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30877 No. 30877
Post #43.1

I shook my head. She was right; better get those flowers before Miss Knowledge woke up and the surprise was ruined. I guess it wasn’t really that big of a deal, but …well, I just had this idea in my head, of how I hoped everything would turn out, and I didn’t really want to ruin it.

With a quick wave of her hand China left the room to go prepare the flowers, leaving me alone with my thoughts and the sleeping woman again. I took a few deep breaths, always trying to remember the little imperfections of the room whenever I got nervous. If I could survive a day with Flandre, I could survive a day with Patchouli…right?

Unfortunately, there really wasn’t a lot I could do until Patchouli woke up, not even preparing myself for what to expect. It had occurred to me just how little I really knew about our resident librarian, come to think of it. From the tales circulating amongst the older fairies, she’d lived in the mansion for almost a century, though no one could ever agree on a more precise time, or any particulars beyond that. She kept to herself more often than not, which I’d always found odd considering the entire mansion kept to itself in its own right. Wouldn’t it be better if all us ladies stuck together like a family? Then again, perhaps in this family full of disobedient little kids like us, Patchouli was that sullen older sister who had “better things to do with her time”. She sure seemed like it, at least.

But if all the shelves and rows of books weren’t enough to make most of us run away (that was enough for me), her odd experiments certainly were. She’d mentioned not too long ago how the “junior” fairies, as she said, were afraid of all her magic due to “superstition”, but I personally thought it was a little more than that. Every now and again she’d ask for a few fairies to help her with something or another she’d been working on, and the stories they came back with rivaled those of Flandre herself in terms of unintelligible mysticism. It’s not that we didn’t understand magic in its basest forms; I mean, we were all made of magic in its basest forms! But Miss Knowledge, she did things with magic that I think even she didn’t understand, so of course someone like me would be confused to the point of paranoia about it. To borrow an example from one of my cousins, what would you do if suddenly everything in the room you sat in turned pure silver, you couldn’t move an inch, and afterwards wasn’t ever told just what had happened? I imagine you might be a little afraid yourself.

China thankfully came back before Patchouli had even stirred an inch, with a cute little pot in her hands that reminded me of a goldfish bowl. The lavender and patchouli sprigs were planted just how I’d imagined them, not that I’d really given much thought to tell you the truth. I could already smell their soothing odor wash the blank air of the room away, slowly but surely. We exchanged a few words as she set the pot carefully on Patchouli bedstand, but I felt bad about taking up so much of her time before too long. She was just so nice and so concerned for me that it was hard for me to find words to get her back to her normal job.

I think what finally did it is when she asked if I wanted her to stick around until Patchouli woke up. The old me would have said yes, please, please stay by me just a little longer. But every day I kept feeling like I was more and more of a new me. And that new me wanted to try things by herself, even the strange and unknown things that could even be frightening. If the new me had been able to stand alone on the first day with Flandre, and on the first day with Meiling, then the new me could do it with Patchouli too.

I just wished the new me could learn to be “new” a little faster, so I could stop being afraid of how that row of books over there was sorted perfectly by the size of the bindings. Because honestly now…that’s just stupid. I’m glad I’ve grown out of that phase now; otherwise I’m pretty sure this would be so much harder for you to understand.

>> No. 30878
+ + + + + + + + + +

The waking hours of April 30, 1996 might just have been the most boring time I’ve ever had the misfortune of living through. The day had started out with such excitement, training Tai Chi with China and seeing all that weird aftermath of Patchouli’s summoning ritual. But after that it was just the magician, the flowers, and me in the room, and my two companions really didn’t have much to say. I had to be there in case Patchouli woke up, so I couldn’t leave the room, but it felt like she would never wake up. Breakfastime came and went, then lunchtime, then even dinnertime, but sleep sleep sleep was all she did the whole day.

I suppose looking back on it the day wasn’t all that bad. With nothing else to do I’d investigated the room with equl parts duty and curiosity, making a mental note of where everything was. The “kitchen corner” on the ground held a small but imposing array of appliances, all very silver and futuristic-looking. Here was the television, there was her computer desk, and another writing desk close to the ceiling on a small ledge. One, the three, four, five bookshelves? And twice as many cabinets and dressers, though of course I didn’t peek inside of those; that would be rude, right? All in all it really did look like a giant one-room apartment with everything you needed to survive, though the three-dimensional feel of the room was an interesting change from the norm. The more I floated around in it, though, the more comfortable it felt. Sure it was all nice and neat, but I had to give Patchouli credit for planning out such a unique room.

It must have been…close to eight o’ clock, maybe? I was buried in a stack of blank papers, determined to practice my handwriting for the next time Flandre wanted me to take notes, when I heard a rustling of bedsheets and a quiet moan come from above me. It came so suddenly it made me drop my pen; I’d gotten used to the silence of the room by then, so this was quite a shock. My purpose for living finally reigniting itself, I flew back over to Patchouli’s bedside, where the woman had rolled over onto her side and was battling with the final shackles of sleep. I watched patiently as one of her bleary violet eyes cracked open just a sliver.

“Nnnmmmm…Father, did you…? Wait…oh. Not……” Was she talking to herself, or to me? I got an uncomfortable flashback to some of the not-so-precious moments I had spent with Flandre before Patchouli rubbed her eyes and fully joined the waking world.

“Good morning, little miss,” she said as she greeted me methodically. “I see Meiling made good on her promise to keep you nearby.”

I bowed my head towards her. “Umm, it’s…It’s actually after dinnertime, Miss Knowledge. You’ve been asleep all day. How’re you feeling?”

“Nnnngh, sore, if you must know. Seems I’ve been going too many nights without sleep again; I should really find—“

As Patchouli pulled herself into a sitting position and slid the bedsheets off her body, it became quite clear to her that she was dressed in nothing but her silky white undergarments and some gauze. As she slowly slunk back under the covers and pulled them up to her chin, I thought I saw her cheeks redden a bit even beyond her sunburnt skin. I couldn’t help thinking how cute I might have found it if her skin condition hadn’t actually been so serious.

“May I ask what happened to my clothes?” she questioned, hiding whatever embarrassment she might have had behind a very apathetic tone.

I twiddled my thumbs as I looked away from her, focusing my eyes on the flower pot instead. Apparently she didn’t like being seen without any clothes on, which only served to confuse me more. Hadn’t China and Flandre not really cared about the same sort of thing? “Oh, well, uhhm, they’d gotten all dirty and burnt, so China took them off when she bandaged you up. I don’t, uhh, know where she put them after that, though…”

“Mmm…understandable. I’d liked that turtleneck, but all good things must come to an end, it seems. A small price to pay for what I’ve learned today. And on that note…paper.”

“Paper, Miss Knowledge?”

“Paper, a pencil, and something flat to write on. I need to record what I saw, immediately, before I forget what I felt.”

Nodding, I glided back down to my handwriting papers and picked up a dozen or so blank sheets, then over to her writing desk for a few pencils and a clipboard. Patchouli had managed to find a way to lean against the bed’s headboard without exposing herself to the air, and likewise found a way to grab the writing materials and start jotting down notes with her arms still swathed in the bedcovers. It almost looked like she was nothing more than a disembodied head and two hands moving in a sea of cotton cloth. An odd mental image to you, perhaps, but I found it rather interesting myself.

[ ] Figuring that great geniuses probably don’t like to be disturbed, I kept silent as I watched Patchouli write and write some more.
[ ] “I…I hope you like the flowers, Miss Knowledge. I had Miss China pick them out for you.”
[ ] “So, can I ask what I might be helping you with for the next few days?”
[ ] “Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”
[ ] “Excuse me, but…When you talked about me being, umm, ‘someone learning, but not quite yet learned,’ exactly what did you mean…?”
[ ] “Umm…So, exactly what are you doing there? It looks complicated.”

Patchouli isn’t going to get angry at you here, even if you ask her “stupid” questions that could “inhibit” her research. Fear not, little one…

Author’s Note: Well, I think I got through Hell just fine this time. Updates may be slowish as I get back into the feel of writing, but I’m still alive~
>> No. 30882
[x] “Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”

Patchouli needs to be more open if she's ever gonna wrangle herself a succubus.
>> No. 30886
[B] “Umm…So, exactly what are you doing there? It looks complicated.”
>> No. 30887
[x] “Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm… Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess… why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”
>> No. 30889
[X] “Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”

Glad to have you back.
>> No. 30893
[x] “Umm…So, exactly what are you doing there? It looks complicated.”
>> No. 30897
[X] “Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”
>> No. 30898
...Please tell me we're going to see casual-dress Rider Patchy again.

Please.
>> No. 30899
[X] "Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…"

[X] "Ah, um... would you like me to get me some of your clothes?"
>> No. 30915
File 125026406864.jpg - (132.81KB , 900x640 , flandrehoodie.jpg ) [iqdb]
30915
5 votes for the clothes question.
2 votes for Wat r u doin?

Wow, that...that actually won?! You guys never cease to amaze me. Writing now, but I want to do this scene justice, so it won't be up until later tonight. Boy will this be fun to write~

>>30898
Not to worry, she'll be back. I like Touhous wearing something other than the same poofy dresses for a change. Image related?
>> No. 30930
“Th-This may seem silly, Miss, but it’s just, umm…Well, w-why do we wear clothes? Or, I guess…why did you get embarrassed just now? Did I do something wrong? I’m just so confused…”

Looking back on that moment, I’m still not quite sure what went through my mind to make those words come out of my mouth. I knew I’d been thinking about clothes (or lack thereof) ever since Patchouli had blushed, but to say those sentences out loud, and to her of all people…I want to say it was just a mistake, a slip of the tongue in a misconstrued effort to break the ice between us. I want to say I was trying to make a good first impression on Patchouli, and just had the bad luck to speak my mind at exactly the wrong time. But the truth is, I really don’t think it was a mistake. I think it was that new part of me, the part that was bold and brave, and she had just done without thinking what I was too afraid to do myself. I suppose sometimes you have to take risks if you want rewards; like Flandre had told me, “if you never try new things, you’ll never have any new things.” Even if those new things are embarrassing, they’re still new. And after all…I was curious about it.

My words cut through the solemn atmosphere of the room like a knife, even causing Patchouli’s pencil to grind to an immediate halt. I didn’t breathe. She didn’t breathe. There was nothing to hear in the room but the faint hum of the appliances below us.

She finally coughed from the lack of oxygen and covered her mouth with her writing hand, baring the skin on her arm and shoulder she had tried so hard to conceal. I couldn’t tell just how she was going to react, but it was too late to take those words back now, even if I apologized. The damage was done, for better or worse.

“This question is—ehouff, ehouff—most…awkward. This—ehouff—this many years, and no one has told you?”

“Told me what, Miss Knowledge?” I responded, with enough naïveté to make her flinch. “All Sakuya ever said was that we have to wear these uniforms if we’re going to live under Mistress Remilia’s roof. And, I guess I heard something about humans getting embarrassed about that stuff from a few movies, but I never really understood those parts…”

She emitted a deep sigh and stared at her hands, whispering laments to herself. “To think…that I would have to be the one to introduce a child to…I, a professor of modern and medieval science, a pioneer in the statistical analysis of magic itself…that my wisdom would be applied as such…”

She tapped the eraser end of the pencil on her clipboard slowly, no doubt thinking very hard to herself, as she probably always did. That only served to confuse me more, unfortunately; wasn’t it just a simple question, after all? Surely someone smart like Patchouli could explain it to me, right? Then again, when you don’t know anything about something you don’t know, you don’t know just how much there is to not know, you know?

…Perhaps Flandre is getting inside my head more than I thought.

Before long Patchouli set the pencil behind her ear and looked at me, her expression returned to its no-nonsense straightforwardness. She wasn’t mad, which was a giant relief to me, but she was quite serious, so I tried to be as well.

“Young miss,” she told me slowly, so that I would understand, “your question is a valid one, and I understand your confusion. The answer is a deep-rooted aspect of human nature; however, you, being a soul that has not yet been exposed to such human nature, has therefore no basis of understanding to ground yourself upon. Because of this, I feel it may be necessary to...” She trailed off, a somewhat pained expression on her face. It took only a few seconds for her to compose herself, but the effect had already been made. Was this question really going to be that complicated to answer? I shuddered a little bit as I feared for the worst.

She took a deep breath to calm herself, then continued, but not without slight pauses here and there. “…to, ehouff, explain to you, certain aspects of human instinct that might…provoke, the problematic confusion about clothes, or lack thereof. While it—ehouff—may not be, prudent, to explain everything in…complete detail, I understand you are a curious little soul, and your pursuit of knowledge is quite laudable. For that reason I am going to take it upon myself to answer your question personally, if only so that you will receive no—ehouff—misunderstandings from the other residents. Disinformation is perhaps even worse than ignorance, for it only serves to build you up higher before an inevitable fall.”

Even though she used way too many big words in there, she’d gone slow enough for me to basically understand what she was trying to say. She knew that it was hard for fairies to understand non-fairy things, I guess, so she was prepared to answer all those “whys” that I’d probably ask no matter what. I was actually kind of impressed; I’d have figured that she would have just cast me off as a silly dreamer with silly questions that weren’t “efficient” or something like that. She was no China when it came to talking with me, sure enough…but she really didn’t seem that bad. When she tried, at least.

“I ask please that you give me silence first so that I can finish my notes,” she told me, picking up her pencil. “After which…I will explain what I can. I admit that I am most out of practice in talking to a fairy at length; some of my words may not reach your ears, and for that, I apologize. But now, I ask for patience.”

Nodding my head, I settled back into my little stool as Patchouli wrapped herself in her own little bubble of concentration. She would often mutter to herself under her breath, flipping back to previous pages and re-writing some sections of her notes. I could see a little bit of the paper from my seat, but it was incomprehensible from that distance, and it wouldn’t have been polite to edge up closer just then. All I could do was stew in my own thoughts, trying in vain to wrap my head around “clothes”.

I just didn’t get it. What did they do for you, really? Sometimes they were tight and uncomfortable and itchy and even hurt me when I bent the wrong way, or else they would flop around and make me stumble or get in my way when I tried to grab something. I supposed that maybe in the wintertime you could use them to stay warm, but us fairies really don’t need to worry about that for the most part, so why would we still wear them? And what about in the summertime? Protection from things, maybe, like dirt and dust? I guessed some parts of my body tickled more than others when they got dirty, but taking a bath could fix that, and then you wouldn’t have to worry about washing both you and your clothes. And yet, everyone around me (well, except my cousins) acted like you couldn’t live without them. What was I missing…?
>> No. 30931
I lost track of the time (that still happens a lot to me even nowadays), but eventually the bedridden magician set down her notes and sighed, massaging her eyes as she did. She hadn’t filled up nearly as many pages as I might have expected, but then again, how much can you write about seventeen seconds of summoning, anyways? Folding her hands together, she turned to address me.

“With that taken care of, I believe we can begin,” she said calmly. “Where should I start the explanation?”

I scratched my head. “Well…in the beginning, I guess. That’s the best place to start, isn’t it?”

“Very well. The origin of wearing clothes is originally religious in nature, owing to some universal moral code which is often a basis for said religion. As an example, the Judeo-Christian history of the Garden of Eden states that in the beginning of the world, when the universe was perfect, humanity walked the Earth unclothed without compunction. However, after the world fell into sin and became imperfect, humans then felt great shame for their nakedness, and clothed themselves to hide this shame.

“Though in this day and age religion is hardly as significant as in was several millennia ago, virtually every culture on Earth, at one point, held a set of religious or spiritual beliefs in high value, which often shared similar principles. The foundations of these beliefs are still present in the world of today, even if the meanings behind those foundations have since been lost, or in many cases simply ignored.

“It is from these original foundations that humanity has developed the concept of ‘modesty’, of not drawing undue attention to oneself. It is generally considered immodest amongst humans to walk about unclothed, or even with very little clothing for that matter. Thus, because so many human cultures have a similar basis with respect to modesty, the habit of wearing clothes has become a near-worldwide practice. There are of course some exceptions to this rule, as with anything, but that is perhaps another matter for another day.”

Though her voice had grown raspy and faint at times, the way she had continued to talk without stopping didn’t cease to amaze. I would have thought that afterwards my brain would have been filed with amazing epiphanies, but really it was just a sort of an awed respect that Patchouli could speak that fast. She’s never been the healthiest of people, as you’ve probably gathered, and Sakuya said she had trouble with breathing in particular if she got too stressed. I sort of wondered what would happen if Flandre and her were to get into a sort of “talk-off”; who would win?

I would have been happy to just try and sort out her explanation inside my head, but it seemed that wasn’t enough for her. She gave me a handful of seconds to let her words sink in before “putting the ball into my court”, so to speak.

“Now then, I’ve no idea how much you managed to glean from that, but we shall soon see. Repeat to me, in your own words, why humans wear clothes.”

I’d have found such a proposition very intimidating before, had Meiling not done the same thing with me for the last two weeks, forcing me to answer my own questions to find out just how much I really knew. It was a good method, I supposed, at least it worked well enough for me. I tried to sift through Patchouli’s mountain of words as best I could, picking out what she’d repeated more than once and what seemed to be the important parts.

“All right, ummm…” I began, working hard to get my words right. “We wear clothes because, uhh, every, body, else…does? And because…everybody wore them in the past? And it all had to do with being modest and respectful, I suppose…”

“In a nutshell, that is not a bad summary,” Miss Knowledge replied, giving a slight nod in my direction. “Though I must say…when put into those words, even I would be skeptical about the concept. But do you at least understand the premise, now?”

“More or less, Miss. I mean, it’s not the magical answer I was hoping for, but the answer to mysterious things can end up being a lot more boring than you think it does at first, right?”

“Indeed…and in my case, often to the point of madness. Occam’s Razor cuts both ways, whether you accept it or not…” She said those last few bits more to herself, I assumed, since she wasn’t really looking at me when she said them.

“Well, thanks a lot for helping me out,” I said back. “It’s still kinda fuzzy, but if you’re supposed to wear clothes, then I guess you’re supposed to wear clothes.”

She nodded again, but her focus really seemed to be elsewhere now. It occurred to me that, with that question out of the way, I should probably get back to helping her out with whatever it was she wanted to do. But as I was about to stand up…

“In truth, there is, a more…ehhmmm, exact, answer to the question. It may be decidedly more…complex, to understand, but it is knowledge not exactly without—ehouff, ehouff—benefits. I highly doubt you could, huummm, comprehend much of it at your current state, but nevertheless, it may further sate your curiosity...or, it might further…exacerbate it.”

Why was Patchouli’s face getting all red and embarrassed again? I could only guess that the “exact answer” might be making her feel uncomfortable, but if that was the case—if even Patchouli Knowledge herself was unsure about telling me something—did I really want to know?

[ ] Now wasn’t the right time. I’d taken up enough of hers already, and I bet she had lots of work to be done.
[ ] No. No, I didn’t really want to find out. I had my question answered, and I was fine with it. Sometimes there’s things you just don’t need to know…
[ ] It seemed weird all right, but maybe…maybe if I just had her tell me a little bit more…
[ ] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.

In before “What’s a va-jinnay?/Pray tell, what defines a woman?”
>> No. 30934
[ ] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30938
[x] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30940
I didn't expect that to be as entertaining as it was, but honestly the flustered Patchouli is rather compelling.

>“Indeed…and in my case, often to the point of madness. Occam’s Razor cuts both ways, whether you accept it or not…” She said those last few bits more to herself, I assumed, since she wasn’t really looking at me when she said them.
>[...]
>She nodded again, but her focus really seemed to be elsewhere now.

You hear those gears grinding? I can already imagine how this line of conversation plays into Koakuma being summoned as more than merely an exercise in magical technique.

[x] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30942
[X] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.

Too bad Meiling isn't the one showing us this... Then again, a Patchouli is fine too.

> I sort of wondered what would happen if Flandre and her were to get into a sort of “talk-off”; who would win?
Fund it!
>> No. 30944
[X] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30945
[B] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30947
[x] But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow.
>> No. 30956
7 votes for…inquiring further.

You seven…I can’t decide whether I want to have your babies right now, or kill you while you sleep.

Just so you know, at first I was going to write this scene completely straight, with Patchouli being classic Patchouli and explaining everything in way too much detail. Then I realized how awkward it would have been for me to write, and how boring it would have been for you to read. Sooooooo…I’m not doing that.

I’m doing something funnier.

For better or for worse, writing now.
>> No. 30972
But I…I had to be outgoing. I had to find out new things, even if they were weird and I regretted them later. It was the only way to grow. Whatever this “answer” was, and however embarrassing it might be to hear, for both me and her…I still wanted to know.

It took some effort to break the tenuous silence between us, but I finally managed to squeak out something like, “Well, I…I-I’d still like to know…”

Patchouli’s fingers tensed as she reflexively grabbed the bedsheet. “…Did I hear that, correctly…?”

“Yes, Miss Knowledge. If, I mean, if it’s a better answer, I’d like to know it.”

“It is…not an easy thing to know,” she replied, her composure waning. “Even humans, when they first discover this answer, have trouble adapting to life afterwards. For someone like you, I…I cannot even say…”

“If, umm…If you don’t feel comfortable telling me, Miss Knowledge, that’s fine. I mean, I don’t want to be a bother—“

“No,” she interrupted abruptly, her voice suddenly more sure of itself. “No. If you are truly curious, it is better that you be told now, by me. While I mean no offense, I believe the other residents of the mansion are…shall we say, ill-suited to address the matter. Miss Hong would sugarcoat the answer and dilute its impact, and Miss Sakuya would fumble about for the right words, confusing you even more. As for the Mistress and her sister…I shudder to think how they might explain it to you. No, it should be me, and it should be now.”

I must say I was a little taken aback at her new determination, after she had been so flaky beforehand. Straightening herself up in her bed, she calmly reached out a hand and caressed the petals of the patchouli blossom, the faintest of smiles on her face.

“I’d like to thank you for these flowers, little miss. I’ll be the first to say that I’ve little time for distractions in my life, and yet…perhaps distractions can bring with them unexpected benefits. But I digress.”

Trying to smooth the mood over a little better, I asked her, “Is there anything I could do to make you feel more comfortable? I don’t really know what to expect, but I’d feel bad if I wasn’t helping you any.”

“Aaaaah, I really couldn’t say,” she sighed, moving a few violet strands of hair out of her face. “In truth, I don’t quite know what to expect either. It seems no amount of book knowledge prepares you for explaining this sort of thing to another. But perhaps…if you would just sit on the bed, at my feet…I would appreciate it.”

On the bed? It was my turn to blush now. A bed was, well, that was something special. It felt like such an honor to be allowed to sit on Patchouli’s bed, no matter how small and simple it looked. Timidly I scooted away from my little stool and climbed up to the foot of her bed, curling my feet under me and trying not to crowd Miss Knowledge too much. Patiently I waited for her to begin “the talk”, and whatever consequences I had to endure.

She cleared her throat. “I mentioned to you that a lack of clothing was considered immodest in many worldwide cultures, and this is not untrue. However, the reason it is immodest I have left silent, until…now. To better, explain…? I’m sorry, I think we have a visitor.”

As she slowed her explanation to a halt, I could hear it too. A sharp rapping on the bedroom door below, followed by an equally sharp voice.

“Patchouli! Patchouli Knowledge, wake up! I’m not going to let you hide in your bed all day; we are going to talk!”
>> No. 30973
Re, Remilia? My suspicion was quickly confirmed when the visitor opened the door herself and stomped her way up the lift and into our midst. So rude…aren’t you supposed to let the bedroom’s owner open the door for you? I mean, I suppose she was allowed to because she owned the entire house, but it still felt wrong. What if Patchouli hadn’t wanted to be disturbed? But anyways, the Mistress crossed her arms and tapped a fuzzy slippered foot at us, the rest of her similarly garbed in a pair of lacy pink pajamas. I could never really tell if Mistress Remilia was serious or not when she frowned at people like that; perhaps you have the same problem yourselves, no?

“It is customary to wait for a resident to let a guest into her domicile, Miss Remilia,” Patchouli said, not without a little annoyance in her tone.

“It’s also customary to check with your landlord before damaging their property, Ms. Knowledge,” Remilia shot back.

“If you have a problem with my research, then tell me so.”

“I believe that’s what I’m doing. No so much with your research as with our lack of communication, but it amounts to the same thing.”

“Are you going to try and be more specific at some point? I do have other things I’d like to be doing right now.”

“Well I’m trying to, but…Bah, Patchouli, you’re missing the point! I can’t just spell everything out for you like one of your bloody textbooks, this is real life! What are you doing, anyways?”

The dichotomy between Remilia and Patchouli was, I must say, interesting to watch. Here was Remilia, frowning and wrinkling her nose at the librarian as she more or less whined at her, motioning with her hands at hardly acting like a proper “mistress”. All the while Patchouli just sort of sat there, composed and unflappable. It made me wonder how the two of them had ever managed to get along for so many decades together, but I’d heard that “opposites attract”, and could only assume it was something like that.

The librarian stared at me for a second or two, not quite unlike the way China did when she was “mothering” me, and then back to Remilia. “We were in the middle of a…discussion, Remi, until this rather abrupt interruption. I would prefer to get back to it without much trouble.”

Remilia flashed her a glaring squint, then focused on me, then her again, then me again, her face morphing each time from frustrated to intrigued, to deductive, and even the faintest hints of a devilish grin thrown in there. Whatever she was thinking in that mysterious head of hers, she’d apparently caught on to something that Patchouli caught as well, but it went clear over my head.

“Nnnnnoo,” Remilia finally said, drawing out each little part of the word. “Don’t you dare think about telling her that. Don’t, you, dare.”

Now that had managed to get under Patchouli’s skin. “Remilia—ehouff, ehouff—what I teach my students, and what I feel they need to know, is none of your concern.”

“It is if one of your students is going to be one of my attendants. I have a say in this too, you know, and I say you can’t.”

“On what grounds?” Patchouli asked, finally going on the offensive. “This girl is smart, and willing to learn. By what Flandre and Meiling have told us already, she’s more mature than I’ve normally giving her kind credit for. And more importantly, she wants to be told.”

“She’s also a fairy,” the mistress commented, jabbing a thumb at my wings over her shoulder. “What, are you going to give her a complete biology lesson, maybe throw in some visual aids and a study of human psychology for good measure? Patch, I can barely understand the words that come out of your mouth once you get going, and sometimes I don’t even think you do! Don’t make me laugh.” A rather ironic statement from her at the time, as that characteristic little fanged grin of hers was already stuck fast onto her face.

I could tell that, try as Patchouli might, the conversation was going downhill for her, and she struggled to make up her lost ground. “It…It would be far better than the train wreck Sakuya would make of it, or Meiling’s affectionate babying. And God knows the approach Flandre would take with it.”

“Well then,” Remilia replied, a twinkle in her scarlet eye, “that leaves…me, doesn’t it?”

Wait…what?

