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File 124571089018.jpg - (331.06KB, 708x1000, syrac.jpg) [iqdb]
24650No. 24650
In an almost reflective action, I tried to contact the otherworldly magician.

…I forgot how to. My brain didn't want to cooperate fully. It felt fuzzy and swirly. I just ended up mumbling something. “...lovely.”

“So you will cooperate?” Alice mistook my mumble for assent.
“This has nothing to do with Marisa.” I slurred more than I wanted to. “Mai magic was a gift, alright? She's not my type and I definitely didn't do nothing with her, ok?” I rambled on a bit, seeing she didn't immediately say anything. “Look, you seem more serious about the magic thing,” I tried to look at her seriously, “But I'm not sided with anyone, so I have no allegiance to, uh, drop. So if it came down to between you and her...”

You thought you saw her raise an eyebrow.

“Wait. I don't even really know what you're talking about. 'Cooperate against her when the time comes'? What the hell... this better be about one of Suika's games.”
“This is not as petty as that.” She informed me dryly. “And you already know about it. If not,” She seemed to entertain an idea momentarily, “I pity you. That means she used you and did not even have the decency to explain. That would be a result of her warped personality, I suppose...”
“I already told you, I did nothing with her.”
“Indeed.” She said with a dry voice that indicated she believed otherwise.
“...Is this some kind of magician's feud? If you're going to fight, I want no part of it... I owe nothing to either of you, and I want no part of that.”
“We'll just how much you owe soon enough.”

Her words sounded like a bit of a threat, making me wonder if she was going to do something to me. I took that as my cue to just leave her. I thought to walk to the party, leave her alone.

“Look, I can't tell you about where I learned magic. It's just an awesome and powerful source, probably better than her.” I moved, turning away from her.
“We're not done here.” Alice reacted strongly to my attempt to end the conversation. As soon as my back was turned to her, I found myself pressed against the wall unable to move. I was too confused and too inebriated to react properly. Something began to bind my joints together,“I don't believe a word you said. If you had nothing to hide, you would just tell the whole truth.”
“Let go of me! I said I have nothing to do with you or her! And I don't want to!”
“Sounds exactly like the line she would have instructed you to give.” She pushed me down to the floor, and crouched while keeping me pinned down. “I am just asking for a little honesty here. Is that so much to ask for? I can't let you go if you're just going to work against me.”

I struggled as best I could, never being able to articulate my joints more than a couple of centimeters.

“I have nothing against you.” Alice continued calmly. “If it makes you feel better, I really do like that you enjoy the puppetry. I put my heart into it, you know. You are probably the most... interesting person at the party.” She eased up on her hold, making blood flow into your extremities once more, “This is why I offered to help you develop in a focused manner. Magic isn't just about power, it's about using it to further one's interests.”

“Please just let me go.” You beg with as much of a straight voice as you can manage.
“I don't want to hurt you.” She loosened up even more, allowing you to turn to face her. “I just want you to consider the benefits of helping me.” She let go completely, and I took the chance to try to turn around and try to get up.

“When the time comes, I hope you'll make the right choice.” She said casually, as if the whole scene just then hadn't happened.

“Oho! Look what we have here!” A familiar inebriated voice cut in.
“Marisa.” Alice muttered stoically, rising up to deal with the newcomer. I did the same.
“Expected someone else?” The other girl smiled idiotically. She shouted out, “Hey people, I found them!”
“I assume that those pointless games are to begin again?”
“Hey, they're not 'pointless'!” She defended Suika's competition. “But no – we just don't want you to be so antisocial.”
“A kind consideration.” Alice's words were cold and sarcastic.
“Yeah, I know. So, what's with you?” She spoke her mind. “What's all this about you going off with Reimu's man into the dark little corners of the shrine? She'll be pissed at you.”

Reimu's man? It took me a moment to realize that she was talking about me. I didn't know if she was being serious. But even as swirly as my head felt, I still found it stupid and impossible.

In reply, Alice simply walked off, not uttering a single word.

“Tch. No sense of humor.” Marisa commented, sounding more upset than you thought she'd be. “Well, the others were asking about you there Arc. So how's about we go back?”

Despite my feelings from earlier, there wasn't a way out of this one, so I agreed and walked back with Marisa to the party. Everyone was there, including Suika who was chatting up everyone and drinking like there was no more tomorrow. My eyes turned to Alice, who sat quietly talking to the other girl in blue, looking like something approaching enjoyment. I could have sworn she was looking at me from the corner of her eyes, but the buzz in the room distracted me from watching too closely.

They were almost through another bottle, and it was up to me to get more alcohol. That must have been the real reason they were looking for me. I sighed and fetched a couple bottles more. I duly noted that the heavy bottles were even stronger stuff, and wondered how it was that no one had completely lost it yet.

“What's that?” I happened to walk back into a 'friendly debate'. Or so they insisted on calling it, it seemed to me to be more like an argument. Marisa defended her position strongly, “There's plenty more nutrients in mushrooms than any cucumber. Not to mention that there's an infinite amount of uses for them.”
“What kind of evidence do you have for that?” Nitori retorted. “Cucumbers also have many uses and are way tastier.”

...Really? I looked at the both of them with an expression that I'm sure that betrayed stupefaction. I knew that this was a debate made possible with the miraculous powers of alcohol, but still it felt wrong. Especially since others were weighing in with their own opinions, aligning themselves with one side or another. I had to hand it to them though, there was real passion on both sides. The only person that didn't seem to be getting involved was Reimu, who sat peacefully sipping her drink

[] Weigh in on the side of the mushroom zealots
[] Weigh in on the side of the cucumber disciples
[] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
Expand all images
>>No. 24651
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
>>No. 24652
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
>>No. 24653
[] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way

Oh Alice, just when we were interested you go and manage to screw things up.
>>No. 24654
[X]Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

That twit puppeteer.
Though at least she's expressing interest.
>>No. 24655
[X] Weigh in on the side of the cucumber disciples.

I'm going to be honest: I was hoping for Alice to try and bind us to her with a forced mana-transfer. By which I mean rape.
>>No. 24656
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

To be fair Alice had a hunch that Arc was hiding a secret, which he still manages to hold despite all that had happen. Just didn't happen to know if it truly had anything to do with Marisa.

Next thing we know we'll be seeing Alice peeping through windows or worse yet find little dolls hidden away amongst various things throughout Hakurei Shrine due to her possibly growing paranoia and obsession...
>>No. 24657
File 124572028053.png - (25.41KB, 500x550, 208395.png) [iqdb]
24657
>>24650
[X] Weigh in on the side of the cucumber disciples

While nutritionally inert (likely to burn more calories chewing and digesting it than you'll gain from eating one), the cucumber has numerous therapeutic uses: relief for inflammed skin, heartburn, acid stomach, gastritis, and ulcers, promotes digestion, normalizes blood pressure, prevents the splitting of hair and finger nails, etc. These are things a person in a rustic village is going to be interested in. Furthermore, I crave interaction with Nitori (and Yukari... especially Yukari), and nothing is going to make Alice twitch like a friendly debate with Marisa.

Fuck yeah, cucumbers!
>>No. 24659
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

Alice is a creepy stone cold bitch instead of a useless moeblob?

I love it.
>>No. 24660
>>24659

Reminds me of Desdaxis's Alice.
>>No. 24661
[+] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
-[+] "What kind of mushrooms are we talking about?"

Marisa rolls against her Botany skill.
>>No. 24662
[x] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.
>>No. 24664
File 124572844916.jpg - (450.67KB, 600x1153, BADASS.jpg) [iqdb]
24664
>>24655

It cannot be rape.

We would enjoy it. A lot.

Also this Alice is excellent.
ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED Isn't it sad, Scorn Alice?

[X] Weigh in on the side of the cucumber disciples
>>No. 24665
[X] The Way
[X] Switzerland
[X] remain grounded and stick with Reimu`s way
>>No. 24666
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.
>>No. 24667
[X] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.
I see scorn's alice is alive and well~.
>>No. 24668
[ze] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

Not the way of the Tao; the way of the Tea.
>>No. 24669
File 124574103266.jpg - (49.66KB, 638x353, through_the_dere.jpg) [iqdb]
24669
[x] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

Alice and Marisa deserve each other.
>>No. 24670
[O] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
>>No. 24671
[x] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.
>>No. 24680
[x] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way
[x] At least until things get too intense or tedious, then intervene.
- [x] Stand up. "Good friar miko, what say you! Which is greater, Nitori's cucumbers, or Marisa's mushrooms?"

Suika and Reimu points. Plus, a brewer's son is sure to find the possibility of mushroom grog and cucumber brandy fascinating.
>>No. 24682
[x] Remain grounded and stick with Reimu's way.

>>24680

I didn't think such a thing as a mushroom based beer/drink existed until I made a search...

http://www.lifewithbeer.com/home-brewing/mushroom-beer/winter-chanterelle-belgian-ale-recipe-2008.html[/spoiler]
>>No. 24690
File 124611940326.jpg - (338.47KB, 600x1520, close enough.jpg) [iqdb]
24690
Following the example of the shrine maiden, I sat this one out. Her composed and cool look she had as the two parties got rowdier was reassuring. Even though she had been drinking more than I thought she would have, she didn't let herself get flustered despite not-very-subtle overtures by each side to get her to align herself to their cause. Her polite nods and agreeable expression was my model, and I also kept brushing off any comments by either side with noncommittal answers and polite smiles.

This worked for the most part. Marisa was too busy trying to establish her choice's superiority to care. And the others siding with her (like the ones siding with Nitori) were more in it for the entertainment than ideological rigidity it seemed. It was pretty good entertainment, I have to admit. Highly educational as well. I underestimated the usefulness of each. Even though there was nothing graceful about loud rowdy girls bickering about fungus and gourds, it was fun to watch if only how passionate they were about it.

As things intensified, I instinctively retreated towards Reimu, seating right new to her. I couldn't shake the feeling that this could turn ugly real fast.

And it did turn bad. Just not in the way that I had maybe thought it would.

Instead of a brawl, I got something far more distressing. While the leaders of the cucumber faction and mushroom bloc found common ground in their dislike of knotweed, their followers returned to their loud bantering. I looked around, certain that Alice was still watching me despite the fact that she was talking to Suika about something.

“...so there's really nothing happening, huh?” I caught Aya badgering Reimu on an already exhausted subject. “My journalistic senses never lie, you know.”
“Apparently they do, since you're wrong this time.” Reimu humored the reporter with a hint of annoyance behind her words.
“I understand. I can see that I'm prying too much anyways, so I won't ask anymore.”
“Thank you.” Reimu's thanks sounded empty to me. Still, it seemed that Aya would finally lay off of me and her. They both looked at each other while drinking the contents of their glasses. I also took a small sip in hopes that that was the end of that.

If I told her about it, Auntie would laugh at me (at best); What happened next seemed to happen in slow motion.

“I suppose you won't mind this then?” Aya said clearly and distinctly. I felt that all eyes were upon her. She drank the rest of her drink. In what seemed like a literal flash (the speed of the action further enhanced by the sluggishness of everything else ), she came to me.

Loud whistling and hooting exploded around me as I tried to understand what was going on. I was disoriented and my eyes couldn't focus on what was directly in front of me. I felt like I was drinking again even though I knew that my glass was in my hand. The smell and taste of alcohol overwhelmed me. My eyes darted from side to side, and I caught glimpses of faces; the stoic gaze of Alice, a clearly amused Yukari, and I couldn't really tell how Reimu looked.

I started to register the weight of the body that was pressed up against me, and the accompanying warmth. I tried to say something, but found my tongue otherwise engaged. I struggled, trying to break away from Aya's sudden and unwelcome intrusion. Her arms wrapped around my back and her probing tongue reacted by swarming around with movements synchronized to my own. Her technique might have been enjoyable, if not for the shock and conflict that I felt. I surrendered more of my sense of reason than I realized, eventually coming to enjoy the interminable kiss. The sound of my beating heart filled my ears, almost completely muting out the world

I even forgot where I was. With an embellished smooching sound, Aya finally let go of me. She smiled at me, face mere centimeters my my own. Her arms were firmly wrapped across my back, and I found myself slowly drifting towards her own lips...

“Wow, what a smooch!” Suika yelled out the obvious. It was enough to make me realize what I was doing.

“What are you doing!?” I broke away easily and asked something very self-evident.
“Kissing you, of course.” There was no hesitation in her reply.
“Why?!” I felt myself burning up, probably looking completely red.
“I think I really like you.” She said.
“Even so, that's way too-”
“I know, it's forward of me. But with there being nothing between you and Reimu, I couldn't bear to wait another moment.”

Aya stole a look at Reimu.

“You're just using me, aren't you?” The realization evoked much anger within me. She was doing this to get that stupid story of hers. I could play along when it was something relatively benign, like I had originally with Suika, but this was too much. “What the hell is-”

“I'm going to kick you out if you get too out of control.” She cautioned the reporter. Reimu interrupted me before I could finish my thought. “The same goes for any one of you. If you mess up my shrine, I'm kicking you out.” Saying that she grabbed several empty glasses. And stood up. “And don't use so many glasses for drinking. They need to be cleaned at the end. So unless you're going to help, don't be so messy.”

