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File 140269154898.jpg - (159.79KB, 850x638, Gift of the Magi Update 1.jpg) [iqdb]
60556 No. 60556
This is most certainly going to be rather unpleasant. Judging from the flurry of activity around the mansion today, it seems that Remilia is cooking up some new problematic event. The beginnings of a migraine begins to form in the back of your head as you consider what she might be planning, and worse, what part she’s called you out the library to play in it. Whatever it is, you can be sure you’d prefer to keep your hands clean of it.

“Patchy! Glad you could join us!” Remilia comes up behind you with a pat on the back, causing you to tense up reflexively.

“I wasn’t aware I had any option otherwise.”

“Oh don’t be like that. I’m just looking out for my friend, trying to get her to enjoy life a bit more.”

“You and I have very different ways of deriving enjoyment.”

“Oh, but variety is the spice of life, is it not?”

“So you’re saying you want to come read in the library?”

“Maybe something other time, tonight we have a party to attend.”

“You have a party to attend, I have books to read.”

“You can read those books another day.”

“And you’ll be hosting parties other days too.”

“It’s surprising you know that, since you never come.”

“You never let me forget, and I’ll not let you forget that I am a scholar first and a socialite never.”
You respond, and then letting your irritation get the better of you, add “Mine is the higher path.”

Remilia turns her head away from you, not letting you see her expression at your outburst, then walking away, her reply clear despite facing away from you.

“What is a book but a miserable pile of words. People are far more interesting than anything in your dumb library, not that you’d know.”

You’re not in the mood for more of this either, decide to return to the library.

Back in the quiet comfort of Voile, you find yourself more brooding than reading the book in your hands, a treatise on youkai social structures.

You’ve heard it many times before, that you shouldn’t stay in the library, that you should be around people more. Obviously, they don’t understand. That may be their happiness, and they might be satisfied with that, but yours is in your hands right now. Your books are all you need.

Thinking that, you are about to dive back into the treatise with renewed zeal when you are pulled back to reality with a start.

“Lady Patchouli.”

Sakuya’s voice comes from behind you, immediately followed by the magic sentries announcing her entrance into the library. That power of hers always makes you uncomfortable, and few things irritate you more than being interrupted while reading. The maid seems to delight in exploiting both facts.

“Yes, Miss Izayoi?”

“Mistress Remilia wanted me to inform you of some additional appetizing details of her party.”

You let out an exasperated sigh. Not this again.

“One of the guests will be a dealer of exotic and outside-world books.”

It’s likely a bluff. A book dealer wouldn’t run in the same circles as Remilia. She’s just trying to trick you into coming, for whatever scheme she has in the works. You would be interested in meeting a book dealer, but you can’t let her see that.

“Is that so? I doubt that they’ll have any books that I don’t already.”

“Mistress guessed that you would say that. Her response is that you have no way of knowing that until you ask.”

Ugh. Always a show off, isn’t she.

“Mistress also wanted me to inform you that there would be certain guests in attendance, certain scholars who you might want to meet.”

“That’s a cryptic piece of bait. I think she’s underestimating me if she thinks I’ll bite though.”

“Then its on to the next plan. If you come, milady swears that you’ll not hear a thing again about coming to her parties for a year. On the other hand, if you don’t...well she has a lot of interesting amusements she could host in the library itself from now on.”

And now we’re moving on to threats, letting her vampiric tendencies shine through. It’s probably pretty benign, but it does bring up a good point. Staying on Remilia’s good side will make your life much more comfortable.

“Tell Remilia that there’s nothing cute about making threats, but because she’s an old friend I’ll consider doing it for her. Go tell her that now.”

With that, Sakuya vanishes and you are left to your silence again. You start to get back into your book, but its a little dry and you weren’t terribly interested in it in the first place. With a small sigh, you close it and put it down, noticing with a start that Koakuma had been silently staring at you.


The small voice of your familiar slips out.

“Um…..Lady Patchouli?”

“I’m listening.”

You’ve learned to be calm and methodical in dealing with your familiar. It can be a bit irritating at times, but it’s better than if, for instance, she acted like a certain vampire.

“Uh, let’s see… I just had a little question, I mean a request. Something to ask of you.”

Another sigh escapes your lips involuntarily.

“Out with it, what do you want?”

At your prompting the words spill out of her in a jumbled and grammatically atrocious mess.

“Lady Remilia. She’s hosting a party tonight, you know? Did you know that? She is. And she invited me. Sakuya told me. But I’m your familiar, so I wanted to ask. No, I needed to ask you. If it’s okay, that is, if I can go. Can I?”

She stares at you plaintively, either in an attempt to persuade you or in an apologetic response to her previous outburst, while an acidic feeling starts to form in your stomach and the tightness of a new migraine begins in your head. Of course it’s this damn party again. The scowl on your face is apparently very obvious, as your familiar immediately cringes and begins to back peddle on her previous request, tripping over her words yet again.

“Um, it’s okay. Actually. I don’t mind. I mean, I don’t actually want to. I just had to ask. Because she invited me. But it’s fine if not. Not that it can’t be fine. You are the boss, so if you say fine, then it’s fine. Right? Sorry?”
You hold up your palm to stop her before her verbal spillage can continue. Taking a breath, and letting out another sigh, you collect your thoughts and calm yourself. There’s no point in taking out your frustrations on your familiar. You remember reading in Your Familiar and You the importance of maintaining a friendly and personal connection to higher order familiars in maintaining work efficiency for long term contractings. And this familiar, conversational skills aside, does her tasks well enough that you’d prefer to keep her for a while, rather than have her get unruly and have to find a replacement. According to the book, it is the small favors like this that make for a truly loyal, and therefore more productive familiar. By that logic it seems more prudent to just let her go. It’d only be for one night, but for some reason that you can’t quite seem to pin down, you dislike the idea.

