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22495 No. 22495
Still more or less cut off.
----
[x] Draw the tengu Camera.
[x] Like older sister, like little brother. Use the Gap, retrieve reinforcements from the shrine.
[x] Give orders. An all out attack.

“Let's-” Your words are barely out of your mouth as everything leaps into action. High strung as they are, the girls barely need any words at all- the barest hint of the intention to attack sets them off and like a filming of a movie scene as the director yells “action”, everything leaps into sudden explosive motion. Fairies squeal in fright and scatter, dropping their steel nets in fright as Ran spearheads a ferocious charge straight into their ranks, sending them careening all over the subterranean air in various states of injury. A vicious danmaku fight, inevitably commences with much enthusiasm. On an unspoken signal, everyone makes like feisty little Miss Lilly and begins shooting in every other direction.

“-go!” You finish, rather somewhat less impressive than you had actually begun.

You spur Genjii to motion, which he does, rather amicably as always, taking the cue to back off to a rather safer distance. You're a realist really, when it comes to your chances in this chaotic massed air combat. Leave it to the professionals, your adopted mother always said, when either Parsee or yourself would overdo something- one of the few things your adopted parent said that Yukari did agree with.

Though, you do realize, with the flashes and bangs of danmaku discharge illuminating the underworld to almost ridiculous levels an area of space that's not producing it in some form or the other is going to be rather conspicuous. The blue clad girl- or Satori-sama, as the fairies call her, turns to you with an almost inhumane precision, seeming to know exactly what is the weak link in the otherwise formidable chain. And its certainly not Chen.

“There!' She calls,ducking almost instinctively as Momiji takes a swipe at her with her katana- from behind her no less, though she's obviously not as cool and collected as she would like to be. There's a frantic hint to her voice that even you can detect from the distance that you're at, as she turns to fend off Momiji with amazing competence, anticipating and avoiding Momiji's fluid strikes and slashes like something out of a show.

A look of concentration appears upon her face, as she passes, backing away from Momiji- momentarily close to you, and you watch in surprise as she performs a sweeping motion and summons up a little gale- complete with red autumn leaves that fly every other way followed by barrages of blazing ring patterned danmaku.

You don't know how Momiji reacted, however. You're forced to turn away quickly, carried away by Genjii, as faeries, obviously noting (eventually) that chasing after the silly fellow riding on a turtle is overall, much safer and less hazardous than fighting an ancient Kitsune and a much less ancient nekomata, or a divinely ( conveniently more likely) empowered miko, or a tengu with a really big sword. Though sheer numbers would tell eventually, you highly doubted that any of them would like going head on with Ran right now. Why suffer discomfort when other less intelligent and more foolhardy fairies are willing to try in your place?

Though, much to your detriment, in their excitement some of the little creatures overdo things and begin shooting at you with as much enthusiasm as they would have had had someone offered them an ice cream, causing Genjii to swerve about in mid air with un-turtle like agility and you, to hand on for dear life, whilst fumbling at your harness all the while.

Ran. Chen. Momiji, Aya, Reimu or the others don't seem to matter now. They can take whatever this Satori throws at them. You can't spare the thinking capacity to worry right now, holding on desperately on the shell of a flying turtle with the sizzle of near misses echoing your ears. Right now, your mind is mostly occupied with “Is this a pistol? Or a camera? And where the hell is either of them?” as your free hand grasps rather ineffectively.

A stray idle thought of “ Can't say much for grazing's therapeutic effects.” crosses your mind as a near miss sends and electric current of pain through your right shoulder from its energy discharge.( Or, having no magic “pool” to absorb the grazing discharge's energy, someone later explained that your body would have taken the full brunt of the ineffective, though painful graze.)

Cursing, your fingers finally find what they're looking for, the cool metallic feel of something and you whip it out- its not the pistol, but Aya's camera. And against all illogicality you wonder, this is fairly interesting, wasn't it? Raising it as steadily as you could, you aim towards the fairies and pressed the mechanisms. Shutter chance? Perhaps so- you having no prior indication that this was anything other than an antique and tengu made camera, and shooting if off anyway.

The effect is spectacular, to say the least and you very nearly let go, both in a literal and metaphorical sense, as multitudes of danmaku change their vectors in mid flight and come streaking towards your with alarming speed- and straight into the camera's yellowing lens array. This would be the first inkling that Aya's placed something exceedingly valuable and expensive into your hands.

“Oh wow-” you manage, rather bemused as the fairies careen around, looking for danmaku projectiles that are plainly not there. The reloading mechanism is stiff and unwieldy beneath your fingers- solid steel if what Aya's other camera indicated and requires every bit of force your fingers and give out to move the gears and cogs within and your budge it bit by bit with the chattering of panicked fairies filling the background.

“Nets! Nets!' One of the finally cries, as if remembering something important, which is rather typical for most fairies.

You take the reprieve to see how Ran is doing, as the outcry for “nets” reaches its zenith, where eventually one fairy would take initiative to pick them up, leading the rest in a bandwagon effect. Still there's a little time and Genjii spurred on your some words, breaks past the milling fairies towards the more central battle, where Ran is on the offensive- and its telling.

No doubt that this Satori-sama possesses an amazing intuitive and observation skills as she replicates bullet patterns used against her with ease- even approaching some of Yukari's favored pattern salvos with a kind of frantic competence, though, Ran's massive endurance and stamina begins to show. Along with Reimu, Momiji and Chen- and with fairies not being the most reliable of allies... this Satori-sama wont last long at this rate.

“Nets!” More fairies call. It's beginning- ofhe fairy bandwagon and it begins as one brave and slightly more intelligent fairy goes for the steel things, leading the rest into an aerial stampede of sorts.

Though to be fair- there are a lot more fairies than there are of your party.

Good grief. What would Yukari do?

Oh right- its fairly obvious isn't it? And you have the means to do so.

“Cheeeen!!!” You call, or screech, hoping that your responsible onee-chan will hear you- and she does, twirling about in mid air in a cascade of skirts and and tails. You can't afford to distract Ran now- not when she's concentrating. Chen on the other hand, comes to you readily enough, eyes fiercely protective as she swats asides fairies that get too close. “Chen will protect you!” she reassures firmly as she alters her trajectory, looping around in a 180 degree spin, to match your speed and direction.

“Thanks-” you say. “Help me with this will you?”

“Chen will.” the girl bobs in mid air.

You rip the gap from its casing ignoring the cuts on your fingers as you do so- not the time anyway, and pulling it to your face, along with one of the walkie talkies. You feel a brief surge as Chen supplies her magic into the gap's smooth surface and watch as it blazes to life, shimmering and shining in the gloom.

“Got nets Satori-sama!” the fairies call. Not a good sign, even though their mistress is too preoccupied to answer. The little creatures seemed even “dimmer” than their surface counter parts, you had to admit later.

You unfold it,and to your surprise, it seems “looser” than before. You couldn't really describe it as per say, though, “looser” and “relaxed” comes to mind- rather than whatever its usual feeling was, though it opens as easily as always, despite Yukari's difficulties with her own methods- your destination clearly in mind. Slightly dilapidated and messy, but fresh in your mind. Its a heaven compared to the twilight of the netherworld.

“Iku! Toki! Shiro! Anyone!” You yell, into the walkie talkie. With the gap in place, the transmission should get through.

No answer. You swear and try again, with Chen at your sdie, fending off fairies with little growls and larger danmaku. Till one gets too close- and you, by instinct, swat it with the gap, swinging it in a manner of swinging a tray. The little thing disappears from sight and is, you suspect in a rather unfamiliar place right now, judging from the yells coming from the walkie talkie.

“Bwawahhhhh!' Someone cries, as apparently, an entire room of people jumps into motion- as a series of screams shouts and yells and danmaku firing and what seems to be a rumble of thunder passes through the gap and the walkie talkie.

“It's Iku!” Iku's voice comes through.

“And Tokiko!”

“And Shiro-chan! Axe guys is here too and-”

“Sorry! Sorry! Sorry! I was reading and we fell asleep and-”

“Some fairy came through and-”

“Not the time! Iku interrupts. “I- We have to go down don't we?” She falters.

“Please.” you manage.

“I'll go- you all stay- no...no protests.” Iku's voice mentions distantly, no addressing you, but rather the others present in Reimu's quarters. “Uuhhh....And here I -”

“-Go!' And with that she's right next to you. “Oh Hi!” she manages, looking around, a slightly ill expression to her face.

“Net them!” “Go!” Come squeals of bravado and such.

“Steel chain nets? Ah.” Iku goes, unsteadily and raises her arm, twirling in mid air.

Fairies scatter and burst into illuminating motes of light as the great flashes rides the metal sparking off to anything remotely metallic in origin as the entire cavern becomes the center of a thunderstorm. The massive sonic boom of splitting air (and fairies) hammering against your ear drums as you clutch Genjii tightly gripping Chen close to you, as bits of fairies and scarps of clothing flutter in the now turbid air. The nets melt and distort in parts, links fusing and distorting where the bolts of lighting struck not conductive enough to transfer the millions upon millions volts of power trapping more fairies below as they fall with an almighty crash, in addition to cries of pain and terror.

Its their first time seeing a thunderstorm, you realize- subterranean dwellers they are and as much as Iku feared ( and overcame) the confines of the underworld, they feared the yawning massive endless sky and the power of the unknown storms far above. They break and flee dropping nets and implements in their route, leaving their mistress locked in combat alone.

And being supersonically perceptive as she is, Satori-”sama” should know she is in no position to win as well. Flying back, face bleeding and bruised, she takes a good look at Iku and concentrates, and in a faux sword swinging motion she plants an imaginary sword into a wall of earth- and flees as the literal tsunami of earth pillars sprout every where knocking Ran off the pursuit for now.

The last of the fairies break and follow their mistress, down one branching tunnel towards the palace in the distance while a few, tail the reemerged nekomata down another, more steeply sloping tunnel , shouting challenges ineffectively all the way, as most fairies are wont to do.

Ran joins up quickly, as with Momiji and Reimu, all looking rather angry, all things considered.

“Well?” Reimu asks shortly.

[] Follow “Satori-sama”
[] Follow the nekomata.
[] Split up.

Reimu argues that leaving Satori leaves you open to an attack from the rear( and a palace might have more loot), whilst Ran argues the necessity of heading deeper as quickly as possible. Iku just wants to go home.

Feel free to write in sensibly.
------

>> No. 22497
[x] Follow the nekomata.
Stay on target. We really don't want to divide our strength any more, we still have the MOTHERFUCKING OKUU AND HER SUNS to fight.
>> No. 22498
[x] Follow the nekomata.

BLITZKRIEG!
>> No. 22499
[X] Follow the nekomata.
[X] Send Iku back.

Pursuing Satori and raiding the palace will not help, seeing as she is already beaten enough and the final confrontation not taking place there. Pursuing and defeating Orin on the other hand will help in the long run, either by working ourselves through stage 5 or skipping straight to her being the mid-boss of stage 6.

Having Iku stay would wear her down mentally. Better rely on her working as a quick "summoning spell" like she did just now.
>> No. 22500
[X] Follow the nekomata.
[X] Send Iku back.
>> No. 22502
[x] Follow “Satori-sama”
>> No. 22503
[X] Follow the nekomata.
[X] Send Iku back.
>> No. 22504
Question: how open is Satori to peaceful discussion at this point? Since sending the bulk of the battle power towards Orin would be a good idea, but I feel it's also foolish if we didn't try to talk with Satori some about what's going on.
>> No. 22506
[X] Follow the nekomata.
[X] Send Iku back.
>> No. 22507
[X] Follow the nekomata.
[X] Send Iku back.
>> No. 22509
>>22499
Well, I hope you're right.

[ℤ] Follow the nekomata.
[ℯ] Send Iku back.

>Shutter Chance?
I cringed.
>> No. 22510
>>22499

I think we're thinking too much in the terms of the games when the story has departed massively from them (a major plot point was the normal Youkai not entering the underground, and here we are bringing a Tengu, Kitsune and Nekomata down with us.)

Just a matter of seeing how things go.
>> No. 22511
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22511
>>22509

Shutter Chance is n00b Tier.
>> No. 22515
>>22511
Not that so much as it's a pointless phrase the Japanese cobbled together that makes no sense despite it being in English.
>> No. 22516
>>22511
My god, someone actually saved that?
>> No. 22544
I'm inundated with quite a bit of work- plus a training course that requires in house stay ins for most of the week- thus I'm more or less unable to write for at least these two weeks.

I'll try not to delay too much though.
>> No. 22561
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22561
A bit later than what I had expected, but here it is.
---------
[] Follow the nekomata.

Reimu nods, complying to your decision, if a little reluctantly, soaring far ahead and leading the way herself, looking for all the world in her element, despite her tattered attire and her disheveled appearance. Youkai regulation- her part time job, as she calls it. Dirty and exhausted though she is, you are fairly sure that you could trust her to get you all the way down this stinking pit. Iku returns to “headquarters” and Ran and Chen return to flank you once more, determined and seemingly nigh unstoppable in their black mood. Momiji trails Reimu and the group angles downwards with some haste.

Now, if only that damned girl in blue, Satori-”sama” would just take a hint and give up the chase. A speck of blue bursts forth from the gallery's mouth and streaks towards the group.

Then again, had you really thought that that one setback would have stopped the persistent lady for any long period of time? You hadn't really particularly, really, with an unknown number of her little friends, or servants infesting the subterranean galleries and tunnels and her dogged persistence, she's obviously intent on making the little journey down to the hells as unpleasant as possible.

Swarming out of little passageways and doorways much too small for the likes of even Chen, fresh formations of those little pests emerge, rallying admirably to their mistresses call, though, later you would have suspected that perhaps the petite creatures just wanted a piece of the excitement. Ran visibly bristles as an iridescent shot sizzles past her ear and with more to follow.

Soon, its more or less a repeat of what happened a few minutes prior.

“We should have finished her off.” Ran growls inserting her hand into one of the many interior pockets of her robes and looking at them carefully. “I was too hasty.” She mutters darkly, a hint of self reproach entering her voice.

“Not now.” You say hurriedly, peeking over your shoulder and wincing as clouds of smaller sized danamku blaze past ineffectively.

“True.” She agrees. Almost casually she looses the glass flasks over her shoulder. “There, now let's speed up.” She continues. “Chen, keep close, and you- hold on tight.” You don't turn, but still do hear the smashing of glass and the yells of scalding pain the sacred liquid caused. It's a sharp distinct sound, even over the whistling in your ears but the wind carries it away soon enough.

The flash of outgoing and incoming shots brings light to the murky underworld, perhaps the first its seen in decades or centuries- you cannot say. You have larger issues at hand right now. Twisting arduously, you steal a look over your shoulder, Capturing Lens in hand and with some luck, see an ideal moment almost immediately. A blue speck trailing a distance away, with, unmistakably, an active spell card clutched in her hand. You could almost see her lips moving, reciting and activating the magical “programming.” Now's the chance.

Your finger moves to depress the shutter.

You've got her now.

But- not! As if on cue Satori-”sama” swerves away, ducking behind a screen of her fairy troops and denying your attempted nullification of one of her limited arsenal, perhaps having observed the workings of the capture lens prior- but so quickly? You don't care to speculate. Not now at least.

You refrain from shooting the bullet(s), just yet. You've no idea how many shots you'll have anyway. The tengu device seems to lack a counter for the film. Perhaps it would be best to stay cautious for now...

You stifle a growl and turn back towards the front. Not that it seems any better from the situation at the rear, mind you. It seems the further and deeper you descend into the pits of the underworld, the more of these quasi-zombie fairies appear- from every conceivable hiding place, to the point where even Reimu can't seem to be able to hold back their growing numbers.

Not to mention that nekomata. Flitting in and out of what seems to be everywhere at once, unleashing her maddeningly confusing stream of projectiles and then running off with a kind of boundless energy she shouldn't have. Not in this sort of environment. Special attention is paid to Moimiji, by virtue of being a White Wolf Tengu , and noticeably more danamku is being directed towards her general location, with a kind of sadistic glee. Not that Reimu gets off easy though.

“Separate them up. Properly this time.” Satori's voice rings out almost impassively, disconcertingly close to you. But it had just a hint of frustration to it. The kind university students got in their voices when they stared at a problem and could not comprehend it. The kind Mari and Ren, and yourself had used on many many occasions.

“Get the two Shikigami away from their...” she hesitates for a moment, fumbling for something you don't know about. “ ...Him.” she states finally, and the fairies obey, though after some initial confusion. Screaming their little, hilariously child like war cries, they charge, gossamer wings flitting in the murky underworld twilight.

