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File 157266951083.jpg - (125.49KB, 850x1117, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_homo_1121__sampl.jpg) [iqdb]
42276No. 42276
“Hey. Say something. Please?” She appeared before him with the wind gently fluttering her billowing pink dress. She brushed aside a stray hair from her eyes, and the girl smiled, her emerald eyes smiling with her.

The man would, but there was one small problem in the way: He was, in the most literal sense, mute.

[ ] Hand motions are simple enough to explain.
[ ] Mouth the words. She should understand.
[ ] So he engaged in interpretive dance.
Expand all images
>>No. 42277
File 157266960978.png - (89.96KB, 1242x787, don't tell me what to do.png) [iqdb]
42277
He said I wouldn't do it, but he forgot that I'm a fucking idiot.

In any case, here's a story that aims to update every day. But I'm going to try and constrain it to less than 100 words per update. Woohoo, Nanowrimo.
>>No. 42278
[X] So he engaged in interpretive dance.

The only reasonable answer.
>>No. 42279
[X] So he engaged in interpretive dance.
>>No. 42280
[x] So he engaged in interpretive dance.

I thought An Excuse For A God was your entry for the Nanowrimo. Is this going to be another of those shitposts that grow into a full fledged story?
>>No. 42281
[x] So he engaged in interpretive dance.
>>No. 42282
>>42280
Yeah, but I had to prove Teruyo wrong.
>>No. 42283
>he forgot that I'm a fucking idiot.
Counted on that, actually.
[x] So he engaged in interpretive dance.
>>No. 42284
[x] Mouth the words. She should understand.
Never can start a story without shitposting, can you?
>>No. 42285
[x] So he engaged in interpretive dance.

pose on the dog
>>No. 42286
[x] So he engaged in interpretive dance.
>>No. 42287
File 157272966950.jpg - (91.87KB, 850x1202, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_namauni__sample-.jpg) [iqdb]
42287
So he danced. The man did a leap, twirl, and flourish. As he landed, Kigaku cupped his ears and hunched closer to the ground, almost tripping over the temple steps as he did so. Then, in the finish, he put a hand over his mouth and threw imaginary words to the floor, stomping them into oblivion.

The girl clapped, eyes alight with giddiness. “Ahh! I get it! You’re one of those ‘mime’ things!”

The man nodded curtly. It didn’t address the problem, but for Kigaku, it was good enough.

“Oh, exciting! I woulda never dreamed of getting to see one of them in person! Can you show me something cool? Mimery, and whatnot?”

Then, Kigaku was suddenly put on the spot.

[ ] He improvised.
[ ] Upon seeing his acquaintance, he signed for help.
>>No. 42288
[x] He improvised.
Night at the improv
>>No. 42289
[x] He improvised.
>>No. 42290
[x] Upon seeing his acquaintance, he signed for help.
/help
>>No. 42291
[x] He improvised.
>>No. 42292
File 157275677369.png - (404.42KB, 639x750, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_asa_coco__70d6f1.png) [iqdb]
42292
Kigaku improvised.

Though he felt rather foolish for keeping up with the act, it was better that than to futilely attempt to explain to the girl that he held no tongue.

So he set his arms ahead of his body and, gripping an invisible rope, he pulled. The air cooled, as it always did when Kigaku used his divine power. The girl, who was giggling to herself prior, lurched forward—straight to Kigaku. Despite the man taking into account her tiny frame, the girl was… admittedly lighter than he thought.

[ ] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
[ ] Kigaku let her be caught by her master.
>>No. 42293
[x] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
>>No. 42294
[x] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
>>No. 42295
[x] Kigaku let her be caught by her master.
Party trick
>>No. 42296
[x] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
>>No. 42297
[x] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
An Excuse for Echodog
>>No. 42298
>>42297
*An Excuse for Yahoo!
>>No. 42299
[x] Kigaku caught her in his arms.
>>No. 42300
File 15728220839.jpg - (416.99KB, 850x1160, __hijiri_byakuren_touhou_drawn_by_natsushiro__samp.jpg) [iqdb]
42300
Kigaku would have let the girl fall into her master’s arms, but he had two problems: One, he was in the way, and two, he feared that the girl would trip over cobblestone. So instead, he compromised and held his arms out to catch her.

She sank into Kigaku’s thick gray robes, heading face-first into his chest. The feeling was pleasantly warm, and the man had half a mind to stroke her hair, but he refrained.

The girl yelped and set herself aside at arms-length from the man. “Um, thanks,” she said. “But at least take me out to dinner before you do that.”

“Already getting along, you two?” Hijiri, entering the temple grounds, put a hand up in acknowledgment. Allowing herself a reserved smile, she added, “I presume you’ve already introduced yourselves to each other then?”

[ ] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
[ ] Kigaku nodded for brevity’s sake.
>>No. 42301
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
uhhhhh wordier
>>No. 42302
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
The truth shall set you free.
>>No. 42303
[x] Kigaku nodded for brevity’s sake.

:ok_hand:
>>No. 42304
[ ] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
>>No. 42305
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
>>No. 42306
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
>>No. 42307
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
>>No. 42308
File 15728470766.jpg - (59.05KB, 850x654, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_yoruny__sample-f.jpg) [iqdb]
42308
Actually, we haven’t yet,” Kigaku signed.

“Oh, no? Then I am glad that you two are already on such good terms. Kyouko,” Hijiri said gently, motioning to the man. “This is Ametsuchi Kigaku. He is our esteemed guest I’ve been telling you about, so please take care of him.”

“Aye-aye—wait, ‘take care of him’?” The girl, Kyouko, swiveled around to face Kigaku. “Does—um—does that mean—?”

“It does.” Hijiri stroked the girl’s hair. “As you may have figured, he is unable to speak. So all the training you have done to learn sign language will finally bear fruit.”

“Ah, okay! Good, because I thought you meant—” The girl froze. “Sign. Language?”

“Sign language,” Hijiri said. She curled all her fingers, save for both of her indexes, and rotated them around each other. “Sign language,” she reiterated.

“...Sign language,” Kyouko said, dully repeating Hijiri’s motions. “Yes.”

“Good. Now, please provide accommodations for Sir Ametsuchi. He shall be staying with us for an extended period of time. Kyouko.” And before excusing herself into the temple, Hijiri spoke, a low strictness in her voice, “I expect you not to inconvenience our guest in any way. Understood?”

“Understood,” she repeated, nodding frantically.

As the head priest disappeared, an uneasy silence stood between Kigaku and Kyouko.

[ ] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.
[ ] Kigaku, doubtful of the girl’s credentials, mouthed to her, “Are you able to sign?
>>No. 42309
[x] “Actually, we have yet to,” Kigaku signed.
>>No. 42310
[x] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.
>>No. 42311
[x] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.

I can feel the :kyoukowhine: surely approaching.
>>No. 42312
[x] Kigaku, doubtful of the girl’s credentials, mouthed to her, “Are you able to sign?”
>>No. 42313
[x] Kigaku, doubtful of the girl’s credentials, mouthed to her, “Are you able to sign?”
do you even sign sis
>>No. 42314
[z] Kigaku, doubtful of the girl’s credentials, mouthed to her, “Are you able to sign?”
well?
>>No. 42315
[x] Kigaku, doubtful of the girl’s credentials, mouthed to her, “Are you able to sign?”

It's only polite.
>>No. 42316
[X] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.

Might have to whip out the ol' pen and paper
>>No. 42317
[x] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.
>>No. 42318
[x] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.
>>No. 42319
[x] Kigaku thought introductions were in order.

