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File 12718103142.jpg - (143.14KB, 800x852, beb8c66223d08cb6732b602546e8dad3.jpg) [iqdb]
You take a sip from the gourd. Suika calling it firewater was an apt enough description; it feels as if you just washed a flow of lava down your throat. How call Mystia even drink this?

Thankful that you hadn't taken more than a sip, you halfheartedly hold it out towards Alice and say a bit hoarsely, "Wanna try?"

Alice's currently-amber eyes widen as she waves a hand half-panicky to ward the gourd off as she replies, "Oh no no, I'm very bad with alcohol. Suika's drink would certainly knock me out flat."

You shrug as you hand the gourd back to Suika, who glues it to her mouth and tips onto her back. Getting up, you and Alice leave the drunkards to their fun. You walk by Reimu again, who is still working on those paper charms. Wanting to try to strike up a little conversation, you ask, "Hey Reimu, what exactly are those anyway?"

Reimu looks up at you curiously. "You're still here? Well, these are luck charms. It's hard to come by money, so I got this idea to sell some of these down in the village."

She pauses for a moment, as she taps a finger to her chin while looking at you.

"I don't suppose you'd want to do me a favor, maybe give a good first impression to the local shrine maiden who is quite capable of kicking your ass horribly if you pissed her off, perhaps?"

Reimu's way of putting her request makes you wonder what other outsiders may have done to get on her bad side. For a second, you start having second thoughts about what you promised to Tenshi. This may be tricky.

"You'd like help selling these, I take it?" you ask, taking one of the charms off the table to look it over. Reimu sure has some good calligraphy skills, or at least you guess so. It's not like you can read the kanji inscribed on the paper.

Reimu plucks the charm out of your grasp and adds it back to the stack now in her hands as she stands up.

"I'll go with the two of you to the village. Once we're there, I'll tell you what to do."

That sounds simple enough. Maybe if you did a few things for Reimu and got on her nice side, maybe she won't lynch you after helping Tenshi later on.

She leads you to the small shed in the back of the shrine, and goes inside for a minute. Reimu comes out of the shed wheeling a small wooden cart and parks it in front of you.

"I'm sure you know what to do next."

Alice and Reimu lead the way while you drag the little cart behind you; the three of you leave the shrine behind in the questionably-capable hands of Suika. The walk to the village is a bit less than the distance to Alice's house. In fact, you recall the fork in the road that the three of you now take, so it must go towards the village.

On the way there, Alice and Reimu are engaging in some smalltalk. You don't really pay too much attention as you're more interested in looking at the scenery that passes by, or playing a bit with Rae and Shanghai who both ride on the cart. However, you catch the name "Marisa" at one point and decide to tune in.

"So Marisa hasn't stopped by the shrine either these last few days?"

Reimu shook her head as she replied in a somewhat perplexed voice, "Haven't seen any sign of her. While I appreciate the peace and quiet, it's really weird that she hasn't barged in for such a long time. For her, anyway."
"Should we stop by her place on the way back and check on her? I won't be the first to say I'm worried about her, but it is a bit troubling."
"Might as well. Maybe she ate another weird mushroom."

Marisa's been missing for a while, then? Another bit of info that might need some looking into later. After another fifteen minutes or so, the three of you come upon the village outskirts. As it is nearing noon, the road is bustling with people, and there are numerous vendor stalls open as well. There's a small open spot on the right side near what you figure might be a cafe. Reimu guides you there and tells you that this is where she usually sets up. The two of you park the cart, and set up a sign on the side that you assume advertises the luck charms. Alice seems to have wandered off along with Shanghai. You don't blame her if she got bored, though it seems hard for Alice to be bored considering what she normally does all day.

"So that's all you needed me to do?" you ask, as that was a pretty simple task afterall. Reimu wags her finger at you. "Nuh-uh, you're not done yet. I need you to help me get people interested in buying these charms. How you do it is up to you, I just want to be able to sell all of these before going home."

How are you going to get people interested in buying Reimu's charms? You look at Reimu, then at Rae, then the few people who pause to look at Reimu's stall, and finally the yakitori stand across the street manned by a recognizable white-haired girl with a bunch of ribbons in her hair. You also notice Alice is at the yakitori stand talking with the white-haired girl.

An idea starts to formulate in your head...


[ ] Write-in
[ ] Leave it to me
I could easily plan something but, to be frank, I'm curious about your idea, writefag.
[x] Leave it to me
[魚] Leave it to me
I don't mean to sound uncreative. It just sounds like you already have something cool in mind.
[x] Leave it to me

You've peeked my interest.
[x] Leave it to me
I had an idea about that had Reimu targeting a specific age demographic, but it was too complicated and nonsensical to work.

[x] Leave it to me
[X] Leave it to me

[X] Something that dosen't involve getting messed up
[X] Something that hopefully dosen't piss anyone else off
[x] Leave it to me

[c] Leave it to me.

How... interesting.
Your idea in mind, you grab one of the charms.

"I'll take this. Reimu, I'll be back in ten minutes."

Reimu gives you a curious look, but shrugs as she turns away to convince a potential customer to buy a charm. You sneak off into the crowd, and hope that not too many people had seen you with Reimu. But then, that's why you are going to wait for a bit before executing your plan. First, you need your second actor...

You arrive at the yakitori stand swiftly. Alice is still engaged in conversation with the apron-wearing yakitori girl, whom you recognized correctly as Mokou. After glancing over your shoulder to see what's happening around Reimu(not much), you take a seat next to Alice and turn to her with an overly-nice tone to your voice.

"Alice, can I ask a little favor?"
"Stop that."
"Stop what?"
"That voice. It sounds horrid. And what favor, may I ask?"

You lay out your idea to Alice. You notice Mokou listening in on you two from where she's grilling another customer's order.

"...You expected me to say yes?"
"Uh, I didn't think that far actually."

Alice closes her eyes and sighs, pressing two fingers to her temple as if warding off a headache. Mokou only grins from what she overheard, while Alice stands up from her seat and faces you with her arms held akimbo.