Patchouli was thinking the exact same thing as me, it seemed, and her expression then mirrored the one she’d shown to me when I’d asked here about clothes in the first place. “Remi, n-no…no, you can’t…”

“Watch me.”

Without hesitating, the lilac-haired vampire glided over next to me and, politely but surely, ushered me off of the bed. By that point I had thoroughly lost any sort of preparedness I might have had for this whole ordeal. Patchouli being embarrassed about something, Remilia barging in and ruining the mood, then this awkward back and forth between them, talking in some kind of code with me as just a piece of scenery in the background…what was I supposed to do? My body just sort of felt itself being cradled along by Remilia’s arm, my mind desperately trying to sort itself out as the librarian raised her voice anxiously.

“Remilia!” Patchouli cried, sitting straight up as her covers unceremoniously fell away and exposed her underthings once more. “Please! She—ehouff, ehouff—She has to be told properly!”

“I’m not a witch, Patch; honestly, lighten up! Just sit back and rest for a bit; I can handle this. And put some clothes on while you’re at it, mmm? It’s indecent.” She draped her arm around my shoulder and sighed, trying to comfort my fluttering nerves. “Shh, shh, don’t worry,” she cooed to me lovingly, “I just want to tell you what every girl needs to know about being a woman. Come on, let’s take a walk.”

This, all this…it was all so confusing for me…so fast. But…

[ ] …But I guess, Remilia was right. Patchouli liked to say things I didn’t understand, and that was all I really wanted: to understand. I was just a girl, like she’d said; if I was going to grow up, I needed to start being a woman. And after all…this was Remilia herself asking me. I couldn’t just turn her down, could I?
[ ] …But Patchouli, It looked like she really wanted to tell me this. Maybe it was important to her, or it was just important for her that Remilia didn’t tell me, but whatever it was, I felt like I should stay there, with her.
[ ] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--( ) Then neither of them would get to. I’d just go ask Meiling or Flandre or someone some other time.
--( ) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

Author’s Note: I’m sure I missed an obvious extra option here. Oh well, write-ins always work.
>> No. 30974
[ ] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
and
--( ) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

i'm gonna love listening to each version of the birds and the bees...
>> No. 30975
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
and
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30976
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30978
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30980
[X] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(X) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

"Wait, so... one person... and then the other... what? I don't understand this at all. Can you show me?"

And then there were hot dickings tribbings for everyone. Or not.

On another note, I'm tempted to ask Remilia to explain this alone, if only because I can't help but imagine her turning our little fairy into a sultry seductress.
>> No. 30981
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
and
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

Sounds good to me.
>> No. 30986
[X] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(X) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30987
File 125049376827.png - (142.27KB , 907x603 , 1191907496703.png ) [iqdb]
30987
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

god this just keeps getting better
>> No. 30988
>>30956
> You seven…I can’t decide whether I want to have your babies right now, or kill you while you sleep.

Why not both?

[X] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
--(X) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.

I'd love to see both individual, uncompromised versions, but this is probably the best that we'll get! Loved this update, by the way.
>> No. 30990
>>30988

This. Let's do it.
>> No. 30991
[x] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
and
--(x) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30996
[B] …No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me…
and
--(b) Then they’d just have to compromise and take turns.
>> No. 30999
11 votes for not taking these girls’ crap and compromising instead.

You surprise me yet again; I’d just tacked that third option on at the end after thinking that two might not be quite enough. Shows how much I know. All right, writing now, but of course this scene must be done justice, so it may take some time.

>>30980
> I'm tempted to ask Remilia to explain this alone, if only because I can't help but imagine her turning our little fairy into a sultry seductress.
Wouldn’t that be more suited for the typical Koakuma? Perhaps you should have waited, no?

>>30988
> Why not both?
Not a bad idea. I could teach the kids to vote for the things I enjoy.

> I'd love to see both individual, uncompromised versions, but this is probably the best that we'll get! Loved this update, by the way.
Mmm, I might write them up as non-canon side updates one day, but I’d rather focus on the story itself for now. Let’s see if I can even get through one embarrassing scene first.
>> No. 31000
…No, no buts. Those two were arguing over me like I was just some thing, a pet they needed to train. But I wasn’t a pet. I was a person. And I wasn’t going to let them push me around like this. If they couldn’t agree on who would tell me, then they’d just have to compromise and take turns. I’d been all enamored and shy about this mysterious “reason” for wearing clothes, but frankly, this exchange between them had done nothing but make me as annoyed at them both as Remilia seemed to have been at Patchouli, the more I thought it over. Patronizing…that was word that had come into my head just then. They were patronizing me, weren’t they? And I didn’t like that.

It was difficult for maybe the first half-second, but I suddenly pulled myself out of Remilia’s grasp, much to her surprise. A little nervous but getting braver every second, I backed away from them both and wore a frown on my face. They returned my frown with intrigue, perhaps wondering where I was going with this. I wondered that myself, to be honest.

“N-No. No, I’m not…I’m not just some puppy you get to teach new tricks to,” I said, forcibly ignoring the part of my brain that was pleading with me to stop being rude to my mistresses. “Look, it’s, umm, it’s really nice that you both want to help me grow up, but, just…just stop fighting! I know you want to help, but right now you’re both confusing me! I wanna know—really I do!—but not if…not if you’re going to be all stupid about it! You, you can both take turns, that way everyone’s happy, okay?”

Remilia sighed and rolled her eyes at me, leaning against the nearby wall, while Patchouli was still just kind of sitting there flustered, still forgetting that she was showing us the underwear she didn’t want to show us. I imagine we all looked pretty silly at that point; I don’t even want to think about what my face must have looked like back then. The mistress was the first one to break the silence.

“Seems you’ve got an edge on you after, girl. Fine, fine, the customer’s always right; we’ll do it your way. Any objections, Patch?”

The woman shook her head. “No, that’s…that’s a logical approach. I have no objections.”

“All, all right then,” I continued, trying to take charge of the situation (I was the reason for all this, after all!). “Miss Patchouli, I can, umm, go get your pajamas for you, and then maybe we can all sit down and…talk, I guess.” She slowly pulled the covers back in front of her torso, blushing again.

The mood seemed to calm down a lot after that point. Remilia ushered herself down to one of the armchairs on the first level while I helped Patchouli get out of bed and dress herself. She was still having considerable difficulty walking by herself, and any sudden movements caused her to wince, so I acted more or less as her crutch as we went down to join Remilia. I’d asked the librarian why she didn’t just float in the air with magic like she normally did, but she just muttered “Too tired” at me. A curious thing human magic must be. Perhaps she’d tell me about it in the coming days.

Remilia had made herself a small pot of coffee while she’d waited, which Patchouli and I graciously declined. I’d tried coffee a few times in the past; it smelled quite lovely to me, but I could never make my mind up about the taste. And anyways, now wasn’t the time to worry about coffee. The three of us sat down in separate chairs around the low glass table, waiting for each other to say something.

“So, how’re we doing this?” Remilia asked, setting down her cup.

I thought about that for a little while before replying. “I, I think it’d be easiest if we all just went slow at first. One of you can say something, and then you can switch if I don’t understand it or you think the other person isn’t doing it right. But, but no arguing! This wasn’t supposed to be such a big thing...I was just curious, is all.”

“It’s fine, it’s fine. Certainly better than arguing with Patchouli for the rest of the night over her experiments, though don’t think I haven’t forgotten about that, dear; you’re still going to have to deal with me after this.”

“Obviously,” the librarian responded, folding her arms. “Though, in my defense, I believe you are overreacting.”

“Overreacting about summoning demons?! The day you underestimate something like that is the day you die, Patch.”

“It was not a demon per-se, Miss Remilia; a more appropriate term would—“

“H-hey, I said no arguing!” I interjected. “We’re getting distracted. Mistress, I-I’d like it if you’d start first, I guess.”

“It’d help if I knew where I was supposed to start, wouldn’t you say?” she remarked, leaning back in her chair. “I’m the one butting into the middle of this conversation, after all.”

“Well, I…I’d just asked Miss Knowledge why we all have to wear clothes; I’ve never really understood it myself. She told me that, I guess, the world world’s just worn them forever, because it’s just their culture or something like that. She was going to say something else, too, but…well, then you came in.”

Remilia tapped her finger on the side of her armchair, pondering my words playfully. Was she thinking about how best to approach the situation, maybe? As the mistress thought unknown things to herself, Patchouli helped herself to a small cup of coffee and muddled around with adding sugar and cream to it, perhaps just to pass the time in this awkward situation.

“The modesty angle, is it?” Remilia finally asked rhetorically. “Well, that’s not too hard to work with. It’s all going to boil down to sex in the end, so there’s no sense beating around the bush. Little fairy, have you ever heard of the word ‘sex’ before?”

Sex…Mmmm, now that was a hard question for me to answer at the time. Oh, not because it was about “sex” specifically, but more because it was asking me to try and recall an unusual word I probably hadn’t heard very much, if at all. I’ve never been that good at remembering things, as I’ve said before. But as I searched my brain for any recollections of the word, I managed to stumble upon a few instances.

“Well, I think I’ve heard the word, umm, ‘sexy’, in a few movies before,” I replied. “I thought it kind of meant like someone thought someone else looked really nice. Is that sort of the same thing as sex?”

“Ahhh, yes and no. They’re related, but sex is…well, it means something entirely different. Words can be tricky like that. With me so far?”

“Umm…not really. Miss Patchouli, what about you? I think it’s your turn now.”

The magician nodded politely. “Thank you. I trust you won’t mind if I address the situation from a slightly different direction?”

Remilia shrugged. “S’your call, so long as we end up meeting in the middle somewhere. Just…don’t draw it out, okay?”

“I was actually talking to her, not you, but as you wish.” She gave Remilia a sideways glance, but then turned her attention back to me. “Now, I recall Miss Meiling has talked to you about how this world is, shall we say, ‘imperfect’? The theoretical concept of ‘sin’ in particular?”

I nodded. Remilia gave a little “Hmm?” sound, sort of like she was interested in what Patchouli was saying. Perhaps she was intrigued that she’d take this sort of approach; I can’t really say.
>> No. 31001
“A hypothetical list was compiled many centuries ago of the so-called ‘seven deadly sins’; that is, any wrongdoing in the world could be essentially linked to one of these seven sins. They are named as such: Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy, and Pride. The necessity of clothing stems, more or less, from the sin of Lust. Do you follow?”

“Mmm, I think so. So…lust is a bad thing then? But, what’s lust? It’s Remilia’s turn again.”

My mistress rubbed her hands together, like she was anticipating something good. Should I have been afraid? “Thank you. Well, dear, lust is…well, it’s like love that’s all turned on its side. If you lust after someone—or something even—it means you’re loving them for all the wrong reasons. And, well, that means you just aren’t loving them at all, are you? Oh, it might feel good to lust at first, and sometimes no one can even tell the difference, but it’s all just a big lie in the end. You wouldn’t want to live a lie, would you dear?”

“Well, no, I guess not,” I answered mechanically, a little distracted by her “lusty” explanation. Wrong love…loving for all the wrong reasons…not even really love…I think I got what it meant, but I still couldn’t quite understand what it was. If lust was just a lie, then why lust at all? Shouldn’t you just love for real and skip all that lust business?

I voiced my concern to my two elders. “But…why? Why not just love? Why lust at all?”

It looked like Patchouli was about to say something, but she started coughing again, and Remilia stole the opening to answer me. “Sex,” she said simply. “People will lust over sex. Men particularly, in my experience. See, the thing is, loving is hard. Lusting is easy. So if you want something from someone fast, even if you’ve got to lie for it, it’s easier to lust for it. Like sex.”

“O…kay. Patchouli…what’s sex?”

If she’d been wearing glasses, I think Miss Knowledge would have adjusted them at that point. As it stood, she merely rubbed her chin and hummed a little to herself. To be honest, Remilia’d thrown the word sex around a lot; perhaps it was important. And if it was, I trusted Patchouli just a little more than her to give me a good answer.

“Sex,” she began calmly, “is intimate physical intercourse between a male and a female of the same species. Its primary purpose in the world is to impregnate the female, thereby creating children and continuing the existence of the species. It is treated with some seriousness amongst humans due to the rather…extreme, nature of the act. With humans and animals alike it is usually reserved for special circumstances between two who are emotionally close to each other; in simpler terms, two lovers. This is but a cultural technicality for the most part, as any adult male and female are physically able to have sex. Failure to take sex seriously—for example, having sex with different people in one’s lifetime—is frowned upon in many cultures, though some have been in recent years becoming more tolerant of certain sexual practices. It is widely believed to—“

”For the love of God, Patch, please, just stop talking, I beg of you! I can’t take it anymore!”

With every sentence Remilia seemed to have gotten a more and more pained expression on her face, biting her lip and gripping at her hair until her composure broke completely. She shook her head defiantly, eyes glued shut almost like a child having a temper tantrum. The librarian watched the spectacle with a heavy-lidded apathy, perhaps thinking that Remilia was overreacting. I can’t blame her myself; our mistress does the most immature things sometimes.

It didn’t take her more than a few seconds to stop fussing, but immediately afterwards she sat right on the edge of her chair and leaned towards me, closing the distance between us like she was trying to shut Patchouli out or something. She spoke curtly and to the point, in a way that was very hard to misunderstand. Not angry, not at all! Just…curt.

“Look dear, please, look at me. Ms. Patchouli’s saying nice things, but she takes too long. You know how you have a couple of holes on your body, in between your legs? The one in the front is called the ‘vagina’. Only girls have vaginas. Men do not have vaginas. Instead, men have a long fleshy nub, like a boneless finger. This is called a ‘penis’. When a man puts his penis into a girl’s vagina, that is called ‘sex’. And it feels very, very good.”

“Remi, you are—“

“Don’t interrupt. Now, because sex feels so very, very good, most people want to have sex a lot. Sometimes they will want it more than anything else in the world. But you can’t just have sex all the time. So people will think about having sex instead. They will think about the kinds of people they would like to have sex with. And that, dear…is lust. The desire for sex. And to answer your first question, if a person is ‘sexy’, it means he or she is a person other people would like to have sex with.”

“Remi, I think your turn has gone on for quite long enough.”

Patchouli had leaned close enough to Remilia to place a bandaged hand on her shoulder, the utmost of concern filling her eyes. She rested back into her armchair and took a sip of coffee, but her eyes were ever on me, waiting for any sort of reaction from me. The librarian eventually followed suit, though she seemed a bit more wary.

“Little miss,” she asked me graciously, “are you, all right? Did you…understand all of that?”

“I-I…ummm, ehhh…I…”

You can imagine that it must have been hard to me to find words to match my superiors’ expectations, and it was. They both seemed so anxious to hear my reply, that any little movement I made or intonation I uttered was crucial to them.

Truthfully, if I could choose a word to describe my feelings right then and there, I’d have to say…

[ ] …Apathetic. I mean, this was it? You put the penis into the vagina, it feels good, and you make babies with it? And lust is all about sex? I understood well enough, but for all the effort and emotions those two had put into it, frankly, I didn’t much care. It was just something you did.
[ ] …Disgusted. Th-This, that was…sex? You put the…into…and then…? Ullck, but, how…I mean, that was just…wrong! And, that…how could…that feel good?! And they’d…think about it? Imagine things about it?! Why, why, why did I ever ask about…this?!
[ ] …Satisfied. It was all kind of weird—maybe even a little gross—but it was pretty interesting, finding out why people did what they did. It explained why then men and women in the movies acted kind of funny sometimes, at least. And I had wondered where babies came from. I really wasn’t as confused as I thought I’d have been.
[ ] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…
>> No. 31002
[X] …Disgusted. Th-This, that was…sex? You put the…into…and then…? Ullck, but, how…I mean, that was just…wrong! And, that…how could…that feel good?! And they’d…think about it? Imagine things about it?! Why, why, why did I ever ask about…this?!
>> No. 31003
[x] …Apathetic. I mean, this was it? You put the penis into the vagina, it feels good, and you make babies with it? And lust is all about sex? I understood well enough, but for all the effort and emotions those two had put into it, frankly, I didn’t much care. It was just something you did.
>> No. 31004
[B] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…
>> No. 31005
[x] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…
>> No. 31006
>>31001
[X] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…

So. Much. This. Fantastic update!
>> No. 31007
[X] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…

Oh, the facts of life...
>> No. 31008
[ ] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…
>> No. 31009
Bleh, I knew you'd all go for the curious option.
>> No. 31010
[X] "Wait, I thought that babies came from storks, so how does that make the storks come...?
[X] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…

Insert perverted comment about our Friday singlehandedly experience this 'sex' here.
>> No. 31012
[X] …Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…
>> No. 31015
All right, looks like the site exists again. Hooray! I sure hope nothing's screwed up I don't know about... Anyways, back to the fairy tale!

********************************************************************************************

…Curious. It explained a lot but…it didn’t quite explain everything. Had they left some parts out? If sex needed men, why did I have to worry about it in a house full of women? Where did the clothes come in? If I had ones of those vagina things, did that mean I could have babies? I was so confused…Not totally lost, mind you; I was drawing closer and closer with each paragraph to understanding this mystery. The connection of lust and sex with human nature made me think quite a lot, but there was still more I had to ask to know for sure.

“M-Most of it, Miss Knowledge,” I finally responded, “I mean, I get the whole sex part n’ all, but, umm…well, where do clothes fit in? I still don’t quite get that.”

Patchouli quickly flashed Remilia an accusatory glare, as if to say “Don’t interrupt me this time; it’s my turn.” The woman did nothing but smile and sip her coffee, letting Patchouli do as she pleased, which she then did.

“It’s a simple enough connection. Humans and humanlike creatures in this day rely heavily on their eyes to experience their surroundings; it’s generally one of the first senses their brain will interpret. Because of this, visual appearance plays a large role in people interacting with each other. Going back to what Miss Remilia said before, peoples’ lustful nature can easily occupy their thoughts, even if it’s only unintentional. Thus, since appearance is the first thing you notice about someone, and lust makes one’s brain vulnerable to sexual desires, the connection is this: a person looking at another person of the opposite gender is immediately tempted to think sexual thoughts about that person. Can you understand thus far?”

“Yeah, that’s, that’s not so hard, I guess. I do like to use my eyes for things a lot.”

“Thank you. I must say…” She trailed off as she searched for the right word, but could find only a lamenting sigh, resting her head against one of her hands. “It is…difficult sometimes, for me to talk with others. It’s no one’s fault but my own, I’m afraid; so many years left alone with my research has caused me to forget what normal people talk like. So, if my words go above your head, I just want you to know that, I’m sorry…I’m trying my very hardest to make this easier for all of us.”

“Oh, stop explaining your explanation and just get on with it,” Remilia chided, looking into her coffee cup.

“Indeed, indeed. So, continuing onwards. The visible parts of the body related to sex—penis for males, vagina and breasts for females—greatly increase the temptation to think lustful thoughts about each other. Because lust of that magnitude is distracting and unsuitable for everyday life, it is both modest and prudent to cover these parts of your body while in public. And before you ask why we cover more than just these areas in public…it is to further prevent distraction. While not sexual in and of themselves, exposed skin near the sexual organs, such at the stomach, thighs, and shoulders, draw unneeded attention to them. Perhaps you may say ‘it is better to be safe than sorry’ in this matter.”

Ahh. So that was it. We wore clothes because, if we didn’t, a distraction could become a temptation, which could end up making everyone feel really awkward…or perhaps something even worse…? And Patchouli had nailed it right on when she’d explained it with “better safe than sorry”; now that was something I could relate to. I’d made plenty of mistakes before, and mistakes aren’t really very nice, are they? They get you in trouble and made people sad; nobody wants that, right? So a lot of times, it’s just plain smart to be extra careful, even when you don’t have to be, so you’re sure you won’t screw up. I guess sex and lust was just the same way. Made perfect sense to me…this wasn’t so hard at all!

“I think...” I responded, “Miss Knowledge, I think I’m finally starting to get it now. It’s a lot easier to fix problems if you just make sure they never happen to begin with, right? It sounds like clothes are just like that. Although…well, what do breasts have to do with sex? Or, I guess…what do they do at all? To tell you the truth, all they’ve ever seemed to do for me is just get in the way.”

Remilia stifled a giggle. What was so funny? Maybe she was laughing at what I’d said last? Looking at her chest, Remilia didn’t really seem to have breasts at all; she was probably laughing because she didn’t have to worry about them getting in the way of cleaning or lying on your stomach. In that case, Patchouli must have felt even more insulted; her breasts were bigger than mine at a glance, though right now you couldn’t tell with her baggy pajamas on.

“…Something you’d like to say, Miss Remi?” Patchouli asked, not without a little humor to her voice.

“That depends on if it’s ‘my turn’ or not.”

“You may field this question if you wish.”

“Yeah, well, I don’t exactly ‘wish’.” Nevertheless, the mistress still started talking to me. “Truth is, girl, I really don’t know why breasts and sex are related. What breasts normally do is after a woman has a child, the breasts make milk for the child to drink until it’s old enough to eat on its own. If you want, you could say since sex makes babies, and babies drink from the breasts, there’s your connection. Is there a direct link? Hell if I know. But the men go crazy for ‘em, so it’s best to keep them hidden. Unless Professor Science has an answer that doesn’t just deal with the effect of the cause?”

She shook her head. “Nothing concrete, and certainly nothing that doesn’t include more theory than fact. Another cultural mystery, I’m afraid.”

I suppose I was a little disappointed, but Remilia’s answer satisfied me well enough. And I guess if helped me remember that, even though I was small and they were big, there were some things even they didn’t know about. It made me feel like I wasn’t so far behind after all…

There was still a rather nagging question in the front of my mind, though; something that almost felt like this whole discussion was just a waste of time. The explanation of lust and sex and clothes and breasts, that was all nice and stuff, though a little embarrassing, or even disgusting (the penis really goes into the vagina? Sounds…slimy). So, I had to ask…

“Well, ummm, this is another thing I still don’t get. If all this is about sex, and sex is all about a man and woman…why is it such a big deal here, when we’re all girls?”

The two women looked at each other silently, apparently trying to get the other person to answer this one. I thought it was because of how hard the question would be to answer; you, however, perhaps know a little different, no?

“Flip you for it?” Remilia suggested.

“You would trust luck to save you from nothing more than a little discomfort? How trite.”

“Well, don’t forget, I do know a thing or two about fate. Maybe I already know which way the coin will land, ey?”

“If that’s the case, I’ll save you the energy of flipping. Little miss,” she continued, focusing back on me again, “the reason is because the concept of lust perverts things beyond what nature intended. It takes the innocence of sex and turns it to guilt; the good into the bad, and the natural into the unnatural. Sex is culturally and biologically intended for a male and female. However—ehouff ehouff—sex and sexual desires between a female and a female is not unheard of, and in fact has been gaining popularity in recent years.”

“Wait…what…?” All right, now this confused me. Hadn’t they just said…but then…what?! “But, uhh…you said sex was…girls don’t have, a penis, so…how…?”

“Don’t ask,” Remilia butted in snidely. “Seriously, you don’t want to know. They find a way. It’s not something you should think about, because it’s not natural, like Patchouli said. It’s enough for you to know that it exists, and that you should be careful about it.”

“Quite,” Patchouli added. “While the lusty desires of a woman to another woman are often much weaker than that of a woman to a man, it is still best to exercise precaution and modesty in dress, no matter who you are around.”

“Then, umm…okay, but, I guess…” This was starting to get a little weird. Sex with two women? But…it just didn’t work! It’d be like having two keyholes and no key; you wouldn’t get anywhere! And for that matter, what about…two men…Gah, no I didn’t want to think about it! It hurt my brain too much. I had to stay on target; just get my actual questions out of the way and get on with life. This wasn’t supposed to be such a big deal…

“Then…not to disrespect you, Mistress, but what about Flandre? I have to help her change her wings and her clothes, but she’s naked and doesn’t even care. And China doesn’t really mind if I accidentally see her coming out of the shower. How come?”

“Because there’s a big difference between being careful, and being stupid,” Remilia told me as she poured herself another cup of coffee. “Meiling and Flan are old enough to be perfectly comfortable with their bodies, whether they wear clothes or not. And they know that the fairies aren’t going to hold any lewd thoughts about seeing them naked, either. Things like bathing and changing clothes are things that just happen; it’s just life. No need to get all excited over little things like that. If it doesn’t bother them, don’t let it bother you either. Understand?”

“I…maybe. This is, this is something I’m just going to have to get used to, isn’t it?”

“All knowledge is,” Patchouli commented matter-of-factly. “There’s always a period of time between learning something new, and understanding something new. No one can grasp every little facet of a new concept all at once, not even the wisest. You didn’t think growing up would be easy, did you?”

“Not really,” I answered bashfully, drooping my head a little. “I just…Maybe I just haven’t had to learn anything really hard yet, and I got a little too comfortable, or something…”

“Hey now, don’t you show me a sad face, girl.” Remilia leaned over to me and raised my chin up with two of her delicate fingers. It…it was the first time I’d ever been touched by Remilia that I could remember. Her hands were so soft, every bit as soft as the young girl she appeared as. Was vampire skin supposed to be different than other people’s skin? Like, cold and clammy or something? It didn’t feel much different to me. “You’re doing a fine job adapting to all this; I can count on both hands the number of fairies I’ve seen do what you’ve done so far, in all the time I’ve lived. Ahh, my little lost orphans, growing up all by themselves…It’s fairies like you that make me feel like I’m actually accomplishing something here, instead of just sitting around, eating food and growing older…bah, no matter. Is there anything else you wanted to ask?”

“Well, I guess, just one more thing I can think of. Just out of curiosity, really. If I have a vagina, does that mean—“

”No.”
“Yes.”

The two of them spoke so simultaneously, I couldn’t even tell which of them had said what at first. Of course, a quick look at their faces cleared that right up: Remilia’s eyes were burning with an intense and resolute fire of defiance, while Patchouli’s eyes remained…well, Patchouli’s eyes. Had I struck a touchy subject, to get interrupted by both of them like that at the same time?

“So long as you have a vagina,” Miss Knowledge stated unabashedly, “you are physically capable of having sex—“

“—Mind that I’m not going to allow such depravity in this house,” Remilia butted in, rather on-edge.

Patchouli cast her a sideways glance, but kept right on explaining. “Though it is a point of note that your light weight and relative inexperience would make sex somewhat problematic—“

“—Never mind there aren’t even any men within ten kilometers of here—“

“—and for that matter, fairies are completely, physically incapable of giving birth, or even becoming pregnant—“

“—Which begs the question why they even have vaginas in the first place—“

“—A question which I’ve studied for some time without resolution, the so-called vestigial anatomy of fairies—“

“—And it’s all moot, because you’re not going to be having sex, and that’s that—“

“—Which is thus an unfortunate burden of knowledge: understanding something, then being told not to do it…”

Finally Remilia let Patchouli’s words die on their own rather than killing them herself, emitting a long drawn-out sigh. As she massaged her temple, I could tell she somewhat regretted telling me any of this at all, and I didn’t really blame her. This was all weird, all different, and even me, who kept getting championed as a courageous fairy with the capacity to learn, was having a hard time with it. I imagined this wasn’t something she’d made a habit of telling the other fairies about.

