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Time: ???; Date: ???
Location: ???



I tell me, myself, that you are necessary to me. I tell you, yourself, that I am necessary to you. You tell you, yourself, that I am necessary to you. You tell me, myself, that I am necessary to you. I towards you, yourself, I towards me, myself, you towards you, yourself, and you towards me, myself, we spoke.

We said it.

And fear arrived.

I can not be wounded by anything and I do not feel pain from anything anymore. I have gone too far to be able to do so.

Like a log one day meeting a waterfall and plummeting, I am a youkai that will vanish after wandering around aimlessly.

Though evil never wins, nobody could ever say that you let that stop you.

I might be bad at everything I try, but at least I'm turning out to be pretty bad at giving up.







The fight continues, between you and this unknown creature you call the Carrion. You don’t know how you came to be here, or why you’re here of all places. But you do know one thing for certain.

This thing disrespected you, and the moment it did, something inside you went snap. Maybe it was the fact everyone called you stupid? Maybe it was the fact that those who don’t think your stupid think you’re weak instead? Actually, you didn’t really need a reason to fight, you just do it.

Because it’s a youkai’s job to cause problems!

“DIE!” the carrion summons a black mist around you, trying to crush you within it. “I CAST DEATH!” the loud declaration as hammy as it is, is not for show as it causes chains to appear next to you, ready to impale you on the spot. It’s not the most magnificent instant-death move….

MISS!

Nor is it a really accurate one, the chains simply move past you by a few inches. Not harming you in any way and finally dissipate once they move away from the battlefield. Your foe is silent at that, fuming from the inside at these events.

You smile at its frustration, knowing that it has finally wasted its last action. “Y-know, I kind of expected something bigger out of something your size. But I guess it’s just like they say…”

Holding those words for a cool one-liner, you go ahead and select the spell to end all of this. You cast the spell!
Immediately, the weapon within your hands loses its pinkish colour and morphs into a dark blob, it twists in shape and grows bigger, bigger, so big in size that you need both of your hands to hold it. As it has transformed into a gigantic ebony chainsaw that could cut a building in half in just one slice.

“The harder they fall!” you swing it down, with everything you got…."Death-Saw!" oh you almost forgot to declare it!

It still hit, the carrion raises both of their hands to block the blade, to no avail as it simply cuts through its arms, followed by hitting it straight on the head and ending it all by cutting it entirely in half.

No number pops out of from the damage, only the text ‘DEAD!’ but don’t be disappointed just yet.

“....So be it, you do realize I was trying to help right?” the moment it’s hp hits 0, the carrion starts squirming and tossing about. Actual panic showing in its eyes as it starts to disintegrate, like ash swept away by the wind except slower since it goes from feet first and again slowly but surely traveling to its head. “You will regret making this decision...enjoy eternity in thi-“it’s voice becomes noticeably calmer if not normal but sadly it’s head vanishes mid-sentence, so it cannot finish whatever it was about to say to you.

Not like you cared about what it was going to say anyway, automatically your weapon returns to normal and as if you’re possessed, your body puts your hands in the air repeatedly for some reason.



Then a fanfare starts playing, making you realize that this is a victory pose and the battle is won.

Another boring screen follows after that, something about exp and how you levelled up?

You’re not sure what it means but you don’t feel any different. Oh, wait a minute.

Your pockets feel heavier, the fact it’s filled to the brim with golden coins could have something to do with that. Frankly you’re not that impressed by that, anyone can do a sleigh of hand trick.

…Oh, never mind.

There’s 1,936 of them in your pockets. That wasn’t all, you are now carrying 1 ‘big black crystal’ alongside some spiky helmet and 4 potions that are supposed to be medicinal? What in the heck….

You’re certain your pockets cannot hold that many things, then again what were you carrying previously? A bunch of tanuki-hands, some wallets, some other stuff maybe too? you don’t remember that well and honestly it’s not like you need a lot of stuff to hoard for no reason.

It is stupid when you think really hard about it, then again isn’t the world itself kind of stupid?

Let’s not think too much about it. Loot is loot and loot are good. End of discussion.

Mid-thought, the world shifts once more. Like a mistake that was noticed at the last minute all the inherent ugliness of the weird filter you were under has finally gone away. You are yourself again, visible fingers and everything with no blur.

It’s a massive relief to be honest, if you were stuck under that form for too long then you might have tried to cut your hands to see if your blood was going to look weird too out of morbid curiosity.

Anyway, you look at your surroundings again, the portal beneath you has vanished and that whole crazy colour nonsense has vanished as well. Everything has returned to normal.

Except for the fact that you’re now in a dessert, sands of a blueish colour are now your new surroundings, no more water, just sand, only sand here, only sand there, sand everywhere.

Sand blue like the ocean surrounded nothing with more sand and a sky that’s….



There’s a giant tower in a crimson sky, super far away but you can see it with just the naked eye. It looks covered by…you’re not sure how to describe it but it’s surrounded by dozens of really small (or far away) critters that keep moving in and out of it, it looks really well-guarded and you swear that if it wasn’t for an feeling of extreme déjà vu that you’d have never seen something like this before.

You’ve got the same feeling for this place now that you think of it…some part of you feels like wherever you are right now is a place that it feels comfortable to be in. Again, you don’t know why.

Maybe it’s cause there’s no sun here, the place is still as dark as usual and frankly you can respect that, this place is very grue-friendly! Either way this place still doesn’t make sense to you. First it had water-like properties, then suddenly everything flies into a disarray and now you’re stuck in what looks like a beach with no water, no girls and no funky good times. What a sucky world to live in…

Not to forget you don’t have any real business in here too, that’s a double downer. Sure, exploring weird places is fun on some occasions but right now you really have a bunch of better stuff to do.

You decide that this castle and this whole place has nothing to do with you and turn around, ready to look for any sort of exit in here that doesn’t involve walking towards a very dangerous place.

So you walk in the dessert, you walk, you walk, and you walk all away from this no-

You should go to it You should go to it You should go to it You should go to it You should go to it
You should go to it You should go to it You should go to it You should go to it, it’s the only way out!

GO!
GO!
GO!
GO!
GO!
GO!
GO!


And you drop to your knees as a familiar sensation threatens to overwhelm you again. Your own thoughts go wild while your ribbon gains a bit of heat, you’re not sure why but like an animal feeling an instinctive urge to do something, you find yourself unable to ignore the call and look up again, at the tower in the sky. Not sure why it fascinates you to such an extent.

Yet you look with more focus anyway.

And you almost see it, you squint your eyes some more and notice something you haven’t before. Among the clouds and massive amount off critters, there is a clear pattern. A clear traffic, one row is leaving the place while the other is entering it. Both of them coming from the same direction…. from the same way out? Probably, if not then why would they move in such a pattern? It has to mean…

That the tower is a way in and out of this place, you can feel in your guts that that is the truth.
Or you’re massively assuming things. Either one could be right.

You’re not sure. But despite that doubt, you feel…no you KNOW that in that place.

There will be answers to the questions you’ve been having, if not something more.

It doesn’t make sense, heck it could even be very dangerous. But even so…
Sometimes, you just have to go a little crazy.
And everything will turn to gold!

Wait, hold your horses again.

Your pockets are twitching again, the crystal inside of it is trying to get away.
Looks like whatever you defeated is still alive after all, sure it’s been weakened to the point that it needs to rest inside some dumb crystal but that doesn’t change the fact it was your foe before.

You pick up the crystal and examine it further, for a second you swear you felt some fear.
Either way, the crystal is…well crystal like. Though you’re no expert, you can feel traces of power inside of it, exactly like that of the carrion. You wonder what would happen if you were to consume.

Would its powers become yours then? Or would it just give you some massive indigestion?
[X] Ignore the cr-

You put the crystal in your mouth, it doesn’t break when you munch on it. You spit it out as only now it dawns on you that as a crystal it is solid rock hard and thus not edible in the slightest.

You wonder if there’s another way to consume it, or if you could even talk to it.

So, you try to talk to it right now, because hey if you can do something then do it now! “Hey crystal, give me all of your power.” You speak straight to the point, not seeing the need to bother with niceties since you’re the winner and it the loser. Therefore, it has to obey your every whim.

The crystal doesn’t say anything, either it can’t talk or apparently it doesn’t want to give its powers to an evil person like you. If this thing had a mood, you’d be sure that right now it would be salty.

[A1] Maybe, you should like digest it? Then its power will be yours!
[A2]Try talking some more! Threaten it! Seduce it! Make it your slave!

[====================A================================]

There’s a tower in the sky and you feel like you should approach it.
Problem is, how will you do so?

[B1] Loud and bold, just fly towards it and if people shoot you then shoot right back at em!
[B2] Sneaaaaaaaaaaky, you can get in there without a sound, right? Sure, you can!

[====================B================================]

[C1] You really shouldn’t be wasting your time here, call your local god already.
Like honestly, what are you trying to achieve here? YOU. ARE. WASTING.TIME.


Thread three baby, I think this will be the last thread too.
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[A] Threaten to digest the crystal. Surely if it is alive it wouldn't want such a fate

[B1] Loud and bold, just fly towards it and if people shoot you then shoot right back at em!
Hopefully also fast. Like laser beam propulsion fast. It's either that or ride the chainsaw.

No C, we need to show the great meatball of the sky that we can grow and progress plot without relying on him.
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The meatball is a SHE, but she'd approve off that sentiment. Keep it going.

> [A] Threaten to digest the crystal. Surely if it is alive, it wouldn't want such a fate

Oh, threatening it is no problem. Knowing how to be scary to get what you want is an essential skill that all proper youkais have.

“You better act fun, or you’ll end up in my tum!” see? Just with those words alone and a tiny bit of flexing your arms around, you already become one of the most fearsome entities to dwell in this realm.

Look at how wide open your jaw is, see the sharp gaze in your eyes. This posture is befitting of a predator and you’re certain that no matter who’s affected by it, they’ll all instinctively reach for their protective blanket to protect themselves from she who lurks under their bed.

Knowing, waiting, that the slightest mistake can be fatal.

Also, just to nip this in the bud, NO you have not actually hidden yourself under the beds of others.

Well, you would if you could, but it sounds like a real hassle to do.

Like how would you even enter someone’s house, sneak into their room and crawl under their bed without them being none the wiser?

And even then, what would you do afterwards?

Do you just wait for the person to notice that you’re there or do you have to let out a cough for them to realize it?

Either way it’d be awkward unless you’re planning to eat them.

But if so, then just eat your meal, hasn’t your momma told you not to play with food? Overall hiding under someone’s bed is not worth it.

You talking to yourself aside, the crystal does not make a single noise. It doesn’t seem impressed by your spookiness or ingenuity, cause if it was then it’d be talking by now. Which again, it is not doing.

Time to try another strategy then. You pick up the thing and hold it over your open mouth. “I said, be my slave or be eaten! I’m not bluffing here just so you know! I’m a super omnivore! Om nom nom!”

Again, there’s no answer. Looks like the thing is either very stubborn or a very bad loser. Either way there’s no point in threatening it again.

It’s like what the good old you once said. “If you stare at the sun and it burns your eyes, then don’t stare at it again or the same thing will happen!” it took you five tries to learn such an amazing wisdom.

But learned you did, so it’s clear to you that another strategy should be used.

You already know which one to use, watch and learn folks.

[X] If it can’t be threatened…then threaten it’s loved ones!
[X] Commit to the bit if you don’t eat it now then you’ll look weak!
If neither is satisfactory, write ins are always an option. Feel free to toss it even but I doubt you'll do that.
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Dessert Area-Touhou Double Focus Music Extended.

https://youtu.be/y7Wlz8kfI0o


Gotta fly fast, gotta fly fast,
Gotta fly faster, faster, faster, faster!

Boots stompin' on the ground [VROMP VROMP]
Meanest Youkai in town,
Got herself a situation,
Chainsaw abomination,
Let loose in an unknown station,
By a mysterious organization! (Or so she thinks)

Don't, don't, don't, don't, don't gun, just run,
Just go, go, go, g-g-g-go, go!

[BRAAAAAP] x2

Rumia, she's coming through.
Rumia, she's gone cuckoo,
Rumia, she'll cut off your neck,
So, watch out.... or you'll be next!

Gotta fly fast (You'll be next!), gotta fly fast (You'll be next!),
Gotta fly faster, faster, faster, faster, faster!
[CHAINSAW INTENTISIFIES!]


Forgot the rest of the lyrics but that aside, I'll need just a bit more details since depending on your answer and speed of approach, the circumstances will be a bit different.

[X] Fast as in your normal maximum fly speed, full control, and everything.
Kind of boring, but it’s the safe option in case someone tries to shoot you down.
[X] Even faster, laser-propelling and all, you can barely see, and control is super hard.
The middle option, doesn’t have the flaws of either but not that big of an advantage.
[X] BEYOND EVEN THAT! So fast, you can’t see anything, your inner organs compress and whatever wall happens to be in your way will outright shatter due to your insane velocity. (This. Will. Hurt.)
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[X] Commit

[X] Even faster, laser-propelling and all, you can barely see, and control is super hard.

Enjoy the ride, but don't break anything. The tower owner wouldn't like that. Going too fast is also what started all of this.
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de84bn2-5d753e33-bc2d-406f-928b-b60b1d5376e3
> [X] Commit

As previously established, the crystal thing refuses to speak to you.

Naturally you try to force it to speak anyway since such attitude is very spoil sporty.
When you lose, you got to admit you’ve lost and do whatever the winner wants you to.

That’s the law all youkais obey, at least in Gensokyo. Then again, you’re not there currently since who’s to say that thing must do anything for you? You’d have the same reaction yourself.

Still, there’s no choice now. You got to eat the thing, or you’ll look weak. A youkai’s word is their word unless your race is known for deception but even so your words should not be taken lightly.

A youkai that gives an empty threat is a joke. It means you're nothing more than talk, perhaps even more man than monster. You'd become the fodder of your peers.

Such a blow to your rep is unacceptable, you pick up the thing. Open your mouth and….

Find out it’s too big for you to swallow in one bite. At least it’s too big for a bite that's 'normal'.

But that’s okay.

You’ve got a solution for that!

You simply open your mouth again, oh boy do you open it. It must be five feet large by now because yes, you can open your jaw the same way a snake can. It’s a real strain on the muscles, you might have a cramp on your cheeks later but still you are not as limited as your appearance makes you look. Oh, wait it’s ten feet now! And there’s no cramps either, what a miracle to have right now!

Either way, you gobble the thing right up!
And regret it immediately!

You feel ill, very, very ill. And not a bit stronger. It’s the same feeling as when you tried to consume that super laser blaster box of the Kirisame just today, except a thousand times worse!

For what you’ve consumed was no mere magical item, nor divine artifact.

No, you’ve put your jaws on something so much more.

Now to hope it won’t kill you.

Have a nice trip!

Also, it’s a colourless egg your dummie, learn the difference between that and a crystal.

https://youtu.be/ZtZP5An8CRc

Rumia find herself in the middle of a village.
She does not look like herself today.
She looks like a big yellow, mean lizard.
But she does not care.
She is happy this way.
She's pushing buildings with her giant claws.
And stomping carts with her super big feet.
Everybody in the village has stopped talking and is staring at her. Then panic at her rampage.
Rumia doesn't care.
She thinks it's hilarious.
Everybody is afraid of this amazing power.
This makes Rumia really happy.
An annoying teacher is asking her to leave for being disruptive.
Rumia doesn't care, instead she opens her big mouth.
And shoots out a breath of fire, oh, man, is it cool.
Rumia covers the village in black flames.
Everyone is clambering for a way out.
The teacher is screaming, she should have blocked it instead of dodging.
The skins of hundred innocent except for hers begin to melt.
Rumia lets out a laugh and goes out to play somewhere with more people.
But no matter where she goes.
Nobody wants to be friends with her now.
When they see her, they run away, or they fight her.
Rumia doesn't care, this much fun is better than any bond.
But her energy is not limitless and now she needs to rest.
Rumia finds a nice, cosy, cave nearby and squeezes inside.
She sleeps for a bit, the fun of today will be just as fun tomorrow!
But when she wakes up, she finds she can no longer move.
Her body has grown, and now she's stuck in the cave she slept in.
This makes her easy picking for any hero that may come for her.
A hero does come, it's a girl with red clothes and a big frown.
A few seconds later, Rumia is slaughtered without having had a fighting chance.
Maybe this is how her victims felt...
Whatever.
Having flesh is dumb anyway.
It always breaks down on you one way or another.
They're not tough, like a good old moment of fun.
Rumia is nothing more than bones but still stands tall.
A voice asks her if she wants to have even more fun.
The answer to that can only be yes. Why would she say no?
She feels a powerful energy welling within her.
Suddenly she's standing in a strange world.
On top of a mountain, made of chains and bones.
The blizzard stops and the clouds above her split open.
An intense fear overcomes her, she does not know who this person is.
A serenity overcomes her, she knows who this person is.
It is her new best friend. 'Now you can have whatever shape you want, but you're also my puppet.'
Thank you, Anon.


Looking at the closest mirror is recommended.

[Music Stop]

…..

….

Huh?

Oh, you were just dozing off for a moment there. Guess that can’t be helped, being in a blue dessert and shenanigans like that sure make it fun to stare at the scenery right?

Right?

Yeah, it can’t be helped.

You said that twice now, but anyway you pat yourself a bit. Stretch your arms and legs and get ready to fly off towards the tower in the distance over there…. with what amount of speed again?

> [X] Even faster, laser-propelling and all, you can barely see, and control is super hard.

Ah, yes. Because choosing the best of both worlds always gives the best stuff rather than making you a master of none if you know what you’re doing. After all, back home it’s not simpleminded strength and ugly endurance that’s admired. What’s admired is creativity and imagination. Hence taking the best of what you have…

Isn’t that the most creative option could come up with?
Anyway, you firmly set your feet on the ground. Your arms are pointed behind you and you’re ready to get some answers out of this place.

So, let’s do this! MOON SIGN: MOONLIGHT RAY!

https://www.newgrounds.com/audio/listen/15437

Like a mermaid inside a bathtub with wheels who’s pushed off a bunch of stairs, your body immediately lifts into the air. Like a speeding bullet, you soar through said air, like a person that’s about to hit a bunch of people in the middle of their flight path, you’re about to hit a bunch of peo-

NAH! You move down at the last moment, swiftly passing by a bunch of small blurry creatures with wings on their backs. You think they’re fairies, and if they’re not then guards, maybe fairy guards? you can’t really tell because of the dust gathering against your glasses. You don’t think it matters, for even if they’ve seen you. You’ve already bypassed them. Speed is a funny thing like that, one second you notice something and by that time, said thing is already far away. If only you had some sort of super-perception, then you’d be able to fly like this all day.

But you don’t need to give it a second or two and you’ll inevitably smash into that tower’s wall, maybe break a vase in someone’s room and if you’re lucky, decapitate the first person you meet inside.

Unless that’s’ not a good idea…. WAIT, is that not a good idea?

You’re not certain, sure there’s a chance that whoever lives here could be friendly but are you really going to give someone that kind of doubt now?

You’re already a flying blur of a youkai canon! And again, you never learned how to stop! Also is it you or was passing through just very e-

Oh, there’s a red reticule thingy on you now. You’re not sure what it means.
Oh and there’s a bunch of critters just up ahead, the same clutter you described before and thought you went past by right now. But you didn’t, those where probably just some scouts or some-FOCUS!
Ahem, what you’re saying is. Your sudden acceleration towards their location has probably made your soon to be host wary of your approach.

Or it’s just some automatic defence system. You don’t know.

Either way, there’s a bunch of blurry creatures just up ahead. Ready…not ready cause they seem a bit unaware of you since again, you’re literally rushing out of nowhere. So how would anyone expect that? They don’t! But they are probably willing to fight you to defend their oh so special shady spot.

Their tower is very close though, you think…well, you can see something large approaching so either the sky is getting smaller or you’re getting closer to your destination at an insanely rapid pace. Your choice of view.

But ahem, that still doesn’t change the last problem.

IF you stop right now, then you will have to deal with whoever’s waiting outside. But if you don’t stop, then you may crash your way inside if you’re lucky. And splatter into bloody chunks against a hard wall if you’re unlucky.
Of course, you’d survive the latter, but it would still give a negative impression on anyone who’s inside. Wait, what was your goal again?

It was to get inside, right? Yeah, that’s true! But how will you do that?

[X] Too fast to stop, keep that speed up, smash into that house and demand whoever’s inside to give you the info you want RIGHT NOW!
[X] Hoy, hombre. No need to be so hasty, why not be friendly? Slow down, give a smile and ask whatever guards there are if you can be let inside.
[X] Murder everyone…. because…. uh, because…because you can? You’re not sure why you’d do that now, but dear god would it be exciting and relaxing.
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[X] Hoy, hombre. No need to be so hasty, why not be friendly? Slow down, give a smile and ask whatever guards there are if you can be let inside.

Let's not break the place until we need to. It'll be fun enough to scare the residents at our immediate approach.
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[X] Hoy, hombre. No need to be so hasty, why not be friendly? Slow down, give a smile and ask whatever guards there are if you can be let inside.

Tsk, what a boring approach. What's the point of approaching something at such a fast pace if you don't make a dramatic entrance? It's not like anything bad could happen because of that.

Aside from every person on sight getting ready to defend themselves, you getting potentially overwhelmed and probably wasting more energy and time than is really neede-

Okay, fine. You get it.

There's still the problem on how to slow down though. You try your best to stop as best as you can and kind of succeed at doing so....at the cost of feeling like you smashed your face and body into concrete. Since all the momentum has to go somewhere...that's how it works right?

You're not sure but anyway, with some struggle and a headache you successfully stop correctly.

Just a few meters away from the previously and of course no longer so blurry creatures of before.

Well, the word creature is demeaning but...what else do you call these things? flightless birds? long bill things?

They are yellow and look like plush toys. Quite weird looking too, as if they've been put together by mad lab assistants or some evil necromancer. The stitching on their body was crude, visible and really looked like scars. (You're not sure if they're fake). None of the creatures have legs either, instead of that useless body part, a pair of miniature mini-wheels are attached to the sides of their bodies. You doubt that they are actual toys, but you're not sure if they're cosplaying fairies either...fashion aside, you're sure that if a random child saw these things, they'd run off crying without turning back.

Also, very fluffy looking, in shorter words you'd describe them as the unholy fusion of an Kedama (Fuzzball-creature) mixed with a fairy mixed with some sort of toy. If anything, they all look like botched mascots of companies that do not exist.

So, your kind of just staring at them, not sure if they're edible or not. Maybe they'd taste super good, cause if so...

Said things have turned around now and are staring at you the same way you are at them. Seemingly wondering where you came from, but not too alarmed since you're not shouting or firing lasers of death everywhere. One of them, with brown hair and a three foot height approaches you with some wary. She tilts her head up a little, then a little more, and then decides to simply fly up a bit higher so it can look at you face-to-face. Then says nothing, leaving only a blink as if something wasn't quite right with the current picture. But she wasn't sure what. "You...." finally she frowns, while coming to a conclusion.

"Me?" you reply back, not saying more as you're waiting to see what she's about to say.

"You're out of uniform mate, and late too." the thing, fairy, fairy-thing says while frowning. Or rather, you assume it's a frown. It's hard to tell given that every single one of them has some cartoon face-mask rather than their actual face on display. "Don't know what you've been doing in those lands below despite orders not to go there but that can be talked about later, so hurry up, get dressed and get ready cause the boss big announcement is about to happen soon." also you don't know what they're talking about.

And you don't get to ask either, as a few others nod along to some unspoken decision and move out of the way. Red reticule on you gone just as well, which you know remember as the signal that a laser was pointed at you. That little detail awkwardly put in the middle of another action aside, it seems like you're about to be let in just like that. No muss or fuss or obstacle.

Which is a terrible security management, heck it's almost like stealing candy from a baby.

Which is fine with you.

Then again have you ever stolen from a baby? those little bastards have a firm grip, a loud voice and a determination that's quite frightening if challenged. Not to forget that any parent in sound-range will go bat-shit insane once they notice this.

So the proper line should be: It's almost as easy as stealing candy from a baby who's unaccompanied by an adult. (*1)

*1: Difficulty may vary depending on what kind of race the baby is a part off.

It's a fascinating thought, but again day-dreaming backfires "Hold it just a second!" as another one of the creatures speaks up, this one's got red hair but other than hair or voice every single one of them looks the same. Hence the detail in that, ahem she speaks up. "We've got a code, remember?! The boss will really make us sorry if we let yet more people just casually walk in, mate. Heck, who's to say that girl isn’t a spy huh?"

Why do they even think you're one of them? you don't even look remotely similar to them in any shape or form.
"I'm totally not a spy, trust me. I'd know if I was!" but even so, you'd be a super moron if you didn't take this opportunity.

"Okay, I trust that" another one at once replies, "Wait, mate. Wouldn't that beat the point of having a code?" the brown-one muses back. "Oh, that's true. But she said she's not a spy. And honestly, who doesn't know a person best other than the person themselves, mate?" yet another one speaks up, there's like 5-10 in front of you right now. So, you guess some off them just want to have a part in the conversation, even if they have nothing better to say.

"Mates, Mates, Mates!" The red-head claps to get their attention. "This doesn't need to be a big problem!" she does and continues speaking, with overly moving hands to keep said attention. "There's an easy way to determine if she's one of us or an intruder.... it’s to ask if she knows the code duuuuuh." That's just common sense.

Still, somehow that felt unneeded.

Like that remark may cause your opportunity to get in to slowly slip away.

You should do something before you're asked to answer a question you don't know the answer off.

But what?

[X] Ahem, you're not some peasant worker. You're a..... a Big Shot, who's been invited by the boss herself to enter!
[X] Pffffff, everyone totally knows what that dumb code is. The real question....do YOU know what the code is huh?
[X] Just fly past them since they're distracted right now, dumb fairies have bad memories anyway or so you think.
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[X] Ahem, you're not some peasant worker. You're a..... a Big Shot, who's been invited by the boss herself to enter!

Big Shot! Now's your chance!
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Aye, the update will come tomorrow.

Just writing done a lot more than is really necessary, but I'm going to go ahead and just keep writing until the point comes where one's decision is important again.

That's to say, hang on whatever you use to hang for sunday is the day!
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[X] Just fly past them since they're distracted right now, dumb fairies have bad memories anyway or so you think.
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Huh, a tie out of nowhere.

In that case I'll wait til tommorow to see if it'll be broken and if it is not, then it'll be the time for the dice to decide which of the two votes will be taken.
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DICE

DECIDE THIS TIE!

Rolling 1d2 => 1
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So the winning vote is 1.

Understood, in that case expect the update this evening.
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[X] Ahem, you're not some peasant worker. You're a..... a Big Shot, who's been invited by the boss herself to enter!

Hmm, after some thought. You remember that you've never been that good at deception, well, wait no, you are GOOD at pretending to be an harmless little girl to fool one's future meal. But any other attempt at deceiving other people mostly falls flat for some reason. Mostly because most people are oh so 'educated' and have this wonderful thing called 'common sense' or so they like to boast.

But really, if common sense was oh so common, then why don't you have it, huh?
You'd like to be a genius too! That way you could, like, make up some machine that hunts stuff and cooks the food for you while you get to laze around all day and have people beg for your opinion on stuff!

But you don't have that, like how birds cannot fly and fish cannot swim, so you cann-

Hold on, that metaphor was completely wrong just now, wasn't it?

Any way, all of that stuff is to say that: You're not some master manipulator. If you were, you wouldn't be here.
But do you NEED to be one? That's the real question, and frankly...you don't think you need to be.

You're not racist....but

Fairies are known to be lesser lifeforms...

In absolutely every aspect.

And every way to be.

That's just how things are.

And how things will be forever.

That may sound dismissive, but really that's how it works: Some people are INCAPABLE of changing. That's not some philosophy, but an honest to god common knowledge. Fairies live forever, Tsukumogami innately hate humans, evil spirits haunt and posses others and youkais live to torment and eat people. Most things that are not human have a set purpose.

And serving that purpose is what makes you happy, and also what makes you exist. Can't really be happy if you just fade away from existence one day, but ahem. You as a youkai and they as fairies have a path set upon them that must be followed. Call it instinct, call it destiny, there are simply some things that cannot change no matter how hard you try.

That's a good thing, and now...something that you'll use to your advantage! You're going to lie with absolute confidence!

But first to get their attention, they're still chattering amongst themselves even now. Despite the fact that you're right in front of them and can hear everything they're saying, they are now trying to remember what the code actually is...

Yeah, they're real morons.

Let's do this then!

On 3!

3!
2!
1!

....

Okay, fine. You're a bit nervous, but still come on and go do it!
Let's try it again!

3!
2!
1!
GO!

"JUST A MINUTE HERE, MISSIES!" you shout boldly to catch their attention, then stomp your foot in disapproval. "I've got a MILLION things to be doing before lunchtime here. Do you gals even know WHO in the heck you're talking to here?"

They don't respond, instead the creatures just calmly turn to you. Look you dead in the eye and stare silently at you with no expression...because they have no face. But still you don't like the way they look at you. It's like they're thinking...

"That's the dumbest question ever, mate." the brown one quips back, before pointing a finger at you. "We're talking to YOU here, not some three-headed monkey behind you or anything....who did you think we were talking to?"

"Mates, isn't it obvious?" the red one somehow sounds smug now as they speak up, as if they confirmed something. "She's an idiot mate, if she can't tell who she is herself then how can she be sure she's not a spy huuuuuuuuuh?" and ends the sentence by pointing dramatically at you, which is super rude and very unconvincing.

You hear clapping and see everybody else nod in amazement or go 'wooaah' in surprise.
So never mind, it's pretty convincing to them, if not one amazing deduction.

Again, morons the lot of them. "Oh, and who are YOU again?" not one to give up, you take a step closer to one of the creatures specifically, hissing in their face with an outraged tone. "Some low-pay worker that's just a face in the masses."

The creature frowns at you, clearly taking the bait. "Excuse me, what di-" but you don't let them finish!

Instead, you huff in their face and continue speaking in a cocky tone. "Listen, I don't know what you want from me, but I assure you, you're messing with the wrong person. Everybody in this place will tell you that I don't respond well to tomfoolers and wanna be funny guys." not only that, but for every sentence you move your hand in some extravagant way, as if you were some vampire that's scoffing at the boring oh so cliché art galleries in some super quaint museum stuff.

Their face shows confusion at the sudden word assault, and they get ready to defend themselves, "But I-"

"BUTTS? What do butts have to do with this, you dirty peasant!?" Again, you simply don't let them get the turn to act, then you chuckle like some aristocrat that's got a stone in their throat and pinch your nose in disgust as you look down on her. "Fu, fu, fu. Did you want to show off how smart you were, perchance? Well, you've done so, but don't consider me impressed! The working class truly is an odious specimen to condensate with, but oh golly, girl. IF you really want to make yourself useful then go ahead and go get me a kiwi juice now, will you? It's oh so terribly h-o-t in this room."

At this point, the confusion spreads to everybody, and they just stare at your discussion. With not a single one of them seeing the need to interfere or call you out on the massive nonsense train that you're currently conducting. Know why?

It's because of CONFIDENCE, no idea why that simple things works oh so well. But confidence is almost like the soap that life gives you, so you can slip yourself through tiny holes that you normally cannot slip into without lubrication!

But anyway, the creature to their respect. Still somehow has their bearing and tries to speak again. "That's not h-"

"NOT POSSIBLE?!" you don't interrupt her, at this point you just shout over her. With the intensity of someone who discovered their mother was murdered. "Well, you're hardly getting off to a flying start if you can't serve a few drinks!"

And now the poor thing is shaking red in anger, ready to ca-"I'm so sorry, m'aam. Don't mind our dumb friend here!" only to be interrupted by the brown-one, who quickly shoves the other's head down before speaking to you again. "She didn't know who she was talking to mate, and frankly neither do I. But if you want, we can go get a drink for you if you're a....." she pauses for a moment, gears grinding in her head. Then narrows her eyes at you. "Wait, who are you exactly here?"

Ahah, now that you've been established as the one wearing the big shot pants here. The creature is asking you for more detail on exactly who the heck you are. Most likely to know if you're related or are in good cahoots with their massive meister, huge honcho, grand general, enormous executive, oversized overseer, swoll sergeant, big boss, corpulent commander and probably waifu for laifu that would be their chief of considerable size.

Problem is: How do you answer that?

"Who am I?" The answer is simple, "You must think I'm a strange fella now don't you workers?"

They don't answer, awaiting your answer with curiosity and, for a few, still some suspicion.

"You know I'm a big shot already, and as naturally that comes to my big shotty nature, I am also a primma donna. (You don't know what that is, but it sounds fancy). Yes, oh yes, I know what people say about the elite. But I'm going to let you all in on a little secret: My mother died just two years ago."

"WHAT?!" an immediate outburst comes out, all of them distracted by the sudden bomb thrown out. "WHAT DO YOU MEAN?!" because who wouldn't be when someone reveals something of such a heavy weight like it's news about the weather.

You do, also you put an arm over your face and make your voice sound as sad as possible now, like you're a tragic heroine about to narrate her sad backstory. "Oh! It completely turned my world on end! N-no-pss-no-" you resist the urge to laugh, "Nothing's how it used to be! I don't know if you can understand what I mean, but I just seem to have lost all interest in life!" you'd add in some tears if you could, but so far you think you're doing a great job at doing this nonsense.

That must be terrible....is what they're thinking right now, right? You can't tell because again, you've put an arm on your face to hide your expression. Maybe you should continue the pity rant, but you're not sure if doing so will be too much.

"B-b-b-but, I can see I'm boring you all..." cold feet comes to you, so you stop for now and sniffle while wiping away some tears that aren't there at all. "I'd tell you all mo-...no, all that is none of your concern! I should have never told you gals any off that! I'll be going now!" and you end the conversation by simply running past them while they're still in....shock?

Shock, smochk, whatever. Either way you've managed to get past them, so now it's time to get into this joint!

Said joint isn't a joint though, it's a tower. But not really a tower now that you got a closer look at it...uh, it's hard to describe, but if you had to say anything then you'd say the whole thing is actually pretty simply to describe in super simple words.

It's another fricking ice palace, but like it's got meaty parts, is floating in the air and doesn't show any signs of melting despite being inside a blue desert of all things. The whole thing is rather huge, looks like it was made in random patterns, as some places look orderly while others are recently made. There are stairs on the outside that lead nowhere and holes in the walls out of which leak a pure black liquid of unknown origin. Occasionally the whole place twitches at some rhythm like it's got a heartbeat of all things. All in all, the place does not give you happy fun time vibes. Was that a good description? You're not sure, but whenever you try to stare at it for too long, your head just starts to get a pounding in it.

Maybe it's cause of the weird vibes, or like...it's too big for your mind to properly register? That'd be a new sensation.

There is however one thing you do have a clear view off now, and that's the rows of people entering and leaving. On the south part of this whole tower, there lie...two giant conveyor belts? One leads inside the tower, while the other heads to the opposite direction, into some giant hole of sorts that you can only assume is a portal to somewhere else. But more importantly, what's on top off those conveyor belts is much more interesting...

Because they're fairies, NORMAL FAIRIES. At least those who are about to enter the place are and seeing how those who exit the place through the other conveyor all look inhuman with their toy-like appearance, knight-like appearance, really a whatever kind of look a fairy put in a blender with some random object look appearance...

Things are a bit....s-s-su-s-su-odd looking thing if you've got anything to say about it!

Oh wait, you almost forgot another thing. This whole tower is super-weaponized, like holy heck. Look at all these canons, the size of trees that are just stacked on the walls of this thing. Not only that, but you wouldn't be surprised if the thing itself couldn't be used as a battering ram, thanks to it's oddly sword-shaped top. All in all, this looks more like a fortress than a tower, if not...a secret base? A secret base filled with shady stuff for shady activities for shady goals! Ain't that shady?!

You're a bit amazed by the whole thing, hence you're in the middle of being super visible by everyone gazing at the place. You count your lucky fortune that you haven't been shot yet by one of those canon things or were approached by yet another bunch of creatures that are curious on why you're here. But that can be changed if you don't move your butt now.

As if the heavens answer your doubt, you can suddenly hear a bell being rung. Loud and clear as you swear it comes from deeper inside. You guess, this must be the call for the big announcement in some meeting hall, like how cows are summoned by bells to get into their barn before night falls lest you'd go ahead and slaughter any left alone on the field.

Speaking of cows, it's working. Everybody's who's outside right now flinches at the sound. Turns around and all enter the place through a giant door in the centre of the place that just opened. (Exception being newcomers, like those at the entering conveyor, but you don't know why since you're assuming they're newcomers.)

You instinctively try to join them cause why not, but then stop yourself.
Are you sure you want to go in there? There will be plenty of potential foes attending whatever that announcement is.
But are you sure you don't want to go in there? The information could be totally worth it, if not shed a new light.

To be honest, you're not sure on what to do right now.

But when haven't you?

May as well trust your guts, heart, brain or whatever organ you prefer the most.

[X] The bell beckons, let's get in there, pretend you belong and take a lookesie looky.
[X] The bell beckons, but instead of walking in. Try being a sneaky kind of gal.
[X] Ignore it, if everybody's inside then the outside is yours to explore! (If this is chosen, then vote at B too.)
[====================A===============================================================]

[X] May as well see where those conveyors lead, right? They look shady and god are they tempting.
[X] May as well head to the very top of this place, that's where people put important stuff, right?
[X] Oooh, look. it's a portal thing maybe! May as well approach that since that could be the way out of this place!
[====================B===============================================================]

Jokes on you, they all lead to the same thing. It's just the illusion of choice! Mwahahahahaha!

I'm kidding, but anyway I'll wait warmly. Either way before this week ends, we'll move on swiftly.
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[X] The bell beckons, but instead of walking in. Try being a sneaky kind of gal.

Can't find anyone up top if the person up there also comes for the bell.
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Okay but HOW to be sneaky
With catlike thread. Upon your prey, you steal! In silence dread, in cautious way you feel!

With no tic, or tac to be heard on the floor, you shall sneak your way past through this large door!

Ah, but one may wonder if not fear and doubt. How could a grue possibly make her way through a place with no place to hide nearby while there’s a moving crowd!? But those who wonder, may have forgotten one thing.

To remove any light with no effort is something at which you’re the king!

With a little tap of the hand and the squeeze of one’s but.
Everything that can be seen is turned into a dark blot!
It’s not subtle or precise or even complex.
But to think you’re responsible for it…it’s funny how little it comes as a reflex.

But again, off the rhyme, for now is the time….

To pass through that door, to enter a new floor!
To see not a thing and not be seen in return.
To use the sound of the bell as a lure to spy unannounced on your foe’s important union.

As unlikely as it may sound, the whole thing is a success. The light returns to all and what you see…

Gives you quite the distress! For lo and behold, among all these people seated and chatting so orderly. Who else could you have expected to see on the podium but…? a friend dressed like royalty?

Beautiful blue hair, on which lies a crown. She’s looking at everybody with a displeased frown, she raises one regal rod in the air and makes her voice loud and clear. “Fairy Friends! It’s me, Cirno!” the crowd however gives her no cheer.

“Don’t be quiet now, clap for your Overlord at once!” her demand is heard and met with…some reluctance.

“Good, great, at least you know your place…” she seems sated with that, “But there’s something wrong with the current pace!” except she was not, this whole meeting turns out to be no more than a mass scolding.

“Do you all not realize that our time is unfolding?! We are mighty, we are immortal, should taking over the world then not be normal? But what have you all done? What have you all achieved? You’ve done no more than spread breadcrumbs, so of course eye’m displeased!” the crowd doesn’t seem moved, by words so intense. If the shrugs and eye rolls say anything, then you’d say they could not care less.

“Don’t give me those looks, I’ve given you all you need. SO, I WANT RESULTS! 150 PERCENT MORE than the…the...” alas there’s no word that rhymes with result, but even so, you can clearly tell this may be a cult?

Fairies with wheels, knights with no faces, is it you or do you hear a heartbeat at the ceiling?
That doesn’t matter, never mind it. Give it no thought, the description of the room may wait.
But your next action does not.


[X] You speak up loud and clear, outrage in the face and confusion in the mind.
Could your dear chilly pall be some grand master-mind?
That could not be right in even thousands of years!

[X] Your mouth is silent, and your hands are trembling, what could be the meaning of this odd telling?
And is it something you can manage? You want to act up, but this moment repels that.

[X] Betrayal! Disloyal! How could this possibly be?
You would have never guessed it, but clearly Cirno is working for the enemy.
And such an act, such a surprise, can only be made right if everybody dies!
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[X] You speak up loud and clear, outrage in the face and confusion in the mind.
Could your dear chilly pall be some grand master-mind?
That could not be right in even thousands of years!

As if we could pass up a chance for dramatics. I just hope Cirno is of right normal mind.

It should be said that the grammar and flow could improve, I fear. But still, these rhymes deserve good cheer
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[X] You speak up loud and clear, outrage in the face and confusion in the mind.
Could your dear chilly pall be some grand master-mind?
That could not be right in even thousands of years!

Y-you, you want to say that you’ve gone delusional or that perhaps this is all nothing more than a bad dream. I mean, why wouldn’t you?

When you see your chilly old pal, after a long time of not knowing where she is, in the middle of a place you don’t know where it is.

One could say such an encounter could be lucky, if not too convenient. Now convenient is all right with you, the easier things are the less effort you must spend doing them. Wait, you’re just rambling.

Back to the subject, your good old friend Cirno is wearing quite the weird clothes. They’re not weird as in weird, weird but they’re… Sort of weird? Never mind, let’s try that description again, but in more detail.

She’s still got the body of a young girl, no blemishes, odd marks, or anything that seems out of place on her Healthwise, but she’s also covered by a crimson cloak of a material oh so soft-looking and shiny that you wouldn’t be surprised if it’s overpriced and exotic. Such a thing really doesn’t suit her, not that you care for fashion but her whole air now gives the vibes of a stroppy and spoilt teen, dressed as though she did not know the difference between daddy’s girl and honest to god cosplaying. As said before, a golden crown lies on top of her blue (combed!) head. (Where did she even get jewellery?) The sceptre in her hand is even more impressive as though its colours are the same, the jewels encrusted within it change constantly as if she’s wielding a rainbow. Finally, there remains the throne on which she’s seated, which lies on top of an ice-blue podium but is itself just…a throne. Sure, it’s a bit yellow, but it looks more like a Cirno-sized chair.

She’s sitting in a cross-legged position, well she got her arms crossed too but that’s more to make her whole self-come off as very confident.

But that’s nothing special, that kind of pose might as well be hers.

“Mmm, still trying to act tough aren’t you all?” the fairy herself speaks up again, since her crowd hasn’t answered. “Heh, I guess you all need a small reminder on who the boss around here is!” with that announcement, she raises her rod high in the air and nothing happens.

Because everybody else present has decided to prostrate themselves in front of her before she could continue. “No, there’s no need for that!”; “Cirno’s the greatest, nay the very best!” and throw out a whole bunch of flatteries as well, which in hindsight feel more dripped in sarcasm and begrudging honey than the odds of them being genuine words of admiration. You wouldn’t have noticed that before, but you do now! Guess there’s at least one positive outcome by becoming slowly paranoid.

Not that you're paranoid, just more afraid of the world in general. Wait, is that really something to boast about?

ANYWAY, let's continue.

