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File 153687834442.png - (1.95MB, 1514x941, Setsubun.png) [iqdb]
66845 No. 66845
A theme fitting for the tale ♫: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tXMk-vk7ns
[Tada Rin Toshite - Starry Sky Logic (Kishida Kyoudan & The Akeboshi Rockets)]

Lyrics: http://www.faceorama.com/bluelight/kishidakyoudan/tadarintoshite.html

A story of magic.

Music Collection: https://mega.nz/#F!1BdBzIKZ!bhLzijfM3iyphpueDOKf0g

THREAD 1 >>65260
THREAD 2 >>65548
THREAD 3 >>65922
THREAD 4 >>66462
155posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>> No. 67102
File 154146910049.jpg - (215.23KB, 530x420, out like a light.jpg) [iqdb]
He awoke at some time in the morning to the feeling of being watched, but when he opened his eyes... nothing present told him that had been anything more than imagination.

He was atop one blanket and under another. He was shirtless, as was the girl he was holding. Drooling against his chest and hugging him right back was Ibuki Suika, entirely asleep and slightly hurting his ribs with the press of one of her horns. He felt almost as if sleep had made him feel worse, or rather that he was drained. A part of him, at least, had absolutely been worked tirelessly while the moon was still out. Suika had also enjoyed a lot of his attention in their two-sided affair, and he could testify: he has more than happy to give it.

Although he had not technically slept with his oni lover in the biblical sense this past night, this past night had been extremely perverse. Now in the morning after a few thoughts were going through his mind, though he would always return to the desire to squeeze the oni’s butt. He would bat the thought away and after considering the tasks to-do, the events of the yesterday, the small, cute buttocks of his lover—and, ah: there it was.

He had learned before they finally decided to rest that Ibuki Suika’s posterior truly was Grade S, and her reactions to a little honk of one of her cheeks were S+. Essentially, he had played Eve in the Garden of Eden last night, Suika the Snake, and her bottom... right. She hadn’t offered it however.

He looked up through the forest canopy to the slips of blue sky above. There weren’t many sounds of birds, so he imagined it wasn’t early morning.

He looked at Suika’s comically relaxed sleeping face.


[] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.

[] That’s dangerous!
>> No. 67104
>He awoke at some time in the morning to the feeling of being watched, but when he opened his eyes...

Anti scrying magic should be a priority if he wants to have privacy ever again.

[x] Dangerous!

Let sleeping Oni lie.
>> No. 67105
[x] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.

swiggity swooty i'm coming for that booty
>> No. 67106
[X] Dangerous!
>> No. 67107
[x] Dangerous! Let's totally DO that!
(counts as [x] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.)
>> No. 67120
[x] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.
>> No. 67121
[X] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.

Sometimes authors merely give the illusion of choice to conceal their own guilt in writing an option.
>> No. 67143
File 15419342748.gif - (3.96MB, 600x510, aaaaand squeeze.gif) [iqdb]

A pair of idiots in the morning.


[X] Squeeze Ibuki Suika’s butt.

[ ♫: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pc4zZ43R9o0 ]
[賢者の極北 (Nhato Remix) - Sedecim (ShibayanRecords)]

Gen reached down to where her butt should be, still watching her face, though now wearing a blank pout as he did so. His hand found the cloth of her bloomers, and he rested his palm above one of the two mounds he could feel there. He closed his eyes as he recalled the night before. It’s cute and round, was his evaluation, and he looked satisfied.

He then brought the lid up from his left eye so that he could see her reaction. Without warning, he gave the oni’s bottom a quick and handful squeeze.

“Hyah!?” she jolted awake with a shiver throughout her body, eyes opening in cracks. She looked to the left and right repeatedly, rapidly, her horns swishing with sound in the air.

“G’morning, Suika,” he greeted her cheerfully, now squeezing her absently and enjoying the repelling, tight, yet soft feeling. If he wasn’t so fond of life, he might have been tempted to throw in a pinch as well.

He could only accept a punch in the side.

“Gwf—!!” When she struck him from under their covers he spat out the contents of his lungs from behind closed lips and pulled his hand to the afflicted, aching area of his abdomen. Despite radiating with pain, despite knowing he’d likely feel this for a day or a few after, he had no regrets.

“D-Don’t grab that!!” shouted Suika (who was now on her knees and blushing) and when she saw that he was laughing through the hurt, she put him in a headlock against her chest. “Oi! Quitcher laughin’!” she warned. He laughed all the more as the damage from her jab became a bit more manageable. He brought his hand up to the left cage of her ribs and placed it there.

“Sorry, sorry!” he apologized without meaning, feeling elated that he was close to her.

“Tch! This human...!” she hissed, letting his neck go and taking his face in her hands. Through tear-bleared eyes, the grinning human saw that his lover was pouting at him angrily, still red-faced. Then, she brought him close. She kissed his forehead, spurring a light peal of laughter in him again. While embarrassedly avoided his eyes, she next told the boy, “Good morning, Gen...”

“Ahh! Suika! You’re too cute!” he exclaimed, pushing his face into her chest as he brought her into a caring hug, his eyes closed, his mood at peak.

“Ah, ahh! C’mon, you’re too clingy!” she said, pushing down on his hair, and from the little waver in her voice he knew she was holding back a tugging at the corner of her mouth. He squeezed her harder.

“Mmm~!” he moaned happily.

“Y-You’re like a puppy...” she grumbled, but after letting him hold her for a good while, she ultimately she chose to hug him back around his head and “Mmm!” as well. He pulled away from her once her embrace relaxed, sitting up himself now and delivering to her a most alive expression.

“Was I a good pillow?” he asked. Now prompted, Suika evaluated his body, the sensation tingling him as she pressed and gently pinched at his torso. After a bit, she nodded.

“Yeah!” she shouted, wearing a serious face complete with furrowed brow and now matching his gusto. Her staring increased as she looked over his faint abdominal muscles, putting the thumb of a closed hand before her lips, carrying her elbow in another. He returned her look with a curious one, one eyebrow twitching upward. “You could use more muscle,” she told him, and with that it was as if a pit opened beneath his heart. His posture sank.

“Ah... I see...” he muttered, his eyes now faraway.

“For your health,” she told him simply, her visage now at ease. She brought her nose near to his, her countenance turning to serenity as she closed her eyes. “You’ve gotta live long, my boy,” she told him, her voice lilting with the words. They kissed once, and after withdrawing snickered involuntarily at one another.

“Alright, enough of all this, we’ve got a day out ahead of us,” said Gen, taking his legs from their thin “bed” and standing up to stretch. He looked out at the view Suika had shown him the night before as he pulled at his arms, and felt exhilarated at the same sight bathed now in a new day’s sun.

“We should bathe,” said Suika from behind. “Let’s go to a stream. I know one the kappa aren’t messing with nowadays.”

Together...? he wondered, looking at Suika’s topless and pale body, eyes lingering too long on her exposed breasts. He blushed, turning his gaze to the woods. I don’t know about that...

If he went with her, there was a good chance of them repeating intimacy, of that he had no doubt. Especially if her saw her lower body exposed. His experience with that had been vivid, intoxicating. After his first taste of her, he was quite sure the only term appropriate for the way he felt about pleasuring Ibuki Suika was “desperate addiction”. Even without any fantasizing, his body’s response to the facts of memory now was rather apparently Pavlovian. Careful, he made sure to only show Suika his back.