Called before another tie happens.
>>No. 42320
File 157291867977.jpg - (1.07MB, 1080x1260, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_tada_no_nasu__76.jpg) [iqdb]
42320
Kigaku thought that introductions were in order. If Kyouko were to be his translator, then he may as well be as personable as he could to the girl.

It is a pleasure to meet you, miss. I am A-me-tsu-chi Ki-ga-ku. It is a bother signing my full name, so please remember my shorthand as—” He moved his right hand, its index and middle fingers pointed outward, below his left, which was held flat. Then, moving his hands back, he drew two parallel lines with his left and right. “—This. If you have a namesign, Kyou-ko, then feel free to share it with me.”

“Thank you?” She smiled, though the light creek in her lips betrayed her nervousness. “I mean, um, yes. Thank you.”

Kigaku lifted his eyebrows. Kyouko averted her gaze once he started motionlessly staring. If he were not mute, then he would have said that the silence was stifling. He stared at Kyouko until he felt obligated to say something. So then he signed, “I suppose you don’t have one.

“Y-You too,” she stammered out, fluster tinging her cheeks.

Kigaku chuckled breathlessly. The conversation was hilariously one sided, and the girl’s embarrassment amused the man, so he offered her one more chance. “If you don’t have a name-sign, then I shall call you as this, Kyou-ko.” He extended his thumb and pinky, using his thumb to brush his nose. “’Silly,’ it means, since you probably do not understand me.

“Gah.” She slumped over in despair as Kigaku’s incessant signing filled her with remorse. “You’re making fun of me, aren’t you? Yeah, as you might’ve realized, I… don’t know a lick of sign language. I may have, um. Forgot to learn it.” Her teal eyes clouded over in misery. “Lady Hijiri will have my head if she finds out. So—esteemed guest. Lovely, handsome, Ametsuko Higaku. Could I… earn your silence? Somehow? Someway? Yes?”

[ ] “Yes,” he mouthed slowly.
[ ] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.
>>No. 42321
[x] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.
Yes to ambiguous conditions that could range from quirky to exploitative that no one else will vote for.
>>No. 42322
[x] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.

You thought wrong.
>>No. 42323
[X] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.

Wag your goddamn tail.
>>No. 42324
[x] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.
>>No. 42325
[X] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.

Some paper and pen, for one thing, just in case we can't get something across through interpretive dance.
>>No. 42326
[x] “Yes,” he mouthed slowly.
>>No. 42327
[X] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.
>>No. 42328
[x] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.

I look forward to her reaction to her name-sign.
>>No. 42329
[x] He deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but on a few conditions.
>>No. 42331
File 157293628548.jpg - (238.45KB, 2000x2119, the many stages of the kyouko cycle.jpg) [iqdb]
42331
Kigaku deliberated on the matter, and he would agree—but he required something more than just goodwill.

I have a few conditions—” he began to mouth but was cut-off halfway through.

“...Say that again?”

I have a few conditions,” he said again.

Her ears perked up, as if she had awakened to a jolt. “Whoa! Say more words!”

What, like this?

“I can hear it. I can hear you! It’s a little faint, so I need to focus in on it, but I can hear your voice!” Kyouko took the man’s hand and swung it up and down with both of hers. “Isn’t this amazing? Aren’t I amazing? Yahoo, Yamabikos are revolutionary, breaking the barriers between communication!” Then, blushing, she sheepishly let go of Kigaku and brushed aside a stray lock of hair. “Um. Sorry. Now, as you were saying?”

Kigaku did not respond—the man lost track of his thoughts. He collected himself—never did he imagine that anybody would be able to hear his voice again. How long had it been since he held verbal freedom? Far too long, he thought to himself.

“Sir?”

Her voice prompted Kigaku to gather his words. “In any case, I shall keep quiet, but I have several conditions.” It was amusing to Kigaku to see how quickly Kyouko could go from jumping from joy to despairing and back again. “The first is that you will have to learn to sign. I can’t in good conscience lie to Hijiri, so you shall study the language, and let her be none the wiser.

Kyouko nodded sagely. “It’s only fair. And the next condition?”

Learn my name. It is not ‘Ametsuko Higaku.’ It is Ametsuchi Kigaku. A-me-tsu-chi Ki-ga-ku,” he mouthed, signing for emphasis. “In any case, it is nice to meet you.”

“Yes!” With a beaming smile, she extended out her hand. “It’s Kasodani Kyouko. And likewise, Sir Ametsuchi.”

And Kigaku, quelling his conflicting emotions, took her hand.
>>No. 42332
As you may have guessed, I broke my self-imposed rule of 100 words or less. In fact, I broke the rule several times already. So, going forward, I'm just going to say that I'll try adhering to the rule... and if I don't, then no harm, no foul, no sharks sicced on me.
>>No. 42333
sharks just got buffed though, if we don't use them now when will we use 'em?

Not like I'll complain about having more story to read though.
>>No. 42334
>>42332
How DARE you give us more story to read? More content? Are you mad?
>>No. 42335
File 157301077891.jpg - (339.77KB, 1181x1748, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_ameyu_rapon__15d.jpg) [iqdb]
42335
“So I’ll be translating for you?” asked Kyouko as she led Kigaku to his quarters. She had no qualms leading him by the hand. Kigaku mentally took note that, while endearing, the yamabiko had little reservations about physical contact. From what he had remembered, people of Buddhist faith, or at least in the past, were taciturn and demure—and Kyouko was anything but.

Yes. To those that do not know sign language or can hear me as you can, communication proves to be tedious. Writing is slow and ineffective, especially so when the other person may not be able to read, and motioning and pointing only gets one so far. Having someone to speak for me makes two-way communication much easier.

“Must be tough. Playing charades must get tiring after a while. Ah, here we are.” Kyouko, taking a sharp right at the end of the temple hallway, opened the door to the guest room. The room was austere, but it was much like how Kigaku had imagined a Buddhist room to look like. Aside from the thin white cot and a single-person desk, the rest of the room was devoid of ornament and furniture. “You can leave your stuff here.”

Kigaku, though, owned only the clothes on his back, so he lifted his arms to show this.

“Ah, that’s it? Alrighty then.” Kyouko was not as surprised as Kigaku thought she would be. Perhaps, after living in the Buddhist temple, the lack of material possessions was not anything out of the ordinary. “So what now?”

The man held spare time before he needed to reconvene with Hijiri in the evening, so…

[ ] Kigaku had business with the Moriya—provided they were still around.
[ ] It had been far too long since Kigaku has last seen Toramaru.
[ ] There was mention of a village not too far from the temple. Kigaku wished to visit there.
>>No. 42336
[x] It had been far too long since Kigaku has last seen Toramaru.
>>No. 42338
[X] Kigaku had business with the Moriya—provided they were still around.

fuggin frogs
>>No. 42339
[x] It had been far too long since Kigaku has last seen Toramaru.
>>No. 42343
[x] Shorts? In a temple? He had to know more about this curious ghost.
fuck the rest Cap'n route
>>No. 42344
[x] There was mention of a village not too far from the temple. Kigaku wished to visit there.

Kosuzu?
>>No. 42346
[x] It had been far too long since Kigaku has last seen Toramaru.
>>No. 42349
File 157309385827.jpg - (91.94KB, 432x600, __toramaru_shou_touhou_drawn_by_tomobe_kinuko__62e.jpg) [iqdb]
42349
It had been far too long since Kigaku has last seen Toramaru. Since Hijiri was unsealed, that must have meant Toramaru would be around as well. The man wondered how she fared—it had been many years since they’ve addressed each other.

Toramaru Shou,” Kigaku said. “Do you know where she could be?

