image source: https://danbooru.donmai.us/posts/2177126
[X] Home/The Lake to touch base.
“First, to the Lake. I’ve been meaning to talk with a friend of mine.”
“The friend you kissed?” she questioned.
“Well... yes,” he acknowledged. “Actually on that subject, I should probably let you know that... How do I even put this?”
Suika cocked her head to the side, and he looked at the tip of her left horn as it neared his face.
“The immortal in the bamboo forest...” he began, carefully, “she claims she’s my cousin. After talking with Miss Kamishirasawa, she bid me to go help the girl out.”
“I did, but she was... too much a free spirit.”
“She kissed you?” Suika ventured and he thought about whether or not that would have been worse than what had actually transpired.
He couldn’t decide. “She would not wear clothes around me, and since she was half-paralyzed I had to carry her naked body around.”
“What the heck!? What the heck are you doing!?” the oni shouted. Not meeting her eye he told her:
“I tried to become accustomed to her nudity, but... that’s impossible, right? And the supposed ‘family’ ties between us are very, very thin. Not that I’d be comfortable around any of my other nearer-in-blood cousins while they were unclothed.” Now he met her eyes, asking, “What do you think, Suika?”
“I think you’ve gotta carry me around naked to make things fair,” she said, her brow lowered in some aggravation.
“It’d just end with that?” he spoke quizzically, lifting an eyebrow with the question. Suika’s face flushed a deep scarlet.
“P-Pervert!” she cried.
“I think I should know your body even more intimately than I already do,” he proposed, closing his eyes and speaking lightly. Looking into her face he asked, “How about it? You know, just to make this fair.”
Ibuki Suika’s blush now went from ear to ear. She pushed out of his arms and took to flying somewhat behind and beside him, childishly batting balled fists down on his head and shoulder. She whined while he smirked through the barrage, one eye closed. “Awww, stop!” she cried. “You're making me remember how crazy I got last night! Stop that!”
“This is about making things right. I am offering recompense with this feeble body of mine. I offer you my hands and fingers.” He kept on, noting: “Especially these fingers, Miss Suika. I have no qualms meeting your preferences.”
“Nnnnnnn, Geeen!!” she growled, and his face showed a jester’s joy. He gave a “whoa!” and dipped under the swinging out of her hand in its attempt to snatch his collar.
“Whatever’s the problem, my lady!? Is there an issue with how much I adore you?” he shouted, flying backward as she glared at him. His hands were in his pockets, and his posture was playful: pushing out his rear and bending his upper body toward her. “I would already kiss you from the hands above our head to the toes at your feet! I find every part of you too adorable to pass up!”
“Aaahh!! Aaaaahh!! Why are you yelling all this out in the damn sky!?” she screamed, and she dove at him for a hold—which he avoided, rather deftly.
“Shut my mouth, then! I think that’s the only way to stop me,” he sang, swaying back from her. He opened his arms wide and said, “Well?”
“Ohhh!? You wanna go, huh? You wanna go!? Then, let’s go, huh!” His lover was riled at once, and was already posed ready to tussle. He began reciting a spell, and in a moment he was fending her off through Gensokyo’s skies, their fighting going on all the way to Misty Lake, and catching more than a few eyes as it did so.
[ ♫: http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=YIGzIY4y8P0 ]
[ゆらら紙芝居 - 東方猫鍵盤3 (豚乙女)]
The Lake was clear at this hour, sunlight breaking across it in innumerable and brilliant fragments. The sky reflected was split and shattered as a raucous pair clashed over the surface. Small, yet sharp waves followed their feet as one chased the other; the aggressor breathing powerful fog and scattering bright magic, the prey speaking in a non-native tongue to gather his own. Contrary to the expressions they’d worn just beneath the clouds, the two now looked full of determination and zeal—the human between them was on the back foot, the oni between them was testing his limits. With a mid-sized tome in hand and shining, Itou Gen spun the waters of Misty Lake to his devices, making serpents and dragons which Suika would either catch in her hand or ride along in whirlwind and majestic routes.
He found that Suika’s danmaku was... certainly difficult to contend with, but it was not, perhaps… perhaps “refined” would be the best word for its missing aspect. His lover seemed to have interpreted the term “bullet curtain” quite literally, and oftentimes he felt that he was meant to try to dodge between the weaves of a carpet. As a contrast, his partner handled every one of his maneuvers and formations effortlessly, which was rather disarming. Not for the awe or despair of seeing someone easily surmount some of his best work (neither factored at all, in fact), but because Suika’s forms throughout dodging kept tugging at him to swoon. Her dance was too captivating in that dress, without sleeves, with those chains, and with that length of hair. Everything just moved so well and fantastic along with her, and he knew he would fall if only because he could not stop thinking of her as gorgeous.