“Che- Fairies!' Ran snarls, swatting them away by the dozens. Individually no challenge to her, but in such numbers- where did they all come from anyway? Like ants to a larger creature, wearing down Ran with sheer numbers and near suicidal stupidity. You make a grab for Ran's hand (though in hind sight, it wasn't a good idea), nearly being dragged off by Ran's weight and momentum, and causing her to stumble in mid air due to your added mass affecting magic's “flight laws”

And then, a chain reaction. Naturally, seeing you in this state, Chen grabs your other hand, gripping on tightly, eyes wide and burning with an almost hysteric intensity. Which throws her weight onto Genjii as well, which adds to your growing list of problems. Then, almost in slow motion, you watch from your precarious position as the other nekomata feints, breaking past both Reimu and Momiji in an agile curve, streaking towards you with inhumane speed.

The fairies tug while Ran struggles, shaking off many of them, yet more come, and you hold on, and Chen holds on to you, while Genjii tries his best to stay aloft and stable. A delicate balance, one which is interrupted all too soon.

“Ultimately Futile.” Satori is right beside you now, face pale and waifish- yet mysteriously fearsome. Relying on the massed fairies to keep Ran in check, she seems free to speak to you without reservations. Your plan lost cohesion the moment ….?!?” She pauses, blinking for a moment. You'd wish she'd stop stopping in the middle of a sentence, but... “How odd.” She lifts her wrist and an orb floats to a modest chest and opens, metallic lids opening like...like....

Its an eye. Something happens, its funny and you can't really describe it, but you find yourself thinking, “What's is it with the Ladies of Gensokyo and extra eye accessories? First that Moriya , and now this one...”

The girl blinks once again, face puzzled. Then sighs and almost negligently slaps Chen's hand away from the eye. “Paws off.” she stops short, giving you an irritated look. “Complicated fellow,” she mutters. “You claim to be Mizuhashi's brother, but you are human.” She stare for a moment almost ignorant to the chaos surrounding her.Chen takes one look at the struggling Ran and lashes out once again, only for you to stop her this time.

“Not now- we” You begin, and was interrupted almost immediately.

“Will talk immediately.” Satori states, as if the matter were not up to discussion. “We will-” her eyes widen as she calls a “Orin! Look behind!” and something hits you in the back, tumbling everything over in a mess of dresses, tails, shells, swords and shields. You hand desperately grasps for something to grab as you vision dissolves into so many multicolored blotches. .

[] Blue
[] Green
[] White
[] Red
[] Orange.

--------
I've got a bit of an interpretation on how Satori's and Komeiji's mental powers works, though it might be slightly different from normal.
>> No. 22562
[] Blue
>> No. 22563
[x] orange
>> No. 22564
>>22561

Well Satori's is mindreading (as in reading what's in your mind), which can extend to her copying spell card patterns.

Koishi's is basically messing around with the subconscious, which is an interesting can of warms (She can use it as a sort of stealth ability), and could affect a person's emotions by messing around.

[x] White
>> No. 22565
[x] Green
>> No. 22567
[+] Green
>> No. 22568
[x] Green
>> No. 22569
[x] Red

>>22564
Yes. Those are indeed how they're normally interpreted.

Now go read what he said again.
>> No. 22570
[x] Green
>> No. 22571
[Q] Blue

Because blue is a cool color, yeah.
>> No. 22572
[X]Blue

Blue equals Satori?
>> No. 22573
[\!/] Green

I love hearts!
>> No. 22574
[X] Blue

I like the color~

Also, if this correlate's to Satori, as I have a hunch it does, then the result could be interesting.
>> No. 22579
[x] Blue.
>> No. 22580
[x] Blue
>> No. 22582
[x] Orange.
>> No. 22583
[x] Green
>> No. 22590
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22590
[]Blue and Green?

You lose all sense of cohesion for a moment. For all intents you're falling and falling, Ran's fairy encrusted outstretched hand forever just out of reach- not that it would have done much good. You would have simply dragged her down with you. Not the way you would have wanted to go out- but its not like you have much of the choice in the matter here. You'd be grateful if you got out of this with minor injuries though, but there's a sort of regretful “oh well” feeling that you have that has this tinge of finality to it, even as you make one last desperate grasp towards the blue and green specks in your vision.

Everything doesn't go black as per say, but they do get a little blue and green.

---

You wake to the sound of arguing. Well, not wake, as in wake up, but more in a recover enough to identify voices and speech way. Two people are speaking, leaving you, as far as you know, thankfully ignored.

“What are you doing here Koishi?” A voice urgent and not at all pleased rings out.

“Mmmm, A younger sister should lend a hand when her Onee-chan's in trouble.” Another answers, in an almost care free manner. “Oo- a tengu and a kitsune. We haven't had those down here for ages and ages. Wow- its good that I came to investigate then- those lot are probably more than both of us could take on easily!” she continues her voice taking on a mildly surprised tone. “Poor fairies, they're outclassed so much that it isn't funny.”

“All the more reason you shouldn't be here, Koishi!” The other replies hotly. “This is no place for someone as pacifistic as you! That Fox's sense are very acute- your abilities can suggest to her that we're not here for a time but, she can and will see through it eventually!”

“But she didn't- I got in quick enough. None of them saw me coming!”

“This one did. His mind is odd.” The voice draws closer to you for a moment, before turning away.

“Him? He just got lucky- grabbed me out of nowhere.”

“Luck? Koishi! With so much danmaku flying around, you were luck enough not to be bleeding out that amazingly empty head of yours.” the former snaps.

“Well- I've still got to help you out hmm? I live here too!' an argument seems on the verge of breaking out. “Besides, even if I don't like shooting stuff up, I can perform other tasks as well.”

“Like?”

You take a chance and peek an eye open. The blue girl, Satori stands not five meters from where you sit, propped against a cool wall right now, arms folded beneath her chest and scowling at her mirror image? No? Her doppelgangers pale face is framed with green tresses, and is clad cheerfully in greens and orange. She clutches a felt hat to her small chest, while looking at her likeness thoughtfully.

“Well, like what's I'm doing now I suppose.” she answers firmly, sparking off a long silent stare from Satori.

“I had it under control.” Satori sighs finally.

“I-well- oh. Maybe I was hasty, but it looked like well, you know...you were out numbered you know.” The girl raises a hand to flick back a stray lock of green hair almost shyly. “Well, I didn't know.” she finishes lamely. “Misunderstanding, ah ha.”

“Right. Misunderstanding. Remind me why we do this again?” Satori growls, looking upwards.

You take the cue.

The battle continues, far above. Except that its raining fairies ( their scraps of clothing and lost shoes, occasionally a stray bow or ribbon.) You feel a sudden chill, at the thought of how rather far you've fallen. Unconsciously a feeling hand lurches out, feeling your back for odd twists or distortions. Thankfully there are none, though you could be forgiven for being rather up the scale on paranoia at the time.

“Trust and love? You don't read my mind and so I don't block you out.” Koishi smiles.

“Mmmm.” Satori grumbles halfheartedly. “Now, this one...” she turns her head to regard you gravely. “One whose mind is strange. Perhaps you are mad, or perhaps you have drunk too much of that oni's sake. No matter, you are an invader in my realm.”

“You read minds?” You accuse, gasping out the words with effort. You feel exhausted really, and in no condition to move.

“You don't believe me? That is of no concerned to me.” Satori replies.

“Then surely you can tell how urgent my task is here?” you ask. She has to know by now, right? She's a mind reader, or claims she's one at any rate.

“No.” She dismisses your repose coldly. “ You are obviously insane.”

“And why? May I ask?” you question, half afraid, and yet more annoyed than anything else.

“You're insane. Need I say more?

“This one seems to be telling the truth, onee-chan.” Koishi pops up, gazing at you with interest. “Well- at lease he thinks so-” she adds, after a moments pause.

“Honestly- metal boxes which fly across the sky at faster than the tengu- powered by explosive fluids which they burn and poison themselves with? How about this Koishi? He seems to believe that they've imprisoned the sun in a metal cage pfft. And I don't believe that there could be six...hmm billion, you call it? people in the world.” she finishes shortly.

“Eh- I don't know?” Koishi looks worried. “ He looks quite sure. I mean, if his people captured the sun- they must be quite something, don't you think?”

“Thus, as I said, he must be quite mad. He seems to believe that he's Mizuhashi's older brother- and that Mizuhashi is a songstress of some sort. Snnnrk. Mizuashi....songstress....hmpf.”

“You're an idiot.” You think. Loudly.

“Hmpf...unimpressive. And rude too.” Satori says eying you impassively (all three of them). “Delusions of grandeur as well. I wager. Familial ties to a great ruler of the Kitsune? And to the pillar of the boundary?” Hmpf...we'll see. Don't think you can astound me with these far fetched tales- I've learned that much at least, from my experience. Your mind is a book open to me.”

“Poor little fellow isn't he?” Koishi adds. “Must have hit his head then poor -”

“Che- then dispose of him as you wish, send him back up or keep him as a pet or whatever- his mind is strange and I don't want to get a migraine.” Satori turns to walk off.

“Where are you going?” Koishi asks.

'To retrieve Orin from those brutes.” Satori states flatly. “You pull back, if its a fight these invaders want...we might have to get Okuu from Hellfire's mantle- I haven't heard from her in a month, but that's Okkuu for you, enjoys her job way too much.”

“Ah, bye bye, onee-chan!” Koishi waves as Satori rises into the air, but not before giving you one last, dry, speculative look. Then she turns and rises rapidly, till she's a blue speck, indistinguishable from the blazing firefight far above.

“Well now, little fellow- what shall I do with you?” Koishi's sweetly chiming voice draws your attention warily back to her. Even more petite than Satori is, and with both sleeves covering her hands as she folds them below her chin, she's the very image of “cute”. You won't stoop to using “moe”, but its certain that she's trying to act that way. Besides, when have you used “cute, or the dreaded “m” word before? You're not thinking right here, besides, that that small black sphere, an eye that's closed flaoting next to her.

You're fairly sure you weren't supposed to see that either.

Well well, what shall I do with you?” her eyes widen as she leans in closely, till you're almost mouth to mouth. Her breath quickens as she smiles- but to you, not in a good way.

[] Headbutt
[] Call for Ran, or Chen, or anyone.
[] Use the Gap once more.
[] er....to the surface please?
[] …...er...wan? Pet? Desperate times...

Feel free to write in sensibly.
--------
Ah Koishi- open to interpretation.
>> No. 22593
File 12570897556.jpg - (626.47KB , 984x1294 , 0b79476ec5ac830b5095e456b11d0202.jpg ) [iqdb]
22593
[x] Headbutt

;_;
Gettin' taken home is probably not a good thing.
>> No. 22594
[x] Headbutt

Don't mess.
>> No. 22596
[B] Use the Gap once more.
>> No. 22598
[X] Mortal Caving
>> No. 22599
[x] Headbutt
>> No. 22601
Remember what happened last time we tackled a non-mortal being head on? Yeah, that was a cool scene regardless of how we were chided for it.

We could have really used the wisp of Suika in that conversation.

[+] Use the Gap once more
-[+] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[+] IT'S SPRING
>> No. 22602
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!

Come on, guys, Koishi seems a great deal nicer than her sister, and a good deal less confrontational. No need to go applying violence. Besides, she's a youkai - her skull is probably several times harder than ours is.

I'd think Iku the best support here, but if push comes to shove then we can pull out Lily... though I'm a little concerned about throwing her into that fracas, given her propensity for undiscriminating destruction.
>> No. 22603
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!
>> No. 22604
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!
>> No. 22605
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power (explain that you're getting someone that can back up your story, since I'm sure even the underground knows of the dragon's messenger)
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up? Or at least explain things to Koishi.
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts or if things go south.
--[X] IT'S SPRING!

Lily is the perfect distraction since everyone'd be too busy avoiding her shots.
>> No. 22606
For clarification, by "take us back up," we mean for Iku to take us back up to the battlefield, not back up to the surface.

Because we're not giving up.
>> No. 22607
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!
>> No. 22608
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!

I'm sure she'll totally not see anything suspicious about this.

And running from a mindfucker? Oh, that's going to be fun.
>> No. 22609
[X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!

Oh hell it might work.
>> No. 22611
About this "tak[ing] back up" stuff: didn't ???? already state somewhere that flying and carrying someone is difficult even with many fliers to one passenger? what happened to Genji?
>> No. 22613
>>22611

Perhaps we can have Iku direct Genji to us while she joins the fray?
>> No. 22619
Wow, Satori is really pissing me off. I mean, to an almost unimaginable extent.

After all of this is done and settled, I vote for sending her on a nice, well-deserved vacation.

In Times Square.
>> No. 22620
Forget New York, try sending her to Tokyo which is currently the most heavily populated metropolitan area in the world.

How large is the population in Gensokyo? Has there been any mention on that?
>> No. 22622
>>22620
There aren't that many Japanese in New York, though, relatively speaking.
>> No. 22658
>>22622

The point.
Your head.
>> No. 22660
>>22658
My point was sending her somewhere heavily populated and where it would difficult for her to communicate with others.

What was your point?
>> No. 22664
>>22660
I'm not that anon but, I'd wager it was something like

More people = more thoughts = more pain

sage for pointlessness
>> No. 22730
File 125768534215.jpg - (42.78KB , 629x529 , Lily.jpg ) [iqdb]
22730
X] Use the Gap once more
-[X] Ask Koishi "politely" to borrow some power
-[X] Maybe Iku can take you back up?
--[X] If she's still feeling out of sorts, then...
--[X] IT'S SPRING!

“Er.....” you manage, not really getting anything across, being at a loss for words at the moment. And perhaps that is not too unusual- she's practically a head shorter and probably less than half your weight- in the human realm, she would have been the one without much to say, but no, not now and not here. If anything else, that little smile on her marble pale features gets a little wider as she draws closer and closer and-

Her eyes widen as her lips meet with something rather unexpected really, a flat silvery plane serving as a passable obstruction between you and her face. “Not too close now, Miss Koishi,” you warn, recalling the name that Satori had addressed the girl with earlier. Had she been trying to kiss you? Wishful thinking, you chide yourself, you heard that there were vampires in Gensokyo from Yukari anyway- and you had a nagging suspicion of the exact kind of youkai the sisters were.

“Oh, you can move?” her eyes widen, though not exactly in shock, peering over the edge of the gap in your hands. Too much like some one playing around for your taste. “Oh wow- maybe you're so helpless after all. I'll have to try harder then!” she exclaims with a ominous kind of cheerfulness.

“Try harder?” You mouth, eyes narrowing.

“Sure. If you say so!” she laughs, seemingly unaware of the chaos far above. “So, don't move please? You wouldn't deny me this, would you?”

“Oh, for heaven's sake,” you snap, feeling the beginnings of a headache. 'Deny you what?” You fumble a grasp of her hand away clumsily, feeling more irritable by the second. Yes, that's a migraine coming on alright- a familiar sensation, considering that you're jugging university and this messy pot of stew that is Gensokyo at the moment.

“You want blood? Are you a bloody vampire or something?” You practically yell out, understandably grumpy. You've just fallen an unknown distance off a flying turtle, and you know what your headaches getting worse and- “Why are you staring at me like that?” You ask finally, looking down at the now pouty girl.

With her tongue sticking out over red lips in a most impertinent manner, she glares at you a bead of sweat trickling down one side of her face.

“You're difficult.” she accuses, glaring through golden eyes before sniffing in the chill and stepping back to smooth her skirt and sleeves.

“Me? Likewise.” You mutter, gap still held in front of you like a charm or something. Maybe that's a good thing. “You're not getting any blood, get it?” You warn again, drawing an annoyed look from her.

“Oh? Did I say I wanted any?” She asks, frowning and somehow managing to look exceedingly sulky at the same time. You're difficult and I mean really difficult.” She emphasizes. “Oh, and I think I know why- you're too tense- relax a bit will you? Stop thinking for a little while and-”

“No. Absolutely not.” You snap. “Why would I?” She can't honestly be so naive, could she? Then again, naive is not what you would use to describe most youkai. Maliciously innocent maybe.

“Oh?” She stops short. 'I can make you you know, I just haven't been trying my best, that's all.” she says, voice taking on a warning tone. If alarm bells could gave run in your head, they would have, though they would probably only add to the migraine.

You'll need to use the gap of course, short of shooting her with the pistol or running away, there isn't much else for you to do anyway. But the power supply has to come to somewhere...

