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File 133216276186.png - (4.33KB, 240x160, touhoumonanotherworldv1.png) [iqdb]
This will be my first Touhou Project story as well as my first CYOA, so please be gentle with me. At the very least I'm going to keep the spelling and grammar errors to a minimum. Constructive criticism welcome.


Your name is Arcus Kail and you are a warrior... well, in training. Over recent years several Clans have allied themselves together to better weather the constant attacks being waged on your peoples from other Clans. To further this alliance, a boarding school to promote relations between the the Allied Clans among the youth was opened in neutral territory.

You, along with several other youngsters from your clan, was hit by a surprise attack perpatrated by the Kurosawa Clan - those alligator-worshipping bastards.

Being hit with a dimensional weapon, you were automatically jetisoned from the trasport in an escape pod. You don't know anything about the status of your fellow Clansmen.

Blaring an alert, the escape pod's computer tells you that you're entering the atmosphere of a temperate, Earthlike world. Intial analsys says that as long as you practice good survival procedures that you can expect to have an relatively easy time until rescue comes along.

Of course, it's just saying that. From what little you know about Dimensional Weapons, few people ever 'survive' getting blasted through dimensional space and into who know's what universe. It's not like the exit vector is fixed and you're fairly certain that at least one or two of your Clansman has been blasted into an antimatter universe or something just as awful.

After burning through the top layers of atmosphere the escape pod deployed its primary brakes, making it resemble an egg with a flower ontop to an outside observer. Inside, it made Arcus feel like he was riding a pinwheel set to self-destruct.

It shouldn't be that rough though, unless...

Despite your wireless link to the excape pod's computer, you look out the obervation window - you just have to see it with your own eyes. Even though the blades are moving at a blurring speed, you can make out the gap.

One of them had snapped off.

Not good, you think to yourself. You may only be ten years old, and a bit naieve, but you already have a grasp of basic physics and its telling you that you're odds of surviving has just dropped by a huge percentage. The nanomachines that are infused into your bloodstream can only fix so much damage.

A loud bang acommpanied by a new wrenching motion. another blade has sheared clean off. Now you have very little room for thought. You can only hope that the emergency inertial compensators, designed to work until they burn-out on impact, do their job.

You barely hear the sound of the fourth blade breaking free, and you don't even hear the last one go. You just wait for the entire planet to hit you with its unstoppable force.

With a terrible sound you know no more.


Voting Time!

Your clan is...

[ ] Mori Clan
Totem Animal: Wolf
Adept at small team tactics, this clan works best in groups specialized in urban warfare.

Your equipment:
Heavyarm: Partical Beam Pulse Rifle
Sidearm: 5 Megawatt laser pistol
Melee: Katana
Armor: Medium with tactical suite (FoF indicator, automated COM scanner, etc.)

[ ] Akiyama Clan
Totem Animal: Raven
With a chatty nature and an uncanny ability to hide in plain sight, Akiyama are renown for their spycraft abilities. They also have a very nasty self defense discipline that focuses on permanently crippling and humiliating their opponents.

Your equipment:
Heavyarm: .50 Coil Rifle
Sidearm: 12 Gauge double-shotgun (short barrel, breach loading)
Melee: Twin Kodachi
Armor: Light with thermoptic camoflauge

[ ] Ueda Clan
Totem Animal: Bear
Acoomplished scouts and foragers, Ueda lack the subtelty of the Akiyama - instead they rely on a powerful offense and defense. They are difficult opponents to fight and can only be taken through overwhelming numbers.

Your equipment:
Heavyarm: 10 Megawatt Pulse Laser Gattling Gun
Sidearm: 40mm Plasma Mortar
Melee: Warhammer
Armor: Heavy with energy shields.

[ ] Write-in?

Who's house gets damaged by falling debris?

[ ] Hakurei Reimu
[ ] Remilia Scarlet
[ ] Keine Kamishirasawa
[ ] Write-in?

Who finds you first?

[ ] Cirno
[ ] Aya Shameimaru
[ ] Wriggle Nightbug
[ ] Write-in?
I don't have time to vote, but I'll do that later. So first, let me flame you. In a good way.

>Allied Clan
Don't capitalize them. Unless it's an alliance name or something, don't capitalize them.
Kinda the same. You shouldn't use capitals here.
>between the the
That's just you being forgetful. Proofreading your text should fix that. You can use a text-to-speech application to notice typos like that more easily.

That aside, I'm not really fond of the huge first vote, but that's only an opinion, so you can disregard this. In my opinion, I think you should've avoided to many votes in your first update. Give us time to understand the character and your own logic before giving us so many options.
Good luck anyway. And don't get a trip. I mean it, don't get a trip now.
[x] Ueda Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Shou Toramaru

Let's make this a Myouren Temple story, shall we?
[x] Mori Clan.
- [x] Combat knife instead of katana.
[x] Byakuren Hijiri.
[x] Yoshika Miyako.
SIR: Please be careful with perspective. Nothing disrupts the reading experience like seeing

>it made Arcus feel like he was

in a story written in second person.

That aside,
[x] Akiyama Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Kyouko Kasodani
Because sooner or later, someone has to give the mountain echo an appearance larger than a cameo.
[x] Mori Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Kyouko Kasodani

So, space opera/sci-fi initial setting?
Some typos here and there but nothing too jarring.
[x] Mori Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Kyouko Kasodani
Flame away, we love barbeque in these parts.

>That's just you being forgetful.
Consider me suitably shamed. From here on out I'm getting a good night's rest between when I write and when I proofread before posting. (Sure wish you guys had a preview post function. Ah well...)

Yeah, not used to writing in Second Person like this. I'll watch for it for now on. And I'll definitely see what I can do with everyone's favorite mountain echo. I think she'd love belting out military cadences.

Yep. Haven't seen much of that yet, so I figured what the hell. I'm a big fan of having The Power of SCIENCE! meet Phenomenal Cosmic Power... and having both sides be impressed with what they see.

Anyhow, I'll probably close the polls later tonight, like around 12am CST, and then start writing tomorrow afternoon. I already have a despicable villain in mind (heinous by Touhou standards).

And sorry about the short intro. I come from the school of writing where you get into the fun stuff ASAP. Don't worry, though. You'll be learning a lot more about Arcus in the next update.
You might want to get a proofreader to look at it as they're quite helpful. Here's to a hopefully nice story.

[x] Takeda Clan

Surprise me.
[x] Keine Kamishirasawa
[x] Wriggle Nightbug

I know this vote won't win at all with the bandwagoning, but I felt I had to get my opinion out there.
I remember seeing this idea begin in IRC. Delicious.

[x] Mori Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Kyouko Kasodani

... may appear to be bandwagoning, but it has good solid logic behind it.

Mori, because teamwork. Teamwork encourages character interaction.