“And you better all remember it!” Cirno lets out a joyous hum as she puts her arm down, satisfied by their reaction. But clearly still not done with them, “Okay so now….” A finger comes to her chin, as she thinks of something. “Wait…” she’s thinking super hard. “Oh yeah!” and finally it comes out. “What are you all standing around here for? Do you all need a reminder on my amazing, noble, one-of-a-kind, rare, delicious backstory to raise morale? If so…too bad, that speech was already done, and speeches are dumb anyway so here’s the next step…are you all ready to hear it?” she puts a hand around her ear then stays quiet for a few seconds. “Are you all ready to hear it?” she repeats again after a few seconds of silence, which makes the crowd realize they’re supposed to say yes. “Good! Here’s your new direction! WE ARE GOING T- “you’d love to stay quiet and listen some more to this.

WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIIIIIIIIIISSSSS!?” but your feelings get the better of you, with a loud shout. You remove yourself from your hiding spot, fly at a quite pace to approach Cirno and….

Immediately get ganged up on every fairy, knight, and servant present in the room because you’re a shouting individual who’s holding a weapon and sneaked her way inside this place, which is natural.
But that’s fine if they want trouble with you then trouble is what they get. Let’s kick their assess!

The world turns into a blur, let the battle st- “STOP THIS INSTANT!” and everyone does stop. “YOU MORONS! Can’t you see that Rumia is one of my friends? How dare you!?” because Cirno immediately scolds them again, the moment she realizes it was you that so rudely intruded.

You’re still not stopping; however, in fact you continue flying. With a big dumb frown on your face too, or whatever facial expression shows both confusion and irritation and a sense for the dramatic.

Whatever that face is, you’re showing it as you close the distance between you and her kingliness.
She doesn’t seem to realize the meaning of said face, for her own smile becomes wider. “Ah, Rumia. What a pleasure to see you here! Have you come all the way here just to witness my time to shine?” she references something you’ve got no context for but looks genuinely happy to see your presence.

Again, you’re just showing her the face. Then you cross your arms, and you calmly ask her. “Did you plan all of this?” before giving her yet another dose of the face, to show how serious you are.

“Psh, you look like an inflated frog with a face like that.” But it has no effect, she simply thinks you’re being silly or something, bet. Or maybe, she’s pretending to not understand what you’re saying? That could be true, after all if she’s a mastermind then she could simply be doing the unexpected things that you could not have expected to ever expect within your expectations of things!

“Answer the question, are you or are you not the mastermind of all this?” you reply more precisely.

“Nah, wait I mean yes! Or no, hold on this is a trick question, isn’t it? If so then yes, the answer is definitely yes!” again she doesn’t answer (Well she did, but you don't think that right there counts as an actual confession.). “But anyway, if you’re asking about what I’m doing right now, then I’d love to tell you!” again, that’s the truth. “BUT!” she raises one finger, then extends it to a hand as she kind of points to everyone else. “We’re in the middle of a meeting right now, so why don’t you take a seat. Wait for it to be over and afterwards you and me can do whatever the heck I feel like doing? Yeah, you go sit right now.”

[X] Refuse: I don’t have that kind of time and you want answers RIGHT THIS INSTANT!
[X] Accept: Sigh, I'm a master of wasting time anyway, what's a few more minutes for a friend?
[X] Redirect: You’re not even asking me how I’m doing? Isn’t that a bit rude of you?

Lots of updates incoming after this one, well right after this one. Cause it's going to be a gigantic speech she's gonna give.

Anyway here's your options for now, you can either refuse and maybe it'll be seen as you undermining her in front of everybody else which may force her to beat the shit out of you. Or you could accept and be seen as a little sponge to everybody which means they won't respect you and any attempt at asking real questions may be waived away. Or you could redirect the conversation, which may lead nowhere at all if she doesn't react the way you want her to.

Why are all those negative? Oh, they're really not. I just enjoy the occasional doubt coming in your mind.
So go ahead and vote, I shall wait warmly and after one more post it'll be time for the big big update.
Well to be speficic, if you just accept then I can do it immediately but if you don't then there's one more update and then it happens. Unless you decide to off the rails right here and right now, anyway I'll be waiting for it.
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[X] Accept: Sigh, I'm a master of wasting time anyway, what's a few more minutes for a friend?

Yeah, I'll bite. I want to see what this bigg update is.
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[X] Accept: Sigh, I'm a master of wasting time anyway, what's a few more minutes for a friend?

What’s a few more minutes? What isn’t a few more minutes?! Do you seriously think you have the time to fool around like this when your very own death is just a few hours anyway? Is that time not important?

That’s just stupid!

Super dumb even!

Stupid-dumb!

But then you remember that you’ve got no 100% confirmation that you’re about to hit the bucket either.
Because of the stuff from earlier.
Still every second that passes right now feels like an opportunity that may waste away if you don’t do anything to make use of it instead of saying…Just sitting there like a joe!

You’re not sure if you’re making much sense right now but doing nothing.
Just taking a seat and waiting for some miracle to happen just isn’t something you can do right now.
You cannot stay still any longer.
You’ve done so much nothing that it’s a recurring nothing by now. You’ve got no past you remember, no future to look forward to and have done nothing noteworthy up til now to the point that doing nothing is basically your main talent at this point and that’s…

UNACCEPTABLE!

“I’m going to say no to that, why don’t you talk while I just stand here? I’ll be sure to listen patiently!” you respond to Cirno’s offer instead, not telling her to shut up because it’s both rude and unnecessary yet ready to interfere if the information she’s gonna give proves useless.


Cirno gives you a single blink “Eh, that works too. But I’m only making an exception for you, so you better be grateful!” she adds in a shrug as if to say it can’t be helped, then points a finger in the air with a smile “Now, GET READY FOR THE ANNOUNCEMENT!” she raises her kingly rod in the air, as if it’s supposed to do something.

It doesn’t, she just stands there for a moment same pose and all as if she’s awaiting something but you’r-

The sound of a bell is heard, ding and dong and all that stuff, get to the point.
That cynical thought is the last thing you think before the surroundings distort again, like a puzzle piece that was replaced with another piece from another box of puzzles entir…you suck at metaphors.

Either way you’ve changed locations again, there!

Not, you’re still in the same place after all. It’s just the outlook that’s different now.

The boring, archaic and oh so cliché castle-like insides of Cirno’s ‘throne room’ has transformed into a golden hall filled to the brim with snowflake like pillars, beyond which lies a dark void. In the middle of said hall, is still you and everyone else. All seated-on ice statues of humanoid designs. The ceiling of the room is just…not there and instead at the top lies what you can only describe as, what you can only describe as a gigantic ball, blue like the ocean and adorned with white stripes like the sky. Alongside are some stars with lines that resemble creatures wh-oh wait, those are just the constellations!

Finally, before you lie Cirno again, the throne she’s seated on completely intact and behind is a gigantic wall of ice, inside which you swear you can see some sort of figure inside but can’t get a better look. Why can’t you? Simple, that’s because she’s about to talk again.

“Now then, everyone. I’m sure you’re all asking why you’ve been summoned here today.” Cirno starts off her speech with a smile on both her face and in her mouth. Still seated at her throne like she’s the king of the world and how she’s probably going to blab on about how cool she believes herself to be.

“Well, it’s a funny story….” the wall behind lights up and one can see a figure of her on it, though the muscles on it are overly exaggerated and so is the pointy chin on her and so is honestly everything. Is she really going to make some show about how she’s oh so cool? You were just being a snarky witch about that. “You see, in my many years as the strongest fairy who defiles the gods. “

Her words, not yours, but let’s stop interrupting her. She hasn’t said anything too bad so far, so keep the snark and all that stuff for later.

“I’ve met many fools, many annoying or otherwise stupid doo-doo heads who all refused to acknowledge my awesomeness even though I knew for a fact that they were beneath me. However, in your case, my servants. I find your company quite enjoyable, in fact I’d like to say that I’m happy to have you all working for me…. but that could all change.”

“You see as soon to be the new Overlord Supreme. I’ve got many challenged that are laid before me, for this world is filled with stupid-dumbs that would love nothing more than to prevent my glorious ascension. Hence, I have all of you here to help me, my lovely, loyal, friendly, little fairy friends. You’re my little hands, my little eyes, and the ones that just like me are easily overlooked to the faults of the stupid.

And again, not to sound mushy. But you’ve all done a great job, a wonderful job even. So many people have now felt the touch of Anonymous and that’s all again thanks to you all, for many people would never touch a thing let alone use it. Not knowing the fate of what would befall them would remove such bravery…. WE THOUGHT. But as it turns out, people love to touch stuff even if it’s bad! Who’s the idiot now huh? That’s right! It’s them! Pfhahahaha!”

As she does the most cliché evil laugh to have ever been heard, your chest tightens a bit once you hear the dreaded word: Anonymous.

That word alone should be enough to incriminate her, if not make her your enemy…but a part of you hopes that her next words will explain that perhaps she’s just being manipulated to do their bidding or something that could justify not having to lose yet another friend.

It’s cowardly but shut up. What kind of person would want to be friend-less after the worst kind of adventure? Not you, that’s who.

“And honestly who can understand that? Why, one of our most recent targets had her arms and legs turn into new, cheesy, sauce, with a little bit of salami on it, pizza pieces. Cause it was a pizza! It was funny, but you know I could not tell which was melting more, her skin or the cheese on the pizza." She pauses for a moment, as if waiting for laughter.

Nobody is laughing.

"Hmph, fine. Don't laugh your lungs out, anyway we all know how the drill works here so let me tell you all why you’re here. See, here’s the thing with incidents. It’s exactly like a pizza, it has many different crusts, many different sauces, and many ways to make one. In fact, some of the bests are made at random! For you see if you look at the menu. Then you might make the mistake of just taking whatever you feel, I for one often feel mischievous and so I choose sometimes anchovies. Picturing the little things as frogs hopping on the pizza, squirming for their lives as they are thrown into the can for me to heat or freeze as I please, mwahahaha!” yet another laugh comes out of her and despite her words everyone present starts to slowly relax a bit. Except for you.

“Oh, but now it’s time for the real deal. I have ordered you all countless times to make sure that the pizza goes right, that it’s neither too hot nor too cold but some of you morons DECIDED TO MESS IT ALL UP!” her sudden scream catches them by surprise, but she continues. “SOME OF YOU, messed up so bad it really makes me wonder why I haven’t frozen them yet? Because honestly come on now? What is a pizza everyone? It’s just a pie with meat and sauce on it? So how did some up you not only mess up the spreading off the house but also made it so that….”

The screen behind shows another figure instead now, or to be specific. The screen shows a map, a map that's...constantly having it's layout change, with one exception. The three red dots from far far away that are approaching your current location.

“THE STUPID SHRINE MAIDEN IS COMING FOR OUR DOUGH!” the red-white one she means. “THAT. SHOULD. NOT. BE. POSSIBLE.” And it’s safe to say she’s not happy about it. “We’ve got the perfect hidden base in the middle of nowhere, we’ve done absolutely nothing note-worthy and now our plan of waiting for everyone to infight just to swoop in and kick everybody’s asses once they’re weak and tired has been ruined, all of it has been ruined, by the idiocy of one of you.

So tell me, which one of you has alerted the Hakurei of our plan? Which one of you has made it so that the Hakurei is approaching our location at a rapid pace? WHICH ONE OFF YOU SCREWED THIS UP? LOOK AT THE MAP, WHY DOES IT SAY SHE MANAGED TO ENTER THIS WORLD HUUUH?” Cirno waves her rod around furiously, stomping her boots on the ground and honestly does not look intimidating at all.

Also, nobody answers, because why would they? You’re not sure if you’re related to this in any way but even so you wouldn’t say anything. And everybody else surely feels the same. Hence the awkward silence.

Cirno looks over everyone with a frown, then lets out a sigh. “Fine, none of you are talking huh? Well, that’s okay. Maybe none of you did anything? Maybe none of you are a spy? Is that what you wanted to hear? Because too bad! I have just the perfect solution.”

She points at some other fairy to the left side of the stage “Activate the truth-laser!” and you’ve got no idea what she’s talking abou-oh.
Never mind, the truth laser is just…well, not there at all.

“Oh, I don’t have a laser.” Cirno gives herself a knock on the head, as if she was just being silly. Then straightens up again. “But STILL, one of your gremlins is a shady, sneaky, SPY and I will not have my secret plans of overtaking this whole thing once nobody pays attention and become the total conqueror of the world be stopped that easily!”

Then she turns to you, with a wave of her hand. “But even so, I am pleased to say that one of my favourite servants has come to visit-

And every little bit of your patience vanishes right then, sure you’ve listened to her ramble on and on about…whatever this is. But there’s still no answer! “….”
So, you head up on the podium, while she’s still talking.

“Me! Of course, that’s natural and I would expect nothing less than such devo…” she notices you approach. “Uh, I’m still talking here! You can’t just walk up on…oh what’s with your face? Do you feel sick Rumia?” and she has finally started to notice the ‘expression’.
A bit too late, for you’re now in kill absolutely everyone ranges.

Not that you would, never in a million’s way no, a maybe for the others. But ahem.
You grab your good old friend by the shoulder, “Cirno….” You feel Really close to just leaving this place or demanding what everybody knows but still, despite everything. You stay calm. “I’m tired of this.” Or to be more precise, you feel completely fed up with all this.

“What?” She replies, mild curiosity on her face about what you mean, yet still that unshakeable smug look is still on her. “If you’re tired, then don’t worry. We’ve got the be- “you don’t let her finish that.

“I’m tired of everything, of THIS and THAT. Do you get me?” her face shows that she doesn’t, so you continue reluctantly. “Look, I’m sure you’re having the time of your life and that’s fine but…do you have any idea how my past days have been?”

“I, uh? Did something bad happen?” that’s a no, you think.

May as well explain everything “You ever wake up one day to find out your best friend’s dead, your other friend is missing and you’ve become some sort of chainsaw abomination that’s going to go insane if not die within an ridiculous short amount of time that could be in 6 hours or maybe never depending on whoever’s words you choose to believe but you can’t tell which one is right?”
“I, hm, Don’t really see ho- “then you’ll make her understand.

“A shame because really, even after this adventure. I think I’m going to have nightmares about this day for a long, long time. BUT STILL, I can cope with that, or more like, repress the bad thoughts until the job is done yknow? One can be sad once work time is over and all that, which frankly is not a time I’m looking up to, for I’ve realized that my whole existence so far has been nothing more than meaningless do this and do that’s on whimsies that will never make me as grand as the darkness I devote myself to properly embody. Not only that, do you know how cheated I feel right now? I thought this adventure was going to be a fun if not a bit morbid tale of me flying around and eating, maiming outsiders on like…. funny ways maybe? I dunno why I thought that, but the whole mac and cheese outsider gave me that impression and honestly, I feel cheated, one hundred percent cheated.”

“Okay, okay! Slow down, you’re talking too f- “

“But, that was not the worst of all things. I could continue despite that, I have continued despite all that, despite knowing nothing, despite feeling like I’m the worst, despite knowing I’m wasting my time and that literally anyone else should be taking care of this. I have continued to try, again and again. And do you know the reason why?”

“STOP, TALKING, OVER. ME.” You don’t think she’s understanding anything if nothing else you just annoyed her. “I don’t know what you’re talking about when you talk like that! So slow down and try a- “
“DO. YOU. KNOW. WHY. I’M. DOING. THIS?”

“I. DO. NOT! Also stop crying, that’s not manly!”

“I DID IT FOR YOU! FOR YOU AND ALL MY FRIENDS! AND A SLICE OF VENGEA-auh- “your voice breaks, but you continue talking. “I…. hoped that after this…nonsense, I could go get all my friends, celebrate a party together and enjoy our time together like a real happy ending…” you continue. “BUT NOW, here I am standing before you. Having finally found you, only for you to boldly claim right in my face that you’re somehow involved in all this? Was this somehow your grand plan? Did you do this? Are you anonymous? Are you working for anonymous? If any of those answers are yes, then…”

“Then…what?” Cirno rises to meet you face-level, seeing your trail-off as a sort of challenge, dear god. Sometimes you hate her denseness. “What are you going to do huh? I’m the Overlord friend! The strongest there is and the strongest to be! Soon, nobody could ever beat me! So, what are you going to do huh? Finish that challenge, I dare you!”

With a heavy heart, you do so. “I want answers, this instant or else…”

[X] You’ll become just one of the many obstacles in my way. And I don’t want that, but if I have to, I will beat you to a pulp Cirno.


[X] I’ll quit, fuck this, fuck you, I’ll go home, let someone else handle this incident and I will want to never see your face again once you lose.


[X] Nothing, I-just…just come home with me, okay? Please, I beg you.
Look, I can forgive your…thing if you just explain everything, okay?



Update got delayed due to personal reasons, but also non personal like...the fact that writing an entire info-dump just feels heavy. So here's one more update where you can decide what'll happen next and whether or not you'll get your info and stuff. Can't give it for no reason after all!
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Well, this got emotional. It looks like it will continue to be so, too.

[X] You’ll become just one of the many obstacles in my way. And I don’t want that, but if I have to, I will beat you to a pulp Cirno.

Especially when I do this. Cirno killed Wriggle! You bastard!
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[X] You’ll become just one of the many obstacles in my way. And I don’t want that, but if I have to, I will beat you to a pulp Cirno.

"How cute.” Cirno shrugs with both of her shoulders, seeing nothing but hot water in your words. “Haven’t you heard a thing I said? I’m the Overlord baby, the soon to be ruler of the whole wide world.” And boasts yet again, then pushes herself off you. “But anyway, I didn’t really listen to what you were saying. But....if you had a sad day then go ahead and rest for now, I’ve got bigger girls to freeze, lands to take over and many things to do right now and hey, time is important!” she ends the sentence with an overly flashy move of her hands, ending it with a pat on your head and then starts walking past you.

You don’t let her, there’s no way you’ll let her leave with so many answers so easily. “…you never answered my question, do you or do you not work for anonymous?” so you speak even through your throat hurts, you demand to know the truth “I must know, tell me or I WILL force it out of you…”

“Huh, again. I don’t think you’ll do that.” Cirno is again not convinced. “I’ve seen you fight after all, sure. You’re no pushover but when it comes to having to face someone you like, you may as well be jello! So even if we fought it’d be just me beating you up very easily and that’s no challenge.”

Her words ring true, your ‘battle’ with Daiyousei just earlier today is a prime example of that.

“Right now, is an exception!” you want to shout in her face, but instead it comes out as a raspy. “…right-…I’ll do it, if need be, this time.” And even you can tell that with that kind of voice, that kind of voice and those kind of tears in your eyes, only one thing is conveyed: That you look weak as hell.

“Then do it already, I know you won’t.” Cirno puts her arms on her sides and points a single finger at you, as if to announce she’s waiting for body-posture. “And even then, you can’t possibly harm me.” And she confirms it herself: she’s waiting for the first punch, which is your privilege to throw.

…There’s no talking this out with her, she’s only making you more confused by the second, a second that you can’t afford to waste either. Therefore, you only have once choice now….

You must fight her. You must fight her with everything you got, you don’t know why but there’s a painful gut that if you don’t take this seriously then you’ll regret it for the rest of your short life.

And by seriously, you mean aim to kill serious. You’re going to have to really hurt her, but…

“You done standing there and doing nothing?” Cirno quips back, as if she has the right to be bored. “I’ve got a bigger threat to take care off, so if you don’t want to do this. Then go sit somewhere and we’ll play later.” and even she doesn't seem aware of your internal strife, it's like...all of this is just a game to her? you don't know, you can't make sense off it. But it's still Cirno right?

Can you do that? Can you genuinely, when you look deep inside of yourself, genuinely bring yourself to harm someone who’ve you’ve known for most of your life? Can you harm your friend?

That same friend who you've had snow-ball fights with, that same friend who you've played hide and seek with.
That same friend, who no matter how high or low the day is. Would always be there if somebody needs her?

Can you put those feelings aside, just this once?

[X] The answer is no, but you’re going to have to do it anyway.

[X] The answer is no, there must be another way.
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[X] The answer is no, there must be another way.

Surely there's always another way? This is Rumia's own desire to not hurt a friend. We cannot hurt Rumia in this way.
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[X] The answer is no, there must be another way.



You look down in frustration as your body refuses to move.

What a weak body.

You just can’t do it, no matter what her role is in all this, she’s still your friend so you cannot
muster the will within yourself to cause her harm.

What a pathetic resolve.

But what else can you do? She’s not the type to just say okay if you were to say something like ‘stop doing this bad thing!’ if anything that’s just an excuse for a fun fight to her, because fighting IS fun.

You’re just being a coward, like you’ve always been.

But…there must be a way, right? There must be something you can do here, right? At least you could try to something right? But what exactly?

You could go home if this is too hard for you, you could always just stop you know? Sure, that would be anti-climatic but were you supposed to be here in the first place? Why are you here anyway?

Those details do matter even if you try not to sweat at what you don’t understand. But that’s the thing, isn’t it? All of this is so beyond you.

“Hey, you’re being awful quiet now…” Cirno interrupts your inner musing before it can grow too large. “So, what’s it going to be?” she waits for a response, but you just stay quiet and keep your head down, still unsure about what to exactly say. “Guess that’s a no.” Cirno concludes for you instead, her arms cross to show off disappointment. “Oh, man. That’s such a boring answer though and here I was looking forward to showing off all the awesome stuff I can do now….” With her interest in you lost, she turns around with a dramatic cape flourish. “Fine! be that way! I’ve got bigger fries to take care off anyway!”

“BUT FIRST!” she does another flourish, then points at the screen again. “We’ve got like…like 5 minutes, before our dear intruders arrive and while I’d love to let them come our way so that I can beat them up after a little speech about how amazing I am….”

The screen changes the view to the tower itself.
Or to be more specific, all the weapons on it.
You know the big, overly comical big shooty shooties on it.
The kind that could shoot an explosive whale out of it to nuke a country if not a place smaller than that…like maybe a mountain?

“What kind of girl doesn’t play with her toys? It’d be such a loss to NOT use the massive boom booms we have now, don’t we?” Cirno stands before everyone with a smile, as if she finds herself clever. Nobody’s laughing. “Oh, don’t laugh your asses out. But anyway…what are you all waiting for?” that question wasn’t for you, it’s for the whole crowd of weird critters.

“What do you want us to do mate?” one of them asks, you see why nobody else dare talk first, because they get impaled by sharp piles of ice that rise from the ground beneath them within an instant.

“Nope, also wrong answer! Remember that incompetence is awarded with death.” The thing is still moving though, with some ease even as if it didn’t get impaled in the gut but rather got stuck on a tree branch. Then it gets impaled again by even more stalactites and finally stops moving. Cirno clicks her tongue at the sight. “Is what I would say if you chumps weren’t so resilient~” and she-

“BOOSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!” she gets interrupted by another entry, one which you would recognize as one of the things you talked to before entering if you had a better memory or overall weren’t…well you. “We got tricked by an intruder! But it’s not my fault, she just looked a l-oh, SHE’S RIGHT THERE IN FRONT OF YOU! EVERYONE GET HER ASSS!” without catching a break, the thing charges at you with a ferocity so-

Easily undone by Cirno putting an ice-wall in front of you, then she calmly flies over to the thing once it’s smashed their head against the hard surface and picks them up by the neck. “Kind of a late announcement, don’t you think? Sure, you remembered to come back now of all times but geez, are you a moron or what?”

The thing looks flustered by that comment and gets ready to defend themselves but decides not to at the last moment. “I’m sorry, mate. It was an honest mistake. But I’m not only there for that, but mate also!”

“What ARE you here for then?”

“There’s more intruder’s mate! In like the horizon, like tiny dots that are coming sup- “they don’t finish the sentence, as their whole body is frozen in an instant and shatters into tiny little pieces of ice cubes.

“I already know all that.” Cirno looks fed up immediately. “Now, get out again and do...whatever guards do, go on get lost!”

Again, they are now little pieces of ice cubes.

“Oh, you’re dead…well go do the job once you come back then!” And Cirno continues where she left off, as if this didn’t happen. “Now where was I? Oh yeah, what kind of girl doesn’t play with her toys? Not me and believe it, these toys are capable of quite the boom!” she returns to her throne, moves her rod again and a small table rises out of the ground: It’s got a fruit-vase on it and nothing else. So naturally, she picks up the banana and puts it close to her ear. “Shooty Shooty Center uh, whatever the name was! This is your amazing Overlord! It’s time for us to use the Big Boom again…yes….no, I don’t want the small boom, I want the Biggest Boom we have! What do you mean you don’t get what I’m saying? I’m saying I want the thing that goes ZUUUUUUUUH as it charges and then goes KAAAAASHLIIIIIIIIIING when it hits stuff all awesomely and freezes everything like its winter!” she’s…talking to it, as if it’s a communicator.

“I don’t care if there’s risk of it overheating, I want another shot and I want it now!” and now she seems to be demanding something…. uh, that’s not good? Not good.

“What…are you doing right now?” you weakly ask. Screw that. You get up…well you’re already standing but ahem, you stand your ground, raise your voice, and say loud and clear. “Cirno, listen to me!” except not because your voice broke just earlier, so it comes out as “Cirno…listen…to meuugh.” all croaky and gas-like, it’s a pain really.

“Hm? What do you want?” she heard you alright. “I’m in the middle of something here, so you just wait a minute and then we’ll t- “

“NO!” you stand your ground again, even if it’s just stomping your foot and saying. “…no.” you still must do this, so you continue before she can respond again. “Look, I don’t know what you’re doing here…why you’re even here…or why you’re even doing the things that you’re doing…I’m really lacking a lot of info on like everything to be honest but none of that changes the fact that you’re my friend…one of the bests I’ve had even. So uh, stop this bad thing please?” okay, that wasn’t the best speech ever, but you tried it.

“Well, you’re just rude… Ahem, never mind my order. I’ll call back later!” Cirno puts down the banana to look you eye to eye with a displeased expression. “But yeah, we’re buds. Now and always.” She nods once to confirm that. “What do you mean by bad thing though?”

What…you look at her face, there’s no sarcasm or irony in there. “Do…do I have to spell out what’s wrong with all of this? Seriously?”

“It’d be a lot less vague than the way you’re talking right now, yeah.”

Fine. “EVERYTHING.” Wait, that IS vague. You think about your words some more. “Uh, well first off. That whole talk about boom booms, pizzas and the whole goon gallery here really creeps me out.”

“Can’t help that one, I’m not the one who chose the aesthetic. Those other higher up bozos did like the bunch of edgy try-hards they are. What else?” oh, she’s listening. A bit dismissively but listening regardless!
“…Then who did?”

“That’s a long story, but first off hurry up with what you want. I’ve got people to BOOOM and once they are BOOMED, we can talk some more.”

“...This whole anonymous thing is not fun, if not outright morbid the way it works. There’s no stage music, no stage bosses and not even a fun gimmick for everyone to enjoy. Is this even an incident?” you sound more like someone who’s complaining at a lobby but that doesn’t change the fact you feel like you’re in the right here. “Because if it is, then it’s a bad one. And whoever made this happen musts be a bad person too, so why do you work with them? You’re better t- “

“I don’t need you to tell me what I already am: awesome!” Cirno interrupts you, then looks at her own wrist as if there was a watch on it, there isnt. “But eeeeh, you’re not saying anything that makes sense. Just whining. If only you had the bigger picture like I do, then you’d understand what this is.”
“…Then make me understand? Go on then, spill your secrets.”

“Hmm, I don’t know. What’s the magic word? Hmmm?”

“…Tell me what this is about…pretty please.”

“Okay! Unplug your ears, ready those ear drums. Because I’m going to tell everything you need to know on how I became the amazing Overl-

“With all due respect, mate. “Another…you’ve called them critters, fairies and whatever’s so far but you don’t have a real name for them thing interrupts the conversation. “The intruders have crossed half the distance by now.” Because talking is NOT a free action. “Do we engage them or not? Do we use the automatic defence system or not? Do we just let them enter or not? Please make your decision already, mate.”

“Hey, I was in the middle of so- “

“Uh…do all of them!” Cirno decides on the spot. “Use the defences and if that doesn’t work then attack them yourselves and if that doesn’t work then we’ll Big Boom then and if that doesn’t work then I guess they’ll have to deal with me! There, that’s an easy strategy!”

“I SAID, I wasn’t done tal- “

“Uh, boss. Not that I think you forgot but at this point, if you don’t shoot them with the Arctic Circle right now, then we could suffer the risk of being in the…ridiculously large explosion range and like, die?”

“Oh, so I’m just being ignored now huh?” Fine, you’ll wait.

“I KNEW THAT!” the oh so amazing Overlord huffs at their words but doesn’t impale them on the spot like she did the others. “Hmm, fine. How long until we can blast them out of the sky then?”

“…how would I know? Call the engineers and find out yourself, mate.”

“Hold on, was that backtalk just now servant?”

“No? N-NO! of course not! I’m sure you were going to do so already!”

“Good, you live for now then.” That said, Cirno goes ahead and picks the banana up again.
“Overlord to shooty shoo-you know what I’m not doing this, hey suckers! How long until I get to use the BIG BOOM?

Oh, I can do so right now? But what about the overheating stuff? Oh, so that’s still an issue huh? It’ll have a 25% chance of just blowing us up instead of them huh. Well, I love a gamble! Get ready for launch!”

You don’t like the sound of that, maybe you should speak up now. “I- “

Of course you don’t get to finish that sentence, because the tower rumbles like you’re inside a washing machine (Don’t ask how you got that info) and something from the ceiling lowers to the ground…at a snail’s pace but eventually it reaches the front of Cirno’s throne.

Said thing is a massive, disgusting, mix and match between a red beating heart with crystal-like features adorning it. On top of it lies a humongous gun the shape of which is…you honestly cannot tell, the whole thing is squirming continuously and changing shapes every time you blink. One second it looks like a straight cannon with an icicle symbol on it and the next it shows a face of something vaguely humanoid. It takes over 3/4th of the place just by being here and has forced you to move closer to Cirno’s throne on which she’s seated herself and for some of the rest to leave the room outright. So now, it’s just you, Cirno and around five more individuals in the room right now.

“Hey, you might want to step back some more.” Cirno calls out to you, as she seats herself right on top of the thing for some reason. “The knockback is going to be massive so unless you’re standing right behind or above it, the sheer force might just kill you. So come here and sit next to me already. Don’t be shy, you’re going to get a first seat view about what happens to those who try to oppose me!”

Great, your indecision has allowed the situation to escalate…not. Just because you don’t want to fight “...Okay, give me a sec. “that doesn’t mean you have to sit back, gaze at your navel and be useless! Never!

It takes only a second for you to get next to her. But to your dismay, the two chairs…if they can be called that are clearly made off some red warm leather that looks and feels too like real flesh. Cirno’s isn’t bothered by it, but you can’t tell what could even bother her right now. That said, right in front of her lies an actual panel with buttons and levers and stuff like that. To be specific you see four similar coloured buttons on the right side, all a shade of blue. Two levers in the middle of the thing and two pedals beneath them for the feet and finally four arrow-shaped buttons on the left side off the thing. Finally, finally you see two shiny red buttons on the upper layer that say: Shoot for one and Self-Destruct for the other. No idea why the latter exists though.

“You done admiring my amazing weapon?” Cirno, being right next to you and all. Has naturally noticed your ogling the whole thing. “Because if you’re done, then sit still and enjoy the show!” after that shout Cirno puts one of her feet at the pedal, forcing the whole thing to slowly turn around to face the ice-sheet wall. Said wall moves out of the way and the gun points outside of the tower with quite the ease.

Said outside is still a blue dessert by the way, you don’t see anyone or anything in the far-distance but since it’s aimed this way you can only assume that slowly and surely the Hakurei is making her over here.

You wonder what’s going to happen if she does arrive, she’d probably exterminate the both of you since you’re on some weapon right now d’uh. Maybe you could reason with her though? You’re sure that regardless of what happens, she’ll probably be fine since she’s…

We all know what the Hakurei’s like, losing is impossible for her.

And she’s coming this way, so your bud Cirno has already lost.

Speaking of Cirno she presses another button and whole thing starts making odd noises. “It’s gathering energy, just so you know.” Cirno answers the question. “Afterwards it needs some time to aim properly at the right direction and then it’ll be Big Boom time, it isn’t the first time I used this so don’t worry too much. Well, this will be the first on a moving target though! But hey, I’ve never missed a single shot so far!”

You don’t answer that, even if you want to say, “But haven’t you shot this thing only once?” you’re in no mood for humour. If anything, you’re not sure what your mood is other than a bad one, because seriously what is the meaning of all this? Who gave Cirno all this stuff?
Is she seriously about to use a massive weapon just to get rid of like two or three people? You think she is, no you know she will! That is…
If you don’t do anything about it.

But should you? What could you possibly accomplish here? You don’t know anything therefore you can’t…you shouldn’t think like that, no.
You should try and do something anyway, just to be useful.
You don’t know if anyone could take a blast from…this and if that’s the case then you may regret having done nothing for the rest of your life.
But Cirno is your friend…though she’s acting very different than usual.
She wouldn’t want to use a weapon, because she is the weapon!
Also the blatant cruelty, she’s never acted like that before on purpose!
Or maybe that's wistful thinking, you don't know. Ignorant as usual.

Anyway, you should do something. But what should you do?

[X] Distract her: Ask for her motives this instant and hope she’ll monoblob.
[X] Wrestle her: You’re not going to hurt her, but you won’t let her hurt other people either.
[X] Press the self-destruct button: Worst idea ever made, still acted on.
[X] Talk to her: Blowing people up is like...not a good thing to do!
[X] Do nothing: Even worse idea, but maybe everything will be fine.

Or something else, write in if you want.

Update done and boom.
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[x] Cirno, this incident you caused killed Wriggle. Wriggle is dead because of you. Do you even care at all?
-[x] if she shows no remorse, hit self destruct

Friends don’t let friends kill other friends and get away with it.
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bla bla bla
You stare your old friend down, in a place that’s constantly shifting, odd, bizarre and a stranger to you. Seated on a device half-machine and half flesh, who’s shine is off a sickly blue pale, the touch of the seat under you is too soft and sticky and there’s a sensation of something pumping in a rhythm.

The sky inside was wrong and artificial and the sky outside was no better, you could deal with it if it wasn’t for a vapid stench that covers the entire area. Like rotten fruit, sweet yet disgusting yet nobody seemed to notice it and neither did you until you took a large deep breath of frustration.

Frustration because you don’t know what to do right now, it’s a recurring yet annoying feeling.

You’ve never been a person of the tongue, the kind of gal that can move mountains and make people change their individual ways with nothing more than a sweet smile and sugary words.

Mostly because knowing how to live in a place that’s hot during summer, super cold during winter and filled to the brim with poisonous plants and hostile creatures all seasons tends to make speech a dump stat compared to survival and intimidation. Not to forget talking at all to solve problems is mostly something humans and the weak do, cause why bother asking if you can just take?

Is what you would have said way back…as in just yesterday. But things are different now.

Turns out that speech may not be that useless after all. Especially when you live in a world where about everybody understands the things you say regardless of where you came from. Or when you’re in a situation in which you don’t want to use violence which although rare at times is also a situation in which you’re finding yourself right now, because there is someone you don’t want to hurt.

That person being the one right next to you, wearing a cool smile and brimming with confidence. And who also has a weird tower thingy who’s right now aiming some sort of unholy fusion of a flesh-gun towards the middle of nowhere but that’s not important right now.

She’s staring off into the distance, as if waiting to get a visual before taking the shot, excitement in her eyes as said before as in the kind of hell yeah, the ice cream man arrived let me have some! the kind that’s looking forward to something fun and amazing and has an innocence behind it that’s painful to look at.

You stare at her nose instead, the expression on your face stuck in a bizarre mixture of a mad smile and hard to withhold growl. The utter opposite of how she’s feeling. “Cirno…I have a question for you! Why are you doing all of this?!” unable to hold back, you almost spit the question in her ear, not caring for your proximity and only wanting answers.

“First off, ouch and ew…” Cirno gently pushes you back “Don’t spit in my ear and don’t speak so loudly, I’m sitting right next to you!” afterwards she lets out a snort “Is this really the time to be asking that though? I’m about to show you a sight you won’t ever forget but first you want to talk? How bo- “

“Answer me!” you snarl as you interrupt her, the confusion inside you being slowly replaced with annoyance and said annoyance being replaced by anger eventually…why do you talk like this? To say such a generic thing and to describe it in such a boring way…it’s like you’re too tired to try.

“Hmm…” Cirno removes her hands from the aiming device and puts them behind her own head like a pillow to lean on while thinking. “Again, that’s one boring question. ‘Why are you doing this?’ is such a cliché line, couldn’t you have asked ‘What sinister plot have you planned!’ or ‘Why do you sit on the throne of this strange place!’ Sure, it means the same thing, but it’s the delivery that matters.”

“Just answer the question.” You reply harshly, in no mood to accept her acting playful with insults you and she know don't really hurt because you're that close, instead wanting to shout at her, but you don’t. Knowing that if you did, then she’d shout back, and a fight would happen with all potential info gone. And because you don’t want to fight at all, but you’ve already confirmed that to yourself.

’Just answer the question’ is no better, come oooon, I’m letting you be a quest (It’s guest not quest, but correcting her midway would only irritate her) here so the least you can do is entertain the overlord! Question my sanity, threaten me. That’s a classic. Maybe you could brag about your feeble accomplishments to get all the way here only to be surprised that I’m sitting here. That I might humble you! Yes, do that. And then once you decide to work for me, I’ll pick up like a sword, put it around your shoulder for a second and make you, my knight! And then we’re going to do lots of more fun stuff! Starting by adding yet another trio to the fridge!”

Again, she’s not answering the question, and, in another time, you would have asked the question yet again to no use, only to ask yet again and then to be suddenly interrupted by the arrival of someone else. You can already predict how the conversation is going to go at this point and see that if it continues like this, then eventually one of you two will get frustrated and violence will come.

That’s how most of your conversations go with anybody, both people say some lines, annoy one another and a battle happens to solve things with bullets that words could not change.

Nearly every conversation. But in this one, you break that nigh-omnipresent social cycle with a simple sentence.
“…This incident killed Wriggle, so if you’re responsible for all this then you may as well have done that yourself. Not only that but I’m going to hit the bucket too, is that something you care about?”

“And our path shall be filled with power, glory, free meals, a theme park called Cirnoland and… … … wait, what?” Cirno says in surprise.

“Some monster-slime thingy disguised as Alice swallowed her whole or something and I put my hands on some chainsaw that tried to dominate my mind and is now slowly but surely corrupting my body. I’ve already said this, and you didn’t seem to care, so I’m asking again: Did you murder us Cirno?”

“A… wait, a disguised as what?”

“A monster slime thingy that was disguised as Alice?”

“Like… like… it’s a slime that stole her clothes and pretended to be her?”

“Oh, I wish that’s what it meant.”

“So you’re something… that someone did…that that form is for…”

“Oh, yeah.”

“And they did that to…”

Ooooh, yeah.”

“But… I mean…but that’s not part of the plan, we’re supposed to take over! Not eat!”

“What did you think someone who I assume gave you a cannon made of flesh and corrupted a bunch of fairies and encouraged the putting of innocent-looking death traps around would do?”

“I was told I was going to take over the world and make it more fun! Not the thing you said! I have standards you know. What’s the point of taking over a world if there’s nobody to rule over?”

“…” You’ve got no context, but that sentence alone replaces a single tiny droplet of your immense anger with tired disappointment. “You’ve got a story to tell but answer these two questions first: Who exactly told you that? And why exactly did you listen? I swear to everything if you’re lying about being tricked…WHICH I highly think you may not be…I…why are you in this?” you don’t finish the sentence, having already decided to take whatever she’s about to say with a massive grain of salt.

“Well, they… seemed trustworthy.”

WHO seemed trustworthy?”

“The voices in my head! I’ll have to talk to them at our next meeting about this though!”

“….” No, you won’t simply dismiss it as insanity. You’ve been hearing voices a lot today too. “And what are the names of the voices that told you to maybe murder people that aren’t us?”

“I DID NOT murder anyone!” she says having disposed of two people right in front of you just earlier, though maybe they’re not people to her. “And oh, about the name stuff, that’s the thing. They don’t have one. And uh, when you don’t have a name, you are anonymous right? I guess you could also call them ‘The Many’ but I like to call them Mission Control cause that’s cool.”

“…So, are you going to explain what you’re doing here or what? You’re saying things sure, but this is going to take all day if I have to prod an answer out of you after every single sentence.”

“Watch your mouth mong-oh wait, you’re not my servant yet ahem. Watch your mouth bud, we may be pals but even I won’t tolerate being disrespected in the king’s tower that is mine, cause I’m- “

“I don’t care what you are right now, just start giving me something that makes all of this make sense!”

“Not if you talk like that, this is my home and so it’s my rules, so you better respect my kingship!”

“FINE, king, god, queen, be the bumbling pope if you want that title! Just talk already PRETTY PLEASE”

“Yes, yes, just like that, though all shall be inferior to me, at least you have already acknowledged it. Which makes you a bit better than them, though no less inferior. Anyway, be ready for a grand tale- “

“Make it ten words or less pretty please!”

“Wha-ten words?! Have you gone crazy? I can’t tell my formidable story in only ten words. You’d need a whole novel at least with 100k words or less to describe my amazing odyssey. If not a flashback.”

“Fine, ten words for the prologue, ten for the motive, ten for the plan and ten for the conclusion, pretty please!”

“I won’t do that.”

“Why not?”

“Because you’re not the boss of me, you may have been a pretend boss some time ago but here? I AM the boss around here! Sadly, I lack royal viziers and all but that’s being compensated thanks to the voices that guide me. And if you want answers then you better sit on your inferior butt and listen to me tell the most amazing tale in the whole wide world without telling me what to do! And no! Saying pretty please in that tone doesn't count as polite!”

“Do you not understand that I’m not in the mood for jokes? what part of Wriggle is dead, I am going to die, and everything is turning to nincompoop do you not understand? Have you been playing around while all this happened? Do you not care at all? Because I- “

“SHUT UP! Don’t you dare say that! Of course, I care, you idiot! WHEN did I ever say that huh? God, you’re pushy. Here I take you in, treat you well and even listen to what you’re saying, and you dare doubt my goodwill? Dare accuse me of friend-murder! Do you think so low of me! Me”

“Nice try, but that sounds more like gaslighting. What I want first and foremost is if you even care at all about what’s happening here, people…though I don’t care for the majority are being hurt and you’re not denying your involvement in this. So, what am I supposed to believe here huh?”

“…Look, I get it. You’ve been through stuff, you’re tired and moody but that’s no excuse to talk to me that way, okay? I am the king; this is my house. So, I demand you show me the respect I show you by sitting down, clogging that mouth of yours and listening to MY perspective on all this. Even if it may be a bit long-winded or dramatic, show a little patience as is your knightly duty and listen to the most amazing tale of them all.”

“Psh, knight you say. Is that why you talk weird sometimes? Are you trying to be old knighted? Is that the theme you’re going with? Cause that’s so old-fashioned.”

“I can talk however I want you sad, lost, inferior to me puppy. So let me enlighten you already.”

[X] No, if you don’t hurry up! then…the hakurei will come before you can shoot your laser thingy? Yeah!
[X] Fine, have your dumb flashback! But it better explain everything!
[X] Nah to that, I don’t think I can trust you or anything you’re going to say.

9 days sure fly fast when you're busy. Either way here's another update anon.
If you can guess what Cirno's been doing, then you get a free cookie delivered to your home!
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[X] Fine, have your dumb flashback! But it better explain everything!