Her eyes narrow as she concentrates and the air comes alive.

Well, Ran always taught you to be polite, no?

“Some magic please,” you mutter, “That'll be ¥1200, please come again...pfft.” It seems you're not yourself anyway, you're off, because you know you wouldn't make such a stupid joke, would you?

The air comes alive with the girl's power, all of it directed at you- and perhaps for once in the entire dammed trip, you ready. You don't know if it'll work, but hell, for some strange reason, your headaches are subsiding. You're happy, you're content, and your utterly relaxed and surrounded by fields of mitrashi dango and flowers and...

One little part of yourself, probably the grumpy part says, I still have a headache and that damned gap better be open and- swings your arm. No need to “plug it in” per say when there's so much magic floating around, is there.? You don't know if it'll work and you don't particularly care, because you're happy. (Not that you'll mention this ever again.)

A smirk appears on her face.

“Hows that now?” She asks, voice now soothing. “I liked that challenge.” She giggles coquettishly.

“Hows this?” You reply You had been about to call Iku, you know...thunder, lightning- the works, but now you don't care...happy.

The gap's open though, not too big, but still open to about half your height.

“The flowers are blooming, the air is fresh-” you literally sing, as the girl nods and nods as you continue, sickening yourself later.

“So you'll play with me?” she asks finally, a tiny voice that compels you...

“- the water is clear and the grass is green. Of course I'll play with you, dear girl. It's Spring!” You chortle.

“Oh? I'm overjoyed!' she squeals happily, stepping around the gap. “I'd be happy to- “

“Spring?” Another voice calls, this one curious and tiny. “I thought I heard someone say Spring. Woke me up mmm”

A head pokes through, surrounded by angelic tresses and angelic wings to boot- true beauty! Such perfection! Such marvelous silkiness. The angel looks at you curious as you stroke her hair, giggling gently. She grabs your head and shakes you slightly.

“Heya- you're not grumpy today! Wheres the spring?” she asks. “And who're you?” She asks.

“Oh- no one important,” the lovely green haired girl in the orange dress smiles. “Just look into my eyes- and relax...”

“Relax?” the angel asks. “Relax...”

“That's it...” the other girl coos gently, “relax...relax...flowers...sun...sky...wind...”

The angel's face bursts into a broad smile as she sinks to her knees, tears literally streaming down her face, such perfection and beauty that you would have stooped to collect every drop if you could...

“...Spring?” she whispers, every syllable, perfection.

“Oh...spring....yes it's spring.” the other replies gently.

“Spring?” The angels stands. “Spring! SPRING!!!!”

-----

[] Throw yourself to the floor.
[] Hide behind a rock.
[] Who cares? It's spring!

----------
Feel free to write in sensibly (or not).
>> No. 22732
[x] Who cares? It's SPRING!!!!
>> No. 22733
[X] Throw yourself to the floor.

Come on, we don't want a faceful of danmaku.
>> No. 22734
[x]That headache is still there. Find some peace and quiet.
>> No. 22735
[X]Who cares? It's spring!

Sorry Koishi, maybe once we get to know you better. Or not.
>> No. 22736
[+] Throw yourself to the floor.
I imagine collapsing to the ground is also appropriate.
>> No. 22737
[x] Hide behind a rock and try to figure out what's going on.
>> No. 22738
[X] Throw yourself to the floor.
>> No. 22739
[X] Throw yourself to the floor.
>> No. 22740
[x] Throw yourself to the floor.
>> No. 22741
[X] Throw yourself to the floor.

SPRING MOTHERFUCKERS
>> No. 22742
[X] Throw yourself to the floor.
[X] Tackle Koishi to the floor as well. She may not be an ally, per se, but the poor girl really has no idea what she's just helped you unleash.

Oh Lily, you silly goose.
>> No. 22745
We're not going to throw ourselves to the floor and then look up and see White all relaxed and cool with everything, are we?

Because if that happens, I am going to be rather irked.
>> No. 22746
[ℤℯ] Throw yourself to the floor.

>>22745
As will I.
>> No. 22751
So are we the Herald Of Spring now?
>> No. 22753
>>22751

We're the Herald of the Herald of Spring.
>> No. 22754
[X]Who cares? It's spring!

Feel you later, Koi
>> No. 22762
[x] Hide behind a rock.
>> No. 22763
[X]Who cares? It's spring!

Ride this magical trip to the end, damnit.
>> No. 22769
[x] Throw yourself to the floor.
>> No. 22826
File 125815323666.jpg - (45.04KB , 400x355 , af4c5c093e6a3cf5f80b1400f74296e7.jpg ) [iqdb]
22826
Under the PRESSURE of being almost raped by Koishi, our hero snaps.

IT'S SPRING
>> No. 22856
File 125828671688.jpg - (488.11KB , 550x750 , koishiah.jpg ) [iqdb]
22856
[] Throw yourself to the floor.

Lovely ladies heralding spring- the sheer simplicity of the lines astound you. Just why,, have you never considered becoming a poet before? Your talents obviously lie in this noble direction. And your muse, stands before you, hair of spun golden threads and wings as soft as spring touched snow... facing yet another, with a heavenly smile upon her face. This surely must be heaven, a part of you insists. Ignore the damp rock, subterranean features, the musty old corpse smell and the funny squishy thing you're sitting on.

It's spring and its nice.

Right?

And that angelic girl is Miss Siroko, isn't she? Everyone in Gensokyo knows to duck behind something solid when one of the Lily sisters does her rounds, so just why are you prancing around with her during one of her epileptic fits of Spring anyway?

Koishi seems to have gotten wind that something isn't quite right about the scenario here. Her eyes widen in surprise, then in curious interest, and you feel as the pressure on your mind slipping away. Withdrawing and weakening- a soft gooey like feeling- like your mind's coming loose from a mold of sorts. Spring fades and the subterranean netherworld returns. The migraine remains though.

“Oh? And just what are you doing...?” she asks, looking at the gently quivering form of Shiroko. “Calm down- its spring, its nice and you can just relax, okay?”

Ah. Koishi seems to be concentrating on Shiroko now, whatever little bit of magic she specializes in is almost entirely focused on the elder Lily. Which leaves you free to dive to the floor in an exceptional example of a rushed tumble to a hard unforgiving stone. Now that you can make rational decisions- to an extent, you should, especially with Shiroko about of go off like a shoddy fireworks factory at any minute.

In Gensokyo, the new year's shrine visits and such are usually carried out with great celebration – like most of Japan. However, unlike most of Japan, the pilgrims and visitors, both ground bound youkai and human like tended to carry with them, large shields, or even old pieces of samurai's armor, from a more turbulent age. Just in case, of course, for the off chance that Shiroko here had gotten out of bed early for that particular year.

Of course, you haven't lived here all your life, but several spring visits and both Chen's and Ran's urging, had almost hard wired the instinct to duck when someone yelled “Spring”, into you.

But that's enough internal elaboration.

“Oh? You? Hmmhf???” Koishi's voice rises a few octaves. You suspect her powers involves influencing minds somehow, and perhaps you're right, it did felt like you had been seeing odd things just now. But mind control or whatever it was that she controlled, it wouldnt do the green and orange clad girl much good. Shiroko's going on something beyond pure instinct now, and now amount of mental suggestion could interfere with that. Maybe some anti-seizure medication would but... would it do much against an sever overdose of Spring?

You look up, briefly considering snatching Koishi out of Shiroko's warpath, before it actually happens, but... oh well. You did feel some sympathy for the girl though. She really didn't know just what she had gotten herself into. The Lily sister's dogma of “why waste time aiming when you can shoot more, ( or in this case, why waste time thinking at all when you can shoot even more on muscle memory and brain neuron overload) was famed throughout Gensokyo. But, then again, the underworld had been isolated for quite a time...

“Oh? What's this? Is this supposed to intimidate m-”

Jerking erratically, Shiroko lets it loose, blazing iridescent into the netherworld gloom. Wings fully strtched out and hair shimmering, her lithe form is lift slightly into the air as a veritable torrent of danamku blazes forth, so bright that you're forced to shield your eyes, keeping your head down, whilst still braving the streams of hot air to observe the scene. Not that you can see much.

Just Shiroko's silhouette, blazing white under the power of her attack, wings and dress white beyond white and hair molten gold. And beyond that... Koishi's yell of surprise and pain. That soft fabric she was wearing wouldn't do anything against that sort, and whilst most danmaku tended to follow a set pattern, Shiroko's tended to fill up the area with as much of it as conceivably possible, which meant no escape in a tight spot. Unless you could use a gap of course. You had recalled seeing Yukari quite a time back, with herdress smoldering and chapeau missing, stepping into her house, muttering “Spring? Tch.”

More potent than they would seem, those Lily sisters. Ran had affirmed later, after putting your sister figure to bed. Which was followed, naturally, by a lecture on how to deal with either of the Lily sisters. Which meant, for you, to duck whenever this sort of thing happened.

Koishi, receiving no such lecture, takes the full brunt of Shiroko's Spring Special.

And suddenly, almost as quickly as it had begun, it ends. Shiroko collapses to her knees, breathing heavily, with her face slicked with sweat and trembling. Her wings droop, till her feathers are coated with the floor's much and she glances at you tiredly.

“That was some Spring, huh?” she wheezes. “Oooh...now I'm even more tired- and where has the spring gone?”

And gone it is, with Koishi lying pathetically in the cave floor's much, slowly smoldering. Danamaku was usually non fatal per say, but she did get battered quite a bit- and she'll need some new clothes, to say the least. You bend over to check her breathing- she is, though shallow and labored. Knocked out stone cold by the looks of it, and she'll get some bruises as well.

“Eh? What happened to her?” Shiroko asks finally.

“You happened to her.” you answer with a sigh. “This isn't-”

You're interrupted by a low roar. A frothing spittly sound of pure aggression- and agitated by the flashes of lightfar above and the closer ones near by. Tales of wild feral, bestial youkai come to mind immediately. Youkai that had never humanity's intelligence- but dangerously strong and feral all the same, even to other youkai. With a single fairy around...

“Ah! There is a disturbance in the spring!” Shiroko announces, “there's NO spring here!”

Not the time, you think. What to do. What to do.

You're still busy considering when something large and misshapen plants itself between yourself and the gap.

[]Shoot it.
[] Shiroko can shoot it.
[] We both run. Down the tunnel.
[] We both run, try to break past to the gap.
[] Try to signal to the fighters far above. Maybe they'll see us.
And...
[]Eh...We can't leave Koishi, can we?

Fell Free to write in sensibly.
>> No. 22861
[X] We both run. Down the tunnel.
>> No. 22862
Does this mean we'll be leaving the gap behind? If so I might have to change the vote.
>> No. 22864
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

[X] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?

>You're still busy considering when something large and misshapen plants itself between yourself and the gap.

Yeah, hey, guys, somehow I don't think that just leaving our gap behind over here, open and functioning, would be a very bright move.
>> No. 22865
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

[X] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?
>> No. 22866
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.
>> No. 22867
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

[X] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?

We need to get the gap back, and getting Koishi could be nice at best, and if things get sour with Satori and/or Orin, hostage time.
>> No. 22868
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

[X] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?
>> No. 22869
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

Fuck Koishi. A mind is a sacred thing, and anyone who thinks messing with one is alright out to be hung out to dry, posthaste.
>> No. 22870
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
Meh, Koishi can die for all I care, even if I don't hate her all that much, she should die because her sister is such a massive pain in the ass.
>> No. 22871
>>22869
>>22870

Leaving Koishi behind is a major dick move.
>> No. 22872
>>22869
>>22870

Leaving Koishi behind is a major dick move.
>> No. 22873
>>22871
Why? She enjoys bullying and bending people to her will. We know almost nothing of her and all that we know is shit.
Just because villains in Touhou usually end up being good people, it doesn't mean that she is one in this case in particular. She has shown no redeeming qualities.
>> No. 22874
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
[x] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?

We need a meat shield.
>> No. 22875
>>22872

That and she has use, either by convincing Satori of our real intent and saving her, or if things get difficult a hostage. I doubt Satori would want to risk her own sister. (Though you'd need some good mind games to back it up)
>> No. 22881
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

Tell her the new arrival took the spring. She will respond accordingly.
>> No. 22883
>>22875

What this guy said.
>> No. 22884
Oh, hey, here's someone who can warp our mind and turn us into a drooling vegetable!

Wait, I've got it! Instead of GETTING THE HELL AWAY FROM HER, we'll TAKE HER WITH US! It's not like she'll try again once she gains consciousness or anything, right?
>> No. 22885
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
>> No. 22886
>>22884

Then remind her of what we're running from.

The point is preferably prove that we're not some nutjob as to make things easier.

And I doubt she'd be in great shape after being at ground zero for Spring, and I doubt she wants to experience another one.
>> No. 22888
So we're going to prove we're not a nutjob...by kidnapping her?
>> No. 22889
>>22888

Depends on what happens next, since preferbly it'd be saving her from the wild youkai. If worse comes to worse, then we have an ace in the hole in dealing with Satori.

And the people saying she'd wake up and mind fuck us are assuming that a troll is writing this story. ???? is not a troll, sure he might have written Satori and Koishi in an unfriendly manner, but this is an incident, few people are friendly during one. And there hasn't been alot of 100% malicious beings in this story. Closest thing was Tenshi, and after the main conflict, she's shown as a helpless pouting brat.

That and leaving her one way or another has a higher chance of biting us in the ass.
>> No. 22891
[ℤℯ] >>22881

Melancholy, I fucking loved the History of Spring thing in this last post. Beautifully done.
>> No. 22896
[X] Shoot it.
[X] Shiroko can shoot it.

[x]Leave Koishi behind
>> No. 22911
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
[x] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?
>> No. 22913
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
[x] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?
>> No. 22952
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
[x] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?
>> No. 23082
[B] Shoot it.
[B] Shiroko can shoot it.
[B] Leave Koishi behind.
>> No. 23108
File 125950631636.jpg - (108.19KB , 500x500 , koishi.jpg ) [iqdb]
23108
It's taken a while.
-------------
[x] Shoot it.
[x] Shiroko can shoot it.
[x] Eh... We can't leave Koishi, can we?

You look up- slowly. The creature is much taller than you are, whatever classification of youkai it was, it was large indeed. Beside you, Shiroko looks up as well, almost in scync with yourself, her mouth parted to form a little "o", understandibly impressed. The spring fairy barely comes up to its knee after all, and to be fair, it has a rather intimidating presence.

Its gives a wet throaty growl and takes one wary step forward.

And you instictive take one back- a bad move, all things considered. Seeing its opponent so fearful reassures its confidence, as it takes another, more confident step towards the two of you. Your eyes trail upwards, toward its shrouded head, where a single red eye leers back at you, the other, covered by matted folds of rough cloth. Endboldened, it steps forward once more, and again, and again, perhaps verging on the thin line between deciding if you were the prey or the predator here.

A stupid? Creature then? Perhaps so, but oh so large and probably very physically strong. Looking at it, it was quite probably stonger than most humanoid youkai in terms of sheer brute strength and resiliance, with the obvious exception of the oni of course.

Another step, and Koishi is right at its feet, its murky skin and claws very nearly touching her- it barely pays her any attention but...

Heh. You'll regret this later. In fact, you really regretting this now, but tha alternative, running away in a straight line down the tunnels dosn't seem like a very good idea. It is no doubt, much faster than you are, ground bound or not, and you'll be giving the mishappen thnig your unguarded back to strike at. You'd like to keep it where you can see it, thank you very much. Not that you arn't shaking like a twig, though.

One trembling hand reaches for the camera- then you decide otherwise. Feral youkai don't use danmaku- Aya's capturing lens would hardly be useful. Ran had said it. Chen had said it. Keine had repeated it many many times during her overly long lectures. Even the small school children knew it. Some of them could breath fire or spit venom though, which made it more impertative to go straight for a kill, if possible.

It had no concept of reasoning or mercy, and thus had no regard for the civillized conflict of danmaku (relatively civillized,when compared to the kind of violence humans are more used to.) and would probably do it "old style" as Yukari had decribed once. Teeth, claws and brute force.

You reach for Ran's pistol instead. Where she got it from, you will probably never know, but you can't say that youre unhappy about having it here with you. Now, if only it had a 30 round magazine and and a larger calibre... - and nearly drop it in suprise. It's a little...overlarge isn't it? You honestly don't recall it being so large back then- considering it fitted into its holster quite comfortably before, but now it seems quite too large for that.

