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197889 No. 197889
Front Matter/Disclaimer
TL;DR: This is an unplanned CYOA. The first update is all about showing what “Tools” the MC has. You do not need to explicitly understand the mechanics of them. Your chosen actions will determine the history of MC. Expect verbose walls of doom.

I am not completely familiar with the Touhou Project, and most of my interpretation comes from fan works. I am catching up with official games as fast as I can, but I hope the character interpretations will not be too off. This CYOA is intended for a practice (both for my writing and for KP-ing), so no plan, no outline, no arcs. Expect things to go wild. And I have no images.

Also, first time post. Hopefully formatting doesn’t screw up.

The character background is set to justify “upgrades” which can be chosen during the days. If things get too complicated, however, I will just choose some appropriate ones for the MC. And you will see, the MC uses magic in ways which certain modern professionals are likely to appreciate. Hopefully I don’t make him too strong or too weak. Or too complicated. To make things easier to learn, I will put inventory and spells available before relevant choices. Alternatively, you can set up a goal (e.g. blow up the door) and I will select the best tools and action available for MC, which can also set up some examples for creative use of spells (e.g. cast Thrust on door, charge up Storage with insane amount of MP collected by Amplification, cast Conduction to connect the two, BOOM).

And, you are very unlikely to acquire any new spells. So, take good use of existing ones.

Of course, expect reference to Call of Cthulhu(the game), Dwarf Fortress, etc. Sorry, I don’t play D&D.

Schedule: I will try to update every night PST, or when there are enough to continue writing. No guarantees, since I am lazy. And unplanned. Don’t expect later updates to be as long as the first one, though.

And I am no astronomer, so if I get the stars wrong, that is my fault. If I get geology wrong, my fault. If I get physics wrong, however, then you are reading illusion and you need to perform a Reality check, lest you drown in eternal madness!

No. 197890
OK, didn't expect "minimum posting delay".
----
You woke up in an unfamiliar forest, staring into the deep, dark, sky, the Milky Way shining in the moonless night.

You stare at the stars carefully for a while. They look alien, yet familiar. They are different from what you have seen for the previous half century, but your distant memory tells you that, you are gazing into the sky of Earth.

Long time ago, you were one humble computer engineer on Earth, but by some contrived arcane magic you encountered accidentally, you were thrown into a foreign, magical world, where you touched the concept of flight for the first time. Almost immediately, you were fascinated by the concept of being airborne without sitting in an airplane, and soaked your next fifty years with blazing air and fluffy clouds.

And now, you are back to Earth, missing twenty days of memory and left in a confused state. You pushed yourself up, and stumbled on your feet for a few times. For one, you have not touched down on land for the previous fifteen years, and for two, you found yourself stuck in a young body. Your young body.

You desperately want to check out what you look like right now, and touched something hard on your waist.

Your sword. Or more accurately, something that looks like a machete with cross guard, built and enchanted specifically to allow harsh abuse. You pulled it out, and tried to see your face on the polished surface.

You cannot see anything, unfortunately, because it is truly pitch black here. Given that you almost forgot how to walk, you decide to test whether you flavor of flight will work on Earth. Surprisingly, this place is filled with magic --- and is even denser than in the magic world you wandered for fifty years. This is a blessing and a curse: you can still fly as effortlessly as you could, but every single “automaton” spells you accumulated in the decades needs to be recalibrated.

And there are thousands of them.

And you can only fly slowly because you lost all those automatons.

You floated upwards above the tree line from the clearing, and see a lake not far away, glimmering in starlight. Naturally, you make the most logical decision for a human being: you are going to sleep above that lake, tonight!

No, seriously. Flight has been engraved into your soul so hard that you don’t even need to think about it. Sleeping in the air? That is no problem. After all, the sky is your home, isn’t it? Plus, anything that tries to approach you above a lake is guaranteed to pass through a huge open space, and thus is forced to enter your detection zone. What could possibly go wrong?

During the short flight, you carefully monitor any disturbance of surrounding magic flow. Yes, this is Earth and it is not supposed to have a magic grid, but there it exists, and you have no idea what abominations might lurk in the dark. You don’t want to alert them with careless pulses of scanning beam. Not when you lost 99% of the maneuverability you possessed just twenty days ago.

Counting on your available spells, you start checking whether they still work. Thrust, Storage, Amplification, Conduction, and Body Reinforcement obviously work – you are using them to fly, right now. Basic elemental manipulation for Fire, Water, Air, and Earth kind of works, but not quite powerful enough to power up your spells. Not that you know many of them, though. With all the spells checked, you are confident that you can recover all your flight capability, given enough time. Offensive powers, however, are limited to the good old kinetic impactors, as you cannot even cast a fireball right now.

Then an idea struck you. Does your Familiars work? They are simple magic constructs which obeys your command, and you could spam thousands of them at whatever danger that came in your way. Can you still do that?

The answer is yes, to a degree. You can power a whooping four of them, and nothing more.

Pathetic. You think. But then, they are ideal little scouts that can extend your senses (of magic) for some hefty distance.

Above the lake, you spawned a total of three Scouts and one Interceptor, all glowing in a dim blue light. You pull in a Scout and let it shine a yellow beam of spotlight at your face, and look at the surface of water.

Wow, I am back to my 15-year-old body! You looked at the reflection of the young boy in awe, obviously succeeding that 0/1D6 Sanity check. And no wonder I feel so much stress(physical). Yes, at age 15 (which should be about… 65 years back?) you were an immature, weak, thin teenager who never ever exercises. Not that you grew any stronger later, but at least you got more resistant to acceleration later in your life. You suspect that 2-gee acceleration is all it needs to make you collapse.

As an Ordinary Human Being, you replenished some water for yourself and your water bottle, and hover ten meters above the center of this large, clear, fresh water lake. Your manipulation of Air is still a bit out of sync, but you managed to create a puffy “airbed” which provides somewhat soft, comfortable support and insulation against the cool summer night. Stationing three Scouts on circular orbit around you (a few hundred meters apart) and Interceptor right underneath yourself, you “lie down” and start to peacefully think about the situation, letting out a long, relieving sigh.

You close your eyes, listen to the chirping birds and grasshoppers and the occasional splash of water.

I have long forgotten what Earth biosphere is like now. You sigh in a small nostalgic mood, and decide that it is time for a quick sleep.

It’s not like anything can attack a person hovering ten meters above a vast lake, right?

Hours into your sleep, something tickles the detection zone of one of your Scouts and woke you up. You immediately noticed something strange and novel: you are accustomed to detecting many types of magical disturbance and abnormal peaks, whose strength generally is proportional to the amount of danger they pack. However, this one is peculiar. You sense an absence of magic, and you have no idea what it is (despite your decades of adventure and explore). Squeezing your eyes, all you see is the silhouette of the tree line, barely visible in front of the cosmic backdrop.

You immediately start to look at your options. You can shine a spotlight at its position, but since it is a few hundred meters away, a beam of magic might work better. Alternatively, you can try to get closer for a look with your own magic senses (or eyes). Or you can go for the Leeroy Jenkins option, like charging with your sword (with your currently weak strength) or commanding the Interceptor to fire a pattern of concussion shots in attempt to knock it out of the air. Unfortunately, your Element controls are not tuned and precise enough to create lethal ammunition such as solid slugs or fireballs.

Your Status

-Pristine and clean
-Magic is marginally functional
-A bit tired and sleepy

Your Inventory:

-1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
-1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
You cannot fight with it effectively right now
-1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
-1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
-Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. Nothing fancy, but you don’t have shoes

Your Spells
-Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
-Storage. Stores magic energy. Required for everything you do
-Amplification. Controls lots of magic with a little. Required for everything you do
-Conduction. Conducts and focuses magic through a line. Required for everything you do
-Body Reinforcement. Reinforces your body against impact and acceleration. You use it to protect your fragile body
-Command Familiar. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the familiar and respawn
Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
-Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Familiars
-3 x Scout
-1 x Interceptor

Your choice:

[ ] Do nothing, observe
[ ] Use your Scouts
[ ] Get closer
[ ] ATTACK!!
[ ] PANIC!!
No. 197892
Sorry, format didn't copy through. I will write in plain text next time.
No. 197894
Oh, and BTW. If no one replies for too long (a few hours maybe), then I will just choose one myself.
No. 197895
>>197894

Remove colons on the following for use:

[i:][/i] Italics
[b:][/b] Bold
[u:][/u] Underline
[s:][/s] Strike through
[spoiler:][/spoiler] Spoiler text

Welcome to the site! I highly suggest you not use an email, however. That field is used for either secret messages or for entering "sage" without any quotes to prevent a thread bump. We can see the email.
No. 197896
Also, the post delay happens on starting a new thread.
No. 197897
Alright, while I don't mean to be rude, let me count the issues here:

#1. By your own admission, your familiarity with Touhou could use some work, which usually comes before you start writing derivative works, not after. It's by no means an uncommon problem, but it's worth noting, I think. Also, no plan, no outline? Bad idea. While you obviously don't want to write the entire CYOA out in advance, having some idea of where you might be headed is essential if you want to tell a coherent and consistent story.

#2. Not only are there are no Touhous here, there are no other characters aside from our protagonist, who comes across as a dime-a-dozen OC and doesn't make a notable first impression. For a first effort it's understandable, but that makes it more difficult to get invested in him.

#3. The technical writing/grammar. Your English could really use some work, there are a lot of misspellings, tense changes, and awkward phrasings that disrupt the flow of the story and, once again, make it difficult to get invested.

#4. This can be a pretty slow board, so not getting any answers for several hours is not automatically a bad thing and is certainly no reason to start selecting options yourself. At that point, you're not even running a CYOA anymore, you're just writing fanfiction.

#5. This one is relatively minor compared to everything else, but having no images really doesn't inspire confidence or interest as a reader. The image that accompanies the first post will always be the first thing that anyone who looks at your thread will see, so you want something that draws people's attention, not a boring placeholder.