"I'll help you this time, since it's for Reimu. Next time, please think your idea through first, Charles."
"Okay. Sorry about that."

As you promised Reimu, you arrive back at her cart by the ten minute time limit you gave. There's a bit of a crowd forming, but nobody seems to be buying. Reimu herself is haggling with a tall man who seems to doubt if the charms are worth the paper they're inscribed upon.

You glance at Alice, and she nods to show her readiness. Taking a breath, you grab Alice's hand and hold the charm you took in your free hand, and barge through the few people between you and Reimu.

"Miss Hakurei! Miss Hakurei!" you yell out in a gleeful tone as you drag Alice with you towards the cart, waving the charm around excitedly. Reimu looks to you in surprise, as does the tall man.

"This charm you sold me! It worked, it really worked! I confessed today and she really said yes! Thank you so much!" You pour out thanks in a grand show of a happy young man who finally found love. As the final part of the act, you turn to Alice and pull her into an embrace, which she only slightly fumbles before returning it. With your face so close to hers, you can feel the heat from her forehead and her reddened ears... is she really blushing?

Your eyes flick back towards Reimu, who has her jaw dropped as she watches the two of you. There's a whistle from the crowd as another young man storms forward and shouts, "I'll buy two charms, Miss Hakurei!"

The stormgates open, as a bunch of onlookers now crowd around the cart and call out their orders. Meanwhile, you secretly enjoy the position you're in right now; it totally wasn't an ulterior motive to your plan, it really wasn't. No sirree.

"Too long," mutters Alice, which you can hear plain as day as it goes right into your ear. Oh crap, she must mean... You quickly release your hold on Alice and step back from her: her face is a nice warm shade of crimson right now, and she seems to consciously be trying to steady her breathing.

"Got a little... got a little carried away there, Charles Von Braun?"

Ouch, full name usage. You hang your head sheepishly as you manage a "Yeah, sorry about that."

"Heard that one before!"

You look to the left as Mokou steps out through the crowd, a look of amusement adorning her face along with a wide, toothy grin. An unlit cigarette is clutched between her teeth.

"I seriously can't believe Miss socially-challenged Alice here actually went through with that! What magic you use, kid?"

Alice coughs as she composes herself. "Well pardon me for not having such experience like you, Mokou. This was merely done out of wanting to do a favor for Reimu, and Charles so far has shown himself to have a good upright character, so I felt it was perfectly acceptable to do this, as embarrassing as it was."

Alice then turns to face you and pokes her finger into your chest, a bit hard. "I think you would do well to treat me to lunch in exchange for this... favor."

You shrug in a faux-defeated manner, and notice that the crowd is already dispersing. Reimu lets out a whoop, grabbing the three of yours attention. The stack of charms are all gone, and in their place is a pile of coins.

"Sold out! All sold out! I have money! Whoohoo!" she cheers, pumping a fist skywards. She then runs over to you and gives you a brief hug, before stepping back and taking a deep bow, a grateful smile on her face. "That was great, however surprising it was! Thanks for your help, Charlie! You're welcome at the shrine anytime."

You smile back, although you hear a little voice in the back of your head repeating the promise you made to Tenshi.

At Mokou's insistence, the three of you are treated to a lunch of grilled chicken and rice with pickles, at a slight discount('For friends only!' - Mokou)

As you go to pay for yours - and Alice's as requested - you realize something as you pull out money... American dollars.

"Uh, crap, I don't suppose you take foreign currency?"

Mokou dismisses your concern with a wave of her hand. "Don't worry about it, kid. Rinnosuke's got a sort of currency exchange set up now for outsider monies. Those're dollars, right? Lemme check the list he gave me. You can give me a chunk of what you got and I'll give you some coin that's actually worth something around here."

Mokou refers to a clipboard she has on the end of the counter and tells you how much you owe in terms in recognize. You give her the appropriate cash along with some extra to exchange, whereupon she slips the bills into a lockbox next to the clipboard; she then pulls out a number of copper and gold coins and gives those to you. Snapping her thumb up from her fist in a reverse-motion of flicking a lighter, a small flame bursts up from the tip of her thumb, which she uses to light a second cigarette - the first long been lit and smoked out.

"By the way, I'm Mokou. Mokou of the Fujiwara Clan. Not like that means too much around here, just old habit. First time I've seen you, but you're pretty familiar with Alice here, I can tell," Mokou once again grins with the jab she makes.

"Well, actually I've only been here about two days at most. Oh, and I'm Charles Von Braun. Apparently just one of a few outsiders that have been coming to Gensokyo recently, at least by what Alice tells me."

Mokou hops up onto a stool on her side of the counter and leans back precariously, her feet propped up on the corner of the counter as she interlaces her hands behind her head.

"Ya tellin' me kid. Alice actually don't know the whole picture here. Well, I don't either, but hey, that's Miz Yukari's job, ainit? You see, we've actually been getting a bunch of you outsiders coming through in the last couple months. Reimu's gone and sent most of them back across the border, but y'know, that ain't normal. So I've been thinking either Yukari's screwin' around with some new plan she cooked up, or the border's got some hole in it. Or something like that."

She lifts her feet off the counter and slams her stool back down level to the ground.

"But enough of that story, you got clothes to buy right? I'm sure Alice could find you something snappy."

You thank Mokou for the food, and you, Alice and Reimu go off to find you something to wear. Both girls start talking at once, insisting they know a good place to get clothes. Apparently the two places they're talking about are right next to each other, as you've just arrived in front of a pair of clothing stores: the buildings are a bizarre contrast to each other as the one on the left is decidedly Asian in design, likely Japanese, while the right building has the makings of a Victorian-era sort of house(or wait, is that writing on the sign German?) Alice and Reimu are, of course, standing in front of their respective choices.

Oh, decisions.


