Tony_wulf 2012/11/13 (Tue) 21:46 No. 162767 ▼
File 135284316231.jpg - (188.81KB, 700x985 , nitori.jpg)
Well, this was more fun to write than it should have been.
“So, uh... What’s a Kappa?” I ask, seeing as I have no clue what the hell one of those things are. Some weird creature, no doubt, but that means little to me. Regardless, this is a chance for me to meet some more of the denizens of Gensokyo who aren’t boring old humans. Sure, we can learn magic and all sorts of other things but being the ‘master of none’ doesn’t suit me very well, thank you very much.
“You’ll find out soon enough. We’ll head there first.” Reimu says, turning in a seemingly random direction as she does so. Well, no point in arguing, so I urged Rose ahead of me and followed the shrine maiden towards wherever the hell it is she was going. I can’t help but notice the way that the crowd gives us a wide berth as we move through, but whether this is due out of respect for Reimu or just fear of me and Rose, I can’t be sure. Probably both come to think of it. I blame my hood.
It doesn’t take long until we reach a large, open area, relatively undisturbed despite the general hubbub going on not 2 metres behind me. At the centre of this space stands a nondescript market stall, with a box and pouch lay on it. What makes this stall so different from the others I just blatantly ignored was the hulking metal... thing behind it. It’s a rather long cylinder really, with a protrusion on the top of it. Mounted on it is a smaller, tube like contraption for which I can see no purpose other than decoration. The stall itself is unmanned, but someone was obviously here a moment or two ago judging from the way I can smell traces of food as we move closer towards it.
“Nitori? Are you in there” Reimu asks, banging on the metal construct. I back away from it reflexively as a metal hatch slams open on the top part of it, followed by a lot of clanging not to dissimilar from tumbling plate mail. Unlike that though, I can hear a barely muffled and very descriptive string of curses no doubt aimed at intimidating whatever it is that fell. I very nearly start climbing the thing when a head pops out of the hatch, followed by the rest of a body. Reimu looks as bored as ever as the small person clambers down to ground level. Only once they turn around do I see that the person in front of me, covered in black stains, is a female. A very blue one, at that. Blue dress, blue boots, even blue hair and eyes. The only differences I can see from this pattern are the green cap and bag, but even then it’s not much of a difference.
“Oh, Reimu, it’s you. Not every day you pop down here for a visit. Something broke at the shrine?” The girl I could only assume to be Nitori asked, blanking both Rose and I out completely. I can’t blame her for that though as most of our attention was on the contraption behind her. From what I can see, Reimu just shakes her head and points at me.
“Those two are outsiders, but not like the rest. No knowledge of anything that could live here at all. Don’t even know the term youkai. I’m just out shopping with them to give them a good grip on the town, but he asked what a Kappa was, so I brought them here.” Well, that sums it up nicely. The shrine maiden takes a look around following that brief summary, and her brow obviously furrows. Only upon looking around myself do I notice that a small group – five or so - of poorly armed militia are approaching the four of us, and it is drawing lots of attention. “What now?” Is all I manage to hear from her before she is drowned out by shouts from the mob.
“Hey, outsiders. You’re not wanted in this village. I suggest you leave right now.” Evidently, news of our arrival had spread fast, which generally means that idiots like these ones form an opinion on us straight away. The one who spoke was a large man, looking like he composed of nothing but muscle from what I could see, meaning he was probably a miner of lumberjack of some kind. The same could be said about the others with him, but none matched up to his stature. If I lived like a normal person it would have been quite intimidating having all these men stood here, but if I led a normal life I wouldn’t have faced down abominations straight from hell whose only purpose was to make people flee in terror. The leader let a large grin form on his face before continuing speaking. “You might be with the miko but that doesn’t mean we have to just let trash like you just wander in,” Okay, he’s getting on my nerves now. Silently, I draw my dagger, keeping it hidden beneath the folds of my cloak. “You’ll do well to keep yourselves busy being youkai chow.”
“I have no intention to end up as food, thank you. Now, if you would kindly run along we were helping Reimu with her shopping,” I reply, pausing for dramatic effect before carrying on “Do you really think I’d be scared out by a bunch of over-zealous fools like yourselves?” If he wasn’t annoyed now then he must have some serious self control. Judging from the way his face is flushing a deep red, I think it’s safe to say he doesn’t.
“Why you... Get them!” Seems like I read him perfectly. His shout draws most of the shopping crowd’s (who aren’t already engrossed) attention to us, and try to make it look as if they aren’t interested. The ad-hoc militia surges forwards with the single minded determination to get close, reminding me of Orcs slightly. Still, they close the distance between us pretty fast, one of them swinging a pickaxe at me. Jumping out of the way, I chant the spell for invisibility as quick as I can and charge at the leader of them. Confusion fills his face, as well as the faces of his subordinates, before I bring the flat of my blade down on his temple, hard and fast. It’s a neat little trick I picked up when I was young that stuck with me ever since. Normally I would have just slit his throat but that isn’t the best image to send to people right now.
The rest of his entourage just stare blankly as the collapsed body crumpling before me as I begin to become visible again. Letting him drop, I turn around and slowly walk towards Nitori’s stall whilst ignoring the looks I get from Reimu. Clearly she disagrees with my method but she can suck it up, because the rest of the miners are fleeing now. Good for them really, as I don’t really feel like holding back if they would be stupid enough to continue. If anything, I’d be doing the gene pool a favour by killing them off.