Hijiri, because we're the closest thing to a crashing UFO.

Kyouko, because she's canonically a priest in training, an acolyte/novice. Someone still learning the ropes of Buddhism and serving Hijiri - someone whose footsteps we may follow and may eventually walk beside.

... but let's not get ahead of ourselves and declare a route or anything.
> heinous by Touhou standards

[x] Ueda Clan
[x] Byakuren Hijiri
[x] Kyouko Kasodani
[ ] Akiyama Clan - Ninjaing people seems like fun.
[ ] Hakurei Reimu
[ ] Aki Shizuha - Needs more love, desperately.
[X] Ueda Clan
[X] Hakurei Reimu
[X] Wriggle Nightbug
[X] Ueda Clan
[X] Remilia Scarlet - Because she is good at holding grudges.
[X] Aki Shizuha - I would certainly like to see more of the Aki sisters, yes.
I don't think the people listed are quite possible romantic choices yet. I picked Keine as she'd be the most understanding and even tempered of the three. Remilia's rather short tempered while Reimu's infamous for going berserk upon her shrine getting damaged.
[x] Mori Clan
[x] Toyosatomimi no Miko
[x] Kyouko Kasodani

Hopefully you're cool with writing some of the newer characters. This looks interesting.
Closing the polls now - here are the final tallies:

V1: Clan Choice

V2: Arrival Damage
Byakuren H.IIIIIII
Kamishirasawa K.I
Hakurei R.II
Scarlet R.I
Toyosatomimi M.I

V3: Finder
Toramaru S.I
Yoshika M.I
Kasodani K.IIIIII
Nightbug W.II
Aki ShizuhaII

Honestly, I was hoping that people would go for the 'ninja' option. To my knowledge we have few, if any practitioners of the shinobi arts. But I felt I had to be fair and let people have some choice.

Anyhow, I just hit upon an idea that I think people will love. Don't worry, this is gonna be one fun cluster-F.

Also, I guess I should have mentioned it sooner, but while Buddhism is recognized amongst the clans, Animism is more widely practice (hence each clan having a totem animal).

That is hilarious. I'm gonna have to see if I can squeeze that one in for extra laughs.

Oh no. We're just building alliances here. The romantic interest is yet to come.

It's cool. Newer characters means that the fannon on them is fresher, so it's harder for me to 'screw up' on their characterizations.

I'm gonna try and write tonight. With any luck I'll be posting tomorrow night.
I only mentioned that as people were thinking as such (voting only because they wanted to see a touhou or get in their pants)

Don't you know? When a Touhou loses their hat, they die.

The Fiend!
it's probably a good thing we didn't vote to crash into the Hakurei shrine. Reimu would've probably instakilled us.
Chapter's written and preread. Revisions will happen later tonight, hopefully followed by posting. For now, I need sleep before I go into work.
File 133257241059.jpg - (1.92MB, 1500x2000, 1075c71fb7e51b3805d676efd4d96159.jpg) [iqdb]
[X] Mori Clan
[X] EVERYONE'S PLACE GETS HIT! (Reimu, Remilia, Keine, Byakuren, and Miko)
[X] Kyouko Kasodani finds him

Excuse me while we go into 3rd person perspective here... little Arcus isn't awake yet and there's story to be told! Also, Aya fans forgive me. I'll be sure to give her a lot more love later on.


A lot of incidents occur in Gensokyo. Some are pretty minor ("Come back here with that book, Marissa!!!") while others are major events (like that UFO treasure ship). So far, on a scale of one-to-ten, Reimu would rate this at a solid ten.

It had started out as any other day. Clean the shrine, check the offering box (nothing), do a bit of painting, check the offering box (still nothing), eat lunch, check the offering box (still nothing, dammit). After she slammed the lid of the box down in disgust the sound of thunder reverberated through the sky.

At first, Reimu thought it may have been dry lightning. It had been dry enough lately, and a lightning strike could have disastrous consequences in the middle of Summer. taking to the air for a moment, she scanned the land all around, looking for signs of smoke.

She never saw any. Sighing, she figured that it must have been Aya doing that whole business with flying faster than sound can travel. Honestly, Reimu had no idea how it really worked, but it was apparently possible if you could fly that fast. How the chatty Tengu could pull it off was anyone's guess. Nonetheless, Aya will be getting an earful the next time Reimu saw her; she'd been told more than a few times that the sound it made frightened people, especially in the hottest part of Summer when the sound was easily mistaken for that of dry lightning.

That would have been the end of Reimu's concerns, except that a huge, oddly curled piece of scorched metal came scything down through the sky and carved a hole through the roof and the floor of her shrine.

Reimu's eyes went wide at the wanton destruction that befell her shrine.

Inside, she could hear the panicked cries of Suika and the cackling of Mima, but she didn't care - her shrine had a hole in it.

She made the sloppiest landing she had ever made since she learned how to fly, but she didn't care - her shrine had a hole in it.

It was only when she was inside surveying the damage that the numbness finally began to fade, only to quickly be filled with a smoldering rage. It only needed a prod in the right direction to make it boil over. Suika, carefree as she was, knew better than test Reimu's temper at a time like this. Instead, someone else was fated to be the unfortunate victim.

"Ayayayayaya," came a familiar voice from the front end of the shrine. "I see it got you, too!" There was a click from her camera's shutter, followed by the ratcheting sound of her winding the film.

Reimu slowly turned to Aya with a smile that could only be described as 'Stepford'. Darkness seemed to close in on Reimu and an unholy light shined in her eyes.

"Aya, how nice to see you," said Reimu pleasantly. Aya faltered at the sight. "I'm certain that this isn't a social call, so why don't we talk about what you know, eh?"

"Oh! Lookitthesun!" said Aya rapidly as she began to backpedal her way out of the shrine. "Igottafly - gottadeadlinetokeepyouknow! Ayayayaya-GRK!"

Reimu's right hand had snapped out and clamped down firmly around the Tengu's neck.

"RiGhT nOw," snarled Reimu, her voice oddly distorted.

"...sure thing," wheezed Aya.

The details were spare but apparently something similar had happened to Remilia's mansion, Keine's school house, and the Myouren Temple. Privately, she took some joy in the fact that their temple had suffered such a setback as well, but that was beside the point.

But the most important part was that at the Myouren Temple, the object that landed there was some sort of metal egg that had some person inside it.

Someone was responsible for this, and Reimu was ready to make them pay through the nose.

When Reimu got to Myouren Temple things got strange enough that she forgot that she was angry. The stone steps leading up to the temple had been utterly destroyed. It was as though some Oni with a trowl the size of a tree had carved a furrow down the middle of the steps. That furrow continued a few more meters down the path at the bottom of the steps, leading to a scorched and battered metal egg. Curious about the object, she peered inside. There was a seat of some kind with a lot of straps hanging over it - just big enough for one person.