[ ] Right European house, Alice
[ ] Left Japanese house, Reimu

I think it should be obvious what each choice will give. If you would like, also describe what clothes Alice/Reimu picks out for Charles.
[x] Right European house, Alice
[x] Right European house, Alice
Preferably something with a bit of a gentlemanly flare to it.
Someone by the name of Von Braun needs proper western clothing.
[x] Right European house, Alice
File 127198736585.jpg - (81.83KB, 297x444, sherlock-holmes.jpg) [iqdb]
[x] Right European house, Alice
-[x] Pick related. No hat.
Sherlock Holmes' clothes are an everlasting classic. In my opinion, he should go without the hat since it doesn't really suit my idea of him.
[x] Right European house, Alice

A yellow shirt with a thick black horizontal zigzagging stripe.

And maybe a bowler hat.
[x] Right European house, Alice
File 127200079874.jpg - (20.27KB, 550x362, french-beret-black-550.jpg) [iqdb]
[c] >>20841 but with beret in place of the hat.
[X] >>20845

I'm loving this story more and more.
Now that I think about it, he has a kinda fancy suit under that, doesn't he?
So all he has to do to prepare for a special occasion is.. take off one clothing's article? Awesome and practical!
[x] Right European house, Alice

Japanese clothes can get quite fancy, but nothing beats a pimped-out Victorian suit. Nothing.
I like this idea.
[+] Right European house, Alice
-[+] Medium brown trousers, belted about the waist rather than suspendered
-[+] Men's white button-up shirt, thin material
-[+] Dark brown vest w/ pockets
-[+] Beige longcoat
-[+] Dark grey cabbie hat
-[+] Dark brown lace-up boots

Leather shoes are nice to look at, but not so functional when you're walking through the forest.
I love this story.

[x] Right European house, Alice
[x] Right European house, Alice
[x] Right European house, Alice
Let's go with a Sherlock Holmes-ish style, like >>20841 suggested.
[x] Right European house, Alice

I wonder if Alice's spoiling for an opportunity to play dress up on a human male rather than her regular dolls.
Only one way to find out!
File 127351027378.jpg - (956.65KB, 1600x1200, 9282098f927c12696d4d14e04dec2344346a3730.jpg) [iqdb]
I don't really see why he can't look at both. One could just be for purchasing while the other would be window shopping.

It's good to have a variety, plus who knows what one or another have that would pique Charles' interests.


I can only imagine what girlish glee she may have at such an opportunity; especially if Charles is very willing to have her give suggestions.

Shame she may end up hiding it all...
My apologies for the delay for the next update, but currently my studies and end-of-semester exams are taking up a lot of my time and energy. I will try to put up the next part soon, however.
He lives!

Goodluck on those tests!
Are the tests over, op?
Yeah, semester is over, tests and stuff all done. Was at Fanime Con after finals, then got sidetracked with some RL obligations once I got back from there. However, from here on out I'm pretty much free so I'll be able to devote much more time and energy to the story. I'll try to put up the next part tonight.

/forest/ LIIIIVES!!
I've taken everyone's suggestions into consideration. European house it is!


As interested as you are in seeing what Reimu has planned for your outfit, you feel that you would be more comfortable with something more familiar. "Let's check out that one then, Alice," you say, pointing to the store behind her. Alice nods in approval as Reimu sighs and shrugs, joining the two of you as you enter the store. The owner, an overweight, gray-haired man in a brown pinstriped suit from an era you barely remember from history class, stands up from behind the counter and greets the three of you. "Ah, Alice my dear, I have not seen you come by for a long time now. I see you've brought some friends along?"

Alice smiles and bows her head. "It's been a while, Sir Douglas. I have a friend here who is in need of local clothing. He's a... guest here in Gensokyo." She gestures toward you when she says "guest."

Douglas walks around the counter to take a look at you. The man is a fair bit shorter than you, with tiny black eyes sizing you up from behind a pair of brass-rimmed spectacles. He hums and nods a few times as he looks you over, producing a tape measure to take a few measurements of your height, arm length, your waist size, and he also asks about your shoe size, weight, and other details about your measurements. Alice watches with a knowing eye: you get the feeling she's done this as well. Maybe for her dolls?

"Excellent, excellent. So, what kind of clothing are you looking for, lad?"
"Well, I'm not re-"
"I have something in mind already, Sir Douglas. I have a good memory, I think I recall seeing the piece I'm thinking of over in that section," interrupts Alice, pointing over towards the far side of the store. "Shall we go over there so I can point it out to you?"

Douglas nods in return, his hands idly wringing themselves together. He moves off, with Alice close behind. However, she pauses next to you and then suddenly pats you on the shoulder, once. "Charles, stay."

You stare at Alice's back as she walks off with Douglas. Did she just...? Nearby, Reimu is giggling at the exchange. "I think she likes you, Charlie. Normally she's very formal with her guests. I mean, she still is with you, but she's never done something like that before."

That's an interesting tidbit to know. You're silent for a bit, though you can hear the indistinct murmur of Douglas and Alice's voices from the other side of the store. Hold on, you're here alone with Reimu. Maybe you could ask something on your mind...

"Reimu, do you really need Tenshi around the shrine? I mean, I talked to her for a bit, and it sounds like she's already worked off the debt she owes you."

Reimu's smile falls. Uh-oh? "Funny you asked. The fact Tenshi is still at the shrine at all is entirely her doing. She has nowhere to go, she was literally banned from Heaven, and it might be a while before her dad forgives her. I like to think what I'm having her do is simply... rent payment."

"Well, what if she had somewhere else to go? Like, I dunno, say the Moriya Shrine offered to take her in."

Reimu folded her arms across her chest as she cocked her head to the side. "I suppose that could happen, Sanae's pretty virtuous in some regards. However, Tenshi won't be going anywhere without that sword of hers. I suppose if she managed to find it, I could agree to let her go. I'll be honest, Tenshi sucks at cleaning up the house. She does know how to boil water properly at least though..."

There's a scuffle of shoes on wood as Alice and Douglas return, the latter holding a set of folded clothes in his arms. Wait. You peer closer. That's a lot of clothing. He comes up to you, and instinctively you hold out your arms as he dumps the pile in your grasp.

