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172849 No. 172849
You didn't remember what day it was when you arrived in Gensokyo, but you had decided after the Christmas and New Year's party, that you would just officially declare this was your second year here. It was kind of funny to think about, if someone had told you this was going to happen to you last year, you would've thought they were crazy.

Yet, here you were living in some kind of land that should only exist in books. Still, you had no complaints with it here. Not only was your health better then ever, but you had made some really close friends as well. It really was turning out to be rather nice... there was something odd about that grimoire of yours, but well, it didn't seem too important. Magic was magic, you guess.

It had been about a week since the Christmas and New Year's party at the Scarlet Devil Mansion, and you had been... doing a whole lot of nothing, actually. Remilia hadn't given you any work, saying she was going to give you at least a few weeks to relax, and while your skillset was rather unique in Gensokyo, it was also not something that was in quite high demand. Either the people of the village preferred buying new products, or maybe they just took really good care of their things.

The winters were a bit chilly, but your house was nicely insulated at least, although you wish you had a fireplace, or one of those kotatsu you had heard about. You had considered looking into buying one, but... well, there had been an odd situation about that.

Remilia had been, of course, paying you, but it seemed you had been mistaken about something the entire time, and it wasn't something anyone else had corrected for you until recently. Unlike the outside world where Japan's currency was, as it was explained to you 'based on pennies', Gensokyo was still using an older form of coinage; specifically, one that actually revolved around three coins of varying value.

More or less, you had been paid in 'rin', copper coins. It was basically pennies. You had a lot of it, but well, it wasn't as much as you had probably figured... you had always thought Remilia's payments were quite high, but it seemed she had actually been paying you a rather fair price – some of the non-money gifts she had given you not withstanding. Either way, Aya was the one who had actually corrected you on this and had taken it upon herself to go and handle the money exchange for you.

You weren't too sure why she was so eager to help you, but you didn't really protest: it was cold out! And your house was at least a few hours walk or so from the village, and even if you flew it was still rather cold. Either way, the crow tengu should be back either today or tomorrow you figured. You were kind of looking forward to it, there wasn't much else to do in the house, and no one was really visiting since the party.

Probably because it was cold.

“I'm comin' in Reina! Don't worry about getting the door, I'm already in through the window!” announced a voice cheerfully, one you immediately recognized as the crow tengu's.

How did she always get in through a window anyway? You swore those things were locked...

Footsteps quickly and lightly approached you in the kitchen, where you had been spending your money wrapped in a blanket, and enjoying a nice cup of hot cocoa. As you had expected, the grinning face of Aya greeted you as she waved, quickly pulling up a seat across from you.

“I wasn't sure if you were going to show up today or not, I guess everything went alright?” you asked with a smile, “Ah! Do you want some hot cocoa? I can make you a cup...”

Aya flashed another grin and shook her head, “Nah, you look comfortable like that, don't have to go unbundle on my account, I'm not cold or thirsty anyway. But, yes everything went smoothly of course! It just kind of took a little while to actually get it all done...”

“I really have to thank you again for going out of your way to do all this for me.”

“Don't worry about it! That's what friends are for, right? Anyway, before I hand the money over, let me just give you a quick little rundown... I guess someone should've explained this to you earlier, I kind of forget the outside world uses such a different system then us...” the black-haired youkai shrugged.

The crow pulled out a copper coin and showed it to you, “This is 'rin', basically just a copper coin. It comes in either one rin, or five rin. Ten rin will equal one...” the tengu revealed a silver coin to you, “One of these, a 'sen'. Now, a hundred of these equals one 'yen'!” Aya then revealed a gold coin.

“So... copper, silver, and gold coinage. I never knew Japan used to actually use this kind of thing...”

“It's kind of new to us really. About, oh... fifteen years or so before Gensokyo was made, we were using this 'mon' thing. I kind of liked them. They had a hole punched in the middle, so you could carry them around on a string! But, then they kind of changed it all to this rin, sen, and yen thing...” the tengu sighed and shook her head, “Ah, right! One last note. Besides these lovely coins, we actually do banknotes for them too. Just for sen and yen of course. I got you all coins though, I think they look nicer then a silly piece of paper.”

You chuckled and gave Aya a warm smile, “Well, I don't mind too much either way. So uh, how much did I get anyway?”

Aya pulled out a small sack, again from somewhere you couldn't place, “Not a bad amount I'd say. Go ahead and count!” with that, she placed it on the table and slid it over to you.

Putting your hot cocoa down, you opened the sack and emptied its contents into your other hand. A variety of silver and gold coins shone in your hand, and you carefully looked them all over, noting the denominations on each. There wasn't any copper rin coins, but given their value you kind of expected that... still, by your math once you converted the sen to yen, you had about ten yen in hand. Basically nothing in modern yen value, but in Gensokyo that was apparently a fair amount of money. You think.

“Yet another thing I thought I'd never get to do, actually hold gold and silver coins. You just don't see things like this in the outside, not unless you're a coin collector.”

“I've seen some of your outsider currency, it all looks pretty boring. I don't even really like the banknotes we use, I much prefer the sound of a jingling coinpurse! Not to mention, paper has a bad habit of getting loose and then it's just gone in the wind.” the tengu sighed and shook her head, “So, hey, I know it's cold today and all but, well you've got money and such and I know you're still on 'vacation', so why not go out and do something? I'll even fly you there!”

Aya's offer was rather tempting. You hadn't seen anyone in a little while now... maybe you could go out and visit someone. Of course, you could also just stay home... or perhaps look into visiting the village? Well...

- - -

What do you want to do today?
[ ] Go visit Reimu at the shrine
[ ] You're on vacation, but why not go visit the Mansion?
[ ] Maybe Aya knows where to find Yuuka?
[ ] You've got some coin, why not spend it in the village?
[ ] You'll just stay home.
[ ] Other (write-in)

> Gained 10 yen

- - -

I know my last attempt at money didn't go TOO well, but don't worry. I'm going to keep this as simple as possible. I didn't even reintroduce workers, even though I really wanted too. I'm not planning on adding them, but if at some point the option is brought up somehow, and you all vote on it, I will introduce them in some simple fashion.

Don't worry about a budget. I'm just going to assume Gensokyo is nice enough to at least provide rice for everyone to eat so no one starves. Just try and relax and enjoy it.

I've been wanting to do this for a long time. I have another CYOA I want to try out, but I kind of want to finish this up first, so I can maybe reference it and such... anyway. This time I'm serious. No more reboots, no more restarts. RiG2, the way it should be – right after RiG1.

>> No. 172850
[x]Go visit Reimu at the shrine.
Let's start with simple things.

Also kriss, let's do this. FULL POWER. TOTAL ANNIHILATION-

whoops, wrong fandom.
>> No. 172851
This is nice and all, but can we get a recap for RiG? It's been a long while since the first half, and I can't remember what happened back then.
>> No. 172858
[x] Go visit Reimu at the shrine

I'm always up for some Ray-moo.
>> No. 172861
[x] Go visit Reimu at the shrine

Donate 1 yen for continued protection from mischievous youkai.

We can also see Reimu freak out over such a huge donation cause Reina probably has no idea how much a yen really is in Gensokyo.
>> No. 172863
>ITSHAPPENING.gif
I hope this goes well. Everything after the first RiG just sort of... stopped. Saddening because I always liked the laid back characters in this story.

[X] You've got some coin, why not spend it in the village?

Maybe Reina should do something different.
>> No. 172866
[x]Go visit Reimu at the shrine.

Glad to see you're doing this.
Loved the original RiG.
>> No. 172869
[x]Go visit Reimu at the shrine.

I hope this won't get mired in various 'game mechanics' as the character interactions are the enjoyable part.
>> No. 172870
When are you going to update Moriya house of cards again?
>> No. 172871
>>172870
Eh. I could do that today I guess. It kinda fell off my radar because it just didn't feel that good to me.

I put too many characters in it, to be honest.
>> No. 172876
>>172871
Perhaps but I want to see how it ends, that and for a story that doesn't go into NSFW details, it does a pretty nice job in being arousing.
>> No. 172878
>>172876
I'll work on finishing it then. If I do another 'Of Cards' I'm going to need to limit it to probably 4 people at best...

>>172851
I'm terrible at recaps, but...

Reina has a grimoire, if she stays too far away from it she'll die.

Remilia employs her a lot to make things for her.

Reimu and Yuuka both seem to have a romantic interest in her, and she's kissed both of them at least once.

Reina is all around nice girl with many friends.

... Yeah I'm bad at these. Someone else could probably make a better recap...
>> No. 172881
File 137617284180.jpg - (191.51KB , 850x984 , sample-0f0f2c08b7b407f2b1adda8e84d9414d.jpg ) [iqdb]
172881
[x] Go visit Reimu at the shrine

- - -

It was chilly out today, but there wasn't really much to do in your house anyway... your parents had never bought more modern entertainment options like a television or a computer – not those things would probably work here anyway. You had pretty much read all the books you owned as well by this point, so Aya's offer to go out somewhere was sounding pretty appealing...

“I guess I can't turn down your generosity Aya. Besides, it's pretty boring here by myself.” you pick up your cup of cocoa and down it before responding, “Can you take me to the shrine? I haven't seen her in a while.”

The crow tengu grinned and extended her hand towards you, “But of course! Express trip to the Hakurei shrine comin' up. We'll be there before you know it.”

~

The speed at which Aya flew always surprised you. Your own flying was rather slow and unsteady, but Yuuka and Reimu both had rather reasonably fast speeds. Aya on the other hand just... flew. Your mind idly considered that at the speed she was going the wind chill would be brutal, but for some reason it just didn't bother you or her – maybe there was some kind of magic behind flying that you didn't know...

Regardless, in a short amount of time you found yourself being gently lowered on the ground, looking up at some steps before the shrine proper, you threw the tengu a questioning glance.

“A little bit of walking won't hurt you! If I wanted to be mean, I could've set you down there.” she pointed behind her at the set of stairs stretching downwards.

“Reimu really has her work cut out for her. This shrine really should've been placed closer to the village I think...” you state as you begin walking up the stairs.

Aya shrugged, casually floating alongside you, “Doesn't really work that way. A shrine like this has to be placed on a specific site, typically a kind of holy ground. You just can't plop a proper shrine anywhere you want!” the crow shrugged, “I understand in the outside world, that's not as true anymore. And well, she can set up a branch shrine anywhere, but she seems pretty content to just lazy around up here.”

“She's got a pretty important job though, right? So I think she's entitled to take it easy when she wants.”

“Yeah, too bad 'when she wants' is pretty much all day, every day unless an incident is actually happening.” replied the crow with a sly smirk.

You chuckle and shake your head, “I don't think she'd be too pleased hearing that. But I guess the least I can do for this is not rat you out to her when I see her. Do you think she's inside the shrine?”

“Without a doubt. In this weather, she wouldn't even bother coming out to sweep. She's got this nice, warm kotatsu inside so she's probably using it right now.”

It doesn't take you too long to make it up the stairs and then walk straight ahead to reach the shrine proper. You carefully open the front door and peek your head in, loudly announcing that you're coming in, along with Aya.

As you slide the door open and enter the shrine, you can hear the sounds of rustling and movement. By about the time you and Aya both enter and close the door, you turn to see a somewhat surprised red-white clad girl looking at you.

“R-Reina!? This is a surprise, I didn't expect to see you!” her gaze flicked over to the crow, her mouth twitching into a slight frown, “And Aya, I see. Well, I guess that explains how you got here.”

“Last I heard, I think Reina is perfectly capable of flying on her own. I just happened to be at her house, so I thought I'd offer her a lift.” replied Aya with a grin.

The shrine maiden narrowed her eyes at Aya before sighing and shaking her head, “Well, ah come on in then. You look kind of cold Reina, are you alright?”

Despite the shrine lacking any kind of heating or noticable insulation, it is a bit warmer inside then it is outside, but its still a little chilly. But Reimu doesn't seem to notice, or care, given she's not wearing anything special... just her usual shrine maiden outfit. You yourself had thrown on a scarf and jacket at least!

“I guess I'm a little cold. But it's not too bad, you and Aya look like you don't even notice it at all...”

“Well, I'm pretty used to it. It does give me a good excuse to wear this scarf, although I don't really need it.” joked the tengu, playing with her scarf briefly, “Reimu on the other hand? She just seems to not care. Still, you'll find her under her kotatsu in this kind of weather anyway.”

The Hakurei glanced darkly at the tengu, “Well, what can I say, it's comfortable. I have some snacks, but I'd have to make some tea now... maybe I have enough already, I guess we'll see...”

It didn't take long for her to lead you into a room, which was largely empty aside from some furniture, but the biggest attraction was the covered table in the center, upon which was a teapot, a cup, and some snacks. Judging by the fact the cup was half empty, and some of the snacks were nibbled on, it was clear that your arrival had interrupted Reimu from her lounging.

The young girl quickly excused herself as she went to fetch more tea and some cups, there seemed to be enough snacks already though. The tengu quickly sat herself at the table, letting out a relaxed sigh as she slumped slightly.

“Ah... a kotatsu is always so nice... you really should look into getting one, I think! I'm not really sure where you'd be able to put it though.”

You sat yourself at the table and had to agree with Aya's thought. It was really warm under here... maybe you would have to look into this. Then again, you could just wait until it wasn't winter anymore.

“This is pretty comfortable... now I'm really not going to want to move from this spot.” you joked with a grin.

“That's a pretty normal reaction I think. I've spent a good part of the day just seated here sometimes.” spoke up Reimu, suddenly appearing in the room, “Here, have some tea. I'm not sure what kind you like, so I just kind of made more of my usual...”

“Ah, thanks much Reimu! If I remember, your kind of tea is pretty good.” said Aya, happily pouring herself a cup.

You offered Reimu a warm smile as you poured a cup for yourself, “Thanks Reimu. So, been up to anything since the party?”

The shrine maiden shrugged as she returned to her seat, “Not really. It's been quiet in Gensokyo recently, so I'm thankful for that. But I guess it also doesn't leave much to do, but... eh, whatever.”

“Well, if you had nothing to do, maybe you could've gone and visited Reina from time to time!”

Reimu puffed her cheeks slightly, frowning at Aya, “It's not like I didn't think about it, but well... I figured she was busy.”

“I guess I've been on a sort of vacation. Remilia hasn't really given me any work, and no one in the village has either. Actually, Aya just helped me get some money issues sorted out...”

“Is that so? Well, I guess even the reporter can be helpful once in a while...”

The crow threw up her hands and sighed, “When am I not helpful? I can be a faithful reporter and a good friend at the same time.”

The brown-haired girl rolled her eyes, munching on a cracker, “Of course you can Aya, of course you can.”

- - -

Well, these two get along well...
[ ] Talk to Reimu!
- [ ] Ask about her personally?
- [ ] Talk to her about training?
- [ ] Maybe she can go shopping with you!
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Talking to Aya
- [ ] What has she been up to?
- [ ] Inquire about her paper.
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other?

For this, pick as many as feels reasonable. As always, write-ins are strongly encouraged.
>> No. 172882
[x] Talk to Reimu!
- [x] Ask about her personally?
- [x] Maybe she can go shopping with you!

[x] Talking to Aya
- [x] What has she been up to?
- [x] Inquire about her paper.

Catching up with friends is always good!
>> No. 172895
[x] Talk to Reimu!
- [x] Ask about her personally?
- [x] Maybe she can go shopping with you!

[x] Talking to Aya
- [x] What has she been up to?
- [x] Inquire about her paper.

This sounds pretty good to me.
>> No. 172949
[x] Talk to Reimu!
- [x] Ask about her personally?
- [x] Maybe she can go shopping with you!

[x] Talking to Aya
- [x] What has she been up to?
- [x] Inquire about her paper.

Also, see if we can look into having a slumber party again. Mmm...slumber parties.
>> No. 172950
File 137626932290.jpg - (163.74KB , 850x850 , 0bed663c5b99a7d1e9e46a2a00ab5f5b.jpg ) [iqdb]
172950
[x] Talk to Reimu!
- [x] Ask about her personally?
- [x] Maybe she can go shopping with you!

[x] Talking to Aya
- [x] What has she been up to?
- [x] Inquire about her paper.

- - -

Chuckling in amusement you take a bite of a cracker before speaking, “I am lucky to have such amusing friends. For a change of pace, I've been thinking Reimu... I don't actually know that much about you, like... personally, I guess.”

The shrine maiden looked at you oddly, her head slightly tilted, “Personally?”

“Yeah! Personally. It's like... you're my friend, but I feel I don't know that much about you actually. Growing up, your job... things like that.”

Reimu nodded her head, placing a hand behind her to prop her up as she reclined slightly, “Well... there's not a lot to say I guess.”

“Ah come on Reimu, don't be so evasive! You and me both know there's stuff to say about you.” stated Aya matter-of-factly.

The brown-haired girl stared at the tengu, her lips twitching into a frown, before she sighed and looked at you, “Alright. Well, I am the Hakurei shrine maiden of Gensokyo. I think a title some have given me is 'shrine maiden of paradise', or some such. My job basically boils down to protecting Gensokyo itself – if someone tries to do anything that threatens Gensokyo, I have to go fix it. We call them incidents, and it's been a while since we've had any,” she pauses to drink her tea, “Not that I'm complaining, I prefer it when it's quiet around here.

“I... don't have much to say about my growing up. It was just a lot of training and educating, learning how to fight and use the yin-yang orbs... the rules of Gensokyo, things like that. Pretty boring actually, but it was kind of important to my job I guess.” Reimu shrugged, returning her propped arm to the table and leaning forward again, “That's really about it. It's a big job, and well, I'm stuck with it. Probably forever.”

“Forever...? That's a pretty long time.” you sigh and shake your head, “What about your parents? Now that I think about it, I've never actually seen anyone resembling parents around the shrine.”

Reimu smirked and chuckled, “It's a mystery to me too Reina. I don't even remember my mom, let alone a father. I used to ask Yukari when I was growing up, but she wouldn't tell me either. No one really will.” as she finished her sentence, her gaze drifted to the tengu, who glanced away.

You had the feeling there was something to that statement, but it wasn't something you seemed privy to... or maybe it was just the two of them disagreeing with one another. Kind of tough to say. Still, seemed Reimu had it pretty rough, and the mystery around her parents was a little unsettling. But, you didn't feel like you should try to pry, after all, the shrine maiden had no reason to lie to you anyway, and the shrine showed no signs of any real other permanent inhabitants.

“Okay, thank you Reimu. I feel like I got to know you a lot better just from that. Now then, I've grilled Reimu,” you say with a chuckle, “now I'm going to ask you something Aya. How have you been recently?”

“Oh sure, ask her such an easy question...” remarks the girl with a sly smirk.

“Well, it's been pretty slow for me. Most of it was spent filing paperwork on your behalf... which, actually reminds me. You actually had more money but well,” the tengu sighed, throwing her hands up, “when I was going through the process, the powers that be kind of took a cut out of it all. See, they are apparently kind of fed up of Yukari bypassing all the rules and fees by just plopping your house down there. So, they went and deducted a bunch of fees and everything.

“I'm glad I'm a reporter, I don't have to get involved with all that darn bureaucracy. I tried my best to get them to wave it, but trust me, they were pretty insistent. Seems they've sent Yukari formal complaints, but she just ignores them all, and they're feeling like she thinks she doesn't have to obey the rules.”

“That's because she is. Let's face it, they can't do anything to her, even if they tried.” retorted Reimu with a snort.

The tengu laughed and flashed a grin, “Yeah, they really can't. Still, I'm pretty annoyed at them. I considered writing a scathing report about it, but I think they'd take offense to that, and since I kind of live and operate out there... I guess I better not go clipping any wings.”

“I think you did a wonderful job either way. I'm sure if I had done it, it would've gone far worse...”

“Oh without a doubt. You'd been arrested probably. I am ashamed to admit it, but the mountain really hates outsiders. If I wanted to bring you there one day, I'd need to fill out paperwork and everything... it's a huge pain.”

You chuckled and then turned your gaze towards Reimu, eyes flashing with a sudden thought, “Ah, that reminds me! You and me should go shopping sometimes. Aya got my finances taken care of, and well... you probably actually know places to go in the village to shop! It doesn't have to be today or something but, well... I mean, if it isn't an inconvenience!”

Reimu seemed surprised, her eyes widening slightly as she glanced away, seemingly in thought. She paused for a few heartbeats before replying, “Well, I don't do too much shopping myself. But... okay, sure. Maybe not today but... tomorrow perhaps. I'll just swing by your house and we can go. I'll make sure they don't try and rip you off.”

“Perfect then, it's a date!” you declare happily, chuckling as you help yourself to another cracker and some more tea.

“I think Reimu is pretty happy to hear that...” teased the tengu slyly.

“Actually, speaking of a scathing report about annoying officials, how is the Bunbunmaru doing Aya?”

The tengu seemed to be surprised by this statement as well, an eyebrow raised curiously as she looked at you, “Oh, well uhm... you know. It's still got readers, and I'm still publishing it. Maybe I should actually get a poll on what my readers think... as much as Reimu doesn't like incidents, they do make it hard to keep coming up with good articles. I think I've exhausted most of the obvious interviews I can have with you as well.”

“Well, if you can think of one and I'm not busy, I'll be happy to oblige. Maybe you can ask Remilia if you can get some kind of article done on something I've done for her or some such.”

Aya took a sip of her tea, her brow furrowed slightly, “Actually, that might not be such a bad idea... I might look into following up on that.”

“Careful Reina, if you're so nice to her, she's never going to leave you alone.” said Reimu with a smirk.

“Great idea Reimu! I'll just have to ask to move in, and then I can be with her everyday.” retorted the tengu with a grin, even as the shrine maiden shot her a chilly glare.

“Speaking of moving into a place... how long are you planning on staying? I mean, not that I don't dislike your company and all that! But if you intend to say... stay the night or something... well, maybe I need to set aside a room... or two.” she glanced at Aya as she said this, “Of course, if you have other plans...”

- - -

That's a good question...
[ ] Why not? Stay the night!
- [ ] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- - Now, how do pass the day?
- [ ] Ask for some training! (Danmaku, hand-to-hand, flying, mixed?)
- [ ] Why not just go shopping now? (Aya or no?)
- [ ] Play a game? (Write-in)
- [ ] Other
[ ] Not tonight, you're planning to...
- [ ] Go visit Remilia?
- [ ] Return home to do...? (write-in)
- [ ] Seek out Yuuka
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other
>> No. 172951
[ ] Why not? Stay the night!
- [ ] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [ ] Play truth or dare.

Also, spin the bottle is an acceptable alternative to truth or dare.

That or seven minutes in heaven.
>> No. 172952
[x] Why not? Stay the night!
- [x] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [x] Play spin the bottle.

I dare to dream.
>> No. 172953
[x] Why not? Stay the night!
- [x] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [x] Why not just go shopping now? (Ask Aya if she wants to come with)
>> No. 172969
[ ] Why not? Stay the night!
- [ ] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [ ] Play truth or dare.

This always ends well.
>> No. 172976
[x] Why not? Stay the night!
- [x] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
If yes,
- [x] Play spin the bottle or Truth or Dare with everyone.
If no,
[x] Go shopping now with Reimu.
>> No. 172977
[c] Why not? Stay the night!
- [c] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [c] Play truth or dare.
>> No. 172997
[ ] Why not? Stay the night!
- [ ] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [ ] Play 7 minutes in Heaven.
>> No. 173028
[x] Why not? Stay the night!
[x] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
[x] Play 7 minutes in Heaven
>> No. 173032
[x] Why not? Stay the night!
- [x] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
If yes,
- [x] Play spin the bottle or Truth or Dare with everyone.
>> No. 173035
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173035
[ ] Why not? Stay the night!
- [ ] Ask Aya if she wants to stay as well.
- [ ] Play truth or dare.

- - -

You hadn't really planned that far ahead... but, well, you did come out here in the first place to sped some time with a close friend, so... why not? Can't hurt to stay the night.

“I'll stay the night then, if you're offering Reimu. I don't really have any other plans, so I guess this is a nice impromptu one.” you flashed the girl a smile before turning your attention to Aya, “Do you want to stay as well? I'm sure Reimu doesn't mind.”

The crow tengu tapped her chin, glancing at the shrine maiden and then to you before she responded, “Well... normally I'd decline, but... sure, I'll stay the night. I'll have to leave pretty early, but I'm not going to turn down a rare moment of hospitality from Reimu and Reina!”

“In that case, excuse me, I'll have to see about finding some futons for you both to sleep on, we can sort out sleeping arrangements later.” declared Reimu, leaving the room in short order.

“It's still pretty early in the day, how are you exactly thinking of passing the day? Although, lounging around on the kotatsu isn't too bad...”

You shrug and take a drink of your tea, “I'm sure we can think of something. There's no such thing as a bad day spent with friends! Besides, there's nothing to do at my house anyway... no work, and no entertainment.”

Aya chuckled and gestured around, “Not that the Hakurei shrine is exactly full of much entertainment either. But from what I remember, you come up with some of the most amusing and interesting ways to pass the time, so I'm looking forward to it.”

“Oh, now I have some kind of reputation to live up to.” you reply with a smirk.

“Maybe just a little bit of one. I still remember that card game, I'm still hoping to maybe actually win one of those sometimes...”

You rack your memory for a moment, trying to recall the card game Aya was speaking of... it took a few moments, but you recalled a particular strip poker game involving you, her, Reimu, Yuuka, Marisa, and Alice from months back. That was quite a while ago...

“Well, I'm not promising anything Aya. Maybe I'll actually think of making some kind of lunch... I'm sure Reimu has something in here to cook with...”

The black-haired youkai laughed, “Maybe some sacks of rice and crackers... Reimu isn't exactly known for having much in stock.”

~

Aya's statement turned out to be rather true. As Reimu sheepishly revealed, about the only thing in stock in the shrine was copious amounts of rice, some snack foods, and lots of sake. The kitchen was also very simple, but you still managed to make some decent rice balls... you thought of making fried rice, but the shrine maiden couldn't even think of where she had anything like a frying pan. When you had inquired where she got all the rice from, she replied that rice was pretty much free around here – the farmers grew enough to feed everyone, so they just sent it off to everyone. You had to assume it was a pretty good way to ensure no one went hungry, but it seemed if you wanted something more then rice, you had to pay for it.

And well, Reimu was never known for having much in the way of money.

After the light, but still enjoyable lunch, the three of you found yourself lounging around the kotatsu merely idly chatting as usual, it was during all this that Aya again approached the topic of entertainment. You had been thinking about it for a little bit, so when she asked you had an answer for her.

“How about truth or dare? That's something pretty simple and straightforward to do.”

“Truth or dare?” responded Reimu quizzically.

“It's pretty self-explanatory Reimu. You just have someone ask 'truth or dare', you pick one and well... then they answer! If you said truth, they'll ask you a question and you have to tell the truth... if you pick dare, they'll instead dare you to do something. Which you have to do, of course.” replied Aya quickly with a grin.

The shrine maiden shot the tengu a glance and frown, “I knew what it was! I was just kind of surprised to hear it suggested. I guess it's pretty harmless... well, I guess since Reina suggested it, she should start.”

The tengu nodded her head, “I think that sounds fair. Then after her... maybe me, then you? You know, human, youkai, and then human! Then we can loop back.”

“Yeah, yeah I guess that's fine...” said Reimu with a shrug, “Alright, so I guess you'll start us off Reina.”

- - -

Truth or dare huh...
[ ] Well, you know what to do! (write-in)

- - -

I HAVE NO IDEA HOW I'M GONNA DO THIS. This'll be fun in its own way, I'm sure. To prevent a bunch of tiny updates with almost no content, I would like to request you also set a kind of stance of how Reina will answer, to her own inquiries (basically, will she be more truth, or more dare, etc. etc.)
>> No. 173040
[x] Okay, let's have Reina be daring for a change!

And then Aya dares her to take it all off...
>> No. 173052
>>173040
I was more hoping for an opening truth/dare, and then the general mood for Reina to take when asked herself.

I'm already going to have a hard time thinking up some without just a few paragraphs update for more votes!
>> No. 173054
>>173052

Oh. Well, then:

[x] Dare Aya to run outside and roll around in the snow.
[x] Let Reina be a little courageous this time, and willing to go along with dares.
>> No. 173055
File 137644669924.jpg - (9.98KB , 211x205 , reimu facepalm.jpg ) [iqdb]
173055
[ ] Ask Reimu if she's got a significant other, and if she doesn't, who she's got her eye on.
--[ ] Refusal Condition Dare: Tickle Aya without getting her shit slapped.
>> No. 173068
[X] Ask Aya to tell us about her ROMANTIC EXPERIENCE.
--[X] Refusal Condition Dare: Tickle Reimu without getting her shit slapped.
>> No. 173075
>>173055
this
>> No. 173083
File 137653579731.jpg - (427.14KB , 663x825 , 019c2a72dbd41a58be85eb524fdddb38.jpg ) [iqdb]
173083
[ ] Ask Reimu if she's got a significant other, and if she doesn't, who she's got her eye on.
--[ ] Refusal Condition Dare: Tickle Aya without getting her shit slapped.

- - -

It was a big honor and risk to be the first one to ask in truth or dare. Probably because it kind of set the whole mood and tone, but well you had suggested the game in the first place, so it made sense you would be the one to start... you sat in silence for a brief moment, considering your options until you pointed a finger at the shrine maiden.

“Truth or dare.” you asked pointingly.

Reimu flinched slightly, as if surprised, her response was after a brief second of hesitation, “Truth?”

“Aww, boring way to start us off Reimu. You should've opened with dare! That's where all the fun is.”

“Then you ask for a dare when it happens Aya.” retorted the girl with a snap.

It was a pretty boring way to start the game, but it wasn't too unexpected. It was the safe option after all. Too bad for Reimu you already had a question in mind!

“Alright then Reimu, I've got a two-parter, so here's the first part... do you have a significant other?”

The Hakurei shrine maiden's eyes widened in surprise and she recoiled in surprise, “W-what?! That's your question?” sputtered the girl.

You nodded in response, “Yup! Well, part of it. Come on, give us an answer!”

“N-no of course not. That's pretty obvious, I mean, come on have you ever seen me going on something like a date?” replied Reimu hastily, running a hand through her hair.

“Yeah, I guess that's true. Still I wanted to confirm it, because now you've opened yourself up for the follow-up truth!” you point dramatically at the shrine maiden, “Then, as you don't have a significant other, do you have your eye on someone?

If Reimu had looked surprised before, she looked like you had reached out and punched her square in the face this time. The tengu was too busy laughing off to the side to appreciate the range of emotions playing across the shrine maiden's shocked face. Judging by her voiceless response so far, you got the feeling she was completely unprepared for this.

“If you don't want to answer, then you have to do a punishment dare instead.” you state matter-of-factly, “Which I have planned for. You either answer who you have your eye on, or you have to tickle Aya without her beating you away. Let's say for like... thirty seconds...?”

If Aya had heard your dare, you couldn't say – she was still busy laughing – but the red-white was staring at you, then her eyes slowly creeping off to the side... and in a single, fluid motion the girl jumped and lunged across the kotatsu to pin the laughing tengu and her hands moved to mercilessly attack the already laughing crow. Judging by the increased volume of the reporter's laughter and the wild flailing she was doing, you had to guess she was either very ticklish, or maybe Reimu was just a really good tickler.

That or the act was making her laugh even harder. You didn't have a watch or anything handy, but after probably around thirty seconds, Reimu ceased her actions and withdrew from the tengu, whom by now was reduced to a breathless, red-faced mess. To her credit, the shrine maiden's face was also bright red, so maybe she had actually put up some resistance, you couldn't say.

It took the black-haired youkai a few moments to regain her composure, before she sat up at the table, “Whew. Wow, that's one hell of a way to start this little game off. Now I'm pretty curious as to who little Reimu likes... she must like someone, or she wouldn't have taken that punishment dare.”

The expression on Reimu's face seemed to indicate she hadn't guessed that by taking the dare, she was in a way, admitting that she did have her eye on someone but just wasn't willing to admit it. You had to admit, you were rather curious now yourself... you knew Yukari and her seemed to be rather close, but in that kind of way? Well, it wasn't really your concern and the shrine maiden didn't seem to be willing to share anyway.

“Now how do I follow that up...” the tengu rubbed her chin for a moment, “Okay, I'll spare Reimu for now. Reina! Truth or dare?”

You considered it for a moment before flashing a grin, “Dare!”

Aya's eyes lit up as she looked at you with an amused smirk, “Oh ho, very daring of you! Well then... alright here's an easy one for ya: kiss me.” declared the tengu with a grin, pointing at herself.

- - -

Maybe you should've seen the most stereotypical dare coming...
[ ] She didn't really say WHERE... so kiss her on the cheek!
[ ] Such a vague dare, so you'll just kiss her on the forehead!
[ ] Maybe you can kiss her on the nose?
[ ] … Lips.
[ ] Refuse! (You will automatically be at the mercy of the follow-up dare)
- Remain daring, or go truthful after?

- - -

Okay not sure if this is the BEST way to handle it, but I didn't want to really automate too much of this.
>> No. 173084
[ ] She didn't really say WHERE...
-[ ] Take her hand and kiss it
--[ ] On one knee

Hah. That'll throw her off balance!
>> No. 173086
[X] Apply directly to the forehead
>> No. 173087
[c] …Lips.
- [c] …with some tonguing.
>> No. 173097
[X] … Lips.
She's probably expecting Reina to get flustered. Let's surprise her.
>> No. 173100
[x] Lean forward as though you were about to kiss her on the lips, then kiss her on the cheek at the last moment.
>> No. 173105
>>173100
That actually seems like the best idea.
>> No. 173107
[X] … Lips.
Do want
>> No. 173108
[x] Lean forward as though you were about to kiss her on the lips, then kiss her on the cheek at the last moment.
>> No. 173109
[x] Lean forward as though you were about to kiss her on the lips, then kiss her on the cheek at the last moment
>> No. 173116
[X] Apply directly to the forehead.

Love it!
>> No. 173128
File 137661547040.jpg - (111.98KB , 640x640 , 5916362251fddaeacb2ee5b5a799d5f3.jpg ) [iqdb]
173128
[x] Lean forward as though you were about to kiss her on the lips, then kiss her on the cheek at the last moment

- - -

Well, you had to expect the most obvious and stereotypical dare would come up sooner or later. Still, Aya had been awfully vague about the dare, and as anyone who played much truth or dare knew, vagueness meant the daree had a lot of leeway in what they could do!