Reimu already knew what she was in for by the time she got to the top of the hill, but she was still a bit taken aback to see a heated argument going on between Toyosatomimi no Miko and Byakuren Hijiri.

Standing aside were Keine Kamishirasawa and Remilia Scarlet, who kept herself shaded with her parasol at all times. Oddly enough, Sakuya wasn't there to hold it for her. Though, once Reimu thought about it, it made sense that Remilia would leave her most trusted aid behind to perform damage control.

Remilia noticed Reimu first and greeted her cordially.

"Welcome to the party," she said in a low tone.

"How long has this been going on?" pondered Reimu out loud.

"Not too long," said Keine. "They haven't gotten to the part where one feels insulted by the other and demands satisfaction through Danmaku."

"I see," said Reimu, frowning. "Any idea what's going on? I could only pump Aya for so much information."

"Not surprising," sighed Remilia. "Kyouko had to threaten Aya with deafening her sense of hearing if she didn't leave. Wouldn't have done the boy much good having her snoop around."

"Boy?" Reimu blinked. "What 'boy'?"

Keine sighed. "Kyouko Kasodani found a child in that thing - a boy. I saw him. He couldn't have been older than ten years."

"It doesn't help that Byakuren seems to have taken a shine to the little guy," added Remilia. "I think I heard her say something about some Myou-person. Must have been someone close to her, because this is the closest to real anger I've ever seen her."

The three were silent for a moment while they watched the two religious figureheads bicker. Had it been a play in a theater, Reimu would have started munching on a bucket of popcorn.

"So..." said Reimu, breaking the silence, "I heard it got you, too."

"Took out the wall to my sitting room," replied Remilia with a curl of her lip. "To say that I'm displeased right now is an understatement. This boy will be lucky if he doesn't wind up on my dinner plate."

Keine gave Remilia a look, but decided to let it go for now. "The bell tower on the school house is gone. It's gonna cost me a small fortune to have it fixed and I'm not sure what I'm gonna do. How about you, Reimu?"

"I got a hole in my roof and the floor underneath," she answered with a hint of bitterness. "It's a mess, but it looks like I got lucky - whatever that thing was it missed all the frames."

"And we've seen what's happened here," added Remilia. "Makes me wonder what happened to Miko's place that's got her so riled up."

"I was here before anyone else," said Keine. "From what I heard when she got here, total destruction."

Reimu gasped and turned a shocked look at the scholar. "You're kidding!"

Keine shook her head. "Nope. Her place is a dojo, remember? It's not exactly all that sturdy - just enough to keep the roof overhead. Hit it just right and the whole thing comes down. She's lucky no one was hurt."

"Wait a minute," said Reimu as she was suddenly hit with a bit of fridge logic. "Isn't she in some sort of pocket dimension thing? There aren't many ways to get in there, and none that I know of from above."

"I was thinking the same thing, now that you mention it," said Remilia. "How much do you want to wager that a certain Old Hag had a hand in this?"

"No bet," replied Keine, rolling her eyes at the thought. It would be so typical if Yukari Yakumo had something to do with the situation.

And with that, they lapsed into silence once more, and just in time to hear another even-spicier-than-before exchange - only this time it seemed Byakuren was finally through with playing nice and was firing back.

"Look Miko, if you're as pro-Human as you claim to be, then how about you give the child a break!"

"What?" said a very surprised swordswoman. "He's a Human? But there's no way a human could have done something like what he did to my dojo!"

Byakuren smiled. "If you don't believe me then why don't we go and see him. Eirin is tending to him right now, so you can be assured that he is Human."

The magician then turned to the others. "Reimu, Remilia, Keine, you may as well come, too, since you're all involved as well." The school teacher, shrine maiden, and vampiress all exchanged looks at each other. Reimu shrugged and the three followed after the pair.

After a short walk through the temple grounds and to the living quarters, they reached a door that was guarded by Unzan. The cloud-like being moved aside and allowed the party to enter the room.

Inside the room, Ichirin Kumoi stood guard as well. Hovering on either side of the bed in the room were Kyouko Kasodani and Nazrin. Kyouko was tending to the boy, changing a wet rag that one of Nazrin's mice youkai was supplying a replacement for. Nazrin herself was directing said mice, her dousing rods set aside for now. Eirin Yagokoro sat at a desk in the corner. On the desk was a strange device colored black and white. It had a glowing white light at the bottom and some strange little windows perched on tubes poking upwards from the top.

In the bed was the boy in question, his head a mess of unruly salt-and-pepper colored hair. He looked Japanese, but it seemed a bit off. It was almost as though he had several foreigners in his family tree.

"Kyouko, don't forget to give him water," chided Eirin. "Gently. It's critical that he does not become dehydrated." She then turned her attention to the device on the desktop, putting her eyes to the little windows on top.

"How is he, Eirin?" asked Byakuren.

"A strange and fascinating case, Byakuren," replied the medical professional. "His wounds are healing at a phenomenal rate, it's almost as though he wasn't Human."

"Hah!" barked Miko.

Eirin looked up, giving Miko a sharp look. "Almost, I said. His blood is, without a doubt, that of a Human."

"How can you tell?" asked Miko suspiciously.

"I used a few simple tests. Human blood will react differently to certain chemicals than a Youki's blood will. But that's not the most interesting part. He has something like tiny machines in his blood. It's hard to make out, even with a microscope as powerful as this one, but they are there. His blood is rife with them!"

"Wait, how can you see these machines?" asked Miko.

"This device I'm using," answered Eirin, gesturing to the machine on her desk. "It's called a microscope. It works like a powerful magnifying glass, though this one isn't as powerful as the ones I used back on the Moon."

"Tiny machines?" pondered Keine. "But how is it possible? The smallest I've ever seen is a wrist watch."

"I'm not sure myself," replied Eirin, "but the medical implications are astounding. With something like this you can rapidly knit wounds back together without sutures. Even splints and bandages would only be needed for a moment."

"So," said Reimu, thinking hard on the matter, "you mean that these tiny machines are healing him from the inside? And that's why he's healing so fast?"

"Exactly," replied Eirin.

Reimu shuddered as she imagined thousands of tiny devices crawling through her innards like ants in a colony. "That's actually kinda creepy."

"And disgusting," said Remilia as she pulled a face. "I can't even imagine what his blood would taste like with crap like that in there."

"It'd probably be downright poisonous for you, Remilia," said Eirin, her face down on the microscope again. "They seem to attack foreign material that doesn't belong. If you tried to drink his blood, not only would you be left with a bad taste in your mouth, but it would probably kill you. Like a particularly nasty strain of Ebola virus."

