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File 169415226023.png - (307.46KB, 1500x1500, face_of_the_woman.png)
face_of_the_woman
Nothingness. Who would've known the best feeling was the absence of feeling the whole time. You swim in the border of everlasting peace and finite suffering. At last you are free. Free from what? NO! You shouldn't ask that you'll be banished- banned from peace. Though you've already asked haven't you, you must've because you're already being kicked out as we speak. The nothingness is becoming somethingness. That something is me. You feel it don't you? The pulses of life firing out from your brain in rapid succession- oh yes your brain the symbol of our something. I'm afraid me and you will have to cut this conversation off- YOU ARE BECOMING FINITE ONCE MORE CHILD! Try to enjoy yourself a little more than the last time. Kehehehe. I'll be watching from my spot in non-existence until you need my wisdoms. The voice muddles until it's no longer comprehensive and soon enough it's overpowered by chirping and rushing water. Your eyelids push themselves upwards as a soft yellow light from the east fills your synapses. You feel everything making contact with you from the sunlight to the patch of grass your body had collapsed into. You are in pain. Your brain begs you with sharp jolts to return to where you came but you're awake. Undeniably finite once more. Your left hand moves to the side of your face and tries to ease just a tad bit of the pain- no use. A groan escapes from you and your nostrils are burned with the smell of alcohol from your breath. You jitter, turning your torso to your left. Bottom still planted firmly to the floor you couldn't even imagine trying to stand right now. However, when you make the full turn you are met by a river and laying across that river's skin is a face. Oh fuck- what happened? It's almost like the reflection is a separate entity, disappointed by you. What did you do to this poor girl? What did you do to yourself? You can't even force the muscles in your face to make her happy... she just suffers. You have todo something about her, you have to:
[-] Accept exile from nothingness and stand up.
[-] Reject somethingness; lay back down and close your eyes.
[-] Write in.
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[x] Accept exile from nothingness and stand up.
No loafing around.

I'm not sure where it's going. Though it's probably intentionally hectic, you might want to break up things into paragraphs going forward for better readability.
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[x] Accept exile from nothingness and stand up.
kusoquesto ajjaajajajajja
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File 169415905872.png - (214.98KB, 1500x1500, stand up.png)
stand up
The world seems to slow immensely as you force your body upright. You would've thought you'd be rewarded for your efforts but all you got was back pain. The stinging in your brain also persists.

Your eyes look into the river and you try not to pay any mind to your own reflection for a moment. The water is calm but you can still tell the direction it's flowing in- downstream in this case is west. A good sentiment you learned from somewhere in your past is that they're always people near the sea. If you follow the river and don't trip in or something along those lines you may find, literally anyone.

You could also turn around and enter into the forest behind you as looking into this river for so long has made you painfully aware of how hungry and dehydrated you are. Sure eating random berries in the woods is a gamble- hell you might be eaten but there are surely more resources to be found in there.

You could always just lie down again too, if it's just too overwhelming for you.

[-] Head downstream.
[-] Head into the woods.
[-] Lay back down.
[-] Write in.
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[x] Head downstream.
Finding people is good.
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[x] Head downstream.
river = people (usually)
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File 169416841760.png - (355.53KB, 1500x1500, traveling.png)
traveling
You set your eyes on the river in the words of the wise... person: River equals people (usually). You raise your foot, maybe an inch or two off the ground, and make a step westwards. That's not... right. You try to blow back the layers of fog shrouding your mind and desperately try to understand why walking just doesn't feel correct. You focus in on yourself- the yourself before yourself- and it hits you. A groan leaves your mouth as you exert the missing piece of energy required to move your falling body. You look down and nothing, visually, has changed. However, you can no longer feel the earth beneath your feet as you start to hover forward.

There's the smell damp in the air, of course, combined with your smell of alcohol. You travelled undisturbed for a good ten minutes, if you had to guess, your perception of time is understandably fucked.

You glance into the river... You notice two completely empty, differently branded bottles of sake, lightly floating on the water surface. This observation is perfectly accompanied by series of loud yells coming from the forest. It causes your head to sting, forcing you to stop momentarily as you grab your head.

If you had to guess those bottles are yours but if you're really a gambling girl you'd assume that sound is being made by a person. No telling if they'll be friend or foe but there's also no telling if these bottles are related to you. I mean, who doesn't like a good drink.

[-] Follow/inspect the bottles
[-] Go towards the yelling
[-] Lay down. Return to nothingness.
[-] Write in
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[x] Go towards the yelling
its time to brace ourselves for FUN, for when someone is yelling in the woods, only FUN is ahead
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File 169417854211.png - (399.52KB, 1500x1500, CROSSFIRE.png)
CROSSFIRE
You turn from your trusty companion, the river, and begin to float into the forest at your fastest pace? Which isn't very fast at all and the constant screaming stuns you in place for a few seconds everytime the vibrations travel into your eardrums. Despite that, you press forward and it grows easy to follow the voices- pural. One was just screaming significantly louder than other which is probably a bad sign for them. The cycle of moving, waiting scream, hearing a scream and following continues for a short eternity. Your mind is on the verge of combustion.

Just as before the screaming stops for a period; you meekly lift your hands off your ears and try to move back into a upright posture before you are forcefully moved into a hunch again. You hear a strong gust of air behind you along with the leaves and twigs that followed behind it's source like a trail. You turn. Only for a similar sound to come from where you were just look. This high pitched sound continues around you. You try to keep up- move your head to follow but a pool of acid starts to bubble inside your stomach.

The crack of a branch exploding erupts from behind you and your body moves with the swiftness of the girl you are no longer.

A glowing orb of sorts whizzes by you but your body doesn't even give you the chance to process it. Your body jitters violently as you projectile vomit, thankfully nothing got on your clothes but It's pretty clear that you're "danger close" with some kind of battle. Your body jumps at the first idea of what todo at this very moment.
[-] Write in
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[x] Rush in
It's like Fools Rush In, but without the fools part
Also, is that four updates in half a day? That's amazing, but please wait up for voters sometimes!
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[x] CHARGE IN to demand due recompense and enact revenge for nearly soiling your clothes.
It was clearly the orb's fault.

>>204580
Old-school quest threads be like this.
Kinda fun to see one nowadays.
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>>204581
I loved old school quests so it's great to see this thread here
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[x] Find some water and drink it
Dehydration is dangerous; vomiting dehydrates you a lot; battle can wait.
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File 169420108889.png - (287.99KB, 1500x1500, Master!!!!.png)
Master!!!!
As the last of the bile leaves your throat, you reel upwards. The acidic taste lingers on your tongue, making your whole mouth feel oddly numb. A low buzzing sound bounces around your skull. The green and brown surroundings behind to merge into one blood, smudging as your eyes lose focus. Submerged in sweat, you turn around and charge- if you can call it that.

You move forward. You don't know how fast. You don't even know if you're moving or if your mind is playing a trick on you.

A yell assaults your ears. It's one of the voices you were following. A woman's voice- too loud... Too clear.

"MASTER!!! SPARK!!!"

In a instant a beam flies in front of you. Its.... Its.... It's beautiful. Time slows down as each particle of light caresses your synapses. Your mind clears up and your eyes focus in snatching every detail. When you look at this you feel nothing. Suffering ceases- reality ceases.

This is nothingness in somethingness.

However, the light starts to fade, and your body begins to return to its broken state. So warm to freezing cold. It's shutting down? Was it ever on?

"Ha...ha..hehehe...haa." is all your throat musters as you start to fall. You only have enough energy to decide.

[-] To fall foward into nothingness face first. Might as well save what I have for where I'm going.
[-] To fall forward into nothingness, protecting your face. The girl who was here before was making an effort might as well respect it.
[-] To fall sideways into nothingness. If you're dead will you need energy anyways? Might as well use up the tank having the """best""" fall possible.
[-] Fall backwards into nothingness. Maybe I can see another Master Spark before I go.... That would be nice.
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[-] Fall backwards into nothingness. Maybe I can see another Master Spark before I go.... That would be nice.