[ ] Go to Remilia’s Party, and allow Koakuma to go as well.
[ ] Write-in for if you have strong feelings about what Patchouli should wear.
[ ] Make only a token appearance to satisfy Remilia.
[ ] In for a penny, in for a pound. Shove Remilia’s teasing in her face, be the life of the party.

[ ] Nope, staying in for the night.
[ ] Write-in for if you have strong feelings about what Patchouli should read about this evening.
[ ] But you’ll let your familiar attend.
[ ] You need her to stay in as well.

Rules Overview: Write-ins are great. I put a lot of value in the creativity of the community, so sometimes I’ll leave a space open for them. Other times I won’t explicitly do that, but Write-ins are always ok. That being said, I reserve the right to veto a write-in if it feels out of character, but hope to not have to utilize it.
199posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>> No. 60893
I can't believe I missed 3 updates. Like, maaaaaaaaaan.
[X] Go with Remilia, for now.
Considering a 1/7 of her arsenal is gone, 3 people look more intimidating then 1 sickly magi.
I admit, I am interested in seeing some prolonged interactions between the two. This seems to be a very Mutual Use sort of 'frriendship', or a shadow of what it may have been in the distant past.
>Inquire as to who sent the letter.
Because knowing who went for the Nuclear(Well, at least until Utsuho appears) option would solve some curiosity. Plus we'll know who thinks sicing the trigger happy, but reasonable, shrine maiden on us, and what for.
>> No. 60903
File 140844120831.jpg - (367.24KB, 620x877, A Long Night; A Fun Night.jpg) [iqdb]
[X] Go with Remilia.

“Alright, I shall accompany you tonight”, you say with a sigh.

She flashes you a curved grin, the kind that gives you a full view of her fangs. “I'm so glad you've made room in your busy schedule for me.”

“Anything for an old friend, as you would say.”

“I'm so touched that you know me so well. Very well, let's not waste a second more. Sakuya?”

The maid appears suddenly at Remilia's side.

“My preparations are complete, I'm sorry for the delay.”

“No, it's no problem at all. I should like to thank you for the delay, as it gave me time to talk with Patchouli. She will be joining us”, She says with a grin.

“As you wish, Milady.”

“Good. Our destination is the bamboo forest of the lost. Until we reach there, Sakuya, you're in charge of screening out the weak foes. Let's go.”

The three of you set off at a brisk pace. The sun has set and Sakuya, as per the plan, eagerly goes about subjugating any fairy that gets in your way, leaving you and Remilia nothing to do currently except continue on. You take the time to think about what kind of research you will do when you get back. Remilia, apparently, doesn't find your silence stimulating enough as she interrupts your thoughts.

“It's a nice night out tonight, don't you think? Aside from that gaudy fake moon in the sky, of course.”

“I don't really know.”

“Yes, I suppose you'd need a reference book to make a comparison, wouldn't you?” she replies, her smirk barely visible in the dim moonlight.

“I chose to join you for this, don't make me regret it so quickly with insults towards my way of life.”

“I never said there was anything wrong with liking books. Which reminds me, I'd like to borrow the next one in that series, if you have it.”

“Talk to my familiar, she'd know.” If you remember correctly, she's recently started reading it as well.

“When you moved in and saw the library, you said you'd read every book in it. How's that been coming along lately?”

“I haven't had much of a chance to read for leisure lately, my work as a magician takes priority. The constant distractions that come from outside the library haven't given me much free time either.”

“Well, there's no rush. We live in Gensokyo, the land of eternity, now. Our whole lives are free time.” She pauses for a moment, before continuing. “But you know, an eternity can be deceptive. If you don't watch out for it, it can all pass by in the blink of an eye.”

“Is there a particular reason you're reminding me of this?” Most of what she says is just idle chatter, but you get the feeling she’s actually trying to be serious for once.

“Oh, none at all. I'm just talking to myself.” she replies, a slight grin barely revealing her fangs.

“You know, if you're this bored, why don't you go shoot some fairies or whatever it may be that entertains you.” you reply, irritated at yourself for your prior curiosity. You should have known better than to think Remilia of all people would take anything seriously.

“As one gets older, one starts to appreciate the more refined things in life. I'm simply enjoying the sight of the fireflies. There are quite a lot of them out tonight.”

As she says that, Sakuya finishes a final round of Danmaku against a particularly resilient firefly youkai.

“That comment is totally unfitting for the situation, you know. And you’ve been at for a while, but should I even dare to ask why you’re putting on the mature and refined lady act?”

“Well you see Patchy, since we're expecting company tonight, I'm just practicing a bit.”

“I see.”

“Still, you bring up a valid point. There's no point in wasting all my good manners on you.” You feel like you should be offended by that, but it is true that you really don't care about things like manners anyway.

In your silence, Remilia continues unabated. “So, as my friend, I feel it is your duty to allow me to act as I please around you until we meet tonight's guests.”

No matter what you say, in the end she'll just be doing whatever she wants anyway, so you just nod.

“Alrighty. First thing's first. I think a little bit of girl talk is in order. How are things going between you and Alice?”

“I should be the one asking you how things are going for that scheme between you and Alice.”

“I did say that I'd explain that to you, didn't I? Well, truthfully, on a wonderful imperishable night such as this, I am indeed having a hard time not letting the truth slip out. Since it's such a beautiful night out tonight, I'll tell you that there's actually at least two schemes at work here. There is Alice's, which I hesitate to call a scheme in the first place, and then there is my own personal agenda, which I will very readily call a scheme. Perhaps, if I were to see the real moon tonight, that would convince me to tell you about Alice's plan, but for now, you only get to hear about mine, specifically, the part which concerns you. The rest would be, I'm afraid, very uninteresting for you.”

You’ve had enough of her prattling. She’s already pulled you along with her on this trip; you don’t need to put up with this as well. “Enough mincing words Remilia. If you're going to tell me, then be quick about it.”