"Ebola virus?" asked Keine.

Eirin winced. "Trust me, you don't wanna know. Fortunately, it seems that once they leave his body they quickly stop working. Usually within about five minutes."

"So, he is human then," said Miko. "Although a very strange one at that." She then whirled on Byakuren. "If he is human then he must have parents to claim responsibility. We should find them at once."

"I agree," said Byakuren mildly. "And what if we cannot find his parents? What if he is an orphan?"

"Surely he must have guardians of some sort," scoffed Miko.

Byakuren sighed. "I hope so, Miko. Otherwise I feel that all of us have inherited more trouble than we'd like to have."

"What?" cried out Remilia in shock. "Us? responsible for that brat?"

"Have you looked in a mirror lately?" snarked Reimu. "Oh wait, I forgot. You vampires don't have reflections."

Remilia shot a venomous look at Reimu. "Mind yourself, Human. You may be fun to play with now and then, but I may as well decide to have you for a snack next time we fight."

"STOP IT!" boomed Kyouko suddenly. With everyone's undivided attention, she went on at a normal volume, "You're gonna disturb him too much. He needs his rest!"

"And you need to mind yourself!" hissed Eirin angrily.

Kyouko turned bright red and then hurriedly went about changing out the towel on the boy's forehead.

Eirin the turned to the rest of the group. "All due respect to the rest of you, he's not in any condition for this. I would appreciate it if you all left. I'll let Byakuren know if anything changes." She then turned to Nazrin and Kyouko. "You two as well. I can take care of the child myself for a while. No need for you two to crowd him."

Without any whim on Byakuren's part, Ichirin slid open the door for them. Not needing any other invitation they all shuffled their way out and the door slid back closed again.

Miko sighed as they walked down the veranda once more. "I must be on my way, anyhow. Contractors to arrange for and everything. I'll see myself out if that's fine with you." Byakuren nodded and Miko took her leave, marching straight for the exit.

"Well," said Reimu afterwards. "I don't think I've ever seen Miko that worked up before. You know, Byakuren, I honestly thought she was gonna start throwing Danmaku while you two were arguing earlier."

"Hard to blame her," said Remilia airily. "After all, I clearly remember how you were when your shrine collapsed."

Reimu seethed at the reminder. Only for a moment though.

"Well, whatever that child's story is we definitely won't know until he wakes up," said Keine.

"It could be a while," pipped up Nazrin. "He may be getting better, like Eirin said, but his fever isn't going down still. Fortunately, it's not going up, either."

Byakuren bowed to them all. "Thank you, all of you, for doing what you can."

"You'd do the same for us, Lady Byakuren," said Kyouko.

"Thank you. For now, though, can you two check on Shou and see if she needs any help with anything? With all that's been going on she's been left to fend for herself."

"Yes ma'am," answered Nazrin. Kyouko and Nazrin both bowed and went on their way.

Byakuren then turned to Keine, Remilia and Reimu. "Would you walk with me?" Not having anything better to do, the three followed Byakuren down the veranda. It was a bit odd for them to see - at first, while Miko was around Byakuren had been defensive, almost combative even. But now that Miko was gone it was as if a weight had been lifted from her shoulders.

After a long moment, Byakuren finally started to talk. "Like Eirin said, she should be able to manage on her own. I'll trust her to do what's best for the child. Though from what I've seen I don't think there's much left to do except to make him more comfortable. You know, it was such a huge shock to see his arrival. But actually finding him inside that thing... I don't know for sure what was even more surprising."

"You're rambling, Byakuren," said Remilia in a sing-song lilt. "Is there something you're not telling us?"

Byakuren stopped, halting the procession. "It shows that much? I guess his arrival here has been throwing everything out of balance. I saw him open his eyes just once. And in his eyes, I saw those of my dear, long deceased brother."

"Reincarnation?" wondered Reimu. "Not that I doubt it, but isn't it some kind of miracle he reincarnated here in Gensokyo? People don't usually fall from the sky during reincarnation. That's an old wives' tale." Reimu suggestively eyed Byakuren as if to insinuate something.

Byakuren gave the much younger girl a sour look. "Being reincarnated here in Gensokyo instead of in the outside world would be like trying to hit a bulls-eye the size of a pinhead on a target the size of a house. Of course, there is also what I fear the most."

"That he -is- an outsider," stated Keine.

"Correct. That egg thing that he came down from the sky in... it's like nothing anyone's ever seen. I already asked Nitori to look at it."

"And?" asked Reimu.

"She said she had to go get more tools. Apparently she wants to tear the thing apart where it stands instead of moving it back to the Kappa Community. I asked her why and she said something about meddlesome colleagues.

"Anyhow, outsider or not, I won't know if he is the reincarnation of my brother until I've at least spoken with him for a while, so I'm trying not to hope for too much."

"Well, I wish you luck then," said Remilia. "Believe it or not, I understand how important family can be to another person." There was a brief silence at that before Remilia continued, "I need to go now. Like Miko, there are things that I must take care of if the Mansion is ever to be repaired. Good day, ladies." And then, opening her parasol before stepping out of the shade of the veranda, Remilia took her leave.

Sighing, Keine said, "Sounds like as good an idea as anything. Byakuren, if you would please let me know when he wakes up?"

"I promise you, you'll be one of the first outside this temple to know."

"Thank you. Until then."

"And then there were two," said Reimu as Keine left. "You know, I'm kinda surprised that a fight didn't break out. We're all pretty strong personalities despite our religions."

"I'm just relieved it didn't come to that," said Byakuren, and she really did look it. "I don't think I could have tolerated any more of a disturbance than there already has been."

"You and me both. Incidents around here tend to get out of hand once one of us gets involved. But just between you and me..." and with this Reimu's expression turned conspiratorial. "Keep an eye out for weird stuff. I got a feeling that this is far from over."

Byakuren sighed. "And I have a feeling you're right. There's not much we can do, though. We'll just have to feel this one out."

"Yeah. So... when he does wake up..."

"You'll be the next to know after Keine."

"Thanks. I gotta admit, I'm curious about the little guy now. It's gotta take some serious guts to ride something like that... thing."

"I can't even imagine it and I once rode of a flying -ship-!"

Reimu laughed at that. "Well, I better get going, too. My shrine won't fix itself after all, though it'd be nice."

"Okay, see you later then, Reimu."

"See ya."

With Reimu gone, Byakuren sighed once more as though feeling the weight of all Gensokyo had came to rest on her shoulders. "Why me, Lord Bishamonten?"


No vote right now, just another update to come. Maybe in about a week. Will say that this has been a fun learning experience, and any suggestions on characterizations are welcome.
wtf? did i miss something major in the votes? why did ALL the areas take damage? was the vote to signify the extent of the damage to each place or what? I AM CONFUSED!
You're not complete crap, and I sincerely hope you'll get better, but that was kinda...