Reimu left the room, with a look that didn't betray what she might have really been thinking.

“...”

All eyes were on me. Curiosity at how I would react, no doubt. The only one who didn't seem to have some sort of thought on the matter was Suika, who was gladly drinking more and smiling at me. She had something she wanted me to do. I could tell. If I waited somewhere alone, she would come and seek me out.

[] Tell Aya off
[] Leave
[] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24691
[X] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24692
[†] Go after Reimu

Love Aya but Tsun Reimu is MOE
>>No. 24693
[X] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24694
[] Go after Reimu

jealous Reimu~
>>No. 24695
[X] Kiss Aya agai
[X] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24696
File 124613034219.png - (357.81KB, 600x800, e5875a60615311c5bd5a9e3f189f9e63.png) [iqdb]
24696
[!/] Go after Reimu

Break through the Tsun coating to get to the gooey Dere core!
>>No. 24697
[X] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24698
[x] Tell Aya off
>>No. 24704
[X] Go after Reimu

If she doesn't feel like talking to Arc, (heck the only reason Aya's egging on Reimu is because of the lad), it'd be a good time for him to take care of another aspect of being a "bartender"; cleanly up the dishes/cups...
>>No. 24706
[X]Go after Reimu.

If Aya's just testing for a reaction, this might not be the best choice.
But hey, it'll hopefully get Arc away from Aya for now.
>>No. 24707
[X]Go after Reimu.
>>No. 24709
[x]Go after Reimu.

>>24706
Screw Aya, that's not what matters. If we don't go after Reimu, it'll make her feel like we aren't interested, and that's not good when she seems uncertain about her own feelings. Don't leave her to stew over this alone. Even if she doesn't want to talk, she should know that we do.
>>No. 24710
>>24709
I'm simply making an observation on the matter.
I voted to persue Reimu regardless, half to get Arc away from Aya and half to stay with Reimu.

I'm just concerned that this will be yet another desicion that bites us in the ass. Maybe I'm just paranoid this time around.
>>No. 24711
[x]Go after Reimu.
>>No. 24712
Telling Aya off takes no time at all. It feels great and will definitely strengthen your resolve when you eventually do tell Reimu that you were offended by Aya's advances, and if you ever had any interest in her, it's gone now.

[x] Tell Aya off: "Slow news day? Be sure when you write your story you note how intoxicated you were at the time of reporting."
[x] Go help Reimu wash the glasses.
- [x] Don't comment on what just happened unless she brings the matter up herself.

Reimu knows exactly what happened just now, and apparently she thinks well of you enough to assume that you do too. That's why she was careful not to reprimand you, despite her anger. This anger is not likely so much out of jealousy as it is from being publicly humiliated by a "guest" (Aya) in her own home.
>>No. 24713
>>24712
>Telling Aya off takes no time at all.
Unless she replies. Then you gotta counter yourself, since you can't do a good job of telling someone off if you let them get the last word in.
>>No. 24715
>>24713

Not really, all it takes to counter is "What's that you say? CAW CAW CAW?"

Immature but hey, she started it.
>>No. 24716
>>24715

You're assuming she's going to drop it once Arc insults her.
Yeah, that's going to help with a pushy, not to mention persistent, crow tengu.
>>No. 24717
[X] Go after Reimu
>>No. 24724
File 124646841569.jpg - (609.21KB, 700x800, f5c31e7469eb67a172ebd2ede82f729d.jpg) [iqdb]
24724
Lack of updates makes a wakimiko oni sad. ;_;
>>No. 24729
>>24724
I see no waki in that miko oni.
>>No. 24731
>>24724
You know... Miko miko Suika, let alone Suika in general, is generally portrayed as more cute than anything, but this is kind of hot.
>>No. 24732
File 124668092584.jpg - (147.99KB, 500x400, 15f732337182261be7e6808102330038.jpg) [iqdb]
24732
>>24731

That picture stirs my lions, if you know what I mean.
>>No. 24734
>if you know what I mean

I think you meant "loins".
>>No. 24735
>>24734
They're both things that we'd prefer he keeps caged up while around us.
>>No. 24737
File 124682908862.jpg - (462.46KB, 606x700, 47222c7d30da3ffa466a07cd12a244ea.jpg) [iqdb]
24737
Poor Reimu.
She has snapped due to lack of updates.
>>No. 24738
I'm not sure which moves slower, this place or 7chan

hioooooooooooo

Anywho, please come back anon, this was getting interesting ;_;

[x] go after Reimu
>>No. 24740
Sorry, I've been in quite desolate and remote places, moving about a lot, unable to properly write. There might be something in a day or less, but no real promises there as it depends both on my free time and access to the internet.

>>24737
Psychotic episode with sexy results? I approve.

>>24738
This place, I think.
>>No. 24741
Why do all the good writers usually have Internet issues?

I assume its because people who can actually write don't spend all day on their computers and are doing something consructive
>>No. 24742
>>24737

She got to vent that frustration some how, and one can only beat the crap out of certain opponents via danmaku for so long till there's some thing else more needed, more potent...
>>No. 24747
>>24741

Eurofags tend to have backwater Internets quality issue.
>>No. 24749
>>24747
It's just a few vacuum tubes to replace. That can't be too hard.
>>No. 24772
File 124710739792.jpg - (31.82KB, 522x432, TUBES.jpg) [iqdb]
24772
>>24749

I guess vacuum tubes are hard to come by when the Russians make them.
>>No. 24775
File 124716091063.jpg - (25.47KB, 300x300, glassblown.jpg) [iqdb]
24775
>>24772

They are being blown as I...

SHIT another just cracked...
>>No. 24794
File 124724381090.jpg - (136.93KB, 666x1000, rsdl.jpg) [iqdb]
24794
[x] Go after Reimu

I looked around the now silent room, trying to make out what the others were thinking. Despite having gotten scolded by Reimu, Aya still looked as lively and sharp as ever, showing me a smile so ambiguous that it appeared to be completely sly. I didn't feel like wasting any time with her. Not right now. And frankly, I didn't know if I ever wanted t o deal with her. I was afraid of what might happen. Of what one thing and another would lead to.

Heaven knew what Suika wanted; Auntie sometimes berated me for allowing myself to get swept along, so I'm sure she would praise my decision to cling to dependable factors. Like Reimu. Having been violated just now, I really didn't feel like risking getting violated (in perhaps another way) by the oni. She was drinking again, but I was sure she was keeping her eye on me.

I gave a silent shrug, my eyes passing over a stoic Yuakri and a chugging Marisa. Those two amiably exchanged a look, like those with shared experiences sometimes do. All remnants of the previous argument had evaporated into the night, with Nitori drinking quietly while sitting close to Marisa. I felt

Alice's gaze bore into the back of my skull as I quietly left. I felt her concentrated and dedicated gaze and was sure that she was very interested in what I was going to do.

No one said anything to stop me from leaving.

I encountered Reimu in the kitchen, finding her stubbornly scrubbing a beer-stained glass with misplaced determination.

“I should be doing that.” I said. “I was hired to take care of that sort of thing.” Well, I wasn't actually sure at this stage what it was that I was hired for. Suika didn't exactly spell out what she expected me to do, using me increasingly like a plaything; But it sounded like a nice and dependable-sounding thing to say.

“I'll do as I please in my own home.” Reimu barked, surprising me.
“...Sorry.” I couldn't think of anything else to say. I hadn't expected Reimu to snap at me. I might as well have stayed at the party, I thought in a slight panic. Still, I eventually concluded, I was here already. I stood silently, thinking that I should take it easy.

It felt a bit awkward standing around doing nothing, I couldn't tell what Reimu was thinking by looking at the back of her head. Her scrubbing continued with varying degrees of intensity.

“...You may as well help.” My patience was rewarded by an eventual invitation to join her. I quietly moved next to her, grabbed a glass and got to cleaning. Considering that these had been dirtied only a few hours ago, they sure had stubborn stains and sticky spots.

“That's enough.”
“We're nearly finished though.”
“With this batch.” She observed. “There's a lot more back there.”
“Should I go get them then?”
“Maybe later.” She sighed, her ribbon shaking with a quick movement of her head. I didn't say anything, even in my slightly-impaired state I realized that that would be the best thing. “Doesn't it bother you?”
“Bother me? Yeah, it does.” I guessed what she was talking about. “It bothers me plenty.”
“Doesn't seem so. You left without doing anything.”
“I came after you.”
“How noble.” I wasn't sure where her irritation was coming from. Her acidic words felt like a directionless rant.
“Hey,” I tried to justify myself, “I get the feeling that if I had stayed and yelled, gotten mad, thrown a fit, it might have made me feel better, but it wasn't going to change anything. You know that's true, right? Those people do whatever the hell it is that they want to do.”
“Unless you stop them.”
“I've been pinned down by a little girl and forced to do as she pleased several times by now. It makes me feel frustrated and mad at myself, more than just at her I think. She might be an exception, but it really doesn't feel like I could do anything against any of you here.”

Unless you used magic. A voice elegantly put the alternative into the conscious part of my thoughts. Thoughts of the hauntingly captivating magician and her dazzling display surfaced. It was a solution, but not one that I felt was quite possible.

“...I followed you because it seemed like the most reasonable option.” I said with a little bit more self-pity than I had intended to show.
“You could at least make an effort. Or do you want to be abused for the rest of your life? Youkai are merciless.”
“Yeah, so I'm told. But despite it all, I don't see you doing anything for yourself either other than letting all of this happen in the first place.” My words were thorny due to my frustration, but I couldn't help it.
“If I really wanted them gone, they would be gone.” She told me calmly enough. “And if they piss me off, they will be gone. But it's saving me a lot of future effort by letting them be right now.”
“Couldn't I just claim the same thing then? That feels like a poor self-delusion.”
“You have more backbone than you let show at first, you know.”
“I understand having to compromise in order to live.” I already did with my job with auntie and most of my recent life, “But it doesn't mean that inside I don't think differently from what I do. Given the chance, I'd change things.” If I had the means, really. Otherwise it'll feel like I'm wasting away, just taking orders.

“Now that sounds like a self-delusion. You may as well be waiting for everyone to hand you everything on a platter.” She laughed. “But whatever, you still have an okay attitude I guess.”
“I”m glad that my shrine maiden thinks so.” I let out a sigh of my own, smiling weakly at her.
“Your shrine maiden?” She looked at me like she didn't seem to understand. Her face looked up at mine, probably searching for a hidden meaning in my words.
“Well, yeah.” I explained. “You did say that this was the village's shrine, or something to that effect, right? Then that means that you're my shrine maiden. Listening what you have to say and trusting you is only natural.” By that logic, auntie would have me bow and be extra polite to Reimu every time we spoke, but I didn't mention that.
“Oh, I see.” She told me confidently with an approving nod of her head, “You're absolutely right in thinking like that. Trusting me definitely is the right thing to do.”

Reimu seemed about ready to head back to the party now. And I felt better for some reason as well. I could see myself even forgiving the journalist. Well, I couldn't say that she hurt me or anything, it actually felt quite nice, if it weren't for the whole forcing and junk. Luckily my thoughts were interrupted by Reimu before they went to a bad place.

“What would you do if one of these youkai decided to show their true nature?” She posed. I wasn't sure if she was pulling my leg or being deadly serious.
“What do you mean?”
“There's plenty that they can do. And they're ruthless when it comes to their interests and selfish wants. Threat of force isn't enough to stop them eventually.”
“What could I do?” I asked, thinking to how just recently a normal-looking girl like Alice had basically done as she pleased with me. Appearances really were deceiving.
“A lot of things. Even if you feel like there's nothing you can do, there's always something you can do. I'm curious to hear what you'd do.”

I gave it some thought, just in case she was being serious.

[] Ask for my shrine maiden's help
[] Look for an alternative to conflict
[] Protect my shrine maiden
[] Other
>>No. 24795
[X] Protect my shrine maiden.
>>No. 24797
[X] Ask for my shrine maiden's help

to be honest I didn't like any of the options, but I can't think of any for [other] because i'm dumb
>>No. 24798
[X] Protect my shrine maiden.
[x]"Even if it's useless, I'd be a failure as a man to do anything but."
>>No. 24800
[x] Look for an alternative to conflict
>>No. 24801
[x] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[x] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
[x] And if it comes down to it, you'll kick and spit and scream and claw their eyes out. You'll make them suffer for every inch they take, if only so that even after they kill you, you'll have burned the negative association so deeply into their minds that they'll never be interested in doing it again to someone else.
>>No. 24802
[x] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[x] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
[x] And if it comes down to it, you'll kick and spit and scream and claw their eyes out. You'll make them suffer for every inch they take, if only so that even after they kill you, you'll have burned the negative association so deeply into their minds that they'll never be interested in doing it again to someone else.
>>No. 24809
[~] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[z] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
[e] And if it comes down to it, you'll kick and spit and scream and claw their eyes out. You'll make them suffer for every inch they take, if only so that even after they kill you, you'll have burned the negative association so deeply into their minds that they'll never be interested in doing it again to someone else.

>>24798
Shirou logic is retarded.
>>No. 24810
[x] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[x] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
third one is far too cheesy for my liking
>>No. 24812
[x] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[x] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
[x] And if it comes down to it, you'll kick and spit and scream and claw their eyes out. You'll make them suffer for every inch they take, if only so that even after they kill you, you'll have burned the negative association so deeply into their minds that they'll never be interested in doing it again to someone else.

