The woman stares at you blankly in a state of disbelief for a moment, her eyes wide with surprise. As if she can’t believe what she just heard, she cups a hand around one of her ears, turning her head to the side and leaning forward to hear you better. “...Sorry, but could you run that by me again? I must have misheard you just now.”
“Teach me,” you repeat yourself, wasting no time in arguing with her, “...Teach me to read. Teach me to write.”
“...Really? You’re asking me?” she says, her eyes extremely wide now. Placing a hand at her chin with her arms crossed, she surveys you with a frown, watching you while in thought. She reaches up and places a warm hand at your forehead, quickly retracting it on contact. “Yikes. As cold as always. I guess you don’t have a fever.”
“Don’t mess with me,” you say frigidly.
“I just didn’t expect it from you, really,” she says, faintly smiling. “...But, well, I guess it would be good practice if I ever do get to open up a school, huh? Though...” she trails off, looking hesitant now. She places a hand at her chin again, looking down at the ground as she mumbles, “...now that I think about it, teaching someone how to read and write sounds like a real chore. Maybe I should reconsider...”
“If you don’t want to, then forget it.”
“I’m just kidding, haha!” she says, lifting her chin and winking as she laughs. Walking to your side, she wraps her arms around yours, forcefully pulling you close as she begins to drag you off in that same manner as she always does. “By the time you’re through my course, you’ll be a famous poet. I can assure you of that!”
“...What’s a poet?”
She stops, looking at you with pitying eyes like you’re an idiot. She shakes her head, and lets out an exaggerated sigh. “We’ve got a lot to work on.”
...Why is it that you seek knowledge? You know for sure that it’s not for the pursuit of knowledge itself; you are no intellectual, and you never were or will ever become one. As you’ve decided yourself, you don’t care to know what is written down. You don’t care for them in the slightest, and yet, still you asked to be taught. Why...? Why is it? Is it... is it to fulfill some desire? A desire to experience what was lost to you... to take a chance you were denied before. What is it?
You don’t know.
Seated by the light of a dim lamp illuminating the darkened room, you clumsily hold a brush in your hand, unused to having anything in your grip other than your spear. Sitting close-by next to you is Kiyone, firmly guiding your hand as you run the tip of the brush over the thick roll of paper, leaving behind a messy, ungraceful trail of ink.
“...Easy enough, isn’t it?” she says, looking up at you with a smile, her face lit by the lamp’s glow. “The one pointing up is ‘up’ and the one pointing down is ‘down.’ It’s simple!”
“They all look the same,” you say.
The voice of a child comes from the other side of the table. Kiyone’s daughter, Keine, places her brush down at the table, the tip resting on the ink holder so it doesn’t spill onto the wood. She holds up the small piece of paper she was given, displaying it to the two of you. On it, characters much more complicated than the ones you were just taught are drawn, looking much more refined than yours despite the fact that the brush the child was using was too big for her hand.
“Oh!” Kiyone lets out a joyful squeal, hurriedly scooting over to her child. Pulling herself up next to her, she wraps her arms around the girl’s head, hugging it close to her chest while assaulting the top of her hair. “Good job, that’s my girl! She’s so smart, isn’t she?”
You stare wordlessly at your own roll of paper before lifting your chin up.
“Ahaha, come on,” Kiyone laughs, winking as she pulls away from the girl and scoots back to your side. “Don’t be jealous of a kid. I said I’d make you a poet, didn’t I? I haven’t yet given up on that. Now, let’s get to work.”
A few hours pass, and by that time, the child has fallen asleep, resting her head on her mother’s lap. You silently work your brush, copying several characters that Kiyone has written for you. As you press the head of your brush against the paper, leaving behind a stylish curve at the end of one character, the woman speaks up.
“Say, I want to ask you a question.”
You can feel her eyes on you, but you don’t let yourself be distracted from your work, continuing to copy down the characters.
“Why do you fight?”
“...I told you,” you say, dipping your brush in ink. “It’s my nature. My purpose is to kill youkai. That’s all.”
“Then,” she pauses for a while before speaking again. “...Why did you make that your nature? Why did you decide that?”
[x] “To live.” >>18342 Everyone can go down the wrong path and change. Your reason is stubborn, close minded and asking for things to go wrong. It goes against everything that we, yes we because 100% of us voted for it, all tried to do the whole time since forever. I don't know where you came from but to suddenly say he is a killer let's be evil and slay Youkai just because is not going to work out now. Instead of leading meaningless discussions we should work to do the right thing.
It took me a while to come to a decision on this but I think it's better for us to be truthful to both Kiyone and ourselves on why we originally choose our path. Hiding from the truth just seems like the type of thing that will cause us problems later on.
It's a ugly part our past that we need to confront if we hopefully want anything to change for good.
>>18344 I don't think he's saying that it's impossible for Tayasumi but that his original reason for becoming what he has was do to wanting revenge for his family and village.
>Youkai… Youkai…! Murderous… all of them… they should all just die…!
>You struggle to get up. You have to stop her. You have to… avenge everyone… Your fingers wrap around the cold, steel handle of the naginata beside you. You can’t let it… end like this. Not in this… miserable way.
>“Someone… please… help me,” you cry weakly, desperately. “I… I have to kill her… Please…!”
>>18344 >I don't know where you came from but to suddenly say he is a killer let's be evil and slay Youkai just because is not going to work out now. Instead of leading meaningless discussions we should work to do the right thing.
Wrong person dude. I'm actually on humanizing side, but Tayasumi's reason for asking for power wasn't to survive, but to kill.
That to me just seems like we're playing word games in a attempt to hide from the truth of why we first started down our path. We wanted revenge on Lumiya and considered all Youkai to be monsters, to be abominations like her. We weren't trying to punish her but instead where seeking revenge on her, and to me there is some difference between the two. We also hated all youkai in our dying moments and wanted to see them all die.
There is nothing 'righteous' about the path that we choose. We made our selves into a monster even by the point of view of other youkai in order to have the power needed to kill what we hated. Not just Lumiya, but the entire species and is something that we need to confront if we're to ever attempt much less succeed in moving beyond what we have become.
>>12450 >You struggle to get up. You have to stop her. You have to… avenge everyone… Your fingers wrap around the cold, steel handle of the naginata beside you. You can’t let it… end like this. Not in this… miserable way.
>>13610 >listen to me and youll be able to avenge everyone (Not to mention the entire spiel about making a world for humans before Headgames jibbers back into 'destroying everything'.
>>14304 >Sarutahiko’s kin will answer in blood for the treachery of their god.
>>14685 >Let’s burn away everything that’s hurt us and made us suffer. And then—and then we’ll finally be free from our burdens. Isn’t that wonderful? Wouldn’t you like that? Free, free, free from everything. Happiness, sadness, fear, anger, none of those things will ever mean anything to us anymore.
Tayasumi didn't really seem to care about living though, he hated all youkai as he lay dying and wanted to kill Lumiya. His thoughts weren't on how he wanted to live but on how he wanted Lumiya to die.
Why is it that you chose this path? Why is it that you chose to make yourself an enemy of all youkai? For what reason did you decide to spill their blood? That’s a question you haven’t asked yourself in a long time, if you ever did. Whether you had a reason or not, or if it was simply the result of an instinct ingrained within you from the moment you opened your eyes, you’re not really sure.
But, if there was a reason, then what is it? What is the simplest explanation you can offer for becoming what you are now? What can change a person--a human being--to something so detested and feared like you? The answer to that question, you know. You have always known. It has been a part of your life ever since you first gained consciousness, and that is...
“Hate,” you say, letting the hand controlling the brush come to a stop as you look toward Kiyone, who has sidled up next to you in the time you took your eyes off her, having placed a pillow below her daughter’s head. “Because I hated them. I hated them, so I wanted to kill them.”
Is it really, though? Is that... really the only reason? There was something else... Something very important. At least, you feel that way.
“In other words,” the woman begins, leaning closer. “The reason why you live, and the reason for everything you do, is because of your hate. You have nothing but your hatred. And to make sure it stays that way, you shut your heart out form everything else. Don’t you think... that’s a very sad existence?”
“You don’t have to live for that. You’re trying to change, right? So start by changing what you live for. Just let it go. Let the past fade from your mind,” she says, staring into your never-blinking eyes. “Why don’t you try living for something else instead?”
“What else would I live for?”
“Hmm, well...” she pauses, placing a finger to her lips, her eyes wandering about the room as she ponders. They travel back to you, and her lips turn in a mischievous smile as she leans forward again, “...How about for me?”
You stare at her, and she keeps her head thrust forward like that for a few seconds before breaking out into a giggle as she withdraws herself, covering her mouth with her hand.
“Just kidding,” she says, her smile growing a bit wider. “Well, anyway, I’m sure you can find something. Anything else would do, really. Just find something you really want to do, and then just go along with it, as long as you aren’t hurting someone else. That’s really how everyone should live their lives, isn’t it?”
“...You might be right,” you mumble, lifting the brush from the page and dipping the head into the ink.
Are things really that simple, though?
“Well, you’re getting along pretty well, Nameless,” Kiyone says, standing over your shoulder, hunched forward with her hands on her knees as she looks over the page laid out in front of you, examining the intricate characters you’ve drawn. “...It’s been about three weeks since we started, hasn’t it? Well, you’re no Basho, but I suppose you’re getting there.”
You continue to draw the next character, smoothly running the brush head over the rough surface of the paper. Without turning your gaze from it, you begin to speak, “You seem a bit on edge lately.”
“You look anxious,” you say, applying a finishing touch on the last character, stabbing at the paper with just enough force to leave behind a large, curved dot. You lay the brush down at the side of the paper, and turn your head to look at the woman directly. “You’ve been like this the last few days.”
“Oh!” she says, trying her best to smile, though her expression quickly gives her away as being a bit nervous, which is unusual for her. She leans forward, her smile becoming more devious, the way she always does when she attempts to be teasing, “You’ve been watching me that closely, have you?”
“Not particularly,” you say in a dull tone of voice, starting on the next character now. “I just happened to notice, that’s all. I won’t ask the reason why, unless you feel like telling me.”
“Huh, well...” She backs off, frowning slightly as she sweeps her hair back, getting them out of her eyes as she stares past you, at the entrance to the humble home. Finally snapping herself out of her thoughts, she smiles again, a bit apologetically now, as she looks to you once more, beginning to speak, “...Actually, I need you to do me a favor, Nameless.”