Faking a sigh, you made your way over to the grinning tengu, looking her square in the face. You slowly and carefully started to lean forward, inching your face closer and closer to Aya's, your lips lined up for an imminent kiss.

The amused twinkle in the black-haired youkai's eyes suggested she was quite pleased with this situation... and as your lips nearly touched, you quickly changed direction and instead landed a kiss right on her cheek. You pull away with a chuckle and smirk.

“You didn't say where to kiss you. Nice try though Aya.”

The youkai threw up her arms and let out an exaggerated sigh, “Daring and crafty! Touche, Reina, touche. I'll have to make sure I'm more specific next time.”

As you returned to your seat, you noted Reimu's face was rather red, but quickly fading. You had to briefly wondered what got her all worked up. Either way...

“Alright Reimu, now it's your turn to pick.”

The shrine maiden seemed to snap out of a daze, “Ah! Well... okay then Aya, truth or dare?”

“Do I detect some bitterness in that request?” teased the crow, “Dare! I can take anything you dish out.”

Reimu seemed unphased by the jab and stared at the tengu, “I'm daring you to go get some sake for tonight. Your own choice.”

Aya broke into laughter and shook her head, “I don't think that's how the game really works but... well, alright I can do that. I'll be back before you know it!”

With that the crow quickly left the room, leaving just you and Reimu there in an uneasy silence. After a pause, she looked at you.

“That's probably not how the game works, is it?”

You flashed her a grin, “Well, I guess it's not unheard of to dare someone to go get something...”

“Eh, oh well. I'd rather use her own sake then my own anyway.”

The two of you idly chatted for a little while, but it didn't feel like too long until you heard a door open and the triumphant crow returned, bearing gifts. She jokingly poked fun at Reimu that her dare was pretty vague, and she wasn't even given directions on what kind, or how much sake to get! Still, Aya had procured several bottles of varying kinds of sake, and the shrine maiden seemed pleased either way.

Despite the addition of alcohol to the mix, the game didn't really seem to change. Innocent dares were exchanged, and some awkward questions posed... you couldn't help but notice the two seemed to be stuck on daring or truthing one another though. You didn't really have a clue why, but it did give you a front row seat to watching the two bicker and fight.

Eventually the afternoon gave way to the evening and the little game had winded down. You were also pretty sure both of your friends had drank at least a bottle or two – Aya had even left at a point to buy more. Judging by their continued actions, this amount of alcohol was normal for both of them, you hadn't really been drinking much though.

“Well, I think I'm completely out of ways to tease Reimu. It was a pretty fun game...” admitted Aya, taking a drink of sake.

The shrine maiden glared at the tengu, “Yeah, yeah sure. I guess it wasn't too bad though. Outsiders have some weird games...”

“Actually, I think we have this one too. Just usually kids play it. Maybe you need to get out more.”

“... Shut up Aya. Anyway!” Reimu slammed back her cup of sake, “Alright, well, I think we need some new entertainment. Otherwise, I think I'm going to have a nice dip in the hot spring...”

- - -

Evening came so quickly!
[ ] Suggest new evening entertainment? (write-in)
[ ] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
- [ ] Invite Aya?
[ ] Do something with Aya while Reimu bathes? (write-in)
[ ] Other?

- - -

Sorry to end the truth and dare so soon.
>> No. 173131
[x] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
- [x] Invite Aya?

If possible, have a little bit of a water fight. Everyone loves a water fight after you're all clean and happy. Also, don't forget to help each other wash hard to reach places!
>> No. 173132
[x] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
- [x] Invite Aya?

excellent thinking anon
>> No. 173133
[x] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
- [x] Invite Aya?

I can go along with this.
>> No. 173156
[x] "Sounds good to me reimu!"
>> No. 173157
[X] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
-[X] Invite Aya?

Sure, why not?
>> No. 173182
File 137677683269.png - (109.19KB , 640x480 , 9acfbedeaa423c17a6f858035917b822.png ) [iqdb]
173182
[x] Ask to go take a bath with Reimu.
- [x] Invite Aya?

- - -

“Well, it's not new entertainment, but I think a bath might sound pretty good... if you're not against some company, that is.”

The red-white considered her empty sake cup for a moment before shrugging, “I don't have a problem with it.”

“Do you mind if Aya can come as well?” you ask carefully.

“... I suppose that's only fair. No flash photography tengu, I see a flash, and you'll be exterminated faster then you fly.”

“I didn't bring a waterproof camera anyway!” replied Aya with a grin, cringing slightly as Reimu's glare stabbed at her, “I was joking! I don't own one, really, I don't!”

It had been a while since you had visitied the shrine, but you still recalled the hot spring was somewhere out back... and it wasn't hard to find it, even if Reimu wasn't guiding you, as you could faintly see the steam rising from it even in the evening. As you had remembered, the hot spring was still surrounded by a large wooden fence to block prying eyes, and even had a small changing room marking the entrance and exit to it.

Reimu had remarked the room already had towels and robes to wear following bathing, so there wasn't any real need to worry about a change of clothes... even if it was even colder at night, you had to figure the dip in a hot spring would cancel it out, and it was a quick walk back to the shrine and the warmth of the kotatsu.

The shrine maiden went in first, then Aya, and lastly yourself. It was pretty handy that the changing room even had little cubbies to store all your belongings in... your gaze lingered on the grimoire sitting atop your clothes. No, it'd be fine, you were only going a short distance away from it and you weren't really sure if it was waterproof anyway.

With that out of the way, you quickly grabbed a towel and rushed into the hot waters of the spring, before the chilly evening air nipped at your bare skin too much. The effect was immediate and gratifying, it was like the kotatsu but for your whole body!

You noted everyone had kind of opted to sit in their own little areas, Reimu was off to your right, and Aya to your left... they both seemed to be enjoying themselves, but you wondered why they choose to sit so far apart.

“It might be nice to have a hot spring in your backyard.” you offer casually.

Reimu seems to consider your words for a moment before responding, “I guess it is. It's a lot nicer then a traditional bath, and you don't ever have to worry about... well, preparing for it.”

“A hot spring is just better then a normal bath! Just more relaxing, and this pleasant heat...” chimed in Aya, letting out a satisfied sigh as she stretched, “It's just perfect. You can just sit out here, soak in the waters, look up at the sky...”

“I guess. It's not so good on a rainy day though, so I guess there's a downside to it.” pointed out the shrine maiden.

The tengu squinted at the girl, frowning, “Come on, don't look on the downsides, just look at the positives! Also this is way more social then a bath!”

“You say that when you're all off on your own.” you counter slyly.

The black-haired youkai blinks in surprise, seemingly unaware of the situation until you pointed out. She laughs and shakes her head, she then casually moves her way over to you, “Ah so true Reina, so true! I guess I should listen to my own words... come on Reimu, don't go sittin' off by yourself!”

Reimu seemed offput by the suggestion but after a moment she let out a wistful sigh and moved to join you as well, “Yeah, I guess if we're all going to bathe at once, we may as well be social about it. Hey Reina, how about I wash your back...?”

“Oh, oh if you get to wash her back, then she gets to wash mine! And then ah, I guess one of us can wash yours after.” offered Aya, a happy grin plastered on her face.

You chuckled and humbly accepted. This was all a pretty new experience to you, but you could really see the appeal in friends all sharing a spring like this. It was nice to have someone wash your back as well, since it was pretty hard to reach on your own! And somehow, having someone else's hands work your back just felt, so, so much better... judging by the way Aya made the occasional little sound as you scrubbed her back, only seemed to compound it.

With your own back cleaned, and Aya's as well, the tengu humbly suggested you wash Reimu's back in return – giving the shrine maiden a comforting recommendation that you were quite good at it. You weren't too sure about that, of course but... you had to guess you were, since the red-white seemed quite relaxed with your work.

After everyone had tended to cleaning, the three of you merely sat and relaxed, chatting... and Aya had sneak off to get some sake to even drink in the hot spring, saying how sometimes the heat of the bath made the flavor better. You were still a bit wary of getting too heavy into the drinking though...

“Ah, this is a good way to spend a day...” commented Aya with a content sigh, “Hey, how are we going to do the sleeping arrangements Reimu?”

“Well, I have enough futons for everyone, so I guess it just depends on if everyone wants their own room or something. The shrine has enough rooms either way...”

The youkai nodded her head vigorously, taking a deep drink of sake, “Well, in that case, I wouldn't mind sharing a room with Reina!”

Reimu cast a sidelong glance at the youkai before responding, “If she wants to, you can.”

- - -

Sleeping arrangements huh...
[ ] Accept Aya's offer
[ ] Politely decline.
- [ ] You'll just sleep on your own
- [ ] Ask if Reimu will share a room?
[ ] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!
[ ] Other?
>> No. 173183
[ ] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!

Once we're in the room together, we need to braid each others hair and talk about our dreams.
>> No. 173208
[X] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!
>> No. 173219
>>173183
this
>> No. 173221
[X] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!

This is so sickeningly sweet.
>> No. 173227
[X] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!
>> No. 173228
[X] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!

At first I was gonna vote for Sleep with Reimu instead. But I'll just leave that up to Yuuka.
>> No. 173235
[X] Accept Aya's offer

Well, she's the one who seized the initiative here.
>> No. 173245
File 137696921094.jpg - (1.85MB , 3072x2304 , This_is_totally_touhou.jpg ) [iqdb]
173245
[X] Counter the offer! Reimu can sleep in the room too!

- - -

Sleeping arrangements were pretty important... you hadn't really thought about it until now, and you cupped your chin in thought for some moments, as you mulled over your options. Reimu had said the shrine was big enough for everyone to have their own room, but that seemed to kind of defeat the purpose of having anyone stay overnight! After all, why have all this fun hanging out if everyone retreated to an individual room after?

Aya had already pounced on the chance to room with you, and while you didn't mind her offer, that would leave the shrine maiden by herself – which just went back to the whole hanging out thing. Unacceptable!

“I have a better idea Aya,” you declare, “Reimu gets to sleep in the room too. Deal?”

The tengu blinks in surprise and chuckles, “Well, if she is fine with that offer, I can't see a reason to decline... a shame I cannot hog you to myself that way though.” replied Aya with an exaggerated shrug.

Reimu seemed to mull your offer over for a moment before nodding, “Alright, I guess I can live with sleeping in the same room as Aya for a night.”

“Ouch, so cold Reimu... acting like spending time with me is such a bother!”

“I do get the feeling you haven't really gotten yourself the best reputation in Gensokyo, Aya...” you remark teasingly.

The youkai clutches at her chest, with a look of pain on her face, “Argh, now Reina too! So cold! Even the hot springs cannot warm up the daggers in my heart!”

“She's such a drama queen sometimes, isn't she? Well, I'll just have a bit more sake, then I'll go set us up a room, I can think of one that can fit three futons...”

~

You and Aya only remained in the hot spring for perhaps a few ten's of minutes after Reimu left, although the evening air nipped at you as soon as you got out of the warmth of the spring, the two of you had still opted to wear bathrobes and simply hurried on inside the shrine before the wind could take too many bites out of you.

Before either of you had to go searching for the red-white girl, she found the two of you and gestured for you to follow. While you had considered taking comfort in the kotatsu, it was probably a good idea to at least see where you'd be sleeping tonight.

While every room in the shrine looked pretty similar to you, this one was a bit larger then the rest and Reimu had already laid out three futons in the room.

“Well, there you have it. Nothing special, I know but... well, who wants which? I mean, they're all the same but...” the girl trailed off and shrugged.

Aya cupped her chin in thought for a moment, “I think Reina should get the middle one, then me and you can use the left or right! You know, this way we both get to share in equal distance to Reina.”

Reimu fixed the crow with an odd, blank stare, “... Right. Sure, that's... completely what I was planning when I laid out three futons.” she sighed and shook her head, “Do you agree with Aya's insanity? It's really up to you, I'm fine with any of them.”

- - -

Well, let's see...
[ ] Aya's suggestion seems sound.
[ ] Actually... (write-in)
[ ] … How about you share a futon?
- [ ] Reimu?
- [ ] Aya?
- [ ] … Does she have an even bigger futon for all of you at once!?
>> No. 173246
[X] Aya's suggestion seems sound.

It'll work. Better than sharing, I think.
>> No. 173258
[X] Aya's suggestion seems sound.
>> No. 173262
[X] Aya's suggestion seems sound.


And then Reina wakes up in the morning with both Aya and Reimu having crept closer in their sleep, unconsciously fighting each other over her and they all end up in a tangled mess.
>> No. 173314
[x] … Does she have an even bigger futon for all of you at once!?
>> No. 173324
File 137718521644.jpg - (114.69KB , 850x638 , sample-b206803e688c58188c6fdcda7651e281.jpg ) [iqdb]
173324
[X] Aya's suggestion seems sound.

- - -

“I guess there's really no problem with that arrangement.” you admit with a shrug.

The tengu does a happy little hop with a grin plastered on her face, “I knew you'd agree Reina! Kind of a shame I'll probably be gone before any of you wake up, the paper doesn't print itself after all...”

“I guess you're dedicated to your job at least, even if I don't think anyone would even notice...”

“She's so cold Reina, so, so cold...” said Aya, shivering for effect.

“Now, now you two play nice...”

The futon wasn't as comfortable as your own bed, but you weren't sure if this was really the futon's fault – you weren't really used to sleeping on the floor after all, and you had to imagine you were rather biased towards how your own bed felt, given you had been sleeping in it for years.

Reimu had said she'd go shopping with you tomorrow, so you had that to look forward to... although, you weren't really sure what you'd need. Your home already had everything you needed, but... well, there wasn't any point in really dwelling on it without seeing what you could get. The village wasn't something you were overly knowledgeable on after all!

“This was a pretty fun night. We should do it again sometime.” you comment offhand.

Reimu lets out a sigh, but her tone sounds happy, “Yeah, I guess it was. It's a lot nicer when it isn't some big huge party, with a bunch of freeloaders who just leave a mess for me to clean up...”

“Aw come on Reimu, you know you love it! Okay, maybe not the cleaning part, but you love the party part!”

“Please, even the party part has problems! No one ever wants to come to a shrine that is always teeming with youkai every month or two.”

The crow laughed, “Maybe you need better worshippers then. Us youkai are pretty cool, after all, it's not like all of us go around trying to eat people.”

“Too bad the ones that do are the ones people are afraid of...”

“Well, I guess you kind of have a point there... but really, you humans need to loosen up a bit. Not every youkai out there is a gaping maw of teeth and a tornado of claws waiting to rend your flesh from your body and feast upon your innards.”

“Yeah, not all of them, but there are some. And that's reason enough for people to want to stay in the village anyway.”

“... You two have the oddest conversations sometimes.” you remark awkwardly.

~

It was odd to not be awoken by an alarm, or even the rays of the sun deciding to try and roast you in your bed. You weren't sure what time it was when you did wake up – but you were a bit saddened to confirm that Aya was indeed gone already, her bathrobe and futon neatly tucked away, with a note attached explaining she did have a paper to print in the morning after all!

She did include a little PS saying she'd love to drop by again in the afternoon, and she'd keep her eyes peeled in the village for signs of you or Reimu – failing that, she'd stop by your house. You somehow imagined that's not something Reimu would be too pleased with, but given she had to leave fairly early, it's not like she could've asked permission you suppose...

Speaking of the shrine maiden, she was still soundly asleep it seemed. For being the great Hakurei shrine maiden, the brown-haired girl looked just like any other young woman when she was asleep... kind of cute, actually. You had to resist the urge to poke her cheek or wake her up, if she wanted to sleep in, it wasn't your job to wake her!

Quietly creeping out of the room, taking a moment to gather up your clothes, you excused yourself from the room and changed, before deciding to surprise Reimu with something to eat once she woke up. The appalling simplicity of the shrine's kitchen still hampered your efforts to do little but produce some rice balls though. You had considered making some tea as well, but you weren't really sure how te red-white liked her tea, so you decided to leave that for her.

Almost as if one cue, you heard the rattle of a door sliding open, then shut, and footsteps approaching the kitchen, a fully dressed Reimu appearing. Her eyes instantly wandered to the rice balls on the table.

“I was going to make some tea as well, but I don't really know how you like your tea...” you admit with a chuckle.

Reimu gives you an amused look and a smile, “You really didn't have to even do this you know Reina. Still, I appreciate the gesture. Well, I promised we'd go out to the village today, so did you have anywhere in mind?”

“I think I've only been to the village a handful of times, so I'm not really sure what I can even do there.”

The shrine maiden started to fix herself some tea before she responded, “Pretty much anything you can think of probably. The village is pretty much the trade hub of Gensokyo, if it's made and sold, you can buy it there. You probably can't buy much in the way of your modern outsider goods, but aside from fancy electronics or something... pretty much anything you can think of.”

Well, that gave you a few ideas... maybe. You still didn't think you really needed anything, but on the other hand, money that wasn't spent or something, was completely useless after all...

- - -

Where to go...
[ ] You can always go grocery shopping!
[ ] Maybe you can look into getting a kotatsu...
[ ] Is there someone to buy things for your work, maybe?
[ ] Other? (write-in)
>> No. 173325
[X] Is there someone to buy things for your work, maybe?

We do run a business, after all.
>> No. 173338
[x] Maybe you can look into getting a kotatsu...
>> No. 173345
[3] You can always go grocery shopping!
[2] Maybe you can look into getting a kotatsu...
[1] Is there someone to buy things for your work, maybe?

Shopping Spree!!
>> No. 173380
I'm going to be reformatting my computer soon, to upgrade to a 64-bit windows OS.

In the meantime, this is why the updates are kind of delayed as I've been thinking of what files I can back up and such, and which I'll need to painfully redownload.

Also not a clear real cut lead for the shopping... I could have a short-ish update briefly introducing the most popular shops, and do it that way (instead of having a post per shop)?
>> No. 173408
Goddammit kriss. Just do a full back up and delete things later. Copy your applications list into a txt file if you think you'll need to redownload apps.
>> No. 173426
File 137764554361.png - (480.62KB , 800x800 , 7df219e6a8713d5fdbf0f30e2a354345.png ) [iqdb]
173426
Taking the top two.

[X] Is there someone to buy things for your work, maybe?
[x] Maybe you can look into getting a kotatsu...

- - -

The shrine maiden paused in thought for a few moments, before responding to your suggestions, “Well, we don't really have a tool store around here, but the blacksmith can probably handle that kind of thing. As for a kotatsu well,” the brown-haired girl smirked, “I figured you'd want one. I have an idea, so we'll see if it'll work out.”

Reimu extended her hand towards you, “We'll fly a little slow, but come on let's go. I'm not going to carry you the entire way, so you better remember your flight training!”

It had been a while since you really had practiced it but you were pretty certain you would remember it... you didn't mention this to her, of course, and just grinned and took her hand.

~

It had been a while since you had visited the village, but it still surprised you that while it was called a 'village' there was a certain hustle and bustle within its protective walls. In a way, the walls made you think of some kind of old-fashioned medieval town of sorts, even though the architecture of almost every building was distinctly Japanese.

Reimu had guided you towards a section of the village that seemed busier then the rest, and upon landing you could tell why – just by the scent of food, you pegged this area as likely housing most of the commerce in the village. It wasn't as busy as say, a modern mall or something, but there was definitely a good number of people walking about, and poking their heads into shops and stalls.

As the shrine maiden led you around, her gaze busy reading store names and such, you couldn't help but notice that eyes seemed to be drifting towards the two of you. It reminded you of when you were in the village with Yuuka, only the gazes at you seemed to be more ones of curiosity, then any kind of fear, you had to guess Reimu didn't come into the village all that often, let alone with company!

“Okay... I remember where to go now. I guess it's no surprise, but I don't shop all that much.” spoke up the shrine maiden suddenly, she pointed down the street, “I know a shop down there that can get you a kotatsu. As for tools...”

The brown-haired girl frowned for a moment, before pointing off in another direction, “That direction for a blacksmith. Or maybe the blacksmith, depending on how you look at it. Anyway, let me show you around them both, then you can decide if you want to buy anything or not. I know, it's a little bit roundabout, but we're not in a rush anyway.”

Heading further down the street, you were guided into the store that Reimu said would contain a kotatsu. Within you could definitely see various furniture laying about the store, but it seemed oddly empty – looking further into the room, you noticed a door in the back, and some stairs, so you had to guess most of the merchandise was stored out of the way, so that way the room wasn't so cluttered.

Not long after the two of you entered, you were greeted by a young girl clad in a kimono – you guessed she wasn't actually the owner, or even a crafter, but probably just someone hired to manage the counter, as it were.

“Hello there! Can I help you with anything?” she asked cheerfully, either obviously to who Reimu was, or deciding to not comment on it.

“I'm... we're, looking into getting a kotatsu. What do you have?” asked Reimu, straight to the point.

The kimono-clad girl considered for a moment before responding, glancing at you, “We do. However, judging by the way your friend is dressed, she is an outsider, right? I'm not sure anything we have will work in her house, without needing to remodel the room as well.”

“What do you mean by that?” you ask curiously.

“Regrettably, we can't provide much in the way of modern conveniences in the village, and the way our kotatsu work is still like the original ones, it involves having a pit in the floor and the table is over it. The only way to get a more modern one, that some people do own, would be to get it from the kappa, but they are notoriously picky about who they sell to... and then you also need to have the electricity for it as well.” the girl paused for another moment, “I've heard of some trying to find other ways to get around that problem, but regrettably we don't sell anything like that.”

The store girl dug around behind the counter, producing a sheet of paper, “Here's just a little list of some things we sell, if you're interested in other products. We can certainly sell you a kotatsu, but without some remodeling to a room, all you'd really be getting is a table with a quilt on it.”

You pocket the piece of paper before thanking the girl for her time and leaving. Immediately after, you find yourself almost dragged off to the next destination, the blacksmith. It probably made sense this was the best place to look into a tool thing after all.

This shop felt a lot smaller then the furniture store, although you could see a few rooms branching off from the main one. Unlike the 'furniture' store, you didn't actually see any merchandise on display in this one... but you did find yourself quickly confronted with a somewhat tall, yukata-clad woman.

“Why if it isn't Reimu, I haven't seen you down here in...” the woman frowned, “Well, a long time I guess. What brings you here? And whose your friend? I don't think I've ever seen you bring a friend...”

Reimu sighed, “A friend, alright don't go grilling her. I'll make this short and sweet, she's looking to maybe get some new tools made. She does some restoring work and - “

The yukata-clad woman snapped her fingers, “Ah, I've heard of her! Reina, I think? She's had her name mentioned from time to time... restoring work though? I don't know about those tools specifically, but there hasn't been anything I haven't been able to make!”

Before you could even respond, the woman dashed off and returned with some paper with some things hastily scribbled on it, “Rough estimate based upon what I would think someone would have for tools. It's of course a bit cheaper if you just give me your old tools and I fix them up all nice like, but it's your call. Either way, you're not going to see them for at least a few days.” the blacksmith glanced towards Reimu, “And you be a good friend to her, alright? And tell her to come by sometimes. She doesn't even visit anymore! Such a shame.”

Again, before you can say much Reimu says her farewell and practically drags you out, “Who is she?” you ask, as she pulls you out.

“Not important. But she's a good blacksmith, even if she doesn't look like it. I used to have her make me things before but, well, it just became easier to use things I didn't need replacing.” the shrine maiden paused, “Also, I felt bad having her make things for free. Believe it or not but she doesn't get that much work, things she makes are made to last... which doesn't really help her business, considering no one needs to repair anything that much.”

“Anyway, may as well look over your shopping lists. See if you want anything or not. I had kind of forgotten about the kotatsu thing actually... I have an electric one myself, but I had to fight with Yukari over it. She could do the same for you, but even I can't get the kappa to sell to you... they're really picky about that kind of thing.”

- - -

Shopping list!
- Kotatsu: 1 Yen
- New set of tools: 50 Sen (estimated)
- Repairing tools: 30 Sen (estimated)
- New dining set (4 chairs and table): 2 Yen
- Futon: 50 Sen

Decisions...
[ ] Purchase anything? (write-in)
[ ] Shop elsewhere?
[ ] Maybe you'll go take Reimu out somewhere...
[ ] Purchase anything for Reimu?
[ ] Other?

- - -

Yeah maybe not the best shopping list. Maybe next time I need to actually get more specifics before I have you all go shopping, so I can look up stuff...
>> No. 173427
[X] Purchase anything? (write-in)
-Repairing Tools

[X] Purchase something for Reimu?
-Is there some cute jewelry here? A nice matching set of pendant for both you and Reimu? If not we could alway buy the material to make some ourself.
>> No. 173428
[x] Maybe you'll go take Reimu out somewhere...
>> No. 173551
File 137809501328.jpg - (144.47KB , 666x935 , 50c1af4cea21de09c04c2aa18648a238.jpg ) [iqdb]
173551
[X] Purchase anything? (write-in)
-Repairing Tools

[X] Purchase something for Reimu?
-Is there some cute jewelry here? A nice matching set of pendant for both you and Reimu? If not we could alway buy the material to make some ourself.

- - -

Your own tools were rather well cared for if you had to say so yourself, and you didn't exactly need a shiny new set... after all, new tools don't really do anything different from a nicely used, but well-cared for set! And you didn't have a second pair of hands around the shop anyway. But perhaps getting someone else to give them a look over for some possible repairs may not be a bad idea...

“It's a shame about the kotatsu, but I guess winter will be over eventually anyway. But, that offer on fixing up my tools may not be a bad idea...”

Reimu nods, “Although, a kotatsu is even pretty nice on any somewhat cold day. Since I know you don't carry your tools with you everywhere, how about you just give me the coin, I'll fly to your house, gather 'em up and drop them off for you?” offered the shrine maiden with a smile, “I trust you can stay out of trouble for a little while without my expert guidance.”

“I think I can do that, if anything bad happens I'll make sure to scream and yell at the top of my lungs to alert you.” you counter with a grin, digging around in your pockets for the coin and a key to your house – although you suspect she'd find a way in regardless.

“Just kind of stay in the area, alright? I don't want to have to scour the whole village, and I don't want to make you just sit around twiddling your thumbs until I get back!” announced Reimu before giving a wave and departing.

With her gone, a thought had popped into your mind. While you hadn't thought of anything to buy for yourself, why not look into getting something for Reimu? It would be kind of weird to try and pass off gift shopping while she was present, but you should have a little bit of time... now, you didn't actually know if the village had a gift shop, but you were certain you could find something!

As your feet sent you traveling around the area, your mind raced with ideas – what kind of gift would be suitable for her? You were pretty sure just about anything would be nice for her, you still wanted something that seemed either useful, or maybe something she could actually wear and show? Maybe some kind of jewelry then? That wasn't your area of expertise in any means, but it certainly was a sort of accessory one could wear without it seeming unusual... and it was a bit nicer then buying her clothes or something.

You could always just buy something, but why not make something? That seemed far more personal after all! And you did know a thing or two about it... failing that, you could always fall back onto the grimoire. You had the material at home to make something as simple as the strings to a necklace, but you'd need something to actually make for it, after all no one would just wear a string around their neck.

As luck would have it however, your hurried searching and walking seemed to have yielded fruit, as you found yourself busily examining some stalls that were hawking various trinkets and objects, in addition to objects you could probably fashion into a kind of amulet, or necklace! Now... what kind of things would Reimu like? You had to make sure you picked something that looked nice, but also didn't seem too... gaudy probably. Something tasteful... something...

“You seem to be quite absorbed in your shopping, little flower.” spoke up a voice suddenly.

You jumped and whirled around, facing the source of the unknown voice – but of course, you actually knew who it was, even without the nickname. Standing behind you, a basket of flowers in one hand, was your friend Yuuka. A small smile was on her face as she looked at you.

“Ah, well, just a little bit I guess.” you admitted sheepishly.

“I take it you are perhaps shopping for a gift, of sorts? I saw you some minutes ago, but you seemed quite absorbed in your task and didn't notice me, I believe.” the flower youkai chuckled softly, “Is it for the shrine maiden?”

You blinked in surprise, taken aback a bit by Yuuka's guess, “Erm... actually, yeah it is. How did you guess?”

“I saw her fly off some time ago, and she rarely comes to the village for any reason... seeing you here, I can guess you and her came here together, likely she was showing you around, yes?” the green-haired woman shook her head, “But that is not important. I suspect you want this to remain a surprise, so time is of the essence. I confess, I do not know her well, but I would wager she would appreciate the thought behind the gift, more then the actual value of it.”

The flower youkai walked to your side, looking at the wares on display at the stall – you couldn't help but notice the owner seemed to tense slightly at this. She was silent for a few moments before responding.

“I would suggest making something to help remember a significant event. As I was not present for such things, I will leave it in your capable hands, little flower. I'm certain you can think of worthy events to try and memorialize in this gift.” she responded with a comforting smile.

A memorable event...? Well, there were a few that sprung to mind. With that in mind, certainly this stall, or one nearby, had to have something to do that!

- - -

There's got to be at least a few memorable events, worthy of a memento!
[ ] Learning to fly was pretty memorable! It involved Genji, but still...
- Small glass turtle shell: 30 Sen each/Some kind of feather: 5 Sen each
[ ] She was the first to teach you how to defend yourself...
- Multicolored bead... thing?: 50 Sen each/Small black bead: 5 Sen each
[ ] W-well, there was kind of that kiss...
- A red glass heart: 30 Sen each/Small locket with small canvas to draw on: 5 Sen each
[ ] On second thought, maybe you don't really need to buy anything...
[ ] Other

Feel free to use 'other' as an excuse to chat with Yuuka if you like.
>> No. 173556
Hmm. I get the feeling hearts would be moving a little fast for Reimu.

But maybe I am just being paranoid.
>> No. 173569
[X] She was the first to teach you how to defend yourself...
- Multicolored bead... thing?: 50 Sen each/Small black bead: 5 Sen each
[X] Ask if Yuuka would like something as well.


Clerics and bead strings go together.
>> No. 173574
>>173569
I'd like to know how many things you need... assume the cost of "one" is enough for whatever purpose Reina is planning, you only need two if you intend to make one for yourself, or something.
>> No. 173575
[X] She was the first to teach you how to defend yourself...
- Multicolored bead... thing?: 50 Sen each/Small black bead: 5 Sen each
[X] Ask if Yuuka would like something as well.
>> No. 173578
[X] Go out yourself, this way you can use all four at once as they 'defend' you.
>> No. 173579
[X] She was the first to teach you how to defend yourself...
- Multicolored bead... thing?: 50 Sen each/Small black bead: 5 Sen each
[X] Ask if Yuuka would like something as well.
>> No. 173619
File 137839332876.png - (720.97KB , 744x1052 , 350e2a758ed5d30c91a92b7a7a262b15.png ) [iqdb]
173619
[X] She was the first to teach you how to defend yourself...
- Multicolored bead... thing?: 50 Sen each/Small black bead: 5 Sen each
[X] Ask if Yuuka would like something as well.

- - -

The stall had some interesting looking beads that looked kind of like a rainbow of colors... it reminded you a it of how danmaku was supposed to be. The shrine maiden had been the first to give you some lessons in fighting, and while you hadn't really used any of those skills to defend yourself against anything dangerous, the thought was still highly appreciated, and who knows – maybe one day you actually will fight someone who isn't a friend!

You pointed to your purchase, did a bit of math and guesswork on how many you'd actually need, and then handed the coins over to the merchant. With a small pouch of beads in hand, you carefully hid them away in your pocket before thanking the merchant for the purchase. Then your mind wandered to Yuuka... maybe she wanted something from this stall? She probably had coin and all, but still, if you were gift shopping for one friend, you may as well try and get one for the second at the same time! Plus, she had helped you a little right now.

“Did anything catch your eye Yuuka?” you asked curiously.

The flower youkai gave you a reassuring smile and shook her head, “Nothing, but I do appreciate the thought little flower.” she turned and began to walk off, beckoning to you, “Come, let us not linger. If the shrine maiden spots you here, she may figure out your plan. She is quite good at that sort of thing, and I imagine you want this gift to be a surprise.”

Yuuka had a point there, so you said a final farewell to the merchant and quickly followed after her. She didn't take you anywhere special, but it didn't particularly matter – you just didn't want the surprise ruined. The two of you idly chatted for what felt like only a few moments, before the green-haired youkai gestured behind you, and you found the red-white standing there. Reimu seemed surprised to see Yuuka here, and fixed her with a curious stare.

“It's a rare day when you're in the village, Yuuka.” she commented casually.

Yuuka gave a slight shrug, “I would think it more rare for you to be here, shrine maiden. I make a point to visit the village on a weekly basis,” she gestures to the basket of flowers, “I ensure the flowers remain in good quality.”

The brown-haired girl chuckled, “Well... yeah, okay, you got me there. I guess I'm just a little surprised to see you here either way. I guess you were looking after Reina for me?”

“I merely saw her in the area, and we were having some idle chit-chat to pass the time. I entrust her to your care now, shrine maiden.” the flower youkai gave you a small wave, “I know you are in capable hands. I will be a little busy today, but I may have time tomorrow to visit you, or maybe the day after. I look forward to another year with you, little flower.”

And with that, she was off, quickly disappearing after rounding a corner. Reimu watched her leave before extending her hand towards you, “It's all taken care of. She expects to be done in a day or two, at best. I only hope I got most of your things... you really do own quite a few.”

“Tools of trade after all, can't do much work without them. Well, I do admit a lot of them aren't used all the time, but nothing is worse then getting to a job and lacking that one little tool you think you didn't need, and now you do.” you took Reimu's hand with a firm squeeze, “So with that out of the way, now what?”

“I think that's my line, this whole little trip was your plan after all.” teased the shrine maiden with a grin.

“Fair enough. Let's see... I think I've done all the shopping I can think of...” you glance up at the sky, “And it seems to be approaching noon, geez, the time really flies by sometimes. Let's see...”

As you closed your eyes in thought, you found yourself interrupted by the sound of a 'snap', startled you open your eyes and look around for the source of the sound – and find a grinning tengu reporter, her camera in hand.

“Holding hands now, eh? I'm jealous, you two are just moving along so fast!” teased the black-haired youkai with a laugh.

Reimu glared at the tengu, “Do I have to exterminate you today Aya?”

The crow chuckled and waved, “So nice to see you too Reimu. I did leave a note to Reina that I would try and find her in the village today! It's a lot easier with you around, I mean, her clothes are kind of distinctive, but your outfit sticks out like a sore thumb. I could pick you out of any crowd.”