>>24810
So you wouldn't do anything if the first two weren't possible?
>>No. 24813
>>24650

[!/] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[!/] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
>>No. 24817
[x] Protect my shrine maiden
>>No. 24819
[X] Ask for my shrine maiden's help
>>No. 24821
[X] Look for an alternative to conflict
>>No. 24824
>>24812
>So you wouldn't do anything if the first two weren't possible?

Some people are so meek and ineffectual that they wouldn't even do that. In such a case, death would honestly be a welcome alternative to conflict. The meaning of the idiom 'a coward dies a thousand deaths' is lost on said persons--this is how far removed from fear of their own survival they are. In a way, it is a strength, since they will endure just about anything life throws at them, as long as they are protected from public embarrassment.

Writefag, this update was worth the extra amount of time it took you to write, even if not all your readers thought it was worth the same amount of consideration.
>>No. 25011
>>24824
>Writefag, this update was worth the extra amount of time it took you to write

I concur
>>No. 25012
[x] First, look for an alternative to conflict. Almost anything other than death is acceptable.
[x] Second, go to other humans for help. Mass action is at times humanity's only saving grace.
[x] And if it comes down to it, you'll kick and spit and scream and claw their eyes out. You'll make them suffer for every inch they take, if only so that even after they kill you, you'll have burned the negative association so deeply into their minds that they'll never be interested in doing it again to someone else.
[x] "...though I suppose I could always try turning them into a newt."

We can't tell if she's joking or serious, so it might be best to cover both angles.
>>No. 25013
“I'd look for an alternative to conflict first, there's always another way.”
“Perhaps when dealing with humans, with a feral beast it's different.”
“Now you're just sounding like my dearly departed grandmother.” She would rant incessantly about dangerous monsters and how they were a threat to us. She was quite serious about Youkai. She claimed that her own grandparents used to hunt youkai. Then again she claimed she was as beautiful as a goddess in her younger days. So she wasn't the most reliable of sources. “If I”m dealing with one of those people over there,” I pointed in the general direction of the party, “I'm sure I can deal with them. No matter how determined they may seem.”

I conveniently tried not to think about the incidents with Suika and Alice. Already, for argument's sake, I was prepared to simply brush them off as 'isolated surprise situations'. Just like with Aya.

“I hope that you can.” Reimu sounded sincere. “But-”

Her look hardened and she stepped close to me, almost pinning me against the storage cabinet.

“No matter how sure you may feel, there's always the possibility that you'll fall short.”
“In that case, I'll simply go and get help. If the villagers unite in order to harvest or prepare for winter, I don't see why they wouldn't help me against monsters.”
“They would help you, wouldn't they? It's what we humans do best, isn't it?” She agreed with me, but her still set look told me that it might not be the case. “And you would probably be well if it was a conflict on a large scale.”
“But?” I was uncomfortable with having her so close to me. It might have been enjoyable under other circumstances, but not so soon after all that had happened that evening.
“We just saw what happened when something like a youkai wants to do something to someone else impulsively, didn't we?”
“...Yeah.” It was true. There was no way I could have avoided Aya I thought.
“Even if you fought back, with weapons or even with tooth and nail well... Let me just put it this way; It doesn't look like you're even able to resist something that a human would do.” She emphasized the word 'human', bringing herself closer to my face. There was nothing stopping her from kissing me if she wanted to. I felt like my heart had stopped beating along with my lack of breath. I closed my eyes.

She didn't though.

“It really doesn't matter in the end.” Reimu pushed herself away, taking several steps towards the door. I looked at her, not sure what to think. She changed tone completely, sounding chipper than I had ever heard her be. “I think that I've had more to drink than I thought. I'm saying stupid things needlessly. Sorry about that.”

She smiled, and made a gesture indicating like the alcohol had gone to her head.

“I...” Was going to say something. But I couldn't think of what to say. It didn't matter, because Reimu already had something she wanted to say.

“We've been gone for a bit now, we should go back. You have a job to do, after all, and I've got to keep an eye on my shrine.” She motioned for me to come and walked happily back to the party.

I couldn't do anything else but just follow.

“Oh hey, it's you guys!” Suika greeted us cheerfully, as if she hadn't seen us in ages. “Good timing! I was just about to send someone for you. We all got talking here and decided upon something.”

She didn't wait for a reaction from either of you.

“So yeah, in the Ultimate Battle of Life and Death for the Alcoholic Ambrosia raging across the whole of Gensokyo involving awesome oni, sexy witches,” She winks at Marisa who returns a thumbs up, “and I could go on, but time is short...”

“We've decided to speed things up, that's what she's saying.” Nitori spoke up, looking helpful.

“And what does that even mean?” Reimu asked, still sounding friendly.
“Quite simple, my dear Reimu.” Suika spoke again. She put down her glass of booze. “A single last round, knockout style to determine the winner.”
“Let me guess – you versus us?” She looked at Suika and Yukari then at me.
“Correct! The others agree, don't you?”

Everyone nodded. Marisa spoke out, holding a newly acquired bag of goodies, “They made me an offer I couldn't refuse. These are simply delicious.”

...Where in the hell did they get that many mushrooms that quickly?

In any case, for drastically different reasons, each person present had agreed to forfeit. That left just Suika and Yukari against Reimu and I.

“You okay with that?” Suika asked.
“Sounds interesting. I was getting tired of all of these pointless games anyways.” Reimu answered for us. “We'll take you on.”
“It's settled then. Let's get this started then.”

“So... what are we going to do?” Someone had to ask, so I did.
“Thought you'd never ask.” Suika beamed. The happier she looked, the more my heart sank. This wasn't going to be a walk in the park. “We've been drinking right? And it's a party, right? Then there's something sorely missing. And no, it's not ghost stories. Those are boring. Well, not always.” She went into a tangent. “When she's around, it's good. Being afraid of stories of your own kind is wicked funny.” She came back. “So, uh, the thing that's missing is a good old game of guts and honesty. One that is a time-honored tradition of any good party.”
“Get to it.” Reimu showed a bit of impatience. I couldn't blame her, rambling oni are not fun.

Basically, it was truth or dare. One team would ask the team to do something, or to tell the truth about something. But the thing was that if the other team did it, they would have to do the same thing themselves. And then the other team would get a chance to ask. And so forth until one of the teams was unable to do or say something. I felt apprehensive about it. But Reimu didn't seem to mind.

“We'll begin then.” Yukari spoke, her voice even. Everyone else moved to the sidelines as we sat opposite each other on the table. “Seeing that you're the underdog, you get to go first.”

“Suits us fine.” Reimu replied. She told me that she would go first, and then I would have a chance when it next our turn. “I'll start with a dare; I dare you to stop drinking during this game.”

There was a buzz of voices in the room. Suika smiled. “Okay. Bottles down.” She placed her gourd to her left. Yukari didn't seem to care either. “You have to do the same.”
“Not a problem.” Reimu and I hadn't been drinking right then, so we were unaffected. I wondered if maybe she was trying to get to Suika, thus making her lose. That might just work.
“Alright. So its our turn.” Suika fired a counter-barrage, “I dare you not to stop drinking during this game. At least a drink per question.”
“You can't do that.” I protested. “It contradicts the previous dare.”
“Each round is a round unto itself.” Yukari claimed. “The past doesn't count.”
“Yeah, just ask the judge.” Suika pointed at the self-appointed judge. Marisa was in the middle of drinking, looking particularly clumsy at it.

“I'll allow it.” She mumbled before getting back to her drink.

“That settles it.” Suika poured a drink for us. “Drink.”

I had no alternative but to drink. Reimu didn't say anything, so I wondered if she had foreseen this.

They, of course, had no problem in following on the dare.

It was my turn to ask.

[] Truth: Why they want to win
[] Dare: Toss out full bottles of alcohol
[] Other
>>No. 25014
[x] Dare: Toss out all the alcohol in the shrine.

Suika's gourd is bottomless, it's an impossible task.
>>No. 25015
[X] Dare: Toss out all the alcohol in the shrine.

Instant Knock Out.
>>No. 25016
[x] Dare: Toss out all the alcohol in the shrine.

Not an impossible task, since Suika's flask has a stopper, and simply removing it from the shrine would fulfill the conditions. It is one hell of a power play though, as it negates their last dare and makes things decidedly un-fun for the audience.
>>No. 25018
[X] Dare: Toss out full bottles of alcohol

I don't think throwing it all out would be a good idea, especially since the prize is alcohol itself and we don't want everyone at the party to hate the guy
>>No. 25019
[X] Dare: Toss out full bottles of alcohol
>>No. 25020
This needs a good write-in.
>>No. 25021
No matter how this goes, I'm already predicting the "make out with your partner" dare.
>>No. 25022
>>25018

It's an absolute despair gambit. Either they stay in the game, but there is no prize for anyone, or they forfeit the prize to the opposing team.
>>No. 25025
File 124735276119.jpg - (35.67KB, 560x420, 12459860589.jpg) [iqdb]
25025
>>25021

Seven Minutes in Heaven!
>>No. 25027
>I don't think throwing it all out would be a good idea, especially since the prize is alcohol itself and we don't want everyone at the party to hate the guy

Considering the real test is whether he has a spine or not, it'd be terrible if he were to lose because simply because the thought of an unavoidable conflict was too much for him to bear. Especially after all those assertions he made in the kitchen; I'd be more worried about whether he'd even be able to look Reimu straight in the eye if he did.

Besides, Marisa is likely to quash the dare before it gets far enough as to disrupt her current activity, namely drinking.
>>No. 25029
[x] Dare: Toss out all the alcohol in the shrine.
>>No. 25030
>>25018

Under that logic, "full bottles" would include the prize as well.
>>No. 25031
>>25030
No it wouldn't.
"Throw out full bottles of alcohol" does not say throw out EVERY full bottle of alcohol. It just says throw some out (bottles, so at least 2). That is intended to be difficult for Suika (or just about anyone here, but especially Suika) to do, so she has to make a hard choice between winning the game and not wasting alcohol. The "Throw out the prize/every bottle (including the prize)" makes it so that their team CANNOT win the prize. Since Suika probably wouldn't want the prize to go to waste, or potentially all of the other alcohol, she'd likely concede. It's a real dick move though.
>>No. 25032
[+] Dare: Toss out full bottles of alcohol
>>No. 25036
Dere: tsun her yan.
>>No. 25043
Writing now. That seemed like a really slow weekend, didn't it?
>>No. 25046
File 124753117122.jpg - (190.80KB, 600x600, fbfb08b3c311aeae0edc76529a4c1284.jpg) [iqdb]
25046
>>25036

Do not know if want...
>>No. 25047
“I've got something.” I smiled. “I dare you to throw out all of the bottles of alcohol in the shrine.”

There was something of a collective gasp in the room.

“That's-” Suika was about to about to answer when the judge weighed in violently.
“RE-JECT-ED!” Marisa yelled and stood up. “Not only would that entail sacrificing the well-being of everyone present, but it would as well be contrary to the rules. Since you would have nothing to do when you have to repeat the dare, making it easy for you. Besides, the prize is alcohol as well, not having that would null the contest.”
“Yeah, that's right.” A couple of spectators agreed.

“Tsk. Fine.” I rolled my eyes. “How about just tossing out a couple then?”
“No good!” Judge Marisa determined with a grand sweep of her arms. “All of the alcohol here is meant for party consumption purposes, it would defeat the spirit of the competitions.”
“Not being able to use the dare I want compromises my strategy.” I observed.
“You're right, but we can still amend it so that it works.” The judge offers her idea, “Instead of throwing away the bottles, the dare will be changed to giving away whatever drinks would be allocated to them to the others present.” A populist cheer arose from the others. Marisa thanked them. “This only affects would-be future drinks, not the current dare of drinking once per round.”

I had to settle for that. Reimu urged me to, apparently I wasn't going to get a better deal. I drank my share this round, noting that my dare did seem to affect Suika, she seemed upset at giving up any amount of alcohol.

It was Yukari's turn, and she smiled at me. Instinct told me that she was probably the one I should worry more about on that team. Reimu didn't seem to mind, keeping her expression the same as the other team spoke.

“I think I have something appropriate.” She took her time to speak in a level voice. “This game doesn't have to be wholly about alcohol. Therefore I pose the following dare: I dare you to stay in close proximity to your partner. In fact, I encourage you to lean on each other.” She smiled.

“That's not a problem.” Reimu replied, looking just the tiniest bit wary, I thought. She scooted over to me and pressed against me. It felt weird having her skin against mine, but I have to admit, it wasn't at all unwelcome. Suika and Yukari had no problem doing the same, so I wondered what exactly was the point of that one.

“My turn, correct?” Reimu asked after drinking her fill for the round.
“Correct.” Judge Marisa was almost slurring at this point. There was no way someone as young as her could drink that much that fast.
“Then, I want to ask a truth now; what do you hope to accomplish with this contest?” Reimu asked something which even I knew was pointless. Still, it had to be asked.