Areas to work on include your punctuation - for example, you're not using commas where they should go, making sentences read like run-ons.

Another thing is your style - it feels almost like reading a slightly less repetitive Dick and Jane (though the prologue wasn't as bad in that regard.) I also can't say I'm down with third person omniscient, I liked the first person better. Perspective is really your prerogative, though.

If you don't have a proofreader, get one. Every body makes mistakes, and they can also point out awkward wordings and stuff.

You definitely have ideas, and interesting ones, and you can probably become a damn good writer if you're willing to put in the effort.

Damn I guess I should give up my proofreading career then, huh?
Well, it was more in case they didn't already have a proofreader. I couldn't tell whether he had one, or went through it himself, or just wrote neatly. I just think everybody should have someone else read what they write in case they miss something.

And after an afternoon nap, the comma usage seems grammatically correct, but I do still think that they would make the sentences feel less run-on-ish.
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Okay folks, got the next update written. I need to proof read it and I'm not doing that until I get some sleep. After that, it's pre-reading time. Anyone that wants to volunteer can PM me in the chat channel - I usually keep my client running in away mode. After pre-reading, I gotta do revisions, followed by another round of proof reading and pre-reading. Repeat as needed.

Q&A Time!

No, you didn't miss anything. I had the sudden inspiration that it would make things that much more interesting if every character that got voted for house damage did get nailed. Arcus is literally being shot-gunned into the setting. Yukari's watching from a safe distance and eagerly awaiting hilarity. Let's not disappoint her, eh?

Well, the dick-and-jane thing... It's tough to write smooth prose without taking time to polish it up real nice. Now, I know that some of you guys are used to stuff taking months to update, but I'd rather not do that. You see, I've learned recently that it's best to just write and then go with what you've got - try not to mess with it too much and don't sit on it for too long. Otherwise, the more you keeping reading through it the more flaws you keep finding. The point is to tell a good story and that doesn't happen if you sit on it.

I'll do what I can about my style, but bear in mind it's not going to change overnight.

And I'll work on those run-on-ish sentences.
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Here we go, folks. Back into 2nd Person POV Land!


Like someone had flipped a switch you find yourself awake.

And aching all over.

And hot.

And sticky.

Great Alpha, you need a bath.

A good scouring followed by a near-scalding soak.

You just have to get up and get yourself to the family bath house... Oh, that's right, you think to yourself as you look at the unfamiliar ceiling. It all comes back to you now. The goodbye you gave your mother and father, the transport, the ambush, the dimensional weapon, the escape pod...

And now, this.

Even so, you need to get up and get moving. Your nanomachines can do a lot, but they can do a lot more with your body helping them to move waste byproducts out of your body. And the best way to do that is to -move-.

Preferably to whatever they use for a toilet around here.

"Ah, good. You're awake."

You turn to the voice's source and find an attractive white-haired woman with an archaic nurse hat cheerfully at clash with a harlequin outfit.

Fortunately, you are very well disciplined for a child your age. Your father, Lord Kail, was very strict on this point. So naturally, you say the first thing that comes to your mind.

"Where am I?" Tactical awareness is the key to any situation.

"You're at the Myouren Temple." She places a device in your ear and you hear a click. She then checks the device and nods. "At least your fever is gone."

"Where is the Myouren Temple, ma'am?"

The white haired woman blinks at this. "Why, it's on the steps of Youkai Mountain."

This is starting to worry you, so you come right on out and say it. "Ma'am, forgive my impertinence, but what -planet- am I on?"

The woman is troubled by this statement. "Oh dear. You really are an outsider, aren't you?" You almost ask what she meant by that, but she continues, "You are in the land of Gensokyo, a small portion of Earth that was sealed away from the rest of Humankind a long time ago."

"I'm on Old Terra?" you ask in amazement.

"'Old Terra'?" the woman parrots in puzzlement. "What is that supposed to mean?"

"In the great war of 2352 the surface of Old Terra, then called Earth, was rendered uninhabitable by the overuse of nuclear weapons. Radioactive particles inundated the water sheds and oceans, causing a never ending cycle of irradiation of the land. This lead to the Diaspora. No one has lived there since."

"But... nothing like that has happened!" says the woman. "In fact, the year is 2012."

And then it hits you. "The dimensional weapon!"

The nurse blinks. "The what?"

"Its a weapon some people use. It opens temporary holes in the space-time continuum and pulls ships through them. Most people don't survive because their ships are either destroyed in the process... or the universe they land in won't support life as we know it."

That troubled look comes back. "That sounds... hateful."

"It is." You then realize that you've made a breach of protocol that cannot stand any longer. "My name is Arcus Kail of the Mori Clan. May I have the pleasure of knowing your name, ma'am?"

The woman smiles. "What a polite little boy. My name is Eirin Yagokoro, but you may call me Eirin."

"Thank you, Eirin, for taking care of me. I'm glad to have met someone as nice as you." At that moment, your bladder reminds you that it -really- wants to be emptied. Now. "Ah, Eirin... I need to go pee."

Eirin smiles in amusement, but is quick to help you out of the bed, and then guide you to a small room with a hole in the floor.

"I understand that it may not be what you're used to, but please try to bear with me on this. At least it's better than a chamber pot." With that, Eirin leaves you to your own devices.

You've heard about this from your history lessons - before there was proper sewerage, people would dig holes to bury their feces. In places like Japan, this evolved into people having a room with a channel of flowing water running beneath it - a very primitive example of a 'flushing' toilet. This room was such an example. You just hope that water pollution around here isn't a big issue.

After finishing your business in the water closet, you feel pounds lighter and unimaginably relieved. Opening the door you find yourself to be alone. Eirin must have thought you'd spend more time in there and went to take care of something. She will probably be back soon to check on you.

You decide it may be a good idea to go back to your room. You have no idea of whether or not you're allowed in other parts of this Temple. Besides, the room seems like a good enough place to perform some light calisthenics. It's the only way to beat the toxins out of your muscles without the help of a therapist.

Besides, they stripped you out of your flight suit so you're standing out here in your underwear.

Back in your room, you start out with a series of stretches to prepare your muscles for a workout. You take your time with it because you are painfully stiff. As you work through stretches that are normally painless for you, you reflect on your injury reports and the event logs from your escape pod.

You did not get off easy. In all you had multiple spinal compression fractures, fractures in all your extremities, fractures of the tarsals and metatarsals, fractures of the phalanges, dislocated shoulder, ruptured spleen, hiatal hernia, pulmonary contusions, dislocated cervical vertebrae, multiple muscle sprains, subdural hematoma, and unconsciousness due to head injury.