“Did the publishing go well then?” you asked quickly, trying to smooth over the situation.

“But of course! I've never been late for a publication, and I'm not about to start now!” the crow grinned, a hand on her hip, “They don't call me the 'Fastest in Gensokyo' for nothing!”

“I'm pretty sure you're the only one who calls yourself that. Most of us have far more colorful and interesting nicknames for you.” the shrine maiden glanced over to you, “I guess she's coming with us?”

“Were you two planning something then?” inquired Aya curiously, learning forward, “I mean, if I'm interrupting some kind of private situation, I can certainly step away...” said the black-haired youkai, a grin growing on her face.

Reimu's face blushed slightly as her gaze returned to the tengu, “Nothing like that is going on Aya. I don't have a problem with you being around... as long as you stay where I can see you. And I don't hear that camera go off again. And I better not see a picture of me and Reina in the paper tomorrow.”

“Yeah, yeah, I think I understand how it all works by now... you're not fun at all Reimu, you need to loosen up, get a few funny bones in you.”

- - -

Those two get along so well...
[ ] Bring Aya along, she's a friend after all!
- [ ] It's about lunch time, so why not go eat somewhere? (write-in specific place? Something that seems Gensokyo)
- [ ] There's got to be some kind of entertainment in the village right? A parlor or something...?
- [ ] That hot spring back at Reimu's is pretty nice... an afternoon bath!
- [ ] You'll just head back home you think... friends in tow!
- [ ] … Maybe Remilia wouldn't mind a random drop-in. With company.
- [ ] Other?
[ ] You'd prefer just spending the day with Reimu...
- [ ] Take her out somewhere! (Same as above)
- [ ] Ask about some place to play... things in the village.
- [ ] Hot spring back at the shrine!
- [ ] Take her back home. Again, technically...
- [ ] Visit the mansion
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other

> Spent 80 Sen
> You have 9 Yen and 20 Sen still
>> No. 173637
[x] Bring Aya along, she's a friend after all!
- [x] There's got to be some kind of entertainment in the village right? A parlor or something...?
>> No. 173639
[x] Bring Aya along, she's a friend after all!
- [x] There's got to be some kind of entertainment in the village right? A parlor or something...?

I'll support this.
>> No. 173705
File 137859422245.png - (548.56KB , 525x600 , ab8912765c18c85285ae693de6fa12a4.png ) [iqdb]
173705
[x] Bring Aya along, she's a friend after all!
- [x] There's got to be some kind of entertainment in the village right? A parlor or something...?

- - -

“Well if Reimu has no problem with it, then I don't mind if you tag along. The more the merrier, right? Kind of a shame Yuuka was busy, if she wasn't I'd have all of my closest friends with me at once!”

The tengu peered at you curiously, “Yuuka was here? I must've just missed her then. I can usually spot that mop of green hair anywhere...”

“She was here less then five minutes ago. But well, spring is coming so I guess it's understandable she's kind of busy.” replied Reimu with a shrug, “Anyhow, what's the plan then oh leader?”

It took you a second to realize she was talking to you, and you quickly racked your mind for ideas. Shopping was a pretty exhausted option right now, and you hadn't eaten all that long ago...

“What kind of entertainment is there in the village?” you asked suddenly, an idea springing to mind, “I guess this is my first real trip here and all, so...”

The shrine maiden frowned, rubbing her chin, “I'm not too sure actually... do you know Aya?”

“But of course I do!” snapped the tengu, a happy grin plastered on her face, “In terms of entertainment there's certainly at least a few things I can recommend around here. Humans, and youkai alike, need something fun once in a while, so let's see... what kind of fun were you looking for, if anything Reina?”

“I don't really have anything in particular, but I guess it's best if it's something we can kind of all enjoy, or at least all participate in or something? If money is involved, I can certainly pay for us all.”

Aya nodded her head, “Well, if you're looking to spend some coin, there's some gambling parlors... not all that many, of course but I can think of a few off the top of my head. It's probably best to go to somewhere kind of normal, or cheap... there's actually a few pretty high-class parlors in the village, but well, I don't think spending that much coin is a great idea. Let's see...” the tengu paused before pointing towards a street, “Alright, follow me! I've got just the place.”

“Why did a parlor jump to mind anyway? Just kind of curious is all.” asked the shrine maiden as the three of you walked along.

You shrugged, “I just kind of thought it was something I haven't really ever seen. In the outside world, gambling is illegal in Japan... about the only thing they have is lotteries or pachinko. I heard there are some, but well, they're kind of that shady, illegal thing in movies and run by the Yakuza, and with my poor health out there and all, I couldn't really try any of that... not that I want to go to some place run by the Yakuza.”

“Well you don't have to worry about a 'yakuza' here in Gensokyo at least, it's all completely legal! Still, don't try to set up a debt or something, we still expect you to pay and the like around here of course...” comment Aya offhand, “At the worst, they might make you work in the place to pay it off though. I've heard some outsiders talk of this 'yakuza' before, they can kill you for debts or something, right? So I think some forced service for a while is a much better deal.”

It didn't take too much longer to reach yet another japanese-y looking building, which Aya claimed was some kind of gambling or gaming parlor, maybe both at once for all you knew. It was probably the largest place you had been in all day however, even if it did seem fairly empty inside. Perhaps the afternoon wasn't a busy time for this kind of thing in Gensokyo, you reasoned.

Much like your two other store experiences, a young woman quickly greeted the three of you once you arrived, “Hello, welcome, welcome!”

Compared to the others, she seemed pretty peppy, she took a moment to look all of you over, “Well, if it isn't miss Shameimaru, I haven't seen you here in a while I think. And is that...?” the girl peered curiously at Reimu, “The Hakurei shrine maiden herself? I don't think I ever dreamed of meeting her in here of all places!”

“It's been a while Akemi, at least some months hasn't it? I told you I'd be back one day!” replied Aya cheerfully, “I brought company this time. I guess it's no surprise you already know who Reimu is – yes it is the Hakurei shrine maiden in the flesh – but let's see... do you know her?” questioned the reporter, pointing at you.

The young-looking woman tilted her head as she stared at you for several, silent seconds, “Ah! She's that girl you wrote about a few times, right? I think you mentioned her a few times... it was the hair I remember you talked about. Ah, let's see, you mentioned her name it was...” the woman paused for a moment, before snapping her fingers, “Reina! That was it!”

“You talk about me to your friends, Aya?” you asked with a chuckle, “And ah, it's nice to meet you Akemi.”

“But of course! I have to spread the word, give you a little bit of advertising and all that you know? Still, a lot of natives are wary of outsiders... they'll warm up to you, I'm sure. Swimming in business before you know it!” the tengu laughed, “But well, we came here to play a little bit Akemi, if it's not a problem.”

“Certainly, not a problem at all! Well, I guess as this is the first time for the Hakurei shrine maiden and Reina, I guess a little bit of explanation is in order...” the kimino-clad girl coughed and straighted her posture, “Well, I'm making it sound all serious, but really this is just a little family owned and run establishment. There's not as many people around this time of day, so the three of you pretty much have it all to yourselves... we're usually busy in the evenings. Anyway, we have the usual selection of games, mahjong, shogi, go... those sorts of things.

“With the influx of outsiders over the years, I've been trying my best to pick up some of the games, such as poker or blackjack. Ah, we also have rock-paper-scissor if so inclined...” the girl giggled, “I know, it's nothing much, but I guess we're mostly here to give people a place to just sit down and have fun. Of course, gambling is completely allowed and if you wish to play in that manner, I'm certainly capable of playing hostess. We generally play in increments of sen, so I hope you can at least afford that. If you're looking to gamble in yen denomations, well, we're a little too small to handle too much of that safely...” Akemi rubbed the back of her head nervously, “Ah, lastly! We of course can have games here in the open, but we have some more private rooms in the back, as we understand sometimes customers don't want random people to waltz in and join, or observe. No charge, of course! Extra, that is, here let me get you the prices...”

The girl dug behind the counter and fetched a sheet of paper, handing it over, “We also have refreshments. It's all there. Please, let me know if I can help you at all.”

- - -

She's kind of a perky girl, isn't she?
[ ] Playing in the open is fine!
- [ ] Choice of game? (Listed above)
- [ ] Betting or not?
[ ] A bit of privacy can't hurt... (20 Sen for the room)
- [ ] But what to play!
- [ ] Will you be betting?
[ ] On second thought... (write-in)

If you go in with betting, it's assumed Akemi will be present, just as a FYI. I mean, she would be the 'house' then so makes sense.
>> No. 173724
[x] Playing in the open is fine!
- [x] Mahjong.
- [x] Not betting.

May as well learn a new game.
>> No. 173742
[x] Playing in the open is fine!
- [x] Mahjong.
- [x] No betting.

It's a beautiful day, so no reason to be cooped up in a room (even though I'm sure they're very nice rooms).
And since we're just playing with friends to amuse ourselves, betting feels a bit excessive.


I also looked up mahjong because I was pretty sure you usually play it with four people, but apparently there are three person rule variants in, among others, Japan. So that sounds pretty perfect.
Or we could invite Akemi to play with us for a proper four player game. It's not as if there are any other customers at this time of day and she would be occupied at our table anyway if we were betting or playing, say, poker and needed a proper dealer.
>> No. 173764
[X] Playing in the open is fine!
- [X] Go Fish.
- [X] Not betting.

It's quick and easy.
>> No. 173833
File 137900438550.jpg - (162.22KB , 850x447 , sample-bec2fdf99f6d62b9f62e051ea0fa7808.jpg ) [iqdb]
173833
[x] Playing in the open is fine!
- [x] Mahjong.
- [x] Not betting.

- - -

“I don't think we'll need anything special.” you said after a few moments of consideration, “I actually feel like trying to learn mahjong actually, which...?”

Akemi pointed towards a table in the open, “There you go! Mahjong is always a popular choice.”

“You said 'learn' mahjong, right? You've never played?” asked Reimu curiously.

“Not that I can think of. It's a multiplayer game, and I never really had anyone to play with back home usually... I'd heard of it and seen it, just never really played. Why?”

The tengu flashed a grin at you, “What she means is, she's really good at mahjong. So am I, in fact. Actually, I think most youkai are rather good at it. At least any tengu I've met and played with, is quite good at it.” she winked, “I guess you couldn't ask for better teachers though. There's some three-player variants, but generally mahjong is played with four players so...”

The shopkeeper seemed to have gotten the tengu's subtle hint, “Oh! Certainly, I mean, if Reina has no objections, I can certainly serve as the fourth. It's a little slow anyway.”

“I don't have a problem with it, I wasn't aware mahjong was played with four people really. I had seen four people play it before, but I guess I just thought they always played like that... I didn't think it was the normal thing.”

“There's a lot of variations to mahjong as well. From what I can remember of my history...” the reporter cupped her chin as she took a seat at the table, “It came over from some place called China. They have their own way of playing, which I think is called Old Hong Kong variant, or something? Anyway, we don't play that one here. We have 'richi mahjong' here, which I guess in the outside world, you just call 'Japanese mahjong'. As for how it works...” Aya's gaze lingered over to the shrine maiden.

Reimu shrugged, folding her arms, “Go ahead.”

Aya's face brightened with another of her characteristic grins, “Great! Okay so first, we need to determine the East, South, West, and North. Think of it basically like a kind of turn order. Let's see...” the tengu dug around the tiles, picking five of them and placing them facedown and shuffled them around, “First someone does this, and then they distribute one to everyone...”

You weren't quite sure the tiles meant yet, but yours seem to be all white...

“So, who has the white tile then?” asked the crow, holding the last tile piece, when she sees you have it, she passes the last tile to you, “Alright, so now we just determined the positions. Where the white tile is, that is where the 'east' player goes and then everyone else goes in counter-clock wise position in the order of east, south, west, and north. So we'll need to do a bit of rearranging...

“Once we do this, we'll then need a die to determine who is the dealer and...”

Something tells you this game is a lot more difficult to get started then you had thought. Reimu seems to take note of your puzzled expression and offers you a comforting smile.

“Don't worry about it so much. I guess it's all a bit strange the first time, but you can get the hang of it pretty quick. Besides, I don't even bother with all this sometimes... Aya is just really into doing things properly.” the shrine maiden shakes her head, “If only she was into doing things properly when it came to reporting...”

~

As perhaps to be expected from playing a game for the first time, you did not fare very well at all. While you had been warned that Aya and Reimu were both very good players, it seemed Akemi was also quite good at the game – which is perhaps expected from someone who owns a parlor, and likely plays the game on a daily basis.

From watching people play mahjong, you would've never guessed yourself that it was quite so... complex. There was just a lot to take in at once, and you found yourself being constantly corrected and advised by your friends. A part of you thought it may have been annoying to them, but judging by their pleased expressions during the game, they didn't seem to mind teaching you and correcting you the entire way through.

You had, of course, lost quite terribly and Aya admitted it was probably a good thing none of you had been betting any money on the games. You weren't too sure how many games you had actually played, but before you knew it, you could notice the sun was no longer shining and it seemed evening was fast approaching – and other customers had begun to show up, which meant Akemi had to excuse herself from the game.

“I guess we should get going as well.” declared Aya, rising out of her seat after Akemi had left, “I can tell Reina's brain is pretty worn out from all this. It's a lot to take in, but once you get the hang of it, it's pretty simple.”

“She didn't do too bad for an outsider, I'd have to say.” admitted Reimu with a smirk, “I've heard some pretty bad tales of outsiders just failing utterly at figuring out how to play mahjong.”

“You really need to stop by more often Aya!” replied the shopkeeper, offering you all a wave as you began to leave.

The tengu flashed her a wink and thumbs up, “Certainly. I'll even see if I can't bring Reina along some more. I'm sure she enjoyed herself, right?”

“Of course! Thank you for the games, Akemi, whats the...”

The girl quickly made a shushing motion and waved again, “I'll be looking forward to seeing you again one day. Have a good evening! I'd say watch yourself on the way home, but I'm positive you're in good hands.”

“Akemi's a nice girl. When I first met her, she was probably about... oh... this big...” mused the tengu, lowering her hand to about three feet off the ground once the three of you had left the parlor, “She runs this one pretty much by herself, but her family owns a few other ones... if memory serves me right, I think her mother runs one of the more fancy ones.”

“I guess you've been a frequent visitor and patron then?” questioned Reimu.

“Yeah, I guess something like that.” replied Aya with a grin, “But ah, that's just history. Time sure flies when you have fun... I'm still free, as usual, but with the usual issues. If you still wanted to do anything tonight, of course!”

The shrine maiden looked up at the sky and shrugged, “Did you have anything else in mind Reina? If not, I can always take you back home or to the shrine... whichever you prefer. It has been a pretty fun day though, I will admit.” she glanced at the black-haired youkai, “Even with her around.”

- - -

The time really does fly by...
[ ] Return to the shrine?
- [ ] Evening activity? (write-in)
[ ] It's been an eventful day, but guess it's time to go home...
- [ ] Invite Reimu or Aya? Both?
[ ] Other?

Sorry if you were expecting some mahjong-playing updates, but to be honest, I can barely understand how to play the game.
>> No. 173834
[X] It's been an eventful day, but guess it's time to go home...
- [X] Invite both.

It was around lunch time when we got here, and now it's evening. They might have had some snacks or something while playing but I never noticed anything about a proper meal.
Let's offer to make them dinner, as thanks for teaching us mahjong.
>> No. 173835
[X] It's been an eventful day, but guess it's time to go home...

No place like home.
>> No. 173891
[X] It's been an eventful day, but guess it's time to go home...
- [X] Invite both.

Obviously we need to have them both over for dinner. We shall make them a meal cooked with love to repay them for their friendship and company.
>> No. 173902
File 137937244445.jpg - (316.83KB , 605x780 , 7122acfb7c086ae2b71280490f864aae.jpg ) [iqdb]
173902
[X] It's been an eventful day, but guess it's time to go home...
- [X] Invite both.

- - -

“Why don't we all go back to my house? I'll cook you all a nice dinner, it's the least I can do for all the time you two spent with me lately, and as a thanks for the mahjong lessons.” you offer with a grin.

“Oooh, a homemade dinner eh? Well, I'd never say no to that!” replies Aya with a grin of her own, “I'm sure you aren't going to say 'no' to a meal either, eh Reimu?”

The shrine maiden glares at the crow, “The way you put that kind of bugs me... but, yes, I wouldn't refuse Reina's kindness. What are you thinking of making?”

“Not sure yet. Guess I'll see what I have... I'm sure it'll be to both your liking!”

~

Your kitchen was not some kind of five – or even a four star – restaurant, but it had always served you faithfully throughout the years. It had been a while since you had taken stock, or even restocked, your foodstuffs, but it seems you weren't really wanting for much; the thought had stuck you that perhaps it was kept restocked by Yukari, much like your supply of wood, but you couldn't really confirm that.

It did seem you had a lot more rice then anything though. So you did the logical thing when you have a lot of rice – make some stir fried rice! And some riceballs to go with it. Your friends merely chatted amongst themselves while you busied yourself with preparing of dinner.

“Ah that smells wonderful! Where did you learn how to cook anyway?” inquired the tengu curiously.

You considered the question for a moment before responding, “I never really was taught how to cook, I guess. I sort of read a lot of books and did a lot of experimentation, so I guess I'd say I'm pretty much self-taught. I think I started doing it just because I was tired of eating pre-made meals day after day, and I wanted to try and change it up from time to time.”

“Is that so? I've tried to each myself a few things, but I still can't really get it down...” mused Reimu with a sigh.

“Maybe you should just get Reina to do all your cooking for you, she seems to enjoy it and she's quite skilled.”

“I think what's really stopping you from cooking too much is your kitchen is kind of... barebones, I guess.” you offer, grabbing some plates, “To properly cook an assortment of foods, you also need the right tools and equipment!”

The black-haired youkai chuckled, “Please, as if Reimu could afford to buy a stove, let alone some pots and pans... maybe she can get a cutting board.”

By the time you turn around to start setting the table, you found the reporter in a headlock as the shrine maiden furiously noogied her. Those two really got along in a fairly... unique way, you'd have to admit. The sight of completed food, and a promise to not feed them if they didn't stop fighting, quickly placated both of them and dinner began in earnest. As perhaps expected, the two were quick to praise your cooking and seemed to thoroughly enjoy it. Dinner with friends... always seemed to make the food taste even better, for whatever reason.

“Ah, I could get used to eating Reina cooked foods every day...” commented Aya wistfully, “Maybe you should've opened a restaurant or something.”

“There's already a ton of food in the village, I don't think people would come a few hours outside it for food.” countered the shrine maiden, “Besides, her talent is pretty much one-of-a-kind here in Gensokyo.”

“Yeah, I guess so... it's just if she had a restaurant, I'd have a completely reasonable excuse to drop by everyday and enjoy this food!”

You chuckled and started to clean up the table, “Really if you want to have me cook something, it's not a big problem. I like cooking already, and it's even better to cook for friends.”

Well, dinner was served... Yuuka had said she was going to try and stop by tomorrow... what to do with your friends for the night?

- - -

A good question...
[ ] Have them stay the night!
[ ] Thank them for the day, and send them on their way?
[ ] It's kinda late but you could do something first...? (write-in)
[ ] Other
>> No. 173907
[x] Have them stay the night!

Return Reimu's hospitality.
>> No. 173914
[ ] Have them stay the night!

It is only natural, after all, to do this. Also, sadly we are all out of pillows so they will just have to use Reina instead.
>> No. 173931
File 13795599361.png - (460.04KB , 507x1000 , 5b0c4c540211e5f290988d79bcf3482c.png ) [iqdb]
173931
[x] Have them stay the night!

- - -

Reimu had graciously allowed you, and Aya by extension, to stay the night, so it only seemed right to return the favor! Sleeping arrangements might be a bit tricky, but you were sure something could be worked out...

“Why don't the two you stay the night?” you offered with a smile.

“Dinner and lodgings for free! Maybe this place is more like an inn right now.” announced the tengu with a cheer, “I'll be gone before any of you wake up, but I'll gladly accept. Let's see... as I recall, you have a little guest room or something, right? I'll take that, since I'll be getting up pretty early. Wouldn't want to wake either of you up.”

“I can see Aya is speaking for me again...” muttered Reimu, “But I'll accept the offer regardless. Thank you for the meal, and for the lodgings for the night Reina.”

You shake your head, “No need to thank me. It's the very least I can do, really. Well, I need to clean up all this so... if you want, you can use my bath upstairs. I know it's not as nice as a hot spring but... it's better then nothing.”

“I'll take you up on that. I've got the first bath, you'll just have to wait Reimu!” teased Aya, already quickly leaving the room before the shrine maiden could protest.

“She's a lively one, isn't she?” you remark with a wry smile.

Reimu chuckled and shook her head, “I guess that's one way to put it, yeah...”

~

To a bit of surprise, your friends had worked out a way for them to both sleep in the guest room, and you were fortunate to peek into it in the morning to reveal there was no tengu corpse stuffed in the corner, but rather it seemed Aya was gone as you had suspected. Reimu was still sound asleep, and you didn't see a reason to go and wake her.

Yuuka had said she would try to come by in the morning, and you still had one guest to take care of... so you took it upon yourself to prepare some breakfast, making sure to make a little extra just in case – though you were pretty sure even if Yuuka showed up, she would likely have eaten by now. Just seemed like the kind of thing she'd do, the green-haired youkai always seemed so calm and collected.

You hear some quiet footsteps behind you before a voice speaks up, “Breakfast even? You're really spoiling me here Reina.”

“Just kind of a habit I guess. I always make breakfast for myself, and I just seem to remember if I have company over, and I don't want you to feel left out. Aya seems to have left already, just like yesterday...”

The sound of a chair scraping along the floor announced Reimu's seating at the table, “I think she left about an hour or two ago. She's got her little paper to write I guess. She's annoying, but she's dedicated at least.”

“I think she's nice, I don't know why you two don't really get along. And here you go, some freshly served and cooked breakfast!”

“Thanks. And well, she's a reporter. Trust me, get involved in a few incidents and...” the shrine maiden chuckled, “Well, you can view her however you want. She's certainly not the worst kind of youkai you could be friends with.”

“My little flower has herself a fine selection of friends and acquaintances, I would say. She is an excellent judge of character.” commented a voice.

You almost jumped out of your seat to find Yuuka's face in the window, a soft smile on her face, “Good morning, Reina. I apologize for eavesdropping, it was not my intention, but I did not want to force my way inside, and I heard voices.” her eyes flicked to Reimu, “And a good morning to you as well, shrine maiden.”

“Not at all! Ah, I'll let you in, just a moment!” you announce, quickly hopping out of your seat to the front door, unlocking and opening it to allow the flower youkai access, “Do you want something to eat?”

“No thank you little flower, I already ate before I arrived. But I appreciate the offer.” she steadily made her way into the kitchen, taking a seat at the table, “I will have something to drink, if you have anything.”

“I think I have some tea, let me see... ah, why didn't I think to make any!”

Reimu finished up her food, moving her plate away from her, “Come to think of it, tea is kind of a hard thing to get in the village. You'd think with how much of it we drink, there'd be like a teahouse or something in there...”

“Do you not prefer making your own tea, shrine maiden?” inquired Yuuka carefully.

“Eh, I guess. Still, it's just kind of a surprise. You probably never have to even worry about getting tea, do you Yuuka?”

The flower youkai considered the question carefully, “I will admit to having quite the tea garden, so I do have quite the selection. The biggest problem with tea, is the growing time... it takes several years for them to produce anything. I have been experimenting with some new kinds...” the green-haired woman trails off, “But I believe that is enough of an answer.”

The two continued to chat a little bit as you hurriedly prepared a pot of tea and served your guests, finally taking a seat at the table to eat your breakfast, “I'm still not all that used to tea, I guess. I'm used to things like orange juice.”

“Not much of a tea drinker then Reina?” asks Reimu, savoring her cup.

“I guess not really. It's not exactly that cheap, and I guess sometimes I'm just a bit lazy in the morning. I'm not much of a coffee person either, so I'm used to just opening the fridge and getting a carton of something to drink.”

“It is an acquired taste I believe. You are also an outsider, and I hear that tea is not quite as widespread as it used to be. You appear to have a much wider variety of beverages available to you now.” the youkai pauses to drink her tea, “A fine serving of tea, little flower. Did you have any plans for the day? My schedule is quite free today.”

- - -

So today is a Yuuka day! Let's see...
[ ] Have her take you to the village!
[ ] You've never actually been to where Yuuka lives...
- [ ] (Optionally for any) Bring Reimu along?
[ ] Other? (write-in)
>> No. 173934
[X] You've never actually been to where Yuuka lives...
- [X] (Optionally for any) Bring Reimu along?

>>173902
Wouldn't tea be rather cheap, especially in Japan? From what I've heard, tea is very common there, let alone places like England, China, or Russia. Hell even in countries which are more famous for coffee consumption, tea is rather cheap I think. Somehow I don't think Reimu or most other people in Gensokyo drink super-high quality tea, so I can't imagine tea being something expensive for Reina.
>> No. 173947
[X] You've never actually been to where Yuuka lives...

Let's not bring Reimu. This is day for spending time with Yuuka, and I'm sure Reimu has some lazing around and drinking tea work to do.


>>173934
Well, there's a difference between tea and tea.
Around here there are more coffee drinkers than tea drinkers, but tea is pretty common too.
If you just buy something like tea bags or similar "instant" types of tea I guess the price wouldn't be too bad. But if you want actual tea leaves it tends to cost a bit more to get some decent tea.
And it's definitely more trouble than just buying a carton of orange juice anyway.
>> No. 173949
>>173934
>>173947

It should depend on what farmers farm [and I guess what yuka is willing to gap outside the border, I can't see boxes of tea leaves being misplaced hard enough to end up in gensokyo anyhow]

Can't imagine that the lowest rung of wholeleaf tea [Mugicha] would be that expensive seeing that Barley is a staple crop.
>> No. 173970
[X] You've never actually been to where Yuuka lives...
>> No. 173985
File 137979919028.jpg - (224.98KB , 850x814 , sample-8fd48ea066eba4f856324556878fac79.jpg ) [iqdb]
173985
[X] You've never actually been to where Yuuka lives...

- - -

You had known Yuuka for a good amount of time now, but you didn't actually know that many more... personal things about her, you could say. She knew where you lived and how you lived, you had been to Reimu's shrine a number of times, but the only time you had met Yuuka anywhere was last year, in some seemingly abandoned house. It occurred to you, that you had never seen where she lived!

“If it's not too much of a problem, could I maybe go see where you live, Yuuka? I'm kind of curious.”

The flower youkai seems surprised by your question, raising an eyebrow as she fixes you with a curious look, “Where I live, little flower? Well...”

Yuuka's voice trailed off for a moment, as if in thought. This was probably the first time you had seen her like this actually, was asking to see where she lived so unusual? Reimu seemed to note the odd look on the youkai's face and was also watching her carefully. The flower youkai's eyes seemed to glaze over for a moment, before she lightly shook her head and gave you a smile.

“If that is what you wish Reina, I will be happy to oblige. I think your curiosity will be quite underwhelmed by the truth.”

Reimu chuckled and shook her head, “With that look on your face, I was wondering if you were hiding something. I don't think I've ever seen you so surprised, Yuuka.”

“It was not a request I was expecting. Still, I have yet to disappoint my little flower, so I do not plan to start today. Would you like to set out immediately? I think you will appreciate it more if you go earlier in the day.”

“Well, I don't have anything I needed to do so...” you pause for a moment, quickly checking your thoughts over, “Yes, I'm good to go right now. Ah! It was a fun day yesterday Reimu, thank you.”

“Really don't mention it, it's nice to do something with a respectable, normal friend.” said the shrine maiden waving her hand dismissively, “Well, I'll see you around then. Feel free to drop by the shrine whenever.”

Yuuka waited until Reimu had left to finish off her tea, and rise out of her seat, extending her hand out towards you, “I'll fly you there little flower. It's a bit of a walk from here, I would say... three or four hours. Much faster to fly.”

~

Flying was always such an amazing thing, just seeing all that ground fly by! Although, maybe you could only appreciate that because you were constantly being carried around everywhere, instead of using your own flight skills...

Yuuka certainly wasn't as fast as Aya, but she still seemed to be rather quick... it felt like when anyone else carried you, their flight speed seemed slower, but the flower youkai seemed always the same. Curious observation there.

Before long, your sight changed from seeing fields of grass, to flowers – and then suddenly many, many flowers. All sunflowers, actually, which struck you as odd given it was winter, yet... there was certainly a giant field of sunflowers here. It was here that Yuuka finally descended, and put you down; she walked a few paces and stretched her arms out, gesturing around.

“This is home to me, little flower.”

A giant field of flowers? Very tall flowers, actually now that you looked about yourself... most of these seemed to tower above even you! It was kind of like being in a cornfield, but instead it was all sunflowers. Craning your neck a bit, you could seem some small girls – likely fairies – flitting around the area, and even some lazily laying down on the sunflowers themselves, basking in the sun.

There wasn't a house or anything in sight. This was how Yuuka lived, in a sunflower field?

“A field of sunflowers...?” you say with surprise, still trying to comprehend it all.

The green-haired youkai gave you a gentle smile and nodded her head, “I told you it would underwhelm your curiosity. Were you picturing perhaps some kind of elaborate mansion, like the vampire?”

“Well, I'm not sure I was expecting that, but I guess I was expecting... something? I mean... how do you have a kitchen or a bedroom out here...?”

Yuuka laughed softly and walked up to you, gently patting your head, “It's a bit strange to you, isn't it? I have seen many human homes, and I imagine you have your own ideas of what is required in a home... but to me, I don't need any of that. Let's just say it's... a youkai thing.”

The youkai gave you a final pat, before withdrawing her hand, “This place is known simply as the 'Garden of the Sun'. If you actually go over that hill,” she pointed to said hill, “you can see the village from there. On some days, I have seen humans atop it, looking down at the garden. I understand it is quite beautiful to look at, even for them.

“You surely noticed the fairies as well. They are parts of nature, and are naturally drawn to a place like this as well. Lesser youkai also make their home here, of course. I understand this kind of living is completely alien to humans, but this is home to me, and it always will be.”

It certainly was a beautiful field of flowers, you had to admit... even if you were a bit disappointed to not see an actual house. Did that mean Yuuka just kind of... laid down on the ground to sleep? Did she sleep on the sunflowers, like some of the fairies? How unusual... but you did know very little about youkai actually, so maybe it wasn't that unusual? You knew Remilia lived in a grand mansion, but she was likely quite different from other youkai.

“I guess it is pretty strange to me but... it is a beautiful field of flowers. Isn't it kind of early in the year for them to all be in bloom like this though...?”

“That would be my own power, little flower. I can make anything bloom, and I keep the Garden of the Sun in bloom all year long.” Yuuka paused for a moment and gave you a small smile, “But that's a bit of a lie, the Garden is kept in full bloom as a result of a group effort. Me, the youkai, and the fairies help keep it like this.”

She casually twirled her opened umbrella, “Is your curiosity satisfied, little flower? While I love being at home, I would not be offended if you wanted to go elsewhere. My home is a bit lacking in traditional entertainment, after all. You can also come here anytime you wish, the fairies and youkai have seen you with me – they will know better then to cause you trouble. Well, the fairies might prank you, but that is simply their nature.”

- - -

The Garden of the Sun... what a place to live!
[ ] It's so nice here though! You can do... (write-in?)
[ ] Ask to go to the village?
- [ ] Shop?
- [ ] Eat?
- [ ] Entertainment?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Would it be rude to have Yuuka take you to see Remilia?
- [ ] You hadn't seen Remilia in a while, so could she take you there, and she's free to go?
[ ] Other (write-in)
>> No. 173990
[X] It's so nice here though! You can spend a while just talking and enjoying the beautiful Garden of the Sun.

Sometimes doing nothing is more satisfying than doing something.
Imagine, just lie down, close your eyes and enjoy the sun and the scent of sunflowers.
>> No. 174027
[X] It's so nice here though! You can spend a while just talking and enjoying the beautiful Garden of the Sun.

Sounds good to me.
>> No. 174030
[X] It's so nice here though! You can spend a while just talking and enjoying the beautiful Garden of the Sun.

Snoozing amid the sunflowers! While Yuuka gazes down at Reina's peaceful, sleeping features.
>> No. 174050
Just as a quick update from me, I'm not dead.

School has started up, and I have a math class this quarter. Which is basically meaning I have daily homework that I can't easily do in a short time, so it's eating a lot into my freetime.

Plus first week of classes, so all kind of crazy. Expect updates to be somewhat delayed until I can figure out an easy way to do all this.
>> No. 174081
File 138020982156.jpg - (162.30KB , 850x850 , sample-6da8f01235d6011059872f1516421c75.jpg ) [iqdb]
174081
[X] It's so nice here though! You can spend a while just talking and enjoying the beautiful Garden of the Sun.

- - -

You mulled over your options for a moment, before flashing the flower youkai a toothy grin, “Well... what if I just want to stay here in the Garden for now? I wanted to see your home, and even if it's not quite what I expected... maybe I just want to stay here for a while? It seems so... relaxing. It also seems kind of warm here, all things considered.”

“It is the Garden of the Sun for a reason, little flower. The sun is always shining brilliantly upon it when it is up...” stated Yuuka with a small smirk, “But very well, I will not have any objection to your desire. Let us find a nice place to relax, follow me little flower, and stay close... I have heard the garden is not unlike a cornfield, it is easy to get lost in it.”

“Well, if getting separated is a problem, why don't I hold your hand then? It would seem pretty hard to get lost in all these sunflowers that way.” you suggested helpfully.

The flower youkai gave you a smile, and extended her hand towards you, “An excellent idea, now I won't have to worry about losing my little flower.”

With Yuuka in the lead, the green-haired youkai casually strolled through the flowers, her hand tightly squeezing your own. You noticed as the two of you went through the garden, the sunflowers almost seemed to part away from the flower youkai without her actually having to brush them aside – also the fairies that lazed around the garden, seemed to take particular interest in the two of you, although they kept their distance from you, and simply floated off after you passed.

“The fairies do not often see me bring anyone with me, let alone lead them myself.” answered Yuuka, as if reading your mind, “They are simply curious. Also they are likely planning pranks if they catch you alone... as it is their nature. Do not ever take pranks from a fairy as a sign of dislike, it is often the opposite.”

“Is it that unusual for you to bring anyone with you, Yuuka?” you asked curiously.