“Have fun and see interesting things! That's what I want.” Suika answered earnestly. In her case, it was the truth. Undoubtedly.
“I wish to see just how far this competition will go. To me its interesting just seeing how things progress, dear Reimu. I'm a simple observer.” Yukari answered. “I don't care if I win or lose.”

So much for learning anything new.

“I want to just get this over with.” I said. I didn't care if I won or lost really. I had no long-term goal here.
“I just want to keep things civil.” Reimu smiled, not elaborating further on her objectives.

And we drank some more.

“Alright! I've got something!” Suika exclaimed excitedly. “New dare!” I felt Reimu emit a quiet sigh. “Ready for this one? I got the inspiration from it from earlier. I want Arc here to gimmie big wet one. It looked like fun!”

Is that what this was going to come down to?

“Reimu can kiss Yukari here, so we're even.”
“I certainly don't mind.” The smiling blond assented.

“Wait a moment!” The lush judge intervened. “I've been talking to my tribunal of peers here and they think that there might be a better solution for this one.” She explained, looking like a golden, red, and blue beacon of awkwardness. “I think that if one side gets to choose who to kiss, it's only fair that the other side gets to choose as well. Therefore it is up to the other team to decide who will be kissing whom. The tribunal has spoken.”
“Please take your time.” Self-appointed Judge Aya added.

“So?” Reimu whispered to me. “What do you think?”
“I'm not sure. What do you think.”
“Whatever you want to do is fine. I don't care much for winning. Then again, pushy individuals get on my nerves.”
“So it's my call.”
“Sure, why not?”

I wondered if that meant that I could kiss her as well. That certainly seemed to be the implication that the tribunal was getting at. What with their amused gazes amidst untold amounts of alcohol. I was feeling a bit more paranoid than usual, I felt, having drank much more than I ever would so quickly. I had mixed feelings about this.

[] Back down
[] Kiss Suika; have Reimu kiss Yukari
[] Kiss Suika; then Yukari
[] Kiss Suika; then Reimu
>>No. 25048
[X] Kiss Suika; then Reimu.

Oh yes, we may have to endure some teasing, but this will compromise part of their strategy. They're probably banking on us either backing down from this, or choosing Yukari, then using it to needle at Reimu.

Hope Yukari doesn't take this as a slight.
>>No. 25049
File 124753667573.jpg - (13.70KB, 278x350, fag.jpg) [iqdb]
25049
[x] all
>>No. 25050
[x] Kiss Suika; then Reimu

theres something at the back of my mind that makes me think this choice is bad but I can't put my finger on it
>>No. 25051
[x] all

TOTAL. VICTORY.
>>No. 25052
[+] Kiss Suika; have Reimu kiss Yukari
Let's just play it straight; we don't have to think outside of the box with with every response. Conserving wit might be a good thing if we can expend a lot at a more crucial juncture.
Also, alcohol-induced confusion.
>>No. 25053
[x] Kiss Suika; have Reimu kiss Yukari

It is not specified where or how to kiss, so this should be easy.
>>No. 25054
[x] Kiss Suika; have Reimu kiss Yukari
>>No. 25055
>>25053

Banking on this thought.

[x] Kiss Suika; have Reimu kiss Yukari
>>No. 25056
File 124754301393.png - (273.36KB, 384x512, 2d5ed8dc2b8c0688cb8948d577b4a541.png) [iqdb]
25056
[!/] Kiss Yukari; have Reimu kiss Suika

Kiss her other hand.
Piss in the tide option.
>>No. 25057
[X] Kiss Suika; then Reimu but longer and deeper.
>>No. 25058
>>25053
Genius, except that the next dare will be designed to prevent any clever diversions.
>>No. 25059
[x] Kiss Suika; then Reimu.
>>No. 25060
[X] Kiss Suika; then Reimu
>>No. 25061
>“I think that if one side gets to choose who to kiss, it's only fair that the other side gets to choose as well. Therefore it is up to the other team to decide who will be kissing whom. The tribunal has spoken.”

Rather than making them choose, then:

[x] Kiss Suika; then Reimu.
[x] As counter-dare you choose for Suika and Yukari to kiss every youkai at the party.

You're the only one who gets to kiss Reimu. Suika and Yukari have to kiss each other, Alice, Aya, Natori, etc. Marisa gets no play at all, but is too busy laughing her ass off to care.
>>No. 25063
[x] Kiss Suika; then Reimu.
[x] As counter-dare you choose for Suika and Yukari to kiss every youkai at the party.
>>No. 25064
[X]Kiss Suika; then Reimu
[X]As counter-dare you choose to have Suika and Yukari to kiss every yokai at the party.

I like this option.
Don't think eiher of them would back down, especially not Suika.
>>No. 25066
[x] Kiss Suika; then Reimu

Suika stared at me with delight as I closed in on her. Due to the previous round's resolution, Reimu had to accompany me, straying only a few centimeters from me. I tried not to look at her, instead focusing on the oni's wide grin.

She didn't wait for me to make the first move, grabbing my head and violently crashing my lips against hers. It wasn't so much a kiss as it was a slightly painful bump. A loud smooch sound came from between us, and just as quickly and violently as it had begun, it ended. “That was fun!” Suika exclaimed, getting up to toast herself. “I should kiss people more often.”

...that wasn't really a proper kiss though. And I wasn't sure if I was lucky or not. As Suika spoke triumphantly, Aya tried to explain that what she had done was only vaguely related to what she did with me. Her words naturally fell on deaf ears.

“Who gets the next kiss?” Yukari asked, smiling deviously. I could have sworn I saw her lick her lips.
“I'll be kissing Reimu.” I said meekly. No doubt everyone overheard me, as they all seemed to look at me. I felt myself blushing. “This is okay, right?” I whispered to Reimu.

I quickly turned my head and planted a kiss on her cheek without looking. I was too red to even contemplate looking directly at her.

“Hey, that's not a kiss!” Suika protested loudly. “It has to be on the lips!”
“There was no such rule.” Reimu spoke for me, sounding level-headed.
“The tribunal has declared that-”
“The tribunal won't declare anything.” Reimu interrupted. “You can't and won't retroactively change rules.”

Her tone was serious enough for everyone to heed her words.

“Next round then.” I spoke quietly, still not looking at Reimu. It was my turn. Whatever I said would come back at me. At this point, I knew I was losing control of myself, and couldn't hold myself accountable for my actions. The world was more than hazy, if I were standing, it would be spinning. And still I had to drink more this round. I wasn't sure what I would do if I drank more.

I looked up at the other team. Suika smacked her lips and showed me a smile, while Yukari flashed a knowing smile. She was scary. Pretty, quiet, and nice. But scary. It was the same look that auntie gave me whenever she...

“It's your turn Arc.” Reimu reminded me, sounding a bit impatient. How could this girl hold her liquor better than I could? It was a mystery. A nice and big mystery. That smelled as nice as she did. Heh.

[] Dare: Kiss everyone!
[] Truth: “Do you guys think I'm a good boy?”
[] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
[] Suika has big horns
>>No. 25067
[X] Anemia option
>>No. 25068
[x] Suika has big horns
>>No. 25069
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
>>No. 25070
[X] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep

A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.
>>No. 25071
[x] Suika has big horns
>>No. 25072
>Truth: “Do you guys think I'm a good boy?”

We're not Sanae.

>Suika has big horns

We're drunk, not stoned.

>Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep

Tempting, so very tempting.

[X] Dare: Kiss everyone!

Fun for the whole family.
>>No. 25073
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
>>No. 25075
[X]Dare: Kiss everyone!

Now we just need to get Arc so drunk off his ass afterwards that he'll barely remember any of this in the morning.
>>No. 25076
and hope that Reimu forgets all of it as well?
>>No. 25078
[X] Dare: Kiss everyone!
>>No. 25081
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep

We lose, but we win!
>>No. 25082
[x] Suika has big horns

You guys think too small
>>No. 25084
[!/] Suika has big horns

BIG SWING
BIG SWING
>>No. 25085
>>25084
giant
>>No. 25087
[X] Suika has big horns

RIP AND TEAR
RIP AND TEAR YOUR HORNS
>>No. 25088
[x] Suika has big horns

this means she is huge.
>>No. 25090
[x] Comfy shrine maiden - Sleep
>>No. 25091
File 124762290656.jpg - (611.92KB, 600x848, 4525116.jpg) [iqdb]
25091
[x] Suika has big horns

I don't know what this does, probably.
>>No. 25094
[X] Dare: Kiss everyone!
>>No. 25095
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
>>No. 25096
[+] Suika has big horns
>>No. 25097
Whoa, what prompted the sudden surge in votes? There seems like there are way more than usual.
>>No. 25098
[X] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
>>No. 25099
>>25097
I guess everyone just her horns.
>>No. 25100
File 124770332868.png - (644.69KB, 1280x1024, 1247521422394.png) [iqdb]
25100
>>25097

BIG SWING
BIG SWING
>>No. 25101
[X] Comfy shrine maiden; Sleep
>>No. 25102
[x] Yawn.
[x] Dare: "Okay. Pretend you're caring for a child who cannot sleep, and you need to sing him a lullaby to do it, but with one stipulation: It can't be one a human child could already have heard."
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; sleep
- [x] Don't let them rouse you easily--enchant yourself to sleep for however much you think you need.

I think this is the best prize we could hope to win. Graceful acquiescence, while making sure we have the last word. Reimu pillow. Suika revealing information about her culture that she normally keeps mum about. Yukari looking on the scene with a smile. Suika gets her alcohol, and Yukari probably won't even bother to take her share. No more dealing with Alice tonight. We wake up late in the afternoon, Reimu having moved us into a bedroll, and all the other stragglers long gone.
>>No. 25104
[x] Yawn.
[x] Dare: "Okay. Pretend you're caring for a child who cannot sleep, and you need to sing him a lullaby to do it, but with one stipulation: It can't be one a human child could already have heard."
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; sleep
- [x] Don't let them rouse you easily--enchant yourself to sleep for however much you think you need.
>>No. 25105
[x] Yawn.
[x] Dare: "Okay. Pretend you're caring for a child who cannot sleep, and you need to sing him a lullaby to do it, but with one stipulation: It can't be one a human child could already have heard."
[x] Comfy shrine maiden; sleep
- [x] Don't let them rouse you easily--enchant yourself to sleep for however much you think you need.
>>No. 25113
[d] Yawn.
[a] Dare: "Okay. Pretend you're caring for a child who cannot sleep, and you need to sing him a lullaby to do it, but with one stipulation: It can't be one a human child could already have heard."
[z] Comfy shrine maiden; sleep
- [e] Don't let them rouse you easily--enchant yourself to sleep for however much you think you need.
>>No. 25114
It's been called for a while. So there's no need to vote anymore. I've just been away and busy or not in the right mood to write and finish.
>>No. 25115
>>25114

hooray!
>>No. 25120
File 124787485741.jpg - (210.78KB, 800x1000, shsr.jpg) [iqdb]
25120
I may or may not have said anything clever. Having a little bit more to drink, I got up and walked over to Suika, telling her my dare. She smiled and started to recite whatever it was I had asked her to when I slumped in front of her. I dangled my arms around her horns, stroking them gently.

“Hey, that tickles!” She claimed, highly amused at my decision.
“Can you even feel what he's doing?” Reimu asked. “No, more importantly, what are you doing, Arc?”

Suika was like a bull. Her large horns were funny. I played and played, not letting anything get in my way. Not that anyone minded. I think. There was something about drinking more, so I did. Nice, aged drinks really added to the experience. I felt like I was really part of the group, having as much fun as I wanted to.

...

An annoying light disturbed me. I opened my eyes, trying to swat away the brightness with a free arm. I was just trying to rest a bit. Couldn't they leave me alone?

“Darn it...” Stupid light wouldn't go away. “I'm just resting my eyes a bit, leave me alone, ok?” I heard myself slur the words to an almost incomprehensible level.

“You'll have plenty of time to rest when you're dead. By the looks of it, that time might be coming soon.” The light intensified as I tried to focus my eyes on something.
“Oh hey, it's the pretty lady.”
“Pretty lady? While your praise is justly warranted, I cannot help but feel that it would be better delivered were you in a better situation, boy.” Mima spoke, her face hovering just within my field of vision.
“But you're the cool and awesome magic lady.” I spoke, feeling confused. Where was that damn light coming from? It hurt my brain.
“I had wondered what had happened.” She spoke, ignoring whatever stupid things I periodically said. “It does seem a shame to see potential in the form of eagerness and understanding squandered. But, at the same time, it does not necessarily seem as such. Perhaps the indolent agents in this pile of flesh and sweat are more worthy of attention.”

“Shaddup!” An equally disoriented and surely more exhausted young magician protested from the bottom of the pile. It felt everyone shift around me, adding pressure to my pinned limbs. She obviously didn't stay awake long enough to even see the target of her complaint; I heard as much snoring as I had earlier.

“Lovely.” She showed a constrained smile, obviously not pleased about something. I tried looking around, my senses feeling like dull parodies of the usual thing. Alice was there. Staring at me. Or the pile. She sat in a corner looking in my direction unabashedly. “She cannot see what she does not wish to see.” Mima commented, looking at her as well. “As a source of power, I believe she would do quite nicely. Not as well as I, of course, but suitable sources are hard to come by. There's the other, lying just below you in fact, but curtailing that enthusiasm and translating it into power is another issue. The choice between the sources is one between finesse and raw power.”

