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As one of the few retainers of the honorable Clan Miare, you are beholden to a number of responsibilities. These range from common chores - cleaning, shopping, or delivering tea when called for - to slightly more specialized tasks, such as the regular maintenance and updating of the clan's archives.

You were a scholar, once. To be precise, you were…

>A naturalist, fond of exploring the great outdoors. You've developed some skill in herbology and tracking as a result and can work your way around even the more fantastical creatures that roam the land. (Practical knowledge and a lay of the land have earned you respect and success. You know how to deal with trouble, and not just through violence.)

>An accountant, bookkeeper and master analyst of the clan finances. The vagaries of fortune are an open book to you; in another life, you'd have amassed a fortune to rival nations. (Problems that can be solved with money aren't problems. Don't let Reimu get her hands on you.)

>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)

All of Miare's retainers are held to a certain standard of education–part of why the estate remains so woefully understaffed.

Such was your life in the Human Village of Gensoukyo. Mild labor, familiar scrolls, and the occasional guest lecture at the local school whenever Miss Keine called for it and you had the time, which was not often.

Then the Madame announced her pregnancy, and suddenly what few hours you had to yourself vanished into thin air.

Of course, it's not as if you minded. If anything, the thought of a new generation for Clan Miare brings a smile to your face. The Master and Madame had been kind to you, what with being born into their service (courtesy of your mother, grandfather, and several following greats). They had often struggled for their own child, and no few nights had passed where your mother prayed for their success. When she passed, that banner fell upon you…

>Though you've never been particularly religious, despite everything. You acknowledge their existence and might, but dedicated worship to such whimsical beings leaves you discomfited. (A rationalist at heart. You can keep a cool head no matter what, but you might come off a bit cold.)

>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
A Touhou Quest. The candle that burns twice as bright lasts half as long. How will you keep it lit?
>>
>>5605904
>A naturalist, fond of exploring the great outdoors. You've developed some skill in herbology and tracking as a result and can work your way around even the more fantastical creatures that roam the land. (Practical knowledge and a lay of the land have earned you respect and success. You know how to deal with trouble, and not just through violence.)
>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)

>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)
>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)

>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)
>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>An accountant, bookkeeper and master analyst of the clan finances. The vagaries of fortune are an open book to you; in another life, you'd have amassed a fortune to rival nations. (Problems that can be solved with money aren't problems. Don't let Reimu get her hands on you.)
>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>A naturalist, fond of exploring the great outdoors. You've developed some skill in herbology and tracking as a result and can work your way around even the more fantastical creatures that roam the land. (Practical knowledge and a lay of the land have earned you respect and success. You know how to deal with trouble, and not just through violence.)
>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
>>5605904
>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact. You've got an artist's heart and an open mind; the village children love your stories, and if a few youkai drop by every now and then… Well, no harm, no foul. (A deft tongue and generous soul have won the hearts of many, youkai and human alike.)
>Though you've never been particularly religious, despite everything. You acknowledge their existence and might, but dedicated worship to such whimsical beings leaves you discomfited. (A rationalist at heart. You can keep a cool head no matter what, but you might come off a bit cold.)
>>
>>5605904

>A naturalist, fond of exploring the great outdoors. You've developed some skill in herbology and tracking as a result and can work your way around even the more fantastical creatures that roam the land. (Practical knowledge and a lay of the land have earned you respect and success. You know how to deal with trouble, and not just through violence.)

>Which you took to with fervor. You've had plenty of close scrapes in your life; without the blessings and protections of the living gods, you'd likely be in line for the Yama's judgment by now. (Sincerity shines through in you. There's a strength to such innocence, though it does have its own drawbacks.)
>>
Cultural Historian and Religious locked in. Thanks for waiting.
>>
>Artist’s heart
>Deft tongue
>Innocent sincerity
We’re going to be a poet, aren’t we?
Woe be unready hearts, the poet is coming!
>>
>>5606754
Let's hope no-one kills us and bury us under a tree
>>
>>5606754
>In Gensokyo
>Youkai are a common sight
>We write about them
>>
>A cultural historian, knowledgeable in both myth and fact.
>Which you took to with fervor.

The news of the latest addition to the Hiede House spread like a summer fire, though such was to be expected of a Great Family. Once, after a session of telling stories to the village children, a young woman wearing a charming little tokin pulled you aside to ask about the soon-to-be heir.

"I'm Shameimaru Aya, of the Bunbunmaru Report! You can call me Aya. You're a retainer of the Hieda, aren't you?"

She had been rather excitable, red eyes sparkling as she cradled a curious little box-shaped contraption. When you had asked about it, she had been all too happy to explain its use.

"This? It's a camera! Here, here, let me show you how it works…"

You grinned in reflex as she pointed it at you, and there was a sudden flash of light. Then, while you were busy blinking the spots out of your eyes, she passed the resulting "photo" to you.

The smile on your face stretched even wider as you saw yourself reflected upon its surface. Fascinating!

In exchange for the fresh experience, you imparted upon the woman a condensed history of the honorable Hieda family and its esteemed founder, Hieda no Are–author of the Kojiki and a historian of great renown. As the matter aligned with your own scholarly discipline, you may have been a touch too excited to speak of the great founder; after the first hour and a half of your lecture, Aya had begged off, citing "more scoops to pursue." The woman gave you her shaky thanks, accepting a cheerful goodbye in return before dizzily staggering off towards the village exit.

A shame. You'd have liked to speak more with the disguised tengu; it wasn't often that yokai came to the Human Village, barring rare exceptions like Miss Kamishirasawa or Miss Tatara. There were thousands of questions you had yet to ask her, like why all tengu favored outfits so similar to that of mountain hermits.

Ah, well. There was always next time.

Days passed in the span of seconds, and months flew by in minutes. In all the excitement, it seemed as though between one moment and the next, the Ninth Child of Miare had been born.

[1/2]
>>
Tragically, neither the Master nor Madame were very good at coming up with names. Or maybe they felt obligated to continue the tradition of numerically naming the Children of Miare. Either way, thus came about Hieda no Akyuu, and with her, a profound joy that could crack even the iron facade which the Master so frequently wore.

The Madame's skin was slick with sweat, hair plastered to her scalp in thin strands. Dark bags lined her eyes, and her slim frame stood out all the more when compared to her husband's stockier form–but as she cradled her newborn daughter to her chest, the light of her motherly smile easily washed away the pains of childbirth.

In contrast, though, the Master wore an expression you could only describe as bittersweet.

Akyuu no Hieda did not cry as she suckled from her mother's breasts.

>From the moment of her birth, an overwhelming weight could be felt in her gaze. (She retains more memories from her previous incarnations, but her health declines further.)