That ought to distract Cirno long enough for Reimu to get here and beat the snot out of her.
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Update will come tommorow.

And if it doesn't, then you may call me a liar, liar, pants on fire.

Goodo nighto.
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Never mind, I'm a liar.

Please wait warmly as I get the time to write this all down and not miss a single detail.
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Everything leads to spaghetti
[X] Fine, have your dumb flashback! But it better explains everything!

Cirno nods, proud of you submitting to her grand wisdom and authority. “Okay, so. Long story short! Remember that talk we had way back about one must defeat things that are stronger than them to truly become the strongest? That birds eat insects because they’re stronger than them?”

You do, (It’s way back at the first thread) it was the last time you saw Cirno in a while after all, if not the main clue you had in searching for her only to suddenly meet her here. “What about it?”

“Well, that’s the motive right there! For that goal I have traveled through the Forest of Magic, challenged the witch the laser thingies only to lose (Marisa did meet Cirno, you forgot to ask her about it) so that annoyed me a bit. Not a lot because I knew that one day I would win, so instead of whining about the result I went home to retrieve some stuff (She left hints back at her home in the Igloo at the Misty lake but some music fortress distracted you) then I came to the amazing decision to go all the way to the Hakurei Shrine to defeat that mean Miko (Reimu has also met her and again you did not ask her about Cirno) but she didn’t want to bother getting up for a fight so sadly I left her be…and now comes the good stuff!” Cirno claps her hand as if she is about to reveal something massive.

“I came to a revelation, why bother fighting stupid witches and maidens if I can just fight something that’s even stronger than that? I needed to fight something above all other life-forms, I had to defy the gods! And the most ones were on youkai mountain so there I went!” she adds in some more useless details like how the harvest goddesses and that one goddess that spins a lot weren’t much off a challenge, how she slowly became more annoyed at the adventure so far and gained the genius idea of just immediately attacking the next goddess she saw which she was already doing except now she also started screaming ‘sneak attack’ every time.

“Anyway, as it started to get close to the evening and I was THIS CLOSE to the Moriya Shrine, I found that one stupid frog-lady with her stupid eye-hat relaxing at a pond nearby. All unguarded like the stupid frog she is, so naturally I did the one thing that had to be done: I was going to cryo-freeze her into ice-cubes with a single shot!” but somehow, she managed to dodge that, a fight happened, there was some taunting and Cirno got swallowed by a giant frog at the end of it. An embarrassing death…. “Except not! Cause then the Spaghetti God gave me the power to keep fighting, beat up that stupid frog, then her stupid goddess friend and that stupid green shrine-maiden all for the low, low cost of some few favours that I’m paying back right now, and that’s why I’m taking over the world!”

“W-what?” Her tale was surprisingly short but no less confusing. “What do you mean by Spaghetti God? You’re glossing over the most important bits.” So, you ask for more clarification

“Spaghetti God!” Cirno doesn’t mind repeating the name before she continues. “That’s the nice thing I saw while I was on death’s door, it was really ugly and had arms like noodles so I really thought I was done for a moment but since I’m the protagonist…of course some grand move from destiny would come to aid me in my time of trial!” There is zero doubt in the things she’s saying and no shame either, she really thinks herself a hero.

And is not done talking “She sure is a nice lady, well, I’m not sure if it was a lady or not. The only thing clear about her was a voice in my head that gave me a nice fuzzy feeling before everything in my body went bwam! And kaslam! Y'know? Then I kicked all off the goddesses dumb buts all on my own! I was going to be satisfied with just that, but then the voice gave me another idea. I forget the details but it was something about how if I were to let just fly away then surely these gods would try to get revenge on me so I had to make sure that would never happen or even easier…make sure that they could not do that ever!”

“…So, what did you do to them?” if it’s her then she probably left them be afterwards.

Dead wrong “Nothing much, I just went ahead and froze them all solid then wrote down a bunch of weird drawings on the walls of the shrine and blamo! All of it got sent into this odd little world and it became my fun little castle! For around a few days before I got bored of its style and wanted to make my own, so we dumped it back where it originally was.” She still doesn’t make much sense but as far as you can tell that much aligns with the fact the Moriya Shrine disappeared for a few days.

“But what of the divine trio? you stole their home okay? but what of them?”

“Trophies.”

“What?”

“They’re my trophies, right over there even.” Cirno gets up from her seat and guides you just a few steps back before she points at the hall with the humanoid ice-statues, which at a closer glance are far too precise to be artificial. There are seven of them, but none of them look like the trio. No green hair, no dumb hats or stone pillar to be seen anywhere, the only noticeable things about the individuals being their winged backs, wolf ears or blue hair, one even has a camera but that’s all. Their arms are raised defensively or mid-swing or just moments before pulling out a spell-card only to never finish that motion as they are stuck in a prison of ice with their motion and facial expression stuck for all eternity. “To be humiliated by having their expressions forever frozen with a face of dumb surprise. Isn’t that amazing? A fitting fate to those who defy me! Well, they didn’t even get to defy me because of the super laser, but still it’s nice to see them humbled.” finding humor in that, Cirno does a boastful pat to her chest, as if she admitted doing something cool, seeing absolutely nothing wrong in all this.

‘So, you’ve become an asshole that kidnaps people just so you can boast about how cool you are?’ is the first sentence that comes to your mind, but your mouth doesn’t open, nor does your body move as a rancid feeling surge within your stomach, your legs get jittery and you let out a stupid “Oh, wow… Well, huh. Color me surprised. I can't help but feel that this is super….” Petty? Repugnant? Something that’s way above causing some trouble that’s within good fun? “Silly.”

“How is this silly?” Cirno asks defensively, like that’s the wrong answer. Did she expect you to be awestruck and talk about how amazingly evil that is? Or did she want you to be horrified instead?

Either way you answer with an awkward laugh, not sure what to make of this. “I’m just saying that making statues out of people just seems like a lot of effort, if not an ancient cliché too.” you’re disappointed in a way, you expected something much grander than a ‘oh it was me all along!’ kind of reveal that’s accompanied by acts of evil so cartoonish that you can’t really be scared by them but are no less disgusted by the implications of them. To your own surprise even, but yeah, it is that not that bad...in a weird way? the rancid feeling dissapears slowly.

“Oh, you don’t get it then. I’m keeping them here so I can gloat! I also wanted them to admit how great I am now, but well…” Cirno scratches her chin, looking a bit embarassed.

“Ice statues can’t talk, can they?” you guess the reason, hoping that’s all to it.

“Well, not since I fixed that no.”

Silence, the rancid feeling comes back and goes even higher than before. “…What do you mean by that?”

“Oh well, the first few opponents I froze, I made sure that they could speak. I thought they would praise me…

But instead they said things like ‘Please let me go,’ ‘You won’t get away with this, let us go or else!’ and ‘So cold…so cold’ and they kept complaining and complaining and not shutting up! It was so annoying…”

“So… um… you made it, so they weren’t conscious anymore?”

“Why bother with that? I just changed it so that anyone new I froze solid could not talk at all.”

“What… about the old ones?”

“I had those buried pretty deep down the center here” She taps the ground with her foot, implying they’re further down. “Until I couldn’t hear them scream anymore. Pretty smart right?”

“So, just so that I’m clear. EVERY SINGLE PERSON IN HERE IS EXPERIENCING A LIVING NIGHTMARE!? Am I understanding that right?” if you could vomit right now, you would. But no, you only feel nasouis and can't even gag.

“What? No, not at all! You’re a silly girl, Rumia.”

“Oh…good! Tell me what I got wrong then, that it shines everything in a better light!” that's sarcasm.

“The frozen aren’t capable of sleep since I need them awake to harvest their energy efficiently. So, you can’t have it be a nightmare, it’s more like recycling the losers that failed to beat me.”



“Hey, what’s with the silence? And the sad face? Quit that already bud, I’ve already said you’re being a downer and I’m being as nice as I can be so what kind of problem are you having now?”

Do you not see what’s wrong in all this?

“Not if you’re being that vague no, go on enlighten me.”

“You’ve frozen fully sentient people into a prison, are currently helping ‘something’ that has ill intent towards Gensokyo and are doing all of it just for the sake of getting power? How is that right?”

“Really? Is that what’s been bothering you?” Cirno’s voice becomes a bit more bored, as if your worries are the dumbest things she’s heard off. “Don’t you already know that if you’re strong enough to get what you want, then those who lose against you have no right to complain about things?” she’s right, you’ve said that kind of line yourself multiple times but… “That’s the kind of logic everybody uses, don’t deny it. Sure, it’s said in a way that makes beauty and grace more important when everyone shoots pretty colors but in a way that’s a matter of strength too.

And guess who just so happens to be near the bottom? Fairies, they are and have always been the fodder of our home, treated as nothing more than cute trivial things at best or nuisances at worst and the simple fact that I’m one of them makes it so people never take me seriously either! But look, who’s laughing now? Not them for sure, and sure, that may be seen as bad or a ‘crime against nature’ but you know what I think about that? Fuck your nature! What did it ever give to me anyway? Immortality is nice and all but being so limited in the things I can do is something I won’t accept any more for the Spaghetti God has made me see the awful truth: That the only way to surpass the limits of the body is to surpass one’s very race! I’m going to become something greater than what nature has had in store for me. I shall shed behind my meager flesh and use the secrets of anonymity to become, nay SURPASS all the gods myself! I will become a True Overlord!!”

She can’t be for real. “You’re being a walking cliché right now, there’s no way you’re going to succeed at doing that or even get close to doing so before an incident resolver will come to kick your butt. The good guys always beat the bad guys. Not only that, but do you think you’ll get away scot-free with trying to do such a thing? You’re going to be sealed underground or worse!” but if she is, then you have to make her realize those kinds of actions are going to backfire immensely on her, there’s no way she’ll have a normal life again if she doesn’t stop.

“Then that’s the price for failure and if I win, then all the risk would have been worth it! Either way I would have been right about how it’s the strongest that decides how the pants are worn and I’d rather do something that I want to do then walk around like a lost puppy waiting for other people to tell me what to do and gain satisfaction from that like those losers here.”

“Cirno, I-I get where you’re coming from, but this kind of reaction is just blowing things out of proportion…I mean why even care about what people think of you? I already think you’re awesome, isn’t that enough? I’m not a guru but trying to live for only such a concept does not make sense, it’s outright impossible. The world is big so no matter what you do there will always be a stronger person out there right? Can’t you just quit this and come home? I’m sure if you do that now and free every person you’ve got in here then you won’t be punished too badly. Pretend it’s a redemption arc and everything. Or uh, say you were brainwashed? We could figure something- “ you brainstorm a solution to this, certain that talking so far has worked out so maybe you could find some words that could make her change her mind.

“Rumia, it’s sweet that you’re trying so hard to convince me to stop. But can’t you tell the simple fact that since I’m already this far, there’s no way I’d quit? I know you won’t oppose me so the only thing you can do is either support me in my quest or be quiet and just watch me win.” but that silly hope is immediately refuted by her, she does not and will not stop this.

“But…” and whatever you’ve got to say about is of no importance, she can’t be swayed.

“Nope, nothing you say will make me realize out of nowhere that what I’m doing is misguided or somehow snap some brainwashing thingy that isn’t there nor will it make me change sides because suddenly out of nowhere a greater threat has appeared. You can thank my little crown of concentration for that since it makes me immune to all kinds of fear, distractions, and stuff.

But enough of that, I remember you mentioned something about how you’re dying, and that Wriggle is dead right? Now that’s shady, cause I’m 100% not responsible for that and would love to help you get rid of those troubles. But first you need to get that silly ‘this is bad’ idea out of your head, okay?”

“Did you just say no fear? Oh, so you’re just cheating then” At those words you realize why that is. “Fear is one of the most natural responses out there, it’s the thing from which us youkais are born from, and everybody has. ‘Fight or flight’ and all, but thanks to your dumb toy it’s ‘fight or oh let’s fight some more’ for you, isn’t it?” or maybe you’re pulling at straws now.

“Yeah? I don’t see how that matters, but yes.” She knocks on her little crown. “It’s the crown of concentration, a nifty anon object that lets me ‘stay focused’ and removes anything from my head that would get in the way of that. It’s been helpful so far but that’s not the only toy I’ve been gifted.” Now she’s showing off the dumb rod she’s been holding this whole time. “And this baby is my king’s rod, it forces all those who’ve been touched by anonymous/ is working for anonymous/ or is related to anonymous in any way to obey my every command if I point it at them in around a 20-meter range. So, it works on all the servants you’ve seen before or even you yourself if I wanted to and that’s only one of its many uses. …Oh! But don’t worry, I won’t use it on you. Unless you try to hurt me, then I’d stop you, very easily even. Cause it hurts a lot, at least I think so. Otherwise, why would people flinch when I use it? But again, that’s not important. What is important is that you should be deciding by now, are you going to join me or stay out of my way? Never mind, I don’t want you on my team. Just don’t bother me and I’ll help you out once I’m done kicking the ass of the Hakurei, afterwards we can get you a nice little cure, revive wriggle and avenge her death and then send you gals home, like it’s a happy ending for a neat side quest!”

Her words ring on deaf ears, though some parts of those words may be tempting. Everything you’ve seen and heard from her makes her out to be a super unreliable person to trust right now. She’s got anon objects yet looks no worse for the wear, is serving the culprit willingly and is outright immune to the fear of being wrong. At least you think that since that could be why she’s fuller of herself than usual. She’s immune to fear and so also the fear that she might be wrong. She’s immune to the fear of becoming a tyrant! Or everything she just said was a lie that you’re oh so desperate to believe because it’d oh so be convenient for her as a way out once she inevitable loses to the Hakurei only to spared at the last minute because she was ‘brainwashed’ all along…it’s almost funny how paranoid you are.

But are you? You don’t feel like you’ve learned anything new other than some ‘hur, hur, me bad fairy. Remember past events? That was me ayooooooo’ nonsense. Nor do you have any source…wait do you have one, she’s got both the murder weapon and her victims. Never mind, you’ve learned that Cirno has gone cuckoo bananas and that she can’t be trusted.

So, despite your own desires, you cannot convince her or let her convince you. “Cirno, I’m going to be honest here. I thought you were joking around at first. Or at least I thought you were a joke villain, someone who’s clueless about everything and tries to act cool while being secretly manipulated by some grander mastermind. But now, whether you are being used or not, whether you are hearing voices or not, you are a genuine threat. You are a legitimate villain, and I did not think that it was possible for me to be both proud and disappointed at that. I made a mistake, I’ll be the first one to admit that….and like any good friend, I need to apologize. So, I’m going to give you a gift to make it up to you! Something I should have done the moment you admitted you have a part in this!`` Despite everything inside of you not wanting this, you have now no choice but to accept that Cirno is a threat and will have to be dealt with, in any way possible for the good of everyone, herself included. She's commiting a major mistake while thinking herself cool for it.

“Ooh, what kind of gift will it be? If it’s a fight, I won’t hesitate to beat you up just so you know. These hands are for friends and family alike, so please don’t let it be that way. I’m not joking, the very surroundings we are in obey my every command because of a nice little secret~”

But it doesn’t have to be you that does it per se “No, not a fight. It’s a good gift, one that should arrive soon. But why don’t you continue talking until then? Clear me in about some more stuff, like what are anon objects and what is the spaghetti god and what is their relation to anonymous and all that kind of things that I’ve waited hours for to know about, please?"

Instead you’ll use the time before the Hakurei arrives to milk the information cow out of any further information milk they have that can be milked out of the…

You know what you were trying to say and leave it at that lest a bizarre image may come.

“…” Cirno stays quiet for a moment, staring into your eyes. Did she see through you? “You just want information, don’t you?” then she lets out another smile and puts an arm around your shoulder before pulling you closer so she can ruffle your hair with one hand. “Well, that’s fine, we’re buds after all, and since you’ll be joining me anyway it’s only normal to keep you in the know yeah and even if you don’t join it’s not like you could do anything to hinder me, so listen up one final time as I explain the everything that I can think off that I can explain and things!” she lets go at that declaration and flies a bit up so she can force you to look up.

Here comes another monologue, you lean a bit back in your chair and pep up your ears to listen, just ignore the mixed feelings you’re having right now alongside your massive dissatisfaction as usual.

“Cool, then prepare for the flashback.” After saying that Cirno just stares at you, unblinking and unmoving and… what is she doing? Is she really trying to have a flashback? If so, you don’t see it.

"I don't see anything." You say out loud just for good measure.

“Oh, my bad, let me share it.” Cirno waves her rod again and the surroundings distort again…
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explanation scene 1
Into a blank void with just you and her, she’s wielding a flash-light and a fake mustache with a monocle for some reason, the former highlighting a chainsaw that’s isolated from your area.

Before you can get your bearings straight or even bother to ask anything she starts yet another monoblob. You shut up, turn off your brain and get ready to listen to her nonsense.

“You listening?

Good, so where do I begin then…uh, anonymous. Let’s start with that shall we?

Anonymous this, anon object that. Bla, bla! Everyone’s heard those words many times now!

It means something that has no name, no identity or is just unremarkable! IF you did not know that much then you’re really a hopeless case, but don’t worry.

I'm smart enough for two!

Anyway they are called that way because nobody knows where they came from (Except for me!), how they’re made or what it even wants (Except for me! and some others!). Hence the anonymous. It’s an easier term to call them by, but also a really lame name! Like why don’t you call them something cool like the shifters, the mimics, or the many and all those cool names? I’m sure there’s plenty of more fitting names that aren’t so average sounding!

You’re still following right? Good, because honestly explaining the next part won’t be easy since I don’t know what you know. So, we’ll start off with the basics and then dive deeper into this pool of knowledge, you better appreciate the explanation buddy, cause I won’t repeat it.

The anon object is super easy to understand, it’s an object or ‘something’ that looks like an object that’s clearly made to tempt some stupid person into picking it up so it can mess them up. Not that you’re stupid, okay maybe you are not as smart as me. But honestly this doesn’t need much explaining so let’s skip ahead to what’s important. Like what happens if you’re dumb enough or just that curious to pick one up despite it being super obvious that something bad might happen: Something bad happens! Who could have known?

What do you mean sarcasm is overdone these days? Fine, I’ll be straight then: Turns out, these things are filled to the brim with the sauce of the Spaghetti God and explicitly using it counts as consent for it to tamper with your body and try to manipulate your mind.

No, don’t bother asking me how that works. Maybe there are tiny little letters written somewhere but as far as I can tell, it’s passed off as a fair trade even though it’s really not.

Funny thing is, it’s effective because the thing about ‘intense willpower lets you resist anything mental’ is just a bold faced lie, so unless you already know how to deal with this, then the best you can do is delay the inevitable until you end up becoming a crazed puppet out to cause problems. It’s a simple but effective strategy because once it’s stuck on you, nothing short of jumping into a fire or making it think that you’re about to take it with you will make it remove itself from you and even then, when enough time has passed that will stop working as well. So, in sho- “

“I already know the gist of that, tell me something I don’t know like WHY it was made.”

“DON'T YOU EVER TALK T- Oh, it’s all for some scam.” You don’t know what happened there, one moment she was about to scream in your face and the next she talked calmly again. “But we’ll talk about that more later. Have you heard about the stages of infection though? You might want to learn about that before it’s too late.”

“Go ahead.” you ignore the outburst and concentrate on the info dump.

“Okay then!”

Wait, that was sarcasm, it better not be an actual info dump.
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explanation scene 2
“This here is stage 1: The anon object has found a host but has yet to find a way to gain further control. At the same time the body feels the intrusion and tries to repel it no matter what. This makes it so that the affected body part looks like a massive bee stung. so far, so good.” never mind, it is an info dump. You hope that she at least tells you something new.

“How did you get an image of me?” but that image of you is very distracting, you don’t know how she got or why it’s even so accurate-looking to that giant chainsaw arm problem you were having not a long time ago. She couldn’t have possibly known about all this, right?

Cirno ignores your question “This is the longest stage and goes faster or slower depending on how strong the host is. So, for weaklings it may only take seconds to consume them or maybe a few hours, but for the really strong it may outright take days before it can progress towards stage 2 of the whole deal. Of course, there are other factors that can speed things up, like repeatedly using it or thinking it’s a cool thing instead of doing your best to ignore it and wanting nothing to do with it instead.”

“So, I can’t even ask questions?” so you ignore her blob and call attention back to the question.

“You can, but that doesn’t mean I have to answer them!” she snaps back, all cheeky wise.

“How did you get an image of me? I’ll just ask you again!” but that doesn’t change anything.

This makes her groan in annoyance. “It’s not actually you, I just made the surroundings shift so that something appears that looks like you, so chill out.” She adds in an eye roll too.

“Fine, continue then. What’s stage 2? How many stages are there anyway?”

“Three! But let’s get to stage 2 now.”
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explanation scene 3
“Stage 2 is the moment that the object has finally figured out what makes the host tick and how to control them more efficiently. The body’s defense system no longer recognizes it as a threat and all signs of pain and discomfort disappear as a result, if anything it feels good to use it. In this image you can see that the host is still in control, but they are this close to outright losing it if they lower their guard even the tiniest bit. For now, the object can decide how you feel and lower your inhibitions towards more extreme and or insane acts. So, in a word, it’s hard to not end up going crazy.”

“…It can control how you feel? And what seems reasonable or not? What in the…”

“Yeah, it’s nasty. A completely calm person could turn into an insane giggling buffoon, or a happy person could turn into a useless depressed one that can’t do anything right. Isn’t that sick?”

“If by sick you mean unnaturally creepy and very messed up then yeah.”

“Ready for the final stage? Heads up this is going to be the worst one.”

“Throw it at me, I’d sooner die than not know the truth.”

“Really? Don’t you want to know anything else first?”

“What do you mean?”

“I’m just saying you might want to ask less important questions first so I can end it all with a massive reveal. Otherwise, this will just become boring for you and me, so again do you have questions?”

You think some more. “How is Alice related to this?” Cirno motions for you to elaborate. “Uh, some sort of monster that looked like her tried to kill me, remember. I want to know why that happened.”

“You talk as if I know everything. But if I had to guess then she couldn’t resist the allure of picking up some fake magical book or odd-looking puppet and got her butt caught that way. Oh, I forgot. Most items take a shape that appeals the most towards their intended victim if they know who they are, BUT I don’t know why, but I feel like that might not be the reason here. You should ask her yourself.”

“….” About that, that’s not going to be possible. You take out the doll to respond to that.

Cirno doesn’t show any big reaction to it “Let me guess, she’s dead too then? Oops, my bad. That’s a nice doll though. ” which means she probably doesn’t know everything or she simply does not care about her at all, you really hope it’s not the latter. You really, really, hope that.

“One more question, what of the knights in the woods and the rangers back at the shrine? Also do you know if Shion is working with you gals too? I’ve been wondering about this for a while now.” That's a lie, you barely remember it but figure getting an answer for that is nice.

“The knights are mine; they were meant to go look for my pals (like you!) and recruit them. But one of them was met with violence so they changed the objective to exterminating all blondies. Soon after all contact was lost with them so I assume those on the field are dead, so now I won’t bother wasting them since why send 10 when you can eventually send a thousand?” That’s one question answered. “As for rangers? Don’t you mean dancers? Oh, those were just distractions. The red-white is a lazy person, right? So just have someone spoil her and she won’t be doing anything until it’s too late. Pretty smart plan, right? Well, that’s the wonder of evil schemes that I tell you!” that’s another question answered. “Finally, who? Shion? I don’t know who that is, but you can try your luck at the other two hidden bases. Like the one deep in the lake or the one under that radio tower. We’re in the one hidden at the top of youkai mountain if you must ask. Keep in mind that anyone in the other places may not be as hospitable as I’m being right now, they might even try to kill you, okay?”


“Okay…wait why are you telling me this again?”

“Because I trust you d’uh.”

“Huh?”

“I can count on you to not snitch on me or abuse that information in any way. You’re just going to use it to take care of yourself and Wriggle, right? Then I don’t see a reason to not help you.”

“Even if I won’t be joining your thing?”

“You say that now, but I’m sure that you’d help me too if I needed you. Besides, I’m sure that once you see me take over the world that you’ll be convinced by my awesomeness as well.
And even if you don’t for a while, you will always be welcome by my side, always you hear?”

“Cirno…” no, don’t you dare be swayed by that. She’s the enemy right now, but she’s also a friend, but she’s also your enemy, a frenemy? “I…even if you’re dead wrong and creepy I’m grateful.”


“You better be, any more questions? You may as well ask them, this talk can’t possibly get any longer than it already is.”

“A final one then, why are you calling it a spaghetti god?”

“Because I don’t know her real name and she looked like ink noodles.”

“Ink noodles?”

“It’s like spaghetti, except covered in squid ink. I had one at the last vampire party and it got stuck in my head.”

“Okay. I’m done asking questions then, anymore and I’d rather drop dead.”

“Careful with your wishes, but sure. Let’s start the final stage!”
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explanation scene 4
Okay, you were warned about this. But that doesn’t mean you were ready for this.

“WHAT IS THAT?!” you speak in horror as you see the most revolting sight in your life.

“It’s the final stage, spooky huh? At this point, whoever was the host may as well be gone, for the object now has full control over both the person’s mutated body and their powers. They’ve got no need to eat, or to breathe, they have no heartbeat or flesh or even organs. All that remains is the desire to cause as much havoc as possible and infect as many people as they can all for the glory of the Spaghetti God. Of course, that last part is a secret they will never say aloud. Now, you might be asking ‘could anyone recover from this?’ and the answer is no, you’re just dead, forever.

Sike, of course there’s a cure. Hell, if someone beats up this phase then they can recover the mind/soul/ whatever it is that makes a person out of their body from a small, cute doll that looks just like the previous host. Afterwards you just need a way to revive the dead and voila, problem solved. At the cost of the natural order and potential trauma of the victim though.”

“So the only cure is to let this ‘infection’ grow all the way to the final stage and then kill the infected, pick-up whatever doll is found and revive that person? Is there no other way?” you really hope there’s a yes to that question because you’ve already had some of the symptoms described and also because such a way of doing this is…it isn't effective in the long run?

“Not that I’m aware off, besides who would consent to letting some illness take them over only to let their doctor murder them too? Tell anybody about this method and they’ll call you crazy. Which I think is the point, if the only cure also screws you over then the host will feel truly hopeless, and it’ll become even easier to take them over regardless of if they’re told about there being a cure or not.”

“So, the infections are real and there is nothing I can do about it that would truly matter…”

“Yeah, if you’ve got an object. Then you’re absolutely, utterly, and supremely out of lu-ooooh, I almost forgot for a second that you’ve picked one up, haven’t you? I’m so sorry to hear that but don’t let it get too much to you, because I’ve got something that can help with that. But until then don’t try to die before the final stage or you die for real. I’ll tell you more about that later”

“…. You’re not giving me false hope, right?”

“As if, and I’m still NOT DONE. I’ve got some confidential stuff that may cheer you up a LOT!”

“…?”

“Tell me, do you remember that whole thing werewolves and vampires have? How if you kill the person or source of who infected you, the curse slash infection will be broken and everyone is ok?

it works under that rule too (maybe) I'm sure of it! hence the Spaghetti God is hiding until it’s the ‘right time’ to do the thing they’ve speaking about doing to prevent that! Leaving all the tough work to me and some of her guardians.”

“…Where is she hiding then? Who is she and why is she doing this anyway?”

“Ah, so now you’re done being apathetic. Good, for a second, I expected you to drop to your knees and scream about how you’re in despair and how your entire journey and all of your struggles ended up meaningless.”

It’s been a long day, “ANSWER the questions, pretty please?”

“So, you can try and immediately tell the nearest incident resolver about this? No thanks, oh but I can answer the why though. Or to be more specific, I can make a guess on why this is happening.”

“Go on.”

“I think it’s a scam.”

“A scam?”

“Yeah, like a fake incident and stuff. You make something that does harmful stuff on its own. Hide in your little sinkhole until the situation gets bad and then jump out to save the day with the remedy towards the problem that you’ve secretly created in the first place. It’s a grab for attention from a god that’s got no name but has yet to vanish. Hence easily solving a problem you made yourself will not only make you look like a hero but gives you an easy spot among the big gals, if you get me.

Or possibly but definitely more boringly: She’s just some cliché oooh so spooky evil creature that wants to spread fear and ooh spooky blab la bla stuff, I doubt it though cause she has a nice voice and is far more polite and passive than you would expect an voice in one’s head to be like.”

“That’s…the most disgusting, dirty, sneaky, cowardly, and pettiest thing I’ve ever heard! Everything I’ve been through and everything else is enduring was for nothing more than engineered heroics!?”

“Some people don’t care about the little guys and will do anything to get what they want. But again, that’s just a theory. It’s disgusting for sure and will be one of the few things I’ll handle once I take over the world. That and statues of myself, I’ll make my enemies build large statues of myself in every landscape tha-”

“Hold on if you know this is disgusting. Then why are you still working for her?!”

How did you get here by the way, Rumia? See, that’s a question I haven’t asked you out of consideration.”

“What are you talking about?”

“I’m saying that if you’re questioning my motives, then you should first look at who you’re trusting yourself with. It’s not that hard to guess how you got here but anyway, I’ll answer the why still but only because it’s you: It’s called taking advantage of a situation, see every incident has some stage bosses, right?

I’m sure bosses (fanon master/guardian/ carrion/whatever you call them) one and two and three are already dead since I haven’t heard from them but as a total there are around four of us. Alongside two people unrelated to the incident (aka red herrings) to make a total of six stages. The seventh one being the extra stage. Which is like the place where the culprit is hiding, I think. Again, they’re a coward.

But enough of them and more of me: my role is to be the boss of stage four. The part where things get together and if you’re playing on easy mode or don’t meet some requirements it’ll also be part where the story flat out ends on an anti-climax. Did you find all four eggs by the way? No? I’ll give a hint then:

There’s one hidden here, one in gensokyo and two others are hidden elsewhere. Find them all and boom the extra stage is open! Don’t question why, now back to me: So as a boss, I get to have certain bonuses and in this case the bonuses happen to just be big enough for me to decide why bother listening? Why not become the final boss myself?

The Spaghetti god is just a hiding coward and even if she’s listening to this there’s next to nothing, she can stop me from talking without coming here physically since I can just ignore her nagging voice. In shorter words, the idiot made her servants too independent and told them to do whatever and we all know that too many cooks ruin the pot so now I’m taking over the role that she should have. I’m going to try and take over Gensokyo and regardless of me winning or losing, nobody will ever know the truth about her. Because this is my story now! And win or lose, I’ll have had my fun! Nothing could go wrong!”

As if summoned by that last sentence alone “Oh wow, even this boss is full of herself. Can’t believe it’s that ice-fairy though.” A deadpan voice speaks up right behind Cirno, making her jump up “Who dares intrude on my monologue!” she turns around indignantly as the surroundings go back to the crystal blue palace so she can glare at-
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turns out monoblobbing does backfire
“I think you know who.” The Hakurei who’s calmly standing in front of her and looks no worse for wear, only a single eyebrow of her raised to give you a ‘what are you doing here?’ kind of look as a quick glance before she takes out her rod and taps it with one hand. “And I think you know what’s about to happen, seeing how you confessed something very suspicious just now~” a teasing tone is heard behind her last sentence as she’s confident that no matter what exactly this is, she’ll just do the usual thing and kick everybody’s asses. Hopefully, yours is not included.

Oh, and she’s not alone, “Hey kid, long time no see!” Meiling waves at you with one hand, holding an knocked out Letty with her other. Compared to the Hakurei most of her clothes are a bit torn and she’s got scratches and traces of snow a little bit everywhere, as if she was a pack mule. “I’d love to ask why you’re here or why you ditched me with Reimu here but right now I’m going to have to ask you to move to the side so we can kick little miss ego’s butt right here and now.”

“What the, how did you gals even sneak up on me?!” Cirno’s completely baffled by their arrival, unaware of the fact that talking is not a free action. “I’ve got security and everything! There’s no way you losers just flew towards us like it’s a nice summer park picnic walk so how did you get here?!” then realization strikes on her face, “You better not have heard anything too! Because if you didn’t then good, because I said nothing important just now!” and she lies as skilfull as a fish can walk on land.

“There’s a big hole in the wall and a canon pointing outside, so we entered that way.” Meiling points at the big laser thingy you were on before with Cirno, “There were some weirdos outside but once I told them that we are but humble warriors seeking an audience with their master, they let us in.”

“Terrible security aside, we only heard the last line you said and that’s enough info for me.” Reimu points her ofuda at Cirno’s direction. “Enough info for the two of you to be in very big trouble, now you two can either surrender and tell me everything I want to know or have me beat you up and then tell me everything I want to know. I recommend the former if you girls don’t want to be hurting. But don’t think for a second that I will hold back if anyone tries something sneaky here.” you’d say you’re glad to see her, but why did she threaten you too?

“Bah, don’t get cocky!” Cirno crosses her arms and puffs her chest. “Don’t think for a second that just because you managed to sneak up on us that we’re going to listen to whatever you say! I’m still a thousand times stronger than anyone in this room and I have Rumia here as well. And the two of us can take two-thousands of you suckers!” and she assumes yet again that you’re on her side.

“Uhuh, how terrifying.” Meiling lets go of Letty’s foot and dusts herself off “This is my que to say something cool or snarky. But I honestly don’t really get what’s happening here for a while now.” then she puts up her arms in a fist hold. “But I can tell when a fight is about to brew.”

“You don’t need to understand anything once I kick you-IS THAT LETTY?!” Cirno finally notices her, the sight of her fellow chilly person being in this condition making her flare up even more. “Did you do that? What kind of villains are you to hurt her?! How dare you harm my friend!” says the person that admitted to freezing people into statues. It’s not even funny.

“It was self-defense actually.” Meiling corrects her. “And she was a real tough cookie too, so sorry if I went a bit hard on her.” And scratches her neck in shame a bit, without an awkward smile.

How dare you defend yourself against her!?” but that doesn’t change Cirno’s mind at all.

“So, not that I’m loving this talk. Which I’m not. Are we fighting or are we talking?” Reimu lets out an annoyed groan, not one to enjoy small-talk or timewasters. “I want this incident done with today, thank you very much. So, here’s a rare deal: You point me at the final boss, and I won’t exterminate you two regardless of your choice like I would have done just a second ago, deal?”

It’s obvious Cirno’s going to say no, “Wait, we’re getting rid of Rumia too?” but Meiling sounds a bit surprised at Reimu’s words. “I don’t think that’s needed, she’s clearly not the culprit or a part of this.” And actively vouches for you, despite you not having seen her for like half a day.

“Then she and by that, I mean you-” Reimu points at you for emphasis. “-should get out of the way already and gloss your nails or something while the professionals do their work. Understood, grue?” oh, oh! You get it now, she’s just acting tough. The hakurei is in the middle of doing a job so of course she can’t possibly look weak in this situation, that’s it!

“Bah, as if she’d actually say no!” Cirno finds the possibility laughable. “It’s one thing to not help me, but actively aiding my enemies would make her a traitor! And there’s no way she’d backstab me!” somehow, that amount of faith in her to you is kind of nice but also…

[X] True, you’re not going to fight her, but you won’t fight with her either. Sit this out.
[X] Stupid cheesiness, call it that but there’s no way you’ll let your friend be exterminated!
[X] False, all doubts about fighting her are gone. Hit her from behind and let’s do this.
[X] Can’t we talk about this? This is Gensokyo, fighting is as normal as breathing here.

Tldr: Cirno took the absolute opposite route of you, while you stayed moral (to a sense) and did your best to ignore any voices and only did what you felt was right, only to suffer for it. She obeyed every order given to her until there was an opportunity to do what she wanted, then she followed that desire even if it hurt others and is having the time of her life. Not only that but in no part of her adventure was she confused on what to do or how to do it. I think that’s a neat detail to share. Even if it is all spoon-fed to you like this, I’m happy about it.

Also we should be done soon, like close to the end-game. Since there’s only 2 stages left.
Sorry for the wall of text and thanks for your continued participation, I'm 100% finishing this story.
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[x] Become a double agent. Announce that you will help Cirno by covering the room in darkness to blind everyone, but then only cover Cirno's head in darkness so she is the only one blinded.

Lets not give Cirno a reason to use her evil Anon control rod on us.
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[x] Become a double agent. Announce that you will help Cirno by covering the room in darkness to blind everyone, but then only cover Cirno's head in darkness so she is the only one blinded.
[o] I'd like to amend this with cover the room and fly off some twenty meters. We don't really have power to localize like that.

Also, did we kill the god damn secret boss on the way here by going through a toilet?
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>>31965
According to >>31701 Rumia has the power to localize her darkness to a single campfire, so Rumia should be able to localize her darkness to a single Cirno too.
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You’re not sure what a double agent is, but like a wind that goes through the cracks of some rocks, a small idea enters your mind just like that.

That idea is accompanied swiftly by yet another just as odd. You’re going to cover Cirno’s head in darkness by focusing the darkness on a single small target! Surely, that can be done after you managed to create ink before, of all things. But before you make such a clear-cut move that shows you’re opposed to her; you’re going to say the exact opposite. You’re going to tell a lie! By pretending to be on her side, she will be off-guard and hitting her will be easy!

This could not go wrong.

"Cirno, I’m on your side! No matter what, I’ll always be your friend too! " You declare so with confidence and faked emotion, hoping that they are fooled by it.

"Of course, you would be." Cirno’s smile becomes a little bit bolder, having expected this but no less pleased by your decision.

"You are joking, right?" I’d rather not fight you, Rumia. "Can't you see that Cirno is acting odd?" Meiling, however, sounds confused, if not disappointed in you. She is reluctant to fight you, but she will, if need be, probably soon too.

"Don’t bother with that, youkai love to be unreasonable." Such a hassle... " Reimu does not believe in you at all pretends to not care and lets out a shrug before fiddling with something in her pocket. "So, I guess we’re fighting then? Fine, then I’ll be the judge, jury, and executioner of you two lousy girls." In a half-bored fashion, she accepts the situation, gets ready to fight, and you better pray that she's just bluffing.

Fooling them all sure was easy, super easy, but who are you to complain? Now it is time for the next part, as in the part where you cover Cirno’s head in darkness! "Whatever, have my darkness!"

After announcing your move, you concentrate, you focus, and you really visualize the small orb of darkness at the exact spot where Cirno’s head would be. You don’t want to risk the chance of getting the orb in the wrong spot, which is more than possible since you’re mostly used to letting the darkness spread everywhere. Call it the difference between moving every blade of grass on a field with a lawnmower or trimming specific flower bits with a tiny scissor. One takes more effort and precision, while the other is something even a child could understand at first use. That’s how it feels.

To your surprise, you can feel something flickering within yourself. The darkness hears your request and happily grants it, for just above Cirno’s head, a tiny, barely the size of an insect, dark ball is created.

Good; it means your move is possible. So immediately, you launch yourself backwards and land with the back of your head on the ground thanks to the propulsion of a heavy object hitting your chest.

The lights go bright, air leaves your lungs, your legs give out, your vision shuts down and your jaw opens in pain. "Euuuuuugh..." a moan of exactly of pain incarnate leaves the Rumia estate for your interior feels like it’s having a fire-problem and no water in miles.

"Rumia, are you okay!?" Cirno’s the first to react and quickly flies her over to you so she can check if you’re all right. Sadly, you can only moan in pain back at her, but the worry is complimenting. "What a cheating move!" Accepting your answer as proof that you’re still alive, Cirno takes a moment to glare at Reimu and co. "Moving to disable straight off the bat is not cool. Don’t you know anything about formal combat? You’re breaking the rules! And breaking my friend! You’re a double breaker! "

"I don’t care much for rules." Reimu holds another red orb in her right hand, the same one as the one that’s currently on your chest and somehow pinning you with an immense weight despite its size. "Also, your darkness buddy was about to do something sneaky there. I don’t care much for that either."

"I don’t like it." Meiling looks at your prone form with some pity. "But I think that was the right thing to do. If she won’t listen and tries to sneak attack us, then it’s only fair for us to defend ourselves."

"Whatever! Shut up! I don’t want your loser excuses! " Cirno, on the other hand, is adamant about removing the thing from you while remaining vigilant against the others."Nhhhhhhh! "What the... why is this thing so heavy?!" but proves unable to, for there is only one person that can pick them up. "Darnit, I’m sorry pal. But it looks like you’re stuck under that for a bit. Just stay comfy! " She stops trying and faces her opponents again... while standing on top of the orb, adding her weight to your discomfort. "But don’t worry! If I can’t free you now, then I’ll force Reimu to do so once I make her my slave!" Frustrated, she grips her rod tightly and clenches her fists even harder. The time for battle has come. "Those who defy me are going to be frozen into ice-cubes, shattered into pieces, frozen into ice-cubes again and left to be melted before the morning sun! Come at me, you cheaters! "

"The only thing that’s going to be melted..." Her combat pose ready, Reimu floats in the air for what she assumes will be a damnaku fight. She already has a few spell cards up her sleeve. "I will be your silly delusions and your overly clichéd character!" and she shows one off. "Danmaku match, me and Meiling versus you." No contact, let’s go! ", to properly declare her terms for the assumed future curtain hell battle. Meiling does the exact same, even though only one person needs to do the set-up. She also adds in her own little quote and battle pose, but if you add in everything that everyone has ever said, then by the time you’re done, they’re already doing something else.

"No." Cirno refuses the danmaku challenge with a smile, still standing on top of you despite the noises you’re making. "I’m not playing your stupid, girly game! This is my home, my realm, my rules, and so we’ll play the game I want to play: My game! "again, no joke. You feel like you’re being crushed to death, like how a worm would feel if someone accidentally stepped on it.

"What?" Reimu narrows her eyebrows, suspicion rising within her. "Danmaku isn’t just a game, it’s the way to resolve incidents everywhere." You’re not going to be an exception, so accept it already. "

"This isn’t Gensokyo. Also, I don’t care what you think. Cope about it." Ignoring her remark, Cirno raises her rod, swings it down, and in an instant, the entire world goes through a blurry distortion.

At least you assume she is, seeing how you can’t see anything. But who has ever let that get in the way? Oh, wait. Now the battle ensues! Things aren’t as dramatic as they should be... Let’s try again.

A battle commences!


*Swiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiishhhhhhhhh*
*Swooooooooooooshhhhh*


https://youtu.be/3tPBEFMkJjA

You feel a familiar sensation, one that if you were sawy You would recognize as that one feeling you had while fighting the carrion, but honestly, that’s enough about you. You’re stuck under a rock, and while you’d love to monologue all day about that, your ears can still pick up the conversation that’s happening between your friend and foe. Well, they’re kind of all your friends, but you get it.

"Welcome to the battle-zone!" Cirno, still on top of you, raises both of her fists, for she is ready to kick some ass and explain absolutely nothing about the place to keep the advantage. The rules are on none-of-your-business-island, the way to play is in the instruction booklet you don’t have, and you girls are utterly, completely, and fully out of luck now. Because I’ve already won, take that! "

To nobody’s surprise, Reimu ignores her comment, instead taking a moment to observe how her background has turned into a garble of meaningless seizure fodder and how her own body has changed style to fit the environment in an ugly mirror-like way. "Ok, I’m kind of surprised." For once, she admits she has the closest thing to a positive reaction towards Cirno. "The background could be better, and the music feels a bit too cheery, but I’ll be honest, I’d like to try this game out. So how does one play again? " You’re not sure if that was sarcasm or if she simply does not understand or care about her current situation by asking such a thing. Either way, this means nothing special to her. And why shouldn't it be? She's the Hakurei. Incidents like these are things she resolves before dinnertime all on her own.