“Oh!” Kyouko perked up, ears lifting up in attention. “I think she should still be around the temple grounds. Do you want me to fetch her?”

No need. I’ll come with,” he said, and so he did.

Toramaru proved to be easy to find—she stood tall in the center of the temple grounds, seeing off the few humans that visited. Her figure was striking—even as her shoulders laxed, letting her golden curls fall listlessly down to the base of her neck. She stared into the amber sky with two golden but weary eyes that shone against the afternoon light, and with great breath, she sighed.

“Um, Shou?” Kyouko said. “There’s someone to see you.”

“Oh!” She returned at attention and turned stiffly to welcome her guest. Her eyes widened, and she let her jaw slack as she saw who her visitor was. “Wait a second. Could it be? Kigaku?” Quickly, a boisterous smile rippled through her lips. “Hoh, Kigaku! Well I’ll be! So Byakuren finally got you out too. And here, I thought I’d refrain from drinking today. Just your luck, since I've fulfilled my daily obligations. Come now. We have much catching up to do. Hey! Naaaazrin!” she bellowed. “Ready the sake! The nice one!”

Sake, so she said. The man raised a question in his thoughts.

[ ] “Does Hijiri allow you alcohol?” Kigaku said.
[ ] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.
>>No. 42350
[x] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.

Drink
>>No. 42351
[x] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.
Don't think. Just drink.
>>No. 42352
[x] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.
>>No. 42353
[X] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.

Do not drink. But don't stop her from drinking.
>>No. 42354
[x] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.

Drink!
>>No. 42355
[x] Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter.
>>No. 42356
[x] “Does Hijiri allow you alcohol?” Kigaku said.

This tide will drink my piss the same way Shou will drink her booze.
>>No. 42357
File 157317778065.jpg - (93.19KB, 560x756, __toramaru_shou_touhou_drawn_by_chabi_amedama__319.jpg) [iqdb]
42357
Kigaku refrained from asking—whatever Toramaru’s answer was, it did not matter to him.

Shall we head inside, then?” he mouthed.

Toramaru and Kyouko both stared at Kigaku in silence, so the man threw an anticipatory glance back at the yamabiko.

“Oh, right!” she said, finally realizing. “Sir Ametsuchi said to head inside.”

That was not what I had said,” he gently chided. “Kyouko. I asked, ‘Shall we head inside?’ The nuance is different, and you should recognize that.

Before Toramaru misunderstood, Kigaku signed what he had said to the priest.

“Shou. Um, I think what he said was—”

“—That what he meant to say was, ‘Shall we head inside?’” Toramaru placed a hand on Kyouko’s shoulder and gave her a knowing look. “Don’t worry. I am well aware.”

The girl let astonishment stick to her face. “You know how to sign?”

“I do.” Toramaru allowed herself a nostalgic smile. “And I’ve known how for a thousand years or so. Now let’s get inside. The wind is picking up, and Nazrin must have the alcohol by now.”

The three of them, soon four, retired to Toramaru’s personal living space. The room was about as spacious as Kigaku’s, but it felt less so since the priest’s personal effects decorated the area. Most notable was the low-rise lacquered table that laid as the centerpiece. They sat at its sides, all beholding the unopened bottle of sake and its neatly stacked cups in the center.

Nazrin leaned forward to open the bottle and poured two cups—one for Toramaru, and one for Kigaku. The priest took the cup, returning a quiet thanks to her subordinate. As the Toramaru sat back down in seiza, the she let her eyes fondly rest on the man.

“Kigaku, my friend. It has been far too long. I worried that, after all these years, you’d return in a colored urn! But I suppose that if we were able to unseal Byakuren, then we could… unseal…” Toramaru started a smile but dropped it immediately. She was no longer staring at the man, but at Kyouko. “Kigaku,” she said darkly. “Does she already know?”

“Know?” Kyouko quipped. “Know what?”

Toramaru paled. “Oh dear. I let it slip. Kyouko, pretend you heard nothing and return to your room. And do not think about anything I’ve said.”

“Huh? Wait, what? Why?”

“Because—” she started, glancing over to the man. “Well… in the end, I guess it’s up to Kigaku to decide.”

[ ] He let Kyouko stay—his past was no secret.
[ ] He told her to leave—it was for her own sake.
>>No. 42358
[x] He let Kyouko stay—his past was no secret.
>>No. 42359
[x] He let Kyouko stay—his past was no secret.
>>No. 42360
[x] He let Kyouko stay—his past was no secret.
>>No. 42361
[x] He let Kyouko stay—his past was no secret.

Shitpost time is over, now it's the moment to reveal our dark, tragic backstory.
>>No. 42362
[x] He told her to leave—it was for her own sake
protecc
>>No. 42366
File 157326869081.png - (1.07MB, 1325x1438, __nazrin_touhou_drawn_by_dokomon__395c5dfe42c8b100.png) [iqdb]
42366
She may stay,” Kigaku signed. It mattered not whether she, or anybody else for that matter, was there. His past was of no importance, so there was no significance in keeping quiet about it. “Kyouko,” he emphasized her namesign, “and anybody else who wishes to know may know.

Toramaru traced Kyouko’s namesign. “Silly,” she signed with her hands, a boisterous smile creeping up her face as she did so. “Now that’s hysterical. That’s what I call Kyouko too.”

“You call me what now, Shou?” The yamabiko said, a hint of spite laced in her voice. The girl did not appreciate being left out of the conversation, especially due her own lack of education.

“I’d tell you, but where’s the fun in that?” Toramaru took a slow drink from her cup. “You’ll figure it out in due time—maybe when you finally finish learning how to sign, hmm?”

“Well, I—you—!” Kyouko stammered. “…Don’t tell Lady Hijiri.”

“As long as you keep quiet about our little rendezvous with alcohol, my lips are sealed,” Toramaru chuckled. “But enough about that. Instead, let’s focus on the man of the hour! Kigaku, my friend, how does it feel to be free?”

Kigaku put the sake cup to his mouth and sipped. “It has been far too long, Toramaru. I thought I would never see the light of day again. That mirror they bound me to—inside only held blackness. I lost count of the centuries that passed, but it was more than an eternity to me. When Hijiri told me of her time in Makai, I only felt envy. I would have taken even that over the soulless void they imprisoned me to.

Kigaku nodded to Kyouko who, despite her eyes widening, faithfully repeated his words verbatim.

Toramaru sank deep into thought, mindlessly drawing a circle with her index finger along the lip of her cup. Her sharp, golden eyes briefly flicked to the man before settling back on the bottle of sake, looking at the alcohol crossly. But the priest shook her head in disgust and poured for two. “If only you could have been unsealed earlier.”

I am still lucky. After all, I could have remained sealed until the end of time.

Kyouko repeated Kigaku’s words, albeit doing a double take right after.

“...No. That’s not true. If Byakuren hadn’t already unsealed you, then I would have. This is known,” Toramaru said. “Isn’t that right, Nazrin?”

“It would have been done as obligation.” The mouse lowered her steely red eyes. “As restitution to what our followers did to you.”

It’s in the past,” Kigaku said, Kyouko echoing.

Nazrin sighed. “I still think about it—what they did to you, prophet. Just remembering it reminds me of the guilt I bear as a follower of Bishamonten. Please, if there’s anything I can do to repay my guilt, let me know.”

Kigaku did not fault any of Bishamonten’s disciples, and he had planned to tell that to the mouse, but Shou quickly shook her head when the man looked to her for help. “Just indulge her,” she signed.

[ ] Kigaku wished to hear Nazrin play the lute again. He remembered it fondly.
[ ] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.
>>No. 42367
[X] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.