Couldn’t use that as an excuse, though. He attempted to steel himself, and met the oni quite seriously to the end.
In a few minutes, the sands and pebbles of the shore were thrown in the blast of a tumbling body. At the end of this, rather dirty and with pant legs damp, Itou Gen lifted his upper body with his elbows’ leverage, wincing, but exhilarated. Suika’s fist had found his stomach through a bulwark of water and sunlight magics, and her tiny punch had hit him like a truck. He found that he was laughing as he stood on shaking legs. What a punch... he thought, holding his front and sporting a warbling smile. I thought I could keep away with that refraction, but she definitely figured out that I was baiting her...
Just barreled right through it. “Hell with your plan”.
Suika drifted down into the trail his body had left, dust and vapor swirling around her. She was grinning, and when she saw his crumpled shape, she roared with laughter. “Gahahaha!!” Tears were in her eyes, and she pointed at him. “Look at your face! And you thought you were being cool as hell, didn’t you!?”
He breathed in, held that quivering, and exhaled slowly, calmly. “I did think that,” he admitted. He took a survey of their present surroundings. “You were much cooler, though, Suika.” He looked her in the eye, saying, “I can’t stop looking at you. You’re beautiful.”
“Again with that...” with her hands on her hips, she spoke with a touch of irritation, but the wicked-seeming grin she wore seemed to him more pleased than piqued. She marched toward him as he got his bearings once more. “You said that’d shut you up, but you’re just full of it, huh?” she prodded.
“Yeah, my head is full of you,” said Gen, resting his palm between her horns when she’d neared him enough. He couldn’t see her expression, but she wasn’t removing his hand. He sighed. Too cute, he told himself for the fortieth time. The girl was too cute.
He stepped past Suika and moved toward a... less disturbed portion of the shore. He’d determined that this area wasn’t really a danger; perhaps Suika’s excited presence had driven away other youkai—like Yuuka had at Muenzuka the year before. He took from his suitcase the drilled stone “flute” Wakasagihime had given him. He reset its melody, played hers, and held its string to dip it into Misty Lake while Suika watched him enthralled.
Three tones quietly played.
In a minute, the water swelled, and out came a spitting mermaid with curled, teal hair. She wasn’t looking as she breached, thus she was very surprised by the pair she saw that summoned her. Her eyelashes bat, hands went up, and she zoomed away from the sands.
“Wh... What!? Gen—no way, you...!?”
Wakasagihime was terribly flustered.
“Good day, Princess. Um... what’s the matter?” he asked, as he put an arm across Suika’s head and horns to support himself, breathing out again. Suika seemed fascinated, not noticing the boy’s weight and examining all she could of Wakasagihime’s face from a distance. The mermaid was shivering and her shoulders were raised in fear and defense. Gen was confused.
“O-O... O-O-O-Oni! Th-That’s an oni, right!?” asked his friend. He furrowed his brow, and Suika bared all of her teeth in a grin.
While pointing at the fish-girl, his oni companion goaded her. “Ya scared?” she jabbed, next declaring, “Yeah, go ahead and be scared! I’m a real scary youkai!”
“What are you doing?” Gen grumbled, now propping his elbows on her horns and his cheeks on his hands. “Don’t scare her.”
“G... Gen!” shouted Wakasagihime, now perhaps twenty meters away. “Watch out! They like to be friendly, but oni are super dangerous! I don’t know if you’re friends with that one, but be careful!”
“Huhh...” he moaned. Below him, Suika seemed giddy. He addressed her, asking, “Have you met mermaids before, Suika?” She glanced up.
“Yeah, in Cyprus,” she said. “I watched the Lake along with everything else for a while this last month, but it didn’t really hit me. Even when they came to parties—Gensokyo’s got a bunch of new sorts, eh...? How’d they even get here? They swim?”
He considered that. “Hm, I haven’t asked.”
“Gen, are you alright!? Did you fight her!?” The mermaid seemed to have noticed the damage to the shore.
“Princess! Come over here! I insist: it’s fine! I’ll explain, just get closer!” Jeez, he thought, Wakasagihime never really struck me as—
He recalled the day he’d met the Princess. For one thing, she’d said she’d been frightened of his Master and Sakuya simply for assuming them to be youkai. For another, although she’d fought right alongside him against a true monster, that was a matter of life or death—and when presented with fight or flight, her first instinct had been the latter, the former only a tool to achieve it.