But this isn't the time for this isn't it?

"Got anymore spring left in you, Shiro?" you mutter to your shorter companion.

"Eh hehe...er..."

Not too much then.

"On my count, shoot like you shot just now. Three...two...on-"

The behemoth rears back, getting ready to charge, you'd imagine. Cutting it fine here...

"ONE!"

"SPRING!"

The pistol kicks back with force disproportional to its size- that said, you could imagine that you've just shattered your wrist. That is to say, is massive, even for its enlarged size- clearly it was built for a youkai's hand rather than a humans, even if you discounted the fact that it was obviously magical in some way. But enough of that for now. More importantly for that moment, a massive boom fills the air, drowning out even Shiroko's stream of explicitives and danmaku.

You couldn't miss, not with a target that size. The head kicks back in shock as the creature raises its arms to its shrouded head, howling in pain. Loud enough to cause the cavern to shudder, and both you and Shiroko to fall to your knees.

"Awww...ears..." Shiroko whines, hat falling off he rhead and into the sludge on the floor.

"Let's move..." you manage, sparing a look towards the stricken creature. Tough bastard. Even Yukari would have gone down with such head trauma. Disadvantages of the human form youkai and what not. Traded resiliance and overwhelming might of body for humanity's intelligence- some old youkai lore or something like that. It hadn't really interested you back then and not now either.

Especially with this situation right before you.

"...I'm not!' Shiro continues- "can't fly...can't shoot...nemore....going to go back and..."

You heave a shallow breath of fustration.

Fairies...che

Reaching forward you grab her about the waist and run for it, her petite form bouncing around at your side as you sling her underarm and run. She squeaks in suprise- though probably not protest, but doesn't resist. She's light at any rate and even a child would be able to lift her easily- which is good, because you're going to run like hell itself was chasing you- and in a way it already is.

But, you can't just leave her...can you?

Koishi's lying there, barely five meters away, and behind her, the struggling beast is recovering...

Ran said this...and that...be a man...even though Gensokyo is mostly populated by women...

"Hey! Wrong way!' Shiroko squeals as you dash for Koishi's unconcious form. "Wrong way!"

But its not a far distance and you get there in two steps. Good grief, she's torn her blouse and you can see that she dosn't seem to be the er...conservative type. Either way, you grab her as well and throw her lith form over your shoulder and feeling too much like someone who's comitted a crime. You take off down the passge, running as fast as your legs can carry you.

You're not an atheletic person per say, but the creature's massive roars in the background provide good motivation, to say the least. You've got Koishi over the shoulder and Shiro under your arm, and you, with a heartbreaking feeling, know that you've left the gap behind. You can't retrieve it now, not with that thing there... you turn your head for one last look, the forlorn perfect window in this hell under the earth. And the feral youkai leering threateningly from beside it. You continue running- surely it must have recovered by now.

It's didn't feel right. It wasn't even your's, in a way. Such things truly belonged to Yukari, and leaving it there seemed so...

A small pat on the elbow indicates that Shiroko understands- which is fairly deep- for a fairy. Or maybe she's just telling you that you're squeezing too tightly. Probably the latter, since her wings are flapping uncomfortably, prompting you to ease up a little. Either way, you've descended somwaht, turning several corners and getting yourself utterly lost in the process. Both Shiroko and Koishi are feeling heavier by the minute and you would kill for a drink of water.

But on the upside, the creature dos not seem to be following you, though thats not to say it cannot track you by scent if it watned to. Which is chilling to say the least. But not so much as that! Good grief!.

Even Shiroko falls silent as she huddles closer to you.

you've come to a fork in the gloomy path. It stinks of copper and the floors wet enough to soak your shoes, but that's not the main problem here. The left path descends steeply, though still traversable- not at all a problem. Though, the orange glow emating from down that path wasn't very auspicious or so to say. Not to mention the gusts of hot air and the feeling of magic- and something else. Your skin tingles.

And the other- there are no blasts of hot air and any omious glowing, but a solid wooden stake, driven clean through a great feral youkai and straight into the solid rock, protruding like some monsterous statuette. Its possibly even larger than the one you encountered earlier and its obviously dead. You suddenly do realize why the ground is so wet and so does the younger Lily, considering how she throws up on your shoes.

You take a few steps, over to the side of the hunched carcass, looking in revulsion as offal leaks from the exit wound and note that the wooden thing wasn't a stake- more like a solid wooden pillar. Driven straight into the rock. Considerable force had been applied, to say the least.

You step on something soft, and suddenly feel the sudden urge to throw your shoes away.

[] We'll head down, follow the light. Being stuck onto a wall must be bad for your health.
[] We'll head stright on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
---
Feel free to write in.
Thanks.
>> No. 23109
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.
>> No. 23110
[x] We'll head stright on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
Lava burns. Or so they say.
>> No. 23111
[] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
>> No. 23112
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.
>> No. 23113
[X] We'll head down, follow the light. Being stuck onto a wall must be bad for your health.

Well, our objective here is deeper underground, as unpleasant as that fact might be.
>> No. 23114
[] We'll head stright on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
>> No. 23115
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
>> No. 23116
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x] Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.

Hooray, you're back!
>> No. 23125
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
>> No. 23144
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.
>> No. 23161
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.

>You take a few steps, over to the side of the hunched carcass, looking in revulsion as offal leaks from the exit wound and note that the wooden thing wasn't a stake- more like a solid wooden pillar. Driven straight into the rock.

A closer inspection of the wooden, phallic object reveals an inscription near the base; it reads: "Kanako was here, and she was awesome."
>> No. 23163
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.
'Blue was here, red is a loser'
>> No. 23288
File 126010975497.jpg - (209.28KB , 728x1120 , ebbf7f649511ae9c3cc208d56c84160607b8db0b.jpg ) [iqdb]
23288
[x] We'll head straight on, past the dead...thing. Lava is bad for your health.
[x]Try to find a way to go back to the others, we have to get back on track to rescue Yukari.

Your shoes aside, there is current the more important matter of where to go and what to do right at hand, and you'd be less than wise to assume you had all the time in the world to decide. And considering the options with some haste, you quickly make your decicion to carry on stright ahead, looking warily down the descending passage with some tepidation, just waiting for magma or lava to come gushing out. It didn't happen of course, but you were understandibly paranoid at the point.

A flicker of movement at the edge of your vision catches your eye and you jump, very nearly breaking down the passage at that moment. It had turned out to be Shiroko's wing- and you were persuaded rather vocally to put her down and let her fly- which you do readily. Watching her flap off a ways in front of you, you turn to look at the impladed behemoth one last time. Just to be sure, you know.

For a moment, just for a moment, you had sworn it had moved. It had been Shiroko's wing after all, but...some things in Gensokyo had an annyoing habit of not dying when they were supposed to. And with that, you trail after your fairy companion, not particualrly keen on being left therre with that thing alone, catching up quickly as the elder Lily beckons to you with a wave, looking around, hovering a meter off the sodden earth and looking about disdainfully.

"Let's get a move on eh?" She encourages, stepping (flapping actually) in pace beside you. She stretches out a petite hand, directing the way. "There's airflow from up there, so we can get out- but something stinks..." her eyes narrow.

"Stinks?" you enquire, following the direction of her tiny pointed finger. Far far down the tunnel, the cavern's celing soars upwards suddenly, its apex hidden from your side in the almost unendning gloom. "I don't smell anything."

"Don't you?" Shiroko hisses, taking a few experimental flaps forward and upwards, conjuring up a few spheres of weak light to illuminate the place. Not as bright as her usual though, tired as she probably was.You shrug and add your share of light by flicking the switch on your torch.

That is one big pillar, you had to admit. Many very big pillars. You corrected yourself,.

Stretching to the very roof of the cavern, you briefly recall Tokyo's skyline. Except made of wood. Youu walk up to you cautiously and lightly brush its surface with your palm. It's wood alright, and with a shiver down your spine, you recall that the pillar nailing the cadaver to the wall looked like a minature version of the foundation pillars here.

Foundation pillars. Right. It was obvious they were holding something up, weren't they? But logic is ilargely gnored at the point, since your're more occupied with the other interesting sights and sounds of the place.

There! Embedded in solid basalt, was a ...train?

You walk up close for a more detailed inspection and much to your suprise it is a train. Really. Which is strange, since you had suspected hallucinations- seeing that the one other reason for the possible presence of trains in Gensokyo, Yukari was out of the equation for now. And the writing on the sides was in English? Not that you could tell. Some european babble no doubt.

"Tell me, Shiro," you speak slowly and carefully. "Am I seeing a train sticking our of this wall?"

"Ahh? That depends..." Shiroko shruggs, flipping her long tresses from where they had snagged a white wing. "What's a train anyway?"

"Eh, this thing here." You reply offhandedly. "It's empty though...I hope it was empty when it got here..."

"Mmm...lots of chairs." she comments, peering in with great interest. "It's a human "weapon" yes? They must have used a lot of steel to forge this. Don't like steel." She continues with a wince. Which is typically fairy like.

"I'm sure," you mutter, moving on.

Stop signs, cars, fence railings, traffic lights, memorial tablets, not to mention half a 747. All embedeed in various places in the cavern. Celings walls and in one place on the floor, an entire church's steeple, rising haphazardly out of the ground. You go cold, as pass that one, as you imagine seeing a pale woman seated forlornly upon a rusting traffic light.

"Heavens," you whisper, as a trickle of earth rains from far far above. Apparently, the place is less stable than it had looked, which explained the wooden pillars.

And as you continue, the feeling that something is not exactly right in a fundamental sense grows. For example, tiny barely noticable changes in direction- like walking in one direction, then suddenly altering your vector slightly to the left or right.

Barely perceptible, yet maddening. Or perhaps you're just paranoid?

Certain bits of the walls seem exactly the same as other bits of the walls. You're sure you've seen this train before, in exactly the same position a distance back, and as you carry on, the feeling that some parts of this place has been "copied and pasted" grows. Like a poorly made poster or something.

And twice, you see the pale lady once more, wan and sombre, just out of the corner of your vision and-

The world goes white and your ears ring. An explosion, you had descibed later.

The ground heaves and trembles as you fall, mind blank to the ground.

Something tears. Yet nothing does.

And like a blast from the sun, something errupts at the very far end of the cavern, bright enough to brand your retinas with pain and also allow you to appreciate how bleedy immense the patchwork cavern is, just before your vision goes white. It seemd to go on forever, you muse as Shiroko crouches near you, handing on for protection.

Hold on....just hold on, a voice whispers. Probably your own? You can't tell, but you do, one arm around Shiroko and the other holding Koishi securely as you are able. "For how long?" you wonder.

"Endure...you....can...." Someone whipsers. Shiroko?

And you do. Forever. It seemed.

Still, eternity ends and whiteness fades, and you finally open your eyes. You're staring up to the vast celing, no different except that its a smouldering cherry red now. You sit up, realized that you're sharing a blanket with Koishi- Shiroko's outer robes to be exact. Said girl is still unconcious, though soot blackened and so's the elder Lily's garments.

"Shiro?" you begin, mouth flapping numbly.

"Shhh!' Look!' Shiroko warns, pointing ahead. The fairy's seated next to you as well, white cap and inner garmets too soot grayed. "That was some booz!- and see! Over there!"

You move, groaning, noting that the cavern has beem expanded somehow- a new extension by the looks of it, blasted into solid rock, with the new walls smouldering and partially molten. You stare carefully as it cools and hardens, heat strong enough for you to feel it, at the distance that you are. Your skin tingles.

Not a good sign of things to come.

Especially with the sufficient lighting now. The patches of "copy and paste". Trains, cars, lights, planes...at this distance, the big picture, all those bits and pirces- the really big picture seen from afar...didn't it look quite like a mosiac of bit of Yukari's face?" Farmilair eyes gaze blanky far above you. An image, nothing more... an image... nothing more, you mumble. Was it?

"Yukari..." you mumble. "The boundary... It connected. An explosion of that scale, enough to affect the boundary? The would explain the bits and pieces of the outside world beginning to fall in...yet this wouldn't help you save her, would it? All you could do was helplessly watches as Yukari's domain was hammered by this tremendous power.

"Watch!" Shiroko squeals urgently as something else errupts from the ground. Far in the distance, pillars, rising to span the height of the cavern, till they impacted the celing with mightly crashes, preventing the place from caving in. And then, a vast shadow falls upon you, one of wings and power.

"Goddess! Give me more!' A hoarse voice screams, rebrevating about the cavern. "...Need...more..." the following croaked out, hoarse and terrible. "Break ...through the barrier...need more..."

There! In the distance, a tiny speck standing atop a broken pillar, screaming with all the power ti could muster. "Goddess!" it wails once more, as you huddle by Shiroko's side.

Said fairy jabs you in the arm, perhaps more urgently than required.

"What?" You retort, getting the better part of annoyed now. "If its isn't important, then let's move!" You say finally, reggaining some composure. Explosions, are bad. You'll retrace your steps and take the other path, and if that doesn't work, you'll go back further. You can't save Yukari like this, but you could have a better chance in a calm state of mind.

Of course its important!" Shiroko wails, flapping her wings agitatedly and getting herself another meter up in the air. "It's the vile scent- of AUTUMN!"

'Autumn?" you ask, picking up Koishi- no point saving her only to leave her here.

"Yes! Autumn- reeks of shoes and old snakes! Shhhhh!" Shiroko hisses. "Hide!" Shoving you down as a booming voice fills the chamber, drowning out even the cry of the hell bound creature.

"Little crow, little crow," the voice purrs, soft yet immense at the same time. "Come and get it."

A long rod of greyish material falls to the ground with a crash, from some unimaginable height. Not twenty meters from where the three of you lay.

"Eat...and grow strong..." the great voice purrs, sending chills down your spine.

Then, the rush of mighty wingbeats as something takes to the air and heads towards your general area.

[] Hide, huddle down with Shiroko and Koishi, and don't move.
[] Try to back track to the fork in the road.
[] Investigate the "rod", a quick look, before whtever it was that screamed out earlier gets here.
[] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosiac.

Feel free to write in.
Have fun
---------
>> No. 23290
[x] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosiac.

She's right there.
>> No. 23294
[X] Investigate the "rod", a quick look, before whatever it was that screamed out earlier gets here.
>> No. 23295
[x] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosiac.
>> No. 23297
Is it possible to steal the rod?
>> No. 23300
FFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUCK.
>> No. 23301
[x] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosiac.
>> No. 23312
[] Investigate the "rod", a quick look, before whtever it was that screamed out earlier gets here.

In order to save Yukari, we need power .
And what power is better that Nuclear power.
>> No. 23372
>>23312
I guess it's just like the old saying goes: 'Absolute power is pretty cool'

[X] Steal the 'rod' and try to use it yourself
>> No. 23373
For some reason, I suspect the rod is some sort of radioactive metal.
>> No. 23379
>>23312

Even if our lead melts in the process due to how radioactive that rod is?

And humans can not merely gain nuclear power by picking up a rod. Unless your name is Radioactive Man or Fallout boy.
>> No. 23380
[X] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosaic.

Big Sis is the Big Priority.
>> No. 23482
Okay. Let me start by saying I like this story. I've followed it on-and-off since it started, and I've enjoyed it. I find Landlord Anon to be a solid MC, I've enjoyed the author's portrayal of most of the girls, and I particularly like seeing the events of the last few games as witnessed by someone living on both sides of the border.

It is in the spirit of such that I feel compelled to call you out regarding the following. So without further ado:

>there is current the more important matter >to decide. And considering >decicion to carry on stright ahead >tepidation >paranoid at the point. >your eye and you jump, very nearly breaking down the passage at that moment. >impladed >therre >She encourages, stepping (flapping actually) in pace beside you. >you enquire >celing >flaps forward and upwards >Not as bright as her usual though >was.You >Many very big pillars. You corrected yourself,. >Except made of wood. >Youu walk up to you cautiously >logic is ilargely gnored at the point >a train sticking our of this wall? >Which is typically fairy like. >Stop signs, cars, fence railings, traffic lights, memorial tablets, not to mention half a 747. >Celings walls and in one place on the floor, an entire church's steeple, rising haphazardly out of the ground. >as pass that one >Barely perceptible, yet maddening. >Like a poorly made poster or something. >as you fall, mind blank to the ground. >how bleedy immense >seemd >handing on for protection >You sit up, realized that you're sharing a blanket >white cap and inner garmets too soot grayed >That was some booz! >has beem expanded somehow- >Farmilair >The would explain >All you could do was helplessly watches >Far in the distance, pillars, rising to span the height of the cavern, till they impacted the celing with mightly crashes, preventing the place from caving in. >rebrevating >There! >all the power ti could muster >reggaining >Explosions, are bad. >greyish material

...