“Quit calling me by that ridiculous name,” you say, not quite snapping at her, but your tone a bit more agitated than is usual.
“Then pick a name for yourself already.”
You remain silent for a bit, before shaking your head. “...Whatever.”
“See? If you can’t think of a better name, you’re in no position to be complaining,” Kiyone says with a small grin of triumph, reaching forward and flicking you on the forehead lightly. “Anyway, hear me out, Nameless. I need you to watch Keine for me tonight. You can do that, can’t you?”
“Like before?” you ask, your attention grabbed. The last time she asked you to do such a thing was a month ago, on the day of the full moon. You’re sure that, even without counting the days, tonight will be a full moon as well. “...Fine, if that’s all your asking, then I won’t complain.”
“Thanks!” she says, nodding happily. She shifts up onto one knee, and lifts herself up, dusting off the skirt of her dress as she turns around. She looks at one of the open windows, gazing at the orange glow of the sun. “...It’s already this late, huh? I’d better start making preparations.”
She walks to a different room at a brisk pace, and a few minutes later, she returns to you, holding her daughter by the hand and leading her into the room. She looks to you, and gently shoves the girl in your direction, bending forward to whisper to her.
“Be sure to watch him for me,” she says, patting the girl on the head.
The little girl looks up to her mother and nods before turning her gaze to you.
She no longer seems as uncomfortable when around you, though it’s probably less out of bond and more out of familiarity. You’re still not good with people in general, and it goes doubly so with children, so you never spared more words for her than was strictly necessary.
“I’ll be back in the morning,” Kiyone says, turning her gaze to you now. “Don’t stay up too late.”
“Right,” you say, watching her step out the door.
...Now, what is it that she has to do, that she must leave for a night once every month? You have a guess as to the reason why, but you’d need to confirm it before doing anything. You’ve already decided to follow after her, to see the reason with your very eyes, and this time, you won’t allow yourself to stop for anything. The question is, whether this girl should also learn the truth about her mother, or not. Should you bring her with you?
A little jarring to see "Nameless" so talkative. He actually initiated conversation with Kiyone; it was startling.
Even if we are on the path to rehabilitation, we shouldn't take Keine with us. Kiyone doesn't want her daughter seeing whatever happens on the full moon, so it isn't our place to drag her along anyways. She'll be fine at home for just one night.
I'm getting a bad feeling about this. Something tells me this night will be dangerous.
I do believe that if he decides to kill Kiyone, which I find it hard to happen after the time they've spent together and how much he seems to have changed, if anything do happens, I think Keine will be the reason he will stop. I can just feel it.
Besides, I don't want to leave Keine behind. I also suspect that she will follow him if he goes alone, so she will discover her mother's curse anyway; at least this way it's safer for her. Nameless may also warn her of what's going on with her mother, that would be a nice bonus.
Her presence should stop things from getting too intense, and I'm worried about someone kidnapping her while we investigate. The tengu would know the days Keine that steps out of the village, and I don't think their involvement in Tayasumi's story is over.
It's interesting hearing Tayasumi speak conversationally again in just a few weeks. His personality is returning faster than expected, and he appears to have taken to writing with some industry.
Satisfying our curiosity is fine, but deciding for Kiyone to take along her daughter to see her transform or whatever else she's doing, even though she's obviously trying to hide it from her? It's not our decision to make, and I'm sure she has a good reason to keep the secret from her. Also, I have faith our guy here can keep his cool without a morality pet around.
>No, not really. I think it's pretty cool we can fight Youkai and nearly beat Yuuka. This is an empty existence that leads to nothing and will end in death at one point. Nothing accomplished in your life, only death, hate and loss of yourself.
>>18415 >This is an empty existence that leads to nothing and will end in death at one point. Nothing accomplished in your life, only death, hate and loss of yourself.
Tayasumi's legacy is not all bad. This is a time when youaki-human violence was common. That he's killing youkai and frightening others into hiding is why his presence is tolerated by the humans at all, even though he's a monster himself.
>>18416 >And sure, we might have almost beaten Yuuka, but so what? What would that have accomplished besides bringing us one step closer to Youkai genocide?
There was no 'almost'. She was afraid. That's as close to defeat as immensely powered super-beings come.
But he has started to change. He's been doing many 'unnecessary' things for the last few weeks. They can't all be explained in trying to get close to Kiyone in order to kill her.
Even his decision now to bring Keine along is in this vein. If he intends to kill Kiyone like all youkai, how does Keine's presence in any way advance this goal? Again, it's unnecessary.
>>18418 >One bad tree does not ruin an entire orchard.
Times will change, and in Reimu's day, the use of spell card rules will make existences like Tayasumi unnecessary. But that's still years off (many, many years if Keine doesn't age as quickly as a normal human), and if one 'bad tree' wiped out an entire village, there's the chance one will try it again.
I just hope that if and when he needs to fight, having let go so much of his hate hasn't crippled his abilities.
>that's still years off Right, this takes place in the past. I keep forgetting that.
>there's the chance one will try it again. I'm not against beating the ever-lasting shit out of (or even killing, if necessary) any youkai who dares to attack humans, or does anything to deserve it. I'm against letting revenge continue to consume him, which happens to mostly shows itself through killing youkai. Not sure what I'd do if he ran into Rumia again though.
>having let go so much of his hate It's still probably there, but yeah, he is making good progress in that regard.
>hasn't crippled his abilities. ...Headgames has been awfully quiet lately, in both the past and present.
>his presence is tolerated by the humans Tolerated is the wrong word. They are scared of him, they see him as nothing less than a monster, even one bigger than the youkai. He will never have a place among them, they would try to kill him or get rid of him the first time a chance arises. His legacy will be one of fear, hate and mistrust. Every human will remember him as a monster who is to be feared, despised and better not be spoken about. >But he has started to change. He's been doing many 'unnecessary' things for the last few weeks. Yes, he finally starts to change for the better. He has been trying hard to stop being a mindless killing machine that has no goal or heart. He is trying to regain his self and become human once again. >They can't all be explained in trying to get close to Kiyone in order to kill her. He does not beat around he bush, he just goes and kills youkai. He would not wait until a special time. It is not his goal to kill her. >if one 'bad tree' wiped out an entire village, there's the chance one will try it again. Now that is pretty radical. Hitler thought like that too. >I just hope that if and when he needs to fight, having let go so much of his hate hasn't crippled his abilities. Here is to hoping that there is not gonna be any fighting and he can leave the killing behind him and start a new life.
This is what we have been working on for months and i am sure it will finally pay off pretty soon. We are on the right path and not the let's just kill youkai without thinking because it sounds cool and funny.
>>18422 >Tolerated is the wrong word. They are scared of him, they see him as nothing less than a monster, even one bigger than the youkai. He will never have a place among them, they would try to kill him or get rid of him the first time a chance arises. His legacy will be one of fear, hate and mistrust. Every human will remember him as a monster who is to be feared, despised and better not be spoken about.
>>18422 >let's just kill youkai without thinking because it sounds cool and funny How insulting.
You speak of Tayasumi's legacy as if he were unwanted, and taboo. This is not true. When Tayasumi became the Youkai Hunter, many youkai were completely hostile, and regularly killed humans. If I remember correctly, his entire village was moving shop because of this very reason.
That being said; we are in a transitory period. Many youkai are becoming less hostile, and likely to attack the humans. When they do decide to harass them, they are firmly refuted by beings such as Kiyone. A killer such as "Nameless" is no longer needed in this day and age. Unerringly killing all youkai simply won't work anymore. He needs something else to live for.
To that end, I support everyone's decision to "humanize" him. What I don't mesh with, is every bodies convenient memory-loss about the very nature of his powers. If we go against Headgame's wishes, he will pull the plug on the life support that he grants him. By trying to deny his nature, we are dragging him one step closer to death. I am not okay with this.
>>18424 It is only natural for humans to fear what they don't understand. If someone is stronger than the strongest youkai then it is to be feared. That is how human minds work. Plus, he does not come over very trustworthy and nice, does not talk or is social. >If we go against Headgame's wishes, he will pull the plug on the life support that he grants him. By trying to deny his nature, we are dragging him one step closer to death. I am not okay with this. His wish is to destroy every youkai. What do you think will happen once this is done? He will have nothing left, die trying or get killed afterwards. This is the time we need to resist him and get rid of it.
Better die as the man he was than become someones puppet without a will and only get told what to do. I am not okay with killing someone like Keine or Kiyone and others who did nothing wrong. >To that end, I support everyone's decision to "humanize" him. You contradict yourself. At one hand you are for it but on the other you say we should not deny him his nature, being a killer. >By trying to deny his nature, we are dragging him one step closer to death. Death is natural. There is nothing wrong with with dying when you want to accomplish something and can do it in the end.
>we are dragging him one step closer to death Well, at the very least, I'm operating under the assumption that he'll die at the end. Probably not a healthy assumption, but this arc just feels like something that'll end in a "Redemption Equals Death" deal or something. It also doesn't help that he doesn't seem to be alive in the main story, and as far as I can tell, that's one of the main reasons people think Kiyone's going to die as well.
How long after "Tayasumi's Story" is "Youkai Killer's Story" anyway? Just a general description will do.
Tayasumi is very covert about his abilities in front of regular humans. I recall a scene where he was guarding a wagon, and he held back so as not to alienate or scare them. Correct me if I'm wrong, its been a long time.
>someones puppet without a will Why does everyone think he "mindlessly" kills youkai, or do so only under Headgame's prompt? Tayasumi hates youkai just as much as Headgames, and kills them with without any undue influence all the time.
>You contradict yourself. I realize that. Like everyone else, I wish for Tayasumi to have a happy end. What I reject is every ones fervent wish's to deny his nature as the youkai hunter, for I believe it is the only way he can stay alive. I'm probably being pointlessly optimistic though, as there is no optimal way for Tayasumi to live at this point.