"Please, take your time, dear customers. I'll be patiently awaiting your purchases!" says Douglas as he returns to his seat behind the counter. Alice waves her hand at you to follow her, a smile barely restrained from creeping out on her lips.

Oh boy. You have a good idea of why there's so many articles of clothing in the pile you're holding. Guess she's still quite a human girl at times afterall.

Alice takes you to the dressing room in the back of the store, with Reimu tagging along out of curiosity. Rae and Shanghai float alongside you, one on each side of your head. Inside, you dump the clothes on the bench along the wall, and Alice starts browsing through it. Reimu steps over next to her to look at the clothes Alice is picking out.

"Do you know what is interesting about this store, Charles?"

You shake your head in response, of course you wouldn't know. Alice finally lets the grin she'd be repressing break out onto her face. "This store has clothing spanning from as far back as the Middle Ages, yet even carries contemporary pieces from your own time. The possibilities and combinations are endless. And to think, this is just clothing from a western sphere of culture. The store next door covers fashion from all ages of Japan, and there's another store down the street for Chinese and Indian wear. All of these places have clothing from thousands of years ago hanging right next to clothes from within the last decade in the outside world."

That's pretty amazing. You're now curious to see what it would look like to combine some good ol' samurai robes with something from the 1920s. Probably offensive to the sight, but it sounds like it could be fun to mix and match. Alice has beaten you to the punch though, as she stands up from browsing the pile of clothing.

"First things first. Your clothes, off. Everything."

Wait, what, did she just tell you to strip? In front of two girls? Neither of whom you've met in person for longer than two days?

"Uh, Alice, that's a bit hasty... I mean, I've only met you guys for maybe a day, isn't this going a bit fas-"

Your words freeze in place, as does your body. Alice has a hand held up towards you with a faint light-blue glow emanating from her fingers; you realizes that she had been muttering something like a chant while you had been protesting. Alice's currently bright yellow eyes squint in glee, and you'd swear cat ears would have grown out of her head if she could do that. "That stasis spell will keep you nice and still, Charles. Don't worry, I'll remove it once we finish. Reimu, you can join in as you like."

Both girls advance on you with fingers curled like claws, and playful grins on their face. Rae hovers off behind them, looking at you a bit worriedly, while Shanghai puts up her little hands in a defeated "nice knowing you" pose.


It lasted over an hour. Alice and Reimu stripped you bare, and went to town using you as a human-sized dress-up doll. Various suits, blouses, robes, and footwear went on and off in swift fashion. There was even a suit of armor at one point. Then it started getting weirder, as things like frills, ribbons, and a tuba were thrown in the mix. Even though you yourself could not move under Alice's spell, the girls could position your body however they wanted, and they took this detail as far as they could for their giggling amusement.

It finally ended though, as you think back on it while sitting down on the bench clad in your new clothes. The last pieces of clothing Alice dressed you up in was the outfit she had picked out for you; it was a pretty spiffy black three-piece suit, with Victorian-era leather boots and a white button-up blouse underneath, complete with a black necktie. After dressing you up in it, and finally releasing you from the spell, Alice and Reimu mentioned that something seemed missing, and both girls vacated to find whatever articles of clothing they had in mind, leaving you alone with Rae and Shanghai.

Rae seemed to be wholly embarassed about the situation as she nervously patted your shoulder. Maybe she was trying to reassure you about your loss of dignity. Shanghai on the other hand, was lying on her side in midair, head propped up on one arm and puffing on an imaginary cigarette. Doll, please.

Standing up, you ruffle Rae's hair to show her that you're just fine. Alice and Reimu were just having fun, they surely didn't mean anything bad towards you by using your frozen body for their amusement. Nahhhh. Anyway, you take a look at yourself in the mirror. Y'know, if you had a brown coat and that one kind of cap you don't remember the name for, you'd look like a certain famed detective...

"We're ba~ck."

Reimu's sing-songy announcement catches your attention as you turn around. Both Alice and Reimu hold a different piece of clothing in hand: Alice has a gray beret, while Reimu is holding something that looks like a Japanese sleeveless jacket. Walking up to you, Alice smiles as she plops the beret on your head. "Charles, I'd like to both apologize and thank you. Apologize for hurting your pride, and thank you for being a wonderful mannequin."

You shrug in response. "That's alright, really. I mean, you guys were just having fun, it's not that big a deal."

Alice steps off to the side as Reimu approaches with the jacket. It's an interesting piece of clothing: it's a rich, dark red color, with black lapels from the collar down to the bottom edge of the jacket. On closer inspection as Reimu holds it up for you to see, there's rather meticulous design in the fabric, on the back of the jacket in particular is a design that resembles a crow's claw. The back of the jacket splits at the bottom into two short coattails.

"This is called a jinbaori. It's originally worn by samurai of rank when in camp before battle or other important situations. Nowadays though people wear it more like a dress jacket or just to look cool."

Interesting. It's not the kind of coat you were expecting, but you try it on anyway. Now that you think about it, this is what a lot of fashion in Touhou is: an amalgam of Western and Eastern concepts. Okay, with your outfit it's a lot more basic than that, but...

"Not bad." The jacket has pockets on the inside too, so it's not entirely for show either.

Using the money you exchanged with Mokou, you pay Douglas for your new clothes. He gives you a plastic shopping bag to carry your old clothes in as a free bonus. "Thank you for shopping at Douglas'! Perhaps we will meet again, lad."

Bidding Douglas goodbye, the three of you step outside. Reimu goes over to her cart and takes up the handles as she turns to you and says, "Well, I'm done here for the day. Thanks a bunch for your help Charlie, you're welcome by the shrine any time."

"I had fun Reimu, if you ever need a hand with anything again, feel free to ask."
"Oh, you just know I'm going to take full advantage of your offer now, right?" Reimu giggles again with a sly smile on her face. You shrug and wave goodbye to her as she starts walking off.

Alice turns to you and asks, "We're also done here too. Do you want to walk around town more or head back home?"