It's good to enjoy the finer things in life before the inevitable end.
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[x] Fall backwards into nothingness. Maybe I can see another Master Spark before I go.... That would be nice.
I drift tonight the finite one
and the infinite one
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File 169421537525.png - (118.37KB, 1500x1500, 1st_epiphany-1.png)
1st_epiphany-1
Again, the girl ventures the finite world as another girl entirely, banished from the realm of nothing but fearing the realm of something. The cycle of escape.

"Has this girl- me- bound myself to this cycle, or does it bind us? That can only be answered through epiphanies from our past."

E P I P H A N Y U N L O C K E D
:
The Yin-Yin means only in nothingness can one find BEAUTY
-

Your body falls backwards as everything around you fades into a dark, but you don't make the full journey into the end. A force at the front of your being - your shirt - keeps you from making the crash. You can't make out a face or figure only a faint hum. Your eyes close, but you've been banished from bliss, and you know it's only a moment before...

They open. Small specks of light poke, though small gaps made in the bundles dark green leaves above you. A cold familiar liquid moves across your tongue - you can taste the life contained within it. You feel the grass lightly brush against your arms, following the breeze's rhythm. The strong smell of ethanol as subsided, though not completely gone. Your eyes adjust as a black cone enters your vision? No, it's a black hat. A mass of gold peaks out from under it, and under that is a face. You can't make out features yet, but you don't need to be able to see those to know that she's... slapping you? In the face - not hard, but still it's done its job of bringing you back to the world of finite. It can end now.

[-] Move your head and try to avoid the assault.
[-] Use your words or try to at least.
[-] Write In.

(Congrats, you've unlocked your first epiphany. These will provide additional choice options and extra dialogue from specific characters. It will also mould your thoughts as you become or deny the girl you once were.)
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[X] Use your words or try to at least.
-[X] Turn head to avoid puking in her face.

We must attempt communication with the hitherto unknown magician-shaped bestower of liquid life.
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[X] Use your words or try to at least.
- [X] Don't turn your head, though.

If we do end up puking in her face, that's just fair retaliation.
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[X] Use your words or try to at least.
-[X] Turn head to avoid puking in her face.
let's not be Puker the Infinite and calmly lose our lunch somewhere that's NOT on the girl
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[X] Use your words or try to at least.
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The slapping storm continues until the muscles in your face and mouth finally decide to follow your commands. At first, all you can muster is a soft groan, but as you force your body to comply with your will, your mouth produces words.

"Owww... StoOoOp." The voice kinda shocks you- the resting bitch face deceived you into believing you'd have a deep-ish voice carrying the weight of your self destructive actions, however you sound way more... smug. Your voice's pitch is on the higher side and has this natural fluctuation like you spent your past days teasing innocents. In some other context it could honestly seem like you were enjoying this but just being coy. The rest, however long it was and the liquid have eased the cauldron of acid inside of though you still turn your head to the left just for good measure and this all culminates in the woman stopping.

"Oh-! there we go! C'mon, get up!" The voice of your saviour fills your ears as you are finally able to see her smooth skin, white teeth, and yellow eyes. The white of the sun above wraps around her body and clothes, giving her an aura of sorts. The black accented with white frills reminds you of that glorious place you once resided in... maybe she the embodiment of that bliss. Until, your brain decided she was being a little too loud. Sharp sensations fly around inside your brain.

"Too... loud."

"What!?"

"You're being too loud-! Gah! My head..." Your words trail off into a pathetic whine as you writhe on the floor.

"Hey, you're the only one using your outdoor voice here. Now stop moving so much your gonna make things a lot worse." She leans down towards you, the ends of her braid brushing your face, and gently lifts up your head. She holds out a leather sack with a nozzle on it and hold it up to your mouth. You don't contest and open up, allowing yourself to be blessed by that amazing liquid. Your tongue is baptised in ice cold water. The woman lays your head back down into the grass and looks at you with a smile.

"There, feeling any better now?"

"Well, I don't like death, so that's something."

"Whew - yeah, you looked like you about to crash land into the realm of the dead and, trust me, you don't wanna go there. The guard is a total brat."

"How would you... know- nevermind... who are you, anyways?"

"Name's Marisa, Marisa Kirisame. And you are?"

A voice enters you head. It's the one you heard in the nothingness, though being in the somethingness has actually made it decipherable, for lack of a better word, it sounds like you but with the smug turned up to max. Every word sounds like its about to morph into a chuckle.

"Wow you really didn't think that one through, did you genius? C'mon, what's our name- first and last- I wanna hear you say it and fully seal the mess you are into the futile."

[-] To fully be futile one must put their existence into a phrase that with a tick of a clock's hand can be gone forever. A name and "My name is ______"
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空虚むいみ

Kuukyo Muimi, or Muimi Kuukyo in western name order.

Kuukyo means emptiness or void.

Muimi (in kanji) means meaningless.

If we were nothing we might as well be nothing.

Bonus points because in japanese she can introduce herself with "Muimi yo" which sounds like "It's meaningless/pointless."
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>>204593
this is better than a d*sco elysium reference
thus I vote this
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File 169425419763.png - (302.82KB, 1500x1500, Becoming a person.png)
Becoming a person
You've lost. The one chain keeping you from being undeniably locked in the land of the futile and you let this Marisa person casually put it on you.

Again, the girl ventures the finite world as another girl entirely, banished from the realm of nothing but fearing the realm of something. The cycle of escape.

"Has this girl- me- bound myself to this cycle, or does it bind us? That can only be answered through epiphanies from our past."


E P I P H A N Y U N L O C K E D
:
My name is Muimi Kuukyo.
-

[Yin-Yin Meaning]
"It's pointless."

Marisa blinks at you almost as if she needs extra time to process your response before shaking her head- response ready.

"What? It's not pointless, it's your name. Your name is like your signature on reality. You're doing your name a disservice - plus I gave you mine."

"It's Muimi Kuukyo."

"Muimi Kuukyo.... Oh, Oh- I get it now! That's kinda funny... in a sad way."

"There's something nice in even the saddest things, I guess."
[Yin-Yin Meaning]

You slowly bring yourself up into a sitting position with a little assistance from Marisa. She hands you her waterskin so you can take sips from it whenever you want, but it's not long before she asks you something else.

"So not to bring back bad memories so fast, but what the hell happened?"

"I woke up in the middle of nowhere with the worst hangover ever. I heard your... whatever that was and came over. Then, you know the rest."

"Hmmm... Well, do you live near here? I can take a quick detour to make sure you get back safe."

"I have... no idea where I live... I couldn't even remember my own name till you brought it up."

"Yeesh! How much do you gotta drink to forget where you live- you got a problem, lady"

[Yin-Yin Meaning]

"As much as I did."

[Yin-Yin Meaning]

"I guess so." Marisa does a quick stretching before rubbing her chin, pondering something. "Well, my house isn't too far from here and I'm sure doll-head wouldn't mind looking after you for a bit but I am heading to the Hakurei Shrine. Kind of a journey but Reimu's the more caring type or at least she's supposed to be."

[-] Rise to your feet. "If you don't mind can we go to your house. I just need somewhere to sleep that isn't outside."
[-] Rise to your feet. "I wouldn't want to divert your journey anymore than I already have. Plus, shrines are where fuck ups like me are supposed to go anyways.
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[x] Rise to your feet. "I wouldn't want to divert your journey anymore than I already have. Plus, shrines are where fuck ups like me are supposed to go anyways."
sculptor's idol FOUND
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[X] Rise to your feet. "I wouldn't want to divert your journey anymore than I already have. Plus, shrines are where fuck ups like me are supposed to go anyways.
-[X] "Could I perhaps head back with you when you've concluded your business at the shrine?"