All that being said, everyone needs to practice before they can claim to be "good," so it's completely understandable that your first effort might not be the best. My advice, as cliche as it sounds, would be to lurk more and brush up on both your technical writing and your knowledge of the characters before jumping in headfirst, but ultimately it's up to you. Maybe get a beta reader or some assistance along those lines? I apologize if I'm coming across as kind of harsh, but I can't really see this working out particularly well and I don't want to just ignore the time you put into this without explanation. Best of luck in whatever you decide to do!
No. 197898
[X] Use the scouts to scope out whatever you detected.

>>197897

I agree with the notion of needing practice. OP, I highly suggest that you at least find a beta reader, as you tripped up quite a few times in that first update alone.
No. 197899
>>197897
Thanks for your advice. I will definitely proof read a few more times (and make a plan) from now on. I haven't done creative writing a lot, so yeah, I need to practice pacing a bit more. As of the familiarity, I am trying to catch up. I am fairly confident that they should be enough for the first few updates.

>>197898
By beta reader, do you mean I find someone IRL or is there some mechanism on this board?
No. 197900
>>197899

Ask around on THP's IRC. I suggest Eientei, though. THP's more general IRC channel is a bit less writery.

https://kiwiirc.com/client/irc.rizon.net:9999/?nick=#eientei
No. 197901
[X] Do whatever would be normal or logical in this situation.

MC knows how his powers work.
No. 197902
You know, since I wanna get some quick practice writing,I will start working on the "send scout" option for now.

I will proof-read.
No. 197904
OOC: To make things simpler, I removed spells Storage, Amplification, and Conduction. Let's just say that they are required anyways, so there is no need to mention them at all. Also, it seems that my understanding of Familiar is completely wrong (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Familiar_spirit), so let me rename it Drone instead.

Also, I need to get my brain bleached after reading some other CYOA here...

---

[ ] Use your Scouts

You start to evaluate the situation. Things that can make magic "disappear" cannot be good for your health. You'd better investigate what it is.

You relax yourself in an upright position, facing at the direction of that... thing, and shine a beam of magic energy with your closest Scout. Quietly suspending above the calm lake, you focus yourself intensely, searching for a response caused by your active scanning.

You unconsciously hold your breath, and pray for a response. In such nights, your safety depends solely on your sense of magic, and the last thing you want is to encounter an existence which evades your scanning.

Ah hah! There is the reflection! As you confirmed that this thing does not absorb your magic, you let out a light sigh. After all, you really don't want to fight a magical black hole. In dark.

Then, you (or your Scout) sense a sudden shudder from the "black hole". You are surprised at the motion: it almost feels organic.

Great. Even better! A living black hole. You think sarcastically. And I probably just woke it up. Better play it safe.

And by "play it safe", you mean "shine a beam of light to reveal its true form". For some reason, your mind gets so anxious about your reduced magic control that you just did not register the rudeness of pointing a spotlight at something woken up by yourself. Perhaps you are away from civilization for too long.

You squeeze your eyes again, and briefly see the "black hole" disappearing, and the magical reflection reveals some sort of humanoid. Of course, you can only see a tiny figure.

It takes you full five seconds to remember that people generally don't like to have a searchlight pointed at their eyes. You immediately dim it, and start to consider the option of "get closer and apologize". Heck, you might even get directions towards a civilization! However, you are much more cautious than that. After all, she (is it a female figure?) just emerged from a blob of void, so she is probably not human. Years of adventure have taught you at least one thing: any magical creature that obtains a humanoid form is exceedingly dangerous to deal with. In addition, the more appealing its form is, the more you should consider running away.

Of course, when you are already noticed, you probably shouldn’t make sudden movements. Therefore, you firmly hold your ground (air?), slowly pull back your Scout, and carefully look at the figure. She is lazily drifts in your direction.

The wind is silent and chilling, you can almost feel the surrounding darkness compress towards you, threatening to swallow you alive. You shake your head, survey the environment, but your human eyes see nothing but distant shadows, and you clearly know that you are not in your best condition to fight. Flight, however, is an option.

Under the pale-yellow halo emitted by your Scout, you finally see a glint of reflection from her blood red pupils. At that moment, you feel a chill piercing right through your body, causing you to tremor involuntarily.

What? You scream in your mind with great confusion. There is no way I would be terrified by THAT! No, it must be some psychological attack.

Taking deep breaths, you forcefully calm down your trembling body. You mutter to yourself while searching through possible spells that may cause this effect, with no results. Just as you try to scratch your head, a moment of enlightenment struck you as you see your slender hands:

You are in your 15-year-old body. When you were 15, you had not even seen a chicken slaughtered, let alone encountering unknown magic creature on the edge of a dark forest, above a lake. It is not accustomed to holding back fear!

And if she can terrify your body just by staring, she must be dangerous. You’d better trust your instincts.

You warm up your spells, and slowly start to drift back, with Interceptor between you and the creature. With your eyes and four beams of magic pointed from multiple directions, you make sure this figure cannot possibly make unexpected movements. Your make the gesture of STOP, clearly threatening “come closer and I will blast you in your face with this mysterious glowy floaty thingy”. After all, you know how an Interceptor can drain all your energy in an instant (with an impressive wall of bullets), but she doesn’t.

She didn’t stop, and you took your time to improvise a plan to escape, which involves flying like a ballistic missile, if she closes into fifty meters.

“Hello, Mister~”

That Voice! That child-like, cheerful voice emerges right behind your ears. The sudden, unexpected intimacy makes your blood rush but you cannot detect anything! You shout out loud and follow your reflexes to dive, sweep the surface of the lake, turn back, and –

Indeed, your magic senses are always right. Nothing is there.

You immediately understand that you fell in a trap of illusion, so you bolt back to pull apart the distance, and turn to face the creature. Illuminated by your drones, you see a small girl with short blond hair, wearing pitch black vest and skirt. A small ribbon is tied on her hair, and you can just make out her delicate fingers extending from the white blouse covering her arm.

She is right in front of you, at arm’s length. Eerie red eyes fixed with yours, and a wide grin on her face.

She “steps” forward in the air, and you cautiously back off, line your Interceptor on your side, and point its nose at her. Every nerve in your body is screaming DANGER to you, and you need a plan, now.

The girl puts her index finger at her lips, which hooks upward cheerfully. Her red eyes scan your Interceptor for a moment, then return to you, smiling.

“Are you a human, Mister?”

How delightful her voice is! She must have the smile of an angel… if you ignore her hungry gaze, that is.

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- Pristine and clean
- Magic is marginally functional
- Adrenaline is blowing up your heart, and making your limbs numb
- You just failed a Sanity check, if you noticed at all

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. Nothing fancy, but you don’t have shoes

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Body Reinforcement. Reinforces your body against impact and acceleration. You use it to protect your fragile body
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
- 3 x Scout. Closest one is 50 meters from you
- 1 x Interceptor. Right by your head, pointing at the dangerous innocent looking girl

Your Response

[ ] “Yes. What about you?”
[ ] “No. Why would you think I am a human?”
[ ] Go ballistic, literally. Humanoid magic creatures are usually quite territorial, so she must be the only one in this region. Right?
[ ] Point blank barrage! It’s not like you can miss at this range, right?
[ ] Other plans?
No. 197905
Oh carp, missed a grammar mistake in editing.

She is lazily drifts in your direction -> She lazily drifts in your direction
No. 197912
[X]"No I am A bird that got turned human"
No. 197918
[X] Define "Human".

Are any of us really Human? Who's to say where one link on the evolutionary chain ends and another begins? Maybe this nice young woman might indulge us in some philosophical debate.
No. 197920
All right, call vote so I am not wasting my writing juice

[X]"No I am A bird that got turned human"
[X] Define "Human".
No. 197922
Messed up format, reposting...
No. 197924
OOC: Just noticed that I forgot to remove Body Reinforcement, as I notice that MC has it set to “always on” and thus is not worth mentioning. Thrust has other uses so it is still available.
[X] Define "Human".
[X]"No I am A bird that got turned human"
---

Are you a human?

This question almost sends you into a ballistic trajectory immediately, but you think twice. You have next to no intel about this world, and you are far from your peak performance. It would be a really bad idea if you lose control mid-air and crash into some sort of barrier, or worse, agitate another hostile humanoid. You might as well try to talk your way out.

However, when you think about the question carefully, you start to realize that what you have done in previous decades were as far from “human” as you can think of. Technically, per physiology, you are a human. But then… You command magic in a way like spirits. You have attached magical co-processors as if you are an AI of some sort. You have never landed once in the past fifteen years. Heck, you sleep in the freaking sky!

Add in the fact that you look 15 while exceeds age eighty, and there you go! You just found the perfect material to bluff your way out, even with your meager social skill. A confident smile creeps on your face, your body stops trembling, and you respond.

“Yes, and no.”

Satisfied by the young girl’s expression of confusion, you continue, while silently charging a stack of Storage spells.

“As far as my memory goes, I was undoubtfully a human. Later in my life, however, I might be possessed and transformed by the spirit of a setophaga striata.”

“A what?”

The girl blinks her red eyes at the obscure word, while you elaborate the subject in a slow, deliberate tone to give you more time to conjure lies.

“A tiny, tiny bird which crosses the Atlantic Ocean every year, flying non-stop for thousands of kilometers for days. A spectacle of life, I would say.”

Your brain overclocks, assembling the best words to avoid suspicion.

“As for me, my feet have not touched the ground for fifteen years until… a few hours ago.”

Her eyes widen, or is that your illusion? You cannot see very well anyways. You pray that she has picked up your 15-year-old appearance. You then proceed to slowly and verbosely draw an inconclusive conclusion, in order to waste some more time.

“So! I am what I am. I can pro-bably be a human, given my look, but I can also be a spirit of a bird who happen to possess the body of a human!”

And by the way, you just finished charging up your stack of Storage to allow a swift air combat, so you are slightly less nervous, even though your heart is still pounding hard. Her eyes glint in a flash of red.

“Is that so~”

The little girl murmurs to herself, shifts here and there, circles around you, and looks at you up and down with skeptical eyes.