“Being terse with others will get you nowhere in life, Patchy.”, she says disapprovingly. “But fine, I'll skip the rest and head straight to the big reveal, as a special treat for you. The end goal of my scheme is...to start the fires of romance between Alice and you!”

She said that like it was some big reveal, but does she really expect you to believe that’s all she has planned? “I already knew that you were trying to do that. Also there's no way that I'll believe that that is your real agenda.”

“Why not? Manipulating fate is already my hobby, and while I might be using string that is more scarlet than red, it's the same basic principle.”

“Well, however you try to accomplish tat, I doubt you'll find much success. I can testify that for any real magician, magic is far more important than love.”

“Oh, I'm well aware of that from past experience, Patchy.”

“Just to clarify for myself, this love plan of yours, it doesn't have any connection to what happened between us about a century ago, correct?”

“Oh, that. No worries there, Patchy. We've been over this before, but that's ancient history now. A strictly physical relationship, we were both just doing a bit of exploring and experimenting because we were confused and mistook friendship for something more. Now let’s not mention that again, if Alice were to hear about it, she might get a tad jealous. Although, maybe that kind of development could be nice as well.”

“You’re trying to set us up, but does she even see me like that? As I see it, we’re still rivals.”

“No, not yet, but my schemes are deeper than the oceans. Look forward to the next development.”

“Your plan won’t suceed.”

“Love is the weed of the heart, Patchy. It’ll spring up no matter how you try to avoid it. On the other hand, even weeds can’t grow from stones.”

“I do have a heart, it’s simply devoted to my work and I have no need of it elsewhere.”

“I suppose I’ll just have to see what I can do to change that.” She turns to you with a predatory grin. “Although, thinking back to that time does remind me, I would someday like another taste of magician's blood. How about this? If you neglect Alice for too much longer, then I'll swoop down and eat her up myself, if you know what I mean.”

“I have no lack of Knowledge regarding your appetite, but won't Reimu be sad if you start cheating on her?”

“She doesn't see me like that and you know it.”

Something occurs to you. “So, is that why you're trying to show off a mature side of yourself?”

“No, that's just my hobby. Sometimes even I like to act my age, after all.”

“Perhaps if you did it more, you'd outgrow the body of a child?” Only a child would love pranks as much as she does, after all. Maybe if you can get her to move past it, you can enjoy a respite from her games. You won't be holding out much hope for that, though.

“About that, I'm quite young at heart, you see, and as a natural consequence, my physique matches myself too well for the common person to appreciate.”

“It'd be a real shame if Reimu were to reject you based on your appearance.”

“Why do you keep mentioning her, by the way?”

“Well, you're the kind of person who wants anything they can't have.”

“Not holding back for social niceties, as always. You're certainly a lot different now than the cute bookworm I thought I was inviting in so long ago.”

“And you're certainly not the noble young lady you acted like then either.”

“It's not my fault that my looks can be deceiving.”

“Oh? I was under the impression that you thrived on deception.”

“There is no denying that.”

The conversation peters out, as you notice that there seems to be something affecting your vision. You can still see, but the light of the fake moon seems to have dimmed, or perhaps your eyes are playing tricks on you. You can just barely hear the tune of a bird song, but only birds of ill portent would fly at night. You can make out the figure of Sakuya in a Danmaku duel with some sort of winged creature, the source of that song you heard and likely the blindness as well. She seems to be having some trouble, only able to rely on her human senses to combat this unnatural blindness.

[ ] Throw in some supporting Danmaku yourself.
-[ ] Royal Flare Low Level.
-[ ] Agni Shrine
-[ ] You don't need aspellcard for this.
[ ] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.
[ ] Suggest to Remilia that she assist her servant.

All Danmaku option votes will be counted together. If you have an opinion regarding which type of Danmkau you want used, but don’t want to vote for that unless Danmaku wins in general, be sure to specify what that is along with your first vote choice.

If you think Danmaku choices should be counted separately, say so, and if a majority agrees then we’ll switch to that.
>> No. 60904
[X] Suggest to Remilia that she assist her servant.
>> No. 60905
Does chibi vampire feel responsible for us going Hikki?

[X] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.

Let's not overreact and look like a fool. If Sakuya needs backup, Remilia will step in. Besides, do want more Remilia Patchouli dialogue.

>>That filename.
OP, you're having a lot of fun with this, aren't you.
>> No. 60906
[x] Suggest to Remilia that she assist her servant.
>> No. 60907
[X] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.

>needing help with a stage 2 boss

You just went full casual.
>> No. 60908
[X] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.
>> No. 60909
[X] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.

You never go full casual.
>> No. 60911
Technical difficulties. It'll be an easy fix with the right tools, but I just moved into the dorms and don't have those tools on hand.

Which brings me to the second thing I need to say. Fall term is starting, and thus I can't guarantee the same update speed. I will be trying, of course, but I felt like I should give fair warning.

As a side note, no outspoken response to the reveal in the last update? I will admit it was poorly foreshadowed, and perhaps something of a let down, but for the latter party, let me assure you that there is still more to be revealed.
>> No. 60912
I don't really feel as though the last update changed anything in the whole clueless Patchy, Lonely Alice and Troll Remilia dynamic we started out with.
>> No. 60914
Well, it's something I saw through before we even met Alice so it wasn't really that shocking of a reveal in my case.
>> No. 60915
[X] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle this herself.

So that's what she wants, or claims to want. It was kinda surprising, though she more or less said it right to Alice's face.
I'm wondering on the Why, as well. With the hinting at eternity being able to go by in the blink of an eye, I wonder if some sinister fate's coming.... or having her magician and another together somehow benefits her. Maybe she just wants Alice to move in full time so she can entertain Flandre with puppet shows and the like?
>> No. 60916
Remilia playing matchmaker wasn't really the reveal I was referring to...
>> No. 60917

Well...I reread the update, and the only other thing that surprised me is the fact that Sakuya apperantly sucks at danmaku.
>> No. 60919
>>“Oh, that. No worries there, Patchy. We've been over this before, but that's ancient history now. A strictly physical relationship, we were both just doing a bit of exploring and experimenting because we were confused and mistook friendship for something more. Now let’s not mention that again, if Alice were to hear about it, she might get a tad jealous. Although, maybe that kind of development could be nice as well.”