>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)

[2/2]
>>
>>5606868
>The woman gave you her shaky thanks, accepting a cheerful goodbye in return before dizzily staggering off towards the village exit.
Aya, defeated. A rare achievement indeed.

>>5606871
>>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)
>>
>>5606871
>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)
Kek, we Nerded Aya off
>>
>>5606871
>From the moment of her birth, an overwhelming weight could be felt in her gaze. (She retains more memories from her previous incarnations, but her health declines further.)

Expected heartbreak and the weight of ages, I cannot wait. How does someone so old, yet human deal with someone so exuberant (Us)?

Was one of her reincarnation a guy?
>>
>>5606922
Yes, it's presumed that she has had both male and female reincarnations. I'm mostly going off the wiki for stuff like this with the occasional reread of Perfect Memento In Strict Sense, but also taking some very minor AU liberties because I'm not familiar with the entirety of 2hou canon because I'm not insane enough to try and consume all of it.
>>
>>5606871
>>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)
>>
>>5607097
>but also taking some very minor AU liberties because I'm not familiar with the entirety of 2hou canon because I'm not insane enough to try and consume all of it.
Considering the in universe records about Gensokyo are written by Akyuu (who will take bribes to falsify the Gensokyo Chronicle), Aya (who thinks making things up is a perfectly reasonable journalistic practice), and Marisa (who responded to being told that she’s going to hell for lying too much by saying she’s never told a lie in her life), coming up with your own take on things is to be expected.
>>
>>5607128
>saying she’s never told a lie in her life
The sheer audacity is awe-inspiring.

I hope our cultural historian employs an instrument when telling stories. It seems oddly fitting, considering the setting. Plus, it's a tool to beguile all, from gods to men to beasts, none can resist a musical poet; at least, that's what I gather from myths and folktales I've read.
>>
>>5606871
>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)
>>
>>5606871
>From the moment of her birth, an overwhelming weight could be felt in her gaze. (She retains more memories from her previous incarnations, but her health declines further.)
Akyuu will be fine if she has us to look after her.
>>
>>5606871
>>From the moment of her birth, an overwhelming weight could be felt in her gaze. (She retains more memories from her previous incarnations, but her health declines further.)
>>
>>5606871
>>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was–a quiet, reserved girl, though one nonetheless curious about the world. (Retains only the memories related to the Gensoukyo Chronicle.)
>>
Tallying. Sorry for the delay, had a busy night.

Quiet and Reserved wins.
>>
>But you later came to understand that this was simply normal for who she was.

And so the story begins.



You look down at the toddler before you, a blankly bemused grimace set upon your face.

Akyuu giggles as you peel off your summer robes, freshly stained with urine. Her laughter is wispy, almost gasping; you'd think she was asthmatic if it weren't for the fact that the village doctor had given her a… relatively clean bill of health.

There wasn't anything wrong with her that wasn't supposed to be there, at least.

Next to you, Kumi - a chef in service to the clan - lets out a rasping chortle. The elderly woman passes a fresh cloth diaper to you, her hands steady and firm despite the wrinkles and scars that network the skin.

"Come now, boy. Tie it like I showed you." She raises a hand as if to pat you on the back, then visibly decides against it, letting out another laugh as her arm drops.

A sigh escapes you as you go through practiced motions, raising the Hieda heiress' pudgy legs up to more easily wrap the cloth around her waist. To her credit, the girl doesn't try to kick. Instead, she simply gazes at you, amethyst eyes sparkling with curiosity.

The temptation is too strong to resist! You sigh again and poke her in the cheek, smiling despite yourself as your charge giggles, tiny hands wrapped around your finger.

Kumi nods approvingly. "Right then. Seems you've got the hang of things. I'll set aside some fresh clothes for you, then I'm off to prepare lunch."

Without waiting for a response, the woman departs, leaving you to glance helplessly at her retreating back.

[1/3]
>>
This isn't something you're used to. To say you feel out of your depth would be an understatement. A storyteller you might be, but there's a sizable difference between interacting with children as part of an audience and actually taking care of them, much less someone as young as Akyuu.

Not for the first time, you wonder why such an important role was thrust upon you.

Of course, you understood the reasoning behind the delegation itself. Though the Madame was reluctant to part - not due to any particular distrust of you, but simply the result of a mother wanting to be with her daughter - the Master had reasoned that as well-behaved as Akyuu may be, she was still a toddler in body and mind. As the current state of your robes would suggest, fragile paperwork had no business being in the same room as her.

Not yet, at least. There would be plenty of that in her future, as the eventual author of the 9th Gensoukyo Chronicle–and to better prepare her for that role, both the Master and Madame had to lay the necessary groundwork.

You were more than willing to aid them in their efforts, of course. Why, part of the reason you had taken up storytelling was to keep your mind honed and ready. When the time came to put your skills to use, you would be prepared!

It came as a bit of a shock to you, then, when you were told that you would be reassigned as Akyuu's caretaker.

Though you didn't quite protest, you couldn't help but ask why. After all, there were obviously superior options already present: in addition to Kumi, the Hieda also employed her daughter, Tsubaki, as the groundskeeper. Citing experience with the task, both women had served as midwives during Akyuu's birth, whereas you had waited outside with the Master until given the go-ahead to enter.

In response to your question, the Master had patted you on the back, a solemn expression on his face. "The reward for good work is more work."

[2/3]
>>
Surveying Akyuu's bedroom, you cast a helpless glance at the leftmost wall, where a series of honeycombed shelves proudly present row after row of decorated scrolls, each containing various myths and paintings you had personally prepared.

Apparently, word had gotten back to your employers regarding your presence in the village. Being surrounded by so many children left a bit of an impression, not to mention your guest lectures at the Hieda Temple School.

Ah, well. It means they trust you. When put like that…

You have to admit it feels rather nice.



Soon after Akyuu's birth, a letter came from the Hakurei Shrine, delivered by a miko-in-training. It seems they're offering to throw a party in celebration of Hieda no Are's successful reincarnation.

>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)

>Unfortunately, you missed it, on account of a minor mishap with some fairies. "I don't suppose you girls would be willing to let me go if I gave you some sweets? …Only if it's ice cream, huh?" (Misty Lake)

[3/3]
>>
>>5609487
>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
>>
>>5609487
>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
>>
>>5609487
>Unfortunately, you missed it, on account of a minor mishap with some fairies. "I don't suppose you girls would be willing to let me go if I gave you some sweets? …Only if it's ice cream, huh?" (Misty Lake)
Someone can rescue us later I suppose.
>>
>>5609487
>>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
>>
>>5609487
>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
>>
>>5609487
>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
Cute characterisation.
>>
>>5609487
>>You decided to attend. "Miss Reimu, was it? You must have walked quite some distance. Come, have some tea while I bring this to the Master." (Hakurei Shrine)
>>
>You decided to attend.

