's pretty respectable. There shouldn't be much that I can't handle with this.
Since the majority of my things were already prepared, it takes me less time than I expect to finish packing. When I leave my tent, I'm actually rather surprised to not be the first one gathering up in the center of camp. I guess I can understand Yuzuki, she's always going to know where everything she needs is. The only thing that would have slowed her down would be her needing to get everything organized in her own pack. No really though, what I'm actually surprised about is that Sumi's out here too. Already packed.
"-are NOT going to need that," I hear Yuzuki argue as I walk over and set my backpack down on the table. Oh great, are they fighting again? It seems kind of like it, but they also look a little bit less intense than when they were fighting earlier. If anything, Yuzuki looks embarrassed while Sumi's trying to hold back laughter. Hm, I wonder what this is about.
"I've got lots of stuff in here, and I might need some of it at some point," Sumi says casually, holding her backpack in one hand and shuffling the contents of it with the other. It looks like a mess in there, like she mostly just shoved a bunch of stuff from her tent inside. It's all probably somewhat important though. Actually, is she really gonna need extra ammo?
"You absolutely will NOT. at ANY POINT. Need THAT," Yuzuki insists urgently. She can tell the contents of everyone's packs instantly, that's true, but I kind of expected her to not say anything about other people's choices. I wonder what's provoking her to do that now.
Sumi lets out a small 'hm' noise before flipping her pack closed and slipping it around her back. "Like I said, you're gonna have to be more specific. I'm pretty dumb, you know?"
"You know what I'm talking about," Yuzuki snaps back. Actually, why is her face red? She's blushing?
My curiosity is really too strong here. "What's she talking about?" I ask Sumi, who apparently had been to preoccupied with her belongings to notice me coming over.
"Ah, here we go, this'll be fair. Seiran can tell us who's right," Sumi decides, although Yuzuki doesn't at all look like she agrees with the idea. Sumi turns to me anyway without waiting for a response. "So, I got a lot of stuff in my backpack here, you see?" She shrugs her shoulders a bit so I can hear the sounds of her things. I nod at her question, though it's obviously rhetorical. "So oooone or twooo items in here may have been really really fucking hard to get back on the Moon, so I don't want to leave them behind to get stolen, right?" Okay, I guess that's fair enough. I don't know what all would be difficult to get on the Moon though. Alcohol? She wouldn't keep that in her bag right next to everything else though, right? What if it leaked or something? "Yuzuki's saying that I shouldn't bother keeping them with me, even though she never said anything about me having them before."
"I understand why you have those... Things," Yuzuki cuts in, practically hissing now. "But I know you can be without them for a day. You're just acting inappropriate to try and get a reaction out of me and now you're going to try and get Seiran involved in something that she won't-"
"Yuzuki, what are you telling her to leave behind?" The mood isn't quite up to a full blown fight yet, but I can see it getting to that point if Yuzuki keeps ranting enough to get Sumi to stop being amused by whatever this situation is. I'll just hear what the actual problem is, settle it, and we can all move on.
"It's..." Yuzuki starts but quickly falters. Her face is getting more red now for some reason. "You wouldn't..." She starts again. I wouldn't what? "Never mind," She finally deflates. Sumi snickers victoriously, but nobody's explained the problem to me yet! Why is Yuzuki so embarrassed? Why is Sumi so smug about it?
I keep trying to get either of them to explain it, but don't get anywhere for the next few minutes. I don't get anything out of it other than Yuzuki's vague mention of 'inappropriateness' and Sumi saying something about 'contraband'. You know, it's frustrating dealing when people won't let me in on something like this.
Before I can get anything of value, Chiyo comes out of her tent with a very stuffed backpack. It looks big and puffed up, practically bursting at the seams, but it doesn't seem to be very heavy just from the way she's carrying it. She's not exactly struggling with it, but it's still throwing off her balance a bit. She walks over and sets her pack down, making a soft puff noise.
"Err," I'm about to ask what all she's bringing when the answer quickly comes to me. Right, what's in Chiyo's room? Her bedding. All those pillows and blankets. "Do you really need all of that?" I ask, trying to be as gentle as I can.