“I don't understand what you're talking about.” I shook my head, an action which hurt a lot. “Could I see your majestic magic again?”
“Perhaps in due time, boy.” She smiled. “It wasn't the right time now for everything. Or so it would seem. I would have known otherwise. Things would have moved ahead, as I wanted them to.”
“I don't understand at all...”
“Hush now. It's not necessary that you remember, but it is important that you don't forget. And I'll make sure that you don't forget.”

The light that pierced my brain stopped hurting me. Instead, a warm feeling enveloped my whole. I couldn't help but close my eyes with a smile, as Mima smiled at me with a regal, yet motherly, look spread across her face.

“I'm sorry to do this, especially since you have such a peaceful look on your face...”

Before I could open my mouth and ask what it was that she was going to do, I felt my air supply cut off.

“Geh!” My heart started beating fast as I looked to breath with certain desperation.
“Oh!” A surprised Reimu let go of my nose immediately.
“Huuuuu-” I breathed in as best I could, relieved at the prospect of having air.

“Sorry about that. I didn't know how else to wake you.”
“I-” ...tried to speak. It felt like a hammer was constantly smashing against an anvil in my head. I sat up, and almost collapsed back down.
“You don't look so good.”
“Head...” I mumbled, clutching my forehead with my hand. “Don't speak so... loudly.”
“Sorry.” Reimu whispered. It felt like a nail on a chalkboard though. “It's afternoon. The shrine needs to be cleaned up.”
“I'll get right to it.”
“Doubtful. But I'd appreciate it if you just got up. You're in the way of cleaning.”
“Huh?”

I looked around in a daze. Bottles were sprawled around me. Loud snoring came from my left. Marisa. She clutched her hat stubbornly, covering her face with it. She was the only one I could see.

“Suika fell asleep in the bath after I kicked her out of here.”
“Oh, I see.”
“Everyone else left already.”
“Oh, ok.”
“Well, except her. But she said she would be in the kitchen, making food. Should be some for you.” Reimu started to kick me out. “Gather your wits. Help me when you're able.” She grumbled, implying sooner rather than later.

I stood in the corridor after a few moments, not even sure how I had gotten there. I was covering my eyes, feeling that every ray of sunlight was my enemy.

[] Food
[] Bath
[] More sleep
>>No. 25121
[X] Food.

Fill that stomach, get your bearings.
>>No. 25122
[x]"So Reimu... did we win?"
[x]Bath
>>No. 25123
[X] Food

You're gonna work up a sweat anyways cleaning, may as well eat before relaxing
>>No. 25124
File 124788308752.gif - (103.21KB, 600x600, 113ba05da6e0f42dcbf2af530e4092e4.gif) [iqdb]
25124
[!/] Food

Feels good to have gotten a hornjob option.
>>No. 25125
[~] Food.
[z] "So... did we win?"
[e] Bath.
>>No. 25128
Despite the lack of votes, I'm holding back the urge to play Dark Forces and writing anyways.
>>No. 25129
[x] Food

“...Hey did we win?” I grumbled loudly before leaving. My answer was silence, as I felt that the shrine maiden purposefully ignored my question. Then again, my notion of time was poor at best. I left because of the intense throbbing of my skull.

Drag. Shuffle. Drag. One foot follows the other. Slowly but surely.

I made my way to the kitchen, walking like a puppet with broken strings. The delicious smell of food made my stomach rumble from a distance. By the time I reached the door, I was practically drooling all over the place.

I was welcomed by more than just a nice nutritious meal. Standing over the stove, minding a would-be hotcake stood Alice. She looked as unexcited and composed as ever, her hands moving every once in a while to deal with the batter. She didn't look at me, focusing almost exclusively on the food, but I saw from a slight movement of her shoulders that she realized that I was there.

Well, whatever.

I wasn't in the mood to talk anyways. The sizzling of batter was loud enough to bother me. In fact, it was loud enough to almost drown out her words to me. “Help yourself.”

A drink of cool water would usually be a very plain thing to have, but right now the flavorless water revitalized my whole. And that was before digging into the pile of flat cakes. They were light and fluffy and warm. Most importantly, they didn't upset my violent stomach. I ate quietly, dedicating most of my energies to simply getting the meal down.

It was only when I finished a whole stack by myself that I noticed that I was being stared at. I'm normally too self-conscious to stay quiet. This was no exception.

“They were really good. Thank you very much.”
“...”
“I wouldn't mind having these all the time. Really.”

The throbbing in my head was still intense, but it felt like it could actually start subsiding any time soon.

“How was it?”
“...I told you, they were really good.” I reiterated my position on the pancakes.
“Close proximity with her.” She clarified her meaning with a monotone.
“Hm? What?”
“I saw.”

I knew what she was talking about. My head made my immediate answers lean towards the curt, but the aftertaste of the pancakes tempered it into something a little more polite.

[] “I guess I did, not that I remember anything.”
[] “I don't care about her enough to have enjoyed it.”
[] “If I knew where I was, I would have gotten far away from her.”
[] “Would you have rather it had been you?”
>>No. 25130
[X]"I can't remember much of what happened last night thanks to my getting so drunk, so I really can't say one way or the other."
>>No. 25131
[X] "I'm sorry. I was drunk, and I'm out of it. I think I know who you mean, but..."
[X] Oh gods. Head pain. Deep breath.
[X] "... being specific would help a lot."
-[X] If she is talking about Mima, then... it was really nice. Mima is nice.
[X] "Being close to people is always nice, though."
[X] "Would you have rather it had been you?"

Frankly, I wouldn't mind learning magic from Alice. I'd prefer it to learning magic from Marisa, in fact. Mima's words make me think that she wants us to ask one of them for some instruction too, so Alice has my vote in that regard.
>>No. 25132
File 124789912296.jpg - (76.51KB, 350x535, THIS COULD HAVE BEEN YOU ARC.jpg) [iqdb]
25132
Okay, so you lose the game for Reimu, because apparently you decided you wanted to grope your alleged 'captor'. Mima is disappointed you didn't use your magic, now pointing you towards two equally distasteful magical 'sources', the obsessive and controlling Alice standing in the corner, or the frivolous and controlling Suika who you were sleeping on top of.

That's bad, Anon. You had a chance to show your stuff after making all that bluster in front of the shrine maiden, and now she can see you're just full of hot air. That won't do at all.

But there is hope. You can redeem yourself. And like all the opportunities that would have had you use your magic before, it will require a write-in. You're going to make Suika an offer she cannot refuse, her favorite challenge--a drinking game--not letting on that the game was rigged from the start. Mercifully, Mima kept you unconscious long enough so that you don't have a splitting hangover, meaning the alcohol should be gone from your system. Suika however has apparently been even more intemperate than usual, collapsing again in the bath, probably because she likes her prize very much and has not completely recovered from last night.

[x] “Wait, which 'her' are you talking about here? The oni? The shrine maiden? Or someone else who mistakenly thought you couldn't see her?”
-[x] Tell her that you'll give her the full story in exchange for two favors: One that she help you vindicate yourself in the eyes of the shrine maiden by getting your revenge against the oni, and, through this more pancakes; you need to fill up on grain to slow the digestion of the alcohol you'll soon be binging on.
-[x] Tell her you plan to win your freedom from Suika, as well as making her clean up the mess and apologize to Reimu for the damages, by beating her at her own game: A challenge. Specifically, a drinking contest.
-[x] You have magic that Suika doesn't know a thing about, and after that charade last night, she's unlikely to expect any especial duplicity from you. Using magic, you should be able to do something similar to how the shrine maiden was purifying her body to stay sober.
-[x] It may also be time to use man's oldest weapon against oni--frank deception. She can spot an outright lie, but it won't come to that: She'll have a lot of the good stuff from last night for her to drink, but you know the first trick a barman learns is to water down the swill. Bring a few bottles of diluted booze with you, hidden along with the regular, making sure you mark the weak stuff.
-[x] Alice is free to watch if she likes. If anything the entertainment will be recompense for the pancakes.
[x] Bath. Hopefully, Suika will still be asleep, and you'll catch her sleepy, groggy, torpid, both from the warm bathwater and the alcohol, while you (miraculously) are at your peak. It doesn't matter what her state of dress is; as soon as you lay down a challenge, that will be the only thought on her mind.
-[x] Challenge her to a one-on-one drinking game. The stakes are your continued, voluntary servitude to her if she wins, or her freeing you of prior obligations, cleaning the shrine, and apologizing sincerely to Reimu for letting things get out of hand last night.
-[x] Pray you still have magic Mima lent you, so you can turn wine-into-water so to speak as you're drinking it. Even if it doesn't work immediately, if you can tough it out long enough, you might renew Mima's interests with your bravado such that she reinstates it.

David may yet defeat Goliath. But that will take a bit of cunning, a lot of moxie, and some faith.

Remember the game the protagonist is named after? Arc was rather unique as a protagonist, being in possession of a powerful cure spell early on that also removed all negative status effects. In Touhou terms, you might use the appellation "Renewal Sign 『Total Healing』".
>>No. 25133
>>25132
>Mercifully, Mima kept you unconscious long enough so that you don't have a splitting hangover, meaning the alcohol should be gone from your system.

The hell were you reading? Arc just spent a good long while there with a massive headache, and supersensitive to noise, to the point where speech of a level volume caused him notable pain. Then he had to concentrate with all he had just to eat. The last update ends with him explicitly mentioning that his aching head is keeping him from giving Alice a longer answer.

>fuckhuge write-in

Are you fucking serious? Arc does not have the concentration for something of this magnitude right now. On top of that, it's wildly out of character - he's basically a good kid, and it's highly doubtful he would use this sort of tactic. That's not mentioning your bizarre idea that Arc needs to get "free" from Suika, when she hired him; if it were too much for him, Arc could viably just quit, though it might get him some flak from his aunt. It's not like Suika is some iron-fisted dictator, even; she can be irritating, yes, but she's still nice enough to Arc, and he's already treated ehr like a friend.

What the fuck are you on?
>>No. 25134
[X] Which her are you talking about?

This needs to get settled, toot-sweet.
>>No. 25135
[X] Which her are you talking about?
>>No. 25136
File 124790624027.jpg - (80.89KB, 250x250, arc saucy.jpg) [iqdb]
25136
>>25133

To be fair much of that had been written before the last update. But a terrible headache is actually all the more reason to seek retribution on the persons who caused this. Besides, he even notes that it is fading rather rapidly:

>The throbbing in my head was still intense, but it felt like it could actually start subsiding any time soon.

As for the length of the write-in, it involves thinking no more critical than he used during the contest last night, and secondly, since apparently Mima didn't drill it into your thick skull hard enough, Arc can simply cure the hangover with magic.

Just like how Alice and Reimu have. Or he could ask Alice to do it for him. Doesn't really matter. What does matter is that he's pissed off, from the headache, from being snubbed by the shrine maiden, from being stalked by Alice, and from living at the whims of the oni. To boot, the deus ex machina he admires just came to him in a dream and told him in no uncertain terms that he had failed, hard. (And by the way it's clear that Mima was keeping him asleep; that's why she apologized and why Reimu had to cut off his air supply to wake him up.)

It's his job? He can leave any time he wants? Spare me. The record is unequivocal on how he regards his treatment, along with others telling him how miserable he looks:

>The world spun around me before I came crashing down on the hard floor. I protested this sudden act of violence with a groan. Suika laughed, pinning me down with an arm with more strength than I would have thought imaginable. “Sounds to me like you're just an old fuddy-duddy.” Again she overwhelmed me with a combination of brute strength and boldness, she shoved the not-quite-empty bottle into my mouth. “Drink until you loosen up!”
>“That's not funny!” I yelled out between gasps for air. I was more angry than anything else, enough to override any feelings I would have felt from having her bare flesh rubbing up against mine.
>“I'm not a guest! I'm here because I was forced to come. Geez, what is it with you!?” I stood up, leaning on the wall for support and put my clothes on as quickly as I could.

>Well, I wasn't actually sure at this stage what it was that I was hired for. Suika didn't exactly spell out what she expected me to do, using me increasingly like a plaything; But it sounded like a nice and dependable-sounding thing to say.

>“You're just using me, aren't you?” The realization evoked much anger within me. She was doing this to get that stupid story of hers. I could play along when it was something relatively benign, like I had originally with Suika, but this was too much. “What the hell is-”

>“Doesn't it bother you?”
>“Bother me? Yeah, it does.” I guessed what she was talking about. “It bothers me plenty.”
>“Doesn't seem so. You left without doing anything.”

>“Hey,” I tried to justify myself, “I get the feeling that if I had stayed and yelled, gotten mad, thrown a fit, it might have made me feel better, but it wasn't going to change anything. You know that's true, right? Those people do whatever the hell it is that they want to do.”
>“Unless you stop them.”
>“I've been pinned down by a little girl and forced to do as she pleased several times by now. It makes me feel frustrated and mad at myself, more than just at her I think. She might be an exception, but it really doesn't feel like I could do anything against any of you here.”

>“Even if you fought back, with weapons or even with tooth and nail well... Let me just put it this way; It doesn't look like you're even able to resist something that a human would do.”