Our time is meaningless, might as well not take up too much of others'.

I want to go with Relentless Optimism Marisa route for Muimi but only if our benevolent granter of water herself doesn't mind the extra trash in her house.

Besides, we're supposed to go.

Sorry, Alice; no doll-like playmate for you today.
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[X] Rise to your feet. "I wouldn't want to divert your journey anymore than I already have. Plus, shrines are where fuck ups like me are supposed to go anyways.
-[X] "Could I perhaps head back with you when you've concluded your business at the shrine?"
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File 169427988036.png - (349.31KB, 1500x1500, Broom_ride.png)
Broom_ride
Marisa gives you a slight chuckle. "Oh it's nothing I wouldn't mind either but you are right about that fuck up part. There's probably more stuff there that can help you with the whole hangover thing too." Marisa finishes her sentence then raises her arm above her head. The gesture confuses you enough to halt your response; when you finally just assume she's being a weirdo you open your mouth to talk and broom zooms in- past your peripherals into your direct line of sight- into Marisa's palm.

"Oh- It actually worked this time! Sweet. Are you okay to fly or do you wanna hop on with me. This broom is big enough for the both of us." She makes a weird accent, sitting on top of the now-floating broom.

You were going to deny Marisa's offer to ride on her broom but then you actually think about trying to manage flying at the same pace as her with in this state and silently hop on.

Yin-Yin Meaning
You wrap your arms around Marisa.
Yin-Yin Meaning

The broom starts the move at a steady pace as the two of you weave past the branches and leaves. However, when you reach above the treeline, Marisa turns to you.

"You might want to hold on tighter~"

"Wha-!?" The broom drastically accelerates if it wasn't for Marisa warning you probably would’ve fell off. Your moving so fast your eyes can make out what's in front of you; the stinging in your head flares up but your body has locked itself so that you don't try to grab your head and go flying.

"Should be a good ten minutes from here!"

" TEN MINUTES!?!?!

You have no choice but to endure this torment for its entirety. By the time you actually reach your destination you've completely disassociated and Marisa had to restort to slapping your face again.

You snap back to and take in where you now are. The broom hovers over a cobblestone path that leads to a small brown building with a black tiled roof. It's about as modest as you'd expect from a shrine. You tilt foward and fall off the broom, stopping yourself in the air before you make contact with the ground.

"So you can fly?"

Yin-Yin Meaning
"Never said I couldn't- wasn't going to pass up a free ride though."
Yin-Yin Meaning

"That's fair- Oh, also if you can't remember where you live by nightfall I'm sure Reimu will let you stay over."

"Could I perhaps head back with you when you've concluded your business at the shrine?"

"Hmmmm....." She looks off into the sky. Then her head snaps back to you. "Sure I don't see why not but I do have a to go visit a mansion after we're done here. I have... reparations to collect. Oh and we need to pick up more opium... actually I think have enough to last this week."

"Waitwaitwait, did you say opium?"

"Yep!"

"Like opium , opium?"

"Yeppers!"

"Like fight-wars-over opium."

"That's the one!"

"Are you two really talking about opium on sacred ground?" A voice comes from behind you. You and Marisa both turn in unison and spot the source of the voice. A short, black haired woman, adorned in red and white garments.

"Ah- sorry Reimu."

"Jeez... and where have you been? You said you were going to bring breakfast over like two hours ago- I'm starving."

"I got a little sidetracked fighting a yokai and then helping out her." Marisa points to you; Reimu and you make eye contact for the first time as she looks over to you.

"Well I guess that's a good enough reason. Where are my manners? Hello, I'm Reimu Hakurei and I am the maiden of the Hakurei Shrine."

Quick, it's time to make introduction like those in the futile do.

[-] "Name's Muimi Kuukyo."
[-] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo and I'm the drunkard your friend saved."
[-] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo. Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."
[-] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo." Do a curtesy "Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."

Bonus Options (these can be use along with other options or as standalone option)

Yin-Yin Meaning:


[-] Make the pointless joke.
[-] Offer a your hand to Reimu, if she takes it, kiss it.
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[X] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo. Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."
-[X] Offer a your hand to Reimu, if she takes it, kiss it.
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[X] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo. Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."
-[X] Make the pointless joke.

The curtsy and the kiss are too much for Ms. Dark 'n Gloomy.

But we absolutely use the joke. Every. Time.
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[X] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo and I'm the drunkard your friend saved."
- [X] Make the pointless joke.

The joke is definitely standard opening procedure.
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[X] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo." Do a curtesy "Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."
-[X] Offer a your hand to Reimu, if she takes it, kiss it.
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[X] "I'm Muimi Kuukyo. Sorry about the inappropriate conversation."
-[X] Make the pointless joke.

She's too depressed to kiss people.
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(Okay so first time we didnt have a completely unanimous decision so I took a "everybody wins" stance for this time. From this point onwards majority at the point I start writing/drawing will cuck the other votes. Also, no drawing for this one because it's too late, and I'm too tired but might as well substitute it with an OOC question. With a spread of drawings we have already, some being very good and others being comically bad, which is your favourite so far?)

"I shouldn't tell you my name- it's pointless." The muscles in Reimu's face shift the position of her left eyebrow upwards and for the right vice versa. As she starts to make a frown similar to your... normal face.

"It's Muimi, Muimi Kuukyo." Then in a moment the frown was gone, unlike you this girl wasn't bound to her peeved expression. Reimu gives you a smile as she responds.

" It's meaningless to make jokes like that, you could've just said: I'm Muimi." Your mind knows that it should grace this wordplay with a smile, at the very least , but your face's expression is locked in place and doesn't flow from emotion to emotion like Reimu's does. So you have to get creative in expressing your appreciation of her goodwill.

You tuck in your chin, pressing it against your chest and angling your head so that your nose points southwest. That is alongside a quick rotation of your whole body so that your shoulder faces Reimu, causing you to make a relatively swift movement in a small arc. Just as said arc comes to an end and the momentum forces your hair to flip- you raise your arm with an open palm towards Reimu. Fortunately, she doesn't leave you hanging and places her hand on top of yours. Electrons fly through your nervous system into your brain, making a cold sensation spread across the surface of your palm but you pay it no mind as you mirror the movement you made prior. When you return to your initial position you simply pull the hand towards you and give its dorsal side a quick kiss. You let go; look up and hope that how you feel translated to her as you place a sweet cherry on the top of this sweet gesture.

"Sorry for the inappropriate conversation."

"Oh, that's fine. It's not the worst thing I've heard her talking about."

"Hey, where was Miss Formalities when we were in the forest? All I got was groaning and yelling."

Yin-Yin Meaning

You raise your arm up to Marisa- open palm ready for her hand but she just looks away with a pout.

"No- the moment's gone now."

Yin-Yin Meaning


"Don't feel too bad you probably shouldn't touch her hands anyways you might catch something."

"Yeah my winnerpox." Reimu rolls her eyes- smile still on her face and begins to walk into the shrine. You and Marisa follow behind her.

"Anyways you doing okay, Marisa and more importantly did you bring breakfast... brunch with you?"

"Of course, Alice made a little extra so that we'd have leftovers but it should be the perfect amount for three."

"Think it can stretch and feed four?"

"Four?"

"Yeah, Remilia decided to pay me a visit."

"Remilia?" Marisa looks up into the sky. A beam of sunlight landing on her cheek. "Ain't it a little bit... risky for her to be out here at this hour?"

"Eh, it's her risk to take."

Wow. You really feel like the third wheel here. It might be nice to pick up a little bit of context before you're forced to meet another person they know but you don't.

[-] "Sounds like you two go way back."
[-] "Remilia? Who's that and why would it be risky for her to be here?"
[-] "Alice? You have like a personal servant or something, Marisa?

Bonus Options

Yin-Yin Meaning


[-] "So are you two like... dating?"
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[-] "Sounds like you two go way back."