Chiyo stares down at her pack for more than a few seconds. "Yes," She answers, somewhat reluctantly. She actually looks a little embarrassed. Maybe I shouldn't press her too hard on this. Given how much Chiyo sleeps, it's probably important to her to be able to be comfortable while doing it. I don't know if she's going to have that much time underground to laze around, but whatever. It doesn't matter that much. The only thing I'm concerned about is how it looks and how difficult it might be for her to move in.
Actually, I think I can help with that. "Okay, that's fine then," I assure her. "But I've got some extra room in my bag, so if you need me to take some for you, I can."
Chiyo glances down again. "Fine," She decides. Wow, she's talking even less than usual. Maybe this is what being embarrassed (for whatever reason) does to her. Oh well, she gave me permission, so I'll be happy to help her out.
While I'm trying to stuff more than a few blankets into my bag, I see Ringo coming out of her tent. Instead of coming over to join the rest of us though, she instead heads over to the bunker. Hm, I wonder what all she's grabbing. It doesn't take her long to return, so it must not be something that's all that buried in there.
"Alright," Ringo starts talking before she's even made it all the way back to the table. She can clearly see that we're all waiting for her. All told, packing couldn't have taken much more than an hour. Even with the sun starting to set now, we should end up with plenty of time to get back to the shrine and get underground before it gets too dark to see. "You guys all ready to go?"
"Mostly," I answer her, though I'm a little bit curious now. "What did you need to grab from the bunker? Isn't most everything down there incriminating?"
"Mostly yeah, but it also has the refrigeration for the mochi and dango stuff. Thought I'd bring some of that to make a good impression on our new neighbors," Ringo happily declares, pulling her bag up on her back a little bit. "Plus, the dango are tactically important," She adds. That's... Technically true. Well, it's probably not necessary to bring much food along, but then I also brought some of my peaches, so I won't say anything.
We take ten or so more minutes to go through camp again, double checking for any evidence that we may have left behind. We could just have Yuzuki do it, but I think it's also nice to have a chance to say goodbye to the place. Even if we're probably going to come back sometime soon to pick up things that we've forgotten, we're still moving out formally now. After however many days of living here, it does feel a little bit odd to be moving on now.
Once finished, we double check with Yuzuki that Aya isn't watching, then fly up toward the peak of the mountain. It's not the longest trip, but it seems to be going a little slower. After a couple minutes of flying I realize that that's because Chiyo is lagging slightly. Even though I took a portion of her luggage for her, her pack is still a little bit big for her. It's messing with her aerodynamics, and she wasn't that fast to begin with.
Regardless, it's not actually that much of an issue. She's still capable of flying, so we get up the mountain and to the shrine without incident. This time, there's even someone waiting for us.
"Welcome!" Sanae calls from the ground before we've even landed. It looks like she isn't sweeping this time, so I guess she might have just been waiting for us.
"Hey Sanae," Ringo hits the ground first and greets the shrine maiden for the rest of us. Well, we've all met her before except maybe Sumi. "Did Kanako tell you what's going on?"
Sanae nods enthusiastically. Actually, her whole demeanor seems a little different compared to when we saw her before. She seems a little more animated and a little less business like. "Yeah, she told me everything. That was really surprising. To think that I talked to aliens a few days ago and didn't even realize it!"
Well, saying aliens is technically true, but I don't know why she's so excited about it. "I don't think we're that different from normal youkai," I point out weakly.
"Youkai from space!" Sanae quickly corrects me. "You even did the whole 'Take me to your leader' thing and I didn't even think twice about it!" She changes her voice to some weird robotic sounding one in the middle of that for some reason I don't get. "And I was worried that Gensokyo was getting boring, or that I was getting too used to things!"
"We're not the first people from the Moon down here," Chiyo mutters to the side, loud enough that we can all hear.
"That's true," Sanae admits. "But I've talked to Reisen before. She never tells me anything interesting about living in space. On top of that, she's acts totally normal all the time too. It's completely not what I would expect from someone from another planet!" Technically the Moon isn't a planet, it's a moon. Splitting hairs here though. "Hm, I guess it's technically still surprising if you expect to be surprised and aren't..."
I think we're pretty normal too, but I don't see any reason to crush Sanae's enthusiasm. She seems much more excited now than she was any other time I've seen her so far. Let's just move on before her happiness fades. "Anyway, we're supposed to go underground now, right?" I suggest.