The girl at the front door is a wiry little thing, clad in the two-tone robes typical of a miko. Wordlessly, she looks up at you, lips twitching into a small frown as she raises a hand to wipe away the sweat on her brow. In the distance, unseen cicadas drone on, as if to further reinforce the overbearing summer sun.

The young miko's gaze slides over to the little bundle slung across your chest. As if prompted, within the blanket cocoon a sleeping Akyuu lets out a quiet snore, her chubby face pressed against your robes.

"Hello there," you murmur. "You're…?"

The girl seems oddly familiar. Of course, there's only one shrine of any real note in the area that you know of…

She beats you to the punch, dipping into a practiced bow before handing you a letter. "Hakurei Reimu. I'm here on behalf of the Hakurei Shrine."

Yes, you remember now. You've seen her performing grocery runs on occasion; she rarely stops by to listen to your tales, but every now and then she'll linger for a minute or two.

Nodding in reciprocation, you accept the envelope, tucking it into your sleeves. "A pleasure, Miss Reimu. You must have walked quite some distance. Please, come in. This won't take long."

At your offer, a quiet sigh of relief leaves the girl. She seems all too happy to step in after you and escape the heat. You guide her to an empty room, chuckling a little as she sprawls herself across the tatami floor.

"I'll get some tea prepared for you. Are you alright with barley?"

She nods wordlessly, a thankful look flashing across her face. In short order, you retrieve a glazed teapot and two ceramic cups filled with chilled tea.

Reimu jolts as her fingertips touch the porcelain, hazel eyes widening in surprise. "Cold!" She snatches it up and presses it against her cheek, stoic expression cracking into a smile.

You hum in response, eyes creasing with a grin of your own. "Isn't it nice? You can thank the kappa. Remarkable little fellows; they've made something called a 'refrigerator,' and it can…"

Your voice trails off as the smile slips from Reimu's face. She sets down the cup, looking into the dark ripples spreading across its surface.

"Kappa, huh."

She lifts the cup to her lips, visibly subdued. It takes you a moment, but… Ah, that's right. They're a family of youkai exterminators. It would make sense for her to feel a little unsure about benefiting from them.

>Be that as it may… "As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless. The ones that trade in the Village haven't done anything wrong."

>Let it lie. This isn't the kind of thing that can be changed with a single conversation, and considering her position, she'd be obligated to warn you to keep away from youkai.

>Write-in?
>>
>>5611866
>Let it lie. This isn't the kind of thing that can be changed with a single conversation, and considering her position, she'd be obligated to warn you to keep away from youkai.
>>
>>5611866
>Let it lie. This isn't the kind of thing that can be changed with a single conversation, and considering her position, she'd be obligated to warn you to keep away from youkai.
>>
>>5611866
>>Be that as it may… "As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless. The ones that trade in the Village haven't done anything wrong."
>>
>>5611866
>>Let it lie. This isn't the kind of thing that can be changed with a single conversation, and considering her position, she'd be obligated to warn you to keep away from youkai.
>>
>>5611866
>Be that as it may… "As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless. The ones that trade in the Village haven't done anything wrong."
>”Despite their eccentricities and occasional hostility, even Youkai seem to appreciate stories. It certainly makes dealing with them easier for a simple historian like myself.”
>>
>>5611866
>>5612118
As a note, I’m not admonishing Reimu, and if she brings up that we should stay away from Youkai then I would agree with her. They’re often stronger than people. That makes them dangerous and Reimu’s job necessary. But Reimu can’t be everywhere, nor would she want to be. We all learn how to keep the peace ourselves to the best of our abilities, and ours is with engagement. We’re good at talking after all.
>>
>>5611866
>Be that as it may… "As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless. The ones that trade in the Village haven't done anything wrong."
>”Despite their eccentricities and occasional hostility, even Youkai seem to appreciate stories. It certainly makes dealing with them easier for a simple historian like myself.”
>"But the hostile ones can be truly despicable. Gensokyo is fortunate to have exterminator such as the Hakurei to protect us."
>>
>>5612123
Worth noting that she's a child right now, so strictly speaking she doesn't have much in the way of direct exposure to youkai yet (beyond obvious exceptions like Yukari). She's still got her broken cheat power of "floating" which is why she's allowed to go out and do chores on her own, but she's very much still in training. They all start somewhere.
One day she'll become the slacker we all know and love... Or will she!? Depends on the degree you interact with her and the accompanying choices. In another world, the Hakurei Shrine might have even become financially stable.

Yes, this also means that Marisa is currently still living in the original Kirisame Shop along with Rinnosuke.
>>
>>5612149
So what I’m hearing… is that we have a kid here in need of our stories. Doubly so as she lives at a shrine so our own religious bent makes her more endearing!
>>
>>5612279
If we aren't careful, we are going to end up overworked trying to be the best uncle ever to too many people.
Don't know how much we can help Reimu with poverty since we aren't an accountant though.
>>
>>5612290
Eh, Akyuu is our actual ward. Reimu would just be swinging by and hearing stories like other kids.

Though it would be funny if Reimu does visit semi-frequently to admonish us later in life. Not because of Youkai or overwork, but because we don’t charge people for our stories.
>>
>>5611866
>Be that as it may… "As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless. The ones that trade in the Village haven't done anything wrong."
>”I understand the concerns you feel about youkai. All I ask is that you remember that they are individuals just as we humans are, and that you not hold the actions of some youkai against all.”
>>
So far it looks like the "Not all youkai" vote is leading by one, but with a lot of degrees of variation. In cases like this I'll try and combine their common aspects. I'll post my summarized understanding of the vote for you guys to confirm in a bit.
>>
>>5612429
General idea seems to be that as a storyteller, we are not blind to the risks, but nor do we allow ourselves to be blinded by those same risks.
>>
>>5612429
>>5612444
And that as a storyteller, we use more words to communicate this idea than is probably needed.

At least she should see we’re being sincere.
>>
>>5611866
>>Let it lie. This isn't the kind of thing that can be changed with a single conversation, and considering her position, she'd be obligated to warn you to keep away from youkai.
Never trust even one
>>
>>5612444
Yeah, not all Yokai are bad, but some still are.
And that's when you call the ghosts busters
>>
Bleurgh. Came back to check on the thread because I just finished my last lecture for the day, but there's a tie...
Apologies, >>5612465. Normally I'd roll for a breaker, but I've already written up a fairly sizable draft. Hopefully a fast update will make up for it.
>>
>Be that as it may… (Write-in ver.)

