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Goddammit, at last this shit's finished. I'll try to make up for my tardiness during the weekend as I've got nothing better to do anyway.
Anyway, here goes.
[ ] Agree to deliver the message with a few conditions:
-[ ] You will read this letter before delivering it.
-[ ] You will know the sender's name, and her associates (Marisa and Alice can explain further if needed)
-[ ] Based on the sender and the content, you will decide to deliver it right now, later or never.
-[ ]'The trickster is a powerful god, but like most of them, it finds influencing directly into earthly affairs a difficult task. Since it seems that I'm his 'High priest'(heh) and therefore his connection to this realm, I reserve the right to not show it to him if I consider that will be detrimental to me, my friends (Youki in particular) or to the peace of this realm'
You watch the green-haired girl for a moment, seeking for signs that this request is some sort of jest, for strange it is if a son of the north now shall be turned into an errand boy. But she seems serious, even expecting you to agree to this task without objection, so you deem it.
Another strange custom of this realm, perhaps? If so, she shall be taught that there are other paths than those trod by the people of this eastern wonderland, for the honour held in your heart is not one to accept servitude without consent or obligation on your part. Yet even so it would be truly unwise to remain ignorant of the contents of this message, to let the priestess of wind carry it to Laufey's Son and force you to second-guess the intentions of two gods instead of one.
"Aye then, Sanae Sky-Maiden, I shall take this task upon myself," You reply, for despite your prickled pride this knowledge must be yours. The green-haired priestess seems pleased by your answer, handing her scroll to you.
Holding it in your hand you take a few moments to inspect it and find that it is made of paper, though thicker than the sheets you have seen before, and sealed with red wax, the symbol in the sigil one unfamiliar to you. Perhaps it is a picture of waves, or maybe it is supposed to portray the wind, you know not.
"Yet every wise man, one who is well-versed with wily wits, would fain find what he has to deliver, would he not?" You ask of the Wind-Maiden after your quick inspection of the scroll.
"Yes, honoured prophet." The green-haired girl answers, and after a moment of hesitation she speaks again, her tone low, almost conspiratory, as if revealing some embarrassing secret. "To be honest I would like to know the contents of the letter myself, but the honoured Lady Yasaka did not see fit to share them with me."
"Perhaps you shall, noble priestess of winds, for to know what is written within is one of conditions I shall set." You reply, keeping your voice calm, even though you tinge it with a hint of iron.
"What do you mean?" The Wind-Maiden wonders, her voice now slightly confused. Apparently she had not expected such an reply.
"Not for the sons of the north is blind obedience. I shall pass on this letter when I see fit to do so, after I have read it myself." You answer her, meeting her gaze with your own, seeing her eyes narrow as she hears your words.
"You would read Lady Yasaka's letter?" She asks, her voice and expression revealing complete bafflement. It only lasts for a moment, for as with most of the sorceresses of this realm, anger swiftly follows confusion.
"I have never heard such rudeness." Green-haired Sanae growls at you, indignation evident in every fiber of her being, aye, she even manages to look slightly intimidating despite her small frame. She has power, this you can see.
"For politeness there is often a place, Sanae Wind-Maiden, for often does discourtesy bring scathing strife. Yet counted among virtues prudence is greater, and so I will deliver no message unless I deem it wise to trust both its sender and the one who shall it recieve." You reply, meeting her angry gaze with steely eyes, your voice one that brooks no argument, for if she will not agree to these demands she must know that you will not back down either.
"Don't you trust your own god and master?" She incredulously wonders, anger fading slightly, and disbelief now etched into her expression.
"Allfather Odin is my lord, and High One's servant in this song-smith" You diplomatically reply, placing your words with care, for you have no wish to antagonize the green-haired priestess. "Yet the god whose might your lady felt was not Asgard's ruler."
"Who is it, then?" The green-haired girl wonders, her eyes narrowing slightly, her mind obviously trying to puzzle out the identity of the one you have hinted at. How ironic, you deem it, for you to be forced to obscure the name of the trickster god himself.
