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25301 No. 25301
[Head over to Nathaniel’s voice, and thus, the exit. Check out the body of whatever he killed, but make it quick; there could always be more of them.]
[Since you’re yelling at Nate, might as well yell something useful: "Glish is Adam again, left to compose a musical piece for Flandre; no time to wait: it is dark, and we are likely to be eaten by a Rumia!"]

It’s worth it. As crazy as it sounds, in a time like this you trust Nathaniel more than “Adam”, amazingly enough. A part of you always doubted that Adam was going to come back anyways, and an exit sounds like a good plan right about now. Making sure the bra between you and Cirno is still tied tight, the two of you quickly hustle down the caverns, following the sound of Nathaniel’s distant voice, growing closer with each sentence.

“EXIT AS IN A YAY-WE’RE-FREE EXIT?” Cirno shouts into the darkness.

”Exit as in a ‘Finally I can see the stars’ exit!” he replies.

“YAY! WE’RE FREE!”

Smiling on the inside, you ask another question to keep the line of sound between you two open. “NATE! GLISH ISN’T LISTENING TO ANYONE ANYMORE; HE’S BACK TO BEING ‘ADAM’ AGAIN! SAID HE WAS GOING TO COMPOSE A MUSICAL PIECE FOR FLANDRE OR SOMETHING!”

”Who’s Adam again?!

“HIS ALTER EGO OR SOMETHING; THE ONE WHERE HE DOESN’T HAVE HIS LISP AND HE’S AS CRAZY AS HIS SISTER! COULDN’T WAIT FOR ‘IM, IT’S DARK, AND WE’RE LIKELY TO BE EATEN BY A RUMIA AT ANY TIME!”

”Stop using names I don’t recognize! What’s a Rumia?”

For the love of…the two of you get separated for a few minutes and he misses out on everything! “IT’S A YOUKAI, A DARKNESS YOUKAI! SHE TRIED TO EAT ME, SHE’S PLANNING ON EATING YOU TOO!”

He remains silent for a while, possibly thinking about something, then shouts again. ”Well…I may have killed one, then; that thing kept trying to take bites out of me!”

Before too many minutes have passed, the light of your combined danmaku reveals a seated and rather grimy Nathaniel; Equitas in his right hand, Seraphim in his left. The blade shines with dark red blood, making the white blade seem even whiter in the pale light. The man’s shirt and pants are torn in several places, each place joined by a bloody red patch of ripped flesh where it looks like something was gnawing on his skin. Upon seeing and hearing the two of you approach, he stands up, using the blade to steady his ascent.

“Welcome back,” you greet sarcastically. “Somewhat the worse for wear, I see.”

He shrugs. “Ehh, I’ve had worse. How about you? Any problems?”

“Aside from the incident with Rumia, nope; just wandering around looking for you. Now, about this exit…?”

He waves his gun hand down the tunnel, motioning for you to follow him. He’s definitely limping, but it doesn’t seem that detrimental to him. As you follow him, the ground begins to shine with more and more blood, and even pieces of skin and flesh. Just what kind of battle was this, anyways? Are those pieces of him, or the thing that attacked him? And speaking of which…

There it is. Or at least, there’s something is; the thing is so disfigured now it’s hard to tell if it’s anything you would even recognize. The body is hacked into little bits—a hand here, part of a leg with a knee next to it—and there’s scraps of what might have been clothes, though everything is dyed red so it’s hard to tell. Appendages and a mutilated torso all lay drowning in a sea of blood that Nathaniel’s boots slosh through unconcernedly as he steps around the remains of his foe. You stop for just a few seconds more and lean down to get a better look at the body…well, the remains.

It looks like it was humanoid once—only two arms and two legs that you can see—and probably more human than monster at that. The size would just be right for one of those vampire fairies, except you can’t find any wings amongst the flotsam and jetsam, or at least nothing that looks like wings. Turning the dismembered torso around, the barely distinguishable presence of carved-up breasts prove that it is—was---female. No surprises there; practically everything you’ve met in Gensokyo has been female except for Glish and Nathaniel, and considering they’re not even from Gensokyo…Anyways, you try and make out what the clothes once looked like, but it’s impossible. Nathaniel’s sword slashes mixed with the complete saturation of blood reduce everything to sodden rags.

The head lays just a half-pace away, if “head” it can be called. It’s nothing more that a caved-in shell, now, the remains of the brain and hair slithering out of it like red lumpy jelly. The face is indistinguishable, riddled with several half-healed bullet wounds and deep gouges from Nate’s sword. Perhaps if you were a coroner you might be able to distinguish something, but even then you doubt that anyone could make out anything from this massacred corpse. Really now, did Nathaniel need to go this far to kill whatever it was? Granted, he was fighting in complete darkness and with reckless abandon, but even that just doesn’t seem to cover the magnitude of destruction you see here.

“You going to spend all night looking at that corpse?” Nathaniel asks, seeing you stalled on the ground. Cirno has her hands covering her eyes behind you, perhaps unwilling to see a living thing reduced to something like this. “I appreciate your sentiment,” he continues, “but let the dead be dead. Both of us were fighting for our lives, and with the amount of lead and steel that thing ate, I wasn’t about to let it regenerate somehow. Come on, the exit’s right up here.”

You try to find a clean part of your pants to wipe the blood off of you hands, which is more difficult than you wouldn’t have believed. So much blood…yours, Cirno’s, those monsters’, all of it a living memory inside your clothes. You lean over next to Cirno.

“It’s okay, Cirno; it’s dead. It won’t be hurting anyone. It’s just a little dirty, that’s all. Come on; let’s get out of here. Let’s see the sky again.”

She keeps her eyes closed and shakes her head meekly. “It’s…it’s scary, Mr. Stupid. Johnthaniel, he…why’d he have to kill it so dead? What if…what if that’s Ruumi? What if…what if I’ll never see ‘er again?!”

You try and speak comforting words to her, encouraging words to her, as you take her hand and slowly lead her around the sea of death. It’ll be all right…I’m sure Rumia’s just fine…This is probably just another of those scary fairies…Don’t worry…Let’s just get someplace safe…

(In before…)

>> No. 25302
(…zombie vampire fairies.)

Your foot kicks a small object as you guide the self-blinded Cirno. You look down absentmindedly; just a red chunk of bloody skull and hair, nothing to worry about. Awful thick for a skull, though; round, too. On a whim you pick it up, and suddenly grip it tight as you realize what it is: Rumia’s hair ribbon, the central red stone still attached to a clump of hair and a piece of flesh and bone. Cirno’s eyes are still closed; she doesn’t know yet. Doesn’t know that her friend is dead, that Nathaniel killed her…You quickly pocket the bloody item out of sight and move over to where Nathaniel’s waiting.

Sure enough, a fork in the tunnel here quickly slopes upwards into a rough staircase, and soon you can see a dark blue sky with a few speckled stars, faint wisps of wind cooling your face. You just get high enough to see the Scarlet Devil Mansion off to the side of the tunnel’s mouth before Nathaniel stops.

“This is as far as I’ll take you for now,” he says, gritting his teeth.

“Huh? Why?” you ask, quickly feeling a tingle of anticipation down your spine.

“I…have to go back down there. When I got grabbed, Revelation…I dropped it. I have to find it. I’m not leaving without it.”

WHAT?!” you practically yell at him. After all this, all this and he, he drops his watch?! He loses his watch?! “The heck is your problem, Nathaniel?”

“Bad luck,” he replies sadly, wiping the blood off of Equitas and sheathing it by his side. “I always have the worst luck when it comes to the important things in life. Call it fate if you want to; I might just be inclined to myself. But whatever you do, I’m going back down there. If you want to help, I’ll be glad for the company.”

This is too much. You reunite with this fool again, only to lose him minutes later because he has butterfingers?! Serves him right! You’re torn, nevertheless. Without him, your intrepid band of warriors is down to only two, and you don’t count for much. Plus, with a time-stopping watch on your side, things could be much, much easier. But the exit…it’s right there! And if he’s lying about dropping the watch, just so he can get behind you again...

That man should have come with an instruction manual.

[ ] Go back down and help him look. Six Five eyes are better than two.
[ ] Go back down, but don’t help him look. He lost it himself, he should find it himself.
[ ] Wait right here for him to return. Just remain a neutral party for now.
[ ] Wait right here for him to return, but give him your lighter.
[ ] Go on without him.
[ ] Choices involving Nathaniel are oft worthy of write-ins. (Write-in).

Also…
[ ] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.
[ ] Do not tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.

========================================

The feeling of depression has passed. See, nothing to worry about!

I have changed my name for the day in honor of the 9th. Remember, remember…
>> No. 25303
[x] Go back down and help him look. Six Five eyes are better than two.

Also…
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.

[x] Ask Cirno if she wants to come back in or not, don't assume she will after finding out Rumia's dead.

Thanks a lot all of you who voted to wait it out >< because of you Rumi's dead now!!!!
Inactivity kills, so I'm going back in.
>> No. 25304
[x] Go on without him.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.

Nathaniel's obsession with his sword is the reason we had to go through that fucking game. He shot Cirno and he killed her friend, it is in no way appropriate for us to go help him right now.

Also, Cirno and the Farmer are wounded and exhausted as fuck. Nathaniel might be better off on his own.
>> No. 25305
>Thanks a lot all of you who voted to wait it out >< because of you Rumi's dead now!!!!
>Inactivity kills, so I'm going back in.

We were too tired to even make danmaku. Cirno was bleeding heavily and had a bullet in her shoulder. Nathaniel was firing his supergun blindly in the dark. Do you really think we could have done anything to stop Rumia without killing her ourselves?
>> No. 25306
>>25304 is right.

[x] Go on without him.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.
>> No. 25307
Metagame knowledge dictates that Rumia'll be fine in no time.

Also Nathan you crazy motherfucker.

[x] Go back down and help him look. Six Five eyes are better than two.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.
[x] Ask Cirno if she wants to come back in or not, don't assume she will after finding out Rumia's dead.

I'm doing this because I have a gut feeling that he'll need the help.
>> No. 25308
[x] Go on without him.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.
We need to rest.
>> No. 25309
[X] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[X] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[X] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s "death".
[X] Ask her, if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.

We have to keep on watch for any dangers (Nathaniel perhaps included) down there, as well as ask Cirno for some input about Rumia's current state (just how "dead" she really is).
The ribbon may be a convenient distraction, but it could also be my paranoia acting up.
>> No. 25310
[X] Go back down and help him look. Four Three eyes are better than two.
[X] Tell Cirno to wait at the exit and make danmaku.

Let's get this over with.
Nate can't make any danmaku, so he'll never find the watch without us. Making Cirno search among the pieces of her friend is beyond cruel, though, so she can stay at the exit and make blue light to help lead us back out after we find the watch.
>> No. 25311
File 123153236711.png - (118.00KB , 600x600 , 1108265.png ) [iqdb]
25311
>>25302
>Call it fate if you want to; I might just be inclined to myself.
I was wondering why Nat didn't time stop when he got separated from us. If his speculation is correct, I am too. I mean, goddamn: not giving straight answers, shooting Cirno, killing her friend, fearing we'll get shot in the back... Remilia has got to be doing everything within her power to drive a wedge between farmer and Nat.

>>25309
Yeah, that's what I'm thinking too. My notion is that Rumia is a manifestation of a (childhood) fear of the dark, the things that lurk in shadows, the man eating creatures that go bump in the night (hence the creepy voices in our head?). As long as that's the case and she is in her element (in pitch black darkness), there's a chance she could come back like the "monster" she is. However, if there's even a remote chance of her coming back, she'll need all of her bits in the general area. Go back, check Rumia's body for any sign of regeneration, and place bloody bit of scalp with the rest of her body. I know messing with dead bodies is a no-no, but Rumia has no evidence of vampirism or fate hax to affect her regenerative abilities so... she's dead, but I'm not going to say she's "dead" dead yet.

[X] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[X] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[X] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.
[X] Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.
>> No. 25313
>>25311
If Rumia does regenerate, guess where her amulet currently is.

[x] Wait right here for him to return, but give him your lighter.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.

Cirno doesn't want to go back down there.
>> No. 25314
I know this thought has occurred to me, and am curious as to why it has not to anyone else: perhaps we are to help in regenerating Rumia by removing the ribbon? If she shows no signs of recovery, it might allow her to regenerate if we do (from a very far and safe location). Alternatively, we can take this to patchouli (maybe?) and have her identify any magic within the thing, or even try to use (potentially) EX Rumia as a third-party weapon against Remilia (if indeed she is being evil here). Speculation aside, here's my vote.

[X] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[X] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[X] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.
[X] Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.
>> No. 25316
[X] Wait right here for him to return, but give him your lighter.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia’s death.

You know, considering Anon's general sentiment towards those who have threatened and/or attempted to kill us in the past, it seems strange to see some feel bad that the most recent one is apparently dead.
>> No. 25317
[x] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[x] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[x] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[x] Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.
[x] Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.
>> No. 25318
>Rumia’s hair ribbon, the central red stone still attached to a clump of hair and a piece of flesh and bone.

FFFFFFFFFFFFFF my hate for Nathaniel just went up 200%

[X] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[X] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[X] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.
[X] Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.
>> No. 25319
>>25318
oh yes and include what >>25311 said. Picking up pieces, looking at her remains etc.
>> No. 25320
Right before the credits start rolling...

And so Mr.Farmer's story comes to an end.

Had she forgiven us in the end? Did that one event cause he entire outlook to shatter and her hope to break?

He could never know, all he knew was that she was now gone from his life forever, she had let him kill her to free her from her guilty conscience...the conscience that he himself had helped her attain.

"Goodbye Mr.Stupid...I hope we'll get to see each other...again...I'll...say......hi....to....Rumia..."

Cirno Route : Bad End 9

Help me Eirin Corner!!!
Eirin : "Ah, maybe you should reload and do something for her friend? Cirno wanted to protect all her friends, it's a shame you wouldn't help her achieve that wish.

Also, you really shouldn't have doodled the word "shut-in" everywhere in Patchouli's library or squeezed Sakuya's breast to confirm wether she wore pad or not. I'm not even sure how you made it to the end after having done that really..."
>> No. 25329
>>25320
>It seems that youkai, like fairies, may not be able to die permanently; Hieda no Akyu, Reimu Hakurei and others regularly discuss 'extermination' of youkai as if it were only a temporary measure. While this may be merely a quirk of language, it seems like Gensokyo's humans would rather do away with many youkai completely, were they able.

I doubt she's really dead.
>> No. 25331
>>25329

Oh? Guess he didn't notice that what he killed was a youkai...

Oh wow, with the number of votes for going back this should be interesting. This is usually the part where I'd go save and heal up before preparing to go into another boss battle >.>

Too bad Mr.Stupid doesn't have that kind of luxury.
>> No. 25334
No updates until either late tonight or tomorrow morning, I'm afraid; the inevitable day-long journey to my place of collegiate learning has arrived. I would write in the car, but past experiences have told me that this is a futile endeavor, or at least a very annoying one. I shall busy myself with reading more CYOAs instead; I've still got quite a backlog to take care of. Vote if you haven't voted yet; you'll have plenty of time to today.

>>25307
>Metagame knowledge dictates that Rumia'll be fine in no time.
Is that so…?

>>25311
Reading conspiracy theories always makes me smile when I alone know the truth. But this is some interesting analysis here; well done.

>>25316
>You know, considering Anon's general sentiment towards those who have threatened and/or attempted to kill us in the past, it seems strange to see some feel bad that the most recent one is apparently dead.
Yes…unless Nathaniel’s the one removing the threats. Good help is so hard to find these days, isn’t it?

>>25318
>FFFFFFFFFFFFFF my hate for Nathaniel just went up 200%
I didn’t think that would be possible; you hate him plenty now. And yet you’re going to blame a guy for killing in self-defense to save his own life?

>>25329
“’Tis just a flesh wound!”

>>25320
Touching. Isn’t it sad?

>>25331
>This is usually the part where I'd go save and heal up before preparing to go into another boss battle >.> Too bad Mr. Stupid doesn't have that kind of luxury.
Indeed. You’re in the boss gauntlet now; no saving until it’s all over. Good luck beating umpteen bosses in a row without healing…

…how I hated that part of Megaman 1.
>> No. 25337
[X] Go back down, but don’t help him look.
[X] Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)
[X] Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.
[X] Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.
[X] Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.

I just finished reading the entire story in the past two days after being impressed with Cirno the Valiant. Many kudos for both of these amazing pieces of work! It definitely gives a more sinister feel to the Scarlet Devil Mansion.

That said, I'm probably one to trust Johnthaniel a little more than most, but even I'm gritting my teeth a little at this point. Let's go down, regardless of our condition; Nathaniel's too good of an ally to leave alone. Leaving him down there is just screaming for trouble. We may as well be down there to help him when that trouble happens by. There's just too much risk in being separated now.
>> No. 25338
>>FFFFFFFFFFFFFF my hate for Nathaniel just went up 200%
>I didn’t think that would be possible; you hate him plenty now. And yet you’re going to blame a guy for killing in self-defense to save his own life?
You know what's funny? I actually kinda like that guy.
>> No. 25339
>Before too many minutes have passed, the light of your combined danmaku reveals a seated and rather grimy Nathaniel; Equitas in his right hand, Seraphim in his left. The blade shines with dark red blood, making the white blade seem even whiter in the pale light. The man’s shirt and pants are torn in several places, each place joined by a bloody red patch of ripped flesh where it looks like something was gnawing on his skin. Upon seeing and hearing the two of you approach, he stands up, using the blade to steady his ascent.

He's looking more and more like the hero he's always wanted to be. I can see him bravely sacrificing himself from some kind of cause in the near future.

>Awful thick for a skull, though; round, too. On a whim you pick it up, and suddenly grip it tight as you realize what it is: Rumia’s hair ribbon, the central red stone still attached to a clump of hair and a piece of flesh and bone.

Just desserts as far as I'm concerned. The only negative outcome here is that Cirno will be unhappy. Still, part of her growth will be learning to choose her friends, and not letting her friends choose her: Cirno could have easily ended up the same way as Rumia if she hadn't changed her ways.

That said, Rumia will of course regenerate or reincarnate: Human's wouldn't have bothered sealing her if they could get rid of her that easily.

[x] Do your best to clean the gore off of the ribbon and then give it to Cirno. Tell her about Rumia’s death.
[x] Ask Cirno what she wants you to do: You could wait, help Nathaniel find his watch, or leave him behind, but whatever it is, you're not willing to separate herself from her, even for a moment.

He needs our help to look, since he doesn't have danmaku to see with. He also doesn't have the glasses so it's quite possible Sakuya might waylay him or simply steal the watch before he can find it. However, Cirno's emotional state is what I'm most concerned about.
>> No. 25340
>>25338
>You know what's funny? I actually kinda like that guy.

He's the best developed original character I've seen in a CYOA by far.
>> No. 25341
I’m feeling far too tired from my trip to try and write tonight, and much needs to be done before classes begin anew on Monday. I love to write as much as you love to read, and my steadfast dedication to update regularly is as much of a suggestion as it is an obligation to me, but life must come first. I must go grocery shopping in the morning, so keep your eyes open for an update in the early afternoon.

>>25337
>I just finished reading the entire story in the past two days after being impressed with Cirno the Valiant.
Two days? Two days?! For the love of all that is holy, do you know how bloody long this story is? And you read it is two days?! My hat is tipped in your direction, friend.

>Many kudos for both of these amazing pieces of work! It definitely gives a more sinister feel to the Scarlet Devil Mansion.
Thank you kindly. I’m enjoying it just as much as you; no lies. And there’s been far too many happy-nicetime love stories dealing with Gensokyo and its residents; I wanted a little something more.

>That said, I'm probably one to trust Johnthaniel a little more than most
&
>>25338
>You know what's funny? I actually kinda like that guy.
Well, it’s good to see that Nathaniel’s not alone. I actually kinda like that guy too!

>>25340
>He's the best developed original character I've seen in a CYOA by far.
High praise; I am in awe of such a compliment. Thank you very much.
>> No. 25344
Hey U.N. ⑨wen(I didn't notice there was a ⑨ here before) how long does it take you to write a reply in general anyways?
>> No. 25353
>>25341
Two days? Pff, I read it in one.

Oh god, I wish I had a social life. ;_;
>> No. 25355
>>25341

not the guy you're talking about here, but i did read the entirety of berserk in 2 days
>> No. 25362
>>25353

I read all of ELA in a day.
>> No. 25364
>>25362

Why?
>> No. 25365
[Go back down, but don’t help him look. Instead watch out for anything potentially hostile down there. ("Adam", Flandre, resurrected Rumia)]
[Also watch out for Nathaniel, if only in case his butterfingers decide to drop anything else.]
[Tell Cirno about Rumia: you think she might be dead, but you don't know.]
[Ask her if she thinks that Rumia might be able to regenerate from that.]

“All right, fine; I’ll be coming with you, I guess. You look by yourself, though. Someone’s got to keep an eye on your back in case there’s more of ‘them’ around. Need a light?” you add, grabbing your lighter from your pocket.

He shrugs his shoulders. “Ehh, the torch is down there by that thing I killed, but if you wouldn’t mind…”

Oh, you mind, but at the moment you just don’t have a lot of other options. You almost lost Cirno once…you lost Nathaniel only to finally get him back, and now you’re out Glish too. You’ve been losing too much; you want to find, find and keep. You hand him the lighter for the time being.

“Just remember to give it back,” you add, maintaining your grip on the item for just a second longer than is necessary before letting him take control of it. Not like you’ve got much use for it, really, but it’s the principal of the matter that counts. He holds it in his free hand and flicks it open and closed a few times, getting a feel for the device.

“Thanks; I will.”