What do you suppose this relationship entails?
Did Patchouli let Remilia drink her blood? Was it sexual? Was Yuri once in the air?

Personally, I only have speculation at best, and will be holding my guess until we hear more. Remilia being an old lover of some sort would explain the pseudo-closeness, but I honestly can't imagine this Patchouli being anyone's lover.
>> No. 60920
[X] Yuri option

All day every day
>> No. 60921

If you reread the section you quoted, you will find that Remilia detailed exactly what that relationship entailed, thus there's no need for speculation.
>> No. 60922
I got the impression that it was entirely one-sided on Remilia's part, and her use of "we" is a blatant lie to cover her dignity.
>> No. 60923
File 140891545942.jpg - (130.39KB, 704x600, A Memory from the past perhaps.jpg) [iqdb]
[ ] Continue talking with Remilia, Sakuya can handle herself.

Sakuya is a capable maid, and while you aren't as blasé as Remilia about Danmaku and other forms of fighting, you know she shouldn't have trouble with small fry such as these. You turn back to Remilia, who hasn't seemed to notice, or perhaps simply does not care that her servant is presently engaging an enemy.

Having given it sufficient thought to make a reasonable argument to yourself that you have adequately considered the scenario tactically, you conclude that you don't particularly care either. Remilia seems to be in a good mood, and while you know that anything she doesn't want to slip out won't, her whimsy might gain you a few valuable tidbits of information about the parts of Gensokyo that exist outside your library. It is frustrating to have to dance to her game, but letting yourself get prideful about stupid things like this would make you no better than her. You do have to admit, that on the few rare times the two of you have gotten along enough to work together on something, her personal abilities did compliment yours very nicely, though knowing the intolerably smug look she'd get on her face hearing it means that you'd never admit it out loud.

“Speaking of days gone by, it wasn't too long ago that we used to go out like this every night. Partners in crime, an unstoppable duo. Your brains and strategy, my brawn and dashing good looks, it felt like we could take on the world.”

Those nights are now but a memory of the distant past, though not so dim a memory for you to start falsifying the facts of them, unlike a certain child.

“You're exaggerating, Remilia, and I believe also stealing lines from certain books as well.”

“It's not theft if you take a bunch at once from different places.”

“No, it definitely still is, and you’re starting to sound like a certain rat I’ve been having problems with as of late. Besides, what're you feigning nostalgia for, you've already got a replacement for whatever nighttime activity you may desire.” You nod towards Sakuya, who seems to be doing fine, although her motions are somewhat erratic and lack her usual finesse.

“Oh my, feeling a little jealous, Patchy? Alice would be in tears if she heard you.”

“Exceedingly doubtful, and that's not the case regardless. I was just noting that a certain someone seems to be having a lot of trouble letting go of the past.”

“Talking about yourself, Patchy?”

“No, just a pesky little mosquito.”

“You say some pretty mean things.” She laughs off your jibe, “As I recall, however, I wasn't the one who ran away and locked myself in a library afterward.”

There have been many times in your life that you have chosen to back down and run away. Running away from conflict has generally served you best. At that time, you were not running away. You simply woke up from the silly little dream you had been living, and got your priorities back on track.

“I did not run away, I merely reaffirmed my dedication to what I truly care about, my research.”

“Whatever you say, Patchy, but know that there's always life outside your library, but you'll only get to see it if you leave.”

The life she chose is out here, but yours is still waiting for you in your libraries vault. She can lecture all she likes about the benefits of her path, but you've already made your decision, and you've had your fill of talking with Remilia.

“Where's the rendezvous point with the other two?”

“Just outside of the human village.”

“Is that wise?” Humans are not very accepting of non-humans.

“Things are a little bit different here in Gensokyo, Patchy. Besides,I want to do a little bit of refueling. It does take a lot of energy to reach the moon, or so I've heard.”

“Well, blood is hardly the best medium for energy.”

Sakuya seems to have finished things on her end. She approaches you and Remilia with a deep bow. “I'm sorry, Milady, for the delay. Slowing down the flow of time has been somewhat taxing for me, my deepest apologies. Primarily, it is affecting my ability to make small and precise dodges.”

“Is that so? That’s fine, I was just thinking I wanted a piece of the action anyway. I'll take care of the complex dodging, you just keep acting as my screen. I'll be very annoyed if you make me fight anyone too weak though, Sakuya.”

With that, you set off in the direction of the human village, apparently. You've never been, but Remilia says it's in the direction you're heading.

You were already nearby, but when you arrive, you find that there is neither humans nor a village here. Instead, a lone human stands in your way, wearing blue and a hat that looks very much like an ornamental box.

She speaks to your group. “Begone devils.”

To which Sakuya responds, “I'm a human, actually.”

“You've served me for so long, can you really be called human anymore?” retorts Remilia.

“All of you, stop fighting.” Comes another voice, one that you recognize but can't put a name to. You realize that voice belonged to Alice, as she walks out from amongst the shadows of the surrounding woodland. “Ah, Patchouli. I wasn’t expecting you here.”

Behind Alice, Marisa ambles out of the woods with her hands full of recently picked mushrooms. “Yo, teach, they're with us, so would you mind letting them through? I'd hate to have to blast ya again.”

The person in the odd hat sighs, looking defeated. “Very well then, just don't harm the village.”

“No one's going any further.” Another voice? This encounter seems to have suddenly gotten very crowded. Reimu flies out in front of your group, blocking your path.“This incident is my business, don't interfere.”

“Oh? As youkai and creatures of the night, I'd say that this is more our domain than yours.”