“Go get what you need for that,” he told her from over his shoulder, “I’ll concoct some soaps and such.” He got down onto his knees and went to one of his thinking poses, knuckles pressed to his mouth. He didn’t have any materials. He started mumbling ideas to himself: what seals he could draw perhaps with blood instead of ink, the procedures for summoning, whether there were oils and the like in present environment he could use in ritual or craft. As he entered deep thought, Suika looked over at him, scratching her head. She didn’t have much of anything to get; to bathe, she tended to draw any impurities from her body with her power and use soaps and oils made by oni to refresh herself for good measure. She still had quite the supply, miniaturized, but since her gentleman seemed now set on survivalism, she decided she would only show him what she had once he was done. It would be interesting to see, she thought.

And to speak of what might be interesting to see...

The oni pounced onto his back, craning her neck beside his face and looking down. The act had her right horn strike against the back of his head, gaining his notice with a start and a yelp.

“You hid your boner?” she asked bluntly, grinning, teasing.

Gen, with a reflexive tear in his eye, looked at the oni in befuddlement and some reactive irritation.

“Is it gone now?” she asked, looking closely.

“... I’m somewhat trying to get it so, yes,” he explained, which was indeed the case. His mind was almost off her body until it came back with such proximity.

“Should I help you out?” she asked impishly, and he spotted her tongue out her lips.

No,” was his flat reply as he glowered at the mischievous youkai. He was particularly bothered since her offer had gotten his second mind’s full attention.

“Looks like I should...” she whispered with a severe tone, scrutinizing his crotch. He pushed at her forehead, shoving her slowly off of him.

“I’m not descending into debauchery with you—there are still plenty of things to do today,” he spoke sternly, straining against her.

“Aww, come on! Just once!” she whined.

“Once?” he repeated.

“Yeah! Stop right after that!” she “swore”.

“Like you would,” he growled. He slouched a bit further and added, “And you call me clingy.”

“‘Clingy’...” she echoed him, and her body dispersed, the smoke of her new form curling over his fingers. He watched as a hand formed where her forehead had been, interlocking with his fingers. Tugging his hand out a bit ahead of himself, Suika manifested in front of him drifting slow through the air, still only in her white underthings and her chains. Her face was near to the back of his hand, and she kissed it like some sort of Prince, drawing his heart nearer to hers in dedication despite how his brow seemed to be displaying trepidation. She floated down into his body, her skin sticking to his, and she hugged him dearly. Gen allowed this. Now, with a flushed face aimed at indistinct trees, his hands resting near the bottom he’d touched earlier, he continued to think on the current predicament of soap.


Heh, uh, ha hahm...


image sources:
>> No. 67154
File 154203309535.png - (23.92KB, 400x400, mysterious beams of light.png) [iqdb]
Yes, that image is actually NSFW//NOT SAFE FOR WORK, though as usual there's nothing explicit.

The update itself is mostly tame, though!


[ ♫: http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=Ly2vN9mbGUI ]
[神々が恋した幻想郷 - Festival (NEUTRAL)]

Plant oils, a summon circle written in a bit of his blood on the earth (Suika having pricked his finger for him), fire, and some temporal magics a little beyond the ordinary scope of his ability: this is what it took him to create, and carry, a substance for cleaning one’s body. At the end he had made a clay plate, atop of which was a small and solid bar of white soap.

He huffed with satisfaction.

At his side, Suika (still only in bloomers and metal bangles) whistled that she was impressed. She smirked, nodded, and spoke to him while meeting his eyes, “G’job,” she praised, and he felt a little giddy. She continued, “so do you wanna use yours or mine?”

He processed what this question meant quickly, jolting at the knowledge. “You have soap!?” he asked.

“Yeah, lots,” she said, opening her hand to him upon which sat a pile of off-white beads from the look of it. A closer look proved each was rectangular... and he surmised that these were bars of soap, made small with her power. “I’ve also got stuff for cleaning your teeth,” she informed him.

He looked down at what he had produced, grimacing. He had a feeling that his less than an hour’s work was probably not as good at getting the job done than whatever made Ibuki Suika smell so good.

He put his hand over his face, bending his neck back. That was such a waste of tiiiiime... he thought in anguish. He was a little miserable now.

“Now you know how to do it!” the oni was supportive. “Come on! Let’s go wash up!”

Indeed. To bathe together. He stood up next to her and looked down to the oni with a rather dour face. His feelings on the subject were very halfly mixed.

After turning to follow her on her way to the supposed stream, he picked up his shirt and threw on the sleeves and shoulders at least to have some semblance of decency and lack of vulnerability so near to Youkai Mountain (his feet were utterly exposed, but he found he didn’t actually mind that). He remained close to her while his thoughts drifted away. He could imagine washing together with Suika, having her tempt him to take his hands to her body, and then many things after that. Frankly: he was anticipating such an outcome most eagerly. At the same time, he felt like opening that Pandora’s Box would result in the death of several hours, the only hope being whether the oni spared him at least for the night.

He smiled to himself.

It wasn’t exactly a terrible problem to have: someone who was just as hungry and adoring as he was, just more open and demanding about it. It just wasn’t conducive to a plan for the day. Maybe... some other time. Spending an entire day in Suika’s arms...

He exhaled sharply through his nose. He could imagine that scenario very easily, and that jostled his reason. He hoped she wasn’t paying him any particular attention. It was his luck that she wasn’t, or she may have seized the opportunity to seduce him without hesitation.

Eventually they did make it to the stream she’d mentioned: a very clean, sparkling thing with a somewhat weak waterfall which seemed to hardly be two heads over his own. The water had quite a few rounded pebbles in it and a handful of large boulders. The shore was glistening and largely untouched... he wondered if it was the shallowness of the water here that had made the kappa write the area off.

While he looked over the idyllic scene, nearing significant depths of thought, Suika got out of her bloomers and tossed them into the air, letting them fall a foot or two away from him, to his left. It, and her new freedom, did not escape his notice. He blushed behind a hand and turned his head from her—but still maintained his gaze. Then, she turned to him and stood with confidence in her posture. This was despite her also looking rather embarrassed, the smile on her lips quite warped in shape. It was almost to his surprise at this point, but apparently without a mood going even this oni could be ashamed.

It was otherwise just as he’d predicted, however. His heart was beating loudly enough that he imagined she could likely see it pounding below his chest. He closed his eyes, and hoped she wouldn’t ask anything of him.

“U-Uuhhh... I-I’ll go first,” she said after a moment. It may have been a relief to him were his blood not already rushing hotly in excitement.

“Alright,” he said, his mouth still hidden behind his hand. He intended to turn away, but in spite of himself watched her enter the water instead.

It seemed they’d quietly come to the understanding that this was perhaps not the best location for indecency. What was getting them like this? Was it just the excitement from their both being so new to one another? After all it was to the point that they’d have likely agreed on this truth: had one of them even extended an awkward invitation or request, the other would not have hesitated to accept or grant their wishes.