He starts to move back down into the lower tunnels with the lighter in front of him, but waits for you when he sees that Cirno is still hesitating. You look at her and think about what to say. Should you tell her? Tell her that Rumia’s dead? The impact it could have on her…you still don’t how she’d react to the news. Rumia’s her friend, and yet “her friend” was still going to kill you for no other reason than that she was hungry. It’s the ties of long-time friendship versus the ties of caring and consideration; would you win? And even if you did, what will she do to Nathaniel when she discovers he’s the one responsible?

“Are you coming down, Cirno? You don’t have to if you don’t want to, you know.” You can’t bring yourself to tell her just yet. You want to—you’re going to!—but this is…It’s hard. The gravity of life and death, even amongst creatures to which “life” and “death” seems to be more of a suggestion, still applies. Or, well…does it? What if Rumia is as strong as a fairy, even stronger? What if she can heal from any wound just like Cirno should be able to? The girl’s nothing but a pile of mush right now, but just maybe…

“No, no, s’okay. I gots ta’ protect you down there, just like you gots to protect Johnthaniel.” She starts walking downwards, forcing you to do the same, and filling the tunnel with white-blue danmaku light once again.

“But then who protects you?” you ask, trying to make the question sound light hearted.

“Eh? We figured that out, remember? You do! If you don’t stop being a Stupid then we’re never gonna get out of here, you know?”

You smile at that one, if only to convince yourself that you still can. It doesn’t take long for the three of you to reach Rumia’s corpse, and Nathaniel grabs up the discarded torch, flicking it a few times to get some of the blood off before attempting to light it with your lighter. The blood has seeped into the oiled rags at the tip, making his endeavors initially futile.

You’re standing right here, over what was once Rumia. Should you tell her now? While Cirno can still see her? While she can still say “goodbye”? Your hand fiddles with the bloody ribbon in your pocket, uncertain. You recall once, a long time ago, being in the possession of a hair ribbon of another girl close to you. The mental connection only makes you shake the idea out of your head. Not yet. Soon, but…just not yet.

Nathaniel finally gets the torch lit and holds it close to the ground, scrutinizing the floor as quickly as possible, looking for his precious watch. He wastes no time whatsoever and starts moving forwards, holding the torch like a detective would hold a magnifying glass, back arched close to the ground and knees slightly bent. You cast him a glance every now and again, making sure he doesn’t try and “drop” anything else, but you’re primarily focused on the darkness in front of him and behind Cirno. These tunnels just…don’t feel safe. First fairies, then “Adam”, then Rumia, and now…? With Cirno’s aid you can easily see down the tunnels for dozens of meters, but it’s too unsettling. What if Adam comes barreling back down here, bashing your head in with a grand piano, or something equally insane? What if Flandre comes and tries to start up a new game? Or what if Rumia…

“Hey, Cirno? There’s something you should know.” You can’t stand it; you have to tell her now, or you never will.

“It’s…it’s about Ruumi, isn’t it?” she responds, sniffing her nose.

“Yeah. She’s, well…” You remove the ribbon from your pocket and hand it to her. She cups it in both hands, like a little bird that’s about to fly away, just looking at it. “I think she’s gone, Cirno. That’s her on the floor back there; I tried to tell you sooner, but, well, I just…do you think she’ll be able to come back like a fairy, good as new?”

She doesn’t say anything for a while, merely inches along with you as you both keep up with Nathaniel, who seems almost oblivious to what you’re talking about. She looks…not sad, not exactly. Remorseful? Confused? Troubled? Whatever it is, she at least doesn’t start bawling on the ground like you might have feared. Finally, she manages a few soft words.

“I…already knew.”

“I kn—wait, you did?”

“Mhm. Back when you were helping me across all the…the…I peeked through my eyes and saw you pick up that little pin thing Ruumi always wears. I didn’t, didn’t wanna say anything, ‘cause…” She blinks away the tears welling up in her eyes and shakes her head slowly. “I, liked her; she was fun to be around. But I never…we all knew that one, that she would end up...” You can tell she’s doing her best not to break down, and unlike the scene in the bathroom, she’s actually holding it in this time.

“She was…she was gonna eat you. And then, then she was gonna eat Mr. Johnthaniel. I wanted to…but…” She shakes her head again and occupies herself with picking away the hair and flesh from the ribbon’s clasp, until it’s just a cute little accessory, bathed in blood. “Why, why don’t I feel that sad, Mr. Stupid?” she asks you in confusion, looking up at you with those watery blue eyes. “Ruumi was, she was my friend, my friend for like ever! And now she’s gone. And I’m even crying. But why don’t I feel sad? I think I’m s’posed to feel sad, but…but I don’t. How come?”

She leans against your waist and grabs a hold of your free hand as you walk behind Nate, the other still looking at Rumia’s trinket. Walking hand in hand like this, it’s almost like you’re the big brother she never had. You keeping looking over your shoulder, just waiting for that moment when your touching conversation is going to be ripped to shreds. Yes, those echoing footsteps behind you…there’s got to be too many, right?

(You really need to…)
>> No. 25367
(…take it ea—LOOK OUT IT’S RIGHT BEHIND YOU!)

You keep talking anyways. “Maybe…I dunno, Cirno, maybe you’re growing up a little? Nobody likes it when their friends die—and it’s good to cry a little too—but not everybody can live forever, right? We all have to go away some time. Maybe, maybe you’re just starting to realize that this is the time Rumia goes away.”

“Maybe…” she replies uncertainly. She says no more, and you feel it best to not say anything either. She’s taking this better than you expected, and anything you’d add to this would probably just ruin it. One step at a time…that’s what it will take for Cirno to finally enter the real world. One small step at a time…

There you are.”

You can feel Cirno’s body jump a little as yours does the exact same, and you each look a different direction in surprise. Nathaniel stands up and turns around, brushing the tunnel’s grime off of his newly-found Revelation. He observes it for a few seconds before tucking it safely into his small chest pocket.

“That does it; let’s get the heck out of here,” he comments, brushing a blood-encrusted lock of hair out of his face. “Lead on, good sir and good madam, lead on.”

“Oh no; not again,” you contradict, stepping behind him defiantly. The maneuver is not nearly as smooth as you would have hoped; you neglected to remember the link between you and Cirno still existed, and your swift stride is interrupted by Cirno colliding with Nathaniel’s legs. This doesn’t stop you from explaining yourself, however. “Last time we did that you wound up lashing out that angel of yours at anything that make a noise, and I don’t know if you realized this, but one of those bullets hit Cirno by accident. No no, you’re in the middle this time. Cirno, take the lead; I’ve got his back.”

Cirno holds up her wrist, the bra still tied to it. “What am I s’posed to do with this, then?”

“Here, give it to me; I’m tying it to him for now.” She fusses with the knot for a few moments before giving it to you, and you quickly tie it just a little too tight around Nathaniel’s right hand. “Just in case,” you add, looking at him as you say it.

He shakes his head in bemusement. “That’s the way it has to be, I expect?”

You glare at him. “The day I trust you completely, Nathaniel The Wanderer, is the day I find someone who is incapable of lying.”

He shrugs his shoulders, and the three of you traverse the short distance back to the exit. You’re on edge. Not because you feel something creeping up behind you, but because you don’t. This feeling, this feeling of “nothing”, it’s uncanny. All throughout these tunnels nothing has gone according to plans, ever. Cirno’s death, Adam’s insanity, Nathaniel’s explanations, his disappearance, his so-called “extermination” of Rumia…Something has to go wrong; something must go wrong!

Cirno stops your short progression and kneels down onto the ground. You peek around Nathaniel’s shoulders: she’s stooping down beside Rumia’s remains. Tenderly you see her place the ribbon next to one of her dismembered hands as she whispers a few final words.

“Here you go, Ruumi. You said you always wanted to take off your pretty ribbon, even for just a day…now you can. I guess I’ll see ya’ around. Well…maybe not, I guess. Bye.”

She floats over the lake of blood as Nathaniel gingerly steps around it. You give a shaky glance at the remains before stepping over them. Are those lacerations smaller than before? Does that splintered bone look a longer to you? No, no; it’s just the light, just you imagining things. She’s dead, deader than dead. Not even a magical creature could heal up from all this, and definitely not one that’s only as strong as Cirno.

You breathe the fresh air of the outside world once more as the three of you emerge from the tunnel’s entrance, poorly hidden amidst a cluster of flower bushes. Other beautiful flowers and plants surround you as you look over towards the looming figure of the Scarlet Devil Mansion. This garden still lies within the manor walls, unfortunately, but it’s quite a good distance away from the main gate, far enough that you can’t really even see it from this angle. The night sky…you could die a happy man now, to finally see even a few last twinkling stars rather than the oppressive black ceilings behind and below you. The midnight blue of the heavens above is faded and dim, signaling that morning is not too far off.

A large statue of a man with long hair and a beard is displayed proudly in the middle of the garden, his garb the robes of a great lord. Sitting silhouetted on his shoulder, legs dangling freely, is Flandre Scarlet, looking towards the eastern horizon. Her cruel iron wand rests at the statue’s feet, unattended, and even from this distance you can tell that she’s off in her own little world, paying attention to nothing but the sky beyond.

[ ] Wander around the garden for a while.
[ ] Walk over to the statue, but say nothing.
[ ] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre. (write in what)
[ ] Walk over to the statue and pick up the wand. Give it back to Flandre.
[ ] Walk over to the statue and pick up the wand. Don’t give it to Flandre.
[ ] Walk over to the mansion doors, and do…nothing? Something? (write in what)
[ ] Walk over to the mansion gates, and do…nothing? Something? (write in what)
[ ] Turn around; try to scale the nearest wall.
[ ] Suddenly, a write-in!

========================================

>>25344
I only did the "⑨" bit on Friday, in honor of the 9th day of the 9th year. I'm still the same Owen you all know and love love to hate acknowledge.

But to answer your question, I'd say an average update takes about three hours for me to write, maybe four tops for the really long ones (barring those of insane length). Most of this is taken up by brainstorming and thinking about how best to word a particular section for greater effect; the typing just comes naturally once I really get my head into the situation. I used to average more around two hours back in early November, but these days I seem to have subconsciously lengthened my updates, and thus the time it takes to write them.
>> No. 25369
[x] "Nathaniel, you're leaving. Glish is Adam now, but even when he was himself, he didn't want to leave. You have your three artifacts. You did what you came here to accomplish. You can win your 'game' by just simply scaling that wall--Cirno could even fly you over. Not only would your escape remove a great deal of weight on my conscience, I need you to confirm or disconfirm your hypothesis about winning the game. You called me here to help you escape, and I have fulfilled this service to you to the best of my abilities: Grant me this single favor and bow out gracefully."
[x] "I am staying because the life of someone I care about is in danger. If there truly is some malevolent force at work here I will uncover it, but not at the cost of her life, or at the cost of yours."

Maybe this display will teach Flandre something about humans. At the very least, if this doesn't convince Nathaniel to leave, we'll know that all his explanations have been utter duplicity, and his true goal here is as yet unstated.

I like Nathaniel. I really do. If he goes I will miss him, but if he stays I will surely come to hate him.
>> No. 25370
[x] "Nathaniel, you're leaving. Glish is Adam now, but even when he was himself, he didn't want to leave. You have your three artifacts. You did what you came here to accomplish. You can win your 'game' by just simply scaling that wall--Cirno could even fly you over. Not only would your escape remove a great deal of weight on my conscience, I need you to confirm or disconfirm your hypothesis about winning the game. You called me here to help you escape, and I have fulfilled this service to you to the best of my abilities: Grant me this single favor and bow out gracefully."
[x] "I am staying because the life of someone I care about is in danger. If there truly is some malevolent force at work here I will uncover it, but not at the cost of her life, or at the cost of yours."

This is it, barring plot hax, its time for him to exit the stage.
>> No. 25371
[x] "Nathaniel, you're leaving. Glish is Adam now, but even when he was himself, he didn't want to leave. You have your three artifacts. You did what you came here to accomplish. You can win your 'game' by just simply scaling that wall--Cirno could even fly you over. Not only would your escape remove a great deal of weight on my conscience, I need you to confirm or disconfirm your hypothesis about winning the game. You called me here to help you escape, and I have fulfilled this service to you to the best of my abilities: Grant me this single favor and bow out gracefully."
[x] "I am staying because the life of someone I care about is in danger. If there truly is some malevolent force at work here I will uncover it, but not at the cost of her life, or at the cost of yours."
>> No. 25372
>You glare at him. “The day I trust you completely, Nathaniel The Wanderer, is the day I find someone who is incapable of lying.”

The next day, Mr.Farmer meets Suika Ibuki, says to Nathaniel "My Bad".

[x] Walk over to the mansion doors, and do…nothing? Something?

[x] Time to back to our room to change and rest. We'll deal with Nathaniel and this mansion's game tomorrow.
>> No. 25374
[X] Walk over to the statue and pick up the wand. Give it back to Flandre.
[X] "You really need to find a less painful way to learn..."
[X] "...So tell me, what did you learn from this game?"

Might as well find out what we lost an eye for.
>> No. 25375
What marks a good CYOA? One that sparks interest, intrigue, and most of all, thoughts. Never before have I seen a CYOA that made me baffle at myself, wondering what to do next. Every action seems risky. The presence of an unknown variable of insanity in not one, but two characters only deepens this conundrum.

Honestly? I have no idea how to go about this. Telling Johnthaniel to leave has us assume quite a lot: that we don't need him to leave ourselves, and that he has no other reason to stay. I firmly believe we need him to stand with us. We've done more than stick out our neck for him; why not have him return the favor?

And personally, I don't think U.N. Owen would develop a character so far and just have him leave mid-story. He's sticking with us.

I think another encounter with Flandre is inevitable; I don't think we can sneak past. Of all of us, Johnthaniel seemed to click with her the most, have him speak with her about the tests we've "passed". My verdict as for what to do?

[x] "Miss Flandre. It seems we have passed your little 'test'."
[x] Gauge her response, see if she's hostile/docile/sane?
Act accordingly to situation.
[x] Have Johnthaniel reason with her if possible. He stands the best chance of anyone here.

Additional thoughts:
We have no idea what the other residents of SDM are up to in regards to this little escapade. Perhaps they are honestly left in the dark and are willing to aid us from our perils with Flandre. Perhaps they in on it, feigning nonchalance, knowing their guests are facing death? Who's innocent, and who's guilty? I wouldn't trust anyone but Glish, Johnthaniel, and Cirno at this point until proven otherwise. Take caution, Mystical Farmer, when (if?) we reenter the mansion.

And yes, I'm calling him Johnthaniel because Cirno does.
>> No. 25376
[x] Walk over to the mansion doors, and do…nothing? Something?
[x] Go inside, seek medical attention for Cirno and yourself.
>> No. 25377
The image of this i have in my mind...

[X] Walk over to the statue and pick up the wand; Give it back to Flandre.
[X] Ruefully... "What have you learned?"
([X] Forgiveness, if others here would allow it.)

While this might be against Mystic Farmer's view of her, I cannot bring myself to feel anything other than sympathy for Flandre... Forgiveness. While certainly i could not speak from the perspective of a locked-away 500-year old vampire, to a limited extent, i can understand her dilemma from a personal perspective.

> “I…I can’t understand things very well,” she replies pitiably. “I don’t know what life is…what death is…love…pain…fear…trust. I can read them in books, but I don’t know what they really mean. I can’t go outside and ask people; Sister Remilia won’t let me. So I stay inside. I stay down here. I ask the people who come and visit me. And sometimes, when they play with me, I understand a little better. You’ll help me understand, won’t you? You’ll help me learn?”

As such, i cannot hate her.
As such, we should help her.
Though this opinion will likely go largely unanswered, it is my will in this matter; What happens will.
>> No. 25378
>>25375
>I have no idea how to go about this. Telling Johnthaniel to leave has us assume quite a lot: that we don't need him to leave ourselves

What do we need him for then? He's been the target of multiple assassination attempts by Sakuya, whom we've already been written off by as disposable. He can't danmaku. He obviously can't defend himself against Flandre. The threat of him being in eminent danger didn't help the last time Adam went nutty. So unless you think we'll be encountering more Rumias anytime soon, to the Farmer, the man is a lunatic who just put a bullet in his maidservant. Less than an ally, he's a liability at best, and at worst is still just using the Farmer as an expendable means to an end.

>and that he has no other reason to stay.

We know why he'll want to stay; it's the same reason he created his weapons and the reason he'll sell us out again at next opportunity (without hard feelings of course): He wants to be a hero. It's his childhood dream. He wants some great evil to defeat to vindicate all those years he spent creating these weapons of his.

But what he's repeated to the Farmer so many times is that he just wants to get out of here, going as far as summon us here in the first place. He needs to come clean with us, and the only way to do that is to call his bluff.

>And personally, I don't think U.N. Owen would develop a character so far and just have him leave mid-story. He's sticking with us.

And I happen to think he's a writer who is capable of killing off one of his characters when the story needs it.

And we're not mid-story; we are clearly nearing the end-game.

>> No. 25380
[X] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Meow."
>> No. 25381
>>25380

I'm going to have to amend my vote, assuming we not face with another dilemma dealing with Nathaniel:

[x] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Meow."

This is the only appropriate response to one's jailer after escaping from her deathtrap. Flandre's older, more jaded self might even find it funny. If only we still had that dynamite.
>> No. 25384
>>25378
>He can't danmaku. He obviously can't defend himself against Flandre.

I don't think any of us can at this point, especially in our condition. Even so, better to even the odds a little with a justice-sword-wielding, dual-barrelled-gun-bearing, time-stop-watch-holding engineering genius at our side. And his relationship with Glish is important for us to consider.

>So unless you think we'll be encountering more Rumias anytime soon, to the Farmer, the man is a lunatic who just put a bullet in his maidservant.

Perception is entirely up to the beholder. Accidents happen in battle. It was pitch black; he was being attacked by a foe he couldn't see. A stray bullet hitting a dear friend may tug at the heartstrings, but it's still most likely an accident. And for whoever's pulling the strings behind all this, I'm sure placing more distrust between Mystic Farmer and Johnthaniel is exactly what he/she wants.

As for your statements on his reason for staying, I agree. I meant it to say that the current option of telling him to leave would be futile.

As for the rest... like you, I refuse to beleive he'll just up and leave; and I'll agree that his death is a likelihood. And yes, it does seem to be more end-game than mid-story; I'll concede to that. I was saying that because I beleive there's still much more to this story for it to continue for still quite some time, and Johnthaniel is integral to this story for the time being.
>> No. 25386
File 123172995210.jpg - (255.08KB , 500x600 , 469864.jpg ) [iqdb]
25386
>>25367
[X] Address Nathaniel and Cirno: "I'm returning to the mansion and whatever else that means, but I think right now is your best chance of getting out of here alive. This is my choice, and I'm giving you yours: I won't make you leave and I won't ask you to stay. Nathaniel, the end to your game is on the other side of that wall. Cirno, you leaving here alive would mean a lot to me after I dragged you into this. Probably doesn't sound too convincing, but please don't worry about me. I think as long as I avoid any more of Flandre's requests I can handle myself."
[X] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Would you mind sharing what you learned from our game?"

I'd write more, but it's long enough as it is. It's all about free will, man. We make our choice, they make theirs. Nat brought us here to help him get out. Cirno is (apparently) fated to die while she is here. Well hey: far from the mansion, out of the line of site for the main gate, an apparently unconcerned batch of mansion residents, and a magic watch that stops time. Now is the prime opportunity to let our friends free themselves of whatever hell awaits from here on out. If they leave, a man with great prospects in life and a young girl with untold amounts of potential are saved. If they stay, they may die meaningless deaths alongside a nameless farmer whose greatest achievement was showing up. I'm not trying to sell us short, but our greatest potential is in solving the mysteries of the Scarlet Devil Mansion. Whether Cirno and Nat need to be around for that hasn't really been determined. Not that I'd be upset if they stayed. Far from it I guess. Cirno is a constant joy to have around, and while Nat can be annoying as hell sometimes he's still a decent guy (who says he has our back and is loaded down with some respectable tools). They just deserve their say in the matter is all.

Also, a chat with vampire under the starry skies. It has a certain charm to it, a type of "romance" brought on by a detachment from reality due to physical torture and emotional duress.

For some reason, I really want Flandre and Cirno to be friends. I don't know why the sentiment is coming up now, but I get the sense they'd make a great pair.

Anyway, on a side note, glad you liked the 9 trailer U.N. Owen. Just wanted more people to be as excited about the movie as I am; didn't think anyone would be getting all inspired. Works out pretty well in the end I guess.
>> No. 25389
File 123173265182.png - (45.45KB , 790x690 , IcecreamMaidCirno.png ) [iqdb]
25389
This has nothing to do with anything, but I found this just lying about on these here Internets the kids are all talking about these days. You can have it.

My update schedule may be a little wobbly while I get used to my new class schedule this semester. Please wait warmly, etcetera etcetera.
>> No. 25391
[X] Address Nathaniel and Cirno: "I'm returning to the mansion and whatever else that means, but I think right now is your best chance of getting out of here alive. This is my choice, and I'm giving you yours: I won't make you leave and I won't ask you to stay. Nathaniel, the end to your game is on the other side of that wall. Cirno, you leaving here alive would mean a lot to me after I dragged you into this. Probably doesn't sound too convincing, but please don't worry about me. I think as long as I avoid any more of Flandre's requests I can handle myself."
[X] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Would you mind sharing what you learned from our game?"
>> No. 25395
[x] "Nathaniel, you're leaving. Glish is Adam now, but even when he was himself, he didn't want to leave. You have your three artifacts. You did what you came here to accomplish. You can win your 'game' by just simply scaling that wall--Cirno could even fly you over. Not only would your escape remove a great deal of weight on my conscience, I need you to confirm or disconfirm your hypothesis about winning the game. You called me here to help you escape, and I have fulfilled this service to you to the best of my abilities: Grant me this single favor and bow out gracefully."
[x] "I am staying because the life of someone I care about is in danger. If there truly is some malevolent force at work here I will uncover it, but not at the cost of her life, or at the cost of yours."