“I'd rather not waste the night bandying words with you. Back down now, all of you, or I will have to use force.”

“Actually there's not much to worry about with regards to time, my lovely servant has already made this night eternal.”

“So that was your doing as well? No chance that I'll let that pass without a fight.”

“I'd have it no other way, Reimu, I do have a score to settle with you, after all. Unfortunately I also have the business of retrieving the moon to get to.” She heaves a dramatic sigh. “What a tough decision indeed.” She suddenly turns to you and grins, her fangs gleaming brightly even in the dim light of the false moon. “But tough decisions are why I keep my cute little bookworm around. So then, Patchy, what's the strategy going to be?”

Is what she says, but you have no doubt that whatever you say will be meaningless. In the end, she’ll just keep doing whatever she wants anyway.

“I'll trust whatever decision you make, Patchouli.” Alice says stiffly. Trust is an easy thing to speak about, but you know there can be no real trust between rivals.

You don’t like the direction this is heading in.

Marisa shrugs, adding “I'm always up for a chance to go mono e mono with Reimu, but you seem like you know what you're doing Patchy, so I'll let you decide.”

“There you have it Patchy, what’s the plan going to be?” Remilia says with a snicker.


[ ] Let Remilia have her rematch with Reimu. Proceed with Alice and Marisa.
[ ] Let Marisa go one on one against Reimu. Proceed with the other three.
[ ] 5 versus 1 might even out the odds in your favor. Maybe. Hopefully.
>> No. 60924
[ ] 5 versus 1 might even out the odds in your favor. Maybe. Hopefully.

Doesn't really seem Patchy's style, though. So instead:
[X] Let Remilia have her rematch with Reimu. Proceed with Alice and Marisa.

I think we've dealt with Remilia enough for the time being, and we should still hear Alice's side of things; who knows if Remi is to be believed on the scheme, after all
>> No. 60925
[x] Let Remilia have her rematch with Reimu. Proceed with Alice and Marisa.
>> No. 60926
[x] Let Remilia have her rematch with Reimu. Proceed with Alice and Marisa.

I think trying to fight Reimu wouldn't turn out so well. Remember that Reimu paired up with Yukari. Also remember that the ghost team fought Marisa during IN. I can just see this snowballing into a full out war and taking far too much time if this turns into an all of stage 4 all at once clusterfuck. Even if leaving on our own leads too a fight with the ghost team, that'll still be a lot easier than having to deal with assists from Yukari and trying to keep coordinated enough that we don't just take ourselves out with friendly fire.

And Patchouli herself pretty much implied that she'd rather avoid conflict if possible, which this would accomplish.
>> No. 60927
[x] Let Remilia have her rematch with Reimu. Proceed with Alice and Marisa.

This Remilia is really annoying. Let's ditch her while she's fighting.
>> No. 60928
File 140910016164.png - (937.79KB, 990x1615, Suddenly A Relevant Character.png) [iqdb]
"Remilia, take care of Reimu. The rest of us will go ahead."

“My pleasure. I trust that you can find your way without me, Patchy?”

“Of course.” You can feel the power of the moon, albeit only slightly, and it is definitely coming from the bamboo forest on the outskirts of the village.

Reimu only sighs. "You ought to just make things easier on yourself and just give up. Yukari, can you stop them for me?"

How could you forget the gap youkai? She could be a huge problem for you on her own as well. You don't see her, but she can teleport with her gaps apparently. Where will she show up, where is she now? You're at a disadvantage not knowing, but making a careless move out of fear would be worse.

"Um, Yukari? Did you hear me? Did you fall asleep again or something?" Reimu calls out into the darkness.

Are they trying to get you to lower your guard, lure you into a false sense of safety before they strike? This is certainly a formidable team.

Marisa starts laughing. Did she seriously fall for it? It'd be better not to correct her though. Perhaps you can act fooled as well to draw the gap youkai out of hiding. When she comes, you'll be ready for her, or at least as ready as you can ever be. You start to pool mana in your hands discreetly, and keep the incantations on the tips of your lips.

Reimu, on the other hand, looks like she is getting increasingly frustrated. She's really getting into this act. “Goddamnit Yukari!”

Marisa turns to you. “What's the hold up Patchy? Yukari is a no show, so let's go ahead.”

“But it might be a trap.”

“Hahaha, I don't think so. Danmaku is all about being straightforward with your feelings, even Yukari wouldn't resort to tricks. Or more like, she wouldn't feel like she would need too.”

“That sounds more like your personal philosophy than a universal one.”

“I don't really know what you mean, but this night isn't actually eternal, so we ought to get a move on.”

Remilia chimes in. “You heard her, Patchy. Leave this one to me and go ahead. I'll catch up with you once I'm finished here.” She then adds, a moment later, “I've always wanted to say that. Now then,” She turns back to Reimu, “It looks like it's going to be a very long night tonight. What do you say we have some fun together? Young Demon Lord!”

Remilia activates her first spell card. It's a barrier type that she uses to keep her prey from escaping, but you understand why she's using it now. She's keeping the Shrine Maiden inside the barrier with her to give you time to get away. A sound tactical move, though for someone as old as she is, you shouldn't be surprised.

On your side of the barrier is Sakuya. “Milady, please allow me to assist you.”

“Sorry Sakuya, this one is one-on-one, and you'd be dead weight here anyway.”

It's true, Sakuya would just get in Remilia's way here. Additionally, since Sakuya is the one slowing down the night, she needs to be protected.

“Then, at least allow me to stay by your side here Mistress.”

“As the head of the house of Scarlet, I order you to stay with those other three.”

“As you wish, so shall it be, Milady.”

The four of you turn and depart into the bamboo forest that lies at the edge of the human village. It really is like a maze, and it has a certain uneasy sense to it. Although you have studied eastern magics and culture for so many years, you still sometimes wish to return to your homeland along the Mediterranean.

