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Something was near.
He couldn't see what it was yet. Leaves didn't rustle more than usually and there were no unexpected movements in the corner of his eyes, but there was a faint hint of unmistakable awareness in the air. He didn't know what the other being was, but it didn't matter. No matter the size of an interloper, the intent of a forest creature walking by or the amount of danger that anything could pose, something was there, so his body changed accordingly.
There were no different levels of change. Over the course of the years, the... beast he transformed into looked more and more threatening, gaining traits from many a predator who had stumbled upon him, as was his nature. While his entire body rapidly grew to a monstrous size, razor sharp teeth sprang from his widening maw and two imposing tusks started to form at the sides. His skin tightened, so that rippling muscles revealed itself to any who looked upon him. Horns sprouted from his forehead, towering above the lower branches of the leaf-roof while claws extended from his forearm, ready to tear apart anything that threatened him.
As the transformation came to its end, he spotted something looking at him a good distance away, nearing his beloved home. The creatures attention was however undoubtedly drawn but the noises his growth made. He straightened his body, making himself as tall as possible, and let out a bestial roar...
He was lost. Hopelessly lost.
He shouldn't have gone into the forest, heck, he should not have gone near the forest, but with only two days left to pay the colossal debt, there were only three options left. Pay with his life, give up the farm or pay in rare goods... Youkai...
His life was obviously out, and when you only have one option, you have no choice, as his late father used to say.
Of course he ran at the sight of the first youkai he encountered, he was no warrior, he was a goddamn farmer! He ran into the woods, accepting the temporary safety the trees offered in return for his way home, losing all sense of direction in the endlessly twisting forest. Of course<
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