Good choice. He needs to leave the Stage
>> No. 25396
>>25384
>And for whoever's pulling the strings behind all this, I'm sure placing more distrust between Mystic Farmer and Johnthaniel is exactly what he/she wants.

But there isn't anyone pulling the strings--at least, no omnipotent evil that will force the hero and his rival to team up against, despite it probably desiring to appear as such. It's much stupider than that. Remilia said it quite clearly: She wants you to fulfill your dreams, and in doing so, she hopes to discover her own. This is not some grand conspiracy; it's just Flandre's 'game' on a higher level, the existential crisis of a 500-year-old child shackled with an immense amount of power and responsibility. She's become so morbid as to take a time-stopping vampire hunter as her maid, whose plot even now hangs over her head like the sword of Damocles, of which Remilia is doubtlessly aware of and will do nothing to prevent.

The lost timeline Nathaniel experienced is easily explained; she was just showing him what he needed to see in order to become the person he wanted to become, and conveniently had already provided him the tools for reversing the events (those cards). Farmer now gets to be the star of an adventure, where she may or may not end up reprising her role as antagonist. Cirno has started on the path to truly becoming strong. Sakuya gets to fulfill the goal she's been working so hard at for the last three years. Rumia gets to regenerate with her ribbon removed. Flandre gets a brother to fill the role as sibling that she could not. Adam gets the family he was born without. Everything is wrapped up in a tight little package, and the only thing to be settled then is to sit back and wait to die.
>> No. 25397
>>25396
Owen needs to rethink his story i think. This Guy just figured everything out.
>> No. 25398
>>25396
Well. Crap.

That would certainly explain the little hole in Nathaniel's theory about Remilia's motives for the "game". If her objective was domination or whatever, why give the people you are supposedly manipulating to reach her ends such a powerful means of undoing her potential victory as those cards?

For that matter, if Remilia is the one responsible for those cards and what they do, then I have to question just what is there left of her power that she needs to test or figure out? Once you're manipulating fate to such a degree that you can actually go back in time to change it, I'd say you've hit a level of mastery where you don't have to worry much about subtlety.

Of course, the only thing I have to question about this theory is just what is Sakuya's role in all of this, and why, if things are seemingly going well, is it that she notes that things might end badly? What is it that she's so afraid of happening?
>> No. 25401
>>25396
BRIX.

I tihnk.
>> No. 25405
[ ] Turn around; try to scale the nearest wall.

GTFO this place and win the fucking game already.
>> No. 25407
>>25405

No can do. We still have to resolve the issue of the loss of Cirno's regeneration.
>> No. 25409
>>25407
Exactly.
Although it's possible that leaving the mansion will allow her regeneration to return, going by what Nathaniel said about being able to feel Remilia's influence even after going back a looooong way with his Fate card, it's just as likely that she will remain mortal wherever she goes until things get resolved.

It might still be possible for her to escape, but unless you plan on going with her and settling down together or something similar, she probably just as safe in the mansion with you than outside and separated. A mortal fairy wouldn't last very long in the wilderness of Gensokyo.
>> No. 25410
>>25409
We shall protect Cirno for the rest of her moral life with our own life.
And make lots of little Cirno's
>> No. 25411
As much as I want everyone to have their chance to speak, I am closing the polls as of right now. This whole "adios, Nathaniel" bit is going to take a while for me to plan out, considering there's probably going to be a fair bit of interesting dialog from him (thank you for providing the dialog on your side, by the way; big help there). Talking to Flandre has a fair number of votes, too, so of course I'm going to have to stick that in as well. I'll need as much time to write as I can get this afternoon, so that hopefully I can get this next segment up later this evening.

All I can say is that you're not making this easy on me. No matter what I plan, you find new ways to surprise me. It is simultaneously my greatest joy and my greatest fear of writing. I've been toying with your emotions for months; now it seems you've done the same to me. I hope you're happy.
>> No. 25412
>>25411
Now you sound just like YAF.
>> No. 25415
>>25412
Hi YAF.
>> No. 25416
>All I can say is that you're not making this easy on me. No matter what I plan, you find new ways to surprise me. It is simultaneously my greatest joy and my greatest fear of writing. I've been toying with your emotions for months; now it seems you've done the same to me. I hope you're happy.

Yes, it's a wonderful thing isn't it?
>> No. 25418
[Nathaniel-based write in. Tell Nathaniel to leave, and not exactly politely.]
[Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre. Ask her what she learned from her “game”.]

You’ve done it. Flandre’s game is finally over. You lost an eye in the process, but you, Cirno, and Nathaniel have all made it out of the tunnels alive. Did she learn anything from it? Who knows. Did you learn anything from it? Definitely. You’ve learned that you care about Cirno a lot more than you thought. You’ve learned that you’re capable of shedding a lot more blood than you thought. You’ve learned that you can never learn anything from Nathaniel, even when he’s directly answering your questions. And furthermore…you’ve learned that it’s time for him to go.

His mission is over. Revelation is repaired and functioning, Equitas is safe in his hands, as is his equally-precious Seraphim. That’s all he cared about, right? That was his goal, wasn’t it? Protect his “children”, as he called them, and leave the mansion behind him. He’s go no reason to stay, and frankly, you don’t want him to anymore. He’s a liability, he’s a threat, he’s an enigma, he’s a fanatic, he’s everything that could screw up your life right now. It’s time for the two of you to part ways, once and for all.

“Nathaniel,” you say sternly, grabbing his attention away from gazing at the perched Flandre. “I think it’s time for you to go.” You symbolically untie the bra from around his wrist to illustrate.

“Go?” he questions, looking a little puzzled before comprehending something. “Mmm, yes, you’re right. No time to waste, I suppose; that mansion and I still have business to attend to. Let’s move, then, if you’re so keen on it.”

“No, I mean it’s time for you to leave. Leave this mansion, this island...leave Gensokyo.”

He doesn’t respond, and Cirno seems to be between the emotions of confusion and…well, confusion, from what you’ve just said. Nathaniel gives you a good hard look in the eye, unblinking, unwavering. He’s trying to be as hard as iron, but you’ve already made your decision: his part in this story is over.

“And why would I be leaving, Mr. Farmer?” he asks you coldly.

You tense yourself up for a few seconds before responding; you want to make sure your message is as clear as crystal. Clenching your hands and furrowing your brow, you respond.

“You’ve done what you came to do: fix your Revelation and find your Equitas. You’ve got what you need now, and somehow you’re still alive. Just leave me alone. Leave this mansion. Your ‘game’ is won the moment you scale that wall behind you; we could even have Cirno fly you over. You’ve proven that you can run away from Remilia or whatever crazy thing you were talking about. You beat her. Go ahead. Confirm your hypothesis for yourself; I want you to. You escaping would remove a great deal of weight from my conscience. Just go, go and leave me alone.

“You’ve done enough already. You ‘Wandered’ me here so that I could help you escape, and I’ve done that to the best of my abilities. You tried to answer my questions, you helped us get past Rumia…I’m not going to bring up my problems with your actions right now. Maybe you want to still be a hero and help me out or grant me one more favor for helping you, but I don’t want it. You want to help me? Grant me this single favor and bow out gracefully, before you do anything else I might hate you for.”

He folds his arms together and closes his eyes, tipping his head and looking inwards. The breaths from his nose are deep and troubled, sometimes punctuated with a slight grumble or cough. You think you can just barely see his head shaking back and forth.

“What gives you the right?”

He opens just one eye: his right, to compliment your left. There’s no malice in it, nor disdain, relief, weariness, or anything else you can fathom. It’s just a look.

“What gives you the right to tell me to leave? You tell me that my part in this is over, that I have no reason left to be here. What about you? You’ve been through as much hell as me; so has Cirno. You make it sound like you’re going to stay while at the same time telling me to leave. What’s left here for you?”

In response, you grip Cirno’s hand resolutely, yet calmly. “Her. She’s dying, Nate, and for a fairy, that’s impossible. I am staying because the life of someone I care about is in danger. If there truly is some malevolent force at work here, I will uncover it, but not at the cost of her life, or at the cost of yours. I'm returning to the mansion and whatever else that brings with it, but I think right now is your best chance of getting out of here alive.”

Nathaniel fingers the crossguard of his sword, and only now do you realize that the emeralds in the eyes of Equitas’ dragon are the same color as Glish’s green eye.

“You know, the life of someone I care about is in danger, too. I’m not here to demean your friendship with Cirno, but I’ve known Glish a lot longer than you’ve know her, and I care about him just as much. You expect me to walk away from him, a friend, an ally, someone who’s practically a brother to me? In the hands of these, these vampires?”

“He doesn’t want to leave,” you tell him, remembering what he told you the very first time you ever met him in Room 101. “Even when he was sane, when he had his little lisp, he didn’t want to leave. He wanted to stay here with Flandre, with Remilia. He wants to help them, Nate. Let him. You’ve helped out enough; it’s time for other people to help, now.”

He looks at the sparse windows of the Scarlet Devil Mansion in the distance, the red walls clashing with the dark blue sky, getting lighter every minute. You see his knuckles grow white as he clenches a fist around the grip of Equitas, and instinctually draw back, but the hand slacks off two seconds later.

Hypocrite.

He barely said anything, but you heard it. “What? What did you just call me?”

“I called you—“ Equitas is back out of its scabbard in his right hand again, but he doesn’t point it at you, “—a hypocrite.”

You remember those eyes, that stance, this tone of voice. It’s the bathroom all over again; your relationship has come full circle once more.

“You tell me to stop being a hero, and yet all you’re doing is walking back into that building so you can try and be one yourself. You know…I bet you’re judging be because of that one thing I said, right? Of how I always dreamed of being the hero, the knight in shining armor?” You don’t respond, and he doesn’t wait for you to. “I was sixteen. Sixteen. And I was an idiot then. I was a child then. That was five years ago, Mr. Farmer. Five. Years. You think I haven’t changed in five years?

“I think there’s a distinct possibility. But, of course, I’m sure you’re just going to force some propaganda down my throat about life experiences and how good needs to triumph over evil, lest the world fall into chaos. Am I right?”

He puts his face mere centimeters from you, focusing both of his eyes on your single one.

(Okay…)
>> No. 25421
(…now it’s on.)

“Being a hero sucks. Saving the world sucks. Fighting for good sucks. Know why? ‘Cause you can’t win. You can’t kill evil. It doesn’t matter how many demons you slay, because Hell can always spawn more, and you can’t destroy Hell. Evil is stronger. Evil is easier. When you fight for good, you’re the underdog. And life isn’t about underdog stories; in the real world, the weak lose. The weak die.

“Do you think that I want to be a hero? Do you honestly think that? Do you think that I want to sacrifice my life for people like you, who don’t even like me, who can’t stand the mere mention of me? Do you think I want to fight in a war I know I can’t win, or challenge an enemy I know I can’t defeat? I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to die for something like that. I don’t want to fight. I don’t want to go back inside that mansion. I want to leave. I want to run away and count my losses.”

You motion towards the wall. “Then leave. I’m not stopping you.”

He backs up just a step or two and shakes his head. “But that’s why I won’t. Because having a purpose in life isn’t about what I want to do. It’s about what I have to do, and what I have the opportunity to do. And right now what I have is the opportunity to save you, Cirno, Glish, and everyone else from the devil living in that mansion. I’m saving you two because it’s my fault you’re here, and I must atone somehow. I’m saving him because that’s what friends do. And I’m saving the rest because they can’t save themselves.”

You bury your face inside the palm of your right hand. “You’re saving them because that’s what a hero would do. Stop trying to save everyone, Nate! You said it yourself; you can’t win! Any one of those people inside that building will tear you apart, whether or not they’re evil! Fighting when you know you’ll lose is just throwing your life away! You can’t save anyone if you’re dead! Stop being a hero! Just go!”

He walks over to your right side, back turned to you. Equitas shakes in his hand, almost to the point where you think the blade could wobble right out of the grip. When he speaks, there is only cold indifference.

“That’s it. I’m done trying.”

He sheathes his sword and turns back to you. His words are quick and full of annoyance about something.

“I gave you every opportunity to believe me,” he says, “and you spat in my face. I put up with your suspicion of me, your pessimism, your disdain, your hatred. No more. No more. If you’re not going to listen to a word I say, why should I listen to a word you say?! You want me to leave Gensokyo? Leave it in the hands of Remilia? No. You want be to stop being a hero, stop trying to save everyone? No. I can’t. I can’t, and I won’t. I won’t, because no one else will. I fight and lose so that someday other people might win. But if I don’t fight, if nobody fights, then we all lose. You’re sure as Hell exists not going to fight her, which means Cirno probably won’t either, and everyone else that could is under her spell. I’m nobody…but at least one nobody has a better chance than zero nobodies.”

He looks upwards musingly at Flandre, who is still oblivious to the conversation taking place below her. “Those crystals in her wings are phylacteries for her soul, you know. Not that you’d believe me even if I told you what that meant.” With this enigmatic sentence he simply starts walking away, towards the mansion.

“Where the heck are you going, idiot?! I’m telling you to leave!” you shout back at him.

He stops, but does not turn around. “I am going to go try and kill Remilia Scarlet, using whatever means available to me, and nothing you do or say is going to stop me. I will most likely die trying, and in all probability everything I have done will have been in vain. This is the moment where we part ways, Mr. Farmer. May you have a simpler life than I.” He continues walking, and you’re so full of emotions right now that you can only stare at his back and let him.

“Mr. Stupid,” Cirno tugs at your bloodied shirt and points towards the horizon. “Look, Mr. Stupid. It’s the sun. It’s…it’s morning again.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The End Of The Fourth Day
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


[ ] Talking to Flandre is currently locked in as a vote. If you wish to expound on your inquiries with her, or perhaps choose a different action now, please do so during this break.

========================================

Taking a short break here, since it’s the end of the game day, and this segment is already running a bit long. If you want, feel free to vote for new ideas. If not, just wait for the next update sometime tomorrow.

>>25369
>I like Nathaniel. I really do. If he goes I will miss him, but if he stays I will surely come to hate him.
He doesn’t care about your pity. He doesn’t care about your hate either. And he won’t be leaving until this is truly over. As if you thought your words would change that.

Amazing idea, though; I must say. I did not expect this.

>>25375
>What marks a good CYOA? One that sparks interest, intrigue, and most of all, thoughts. Never before have I seen a CYOA that made me baffle at myself, wondering what to do next. Every action seems risky. The presence of an unknown variable of insanity in not one, but two characters only deepens this conundrum.
And it takes good readers as well as a good writer for such a story to reach such a level of intelligence. This is an awesome compliment to receive, but remember that you too are an integral part of the process. Thank you, and you are most welcome.

>>25380
I am now making that Metal Gear Solid “!” noise.

>>25386
>Also, a chat with vampire under the starry skies. It has a certain charm to it, a type of "romance" brought on by a detachment from reality due to physical torture and emotional duress.
The kind of love only Flandre can bring.

>For some reason, I really want Flandre and Cirno to be friends. I don't know why the sentiment is coming up now, but I get the sense they'd make a great pair.
Because they’re both the strongest!

>Anyway, on a side note, glad you liked the 9 trailer U.N. Owen. Just wanted more people to be as excited about the movie as I am; didn't think anyone would be getting all inspired. Works out pretty well in the end I guess.
Aha, so it was you! I must thank you again for posting that link; I’m extremely excited about that movie now. And I didn’t think I was going to be inspired either. It just sort of came out of nowhere. And the funny thing is, the inspiration has very little to do with the movie’s premise itself.

>>25396
Hmmm…

And that’s all I have to say about that.

>>25416
Quite.
>> No. 25422
Well, so much about worrying about keeping him as an ally. Of course, it seems kinda silly to have made a point of going back down into the tunnels, keeping him with you, and ensuring he would come back up with you only to try to cut him loose as soon as you hit topside.

And now, possibly the most knowledgeable and combat-capable ally you is now going off to face what even he expects to be his demise.
Nice work. Better hope he was wrong about his whole "Remilia is evil and blah blah blah" theory, because if he wasn't and he dies, we're as doomed as doomed can be.
...as if we weren't already, that is.
>> No. 25423
>>25418
>>25421
One of the best parts that you have written yet. This made my heart beat faster.

>He walks over to your right side, back turned to you. Equitas shakes in his hand, almost to the point where you think the blade could wobble right out of the grip

I really thought this would turn into a battle right here and right now. Well, we have screwed him up now 100%, he will probably never trust someone again. He should have been more truthful with us, then it wouldn't have ended that way. His sense of justice and heroism reminds me of FSN, but i am not sure if it's Shirous or Archers.....
>> No. 25424
>I fight and lose so that someday other people might win. But if I don’t fight, if nobody fights, then we all lose. You’re sure as Hell exists not going to fight her, which means Cirno probably won’t either, and everyone else that could is under her spell. I’m nobody…but at least one nobody has a better chance than zero nobodies.”

How useless. He's given up before he's even begun, he's just gonna go off and kill himself for pointless heroics. Worse than a nobody, a useless nobody.

Those crazy enough to think they can change the world, actually do.
>> No. 25425
File 12318211574.jpg - (258.04KB , 924x924 , 2710451.jpg ) [iqdb]
25425
>>25421
Mmm, delicious conflict. Been really looking forward to this when the write-in flumoxed the writer; did not disappoint. I was a little surprised the choice was interpreted in the most boorish way possible, but considering the sentiment about the guy it makes sense.

It makes me wonder if Nat ever liked the farmer as a person. I never really got the impression that he did. Probably didn't help that we were on guard constantly after the bathroom incident, though. Actually, that's kinda nuts because we forgave Cirno nearly instantly after the icicle incident. Moral of the story: a timely and genuine apology goes a long way. What would a sincere "sorry I freaked out the other day" have done to our relationship? Or maybe a "thank you" when told him we found the sword, got back Equitas back in his hands, or fixed his watch? Would a "please believe me" or "please find justice" have been more convincing than "why don't you believe me?" and "bring be justice"? Nit-picky little details, but the absence of these common courtesies have subconcious effects on your perception of a person. He never really treated us like our opinion, consent, or point of view mattered. I also wonder why he never asked: "why don't you believe me?" I don't think he ever liked us because we weren't a person to him: we were just a means to an end. Which is pretty sad because Nat's not a bad guy at all.

But, we've parted ways. Probably for the best. When ideologies are in conflict and one (or both) of the parties refuse to look at the situation from the other person's point of view you're asking for trouble (mediation 101). For someone as untrusting as farmer and someone as unwaiveringly idealistic as Nathaniel, seeing eye to eye on this wasn't going to happen without a serious shift in thinking. Nat is well established in his ways, and we've come a long way operating under the paradigm of informed decision making when it is all but necessary to do otherwise. Short of a dramatic change, we'd never reach a compromise. I take comfort in our path, though. Adopting an unwaveringly conventional school of thinking and understanding of the situation would have lead us to dismissing Cirno as a dumb fairy like everyone else. Instead of listening to what others tell us about her, we learned for ourselves and tried to understand her. The rewards for such have been well worth the effort. Hopefully the same approach works with Remilia and Flandre, because it didn't with Nat. We learned everything he was willing to share and still couldn't wrap our brain around him, but I chalk that up to our fundamentally different mentalities. His black and white world vs. our shades of grey. His objectivity vs. our subjectivity. Absolute vs. relative. Two sides of the same coin, man; just a matter of what is face up at the end of the story.

Ah well, different view points make the world go round. While the task in front of Nat is certainly an unenviable one, the challenge we've posed ourselves is an order of magnitude more difficult. All he has to do is fight as hard as possible with everything he has. We're trying to unravel the who/what/where/when/why/how of a three hundred year old mystery with monstrously powerful beings that could wipe us from existence without a passing thought. Single-mindedly raging against the system is so much easier in theory and practice than trying to understand and fix the system instead. So while I disagree with Nat, a paraphrase of the great sage Chris Rock summarizes my thoughts on the subject: "I'm not saying he should try to kill her, but I understand."

As an aside, what would the story have been like if it was "Natalie" instead of "Nathaniel." My notion is that we'd be falling all over ourselves trying to woo the delicious yandere.

Oh yeah:
[X] Walk over to the statue and say something to get Flandre's attention: "Meow~"
[X] "Would you mind sharing what you learned from our game?"

Bit of the ol' GATTAI DA for greater justice.
>> No. 25426
>>25424
He's going off to attempt something he knows he has little chance of surviving, let alone succeeding, rather than simply cutting his losses and escaping with his life, and you say he's giving up?

One does not change the world by simply being crazy enough to think they can. That's simply being delusional. They change it by also being crazy enough to TRY to change it, despite knowing the likelihood that they will fail. The thoughts might provide the motivation, but it is the actions that make a difference.

Nathaniel is doing just that. He believes that Remilia Scarlet is evil, is manipulating everyone around her for some reason or another, that whatever she ultimately does will not be good for anyone or anything, and apparently that the only way to stop this is to stop HER, and so is now off to attempt just that. Even knowing he has a minimal chance of success, he clearly believes that even those odds are better than if he did not try at all.

The only things he is giving up on is the chance of an alternative solution, and us, upon which convincing him of such a solution depended on.