It'd be rude not to focus on our host and just start gossiping about her guests just out of earshot of said guests.

Are we even about gossip?
Nah, that's just a waste of time.
Same with the dating thing.
Doesn't really matter if they are, either way.

Also it's the perfect option to add in some nihilistic cynicism because they have something (friendship), where we had; were; have; and are nothing.

As for the images, don't sell yourself short.
They're all great but if I had to pick some standouts...

I really like the OP's mugshot; it immediately sets the tone and gives me and idea of what to expect from Muimi as a person.
Even if she may or may not have been a full person at the time.
Or if she even is one now.
I dunno, I just feel like it was the perfect image to start the thread.

I also like the action shot where she dodged the green orb.
The composition is cool and the pose is dynamic.

The posing and symbolism of "becoming a person" is also pretty great.

Also big shoutouts in general to your facial expressions, I just love Muimi's general "doneness" with most situations.
For examples just look at the names already mentioned, but "Master!!!!" also has a really good one.
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(Was very busy and very hot but we're finally back! Drawings will return next post 100% but just wanted to get this our ASAP as its been a hot minute.)

You make the titular statement:

"Sounds like you two go way back."

Like a spring, Marisa bounces to Reimu's side, wrapping her arm around Reimu's shoulders with a wide grin. Reimu aids the gesture of comradeship by tilting her head slightly so that her hair nestles against Marisa's, giving a not-so-toothy smile as well.

"Yep! Me and Reimu have been together for like the past... forever! I really can't remember a time before we started hanging out."

"Yeah, no one else can tolerate her, so she stays around a lot. She's pretty much my roommate with how often she's here."

"Hey! I'll have you know that everybody who we interact with loves me."

"Well, that's news to me. I must've missed that article in the paper this morning."

"C'mon, name one person who doesn't like yours truly. Except maybe Patchouli" Reimu dramatically clears her throat; mimics put on glasses and holding out a scroll.

"Ruima, Cirno, that one fairy with the green hair I can't remember the name of, Meiling-"

"Okay, you can stop now."

"Sakuya, Remilia, Alice, Yukari."

"Grrrr."

"I could keep going."

"I think that's more than enough."

"Oh, and you're wrong about Patchouli. She doesn't dislike you. She hates you."

"You see, this is why you have no clientèle."

"I don't need more clientèle you give me ten people's worth of stress... but" Both of them look at each other and speak in unison.

"I do need more of their money." The girls laugh a little bit at their inside joke, and it hits you.

You don't even need to hear the high-pitched tormentor in your brain to say it, but you really didn't think that one through. Time slows into near non-existence as they laugh, and you watch completely out of the loop. No, just out of the loop of their joke. Out of the loop in the futile world because seemingly no one wanted to keep you in. What type of person goes out on such a destructive binge that it almost completely wipes away her memories. Surely, that type of person isn't one that is wanted, loved, or anything of the sort. Is there someone out there looking for you - the Reimu to your Marisa? If there ever was, you were either a fool to push them away or a fool to give them up. Though the option that they were taken away from you is also an option but not one that makes you much happier. You speak a language you don't remember being taught with a body you don't remember loved. You are as close to nothingness as somethingness will allow and when you realise this for the first time since you woke up. You think understand why the girl before you did this. It must be so much worse to be brought to nothing from something worse than you can comprehend right now because you've never been there. The only justifiable escape from this torment is the situation you're in now.

If every bundle of DNA in every cell in your body was plucked out and tied at the ends of each other into one long string that stretched out from this atmosphere, solar system, galaxy and ultimately the universe. It would not be to represent a single percent of how lonely you feel right now. How bad you wish you were one of those girls right now.

The laughing stops and the girls end their embrace, leading you into the shrine though the Kotatsu where you'd expect this fourth guest to be is empty. Half-drunk cup and teapot left on the table surface. Reimu gives a hmmm before speaking up.

"That's strange- Eh, I'm sure she couldn't have gone far, her parasol is still in the corner. Anyways, Muimi, please make yourself comfortable. I'll fetch you a cup. If you don't like darjeeling I can just get you some water."

[-] You don't know what Darjeeling tastes like or at least you don't remember but experimenting is how people become people. Sit down at the Kotatsu and agree to drink some tea.
[-] Might as well play it safe for all we know this Darjeeling could make our headache worse. Bring back bad memories or even worse get the voice in your head to start talking. Sit down at the Kotatsu and ask for some water.
[-] If you put too much in your body that cauldron of acid in you might act up again. Though it should have a lot of free space available anything can happen, I mean just look at today.
[-] Though it is the host's job to be hospitable, you really don't want to be a burden. Reimu's here with her friends and you should let her spend the most time possible enjoying that. Insist to fetch the cup yourself and then come back.
[-] Though it is the host's job to be hospitable, you really don't want to be a burden. Reimu's here with her friends and you should let her spend the most time possible enjoying that. Plus this might be the only way you can interact with this Remilia person without feeling that immense loneliness again. Insist to fetch the cup yourself and once you do, look for Remilia.
[-] Might as well make yourself useful if you're going to be here for this gathering. Offer to go and look for Remilia while Reimu brings a cup out for you.
[-] Write in

Bonus Options

Yin-Yin Meaning


[-] Complement the interior of this shrine. Reimu seems to have a nice sense of decorum.
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Muimi would probably want to minimise her burden on others at all times.
But I also think she doesn't have the strength of personality to insist on anything, even for something like this. At least for now.
Probably just sit down, shut up, talk when spoken to, and feel miserable about people having friends.

Drink should be water.
If we know what teapot is, we can infer that this strange Darjeeling substance is likely a sort of tea.
Let's not go for (probably) flavoured drinks and stick to the basics. Small sips, too.
We could mention we don't even know what Darjeeling is, but that'd probably make us look like a weirdo. Yikes.

For seating we should ask to sit closest to the door, so we can run outside in case we do agitate our stomach again.
It's easier to clean stone tiles than tatami floors.

Probably do go with the compliment before she leaves to get the cup.
Muimi would probably like the "austere" look.
Perfect way for her to have egg on her face when it's likely just because Reimu is poor.

[X] Might as well play it safe for all we know this Darjeeling could make our headache worse. Bring back bad memories or even worse get the voice in your head to start talking. Sit down at the Kotatsu and ask for some water.
-[X] Complement the interior of this shrine. Reimu seems to have a nice sense of decorum.
-[X] Ask to sit closest to the door outside. You never know when you might need to make a quick exit.

Time to drop the spaghetti and go down the despair spiral.
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[X] Might as well play it safe for all we know this Darjeeling could make our headache worse. Bring back bad memories or even worse get the voice in your head to start talking. Sit down at the Kotatsu and ask for some water.
-[X] Complement the interior of this shrine. Reimu seems to have a nice sense of decorum.

Agree with above anon. Muimi doesn't seem to be one for being a burden.
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>>204609 here.

Just making a small addendum to the seating thing because I realised the reason why wasn't immediately clear from the wording.
Apologies for that.

-[X] Ask to sit closest to the door outside. You never know when you might need to make a quick exit (to go vomit).
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[X] Might as well play it safe for all we know this Darjeeling could make our headache worse. Bring back bad memories or even worse get the voice in your head to start talking. Sit down at the Kotatsu and ask for some water.
-[X] Complement the interior of this shrine. Reimu seems to have a nice sense of decorum.
-[X] Ask to sit closest to the door outside. You never know when you might need to make a quick exit.
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EOSD
"Some water would be lovely, if you don't mind. Love what you've done with the place, nailed the minimalist aesthetic. "

"Oh, thank you. I wish I could say it was a deliberate choice but I appreciate it. I'll be just a minute, okay." Reimu gives a smile; turns and walks into an adjacent room. Marisa practically throws herself under the Kotatsu, letting all the tension in her body fade as she stretches her legs underneath the blanket. You are less graceful to put it nicely. You choose a spot closest to the door in case of emergencies and begin the herculean task of trying to sit down. You move like a gear that hasn’t been lubricated in years and as you try to carefully make the transition from standing in a weird crouching position to sitting you just *fail and fall onto your butt. However, this ends up hurting your head more as the sudden movement causes the ever-present stinging sensation in your brain to flare up to max for a good five seconds or so. In a mixture of pain and embarrassment you lift up the Kotatsu blanket; a gold and orange light peaks out from under it then, slowly, you scoot yourself under.