“Look, dear girl,” the mistress finally said, “I’m not trying to be rude or oppressive here. Sex is a wonderful thing, really it is…under the right circumstances. But you fairies, you’ve been given a wonderful gift: the gift of purity. You’ve been able to live almost your entire lives away from humans, away from all the vices they’re capable of. That’s what I’ve always loved about all of you, that…innocence. I never want you to lose that. But this mansion…” Remilia trailed off, throwing up her hands in indecision before starting again. “Well, I guess all I’m trying to say is be careful. Knowledge is a powerful thing, and you shouldn’t ever take powerful things for granted. I’d really prefer you not dwell on this whole sex talk much; just live life like you’ve been doing. Work hard, study hard, have fun, all those good things. Understand?”

“Yes, Mistress Remilia, I understand. And thank you, both of you, for everything,” I answered, bowing my head. I didn’t really understand, mind you, but it felt like neither of them really wanted to keep the conversation going for any longer, and neither did I for that matter. I’d been given far more information than I had ever expected, and like Miss Patchouli had said, it would take some time before I really got used to all this new knowledge anyways. Or is it wisdom? I have trouble telling the difference between those sometimes.

Remilia flopped back into her chair and rubbed her face. “Nnngh, you good, then?”

“Yes, I-I think I’ve learned enough for today.”

“Hah, finally. I don’t think I’d be able to stand much more of this. Unfortunately…I have to. Patch, I haven’t forgotten yet. You’re next.”

“Obviously,” she replied, setting down her coffee cup. “How, then, will you be reprimanding me tonight?”

Remilia put a hand to her chin in some semblance of contemplation before turning back to me. “Well, for starters, I’m going to have you leave the room. It’s been fun, but I want to talk to Patchouli alone now. Go ahead and do…whatever it is you fairies do in your free time.”

I stood up and bowed to both of them. “It’s been an honor to learn from you both. When should I show up tomorrow, then?”

“That is indeterminate,” Patchouli shrugged. “I will have Sakuya leave you a note in the morning when I’ve decided on an appropriate schedule. In any case, I’d suggest you not expect to sleep in for particularly long. You may leave us, now.”

With another bow I left the two women to their private talk about whatever it was they were going to talk about. Something about Miss Knowledge’s demon summoning, right?

[ ] Actually…that sounded pretty important and stuff. I wondered…would they mind if I tried to listen through the door?
[ ] At the time, though, I was a little too weary to care. I just felt like flopping down in my bed and sleeping on all my new knowledge. It’d been a long day.
[ ] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--( ) …I decided to investigate the library a little better; get to know the place so I could help Patchouli find things.
--( ) …I decided to take a walk (or maybe a fly?) outside. Perhaps I could visit China, too.
--( ) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.
>> No. 31017
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.

Curious to see how the other fairy's doing.
>> No. 31023
>>31015
[X] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(X) …I decided to investigate the library a little better; get to know the place so I could help Patchouli find things.

Yay! Library exploring games. I wish to be the proto-Koa.
>> No. 31054
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.

Just because we're scheduled to be with Flan doesn't mean thats the only time we can hang with her.
>> No. 31055
[x] Actually…that sounded pretty important and stuff. I wondered…would they mind if I tried to listen through the door?
>> No. 31057
[x] Actually…that sounded pretty important and stuff. I wondered…would they mind if I tried to listen through the door?
>> No. 31058
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.

This story has, quite possibly, the best Flandre ever. We need more of her.
>> No. 31059
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.
>> No. 31060
Homophobic Touhous? I think we may have broken new ground here.

[X] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(X) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.
>> No. 31068
>>31023
>proto-Koa

That sounds like the name of a volcano (add a metaphor about lustful heat bursting inder pressure here if you wish).
>> No. 31070
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.
>> No. 31074
[x] Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day…
--(x) …As unorthodox as it sounded, I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me.
>> No. 31077
7 votes for visiting Flandre
2 votes for eavesdropping
1 vote for check out the library

Flan it is, writing now...

>>31058
Tilde~
>> No. 31083
Whatever it was, it was none of my business. With the few hours still left in the day—and as unorthodox as it sounded—I really did fancy spending some time with Flandre. If anything, I could at least meet another fairy like me. Well… perhaps not exactly like me, but whatever she was like, we’d both been chosen to tend to Flandre; we had to have something important in common.

It was odd thinking about such a thing, though. I’d never paid it much mind before, but the truth is, I’d never really made any “friends” with any of my cousins, or honestly even “met” most of them. Us fairies more or less treat each other all the same, simply enjoying the company of whoever we’re with at the time. But as I’ve said before, when you love everyone, you really end up just loving no one. No one’s more or less important, we all just…are. So me actively going out to meet and talk with any one specific kin of mine…Well, it was definitely a big step for me. Only, it didn’t feel so big, any more.

One of the clocks I’d passed by said a little past nine; most other fairies would either be outside or watching the daily movie, so I saw no one else in the hallways. The basement was equally deserted, and it even felt a little spooky as I unlatched the door down to Flandre’s staircase, the dull clank of steel echoing through the dim corridors. Was I allowed to do this? Would I be interrupting something important? Would Flandre even be in her room at all? I wondered these silly little things every step of the staircase, until I stood in front of that vaultlike door. Just why was Flandre’s room kept under such protection, anyways? Was it for our protection, or for hers?

I remember the door hurting my knuckles something fierce as I rapped on it, making my presence known, then quickly backing away. It felt longer than it should have, waiting for a response, but thankfully I didn’t have to wait very long, and the steely portal swung open. A very normal-looking fairy stood in the doorway: same uniform as mine, same wings as mine, a bit shorter than me, but not nearly as thin. Her platinum-blond hair was tied up in a bun at the time, making her look sort of official to me. Was she “Tuesday”, then?

“Oh, good evening cousin,” the fairy who was probably “Tuesday” greeted. “Does Sakuya want something else now, too?”

“What? Oh, no, I wasn’t coming for any particular reason, I’m just…I guess, bored, maybe. I just wanted to visit for a while, is all. Can I…I mean, am I allowed to?”

She looked back into the room for a few seconds, where I managed to see Flandre sitting behind her computer, giving a silent thumbs-up to us both, though I didn’t see her face. With that, the fairy ushered me into the room with a simple smile.

“Forgive me, but most of us wouldn’t dare come here out of simple boredom, not unless they’re familiar with the room. Are you one of the Seven?”

I scratched my head, then realized what she was asking me. “Oh, y-yes, I’m the fairy for Friday. I’m pretty new at this, though. Still getting used to all this…learning, and stuff. I’m getting better, though!”

“Excellent to hear,” my cousin answered back, locking the door back up as I stepped inside. Of course, not much had changed since I’d seen it last Friday; rooms rarely do. Then again, it was Flandre. For all I knew “the system” would dictate that all the bookcases be turned upside down within a week. She’d already moved her desk to the other corner of the room since the first Friday.

“Miss Flandre, it seems Friday’s come to visit us for a while. Would you like me to put on some tea?”

Flandre kept typing at her computer for a while without response, squinting her eyes at the screen. Seems she’d already changed back into her “bedtime” wings for the night. After she finished up her current paragraph, or the level of the video computing game, or whatever it was she did on the computer (I don’t need to remind you how it surpassed my knowledge…then again, I guess I just did), she slid her chair back and looked at the other girl.

“No, no you cannot ’put on’ some tea. What is that even supposed to mean? Are you going to take off your clothes and pour it all over your body; is that what ‘put on’ tea means? Maybe in some depraved back alleys of the world I wouldn’t doubt, but I don’t think this room is very depraved right now, nor has it ever been an alley, and it’s probably not in the back so much as the bottom, and who knows if its even part of the world to begin with. I mean, we’ve got two fairies dressed in pseudo-French maid uniforms and a four hundred eighty-eight old, currently-prepubescent vampire girl who’s writing a list of movie sequels that have misleading numbers or subtitles in them that no one but me cares about anyways; does that sound like a real world to you? So no, you cannot ‘put on’ some tea. But you can go ahead and make some tea for us, if you want. Or maybe you can go brew a pot of tea; those words probably work too. Also, the Rambo series: who’s responsible for that numbering mess?!”

Ahh, Flandre…never a dull moment with her, at least I could always look forward to that. Of course, looking back on it now I find her statements positively hilarious. Back then, though, it was still a struggle to sort of the muddle of words streaming from that fanged mouth of hers. “Tuesday” bowed her head and retired to the kitchen to work on the aforementioned tea. Flandre gave me a lazy, lopsided look.

“You,” she said, pointing a finger at me. “You…are a person I probably remember doing some type of thing with a few times. You may or may not have a name—like I’d remember a name if my life depended on it, but I can’t really die, so yeah—but Tuesday said Friday, so Flandre says Friday. Flandre…Friday…Flyday? Franday? Flanday? Flan Day would be a pretty nice day, come to think of it. Free custard for everyone, you know? We should do that on my next birthday. Four hundred eighty-nine is a stupid number to have an awesome birthday on, though; four hundred ninety five would be way better. Because it’s like you’re five hundred without having to feel old like five hundred! Plus it’s just ninety-nine times five, or thirty-three times fifteen, or eleven times forty-five; those are all pretty good chart sizes. I could have Sakuya bake a special flan for me; I like raspberry ripple. We could make it all pretty and give it a nice name, too. If you’re still around in seven years, would you want to help?

“I think…I think, yes, I’d like that, Miss,” I replied, vaguely aware that she was talking about a birthday ice cream thing of some sort.

“Flandre!” a voice from the kitchen chided. “Please, stop giving her such a hard time! She came here to relax, not to solve your word puzzles!”

“But word puzzles are fun and educational! They’re not a cop out to fill up an elementary school kid’s day with mindless busywork at all! She’ll need to learn all this if she’s gonna go up against Patchy-Patch, you know! As least I use small words!”

Flandre received no response to that, and had none to give, which settles the mood back down to normal; whatever normal was inside that room. I certainly wasn’t going to get “bored” down here tonight, though what I was going to get still made me nervous. But I suppose that’s just life.


[ ] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--( ) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--( ) “Four hundred eighty-eight. That’s…wow, that’s kinda old. What’s it like, living all that time?”
--( ) “Hey, Flandre? You know a lot about Miss Patchouli, right? Is there anything important you could tell me that’d help?”
--( ) (A write-in is fine too…)
[ ] I’d had enough Flan-speak for a while, and ambled over to the kitchen to see how “Tuesday” was doing. And besides, …
--( ) I wanted to ask her about herself. Maybe her story wasn’t all that different from mine?
--( ) I…I just wanted to get a fairy’s perspective on all this sex business. Maybe she could help me understand where Remilia or Patchouli couldn’t.
--( ) I had to know…did she mind being called Tuesday? I thought the first step to recognizing her as someone special for me would be to remember her name…
--( ) (A write-in is fine too…)

Author’s Note: Mixing and matching questions/recipients would probably work, too.
>> No. 31084
[ ] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--( ) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--( ) “Four hundred eighty-eight. That’s…wow, that’s kinda old. What’s it like, living all that time?”
--( ) “Hey, Flandre? You know a lot about Miss Patchouli, right? Is there anything important you could tell me that’d help?”
>> No. 31086
[x] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(x) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
>> No. 31090
>--( ) “Four hundred eighty-eight. That’s…wow, that’s kinda old. What’s it like, living all that time?”
Fairy, remember? Friday probably knows trees older than that.

[X] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(X) “Hey, Flandre? You know a lot about Miss Patchouli, right? Is there anything important you could tell me that’d help?”
>> No. 31091
File 125211538814.jpg - (279.25KB , 800x619 , 4f1a6779b2c2b0462b867471eeb2b74e.jpg ) [iqdb]
31091
>>31083
[X] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(X) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--(X) "Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be helping her."

She finds dealing with Patchy is an adversarial ordeal? She's going to challenge our faculties? I think asking about her choice of words here is a little more interesting than asking about Patchy straight out. Besides, I think Flandre will get a kick out of the notion of our sparring with Meiling.

That said, picking Tuesday's brain is very tempting. However, I'd rather talk to Thursday. It's my favorite day.
>> No. 31092
[X] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(X) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--(X) "Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be helping her."
>> No. 31093
[~] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(z) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--(e) "Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be helping her."

>>31091
That's the best picture of Flandre ever.
>> No. 31094
>>31091

You are a gentleman and a scholar.

[x] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(x) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--(x) "Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be helping her."
>> No. 31100
[X] With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards Flandre’s direction.
--(X) “So…do you mind if I ask what the other fairies who come down here are like?”
--(X) "Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be helping her."
>> No. 31128
8 votes for talking to Flandre

5 votes for asking about the other fairies, then clarification about “going against” Patchouli.
1 vote for asking about the fairies, Patchouli, and Flandre’s past.
1 vote for asking about the other fairies.
1 vote for asking about Patchouli.

The write-in has it, then. Writing now, but my head hurts so probably no update until the morning.

>>31090
>Fairy, remember? Friday probably knows trees older than that.
That’s my fault; I forgot the protagonist has been “embodied” for several centuries herself. I’ll be sure to address that discrepancy in-story sometime soon.

>>31091
>However, I'd rather talk to Thursday. It's my favorite day.
Thursday is…rather unique, in comparison to the rest. Also, that picture~
>> No. 31154
My headache got worse; can't even look at a computer screen for a few minutes without getting dizzy. Update postponed until whenever. I'm sorry.
>> No. 31207
>>31154
Well shit.

Get better soon.
>> No. 31440
You still sick?
>> No. 31443
File 125310023357.jpg - (143.42KB , 480x600 , 30cfbf24bab21fcf9a40fdfc307015ef.jpg ) [iqdb]
31443
No, I got better after a day or two. But right now university is not going nearly like I’d expected it to; this year is feeling head-and-shoulders tougher than other years. At the end of day, if I’m even lucky enough to have free time left, I’d much rather spend it chilling with friends than writing right now. I know it’s selfish of me, but I don’t want to be forced to write if I don’t want to. This is just a extra pastime for me, after all.

TL;DR – A Fairy’s Tale is on indefinite hiatus until my life stops being a bitch. It’s not dead; just resting.
>> No. 31456
File 125314295155.jpg - (24.81KB , 360x254 , parrot.jpg ) [iqdb]
31456
>>31443
>> No. 31546
>I’d much rather spend it chilling with friends than writing right now.

Obligatory "lol friends".

>until my life stops being a bitch.

Life is always a bitch. You need to tame her.
>> No. 32005
Are you still on hiatus? Because I miss this.
>> No. 32007
>>32005
Unfortunately, yes. I really can't find much time to write these days with university classes, work, and friends, and I think my writing quality would suffer a lot if I were to try and keep updating right now. Personally, I'd rather let this story sit for a month or two than force out some subpar update once a week, and I think you would too. It'll be better for it in the long run.

The last thing we need around here is another author on hiatus, I know, but better that than an author who forces herself or himself to update regardless of its quality. I don't want to be one of those.

However, I can promise you two things. First, I will start updating again before the year is out. Second, I will finish the story of A Fairy's Tale before I let it die. Even if I don't have the time right now, I like this story too much to see it fade away without getting finished.
>> No. 32011
>>32007
If that's how it will be, then that's how it will be. Just be sure to post status updates every once in a while so we know you haven't died.

Incidentally, what country do you live in? Can we expect updates for any particular set of holidays?
>> No. 32041
>>32011
I'm in the United States, so Thanksgiving and Christmas are my big vacations. Turkey Day week is usually spent at my internetless grandparent's house, but with any luck it'll give me enough time to write the current update and kick me out of this slump, if I haven't started writing by then already.

I'll let you all know towards the end of the month if my situation has improved or not. Until then, enjoy life, try your hardest, and don't forget to take it easy~
>> No. 32273
Status update: Things are improving, but still haven’t gotten good enough for me to write. I almost managed to start writing again last weekend, but then remembered I had about three homework assignments due the next Monday. I can’t tell if I’ll be able to start writing again before Thanksgiving break or not. Keep your hopes up, but don’t wait for me.

As for the story itself, I’ve got a feeling than even when I do start writing again, I’m going to have to move it along a bit quicker, and do more timeskips than I initially wanted to. It’s not what this story deserves, and I didn’t want for this to happen, but with my free time showing no large signs of improvement in the next several months, it’s either that or move normally and risk never finishing AFT at all. We want that even less, I’m sure.
>> No. 32274
>>32273

;_;
>> No. 32275
>>32273

Try not to do it too much, since a slower story is better than one missing chunks.

Just focus on your homework so when the break time comes, you can write nicely.
>> No. 32277
File 125700507198.jpg - (323.01KB , 800x600 , 7d0343a11b2fb0ac94170061ea356acf.jpg ) [iqdb]
32277
>>32273
I love every post of this story and would read it forever. Don't rush things if it means missing good stuff.
>> No. 32278
>>32277
>Daiyousei
>Fairy tail

I'd chase that fairy's tail, if you know what I mean.
>> No. 32279
>>32275
This.
>> No. 32425
So how goes things on your end Tepes?
>> No. 32445
Too early to tell, but I think I'm making progress. Next week is all break for me, and I’ve got plenty of internet access, though one class in particular gave me a mountain of tedious homework I won’t be looking forward to. I should have a better idea in a few days.

I think the major roadblock isn't going to be getting an update written so much as getting back into the mindset of writing. I’ve been rereading the old threads to reacquaint myself with the characters I’ve written, but it’s going to take a little time to remember just how I wanted AFT to feel. I don’t want to write one or two updates just to burn out within a week.

I’d just like you all to know that I really am trying hard to write again. I keep flipping back and forth about starting up again, but some thing or another always pulls me away right as I’m about to sit down and write. I’m getting close, though, and I think that this time I’ll finally be able to pull through.
>> No. 32520
>>32445

;_;
>> No. 32524
>>32520
Cheer up, emo kid! AFT was only sleeping, just like I said it was! Now can you please tell Dr. McCoy to stop looking at me like that?

I’ve no idea how fast I can get updates out anymore, but I’m starting back up because I’m committed to try, if nothing else. Please wait warmly until I get my muse back in full.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

With “Tuesday” out of the room for a while, I decided to make a query towards…wait, what had Flandre just said again?

"Wait... what do you mean 'going against' Miss Patchouli? I'm not going to have to fight her like I did with China, am I? I thought I would just be, you know, helping her."

The sister’s finger, who had until this point been pointed vaguely in Tuesday’s direction, seemed to now have a mind of its own as to where it wanted to go. Then again, considering who owned the finger in the first place, even its mind couldn’t make up its mind about any direction in particular. In time Flandre regained what she might call “control” of her digit, and started tapping it in the air as she recited a list to me.

“Let’s see, now… Metaphor, simile, sarcasm, figure of speech, parody, satire, a joke, aaaaand, umm… just something people say. One and or all of them probably apply in some way to the phrase “going against”, which I think I just said just a minute ago. Or, fifty seconds ago if you want to nitpick, but that has more syllables and wastes time we have plenty of anyways. And here I go wasting even more syllables. Ehm-fffaaaaa-sis on the wrung sssi-laaaaa-bull.”

After starting at each other in silence for a good three of four breaths, made more awkward by a lot of shifting eyes between us, she added, “No, no you probably won’t have to fight Patches. It’s just something people say. People who don’t know what words to use at the right time. People like me. Yeah, that.”

I bobbed my head and breathed a sigh of relief. It was a silly question—I didn’t expect I’d have to fight Miss Patchouli either—but you just get a little worried about the exact wording of this phrase or that sometimes, no? I did wonder what kind of fight I’d prefer less, though, hypothetically speaking. Fighting China had taught me just how much there is to simply punching someone, but Patchouli, well she’d probably use magic spells that shot fire or lightning or something. How are you supposed to win against that?

Flandre crossed her legs and leaned back in her chair, amusing herself by swiveling around in circles for a while. Looked pretty fun to me, though I couldn’t read her face to see if she felt the same. She’d probably just respond with “It’s just something people do ‘cause they’re bored”, followed by three or four more sentences that probably meant more than they needed to.

“So, you had to fight China, then?” she asked me. “How’d that go for ya?”

“Oh, I… I, not so well. I lost real, real fast.” I hung my head to cover my reddening cheeks.

“Yeah, so did I, probably. She’s always telling me I move way too much and throw myself so out of balance she doesn’t even need to hit me to make me fall over. Personally, you know?” She lowered her voice and motioned for me to turn my ear to her. “I think it’s just ‘cause my style isn’t wrong, it’s just I’m so unpredictable she doesn’t know the right way to fix it, ‘cause it’s not broken.” She looked pretty confident in herself as she said that; couldn’t tell if it was true or not, though.

She shrugged and added, “It’s not her fault, though; most of her fighting philosophy goes right out the window when you’re are strong as we are. Humans fight like humans, because they’re strong as humans. Meiling fights like a human, ‘cause she used to be one, ‘cept she’s stronger than one. Remi fights like Remi, because she’s as strong as Remi. I’m… not really sure what I fight like yet. An idiot running with scissors, probably. Scissors that beats Rock, even. Here, I’ll show ya.”

Jumping out of her seat, she skipped over to one of her storage cabinets and rummaged around for something. As I walked over to look, she popped back out with a large piece of metal grasped in both hands.

“This here,” she explained to me like a salesman, “it’s a five-centimeter thick plate of high carbon steel. They make swords out of this stuff. This thing’ll stop bullets just like that. But I bet that if I head-butt it just so, I can snap it in half, because I’m just that good! Meiling says the trick is to aim past the board and force yourself to think the plate doesn’t matter, or something. ‘Cept that’s with wood.”

I really had no idea just what Flandre was trying to prove here, except that she still had very little common sense. Five centimeters thick? Even for the superhuman Flandre, wasn’t that a bit much? I doubted she’d have gotten hurt much if she failed, but I still asked her if this was the smartest thing to be trying.

“Smart?” she asked me back. “No, probably not. But I’m not that smart, and this is way cooler than smart anyways, so it’s fine. I’m allowed to do stuff like this. Just watch; I’ma gonna do it!”

Bracing her feet on the ground with her arms held rigidly in front of her, she lightly tapped the steel with her forehead as if challenging it or something. I had a rather puzzled, almost disgusted look on my face. I was…supposed to stop stuff like this, right? Or was I? After all, this wasn’t like the lettuce incident where Flandre’s absurdity couldn’t have actually hurt other people, but still…

As Flandre rocked her head back and forth, preparing to strike, Tuesday came walking back into the room with a silver tray of tea and cookies. The fairy looked at the vampire skeptically and cocked her head to the side, her face asking Flandre, “Really, now?” Flandre’s mouth puckered up into a surprised little pout for a while before her wings drooped down and she looked as me dejectedly.

“Okay, yeah, that was a lie. See, the plate is already split in half; Patch did it for me. It’s supposed to be a magic trick or somethin’. Or a scam for grifting money. Magic trick demeans the word, so sayeth Empress Patchouli of the Seven Tomes. I just make that nice title up just about three seconds ago. Also grift is a stupid word.”

That only served to make me even more confused. I could definitely see now that, yes, the steel was already pre-split, and it was just her way of holding it that hid the crack. But then what was the point? To impress me? I was already plenty impressed at Flandre’s power already. To entertain me? I couldn’t really see how that’d work. And what did “grift” mean, anyways?

Putting the plate back into storage for the moment, Flandre sat down in a circle with us two fairies as we shared a much better tea than I knew how to make; the cookies were excellent too, little chocolate-frosted pastries with some kind of fruit filling.

“I told you you should really stop with that trick, Flandre,” Tuesday remarked between sips. “Not many fairies are liable to get it.”

“Monday was pretty impressed with it, you know,” the girl answered back, shifting the cookies around on the try to make a smiling face.

“Monday is…easily excitable, Flan. I talked with her afterwards; she took it less well than you might have expected. Did you notice how jittery she was the week after?”

“Sunday was pretty impressed with it, you know.”

“True, but she can’t detect sleight of hand to save her soul, and you know it, Miss.”

“Friday was pretty impressed with it, you know.”

Tuesday looked at me lovingly, then back to Flandre, who looked lazily at me before having a starting contest of sorts with Tuesday, which the vampire lost.

“I’m not allowed to talk anymore, am I?” she asked atonally, setting her cookie back down.

Tuesday sighed as she held back a pleasant smile. “That decision is entire up to you, My Lady. I am not your master; you are mine.”

A simple “Meh” was all Flandre responded with, and the atmosphere in the room returned back to a very easygoing teaside chat. Since the conversation had moved that way, I took the opportunity to ask them more about “The Seven”, being one of them myself.

“So, umm… You’ve both been talking about the other fairies who work down here; just what are they like? I don’t think I’ve ever met them around the house, or I probably don’t remember them at least. I’m not very good at that, you know.”

“That’s right; we haven’t gotten around to introducing you to the team yet,” Tuesday replied. “I must apologize for that; we try to keep communication open between us seven, but not all of us were quite sure about who you were, or where to find you for that matter. Not to mention,” she added, glancing at Flandre, “The little Miss here was playing mum about the whole thing.”

“I thought it’d be funny! Or at least mildly amusing, mildly challenging, or mildly spicy. Mildly spicy always felt like an oxymoron to me…”

“That’s not the point right now, though,” the maid continued, graciously talking through Flandre’s musings about salsa and chili peppers. “Really quite fortunate that you should come by tonight; it’ll save Sakuya some time, and heaven knows she needs it. So you wanted to know more about us? Where’d you like me to start?”

Scratching my head, I really didn’t have a good answer. Did I want to know more about Tuesday herself, or ask about the one’s they’d already mentioned, or which ones I’d get along with the best and which ones I wouldn’t?

“I think, umm… Maybe just start with Sunday and go in order?” I suggested meekly. “I mean, that way it won’t be confusing, right?”

Tuesday nodded in assurance as she tipped the teapot into my empty cup. Suddenly Flandre, whom I could have sworn was still muttering about some town called “Scoville” not a half-second ago, started rattling off a list which I took to be the abridged-abridged version of what Tuesday was probably planning to tell me.

“Sunday’s the China-clone, Monday’s the scaredy-cat, Tuesday’s the fairy mom, Wednesday’s the buzzkill, Thursday’s whatever the hell she wants to be, Friday’s the new kid, and Saturday’s the half-vampire. Weekends and Tuesday-Thursday are the awesome ones.”

“Mmm…did you catch any of that?” my cousin asked me.

Did I? It was fast, and yet… surprisingly simple when put like that. China-clone? Half-vampire? Buzzkill? It’d be a lie to say I didn’t understand those terms at all, but they were just vague enough for my mind to start making all manner of wild and awful assumptions. Was she a literal clone, or just looked like her? If Saturday was a half-vampire, what was the other half, and which half was which? What was Thursday supposed to be at all, for that matter?