>Why does everyone think he "mindlessly" kills youkai, or do so only under Headgame's prompt? Tayasumi hates youkai just as much as Headgames, and kills them with without any undue influence all the time. Because he is full of hate. And hate clouds your judgement. Is it still his will or is it the will of headgames that rules his thoughts now? Did it not just disappear after he took care of the ones who killed them? >What I reject is every ones fervent wish's to deny his nature as the youkai hunter, for I believe it is the only way he can stay alive. I do not deny his nature as a youkai hunter. But as a monster who hunts youkai. His job and his current state are two different things. >I'm probably being pointlessly optimistic though, as there is no optimal way for Tayasumi to live at this point.
We aim for everything. Make him human, take care of headgames, live happily with Kiyone and Keine.
>>18430 >Is it still his will or is it the will of headgames that rules his thoughts now? The scenes in which Headgames pops up are pretty clearly marked. If it's not Headgames having report with Tayasumi in italics, I generally assume all thoughts and goal-orientation are Tayasumi's. Headgames may have inhibited most desires and emotions in him, but he didn't erase his all-encompassing hate of youkai.
>I do not deny his nature as a youkai hunter. But as a monster who hunts youkai. You will need to clarify. As far as I have seen, Tayasumi is not a mindless brute who hunts youkai. He may use abilities that are frightening, and described as monstrous, but he is very level-headed, and knows exactly what he is doing. Nothing about that is as the legends dictate; that he simply killed everything in his path with ruthless discrimation.
>Aim for everything Even I'm not that optimistic. If we try and get everything, we will fail and get nothing, or an other unsatisfactory result.
>>18422 >Now that is pretty radical. Hitler thought like that too.
You misunderstand. I don't believe that Tayasumi's intention of killing all youkai is reasonable or even feasible. Just that his presence as one who exists to kill youkai (in the minds of powerful youkai like Yuka or the tengu) may be necessary to deter and repel youkai attacks.
That's preventing genocide, not causing it. We know that currently humans are in much more danger of being wiped out wholesale by beings like Rumia than the youkai are in danger of being wiped out by Tayasumi.
>>18425 >To that end, I support everyone's decision to "humanize" him. What I don't mesh with, is every bodies convenient memory-loss about the very nature of his powers. If we go against Headgame's wishes, he will pull the plug on the life support that he grants him. By trying to deny his nature, we are dragging him one step closer to death. I am not okay with this.
I don't believe his powers are contingent on the guidance of some other entity. For a being in the collective memory of both youkai and humanity, his story passed down by generations, there should be enough faith to support his independent existence. His story was not the tale of a human possessed by a monster, it was the tale of a human who became a monster, through his own actions. Moreover, his history may be recorded by Kiyone without ties to some mysterious other entity; in fact, he just told her what is currently the source of his power, hatred. And this may not be the case in the future, being that this is a night where history may change.
Headgames may have whispered the words into his ear that gave birth to his existence as a monster, but I don't think they sustain him. Going against his 'nature' might weaken him, but I don't think he's going to die of existential anemia. That's more likely to happen because of some of the bad choices he's made.
His powers, and by extension his life, are absolutely contingent on Headgames. Headgames is not in the habit of lying. He says we die if we try and resist him, I believe it.
>there should be enough faith to support his independent existence. Not only are we not in that time-period, thus there wouldn't be any stories, but if we depend on his story and legacy to exist, than we have already lost. Present peoples belief is that he is a human who became a undiscriminating killer for whatever reasons. Using that method to live, we would then be a mindless killer.
We are in a shitty catch 22 here. If we resist Headgames non-stop, he will eventually resurface strong enough to supplant his will and personality, effectively killing Tayasumi, and becoming the being who judicially kills all. If we don't resist him, we keep killing youkai in a society that does not need an exterminator, becoming the man who ruthlessly kills all.
>>18433 >Headgames is not in the habit of lying. He says we die if we try and resist him, I believe it.
I can't think of any specific counter examples, probably because every single thing he's ever said to Mikio has been a lie, a half-truth, or plain wrong. If there's a reason for that, it's because Mikio has continually made a conscious choice to not listen to him. The villain is intelligent, motivated, and persuasive, but not omniscient. Certainly, Tayasumi will continue to be bound by the fate Headgames has predicted so long as he continues to accept the role Headgames has laid out for him.
>Not only are we not in that time-period, thus there wouldn't be any stories, but if we depend on his story and legacy to exist, than we have already lost. Present peoples belief is that he is a human who became a undiscriminating killer for whatever reasons. Using that method to live, we would then be a mindless killer.
Tayasumi is famous, even among humans, and quite powerful in his day, and this is clearly before his legacy becomes more tragic. Though a bizarre one, he is definitely fits the broad definition of a youkai. These are beings that are sustained on human faith. He has been approached by humans seeking his help in defeating youkai, and if the thought he was an indiscriminate killer was very strong, Kiyone would not have protected him so, nor would the villagers tolerate him. So if that progression of his story comes at all, it will come later.
His story as it reached Mikio in the present might be corrupted for various reasons, especially if it was passed by oral tradition. We don't know if it was recorded differently by the humans, or even if such a story exists at all in their documented history or their public consciousness. The evidence Tayasumi's fate being a bad one is strong, but between two generations of history-consuming werebeasts who play an integral role, the probable formation of the Great Border, the biased, indirect source of the report, and an unknown number of years, it's not totally damning.
>We are in a shitty catch 22 here. If we resist Headgames non-stop, he will eventually resurface strong enough to supplant his will and personality, effectively killing Tayasumi, and becoming the being who judicially kills all.
He's never been able to do much against the will of any of the principals, and most of his 'influence' was only mediated by a conscious choice on their part. Over time, as we've seen with Tayasumi, their personality is eroded away slowly, over months, probably years. However, it's clearly reversible, with Tayasumi being able to access more of his feelings, motivations, and memories, as well as being able to express independent desires and a broader array of emotion. Fighting Headgames isn't killing Tayasumi; it's bringing him back to life.
The catch-22 is that if he's reacquiring a human mind, he may also be reacquiring a human body. This carries vulnerabilities that a youkai looking for revenge might exploit. Ideally he could find some middle ground, like a role as a youkai that hunts other youkai to protect humans, but I don't think he's really capable of accepting the youkai part of himself, at least without Headgames shutting down his higher brain function.
From a metagame perspective, we want as much conflict between Tayasumi and Headgames as possible now, so that when the inevitable showdown between Miki and Headgames comes, we'll have more information about the latter's capabilities.
>>18437 >I can't think of any specific counter examples
Likewise, I cannot think of a specific example of when Headgames has lied to, or otherwise tried to manipulate Mikio. As far as I can remember, he has been saying the same shit to Mikio as he has to Tayasumi. Forgive me if I am entirely wrong here. It's been a long time since those threads.
However, Tayasumi does listen to him. Most of the time, Headgames and Tayasumi's agenda clearly coincide. I don't believe there is any way of breaking out of his fate as the Youkai Killer, except death.
While it may not be damning yet, I firmly believe there will come a point in his story where he will start killing everything. At that point, his legacy will start to change into the unfavorable one he has in present time. Needless to say, surviving on that sort of faith is a bad idea.
We have no idea how long it took Tayasumi to lose his emotions and personality. His story had a timeskip immediately after he accepted Headgames' power, and the next scene we saw with him he was an emotionless automaton. It could have been immediately, or it could have been slowly, as you say. We don't know. Either way, it wasn't until recently, (which as far as the timeline goes, was possibly far into the future) that he was able to slowly regain memories and emotion.
>it's bringing him back to life
I don't think so. It may be giving him human thoughts and emotions again, but this is a bad thing in all ways. Tayasumi is a dead corpse living on borrowed power. Headgames has already stated that he can take that away at any and all times. Without Headgames, Tayasumi will die. Even if I'm wrong, and he will be just fine without his power, he will still die when the various youkai after his head come calling.
>Metagame It's dangerous to speak for all. For instance, I wish Tayasumi to go kill all youkai, so that he might continue living.
>>18421 >...Headgames has been awfully quiet lately, in both the past and present. Do you see now? She is a monster like all the rest. She has betrayed you. Betrayed US. This is what happens when you open your heart. There is no room in this world for these beasts. They will take away everything you've ever held dear! It's time to them pay, make them all pay! Make HER pay...
...and the child will be next!
This is how I see the next update going.
While I'd like to keep Keine safe, I don't want to leave her all alone. What if she's kidnapped by some youkai/human that despise you/Kiyone? Perhaps she would be counterbalance to Tayasumi being consumed with hatred at realizing the truth. When he looks at her, will he see a scared child who loves her mother? Will he hold himself back simply because she's a child? Or will taking her with us endanger her life if the enemy is where Kiyone is? Will it endanger ours, should we feel some moment of compassion to protect her?
Who knows what's going to happen here. I just hope it won't turn out badly.
I'm personally all for another method of trying to find out if Kiyone is a were-beast that doesn't involve either bringing Keine with us when we go spy of Kiyone during the full moon, or risk leaving her behind where any potential enemies might be able to get her while both we and her mother are elsewhere. But if we have to choose one or the other we might as well do what we promised. This way we can at least protect her, and don't have to worry about her get hurt trying to follow us do to her promise.
You make up your mind, and push yourself up off the floor, standing up. The little girl’s gaze follows you as you straighten your body, the child looking at you with questioning eyes. Turning yourself toward her, you take a few steps, bending forward with your hands on your knees and lowering yourself so that your eyes are at a more even level with the child’s.
“Do you want to see?” you ask her.
“See...?” she repeats after you in that shrill childish voice of hers, sounding puzzled. She blinks curiously, and tilts her head in thought, pondering on your words.
You wait a few moments, watching the girl’s reaction before speaking again. You’re not sure whether this is the right thing or not, or if it should be something you should be involving the child in, so, the decision will have to be hers. “Where it is that your mother goes at this time, once every month. Do you want to know?”
“Um...” she frowns, her small body squirming uncomfortably. She bites her lip, looking troubled. “...I want to see, but mom said I should watch you today, so she might get really mad if we leave.”
“I see,” you say, nodding as you straighten your back once again.
You walk around the girl, the child’s head turning to follow after you as you walk up beside her. You bend forward again, and draw a small cry of surprise from the girl as you slip your hands under her arms, taking a hold of her and lifting her up by the armpits. You place her on top of your shoulders, where she awkwardly balances herself, holding onto your head.
“Then if I take you along by force, she’ll only get mad at me. Would it be alright, then?”