If there is anyone that's giving up, it's Mr. Farmer. Nathaniel made it perfectly clear what it was he believed, and despite not entirely agreeing with him he still agreed to help us, to fight for us, until either one became convinced of the belief of the other, or circumstances finally forced us to go our separate ways. We could have stuck together going back into the mansion, him watching our back while we sought our own answers to the mansion's game. Who knows, perhaps we might have eventually come around to agree with Nathaniel's beliefs, or vice versa.

Yet, instead, we chose to cut him loose, to send him on his way. We chose to write him off, disregard his beliefs, and give up on his helping us, and so it's only fair that he do the same to us in return.
>> No. 25427
>Well, so much about worrying about keeping him as an ally. Of course, it seems kinda silly to have made a point of going back down into the tunnels, keeping him with you, and ensuring he would come back up with you only to try to cut him loose as soon as you hit topside.

We didn't help him out of there because we like the guy. It was just the decent thing to do. Farmer is a drop of humanity in sea of fear and loathing. Now he's allowed us to wash our hands of him. Good on us.

>Nice work. Better hope he was wrong about his whole "Remilia is evil and blah blah blah" theory, because if he wasn't and he dies, we're as doomed as doomed can be.

If his theory is correct, then by definition there's nothing that could be done about it. Which is why he admits he has no chance. He doesn't see this as a contradiction. You see a person like Nathaniel is born with a big hole in him: He'll never acquire enough, or create enough, or be loved enough to ever fill it, and because he cannot find a reason to live, he's instead found a reason to die.

[x] "Meow." Deadpan.
[x] "I don't suppose you'll turn to ash now that dawn is broken? Another folk-myth shattered."
[x] "Adam said he thought of a new piano tune you might like."

Honestly, I don't really care what she learned or what she wants to tell us that we learned. She's just insane. And though I pity her for it, it doesn't change what she is. How many times must we act out the parable of the Scorpion and the Turtle before we learn this?
>> No. 25428
>You bury your face inside the palm of your right hand.

I'm trying hard not to do the same toward Mystical Farmer. This, it seems, is where my thoughts and emotions diverge from the rest of you guys. I sympathize with Johnthaniel in this completely. If nothing else, my respect for him rose even higher. Sure, he's dead-set in his black-and-white beliefs, beliefs that I myself disagree with, but letting him go on his own is the worst thing that can happen. Now he's surely marching off to his own demise. Barring Cirno (and perhaps Ran), we just lost our most powerful ally.

I don't mean to sound indignant or antagonistic, but that's how I feel. Regardless, what's done is done, and this rant of mine accomplishes nothing. I'll need to reflect on this, to think on how I'll vote on choices now in regards to this change.

...on a lighter note, I find it amazing that U.N. Owen can write a story in such a way that even the thoughts of the readers are divided. Truly a gifted writer.
>> No. 25429
>>25426
>Nathaniel is doing just that. He believes that Remilia Scarlet is evil, is manipulating everyone around her for some reason or another, that whatever she ultimately does will not be good for anyone or anything, and apparently that the only way to stop this is to stop HER, and so is now off to attempt just that. Even knowing he has a minimal chance of success, he clearly believes that even those odds are better than if he did not try at all.

Just because a man is willing to die for his cause doesn't make him right. Nathaniel has a certain morality that allows him to do whatever he wants, regardless of the consequences to those around him: "Do what is right, though the world should perish." That mentality doesn't suit someone as down to earth as Farmer, someone who has come to care for the life of someone who nearly killed him a few days ago. And unlike Nathaniel, Farmer has actual, realizable goals, such as saving Cirno and not dying. Nathaniel doesn't even know what he hopes to accomplish; he's just running on the adrenaline high he got from hacking Rumia to pieces. After this last outburst, I'm happy to see him go, because he seems fully intent on taking everyone else down around him.

>If there is anyone that's giving up, it's Mr. Farmer. Nathaniel made it perfectly clear what it was he believed, and despite not entirely agreeing with him he still agreed to help us, to fight for us, until either one became convinced of the belief of the other, or circumstances finally forced us to go our separate ways. We could have stuck together going back into the mansion, him watching our back while we sought our own answers to the mansion's game. Who knows, perhaps we might have eventually come around to agree with Nathaniel's beliefs, or vice versa.

And the Farmer made it perfectly clear that he did not believe in the black and white categories that Nathaniel did. To waver on that now would not only be "giving up", it would prove a fatal hubris in a "game" where strength of character is valued over ability. As the writer said, there was never any chance of the Farmer changing Nathaniel's mind about anything, and to suffer the company of someone with no regard for your thoughts or desires like Nathaniel is the mark of a coward. So spare us your limp-wristed hand-wringing; if anything it just makes my penis harder.
>> No. 25430
>>So spare us your limp-wristed hand-wringing; if anything it just makes my penis harder.
I'm getting conflicting interpretations from this colorful imagery.

I'm not going to pass any opinion on this. It's not worth complaining about having to put up with the will of majority making the decisions you find odd, that you hoped not to make. Especially when it happens so often. I'm just going to ask: why did you have to phrase it thus that Farmer *demand* Nathaniel leave? That's the part about the write-in I had disliked the most, its tone.

I guess bitter is okay.
[x] (to Flandre) "I hope we all learned something from this ..."
>>"No. Do it again."
>> No. 25431
File 123182718023.jpg - (327.19KB , 1024x778 , zombie gnome beckoning you to a warm place.jpg ) [iqdb]
25431
Somehow, I can totally see "Johnthaniel" pulling a Smeagol of some sort. Somehow. I'm really not sure why, but I can see it for some reason.
>> No. 25432
>>25430

Because that's how the farmer would say it. He'd already expressed his clear contempt and distrust, and had absolutely no patience for further swings and roundabouts.

>You glare at him. “The day I trust you completely, Nathaniel The Wanderer, is the day I find someone who is incapable of lying.”
>> No. 25434
>>25432

Yeah, but I think that his personnality is mostly functionning on how we as the voters make him perceive others.

Basically, he was only mean because all this time we've been making it quite clear in our votes that we don't want much to do with the guy.

I honestly don't have much of a problem with him, he flew off the handle 2 times and helped us out like 4 times. The guy may not be perfect, but he at least deserves respect.
>> No. 25435
>>Nathaniel doesn't even know what he hopes to accomplish

No, he knows exactly what he hopes to accomplish. The death of Remilia Scarlet, and as a result the end of whatever machinations she has and the downward spiral they would have sent the whole of Gensokyo that he himself witnessed and was basically seduced into helping bring about. Supposedly.

Whether he's right or wrong, Nathaniel knows exactly what he wants to accomplish, and has an idea of how to go about it, however idiotic and suicidal it might be.

Can you say the same for us? Saving Cirno's life and our own? All well and good, but kinda pointless if you have no idea of how to do it. If we want to get out alive, the simplest way would be to do as we just told Nathaniel to do, climb that wall, and never look back. Cirno's situation, on the other hand, is a bit more complicated, I would say. Either there's some unknown force capable of stripping even a fairy's regenerative ability away, or Nathaniel was right and Remilia is responsible for Cirno's current mortal state (which, if she's also behind the game, might also explain why Cirno was the only player to not be given any cards). Either we have to deal with some unknown force possessing enough power to alter the properties of magical beings, or a fate-manipulating vampire who hates our little fairy friend and wants her dead THAT badly. Either way, I don't think we really have much of a game-plan for that just yet, do we?

So Nathaniel has no chance of changing his stance or seeing things differently, and somehow us doing the exact same thing makes us better than him, just because we're on a different side? This game might be a test of strength of character, but just what is it that you think makes for strong character? Standing blindly behind one side, one belief, no matter what? Or seeking out other viewpoints and beliefs, admitting when your own is mistaken, and shifting yourself accordingly?

See, the problem with remaining steadfast on our current position and claiming any shift from it to be "giving up" or something similar is to ignore one very real possibility; that we're WRONG. To say you don't believe Nathaniel's story or stance is one thing, but without anything to back it up, what makes his his position any more or less wrong than our own? We still have much we need to find out on our own, but therein lies the problem...

If we seek out the truth to all of this, only to find out Nathaniel was right, or at least more so than we were, what then?
If going along with someone who doesn't care what you think or want might be the mark of a coward, then remaining dead-set on one idea or position despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is the mark of an idiot.
>> No. 25436
>Whether he's right or wrong, Nathaniel knows exactly what he wants to accomplish, and has an idea of how to go about it, however idiotic and suicidal it might be.

No, because according to the rules of Remilia's game that he believes in, his desires to kill Remilia are themselves something manipulated and wished for by her. He's just party to a very extravagant suicide. Even more so, he relishes the role, happy to throw his life away for this performance!

>Either way, I don't think we really have much of a game-plan for that just yet, do we?

Not so. It's already been suggested we talk to Patchouli about it, and then Sakuya.

>So Nathaniel has no chance of changing his stance or seeing things differently, and somehow us doing the exact same thing makes us better than him, just because we're on a different side?

Apologist nonsense. Of course it does. We can't both be right if our views contradict each other. The fact doesn't preclude anyone from forming strong opinions about things. There difference between him and Farmer is, whether right or wrong he's not going to attempt to murdering someone.

>See, the problem with remaining steadfast on our current position and claiming any shift from it to be "giving up" or something similar is to ignore one very real possibility; that we're WRONG. To say you don't believe Nathaniel's story or stance is one thing, but without anything to back it up, what makes his his position any more or less wrong than our own? We still have much we need to find out on our own, but therein lies the problem...

Maybe that sort of free-wheeling mentality, is appropriate playing poker or E-Card, but when the chips you're playing with are people's lives, it's time to serious the fuck up, not to double down on the bust card. And your argument undercuts itself: If there's no reason to believe in Nathaniel or not believe in Nathaniel, why should I bother changing my choice to match yours?

>If we seek out the truth to all of this, only to find out Nathaniel was right, or at least more so than we were, what then?

That's the thing, there isn't a way to ever know in the first place. The very nature of the 'game' precludes one from ever knowing if it exists or not, or from effecting any real change in it. But thankfully parsimony allows us to attribute our circumstances to the very simple and human qualities we find around us.

>If going along with someone who doesn't care what you think or want might be the mark of a coward, then remaining dead-set on one idea or position despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is the mark of an idiot.

There is no evidence but the rhetoric of a madman. Not even wrong, his theory isn't even falsifiable!
>> No. 25437
[X] Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Would you mind sharing what you learned from our game?"
>> No. 25438
>>No, because according to the rules of Remilia's game that he believes in, his desires to kill Remilia are themselves something manipulated and wished for by her. He's just party to a very extravagant suicide. Even more so, he relishes the role, happy to throw his life away for this performance!

I did say "whether he's right or wrong" for a reason, you know. The statement was that he didn't know what he hoped to accomplish, when clearly he did. That his belief might be misguided or even wrong doesn't make his objective any less real, just doomed to failure.

>>It's already been suggested we talk to Patchouli about it, and then Sakuya.

Yeah. As I said, we don't have much of a plan. Sure, you have to start somewhere, and anything is better than nothing, but it's still not much of a plan.

>>Apologist nonsense. Of course it does. We can't both be right if our views contradict each other.

Of course we can't both be right. We can, however, both be wrong. And what happens if we are?

>>If there's no reason to believe in Nathaniel or not believe in Nathaniel, why should I bother changing my choice to match yours?

I think you misunderstand. I'm not questioning believing Nathaniel versus not believing Nathaniel, I'm questioning believing in Nathaniel's versus believing in yours. Whatever reason Nathaniel has for believing what he does, our own side seems more based upon opposing him for the sake of opposing him. For talking about needing to "serious the fuck up" in a situation such as this, taking a stance against a guy where you deny anything he says as being even possibly valid if not completely true, just because you don't like the person saying it seems like a rather petty thing to do. When that same person announced his intention to help you get out of this dire situation alive, may very well have the knowledge and skills to do it, then it's both petty AND stupid.

No, we have yet to see any real clear-cut evidence that Remilia is the one behind this game, that she has some sinister motive behind it, or that she's evil (shitty treatment of Meiling aside).

>>There is no evidence but the rhetoric of a madman. Not even wrong, his theory isn't even falsifiable!

You say of the man who employed the Bible to "prove" dragons exist.
Still, how do you know you cannot prove him false before even seeking evidence that could do so? You really think there's no way to prove that Remilia isn't evil? That she isn't behind this game, or have some nefarious plan? That some of the other things Nathaniel has said, such as what he thinks is the reason for Cirno's problem, can't be verified in any way?
We've seen what those cards can do, we've seen that list Sakuya has been keeping, and from that warning Lucid Flandre gave us we know there's more going on here than we've seen.
If you think there's no way to prove of disprove what Nathaniel has told us, it's only because you've yet to even try to find a method of doing so.
>> No. 25440
I really think anon dropped the ball on this one. Instead of having Nat simply following us and helping us and not interfering with your discussion with Remilia... you've now probably sent him to his death, lost our semi-trump card against Sakuya, and may have started a series of event that will bite us in the ass.

Do you really think that the only consequence of this will be his death? The shit is going to hit the fan because of this, and its no one's fault except your own. For all you know, you may have just made it impossible to truly solve this mystery. Nice going anon. Instead of meeting with Remilia and PROVING him wrong, you chose to be petty and completely disregard him or his feelings.

Not that I really liked Nat in the first place, but this was a bit much. If we can forgive a crazy wand-weilding vampire child that just unleashed untold horrors on us "just because", then why couldn't we forgive some crazy hero that never actually did anything that could be perceived as deliberately against us.

If you think about it, Nat just became our scapegoat because we didn't want to blame anyone else. If anything, we should be mad at Flandre, who is the only (currently living) character who could really be called evil (even if that's only part of her personality).

TL;DR: Nice standard. In fact, made it a double.
>> No. 25442
>>25440
>If you think about it, Nat just became our scapegoat because we didn't want to blame anyone else. If anything, we should be mad at Flandre, who is the only (currently living) character who could really be called evil (even if that's only part of her personality).

You're forgetting about anon's weakness for lolis.
>> No. 25443
File 123185727586.gif - (24.32KB , 500x600 , 1175015698736.gif ) [iqdb]
25443
>>25440
Anon screwing himself and everyone else over for one silly reason or another? What else is new?

To be fair, Nathaniel does deserve some share of the blame he receives for being, by his own admission, the one responsible for bringing us here in the first place. That does, however, ignore the fact that for all the bad things that have happened as a result, there have been some good things that he would be equally accountable for, such as getting the chance to meet a certain special someone.

Of course, acknowledging such a thing as that would pretty much require Anon to swallow his pride and, heaven forbid, actually be in some way thankful to the theatrics-prone fellow he hates so very much.
If Anon were capable of that, though, he wouldn't have disregarded Flandre telling us to "trust him" while in her brief moment of clarity, and thus we might not be in the situation we now find ourselves in.
>> No. 25444
File 123186286383.jpg - (295.71KB , 500x4286 , 1231785780140.jpg ) [iqdb]
25444
It's like the first run of MiG all over again. Hint: raging over anon's decisions doesn't accomplish anything. If you're upset, did you try to dissuade the offending vote? Was the argument convincing? If not, you've got no one to blame but yourself. If so, you may be onto something: don't give up and make yourself heard in the future. Learn, move on, and vote smart (vote S Mart). Vote fast, too. Anon likes to glom onto the first shiny vote as soon as possible. People that think about votes and analyze past updates for substantiating proof have a hell of a fight trying to convince the ADD crowd sometimes.

Anyway, I'm still relatively optimistic: out of the tunnels, maid in one piece, armed, and plenty of knowledge, ideas, and leads. I don't know why Nathaniel and our parting ways is all that dramatic. I don't think we even asked him to join or help us; that was a bit of an executive decision on his part. I certainly didn't mind having the man (and those artifacts of his) watching our back, but given our difference in perception and his glowing social skills (heh, like ours are much better), I don't think he'd have anything to contribute to our investigation. Only thing it does do is introduce an unpleasant time factor: how much can we accomplish before he hauls off and attacks Remilia?

So, he's leaving because we never trusted him, which is probably a bad idea since Flandre told us to trust him. But, what the rest of the story look like if we trusted him 100%? I think we'd be planning on the best way to catch Remilia off-guard, away from the rest of the residents, and kill her. Odd that Flan would ask us to trust him on that, but she is pretty bonkers. I guess that could be fun, it might have gotten Nat to spill more details about the horror of a future where Gensokyo is under her control (which would have been really nice to know), and giving Remilia a good killing may set her straight (she's probably one of those types that wouldn't die if you killed her). It would be such a wierd departure for our character, though. Or not, I think we did fly into a killing haze in the tunnels, so maybe we'd be a pretty good murderer.

Anyway, if we're splitting because we don't want to judge Remilia as evil and something that deserve extermination (yet), I'm cool. Nat seemed chill with most everything else, but our reluctance to take his word on this has apparently been a pretty big sticking point with him. Time will tell on this one. I'd be all for apologizing and offering to help if Nat ended up being right, if only because his overly dramatic way of telling us to go fuck ourselves and die (again?) would be pretty awesome. I get the notion that U.N. Owen would get a kick out of writing that scene.

Another thing: I would rage so hard if a non-canon NPC was pivotal to the plot. It would be the ultimate troll at this point.
>> No. 25445
File 123186586428.jpg - (552.74KB , 574x4881 , die.jpg ) [iqdb]
25445
>>25444
>and giving Remilia a good killing may set her straight (she's probably one of those types that wouldn't die if you killed her)

If that truly is so (and I believe it is)... Johnthaniel's screwed. Actually, I suppose we all were from the start.

Regardless, you make some fine comments. I may be sore from this recent development, but it seems your cool head is making a good effect on mine. I like the way you think.

I guess I'll keep chugging along, going with it, but I still hope Johnthaniel and Mystical Farmer end this on better terms. He's growing to be one amazing character.
>> No. 25446
Incidentally, if anyone wants to vengeance-kill Flan for what happened before we rewound time, remember to smash the crystals.
>> No. 25447
>>25446

We don't have the stuff we need to smash them though. The only thing we can do once we kill Flandre is take those crystals and drive them into our skull.
>> No. 25448
[Walk over to the statue and say something to Flandre: "Meow."]
["Would you mind sharing what you learned from our game?"]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Dawn of
THE FINAL DAY
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


You follow Cirno’s extended finger and look towards the sea of trees to the east. The faintest sliver of gold sun begins to peep up over the green woods, not quite reaching the island from this angle yet. Despite the turmoil your life has just become, you can’t help but feel at peace for just a few moments looking at the new dawn.

However, your mind won’t allow you to rest for even a few seconds more; there’s things to be done. With Nathaniel out of the picture, you’ve got to start stepping up the pace on your own investigations, before he starts killing everyone you want to talk to. And little miss Flandre has been sitting up there for far too long unattended; It’s time for one more talk with this girl. You walk over to the base of the statue and look at it for just a few seconds. The carving is pristine and perfect, polished and without blemish, as if it had been carved yesterday. You notice a small stick or stake gripped in the statue’s right hand, and at the base of the figure, an engraving rests in plain, bold letters: TEPES. Wasn’t Remilia’s middle name “Tepes” as well? Perhaps this man was one of her ancestors.

“Meow,” you say to Flandre, cooingly. “Come to see the sunrise, Miss Flandre?”

She responds, but doesn’t look down at you. “Mmm, morning little kitty. I just wanted to see the sun come up one more time before Sister scolds me again. Kitties like the sun too? I’m afraid of the sun; it makes me turn into dust if I’m out too long. But…it’s so pretty. Why should something so pretty be so dangerous?” She slips off of the shoulders of “TEPES” and alights on the ground, picking up her wand. From this perspective you can get a good view of her wings: only the yellow crystals are lit, though you think there might be a few faint glimmers from the orange ones as well. No green or blue; you think that’s a good sign, but then again, you’ve never had the time to categorize just what crystals shine at what times.

“Smart little kitties won Flandre’s game, didn’t they?” she asks, slipping to the unexposed statue’s side and looking at your missing eye. “Looks like Kitty was the one who saved everyone, meow. Did Kitty learn anything?”

You close you eye and nod. “I learned that…pain is momentary. Death is forever. I learned that you can’t save everyone, but you can still save someone.” You pause for a moment before adding, “Did you learn anything?”

She shrugs her shoulders. “You’re best friends. Only bestest friends would save each other. ‘Cause, you know, you might have died. You could have run away, but you didn’t. Best friends save best friends’ lives, ‘cause they do. I think I remember someone telling me that once…ahh, I forget who.”

You sigh; you had really hoped for something just little more “profound” after all you’ve been through. It’s Flandre, true, but still…Just a sentence about friendship? You could have told her what she just told you a day ago, right? Well, hmm…maybe not.

Flandre twirls a lock of golden hair, and her eyes become just a little sad. “Ohh…I’m sorry about your eye. I think I was being mean again; I do that sometimes. Are you okay? Did it hurt bad?”

You shrug. “I’ve got another one. What’s done is done. You’re right, though; that was pretty mean.”

She rubs the spade-shaped head of her wand, thinking. “I don’t want to be mean. But I am. I can’t help it, and I don’t know why. Do you know why, little kitty?”

An answer for why Flandre is the way she is? You don’t dare respond directly, even when her “danger crystals” are unlit. How can anyone possibly know why or how insanity happens? It just…happens, doesn’t it? And Flandre’s particular brand of insanity is more random than any you’ve even heard about, like she’s three or four different souls in the same body or something. Souls…what was Nathaniel talking about? “Phylacteries for her soul”, what is that supposed to mean? The word means nothing to you; it doesn’t even sound like a real word. And, though you hate to admit it, he’s right: you wouldn’t believe an explanation from him about it even if he told you.

Eventually you just respond with a safe, “That’s a tough question, Miss Flandre. I’m not sure if I’m quite smart enough to answer it. I don’t think there’s many who are, either.”