Meiling, on the other hand, "WOAH! Don’t tell me this is... Is there no way it couldn’t be? Are we playing an RPG for real? How did you do that? Who invented that? Can I take it home? " Her eyes sparkle with curiosity.She seems familiar with how this all works and outright looks forward to the fight, expecting it to be a fun experience to be a part of.

In short, neither girl is intimidated by Cirno’s display. "W-that’s not the correct response! You’re all supposed to be intimidated by this revelation if not disgusted by my pra-pra-pragmathic thing! "

"Wait, is this an RPG thing or a pragmatic thing?" Reimu doesn’t understand either term, so she asks Meiling for clarification. "It’s just like my rpg's." which Meiling does deliver as they both ignore Cirno again. "But what is an RPG?" Reimu asks yet another question, and you’d love to hear more about this.

Cirno interrupts them, "STOP HAVING FUN!" and stomps the ball once to vent her anger. "This is the part where you all shake in your boots at how every advantage was taken from you and beg me for mercy!" Not the one where you give me criticism and start chatting like none of this is special! " Okay, so she’s offended because nobody is giving her the attention she thinks she deserves. How mature.

"No, don’t bother answering. We’re fighting this instant, and I’m taking the first turn too! The moment she says those words, the exact same text appears on the top of what you perceive to be the top of the screen. A second after, several diamond-shaped ice cubes, each the size of a car, scatter in a rapid-fire fashion towards both Reimu and Meiling, forcing them to brace themselves as the onslaught continues for around 5 seconds before coming to a sudden end.


"That... didn’t do anything?" Reimu looks completely unharmed by it. All she did was strike a hurt pose during the onslaught, only to look no worse for the wear. "What was the point of that?"

"Hold on, that’s not true." But Meiling doesn’t let it slide, instead pointing at Reimu’s head. "Look above you! Your HP has lowered!" For some reason, she speaks as if this is a bad thing. Oh, wait, so that’s it.

"Hp?" Reimu looks above herself and sees two numbers in green. The most leftward says 300, while the one on the right says 500. It is at this point that your brain finally connects the dots.

HP is one’s health points. It’s a long story, but basically. If that number reaches 0, then you lose! " Meiling adds in, her voice filled with a confidence that she knows her stuff for some reason.

How did you guys know? I mean, that’s not true! Getting to 0 health is a good thing! " Cirno’s a bad liar and bad at hiding her surprise at Meiling’s knowledge. So naturally, she immediately acts on it by pointing her rod at Meiling and declaring that "Explaining the rules is from now on against the rules!"

"What?" is the only flat noise that comes out of Meiling’s mouth at the news.

"You heard me, from now on." Explaining the rules is illegal and if you do break that rule, then you are to be insta-killed! " Cirno explains her totally made-on-the-spot rule.

Even the Hakurei can tell that’s nonsense. "That’s just cheating." You’re just bending the rules to suit your own whim!" Most of her curiosity disappears as quickly as it arrived while she stares Cirno down with a look of disapproval and disgust. Like one would do to a child that is throwing a tantrum.

Seeing this, Cirno raises her chin just so she can look down on the two. Oh, what’s that? Can the little babies not play my game fair and square? If so, then feel free to give up this instant!"

"Okay, you asked for it." The Hakurei gets fed up with it and takes out a needle, throwing it straight towards Cirno! only for it to hit an invincible wall just two steps away from her. To her surprise, not. "Oh, so it's that kind of game..."

"It’s not your turn to attack yet." She says it with the smuggest tone she can muster. "It’s Meiling’s turn now, so why don’t you suck on your thumb and wait until then, okay?"

"Tsk..." The hakurei only clicks her tongue at that, mumbling to herself something you can’t overhear before turning to Meiling. "So, are you going to use this 'turn,' Miss Ice-Freak?"

"Yeah, in a moment. Just let me look at my moves first. So, I can strategize and all. " Meiling tells the Hakurei to be patient as she is perusing some list that you cannot see.

"Moves?" At which Reimu raises an eyebrow, having as said before, absolutely no experience in this.

"Yeah, the things that-oh, I can’t say sorry." And alas, Meiling can not explain it to her either.

Because Cirno is being a big mean cheater about all this. That’s the situation for them right now.

As for you, you’re still stuck under a big Ying-yang orb that’s crushing most of your back and knees while also accompanying said pain with the one you get from touching holy objects. The only free parts of your body are your hands, your head, and your feet. So, while most movement isn’t out of the question, the main problem is the fact that you’re being crushed and burned at the same time. (Well not really burned, but it still hurts a lot)

Naturally, That means that the slightest movement hurts a whole lot more than sitting still. But you can’t sit still, or you’ll be stuck under this thing forever to be crushed and burned, d’uh. Okay, you know what? You’re making this sound too complicated, so let’s say it again.

There’s a big Ying-yang orb on you, Cirno is cheating in a fight against Reimu and Meiling, and your left ear is itchy, but scratching it with your bare nails is a dirty thing to do in public and also the last possible thing to be doing right now.

Even so, what should a girl like you do?

[Write in because the writer is too tired to edit this any more rn]


TLDR: If you want to join the fight, get this thing off you somehow.
That said don't worry about this fight taking like 10 whole updates to finish, the result is already predetermined to 3 different results depending on some choices taken during this and the next update.
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I figured the sneaky option wouldn't work, but I didn't expect it like that.

[x] We're not part of the turn order, and therefore not in the game. We can explain the rules since we are exempt from them.

Also if Cirno makes us part of the turn order then we get some earlier abilities back to use. (blinding strats for the win)
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[x] Psst, Cirno. I don't know how to play. Can you explain the rules for me?

Outcome #1: Cirno is an idiot and is insta-killed when she explains the rules for us.

Outcome #2: Cirno is a cheater and makes herself immune to the instai-kill rule. But she still explained the rules so now Reimu and Meiling both know the rules.

Outcome #3: Cirno is a jerk and doesn't explain the rules to us. We now have an excuse to use friendly fire against Cirno by claiming that we didn't understand the rules and attacked Cirno "accidentally."
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>>31968

You could definitely try that, though at no point was it mentioned that you're going to be exempt to this rule so it could backfire on you or simply work really nicely. This option is rather straight-forward tho.


>>31969

Just as viable, all 3 outcomes are possible though the attacking part will be much more difficult seeing how Rumia is currently being crushed by a ying-yang orb. It really depends on Cirno's whimsy tho.

That said, this is considered a tie for now since either write-in will bring a way different result from one another. So I'll wait for now and will roll heads or tails tommorow if the tie is still there. Until then.
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Heads or Tails time.

1 for the first vote (head) and 2 for the second one. (tails)

Let's see which one it shall be.

Coin flip: tails!
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[x] Psst, Cirno. I don't know how to play. Can you explain the rules for me?

Ah, yes. Once again, an amazing deception enters your mind. As the beacon of darkness itself (which is you!) has once said: what is a lie but nothing more than an extension of the shadows themselves? That cool line in your head done, you return to the reality that you’re being CRUSHED LIKE A PANCAKE RIGHT NOW! WHO HAPPENS TO BE SIZZLING HOT TOO!

Which, naturally. Makes things like talking or trying to play it smooth a rather hard endeavour.
Or in other words, it’s hard trying to say or do anything while you’re in immense pain so maybe, just maybe, you should try finding a way out of your current problem before worrying trying that.

Funny how you must remind yourself of such a thing but it’s not like you’ve ever had a good head before.

Or maybe this is part of the plan all along? To use your current orby circumstance to play the helpless maiden while subtly influencing the battle? To conserve one’s energy and make the most out of things while your pal gals duke it out, with no risk of antagonizing either side? Is that the plan?

You’re not sure about the answer to that question or why you’re asking yourself such things in the first place. You’re Rumia after all, so of course you should know how Rumia thinks and how Rumia does! But what is a Rumia? What kind of Rumia are you now? That question is…

Better left for another time to be honest, there’s a thing happening right now so instead of doing nothing and thinking all these things to yourself. You should act and change things, THIS INSTANT!

Ghaaa….Ooghh….IIIIIGhhh…..Doo..ooo..o.ooonnn……t. Kn..o.oooww. E-E-e……pppppp….aaaaiiiiin…..ppp…….leeaaassseeeee.” with determination, you struggle hard to make out something that can be heard to Cirno as suffocation and pain team up to prevent that.

“Mhm?” And she does hear your moaning, “What was that buddy? You’re going to need speak louder here.” and responds back with mild confusion. “I heard an ow there, and if you meant to say ‘Cirno please save me, everything feels owy’ then just wait a minute so I can kick the Hakurei’s ass, okay?” but sadly it fails for anything you can say while stuck under that orb is just garble noise.

So, let’s fix that first.

With resolution, you try to move your body by just the tiniest bit. If you could somehow squirm out of this ridiculously huge orb, then you could easily speak clearly instead of being reduced to lowly moans and grunts of pains or the occasional gasp for air that doesn’t come. But it is of no effect.

Your body is not dislodged or removing itself in any way. The only thing that you’ve managed to do however is awkwardly put your arms in front of you, for the only part of you that’s free to move is everything above your shoulders. It’s like being a cripple in a way, except more painful. That terrible analogy done; you gain an even better idea the moment you glimpse at your hands. They have nails that can cut through flesh and a grip that shatters stone, not to forget the chainsaw thing too that combined with the former mentioned features could make for a way to free yourself in some way.

Not that it matters to anyone present, Meiling is still ‘thinking’ about her strategy, which if you were a cynical kind of person you’d suspect as her just stalling for time. Which is wrong for the concentration in her eyes and her posture show that she has full intent of winning this fight.

Reimu looks bored, poking the ground with her ofuda while occasionally giving a glance to the screen next to her. “So…do I just press a button or something? nothing happens when I click on the screen thingy.” Of course, nobody answers her inquiry and because of her not knowing how to play she loses more and more interest and grows more and more frustrated. “What a game this is…absolutely nothing’s happening! Hey, hurry it up Meiling! Choose already, there is a morning sale tomorrow and I refuse to miss it because of this dumb game!”

“Relax Hakurei, I’ve got an idea now that’s just cooked right…. now!” Meiling relents to Reimu’s demand with a confident smile, certain of her plan and cracks her knuckles in anticipation. “So, listen up Reimu, I’m kind of a half tank and half dps- “

“I don’t know what any of that means!” Reimu interrupts her, no less sated than before.

“Oh, hush, that’s okay. Just hear me out and I’ll guide us to victory.” Meiling shows three fingers. “What I meant to say is that my defense, attack, and health are super high, and I’ve got ways to make it even higher if I want to. I’m going to use the use the move “Fierce Tiger Qi Release'' to heal you back to full health and massively boost all your stats at once, so you can attack her at your leisure. Then next turn I will use the move ‘Dapeng Fist’ to stun and confuse Cirno alongside lowering her defensive stats so you can finish the job with your strongest attack. But if she is still alive despite that then I’m going to finish the job myself by with ‘Intense Rainbow Fist’ to attack her 8 times in a row and if that doesn’t work then I’ll combine both ‘Spiral Light Steps’ which gives me a buff that lets me take attacks for my allies and the ‘Counter’ move to return all damage she does back to her.” And she explains in a rather long way what she can do and how they should act together. Who knew that such obscure knowledge would one day aid in this exact situation?

“Huh, neat.” Reimu just nods, as if she understands what that means “And what you’re trying so say by that is…?” only to admit she doesn’t in the end and is still struggling with this whole thing.

“What I’m saying is: Feel free to explore your moves and I’ll do my best to support you, you rpg grasshopper! Just throw out your strongest attacks and follow my lead and we are sure to win!”

“Hm, I can do that. You do your move and I’ll have my fun, yeah. I can make do with that.” Reimu agrees to the plan and looks more invested in it again now that the boring wait time is over.

“Too bad you all just lost now.” Cirno speaks up, pointing a thumbs down at Meiling. “I told you explaining the rules was cheating, didn’t I? Well, you just cheated so now I w- “

“No, I didn’t!” Meiling doesn’t accept it though. “I explained what I was going to do, not how the game works in any way. So sorry to burst your bubble but suck on that loophole Ice Fairy!”

“I- “Cirno grows quiet at that, staring straight at Meiling for second or two. “Hm, oh I guess you’re right. You didn’t really cheat after all; I mean of course I knew that! I was just testing you two!” She relents to the loophole despite not liking it, since otherwise she’d just look pathetic. “That said, I’m going to penalize you anyway because I don’t like your attitude, so suck on that Meiling!”

“Hey, that’s not f- “

DON’T CARE! Your turn is skipped because you took too long, cry if you want, I’ll just freeze your tears!” Cirno interrupts Meiling before she can protest again and points at you now. “It’s Rumia’s turn now and after that Reimu’s and then it’ll be my turn and then Meiling’s turn! That’s the turn order! Now shut up and play the game correctly!”
Of course, both girls are not okay with Cirno just skipping Meiling’s turn. But Cirno doesn’t care about that, she’s the one who makes the rules after all and instead of talking some more just looks down on them with a satisfied smirk. Ignoring them afterwards to address you, “Don’t mind those losers and choose your move, bud. I know being stuck under a rock is kind of hard to deal with, but you can still help me out somehow. You will help right? Damn right you will, I can always count on you. Let's kick their buts together!” she looks away from you after saying that.

Giving you the time to think about helping her.... Yeah, no.! You helping her right is a situation that's very unlikely in every possible way.

Mostly because you don’t’ want to help her and because that damn orb on top of you is just too distracting!

The Red-white orb which as you were saying: you’re thinking about cutting your lower body off to free yourself from. Sure, it’d be painful and an easy way to bleed out too. But it’s still a better thing than feeling your bones shatter, your skin fizzle and being forced to watch the girls you like fight one another while you’re stuck in the side-lines like some b-tier character that’s only there to narrate the fight and make some funny expressions while all the cool and important stuff is given to the real protags.

Unacceptable, no matter what has happened so far. This is still YOUR adventure, and you refuse to have no real control over the situation, what’s the point of struggling to come here so far if you decide to back off once things actually get exciting? No, you will find the truth! You will get out of this dumb rock and kick Cirno’s butt! And you will find the culprit and have your reveangence!

You may not like fighting your friend, hell you’d hate to ruin her having fun. But helplessly watching someone else beat her and to be mistaken for being at her side afterwards is way worse! IF you have to pick a side then you’re going to pick the right one rather than wistfully trying to play both teams!

No matter how stupid it is and despite how terrible it. You’re going to do things the Rumia way!

So then, let’s cut of your lower body. You concentrate as much as you’re able, really try your best mentally and from within the flesh of your right hand rises out a pink chainsaw, it makes no sense, but it left your hand as easily as a duck that pokes their head out of the water.

Anyway, you grasp the thing firmly with both your hands and awkwardly to place it over your head just to learn one’s hands do not bend such a way…which doesn’t make sense since you don’t have bones.

Or at least you think you don’t have bones so why would such a move not be possible then? Whatever, you can still move the thing without your hands so with some concentration the saw meets your back, its blades feel sharp and cold on your skin, and you realize that even if this thing can cut you in half the process is going to be so painful, you could die of shock because of it. Despite that, you will do it. You can do it and because only your legs and feet are shown to the others, they won’t notice you cutting yourself until you’ve activated the chainsaw so they can’t stop you from doing this either.

Of course, all those words are easy to say but doing it way harder. You only need to activate the thing so it can tear through your body, push it deeper within you as it is doing so and don’t let go or stop the thing mid-way because you’re certain that if you stop then you’ll lose the courage to continue. A small part of you wants to stop just because of that notion, that part wants you to call out to Reimu and Meiling instead, to explain that you were never on Cirno’s side and ask for their aid, to be removed from this state so you can join them on their fight against your chilly friend. But you are too stubborn and know that they won’t be convinced. Saying such a thing in this situation would only make you look like a coward who’s trying to save their own skin, even if you’re not.

You activate the chainsaw and hear its roar go out. Except you didn’t. The stubbornness you were talking about is working against you too for it does not care about sides. Your self-preservation instincts, which rarely if ever act up are now fighting harder than ever to stop you from doing this.

Mild frustration comes to you because of that, which is funny. Since you’re certain you should be feeling like you’re about to cry, have a panic attack or feel absolutely miserable. But no, all you have is a dead calm matched only by the certainty that you must do this. You feel like you should feel something about this dissonance but there is nothing, only some frustration at your body’s reluctance to obey and the pain that you’re still feeling and cannot ignore however you try.

You close your eyes and think very hard about cutting down some delicious meal with the chainsaw. Hoping that if you imagine it hard enough then you could fool your self-preservation instincts into thinking you’re cutting down a fancy beef dish only be rudely woken up the moment the engine goes on and rips through your body in a time so sudden and short that nothing can stop it.

But you can’t get it to work, you’re too conscious off the feeling of cold steel on your back, your imagination is making up the many scenarios on how this is going to go wrong and that feeling of calm is starting to dissipate and from what your moistening eyes can tell you, will be replaced by fear if you don’t do it now. You must do it now, it’s the only way! You’ve cut a box out of your stomach, and this is no less complicated or painful! Make the right decision for once in your meaningless life!

[X] Cut yourself off the orb, do it, do it, do it! It’s the only true way to free yourself!
[X] Give up, it’d be too painful, surely the Hakurei will let you go if you tell her that you are on her side!
[X] Calm down…calm down, do something else, you have a turn so use it well. [Write-in]

Haha, this time updating did not take a whole week!
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…So let me get this straight. We have enough strength to saw ourselves in half under the weight of this orb, an action which requires extensive use of not only our arms, but also our magic and our lungs to fuel our saw and ourselves, yet we do not have enough strength to speak even a single sentence? Moving our mouth is much much easier than moving our arms and requires less energy and lung capacity. Even just a whisper would get the message across.

Also it is interesting that both of the previous write in options given for the last update involve speaking, and yet when you commented on the viability of the two options you mentioned nothing about Rumia being unable to talk under the weight of the orb. Its almost as if you realized that the winning write in would quickly, easily, and logically result in Cirno’s defeat and scrambled to think up a reason why we couldn’t do it no matter how little sense it made (despite the fact that the winning write in predicted two other logical outcomes that wouldn’t kill Cirno).

You are trying to railroad us and I will not stand for it.

[x] If you can muster up enough strength to saw yourself in half, then you can easily muster up enough strength to ask Cirno one fucking question. So gather up your strength and determination and ask Cirno to explain the rules for you! Do not let your turn end until Cirno tells you how to play!
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what the hell you tricked her
>>31973

First off, I am sorry I made you feel that way and secondly do refer to the quote below:

>For now, the object can decide how you feel and lower your inhibitions towards more extreme and or insane acts. So, in a word, it’s hard to not end up going crazy.

Don't forget the times something sounded like your thoughts, but it wasn't you talking at all. Or one of the many odd voices you've been hearing in your head that tried to convince you of doing things that won't help at all as another thing.

Your votes do make sense and will work, but what I have failed to imply is that there is something inside Rumia that doesn't want her to succeed. Hence it uses the momentary disappointment she had in failing to talk good the first time to divert her thoughts towards a more extreme action that would hopefully lead to her demise if she does follow on it rather than simply trying again with more success. (Since YES, trying to talk again is way more efficient than trying to cut yourself in half.)

TLDR: The voices or voice in the head have or has progressed to the point that they're now indistinguishable from Rumia's own and she has yet to realize that herself. So naturally they would try to convince you to take the most self-destructive action and if that doesn't work just try to distract you from taking the right decision that you've already decided on. The longer you don't find a 'cure' for this, the more unreliable your own perception of things will become. Hence once the timer runs out...I won't say what happens, but you can guess that it'd be pretty bad. Hence the attempted progress from blatant attempt to manipulate you to odd way to try it and etc, they're learning in a way and will continue to do so until you submit.

I am now aware that this has come off as a cheap twist and me trying to rail-road you into not being able to simply talk.
For that I apologize and I'm sure a better writer could have conveyed this far better than the way I just did this.

I shall get rid of the bias that just because something makes sense to me that it also would to someone else.

Again, I am sorry for failing to write the previous update correctly and will make the next update better than the last one.

That is to say the update I just wrote right now!





> If you can muster up enough strength to saw yourself in half, then you can easily muster up enough strength to ask Cirno one fucking question. So, gather up your strength and determination and ask Cirno to explain the rules for you! Do not let your turn end until Cirno tells you how to play!

…Y-you can’t do it, just can’t do it! No matter how hard you try, a part of your mind is telling you that this is completely insane, you stop. Proving that this is just an act that’s too sudden and extreme for even you.

B-but you must cut yourself in half! You have to do it, it’s the only way!

Do you have to do it? …Or do you just want you to do it?

No, of course not. Of course, you don’t want to do it, but still, you’re just trying to do what’s best for you. What you want doesn’t really matter in that end and sometimes people must cut themselves in half to get what they want. It makes total sense if you think about it, so just stop struggling and k-maim yourself.

Wait…no? no! that doesn’t make sense at all! If you can muster the effort to cut yourself in half, then why can’t you just muster the effort to speak anyway? It’s just a single sentence! hell only a single question needs to come out for your plan to work and that’s way safer and easier than maiming yourself! That cutting plan makes no sense at all!

Nonsense, you don’t know what’s right for yourself at all. Have you ever heard the saying: Know Thyself? Well, in a way that translates to this. ‘When you’re screwed, you must quickly realize the fact that you’re screwed and cut yourself in half’ see, it totally makes sense.

…No, it’s NOT! DEFINITELY NOT, no number of years could make it so that such a sentence or thought could even make the slightest amount of sense! It’s beyond stupid, it’s madness! Only a mad person would do that! That’s not something you would have done yourself or thought off in any normal circumstance. There’s just no way!

Hm, that is correct. Then maybe you are insane Rumia? If so, then what is important is how fast you realize this. However, to know whether you are sane or not, you must first have had the experience of being insane beforehand. If one has not already being screwed for example, then they will end either end up being incapable of realizing that they are in a screwed situation, or even if they do realize it, they will realize it a step too late. Therefore, in order to know thyself, you must cut yourself so you can experience the experience of being screwed many times. Easy, right?

You…uh, what? You’re not sure what you’re talking about or why you’re even thinking such a thing. You’ve already decided that your idea to cut yourself in half was a terrible one, so just let it go already. You must be in a bad headspace if you thought for a moment that that was a genuine good idea and while you’d love to think some more about it, you have a Cirno to talk to right now.

True, but before you open your mouth. Another thought comes, one that though like the last one is completely different: The term ‘Know Thyself’ roughly translates to ‘Be screwed as many times as possible’. However, what is the reason we’re trying to listen to proverbs in the first place? Is it not precisely because we do not wish to be screwed? Not only is the proverb ‘Know thyself’ meaningless, but it also destroys the meaning of existence for proverbs themselves. You could also say that it is the most worthless proverb in the world.

Okay? That’s an odd thought to have but how in the heck is that relevant in any way to your current situation? It doesn’t, therefore whatever you’re thinking about right is now just a waste of time.

Nonsense, with just a little bit more focus and introspection you realize that there is a deeper meaning to all this, one that is not an attempt to make you waste time in hopes of bad things happening. No surette!

That’s enough. You’re not sure why your mind is such a mess right now, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is your turn right now and that you must use the opportunity to do something. You open your mouth, gather your energy, and say the following line: “Cirno, explain to me the rules off this thing. I don’t get how any of this works at all.” Add in a few spaces, some aaahs and oohs alongside grunts and that’d be the thing you just said to the friend that’s sitting on top of you.

“What?” Again, Cirno hears you. Mostly because she’s super close to your position and actively waiting for your response and all. “Do you want to explain the mules? Don’t you mean rules?” you nod intensively once she figures out what you mean. “Oh…then sure, listen up!” Cirno with absolutely no regard for the presence of her opponents decides to speak out loud the rules of her little game because you asked for it. “So, like, everybody plays in a turn-based fashion. That means nobody can act at the same time since turns are the times, you’re allowed to do stuff- “and she spares absolutely no detail. “I figured I’d make something like this a game so that I’m naturally the strongest and can make up my own rules rather than having to play some girly game. And so far, that’s been working fine so far, just look yourself- “of course she adds in the occasional boast or two, but you’re surprised that the only thing you needed to do to get this out of her is to just ask her nicely again after failing to do so the last time. It was so simple, yet you tried to cut yourself in half at the slightest sign of trouble…at the first sign of resistance the most violent way came to your mind yet simply talking to her was all you needed to make her talk. “So, then there’s like magic and summoning and blade arts and really everybody gets a little piece of the pie to show off, but of course I’m still- “and talk she does, you don’t see her even take a moment to breathe or think about what she’s saying.

Every word that comes out of her is a complete and non-stopping explanation of her own little system.

“Okay, that’s enough!” After a total of five minutes of non-stop talking. Reimu intervenes. “We get it, we get it! You explained how everything works, so Rumia knows how to play, I know how to play, everybody knows how to play so shut up and continue fighting us already!” she says she understands how to play the game now, but she doesn’t look happy on the way the info was delivered in a ramble, not that you care much for that, you did your part after all.

“Wait what?!” Cirno jumps on her seat, completely surprised that her opponents have somehow overheard all this. “Did you listen in on us? You weren’t supposed to hear that! You’re all just a bunch of cheaters!” and she at once accuses them both again.

“Incorrect.” Meiling speaks up, her finger raised in the air for some reason. “The only cheater in this room…is YOU!” then just as intensely as she said that line, she lowers her finger and points straight at Cirno.
“You explained the rules, which is against the rules. So now….” Meiling does a dramatic pause.

“You’ve already lost.” Reimu concludes for her. “I don’t know how you’ll be ‘insta-killed’ but rules are rules, so you better brace yourself.”

“….” Cirno takes a moment to process that in silence. “Wait NO!” then she realizes that she messed up and quickly turns towards you in anger, flying all the way towards your face so she can hiss in it. “YOU IDIOT! Look at what you made me do!” just as quickly she starts dramatically pointing a finger towards you too. “Here I’m being nice to you, treating you with the best of care and then you just screw everything up with your stupidity! Did you do that on purpose? If so then I’ll—” she pauses for a moment, then lets out an immensely frustrated sigh as she grabs her head with both hands. “No that can’t be, you simply didn’t mean to, right? You wanted to be useful to me and I’m the one that made the mistake, right? Yeah, that must be it. You would have never betrayed me since I’m in the right. I’m in the right…” she mumbles more things but in short terms she’s just trying to make sense of what happened just now in brooding anger, of course just cause she's quiet that doesn't mean she's composed if the way she's completely red and stomping the ground say anything. She's fully angered, completely enraged and needs a moment to herself to not make a clown of herself.

Even so, no divine lightning or intense snowball comes to crush her for the cheating. And maybe there won’t be one, since she never expected to be the one to be disqualified, she was probably planning to attack cheaters for free. The way she’s just fuming in silence now implies she did lose.

“So, did we win? I think we won! “Meiling celebrates and tends a hand to the Hakurei for a high-five.

Which by miracle Reimu responds towards by raising her own hand back at her, of course being Reimu she adds in a little comment with an it-can’t-be-helped hand gesture “This was the shortest and most boring fight I’ve ever been in, but it was an experience that would make for a nice story.”

They have won, as much as that really didn’t feel like a battle.
To them the sweet taste of victory has nevertheless not lost its juicy flavour.

Despite that, the orb stuck on you hasn’t been removed.

You guess that it’s because Reimu sees that little trick of yours as nothing more than a lucky case of idiocy between two dumb youkai’s that have only a single braincell. It’s kind of a shame that she looks that down on you. Maybe if you had cut yourself in half then that would have been a more notable action which would have convinced her that you’re truly on her side with your self-less action, but noooooooo.

Why are you still suck on that? Never mind, you decide to move on. There’s still a single thing that’s a bit worrisome, aside from the orb you mean. It’s that the background hasn’t changed back by now.

“It’s not over yet…” On cue, Cirno speaks up again. Her arms crossed in a defensive position. “So don’t go celebrating yet! I’ve still got a trump card after all!” and she’s about to reveal an…something? You guess it’s about to be her phase two or something equally dumb.

“How great and what would that be?” Reimu asks back, her hands on her hips as she looks on a non-existing wristwatch. “Is it a phase 2?”

“No, it’s something much grander!” Cirno moves off the orb that she’s sitting on and points at you with both of her arms. “It’s Rumia! She’s still alive after all and it is still her turn! She’s going to kick both of your asses, that much I know. Because she and I believe in each other!”

…Oh.

Oh indeed.

To be honest, you kind of braced yourself on the possibility that she’d realize she was tricked by you after the whole asking for the rules bit.

But now you’re actually going to have to break the news to her that you’re not on her side, betraying her the very moment she’s counting on you. How juicy of a thing that’s going to be. Say the wrong words and she might hate you forever after this, but that is okay right?



Right?

Yeah, uh, no. It’s not all right but even if she’ll despise you for it there’s no way you’re going to change sides now of all things. You’ll break the news to her; hope she understand and if not…

That’ll be yet another friendship that’s gone and sailed away. Maybe that’ll be a recurring thing. The only two people you need to alienate now are Wriggle and Mystia and ding dong, you’re friendless at the end! The adventure has ended yet there’s no happy end for you!

You hate how that’s true, but even so you take a deep breath…except you don’t, you’re kind of choking but ahem. You mentally steel herself and say the first thing that comes to mind in the best voice you can. You're not sure how to say that you're not going to join her, but you can definitely think off a reason why helping her would be insane in the first place.

[X] You don’t mind her taking over the world, but if it’s going to be at the cost of other people and our friends then you refuse to sit by quietly. She failed this time, she can try next time, she should accept the loss of today and go home.

[X] You're not sorry and even if it cheesy. Actions do have consequences, if she tries to 'take over the world' then don’t be surprised if nobody’s on your side. She tried her best and she failed, she should take responsibility for her actions.

[X] She was just being used, whatever power she got out of this could just as easily be taken away. She was a pawn that taught herself clever and you had to remind her she's better than this. She should join you and fight the real final boss.

[X] A write-in option because surely there’s a better way to say that you’re not on her side and or why that’s the case. Or something else. Or maybe a mix of both, just choose or vote whatever you feel is right to you in this scenario.
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[x] Cirno, you’ve gone completely insane! The Spaghetti Goddess is making you kill and torture people, even your friends. Because of all the stuff you are doing Wriggle is dead and I’m going to die soon too, and you are so far gone that you don’t have any problem with that. You even threatened to use your evil mind control rod on me if I didn’t join you. The Cirno I know would never do something like that, and I would do anything to get my friend back. If betraying you is the only way to bring my friend Cirno back, then I would happily do so a thousand times!
-[x] skip, run, defend, or pick whatever other option is available to waste your turn.

Cirno has lost it, we want her to stop being lost, and we need Reimu and Meiling to know we are on their side.
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>>31975

Damn, you're saying that whole thing in the perfect tone. I like that a lot, I couldn't have said such a thing better myself even. I'll update the story as soon as possible just for that line.
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> Cirno, you’ve gone completely insane! The Spaghetti Goddess is making you kill and torture people, even your friends. Because of all the stuff you are doing Wriggle is dead and I’m going to die soon too, and you are so far gone that you don’t have any problem with that. You even threatened to use your evil mind control rod on me if I didn’t join you. The Cirno I know would never do something like that, and I would do anything to get my friend back. If betraying you is the only way to bring my friend Cirno back, then I would happily do so a thousand times!

No, nada, no way, absolutely not! Those words are just one of the few ways you want to make clear to your former friend that you would never, ever, join her side. Regardless of all circumstances, there’s a limit to what a person should do and oh boy has she breached that line.

Hell, even if you yourself are kind of a chaotic person, you just know that some rules are there so that little slice of youkai heaven one calls Gensokyo can prosper properly. It’s the only place you can live at so doing anything to mess it up (For real) is a really, really, bad idea that only the insane would ever have!

Insane…somehow that word just feels very fitting for the person who’s currently expecting you to join her side despite being the one that’s responsible for most of your sufferings, that person with her insufferable smile on her face and cocky pose who’s awaiting your next move oh so eagerly…

Oh, you’ll deliver a move all right! “You know what? Maybe, I was having the wrong idea about you twice in a row…Cirno.” with immense strain, you let out those words with the darkest tone you can muster as a new sensation enters your body. It’s a feeling…unknown yet it grips your heart like a vice and makes the feeling of pain in your body feel so negligible that you speak as clearly as possible (Within your current conditions) while staring your former friend deep in the eyes, your gaze drilling through her head if only it was allowed to or if you could shoot lasers through your eyes. Perhaps you can if you stare hard enough, but you don't, the time of being silly has passed and you've never felt more serouis.

To your surprise, Cirno actually notices the change in attitude. “What’s with that voice? That echo business was creepy for a second, but could it be that you finally accepted your place?” she becomes genuinely excited at that thought and her smug smile becomes genuinely warm as she offers you a hand…to stand up? You’re not sure why she would offer one when you’re still under an orb, “I’ll show you that working with me isn’t a mistake. I’m sure you’ve gone through a lot to even get here but believe me when I say this. You and I are going to achieve something that’s far beyond anything. And once this adventure is over, I’ll have my new subjects bake a cake the size of a mountain just for you!” despite you not having budged an inch, she warmly takes your hand and shakes it by herself.

Shouldn’t we stop this? I think we should stop this.” Meiling comments aloud, certain before you wouldn’t be dumb enough to take Cirno’s offer but since you declared yourself to be on Cirno’s side earlier, that confidence is out the window. “Rumia, don’t be silly kid! You don’t have t-

Don’t bother trying to reach out to her.” Reimu casually shrugs off Meiling’s attempt to reach you (as unneeded as it is) before it can even happen. “This kind of decision is something a person should make themselves.” And she ends the sentence by nodding to herself as if she said something wise.

Meiling isn’t okay with that and looks at Reimu as if she said something really dumb instead, “Reimu, you must be joking! I don’t want to hurt Rumia and I’m sure she’ll listen if we try to make her understand what’s happening! She’s just being tricked or something! She’s not a bad girl! Just really d-

“Even so, do not take the choice away from her.” Reimu doesn’t care and remains firm.

Bu-

Say anything more and you will have to worry about three opponents, Meiling.

What? WHAT!? You must be bluffing. There’s no way you…” as if struck by a headache, the martial artist puts one hand on her forehead and lets out a sigh the moment Reimu stares into her eyes. “Fine, but you better explain yourself later. I'm not working for you and if I am you should be paying me for my time.” And with reluctance, relents to the Hakurei albeit with some sarcasm as she grows more tired of her company.

Sure, sure. Now shut up and watch the show.” Reimu looks pleased by that and you’re not sure why that’s the case or why they would even talk that loud when you’re this close and can hear them!

But as far as you care right now, their cases don’t matter. With your hand held by Cirno’s own (the wrong hand on the fricking back no less), you press into some of your strength to yank her closer to your face, eyes burning with a desire that you cannot hold in any longer. “Nah, you really don’t get it. What I was wrong about is the idea that whether you are being manipulated…matters even in the slightest, you 9!

Huh?” a dumb face of surprise shows on Cirno’s face the moment you say that. “Why would y-

You continue talking. Your voice almost sounding like you’re speaking twice at the same time somehow. “That was not the only thing I was wrong about, whether you’re my friend or not, whether you truly understand what you’re doing or not, whether you truly don’t have any malice in this or not, none of that changes the fact that you’re batshit insane for being involved this in the first place!” all that self-doubt and all those conflicting feelings were in the end nothing more than a distraction, a stupid hindrance that a proper youkai wouldn’t be having in the first place. But it’s okay now, “Actions speak more than words and what you’ve done speaks enough for a thousand. You’ve harmed and killed people all because a voice in your head told you to do so, because some ‘Spaghetti God’ tempted you with some sweet whispers and some powers you’ve abandoned everyone in this place to rot, even your own friends as if that’s the only reason you needed to do that. And not only the worst part but the most noticeable too, you don’t regret a single thing, no, you’re outright proud of what you’ve done so far and think of it as an achievement. Something to put in a photo album once you’re done violating every single aspect that made me the real you, the you that I respected and thought of as a genuine comrade. Someone who’s search for was the last request I received from Wriggle…just to learn that you’re responsible for her past’s and my future’s end. There’s no way to describe how ironic and painful such a revelation is but even that is nothing compared to the fates that you’ve inflicted on other innocent people, the people you’ve frozen into statues and forced to remain conscious in such a helpless state are suffering more than I ever was! Those fairies whose bodies you’ve let to be messed with as some god pleases or not pleases are no joke either! I don’t know if they’ve joined willingly but seeing how you’re treating them and the fact you mentioned you could control anyone with that fancy rod you have make me think that’s the case. Of course, that doesn’t mean I forgot the fact you casually threatened to use it on me either but if I had to list down every single little thing that’s fucked up about this situation then even a hundred hours wouldn’t be enough now, would it? Don’t look so surprised friend, ANYONE WHO WOULD JOIN YOU HAS TO BE THE SICKEST, DEPRAVED AND CRAZIEST PERSON THAT HAS EVER LIVED!!!

Hearing your words, Cirno grows silent, lets go of the back of your hand and thinks about your words. “Hmm, so is that a maybe then?” yet that dense creature still does not understand your refusal.

Which is unlikely, she must be in denial, so you say it again, “Does it sound like a MAYBE? Fine, I’ll make it extra clear then. Whatever you are, you’re not my Cirno. And though I’d do anything in the world to get her back, I’d deny your goals with my every being, and I’d gladly do so a thousand times!

Oh…you-uh, do you really mean that?” Cirno’s words lose confidence as she genuinely looks surprised by your reaction, if not hurt by what she now understands is your rising aggression. “Honestly, if you weren’t glaring at me like that, then I’d think you’d just be playing hard to get. But you’re not, I don’t know why you would even say that now instead of making it clear earlier and I totally did not threaten you, how dare you even think th-ahem. I reluctantly understand that…” Cirno swallows something in her throat and looks you straight in the eyes with a betrayed expression, but no less will-power than before in it. “You’ve clearly been brainwashed, it’s a shame to hear that the whole anon thing has driven you mad before you came here but don’t worry. For once I’ve beaten up those two losers behind you, I’ll be sure to treat you right and find a wa-

I. WILL. NOT. JOIN. YOU. EVER.” You hiss again at her to get the message across.

But-

No.”

Oh come o-

No.

Really, no?

No.

Ah, so you’re saying ye-

No.

OKAY FINE, SHUT UP I GET IT! I GET IT ALREADY!” Enraged by your continued rejections, Cirno flares up and puts her hands around her ears to defensively as she tries to outshout you. “YOU’RE JUST STUPID THEN! I WAS TRYING TO HELP YOU STUPID! I WAS GOING TO LET SEE THE SIGHTS YOU WOULDN’T EVER SEEN IN YOUR LIFE OTHERWISE YOU STUPID! AND THIS IS HOW YOU SHOW YOUR GRATITUDE? YOU PRETEND TO BE ON MY SIDE, YOU LISTEN TO ME TELL YOU EVERYTHING LIKE A GOON JUST SO YOU CAN STAB ME IN THE BACK?! DO YOU THINK THAT’S FUNNY?! ARE YOU TRYING TO MAKE A CLOWN? DO YOU THINK I’M A CLOWN RUMIA? WELL, GUESS WHAT THE ONLY CLOWN HERE IS YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!” the emotional distress from what she perceives as an et tu Brutus moment makes her go into a fit, the veins on her head become very visible, her face gains a purple tint as she doesn’t breathe, she's shouting unoriginal insults at you, her hands clench so tight that her knuckles become white and the way her body twists and turns makes it look like she might be having a spasm. “YOU TREACHEROUIS CLOWN! YOU BACKSTABBING BALOONEY! YOU DISLOYAL DONKEY! YOU THINK YOU CAN MESS WITH ME?! YOU THINK YOU CAN MESS WITH MEEE? WELL GUESS WHAT, YOU’RE JUST A FAKE TO ME TOO! YOU MESSED UP BUCKO AND I’LL MAKE YOU UNDERSTAND THAT EVEN IF I HAVE TO KILL YOU A THOUSAND TIMES FOR IT! YOU’LL BE JOINING ME WHETHER YOU WANT TO OR NOT, RUMIAAA!

You can try, but you won’t succeed. Cirno.” you respond back in kind to her rage. Though your anger has shown itself once again as a stone-cold river compared to her ironical blazing flames, you do not notice that the surroundings have changed back to normal since the moment you made her lose her ability to concentrate despite her ‘crown’ by hurting her in a way that no person has ever done before this. Because she has hurt you in a way that no person has ever done before this! Perhaps you’ll be able to make a joke on how this is the most twisted way to use the power of friendship in the future but right now you’re too distracted to even notice the fact that you’re no longer being crushed by a ying-yang orb and are instead engaging in a shouting match with your dear old blue, former best chilly buddy in what is surprisingly not some weird chess-world that’s overtaking your perception in the possible worst of times for once. But just the throne room.

There you have it.” The hakurei says a short distance from you two with both of her orbs at her side and Meiling close by. For some reason she has a satisfied expression. “By doing absolutely nothing, our foe has been defeated and an ally has shown itself. Do you now see the charm of doing nothing Meiling? If so, then go ahead and take care of the dumb fairy while she’s distracted, pretty please or do I have to pay a premium?

“…” Meiling is not enjoying the situation, looking at the fight between you two with a hint of pity and sadness even if it is the juiciest kind of nonsense to other folks. “You just wanted to hear them fight, didn’t you?” juicy nonsense which she assumes is the reason the hakurei has not intervened up til now.

It’s part of the reason, when’s the last time you’ve seen a good old bicker?” and she’d be right, if it wasn’t for the sarcastic tone and the eye-roll that Reimu gives in response. “Please, do I look like a certain witch? Unlike some people, I don’t have time to waste so taking the easy option is simply better. Just shut up and go kick that fairy in the back of the head with a jumping kick or whatever kung-fu you have while she’s this open and completely defenseless before she catches on.” As if to demonstrate, Reimu takes a moment to stomp on Letty’s head, who though unmentioned for a while was starting to get erringly close to regaining her conscience, now she’s back to dreamland. “See, like that. An easy one and a two kick to the skull and night, night, Cirno shall go.

I CAN HEAR YOU BASTARDS!” Cirno takes a moment to announce the thing you’ve been wanting to say for a while now as well. “Do you have any idea how big this room is? Our voices echo everywhere and the fact you’re not even a few steps away doesn’t help matters!

As cynical as it may sound, you’ve concluded that everyone you’ve met in your journey is a little bit dumb in their own unique way. If stupidity was a trading card game, then your pockets would be full by now.

I’M DONE WITH THIS; I’M SO DONE WITH ALLL OF YOU!” The purple tint on Cirno’s face has grown to completely cover her body. She’s been shouting so much that she fails to consider breathing. Immediately she tries to fly towards the big canon machine thingy only to realize that everyone just as swiftly moves to get in her way, preventing her from reaching it. “OH, YOU THINK YOU CAN STOP ME? YOU THINK ANY OF YOU CAN GET IN MY WAY HUH?!” Cirno, even though she’s already shouting to the point that she’s suffocating. Finds it in herself to yell even louder than before. “GUAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARDS, THERE ARE INTRUDERS! TAKE THEM DOWN THIS INSTANT!