"Oh, right, right!" Sanae snaps out of her thoughts about being or not being surprised and moves a bit closer to the rest of us. "Lady Kanako said that you were supposed to help move the spider robot underground, so let's go grab that, then I can lead you to the back entrance down."
"Right, lead the way then," Ringo says, starting to walk even before Sanae does.
Sanae quickly catches up and takes our group around the main building of the shrine and further back through the grounds. We head off a small path to the right until we come up to some kind of shed. I guess it's just for storage. When Sanae opens it up, it's definitely full of a lot of dusty old boxes and such. It looks like most of the things in here haven't been pulled out for a long time, though obviously the drone itself is a new addition.
Ugh, while it isn't a dusty mess like a lot of the other stuff, it's definitely a mess of a different type. The thing used to be just pure chrome, but is now dirty and dented in various places. It looks like it sustained a lot of damage (probably from danmaku) to the main body, then when the kappa got to it they started working from there. Tearing off parts of the plating to see the stuff inside. Two of the legs are also detached, and it looks like a couple others are going to join it soon.
"So, I'll warn you that it's pretty heavy, so you guys might have a bit of trouble carrying it all the way down," Sanae explains while Ringo and I move in closer to the broken down thing. "We can go slow if you need to, since I don't think it'd be good to drop it."
"Nah, we're fine, I got this," Ringo calmly declares, pulling out a couple of dango and quickly eating them.
Sanae seems a little bit disbelieving, but still watches Ringo's actions curiously. "What's that?"
Ringo holds up a hand. "Give it a minute," It does take a little while for dango to kick in to Ringo's system. I'm not sure exactly how it works though. It's much shorter than the time it would take for her to digest them, so maybe it's just when they start getting dissolved in her stomach or something? Ick, maybe it's not that important.
After a short wait, Ringo bends at the knees and gropes around on the drone for a little bit. Even if she's strong enough to lift it easily now, there's still some maneuvering she'll have to do in order to hold it properly. I think me and one of the others should carry the broken off legs at least. After a little bit of work, Ringo manages to get a good hold on the drone and lifts it up effortlessly.
"Wow~!" Sanae claps her hands happily as she steps out of the way for Ringo to bring the drone out of the shed. Once out in the open, Ringo puts it back down on the ground and basks in the applause. I guess the rest of us are pretty used to Ringo being ridiculously strong, so she must be enjoying somebody actually being impressed by her power. "So was that stuff you ate some kind of Moon medicine to make you strong?" Sanae guesses.
Well, it's not that far from the truth, but it's not correct either. "Mmmmmaybe," Ringo teases, holding out another dango for Sanae. "Here, why don't you try it out?"
Sanae quickly grabs the dango out of Ringo's hand and bites into it without a second thought. Isn't that a little too trusting? There's a brief flash of realization on her face, then confusion, probably from realizing it's something that she's eaten before. It's just an ordinary dango. She still eats the whole thing anyway. Once finished, Sanae looks down at herself as if she's expecting something to happen, even though she just saw that nothing visibly happened to Ringo.
"Well?" Ringo asks after a moment, obviously knowing that nothing is going to happen.
"Hmm," Sanae looks down at the drone, then back at herself, then bends over and gives the thing an experimental push. It doesn't budge much. "I don't think it's working. I think I feel something, but maybe I have to get used to it or something."
"Hm, maybe," Ringo agrees casually. I'm pretty sure I hear Sumi hiding laughter as Ringo picks the drone back up. "Shall we go?"
"Ah, sure!" Sanae happily agrees. Well, it was just a little joke, but I think Sanae enjoyed it anyway. She seems to be in a really good mood. Maybe I could talk to her while we head off to wherever it is we're going.
[ ] Talk to Sanae
- [ ] Ask about Sanae herself
- [ ] Ask about the Moriya shrine
- [ ] Ask about where we're staying
- [ ] Ask about the people we're staying with
- [ ] Ask about what work Kanako might make us do
- [ ] Ask about Kanako wanting to talk with the capital
- [ ] Tell Sanae that Ringo just gave her an ordinary dango
- [ ] Something else
[ ] Talk to somebody else (about what?)
[ ] Let's just get underground, then we can talk
tfw you outline a chapter and think 'yeah, this will be easy' then start writing it and it turns out to be 4.2k words long and you don't finish until 40 minutes after you wanted to go to bed. Oops. At least I like the update.