Looking at Suika float soap over her hand, her butt out toward him as she quite obviously tried to avoid consciously acknowledging his curiosity, he felt that was not the case. It wasn’t novelty; he genuinely, wholly, found Suika attractive. It wasn’t only how physically compelling she was, either. Her mannerisms and attitude felt like they were always pulling him in even now, be it for conversation, cozying, or a licentious act beginning with the syllable “cunn”.

As here—

While lathering her sides and arms, she met his eyes by accident, and hers, though nervous, became unwavering. She wore a small frown and put one hand underneath her arm. She then leaned her back against one of the small river’s boulders, arching her stomach forward as she began to near the lower part of it with her left hand. She did not seem to want to stop her hand there, however.

Knowing what she had in mind, his eyes went wide, he pivoted on his heel, and he took quick steps to stand with his back against a tree, no longer facing her. His palm was over his face again.

A girl like that is anathema to any idea of dedicated research, plans, or projects, he thought, I’m feeling for her too much.

He attempted to calm himself down for the next several minutes, but to no avail. How do I even still have stamina...!? he wondered to himself, recalling how quickly sessions tended to put him out of commission on other days. He sighed, and waited.

In enough time, he heard, “Done, Gen,” and turned to where she was.

Suika was seated on a boulder on the shore, apparently drying in the Sun, sitting rather unladylike and still very much doused in water of course. He walked past her, taking off his shirt and stopping his hands at his belt frowning.

“... You sure you don’t want help with that?” she asked, and a secret glance told him he was right in imagining where she was looking.

“... I’m sure,” he said, still not pulling down his trousers, “besides, you just bathed.”

“I could aim you at the water or something,” she suggested, her cheek now on the heel of her palm.

“N-No,” he insisted, though the twitching of his lips betrayed his thankfulness to the offer. If he couldn’t demonstrate self-restraint with her, he feared his life was going to become very difficult.

... Still, he really did want to turn to her and undress in front of her eyes, knowing exactly what she would do if he did.

Gen pulled down his trousers and pants as he moved, and hopped on one foot toward the water while still removing them. He let them fall on the shore and splashed down to sit on the river’s bed, turning toward Suika and scooting back until he was under the waterfall. It was entirely cold, though mostly refreshingly so given the summer’s usual temperature. It wouldn’t eliminate his arousal with guarantee, but it would probably help.

“You forgot your soap, Gen. Gross~.”

Having closed his eyes as if he was meditating, Gen now opened them and near fell off his bottom from the presence of Suika before him. He flailed a little to regain his balance, and put a hand over his chest. Suika was standing up and holding two bars, as well as bending toward him and looking at the things in her hands. “Mine or yours?” she asked.

“... Mine,” he said, his arm up as if he was defending against an imminent pouncing. He brought it down so that she could put the soap in his palm. Instead, she tossed her bar to the shore, wet her hands, and began making suds with his. He brought the arm up again. “Wh-What are you doing!?” he demanded to know.

“Relax, I’m finished teasing, finished,” she told him honestly, looking not at his face but his body. “I didn’t get to crawl all over you like you did with me last night, so just think of it as ‘fair is fair’! Besides, I punched you earlier so I’ve gotta see the damage.”

Gen remained silent and she brought her hands to him. He put on a worried face, but offered no denials as she scrubbed him with her hands. She didn’t seem to have any alternative motives, and his manhood finally decided to stand down. Now, he almost felt bad knowing if he tried to do the same to her, he would undoubtedly be unable to control himself before pushing his face between her legs.

... That thought called his young Sir to attention once more.

“Settle down, cowboy, that’s not what I’m here for,” the oni chastised with a smile, pushing down on him with a bubble-filled hand. When she was done with his stomach she said, “Stand up.”

He did, folding his now-cleaned arms and trying not to be embarrassed as she floated up to his back. He took her hand from behind to get some of his soap for himself in order to finish up his lower body. She meanwhile loosened up his neck, took care with his (still sore) injury, and eventually returned to his front side to lather his cheeks in her hands, chuckling blissfully while she enjoyed his face.

... Maybe it was too early to believe this, maybe it was inexperience and immaturity’s cause, but he thought then to tell her, “I love you”, the words shining out of his heart and flowing to the tip of his tongue. Instead, when he was done being cleaned by her, he put his hand behind her head and brought the happy oni into another kiss. Then another. He pulled away from her, and offered a smile of thanks.

They brushed their teeth together afterward, pretending to not be worried over the taste of their mouths in the morning, though believing, at least, that the other was perfectly fine. After they gargled and spat mouthwash side by side, Gen thought on what he planned to do first. Suika had told him earlier in the morning that she had her own business to get to, so he’d mostly be going this day alone. With that in consideration he...

[] decided since Aomu was close by, he would go to see her about the volcano.

[] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase.

[] thought he should head back to the Lake,
---- [] to see Wakasagihime.
---- [] and return to the Mansion.
>> No. 67155
[X] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase.

Reporting back to the mansion sounds good too, but kind of a waste with so little to report
>> No. 67161
[X] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase.

All seem good.
>> No. 67162
[x] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase.
>> No. 67171
[X] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase.

>> No. 67203
File 154239185656.jpg - (558.46KB, 1400x823, It's Keine!.jpg) [iqdb]
image sources:


[X] believed the first order of business would be going back to the village to get that suitcase. The pair, soon finished with their ablutions, thus returned to where they’d slept and dressed as fully as each was capable. They parted for their separate business after a peck between lips, and Gen watched as Suika took to the sky from their campsite

Panic set in upon his turning, however, and his expression shifted.

The young apprentice realized that without any of his things, performing magic could be difficult. His books, too, were in his Master’s suitcase, and so his ready-made circles as well. Complex magic was now out of the question, and powerful magic would be less refined. Casting from his own spirit was much more viable than it had been even half a year before (and it was growing viable then, really), but it was foolish to control one’s own life essence when the elements abounded.

He pivoted about and watched his woman’s receding figure, rather torn within. Pride wanted him to keep mum about this, smugly set off, and take care of everything along the way in search of moments for which he could later unhumbly boast.

Every other word and experience told him what a magician should do.

And so, his pride bowed out.

“Suika!” he yelled, and she stopped immediately. She changed direction, pointed her foot to the ground before him, and fell like a meteor back down to the earth. Through the resultant whirlwind of dust, he stood normally and addressed the now-crouching oni. “Please keep with me to the village entrance at least,” he asked. “I can still perform magic, but without my things I’m just a duck that’s come bearing green onions.”

“You do look delicious,” she said with a smirk. He frowned.

“Cut it out.”

“I’ll admit to ya I like the sound of protecting my man, I do, but not as much as my man protecting himself,” she explained, and she took her first swig of alcohol for the day. “Nm... ng... Hahh... Is it ‘cause you’re scared, Gen? ‘Cause, on principal, I’m gonna have to turn down a weak heart. Tell me the truth.”

“The truth is I didn’t want to call to you,” he was honest, slouching a bit. “It’s more exciting: the prospect of testing my limits with only my spirit, the environment, and ingenuity. I’m fairly sure I could do it,” he spoke without any hesitation, raising his hand as though there were power inside it. This pleased the oni.

“Oohh!” she moaned, her excitement clear.

“But on the chance that I could die,” he said, “it isn’t worth my bragging rights.”