But nobody arrives. Why is that? Oh gee, I wonder what happens when you put guards outside of the building but none inside. Or what happens the moment you tell your guards to go outside again after a meeting where most of them were inside. Sure, maybe they’re meant to prevent people from getting inside but how are you going to kick anyone out if there’s nobody to guard the inside. And that’s not to forget how easy it was for you and the others to enter anyway!

Again, what an incompetent security. You wouldn’t be surprised if that’s Cirno’s own fault.

SO, BE IT! I’LL MAKE THEM APPEAR!” further annoyed, Cirno raises her regal rod into the air with one of her hands. In response it starts to shine brightly and is kicked out of her hand by a flying kick courtesy of Meiling. Who just as quickly grabs Cirno by the shoulders, pushes her to the ground and grabs one of her arms to put in an awkward position to firmly hold her in a grapple. “I didn’t want to interrupt, but your open guard was just too tempting to just ignore. Oh! Don’t bother struggling! Work another thousand years and you’ll be able to escape my technique’s grip, one day.” The martial artist doesn’t sound that apologetic and holds the fairy firm on the ground while it’s trashing about and trying to make her let go, wasting her own energy as Meiling’s grip is as firm as that of a tiger. "And now to press your pressure points, oh, just a sec, I've almost got you." and she's about to finish the job, ending this entire encounter in the most boring way possible with absolutely zero catharsis.

Before you can even think or snark about how terrible that is, Reimu has closed the distance between the two of you. Holding one of Letty’s legs as she gives your side a shove to gain your attention. Her face is oddly glarefree, and she speaks to you in a calm way as if that's not somehow even more intimidating. “You look really unsatisfied, were you expecting some climatic fight or what? To be honest so did I, but eh, this just makes thing easier, no?” In a way she sounds straight up bored and uncaring and for once you couldn't care less about what she's saying, “Seriously, are you okay? you're looking pretty pale.” something that she notices immediately.

Huh?” you’re not sure if you heard that sentence right, for just a second it sounded like she was asking if you’re okay. Which is impossible, it just can’t be, “I’m sorry, did you say something?” even so, it got some of your attention back to her and out of whatever hole your mind was about to jump into just now.

So you’ve gone deaf then?” Reimu waves her hand up and down at you as if to see if you’re still awake. Then she repeats her line with a surprising lack of condescension or snark. “I asked if you’re okay. You’ve said a lot of interesting things and I’m sure that standing up to a close friend like that must have been stressful too. Not to forget the orb thing, oh, sorry about that by the way. It's just strictly business, nothing personal and all.

You’re not sure how to react to...whatever it is she’s doing right now. The hakurei has never spoken in such a gentle tone to you, so you can’t help but feel immensely on edge as you wait for a twist.

Oh, so you DO resent me for that one, or did you freeze up or something?” One never comes, if anything it makes her talk even more and you’re not sure if that’s good or bad. “Hey, if you think you’re in danger then don’t worry. You’re not. Whatever this whole thing is clearly something you’re not supporting. Your little speech said that muc-look, are you going to say anything or what?

…” you still don’t answer, you don’t even know why. It’s like your brain needs…you don’t know.

Okay, continued silence it is. Or oh, could it be…was I being too ambitious here? How about a single word then? If you can’t say a full line, then just say a single thing. A tiny single word, how about that?” Reimu with what you assume must be a rare case of patience takes on the tiniest amount of humour to make you open up. “Come on now, I know you can talk, I won't bite so just say something.


[ ] Write-in.
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Let's continue being a big girl and saying what's on our mind.

[x] I'm not okay.

Also, don't think we didn't notice the metal gear rising reference.
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“I’m not okay.” The words come naturally, though you should be happy that Cirno has been defeated and that this is a ‘stage 4’ as has been mentioned by her… “It doesn’t make me feel happy at all, if anything there’s a feeling of something I can’t quite understand which makes me frustrated…and I don’t even know how to describe that feeling or if it’s something I’m actually feeling myself instead of the…the weird things I’ve being seeing and hearing recently.” You pause at that, not because you have nothing more to say but because you’re not sure how the hakurei will react. Will she shrug it off? Think you’re joking or get annoyed at how you’re venting at her? The possibilities by themself frighten you...

“You’re not okay?” The hakurei parrots back at you, not that surprised by the claim due to her amazing perception, something she has always had. “And you’re not okay in what kind of way?”

“I-I just told you?” never mind that amazing perception bit, you’re a bit surprised that she did not understand the very thing you explained a second ago. “I’m not okay because I’m not happy.”

“I understand that much, what I meant to ask was: What has made you unhappy?” again, she parrots back your previous sentence in a way while at the same time demanding you repeat.

Again, you’ve already said why. Does she not pay attention to your words? It makes your temper flare up a bit and you respond back with a biting comment, “Are you dense or what? I’ve already said what’s my problem in this, so why are you asking me to say it three times in a row?”

“No, you haven’t.” The hakurei’s tone changes to a sharp one, not caring much for your comment. “You said that you don’t feel happy, because you feel you should be happy yet you’re not. Then you talk about a feeling that you can’t describe as if you expect me to understand what it is if you don’t, like I could understand you better than you understand yourself. Finally, you end it all by offhandedly referencing something that I’ve got no context for either.” Yet again she has repeated all your statements without giving anything back in turn. You move to talk back but the Hakurei blatantly puts one hand over your mouth to tell to shut up. “Don’t talk, I’m not done yet. So, what I’m saying is: You’re saying a lot while at the same time not saying anything. So why don’t you elaborate on what’s troubling you in short and easy to understand words before I must remind you that I’m not your mind-doctor and don’t have to listen to anything you may have to vent about, okay?” and for a moment she reverts to her usual self as she does not care for nonsense or maybe grows defensive because she feels that you're being unfair on her. You'd know if you actually had the social skills to read a person's body langauge or social cues.

There’s still a hand keeping your mouth shut, so you can’t respond to that question.

She removes it and dusts it against her puffy pants, dress? You don’t know what it is, but you do recognize the hand-motion she gives afterwards. It means, “Do go on then, Rumia” most likely.

You do, “I can’t believe Cirno is working for the culprit, nor why she wo- “

“She is working for the culprit though, she confessed it herself just a moment ago.”

“I KNOW that.”

“Then why did you say you can’t believe she’s working for the culprit? She obviously is, like how two plus two makes four. The result won’t be five no matter how hard you want to believe otherwise.”

“No, that’s not what I meant. What I did mean was that I find it hard to believe Cirno of all people would willingly work and inflict such terrible things to people…it’s like she’s a different person.”

“…? But I- “Reimu looks confused by your words, shuts herself up to think some more before answering again, “You’ve said with no input from anyone else that that doesn’t matter though? How even if she was tricked or not, that would-look, why do I have to spoon-feed you your own words? Something that minor shouldn’t affect you so much that you stop being consistent.” she gets a bit more annoyed for you fail to make sense to her, “Look, Cirno’s just a stage boss, no matter how hard she boasted about herself that doesn’t change the fact she went down in an instant. Why she joined or what she’ll do after this doesn’t matter because her role is over now.”

“Her role is over now?” you’re not sure what Reimu’s talking about. “Wait...are you going to exterminate her?” but your logic comes with the morbid conclusion that the easiest way to put someone down for the count…especially if they’re a fairy is to just murder them, so they’ll be gone.

“What if I am?” Reimu returns the question, using one of her hands to scratch an itch on her cheek before looking again at you with some minor attention, a little bit off annoyance and a tiny droplet of empathy being the main reason she’s even amusing you right now. “Would that be a problem?”

[X] I don’t care what you do to her, she’s just a faker anyway. The real one must be somewhere else.
[X] Definitely, she’d be let off to easy if you did that. She must pay. She will pay!
[X] It’s funny…she’s not getting it. Return the subject and try to explain everything better.
[X] Okay, this talking thing isn’t working. Why don’t we go interrogate said fairy instead?


I want to thank Tidalgrunt for that green effect on the portraits and the whole grey stuff on the number and lines cause I had no idea how to do that myself. Also here's a link to the raiden parts because the creator specifically wrote to credit them when using them: <a class= "clickable" href="https://www.deviantart.com/kamiyabloodvegeance/art/Raiden-Walfas-parts-580135221">https://www.deviantart.com/kamiyabloodvegeance/ar
t/Raiden-Walfas-parts-580135221</a>

Also, it's suprisingly hard for me to do this cause I basically have to redo the process every time I want to have the two change expressions. It may not be worth the effort but somehow custom images really fuel my will to write things.

That said, do you prefer having dialoque lines covered in this or just the default? It makes no difference to me but if it's easier for the readers on the eyes then I don't mind making that the default for when people talk.
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> [] I don’t care what you do to her, she’s just a faker anyway. The real one must be somewhere else.

I'm tempted to pick this option since I'm sure that Reimu knows what she's doing. But I feel like there's a disadvantage to picking it like the fact that whole anon thing has perma death ON as has been said before, which might affect Cirno too and thus she'd end up dead for realsies.
There's also the faker part, which may make Rumia genuinely deny that Cirno's the real deal as a form of escapism and that would not be a nice asset to put in her bucket of problems.
Finally, it's kind of a boring option, since you're just letting someone else decide things for you and that by itself may also be a source for dissatisfaction even if it is a petty feeling.

Even so I'd be tempted to pick this one since it's the option that makes the most stuff happen. Even if it has possibly the worst results.

> [] Definitely, she’d be let off to easy if you did that. She must pay. She will pay!

This sounds like the standard recruit choice, let me elaborate on that. Cirno has done a bad thing and Cirno funny enough actually knows things. So instead of disposing of her, she would be punished by being forced to clean up the mess that she's been participating in. With some luck that'd result in Cirno being set in our party (Whether the girl wants to or not) when Reimu and co has to go off to stage 5 (wherever that is) and we'd be stuck with the BORING job of cleaning this place up before going back to Eientei to handle a fire-problem which an Ice fairy would be very handy for.

Of course, that's me assuming a lot, there's also no indication that she'd even be a good companion, she most likely does resent us for just showing up and ruining her day so she may even not want to help us in any way.
We'd probably need to regain her respect by beating her in a straight fight for her to even aid us from now on.

Another possibility would be for Reimu to force us all into HER party, which I think could be funny too. I'd like to see how she takes the lead and unlike voices in our head, we'd be absolutely sure that she means well as our party-leader.

I can't really tell what would happen other than my musings here, but I think it's a good option too. If not my favorite one.

> [] It’s funny…she’s not getting it. Return the subject and try to explain everything better.

This one I think can go either way. Either Reimu will just interrupt us again because Rumia is not so surprisingly bad at talking about how she feels and is kind of assuming the worst in people right now. Which may be something she has no time to waste on, especially if the youkai is being rude about it. Or it could go a bit better if Rumia does try better this time and gives her a full update on what's been happening so far since I'm certain that the Hakurei is trying to understand since otherwise, she wouldn't have even asked about it in the first place.

Either way I'm not really for this one, since it feels like Rumia's avoiding the subject about Cirno and tries to talk about herself again which may look to an outside viewer as if she's angsting for no reason. It's a 50/50 thing. Best-case scenario Reimu says some inspiring words that will motivate Rumia thanks to the power of anime speech therapy. I'm calling it that way.

> [] Okay, this talking thing isn’t working. Why don’t we go interrogate said fairy instead?

This I'm 100% sure is Rumia avoiding the subject and trying to make Reimu's attention divert back to Cirno, so she no longer has to talk about it. It has the vibe off "If you want to know what she did, just ask her herself'" if you know what I mean since Reimu and Meiling only heard Cirno's last line before they appeared and so aren't aware of the messed-up things Cirno did. Learning that may make Reimu go into serious mode and so use her 100% to take care of this incident, which is basically a win-condition for us and means we only need to take care of our own survival now and find some cure before 6 am to get our own happy ending. Though this all could be happening anyway and by taking this option we simply choose to not choose any of the other three above.

My review of the options done, I'd choose [X] Definitely, she’d be let off to easy if you did that. She must pay. She will pay! as I want Cirno in my party and get the whole 9 gang together for what I assume will be the climax once the team is gathered, the cure is found and the last thing to do is go gang up on the culprit after Reimu has kicked her ass herself so that the final boss is weakened enough for a bunch of youkais to beat the pulp out of her. (Again, I'm just assuming the future here.)

Though all that rambling said, perhaps our job isn't to solve the incident as much as it is to lower the damage done as much as possible while undoing the things that ruin the status quo while the strong heroes play the actual game.

Hence why after enough time has passed, the incident is over. Because we're not a hero, we're just a background character doing their best to survive something that's above them. Though we can choose to get involved if we want to. Whether that results in us being happy afterwards or not is up to the air because finding out the truth and beating up the real culprit could bring real closure or may result in something even worse. Personally, I wouldn’t be able to move on if I didn’t know it.

Which is why Rumia feels insignificant because she is insignificant and the only reason the Hakurei is asking for her opinion right now is out of pity. Despite the bravado she’s still not mc material because she doesn’t know who she is anymore, why the incident is or what she’ll do after the adventure if she even survives it. Not only that but right now she can’t even tell if she will live to see the next sunrise.

That's my cup of tea on it, sorry for the ramble and recap but these choices feel like they actually mean something for once, so I got too excited. Either way I set my vote and I don’t care too much whether or not dialogue lines are marked in black or not. I’ll leave that choice for the other voters.

PS: We should totally remove that crown from Cirno's head too, just to see if it actually shuts down any sense of morality she may have. If so she might actually go into a sheer guilt-induced break-down as all of it comes back to her. She'd still have to clean up her mess though but in a way it'd make her way less evil looking than she is now. [X] Remove that crown.

Double PS: We should totally get a mini-clock or a watch too since we don't know what time it is right now. That way no matter where we are, we'll always know how much time we have left. Though where you could get one in Gesokyo I'm not so sure off.

Anyway those were my impressions and I'll be waiting for the next update.
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[X] Definitely, she’d be let off to easy if you did that. She must pay. She will pay!

Though you dislike the change of subject, you keep that feeling to yourself and think about the question. For around ten seconds before you move your head left and then right to convey the message of, “Hell no! If you kill her then she’d just come back to life anyway later. And that’s too lenient a punishment. She must pay!” you cross your arms to shape an X as well, making it clear beyond any doubt that this would definitely be a big problem that you cannot comply with.

“How convenient, I wasn’t planning to get rid of her anyway.” Reimu lets out a shrug and takes a glance behind her before continuing to speak, “Can’t really know anything if she can’t talk and all. That much is common sense, but I think that’s enough small talk so let me get straight to the point…” in an instant, she looks you at with the sharpest gaze you’ve ever witnessed, her eyes are filled with a resolve and nobility that’s as hard as a diamond. She’s being serious now, “I don’t like this place or anything that I’ve heard so far even a little bit. Especially the part about killing people, harming people, torturing people, honestly anything like that is hard to take lightly. And though you’re clearly on my side, I’ve got no time to waste on whatever you’ve gone through unless it’s relevant to our current situation or useful in any way. That doesn’t mean I don’t care about it; any other day and I’d let you have some tea back home but sadly…” she twitches in anger for a bit at the memory. “You know why that’s not possible; you were in the area after all and did absolutely nothing to help or even warn me about it.”

THAT IS A COMPLETE AND UTTER LIE, you DID warn her about the fairies unionizing and that this anon whatever was happening the moment you met her!

Naturally, you interrupt her to inform her of that mistake while doing your best to not look offended by how conveniently she doesn’t remember anything that good about you. NOT OFFENDED AT ALL.

She notices that your face is bulking up like how a frog would put air in their cheeks, it doesn’t seem to mean much to her but after a more intense pout something clicks inside her head, “…Oh, wait, wait…I guess you DID tell me about it huh? As much as it didn’t sound like it would make any sense. I was wrong in simply assuming that you are just a crazy person. Then again anyone would, seeing how you smashed your head against my floor. Don’t you know how to talk normally?” that last part sounds a bit like gas-lighting which you’re not for, so you continue your pout, alas it has lost its effect as she just looks at you deadpan before moving on, “But that little mistake aside, I’m going to be busy taking care of whatever smhuck handles this. Which I would love to do the moment I know where the next stage is, but I don’t. And for once I’m not going to go fly in some random direction because just getting here took my entire afternoon and who knows how many days somebody could pass in this place? I wouldn’t know the first thing about that…” at the end of that sentence, she pokes your forehead with one finger. “But I think YOU do know some stuff yourself in there, don’t you? You were here before I even got here and even had a little argument with your old friend. I think you can get where I’m going at, but I’ll say it anyway: Tell me everything you know about this place, or anything related to it. I won’t make fun of you or say you’re full of nonsense. You have my complete and utter attention now. So yeah, go ramble, go do a little dance, whatever floats your boat as long as you get that information out of your mouth in a way that I can understand!”

…Okay, that’s a lot to take in. But from what you understand she basically said ‘Okay, okay just give me info! I have better stuff to do and absolutely nothing to work with!’ which you honestly do not find endearing, cute or tough-looking. “I’ll tell you anything you want to know, just don’t let Cirno get out easy out of this, nor any of the other culprits. That’s my only condition, so promise it!” Before you answer her question, you demand she swears that she won’t break that condition, not because you don’t trust her but because she’s being a jerk about the way she’s asking things. But she has always been a jerk right? That’s kind of her charm, her whole appeal yet right now…you don’t feel like this is special. If anything, you’re getting the idea that she’s just looking down on you.

“You sure demand a lot…” despite that comment, Reimu doesn’t decide to just beat the information out of you, like any other situation would have asked for. “I’ll promise she won’t get scot-free nor will any other person that’s responsible for this incident or is trying to profit from it. Happy now?” the fact she does so is prove enough to you, that this is truly important to her and that you shouldn’t waste anymore time on prolonging all this, it’d be disrespectful to do so and make you a brat.

Though in a way she is not wrong if she feels that way about you.

Oh goody…once again the bad thoughts come back at the worst possible times. Even so you try to ignore them and open your mouth so you can tell the hakurei ever-

After all she only asked how you were doing not your whole li-…you’re not sure why you’ve trying to make sense of this or even justify it, because you can’t. She DID ask how you were feeling as if she wanted to know only to then dismiss them simply like they don’t’ mean anything. You know she’s known to be straightforward and rude but that right there was a whole nother level…Did you perhaps say the wrong thing? Or did you fail to mention something important? Maybe she simply can’t understand you because despite her awesomeness she’s still a human in the end? But you don’t know that’s the case either. Why is it so hard to understand other people anyway? It’s not like you’re going out of your way to self-isolate yourself so why is it that simply talking has been one of the hardest things you’ve had to do in this cruel adventure? Why is it that so many of your troubles could have been resolved by just telling the right individuals in the right way about it yet you either screw it up or only realize it’s an option when it’s thrown into your face? You hold your head in frustration as you think about why everything is like this.


…And why is it like this? Actually, no. Why are you thinking this now of all times?

Isn’t it obvious? It’s because you wanted to play the hero! That’s the problem here!

The hero? That’s not right, if anything you wanted to play the villain. But that kind of thing isn’t something you can bother to do right now. It was just a pretend play after all, and this is a real problem.

Yeah! BUT as far as you could tell, the adventure had started with you and…thus should also end the same way. Otherwise, you won’t be able to feel satisfied once this all eventually ends, am I wrong?

Hm, in complete honesty. That is the truth. IF you could get to the culprit then you would, but right now your kind of occupied with other things. Also how is that in any possible way a bad thing?

Any talk about how strength is the one thing that truly matters is simply an excuse for you to not ask for help from others because you were infatuated with the idea that no matter how bad things would get, that you’d eventually surpass them and yourself to save the day!

Uh, what? You didn’t even answer your own questi-

You were secretly addicted to your own drama (and still are) hence you bashed your head against some floorboards instead of calmly telling the Hakurei about the circumstances in better details way earlier today! It’s the reason you wanted to make your own incident as a symbol for a revenge-filled comeback instead of making sure that this current one wouldn’t get too far in respect of your friend. Have once again a look at how your own stupidity has backfired on you! Truly you are a lost cause!

…Why do you talk to yourself that way?

Hm? What do you mean? The truth simply bites but it’s something that’s essential!

…You know, you remember a time where your thoughts were actually helpful. You know the basic things like don’t put your hand in a fire or genuine self-critici-criti-si-cisim thing. But now…well you don’t know what it is that has made your thoughts turn into this direction. You don’t like it one bit.

Well moron, who cares about what you like? I’m you and you’re talking to yourself. If you don’t like me then you don’t like yourself and so the real problem lies within you all along. That’s the truth here.

Right, you are your own thoughts. There’s nobody else that can enter your head…except the numerous other voices you’ve been hearing so actually…are you really thinking to yourself? Is this mean, sad, and very sarcastic voice really a part of yourself? Shouldn’t you be helping you? Because you don’t feel like it is, all it’s accomplished so far is making you distracted, sad, and angry and at this point it feels like it’s just waiting for you to give up or go into a mental breakdown, is that normal? Or are you just trying to plan some third party for your own mistakes? What is the truth?

Hmm…. yeah, I can see why you’d think that. But again, the truth is that I’m here to fix your mistakes. You little dumb dumpling. Don’t you know what the alternative is? The alternative is that you’re too positive! And do you know what that gets you? It gets you nothing. You would stop working hard and you would get sloppy and stop trying to improve and everyone would think you’re dumb and that’s not even a lie. But do you know what the worst part is? You would fool if not force yourself into being happy. It’s far healthier to be sad and miserable instead of walking around all day thinking: Only positive thoughts now! Always be smiling! And do you know what that would be? It would be a constant reminder of how unhappy you really are. So don’t bother and just own it.

You...

You?

You!

What about you?

Not you, I…How long have I been thinking like this? I don’t remember always being that way. In fact, I don’t always think like this. I’m the best me when I don’t think like that at all. I’ve just been forcing myself to work hard despite the circumstances and then you pop up and I’m not doing things right anymore. Now it’s just torture, a constant ‘oh I could have done this better’ or an ‘Boohoo, if only I wasn’t this bad’ none of those thoughts are helpful or the truth in any way. You’re just making me-

I’m making you? Great, do you hear yourself? Cause that’s the sound of you arguing to yourself like a dumbass. I’m not making you do anything, every action you’ve taken was your own so don’t eve-

Okay, then maybe I am my own thoughts.

Exactly, you’re just a crazy person after all.

EXCEPT, I have a thousand thoughts every day and all those thoughts are not an extension of me, are they? I don’t identify myself by every thought I have, except when it comes to you, why is that?

Because that’s just who you are, you’re a person who’s lonely and sad and can’t carry out anything. And even when you achieve something it’s just anticlimactic or meaningless in a way.

…Yeah, that’s kind of me. I guess. At the very least I feel those emotions. And then my thoughts come, and it all feels very true…it feels very…real.

You are, you feel, same thing! What are you gonna do? Change your personality suddenly? Do you really think that just because you’re doubting yourself even more that it would explain anything?



See? Finally, some silence! Realize the fact you’re useless and make the best out of it!

I…I don’t think that’s true. I do feel useless but that doesn’t mean I actually am of no use…I think?

God, so you’re really going to try and analyze yourself again? Don’t you realize that the Hakurei has been watching you stare dead ahead of yourself while mumbling a bunch of nonsense? Get real and just give her the information she wanted, that’s all you’re good for anyway so let’s end it already.

That’s not true, I can be helpful if I want to be and I’m sure that if I’d ask really nicely that’d let me tag along even though I probably won’t. Since…since Marisa is going to need my help even more!

Pfuh, are you serious? Are you honestly thinking that you should just tell Reimu what you know, do some stuff here and then just go back to the hospital like this all never happened just for the sake of some dumb human that probably hates your guts and will kick your and everyone’s ass to get out?

Yes.

Nonsense, that’s not how a youkai should act at all. Just like that you show once again that you’r-

Whatever you’re about to say doesn’t sound helpful so I won’t even consider it.

Come on! You’re not even trying to improve anymore! You’re basically saying you’re okay with stagna-

I’m going to ignore that too. What is a better me is for me to decide, not you.

What are you going to do when eve-

Ignored!

You can’t just ign-

La, la, la, la, I can’t hear anything!

Y-

LA, LA, LA, LA, I CAN’T HEAR THE BAD THOUGTHS! LA, LA, LA, LAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!



Oh, it’s gone now. Was it really that easy?

Of course not, dumbass. You’re never going to let yourself go away. You know that right?

…Okay, fine. I think I finally understand this a bit more now.
Oh, you really do?

Yeah, I guess so. I guess bad thoughts will always come, but I’m done amusing them. I’m just going to concentrate on what really matters and give a lot less time to…I don’t know, whatever you are, I guess? I don’t want to talk myself in a way that I wouldn’t want to talk to anyone else anymore.

How delusional, you’re basically saying you want to be like everybody else and you’re just going to suffer for it. Don’t you want to be unique? Don’t you want to be special? If so, accept the real you!
If not then you’re going to be mindless, you’re going to change you know? You’re basically already a stranger to yourself. You’re going to become a stranger, and nobody will recognize you. You’re not even going to recognize yourself. Who do you think you’ll end up being?

I think a good goal would be the person I were way before I met any of you. And if that's worse then a better person than the person that I am right now.

What are you talking about?

I’m telling you to get out of my body. And don’t bother lying anymore because you’ve made it obvious who you really are with all those slip ups you’ve been having. Get out, you *****!



Oh, so you're the silent one now huh?

…How could you even tell?

I didn’t! But now I have every reason to take you out!

Fuck.
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__hakurei_reimu_touhou_drawn_by_leon_mikiri_hassha
>Be me, Hakurei Miko.
>Be not me, darkness youkai, dumb ice fairy and red head carry bag.
>Got into some very weird ‘fight’ just earlier that just consisted of the ice fairy cheating.
> Win anyway because the fairy gets fooled by someone, she thought was a friend.
> Kind of disappointing, but still a victory. Even if that didn’t happen, I could have just pressed the ‘I win’ button anytime I wanted. Still, less effort wasted the better. Fairy gets grappled by Meiling and bam it's checkmate.
>See an opportunity, intuition tells me I’m in no danger so now it’s info time.
>Talk to the Darkness Youkai, see she’s sad, try to make her mood just a bit better so after she vents, she’ll let out even more info. Not because I’m weak against sad children also ask if she’s okay.
>That was a bad idea, thing gets at once clingy and weak, starts playing the pronoun game and very obviously is expecting me to somehow cheer her up through some wisdom gizmo words stuff.
>Don’t like that, focus back on getting info out of her. Distract her by asking her about her friend’s fate just so she’ll focus on something that doesn’t involve her own pity party. It works instantly.
>She says her friend shouldn’t die but be punished instead. That makes sense to me, honestly expected her to say something overly edgy or dramatic but at least she’s taking this seriously.
> Easily convince her that whatever she knows she should let out if she wants to help out.
>Then the weird stuff happens.
> The darkness Rumia opens her mouth then stays still like a statue, staring me in the eyes the whole time.
>She grabs her head with both hands and starts mumbling some words loudly, almost sounds like it’s two people speaking at once. No idea what’s happening but stay quiet while seeing it all.
>Girl grows more agitated and is shaking back and forth now, her words clearer now make it obvious that she’s talking to herself. Taking turns to make a different face for every voice as if she’s in some theatre. Maybe she’s gone insane, but you doubt that’s the case. Even so you are on guard.
>Suddenly she stops talking to herself, her eyes regain some resolution as she draws out both of her sharp hands and puts them around herself before dropping to her knees as she seems to struggle really hard to do…something? You don’t know what she’s doing but don’t see a reason to stop it.
> Some egg drops straight out of her stomach, as if she had a hole in her belly the thing comes out slowly like how something would come out of swamp water if pulled hard. She grabs the thing with both hands and pulls it as hard as she can before it’s entirely removed from her. Swear I see something inside of her as she does this. Small dark fleshy tendrils extend from the egg’s bottom, having burrowed themselves into the girl’s stomach like worms to glue. Like some horrible parasite the sheer number of tendrils are disgusting, every corner of the girl’s body must have been filled by them. All the while the girl herself is laughing like a maniac as she removes them from herself one by one, bits by bits. Using her hands to finish the job herself, removing the thing all in its entirety. It all happened so quickly, less than three seconds at the most, as if this never happened yet something feels different in the air, it feels lighter as the girl gets up with a smile more honest and satisfied.
> “Ugh…that was terrible, but here Hakurei! This is one of the few eggs you’ll need to unlock the final boss and stuff! I think that is! But I’m sure that taking it could be useful to you!”
> All of this happened in less than a minute, somehow that felt like an eternity though.
>Even so, don’t feel scared at all or even remotely surprised, just overall disgusted and put off.
>That said, what do?

[X] Accept it. She, uh. Looks eager to give it to you.
[X] Nah, she can keep that foul thing. It’s screaming suspicion.
[X] Just destroy it, whatever it is, can’t possibly be good.


In case anyone asks, we're in dialogue time right now hence barely a minute at the most has passed. That said I think I could have done this better but for now you have this. Can't believe it's been 3 days though.
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Welp, no vote.

Time to roll the dice and update anyway!

Rolling 1d3 => 1
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ITEM GET
DA, DA, DUN, DUN!
Reimu has obtained a secret egg, get 3 more and something good may happen!

Is something you feel would be the appropriate response, add in some dramatic light and maybe some fanfare and you’d have the perfect moment to celebrate the fact that the Hakurei is now on the first step towards finding the extra boss! …If what Cirno said is even trustworthy!

Speaking of Cirno and Meiling for that matter. What are they doing anyway? You take a look behind the Hakurei, then a look behind yourself, then a look to the left and to the right and basically everywhere but you don’t’ see h-oh Meiling is fighting the Ice Fairy in a sword-fight! Except she’s just using her bare-hands and some of that chi-stuff. She looks like she’s winning too so you focus back towards the Hakurei as you’re certain that whatever they’re doing is totally harmless and safe and totally not something that will come back later the moment you’re done with this dialogue tree.

Nah, you’re certain that something climatic or dramatic won’t ever happen!

Noooooooooooooooooo, siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiir.



Huh, looks like you’re right. Nothing interesting happens on their part, so let’s focus back on the Hakurei!

Said Hakurei has accepted your gift gracefully, “…You’re pretty glad to give that to me, I’d say that’s suspicious but…” but by gracefully accepting you actually mean very carefully as she refused to make physical contact with it before covering it in barriers and even then, putting youkai-power sealing ribbons all over the thing. As if she had some reason to be reluctant towards what’s one of the cleanest and most innocent objects you’ve ever seen in your life. It’s just an egg after all and nothing else! You simply took it out of one of your many pockets and that's all that happened!

“Anyway, you mentioned a final boss, so…care to FINALLY explain everything already?” even so her affection-level does not rise in the slightest. Instead, she starts tapping her foot impatiently on the ground as it’s been quite some time for her to even get something remotely useful out of you. Not being a fan of wasting that time, it’s only natural for her patience to start draining eventually and though you’re certain that she won’t just beat the info out of yo…wait she could totally do that, doesn’t she?

Even more of a reason for you to just give her the info straight! You draw in a deep breath and get ready for the longest monologue slash recap in your entire life. “Yeah, I’ll tell you everything. It’s going to be a very loooooooooooooooooooooooooooong story though. You okay with that?” but you also make sure first that she is aware of that, it's only fair to do so.

“No, just tell me in 200 words or less. I want info, not a verbal dairy.” D’aw, that’s one COLD answer. But you’re sure that she’s just being busy and needs all the time she can get now so…

You’re going to tell her everything you know; in the shortest and best way you know!
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youkai of bel air
Now this is a story

All about how

My life got turned

Right upside d-
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Never mind the pun
“OW!” a sudden flitz of pain rises from your forehead. It’s like someone struck you with a rod!

“No puns, singing or even dancing, thank you very much.” And that’s because someone actually did! With a nimble hand and even nimbler reflexes, the Hakurei’s senses told her that you were about to indulge something foolish so naturally she gave you the best treatment of all: percussive maintenance.

“Again, take this seriously. I’ll look for info elsewhere if you keep acting like this.” She adds in her last warning and though it’s a calm warning with no threats behind it, you can tell that she genuinely means it this time. Your love for trouble and jokes has to be put aside just this once Rumia!

“H-how did you even know I was about to joke though?” even so you can’t help but ask that, amazed by how easily she read your movements before you could even think of doing them.

“I had a feeling…that it would be a joke that you shouldn’t even be able to make in the first place but that’s enough. Start talking about what matters or just stay out of my way!” Oh, oh no! The Hakurei has added in a last-minute clause. You don’t like that kind of pressure one tiny bit for we all know that the moment something becomes actual work then it becomes really hard to actually try to complete it. And that only makes everything such a chore!

Even so, you quickly gather every little digit of info in your meat machine and you…

[X] Tell her absolutely everything with absolutely no detail to spare.
[X] Just the most useful info, you’ve mostly been meandering after all.
[X] Rather than deciding what to tell, let’s decide what to OMIT (Write in, in case there’s a few things you don’t want to confess you’ve done for pragmatic reasons or others like that.)

Bam, update was a lot shorter since I’ll be updating every day now. That said this is still an important one. Good night for now y’all.
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[X] Just the most useful info, you’ve mostly been meandering after all.

Reimu doesn't need a complete play by play of our adventure.
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[X] Just the most useful info, you’ve mostly been meandering after all.

Girls are explaining important stuff. While also making sure that nothing irrelevant is added to it. But in short the explanation goes like this:

-Some items have been spread around Gensokyo by some group called Anonymous. Those items are Anon Objects and are up to no good!

-The culprit is unknown, though confirmed allies are Cirno, potential ones are Shion and that Catgirl, most of the tanukis seem to be confirmed too and other than that you've got no real idea on who's really helping them or why they do so.

- As far as the Bun-Bummaru said, a bunch of outsiders came by coincidence too! Most of them are in the forest or human vilagge or uh...you don't recall the article that well but it could be important! Go read one if you ever find it.

-Oh and that one Doctor Eirin at like the Bamboo Clinic described how like the thing works, which was confirmed by Cirno later which may or may not absolutely confirm that those who are affected have a limited time before they wel...die.

-Oh yeah, those tanukis tried to like steal one of the same eggs you've just given to her from Merlin. Where she even got it you're not sure but all you know is that she has one and that the other two are nearby the Scarlet Mansion (By the lake) and one is in the forest! Find them all and maybe you can kick the ass out of the culprit. Cause nobody knows where they are.

In short you explain a lot of stuff and omit absolutely nothing. Even on how those tanuki tried to kidnap you once (or did they?) and how you cut some of them apart with the chainsaw you have instead of respecting the spell-card rules...though they broke it first so the Hakurei should understand right? Riiiiiight? it's not like they actually died so your murder score is close to 0! It's like a two still, you think. Also you're totally going to head back to the SDM later to commit a necromantic ritual to revive both Wriggle and Alice even if it's that in a way a massive middle-finger to the After-life department but who ca...

Actually you know what? Let's NOT mention the last two things to her. That said you still tell her the most relevant stuff you can think off while she's patiently waiting. It's not easy, nor fun, but sometimes a job has to be done.

Though...maybe you should tell her about those things? It's kind of a classic thing to omit stuff only for people to find out about it anyway later on just so they can get an ever worser impression of the events. If that actually happens then maybe it's best to get the cat out of the bag here and now so she later knows that whatever happens, you're on her side!

Or she may decide to just kick your ass for the past transgressions...also you don't know her stance on the Necromantic.

That's said, that's yet another decision to make! Oh boy, do you loathe those!

[X] Tell her everything important, EVEN the stuff that may paint you in a negative light if they are relevant.
[X] Nah, only tell her the important stuff and make yourself look good too in that summmary!

And because it's 11 pm here, I'm going to just update this here and send the rest tommorow to not break my every day streak this soon! Good night voters!
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[X] Tell her everything important, EVEN the stuff that may paint you in a negative light if they are relevant.

I think Alice might be Reimu's friend. She'd probably like to know that her friend can be revived.
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[X] Tell her everything important, EVEN the stuff that may paint you in a negative light if they are relevant.

You do! Confident that there is nothing to be THAT ashamed off, you tell the Hakurei about every little gritty bitty and also quite dirty details you may have been tempted to omit before.

Like how your kind of filled with murderous urges that you’ve somehow managed to not indulge so far (then again, most people who have anon-objects become super aggressive right?), or how you are totally going to participate in an unholy ritual to bring Wriggle and Alice back once you manage to get back at the Scarlet Mansion.

Or even how you may or may not have burned someone’s face severely because they got in your way and that In hindsight going to a hospital while you’re being actively tracked down by semi-mobsters could totally backfire.

Though it hasn’t as far as you know right now…and what else?

Oh yeah, Marisa has gone cuckoo or is close to going cuckoo and will probably BEAT THE HECK out of every person in Eientei to escape her room while aiding others to get out of well. Sadly, that’s not a good thing because the other patients are probably even WORSE. Oh, and Cirno has been freezing people alive to give them like a fate worse than death and that’s’ why Youkai Mountain is completely snowy, because she shot a super BIG laser at it. The same laser she was about to shoot you two with if it wasn’t for you backstabbing her dumb, trusting, little heart so both her and Meiling totally owe their lives to you now. Not that you're going to make them do anything for now.

Of course, that’s STILL not everything but even so the Hakurei calmly listens to your every word, only giving the occasional hum, uhuh, mhm and other kind of noises. Her face is kind of covered in shades now though and you can’t see her eyes either, which is kind of cool. Her hands are clenched so tightly that her nails are harming her palms, you know that cause you can see and smell tiny droplets of blood and it’s kind of amazing that she’s so invested in your story that she doesn’t even notice that.

This pleases you; you’ve got a feeling that you did just the right thing!

Was that everything?” She asks you when you stop talking while pondering her vibes. Her voice is no longer gentle or even indifferent, nope! It’s rough, gravely and like…subdued thunder?

Whatever her voice is, your own stays cheery or at least you make it sound cheery. Still a bit unnerved by all that voice in head stuff but no less determined to forget about that as quickly as possible. “Yep! Somebody’s not respecting your rules, harming everyone, and hiding in some hidey hole like a coowwwaaaard. What are you gonna do?” you’re also genuinely curouis on how she will react to all this bad news, because guess what? You can totally tell that she’s pissed!

And that’s a good thing, for her anger does not feel like it is directed at you. And bad feelings from humans feel good to youkai. Ah, yes, there's an aroma behind that anger of hers. It's like..something you can only perceive, not explain.

“Good, good, then I know just WHAT to do.” Reimu doesn’t do anything after saying that, to your confusion and disappointment. She’s not flying away in a rage or turning around to swiftly beat the crap out of Cirno either. Nor does she elaborate on what she’s talking about. “But first….”

She takes a step towards you, well more than one and totally violates your personal space. But you're okay with that.

Let’s take care of you first!” That last sentence however is the one to put alarms in your head.
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Did you understand all of that?” Reimu asks you, her voice and whole aura still filled to the brim with killing intent. Despite that, you nod as best as you can while hiding your newly gained discomfort.

If you did, then repeat everything I just said.” But she doesn’t believe you, or maybe she does and just wants to make sure that you’re not going to mess up her instructions, even so…she’s still scary.

But…scary is kind of nice, isn’t it? You don’t love it. But seeing an angered Reimu that doesn’t smite you the moment she sees you is kind of a rare occasion, if not an honour.

honour aside, you gather your guts and try to answer, confident that you’ve understood everything! “Y-you want me to make sure that nothing bad happens at Eiente- “

Wrong. Focus and get it right this time, I’m in no mood to repeat myself.” The way she suddenly grabs your sleeve, only to pause and then let gently go quickly changes your mind though. Because as earnest as the Hakurei is…the moment she’s in this state, ass will be kicked and it’s only because she’s controlling herself that you and everybody present aren’t moaning on the ground right now.

Swallowing some spit in your throat, you recall what she said as best as you can and try again. “You...want me to show you the 'shortcut' I used to get here after you’re done snooping around here. So that you...won't have to bother wasting time by having to go aaal the way back down the mountain. But…”

You don’t know how you even got here. Which sounds like a massive case of nonsense. Which is exactly why it’s believable, so what’s the idea that came after that? What were my orders?

“I’m to…” you take out a normal ribbon with a bunch of text written on it. “Deliver this message to Marisa without reading it myself. And if I do read it then you won’t be happy about it?” you’re not sure what’s the point of doing that to be honest, or if it would even calm Marisa down at all...even so now you’ve got yet another goal to accomplish if you ever get back to Eientei or out of here.

And what’s the second task? And the third one?” again, she tests your short-term memory.

Which is fine because this time you reply with a quarter of your confidence. “Help the Doctor to the best of my ability if some infected people are actually about to escape their own cells…even if that could already be happening this instant, cause who’s to say that just because someone said that time is slower here that the time its slowed down by is actually a lot instead of say ‘1 second here is equal to 5 seconds back’ and bla, bla, bla. Lots of complicated words, lots of pointless implied threats, lots of menacing glares but all in all you’re just telling me to basically be a good girl while you solve the incident and that if I were to ever murder someone for the realsies, you’ll do something terrible.”

Reimu raises an eyebrow at the last sentence.

“Oh, don’t lie. If looks could kill, then you’d have burned down an orphanage by now!” you don't back off.

She lowers the eyebrow and lets out a sigh, her temperament lowers by a tiny inch and her voice becomes normal again. “Full disclosure: The moment I find the person responsible for all this, I’m going to have strong words with them and many oh so many bullets. I may have to beat up everyone I meet just for safety’s sake.” She’s not kidding, the look on her face shows she’s genuinely pondering whether she should cave in every single person she meets with a barrage of bullets just to be sure that nobody gets in the way or messes things up. You’d kind of pity that kind of responsibility if it wasn’t the fact that you don’t want to die the moment, she notices the look on your face. “Until then…you better take care of yourself and those around you. Because if you give me any more work to deal with, then I won’t be overlooking them like I will the…’things’ that you need to take care off. Is that understood, grue?”

You put ‘Reimu’s ribbon-letter that's for Marisa and nobody else and if you read it then she'll probably murder you or worse’ in your inventory and give the girl a thumbs up. No more words, just a single gesture to show that you’re fully ready to do whatever is needed to make this incident end.

“Then one final thing…” Oh, great. She ruins a potential nice moment by asking yet another thing. “Is it appropriate to cut people apart with a chainsaw that’s slowly killing you?”

…Is she for real? After all this long string of talking and talking, she asks you the easiest question to answer in like ever. “It is NOT appropriate to use a chainsaw that’s slowly killing you.”

“Mhm, and when is it appropriate?”

Oh, that’s another question entirely. “…When someone disobeys the spell-card rules and you…”

Wrong.” Reimu takes out her rod again, ready to smack sense into you again.

Which only makes you more nervous because you don’t know the right answer, “When you…really need i- “

Wrong.” Now she’s raising it in the air. Ready to swing it hard against your skull at any second.

You think HARD about it this time, “… … … never?” and hope that’s the right conclusion.

“Correct, It is never appropriate to try to kill people with a chainsaw, you crazy bastard.

“What if a bunch of suspicious voices say the same thing yet using the chainsaw feels so good and satisfying and makes you feel oh so warm inside and super cool and strong too?”

You feel like you should have just agreed to her words. Because her reaction is as far away as possible from subtle, with the whole twitching eye thing and the fact that she hit you again.

I don’t know what I expected.” Reimu lets out another groan as she sheathes her rod, her anger still present but no longer frontpage news. “Then again what does anyone see in you? You’re uneducated, smelly, rude, deformed, dying and your insides are hideous, and you have no friends, at least I’m not yours. And you should have been dead a long time ago if everything you told is true.” And out of nowhere she says a bunch of negative things about you with a straight face.