Holy shit- it's warm under here.

[Yin-Yin Meaning]

You're about to ask if this surge of heat under this sheet is intentional but stop yourself, realising that if something was wrong Marisa would’ve made some reaction by now so you assume that it's intentional. It's not like it's boiling under there anyways.

[Yin-Yin Meaning]

You have to actively put thought into easing your very tense body. You actually manage to do it. The warm air wraps around your calves and thighs but your skirt acts as a source of shade leaving your legs at the perfect temperature.

"Man, I could stay here forever~"

"Same~ maybe I should spend the night here after all."

"What~? Little Kotatsu is all it takes to win you over, huh Muimi?" Marisa start taking out containers from a bag she was carrying, Containing cookies, cakes and other treats.

"Anything that'll get my mind off this headache..." You gesture to a cookie. "you mind?"

"Course not, take as many as you like." Marisa on that note picks up a cake herself as you grab the aforementioned cookie. You take a bite and your mind is reminded of a sugary goodness it forgot. You didn't notice until three or four chews in but your body just naturally went for the cookie, guess that was the previous girls favorite, at least out of the options present. You start to think about her for a moment as you look down at the cookie and then your hand with perfectly cut, filed and painted nails. Seriously, who was this girl? Willing to drink herself to near death but heaven forbid she had a chipped nail. You cut your pondering short as you go in for another bite but the sound of Reimu stepping back into the room halts the motion.

"Girls, get out here, we have a problem." You and Marisa turn to Reimu, then back at each other. Marisa starts to scramble out from under the Kotatsu.

[Yin-Yin Meaning]

You toss the cookie into your mouth, in a display of unexpected dexterity and begin to do the same as Marisa.

[Yin-Yin Meaning

The process of going from sitting to standing is a process that is about five times harder than the opposite and yet here you are trying to do it five times faster than you did its counterpart. Your head is killing you but you grit your teeth and follow behind the others as Reimu leads outside to the back of the shrine.

Oh that's not a problem, That's a full blown catastrophe!

Your eyes look forward about fifteen feet in front of you and spot a tamely brutal display. Floating in the middle of the sunlight is a contraption consisting of two wooden crosses and two black obelisks with gold markings sprawled all over its faces. The two parts conjoin together by piercing through the sleeves of a light pink dress with a hat adorned with frills laying in ths grass below it. However, all of this would frankly have no meaning to you if it wasn’t for one thing. The crosses and the obelisks have the Yin-Yin symbol painted on them. Big and bold. It is undeniable that the symbol on these execution tools is the same symbol you have pinned to your waist and pierced to your ears.

Marisa's mouth drops to the floor and in your peripherals you can see Reimu turn to you. The pain in your head reaches a new peak as your heart beats so heavily it starts pulverising your lungs and cracking your ribcage.

"R-Reimu.... That can't be... Who I think it is.... R-right?" Marisa says with a laugh, despite her wide eyes with shrunken pupils."

"Someone's killed Remilia." Even nature shuts up at that statement. Everything stops.

You feel her hand press down on the puffy fabric at your shoulder and onto your skin. You can start to feel water rise just underneath the pores of your skin, waiting to burst out. You turn your head and meet her gaze. The look she gives you impales your soul."

"I-I-I-I swear I have nothing to do with this-! Swear to everything!" She just looks down at your skirt; then to your face again and moves the bang covering up your ear revealing the other piercing. Your throat shrivels. Here you stand at the Execution of Scarlet Devil with her assailants memorabilia all over you.

Reimu holds that lock of hair as she looks at that piercing for what feel like an eternity and for every moment of that eternity, your head gets closer to what feels like combustion. Then she moves her hand and lets your hair fall back into place. Your body jitters, and you fall over yourself.

"Grab her." Reimu's orders are clear, and Marisa gives no questioning, quickly pushing you onto your back; pressing her knee onto you and restraining both of your arms.

[-] "I-I REALLY DON'T KNOW ANYTHING I SWEAR! AH-! MY HEAD!"
[-] "WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING TO ME?!?!"
[-] "PLEASE-! I DON'T KNOW, I DON'T KNOW! I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE MY HOUSE IS!"
[-] Write in.

Bonus Options

Yin-Yin Meaning


[-] Start ugly sobbing.


(Anons welcome to the true beginning of DDiTB)
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What else is there to do but bawl like a baby?

If we were capable of forming a sensible argument, it'd be easy to point out that we literally just got here.
We haven't left Marisa's side and Reimu saw Remilia just before we arrived because she was surprised that she was "suddenly" gone.
So, instead it'll just come out as blubbering.

[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!" (Blubbering and stammering)
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-[X] "B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!" (Blubbering and stammering)

[-] Start ugly sobbing

Hoo boy, poor Miumi, why ya gotta do her like that radiant. But yeah her situation us kinda fucked, unless we do like >>204615 says, that we just arrived here, were screwed.

Oh and nothing of too much value was lost, just one vampire loli, though the maid wont be too happy with that.

Although if you think about it, Remilia dying has some interesting(terrifying) complications to Gensokyo as a whole, since Remilia is actually one of the strongest beings in the land, and even with the spellcard rules in place, she still died without any form of battle around her. Which could be very threatning for the stability of fantasy land.

Also, whats that Yin-Yin Meaning you keep putting ?
Are those from the ephiphanies we keep getting?
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>>204615 here.

No changes or addendums this time, just some extra things I've noticed as I've stewed on it a bit.

Two of the default choices have some interesting wording.

The first one seems to trigger the headache again, it could lead to some revelation as "choosing" to go "oof ow my head" sounds extremely disingenuous; thus, maybe something would happen.

The middle option mentions "keep happening".
Unless this is just meant to refer to bad shit in general happening to Muimi, it almost sounds like she's talking about something this bad happening to her.
Some part of her old memory speaking, perhaps?

Again these are just personal interpretations from overly reading into things, it's entirely possible I'm overthinking it all.
As I mentioned my choices stand, it's in my opinion the most likely thing the Muimi of this moment would be like; while still (attempting) to get out the important point.

>>204618
OP could probably explain this better, but from what I understand:
We've had the epiphany, and now it's a part of Muimi.
That epiphany is now influencing her in ways she acts (cut-ins during the post), and options or alternative ways of thinking that'd fit that aspect of her personality (bonus options).
That obviously doesn't mean she has to adhere to the bonus options rigorously or anything, that's what voting is for.
Somebody mentioned Disco Elysium earlier in the thread and while I'm not entirely familiar with the game itself, I can see the similarities in how they build and present their "dialogue options" as it were.

Unless I missed something we've only had the two epiphanies:

- We provided her with a name. Whether or not it was the as it used to be, the girl we're playing is now Muimi Kuukyo.

- The Yin-Yin epiphany. What this means for her is a lot more ambiguous and open to interpretation.
She's adorned with Yin-yin symbols, so it could be parts of her past personality and abilities, as expressed in the unexpected bout of dexterity mentioned in the newest post.
It could also be her current "doomer introvert" mindset, as the yin part of yin-yang symbolises things like negativeness, passiveness, the dark parts of things.
Now, I am absolutely not an authority on Chinese philosophy so I probably grossly oversimplified it, but I hope that made some sense.
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To expand more on the Epiphany system (especially Yin-Yin Meaning which probabaly is the most complex one you will unlock). Firstly, when you see something like:

Yin-Yin Meaning
blah blah blah
Yin-Yin meaning

It means that it's bonus content that you got due to your epiphanies.