The youkai chuckled softly, “It is yes. As I'm sure you're aware, most of the villagers find me quite terrifying, and us youkai may all be acquainted with one another, but we are not all necessarily friends. I also rarely host any sort of gatherings, and I tend to keep myself distanced from the going-on's of Gensokyo.”

She paused for a moment, gazing around, “We are close to the location I have in mind. Although, speaking of going-on's, do not get the impression I do not care for the well-being of Gensokyo. It is simply a matter of most incidents do not concern me in any way, and it is the shrine maiden's duty to handle them.”

“Reimu seems to have a lot of important duties around here... feels kind of unfair almost.” you say with a sigh.

“In all honesty, it is probably quite unfair. The Hakurei have a heavy burden, not only are they charged with keeping the balance in Gensokyo, they are also intimately tied into its very existence with the Hakurei Barrier. I may not give the impression, but I have the utmost respect for the shrine maiden, we have our disagreements, but I respect her ability to be the way she is, in spite of all she is responsible for.”

“Why do you just call her 'shrine maiden', anyway? Come to think of it, I've only heard you refer to me, and Yukari by name. Everyone else seems to get some kind of... title.”

Yuuka was silent for a few moments, before stopping, “She has not asked me to call her by name, and so I have not done so. If she has, she hasn't asked in a nice enough way for me to accept yet. And here, this will be a good place to relax.”

It looked a lot like any other part of the garden... although you did not the sunflowers here seemed particularly large, with several extending far above your own head. You briefly had to wonder how sunflowers could even get that big, but in honesty, giant sunflowers would be amongst the least unusual things in Gensokyo.

The flower youkai pointed upwards at a pair of sunflowers, “Up there. Standing around all day would be tiring, it is far more enjoyable to lay down. Worry not, you surely noticed the fairies doing the same, yes? A sufficiently large enough sunflower here is quite capable of supporting your weight.”

The concept of using a sunflower as a sort of cushion was... unusual to be sure, but the fairies certainly were doing it... and Yuuka wouldn't lie to you! You think anyway. The sunflower seemed quite climbable, but you somehow suspected that would be far more effort involved then simply floating up to the top and then resting on the flower proper.

Which is what you did, of course, climbing was for people who couldn't fly! Even if you couldn't fly all that well, it wasn't hard to just float straight up, more or less. Yuuka had beaten you up there of course, and sat on the flower, her legs dangling off the edge.

Now, you had no idea how a sunflower even felt to sit on, or lay on, but it was surprisingly... comfortable. It was kind of soft, but more importantly it just felt really warm, it wasn't too hot, and it filled your body with just a warm fuzzy feeling. You stretched out on the flower and let out a content sigh.

“Wow, this is really nice...”

“I am glad you like it, little flower. It is disappointing more do not try to do it, but I suspect my reputation frightens them.”

“Why do you have such a reputation anyway? I mean, ever since the day I met you, you've been nothing but kind.”

Yuuka chuckled, “And that is exactly why I have the reputation, Reina. It is well-known fact in Gensokyo, or at least a widely accepted one, that the more polite and kind a youkai is, the more powerful and frightening they are. When you get to be as old as me, you just learn there is no reason to be scary to humans, they already know of your reputation, and it is a waste of effort to expend energy on picking fights with them to prove it.”

“I think I may have asked this before but... just how old are you anyway Yuuka? I know you said you don't really count anymore, but...”

The flower youkai smirked at you, “It is true, I do not count anymore. So I cannot give you an accurate answer, but let me say that I am quite old... I cannot say if I am older or younger then reporter, but she is some thousands year old, I believe.”

You blinked in surprise, staring at Yuuka wide-eyed, “Over a thousand? You? And even Aya?”

“I cannot be certainly if she is thousands, but I know for a fact, it has been at least a thousand years since she started living in the land that would become Gensokyo... when she arrived here, Gensokyo was not what it is today. It was still part of the outside world, but yes, I am quite certain she is at least over a thousand years old, and likely much older. She does not act it, does she?” asked Yuuka with a knowing smile.

“I guess Yukari is probably just as old, if not older then... it's just kind of crazy to wrap my head around, I guess.”

“I hear that often. Humans live such short lifespans, rarely even reaching a hundred. Still, in a way, it is enviable, your short lifespans make you try to do so much, in so little time... and you can accomplish quite a lot if you put your minds to it. Us youkai however, we take our time with most things... we after all, have centuries to accomplish whatever we want.”

“What about fairies? Aren't they youkai also?”

The green-haired woman shook her head, “No, they are not. Fairies are fairies, and youkai are youkai. The fairies are aspects of nature itself, their lifespans are... not exactly short, but in a way it is. Perhaps the best way to explain it...” she paused to consider the question, “When a human dies, they pass on to the underworld, and they can, over the years, eventually qualify for reincarnation of sorts. Fairies however, have an incredibly short cycle of life, should one perish, they reincarnate likely within the day, if not possibly within hours.

“They are quite child-like in their nature, but it is not unreasonable for some of them to actually be quite ancient... they have just probably died a number of times. Not that a fairy can ever truly die really. I think humans envy that, they are stuck waiting for years or longer to reincarnate, where as a fairy gets go through the 'fast lane', as it were.”

Gensokyo really was a pretty weird place... still, that's what made it so nice! Ah, this sunflower was so relaxing... you could probably doze off here pretty easy.

- - -

Sunflower so comfy...
[ ] Doze off...
[ ] No, no, no! Not time to doze! Instead...
- [ ] Question Yuuka some more? (write-in)
- [ ] Do something with Yuuka? (write-in)
- [ ] Other (write-in)
[ ] Other (write-in)
>> No. 174092
[x] Doze off...

Dozing off on a warm sunflower, with a lovely flower youkai watching over you...

Will Yuuka steal a kiss?
>> No. 174096
[X] Doze off...

>You will never sleep on a giant sunflower with a beatiful woman watching over you.
>sadfrog.jpg
>> No. 174102
[x] Doze off...
>> No. 174105
File 138038066232.jpg - (300.46KB , 597x600 , 65bd9e2707b46a89c62f16dfa4cb435e.jpg ) [iqdb]
174105
[x] Doze off...

- - -

It was a nice warm, sunny day and you were just going to spend some of it lounging right here... just close your eyes for a little bit, just to kind of bask in it all... and completely not planning to just take a nap right here and now.

Yeah, okay that was a total lie, it just felt like the right thing to do. How many humans could ever say they slept in the sun while laying on a giant sunflower? Plus, you had Yuuka to watch over you, so there'd be no problems at all with this.

Before you drifted off to sleep, you swore you heard the flower youkai chuckle and mutter... something, but you couldn't make it out.

~

“I'm sorry that I have to interrupt your peaceful nap.” states a familiar voice with a sigh.

Well, this hadn't happened in a while. How long had it been since you had woken up inside this 'dreamscape' anyway? Must've been months... Valerie hadn't needed to speak to you in a while it seems. Still, you didn't really mind it. A quick look around the dreamscape revealed it to be more or less the same as every other visit... still that creepy tree off in the distance, which always seemed kind of black and forboding.

There certainly did seem to be more sunflowers in here then last time though... and some of them still had that weird quirk of having the center be a yin-yang orb instead. Looking up in the sky, you did notice something new: there was some crows flying around. Huh, how odd.

“Ah, it's alright. I don't think these little visits seem to mess with my restfulness anyway... I'm not even tired, but it was just such a nice comfy spot...”

The cloaked figure nodded – you noted that while the hood seemed to obscure a face, it was just actually completely black. Like a face didn't exist or something, kind of creepy that...

“Yes, I understand just fine. Ah, now as for the business at hand... I do want to congratulate you on a full year in Gensokyo. As I am sure you remember, the last owner... well, he did not last that long.” she paused and paced for a few moments, “Sorry, that is depressing news. I have not been contacting you lately as I have been... discussing things. Things that concern you, but have not required your input at the time, but for now, I am here to announce something.”

You nod your head and sit on the ground, “Alright. I guess you've been talking to Yukari in my head while I sleep or something?”

Valerie mulled this over for a moment, “In a manner of speaking, yes. Although, to say this exists in your 'head' is a bit incorrect. This place rather exists inside the grimoire, and is shaped by your own personal experiences. It is a bit complicated to explain to someone not well-versed in magic, but ah, that is besides the point...”

“I'm here to advise you on some features of the grimoire which are now available to you. It has taken me quite some time to get all the kinks worked out... you are, after all, rather unique in my line of owners, and it has taken me considerably longer to sync some of the grimoire's functions to your unique... sorry, I was about to start discussing mage terms again.”

“Sync functions? I thought all the grimoire did was kind of record and write things down that I did? And also made it pretty much impossible for anyone to read?” you asked curious, raising an eyebrow.

The avatar nodded, “That is the most basic of functions, yes. However, the grimoire is capable of much, much more. What I have recently gotten working is the... well, for the lack of a better term, as a previous owner had dubbed it 'Rewrite'.”

“'Rewrite'? Well... what's that exactly?”

“As you mentioned, the grimoire records everything you do, much like a story or journal. This ability is much like what it's name implies: it allows you to rewrite what happened. As an owner once put it... it is much like taking a character sheet in a tabletop game, and changing the numbers. You can use this to grant you knowledge beyond what you are currently capable of, or to modify events to suit what you had in mind.”

You blinked in surprise and stared at Valerie, “That... kind of sounds like messing with reality or something. Isn't that kind of... powerful? I mean, I'd think Yukari would have objections to that kind of thing.”

Valerie shook her hooded head, “Incorrect. The things she is capable of are far more powerful then what the grimoire allows you to do. The effects of Rewrite are temporary, only lasting probably for that day. It also cannot effect anyone but yourself – you cannot, in simple terms, use this ability to create a permanent effect or to interfere with the free will of anyone else.

“Just think of it as something you can do to turn a potentially dangerous situation in your favor. Or you could use it to help you perform a task you are not capable of on your own. For instance, say you were sparring with the shrine maiden or perhaps even the flower youkai, and you wanted to impress them – you could use Rewrite to temporarily make yourself more skilled.

“For your work, you could use Rewrite to improve your talents then and there, rather then through the 'old-fashioned' way. If you were potentially attacked, you could use Rewrite much like in the previously mentioned sparring scenario, but you could also use it to just make yourself 'lucky' – perhaps a nearly tree branch would fall and hit the attacker. Just keep in mind, Rewrite can only directly change you, and only influence things around you: it cannot be used to direct the actions of anyone but yourself.”

That was pretty crazy... just how in the world did the grimoire even do that? This must be why grimoires are so rare... but, why would you need this kind of thing anyway? Your confusion must've been obvious on your face, or maybe it was due to the way this whole place worked, because Valerie nodded her head.

“Rewrite is intended to help protect you, yes. You can of course, use it for whatever you can think of, but the intent is to help you in situations of danger. The prior owners all tend to die for a reason. I want you to be alert for anything... unusual in the coming days. As you recall last year, Yukari may have... accidentally set some things into motion.”

The hooded avatar chuckled for a moment and shook her head, “And no, before you ask, this is not some kind of threat to Gensokyo. It is merely a threat to you, and you alone. I am merely pre-empting a common reaction to this news, you are not some kind of chosen one protecting Gensokyo or some such... you are merely a target as a result of owning this grimoire, I'm afraid. But today is not the time to discuss this.

“I apologize for having to give you some weighty news on such a relaxing day. Please, just enjoy yourself, that is the most important thing... that, and ensure you keep it close. Do not trust strangers who have a sudden interest in it either. Also... be careful how you use Rewrite. It works for you, yes, but there could be potential side effects if you use it too often. Use all things in moderation. And for now, I bid you farewell.”

~

Your eyes flutter open and you find yourself looking almost up at the sun, so you quickly look to the side instead, blinking your eyes a few times to clear them. As your vision clears... you gulp in surprise, finding the flower youkai practically in your face, her mouth twisted into an amused smile.

“I see you have awoken, little flower.”

“Erm, yes, sorry it was just kind of so comfortable and all, so, I erm, uh...” you sputter, unable to take your gaze off those brilliant red eyes.

Yuuka was really close. Judging by this, you must've rolled over, or been moved, to make room for her on the sunflower like this. She was close enough you could actually make out smells... then again, that was probably just the sunflower. Unless Yuuka smelled like sunflowers? No wait, this wasn't the time to think about that.

“Do not worry, the fairies fall asleep upon them as well for that very reason. I was keeping a close eye on you, of course...” her smile almost turned into a small grin then, but it instead settled for a smirk, “you seemed to have been sleeping quite soundly. I was worried if you did not wake up, you may have even started drooling.”

Oh geez this was embarrassing, “Ahaha, erm, well I did say it was really, really comfortable... it's completely different from sleeping on the bed or something.”

“And now you can see why I consider this home. I do not need a bed, when I can instead sleep on a flower.” you swore you saw a twinkle in those red eyes at that word 'flower', “It is now I would say, about early afternoon. You slept for quite a while, were you tired?”

Were you tired? The way time flowed inside that dreamscape was really wonky... maybe you just had been talking to Valerie for a while? Tough to say. Either way... you had probably spent enough of the day sleeping on a sunflower.

- - -

Okay well, now what... and oh boy, Yuuka is STILL really close.
[ ] It's been a while since you've seen Remilia...
- [ ] Invite Yuuka to come along?
[ ] Why not go shopping in the village with Yuuka? Or just visit the village with her, at least.
[ ] Surprise Reimu with a visit?
- [ ] Yuuka can stick around.
[ ] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?
- [ ] Leave out the bits about Rewrite, just about the danger?
[ ] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[ ] Other? (write-in)

- - -

> 'Rewrite' ability gained.

I kind of did a lot of thinking on this, but felt in the end, while I know you all love the slice-of-life and all... there was totally a plot to this whole CYOA, and I didn't want to just throw it out the window. So, now I just have to kind of work it all back into the story...

In more obvious terms then what Valerie said, think of the grimoire as basically being a visual novel, and Rewrite being something like debugging or hacking the game. That's probably a good way to put it, only you can only debug yourself or things around you, not other characters.
>> No. 174107
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[X] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?
- [X] Leave out the bits about Rewrite, just about the danger?
>> No. 174108
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[X] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?
>> No. 174111
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[X] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?

Why yes, I am pulling for Reina and Yuuka. Why do you ask?
>> No. 174112
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[X] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?
>> No. 174113
File 138045060729.jpg - (7.95KB , 259x194 , getonwithit.jpg ) [iqdb]
174113
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
And if Reina still has time
[X] It's been a while since you've seen Remilia...
- [X] Invite Yuuka to come along?
>> No. 174114
[x] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[x] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?
>> No. 174115
File 138047692768.png - (111.58KB , 457x634 , 858456918e0d08b8a5007e70aa62a978.png ) [iqdb]
174115
[X] … You know, if you leaned forward a little...
[X] Should... you mention your conversation with Valerie?

- - -

There was a lot on your mind right now, or well, at least a few really pressing ones that probably warranted sharing. On the other hand... you also realized Yuuka was really, really close to your face. Probably close enough that if you just kind of, leaned forward a little bit... you could practically kiss her!

And... and... that sounded like kind of a nice idea, for some reason. Maybe it was better to not actually question why, and just kind of go with it. All you'd have to do is just move your head forward a little bit...

Your face and awkward, and slow movements, were quite obvious to the flower youkai, who gave you a coy smile, “Oh my, I can't say I expected you to be so forward little flower...”

Before you could voice an apology, or shyly ask if what you were doing was okay with her, the warm hand that cupped your cheek kind of answered that for you. Then Yuuka closed the gap and pressed her lips against your own.

Your mind thought back to the Christmas party when Yuuka had 'tricked' you into kissing her via mistletoe – mistletoe she had provided no less! - and instantly tried to compare the two sensations. Last time, it had seemed a lot more... gentle? Probably because you had never kissed her before and she had taken the initiative.

This time she seemed a lot more forceful. Was it because you had taken the initiative? Wait, why were you even thinking about this right now!? It was completely cutting into the whole 'enjoying the moment' thing.

After probably a minute, or two – you couldn't really keep track of time – Yuuka pulled back and fixed you with a warm look.

“Not that I would reject such forwardness, of course. I will say, you are a very passive kisser, Reina. You took the initiative, but I would think I was doing all the work.” she chuckled softly and stroked your cheek before pulling her hand away, “Maybe we'll need to work on that sometime.”

“Erm, that is I, ah, uhm...” you stammered, mind racing to think of something, “I... I just kind of thought it was an appropriate gesture and...”

The green-haired woman placed a fingertip on your lips to silence you, “Don't worry at all, little flower. I appreciated it. If you ever want to kiss me, you simply have to do it.” she gazed at you for a few moments, “I think you have something on your mind. Is something bothering you?”

Was there something written on your face or something? Well, there was Valerie's news... and Yuuka was a trusted friend. It may not be a bad idea to open up to her about this kind of thing...

“Well... yeah, I guess there is. Uhm... let me kind of start at the beginning, I think...”

Yuuka raised an eyebrow curiously, sitting up, “Very well little flower. Please, share your worries and concerns with me, and I'll do what I can.”

“Okay, well... see this grimoire I carry with me in this bag here...”

~

During the course of your explanation, and a bit of a recap of your grimoire, you had probably seen more emotions play across Yuuka's face in this one sitting, then you had ever seen. By the time you had finally finished, ending with your last little visit from Valerie, and even touching on that unusual 'Rewrite' thing you had been told about, the flower youkai's expression seemed quite... thoughtful.

“Most interesting... yet also worrying, but it does answer a few questions I have had lingering in my mind...”

“Questions?” you asked curiously.

Yuuka nodded her head, looking at you directly now, “Yes. Recall when I first met you? I will not lie, my initial interest in you was purely because I could detect some of Yukari's... traces, let's say, on you. You are also, interestingly for an outsider, quite magically apt.” she gives you a warm smile, “Of course, I have long since abandoned those questions... they weren't important anymore, you are.

“From what you tell me however, and keeping in mind there were prior owners... I cannot say I can protect you from whatever danger might be coming for you. Not without having to, as a human expression may put it, attach you to my hip.”

Which would be a bit awkward, not that you wouldn't mind having Yuuka's constant company, but it was a bit much to expect, or ask, her to basically give up her daily life to stay around you. You couldn't really do the opposite either.

“I will however, do all I can to keep you safe. Don't count on just me either, the shrine maiden is quite fond of you, and will certainly promise the same. Even if I find her somewhat annoying and flighty, the reporter is also your friend... and the vampire, of course. You have many friends to rely on.” she slowly strokes your cheek again, “I however fear, this isn't a threat you can just hide from. You will likely to have to discover the source of the problem, and fix it. Otherwise, you'll be stuck having to look over your shoulder forever. If you ever need my help, do not hesitate to ask.”

Before you could thank her, or actually say anything, she leaned in again and kissed you again, much more softly then last time, and the kiss was only very brief. She pulled back and rose to her feet, extending her hand towards you.

“Now that you've told me about this, I'm not going to let you finish this day without explaining the situation to those close to you. You have shared with me, it would be rude to deny the same to others. Do you wish to visit the shrine maiden first, or do you want to inform the vampire? We will have to do both regardless, but I will leave the order for you.

“I will however, expect that by the time we finish with one, the second will likely be a place to consider staying the night, if it helps you decide.”

- - -

You're really lucky to have Yuuka, huh?
[ ] Reimu deserves to know right away.
[ ] Remilia has been overdue for a visit, and Patchouli was one of the first to help...
[ ] Other? (write-in)

I'm really bad at writing kisses.
>> No. 174117
>I'm really bad at writing kisses.

LIES.

[x] Reimu deserves to know right away.

Because I wanna try sleeping over at Remi's now.
>> No. 174118
We should tell Kirisame and Shameimaru too. But first:
[x] Reimu deserves to know right away.
>> No. 174125
[X] Reimu deserves to know right away.

Since we're kissing and telling our friends about this, which is kind of a big deal, we should tell Reimu.
Besides, even if that thing is only after Reina anyone who gets caught in-between might still be in trouble so this is a potential incident in the making.
>> No. 174135
File 138051644420.jpg - (199.81KB , 850x1133 , sample-785eb5729ea9e964539773965fc2cd45.jpg ) [iqdb]
174135
[x] Reimu deserves to know right away.

- - -

One comfy nap later and suddenly the whole day was really going in a weird direction... still, it was all for the best.

“Let's go see Reimu first. Being the Hakurei shrine maiden, this kind of thing might fall right into her area of expertise?”

The flower youkai mulled your question over for a moment, “It is... difficult to say. We will see what the shrine maiden thinks. Come, let us be off, once we finish with our business there, we shall head to the mansion I believe.”

“Is it that difficult? I mean...”

Yuuka places a fingertip on your lips to silence you again, using her other hand to take hold of your own, “You will see when we get there. Remember, that she is your friend, and she will do whatever she can to help. That is what is the most important.”

~

Reimu was quite surprised to see you, and doubly more to see Yuuka. When the flower youkai quickly asserted you and her were here for a very specific, and pressing matter, the shrine maiden's face grew all the more puzzled. Nevertheless, she quickly ushered you into the shrine and prepared some tea, before taking her seat.

You then quickly gave her much the same explanation you had given Yuuka. Some of it was facts she was already aware of, of course, but your latest 'warning' took her by surprise – you could see the shock evident on her face – in fact, the 'Rewrite' thing seemed to be barely effect her. When you had finished speaking, the girl's brow was furrowed as she stared into her tea.

A heavy silence hung in the room before she opened her mouth, her words careful and slow, “While I can protect you whenever you are around me, I... cannot do anything beyond that. This is not an incident, not with what you have told me.”

“Does it not have the potential to become one?” offered Yuuka cautiously, before you could respond.

Reimu gulped and glanced at you, before looking to Yuuka, “That is a possibility, yes. However, I cannot act upon that as it stands now. Based upon what Reina has told me, this is something that will specifically seek her out. It does not suggest whatever this is, will interfere, or effect anything else.”

She sighed and ran a hand through her hair, “It's possible I am wrong, but I must remain neutral in affairs. She is a dear... a very dear friend of mine, but I cannot show favoritism to her regardless. As... as painful as it is, I can only protect her in the capacity of a friend, and not in the capacity as Gensokyo's protector.”

“That is what I had expected...” stated the flower youkai softly, “I am certain it is not an easy decision to make. Should the situation change in anyway...?”

“If it changes in any way, I have to know immediately. I can possibly change the decision then, and classify it as a positive incident. In which case, yes, I can – no, I will – seek out the source and fix it. Until then though...” her eyes flicked to you and she focused her gaze on you, “Until then, I can only do anything if it happens with me around. I'm sorry Reina.”

You shook your head and gave the girl a soft smile, “No, it's okay Reimu, I... understand.”

Reimu returned the smile, but you could see the sadness in her eyes, “No... no you don't. It's hard to explain it really to an outsider, but while I go out and solve incidents to keep Gensokyo safe, I'm also responsible for keeping the balance around here as well. As much as I want to immediately go out, start investigating, and protect you before anything can even happen... that would clearly be showing favoritism to a human.”

“It is difficult to say how the youkai would respond to such an act of favoritism. Not all may care, but it may tarnish the shrine maiden's reputation.” stated Yuuka, “Until your... problem... has the potential to effect Gensokyo as a whole, her hands are tied.”

“Of course, it's only my hands that are tied. Yuuka is certainly capable of doing whatever she pleases, but I somehow suspect even she cannot do much based on such vague warnings. Marisa... well, she's stubborn and driven, but we are horribly lacking in details.” the shrine maiden took a drink of her tea and sighed, “Aya can't be of much help either. Sadly, I don't think there's really anyway to do much until it happens...”

“I was kind of expecting that to be the outcome. It would be a bit too much to impose myself upon everyone's life and to constantly look over my shoulder. It's... kind of scary though.”

“I can't say I know what it's like. I don't even know what could possibly be after you, if it's not someone native to Gensokyo, they might not even be playing by the Spell Card rules, which would certainly raise a few problems...” Reimu sighed and shook her head, “I do know, that as long as you're with me, I'll never let anything harm you. Thank you for letting me know about this, even if it saddens me about my inability to do anything about it right now.”

“Sorry for kind of putting a big problem right in your lap, and bringing the whole mood of the day down.” you replied with a soft chuckle, trying to lighten the mood, “I never would've thought owning this grimoire would really do all this.”

Another heavy silence hung in the room, the three of you seated around the table, merely drinking tea. You thought Yuuka had wanted to leave right away, but perhaps there was no need to be quite so urgent... suddenly, Reimu slammed her tea cup on the table, slapping her forehead with her other hand.

“Ah! Of course! Why didn't I ever think of it before!?” she exclaimed.

Yuuka looked at her with surprise, an eyebrow raised, “What is it, shrine maiden?”

Reimu pointed at you, “You said whenever Patchouli looked at the grimoire, it kind of shifted words? Normally it's blank and all, but she found a way to reveal text, but it was always stuff she couldn't read, right?”

It was a while back, but you were rather certain that was more or less how it worked, “Yes, I think that sounds about right.”

“Well, besides letting Remilia know and all that – I can look into getting Marisa informed if you want, and even Aya – there is one other person you can go to. I... should've thought of it sooner but...” she paused for a moment and shook her head, “I guess I had thought of it, but I feel a bit unsure about it, but... there's one other person who can maybe help uncover secrets of your grimoire, maybe. She might try to keep the thing though, if you're not careful...”

“I thought only magicians would have any idea how to read this kind of thing? Patchouli seems quite knowledgeable and even she couldn't read it...”

“In the village, there's this little... bookstore, I guess, called the Suzunaan. Over there works this young girl, I've known her for a while, but ah, anyway, her name is Kosuzu Motoori. She's not a youkai or anything, but she has this most interesting ability... any book she touches, she can read it. No matter what – I heard she recently found some book written in an ancient Tengu script, that even Aya couldn't read.

“I am... a bit hesitant to have you see her. She has a hobby of collecting 'demon books', potentially dangerous books written by youkai, and I think I remember her saying grimoires are a kind of demon book. She might not be a mage, but she can probably find out a way to read it... or at least, she may have a good idea of how it works.”

That... that sounds kind of incredible actually.

“You sound kind of unsure about this whole idea though.”

Reimu sighed, “Like I said, she really likes collecting demon books. You have to make it very clear you can't sell it, tell her you'll die without if you really have too. But, well, I'm hesitate to get her involved just because of her love of the darn things. Demon books are highly dangerous, and if it turns out your grimoire is one of them...” she took in a breath and exhaled, “well, it's up to you. Either way, you should let Remilia know as well, she's like a patron of yours or something, right?

“I'll go let Marisa and Aya know, at least. They'll probably freak out, so don't be too surprised if you find them hunting you down to interrogate you, or for them to show up at your house or something. We'll find some way to get this to work. Sadly, I still doubt we can actually fix anything until something happens.”

The flower youkai set her tea cup down and nodded, “Yes, that is the conclusion I have reached as well. We can all take turns watching Reina easily enough, but it will not really protect her... we cannot solve the problem without knowing more of it. A sheltered and protected life, with a constant element of danger, is not a fate I would wish to place on her shoulders.”

“If you want to go seek out Kosuzu, I can give you some more specific directions. But ultimately, it's going to be up to you Reina. I wouldn't suggest keeping Remilia waiting, she might complain about if she finds out everyone got to know before her,” joked the shrine maiden, smirking, “Kosuzu can always wait until tomorrow if you want.”

- - -

This day is feeling really heavy all of a sudden...
[ ] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.
[ ] There may not be a lot of time, but visiting this Kosuzu might be a good idea...
[ ] Other?
>> No. 174136
[x] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.
>> No. 174137
[x] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.
>> No. 174138
[X] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.

We're still in the middle of informing people who need to know about this, and while Remilia doesn't need to know she will want to know, and to her that's similar enough to get huffy if we "leave her out of the loop".
Kozusu can wait until we've had a chance to talk to everyone first. (And probably stop Aya from writing an article and Marisa from Master Sparking whatever happens to look suspicious at the moment.)
>> No. 174139
[X] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.
>> No. 174140
[x] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.
>> No. 174141
File 138055428454.jpg - (324.45KB , 850x1203 , sample-e70bf7230875ce283318cdbb75cc529c.jpg ) [iqdb]
174141
[x] Reimu has a point, better head over to the mansion now.

- - -

Kosuzu seemed kind of interesting... but it was already getting into the late afternoon, and in your prior experiences, any kind of grimoire inspection usually took quite a while. If you went to find her, it might be night before you could get away, and that would probably leave Remilia in quite the mood when she found out.

No, the visit to Kosuzu could wait, but it was a good idea to let everyone know on the same day at least, so they don't have to hear it from someone else first.

“I'll go see her tomorrow then. I better not keep Remilia, she might be upset enough that she's the last person I personally went to go talk to.” you said with a soft chuckle.

Reimu smirked and nodded, “Yeah, good luck with that. I'll go let the other two know, and ah before you go...” the shrine maiden rushed off somewhere, and returned after a moment or two holding a piece of paper, “Here, directions to Suzunaan, for tomorrow.”

You took the slip of paper and carefully tucked it away into your bag, “Thanks. Okay, good luck handling Marisa, I don't think Aya will be a problem... although, uhm, she should probably not think of publishing this in her paper...”

“Don't worry about it, I know how to handle Aya. Marisa... well, her too. Don't blame me if they start trying to hunt you down and question you personally, of course.” the shrine maiden looked to Yuuka, “I'll entrust her to you for today then. And, well... nevermind. Okay, off the two of you go.”

~

The flight to the mansion was quite uneventful. While Meiling seemed surprised to see you, with Yuuka as your escort she seemed to only meekly ask what you were doing here, and then quickly ushered you in when you said you had to speak to Remilia. You never had a problem getting in the mansion, but you somehow felt Yuuka being here made the poor gatekeeper a bit on edge...

As soon as you opened the main doors to the mansion, Sakuya was already in front of you, “Please, right this way.”

You didn't even see her anywhere near the gate, yet she already knew...? Then again, maybe she just knew if you were here, it was to see Remilia? Regardless, she led you down the always surprisingly large mansion in silence, you recognize the way she headed... this was to the 'throne room', as you jokingly called it. That vampire really liked to impress people or something...

As expected, the head maid led you to the room, and stood by her lady's side. Remilia sat in her chair casually, her eyes flicking to Yuuka with some measure of surprise, “I didn't expect you to bring a guest... is something the matter? From what I hear, you made it quite clear something urgent was on your mind?”

You took in a breath and sighed, “Well, it's like this...”

Unlike Reimu, the vampire seemed mostly neutral in her expression, although as you neared the end of your explanation, she had interlaced her fingers and rested her chin on them, as she stared at you. When you had finished, she leaned back in her seat, tapping one of her fingers on the arm of her throne. The blue-haired girl glanced to Sakuya, who bowed and quickly left the room.

“Sakuya will let Pache know as well. In the meantime... I've never heard of anything like this before. What are you planning to do about it?”

“Uhm, well... there's not a whole lot I can really do about it. I mean, I don't even know who to look for. I can't really expect someone to guard me for the rest of my life or something.”

The vampire nodded, “And I cannot expect you to give up your life and just stay in the mansion either, even if I am certain it is the most safe place you could be. You have really gotten yourself tangled into something alright... although, I suspect you have little fault in the situation. That grimoire is just something you've always owned, right?”

“I think my parents had it first, but... yes. I don't really know how they got it, or when... it's been a mystery to me all my life until recently, so...”

“Can I entrust Reina to your care for the night, vampire?” asked Yuuka coolly.

Remilia raised an eyebrow, “Of course. You do not intend to stay, or perhaps return her home for the night?”

“It is her choice if she wants me to stay or not, but I think she should stay here for the night. After the shrine maiden informs the other two, they will probably go to her house immediately – I want her to have a good night's sleep at least.”

“Well, at least I wasn't the last to know at least,” stated Remilia with an amused chuckle, “but certainly. She is after all, my valuable worker, I can't let anything happen to her under my own roof. I will have Sakuya prepare her a room... and if need be, I can have one prepared for you as well, or perhaps you can share?

The vampire flashed you a toothy, and fang-showing grin, “Or would you want to sleep with me tonight? Hahahaha...”

- - -

Well, that didn't go so bad...
[ ] A room for you, and a room for Yuuka!
[ ] Just the room for yourself.
[ ] W-well, you can certainly share a room with her...
[ ] … Well if... if she's offering...
[ ] Other
>> No. 174142
[X] WWhy don't we all share a room? It could be like a sleepover or something
>> No. 174143
[X] A room for you and Yuuka!

Protective embrace.
>> No. 174144
[x] W-well, you can certainly share a room with her...

I assume this is the sharing a room with Yuuka option?
>> No. 174145
[X] Just the room for yourself.
>> No. 174146
>>174144
Yes. In hindsight, I should have made it more clear.
>>174143
This one I imagine is counting as "share a room with Yuuka" also.
>> No. 174148
[x] W-well, you can certainly share a room with her...
>> No. 174157
File 138067918062.jpg - (71.15KB , 720x540 , 94938b73e4f2ecca1d13d0c5f0970464.jpg ) [iqdb]
174157
[x] W-well, you can certainly share a room with her...

- - -

“I'll have to respectfully decline your personal offer there Remilia.” you say with a nervous chuckle.

Remilia shook her head and waved her hand, “It is fine, it was merely a jest. I do not think you would find my personal bed very comfortable. We'd have to snuggle nice and close, and I'd have to squeezed up against you, I think.” she added, with that toothy grin.

Somehow you felt she had pictured the scene a little too well... “But, ah, I'll share a room with Yuuka that's just fine.”

She nodded, and as if on cue, Sakuya suddenly reappeared with a slight curtsey, “Sakuya, please take Yuuka to the room, and then send Reina after. I want to talk to her a little bit.”

The silver-haired woman nodded and inclined her head at Yuuka, “If you do not mind...?”

“There is no problem. I will see you in a bit, little flower.” said the flower youkai, quietly departing following her guide.

The vampire carefully watched the pair leave, waiting for the door to shut before her red eyes flicked back to you, “I think she likes you.”

You jump in surprise, mouth agape for a moment, “Wh-why are you bringing that up!?”

“It seemed like an interesting topic to talk about. I missed having you visit, although I suppose, part of that is my fault in not providing enough work for you recently. And then there was the whole rin incident... that was quite an embarrassing mistake on my part.” she sighed and shook her head.

That was a quick change of topic, right from a teasing remark then to business... you shook your head and offered the vampire a smile, “It's fine, really. I wasn't really pressed for money anyway...”