She mhmm-s at you quietly, now picking at her single vampire fang with a chipped fingernail, a few flaky remnants of gold nail polish still attached. The sun is just barely hitting the garden now; before too long it’ll be at the statue’s base. Vampires don’t like sunlight from what you remember; didn’t Flandre say that she’ll turn to dust if the sun hits her? You consider mentioning the mounting danger to her, but supposedly she’s already aware of it. As she slumps onto the ground, gemstone wings fanning out to either side of Mr. Tepes, the green sections slowly flicker to life, very faint at first, but gaining intensity with each sentence she speaks.

“Smart…” she muses. “Patchy’s really smart. She tries to teach me to be smart. Adam’s really smart too. He helps me out with my problems; it’s like he always knows what to say. I wanna be smart too. I remember…remember, remember…long long time ago I was really smart. I was even smarter than Sister. But, but it didn’t work. I was smart, but, I still wasn’t. Why was I smart when I was stupid? Why was I an adult when I was a kid? Why was I a woman when I was a girl? The curse…the curse…curse of Vlad Tepes. Wanted to…couldn’t. I tried…failed. Good plan…bad end. Destroy…destroy the fool in me, destroy the curse in me. Destroy the vampire that is within me. Kyuu.”

(See, she just goes kyuu…)
>> No. 25449
(…and it’s no problem.)

She grips her hand into a fist, but fortunately nothing happens, unlike with the R.I.S.K. board or her bedroom door. She’s talking to herself now completely, curled up into a little ball and rocking back and forth. And what’s more…you see a spark in the blue crystals for just a moment. It fades before you look twice, but it was there.

“My wings…where are my wings? My tooth…where is my tooth? Gone, gone gone, all gone, never more, never more. Stupid child, stupid girl, stupid sister…why won’t you be happy, why so serious? Let’s put a smile on that face! Sparkly wings, pretty wings…voices in my head, my voices in a head, in a wing, in a thing. Flitter flitter, flit flit flit like a little bat in my head. I know, I don’t know, I know I don’t know that I know. I think, I think I know, I know I don’t know I think, I don’t know I know I think. Ever more, forever more, safe and sound in a nice fluffy room.

She stands up and looks at Cirno with eyes that aren’t a part of this world. She talks to her as if she’s talking to Remilia, it seems. And she’s flailing that wand around, too. Your uncertainty grows with every second.

“Sister, why won’t you let me out? Why won’t you let me learn? Why won’t you let me grow up? Why am I so young when I’m so old? Why are you my big sister when I’m bigger than you?”

Cirno doesn’t know what to make of it all, and responds in the only way she knows how at the moment. “Uhh, Miss Flandre? I’m not, not your sister. I’m not Remilia; I’m just me. Just me, Cirno!”

Flandre furrows her brow, and the sapphire stones flare up again. You inch closer to Cirno, prepared to push her out of the way in case Flandre loses it. A worthless gesture again one such as her, but at the moment you don’t exactly have the time to think straight.

“No? No, no. You’re not my real sister. A sister would visit me more; a sister would care about me more. And Adam, Adam’s not my real brother, neither.” She turns to the statue next and points a finger at it, instantly enraged. “And you…you’re not my real grandfather.”

“Tepes” shatters into a billion grey pebbles, pelting you and Cirno with a vicious spray of painful, rocky hail. Before you can get your hand up to shield yourself a wayward fragment pelts you in your dead eye socket, immediately blinding you with agony and forcing you to the ground, your good eye crying from the pain. Cirno drops down next to you, though in identical pain or just moral support, you can’t tell. Above you Flandre begins indiscriminately reducing anything she can focus on to powder.

“This! This isn’t mine! You aren’t mine! And you aren’t mine! None of it’s mine! It’s all hers, all hers! I have nothing! I am nothing! I am no one! I am unknown!”

All around you the flowers and greens are nothing but soft, multicolored ash drifting in the morning light. Flandre’s wand shimmers with energy, seemingly vibrating and twisting shape of its own accord. She looks at both of you with eyes made of the purest kind of madness you could ever imagine.

“Why don’t you love me anymore?”

[ ] Run. Down the tunnel behind you.
[ ] Run. Towards the mansion.
[ ] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[ ] Fight. With the pistol.
[ ] Fight. With your silver knife.
[ ] Fight. With her own wand after you snatch it from her hands.
[ ] SAY SOMETHING!! (But what…?)
[ ] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[ ] Do nothing.
[ ] WriteinwriteinwriteinshesgonnakillyouWRITEIN!!

========================================

DISCUSSION!! OWEN’S WALLS PALE IN COMPARISION TO THIS DISCUSSION!! I AM NOT WORTHY!

[+] Genuflect

>>25423
I didn’t plan for it to be that epic, but I guess it is nevertheless. Farmer vs. Nathaniel…that fight wouldn’t end well.

>>25425
>As an aside, what would the story have been like if it was "Natalie" instead of "Nathaniel”? My notion is that we'd be falling all over ourselves trying to woo the delicious yandere.
Perhaps then the relationship between you two would have ended better. Ahh, the inevitable power of love between a man and a woman…
There is no Natalie route.

>>25427
>How many times must we act out the parable of the Scorpion and the Turtle before we learn this?
Considering how many times you’ve Bad Ended thus far, I’d say…one and a half?

>>25428
>...on a lighter note, I find it amazing that U.N. Owen can write a story in such a way that even the thoughts of the readers are divided. Truly a gifted writer.
Justasplanned.jpg
Seriously though, thank you very much. I’ve always tried to make your choices open-ended, to let your opinion drive the story. And if your opinion is obviously divided, well…here you are.

>>25431
Revelation was referred to as “a precious” once before, if I recall.

>>25442
I feast upon Anon’s weakness for lolis. Your pity for them only makes me stronger!

>>25444
>I'd be all for apologizing and offering to help if Nat ended up being right, if only because his overly dramatic way of telling us to go fuck ourselves and die (again?) would be pretty awesome. I get the notion that U.N. Owen would get a kick out of writing that scene.
Yes. Yes I would. But I doubt Anon would be able to crawl low enough on the ground to be able to do it.

>Another thing: I would rage so hard if a non-canon NPC was pivotal to the plot. It would be the ultimate troll at this point.
Duly noted. I’ll be sure to make you rage in some other way, then.

Major spoilers!
Nathaniel won’t be saving the day. He won’t even be saving the hour. He might be able to save the minute. Maybe.

>>25446
>>25447
Yeah. Good luck with that.
>> No. 25451
[x] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
Kamikaze.
>> No. 25452
Well let's see today's options...

>[ ] Run. Down the tunnel behind you.
- Wow, Rumia bad end waiting for us?
>[ ] Run. Towards the mansion.
- Getting ourselves shot from behind maybe?
>[ ] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
-...anon really is a lolicon isn't he? Sounds suicidal by the way.
>[ ] Attack?
- >.>
>[ ] Say something?
- We didn't have the balls to say anything when she was calm and we're gonna do it now? Better late than never I guess...
>[ ] Protect Cirno
-Another option were Mr.Farmer gets to show off to a loli?
>[ ] Do nothing
-Yeah, this option has done so much good in the past.

[x] Grab hold of Cirno and run. Towards Flandre, group hug.

[x] Say "We may not be yours but that doesn't mean we don't care about you Flandre."

I'll go with this, at least if we get bad ended we'll get a nice one probably.

But then again, I'm sure someone will come up with some random write-up of doom...

And what was up with the meow thing earlier? Did that really win the vote?
>> No. 25454
>>25451
Ah, wait, just thought of something. If we have enough time to hug Flandre, we should then hot-foot it into the mansion with her in tow. Rising run and all that jazz.

So:
[x] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[x] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.
Kamikaze.
>> No. 25455
File 123187671237.jpg - (491.93KB , 856x772 , 1195155093196.jpg ) [iqdb]
25455
>>25449
>Dawn of
>THE FINAL DAY
FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF
Guess I was in denial when people were talking about this like it was nearing end-game.

>I am unknown!
Unknown was her?

>Fight options
>Run options
These will end well; I just know they will!

>Why was I smart when I was stupid? Why was I an adult when I was a kid? Why was I a woman when I was a girl? The curse…the curse…curse of Vlad Tepes. Wanted to…couldn’t. I tried…failed. Good plan…bad end. Destroy…destroy the fool in me, destroy the curse in me. Destroy the vampire that is within me. Kyuu.
Well there's your problem. Trying to go and destroy a part of yourself on a physical and conceptual level will probably mess you up right proper. All this really does is feed into my theory that Remilia's game is an exercise to try and fix her sister that has since gone awry. Using her ability carelessly messed Flandre up, so the game was devised to hone her abilities to avoid even more damage being done. Its probably long since gotten out of control, with Remilia forgetting why she plays this game and fucks with fate. She knows she's supposed to do it, but she doesn't know why anymore.
Mmmm, Remi conspiracy theories, I missed you so~

Hmm... an insane, enraged, and trigger happy monster about to blow us up. Now is not the time to be rash.
>Flandre
>“Why don’t you love me anymore?”
Oh, my mistake; it's a loli asking about love. Let me just check my common sense at the door.
[X] Walk. Towards Flandre. Say Something.
[X] "I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cure. We know who you are, so at least you have that."
[X] "You also have to get back inside before the sun comes up any more."

Mostly cause this is kinda like the time Adam Bad Ended us, so the approach should be similar: honest and cautious. Caution is thrown to the wind at this point, so at least we can be honest (and throw in onii-chan mode). I'm partial to the kamikaze votes though, but I figure sudden movements will drop us fast. I'd like to spout some lines before we get exploded. Hoping that as his older sister, Flandre can provide a more exquisite Bad End.
>> No. 25456
>[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
Seriously, Anon. Did you even read HY's Why I Assault Moe-Moe Flan-Chan?! You're going to get us all killed.

I'm drawing a blank here. Waiting for a good write-in monologue.
>> No. 25457
File 123187690764.png - (29.39KB , 336x336 , awesome_med.png ) [iqdb]
25457
>why so serious? Let’s put a smile on that face!

Acpf

[x] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[x] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

Meh.
>> No. 25458
[x] Grab hold of Cirno and run. Towards Flandre, group hug.
[x] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

BANZAI

>Dawn of THE FINAL DAY

I thought this was going to continue for another 10 threads and we are nearing game end already?
>> No. 25459
[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[X] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

Of course, if you wanted, you COULD just hold her there and wait for the sunrise. Someone once said they regarded her as a crazed animal that had to be put down, and this would certainly appear to be the prime opportunity.

Not that I think Anon has the balls to try to go through with killing Flandre, but it's still an option.
>> No. 25460
>>25459
Eh, why not? We're already burning through acquaintances like popcorn.
>> No. 25462
My, this is quite a situation. A risk, but it just might work.

[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[X] "I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cure. We know who you are, so at least you have that."
[X] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

I'll also note I'm quite pleased with this segment. Keep it up, Owen.
>> No. 25463
[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[X] "I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cure. We know who you are, so at least you have that."
[X] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

Please note that I am referring every Touhou fan I know to this story. This is truly SDM done right, I look forward to the conclusion with great anticipation.
>> No. 25464
[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[X] "I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cute. We know who you are, so at least you have that."
[X] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

50/50 chance of this going badly.
>> No. 25465
[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[X] "I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cure. We know who you are, so at least you have that."
[X] Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.

>Dawn of THE FINAL DAY

Still deciding what kind of tear I should shed.
>> No. 25466
File 123189231817.jpg - (8.73KB , 200x202 , Moon.jpg ) [iqdb]
25466
>>DAWN OF THE FINAL DAY
>Still deciding what kind of tear I should shed.

Tears of shit. Into your pants.
>> No. 25467
File 123189299319.jpg - (56.90KB , 736x1000 , 123151576668.jpg ) [iqdb]
25467
>>~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>>Dawn of
>>THE FINAL DAY
>>~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>> No. 25468
>>25467
FFFFFFFFFFUCK

Where the hell is my ocarina?
>> No. 25469
[Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.]
["I don't know why; I want to know too. Maybe we can find out together. But please don't say you're nothing, or no one knows you. We know who you are. You're the blond haired girl that lives in basement of that mansion. You like dragons, the piano, and playing games. You've got a chipped tooth but you're still very cure. We know who you are, so at least you have that."]
[Start heading into the mansion to avoid the rising sun with her.]

You’ve only seconds to think before she loses her patience with you. A blur of chaotic questions explode within your mind, incomprehensible to listen to, but somehow, it all works out in your head.

Run? Run where? Back into the cave? You just came from there! Towards the mansion? Then you’re stuck with Nathaniel again! Just flat out run? How could running solve anything? She’s angry with Remilia, and right now, “Remilia” is you; running will only provoke her more.

Fight? Fight with what? Your rifle-bow? You wouldn’t have time to get it into position before she noticed. Your pistol? It’s just a lead bullet; no good against a vampire. The silver knife? It might work, but you’re not betting your life on it. That wand? You could steal it from her, use her own power against—now that’s just stupid! You don’t even know what that wand does!

Do nothing? Doesn’t solve her anger.

Protect Cirno, slide in front of her? You can’t protect her from Flandre, and still doesn’t solve her anger.

Anger. She’s angry. As angry as “Adam” got in Room 101, perhaps even more. How’d you solve that last time; blood? No, a fluke, won’t work twice, too risky. Anger. How to solve anger? Make her un-angry? How to do that…Angry and sad. Sad and lonely. Alone. Abandoned. Unknown. Unloved. “Why don’t you love me…”

Love. She wants love. She needs love. You’re not Remilia in the flesh, but right now you’re Remilia in Flandre’s eyes. You can give her love in place of someone else. Such a lost little girl, a broken little girl, an unknown little girl…You can’t fight great devils like Nathaniel, but you can give a lonely girl a hug to cheer her up.

Tossing your battle knife aside, you throw all your fear away and run towards Flandre, even as she moves to point her wand at you. Not fast enough. Without a moment to lose you wrap your bloodied arms around this small girl, wishing to whatever powers can hear you to replace the chaos in her heart with the caring in yours. She doesn’t push you away immediately like you might have feared four seconds ago, and you let the hug continue for just a few moments longer before beginning to speak.

“I…I don’t know why,” you whisper in her ear, the emotion welling up inside you almost making you forget that you’re not Remilia as you say this. “I don’t know, but I want to. I want to know—“

“No, NO!!”

Suddenly you’re sprawled out on the ground ten meters away, the stinging imprints of Flandre’s push still burning on your chest. She’s crying, crying and shaking her head in disbelief. Tears of sadness. Tears of pain. Tears of rage.

“YOU DON’T KNOW?!?! You, you have to know! W-Why, why don’t you know why you don’t love me?! Why don’t you care?!”

You hold up your hands pleadingly, showing her that you’re at her mercy, that you mean her know harm. “Flandre! Flandre, please! I care! I know you, I know who you are! Please, please don’t say you’re nobody! You’re not unknown! You’re the golden-haired sister who lives in the basement! You like dragons, the piano, and playing all sorts of games! You’ve got—“

“LIAR!!” She’s crouched so low to the ground that she couldn’t possibly get any lower unless she was outright kneeling; perhaps she is kneeling, just on the air itself. Her wand drops onto the ground as she clenches both fists to her side so hard her palms begin to bleed. “LIAR! You never visit! You never talk! You’ve never heard me play! You don’t even know I have a brother, do you?! You don’t care about him! You don’t care about me! All you’ve ever cared about is Grandpa, and he doesn’t even exist! You’re just, just…just…”

She drops to the ground, shaking and sobbing without tears, her golden hair streaming down her face like a wedding veil. You don’t dare move. You don’t dare speak. She’s at the breaking point. Any push, any iota of imbalance, and—

“You’re just another little Indian.”

She stands up, back hunched low like a beast, her face obscured by the lank blonde hair. She raises her right hand, stained with her own blood, and holds up two fingers. A song is sung from her lips, the words unfamiliar, the tune pleasant, and the voice the voice of Death.

”Two little Indians, playing in the sun…”

She raises her head just high enough for you to see an eye. It is an eye born from Hell itself, wrought from the fires of Satan’s forge and placed into the head of this charming little girl.

”One got all frizzled up, and then there was one…”

As she lowers a finger, Cirno disappears from beside you. No blood…No scream…A fine mist of red, white, and blue falls upon the garden, sparkling in the morning light. You inadvertently inhale sharply…You inhale the mist, the mist that was once Cirno, that was once your “bestest friend”. You cough it out, but the taste remains…the memory remains, this past far more real than the present even will be again. Flandre lurches closer to you, her footsteps not at all syncing with her forwards movement.

”One little Indian, he was all alone…”

Her hands latch onto yours; hands of steel, steel from the abyss. She raises you up above her head…high above, ascending into the air so that your body casts a shadow upon her, shielding her from the sun. She forces your own hands around your windpipe, raising your shoulders up over your head. Higher, higher, higher…A gruesome pop that you feel far more than you hear tells you that Flandre just dislocated both your shoulders to bring your forearms directly behind your head, creating a makeshift noose from your arms.

”He went and hung himself…”

Against your will she tightens the grip of your hands around your throat, mixing the pain of choking with the pain in your shoulders, the pain of instantly losing Cirno, of losing Nathaniel, of losing everything…Your breathing turns from a shallow rhythm into a ragged gasping, then a wheezing, then a trickle, then a nonentity as your fingers encircle the flesh of your neck like a vice, crushing you, killing you. Your vision blurs and darkens, seeing only Flandre…only Flandre. Her face shows no pity, no sadness, no loneliness, no pain, no fear…no regret.

”And then there were none.”


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Now weary traveler, rest your head,
For unlike me, you’re utterly dead.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

>> No. 25471
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven… a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build…

But it is not yet time for you.


========================================

“Tepes” shatters into a billion grey pebbles, pelting you and Cirno with a vicious spray of painful, rocky hail. Before you can get your hand up to shield yourself a wayward fragment pelts you in your dead eye socket, immediately blinding you with agony and forcing you to the ground, your good eye crying from the pain. Cirno drops down next to you, though in identical pain or just moral support, you can’t tell. Above you Flandre begins indiscriminately reducing anything she can focus on to powder.

“This! This isn’t mine! You aren’t mine! And you aren’t mine! None of it’s mine! It’s all hers, all hers! I have nothing! I am nothing! I am no one! I am unknown!”

All around you the flowers and greens are nothing but soft, multicolored ash drifting in the morning light. Flandre’s wand shimmers with energy, seemingly vibrating and twisting shape of its own accord. She looks at both of you with eyes made of the purest kind of madness you could ever imagine.

“Why don’t you love me anymore?”

[ ] Run. Down the tunnel behind you.
[ ] Run. Towards the mansion.
[ ] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
[ ] Fight. With the pistol.
[ ] Fight. With your silver knife.
[ ] Fight. With her own wand after you snatch it from her hands.
[ ] SAY SOMETHING!! (But what…?)
[ ] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[ ] Do nothing.
[ ] WriteinwriteinwriteinshesgonnakillyouWRITEIN!!

========================================

I’m not even going to try and sugar-coat this one. That was stupid. You were doing so well, too.

>>25452
>...anon really is a lolicon isn't he? Sounds suicidal by the way.
It was. And yet you still voted for it.

>I'll go with this, at least if we get bad ended we'll get a nice one probably.
Define “nice”.

>But then again, I'm sure someone will come up with some random write-up of doom...
They didn’t. They went with the author-given choice of doom instead.

>And what was up with the meow thing earlier? Did that really win the vote?
It’s a trivial matter. The “kitty” analogy was already established in Flandre’s mind; the vote didn’t “win” per-se, I just used it because it didn’t detract from anything.

>>25455
>FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF! Guess I was in denial when people were talking about this like it was nearing end-game.
It can’t last forever, and I don’t want it to. Sometimes even the good things in life must end, so that we make way for even better things.

>Unknown was her?
Don’t look at me; Flandre made me do it!

>Oh, my mistake; it's a loli asking about love. Let me just check my common sense at the door.
I just told you people that I feed upon your pity for lolis. This guy listened to me; the collective “you” did not.

>Hoping that as his older sister, Flandre can provide a more exquisite Bad End.
Little girl was doing her best and is done preparing. Please wait coolly…in a coffin.

>>25460
>Eh, why not? We're already burning through acquaintances like popcorn.
The path to the Dark Side, this is…

>>25462
>I'll also note I'm quite pleased with this segment. Keep it up, Owen.
Flandre insanity makes all segments better!

>>25463
>Please note that I am referring every Touhou fan I know to this story. This is truly SDM done right, I look forward to the conclusion with great anticipation.
I thank you with many thanks. I’ve seen too many instances of Gensokyo done wrong, or only done halfway. I wanted to try and do just a little better than that.

>>25467
I will never sleep soundly again. Ever.

>>25468
You already used it. On Cirno.
>> No. 25472
File 123190264442.png - (560.76KB , 635x470 , LIAR!.png ) [iqdb]
25472
Oh bugger; forgot my picture.
>> No. 25473
MOU IKKAI

[X] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
>> No. 25475
Stupid, yes. But INTERESTING.
Unfortunately, barring a good write-in or option for saying something to her, none of the remaining choices look any less likely to kill us somehow.

Running away in hopes the sun rises fast enough to either kill her or force her to retreat before she can disintegrate us doesn't seem too likely. Combat doesn't seem much better.

There's still two trump cards up our sleeve, but one of them probably won't be of much use, and the other would possibly be better used on someone else.

That just leaves taking some action not accounted for in the current options, or trying to talk her down. Unfortunately, doing that with an insane person is hard enough, but even more so when they're currently under the delusion that you're not only somebody else, but somebody else that they are VERY angry with.

