[x] Ask one of the villagers for the location.
That’s right. Someone here should know the way, right? Gulping, you look around, glancing at each of the people passing by. But... who should you ask? Your old apprehension is returning again, and the fact that you’re wearing… what you’re wearing right now doesn’t exactly help you build confidence.
Helplessly, you continue to look around, but you fail to speak out to anyone as they pass by. Frowning, you scurry forward, only to bump into someone as you frantically search about.
“Ah... I’m so-,“ you begin, but you quickly stop yourself, remembering to talk in a higher voice. “I mean… I’m sorry,” you say, looking up at the man you’d bumped into.
“It’s alright,” the man says dismissively, turning to go about his way.
“Um, wait!” you call after him. He turns and looks at you curiously. “Do you… um, do you know where the medicine kiosk from… from Eientei is…?”
“Uh, yeah, I know where it is,” the man says, though his face seemed to instantly sour. “Why? Are you sick or something?”
“Huh? N-no, not really…”
“Look, if you need medicine, my family’s pharmacy is just as good, you know!” the man says with sudden fervor, placing his hands on both of your shoulders to pull you in closer as you let out a sudden gasp. “Those youkai rabbits can’t be trusted! I mean, sure people say that their medicine is effective, but ours are just as good!”
“Everyone thinks it’s so great that they go around distributing medicine to households, but don’t let them fool you! They’re just trying to trick you into buying from them!” he says excitedly, shaking you by the shoulders. “Look, if you come to our pharmacy instead, we’ll match their price!”
“In fact, since you’re so cute,” he raves with the same amount of passion as before, licking his lips. “I’ll give you a discount, even! So come on!” As he says this, he leans in even closer than before, narrowing his eyes as if trying to intimidate you into doing as he says.
You can’t take anymore. You panic, surprising the man by shoving him down to the ground and quickly hurrying away from him. As you scuttle away, you hear the man calling after you.
“Hey, wait, come back!”
You don’t stop running until you’re a good distance away from where you started. Whew. That was scary. Some people can just get a little too overboard about their job, can’t they…?
As you let out a breath of relief, you hear the caw of a crow somewhere above you. Looking up, you see a small crow staring at you from the roof of a nearby building. As you return its gaze, it flutters away, stopping at the roof of another building.
You follow its trail, and each time, the crow flies away before landing elsewhere, presumably leading you to where you need to go, you hope.
Sure enough, the crow lands for the final time on top of a rather shabby looking building before taking flight again, this time into the open sky. Taking a deep breath, you open the door and step inside.
“It’s close to the end of winter, so I want everyone to remember to check the households for their medicine boxes when spring arrives,” a commanding voice is issued from inside the building. “… Hey, quit playing around with those boxes! Are you listening to me?”
You peer inside cautiously. Standing at a counter with an exasperated look on her face was the tall rabbit from Eientei. Um… if you remember right, her name was Reisen, though she was called something else when you first saw her…
Also present in the room were several of the shorter, childish rabbits. A few of them were tossing around a small container to each other, others were running around in the rather limited space within the room, and a few more were playing around inside a large cardboard box.
“They never listen to me…” you hear Reisen mutter, frustrated. As you step a little further inside, her gaze turns to you, and for just a second, your eyes meet hers’. “Oh. A customer.”
“Um… hello,” you greet. You know that she probably doesn’t remember you well enough to recognize you right now, but you still feel a little anxious.
“Excuse the other rabbits,” she says to you, reaching down and placing an enormous knapsack on the counter. “What can I help you with?”
“Um… I want to buy medicine,” you say. You’re not sure if you’re imagining it or not, but you think you can hear a faint humming coming from the inside of your head.
“Yes, that is usually why people come here,” a voice whispers into your ears. Or was it a whisper? You’re sure that it was Reisen who spoke to you, though, but it’s not like she’s standing next to you. You shake your head to clear the weird buzzing in your ears.