Long, uncomfortable silence. Her gaze stings your body, and you have to pay uttermost full attention to prevent a confidence break down. You force your heart to keep beating when her face closes into a few inches, and her red eyes stare directly into yours. You barricade your boiling fear, and stand absolutely still, and return a gaze of steel and indifference.

You have a very bad feeling that your Body Reinforcement might not prevent her from tearing you apart like wet tissue paper.

After the longest ten seconds of your life, she sighs, and speaks in disappointment.

“So… you are a new Yokai, then? But you smell so much like a human…but…”

“…Yokai?”

You silently relief your body and mind. You think you have heard about these existences long, long ago. You did not believe that they existed, but you are undoubtfully sure that this memory belongs to Earth, not some other random magical world which you were thrown into. So, you are indeed on Earth after all. That’s a good reassurance.

Her response sounds much lazier than before.

“Yeah~ I don’t know… We are born from fear, I guess? And we eat humans too…”

You shiver when you hear the last statement, but you manage to keep your external calmness. The girl lazily drifts around, crossing her arms. You feel uneasy pressure from her direction.

“We don’t get to do that often now… and with that Spell Card thing, it is even more difficult… but a lot more fun too!”

The girl audibly gets more exciting when she said the last sentence, so you decide to press for some information. You don’t know how long you can hold before you break your Bluff (or Fast Talk, whatever), so you’d better get as much info as possible.

“Spell Cards?”

She glances at you, reverted to her lazy voice.

“Yeah, you know, you make patterns as beautifully as possible, give them meaningful names and identity about you… which does not actually hurt you, and people duel instead of using, you know, violence. And it ends when one side runs out of cards or energy.”

“Hmmm, beautiful pattern and meaningful names, without actually hurting anyone, huh…”

You quickly scan your memory, your past tactics, and your current abilities. You know that the reserve energy you just charged up can power an air combat for a decent duration. You also found four patterns which can be powered under your currently reduced magic control. Looks like you just need to give them names and call it done!

So, your breaking mind tells you to do the most logical thing for an Ordinary Human Being. You clap your hand, and face the girl.

“So, Miss…”

“Rumia is fine.”

“… Rumia, I would challenge you for a Spell Card duel, then!”

Rumia widens her eyes, and seems to be surprised by the sudden request.

“What? Yes, I can do that… but why?”

You finally draw a breath, and let go of your collapsing fake identity, and let out a slightly nervous smile.

“Because I am indeed a human, and I want you to take me to the closest human settlement if I win.”

Long pause, and Rumia widens her eyes even more, and point her finger at you angrily.

“What?! You lied! Dammit I am going to eat you if you lose!”

You revert to a serious face for a last time, and explains at your fastest speech.

“Honestly I am possibly reincarnated in my own body, so technically speaking I am not lying-Woah!”

As you dive towards the sky and narrowly dodged a conical barrage of red energy balls, the duel begins.

Then you realize that you did not specify a limit on the number of Spell Cards.

Oh Crap

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- Pristine and clean
- Magic is marginally functional
- You have more reserve than enough for a regular aerial encounter
- All you need is to name your patterns. Think fast!
- Adrenaline is suppressed, you are ready for combat
- More precisely, you are in combat right now

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. Nothing fancy, but you don’t have shoes

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
- 3 x Scout. Closest one is 50 meters from you
- 1 x Interceptor. Right by your head, pointing at the dangerous innocent looking girl

Choose your past and available Spell Cards:

[ ] Legendary Drone Commander.
- Your primary attack is defense oriented plasma shots
- You get bonus from more Intelligence (noun information)
- You have bonus for Scouts, and you are an excellent tactician
- Shield Sign ~ Plasma Screening
- Drone Sign ~ Planar Strafing
- Automation ~ Multi Flank Dogfighting
- Final Sign ~ Orbital Bombing
[ ] Hyperspeed Glass Cannon
- Your primary attack is offense oriented “machine guns”
- You get bonus from not being hit
- You have bonus for Interceptors, and you were the fastest among your league
- Bullet Sign ~ Rainbow of Dakka
- Shell Sign ~ Blossom of Flak
- Drone Sign ~ Storm of Metal
- Final Sign ~ Spirit of Fire
[ ] One Man Superfortress
- Your primary attack is area denial flak shots
- You get bonus from longer combat duration
- You have bonus for Bombs, and you excel at humongous, complex, self-replicating patterns
- Shield Sign ~ Mirror of Reaction
- Projection Sign ~ Hyperplane of Tesseract
- Fractal Sign ~ Quintic Mandelbulb
- Final Sign ~ Heaven in Flames
[ ] Friend to Most Living Things
- Your primary attack is support oriented photon lance
- You get bonus from higher Sanity
- You have bonus for White Magic, and you are harmonious with nature (hint: fairies don’t attack/prank you)
- Life Sign ~ Desolate place but life finds a way
- Soul Sign ~ Stars are now right yet we do not fright
- Union Sign ~ Human Praise is the Praise of Bravery
- Final Sign ~ Human Greatness is the Greatness of Bravery

---
OOC:
You might have guessed: this vote is critical in deciding future arcs.
Now go find Easter Eggs in the Spell Card names.
No. 197931
[x] Friend to Most Living Things
No. 197933
[X] Friend to Most Living Things

I really hope your other characters aren't as cliché as this Rumia.
No. 197934
>>197933

I kind of deliberately did this, set the tone or something like that. You might have read a lot more material than I did, but I read enough subversion/inversion/aversion that this version is not quite cliche for me.

Honestly, most material I read recently features a friendly Rumia.
No. 197935
Call for
[ ] Friend to Most Living Things

I totally expected this, because it stands out so much. And I think this might lead to the most difficult route: the next update might be your only chance to get a Spell Card battle (we'll see).
No. 197937
OK, don't expect an update soon because I am reciting the Lunatic patterns of Rumia and translating them into 3D.

And I am not good at keyboarding. And joystick doesn't really work out for some reason.
No. 197940
>>197937

Good luck. Rumia's lunatic patterns are very difficult to recite. I gave it a shot yesterday, and couldn't even make it past the first spellcard before my voice gave out.
No. 197945
[x] Hyperspeed Glass Cannon
No. 197947
>>197940

Expect some more time, as I still need to bomb the end of the Lunatic pattern. Pity that I cannot do circular motion very well using keyboard, while joystick gives a huge dead zone.

Translating to 3D using my brain, my conclusion is that you don't freaking want to encounter this thing IRL, and the story will totally reflect that. I am also going to scale the distance with regard to the hitbox size.

I shall have an update either tonight or tomorrow. Again, expect wall of text.
No. 197959
[X] Friend to Most Living Things
- Your primary attack is support oriented photon lance
- You get bonus from higher Sanity
- You have bonus for White Magic, and you are harmonious with nature (hint: fairies don’t attack/prank you)
- Life Sign ~ Desolate place but life finds a way
- Soul Sign ~ Stars are now right yet we do not fright
- Union Sign ~ Human Praise is the Praise of Bravery
- Final Sign ~ Human Greatness is the Greatness of Bravery

In my absent days, I learned three things the hard way.
A – No regular exercise + suddenly doing sports = muscle pain for days
B – Splinter in foot = disaster. Expect death on first encounter
C – Lunatic difficulty is indeed, lunatic. I still don’t know how to perfect run Darkness Sign ~ Demarcation yet

Bear with my poor description on spell cards. I may try to avoid them in the future, as they are so damn visual……

---

Support. Healer. Cleric. Doctor. Whatever the word choice is, you are not a major combatant. Yes, you can control drones, but they are mostly used for self-defense and intel gathering, not serious combat. And you control a total of 4, not a thousand.

But you remember the Code of White Magician (paraphrased): “Never fear; no first strike; be in peace”. You are a White Magician, so patterns and Spell Cards can wait, but you’d better get your primary attack up and running.

You weaved through several cones of projectiles effortlessly. Red energy balls illuminate the surroundings a little, but for your darkness-adapted eyes they are blinding.

You don’t even break a sweat. After all, you are a healer, who also happens to boost ally powers and blind enemy eyes. You are almost always targeted first, and that you stand here means you have survived all your encounters.

Maybe except for the last one, but whatever. You dismiss this stray thought.

You immediately set your Scouts to lock on your enemy, try your best to pick up speed, close your eyes, and use your sense of magic to track all those fast-moving shots.

You take your time dodging shots while keeping about fifty meters of distance. After that scary close encounter just happened seconds ago, you need to calm your mind before starting your offence. You are a white magician, and fear ruins your powers.

Concentrating fully on your body and mind, you watch your thoughts of fear intensely. They try to take over your mind. They try to contract your body. They won’t survive your full, impassive attention. You know these too well. They scream and fade.

You laugh at the disappearing fear, and try to open your eyes, but are immediately greeted with another cluster of blinding red orbs. You finally decide that your vision is simply a distraction.

Then you hear Rumia’s cheery voice. Really, really close.

“Not bad! Human! See if you can handle THIS!”

Deciding that hearing is also a distraction, you shout back using full power of your lungs.

“OF COURSE! I HAVE DONE THIS FOR FIFTY YEARS!”

And right then, you feel a burst of energy clearing all shots from the air. Simultaneously, you hear Rumia’s declaration:

“Night Sign ~ Night Bird”

As the girl in black dress declares, the surrounding suddenly becomes even darker than it already is. Large areas on her sides are lit up, stretches out like wings of a mighty bird. Each side comes with several layers of blue and turquoise shots, each layer easily containing hundreds of orbs. As if the giant bird flaps its mighty wings alternately, the shots on each side whip out simultaneously like crescent currents of wind. – except that they are not crescents, but huge curved multi-layer surfaces containing numerous orbs which easily makes closing in very difficult. As the process repeats, the currents of shots cross each other and become a beautiful torrent of light.

However, you are unfazed by this light show. You ready your Interceptor by your side, then dash straight towards the “wing” of the shots, smirking as Rumia struggles to turn around.