Peer pressure. We're a bad example.
>>No. 42368
[X] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.
>>No. 42369
[x] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.
>>No. 42370
[x] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.

Drink
>>No. 42373
[x] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.

Booze
>>No. 42374
[x] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should be the protagonist of this story now.
Okay, fine, I know I'm asking too much.

[x] Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking.
More Naz always.
>>No. 42376
File 157334400848.jpg - (37.12KB, 500x700, __nazrin_touhou_drawn_by_akagashi_hagane__0be56b84.jpg) [iqdb]
42376
Kigaku thought that Nazrin should join Shou and him in drinking, so he mouthed that to Kyouko.

“Sir Ametsuchi thinks that you should drink with them, Nazrin,” she translated.

“What!” The mouse furrowed her brow, discontent swirling in her eyes. “I’ll do no such thing, and especially not in front of my master. You are merely encouraging her to drink more.”

“And for good reason!” Toramaru hollered. “Come, Nazrin. Don’t be so pedantic and have a pour. Bishamonten himself will say nothing to discourage you from a drink or two. Plus, you could stand to enjoy yourself every once in a while. The last time I’ve seen you taste alcohol was with Kigaku—from all those years past. Since then, you’ve practiced abstinence and now, you’re like...” Toramaru motioned to Nazrin’s being. “...This.”

Nazrin looked at Kigaku with a weary gaze. “It’s your fault that my master has been in love with drinking for the past thousand years.”

“Ah, but for the past thousand years, all my drinks were poured in regret.” As she slowly appreciated her drink, Toramaru stared at her subordinate in reflection. “It’s different now. So, Nazrin, do have some. I insist.”

The room looked toward the mouse in expectation.

“Fine,” she relented and poured herself a cup. “But just this once.” Nazrin took her drink and, holding it with both hands, she downed the cup in one go.

“How is it?” Toramaru asked.

“Bitter,” Nazrin said, making a face of disgust.

“Is it now? It’s sweet to me,” Toramaru said, laughing.

Kyouko,” Kigaku called out, “why not try some too? I’m sure Toramaru wouldn’t mind.

“‘Kyouko, why not try some’—” the yamabiko mindlessly repeated. “—Who, me? Oh no, I can’t! I’m perfectly fine just watching, and Lady Hijiri’ll throw a fit if I have some. Really, I’m fine.”

If that’s what you wish,” he said and dropped the matter.

Kyouko breathed a sigh of relief. “Yes. And, Sir Ametsuchi, I know I’m being rude, but may I ask something?”

Go ahead.

“You are a youkai, right?”

[ ] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.
[ ] Kigaku was a youkai. There wasn’t much point in denying it.
>>No. 42377
[x] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.
Full-taboo route. Also, more Naz or I will frown very hard at you.

>“Bitter,” Nazrin said, making a face of disgust.

>“Is it now? It’s sweet to me,” Toramaru said, laughing.

le vinegar tasters dot picture scroll
>>No. 42378
[x] Kigaku was a youkai. There wasn’t much point in denying it.
>>No. 42379
[x] Kigaku was a youkai. There wasn’t much point in denying it.

We won't be playing the hypocrisy game as much as this crew.
>>No. 42380
[x] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.

Drink?
>>No. 42381
[x] Kigaku was a youkai. There wasn’t much point in denying it.

Denying your youkai nature is for hermits
>>No. 42382
[X] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.

We're not a youkai until we say we're a youkai.
Besides, all we've done so far is mime and live really long. Very human
>>No. 42384
[x] Kigaku was a youkai. There wasn’t much point in denying it.
>>No. 42387
[X] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.
>>No. 42388
[x] Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset.
>>No. 42389
File 157342053890.jpg - (230.64KB, 480x640, __nazrin_and_toramaru_shou_touhou_drawn_by_sayuma_.jpg) [iqdb]
42389
Kigaku was originally a human, and he still believed he was—at least in mindset. He had been human for his whole life until the time of his sealing, and after he was set free, the only change he felt was the passage of time. Still, he’d serve the followers of Bishamonten, and still, he’d remain true to his human self.

It is… complicated,” the man admitted. “You may consider me a human, though you have most likely already guessed that I do not have a more… mortal disposition. If you so wish, I’d be happy to elaborate at length—but that is for another time. For now, let us rejoice at this reunion,” he concluded, signing his last words to Toramaru.

“Rejoice!” Toramaru let out the kind of low, grating laugh that came from the back of the throat. “And may we be fortunate for the years to come.”

“Rejoice,” said Nazrin, still warily glancing at the sake bottle.

“Rejoice!” repeated Kyouko, clapping her hands in good mood.

“Hoh.” Toramaru leaned back and closed her eyes, letting a warm smile overtake her. “After all these years, I must have forgotten how alcohol should be enjoyed.”

“How?” prompts the yamabiko.

“In good company, Kyouko,” she laughs. “In good company.”



The evening wound down long after after the sake bottle emptied. Kigaku, even after years without physical form, did not let the alcohol flowing through his veins affect him. Toramaru kept herself collected too, but it was not an impressive feat for either of them—the sake, though fine, was little in terms of quantity. It was only the lightweight mouse that fell victim to the sins of inebriation.

Toramaru kindly let Nazrin retire to the her personal quarters, for Toramaru feared that the mouse wouldn’t return in good condition had she left the temple grounds.

With the night approaching, Kigaku bid Toramaru and her intoxicated subordinate farewell. He enjoyed the brief respite, but the man still had Hijiri to answer to.

Kyouko. We are adjourned for the day, so you may resolve your free time.

“That so? In that case, what are you going to do, Sir Ametsuchi?”

I have further business with Hijiri.”

“Oh, okay. Should I come with?” she asked out of politeness.

No need. The matter of discussion with her is personal, so I’d like you to refrain from joining.

“Oh, really? Shame.” she said coolly, though her eyes sparkled teal with relief. “I’ll see you tomorrow then, Sir Ametsuchi! Buh bye!”

Kyouko wasted no time departing. And the man, once he saw the yamabiko off, headed toward the head priest’s working chamber.

Hijiri was behind her low-rise table, kneeling over a large scroll in contemplation. Her violet eyes scrolled line after line without pause. As Kigaku entered, Hijiri’s eyes lifted and, slowly, grew into a more gentle gaze. “Blessings.” The woman nodded, the tips of her fiery hair shaking as she did. “Ametsuchi Kigaku.”

He found discomfort as she called him by his full name.

[ ] Hijiri should call him Ametsuchi, like in the past.
[ ] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
>>No. 42390
[x] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
Move on, cast off attachments, etc.
>>No. 42391
[x] Hijiri should call him Ametsuchi, like in the past.
>>No. 42392
[x] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
>>No. 42394
[x] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
>>No. 42395
[x] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
>>No. 42397
[x] Hijiri should call him Kigaku now—he held no authority over her anymore.
>>No. 42399
File 157351169033.png - (3.52MB, 1920x1920, __hijiri_byakuren_touhou_drawn_by_sam_ashton__a5c3.png) [iqdb]
42399
Please, call me Kigaku,” he signed. “I hold no authority over you anymore, Hijiri.

“I suppose you don’t. And forgive me, for I did not know what to call you myself.” The woman slouched slightly, giving pause to her words. Then, with a slight smile, she straightened her back and motioned to the man. “Do sit… Kigaku. You make me stiff just looking at you, what with you standing at attention.”

He obliged and sat at the opposite end. The table itself was no more than a worktop and so, the space to sit down was tight—and as he adjusted his posture, his leg brushed against her toes.

She paid his mishap no mind. “Kigaku. How do you feel after being unsealed?” Hijiri asked with a solemn tone, so the man figured that she was not asking him about his health.