You turn toward the door without any further words, reaching out and opening the door. “Watch your head.”
You feel Keine’s body shake as she nods, and you begin walking forward, bending your knees slightly as you move so the child doesn’t hit her head on the top of the doorway. Walking out into the open streets as you close the door behind you, you look up at the sky. Judging from the light still present in the sky, the sun hasn’t quite completely set yet. You lower your gaze, and look about.
That woman, Kiyone, is off in the distance, not having moved too far from her home. Turning your body to her direction, you begin walking, with the little child still riding on your shoulders. If she looks back, it would be rather easy for her to notice you like this. Reaching above your head, you lift the girl up again and place her down beside you.
“Follow close behind,” you say to her.
She nods, and grabs hold of your hakama as you begin to move forward again, trailing after Kiyone as she makes her way through the crowded streets of the village. You slip through the clumps of people, careful not to lose sight of the woman even as you keep a reasonable distance between her and yourself, so as not to be spotted by her. She seems to be... heading for the outskirts of the village. She’s leaving the village, at a time when the creatures of the night are at their strongest and most dangerous. There could only be one reason for that.
What does it mean to you, though? You’re still not yet sure of that right now.
As you approach the perimeter around the village, you feel resistance against you. You look back, and see the child pulling back on your hakama with a troubled, frightful expression on her face. That’s right, you had almost forgotten. It’s common knowledge that the grounds beyond the village itself are dangerous, so it’s no wonder that the child would have reservations against steeping a foot out of it.
“Are you scared?” you ask her.
“A little,” she says, nodding.
“What if I said I would protect you? Would you still be scared then?”
She looks at you, pausing to think, and then shakes her head.
“Then I promise I won’t let you be hurt,” you say, turning away from the girl. You didn’t bring your weapon, but even without it, you have confidence enough in your powers to guarantee the child’s safety, so long as you aren’t careless. “...Let’s go.”
Kiyone, that woman... she’s heading off the safe trail, instead walking toward a densely packed forest. You scowl as you follow after her, a bit further now that there aren’t any more crowds to obstruct visibility. The small hands clutching on to your hakama grow tighter as you follow after the woman into the forest. You take a glance up at the sky; the sun’s almost completely set by now, and the full moon is close to clearly visible. You lower your gaze back to your surroundings and -- where did she go?
She’s gone. In the brief second you took your eyes off her, she’s disappeared into the trees. With an agitated snarl, you look around, turning your head about wildly, hoping to get a glimpse of her somewhere. Has she noticed you? Is that why she’s hidden now? No, wait, you can’t act like this. It’ll frighten the child. You cease your frantic movements, calming yourself down, and take a look around.
It’s dusk. The sun will soon set, and nocturnal creatures will become active very soon. You are without a weapon, and you have to protect this child. This forest is also densely packed, which can obstruct visibility and movement. It might be dangerous to go further in. You don’t plan on abandoning this issue, so even if you leave for now, to leave the girl at home, you’ll definitely be back later. So then, what should you do at this time?
The Youkai-slaying God won't be deterred by some scary noises in the dark. If any youkai come to stir up shit, we will simply annihilate them, and protect Keine while doing so. She'll be fine, considering it's us watching over her.
That we're given an 'are you sure?' choice here is kind of suspicious. I'm thinking Tayasumi by exposing her to this is going to somehow catalyze Keine's acquisition of lycanthrope from her mother. Compounded with Kiyone's almost certainly inevitable death, what happens to his promise to protect her if she becomes a youkai in his time?
As much as I think it could hurt Tayasumi's chances to stop drawing off Headgames' power, the result of acquiescing and actually surviving the events to come could be a whole lot grimmer.
>>18502 Only Sith and morons think in absolutes. And since you're on THP, I guess moron is out of the question.
Now, seriously. Short answer: yes. Long answer: his regrets would have died with him. It's humans nature as food to be killed by youkai. As Lancer said to Shirou, before piercing his heart, there's no shame in dying against a stronger opponent if you've given your all. I'm not saying that everyone should bend over and die, but accepting one's fate is not always a bad thing. Better than the alternative. Come now, sith lord: reviving as a spirit of vengeance with all of his human memories, recollections of a simpler and happier life that he will never experience again, is just wrong. It actually ranks second in the worst Faustian deals ranking (the first one being making a deal to revive your love interest)
EXCEPT that Keine has just proven that he still can gain back his feelings, so I guess he got lucky.
>>18500 >He gave up his humanity for petty revenge. He sure as hell should have regrets.
Regret only comes with a recognition of loss, and by the time he has the presence of mind for that, he'll also have become able to appreciate what he's capable of protecting still. As Mikio surmised in >>17409, losing your humanity isn't a big deal if you're surrounded by the people you love.
>>18503 >Now, seriously. Short answer: yes. Long answer: his regrets would have died with him. It's humans nature as food to be killed by youkai.
Yes, that's true. It's in the nature of humans to be killed by youkai, youkai being defined as monsters that eat humans. You could also say that it's in the nature of rape victims to be raped by rapists. That's also true, by definition. But it's also totally vacuous, and it provides no justification for the act itself.
>As Lancer said to Shirou, before piercing his heart, there's no shame in dying against a stronger opponent if you've given your all. I'm not saying that everyone should bend over and die, but accepting one's fate is not always a bad thing. Better than the alternative.
The words have bearing in Lancer's life because the fate of Cu Chulainn was predetermined and he had knowledge of that within his own time. Now, Tayasumi's fate may be already determined in a sense (Mikio is looking back at memories that already happened), but this isn't to say his future became set in stone the moment he picked up the spear. Either way, he would have no way of knowing what 'fate' he's fighting.
And who is to say that it was Tayasumi's 'fate' was to die in that village with everyone else? Because he was a human and humans are killed by youkai? If we're looking at humans and youkai as defined in terms of violence, Tayasumi stopped being a human when he offered Rumia part of his kill. This action--very uncharacteristic of prey--started the sequence of events that had him singled out at the slaughter and that catalyzed his transformation.
Another question is, why was Tayasumi was allowed to rise and take revenge while everyone else took a dirt nap? Surely there were other candidates in the village for Headgames, people who had suffered horribly before they died, who had never shown any gratitude toward youkai, who had more ambition, more regrets, just as much to live for. It took a god to notice the fell changes that were at work inside Hoshuu that eventually sent him packing, so I don't think it's reaching to imagine that Tayasumi hadn't been entirely human already and just didn't know it.
As for why its Tayasumi in specific? My best bet is the spear. The spear acts as a conduit for Headgames. Immediately upon grasping the spear and calling for help, we were beset with Headgames. Immediately upon losing the spear, it is gone, disregarding one set instance where it cried out for us not to leave him," we haven't heard from it since. I think anyone would have done for Headgames' purpose, Tayasumi was simply the first one to come along, so to say.
>>18504 Ghosts? Like who? Mima? Demon. Youmu and Youki? Half. And if that's true, then why no one in the village turned into a ghost?
>Regret only comes with a recognition of loss, and by the time he has the presence of mind for that, he'll also have become able to appreciate what he's capable of protecting still. I think I'm too dumb to realize your point here. >As Mikio surmised in >>17409, losing your humanity isn't a big deal if you're surrounded by the people you love. Like I said, Mikio turned out lucky because it seems that turning into an avatar of vengeance is reversible. >Yes, that's true. It's in the nature of humans to be killed by youkai, youkai being defined as monsters that eat humans. You could also say that it's in the nature of rape victims to be raped by rapists. No. One thing is the food chain, another is human's perversion. They're unrelated. >And who is to say that it was Tayasumi's 'fate' was to die in that village with everyone else? Because he was a human and humans are killed by youkai? No. His destiniy was to die because he was already dead At least, until headgames decided to use him in order to have a (shared) body. >Another question is, why was Tayasumi was allowed to rise and take revenge while everyone else took a dirt nap? Surely there were other candidates in the village for Headgames, people who had suffered horribly before they died, who had never shown any gratitude toward youkai, who had more ambition, more regrets You're assuming things. I can respond by doing the same, but with the added information that it was his fault that Rumia attacked that day (she would have done so anyway, I suppose) and he knew it. That guilt is something that no one else had.
Well I guess that covers all up. Without these assumptions, the rest of the argument falls apart.
...You’ve already promised this girl, as well as yourself, that you would protect her. To abandon her during the middle of the night would be beyond careless. Although you don’t like it, you’ll just have to take the girl further in with you now. But, why is it that you feel so anxious right now? You’ve never known fear for yourself. No matter who the enemy, or how many of them there are, you’ve always charged in without hesitation. So, why is it that frightens you?
Briefly, your eyes wander to those of the child, meeting her gaze for just an instant. Is it because of her? Because of your promise to this girl? This is... the first time that you will fight to protect someone on a personal level. Is that why you’re feeling such pathetic emotions right now? These detestable feelings of anxiety and hesitation... is she the source of them?
A sudden image of a girl being assaulted flashes across your eyes, assailed viciously by a figure of a similarly sized frame, blood spraying out from her body as sharp claws mercilessly tear across her waist. You wince, shaking your head as you try to clear the image from your mind, narrowing your eyes. You feel a tug on your clothes, and look down to see the child, looking concerned.
“Are you okay?” she asks in a small voice.
“...I’m fine,” you say is a rasp of a voice, turning your attention forward. “Let’s keep going. You don’t need to be afraid. You’ll be safe.”
She nods, but doesn’t release her grip on your sleeve while you start forward, following closely at your side as you walk deeper into the forest. The sun continues to set over the mountains to the west, and it’s gradually growing darker and darker, though the sky hasn’t plunged into total darkness yet. Your body stiffens, however, as you hear the rustling of grass not matching your own footsteps. You stop, keenly focusing your ears. The rustling continues, and grows louder. You turn your head toward it, your fingers instinctively curling in, as though you were brandishing claws.
“...Really, following me all the way out here.”
Your body relaxes. It’s a familiar voice. Of course it would be, since it belongs to the woman you’ve been living with for close to a month now. Kiyone makes her entrance from behind a gathering of trees, running a hand through her hair as she approaches you and her child. The latter, relieved to see her mother, lets go of your sleeve, running forward with a cry of happiness. The woman accepts the girl with open arms, lifting her up and carrying her.