“Hmmm...” she considered this while kissing the mouth of her gourd. She did not consider long, shortly pulling the tool back, standing up, and telling him, “‘Lright, I’ll scare off any weaklings looking for an easy kill off a’ ya while yer down.” This pleased the human, whose cheeks rose with his ensuing smile.

He put his hands together in obeisance, bowing his head and saying, “Yes! Please make me feel safe again, Miss Suika!”

“‘Again’...? And when was the first time?” she asked while looking haughty, her arms crossed as she leaned away in her posture.

He opened his eyes a bit wide and his entire body paused. He hadn’t told her that. Eventually his motor functionality returned and he stood up straight. He turned to make his way out, stared off sideways to nowhere, and answered: “I-I wonder...?”

“I make my human feel safe! How often do you feel like it’s dangerous!? Huh!? Hey, Gen!”

She pursued at his back, floating behind him and poking his one cheek, tugging both, fiddling with his ears playfully. Even though he’d gotten to know her so intimately already (at least physically), it seemed she could still have him ashamed. As he walked past the Lake she clung to his shoulders—rubbing at his face, and kissing it plenty.

And though he was silent and tight-lipped the entire way it was mainly out of practicality. Hugging her back, squeezing her close, adoring her at all would only leave his back open.

And ever since the morning, the feeling of eyes on him had not passed.


[ ♫: http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=lGQHhx_-v6s ]
[秋姉妹のなく頃に - 秋満開の風に舞う (ばんばんしー)]

“See ya later,” she said as they neared the gate. She turned to his front, and they finally shared a strong embrace, her human holding her up and enjoying that such it was clear he had little intention to let her go. Nonetheless, they wordlessly agreed on a time to detach. When they did, Suika lifted into the air behind him, then lifted her fist toward him. He presented his as well.

At once they declared, “First is rock! Paper, scissors, go!” And promptly drew with scissors.

“Beh~! Another tie!” she stuck out her tongue and put the pair of her fingers next to her face, such that her winking eye was between the two of them. He mirrored her, (sans tongue), and when he did she dove her arms around his shoulders to hold him again. With his hands on her back, he laughed and spun her in a circle, pivoting on his heel with his other leg in the air. Her chains flowed wonderfully with their turning.

He stopped with a foot down, and looked up at her as she looked down at him, matching his content and pushing off of his chest. She then suddenly hugged him around his head powerfully, though for just a few seconds before releasing him. This left her arm beside his face and her hand atop his head. She touched her nose to his and told him in secrecy, “I keep wanting to kiss you...”, looking girlishly delighted as she admitted it.

Wh-Whoa, my heart...! He thought, wincing. She did not kiss him, finally pushing off her partner and throwing one instead (with a wink and one shoulder up) as she took off. He caught it on its way, swiping her affection from the air.

“Really, see you later!” Suika called, waving enthusiastically. He had to face it. He was definitely already in love with her.

“Phew...” he sighed, turning back to the village gates. Hopefully it was lunch time around now... He didn’t want to interrupt any of Miss Kamishirasawa’s classes. He made his way to the entrance, bid the guardsman good day, and was soon in the village, now vaguely aware that whoever was watching him was doing so from the sky, given nothing had followed through the gate.

Nobody will attack me at or around the Human Village... he wagered, stepping ahead without any regard for his pursuer, ... It’s a tengu, I think. Aya?

She’d tracked him not long ago when curious over his ties with Suika, after all. If she was still following him... she must have confirmed it. Perhaps she was afraid of Suika and so hadn’t yet made contact with him directly. Miss Kamishirasawa had said that Suika’s presence as an oni was worrying the residents of the Mountain, which would mean tengu. As Gen continued to walk, he theorized, and told himself to prepare for the worst whenever it was he next left the village.

Soon enough he was before the now bright and unintimidating temple school where Miss Kamishirasawa worked. He knocked on the door to no answer. Opening it, he saw no shoes in the entranceway either. Depositing his, he stepped up into and walked through the naturally lit hallway to rap his knuckles on the door of the classroom.

He heard a strange but human sound muffled behind it, and then, “Yes? What is it?“

“Miss Kamishirasawa, it’s the fool from last night,” he said, sliding the door out of his way. “Gen,” he clarified. “Good morning.”

“It’s the afternoon,” said Keine, who looked obviously different now. Her horns were no longer present and her scheme of colors had shifted to blue (white hair streaked with a periwinkle hue, and a navy dress of the same design otherwise, furthermore there was...). His eyes fell on her... her... “hat”(?).

There was... a kind of lunch box on her head, apparently, complete with a standing red ribbon tied to its top. It was an extravagant, two-staged box as well. He... wasn’t sure what to say about it.

She turned her eyes (hazel, he was a little surprised to see) from the more conventional lunch box on her desk to him, ignoring where his gaze was directed. “Your suitcase is here,” she said, reaching under her desk and pulling it onto the top with a clack. “Take it. It’s dangerous to have around children.”

“I deeply apologize,” he responded in as polite Japanese as he could manage, bowing sincerely and contorting his brow and lips in guilt.

“Don’t. I disoriented you two,” said Keine, getting back to her meal. She gave him a pointed look as he approached, however. She swallowed and told him, “If you feel like you’ve got to apologize for something, apologize for doing what you did. In a school building, no less! As if you have no common sense or decency.”

“I am very sorry,” he said quickly, still bowing.

“I understood why you did it,” she revealed, which did not surprise him given the knowledge she possessed under the full moon, “but I wish you had waited until the work you offered was done. Don’t let that oni bully you around.”

I kind of like her bullying... he admitted to himself, a slight smile on his lips. Keine saw it as he straightened his back, and she glowered. He reached for the hand of the suitcase, trying to ignore her judging.

“I won’t say that you shouldn’t lay with a youkai,” the teacher said without any concern to her tone, making him spit air, “but I will say that history shows your road will have a sorrowful destination if you do not... adapt, alright?”

He grabbed the suitcase, pulling it toward him. “Thanks for the advice,” he told her, and meant that. “My final apology is for interrupting your lunch. Thank you for taking care of my forgotten things. You’re a very good person, Miss Kamishirasawa.”

“I am,” said the half-youkai without pride or shame, still taking up her rice, chicken, and vegetables. He nodded once, clipped the case to his belt, and turned away to leave. Thinking this was all, he was surprised that she interrupted him with a “Wait.”

He gave her his attention

“A favor returned for a favor...” she began, “... completes last night. This has been another favor.” With that said, she looked into his eyes. “Will you compensate me?”

“You want me to do something?”

“Over time I’ve learned that you’re used to doing errands,” said the woman simply. He frowned, as he was always prompt to do at the soonest hint of dissatisfaction.

“For my Master,” he clarified.

“Do me a favor,” she came right out with her wish, and the magician’s apprentice took a pose of consideration (one hand on his hip, and the other beneath his chin).

He wasn’t sure about doing anything unplanned this day, not with a tengu after him, and his Master had already beat into him the value of preparing before any sort of task you could seek to endeavor. So... how to answer?

[] Refuse, unless the task is to hold on to one of her things overnight.

[] “Is it urgent?” (seek to postpone)

[] “... Alright; what favor?”
>> No. 67204
[x] “... Alright; what favor?”
>> No. 67205
[X] “... Alright; what favor?”