“Even if you insist it was not, I will counter that it was a huge problem! I have been here for a while, I shouldn't have made such a blunder...” she lets out another deep sigh, “I'm too used to Sakuya handling all the finances, so I guess I just never thought about it. She didn't say anything, but I could just tell she was laughing at me when she found out.”

“Sakuya, laughing? I can't really imagine that... she's so... calm and... I guess, refined? I've seen her smile a bit, and I swear that's about it. I can't imagine her actually laughing.”

The blue-haired girl laughs, “Oh yes, I know what you mean. Trust me, Sakuya is certainly the 'perfect maid', she's all business-like... when business is required. When she isn't working, which I will sadly admit is quite rare, she is a very relaxed individual. She's also a vicious card player, I wouldn't suggest gambling against her unless you're prepared to lose.”

“Really? Huh... I would've never guessed. Though, I guess I only ever see the business side of her...”

“Like I said, she's a very good worker, but she's also really good at relaxing. Maybe when I give her some time off, I can send her to your house sometime, we'll see.” Remilia reclined into her chair, “You've really got a pretty crazy life. I'm sure you're in good hands though, and I will of course do all I can to help.

“Thanks Remilia, it really means a lot. I'm lucky to have such great friends.”

“You are certainly lucky to have my friendship, this is true.” boasted the girl with a grin, “Before I send you off to join your friend, let me just say I'm going to do some adjusting of your payment I think. This month will be a bit larger then usual, consider it my apology for my earlier blunders. I'll send Sakuya along, I think... might be a good way to have you see her when she's not working.

“If you find out anything, please, let me know right away. Meiling knows to let you through the gate, no matter the circumstances, so even all you want to do is chat, I will gladly do so. I will also let Pache know, she won't admit it, but your grimoire interests her greatly... because she can't figure out a thing about it.”

“Apologies for interrupting, milady.” speaks up Sakuya suddenly, “But miss Kazami has been attended to. Shall I lead miss Roots to her quarters?”

“Ah Sakuya, right on time as always. And of course, I've finished my little chit-chat. Also, please, I don't think she likes being address too quite so formally.”

The maid curtsied, “Of course milady. Well, Reina, please follow me. I believe you will your room for the night, accommodating as always.”

As she led you out, Remilia made one last comment, “Sleep well, Reina. Also Sakuya, I hear Reina is quite good at cards. Maybe you two need to arrange something sometime.”

You considered a retort, but the door shut behind you just as her words finished. Sakuya seemed to be completely unphased by it, and merely gestured down the hallway. As always, the mansion's size always boggled your mind, but Sakuya never even faltered in her steps, seemingly knowing the layout like the back of her hand... which she probably did, in all honesty.

It was not a long walk before she stood beside a door and gestured at it, bowing slightly, “Miss Kazami is already waiting for you. Please, have a restful sleep. Do not worry about finding your way out, or to where you desire in the morning. I will guide you both.”

“Thank you Sakuya, ah, have a good night yourself as well. I'll see you in the morning.”

The maid curtseys one last time, and then quietly departs as you knock on the door to let Yuuka know you are entering, and then open it. It had been a while since you had been in one of the mansion's rooms, but they were always so breathtaking. Large and spacious, with an equally large bed within and well... basically all really fancy, and expensive furniture. Your professionalism noted everything was of some very good make... although it did look a little worn, and the sheen and polish was lacking.

Yuuka was already laying down in the bed, her back towards you for the moment. You quietly crept towards the wardrobe and looked inside, finding as you had expected, some change of clothing for bed. How Sakuya, or maybe Remilia, knew what to put in here was beyond you. As you help yourself to the pajamas, and set aside your own clothing, you notice that at some point a... joker card had slipped into your pocket? How unusual.

Once you had finished changing, you turned and nearly jumped, startled to find the flower youkai gazing at you with an amused expression.

“I apologize for not letting you know I was still awake, little flower. But I couldn't resist,” she chuckled softly, “Your underwear is quite cute, it is plain, but I think it suits you.”

Your face reddens from embarrassment as you stick your tongue out at her, “Geez Yuuka, I expect that kind of behavior from Yukari, or Marisa, but not you.”

The flower youkai smiles softly, “You should expect it from more people then. At least, from youkai, we do tend to be quite playful after all... young youkai however, are more likely to be, how to put it... passionate. But also dangerous and violent, potentially, so always watch yourself around younger youkai, from us elder youkai, you have little to fear. We merely prefer teasing and the like.”

“Uh huh, right I'll have to keep that in mind then.” you reply with a small grin, making your way to the bed and climbing in, “Thanks for doing all this again.”

“Thank you for sharing it with me. I understand it may have not been an easy decision, but it was the correct one. You have many supportive friends as well, little flower, so you are quite fortunate.” she states, “Do you mind if I hold you, little flower?”

You blush more, a bit relieved she can't see your face, “Su-sure... uhm... g-good night, Yuuka.”

The green-haired youkai shifted to move closer to you, her arms gently squeezing your waist, as she pressed her – oh my. Well, she wasn't naked that much was good, but you somehow felt she wasn't wearing all that much, or she had the most unusual taste in sleeping wear.

“Good night Reina. You have my word that nothing can harm you, so long as I am around. While I cannot be beside you forever, when I am, always rest easy.”

You gulp and nod your head slightly, “Th-thank you. That means a lot.”

It was a little hard to sleep, with Yuuka so close and her practically pressing into your back, but you somehow managed it.

~

You didn't exactly remember seeing a window in the room, but somehow you felt the sun shining on you anyway, signaling that morning had arrived. Yuuka had barely moved in her sleep, but she had also not really tangled herself onto you that much. Judging by the steady breathing, the flower youkai was still asleep, so you didn't think of removing her arms yet...

Besides, before you get out of the comfort of this bed, you should probably figure out what your course of action was going to be. Everyone knew by now, but there was still a lot you could do... you had monopolized Yuuka's time yesterday, and somehow you had the feeling, she couldn't be with you all day today, it would be kind of selfish...

- - -

So comfortable... good time to plan.
[ ] You should go see this Kosuzu.
- [ ] See if Yuuka can accompany you?
- [ ] Ask for Yuuka to bring you to someone else to have them accompany you? (Reimu, Aya, Marisa, other?)
- [ ] Go see her alone.
[ ] Does Patchouli know anything new? Or Remilia?
[ ] Maybe you should go home first, Aya or Marisa, maybe both, are probably going to head there as well.
[ ] Other?
>> No. 174161
[x] Maybe you should go home first, Aya or Marisa, maybe both, are probably going to head there as well.
>> No. 174166
[X] Check if Pactchouli's figured out anything important
[X] If not, go home, check in with Aya/Marisa
-[X] Bring Yuuka

If Patchouli has figured out something important, it's best to find out now, but if she hasn't I don't want the update to be just
“‘Hey, any news?’ ‘nope’ ‘kay then’”
or us getting sidetracked chatting with Pache and leaving our friends waiting. I think we should bring Yuuka because we should go to Suzunaan afterwards and Yuuka can discourage Motoori from trying to take our book. Marisa could probably protect us too but she isn't feared like Yuuka is.
>> No. 174167
[x] Maybe you should go home first, Aya or Marisa, maybe both, are probably going to head there as well.

Remilia said she'd let us know if anything came up. Let's check up on Aya and Marisa, maybe get one of them come with us to Kosuzu's.
>> No. 174184
[x] Maybe you should go home first, Aya or Marisa, maybe both, are probably going to head there as well.
>> No. 174203
File 13810395314.jpg - (120.84KB , 850x410 , sample-9cf22869dd692ccacf360b58b0d8b5b7.jpg ) [iqdb]
174203
[x] Maybe you should go home first, Aya or Marisa, maybe both, are probably going to head there as well.

- - -

There was a lot of things to consider, but heading back home seemed like a pretty good idea. Aya and Marisa may try to find you there, and it would be a bit easier to wait for them at home, then have them just drop into your lap – so to speak – somewhere else out of the blue.

With that decided, you had a more immediate pressing concern of a still sleeping flower youkai holding you. You could, of course, just free yourself but that might wake her, and that seemed kind of rude... but you also wanted to get the day going! Probably just a habit, you were always used to waking up early and going to bed late.

Just how were you going to solve this delicate situation...?

“If you wanted me to release you, little flower, you only have to ask. I can practically hear the gears turning in your head.” taunted Yuuka softly.

Oh. Well, that solved that problem rather nicely, “Erm, s-sorry. I just wasn't sure if I should wake you up, or... well, yeah. Wasn't sure at all how to go about it.”

“Of course little flower, I understand. If you ever find yourself in this situation with me again, feel free to slip on out. If I wish to sleep more, I can be quite the heavy sleeper, truth be told...” Yuuka chuckled quietly and ruffled your hair, “I suppose I was a bit lighter tonight, perhaps because of all the things on my mind...”

You sighed and nodded your head, “Yeah, I know what you mean... second year in Gensokyo and suddenly everything is kind of just thrown around.”

“You'll get through it Reina, along with the rest of us. Don't worry about it, the shrine maiden at least, has dealt with far worse. Of course, she can't help within her official capacity but still... I'm sure that thief will be busy.”

“Actually, thinking of that 'thief'...” you mention with an awkward chuckle.

The flower youkai ruffled your hair, “You wish to go home then? I do not mind at all little flower. I will confess that while I may want it, I am not capable of being with you all the time. Well then, we should get out of bed then and then we can attend to the matter of getting you home.”

As if on cue, there was a gentle knocking on the door before it cautious opened and the silver-haired maid peered into the room, “I have prepared breakfast in bed for the two of you. I took the liberty of also washing your clothes, they have already been placed in the wardrobes. Please, when you finish eating simply set the trays aside, and wait for me outside to guide you out.”

The maid then entered the room proper and presented you and Yuuka with trays, laden with a breakfast, before she curtseyed and departed the room without another room. Business-like and punctual as always... and with the most uncanny ability to seem to know what you wanted, before you even had to think about it. She was good at her job that was for sure...

The breakfast was light but filling, and quite tasty, it didn't take you long to finish. Once the food was finished the two of you got out of bed and changed back into your normal clothes – you noted Yuuka was a quick changer, you hadn't even seen what she was wearing to bed – and then left the room as instructed.

Sakuya quietly walked up to the two of you and gestured for the two of you to follow, and before long the three of you were at the large doors the marked the entrance of the mansion, “Thank you for your visit. I hope to serve you two once more. Mistress Remilia has informed me that when she discovers anything, she will let you know immediately Reina.”

“Thank you Sakuya, I'll plan to come by more often. You're always welcome to come by my house for reasons other then business though, you know...”

The silver-haired woman smiled softly, “Of course Reina. Have a pleasant day.”

As if on cue, the doors quietly opened and you departed with a final wave. As Yuuka picked you up and floated off into the sky, you caught sight of the red-headed gatekeeper idly standing guard at the gate, she managed a quick wave in your direction which you returned. The flight back home was only interrupted by some idle conversation between the two of you, and as you drew closer to home you could already tell company was waiting – the black-haired tengu was seated atop the roof of the house, after all, gazing off into the distance.

She quickly spotted the two of you approaching, but merely remained seated, only hopping off the roof when Yuuka finally landed and set you down.

“As a reporter, you're a great source of material I have to say Reina. A talented outsider with a skill we don't really have, the uncanny ability to make friends... then this grimoire business...” the tengu sighs and throws up her friends, “But as a friend, this grimoire business... has me worried. I've never heard of anything even remotely like this.”

The flower youkai patted you on the head, “I must be off little flower. Try to stay out of trouble, and enjoy your day. Do not try to worry about it too much... it is a bad situation, but you will gain little by dwelling on it too much. As it stands now, it is beyond your control.”

Kind of an odd way of looking at it maybe, but it was also kind of true... you knew painfully little about the grimoire, so without more knowledge on it, there really wasn't anything you can do. As much as you really wanted too...

“Y-yeah, I'll do my best. Thank you Yuuka.”

With one last wave, the green-haired youkai floated away. The tengu watched her leave and sighed, shaking her head, “She's really calm about this. Then again, I shouldn't be all that surprised... I've only ever seen her really riled up if plants or flowers are involved. So... whats your plan?”

You glance at the tengu and scratch your cheek, “Erm, well... not sure really. I was kind of curious to see if anyone was even here. I was actually expecting Marisa as well...”

“Oh, she's here,” Aya pointed at the house, “that's why I've been all quiet. I don't think she knows you're here yet otherwise. Want to go say hi?”

“The hell!? How long have you been standin' out here with Reina and not tellin' me!?” screamed a voice from above suddenly.

Even if Aya had not just informed you Marisa was present, you would've found out pretty quickly from that. Looking up, you saw the blonde girl pointing her finger accusingly at the tengu as she climbed out of a second story window and quickly floated to the ground.

“It's only been a few minutes, calm down...” you offer diplomatically.

Now the witch's finger shifted to pointing at you, “How can you be so calm about this!? I mean, I kinda knew some of that stuff about your grimoire 'n all but still! This is serious! Really, really serious! An' Reimu givin' me that shit about not being able to do anythin' either!” Marisa threw up her hands, “Well, don't you worry, I'm gonna get on the case and figure it out! Jus' leave it to me!”

Well, she was spirited as always... guess somethings never really change. Come to think of it, you hadn't seen Marisa in quite a while. Last you heard she was hanging out with Alice a lot more, but you hadn't ever really followed up on it much.

“Well, Yuuka is kind of right... I can't really just stress out about it. If I do, I'm just going to end up barricading myself in the house or something. Doesn't sound all that good... but ah, thank you for offering to help. It really does mean a lot to me.”

Marisa puffed out her cheeks as if about to unleash another verbal assault, but she paused and let it all out in a single puff, “Alrigh' I see your point... you know, you don't really look like it, but you're pretty tough when you have ta be Reina. I always knew you were an interestin' outsider.”

“I'm pretty sure your original interest in her was mostly sexu-” started Aya slyly.

“Oi, oi, oi! Shut yer mouth!” said the witch quickly, covering the tengu's mouth with her hands.

The black-haired youkai pushed the witch away, a grin plastered on her face, “Ah that never gets old. Well, with Yuuka gone for the day, I place myself at your disposal for the day if you like.”

The blonde girl shot the tengu a glare, almost as if angry the tengu had offered before her, “I have some ideas, but same offer from me! Whatever ya want!”

- - -

You really are kinda lucky to have friends like this, aren't you?
[ ] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [ ] Bring Marisa?
- [ ] Reporter Aya!
- [ ] Both of them, why not?
- [ ] Go it alone.
[ ] Yuuka said you shouldn't worry, so why not just hang out?
- [ ] Invite Marisa/Aya/Both to come in and do something? (write-in)
- [ ] The village has some fun stuff to do! Should go back there with Marisa/Aya/Both. (write-in)
[ ] Other? (write-in)
>> No. 174205
[x] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [x] Both of them, why not?

Marisa knows Kosuzu, right? And Aya's a reporter, so she might have an idea on questions to ask. Besides, the more the merrier.
>> No. 174206
[x] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [x] Both of them, why not?
>> No. 174208
[x] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [x] Bring Marisa?

We spent a nice chunk of time with Aya recently, let's use this to catch up with Marisa some.
>> No. 174210
[X] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
-[X] Both of them, why not?

Sounds good to me. Let's visit the bookworm.
>> No. 174211
[x] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [x] Bring Marisa?
>> No. 174213
File 138120831459.jpg - (247.70KB , 850x1202 , sample-cf1b5087e1c209834dc7ca4f60c7c298.jpg ) [iqdb]
174213
[x] Meeting Kosuzu sounds like the most interesting and best option right now.
- [x] Both of them, why not?

- - -

“Actually, I'm not sure if Reimu mentioned this, but when I saw her last she suggested I go meet this girl named Kosuzu in the village...” you mention after a moment's pause.

The blonde witch snapped her fingers, “Ah! That's actually a pretty good idea. She knows a lot about books and stuff... not sure if she really knows more then Patchouli, but she's certainly really knowledgable still.”

“More importantly I'd say, she has this really unusual ability to pretty much read anything. I remember she recently found some old book written in ancient tengu or something... I'm ashamed to say I couldn't even read the thing...” the tengu sighed and slumped her shoulders,” But she figured it out in no time at all.”

That sounded like what Reimu had told you more or less, so it was good to get confirmation from both of them on it.

“Yeah, that's kind of what Reimu told me also. Would the two of you mind coming along with me? I figure she knows the two of you better then some complete stranger like me...” you admit with a weak chuckle.

Marisa puffs out her chest, “Certainly! That's an easy enough request, come on let's get goin'! Kosuzu'll be up and about by now. I've been wantin' ta get my hands on a few of her books anyway... two birds, one stone 'n all that.”

“You always seem to have some kind of ulterior motive, don't you Marisa...?” accused Aya cautiously, peering at the witch.

“Noooo idea whatcha even talkin' 'bout Aya. Well, follow me! We'll be there before ya know it. I think you'll like Kosuzu, so I hope ya can remember where her shop is! One of the best places to find books... she's got a lot of books from the outside also! She might really take a liking to you, now that I think about it...”

~

The Suzunaan was a rather small, and non-descript shop in all honesty. It had a very old-fashion Japanese-style look to it – which really made a lot of sense, given it was native to Gensokyo and all... surprisingly, it didn't seem to be tucked away into the 'commercial' areas of the village, and was more off on its own. Perhaps that explained why it seemed so old? It was in decent enough state of repair though...

The interior of the shop wasn't really all that impressive, but it was probably normal for a Japanese shop in all honesty. It wasn't too big either, but you could see that much of the store was being used to house the lines of bookshelves. As the three of you entered, a girl seated at the counter – who seemed to have been busying herself reading a book – looked up and saw the three of you, she quickly flashed a big grin at the three of you and waved cheerfully.

“Marisa! I see you brought some friends with you!” the twintailed girl carefully shut her book, the bells in her hair jingling as she moved her head, “Ah, I recognize you, you're the reporter, Shameimaru Aya, right?”

The crow tengu flashed the girl a smile, saluting her with a finger, “Yup that's me! I wrote an article about your translation of that ancient tengu book, if you remember.”

The young girl nodded her head enthusiastically, “I kept the article! I've got it tucked away somewhere...” now the girl's red eyes flicked to you and gazed at you carefully, “Hmmm... I have a pretty good memory of my customer's and anyone they bring but... I don't remember you at all...”

You offer the young girl a reassuring smile, “This is my first time here yeah... actually one of my few visits to the village in general. But ah, I'm Reina Roots, it's nice to - “

“Reina Roots!? I know that name!” declared the girl suddenly slamming her hands on the counter, “I read about you in one of Aya's papers! You're that outsider, right? With the uhm... ah... that skillset! Aaaand, I've heard from Marisa a few times, that you own a grimoire right!?”

She was a very... excitable girl. The two of you hadn't been properly introduced, but there wasn't much doubt in your mind this was Motoori Kosuzu that you had been told about.

“Calm down there Kosuzu, don't get so excited. Yeah this is Reina, that fi- err, nice girl I've told ya about. And well, I'll let her explain herself.”

“Wait, wait, wait!” interrupted the girl, tapping her forehead, “Now that you've got me thinking, Akyuu came by... months ago, I think? Talking about this strange book... I didn't think too much of it at the time, nor did she I guess but... ah, that's why you're here right?” questioned Kosuzu, a twinkle in her eye.

“Ah, well... y-yes, actually.” you admit with a nervous chuckle, reaching into your bag to pull out the grimoire, “I've had Akyuu and Patchouli both look at it and well, they couldn't really find that much out...”

Kosuzu held her hands out expectantly and you approached the counter to hand the book over, which she immediately flipped open, her eyes quickly skimming the page. As she turned the page, she raised an eyebrow curiously, rubbing her chin and squinted at the page, “How unusual... I've never seen anything like this...” she muttered softly to herself and then turned the page once more, her reaction again the same, “Most curious... this is certainly no ordinary book. I mean, I guess that much was obvious but... this is unlike anything I've ever seen...”

You shook your head, “I'm afraid I don't exactly follow...”

The young girl placed the grimoire down on the table, flipping to the first page and pointing at it, “This first page is written in normal japanese text, so nothing that unusual about it. Aside from the fact it seems like the text keeps trying to... vanish, I suppose. That's pretty unusual, so that was my first guess... but now see when I turn the page...” she carefully turns the page and points at it, “now the text is different. I think it's ancient chinese, or something. Then on the third page, it changed to French, I think.

“If my guess is right, the next page will also be another language. I've never encountered a book, or a grimoire, or well, even a demon book that has done this. For whatever reason, this grimoire is trying its utmost to ensure it cannot be read. I can't really figure out why though... so far, nothing written in it seems that unusual Well...” the girl paused and tapped her chin, “I take that back. It's not full of arcane secrets, I think, but it is unusual. It seems to be a written account of everything you've done since you came here. Kind of like a story, actually.”

“So you mean it's almost like a journal or something?” inquired Aya curiously.

Kosuzu rubbed her chin, “Not quite like that no. I can tell from reading it that Reina clearly didn't pen it herself. The viewpoint is more like third person, the kind of thing you expect from a narrator I suppose? I'd say it's more like the book is actually cataloging its owner's everyday life. That's kind of mundane really but... the fact it's trying to hide all this, makes me think there's a lot more to it then that.

“I'll confess that while I know a lot about this kind of thing, I cannot say if I can figure out the specifics. I can read the whole thing, and maybe something will come up but...” the red-eyed girl licked her lips, “But there's also the chance that well...”

“That it's a demon book, or somethin' right Kosuzu?” finished Marisa.

“I think by this point, I'm almost certain. I don't think I've ever heard tales of a human making anything like this, so my best guess is a youkai created it. While I think it's certainly a demon book, I cannot say if it's going to unleash anything nasty by reading it...” the girl cautiously flipped to the next page, “if anything, I'd guess if anything nasty came with this book, it's already out and about.”

Aya blinked her eyes in surprise, peering at Kosuzu, “Really? Why would you say that?”

The twintailed girl flipped back to the first page for a moment, then resumed her reading, “Because if something nasty was locked up in this book, it would've came out by now. A demon book typically works once you've read just a few pages of it. Since nothing has happened, I suspect someone had read it earlier and whatever was locked up inside, already came out.”

You had read that book a lot back in the outside world... but it did belong to your parents originally, right? Had they ever read it? Was it you reading it made it... do whatever? But you don't remember anything ever happening...

“If whatever was inside came out, it probably couldn't come into the outside world.” answered Kosuzu, as if reading your mind, “It's probably a youkai, so it can't really exist in that world. Even if one person believes in it, too much of the world doesn't so it's life would be terribly short. More likely is it woke up, and just went over here, or somewhere else. It's not that unusual though... not everything that comes out of a demon book is all that dangerous anyway.”

- - -

Well, seems you learned a few things...
[ ] Question Kosuzu.
- [ ] Uhm... what is a demon book anyway?
- [ ] Ask her if she can read the whole thing?
- [ ] What does she think of it?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] That was a bit enlightening, but maybe it's time to go... (write-in)
[ ] Other (write-in)

- - -

I could not think of votes. Bleh.
>> No. 174221
>>174213
[x]other
[x] "Have you ever heard of books that treat illnesses, or bind themselves to their owners?"
>> No. 174230
[x] Question Kosuzu.
- [x] What does she think of it?

Your assessment, Miss Kosuzu?
>> No. 174240
[X] Question Kosuzu.
-[X] Ask her if she can read the whole thing?
-[X] What does she think of it?

Even those bits about the kissing. And the bath. And that one time with the daikon radish and dime store paperback.
>> No. 174260
[X] Question Kosuzu.
-[X] Ask her if she can read the whole thing?
-[X] What does she think of it?
>> No. 174294
File 138155097976.jpg - (23.50KB , 472x472 , 075e5f5048364d534107fa777a71dfeb.jpg ) [iqdb]
174294
[X] Question Kosuzu.
-[X] Ask her if she can read the whole thing?
-[X] What does she think of it?

- - -

Despite how young this girl looked, she really did seem to know quite a bit... she had certainly offered a lot more then Patchouli had, despite her best tries. Or what you figured was her best anyway. For now, she was certainly going to be your best source of information...

“Do you think you can read the entire thing?” you asked curiously.

The twintailed girl puffed out her cheeks, “Of course I can! I haven't found a book, demon or otherwise, that I couldn't read. It's simply a matter of time...” the girl hefted the book, as if testing its weight, “this isn't exactly an afternoon's read. It would take at least a few days, I think, and even then that would to just read it, that wouldn't really imply any actual understanding of it.”

“There's a... difference?” you responded a bit surprised.

“Look at it this way Reina, when ya read a book, it's pretty straightforward right? But just 'cause you read somethin', doesn't mean you actually got what the words were tryin' to convey, you understand?” offered Marisa hopefully.

The tengu glanced at the witch, “Or in simple words, Kosuzu can read it easily enough, but it'd take a lot more time to actually understand the meaning of it all.”

“Basically. For whatever reason, these kinda writers like to make everything all mysterious and hard to understand. Maybe it's to satisfy their egos, or to only let the 'worthy' grasp the true nature or something.” said Kosuzu with a shrug.

You couldn't very well leave the grimoire with her for that long though... she didn't know it was kind of tied to you not dieing, and it would be kind of awkward to find an excuse to stay... particularly as she said it could probably take a few days. A few hours, or more, was manageable, but days...? That wasn't going to be really feasible at all.

“What would be your expert opinion on the book then?”

The bespectacled girl tapped her chin for a moment, “Well, like I said earlier, it's very unique. It seems really mundane, but that just makes me think there's a deeper secret hidden underneath it all... that might just be wishful thinking on my part but... a girl can have her dreams, huh?”

“So what would ya think of translatin' it and all that?”

“Certainly something I can do. Given you're at least acquainted with Marisa, I'd probably do it for... oh...” Kosuzu furrowed her brow, “say, two hundred yen?”

Aya coughed and stared at the girl, “T-two hundred!? And that's with a discount?!”

“Yup. I'd probably say more like, four hundred or somethin' normally. This isn't easy work even for me, I mean, the reading part is easy enough. The understanding part though? That takes a lot of work... you have to do a whole lot of cross-checking and stuff. Probably need to use some of my own personal collection as reference even. Demon books aren't cheap.”

Two hundred yen in the outside world would be basically pocket change... but as you had recently learned, two hundred yen was a considerable amount of money in Gensokyo. This girl charged some pretty high rates for her work... this shop didn't reflect any of that value though, where was that kind of coin going?

Kosuzu began to flip through the pages, as if counting the pages, “Of course, I'm kind of quoting that without actually getting a page count... so lemme... see...?” the girl's voice trailed off for a moment as she paused, and flipped between some pages, “Well. That's different...”

“Different? What kinda different?” asked Marisa curiously.

“The pages don't... make sense? The numbering. It's almost like when I reach the end, it just... starts over. It'd be like reaching the end of the book, and then when you close it and open it, the old 'first' page is now the last page, and the old 'last' page is now something else entirely...” the girl squinted at your grimoire, “That's a pretty unusual magic. However, it also makes reading the entire thing kind of impossible. There's no way to know how long this thing actually is.”

The witch groaned, “So basically, while we learned some, we ain't really going to get any answers. Nothin' specific anyway.”

The twintailed girl frowned, “I'd say you learned quite a bit Marisa. What's so important about it anyway? I'd offer to buy it from you for, say... oh... five hundred yen?”

“Eh? Five hundred? N-no, I can't sell it! I'm not here to sell!” you interrupt quickly.

“Really? That's a shame...” the girl sighed and ran a finger across the spine of the grimoire, “I'd really like to figure out what makes this tick, but I get the feeling you couldn't afford it. I can't do my usual charging by the page, so I'd probably just charge you a flat rate... so, maybe a better estimate for my services would be more like, three hundred yen.”

“There ain't no way Reina can afford that kinda thing Kosuzu.” stated the blonde flatly.

“Then she could always just sell it to me, and then I can translate it in my freetime, and I'd even share what I learned when I'm done!” countered Kosuzu with a grin.

The reporter interrupted before you could speak, snapping her fingers, “No is no. She can't sell it, money isn't the issue here. I don't think she could even let you translate it if she wanted, not unless you were going to give her a place to stay while you did it...”

“Why? She homeless or something? She doesn't look poor...” asked the girl curiously, peering at you.

Marisa glared at Aya, her expression reading 'You said more then you should've', “No, no it's complicated, you see...”

“Actually, it's not that complicated...” you admit with a nervous chuckle.

Kosuzu was a bit of stranger, but given her expertise in the field, and her friendship with some of your own friends... it was probably in your best interest to just let her know. Besides, the way she was stroking the spine of that grimoire and eyeing you, you swore she was pretty determined to try and buy it from you anyway. Or run with it.

“Simply put, uhm. If you keep that, and I leave... I'll probably drop dead in a few hours. Rough guess there, I'm not really keen on figuring out the exact limits.”

You could feel three sets of eyes staring at you, probably in a mixture of shock, awe, and 'what the hell are you doing!?'. Still, you couldn't take the words back, and you felt it was kind of important... the last thing you needed was the girl trying to steal the thing, or develop an unhealthy obsession with getting it.

Kosuzu's red eyes flicked from you, to the grimoire, and back several times, as if her mind was trying to comprehend what you said. After a long, uneasy pause, she let out a deep sigh, “Really, huh...?”

“She wouldn't make up something like that...” said Marisa with a groan, “And 'sides, I can vouch for it. I erm, kinda figured it out personally when I may have, almost, maybe, kinda killed her months ago. She started hacking up blood and everything, and she wasn't that far separated from it...”

The storekeeper stared at the grimoire for a moment, “Is that so? Well... in that case, translating this thing in any real fashion, just isn't going to be possible. Not unless you feel like coming by every day for the next, oh... I don't know... few weeks, at least maybe. Still, this is a business...” the twintailed girl's eyes stared at you, “Telling me that though, I have some possible theories. It's not free though, I've already given you a lot, friend of Marisa or no.

“I'm not charging for a translation here, so this is just information. Still going to cost you, oh... a yen, I'd say.”

The tengu tugged on your sleeve and leaned towards you, “You know that's quite the sum of money around here, right?”

You whispered back, “Yeah, I remember but... well, do I really have another choice?”

This time the witch approached and whispered, “Actually, I have an idea. Kosuzu is pretty good friends with Reimu, so if you could maybe offer to... I dunno, like set her up with somethin' of her's...”

Despite your whisperings, it seemed like mentioning 'Reimu' had alerted the girl immediately, as she leaned forward a bit, “Friend of Reimu? Well... if it's for a friend of her's... I'll say, fifty sen instead. Fifty percent off.”

“Oi, why is Reimu's discount so huge!? Ain't we friends Kosuzu?!” protested the witch suddenly.

“Yeah, we're friends but you still won't sell me anything I want. I've known Reimu longer as well, and she's just so much more reliable...” the girl let out a sigh that almost sounded dreamy to you, “so that's my offer anyway. Fifty sen, and I'll tell you what I think. I have to run a business here and all.”

Well fifty sen wasn't that bad... from what you remembered, you still had a little over nine yen anyway, so you could easily afford it... just was a question if you really felt you had to part with the coin or not... or you could try something else, perhaps.

- - -

Nothing ever comes easily, huh?
[ ] May as well pay up.
- [ ] Afterwards... (write-in)
[ ] Kosuzu seems kinda interested in Reimu...
- [ ] Maybe you could offer to set something up for her...
- [ ] Other?
[ ] It might be useful, but... paying? No thanks...
- [ ] Well, no point in waiting around anymore! (write-in)
[ ] Other (write-in)

> You have 9 yen and 20 sen

- - -

The 'afterwards' and such in this case, basically meaning “Where do you want to go specifically.”, otherwise I'll just... think of something, I guess.
>> No. 174295
>>174294
I think we should shell out for it. The book records the previous owners' lives, and that will include the moment of their deaths. We'll find out exactly what was hunting them, how it killed them, and any information they had uncovered about beating it. Invaluable. Of course, Yukari's insistence on not telling us things may imply that just knowing about the thing attracts its attention, in which case it would be dangerous... but we can't really bank on that.

As for setting her up with Reimu, I'm a Yuuka fan here, but the shrine maiden is pretty set on Reina, and it'd be crass to try to push her off on someone else without explaining ourselves.

Afterwards, let's drop by Keine's house and see if she'll relate some history about the book. Maybe we can line up a full-moon appointment?
>> No. 174308
[X] Mention that Reimu was reluctant to involve her in this because of her love of demon books. Warn her that you are friends not only with Reimu and Marisa but also with Yuuka Kazami, who calls you her "Little flower". Ask if she knows what Yuuka does to people who harm her flowers.
[X] May as well pay up.
-[X] Afterwards...
--[X] Maybe some danmaku practice with Marisa and maybe Aya? If there's something after you you need to be able to defend yourself.
--[X] Also, ask Marisa about useful spells or potions. Maybe some kind of emergency teleport, something to help you run faster, a flashbang/smokebomb?
--[X] Maybe the flashbang/smokebomb idea would be better as a spellcard? Something with bright, dazzling danmaku, maybe blinking and flashing, lots of smoke or fog, maybe some illusory clones of ourself. The danmaku should come from where we were we we start the spellcard, rather than moving around with us, and we probably need to include an escape route where we won't get hit by our own danmaku (unless there's some kind of friendly fire protection?). It should be easy for us to remember, but hard for the enemy to figure out. Also, the spellcard needs to not use too much energy,
>> No. 174314
[x] Pay up.
As for afterwards, I can't really think of anything good. I'll just leave that to everyone else.


>>174308
There's no reason to threaten her. She was interested in the book because it's unusual, but she's not Marisa and wouldn't try anything funny after Reina has already made it clear that she will not part with the book.
>> No. 174345
[X] Pay up.

Information is always good, and there's no need to threaten her.

I'd be all for helping set her up with Reimu, since I prefer Yuuka, but it seems a little premature at this point. Maybe we can nudge Reimu in her direction later. After a proper talk.
>> No. 174355
[X] Mention that Reimu was reluctant to involve her in this because of her love of demon books. Warn her that you are friends not only with Reimu and Marisa but also with Yuuka Kazami, who calls you her "Little flower". Ask if she knows what Yuuka does to people who harm her flowers.
[X] May as well pay up.
-[X] Afterwards...
--[X] Maybe some danmaku practice with Marisa and maybe Aya? If there's something after you you need to be able to defend yourself.
--[X] Also, ask Marisa about useful spells or potions. Maybe some kind of emergency teleport, something to help you run faster, a flashbang/smokebomb?
--[X] Maybe the flashbang/smokebomb idea would be better as a spellcard? Something with bright, dazzling danmaku, maybe blinking and flashing, lots of smoke
>> No. 174404
File 138189350148.png - (432.95KB , 608x900 , e4106949570b10db0c8b564c91797a7c.png ) [iqdb]
174404
[x] Pay up.