“Didn’t I tell you to watch him?” she says in a stern voice, wagging a finger in front of her daughter’s face while carrying her on one arm.
“Um, um...” the girl stammers, cringing.
“I made her come with me,” you step forward to say. “That girl has no responsibility.”
“You’re defending her?” Kiyone says with a look of surprised, turning her attention to you. She seems pleasantly bemused, a faint smile on her face as she takes a few steps toward you. Her smile eventually fades away, and a stricter expression returns as she speaks to you again, “...So? Why exactly did you want to follow me?”
“I wanted to confirm something,” you say.
“Confirm something, huh...?” she says, looking thoughtful as she looks over you. She remains silent for a few moments, almost as if she’s debating with herself on something. Finally, apparently having made up her mind, she lets out a sigh, “...Alright, I suppose I can’t hide it any longer: what you’re thinking is most likely correct. But, before you make a decision based on that knowledge, I want you to come with me for a bit.”
You look at her broodingly, your lips turning to a scowl. Your eyes wander over to that of the child’s, still in her mother’s arms. She looks frightened of your expression. You look back over to the woman, then, slowly, you nod. She returns the look with a smile, and then turns around.
She begins walking deeper into the forest, and you follow after her once again. Trudging through the grass, you stare at the woman’s back, close behind her. Her hair swishes back and forth as she walks, as does that of the child she’s carrying. If, your assumption of her is true, what will you do then? What can you do? What should you do? That’s all that’s running through your mind right now as your dull, heavy feet continue to lift themselves up and down.
The woman leads you to a clearing. A small river runs down the middle of it, splitting the forest in two. She stops and then, slowly, she places the child down on the ground. The girl looks up at her mother curiously as she crouches down to bring herself to eyelevel with her. She mutters a few words, and the next moment, the child’s eyes slowly droop down, and she begins falling back. Kiyone catches her before she falls, and then carries her to a nearby tree, setting her down against it. She returns, and faces you.
“Everyone, go ahead and come on out,” she says.
It wasn’t addressed to you.
You hear movement all around you, and you turn your head in a snap. In the area around you, various animals have begun gathering around the river. Mixed in with them are humans of differing genders and statures, all looking slightly fearfully at you, staying huddled close together. Some of them are angling their heads and leaning forward, as if to get a better look at you, gawking at you curiously, like you’re some kind of an animal on exhibit.
“What is this?” you ask.
“You must already know,” Kiyone answers quietly. “...We’re outcasts, all of us. The ones who have to hide their identities just to be able to lead a normal life, with only one day a month, when we can truly be ourselves.”
She raises a hand, and points up to the sky. You follow her finger up, looking at the dark curtain overhead. Illuminating the world among many smaller lights, you see the full moon. The sun has now set. The night has come. And, in the light of the full moon, those with the nature of the night begin to awaken. Slowly, you lower your head, and look straight, at where the woman once stood.
She has changed. A thick, furry tail rests on the ground between her legs, her once clear eyes have turned a deeper color, and a pair of horns, firm and proud, are jutting out the sides of her head. She looks at you with a blank expression, standing there across from you, with a gaze that seems almost like a challenge. You look about you, and see that she’s not the only one to have changed; those who were of human appearance have grown the traits of animals: claws, pronounced fangs, long ears; they have become half-beasts.
“It’s an interesting dilemma for you, isn’t it?” she asks, crossing her arms together. “You are a being who exists to kill youkai, and protect humans. At least, that’s what you called yourself. So, youkai-slaying god, here’s a question I’ve long wanted the answer to: what will you do to us? We are human, and we are youkai. Will you kill us? Or will you protect us? What will it be?”
>be able to lead a normal life, with only one day a month, when we can truly be ourselves. >truly be ourselves. >ourselves
I was all prepared to let them live, because they are far more human than youkai. But this single sentence disproves that. Kiyone, and presumably the others, self-identify as youkai. The rest of their monthly life is the lie that they tell to fit into society. They self-identify as youkai, and they will die as youkai.
>>18536 Kiyone isn't a stupid woman. Had she meant that, she would have said it.
The outcasts identify themselves as youkai, so they are youkai. Since they cannot join their chosen community, they use trickery and lies to infiltrate the human village, covertly inhabiting with the "lesser" beings. To so callously play with the humans like that, to pretend to be one of them, to fool everyone about your very identity...it's truly the worst.
These things aren't human, they admit as such. They aren't true youkai, or they wouldn't bother with this farce. They're simply scum; a negative impact upon the human-youkai cohabitation that Gensokyo strives for. They should all die.
>A sudden image of a girl being assaulted flashes across your eyes, assailed viciously by a figure of a similarly sized frame, blood spraying out from her body as sharp claws mercilessly tear across her waist.
Like his little sister was. The memories are coming back to him.
>We are human, and we are youkai. Will you kill us? Or will you protect us?
[x] Kill half of them
But seriously, they call themselves half-beasts, but they're like this only one night out of thirty and seem otherwise to integrate themselves pretty well, most of them probably productive members of the village. They should be probably be observed, which is what Tayasumi has been doing already, but I have to imagine these guys should be pretty low on his shit-list. He doesn't necessarily need to feel he needs to 'protect' them in order to see they're probably important for the survival of the greater human population.
The outcome of the other option seems pretty predictable. He attacks them, dies, and his death is reported to the other humans as self-defense. Because no one knows their secret, Tayasumi then goes down in history as that youkai slaying god who went insane and started attacking humans.
>>18539 My apologies, I do come off a bit overzealous on second glance.
They truly are that bad, though. They spend the majority of their life among humans, as humans; and they still believe themselves to be youkai simply because they transform once a month? To betray the regular humans in such a manner, to lie to everyone like that...its just terrible. At the very least, they don't deserve Tayasumi's protection, as they aren't human. Whether he should kill them or not is still up for debate.
>>18541 >They truly are that bad, though. They spend the majority of their life among humans, as humans; and they still believe themselves to be youkai simply because they transform once a month?
They consider themselves to be youkai in the progressive sense of 'not entirely human' that Gensokyo will come to adopt as the working definition. This is opposed to the old 'creatures who prey on human suffering' definition that beings like Rumia fit into and toward whom Tayasumi holds a great amount of antipathy.
>To betray the regular humans in such a manner, to lie to everyone like that...its just terrible.
They're concerned for their own survival because they're afraid of what many less open-minded humans might do if they found out. There's nothing parasitic about it. Now, if they can convince Tayasumi that they're not a threat, they have a chance of doing so to the other humans who also think in terms of extreme black & white, and as a result future generations like Keine may finally be able to live among them openly.
>>18538 >Had she meant that, she would have said it.
But she did. She just said they can be themselves, without having to lie to anyone about what they are, without having to hide themselves. The only moment when they don't have to worry about being killed by those they decided to love and live amongst.
>“...We’re outcasts, all of us. The ones who have to hide their identities just to be able to lead a normal life, with only one day a month, when we can truly be ourselves.”
They identify themselves as humans, humans who have to hide their curse so they can live as normal humans.
Also, what happened to you for you to be so sour about something like this?
You know, it seems to me that all of the Tayasumi choices end up bogging down to whether or not we want him to become more 'human' or not, and I can't help but think that it's kinda pointless since we've confirmed again and again that the majority wants him to regain his humanity. So unless this is the equivalent of a DM in an rpg saying 'Are you REALLY REALLY sure you want to do that?', it's kind of a waste of voting time. My two cents.
by saying "ourselves" they're referring to the middle, a mix of both but not quite either of them. I doubt Youkai would be that quick to accept them and they fear humans wouldn't either.
Things may be simple if they're black or white, but toss in Gray and its various shades and things aren't so simple, like he's finding out now. He's dealing with people that are neither perfectly human (white) or perfectly savage youkai (black).
>>18547 My feelings exactly. But I trust that Lion has something in mind with these choices. Something other than road bumps to buy some time, that is.
>The outcome of the other option seems pretty predictable. He attacks them, dies, and his death is reported to the other humans as self-defense. Because no one knows their secret, Tayasumi then goes down in history as that youkai slaying god who went insane and started attacking humans. That sounds accurate... and incredibly lame. Let's not.
[x] ... I choose this believing it means we will observe and react to their actions towards us, be they hostile or merely spiteful. After all we did kill a large number of their kind. That being said though how strong is the impulse to kill youkai in him, is it an over-powering compulsion or merely a strong desire?
Also Lion I would like you to know that I am following this story through all the twists and turns and enjoying every second of it. Keep up the good work.
>>18544 >not entirely human A youkai is a youkai. Whether they pretend to be benevolent is irrelevant. They aren't human, and they don't belong in the humans society.
>They're concerned for their own survival That's too bad. If they wish to live as half-breed youkai ilk, they can go form their own damned village. As long as they refer to themselves as youkai, they do not belong with the humans.
>>18545 >But she did...They identify themselves as humans She specifically said they are themselves when they are in their youkai form. We can infer from this that they do not identify themselves as human. If they are hiding their true selves from the real humans they love so much, than they do not deserve to be part of the contemporary Gensokyo of the future.
The Outcasts hide their very being from everyone they meet. They lie to all who love them, merely to fit in and have a place to stay. They live shameful dual lives, living in fear of being found out, since they are too weak to face the consequences of their actions. If they lack even the courage and conviction to tell their own progeny about themselves, they deserve nothing but scorn.
>hey truly are that bad, though. They spend the majority of their life among straights, as straights; and they still believe themselves to be gay? To betray the regular straights in such a manner, to lie to everyone like that...its just terrible.
>>18555 It's not racism. If it comes off as such, it's because I have failed to properly convey my point.
Kiyone and the others are half-human, and half-youkai. They are free to choose which of those two they identify themselves as. They chose to betray their humanity, and identify themselves as youkai. In my mind, this is worse than what any real youkai could do. To betray their humanity, to live as a youkai surrounded by humans, to lie to them all...they are scum, plain and simple.
>Keine Keine is a pure, beautiful human girl who deserves better than her deceitful bum of a mother.
>>18556 I don't know what to say to you. To compare humanity and flesh-eating abominations to heterosexual and homosexual... Lets just say your point is not made. Not in the slightest.
>>18561 >>18559 Ehh. Fair enough, my second grade spelling level is a real issue.
And I was confusing past FoM Keine with present day canon Keine.