You grin. Why miss such a good chance to bluff? As an Ordinary Human Being, you let out the most evil laugh you can manage, and shout out.

“YOU KNOW HOW TRIVIAL YOUR PATTERNS ARE WHEN I HAVE AUTOMATIC AVOI-”

Before you finish that sentence, you crashed into a turquoise orb straight in your face, causing your eyes to go black and ears to ring, and reminding that your Automatic Avoidance Automata is still offline. You feel like you get punched in your face. The shock caused your stack of Storage spells to lose control and detonate, releasing an enormous wave of blue magic, smearing all nearby orbs like sand.

You curse your carelessness. At these low speeds, you don’t exactly need Automatic Avoidance to survive most patterns, but you require it to free your mind for major offenses. Now that you have no reserve, you have to cut off your acceleration to gain some extra mobility within limits of your power output.

In emergency, you start to charge up a second stack of energy reserve, and order the Interceptor (which is more like a turret now) to fire the least energy intensive pattern. The Interceptor instantly self-destructs due to the depletion of energy, but hundreds of tiny, uniformly spread blue shots tear through the air in an elliptic cone pattern, leading your target’s movement. Rumia quickly dodges to the side, but still takes quite a few hits-

-and get temporarily knocked out of balance by your concussion shots.

For the next few seconds, Rumia’s aim is terribly off, which gives you valuable time to partially charge up your reserves, scrap a Scout, spawn two Fighters, and arrange them as your “wingman”. Then, you need to survive the remaining of the active spell card, and find a good time to test fire your own Spell Card.

You have already weaved through six or seven “flaps” of the wings of bullets, but you still see them coming. You don’t know whether it has a timeout or something, and you are 99 percent sure that you cannot take a second hit without falling unconscious. You check your energy reserve, and find that it’s still too low for your full Spell Card pattern. However, this is a risk worth taking. You inhale deeply, and prepare to declare your own Spell Card.

Wait. Instinct, or experience, tells you that there is a huge loophole in this pattern to be abused. As you rapidly glide left and right and spinning around to avoid shots, your sense of space (courtesy of your Scouts and magic sense) suggests that you should, counterintuitively, stand still.

So you trust your senses, and stand still. You are struck by awe when you notice that you only need minimal movement to graze pass those intimidating shots, because each flap leaves holes in exactly same places!

With your movement reduced, your Fighters finally get the excess energy to attack. Streams of blue shots charge through the air and roar at your target. The small girl is indeed very difficult to hit, due to her mobility and your lack of firepower. However, you have another plan at mind.

You play the pattern of your first Spell Card in your mind over and over, waiting for your reserves to charge up. You hold up your hand, and start to conjure your trusty Photon Lance, a formidable attack which is near impossible to avoid and is very effective at blinding-

-and all you get is a glowing orb on your hand. So much for summoning the power of sun in the middle of night.

Well, maybe it is Spell Card time. You think. At this moment, you hear a sound like glass breaking, and all shots in the air flash and disappear. You somehow instantly know, Rumia’s Spell Card is over.

Rumia quickly dives down, and sweeps across the surface of the lake, doing a good job dodging your shots. Then, she shoots you another conical spread of red orbs, simultaneously with a spherical shell of blue shots. You take two seconds of dodging to swap out another Scout for an Interceptor, and explodes into a blast of bullets. Simultaneously, you start to declare:

“Life Sign ~ Desolat-”

Before you finish, the most anticlimactic thing happens. One moment you see Rumia grazing past the edge of your Interceptor shots, and the next moment you see her crashing straight into the lake, sending out a large splash. Then the lake is broken by numerous smaller splashes and flashes caused by your strafing.

Oh, and all shots in air disappear, and a glass breaking sound is heard. Looks like you just… won…?

You use the remaining Scout to shine a spotlight at Rumia’s last known location. She floats out of the surface, water dripping from her blond hair and flowing like a stream from her dress. She tries to squeeze out some water from her black dress, but it looks completely soaked. She turns to you, blinks and uses her hands to shield her eyes from your spotlight (which is not bright at all), with slight disappointment in her expression.

“Bah, so you win this time, lucky for you.”

Soon enough, she returns to her cheerful voice, ascends toward you and claps her hand.

“Anyways, glad that you didn’t actually lose~ Now come on and let’s go to the Human Village!”

You are surprised by her sudden change of attitude. Didn’t she mention about eating you, just now?

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- White Magician
- Pristine and clean
- Fearless. Temporarily, of course.
- Magic is marginally functional
- You have to ration power between accelerating, turning, attacking, and charging.
- You have enough reserve for a Spell Card
- You have a Spell Card. You want to use it. You did not have the chance. You WANT to use it!!!!

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. Nothing fancy, but you don’t have shoes

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
- 1 x Scout.
- 0 x Interceptor (Self-destructed because you didn’t use your reserve to power it)
- 2 x Fighter

Your Response
[ ] Ask about the change of attitude
[ ] Ruffle Rumia’s hair
[ ] Rematch!
[ ] Write-in

You Plan for Tonight
[ ] Go to this “Human Village”. Maybe find a job, for package delivery or something.
[ ] Ask for directions only. Continue to sleep above the lake
[ ] Ask for directions only. Continue to sleep…?
No. 197960
Well, OK, again I found a few broken sentences (which I missed during proof-read because I have to proof-read my proof-read-edits) after posting. Hopefully it doesn't interfere with the flow.

Also, reading on website is completely different from reading in Word. The paragraphs feel much longer in Word... Maybe I should use Web view for writing.
No. 197962
>>197960

Use a google doc.
No. 197963
[x] Ask about the change in attitude
[X] Ask for directions only, continue to sleep
No. 197965
OK, didn't word votes clearly. The last choice means you get to choose a location which the MC likely knows.
No. 197967
[x] Ask about the change in attitude
[x] Go to this “Human Village”. Maybe find a job, for package delivery or something.
No. 197980
OK, since there are no tie-breakers, I will just try to incorporate both options. Again, expect wall of text.
No. 197992
Right, I notice that one of the votes about sleeping is invalid… Next time I will make things clear.

Sorry for the delay, I was brainstorming the arcs, but they diverge pretty heavily.
[ ] Ask about the change of attitude
[ ] Go to this “Human Village”. Maybe find a job, for package delivery or something.

-O-O-O-

You look at the cheery girl in black dress, who waves at you and slowly ascends through the air. You can’t help but notice her sudden change of attitude. You lift an eyebrow at her, wondering whether she can actually see this tiny expression.

“Um, Rumia? Didn’t you just say something about eating me, like, one minute ago?”

She replies with a mischievous grin.

“Do you want to~”

“No. Of course not.”

You answer with a perfectly straight face, and flicker the dim lights of your drones to emphasize the point. Rumia just shrugs, and gestures you to follow.

“Is that so~ Anyways, if you are not afraid of me, you are not tasty anymore.”

She pauses for a second, then resumes.

“Besides, Yokai aren’t allowed to eat a human right after a Spell Card duel.”

“Oh, I see. Makes sense.”

Right, Spell Card battles are supposed to be non-lethal. Looks like you can put away your worry for now, even though you secretly plan to get a full copy of Spell Card Rules (if it exists) and read all the fine prints. You follow her path, still keeping the Fighters close, but sending the lone Scout to skim the trees. Moments of silence later, you ask.

“So, what actually is this place? Filled with magic, but quite different from where I lived. I assume this is Earth?”

Rumia looks slightly confused.

“Earth? This place is Gensokyo, mostly a place for Yokai! And humans, too!”

“…All right. Mind elaborating a bit?”

The next few minutes involves a brief introduction about this pocket dimension called Gensokyo, where humans and Yokai somehow coexist without too much problems. Oh, and a vague description about some sort of giant border on the edge of the dimension, and someone called Reimu, some sort of shrine maiden, whose job is to beat up anyone that causes trouble. She seems to be a little bitter about the latter.

In exchange, you formally introduce yourself as an Ordinary Human Being who happens to practice (some) white magic, and take a painful ten minutes to explain how white magic is different from whatever the shrine maiden uses, how you are not actually flying with it, and how you are true and honest about your fifteen-year sky voyage.

“Hmm, this is quite a large place.”

You comment because you have flown for about fifteen minutes, but hasn’t seen anything resembling a village. All you see are trees, more trees, and lots of lots of trees.

“You know~ we aren’t flying very fast right now.”

Rumia glides closer to your side, trailing only slightly behind, close enough to grab your feet if she wants to. Even though technically you are not afraid of her, you are still a bit unnerved by the proximation. And no, her innocent smile does not alleviate the feeling. Anyways, you nod at her answer, and start to think about moving faster.

Then you feel a click from your Scout drone.

Wait a moment. No, it’s not Rumia. Your Scout certainly just picked up some sort of presence in the forest, but when you notice it, it disappears. Not hidden, not vanished, but as if it is not there in the first place. Your Scout indeed reports something, but you cannot read it, as if a portion of the metaphorical “screen” is deliberately blurred. To make things even more complicated, the magic beam from yourself doesn’t detect anything at all, but you definitely know something is there: unless your Scout drone has a bug or something (which is, you have to admit, very likely).

You will need to check the logs after reaching this Human Village. Right, you hate debugging, but it’s life, and you need to drop your concerns since fear is the last thing you want right now.

“What’s wrong, mister~”

Rumia obviously senses your unease. You shake your head.

“Nothing. Has to be the wind…”

To break the tense atmosphere (again), you ask.

“So, I saw you appearing in that black sphere.”

“Um-hmm~”

She smiles sweetly, and you continue.

“I told you what magic I use, would you mind explaining what that was?”

You pause for a second, and remarks.

“I have never seen anything like that. Not even in a magical world.”

Rumia spreads her arm like an airplane, and responds in an exciting tone, spins around happily like a child.

“That’s my power of darkness! You wanna see?”

She sure is exciting! Your sense as a white magician doesn’t detect malicious intent… So maybe she is safe now?

Besides, intel is always helpful. You show a small hint of smile, and nod.