At the moment, I got nothing.
>> No. 25476
File 123190453513.gif - (14.83KB , 650x450 , problemsleuthNOYOUFOOL!!.gif ) [iqdb]
25476
>>25473

This picture is the only emotion I have for you.
>> No. 25477
>There's still two trump cards up our sleeve, but one of them probably won't be of much use, and the other would possibly be better used on someone else.

You mean the two wishes? Fate of the Present might be useful at the moment. (Although it would be amusing to use Fate of the Future and have it either advise you to run or use the other one.)

Other ideas :

[ ] Believe in the heart of the cards, use Fate of Present (Sorta annoying that we use two cards because of her, but we are on the last day. Even so, she may not be the worst thing we have to face. There's probably much more excitement ahead.)

[ ] Run, but in a zig-zag fashion while you order Cirno to get help. She does seem to be after you, rather than turning you into mist like everything else. (That being said, Flan's probably way faster than you.)

[ ] Try to use the new set of glasses on her. (Kinda hard...)

[ ] Distract her. (Maybe use danmaku on something? Would've been nice if we could do it before she was staring straight at us.)

[ ] Have Cirno make a big prismatic ice chunk in the air and try to hit Flandre with a rainbow made from sunlight. (I'm not sure what the heck this would do, but it makes me giggle. I think I'm tired.) (Wait, was I thinking that the crystals somehow represent her mind being fragmented? A rainbow of light stuck back together would get you white. Carebear power? Encase the wings entirely into a white ice crystal? Destroy all the crystals but one?)

[ ] Come to think of it, maybe Cirno can make some ice to refract sunlight down on Flan. (~physics!~)
>> No. 25478
>[ ] Run. Down the tunnel behind you.
Leads to Insane Adam, insane Faries, possibly EX-Rumia. Death.
>[ ] Run. Towards the mansion.
The door will be locked, or we won’t make it. Death.
>[ ] Run. Towards Flandre. Hug her.
Death.
>[ ] Fight. With the pistol.
Death
>[ ] Fight. With your silver knife.
Death
>[ ] Fight. With her own wand after you snatch it from her hands.
Stupid Death
>[ ] SAY SOMETHING!! (But what…?)
She’s insane. Anything we say will be filtered to an insult with her in this mental state. Death.
>[ ] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
Any hope that we can just try to hold on and wait for someone to come has been dashed by Nate playing hero. Remilia and Sakuya are going to be occupied. Death.
>[ ] Do nothing.
Apathy brings death.
>[ ] WriteinwriteinwriteinshesgonnakillyouWRITEIN!!
...I’ve got nothing

Guess I’ll have to try and think about this one for a while.
>> No. 25479
Wait, of course it is fragmentation. In the very thread itself. And more interesting when the previous description is re-read. Would the wings survive contact with sunlight then?
>> No. 25480
File 12319078058.jpg - (421.75KB , 700x1044 , 2125685.jpg ) [iqdb]
25480
>>25471
>I’m not even going to try and sugar-coat this one. That was stupid. You were doing so well, too.
Oh come now. You've taken such pains to instill in us the extent of Flandre's madness and magnitude of her abilities that it is almost impossible to divine an appropriate response in such a situation outside of guessing or relying on meta information. Anon knows Flandre is Remi's sister, but Flandre just spouted a stream of conciousness that indicates she is not. Will we recall the fact that Patchu mentioned Remi having a sister in a moment where a split second decision needs to be made? We can try to roleplay as Remilia to talk Flan down, but to me it doesn't make sense for farmer to have made that leap of logic. Don't be surprised if you're forced to write another Bad End before we get this right~

You ha... uh... you have to... to... ta, um.... TAKE RESPONSIBILITY!

But it was a glorious Bad End indeed. Truly worthy of the youngest Scarlet. Remilia has some big shoes to fill after this.

I'll take a stab at another vote after a shower. Good ideas and showers go together hand-in-hand.
>> No. 25481
>>25478
I'm with you. Every option seems bad. We're going to have to think of something real good to get out of this one. As a rather random thought, my previous comment on Ran as a possible ally made me think. Remember the latin conversation.

>She asked me, ‘What help do you need?’ The answer I gave her was, ‘Only the slave will free the slave. Please, I beg of you. Watch, but do not yet act.’

This means Ran may be watching. Johnthaniel may have told her not to act, but we are not him. If we called for help, would she answer with Yukari life-hax? Probably not. This is just a shot in the dark and has no real probable value, after all. But I'm sure the idea would catch U.N. Owen off-guard, and he enjoys that. How much does asking for help take? Just three seconds to yell out to no one in particular.

[X] In vague hope of some kind of help from the gods, say aloud, "If anyone's watching, please, help!" in a desperate tone.
[X] Other option that has yet to be decided
>> No. 25482
More :

[ ] Scry into Flandre's head. (Yeah, it might make her a bit messed up - which in this case would be a BIG HUGE IMPROVEMENT.)

[ ] Reverse Scry, so she can see what she looks like. (Like the above, except not only it's not tested, but we don't know enough to figure out if it's theortically possible.)
>> No. 25483
>As she lowers a finger, Cirno disappears from beside you. No blood…No scream…A fine mist of red, white, and blue falls upon the garden, sparkling in the morning light.

Good going Anon. I leave for a day to play P4 and Cirno gets reduced to a fine red mist.

BY THE WAY, ADACHI IS in love with cabbages.
>> No. 25486
[ ] Scream like a little girl

no

>You’re not Remilia in the flesh, but right now you’re Remilia in Flandre’s eyes

That has to be good for something.

[x] Be Remilia, yell at her for being a bad girl and order her to stop and to behave.
or if that doesn't work
[x] Promise her to let her out of the basement if she behaves. And to treat her better.

Something like that. Do everything possible that will make her calm down. Once she thinks clear again we can talk a bit sense into her.

How long until it's over? You must have written quite a bit already.
>> No. 25491
Crap. All the options seem bad. The only thing I can think of is using our third wish on Flandre.

>Third Wish, 「Fate of the Present」.
>“The magic of ages still at hand, torn out of time and given as a gift. The soul wishes to advance to days of now, troubled times with many emotions. Present this card to the heavens with a purpose, and the magic shall flow upon you. Fate, which even now is being set in stone, shall unravel beside you, giving what all desire, but few receive: the power to change a life. Worry much about what you will change, for this has not been preordained by the fate you make for yourself. Worry still about what will happen once you do.”

It looks like it would fit the situation.
>> No. 25492
Ugh, I'm away for a day and you guys get Cirno misted. What the hell.

I'm going to be gone for a week... I can only imagine what else anon will manage. I'm dreading coming back to find two new threads composed purely of bad-ends.

To be completely fair, while the choice taken was indeed completely retarded, everything here just screams potential bad end. I'd say save your cards for Remelia or Sakuya... but jesus christ Cirno mist! Just use one of the fucking cards already. But other than that, I have no clue.

Good luck, godspeed, and pray for an epic write-in (I think this or a card are your only actual chances here).
>> No. 25493
[x] "You're being a bad girl Flan! A very bad girl! How dare you talk about your brother that way! What does it matter if he wasn't your birth brother? He loves you and wants for nothing besides your happiness! Even when Adam is not Adam--as Glish--he wanted to stay by your side and help you in spite of all the cruel things you've done to him."
[x] "Why don't I love you? Why don't I play with you? Because it's heartbreaking to see you like this; I can't bear it! Look at what you do with your playmates and toys!"
[x] "You think I keep you here because it makes me happy? I bring guests across space and time just to hear tales of places and peoples I'll never see because I am stuck here watching over you, making sure you don't raze the world in a fit of insanity! I'm trying my best to be the adult I'll never look like, and while I can't make understand me or make you forgive me or make you think of me as a real sister, it doesn't even matter because I don't need your love: All that matters is that I love you, unconditionally. How could it be not? You're my sister, even if I'm not yours."
[x] Whatever her response is, harden your heart and walk away, back inside the mansion.
>> No. 25494
[x] Spit at her
[x] Spin 360
[x] Moonwalk back into the mansion
>> No. 25495
>>25491

I thought we were supposed to usa that on Remilia. If Nathaniel's words are true and Remilia is indeed evil, I figured the card would be the only way to change her.

But hey, Flandre is messed up enought to be a candidate.
>> No. 25497
>>25495

Tewi? What are you doing in /sdm/?
>> No. 25499
>>25252
>I’m sure that Rumia would be quite humanize-able if an author tried;
You should hear about the ideas for the Rumia route of the VN.

>>25260
>-_-;;
We do not tolerate faggotry of this sort. Please refrain from further use of it.
>> No. 25500
File 123203847168.jpg - (357.46KB , 919x545 , 1212587973271.jpg ) [iqdb]
25500
>>25471
While the site was suspended I wrote a wall justifying my write-in.

Let's go to the replay:
>“I…I don’t know why,” you whisper in her ear, the emotion welling up inside you almost making you forget that you’re not Remilia as you say this. “I don’t know, but I want to. I want to know—“
>“No, NO!!”
>Suddenly you’re sprawled out on the ground ten meters away, the stinging imprints of Flandre’s push still burning on your chest. She’s crying, crying and shaking her head in disbelief. Tears of sadness. Tears of pain. Tears of rage.
>“YOU DON’T KNOW?!?! You, you have to know! W-Why, why don’t you know why you don’t love me?! Why don’t you care?!”

What can we learn from this?
First of all, proximity is dangerous; as much as it pains me, hug time can probably wait.
Second, for better or for worse, Flandre sees us as her big sister right now. Trying to behave in a less than desirable manner without clarifying we weren't Remi didn't end well. What we didn't try is telling Flandre we aren't her sister. Worked well enough for Cirno. This opens up two distinct options: speak like we're Remilia and try to talk Flandre down, or tell her we're not her sister flat out.
Third, Flandre can end this conversation very fast and very decidedly. Running away isn't probably going to work: we'd get kyuu'd for not answering her. Fighting may work, since we managed to close the gap and hug her. Possible to do the same but bury the knife or crossbow bolt in her back instead of trying to console her. May incapacitate her and let us run away, but I really don't think anything good could come from that, especially in the long term when/if we confront Remilia or Glish later. Absent using a fate card, I think we need to make an epic speech check.
Finally, unabashed compassion has its time and place, and it's not here. We're 0 for 2 on this so it is a proven method to get killed. Sucks anon can't be anon, but oh well... maybe we can save it for Remi? While I don't think the story would be complete without Remilia's take on killing farmer, I get the impression that her end is going to be a little more permanent. Sucks that we're pretty much fated to get killed by her: two of the three Scarlets have already Bad Ended us, so it's probably inevitable.

So, time to do what we always do: what has worked and what hasn't? Looking at the existing options, only a few make even a remote amount of sense. First and foremost, protect Cirno. This is a no-brainer: get in front of her, draw Flandre's attention away, whatever. It's a simple move we can execute while we try to defuse the situation (HA!).
That said, while it's a bit tenuous, it's not too hard for farmer to comprehend that we're Remilia in Flandre's eyes right now. We can handle this two ways: answer like Remilia or tell her we're not her sister. Both have positives and negatives. On the one hand Remilia is very important in Flan's life and commands a lot of authority. However, she is mad with rage against her sister and all of that will be brought to bear on you. Not that it already isn't, but acknowledging you're Remilia will open the flood gates for better or for worse. On the other, Glish's warning way back when told us to only answer Flandre when you know what she's asking. By telling her we're not someone that can answer that question is the responsible answer. However, the Bad End demonstrates that breaking Flan's delusion results in extreme yoga and fairy dust.

I'm inclined to answer as Remilia. Normally, taking advantage of someone's disability leaves a bad taste in my mouth, but considering the nature of Flandre's prior actions, we need to take every opportunity presented. Doing any less is just as irresponsible as it is incompetent. I'm also willing to explore this option since not acting within her expectations seemed to instantly set her off. That established, she has posed a question to us, so how do we answer in such a way that doesn't get a repeat?

First, we can tell her that she's wrong and we do love her. Intuitive answer for anon, but directly conflicts her observations. We can tell her because she's been a bad girl. Mean, yes, but it's a reasonable answer that doesn't conflict with her rant. Could reduce Flandre to tears and disarm the situation, could set her off. Third option is a little out there: take the blame. Tell Flandre it's not her fault, admit to being a bad sister, apologize, ask for forgiveness, tell her she doesn't have to be sad anymore because love is here (it has never been so clear; you can't love what you have not; so hold on to what you've got), etc. Admitting being the one at fault is pretty much a free pass to let her do anything she wants to us, and that is probably bad considering how angry she is. However, its effectiveness is maximized by her perception of us, we've got some sound notions of the depth of Remilia's cruelty (this is me trusting you on this, Nathaniel. Time to prove us wrong), we've seen the conditions Flandre lives with and what she has done, and we know Flandre wants her sister. It's also probably closest to the truth and may very well be the first step in resolving some issues in the mansion.

To me, all three are equally valid since the outcome simply can't be predicted. It's fun working with crazy people, right? Anyway, going with door number three: apologize to Flandre for Remilia.

[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."

Gah, I can't write schmaltz worth a damn, but I think it conveys the idea. We acknowledge her ("I am nothing! I am no one! I am unknown!"), give her her sister back ("None of it’s mine! It’s all hers, all hers! I have nothing!"), and disarms her (I think) since she's expecting us to blame her. Last bit is also ludicrously presumptuous since I think we got ourselves locked out of any kind of a Good End a while back, but anon can still dream. While I like this course of action, this will probably be interpreted as "anon <3 lolis" and is doomed to failure: how much can farmer get out before he's kyuu'd? Ah well, it was a good intellectual exercise.

A reasonable, albeit more vicious alternative would be to do as outlined above: pretend to hug her, stall with lies, and then stab her in the back instead. She probably won't die from something like that, but it could give us the time to run away and it may stun her long enough for the sun to weaken or finish her off. I won't discount this course of action as having a bit more predictability in outcome; short term gain, long term loss.

tl;dr - pretend to be Remilia and apologize to Flandre for being a bad sister (or pretend to hug her and bury your knife in her back)
>> No. 25501
File 123203858150.gif - (480.73KB , 320x240 , 1192051007025.gif ) [iqdb]
25501
>>25154
> >.>

>>25234
>We can't really give her a sample, she might come back for more if we happen to be really tasty >.>

>>25303
>Thanks a lot all of you who voted to wait it out >< because of you Rumi's dead now!!!!

>>25331
>This is usually the part where I'd go save and heal up before preparing to go into another boss battle >.>

Get out and never return unless you have the fucking decency to learn the local customs.
>> No. 25504
File 123204875839.jpg - (632.04KB , 2160x1500 , scarlet_and_scarlet_01.jpg ) [iqdb]
25504
I will just leave this here...
>> No. 25505
[x] CLENCH THOSE TEETH FLANDRE
>> No. 25506
>>25501
First of all, I don't see any rule against it and second of all like anybody effing cares besides you. As long as it isn't swamped by our little typed in friends then you should just fuck off.

>>25471
I knew it was suicidal...but I really did figure someone would come up with a better thing to say or do than myself. I mean, who the heck would take anything with the words "group hug" seriously?!

My bad though, forgot how much we lean towards the loli side of choices in general...

[x] Do nothing

And I'm serious about trying this one, let's let Flandre go about her tantrum and hopefully the sun will knock some sense into her (not like she'll die right away anyhow so we can't count on that).

Hell, this might even be a trick question from our writer who so far has punished us quite a bit for not going with the flow and being overly cautious.

Although I was tempted to maybe just fling the silver knife at her and then high tail it out of there while she recovers from the blow...silver is pretty effective against most mystical critters.
>> No. 25507
>>25506
>First of all, I don't see any rule against it and second of all like anybody effing cares besides you.

I care.
>> No. 25508
>>25506
>>25507
As do I. Remember that the majority of anons here are long time 4chan visitors, myself included.

There are few acceptable emoticons and some even with rules, like ;_; is only acceptable when talking of Sacchin or life like textures.
>> No. 25510
>>25508

Life like textures?
>> No. 25511
>>25510

;_;
>> No. 25512
>anybody effing cares besides you.
>effing
Were you a tripfag, I could tolerate this as another obnoxious quirk. Seeing as you aren't, I'm mildly annoyed by you.
Listening to >>25501
is actually a pretty good idea for now. The way you post right now would cause most threads you post in to devolve into useless flaming. This is not something the writers want, this is not something most posters want, and I doubt this is something you want.

As an aside, 'ಠ_ಠ' is tolerated in most situations where the face is appropriate.
>> No. 25513
[ ] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.

Our only path.
>> No. 25514
>[ ] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
I'm actually a bit wary of this. Flandre is pissed as fuck at us at the moment, so if we move to protect Cirno it may indicate to her that Cirno's important to us, thus leading to a repeat of the fine mist scenario.

Fucking hell, my paranoia is maximum.
>> No. 25515
I just had an idea.
Clearly running to or from her won't work, attacking would be suicidal, and talking her down doesn't seem too likely.

But who says we have to calm her down?
What if, rather than attempting to remove her anger, we instead tried to redirect it?
>> No. 25516
>>25506
listen to >>25501 and >>25508

I don't want to sage Owen's Thread.
>> No. 25517
[x] "Because you blow up all my stuff."
>> No. 25518
[x] "What do you want me to say? Do you want to lie and comfort you; tell you that your sister is capable of loving even herself, let alone another person? Maybe you'd rather just vaporize me as a cathartic way of dealing with your hatred? Or maybe we can just cut past sturm und drang, and I'll tell you the same thing I told that last madman: Dawn is breaking; you're free and there's an entire world out there to explore. Don't tell me you can't go out because of the sun, I know you're a hell of a lot stronger than that!"
[x] "On your back, the phylact-whatevers? To me they can only be wings, a symbol of freedom since time immemorial. Have you spent so long in your cage that you've forgotten how to use them?"
[x] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[x] "I have promises to keep, someone I want to protect, and it is a path I follow freely, but just as easily, I could have bolted at the earliest opportunity to continue my wanderings, and it's the same for you: It's up to you to decide your path; whether to fly out and see the world you've always wanted to see, or if there is something you consider worth saving here, stay and protect it."
[x] "But whatever your choice is, you best make it quick. Sakuya's and Nathaniel's plots near completion and whatever it is spells ill for the residents of this place."

Simply hiding Cirno by focusing her attention on yourself is a way of protecting her. Not that she needs line of sight to use her ability, but Flandre is distractable.
>> No. 25519
>>25516

*sigh* Fine.

I honestly don't use smilies for the fact that they are "cute" or anything similar, I mostly use them because they attenuate the rather cold tone that most people get when online. It's easy to misunderstand intentions without them.

Well whatever, I agreed to stop using them here so that's that.
>> No. 25520
[X] Run. Towards the mansion.

They've escaped into the mansion where they thought it was safe, and yet...
>> No. 25521
>>25519
Different anon from the other ones. Just do it, I don't give a shit. It's just text emotes.
>> No. 25528
Just to let you know: The reason I’m not writing is, of course, because I can see that you’ve haven’t reached any sort of semblance of a consensus. I very much doubt you want me to just take a handful of shaky, undecided votes and spit another Bad End back at you, and I don’t want to either. I’m still watching over the story, but until I see some majority move towards a decision, I won’t be writing. If you want the story to continue, I suggest you pluck up some courage, pick a vote that seems to work for you, and hope for the best. And if you get another Bad End, then at least you know where you stand.

And by the way, if you do get another Bad End here, I’ll most likely give you a new set of voting options; not that they’re guaranteed to be any better than the ones you have now.

====================

>>25480
I’ll give you that, good sir; I don’t deny that this is a difficult option to decide considering Flandre’s insanity. Perhaps I was being a bit harsh with my commentary, but at the time I was just rather annoyed that everyone simply decided to “follow the herd” with the hugging vote. Then again, I’ll agree it looked like it had a marginal chance of success at the time, so perhaps you should get the benefit of the doubt.

And thank you for enjoying the Bad End; I liked it too. But who said Remilia’s going to be killing you?

>>25481
>But I'm sure the idea would catch U.N. Owen off-guard, and he enjoys that.
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I don’t exactly like it when you do unexpected things, especially with something like kicking Nathaniel off the island, considering it might mess up the plot I’m planning. However, when the votes swing in a weird way, it proves once again that you are the real ones you control the story, and after all, isn’t that what we’re going for here?

But yes, it’s fun to see you guys really thinking out of the box.

>>25486
>How long until it's over? You must have written quite a bit already.
That even I don’t know. All I know is that this game day will be the last game day, simply because events are going to start happening that will inevitably draw the conflict to a close, whether for good, bad, or something else. Depending on how you vote, there could still be threads and threads left of segments for me to write.

>>25492
>I'm dreading coming back to find two new threads composed purely of bad-ends.
I’m dreading that you’ll come back to this thread being full of people still stuck on deciding what to choose. It would be rather interesting if the longest delay this story has had was not because I was lazy, nor because people aren’t reading, but because no one can figure out what to vote for.

>>25494
You’d be better off with the MC Hammerslide here, in my opinion.

>>25499
>You should hear about the ideas for the Rumia route of the VN.
Perhaps I should. Maybe I’ll bring it up in IRC one day, if I remember.

>>25500
This smart person knows how to cope with site downtime! Excellent analysis here; perhaps this will be the spark that lights the flame of people’s voting courage?

>>25504
Hmmm…Interesting.

>>25501 & >>25506 & >>25507 & >>25508
>>25512 & >>25516 & >>25519 & >>25521
To both parties concerned: you should know that “Anon” is prone to flying off the handle with relative, and perhaps even random, ease. If you have a complaint, don’t negatively antagonize someone to make it known, because then it will inevitably degrade into trolling/flaming/RAGEing, and then it makes pretty much everyone unhappy. Make your grievance known, but then back off. And if you’re being complained at, likewise don’t return rage for rage, else an entire thread with devolve into a shouting match, and most people probably don’t want that.

