I feel... Different, somehow. I suppose this should be expected, seeing as how I now have a body. Instead of my usual, unmoving octagonal shape, I can feel long, fleshy extensions twitching slightly. I suppose those are my "limbs", then.
My immediate surroundings are soft and warm. Not nearly hot enough for my liking, of course, but pleasant all the same. I can also... "hear" something. Like slow breathing, very close to me. Whoever it is appears to be asleep.
Alright, first order of business is to open my eyes. Easier said than done but, after a lot of face-scrunching, I succeed. The first thing I see is the face of a sleeping girl, merely a few inches away from mine, her blond hair strewn about messily. I don't recognise it, of course, but I could never mistake the inner flow of her magic, even as slow as it is presently.
Immediately more comfortable, I start to slowly experiment moving my arms about without waking her, bringing my hand in front of my face and clenching it with childlike wonder. Satisfied with my motor functions, I slowly sit up, still not waking my mistress. Spotting a mirror on the other side of the room, I take a moment to take stock of my appearance.
I resemble mistress quite a bit, with a similar body frame and even similar facial features. I probably subconsciously copied those from her when I created this body. My hair, however, is shorter with a fiery red-orange color that matches my eyes.
At that moment, a sleepy voice rises from behind me.
"Huhh... Why are the covers off...? Wait, what?!"
I turn around just in time to see mistress reach under her pillow and pull me out from under it! Well, my real body, that is. Before I realize it, she has me pointed at... Well... Myself.
"Alright, I know I was drunk last night, but not enough to bring home some girl I don't even know! So who the hell are you, and what are you doing naked in my bed?"
I can't help but smile a little. She really has no idea, does she? I know better than anyone how powerful I am as a weapon, but if she wanted to threaten me, her fist would have been better. Unless she plans to clonk me upside my head.
Now, how to introduce myself...
Dare her to shoot me. I can easily dissipate whatever magic she pours into me.
Calmly explain that this is literally my birthday suit and that the only reason I'm in her bed is because she keeps me under her pillow.
Tackle-hug her. I can finally talk to her in person after all!
[X]Calmly explain that this is literally my birthday suit and that the only reason I'm in her bed is because she keeps me under her pillow. [X]Malice Because there will be hilarity and it would be poor form to call ourselves Mima. And with this oour names will match: The Witches Three; Mima, Marisa and Malice!
[x] Claim you're being tickled by Mistress. [x] Claim you're her most faithful companion. [x] Mention how you've solved many incidents by Mistress's side. [x] Claim that you have no name, as you were just born. [x] State that your owner, Mistress ought to give you a name. [x] Jokingly mention the fact that she whispers into your ears when she casts her laser. (maybe.) [?] Confess love for Mistress...? (don't have to write this if you don't want to.)
[x]Tackle-hug her. I can finally talk to her in person after all!
I'm torn on the name. On the one hand, Malice is a hilarious and strangely appropriate name to go with. On the other hand, I feel like a name related to "love" could be even more hilarious and appropriate.
So you know what, my vote for name goes to: [x] Aiko
Somewhere in the depths of my mind, a little voice tells me that I should just explain to her everything in a calm and clear manner so as to diminish the chances of a misunderstanding.
A much louder, more emotional voice rudely tells it to get stuffed. After all, mistress is right there in front of me! I finally have a mouth to talk to her with!
Wait, I have better!
I have arms!
My smile grows wider as I slowly raise my arms in preparation for the strike. Mistress fidgets about nervously, perhaps having second thoughts about unleashing her annihilation of love inside her own house.
Then, the moment she opens her mouth again, I pounce, instantly covering the short distance between us and trapping her in an inescapable bear hug. My momentum carries us both off the bed but I'm too excited to care.
"Ohmygods!" Words flow out of my mouth faster than I can think about them. "I'm SO HAPPY to finally be able to do this!" I affectionately nuzzle my head into her chest as she struggles against my death grip. "Mistress, you're so cruel! Claiming you don't know me when we've been through so much together! Forgetting me, your closest companion! The one who stood by your side through so many incidents, who took all your love and dealt it back to your enemies tenfold!" I raise my head a little, staring straight at her eyes. "I, who you have so often tenderly whispered to? Were those loving words lies, mistress?"
She stops struggling, looking at me with obvious confusion.
"I...Whu...What?" Her hand finds my hakkero again and, as she grabs it, I fail to hold back a giggle. "Mistress! That tickles!"
Realisation dawns in her eyes as she looks at the hakkero in her hand. "Wait... You mean... I thought that business was finished when the miracle mallet stopped!"