- - -

The price wasn't that bad really, at least a lot less steep then it could've been it seems... and Kosuzu was the expert here... you reached into your bag and fished around for your coinage, finding it and counting fetching a single golden yen coin.

“Uhm... you do have change, right?” you ask with a weak chuckle.

The young girl holds her hand out, “Certainly. Payment first, and then services rendered,” she stated plainly.

You dropped the coin onto her palm and she set it on the counter for now, “I'll get you your change in a moment. Now, for the services... let's see, how to put this...”

Kosuzu tapped her finger on the cover of your grimoire for a moment, “Alright, from what you've told me about your unique... condition, let's call it that. This is my theory based on my limited knowledge of the tome.

“The fact it is tied to you in such a way, suggests that it's working in that way because your soul is actually inside here,” the girl tapped the book for emphasis, “instead of here, where it belongs.” She patted her chest.

The witch stared and shook her head. “Is that kind of thing even possible? I mean, it's just a book. You'd usually need some kinda spell, or proper container to hold a soul, right?”

“Normally, yes. But the book itself is a proper container in this case. As for the method of transfer... can you tell me a little bit more about how you obtained it? And anything you did with it?”

“Well, it's been in the family, I think. I got it from my parents before they passed on... and well, in the outside world is had stories about a world I figured was made up, Gensokyo specifically. I used to read it some nights when I went to bed.”

The red-eyed girl nodded. “If I had to guess, reading the book was a kind of spell. It marked you as the owner, and it must've done the transfer then. You wouldn't have felt a thing at all.”

You furrowed your brow and frowned. “But I never carried the book around with me all the time back then. I was pretty sick, but I could still leave the house and do some shopping... that would've put me quite a distance away from it.”

“Really? I'll have to change my theory a bit, then. Tell me, how did you end up in Gensokyo?”

“Ah, well actually Yukari just kind of showed up and... brought me here, I guess. I don't really remember any outstanding specifics...”

Kosuzu sighed and nodded. “I see... still, a lot could've happened during the switchover. Well, either way, regardless of how or when it happened, that is what is doing right now. The grimoire is functioning as a vessel for your soul, so in all actuality, someone could stab you right now and, well, you wouldn't actually die exactly. Not in the way you're thinking.”

Marisa stared at Kosuzu. “What are you sayin'?”

“Put simply, she wouldn't die in the normal sense, because her soul isn't actually in the body. There's nothing to free. I mean, she'd lack a body and she'd somehow need a new one, and I doubt that's in anyone's power anymore. Still, she wouldn't be dead in the normal sense. She wouldn't be able to pass on until her soul was released from the book somehow.

“It's not something I suggest you test. In closing, I don't think the book itself is dangerous. It's a demon book based upon information recording and storage. Don't lose it, because you'll die if you do. And I apologize for asking to buyit from you; I can't very well buy someone's life like that. As a word of advice, I would be wary of even letting someone hold that.'

As the girl hands the book back to you, you raise an eyebrow at her curiously. “Why is that?”

“Lemme answer that one,” cut in Marisa, smacking her fist into her palm, “Put simply, because the grimoire is functioning as vessel for your soul, whenever you hand it over you are in effect, handing over your soul as well. It might be locked away inside and protected, but a powerful magic user could probably overcome those defenses and be capable of stealin' your soul.

“If it doesn't outright kill ya, they can use that to basically control you. It's some really seriously dangerous and powerful magic, but there's no tellin'. You should only let someone you trust hold it from now on, just ta be safe.”

The pig-tailed girl nodded, “Basically. Be really careful with it. Anyway, lemme get you some change, lemme see...” the girl took a few moments to search underneath the counter before producing a small number of coins, “There ya go, fifty sens.”

This was a lot of information to take in at once... still, at least you knew it all now. Guess you should be rather careful of just handing it over to strangers... especially if something is looking for you. That could be pretty bad if you just handed it over to them. You take the offered coinage and quickly do a count, she was spot on about the change but...

“Hey, what's this coin? It doesn't look like a rin.” you ask, holding up a bronze coin.

“Oh, that? I'm not sure actually. I must've grabbed it on accident. You can keep it though, I think it's just some kind of collectable coin. I found it laying on the street once when I was cleaning. It looked like a rin coin at first, but well, it's not... as you can see, it's made of bronze. It's also got an engraving on it, it's a pretty coin but...” the girl grinned, “I don't really need it. Consider it a gift!

“I know you got some pretty weird news, but I want to say thank you for coming by. I would be delighted to try and tackle that book of yours proper, but I just can't right now. It's going to take a lot of time, and the situation around it means I probably have to stay with you during the entire thing. I just can't really close up shop for that long.”

You nod in understanding and offer Kosuzu a smile, “No, no that's fine I understand. If you ever find some time though, you are more then welcome to come by and visit me. I live a bit far from the village but...”

“I won't make any promises, but sure. If you ever need some books, or anything printed, come on by alright? I'll give you a nice discount since you're a friend of Reimu's.”

“Yeah, apparently that means more then bein' my friend...” muttered the witch darkly.

Kosuzu waved at the three of you as you departed her humble shop. You pocketed the coinage and looked at the bronze coin under the light of the sun – it was rather unremarkable, aside from being made entirely of bronze, and you could make out the engraving of a flower upon it. It was a pretty interesting coin to be sure, but you had no idea what the purpose of it was. Maybe it just was some old collectable coin? Either way, you'd keep it.

“Well, that was a pretty big dump of info I'd say.” offered Aya casually, “Can't say I was expecting that at all.”

The witch tipped her hat and nodded, “Yeah no kiddin'. Never expected ta see a book like that before... it's kinda scary really. You usually need a really powerful and special magical item to do that. Whoever made that book really knew what they were doin'.”

You sighed and nodded, “It's a lot to take in... pretty scary really. Still, I guess I know more then I did a day ago... so that's something.”

“Yeah that's one way of lookin' at it I guess. Still, what are ya gonna do now Reina? We may have found out a bit more but... in all honesty, we're still running blind here.”

“I don't think any of us were expecting any answers to fall in our lap... the best we can do is just be prepared for something to happen. I know I wouldn't mind keeping Reina company on a daily basis.” offered Aya with a grin, trying to lighten the mood.

“Ah! Actually, I gotta get goin'. I just remembered I got a date with Alice... I think I'm gonna be late at this rate... I must've forgotten in all the rush and stuff of this...” declared the witch suddenly fumbling to mount her broom, “I'm really sorry! You take good care of 'er while I'm gone Aya, alright?! Anythin' happens to her, and I'll clip your wings!”

The tengu laughed and waved as the black-white witch quickly took off, “Alice is gonna be mad at her, that's for sure. I don't think she's ever been on time for their dates.”

“They're dating?” you asked in surprise.

“For the last few months at least. It's been kind of on and off between the two of them I guess. They kind of date for a few months, something happens – usually Marisa trying to hit on some other girl – and they break up for a bit... then they just get together again.” said the tengu with a shrug, “Marisa is pretty flirty like that. I don't think I can see her every getting married with just one person, she likes to believe that if she loves multiple people, she should be able to have it all.

“It's a pretty youkai-like way to look at things, I guess. For a while actually, she was really wanting to bed you, Reina,” declared Aya with a toothy grin.

You blushed and gulped. “Ahahaha... r-really? That's pretty... erm, I guess that's a... compliment?”

“That's one way to look at it. Still, I think she's kind of given up on you. Just be careful around her, she doesn't mean you any harm of course, but still... Well, I think we've got a lot of daylight left. Up to doing anything?”

- - -

Hopefully these peaceful days go on forever, huh?
[ ] Go play at Akemi's place? (Pick a game and the rules. Betting, private room, and all that)
[ ] Shopping with Aya!
[ ] Maybe you'll go check in at...
- [ ] Reimu's?
- [ ] The mansion?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?
[ ] Other?

> You have 8 yen and 70 sen
> Obtained Bronze Coin
>> No. 174418
[x] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?
>> No. 174422
[X] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?

Sometimes you gotta let your friends pick something, too.

>engraving of a flower
Let's show that to Yuuka later. It not as if I think she has anything to do with it, but just because.
Maybe she can identify the flower.
>> No. 174432
Wow it's a good thing we left the Marisa route, we'd just be a booty call.

[ ] Maybe you'll go check in at...
- [ ] The mansion?

Maybe Patchouli will know how to set things up so the book creates a new body upon our death. That way we'll be a proper lich.

Except for the whole "no leaving your phylactery" nonsense. Gotta fix that too.
>> No. 174433
[ ] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?

I'm certain that Aya will pick something completely socially acceptable and not at all take you back to her place so she can show you her superior 'reach and flexibility'.
>> No. 174461
[ayayayaya] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?
>> No. 174467
[X] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?

Sure, why not?
>> No. 174469
File 138203326156.png - (259.18KB , 387x560 , madoka-02-dat-gem_cropped.png ) [iqdb]
174469
>>174404
>Put simply, she wouldn't die in the normal sense, because her soul isn't actually in the body. There's nothing to free. I mean, she'd lack a body and she'd somehow need a new one, and I doubt that's in anyone's power anymore.

Huh. (And the original RiG predates PMMM, too. Was it like this then, or was the book just life-support?)

[x] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?
>> No. 174482
[X] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?

>it was rather unremarkable, aside from being made entirely of bronze, and you could make out the engraving of a flower upon it.
>Obtained Bronze Coin

My my my, I didn't figure Kosuzu went to the Lotus Pavilion! Or that someone would be foolish enough to drop their ticket to such elegant delights.
>> No. 174496
[X] Ask Aya if she knows anything about the bronze coin
[X] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?
>> No. 174531
File 138223289874.png - (159.33KB , 600x600 , b20b8f1ee5b807dfecffd979e155436f.png ) [iqdb]
174531
[X] Hey, why not let Aya pick something to do for a change?

- - -

You were always kind of taking the lead in these days, weren't you? It had been awhile since you had actually gone somewhere without asking to go there...

“Actually, how about you decide where we should go? It's not really fair if I'm always making every choice when I go out with friends.”

“Leaving it in my capable hands, eh?” asked Aya with a toothy grin, “Well, I will admit to not being prepared for this but... I think I have a few ideas. Remilia has been really your only client, right? For work and all that.”

That actually sounded about right. You had done a job for Yuyuko once... and a few jobs from the village, but they had kind of stopped really quick. Remilia had really been your only customer...

“Yeah, pretty much. I've had maybe a half dozen jobs from others besides her. Why?”

The tengu nodded her head. “Oh, you'll see! Come on, I've got a place to show you... it's not that far, so we'll walk.”

As you kept pace with the tengu, it occurred to you that you never saw her walk much. She was either always flying, or almost floating off the ground a little bit. It probably explained why she wore those really weird shoes, but you also had to wonder how she even walked in those comfortably at all...

They reminded you of high heels, but seemed even more impractical. Actually, they were kind of like geta, but just a lot taller. Did she wear those to appear taller or something?

Before long Aya had led you towards a rather small, and slightly rundown looking building. It fit in with the rest of the village, so it was a traditional japanese style, but it still looked kind of... old. Was this the place? What was it? It didn't seem to have any clear indication...

“It doesn't look like much, huh? Still, I think this is someone you'll want to meet. I should've thought of this months ago really... advertising in the paper isn't always the best idea, even if my interviews kind of did that.”

“Just what kind of place is this? It looks rather old and not in the best of shape...” you mention carefully.

The crow grins and gestures inside, “Come on, I'll show ya.”

The inside of the building didn't look that bad actually, you could make out a staircase in the back, where you guessed the living quarters was. The actual first floor though wasn't too big, and you could spy a door in the back which you had to guess led to the kitchen or some such.

However the actual area you were in contained little beyond a counter, and desks. All in all a pretty non-descript building... it didn't look like a shop, you couldn't see any merchandise on display. The counter was pretty messy though, with papers and cups.

You noticed however that seated at the counter, a book in one hand was a fairy. She cast a surprised glance at the two of you as you entered, sticking a bookmark to hold her spot, before setting the book aside. Her eyes flicked to Aya immediately.

“Shameimaru. It's been a long time... what brings you here?”

Aya stood to your side and gestured. “I'm here to introduce you to Reina Roots! We were in the area, and it occurred to me I never really introduced you. She's a pretty talented worker so - “

The fairy held up a hand to silence Aya, leaning forward to peer at you. “I've heard of her. She has done work for Remilia Scarlet in the Scarlet Devil Mansion, yes? From what I hear, her work is quite good. There is certainly some work for her, I think...”

“Erm, uh... e-excuse me but ah... who are you and... what? I'm kind of at a loss here.” you admit sheepishly, chuckling weakly.

“I see you did not even explain anything before bringing her here... I should have expected this.” the fairy sighed, “I am Limstella. My job in the village is to collect various job requests and then try to assign them to a potential client. I will admit my success in this field is a bit...” she looked around her 'office', “Limited. There is demand, but I have a severe lack of clients to assign work too. Most of the shops in this area don't really need my help, so it's left me at a bit of a loss of what to do...”

“So you're kind of like a... guild or something?”

Limstella raises an eyebrow. “I guess in a fashion. I have far fewer resources available then anything quite that grand though. I've been wanting to expand my operations but it's simply not possible without some actual clients and income.” the fairy sighed and shook her head, “I would be grateful if you wish to help me with this, but I will understand if you don't want too.”

This place did look pretty rundown... it was pretty clear her business wasn't doing all that good. Still, Aya had to introduce you to her for a reason, right?

“Well... I could be interested, I think. I'm not too sure what you really need from me though.”

The silver-haired fairy nodded. “I will provide some paperwork I would like you to fill out. It will give me an understanding of the exact skillset you have. In return, I will find and provide you suitable work. You complete jobs, and I will handle payment... I will confess, the pay is lower then you would have if you worked directly with potential customers, as I need to take a cut of it as well to finance my own business.

“However I will assure you the pay will still be quite agreeable. If you so desire, you can also opt to have me offer you workers... there are some unemployed workers around, usually youkai or fairies, and if you wish, I can have them come to work for you either part-time or permanently if you so desire. For now, I only would ask you to fill this out.”

She reaches under the counter and searches through a stack of papers, before selecting one and placing it on the counter, while also placing a pen next to it.

You glance towards the tengu who grins, she leans forward and whispers. “Yeah I know, it's kinda different but... I thought you might want to expand your horizons a bit beyond Remilia. It's going to be up to you, of course. Once we're done here, I've got a place I want to take you to, if you don't mind.”

- - -

A pretty unusual offer...
[ ] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
> The paper wants some skills you have... well furniture is an obvious one! (Pick one)
- [ ] Non-precious metal restoration.
- [ ] Precious metal restoration.
- [ ] Paintings/writings.
- [ ] Clothing.
> Do you want to have workers?
- [ ] Hmmm... sure!
- [ ] You'll pass on that one...
[ ] It doesn't sound all that appealing...
- [ ] You actually have somewhere you want to go now. (Write-in)
[ ] Other?

- - -

Slightly reusing some old concepts here.
>> No. 174532
>>174531

[ ] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
> The paper wants some skills you have... well furniture is an obvious one! (Pick one)
- [ ] Non-precious metal restoration.

Having grown up essentially poor, I figure Reina wouldn't have had any training or experience in working with jewelry and the like.

> Do you want to have workers?
- [ ] Hmmm...

I'm actually not too sure. On one hand, Remilia gives us HUGE jobs in a short timeframe, and even having unskilled labor to move things around and do the large work while we do the fine would reduce time and make things a lot more manageable. Plus we could have our very own apprentice! On the down side, we'd have to pay them. We get paid fairly well for our work, but we don't get enough of it to be great pay.

A pretty useful place to take us Aya, but not very convincing of any sort of romantic interest.
>> No. 174533
[X] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
- [X] Non-precious metal restoration.
> Do you want to have workers?
- [X] Only for the big jobs.

>>174532
You make good points, but Reina's work seems to lend itself more to hiring for the few big jobs that she can't handle alone. I wanted to make this explicit in the vote instead of agreeing to workers in general.
>> No. 174541
[x] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
- [x] Non-precious metal restoration.
> Do you want to have workers?
- [X] Only for the big jobs.

I agree with this reasoning. Reina strikes me as a restorer of woodwork and metal furnishings, not a jeweler or clothier. Asf or employees, it might be handy to have the number of a few part-time workers for when the big jobs come in.
>> No. 174547
[x] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
- [x] Non-precious metal restoration.
> Do you want to have workers?
- [X] Only for the big jobs.

Eh, sounds good.
>> No. 174603
[X] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
- [Y] Non-precious metal restoration.

[Z] Only for the big jobs.

Sounds good to me, even if I like the idea of fairies everywhere.
>> No. 174641
File 138276771727.jpg - (261.80KB , 850x1200 , sample-91bfd34c1af5fce3802918fc568f58c4.jpg ) [iqdb]
174641
[X] It can't hurt to sign up, right?
- [X] Non-precious metal restoration.
> Do you want to have workers?
- [X] Only for the big jobs.

- - -

It does not take you long to fill out the paperwork, making sure to dot all the i's and cross all the t's, as the saying goes. You take a moment to double check everything before offering the paper back to Limstella, she takes a moment to look it over before carefully filing it away.

“Thank you. I will see if I can find some work for you in the following days. Please, have a pleasant day.” stated the fairy coolly, shuffling through the pile of papers on her counter.

Well, she was pretty different from any other fairy you had met. Very professional and quiet... and strangely dedicated to her work. From what you had heard, this was pretty much the exact opposite of how a fairy usually acts.

“Well! Let's hope this'll work out great for the both of you. Come on Reina, no use standing around – work doesn't really just walk in through the door here.”

“Actually, it does sometimes. I will send any potential work offers to your house via a courier.” said Limstella as the tengu practically dragged you out.

“I have to say, I wasn't really expecting this kind of place in the village.”

The tengu nodded her head as she looked about, as if trying to find her bearings, “There's a lot more to the 'village' then you'd think. I've told they should probably give it a proper name or something. Outsiders come here and hear 'village' and think like... I guess a small collection of houses or something.

“At first, it was like that. But now? It's kind of like a small town almost. Well. Back in the day anyway, I'm sure by the outsider standards its still just a big village or something.”

You can't say you were really sure on that one... the Human 'Village' was pretty large though from what you had seen. Still, kind of odd how it didn't have a proper name.

“But anyway! Come on, I'm gonna take you out somewhere nice to eat. I don't know about you, but it's been quite a few hours now and I'm getting a little hungry. Also, it's my treat – you're not payin' a single rin!” declared Aya, quickly leading you off before you could really protest her decision either way.

The pushy tengu quickly led you threw the streets of the village, passing many establishments, houses, and restaurants along the way. Eventually she brought you in front of a somewhat large building, looking to be at least two stories. As was usual, it was a very traditional japanese-looking building – only it actually had a sliding door for an entrance.

Once inside you were quickly greeted by an older looking woman clad in a kimono (you were noticing a trend in the garb around here...). She looked at you with a warm smile before looking to the black-haired youkai.

“I did not expect to see you here today, Shameimaru. Should I get you a table for two?”

The crow nodded her head, patting you on the back, “Yup! So how ya been anyway? I saw your daughter not too long ago...”

The woman nodded, gesturing for you to follow as she started to walk off, “She told me all about it. As I recall, you were teaching her,” she inclined her head at you, “how to play mahjong?”

“Yup! She's still got a lot to learn but well, I guess we'll see how she'll do.” Aya flashed you a grin, “If you couldn't figure it out, this is Akemi's mother: Hanako.”

Hanako gave you a smile as she gestured at a table, “It is nice to meet you in person Reina. Akemi told you a bit about you. I believe I've heard you mentioned in gossip around the village... we don't get too many outsiders in Gensokyo – particularly those who actually seem to settle in and like it. Too many of them spend months freaking out or causing trouble.”

“I recall one time, this outsider showed up and figured that since there was so many women around, that we should all be in his harem or something. Lemme just say he didn't last long. I think some wild youkai ended up eating him.” remarked Aya casually.

“It was actually several wild youkai, from what I heard. But I imagine you'll be having your usual? As for her...?”

Before you could even ask what was served the tengu cut in, “The same as me. I'm buyin' for her today, and I'm sure she'll like it. As for drinks... I'll have some sake, and... do you mind some tea? Or would you like water?”

“Ah, water will be just fine, thank you.”

Hanako nodded, “Of course. I'll be right back with your order then. Enjoy your stay.”

~

The meal turned out to be a serving of yakinuki. It was actually pretty well-made and tasty! Though you did briefly wonder where exactly the meat had come from, but decided you probably didn't really want to know the answer to that one. Aya was rather secretive about the cost, and Hanako seemed to not even mention the cost, so you couldn't even think of ways to repay her for the meal!

But that was probably the point of hiding it. With the meal eaten, and the hidden bill paid, Aya once more took charge, exchanging farewells with Hanako before leading you out of the establishment. On the way out, you did notice a staircase leading upwards, and when you came out side, the tengu seemed to have notice that.

“There's actually a gambling parlor up there too. Like Akemi, she runs one... it's a bit more classy though, you could say. She mostly just serves up food though. Not too many people are willing to throw that much coin around everyday after all.” answered the tengu

“I didn't think there'd really be any gambling around here, to be honest. And ah, thank you very much for the meal, Aya.”

Aya flashed you a grin, “Don't mention it! And yeah, I guess it is kind of surprising to outsiders. People still like to gamble though, it's a nice way to pass the days sometimes. Now then!” suddenly the tengu grabbed you and hefted you into her arms, “Hold on and don't let go now. I'd hate to have to catch you, it's tricky to grab a moving target sometimes.”

Before you could voice a protest or objection, you felt the tengu start to float up and quickly did as instructed, holding onto the youkai's waist as she then took off into the sky. It was pretty late now, and the wind chill was quite noticeable, but Aya was still surprisingly warm and wasn't flying too fast.

You could fly yourself, but there was always something nice about being carried regardless. Maybe because you could just appreciate the view better? Flying was pretty much a human dream after all, and no one in the outside world could say they have flown around without the assistance of an airplane or something.

The village quickly disappeared beneath you, and you found yourself heading in a direction you weren't too sure about at all. Your face must've had a puzzled expression, because the tengu chuckled.

“I can't take you to the mountain, but I can at least show it off from a distance. I don't think you've ever seen it, right? It's pretty far off, but well, I'm pretty fast. I can get you close enough to get a look, and then get you home before it gets too cold out.”

“I have no idea how you manage to fly around so fast and not get cold to be honest...” you admit with a chuckle.

“There's a trick to it, a little bit of magic. I'll have to teach you one day maybe. I'm sure Reimu could do it too, but I guess just learning to fly in the first place is better then learning the little things like protecting you from the wind chill.” the black-haired crow chuckled again, “If you were wondering, that is how I can fly around with this skirt and not have my legs covered in goosebumps.”

You had to admit, that thought had crept into your head a few times. Reimu and Yuuka wore pretty full-body covering outfits, so it never occurred to you that there might be some magic to it. But Aya's rather short skirt did leave her legs mostly bare, and you wondered if it got cold when she flew around.

After some flying, the tengu quickly descended and set you down upon the grass, and then she pointed off in the distance, “I'd bring you closer, but I think if I get too much closer, the White Wolves might start taking offense. They're probably already watching you, to be honest.”

To your surprise, you were actually fairly close to a very impressive, and large mountain. Now that you thought about it, you could always see it off in the distance but you had never really seen it this close to your recollection.

A vast forest seemed to cover up most of the mountain, probably extending at least half way up, if not two-thirds. You could also just barely make out what seemed to be smoke rising from the mountaintop. Was it a volcano or something?

“It's not a volcano,” stated Aya as if she could read your mind, “that's just smoke stacks, more or less, that helps filter out the smoke from the city. The kappa are pretty industrious after all. You'll notice you don't see any buildings, really right? The city is actually inside the mountain, so there's really no way to show you without actually getting permission. I'd really like to do that sometime, but the powers-that-be can be really stingy about it.

“Sad to say, you'll probably need to do something impressive for them to even consider letting an outsider in. If you were a Gensokyo native, it'd be a bit easier, but as an outsider, they kind of distrust you out of habit, I think.”

That was a bit of a shame. You were really curious as to how that city had to look to have actual smokestacks coming out of it! Maybe one day... the view was rather impressive though, even from down here.

“What does it look like higher up?” you asked curiously.

The tengu rubbed her chin, “I'd show you but...” she pointed at the forest, moved her hand a bit and pointed elsewhere, and pointed once more, “you have three White Wolves already keeping an eye on you at least. I think if I took you up, they might decided to throw us out. They don't seem to mind people looking from the ground, but when you get higher up, they really get mad.

“Probably because if you're up high enough, you could reach the city faster. From the ground, you'd have to get through the forest, which is no walk in the park that's for sure. I'll see about getting some paperwork done one day, and I'll give you a proper tour. There's a shrine up at the top, and I think the shrine maiden is an outsider like you.”

“Really? I think it'd be pretty nice to meet her sometime then. I can't even see anyone watching us at all...”

Aya chuckled and patted you on the back, “I've got good eyes. Also I kind of know their usual spots. Anyway, they're looking kind of edgy. I'm going to take you home, alright? I'm going to be spending the night as usual, per the agreement to keep an eye on you. I'll be gone when you wake up though but...” the tengu bit her lip, “it'll only be for a little while.”

You offered her a reassuring smile, “I'll be fine, don't worry. Thanks a lot for today Aya. I'm going to need to repay you somehow.”

“Oh, I can think of a few ways...” the tengu grinned broadly, picking you up once more, “but that's for another day! Off we go, hold on tight.”

~

It was a bit unusual now to have the house be empty of anyone. It had only been a few days since... stuff had started to happen, but it was pretty nice waking up and having a friend there in the morning. The house felt a lot emptier now. It also occurred to you that Yukari had been suspiciously absent for a while now... she usually had a tendency to pop up when something like this happened.

But maybe she was just busy, or maybe it just wasn't that important...? Well, no use dwelling on it, you could never figure out went through that youkai's head anyway. Now the question was, what were you going to do for the day? You could do anything of course, but you didn't have any outstanding work, and you somewhat doubted you would get anything from Limstella given you had seen her less then a day ago.

“How did I ever pass slow days like this back in the outside world anyway...” you said to yourself with an amused chuckle.

As you finished up making and eating breakfast, once more trying to decide what you should do with your day, you are interrupted by a gentle knocking on the door. When you go to answer it, you are surprised to see the silver-haired maid standing outside, giving you a small curtsey.

“Good morning Reina. I hope I am not interrupting anything?”

You shake your head and gesture inside, “No, not at all, please come in. I'm a bit surprised to see you is all. I don't think I have ever seen you outside the mansion.”

“I take a route to the village that brings me close to your house, but today I was instructed to specifically come see you. Mistress Remilia wanted me to attend to the matter of payment for this month, and I was to see if anyone was with you today.” the maid took a quick glance around the room, “I take it you are alone today, Reina?”

“Yeah. Aya spent the night, but she's usually gone before I wake up. She always says she has to be up early to get home in time to publish the Bunbunmaru and all. I knew Remilia said she was going to have you come by, I guess I just didn't think it would be so soon.”

Sakuya tilted her head slightly, “If my presence is a bother, I can leave if you require it. Mistress Remilia would not wish to impose upon your personal life after all. Here is your payment for the month, including some extra.”

The maid procured a small bag from seemingly nowhere, handing it over to you. You took a quick peek inside to note the coinage, before placing it away inside your own bag.

“Thank you, and ah, no it's not really a problem at all. I was actually kind of really unsure of what to do today, I've been kind of used to either having work or friends around.”

“Of course Reina. Well, for the day I am at your disposal. While I am hesitant to leave the mansion in the care of the fairy maids for the day, Mistress Remilia was quite insistent I take the entire day off, and I am not to return until tomorrow morning.”

Remilia did mention she had really wanted to give Sakuya a day off, even if she never seemed to complain. Well, seems she had sent her to you as she had suggested... you had to think this was largely due to your situation though. It was kind of odd to consider your friends were basically serving as bodyguards, but that was just how it was.

- - -

Well this is new, Sakuya huh?
[ ] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [ ] Once that is done you're just going to lazy around the house and chat with Sakuya though. (Write-in questions)
- [ ] Sakuya is supposed to be good with cards right, why not a game? (Write-in specifics)
- [ ] Maybe you should pay Reimu a visit with Sakuya.
- [ ] Perhaps you'll go find Yuuka...
- [ ] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Don't make the bracelet yet. (Same sub-options as above)
[ ] Other (Write-in)

> Gained 6 yen
> You have 12 yen and 70 sen

- - -

Sorry for how late this is. I've really gotten into this whole “Okay it's after college, time to play games.” thing again.

I have also been really thinking on another CYOA idea I really want to write, but I still have details to work out... and I'm not sure its in good taste to have two CYOAs running at once, particularly as I think this other idea is pretty /th/ material. I could maybe just make it in the village though.

It is a Teahouse idea though. Kind of like RiG in being slice-of-life, but without the 'supernatural' element of the grimoire, so it's mostly just going to be character and business-driven. Thoughts? If any.

Also as for that Bronze Coin... That is indeed a reference to the Lotus Pavilion. I actually have some things in mind for it so we'll see. Maybe.
>> No. 174647
[x] Don't make the bracelet yet
- [x] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?

Sakuya has clearly been released into our "care" for the day. It's up to us to make sure she has a good break! It'd be kind of awkward to have a guest, and then just leave them while we go work.

Besides, she must know where all the good places in town to buy fancy things are. We could start putting details on our work!
>> No. 174649
[X] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [X] Maybe you should pay Reimu a visit with Sakuya.

Reimu time is best time.
>> No. 174650
>>174641
>Bronze coin
>Lotus Pavillion
>Reina

Oh God. Kriss. Please. You must do this.
>> No. 174651
[X] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [X] Maybe you should pay Reimu a visit with Sakuya.
>> No. 174652
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [x] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?
>> No. 174653
>>174641

>More Lotus Pavillion

Kriss...Kriss pls...I haven't even been reading this story, but I'm going to start now that I saw that while scrolling down.

[X] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [X] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?
>> No. 174654
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [x] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?


>Lotus Pavilion Coin
>"Thanks a lot for today Aya. I'm going to need to repay you somehow.”
>“Oh, I can think of a few ways...” the tengu grinned broadly

...Oh God. Oh God yes. Please, Kriss?

Please?
>> No. 174658
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
-[x] Maybe you should pay Reimu a visit with Sakuya.

Hmmm.
>> No. 174666
[X] Don't make the bracelet yet
- [X] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?
-- [X] And maybe swing by the casino when you're done, since she enjoys cards.

It seems rude to just get to work when there's guest around, don't you know.
>> No. 174670
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
-[x] Maybe you should pay Reimu a visit with Sakuya.

>The pushy tengu quickly led you threw the streets of the village,
>The pushy tengu quickly led you threw
>threw
Kriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiisssssss!

Also, >out side
and >Really right?

Sometimes I want to strangle you, but I can't. I could list plenty of small itsy-bitsy problems that you have, but it reads fine when I turn my brain off. Sorry for nickpicking, but there's always something a bit strange whenever you take the time to reread it.
>> No. 174697
>>174653
It's not the first time Reina's guest starred in something /at/. There was her scene in winemaker.
>> No. 174709
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [x] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?

This way, we finish up the work we owe Reimu, and then we can get a whole new perspective on the human village from Sakuya. As Chief Maid she may have very valuable knowledge about the village...and it'll be a great chance to interact with her and learn more about her.
>> No. 174717
File 138306240326.png - (48.24KB , 697x950 , f8a3d0adecbe83f57f903a3ab6590b7f.png ) [iqdb]
174717
[x] Before you got started on the day, you did have that bracelet to make for Reimu...
- [x] The village is becoming kind of a thing. May as well have Sakuya show you around?

- - -

“Do you mind if I finish up a little bit of ah... work, Sakuya?” you ask hesitatingly, after all Sakuya was kind of here to spend a day off.

The silver-haired maid shook her head, “Not at all Reina. It is not like you only decided to do the work because I was here, right?” she asked with a coy smile.

Was... was that a joke? It shouldn't take too long to make that bracelet for Reimu anyway. You already had the beads, so you just needed to find something suitable to string it on... simple string was obvious, but that could wear away pretty quickly. Maybe you had something tougher laying around the workshop...

You noticed that as you worked, Sakuya watched curiously from the entryway. It was tough to say if she was watching you work, or if she was just thinking of ways to clean up your workshop. It was kind of messy after all, but it was an organized mess...

It didn't take you long to find something you were happy with, and then it was a simple matter of stringing the beads on in an acceptable order. With that out of the way, you put the bracelet away into your bag and went to attend to your guest – who happened to still be standing there in the entryway.

“I'm sorry if you didn't like me watching, but I was curious as to how you worked. Although, I will admit, a bead bracelet seems like an unusual job... is that something that really requires your expertise?”

“Ah, no this wasn't really a job, exactly. It's just a gift I wanted to make, and well, I just wanted to get it out of the way today was all. I haven't actually had some work in a while, but ah, that's just how it goes.”

The maid nodded her head and stepped out of the way, “I see. You are a very kind person Reina. Even in something as simple as a bead bracelet, I can see you put great care into the entire process. I'm a bit amazed you can find anything in that workshop though...”

You chuckled and rubbed the back of your head, “It is a bit of a mess, but I guess its an organized mess. I really should clean it all up one day, but it'll just take a lot of time and then I'll probably still look for everything in its old place anyway.”

“A common train of thought. Did you intend to go deliver that gift now?”

“Actually, I was kind of hoping you could show me around the village? I've been going there for a few days now with others, but well, I always imagine there's still more to it then what they've already shown me.”

Sakuya inclined her head slightly, “I certainly could do that, although I do not know how much I could actually show you. Perhaps if you told me where you have already been?”

After you had given the maid a brief summary of the places you had seen with Reimu, Yuuka, and Aya, she nodded and gestured towards the entrance of your house.

“Very well then, I can think of a few places to show you. I will not promise they will be terribly exciting, however.”