The topic of youkai is one that you find difficult to discuss with your fellow villagers.

It's a sensitive one, to say the least.

Fairies and phantoms - the two most common types of youkai, found all across Gensoukyo - are scarcely better than pests. Though largely mindless, swarms of phantoms can unduly influence people, even possessing them on occasion. And while one can communicate with fairies, their reputation as pranksters is well-deserved.

Whether they act out of true malice or not is irrelevant. You have known farmers forced to endure long winters due to ruined crops. Families with children spirited away for months, if not years–and that's assuming they get to see them returned at all. So on and so forth.

The eight preceding Gensoukyo Chronicles are dedicated to the eternal struggle between youkai and mankind. No matter how optimistic you might be, as a retainer of the Hieda and a historian yourself, you cannot ignore the facts.

The world beyond the village walls is not one meant for men.

No matter how similar their outward appearance, there exists a fundamental difference between youkai and humans.

And yet…

They are people all the same.

[1/5]
>>
Drinking your tea is a bit awkward. You have to consciously angle your arm so as to avoid bumping against the sleeping Akyuu. It requires a delicate balance, and you are far from athletic.

Still, you manage.

"As far as youkai go, the kappa are largely harmless."

Key word being "largely." Sometimes their experiments go awry, and… Not worth mentioning, you think.

An attentive Reimu raises an eyebrow at your sudden pause. With a wave and a cough, you continue speaking. "At the very least, the ones that trade in the village haven't done anything wrong."

"The… the poe-ten-shul, is there, though," she argues. A little grin flits across your face as she sounds the word out.

"Of course," you allow, nodding. "But if we allow ourselves to be held back by the possibility of something going wrong, we will never see success in the things that matter."

Reimu frowns at that, her back straightening as the two of you begin to discuss a topic that goes back further than either of you could ever hope to imagine. Falling into well-worn instincts, you set down your cup and raise a lecturing finger.

“I understand you might have some reservations regarding contact between humans and youkai, Miss Reimu. The vast majority of the Human Village shares this perspective, with only a small percentage of them willing to entertain the youkai. Reluctantly at that, I might add."

"It's dangerous," she states. Plain and simple. She's not wrong, of course - but there's always more to be said.

You shrug. "Yes–I can't deny that the Village would be safer if we barred all youkai from entering. But would things truly be better? It's hard to say. If we did exclude them, though, it'd be much harder for me to enjoy a cool cup of barley tea on a hot summer day."

Reimu unsubtly rolls her eyes as you wink at her, raising your cup in a silent cheer. Wetting your tongue, you continue in a gentler tone.

[2/5]
>>
“If I may be so presumptuous… I hope that one day, we may bridge the - heh - boundary that exists between the two. I consider some youkai to be very good friends of mine, and I would be very sad if I had to stop meeting them. Why, they tend to be some of my best listeners! I can always count on them for a good tip.”

Reaching into your pocket, you take out a well-worn coin pouch. Covered in a myriad of shoddy patches, it nonetheless makes a delightful jingling sound.

With a focus you tend to only see on grown men in the gambling dens, Reimu's eyes lock onto the pouch, unerringly tracking its movement before finally snapping back to your face.

Uh.

Okay, then. She likes money. Duly noted.

You'll have to remember to mail her something for the New Years.

With deliberate care, you stuff your coin pouch back into the recesses of your pocket, clearing your throat before continuing as if nothing happened.

"But of course, I'd be remiss to overlook the many, many cases where human and youkai interaction have led to… less than stellar results. Beyond my own academic interest in the matter, I imagine few people would be particularly happy, if, say, the oni were to one day reappear."

The miko scowls at the mention of the drunkard ogres, but seemingly accepts your concession. Reimu reluctantly sits back down. Though the young miko still wears a look of mild discontent, she seems to be willing to let slide your pro-youkai sentiments.

Exhaling lightly, you lean over the table, reaching out a hand to playfully ruffle her hair.

At your touch, a little squeak escapes her. A terrible war is fought within yourself as you resist the urge to laugh, yet you somehow manage to bravely soldier on.

"But that's exactly why we depend on the youkai exterminators–people like you, Miss Reimu."

She peers up at you. Even through the veil of her bangs, the doubt in her eyes is palpable.

"Like me…?"

"Mhm. After all, it's because of the Hakurei Clan that those of us in the Human Village can live our days in peace. For that, you have my utmost thanks."

She goes oddly still at that. Unused to praise, perhaps.

[3/5]
>>
"...You should be saying that to my mom. All I do back home is sweep the floors."

Her voice is faint. Unsure. Reluctant, almost.

Can she really believe what you're saying?

The responsibility of keeping Gensoukyo's peace is an incredible weight to place on a child's shoulders.

But… it's not an impossible one for her to bear.

Leaning back and folding your legs into a loose seiza, you bring the tea to your lips again, abandoning propriety for a brief moment.

"That, too, is an important duty. Cleanliness is divine, Miss Reimu. And besides…"

Why did you become a historian?

"...I'm sure you'll grow up to be an excellent shrine maiden."

–Simple.

To ensure that the gifts your predecessors left behind would be passed on through the generations, preserved in their entirety.

You dip your head in a polite bow, acknowledging the strength of the Hakurei.

Embarrassed, the girl before you returns her gaze to her lap, then abruptly snatches up her own cup of tea in an effort to hide her face behind its leaf-green glaze.

"...You should go deliver that letter, Mister."

–Ah! It felt like you were forgetting something!

Halfway through scrambling to your feet, you remember you're carrying Akyuu. An exasperated half-laugh leaves you as you forcibly slow down, gulping down the rest of your tea and setting off for the Master's office.

[4/5]
>>
Out of the corner of your eye, you catch a flash of Reimu's smile.



A day before the celebration at Hakurei Shrine was meant to take place, the Master and Madame had taken Akyuu off your hands. For the first time in what felt like far too long, you were free.

Honestly speaking, it's a bit odd. It didn't take long for you to get used to carrying Akyuu around the compound. Still, with nothing better to do, you took a walk around the village…

>...And nearly got bowled over as a little blonde girl came racing out of a nearby store, eyes puffy and wet with tears. A somewhat rotund, balding man came out after her, huffing and puffing. "KIRISAME MARISA! GET BACK HERE!" Unfortunately for him, she's long gone. Fortunately for you, she's a (somewhat) familiar face–you've got an idea of where she went.

>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.

>...Yet as soon as you stepped out the door, a purple-haired woman wearing a deep straw hat walked up to you. "H-hello. Would you like to buy some medicine…?" For some reason, she won't look you in the eyes. Is this…?