You look over at the others, to gauge their reactions to this place. Marisa is, predictably, still the same usual ball of excess energy as usual. She seems to be a bit impatient with your pace, but the fault is with her for not being able to settle down and match the steady pace you've set.

Sakuya is expressionless as always. She seems as wary as someone in this situation should be. A bit of nervous tension is good for Danmaku. The only times you've ever seen her lose her composure has been around Remilia, but the poor girl doesn't seem to know that she's only being toyed around with. Indeed, even now, she keeps making not so subtle glances back in the direction you came from.

Is occurs to you that Alice hasn't spoken much, but you've noticed that for her to be quiet during group conversations is more or less the norm. She is, however, fidgeting nervously quite a lot. What could be making her so nervous? Does she have something planned? Whatever her goal is, you feel you can say with a certain degree of certainty that it doesn't involve directly harming you. If she had wanted to do that, she has had numerous very good opportunities already that she hasn't taken. When you were drunk, sleeping, or ill. All those times you were vulnerable, but she didn't strike. In all likelihood, her plans for you involve stealing the philosopher's stone, but of course you didn't bring it out from the vault tonight. This is not something worth risking your years of research for.

The precious few moments of silence you had are rudely disrupted by, of course, Marisa. “Yo, guys, what's with the silence? We're solving an incident, not attending a funeral here!”

“We're quiet because we're taking care of business, not just doing this for fun, unlike some people.” You take the opportunity to tell Marisa off.

“That makes it sound like a chore. You guys need to loosen up a bit more.”

Surprisingly, Alice is the one who speaks next. “Um, can't we all just get along a bit for the time being?”

You're not gonna let that pass. “That's a good joke, but Marisa and I are antithesis existences. We get along by avoiding each other.”

“Aw, that's mean Patchy. All you've got to do is lighten up a little bit.”

“I can just as easily 'lighten up' as you can sit still and be quiet.”

“Hey, I can be quiet when I need to be.”

“Oh yeah? Then let's put that to the test. A game, if you will.”

She's so competitive, this is an easy checkmate. “You're on, what's the game?”

“The game is you being quiet for the rest of the evening.”

“Hey! That's not a fun game at all, Patchy.”

Ignoring Marisa, you turn back to Alice. “As I said. Antithesis existences.”

“R-really? Cause it felt like you were g-getting along well just then.”

“You might want to reevaluate your definition of that.”

“M-maybe so.”

The conversation is put to rest by a commotion and the arrival of two ghastly figures that you don't recognize. Sakuya, you notice, bristles upon seeing them, whereas Marisa flies ahead, saying “Don't worry, I've got this one.” before yelling at the new arrivals. “Move and I'll shoot!” And then a second later “No, wait, I messed that up. I mean, shoot and then I'll move.”

“What?” The shorter of the two new arrivals speaks.

“Basically, I'm challenging you two to a Danmaku duel, cause you're obviously the cause of this incident.”

What exactly does Marisa think she's doing here? Obviously these two are not the culprits, the trace of the stolen moon leads elsewhere.

“Nono, we're here to solve the incident. Why would we even steal the moon in the first place?”

The taller of the two speaks up. “Hey, Youmu, do you think the moon tastes like cheese? I think we ought to add it to the dragon platter once we find it.”

“Ah hah! I knew you two were the culprits.” Marisa exclaims. “Well basically I'm mostly just bummed that Reimu got there before I did last time, so I'm taking this opportunity now.”

What an incredibly selfish reason. Alice seems to have similar concerns. “Marisa, I asked you to help me solve this incident; don't tell me you're gonna leave when we're so close.”

“Sorry, Alice, but I see this chance in front of me, and I just gotta take it. ‘Sides, it doesn't feel right, beating Reimu like this. I want to overcome her on my own.”

Once again, she's managed to successfully mix up her personal philosophies with more pressing issues at hand. “Marisa, we want to get the moon back. If you don't care about that, why are you even here?”

“Gee Patchy, I thought you'd be a bit happier about your antithesis staying behind.”

That's true. You too let your personal distaste for Marisa's actions override your dislike for company. You've been around her too much evidently, she's rubbing off on you terribly.

Suddenly, Sakuya appears behind and slightly to your right, and says quietly. “Lady Patchouli, if you will allow a selfish request, I also have some unfinished business with these two.”

You don’t want to divide your forces further, but you’re wary about letting Marisa leave your sight while you’re this far away from your library. Perhaps it would be fine to let Sakuya stay to keep an eye on her?

[ ] Allow Sakuya to stay.
[ ] Don't allow Sakuya to stay.
>> No. 60929
[X] Allow Sakuya to stay
>> No. 60930
Wasn't the whole reason Sakuya extended the night so they wouldn't miss a flower viewing even the next day? Why is she going through so much trouble for a dumb reason like that.

[X] Don't allow Sakuya to stay.

Cuz she needs to be protected.
>> No. 60931
[X] Allow Sakuya to stay
-[X] "Have fun with the half ghost"

Patchouli needs to start changing at some point.
>> No. 60932
In a few updates, there will be a major event. It should be noted though that what type of change occurs is still to be decided upon based on your choices.

Coincidentally, it might involve flower viewing.

No worries, though, I won't be dragging you through every incident.
>> No. 60933
[x] Allow Sakuya to stay.

I-it's not like she wants to be alone with Alice or anything.
>> No. 60934
[X] Allow Sakuya to stay.

And so, Marisa and Sakuya versus Youmu and Yuyuko.
Will they be alright without focus movement?
>> No. 60939
[X] Allow Sakuya to stay.