I think you are treating there self identification as Youkai as waaaaay more meaningful then it is. What word they use to describe them selves matters way less then what they would do if they caught someone being eaten. I would say all the evidence we have indicates that they would kill the monster where it stood.
I believe that there identifying as Youkai is not really a choice on there part, but rather them just recognizing a fact, that if the normal humans knew about them, they would be killed.
Also youkai are not as homogeneous as you say, yes most love eating humans, and need to be brought down as murderers, but not all. Kogasa would rather surprise then eat, Tewi would rather trick.
>>18562 >would say all the evidence we have indicates that they would kill the monster where it stood.
What evidence is this?
An alternative view point of Kiyone's actions is that, as a youkai, she wishes to change the 'Youkai Slaying God' for her own benefit and not for his.
Actually all her work towards helping him regain his humanity has now been erased. A human telling him to change his views on youkai is one thing, whilst a youkai telling him that killing youkai is bad is another.
>>18554 >A youkai is a youkai. Whether they pretend to be benevolent is irrelevant. They aren't human, and they don't belong in the humans society.
Word for word, rarely ever have I seen strawmen compounded together so dutifully into the same truthy-sounding paragraph. Bravo.
>That's too bad. If they wish to live as half-breed youkai ilk, they can go form their own damned village. As long as they refer to themselves as youkai, they do not belong with the humans.
Because people totally don't need to work together in order to survive. For example, being splintered off into a smaller settlement worked out totally fine for Tayasumi's village. Kiyone should just back up her bags, along with any number of other people on whom the village is critically dependent upon for prosperity and also just happen to be lycanthropes. I'm sure that when evil youkai ramp up their attacks on the area, the victims will feel much more at ease when they're being disemboweled, because at they won't be owing anything to those filthy werecows.
You know, I know you probably don't really live in a magically bounded plane like Gensokyo, but your way of thinking certainly qualifies as magical.
>>18565 >Bravo Why thank you. It positively brings me to a point of rapture when people ignore any points I make, and instead throw out meaningless statements like yours. I really must thank you again, that kind of drivel really brightens my day.
>civilization I assume lycanthropes make up a small portion of any given village. Thus, their loss would have little negative impact upon a villages productivity. Its a moot point, anyways, as humans are numerous and capable, and would swiftly fill in any blanks that their departure creates.
>Evil youkai attacks Hold your horses. Humans aren't defenseless cattle waiting for slaughter. A properly trained human with spiritual powers is easily capable of dispatching the youkai rabble. The only reason it has gone badly in the past is because ludicrously strong youkai attacked relatively defenseless villages.
>>18564 >An alternative view point of Kiyone's actions is that, as a youkai, she wishes to change the 'Youkai Slaying God' for her own benefit and not for his.
There were more than a few episodes where Kiyone put herself perilously close to death in order to keep him around. I think most probably assume she's probably acting in the capacity of the same genuinely benevolent and dutiful protector of humans that her daughter grows into. In my more suspicious moods, I've thought she could be genuinely infatuated, or she could some kind of savior complex, or maybe she could be making an investment toward her daughter's safety (in which case, just as keikaku). But if you're implying she's trying to work over some crazy werecow juju on him, I'd say that given the risks she's incurred to do so, she is at the least being comically irresponsible with her own life.
As for Tayasumi's health, surely as awesome as it is to be labeled a 'youkai slaying god' the overwhelming trend of voting suggests surely there is some room for improvement. I hardly think learning how to read & write is going to turn out to be a diabolical Achilles heel for our hero.
>Actually all her work towards helping him regain his humanity has now been erased. A human telling him to change his views on youkai is one thing, whilst a youkai telling him that killing youkai is bad is another.
I think you've misread all those [x] ... votes as [x] Back 52 choices. Now if indeed in the next update Tayasumi screams in protest over being lied to and leaps into the forest never to be heard from again, then all the progress has is for nothing, and I'll eat my silly hat. Otherwise, I'll count this as another notch on Kiyone's life lesson plan for Tayasumi, namely here that some words, like 'youkai', mean different things to different people and to not get too hung up over semantics, as you have.
>>18566 >I assume lycanthropes make up a small portion of any given village. Thus, their loss would have little negative impact upon a villages productivity. Its a moot point, anyways, as humans are numerous and capable, and would swiftly fill in any blanks that their departure creates.
An isolated mountain village before the establishment of the border in late 19th Japan was barely subsisting. In the real world, drought, a single bad harvest, or pestilence would be capable of making the entire settlement unviable. These people have to deal with that shit and monster attacks. It might be okay if all of those those half-youkai were farmers, but if one of them was the village doctor, or one of many artisans that a small village can only afford one of. Since professions are hereditary and operated within single families, they'll be taking along with everyone with knowledge in that field.
>Hold your horses. Humans aren't defenseless cattle waiting for slaughter.
In front of beings like Rumia they sure fucking seem to be.
>A properly trained human with spiritual powers is easily capable of dispatching the youkai rabble.
According to Akyu. In modern day. But as we've seen, things were somewhat more perilous for humans back then.
>The only reason it has gone badly in the past is because ludicrously strong youkai attacked relatively defenseless villages.
The reason it's gone badly in the past is the lack of spellcard rules. As far as beings like Rumia being exceptions, maybe, but we've seen no evidence of the exceptional humans that might repel them in this time setting. The strongest evidence of was Tayasumi's brother, who was capable of dispatching all the 'weak' youkai that attacked the village, but Rumia still dispatched him handily. Kiyone was capable of dissuading Ogata, former soujoubou of the tengu, from continuing his assault on Tayasumi. Likely with a defender like that, others are simply unnecessary.
>>18568 >An isolated mountain village before the establishment of the border in late 19th Japan was barely subsisting.
This village is a conglomerate of multiple communities subsiding and living together. It's safe to say they are a little more well off than the average.
>It might be okay if all of those half-youkai were farmers, but if one of them was the village doctor, or one of many artisans that a small village can only afford one of
We have little indication of the number of outcasts, and no knowledge of what they do in the village proper. It's a fair assumption that they can be replaced by an appropriate human.
>In front of beings like Rumia they sure fucking seem to be.
Most people, youkai or no, would be cattle to Ex-Rumia. As one of the strongest youkai, she definitely is an exception.
>According to Akyu. In modern times
Bullshit. Tayasumi, before his death and rebirth, was capable of killing weaker youkai, and he was an untrained peasant. Furthermore, the wagon that Nameless defended from youkai originally contracted humans to defend itself. Humans are capable of defending themselves against youkai with ease.
>beings like Rumia being exceptions, maybe, but we've seen no evidence of the exceptional humans that might repel them in this time setting.
I don't recall his name off the top of my head, but the guy who trained Tayasumi's brother was said to be an excellent youkai exterminator in his youth. Granted, we never saw him do anything, so we have no clear indication of whether he would be able to fend off an exceptionally strong youkai like Rumia, but to indicate that no human can fend off a youkai of her caliber is just ludicrous.
>Likely with a defender like Kiyone, others are simply unnecessary.
The only time we have seen Kiyone fight youkai was against three weak punks. To say she is somehow more proficient than a human could be, solely because Ogata decided to listen to her on a whim...its lunacy.
>>18569 >To say she is somehow more proficient than a human could be, solely because Ogata decided to listen to her on a whim...its lunacy
Regardless, he did stop because of her, even if they didn't fight.
>It might be okay if all of those half-youkai were farmers, but if one of them was the village doctor, or one of many artisans that a small village can only afford one of
We have little indication of the number of outcasts, and no knowledge of what they do in the village proper. It's a fair assumption that they can't be replaced by an appropriate human.
See how easy this one was? That's because you are working with shit you don't know, so anyone can make up anything.
Also, at the beggining I thought you were being serious, but after a few posts, I realised you are just a troll. Are you the same guy who "was tired of humanizing Nameless/Tayasumi" and wanted to get him back to the mindless killing?
In this case, killing youkai means killing humans, including the mother of the girl he wants to protect. Maybe Headgames would be happy with that, but Tayasumi wouldn't. That isn't why he went along with this.
Anyway, what's with the animals that showed up? Did they transform? Are they just friends of the half-beasts?
What if humans killed the outcast's families? >Like, say, just for example, the hypothetical lycanthropes who hold "critically" important roles in the village?
Exactly. However, we know that at least one lycanthrope holds a very important role, one without which could mean the total obliteration of the village. Kiyone, the village's protector and guardian. >"He disagrees with me. He must be a troll"
Not really. You having a different opinion is fine with me, it's just the way you try to justify it.
Had you voted to kill them without a single comment, or had you said something like, "I just fell like it", or "I think this can bring something better than the other option", wouldn't have started this discussion.
>But of course. I imagine you will summarily ignore any posts I make from now on as bad trolling, so it's safe to say we're done here.
Don't worry sometimes I will bite, even though I konw you are just trolling.
>>18576 >one without which could mean the total obliteration of the village
Ahh, so you conveniently ignore any and all examples of humans who can defend the village just as expertly, than take it further to extrapolate that all lycanthropes must be important to the villages continued survival. Here, let me draw your attention to some stupid shit you said that applies double for you.
"That's because you are working with shit you don't know, so anyone can make up anything."
>just the way you try to justify it
You than say my position would be understandable if I had the utterly moronic justification of "I fell like it."
No matter how badly you disagree with me, any sort of banter between us is infinitely better than the hordes of people who vote merely because, as you say, they "fell" like it.
Kiyone isn't an important member of the village. She definitely isn't "critical" to its continued survival. A properly trained human can defend the village just as effectively as her. To take it further and speculate that the flourishing village would collapse upon the removal of a small band of misfits is laughable.
>>18577 >You then say my position would be understandable if I had the utterly moronic justification of "I fell like it."
Not necessarily understandable, but certainly less revolting.
>any and all examples of humans who can defend the village just as expertly >Kiyone isn't an important member of the village. >She definitely isn't "critical" to its continued survival. A properly trained human can defend the village just as effectively as her.
Ok, name one who can replace someone like Kiyone, who has the powers of a hakutaku and can control history at least once a month, someone who can make it look to everyone else that something never happened, and hide and protect entire settlements with that.
You can't, because we are working with shit we don't know, so anyone can make up anything.