I light up at this and let her go so as to let her take a good look at me. "Yep. Nope. Sorta? I did lose consciousness for a while. But then I found something else to sustain me! And now I have a BODY!" I latch onto her again, burying my face into her neck.
"Hey! Lemme go! Breathing! And what have you found to sustain you, anyway? I'm pretty sure there is nothing like that around here."
I let go again, to mistress's obvious relief, and calm down a bit. I focus on myself for a bit, looking for the source of my power. "Well... I'm not sure exactly, but I think it's several sources. And they come from this direction." I say, pointing towards the door of the room.
Mistress gets up, sighing, and heads for the drawer in the corner of the room. "Alright, first things first, let's get you something to wear. This is awkward enough as is."
"So, you got a name or something?" She asks as she rummages through her clothing.
"Hmm...." I think for a moment. "Oh! I know! how about Aiko? Because I'm your love amplifier?"
She stops what she was doing and looks at me weirdly. "Ok, fair enough about the name, but could you not say things like 'my love amplifier' while naked at the foot of my bed? It makes me feel awkward."
I tilt my head questioningly. "How so?"
Mistress sighs. "Never mind, just put that on already." She says, throwing a dress at me.
A few minutes later, we are seated at the table, both dressed in matching black and white ensembles, though mine is slightly too big. And mistress didn't loan me a hat. Bummer!
"So let me get this all straight... You're my mini-hakkero, who has gained a mind of it's own."
"And the power that lets you do that comes from... There." She makes a large, sweeping hand motion towards the multitude of piles of miscellaneous junk/artifacts that litter the rest of the house.
I focus again, feeling the power coming from various piles. I'm pretty sure at least some of it comes from that sword on top of the farthest one. "Yep!"
"Alright." Mistress looks at my hakkero pensively. "I guess this isn't all bad, but I'm not sure if I should continue using this..."
"You can always use me in any way you like, mistress!" I reply, smiling broadly.
"Stop saying stuff like that. And while you're at it, just call me Marisa."
Stuff like what? And I can't just casually use her name! That would be horribly impolite.
"Anyway," She continues, "I guess I should introduce you to people, huh? Remember Reimu?"
Reimu... Of course. The Hakurei shrine maiden. A strange, seemingly unreachable mass of holy power that always seem to be present during incidents. And most days, really. While mistress is the person I spend the most time with, this Reimu comes in second. Which means that she is the person mistress spends the most time with! Besides me, of course.
"Yeah, I know who that is."
"Good. How about Alice? You might want to go see her about some clothes your size."
Alice... Alice... Anything not related to the incident that spawned me is foggy, but I seem to remember her... A central node of magic, linked to many smaller ones... Dolls? I have seen her quite often too, now that I think of it. I nod, too absorbed in recollection to answer properly.
"Alright, Kourin then? You really should remember him!"
Kourin? It does ring a bell... a small, weak but familiar pulse of magic. By all means it should be unremarkable, but something tells me that I should look deeper.
It's hard, the farther I go, the murkier my memories become, but I remember large, yet precise, hands. Carefully designing patterns and assembling parts...
I bolt up without really thinking, and mistress laughs a bit.
"I guess you do, huh? So, where to first?"
Go bother the Hakurei. It's practically routine by this point.
I kinda like the idea of my own wardrobe.
I should probably go tell dad that I exist, huh?
And about how to address mistress...
I should listen to her, even if it seems kind of impudent.
"Well, uh... I think I should talk to my father for a bit." I say, somewhat sheepishly.
Mistress smirks at that. "I guess I should have known you'd say that." Her face darkens a bit and she mutters something. I catch something like "Not that I can talk". I remember now that her own relationship with her father isn't exactly the best.
"I'm sorry if I've reminded you of bad memories, mistress."
She jumps a little and brightens up instantly, although I can tell she's faking it. "What? No! You didn't do anything wrong." She looks right at me. "But seriously, what happens between me and my old man is our business and no one else's. Not even yours. Got it?"
"Yes, mistress." I hurriedly reply.
"Hey, what did I say about calling me that?"
I can't help but cringe. I know it's her will, but to me, she is nothing less than my beloved mistress. I don't think I could call her anything else even if I wanted to. Not yet, at least.
It must have shown on my face, because mistress let out an annoyed sigh and says "Well, let's call it your assignment. I want you to be able to call me 'Hey, you!' by the end of the month."
Dread fills me and all I can do is gape at her powerlessly as she happily turns on her heel and heads for the door. "Well?" She says loudly over her shoulder, a wide grin on her face."Shall we get going? I wanna see how fast you are in the air!" She points an open palm towards her broom for emphasis. The broom responds immediately, eagerly jumping into her open hand. Mistress then sprint to the door, calling out "Last one there owes the other a meal! And don't forget to lock the door!"