So if she knew of oni, who once ruled The Mountain... surely she would be afraid. At the same time, he felt like Wakasagihime’s family had to be many generations old... but perhaps not old enough to remember oni. If they had... Well, regardless, when had oni disappeared from Gensokyo? He couldn’t ask Suika that... She would, perhaps, be enraged by the question. A trick, to get her age? He didn’t care how old she was either, so...
“Ah, you came,” he noted, the water-girl having tread close now. He gave her half a smile. “That was easier than when I got you to say ‘hello’ to Lady Patchouli.”
“Yeah, I don’t know what I’m thinking,” said Wakasagihime, looking up at him with her eyebrows pushing together. Her lips were very much turned down. “When I said ‘hello’, she said ‘hm’, and pulled me out of the water. Why do I trust you?”
“We’re friends,” he told her, removing himself from his lover’s horns. He glanced at her as he stepped to her side, seeing that the oni wanted to push a finger into this friend’s cheek. “Wakasagihime,” he addressed the waterborne youkai, showing his palm toward the child of the earth, “this is Ibuki Suika. I’m courting her.”
“Wasn’t that not official?” teased Suika with her arms folded. Wakasagihime flinched again.
“I meant I haven’t taken you out for a dinner or anything, no romantic evenings or specific ‘date’-like activities... just a gyoza lunch...” he explained, a bit seriously. “We’ve done other things, but I want to treat you...”
Unbeknownst to him, Suika’s heart fluttered. She reached over to pinch his cheek, and tugged his face toward her, at which points she moved her lips to that cheek and began happily kissing it. Gen turned his eyes to his friend and told her, “Well, as you can see... this isn’t meant as a joke.”
Suika continued to kiss him, in spite of the awkward and bent posture this put him in. Wakasagihime, still in the water, seemed to be vibrating. Gen blinked, and then put on a boisterous face, aiming his thumb at his chest. “How’s that!?” he boasted, “Gen got himself a lover!”
“Gen... are you ever going to turn sane...?”
“Not when I’m... no, that’s too obvious,” he told her, refraining from mentioning what he was now “crazy” for. He put his finger to Suika’s forehead and pushed her away from his face, standing to his full height while she moaned in annoyance beside him. “So it’s like that,” he announced. “I wanted to let you know, because I’m very fond of you, Princess.”
“Well... I can’t say I’m happy for you...” she muttered, her eyes drifting toward his new partner. “It’s an oni, Gen.”
“You’re a fish,” said Suika, and Gen spat a laugh from between his lips. Wakasagihime eyeballed the tiny youkai-girl, her lips taut.
“Fish princess...” she mumbled, and at the comment Gen smiled.
“Yer a real princess? For real!?” Suika yelled.
“Wakasagi princess,” the ‘princess’ replied, smirking just a bit lightly.
“Are you from Hokkaido?”
“I’m from Gensokyo.”
“Then, why ‘wakasagi’?”
The mermaid shrugged. “Bad sense of humor?” she offered.
Suika bent down to stand on her toes, now engaged by his friend. He brushed some earth from his shirt, and whispered the rest away from his outfit while watching the two fondly.
”Hey, how long have mermaids been in the Lake?” asked Suika.
“Eight hundred years,” answered Wakasagihime.
“You’re joking,” Suika told her, wearing a smile now. Wakasagihime shook her head.
“No, it’s been eight hundred years.”
“Eight hundred years? Wakasa gi?”
“Oh right! No, no, we don’t live that long! We’re not related to ningyo, either!”
“That explains why you look Grecian... But why do you look Japanese?”
“Maybe it was... a romance between humans and us?” Wakasagihime proposed.
Suika chuckled. “Kahaha! What a fine idea!”
“It sounded like you were opposed to that, Princess,” Gen chimed in. The mermaid gave him a smug look.
“We’re friends with humans,” she said, as she always said. Suika’s laughing face immediately became a glaring one.
“Oi! We oni have the strongest bond with humans! Picking a fight? I’ll fish you out with my bare hands!” she growled.
“Some bond...” said Wakasagihime, trying to keep her posture still, her expression mocking, “you’ve been gone since before there was written history in Japan, you know?”
“At least we didn’t crash boats!”
“Hah...!? Are you stupid!? At least we didn’t kidnap people!”
Suika stared the fish-girl down, and Wakasagihime grit her teeth. Meanwhile Gen looked toward the distant mansion.
I should head inside... he thought to himself while the pair of girls fluctuated between banter and bullying, But I’m not sure if I should bring Miss Suika along. Master... Master really doesn’t like oni.
These two seem to be getting along, he observed, glancing back to see Suika pressing a finger into his friend’s face, his friend holding up her hands and shutting her eyes.
Well... what to do?
 Leave Suika with Wakasagihime.
 Bring Suika along to Scarlet Devil Mansion.