If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. And if you’ve already said something not nice, please don’t continue to do so.
>> No. 25532
>>25528
>Hmmm…Interesting.

It is, isn't? I expected someone would see what I wanted to do there, but it appears that anon is too busy with text emotes. C'mon guys, it's not like you don't have it, this is one of the best doujins so far.

>>25518

I think that's just going for another BAD END.
>> No. 25533
>>[] Fight. With your silver knife.
I just thought that if Flandre could take it off our person and put it onto a table, then it's not as good a repellent against vampires as I've read.

[x] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
Priorities.
>> No. 25534
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.

Fuck it, I'll try this.
>> No. 25535
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."

Oh, why the hell not? The reasoning seems sound, and if there's any way to actually make the fact that Flandre thinks you're Remilia at the moment work in your favor, you may as well try to capitalize on it.
>> No. 25537
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."

The wall has convinced me.
>> No. 25538
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."
>> No. 25539
>>25532

...too busy with text emotes? Stop bringing that back up.

Here's your doujin you ungrateful bastard.

ttp://gallery.gensokyo.org/albums/mirror/Aozora-Market_-_Scarlet_and_Scarlet.zip

On another note, was it this hectic the last time you guys got a bad end? I didn't really bother reading the votes to the posts I hadn't been around for.
>> No. 25540
Not really hectic, although there were quite a few votes. Then again, all we had to do was NOT free the crazy vamp thing.
>> No. 25541
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."
>> No. 25542
>>25539

You did not see what I did. I don't want the doujin, I HAVE the doujin. What I wanted you to do was to read it.

[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."

Now voting for something somewhat decent, that has a better chance of saving our necks.
>> No. 25543
[X] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[X] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[X] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."
>> No. 25544
THIS SHIT WILL NEVER WORK
>> No. 25545
>>25544
And what would the peanut gallery recommend?
>> No. 25546
inb4/dead/
>> No. 25547
[x] Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.
[x] Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."
[x] "You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."
>> No. 25548
>>25545
The Chardonnay.
>> No. 25549
[Get in front of Cirno. Protect her.]
[Summon up as much authority and calm as possible: "Flandre." Wait for her attention then soften tone: "I'm sorry. I didn't love you like I should have as your sister. You didn't do anything wrong: I failed you, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please don't hate me. I want to show you the love you deserve."]
["You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon."]

You’ve only seconds to think before she loses her patience with you. A blur of chaotic questions explode within your mind, incomprehensible to listen to, but somehow, it all works out in your head.

Run? Run where? Back into the cave? You just came from there! Towards the mansion? Then you’re stuck with Nathaniel again! Just flat out run? How could running solve anything? She’s angry with Remilia, and right now, “Remilia” is you; running will only provoke her more.

Fight? Fight with what? Your rifle-bow? You wouldn’t have time to get it into position before she noticed. Your pistol? It’s just a lead bullet; no good against a vampire. The silver knife? It might work, but you’re not betting your life on it. That wand? You could steal it from her, use her own power against—now that’s just stupid! You don’t even know what that wand does!

Do nothing? Doesn’t solve her anger. Protect Cirno, slide in front of her? It wouldn’t make any difference; with a snap of her fingers you’re nothing but a pile of dust anyways. Nothing works…any logical action you try to do will just be met by her insanity, followed shortly by a simple “kyuu.” And yet…that’s why you need to protect Cirno anyways.

Any “logical” action is useless…but Flandre isn’t “logical”, and thus, anything you do with her can’t be done “logically”. But at the same time, there’s a certain method to her madness, and through her powers may be invincible, her mind is not. Shielding Cirno from Flandre’s wrath doesn’t “logically” do anything, but it sends a message, a message that says you’re willing to sacrifice yourself in place of her; that you want to take the blame. Cirno…She hasn’t done anything wrong here; probably hasn’t done much of anything wrong your entire time in the mansion. She’s been kind, caring, strong-willed, understanding…Between the two of you, you’re the one who should be punished, not her. Granted, you really don’t think you deserve this either, but still…

Wait…blame. That’s it. Flandre is blaming Remilia for forgetting her, for abandoning her, for not caring. Whether or not these accusations are true, Flandre won’t calm down until this blame is addressed. No matter what you do—running, fighting, cowering, perhaps even consoling—it would be a futile action unless you deal with the heart of the problem. But how to do that? You don’t know the first thing about the relationship between Remilia and her sister. For that matter, Remilia hasn’t even mentioned that she has a sister to your knowledge. Even if you answer as Remilia, what can you say that would have any effect? How can you pretend to be a person if you don’t even know who that person really is? And what about her personality; what if you don’t act like Remilia would? Or what if Flandre see through you and blasts you away because you’re impersonating her “Big Sister”? It’s all going to go wrong…It’s all going to fail…You’re going to die no matter what…

A tiny voice inside your head—your conscience?—meekly whispers the same three words to you, over and over, ever since Flandre asked you the question. “Say you’re sorry…say you’re sorry…say you’re sorry…” You’ve dismissed it up until now, but the more you think about your horrible predicament, the more you listen. Say you’re sorry…apologize…admit that you’re wrong. Even you know that Remilia wouldn’t do that: never says please, probably never say thank you, always thinks she’s the queen of the world even if she acts civil. She’d never admit to a fault, because that would mean someone else was above her in some small way. But…that might be the reason. The reason Flandre is so angry: because Remilia never admits that she’s done anything wrong, even when perhaps she has. She will never apologize…

…so you’re going to apologize for her.

You know you’re going to die, but anything else will only make your death more meaningless. You move your body in between Flandre and Cirno, slowly yet surely, so as not to make any sudden movements. She’s a wild beast…Anything sudden or surprising will be met with hostility. There is no courage or calm within your body, but you somehow manage to find some despite the fact. You don’t look Flandre in the eye—not yet…can’t be direct—and merely look down low to the ground. It’s not hard to begin with a tone of desperation and fear, because that’s all you’re made of right now.

“I’m sorry!”

You hear nothing from Flandre, and without anything to see, you can only continue this wild gambit of a plan blindly.

“Flandre, I’m…I’m sorry.”

You can hear the clatter of a metal object being dropped onto the ground; her wand, perhaps? “You—You’re sorry?” Flandre’s voice maintains is cold rage, but there’s confusion in it as well, now. “You’ve…You…you’re never sorry. Never.”

You don’t look up. You don’t dare. Despite all intentions of looking and acting resolute, all you can do is slowly curl into a crouched ball, you hands over you head in fear. “It’s my fault, it’s all my fault,” you say, hoping to high heavens that Flandre doesn’t call your bluff, and fearing every millisecond that she will. “It was never your fault; you didn’t do anything wrong. I’m sorry…I didn't love you like I should have as a sister. I should have…should have cared about you, shouldn’t have forgotten you…but I did, and I’m so sorry.”

You can hear footsteps coming near you, and you muster up enough courage to crack open your eye and watch as Flandre’s dirty shoes tap closer and closer to you. You think you can hear her crying.

“…Why? WHY?! Why’d you forget about me?!” she yells, in both contempt and sorrow. “I was always right here, right here, and you forgot me! You never visited! You never talked! You’ve never heard me play the piano! You don’t even know I have a brother, do you?! Why’d you stop caring?!

No, not this! You don’t know why Remilia forgot! What are you supposed to say? Lie? Make some half-truth up? Keep apologizing? Bow down on the ground and beg for forgiveness? Anything, anything you say here could be misconstrued, and in Flandre’s world, misunderstandings cause death. Please…someone…someone help!

“I never did. I just forgot that I did.”

You turn around towards the voice; Cirno?! She’s standing above you, looking Flandre straight in the eye. You can see that she’s afraid, and yet…she’s fighting for you, protecting you, as you protected her.

“We’re sisters, even if we don’t always want to be,” she says emotionally, twirling her torn skirt nervously. “It doesn’t matter what happens, sisters always love each other, no matter what. I just…forgot that, for a really long time. I was too busy; taking care of the mansion, meeting everyone in Gensokyo…chasing around that stupid Cirno…Sometimes I forget that I even have a sister. But I’m remembering now, no matter how many times I forgot before.”

Flandre’s shaking her head in confusion, a wayward tear from her eyes hitting you in the cheek. “But…no, but…you never…why did…it doesn’t…we always…”

(Ehh…)
>> No. 25550
(…I got nothin’.)

You pick up where Cirno left off. “I failed you, Flandre. I don’t want to lie to you anymore: I’ve been a horrible sister, and I can't begin to apologize enough. Forgive me, Flandre, and please, please don't hate me. I made a mistake, but I want to make it up. I want to show you the love that you deserve, that I’ve forgotten to give you all these years."

Flandre falls to her knees in front of you, weeping horribly into her hands. Her yellow crystals are so bright that it’s blinding to look this close to them. She continues to yell at Remilia, but it seems she’s lost the will to fight any more.

“I…I hate you! I want to hate you, but…but I still love you, too! I don’t care, but I should, but I want to! Why can’t…Can’t I, can’t we just be together? Why do we always have to be like this?”

You nearly put a hand on her shoulder before realizing that you’d probably like to keep that hand for the time being. You’re much more level-headed now, much more calm. You passed. You passed this small challenge with your life intact, and perhaps might have finally started the events which might bring the two Scarlets back together and solve this mansion mystery once and for all.

“Shhh, shhh, it’s all right,” you console, wishing that you could hug her or wipe her tears away. “You don't have to cry anymore, Flandre. Things will be changing here for the better soon…I promise.”

You don’t really notice that fact that you don’t know how things will be changing. You don’t really notice that fact that Remilia herself might not be so caring when the time comes. You don’t really notice the cool feeling on your nose and ears as you look at the rising sun. You don’t really notice the blood drenched on your clothes and hair. You don’t really notice the pain in your eye socket.

But you certainly notice the instant that time stands still.

It’s been ages, it seems, since you last experienced the crippling shackles of seeing without moving, without feeling. Nathaniel, for once, was true to his word: these new glasses are perfectly clear in both lenses (well, the lens that you can see through…), and you can hear a faint rustling in the distance. The halt of time…has Nathaniel finally begun his final battle against Remila? Or is it—

“Tccsh, what do we have here?”

Sakuya’s voice rings loud and clear in your ears, the annoyance in her voice almost masking the surprise. You can’t see her, but she’s definitely here. But why? And why now, of all times?

“What I wouldn’t give to know what you children were just talking about,” she muses to herself. “But, as the Mistress commands. You’re needed elsewhere, farmboy.” With an unfelt tug you find yourself being dragged backwards against your will, the sensation of moving without feeling a thing quite maddening. Suddenly you stop, and part of the maid’s face appears in your vision. She frowns a little bit as she looks at you.

“Somehow found yourself another pair, did you? Well we can’t have that.” A hand reaches across your face and your vision warps uncomfortably; you’d feel sick to your stomach if you could feel anything right now—

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“Please remain calm, sir. I hope this is not too unsettling for you.”

Wait, where…where are you? You look around; the mansion’s kitchen? Sakuya stands in front of you, her hands folded professionally in front of her apron. How did you get here?

“What…just happened?” you ask, your mind still relatively rattled from the sudden progression of events.

“Ahh, yes. I apologize again for your rather unconventional treatment. It seems as though you were wandering around the mansion basement, quite unaware of yourself, sir. You seemed to be under the delusion that you were trapped within black caverns and that your life was in grave danger. I managed to bring you back up here as you slept. I hope I did not offend your privacy, but you did not appear to be in your right mind, and I feared that you might harm yourself more than you already had.”

You don’t understand. Cirno, Flandre, Rumia, Nathaniel…you were just talking to Flandre; she thought you were Remilia. Sakuya stopped time, and then…a dream? Was this all a dream? A mad delusion, all thought up within your head? You look yourself over frantically: same clothes as when you woke up, but no blood, though your pants are a little scuffed up. Clean gauze is wrapped over your missing eye and around several portions of your legs and arms; all of them sting, but it feels more like a medicinal sting now. Pockets…what do you have in your pockets? Nothing…nothing save for those two cards of “Fate” and the mansion key.

“Where’s…where’s my things? Cirno, Nathaniel...what’s going on?”

She motions for you to calm down, and seats you down in one of the chairs. “Please try and calm yourself, sir. I brought you up from the basement as I found you; you had nothing else on your person except two strange cards, the key I gave to you, and the clothes on your back. Cirno is currently resting in the servant’s quarters for the time being. Mr. Nathaniel is meeting with Mistress Remilia over breakfast, and she has asked that they not be disturbed for any reason. When I informed her of your condition, she instructed me to keep you here in the kitchen and clean you up; she will be seeing you once she is satisfied with Mr. Nathaniel.”

This…this makes no sense! You were there! You were in those caverns with Flandre! You remember yourself ripping out your own eye to free yourself! You remember feeling Cirno’s blood on your hands, then feeling those other fairy’s blood on your hands instead! You were there when Adam became Glish, when Nathaniel told you “the truth”, and when Rumia attacked you all! It happened! And now Sakuya’s telling you that it was all a dream, a delusion created by your own mind? You…this isn’t possible!

Sakuya walks over to one of the ovens. “Please, sir; you look famished. Might I prepare something for you to break your fast while you wait? Perhaps we can discuss your unfortunate escapades once you’ve had something to eat.”

[ ] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something (perhaps you can request a dish?)
[ ] Just a few tidbits; you don’t know how much you can stomach right now.
[ ] You don’t feel like eating right now. Just rest here for a while.
[ ] You don’t feel like eating right now. Ask to go see Cirno.
[ ] You don’t feel like eating right now. Ask to go somewhere else. (specify where)
[ ] Write-ins are usually pretty useful, right?

Also…
[ ] While in the kitchen, describe what you might wish to do. Talk to Sakuya about something, rummage around in the cupboards, etc.

Also…
[ ] Believe what Sakuya said. It was only a matter of time before you conspiracy theories caught up with your horrible imagination.
[ ] Remain somewhat skeptical. There’s something not quite right about all this…
[ ] Remain extremely skeptical. This can’t be the entire story; there’s always something deeper!
[ ] Don’t believe a word of it! She’s lying! You know what you lived through!

========================================

>>25532
I just read the first few introductory pages, and I can tell right now that I’m going to be enjoying it. Thank you very much for bringing it to my attention. The cover is awesome too.

>>25544
>>25545
>>25548
I find these back-and-forths entertaining.
>> No. 25551
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something (perhaps you can request a dish?)
[X] While in the kitchen, describe what you might wish to do. Talk to Sakuya about something, rummage around in the cupboards, etc.
--[X] Eat. Your body needs energy to heal.
--[X] Take her up on that offer. Discuss what you saw.
--[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Remain extremely skeptical. This can’t be the entire story; there’s always something deeper!
>> No. 25553
[x] You don’t feel like eating right now. Ask to go see Cirno
[x] Remain extremely skeptical. This can’t be the entire story; there’s always something deeper!
>> No. 25554
{X} You don’t feel like eating right now. Ask to go see Cirno.
{X} Remain extremely skeptical. This can’t be the entire story; there’s always something deeper!

Cirno~
>> No. 25555
>>25550
>I just read the first few introductory pages, and I can tell right now that I’m going to be enjoying it. Thank you very much for bringing it to my attention. The cover is awesome too.

Glad to be of service.
>> No. 25556
[ ] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Ask Sakuya for a meal she finds a propriate.
[ ] Eat food, ask Sakuya about the life of a maid.
[ ] Believe what Sakuya said. It was only a matter of time before you conspiracy theories caught up with your horrible imagination

Don't let the paranoia get to you, else it will be like Higurashi all over again.
>> No. 25557
File 12322278306.jpg - (107.24KB , 500x600 , 90231f266fbe7ab282ba6e75bbd968cf.jpg ) [iqdb]
25557
>>25550
What's this? Anon passing up an opportunity to talk to an semi-amicable Maid of Fate because he wants to chase his loli maid? It worked so well with Flandre, right? Did we forget that we have a way of checking on people without having to be present?

[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] While in the kitchen, describe what you might wish to do: scry Cirno, Nathaniel, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

Dialogue is awkward, yeah, but you need to understand the idea behind it: it keep her from time stopping to make the food. We're requesting the preparation up as much as the food. This buys us time to scry and get a status update without losing sight of Ms. Izayoi. If this is really the last day we need to ramp up the investigation. Maybe over breakfast we can either drop hints about the game, gently ply for some clues, or flat out confront her. We can make that decision when we get there, but alone time with a power player in the game is too important to pass up.
Also, tweaked the last vote to sound less frantic. We had three cards, and now we have two (we also need an eyepatch now). Last night was not a dream. If it was just Flandre's game, yeah maybe. The way it probably goes down, maybe Sakuya can spin it as a mindfuck. However, Nathaniel and Rumia were too real. She doesn't understand what we learned last night; she doesn't know that we know.
>> No. 25558
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something (perhaps you can request a dish?)
--[X] It's breakfast, right? Let's have some eggs n' bacon.
[X] While in the kitchen, describe what you might wish to do. Talk to Sakuya about something, rummage around in the cupboards, etc.
--[X] Eat. Your body needs energy to heal.
--[X] Take her up on that offer. Discuss what you saw.
--[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Remain extremely skeptical. This can’t be the entire story; there’s always something deeper!

It seems things have calmed down a bit; no need to rush into things. Let's relax and get information from Sakuya while we can. Dissect her words; find the truth amongst the lies.
>> No. 25559
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] While in the kitchen, describe what you might wish to do: scry Cirno, Nathaniel, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25561
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

Finding out if Nathaniel's actually with Remilia would definitely be useful. If we see him in danger, then we'll know if his 'sudden departure' means we won't be able to count on his help again, save for a big damn hero moment. If we could see both of Nathaniel's eyes with only one of our own, then we should be able to see others with no sight of our own. With our eye closed, it won't be suspicious if we don't immediately respond to gestures and the like.
>> No. 25565
[ ] Give Sakuya a faceful of danmaku, then stab her in the eye while she's stunned. After this, collect Cirno and go barge in on Remi and Nathaniel's breakfast.
>> No. 25571
[X] You don’t feel like eating right now. Ask to go to the bathroom.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

Why, oh WHY, if someone is clearly already deceiving you, would you willingly eat anything they offer you?
>> No. 25572
>>25571
If you're worried about poison, remember that if she wanted us dead she could have killed us while we slept. If she wants to make it look like an accident, I'm sure she could have arranged something that didn't require our cooperation here. By eating we make think we believe her lies about everything being alright.
>> No. 25574
>>25572
Oh, I'm not worried about her killing us. If she brought us inside under Remilia's orders, I think it's safe to assume she wouldn't try anything like that. It doesn't look very good for you if the person you're sent to get suddenly dies on your watch, after all.

That doesn't mean, however, she can't do SOMETHING to us.

At the moment, I think she's hoping to take advantage of our disoriented state to sell the notion that we were just wandering around the basement, and that our injuries were apparently the result of us hurting ourselves rather than the result of the twisted games that Flandre put us through.

Of course, that kinda ignores the complete and utter lack of logic in having us there in the kitchen with her. I know if I found someone in the basement, apparently delusional and possibly having stabbed out their own eyeball for some reason, I'd be more worried about getting them strapped into a bed rather than bringing them to the kitchen for a bite to eat.

If she suspects we aren't accepting her spin on things, perhaps she might slip us something to make us more receptive, or at least less troublesome. If they've got an elixir of immortality in their possession, I wouldn't think it to be impossible for them to have some other drugs, as well. If she just wants to convince us of what she says happened, perhaps she would use something to make us more susceptible to suggestion. Or, if the objective isn't so much to convince us but someone else, perhaps something to make us unable to say anything that might contradict her explanation of what happened to us.

If you don't trust someone you can't tell is lying to you or not to not shoot you in the back, why would you trust someone you know is lying to not slip you something in your food?
>> No. 25575
I wonder if there might have been the possibility of a Sakuya route in here...anyways.

[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25576
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee. Oh and lets not forget the black and white sausage, grits, potato hash, toast, fresh milk and orange juice, porridge, and of course the ham steak."
[X] Take only one bite out of anything.
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

Being lied to this blatantly really pisses me off.
>> No. 25577
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25579
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25580
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25581
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

gotta love that scrying ability, if not useful it offers atleast peace of mind. Otherwise I would have voted for seeing my Imouto.
>> No. 25582
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
>> No. 25583
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.

Man, what the hell is Sakuya up to again. I don't believe the shit that Remilia bound her with her Fate ability, she must have her own goal in this. We have to find out what is going on here and then storm in on Remilia and Nathaniel before one of the two dies.
>> No. 25584
I just thought of something after our encounter with Flandre.
Notice how she not once, but twice, made a point of saying:
>>You don’t even know I have a brother, do you?!

Might just be lack of caring on Remilia's part, until you recall what Nathaniel said a while back:
>>Flandre Scarlet, the Scarlet Sister. Yes, Patchouli mentioned her once. But a brother…didn’t mention that. Why not, I wonder?

For someone like Patchouli, who seems to have no problem sharing her knowledge with others, it seems odd she would knowingly omit something like Flandre having a brother. Unless, that is, she didn't know about Flandre having a brother.

If Remilia doesn't know, and Patchouli doesn't know, isn't it strange that Sakuya does know? I mean, sure, it's only natural she would know, since she feeds him and Flandre, but why is it that she knows while Remilia and Patchouli apparently do not? Did she tell them, and they just don't care? Or, could it be she hasn't told them at all? That seems rather careless of a maid, to not inform her mistress that she's apparently gained a new sibling, don't you think?