~

Sakuya was pretty spot on when she did say it'd be nothing terribly exciting. As perhaps expected of the head maid of the mansion, much of her knowledge of the village was in where to shop for things she needed to obtain for the mansion.

But you did now know where to go to find some rather high-quality foodstuffs and materials... or well, anything rather high-quality in fact. The prices of everything in those stores promised to really require you to decide if you needed it though – it also highlighted just the kind of wealth Remilia had. You had to briefly wonder how those places stayed in business at all, but Sakuya had mentioned they had more customers then just Remilia.

You weren't sure who, of course, and Sakuya admitted to not really knowing herself. Still, while it was not terribly exciting, the shopkeepers were all friendly enough and mentioned they'd extended the mansion's discount to you as well, given your close standing with Remilia.

You also couldn't help but notice the way villagers treated Sakuya. Where as everyone was kind of afraid of you when Yuuka was around, or the suspicious looks Aya got... many people seemed indifferent to the maid. Or just gave her a friendly wave and greeting, but the maid herself usually only returned these greetings in the most simple way.

It gave you the impression the head maid did not have the best social skills. Perhaps it was true, given it seemed she only did venture out of the mansion for business. Even during the little tour, you had caught her slipping into business a few times, before reminding herself that she had already done the errands – and that it was her day off, and she was supposed to be relaxing.

Remilia had given some suggestions to imply Sakuya was a different person when she wasn't working, but so far you weren't really seeing it... perhaps you just weren't getting her to actually unwind? Remilia was depending on you to do that! … Maybe. Still, you should make an effort.

“Hey Sakuya, what do you like to do for fun? Like, on your time off?” you asked suddenly as the two of you walked the streets.

The silver-haired woman considered the question for a moment, “I cannot say I do anything particularly special. As for particulars, I am quite fond of cards and Mistress Remilia has still yet to defeat me in a game.” the maid gave you a coy smile, “I do hear you are quite the cardplayer yourself, Reina. Although your shogi and mahjong leave much to be desired.”

“Ahaha, w-where did you hear that from?”

“Mistress Remilia told me. You were a quick learner she will admit, but I will admit, I am not particularly good at learning games. I much more prefer playing for real, as it were. Besides that, I enjoy drinking tea and reading.”

- - -

Sakuya didn't really do a lot, did she?
[ ] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
- [ ] Akemi's isn't too far away. Maybe you should get a private room? Or not...
- [ ] Akemi's mother runs a gambling place right? Maybe you can go there.
- [ ] You'll play her back at home.
- [ ] Other?
[ ] You have some books back home, maybe Sakuya would like them?
[ ] Maybe you'll go and see Reimu, and the three of you can all do something?
[ ] If it's a day off, maybe you could actually have Sakuya go to Patchouli's library and read there?
[ ] Other?

On the topic of Pavilion, I'm only going to promise I have thought of some things involving it. What they are? Well, you'll have to see.

Also, this is the 30th update! It feels like a milestone.
>> No. 174718
[X] Maybe you'll go and see Reimu, and the three of you can all do something?

Two's company, but three's a crowd! Also we need to deliver that bracelet.
>> No. 174719
[x] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
- [x] Akemi's mother runs a gambling place right? Maybe you can go there.

Private room is tempting, but it seems like a bit much for now.
>> No. 174720
[X] Maybe you'll go and see Reimu, and the three of you can all do something?

Most card games aren't that interesting 1 on 1. Adding at least one other player really improves them.
Besides, we were going to give her the bracelet anyway.
>> No. 174721
[x] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
-[x] Most card games are better with more than two players. Go to the shrine and see if Reimu and/or Suika want to play.
>> No. 174725
[x] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
- [x] You'll play her back at home.
- [x] Get Reimu (and maybe some others) in on it

We'll have a big old card game party to celebrate Sakuya's time off.
>> No. 174734
>>174717
[x] You have some books back home, maybe Sakuya would like them?

Worst case is we get a card game out of it. I would like to see Aya's reaction to the bronze coin, given she has been inside the Pavilion ~
>> No. 174738
>>174734
While the Pavilion is in RiG, I'm not really implying the events that happened in the story have actually happened here.

Different canon, but same place. Which is to say, just because they were in Pavilion, doesn't necessarily mean they actually work/worked there in RiG.

Just to throw that out there. Also, darnit anon, I'm going to have to franken up some really strange vote later today it seems...
>> No. 174744
[X] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
- [X] Akemi's mother runs a gambling place right? Maybe you can go there.

Maybe we'll find someone else there too.
>> No. 174757
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174757
[x] You're pretty sure that's a challenge to card games though.
- [x] One on one isn't as fun, so go visit Reimu's and see if she'll play.

Invoking the powers of Frankenstein-ing votes together.

- - -

Remilia had hinted at it, and even Sakuya seemed to be in on it... seems the few card games you had hosted had really traveled around. It would be a bit cowardly at this point to turn down the offer, right? Still, you didn't really play one on one games since you came here... and you didn't feel like starting today.

“I can see both you and Remilia really wanted me to play you in cards, but I'm not quite so used to play one on one, you know?” you offer with a nervous chuckle, “If you don't mind, perhaps we can go to the shrine, and see if Reimu likes to play?”

The maid raised an eyebrow curiously but nodded her head, “Certainly. While Mistress Remilia had mentioned your prowess in cards, I cannot say she specifically asked me to do it...” she smirked as she gestured in the direction of the shrine, “But I will admit I have been looking forward to it. There are few who can provide a worthy game. I am more comfortable one on one myself, but if you wish for more players, I will still be glad to play.”

You somehow got the idea that Sakuya was not only pleased with you accepting her sorta-kinda hinted challenge, but that she was also probably really good at it... guess there was only going to be one way to find that out for sure though.

~

“I never thought I'd see you with a day off Sakuya.” commented Reimu, her tone implying a mix of teasing and seriousness.

“I have them from time to time, not everyone has such a free schedule like you.” countered Sakuya with a smug smile.

You had barely been at the shrine for a few moments before the two already looked to be at one another's throats... Reimu was surprised to see you, and more surprised to see Sakuya. Still, she didn't offer any protest to having the two of you over on the maid's day off. When you had brought up that the maid was looking to play cards, the shrine maiden seemed a bit reluctant, but had given in after some gentle prodding from Sakuya.

That did bring the pool of players up to three... not quite as many as your first game, but there wasn't anyone else in the immediate area to call upon. Reimu's shrine was pretty isolated from everywhere else after all.

“Do you even have a deck of cards Reimu? I don't really have one on me, and I don't think Sakuya has - “

“Reimu doesn't, but I've got one we can all use.” cut in a new voice suddenly.

The three of you all stopped in your tracks and whirled around to see a rather small girl standing behind the three of you. She also had a pair of really big horns. Also her face was quite red, suggesting she was either out of breath or... judging by the sudden smell of sake... completely, and utterly drunk.

“Suika, I didn't know you were here today.” said the shrine maiden, suddenly finding her voice.

The small girl took a swig from her gourd, “I was here all day. Yesterday too. I'm here a lot more then ya think! This here...” the girl leaned forward to look at you, “This is that Reina girl, right? Yukari mentioned her a few times, an' I think I've heard you talk about her sometimes.”

“Erm, y-yes, I'm Reina and you...?”

“Suika Ibuki! Pleasure to meet ya.” she pointed to her head, “Before ya ask, the horns are because I'm an Oni. I dunno if you were actually going to ask, but figured I'd get it out of the way! Now come on, why you all standin' around like that? You were all going to enjoy a day of games, drinking, and merrymaking right?”

“Well, I do believe that was the intention... although, I don't know if the drinking was planned, but I suppose now it's not a question, is it Suika?” asked Sakuya carefully.

“It can't be a party without drinking! Come, come, I'm interested to hear more about you Reina. I know about Sakuya already, but all I know of you is what I've heard...” she cast a meaningful glance at Reimu, “And some interesting out-loud thoughts that I'll keep to myself.”

You weren't too sure what Suika meant by that, but Reimu stiffened and blushed a bit before wheeling around and prompting the rest of you to follow.

“Well, uhm, what do you want to know exactly? I don't really know what you know of me...”

The oni pondered the question for a full heartbeat, “Well, I guess I know a lot of stuff, but no real specifics. A good ol' day of drinking and playing though, that'll be a good way to learn a lot about one another! But hey, for starters, what do you do exactly? Like for a living I guess.”

“Not that you know what a living is Suika...” mumbled Reimu, leading you all into a room.

“Well, I do a little of restoring work I guess. Most of my work has been fixing up Remilia's stuff, but I'm trying to think of expanding that a bit...”

If Suika heard the shrine maiden's comment, she made no mention of it as she nodded her head, “I see, I see. Guess that sounds about right from what I've heard. I also hear you've thrown two really fun parties, and no one invited me!? That should be a crime! Well, I guess you get to make it up to me today.”

“If you couldn't tell, Suika pretty much only drinks and parties. She's pretty good at taking the trash out though, she may not look it, but she's incredibly powerful.”

The little oni patted her arm, “Yup! Don't even think of arm wrestling. I'd probably rip your arm off on accident, ahahahahaha!” boasted Suika.

“She's joking. She is quite powerful but she knows how to control it.” commented the maid casually, carefully seating herself at the table.

“Besides a content of strength is no fun anyway. Nothing is really even close to as strong as I am.” declared the oni smugly, “But a game of cards? That's a lot more even. Though, I think Sakuya is quite the card shark...”

Sakuya nodded her head slightly, “I do take some measure of pride in my cardplaying skills. I will not hold back, so I expect the same from all of you.”

Reimu placed some small cups on the table, before taking her own seat, “Yeah, I wasn't expecting you too. I know you're not much of a drinker Reina but well, Suika pretty much only tolerates sake during gatherings, sorry. Just don't try to drink more then you can handle.”

Suika's eyes glinted a bit as she sized you up, “A light drinker eh? Well, just make sure you drink in moderation. A party isn't a party without sake, and nothing is better then an oni's sake! But all the fun is gone if you end up passin' out or throwing up everywhere.”

“E-erm, right yes I'll do my best.” you say quickly.

The oni quickly fills everyone's cups from her gourd, and she also passes you a deck of cards, “I figure since you're the one who started all this, you should get to be the dealer. We have any idea what we're playin' exactly?”

The silver-haired maid took a careful sip of her cup, “We have not decided on the specifics, no. I would prefer there be some kind of betting involved, so there is a definite end to the game.”

“Bettin' huh? Makes sense. But what are we going to bet then...?”

You suddenly became painfully aware that all three of them were staring at you. Seems you were going to have to make all the rules...

- - -

Seems you always get stuck making all the choices...
[ ] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
- [ ] Some kind of point system for betting?
- [ ] Use some actual money! (Pick an amount, such as one yen)
- [ ] … They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they?
[ ] Blackjack is pretty easy and should even the playing field...
- [ ] Abstract points are good enough.
- [ ] Money, money! (Pick an amount)
- [ ] Yeah, it's just not your game unless its clothes, is it?
[ ] Other? (And the kind of betting)
[ ] How much are you going to drink? (Little, normal, heavy, etc.)

I have never written Suika what am I doing.
>> No. 174758
[ ] Blackjack is pretty easy and should even the playing field...
- [ ] Abstract points are good enough.

Blackjack has a little more chance in it than poker, which'll give us a hand against Sakuya. And we don't want to wager anything real against a pro player like her.

[ ] Drink a little

Tiny sips from our cup. We do not want to get wasted and lose our everything.
>> No. 174759
[X] Mexican Stud poker
-[X] Bet points but have a clothing-based buyback system
[X] Drink lightly at first

You have written Suika, she was part of Reina's first sleepover at the shrine.
>> No. 174763
[x]Five Card Stud
-[x]They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they?
[x]Drink Medium
>> No. 174770
[ ] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
- [ ] … They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they?
[ ] Drink normal
>> No. 174784
[x] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
- [x] Some kind of point system for betting?
[X] Drink lightly at first

Finish the house of cards story, the clothes choice would be a watered down version of that.
>> No. 174787
[x] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
-[x]They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they, but some kind of point system would be better.
[X] Drink lightly.

Blackjack is a bit too much luck of the draw and less skill than what I'd prefer, hence poker.

And by the way, I'm voting for a point system but there should at least be a nod towards the strip poker matches. They're getting kind of famous, apparently.
>> No. 174793
[X] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
- [x] … They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they?
>> No. 174823
[x] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
-[x]They're all waiting for you to say 'clothing', aren't they, but some kind of point system would be better.
[X] Drink lightly.
>> No. 174824
File 13834424268.jpg - (264.77KB , 800x1118 , 49e0b9e81065bcb481182673d5a9c236.jpg ) [iqdb]
174824
[X] Just a normal game of poker, that's simple enough.
-[X] Bet points but have a clothing-based buyback system
[X] Drink lightly.

Majority was going for stripping and points anyway.

- - -

You let out an exaggerated sigh and shrugged for effect, “Normal five card poker then, I suppose? Easy enough for everyone to know, I hope, but without all the luck and card counting of blackjack. And we'll use points, instead of money, with clothing-based buyback. Ok?”

“Clothing based buyback, huh? I had heard of your strip rules... how many points do we value everything at?” teased Sakuya.

“It'd be easiest to just give everything the same value right? Aren't we all wearing a different amount of clothing anyway?” answered Reimu, sizing up Sakuya carefully.

The oni rubbed her chin thoughtfully, “How about we just use like, six things or something? If anyone's wearin' too much, they either take it off now, or they just gotta sell multiple at a time or something. Fair is fair.”

“By my count, six should be more then fair for everyone – assuming anyone, and everyone, is willing to wager it all.”

Reimu sighed and shook her head, “Please Sakuya, the only one who is going to be wagering it all will be you in the end.”

“Whoa is that Reimu trash-talkin'!? What kinda influence have you been on her Reina? Do your parties have some kinda corrupting influence?”

“Suika, just shut up and pour the sake. And play your cards. Reina, you don't mind tracking all the points, right?”

It didn't really sound like a question so you merely nodded, “S-sure. Okay, six articles of clothing for everyone then. We'll just have all clothing cost the same... you can opt out of the buy out at any time, of course. Let's all have a fun game then, alright?”

“Of course. I'm looking forward to seeing your card skills in action Reina, I hope you do not disappoint...”

You got the feeling Sakuya was less into this to have fun, and far more into it to just flat out win... you were going to need to be careful around her, it seems.

~

The game started out fairly slow, with all of you fairly cautious of one another... well, except for Suika. She was probably the most into the whole 'fun' part of the game. Which, in a way, made her by far the most unpredictble and wild player. Sakuya, as you had expected, was quite good – not that there was a particular skill to getting the cards, but she had great control over her facial expressions and you could never once read a tell off of her.

Suika, on the other hand, couldn't do a poker face to save her life. But she didn't seem to need it either, as you had seen her look just as happy to have a hand of nothing, as she was to have a hand containing a three of a kind.

Reimu, by contrast, you had a much better grasp of having seen her play before. It also seemed that despite the shrine maiden never having played against Sakuya, the maid had a fairly good grasp of her playing style as well... in fact, you seemed to be the only player she couldn't read all that well. If you had to guess, this was simply because she barely knew you, and still hadn't got a good idea of your mindset.

Still, the sake really helped the game get going. You had somewhat wisely decided to keep your drinking rather low, which turned out to be a good choice as Suika's sake had quite the punch to it. Reimu and Suika both seemed capable of drinking quite a bit without any effect however. The silver-haired maid was drinking much like you, but you could already see the slight blush spreading across her face as the alcohol set in – she had taken in more then you, after all.

By now the afternoon was setting in, and the game was... well, quite underway and nearing the more interesting stages.

The oni had, by far, fared the worst of everyone. While her playstyle was wild and random, it also meant she often bet a lot without anything to back it up – and when she had something good, it was just too seldom to matter. Suika had already had to sell most of her wardrobe to you, leaving her in simply her underwear: just a simple sarashi wrapped across her flat chest, and a pair of underwear that you think was called a 'fundoshi' – something quite traditional for Japan, you think.

Reimu was faring a bit better, having only lost her sleeves, ascot, and hair accessories. That'd normally bring her down to three, but you had all agreed her ascot and accessories would've counted as one, so she was still rather comfortably dressed... except her dwindling point count suggest she'd soon be wagering her shirt or skirt.

Now you and Sakuya were another story entirely, with both of you having fairly matching point totals... and you had both only lost an article of clothing each. At the moment, you had a slight point lead over the maid, but it was rather slim... for the moment.

You had a fairly good hand, so you pressed it a bit. Reimu backed off, but Sakuya took the bait and you secured an easy victory over her. The maid frowned, considering her wardrobe – she had already lost her headband. With a shrug, she handed her apron over, and you corrected her point total.

“You are far better then I had expected Reina, I will confess... this is quite exciting! I'm quite glad mistress Remilia gave me this chance.”

The oni squinted and took a swig of her gourd, “I've never seen her so worked up before. She's really into this.”

“Yeah, I have to admit, I haven't seen her this focused in a while. You weren't going easy on us or something, were you?”

“Of course not. I have not had a day off like this in... months. I simply have not been used to being allowed to unwind this much. It is quite the rush, in a way actually.”

“Erm, well I'm glad you're enjoying it but, remember we're all here to have fun...” you say meekly.

Sakuya nods, “Of course, but I can be here to have fun and win, yes? Please, let us press on. I think I'm starting to figure you out Reina...”

Somehow, that felt kind of worrying.

~

Reimu frowned as she stood up and took off her skirt, throwing it into her pile, she quickly sat down as you adjusted her point total.

“You two are just too good at this...” she said with a sigh.

“I gotta say they are pretty good. I thought Aya was good at cards, but she's got nothing on these two.” observed Suika, casually lounging in the back of the room.

The oni had run out of clothing some hands ago, and had retreat to the back of the room with a blanket to observe. She still provided drinks, of course.

The silver-haired maid cocked her head to the side, “Is that so? I have never played her either. Perhaps I should at some point. Although, I cannot imagine she measures up to Reina. I haven't had this much fun in poker in years.”

The praise felt a bit unusual, given you lost your shirt just a hand ago, leaving you in just your bra and jeans now. Still, in all honesty, Sakuya was not faring much better... given she was wearing a dress, she was now down to her undergarments along with some stockings. You had to admit, she looked kind of fancy like that.

The two of you were tied with three articles of clothing left each, where as Reimu was down to her last two... it was coming down to the wire.

“I thank you for the compliment Sakuya, you're also quite good yourself.”

Sakuya nodded slightly, “I will accept your compliment humbly. Should we perhaps raise the stakes a bit?”

The shrine maiden narrowed her eyes, “Raise the stakes? We're not even playing for anything.”

“Not yet. I am merely offering the chance to spice up this game a bit.”

“Well... what are you offering Sakuya?” you ask cautiously.

“Nothing much. Suika is already eliminated, so she is exempt from this offer. I'm sure you've heard of the idea of the King's Game? I'm proposing much the same. The winner will be allowed to given an order to the losers. Nothing unreasonable of course, merely something amongst friends.”

“This is some kinda thing Remilia has taught you, hasn't she?” inquired Reimu critically, “I don't really like the sound of it...”

“I will admit she did mention it before, she is quite fond of being the King, after all. Do not misunderstand Reimu, I do not propose anything bad, just a bit of harmless fun. It should also serve as an incentive to not lose, yes? I promise that the orders should only be something reasonable.”

The shrine maiden frowned and leaned back, drinking her sake for a moment before answering.

“... Alright. I'll agree. How about you Reina, are you in?”

“If you do not wish to agree, that is fine. The bet will merely be between me and Reimu then. Should you happen to win, nothing will happen.”

It did sound kind of like harmless fun...

- - -

To accept or not...
[ ] Why not?
- [ ] Focus on winning, of course!
- [ ] Keep playing as is.
- [ ] … M-maybe you kind of want to see what she's thinking...
- [ ] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] No... that'll be alright.
- [ ] Still, no reason to not win!
- [ ] Win or lose, who cares?
- [ ] If you lost... well...
- [ ] Check Reimu and Sakuya out?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other?

Remember when I used to write proper strip poker? Yeah, me either! Though if, hypothetically I did (Moriya is just too far gone for me to bother), where would you like to have it be taking place at? Or any ideas at all.
>> No. 174825
[X] Why not?
-[X] Focus on winning, of course!
>> No. 174826
[x] Why not?
- [x] Focus on winning, of course!

Um... strip poker in Makai with Yumeko and Shinki? I dunno.
>> No. 174827
>>174824
- [x] … M-maybe you kind of want to see what she's thinking...
>> No. 174829
[X] Why not? 
- [ X] Focus on winning, of course!
- [X ] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out? 
>> No. 174846
[X] Why not?
- [X] Focus on winning, of course!
- [X] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out?

Eientei would be interesting, especially with Tewi, Mokou, and Keine are included.

The Buddhists and/or Taoists would be fun too, since they're probably the least often used characters on the site.
>> No. 174853
[X] Why not?
- [X] Focus on winning, of course!
- [X] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out?


I second Eientei. Tewi and poker is just too good a combination to pass up.
She doesn't even have to play, just as long as she's there.
>> No. 174857
[X] Why not?
- [X] Focus on winning, of course!

Priorities. You can ogle them after you win.
>> No. 174858
[X] Why not?
- [ X] Focus on winning, of course!
- [X ] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out?
>> No. 174859
File 138351256816.jpg - (112.48KB , 850x981 , sample-6f2a09f31a8d6c89733ceeaec1b0b7f4.jpg ) [iqdb]
174859
[X] Why not?
- [X] Focus on winning, of course!
- [X] Discreetly check Reimu and Sakuya out?

- - -

You were silent as you mulled over the offer before nodding slowly, “Ok. Yeah, that'll make it a little more fun. You're on Sakuya!”

The oni cheered in the background, “That's the spirit! Too bad I already lost... that kinda sucks.”

“Maybe you should actually play using your head next time then.” offered Reimu with a smug smirk.

“My playstyle was perfectly fine! Unpredictable and wild is the best way to go.”

“I will admit it is quite different, yet entirely too dependent upon your own luck Suika. But very well, the stakes have been offered. May the best Queen win then.”

This certainly raised the stakes in this otherwise friendly game. Having to only risk one's modesty was quite different from having to risk obeying an order as well. Still, it was a pretty nice way to make it all the more exciting, right? And besides, it was still a friendly game of course! A game amongst close friends.

Close friends who were in their underwear. Well, one of them was naked. It was a friendly game but... it could not hurt to... kind of discreetly take a peek or two, right?

You had seen Reimu in her underwear, and even less, before but somehow sneaking glances in a game of strip poker somehow made the simple act of looking all the more exciting? You weren't really sure how to explain it. She was only clad in her panties – some rather simple, plain looking white ones – and the bandage wrappings around her breasts, which you recall were called sarashi.

It was a bit strange how she wore such a japanese-style 'bra', yet wore seemingly normal panties... unlike say, Suika, who had that fundoshi thing. Unlike Suika, who was basically flat as a board, you could tell the shrine maiden's sarashi was wrapped around something. She was not particularly large, but she was also not particularly small... all in all, she was probably a fairly decent size, although you could not really tell for sure with the chest wrappings in the way.

“And I believe that puts you in the hole Reina.” declared Sakuya suddenly snapping you back to focus.

Seems you had been a bit distracted with checking out Reimu and had been going through the motions, a dangerous thing to be sure. Still, that had only cost you your jeans so it wasn't too bad yet... either way, checking the points, Sakuya was not doing too much better then you anyway.

Thinking of Sakuya, she was someone you had never seen this way before! Sneaking glances at the silver-haired maid proved more challenging then Reimu, you always felt like she was looking in your direction often which made it a bit difficult.

The maid's skin was rather pale, not unhealthy you suppose, but she was certainly lacking in a tan. Which, made sense given the amount of time she seemed to spend indoors, but it still made her skin look very beautiful. In comparison to Reimu, Sakuya's undergarments were practically a work of art though.

Where as you, and Reimu, just wore some rather simple and functional undergarments, Sakuya either had expected this to happen and dressed up for it, or maybe she just always dressed this way. The silver-haired woman still had her stockings on, and even seemed to be sporting a garter. Her bra and panties, seemed to be a bluish color and were quite lacy and fancy. Sakuya also seemed to have quite the chest as well, although it was difficult to tell with the bra in the way, but she was certainly not lacking in the chest department.

“So, Reina... you going to buy in then?” asked Reimu curiously, once more jumping you back to reality.

“Eh?! No way, did I really fall that...” you sputtered, quickly doing the math and... yeah, you were in the hole again.

Sakuya chuckled softly, “Of course, if you don't buy in... well, it is your decision.”

Agh! You had never lost quite this... well, no you had got this far against Yuuka but she had allowed you to remain dressed. This time though... letting out a sigh you removed your bra and reluctantly added it to your pile, while adjusting your point total.

“I-It's got to be this sake, I need to focus I guess...” you say with a weak chuckle, not really willing to admit that ogling your opponents was maybe not the best idea.

“Ooooh, I didn't know Reina was quite the... gifted girl. I mean, I had an idea but seeing those outside her bra is somethin' else.” teased Suika in the back, grinning lecherously at you

Your face heated up and turned red, “He-hey don't go ogling me like some kind of pervert back there Suika...”

Just ignore the fact you were sort of doing that a second ago.

“I have to admit, I'm rather impressed. You have a figure many a young woman is probably jealous of.” comments Sakuya offhand.

“Can the two of you stop sizing up Reina that way, it's kinda creepy. She's got big breasts, so what? You've got them too.”

The oni laughed, “Yeah, about that... still, come on Reimu you gotta admit – she's pretty big.”

The shrine maiden coughed and glanced at you, “W-well, look come on, they're just breasts. Sure they're kind of... l-look, we have a game to finish, right?”

It did occur to you this was the first time Reimu had seen you topless outside the bath. Sakuya had never seen you this undressed, nor Suika of course. It was kind of embarrassing, but that's what you get for taking your mind off the game... you were down to your last scrap of clothing, but with a point-based game you could still pull something off...

~

Sakuya stared you down carefully, watching you as she laid down her cards one by one... the game was down to the wire for real this time. Reimu had busted out just a few hands ago, joining Suika off to the side in the nude... Sakuya's stockings had been sold off even earlier then that. Right now, both you and the maid were in the hole so whoever won this hand...

“A valiant effort Reina but I believe...” said the maid slowly, laying down her last card, “That I am queen, am I not?”

You gulped as you looked over the silver-haired woman's hand – a royal flush. Your shoulders slumped and you nodded, “That's quite the hand to close the game out with Sakuya... you win.”

“Awww, Sakuya didn't even lose any of her actual underwear even. That's kind of a shame...” commented Suika with a sigh.

“It was rather close. I thought I was going to lose my bra that hand, but I got a lucky draw. It was a good battle Reina, I was honored to challenge such a worthy opponent.” said Sakuya leaning back a bit, “Now then... what order shall the Queen give, hmm...”

You had almost kind of forgotten about that.

“You're really good Sakuya, I have to admit...”

The maid gave you a warm smile, “You are quite good yourself. I suspect you only lost due to being... distracted for a moment, and I just happened to take advantage.” there was a slight twinkle in the maid's eyes as she said that, “I would be honored to replay you anytime you wish. Now then, I think I have the perfect orders in mind!”

“I get the feeling I'm really not going to like this...” grumbled the shrine maiden, taking her seat back at the table.

“I'm sure you'll like it Reimu. Now then, first thing... for your order Reina, I order that in the near future, you will come to the mansion and play a game with Mistress Remilia. A strip one, of course. I have heard her often say she wants to play one with you. Will this kind of order be fine with you?”

You blinked in surprise, sitting back down after removing your panties and adding them to your pile, “E-erm, I don't see why not... that sounds like a strange order though...”

The maid chuckled softly, “It may be my day off, but I still look out for my mistress. Perhaps when you come to do it, we can have our rematch as well. Regardless, I will not place a deadline, but I expect it soon. As for Reimu...” Sakuya smirked and pointed to her lips, “kiss Reina on the lips. For a minute. If she consents of course... if she does not, you must instead kiss her cheeks, forehead, and neck... let's say... ten times on each spot.”

“W-what?!” gasped the shrine maiden, her eyes wide as she stared at the maid.

“Ooooh, that's quite the order! Come on Reimu, you know you hafta agree – it's the rules, and you always respect 'em!”

Reimu opened and closed her mouth in shock as the maid laughed, her eyes fixed on the two of you.

“Well, go on Reimu. See which one Reina will allow you to do. One or the other.”

The shrine maiden's face was bright red as she made eye contact with you and gulped, “W-well... will a kiss on the lips be fine? I-if not, well... I have to do the other then. So-sorry.”

- - -

Sakuya was a dangerous woman indeed!
[ ] No helping it. The lips!
[ ] The lips are just... t-too much...
[ ] Make a counter? (write-in)
[ ] Make a run for it!
[ ] Other?
>> No. 174860
[X] No helping it. The lips!
>> No. 174861
[x] No helping it. The lips!
>> No. 174865
[X] No helping it. The lips!

We agreed to the bet, knowing full well that it would lead to something, we can't back out of it now.
Worst case, blame it on the oni's liqo- liqer booze tomorrow.
>> No. 174866
[X] Kiss Reimu's lips
>> No. 174868
[x] No helping it. The lips!

The alternative seems like overkill.
>> No. 174874
File 138354002290.jpg - (557.50KB , 725x1000 , 18b032cb9812030cd9229ed6d3986d50.jpg ) [iqdb]
174874
[x] No helping it. The lips!

- - -

You gulped and meekly nodded your head, “Y-yeah. Okay, g-go ahead Reimu.”

The maid pulled out a golden pocketwatch from... somewhere.

“Okay when I say start, go ahead and kiss. I'll start the time once I see your lips touch. A full minute – if you break it, you're starting over.”

Reimu glanced at Sakuya as she leaned her face close to you, “She's way too into this...”

Reimu was close enough to you now that your noses were practically touching. In fact, her breathing at this distance was kind of tickling you a bit also. You could also smell her pretty well right now... she had a very... plain smell, you guess? You didn't pick out any scents or anything... maybe she didn't have anything scented? She just kind of smelled like normal, run of the mill soap.

Maybe you should think of getting her something scented or maybe -

Then suddenly the shrine maiden tilted her head and sealed her lips over your own. It had been nearly a year since Reimu's first meek, awkward kiss to you. This one was just entirely different! There was a lot more... force behind it, perhaps passion was the right word. The shrine maiden was busy pressing her lips up against your own, and you were dimly aware of feeling her squeeze your waist just ever so slightly.

You were just utterly shocked and wide eyed – unlike Reimu, whose eyes were closed and her face as red as a tomato. It took probably several seconds before you could even really appreciate the kiss. You couldn't even keep track of time, but eventually you heard a clap, and the shrine maiden pulled away quickly.

“I have to admit, that was pretty impressive. I didn't know you were such a talented kisser Reimu.” commented Sakuya, closing her pocketwatch.

Reimu coughed and averted her eyes, “T-there. One minute. Queenship is over. Can I get dressed now?”

~

Everyone split up for a moment to get changed in separate rooms. Sakuya had gotten dressed the fastest and insisted on remaining near you, and as you were at least clad in your underwear at that point, you saw no reason to say no. She had merely sat in silence in the room, nursing a cup of sake as you got dressed. When you were busy buttoning your blouse, the maid spoke up.

“Thank you Reina. I haven't had fun like this in months... maybe years. I have very few days off, but this one was by far the best.”

“It's not even that late yet... but I'm glad you're having fun.”

“I hope my order was not out of line.”

You shook your head, bending over to pick up your vest, “N-no it was fine! Really. I can't say I would've been able to think up any interesting orders myself...”

Sakuya chuckled, “You can be surprised Reina. I was more interested in the card game personally, but I couldn't pass up such a chance to have some fun with Reimu is all...”

“You really enjoy cards, don't you Sakuya?”

“I suppose I do. I never think about it that much, and I rarely have a chance to really play cards. There is always work to be done, and I'm the only one who can do it.”

“You always do seem to be busy. You really should try letting Remilia give you some more time off – even if its just a few hours. I'm sure the mansion won't fall apart without you if you go on break.”

The maid laughed, “You never know sometimes. I am sorry I have to leave every decision up to you. Perhaps I really do need to get out more... mistress Remilia has often told me I need to be more sociable.”

“Yeah it wouldn't kill you to get out more often Sakuya.” interrupted the voice of Reimu, speaking loudly through the door.

“You can open the door Reimu, I'm changed.” you call back with a chuckle.

The door slid open and the now fully clothed shrine maiden entered, “Ah good. What have you been doing on your day off anyway Sakuya?”

“Oh, nothing too exciting until just now. It still has been quite fun...” the silver-haired maid glanced towards you, “This reminds me, don't you have something for Reimu, Reina?”

It had almost completely slipped your mind in all the hustle and bustle of the card game! You mentally slapped yourself for nearly forgetting something so important. You reached into your bag and fished around in it for a moment as you walked towards Reimu, pulling out the bracelet and presenting it to her.

“Here, I made this for you Reimu. I know it's nothing amazing or anything, but uhm, well... I thought of making a kind of memento.”

Reimu's eyes widened a bit in surprise as she took the bracelet, looking at the beads, “Multi-colored beads...? I can't say the significance of these colors is something I'm familiar with...”

“I don't think there's any real symbolize to them... but uhm, well I just kind of thought of the times you taught me how to fight and do danmaku and all... and I thought multi-colored beads kind of fit danmaku, you know?”

The shrine maiden looked down at the bracelet, slowly counting and feeling ever bead, before carefully untieing it and then tieing it around her wrist, “... Thank you. I wish I had some kind of memento to give you in return I... I wasn't expecting a gift.”

“It's fine, I didn't make it expecting anything in return! I'm glad you like it though. I wasn't really too sure if you'd like it or not... and it also looks good. That's good. I'm glad it turned out well, hahaha...”

“Awww, that's such a touchin' gift. Now the two of you should kiss again. Really deeply this time I think, maybe with some tongue?” offered Suika suddenly, poking her head into the room.

Reimu spun around and slammed her fist into the oni's head, “Shut up you! Don't go ruining the atmosphere!”

The oni laughed, apparently unphased by the blow, “Ahahahaha, fine, fine. You're so much fun to tease. Hey Reina, the game was a lotta fun. But I'm going to get goin'. I already took the trash out Reimu, don't worry. I'll see ya around.”