But I’m sure you’re asking yourself the same manner of questions right now, so I shan’t tarry in my tale.

“Y…Y-yes? I think, some of it, maybe. Was that just real, then, or just a joke?”

“Life’s all a big joke anyways, kid” Flandre butted in, flipping a cookie in the air like a coin. “Or at least that’s—“

“Flan.” Tuesday folded her arms in front of her, disappointment etched lightly but definitely upon her face. “Please, not now. It’ll make it easier for her in the long run if she knows a few of her co-workers down here.” Turning back to me, she continued her original conversation.

“Miss Flandre’s explanation was quite tactlessly simplified, but for the most part true. For that matter, there really isn’t a lot I could, or should, add to it that one of the maids themselves couldn’t explain better. If you’d like, perhaps we could, hmm…yes, yes, I believe it wouldn’t be too hard to track some of them down tonight. Care to meet some of the others, Miss Friday?”


[ ] Choose the top three of the Seven (excluding Friday of course) you’d like to try and meet tonight. Votes for Tuesday simply means more interaction then you’ve already had with her.
>> No. 32526
>AFT update
Today is a good day.

In order of preference:
[X] Thursday
She's apparently 'awesome', and the lack of cogent description entices me.
[X] Saturday
Half-vampire? Literally? Also an 'awesome' choice.
[X] Wednesday
Anyone who can kill Flandre's buzz must be interesting, and it's a skill Friday could stand to learn besides.
>> No. 32527
[x] Thursday
[x] Saturday
[x] Sunday

I am a happy person.
>> No. 32528
File 125912566427.png - (79.50KB , 249x424 , 125890060985.png ) [iqdb]
32528
FUCK YEAH

[x] Sunday
[x] Wednesday
[x] Thursday

Don't care about Monday, and I somehow get the feeling we should leave Saturday for later. Almost want to vote for Tuesday, she's surprisingly bright and confident for a fairy and I like her. Definitely a good source of wisdom and support here.
>> No. 32529
[x] Thursday
[x] Saturday
[x] Wednesday

Good to see you back dude.
>> No. 32530
[x] Thursday
[x] Saturday
[x] Wednesday
>> No. 32532
[0] Thursday
[1] Saturday
[2] Wednesday

Hooooly fuck, it's been a long time.
>> No. 32534
[x] Thursday
[x] Saturday
[x] Wednesday
>> No. 32535
[c] Thursday
[c] Saturday
[c] Wednesday
>> No. 32538
8 votes for Thursday
7 votes for Saturday
7 votes for Wednesday
2 votes for Sunday

No contest, then. Writing now, but It’ll be better if I introduce the girls at a reasonable speed, so you might not see your votes’ result immediately. All good things to those who wait, though~
>> No. 32544
>>32538

Will we meet the other fairies eventually?
>> No. 32545
It's back! Hooray!
>> No. 32575
I bit my lip. “Ohh, I, I wouldn’t want to be a bother; I’m sure you all have plans and such. I really just wanted to know a little more, is all.”

“Come now, there’s no need to be so modest,” Tuesday replied, standing up and offering her hand for me to do the same. “Please, don’t treat us special because we’ve been down here longer; all we’re doing is what Remilia asked us to do, just like you. That’s the thing about being a maid: we’re all equals amongst each other. I won’t take no for an answer. Come, there must be at least one of us you like to get to know better.”

Seems there was no way out of it. I really didn’t like being treated differently, but I suppose, yet again, that’s what you get for being more responsible. And if I had to choose anyways, then…

“Th-umm, Miss Thursday, then. I really didn’t understand what Flandre meant by the ‘whatever she wants to be’ part. And, I guess, Miss Wednesday and Miss Saturday too, if they’re around. But I’d really just be fine with one—ow!”

A flying crumb of chocolate cookie abruptly seemed to think my forehead was in the way of it’s escape to freedom in the sky above, and cut me off mid-sentence. Flandre—whom I could only assume was the logical culprit—had her hand extended at the time, pretending to clean her fingernails.

“It’s funny, you know?” she commented offhandedly. “My fingers keep telling me that overly modest people need to be less serious and live life as it comes to them. I don’t know why; they just wasted a perfectly good four-seventeenths of a cookie. I was gonna eat that cookie too, and now I’m all sad and stuff. Forgive me while I throw an immature temper tantrum, get Sakuya involved, have Remi rock me to sleep after we both cry into each others arms about the good old days which weren’t that good in retrospect, and wake up tomorrow wishing I hadn’t wasted a perfectly good evening.”

A sigh escaped from Tuesday’s lips as she shook her head and turned for the door, ushering me to follow. “She just wants attention; when she talks like that, she’s not being serious—“

“Lies! All lies!”

“—She’s just trying to be funny. If you ask me, she’s funniest when she doesn’t try. Come on, I’ve a feeling I know right where to find Wendy. We can start there.”

“But, umm…” Now just what was it that Sakuya had told me about leaving the room again? “Don’t we have to bring Flandre with us? That’s what Sakuya told me.”

“And quite good of you to remember that, as well,” she told me, giving me a little pat on the shoulder. “But Flandre’s in a good enough mood tonight for her to survive a few minutes alone, aren’t you, Flan?”

“I am the father of my own god! I have a really bad headache! Yippie-ki-yay!”

Tuesday nodded with satisfaction as she unlocked the room’s door. “She’s fine.”

+ + + + + + + + + +

Wednesday, or “Wendy” as her nickname seemed to be, was one of the lucky ones who lived on the fourth floor. I’d always wanted to live there instead of that cold, stuffy basement. The rooms were bigger, there were windows, and it was so much warmer up there. I forgot if Sakuya had ever said anything about switching rooms, but once again I could only assume it had something to do with seniority, and there were dozens of my cousins with more of that than me.

Tuesday tapped on one of the room doors near the spiral staircase. A mumbled mention of “S’open” emanated from the other side of the door, and Tuesday stepped inside. The room really didn’t look much different from mine, to tell you the truth. Still very plain walls and bland furnishings, though there were two separate beds rather than a triple bunk, and as I mentioned earlier the room was more spacious. A window, though… Ooh, I would have traded my room for one half its size in a heartbeat if I could have had a window in it. It was half-open at the time, letting the evening breeze waft its way around the quarters.

A single fairy sat on the bed closet the window, a book in her lap and her dark eyes focused intently on the words held within. Dark eyes… Now that wasn’t something I normally saw on a fairy. Lots of blues and greens, and plenty of what you’d call “unnatural” colors like pink and gold, but that sort of dull brown hardly came up at all. It was more of a surprise to me that her hair was even darker, a deep chocolate tone that bordered on black in the right light. Even her skin was deeply tanned, a good deal moreso than my own peachy-pink. Must’ve been from the mountains, I reckoned, and her angular wings seemed to confirm it, looking much more like sheets of thin crystal than the more common dragonfly-like wings most of us fairies shared.

Personally, I cared less that she wasn’t wearing any clothes (Now that I knew what that was all about, at least), and more that she didn’t greet us or stand up or act like we were in her room at all. She had to have known, obviously, since she let us in, but from the time Tuesday and I walked in to the time we were both standing by her bedside, she didn’t once look up.

“Good evening, Wendy,” Tuesday greeted cordially.

“Wednesday,” she replied. Even her voice seemed darker than normal for a fairy. I could compare it to Miss Patchouli’s I suppose, with the main difference being Patchouli sounded like she cared too much about too many things, whereas Wednesday just sounded like she barely cared at all.

“Very well, Wednesday. I was lucky enough to bump into our little lost seventh. Miss Friday, meet Miss Wednesday.”

I curtsied in front of her respectfully. “It’s very nice to me you, Ms. Wednesday. I hope we can get to know each other better, working with Lady Flandre and all.”

“A pleasure, I’m sure.” How... odd, I’d have to say. She sounded polite enough, but it was just the way she didn’t focus on me whilst talking that felt very off-putting.

“Wednesday, dear…” Tuesday gently placed her hand over the book, getting Wednesday to look her in the eyes. “Can you please just not be yourself for one evening?”

Setting her book on the pillow as she crossed her legs, the dark-eyed fairy pushed a patch of hair out of her eyes and back behind her ear. “I am only who I am. I can’t be anyone else. It’s me; this is what I do. So, did you need something?”

“In a roundabout way. Friday’d like to meet a few of the rest of us. Do you by any chance know where Thursday and Saturday are?”

“Thursday’s in the orchard. Saturday’s… out.”

“Out?”

“She’s hunting outside the walls. The Mistress is, as usual, allowing it. Is this a problem?”

My guide rubbed her chin, no doubt thinking about whatever “hunting” meant in that context, but ended up just saying, “No, not particularly. Do you know when she’ll be back?”

Wednesday shrugged. “I’m not her, obviously, so I wouldn’t know. I can only assume you’re about to ask if I can show our cousin around and introduce her to them, correct?”

“If you wouldn’t mind. In either case, I really do need to get back to Miss Flandre; can never trust that woman completely even at the best of times.”

“Perhaps if you were less like yourself and more like me, that wouldn’t be as much of a problem,” Wednesday suggested as she stood up and moved to her closet for some clothes.

“Nnnhh… Ehh, your personality works for you, Wednesday. It just doesn’t work for me. No offense.”

“My point exactly. Good night, cousin.”

Telling me not to worry, and that I was in good hands even if Wendy didn’t seem very nice, Tuesday bid me a good evening and left the room to get back to our mutual charge. The sullen fairy had finished dressing herself, and even from my perspective as I am now I’m not sure if I thought it improved her stature of not. Pants; that was the big difference. I don’t think I’d ever remembered seeing a fairy wear pants before, and hers were a shade of olive green that brought back memories of aged loam and moss from surface caves. That earthy vest seemed to do the same thing for that matter, which made me wonder if she’d come from some deep forest rather than the mountains. She was definitely a fairy, not the slightest doubt there, but I couldn’t quite tell if she’d gotten the strange way she was before she came to the mansion, or after.

[ ] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
[ ] I couldn’t resist just asking her, my curiosity thus piqued. “So, umm… Where are you from? Before you came here, I mean?”
[ ] Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”
[ ] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[ ] “Not to be all nosy, Cousin Wednesday, but… what did you mean when you said Saturday was hunting?”

Author’s Note: You’ll probably end up at the orchard eventually, but choosing other non-orchard options will just delay the move an update or two.

And yes, you’ll end up meeting all six of Flandre’s other maids in the long run. It’s just a matter of who comes when.

>> No. 32576
[X] EVERYTHING

[X] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[X] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32577
{“Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.}
{I couldn’t resist just asking her, my curiosity thus piqued. “So, umm… Where are you from? Before you came here, I mean?”}
{Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”}
>> No. 32579
[X] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[X] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32580
[ ] Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”
[ ] “Not to be all nosy, Cousin Wednesday, but… what did you mean when you said Saturday was hunting?”

A fairy? Hunting? Unbelievable
>> No. 32581
[X] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[X] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32582
[x] Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”
[x] “Not to be all nosy, Cousin Wednesday, but… what did you mean when you said Saturday was hunting?”
>> No. 32583
[0] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[1] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32584
{“Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.}
{I couldn’t resist just asking her, my curiosity thus piqued. “So, umm… Where are you from? Before you came here, I mean?”}
{Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”}

Sure.
>> No. 32585
[X] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[X] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32589
[x] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”

And on the way:
[x] I couldn’t resist just asking her, my curiosity thus piqued. “So, umm… Where are you from? Before you came here, I mean?”
[x] “Not to be all nosy, Cousin Wednesday, but… what did you mean when you said Saturday was hunting?”
>> No. 32593
{“Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.}
{I couldn’t resist just asking her, my curiosity thus piqued. “So, umm… Where are you from? Before you came here, I mean?”}
{Trying to break the ice a little, I asked her a question we could both relate to. “So, I guess, do you mind if I ask you what you think of Miss Flandre?”}
>> No. 32594
[X] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[X] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32597
[B] “Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.
[B] “Well, I guess we should get started, then. You said Ms. Thursday was in the orchard, right?”
>> No. 32602
7 votes for option 4 then 1.
3 votes for option 4 then 2 then 3.
2 votes for option 2 then 5.
1 vote for option 1 then 2 then 5.

Even if I split them up into their individual components, 4 and 1 are still winning, so I’ll go with them (asking about the book, then the orchard). I’ll be writing during the car ride back to the university (hopefully), so update tomorrow night.

>>32580
Not when you consider who it is.
>> No. 32637
“Uhh, what were you reading over there?” I asked, pointing to her book.

In response, she picked the book back up and set it face-forwards on the room’s table, saying nothing, and then returned to her closet. I bent over closer to read the title, and scratched my head as I voiced it aloud.

“Merriam…Web-ster’s, Collie-gee-ate Dictshunary? But, this is just, what words mean and stuff, right?”

“Indeed.”

I stuck my tongue out as I flipped though a few pages. So many words, so many teeny-tiny words… how could Wendy stand squinting so hard at this? At least there were some pictures to preserve one’s sanity; I might not have minded just reading the picture captions for a while, if I absolutely had to.

“So you, umm, you like to read stuff like this, Miss Wednesday?” I really didn’t know what else to say; is there anything appropriate to say to a person reading a dictionary?

She shrugged as she slid a rather cold-looking stone knife into a small pocket in her pants. “Not particularly. It passes the time, and keeps me informed of the world we live in. Would you prefer to visit the orchard later, or earlier?”

“Oh, mmm, earlier, I guess. We could go now if you want, I was just trying to… talk, I suppose.” I tried not to eye that knife overly much, but it just kept bringing back bad memories of that first night, and how I actually owned a weapon of the sort myself (not that I’d ever use it!). But just what was she intending on needing it for, anyways? As an insignificant point, I suppose I was at least a little pleased that it looked like she’d made the knife herself, and out of stone rather than iron or steel.

After closing up her room and making the spiraling journey down to the ground, it seems I’d looked at her knife one time too many, and she brought it up as we pushed the door open into the night air.

“You find something disconcerting about my knife?” she asked.

“I, n-no, wait… What does disconcertering mean again?”

“Disconcerting, and it means uneasiness or dismay.”

“Oh, then I guess, m-maybe a little. I was just wondering why… why you have it, is all.”

Rather than answering me right away, she observed the night life around the lawn, as I did the same. Ahh, nighttimes at the mansion; the simple pleasures of life one treasures so much. For those of us who could resist the allure of indoor entertainment (which were plenty), Remilia’s lands became our playground until hours of the night when humans had long-since gone to bed. The hedge-maze was an endless source of entertainment for games of stealth and simple races, the exits leading outwards to a paved loop around the small pond and gazebo behind the mansion. Everything we all worked so hard to keep perfect for Lady Remilia’s pleasure, from the uniform green-green grass, to the gardens and flower plots, to the cloistered orchard, all that we gave to it in the daytime repaid us back in full when our day’s work was done.

I could see dozens of fairy’s wings twinkling like stars in the sky above us, no doubt enjoying the freedom of three dimensions which no hall or spacious room indoors could provide. Such a joy, to fly… I do feel sorry for you humans, that you were not given such a wonderful gift as wings, something us fairies have taken for granted far too often. You grow up with it, you get used to it, and then… you forget what it’d be like to live without it. I know how much you wish to wander about the air, I really do, and I don’t fault you for it. Aero-planes, sky-diving, hang-gliding, even your ever-evolving roller coasters are a testament to your quest. They come close, so I’ve heard, but nothing so perfect as what I and my kin have been given. To move with true freedom…that is a gift I think only magic will ever be able to give.

The night was too perfect, the air too enticing for me to resist, and soon I shot off to be amongst an ebbing, flowing throng of my kin, dancing and spinning about the air like flakes in a snow globe. I had no idea what game I’d suddenly found myself in, or if there were even rules, but I couldn’t have cared less. These were my friends, my family, sisters and cousins and nieces and aunts. Out here, away from Remilia’s orders and Sakuya’s job board, Flandre’s “system” and Patchouli’s organization, we were fairies, not maids. We were ourselves.

Time passed, and eventually I spun out of the cloud of giggling girls, almost crashing straight into Wednesday, who’d taken a seat on top of the mansion’s red roof. No smile was or her face, but she looked… content. At peace with herself. I suppose for a serious soul like her that was as good as she’d get.

“Enjoying yourself, Cousin Friday?” she asked me.

“Wendy, come on! Join on in, put a smile on that straight face!” I’ll admit I was a little too energized from my flight to talk in a more intelligent manner, but any fairy should be able to find it in their hearts to enjoy the company of their family, no?

She gave her head a little half-shake. “I’m afraid not. Large crowds and loud games have never really given me the enjoyment that it’s given my fellow kin.”

“Don’t talk like that; no wonder everyone thinks you’re so boring! It can’t hurt ya’ to have a little excitement every now and again, hmm?”

“Again, I’ll pass. And you perhaps forget yourself; did you not want to meet Thursday yet tonight?”

“Oh, ye-yeah! Sorry ‘bout that, I was just taking a little break. Lead the way, Wendy.”

“Wednesday.”

Together we flew over to the orchard next to the grounds wall. It was a dense place, not overly large but certainly something you might get lost in for a spell if you couldn’t fly. That orchard of all places within Lady Remilia’s little world felt the closest to home. The trees followed no real order of rows or type; China had told me it was the one thing Remilia had never really tried to cultivate. A haven for the fairies, a place to forget all the bad of the world. We set down and walked into the trees, Wednesday starting another conversation with something I didn’t really understand.

“A memento.”

“I’m sorry?”

“You asked why I keep this knife. It is a memento of the past. It reminds me of where I come from… who I am.”

I frowned. “That doesn’t sound like a very nice memory to me, if it’s of a knife. I don’t… like, knives.”

“Mmm, perhaps. But that is you. And if I am not mistaken, you were a wandering fey, were you not?”

“I guess, more or less.” I’ve never really called myself any particular type of fairy—not an Earth Fairy or a Forest Fairy or anything like that—but I suppose a “wandering” fairy wouldn’t be too far away from what I was. Never really stayed in one place too much; I’d always been too curious about other places.

“That is our difference, then,” she continued, patting a nearby apple tree. “I was… am, a protector.”

That word… it threw up a little flag in my head. “Protector? That would be—“

“—a conversation for another time, perhaps,” she interrupted, turning her back to me. “Come; Thursday won’t make it easy for us to find her.”

A protector fairy. The kind that, rather than moving about from region to region, or even within the same area, took one spot for their own, and committed their very essence to it. You’ve heard of other tales, no? Stories of guardian spirits of a forest or a mountain? It is their charge, their responsibility, and they are as much a part of that land as your hand is a part of you. It wasn’t uncommon; many spirits from before their embodiment into physical form ingrained themselves into an area so much, part of them never left it even after the fact. But if Wednesday was here in the mansion rather than outside somewhere else, protecting what she was supposed to protect, that could only mean…

Mmm… I saw why Wednesday didn’t want to talk about it.

“What do you mean, she won’t make it easy?” I wondered aloud as I jogged to catch up with her.

“Not intentionally, but it amounts to the same,” she answered back, looking into the branches above her. “Thursday is a rather slippery soul; she’s spent many of her physical years testing the limits of her body. In recent decades, she’s managed to alter it considerably, almost impossibly. In human form she can look like practically anything the wishes; I rarely see her look exactly the same twice. That is, of course, when she isn’t attempting to shape herself into a cloud of butterflies or a flock of birds. I’ve asked her about her methods, but she can be rather… cryptic, at times. Our Lady Flandre positively adores her for that.”

“Wait, change shape? We can… do that? But how?”

“I suggest you ask her yourself when we find her, if we do, and if she doesn’t find us first. Her abilities have turned her into quite the prankster, I am afraid. Not a good influence on Miss Flandre at all. If you have a good idea, by all means, suggest it.”

[ ] I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me. (Suggest talking points if you wish)
[ ] Well, if Thursday meant to play some kind of prank on us eventually, wouldn’t it just be easier to wait in one spot and have her come to us? It’s give me and Wendy more time to talk, anyways. (Suggest talking points if you wish)
[ ] Splitting up would work, right? I mean, this wasn’t some movie where getting caught alone by Thursday was a bad thing, right?
>> No. 32640
[x] I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me.
-[x] Ask why she felt like reading those books.
-[x] Inquire on how she might get along with Miss Knowledge, since she also likes books.
>> No. 32641
[x] I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me.
-[x] Ask why she felt like reading those books.
-[x] Inquire on how she might get along with Miss Knowledge, since she also likes books.
>> No. 32644
{I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me.
- {Ask why she felt like reading those books.}
- {Inquire on how she might get along with Miss Knowledge, since she also likes books.}}
>> No. 32657
[B] I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me.
-[b] Ask why she felt like reading those books.
-[b] Inquire on how she might get along with Miss Knowledge, since she also likes books.
>> No. 32658
[x] I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me.
-[x] Ask why she felt like reading those books.
-[x] Inquire on how she might get along with Miss Knowledge, since she also likes books.

This works for me.
>> No. 32690
I had ideas, I suppose, but none of them seemed really good. Walking and looking just like this seemed perfectly fine to me. Unless by “a good idea” she was referring to a way to stop Thursday from pulling pranks, but I wouldn’t have had a clue about that either. Considering how confused I was about a simple sleight-of-hand a scant half-hour ago, stopping a prankster outright might as well have been impossible for me. I wondered if maybe Thursday was the person who taught Flandre that trick in the first place.

The orchard felt very serene that night to me. Perhaps it was only because I’d been cooped up inside Patchouli’s room all day and anything outdoors was an amazing breath of fresh air, but I enjoyed it regardless. A cousin here or there caught my eye, either taking a nap in the comforting boughs above us or half-skipping half-flying from branch to branch like a monkey, but the coolness of the trees remained regardless. If I concentrated I could just barely hear the trees whispering to each other, though of course words would have been impossible to make out. Trees have ever had a much different language from us fairies, even during the days when we lived every day side by side. Still, it was enough to know that they were alive and awake as we walked through their shade.

“So, umm… If Ms. Thursday can change herself or whatever, how do I know what to look for?” I asked, thinking it a rather valid question considering.

“Something out of the ordinary,” Wendy answered back emotionlessly. “Thursday positively hates conformity, and her shape experiments show it. If she’s in human form, she won’t look like any humanlike creature you’ve seen before. If she’s not, then obviously you know you have found her.” Kneeling down on the ground and craning her neck at something far away, she added, “She also likes to whisper to herself. Our little lady’s rubbed off on her a bit, so I’ve heard.”

I shivered a little. From what I’d heard so far, Thursday seemed like some kind of fairy version of Flandre or something. To think that someone who’d started out just like me would grow and change that much… I wondered how long she’d been Flandre’s ward, and how far away I was from becoming the same… Then again, I knew then just as I know now that I worry too much. Tuesday had to have been just as long in serving Flandre if she considered her one of the “awesome” ones, and she was just as nice as Miss China was. Nicer, even, since she was a fairy just like me, and someone I could relate to.

Trying to bring the topic to something a little more comprehendible to me, I asked Wednesday, “So, can I ask why you were reading that dictionary or whatever? I mean, if you want to pass the time aren’t there more fun things to read?”

“I do not consider humans’ fiction to be ‘fun’, Miss Friday. Fact is more than enlightening enough for me.” Her voice definitely had a little edge to it; seems I’d accidentally stumbled upon yet another sore subject. Looking on the situation now, of course, I’d have let that be that. But as I was back then, well… I still thought talking kindly would solve any problem.

“Fact, huh? Well, humm, why not an ‘cyclopedia? Don’t they like to explain things a lot better?”

“But I did not feel like reading an encyclopedia tonight. There is very rarely a reason why I should read something with my spare time that I do not feel like reading on a given evening. Will you be continuing to ask me such trivial questions?”

“I, umm, oh, I guess…not…” That direct tone of hers felt so cold, coming from a cousin. I’d accept it from, say, Ms. Patchouli, but from my peer it just felt weird. Once again I still couldn’t keep well enough alone, and asked another question. Not without some reservation this time, though.

“Do you… get along with Miss Knowledge all right, then? I mean, since you both like books and all. That doesn’t count as trivial…right?”

Wendy sighed and stopped looking at me, the both of us continuing our search in relative silence. She’d stopped being miffed at me, thank goodness, but I didn’t really feel like she felt any better about it.

“Dr. Knowledge and I do… not see eye to eye,” she said, her voice as dark as her eyes.

“Oh? That’s, well, oh, that’s too bad.”

“Indeed.”

Another long pause between the two of us. I inquired further. “Do you mind if I ask why?”

“Difference of opinions. Vast, difference of opinions. She is young, young and curious. Far too curious than is good for a child. She probes too far into matters which do not concern her. She oversteps her bounds and crosses lines she does not even know she crosses. She honors little and disrespects much; hardly anything is sacred to her. All the atrocities she commits she does in the name of her ‘science’, with the assumption that it exempts her from her just retribution. She does not learn from her mistakes and does not leave well enough alone. For her sake and ours, I hope many of her experiments do not succeed.”

The way she explained all that to me, even with that monotone of a voice she always managed to speak with… I knew she must have felt strongly about this. I’ve said before how not all fairies exactly enjoyed what Patchouli experimented on. Usually it was just that plain old fear of the unknown which everyone has, humans and fairies and anything with a soul alike. But for the few here and there which could actually understand what Patchouli was doing in her private rooms… Well, I’ve said before that there’s a reason why the good doctor had trouble finding volunteers to help her. I suppose she was fortunate that I was trying to be braver in those days, and not letting my own muddled opinions get in the way.

I swallowed back my embarrassment and muttered. “S-sorry I asked… was just curious, I s’pose.”

“There is nothing wrong with being curious,” my cousin answered. “But there may be much wrong with investigating. Our doctor simply has not taken this to heart, in my opinion. Make of it what you will; I’m not here to change your views of the world.”

I thought I might have started to see why Flandre called Wendy “the buzzkill”. I didn’t know the term perfectly, but a buzz was something like being all full of energy, yes? And the way Wednesday talked certainly felt like it was draining all the energy out of me, all right. I’d already forgotten about my joyous time in the air, replaced with this gloomy talk of Patchouli being a bad woman. Young, even… I found it sort of funny. The librarian had to have been, what eighty years old, ninety? That’s plenty venerable and wise by human standards, and yet Wendy was calling her a child. We were older than her by centuries—I knew that—but frankly it never really felt like it. The time we spent outside of Remilia’s walls felt like a different world, a different life than what we had here. As if life in the world of humans went by a different calendar than life outside of it. Just another thing I’ll never be able to fully explain to you on paper, I suppose.

Eventually our wandering conversation brought us to a rather familiar cabin towards the far edge of the trees. It had really never served any “practical” purpose as a guesthouse or even a storehouse—it didn’t even have commodities like electricity or running water—and yet here it stood, strong and old. Sakuya had once said that Remilia’d had it built as sort of a “weekend retreat” where she could go and forget about the present-day world for a while. As crazy as it sounded for our elegant and prim mistress to enjoy that sort of thing, I could only expect that even the very great in the world needed simple escapes every now and again. And besides, it was a large enough building to be a mansion of a cabin when stood up against the regular one-room abodes, so I suppose even in simplicity Remilia still liked her extravagance. An oxymoron perhaps, yes?