What the fuck is this faggotry?

Run a goddamn spellcheck and proofread your shit. I don't care if it means waiting an extra day for updates, just do it. Seriously, what compelled you to post this as-is?

Are you pressed for time in real life? Re-think your schedule, or put this on hold until your holiday starts. Do you just not care anymore or find this story boring to write? In that case take some time off. Maybe go write a short on another board. Just do something to help yourself get back up to at least as good as you started.

I want to see this story continue. I want to know what happened to Yukari. I want to know where the MC and Sanae stand, and I want to see him get hit on by Suwako again. I want to see him argue with Marisa about inane shit, flirt with Patchouli, be a big brother to Chen, get embarrassed by Ran, and chat idly about the outside with Aya, Iku, and Tokiko.

I don't want this story to slow down any more than it has, and I most certainly don't want another story put on indefinite hiatus, but if that's what it takes to bring this story back to it's previous standard (or hopefully even better), then I'll wait.

I know you can do better than this. It's obvious considering that, up until the last few threads, the quality of your writing had actually been increasing. So go, do what you need to do in writing, in life, in whatever. Just please don't soil your story any further with the half-baked shit that's made up the last few updates.


Fellow readers, if you disagree with me, then by all means flame me down, and let the author know how you feel. Either way, he needs some fucking feedback here.

Self-sage for not actually voting.
>> No. 23512
>>23482

In fairness, I believe English is not Melancholy's first language. The faster pace of earlier updates might have been helping to keep him on his toes with the language, hence the decline after the delays began. That said, he could definitely stand to use a proofreader at the moment.

Or start updating quickly again, but I'm not asking for miracles.
>> No. 23517
>>23482
Thanks for being honest.

I didn't get a commercial word processor, so I swapped to openoffice after the trial peroid for word processing due to its affordability. Didn't manage to get the spell check up, yet.

As for updating, I would like to do so more frequently, but I've just got a job as a paramedic and as the new fellow, I'm subject o most of the night duties- for a few months at least.
>> No. 23532
>>23517

EMT-P or B?
>> No. 23546
>>23517

>Paramedic

That's awesome. You're awesome.
>> No. 23561
File 126097555016.jpg - (23.33KB , 345x389 , Para-medic.jpg ) [iqdb]
23561
>>23517
>> No. 23563
File 126097606869.jpg - (944.66KB , 1043x762 , 7a1c0c2ccb05835facd0953864cea9dc0b05ea6a.jpg ) [iqdb]
23563
Nothing great, just a quick update.

I've tried the spell chack and hpefully, the spelling will be less atrocious here.

---------
[] Somehow, you can sense a bit of Yukari here. Try to get to the molten mosaic.

In Gensokyo, the sound of wing beats is usually the herald of one of a few scenarios.

A popular story circulating amongst the tavern patrons of Gensokyo's town is that of the lovestruck Tengu. Swooping down for a quick peek at the object of her ( for some odd reason the lovestruck tengu is never a “he”) affections; she never really finishes summoning up the courage to, well, stop and say “Hi”, to cut a long and well embellished story short, and flies off even said person takes any notice.

Rather laughable really, especially for the denizens of the mountain villages near the Tengu fortress- or to anyone who's known a few tengu in his or her time. Seeing that Tengu don't have wings, although the wolf variety do have tails and species appropriate ears. Also noting that the Tengu on a whole are a rather direct and forward race of youkai, with a strong warrior tradition, with subtle yet almost ridiculously direct means of courtship, makes the previous story little more than a fanciful daydream.

Besides, you could have never imagined Aya in that sort of situation. Or Momiji. This isn't a love comedy after all. Which brings you back to the other, more common reason.

The second, and undoubtedly more realistic explanation for descending wing beats would be that a large and particularly hungry flying youkai was descending upon you, and that it would be best to pull out your weapon for a fight, or to run away and seek shelter at the nearest farmstead or cross the boundary into one of the safe roads.

And unfortunately, the second explanation seems about just right...was it you, or was the whole place getting brighter?

You look down, with Shiroko's eyes looking back at you, in confusion- eyes ablaze with the ruddy red-yellow of something molten, and growing in intensity. Not a good sign, really. And you'd best not be caught standing out in the open, like an idiot when whatever it was reached this place.

You look up as an iridescent projectile sails past, far off target (you assumed that the target had been you or Shiroko) impacting the earth and throwing up a clod of charred soil. Not a good sign, all things considered. You decide to get out of the area, as quickly as your feet can take you. Not that you could outrun a flying youkai- or even battle it to a standstill. That's a job for more qualified people who just so happen not to be here right now, much to your detriment.

“Now! Behind the pillar!'

Had it been you who yelled? You can really recall, since you're rather preoccupied with getting your body behind the nearest pillar, and lugging Koishi's dead weight along with you. And gasping for breath and heart pounding you reach about the wooden surface and grab Shiroko's arm, pulling her around the thing as she flits after you somewhat bemusedly. And just in time too. A thump indicates something has landed on the far side of the pillar's broad base.

You swear.

But not because of whats on the other side of the pillar. Whatever it was, it came accompanied with the sound of feather ruffling and a horrid grinding, scraping sound of something scratching against metal. But it was not important. Because...because...

An abstract of Yukari was one thing, but- when the molten mess on the far side of the massive cavern spells out I Am hErE when it had not done so earlier, you know that something is seriously wrong with reality- and in this case, the boundary defined the length and breath of Gensokyo, and thus, the space and matter within. And Yukari manipulated the boundary- to a degree.

This cold reason came later of course, with the benefit of hindsight- of how amazingly stupid you were behaving back down in that hell pit.

Never mind that molten granite and basalt would be in the thousands of degrees high in temperature.

Never mind that you've just ducked past cover to expose your back to a ravenous unknown.

Never mind that the damned wall was several kilometers in the distance away.

You had just stepped out, rather stunned and bemused, leaving Koishi with a frantic Shiroko- who's attempts to restrain you had failed miserably. Just an attempted grab at your hand, but from a fairy, that was something. You do recall waving her hand away as you dart out of cover, and towards your objective, with every intent on running there on foot.

Inevitably, there's a yell, or a a screech of sheer fury- like that of an animal whose territory you've just violated and Shiroko's cry of warning- then.

“Idiot boy.” A gruff yet ladylike voice whispers into your ear, and suddenly, you rise, borne upwards by massive force, even as your cry out, arms flailing and nearly...er never mind. You swear you see someone, yet you impact nothing but air and wind.

“You! Shoo! Begone! No eggs for you!' Another voice cries out- this one vaguely familiar. “Shoo!!”

But still, something impacts you from behind, and suddenly you find yourself rocked in mid air, locked in a furious battle of tooth and nail and feathers. Something clamps down on your hand hard. Skin breaks and blood flows, even as the wind picks up, swirling around you and your assailant angrily.

“Last chance, let go or-”

“Behave, Raven, or face-”

Two voice yell simultaneously.

[] Punch.
[] Beat your assailant with the most solid object in your harness.
[] Let your rescuers do their job?
[] Bite back.
[] Yell, “Hey! Stop!”

Fell free to write in sensibly.
---
>> No. 23564
>I've tried the spell chack and hpefully, the spelling will be less atrocious here.

We love you and all, but man.
>> No. 23566
[x] Let your rescuers do their job?
>> No. 23567
[x] Beat your assailant with the most solid object in your harness.
>> No. 23574
>>23564

Yes. Ironic, isn't it?
>> No. 23575
>>23546
>>23561

Hope you like movies, Snake.
>> No. 23576
>>23575
Why did i laugh
>> No. 23577
[x] Beat your assailant with the most solid object in your harness.
Tired of being helpless.
>> No. 23578
>>23577

Then the lovely camera Aya gifted us shatters when we slam it into the attacker's head, leaving us even more vulnerable than before, and eventually pissing off Aya.

[X] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[X] Now shut up, and let your rescuers do their job?
-[X] ... But stay observant, and look for any opportunities to break free.

Landlordnon is not an action hero. His only real weapon is being clever from time to time, which is not liable to get him out of this. Best to just let his rescuers try to save him, and keep an eye out for an opportunity to get out of all this.
>> No. 23579
[X] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[X] Now shut up, and let your rescuers do their job?

What >>23578 said. Removing the last option because, last I checked, we're grappling said hellspawn in mid-air. Unless we're still close to the ground, a few bites will hurt a lot less than gravity.


>I've tried the spell chack and hpefully, the spelling will be less atrocious here.
ಠ_ಠ
The update itself did have significantly fewer errors, so it's a step in the right direction.
>> No. 23582
[x] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[x] Now shut up, and let your rescuers do their job?
>> No. 23584
[x] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[x] Now shut up, and let your rescuers do their job?
>> No. 23604
[X] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[x] Beat your assailant with the most solid object in your harness.
>> No. 23665
[x] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hellspawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."
[x] Bite back with the force of a thousand teeth.

a bite for a bite
an eye for an eye
eye am strongest
>> No. 23690
>>23574
Do you plan on updating Native Faith anytime in the future? Just wondering.
>> No. 24014
[B] Beat your assailant with the most solid object in your harness.
>> No. 24016
File 126252360871.jpg - (966.74KB , 1755x1037 , 38b15bf3c6bb8bb9934778f6f993297d.jpg ) [iqdb]
24016
Firstly, I apologize for the long delay. Its been two weeks and slightly more, and I'm busier than ever. But writing is relaxing and I wish I had more time to do it- and drawing too. But sadly, circumstances dictate otherwise.

But thanks for sticking with me thus far.

>>23690
Sadly,no. I've my hands full right now, and one story is as much as I am willing to manage right now.

-----
[x] "My sister vanishes, my friends piss people off, the underground is filled with violent, unreasonable folks, and now some hell-spawn is biting me. Great. You're making this a great day for me. So considerate."

Ceiling and ground invert, and the molten rock in the distance spins dreadfully filling your vision with splotches of red and gray and whatnot. Strands of green, and strands of raven fly past every other way, fluttering irritatingly past you, as two pairs of strong hands latch on to you, and pull, both in opposite directions. On your left, talons dig in, getting a yell of pain and frustration out of you, as you...ah...lose your temper, or so to say.

Deciding that the assailant on your left is being the most irritating of the lot, you somehow, despite the aerial acrobatics which you are so wholly unsuited for, manage to twist about uncomfortably, and grab a length of long raven hair. Long, smelly raven hair, black and rich as crude oil and just as oily. Making you, want to wipe said hand down with a towel or something. But, you could save it for later. For now, power levels, ability of self powered flight, sheer physical prowess be damned to hell. For now, to get your satisfaction, you'll have to bludgeon something, preferably with something heavy.

But, looking at the rather unfavorable circumstances, you'll happily settle for punching your offender hard. And, happy coincidence, tugging the raven hair gets you a frantic yell, or rather a screech of pain. Suddenly, the taloned hands lose their grip and tear away, spiraling out of control as whoever it was flailed wildly, as you're suddenly aware of powerful wings battering you with every beat, getting stronger and stronger as your assailant tries to break away. And brings herself face to face with you, mid flight.

For a split second, you stare on, with golden eyes staring right back into yours. A smudged, petulant face contorted into an expression of bewildered shock, framed with raven (and greasy) hair, which looked like it hadn't been washed for a week.

Onee-san vanishes, and the whole lot of us can't find a way to fix the situation in a reasonable manner. Point one. The people here are more unreasonable than your average lawyer, point two. Now you- YOU want a piece of me? Oh that's it alright. You think, getting rather angry in retrospect. That's it.

It's mouth parted, partly in response to your fierce gaze, and partly because of your tugging of her hair, her gaze wavers in contest with your- finally a small victory you claim for yourself. Though you don't particularly care. You draw back your arm. This is it.

A good blow, you would think, impacting nicely against one startled cheek with a satisfying thump. Oh it wouldn't really hurt the youkai much - they were youkai of course and anything short of the surest strike with a proper weapon or having decades of honing ones physical prowess behind your punch like some of Gensokyo's martial arts practitioners wouldn't really keep her down for long. But it would get her off you for a second though

And that's where it all goes wrong.

The wings, see, those damned horrible smelling wings, stinking of wet feathers and some metallic tang, spread out to their full length- and they are massive indeed, especially in comparison with the girl they belong to- seeming to be larger than their owner herself- and perhaps out of reflex perhaps, and flaps with all her apparent might.

Now, danmaku is preferred for reasons other than the lack of fatality s as well, another outstanding reason being the disorientation one faces when up close and personal in the air. In this case, the raven youkai's “up”, was in fact “down” and your “down”- and the peoples helping you “down” was actually “up” and well...that's the gist of it.

You- or they, might have noticed, except for the seemingly all encompassing wings, blocking line of sight and being all around distracting. Or perhaps, if not for the adrenaline rush, you could have felt the nausea of gravity taking its toll on you. Then, someone shouts, “Sanae! Up!”

“And another's voice replies, “Right! Up!” in an increasingly desperate tone. You continue your present course- though quite unaware of your closeness to serious injury at the time. Hindsight however, corrected that quite nicely.

“What are you doing! Go up! UP!” A quick reminder.

But, it's quite a tardy warning- the frenzy of battle and all. You had no way to know you were merely meters away from a hard landing.

But back at that time, all you could recall was the frenzied beatts of your assailant's wings and the satisfying squawk of surprise and the feeling of accelerates, and of something soft pushing firmly against your back- not unpleasantly- towards the ever elusive “up”. No doubt, wondering why against rules of magic, she was supporting your weight in flight...except that she wasn't supporting anything at all.

But for a moment, everything just seemed fine.

Until at least, the both of you hit something with a thud.

This, naturally provokes a yet another yell of pain, quite understandably- that was quite a fall you had moments ago. But not from you. You're too out of breath to even mumble or moan, screaming being a little beyond your abilities right now. And then, a hand impacts your chest, palm first, forcing you off, and your vision swims once more as you roll off whatever that was, with so very little resistance, smacking good solid ground back first, till you come to a stop, eye clenched shut, teeth gritted and mouth tasting of salty earth.

Not a good way to feel alive.


You open your eyes, noting at once, an uncomfortable pressure on your chest- and an uncomfortable warmth. Even more so than the original radiant heat you had felt for the longest time in this underground hell. Something's sitting on you- and sure enough, a mass of tangled black and green appears seated, planted firmly straddling your chest, and pressing down upon you like the demented youkai that it is.

It feels like you're sitting way too close to an overheating radiator- comparable to Yukari's faulty gasoline fueled kotasu- that one had nearly burnt down part of Mayohiga back when you were eight. Not good memories. Not good heat either, just barely tolerable in fact, verging on pain, but not actually painful or burning – yet.

It cocks its head, tilitng it as if curious, giving you an impression of a curious bird. But otherwise regards you rather impassibly, making no move to attack or to retreat. Well, that'll give you time to compose yourself- noth that you have many options right at the time. So you just focus, on recovering a tiny bit.

You blink, clearing your vision a tiny bit and giving you a better look at the youkai bearing down upon yourself.

Long smelly hair, large smelly wings. You note. And a previously unnoticed bow of green fabric, planted rgiht in the midst of her bird's nest of a hair tangle. Tattered and as filthy as the rest of its owner, it could have done with a good wash....as with the rest of its owner. You could nearly laugh. Thinking about this? Now?

Not good. Really.

Golden eyes, actually glowing in the gloom peer at you curiously. Her face is shrouded in the massive tangle of hair and there is dirt smudged on most of the creature's visible skin, so there's not much to see, but rancid breath hits your nostrils, accompanied by loud breathing. A tattered blouse clothes the torso - nothing much to see here, she's normal in that aspect- though, there's a sort of what you would describe as a red glass fish eye lens displayed prominently in the middle of her chest.

Knowing Gensokyo though, that thing probably isn't made of glass.

“Ey human, you, eye up here huh?” A hoarse and raspy voice speaks, coming from the shadow darkened face. The face lowers close to yours revealing more dirt caked skin, and tired looking eyes with dark kings around them, the expression thoughtful, as if thinking on what to say next. “Up here ah.” she repeats.

Oh it speaks.

Er...oh, she speaks.