[5/5]
>>
>>5613067
>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.
We hold the power to enjoy pleasant conversations with Shiki Eiki. A rare feat indeed.
>>
>>5613067
>>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.
>>
I hope the direction I took the vote in was satisfactory. Still not sure if it was too preachy or not. Avoiding talking-heads syndrome without feeling too stilted was tough.
>>
>>5613087
Seems fine to me. Looks as if Reimu will at least consider our words.

Also I find it funny that we’re one of the few people who would listen to Shiki’s lectures, yet going by the vote we don’t need them.
>>
>>5613067
>...And nearly got bowled over as a little blonde girl came racing out of a nearby store, eyes puffy and wet with tears. A somewhat rotund, balding man came out after her, huffing and puffing. "KIRISAME MARISA! GET BACK HERE!" Unfortunately for him, she's long gone. Fortunately for you, she's a (somewhat) familiar face–you've got an idea of where she went.
I really want to see Eiki, but Marisa is sad. A bit hypocritical when I was worried about ending up trying to be the best uncle to everyone
>>
>>5613067
>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.
I like True Administrator remixes more than Master Spark remixes. What can I say?

>>5613087
Fine with me. Talking Heads Syndrome isn’t something I notice (and I’m not rereading to see if the text suffered from it!) and the characterizations were good.

Glad to see that little bit of pride in her may have meant something. She may still be a slacker, but maybe she’ll work harder if we’re involved.
>>
>>5613067
>>5613145
Whoops, meant Fate of Sixty Years. Both versions of the statement are true though.
>>
>>5613067
>...And nearly got bowled over as a little blonde girl came racing out of a nearby store, eyes puffy and wet with tears. A somewhat rotund, balding man came out after her, huffing and puffing. "KIRISAME MARISA! GET BACK HERE!" Unfortunately for him, she's long gone. Fortunately for you, she's a (somewhat) familiar face–you've got an idea of where she went.
Marisad
>>
>>5613067
>...Yet as soon as you stepped out the door, a purple-haired woman wearing a deep straw hat walked up to you. "H-hello. Would you like to buy some medicine…?" For some reason, she won't look you in the eyes. Is this…?
Alien
>>
>>5613169
A fresh perspective to add to the history books.
"You say the humans managed to reach the moon...!? I-incredible! And--these weapons you mentioned, what did they look like?"
>>
>>5613067
>>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.
>>
>>5613067
>>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner. With a mirror in one hand and a silver rod in the other, it was almost as if a legendary Yama had walked out of one of your mythical scrolls. "I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!" Oh. It turns out she actually is a Yama.
>>
Alright! Eiki locked in. Boy, I am going to have so much fun writing this update, you have no idea. Teacher's pet doesn't even begin to describe this. You're all about to understand the full consequences of doubling down on religious fervor like this.
>>
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>>5614633
Honestly, the vote text has had me thinking of the old Paladin - The Redemption screencap. The first two posts and the first two posts after the second anon steps in specifically.
>>
>>5614633
We are the purest boy. Actually, what's our name?
>>
>>5614649
I can fap to this, indeed.
It's not quite that far on the scale of Incorruptible Pure Pureness, it's more played for comedy than anything, but you probably could've made for a pretty tasty hermit if you hadn't ended up with the Hieda.
Here's an (unedited) snippet of what to expect. Will probably get changed up a bit in the final update.

For a moment, you feel a touch of trepidation–but your resolve firms. She's doing this for your sake, giving you an opportunity to improve yourself in the here and now so that it won't be too late for you once you must cross the Sanzu River.

As you await your (preliminary) judgment, Eiki gasps in shock.

"How could you…!?"

Your heart drops like a stone.

Did you–could it–no, but you never–

Even as confusion wracks your mind, numerous pleas and justifications threaten to spill from your lips–but your faith is what keeps you silent.

You hang your head in remorse. Whatever it is that she's found, this is no less than what you deserve.

"I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!"

Caught off guard, you look up at the Yama. She quickly stows away the mirror and takes up your hands, patting them soothingly. An indulgent, almost motherly smile crosses her face as she looks into your eyes.
>>
>>5614660
>but you probably could've made for a pretty tasty hermit if you hadn't ended up with the Hieda.
We might become a hermit anyway. Akyuu has said that she’d like to make some longer lived friends so she’ll have someone waiting for her on her next life.
>>
>...Only to be accosted by a rather exotic-looking foreigner.

Stepping into the veranda, you slide shut the paper door behind you. As you take a seat on the wooden floor, legs hanging over the steps, a shiver runs down your spine. This early in the day, the sun has yet to fully warm the air–summer or not, Gensoukyo is far from tropical.

You stare blankly into the garden beyond, gaze passing over and through the vibrant blossoms that Tsubaki so lovingly cares for.

Ah… To think of "something to care for" leaves you feeling terribly melancholic.

For today, you have found yourself out of a job.

You shut your eyes and take a breath, preparing to compose some haikus in an attempt to stir up some degree of motivation. Maybe you'll feel ready to face the day after an hour or two.

Then someone flicks your forehead.

You jerk away with a yelp, hands flying up to cover your face. As you topple backwards, a familiar, hearty laugh reaches your ears. Peering through squinted eyes, you look up to see the groundskeeper herself grinning down at you. With a sharp-toothed smile and a stalk of grass between her lips, Tsubaki - your self-styled older sister figure - cuts a domineering figure, her face shielded from the sun by a wide-brimmed hat.

A disgruntled "Ow" leaves you, but there's no real heat to your complaint. You were more surprised than anything.

Well aware of your thoughts, Tsubaki snorts, then pulls you to your feet and dusts you off. "Was going to see if you'd be of any help today, but in a mood like that, you'll just make the flowers wilt."

In lieu of a response, you gaze mournfully at the hydrangeas. Tsubaki shakes her head at the sight.

"Honestly. You'd think you were the one that gave birth to her."

You stroke your chin in mock thought. "Hm. Perhaps I did..."

Your longtime friend and fellow coworker stares at you in disbelief, then smacks you on the back. "Alright. Off with you. Go take a walk and clear your head. I can't keep listening to this nonsense."

It has been a while since you went out to your spot in the village square. Though Akyuu's health isn't the worst it could be, spending hours outdoors is a bit much to ask of someone not yet even six months old.

It's certainly better than sitting around and moping.

To brace yourself, you clap your cheeks and rise to your feet, aided in part by Tsubaki's strong grip. "Yes, yes. I suppose you have a point there. We'll only be apart for a day, after all…"

With that, you trot towards the compound gate, pausing only when Tsubaki calls after you. "Keep an eye out for any phantoms, alright? You're in no condition to handle them."