Though none of our superiors had ever said the cabin was off-limits, most of us stayed away from it anyways, more pertinent things usually on our mind than searching into a boring building. Wendy made some comment about how that particular quality was something that appealed to Thursday, and figured it was as decent a place as any to look as our search in the trees had yielded nothing. The interior was frighteningly dark and musty, and the two-story great room we entered into really made me feel like I was stepping into some cave’s antechamber. A pair of candles between us cheered up the atmosphere a little, the dancing flame a welcome companion in my search for this elusive deviant fairy.

[ ] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
[ ] As I was already there and didn’t exactly feel like snooping about too much, I volunteered to check around the first floor.
[ ] Thinking it’d be a good hiding spot, I volunteered to check around the basement.
[ ] Not particularly enjoying the darkness, I wondered if maybe Thursday was actually somewhere outside the cabin, but still near it.

Author’s Note: All roads lead to Thursday by next update. The question is HOW they lead there.
>> No. 32691
[x] Thinking it’d be a good hiding spot, I volunteered to check around the basement.

Sounds like a good prank.
>> No. 32692
[X] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
>> No. 32697
[ ] Not particularly enjoying the darkness, I wondered if maybe Thursday was actually somewhere outside the cabin, but still near it.
>> No. 32698
{Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.}
>> No. 32699
[ ] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
>> No. 32703
[x] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
>> No. 32704
[B] As I was already there and didn’t exactly feel like snooping about too much, I volunteered to check around the first floor.
>> No. 32708
[x] Thinking it’d be a good hiding spot, I volunteered to check around the basement.
>> No. 32715
[ℤℯ] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
>> No. 32727
[0] Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor.
>> No. 32768
7 for the 2nd floor
2 for the basement
1 for outside

Sorry for the delay; very rough week. Next week probably won't be much better, but at least writing'll keep me sane. To the second floor then; writing nowish.

Also, >>/gensokyo/3176 was pretty cool to see. It's awesome to know that my Flandre's made some impression on THP outside of just /sdm/.
>> No. 32802
Wondering if Thursday’d perhaps sought out some empty bedroom, I volunteered to check around the second floor. She nodded and told me she’d scope out the basement; both places seemed pretty likely to me, being all mysterious and out of the way (not like this cabin wasn’t already).

“Don’t zone out, now,” Wednesday added as we started to go our separate ways. “If she finds you before you find her, she’ll take every advantage she can get.”

“You make it sound like she’s trying to attack me or something, Wendy. I just want to meet her, s’all.”

“As you wish… And it’s Wednesday.”

Allowing that name-conscious cousin of mine to vanish curtly into a hallway, I put a better grip on my candle and started padding around the cabin, looking for some stairs. It really did seem like a nice place, even with all that gloom about me; I could definitely feel something in my being stir there. Probably not magic so much as a… lack of non-magic, I suppose. No electricity or plumbing or even much metal, it seemed. Natural. Just a big, old, natural log cabin.

I wandered away from the great room into some side room—a den perhaps—and from there I spotted a stout stair-rail and wide steps upwards. Flying myself up to the second floor, I decided to try some kind of logical approach, I guess you’d call it. Normally I’d probably have just opened a door and peeked around a little before assuming there was nothing there, but a few past experiences had told me that hiding things liked to hide, and Thursday definitely sounded like a hider. Remembering a story about how a blind person managed to get out of a maze by touch, I placed my left hand on the nearest wall and started to trace a path through the rooms.

As I searched through the first bedroom I found, I really couldn’t stop thinking about how silly this all felt. Wednesday was talking about all this hiding and seeking like it was some kind of horror movie, like I was supposed to be scared for my life as the intrepid band of survivors bravely searched through the old abandoned house for the monster. Fortunately for me, I had two things keeping me optimistic. FIrst, I was pretty much treating it as a just another game of hide and seek with friends. And second, the point wasn’t to win or lose; the point was to find Thursday, right? So there was nothing to be afraid of. I did wonder why Wendy would think otherwise, though.

Finding nothing behind “Door Number One”, I continued my left-handed search. There were so few windows in that place; I’d never liked that about the cabin whenever I’d come there. I knew there wasn’t much of a moon outside, and the mansion lights wouldn’t have a prayer or reaching through the orchard, but it still felt very oppressive, like being locked inside a room even though you know where the key is. I suppose I’d never really liked that about the mansion in general, though of course I can’t blame Remilia for building so few of them. Vampires were weak to sunlight, I’d heard, though I’d never much bothered to remember more than that. I’d forgot just whether they melted in it, or burnt to a crisp, or turned into magic dust, or just felt really sick or something, but I wouldn’t want our nice mistress getting inconvenienced for the sake of a few more portals to the outside.

The more I looked around, the more fun I actually started having. Not wanting to miss my target in an obvious—or even an unobvious—location, I stepped up my search well beyond what I’d ever done before, the normal exhilaration of searching as wide an area as possible replaced with the greater exhilaration of searching as thoroughly as possible. No drawer became too small to open, no space under the bed became too narrow to look under, and no pile of blankets became too insignificant to check behind. Even with just a little candle giving me light, I was surprised how many different places I spotted that could conceivably hide a tricky fairy, and I went over each one in my mind piece by piece.

That desk drawer… I could squeeze in there if I really tried, right? Let’s see if… oh, nope, not there. Guess that’d be too easy, after all.

Sure are a lot of pillows on that bed. Awful suspicious, no? Maybe she’s hiding-underneath-pretending-to-be-one…! No, guess not. These are real soft pillows, though. Why can’t I have a pillow like this?

Why does that end-table have such a big cloth over it? Is it to keep-a-little-Thursday-behind-it…! Aww, wrong again. Better straighten the wrinkles back out of it…

I know this garbage pail is way too small to hide in, but let’s just make sure! Aha, empty! Just like I thought it’d be! And there’s no one hiding behind it either! Okay! Moving on!

Now that little wisha-wisha-wisha noise, that could be the wind outside. OR, it could be… Thursday-talking-to-herself-in-the-closet-right-over-here! All right, all right, this closet
looks like a normal empty closet. But it’s dark; if I shine my candle in the corner behind these brooms, then… No, one, will be hiding behind it. A lot of shelves of blankets in this closet, though. Who’s hiding behind the ones by my knees?! Oh, nobody. Who’s hiding behind the ones at eye level? Oh, nobody. Who’s hiding behind the ones I have flutter up to reach?

“I am a monster.”

Oh. Hello.

Wait...


The “monster” stared at me with pearly, pale-yellow eyes, like two full moons in a dead grey sky. It looked like it was prepared to jump out and lash at me, the way it was crouched back and its massive furry hands folded right below its head, but it was prepared at a first glance only; the thing was so crammed tight into that shelf it was a wonder it had make it in there to being with. Or, “she”, more accurately; I’d assumed I’d stumbled upon the hiding Thursday, which was in fact the case.

I’ll admit my heart took a little skip when I actually found her, but as I’d been expecting for things to jump out at me for the last five minutes, it really wasn’t a big scare. And if anything, the monster-girl’s visage was more curious to me than it was frightening. I could really only make out her head, but it reminded me rather vaguely of a wolf, with the big pointed ears, elongated face, and long grey hair. Or, fur, or skin; I really couldn’t tell how much she had of each in that light. Still a mostly human face, but…very, very wild. Also, I was pretty sure wolves didn’t have two ram’s horns on their head.

“Found you, cousin~” I said coyly, rather happy with myself for winning the game.

“Rawr~! Run away from the horrible monster!” Thursday reached out a clawed hand to try and grab me, both of us well aware she was as least a meter too far away to do anything. It might have been terribly scary if she would have roared and growled and been a lot bigger, but as it was she was really quite cute.

“I don’t really feel like running away,” I answered back. “You’re not that scary. Besides, I was trying to find you.”

“Oh. Right then. Mmm, mind helping me get out? It’s tighter than it looks, y’know.”

“Must be really tight, then, because it looks tough already. Here, grab a hold.” I offered her my hands, which she took, and slowly we tried to wiggle her out of there, with much difficulty. I noticed how warm her hands were, and how alive they felt; a side effect of her monster-like form maybe? Seven fingers on a hand, too; I found that most peculiar. I wondered what the rest of her must look like, and if it was as odd as what I’d already seen.

Turned out that it was, once we got her loose and she ended up tumbling to the ground. Right away I noticed she had four arms and a thick lizard-like tail, all shades of grey to match her raggedy pillowcase of a nightgown, if it could even be called that. She stood up rather hunched over, too, so she’d have been taller than me standing straight, but it seemed that she couldn’t. She reminded me of some kind of cave creature you’d find in the bowels of the earth, except of course for the normal social interaction and pleasant voice. It sort of vibrated as she spoke, like she had a handful of voices rapidly fading in and out at the same time, but you could never pick out one in particular. Not very normal, but hardly a chore in the least to listen to. The fairy wings certainly felt out of place too.

“You’re Ms. Thursday, right?” I asked, just to make sure.

“More or less. I suppose less of her than normal right now, but it’s what’s inside that counts. And who might you be, to be privy to the oh-so-secretive naming conventions of our venerable Lady Flandre?”

“Oh, umm, I’m Friday, I guess. At least that’s what she calls me. That counts as a name, right?”

“Nmmm, a name’s a name; is it really who we are? What’s in a name? A rose, a rose, by any other name, would still smell just as sweet as if you cut your finger on it and in a rage called it some dirty word unbefitting of such a lovely flower. Yea, verily, and iambic pentameter something-something.” She made it sound like she was acting on stage as she said that mouthful, complete with dramatic hand waves. The words reminded me of something important, so I assumed she probably was. Then again, the words also reminded me of Flandre, which didn’t surprise me much considering Wendy’s mentions of how the two had supposedly rubbed off on each other.

“That was Romeo and Juliet, in case you were wondering,” she added, combing some of the tangled hair-fur out of her face. “Also, finally! Someone managed to catch you, or else you caught us first. I was going to hide in Flan’s room overnight last week and see who you were, but she kicked me out.”

“Why didn’t someone just knock on her door during a Friday? That’s what I did. Well, tonight, I mean.”

Thursday shrugged both pairs of her shoulders, something that didn’t really look as weird as it might sound on paper. “Mmm, that probably would have worked. Guess we forgot.”

I tried not to stare at Thursday’s body, but it really was something curious to look at. I guess “stare” wouldn’t be very correct in that case, though, because I was pretty much pacing around her and looking at her every odd asset. Could you really blame me? It was something new, and new was what I was all about at that point in my life.

“Wednesday really wasn’t kidding when she said you looked out of the ordinary,” I commented casually. “No offense, I hope.”

“Nah, none taken. I get that a lot; you get used to it.”

“How does…” I tried to think of any way to phrase that question that didn’t sound stupid, but absolutely nothing came up. “Umm, how can you look like that? I mean, you are a fairy, right? Like me, right?”

Rather than speaking, I watched as she, well…“melted backwards”. I really can’t describe it any other way than that. All the parts of her that looked inhuman (which is to say most all of her), slowly changed from whatever they were to a sort of glittery, translucent paste that slowly slid up her body, exactly like an ice cube melting in reverse. “Aether”, I believe is one term we fairies have called it; the stuff us sprites are made out of on the inside. For all intents and purposes it was equal parts solid, liquid, gas, and magic. I’m sure someone like Patchouli could give a better explanation, but all I really cared about was that fairies weren’t supposed to look like aether, in the same way humans aren’t supposed to look like blood.

Though in retrospect her response was probably a very good one, I would have wished she’d have just said something incomprehensible at the time. It chilled me far more than her curious creature shape did, that’s for sure. Thursday’s form dripped itself upwards, losing all the strange features it once had, and turned into a much more girlish figure like I was used to seeing from fairies. It wasn’t until her shimmering colors finally returned to normal skin and clothes that I realized something rather funny.

“Is this enough like you?”

Enough like me? She’d changed herself to be my exact double, a living pair of mirror images staring at each other like long-lost twins. Heh, “like me” indeed.


Author’s Note: If you want, we can finally take this opportunity to have Friday describe what she looks like, since she’s not yet said much about it. It shouldn’t affect the story much, other than making it easier to visualize in your head. Or if you prefer, she can stay ambiguous; I know that’s got a certain kind of charm to it. It’s your call.

[ ] Yes, description.
[ ] No, no description.

If yes…
( ) Insert description here. Be as vague or as specific as you wish; I’ll fill in the blanks.
( ) Or, be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

Afterwards…
{ } Well, I knew were Thursday was now. I figured we’d better go let Wendy know she could stop looking. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
{ } Now that all the shady searching was over, the quiet and seclusion of the second floor started to grow on me. Very peaceful; I could see why Thursday liked it. I decided to just wait here for Wendy to show up; it’d give me some time to get to know my new cousin. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
{ } I asked Thursday if she wouldn’t mind going outside; I’d had enough of this cabin for now. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
>> No. 32803
[x] Yes, description.
-(x) Or, be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

Afterwards…
{x} Well, I knew were Thursday was now. I figured we’d better go let Wendy know she could stop looking. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
-[x] Ask how she got into her job
-[x] Perhaps ask for some pointers in regards to the younger sister.
-[x] Ask what kind of Fairy she is, since you've never seen a shapeshifter before.
>> No. 32804
[x] Yes, description.
-(x) Or, be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

Afterwards…
{x} Well, I knew were Thursday was now. I figured we’d better go let Wendy know she could stop looking. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
-[x] Ask how she got into her job
-[x] Perhaps ask for some pointers in regards to the younger sister.
-[x] Ask what kind of Fairy she is, since you've never seen a shapeshifter before.
>> No. 32805
[X] Yes, description.
- (X) Be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

{X} Now that all the shady searching was over, the quiet and seclusion of the second floor started to grow on me. Very peaceful; I could see why Thursday liked it. I decided to just wait here for Wendy to show up; it’d give me some time to get to know my new cousin.
- {X} Ask about her: where she's from, how she came to live in the mansion, how she can change her shape like that.

I'd rather wait until multiple cousins are present to ask about how best to get along with Flandre; the contrast between their answers may prove informative.
>> No. 32808
[X] Yes, description.
- (X) Be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

[x] Sneak up on Wendy!
>> No. 32809
[X] Yes, description.
- (X) Be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

{X} Now that all the shady searching was over, the quiet and seclusion of the second floor started to grow on me. Very peaceful; I could see why Thursday liked it. I decided to just wait here for Wendy to show up; it’d give me some time to get to know my new cousin.
- {X} Ask about her: where she's from, how she came to live in the mansion, how she can change her shape like that.
>> No. 32820
[x] Yes, description.
- (x) Be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

[x] Now that all the shady searching was over, the quiet and seclusion of the second floor started to grow on me. Very peaceful; I could see why Thursday liked it. I decided to just wait here for Wendy to show up; it’d give me some time to get to know my new cousin.
- [x] Ask about her: where she's from, how she came to live in the mansion, how she can change her shape like that.
- [x] Ask how she got into her job
- [x] Perhaps ask for some pointers in regards to the younger sister.
>> No. 32828
[x] Yes, description.
- (x) Be adventurous and let the author show what she looks like.
- (x) With pictures and videos

Yes please.
>> No. 32829
{Yes, description.
- {Be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.}}

{Now that all the shady searching was over, the quiet and seclusion of the second floor started to grow on me. Very peaceful; I could see why Thursday liked it. I decided to just wait here for Wendy to show up; it’d give me some time to get to know my new cousin.
- {Ask about her: where she's from, how she came to live in the mansion, how she can change her shape like that.}}
>> No. 32844
[x] Yes, description.
-(x) Or, be adventurous and let me the author decide what she looks like.

Afterwards…
{x} Well, I knew were Thursday was now. I figured we’d better go let Wendy know she could stop looking. (Optional discussion topics if you wish)
-[x] Ask how she got into her job
-[x] Perhaps ask for some pointers in regards to the younger sister.
-[x] Ask what kind of Fairy she is, since you've never seen a shapeshifter before.
>> No. 32845
9 votes for letting me describe our protagonist

4 for staying there
3 for finding Wendy
1 for sneaking up on Wendy

7 for what she is/how she can shift
4 for asking where she’s from
4 for asking how she got here
4 for asking how she got her job
4 for asking about Flandre tips

No real disparity with the questions, so I’ll just try to throw them all in there as best I can. I also didn’t expect there to be such an overwhelming call to let me of all people depict the protagonist; doesn’t Anon usually jump at the chance of character design? Thanks for the support, though; I’ll try not to disappoint. Writing some now, the rest probably tomorrow afternoon.

>>32828
Ha, lol no; I wish. I’m a writefag, not a drawfag, and I don’t know the first thing about video editing. The best you’d get out of me is a shooped color-swap of whatever appropriate fairy I can find on Danbooru. Anything above that would take AFT getting popular enough for a real drawfag to take notice, which doesn’t seem to happen much anymore.
>> No. 32847
>>32845
Yeah, it looks like our drawfags have all faded away.
>> No. 32850
>>32845

Well it's just that the few we do know are busy and don't seem to read /sdm/ that much.
>> No. 32853
Bleh. Exams, and semester projects relating to said exams. I've got the next update maybe 2/3 done, but I really need to take care of some SRS BSNS studying first. Update postponed until Monday or Tuesday.
>> No. 32880
“How… that’s…” I stuttered, unable to really believe what (or who, even) was in front of me. A four-armed wolfenmonster was one thing, but frankly I found it rather creepy to be staring at myself in infinitely more detail than a mirror could ever give. There’s something to be said for that “uncanny valley” of realism, I suppose. Not that I’ve really ever used a mirror all too often, which is why I took that chance to look her… myself… the “she me” over.

If changing into other people was supposed to be hard (as I assumed it probably was), I highly doubted my hair must have been too hard to get right, considering how wrong it usually is to begin with. It always looked like one big wavy, tangled mess whenever I woke up, and I can’t really say I’ve ever taken many pains to tidy it aside from just pulling it back into a ponytail every morning to keep it out of my face. It would come down to my chest otherwise, and it can get so bothersome having a faceful of hair when you bend over, you know? Not that it was even a very good ponytail, and plenty of loose stands always found themselves flopping around on my head anyways.

I was surprised Thursday’d gotten the color right, though, even in this shady light. “Blonde” in a word, but not even much of that. You’ve heard of dishwater blond, yes? Similar to that, except I’ve sort-of put my own name to it: strawgrass blonde. It’s exactly like it sounds, I suppose; where you’d have mixes of blonde and brown, I have mixes of blonde and green, not unlike looking at a straw-grass field.

But the hair was simple; hair’s the big thing I always see different from human to human anyways. It was looking at my own face that sent a little chill up my spine. Thin lips turned just the slightest downwards in uncertainty, nose small and round like a child’s despite the rest of the face looking about a decade older, pepper-sprinkled freckles on my cheeks… If it wasn’t for her eyes I might have been totally fooled. They were my grass-green ones all right, but there was a twinkle about them, a mischievous little spark that I knew couldn’t have come from me.

The rest would have been easy enough for any shapeshifter to get right. Clothes were just clothes, and every fairy knew what our standard blue-grey uniform looked like. My height was average but my limbs were short, body rather thin-looking, translucent butterfly-like wings the same as nineteen out of twenty other fairies had; very boring stuff, I thought. After all, like Thursday had just said, it’s what’s inside that counts, no? She’d just taken it about three steps too far.

“You, umm, look… very, nice?” I stuttered, at a complete loss for any kind of relevant comments. If there is a reasonable, intelligent thing to say when a co-worker changes into a physical copy of you, I would most definitely have liked to know it right about then.

“Why thank you,” she replied, giving me a little curtsy. “You’re quite pretty yourself.”

“But… how do you do that? Are you a special kind of fairy from someplace weird? I’ve never met anyone who can do anything like… whatever it is you’re doing.”

She shrugged and shook her head, loosing even more hair from her/my untidy head and into her/my face. “Heh, that’d make explaining things easier if I could just say yes. Nope, no special place; I’m from Canada, eh? Or, at least I’m pretty sure it was Canada, eh? I remember snow and grass and a whole lot a nothin’. Might have been Russia, da? You know what they are, right? But that’s not important. And no, I started out just the same ’s you, from spirit to body and all that. I pretty much forgot what I looked like back then, but that’s not important either.”

“A-Actually, I don’t really know where Canada is,” I commented. World geography is hardly a key topic in the mansions’ “curriculum”, if basic social explanations and cleaning directions can even be called that. “Russia’s someplace big, though, right?”

“Eh, it’s a name, and it means things to some people. People who usually aren’t me. Canada’s someplace somewhere across the ocean, but I said that’s not important. Me, though, that’s… well, that’s important. It’s like… nyeh…”

Thursday trailed off and started pacing around in a circle, muttering to herself unintelligibly. Her left hand was always twirling around on her wrist, motioning this way and that, probably to add emphasis to the dialog she had going with herself.

“It’s just, like, you’re not you, y’know? I’m not you, I don’t look like you, because you’re not who you look like. Like this, this here?” she asked, poking softly at the skin on my arm. “That’s not you, that’s all… It’s just fake. You see where I’m going, cuz’?”

I didn’t have the foggiest clue what she was talking about; it was all Flandre-speak to me. I told her as such, and she sighed, rolling her hand around again to try and segue that subject into the next one.”

“Okay, umm, umm, it’s, sort of… Your hair’s not really you, and you face’s not really you, or you eyes or skin or wings or anything. Wait, no, other way… graah, it’s… You aren’t your hair, you know? Your hair doesn’t show nobody who you are, it’s just hair. Like skin and eyes and stuff anybody has. Not important, because you’re still you without all that stuff. It’s like… Well, it’s what’s inside that counts? That’s it, that’s what I’m trying to say, except not, because that’s just something people say. Me, it’s something I do.”

My comprehension was still lacking. “I… still don’t quite get it. I mean, I know the inside is important and stuff; ‘beauty is only skin-deep’, right? But does that actually do anything with shape-changing?”

Everything about shape-changing!” she exclaimed right back at me as she moved up rather closer to my face than I’d have liked. Clearly I’d hit upon an important, or at least tender, subject. “Because we’re not really real! We’re fairies! We’re not supposed to look like anything! That’s what I mean; you’re not you! You look like what you look like because people believe that’s what you look like, not because that’s what you are! We’re made of aether; we’re made of magic! Faith!

“This hand?” She held up her hand to demonstrate. “This hand doesn’t matter. This hand could be anything. Look, look, see? Now it looks like some bear’s paw. But I’m not a bear. See, see? Now it looks like some kind of dragon claw. But humans say dragons don’t even exist. It’s not about a hand, or a foot, or even a face. I look like you look like right now. I want you to tell me, just yes or no. Am I you?”

“N-no,” I answered, not really sure if it was a trick question or not.

“Why not? I look like you.”

“But, umm… I’m me. You’re not me. You’re you, right? That’s what you keep saying. Except you’re… not you? I’m so confused right now.”

She sat down on the cabin’s cool floor, massaging her temple and groaning. Not wanting to look superior or anything, I sat down as well, trying to wrap my head around her abstract concepts. We weren’t who we looked like… We just were who we were… But then who were we? If we didn’t have anything to look like, then everyone would just be a big blob of nothing. How could anybody live like that?

“I can’t ever explain this right from the start, no matter what I do,” Thursday lamented as she shook her head, voice quickly losing its edge. “I know how it works, I can do it, it makes sense to me, in my head. It took me ages to understand it. But you just… It’s all about belief, I s’pose. We exist because people believe we exist. We look human because people believe we look human, and so you believe that’s what you should look like. But you shouldn’t look like any one thing, because all you are is a soul wrapped up in nature’s magicstuffs. We could look like anything nature can come up with. If you believe you look like something else—really believe it—then you’ll look that way. It’s not about practice, it’s not about origins, it’s not about talent, and it’s not even about dumb ol’ fighting spirit. It you really believe that what you believe is really real, then it’s real no matter what anyone else believes.”

Both of us remained quiet for quite some time, letting the calming solitude of the cabin and the gentle wind at the window wash through us. Believe? You have to believe in yourself, literally yourself? You are who you chose to be? So simple, and yet so horribly vague. “Cryptic” indeed, just like Wednesday had said. I doubted I was going to make any more progress beyond what I’d already achieved, which despite not being all I’d liked was certainly more than I’d expected.

“I… hoo, I think I’m sorry I asked,” I finally told her.

“Ah, don’t be,” she answered, standing back up and some cheer returning to her voice. “The more you know, the more you grow. Just… don’t dwell on it, k? Took me a couple hundred seasons to really believe in it myself; belief’s not someone you can cheat. Live your life, have fun, work at something you really want to do. And… Bah, I sound like your mother or something. I’m glad I don’t have to worry about kids like humans do; I’d go mad. And Flan would hate that.”

A rather ironic statement, considering that Flandre was already mad, but I didn’t press the matter. I assumed that most likely someone like her, who despite her problems did sound like she knew what she was talking about, wouldn’t like being around minds as bad off as hers. They say misery loves company, but I hardly thought Flandre seemed miserable. And anyways, why are “they” supposed to be so right? I’d really like to know who “they” are, too.

“So, umm, do you mind if we just sit here for a while?” I asked, curling me feet under me for warmth. “I’m sure Wendy probably wouldn’t mind some more time alone. She… seems like someone who doesn’t like to be bothered to me. Is that right?”

“Oh, Wendy brought you down here?” She chuckled a multi-faceted laugh not unlike the rapid echoing of a child’s voice; odd, but rather pleasant to hear. “Yeah, she likes her alone time all right. Not entirely her fault, of course, but she might have tried putting a more positive spin on things. It really is a sad story, her past; if you feel brave enough you might ask her about it one day. But no, no, go ahead, I’m not doing anything, ‘cept talkin’ to you right now.”

“Well, I guess… how’d you get here? I mean, like, meeting Remilia and getting to be Flandre’s ‘Thursday’ and all that. It sounds like you must have come a long way.”

“You can call me Thérèse if you want, by the way; the day-names do wear on you after a while. Really just professional titles more or less, and not exactly very friendly.”

The name sounded like a mouthful to pronounce; so many fake letters and strange accents. I gave it my best, but it came out as. “Tear-eese?”

She smirked rather endearingly. “Hah, no: Thérèse. It’s French; you have to say it with more air.”

“Tair-aeirse?” I tried again, bungling it up even more.

“Pff, never mind. Thursday works. As for the story, there’s… well, really not much to say other than stupid coincidence. I was just floating around wherever it was I was from, like any fairy would. Caught sight of some red mist in the sky one night, and you can just feel when something’s extraordinary, you know? Red mist in the sky’s not a normal thing anyways, but when it’s magic, you know it’s magic, and that was magic. So I just followed it out of dumb curiosity until it stopped; turned out to be our Lady Remilia traveling back home from… I d’know, somewhere. Never met a vampire before—never met much of anyone before for that matter—so I just sort of tagged along like a little kitten. Came here, met the other girls, felt like fun; the rest is just some more boring history.”