“Well, given that I probably can see through it via magic, I would like to see it in action.”

“Yay!”

Rumia sounds really happy. You might actually like her if she didn’t threaten to eat you on first encounter. Moments later, you see the starlight fade, so is the light from your drones.

Oh, and everything sounds like you have a low pass filter over your ear, which really makes you feel isolated from the entire world. Honestly you don’t want to stay any longer in this thing, because that feeling brings back memories.

So that is her power. Darkness it is? You think. That doesn’t explain why this thing block both passive detection and magic beam… Wait, my magic beam actually scatters in this thing!

You suddenly think that it might be a terrible idea to stay in a (psychologically) uncomfortable blob of darkness which possibly interferes with your magic, along with a man-eating innocent looking girl who happens to be the source. You apply some more energy to steer away from Rumia, and-

This is probably what a computer feels when its fuse burns. The tiny agitation caused by increased energy usage shatters the magic grid around you, and you drop out from the sky like a brick, with all active spells destroyed. Moments later, you hear the worried voice of the girl rapidly fading in distance.

“Hey, mister? Where are you? I can’t see y…”

At least you can see the sky now.

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- White Magician
- Pristine and clean
- Startled. YOU ARE IN FREE FALL!!! WITH NO MAGIC!!! You have 5 seconds before you hit the canopy
- Local magic grid blown up, all spells disabled. You need to “reboot” everything, which normally takes 15-20 seconds, but you might do better in emergency
- White magic functional. You cannot fly with white magic

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. Nothing fancy, but you don’t have shoes

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
-None

Your Action
[ ] Emergency reboot! You only need to tune up resonation, filter the magic grid, tap an Amplifier, stabilize the control, cast Body Reinforcement, and cast 9 Thrust! You can, like, totally do these in 5 seconds!
[ ] Shout for help! It might be too low for you to execute a full reboot, but Rumia might be able to pull you up in time
No. 197996
Right, forgot to mention that. I decide that I will write whenever I like if I don't get votes for some time. I will announce, however.

I am still waiting for votes, so feel free to do so.
No. 197997
OK, OK. I don't wanna waste my inspiration, so sorry guys, I flipped a coin and decide

[X] Emergency Reboot
No. 198005
Let’s just say I wanna try dual-scene and stuff like that. And don’t worry, no more than two OC will ever present in this story (I think so, according to plan), and no self-insert whatsoever (I hope I made it right).

[X] Emergency reboot!

-o-o-o-


Somewhere, on Earth.

Concrete wall, bright windows, flickering lamp, meager desk, wobbly chairs, dirty blackboard. A typical, poor, high school club room. Also typical are extravagant names invented, including but not limited to things like “Barrier Busters”, “Mad Scientists”, “King of the Balls”, “Eternal Rivalry of Homo-Sapien and Homo-Zombicus”, “THA SKYNET”, etc.

But those are not important. In this tiny room, a schoolgirl bursts out such a question, politely:

“So, Miss ______, given that you just lectured us a heck load about ‘evil spirits’ and ‘believes’ and ‘expel’ and such, may I ask whether you have dealt with Yokai or not?”

The taller woman sitting across the desk under chalkboard chuckles, and shakes her head.

“No, because Yokai do not exist, and I have never seen one. However-”

She grins slightly, and teases.

“-you might see _other_ Eldritch Abominations lurking in the dark~”

The girl raises an eyebrow, trying to read the woman’s expression.

“Are you serious?”

The woman keeps smiling for a moment, and then changes into a more serious tone.

“No, I was joking. Spirits cannot interfere with physical world very well, so there is no concern about being physically _attacked_ by one, and you cannot be possessed if you have strong will.”

The girl sighs in disappointment.

“Meh, boring world…”

[ ] Write in a name, female: ______



-o-o-o-

Somewhere in Gensokyo, above a pitch black treeline.


“Remember, tapping magic directly from the grid _requires_ the existence of other grid magic users.”
“Remember, white magic is mostly universal, and you may find a way to tap your grid from it.”
“Remember, computational magic components are very fragile. Shut off some if the grid is unstable.”
“Remember, even though magic sense is great, sometimes you should try to use your physical senses.”
“Remember, you need to walk at least once in a while, you are a human, after all.”
“Remember, white magic never exceeds the power of your soul, which… (half an hour of lecture)”
“Remember, the basics of white magic is the pure of heart, will of strength, love of all, and… (half an hour of lecture, too)”
“Remember, consciousness is importance in that… (half an hour of lecture, again)”
“Remember…”
“Remember…”
“Remember…”


That was your Master, who always liked to remind you about the importance of diversity and the fundamentals. And now, as you are dropping into oblivion, you can’t help but wonder whether you rely on a single magic source too much.

Though you are startled by the sudden drop, your mind is clear. You cannot hope to recover all your magic before impact, but you should have time to at least brake your fall.

The next few seconds involves you force-casting Thrust directly using Gensokyo’s unrefined, chaotic, magic grid, and burn your willpower to squeeze magic energy through it, and adjusting the thrust vector in a frenzy trying to balance yourself.

Unfortunately, you now learn the hard way that your assumption about your poor acceleration resistance is true. The sudden shock of turning on Thrust almost black you out, but you successfully stabilize your output long enough to slow down considerably without throwing yourself into a spiral. Then, you break through the canopy, gaining a dozen scratches all over your body, then fortunately bounce off a large mushroom safely. You almost choke on the spores released by the impact, but you use some rudimentary control on Fire to burn off the nasty spores surrounding you without triggering a dust explosion, and drop-rolls on the dark forest ground without sustaining damage. You stand up, and look around.

Dark. Pitch black. Not quite as suffocating as Rumia’s darkness, but still unpleasant to stay in.

At least no low pass filter over my ear. You think. You plan on tuning up your magic as soon as possible, and get out of this dangerous-looking forest. Flying.

You ignore the pain on your body, and spend a moment to filter the magic around, making the grid surrounding you much more stable and refined. Then all you need to do is cast a few Thrust, and-

-your left arm is gripped by a living vine. Without second thought, you pull out your machete- you mean sword, and chop the vine clean off. You turn around, and see the silhouette of a tree, sprawling vines like tentacles, trying to surround you.

You know, I am supposed to be friend of nature. You calmly think. If something non-intelligent from nature tries to attack you, all you need to do is this:

Hold up your hand, and cast the most basic white magic directly into the attacking creature and surrounding environment, and commands sternly-

“HALT!”

-and the vines stop. You reach out your hand with a calming smile on your face, and lightly stroke the closest of the smooth, green (you can’t actually see the color) vine. You speak gently.

“Good tree, good tree~ Now a reward~”

You sheath your sword, and focus on the tree’s aura, looking for its scars and wounds. You guide a gentle stream of magic through the vine, and cleanse the clogged life energy out of damaged portions.

You chuckle a bit as the vines surrounding you retracts fluidly, and feel a pleasant resonation from the plant.

Plants and animals are such simple souls to appease. Heal them, they like you. You can’t help but smile lightly, feeling much calmer than a minute ago.

“Mister? Where are you?”

Oh right, _her_. Your smile drops. Now you feel uneasy again.

Some crackles of branches later, you look up and see the familiar red-glowing eyes of Rumia. You wave back and shout.

“One moment! I got hit by something and fell, just give me thirty seconds!”

OK, you lied about the “hit by something” part, but you do not plan to expose your weakness. You quickly cast Body Reinforcement, and start to work out the nine Thrust one by one. However, somebody seems to be impatient.

“Oh, come on~ We are wasting time~”

With a cheerful laugh, the little girl dives behind you, tugs you under your shoulder, and effortlessly lifts you into the air.

“W-Wait! I am done! I can fly now!”

Your mind struggles a bit to keep the magic grid stable, but you manage to finish your “startup sequence” just a few seconds later. However, Rumia simply giggles and completely ignores your protest.

Well, at least she doesn’t get any funny ideas about the situation. You are, however, fully prepared to blast her in the face at any moment. Perhaps with Fire, mixing with a bit Air and a tiny amount of Water. Plasma is always formidable.

The remaining of the trip is surprisingly uneventful and quiet. You do notice that you completely overestimated Rumia’s strength on first encounter, which was based on her “detected energy level”. Yes, you would still probably be torn apart if she has a grip on you (like, right now), but your Body Reinforcement should allow sustaining a few direct blows before crippling damage is done.

You are dropped down a fair distance away from what looks like a medium-sized town, with barely visible walls lit by torches. You wave goodbye to Rumia, and floats idly towards the gate.

The trip to the gates is also uneventful, except that you trip yourself a few times and scratch your bare feet when approaching the guards, once more when you meet a tall woman with silver-blue hair and wearing a building-like hat who calls herself Kamishirasawa Keine and the protector of the village. You get some strange eyes and comments about your luck when you tell her Rumia brought you back. Then you accidentally kick a random rock lying on the ground, step on another one, and finally in a bout of frustration decide to just float your way into the temporarily arranged room. In Keine’s house, nonetheless.

You figure that your young appearance, your clothes full of holes, your scratches all over your body, and your repeated fumbling must have affected Keine’s decision. Whatever the reason is, you can definitely use some practice on, of all things, walking, but that is the plan for tomorrow, apart from finding a job. Right now, you just want to address your scratches and enjoy a safe night of sleep, surrounded by actual walls and a solid ceiling. In your “air bed”, of course. Nothing can rival the comfort and softness of a bed made of air.

Day 0 Ends.

-o-o-o-

Day 1 Starts

So, there is the familiar beam of sunlight, shining in your face, but why does it feel… obstructed? What is that smell of wood and dust? Why do you sense anomaly?

You open your eyes, and find that you are floating in a cavity inside a pile of furniture.

“What, the, hell?”

You can’t help but curse out loud. Did you sleep so sound that your magic senses were completely turned off? No, you are still floating, so your magic worked throughout the night. More impressively, those furniture achieve a delicate balance, which means someone took the time to pile these around you without being noticed.