Do you:
[ ] Walk around town
[ ] Head back to Alice's house
File 127618392957.png - (165.44KB, 600x410, f689301fba9a82878f043ae67c4c0c59c74180e7.png) [iqdb]
>you'd swear cat ears would have grown out of her head if she could do that

Most fitting if that's the only way she shows a lot of excitement.

>Shanghai on the other hand, was lying on her side in midair, head propped up on one arm and puffing on an imaginary cigarette.


[X] Walk around town

Alice does not seem to mind continuing the tour. She may even show some more locations that would be not only interesting but also special to her;Not to mention it would give Charles an excuse to showcase his two lovely companions as well as continue to observe Rae's behavior around town.
>However, she pauses next to you and then suddenly pats you on the shoulder, once. "Charles, stay."

So we're her dog, now? Oddly...I'm ok with that.

>Doll, please.

I lol'd more than I should have at that.

Awesome Alice is awesome.

[X] Walk around town

Chance for more encounters, plus we can show off our new outfit.
[X] Walk around town
Glad you started writing again, op. :)
[c] Walk around town

Good to see you back.

>Shanghai on the other hand, was lying on her side in midair, head propped up on one arm and puffing on an imaginary cigarette.

I must be the only one who wants to give Shanghai trench coat and fedora.
[x] Walk around town
...Hardboiled detective Shanghai?

...This makes me think of that one chapter of Yotsuba where she went around repeating lines and scenes from the crime drama she'd seen.
[X] Walk around town

[X] Walk around town

Can't leave just yet.
Shanghai seemed more like having a post-sex smoke to me as to add another injury to Charles' dignity. But Rae's proving herself to be a supportive 'daughter'
[X] Walk around town

But seriously, you know what sort of route we should go for? Rae and Shanghai, to hell with any other Touhous.
That's what I thought when I read it, too. We have been defiled and used.

True...our dignity has been thoroughly stripped ;_;

But it's Alice, so it's ok.

Well if there ever comes an H-scene anywhere in this story, we know what kind of stuff Alice and Reimu are is into~
[x] Walk around town
[x] Walk around town
I really need to find a way to keep myself motivated to write...


You decide to walk around town a bit more before heading home. Every once in a while as you walk down the streets, Alice points out certain places of interest.

"...and that there is the schoolhouse for the village children. In recent years, Miss Keine has also been accepting youkai students. I've tried to encourage Mystia to go, but she says she wants nothing to do with 'dirty human kids.'"

Alice gives a sigh tinged with exasperation at this. "She can't even read, and expects to run a grilled eel business? She had to get somebody else to write her signs and menu for her."

Meanwhile, you find yourself surveying the schoolyard; it looks like class had ended a short while ago, as several children are playing in the yard. Amongst them, there are a few that are noticeably different, what with having wings or other non-human features.


[ ] Watch for a bit more
[ ] Head back to Alice's
[x] Head back to Alice's
[x] Watch for a bit more
[x] Head back to Alice's
[X] Watch for a bit more

The best way to see how well two different groups get along is to see what their kids do.
[X] Head back to Alice's

I don't think we want to be possibly thought of as a pedophile.
[X] Head back to Alice's

Charles will know more about the school soon enough, for now head back.
[X] Watch for a bit more
[X] Watch for a bit more
[x] Head back to Alice's
[x] Watch for a bit more

Hoping for more of Alice's thoughts on human-youkai relations.
[x] Watch for a bit more


Cue sudden appearance by Keine and then a huge debate that ends up turning into a danmaku battle over ideals.
[x] Head back to Alice's
We've been dragging Alice around long enough, lets not intrude any more.
[x] Watch for a bit more
[x] Ask Alice about human-youkai relations

She had her fun in the clothing store, she can wait a little longer.
[x] Head back to Alice's
-[x] Ask Alice about human-youkai relations on the way
[x] Head back to Alice's
-[x] Ask Alice about human-youkai relations on the way
[x] Head back to Alice's
-[x] Ask Alice about human-youkai relations on the way

Sounds good
After a few more moments of watching the children, you and Alice begin the walk back home.

"Alice, how well do youkai and humans get along in Gensokyo?" you ask out of the blue as you reach the edge of the Forest of Magic.

Alice glances sideways at you as she holds her hands up to catch Shanghai out of the air. Bringing the doll in close to her chest, she keeps walking forward along the path as she responds.

"It's a complex relationship."

Following behind her with Rae floating above your head, you ask what she means.

"Well... everything you've seen today is an example of just one side of this relationship between us. You remember when we ran into Mystia? That's a little glimpse at a different relationship we may have with humans."

Alice continues to gaze forward as she speaks, her focus seemingly away from you.

"You knew about Gensokyo before you came here. Perhaps then you know how things used to be... how youkai would hunt humans for food, and humans would hunt youkai out of fear. However, this relationship still continues today, a deeper-lying scar that can't be simply erased with smiles and laughter."

There is silence for several minutes as you think over what she has told you. Alice suddenly halts, and you slow to a stop beside her as well.

"Mystia, despite her words, is not overtly dangerous. She used to be some time ago, but since becoming my friend and also through her exposure to Reimu and Suika, Mystia has drifted away from the base youkai desires. It's why she has taken interest in running that grilled eel cart, afterall."

Alice turns around to face you, her crimson eyes hardened and serious.

"However, while youkai like myself and Mystia can be found all over Gensokyo, there are many youkai of a more... base nature. These lesser creatures do not have the capability of reason or empathy. They thrive in the dark, they feast on fear and malice. The classic portrayal of youkai, that is something you should always caution yourself with in this world."

Turning back towards the path, Alice cautions you with one more piece of advice. "Sometimes though, the ones you really should fear are not the wild beasts, but rather..."

She trails off into silence, then looks over her shoulder and smiles at you. "I find this subject unsettling, don't you? Let's head home and prepare for supper. I have more dolls to work on as well."

Without waiting for you, she starts walking down the path at a brisk pace, and you hurry to catch up.