Great Alpha be praised, you're lucky to be alive! If the inertial dampeners hadn't done their job then you would have been liquefied outright on impact.

And then there's the event logs. There were some outrageous fluctuations in the radar-altimeter readings. The things are solid-state - built to be indestructible. They simply do not fail. You know because you've seen someone from the Ueda clan perform a demonstration by beating on one with a sledgehammer.

You're not certain what could have caused such huge variations in your altitude, but the only thing that comes to mind is that you may have traveled through several dimensional holes. This would have maintained you velocity while changing your altitude and causing your braking rotor to deploy suddenly.

At the speed you were going when the rotor deployed it's no surprise that the blades began to sheer off.

But if it was additional dimensional holes... then what caused them? Are dimensional weapons really that chaotic? The few people that have survived such weapons never said anything about it.

A knock at the door breaks your reverie.

"Come in, please," you say as you get up from your stretch.

Eirin enters the room, and this time she is not alone. With her is another attractive woman with the most striking hair - it is wavy and the color starts out as purple at the top of her head, but slowly fades to a light brown at the small of her back. She is wearing an odd long sleeved black and white dress with knee-high tabi socks. She also has white ribbons wrapping her socks and the sleeves of her dress.

But the thing that held your gaze was her eyes - they look like yours! Same color and everything!

"Arcus Kail, this lady here is Byakuren Hijiri. She is the proprietor of this temple and you're her honored guest."

Minding your manners as you were taught by your mother, you bow respectfully to Byakuren.

"Thank you very much for your hospitality, Missus Hijiri."

"You are quite welcome, Arcus," replied Byakuren as she returned the bow. "But please, don't call me Missus Hijiri. It makes me feel like an old spinster woman. You can call me Byakuren, but if you feel you must be formal, then you can call me Lady Byakuren."

You smile at that. No matter what your parents did, there is that little spark of mischief in you, and you do love to play harmless pranks on people or even tease them openly... at least when you can get away with it. But still, Byakuren seems like a very nice person, so you'll be nice to her in return.

"Yes, Lady Byakuren."

"Good! There are many things going on, Arcus, and many people that would like to talk to you. Unfortunately, not all of them are going to be happy to see you."

This does not sound good to you. Why in the Great Alpha's Name would they be unhappy to see you? If what you've heard is true they shouldn't even know you... Unless... maybe you have a dimensional counterpart here? You really hope not!

Still, you need to ask just to be sure. "But why is that, Lady Byakuren?"

Byakuren sighed at that. "Unfortunately, that egg you arrived in caused a lot of damage when it arrived. It seems that pieces of it broke off and hit other peoples' homes."

Egg? What 'egg' is she talking about... Unless... "Oh! Begging you're pardon, Lady Byakuren, but that's not an egg. It's an escape pod."

Byakuren tilts her head at you. "An escape pod?"

"Yes, Lady. We use them to escape from a doomed ship. Mine was attacked by an enemy of my clan just before I arrived here."

"I see," said Byakuren thoughtfully. "Do these escape pods always go up into the sky?"

"Ah..." You try to think of a quick and simple way to explain something like this. "It's because our ships are special. We use them to travel between the stars."

"oh dear," murmured Eirin. "Byakuren, I'll explain things later, but for now just trust the boy on this matter."

Byakuren gave Eirin a perplexed look. "Very well then, Eirin." She then turned to you once more. "Arcus, we'll talk more about this later. For now, we'll get you cleaned up. Kyouko?"

"Yes, Lady Byakuren?" A girl steps into the doorway. She looks like she's fourteen and has short, wavy, teal colored hair. You're starting to wonder if these strange and unheard of hair colors are common place here in Gensokyo. She carries a bamboo broom in her right hand and wears what looks like a pink cheongsom of some kind, only the buttoning flap doesn't go all the way to her side. Instead it wears more like a double-breasted coat. The clasps are small teal flower ornaments.
On top of that, she had something that looked like dog ears near the top of her head. They even twitched a bit.

"I want you to make sure that Arcus, here, gets a proper bath. Be quick about it, though. We have guests coming."

"Yes, Lady."

"And Kyouko?"

"Yes, Lady Byakuren?"

"After you do that, please change the poor boy's bedding."

"Of course, Lady Byakuren." The girl named Kyouko then turns to look at you and smiles. "Come along then, kiddo. We don't have much time."

"Ah wait!" you say as suddenly something occurs to you. "What about my clothes? I never retrieved my bag from the escape pod."

"Already taken care of, Arcus," says Kyouko with a grin. "I've had a change of your clothes waiting for just this occasion."

You blink at that. These people are -very- nice. "Thank you, miss Kyouko."

Kyouko titters. "Stop that, you're gonna make a girl blush. Now let's hurry."

As soon as you're out the door Kyouko latches onto your wrist and starts to practically drag you down the veranda at high speed to what appears to be the bath house. Once inside, you're a bit surprised to see Kyouko starting to take her clothes off.

Really, among the clans it is considered improper to go running around without clothes on - otherwise who could tell what your rank was? But otherwise, your body is nothing to be ashamed about and communal bathing was one of the few times a person can really let their hair down.

In the bath house rank does not matter. Only respectful treatment of each other, for the shedding of your clothes denotes a shedding of boundaries and equalization of the people.

"Ah, you're bathing with me, Kyouko?" While you're starting to pick up on the informality of this place, the bath house is the only place you're really comfortable with it.

"Why not?" says Kyouko cheerfully. "After all, Lady Byakuren told me to make sure you get a proper bath. Besides, we can scrub each other's backs."

"Ah, thank you Kyouko."

As you shed your underwear, Kyouko suddenly grins and says, "Oh! Let's see what you have down there!" And then, before you can react to this completely unexpected attack, her hands dive -down there-!

"GAH! Kyouko! Leave that alone! I'm -not- your husband! Nor are you my mother!" And how! It is an unspoken law that, besides a proper physician, only a wife or a mother may examine a male's genitals... and then only those of her husband and sons.

Kyouko cackled wickedly as she withdrew her fingers. "Well, at least everything down there is how it's supposed to be. You seem to be a very healthy boy."

"Of course," you sniff. She had absolutely NO BUSINESS DOWN THERE. "My mother made certain of that."

Kyouko's grin got big enough to split her face. "I think your dad had something to do with that as well, kiddo."

Okay, this wasn't funny to begin with, now she's just being downright mean.

"Kyouko, please stop. Among my people we respect each other's bodies as blessings from the Powers That Be. There is no shame to be taken or given in what the Powers have gifted us with."

Kyouko's eyes went wide with surprise. "Ohhh, so it's one of those religious things? Don't tell me you guys aren't allowed to have sex outside of marriage."

You can feel your face heating up as you sense what she is getting at here. "Not really, but for someone like me it would be frowned upon."