Without turning back, you raise a hand and wave in acknowledgement.

[1/5]
>>
---

You peer into the luminous eyes of the Dragon God's Statue, then crane your head back to look up at the sky.

Yep. A bright baby blue, with a few fluffy clouds drifting by.

Picturesque. Idyllic, even. Hopefully, this good weather continues. Rain tomorrow would be a terrible omen, after all… Though the farmers might not mind.

Dropping a coin into a nearby donation box, you take a stick of incense and place it into an ash-filled censer at the foot of the statue, lighting it and bowing twice.

As the fragrant scent fills your lungs, you enter a nearby bar and plop yourself down on a stool. Taking a breath to collect yourself, you hail the stall's proprietor.

"A glass, please," you call, cupping a hand around your mouth. There's a brief silence, then the sound of movement. From the back of the shop, a bearded man pushes his way into the storefront, grumbling all the while.

"Ah? Who's drinking so early in the day… Oh. It's you. Haven't seen you in a bit. Welcome back. The usual, yeah?"

He nods in greeting and rolls his shoulders, then ducks out of sight.

A sigh escapes you as you lean against the countertop, propping up your chin. Lost in your thoughts for a moment, you fail to notice the sound of someone else entering the shop.

What alerts you to their presence is a firm grip settling on your shoulder, keeping you in place even as you jolt in terror.

"Daytime drinking? I see you're in need of a lecture…"

It's a woman's voice, but not one you recognize. Out of the corner of your eye, you see the barkeep reappear. He stiffens in shock at the sight of whoever's standing behind you. Gripped by a sudden panic, he quickly slides your order across to you, then makes a bold attempt to disappear into the shadows.

The stranger leans over you, glancing into the cup and inadvertently allowing you to catch a glimpse of her profile. Deep blue eyes and dark green hair complement a sleeveless apothecary's robe, decorated with strands of gold. An engraved crown and accompanying emblem are seemingly woven into her hat, its frilled edges kept in place by a red and white bow.

Your breath catches.

A divine authority.

As you stare, a puzzled frown appears on her face as she investigates your drink. "This… doesn't seem like sake."

It takes some time for your tongue to untie itself, but you somehow manage. "Y-yes. It's milk."

[2/5]
>>
She blinks at that, turning to fix you in her sights. Your body freezes beneath the weight of her gaze…

Suddenly, the woman lets go of you, stepping back in alarm. "Oh. Oh! M-my apologies. I've made a terrible mistake." A remorseful look appears on her face, but you manage to stop the obviously-a-deity before she can go any further.

"Not a problem! Not a problem at all, honored one," you stammer out. The thought of making someone like her apologize to you has your stomach doing flips.

Her eyes soften. "Shiki Eiki, Yamaxanadu–"wait what"–but please, call me Eiki."

A Yama. One of the all-important judges of the dead stands before you.

Also the boss of your boss, says an irreverent little voice in your head. You manage to strangle it, but acknowledge its comment; this is the employer (or one of them, anyways) of Hieda no Are's many reincarnations. In exchange for their continued rebirth, the founder assists the Yama in their work, serving in death as they do in life.

You leap to your feet, nearly knocking over the stool as you offer her a deep bow. "It-it is an honor to speak with you, Lord Eiki. To what do I owe the pleasure?" You're suddenly thankful for the etiquette lessons your mother imparted upon you.

Eiki leans back, scratching her cheek in embarrassment. "My, my. People don't usually respond to me like this…"

…Eh?

Puzzled by her words, you look back up at her. "Why not?"

[3/5]
>>
The green-haired judge lets out a little cough, pouting slightly. "They don't appreciate my lectures. Even though it's for their sake..."

A deep sense of horror fills you as she speaks. The villagers are ignoring a Yama? Remorse dyes your soul; all you can do is ask for mercy on their behalf.

"A thousand pardons, honored one! They know not what they do!"

Eiki waves you off, blushing slightly. "There's no need for that. Some of them actually do listen to me." Then she straightens, a steely determination in her eyes. "But even if they didn't, I'd still continue to do my best in guiding them onto the path of virtue."

Tears well up in your eyes. "Such benevolence…!"

With all the bowing you're doing, you're actually starting to feel a little dizzy. The Yama lets out an amused sigh. "Very well, then. Since you seem willing enough… Take a seat, child. Let us discuss your sins."

With that, she pulls out an elegant hand mirror. You gasp, amazed. Though it doesn't quite resemble the paintings you've seen, it can only be one thing; the Cleansed Crystal Mirror, a divine treasure that displays the various misdeeds of any sinner caught in its reflection.

For a moment, you feel a touch of trepidation–but your resolve firms. She's doing this for your sake, giving you an opportunity to improve yourself in the here and now so that it won't be too late for you once you must cross the Sanzu River.

As you await your (preliminary) judgment, Eiki gasps in shock, the Mirror nearly slipping from her grasp.

"How could you…!?"

Your heart drops like a stone.

Did you–could it–no, but you never–

Even as confusion wracks your mind, numerous half-born pleas and justifications threaten to spill from your lips–but your faith keeps you silent.

You hang your head in remorse. Whatever it is that she's found, this is no less than what you deserve.

"I-incredible. Your soul… It's even purer than that of a child!"

Caught off guard, you look up at the Yama. She quickly stows away the mirror to take up your hands in her own, soothing you to the best of her ability. An indulgent, almost motherly smile crosses her face as she looks into your eyes.

"Wonderful. There's still room for improvement, of course, or you'd be a Celestial by now, but you truly are a virtuous one."

The smile dims somewhat as Eiki lets out a sorrowful sigh. Your chest tightens painfully, as if your heart were being squeezed by an oni. What could possibly be troubling her?

[4/5]
>>
"Ah, but I suppose this means there isn't much for me to lecture you on…"

"I-I would still like to listen to your lessons!"

As soon as you blurt out your feelings, an immediate sense of regret hits you. To ask for her aid when there are others who need it more… How selfish of you.

"N-no," you mutter, cringing away. "Nevermind. Forgive me, Lord Eiki, I–"

The Yama laughs, a soft, warm sound. "Have no fear, child. I understand. While I cannot dedicate my time in the surface world to you, I hope that all may learn from my words. You are no exception to this."

Somehow, despite the tears streaming down your face, you manage to squeeze out a choked "Thank you."

Ah. Your faith truly is its own reward.