And of course he cowered.

These are just from the most cursory of readings of the last two threads.

Arc feels mistreated. He feels angry because of this. But he's not resigned to it completely, as he said he's also angry at himself for letting it happen. If wanting to break this cycle and becoming an adult is 'acting out of character' then, yes, there is an appropriate time for a boy (as Mima so strongly emphasized) to act out of character and put away childish things: When the boy becomes an adult. And this story, as much as it is anything, is a coming-of-age tale.
>>No. 25138
she's clearly referring to Marisa
[x] “I don't care about her enough to have enjoyed it.”
>>No. 25139
[X] Which her are you talking about?
No fuck-huge write-ins thank you very much.
>>No. 25141
[!/] Which her are you talking about?

LOL, stupid fuckhuge writein.

Haven't you learned your lesson about those?
>>No. 25143
[X] Which her are you talking about?
Hungover. Brain don't work good.
>>No. 25144
[+] Which "her" are you talking about?
PERFECTLY SUITABLE WRITE-IN RESPONSE. I--is that even possible?
>>No. 25145
>>25136

First off, most of the relevant quotes are isolated incidents that Arc was justifiably irritated by, not indicative of some sort of built-up deep-harbored resentment toward Suika. At least one of the quotes shows that he's just confused at the time, and isn't even mad about anything. He grumbles about his job from time to time, but he obviously doesn't mind it too much on any serious level, especially since he rather clearly expressed that he felt like he belonged to the group before he went under.

The rest of the quotes are not regarding Suika.

Then there's the fact that Reimu was actually rather nice about waking him up, and was genuinely apologetic. She wasn't snubbing him; she just didn't really want to talk about the contest. There is a difference.

I reiterate: what the fuck are you on?
>>No. 25148
“Who are you talking about?” I did my best not to wince while talking. It was harder than I thought it would be, my face muscles had a predisposition to contracting. “Which 'her' are you talking about?”
“...”
“Look, I can't really answer you if you aren't specific. I drank way too much last night and now my head feels like its splitting open...” I took a deep breath. Talking made it feel like I had an amplified echo bouncing about in my skull. “...I can't remember much.” I felt myself blushing. Except what I did with Suika's horns. I remembered a scene with the oni encouraging me and with the both of us stripping...

That was definitely a dream. Hopefully.

“Are you still hungry?”
“...not really.” I didn't know what to make of the subject change. But I felt relieved.”
“You're acting as frail as you look.” Was that a joke? I narrowed my eyes at her, surprised to see what seemed like a fairly wide smile. “A normal human wouldn't have made it.”
“I'm not normal?”
“That's the conclusion.”
“Thank you, I guess.” I forced a smile.

The water I drank was helping, and already I felt my dehydrated body heading towards normalcy.

“I should get back and help Reimu. It's my job.”
“You would get in the way.” Alice observed. “There's more of a chance that you would sully everything further rather than clean up.”
“I'm not that bad-” It was then that I realized that I was holding onto the wall for support. My legs were wobbling.
“Admirable. But she told me to keep you here.”
“Reimu did?”
“Indeed. I would do the same.” She explained, “Like you've noticed, you're not that sturdy. I don't think the shrine maiden would enjoy it if her reputation in the village were atrocious.”
“Ah.”

But she didn't really have a reputation in the village to begin with. Still, I tried not to speak. Anything I said hurt me as it came out. Heck, even thinking it hurt. Did I really look like I was on death's door? The way she put it, it seemed so.

“Sit.” She instructed.
“Why?”
“I can help.” There was no further explanation. Alice took a step towards me, with the usual unreadable stoic look. “Sit down.”

[] Sit
[] ...going to take a bath right now sounds better
>>No. 25149
[X] Sit.

Whatever you say, pretty doll lady.
>>No. 25150
[X] Sit.
>>No. 25151
[x] ...going to take a bath right now sounds better
>>No. 25152
[X] Sit.
>>No. 25153
[+] Woof.
>>No. 25154
[X] Sit
>>No. 25155
Writing.
>>No. 25156
File 124795089090.jpg - (41.57KB, 300x300, 3573d3185d22c87de59cf75c13a156df.jpg) [iqdb]
25156
[X] Sit
>>No. 25157
[x] Sit

I parked myself on the floor, sitting right there and then. Alice moved on towards me, circling around to my back. It reminded me of what had happened just last evening, but I didn't dare to say anything about it, giving myself in.

She crouched down behind me, and I then felt different sources of pressure on my back. I realized that she was pressing her fingers against me. She dug in at different spots, then moved in concentric motions, sweeping gently across.

“...a massage.” I told myself out loud. “Thanks, but I'm in a different kind of pain.”
“Silence.” Her command, as before, was short and precise. Not in a mood to argue, I just let her do as she pleased.

She worked methodically, covering areas diligently and efficiently. It felt good. And maybe, just maybe it was helping with the throbbing in my skull.

“Knowing the body, as well as the soul, is a perquisite to being a magician.” She explained as if she had read my mind. “Easing blood flow is easier than manipulating a puppet on a string. All that needs to be done is to press the right spots and guide the body to do the rest.”
“That's amazing.” My headache wasn't gone, but it felt like it might be sometime soon. I could put together a sentence or two without expiring now. “Thank you for this.”
“If you must.”

With that weird reply she continued to silently work on me, massaging me into a state of relative bliss.

She stopped abruptly.

“Food...” A guttural voice came from the newcomer to the scene.

Looking like she had been trampled by a raging herd of livestock, Marisa barely stood, her weight shifted onto the wall. Her look was wild and animalistic, yet her movements were as sluggish and clumsily as mine had been.

“There's no more food.” Alice declared, getting up and facing her. I got up as well, now able to look at indirect sunlight without flinching.

“No more food?!” Marisa yelled out, recoiling after hurting herself with the volume of her own voice. “Reimu said that there was plenty of food over here.”
“It's been eaten.”
“Can't you make any more? Why else are you here?”
“There are no more materials.” Alice answered plainly. I didn't know whether or not it was my imagination, but I thought that maybe this was Alice's way of messing with Marisa. There was at least a pancake or two left. I hadn't eaten the ones that she was making when I came in.
“Gah, whatever.” Marisa crumpled. She fell on the floor like a broken doll. “I guess I'll go ahead and die now.”

Alice giggled. She then looked at me and pointed with a inclination of her head where the hotcakes were.

“Help yourself.” I brought the plate to Marisa, hoping that she wouldn't make any loud exclamations any more. They hurt.
“Oh, my savior.” Marisa consumed the food on the plate in a manner not fitting a human. It was more like a single flame devouring a stack of dry hay. It was pretty disgusting actually. “More.”
“There's no more. Really.”

Marisa curled up into a ball, making her figure seem absolutely minute.

I poked her. It was hard to resist the temptation.

“Leave me alone.”
“Are you going to stay there? I know you're feeling bad, like I am, but Alice her can help.”
“No she can't.”
“She massaged me. It felt great.”

“Oh Alice sweetie~ help me, will you?” Her pleading voice was a sharp contrast to the usual tone she took up with Alice.
“No.” The other girl replied. That was that. Marisa started whimpering pathetically.
“It's not fair...”

“Well, whatever. I'm out of here.” I said. “I'm going to take a bath now.”
“You can't.” Marisa spoke up, hurting herself with her loud words.
“How come?”
“You've got to get me out of here. I can't make it out on my own.”
“I don't see why I have to help you.”
“You mean you don't remember?” She clutched her head, rubbing it in a futile effort.
“Remember what?”
“Last night. If you don't remember maybe that's why you're so calm. Either Reimu or Suika is going to be very angry, very quickly.”
“I have no idea what you're on about.”
“We have to go quickly. Even Alice agrees, right?”

“It would be prudent.” Alice agreed with her. “Go home, come back another day if you have to.”
“I have a job to finish.”
“It's already done.”

Marisa scrambled to her feet somehow, looking as frail as a paper doll. “Come on, your aunt probably misses you or something.”

I found myself being more or less lead by the two girls. I was in front of the shrine by the steps in no time flat. With good timing, it seemed. I heard loud noises from within the shrine, violent gusts of wind blowing out from the corridor. I propped up Marisa by the shoulder and walked down the flight of stairs.

“...”
“Come on, lets not lose time.” Marisa spoke with detectable agony in her voice. The sunlight bothered me quite a bit, to her it must have been a hellish experience. “If you left something behind, come back for it another day.”

[] Carry on
[] Turn back
>>No. 25159
[X]Carry on

So, it's something that can get Reimu and Suika pissed off?
Damn, what'd Arc do, smash all the remaining bottles of alcohol?
>>No. 25160
[X] Turn back

Arc's a good boy. If he's done something wrong, he ain't going to run away from it. After all, what was all that bravado about standing strong for?
>>No. 25161
[x] Turn back
Reimu doesn't seem that mad and I doubt Suika is gonna exactly flatten us
>>No. 25163
[x] Turn back

Be a man, face your problems head on. That and I want to find out what on earth he did.
>>No. 25164
[x] Turn back

No use running away as they (Reimu & Suika) can hunt him down. Unlike the others, Arc does not have the luxury of being able to defend himself seemingly just yet. Face whatever trouble comes head on.


man up Arc damn it...
>>No. 25165
[X] Turn back
>>No. 25166
[X] Turn back
gotta know!
>>No. 25167
Very well. Writing now.
>>No. 25170
“You're not getting paid to stand there.”
“I'm not getting paid at all...”
“What did you say?”
“Nothing Auntie.” I hadn't gotten paid for about two weeks now. Suika did pay us for what I did, but she paid directly to my aunt, and so I ended up never seeing any of the fruits of my labor.

I grumbled to myself and started cleaning the shelves. The woman hadn't given me a break since I got back – working me tirelessly from dawn to dusk. 'Just because you did a special job, doesn't mean you're entitled to extra leave', or so she claimed. She claimed not to be upset with me, but I knew otherwise. Just because I had broken my arm, she treated me like a complete idiot. I told her it wasn't my fault, but she wouldn't have any of it.

I grabbed a duster with my unbandaged arm and cleaned. Auntie could hardly believe it when I came back all battered and bruised. Not to mention the fact that I was being carried by the same girl who had spirited me away all those days ago. My arm had already been taken care of by the others, and I just looked hurt, that's all. I could still do pretty much everything I did before. A trained animal could do what I did probably. If that were the case, it'd get more respect than I ever had, no doubt.

Back then, curiosity had gotten the best of me. Going back to see what was going on, I entered the shrine once again. I heard noises, like large pops and cackles coming from where the party had been hosted. Despite the strangely warm gust, I had forced myself to trudge ahead to see what was going on. All signs pointed that there was something violent and drastic afoot, but I had ignored them, ignored Marisa's words as well, and selfishly indulged my curiosity.

A bell rang.

“There's a customer, go take care of it.” The orders came from upstairs. I sighed and put down the duster. She was definitely acting harsher than usual. I was down to cooking meals myself, instead of eating her (admittedly nice) meals. She claimed that I needed more responsibility, but I wondered about that.

I walked past the curtain to the counter.

“Good morning.” I said as cheerfully as I could. “How may I help you today?”
“I'd like you please.”
“I'm sorry- oh, it's you.” Standing smiling just like the first time I had met her, Suika stood there with the same incorrigible attitude. “I'm working now, you know.” I acted cold towards her. Not that I was particularly upset with her or anything, it just seemed like it was the right attitude to take.

I was hurt because of her.

Actually, because of her and Reimu.

I remember at the time feeling that I should have heeded Marisa's advice. She had told me that I was insane for going back in, moreover alone, but there I was, in the epicenter of it all. What I had seen was light and power. There was no other way to describe it. It was a scene of chaos, with to focal points. Reimu and Suika stood opposed to each other in the room, launching wave after wave of projectile. It was a captivating sight, to be certain, but I hadn't realized just how dangerous it was.

Long story short, I got caught up in something I could not avoid. I was lucky to just break my arm, really. I impacted with enough force to kill myself, it was a lucky break that I thought to land on my arm.

Alice had come back, and had been the one that bandaged my arm up. She wasn't kidding when she said that she knew about the human body. She put my broken arm in a tight sling, and was the one that noticed the weird mark on my forearm. There was a star, seemingly made of ink, on my right forearm. I don't know how it had gotten there, no one that I had asked later remembered seeing it during the party (though they were more than willing to painstakingly describe the details of some of the things I did). I couldn't see it now, with my arm under bandages, but I knew that the small black mark was there. Thank god that auntie hadn't seen it either, otherwise she would have given me much lip about defacing my own body.

“Don't be like that Arc.” The oni smiled, as innocently (rather, deceptively) as the last time she stood across the counter from me. “I've even got something for you.”

She grabbed something from within her dress. I could only imagine where exactly she had stored it in that flimsy outfit of hers.

“Here you are. From me and Reimu. We've been thinking of you.”
“That's nice. Really. But I don't need them.” I let her place the bouquet of flowers on the counter.
“We feel bad about it, that's all.”
“I'm fine. It was my fault being there in the first place.”
“Yeah, it was. But it doesn't change the fact that we hurt you.”
“How's Reimu doing anyways?”
“Doing shrine maiden stuff. Like normal. It's boring up there. So I've been wandering around these days.”
“What a tragedy.” I spoke sarcastically. It was a small way that I had of venting the frustration that I sometimes felt when around Suika.
“I'm thinking of throwing another party sometime soon actually.”
“Do you want to buy anything then?”
“Maybe later. Tell your aunt that I want another special order of that.”
“Don't you ever learn?” 'that' was what caused all of the trouble last time. “There's plenty of good stuff besides that.”
“No, my mind has been made up.”