[]...Hello?
[] Shove the offender off.
[] ...Heaven. You need a bath.
[] Or if you would take your eyes off that shiny red glass for a moment, you could note that a disheveled green haired figure is staggering to her feet just behind your more obvious threat.
[] Or, you could come up with something creative. Talk your way out with your all natural charm.
[]...Punch her in the face again.
[] That red glass thing...you have to touch it.
[][][][]

Feel Free to write in sensibly.
----
>> No. 24017
[x]...Hello?
-[x] You must to ask about that red thing.
Distractions distractions.
>> No. 24018
[x]...Hello?
-[x] You must to ask about that red thing.
>> No. 24020
[x] Say hello and kindly ask for her to get off of you.
[x] Perhaps ask about what she knows about things.
[x] Then perhaps ask about that red thing.
[x] As far as that green haired girl, perhaps help her up as to thank her for more or less saving you, and she might know more of what's going on as well.
>> No. 24022
[X]...Hello?
-[X] You must to ask about that red thing.

I would vote to touch it, but that would probably be instant bad end.
>> No. 24023
[X] Say hello and kindly ask for her to get off of you.
[X] Perhaps ask about what she knows about things.
-[X] Then perhaps ask about that red thing.
[X] As far as that green haired girl, perhaps help her up as to thank her for more or less saving you, and she might know more of what's going on as well.
>> No. 24024
[x]...Hello?
-[x] You must to ask about that red thing.
>> No. 24038
We need to retain our angry. Something along the lines of "What the hell is going on, get the hell off me, and who the hell are you?"

But phrased better and asking more questions that need to be asked.

Anybody got anything about like that?
>> No. 24040
Wait.

Maybe I'm misinterpreting this, but did they wipe our memories?

I told you we should have left that damn girl aside.
>> No. 24047
>>24038
Well the other vote is classic Anon stupidity while >>24020 is my attempt at things. The intent is to take advantage of the fact that said bird-girl (That could tear us to shreds if she wanted) seems spaced out as to get out from under her and find out what might be going on.

after we find things out, then we let the anger loose.

>>24040
I think he's just a bit loopy from the whole thing.
>> No. 24048
>Ey human, you, eye up here huh?
And now I will be unable to stop hearing your Utsuho speak in a thick British accent.

>>24040
I am not sure if the odd narrative in this update was intentional, to denote how badly we are unable to determine "up" from "down" right now, a pacing concern, or a language concern on ????'s part. A really good effect, any way it goes. Likewise, occasionally, I do get suspicious that that "was told later" portions indicate a future scene in which we are telling this story of our story to a third party.

[+] ... Hello?
[+] Shove the offender off.
[+] Draw Ran's pistol at the youkai
-[+] "Attacking with this would hurt you more than it would my wrist. Stay back."
[+] Start with the rambled questioning, including 'about that red thing'
>> No. 24166
>>24048

Er, that was uspposed to be an approximation of a Russian accent. Oh well.
>> No. 24167
Honestly why would Utsuho have a Russian accent?
>> No. 24171
>>24167
Chernobyl.
>> No. 24185
[X] Say hello and kindly ask for her to get off of you.
[X] Perhaps ask about what she knows about things.
-[X] Then perhaps ask about that red thing.
[X] As far as that green haired girl, perhaps help her up as to thank her for more or less saving you, and she might know more of what's going on as well.
>> No. 24187
[X]...Hello?
-[X] You must ask about that red thing.

I love Utsuho. Even a filthy, unwashed Utsuho.

We should give her a bath later.
>> No. 24222
>>24187

I agree! Except not so much "give her a bath" as "hold her head underwater and see if we get the Cherenkov effect".

[+] ... Hello?
[+] Shove the offender off.
[+] Draw Ran's pistol at the youkai
-[+] "Attacking with this would hurt you more than it would my wrist. Stay back."
[+] Start with the rambled questioning, including 'about that red thing'
>> No. 24223
>>24222
If anything turns blue, it'd be the eyeboob. And then we'd attack it for massive damage.

[X] ...Hello?
[X] Shove the offender off.
[X] Draw Ran's pistol at the youkai.
-[X] "Attacking with this would hurt you more than it would my wrist. Stay back."
[X] Start with the rambled questioning, including 'about that red thing'.
>> No. 24225
>>24167
I was confused too, but after some thought and some fapping I realized that a russian on Okuu is really hot.
>> No. 24226
>Shove the offender off.
>Shove the youkai with superhuman strength far outweighing your own, because it will totally get her off of you if she has no intention of moving.

Good one.

>Draw Ran's pistol at the youkai.
>Draw Ran's pistol on the living nuclear weapon when she has the advantage, and hasn't displayed open hostility yet.

Stop, stop, you're killing me!

Seriously, it's been said before, but Landlordnon is not an action hero. Being that brash is just going to get him hurt.
>> No. 24227
>>24226

Too bad it seems whoever's voting this hasn't read the story; that and it'd be easier to convince her to get off by talking (she seems quite spaced out after all)

Sure Landlordanon might be angry, but not to the point it'd rendered him suicidally stupid.

>>24020 is a good example of a direction to go in.
>> No. 24229
[B] Say hello and kindly ask for her to get off of you.
[B] Perhaps ask about what she knows about things.
[B] Then perhaps ask about that red thing.
[B] As far as that green haired girl, perhaps help her up as to thank her for more or less saving you, and she might know more of what's going on as well.
>> No. 24396
[x] "...Hello~"
[x] "You've got red on you."
>> No. 24459
[X]...Hello?
-[X] You must to ask about that red thing.
>> No. 24478
File 126409000282.png - (314.46KB , 1700x1800 , 4886b8f87ab2539b4b178f2f5dda5ceb.png ) [iqdb]
24478
I'm late. I apologize.
---
[]...Hello?
[] Shove the offender off.
[] ...Heaven. You need a bath.
[] Or if you would take your eyes off that shiny red glass for a moment, you could note that a disheveled green haired figure is staggering to her feet just behind your more obvious threat.
[] Or, you could come up with something creative. Talk your way out with your all natural charm.
[]...Punch her in the face again.
[] That red glass thing...you have to touch it.
[][][][]


[] Say hello and kindly ask for her to get off of you.
[] Perhaps ask about what she knows about things.
[] Then perhaps ask about that red thing.
[] As far as that green haired girl, perhaps help her up as to thank her for more or less saving you, and she might know more of what's going on as well.

Silence, if it could truly be considered silence deafened you for a moment. Echoing off in the distance, the dry rustle of falling loose earth mingled with the dull thunder of expanding rock in the background made for an oddly appropriate theme for your little situation. Little situation- you could have laughed out loud at that, not that you particularly wanted to. Not with your back, flat down in the warm muck, your chest raw and breathing heavy. All around exhaustion and not to mention, something- someone sitting right there on you with the most wide eyed expression you've ever seen right on her face.

It reminded you, if only a little, of Ren- when she had woken up half way through calculus, eyes popped wide open and strained, blank and more than a little uncomprehending.

But there, the similarities ended. Ren had deigned to take a bath twice every day- at the very least. That and Ren would never be this forward- with anyone. And of course Ren didn't have wings either or strength enough to stop your arm from rising.

And a mouth full to the brimming with a kind of yellow and white mush.

...that had explained her muffled “accent” earlier at the least. And, brings you to another,problem- less pressing, but still....

You had to speak sooner or later anyway. In case of the off chance that the youkai got bored of the situation and decide to eat you instead. Or just end you. The great majority of Youkai being feral and otherwise unintelligent, and more commonly, those with a childish intelligence- piquing a curious interest was a means of staying on this side of the higan- for a time.

So, you put your natural charisma to work...talking to strange youkai the abridged Ran's lecture version, still echoing in your head from all those years ago.

Rule one, show respect befitting her stature. A respectful greeting, to be initiated by yourself. Some youkai feel that it's their due after all, and though you may beg to differ... You ( you supposed she was refferring to humans in general) have a better mind than most youkai- use it to your best advantage. Or so Ran had said once.

“Eh...hello? Miss?” You venture, expectantly, voice not as strong and confident as you would have liked. Hardly more than a hoarse whisper had you a mind to judge at that moment. The best you could have managed though, you receive no reply other than her edging closer to you, not in a comfortable way at all.

Very charming.

You pause a moment, trying to gauge where you stand in this whole mess. Have you made a good impression? You wonder. As her baleful eyes gaze into yours, silent once more. But not at all at ease- not a good thing. At least she's not dripping chewed egg onto you now, having shut her mouth at least. But other than that...nothing. All else you've managed to to is to get that green indistinct figure in the back ground to flop to the ground, and shake her head despondently.

Two hands rise, moving to your face and sharp nails dig in, causing you to draw a gasp involuntarily- a slow trickle of something follows. Dripping down the side of your face most uncomfortably, seemingly taking forever to fall from your person. And she still doesn't speak! Infuriating youkai- sitting there, on you no less, digging for most unclean fingernails into your face.

“Excuse me, that is quite painful, you know.” you speak out.

Your hand rises to grasps her slim wrist- firmly and gently if possible. Rule two on Youkai negotiations- never seem threatening. Not unless you've the power to back it up. And you don't.

So you strain and strain and finally – and gently, she relents. Though, it is fairly obvious that she's letting go because she wants to and not because your efforts are having any perceivable effect on her at all. And you must admit that you let go of her fairly rapidly when she glanced down at her wrist, showing as much interest in the odd little thing grabbing on to her as she did anything else.

If anything else, she seems to lose interest, looking around confusedly as if fixing her mind on something else, her eyes distant and hazy, as you sit there, in the dirt wondering just what in the world is wrong with this particular youkai girl. Wings flap idly as she sits there, apparently deep in consideration of some unknown matter- you wouldn't call it thought in any sense. With her eyes glazed over and her blank expression, she looks more dazed than anything else.

Excuse me, you're the one who's been battered and bitten and scratched and...

So why's she dazed?

Questions questions. No time for questions. If Miss Youkai here is going to sit in plain view and ignore you, so be it. You're under no obligation ( except the fact that she's sitting on you) to indulge her. Onee-san needs saving, and you are going to do your best ( which is something Chen would say – and you as well it seems) and save the...well, first things first, getting out from under the dazed girl's abnormally heavy weight.

Honestly, she's slender and skinny as a rail- asides from the wings of course, but, she's sure is hard to move.

And you try- and a firm hand against your chest firmly impedes your efforts.

“...eye contact...”she mumbles, spraying more debris.

'Ah. Finally she speaks again.”

“Excuse me, I-” You begin. “I-”

Eyes flicker back to life, snapping wide open. She takes a swallow, gulping loudly, sending her half masticated meal down.

“Eh? You're not scared of me?” She gaps finally.

“Er...no?”

That was a lie, naturally. You're petrified and would have gone for the pistol had she not been sitting you you, diplomacy be dammed. Its a wonder your voice is as steady as it is.

“Eh?” She stops and pauses, looking puzzled dazed and confused. A look that would have been at home on Cirno's face- like the time when Keine sensei had taught from a scavenged middle school text book. The resemblance is uncanny indeed, though you didn't have time to dwell on that thought. Youkai eyes widen as she claps her hands together, visibly excited, face breaking into a grin.

“Wha...what?” You splutter as she stands and hauls you up with her, shaking with excitement or something.

“I...I did it!” She crows.” “I did it!”

“What is going on? You mind telling me?” you ask, to no one in particular- seeing that she's too caught up in her little victory dance to pay you much mind. The red thing on her shirt glows too, ominous and quite contrasting to her mood. Eerie... even for the underworld.

You could throw your hands up in frustration.

“What is that thing anyway?” you wonder, looking at it. It's by far more interesting than the rest of her, you would say. It stares back- but you've expected that. Miss Moriya's hat, hah! After that, this was mild enough. Still eerie though.

'That's Okuu!” The girl speaks, quite suddenly, and out of the blue. One minute dancing and another, looking at you once more, too close for comfort.

“Ah...” you mumble, mouth quite dry. You're only sure that you're not too sure what to make of this. “And you are?...” At least negotiations were underway. Well, at least introductions. You wouldn't really call this negotiations at all.

“...? I'm Okuu....so...ah...I guess that's Okuu too.” she snaps. Pointing to herself, specifically, that red thing. “Simple enough? Oh?....er....Yeah. That's Okuu. I'm sure, so you can be sure too.Er...this is Okuu too...because I'm Okuu” She nods, pointing to her arm. “Say hi.” She orders finally. “...to....Okuu.”

“...Hi...?” You'll play along, you suppose. Odd girl. Probably demented. “...Okuu.”

Her face brightens, turning to a very grin of delight. You're quite taken aback and that's an understatement. You're astounded, really. Small “eh he he he” sounds are quite audible. For some reason, this girl is now quite suddenly, pleased. She's definitely demented. You're sure of it.

A hand shoots out, suddenly. You flinch. An attack? A gesture of submission? No. She's petting your head. You feel a bit offended really. That gesture is reserved for Ran and Yukari and on occasions, Chen. Not strange youkai girls in the middle of what is effectively hell. “And what's this about? Care to explain?” you ask, a fair bit testily. That had irritated you more than you would have liked to admit.

“Eh he he, silly! You're my pet now. Caught you....eye contact....eh....pet...Satroi.....same things. So You're my pet.” She squeals, much to your horror. “ Hee... Okuu's pet.” she adds, just for good measure.

Pet? Oh hell.

The green haired figure rises, looking none too happy as well. Green hair. Miko's gi and skirt- hakama meld. A very familiar and very abashed face, blushing crimson. Why is she here? You would thank her- and then grill her for answers, but it isn't the time now.

[] Make “help me” gestures to Sanae.
[] “Me? A pet?” Answer imperilously.
[] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?
[] Less talk, more shooting. Pistol time.
[] Add Sanae's fire power to yours. Less talk more shooting.
[] “I can't be your pet, Okuu. It's a requirement for Owners to be smarter than their pets.” If she's as dumb as that...

-----
Feel free to write in sensibly.
-------
>> No. 24479
[x] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?
>> No. 24480
[x] Make “help me” gestures to Sanae.
>> No. 24482
[x] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?
If she really is that dumb, then this should work.
-[x] Try to order Sanae, with signs, to standby.
If she really is her pet, then she must have enough power to tear you to pieces in a second. That said, she really is fucking disgusting. I mean, a half chewed egg? Good lord, I'm gonna throw up.
>> No. 24483
[x] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?
>> No. 24485
[x] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?
>> No. 24487
[B] “I can't be your pet, Okuu. It's a requirement for Owners to be smarter than their pets.” If she's as dumb as that...
>> No. 24489
[X] “I can't be your pet, Okuu. It's a requirement for owners to be smarter than their pets.” If she's as dumb as that...
[X] Ran's not here, so it's up to us to do the outfoxing. Keep handy your LOGIC! and silver tongue.
>> No. 24490
[X] By deduction, she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet... can they?

Watch her pause to puzzle this out.
>> No. 24491
[x] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they?
-[x] Sign to Sanae for some help when Okuu's distracted by the question.
>> No. 24492
[ℤℯ] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet. ...Can they ?
>> No. 24648
[x] Add Sanae's fire power to yours. Less talk more shooting.
>> No. 25140
File 126633196790.jpg - (211.87KB , 1200x848 , おくう.jpg ) [iqdb]
25140
I apologize for the long delay. I broke my arm. If I told you how, you wouldn't believe me.

It wasn't too bad though and I tried drawing again- lack of practice- and it didn't translate well to color.
--------
[] By deduction...she's Satori's pet. A pet can't own a pet....can they ?

You look at the eager creature standing before you, wide eyed and as energetic as Chen would ever be. She's clearly excited – almost like a slightly dull kid who;'s been presented with a pet...!! Come to think of it, it is exactly like a slightly dull kid who's been presented with a pet! The way she leans forward slightly, hands clenched and hair tousled all over her head like some sort of bird's nest – she's clearly excited about the whole thing, the greyish metal rod she had been going for a few moments ago lying quite forgotten many meters away.

A hand reaches out, and grasps your hair – you wince as sharp talons scour ( more along the lines of long untrimmed nails) your scalp, and a dreadful strength forces you down. You try to resist, but your knees buckle and you bend under the force of the youkai's arm. You left knee hits the earth, digging into the muck with an unpleasant noise, and you look up fiercely, gritting your teeth angrily. She's just standing there, reddish glass thing at your face level. An obvious weak spot? And what's she doing anyway? Showing dominance? If she thinks you'll be so dominated by her show of strength that you'll...

...Wait a second here. Blank expression, eyes frightfully devoid of thought, and soft cooing noises emanating from her grime stained lips... She doesn't seem malicious at all, well, apart from the previous episode of screeching ripping and mid air wrestling of course. The pressure lifts for a second, then it forces down again, and again...Good Grief! Is that demented creature petting you?