Eiki rubs your back in small circles, bringing to mind memories of your own mother. "Now, now. Don't cry so much…"

A regretful sigh escapes her as she looks out the door, studying the shadow cast by row Dragon God's Statue. With a little sniffle, you let go as soon as Eiki begins to pull away. She glances at you apologetically, biting her lip.

"I'm afraid my lunch break is almost over. I'll have to go back to the Netherworld soon, but I really must finish my task…"

You wipe your face with a dusty sleeve. "P-please. Don't let me inconvenience you."

She rises, stepping outside–then turns to face you, a considering look on her face.

"Actually–maybe you can help. Would you happen to know where the Hieda House is located? I came to verify there weren't any issues with the Miracle of Miare's resurrection… Oh, it seems you do."

You grin heartily at her. "Absolutely."



Along the way, it struck you that Eiki might be interested in attending the party at Hakurei Shrine tomorrow. You happily extended an invitation to her…

>...But she had to turn you down. "Now that the Child of Miare is no longer with us, our workload has gotten that much harder to handle. Not to mention, I… don't tend to mingle too well with parties."

>...And somehow managed to convince her. "Oh, alright. Just for a little bit, okay? I won't be able to stay for long, so don't get your hopes up. You said 'Hakurei,' yes? Goodness, has it really been 60 years?"



The bartender shakes his head and stares at the cup of lukewarm milk still sitting on the counter, wholly untouched.

"Well, at least he remembered to pay."

[5/5]
>>
>>5614699
>Shiki: It’s not perfect, but considering what I deal with all day I’ll take it.

>>5614703
>...But she had to turn you down. "Now that the Child of Miare is no longer with us, our workload has gotten that much harder to handle. Not to mention, I… don't tend to mingle too well with parties."
>>
>>5614655
>name
I'm saving that for when Akyuu says her first words.
>>
>>5614703
>...And somehow managed to convince her. "Oh, alright. Just for a little bit, okay? I won't be able to stay for long, so don't get your hopes up. You said 'Hakurei,' yes? Goodness, has it really been 60 years?"
Eiki at a party, that's a sight to see
>>
>>5614710
Very appropriate
>>
>>5614703
>...And somehow managed to convince her. "Oh, alright. Just for a little bit, okay? I won't be able to stay for long, so don't get your hopes up. You said 'Hakurei,' yes? Goodness, has it really been 60 years?"
Maybe Eiki can bring along a friend
>>
>>5614703
>...But she had to turn you down. "Now that the Child of Miare is no longer with us, our workload has gotten that much harder to handle. Not to mention, I… don't tend to mingle too well with parties."
She is going to lecture everyone and kill the vibe
>>
>>5614703
>...And somehow managed to convince her. "Oh, alright. Just for a little bit, okay? I won't be able to stay for long, so don't get your hopes up. You said 'Hakurei,' yes? Goodness, has it really been 60 years?"
Is she a buzzkill? Yes. But if anyone is going to take the challenge to integrate a Yama into a party it’ll be our MC.
Maybe share a little bit of what we know about the Hakurei clan in this day and age to catch her back up? Ask her about lectures regarding human/youkai interactions since it’s one of the thorniest topics we can cover and relevant to the Hakurei mission? Stuff to write down later.
>>
>>5614633
I’ve only just now noticed this. I skipped over it when refreshing I suppose.

I fully support our MC in being a teacher’s pet. Eiki deserves some appreciation for the work she puts in! Hopefully he doesn’t have a heart attack when she tries lecturing Reimu on sloth or greed.
>>
>>5615146
It would be funny, and also adorable, if we wind up becoming the person Shiki comes to whenever she has some time off and wants to vent.
>>
>>5614703
>...And somehow managed to convince her. "Oh, alright. Just for a little bit, okay? I won't be able to stay for long, so don't get your hopes up. You said 'Hakurei,' yes? Goodness, has it really been 60 years?"
Somewhat of a zealot, aren't we? Less causal than the normal Touhou protagonist.
>>5614710
Cute!
>>
Apologies, won't be able to update tonight due to cramming for a test. Tomorrow is also uncertain.
I've been struggling to come up with a lead-in for the next post; do you guys want to skip the build-up and just go straight to the middle of the party with a brief summary of the prelude, or would you prefer a more organic start describing the commute up the mountainside (probably with Shiki walking alongside you) and all that jazz? Feel free to support or throw around any other ideas you've got.
Thanks for your patience.
>>
>>5617479
Walking sounds very comfy.
Good luck with your test QM, but remember to rest well too.
>>
>>5617479
A chance to walk and talk with Shiki sounds nice. Also we can’t pass up getting to see everyone’s reaction to who we brought along with us.

>Thanks for your patience.
>Not “Please wait warmly until it is ready”
>>
>>5617479
Organic start is best. Maybe MC can share some of the stories from recent history so Eiki can feel somewhat informed for the party.

If we/she were really daring, we could try offering her advice on how to teach lessons to people who aren’t inclined to hear them as a lecture. We’re apparently good at sharing stories with kids, the most ADHD age group. She can grill us on how we make our lessons heard and we can freak out over teaching a Yama.
>>
>>5617508
>Giving Shiki's lecture tips
I don't know if that would make us Gensokyo's biggest hero by making them tolerable, or it's greatest villain by making them even more common
>>
>>5617513
It’ll take more than a single walk to a shrine to really help… or maybe not? I have no idea who would be willing to offer her this type of advice and didn’t trip lecture mode in the meantime. Maybe Eiki’s a quick study.

Maybe we’ve taught some of the same lessons she’s tried to impart and we could show how we speak of them. Assuming we’re not too busy freaking out.

MC just needs to remember to breathe and not fall down the mountain path. As amusing as it would be, let’s not make her work on her day off by judging our soul for real after we crack on head on the mountain.
>>
Quest Ending:You pass of old age quietly into the night. The euologies are divided between remembering you as a scholar, diplomat, and hero to the children, but also as the primary enabler behind one of Gensoukyo's worst nightmares. Peace, but at what cost!?
Either way, you finally cross the Sanzu River and come face to face with Eiki in her role as the Yama of Paradise. Tallying up your virtues and sins, she offers you a choice between:

>Reincarnation
Or
>Becoming a shinigami and working as her assistant.



...Out of the corner of your eye, you notice a rather frazzled Akyuu busily scribbling away at the pulpit. You close your eyes, and with a soft smile, take the third option.
>Join the Child of Miare in the cycle of rebirth. "You did say you wanted someone to be with you in the next life, no? I'm sorry it took so long for me to get here."

Bam. If I ever disappear off the face of the Earth, assume I've been spirited away to Gensoukyo and got eaten by Rumia
that this is how the Quest finishes.
>>
>>5617541
Kek
>>
>>5617513
Probably it would help, Shiki already lectures whenever she can.