The day was eventful, and you made new friends and acquaintances. Winding down with supper and helping Alice with her doll-making, you find little time to reflect on her cautious words nor the circumstances that brought you to this world.

It becomes less and less prominent in your mind as the week passes. Over this course of time, you become something of Alice's assistant. The primary job at hand that you both focus on is studying Rae, how she is different from Shanghai and the other dolls, and how she is connected to you.

On the side, Alice also begins to teach you some magic. Apparently, ever since you arrived in Gensokyo, you've started to emanate a very low aura of magic that Alice noticed after a couple days of you living in her house. "If Marisa can learn this stuff, surely you can manage a little as well!" were Alice's own words for doing this. Maybe it was just another interesting thing for her to do, as well.

As the week winds down, you remember your promise to Tenshi, and also what Reimu told you. Perhaps you should go and carry through with your word.


Pick a color
[ ] Purple
[ ] Black
[ ] Green
[ ] White
[X] Purple

It calls to me...
[X] Purple

The strongest colour.
An update!

[x] White

Cirno want to have a word with you.

[X] Blue
[X] Green
[X] Purple

It's no red, but it'll do for the moment.
Her blood is purple. Trust me on this one.
[x] Purple
Yes, it has to be this.
[x] Black
[x] Purple
[X] White

I love plain vanilla!
[X] Purple People Eater
[x] Purple
Royalty! This is strange time to be polling for everyone's favorite color.
Author's hint: The colors correspond to either a character, location, or object.
[x] Purple

it's part of Yukari's getup! Least I'm hoping it means her.
there's ony a 1% chance of being wrong.
Suddenly, Kogasa.
[x] Purple
Okay, the purple votes outnumber the others by such a huge margin, I'm just gonna call the vote here. I'll try to have the next part up tomorrow, for now I sleep.
How come all writefag deadlines nowdays are lies.
My apologies. But other things have come up I need to deal with so I dunno how soon I'll be able to get it all written. I'll have it up sooner than the last update, though.
File 128014645854.jpg - (143.40KB, 599x599, 122008474118.jpg) [iqdb]
In what days were they not?
The morning rays of light that seep in through your blinds are warm as they touch your cheeks. Your eyes crack open as you drift out of slumber into the groggy stage of "I just woke up." The motions of gathering your clothes, taking a shower, getting dressed, combing your hair and brushing your teeth take their usual time, as meanwhile Alice is making breakfast once again. Rae and Shanghai are both in the kitchen already by the time you arrive. As you attack your fried eggs with your fork, you bring up what's on your mind to Alice.

"You don't mind if I headed over to the Hakurei Shrine today, do you?"

Alice puts down her teacup as she looks at you questioningly. "Whatever for?"

You remind her of the promise you made to Tenshi, and also mention that Reimu did not seem if she would actually mind if Tenshi left. Giving you a bit of a hard look, Alice says, "You still haven't gone back there yet? It's been a week since last you spoke with that girl. Very well, we'll postpone the research for today, so you best get your rear over there as soon as possible."

You finish up breakfast, but Alice refuses your offer to help clean up, citing what she just said about you needing to go over to the shrine right away. Grabbing your coat, you call for Rae; the flying doll zips out through the kitchen door and latches onto your shoulder with a bright expression on her face. Seems she's happy to go out for a bit, it's been a bit rough on her the last few having to go through Alice's tests and observations.

As you walk through the forest, you think about all that you've learned so far the last several days. Firstly, Rae. The doll is very much alive and conscious from what you can tell; she needs no input from a puppeteer to take any actions. She is also capable of making her own decisions, and seems to feel emotions as well, including joy and pain. In the combat test, she displayed the same capabilities as the other Shanghai dolls, with heightened speed and manueverability. She also seemed particularly capable at melee combat, so Alice worked on fashioning a lance specifically for Rae.

As for you, you have made some progress in the area of magic thanks to Alice's tutoring. Nothing particularly grand like what Alice can do or what you assume Marisa is capable of, but you can at least fly! Well it takes a bit of work, and you're pretty slow, but that's still quite something to learn in just a few days. You can also manage some danmaku, but it's rather weak as it stands right now. Regardless, at least you're not completely defenseless like you originally were when you arrived in Gensokyo, and with Rae around you feel a bit safer walking in the Forest of Magic.

It's not too long until you find yourself at the shrine. Once again, the first person you meet after ascending the stone steps is the very girl you were hoping to find. Tenshi is wearing the same miko robe she was the first time you had come here, and is once again sweeping the grounds around the shrine.

"Uh, hey there," you greet as you walk up behind her.

She spins around in surprise, and recognizes you after a moment. "Charlie!" She drops her broom and lunges at you, grabbing you in a tight hug with her face buried in your chest. "When you didn't come back I thought you had forgotten your promise! I'm so happy you remembered!" she utters in a mixture of trepidation and relief. Gingerly you raise your hands up and pat her head with one and return the hug with the other. After a few moments you release and step back from each other.

"So, uh, want to try and find your sword now? I'm free for the whole day," you explain.

Tenshi nods vigorously. "The sooner the better! But I don't where to start looking, I just know Reimu said it would be in a place that no one would ever look."

Well that does narrow down the possibilities...