You look closely. Wings flapping gently, tossing her earth stained cloak about and showing you with flakes of grime. It had been white once, you suspected, despite how ti looked now, with splotches of dirt and muck what seemed to be industrial waste all over her attire.

She is petting you. No, you don't like it. Especially with that stench emanating off her. Its amazing she hasn't collapsed yet. Knock herself out, like when Cirno tried to ferment her own pickles back in your earlier days. Either way, she'll stop now, if you have anything to say about it.

You grab her hand, uprising yourself even, that you'd been able to do so. Your shoulders ache but incredily, withstand the youkai's dreadful petting strength. A proud achievement for mankind, you supposed, not that anyone would know of it. Amazingly though, while someone else might pause for thought, her hand continues its forceful downwards motion. Her eyes narrow. Evidently, she's going to pet you – not matter what.

So stalemate.

The two off you , standing there, arms locked in place, her's above your head, like the unstoppably determined prospective pet owning youkai she is, and there's yourself. The resistance, the underdog. And unlike those games you've played on occasion, you don't have much chance of winning. Sanae, just stands there, looking torn between amusement and worry. Well... at least with her there you've a miniscule chance of making it out alive. A small shriveled feathered white and brown creature joins her. Shiro, splattered with mud. All's well then. Hopefully she won't feel up to a spring-spam just yet. You're in the blast radius.

“What're you doing?” She asks, most unhelpfully, spreading and shaking soiled wings.

Isn't it obvious? You wonder, arms struggling against the nigh unresistable force. And why don't you ask Sanae instead? Since the both you are going to stand there like dummies and not help. And in a way, you didn't want they're help! Irrational? Yes, but...this little ...scatter brained and stoned in addition, not to mention dull as a brick, for all she's done...you want to beat her yourself. To win in fair contest.

Suicidal, yes, and liable get you an interview with the Yama. But you don't like feeling insignificant- and besides, by deduction this Okuu here belongs to that nutty little blue girl, whatever her name was- Satori or something. Pet's do not own pets. That's logic. And you're not a pet anyway. Except that shikigami can have shikigami – but that's different...isn't it?

You quickly tire. Your knees threaten to collapse from under you and your arms tremble from their exertion. You're not muscular in any sense, but you're not deficient either and...and... Your opponent appears unfrazzled as ever, much to your ire. In fact, the only thing missing from that face of her's would be a trail of drool. Dull as ever – she isn't even trying is she? You turn, and Sanae meets your eyes. Her mouth open slightly, before closing again. Then she swallows and turns away, saying nothing. You growl inwardly, and return to your task at hand.

Your fundamental mistake, taking this head on. Humans out think youkai...

Would it work? You're too tired anyway. Exerting your last bits of effort, you raise her hand a fraction and step out of the way.

It works, as much as you would have expected, and her arms swings downward, resistance gone. She stops short and stares- stares for a moment, uncomprehending. Then she whips to face you, both arms reaching out so quickly that you fear for your life. But Sanae is there, and Shiro as well – they're alongside you in an instant, pulling the youkai back, if futily, she shakes free and grabs your shoulders, meeting you eye to eye.

It seems you've provoked a reaction.

'Whats the problem!?!” she yells, shaking you like a doll. “I'm petting you already!”

“Don't be so fussy- okay?”

You nearly meet your forehead with your hand. Good grief.

“Look,, er Okuu...” you venture.

“Okuu-sama!” she corrects indigently, shaking you further, much to your distress.

“What? What for?” you yell, diplomacy and tact flying out the proverbial window. Sanae's here to back you up anyway! (Technically incorrect. The inverse is more likely true- and you'd be more of a hindrance)

“Well!! Okuu calls Satori-sama, Satori-sama you know! And Okuu is me so...so you have to call me Okuu-sama as well!..and Okuu likes to be petted too you know! So, so-”

“Eh?” You're about to speak but Okuu cuts you off with a poke.

“Okuu is trying to be nice to you but...but....My patience ease Not Lim-Unlimited!” She scolds, very nearly approaching a shriek. With dark rings about here eyes and all that dirt, she's disconcerting, to say the very least. Especially to have her raving at one's person. She's uncomfortably warm, nothings changed there – but you've never actually seen steam pouring from someone's ears before.

Not in a comedic way however. She has some strange domain of power, you observe. Fire based, in all probability. Come on now – all this magma and explosions, plus the steam and high temperatures in the bowels of the netherworld; the hellfire mantle, the furnace of Avichi itself?

...What a time to be brave...

“Okuu,” you say, as firmly and gently as you can manage. “I can't be your pet. Pet's can't own pets.” You neglect to mention that Shikigami and bind Shikigami. Knowledge is power. Heh.

“Why not?” She wails.

You could have, with time come up with a superbly eloquent answer, that would have impressed Yukari greatly, but with your time constraints, you'll have to fall back on... Dealing with Cirno had resulted in quite a number of replies to such questions, each as general as the last. Though...Okuu did not seem to be very bright either.

“Because the rules say so.” You answer shortly. Sanae freezes.

“What rules??” Okuu gasps, eyes widening angrily. “Satori-sama has rules...but...but...”

“You mean you didn't know?” you gasps. Theatrics. Hand to brow..., slight twist and half bow of “shock. “Play along!” you hiss towards Sanae.

“Yes! Okuu, he's right.!” Sanae adds quickly, jumping and looking about nervously. Ah, now you remember why she had left the drama club with such speed back then. “Rules! Right?”

Okuu looks at her, pleadingly. “You mean...?” She mouths.

“Yes!” you jump into the fray, gesturing grandly and trying not to, well, collapse. Good people follow the rules! Right, Sanae?” You continue, putting some emphasis on the Sanae part.

“...Yeah....” She finishes finally.

“So...miko is a good girl?” the Youkai asks, seemingly less threatening by the moment.

Sanae stares at you for a moment. She shakes her head.

“Do it!” you mouth.

She sighs. “Yes...Sanae is a good girl.” She did glare at you though.

“So that means! That means! You're not my pet too!” Okuu very nearly wails. “Okuu is! Okuu is a!” she yells, steam pouring from her, like some sort of malfunctioning engine. “ I want! Want!” Getting more and more agitated by the second. Then she pauses. Stopping dead, fixing you with baleful eyes. Her breathing heavy with exhaled steam- acrid and hot, you could have sworn you felt your skin cells dying off.

“Oh no! “ Sanae mumbles.

“Oh what?” you hiss, not daring to speak too loud.

But the conversation doesn't proceed much further than that.

Eyes alight, Okuu stands stock still, steam venting from her like a hell born meltdown – arms trembling and legs straightened, her wings flapping, sending gusts of hot air which causes your clothing to ripple and Sanae's skirt to ride up – and she making all sorts of growls and yells like some sort of ventilation system. A tiny hand at your side indicates that Shiro has stepped behind you- the gall of her.

“Okuu! Control your temper! You know what happens when-” Sanae screams desperately.

But you barely notice. Your eyes are drawn to Okuu. She's glowing- specifically, her left leg's glowing. You jump as flesh erupts, flaking off into ash and filling the air with the same acrid hint that was on her steam.

“!!!”

“Okuu!'

“Want! A! Pet!” Okuu shrieks.

A tantrum? Oh hell.

Then, she falls, with a wail of pain, clutching at her shin and howling and screaming, in a tangle of wings and cloth.

Sanae stares, eyes wide and speechless. And as for you, you're hard;y talkative now. The smell of something burnt fills the air.

[] The problem has taken care of herself. Let's go find Yukari!
[] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.
[] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.
[] Finish the youkai off!

Feel free to write in.
----
>> No. 25142
[X] The problem has taken care of herself. Let's go find Yukari!
[X] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.

These underground folk really annoy me. Annoy me square, and square again. I want to knee 'em in the skull, one by one.
>> No. 25143
[X] The problem has taken care of herself. Let's go find Yukari!
[X] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.
>> No. 25145
>>25142
Seconded.

[x] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.
-[x] Unless Sanae shows resistance. If that's the case, then only you and Shiroko GTFO.
>> No. 25154
[] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.
>> No. 25155
[X] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

Curse my heinous character flaw of wanting to help everybody.

Then again, Utsuho was in all likelihood the source of the nuclear blast that destabilized the border when we crossed over. It's probably in our best interest to keep her under control and pacified, so as to expedite the process of rescuing Yukari.
>> No. 25158
[X] The problem has taken care of herself. Let's go find Yukari!
[X] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.
>> No. 25159
[X] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

Gah, goddamn my softness.
>> No. 25160
[X]You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

We can calm her down which at least would make her less of an obstacle in saving Yukari.
>> No. 25161
I should have asked in the other post, but has Sanae met Okuu before? She was about to tell Okuu to stop by citing what happened the last Okuu used her power in a tantrum.
>> No. 25163
[x] The problem has taken care of herself. Let's go find Yukari!
[x] Run! And take Sanae and Shiroko with you.

These aren't mutually exclusive, are they?

Also, Utsuho is a dirty bird.
>> No. 25182
>Come on now – all this magma and explosions, plus the steam and high temperatures in the bowels of the netherworld; the hellfire mantle, the furnace of Avichi itself?
I'm going to assume this is us reasoning that we're at the source of one of our two concerns.
[+] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well(?).

We might be inclined to the "finish her off now" position, but we already know Sanae wasn't going to do it while watching the whole time.
>> No. 25310
[] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

Exposing your back to the nuclear-loli is not a good idea. Temper tantrum or not.
>> No. 25319
[X] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

Contrary to popular opinion, the problem has not been taken care of. Utsuho's on her way to a meltdown.
>> No. 25426
File 126684725493.jpg - (202.49KB , 818x913 , sanae.jpg ) [iqdb]
25426
Getting back into the habit.
---
[] You have to help, at least...Sanae as well.

“Okuu! Don't!” Sanae yells, loudly, clearly and suddenly, voice booming out like some ancient war deity, shaking the very cavern that you're standing in and rattling you to the bone. Nearly deafened, you turn, to face her, eyes wide and body tensed.

Magically enhanced no doubt, you would have guessed later, but for all intents and purposes at that time, it would have seemed exceedingly shocking to note that someone was running towards the raging youkai girl rather than away from her. A brief, dark green flicker of hair at the very edge of your vision. A light silver of embroidered sleeveing. Quick movement and rustling of garments taking to the air.

“Sanae!” You call, voice ragged with weariness and shock, as she shoots past, airborne effortlessly and swooping towards Okuu with every sense of the word. “Let's get out of here!” You call, ultimately fruitlessly of course, but you don't let old friends run off to certain doom just like that. Especially not Sanae.

Perhaps in the confusion, she hadn't heard you, but she does not reply, instead, continuing her course .

Watching for a moment, hoping, just hoping that the girl would come to her sense and back off from a fight, you stand there, slack jawed, tired, frustrated, angry and just quite overly stressed ( quite an understatement, really.) She's going to back to help? Miko, divine powers, miracles – all that had never meant anything to you, and it still was irrelevant. A part of you that screams “Run Away!” is still ever present of curse, as with anyone with a healthy amount of self preservation, but some part of you, almost a detached emotionless presence – the voice in the back of your mind so to speak, urges you to follow your old friend.

Run away. That part of yourself cries out. Desperate.

Go help. The other voice at the back of your head suggests Why does that voice in the back of your head always urge you to do suicidally daring things? Punching a celestial, jumping off a window...and now this. Go help. You don't know and probably will never know, psychology was never your area of expertise, but you have to do something.

You look up, as a piercing shriek fills the air and sends yet more dust and debris falling from the earth ceiling far above. Massive wing beats fill the air once more as amidst the dust and muck kicked up by the power of her wings, a flicker of moment shows through. You will admit that this is... intimidating, especially for one such as yourself, with no magical defense whatsoever.

Either way, you're more or less already caught up right in the middle of it all, and running off now is not much of an option. With Shiro close behind, close enough to feel soft wing beats, you're off, running, dodging and weaving through debris and danmaku for all you're worth. The ground shudders beneath you and stray shots throw up dirt and muck. There's Shiro's squeal and a arm grabbing your shirt as a near miss sends up a cloud of feathers. Utterly one sided though. Sanae's not fired off any for some reason. Everything thrown at the general surroundings has been Okuu's enraged effort so far. An indiscriminate bombardment that is as random as it sporadic. Though, by shooting wildly, she hasn't hit anyone – yet.

Yet. That's the problem. A shot of sooty flames sails through the air, thrown from a hundred meters, far to close to your for comfort, hitting the earth at your feet with a hiss and splutter. With that, the soles of your feet heat to uncomfortable levels and your shoes crack and smolder, leaving you hopping on one foot for a few moments, but still moving forward with no small determination. More shots follow, each of them closer than the last – weather Okuu's targeting you for some reason or if you're that “lucky” remains to be seen. But as Sanae flies past, conspicuously alight like a green and blue new years display the projectiles follow her trajectory instead, most of the sailing off into the darkness, a flying miko, thankfully for Sanae, being harder to hit than a grounded university student.

With only one life and no “bombs” you might add.

And speaking of danamku “bombs”, just what in the world are you supposed to do to help anyway? Hug the fiery youkai? For all the wonders that would work in fiction, it's effectiveness would be highly in doubt right here. You dared not put it to the test at any rate, looking at Okuu, as wild as she is, bringing both hands up to throw yet another two handfuls of fire at Sanae. A look of concentration flickers across her face briefly as the fires illuminate her hair shrouded face – and then, the fires intensify, if there's any word that could be used to describe it. Brighter, stronger, a great radiant heat that made the already stifling place a lot hotter.

It was like looking into the sun.

Sanae stares, for a moment, frozen in mid air, garments ruffled and dirt streaked, hovering with a somewhat anguished expression on her face. Surprise, mingled with a touch of apphrension touches her features as Okuu, heaves a shimmering white hot bar of flame at Sanae. Even ten, twenty meters away, the heat that washes over you is tremendous, like standing right next to an iron furnace, forcing you to lean over, short of breath and coughing.

Shiro literally wilts under the heat, leaning limply against you, in what some would call indecent in better conditions. Even Sanae sags visibly, in mid air, a look of quiet weariness catching your eye. She blinks once, head angling slowly to meet your gaze, then her eyes narrow. Tiredness turns into a look of determination and her hands rise, index finger pointing forward to trace out that familiar star motif she had always been so fond of.

A breeze plays out suddenly, as if right on cue, as the heat is quite literally dissipated, a warm earth breeze, with a tint of something metallic, but still, you cannot complain. Gulping the blessedly cool(er) air down your sweltering lungs, you can barely think as Shiro coughs softly along side you. Still, you've enough sense to duck down for the moment, having time to cool your head somewhat. A wise move as so it happens, the wind is picking up quite unnaturally,an unfamiliar feeling – you realize. You don't even know how long you've been down the hole, the sunshine of Reimu's shrine seemed so long ago.

Shiro raises her head, staring about in wonderment..

“Spring?” she murmurs.

And she's technically right. One thing Shiro's good at, is getting to where this spring is. A real connoisseur.

Its that “above ground” smell. Carried in by the wind. Of melting ice, spring thaw, and all that you've missed in this stagnate hole in the ground. And more. Something potent – something, divine.

A gap? Where's this wind coming from? You wonder, the air streams tossing your matted hair in every other direction. Its getting stronger, you note, as Shiro sniffs the air appreciatively and clings on tightly – she's not going anywhere. Not everyone is as amicable to this little windstorm though.

Okuu's down now – Sanae hasn't shot any danmaku yet, but the youkai girl's descended, hair blown back by the wind, which is a remarkable thing, considering how long her hair is and how oily it is. The smudged face glances about in shock, then blank incomprehension as she looks this way and that, not knowing what to do this this scenario.

Like a child, you realize.

Then her eyes turn to you, smoky golden and piercing in the gloom, even from the distance between you -or so you thought. And for a brief moment of terror, barely able to move as she swoops towards you, faster than Sanae can intercept. You dive out of the way, just in time, with Shiro tugging your sleeves with all her fairy might in her desired direction. Barely made it.

Or so it seems.

The dark winged shape flashes past, like shadow itself, leaving the two of you untouched, crashing to the ground not five meters away. And as you turn to follow her trajectory, Sanae herself shoots past, in a gust of wind, just as Okuu turns, You spot it, easier to notice, when you're not flying - the slight hand movement and intention to attack at point blank range. Your hand reaches out, snatching Sanae's robes (gi -skirt hybrid, to be precise), and pull her down as well, behind your lacking cover. Your arm jerks, nearly wrenched out of its socket, and you swear, cursing your forgetting of a flying miko's velocity.