“Oh, I… I see.” Truthfully I was a little jealous to hear that. She’d came here just on a whim to have fun, when I’d been forced to run away from the countryside I loved and came here like a refugee. I tried to hide the slight resentment in my voice regardless, and moved along. “And Flandre?”

Thursday (Teresa? Thaerece? I’d have to work on that) smirked, remembering days gone by. I thought I could see her hair slowly shift to the golden-blonde side tail of the vampire in question as she responded.

“Oh, that day; good times. Not good at the time, though. It was back, oh I don’t know how long ago anymore. Long enough. I’d really been getting the hang of shifting form back then, and after spotting Flandre a few times in the halls, I had this idea, you know? Like, wouldn’t it be fun if the next time I saw Flandre, I just change to look exactly like her and walk by like nothing’s wrong? Awesome plan, but it didn’t work. She actually started getting really nervous, talking to me like you’d talk to yourself in you head, you know? I didn’t know her back then, though, so then I got real nervous, which made her even more schizophrenic, and it didn’t take long for Sakuya to get involved. I think being the Thursday maid was just Remilia’s payback for terrorizing her sister or something, but it turned out we actually got a lot in common, so I stayed.” Remembering something else, she made a weird face and looked down at the ground. “Though, I think it’s sorta my fault Flan has that ‘split-talk’ problem, now.”

“Split-talk?” I wondered aloud. That term was definitely new to me, unless it was just a rewording of some old term I was too mentally oblivious to realize.

She shot her head back up as if she’d never been dejected in the first place. “Ohthatsriiiiight, you’re new, so you might not have seen it yet. See, I gave her this idea—“

An abrupt interruption cut her off mid-sentence, changing the atmosphere completely. A loud cracking, booming sound from outside, not close but certainly not that far away. Both our heads shot around to the hallway’s window, nerves suddenly tensed.

“Was that a…?” I started, hoping it wouldn’t come true if I didn’t actually ask it.

“That’s a gunshot,” Thursday replied, as confused as I was. “That was a gunshot. That’s, not a… good noise.”

“It, it was?! But, where? Who…?”

My cousin still seemed to be talking to herself. “But…we’ve only got ten max that even know how to fire a gun, and the only ones outside are… Ooooohh, Sapphire, if that’s you again I am going to ream you like a sheet of paper.”

Stomping off to the window and flinging it open, she began to climb through it, her form and clothes rapidly shimmering into fiery colors and sharp angles. She looked back at me with a pair of yellow snake eyes, giving her the feel of some kind of miniature demon.

“I’m gonna go check this out; you wait here. Don’t want you getting tangled up in more than what’s good for ya’. Got a feeling this is just some unnecessary absurdity, but you never know, you know?”

[ ] Despite her ardent warning, I wanted to know what that gunshot was about, and asked to tag along.
[ ] I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well.
[ ] Sounded fair to me; gunshots weren’t something I felt like getting very close to. Bidding her good luck, I headed back downstairs; Wendy must have been wondering where I went.
[ ] Well, she said “wait here”, and with a gunshot-ing something or other lurking nearby, I wasn’t going to argue. I sat myself down in the closet and proceeded to do as she’d told me.
>> No. 32881
[x] I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well.

I'm curious!
>> No. 32882
[x] Sounded fair to me; gunshots weren’t something I felt like getting very close to. Bidding her good luck, I headed back downstairs; Wendy must have been wondering where I went.
-[x] Ask Wendy if that's something to really worry about Thursday with.
>> No. 32887
>Not that it was even a very good ponytail, and plenty of loose stands always found themselves flopping around on my head anyways.
Ahoge fairy?

[X] Sounded fair to me; gunshots weren’t something I felt like getting very close to. Bidding her good luck, I headed back downstairs; Wendy must have been wondering where I went.
>> No. 32907
[x] Despite her ardent warning, I wanted to know what that gunshot was about, and asked to tag along.
We fought a vampire hunter to protect the mansion, we can deal with this.

Reminders:
>Perhaps she didn’t know about fairies at the time; she might have been new to the mansion. New enough not to know that fairies don’t die like humans die. You wound us, we feel pain. You cut our legs off, we fall down. But we aren’t made of flesh and bone like you are, no; we’re composed of the very aethers of magic itself. And those aethers don’t really care about things like knives and guns, not very much, no.

>Oh, and just to let you know, no BAD ENDs in this story; fairies don’t die, and respawning won’t cost any penalty besides a little unconsciousness. Feel free to take some risks if you want, I won’t hold them against you.
>> No. 32917
[x] I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well.

We have less to fear from a gun-wielding maniac than Sakuya does. A suprise shot from a hidden position, the bullet traveling faster the the speed of sound making her unable to react in time, she could be hurt, maimed, or even killed.

Unless it's some fairy-hating nutjob with cold-wrought iron bullets, we don't have to worry. Secondly, you want to take a secondary route unbeknown to the Head Maid 1) so Sakuya doesn't injure herself because she means to protect us, and 2) because you give the gunman two widely disparate targets, instead of bunching yourselves in a single zone of fire.

Stabbing that hunter, in spite of the character's timidity, is what started this whole story. This should be something she's capable of.
>> No. 32920
[x] Despite her ardent warning, I wanted to know what that gunshot was about, and asked to tag along.
>> No. 32921
[x] I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well.
>> No. 32929
[x] I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well.
>> No. 32935
4 for curiously investigating alone
2 for going with Thursday now
2 for holding back with Wednesday

Curious fairy is in ur base, not carin about ur boolets. Writing nowish; update tonightish.

>>32887
Sort of, but her hair's a little too long to have a proper "antenna" ahoge, plus she'd actually have several of them if she didn't take care of her hair at all. The distinctive feature is more the fact that it's unkempt and won't stay where you tell it to, even with a ponytail. I've been looking for a picture as an example, but haven't found anything close enough yet.

EDIT: Reposting because I linked the wrong post. Sage for derp.
>> No. 32938
I nodded and watched her leave, but my curiosity remained. Before long I found myself climbing out the window and investigating as well. Was it foolish? In all likelihood, yes. But who among us can say what great wisdom might be obtained from a little foolishness? Even a small child learns much from their first time placing a hand on a hot stove. How much more then a girl like myself could learn from a mysterious gunshot, one of the most commonplace weapons of our time?

Fluttering up into the sky, I scanned the treetops for any sign of where Thursday had gone to. A fruitless search, as I’d expected from waiting so long to follow her, but it did no harm at the very least. As to which way the gunshot had come from, I’d already forgotten what direction my ears had heard it. Towards the mansion, or away from it? While any random animal hunter might have just wandered close enough to our grounds to make a shot heard, there was far more going on near the house. If it was just some ambitious fairy, or maybe Sakuya being silly, or heaven forbid an assassin

Another shot thundered out into the night, giving my nerves yet another jolt and answering my question for me: away. It sounded distinctively different than the first, more of a “boom” in contrast to the original’s “crack”. Fearing I had little time to waste I followed my ears out of the orchard and over the grounds’ walls.

Remilia’s domain really had been built pretty much in the middle of nowhere, and I’d always thought the octagonal wall surrounding the lawn was rather pointless. Who were we trying to keep out, the sparse woods and nature’s smaller denizens? But even with its relative uselessness, it really did feel like when I crossed that wall, I crossed into a different world. Despite all the little annoyances and problems I had with the Mistress’s household, over the years I really had come to call it “home”. And for the first time in years, I had left it.

I doubt it’s something a human could feel; you rarely have much magic in you, no offense. But you know what it’s like to lose something you’ve always taken for granted, yes? Something like, oh, what’s a good comparison... perhaps some new electronic device? You get it, you love it, and you use it every day. Over time, though, I suppose it loses its new car smell; that would be a correct euphemism, yes? You live so long with it as part of your life, you forget what life was like without it, and how much your life changes when it’s suddenly gone, poof, just like that.

I’d forgotten. Forgotten why I’d been forced to leave my country, my home, my life. I’d forgotten just what it was like to live in a world where I could feel a void in my soul that grew larger every day. A world that acted like I didn’t exist. The mansion wasn’t anywhere near perfect, but… people cared about me. People believed in me, and I believed in them. I felt bits and pieces of me getting left behind as I crossed the threshold of Remilia’s little cloister, felt myself entering the old world I once knew, that I knew no longer, and that no longer knew me.

Needless to say, that prospect was far more terrifying to me than whatever was firing those bullets, even as another echoing boom pulsed into my ears.

The moonlight was dim, and cast little light on the thin forest surrounding the mansion as I grazed my way through it. Still no sign of anything moving or making noise, but I knew there were people out there. Cautiously I bounced from the shelter of one tree to another, straining my eyes into the darkness. With nothing to see, nothing to hear, my mind once again began prickling with insidious questions. Who was it? What could I possibly do if I found them? Was anyone hurt? Why was—

There! A stone’s throw away, I could see a shadow move, insignificant if I hadn’t been looking that way when it shifted. With curiosity pulling me forwards, fear pulling me back, and that determined conscience in my head pushing me forwards again, I advanced, weaving ever closer to the unknown.

The distance closed by half, and half again, until finally I could hear voices accompanying the shadows, one far louder than the other. How much of the conversation had I missed?

“…that you couldn’t bleed. Even amongst demons there are demons, it would appear,” a sharp female voice said. Did I know that voice? I was too concerned about the situation itself to tell.

A pained voice answered back, again a female I couldn’t exactly identify. “You think…a demon would, nngh, care about your human lead?!”

The shadows shifted rapidly, splitting into two distinct shapes. One burst from the ground forwards into the other, bringing with it a dull clattering of metal on metal. Sneaking to a better tree I could make out the dark shapes of two figures fighting each other haphazardly, one definitely a fairy and the other definitely not, clothed all in dark browns and carrying a large pack behind her. Their weapons glinted dully in what light there was, still no more distinguishable to me than a small blob held in one hand against a larger blob held in two.

The human woman made some obscured motion and jabbed, a dull thud quickly followed by a metallic “shink” which seemed to catch her opponent off guard. The fairy was forced to the ground with the human’s weapon pointed in her direction. How I cursed that wretched light for not illuminating more, and how I cursed my timidity for not daring to approach faster.

“Do that again and I will make the next shot count,” the human said coolly, almost in arrogance.

My pinned cousin struggled against the weight of the weapon, but even from that distance I could tell she was hurt and in no real condition to try another leap like she’d just done. Just who was this sprite, though? The bravery it would take to fight like that, and the fortitude to take a hit without crying out… was it one of the Seven I hadn’t met yet? I knew it couldn’t have been Thursday; the voice would have tipped me off immediately. But then who?

“As if that matters; you’ll pull that trigger in the end regardless, you zealot,” my cousin snidely replied.

“And send you back to Hell? You’d like that, wouldn’t you? Spend some time nursing your wounds and come back good as new. But I wouldn’t mind some information before I leave this hellhole, and you seem smart enough to comply.” Where had I heard that voice before? A movie?

A false laugh emanated from the fairy’s lips, marred with pain. “Heh, with, mmnn, with logic like that, it’s a wonder you ever made it this far. You think you’re the hero of the monster story, don’t you?”

“That’s strike two, spawn. Care to throw that idiot ball again?”

I watched the scene unravel in horror as these two women went back and forth, arguing to the death with weapons and words. Who they were and why they were here were luxurious questions I knew I wouldn’t get answered until all this was over. I knew that even the strongest gun in the world couldn’t truly “kill” one of us, but still…

[ ] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…
[ ] I didn’t want anyone getting hurt. Taking a leap of faith, I stopped my hiding and approached the two, hoping to reason with them, or at least break that angry atmosphere with my presence.
[ ] Even if I did something, I knew it wouldn’t matter; I was too small, and I’d be throwing away any advantage I had by holding back. I hated it, but I had to wait, wait until I knew for sure I could help.
[ ] I was small, small and foolish, but even someone like that can do a smart thing: run for help. The gate was close by; China, she would know what to do.
>> No. 32939
[x] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…
>> No. 32941
[ ] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…

LEEEEROY
>> No. 32943
{This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…}
>> No. 32948
[x] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…
>> No. 32954
[B] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…
>> No. 32955
[x] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…

i would have voted to get china, but these things get over very quickly... especially if you are at strike 2...
>> No. 32965
[x] This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before…
[x] Quietly grab a good, thick, solid branch, and slam it upside the taller figure's head.
[x] Retreat, leading her towards the gate, and therefore China, who can deal with her better than you can. This should also allow the downed fairy time enough to run away, or at least hide.

>It always looked like one big wavy, tangled mess whenever I woke up,
Delicious Kaoru vibes.
>> No. 32976
Unanimous vote to solve problems using actions, not words. Writing now, etc.

>>32965
Tanamachi Kaoru from Amagami, yes? I can see the resemblance. Friday's is similar, but longer, and of course has the ponytail.
>> No. 33036
This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before… Pretty much the same circumstances, when I thought about it, except this time I didn’t have that knife. Just my luck that Remilia would have me keep it for “whenever I might need it”, and the time I really needed it it was stuffed in my clothes drawer. Scanning the ground quickly I picked up a stout branch that had fallen off the tree above it; not the best weapon for someone of my stature, but considering how worthless a simple tackle from a child like me would have been, it was better than nothing.

Subconsciously I thought back to two weeks before, of all that I’d done that night, and all that had happened afterwards. I was still a nobody when it came to fighting, but… at least I was a little less naïve this time. Crouching down in front of my hiding tree, I shuffled my feet against the trunk, preparing to push off with as much speed as I could muster once I’d gotten my mind wrapped around this whole ordeal.

Okay, calm down, you can do this. You’re not trying to kill anyone or knock them out; just trying to keep everyone alive.

Big gun, that lady’s got such a big gun… It’s gonna hurt…!

Don’t be scared, you can’t be scared. Have to be brave, be brave for your cousin lying there. She was brave enough, you can be too…

Just count to three. One… two… two… two… nngh, two-and-a-half…?


I gave up trying to count to three; it never would have come if I’d waited longer anyways. The branch felt like lead in my hands as I sped across the grass, hoping so incredibly much that this was going to as least be of some help. The gun-woman came into range; I could see her furrowed brow and crazy eyes, smell the burning of old gunpowder from the weapon’s barrel. My arms flew forwards, sweeping the branch across the crown of the woman’s hooded head, and a mellow “plock” hit my ears, followed immediately by such a horrible stinging in my palms. Ow, ow ow ow, why did it have to hurt me when I hit someone else?

“Auuuhhgghh! Chirst-w-what?!” The human tumbled off balance, her long gun flailing out of the grounded fairy’s face. It took her only a second or two to regain her bearings, but she’d now dropped to one knee. “A second?!”

“Cousin, get out of here!” I cried, having pretty much no plan for anything other than acting as a distraction. Closer now, I could see my kinswoman was in bad shape. Raw holes peppered her torso where glistening drops of red aether shone through like rubies. Red-colored aether? I didn’t have enough time to think about it then, other than it looked eerily like blood. With her deep violet raiment and hair that shone like water even in the moonlight, she’d have been quite the beauty on a better day.

Spotting the woman sighting down her weapon, I took off to the side, weaving erratically like a fly and trying to make myself a troublesome target. Whenever I got close enough to her head I took another swing at her head or her gun, more just trying to buy some time than do any real damage. The gun’s barrel wove just as much as I did, but she didn’t fire, which I could only hope was a good—

Bad.

As I spun around for a quick switchback just a little too close, the gun blasted its thunderous report, filling my ears with so much pain I couldn’t even tell I’d been hit at first. I crashed into the grassy ground, splinters of wood from my club plastered to my side and my upper extremities a mass of agonizing fire. I refused to look, even for a second; you don’t need to look to know that your arms just got shredded into uselessness by a shotgun. Pain. Pain. PAIN. If I knew of more eloquent words at the moment that meant “pain” you can bet I would be using them right now. So much more pain than what I’d endured from a simple knife, and infinitely more than I wanted to ever feel ever. If this was what I got for being a hero, maybe being a hero wasn’t the best career choice for me.

Above the dull and deafening ringing in my ears I could hear the distinctive “schk-schk” of a shotgun being re-chambered, and see heavy boots in my sideways vision step over the limp body of the fairy and walk towards me. The aching lead in my arms blinded me of all but the smallest cone of vision; I couldn’t even see above the ankles of my attacker. But what I could see, and perhaps what she could not, was the white arm of my cousin reach out for her fallen weapon—a kind of leaf-bladed short sword—and slash across the backs of the woman’s feet.

I could barely hear her yell out, “Damn it, the ankles again?!” before she stumbled and fell in front of me, our faces barely more than a hand’s span away. For a second the both of us just stared at each other, eyes hazy with pain and confusion. We’d… met before, hadn’t we? No wonder I remembered her voice; it was that same hunter girl that had got me into all this in the first place! What the devil was she doing here?! She certainly remembered me, at the very least.

YOU! For the love of God stop following me around!”

I can’t exactly say I remember much after that. Just the woman dragging her shotgun around into my face and Thursday shouting my name in surprise before everything just sort of exploded into chaos.

+ + + + + + + + + +

“I gave you my blood because I expected you to treat it with intelligence and respect!” Remilia’s voice shouted. “I didn’t let you have it so that you could rush about and fight like a berserker!”

“With all due respect, you told me bullets would be a fear of the past, my Mistress,” another invisible voice responded sharply; it sounded like the fairy I’d seen fighting in the forest. “If vampirism can’t allow me to best even a mediocre hunter, then of what practical use is it?”

“You ate two shotgun shells to the chest at close range, my little Saphhire; that’s a force to take seriously even for the best of us. Be grateful you can even stand right now. I warned you back when I explained your misconceptions, even a fairy at her best can only hope to equal a human’s strength, and yet you blunder in wounded and bleeding with naught but charisma to save you?! If I were Meiling I’d force you back to child’s lessons without a second thought!”

“I’d ask you to let me keep my own opinions, M’Lady,” China’s simple voice responded, clearly taking no side in the debate.

Where was this? Where was I? I couldn’t see, I didn’t even have eyes to see with, or a head to house them. Where was my body? I heard wisps of conversation, but had no ears; how? It felt as if a dream, but the conversation had to be of real things, things I remembered from… how long ago was it? Time had no meaning to me anymore, or perhaps time was simply too busy with other things to give me any direction. I felt nothing, no pain or ground or coolness of the night air. I didn’t even realize it when the shadowy voices faded away into the void…

+ + + + + + + + + +

“Morning, sleepyhead. Have a nice dream?”

Thursday’s voice greeted me from whatever realm of unconsciousness I’d been lost in. I crawled up onto my hands and knees, rubbing the side of my face which was numb from the cold grass’s dew. It took me a little bit of waking up to realize that my hand was touching my face. My face, which was on my head, which I was pretty sure had gotten a shotgun pointed at it.

Wait…I had gotten a shotgun pointed at my face.

“What…bllleeehhnn, wha’ happened…?”

Thursday helped me up, currently looking like a very normal curly-haired redhead if not for the scarlet phoenix wings on her back. Or the pearly talons replacing her fingernails. As I came to I noticed I was still in the same patch of woods I’d left myself in, unchanged but for a dark orange tint to the sky. Must have been early morning if her greeting was any indication.

“Well, short answer, you got shot, then you died, but you got better. Want the long version?”

Reflexively I rubbed my face a few times more to try and clear my head. Died? That would explain the blackout, but not anything afterwards. And aren’t fairies immortal or something?

“You’d… better give me the long version,” I answered, looking my body over. Same hands, same feet, same dress, same ratted hair. And amazingly, I felt…fine. No aches or pains, except maybe a stiff neck from laying on the ground. Isn’t death supposed to hurt? Not like anyone who’s actually died would be able to tell you, but I would think it should.

“First time?” Thursday asked consolingly, rubbing my shoulder.

I bobbed my head. “Yeah…first time.”

She flashed me a quirky smile. “It’s all right; it’s not something we should ever have to deal with. But, when we do… Anyways, you were deconstructed, I guess is the official word we’ve been using. When our human forms become wounded beyond the point of healing, we dissolve back into aether and rebuild ourselves from the ground up, or something. It’s not an exact science, so sometimes it takes a while, but eventually here you are, good as new like it never happened. How do you feel, by the way?”

“Umm, pretty good, I guess, considering what happened. How long was I gone?”

“All night. Remi’s had me out here to keep an eye out for ya’ once you came back. I was actually getting worried that I’d missed you; normally it doesn’t take this long.”

Suddenly I recalled the voices from my “dream”, or whatever that experience had been. “Wait, Remillia…I heard her, where I was…dissolved, or whatever. And China, and that one purple cousin. What’s, what’s all happening here?”

“Complicated stuff,” she responded, letting me stand by myself. “Not really anything you need to care about unless you really want to; Remilia’s got it all under control now. Come on, time’s-a wastin’, and I’m sure someone back home wants you for something.”

Getting my bearings straight, the two of us bounced into the air and took a leisurely pace back to the mansion. I told my cousin I’d prefer to head…

[ ] …over to Remilia, first. Maybe she didn’t really care, but it’d be polite to let her know I came back in one piece, so to speak.
[ ] …over to Wendy’s room, first. I felt kind of bad for just leaving her alone like that, even if she liked being alone.
[ ] …back to my room, first. If this kind of stuff was going to keep happening, I figured I had no choice but to keep that knife with me.
[ ] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.


On the way over, I asked Thursday about… (Pick two)
[ ] That vampire hunter
[ ] That violet-clothed fairy
[ ] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed
[ ] If she knew anything more about deconstruction
>> No. 33037
>“First time?” Thursday asked consolingly, rubbing my shoulder.
Clearly, we need to find Saturday and have her take responsibility for the loss of our first time.

[X] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

[X] That violet-clothed fairy
[X] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed
>> No. 33038
[X] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

[X] That violet-clothed fairy.
[X] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.

Ouch, shotgun to the face.
>> No. 33040
[X] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

[X] That violet-clothed fairy.
[X] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.

Maybe Patchy will tell us something about this whole mess... maybe she knows something
>> No. 33046
X] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

[X] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.
>> No. 33049
>This was getting out of hand; my cousin was about to get shot! Maybe, if I just… helped somehow… I mean, two on one was better odds, right? It’s not like it wasn’t something I hadn’t done before… Pretty much the same circumstances, when I thought about it, except this time I didn’t have that knife. Just my luck that Remilia would have me keep it for “whenever I might need it”, and the time I really needed it it was stuffed in my clothes drawer.

derp

[x] …back to my room, first. If this kind of stuff was going to keep happening, I figured I had no choice but to keep that knife with me.

[x] That violet-clothed fairy

Why would Remilia offer a fairy of all people vampirism? As an experiment?

[x] That vampire hunter

RECURRING VILLAIN ALERT
>> No. 33051
{Getting my bearings straight, the two of us bounced into the air and took a leisurely pace back to the mansion. I told my cousin I’d prefer to head over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.}
{On the way over, I asked Thursday about that vampire hunter and that violet-clothed fairy}
>> No. 33052
[X] …over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

[X] That violet-clothed fairy.
[X] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.
>> No. 33059
[x] …over to Remilia, first. Maybe she didn’t really care, but it’d be polite to let her know I came back in one piece, so to speak. Also about hunter lady.
-[x] Next, the knife.
-[x] Then to Patchouli.

[x] That violet-clothed fairy
[x] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.

We can ask Patchy about deconstruction if we really want to know more.

I know this vote is for where to go first, but I just want to keep those next two destinations on hand, just in case.

Also, I kind of hope this Sapphire isn't Star Sapphire herself.

>Why would Remilia offer a fairy of all people vampirism? As an experiment?
see
>>33036
>“I gave you my blood because I expected you to treat it with intelligence and respect!” Remilia’s voice shouted. “I didn’t let you have it so that you could rush about and fight like a berserker!”
Best I can offer.
>> No. 33085
[x] …over to Remilia, first. Maybe she didn’t really care, but it’d be polite to let her know I came back in one piece, so to speak. Also about hunter lady.
-[x] Next, the knife.
-[x] Then to Patchouli.

[x] That violet-clothed fairy
[x] Exactly what I missed while I was deconstructed.

Sounds good to me.
>> No. 33103
6 for Patchouli
2 for Remi, then knife, then Patchouli
1 for knife

8 for the violet fairy
7 for the deconstruction timeskip
2 for the vampire hunter

Doubt this story has enough active voters to pull the vote away from Patches, and I feel like writing, so I’ll just call it good. Writing now/today/soon/in the near future (this probably ceased to be a useful statement about a year ago, but whatever).

>>33037
As least it wasn’t Flandre. That’d just be all kinds of awkward.

>>33059
>Also, I kind of hope this Sapphire isn't Star Sapphire herself.
No no, not even close; that’d just be stupid. Next update will explain.
>> No. 33109
>As least it wasn’t Flandre. That’d just be all kinds of awkward.
Dohoho
>> No. 33114
>>33103

Calling it for who? Patchouli? Well, wouldn't that be a major dick move? If you suspect someone votespammed or something, you should call a mod to check the votes.
>> No. 33116
>>33114
No, no, I highly doubt any votespam took place. AFT has always hovered around ten votes per update, and that's about what we got here, so it's all good. I just saw that towards the end there was a small push for Remilia, and given time (and more voters) Remi might have actually won out. But since I knew there's not that many voters, I just called it for Patchouli. I suppose I could have worded it better, though; sorry to make you worry.

Update hopefully tomorrow morning. I've had to rewrite the first part because it just seemed too gloomy, and nobody wants more gloomy in AFT.

Oh, and Merry Christmas, all! Sorry I didn't get you anything.
>> No. 33122
>>33116

But Friday'll check in with Remilia eventually right?

And you seemed to overlook my vote for Remi then Patchy.
>> No. 33124
…over to Patchouli’s room. “Deconstruction” or no, I was supposed to be her personal maid until she said different, and she couldn’t heal up perfectly like I could; she needed the help.

On the way over, I asked Thursday more about that violet fairy I’d seen the night before.

“Oh, Sapphire?” she replied cheerfully. “Yeah, that’s another one-a our locals; she’s Flandre’s Saturday, if you care about things like that. Heaven knows what she was actually doing out there in the first place, though I’m pretty sure I could guess.”

“Wednesday said she was…hunting, I think?” I remembered being rather confused about that; what would a fairy like us hunt, if we hunted at all?