“The customer is always right.”
“Ah, auntie.” She scared my stiff. I hadn't noticed, but she was standing behind me with one of her scary smiles. Come to think of it, seeing her reminded me of something. The way Yukari behaved...
“We'll have your order ready miss, just tell us for when you want it.”
“There's no rush.” Suika said.
“If you say so. Will you be needing my nephew's services again?”
“I haven't decided yet auntie.”

My heart skipped a beat. What I had just heard was extremely disturbing. Did Suika just call my aunt, that? What's more, my aunt was totally ok with it? She smiled, like she would at my other younger cousins.

“For now, may I take Arc out for a bit? There are some things that I want to do with him.”
“Why of course,” She agreed way too easily, “just be sure to have him back by evening. He need his rest, after all.”

Suika tugged my arm. My good arm, fortunately. She practically lifted me over the counter in order to run off with me. Her lips had the same devilish and mischievous smile that I was now all too familiar with.

I knew that despite my broken arm, I would be in for another exciting afternoon. Whether I liked it or not.

End
>>No. 25171
>>25170

So Arc is reduced to being an oni's slave?

BAD END.
>>No. 25172
File 124795876039.jpg - (145.06KB, 450x730, 3b3df5e089175ed46325820ea7bd7d20.jpg) [iqdb]
25172
>>25170

Did we just get laid?

>END

FFFFFFFFFFFFFF this better not be what I hope it isn't.
>>No. 25173
So... that's it?

Feels anticlimactic man

And mildly confusing.
>>No. 25174
File 12479590064.jpg - (5.14KB, 100x100, 1182805845700.jpg) [iqdb]
25174
>End
>>No. 25175
File 124795918063.jpg - (148.35KB, 800x800, 9ac4efbbd6b8285012991ca5efd73ae0.jpg) [iqdb]
25175
>>25172
>HALF MANLY REDEEMER WITH A BROKEN ARM END.

Atleast we went back to face whatever we did
>>No. 25176
I want to punch Suika in the face.
>>No. 25177
>>25176

Your hand would shatter, but I feel the same way.
>>No. 25180
Are we allowed to go back to our previous decision

All that build up seems to have lead to nothing
>>No. 25181
> “Last night. If you don't remember maybe that's why you're so calm. Either Reimu or Suika is going to be very angry, very quickly.”

> Reimu and Suika stood opposed to each other in the room, launching wave after wave of projectile.

So apparently one of these things is related to the other, and I don't see it.
>>No. 25184
File 12479638596.jpg - (121.32KB, 400x396, shirou.jpg) [iqdb]
25184
>>No. 25185
Well that was that. I suppose I should have given you a bit more warning, but it was originally intended to be a short story that would last a very short amount of time. It was supposed to be over a couple of weeks ago, but life caught up with me.

The wasn't supposed to be much in the way of plot beyond 'have a good time, meet different people'. So that excluded sudden romance and any long-term ambition.

However, that's not to say that it's a pointless story. Like I said in the beginning, this could turn out to very well be something episodic. And I'll share some of the ideas that I had in mind.

Some of the foundations here were laid for potentially a couple of things. The first one being more lighthearted stories around the themes of party and fun. These would also be short. I had considered writing 'chapters' focused on other adventures. Like Arc and the Scarlet Devil Ball, Arc and the Shrine of the Youkai, or Arc and the Endless Portals (think like your tried and true themed books and comics where they go to different places). And so there would be recurring cast and developing relationships and perhaps advancing overreaching plot (though it would take a backseat admittedly).

The second one is something that could happen instead of the former. A more in depth exploration with the same focus more or less. This is what I gather would be the preferred option if I asked just in /shrine/. It would mean another style of narrative though, one more focused on character development. Since it'd probably focus on developing relationships whose groundwork has been placed. This would have more of a plot, but it would serve as a subordinate to (a) relationship(s).

The third thing is something that doesn't even have to be necessarily tied to Arc and his lot, and even if he was the protagonist, it could be a parallel reality or something. I've had ideas for a while to write a story about an apprentice magician. Mima would feature as a plot hook. But would not be the main focus. This would obviously go in /forest/.

I realize that the story felt somewhat anticlimactic, but that's because it wasn't supposed to have a great climax. A simple slice-of-life fast-paced story that has the potential for more was the intention. It gave me a chance to try a new style. I would appreciate any feedback that you had though, as well as any thoughts on what I wrote. I wouldn't start something new right away. Perhaps in a couple of days. After fleshing out details and whatever.
>>No. 25187
This was a depressing end. Not because it seems so for the protagonist (it does), or because it was sudden and inexplicable, but because there seems no reason the story shouldn't continue as is.

>Some of the foundations here were laid for potentially a couple of things. The first one being more lighthearted stories around the themes of party and fun. These would also be short. I had considered writing 'chapters' focused on other adventures. Like Arc and the Scarlet Devil Ball, Arc and the Shrine of the Youkai, or Arc and the Endless Portals (think like your tried and true themed books and comics where they go to different places). And so there would be recurring cast and developing relationships and perhaps advancing overreaching plot (though it would take a backseat admittedly).

I don't know if more lightheartedness is what we need, but being sent through work to various Gensokyo locales, which provide more opportunities for the main character's growth. I don't know if you realize that the protagonist is the most compelling character in the story. I'd suggest replace the 'Endless Portals' with the Streets of Mayohiga or the Halls of Mugenkan--something more suitably Touhou.

>The second one is something that could happen instead of the former. A more in depth exploration with the same focus more or less. This is what I gather would be the preferred option if I asked just in /shrine/. It would mean another style of narrative though, one more focused on character development. Since it'd probably focus on developing relationships whose groundwork has been placed. This would have more of a plot, but it would serve as a subordinate to (a) relationship(s).

I don't see why you have to change anything. The story was highly enjoyable as is. In fact it was getting more so toward the end, with character development seeming to be progressing at a rapid pace, which is all the more reason why the sudden end here is frustrating.

>Mima would feature as a plot hook. But would not be the main focus. This would obviously go in /forest/.

I don't see how that follows. If it were Marisa and Alice, maybe, but Mima is decidedly a /shrine/ resident. Even if it was only guided study, at least the protagonist will have a reasonable excuse to be at the shrine already. As cruel as his aunt is, he doesn't seem like the kind who's willing to become persona non grata in the village because he abandoned his duties.

>I realize that the story felt somewhat anticlimactic, but that's because it wasn't supposed to have a great climax.

But it didn't have any climax at all. You glossed over the critical scene, with no explanation as to what caused it, or how things could have been any different had we not chosen to investigate. The reader is left as confused and exasperated as the protagonist.

>A simple slice-of-life fast-paced story that has the potential for more was the intention.

But that's why this is so frustrating. Your apparent intention and the results do not add up. We saw glimpses of brilliance, conflict, and the possibility of transformation. Those late Reimu scenes especially seemed to be digging at something deeper. Of course you could be right, and the reader is simply seeing more effort put into parts than there actually was.
>>No. 25190
File 124796889478.jpg - (379.47KB, 544x1701, 71a5051841ea2dad46cfb3678a56b84e.jpg) [iqdb]
25190
>>25185>>25187
You're leaving out the most important part: what about all that chemistry with Reimu? We had people acting like we'd already hooked up, and now nothing happens?
>>No. 25192
File 124797378291.jpg - (672.06KB, 1280x1024, 1245727908505.jpg) [iqdb]
25192
Another incident has just occurred.
Are you a bad enough dude to piss and moan about on IRC about it?

Dear Writefag:

You have built a solid foundation for a /shrine/ plottan' house, but you feel the need to make another elsewhere?

It's a waste of writtan' resources and plants seeds of growing contempt and uncertainty in your reader base.

Look at Kira and HY.
They have turned into EA publishers of THP.
If you are any sort of vidya bro, 'nuff said.
Post >>16124 in /eientei/ is this truthiness incarnate.

Tl;dr This is reminding most Anonymous of Tetrominion...;_;
>>No. 25193
>>25190

We don't even know what the hell happened.

>no one that I had asked later remembered seeing it during the party (though they were more than willing to painstakingly describe the details of some of the things I did).

>I remembered a scene with the oni encouraging me and with the both of us stripping...

From all appearances Arc publicly did the nasty with somebody--the last thing he remembers is stroking Suika's horns and then later waking up partially on top of someone. With Reimu seems much less likely, but then why would Suika have any reason to be angry? Because Reimu told her we couldn't stay over any more? Again it would've been nice if going back into shrine revealed any meaningful information, rather than simply giving Arc a broken arm.

>“Last night. If you don't remember maybe that's why you're so calm. Either Reimu or Suika is going to be very angry, very quickly.”

It seems what happened could possibly be the result of ingesting aphrodisiac or otherwise 'special' wine.

>“Maybe later. Tell your aunt that I want another special order of that.”
>“Don't you ever learn?” 'that' was what caused all of the trouble last time. “There's plenty of good stuff besides that.”

And now it seems Arc's been all but betrothed to Suika!

>“If you say so. Will you be needing my nephew's services again?”
>“I haven't decided yet auntie.”
>My heart skipped a beat. What I had just heard was extremely disturbing. Did Suika just call my aunt, that? What's more, my aunt was totally ok with it?

Of course, Arc's aunt is kind of a bitch, as he increasingly notes in his monologue, so I'm not entirely sure he'd go through with it, even if that would mean moving out of his house and finding real employment.

And that doesn't even approach what the hell Mima was trying to say: She was clearly disappointed and seemed to be pushing him toward Alice for future learning. Yet, he wakes up with this mysterious star on his arm that no one seems to know anything about.
>>No. 25194
>>25193

Man, I didn't want to contemplate that outcome, even though it crossed my mind. The idea of Arc nailing Suika and getting stuck with her is just depressing; I mean, they get along well enough, even if she can be irritating, but... he just had so much chemistry with Reimu. The prospect of him losing any chance with her is just disheartening.
>>No. 25195
File 124798317927.jpg - (443.64KB, 1600x1122, dcc1cd6221d29d752dcf6c95fc364ac3.jpg) [iqdb]
25195
>>25194

Can't be that bad.

Eventually Suika will grow on little boy Arc and they will have some adventuran' together and manly coming of age moments.

Years after when Reimu and Arc are older at the ripe age of 25ish, that odd sexual tension will still exist between them. Arc would probably subtly hint at it and so would Reimu as well.

But on one rather hot and humid summer night at the shrine, Arc will force a straight answer out of her and she would reply I'm happy if you're happy with the most sincere smile she could muster.

Finally having closure, Arc pledges his (short) life to Suika. Reimu and his Auntie would be his best-menwomen.
A week after Arc and Suika have been married; they move out of the shrine to Suika's house/shack in Heaven.

Reimu would remain single until Alice and Marisa set her up on a date with a rather burly carpenter from the Human Village. Out of hope and decisions, she marries him out of wedlock.

Now at the frail age of 65, Arc visits Reimu after not seeing the other since the funeral of her husband (who died due to a freak sawblade accident) 8 years ago. Arc asks Reimu if she is still happy. Without looking at his face, grey hair hiding her eyes, she gives a meek "Yes."

Happy with the answer, Arc played with Reimu's grandchildren.

However, his aliments from his youth caught up with him. With a smile on his face and mind free from his earthly troubles, Arc passed
away peacefully in his sleep.

After the monthly tea visit, the day after Arc's passing from Satori, Reimu's health rapidly declined. 5 days after falling ill to a summer flu, she passes away after seeing her children one last time.

Many of the villagers think she died due old age. But the youkai knew.
It was something not even a youkai could ever die to. A very human quirk.
A broken heart
>>No. 25196
I figured the star is just Arc's witches' mark.

And I enjoyed the story but the ending has left me unfulfilled, and wishing someone would beat some sense into Suika.
>>No. 25197
File 124798752896.jpg - (224.59KB, 500x480, 6703bd6fb1adbc42567627db3ddcedc0.jpg) [iqdb]
25197
>>25185
Is that why it wasn't mentioned who did what at the party? So it leaves open the possibility of that becoming part of the wider plot or something? I'm also wondering what was the significance of mima and getting magic at all.

I certainly think you should go with the write a series of shortstories episodic idea with the developing relationships.

Also whoever keeps trying to write someone elses story needs to get out and go do their own.
>>No. 25198
Thanks for the input thus far, I appreciate all opinions and comments, as it gives me insight to what (you) the reader is thinking.

I'll start by saying that I'm sorry, perhaps I should have explained things in a clearer manner.

This ending was purposefully sudden and open in nature. What actually transpired wasn't becoming a slave to Suika (which is sloppy writing on my part I suppose, since I can see how you came to that conclusion). It's an ending that may lead to many different things, hence having Suika drag Arc off to do whatever.