Good thing Yuyuko won't just off them. Sakuya can maintain the night while fighting a half-baked gardener, I'm sure.
And throwing the done a bone means we can either Patch up (Hey-oh!) with Alice. Well, her patch up with Patchouli.
And a BIG change coming up? That's got me pretty excited already.
As for the reveal you meant a couple updates ago, I feel silly now, apologies. Their previous 'relationship' has me wondering on the actuality of patchy history, given we've gotten snippets every so often. A lot of mystery as to how she became how she is.
>And I hope I am not the only one who finds the idea of a vampire and a young magician, having some 'hilarious' adventures as creatures of the night are want to do, funny.
>> No. 60951
File 140925428029.jpg - (373.99KB, 850x637, Patchouli Friendship 1.jpg) [iqdb]
[X] Allow Sakuya to stay behind.

“Sakuya, stay here with Marisa, and keep an eye on her. I'd be very displeased to come back from this to find that she had taken the opportunity to 'borrow' anything from my library while I'm away.”

“Understood, Lady Patchouli, and I appreciate your allowance of this selfish request of mine.”

Marisa, of course, feels the need to make a statement. “Hey, what kinda partner do you think I am?”

“I don't.”

“In that case, I'll be helping myself to your books later.”

Sakuya removes a knife from her thigh strap. “I gave Lady Patchouli my word that I would not allow it.”

“No worries, chief maid, there's plenty of me to go around.”

The ghastly duo seem to be trying to use this opportunity to sneak past Marisa, but she whirls around to face them. “First things first though, I'm taking care of you two. Sakuya, want to team up here, or do I get to hog all the fun?”

“Lady Remilia would be displeased if our expedition were to be outshone by another. For the purpose of preventing that, my knives are yours to command.” She even ends that with a small bow.

“That 's a bit too stuffy of a speech, but I can tell your heart is in the right place. Let's get it on!”

Well, that settles that. With Sakuya around, your books should be safe, and so should Marisa. Probably at least enough to appease Reimu. Best not to waste time here though, and you'll be glad to be away from Marisa's love of incessant conversation. You're a bit apprehensive about having your forces split up this much, but you don't really have many other options.

Alice follows you silently as you make your way through the bamboo forest. It would be a very nice and calming silence, if it weren't for the tangible sense of anxiety emanating from her. It's making you feel uptight just being around her, and after a short while you get the sense that rather than diminishing, it's actually growing. If something has her distracted, she won't be able to keep up with her half of the fighting in the upcoming battles. You halt in your flight and turn around to confront her about it.

“What is it?”

“Ah!” She seems very startled suddenly, before recovering enough to respond. “I'm sorry, what did you say?”

“I can tell you're nervous. I'm asking why.”

“Oh, I'm fine. Quite alright. T-thanks for the concern though.”

You don't claim to be good at small talk, nor are you Sherlock Holmes or an attorney who can sniff out a false truth at 50 paces, but you can tell that's a blatant lie. The fact that she isn't being truthful with you is to be expected from a rival, but certainly no less worrying.

“That's a lie. You've got something other than Danmaku on your mind, and I don't want you distracted in a fight.”

A short sigh. “So you noticed, huh?” It'd be pretty hard to not notice, even for you. “I was just wondering if you had really forgiven me, or if you were just here with us because Reimu or Remilia forced you to.”

What's with this business about forgiveness? Why would you forgive a rival? What kind of rival asks for forgiveness in the first place? It's long overdue for you to clarify exactly what the relationship between the two of you will be.

“Allow me to be very clear with you here Alice. I see you as a rival. For tonight, our interests align, but after tonight” For a moment, you make eye contact, and the sadness in her eyes makes you choke on your words, but you have to finish this. You can't let her get any closer, can't let anyone worm their way into your heart. The only person you can really trust is yourself, and anyone who tries to get close to you is a threat to the order of your world of one. “After tonight, I don't want to see you again.”

Silence reigns. A sharp intake of breath, then a shaky exhale, followed by a slow but steady swelling of the chest. You can't take your eyes off the ground, but it needed to be said. She was a threat. She forced you to say that. You had no choice, you tell yourself

“N-no! The one thing I won't do is leave you alone. I promised myself that I would save you from your loneliness.”

What? Who is she to act like some kind of hero? You don't need saving, you chose yourself to lock yourself away. You don't need the outside world, you don't need companions, and you certainly don't need another hero. “I don't need saving. Please, just leave me alone.”

“I refuse. I've decided that I've got to be strong here. I won't back down this time.”

You don't understand. Why is she like this? This has to be some trap. Why won't she let you live your peaceful life in solitude? “I'll make you stay away.”

“I won't fight you, b-but I'll keep coming back. N-no matter how long it takes. That's what I've decided. No one deserves to be left all alone.”

“I chose to be alone.”

“T-then I'll change your mind! I’ll show you what you’re missing out on.”

Your mind's a mess right now, your hands are trembling, and you're feeling totally overwhelmed and confused. Why would anyone go to such lengths for you? You don't understand. So you do what you do best. You run away.

You don't look back. You don't turn back. Running away is the only thing you can do. After a while, you notice that there is a strange red tinge to your vision, and you hear a voice. “You've already driven yourself half crazy, this will be an easy one.” Suddenly a pair of bright red ovals appear in the center of your vision, staying there even when you turn your head or close your eyes. Those red eyes...Remilia? No, her eyes are more like...

“Hey, Patchy, doesn't it feel wrong, being with me? I've got a body like this, and my eyes look so… inhuman.”

“You say that, but I'm younger than you, so shouldn't you be the one feeling odd? Besides, I like your eyes. They're like roses.”

“Aww, thanks Patchy. Say, tonight, I want to become even closer to you.”

“You mean, you want to do that? I don't really know...”

“Please, Patchy? I really want it. It'll only hurt at first.”

You remember the overpowering redness of her eyes at that time.

You wake up with a start, and find yourself looking into Remilia's rose red eyes. You instinctively put a hand to your neck.

To your right, there's some flashing lights, but you can't make out any distinct details, and you can feel wind rushing by your face. You're flying? No, you're being carried through the air?

“Guess we gave you a bit more than you could handle, huh Patchy? That's okay. Reimu's taking care of the incident, I'm taking you back to the mansion.”