His caution is well deserved but... His brave spirit is what enthralled so many souls around him
>> No. 67206
[X] “... Alright; what favor?”
>> No. 67207
[X] “... Alright; what favor?”
>> No. 67208
[x] “... Alright; what favor?”

We kinda do owe her for not running us out of the village.
>> No. 67214
[x] “... Alright; what favor?”
>> No. 67231

[X] “... Alright; what favor?”

We really do her. Not only were we getting physical in the school house, remember that our meeting with Suika warranted being written down. As such, most likely our evening activities warranted the same, so odds are Keine was writing about it as it was occurring. So we really do owe her.
>> No. 67233
[X] “... Alright; what favor?”

Favors for favors. As a stranger in a strange land, we shoukd help out and gain allies.
>> No. 67290
File 154311960530.png - (253.70KB, 530x718, youkai.png) [iqdb]
Unanimously maintaining Gen’s “good boy” status, eh?


[X] “... Alright; what favor?”

“Go check up on Mokou. See if she’s alright.”

Gen straightened his back a little upon hearing this request. He raised one finger quizzically, cocked an eyebrow, and asked, “... That’s it?”

Keine snorted with humor. “‘That’s it’, he says... The same man who, on his night return from the Bamboo Forest, confided in his fellow residents of Scarlet Devil Mansion that he was still, if not more, afraid of the place?”

He folded his arms, looking like he had eaten something sour. “... Fair,” he soon confessed. “So you’re too busy to check on her yourself? The kids will return after lunch time?”

“So they will. I’m worried about that girl,” said Keine. Gen didn’t really understand the concern.

“Mokou is immortal,” he told her, “what has you worried?”

“She’s not invulnerable. She doesn’t care for her own well-being and suffers because of it. And yesterday—!” The teacher stopped with her fist on her desk, meeting her passionate eyes with the boy’s puzzled ones. She breathed out and settled down, looking again to her near-finished meal. In a voice that told him she was forcing calm, Miss Kamishirasawa told him, “I should warn you.”

He cocked his head a bit to the side. He was listening.

“Without revealing the whole truth, for knowing it will assuredly put your life at risk, Mokou got into a particularly dangerous fight with somebody last night. It seems that she lost, and I need you to see if she’s recovered fine and is eating properly. Don’t let her starve. Also, please make sure she’s bathed, and that she’s slept on her bed too. Check that her house is tidy, and make sure she has clothes to wear. Do her laundry if she hasn’t, and make sure she’s washed her plates, cups, and utensils. Check her roof and walls for any holes... What else?”

Jeez, Gen thought to himself, a mild grimace on his face, Mokou, sis... you’re probably gonna be happy it’s me who checks up on you today, hm?

He cleared his throat, fist before his mouth. “Yes,” he told her reassuringly, “I am fairly used to looking after immortals.”

The half-youkai blinked, and then considered his words with the nail of her thumb to her lips. “Ah, yes, the Mansion’s Magician,” she finally said. “Right... well, Mokou’s immortality is a bit different.” A bitter smile came across her face as she said this. Gen didn’t know what to think of that: the only kinds of immortality he knew of were from the abandonment of worms, certain hermit arts, becoming a Celestial, or becoming otherwise divine—such as achieving godhood. As Miss Kamishirasawa was not being forthright about the specifics of Mokou’s brand, he decided not to prod—especially not Keine. He already knew of its uniqueness through keeping the ancient Fujiwara noble “human”, but... It would probably be best if he presented such a question to said noble directly. That was, assuming she would even deign to answer it.

“I’ll keep that in mind,” he said politely. He then asked, “If you don’t mind, can you give me some sort of directions to her house?”

“No,” the teacher denied, shaking her head and making a peace sign, “for two reasons. First is that even if I could tell you them, I wouldn’t for fear of the words falling on the wrong ears—I can never be sure, and it isn’t an exaggeration to say that the ones with which Mokou bears a grudge have far wider reach for listening than I’d like. Second, I don’t ‘know’ where her home is.”

Ah, he thought, closing his mouth on a word of objection, right, the forest’s layout changes.

“How do you find it yourself, then?” he asked her. Keine answered promptly:

“That part of the forest remembers me, and parts of it seem clear to me when I look for Mokou’s house nowadays,” she explained. “It isn’t something I can teach, unfortunately. Like the bamboo harvesters and Mokou herself, the forest becomes more welcoming to you over time. For the white rabbit who has lived there since ancient times, the two know each other from the furthest stalk to the next, and from head to toe. For myself, I feel some comfort and ease when I enter the Forest of the Lost for Mokou.”

“Aha, I see, that’s it,” he said several confirmations, nodding as well and crossing his arms. “So you’re sending me to my perhaps-death, then, to see to a person who can’t die.”

“Don’t be dramatic,” said Keine, having none of his sass. She shooed him with her hand. “Get going,” she told him, “I don’t think I have much more time for chatting.”

“Yes, once more: sorry.”

“Don’t worry,” she insisted. “See you later, Sir Gen, in hopefully better context.”

“I hope so too. Bye, then!”

He was off.


[ ♫: http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=cpj6ZOX7ylo ]
[韋駄天パトリオッ - IsuCaの嘴 (さかばと)]

He checked his things.

He paged his books.

He stood before the Bamboo Forest of The Lost, feeling more equipped to deal with whatever it might have in store than his last time there.

Gen breathed out, his eyes to the ground, before stepping forward and into a crow tengu standing in his way.

“Wh-Whoa! Say when you’re gonna move, okay!?” said the youkai, hopping back on one foot.

Gen was utterly flustered, swatting a bit at his face and shaking his head, slouched. “Huh!? Wha!?” he managed to say with heat in his breath. Will this become a trend!?

What was that I hit anyway—breasts!? Is this youkai going to blackmail me for walking into her breasts!?

Indeed he had felt something rather soft over his nose and eyes before hearing the words of a female voice. Looking at her now, he saw that if he had ran into her chest... it was not a wonder he wasn’t sure. The tengu before him was no Wakasagihime or Onozuka Komachi, to put that fact bluntly.

This girl had wings thinner than those (from Shameimaru Aya) he was familiar with, and they were presently outstretched in her surprise. A gust turned about the two of them, telling him she had shown up before him only a second ago. He frowned on her face, a youthful-looking but rather embarrassed expression churning upon it. This girl looked younger than Aya... as if she were in her teenage years to relate her to a human. Her ears were pointed, her hair was dark and almost purple in color it seemed, and her eyes matched that. Her tokin was a shade of purple as well, and the same went for ribbon-ties in her hair that separated it into flowing, soft-looking twin tails of a decent, not overlong length. Her shirt was a bit professional looking for Gensokyo (meaning she had a black and rectangular tie as well as a frilled collar—violet again). The puff and short-sleeved thing was a faded pink in color, and her skirt (again, short) was made up of a large checkered pattern interchanging black and dark magenta—though those boxes were scuffed, almost, with speckled shadow. She wore the distinctive one-tooth geta of tengu, as well as a pair of near knee-high black socks. Like Aya she had modified the shoes, though in her case it was only to the straps, which were... once again... violet. The straps crossed the top of her feet twice before wrapping up her calves a few times as well.

“Like what you see!?” the girl asked excitedly. Gen was disgusted.