Those are fighting words, words that despite your will to live. You cannot possible ignore.

So you take a deep breath and commit one of the most dangerous actions you could do in your current life.
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“And you’re a mean bitch, but you don’t hear me complaining. If anything, that’s the only cute thing about you, isn’t it? Well, it’s only cute for youkais which may explain why you don’t have a lot of human friends but who am I to assume things like that? I’m just a dumb ol Grue~” Like a soldier engaging in a suicide mission, you return the barbs that she’s thrown at you. You know that most signs of friendliness in good old Gensokyo are shown by beating the crap out of someone or just outright roasting them like this. But that doesn’t mean that either options are exclusives.

“Hm.” Surprisingly, she’s not doing the former to you right now. It’d still be worth it if she did, but it’s clear to you that she’s reserving all the anger and future violence towards other targets, if it wasn't physically impossible then you'd swear you saw the Hakurei gain a small smile for just a second, “I’ll overlook the things you just said and the things you’ve done and the things you’re about to do for now. Even so don’t believe for a second that I’ll come save your butt if you manage to piss off people that aren’t related to the incident. And if you break the spell card rules again then you know what’s going to happen…so do try to bring Alice back and make sure Marisa is all right before croaking it okay? You can live or die afterwards.”

“Okay!” you can agree to those terms, but one thing doesn't make sense to you. “Why don’t you go do those things yourselves though?” why is she trying to make you deliver a letter instead of showing up in person?

“I don’t have time to waste on side-quests, as you’ve said if people are about to die then I can’t waste a single second. The sooner I’m done cleaning this place full of clues and heading to the next destination, the sooner the incident is over and well, hurray Gensokyo is back to normal, duh. In the meantime, you go find whatever shortcut to ‘here’ you used and go handle things at Eientei and the stuff I told you to do. Did you think you could go tag along with me perhaps? Cause that’s a no.” She answers the question as if you asked something stupid, then as if on sheer timing she points with one finger at the background during the exact moment Meiling finishes the job against Cirno, that’s the closest thing you can call that. Seeing how Cirno gets smacked to the ground by a giant chi-blast the moment Meiling gets past her defences and honestly you can tell how it’s about to end already.

Even Reimu doesn’t pay attention to it, continuing your oh so important dialog instead. “Oh, but don’t worry too much. You can have Meiling back now, I no longer need a mountain mule and I’m more a solo kind of person anyway. Am I not the kindest person you’ve ever met in your life?” you're pretty sure that's meant to be sarcasm, even so you don't laugh and answer back as carefully as you can in the low chance that it isn't. She hasn't kicked your butt yet but she totally could...

But anyway, what's the last thing you'll mention before this dialogue tree finally ends?

[] Uh, you sure are? Meiling’s not an object but yay back to my party she goes! Also, wouldn’t it be a bit ironic if Cirno was forced to join me to clean up the mess she caused? Let’s remove a crown.

[] I don’t know…if you cared about Marisa, you’d make time for Eientei. Just saying that not everybody is as competent as you…and do you genuinely trust me to not make things worse?

[] Write-in.

This is the last talky choice before the plot moves again. Whether you try to make her give you more than intended or outright try to convince her to come to Eientei anyway or say something else is up to you. Afterwards stuff will happen.
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[x] Uh, you sure are? Meiling’s not an object but yay back to my party she goes! Also, wouldn’t it be a bit ironic if Cirno was forced to join me to clean up the mess she caused? Let’s remove a crown.

Cirno caused this mess, now she gets to clean it up.
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shouty shout
[x] Uh, you sure are? Meiling’s not an object but yay back to my party she goes! Also, wouldn’t it be a bit ironic if Cirno was forced to join me to clean up the mess she caused? Let’s remove a crown.

“That was meant to be a joke, don’t suck up to people. It makes you look pathetic.” Yet again Reimu talks to you like you’ve made a mistake. But she stops her dialog for a second before she continues, as if a new thought came to her “Anyway, Meiling’s yours now. But what was that about a crown you said?” she asks you with the most uninterested tone a person could possibly utter to another. But at this point you can tell she's not really disinterested, she just talks that way.

Still, that's a strange reaction for sure, because you told her everything no less than a few seconds ago. D-does she just not pay attention to the things you’re talking about? “Cirno’s wearing some crown that gives her the ability ‘to concentrate’ or something. I don’t think it actually does that, but the side effects are ‘allegedly’ that she’s unable to feel guilty or doubt herself in any way because those kinds of emotions are of the ‘distracting kind’. Something like that, yeah.”

“So…what you’re saying is that she’s been brainwashed? Sounds awfully convenient to me…” Reimu doesn’t seem to buy the concept of it. “And you only know this because she told you about it right? Then the truth is obvious: She’s just using that thing as her way out the moment she loses. Cause it’d be the only way to get away with her actions…by saying someone else is truly responsible for them.”

Honestly, you had the same thought. But. “Nah, that can’t be possible.” You’re sure that isn’t it.

“How are you so sure of that?” Reimu’s tone isn’t dismissive this time, just a tad curious.

“She’s not that smart.” You say as the first clue, “And also…I kind of tried to make her fake that kind of thing before you’d come to kick her butt, but she refused and said she would see everything to the end. She’s so confident in her win that even the thought of having a plan B wouldn’t be like her.” And you add in your second and third clue as naturally as you can, believing in them…within reason.

“Okay, I still don’t trust it though.” Regardless the Hakurei keeps her suspicions, “But if you want to prove her innocence that BADLY, then sure. You can keep her after IF removing that crown does make her stop her nonsense. (And once she gets every little sprinkle of info that the fairy may have on her) Though I must warn you: I will hold you responsible for every action she takes while at your side, understood?

“…I’ll do my best.” You really don’t like that clause, all the more reason to be careful though.

“Then this talk is now over, let’s go gang up on a certain Ice Fairy now if Meiling isn’t done kicking her butt that is.” Reimu ends any possible future in this conversation and offers you to fight alongside them, though the fact of outnumbering a person sounds like a dirty strategy…that’s exactly what it makes more tempting. Because playing dirty is such a youkai move to do.

Though…that doesn’t mean you want to do it, as much as you hate it. You don’t think you have it in you to harm her, it doesn’t make any sense at all, but you just can’t do it. It’s just not possible...but isn't that kind of selfish in a way?

A scream of pain interrupts you right before you can say that to the Hakurei.
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bla bla round 2
A tad surprised, both you and the Hakurei turn around to the source of the commotion. Turns out the person who screamed was Meiling herself, she’s covering one of her eyes with a firm hand and holding the rest of her body in a combat pose as she’s now facing against two foes at once.

One of the foes is naturally Cirno, she’s wielding an ice sword twice her own size in one hand, some spell-card in the other and her regal rod is neatly sheathed on her side. Of course, there’s still a crown on her head, but her appearance isn’t what matters here. It’s her condition: Most of her body seems a tad bruised, and veins are popping out of her head in anger. But other than that, she does not look tired in the slightest. “Heh, an inch more to the left and you’d have got her entire eye!” her voice is filled with pride and a hint of smugness as she’s trying to show of her new companion. “You thought I was letting you kick my ass on purpose didn’t you Meiling? AS IF! I was just, uh…focusing and learning your moves!” that sounds like a lie. More likely she completely underestimated her.

“P-pretty sure I was kicking your ass. I didn’t even use any bigger moves than a one, two, three combo and here it makes you fall like a ragdoll. A shame your raw strength can’t beat technique!” Even Meiling says it, still holding onto her eye, her hand shines a little bit of green on it before she lets go of it. Revealing a fresh small scar adorning it. “And that was a cheap move, anyway. Do you really think summoning something out of nowhere will defeat me? This wound will be gone in an instant!” that’s not a boast, you can already see some her skin slowly restore itself. Long live youkai regen!

“Technique, smecknique!” Cirno doesn’t seem to care. “Don’t act like fighting me isn’t slowly tiring you out. Every punch you throw, every kick you connect, every little flashy move you make is useless if I can just stand up and act like it was nothing at all! You’re simply beneath me and so I gift you an opponent that’s more on your level…behold my most powerful servant: The Blackwing!” with a dramatic hand-gesture she shows off the new foe to enter the field: It looks just like its name.

But nobody is every satisfied with such a lacklustre description, are they? Ahem, the thing has a weird scythe-like horn up above, black wings that look like that of demonic bat and everything else about their form is obscured by a field of…very painful to look at visuals?

You’re not sure why that’s the case but the moment you look at it, a headache grows within you until you stop it. How odd, even so it doesn’t move an inch. Just standing still in place like a toy that has to be turned on.

There, that’s much better isn’t it. “It looks like garbage.” Reimu isn’t impressed by any of this though and is holding her rod again, ready to kick butt and chew gum and sadly there’s no gum around here. “That said, what are you waiting for Gatekeeper? You’re fighting a fairy of all things, so hurry up and bust a move or something so we can move along and be done with this. It’s not that hard!”

“I’m TRYING here!” Meiling doesn’t like her tone but doesn’t turn to face her. Still focused on her opponents. “It’s not like I’m the person that’s talking and talking and say…NOT helping me out here. Not that I need it, but if you want this to end sooner then hurry up and make yourself useful.” And tells the Hakurei that if she wants this to end, then move your fat ass already. Her words, not yours.

“All right.” The Hakurei agrees to that, already wanting to fight anyway. And so, there are now two strong opponents that Cirno has to worry about. “I’ve been itching for a fight anyway…”

“You two done? If so it’s time for you all to be humbled.” Cirno doesn’t care about the odds though and still looks completely confident that she’s going to win. Attitude aside, she takes a moment to kick the Blackwing’s back and then shouts at it. “Wake up sleepyhead, I’ve got enemies for you!”

For a moment, the creature stirs. If just to show that it is indeed alive. But nothing else follows, though thanks to your position, you can tell that the egg the Hakurei is holding now has a red eye on the side of it. Though it’s not like the egg can do anything since it’s sealed by a bunch of stuff.

“Hey…I told you to start moving! W-what are you waiting for! Are you broken?” Cirno doesn’t seem to understand what’s happening though and most likely expected a bigger reaction. “Hey come on! Don’t tell me you’re going to do nothing when you’re filled to the brim with the energies of others! It’s not like I need your help but fighting all my foes at the same time won’t be easy either, SO GET UP!” it doesn’t, no matter how hard she protests, did its batteries die or something? You’re sure that it has attacked Meiling before yet here it lies still like…for no reason that you can make sense off.

Whatever sense it had doesn’t matter to the Hakurei. “Looks like your toy broke.” and she takes a step closer to Meiling while taking out a handful of needles. “Which means you’re all on your own.”

Meiling doesn’t care either and lets out a shrug, “I punched it like once, if that’s all it took to take it down then maybe it wasn’t as strong as she expected it to be?” and she takes out a spell-card, ready to attack Cirno alongside Reimu with a coordinated barrage of curtain fire bullets.

It’s pretty obvouis that Cirno’s about to lose now. Even so, the girl still stands her ground. “I’m warning you girls…” she drops her card and holds her sword with both of her hands. “I’ve yet to use my full power and honestly, I don’t want to, cause If I have to…you will all die so don’t you test me!” what a silly thing to say, even more when your voice sounds a bit panicked.

“Oh, I’m so scared.” Reimu snarks back, then gives Meiling a glance. “Okay, we’re going to blast her on three.” She totally does not believe anything the fairy has to say and honestly why would she?

“A useless threat, then again who would fear a girl that relies on silly gimmicks before trying to fight for real? To use so many distractions mean you’re avoiding a real fight on purpose!” neither does Meiling. “Okay, I’ll count then. 1, 2…” and both get ready to kick her ass.

“Hey! I’m not joking! Don’t make me do this!” Cirno gives them all a last warning.

“3!” to no avail as both of them immediately engage. A fight’s about to brew for one last time!

Reimu throws a bunch of needles towards Cirno, forcing her to create a wall of ice to block them. Only for Meiling to do a jumping kick and smash through it, hitting the fairy in the face and knocking her away a solid few meters. Reimu and co managed to get the first strike and swiftly fly towards the fairy to continue the imminent and unavoidable beatdown. Hoping to get her before she stands up.
Too bad Cirno knows how to simply float up to easily recover from her prone form. There’s an angry expression on her face alongside the shape of a boot on it. She raises one hand and speaks with a tone that’s devoid of all humour. “Fine, I warned you all! Now have a taste of this!” and she…shines with a blue light for a second and after that tiny moment, all hell goes loose.

Clouds of misty ice that slow down those exposed to it, ice arrows that dive on you faster than an eagle could to pierce your heart, an entire collection of weapons of ice that engulf the sky like diamonds while reflecting of any light that reach it, naturally deflecting lasers and homing in on those who are too slow to dodge them. Those are but one the few insane attacks that she has shot towards them in less than a second. It feels almost no different from the usual danmaku if it wasn’t for the intensity behind them and all-but confirmed lethality on being hit by those yourself. She's genuinely fighting back now.

Even so, it does not put her two foes on the defensive, it only makes them more aggressive!

The Hakurei simply flies left and right while not a single bullet hits her, it’s as if she can already see the trajectory they’re about to take or no less outrageous the bullets are simply dodging her instead.

Mid-flight her hakurei orbs show themselves by her side and as if on autopilot they shoot out even more needles than she can herself by hand. Allowing her to simply focus on avoiding the shots and making sure that no matter how hard Cirno tries to get close to her, she won’t be forced into melee.

Meiling doesn’t pursue Cirno for some reason nor does she bother trying to dodge any bullets thrown her way, instead she simply engages in quick dashes towards Cirno’s general direction before unleashing a kick that shoots out a focused barrage of bullets so hard that they shatter any ice bullets and weapons on that come her way. You didn’t know that was even possible, but you guess that it’s normally an illegal move. Hence, she’s only using it now of all times. Though why is she…

A flurry of icicles, each the size of a small house come your way. But before you can even think about defending yourself, Meiling already flies by, creates a burst of bullets that resemble a lotus. Gathers some energy and kicks them all away with a hurricane kick with a rainbow petal flying about.

Then she leaves just like that again, back to the fighting field but still close enough to interfere if any sort of stray bullets were to meet you by accident. That on its own is enough to make you realize…

That everybody is excluding you from this fight. Cirno doesn’t aim her bullets at you on purpose and is simply doing her best to take down the Hakurei who’s dodging them all like they mean nothing and engaging right back at the Fairy. Meiling is fighting too but she seems to be a bit too conscious of your presence here, hence she came to your aid just a second ago. As if you can’t defend yourself.

That’s pretty thoughtful of her, but in a way, it feels super condescending from everyone. You know you could be more useful in this and that you don’t have to just stand there twiddling your thumbs next to some dumb egg and some probably dead creature. But would involving yourself not end with up you being a burden?

[X] Fight as well, you can totally help!
[X] Don’t, you’d only slow down the others.

I've added a to be continued screen as a joke during editing but then I wasn't able to remove it. So please don't pay attention to that.
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[x] I'll help by keeping an eye on this weird thing Cirno summoned, just in case it tries to do something sneaky.

I don't trust that thing one bit.
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fine have a blackwing
> I'll help by keeping an eye on this weird thing Cirno summoned, just in case it tries to do something sneaky.
Hm, is that really the best thing you can do right now?

Nah, there’s no point in doubting in yourself. While the other two are busy taking care of miss Ice Fairy, you’re going to make sure that nothing shady happens in the meantime.

Especially not from…

Something as suspicious as the thing in front of you! Blackwing was it right? With that kind of name and that kind of size. (It’s just as tall as Meiling for god’s sake!) there’s no way It’s useless! it has to have more to it!

Still, it’s not moving at all. Not a sound or a shriek can be heard from it, and it smells rather sweet for something that looks so big and ugly. Maybe one punch really was all it took to break the thing?

Oh well, you better figure something out. Cause otherwise you’re just wasting a second or ten just staring at a broken object while there’s a much cooler fight going on. And that’d be very embarrassing, like it’d be the kind of story that would make even a fairy ask you if you are dumb. Or maybe this is the exact right thing to do?

You're not sure you'd be even perceptive to notice a difference. But that little recurring naggin case known as doubt aside.

You do perceive that there IS a thing that is moving yet is NOT the Blackwing. It’s the egg, having gained an eye out of nowhere, it is now vibrating slightly, as if it’s reacting to something close to it yet is unable to do more due to the seals enveloping it. It’s an odd thing to behold for cer-

Hey, was that you or did that Black Wing just get a tiny bit closer to you? You could be wrong, maybe you’re so bored that you’ve started to imagine things. Cause honestly you just described everything.

There’s an egg behind you, a black wing in front of you, there’s a battle happening in the air above you and the massive canon that’s loaded and ready to fire remains unguarded by anybody present.

So, what now Grue? What’s going to be your next amazing action?

FIGHT: [ ]Kick it, punch it, shoot it, whatever you prefer.

ACT: [ ]Ruminate ; [ ]Rumitalk ; [ ]Rumitouch ; [ ]Rumilick

ITEM: [ ]I’m not listing your whole inventory, so if you wanna use something I hope you remembered it.

MERCY: [ ]Spare ; [ ]Rumithisissillyandyou’rebetteroffdoingsomethingelse
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[x] Hey, remember how you were going to help Reimu and Meiling by blinding Cirno with darkness before Reimu dropped an orb on you? Reimu isn't dropping any orbs on you anymore, so help them out by using your darkness to blind Cirno again.

We might only get in the way by fighting Cirno directly, but we can still help them out from a distance. Plus we can still keep an eye on this blackwing thing this way.

Blackwing seems to be trying to get at the egg, so we should probably prevent it from doing that.
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scene 1
[x] Hey, remember how you were going to help Reimu and Meiling by blinding Cirno with darkness before Reimu dropped an orb on you? Reimu isn't dropping any orbs on you anymore, so help them out by using your darkness to blind Cirno again.



Pfeheheehehe!

Do you really need to ask yourself if you remember that?

You’re the youkai of darkness you know, so anything that’s darkness related is naturally your specialty.

Blinding someone like Cirno by using a technique you’ve barely succeeded to do once is…super easy you know? A total piece of cake even!

No torch can shine in your darkness and your range is superb so no matter how far one runs, the darkness will follow!

So sure, you can definitely do that and hinder Cirno’s butt so hard, fighting her would be like fighting a baby to the others.

A baby that’s blind and disoriented and unable to dodge the bullets of her opponents…
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scene 2
And that’s fine with you! It’s been a while since you’ve used darkness anyway!

You’re so excited at the prospect that a ball of darkness naturally envelops you, staying light enough to be seen through as you’re still fully aware of how shady the Blackwing is even if it hasn’t moved yet.

Even so, the doubt of not knowing whether it has moved doesn’t matter at all right now. Because you’re finally, FINALLY using the amazing power of darkness again! The power to take away the light, the power to bring glory to the night, yet again it is time for the shadows to make their dastardly move by taking the gift of sight from your foolish enemies. Watch them squirm in confusion as their bullets oh so once precise now scatter everywhere sloppily and their evasion and thus ability to dodge bullets becomes second to absolute zero.

LONG LIVE DA-no, no, no! YOU CAN BOAST LATER, NOT FALLING FOR THAT AGAIN!

Ahem, you’re getting a bit too excited there. But still, after hours of only flying around, shooting twin lasers, weird ink and using a chainsaw.

The prospect of finally using your true ability again is a joyful one. One so joyful that just at the thought, you feel a warm sensation inside of you.

The type of feeling that makes you just as refreshed as taking a cool bath after a hot summer day.

And that’s natural, isn’t it?

Spreading darkness is like your thing, even if you haven’t done much with your life at all, the fact that you can still spread fear simply by having such a noble power is a true privilege.

And using that privilege is something you’ll never get bored off. Using darkness is the best forever.

Enough about you, let’s get to work right now!

DAAAAAAAAAAARKNEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSS!
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struggle 1
Darkness come to me! Annihilate the light! Let there be Evil! Behold the Deadly Shadows!

Fear the grasp of that which lies between worlds! Witness true power and despair! Hope begone!


Motivating yourself with such noble words, the darkness twitches again and you concentrate all of your will towards establishing your target as Cirno. It’s not an easy thing to do because not only is she super far away from you, she’s also moving rapidly back and forth amongst a battlefield filled to the brim with magical bullets shot from both her and her foes that are just as plentiful as they are brightly coloured.

In other words: It’s hard to see her right now, like SUPER HARD to see her even.

And though normally you don’t need to see a target to cover someone in darkness, that’s mostly because you already know where the target is or because you simply make your darkness so wide that even if you don’t know where they are, they are guaranteed to be caught up in it. But now, you’re trying to cover your target in a darkness that’s just their size in order to avoid friendly fire.

Which is another thing entirely. Stuff’s easy to do when you don’t care who’s hit. Stuff’s a bit harder when you don’t want to hit anyone nearby, but ONLY hitting someone you can barely see? Insane!

Of course, that doesn’t mean you’re going to give up! You just need to come up with a solution that doesn’t involve you getting too close so you won’t disturb their combat or getting too far away so you can’t keep an eye on the oh so suspicious Black Wing Thingy.

But how are you going to do that?

Hmm…
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struggle 2
Fwooh! Okay doing that was harder than you thought it would be. But even so it worked. And why wouldn’t it? If you can make the darkness appear around and outside of you. Then why would you not be able to create a big ball of darkness inside you and then manually move it around outside of you?

Doing things this way takes away the time and concentration needed to make the darkness appear elsewhere while also giving the best of both worlds! That way you won't be a sitting duck either.

You’re impressed by your own ingenuity, even so now’s not the time to boast. So, you concentrate on the next step of your super smart plan: Now you have to fill the darkness ball with ink, that way if it hits Cirno then not only will it blind her, but it’d also burn her to complete ash-….oh.

Yeah, no. Forget that part of the plan. For some reason the mere thought of it makes some of your stomach acid rise to your throat and your hair stand on edge. Also, you want her alive after this.

And being alive is quite challenging once you’re on fire. She wouldn’t like the temperature.

So, uh, hold on just another second. You’re sure you’ll find a great idea that works this all out!

Also is it you or is saying things like Darkness come to me! not oddly satisfying? You guess it's a bit geekish to do that kind of thing now...but it's fun so who honestly cares? Nobody but you, that's who!

But that's enough, it's time to think some more.

It's on the tip of your tongue you swear...
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Target found
This is it, the final plan. While the gals are fighting the Ice Fairy, you’re going to shoot the ball of darkness towards Cirno at just the right time. It’s not like she can dodge it anyway as she’s busy dodging the assault of the Hakurei with everything she got while attacking two people at the same time and that kind of time will definitely not make her expect an attack from someone like you!

Besides, even if she does notice then by the time she does. She’ll already be enveloped by it. And once that thing hits her, absolutely nothing in the world could possibly remove it. Leaving the other girls free to beat the idiot out of her, remove the crown while she’s too tired to fight anymore and finally she’ll see the errors off her way and clean up the mess that she caused to apologize.

All that will happen if you don’t miss.

Just take a breath, focus your aim some more and DO. NOT. MISS.

This is your all or nothing, the circumstances are perfect, nothing could go possibly wrong.

Just believe in yourself and uh, other gizmo that brings self-confidence! You're the best!

Now

Take

The

Shot!


[ ] Take the shot and end it!
[ ] You’re overlooking something.
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[x] Take the shot and end it!

Even if we accidentally hit Reimu or Meiling, we can just dispel the darkness and try to hit Cirno again.

Also that Blackwing thing keeps inching closer in those pictures, except for that last one where it backed away from our darkness orb. Is it afraid of the dark?
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__rumia_touhou_and_1_more_drawn_by_zakozako_y__sam
[x] Take the shot and end it!

Same, just take the shot and if you miss take it again.

As for whatever the wing-thing is, I'm not worried. If it attacks us then we'll just shoot that thing too.
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cirno about to be shot
> Take the shot and end it!

You take in a deep breath, focus on your target, and mentally tell yourself that this is the right thing to do. All you need to do is cover her in darkness and that’s all, that’s it.

Yet a tiny bit of d-

No.

You take the shot.

And it hits, the moment you will the darkness to move it lunges towards Cirno’s head faster than you thought possible. And that’s where it stays. No matter how much she shouts in surprise, no matter how hard she tries to freeze her surroundings by instinct. The darkness remains coiled to her head, depriving her of her visual senses and odds of winning like that.

The others are quick on the uptake, Reimu immediately stops caring about keeping her distance and smashes into Cirno with one of her iconic wind god kicks. However, as if possessing a sixth sense, Cirno immediately guards the strike with her sword, the impact of Reimu’s kick makes it crack but otherwise it stands firm. If anything, it is about to start freezing over Reimu’s leg, as making physical contact with a master of ice is a bad idea.

But all is well, for Meiling comes to the rescue with her Yellow Quake Kick, though that name is a bit dramatic, that doesn’t make her kicking Cirno at the back of her skull any less cool. She also takes a moment to check on Reimu, but she refuses help and says that everything is fine. Even so, Meiling grabs said leg and does some chi-thingy to unmelt any ice on Reimu’s skin while the latter just watches with a dissatisfied look on her face, like this a bother.

Still up for a fight and immensely angered, Cirno starts firing bullets blindly left and right in a rage, the intensity behind them higher due to desperation and rage but even so the two girls dodge the attacks with relative ease. And you could guess the rest without looking.

Cirno will try a thing, the others will respond some way and gain an advantage. Hence next phase Cirno tries something else again, fails again, and eventually will run out of stamina.

That’s the vibe of the fight now, and that’s all thanks to you. You took the shot, and you did not miss, it’s surprising how there’s not some weird twist of fate to screw you over.



And none arrive. You’ve indeed done your part and soon enough the fight will end with Cirno the loser. Now you only need to think about what you’ll do in the meantime.

You could spectate the fight some more, but honestly. Isn’t a fight whose result is predetermined and in which you’re not involved in boring to look at?

You could just mess around with whatever else is in here. Like the egg, or the canon, or even that Black Wing thing that’s nowhere to be seen anymore. Oh hey, where did it go?

You look to your left, it’s not there. You look to your right, also not there. No to your behind, up, or down either. That thing known as the Black Wing has just gone and disappeared.

Oh well, that’s one less bother to worry about, isn’t it?



Okay, fine. You’ll keep an eye out in case you see ever see it agai-
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Target found me
Oh, there it is! It’s become more funny-looking with those silly hands that have no arms and oddly weird place to put a mirror on. You can see yourself staring at yourself…

And uh, that’s it? It’s not moving at all. Sure, it has this giant and super sharp claw pointed at you, but it hasn’t stabbed you with it yet. Nor has it done anything else to you so far.

But is it genuinely not moving? Aren’t you the one’s who’s having one of those think fast moments people tend to have in dangerous situations perhaps? You know the ones where you must quickly make a move or something bad may happen to you…or it’s just not moving at all. You can’t tell but doing absolutely nothing isn’t going to solve this problem.

[ ] Assume it’s hostile, defend yourself right now! It’s fight or die after all!

[ ] Assume it’s friendly, maybe it wants an handshake? We’re all monsters here.

[ ] Don’t do either and just scream for help, that way someone else has to decide!
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This is just a test to see if I can reply stuff again. Weird stuff just happened now.
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[x] Assume it’s hostile, defend yourself right now! It’s fight or die after all!

This thing already tried to stab Meiling's eye out, so it clearly isn't friendly.
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fighting it is then
> Assume it’s hostile, defend yourself right now! It’s fight or die after all!

You’re not sure what it is, how it is or why it is. But even so, your body instinctively knows what to do when an unknown person gets way too close for one’s comfort. You quickly move backwards to increase the distance between it and you and that was the perfect move to take too. For its claw has already taken the place where your head was just a second ago and make no doubt about it. The way they swung it clearly had decapitation in mind. Then again, what did you expect out of someone who tried to take Meiling’s eye out just earlier? Its hostility has been set in stone a time ago.


Except not, it hasn’t moved it’s claw at all. Seemingly just content at staying immobile and staring into your face with your own face as if you’re some amazing landscape. Is it interested in you? Or is it trying to achieve something else here? It makes you wonder why it hasn’t tried to harm you despite showing no such reluctance towards Meiling before. But really, what does it want?

An honourable person would show confusion at a display like this, even refuse to fight a creature that has yet to bare its fangs against it. For who knows if the first strike was an instinctive reaction? Did it get startled by the sudden summon and so strike the nearest target? Such thoughts would come to a kind and responsible individual, but that’s just the thing…

You’re not a good person, you’re a youkai. Being aggressive and causing trouble for the tiniest if not pettiest of reasons is your 24/7 job. You don’t need a reason to kick this thing’s ass, just the fact you think it looks suspicious is reason enough to make it regret ever coming out a mother’s womb.

So, with no warning whatsoever or even pre-battle banter. You attack with intent to kill!

First, you put strength into your legs and create a ball of darkness while charging at it, jump to dodge whatever counter the thing may have in store. Drop the darkness right beneath you so it’s blinded while you’re still in the air and at once, with zero remorse. You shoot a barrage of blue and red bullets towards it, knowing that even if damnaku is non-lethal it is still a good way to make one’s foe lose stamina in record time. Said bullets hit their mark dead-on, so you get ready for the final touch.

You clench your right-hand with your left and point it down at your opponent like one would a canon, in no mood for a prolonged fight that has no need to happen, you gather all your strength and power in this one huge blast that shall leave no remains of it. IT WILL ALL END HERE!

How the shadows resonate! Orbs of darkness surround your hands with heat and life! The lack of real blood does not stop the symphony within you! Your will burns brighter than a raging fire!

[“Dark Sign: Nightmare Flames”]
All the pressure within your hands snap, a chaotic vortex of dark liquids rains down on your opponent like droplets of pure spite, unable to dodge or simply not dodging at all. All the dark droplets hit their mark on your foe. Covering them in a very sticky and very flammable substance. Trying not to recall a prior incident, you shoot twin blue lasers towards them now, letting it home in on them as it sets aflame every single droplet that it touches. Which causes an unusual reaction, as instead of just being on fire. The dark flames move on their own, flying straight up the moment they’re activated, like snakes escaping from the earth and rising into the sky, only to drop back down again with the ferocity of…a snake that’s falling. Anyway, your foe’s trapped in the middle of all this and must dodge oil that drips in random patterns, lasers that home close to their location, and flames that appear right behind them and restrict their movement once they come back down.

But again, they’re not dodging at all. They are still taking the whole barrage, and you haven’t removed your view even once from it. No matter how tempting it is to glance at the others right now to see how they’re doing. Something just doesn’t sit right with you here.

If it’s one of the strongest servants Cirno allegedly has. Then surely it should be capable of doing som-a barrage of bullets both blue and white whiz towards you, forcing you to back off and outright dash down once a few get too close for comfort as the bastard knows the neat trick of aiming where one's about to be rather than where they are.

The source of which is now calmly flapping it’s four wings as it approaches you. The Black-Wing looks completely fine…if it wasn’t for all the burn marks on their body that they don’t seem bothered by?

It ignores all the bullets it’s exposing itself to, occasionally flinching but otherwise unbothered with its approach. As if learning from your behaviour, the creature’s middle…center? Blurry space starts to shine for a second and afterwards, all the bullets it’s shooting back at you (albeit sloppily) are now accompanied with the worst kind of bullets that have ever been invented: CURVY LASERS!

[“?????”]
Said lasers at once confine both you and it within a small space. As if they’re hitting walls that aren’t there, they bounce back and forth from spot to spot making the arena you’re both in just that tighter and movement within just that harder. The many colourful bullets flying about are no help either but dodging those isn’t much of a problem to you. Their shooting is surprisingly amateurish but before you can even think about getting cocky, it detaches one of its claws and outright rocket-punches it towards you. Again, you move just out of the w-and get hit by a laser in the side instead. A sharp pain in your side like that of a spear penetrating your heart being is your reward for failing to see that trick coming.

But that’s fine, it’s just a flesh-wound. Well, it’s not a wound AT ALL. It just really hurts and might make you a bit slower, but even so you still think you’ve a good chance at winning this fight.

Cirno is the main-boss here, so this thing must just be a mini-boss! Therefore, no matter what happens it’s not like you could lose! Is what you’d like to be saying right now.

But you don’t, for misplaced confidence is a good way to get your ass kicked.

Speaking off ass, look at that dumb sucker just staring at you like that. You swear there’s some intelligence behind it as even though it’s ‘face’ is just a dumb smiling version of your face, behind those eyes seems to be a certain will…a power would you say. It’s like it’s daring you to look away.

=======================A================================
[ ] It’s trying to intimidate you, stare straight into it’s eyes like a ma-youkai!
[ ] Avoid it’s gaze, it’s not that you’re a baby, you just don’t like that look!
========================A================================

=========================B================================
What’s the next battle-strategy?
[ ] Aggressive, you don’t want to waste time with this thing. So just throw the best, the dirtiest and the most brutal attacks you’ve got on this thing until it eventually drops dead because of them.
[ ] Defensive, you’ve got time and darkness on your side. Mess with its perception, take no overly big risks and just use opportunities from the mistakes it will eventually make, also it’s the one on a timer.
[ ] Write in, because you can make up something better than that.
==========================B===============================

===========================C================================
[ ] Skip button, you can skip this fight if you just want the plot to progress already. (Though the writer will take the worst outcome in which you win the fight.)
===========================C=================================
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[x] It’s trying to intimidate you, stare straight into it’s eyes like a ma-youkai!
[x] Aggressive, you don’t want to waste time with this thing. So just throw the best, the dirtiest and the most brutal attacks you’ve got on this thing until it eventually drops dead because of them.

This thing only seems to move when we are not looking at it. It always stays still when we look directly at it. So if we attack it without taking our eyes off it, it has to just sit there and take it.
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an eye for reference
You don’t look away from it’s pertinent gaze. Determined to surpass it in body and mind. If it’s trying to intimidate you then you’ll just have to make it aware who’s really in charge here! Now to attack!

The creature’s eyes change from comical little black dots into ones more realistic when it's gaze is returned, eyes that are more your own, with their crimson colour and slowly moving pattern, the sight of them is mesmerising if not hypnotic, even so your mind stays your own and your gaze remains on it. Feeling…KNOWING that the thing can probably only move the moment you stop looking at it.

Or does it want you to think that?

You hear a cold chuckle as it’s face grows to the point it’s gigantic, its bright crimson eyes stare back at you with an unusual passion, they investigate the depth of your very soul.

And they found something.

Around you, faint images of your 'past' are dancing about. Pranks that have turned poorly. The corpses of friends that were not saved. Actions you would rather have avoided had you possesed the knowdledge you have now. Every single one of your fears is dragged out of you to be exposed. You know it's an illusion yet your entire being feels it deep in the bones. And that laugh. It just keeps on mocking you, and your sense of self starts to leak away…

Yet you remain anchored to yourself. An intense headache comes over you, the ribbon on your head shines slightly like a flare and then there’s nothing more to look at. There is no more face to be seen on the thing…no, that’s not quite right. Part of your mind thought there was a face there, but for some reason you can see the truth now. Your senses refuse to be fooled any longer and only register its form as it truly exists now. That of a creature whose face was never there and won’t gain yours.

The creature itself, who’s empty eye-place holds a red gem where a face should be. Looks like it can tell that you’re no longer under its influence, that’s it’s prior behaviour even if it did fool you now means nothing as whatever it was planning simply fails to take effect. And that completely confuses it.

You however are quite ready to slaughter it for the offense, so you crack your knuckles and start bl-it’s showing off its belly to you. Laying down in the air like a tool before the fight can continue?

…You’re not sure what to make of that, so you simply gather energy within your hands and prepare to blast it anyway. If it’s trying to fool you now, then fine, it’s position makes blasting it super easy!

Even so, it doesn’t move from its spot, instead letting out some odd schreeching sound that’s the closest thing it can probably make to a whimper? You’re not sure what it’s trying to play at here now. Did it recognize you as the superior life-form or did you beat its trump card and now it gives up? Was pretending that it could only move when it wasn't looked at, just so you'd stare at it the only strategy the thing had? Did it have that much confidence in whatever it was trying to do to you, that it's has now dissapeared with it's failure?

Is this thing genuinely giving up or just waiting for you to drop your guard for an easy strike?

[ ] Blow it up anyway, trick or not you’ve already decided to exterminate anything Anon Related.
[ ] Spare it? It looks like it’s lost its confidence…and if it gives up then you’re it’s Alpha now!

You've got completely sound logic voter, also that was the right decision you made just so you know.
This choice will end the fight, afterwards it's time to see how the others were doing and bam ploooooooooooot.
Though I can't wait for the day I can write an genuinely exciting fight, one day, one day. Until next update.
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[x] Spare it? It looks like it’s lost its confidence…and if it gives up then you’re it’s Alpha now!

Didn't Reimu say we weren't supposed to kill things anymore? We should probably respect Reimu's wishes, seeing as how she's still here and capable of pounding us if we don't comply.
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__rumia_touhou_drawn_by_kuze_matsuri__sample-33e03
WHaaaaaaaaat?

No murder? After all this time since your last encounter with a person that nobody will probably mind if they die, you want to play the better person and let this thing be completely intact? Just like that?

That's not fair!

Don't be a better person!

Kick that dumb little thing in it's soft tummy before ripping it's eye out!

Make it regret ever facing you by giving it the most terrible of traumas!

Take your REVEANGENCE!!!

Though...you're not wrong about the Hakurei part, she totally just told you to not murder people or even joke about doing it...you think. And she can totally kick your ass when she's in kick-ass distance...and you don't think she won't notice you doing this, because her senses are no joke...

But still! BUT STILL! That doesn't mean you'll be satisfied by having it acknowledge you as the winner, no, you want something more!

You want to do something evil, something extremely humiliating to it!

Only when every ounch of dignity has left it's body will you even think of forgiving it! And even then that doesn't mean you're just going to let it run off, it chose a fight so it gets the consequences of losing one! You're not going to spare it only for it to strike at you the moment you let your guard down...so let's make it unable of standing up!

F-F-F-FINISH THE THING OFF!

NON-LETHALLY!

BUT STILL HUMILIATING!

THAT'S THE ONLY WAY TO END THIS FIGHT!

[ ] Write in.

I'm not gonna lie, this is an update stall. I should have the complete update done tmrw. But do give a method to make sure that after this, this thing won't be a threat or a problem anymore. As I'm curouis what you'd do.
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[x] Pretend your darkness is ink and draw a stupid looking face on it using your darkness. Glasses, mustaches, buck teeth, the whole nine yards.

If Cirno can't get our darkness off of her head, then this thing shouldn't be able to get our darkness off either. Lets see it try to be taken seriously with silly drawings all over its face.
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There your opponent is humiliated
[x] Pretend your darkness is ink and draw a stupid looking face on it using your darkness. Glasses, mustachos, buck teeth, the whole nine yards.

That’s an easy job and in less than a minute, you’ve already made a masterpiece!

Look at the fake glasses that have been drawn around its eyes, giving the creature the look of a NERD and so somebody who’s never left their mommy’s basement because their NERD-stuff is so appealing!

Look at the dumb little hat that’s on top of it now and behold how it gives the creature the look of somebody who wants to get girls but can’t because of some pathetic excuse that protects their ego!

Look at the little moustache on its lips that makes it half Italian (A race of humans that’s chubby and makes cheese if you recall correctly) and look at how the flower on its head lowers its masculinity even if it’s a girl or not, because no matter what.

A flower is the status of the anti-awesome!!!

Just don't let a certain Sunflower Lady hear that.

Such humiliation is too much for the creature, and whatever filter it had in store disappears instantly, showing that what lies before you are a fuzz-ball whose body has been tampered with. Though you were pretty sure it had no face, here the creature visibly shivers while looking at you with small tears in its eyes. The part where its wings meet its body are of a gnarly blue as veins pop out and its muscles twitch in some perverted rhythm as more blood flows to those parts then it’s small little heart could pump out on its own…implying that it’s insides are even worse.

“You’re my bitch now.” Of course, you don’t care and just pat the creature’s cheek with one hand.

Not caring that it flinches at your touch either. “You lost to me so now you belong to me, it’s that simple. So, from now on, you’ll do everything I want you to do for me or I’ll make sure that you wished you were dead instead~” now you grab it with the other hand as well, keeping a firm grip on it’s face as you stare into its eyes, a mad glint shining in yours. “So don’t go thinking that I’m preserving you out of mercy. I’m just a pragmatic girl and you’re such a cute creature. So why shouldn’t I have a pet? I sure deserve it! As for whether you’ll deserve something, we’ll see about that in time. Until then you obey me, okay?” it takes too long to answer so you squeeze their cheeks. “Oookaaay?”

The creature ponders its decision and glances with its eyes at the egg a few steps away. Before glancing back at you and then glancing back at it, as if to ask whether it can have it and in exchange i-

“No, no, no! You’re not getting it.” With a bemused smile, you get closer to the Black-Wing and whisper into its ears plenty of wonderful and original threats about what you could do to it if it refuses to serve you, doesn’t serve you as well as it could or if it even dares doubt your commands.

This is enough to make it stop moving…ponder about its options and let out the closest thing to a whimper before it moves it’s face against the ground when you let it go as if bowing to you.

“Good doggy.” And thus, you’ve obtained a new companion: The Black-Wing! Though you wonder on how it could possible be useful since it can fly but so can you, it’s not really that fast and it refuses to move when looked at or was that a trick? It can kind of stare into someone’s eyes to reveal their fears which honestly only made you angry and it also has a cowardly nature, so all in all bleh.

Even so…you guess it could serve as inventory storage? You’ve got a bunch of useless stuff in your pockets, like a ridiculous amount of stuff that shouldn’t be possible to carry by hand ridiculous. Even so you found a way, but what if you ever need something to be intact only to find out later that the thing broke cause you carried it while in the middle of a fight or two?

Hence it is now the time to use the advanced method off: Shoving the garbage you don’t need into its mouth!

That’s not a joke, Fuzzballs can’t digest stuff yet still have a huge stomach for some reason. They like the sensation of having something tasty inside of themselves but that doesn’t change the fact that some people have found alternative uses for such abilities, like you’re about to do now.

And honestly when you mean more place to put stuff in, you mean like, you could put in a mountain of garbage into it, and it wouldn’t even be slowed down. So, you’re sure that could be useful if you’re ever going to need to collect some stuff or just get rid of…troublesome witnesses.

He He he! Oh boy, will you make proper use out of your new slave!
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Everybody is here
“Hey Rumia, over here!” interrupting your devilish thoughts is a familiar voice. That of Hong Meiling who’s just a short step away from you yet still felt like shouting your name. She looks completely fine.

Aside from the many bruises on her body from being hit by huge objects.

Deep cuts around her clothes due to swords flying about yet aren’t even close to suggestive due to the boundary of decency and indecency.

And finally traces of water on her face that honestly could just be sweat if the way she’s exhaling in an ‘I had a good workout today’ is saying anytime. Looks like the fight must have been big.

“We’ve defeated Cirno!” the girl says with cheer and even lifts her hand to ask for a high-five before she notices the creature in front of you and quickly moves back into a combative stance. “Ah, but never mind! Get right behind me! There’s an enemy in front of you!” she shouts this time with worry, it’s wholesome in a way but the fact she thinks you need protecting is kind of…

“If it was an enemy, they’d be fighting by now dumbass.” The Hakurei replies with a dead-pan tone as she carries both of her victims attached to chains and crushed by ying-yang balls. “Also, she doesn’t loo..ugh.” she stops the sentence to grab her own head for a moment, sharply inhaling some air as if she’s in pain yet not a single wound lies on her body. Except from some water drops everywhere which again isn’t that unusual…though her cheeks look a little bit reddish.