>>5617541
>I've been spirited away to Gensoukyo and got eaten by Rumia
Just stay near a tree if you see any slow moving balls of darkness.
>>
>>5617541
Now you have me wondering what the “evil” route would look like.
>>
>>5617611
Hmm... In an attempt to pursue longevity for Akyuu's sake, you stumble across the youma books located at Suzunaan and "inadvertently" corrupt yourself (possibly Kosuzu as well) into becoming a youkai and are exiled from the Human Village as a result by an incredibly reluctant Reimu who eventually works up the will to exterminate you (but not without some good old trauma). Bad End, game over. The Bad Apple was you!
Feel free to come up with your own Bad Ends, there's tons I can think of (mostly with you ending up in a youkai's gullet because Spell Card rules aren't a thing yet until Touhou 6 afaik)
>>
Quick vote while I work on the update; do you guys want me to apply Japanese honorifics (-san, -sama, etc) or continue sticking to English conventions (Miss, Sir, so on)? I'm honestly fine with either, but I know it can feel a little cringe-worthy seeing gratuitous Japanese in an English-language work.

>Everyone in Gensoukyo speaks Japanese, so it makes sense to use it when it's appropriate.

>Stick to your native tongue, gaijin.

>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.
>>
>>5619762
>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.
>>
>>5619762
>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.
>>
>>5619762
>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.
Miss sama-san
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>>5619762
>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.

>>5619819
picrel
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>>5619762
>Who cares, just mix-and-match whenever you think it feels right.
Seems we’re not the picky type of weeaboos in this thread.
>>
>...And somehow managed to convince her.

You stand at the foot of the tall, imposing gate leading up to the Hieda House grounds, anxiously peering down both sides of the street. For a moment, you contemplate checking over your clothes one last time–then restrain yourself, struggling to avoid such flights of vanity.

The gates creak as Tsubaki slips through them, casting a glance your way. She carelessly rests a tanned arm atop your head, keeping you in place.

"What's got you so nervous?" She asks, still chewing on one of her ever-present stalks of grass. "Waiting for a date or something?"

You let out a quiet huff, squirming out from underneath her weight. Finally, an excuse to pat yourself down.

"Hah. It's a surprise."

She chuckles at that, then lets you go. "Alright then. Keep your secrets. We're leaving in a few minutes, so don't wait… too… long…?"

Tsubaki trails off in shock. Curious as to what might cause that reaction, you glance in her direction, only to brighten up as you see the woman you're waiting for approaching in the distance.

"Eiki-sama!”

The stern look on the deity’s face softens somewhat at the sight of you. She inclines her head in greeting as you take a deep bow, holding it for a few seconds before looking up to reveal an anxious smile.

“T-thank you for coming,” you stammer. It’s still hard for you to believe that you’re speaking to a real, true divinity like this. After so many nights spent praying at the altar in your room…

Behind you, Tsubaki nervously shuffles away, sun-kissed face suddenly pale and bloodless. “Shiki-sama? Oh, jeez… It’s-it’s a pleasure to see you again. Terribly sorry, but I’ve, uh, got something to do. Real important stuff. OhboyisthattheMastercallingmegottagobye!”

Without so much as a by-your-leave, the groundskeeper flees. You look on in bemused surprise, even as Eiki lets out an amused sigh.

“I see she still hasn’t gotten over my lecture yesterday.” Immediately, she raises a hand to forestall your incoming apologies, which are left to die in your throat.

“It’s through no fault of your own, child. Really, I must thank you–it’s been quite some time since someone’s responded to me as well as you have.” So saying, she briefly pats your head.

You make a valiant attempt to avoid imploding. It’s not a true blessing, you think, but still! Touched by a goddess!

Still, though, it depresses you somewhat to really put the situation in perspective. Eiki has little time to herself as it is, yet she still diligently comes up to try and guide people onto the path of virtue. Despite this, so few people seem to appreciate her words…

Though, having inadvertently listened in on her in full Lecture Mode the other day, you have to admit to yourself that you might, just possibly, actually understand why people feel that way despite the fact that an actual deity is sitting across from them.

[1/2]
>>
>Maybe… you can help her? “I find that people tend to be more receptive to lectures if you can draw their engagement somehow--get them to work their minds and make their own connections. The children at school find history lessons far more palatable if I can fit a few anecdotes in.”

>No, no, no. How hubristic can you be to assume a mere mortal like you could be of any help to someone like Eiki-sama!? Not to mention, you’re not sure how people might react to learning that you've… helped her. That seems like the kind of thing that'd get around. You like to think you've gotten a bit more self-aware.

[2/2]
>>
>>5620056
>Maybe… you can help her? “I find that people tend to be more receptive to lectures if you can draw their engagement somehow--get them to work their minds and make their own connections. The children at school find history lessons far more palatable if I can fit a few anecdotes in.”
>>
>>5620056
>No, no, no. How hubristic can you be to assume a mere mortal like you could be of any help to someone like Eiki-sama!? Not to mention, you’re not sure how people might react to learning that you've… helped her. That seems like the kind of thing that'd get around. You like to think you've gotten a bit more self-aware.

Assisting in her job implies that have knowledge of divine matters which we do not
>>
Rolled 2 (1d2)

>>5620056
I can’t decide. Dice take the wheel.
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>>5620056
>Maybe… you can help her? “I find that people tend to be more receptive to lectures if you can draw their engagement somehow--get them to work their minds and make their own connections. The children at school find history lessons far more palatable if I can fit a few anecdotes in.”
>>
>>5620054
>Maybe… you can help her? “I find that people tend to be more receptive to lectures if you can draw their engagement somehow--get them to work their minds and make their own connections. The children at school find history lessons far more palatable if I can fit a few anecdotes in.”
>”With the insight you have on countless judged souls, your potential to draw on history for lessons on the consequences of immoral behavior in both life and death far exceeds my own. Should you ever have the time, I would be honored to be an active listener you may refine your lessons with. I will spread those lessons to the best of my ability as well!”
Both options seem reasonable since we’re teaching a divinity and that is both important and terrifying to consider.

That said, Eiki will lecture anyway and I’m willing to say that improving the quality of Eiki’s lectures is too noble a goal to pass by. What higher calling can exist (for us) than assisting a divinity?
>>
Locked and writing.
>>
Pardon the delay, update should be out later today.
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>>5622282
I’d delay one more day, this isn’t a good day for Shiki.
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>>5622418
WELCOME <3 HELL
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>>5622536
Poor Eiki, having to work under her
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>>5622536
>So, humans have created a holiday which celebrates and encourages the telling of lies…



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