This is bad. Really bad. You must have met your biggest nightmare: something that can completely evade your detection.

As you carefully cast multiple Thrust to stabilize and remove the tables, chairs, random pots and vases, and freaking knives piled all around you, you hear the door sliding, and the distinct feminine voice of Keine-

“What’s wrong-”

-which cuts off abruptly. Your view is blocked by a table in front of your eyes, but you reply a bit anxiously, if not irritated.

“No idea. I woke up and everything is piled around me! I didn’t even detect anyone, and that is not supposed to happen!”

You hear a long sigh, and possibly a facepalm. A few footsteps later, the knives are taken away by a slender hand, and you push out the small cabinet at your feet with Thrust, then glides yourself out of the opening.

As you flip yourself upright and land softly, you ask, while bowing slightly.

“So… Miss Kamishirasawa, do you have any idea who the… culprit might be?”

Keine only holds her hand at her forehead, with a slightly troubled expression.

“Call me Keine. I can think of one, but I am not entirely sure.”

Then she turns towards you, lightly smiling, as if a parent towards her grown-up child.

“You do look after yourself quit well, aren’t you?”

And you confidently reply.

“I do think so. I did manage to defeat Rumia by crashing her into the lake, after all. In fact, I intend to look for a job today, since I am fully capable of taking care of myself, and I would prefer to contribute to the community.”

Then you make a glimpse to your feet, and murmurs.

-and probably practice walking a little.

She giggles a bit, and gestures you to follow.

“You totally should~ Now tell me what kind of jobs you have in mind?”

“OK, let’s see…”

And congratulations, you just managed to walk outside of the door without tripping yourself!

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- White Magician
- Tiny external scratches, almost healed by now. You might want to take a shower
- Peaceful and calm
- Grid magic marginally functional. Your control is very accurate and precise, but not powerful
- White magic confirmed functional. Friend of Most Living Being fully in effect

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. You received a pair of grass slippers

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
-None

Your Target Job
[ ] Healer. White magic heals, it’s common sense
[ ] Gensokyo-wide Mailman. You can go very, very fast, rivaled only by a handful of wizards who are currently in another dimension
[ ] Teaching Assistant, maybe? You still remember and use advanced math and computer science, even to this date
[ ] Others?

Your Plan for Today’s Free Time (You can use 5 hours) *Note
[ ] Set up permanent logging for your Scouts. You want to check if anything bypasses your senses
( ) Tune up your magic. Get a more stable grid, more control over elements, and get more power output in general
( ) Attempt to tap white magic into grid [maybe it will work?]. Theoretically possible, but who knows if it will work.
[ ] Communicate with local flora. If local creatures like you, you can use some significant energy boost in white magic
( ) Practice large scale magic control [a few hours, maybe]. Control lots of spells at the same time. Or move numerous objects.
( ) Fix automaton: Automatic Projectile Avoidance [a few hours, maybe]. Avoids objects automatically. Not smart, but allows you to safely go supersonic in combat
( ) Fix automaton: Advanced Interception [a few hours, maybe]. Command your Interceptors (Or yourself. Or other drones) without your conscious mind
[ ] Fix automaton: Advanced Pattern Control. Shoot more projectiles, more accurately, and deadlier patterns.
( ) Fix automaton: Central Processing Unit [this takes a long time]. Make other automatons smarter!
(The rest of the time) Just relax, maybe?

*Note: Square brackets [ ] means Boolean/yes/no choices. Round brackets ( ) use integers. [something] means you need to spend multiple units to get one notch of improvement. You can also rob some time from your sleep, but it may have adverse effects. Excess hours in one task will be spilled out to complete more “upgrades”
Also note: try to guess who you may face next. It might be a good idea to choose your “upgrades” wisely.
Additional note: I don’t think you will have time to upgrade everything during the arcs. There will be peaceful time-skips where you can allocate dozens of hours
No. 198007
>>198005

Just a heads up for the future: things like italics sadly don't work in the title section.
No. 198009
>>198007
Oh, OK. I saw old threads doing crazy stuff in their titles. Maybe those are unicode.
No. 198014
Yeah, OK, screw the upgrades system. Too complicated for this board. I will wait for one or two days for votes. After next update I am going to ditch the "upgrades" altogether, given that they are not *that* central to the plot.
No. 198015
>>198014

It's not necessarily too complicated, it's more that the board has a small community. Those upgrades could be a hook, or they could be a reason for avoidance, depending on who your readers are and how you handle them. If you think you are skilled enough to make it interesting, then it should be fine I'd imagine. Otherwise, yes, removing them is likely for the best.
No. 198017
[X] Healer. White magic heals, it’s common sense

(X) Tune up your magic. Get a more stable grid, more control over elements, and get more power output in general

Really don't want to just fall out of the the air like that again.
No. 198018
I guess I will just go writing. If the board is slow, I'll just throw in bigger updates
No. 198019
[ ] Healer. White magic heals, it’s common sense
( ) Tune up your magic. Get a more stable grid, more control over elements, and get more power output in general
And some other things I choose. No more complicated upgrades system from this point on!

Also, I actually have problem visualizing MC’s Spell Cards, and have trouble integrating them into my plans. So let’s just ignore those four I put up when you chose your past, m’kay? It’s not like we have Spell Card battles very often.

Oh, and I will probably omit Day X announcement after this update, because uneventful days will be summarized and skipped. You probably don’t want to read about healing a hundred different patients, because this is not a medical fic.
-o-o-o-
Somewhere, on Earth.

Concrete wall, bright windows, flickering lamp, meager desk, wobbly chairs, dirty blackboard. Again

“Now, now, now. Why on Earth would you think I can open an interdimensional portal?”

The woman shows a “friendly” smile towards the rag tag group of crazy students. The schoolgirl who thinks life is boring responds with puppy eyes.

“But didn’t you say it is theoretically possible~”

A small facepalm.

“Listen. You want ‘demonstration’ of magic. Fine, just prepare for sanity explosion, but that is way above my level. Plus-”

The woman looks at the booklet in her hand, then looks at a whole wall of pictures about Touhou fanworks, and raises an eyebrow.

“-you must be kidding when you ask me to not only perform one of the most difficult tasks in the universe, but also perform it on a fictional destination?”

“Eh… Hahaha…”

The girl laughs uneasily. Then, her expression suddenly brightens. A mischievous grin creeps up on her face.

“Oh, Miss Magician~ Does that mean you are not a real magician as you claimed to be~?”

The woman smiles, not a tiny bit agitated.

“I see where you are going. It doesn’t hurt to try, though: it’s good for health to stay around my magic, after all.”

Now it’s her turn to grin.

“And don’t freak out if the portal actually works~”

Said that, she picks up a piece of chalk lying around, and starts to draw a circle on the blackboard.

-o-o-o-

In Human Village, Gensokyo.

Job, huh.

You can fly, but that skill is quite common here. You can fly very fast, but you don’t want to risk another “grid rupture”. You can fight, but currently you are not in best shape. You do know Computer Science very well, but teaching those to people with Meiji-period knowledge on a magic land would be a painful experience. What else can you do?

White magic, right. One of the fundamental magics, one that accelerates healing and alleviates insanity, one that blesses the land and fertile the soil. You can never have too many white magicians. Too bad there are so few of them.

You plan on starting out small, so you decide to limit you scope for now. You raise your head, acknowledging Keine that you have an answer, and she nods to you, prompting you to go on.

“My magic heals. Maybe not major injuries or poison, but I can help with small problems like a cold, headache, heartburn, stiff or pulled muscle, depression, anger problems, voice in head, minor spiritual problems, driving away evil spirits, things like those. With zero cost.”

The silver-haired woman seems a little surprised, and lightly lowers her head to look at your eyes with a pleasant smile.

“Oh my, what a long list. Hmm~ I suppose you can use an empty house there.”

A house? You are surprised now.

“A house? Isn’t that a bit too generous of you?”

She nods, and gestures you to follow.

“It is OK, it is yours now. No one lives in it, and it will probably be taken apart soon. If you need help in fixing anything, feel free to ask us, and you can use it for your… clinic, too.”

“Thank you very much. I will use my best service for this village to repay your generosity.”

You reply humbly. No doubt that Keine is a very nice person to talk with, one that doesn’t force you to read meaning between words and talk political nonsense. She definitely has the wisdom to be the guardian of the village.

A few minutes later, you stand in front of this… deserted house. From outside, it looks like a bar, but there is quite some space inside. The house doesn’t look well maintained, but walls and doors seem intact, and the wooden windows are tightly closed. Surprisingly, there is a small garden behind it, though it is overgrown with wild grass.

For the next fifteen minutes, Keine and you (and your Scouts) performs a quick survey on the ground floor, attic, and basement. You inspect the three empty rooms, the dusty bathroom, the bar, the attic, and the basement. You tell Keine that you need at most two days and some materials to get the clinic running. When asked about furniture, you smile and answer that nothing beats sleeping in air. This answer gain you another weird look. As Keine left, you ask for some wooden boards and fireclay, and she tells you a simple order like that should deliver in the afternoon.

Next, you spend two hours sweeping and mopping the entire house. As an Ordinary Human Being, of course, you pick up five brooms, and use Thrust to control them. It not only saves your strength, but also gives you a chance to tune your magic grid. You cannot afford to drop out from the air again, so you’d better make your grid stronger. Aside from cleaning the rooms, you have several other plans on hand.

First, you need to create a few magic gadgets, most importantly the drone logger. If time and material permit, you may also make a magic grid stabilizer of some sort.

Second, you plan to clean up any malicious energy stuck around this house. The moment you step into the place, you feel just how stagnant the atmosphere is. A white magician like you do not like this energy. You want to be surrounded by calm, peace, and serenity, especially when you are supposed to heal other people. After that, you shall set up a small region in the basement to contain and absorb any powerful negative energy which you cannot process.

There might be a third part, but you decide not to stretch yourself.