In a sense, as frustrating as it may seem, this short tale was something to be enjoyed with something of a relaxed attitude. No real serious business – at least not at this stage. There's no need to feel exasperated at missing something or a chance with someone. The potential for following plot hooks and threads is there and that's where the ideas I mentioned earlier come in.

Quite honestly, in my moments of madness, I had pictured maybe this story as an introduction to different aspects of Gensokyo. Meaning that, say, after his stint at the shrine Arc's reputation would maybe get him a similar job at the SDM. Or a private function elsewhere. Perhaps, having caught Yukari's eye, he could serve as a temporary adjutant for a few days to the esteemed lady. These were different plots that I had thought up that were complementary and episodic in nature – more rigid short stories that lead to perhaps something at the end. Sure this was me getting ahead of myself, but it seemed like a good vague idea to aspire to.

Seeing how starved for Reimu /shrine/ seems to be (no real shocker there really), I had also thought of another possibility. Of ditching the episodic content altogether and just focusing on a more relationshipy-type story. Which of course has a plot, and events, and whatever, but the main purpose would be to develop relationships. I should note here that the episodic model also allows for this, but it would definitely be considerably more shallow, with faster, more generalized approach to characterization.

The thing with Mima... well that is something related to the other idea I mentioned. While she's definitely /shrine/, her story is one that can't be told without mentioning both magic and why she's even around to begin with. Her story was only hinted at in DEFT (you could have found out a bit more, but I don't think it would have changed things on the macro scale – this was most definitely about the party, and Suika's selfish wishes). The whole magic thing isn't useless, but I would really like to expand on it in another story, preferably disconnected from the rest (or following up the rest) – this would almost definitely preclude the amorous relationship with the shrine maiden.

I don't mean to sow seeds of discontent, as I'm capable of working on more than one project at a time (given enough readers/votes, naturally). I was just throwing it out there, like everything else, to see what anon thought. I'm not quite sure what direction to take, which is why I wanted to hear feedback first (keep it up, if you want please).

I hope that I clarified my position/intent, and maybe allowed you to see things from another perspective.

I may or may not have an informal poll at some point, if only to quantify some support for some ideas, but that awaits on any more feedback.
>>No. 25199
The best input I can give is this:

Needs more Reimu.
>>No. 25200
>The whole magic thing isn't useless, but I would really like to expand on it in another story, preferably disconnected from the rest (or following up the rest) – this would almost definitely preclude the amorous relationship with the shrine maiden.

Why? Isn't it perfectly reasonable for Mima to be grooming a husband for Reimu? I mean, if she doesn't, then Yukari certainly will, and that could mean bad news for her. Already she's forced to do all her meddling in secret; considering that she is a ghost who escaped hell itself on account of her own ego, she should be grasping at any possibility of improving her situation. Why would she remain at the Hakurei shrine if she didn't believe there would be something to be gained by it?

Secondly, Arc doesn't have anyone in his life resembling a mother figure. Not his highly demeaning 'auntie', not the oni who uses him as human pinata, not the witch who admits she wants to use him without the barest pretense of benevolence or propriety.

There's also the whole magic vs. divine power dichotomy that's worth exploring. Certainly it would keep the mystery alive between the two, as well as make him seem more reliable as a love interest. That's why she was sizing him up in the kitchen wasn't it? It wasn't his bravery she was questioning, but would he die from simply being around her and her dangerous aquaintances?

He was found lacking this time, but he could try again. And again. He may have to, in fact, considering that Reimu's only true friend is a self-sufficient human magician with an MO of trial and error, even though she has her own flaws (ones Arc is not hampered by).
>>No. 25201
File 124800521989.jpg - (16.70KB, 256x352, humored elf woman.jpg) [iqdb]
25201
>>25192

>HY
>EA publisher of THP
>>No. 25202
>>25195

Why you do this?

>>25197
>Also whoever keeps trying to write someone elses story needs to get out and go do their own.

Perhaps the same could said of all write-fags? I guess we should stop using Zun's intellectual property and create our own danmaku series featuring girls in silly hats.

And you see, we do write our own stories. Of course, we don't want to unduly influence other voters, so we often don't use a trip or a name.

So, when another writer makes something so grand as this, such that the characters and relationships seem to stand on their own, how can we help to feel more emotionally invested in it than you are?
>>No. 25205
>>25201

You know it be true.
>>No. 25206
File 124802482117.jpg - (328.60KB, 970x711, bfb9c878413a929bee99da8d0ccf8bfe.jpg) [iqdb]
25206
>>25198

Explanations feel good, man.

>Perhaps, having caught Yukari's eye, he could serve as a temporary adjutant for a few days to the esteemed lady

Not Yukari enough.
She would serve Arc for a day instead.
>>No. 25209
>>25206

Goods gods, I can just see her doing that. There would never be an explanation for it either, she would just show up at his bedside one day in full maid uniform. Hilarity ensues.
>>No. 25210
>>25206
>She would serve Arc for a day instead.
Sup >>22286
>>No. 25212
>>25200
>Isn't it perfectly reasonable for Mima to be grooming a husband for Reimu?
It might be. Her motivations for doing anything that she does, at this point in time, is nebulous at best. There's a lot of reasons why she lives (well, as much as a ghost can live) the way she does in the shrine. Spending more time with Reimu isn't something that prevents seeing Mima necessarily, I was just saying that Mima's ambitions is something that is full-time in scope and dedication.

You are right about Arc not having a mother figure in his life. Well not in the traditional meaning. This despite his mother being alive and well.

>>25206
Who knows why Yukari does any of the things she does? It could be a cold, calculated, machiavellian thing with her just as it could be that she does whatever she feels like. When you've lived that long and have that much power it's hard to tell. I wouldn't say that it's impossible that she would do something like that (in fact I could picture the overly-cheery smile on her face as she showed up abruptly to interrupt his life), nonetheless I find it more likely that she would shoehorn Arc into another sort of situation. One where Arc is being useful to her. Whether it's related to continuing the Hakurei line, making her associates go green with jealousy, or something else completely, there's a plethora of possible reasons.

I'm still thinking things through on my end, trying to decide what would be the best thing to do next.
>>No. 25213
File 124803676865.png - (50.98KB, 400x550, arc kissu.png) [iqdb]
25213
>>25206
>She would serve Arc for a day instead.

Unfortunately, I don't see that happening. The only comparison of Yukari Arc has drawn thus far is to his Auntie, someone manipulative, selfish, and perhaps somewhat cruel.

>>25212
>Spending more time with Reimu isn't something that prevents seeing Mima necessarily, I was just saying that Mima's ambitions is something that is full-time in scope and dedication.

We don't need to bore fully into Mima's plans and ambitions. Rather, it might be better to keep it the way it is, as the mysterious benefactor. Arc doesn't need explanations of her motives or her history; he only needs her help and encouragement.

The traditional mother figure doesn't need or want the child to attempt to understand her and solve her problems; she's old enough and wizened enough and surely can care of herself. It's the child that needs caring, and the reward for her investment is the child's unconditional faith and admiration, and her pride at what she has raised (her less than glowing references to Marisa indicate past failures in that regard).

Who knows, maybe Mima really does plan on being the goddess of the Hakurei shrine? For that she would need worshipers, and a boy with great magic potential and no knowledge of her past misdeeds should be an excellent base to build a faithful around.

Like the Mima scenes thus far, it wouldn't necessarily need to take much time away from the narrative. Whisperings in his ears while making key decisions, direct loaning of her power on a reward & loyalty basis rather than actual magical tutoring (which would more accurately mimic how clerics derive their abilities from their gods), time-outs where she gives him sage advice or even direct commands with minimal explanation behind them. Even an unanswered prayer on his part before night time is sufficient.

She's a perfect deus ex machina, one that begs to be used. If you ever want to give Arc a reason for doing something, this is a tool much more agreeable to the reader than the threat of physical force from Suika or his Auntie's henpecking.
>>No. 25216
1. Needs more story

2. Needs more Mima and Mima plot

3. Needs more Reimu.

That's the short version.
>>No. 25220
Before I say anything else, I have to say that I was thoroughly enjoying this story, one of only two I am even following at the moment since any story I like either ends abruptly at the most inappropriate moment, or suddenly slows to one update per lunar eclipse.

Hay, guess what! Looks like I'm only following one now.

What the hell were you thinking? Both as a writer and as a decent human being?! The end result seems to have absolutely nothing to do with our actions up to that point, and it all happens off camera. It's like getting partway through a movie, then suddenly your friend shuts it off, tells you the rest in about 3 sentences (spitting on you to punctuate each line, mind you). Then, when they are finished, shatters the disk right in front of your eyes.

And then rapes you with the shards, just to drive the point home.

If your intention was to end this in a neutral stopping point to continue it later, this was this was the worst possible way to do it. No warning whatsoever, and now the story apparently has something terrible and or stupid our character has done that is going to taint the story even if you do decide to continue it.

As for the timing of this sudden end... my god. If you were to ask me (and I assume most of us?) what point of the story we thought we would be in, I'd guess we were maybe at the 1/4 mark, even if this was a single "episode".

I really don't want to sound like an ass, but let me put it this way. I had to read the ending post five times, because I thought some asshole had hijacked your thread and written a bad-end as a joke! That should tell you something.

Call me a troll, call me a jerk, I really don't care. I'm pissed, and for once I do not feel like being nice and sugarcoating it for you. You fucked up.
>>No. 25222
File 124812933994.jpg - (47.80KB, 400x300, SamElliottLebowski.jpg) [iqdb]
25222
>>25220

Though maybe in not such language, but if Sam Elliott were here 'I reckon' he would be calling for an extensive retcon himself.
>>No. 25223
>>25220

woah hey wow...

I'd hardly called it fucked up as it's a very plausible way things could have gone.

For one thing Arc could have very well heeded Alice's and Marisa's warning and left. Anon being anon, misread the option as a test of character rather than one where "hey there looks to be two choices with possible wildly different results".

Arc, with thanks to anon, got caught up in a fucked up situation that resulted in physical injury.

>Back then, curiosity had gotten the best of me. Going back to see what was going on, I entered the shrine once again. I heard noises, like large pops and cackles coming from where the party had been hosted. Despite the strangely warm gust, I had forced myself to trudge ahead to see what was going on. All signs pointed that there was something violent and drastic afoot, but I had ignored them, ignored Marisa's words as well, and selfishly indulged my curiosity.

Shit happens, carry on

Just settle with it as I can still see potential for a continuation. I doubt Mima would have their meetings end so abruptly if she had a goal in mind. As for what exactly sparked the duel between Reimu and Suika had been left ambiguous.

Considering how well the author wrote up to the end I wouldn't be so quick to write him off as having "fucked up".

Continue raging if you must, I await whatever else the author has in store for the future.
>>No. 25224
>>25223

The author called us (in arc's words) selfish for giving into his curiosity and going back when we went back to find out what the hell had happened and try and man up and make it better.

If that isn't a big middle finger to us, I don't know what is.

And it isn't the broken arm that people are complaining about, halfwit.
>>No. 25226
>>25224

Consider Arc (we) knew better I'm not surprised, but taking it as a middle finger, man I'd probably cringe to see your reaction where there there is a blantant flip off to ya.

touchy touchy

Good luck to ya anon-author!
>>No. 25227
>For one thing Arc could have very well heeded Alice's and Marisa's warning and left. Anon being anon, misread the option as a test of character rather than one where "hey there looks to be two choices with possible wildly different results".
>Arc, with thanks to anon, got caught up in a fucked up situation that resulted in physical injury.

That's really not the issue. The issue is that if we hadn't gone back, it would have changed absolutely nothing.

We still wouldn't know what went on that night.

we still wouldn't know why they were fighting.

We'd just not have a broken arm, which itself seems to serve no function as an element in the story, other than to emphasize his misery; he's apparently still working like a dog under his aunt, and still getting pulled into misadventures by the oni.

Oh, and a flower bouquet as a 'thinking of you' gift from Suika and ostensibly Reimu, who of course didn't show up in person or deign to put a message in writing. Suika didn't even apologize, going as far as to say it was your fault for being there. Her dismissive response about Reimu and her statement about not being around the shrine recently makes Reimu's actual role in this 'gift' rather suspect.

It's almost farcical really, like the final scene in a tragicomedy, except Arc is too weak-willed or resigned to voice his final, sarcastic remark.
>>No. 25240
>>25227

Yeah, that pretty much sums up what I was thinking.
>>No. 25242
I apologize for the strong reactions some of you had. I wouldn't be so fatalistic, thinking that things were messed up somehow, it was inevitable, etc. I can understand where you're coming from, which is why I'm sorry.

Hopefully your anxieties and fears will be dispelled soon, seing as I've already got the groundwork set up for the next stage of the chronicle. If you're not too bitter, I'd appreciate it if you gave it a chance. Expect something in the very near future.
>>No. 25243
File 124823190793.jpg - (144.33KB, 600x600, d0a12b8cc3b7dcf5302802c47341e896.jpg) [iqdb]
25243
>>25242
As long as there's more Reimu (at least eventually), I'm happy. If you had said "CHAPTER END" or something in the first place, most of this could have been avoided.
>>No. 33308
I just noticed something....
We're shinji ikari...
>>No. 33309
Oh, for cryin' out loud...

This thread was two years gone. Cease your vile necromancy. Learn to sage.
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