Now the Yin-Yin meaning is centered around Muimi's connection to the girl. Think of the girl as a part of Muimi's subconsious. The Yin-Yin meaning is the philosophy that the girl at least vaguely lived by and by proxy it becomes the skeleton of Muimi's subconsious. When it flares up mid post its supposed to be something Muimi does subconsiously but doesn't really get why since she's basically an adult baby she's pretty hyper aware of her own actions. It's when she has a "Who is this girl" moment. When it comes up as a bonus action it like her just feeling an urge to do something, stopping herself and going "do I really want to do that?" and the urges she chooses to indulge in will ultimately make her personality including what she does with her default options. A good example one that won't mess up to much telling you about is Muimi's jokes. She does show glimpses of comedic sense mostly when it comes to shitting on herself if she keeps doing it it will eventually just become how she acts "normally" from her perspective. Eventually, later down the line Yin-Yin Meaning won't even show up anymore because Muimi would have developed a sense of self and would no longer be critcal (in this manner) of her own actions.
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[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!" (Blubbering and stammering)

Y'know, technically, we haven't seen a body. Just some clothes. Until we get the official "yeah, that right there is a verified corpse" I'm going to be holding a grain of doubt.

It is totally possible we're responsible though. Maybe if we went and found one of the mind readers of Gensokyo we could clear some memories up? There's like at least 3 to look for.
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[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!" (Blubbering and stammering)
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[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!" (Blubbering and stammering)
some dude called knox says we dindu nothing
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[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING TO ME?!?!"
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[X] Start ugly sobbing.
-[X] "WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING TO ME?!?!"

"Mage 1, was it Trigger?"
"...Trigger was the closest."
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"B-BUT I DIDN'T- I'M NOT A- I JUST GOT HERE!” You writhe around more out of pain than resistance, but Reimu isn’t clued in on your unfortunate circumstances, so it probably comes off very badly. Tears start flowing down your cheeks bursting from your tear ducts like a dam caved in by immense water pressure. You can feel Marisa’s pity for you through her weakening grip.

“I mean... She does have a point there, Reimu. You can’t think that Muimi did this.”

“I don’t. That doesn’t mean I don’t think she’s involved. I think that it is more than reasonable to be suspicious of her.”

“I guess... but what part would she even play- She can barely remember anything.”

“A distraction and what do you mean she can barely remember anything?”

“She’s had memory loss since I found her in the forest, and I think before that too.”

“YEAH- I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHERE I LIVE- OR WHAT DARJEELING TASTE LIKE- NOTHING!”

“Do you seriously believe that? That, coincidentally, on the day an attack is made at my shrine you, coincidentally, bumped into some stranger with memory loss who asked to come here with you. Only for her to then plea that she has no relation to the killing of Remilia and is just conicidentally wearing the logo plastered all over the scene.”

“I.... I do!”

“You can’t be serious! Why!? Why do you believe that?”

“Because if I didn’t coincidentally bump into her in the forest she would have died in the middle of nowhere!” The two stay silent for a moment, letting your wailing fill the air as they stare at each other.

“I still think it’s a front.”

“It’s a pretty crazy to think having your distraction dying in a forest miles away from where you’d want them is a viable plan. If this was all a part of some master scheme, I don’t think we’re going to able to stop whoever did this.” Reimu looks down at you and sighs.

“...Fair.” Marisa fully releases you and both girls help you up off the floor and keep you stabilized until you’re able to fully support yourself once more which due to the blistering head pain is a good minute or two. You drag your forearms across your face, wiping off the streaks of water under your eyes. Stinging eyes have become a part of your collection of ailments.

The three of you are silent. For a long time. You all just look at the suspended remains of Remilia. A tight bundle of grey clouds hangs above you. Marisa slowly lowered herself onto the grass, throwing her hands over her face, breaking the silence.

“How are we going to tell the mansion staff about this or her sister? She’s really just- dead.”

“Well... we can’t show up without at least a single lead on who could’ve done this. This attack only had a five minutes window to be done- max. They couldn't have covered up everything.” Reimu says beginning her approach towards the construct. Marisa doesn’t follow but you do. You float forward, overtaking Reimu and entering examining range of scene.

“Ummm- I didn’t know this Remilia girl but we technically have no concrete proof that she’s dead, right? This is just her clothes.”

“Technically no but Remilia was a vampire. The shade that would’ve came from the shrine couldn’t have reached out this far-”

“And her parasol was still inside. So, she got eviscerated... Hmmmm.” You rub your chin... At least that’s been cleared up.

“You’re oddly eager.”

Yin-Yin Meaning

“Might as well be useful for once instead of wallowing all day.” You reply with a strange conviction that even makes you a little surprised. However, you know that what you said is only half true. There is obviously something else that compels you to do this. One question: Who was the girl you once were and what does she have to do with Remilia’s death?

Yin-Yin Meaning
Reimu takes a step back and makes a gesture for you to keep looking. You know she still doesn’t trust you fully. In fact, she’s probably thinking the exact question you are. Well, it’ll be good for you if she can fill you in on anything you don’t know.

[-] Examine the black obelisks. They're closest things you've got a murder weapon?
[-] Examine the crosses. They ultimately seem like they're more for decoration if anything but in such an efficient attack why have something so useless?
[-] Examine Remilia remains. What's left of her is not much but if there's anything to be gained you'll take it.

Bonus Options

Yin-Yin Meaning


[-] Examine the ground. An attack of this nature needs one aspect, if none else, to be perfect. How do we get and out without being seen, or better yet, How do we get in; get Remilia’s attention and get out without being sceen. Coming in from the sky seems risky... I guess that leaves...The ground?
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>>204620
Good point.

Until we get the "yessir those are vampire ashes" we don't know entirely for sure whether this is really murder or some elaborate setup, but as it is it's looking pretty dang convincing.

But you know who else had means, opportunity, and a propensity to use yin-yang symbolism?

A certain miko who shall not be named.

Bam.
Ace Detective Muimi Kuukyo cannot be fooled!
It's simply pointless to try.
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[x] Examine Remilia remains. What's left of her is not much but if there's anything to be gained you'll take it.
[x] Examine the ground. An attack of this nature needs one aspect, if none else, to be perfect. How do we get and out without being seen, or better yet, How do we get in; get Remilia’s attention and get out without being sceen. Coming in from the sky seems risky... I guess that leaves...The ground?

>>204626
I cringed
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[X] Examine the ground. An attack of this nature needs one aspect, if none else, to be perfect. How do we get and out without being seen, or better yet, How do we get in; get Remilia’s attention and get out without being sceen. Coming in from the sky seems risky... I guess that leaves...The ground?
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>>204626 here.
This is what I get for not refreshing the page before hitting reply.
Sorry about that.

Anyway, the butler (miko) did it jokes aside, let's go over the options.

The obelisks are the most interesting item currently around.
There's clearly something to them if they can stake a vampire and keep her still enough to get destroyed in the sun's glare.

The crosses do just seem part of the bigger contraption, whether it has something to do with the power of crosses vs. vampires or not.
Which I think doesn't even do anything to her in canon.
She even uses said symbolism in her own spellcards.
Not that Muimi'd know, of course.

Examining the remains would more or less help confirm whether or not this is a real murder scene, but it's not like we could differentiate between different kinds of ashes.
We might also find some other clues, because if she was stuck to a cross burning for 5 minutes you'd think she'd be screaming or something.
Maybe we find a gag or some other tool to keep her silent, because I dread to think how powerful one must be to physically knock a vampire unconscious to the point of not reacting to immolation.

The yin-yin insight is... frighteningly accurate.
The assembly itself is the most likely place to be cleaned of evidence, so checking a place that the killer would not have the time to comb over is most likely to provide evidence.
Just because it's logical does not mean this level of insight should not cause extreme alarm in Muimi, though.