But you've done it,

Sanae falls, swung around with you as the pivot, with a squeak and tumbles to the ground as the projectile sails harmlessly overhead, rolling on the ground in a tangle of hair, dirt and her sleeves, and coming to a stop, facing the complete opposite direction and rolls over with a soft “oohh...”

Okuu on the other hand scrambles forwards, perhaps a meter or two more, and scrabbles in the dirt for something. You watch warily as she seizes something with both hands and crows in triumph – the metal rod you had seen thrown down earlier. A weapon? You tense, look around futilely, for anything, anything for which you could defend yourself- and Sanae and Shrio. The gap would be ideal, but...

So, you're understandably quite surprised when the youkai girl begins chewing on the metal rod instead, completely ignoring you. The wind whips around your ankles furiously, as you watch – and think. Quickly.

[] Time to run, you think. Grab Sanae, and go!
[] ...Unintelligent bird youkai...Dare you walk up and cover her eyes?
[] Get a rock and knock her out.
[] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.

Feel free to write in. Mix and combine if plausible.
------
>> No. 25428
[x] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.
Our useless and powerless human keeps saving the day. Woah.
>> No. 25431
[x] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.
>> No. 25433
[] ...Unintelligent bird youkai...Dare you walk up and cover her eyes?
>> No. 25434
[x] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.
>> No. 25440
Holy shit, updates!

Quickly, somebody convince me of a decent course of action.
>> No. 25444
[x] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.
>> No. 25445
[x] ...Unintelligent bird youkai...Dare you walk up and cover her eyes?
>> No. 25446
[x] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.

Seems better than trying to take on a dumber, put probably stronger youkai. Of course there is the problem that it might still be dangerous to use gap travel. Or was that only dangerous due to having to go through the Border between the Outside and Gensokyo?
>> No. 25451
>>25446
I think it's more for getting the gap back at the moment, that and in a pinch it's a infinite sharpness sword.
>> No. 25591
[x] Wind... a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[x] Shiroko, light and nimble, could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.
>> No. 25786
File 126763147977.jpg - (212.39KB , 600x486 , 0561d252c391da77832b2d2dcb99d208.jpg ) [iqdb]
25786
Always busy.
----
[] Wind...a small memory of praying at Sanae's shrine back in the human realm. What connection? Wind?
[] Shirko , light and nimble could conceivably break through the tunnel again and retrieve your gap.

Now, as the unpleasant grating sounds of teeth against metal fills your ears, you're busy thinking furiously. Mainly; what in the entirety of Gensokyo is that girl doing? In addition, you're wondering if you could knock her out, with her rather callous underestimation of your threat -or Sanae's for that matter, having a far greater level of magical competence than yourself.

And speaking of Sanae, a soft coughing and movement at your feet alerts you to her. She scrambles up, shaking her head slowly. Her dark green tresses are now matted with mud, and they trail off and stick horribly to her garments, giving you a rather impressive impression of Sadako. Her eyes rise, a furious glint alighting as she meets your gaze; and there's nothing meek and shy about them now. That sour look of thinning (legendary) patience, a rare view of Sanae's rarely seen side, really, but not one you'd like to experience again Gentle, kind, lovely Sanae could be surprisingly scathing at times. Sometimes even scarily so.

You take a step backwards, perhaps sweating very slightly more than the norm in this stifling place.

“Don't do that again.” She warns, shaking an admonishing finger at you, her bright green eyes narrowing on her mud streaked face as she exhales unsteadily. “I know how to graze a shot – so you...you keep out of it! She pauses, breathy and flustered, not in a good way, before continuing, with undiminished vigor. Just short of yelling at you, hands working furiously at brushing and rubbing the dirt off her person.

“But, Sanae!” you attempt to defend your self, rather feebly in retrospect.

“Don't “but Sanae” me!” she flat out yells, fists clenched at her sides, “Stay out of the way! Go take cover, run or whatever! But don't stand in the danamaku field looking like an idiot! Don't distract me! Don't block my shots! Don't interrupt my magic! Don't get yourself hurt! Don't worry me sick!”

“Sanae!” You call once more, feeling like you had been sweating every drop of water out of your body. Close proximity is one thing, but you could say that while Sanae was busy yelling at you, your mutual target has not been idle. Sanae's drawn in close, occupying almost the whole of your visuals with her tangle of dark green hair sticking out at odd directions. It doesn't do much to stop you from noticing what's coming your way though.

Not notice the ceasing of the sounds of teeth grating against metal could be excused.

But even had Sanae been stripped naked, it would be rather hard, you thought, to not notice the beginnings of the danmaku equivalent of a small sun forming off behind her. Suns being, bright and hot and big and all. Even small ones.

“Sanae! Sun!” You yell.

“Sun?” Her expressions flicker to a look of confusion for a split second, then realization dawns. “Oh, that sun.” she continues on, blinking once or twice as her wayward locks are silhouetted with a flaring orange light, staining them bloody red. “Oh, sun” she acknowledges. “Okuu's got it right this time hasn't she?”

“This time?” you asked your friend, voice sinking horribly. “She's tried this before?” Sanae looks away for a moment. An old conversational habit. But when she meets your eyes once more, her face bears a resolute expression once more.

“Not the time!” Sanae interjects. “You have to leave now! And I mean now!” Her words are punctuated with the tracing of yet another star symbol. The wind picks up.

You nod weakly. This is beginning to go right over your head. So much for your gallant efforts of rescue... Okuu's barring the way, and you'd never have made it across the danmaku field on foot. Could you have said anything at that point? Maybe, but nothing had came to mind, exhausted as you were. You could get out of the way...

Sanae nods quickly as you gesture to Shrioko, indicating to the wayward spring fairy to keep up with you. She's energetic enough, if a little sleepy, and you hope fervently that you'll not hurl the both of you into further disaster. And Sanae as well.

The miko turns to face Okuu, seals and ofuda miraculously appearing in hand, and rises, airborne at last. Her opponent grunts and follows suite, and there's a clang of the metal bar ( half chewed) falling to the earth below vast wing beats. You double your pace, Shiro fluttering along behind you with hurried wing beats.

“Feels like summer – not good.” Shiro comments wearily.

It does. You sneak a look over your shoulder, and note the blazing sun in the distance, radiating heat outwards like something out of a movie.. Still, with the wind gusting at your tired feet, and blowing Shiro's robes every other way, you're surprisingly ready to run. You've never been in the track team – that's Ren's idea of fun, but this is good motivation for running you think. And to get some jogging done when you get back home- if you get back home. Which requires either your sister, or your gap.

You continue, breathing heavily but keeping up a respectable pace, choosing a comparatively denser forest of pillars to take cover in, diving into the shade of one particularly massive specimen just as the fireworks begin. As Shiro joins you, tumbling with all the grace of an fairy playing at martial arts, you peek over to the fight. Massive suns bloom and fade as smaller, but not less potent star-seals flicker around their oversized counterparts, shots impacting earth and discharging their energy with sharp cracks– and great shock wave inducing explosions that throw up small mushroom clouds of dust and debris.

You'd like to do something, heaven knows. You're sick of sitting around, impotent as your average fairy. But, you're out of shot, and Aya's camera is not particularly useful at this range, despite its ability to capture danmaku. Yukari's gift to you, dropped, in the fury of Reimu-tai's furious and ultimately poorly planned charge into the underworld. You can't go back for it- not on foot.

A bit of a possibility enters your mind as you peer over towards Sanae's own battle far off into the distance.

Could someone not on foot retrieve it?

The battle's shifting- moving as is participants dodge and weave and maneuver, amidst the thunderclaps and hellfire. The earth itself emits a hellish glow as one of Okuu's distinctive shots causes part of the cavern wall to bleed molten rock- still far off from Yukari's strange effigy- but drawing closer, and closer. You don't know if this could hurt her, but you can't take the chance. You won't take the chance.

You-

An stray shot explodes nearby- one of Okuu' s definitely. The shock-wave is terrifying, throwing the both of you to the ground. After what seems to be an hour, you open your eyes, vision blurred and unsteady, with Shrio worriedly shaking you and offering you tiny hand. Its been merely moments, judging from the battle, and you cast your gaze towards the fighting, unsteadily, standing. Your vision swims, and beyond the danamku, beyond Okuu and Sanae, the image of Yukari moves.

Her image in the distance, seeming so close that you could touch it- reach out to her. Almost one step away- anger takes hold. You could have!

Realization comes to you. You're an idiot.

Anywhere. The key to the boundary, was your will, your direction. You could have stepped to her in an instant , used Ran and Chen to force your way through the turbulence. And if they could not, a host of many friends to add their power to your family's. So why didn't you? The boundary of Gensokyo, present yet intangible, every molecule, every particle kept separate from the human realm. Everywhere and nowhere. Yukari had been merely a step- no merely a breath away all along, and you had been blind to it.

More than ever, you need the gap.

“Shiro!' You murmur.

The spring fairy draws in close, attentive.

“Do you think you can break past, there-” you point to a “corridor” of sorts, where a line of pillars block most of the danmaku shots, ”back to the way we got in?”

“Eh...” Shiro looks at the mass danmaku doubtfully.

“Keep low and fast and stick behind the pillars as much as possible, I need you to pick up the gap- remember that?”

“I-” Shiro begins. You take her hands.

“Please?”

You tired, and Shiro is your best bet. But if all else fails, you'll run along the steaming earth yourself back if you have to.

The spring fairy stiffens, looking down for a moment, then looks back at you, eye to eye.

“You owe me!” she shrills, taking off, tearing her little hands from yours. “I'll-I'll tell you what later!”

“Right,” you agree. Probably lunch or something. Maybe spring.

“Stay here! Don't move! I'll be back!” Shiro announces, hurriedly, face reddening with anticipation.

“I don't worry about that.”

She's a reputation for toughness despite her fairiness. You watch as Shiro speeds away, till she's obscured by the flashes of light in the distance. Then, you fold over, back sliding down the rough wood of the pillar, till you're seated, arms thrown around your knees. Feeling utterly useless – you'll stick to the human realm in the future, where you aren't so much trouble, you promise yourself.

The wind picks up again, now a literal gale, howling balefully in the cavern.

You look for Sanae – a pale, shimmering figure in flight far in the distance, narrowly dodging a sun thrown by her chasing opponent. And you feel useless. Nothing much you could have done to help. Your options included praying and cheering. Not much to work with. Heh, maybe you could nap for a while? You're tired, very tired.

--
“This is Kanako-o-kami.” A younger, Sanae informed, pointing towards the honden. Ancient but well maintained, the aged paneling depicted flowing serpents. Your first visit to her place, along with Mari and Ren. The other two, having left to “buy snacks” at a surprisingly opportune moment.

“Ah- never heard of the lady before.” you commented. Not surprising- there were probably thousands of other kami you've never seen or heard of. Hakurei for one- Reimu''s honden empty and bare. A small bronze frog, seemingly prostrate at the honden's door stood out. A small winter breeze chilled you. “What's that for?” You ask.

“Oh!” Sanae, jumps. “Most people don't notice her, but that's Suwako-o-kami.”

“ A frog?” you question. “And isn't your shrine the Moriya Shrine? Where's Moriya-o-kami?”

“Er...it's a long story.” Sanae sighs. “You could say they're both Moriya- ah you're praying?” She jumps at that. You were probably the first visitor in a long time.

“Er...pray to Kkanako first- then Suwako. That;s the correct order.” She instructs. So many years ago.

...Ah. Pray. Amazing how something so obvious could be so hard to get.

You've seen them! The Moriya Kami, and they're real! Praying would work!

You kneel, not really knowing the proper procedure at all( you've never been particularly devout), but …

A tall imperious woman appears. No, not a women- a goddess. Hair a deep otherworldly purple, running to black, with a circlet of woven hemp crowning her. Divinity shines from her eyes, mighty and terrible. Unlike the mundane form you saw in the Tengu fortress. Briefly, you wonder if her counterpart has some form like this as well.

'Well? If it isn't that nice young fellow.' She booms. “Haven't had a prayer from you in over eight years, but not too bad a prayer at all”

You're struck dumb for a moment. Overdose of divinity, you would have said later.

“Well?” She prompts.

[] Let's help Sanae!
[] Let's help Shiroko!”
[] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.
[] A write in.

Feel free to write in sensibly.
>> No. 25795
[x] Let's help Sanae!

I trust the fairy to make it out ok.
>> No. 25798
[x] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.
I trust her judgment more than ours. We are the ones on our knees.
>> No. 25802
[x] Let's help Shiroko!

Yukari first.
>> No. 25803
[x] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.
>> No. 25806
[X] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.

If anyone can knock down Utsuho a peg, it's her direct benefactor. If anyone can ensure Lily's safety, it's a goddess. Kanako might not be super fond of us, but if we show our earnest intentions, and let her know the lengths we've gone to for our family, then even she ought to be impressed.

>“You owe me!” she shrills, taking off, tearing her little hands from yours. “I'll-I'll tell you what later!”

>“Right,” you agree. Probably lunch or something. Maybe spring.

Spring. When a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.
>> No. 25808
[x] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.

It's the best choice to help everyone.

But it's a bit sad how our lead seems insistent on sticking to the human realm.
>> No. 25830
>>25808
Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal. — Albert Camus

I'm interpreting this in a different way.
in worst case scenarios, asking that Kanako helps either of the other two, that demonstrates that Landlordanon does not trust their abilities. Sanae, perhaps, but she did just tell us to leave it to her alone. Shiroko getting help makes sense but if she was willing to charge off just on our words, hen we should show confidence in her. Also, literal to the wording, we are asking for assistance to other people.
That is where I think "divine intervention" is different altogether. At it's worst interpretation, it could be an entirely selfish expression that only benefits us and in a way that we can not turn around and actively help the others. Additionally, we're already waiting on Lily to return from the nasty mission we sent her on by herself.
Roll with the punches.
[+] Let's help Shiroko (we'll still owe her)!
>> No. 25835
>>25830
Well I think he has a nice life in the real world, though it's just a bit said how he seems to resign himself to only one world instead of trying to do both. He might have benefited if he embraced the Gensokyo side at least partially.

This reminds me of a question: When will we find out how Parsee is able to be in both the real world (Our step sister the singer/bikini model) and Gensokyo?

Sanae asked Landlordanon to butt out due to the sheer fact he's less useful than a certain Ice Fairy in such a battle. Okuu is a bit much for a newbie Incident resolver to handle. Do remember that Okuu is technically Kanako's mess, so who better to damage control than the person that made said mess?
>> No. 25839
[x] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.
>> No. 25840
[X] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.

>>25835
>When will we find out how Parsee is able to be in both the real world (Our step sister the singer/bikini model) and Gensokyo?
I think they're actually two separate people. It's just coincidence that they have the same (stage) name.
>> No. 25841
>>25840
Doesn't explain how she was wearing Parsee's outfit during her last concert.

But Bikini Parsee is a nice mental image.
>> No. 25842
[x] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.
>> No. 25844
>>25835
Wait, she's a bikini model, too?

Goddamn, how did I miss this?
>> No. 25848
>>25844
Was at least

>>20453

Read this post. gravure idols are known to wear swimsuits during their shoots. But I like the bit where Landlord anon mocks the love of Tsunderes.
>> No. 26734
THere's quite a bit of upheaval in my life at the moment and I must take care of it.

It's been fun thus far.

Thank you.
>> No. 27156
Will this never be updated again?
>> No. 27157
I think if he'd said something like "I won't be able to work on this story again" then there'd be no more updating. As it is, he's just saying he's having family problems, and needs to sort that out. His phrase of "It's been fun so far" doesn't seem like a statement of finality.
>> No. 27158
Crap, I meant his "It's been fun thus far" phrase. Besides isn't this story considered active on the archive page?
>> No. 27163
>>27156
I think this is just another hiatus; not the first nor the last one he did. I feel he won't give up on the story.
>> No. 27452
"Thank you for reading what i wrote. It was a good time."
Says it loud and clear that he has to quit.
>> No. 27455
>>27452
Specifically where does ???? say that? His own quote says "THere's quite a bit of upheaval in my life at the moment and I must take care of it.

It's been fun thus far.

Thank you."
>> No. 34325
[] Explain everything- if there's anything you need now, its divine intervention.

Sage for non-update.

Oh gorramit brahs, this story is as dead as a doornail isnt it?