For the next hour or so, you pick up a random piece of broken wood and use your Photon Lance to engrave the drone logger, and cut it into shape of an amulet. The process is very tedious and mechanical, but as long as the amulet is powered, nothing can erase its memory. You decide against creating a grid stabilizer because “random piece of wood” may be inappropriate material for a task which potentially involves powering supersonic flight and shooting big lasers. And then you spend another two hours to meticulously clean up all traces of negative energy in the house, inch by inch. Fortunately, once it is cleaned up, the space will not get “infected” as easily, especially after you put up the containment zone inside the basement.

You are not a very powerful white magician, but you are satisfied by how much you can do right now. You open your arms and stretch yourself in the much more pleasant and cleaner house. No more feeling of stagnation, and the air radiates with life. Not quite as good as you wish, but you have done an amazing job on cleaning up the energy in just two hours, so you don’t complain.

After lunch (Keine kindly helped you on this matter, and you promised to pay back), the afternoon is spent on waiting for material delivery, and clearing the drainage system with your drones. The cleaning involved shoving a Fighter Drone down a pipe to vaporize clogs with a flame, and using the another (clean) drone to patch up holes with clay and glaze with the same fire.

Yeah, you should totally rename “Fighter Drone” to “Utility Drone”. Sadly, you still don’t have enough power to produce concentrated bolts of plasma, yet.

The day goes on surprisingly peacefully, in contrast to what you experienced outside the village. No angry villagers, no gangsters, no curious people gathering, no random Yokai attacks, and no evil spirits sealed in basement. Looks like you might be able to run the place tomorrow. Now it’s time to take a nice, hot bath.

Nightfall.

Uneventful End of Day 1

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- White Magician
- Tiny external scratches, almost healed by now.
- Clean and pristine
- Grid magic marginally functional. Your control is very accurate and precise, but not powerful
- White magic confirmed functional. Friend of Most Living Being fully in effect

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- 1 x Drone Logger Amulet. Remembers everything your Scouts detect
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. You have a pair of grass slippers

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells
- Miasma Containment. Basic white magic spell, just draw a circle and say or paraphrase “I need a barrier HERE” (works better with a heart full of love)

Your Active Drones
-Scout x 3
-Fighter x 1

(continued…)
No. 198020
Yeah, I told you my upgrades will be BIG. And time-skipped so that the boring stuff are left out.

Time to introduce the second PC. I will always develop two side in each update.
-o-o-o-
(continued…)
-o-o-o-
Somewhere, on Earth.

Concrete wall, bright… Screw it.

The blackboard is now covered by… Well, a series of perfectly drawn circles. It is amazing to see someone to hand-draw circles that look as round and symmetric as those produced by a compass.

Maybe the ability of drawing circles is required for any magicians.

“… communicating with another universe, huh… How can this be executed… Sure I will get lots of experience even if I fail…”

“… if Yokai actually exist there and have functional bodies, my spirit spells might not work very well…”

Mumbling and mumbling and mumbling, the self-proclaimed-top-tier-white-magician grabs a wooden stick she brought in, attaches a whole bunch of paper squares which she calls “energy spiker” using a small metal clip, and turns towards the class-skipper.

“Attention, girl. Never, ever, follow me unless I have demonstrated that I can walk back. Understand?”

“Oh~ Are you that confident?”

The girl nearly jumps at excitement, and Miss Magician smiles.

“Not confident, but I can try. You might want to close the door, and…”

Then follows a sleep-inducing talk about fifty possible emergency situations and how the girl should respond on the Earth side.

Anyways, Miss Magician shoves a blank notebook and a pencil into her pocket, and pokes her wooden stick (which totally does not look like a gohei) forward, towards the shaded window.

A blast of blinding light later, all those paper squares burst into smokeless flame, leaving the schoolgirl gasping and speechless, almost forgetting how to breath.

Seconds later, a miracle occurs: an extremely faint glowing line, floating vertically, fixed in air.

Miss Magician’s expression is filled with delight and awe. Moments later, she concentrates her will and energy, and tries to expand this one-dimensional connection. At first, her energy is completely blocked out, but a few seconds later, the line suddenly expands into a faintly glowing hollow ellipse, revealing a vast bamboo forest in its center.

Still in awe, Miss White Magician’s expression quickly changes into suspicion. She extends her arm to prevent any ruthless advance of the overexcited schoolgirl who barely keeps herself from screaming WOW.

“Hold on, that takes magnitudes less energy than I expected. Actually it did not take any energy at all. Suspicious. Something is not right”

“Oh~ Maybe a certain Miss Yakumo gave you a hand!”

Schoolgirl joyfully suggests, and nudges towards the opening. But the white magician stops her again, and turns her face sternly.

“Not funny. Do not follow me. I will take one step in, then back out. But first-”

The woman picks up a piece of broken chalk, and throws it at the portal.

It passes through, and lands on the forest ground.

“So, no danger of disintegrating. Then let me take a step…”

The woman clenches her stick, keeps her eye on the portal, and steps into the ground of the bamboo forest. So the portal indeed works. However, there is one problem.

Where’s that unnatural shadow coming from?

-o-o-o-

In White Magician’s Clinic, Gensokyo.

Your life goes on smoothly for the previous few days. You never felt that unperceivable presence again, and you started by walking around in neighborhood and spotting people with subhealth conditions or minor illness, and talking them into trying your treatments.

Most of the minor problems you spot require only a flush of clogged life energy. A common cold is easy enough to fix, so is sour muscle. You can see the tensed-up parts relax as you gently guide a stream of magic through the body, and facial features always show more peace as the treatment goes on. The process is very meditative, as you need to focus intensely to “feel” the patient through your own soul (or is it consciousness?), and precisely and steadily guide magic to damaged and clogged organs.

As expected, treating humans is much, much harder than healing a tree. Obviously, the body is extremely complex, and you must make sure the patient has absolute belief on you, or you will be fighting against his or her own life energy, which exacerbates the symptom. Fortunately, subhealth conditions are generally simple enough for you to safely build your reputation.

You walk to the front door and flips a wooden sign to show “Closed”. Today you will have an early break to restock supplies and have fun, and you have only one patient here.

“All right, let me see. Please lie down on this bench.”

You carefully help the old man with hunched back to sit down on an exam table you bought from the kappas. You don’t understand why there is a self-destruct button on a purely mechanical device, but it is still better than wasting a day to construct one from scratch. You already hid the button behind a metal case.

After adjusting the inclination of the seat, you stand alongside with the old man, and hold up a checklist.

“In accordance to standard procedure for any white magician, I will tell you exactly what I am going to do. Now, do you permit me to resonate and examine your inherent energy?”

The old man nods, sending a creak from his neck.

“Yes, please go on.”

You walk up and place your hand on the back of his neck, and start to check his energy. You close your eye for a few moments, and say.

“… Your life energy is severely clogged up, but I can clear up your muscle tremble and aches. You also have a malicious spirit jamming up your mind, harvesting bad thoughts you generate. With my current abilities and equipment, I cannot do anything to your hunched back, eyesight, hearing, and heart problem. Do you agree me to treat your back, your limbs, and your possession?”

The old man lets out a short laugh.

“Ha! So my body is still salvageable, huh? Of course you can, go on.”

You smile back, and pulls out a strip of paper from a stack, writing something on the square.

“Anyone still alive is salvageable. I am but one who calls up on power of the collective soul to buy precious time for individuals suffering illness. Please make good use of the extra time to be a better person. Your good thoughts will replenish any energy I draw.”

Next, you sit aside the man, and hold his right hand, and hold the paper square on the back on his neck.

“Now please relax, it is normal to experience pain, especially when it comes to the possession. It will do everything to keep itself inside you. You may suffer sudden contraction and headache, which are also normal. If pain gets unbearable, perform any movement and I will stop. I will also stop if the possession attempts to paralyze you.”

You spend about ten minutes guiding your magic, slowly seeping it through the battered body of the old man. Layer by layer, you peel off clogged energy accumulated from a lifetime of negative thoughts and physical injuries. You smile as you see life slowly comes back to his pale, wrinkled, bloodless cheek. Muscles that has been contracted and ached for who-knows-how-many-years finally starts to relax, relieving the man from an eternal pain. You can even hear light crackles as the body loosens up.

Now, it’s time for the possession. Long time subconscious possessions are always pain to deal with. They seriously interfere with the thoughts of the host, so you must remove them even if it is only remotely possible. In this case, said spirit is not powerful. All it does to fight the extraction is to tense up the old man’s neck and stings your palm.

The old man must have a strong will, or it won’t be this easy. You smile. Too bad that his body is already deteriorating from old age. Speaking of which, the old man stares at you wide eyed.

“Wow, my back and legs aren’t painful anymore! And those annoying thoughts… they are gone! Were those the… possession, you mentioned?”

You nod as you peel off the piece of paper, open a hatch on the floor, then roll up and dump the paper inside, then help the old man stand up.

“Yes, but remember this: all possessions are attracted by your negative thoughts. Fear, anger, guilt, and some other emotions will quickly gain you another possession, especially in Gensokyo. Your treatment is finished. Choose your own price and drop the money in that box.”

Many thanks from the old man later, you turn away from the money box. It might be a crazy idea to let the patient choose his price, but most white magician healers you saw do this, and it is good for building communal trust, too. You just hope that you can actually keep the clinic running like this.

Closing the day, you survey the building, and make sure one last time that the ambient energy is absolutely serene. Then, you proceed to your garden, which is now planted with various random flowers, close your eyes, and start to pour in the same magic you use to heal.

You marvel how Gensokyo is practically overflowing with life energy: you bet that you can plant anything on Earth here just by pouring water over the soil. However, since you can never have too much life energy, you still perform the small “ritual” daily, anyways. Who knows when you will need your plants to return you a favor, right? And most importantly, you don’t really need to take care of your garden manually in this way. Maybe you should turn it into a potato field.

As you pour more life energy into the ground, for some reason you see a fairy zipping out of the dirt and ascend into sky. You ignore it completely.