"Tell this truth, name the nameless would I, yet can this song-smith trust the maiden of wind, she who would know?" You reply, for though your heart tells you this girl is trustworthy, caution still restrains you. Tell her you must, sooner or later, but before that you need to know whether her mistress can be trusted.
"Honour, O Wind-Maiden binds both men and gods, and by word, by debt and by trust that has been given, I would never bring harm or grief to those who I count as fair friends. If you understand this, noble Sanae, then know that this warrior can deliver no message without knowing well what fate it will bring."
"I do understand." Sanae answers, now regarding you with faint curiosity in her eyes.
"Then tell, so that this song-smith can know and trust." You ask of her, your voice firm yet polite. "Tell of your gods, tell of your Lady, the honoured Yasaka Kanako, and of those who would call themselves her honoured friends and thanes, for before a man can trust, he must know."
The Wind-Maiden looks uncomfortable for a moment, she bites her lip as she ponders whether to agree to your request, but finally she relents, perhaps out of personal curiosity, perhaps out of sense of duty to ensure that this message of hers is delivered.
She then spends quite some time telling of her lady, a powerful deity who rules over the rain and winds, a deity who came to this sheltered realm in search for faith to sustain her strength and glory. Along came a goddess of the earth and the mountains, one who claims dominion over Ymir's bones themselves, strange as this might sound.
Her words are full of praise, as one could expect from a priestess so devout. Yet among her eager explanations one fact still shines through as clear as Sól's gaze itself, the ambition and pride of this goddess who is named Yasaka.
Twice has she tried to steer this realm's future where she willed, and though twice thwarted, you can still sense that the goddess of wind still seeks to shape this realm to her liking.
But even as you harbour doubts about the motives of the wind goddess, this only makes it more important for you to know what she wills. And despite the ambitions of her mistress, you feel that the maiden of winds is one you can trust more than most strangers. Ill would it be to leave the trust she has shown you without reward.
"True-spoken words ever bring honour to one who utters, O worthy Wind-Maiden. Secrets should not be shared lightly, not part from one's thought-hoard without cause when wit's fruits could ill fate bring, aye only when bound by honour or when gifted with greater prize should one bear this cost." You tell her, this wisdom that Odin uttered in days of yore.
"And now this song-smith is obliged to repay truth with truth." You continue, though you suspect that this truth may be an unpleasant one for the Wind-Maiden. "And then you shall know the cause for his actions, for the god of frost-filled north your lady's words were sent to is not one to be trusted, not one who wise men turn to lightly."
"I know not if you have heard of him, Wind-Maiden, but he is the blood brother of Allfather Odin, one as far-famed as Asgard's Lord." You calmly tell her, watching her expression change from slight confusion to sudden worry.
"Listen, O noble priestess, for he is Loki Laufey's Son, Loki Trickster God, and Loki Liesmith. Counted they are, these three, among his famed names."
Colour flees from the Wind-Maiden's face as she hears your words, as the reality of the situation dawns on her. Obviously the trickster of Asgard is well known even in this eastern land.
"I understand." She replies, her voice suddenly very soft, perhaps even slightly afraid though she hides it well.
"Lord Sigurd, I thank you for this warning, and I am honoured for the trust you have given me."
"Aye, and I thank you for yours." You reply, offering your hand to the Wind-Maiden. She extends her own, and you clasp her wrist in a warrior's greeting.
"Sanae Wind-Maiden, I ask of you to entrust this task to this song-smith. Wily is the trickster, and great harm has he been known to cause when those unfamiliar with his ways seek to deal with Loki Sky-Walker."
"I will trust you to do what is best." She replies with a slight bow. Then she releases her grip and takes a step back
"In light of this knowledge I shall ask my lady to reconsider, but I fear she will not listen." Sanae then tells you, a soft sigh escaping her lips, her look almost apologetic. "Forgive me, but I must leave immediately."
"May fair fortune follow you wherever you go." You call out as she soars into the sky. Sanae waves to you in reply, then speeds off over the treetops.
Again this realm of Gensokyo has managed to make your life more interesting. Your turn your attention back to the scroll in your hand, for after all you seem to have achieved that what you wished to.