That is NOT fair! Though to be honest, I shouldn't expect much fairness from my mistress. I love her more than anything else, but that doesn't mean I am blind to her faults. Still, this is a good chance to test out my new body! I quickly snatch my main body from the table and vault over it towards the door, almost catching up right there and then. Unfortunately, while my superior youkai muscles allowed me to reach the door in a single bound, my grasp of bipedal balance is not quite enough to ensure a smooth landing. As I lie on my bum, looking at the morning sky for the first time, I muse for a short moment about how beautiful it is.
Then I remember I have a race to run and a door to lock.
I hastily get up, close the door and apply a simple magical seal to it, one that mistress always use when leaving home. It's not going to keep experienced magicians or overpowered shrine maidens out, but it will do for the average feral youkai.
Satisfied of my security measures, I take a running start and jump with all my might, never to come back down.
Well, until I decide to come back down, at least.
I quickly spot mistress' magical signature and accelerate towards it. Of course, she's already out of sight, hidden by the many trees of the forest of magic.
As I leave the small clearing of our house, I can't help but notice how dense the vegetation is. Everywhere I look, it's nothing but trees, mushrooms and mushrooms growing on trees. Much of the sunlight is blocked by the thick canopy, preventing water from evaporating.
This place is just too damp to burn well.
"Yo!" Mistress' voice interrupts my musings. It appears I have caught up. "That was quite the spill back there. You're okay, right?"
I beam back at her."Not even a bruise! Your hakkero is tougher than that!"
She takes her eyes off from her current heading for a second and smirks at me. "Then you won't mind if I crank the difficulty up?"
Before I even finish, mistress blasts off at absolutely terrifying speeds, somehow retaining enough manoeuvrability to avoid crashing into trees. This is obviously a challenge, and I rise to it, accelerating to my maximum speed.
This is a terrible idea.
Trees zoom past me with horribly sharp wooshing sounds as I try my hardest to keep up, occasionally brushing against a trunk or bursting through thin branches. But no matter how hard I try, Mistress is simply too fast for me. Finally, I spot a break through the trees and breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that we have arrived.
In my relief, I stop considering my current trajectory for a moment, which bites me in the butt half a second later when I realise that I am headed straight for the final tree between me and my goal, with no way of fully preventing a collision. I quickly flip my body around in the hopes of using my legs to absorb some of the impact.
It's... Mostly successful.
I bounce off from the tree, legs screaming in pain, and land in a faceplant that makes my earlier fall look like a stubbed toe. After rolling around for a good distance in the most undignified manner possible, I finally skid to a halt right at mistress' feet, face up. As my vision stabilizes, I see that she looks concerned.
"Aiko, can you hear me? Are you alright?"
Okay, so... Face? Hurts like hell, but everything seems in place. Neck? Horribly sore yet functional. Legs? I don't think they're broken, but the muscles have taken a beating from the strain. Main body? Still safe in my pocket. All in all? Nothing permanent.
I break out in a painful smile and yell "I'm alright!" as convincingly as I'm able.
If Mistress saw through it, she didn't comment. She simply extended her hand, her trademark smirk back on her face. I take it, ignoring my legs the best I can. Don't want to worry her, after all.
"Wow, you're a tough one. Just look at the tree!" She says, pointing behind me.
I turn around and quickly see what she means. There are two vaguely foot-shaped indents in it at the point of impact.
So that's what that noise was... Better you than me, buddy.
"You know," Mistress pipes up cheerfully, " next time, you might want to consider just using your rear and break right through it."
I let out a nervous laugh at that. She's joking, right?
"I'm not sure my bum could take that..."
"You won't know until you try, right?" And with that, she turns around and head towards a building at the center of the clearing. I had almost forgotten what we came here to do.
Mistress, however, didn't. She opens the door without knocking and yells "Yo, Kourin! There is someone here who you really oughta meet!"
I hurry inside, closing the door after me. Looking around, I see a wide variety of... Stuff, I guess. Things from the outside world. I also see a tall woman with long blue hair standing near the counter, looking somewhat intrigued. Finally, behind the counter sits a white haired man, his golden eyes staring at me dispassionately from behind rectangular glasses.
Taking a deep breath, I think over the many ways to approach the issue at hand without coming off as awkward. Then I realize that it might take too long, and my father is waiting for an answer.
Eh, screw planning! Besides, mistress never seems to need it.
I smile widely, wave my hand at him and say "Hi, dad!"