She reached for a small, leather, black-button pouch on her waist. “Wait, wait—!” she spoke, still full of unmasked energy. “I shou... A picture! I’ll get a picture!” She unclasped the pouch and extracted, to his genuine bewilderment, a flip phone. She aimed the checkered yellow thing at him, a brush for writing dangling off of it like a charm. A crimson heart sticker drew his attention to a lens, which she was directing at him. “H-Hold still!” she asked.

A camera phone...? he pondered as she stared at her phone’s screen, her rapture slowly being overtaken by confusion and devastation. Those are pretty new... I wouldn’t have figured one would have fallen into Gensokyo already.

“Wh-Why won’t it wooorrrk...?” she moaned, holding the item with both hands. He hadn’t actually touched such a phone before, but he knew his way around a computer at least...

The human approached the tengu, reaching for her phone. “Let me see,” he said. “... Eh? This is kappa tech,” he observed once it was in his hand.

The girl stared at it as he navigated the menu, which had a cucumber logo in its bottom-right at all times with a kanji right upon it, signifying the mark of a kappa invention, as well as a letter from the name of whichever kappa had created it. He buttoned over to a lens symbol, confirmed, and a view from the reverse side came to the screen. “Whoa, awesome!” he said without thinking.

“Right!? Right!? Those turtles are amazing!”

He took a picture of the road beneath them, eliciting the sound of a shutter. “The quality’s really good too...” he admired. “This is pretty much new stuff in the Outside World. I’m really impressed.”

“D-Did you take one!? A picture!?” the crow at his side asked him, bending beside him, her wings still far out. He turned the lens to her, and pressed confirm. “Augh!”

He caught her face with her eyes completely closed, her hair up as she was jostled in surprised, her mouth open and in an amorphous shape. He smirked, and navigated to the gallery to show her.

Her eyes glittered.


Aw, he thought.

So, he showed her the basics of its use. “Here, you navigate with the arrows—you figured that much I guess. If you press this button in the center, that confirms. It’s also what you press when you want to take a picture. This right here... is the cancel, or back button, which takes you to previous menus, denies actions, and so on.”

“Awesome, human! I knew you were special!” she shouted.

He handed her back her phone. “I’m not really special for this,” he said. “That’s why you wanted my picture?”

She blushed awkwardly, smiling halfway but still possessing a look of determination in her eye. “I... I just wanted to try it out,” she admitted. Then she hopped back from him, folded her arms, stood on one foot, and smirked (still flushed in her face). “Hmph!” she breathed through her nose. “Listen here, human! I’ve decided to document you!”

“I decline,” he said.

“Hwah!? Y-You can’t decline!” she yelled, almost falling from her balance.

“Then I’ll just beat you into submission,” he said, flexing his hand. “That’s how it works in Gensokyo, no?”

“I-I’m against violence!” she cried, holding a hand up. This is sounding familiar, the boy thought, his lips turning up ever so slightly.

“Honestly, though, you haven’t even introduced yourself. Who the hell are you?” he asked bluntly. “I’m not keen on associating with tengu.”

“Please. I’m a professional! I won’t scare you like that thug Aya... don’t tell her I said that!” she was quick to cover, though she still stood with confidence. “My name, human, is Himekaido Hatate! Ha-ta-te, in hiragana! I want to become the best reporter! Gensokyo’s resident consummate reporter! That means really, really good, human!”

“I know what consummate means.”

“Good! I knew you were special!”

“Are you trying make me angry?”

“Fufu... no, no I’m not. Please don’t try to fight me, I’ll just run away. In a flash,” she spoke with her eyes closed.

“... Okay, what; you want to document me right? You run something like the Bunbunmaru?” he asked.

“Not yet, not at all!” she proudly declared. “I’m still learning!”


“Please, please... Please let me accompany you on your journey today! I want to see what you’re up to!”

“You’re a tengu.. the way you lot do things is listening in, following, and all that without mentioning jack. Unless you’re Aya, then you just talk to people ‘honestly’ and lie about them later,” said Gen plainly. He followed with, “I’m not seeing why you’d want to follow me, and even with the coward act, I know tengu are some of the most powerful beings in Gensokyo. Generally speaking, I want to steer clear of those, especially with the reputation for aggression tengu have. Why would I willingly leave my back open to one?”

“...” Himekaido Hatate had listened to him with her eyes closed all the while, that smirk always on her face. She now looked at him and said, “Wow, uh, you’re totally right huh?”

“You won’t even argue?” he folded his arms now, scowling.

“Sorry, I really don’t know what to do and I don’t talk to people a lot, ha ha. It’s a joke: my life.”

“I know a kappa you should meet. You two would get along.”

“Ha ha, I dunno... ahem,” she coughed into her hand, “Um, I hope it’s not too much trouble, but I’d like to document your escapades if that’s alright with you?”

“Just backing up, huh.”

“I, uh, swear I won’t do anything bad to you!” when she said this, he opened his mouth to point out— “That ‘uh’ was just ‘cause I’m still learning, please don’t worry about it!”

Gen blinked, still with his arms crossed. Trusting a kappa he’d just met was one thing, but a tengu...?

For what it was worth, Tengu weren’t known for trickery. Though they had some reputation for being deceptive, it was from foxes and tanuki that that behavior was more likely to be expected. Say he believed her...

He was still curious as to why she’d want to document him, and he’d already rebuffed Aya days before because he did not want much of a reputation yet. Then again, it could be that this Hatate only wanted to be upfront about her intentions and articles, unlike Aya who seemed to want to record his life largely in secret, until she would publish details on it at some later date.

... Hm.

Could he perhaps use this tengu to interfere with the plans of another?

He looked at her, and decided

[] to accept her request.

[] to refuse her request.

[] to dominate her by trouncing her with magic first and foremost.


image sources:
>> No. 67291
[x] to accept her request.

might as well be a nice boy
>> No. 67293
[x] to accept her request.

Let's get rid of pent-up frustrations.
>> No. 67294
[x] to accept her request.

Gen has finally found someone who's a bigger nerd than he is
>> No. 67295
[x] to accept her request.

>> No. 67296
[x] to accept her request.

There are some characters who can only be liked if they are BULLI'd.
>> No. 67298
[x] to accept her request.
>> No. 67304
[X] to refuse her request, for today

Mokou-nee appreciates her privacy
>> No. 67305
[x] to accept her request.

Sure, why not?
>> No. 67307
[x] to accept her request.
-[x] WITH (not-so) SEVERE BULLY
Gen's a good boy, he's not gonna be THAT mean.
>> No. 67309
[x] to refuse her request.

Keine's request feels very personal, and it's important to respect Mokou's personal space. Bringing Hatate into that feels very intrusive.
>> No. 67310
[x] to refuse her request.

I agree with the other anon. With the way Keine told us her request, and how intensely fearful she was of Eientei(?) getting any info on Mokou, unfortunately I don't think we can let Hatate come with us.

That doesn't mean we could ask Hatate later I imagine.

I would hope we could politely decline her offer here, but maybe let her come with us on other escapades?
>> No. 67311
[x] to refuse her request.
>> No. 67312
[x] to refuse her request.
>> No. 67314
[x] to refuse her request.
>> No. 67323
[x] to refuse her request.