[ ] Search the lake out behind the shrine
[ ] Search the storage shed
[ ] Search the shrine's altar
[ ] Search the donation box

Note: The previous choice you made did not actually affect this story segment, but rather what's going to happen very soon.
[X] Search the lake out behind the shrine
[X] Search the storage shed
[X] Search the shrine's altar
[X] Search the donation box
[X] Search under Reimu's miko clothing. While she's wearing them.
[x] Search the donation box
-[x] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
[x] Search the storage shed
[x] Search the lake out behind the shrine
Eh, we need to find the sword, no point in not including all the places in the search, modified the order a bit though, to get the places fastest to check out of the way immediately.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
Reimu doesn't even have a god, so the altar would naturally be unkempt and unvisited. A perfect place to hide something.
[x] Search the donation box
-[x] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
[x] Search the storage shed
[x] Search the lake out behind the shrine

Works for me~!
[x] Search the donation box
-[x] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
[x] Search the storage shed
I didn't know there was a lake behind the shrine.
[x] Search the donation box
-[x] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
[x] Search the storage shed
[x] Check Reimu's sleeves
File 128096613310.jpg - (495.38KB, 572x800, a86f00f02c43cc74036d38d10290f91c.jpg) [iqdb]
[c] Search the donation box.
-[c] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[c] Search the shrine's altar.
[c] Search the storage shed.
Catgirl Shanghai~

[X] Search the donation box

In and around.
[x] Search the donation box

The donation box, nobody ever goes there >_>
[x] Search the donation box
[X] Search the donation box

It's in the donation box.
> >_>
What the fuck?


You do not do that here, or anywhere on this site.
[X] Search the donation box
[X] Search the shrine's altar

No one checks there anyway.
[x] Search the donation box
-[x] Check for a false bottom on the box.
[x] Search the shrine's altar
File 128265288235.jpg - (266.38KB, 733x803, 06a5ada8efa7792c7afa422e5ebfe6d8.jpg) [iqdb]
Update? Shanghai is waiting, you know.
'Oh come on, this has got to be one of the easiest guessing games ever,' you think to yourself. A place where nobody would look? At the Hakurei Shrine? Well certainly that has to be in this donation box right... here.

Your train of thought grinds to a halt as you lift the top off the donation box. It's as empty as ever. Setting aside the top, you feel around inside the box for any false bottoms or whatnot. Nope, nothing.

Well. Now that you think about it, Reimu must be a few steps ahead of you here. Most anyone who frequents the shrine and/or knows Reimu would know about the donation box often being, ah, QUITE empty. Thus, hiding something there would actually be a place some people would think to look.

Tenshi glances in the empty donation box while you brainstorm. Okay, if you were Reimu, and you were hiding something in a place nobody would think to look...

You scratch off the storage shed and the small lake behind the shrine off your list, along with anywhere inside Reimu's home. You also take into account that Reimu doesn't seem the type to go completely out of her way to hide something like the sword... so...

"Oh hey! I found it!"

Tenshi's voice catches your attention, and you look in her direction. She's standing over near the altar in the front of the shrine... and holding the Hisou-no-Tsurugi.

Dang, right when you were about to suggest searching there too!

"It suddenly makes sense! So that's why Reimu told me to clean everything except the altar! She said she would clean it, but it's actually really dusty here..."

You laugh a little as you replace the top to the donation box. Brushing your hands off, you start walking towards the back of the building.

"Let's go tell Reimu that you're leaving."
"Go tell her for me, I'm gonna get changed out of these lame robes!"

With that, Tenshi runs off around the other side of the building. Shrugging, you continue around to the back to find Reimu sitting there on the porch with a sly smile on her face.

"You guys aren't particularly quiet, you know. Of course, Tenshi suddenly running inside with that sword was also quite telling."

Reimu uncrosses her arms and places her hands behind her, leaning back. "You're going to have Tenshi stay over at Alice's place, right? I wonder how long it'll be..."

You make some sort of affirmative noise in response, but any conversation you had in mind is halted by Reimu as she peers up at Rae.

"I've been curious about that Shanghai doll. She was with us the day you helped me in town, right?"
"Yeah, she was. Her name's Rae."

"I don't know why I didn't notice it back then, but you know that doll is cursed, right?" Reimu's eyes have grown serious as they stare at the floating doll near your head.

"Oh that. Yeah, I know," You chuckle before taking the next few minutes to explain to Reimu the situation behind Rae's existence. Reimu's expression softens, but there's still an edge to her voice when she responds.

"I can't say I completely approve of that method... I'll have to visit the mountain and ask Hina a few questions about this. I suggest being careful with Rae, regardless if she's imprinted on you like you're her parent."

At that moment, Tenshi bursts out from inside dressed in her signature outfit, complete with peach-adorned hat.

"Oh yeaaaah! Back to being something that's not a menial laborer!"

Reimu accompanies her deadpan response with a slow clap. Upon looking down and seeing Reimu, Tenshi nearly squeaks in surprise, but catches herself at the last second.

"Ah, ye- yes! As you can see, Reimu, I found my sword! S- so, you'll keep your promise and I can go now, right?"

Reimu strokes her chin in an exaggerated gesture of thinking, holding the pose for several long seconds as she hmms to herself. Tenshi's grip on her sword tightens as you see her starting to grow exasperated.

"Hey! You better be just trying to push my buttons, stupid miko! Besides, now that I have my sword back, I don't have to listen to you anyway! Hah!"

Attaching the sword to her hip, Tenshi walks off the porch and over to you in a huff. Reimu's act finally stops as she grins. "It's fine, you useless Celestial. I'm better off without you cleaning up badly around this place. I kinda feel bad for pushing you off onto Alice though!"

Tenshi sticks her tongue out at Reimu and blows a wet raspberry at her. For her part, Reimu pries her eyes wide open with her fingers while making some goofy sneer back at Tenshi. The two continue making faces at each other while you watch for a good minute or two.

"Okay, okay, I think we should get going," you finally cut in and say as you clamp a hand on Tenshi's shoulder, guiding her around towards the archway out in front of the shrine. Reimu waves goodbye to you.

"See you later, Chuck! Say hello to Alice for me!"
"I will, and see you sooner Reimu!"

Reimu laughs at that as you and Tenshi walk out of view. Tenshi settles down by the time you reach the stone steps in front of the shrine.

"Thanks again for helping me, Charlie."
"No prob. Though in the end you didn't really need my help afterall, haha."
"You still helped! I mean, I'd have never thought to look in the altar, I only just glanced in there because we were right next to it."
"Funny how that worked out. Anyway, once we get to Alice's house, we'll get you set up in one of the other guest rooms. Or at least, I think there's more than one guest room. Be kinda awkward to share my room with you... I mean, uh, yeah..."

