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File 133965638588.png - (794.67KB, 900x1200, Picturenotrepresentative.png) [iqdb]
9588No. 9588
Finally, you all are gone. Intruders, fighters, you don't belong here. A life of peace and harmony I hoped to live seamlessly here was destroyed, if only for a moment, all because you had something you deemed important. You overlanders.

Because being "under" someone is something that you humans strive to avoid.
Because being "under" someone is deplorable to your selfish hearts.

I know that the youkai in your realm would never be like that It doesn't matter whether I am underground or not; we're all equals, whether it be food, or as friends. It feels weird, but after being trapped down here with nowhere else to go, those who I’d been taught were enemies are the ones that I now trust.

A loud voice interrupts my thoughts.
"Hey, Naikan!" It's that boisterous oni again. She's probably at the entrance to my burrow; her voice is so loud I can hear it in my bunk.

She was the first to befriend me, and only because I was interesting to her. But, I wasn't acting this way to please her. I choose always to act on my own thoughts, and to reveal myself with my actions. There's nothing I don't hide.

I reply back. "Did you need me for something, master?"

"Get out here, loner," Yuugi exclaimed. "It's like you're trying to kill yourself or something! I haven't seen you in days!"

Ah, of course. Yuugi likes to exaggerate, if only for an effect she wanted. A few days of seclusion never really hurt anyone.

"I have Tadashi ready to go too! Hurry up!"

I subconsciously rub my arm. It's still sore from the last time I tried to physically refuse. The best I can do is talk her down, but my mind is too tired. I probably haven't talked to anyone in a long while, so I guess a little interaction won't be too bad for me.

"Alright, master, let me change." It sickens me how different my voice and my mind intoned.

I sat up from my bed and headed to a higher burrow. I wasn't sure yet if I was going to change yet or not.

[ ] Wear casual wear; no need to dress fancy.
[ ] Dress up; you might make a fool of herself.
[ ] Continue to make excuses.

---

A/N:
I'm not 100% yet, so I don't feel right in writing any of my stories at the moment. Consider this as my exercise in getting back into writing. Whether this succeeds or flops isn't my goal; I just wanna get writing again.
>>No. 9589
[x] Wear casual wear; no need to dress fancy.

I doubt we need anything that fancy.
>>No. 9590
[x] Continue to make excuses.

I don't know what she wants him to do but fuck if I'm going to let him do it without a fight.
>>No. 9592
[x] Wear casual wear; no need to dress anything fancy.
>>No. 9593
[X] Wear casual wear; no need to dress fancy.

Unless Naikan's some sort of butler I don't see the need to dress up.
>>No. 9595
[x] Wear casual wear; no need to dress fancy.
Considering this will probably be an oni party, everyone there will be too drunk to care about what we wear within the first 30 minutes.
>>No. 9623
[Y] Wear casual wear; no need to dress fancy. (4)
[N] Continue to make excuses. (1)

Well, I didn’t want to make Yuugi mad. I considered for the slightest moment that I should just sluff off Yuugi's invitation, make excuses, and just stay here cooped up, but even I had to admit I was nearing my limit. I could only stay here for so long before I longed for the outside again.

"Master, what should I wear?" Once again, my public voice was sickeningly sweet and polite, but I dismissed any further thought. I've gone back and forth on this issue, and I wasn't about to let Yuugi be the cause of my frustration.

"Who cares what you wear? Just get on out here!" Her voice, by comparison, was honest. Sure, I called it how I saw it, but from the time I spent with her, it was obvious she lived and breathed it. Sorry, Yuugi, I don't have as much experience at being subconsciously honest as you probably do.

The kimono off to the side never even crossed my mind. Mikiru was there, and I didn't want him to even get the notion that he could do one of his "pranks" on me. Instead, I wandered to my dressing table and picked up some shorts and a loose shirt. The clothes were comfortable and easy to wear - I could make do with it for now. After what happened last time, I wasn't going out there wearing pants again. To keep the illusion up for Mikiru, I made sure not to accidentally loosen my sarashi while I changed, and after a short bit, I headed out.

I saw Yuugi as soon as I exited, waiting patiently outside on the lower level. She was carrying Mikiru with her whole arm around his waist like he was some sort of sleeping bag. From the way he was trying to get out of Yuugi's armlock, it looked like he didn't want to come either. "Hi, master," I called as I jumped down to reach the ground where she was.

Yuugi reached out and patted my head. It was our sort of greeting. "Hey, it looks like you made it after all! C'mon, we're gonna be late for the party!"

Yuugi had already turned, Mikiru in tow, and began to walk off toward the main street. As I ran to catch up, I called out to her. "Wait, Yuugi? What party?" Yuugi just laughed off my question, and I didn't bother to ask again.