But that's ok, because that's not what's important. What we should be talking about is not about the village's well being or something like that, it's about Kiyone and Nameless' future (yes, I am aware I participated in the derailment).
Tell me, what evil deed has Kiyone done so far that makes her deserving of death? Until now she has only done things we consider to be good, just, and human. Why do you want to kill her just because she has hiden her curse from others? Shouldn't someone's actions weight more in this situation? She protects the village she resides in, she thinks about the villages current state and wishes to improve it (throught the school she wants to make), doesn't allow violence and didn't let anyone kill anyone, she has loved a human and was loved in return and now is raising a human child, and is giving Nameless' a second chance to recover his humanity. Forget the other lycanthropes, just tell me, why do you want to kill Kiyone that much?
>>18578 >certainly less revolting Lets not get into that debate right now; we are discussing other things. Whether or not it is moral, or "right" to kill monsters that appear human isn't important right now.
>Name people...You can't I most certainly can name people with enough power to defend the village from youkai attacks. Hint: Their surnames are Hakurei. Even ignoring this clan of professional youkai exterminators, there are plenty of nameless humans with power up to the task. Granted, I cannot name another with hakutaku mojo, because that is character specific, but it should be clear by now that it doesn't matter.
>why do you want to kill Kiyone that much I have no particular wish to kill her in specific. I wish to kill them all. I've outlined this before. Tayasumi cannot live without killing them, so I want them to die. I don't wish death on Kiyone, or even any of the other outcasts, but for this choice, I have too. Lion isn't very big on the write-in stick, and the choices seemingly amount to kill them, or not. So they must die.
You seem to place Kiyone on a higher pedestal than she deserves. Tell me, just why do you like her so much? Her actions are decided with cold, indifferent calculation. She is a lazy slob motivated by greed (via the school she wants to make). She considers herself a monster, different than the humans she professes to love so much. She lies to her loved ones, and manipulates them into following her will. Her actions place her as a terrible being, youkai or no. How could you like a meddling woman such as her?
>What we should be talking about is Kiyone and Nameless' future
There is none. Tayasumi will die if he continues to listen to her. Without killing youkai, Tayasumi will grow weaker and have his personality (what little of it there is), supplanted by Headgames. Headgames explicitly said this.
Tell me, why is it so damn important that they all die? They're not killing humans by night or sabotaging the village; they hide themselves because they want to be left the hell alone.
I dunno if you've got some bloodlust thing going on or whatever, but from the perspective of someone who'd rather Tayasumi overcome his issues, your "the voice says all youkai are pigs and the voice is always right" argument is mystifying.
>>18580 >Tell me, why is it so damn important that they all die? So that Tayasumi will live.
>Tayasumi overcome his issues I don't think there is a single person reading this story that doesn't want Tayasumi to live happily. However, I don't believe they are going about it the right way. Killing all youkai is starting to become unfeasible for a myriad of reasons, however, he needs to kill to live. Our true dilemma lies in finding a satisfying middle ground. We need to find some way he can live without killing, but that seems impossible at this moment. Following Kiyones advice is definitely not the optimal path though.
>"the voice says all youkai are pigs and the voice is always right" Concerning the power he grants to Tayasumi, he is certainly always right. He has nothing to gain by lying to him. If he says that killing youkai will prevent Tayasumi from dying, again, than that's exactly how it is.
>>18579 >Her actions are decided with cold, indifferent calculation.
Did you mean Nameless? Because he's the only one who actually fits that description, Kiyone has shown she actually has a heart. >She is a lazy slob motivated by greed (via the school she wants to make).
She is a single mother, loves her child and wants to give her a confortable life. Which loving parent wouldn't want a confortable life for their children?
Also, lazy slob motivated by greed. Isn't there a certain hakurei who actually fits that description? >She considers herself a monster, different than the humans she professes to love so much.
We've talked about this before. >She lies to her loved ones, and manipulates them into following her will.
Well, kinda hard to talk about that when we only know one person close to her (Keine). But you need to think about something: Keine is still a young child, and has much to learn and to mature. Some things you don't tell to young children, you wait for them to grow up a bit, and wait for them to be ready. In this case, Kiyone is probably protecting Keine, or the mother and daughter relatonship they have. What would Keine do if she knew her mother is cursed and is a half-hakutaku? Would she accept it? Would she spread the news, tell other children how awesome her mother is? Or would she reject Kiyone and distance herself from her own mother? >Her actions place her as a terrible being, youkai or no.
Well, I still say she has more good deeds in her favor. >How could you like a meddling woman such as her?
You sound like Headgames. Let Tayasumi go, you monster!
>>18581 >Our true dilemma lies in finding a satisfying middle ground. We need to find some way he can live without killing, but that seems impossible at this moment.
You sure don't sound like someone who wants a middle ground. Headgames may have said Tayasumi needs to kill to survive, but is that true? What if Headgames lied, what if does have something to gain by lying? We know too little about it. >Following Kiyones advice is definitely not the optimal path though.
What if it is? What if replacing Headgames's power over Tayasumi by giving him his humanity and concience back is the optimal path? In the end, Headgames is surpressed, and Tayasumi has returned to his self inside Mikio's "worlds".
>You sound like Headgames. Let Tayasumi go, you monster! Hysterical, truly. Anyways, I was just being a facetious ass with the whole Kiyone bit, and was a little too slow in deciding to edit it out. I am definitely not going to seriously argue that she is as bad as that, though the evidence is there.
>Tayasumi needs to kill to survive, but is that true? All signs point to yes. Though it hasn't been mentioned for a long time, Tayasumi feels an all-encompassing hunger when he doesn't kill youkai, and his body starts to unravel without "sustenance". We haven't heard mention of it for some time, but that is troubling in and of itself. See >>13550 and >>13572
>What if it is? What if replacing Headgames's power over Tayasumi by giving him his humanity and concience back is the optimal path? If only it could be that easy! There would be no conflict if we could just simply wish Headgames away with positive thought. Unfortunately, reality is a bit more unkind than that, and we should not gamble his life on the hypothetical. No, unless we wish Tayasumi to die again, Headgames is here to stay, and we need to find a medium between his desires and ours. It's not all that different from Mikio, looking at it in that perspective.
> There would be no conflict if we could just simply wish Headgames away with positive thought.
I think you need to re-read this story. There has been lots of conflict that, at the end, boiled down to "wishing Headgames away" and it has seemed to work, somewhat.
Personally we seem to basically be a Youkai of Youkai, we do exist to kill Youkai, but maybe we should try for more then living, I bet we can transform ourselves, not by denying what we are, but by changing what we are.
[x] "I will eradicate you all... after I've killed off each and every one of the real youkai. Something tells me that's going to take a while." [x] "Until then" hoist up the sleeping Keine "I won't allow this child to wake this day without a mother." Head back to the village.
No need to make such a heavy decision now.
Besides, this has more personality, which something we want. He's showing he can move on, but not without begrudgingly trying to make an excuse for himself.
[x] "I will eradicate you all... after I've killed off each and every one of the real youkai. Something tells me that's going to take a while." [x] "Until then" hoist up the sleeping Keine "I won't allow this child to wake this day without a mother." Head back to the village.
>>18598 It's a bit out of character, but the idea behind it isn't, we don't WANT to kill her, but we want to kill youkai so we come up with something that accomplishes both... or atleast postpones the decision
Personally i think the "..." option can be interpreted in that way as well: staying silent isn't a promise to not do anything at some point in the future. It merely means that we're still considering the options.
>>18613 So you want a bad end? I'm pretty sure Tayasumi's story here is one where he must think about his life and if he'll be that way until his death. We know the story on the human monster... but can we really forget the old man we saw in our mind? Was he such a monster then?
>>18652 Seems more like the ones who vote for kill are butthurt and just general idiots. I would point out examples but it should be pretty obvious from reading their comments or their votes spamming because they lack reason and conviction to their their voice through.
I can see what you mean when you say they have a lack of reasoning, but they arn't really butthurt about anything. Best reasoning I've saw that wasn't bullshit was just for the sake of not being anti-climatic and wanting a dramatic ending. On top of that, if anyone's butthurt, it's the people against killing them, including me.
Aside from that, I don't think any of them are vote-spamming, nor are they general idoits.
Every fiber of your being is screaming to spring forward and attack. Begging for you to rip your hand through the woman’s throat and tear it open in a single flash. After all, isn’t that why you came here in the first place? Isn’t this just exactly what you wanted to confirm? You were preparing yourself for this, and right now, you shouldn’t be able to resist the urge to just kill them all where they stand, here and now, with your own bare hands if need be.
Yes, that’s right. You should just stop thinking about it and just let your body take you where it goes. It’s impossible, after all, for you to be happy. You just need to devote yourself to your continued existence. No matter what, you have to survive. And if that means to kill your own sense of self and become mindless, unaware of neither gain nor loss, then that’s what’s best for you. All you need to do is survive. Survive. Live. Continue to exist, no matter what. Because you don’t want to die.
Your feet start carrying you forward, closer toward the horned woman standing in front of you. The half-beasts gathered all around the two of you seem to tense up, watching you cautiously as you move forward. Their caution turns to hostility as you begin raising your hand, still gripped like a claw as you begin to lift it up to strike. But, you’re not paying attention to them. Your attention is focused on the woman before you.
She stands defiantly, her arms crossed in front of her chest. Her body’s tense, but she makes no movements to attack or run away. Her expression remains stern and unflinching. Why is it that she remains in front of you like this? Why won’t she be afraid of you? Why won’t she try to kill you? Is it... because she’s expecting something from you? Is it because she’s hoping against hope that perhaps you would... Ridiculous. Stupid. She’s stupid. She’s a stupid, meddling, annoying woman. She always was. Always so stupid.
Still. Still, still, still. Still, you can’t seem to bring your hand down. You weren’t able to do it before, and you aren’t able to do it now? Why is that...? Is it already too late to sever ties with her? Have you... already fallen into her trap? No, no, no, you can’t be bent so easily like that. But you already gave up, didn’t you? You already promised that you would...
You freeze as Kiyone reaches out her hand toward you. Her fingers wrap themselves around your palm, the slender digits transferring the warmth of her body to your cold, stiff skin. You want to back away, to rip your hand out of her grip immediately, but your feet remain planted on the ground, and you offer no resistance as she gently lowers your hand back down.