Mokou > Hatate
>> No. 67340
[x] to refuse her request.
>> No. 67341
File 154352548161.jpg - (288.81KB, 600x600, 1485722554266.jpg) [iqdb]
Though I'm probably not gonna start writing for a while-ish, I'm going to call it. For what? Well. The tie.

It's a tie between refusal and acceptance--polar opposites. What I'm gonna do is just respect what seems to be the general wishes of muh readers and have Gen accept WITH CONDITIONS (and bulli). Indeed, although Mokou is a known figure, AFAIK her home is not a known place.

Well, we'll get around to it. Pretty amazed this tied the way it did
>> No. 67342
It is a pretty good story, yeah.
>> No. 67358
File 154375892257.jpg - (235.43KB, 1182x1511, HATATAA.jpg) [iqdb]
Small minor "who even cares" retcon: I had Gen wearing gloves the night before this. He doesn't have gloves presently at all, actually, so that couldn't have happened. It's just one of the details I set up and misremembered/read incorrectly. Whoops!


[x] to accept her request.

[x] Wait, no, to refuse.

[X] ... Well...

[ ♫: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVXKfsX4YOk ]
[妖怪モダンコロニー - MAPLEAVES (xi-on)]

He smiled innocently.

“When you say you wish to document me, how much do you mean?” he asked the girl.

“Oh! Pretty much from now on! And—And, if I know anything about you from before we met, then too!” she explained, balling her fists and bending a bit toward him from where she stood, her face obvious with excitement.

He showed his hand. “Then, would you mind if we put it in writing?”

“Oh, like, of course!” she answered, putting one hand on her hip and making a tent of her other hand over her chest. She smirked. “I’m a professional, after all!”

“That you are,” he answered, opening his suitcase. He pulled out a large scroll and a bottle of ink. Opening up and calling for the bottles contents, he began to draw on the paper.

“That, uh... looks like a magic circle,” Hatate commented with some nervous laughter.

“That may be because it is,” he said, not looking up. He paused after speaking, however, to lift his head and explain, “I’m a magician, Miss Himekaido. Magical contracts are a part of our repertoire.”

“Hatate...” the Tengu corrected absently, studying his writing still from afar. “... Do magical contracts use circles too?”

“Many do,” he told her. It wasn’t false.

However, this was naturally not a contract.

Contracts established by Magicians were only used in summoning. Magic beyond the bounds of the rules of spellwork would be needed to perform other sorts of deals, covenants, pacts and the like that held supernatural ramifications for being broken, or gains for being brokered. Such works of the Art were the works of demons and specific youkai, but not any sort of Magician. Even Nikulásson, the one who bound a Christian demon to The Red Skin book and thus established a tome of readily available, superbly powerful magic, only himself contracted and enslaved Paimon; the greater benefits of the book could only be attributed to Paimon’s power.

But these were not things one would simply know, and judging the youkai before him to be quite ignorant of the world outside of tengu society, Gen was rather certain this trivial fact of Magicians’ limitations was not within her head.

He penned a circle of harmful magic, though he set down no materials in order to not be too obvious with his intent. It was the first spell of his morning and already later in the day—he could afford to cast from spirit.

“Now I will activate it with an incantation,” he said, the glyph now complete and intricate before him. Its swirls, spots, and letters would inform the action of a spell of sunlight. There was no need for him to hold back his magic with a tengu of all beings. “Please stay just there so that the magic recognizes you as one of the participants when we come to signing.”

“Uh... A—Alright...” she muttered, and he almost stopped speaking his spell. Himekaido Hatate was, in spite of her apprehension, also obvious in her eagerly awaiting what magic he would perform. He almost asked if this would be her first witnessing of the Art, or at least the first performance she would see a human execute. What stopped him was knowing that an answer of “yes” would sway him to reconsider this move.

I’ll make things clear with this... and vent a bit about tengu through her here, he told himself.

With a final whisper in a dead language, the light of the sun that bathed the area grew over-vibrant, painfully so. Only for a fraction of a moment, however. After, it looked to solidify, and faster than it had become intense his magic became a semi-large dome of luminous white orbs over their heads, each orb a soccer-ball’s measure in width. Gen closed his bottle, and stood. Hatate’s eyebrow perked up, and she kept her mouth held open in a small, ovoid shape.

The tengu didn’t seem to fully comprehend that she had been caged, so while she looked everywhere around herself at the gapless half-sphere of his creation, Gen prepared another spell, withdrawing from his case a concoction of simple magical fuel, which he opened calmly while speaking to “fire”.

The air surrounding his right hand then set off in combustion, and a rolling blaze turned around it, looking as if it could barely be kept within his control. The human next put this inferno before him, moving his hand a foot front in front of his chest and looking at a very still, very wide-eyed bird between the flames.

“I feel like giving you a warning... Hatate,” he said to the youkai, who listened without budging, “that warning is to not be naive: don’t ever show your weakness to a human, because once they know it they will exploit it.

“Youkai may often be more powerful than humans, and some may also be far more intelligent, but this place is a reserve for a reason. We humans are resourceful. My resource is magic, and I should let you know: I am very proficient with it.”

Hatate’s head was bowed, and she now gripped the shirt before her stomach. Her eyes had gotten to be no less wide. She seemed to realize what her mistake had been in thinking any tengu could lord over any human. In spite of his tendency for sympathy, Gen’s tendency toward the thrill gained from being simply overpowering won out in his heart then, and he fought to suppress a smile. Right now, if the tengu before him attempted escape she would be met with heavy, obfuscating resistance. If she tried to attack him a light would fast seek to blind her. If she moved too quickly for that, his flames would take her wings.

A shudder of satisfaction waved through him as the involuntary smile made its way through to his lips in one of its haughtiest manifestations. Gen finished his words by saying, “I’ll torch you into nothing if you try anything, Hatate. If you don’t want to be put in this predicament again, and value your flesh to not have it skewered through and cooked, then consider my warning well going forward.”

Himekaido Hatate was not used to the outside world.

Slowly, still looking at the dirt beneath her, she made to stand on two of her geta instead of one, then lowered her knees to the dirt. She put her hands onto the road as well, the fingers pointed toward each other, and she lowered her head until her bangs brushed bits of earth away, her twin tails functioning as loose-bristle brooms. Itou Gen stood then before a tengu performing dogeza to him, and the sphere of arrogance inside of his heart split.

“I-I am very sorry, Sir Ge—eh-Itou, I meant you no harm at all, or... or any insult,” Hatate told him, her wings folding into her back. “I am aware that you are... are not from Gensokyo, and so do not have to follow its... i-its new rules, so please don’t exterminate me, as in death.”

He looked on, the fire over his hand curling lightly. Her back shook.

“A-And don’t make me... spill your blood with my hands either... if it comes to that.” She swallowed, and exhaled.

Gen bent to his scroll while she continued to talk, opening his suitcase again.

“In... the current political climate,” she explained, “it would reflect very poorly on my society if I harmed you, even if you are an outsider.”

He wrote a spiral on to sheet and “tied” it to the primary magical circle, taking from his suitcase a heavy, round stone. He closed the case, and put the stone upon the spiral.

“I deeply apologize. I sincerely apologize. Please reconsider your... your... your...... threats...”

He finished his alteration of the spell with a few runes etched around the stone, stood, spoke only a few words, and thus the luminous curtain above them transformed at once into a light, pleasant rain which fell for only a few seconds. He released the fire about his arm too.