Bishamonten is still by my side. If anything, the manifestations of his power have only grown stronger. However.” He temporarily put a hand to his throat. “You are well aware that I am… still limited.

“It matters not to me,” she affirmed. “Though, I’d appreciate it if you were not to quantify your own mislabeled ‘usefulness.’ I concede, however, that I do need you for my own pursuits. But, even if you had cast your powers aside, I would have unsealed you. It was only right.” The woman cast her gaze downward, her violet eyes darkening. “That being said, I shall ask a great favor of you in the future. But I shall not be asking you as the head priest of the Myouren Temple but as Byakuren Hijiri.”

I will keep that in mind.

“And—Kigaku.”

Yes?

“A moment.” Hijiri rose to her knees, leaning forward to Kigaku’s side of the table. She swept aside the scroll that was sprawled over the tabletop and anchored a hand to the cool wood. With her other hand, she brushed his black hair with her fingers.

...Hijiri. What are you doing?

“No, it’s just,” she murmured. “You say, you hold no authority over me. So, I just thought—” Hijiri broke away. “No, that was my fault. I let myself be swept away by my own want. Still, even now, you remind me of someone.”

Her brother, he thought.

[ ] Kigaku pointed out the differences between Hijiri’s brother and himself.
[ ] Kigaku did not press further.
>>No. 42400
[x] Kigaku did not press further.
lol brocon
>>No. 42401
[X] Kigaku did not press further.

I feel that it would only add to the inappropriateness (that's totally a word) of the situation if he were to continue that train of thought.
Better to just leave it be.
>>No. 42402
[x] Kigaku pointed out the differences between Hijiri’s brother and himself.

Surrogate incest is still incest, dudettes.
>>No. 42403
[x] Kigaku pointed out the differences between Hijiri’s brother and himself.

They aren't even related by blood so it's fine, right?
>>No. 42404
[x] Kigaku did not press further.
>>No. 42405
[x] Kigaku pointed out the differences between Hijiri’s brother and himself.
>>No. 42406
[x] Kigaku pointed out the differences between Hijiri’s brother and himself.
>>No. 42407
>>42402
No it isn't. I can tell because it's not hot.

[X] Kigaku did not press further
Still, rather impolite to press her about it, and I personally wouldn't touch the conversation topic of "dead man she loves" at all, incest or no. Bit awkward.
>>No. 42408
[x] Kigaku did not press further.
>>No. 42409
File 157362437694.jpg - (120.10KB, 850x632, __hijiri_byakuren_touhou_drawn_by_hajin__sample-5e.jpg) [iqdb]
42409
Kigaku did not press further. Hijiri would have gained nothing from his words, so the man kept silent, as he always did, and let the moment pass.

The head priest moved away, ears touched red with shame. “My deepest apologies, Kigaku.”

It is fine,” the man signed briefly.

Out of embarrassment, she deliberately advanced discourse. “Prophet of Bishamonten. I shall not ask you to perform any duties that you do not wish to do. It would be impudent of me to tell you to serve the very people that betrayed you. All I ask of you is to forgive our followers.”

I hold no grudges against those that had also served Bishamonten. Their fear overtook them; such is the nature of humans.

“I am sorry, Ametsuchi Kigaku.” It was Hijiri’s second apology, though this one was wrested from the depths of her heart. She kept her head lowered in sinfulness, as if she were the one who had permanently silenced him and kept him chained in purgatory. It was not her who was at fault, and the ones that were responsible for his captivity have long since passed away.

You do not need to be sorry, Hijiri. I am only thankful that you have saved me. As I see it, there is no reason for me to harbor resentment anymore, so lift your head.

“As you say it.” She raised her head, but the remorse still remained in her eyes. Again, Kigaku said nothing—even if Hijiri took no part in his sealing, she thought her followers’ sins to be her own.

Is there anything else you need from me?

“Kigaku.” Hijiri faltered, but the man allowed her to give voice to her words. “No, it is nothing. You are free to stay here indefinitely—in fact, I do insist. My followers—they are all well meaning people, even if they are a bit… rowdy. I promise you this: They will not betray you.”

I was never worried about such a thing. I shall trust them as Toramaru and Kumoi does.

“And before you leave.” Hijiri fretted, glancing worriedly to the ceiling. “Your aide, Kyouko. She was supposed to have mastered sign language a month ago, but I had mistakenly left her to her own devices. How was her ability? Did she cause you any trouble?”

[ ] Kigaku told Hijiri that Kyouko was able to translate for him.
[ ] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.
>>No. 42410
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.

Technically not a lie
>>No. 42411
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.
>>No. 42412
[X] Kigaku told Hijiri that Kyouko was able to translate for him.

So, prophet of Bishamonten, eh.
Help I don't know jack about him
>>No. 42413
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.
>>No. 42414
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.
>>No. 42415
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.

Neither are lies or necessitate outing that Kyouko did not learn sign language, so let's focus on the unexpected positive of having someone to "speak" with.
>>No. 42416
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.

She's still learning it, that was our deal (which we don't have to mention to Hijiri). But the fact that she can understand us anyway is worth mentioning.
>>No. 42417
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that Kyouko was able to translate for him.
Just affirm. Convo over.
>>No. 42418
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.

A prophet next to the living incarnation of his god? If all priests would be so lucky.
>>No. 42419
[x] Kigaku told Hijiri that it did not matter: Kyouko was able to understand him without sign language.
>>No. 42420
File 157371069212.jpg - (166.52KB, 850x592, __hijiri_byakuren_touhou_drawn_by_sam_ashton__samp.jpg) [iqdb]
42420
Her skill in sign language does not matter. The yamabiko.” Kigaku paused to demonstrate Kyouko’s namesign, to which Hijiri smiled at goodnaturedly. “She is able to understand me without it.

“Pardon?” Hijiri looked puzzled. “I do not quite get what you mean by that.”

She is able to hear what I say. ‘Like this.’” Kigaku mouthed the words as he signed. “Even when I do not possess a voice.

“That is rather remarkable. Could it be because she’s a yamabiko? Or is it something else?” Hijiri withdrew temporarily to her own thoughts. “Nonetheless, I am glad that fortune found its way to you.”

The man thought of Kyouko. He wondered if ‘fortune’ would be the right word to describe the girl, but in spite of that, he nodded in courtesy. He did, though, appreciate being able to speak to the yamabiko, even if it was synthetic.

“I believe Kyouko will be a good companion for you, and you for her. That I’m sure of.” Hijiri stared lengthily at nothing in particular. Then, she adjusted herself, returning the misplaced scroll to her desk. “I’ve stolen too much of your time, Kigaku, but you know already how long winded I am. You are free to leave. And have a good night.”

It is no trouble,” he signed. “Good night, Hijiri.

Kigaku took his leave from her chamber, and so he had the night to himself.

[ ] He wandered the temple interior to see if the yamabiko was still awake.
[ ] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
>>No. 42421
[X] He wandered the temple interior to see if the yamabiko was still awake.
>>No. 42422
[x] He wandered the temple interior to see if the yamabiko was still awake.
>>No. 42423
[x] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
>>No. 42424
[x] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
>>No. 42425
[x] He wandered the temple interior to see if the yamabiko was still awake.

Last I checked, I was under the impression this was a Kyouko shitpost story
>>No. 42426
[x] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
Seeing as she's rare enough around here, I'll take more tiger.
>>No. 42427
[x] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.