But now the room seems to be spinning around. It’s disorienting. You feel like if you took a step forward, you’d start falling up. Even the figure of the youkai rabbit in front of you seems to be swerving around, dividing into three…
get out of my head
“Ow!” you hear a sharp cry of pain, and at the same time, the disorientation stops. Everything feels normal now. Reisen was still standing, rubbing her eyes with the back of her hands. “Ouch…” she moans, opening one eye and pointing towards one of the smaller rabbits. “Hey, could you get me the eye drops?”
The little rabbit she pointed to reluctantly stops playing in the cardboard box, fetching a small vial and handing it over to Reisen, who placed a drop of the clear liquid in each eye. “Sorry about that,” she apologizes as she bottles the small vial up, placing it to the side while wiping at her eyes. “Anyway, what do you need?”
Shaking your head again, you produce from your dress the list of things Miss Aya recommended for you to get, as well as the small wallet she had lent you to buy them with. You hand the list over to Reisen.
“Okay, we have all that,” she says, looking over the list and rummaging around in the knapsack. Soon, she locates and retrieves several little bottles and containers, handing them to you in a brown paper bag. “Here you go.”
“Thank you,” you say, handing her the appropriate amount of money. But wow, Miss Aya sure was accurate about the cost of the medicine. She’d given you just enough to buy everything.
A few days later, you were mercifully back in your regular attire, resting at the tengu headquarters after a satisfactory dinner. Having nothing better to do, you decided to play shogi with Miss Momizi.
“Ah, are you sure you want to place that piece there?” she says teasingly as you deliberate on where to place your lion. Since it was a pretty powerful piece, you really couldn’t afford to lose it too quickly…
“You’re bluffing,” you say, although you aren’t sure. Miss Momizi simply smiles in response, making you feel even more reluctant to play out that move.
“Ah, Momi, Miki, there you two are!” Miss Aya suddenly joins the two of you, sitting at the side of the shogi board, a small paper packet in hand. “Those pictures are finally developed.”
“Those pictures?” Miss Momizi raises an eyebrow. “What are you referring to, Miss Shameimaru?”
“Ah, wait! You don’t mean…!” you quickly object, but it’s too late. Miss Aya pulls out several photographs from the packet, laying them out on the shogi board.
“Tada! I think they came out pretty well,” she says shamelessly.
“Is that…?” Miss Momizi inspects the pictures closer, and then looks at you. Of course, you’re included in all of those pictures, from that small little incident a few days ago in the village. You had no idea she was taking pictures of you even as you were walking about the village. “Oh wow, he really does look like a…” Miss Momizi catches herself from talking any further, clearing her throat with a cough. “I mean, did you force him to do this Miss Shameimaru?”
“Huh? No way~! Miki agreed to do this, didn’t you, Miki?” she says, wrapping an arm around your shoulder and pulling you closer. Spitefully, you remain silent, looking away.
“Now, what’re you all looking at here?” a gruff voice makes all three of you jump, and Miss Aya hurries to stuff the photos back into the packet as the old man Ogata enters sight, sitting down at the other side of the shogi board.
“Nothing, nothing!” Miss Aya quickly says.
Master Ogata snorts, obviously unconvinced but not willing to pry any further. Instead, he turns to Miss Momizi and asks her. “The border’s reached its one-hundred and twentiethed year now, hasn’t it?”
“Eh? Ah, yes, I believe so,” she responds. Master Ogata looks satisfied by the answer.
“Why? Is something happening?” you ask.
“Hm? Maybe so, maybe not, who knows,” he says in that usual roundabout manner. “Oh, playing shogi, are you?” he says, taking notice of the game board between you and Miss Momizi. “Well, keep going then, kid. Show me what you know about strategy.”
You shrug, and pick your lion piece back up. Again, you make to place it in the same place you were going to earlier, but you deliberate again as the old man speaks out in his rough voice.
“You sure you want to move that there?” he asks you, placing a hand on his chin.
… Damn it.
It’s closer. Closer closer closer closer closer closer closer.
It’s going to catch you. Going to catch you soon. What will happen when it does?
 Left. Native Gods.
 Right. Sibling bonds.