... Now a bit damp, the tengu in front of him had curled into herself, and was presently quivering, quite terrified. “It was just rain,” he told her. “I turned the light into rain.”

“W-What...?” she muttered, her voice thoroughly broken. She threw her head up. “What!? You... You...! Did you... trick me!?”

“If you’re going to follow me,” said Gen, checking the contents of his suitcase for moisture (none!), “I want you to know that I’m not slave to your whims. I’m more than capable of taking down a tengu if they’re as unused to encounters as you... however—” he put a hand to his hip and looked from her eyes “... I didn’t expect such an earnest reaction, and I apologize if I scared you. Murder... even grievous harm is not something I want to partake in.”

Hatate was sat on her knees, her eyebrows clashing against one another, her mouth contorted with frustration. “I knew I shouldn’ta left...” she sniffed, and he looked to see a shimmer in her eyes, “I knew I shoulda just stayed in my room...”

Gen was put in a slight panic, watching a young (-looking, at least) girl struggle against tears he had caused. There was something joyful about putting a youkai beneath his foot with magic ordinarily, but there wasn’t any satisfaction without a sense of a fight or defiance as here. There was no glee to be derived from making another person genuinely fear death or consequence, especially not for simply, rather politely, making a request. All he’d done was bully someone... youkai or not... and that made him now rather darkly muddled.

“Y-Your room?” he asked eventually, lifting his hands a bit in front of himself, to grasp at nothing. “A shut-in? Y-You’re a shut-in!?”

“I left, didn’t I...!? I’m... just as good!” she insisted, water now at the edge of her eyelids.

He hesitated, conflicted as to whether he should approach the girl or not. To do so would be to mark down another moment worthy of his Master calling him a fool again. Demonstrating sympathy to a powerful monster... was not a good idea. Again, a kappa was one thing, but...

“Don’t you know how crazy things get here!? The insane abilities and powers and threats on the Mountain, off the Mountain—this whole places sucks! I figured out how to live without worrying about... about ANY of it, okay!?” she shouted. Her voice then quieted as she followed her outburst with, “That’s right... I figured it out... Why did I think I should come see you...?”

Gen looked on miserably while Hatate became miserable, gazing bitterly at the backs of her hands.

After a moment, the Magician’s Apprentice began to sneak sideways until he was parallel with the left of the girl’s body. Though warning alarms blared in his head that he should get away, the inside of his chest whined stronger than that with guilt. Arguably dauntless, he slowly approached her trembling form very carefully while she spoke to herself under her breath over and over. He gradually understood her saying, “... go home... wanna go home... wanna go home...” to herself in a mantra that seemed familiar.

... The Wizard of Oz? he speculated accurately. Did she...?

Come across the film?

Watch it, and believe it?

Believe in the power of wishes... and thus wish so dearly for home now in this moment of anguish, anger, and ashamedness, red shoes or no?

Sadly, yes to all.

He held his breath, set his resolve, and put both his hands on top of Himekaido Hatate’s head, avoiding her tokin.

[ ♫: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6yZBAgkVLY ]
[Atatakana Kokoro - Rozen Maiden Original Soundtrack (Mitsumune Shinkichi)]

“...” He stayed, keeping a wide stance. The crow stopped shaking.

“D... Do you have a death wish?” asked Hatate, turning to try to look at him. He pushed down on her hair. “H-Hey!”

“Have you calmed down?” he asked warily.


He rubbed her head a bit, frowning. “Then, I’ll say I’m sorry again,” he announced. “I’m not doing this for any other reason than I’d rather... not be mean, I suppose. I don’t want someone feeling awful because of my words or actions... usually. For the most part.”

He bent down and put his right hand over her shoulders, his left hand on her left arm. He moved to pick her up. “Don’t worry,” he said, “you’ll be fine. Worst that can happen to a tengu nowadays is a nonlethal bullet. Well, a lot of them, and some torn up clothes, but that’s all. Come on, stand up, stop sniffling.”

She eventually managed to stand to his height (as afforded by the teeth of her shoes), and he saw that her nose and the skin beneath her eyes had become rosy in complexion. He still kept presence of mind to attempt escape if need be... but prioritized being gentle with this evidently fragile girl, easing her of her anxiety.

“... So this is why,” Hatate muttered.

“Hm? What’s what?” he asked, but apparently the words had been meant to be quieter than she’d managed.

Her response was a slight-stammered, “N-Nothing,” before she told him, “I guess I should just go now...”

“Nah, come on: be a reporter, right? When are you going to publish what write about me anyway? If you were thinking ‘soon’ I was going to... not be kind at all about that suggestion.”

“A compilation... eventually... I’d let you know... Um, sorry, let me go now please.”

He did, stepping back as well and leaving his hands aloft. Hatate coughed into her hand.

“Sorry,” she said again. “I’ve... I’ve been inside a long time. I guess I got... overconfident.”

“How old are you?” he asked her, heedless of the problems such a question delivered to Japanese women.

“I’m... not old for a tengu,” she said. Hatate breathed in slowly, then long out, and slapped twice at her face lightly. “Okay... Okay...! Yeah! Yeah, I’ll report on you! Document you!” she said, looking at him with much of her zeal returned, uncaring of how unflattering her bout of tears had made her face.

“Alright, super,” he said, giving her a thumb’s up. He started walking backward toward the forest and said, “but wait there first, because I can’t let you follow me here.”

“H-Hey! Wait—what!?” she snapped, pointing at him and becoming entirely flustered. “You just told me to be a reporter!”

He turned his back to her now, hoping she’d understand it as a sign of trust. “Be a good one,” he said, waving a hand once in a goodbye as he moved into the thicket, “listen to the wishes of your subject. Honestly, it’s not my place to let a youkai follow me to the person I’m going to see today.” He looked back at her with a small smile on his lips. “Tell you what,” he said, “I’ll ask her if she’s cool with you being there some other time. If she says yes, that’ll be an exclusive.” He looked back into the forest.


He didn’t. “Talk to you later, Hatate. Here—” he took from his suitcase a small piece of parchment with spellwork inscribed very similar to that which had been used on his letter to his parents,“—write on this and draw a small circle if you want me to read it.”

Gen enchanted the paper with direction, and let it go so it would fly to Hatate’s hand. The tengu took it, eyeing it in total confusion. With that, he parted from her, relieved that that hadn’t gone near as poorly as it could’ve.


In the search for Mokou’s house

[] Wander aimlessly.

[] Attempt to figure out paths from evidence of animals.

[] Attempt to logically, carefully explore the Bamboo Forest of the Lost.
>> No. 67360
[x] Wander aimlessly.
>> No. 67361
[x] Wander aimlessly.

Common sense has no place in Gensokyo~
>> No. 67362
[x] Wander aimlessly.
>> No. 67363
[x] Wander aimlessly.

it's what I would do
>> No. 67364
[x] Attempt to logically, carefully explore the Bamboo Forest of the Lost.

Let's piss off the forest!
>> No. 67365
[x] Attempt to logically, carefully explore the Bamboo Forest of the Lost.
>> No. 67366
[x] Wander aimlessly.
>> No. 67367
[X] Wander aimlessly.

The forest can't make you lose your way if you yourself don't know where you're going. Take that!
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