Interior voice punk girl will have her time on the spotlight again soon. For now, give me more Taiga!
>>No. 42428
[x] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
>>No. 42429
[X] He was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did.
>>No. 42430
File 15738024711.jpg - (568.24KB, 1413x999, __toramaru_shou_touhou_drawn_by_kieta__0a6a0647fb3.jpg) [iqdb]
42430
Kigaku was sure that Toramaru would be outside. She liked the cool, nighttime air as he did, so he went around the temple grounds to go see her. Sure enough, the man found Toramaru near the temple’s paved road. She was humming an empty tune, taking languid steps through the faint light of the lanterns.

The priest noticed the man walking, however quiet he might have been, and put up a hand in acknowledgment. “Kigaku,” she said. “How goes it?”

It goes well. I have just finished speaking with Hijiri.

“Good.”

We talked about the past, Kyouko, and my current affiliation with the temple. She told me something most unsettling about the last matter.

“Do tell,” Toramaru said, her interest piqued.

Hijiri told me that I do not have to perform my duties anymore. So I’d like to garner your advice.” Kigaku looked to the woman with helpless gray eyes. “If not my duties, then what do I do?

“What do you do?” she asked incredulously. Then, with a restrained nighttime laugh, she said, “You do whatever you wish. No longer are you shackled to the ties that bind. I fear that it’s been over a thousand years since you have enjoyed yourself. Why not go and see what has changed since you’ve tread on ground?”

I am rather reluctant. After all, the last time I decided to venture out, I was stripped of my voice,” Kigaku signed. When Toramaru threw him a sympathetic look, he clarified. “It was a joke.

“Oh, Kigaku.” The sympathy in her golden eyes remained. “You’ve had a thousand years to practice your humor, and still it’s drier than salted jerky. You and Nazrin should take classes.”

My humor is fine.”

“I’ve eaten meals funnier than your jokes.” Toramaru laughed to herself. “See, because they tasted funny. Ha!”

It was then that Kigaku wished that he had a voice to cut her off with.

“But back to the subject of the matter. You have no obligation to return as the Prophet, so why worry about the details? And I say this because, above all titles, you are my friend, Kigaku. Take this as a vacation where all you need to worry about is what you’ll be doing the next day. Now come here, you humorless scamp. Again, all you do is worry, worry, worry. Have some fun!” She quickly closed the distance between Kigaku and herself, putting an arm around his shoulder. Toramaru swung him around easily as she tunelessly sang, “Now, O~ Lo~ord, are we disciples. Now have we become Arhats, O~ Lo~ord! Sing it with me, Kigaku! But not too loud. We all know you have no indoor voice, but it’s nighttime, so do try and be respectful.”

He humored her with silent words. “One may charitably give food, soft and solid, clothing, drink, a place for sleeping and sitting, with clean coverlets; one may build monasteries of sandal-wood, and after furnishing them with double pieces of fine white muslin, present them.

“Beautiful! Perfect! Have you gotten better at singing?” Toramaru said merrily. “The whole province must be clapping because I can’t hear you anymore over the sound of the applause! And, forgive the pun, but that was divine! Bravo!”

I’ve had a thousand years to practice, after all,” signed Kigaku in good humor.
>>No. 42431
File 157388178637.png - (535.02KB, 840x840, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_kanitama_putyour.png) [iqdb]
42431
It was an unholy hour when Kigaku, the ex-prophet, woke up. To say that the sun kissed the horizon would be an exaggeration—it was so early that the sun and horizon haven’t even held hands yet. The world was enshrouded in a comfortable, silent darkness, and Kigaku falsely believed that it would remain that way.

He was incredibly wrong.

Kigaku was not a heavy sleeper. No, he lost sleep equally: The man was impartial to who or what made a sound. So on that day, Kigaku roused. The faint patter of feet lightly touching the polished floorboards was the first noise of the morning. He thought that was the end once it stopped. However, what Kigaku failed to realize was that it stopped directly before the door to his room. He was moments away from drifting back to sleep when he heard a second, more distinct sound. That time, he was painfully aware of what it was: It was the sound of his door opening.

GOOOOOOOOOOD MOOOOOOOOOORNING!” sounded the horn. Despite the girl being at the door, the noise traveled as if she were right next to the man.

He wondered that if he pretended to be asleep, she would leave.

“Was it not loud enough?” Kyouko worried. “Sir Ametsuchi, are you awake? Okay then, I’ll try again.” She cleared her throat, and that was enough for Kigaku to sit up straight with bloodshot eyes.

Today is a new beginning,” he signed out of habit.

“Today… um—today?” Kyouko murmured, doing half-motions with her hands. Her face then brightened as she said, “Ah! You’re right. Today is a good day, isn’t it?”

Close enough,” he mouthed. “Now, my lovable green-haired rooster. What are you doing?

She did a slight tilt of her head. “Waking you up? Shou says you’ve had a thousand years to sleep in, so I should go ahead and stop you from sleeping till lunchtime.”

Kyouko. What I’m about to say is very important, so repeat after me.

“Oh! I’m really good at that!”

I, Kasodani Kyouko, shall never attempt to wake Ametsuchi Kigaku before the sun rises ever again.

“I, Kasodani Kyouko, shall never attempt—hey, wait!” she said, pouting. “Shou said that if you try to stop me, then she’ll come in every day and serenade you with her biwa.”

Kigaku would rather be sealed again than to be subjected to that every day. “Fine. You may do so.

“Okay! So what are we gonna do today?”

For starters, I’d like to wait until the sun comes up. But after that is the real question.

[ ] Kigaku wanted to go the Human Village.
[ ] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
[ ] Kigaku wished to address the odd presence that watched the temple—one that stared with closed eyes.
>>No. 42432
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.

Hmm.
>>No. 42433
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
>>No. 42434
[X] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
>>No. 42435
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
>>No. 42436
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.

Ai-shi-teru
>>No. 42437
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
>>No. 42438
[x] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.
>>No. 42439
[X] Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.

I mean, seems like a good thing to do when arriving in the 'soak. Otherwise she might beat us up for no reason when she's trying to solve a problem.
>>No. 42440
[x] Kigaku wished to address the odd presence that watched the temple—one that stared with closed eyes.
uhhhhhh Mammyzoo?
>>No. 42441
File 157396505970.png - (70.72KB, 600x600, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_nakatani_nio__c6.png) [iqdb]
42441
Kigaku was required to introduce himself to the Hakurei shrine maiden.

By the wishes of Hijiri, the man was told to search out the Hakurei Shrine and speak to its miko. He was bound by the principles of the land—even if he were not youkai in mind… but by body and by spirit, he could be called as such. So to prevent any unneeded conflict, Kigaku would address the Hakurei and tell her that he meant no harm. Of course, Kigaku’s devotion to Bishamonten and the Scriptures would not let him harm a soul anyway, but this was not yet public knowledge.

We shall go visit the Hakurei Shrine today. I have some business there, and I need to introduce myself to its shrine maiden.

“You do?” Kyouko’s eyebrows dropped a notch. “Just between you and me, you have a high chance of getting beaten up if you go there and do that. And then she might beat me up for the hell of it, too!”

Hijiri said that if I do not introduce myself to her, then the Hakurei shrine maiden may ‘beat me up’ anyway by sheer coincidence.” Kigaku extended a comforting hand to the girl’s head, ruffling her hair. “But do not worry, for she shall not hurt us. This I swear.

“Even if I laugh at her if she trips over herself?” she said worriedly.

It would be in your best interests not to do that, but yes, I promise.

“Alright. Then, I’m counting on you, Sir Ametsuchi.”

The ‘Sir Ametsuchi’ is tiring, isn’t it? You may just call me Ametsuchi, or just Kigaku if you’d like.