Meiling at once turns to her “Are you allrigh- “

“Don’t, I’m FINE.” but her help is swiftly denied. The Hakurei lets out a small sneeze and then continues as if nothing happened. “All that ice may have given me a small cold, that dumb girl had WAY more power than should be possible but even so, she was not nor will ever be a match for me.”

As if remembering something embarrassing, Meiling scratches her cheek in embarrassment. “Yeah…we were totally going to win, but still. If that thing had hit, then the both of us would- “

“Don’t talk about it, It was never a close match, and nobody needs to know more about this.” The hakurei replies with an odd hotness, as if the fight itself is a memory that she’d rather forget about. “Even so, this doesn’t bode well, if some dumb fairy got this strong then…” she trails off.

Meiling doesn’t reply to it either. “Anyway!” and takes the attention to you and your slave. “What have you been doing Rumia? Did you make a friend? If so, that’s one cute pal you now have!” again, she talks to you as if you’ve been a child playing in a playground, but she doesn’t mean it in bad way.

Even so, you just calmly shrug and lie as naturally as you breathe. “This Black-Wing thing has decided to join my party!” well that’s not a lie, but you’ve haven’t told the true details, so it still counts.

“What a joy for you.” The hakurei says as naturally as she can, that is in such a bored tone that you can’t tell if she’s being sarcastic or genuinely means it. “Anyway, let’s get to business now.”

Business?

“….” The hakurei doesn’t say more at your ignorance and simply moves one hand to lazily wave at one person.

That is, your old pal Cirno who’s currently dazed and tied up right behind her, crown on her head and all.

[ ] Just stare at the Hakurei dumbly, not getting what she wants out of you.
[ ] Understand non-verbal communication and do what she wants. [Write-in]
[ ] Oh! But before all that, don't forget to pick up the egg too! Don't want it to get stolen!
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[x] Understand non-verbal communication and do what she wants.
-[x] Get rid of Cirno's crown

I'm somewhat surprised it hasn't fallen off her head already considering the beating Cirno has taken.
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[X] Understand non-verbal communication and do what she wants.
Crown off, Cirno normal! I want happy Cirno, not power hungry!
[X] Oh! But before all that, don't forget to pick up the egg too! Don't want it to get stolen!
Well duh.
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[X] Oh! But before all that, don't forget to pick up the egg too! Don't want it to get stolen!

Oh, Oh! That’s right! The egg is kind of an important thing so losing it is absolutely no good!

To retrieve the egg, you must stand up, walk towards, and pick it up. You’re already doing the standing up part so you’re certain the other two steps won’t be that hard either. And you’re right.

Because you just did that, you just walked towards the egg. Glared at your new slave the moment it twitched a bit and picked up the egg. Only for it to sensory overload your hands with feelings of pain because it’s covered in seals and talismans that are quite holy and thus your own allergy. Youch!

“You didn’t have to do that.” The Hakurei adds in as she observes your fumbling. “Just leave that bit to me and do your thing already. I don’t have all d-“ you tune her out the moment she starts complaining again but do notice that she’s about to pick it up herself. So, it’s still mission accomplished. There’s absolutely nobody that could steal anything the Hakurei picks up for she has the dead-grip of an…

What’s an animal with a good grip?

She has the grip of an Oni holding booze!

Not that Oni's are animals, they're people too!

Anyway, that little diversion taken care off. It is time to go to the main event.

The removal of the crown! That evil device that’s made your Cirno all weird and confused, by removing it you’re one hundred percent sure that she’ll go back to normal, and everything will be ok!

So, let’s go remove it already. You move back to where the Hakurei dropped both loser-goons, which happens to be right in front of you and right next to Meiling. She’s probably just going to spectate this so you don’t mind her presence then again why would you mind it? She’s a great lady, isn’t she?

She is, and you’re stalling a bit here. You don’t know why but the moment you take a step closer to Cirno’s prone body. Your legs become a bit more skittish, and you start to feel nervous too.

You gulp down those feelings anyway and get to work. You get to your knees next to Cirno’s head and notice that the latter looks absolutely wasted. The way her head comically moves around as her eyes have the dizzy symbol in them don’t match at all with the number of needles that have pierced everything that’s under her neck, while everything under her waist must be absolutely crushed by the sheer weight and burning feeling of that Ying-Yang ball she’s under. There’s no blood drawn whatsoever but even so the experience is no less painful, though she deserves all of that.

The only intact part is her little crown, though it’s gone from a complete golden one to a humbler silver tiara with a beautiful red gem encrusted within it. The same one as the three other ones you’ve seen before on other anon-stuff. You guess that means those things are like batteries?

“Think you mean source, kid.” Meiling peps up. “Yeah, I saw you eyeing that little crystal and I figured I’d tell you that I’m sensing an ABSURD amount of life-essence inside that lil gem.”

“Life energy?” you glance her way, curious about what she means and not looking for an excuse to stall even more.

“No, not life-energy, or chi for that matter. I’m sensing Life-essence inside that thing.” And before you can even ask, she elaborates on what she means on her own. “I’ll make it easy to understand, see there’s three things that compose a living creature: The body, the mind, and the soul. The body is fuelled by life energy. The mind is fueled by mental energy and the soul is fueled by life essence, though why people don’t just call it soul-energy I don’t know. Do you get what I’m saying so far?”

You just nod yes and move your hands a bit closer to Cirno’s head, yet not trying to remove the crown in case Meiling is about to say something about how touching it could be bad.

“Good, you understand fast. Now, in this case and that case.” She points at both the Crown and the Black-Wing and even yourself. “Change someone’s body and the mind may warp while the soul remains the same, remove one’s mind and the body will rot unless another mind occupies it. Remove one’s soul and both body and mind will refuse to function unless someone else puppeteers the empty space. Kill the body and both mind and soul will depart to the other world, whether the mind persists depends on whether or not you reincarnate or become some sort of undead. In this case all those scenarios are happening at the exact same time for you three or perhaps everyone?” She concludes.

“…What?” you don’t really get what she means. “I’m sorry, your explanation is nice and all, but could you do this AFTER I’ve removed the Crown from Cirno? If I delay it now, I may not be brave enough to do it again!“ not to forget that Cirno already told you a bit about how the anon-stuff works already so whatever she's about to say could just be redundant.

“Ah, yes, yes!” you don’t even need to say more. Meiling waves her hand around in an oddly stiff manner when she notices that she started babbling out of nowhere. “Sorry, this just happens to be my specialty, so I got the urge to show off my knowledge a little. I can monologue later…” you don’t know why, but the way she ended that sentence felt like it implied a feeling of disappointment.

But anyway, it’s time to finally remove that crown with zero distractions!

You put your hands on Cirno’s silver crown and the moment you do so, the latter’s eyes become straight again, and the most awkward kind of eye-contact is made as you notice that your kind of leaning very close to her. Even so, you don’t let that stop you and pull the crown as hard as you can!

It doesn’t budge.

Not even a tiny inch.

“Hmph, of course you can’t remove it. You traitorous tree-knocker.” Her holiness, stick-up-her-ass-tidus lets out a mocking yet also acidly snort at your failed attempt to remove it. “Only someone as amazi- “and she’s about to say a bunch of meaningless stuff like threats to you because you are a traitor or maybe on how she’s going to recover from this situation and that now is the last chance to join her again.

[ ] A shame you don’t care. Pull on that crown EVEN HARDER!!!
[ ] Before that, let’s make Cirno ‘sleep’ again lest she monoblobs during it all.
[ ] Let her talk, just for the tiniest chance that she may tell info that backfires on herself again
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To my immense embarassment, I have posted the wrong image.

This one is the correct one but I can't edit it back in.

Please forgive my sin voters.
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[x] A shame you don’t care. Pull on that crown EVEN HARDER!!!

We pulled an Anon egg out of our own guts just a little bit ago. You think we can't pull an anon crown off someone's head? Unlike the egg, the crown isn't even inside of Cirno, so this should be a piece of cake.

Besides, even if we end up completely scalping Cirno, she is an immortal fairy so she'll be totally fine.
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>>32022

You can definitely try harder. The first pull was just that kind of pull you do slopilly with one hand while under the assumption the thing would give way super easily. Pulling extra hard is with both your hands and all your muscles. Though you may be underestimating your own strenght here. You're a lot stronger than just scalping.

If you can force a tree out of the ground then you can totally rip someone's head off, of course that's not actually going to happen but if this was dnd and you rolled 1 at athetlics then yeah...

Anyway you sure you don't to choke her a little bit? She might say hurtful stuff if you don't!

I jest, I jest. ....but what if?

Jokes aside I'll update this evening, until then votes still count.
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> A shame you don’t care. Pull on that crown EVEN HARDER!!!

To be specific you don’t care much about what the Faker has to say right now. It’s surprising how even now she still seems fully convinced that she has control over the situation despite having already been defeated and being reduced to this pitiful state. It only makes it clear to you that she’s got absolutely no self-awareness right now or maybe she’s unable of perceiving any kind of loss.

That must be the case because why else would the girl whose entire body except for her head is completely restrained look at you with bright eyes and absolutely zero doubt in herself?

“Mph, you’re admiring my regal charm, aren’t you?” said fairy notices you’re staring at her. “Don’t worry I can see in your eyes what you’re trying to say. You don’t need to say a single word.”

Okay, you won’t talk to her then and make the firm decision to ignore absolutely everything she’s about to say. You put your arms around her fancy little crown again or at least are about to.

Because the mere gesture of it makes the concerned fairy twitch her head about as she stares straight into your eyes with the most burning sensation of anger and discomfort that she can muster while spouting a bunch of terrible things, like how you’re a filthy traitor or how you’re hurting her, or she’ll never forgive you. Plenty of words meant to distract you by hitting you in the feelies basically, but to no avail. As it is obvious to you that she’s just trying to buy time for an opportunity to turns things around which won’t ever come. Not only that but you’re in the right and she’s in the wrong.

Though she’s still moving her head about frantically, which is a problem easily solved…

By just putting power in your arm and forcing her head against the ground like she’s a filthy mutt, you also position yourself to be sitting on top of her too just so that she’ll feel extra uncomfortable for honestly no other reason than to show up her pettyness. Though doing so makes you feel a bit odd, as in your chest tightens again, your breathing becomes a bit raspier, and you have to put in absolutely every ounce of will inside of you to not commit the most cliché action that is spilling tears while on top her as you reminiscence about the good old times and why the heck things are like this.

With a stifled breath, you manage to prevent the tears from spilling and dismiss the memory of the two of you play-fighting and rationalize that the real Cirno has yet to be freed…and that feels good.

The thought of Cirno being possessed by some faker makes a magnificent and strange energy course down your arms and legs, like waves of lightning. The energy is potent, intoxicating, and familiar.

For it’s a feeling that’s you've said has been fueling you but you've yet had to truly feel.

It’s a feeling of hate, hate that’s now enhanced with an amazing power. That of the moral certainty that you’re in the right. That everything you’re doing to her is fine since she’s not the real one, she’s just a dumb fake that’s pretending to be Cirno while the real one is forced to watch in helplessness.

And you hate her for that, you truly hate her with your every being. Just like Wriggle and Alice before this faker is nothing more than a mockery of the original one and you hate her for the resemblance, you hate her for fooling you and you hate her so much you’d wish she’d just die!

If you, could you’d have gone and crushed her face with your boot already just to see her brains splatter everywhere, choked her until her skin becomes a deadly pale blue and even forced a chainsaw so deep down her ******* that she wouldn’t be able to walk or sit for years to come.

“Pathetic, I can see the violent urges in your eyes, Rumia. So how come you’re not acting on them?” Cirno replies with a confident smile as she returns the glares you give her by tenfold. “Don’t go pretending you’re a saint now. If anything, you’re just an opportunistic little cockroach, just following whoever takes pity on you and taking whatever chance you have to screw others over. I’m sure you want to mess me up even though you’ve not defeated me nor can take me in a fair fight, nor can I defend myself in this state…or is that what you like? Are you- “that’s enough, you tune out the rest.

And get back to work, you firmly put the crown slash tiara within your fingers. And start pull-

“Did our friendship mean that little to you? For you to throw it so easily away? Nah, don’t even try ignoring me bud. I know I got your attention and frankly, you’ve broken my heart you know? I was going to give one quart of Gensokyo as your own little playground, I was going to make you sublime! And here you are betraying me for some red-coloured bimbos. I truly trusted you Rumia…a-and…it really sucks that you’re doing this to me. What did they bribe you with to throw me down like this?”

…For the love of god, make her shut up. You don’t bother telling her you weren’t bribed at all and simply get back to getting a good grip on that blasted crown and heave! Ho! Here it go-

“You know, I would have understood if you fought me straightforwardly, cause then it’s just an easy case of whoever believes in their cause the most is the strongest and thus the one who will win. The two red-girls did exactly that, they beat me fair and square. But you? You hid like a coward, and I’ve finally realized that is perhaps your true nature. You are a coward who takes the easy way out and as a matter of fact. I hate cowards, you the most out of them all and I can only hope that once you’re done crawling about here that someone will have the decency to end your miserable life because I won’t.”

…There’s no use telling her to shut up, she’s not the real one after all. So don’t let those words get to you and get to work already. She’s blatantly trying to distract you and that should not be working!

You finally pull on the goddamned crown like how one would a tre-

“So, here’s the thing. I won’t let you have the satisfaction of riping the fruit here. Go call your red friends and have them try to remove this fancy crown instead because if you put your grubby little paws on me one more time. I’m going to bite my tongue off and choke on it just to spite you and even if this crown is removed, I will not join you, not now or I’d rather di-mppp?” fed up with her nonsense, you grab her by the throat with both of your hands then put the left one into her mouth and grab the crown with the other. She’s said too much and now whatever careful actions you were about to take are cancelled because you no longer give a crap on whether or not removing that crown could hurt her if you’re not careful. All you want is for her to stop talking already.

“Oi, don’t get so feisty there.” a supportive hand is placed on your shoulder by Meiling as she has seen the whole little dramafest unfold. “I can understand that you’re angry and that’s fine, it’s a natural emotion. But don’t let it get too much in your head or you may do things you’ll regret.”

“I didn’t ask for a moral. Mind your own business!” is what you’d like to say right back at her, but instead you let out a sigh, don’t answer her and finally, with absolutely no distractions remaining other than Cirno biting your fingers as hard as she can, it is time to remove that blasted crown!

“STOP RIGHT THERE!” a new voice filled with panic can be heard, one that’s rapidly approaching the area. “DON’T REMOVE THE CROWN, IT’LL MASSIVELY BACKFIRE ON EVERYONE, WAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIIT!!!!”

[ ] Too late, this Crown is getting off no matter what any new arrival says.

[ ] What is it this time? Look and see who's shouting all of a sudden.
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[X] What is it this time? Look and see who's shouting all of a sudden.

I don't think Cirno or the crown will be going anywhere at the moment, considering the handle we have. Waiting a few moments to hear potentially handy information can't be too much of a handful. Plus, it's been a joint effort so far; let's not get this situation out of hand.
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[X] What is it this time? Look and see who's shouting all of a sudden.

Waiting…God, do you loathe doing that.

You want to just ignore whoever has decided to come out at exactly this moment to be a pain in the butt.

You want to make the faker in front of you PAY for everything she’s done.

Yet, despite every single muscle in your body telling you otherwise.

You manage to not rip off that little decoration of your prey’s skull as you move your neck to gain a better look on whoever’s talking now or at least you’ll do that once you’re done glaring daggers at the girl below you. Because that's something you wanna do that can't actually backfire.

You'd love to do a lot more things, but that's the thing isn't it?

What you WANT is not the same as what you SHOULD do, you don’t recall if you already knew this but anyway, you’re pretty surprised by your own…

Self-control?

Discipline?

You can’t really get a fancy word on why you haven’t been reduced to an angry little hobgoblin that’s throwing curses and bullets everywhere in an oh so satisfying rage.

In fact, the face that’s reflected through the Faker’s eyes is one that’s completely stoic, whatever rage is inside of you must be like…an ocean? You’re so angry that all the pissed off water has spilled out of the cup, leaving only the warmest but also calmest little drops of pure spite that really matter.

Or you've become too tired to give everything an explosive reaction.

When's the last time you relaxed?

Must have been a long time ago, otherwise you don’t know why you’ve got the face of someone who just heard the world’s unfunniest joke.

Then again that joke could be the situation that you’re in right now…

But that’s enough mumbling, you go ahead and take a proper look now (Without letting go of the Faker of course). Muttering all the while that if this just happens to be a random fairy or someone who tries to trick you all then you might snap and…

Why does Meiling look so shocked? “What in the…” the girl has her mouth agape and one of her arms raised as if she’s facing a tempest of shock. The kind of dumb pose only seen in plays or fiction.

It’s the same for the Hakurei, her eyes are so wide open that it looks like they might fall out of her sockets. “That…that…voice…. You’re kidding….” And that alone may as well toll the oh no bells.
But that’s enough. Who’s giving off that kind of reaction?

Time to find out and you do, the moment you see their face your mouth grows ajar and everyone as if synced like a machine says the exact same thing at the exact same thing as if it was rehearsed.
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnVltopWrfY

“ANOTHER CIRNO!!!!”

You can’t believe your eyes, those blue clothes, that small yet tough frame, those eyes filled with a determination that no flame can melt. Another Cirno stands before the ridiculously huge golden door as the very light of the heavens shine down her back. But how is that possible, why is th-

“Are my eyes fooling me? I can’t believe it, I’m seeing another Cirno!” Meiling shouts over you in surprise and repeatedly points at the Cirno that she’s not sure if they’re actually real or not. “Did she have an evil twin or something? Cause I have no idea what’s happening, and my heart is loving it!!” though unlike you she takes the situation as is and is all excited about it. What a strong heart…

“Your eyes aren’t lying…” The Hakurei is still staring in disbelief, but quickly pinches her own nose as if that’d help her concentrate. “But I don’t believe it still, why appear now of all times? How shady…”

“AWESOME!” A third person replies before you can even get your bearings straight. That being the Cirno that’s underneath you, she was silent for a while now and outright stopped moving the moment she saw the faker. But now looks at them with stars in her eyes. “Oh my gosh, I didn’t know I had a twin-sister! Hey other me! Come here and save me from these villains!” already planning to use them for her own gain, confirming to you yet again that she can’t possibly be the real deal.

“The only villain here is you! Don’t put yourself in other people’s boats of awesomeness.” Other-Cirno taps her head as she refuses to make eye-contact with her counterpart. As if the latter is something so repugnant that simply looking at the thing could make her Ill if not worse.

“W-what?” her plans at once shattered, the Faker can only stutter in dumb surprise.

To the annoyance of the Other Cirno who lets out a sigh and glares at her. “You know what you did, stop pretending to be someone you’re not and show us your true skin you low-grade impostor!”

“Impostor?!” the accusation makes Cirno rile up like a bull that sees red. “I think YOU’RE the faker around here. With your dumb basic clothes and stupid-dumb arrival out of nowhere! Do you really think you can compare yourself to me? The ruler of this palace and soon to be Overlord? BAH! You’re not even good to be my fa- “

“I’ll make you eat those words!” Other-Cirno doesn’t even wait and immediately starts walking towards the bunch of you.
Only for Reimu to step forward and block her path. “Yeah no, I’m not watching another fight and you’ve yet to explain what you’re doing here. So, you better make sense of this or else I’ll get mad.”

“Move out of my way Reimu, I’ve been waiting just for this opportunity and if any of you get in my way then I won’t mind beating up all of y…wait, oh. You were asking a question?” Other-Cirno was about to just dismiss her and demand she gets out of the way, only to read the lines yourself bud.

“Same here! How did you even know we were here and stuff?” Meiling asks stuff to her as well.

To which, the Other-Cirno lets out a sigh in frustration but explains anyway. “Long story short: You’re all being pranked super hard right now, cause that thing in front of you? That’s some goddess of lies or deceit or spaghetti whatever having fun at your expense like the doodoo brains you are. Whatever fight you had she just lost on purpose on the hopes that someone tries to remove the seal off her head because it’s got the absurd condition that only someone with actual malice towards her can pull it off. As for why I’m here? To make that NOT happen d’uuh and kick her ass for pretending to be me! There’s only one me after all and that me should be me!”

“Psh, what a convenient story.” Not one to be accused and just take it, the faker starts talking back. “So, you’re what? Some gallant hero out to save everyone. Like that’s something not super sus- “she stops talking for a second as gears grind in her head….and she lets out a small smile. “You know what? She’s totally right! I’m totally a goddess and stuff and you should NOT remove that crown from me. Also, I’m like super strong against balls that crush people so every second that I’m restrained like this is a second that’s getting you all closer to your doom, so listen to her words!”

“Oh god no…” Realizing something through this exchange, the Hakurei does a face palm. “Yeah, no. I’m not playing spot the impostor with you all!” and she just points her stick at the Cirno in front of her. “So, guess what? I’ll just beat up the both of you and then the goonies behind me can handle that useless nonsense, okay? So do me a favour other Cirno, don’t move and close your eyes okay?”

“I guess that works too…” Meiling sounds a bit bored by that kind of action but sees no reason to stop a Hakurei in action.

Other-Cirno isn’t intimidated at all, instead she looks past the Hakurei, past Meiling as well.

And makes straight eye-contact with you. “Sup Rum, tell your goons to get out of my way before I’ll give them a spanking pretty, please.” The sarcasm in her voice is thick, even so she just asked for your help.

Why she asked yours of all people you’re not sure, but it could just be a way to insult the other two.

So you might look silly if you actually try to help, or mean to her if you don't.

How do you feel about this? About this whole situation to be specific?



Okay, that was a silly question. Of which you know the answer too. You’re confused as all hell and even that description sounds mild. You should be panicking; you should be screeching in frustration yet here you are staring right back at this Other-Cirno with the most stoic face you’ve ever had.

So, let’s ask a better question.

What will you do now?

[ ] The writer could give you options to choose from, but naah. Give me a juicy fat [Write in] voter.
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[x] Get that crown off Cirno's head.

All I know for sure is that that crown is not good and it needs to go one way or another. Besides, we aren't removing the crown out of malice, we are removing it because we want to help our friend.

Also even if removing the crown does unseal Cirno somehow, Reimu's anti-youkai orb should keep her at bay.
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[x] Get that crown off Cirno's head using FRIENDSHIP.
-[x] Embrace the HAM by soliloquizing with totally necessary hand gestures and tone changes throughout:
--Behold, before and behind, two bearing a friend's visage.
--Bewilderment I bare!
--Betwixt I lie, a never fallen friend, and a fallen friend.
--Both represent the worst and best of fate.
--Bemused I am; yet, bold I shall be!
--Be broken binding for I desire it; for a friend, I act!

I really hope that the stage presence will seize everybody; otherwise, we might just get bonked in the head during a speech like this. Caution might be warranted against the other-Cirno because they spoke out against the spaghetti god iirc that deity has been nothing but helpful so far.

Also, how did Cirno with a crown talk if we had a hand in her mouth? Did we remove it in the surprise of the other Cirno showing up?
>you grab her by the throat with both of your hands then put the left one into her mouth
>with absolutely no distractions remaining other than Cirno biting your fingers as hard as she can
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oh boy here we go
/forest/res/31922.html#32029" class="ref|forest|31922|32029

It's implied that by your surprise she could spit it out yeah, cause you're in shock at the sight rn.
I should have written that yeah, or give you as well one of those 'OH MY GOD' expressions where one puts their hands in the air and stuff. Call that a minor mistake from me.

Though, you've got a small error yourself. The god that's been helpful so far is the Meatball God, the Spaghetti God is the culprit of all this or at least both Cirno's have said that in their own way.

You can definitely try stage-presence and I'll write more about that this evening cause I already wrote a whole update right now and will just make it perfectly work given some more time.




[x] Get that crown off Cirno's head.

Now that’s an idea, you’ve got no idea what to make of this situation. But even so that doesn’t change the fact that something could happen if you remove said crown and at this point…you’d rather skip to immediately doing that then having to stay in a room with TWO Cirno’s of all things.

“A shame your plans have been set in Ice!” A shame that the moment you try to do so, the Other Cirno quickly flies past the Hakurei to shove a Spell-card in front of your face. “Cause I’m not letting that happen! And if words don’t convince you then my strength will, I challenge you to a Danmaku Match!” ah, there’s the nuisance all right. Now you’ll have to fight a Cirno just to remove a crown from the other Cirno because one of them is probably an impostor and why is your life like this…

You withhold any snarky comment you have and just give the Hakurei and Meiling a glance. The words “Can someone deal with this girl?” so clear on your face that no words need to be said.

The Hakurei though annoyed by the fairy just lifts her shoulders and gives you a shrug, “She’s not breaking any rules. So, you’re going to have to fight or just back off, you’ll get no help here grue.”

Meiling looks a bit apologetic as she scratches her back, “Yeah, sorry. You heard what Reimu said and if nobody is trying to kill one another. Ganging up on her right now would be unfair.”

“In shorter words, you’re going to have to fight her!” The Cirno behind you speaks up, her tone so peppy that you’re tempted to give her a back kick in the face. “And you’re going to lose to-mpjjhh” but you don't, instead you put back the one hand you've removed out of her mouth due to surprise and just calmly step on her face for the exact same effect.

You wonder if you could've used a chain instead, but quickly remove that from your head as such a visual would be way too...intense in a way. Though your shame levels are at a minimun you'd rather not go overboard on this still.

“That’s right, not-me!” Other-Cirno replies, she’s got a bright smile and is now wagging a finger confidently at you, as if she’s somehow outsmarted you. Keep in mind you're litteraly trampling on her Doppel-ganger right now to silence them yet she doesn't acknowledge it in any way, “Sorry bud, but you’re a thousand battles too fresh to possibly win against the likes of me. Just back off and you won’t be humiliated.” Her face becomes sterner and more focused after she warns you on how she’s ready to give this her all and again, does not seem to give a basket about what you're doing to the other other Cirno.

“…Words are nice and all, but those who bark the most bite the least now don’t they?” still when faced with a gaze like that, your own bitterness starts to leak out and you stare back at her, or to be more precise down at her with a tiny fake-smirk as you’re taller than her and don’t mind showing that off. The stepping on the other Cirno making it look smugger than the smuggiest face that has ever smugged.

“….” She doesn’t respond to that, just looking you straight in the eyes and then frowning. As if she saw something ugly within you. “Fine, then I’m going to show you something. Everyone back off.”

The moment everyone takes a few steps back, Cirno squishes into fists beside her, concentrates her power and instant starts spinning in place causing a great outpour of snow and ice to move beside her with such power and speed that surpasses any seen by raging snowstorm at the top of a mountain. It doesn’t even end there as bullets of a rainbow spin out of it and create random patterns like that of snow-angels. Their pattern so tight that only someone with much patience and homing bullets could go through with it. Then she suddenly stops as a white flash covers the area and all the bullets promptly freeze up into white bullets that all home in one target of her choice.

“A spell-card that’s got exceptional defense and exceptional offense. What a strategy…” embracing her inner martial artist manga protagonist heart, Meiling starts commenting on the move for no reason. “But to controll so many bullets after such a dizzying move can only mean that she’s been practicing, hasn’t she? That reason aside, is this kind of move even allowed Hakurei?”

For your own remembrance, which you do remember. Most spell-cards must been accepted before-hand by the Hakurei before one can actually use them. At least in theory, it’s more a rule of ‘Make a move that’s too busted and the Hakurei will come bust your ass’ kind of unsaid thing to remember.

“I’ll allow it.” And the Hakurei does allow it, saying nothing more after that. “Try not to lose too badly, Grue. This will make for a nice distraction.” Never mind, she did give you some sort of ‘encouragement’, you think it is one. She calmly sits on her knees and pulls out a cup of tea out of nowhere, blatantly announcing that she’s using the situation shown to take her own little break.

“So, what’ll it be friend?” Other-Cirno speaks to you again, she looks not tired at all and is quite confident yet the way she’s looking at you feels a bit too overly acty-like. “If you move aside now, I will say nothing. I will not mock, I will not scold, and I will forget this ever happened and not let anyone else thinks less of you for it.” Oh, is she reluctant to fight you then?

“Move aside, now. It is not too late.” oh, that outright comfirms it.

Absolute nonsense, that sentence alone draws your ire. “Yes, it is, it was way too late the moment I entered this place. It was way too late the moment I woke up today. I won’t let anyone cow me around anymore nor have I ever done so, so that’s not going to change any-time soon pal!”

With that shout and a combat stance ready, you’ve accepted the situation in front of you, it’s completely unfair, very arbitrary, and very much a timewaster. But rules are rules so you’re going to have to obey and fight her now. Oddly enough you’re not even feeling remotely bad about it now.

The only little ‘Don’t fight your friend’ thought you have is the idea that you could find a way to distract her and then swiftly remove the crown anyway, just for the extra spite. You don’t think the Hakurei is going to give you much trouble for doing that…at least nothing more than an aggressive scolding but hey in the end that’s a much more time-efficient method now isn’t it? You think it is.

Even so, it takes you a moment to decide on whether you’ll engage or not.

But then out of nowhere, YOU OBVOUISLY DECIDE ON THE LATTER, NO SHIIIIIIIIIIIIII-

Ahem, yeah. You’re not playing along this time, and you absolutely know what to do.

And how to do it. You’re going to do something so out-off-nowhere that it just HAS to surprise everyone. Giving you just the right amount of time to skip this completely unnecessary fight!

Just got to take deep breath to prepare for all that. So, until then!

[x] [x] Get that crown off Cirno's head using FRIENDSHIP.
-[x] Embrace the HAM by soliloquizing with totally necessary hand gestures and tone changes throughout.

This vote will be taken this evening, unless a tie happens, or people vote for something else.

Enjoy the rest of your day voter!
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Too late to now update, will do so tmrw cuz im sleepy.

Until then!
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dance like your life depends on it
Suddenly, a spark of brilliance shines with your brain-juices!

Clearly the best way to get out of this situation is to use the same manner through which you managed to enter in the first place!

With the power of dramatic and HAM you shall restore your friend back to normal and prevent anyone from stopping you from doing that cause they’ll hopefully be too distracted by your cuteness!

Though the appearance of two Cirno’s is distracting, you shall be distracting…even more?

“Behold!” you shout, immediately making the Hakurei turn around and face your way with an annoyed expression while no longer focusing on the Other Fairy in front of her which means you now have to worry about her shooting an orb or needle at you if you try something…sneaky. Not thinking that well about doing some shady stuff it also gets the attention of everyone else, making you….

The spot-light! Though you could have chosen a sneakier way, now you can still pursue with your plan as it is now the only option to take. With another deep breath, you repeat the line. “Behold!”

“Behold what?” The Hakurei says as she crosses her arms displeased. “If you’re about to do something stupid, which I can SEE in your eyes. Then don’t bother.” That harsh sentiment however is not shared with the Other Cirno who just gives you an thumbs-up and pulls a tongue at the Miko’s back.

The Cirno you’re on doesn’t say anything because they can’t and Meiling just tries to pull a neutral face.

Though in hindsight, their reactions to the first line don’t matter at all.

Because who cares about them right now? You've already made a decision!

You should simply go all the way and then pull the crown without caring about how they’ll perceive it.

So, you will right now!

“Behold!” you say for the third time, putting a hand towards both Cirno’s in their glory. “Before and behind, two bearing a friend’s visage.” You see everyone visibly cringe at your weird speech, but you won’t let that stop you and continue by putting one arm over your head to show surprise. “Bewilderment I bare!” then put your remaining one against your chest, as if it hurts. “Betwixt a lie, a never fallen friend, and a fallen friend.” You keep the pose and draw a harsh breath. “Both represent the worst and best of fate!” you concentrate some of your power within while pretending to try and clumsily draw some tears. “Bemused I am…. yet, bold I shall be!” and you unleash it now!

The darkness that is, the moment you end the line the entire surroundings turn pitch black, and you jump backwards to avoid whatever projectile or attack may come to disturb you. And come it does! For a sharp pain rises within your legs and stomachs as a few needles pierce it, yet it is not enough for mid-flip you land back on the ground, back at the position you were in earlier except crouched to the ground as you start pulling on the crown with all your strength. “Be broken binding, for I desire it! For a friend I AAAAAAAAAAAAAAACT!!!” and pull on it you do, with such strength that one can FINALLY feel it budge as whatever anchors it has within your friend’s head slowly rise to the surface, like a fish hooked on a rod, it’s removal is now inevitable, all you need to do is not get stoppe-OUGH!

“STOP BEING STUPID!” which is a harder endeavour than it looks like, as though neither the Hakurei nor Meiling have gone to attack you more, it does not prevent the Other-Cirno from shooting a bunch of bullets hazard around in the pitch-black area. Some of which happen to hit their mark. “Don’t do it, that will only bring bad things! Think Rum, Think! Are you one-hundred percent Malice-free towards the thing? Do you not have the slightest resentment inside of you? The slightest sadness? I know that sounds hard to understand which it is, but if it must be removed then let someone who’s UNBIASED DO IT YOU IDIOT! This is like smashing your foot on a barely frozen river, everyone’s going to catch the zero chill if you don’t stop it now. THIS IS YOUR FINAL CHANCE, STOP BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE!” the Other-Cirno’s voice becomes slightly panicked as it says all this, as if it’s truly afraid of what you’re about to inflict as their words have said. Such an out of character move like that is…

Unnecessary! You’re going to remove that crown here and now, FOR FRIENDSHIP! AND NOT MALICE!

You know you’re in the right and with one final pull.

YOU PULL OFF THE CROWN SUCCESFULLY!

And everything around you distort as the Cirno on the floor lets out a mad cackle.
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it is probably not cirno
Time: ??? , Date: ???
Location: A fun place.


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A swirling hallway of meat and flesh greets your eyes as the new decor, the soft thumping of a heart can be heard yet where it comes from you do not know. Even so the foot-steps are no less reassuring too nor is the sweet stench enveloping the area. In a way, you wouldn't be surprised if a human went mad from seeing this but yet here you are with your own intact.

Because in a way, this place feels no different from home.

So you can't really describe it in a spooky way, because this is the normal to you.

Even if normal may mean that the place you’re in ignores all laws of physics as the only law it obeys are those of a primal creature who has taken the form of your friend before you in all her ridiculousness cuteness, as if the sight of her could still fool you…

Or at least you assume the thing is in control, despite its size and look making you think otherwise.

You don’t know why that is. Something about it just feels off, it’s three times your own size yet lacks anything else other than hands and eyes, eyes that themselves don’t really look that intelligent as much as they’re big and round in a cartoony way.

“I…” the creature speaks with a familiar voice yet seems to be struggling with just this much. “Am…” not only does it fail to be THAT intimidating, but it also fails to make a sentence in less than 30 seconds. “Ci.r.r.r..no…” that’s no longer than a simple introduction, even then they’re not looking your way nor are you sure if it’s talking to you or if it’s gone and lost its sanity.

What do you know however is that you're on your own, probably inside a weird-space that’s inside a weird-space (Weird-space-ception) and that with your luck that the whole place loops around too.

Because good things just don't happen to little cute you~

Also, again, you’re not afraid.

Just weirded out by the creepiness and super luck out of luck.

Or in other words you’re fucked, like usual and need to make a decision: LIKE USUAL!

You're totally not peeved about this, you're totally not thinking this is unfair.

Oh, and that dumb crown you pulled off is warmly sitting in your hands, like a mockery of a prize.

Despite all those factors; those little droplets off spite have yet to leave your system.

Giving you ample time to come up with a way to handle this.

But, what is that way Rumia? Can you think your way out of this? What's your next grand idea?

[ ] That thing is NOT Cirno and you should inform it of that much!
[ ] Here’s a bright idea: Just, uh walk away and hope it doesn’t see you.
[ ] Yet another idea: Try calling for help, maybe you’re not alone at all.
[ ] Finally, here’s another idea: Make your own choice as a write-in.
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[x] That thing is NOT Cirno and you should inform it of that much!

That ain't Cirno. That's just some Anon monster impersonating her.
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Well, if it isn't the consequences of our actions, we have crown now, though, so that's neat. We probably shouldn't put it on. It tempts me. Just imagine how more impactful the speeches we do can be, all we need now is a cape.

This is like the second time we've ended up in some weird void sort of situation, maybe third if we count that whole fire figuring out scenario we had, though I am pretty sure that was just a dream/hallucination.

To follow in a similar vein of those past scenarios, we can baffle the big guy with our problem-solving skills, though considering the big guy's speaking right now, it might not make much of an impact, bite it, or engage in a final fantasy battle with it.

Screw it. Let's potentially anger the giant by arguing with it. I've accepted the craziness of us ever since that piss option was able to pass, and we willingly chose to go into a toilet.

This is a fantastic story.

Do we still have the egg with us? Can we break it over the giant's head?

[x] That thing is NOT Cirno and you should inform it of that much!

Is it just me, or does the synopsis for this story: A Beginner's Guide to Napping, Sunbathing, and Slaughtering Your Prey, remind anyone else of a cat?
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And now the faker is in doubt
/forest/res/31922.html#32035" class="ref|forest|31922|32035

Yeah, the synopsis does give cat-vibes doesn't it? That was on purpose.
As for the egg, it's currently elsewhere under Reimu's care. (Which is honestly the safest place it could be at rn)
Thanks for the compliment, I'll do my best to keep this as 'Fantastic' as you just said. It means a lot.

That said, back to the story!





“No, you are NOT Cirno!” you reply firmly to the creature as that is the one thing you’re sure about. “You’ve never been her and will never be!” and go out of your way to reject IT with everything you got, you won’t be fooled by its appearance or voice, it is just another enemy to be eliminated! Another foul monster that tries to put up a friendly facade that should be exterminated!

IF you can even take it on that is, “Ah! I…am…” speaking of which the creature’s third eye is now looking your way with a sharp gaze, so now you’re under its radar. “DEFINITLY…Cirno?” which you doubt is a good thing as the very moment it speaks, your surroundings change again, or at least they are now swirling counter-clockwise. So, it can control this space with just a word.

How great...

Well, control is a big word. As the way the thing is looking at you right now doesn’t seem to imply it wants to hurt you.

As creepy as it looks, you feel absolutely zero malice from the thing to be honest.

That doesn’t stop an outburst of energy to envelop the area and blast your ass off into the distance the way a bat makes a ball hit a home-run, the force and momentum makes you unable to stop mid-air even though you’re flailing about like a bird hit by a meteor. As in trying to escape this.

Despite all that, your impromptu flight doesn’t last long as you land head-first back to where you were before, youch…which plenty of bruises on your body from the rough-landing.

Good thing you can heal though, those bruises will be gone in a minute or two!

And pain does not change your approach in any way! “Are you deaf and blind? I said you’re not Cirno! You’re too tall, way too ugly and if you looked in a mirror then you’d knew you’d never ever beat the original! You’re nothing more than someone’s puppet! A useless existence! Complete rubbish!” and you continue insulting the thing with all your vigour while you remain on your knees, that flight didn’t hurt too much but man is it making you feel dizzy…something that’s convenient for the creature because if you could get close to it now, then you’d rip the bastard apart limb from li-

Somehow, those abusive words do not make it crush you like the insect you are (yet).
Because it's very much capable of that, you have no illusions over that. You just don't care.

Instead, the faker raises one of its eyebrows as the very notion of your theory takes all its remaining brain-cells to grind together before it can even understand the concept. “How…do…. you…know…?” and it doubts your doubt as you're doubting it's confidence. “I…am…all...off...Me….me…know…who…I…am…best?” as if it wants you to elaborate, as if the thing actually has the ability to think.

“Because I’m her friend, d’uh.” you huff at the sight of this moron, if it can’t even understand that it’s not the real deal then oh boy are you going to NOT enjoy your stay in wherever this is…even so, “And friends are people that know each other really well, so I know her better than you ever will!”

“Fr..iend…” again, the creature considers your words. Pondering it all for a few seconds while it’s big third eye glares at you with the intensity a father would towards some boy that they consider unworthy of their daughter’s hands. “Does that…mean…we...friends?” and it asks the dumbest question one could ever provide in this situation.

[ ] No, because you’re not MY Cirno, you fricking MORON. YOU ARE FAKE!
[ ] N-…wait, is this an opportunity? Uh, yes! Yes, we are! WE ARE FRIENDS!
[ ] Fake Cirno, I am your father.
[ ] Write-in
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I like the Giygas vibes in the images. Though, thanks to a certain fangame, there is a different 2hu I tend to associate him with...
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Ah, thank you!

And who would that 2hu be? Color me curouis.
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>>32038

Ebisu Eika, thanks to the Danmakufu fangame Limbus Puellarum.
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>>32039

Oh, the one that stacks rocks right?

I would have never expected that. I'll look it up later too cause why not.
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Yeah, the one who stacks rocks... and is the spirit of a stillborn child of the goddess Izanami and "leader" of the ghosts of infants trapped in limbo at the Sanzu River, at the edge of the afterlife. You can see how this bears some similarities to the symbolism of the battle against Giygas.
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I can see that yeah, that I sure do.

Sounds kinda creepy even without the Gigyas similarities but what else is a youkai if not spooky?

Oh and one more thing: I'll just roll a die in a few hours, so if anyone wants to vote. Their time is still there.
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[x] N-…wait, is this an opportunity? Uh, yes! Yes, we are! WE ARE FRIENDS!

Well we did say we would remove the crown with the power of friendship after all. Friends don't let friends impersonate other friends and try to kill everyone.
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Great now theres a third cirno
Friends?

Did that thing just genuinely ask you if you are its friend?

What gave it the idea that you are?

What else have you been if not hostile towards it?

In what reality and in what reality could you be friends?

“N- “You scoff at the idea, if not reject it with the most vitriol you can give a person. If it wasn’t for the last-minute idea that comes to your mind. “Uh, yes, we are! Yes, we are friends!”

Because guess what?

Maybe being its friend would prevent it from trying to harm you in any possible way if not make it easier to manipulate.

The thing doesn’t look that smart after all and the way they’re talking, and twitching gives off the mannerism of a child if it wasn’t for the everything else.

So maybe, maybe it’s a powerful dumbass?

If it can’t tell what it is, then clearly, it’s an idiot!

This will be like fooling a baby that you’re it’s bud so that you can later stab it to death.

Which is fine by you, or at the least it’s okay if that dumb faker is the one being stabbed.

You don’t care much for stabbing babies, there’s no challenge behind it-and why are you thinking this?

Stabbing fantasies aside, you take a glance at the creature again and notice that it’s been staring at the sky in total silence for a few seconds now, it’s face completely obscured in the process. You’re not sure why that is and are confident that it can’t read minds because otherwise it’d have seen through you already so why isn’t it doing anything? You have half a mind to prod it now.

But there’s no need for that, for soon enough. You notice droplets of water falling beneath it. “Fri…iend……frie…end!” and though its voice is a mix between your pals and the cries of the damned, even you are not dense enough to notice that the creature is having tears of joy at the prospect of a friendship. You can imagine how much that messes up your image of it, “Little…sister…has been playing too long without me…” its voice stifled with an odd sadness sounds a lot clearer, the emotions it’s feeling doing a huge job to its brain-juices or so you assume.