Good job! Enjoy leaving that statement to float between you in this period of silence! Man, if only there was a gap appearing suddenly to take your mind off... oh, there's one right now.

The two of you don't have the time to scream, let alone react, as the gap opens beneath and you drop like rocks into the darkness.


[ ] What the hell, Yukari
[ ] Good save, Yukari
[ ] I love you, Yukari
[X] Good save, Yukari!
[X] Good save, Yukari
[c] Good save, Yukari!
[c] I love you, Yukari, but where the hell are you taking us?
[X] Good save, Yukari
[X] Good save, Yukari

Even if she's just toying with Charles, it was good timing.
[x] Good save, Yukari
[X] Good save, Yukari!
Awkwardness defeated!
[X] Good save, Yukari
[x] Good save, Yukari
Alice is okay with us using her home like a hotel?
[x] I love you, Yukari

Comeon now, Yukarin is love.
[x] Good save, Yukari

[x] Good save, Yukari

> Alice is okay with us using her home like a hotel?

Ofcourse, don't worry~
[X] Good save, Yukari!
[X] Wait, where are we going?
"That was a good save, Yukari..." you mumble under your breath as you pick yourself up off the cold, hard floor. It's very dark wherever you are, but there's enough light emitting from torches along the wall that you can tell it's a square room with doors on three of the walls. Just then, a voice echoes out in response to yours.

"You may want to hold off on thanking me for anything, Charles Von Braun."

Even squinting as hard as you can, you cannot make out anything more than a vague silhouette some distance in front of you. You have a strong gut feeling that it's Yukari though, judging by the voice speaking to you.

"I did not expect you to fall into good terms with the Celestial, especially not at this early stage in the game. A small miscalculation on my part, but oh well..."

You furrow your brow at what she is saying, not sure why befriending Tenshi is a bad thing. "I don't really follow. What's wrong with me being friends with her? What game are you talking about?"

"The game is for me to know, and for you to play. As for the Celestial, well, it's simply because I don't like her. And by being friends with her, you've put yourself in quite a spot. Quite a spot indeed," While Yukari's words could be taken as serious business, the playful lilt of her voice betrays the fact that she still seems quite amused with the situation at hand.

Speaking of Tenshi, where is she? You look around the room again, and think you see her lying down on the floor off to your left. She doesn't seem to be moving, did she fall unconscious? Yukari's giggle catches your attention.

"So! Mr. Von Braun, you have already passed Level 1 of the game. Shall we begin Level 2? Your partner is different from the one I originally intended, but certainly this will add another level of fun to this!"

Whoa, wait, hold on! You still don't even grasp the situation you're in and what Yukari is talking about besides that you seem to be a participant in some game of hers.

"You find yourself in an underground labyrinth! The gamemaster informs you that you and your ally must find a way out of the labyrinth to win the level. However! You may be encountering all sorts of odd things and creatures here, so you may wish to be on guard! You also must be careful of the Nine-tailed Beast of the Labyrinth~!"

There is a clap of hands, as Yukari announces cheerfully, "Level 2, The Underground Labyrinth! Game start! Ta-tah!"

Before you have any time to speak, the silhouette evaporates into thin air. At about this time, you hear a groan from Tenshi. Walking over to her, you find her sitting up straight and rubbing her head.

"You alright, Tenshi?"
"I'm okay, I just hit my head after falling out of the gap... so it's the gap bitch, huh?"
"You mean Yukari? Yeah, pretty sure it is."

Tenshi takes your offered hand and gets to her feet. Brushing off her dress, she growls.

"Dammit, what is she doing now? I know she's got a beef with me."

You reiterate everything Yukari had said, and Tenshi crosses her arms in disdain.

"Oh wonderful, now we're pawns in another of her games. She's always trying to ruin my day! I swear, if she shows her hag face I'm going to shove my fist down her throat and you best not try to stop me."

The intensity of Tenshi's threat is quite a one-eighty from how she's acted up until now. However, that's not really important in your mind compared to finding a way out of this place.

Alright, there's three doors, one in each direction. They don't have any distinguishing features or marks. A search of the room reveals it to have nothing of use outside of the torches lining the walls.


[ ] Take the east door
[ ] Take the west door
[ ] Take the north door
One guess is as good as another, so...
[X] Take the north door

>Nine-tailed Beast of the Labyrinth
I doubt Ran is going along with this willingly.
[X] Take the north door

Front and center!
[x] Take the north door
-[x] Leave a noticeable mark on it.
Rae can scratch the door with her lance or something.
[x] Take the north door
-[x] Leave a noticeable mark on it.
[X] Take the East door.
(A good first try at a labyrinth is to always turn right, this will get you to the exit unless theres a loop..which there almost certainty is, but its still a good start.
[X] Leave a mark by the door.
Good idea.
[x] Take the north door
-[x] Leave a noticeable mark on it.

This will do
[x] Take the north door
-[x] Leave a noticeable mark on it.

Time for Ran F.O.E.~
[X] Take the west door

Can't possibly go wrong
[X] Take the East door.
(A good first try at a labyrinth is to always turn right, this will get you to the exit unless theres a loop..which there almost certainty is, but its still a good start.
[X] Leave a mark by the door.
What is this filler arc nonsense?
File 128479327871.jpg - (195.24KB, 800x800, df9e49f15f60bd32f3f8bac90a68f9e8.jpg) [iqdb]
[c] Take the north door
-[c] Leave a noticeable mark on it.
Still here in case anyone was wondering. Have been in a slump lately but I'll try to get back to writing sometime soon.
Still still hear?
[X] Take the East door.
[X] You're an engineer, right? It should be easy to remember a binary number for what turns you make.

0 for turning left, 1 for right. Make the number bigger as needed.
I'm really not sure what I'm doing with this story anymore. On the one hand I've been so preoccupied with others things and have little motivation to write, but on the other hand I really don't want to abandon this. Also, slow updates are slow...
Take as long as you need, motivation will come when the time is right. We'll wait for you.
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