"Oh? What makes you different?"

"I am supposed to inherit my father's position as clan head. That means that my marriage will be arranged with another clan - it would probably be a daughter of the head of an allied clan."

"I see. So it's an honor thing, huh? Can't be giving your body to a bunch of floozies because it's destined for a very special girl, right?"

Your face feels incandescent by now. You're pretty sure you're actually casting light.

"yes," you reply in a small voice. "in a nutshell."

"Okay then, I can respect that. Now let's get ourselves washed up, okay kiddo?"

"Thank you," you say with honest relief as you begin to wash up. "I really need this. I'm so very sore right now, so a hot soak will be perfect."

"Lucky for you we had the water good and hot already. Eirin said it wouldn't be long until you woke up and a bath was one of the first things you needed. You certainly smell like you need it."

"Ugh," is all you have to say in regards to that last jab - she's right, you smell nasty.

Personal contact is kept to a minimum from here on out, even when you take turns scrubbing each other's backs. Soon enough, you are easing yourselves into the hot bath water.

You let out a long and unintelligible noise of gratitude and relief. Kyouko squeals with delight, her ears flapping so fast that you thought she might take flight.

That brings back your earlier curiosity about those ears.


"Yes Arcus?"

"I don't mean to be rude... but are those your ears on top of your head?"

"What?" says Kyouko, blinking in confusion. "OH! I get it. You're from the outside so you probably don't have youkai out there."

"Youkai? You mean you're a..."

"Yep! Specifically, I'm a Yamabiko."

"Really? I learned about them in my history lessons. I thought they were supposed to be hairy little ape-like creatures."

"Hey! You saw for yourself - the only hair I have is where a proper lady should have hair. Up here and down there!" As she points down to the space between her legs, your eyes unavoidably follow the gesture, revealing a small, thin patch of teal hair.

"Like what you see?" taunts Kyouko.

You sigh as you give Kyouko a pleading look.

Kyouko returns a somewhat annoyed look. "Oh, what is it, Arcus? You're gonna have to get used to the fact that you're stuck here in Gensokyo - you got nothing to worry about anymore."

That doesn't ring true to you. "But I'm not stuck here. Anyone one of my people that survives an attack with a dimensional weapon can be rescued if they deploy their rescue beacon."

"A beacon?"

"Yes. It can send a signal through interdimensional space. My people can trace it back to its source, like following the light from a light house."

"And your people can come here?"

"Yes. They can open passages between other dimensions. They usually don't because it's caused trouble in the past, so they only do it to rescue people that were lost."

Kyouko looks thoughtful about it. "Huh. Well, I apologize. I thought it was going to be an absolute thing for you. Kinda wish it wasn't. You're pretty cute now, but I can tell you're gonna be a nice catch later. For now, though, I think you need someone to watch over you... little brother." She then leans over and before you can even blink she gives you a kiss on the cheek. She giggles as she settles back into her spot and you're positive that you're going incandescent once more. "Oh little brother, whoever you wind up marrying is gonna be one lucky girl. She'd better treat you like the treasure you are."

"Kyouko!" comes a voice at the door. "Are you two done in there yet? Keine and Reimu are already here!"

"Just getting out now, Nazrin," Kyouko calls back as she gets out of the bath. Her earlier question about liking what you saw came back to you. Privately, you had to admit to yourself that she really was an attractive girl... even with the strange ears and funny little tail. As Kyouko begins to dry off she turns to address you. "C'mon little brother. They're already waiting on us. Get dried off and I'll get your clothes."

"Thank you... big sister."


Sorry, still got a few more scenes to write before you guys get to vote. For one thing, we haven't even met our Big Bad Guy yet! Stay tuned, folks...
No choices again? Do you know how many opportunities for character development you wasted in this update? Maybe you think that MC shouldn't be secretive, not trusting and emotionally scarred, but not giving a choice:

[ ] Trust Eirin and tell her everything about yourself.
[ ] Be careful and don't trust her. Make something up.

is shoehorning MC's personality. Same for interaction with Byakuren, taking a bath with Kyouko (simple yes/no choice), reaction to her inappropriate touching (make a joke/punch her/run away/RAPE/anemia option).

Meaningful, clear choices to vote for in the next update, please.

inb4 Palingenesia, which was a different story type, and was on a whole different level of narrative quality.
So basically Kyouko's got a shota fetish.

...Huh. I can live with this.
This is rather interesting. First, >>34287 says that I'm not giving enough character development between votes, and we have you who says that we don't have enough voting. I'm definitely in the camp where an author should listen to the fans, but this is a bit much.

Anyhow, I'm not gonna bother explaining, because as they say in politics if you're explaining then you're losing. Just have a bit of faith in me - the next time we see Arcus there will be a vote.
You again?

Votes are not your God-given right.
But bitching is.
>>34287 here.
I'm afraid we may have a misunderstanding. I'm not saying there's not enoug characterization, I'm merely saying that, in my opinion, we should know what kind of person the main character is before voting for the first time.
Bleh, what a weekend.

Not a terrible amount of progress lately, but we do have ourselves a villain. No worries, folks. After hammering out the details with my prereader, I'm fairly certain that he'll be utterly detestable. Fun part: unless he's interacting with Arcus most of his story will be told through his own journal entries.

Later this week I'll get some writing done and hopefully have it posted sometime near the weekend.
>Later this week I'll get some writing done

Sorry guys. I'm not dead yet. Had a lot going on here on my end this month, but it looks like the worst is behind me for now. Which means that it's time to get back into the groove.

I already have the next installment written and I'm just waiting to hear back from the first prereader.

Also, something I've been remiss in doing... I wouldn't have been able to get any of this done without the help of another author here at THP, who writes In The Forest, A Dancing Light. I'd also like to thank the regulars in the chat channel that have helped me with proofreading. You guys have been a big help as well just catching the spelling and grammar errors. At least the workload will be easier now that I'm running Office 2010.
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Okay, that didn't take long! Say hello to our big bad - he's a real piece of work, I think.


Journal Entry 42

I finally did it. I devoured the soul of that bitch of a youkai. Best of all I finally got to rape that body of hers. With her soul gone I didn't think it would keep breathing for long. However, it's still breathing, even now. I wonder how long it will last if I feed it fresh milk and water? It'll be nice to keep it around as a toy.

It's been nearly a year since those wenches, Kirisame and Knowledge, dropped the very book they were fighting over onto my head. Fortunately, they never even noticed they dropped it. And I have been mastering its contents ever since.

The technique I used on that demonic bitch, Monica, allowed me to devour her soul and take her power. I can't describe what a rush that was! All her power coming into me, and the absolute terror on her face as the light left her eyes. Her fear! I could taste it! It was so delicious!