As you fall back into darkness, you remember...

“Isn't it dangerous to be flying like this, Remi? I'm quite a bit bigger than you...”

“We fly solo all the time, this isn't that different. Don't worry, I've got a good grip.”

“Hey, watch where you touching me.”

“It's not my fault, you're just full of fun places to touch. How's your asthma?”

“Doing better. Thanks for this.”

“My pleasure. It's not every day I get to fly with such a beautiful girl in my arms. Carrying you like this reminds me of a prince and his princess, or maybe a bride and groom. How's that sound?”

“I don't think you'd look very good in a tux, or shining armor either for that matter.”

You remember thinking that maybe being close to someone wouldn't be so bad after all.

You wake up in your bed, but something feels wrong. That feeling of strangeness doesn't leave you as walk through the library.You try to summon your familiar to you, but there’s no response. It seems your magic can’t reach her. Something is definitely wrong here. As you walk by the exit of the library, you do a double take. The doorway is gone, replaced by a solid wall. You approach it, trying to detect what kind of illusion might be in place.

“It's no illusion.”

You whirl around to find a short green haired girl, although she seems to carry herself like a grown woman, who is carrying a metal rod and has a very elaborate hat.

“This is what you wanted, right? A world all to your own?”

“Who’re you?”

“Shikieiki Yamaxanadu, a judge of the dead. You're still alive, don’t worry. I just like to do some of my work a bit proactively, while my clientele still have a chance to repent.”

“Is that what you're here for? To try to change the way I live?”

“No, not at all. You’ll be making that decision for yourself, but before you do, I want to remind you that your choices affect more than yourself.”

“I live alone.”

“No one is an island.”

“I try.”

“Oh, I'm well aware, but maybe you ought to consider changing that. Might I suggest a little bit of reading? As I'm sure you're aware, a good book can take you to other worlds, put you in others shoes, and let you experience things you might never have a chance to otherwise.”

She gestures towards a set of books at your reading desk. You know very well how books work. It doesn't look like you have much of a choice, other than what to read.

[ ] To Play with Human Shapes.
[ ] To Be by Your Side.
[ ] To Have an Eternal Rival
[ ] To Have Blood on Your Hands.
[ ] To Be Fair and Equal in all Things.
[ ] To Serve unto Death.
[ ] To Hide from the World and Never be Found
How this will work: You won't get to read every book, but you won't be limited to just one either. There will be multiple stages of book reading here, and the list of available books may grow or shrink without warning. Also as a heads up, I'm going to be gone all weekend and Monday, so the next update won't be until Tuesday or Wednesday.
>> No. 60952
Remilia could be a real charmer when she wanted to be.

[x] To Play with Human Shapes.

Might as well start at the beginning.
>> No. 60953
[X] To Play with Human Shapes

Alice time, gogogo!
>> No. 60954
[X] To Hide from the World and Never be Found
>> No. 60955
Why is Patchy's desire to be alone being treated like a bad thing? I mean...I understand the whole "no person is an island thing", but forcing someone to intetact with others without regard to their consent or preference is not the right way to go about this. If I was Patchy, the amount of annoyance I would feel towords this whole situation would be nothing short of profound. Alice, Remilia, and the Yama should all be ashamed of themselves.
>> No. 60960
She, like most people with a social issue, is rejecting what she doesn't understand. An uninformed choice is no choice at all.

[x] To Be by Your Side.
Not so bad eh?
>> No. 60961
This will be discussed at length, particularly in further interactions with certain characters. I'm personally really looking forward to that. When is it more important to act to someone's benefit, rather than their wishes? Each character has their own definition of when that is okay.
It is certainly a drastic set of actions they've each chosen to taken, but Patchy's also taken a few radical actions of her own.
>> No. 60962
[x] To Be by Your Side.

So, it feels like something happened with Remilia that drove Patchouli into herself. Perhaps Remi feels guilty now?
>> No. 60963
[X] To Hide from the World and Never be Found
>> No. 60964
[X] To Have an Eternal Rival
>> No. 60965
[X] To Play with Human Shapes.
>> No. 60972
[X] To Hide from the World and Never be Found

To me, this feels like a good starting point.
It's where Patchouli is at, currently, and she should understand herself before trying to understand others.

It's not as if someone asked her to decide whether or not she wants to be among people without knowing what "people" are like.
She's a youkai, meaning she's (at least) hundreds of years old.
I think she understands more than well enough to make an informed decision.

This is more to make her reflect and I think the others hope that it will make her realize she might have come to the wrong conclusion.
>> No. 60973
[X] To Hide from the World and Never be Found.
>> No. 60974
[X] To Play with Human Shapes.

If Patchouli's so paranoid of Alice, why not find out what she wants?

>It's where Patchouli is at, currently, and she should understand herself before trying to understand others.
Except the whole point of this choice is to get someone else's point of view. I'm pretty sure the "Hide from the World" choice is Flandre.
>> No. 60975
I don't know, I don't think Flandre is hiding from the world by choice, so much as being hidden by Remilia.

While the author can of course do what they want, I feel like Patchouli is actively hiding (and running) from, well, everything at this point, so it's more likely to be her.

Then again, the way this is set up it might not have Patchouli as a choice, in which case...
yeah, Flandre would be the only logical choice there.
>> No. 60976
[X] To Play with Human Shapes.
>> No. 60981
[X] To Play with Human Shapes.
I want to know why Alice wishes to give life to her dolls.
>> No. 60987
I am still alive, I'm just putting a lot of work into this next update.

It's a pretty big one by by standards thus far anyway, and also an important one so I feel like I have to get it perfect. Hope you're all looking forward to it despite the wait. I loved the voter turnout last time, which is why it feels especially bad that this one has been delayed.

Ideally I'll be posting sometime today but I don't want to make promises if I'm not sure I can keep them.
>> No. 60989
New thread. Same Patchy? Maybe not.
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