As we walked, I could see various fairies and a few spirits lingering here and there beside the main road. The few fairies that crossed our path and wanted to attack us were shot. Mikiru's danmaku were patterned after rocks, and his slingshot wasn't in his back pocket anymore, so I could only assume that it was him. We might have been born here in the underground, but that didn't mean everyone else thought we belonged here.

It was clear after a little while that Mikiru had stopped resisting Yuugi's grip. I didn't pay it any attention, but a few moments later, it was obvious why. Yuugi had stopped in front of Mikiru's best friend's house. Arata's house. Yuugi let Mikiru go and smiled at us. "The party's in here." Because of what happened last time at a party, I couldn't resist looking Mikiru in the eye and glaring at him as a warning not to try anything in there.

[ ] Hold on, why isn't Arata greeting us?
[ ] Why are we in front of Arata's house?
[ ] Yuugi brought it up, so it has to be good.
>>No. 9624
[x] Hold on, why isn't Arata greeting us?
>>No. 9625
[x] Why are we in front of Arata's house?

Obviously a surprise party, can't blame an oni for being an oni. Probably more interesting to know why here and not somewhere else.
>>No. 9626
[x] Yuugi brought it up, so it has to be good.

Never question master's judgement.
>>No. 9627
[X] Yuugi brought it up, so it has to be good.

We'll find out soon enough.
>>No. 9628
[X] Yuugi brought it up, so it has to be good.

Works for me~!
>>No. 9678
[Y] Yuugi brought it up, so it has to be good. (3)
[N] Hold on, why isn't Arata greeting us? (1)
[N] Why are we in front of Arata's house? (1)

Hold on.

Whenever we've gone to Arata's house before, he's almost always there to greet us. In fact, the only times he left were when he was out shopping and visiting us. He's let us know when he's coming before, so that wasn't it, and since it's already past shopping hours, that was out.

And why were we here anyways? Was this to be some sort of surprise party or something?

"Hino, what's the matter?" Whenever I'm deep in thought, I tend not to talk to anyone but Yuugi, so I instinctively turned away from Mikiru, only to receive a pat on my head from Master.

"It's not good to be secretive here, you know," Yuugi chided me. "Are you wondering why we're here?"

I shook my head. "Master, you've brought us here, so I trust you. I did wonder about it a little, but it doesn't bother me now."

"Alright, if you're sure. Let's not go in yet; Kirisame doesn't know we're here." Yuugi gave a hearty laugh, probably at my supposed timidness.

Mikiru spoke up. "So then, what are we doing out here? Just waiting for him?"

"Nope," came the energetic reply, "we're waiting for someone, sure, but not him."

"And that someone is?"

"Just 'someone'! You'll know when you see him."

The banter faded out of my mind as I looked upward. I wondered how it felt to be out of the underground, the pollution of the sun a constant threat on your body. I wondered how it feels to be able to be strong, like Yuugi is. I can't even imagine what kind of pain she must have had to endure in order to look like an oni.

"Oh, there you are!" I recognized that voice. Arata's father? I quickly turned around, but Mikiru beat me to him. He took my favorite hugging arm spot away from me! Reluctantly, I approached him and hugged his right side. It was rare to see him, and he was kind of a father figure for all of us kids, so it was nice to just embrace the fact he was there.

"And Yuugi, how's it been?" Daisuke saluted to Yuugi, who returned the gesture.

"Pretty good. You don't look like you've been living on the surface, so that's good!"

Oh right. Daisuke was living on the surface for a while. Apparently he had a daughter, but I've never met her, so I don't think she ever came down here.

Daisuke's voice rang from above me. "Is everything ready, Yuugi?" Yuugi nodded, signalling for the two of us kids to ready ourselves. As both of us reluctantly backed away, Yuugi's smile became noticeable. "So," Yuugi poked Daisuke, "you're moving back for good, huh?"

[ ] "Is your daughter coming too?"
[ ] "Including your wife?"
[ ] "Oh, I see. Arata doesn't know."
>>No. 9681
[x] "Including your wife?"

I feel this'd include the daughter, though it seems the guy kept his other kid in the dark about things.
>>No. 9682
[X] "Including your wife?"

Works for me~!
>>No. 9800
[x] "Is your daughter coming too?"
All glory to the Black-White
>>No. 9801
[x] "Including your wife?"

Doesn't have the slightest idea about what's happening in this story.
>>No. 9878
That should be enough votes. Closing votes now, and writing.
>>No. 10104
Posting from my phone because I haven't been home in awhile.

Anyways, trying to upkeep all of my projects caused me to relapse so not only do I not have a computer, I don't have strength to stand at times. The absence of an update is due to a hospital visit plus rest. I feel well enough to type this up, but don't expect anything from me for at least two months. I need to really slow down, and unfortunately, my health is more important than my story.

Keep it real, and I'll catch you on the flipside.
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