“Really? I can?” Her teal eyes flickered side to side out of uncertainty. “I—I dunno. It seems like you’re on the same level as Lady Hijiri and Shou, so...”

You do call Toramaru by her given name, too.

“But Shou is Shou. She’s… y’know, just how she is.” Kyouko refrained from saying, ‘An honest idiot,” but Kigaku knew fully well what she meant.

At the very least, you should drop the ‘Sir.’ It’s a little too formal for my liking. After all, you are my assistant, of sorts.

“Yeah… I guess. But is it okay?”

It is fine,” he assured her.

[ ] Kyouko called him by his given name.
[ ] Kyouko called him by his family name.
>>No. 42442
[x] Kyouko called him by his given name.
>>No. 42443
[X] Kyouko called him by his family name.

No need to be more familiar than she's comfortable with right away. I admit I'm not very familiar with how quickly this Kyouko would use one's given name, since I know that's a big nip thing. We've only seen her interact with Hijiri, Toramaru, and Nazrin, all of whom have their own reason for how she refers to them (Hijiri is Hijiri, Shou is an idiot, Nazrin doesn't have a last name goddamn youkai), so I don't have a real gauge on how quickly she would use given names if general.
>>No. 42444
[x] Kyouko called him by his given name.
>>No. 42445
[X] Kyouko called him by his family name.

Murasa is just "cap'n", and Ichirin's "Unzan's hitbox".
>>No. 42446
[x] Kyouko called him by his family name.
Kyouko is a polite, well-mannered girl.
>>No. 42447
[x] Kyouko called him by his family name.
>>No. 42448
[X] Kyouko called him by his family name.
>>No. 42449
[X] Kyouko called him by his family name.
>>No. 42450
File 157405031788.jpg - (74.51KB, 850x411, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_wool_miwol__samp.jpg) [iqdb]
42450
The prophet and his yamabiko assistant flew across the crimson-blotched sky. All the while, Kyouko was murmuring to herself, anguishing over what to call the man. He told her not to brood over it too much, but the girl responded with a shake of her head, saying that “it was of utmost importance.” Kigaku still did not understand it despite being a regular occurrence to the man—in the past, regardless of his complaints, nobody had ever referred to him as just Kigaku, but as the “Great Holy Prophet” and attached as many respectful honorifics as they were able to. The only exception was Hijiri and Toramaru, and Nazrin, all for a variety of convoluted reasons.

Kigaku and his aide passed over the lumpy forestry, which expanded upwards into the mountains beneath them. Kyouko led the two: Kigaku, after many years, was regrettably ignorant of the lands before him, so he let the yamabiko take the front. She took him to a conspicuous span of cleared mountainside. Past the torii and the unevenly tiled stone pathway, a homely shrine sat on top of the false peak. They touched land just before the gate, and Kigaku presumed it was to take in the full sight of the shrine.

“Ametsuchi,” Kyouko finally said, calling him by his family name. “Still sounds kinda weird to say it, aha. It’s hard to get the ‘Sir’ out of my head because you’re like this bigshot that knows Lady Hijiri and Shou and can talk to them so easily and stuff.”

Please. Don’t think of me as anybody important. My time of relevance has long since passed. Just think of me as a wandering craftsman.

“Then what’s your craft?” she asked.

Kigaku was largely unprepared for her literal question. “I’m sorry, I am hard of hearing. Could you repeat that in sign language?

“I’m going to get mad, Ametsuchi,” Kyouko said, a stiff frown on her face. Though, she must have said it in jest as she’s desperately holding onto a mock-somber gaze. The girl held up her hands and crudely signed, “Then. What you?

The man stood there, stunned. He had expected her to either give up, ignore him, or do a mass-flailing of her arms. This had exceeded all of his expectations. The man reconsidered his thoughts of Kyouko as being the temple mascot.

Kyouko, noticing the man’s limp expression, beamed in response. She patted herself on the shoulder in great pride. “Heh-heh. Yeah, didn’t expect that, didja? Yes, this Kyouko studied last night! Diligently so! So you shall praise me!”

Kigaku thought of a way to do so.

[ ] For the second time that day, he patted her head.
[ ] He praised her verbally and kindly so.
[ ] He’d put in a good word for her to her master.
>>No. 42451
[X] He’d put in a good word for her to her master.

That's for whom she works hard for, right?
>>No. 42452
[X] For the second time that day, he patted her head

Pat head
>>No. 42453
[x] For the second time that day, he patted her head.
>>No. 42454
[x] For the second time that day, he patted her head.
>>No. 42455
[x] For the second time that day, he patted her head.
>>No. 42456
[x] For the second time that day, he patted her head.

Touch fluffy ear
>>No. 42457
[x] For the second time that day, he patted her head.

good doggo
>>No. 42458
[X] For the second time that day, he patted her head
>>No. 42459
[x] He praised her verbally and kindly so.
Kyouko is a good girl.
>>No. 42465
File 157413683129.jpg - (132.11KB, 850x601, __doremy_sweet_touhou_drawn_by_kaamin_mariarose753.jpg) [iqdb]
42465
There's no update for today. I counted, and I technically have twenty updates so far. That means I'm ahead of Nanowrimo schedule, so I'm going to skip today because I feel like shit, woohoo!

You'll see an update tomorrow unless I get hit by a meteor again. In the meantime, have some unrelated Doremy.
>>No. 42466
File 157414500039.jpg - (68.66KB, 581x900, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_kazawa_tonzura_d.jpg) [iqdb]
42466
For the second time that day, Kigaku patted her head. He put a measured hand through her hair and gave it a quick tousle. But as he retracted his hand, Kyouko looked to the man with expectant teal eyes.

“If you are inclined to do more of the same, maybe five to ten seconds more of it, then feel free. No, it’s okay! You don’t have to be shy. I don’t mind, really! So… here,” she insisted, inching forward with a satisfied smile. “You may pat away.”

Since Kyouko was adamant about it, Kigaku obliged. He took his hand and stroked the girl’s head, letting his fingers run through her fluffy hair again. He did so until the yamabiko looked pleased with his efforts.

Good work, Kyouko. I am impressed,” Kigaku said.

Kyouko puffed out her chest. “Who wouldn’t be?”

The moment was interrupted by intermittent footsteps. A woman, clad in bright vermilion, approached the two. It could have been no other than the Hakurei, holding the broom by the edge of its handle. She jabbed it at the two. “Who are you?”

“Hey, Reimu! Don’t you remember me? I’m Kasodani Kyou—”

“Not you, you living woodwind instrument!” the shrine maiden snapped. She points a finger to Kigaku. “You.”

I am Ametsuchi Kigaku, the once Prophet of Bishamonten. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Hakurei shrine maiden,” the man said, and the yamabiko echoed.

“Let him speak for himself, Kyouko.”

“Um.” The yamabiko threw an uncomfortable glance to Kigaku, who nodded goodnaturedly to the girl. “He can’t.”

“He… can’t?” The Hakurei said.

My voice is sealed,” Kigaku said, Kyouko voicing him. “So I am unable to speak. Kyouko will relay what I say instead.

“Oh.” The Hakurei blushed with shame. “Sorry, that was rude of me.”

It is quite alright.

She shook off her humiliation with a question. “So you said that you were the Prophet of Bishamonten. What did you come here for?”

“So you don’t beat him up,” Kyouko chimes in. The Hakurei casually bats the side of the yamabiko’s head. “Ow.”

I came to pay my respects to the Hakurei, but I suppose I just wished to visit the shrine.

“And, just to be clear, you’re not going to try and fight me, right?”