And now here we stand, with her telling us some fairy tale about what "really" happened to us down there, one that completely omits any mention of Remilia's sister and her brother, and with it the fact that we met them. More than that, our basement keys are now gone, removing any proof that we were even CAPABLE of meeting Flan and Adam.

It seems almost as if Remilia doesn't know not because she doesn't care, but because someone is trying to keep her from knowing. Doesn't WANT her to know.

But why?
>> No. 25586
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25586
>>>>25584
Oh wow, great observation Anon. The list, Nat's response to said list, and the fact that she is actively deceiving the entire mansion regarding Flandre introduces the prospect that for all the talk of control and deception, Sakuya's role is questionable.

>Maid of Fate – Queen

The fact that she describes herself as a chess piece gives me the notion that regardless of whatever any other role she has, she's still a part of the game. Although, "Maid of Fate" can be read two ways. One, Remilia can control fate, Sakuya is Remi's maid, a little creativity in the symbolism of being able to "control"... Maid of Fate.
The other is that she is a maid that is also in the service of "Fate," the thing Remilia is challenging and trying to manipulate. Chess is a two person game. Remilia is playing against something. We're just pieces to the game with Remilia on one side and who-knows-what on the other (would explain why we as Remi's pieces have all those interesting little notes while Sakuya doesn't). My best guess on the possible opponent is either the ephemeral thing known as "fate" resisting control, or... Yukari.

When in doubt, blame Yukari. Remi did seem awfully anxious about the prospect of having her over in our odd little dream sequence. Hmm...

I like the idea that she's an opposing force: she's playing to beat Remilia or force a stalemate, which seems to be the best, and only, outcome she has managed so far. It explains her independence and why she would be hostile towards Nathaniel: he enables Remilia to "win" the game and extend her control to all of Gensokyo instead of contained in the mansion.

Sakuya presents an interesting prospect: what if farmer, as one of Remilia's pieces, changed sides? If you can only win by changing the rules, this is a pretty good start to up-ending the whole institution and having a piece become independent of sides and playing by their own rules...

Or not.

All just theory and speculation. I'm not going to trust her (yet), and our conversation needs to be carefully controlled (paranoia is good, paranoia is wise), but this provides some ideas for what we can talk about over brecky.
>> No. 25602
>>25586

The only problem with that observation is that if Sakuya was indeed deceiving the rest of the mansion regarding Flandre and Adam, then why was there no greater reaction on her part when she found us just after Flan tried on the glasses? No mention of it in her notes other than the fact the two of them seemed to have taken a liking to us? Why no surprise at finding us in a place we should not have been in, for that matter?

This is where things get sticky. If Sakuya wasn't the one who gave us those keys, it would explain why she took them away from us now and is trying to cover up the matter by concocting that story, simultaneously explaining away our injuries while diminishing our credibility with the suggestion that we are/were delusional, BUT it wouldn't explain why she waited so long to do anything about it.
Then again, if she was the one who gave us those keys, it would explain her lack of surprise at finding us in the company of the "twins" and why she did nothing more than shoo us out into the hallway at the time. But, that wouldn't explain why she took away our keys now, and is seemingly trying to cover up what really happened to us. Unless, of course, we had somehow accomplished whatever objective there was behind giving us those keys that led us to Adam and Flandre, or just screwed up so spectacularly that she had not choice but to abort that plan entirely and disavow any knowledge of it.

This is all, of course, assuming Sakuya actually is lying about what happened to us, and we weren't really hallucinating everything that has happened to us. Of course, the missing Fate card and the gaping hole where our eye used to be suggest that isn't the case.
...unless it turns out our missing eye isn't quite as missing as we thought, and merely can't tell because of the bandage over it.
Of course, I would think you'd still be able to feel if you had an eye or not, even if you couldn't see with it. What a neat little mindfuck moment it would be though, wouldn't it?
>> No. 25606
[X] Sure; you’re pretty hungry. Eat something: bacon and eggs with some coffee.
[X] "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."
[X] Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.
[X] Stretch and rest your eyes eye.
[X] Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish.
[X] Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.
[X] But be careful with your speech; don't give yourself away!
>> No. 25618
[Sure; you’re pretty hungry. "After something like last night, I really need something to ground me. I need the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, and brewing coffee."]
[Ask about the relationship between Flandre and Remilia Scarlet.]
[Stretch and rest your…eye. Scry Remilia, Nathaniel, Cirno, then Glish while “resting”]
[Don’t believe a word of it. It's obvious she's lying.]

Lies. Lies! You don’t know why, but she’s deliberately lying to you about what happened last night, not but a few hours ago. You might be as tired as a dead hound right now, but even you can see that a temporary delusion is an explanation so full of holes it shouldn’t have even been made. But then…why’d she make it? It’s obvious she’s lying, even if she’s doing a decent job of hiding it, so why lie? Does she expect you to call her bluff, force her to tell you the truth? Does she just not want to deal with what really happened down there? Or are you supposed to just sit here like an idiot, blundering around asking yourself questions when you should be doing something more productive?

Food sounds amazingly good right now; you could do with a stiff mug of coffee right now, maybe some eggs and bacon on the side, too. Before you can make your request known to Sakuya, however, an idea hits you: why not buy yourself some time? Without those glasses you’re at a major disadvantage around Sakuya, and you can’t afford to let her stop time even for something as simple as making you your breakfast in a flash. Plus, maybe you can carve out enough time to scry your new situation out while her back is turned. It’s not the most convincing argument in the world, but hopefully Sakuya won’t be up to challenging you at the moment.

“Uggh…” you groan, rubbing your head. “No idea what’s going on right now…food sounds pretty good though. I could do with the scent of breakfast to ground me back to reality. Mmm, the smell of frying bacon, sizzling eggs, brewing coffee…I can’t remember the last time I got to smell bacon and eggs on the stove.”

Sakuya makes a half-bow. “Right away sir,” she says, gliding through the kitchen to procure the necessary supplies for your meal. If you concentrate on her form too much you realize that she’s moving just a bit too fast for a normal human, but once again, you can’t call her out on it without destroying all hopes of planning out a strategy for yourself. You stretch your arms painfully, realizing just how sore you really are. Your head buries itself within your arms as you fold them into a makeshift pillow on the table, as much for resting yourself as for not drawing undue attention when you finally decide to start scrying.

“Ms. Izayoi,” you ask, “Can I ask you a question?”

“Centainly,” she replies, cracking three eggs against the iron frying pan with the same hand, the hiss of the egg whites a friendly sound against your ears.

“Flandre and Remilia. Just what’s their relationship? I mean, I know they’re sisters, but why does Flandre live in the basement? And why did Remilia never say anything to me about her?”

The maid sighs as she measures out a cup of ground coffee into a small metal pot. “It’s her poor mental condition, I’m afraid, mixed with her temperamental ability. The young mistress is quite a sweet child at heart, but her presence would frighten the guests away, or threaten their life in the rarer cases. Please do not worry for her sake; she is quite content to remain in the basement for the majority of the time, and I would like to believe that she knows she is a liability.”

“But is Remilia okay with it? I mean, they are sisters after all. Shouldn’t they, I dunno, try to work around the insanity problem or something?”

“That…is a matter that is not my business to say. The family matters of the Scarlets are something you should address to Mistress Remilia; I wouldn’t want to say something that is out of my place. I am but their servant, and Miss Scarlet has stated more than once that her sister is a delicate subject. I trust you understand.”

“Mmm, yes, I get it. But can you at least tell me…Do they love each other?”

Sakuya freezes. You could have sworn that she just bent the fork she was using to prod the cooking bacon in half, but it’s straight by the time you look again. Her back is turned to you at the moment, but you can just tell the look on her face must explain volumes. A sore subject, perhaps?

“As they are sisters, I would assume the answer is obvious,” she answers calmly. “Should Remilia not love Flandre deeply, she surely would not allow her to remain within the mansion. But, again, it is a delicate subject, and I would rather not say more.”

“Delicate subject” your eye; Remilia doesn’t even know that Adam exists if Flandre is to be believed, and yet Sakuya does?! This maid knows far more than she’s telling, and the only reason you’re not treating her like Nathaniel right now (aside from the fact that it wouldn’t end well with Remilia) is because she’s not being a complete jerk about it. Unfortunately, you doubt that Sakuya is as willing to be your ally as Nathaniel claimed to be, so answers from her will be few and far between if she hides behind the excuse of “it’s not my business to say.”

As the delicious smell of bacon, eggs, and coffee fills the room, you rub your…eye, and flop your head into your arms once more. If Sakuya won’t be giving you information, you’ll just have to search for whoever will.

It is to Remilia your first gaze travels. Time to see if she really is talking with Nathaniel over breakfast. You see a tea table with a steaming tea set to the bottom of Remilia’s world, and from the surroundings it looks like she’s in some kind of small, dark lounge rather than a dining room. A hand reaches out in front of you and pours a cup of tea that is far too red…You’re quite aware of what it is. There is no Nathaniel to be found anywhere, and when Remilia finally looks around the room, you see quite clearly that she is alone. One more lie that Sakuya told. But where’s Nathaniel then, if he isn’t with Remilia?

A quick scry answers the question easily. You see the man wandering through the mansion halls with relative rapidity, then open a door into…the library? He runs through the bookshelves indiscriminately, and you spot several Koakumas moving towards him, though he doesn’t focus on them long enough for you to discover what else they’re trying to do. Entering the central reading area, his vision jerks around sickeningly as he looks everywhere for something. A book? Patchouli? His watch table? Whatever it is, he seems to not be able to find it, and by your judgment he’ll be searching for longer than you have to watch.

Cirno, Cirno…where art thou? A black void is all you can see. As first you dismiss it as the darkness of sleep, but a ripple catches your eye. There’s a few slightly lighter shades of black within her vision that seem to shift about periodically, almost as if she’s in a dark place rather than somewhere else with her eyes closed. A closet comes to mind, but then you remember Flandre’s caverns. Would Cirno have returned back there when you disappeared due to Sakuya’s time-stop? Or was she put there? But in either case, why isn’t she using danmaku? It’s a mystery you can’t afford to solve; that breakfast’ll be ready any minute now…

(It is not my fault…)
>> No. 25619
(…that this site makes me split these up.)

Glish is the last person you care to scry at the moment, and unfortunately he’s also the most useless. You see him shuffling through papers on the floor of his small room, all of them pieces of sheet music. An odd miniature piano sits next to him, containing the full 88 keys at a glance, but small enough and thin enough to be effectively portable if a person really tried. He alternates between writing notes on empty staff lines and tapping unheard melodies on the keyboard. You try to find some method to the madness, but there’s only one to be found: a sheet that seems to be the opening to his song, currently only titled with the words, “For Flandre”.

“Sir? Your meal is ready.”

Sakuya’s voice snaps you back into reality, and you jerk your head up to a scrumptious plate of eggs and bacon, a steaming cup of coffee next to it. All suspicions aside, you can’t deny that you really need this meal; you probably haven’t eaten since…when? Must have been at least a day ago if not more. Letting the matter of people’s imminent doom slide for a while, you quickly thank Sakuya for the meal and dig in. The taste is heavenly, pure bliss compared to the sticky, stale taste of saliva and the few streams of blood that worked their way into your mouth over the last twenty-four hours. The coffee scalds away the horrible taste in your pallet , replacing it with an earthy goodness that gives you new vigor in life. The eggs are light and fluffy…the bacon is perfectly crisp and full of that wonderful meaty flavor…No matter what may happen in the next few hours, this may very well be the best meal you will ever eat in your life. They say dire circumstances in one’s life can make even the most humble of meals taste like a feast for the gods. If so, then what would a less-than-humble breakfast prepared by a “perfect and elegant maid” taste like after going through what you’ve gone through? You imagine it would probably taste something like this.

Reveling in the bliss of this small taste of ambrosia, you remain silent and think about your situation. Sakuya was indeed lying, but you can’t let her know that…or can you? Cirno most likely isn’t just resting in the servant’s quarters, wherever she is. Remilia’s waiting for…something, Nathaniel’s searching for…something, and Glish is composing…something for Flandre. After the fear of your life always being threatened, trying to deal with “domestic affairs” back inside the mansion proper isn’t something you’re as used to as you’d like to be. Not to mention that you’re a much different man than you were before you walked into Flandre’s room yesterday morning.

But what are you going to do about all of it?

[ ] Write-in only.

========================================

Apologies for my delayed update; I was extremely swamped with one thing after another yesterday, and it appears that the Sundays of this semester will be as inconvenient as the Wednesdays of last semester.

>>25565
I think Farmer is a pretty cool guy. eh fights time maids and doesnt afraid of anything.

Except you lost your knife. Unless you think you’re awesome enough to steal one of Sakuya’s.

>>25575
>I wonder if there might have been the possibility of a Sakuya route in here...
Remember that question for the Q&A segment I’ll be holding after the story is done. Answering it here might compromise the plot more than I’d like right now.
>> No. 25620
>Remilia’s waiting for…something, Nathaniel’s searching for…something, and Glish is composing…something for Flandre.

So the end is near, we have to choose one of the three. Or trying to find Cirno or talking with Sakuya.
>> No. 25622
[x] Become the God of Destruction.
[x] Use the power of your courage to save everybody.
[x] Reduce this twisted game into light.
[x] Ride off into the sunset with Cirno.

If that doesn't work.

[x] Whatever write-in that's popular.
>> No. 25623
I suppose now is as good a time as any to try that "Future" card. Do we need to give it parameters of some sort or is it context sensitive?
>> No. 25626
>>25623
suppose instead of the future card we use the present card and get ran (and possibly Yukari?) to help Nathaniel fight remi while we grab our fairy and run
>> No. 25627
>>25626
And why, pray tell, would we want to do that?
Last I checked we disagreed with Nathaniel's stance that Remilia is the villain behind all of this, or at the very least refused to go along with him completely until we had more information regarding her and exactly WHY she would be doing all of this.
It doesn't make sense why, without any more answers than we already had before, we would just up and decide to help him kill Remilia after all, even if it's just a cover to run like a coward in an attempt to save Cirno and our own ass.
>> No. 25632
[x] Ask Sakuya about last night.
[x] Afterwards, thank her for the meal, and tell her to send Cirno to you as soon as possible.
[x] Head to the library and ask Patchouli about getting your eye back.

I want to hear Sakuya's side of the story, and there's always time for politeness. Heading to the library gives us a chance to meet up with Nathaniel, and to see if our eye could be fixed. There's also a chance, albeit a slim one, of us talking Nathaniel out of doing something stupid. He's not trustworthy, but he's still a valuable ally. If we fail to convince him, we might be able to convince him to wait a bit and let us hear Remilia's side of the story.
>> No. 25637
[x] Ask Sakuya about last night.
[x] Afterwards, thank her for the meal, and tell her to send Cirno to you as soon as possible.
[x] Go towards the library, try to find Nathaniel.

"And my lawyer, rolling up one of his sleeves, said with finality, "Here we have a perfect reflection of this entire trial: everything is true and nothing is true!"
-Albert Camus, The Stranger
>> No. 25641
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25641
>>25619
Well, this certainly is an awkward spot: caught between staying on pointless target or letting ADD set in, and playing ignorant while learning nothing or telling her to cut the crap and (probably) get murdered where we sit. At least breakfast was successful, so let's go with that
[X] Flavor overload; pass out

Well, between telling her our suspicions about the game and playing the fool, I'm inclined towards the latter. Right now, next to scrying, our greatest trump card is the fact that they don't know we know we're being lied to and manipulated. She can feed us lines all day thinking she's keeping us in the dark, but we'll just be accumulating information. The best lies are the ones with a kernel of truth, and I think Sakuya is a good liar. That determined, she said she would talk to us about our "ordeal" after breakfast, so we might as well keep that part. We picked up some marvelous little details just asking her to comment on the relationship between Remilia and Flandre.

Anyway, farmer hit the nail on the head: if Sakuya is going to side-step most direct questions with "I'm in no position to answer that," we're not going to get very far on some of the more immediate issues like "why is Remilia trying to kill me with an elaborate fate game?", "have you added any new comments to your list?", "why is my loli maid stuffed in a closet?" and "why do you pad?" That said, we should pin her down with what she can comment on. I want to test the extent and outer limits of her lies and schemes:

[X] "What the hell happened to me last night? This is all so confusing, Ms. Sakuya, please tell me what happened! I need to know!" etc., etc., plead for what happened.
[X] If she won't tell us everything without us telling her what we remember, lie: "Well, Cirno and I went down to the basement to play with Flandre and Adam like we promised. You remember, from the other day, right? Mr. Nathaniel came too, because apparently he likes dragons as much as Flandre does and the more the merrier, I thought. So, Flandre started playing the piano, but she broke all the piano keys. All of a sudden there was a huge flash of light and color. I don't know what happened after that, but I woke up in a weird place with Cirno and Mr. Nathaniel. It was a huge room, bigger than any field I've ever tilled. The walls were so high, I couldn't see the ceiling. Anyway, Remilia, Flandre, and Adam were there. They were all flying around and looked absolutely frightening. I didn't understand a lot of what they were saying, but we had to fight each other to get out. Before I could do anything, Nathaniel had... he... he killed Cirno, with that weird gun of his. And... then he killed me. Shot me, punched me, kicked me, he..." reach up, feel bandaged eye. "It was so real. I know I died there... but I'm not dead, and neither is Cirno! I'm so relieved! Thank you, Ms. Sakuya!"
[X] "Anyway, if Cirno is alright I'd like to see her right away! Could we go to the servant's quarters? I'm sure Remilia is going to want to know what a fine maid she's been so far."
-[X] If denied "Or not, you know, if she needs her rest... But after everything, I want to see that she's alright... for myself."

First question is purposely vague, make it looks like you believe her explanation, and let her spin her tale. I think she's had to do damage control for Flandre's game since Flandre has played the game before, and losing an eye is a consistent part of it; how will she spin this?
Second part might not get used, but that would be an interesting twist if it was since it should be well out of the realm of her expectations. She can lie; we can lie. My dumb write-in is more of a "WTF?" than what actually happened, and plays out like a dream-that-felt-too-real, but it shouldn't be what Sakuya is expecting, especially if we bring the "three" Scarlets into it. I was tossing around the idea of adding "Ms. Ran and another woman I didn't recognize" to put the fear of Yukari into them, but it's too much a of a stretch for farmboy to make that connection. If someone wants to add it though, by all means~ On the one hand, it could disorient her, force her to call our bluff, and/or implicitly notifies her we know what's going down. On the other, it could blow up in our face: no cause for alarm, he didn't play Flandre's game, he just had a bad dream and "got himself hurt." That's why stalling with our story until she absolutely won't tell us anymore is important. Need her to say something directly related to Flandre's game for this gamble to work. Even if this does fail, I think it may flumox Sakuya as to how we lost our eye
And in the end we chase our loli maid, but in a way phrased to force Sakuya to say creatively say "no." It'll be even harder if we give her a "sad puppy eye" that we don't have to wake her up; we just want to see that she's alive with our own eye. She's going to have to dig deep to let "You have my word as head maid of the Scarlet Devil Mansion" be her sole excuse on this one. I don't think she will let us see her, but I am damn curious on how she'll deny us.

From here on out, we've got some options. Using the Future card is not a bad idea at all. Using it in front of Sakuya probably is, though. I think we'll need to be alone for that. That should provide some direction. If not, I'd like to talk to Patchouli or Meiling. Patchu is the least likely to kill us (I think) if we tell her the truth, and Meiling could be a great source of information since she's so out of the loop from the normal goings on in the mansion.
>> No. 25643
>“What I wouldn’t give to know what you children were just talking about,” she muses to herself.

[x] "By the way, in my delirious memories from last night, I got to roleplay the older sister for the younger, in the manner of the apologist. After realizing how reckless, even borderline suicidal, this was, I came to a near-epiphany. When in possession of a fragile Ming vase, it might seem more to the point to channel a child's animosity toward a less valuable (though just as easily broken) artifact, but necessity however does not make this any less analogous to the folk idiom: Wearing a tweed coat to treat dandruff--a palliative, rather than curative, measure."
[x] Afterward, thank her for the meal, and tell her to send Cirno to you as soon as possible, along with the few things you entered the mansion with still in her possession. You hope to put at least one good league between yourself and the mansion before nightfall.

Double down on this last bust card, cash your chips in before windfall turns to ruin.
>> No. 25647
[x] Ask Sakuya about last night.
[x] Afterwards, thank her for the meal, and tell her to send Cirno to you as soon as possible.
[x] Ask Sakuya to bring you to where Remilia is.

Time to get some questions from Remilia herself, we have to stop a confrontation between her and Nathaniel. And get answers on the side, time to lay all the cards on the table.
>> No. 25655
The slight lack of votes combined with a less-than-desirable homework load and me being dead tired at the moment compound into a momentary delay in my writing. I will let this vote ride for another half-day, perhaps more, and see if more votes come in while I get my required work up to speed. If there's no improvement by around 4 PM server time (7 PM Eastern American), I'll write with whatever I have.

>>25622
I'm doubtful. Perhaps in a different story this would be possible.

>>25623
I might as well outline the rules for using the Fate of The Future:
+To use the card, an overwhelming majority must vote to use it; a 5 vs. 4 vote barely eeking out a win won't cut it, I'm afraid.
+Once used, the card will be resolved in-story, and any choices you need to make will be asked in-story as well.
Most likely there will be no question needed (I haven't decided yet), and you will simply be given the card's resolution at face-value. You must then interpret it for yourselves.
>> No. 25657
>>25655
It seems that there are no more votes incoming. Might as well write.
>> No. 25659
[x] Ask Sakuya about last night.
[x] Afterwards, thank her for the meal, and tell her to send Cirno to you as soon as possible.
[x] Head to the library and ask Patchouli about getting your eye back.