After the routine checks, you lock the door, and float into the sky. Even though you no longer trip yourself on the ground, you still like flying better. You still don’t have time to finish tuning the Automatic Projectile Avoidance system, but at least you have enough power budget to accelerate and turn simultaneously, and you are unlikely to suffer another grid rupture.

So, if you pick another Spell Card battle against Rumia, you will probably win, legitimately. You believe in your decades of air combat experience.

Speaking of whom, it doesn’t take you too long to spot a familiar black sphere drifting over the treetop of Forest of Magic. Since you are 99% confident that you can beat her, you drift up closer and yell out loud.

“HEY, RUMIA!”

The darkness dissolves, and you see a familiar little girl who also happens to be extremely dangerous, clad with black dress and white blouse, blond hair and— Wait a moment.

“Oh hello, mister! It’s the fourth time we meet!”

She is as cheerful as usual, and holds a hand to block sunlight from her eyes. However, you have some more important question to ask.

“… Rumia, what’s happening with your hair? Let me see…… Thirteen ribbons? Seriously?”

You must say that she looks ridiculous like that, with locks of short blond hair and small ribbons poking out of every direction, making her head look like a messy golden and red spike ball. That does not mean she is less cute looking like so. That also doesn’t make you feel any less uneasy around her.

Rumia frowns a little, and says.

“Meh, long story~”

You float by her side, flipping yourself so you suspend head-down, making your hair flow in an equally ridiculous way.

“Do you mind sharing? Believe it or not, I am a really good listener.”

Her red eyes meet yours. She giggles at your peculiar position, then turns away.

“Is that so~?”

You nod.

“That is so.”

Rumia opens her arms and stretches herself, then continues.

“Last night I saw a woman in the bamboo forest, and I tried to eat her!”

OK, you already regret asking, but you did say you are a good listener.

“She shot me with those totally useless lights, I didn’t even feel anything! Then I tried to catch her-”

You don’t like where this is going, but Rumia sounds a bit down.

“-but then she stuck lots of glowing paper on my head and I lost her… and they turn into ribbons!”

“Um… well-”

You do not know how to comment on this story. Not that it is long, but you are silently praying for that lost woman. Hopefully she managed to get out safely. You spin yourself upright, and look at all those ribbons.

Glowing white paper, huh? You wonder what they are, so you focus a bit…

Of the thirteen ribbons (still a bizarre phrase to think about), twelve seems to be paper heavily saturated in white magic. The last one, presumably the original one, does not respond to your probing in any perceivable way. You also notice that the twelve new ones seem to be shimmering with very thin and faint red, translucent glow.

But, white magic? Was that woman also a white magician?

You sincerely wish that she got out alive, since white magicians are extremely scarce.

“Rumia, did you try to… remove them?”

She glances at you again, crossing her small hands behind her head, purses her lips, seems to be quite unhappy.

“Yeah~ They are stuck, and they look ridiculous!”

Hmm, if those white magic, you should be able to remove them. Given that her ability is not affected at all, you assume that it is safe to remove those twelve.

Right?

So you do what an Ordinary Human Being would do.

“Rumia, please stand still-”

She is a bit confused, but stands still anyways.

“Hmm?”

You extend your hand, and lightly brush through the ribbons. Twelve of them disintegrate into glowing dust, while the last one still does not respond in any way. Those twelve seem to be some sort of seal that failed miserably at their intended task. Perhaps the woman ran away only because she was in the Bamboo Forest of Lost.

“-done.”

You clap your hand, and Rumia stares at you in surprise, then zips closer to give you a bear hug at your waist.

“Wow, thank you! You are a good human!”

You can only laugh awkwardly against this bone-crushing force. Thankfully you have Body Reinforcement turned on.

“…Ha, ha, ha, thank you…”

Then she looks up at you, and lets out the sweetest smile you have ever seen.

“Then can I eat you now?”

You change into poker face immediately.

“No.”

“Meh~”

And Rumia releases you and drifts away.

Now is noon. The rest of the day is yours.

Your Status

- Ordinary Human Being
- White Magician
- Tiny external scratches, almost healed by now.
- Peaceful and calm
- Grid magic marginally functional. Your control is very accurate and precise, but not powerful
- White magic confirmed functional. Friend of Most Living Being fully in effect

Your Inventory

- 1 x Water bottle. Nice and sturdy, filled with fresh water
- 1 x Sword and scabbard. Built to be abused, good for both utility and fighting
- You cannot fight with it effectively right now
- 1 x Leather belt. Your sword holster and water bottle are attached to it
- 1 x Small cloth bag of steel balls. Why on Earth do you have these?!
- 1 x Drone Logger Amulet. Remembers everything your Scouts detect
- 1 x Regular wooden stick. You use it as a physical medium for white magic
- Cotton shirt, trousers and various clothing. You received a pair of grass slippers
- Enough cash to buy ordinary items

Your Spells
- Thrust. Reactionless propulsion. You fly with this.
- Command Drone. Four types are currently available, with cap of 4. To switch type or loadout, you must destroy the drone and respawn
- Scout. Enlarges your detection zone, relays information, and act as spotlight or designator. Can be commanded over great distance
- Interceptor. Small, extremely fast and agile. Consumes ridiculous amount of magic while fighting. Can be commanded within a few kilometers
- Fighter. All-around type, do whatever you want with them. Jack-of-all-trade, master-of-none. Can be commanded over great distance
- Bomb. What to say? A homing bomb! Can be commanded over great distance
- Some control over elements Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. Not synchronized enough for spells

Your Active Drones
-Scout x 3
-Fighter x 1

Your Plan for the Break
[ ] Fly around Gensokyo, at top speed
[ ] Fly around Gensokyo, at leisurely pace
[ ] Practice damuku a bit. Plasma and big lasers
[ ] Everyone important have ribbons. You should buy one, too
No. 198022
This is a short side-story I am putting up while waiting for votes. Please vote! Timeline will not be specified, but any characters here can be encountered.

-o-o-o-

The Forest of Magic can be divided into three rings. The outer ring resembles a regular forest, albeit infested with lesser Yokai. The middle ring is so heavily forested that no sunlight may penetrate the canopy, and large mushrooms grow with amazing amount of magic. The core, however, are filled with enormously dangerous creatures and plants, and no sane person or Yokai will attempt to approach.

Yet at the edge of this ring, there is a strange, rectangular clearing, barren in ash and soot, shimmering under the bright moon light. On the center of the clearing, there is a flat, star-shaped structure surrounded by shallow earth ramps, which have numerous menacing spikes of green glass protruding outward and towards the sky. Contouring the malicious structure is a deep moat, blazing, sizzling lava light up the night sky. A lone, shining steel drawbridge covers the only entrance to this isolated structure.

The bridge is lowered. Between the humongous rotating gears, there is a pitch black tunnel, rough and deep and dark, as if piercing into hell itself. The mighty bridge slams across the moat. So heavy and mighty it is, that anything attempting to block its unimaginable momentum will be crushed into oblivion, never to be discovered again.

A floating orb of utter darkness lands on the outside of the bridge. A blond girl touches her small feet on this undecorated yet magnificent construct, her features light up from the devilish glow of boiling lava underneath, fully exposing her terrifying grin, her canine sharp as razor, her blazing red eyes, and her eerie cuteness.

*Stump*

*Stump*

Heavy, powerful footsteps echo in the dark corridor. The sheer determination and awe-striking might threaten to shaken the Earth itself.

*Clang*

A dark silhouette steps on the bridge. The bridge, made of solid steel of incredible thickness, trembles under the impact, shaken into its core.

*Clang*

The figure is even shorter than the devilish girl on the other side, yet possesses an extremely powerful build. His entire body clad in full suit of armor, masterfully crafted and glows with shimmering sky blue, barely revealing countless scars under his helmet and the savage, thick, beard. On his right hand is a steel crossbow: all craftsmanship is of highest quality, encrusted with bands of gold and engraved with life history of its user. On his left hand is a mind-boggling gigantic sword, masterfully crafted and radiates immense hostility in its sky-blue reflection, threatening to cleave apart the very space. On his back is a worn-out copper pickaxe, full of scratches and dents, coated with rock bits, soil dust, and dried blood.

He stabs the giant sword into the bridge, easily piercing the thick, strong steel. The large hand clad in sky-blue pulls out a skin of the most powerful booze in existence, and he gulps it down like water.

He grabs the sword, and points the crossbow forward. He declares in a booming voice, almost rippling the air, audible for miles-

“THY DEMON OF DARKNESS! THIS SHALT BE THY LAST NIGHT!”

The smiling lips curves up slightly, and the demon answers in a sweet, childish voice.

“Is that so~”

-o-o-o-

If you haven’t noticed, this is a Dwarf Fortress reference. You know, dwarfs are mythical creatures too. Maybe someday I will write a story about a lone dorf carving out his own fortress in Gensokyo.
No. 198025
>[ ] Everyone important have ribbons. You should buy one, too

[X] Everyone important has a ribbon. You should buy one too.

-OR-

[X]All important people have ribbons. You should buy one too.

The difference has to do with staying consistent with singular/plural word choices throughout the sentence.

You have a lot of grammar and syntax errors. I've noticed most of these errors seem to revolve around choosing the choosing the correct past imperfect participle, past participle, present perfect participle, or future perfect participle. These immersion-breaking errors are extremely jarring to native English speakers, and is probably why you aren't getting votes.

Participle, tense, and singular/plural errors are very common among people who learn English through years of study. I suggest watching TV for 30 minutes before you start writing, and reading your update aloud after you finish.

[X] Everyone important has a ribbon. You should buy one too.
No. 198027
>>198025

Hmm, sorry about that, I will see how "reading out loud" works. I write English mostly in academic setting, like a thesis, so I rarely touch anything other than present tense. I am not sure how watching TV helps fixing my grammar, though.
No. 198030
Writing.
No. 198031
>>198027

If it's in English, it would help iron out those issues, I'd imagine.
No. 198037
?>>198027

I suggested watching TV because I believe immersion will help with your participle usage errors. I was also hoping it would make you realize your characters sound like machines, since most people don't talk using proper/formal English.