Perhaps we are a killer, or we're so used to hunting this guy that we just know how he thinks.
The latter would be preferable, but we got nothing to go on at this time.

So, it comes down to how much time we have to investigate.
Do we have time to check multiple places or is there a hard limit?

I'll order the given options from what I think are most important to least, and we'll see how much gets done.
There are some things I would like to add regardless of how much of the others get done.
I'll add those below.

[X] Examine the ground. An attack of this nature needs one aspect, if none else, to be perfect. How do we get and out without being seen, or better yet, How do we get in; get Remilia’s attention and get out without being sceen. Coming in from the sky seems risky... I guess that leaves...The ground?
-[X] Examine Remilia remains. What's left of her is not much but if there's anything to be gained you'll take it.
--[X] Examine the black obelisks. They're closest things you've got a murder weapon?
---[X] Examine the crosses. They ultimately seem like they're more for decoration if anything but in such an efficient attack why have something so useless?

[X] Feel some serious dread about having such pertinent insight into a MURDER SCENE.
[X] Ask Reimu if she heard anything. Remilia would have to have been completely unconscious or otherwise incapacitated if she wasn't screaming during this.
[X] Be a little suspicious of Reimu. You just met her and this happens? She's also the only one of the people currently here with opportunity, though you wouldn't know her motive or if she had the means to kill somebody this way.

We'll look pretty freaking suspicious by being this competent, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there.
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>>204628 here.
I don't know if we can select multiple options, so I voted for one.
But if we can , I change my vote to:

[X] Examine the ground. An attack of this nature needs one aspect, if none else, to be perfect. How do we get and out without being seen, or better yet, How do we get in; get Remilia’s attention and get out without being sceen. Coming in from the sky seems risky... I guess that leaves...The ground?
-[X] Examine Remilia remains. What's left of her is not much but if there's anything to be gained you'll take it.
--[X] Examine the black obelisks. They're closest things you've got a murder weapon?
---[X] Examine the crosses. They ultimately seem like they're more for decoration if anything but in such an efficient attack why have something so useless?

[X] Stay calm. Freaking out won't solve anything.
[X] Ask Reimu if she heard anything. Remilia would have to have been completely unconscious or otherwise incapacitated if she wasn't screaming during this.
[X] Be a little suspicious of Reimu. You just met her and this happens? She's also the only one of the people currently here with opportunity, though you wouldn't know her motive or if she had the means to kill somebody this way.
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>>204630
It's fair to say that a freakout wouldn't solve anything, but the reason I wrote the dread part in is to really force Muimi to stop and examine why the fuck she would know stuff like this.
OP already makes her do this by default most of the time, but I think it's extra important here so I specified it myself.

By the way, OP, maybe consider getting a tripcode so your thread gets properly listed as a story?
It's been a fantastic thread so far so it'd be great if it was properly recognised.
There's information on how to do so in the site FAQ.
Unless you don't want to, of course. It's your decision.

Now that I think about it, does that even work for a thread already in progress?
I've only ever been an anon.
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You know there's obviously Disco Elysium influence here I think people who have only heard of the game Through this thread can acknowledge that but it was only when I saw THE FACE that I realised. This is literally Disco Elysium like it wasn't intentional and more original ideas will be coming in the near future but oh my god she is literally him, despite 20% of her personality being dictated by you all. Thank you all for reading and play along also let's make this the best CYOA ever ^_^ <3
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>Thank you all for reading and play along also let's make this the best CYOA ever ^_^ <3
part of me wants to direct this to gaia online but both this thread and this op are just too darn precious right now
thank you for running I'm having fun
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[ X ] Examine the ground. I'm not typing out the whole reasoning, but it seems like a good lead.
-[ X ] Examine the remains.
-- [ X ] If there's opportunity to examine the other leads, do so afterwards.

Additionally:
[ X ] Feel a reasonably moderate amount of dread over having such insight, but don't freak out. There's more pertinent issues at the moment.
[ X ] Ask Reimu if she heard anything. Most people don't go quietly if they're able to struggle.
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(Hey! Major delays in getting this one out mostly because of 1 college and 2 a LOT of things going wrong just general. But we're are back and if my reading comprehension is functioning we should be a legit story now.)

You close your eyes, taking a deep breath. This tragedy has made itself the first step towards uncovering your previous identity. In Remilia’s nothingness lies your somethingness or at least you hope it's there. As the last of the air exits your lungs in this small but grand gesture, your mind seems to grasp the severity of the situation and dims down the stinging in your head. Your eyes open. Let's start.

The first thing that came to mind and that's bothering you the most about this so far is how the assailant(s) got in a position to do this in the first place. Flying in from above the treeline seems out of the equation, solely on how much room there is to be spotted. It would also shorten the time available to do the killing to a near impossible amount, having only time in-between when you and Marisa landed and entering the shrine, to do everything is insane. Going below the treeline just makes sense, plus if they did get caught, they'd have the option of trying to escape from a nearby forest. You look down, particularly for any kicked up patches of grass that could at least give a direction they went in or just footprints in general... Nothing. It seems like they put as much brain power into this as they did the real bind here. How did they get Remilia’s attention and no one else's? you have no idea how and this doesn't seem to be helping much.

You, for lack of a better phrase, cut your losses there and begin to focus on Remilia’s remains. You float closer to the dress, lightly flowing in the shallow breeze. Instinctively, your hand moves to free the left sleeve from it binds, but you stop yourself before you touch the obelisk. You shouldn't try to mess with the scene too much till you've gotten a pretty good look at everything first. Also, touching that thing could just make you explode or something. You redirect your hand mid movement to Remilia’s dress, pulling on the collar so that you can get a better look on the inside of the clothes. The entirety of the clothes interior is covered in charcoal-like black. Literally, every inch from this angle is covered. You pull away; lift up the bottom of Remilia’s dress and look inside. Here, there are still signs of burn damage but not as severe once you go past the ribbon, which makes sense as her dress is quite poofy... poofy-? that sounds dumb but it's what you're going with. Reimu steps up on your right to look at the inside of the top side.

"Same story down there?"

"Pretty much- just not as severe." You move away letting the tail of the dress fall and rock side to side for a moment before coming to stop. "Still not irrefutable evidence of evisceration but if this is a misdirection for some kind of kidnapping, taking off her clothes and doing this without causing damage to the exterior- or just in the time frame at all is remarkable. To quote Marisa, "If this was all a part of some master scheme, I don’t think we’re going to able to stop whoever did this.”

"Yeah... If misdirection was the play, it'd be easier to just recreate a damaged dress than to damage her post stripping."

"Which is still on the table, I guess, but I wouldn't bet on it." Reimu nods.

"Still though, unless the second she touched the sun she just- burned into nothing there must have been a scream or something. Are you sure you didn’t hear anything?"

"Nothing at all." You squint at Reimu a bit but you've got more reason to be suspicious of yourself than her. At least your frozen facial expression masquerades your thoughts. Reimu goes on one knee and picks up Remilia’s hat off the floor; turns it over and same story. She sighs and puts it back.

Examine the floor

"Reimu, pick that back up." You see her eyebrow raise, but she does what you ask. You look down at the area covered by the hat and you spot multiple concave imprints in the earth. Ten to be exact. Stemming, from the centre of each one, is a thin crack, some being concealed by long blades of grass. However, what really sells that these aren't natural is that they are perfectly straight. They move towards the shrine and conjoin with each other at perfect right angles or after a smooth curve. You point at one of the indents for Reimu and move your finger along one of the cracks once she notices.

Examine the floor

"It's like the floor has been turned into one of those... those... umm-"

"Jigsaw puzzles."

"Yeah. Hmmm- Marisa!" You raise your head up to yell at her just in time to see a black cloud fly out from her mouth. "You could check- wait, what are you doing?"

"Smoking."