“Was that really necessary?” The shrine maiden asks me, though I hardly expect her to do anything about it. I just nod my head at her, which results in yet another scowl. She’s good at that.
“Serves him right for getting into a fight he couldn’t handle” I reply, barely masking my desire to go back and finish him off. Rose must be putting two and two together in her head, as she starts to walk over to the unconscious man and performs a basic healing spell on him. Leaping up, he stares at Rose blankly before his legs decide that he’d be better off somewhere else. Preferably, he should go as far away from me as humanly possible. Less things I have to deal with the better.
“Well, that’s sorted that out then.” Rose says, clapping her hands together to try and change the subject like she normally does “Where are we off to next?” It’s a good question, and I turn to Reimu, hoping for her input.
“Well, you two do stick out quite a bit. You should head to the tailors” To my surprise it was Nitori who answered her. I can feel her staring quite intently at me though, for some strange reason. “I’d like to borrow you first though. I want to study that invisibility of yours a bit. I have a device that can do that but nowhere near like what you did” Ah. So that’s what it is. I should probably just wander off now...
“You can keep him for a while” Rose chips in, rather unhelpfully. “I know his cloth sizes well enough to get him something decent. I’m sure he won’t mind~” Damn this woman to all 9 hells. With her like that there’s no way I can back out of being a test subject without losing face. It is with a solemn mood that I accept her invitation, if you could call it that. As Rose and Reimu walk away, I can’t help but glare at the pair of them as I can make out faint laughter between them.
The base of Youkai Mountain. Roughly the same time
Two men walked along the worn path, treading carefully in this foreign land. The leader was calm, carefully stepping forward as he forged a path towards their unknown destination. The man behind only came up to his shoulder, and stared at their surroundings with fear in his eyes.
“Damnit Zayon, this is getting us nowhere!” The shorter man called out. The man called Zayon stopped briefly, contemplating on his companion’s words before starting his walk again.
“If you have any better ideas Cainan, I’m more than happy to listen.” His response was delivered with an air of casualness surrounding it. Cainan hated this attitude of this, he had done since they had met, but he had built up a grudging respect for the battle mage during their time together. Zayon had made it clear to every group he worked with that he would make sure that everyone serving with them was never left behind, regardless if they were alive or not.
“I said before we got here that we should head downhill. No one in their right mind builds a town up a mountain as big as this, not unless their as stubborn as the Dwarves.” Cainan pointed out, quite rightly in his mind. During his current life and previous incarnations he had never seen a civilisation other than the Dwarves who could make a living at the top of these barren mountains, most being forced to leave due to the harsh climate, or other extraneous factors.
Zayon just shrugged at his partner’s response. He had decided to come this way on a whim, ignoring the complaining angel, but couldn’t shake the feeling that they were being watched by something in the distance. Whatever it is will find a nasty surprise, he thought, readying a spell to engage the phantom enemy with. He had felt its presence since they began their trek, but just disregarded it as a threat for the most part. It was only as they got closer the path leading up to the mountain did he feel it moving in on them, and had prepared for the worst.
“Ah, whatever. We’d only get lost on that path too. Where’s that damn assassin when you need him?” Cainan’s complaint brought back uncomfortable memories of their last interaction with the assassin in question. A fight had broken out between the two of them, only ending with the intervention of the werewolf assigned to keep an eye on Lupe.
“Lupe is a good man, Cainan. You shouldn’t let your religious views cloud your judgement of how you see him as a person.” Zayon had no faults with the assassin himself, but found his methods questionable to say the least. Lupe had once cut the muscles out of the arms and legs of one of the lower ranking troopers who he claimed tried to kill him, then left him stranded in the desert for several days before they found the body in time to revive him. Nevertheless, Cainan was right about Lupe’s tracking ability. It proved an invaluable asset on many occasions before and would most likely be just as useful for them now.
It was during this lapse of concentration the pair of them found that they were under attack. From what, they couldn’t be sure on, but the magic it was using was giving away its position. Unfortunately for them though, there was no opening for them to attack back through. Instead, Zayon was forced to resort to his only defensive spell in his arsenal. Chanting the required words whilst doing his best to dodge the incoming attacks, he fails to notice Cainan taking a large blue projectile to the chest, knocking the celestial of his feet. Finally finishing the chant, he causes a massive burst of energy and smoke to appear out of the ground. Barely keeping himself up, he starts running back the way they came, followed shortly by a now standing Cainan.
“Well, that was easier than I thought” The wolf tengu mumbled to herself before returning to her post. Momiji retreated from the scene quickly, figuring that it was best if she left before they discovered that it was just her defending this lonely path and came back for another go.
Nitori’s stall, market place of the Human Village.
“Oh great. More trouble.” I just finished the test Nitori had asked me to carry out, mainly consisting of casting invisibility whilst she took readings on yet another strange device of hers. The nearby explosion at the base of the mountain was a good reason for her to stop though. I can see a lot of smoke around there, but not the telltale orange glow of fire, so that is one plus. Forest fires are never fun, even when you cause them.
“That doesn’t look good” Nitori says, stating the obvious here. Pulling out what looks like two conjoined telescopes, she starts scanning the area where the blast came from. Without warning, she grabs my hand and leads me towards the village exit. Before I even form words she’s explaining what the hell she’s doing. “My home is just near there, as well as most of my friends. We have to hurry and see what this is about.” Well, it could be worse. I could always run into that bloody annoying angel again.
 Head straight there. The others can catch up with us.
 Find the others first. The more support we have the better.