And now I won't be her plaything anymore. Not ever. Instead, her body will be my plaything until I get tired of it.

The other skill I gained was to capture someone else's soul within a gem. I used the only jewelry my parents had to turn them into my willing servants. No more will I have to hear that fat bastard taunting me. No more will I have to bear that bitch complaining about how useless I am.

Now I am free. Free of that youkai. Free of my parents. I can do whatever the hell I want.

And with this new power, all Gensokyo will be mine...

...except that I need to deal with that Gap Demon. She won't allow me to have free reign. I need to devour her soul, but I need to be more powerful to do that.

I'll need an army. Going against her by myself will be a mistake. All she needs is one lucky shot and I'd be done like a duck dinner. So instead of devouring the souls of the intelligent youkai, I will enslave them instead. I'd love to see that Gap Bitch fight off that many people throwing Danmaku at her all at once.

And once I've devoured her soul, I can do the same with my slave army.

Even so... I must have a contingency plan.

I've heard much about this Chronicler of Gensokyo - the Ninth Child of Mirare, Hieda no Akyuu. The little bitch is waited on hand and foot, and all she does is write history every day. She's never had to lift anything more than a calligraphy brush and I absolutely despise her for that.

I will take her soul and her power to reincarnate. For certain, I will have to sire a child, but once I have enough slaves that should not be an issue.

For now, though, I must build my power. To remain unnoticed, I'll start with all the wild youkai in the forest, as well as enslaving all the neighboring farmers and their families. I don't think I'll get much power from devouring their souls anyway - they're more use to me as slaves.

Once I'm strong enough, I'll enslave as many of the intelligent youkai as I can, and then Akyuu will have no defense against me.


Apparently, Kyouko provided you with the clothes she is most familiar with. This being your good kimono and everything that goes with it.

With a sigh, you quickly begin to dress yourself, taking only as much time as needed to make yourself presentable. Fortunately, there is a mirror here. Surprising, that given the tech level you've seen so far.

This gives rise to more thoughts about how things seem to be at odds in this place, like how Eirin seemed to completely understand you and yet this place has the rustic feeling of Ancient Japan.

You don't have much time to reflect, though. No sooner than you're dressed does a girl's voice, the same one from before, comes calling.

"Hey, you done in there yet, kid?"

This time, the owner of the voice stuck her head in. She has ash-gray hair and mouse-like ears that twist to and fro like active satellite transceivers. Her simple dress is dark brown with a blue-gray caplet. A pendant with a faintly luminescent blue gem hangs from a chain around her neck just underneath the caplet.

"You're name is Arcus, right?" she said as she strode in. You nod and that's all she needs as she then latches onto her hand and drags you out of the bath house.

This seems to be happening a lot.

"I'm Nazrin," said the mouse youkai - the ears and tail are a dead giveaway. "Just Nazrin, nothing else. I'm an assistant to Shou Toramaru - she's the head Priestess here. Right now, there's a whole bunch of people here, and more on their way, and it's all about you, kid. Honestly, I feel bad for you because you're gonna be dealing with a lot of strong personalities."

Lady Byakuren's words come back to you. "People are already arriving? But why so quickly?"

"Don't people fly where you come from, kid?"

"Well, yes. But I was given the impression that the technology here was not that advanced."

"Only the Kappa seem to have advanced technology. Everyone else around here that flies does it with magic."

Wait, WHAT? "Magic!?" you cry out in surprise.

However, you don't get a chance to say any more as you're dragged into another building and forced to sit down.

At least you're made to sit on a cushion.

In front of you is Byakuren. On her left sat Eirin. On her right side is a woman with blonde hair with black highlights and a lotus-shaped hair ornament. Her burgundy dress had huge white sleeves, and a leather-belted section under the waist with an apron-like cloth that had a tiger-stripe pattern. Her skirt ended with an orange section, with the border between the orange and burgundy parts forming a decorative pattern. A long, red spear sits at her side.

With her amber eyes she peers at you with the intensity of a tiger. "So, you're the mischievous boy that's caused all this trouble."

You feel your face go red at that. "I didn't want to cause any trouble! My transport was attacked and I was automatically ejected."

The young woman was taken aback and Byakuren lays a hand on her shoulder.

"Shou, the boy has been through a hard time. Please try to be a little less blunt with him."

"Of course, Byakuren." She then turned to you again and said, "My name is Shou Toramaru. You've probably heard about me from the others, as I have heard about you, Arcus Kail, heir to the Mori Clan."

Of course, this is where you bow respectfully. "It is my pleasure to meet you, the head Priestess of this beautiful temple."

Shou returns the bow with a chuckle. "Mischievous, yet polite, and a flatterer. You had better be careful, Arcus. Because if you survive what is to come next you're going to have all the girls beating a path to your door."

"My mother and father say things like that all the time. I don't really get it, though."

Shou and Eirin titter and snicker. Byakuren simply smiles in a way that can only be described as 'loving'.

"Don't fret, little Arcus,” said Byakuren. “You will understand some day." You put on your best pout for that - like most boys your age, you don't really like being called 'little', even if it’s true.

"Anyhow," continued Byakuren, "we're simply waiting for the rest of the concerned parties to arrive. Once they do, Nazrin will show them in and we can start this hearing. However, before we begin, we would all like to learn a bit about you, Arcus. We've already heard that you're the heir to your clan and that you come from a place that, like Eirin's former home, has access to advanced technology. We don't necessarily wish to know more about that aspect of your life. We are, however, very interested in the circumstances surrounding your clan and your life."

That's a tall order. There's a lot to tell, there, and while you have the instinctive sense that you can trust this woman and her confidantes implicitly, you also have the sense that you have little time to do it in.

So, what do you tell them about?

[ ] Your immediate family
[ ] The alliance and the clans within it
[ ] Your enemies and why they are against you
[x] Your enemies and why they are against you

This is the least likely to reveal potentially dangerous information about the Alliance to these random people in this random dimension.
[x] Your immediate family

The rest will probably become irrelevant at great speed.
[x] Your immediate family

This seems more interesting.
[x] Your immediate family
[x] Your immediate family
[X] The alliance and the clans within it
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Okay, calling the votes here. And it looks like we got a nice little introspective of Arcus's family for the next update, with possible footnotes on the alliance and their enemies.

After that, you'll learn more about our hero's fate at the hands of the Touhous. Stay tuned...
Combination of work and play has me slowed down on the update this time around. We have a ten day long festival that's in full swing, and work has something to do with it, so don't expect the next update for a week or two.
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Sorry folks. The last few weeks have been absolute insanity. The family drama that's been going on here would make for great television, let me tell you. No, that's not an exaggeration in any form. Anyhow, now that most of the drama is behind me, I'll get back to work on Littlest Yojimbo ASAP.
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