The seal on the letter easily breaks in your hands, and you unfurl the scroll and take a quick look as the strange, elegant runes written on the paper, the script completely unfamiliar to you. But strangely enough, the complex runes suddenly shift on the paper, as if the ink itself suddenly flowed into new forms, yet you can notice no movement.
After this mildly disorienting exprerience, you see only the familiar runes of the north on the paper, though still they seem elaborate somehow. Ignoring this strange sorcery you begin to read the letter penned by the wind goddess.
"We who address Your Excellency bear the honoured name Yasaka Kanako, We are the lady of the sacred wind and mistress of the holy rain. You who are of the divine, know that We hold the virtue and dominion in this realm and know that We welcome all who would appear before Us seeking Our protection and friendship.
We, in our mercy would wish, in Our capacity as Lady and Mistress of all divinity in Gensokyo, to invite Your Excellency to meet Us at the foot of the sacred mountain and to tie the bonds of friendship between Your Excellency and Our Majesty.
So do We declare in Our immortal wisdom, We who are the High Lady of Youkai Mountain, Yasaka Kanako."
With a slightly disbelieving expression you roll the scroll together again. If there still was any doubt about the matter you deem it swept away, for the goddess of wind and rain truly does seem to have a high opinion of herself.
"Wow, that's some arrogance alright -ze." A voice comments from behind you. Turning your head you see that the black-white witch somehow has managed to sneak up on you, and is not hovering slightly behind your shoulder.
"Arrogance indeed, O witch of wildling wood." You reply with a small smile, the irony of her comment not lost on you. "And ponder well must we whether twin fames of arrogance divine would wreak worse havoc than a single pyre of that selfsame stuff."
"I would suspect that nothing good will come out of those two cooperating." Alice's voice states from behind your other shoulder. "And I don't know if it would be much better if their meeting ended up in a fight."
"Shall this song-smith now have twin wizards perched upon his shoulders?" You wonder, a wry smile suddenly upon your lips. "Shall ravens wholly unlike black Hugin and dark Munin now be mine?"
"Heh, ya got some guts to compare the great Marisa to some stuffy bird -ze." The forest witch replies, leaning forward with a wide grin plastered on her face. "But I'll forgive you, 'cause I'm awesome like that."
"Anyway, I say go for it. If there's two people who deserve each other, it sure is Kanako and Loki." Marisa continues, her grin somehow widening even further as she apprarently imagines the consequences of such an meeting.
"That would be interesting, wouldn't it?" Alice's amused voice muses in your ear. "Though it would be unfair to poor Sanae. Sometimes I wonder how she manages."
"Perhaps so," You answer the two magicians, "But we shall see when we next meet the trickster which course will prove the best."
"In any case we lose little by speaking with him as soon as possible." Alice answers, you "However, if we wait there is no telling what he might do."
"Y'know, normally I'd be all for findin' that guy and punchin' him in the snout, but I dunno if we have the time." Marisa suddenly objects. "See, if Sanae found her way here where Loki was I'll betcha Reimu won't have problems to do it either, an' if we just sit around tryin' to contact fire boy she'll have plenty of time to get here an' rip us a new one. An' I still think we'd be better off tryin' to convince her that all this ain't our fault than tryin' to fight her -ze."
"So I say we take a trip to the village. Even Reimu won't start shootin' stuff up in there -ze." Marisa finally concludes. "Of course, if she still wants a fight we'll hafta kick her ass, but better there than here, y'know -ze."
"That is a surprisingly sensible suggestion coming from a hothead like you." Alice replies, a hint of genuine surprise in her voice.
"Heh, I woudn't be the greatest magician if I weren't the smartest gal around -ze." Marisa answers the dollmaker, an impish smile on her features. "So Sigurd, what'cha say?"
[ ] You shall call the Trickster God immediately, for even though it carries a risk you must meet him.
[ ] Marisa's suggstion would be best.
- [ ] Visit this village she spoke of
- [ ] Visit some other place instead (specify)
[ ] You fear not battle with the sacred maiden. If she is coming you shall stay and meet the Hakurei miko here.