I can hear mistress restraining herself from giggling. Father, on the other hand, just kind of widens his eyes for a second, then returns to his stoic stare. "I'm sorry miss, but I think you have the wrong store."
Mistress just bursts out laughing. Not cool, mistress. Not cool.
Now, how can I convince father that he is, indeed, my father when he probably hasn't done... Whatever it is that fleshy beings do to reproduce in at least a few decades?
Come to think of it, how do humans reproduce anyway?
A question for another time, I think. After all, I think I just figured out how to tell him. That is to say, I'll show him!
I confidently walk over to the counter and, confidently, take out my main body from my pocket and set it down in front of him.
His eyebrows rise slightly. "Marisa's mini-hakkero. I fail to see what-" He stops, squints his eyes and looks at me, alternating between my main and my human-like construct.
I wonder, does he see "Aiko" written over my main body or "Mini-hakkero" in my face? Or something else entirely? At any rate, while he is examining me, I might as well take a good look at him myself.
Not his face or other physical features, but his inner magical flow.
Being mainly a channel for magical energies, I am quite attuned to their flow, within or without other beings. In fact, I am much more used to seeing the world like this as opposed to my eyes. It can be quite useful for determining how a spell is made and replicate it. Most magicians would kill for such an ability.
I know mistress would.
At any rate, the man in front of me is peculiar indeed. There are traces of youki within him, yet nowhere near the amount of a full-blooded youkai. There is also a distinctly human feel to him, somehow.
Speaking of which, the blue-haired woman standing next to me also feels almost-human. I wonder what's up with that? She hasn't spoken yet, but she seems vaguely apprehensive. Why?
Father buries his face in his hand and lets out a tired sigh. "And this was such a fine day." He says. "Would you mind if we continued this over tea? I think I will need it." He turns toward the woman. "Sorry to cut our business short, Keine, but could you come back at a later date? I have... family matters to attend to, apparently."
Her face goes from shocked to betrayed and then to resolute in quick succession. "I am somewhat intrigued by this supposed daughter of yours. I would rather stay."
Father looks like he wants to object, but mistress's voice cuts him short.
"I think it would be better if you let her, Kourin." She says, coming out of the back room with father's best tea, freshly pilfered from his "secret" stash. I never even noticed she left.
Faced with the determined stare of Keine and mistress's beaming face, father has little choice but to relent. --------------------------------------------------------------------- "A tsukumogami?"
We have all seated ourselves around the store and started explaining the circumstances of my "birth", mostly for Keine's benefit.
"Yes." Father confirms while sipping his tea. "And seeing as how she was born of Marisa's hakkero..."
"That makes him my dad!"
"...Of a sort."
Keine breathes a small sigh. "Well, that's something of a relief. What are you going to do with her?"
"Well," mistress answers, "I was thinking of letting her stick around for a while."
As if she could get rid of me.
Keine frowns at this. "Really? Isn't it a little reckless to trust some youkai you've just met to that extent?"
I flare up. "And what you're implying is?"
"That it would not be the first time a tsukumogami kills her master in order to obtain true freedom."
Also total horseshit.
Apparently, mistress thinks so too, because she cuts me off before I can start yelling. "If she was gonna do anything like that, she would have done it this morning."
"I am not saying she is after your life now, just that you never know when that might change. You of all people should know that youkai don't think the way we do."
"All I'm hearing is you oppose my[\\i] decision. You want to take this outside?"
I get up. "I'm not gonna just take this lying down, either!"
Keine gets up as well. "If that is what it takes, I will gladly oblige both of you."
Excellent. I haven't burned anything yet this morning.
[i]This will be fun.
My true calling was always magical artillery, so I see no reason to change that now. Mistress will have to do without wielding me personally, however.
This will make a fine test run for the physical capabilities of my new body. I have always wanted to try physical augmentation magic. Plus, mistress gets to use me as she pleases!
Write a more detailed strategy if you wish. -------------------------------------------------------------------- So, uh... I'm back?
Many thanks to the people who poked me. It means a lot.
[x]This will make a fine test run for the physical capabilities of my new body. I have always wanted to try physical augmentation magic. Plus, mistress gets to use me as she pleases!
Interesting. I'd noticed this before but hadn't given it much thought since it looked dead.
As one writer to another, you might consider finding a steady editor to work with. I don't know exactly how new you are to writing, but your dialogue and tendency to overuse ellipses makes me think that you're relatively new. And I know that's rather saucy of me to say as someone who's just started reading. Believe me, your overall idea is fine thus far; it's just the execution that could do with a little tweaking here and there. Just a friendly suggestion.