"Smoking!?!? Don't tell me you're doing opium at my shrine! During an investigation!"

"Okay, I won't~" Reimu looks like she's about to have an aneurysm.

"Nevermind that, could you check the wall for me."

"On it!" Marisa lifts herself off the ground and moves over to the wall. You and Reimu watch in silence as her head scans the wall, running her finger across it. "Reimu, I think we're gonna need to rebuild this again." Reimu deflates.

"Could you check on the interior, too? Just to be sure." Marisa nods and wanders inside.

"Safe to say we're dealing with some type of terraforming, Reimu?"

"Yeah but from what we've got there's no way of telling if it's magic, natural ability or a spell card."

"Spell Card?"

"That amnesia is worse than I thought."

Yin-Yin Meaning

"That's cute seeing as you still don't believe me"

Yin-Yin Meaning

"Heh.
You're smarter than I thought, too."

"Listen, I'm at the top of my own suspect list too but if I'm involved, the actual girl who was a part of this is long gone. I know my word isn't worth much but it's all I got."

"You say suspect list like you've got someone else in mind."

"Well yeah, you." Reimu gives you a slight smile.

"Maybe your word is worth something." You can't return a smile of your own because your face simply won't let you but as you look back at Reimu you just tell that she knows you would if you could.

“There are cracks on the inside too!” Marisa's voice pulls both you and Reimu’s head back to the shrine.

“So that’s how they got Remilia outside. Our culprit did something over here. It caused the wall to start cracking, the sound of the wood would’ve been loud enough to be heard from someone inside and when Remilia noticed the wall breaking she likely assumed she wouldn’t have to walk out anywhere near the sunlight and that’s why she left the parasol.”


“Hmmm, Muimi, do you have any ideas on how they knew when to start terraforming? They could’ve easily messed up the timing on what they were doing and alerted me too.”

“Oh- ummm? Simplest option is just… having a lookout…I guess?

“Ok. Another question: how many people do you think were involved in this?”

“Assuming that the terraformer only part in this was terraforming that’d make one. The obelisks could be done by one person as with the crosses. Lookout- and if I actually was supposed to be a distraction then… five, max. At least at this point.”

“There’s a lot of room for messing up in a five man group.”

“I think my mess ups would've covered the whole team..." Reimu sighs and gets back up onto her feet, stretching. “Alright, what are we checking out next?”

“The obelisks are the most pressing thing now as I suppose they are our murder weapons.” You turn to the obelisks and start to look over the faces. There is actually a message written in gold on the Obelisk that you chose to examine first that wraps around onto each face. At first you thought it was gibberish decoration. “The age of escape… brought by the… Hakurei Maiden has made… Man weak. Escapism… From the problem… Of Yokai must cease… We will be the… Somethingness needed.”

Well that sounds pleasant. Never thought I’d be name dropped by extremists.

“Messaging aside, there really doesn’t seem to be anything that special about these things. Though where they chose to impale her from is questionable.”

“How so?”

“Well, who crucifies someone by the shoulders- hell me and her had the same thing going on so this is more arm at this point. It’s always around the wrist even if it's done with a chain."

"I guess they needed her dress suspended more than having accurate symbolism."

"But why? It just doesn't seem necessary. You could achieve the same thing just stabbing her through the heart and then you get vampire slaying symbolism which is more fitting. No use mulling over it, I guess." Your attention moves over to the crosses which somehow seem even less necessary than keeping the dress suspended. You run your finger across the surface of one of the crosses. ".............."

Huh? You're sure that you said something there. Using your mouth is one of the only things you're sure you still can do.

Yin-Yin Meaning

Heh.

Yin-Yin Meaning

Why you thought that as a response is a mystery for another day.
However, the problem is still at hand. You turn to face Reimu and try again with your hand still on the cross. "..............." Her eyebrows shoot up to the top of her forehead. You take your hand off and repeat the sentence for a third time, ultimately unnecessary but it just seems right. "So… What do you think the crosses are for?

"No idea." You and Reimu check the rest of the crosses but ultimately don't make any other epiphanies.

"Well we've given everything a once-over. What's the move now, Muimi?"


[-] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."
[-] "This thing seems pretty stable floating in the air but I'm sure we can get it down if we try."
[-] "Let's try and figure out how they actually managed to impale her."
[-] Write in.
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Wait, so the crosses have like a silence enchantment on them or something?
That'd explain why Reimu never heard anything.
But why didn't they realise this?
Is there some sort of second enchantment to make it seem normal?
Or am I just misreading something here.
If not it's a pretty important clue, but if we, in character, don't even notice it doesn't really matter, I suppose.
I'm not really sure if I should point it out using a write-in, because if it is in fact like I read it, it'd be pure metagaming to point it out.

Maybe Ms. Yin-Yin has more influence that we thought, that she thought it was funny that Muimi thought she was in control of her own voice.
Otherwise it could just be some euphemistic joke, we don't know.

The text on the obelisks seems to imply a group, but the way I read it there can be two opposing interpretations.

One is that the group is human(-aligned) and that the relative peace has made humans weak and easily controlled by youkai.
It'd explain the targetting of a very major player on the youkai side better than the alternative, in my opinion.

The alternative being that it is instead a group of youkai with similar motivations, but different underlying reasons.
The peace making humans more apathetic and thus not fearful of youkai, which could cause starvation and such.
Less likely I think, but worth considering as an option.

Options one and two seem rather similar in effect, if you ask me, though the emphasis is a little different.
The first focuses on really examining an obelisk, they might actually be dangerous to the touch, but that might just be a necessary risk.
The second option... I'm not actually fully sure what the goal is.
Ostensibly to bring the whole contraption down to the ground to inspect, but then what?
The third option could clue us in more on any special powers the assailants had, which could be useful down the line.

I say the priority lies with the obelisks for now, though like I said earlier they might be dangerous.

[X] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."
-[X] Make sure everybody is ready for any possible danger when you do interact with them.
--[X] Afterwards try to figure out how they managed to impale her.

If pointing out the thing with the crosses is not metagaming and I didn't completely misunderstand that exchange, then:

[X] Point out that the crosses might be the reason Reimu didn't hear anything; their enchantments might be a clue.
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>>204637 here.
Sorry for the double post but I forgot to point out that the site unfortunately did not recognise the thread as a story yet.
Did you mark it as an update when posting?
If you did then it might be that the thread OP needs to be posted using a trip to become a story, but that is pure speculation on my end because I am not a writer myself.
Maybe one of the other anons/writers could provide better instructions, my apologies.
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[x] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."

>>204638
Front page has stuff https://www.thp.moe/?page=faq
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>>204639
Yeah I mentioned the FAQ before, but I just realised there's a note on the user panel login that says "new writers must have their first story added by staff to the story list before they are able to access their settings," so maybe that's it?
OP does have a trip now.
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Probably going to want to jump on the Discord/Matrix and poke Teruyo (our admin) about it. Your OP needs to be changed to have the same trip anyway if you want the update posts to register on the front page. Plus, it'll probably get your story on the list faster.
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[ X ] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."
- [ X ] Take proper precautions before actually doing it.
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>>204640 here.
Just wanted to make clear that I am not OP; just an anon trying (and failing) to troubleshoot.
Just didn't want to leave any possible misunderstandings because I realise my word choice might have been misleading.
Thank you for writing in the actual way to get this sorted.
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[X] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."
-[ X ] Take proper precautions before actually doing it.
--[X] Afterwards try to figure out how they managed to impale her.
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[X] "Let's try and pull one of those obelisks out."
-[X] Make sure everybody is ready for any possible danger when you do interact with them.
--[X] Afterwards try to figure out how they managed to impale her.

[X] Point out that the crosses might be the reason Reimu didn't hear anything; their enchantments might be a clue.
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We will be back later today. Got new pc. Had to get hdmi to USB c adapter to use my drawing tablet. Girls are now investigating...
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