Kigaku stared at the shrine maiden blankly. “I would never. I follow the path of nonviolence. But even if I did not, it sounds insensible to fight someone I had just met.

After Kyouko recited his words to her, the Hakurei breathed a sigh of relief. The anguish that furrowed her brows laxed. “Finally. Somebody reasonable.” Approaching Kigaku, she placed a hand on the man’s shoulder. “I like you already. Just don’t go causing any trouble with your Buddhist friends, and we’re good.”

The man nodded. He has yet to tell his powers to the Hakurei, but she did not ask. He was unsure—on one hand, she might appreciate his forthrightness, but on the other hand, she might see him as a threat, as did his once followers.

[ ] Kigaku told her.
[ ] Kigaku would tell her if asked.
>>No. 42467
>>42465
...Okay, so I lied. Well, whatever, updates for all.
>>No. 42468
[X] Kigaku would tell her if asked.

Or, uh, ask if she wants to know?
>>No. 42469
[x] Kigaku would tell her if asked.
>>No. 42470
[x] Kigaku would tell her if asked.
>>No. 42471
[X] Kigaku would tell her if asked.
>>No. 42472
[x] Kigaku would tell her if asked.

I don't think in the games they ever state what each 2hu's power is unless it's relevant to the plot or the fight ahead. That info is usually gleamed from the omakes and such.
>>No. 42473
[x] Kigaku told her.
But don't let Kyouko translate.
>>No. 42474
[x] Kigaku told her.

Being straight forward should appeal to her. Besides, if she ever gets a related incident, we will be informed and be able to help (because she will suspect him first and beat him up, but whatever it just works)
>>No. 42475
[x] Kigaku told her.

It's the sensible thing
>>No. 42478
File 157431720310.jpg - (68.36KB, 850x802, __hakurei_reimu_touhou_drawn_by_leon_mikiri_hassha.jpg) [iqdb]
42478
Kigaku would tell her if asked. He still had reservations speaking to others about his abilities—he’d prefer not to get sealed again if he could help it. Regardless, so long as he could not speak, his true powers would not reveal themselves. That, perhaps, was for the best. The man would never use his powers to harm another, so what the Hakurei did not know shall not hurt her.

Kyouko gave the shrine maiden a wink. “Don’t worry, Reimu. When was the last time we’ve caused trouble for you?”

“Every time any of you Buddhists show up, actually,” the Hakurei said, glaring at the yamabiko. “Let’s hope that Kigaku isn’t like the rest of you trigger-happy monks.”

Kyouko opened her mouth to say complain, but the Hakurei cut her off.

“If you’re about to say something really stupid, don’t say it,” she said.

Kyouko then closed her mouth, silently looking over to Kigaku in distress.

Actually,” Kigaku said, saving Kyouko from silence, “She was about to ask something for me. I’m painfully ignorant of Gensokyo and its lands—admittedly, it has been a while. Has anything happened since I’ve been away?

The Hakurei hitched an eyebrow. “How long have you been gone?”

Perhaps a thousand years or more. I am unsure. I did not have the luxury to check. I was sealed away by what you call the—

“—Yatato Kayami,” Kyouko said but not necessarily repeated.

“The Yatato what-now?” the Hakurei questioned.

Kyouko, sensing something was amiss, turned to the prophet, who could only muster a blank look. “...Did I mess up?” she asked, to which the man nodded. “Oh! Sorry, sorry!”

The Yata no Kagami,” Kyouko reiterated, correctly that time. Then, processing the words she echoed out, she whipped her head back to face Kigaku. “The Yata no Kagami? That’s what Lady Hijiri was—!”

“I think the Taoist bunch had that mirror last.” The shrine maiden put a hand to her chin. “But I might be wrong. It was only mentioned in passing.” After much roundabout, she finally wound back to the question at hand. “Anyway. I don’t really know what you’ve missed other than literally everything. I could tell you about the last few years or so, but I don’t think you have that kind of scope in mind. So maybe go talk to Hieda no Akyuu. She’s the Chronicler, meaning she has the last thousand or so years on record.”

Hieda?” Kigaku said, smiling. “I am glad to know that she is still around.

“Of course you know her.” The Hakurei rolled her eyes. “Seems like everybody does at your age.”

With the visit drawing to a close, Kigaku thought to go elsewhere.

[ ] He thought to visit the Taoist practitioners. The mention of the Yata no Kagami got him curious.
[ ] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
>>No. 42479
[x] He thought to visit the Taoist practitioners. The mention of the Yata no Kagami got him curious.
>>No. 42480
[x] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
>>No. 42481
[x] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
>>No. 42482
[X] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler

Probably not a good idea to immediately head towards what might be the thing that sealed us.
>>No. 42483
[x] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
>>No. 42484
[x] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
>>No. 42485
[X] He thought to visit the Taoist practitioners. The mention of the Yata no Kagami got him curious.
>>No. 42486
[x] He thought to visit Hieda and glean history from the Chronicler.
I like neither option but gotta vote fast
>>No. 42490
File 15744073597.jpg - (136.73KB, 600x1268, __kasodani_kyouko_touhou_drawn_by_kazawa_tonzura_d.jpg) [iqdb]
42490
Hieda is a person of much history—in many senses of the word,” Kigaku said, smiling.

“Sure. I guess she is,” the Hakurei sighed. “However, Akyuu can be a bit… overbearing at times. Though I’m sure you can handle her way better than I can.”

“But Reimu, don’t you find everyone overbearing?” And where Kyouko should have stayed silent, she continued instead. “That’s why you go around, beating everyone up for no reason.”

That was the last straw. The miko’s eyebrows formed a sharp cross—and cross she was—as her voice dropped several tones. “You. Kigaku, forgive me, but I’m about to make a mute out of Kyouko real soon. For once in your life, you sorry excuse for an echodog, could you just shut up?”

Kigaku looked over in silent horror.

Kyouko smiled nervously. “Um, I’m a yamabiko, so it’s not exactly easy to—”

“Not!” the Hakurei barks. “The echoing! I could not care any less when you’re retelling Kigaku’s words. That’s what you’re supposed to be doing! I’m talking about what words come out of your dumb mouth when it’s you talking! Do your job by echoing what he’s saying and say nothing else. Nothing! Else! Lest you say something incredibly stupid again! Okay?”

Kyouko was quiet. Her gaze wandered downwards. The yamabiko’s lips quivered as they moved to a full pout, and her ears, which always had a slight lift to them, drooped straight down to her bangs. She remained that way for a moment as she gripped the hems of her pink, flowery dress as if she were hanging onto her life.

The Hakurei’s previously fiery irritation sputtered out into smolders. She coughed the smoke of her anger away, and with an ashy voice, she stammered out noises that vaguely resembled words. The Hakurei looked to Kigaku for help, but he slowly shook his head.

“I know I say some stupid stuff.” Kyouko said, fighting back tears. “But I’m not just a tool to be used, you know.”

“Yes! I-I know that. And, err, I’m sorry, I said too much, I went over the line, and—”

“I’m sorry. I… just—” Kyouko did not bother listening. Instead, she dashed to the stairs and disappeared downward.

Kigaku gave the shrine maiden a look of one-part sympathy and nine-parts disappointment. “We shall take our leave. Thank you for your time and good bye, Hakurei.”

Without Kyouko, however, his silent voice did not fall on able ears, so the Hakurei looked on in guilt as the man followed his assistant down the steps.
>>No. 42493
wow fuckin dick move there Raymoo gg
>>No. 42495
>>42493
I mean, Kyoko also commited a faux pas with the whole "you just beat people up for no reason", but I won't deny that Reimu made a bigger one, especially since she even started off the conversation with that attitude.
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