“She is always the interesting one...” chuckled Sakuya.

“More like a parasite. Can't get rid of her at all – she doesn't listen. I at least get her to take the trash out once in a while. Hey, you all don't mind having some snacks and tea, do you? I know we just had sake and all but... lunch time, eh?”

You chuckled and patted Reimu on the back, “I see no problem with that.”

~

As usual Reimu was unable to provide a particularly large meal, but she more then made up for it with the company and spirits. As the three of you snacked, drank, and chatted there was an unexpected interruption during the meal – someone was at the entrance of the shrine calling out. Reimu had departed to see who it was, noting visitors were quite rare...

It didn't take the shrine maiden long to return though.

“Who was it? A visitor?” you asked curiously, putting your tea cup down.

Reimu shook her head, “No, not really. A messenger, actually. Looking for you, in fact, she had this letter to pass on...” the brown-haired girl reached into her sleeve and pulled out an envelope, “She didn't say much though, just said it was for you.”

The letter was actually inside an envelope and... you took a sniff, yes it was certainly scented. You could not place the exact smell, but it smelled rather pleasant actually... a lot like flowers, in fact. The envelope was a cream color, and was closed by a flower-shaped seal.

It took your mind a moment to recognize the seal – the flower was the same as on that coin Kosuzu had given you. Curious... you kind of wanted to keep the seal intact, but it was sadly a wax seal and the only other way to open it would be to shred the envelope itself, and that also seemed like a terrible thing to do.

Within was an elegantly written letter. Very fancy writing, in fact.

Miss Roots:

The Lotus Pavilion is the Human Village's premier tea house, providing elegant and enjoyable companionship to clients from all over Gensokyo. We have recently been informed of your unique talents, and we believe that a mutually beneficial arrangement is possible. It is our pleasure to extend an offer of employment.


You raised an eyebrow and pointed out the letter, thus far, to your friends. You had never heard of this place before, but you had the idea that Limstella was the one who told them about you.

“Never heard of it. It sounds... fancy though. I mean, look at that paper! The envelope even. And is that perfume?” commented Reimu, sniffing the envelope.

The maid shook her head as well, “I have never heard of it either. I cannot place the scent of the perfume, but I can recognize it is a fairly well-made one. I cannot imagine it was cheap either. Whatever the establishment it is, I would imagine this letter is quite sincere.”

“I didn't even know we had any tea houses in the village. Most people prefer making their own.”

“Perhaps sometimes they like to indulge? What does the rest of the letter say Reina?”

Furniture restoration is a difficult task, and the Lotus Pavilion contains a wide variety of intricate pieces in need of repair. Any work you do for us would be handsomely compensated.

Please consider visiting the address below if you wish to discuss the matter further.

Sincerely,


Interestingly, rather then a name or signature, the letter was simply signed with a flower design... the same kind on the seal, and on the coin. Underneath that was an address and some directions to this 'Lotus Pavilion'.

“An interesting offer. Do you intend to accept it?” asked Sakuya carefully.

“Uhm, well... I'm not sure. I know I was kind of looking for more work and all...”

The maid chuckled, “I can tell you're feeling a bit awkward talking about this in front of me. Worry not, mistress Remilia understands if you want to seek more employment. She pays you a nice amount, I know, but it's certainly acceptable to want more.”

“There's still a good amount of daylight left if you wanted to go do it today, I think.” offered Reimu, glancing outside.

“True, but it's kind of Sakuya's day off, and I'm supposed to be helping her relax, not really look for work...”

“If you want to go, I do not mind. I am actually curious to see what this place is, actually. I have never heard of it, and I must admit I am quite curious.”

- - -

This was an unexpected change of events...
[ ] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
[ ] They can wait until tomorrow, right?
- [ ] Stay at the shrine.
- [ ] Go home and relax? Read books?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other

The sideplot begins. Also, surprise, two updates in one day! Don't expect this to happen often.
>> No. 174875
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.
>> No. 174876
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.
>> No. 174879
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

Pardon me while I hop on this bandwagon.

And shame on you all. Checking them out got us a few meager glances. I'm sure that if we focused on winning we'd have gotten delicious meido tits. Ah well.

What exactly IS this pavilion thing anyways?
>> No. 174885
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

>>174879
It's a whorehouse.
>> No. 174886
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

For gods sake clarify what work you will be doing for them.
>> No. 174889
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X] Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

Most of their business would be happening at evening/nighttime, so going during the day means a minimum risk of accidentally walking in on something awkward.


>>174885
It seems a bit too fancy to be called a whorehouse. That's a word for establishments that lack class and refinement.
I mean, it is still totally a whorehouse if you want to call a spade a bloody shovel, but they'd probably say something like "offering pleasurable companionship" rather than "you can pick up whores here".
>> No. 174894
>>174889
Yeah, that was me calling spades bloody shovels. The Lotus Pavilion is a damn swanky whorehouse.
>> No. 174900
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

Oh, this'll be fun!
>> No. 174915
File 138359176648.jpg - (268.35KB , 850x886 , sample-26b2e67fa6e23534a8397333e59df313.jpg ) [iqdb]
174915
[X] Well... why not? May as well get it done today with Sakuya.
-[X]Let's bring Reimu with us, while we're at it.

- - -

Sakuya did seem okay with the idea, and it was proper professional etiquette to respond to any job offers as soon as possible... it showed a lot of respect and a great desire to work! It would've been in poor taste to potentially start by offending a possible client.

“I think I want to go look into it today. It's always best to get off to a good start with a potential client, and there's no better way to do that than to respond promptly to an offer! Do you want to come along, Reimu?”

The shrine maiden blinked in surprise “Oh. Uhm, well... alright, sure. I'm not sure why you really want to bring me along though but, haha...”

“Are you not a little bit curious, Reimu?” Sakuya asked with a sly smile.

“Well... a little bit. I guess it can't hurt for me to visit the village more often. Maybe they'll remember to actually donate and...” she frowned as she saw Sakuya hiding a laugh. “I'm serious! Don't laugh!”

~

The shrine wasn't too far from the village, particularly by air, so you didn't lose much time heading there. Seeing as the village lacked things like street signs and home addresses, the three of you decided to find this Lotus Pavilion by foot – the address was more of a set of directions after all, and you couldn't exactly figure out everything in the air.

The directions placed the Pavilion near what Aya had dubbed the 'commercial' district, and you probably based by Akemi's on the way there. There was no time to stop by Limstella's to thank her, besides which the directions didn't bring you by her little establishment. You quickly found yourself in a completely new area though, and you were thankful the directions were well-made.

It also helped that the penmanship was excellent.

Eventually the three of you found yourselves walking down standing on a long avenue, flanked on both sides by buildings bearing red lanterns. Judging by the directions, the Lotus was just down this stretch somewhere... not too far, so if you just continued down the road you wouldd find it in no time at all. The letter did say the establishment would have that flower design on it, after all.

“I think if we just keep going down this street, it should be on our... left? Right? Uhm...” you trail off to a mumble, pausing to re-read the letter for a moment.

“Oi! Are the three of you lost?” interrupted a voice from behind you.

Peering over your shoulder was a rather young woman, fairly attractive, wearing a very loose-fitting yukata. She was waving her hand at the three of you, gesturing at the building behind her.

“Why not come in for some refreshment? My friends and I would love to get to know you~”

Reimu peered at the girl suspiciously. “Uhm... no that's alright. I think it's just down the road Reina...”

The girl didn't seem to take any action as the three of you continued down the street, although you noticed Sakuya glancing around a bit more as you progressed. In fact, now that you thought about it, while there wasn't a great number of buildings here – many were a fairly good size though – there was a thing they all seemed to have in common.

Namely, a pretty girl standing outside and beckoning you all in. They all seemed to back off if you made no move to accept, though. There weren't too many others in this area right now besides them, although you could hear snippets of calls to the few others in the area, and some of them did follow the girls in.

Before long, the three of you stood in front of what was probably the largest and most well-made building in this area. You noticed a flower design near the entrance, and fished around in your bag for that bronze coin, holding it up to compare.

“Well, this looks like the place. Same design as the coin... which matched the seal.”

Askuya peered down the street before gesturing inside, “Well, shall we be off then? I'm even more curious now.”

“This is a pretty weird part of the village though... it's a lot quieter then all the shops, but there's all these girls standing around. I wonder why?” mused Reimu.

You shrugged and headed on in, still holding the coin in your hand; you wanted to figure out what that's all about while you were here, so there was no sense in putting it away.

Once you entered the building proper, your nose was immediately assaulted by a... very pleasant scent. You couldn't place it exactly, but it was a pleasing smell that seemed to naturally help you relax. You also found yourself quickly scanning the room; not only was the interior in a very good state of repair, that the level of craftsmanship was very high. It seemed that the owner of this place put a great deal of effort into securing the highest quality work. It made you feel more comfortable about getting an offer from this place.

In front of you was a counter, and seated behind it was a young woman dressed in a kimono. She glanced up from whatever she was reading to offer you and your friends a polite smile, her eyes lingering on Reimu a bit before turning to you.

“Welcome to the Lotus Pavilion, honored guests. How may I help you today?” Her gaze flicked to the coin in your hand, and her eyes and smile both suddenly widened. “Ah, make that a welcome back! Please, feel free to browse tonight's selection!” Before you could even answer, the young girl was pressing a thin book into your hands. "Or perhaps you would like to schedule a visit to the back lounge? The book for that is back here... Oh, and you've brought new guests as well! As you know, our referral system offers a reward of--"

"E-excuse me, I ah, I don't really know what you're talking about actually." you interrupt quickly, "I came here in response to a letter, which I have uhm..."

Reimu gently plucked the book from your hands as you pulled out the letter to show to the receptionist.

"Here it is! I got a job offer, so I came here right away to get the details."

"A... job offer?" The girl tilts her head, quickly glancing over your figure.

"To restore furniture," you added.

An embarrassed smile covered the girl's face as she struggled to hide a blush. "A-ah, of course! In that case, please allow me to find the hostess..." She bowed deeply, then hurried off into the hallways past the lobby.

Well, that was a little unusual. Still, at least that was all sorted out... although you had forgotten to ask about this coin. You tucked the letter and coin back into your bag, turning your attention to your friends.

Both of whom were busily flipping through the book with the most unusual looks on their faces. Sakuya had her eyebrows raised in amusement, while Reimu's face was covered in a blush as her eyes widened from time to time in amazement.

"What are you two looking at...?"

The shrine maiden jumped slightly, slamming the book shut. "N-nothing at all! So, ah, where did she go?"

"To fetch the hostess, she said," Sakuya responded smugly.

You were kind of curious as to what was in that book to warrant all those reactions, but you pushed that thought aside for now.

"This is a pretty interesting place... very fancy. Also very well-cared for. I feel kind of honored to even get offered the chance to do work here."

The silver-haired maid nodded in agreement. "The quality does seem quite high. I have to wonder who made it all... mistress Remilia's belongings are mostly from the outside. I was not aware such craftsmanship was available here."

"You can find anything if you look hard enough I suppose. Maybe it's even from the youkai..." Reimu offered with a shrug, her face beginning to lose its scarlet blush.

"Miss Roots! A pleasure to meet you." A mature female voice drew your attention to the froont of the room. Standing there was a middle-aged woman in a kimono, who greeted you with a deep bow and a pleasant smile. Behind her, the receptionist quietly slinked back to the desk.

"It's a pleasure to meet you as well miss." you said quickly, bowing in respect. "And ah, just Reina is fine."

"I'm pleased to see that you responded so quickly. Come, let us discuss our arrangement," the woman said, beckoning for the three of you to follow as she turned back to the halls.

You quickly set off after the hostess, Reimu and Sakuya keeping stride with you. The maid seemed to be keeping pace with you, although you noted the shrine maiden was hanging back slightly, glancing around with clear curiosity. The hallway was lined with identical doors, all of them closed quite tightly. The nice smell persisted, and you thought you could hear strange high-pitched noises coming through the walls...

"I must apologize for the conduct of my receptionist. She's still new here, so she has a tendency to get ahead of herself."

You tilted your head slightly. "Ah, she did nothing bad? Ah! We forgot to return the book! Erm..." you glanced back towards Reimu, who was the last person to have it.

"I dropped it off on the desk as we passed, don't worry about it."

Well that was a relief. It would've been a bit awkward to have kept that. Whatever it was.

"Ah, here we are." The hostess slid open a door, ushering the three of you into a cozy room. It looked more like a bedroom than a tearoom, with a large futon in one corner and a single lantern on the wall. In the middle, you saw a few pieces of assorted furniture arranged next to a pair of cushions. The smell seemed even stronger here, probably to mask a slightly musky odor that lingered in the air.

"Forgive me, I hadn't expected you to bring guests." She walked over to the far wall and opened a closet, fetching another pair of cushions to set out. "Please, be seated."

This place really was something else. You had never been inside a tea house before, but this Pavilion was really setting a standard. Your trained eye was already quickly appraising everything in the room as being high-quality and well-cared-for. Sitting on a cushion was a bit unusual to you, but you could handle it.

"Sorry for that, you happened to catch me during a visit, and we were all a little curious, so I invited them along. Maybe I should have seen if that was appropriate first..." It had really been a while since you had to go meet a client like this.

The hostess replied with a sly smile. "Oh, that's no trouble at all. It's always a pleasure to introduce new guests to the Pavilion... especially ones of your stature."

"This is quite the establishment." offered Sakuya casually, taking her seat.

"But of course. The Lotus Pavilion has been the village's premier tea house for generations. I'm happy to hear you approve."

"I still didn't even know we had tea houses around here... I really should get out more..." mumbled Reimu, who was still looking around the room. "Never seen anything like this."

The woman seemed to chuckle silently at Reimu before turning back to you. "Well, why don't we get down to business? As you have seen, our furniture is of a caliber not commonly seen in Gensokyo, and much of it is quite old and precious. It naturally gets worn down in our line of business, but restoring it is a task beyond the Human Village's craftsmen..."

"And so you hope that I can do it, right?" you ask carefully, "Well, I can say with confidence that restoring old furniture is something I'm quite good at."

"She has done excellent work with the furniture of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, if I may add." offered the maid diplomatically.

"Precisely. Do you believe something like this would be within your ability to restore?" The hostess gestured to an old wooden chair sitting next to her.

You rise from your seat and walk over to inspect the chair, running your fingertips across the wood and examining it carefully. Pushing aside your evaluation of the craftsmanship - which was excellent, as expected - the chair was certainly as old as she said. Lots of wear and use... but something you could certainly fix up and make look brand new.

After another moment of consideration, you nodded your head. "Certainly. This chair is quite old, but I can fix this up rather nicely. It'll look brand new by the time I'm done with it. I could probably have it done with... in a day, maybe two tops."

The hostess smiles happily. "Ah, that's better than I had hoped! We would be willing to offer one yen to have you restore the chair in two days, with further contracts to be offered on a case-by-case basis."

One yen!? That was quite the payment... you hadn't made even half that in one job before. This place easily offered payment on par with Remilia.

"Of course, there are other ways we could compensate you... perhaps you'd like to find out just what that bronze coin is good for~?" As she spoke, the woman's smile changed to a more mischievous grin. "And it would be a shame for you to leave so soon. Why don't you enjoy some tea with one of our girls while you're here?"

- - -

It felt good to have a job offer!
[ ] You'll accept of course.
- [ ] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
- [ ] Mention you'll do it for less as a token of good will or some such?
- [ ] What is this coin for anyway?
- [ ] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?
- [ ] Other? (write-in)
[ ] It's tempting, but for now...
- [ ] You'll accept the offer to stay for a bit, though.
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other?

This update brought to you by me, and a fellow writer - the creator of Lotus Pavilion himself!
>> No. 174917
[X] You'll accept of course.
- [X] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
- [X] Mention you'll do it for less as a token of good will or some such?
- [X] What is this coin for anyway?
- [X] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?
- [X] Can Reimu and Sakuya enjoy some tea as well?
>> No. 174918
Wow, I totally misread the last vote. I thought we were bringing Reimu to the SDM for the game we promised Sakuya.
>> No. 174924
[x] You'll accept of course.
- [x] What is this coin for anyway?
- [x] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?

Wonder who we'll meet~
>> No. 174925
[x] You'll accept of course.
- [x] What is this coin for anyway?
- [x] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?
>> No. 174926
[X] You'll accept of course.
-[X] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
-[X] As a shopkeeper, she has to worry about security, right? Maybe she can put you in touch with some actual bodyguards? You've been relying on your friends for protection, but you don't want to be an inconvenience to them.
-[X] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?
-[X] What is this coin for anyway?

Reina might be too shy to accept the more ‘interesting’ means of compensation while she has to have a friend with her as a bodyguard.
>> No. 174929
[X] You'll accept of course.
-[X] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
-[X] Mention you'll do it for less as a token of good will or some such?
[X] What is this coin for anyway?
[X] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?
-[X] Can Reimu and Sakuya enjoy some tea as well?

Being paid that much when they haven't even seen her craftsmanship is rather intimidating (although her work is totally worth that much).
Besides, seeing how Reina would probably like them to be repeat customers, it wouldn't hurt to give them the classic offer of a first time customer discount.
Chairs are totally gateway furniture, anyway. First you get chairs restored. Then coffee tables and bedstands, and before you know it you have a king size bed waiting for restoration while you're craving to have that full matching set of drawers and vanity table restored too, because you need that like-new furniture fix, man!

Aaanyway, it is a damn swanky "teahouse" so I'm sure they have some really good tea.


I'm also rather interested in what they saw in the, ah, "evening's offers" since, going by what I saw while skimming through a Lotus Pavilion story on /at/, it's not completely impossible that they might have seen a familiar face or two...
>> No. 174930
[x] You'll accept of course.
- [x] What is this coin for anyway?
- [x] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?

Make it so.
>> No. 174953
[x] You'll accept of course.
- [x] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
>> No. 174981
>>174918
It happens. Sakuya did say it would be in the future, since she's not supposed to go back to the mansion on her 'day off'.

>>174929
Just to clarify a bit.
The Pavilion is in RiG, yes. But don't think that what you saw in the /at/ threads happened within RiG.

i.e. Just because Aya and Meiling where in it, doesn't mean Aya and Meiling in RiG worked there. I'm basically crossing it over, with official permission, but I'm not crossing over the events that took place.

If that makes any sense.
>> No. 175002
>>174981
Okay then. Just the location, not the events. Got it.
>> No. 175029
File 138371547830.jpg - (135.20KB , 586x819 , 6c7a09356814904f0304159fcb3575ab.jpg ) [iqdb]
175029
[x] You'll accept of course.
- [x] Promise to finish and deliver it one day. (You really could)
- [x] What is this coin for anyway?
- [x] You're already here, so you may as well stay for a bit, right?

- - -

You'd come all this way and everything, so obviously you were going to accept. It'd be kind of a wasted trip and pretty bad manners to do otherwise. This could also be a good way to make a lasting impression - they had given you two days, but this kind of job? You could do it in one, easy.

"I'll accept the job. In fact, I'll even finish it early - done and delivered by tomorrow," you declared confidently.

The woman raised her eyebrows at that. "Truly? That's an ambitious claim. We would be quite impressed if you were to manage a feat like that."

It really was a bit ambitious, but it was too late to take it back. And you could certainly do it!

"Well, I do aim to impress! And, well, I'm already here, so I think staying for a while longer would be a nice idea... ah, if none of my guests disagree...?"

The silver-haired maid shook her head, "Not at all."

"Same for me. Be kind of a wasted trip to just come here and then leave."

The hostess nodded. "Wonderful. I'll send someone to accompany you while I write up the contract." She then stood up to leave, taking a moment to smoothe out her expensive-looking kimono.

"Ah, a quick question if I may!" you ask, reaching into your bag to retrieve the bronze coin. "Could you ah, tell me the signifiance of this coin? It seems the receptionist thought it rather important..."

The hostess smirked at that. "Curious, are you? That coin denotes you as a valuable customer of the Lotus Pavilion, one who's done an excellent job pleasing our girls. Holding it grants you a number of privileges beyond what we offer our regular guests. Discounts, house calls, threesomes..."

Pleasing the girls? And those benefits...! You felt your face heat up a bit in embarrassment. She didn't mean those kinds of threesomes, did she? You had never heard of a tea house offering those kind of things... maybe you'd have to be more careful with who you showed that coin to.

"You seem to have picked yours up by accident, but the previous holder's loss is your gain. You are free to take advantage of it, though we may take it away if you prove yourself unworthy."

You nodded, "I-I see. I didn't quite know what this coin meant, but... okay, that was very enlightening. Thank you." you briefly wondered if you should offer to return it, but she didn't really seem to think it was a bad thing that you found it...

"You're very welcome. I hope this is the start of a most fruitful relationship. And if any of you ever find yourselves in need of some companionship..." Her eyes flicked to Reimu and Sakuya.

The maid merely inclined her head respectfully, while the shrine maiden's face lit up red in embarrassment. She managed to open and close her mouth a few times, but nothing really came out.

The hostess suppressed another chuckle. "Make yourselves at home. I'll send someone to accompany you shortly." With that, she exited the room, closing the door behind her.

Sakuya let out a chuckle as the hostess left. "I see. Well, that coin confirms my suspicions about this place. You have landed yourself in a most interesting position, Reina."

The shrine maiden peered at the maid with narrowed eyes. "What do you mean? I mean, I get this isn't just some kind of tea house..."

"It actually is a tea house, in a manner of speaking. Of course, one of the older usages of the word goes hand in hand with a geisha house. While conversation, companionship, and the like were not uncommon, a geisha was quite capable of being far more intimate... if they so desired," the maid casually explained.

You raised your hand slightly, as if in a classroom, "So, erm, you mean it's kind of like a... erm... you know... b-brothel?" you choked.

The maid chuckled and shook her head. "Only in the sense that a shovel and a spade are the same thing. While you can certainly seek a sexual experience in both a brothel and a geisha house, the key difference lies in the execution. A brothel is far more... explict, let's say. We passed by a few on the way here.

"The Lotus Pavilion gives off far more of an elegant charm. After all, it does not advertise itself as a brothel. I would imagine that should the pleasures of the flesh be persued, it is entirely up to the hostess if she should accept."

"You know way too much about this kind of thing, Sakuya..." mumbled Reimu. "I didn't even know we had anything like this in the village."

"I-I guess it shouldn't be all that surprising, Reimu... as the saying goes, it's erm, well the oldest profession in the world. I guess it'd be more surprising if there wasn't one." You glanced at the coin. "... Though I admit, I'm still pretty surprised myself. Just who the heck owned this before? Maybe I shouldn't think about it..."

"Maybe you should wash it off too. Along with your hands," Sakuya offered teasingly.

Just then, you were interrupted by the sound of the door sliding open. Glancing over, you saw a woman with pale skin and lavender hair standing in the doorway. She was only wearing a few things: a white hat, a matching scarf, and a dark blue dress with white snowflake-shaped frills that seemed a few sizes too small for her. The dress showed off an awful lot of cleavage, and it cut off just a bit past her knees; there wasn't much left to the imagination. She walked in and set down a tray with four cups of tea, then greeted the three of you with a deep bow that made it hard not to look down her dress.

"Good evening, honored guests. My name is Letty Whiterock, and it will be my pleasure to entertain the three of you." She spoke with a warm, friendly smile that contrasted with her polite words.

Your face reddened a bit at that sight. "E-erm, yes ah, nice to meet you as well Letty!" you sputtered quickly.

The shrine maiden coughed in surprise. "Le-Letty!? You work here?"

Sakuya took one of the cups and nodded to Letty. "Thank you for the tea. It has been a while, Letty. I must say, this is about the last place I would have expected to see anyone I know, even if only briefly."

Letty answered all three of you with a polite chuckle. "It's always a surprise, isn't it? I've felt the same way myself a few times." She reached out for a cup and took a small, delicate sip, completely at ease despite your and Reimu's discomfort. "The hostess has instructed me to serve you in whatever way you desire. We could do something fun to pass the time... or perhaps you'd just like to chat."

- - -

W-well... do you have anything in mind? (Select as many as feels appropriate)
[ ] Questions, questions, questions!
- [ ] Ask about the Pavilion in general? Or anything specific?
- [ ] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [ ] When did she start working here?
- [ ] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Serve...?
- [ ] Maybe you could get like a massage or something...?
- [ ] Why not play a game of something?
- [ ] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [ ] Maybe you could play strip rock-paper-scissors?
- [ ] Other?
[ ] Other

Once more brought to you by the joint effort of myself and the creator of Lotus Pavilion!
>> No. 175041
[x] Questions, questions, questions!
- [x] Ask about the Pavilion in general
- [x] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [x] When did she start working here?
- [x] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[x] Serve...?
- [x] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [x] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?
>> No. 175045
[x] Questions, questions, questions!
- [x] Ask about the Pavilion in general
- [x] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [x] When did she start working here?
- [x] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[x] Serve...?
- [x] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [x] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?
>> No. 175058
[x] Questions, questions, questions!
- [x] Ask about the Pavilion in general
- [x] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [x] When did she start working here?
- [x] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[x] Serve...?
- [x] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
>> No. 175074
[x] Questions, questions, questions!
- [x] Ask about the Pavilion in general
- [x] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [x] When did she start working here?
- [x] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[x] Serve...?
- [x] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [x] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?

Sounds fun, and informative.
>> No. 175089
[x] Questions, questions, questions!
- [x] Ask about the Pavilion in general.
- [x] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [x] When did she start working here?
- [x] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[x] Serve...?
- [x] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [x] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?

All aboard.
>> No. 175105
[X] Questions, questions, questions!
- [X] Ask about the Pavilion in general.
- [X] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [X] When did she start working here?
- [X] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[X] Serve...?
- [X] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [X] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?

Sure, why not?
>> No. 175129
File 138379998343.jpg - (107.24KB , 540x720 , eca17b903f7d6be91e17f6849e6b1b83.jpg ) [iqdb]
175129
[X] Questions, questions, questions!
- [X] Ask about the Pavilion in general.
- [X] So ah, who is she anyway?
- [X] When did she start working here?
- [X] Does she really do /that/ kind of service...?
[X] Serve...?
- [X] ... Sakuya likes cards. Maybe you could play strip poker again.
- [X] The two losers have to give massages to the two winners, maybe?

- - -

Your head was swimming with questions to ask, but you felt you couldn't really monopolize Letty's time with them all. Best to just focus on the most pressing ones that came to mind.

To start things off...

"So, uhm... wh-who are you exactly? I mean, you introduced yourself, but ah, Reimu and Sakuya seem to know you and, well, erm..." You end with a weak chuckle.

Letty's eyes widen, and she gives you a quick bow. "Ah, my apologies! I am Letty Whiterock, a yuki-onna. I hibernate during the summer, spring, and fall, and come out during this time of the year. Reimu and Sakuya both met me some time ago, back during the endless winter incident. It's a pleasure to meet you, Reina."

"Letty was one of my first experiences on the investigating side of an incident. It was an excellent learning experience... sometimes the most obvious looking suspect, is not the actual culprit," Sakuya stated casually, savoring her tea.

The shrine maiden coughed before adding on, "R-right, yeah that was the spring missing incident thing. It was a while ago now. Letty was probably the most obvious suspect but... that's a story for another time. This is really the last place I'd expect to meet her again..."

Letty chuckles fondly at the memory. "That's just how things are done around here, isn't it? And now here we are, sharing tea together."

"It does seem to be that way. Meetings with acquaintances is always a pleasure... even if the location is quite unexpected."

You briefly had to wonder how it would feel to meet someone you knew in a place like this. Probably pretty shocking, if Reimu's reaction was anything to go by... still, it at least seemed like a nice, cozy place. Certainly not what you would've imagined if someone had told you what it really was.

"So uhm, how long have you been working here anyway? I mean, you seem pretty comfortable here, and the clothes..."

"Ah, you like them? You'd look good in something like this yourself, you know..." Letty straightened up a little, pushing out her chest. It looked to be even bigger than yours, and the dress really didn't cover much of her cleavage...

Your face reddened a bit in embarrassment. "E-erm, well I'm ah, clothing is kind of ah... I favor functional, casual clothing, I-I guess but uhm..."

Letty chuckled again as she relented. "Ah, you're too innocent, Reina. I was sure you'd say something like that." She took a sip of tea before continuing. "As for how long I've been here... Well, it wasn't long after that incident, actually. I used to live by myself, wandering around in the wilderness every winter, but meeting you two and your friend made me long for some companionship. Most humans are afraid of my kind, though..."

Reimu sipped her tea and rubbed her chin thoughtfully. "When you put it that way... I guess I can see why you'd decide to work in a place like this..."

"Most humans are quite afraid of youkai, after all. The natural reaction to seeing any outside the village is to run, I suppose... so working within the village might allow you to actually meet people."

The "friend" she mentioned was likely Marisa. Still, that was a pretty sensible reason to work here actually.

"What can you tell me about the Pavilion? The hostess kind of gave me an... idea based on what the coin was for and all, but..." you hesitated for a moment, taking a drink of tea, "But I guess, it's not like... you know... sleazy, or anything? Er, that sounds pretty rude of me to say..."

You were just tripping all over yourself this time, weren't you? Luckily, Letty didn't seem to mind. She'd probably dealt with people more awkward than you.

"Well, I'm hardly the only youkai who has trouble with humans. Rather than trying to find companionship the old-fashioned way, we find it more convenient to work here and have people come to us. The prices for entry are quite high, so most of our customers turn out to be fine gentlemen... or ladies," she added, raising her eyebrows. "We provide our customers with entertainment of all sorts. There's drinking and conversation, of course, but most of them come here for something else..."

Well, that opened up a good way to ask the most awkward question on your mind. "S-so that means you do, well... that with customers?"

Letty allowed herself another chuckle. "But of course! Why do you think we all work here in the first place, hmm~?"

"W-well, I thought maybe... the... status? And, erm, conversation, and... all those other things!"

The silver-haired maid chuckled softly. "It is not unusual for anyone - human or youkai - to want to indulge in the pleasures of the flesh, as they say. It has been common practice for centuries, after all."

"Oh, those other things are all quite enjoyable as well. But even youkai get certain urges from time to time, and there's nothing quite like getting someone nice to take care of them."

"... I feel kind of dirty just sitting here and hearing this." said Reimu with a sigh. "Never would've seen myself coming into a place like this. Maybe I need to be careful on my way out..."

"Ah, such innocence. Perhaps you'll feel differently in a few years when you start to want a man for yourself," Letty says with a smirk. She takes a moment to finish her tea before continuing. "Well, we'll be together for a while longer. Are you sure there isn't anything else you'd like to do~?"

"U-uhm, well..." you pause and stare at your cup for a moment, "Do you happen to be interested in... poker?"

"Poker, you say? It's been a while since I played cards, but I would be happy to. We should have some around here somewhere..." Letty gets up and heads to the closet, bending down to look through a box of something or other. Her thin dress outlines her curves quite clearly, and it's almost short enough to ride all the way up her thighs...

The maid casts a quick glance at you, her lips turning into a smirk. "Another game of cards? My, my you spoil me today. I wasn't aware you were so keen on losing, Reina."

"Always the confident one, huh Sakuya?" commented Reimu with a small frown, "Maybe with a fourth player, you won't do so well."

You cast your gaze away from Letty's exposed thighs, focusing intently on your tea instead. "So, erm, for reasons of the game and all, ah... how many articles of clothing are you wearing anyway?"

"Hmm?" Letty straightened up, deck of cards in hand. "Ah, I'm only wearing three at the moment."

"Only three... that does place Letty at quite the disadvantage." comments Sakuya, sizing up Letty.

"Yeah, that's true... a difference of one isn't too bad, but she's only wearing half of what we've got..."

Right. There was her dress of course, and the hat, the scarf... w-wait a second, that's already three! Shouldn't she have at least five...? Unless that means she... wasn't...

"If you only have three... nothing underneath?" offered Reimu.

Letty anwers with a wink. "It gets in the way of business." Walking back over, she took her seat on the cushion again and set the deck down in front of you. It looked a lot fancier than the one Reimu had, with each card made from carefully-treated paper and bearing a hand-drawn illustration.

Taking the deck of cards gave you a way to focus your rattled mind for the moment. Letty's lack of clothing would really place her at a distinct disadvantage, which wasn't very fair... this was after all a game of fun, after all! An obvious solution was to just have everyone strip down to three now, but that sounded a bit too embarrasing...

"Okay, how about to even it out... for Letty's buy-ins, she only offers one piece. For us, we have to use two, since we kind of have twice as much." You paused for a moment. "And for stakes... how about... first two to lose, have to give a massage to the others? Overall winner gets to pick who massages whom?"

Letty smiles and nods. "That sounds lovely. I can get a bit sore after a long night, but I consider myself an excellent masseuse as well. These cool hands hands of can do wonders for a tense back... and anything else you might need massaged," she says, holding up her hands for you to see. They're quite pale, but they seem pretty soft as well.

"A professional massage... that would be quite the reward. Getting to defeat Reimu and Reina again would be a nice bonus as well," teased Sakuya with a wink.

"There you go, declaring yourself the victor off the bat again... I want that massage a lot more than you do!"

Well, at least everyone was able to relax and have fun. That was always a plus. Still, limiting yourself to essentially three articles of clothing... this was going to be a potentially quick game, even with a point system. You had already been beaten once, and you really didn't want to lose again!

- - -

Clothing and a massage on the line!
[ ] Victory had to be yours!
- [ ] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
[ ] A massage would be nice, but this was a game for fun.
[ ] You had never given out a massage before, it might be kind of fun...
[ ] Other

This update brought to you by me and the Lotus Pavilion's creator.
>> No. 175132
[X] Victory had to be yours!
- [X] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
- [X] More sake, perhaps?
>> No. 175134
[ ] Victory had to be yours!
- [ ] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
>> No. 175137
[x] Victory had to be yours!
- [x] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
>> No. 175140
[x] Victory had to be yours!
- [x] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...

How long before she meets a certain winemaker then?
>> No. 175144
[x] Victory had to be yours!
- [x] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...

Let's get that massage. This is a "house of pleasure" in every meaning, and a good massage can be just a nice as that. (Sometimes even better.)
>> No. 175146
[X] Victory had to be yours!
-[X] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
-[X] More sake, perhaps?
>> No. 175148
[X] Victory had to be yours!
- [X] Maybe if you could find a way to distract Sakuya...
>> No. 175187
>>175174
New thread!
>> No. 186426
Story went downhill when it turned into Reina's slut adventures.