“Yeah, that’d’ve been my guess. And then the hunter just winds up getting hunted; her own fault, probably. She’s a vampire, by the way. Or, half-vampire. Fairy-pire. Whatever it is you call someone who gets turned by another vampire, that. Though I guess any kind of ‘pire is wrong, since it’s not like you turn into a vampire.” Either Thursday didn’t notice my wide-eyed confusion, or she was too busy explaining things to care, and kept on going. “She’d originally wanted to call herself ‘Satire’, for ‘Saturday’s Vampire’. Sat-ire, you see? But then Remilia supposedly renamed her ‘Sapphire’, for ‘Saturday’s Faux Vampire’ instead. I think it’s an inside joke between those two, or something; you could ask her, but I doubt she’ll give you an answer. But, y’know, it’s like I said, what’s in a name?”

There was that talk about vampires again. I was more or less aware of the whole mythos behind vampires—drinking blood and vampirizing victims and all that—though I must say for living under a vampire’s roof I really didn’t know that many specifics. I suppose I must blame films and rumors for that; no two people ever seemed to be able to make up their minds about what a vampire was, what they were vulnerable to, or even what they could or couldn’t do. Sakuya always seemed to dodge the question whenever anyone brought it up, and of course it just wouldn’t be prudent to ask Remilia herself such a question.

“Okay, see, I’ve just don’t understand that,” I responded, trying for once to not come off as some little girl asking useless questions. “How could a fairy turn into a vampire? And… why? I mean, we don’t have any… like, blood, or even real bodies, like you said last night. It just wouldn’t work, would it? And anyways, it sounds so… wrong. Vampires are supposed to… eechkk.” I couldn’t keep holding back that disgusted face, like trying to choke down some vile concoction. Mainly because I could only figure that a vampire fairy would have to drink blood just as any vampire would, and honestly, which of our kind would stoop so low as to feed off our own precious nature like that? “I just, I don’t like it. It’s… sick.”

She sighed, tossing her hands up in a little slice of bewilderment. “You and me both, kid. Gives me the shivers just thinking about it, and that’s saying something coming from a girl who looks like whatever she feels like looking. But really?” She placed a comforting hand on my shoulder as we alighted on the mansion’s front lawn. A slightly creepy, taloned hand, but it’s what’s inside that counts, or so I heard from a friend. “I just try not to. I hear Remi say this little phrase a lot: love the sinner, hate the sin. I’m not saying what Sapphire did is wrong, now, I’m just sayin’… Well, you don’t have to agree with everything a person does to love them for who they are. I should know; I can’t say our sisters are too enthusiastic about the way I act, but I’m am okay girl, right?”

I nodded and tried to reassure her with a little smile. “Well, at least I think you are. I guess you remind me of Miss Flandre a little, just being all weird and stuff on the outside. Though, I guess I still don’t really know you two that well. Umm, no offense?”

“None taken, none taken.”

It was quite the serene picture nature painted on that lawn that morning. Just like the morning before it was far too early for any of the fairies to be out and about, so it was just Thursday and me padding across the grass, sky turning more golden-orange miniscule shade by miniscule shade. The great scarlet mansion rested quietly in the distance as it always did, looking neither foreboding nor comforting, just… great.

About halfway to the mansion, I broke the silence with my inquiries once again.

“Soo… What’s Miss Saturday like? I mean, besides all the… vampire and stuff.”

“Mmm, how to put it… She’s a nice girl at heart, though I suppose pretty much any fairy is. More self-confidence in her that I’ve seen in just about anyone else except maybe Remi or China. Tends to get a little uppity, though, from the aforementioned “vampire and stuff”. Kinda acts like it puts her a half-step above girls like you and me. Remi sorts of acts like her big sister or something, though, so she keeps that ego in check. Heehee, oh if you could have seen those two last night… Good times.”

“I… think I heard a part of it,” I mentioned, remembering the shadowy voices I’d heard. “Just… how much did I miss?”

“A bit. I guess I should apologize first; I should’ve jumped in when you did, but I didn’t think that crazy woman was going to shoot you!”

I scratched the back of my head bashfully. “Ohh, don’t, don’t worry; I forgive you! I probably wouldn’t have jumped in either if I’d have known I was going to get shot. I just… didn’t want Miss Sapphire to get shot again. Better me than her, I guess.”

Thursday smirked back at me. “Well, all’s well that end’s well, I guess. You made a difference, that’s for sure; bought Sapphire enough time to get back up and grab that boomstick away from the hunter, and by then I’d jumped in too. She sure had a lot of weapons in that pack she was carrying, I tell you what; even had a sword in there, if you can believe that. Took forever to tie her up, too. Anyways, long story short, Wendy’d heard the racket and went to get Remi, who got China, then Remilia yelled at people for a while like she always does when things don’t go her way. Sapphire slunk away with her tail tucked between her legs, China carried the hunter lady away, and I bumped around waiting for you to stop dying. Good enough?”

Knowing me, no explanation of things would ever be “good enough”, but of course if we all were never satisfied with the answers we were given, every conversation would take thrice as long and we’d only end up more confused in the long run. I just nodded my head and held the front door open for her, making a mental note to meet Saturday properly whenever I got the chance.

Telling Thursday that I really should get back to Patchouli, I bid her farewell and made my way to the librarian’s room. A soft knock was quickly followed by the door opening of its own accord, a phenomenon I didn’t exactly give much mind to at the time. I was rather surprised to find Ms. Knowledge awake at such an early hour, still pouring over that clipboard I’d given her and making additional notes.

“Ahh, most relieving to see you out and about after the events of last night,” she greeted in her rather impersonal way, looking at me through her circular reading glasses. “I trust your presence here means you are feeling well enough to assist me?”

“Yes, miss. I’m sorry it took so long, but I’ve never been, umm… deconstructed before.”

She nodded sagely. “There’s no shame in being disoriented after such an experience. But as long as you’re not troubled by it, I’ve work for you.” Motioning me to her bedside, she unclipped a pair of slim papers and placed them in my hand. “Here is a preliminary list of texts I require, as well as a list of supplies I will be needing, if I am to continue my work while bedridden. The books already in my study are marked; the rest you will find on the shelves. You may ask Ms. Sakuya for assistance in procuring any materials that are not already in my laboratory. Are your tasks clear?”

I nodded back, looking over the lists. Not too long, but I could tell it might take a while; searching for odd things like these wasn’t a day-to-day job I’d normally performed.

“There is one other favor I’d like to ask,” Patchouli added more seriously, catching me as I turned away to go work on her lists. “I’ve heard from Remilia that the lady vampire hunter who gave you and your kin so much trouble is still being kept in the mansion, somewhere on the second floor. Please inform me as to when she wakes; I would like to speak with her.”

So that woman was still in the mansion, even after two of these attacks? I wondered why Remilia hadn’t just killed her, or drank her blood, or whatever it is you do with people who want to kill you. But I wondered far more why the good doctor wanted to see her; they hadn’t even met each other before. Some science experiment, perhaps?

“Yes, Ms. Knowledge, of course. I’ll get started on this right away.”

Floating back down to ground level, I thought my current jobs over.

[ ] I decided to start on the book list first. Book-hunting seemed a lot easier than collecting miscellaneous supplies.
[ ] I decided to start on the supply list first. I really didn’t feel like reading book-spines in the library at the moment.
[ ] I decided I should start by finding out where that hunter woman was being held; it’d make it easier to check and see when she woke up.
[ ] I decided that maybe I should check-in with Remilia quick. Just to let her know I was all right. I just hoped she actually cared about something like that.


Author’s Note: Going on vacation for a while; probably no updates until next Thursday or so. Hang tight until then.

>>33122
Sentence 1: Ball’s in your court now.
Sentence 2: I saw it, but majority wins with votes, and majority wanted Patchy first. Encountering Remi would have made for an entirely different update rather than just a quick “Oh hi, I’m still alive, no worries” on your way to the librarian, so I couldn’t just fit it in as an extra.
>> No. 33125
>>33124
[X] I decided I should start by finding out where that hunter woman was being held; it’d make it easier to check and see when she woke up.

Makes sense to me to figure out where she is, check on her, get the other materials, check on her, get the books, and check on her again.
>> No. 33126
[x] I decided that maybe I should check-in with Remilia quick. Just to let her know I was all right. I just hoped she actually cared about something like that.
-[x] Perhaps ask her where that woman was (Mention Patchouli having an interest in talking to her)
[x] I decided I should start by finding out where that hunter woman was being held; it’d make it easier to check and see when she woke up. (on the way to or from Remilia's room)
[x] I decided to start on the book list first. Book-hunting seemed a lot easier than collecting miscellaneous supplies.

That's the plan I'd figure on the way That and a quick visit won't delay us that badly.
>> No. 33127
[ ] I decided that maybe I should check-in with Remilia quick. Just to let her know I was all right. I just hoped she actually cared about something like that.
[ ] I decided to start on the book list afterwards. Book-hunting seemed a lot easier than collecting miscellaneous supplies.
>> No. 33130
{I decided that maybe I should check-in with Remilia quick. Just to let her know I was all right. I just hoped she actually cared about something like that.
- {Perhaps ask her where that woman was (Mention Patchouli having an interest in talking to her)}}
{I decided I should start by finding out where that hunter woman was being held; it’d make it easier to check and see when she woke up. (on the way to or from Remilia's room)}
{I decided to start on the book list first. Book-hunting seemed a lot easier than collecting miscellaneous supplies.}
>> No. 33246
3 for the one thing
1 for the other thing

Remilia to hunter to books has it, I suppose. Writing now, update out before the new year.
>> No. 33256
It's still 2009 in my timezone.

I decided that maybe I should check in with Remilia quick, just to let her know I was all right. I just hoped she actually cared about something like that. I mean, she cared enough to keep Thursday there all night, and if she’d taken all that time to teach me about “the birds and the bees”, I guessed she’d probably want to know about my condition after last night. Being a bother was my only real concern at the time, and knowing how fussy Miss Remilia tended to get about little annoying things in her life, a bother was certainly something I didn’t want to be.

Tucking the two lists into my apron pocket, I fluttered up one of the many sets of library staircases to the fourth floor, and searched out an exit. I’d really rather not bore you with a description of the library; I’m sure you see or read about plenty in your lifetime. Lots of shelves in lots of rows, lots of books in lots of shapes, is there really more I need to say? I’m sure even its four floors of high ceilings and overall massive size don’t exactly excite you. It was a library; it had knowledge in it. Unless you’re looking for an obscure fact or some quiet solitude there’s really not much reason to come visit, and there’s surely more relaxing places to be had.

I found myself, for the first time, back in that memorable short hallway in front of Remilia’s door. I still remembered just where that cart fell, where I’d huddled up into a ball against the wall… Had it really only been two and a half weeks? Regardless, I now faced the same complication that hunter lady faced that night: no one is allowed inside Mistress Remilia’s room. No exceptions. And besides that, I was pretty sure she’d be tired. Or… would she? When do vampires do to sleep, anyways?

Dock-dock-dock went my little knuckles at the door. I’d just have to work those worries out later; Patchouli had me running errands after all, and I really wasn’t supposed to be dawdling.

“Good to see you out and about, little one. May I help you?”

“Oh! Mmm, Miss Sakuya?!” Really, how did she do that? She’d only just arrived, if my sixth sense was to be trusted. She seemed rather tired if my other five could be trusted, as well. “How did you, uhh, know I was here?”

She pointed to the top corners of the door, which despite my quick search was quite devoid of anything interesting. Nice gold leaf, though. “Magical wards inside the door; our Lady had Dr. Patchouli put them in. They let me know whenever someone disturbs the door; just another of those little things I need to keep an eye out for.”

“Sounds pretty busy.”

She shrugged. “Nothing I can’t handle. Somewhat of a bother during the daytime with you girls bustling about—this isn’t the only door that has them—but better to be over-informed, especially in my position. Anyways, is there anything I could help you with?”

“Well, I just wanted—“

The faint breeze of an opening door interrupted me, and a groggy Remilia stuck her head out of the portal, puffy sleeping cap and all.

“Nnnunnngghh…ishit important…?” she muttered, eyes not-so-firmly fixed on a portion of the hallway behind us both.

“Not particularly, My Lady,” Sakuya calmly responded.

“Zhe shay anythin’ yet?”

“She is still asleep, My Lady.”

“Th’kid back yet?”

The maid motioned to my obvious presence, which I’m not entirely sure if Remilia comprehended. “She is right here, Miss Remilia.”

The mistress rubbed her eyes and forcibly blinked away what bleariness she could. Even in her post-sleep stupor she managed to command an air of respect, however that was possible. I bowed my head and curtsied to her as she looked at me.

“Still ‘live, then?” she asked me, perhaps rhetorically.

“Yes, Mistress Remilia. I’m fine. Just, here to let you know that, I suppose.”

“Di’ it hurt?”

“Umm…the first shot did, yes. I can’t remember if the second one did or not, Mistress.”

“Scared?”

“N-no, Miss Remilia.”

“Gooh’ grrl. Won’ have none uh the smart uhn’s being afraid of getting’ shot.” The familiar rhythmic beep of Sakuya’s PDA made Remilia jerk slightly, followed by a hand to her temple as Sakuya apologized for the interruption. “Nnmmh, shtart mah breakfast while’m you’re at it, woman.”

“Of course, of course, my Lady; I’m terribly sorry.”

“Mmm, pamcakes. Lotsz… Lotsa, pamcakes. Goin’ backtabed.” Not even waiting for so much as a goodbye, our mistress pulled her head back inside her quarters and shut the door, leaving Sakuya a good deal more jittery than I felt she had reason to be.

“Well that was… not so bad,” she said to herself, hands twiddling in front of her apron. “Pancakes… Yes, yes, not hard at all. Could’ve been much worse. Not a problem. I’ll be off then, little one.”

“Oh, wai-wait!” I shouted, hoping to ask her something before she left. “Do you know where that hunting lady’s room is? I mean, uhm, Patchouli wanted to talk to her when she woke up.”

“Oh, that woman? Now why would Patchouli…” I would have liked to hear the rest of that sentence, but whatever enlightenments it held were kept within the cocoon of her time-frozen world, and she returned with much more composure. “Anyways, she’s being held in a bedroom on the second floor, East side. Just look for the room being guarded. And now, forgive me, but I really must get going.”

I could understand the sentiment, and I needed to get moving myself. Patchouli surely wouldn’t want her research to be slowed because of me, else I might soon find myself back to cleaning light fixtures, so it was off to the second floor for a quick check on this enigmatic woman. Was she someone important that I just didn’t know, perhaps? Or was I just oblivious to how the mansion treated prisoners and assassins?

Though I myself found it difficult to tell, the second floor was supposed to look far more grand than one like the fourth. I’d heard it was because the second floor was where all the best guest rooms were, but there’d never been a guest there in my recollections. The rooms took longer to clean, that much I knew. With nobody but me walking about the hallways at that hour, it wasn’t had to find the door I was looking for, or more specifically the guard in front of it. Saturday herself, ironically enough.

In retrospect, this Saturday looked night and day different from the one I’d seen last night. Her vest and short skirt was no longer trimmed with the red of her essence, but silver thread accenting a luscious purple fit for queens. She stood as a true guard stands, her chin high and her eyes narrow, which besmirched an otherwise beautiful and womanly face. With far more than moonlight to aid me this time, I could finally make out a most curious shade of liquid chestnut in her hair, which shimmered into a deep indigo like a water beetle’s carapace. Her wings…I knew those wings. Bat wings. Vampire wings. Remilia’s wings, when she felt like displaying them, which was rarely. I’d never understood that; when her wings just disappeared from her back, where did they go?

“Good morning, cousin,” I greeted simply, waiting to see if she’d remember me.

“And to you,” she replied officially, readjusting the weapon she held by her side. A… rapier, that is it’s name, no? But she’d had a different weapon the night before; why the change, I wondered? “You look… familiar. Have we met?”

“Oh, yes, umm, last night? I was, the… the one who got herself shot, I suppose…”

“Ahh, you… you?!” She didn’t seem to be expecting a response quite like that, and almost instinctively reached for her sword. “If you hadn’t…! Eh-hem, that was rather foolish of you; I had the situation under control.”

“Ohh, umm, sorry, I just… I thought it looked like you didn’t, is all.” I started to blush, realizing I hadn’t quite expected a response quite like that either.

She puffed a wisp of hair out of her face, folding her arms in front of her. “Well, it was not unappreciated; I thank you for your consideration. Friday, yes?”

“Yeah, that’s me, I suppose. And you’re Saturday, right? Or… Sapphire? Uhhm, do you prefer one or the other?”

“Saturday… will suffice,” she responded, gritting her teeth at the prospect. Her fanged teeth, I saw, now that I was closer. And magenta eyes to boot; almost red, but… hardly the eyes of the Sisters, that was certain. “I must say, that was an unexpected act of bravery for someone so new to what I might call the ‘real’ world. Have you dealt with these sort of incidents before?”

At the risk of breaking into a long-winded recollection, I simply answered back, “Yeah, more or less; that’s how I got this job, I guess.”

“Yes, yes I see. Most unorthodox. Then again, it is the unorthodox which sets us apart from the rest, no?” Must have been a rhetorical question, for she didn’t stop long enough for me to answer. “In any case, might you keep me company for a while? Rather boring with no one to talk to.”

[ ] “Oh, n-no, I’m sorry, but I’m just here to see if the hunter lady woke up yet. Patchouli wants to see her, you see.”
[ ] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”
[ ] Sounded like a good opportunity to meet another friend, to me. “Sure, I guess; no problem.”
>> No. 33258
Mine too.

[X] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”

We really shouldn't keep Patchouli waiting, but the pursuit of knowledge can interrupt sometimes...
>> No. 33260
[x] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”

We have a bit of time to spare and that's about it.
>> No. 33262
>“Gooh’ grrl. Won’ have none uh the smart uhn’s being afraid of getting’ shot.”
>“Nnmmh, shtart mah breakfast while’m you’re at it, woman.”
1) Why does sleepy Remi have a Texan accent?
2) Why is it so god damn adorable?

[X] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”
>> No. 33263
[X] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”
>> No. 33264
>>33256
[X] Sounded like a good opportunity to meet another friend, to me. “Sure, I guess; no problem.”

No real reason for this, and informing her that we should really get back to Patchu soon-ish is more prudent. But honestly, (who we've seen of) Flandre's seven fairies are probably my favorite non-canon characters on all of TH-P, so the more of them the better. Selfish, but whatever.
>> No. 33266
[X] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”
>> No. 33268
[X] “Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”
>> No. 33272
6 for just staying a little bit
1 for staying more than a little bit

Even the hard-working girl with aspirations of the future cannot resist minor exposition and character development! Writing todayish.

>>33262
1) See how badly you slur your words when someone knocks on your door at the crack of dawn after a late night.
2) The universal forces of D’aww~ and HNNNGGGG do not need to ask “why”.

>>33264
>But honestly, (who we've seen of) Flandre's seven fairies are probably my favorite non-canon characters on all of TH-P
There I go again, writing enjoyable things without really realizing it. I’m glad you like them; the supporting cast of the SDM need love too~

I haven’t forgotten about Koakuma.
>> No. 33273
>>33272
>1) See how badly you slur your words when someone knocks on your door at the crack of dawn after a late night.
Not at all?
>> No. 33275
>>33273
All right, you got me. Remilia was actually the original settler of Texas back in the 16th century. They would have named the state after her, but the telegraph operator wired it in as "Texas" instead of "Tepes", and by the time she found out she was too busy drinking her limitless supply of wild longhorn blood to care. This was why it was often said that "she truly has steak in her heart", and over time this would evolve into the misconception that the only way to kill her was to drive a "stake" through her heart.
>> No. 33276
>>33275
This is now Touhou canon.
>> No. 33277
File 126255153790.jpg - (42.60KB , 365x434 , 1195375052103.jpg ) [iqdb]
33277
>>33275
>> No. 33278
>>33276

Is that you, ZUN?
>> No. 33279
[x] “Oh, n-no, I’m sorry, but I’m just here to see if the hunter lady woke up yet. Patchouli wants to see her, you see.”

All business and no fun makes Friday a reialable fairy.
>> No. 33280
>>33275
This is some amazing improv. Well done, and cleverly written.
>> No. 33302
“Well, I suppose I could for a bit… I should get back to Dr. Patchouli’s errands soon, though.”

Saturday nodded. “Ahh, yes yes, she’s always on about her schedule. What’s the good doctor up to these days? I’ve not had a proper talk with her in some weeks.”

“Oh, well, I…” Momentarily I stuttered, trying to remember just what it was she’d been studying; it wasn’t like she’d exactly informed me of what I was going to be gathering those supplies for. “I’m pretty sure she’s trying to, uhh, summon a demon or something? She hasn’t explained just what she’s doing; I just happened to be there when she got hurt from… I guess whatever she was trying to summon. I don’t know all that much, Cousin Saturday; I’m pretty new to this.”

“Yes, so I’ve heard. Welcome to the team, by the way. A pity that the last Friday couldn’t have tried a little harder, but advising Lady Flandre isn’t something just any fairy is cut out for. We’ve been switching out maids for Friday and Monday for decades now; never seemed to find one that sticks.”

“Well, I’ll do my best to, uhh… stick, cousin,” I answered back, putting on a determined face. “I’m not afraid of Miss Flandre; I can take it.”

“Give it a few months,” she mentioned snidely, looking at me with sullen eyes. “She’s on her best behavior when she meets a new girl; doesn’t like readjusting to a new norm any more than they do. You’ll see the other sides of her soon enough.”

I gave a quick partial nod, trying not to dwell on that little queasy feeling in my stomach. There was always a world of difference for me, between rationalizing something out for myself and someone else telling me the same thing flat out. I suppose when it’s just you and your thoughts, you still hope that maybe, just maybe, you’re wrong, and the reality isn’t as bad as you think it might be. Then again, it’s not hard to understand that when it comes to dear old Flandre, everything you know is wrong.

Getting back on track, I asked Sapphire, “So, anyways, do you know if that vampire hunter woman is awake? Patchouli wants to talk with her for some reason. She’s right in there, right?”

She scowled slightly, looking over at the door beside her. “Unfortunately for us all, yes. Lady Remilia has her reasons for keeping her alive, and Hell knows what those reasons are, because I certainly don’t. If she slipped out once, she’ll do it again. Not that I wouldn’t mind seeing her try,” she added, patting her rapier smugly. “She won’t get lucky like she did last night.”

“But how did she get out in the first place? I mean, isn’t that the sort of thing Miss Sakuya is supposed to be able to stop before it even starts?”

“In a perfect world, yes. However, even Sakuya can hardly be everywhere every second of every day; any creature that tried would likely go mad from the stress. As it was, she’d been taking a shower at the time, and hadn’t been keeping track of things around the mansion. The prisoner picked her locks, found the weapons she’d brought with her, and climbed the outer wall. She had hell to pay once the Mistress found out, so I assume she might be rather ‘skittish’ today, if you see her. You wanted to see if the human’s awake, though; let us see…”

Saturday withdrew a key from her vest pocket while I ruminated on her response. So it was all just because Sakuya had taken a break? A rather sad coincidence, I thought to myself. The one time she’d taken a little break was the one time she shouldn’t have. She had been acting a little strange, come to think of it. It made me glad I hadn’t heard Remilia railing on her the night before, else I might have subconsciously pictured myself in her shoes. That was the odd bond we all shared with Sakuya, despite our differences: we were all servants, and our mistress did not discriminate between human and fairy when she was displeased.

I peeked into the room as she did the same. Though it maintained its luxurious scarlet motif Remilia was so fond of, all the furniture had been removed from the room save for a simple bed against the wall, where the woman lay motionless. Considering how large these guest rooms were, the removal of everything in it created a startling cavern-like prison that helped to kill the mood where lush carpets and rich wallpaper did not. Sapphire tiptoed in about two-thirds of the way to the bed before nodding her head and walking back.

“Still out,” she confirmed as she locked the room back up. “There’s no telling when she might wake up, but if you’d like I can send a message over to the librarian’s quarters when she does.”

“Oh, yes, thank you; that’d save me a lot of time. I really don’t know how long these lists will take me, after all.”

“Lists?” I showed her the two supply lists Patchouli had given me. Saturday made a rather funny face as she glanced over them. “Hmm…an odd collection, I must say. The doctor’s ways are certainly her own, but I won’t question her results. You’d best get started on that, if she’s as adamant about this summoning magic as I’ve heard from here and there.”

“Yes, yes I probably should. I did say just a little bit, didn’t I…? Sorry I couldn’t keep you more company.”

“I will take some over none, and I always enjoy talking to someone more informed. I’m sure I’ll be here all day if you feel the need to come visit; the Mistress won’t have me anywhere else. You keep on your work, now; the Seven need to set an example to the rest of our sisters.”

Thanking her for her time, I folded up the list I wouldn’t be needing and floated back over to the library. Sapphire… she didn’t seem so bad; I couldn’t really tell that she was “uppity” at all, for that matter. She looked very nice, too, very elegant, sort of like Remilia did. I supposed that was only natural, if the two shared the same blood, or whatever vampiric bonds were about. I’d wanted to ask her more about that, but there’s a time for everything, and at that point in my life, it was time to go to work.

I read off the first item in the list, or perhaps three items was more accurate: “Amulet of Samarkand, Golem’s Eye, Ptolemy’s Gate – By Stroud – FIC Shelf”. I concerned myself less with what the books might be about, and more with where I’d have to look for them. Were books sorted by book title, or by author, or… both? I’d never librarianized before (I have a feeling that’s not a proper word), and all these words were going to make my head spin if I didn’t focus. At least I had wings to look in all the high places; not much of an advantage, but I’d take what I could get.

All right, soooo… Let’s look at the shelves; are the shelves labeled maybe? “H-FIC Q”, what does that mean? It’s gotta means something at least; Ms. Patchouli’s a smart lady. Wish she would’ve told me where to look…

All right, okay, so… these are all books by Q-people; Q must be the name of the author, right? Patchouli wants books by Stroud, though, so I’m in the wrong place at the very least. I still need to find out what H-FIC means, though…

Here’s a new section! Umm, this says NON-FIC. Non fic? What’s a fic? Ooooh, wait, fic as in fiction? That makes sense. So I’m looking for just plain old FIC? Where are yooouuu, then? Here, fic fic fic~…


Inner dialog aside, finally getting a handle on how the books were sorted didn’t speed things up much. There were hundreds of shelves to look through before I finally found “FIC Sr-St”, and thousands of books within just that one shelf to pour through on top of that. Not to mention I was hardly the best at reading books quickly, or at remembering the alphabet song when it really mattered. Did T come before L, or after? H was right in the middle, wasn’t it? And why does W sound like a word instead of a letter, anyways?

Finally I spotted my quarry towards the top of the shelf, a few copies of each of them. Golem, Stroud, yes, this was definitely the right place. Not really knowing the difference between one copy or another I slid them out of the shelf and fluttered back down to the ground. It occurred to me I’d probably need to find a cart or something to put all the books on, but frankly I was too elated that I’d actually found what I needed to find to care very much.

Item two on the list: “The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus – By Marlowe – Study”. Honestly now, who would write a book with a name that long? It didn’t even seem like a very exciting name to me. But “Study” meant I’d have to look inside that office-classroom place I’d been going to with Flandre, and it probably meant it’d be more odd to find as well.