“You can’t pretend to feel nothing anymore,” she says, her tense body beginning to relax as a small little smile finds its way to her lips, her hand still gripping yours. “That’s no way to live, right?”
“I...” you mutter out, slowly turning your head to look all around yourself. “Are they all...?”
“That’s right,” she says, taking your hand in hers as she moves to your side. “...We’re all burdened by this curse, whether it was something that plagued us from birth, or acquired later in life, we have lived neither fully human nor fully youkai.”
“By our nature, we are considered unwelcome,” Kiyone continues to speak, her face tinged with a hint of sorrow even as she continues to smile. “Always caught in-between the hatred and the warring between youkai and humans. The former scorn us and the latter fear us and hate us. None of us have asked for this kind of life, born to suffer for what we are, but we haven’t given up on it. We continue to live, bearing the weight of this curse, and we attempt to create a kind of happiness for ourselves.”
“You are deceiving them all,” you say harshly.
“It’s not as though we do it because we want to. It’s just something that can’t be helped,” she says in return, shaking her head sadly, her downcast expression illuminated by the pale light of the full moon. “It’s true that we live hiding these forms even from our friends and family, but we don’t have a choice. Without doing that, all these people who have done nothing wrong would be shunned and driven out without a choice.”
...Treated as a pariah for something you can’t help...
“...And that’s why we gather here,” she continues to speak, letting out a sigh. “Once a month -- just one day each month -- we are free. We gather here, so that we may live a day around people we have nothing to hide from, around those we don’t have to deceive.”
A day when they are set free from the burden they carry every other day...
“I hope that one day... we will no longer need to hide ourselves. I hope that the day will come when the people of the village might be able to accept us, even if we are different from them. But that day is not today, and so we hide, and deceive, and wait for that day.”
She squeezes your hand.
“...You understand, right?”
These people, no matter what their origin may be, whether they were born like this, or had this curse placed on them... none of them chose to be that way. And yet, they continue to live. They live, bearing that curse, and though they may suffer, they continue to hold faith that someday, things will become better. They believe that their life won’t be dark eternally, that eventually they will be able to break through the darkness and out into a brighter future. These people have hope.
Slowly, you feel the muscles around your mouth moving involuntarily.
The corners of your mouth lift themselves up, your lips turning up into a faint smile as you look to her, your head nodding up and down just a bit.
Her eyes widen slightly, looking at your visage, but soon, gentleness is in those eyes once again, and she returns the smile. The half-beasts around you begin to relax as she did, some of them sitting down on the earth while others begin talking amongst one another. Kiyone parts her hand from yours, walking back to her child, resting against a tree. She squats down in front of her, and you follow close behind her.
“This child doesn’t know anything,” Kiyone says, reaching out and stroking the girl’s hair. “...Maybe someday, she’ll know. But I hope that won’t happen.”
“...Do you know about the mythical beast, the hakutaku?”
“A wise, benevolent beast that appears before rulers and kings, surfacing only once every few centuries, able to consume or change history, recording the present to turn it into the past, and changing the past to alter the perception of the present,” she says, standing straight again. “...But really, it’s more of a legacy than anything else.”
“That’s right,” Kiyone says, turning around to you. “I’m the current host of the hakutaku’s powers, and there were many hosts before me. Eventually, I will have to pass on this duty to someone else, whether I live to choose my successor or not.”
You look down at the sleeping form of the girl. “And... your successor is...?”
“Probably not her,” she says. “If at all possible, I don’t want her to live with this. But, if something were to happen to me, most likely the hakutaku’s powers will be passed onto her anyway. It’s not something I would wish for her to inherit. It’d be best if she could just live a normal life.”
“A normal life...” you repeat after her. You bend your knees, touching a hand to the girl’s face. “...Yes, that would be best.”
You stand back up, and Kiyone moves to wrap her arms around one of yours, linking them together. She stands beside you, her bushy tail swishing around in the air behind her. She looks up to the sky, the glow of the full moon reflected in her eyes. She stands there, silent, and taking your eyes off her, you follow her gaze and look up to the sky yourself.
“Hey,” she speaks up after a moment. “Don’t you think the full moon looks beautiful?”
You look up at the red glow of the moon, floating in the middle of a dark red sky. No, is it red? The world is losing its red. The leaves all around you have the healthy color of green, so full of life, and the dark sky is no longer the color of blood. The moon, the moon, the moon. The moon is no longer red. The world is no longer red. The pale light glow of the moon. It’s not red anymore. The world has lost its red. The moon... the moon is beautiful.
“...I don’t dislike it.”
You groan as you open your eyes, feeling a hard surface beneath your face. Pushing against that surface with your palms, you lift yourself up off of it, finding yourself staring at the top of a table. Immediately, you feel a sharp pain in your neck, making you wince as you hurriedly touch a hand to the side of it, trying to soothe it with a massage. Your throat feels dry and parched and in need of some water.
Groggily, you stare ahead, greeted by the blue light of the television. Spread on the floor all around you are empty videotape boxes. Sitting on the table next to where your head was resting, you find a bowl of snacks, left half-eaten. Judging by a look out the window, it’s still early morning. Why were you sleeping here? You must have been doing something before you... Ugh, now it all comes back to you. You spent almost the entire previous day marathoning a series together with...
Looking to your side, you find who you were looking for: Sanae’s curled up like a fetus on the floor, not far from where you’re sitting at the table, dressed in a t-shirt and a pair of shorts.
You let out a yawn as you survey the room again. There’re a lot of videotapes just lying around on the floor, and it’s going to be a pain to have to clean it all up by yourself. You shake your head, trying to clear the drowsiness from your head, and scoot yourself over to the still dozing shrine maiden.
[ ] Wake her up. [ ] Pinch her cheek. Blow in her ear. Plug her nose.
>>18666 > The moon is no longer red. The world is no longer red. The pale light glow of the moon. It’s not red anymore. The world has lost its red. The moon... the moon is beautiful. We have lifted the curse for him and put some happiness in her heart. Whatever happens, that will remain.
[x] Pinch her cheek. Blow in her ear. Plug her nose.
[X] Pinch her cheek. Blow in her ear. Plug her nose.
This update melted my heart. But the sad thing is now the shit has to hit the fan horribly for Tayasumi and Kiyone to balance it out, since we all know how the story ends, or at least the aftermath of it.
We are Hoshuu to Sanae, so we're allowed to be playful.
[x] Pinch her cheek. Blow in her ear. Plug her nose.
>>18666 >Keine's mom is going to die. If it was us, it would have been a quick and clean death.
Pushing euthanasia for a woman who has a child to raise and who also genuinely enjoys her life is not going to win you any points. If she has to die, I think her death could be more meaningful than having her throat torn out by someone she tried to show kindness to.
>>18667 If Tayasumi's curse was broken, Hoshuu wouldn't be still dealing with it. Judging Kiyone made Tayasumi push hard against the curse, something that until now he had no reason to do. It's possible he just caught headgames off-guard, and there'll be repercussions for his minor rebellion later down the line. If Tayasumi could make that much progress with a sudden push, couldn't headgames wait a bit, lull him into a false sense of security, and assert his influence up to 11?
We may kill Kiyone yet.
IN OTHER NEWS: [x] Pinch her cheek. Blow in her ear. Plug her nose.
Maybe not broken, but weakened? Hoshuu didn't show any signs for some times, and both him and Tayasumi were trapping Headgames with that two worlds/roads dream sequences we've seen earlier in the story.
>>18676 Happy thoughts may push headgames back, but they haven't stomped him out completely. Tenacity is his strongest trait, one that Tayasumi has borrowed to great effect in the past. The magnitude of his remaining influence at this point is, admittedly, unknown, but there will be a final reckoning before we're rid of him.
>>18686 I don't think his personality works like that. It's not just a switch he can flip at will, suddenly being Honshuu at one moment, and Mikio the other.
There's bound to be some awkwardness after being separated for a large number of years, and literally being a different person in that gap. I just feel it's too soon to be all familiar with her after all that. We need to work back up to that level of intimacy.
>>18688 >It's not just a switch he can flip at will, suddenly being Honshuu at one moment, and Mikio the other. Are you sure? Because it sure seemed like it. Look:
>“Is that really something you should be saying right now!?” you yell back without thinking, in a voice almost completely different from the one that usually belongs to you, lifting a hand and rubbing the cheek where she hit you. “You’re ruining the moment here!”
>You suddenly stop yourself, touching your lips. That slipped out. That completely slipped out.
>There's bound to be some awkwardness after being separated for a large number of years There has been no indication of this whatsoever. From what we've seen, they've gotten along just fine as if he had never left.
>>18693 There honestly hasn't been enough interaction between Mikishuu and others to tell for certain how his personality works. I simply favor the amalgamation theory.
And you don't think there would be some awkward moments after Honshuukio disappears for a large number of years, and lives an entirely different life in the intervening period? I don't know about you or anyone else, but that might be a little weird to experience, on both sides. Just personal opinions here, really.
>>18694 My guess is that the recovery of his memories and their reintegration into his psyche occurred so well that acting as he once did as Hoshuu around Sanae feels normal and comfortable, with a sense of nostalgia added to it I'd wager. He wants to accept that part of him he forgot and reconnecting with those memories by replaying and creating new yet similar ones with Sanae is probably helping things along.
He's also probably emphasizing the Hoshuu aspects of his personality for Sanae herself, to reassure her that he is indeed Hoshuu. That reaction, if only subconscious on his part, would be a sign of how attuned and familiar he is with Sanae due to long term cohabitation and friendship. There will be time later for Sanae to accept the melding of Hoshuu and Mikio into a new man, for now she needs to be fully reassured that Hoshuu has returned to her.
The coming events will be... interesting. Hoshuu/Mikio will need to face his surrogate mother and aunt with the return of his memories, of course. But it is likely that the habitants of the Shrine will discover it first. The goddesses of Moriya (every time I type that name I think of Khazad-dum, of shadow and flame) may have dismissed Sanae's outburst as a drunken delusion and seemed regretful of what happened to Hoshuu, their reaction to the revelation of Hoshuu/Mikio and his memories may not be greeted agreeably. There was a sense of inevitability to their regrets, that nothing could have been done... Can nothing be done for him still, I wonder?