As I bounced down to the first floor and opened up the door to the study, my concern slowly ballooned into panic as I realized the state within. The mess, the mess! That study had never been very clean, and as I’ve said before I really don’t care much about clutter versus organization, but this was almost too much disorder for even my little brain to comprehend. Books, bound manuscripts, manila files, rolled-up charts, miniature whiteboards… And why was there a giant stuffed snake on the table?! The enormous volume of paper distributed throughout the room nearly made me believe that the paper itself was alive and had formed it’s own ecosystem! You couldn’t see any part of the desk, barely any part of the floor, and with the filing cabinets rolled out like that it almost felt like Ms. Knowledge was working in a cave back there. How could she have let this happen?!

Not even able to find a blank spot to set those Stroud books down, I clutched them close to my chest as I buzzed around the room, trying to find anything that made sense at all. How could Patchouli find anything in there? How could I?! I sure hoped that this was just a byproduct of her singular focus on summoning, and not what I’d have to deal with for months to come.

[ ] Okay, so Faust, Marlowe… If she said it was here, it should be here. All it would take is a little… All right, a lot of digging. Sounded kind of fun, actually. After all, if it was already a mess, there was no harm in messing the mess up, right?
[ ] Not wanting to disturb the delicate balance of… whatever balance these million papers were in, I carefully starting poking around, looking for the coveted book spine of Marlowe.
[ ] I had to think smart. Marlowe wasn’t the only book I needed to find here. I knew it would help in the long run if I cleaned that place up, first, however long it took. I just hoped Patchouli was all right with that…
[ ] And frankly, I didn’t want to risk disturbing something that might be important. As childish and insecure as it probably sounded, I felt it best to go back to Patchouli and ask her how best to tackle the situation.



>>33280
Thank you; I do what I can~
>> No. 33304
[ ] And frankly, I didn’t want to risk disturbing something that might be important. As childish and insecure as it probably sounded, I felt it best to go back to Patchouli and ask her how best to tackle the situation.

We should go back and double check, just to be safe.
>> No. 33306
[x] I had to think smart. Marlowe wasn’t the only book I needed to find here. I knew it would help in the long run if I cleaned that place up, first, however long it took. I just hoped Patchouli was all right with that…
>> No. 33307
>>33302
[X] Not wanting to disturb the delicate balance of… whatever balance these million papers were in, I carefully starting poking around, looking for the coveted book spine of Marlowe.

Stay cautious, little fairy.
>> No. 33308
werent we just freaking out about things being too much "in order"?

[x] I had to think smart. Marlowe wasn’t the only book I needed to find here. I knew it would help in the long run if I cleaned that place up, first, however long it took. I just hoped Patchouli was all right with that…
>> No. 33309
[X] Not wanting to disturb the delicate balance of… whatever balance these million papers were in, I carefully starting poking around, looking for the coveted book spine of Marlowe.
There's no surer way to piss off a scientist than moving their stuff around without their knowledge.
>> No. 33319
[x] Not wanting to disturb the delicate balance of… whatever balance these million papers were in, I carefully starting poking around, looking for the coveted book spine of Marlowe.
[x] Make a note to bring it up later. It's not just that it's a mess, but when it is too disorganized and confusing for even a fairy, then the situation needs mentioning.
>> No. 33331
>H-FIC
ಠ‿ಠ
>> No. 33399
3 for careful searching
2 for cleaning
1 for going to Patches

Searching wins it, then. Writing today.
>> No. 33483
A bunch of life stuff just popped up at the end of my vacation. Postponing the update for a few days until I get it sorted out. Sage for lol real life.
>> No. 33760
Author's Note: Apologies for the delay; next semester at the university started, and I've been running around like crazy getting ready for classes and such. My plan is to attempt a regular update schedule of Monday-Wednesday-Friday now, but we'll have to see how that pans out.



Not wanting to disturb the delicate balance of… whatever balance these million papers were in, I carefully starting poking around, looking for the coveted book spine of Marlowe. No easy task, I assure you; the piles of miscellany were either precariously stacked and wobbled at the slightest touch, or were so spread out they were more like heaps than piles. My wings saved me a great deal of trouble that day; someone ground-bound couldn’t hope to move about that office without slipping and tripping on the carpet of miscellaneous papers, and I could only assume Patchouli’s oft-used levitation prevented her from doing just that.

Once the initial dizziness of looking at the room subsided, I started focusing on picking out particular landmarks around the room so I wouldn’t have to search the same place twice. A pile of folders in this corner of the table, or a stack topped with a thick purple book there, my brain slowly plotting out its bearings using things like that as a heading rather than directions. I must tell you, it truly did look like that room was a jungle made of paper rather than plants. You’d think I’d enjoy that kind of atmosphere, being a fairy and all that, but I just found it rather hard to. Perhaps it’s simply the whole unnaturalness of it all, a sort of “uncanny valley” of similarity to nature, if that makes any sense to you. Of course, a big mess in a forest will slowly break apart and fade away, as the little insects and vines slowly eat away at the chaos and return it to where it came from. Not so with dead papers and leather bindings.

It was slow, but it was steady. After maybe ten minutes of searching I realized how smart it might be to just find all the “Study” books at once and get them out of the way. With enough focus on my part, and perhaps a little luck, I managed to finally pick apart that book list title by title, switching to the next one down the line whenever I’d slid the book out of its hiding place. Funnily enough, that Marlowe Faustus book I’d looked for ended up being right in plain sight next to the desk chair, and I smacked myself for not seeing it earlier. Thirteen books all in all, including the three from before, and the study only slightly the worse for wear. I’d have to ask Ms. Patchouli about that; how could she keep her bedroom so clean when her workroom was so messy?

Dutifully I picked up the heavy stack of tomes… and proceeded to fall flat on my face as the books toppled beneath me. Apparently I’d gotten a little too excited with my search to remember how heavy so many books were for a little fairy. I winced as the dull plunk-plunk-thump-dlump-thud of heavy covers hitting the floor resounded throughout the library, nearly expecting some horn-rimmed glasses lady to hover over me and give me a firm “Sssssshhhhhhh!” as punishment. She didn’t appear, thankfully, though the lady who did was probably cast from a similar mold.

“What an unfortunate tumble, cousin. Do you require assistance?” Wednesday suddenly said as she stood over my spill.

Rubbing my aching nose, I looked up at my sullen-voiced sister. “Oh, Webnsday. Goon morbning. Dibn’t she you there.”

“Understandable. I ask again; do you require assistance?”

“Oh? Sure, yeah, sorry.” Popping myself back to my feet, the two of us picked up my mess together, though I saw that Wendy had taken eight books to my five, which didn’t unbalance her in the least. “Do you wanna help me get these back to Ms. Knowledge, please?”

“As you wish,” she replied emotionlessly. Seriously now, did she add voice inflection to anything she said?!

It was slow going up from the first floor to the second, mostly my fault as I wobbled around in the air trying to keep my book stack steady. Wendy made no remark, though she was clearly having no trouble with her own load.

“So, umm, it’s pretty early,” I commented, “Why are you awake?”

“It is my scheduled day to look after Flandre. Also I was returning a borrowed book to its proper place.” That’s right, yesterday would have been Tuesday. How soon I forgot that our names actually meant something. Then again, I was only “named” the day before, so perhaps it just got some getting used to.

“Oh, so you finished reading that dicshunary already?”

“If by finished you mean read it in its entirety, no. But I am finished with it for the time being, and thus do not need it in my quarters.”

“Mmm, I guess that makes sense.” I didn’t blame her, and in fact I’d sort of expected something like that to happen. Wendy looked like a serious soul with her dark eyes and boring speech, but a fairy’s a fairy, and a fairy just can’t force herself to sit there and read thousands of pages of boring lists even if she tried; we’re just too whimsical at heart, I suppose. Not that a human would fare much better reading a dictionary anyways, I wouldn’t expect.

I gently pushed Patchouli’s door open and stepped inside, Wednesday right behind me. “Miss Knowledge, uh, I brought some of the books back,” I shouted up to her bedroom cubicle. “I still got more, though; just wanted to drop these off I guess. Do you want them down on the coffee table or should I bring them up there?”

“…up here please…” the librarian answered quietly, barely more than a whisper from all the way across the room. Motioning to my cousin with a head nod, we flew up to the infirmed woman, whom you could easily guess was still hard at work noting notes on her clipboard, scattered papers now littering her down quilt as she lay there.

“Just set them on the ground there, please; I can manage from there.” I managed to notice that from the time we flew into the bedroom “cubicle” Wendy hadn’t stopped glaring intensely at the purple-haired woman, even as she set her stack of books on the floor. It didn’t go unnoticed by Ms. Patchouli, who ended up staring right back at her, though I must say the effect was lessened since her reading glasses cast a glare over those deep violet orbs of hers.

“Miss Wednesday,” she said emotionlessly, instantly setting the mood.

“Lady Knowledge,” Wednesday emotionlessly answered, outwardly holding herself as properly as any maid would in the presence of a superior.

The doctor slid her glasses back up her nose nonchalantly. “You may be pleased to know that these injuries you see are a direct result of a error in judgment I made concerning magical experiments just yesterday morning.”

Wendy blinked once, but her expression didn’t alter an iota. “And yet I may be displeased to see that it does not seem to have made an impact on your research into said magical experiments.”

“No… perhaps not.” Would I have been one of the more quirky fairies who’s power lay in the more fringe aspects of Nature’s magic, I might have actually been able to see the thick beams of emotional tension running between the two girls’ souls. As it was, I could only stand there and wonder what kind of past grievances must have existed for two people to talk to each other like that. My cousin had mentioned rather vehemently the disagreements she had with the good doctor’s work—disagreements I agreed with, even—but seeing it play out was a rather chilling sight, I must say. I was certainly glad when Patchouli simply said “As you were,” and the mood returned to normal as we left the room.

Remarking upon the time, Wendy told me she needed to head down to Flandre’s room before it got too late. As I watched her back turn to me…

[ ] I could only wonder if I’d ever find out the past life that made that sprite tick. Regardless, I needed to get back to work.
[ ] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question (write in one, or just leave it blank and let me choose)
[ ] A thought occurred to me: Lady Flandre had specifically said that she wasn’t “awesome”. And I suddenly became filled with the urge to follow her and find out why.
>> No. 33765
[x] I could only wonder if I’d ever find out the past life that made that sprite tick. Regardless, I needed to get back to work.
>> No. 33767
[x] I could only wonder if I’d ever find out the past life that made that sprite tick. Regardless, I needed to get back to work
>> No. 33769
>>33760
[X] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"

I demand more fairies!
>> No. 33770
>>33769
Good idea.

[X] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"
>> No. 33771
[X] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"
[x] Then I got back to Miss Patchouli's errands. Wondering about her would just have to wait.
>> No. 33774
[x] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"
[x] Then I got back to Miss Patchouli's errands. Wondering about her would just have to wait.
>> No. 33786
x] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"
[x] Then I got back to Miss Patchouli's errands. Wondering about her would just have to wait.
>> No. 33787
[X] I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question: "Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?"
[x] Then I got back to Miss Patchouli's errands. Wondering about her would just have to wait.
>> No. 33801
6 against 2 for the write in; no contest here. Writing a little now before class, and I should have it posted later this afternoon.
>> No. 33805
…I called out, wanting to ask her just a quick question.

“Oh, hey Wednesday? Would you happen to know where to find Miss Sunday or Monday?”

She answered back, though that didn’t stop her from walking away at the same time. “Cousin Sunday’s room is on the fourth floor to the left of Miss Sakuya’s; it is labeled. Monday’s is in the basement; I have not made it a habit to discover which one. Failing these, you might ask Miss Sakuya to search for them instead. Have a good day, cousin.”

I gave her a cheerful “good day!” back, though I fear it fell on deaf ears. So serious and all about the business, she was… But wondering about her would just have to wait. I needed to get back to Miss Patchouli’s errands. Pulling out that book list again, I managed to find a pencil lying about and checked off what I’d already picked up. More than half of the books remained, so I steeled up my nerves and got back to work.

It’s a tiring business, picking random tomes from shelves early in the morning. I could only imagine how a true librarian must feel, having to do that all day, and felt glad that few enough people used the library here for us fairies to do much more than dust the cobwebs away every now and again. Why did Remilia (or Patchouli for that matter) feel the need to have thousands, perhaps millions of books, when they couldn’t possibly find the time to read all of them? Then again, I had so little use for books that the answer is probably much less cryptic to you.

I tried to think about other things as I searched through the rows; to occupy myself, you know? But it ended up being a lot more difficult than I would have expected, and I really only ended up with disjoined scraps of questions and observations. Useful, I suppose, but much less so than I’d have liked.

So Monday’s in the basement; I bet she’s more normal like me…… Should I just take every book back to Patchouli one at a time? Wait, no, that’d be inefficient. But what if she wants that specific book right as I pick it…… Maybe I should ask Sakuya if she can teach me how to use that knife; she’s real good with weapons, I heard…… When is that hunter lady going to wake up? I hope Cousin Satire won’t get beat again if she does…… What does Dr. Knowledge want to summon, anyways? And why? Can’t fairies do just about anything some spirit thing could do? Then again, maybe she wants her own special pet or something……

I forgot how long it took before I’d picked up every book on the list, but it felt three times that long. I must have ran back and forth to Patchouli’s room at least ten times, dropping off books or telling her I couldn’t find one and having her correct my search. By the time I’d finally set down the last heavy book (something with “Mythos” in the name I think), I was exhausted, despite feeling like I’d done practically nothing.

“You may rest for a while, little one; your diligence is rather laudable,” the librarian told me after I’d flopped down on the ground next to her bed. “I received a missive from Sakuya not too long ago that our prisoner has finally woken up, so I believe I shall pay her a visit before too long.”

“Tha’s… Tha’s nice,” I muttered, trying to find a comfortable spot for my head inside my folded arms. “D’you want me to come with you?”

“That would be advisable; I doubt walking by myself is yet an intelligent option.”

“M’kay. Don’ worry about me; I’m just gonna… lay here for a while.”

As I closed my eyes and wiggled my face into my makeshift arm-pillow, I could hear the soft sritch-ritch-sritch of a pencil being dragged across paper, and the sighs of Miss Knowledge as she rustled around the pile of notes on her bed. Working for Patchouli… It was no real different than any other day, just pecking away at menial physical labor like always, and yet it felt so much different. Richer, maybe, or perhaps “more robust” is a better word. The thing was, I could actually see who I was working for, and see my work getting put to use. Polishing mirrors and sweeping floors, I knew that was all for Remilia and for the mansion, but it was just so impersonal, working day after day alone without really knowing if you were doing any good. And then in a few months you just have to go back and sweep the floors again. What was the point, if there was one?

I think I must have drifted off for a few minutes, because it certainly came as a start to me when Ms. Patchouli started talking.

“Little fairy… Tell me, why does magic work?”

“Huh? Whazzat now? I’m not, huuuwuh, not asleep.”

“Magic. I have studied it for close to seventy years now, and at every turn it contradicts itself. What I read in one book is refuted completely in the next, and my own experiences are at odds with both of them. I feel as if either these books are all lies and not one author had ever truly understood what they wrote, or else each and every book is true at the same time. But how can either be? It’s just not logical…”

I’d gotten myself up and crawled over to the little stool by her bedside, but it seemed like she really wasn’t asking me in particular a question. Rather, she just wanted someone to talk to aloud, rather than talking to herself.

“I, uhh, gee, I dunno,” I replied, at least to let her know I was listening. “But magic does work, doesn’t it? I mean, you can do it, so you gotta be doing something right.”

“It works… only too well. This is my stumbling block, little one. See here.” Motioning to her bed, I watched as she whispered a few odd words in some odd language and held her hands over a blue pencil, which then started to hover in the air without anything to hold it.

“Pretty cool,” I said, having seen little tricks like that performed by her before, and it always fascinated me.

“But see here, at this symbol I’ve drawn on this paper,” she continued, showing me a delicate parchment etched with blood-red symbols and circles, arranged into a pattern I didn’t really understand. “I set the pencil in the center of this circle, and sprinkle on it rainwater mixed with ash in the sign of a pentagram. See how the pencil vibrates and writhes? And there, there it goes; it has lifted itself into the air. The process is different, but the result is exactly the same. And yet I find that the rituals are a waste of time; all I must do is pick up this pencil and look at it, let it leave my hand,” (which she then proceeded to do) “and I can keep it afloat with my mind alone. Why? Why? If magic exists, and I know that it does, it must follow rules and constants of some kind, any kind. Why then does it follow multiple rules at the same time? Why?

Having no good answer of even a cheerful reassuring variety, I just sat there and watched the pencil levitate, poking it with my finger to see if it’d fall down. The doctor sighed and humored me for a while, making my finger chase the pencil around the bed and even poking back at it on occasion. Eventually she kept talking even as we played together, her voice still downcast and confused.

“I’ve read thousands of books about scores of magical systems, wee sprite. I have sampled them all, tested them extensively… and practically all of them work. I have reached the point where even the magical abilities described in mere works of fiction are not impossible to perform for me. Two or three different systems I could rationalize; as it had been said, there is quite literally more than one way to skin a cat. But when I know of over a hundred different ways to light a candle without ever touching flint or oil, that is unacceptable.”

“But… why?” I asked her, finally giving up on chasing the pencil. “I mean, you’re a magician; you can do things that everyone else can only imagine in their heads! It’s amazing! It’s wonderful! Isn’t that… enough, for you?”

She closed her eyes and emitted yet another long sigh, her arms going limp as her whole upper body relaxed itself. “Not for me. Not for a scientist. And certainly not for anyone in the long ages of the world who has wanted proof of the supernatural and was left unconvinced from the explanation. The world we live in now… It is not the world I lived in as a child. It is not the world Remilia and Flandre lived in when they were children. And even that world was not the world where magic was true fact, and not simply juvenile fiction. No, little one, it is not enough for me. Like you, and your quest for knowledge, I too want to know why.

Those words struck a chord in my heart, far deeper than I realized at the time. As I saw her lying there, tidying up her notes, it struck me as to just how weak she looked, weak in more than skin and bones. Had I known then what I knew about Dr. Patchouli Knowledge now, I’d have reached over and hugged her, let her know that she wasn’t the only one who was confused, that she wasn’t as alone as she thought she was. Had I known…

Pushing the covers off herself, Patchouli slipped her legs off the bed and said, “I think I would like to see that human now.”

“Oh, yeah, yeah, here, I’ll help you walk, just hold on to my shoulder…” Carefully I got the woman standing on her feet, her long lilac dressing robe swishing calmly by her ankles. Every step we took was slow and smooth, Patchouli not exactly limping, but simply not trusting her own strength to keep her up. I wished I’d have been about a foot or more taller, so that she might have leaned against me rather than using me as an awkward mobile crutch. Down the bedroom lift, out the door to the hall of books, into the main part of the mansion, down the central lift to the second floor, and across yet more hallways until finally my cousin Saturday came into view, right where she’d last been.

“Ahh, Doctor Patchouli,” she said, giving her a regal bow. “I was told to be expecting you. The prisoner is well-chained to her bed, but still rather uncooperative. I would suggest giving her a wide berth if you’d like to speak with her.”

“I will keep that under advisement,” she replied, slowly removing her weight from my body and looking down at me properly. “Do you wish to come in as well, little one?”

[ ] “Yes, actually, I would.”
[ ] “I-if it’s all right with you, yeah.”
[ ] “If it’s all the same to you, I’d really rather stay out here.”
[ ] “No thank you, I’m fine.”
>> No. 33806
>The doctor sighed and humored me for a while, making my finger chase the pencil around the bed and even poking back at it on occasion.
D'awww.

[X] “I-if it’s all right with you, yeah.”
>> No. 33807
[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”
>> No. 33808
[X] “I-if it’s all right with you, yeah.”

Be brave little fairy.
And try to resist kicking the prisoner in the shin.
>> No. 33809
[X] “I-if it’s all right with you, yeah.”

I think Patchy has taken a liking to our little fairy.
>> No. 33810
{“Yes, actually, I would.”}
>> No. 33811
[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”

On the matter of why magic works, is that it's a contrast source in the world, and it's just that there's various methods used to channel it to one's ends, and each one has their limitations.

As for the I think we shouldn't be afraid to come in.
>> No. 33812
>>33805
[X] “Yes, actually, I would.”

Every update gives me something else to love.
>> No. 33815
I know we haven't reached autosage yet, but can we have a new thread plesae?
>> No. 33816
>>33815
...Why? This one will fit at least one more update and its votes before hitting autosage.
>> No. 33818
File 126361848657.jpg - (224.09KB , 707x583 , 125927851072.jpg ) [iqdb]
33818
>I have sampled them all, tested them extensively… and practically all of them work. I have reached the point where even the magical abilities described in mere works of fiction are not impossible to perform for me.

Probably for the same reason everything in Gensokyo exists: because people believe it does. Youkai and gods came into existence because enough people believed they existed. The magical ability of a person could simply be the influence of their belief, the power to change myth into fact on their own. All of these methods work because she's magically making them work.
>> No. 33819
>>33818

I also think it's a matter of how much experience Patchouli has with magic in general, since with enough experience, you could make any known magic method to work regardless of actual experience using that method.

after all causing a pencil to float is child's play compared to conjuring the elements unassisted. (Sure she might read spells from a book, but she doesn't need something to cast magic)
>> No. 33820
[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”
>> No. 33821
[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”
We've long gained the skill to speak with complete sentences.

>If magic exists, and I know that it does, it must follow rules and constants of some kind, any kind. Why then does it follow multiple rules at the same time? Why?
Who would have thought that Patchouli would waste so much time trying to find under which shell the ball is? Didn't she ever wonder why is magic only possible in a land were everything is ruled by belief?
>>33818 put it very well, leaving me with nothing to say except to add that the complex rituals and elements are just meant to diminish the incredulity, present on most beings, to things that can't be explained nor analyzed.
>> No. 33823
[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”
>> No. 33824
>>33818
>Probably for the same reason everything in Gensokyo exists

Have you forgotten? In this story the SDM hasn't moved to Gensokyo yet.
>> No. 33826
>She closed her eyes and emitted yet another long sigh, her arms going limp as her whole upper body relaxed itself. “Not for me. Not for a scientist. And certainly not for anyone in the long ages of the world who has wanted proof of the supernatural and was left unconvinced from the explanation. The world we live in now… It is not the world I lived in as a child. It is not the world Remilia and Flandre lived in when they were children. And even that world was not the world where magic was true fact, and not simply juvenile fiction. No, little one, it is not enough for me. Like you, and your quest for knowledge, I too want to know why.”

I was saving this ditty for Fallout Gensokyo, but:

"It is the same reason that magic grows strong when science is weak, is because what we do not know we can make into anything. 'Magic' relies not truly on faith; it relies upon ignorance."

Quite possibly, it is Patchy's analytic mind that is the problem, she takes a reductionist approach to find out the 'true' framework, and confounds herself when she finds many work just as well.

Regardless, I think in most fan interpretations, it is the accumulation of knowledge, not power, that is her life's work.

[x] “Yes, actually, I would.”

We started this shindig by cutting through her tendon. We should come to some sort of reckoning here because Friday has already begun to develop a phobia of knives.
>> No. 33827
>>33816

I just don't like threads too long.
>> No. 33828
>>33827

Only the author decides with a thread pre-auto sage is too long or not.
>> No. 33829
>>33827
Either I am missing something, or this is one of the most arrogant posts I have ever read on this site.

"I don't like threads too long"? Fucking deal with it. Who cares what you like?

Tell me you aren't such a whiny pussy as that post made you sound.

The only reason to object to long threads is if you read them on your cell phone or something, like I do sometimes. I am unable to see a full Palingenesia or Moko-tan thread, for example, even if I click the "Last 50 posts" version (Which I generally have to do anyway).
>> No. 33830
The thread's 5 posts from autosage now anyway, so I guess the argument resolved itself.

>>33824
That doesn't really matter, since it's only relying on her magic and the writings. I'm just using that as an analogy.
>> No. 33839
File 126375043855.jpg - (17.12KB , 230x174 , how to read.jpg ) [iqdb]
33839
>>33829

Well, duh, for what other reason would I, or anyone else, dislike long threads? I have been reading the CYOAs on my cellphone since the Forest LA started. If I had a decent cellphone, with a decent screen and a decent browser, I wouldn't care so much.

>I am unable to see a full Palingenesia or Moko-tan thread, for example, even if I click the "Last 50 posts" version (Which I generally have to do anyway).

You are doing it wrong. The best way to read new updates is to save them on separate text files first, and then putting them back on the main file. Pic related, it's how I read Pallingenesia; had to divide it in various files.

I've thought of doing the same thing with every story, but Palingenesia is the only one of its size. Well, maybe the most recent update for the Fallout Story, and the next one too, if the time it's taking for it to be ready is any indicative.
>> No. 33846
>>33839
Oh? Well, good. That's kind of a relief. ...Might want to say that up front next time, rather than just give a weird statement with no explanation, though. It doesn't paint the best picture.

>Since Forest LA
Damn.

>You are doing it wrong.
Well, actually, I'm doing it the only way I can. I'm pretty sure my phone sucks more than yours, as I don't believe your method is even close to feasible for mine. Thanks for the hint, though.
>> No. 33850
>>33846

I was ctually going to say "Scrolling down has become a pain", but then I thought "Meh, this is the same thing, right?". It is not, the same thing.

>Damn.

This site became a great passtime when it was that active in the beggining. Specially when classes were sleep-inducing and work is basically a patience test. Things may have slowed down considerably, but it's still a good way to waste time.
>Well, actually, I'm doing it the only way I can

Wow, your cellphone must be ancient. No HD/Memory stick and USB ports? That must suck, man.
>> No. 33870
8 for “Yes, actually”
3 for “I-if it’s all right”

+2 Confidence gained. Writing some now and some after work. New thread prolly won’t be up until tonight since this scene could have some tricky dialog I don’t want to screw up.

And even real discussion about things! It’s like this story is deep or something! I’ll keep my mouth shut on the magic for now, though as far as new threads go, I’d rather hold out for autosage generally; the post limit got increased to 250 specifically so we’d have less threads cluttering up the boards, I think. I’m sorry for all you cellphone folks, but them’s the breaks. In retrospect, AFT moves slow enough that it should only really be a huge problem once every two months or so.


>>33808
Better than a boot to the head.

>>33812
Ohh, you’re making me blush again~
>> No. 33871
The way Friday narrates in the past tense makes me feat she may have left the mansion in the future.
>> No. 33872
>>33871
Well, she might still be in the mansion but telling a curious guest her tale. Since I'm sure some folks would be surprised by a fairy like her.
>> No. 33873
>>33872

I always imagined her telling the story to a kid. Someone's kid, maybe Sakuya's? Or just someone who moved in.