“Middle Sister….is dead….and Big sister is too busy…. nobody’s been visiting me…. for long…long…time. Why? I…don’t know. Have important job here too, am core of this place…. drain energy of prisoners….and make toys with it….is important job, allows incident to prosper in first place. Life of toys root inside me…and sprouts…outside…why I’m doing this I don’t remember. Is it good thing? Is it bad thing? Doesn’t matter.” And now it speaks clearly, their face now firm with determination.

“Because sisters need me! They called me when no one else did! I’m not alone anymore! I’m useful and needed! I’m allowed to stay here! Stay…here…” it lets out a demonic chuckle at the last words.

“As if I can leave…I AM this place, tower, stairs, cannon, everything inside here IS me. Part of my body, crown too is part of me, lets person control this place but without…I am free to do what I want now. Nobody can stop me now! If nobody will come visit, then I will visit everybody! I will have fun outside here!!!”

The surroundings distort again after that declaration, and it takes your everything to not keep your gaze on them or else you might start to feel dizzy if not sick on how bizarre this place is.

That all said, you have only thing to say to this new declaration.

Oh, shit.

Let me rephrase that.

Oh, shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.

Man, that word is kind of satisfying to say now that you think of it. But now’s not the time to be distracted!

Because if that thing’s self-pity party is true, then you’ve found the source of the Anon Objects.

And are most likely right under the whole palacy bit like where that factory bit led to?

Something like that. You’re no cartographer but if you had to describe this room, then it would be the boss room.

And you’ve somehow managed to make this thing cry because it thinks it has a friend now?

Honestly, you’ve got no idea what to make of that. But do know what you want to say. “Hey, bud! IF you’re the one making toys. Then could you unmake them? I mean like, is there a cure for the stuff?” and by that you mean asking the culprit if there’s a way to undo the effects even if now is not the time for asking such a thing. It’s not like you’re going to have a better idea of when to ask anyway.

“But...who is me?” Great, it’s ignoring you in favour of melodrama. “Don’t remember, only remember sisters and orders. Told me I was Cirno and Cirno do this. Yet friend says opposite…and friends are people that know people well, so who’s to say friend not wrong? What is true? What is fake? What is I? If I’m the fake, then who’s the real? If I’m the real, then who’s the fake…”

…Okay, so…did you give it an identity breakdown? Cause it looks like you gave it one.

Not that you feel responsible about that in any way, if anything that’s one less threat to worry abo-

You don’t even finish that sentence, as one moment you’re just standing there taking a glance at the crown and the next you’re being lifted into the air by an invisible force and forced to make eye-contact with your eldritch pal. “YOU! You, you, you, you! You are friend, you…know! Who am I! Tell me who is me! Tell me who is me NOW! Give me truth or I get angry! Talk! Talk! Talk! TALK!” and that’s kind of a bad situation, but if you look at the positive: it didn’t have the brain to take back the crown.

Or at least it hasn’t do so yet as the thing is still within grasp of your right-hand.

Though…

Does having it right now really change anything? It’s not like you can put it on while you’re right in front of it and even if you had the guts to do so your own body feels like it’s being forcefully put inside a small body-sized box that’s keeping you in the air.

Speaking of air, there’s none in it!

Or at least not a lot, as you’re already very uncomfortable and feeling very dizzy.

So, either you’re starting to slowly choke inside a tiny man-sized space or the mere voracious look that the thing in front of you is giving you as it demands answers is far more menacing than you actually think it is.

Casual danger dialog done that doesn’t change the fact you’re going to need to give an abomination that looks like Cirno answers about its identity that will satisfy it.

Or else it’ll probably do things to you better left unmentioned, or maybe it’ll let you go? You don’t know…

Do you want to take the gamble though?

“Wow, you sure fucked up. Bud.” Too bad that decision won’t be yours, for another familiar voice speaks to you and the moment you look at them, you start doubting your sanity.

For it is another goddamn Cirno!
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“Great eyes you’ve got there. But that’s also wrong!” The…uh, one Cirno, two Cirno, the third Cirno speaks up as they waggle one finger all adventure like at you. “I’m not only Cirno, but I’m also…you know what, why not show off?”

Before you can even register how they do it, their form changes to a perfect match of Meiling’s. “Meiling!” then Cirno, “Cirno!” and finally the Hakurei. “Reimu! And everything else that has a form, including you!” with a clap it stops with an end-result of having everyone’s traits, with Meiling’s red hair, the face of the Hakurei and her ribbon, the feet, and wings of Cirno and ending it all with just your clothes as if to say that’s the only noticeable thing about or maybe you’re just sensitive.

“Tadah! Do you like what you see? Cause I can take many other forms if not~” the new creature ends their introduction with a cutesy pose and a wink at you, as if they’re some quirky maiden and totally not ignoring the fact that it’s disturbing a quite intense scene already.

“Yes, yes! I like what I see! So, hurry up and help me!” though you don’t care about the interruption, you fake compliment it and genuinely hope that they’re here to stop you from meeting your demise.

“Oh, will that be your first wish?” the creature puts both her hands under her chin and looks at you appraisingly, it’s such an unnecessary move to look cute and you don’t really get what she meant by wish but you just nod yes anyway because not being in danger is totally worth it.

“Okieday!” she replies with a thumbs-up and then moves towards the Fake Cirno, before casually giving it a small kick. “Hey, sis! What’s the big idea here? Don’t you know not to mess with guests?”

This gets the creature’s attention (and naturally your own), it doesn’t look too pleased by the action. “…Is my friend…means I can do whatever I want to her, and she’d forgive me…. stay out of thi- “

“IS that a way to talk to your elders?” even so, the other girl doesn’t even let the concept of refusal leave the fake Cirno’s mouth, instead she floats up towards her and gives her a healthy slap on the cheek, with enough force that it becomes red. Casually making a fool out of it. “Remember there’s a hierarchy dear sister and that just because you’re a creepazoid. That doesn’t mean you get to defy me. Do, you, UNDERSTAND?” additionally the shock makes it drop you but what’s more noticeable is the insane amount of pressure you can feel in their smile as they glare down their ‘younger’ sister?

Of course, there’s no way this won’t turn violent. As the fake Cirno’s eyes turn into a black chasm filled with liquid hatred, the surroundings flare up and their voice becomes legion. “You shouldn’t have done that…you shouldn’t have done that! You shouldn’t have done tha-”

They just get slapped again, twice as hard if the way they flinch says anything. “Shut up, don’t defy your big sister. Don’t get overconfident because you’re an important key in this, I can replace you.” But the voice behind the slapper is no less jovial if not cheery, as if they’re both just being silly billies.

Still the threat of being ‘replaced’ is enough to make the fake Cirno stop their whole intimidating thing and the surroundings return to their normal spookiness as they look at the ground with fear and tears in their eyes. As if to acknowledge that the other girl is superior to them in every way.

Is that the situation? Cause again, you’re not sure what to make of this.

One moment you’re about to be tortured for info because you’re a ‘friend’ and the next, some random ass saves your butt.

Course that means you’re now in company of not one, but two people responsible for this incident.

You’d praise yourself for finally getting here but that doesn’t change the fact that you’re in the company of two bad gals who are far more powerful than you and could kill you on a whim….


“Anyway, you all-right Rum?” the stronger of the two culprits casually walks towards your prone form. Tending a hand towards you as if they want to help you get up. “Cause I’m happy to see you~”

“What?” you can’t help but blurt out dumbly, completely shocked at the casual attitude she’s showing and even more at how she knows your name. “How do you know who I am?”

“That’ll come in time, mainly the time it takes for you to get your face off the ground.” She replies and is still tending her hand, as if she doesn’t know that you would gladly rip it out of her flesh….

Even so, you don’t. Not because you’re some little coward but because right now, these two are proving themselves to be quite the information sources. Like no joke, you haven’t said anything special and yet here you are learning more by every word that comes out of their dumb mouths.
And that information is information that you can totally snitch about later! With that idea in mind, you get up by yourself, dust yourself off and do your best to give the girl the most stoic look you have. “Okay, there! I’m off the ground, so how about you tell me how you know my name now?”

“No problemo, Rumino~” again, the girl acts silly for no reason. “But first…”
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And again the faker is being weird
“Why don’t you go and make your other two wishes first?” she says while casually grabbing one of your arms and giving you a look that makes her eyes somehow super cartoony, but more importantly she is grabbing onto you without your permission and there’s no way you’ll allow that!

SO…you gently push her back. That may sound anti-climactic, but it honestly takes every fibre of self-control and ‘it’s for a greater purpose’ kind of reasoning for you to not bite her face off. “You’re too close, also what do you mean by wishes?” so to distract yourself, you ask that question.

She doesn’t mind being pushed back, simply pouting a bit for no reason then at once jumping up the moment you asked her that. “Oh, that’s quite simple! Since your actions have been very helpful to us and you’ve also just freed my little sister here. You’re getting three wishes as a token of my gratitude. Sadly, you’ve used one for me to save your life, so you’ve got two more remaining.”

None of that makes sense to you, “I want a hundred more wishes and absolute omnipotence.” naturally you then reply with the most obvious sarcasm-voice that you can manage towards it as there's no way you'd just trust some random person.

“Ah, so you’re a clever one!” the girl giggles mischievously, as if she expected that. “Very clever indeed, though I didn’t think it necessary I shall clear up a couple of things…” she casually drops her index finger at your chest. “One: I’m offering these wishes only in gratitude for your actions, I’m in no way bound or compelled to fulfil them. I’m doing this out of generosity after all.” Then when you move your hand to grab her finger, she grabs your arm instead and pulls you closer with a strength superior to your own, then whispers in your ear with the gentlest yet menacing tone you’ve heard so far. “Secondly, my sister is an extremely powerful magical being who was sealed for a reason. You’ve unleashed yet another great evil unto your world. Of course, I’d have done it myself eventually, but you really sped things up hence my gratitude. Now thirdly: You youkai’s have done a great disservice to us, you can’t possibly imagine what’s going to happen as retribution but let’s just say that whatever you wish for, you’ll be at best, worm king of your fellows once we’re done with this game. So, let’s hear your two wishes again, oh clever one.”

….

[ ] She can shove her ‘wishes’ right up her a---! (You’re not taking this, fight back!)
[ ] …You hate even thinking about this, but a wish is wish. (Use your two wishes, ya baby.)
[ ] There has to be another way, think Rumia! Think! (Write-in to try something else)
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[x] I wish my friends Reimu, Cirno, and Meiling were here. And I mean the real ones, not some doppelganger. That way I can introduce them to my new friend Not-Cirno.

I think we need backup. Maybe Third-Cirno will give it to us if we seem dumb enough. Also, getting more friends to be friends with Not-Cirno might make Not-Cirno a friend for real.
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A Coronation Through Deception
Through bad fortune and good luck, we have lured out a powerful malevolent shapeshifter that is stronger and smarter than the giant we have released. In short, we are in enemy territory, alone, outnumbered, and definitely outgunned. Fugg. Thankfully, the shapeshifter seems to be in a good mood and has presumably lowered her (its?) guard.

Let's see if we can pull a fast one on her and maybe learn some things. We still have the crown used to seal the giant, a great evil, so why not another? Though, it might be inert now for all we know. It might be a fighting chance or a fool's hope. Unless I am misremembering, the Anon's items are fueled by emotion. If we can inspire in ourselves the desire to save, the opposite of spite, we could activate the crown. Now that the shapeshifter has revealed itself to be touchy-feely towards us, we could convince it to get close to us, yet we are not the most predisposed to deception; we have been known to speak our thoughts out loud, so we must cover the deception with emotion.

First, we have to ask the shapeshifter its grand plan. Villains can't resist gloating. It might further reinforce that we have accepted our defeat. Then we need to have her hug us while shapeshifting as Wriggle. Seeing Wriggle's face will make us cry and convince the shapeshifter that we seek comfort after our defeat. Then we will nail that sucker by planting the crown on her. Praying to the Meatball God to bring the Hakurei might work as a last resort if the crown plan fails. Put an enemy in front of her, and she will likely be able to flog it.

[X] Ask the shapeshifter about her grand plan.
-[X] Ask for a hug from her shapeshifted as Wriggle.
--[X] Cry, very ugly and blubbery tears, feel the desire to save a friend from cruel fate arise, remember that we set out to right the wrong of our friend dying, having her face right in front of us will help harden our resolve and sincerity.
---[X] Hug the shapeshifter, slam the crown onto her head, scream, "FRIENDSHIP!"
----[X] Pray/genuflect to the glorious Meatball God for salvation if the plan reaches this far or dies in its tracks.

This plan can die early if the shapeshifter can parse our emotions and intent very well; moreover, this plan does not account for the giantess that remains afterward. Finally, this plan also hinges on a potential misunderstanding of our crown, which we will have conspicuously in our hands unless it is cloaked in darkness or hidden in some manner.

I really hope the meatball god can hear our prayer if the plan goes awry. Or that someone else can devise a plan that does not rely on this many moving parts. Here's a potential thought, the relationship between the giant and the shapeshifter does not seem the most stable. We might be able to use that.
>Still the threat of being ‘replaced’ is enough to make the fake Cirno stop their whole intimidating thing and the surroundings return to their normal spookiness as they look at the ground with fear and tears in their eyes. As if to acknowledge that the other girl is superior to them in every way.
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My, my, that's some enthouisaism.

I'd love to add in my own thoughts at both votes but I can't for once sadly.

Instead have the thing that's used when the Tie Breaker Dojo can't be used either.

Communicator Entertainment Program Ruukoto:

"ConAgent 6.9 (Six-point-nine)" Episode 5! <In the previous episode....> 6.9, the ConAgent has infiltrated the junk factory to uncover the secrets of that catalogue of conspiracy, J.O.E. Corporation. With Kaxen now as her guide, she heads for the secret hub of the factory to figure out the truth! Hurry, Six-point-Nine!

*****

Kagen: This is it. This is the room that the suits go into.

69: Let's go.

420: Be careful, Six.

Rattle.

Kayen: What is this place....?

69: Looks like a product development lab....

Katen: Look at all these plans.... 'On the Road Food Processor,' 'Rover's First Watch'.... And 'Blackout Camera,' 'Morning After Hanger'....

69: Jeez. True heirs to J.O.E.'s tradition of junk.

420: But Six, there's nothing new here that J.O.E. executives would get excited about....

69: That's true.

Kaqen: Look, Six-point-nine, 'D-People-E-O, Fine Humanoid Robot for the Home.'

69: Really? Sounds pretty decent.

Kanen: Decent, my foot. Humanoid robot? How did they develop that kind of technology....

69: Don’t believe that stuff. It's one of their products. It has to be a fake.

420: Not necessarily, Six.

69: What are you getting at, 420?

420: What if they were selling garbage products to people to raise research funds for that humanoid robot?

69: How can that....

Kacen: And look at this, Six-point-nine. D-People-E-O has no down payment and a monthly price of $9.75 for 36 months!

420: It's cheaper than Mrs. Huggy Froggy Body Pillow!

69: ....$9.75 a month is just three cups of double mochas....

420: Six, what do you think?

69: Even if the humanoid robot is for real, it's too affordable for a J.O.E. deal. There's something behind this. But what.....

420: Six, can it be a weapon of destruction?

69: What....!?

420: It looks like that isn't just another junk factory.

69: No. And the fact that there are plans here means they could be making D-People-E-O somewhere on the premises. Or that they're already rolling off the assembly line....

420: Can you find out?

69: Affirmative. Let's go, Kaz.

Kaz: Wait a sec, I'm not one of you!

69: I love you, Kas. Always have.

Kasen: .... What? (There’s a look of disgust on their face)

69: (Cocky grin implying sarcasm) Love conquers all, right Kad?

Kaden: (looks disgusted still) Well, ah, that's not completely wrong, but....

69:Okay, let's go, Kav!

Kalen:Ah....all right.

69:.....

69:I said let's go!

Kaken: O....OK....

69: Um!?

Kazen: What's going on?

69: It won't open. The door won't open!

Karen: You mean -- we're trapped in here!?

*****

Ruukoto: To be continued

That distraction given, I'll give this until Wednesday for the tie to be broken. (Cause this is important)

If not it'll be dice time!

I really hope that won't be the case though, cause I've got big stuff ready.
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> I wish my friends Reimu, Cirno, and Meiling were here. And I mean the real ones, not some doppelganger. That way I can introduce them to my new friend Not-Cirno.

Okay, quick recollection: Some ‘older sister’ appeared out of nowhere, threatened your about to be way out of here and immediately afterwards demands you give it wishes for reasons it refuses to divulge. Even though it clearly holds a level of like for you?

So the question is…

Is she in a good mood or just toying with you before the kill?

You don’t know but are fully aware that the slightest mistake could result in a very painful death. In fact, it’d be such a terrible fate that you cannot help but bless the waves of calmness that’s over you right now, because otherwise…

You’d have attacked her by now, if not insulted her.

Only to find out that she can manipulate you like a puppy, commands you to stab yourself ten times in the eyes and then you bleed to death, the end.

Well, you don’t know if she can do that.

But the possibility is there, so just this once it’s better to regret not doing something than regret doing it and finding out what happens afterwards.

That thought firmly etched into your mind, you make your first wish as a test and genuine hope for back-up, “I wish my friends, Reimu, Cirno-yada yada-“you know the words, now all you can do is keep your hands tight and hope that she’s too cocky to refuse such a blatantly bad wish to fulfil.

“No, can do!” But she doesn’t, she refuses the wish with a smile on her face and her finger oh so waggly again. “I’m afraid I wasn’t born ten days ago, unlike someone else in the room.” You’re not sure if that was a jab or a reference to someone else, even so she continues while some sort of transformation occurs on her. “But no need to worry, for if you’re that lonely…” she traces off.

Just so she can transform into a copy of you, “Then you have a friend in me! We’re best friends even!” yet the form itself is blatantly wrong, your skin is the wrong colour, her hair is the wrong colour and she’s still got the size of Meiling just so she can look down on you as a bonus to it.


“…” And though you’d love to say this doesn’t affect you. Seeing something that looks like your body being played with, if not fondled on purpose just to piss you off….is not a FUN experience.

Great, now you captain obvious’d yourself! “Mhm? What’s wrong? You sure are quiet~” though even your attempt at not reacting to her nonsense is enough to increase the annoying’s creature fake smile into an overconfident smirk. “Relax, Rum. I’m only joking here! Isn’t that what friends doooo?” and she continues to fan the flames, by pretending you two know each other and by making light of you.

Despite those factors, you give nothing more than your stoic look. You’ve already realized that you can’t beat her up in a straight up fight, so the best you can do is NOT give her the satisfaction of getting into your head. “So, if you don’t do that wish, can I try again with another one?” to that purpose you change the subject and try to in a way, refund the wish that she refused to grant.

As if feeling left out, the Not-Cirno starts to speak, “What…. are…you…all doing?” she doesn’t seem to realize that there’s a tension between you two that’s provoking a staring contest right now.

“Sh-Just be quiet for a moment, sis. The grown-ups are talking.” The older sister just ignores her and if the way the other girl just flinched and does shut up. May or not have implied that as a direct order, “Anyway, you said something about trying a wish again Rum? Sure, you can do that.” And now that the staring contest is over, she quickly gives you permission to wish again, if only to…

You don’t know she’s doing anything but anyway, “Ahem…. I wish for…” it’s wishing time!

> Ask the shapeshifter about her grand plan.

“For you tell me about your grand plan and to spare no detail!” a great wish if you say so yourself, for now she’s going to tell absolutely everything there is to know about her evil plan and you’ll-

“Nah, that feels like a hassle.” With a shrug and a lazy moan, the girl calmly refuses your request, as if you just asked her to move a bunch of heavy stuff instead of just saying a few words. “Besides, what fun is there in an evil plan that’s already told? Don’t you know that announcing one’s plan is a good way to make fate laugh? Even worse, if it’s prevented after being told then all the hype was for nothing and if the plan goes along anyway then it was all a spoiler. You just don’t win when you reveal plans that concern the future, Rum. So, I’m afraid I’m going to have to say no to that too.”

Oh, come on! Is this a joke! Is this THE joke?! That she’s going to make you wish for a bunch of stuff that she never intends to grant you anyway?

What a dirty person!

What an absolute ass!

What a dirty ass-person!

“Though…” she speaks up before you can protest or even give a sarcastic remark, putting a finger to seal your mouth as an unnecessary gesture. “I guess I can tell you about things that have happened…IN THE PAST, shocker I know! But worst-case-”

“I’d just learn things I already knew.” You reply, ignoring once again the urge to attack and just move the finger away from you. Oh, maybe you’ve failed to mention but the moment she went to transform she backed off a few steps from you but now she’s back to the awkward proximity. That aside, “Tell me anyway, maybe it’ll be a big reveal about stuff I don’t know, shocker I know!”

She ignores your repetition of her last sentence and simply nods, as if amazed. Then lets out a small clap accompanied by a just as big creepy giggle. “You sure are a smart cookie, Rum. But okay, if you want to know about the things, I have DONE instead of what I’m about to DO, then sure, allow me…”

She takes a deep breath, just for emphasis. “TO MONOLOGUE!”

Oh, boy. You just wait for her to start, knowing deep down that this is going to be a pain.
And off she goes, starting it all with an overly dramatic hand-gesture towards the sky even though there’s nothing to be seen in the air, “Let’s go back to eleven years in the past, 2006 is what the year would be. It was a wonderful time where people still actually fought over which consoles were better and when unregistered hypercam was on the top of everyone’s bumblepuck’s YouTube vide- “

She says a bunch of things that other would probably understand but to you may as well be another language, either way she seems to be talking about how the past was better? “2006 is also the year when Nintendo dropped the Wii console which allowed everyone to channel their inner Darth Maul to full effect with its high-tech motion controls…. hehe.”

But how is this relevant?

To your own regret, you do not interrupt her and continue listening to her nonsense, most of it consists of praising this ‘console’ non-stop as if it was her own personal holy grail. “The Wii was Nintendo’s best-selling console and as of to-date, the fourth best-selling console in the world of all time!” and finally, with a sparkle in her eyes she seems done with that subject. Only for her eyes to harden and for her to once again dramatically point…at the ground this time, “BUT THEN, came 2012, and this is the year that they completely shat the bed, I don’t know how to describe but it was like if you had a bicycle that could fly into the sky when you pedal hard enough but in your cockiness you go so fast and so bad that inevitably you get hit by an air-plane the same way some fly is crushed between one’s mother giraffe crazy thighs. It was truly something you had to experience but surely you can relate to this as something similar has happened to you right?” she waits for an answer.

Again, how is this relevant? “No…but continue.” Even so, you just WAIT yet again. Knowing that every second given to you is a second in which she could actually release useful info… maybe.

“Anyway, the most terrible abomination made by them is known as the Wii-U.” She declares with venom towards the name, as if this ‘console’ has killed her very own mother, “Naturally it received unparalleled hatred for it’s lack of power, it’s battery life being abysmal and it wasn’t exactly friendly to third-party releases…” again, she takes a moment to catch her breathe and then rambles on, “Though…out of the three games that did come out, I believe only one of them was truly worth something, yes, it was a hidden master-piece that showed all the good elements out of the console experience and that game was…” dramatic pause, “Zombi-U!”

Okay, you know what? Screw being polite, it’s clear now that if you give her too much leeway then she’s just going to troll every single penny out of you that she can take and enough is enough! “I don’t think this is important in any wa- “

“GREAT NAME-CHOICE ASIDE!” But she unashamedly just shouts over you the moment you try to talk, as if she’s obsessed with what she’s about to talk about. “Zombi-U is a survival horror first-person shooter that’s developed by Ubisoft. That’s a company known for making games that are filled to the brim with glitches just so you know but anyway, the game takes place in a post-apocalyptic Britain, which honestly doesn’t make a real difference if you’ve seen the place but ahem, it’s a game where you have to survive an average Monday-morning in London against an never-ending horde of panzer house residents who refuse to brush their teeth if their toothpaste is not of the specific tea-flavour that they so adore, nor do they want to pay their council taxes. All the while you also have to deal with the neighbour’s noise complaints and the local constabulary that are there to make sure that you’ve paid your telly license.” And she rambles on, and on, and on….

Oh god, she’s just going to keep talking nonsense no matter what you’re about to say or do now is she?

In that case, aren’t you better off doing something else with the time you’ve been given?


[ ] Slap the ‘quirky’ broad, throw caution to the wind and MAKE her talk about something that make sense. She’s done nothing but waste your time and annoy you and you’re about to be LIVID.
[ ] Use the opportunity and hope she doesn’t notice you doing something else. [Write-in]. Though if she does notice, keep in mind that things may about to get real, real, super bad….is it worth the risk?
[ ] She’s annoying you on purpose, keep waiting till she tires herself out and maybe then she’ll start making sense. But until then you’re not giving her any sort of satisfaction by filling her expectation.

/forest/res/31922.html#32048" class="ref|forest|31922|32048

Your other actions will be continued after this vote, just so you know that your big write-in was not for nothing.
This is more a case off, do you dare try to use this opportunity or not? kind of moment in the middle of things.

I'll just pick the safest 'wait' option once I'm free tommorow so you have until then.
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Fortune favors the bold!
[®] Discreetly use the shadows only visible to the Giant to make a shadow play of figures resembling us, aiding her in teaching a lesson to the Shapeshifter, and an afterward party scene where new friends surround the Giant, laughing and showing utmost admiration!

>Oh god, she’s just going to keep talking nonsense no matter what you’re about to say or do now is she?
So, this is how it feels to be on the other end. No wonder Dai decided to drop kick us off some stairs. Son of a gun even took our style.

> “Sh-Just be quiet for a moment, sis. The grown-ups are talking.” The older sister just ignores her and if the way the other girl just flinched and does shut up. May or not have implied that as a direct order
I do believe that the Giant might even be more pitiable than us. We who blame ourselves for our friend’s death, who has voices in our head that suggest us to follow our desires, and who is dying of an incurable disease. However, this Giant is an individual who, while not so bright and trying to harm us, it is Gensokoyo violence is a form of greeting basically, is told outright by an older sister that they are replaceable, created silent through physical violence, and uncertain about who they are. Yet, we may be able to capitalize on that emotional vulnerability to seize a chance of victory or inaction from the Giant.

If we can get out of this using the Giant’s help, we got to get her some good friends and help her find a name for herself.

This introspection might also make the guilt and desire to save stronger as the Giant is something tangible for us to focus on.

We can hide the arm gestures needed to activate the shadows by just covering our faces in exasperation; we can peek through the fingers to see if required.
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> [®] Discreetly use the shadows only visible to the Giant to make a shadow play of figures resembling us, aiding her in teaching a lesson to the Shapeshifter, and an afterward party scene where new friends surround the Giant, laughing and showing utmost admiration!

You know this would be the part where you’d respond with sarcasm to such an idea, like by saying something along the lines ‘Oh yes, let’s try to do something sneaky while the person is right in front of you, wait, oh wait, even better! Let’s try to convince their ‘sister’ that they should revolt against their family member, as if such an idea could totally not backfire because the lil sis is a doormat.’

Except you don’t, and that’s only because of one reason: That it might be possible.

Now hold on, you’re not saying that the plan would have a hundred percent success chance but if you’re careful and uh, try to be ULTRA SNEAKY then maybe it could work, just uh, don’t think of the ways this can suck?

And stay positive! Because as ‘in style’ the sadness train used to be, that chapter is gone now.

It was a shameful chapter, one you'll never mention again, so shut up and focus.

Now that you're focusing, you realize that if you try your sneaky thing while she’s looking at you then she’ll obviously notice.

So, you’ve got to also do it in a way that she won’t notice or you'll fail again.

But even then, fail to keep up a poker face and she’ll notice it anyway because you wear your heart on a sleeve. So, the best you can do is try to make sure your dead fisheyes look doesn’t budge the tiniest muscle.

But even then, you still have to worry ab…

Okay, never mind. That’s exactly the opposite of not thinking of ways this can suck. You’re stalling for time rather than acting so let’s try that again. There’s no need to be scared after all!

Aside from the fact that you’re all alone on a hostile plane and completely lost on what to-

Ahem, keep everything in check, use the experience you’ve obtained in this adventure and show them once and for all that the darkness has proficiency in the art of lies!

FIGHT RUMIA FIGHT!

Looks like your luck hasn’t backfired yet as the whole time it took you to get motivated the strange girl is still babbling her own nonsense, not even looking at you as even though she refused to tell you the big evil plan she must still be in love with her own voice, and you should be using that.

So, you do, after having 500 words of self-hyping. You finally take the sneakiest of actions!

You do not gather your energy, for the odds of her being sensitive to the changes in power levels like this is some battle show is not impossible with your recent luck.

Instead, you keep it all at a minimum, visualizing yourself instead like a faucet who’s trying hard, and I mean really hard to only let out a single drop of your sneaky monkey business.

Like a monkey who’s preparing a sneaky monkey business because monkeys are sneaky. You know they’re sneaky because you’ve never seen any of them outside of pictures.

And though some may ask for evidence, you just know they are real.

Monkey business aside, your own shadow…wait, no that’s too obvious. You take a glance towards Not-Cirno again and notice that she’s giving you a glance as well, so your eyes meet. “Ah!” realizing that she’s been staring at you with a confused expression she now looks down in embarrassment, her cheeks burning a tiny shade of red and why the hell does she look so much like Cirno, it’s creeping you out, it’s creeping you out and how dare it even try to look c-IT HAS A SHADOW!

Yeah, it does have one. Even though there’s no real bright light in the room, you can see a small shadow right underneath her, so that’s a subtler way to communicate with her.

Not worrying about whether or not you can even manipulate someone else’s shadow, you just focus the tiniest bit of energy and visualize the shape you want the darkness to take…and move it does. The shadows beneath take the form of figures resembling her and you, the others and overall, the message you wanted to give out with the occasional change in scenery in it.

Something that she easily notices and immediately does her best on to try and decipher…before glancing back at you.

With a look of pure misery, ‘I can’t do that.’ is what her eyes are saying, emphasis on can’t as though the offer is very, very tempting. Yet whatever feelings or obligations she has, 'I’m so sorry, I’d love friends, but family goes first...Sister goes first, sure she’s mean sometimes but deep down she’s a good girl! I know...that she loves me. S-she just shows it in an odd way... are things you could imagine her saying out loud if she didn’t have the understanding that this is a discrete message and so doesn’t go out of her way to snitch you out towards the person, she’s most loyal towards.

Loyalty that’s probably undeserved too, let’s not kid ourselves here. It’s clear to you now that although her form is disgusting and revolting to the eye, the inside of her…. COULD be that of a naïve and pitiful girl who’s got no idea about what they’re involved in and other dramatic nonsense, bah.

But fine, don’t think this means that you’re a sappy one. But you’re going to defeat this shapeshifter and save everyone, not only the people you know but all those this witch is likely abusing! ‘If you’re not going to help, then give me a fair chance, let me fight her one on one and don’t interfere plz’ is the message you sent back, a message to which she stays silent…except for a tiny nod.

Are you done trying to be sneaky?” the person who looks like you but isn’t you says with a smile that shows all her shark-like teeth while ignoring personal space rules again. “Cause honestly, I think that’s a very rude gesture you’re doing. It’s something only a naughty girl would do and that’s no good~” she continues with mirth before poking you on the nose and waiting for a response.

“Well, you’re naughtier.” You reply lamely, while refusing to be intimidated or take a step back as it’s clear now that she’d just get into your face again if you did. “Getting all close to me, acting all friendly as if you know me and worst of all, creating the most unfun incident ever….”

“Guilty as charged~” she responds again, with absolutely zero denial towards her deeds, then calmly grabs one of your shoulders and stares into your eyes with the same look as usual. Before pulling her tongue at you like a cheeky kid, “Though, Rum, rum. You oh so silly Rum, do you even know the cir- “

“You’re using a bunch of anon-objects to cause a distraction because you’re either stalling for time or just waiting for some hero to show up so you can increase the odds and tension of the ‘Game’.” You cut her off, knowing enough by now that even you could make a guess towards the ‘dynamic’ of a villainous plan, in fact it’s even easier seeing how you’ve had many fantasies about them. “Am I wrong?” and despite it not being a wise choice, you let out a single snort at her surprised silence.

A silence that’s quickly replaced by sounds of clapping. “Congratulations!” she responds joyfully with the body of wriggle, “Congratulations!” she says this time with that of Marisa’s, “Congratulations!” she repeats her statement with a different body each time, yet it’s not to unnerve you. The way she talks and moves, and beams shows an outright happiness at the revelation that you know this much.

A happiness that she’s willing to share with you, through a non-consensual hug. “Oh, Rumia!” and even less consensual pats on your head while rubbing her cheeks against you like you’re the cutest alive or some teddy bear for her own personal comfort. “Oh, you’re such a good girl! Oh, you’re such a smart girl! Every single second with you has truly been a joy so far, frankly you’re my best girl!” and though you’ve got no idea what a ‘best girl’ is, you don’t think you’d want to know but that aside…

You see another opportunity here, the way she’s holding you is keeping your right arm free, which just happens to be the hand holding the crown. And the way she’s having a super disgustful one-sided joy rush is what you believe to be her at her most vulnerable moment right now…

Huh, you didn’t even need to use a third ‘wish’.

[ ] Take the opportunity, try to put that crown on her head now!

[ ] Not yet, wish your last wish while keeping the hug going.

“So, what does it all mean then?” The girl hugging you suddenly speaks up while looking you in the eyes with that of the Hakurei’s, the smile on her face feeling so out of place on the shrine maiden.

Not that the Hakurei has never smiled, but she’s never shown you such a friend-filled one.

And for her to just take a sight like that and make it her own. It just feels perverse.

“Excuse me?” that combined with her weird question puts a delay on your attack as you foolishly…

Give her an excuse to continue talking, “What did you learn today? What’s the moral of this adventure?” she repeats the question with an odd intensity, as if she wants a genuine answer. ‘

But you’ve yet to catch on to that, instead responding with a flustered and confused and frankly peeved, “L-learned? What-the, not to trust anybody? This whole thing su- “but you’re interrupted.

Because that’s not the right answer, “No, no, no. That’s not the-Rumia, Rumia, bud.” Motioning for you to shut up, the girl again WITHOUT consent strokes your cheek. “Rumia, precious, little, Rumia. You need to understand that there’s a reason for everything, so what did you learn today? What grand character development have you gone through this fine adventure? What did you learn?”

You’ve learned that the moment you anyone the chance, they’re going to speak nonsense! Is what you would have liked to say at that moment, instead you went, “Wha? What? Wha-wait, I-ah, ha, wait do you want a serious answer?” all dumb like as you almost laughed out of sheer confusion.

“What did you learn?” she repeats again, with that dumb smile and finally, you got enough.

“NOTHING!” you bellow half-shout and laugh, “Th-this is not a learning experience! This was a torture fest, some cruel joke of a story that had no reason to-STOP SAYING no over and over!” and you grow more heated as every answer you give is met a with a teasing no, nope, no luck and such as if she’s some grand teacher and you some ignorant brat. Like any of this had actual meaning…

“Let’s try again.” The Fake-Reimu cups her hands together before pointing one at her forehead to indicate you should think more carefully. “IF you had to think of something that you had learned today, some grand lesson that you’d forever remember if you live though this, what would it be?”

“I…I’d think you’re just messing with me; you’re really trying to build up over something that you haven’t seen now, have you? Cause I can tell you that NOTHING meaningful happened over- “

“Just give an answer already, Rum. It’s not that haaaaaaaaaaaaard.” She ignores your protest again. “Besides you’re wrong about the first part, we’ve been watching you plenty, today and oh wait…”

“What?” you’re pretty sure she said something she shouldn’t have there. Or no, the way she’s holding her hand over her mouth in fake-shock shows she clearly said it on purpose, she’s riling you up and playing your emotions like they’re a toy “What did you mean by that?!” and it’s working.

“Nothing~” As if it’s nothing! You promptly said back, too infuriated to realize that’s a bad idea. But as if by divine providence, the girl just covers her ears and looks at you with fake pitifulness, “Ow, ow, don’t scream so loudly Rum, don’t you know a girl’s ears are very sensitive? You’re so mean…” you just don’t respond to that and wait for her to continue, which she eventually does by lying on the floor and grabbing onto your leg all dramatically as if the shock exhausted her, “And here I was going to tell you everything…but now I don’t have the strength to say more than a word!” she says by saying more than a word, “Except if….If you were to tell me the moral of this story?” and concludes it all with giving you the most blatant half-assed puppy-eyes in the world.

“Y-you…” Are you enjoying this? Are you going out of your way to mentally mess with me? Don’t you have anything better to do like worrying about the fact that the Hakurei is here? Are many of the things you want to say to her, yet again your current stoniness makes you not do that. “I…wow, you’re really trying to force something out of nothing here aren’t yo- “

“Oh, I’m not anything. I’m just waiting for you to have the kindness to give me back my energy.” The girl once again talks over you. Clearly knowing deep inside that she’s got all the control here….

Ugh, fine. You take in a deep breath…
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“The moral is that there is none, some things just happen because strong people see it as a game and the weaklings have no choice but to try and make the best of what they can’t change.” You respond with yet the most cynical yet also the most genuine answer you can think off.

It’s not something you want to personally believe in but the way that everyone has been treating you as a minor distraction, some helpless lost child or an edgy nuisance really has put on the light that whatever actions you are doing won’t probably matter much to anyone but that doesn’t mean they’re useless.

If anything, as long you yourself get what you wanted out of them then the effort was worth it.

So you just have to continue, continue doing your best. That's what you personally believe in.

Such feeling gets a laugh out of the faker, who has again put on the image of you alongside weird formal clothes that really don’t make any sense but must be part of some inside joke. “That’s right, it was all a game! It’s just like your call to adventure, the fake Cirno and I just said. All of it is a game!”

You don’t even know WHO she is, but still, “So then this whole incident is nothing more than a scam? Some excuse for you guys to create some ‘hero’ that’ll look good in the middle of all this even though you were all secretly responsible for it in the first place?” you ask for a final confirmation.

“Pretty much yeah.” The girl nods while casually admitting the truth, finally ending the mystery. “Though there’s much more to that, however, why don’t you do me a favour before I continue?”

You raise an eyebrow at that, surprised at her sudden cooperation and still fully remembering how she refused to even talk about it before. So, what is it that made her change her mind?

“The answer to that is because I’m really impressed with you, for getting this far I mean. Sure, you messed up big-time at the start and genuinely were kind of like a chicken without a head for the majority of the adventure…but look at you now! You’ve come all the way here without anyone’s help! Is what I’d like to say but that’d be a lie right? You’ve received SOME help after all but in the end the one who made the decisions, the one who persevered despite all and managed to get all the way here without letting anyone else be their puppeteer was someone as small and weak as you!”

“Aw, geez. I feel so complimented.” You let out a snark for once, mostly because her constant swings are disturbing you and because you’re having trouble getting to understand if she’s a foe or not.

Surprisingly, or not surprisingly at all. She does not gut you on the spot, instead letting out a creepy giggle instead and removing some weird blue crystal out of her literal body. “Anyway, I think you should be rewarded, so I’m going to give you two choices!”

Oh, wow. You’re gonna LOVE This. “And these choices concern what?”

“Don’t talk over me.” The girl chides you with a not so threatening tone. Then points at her suspiciously clean and overly blue crystal thingy in her hands. “This right here my friend, is the one and only cure that you’ve been looking for. IF you eat this here and now then the chainsaw inside of you shall be forcefully removed and all the effects of it will be gone like water down a drain!” you don’t respond to that, not out of shock at the revelation or because you’re overjoyed but simply because you’re expecting some dumb catch. “Of course, you could also just give it to your good old Moon Doctor and hope that she can make several similar cures with this by studying it but honestly, I don’t care what you’d do with it. It’s your own little choice after all, but afterwards…” she pauses for dramatic effect and then makes her own hand fake-walk over her palm. “Little Rumia will have to go home, take care of some side-quests she hasn’t handled and bam the adventure is over! Or to be more precise the adventure will no longer concern you, either way you’d have your happy ending.”

And there you have it, it’s the generic ‘Take this small win and go home’ option, “And what’s the other choice?” such a thing is usually only given when the bad guy is in a bad spot though so…

Why should you do anything she says? Could it be that perhaps she doesn’t have as much control over the situation that you thought she has? Maybe she’s just pulling hot air on you all along.

“Or you can choose me!” The girl points at herself this time, “And by that, I mean have me reveal the truth of this whole little game. The terrible, oh so brutal, kind of truth that once you know it, you’ll be too deep in all of this for me to let you leave this place alive….so in other words I’d tell you absolutely everything but afterwards we’d need to fight and if you lose then you’re gonna die or at least you’d wish you were dead, I’m not joking on that.” She repeats the words again as if to emphasize their importance then turns to you again. Without any of the usual humour. Smile gone as well.

“So, what is it going to be Rumia?” she asks a final time as the two choices have been shown. “Also, if I were you, I’d choose fast before the old hag realizes what I’m doing and will come visit us~”.

[ ] Reimu’s already here and the truth is overrated. Just take the cure now, the other option can be forced out of her once your stronger allies are done beating the muffins out of her when they arrive.
[ ] This might be the only opportunity to get straight answers, take the chance. Besides if she’s got a cure then maybe there’s more of one, all you’d need to do is run away or fight afterwards.
[ ] Third option, challenge her to a danmaku match for both. But will she even accept?
[ ] Fourth Option, you make up your own idea. [Write-in]

If you want to contact Meatball god then vote for it here again plz, it just didn’t fit rn.
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[x] Hey, wait a minute. I already used my second wish to have you tell me the truth about what's going on, and you went on a rant about zombies and wii-us. If you are offering to tell me the truth now, that means you were lying about the zombies and wii-us before. How do I know you won't lie about the truth again?

[x] Also speaking of wishes, I still have one left. I wish that you would stop bullying my new friend Not-Cirno. Treat her with love and kindness like a real sister should.

We already wasted a wish to find out the truth, which means she owes us an explanation no matter what we pick. And even if she does tell us, she already lied about it once, so she would probably just lie again.

If we wish for her to treat her sister well, there are two outcomes. Either she grants it and starts treating Not-Cirno like a sister, which will increase our friendship with Not-Cirno because we helped her. Or she doesn't grant it and continues to treat Not-Cirno like crap, which might make Not-Cirno question who she should be loyal to. We tried to help her and her sister just demonstrated that she doesn't care about her at all. Might be time to consider switching sides.
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>[ ] Take the opportunity, try to put that crown on her head now!

If we consider the theory that emotions power the crown, our current emotional state is filled with enough spite that I would describe that the faker possibly killing us would lead to us coming back as a vengeful spirit. I have to hope that putting on the crown does not require emotions of wanting to save; considering that the crown was used to seal an anon-creature, I assume the original sealer did not quite have feelings of saving. Choosing this one also requires an element of surprise, and I think we will not be faster than her if she catches us trying to put it on her head.

Considering the faker shapeshifts, her clothes could be presumed to be a part of her body. Maybe we can use the sharp points of the crown and jam it into her torso? I do not think the faker has a fixed head position.

>[ ] Not yet, wish your last wish while keeping the hug going.

This seems to be a more cautious option, though. I wonder if this will mean that the opportunity to use the crown will slip our fingers. Yet, getting more info about this situation is undoubtedly tempting.

>[ ] Reimu’s already here and the truth is overrated. Just take the cure now, the other option can be forced out of her once your stronger allies are done beating the muffins out of her when they arrive.

I have a suspicion that if we take this option, it will be a trick and would make our situation even worse somehow. Or that the knowledge that we chose to step off the path of our own would be enough disappointment to our character arc that it would be cruel mercy from the faker to us.

However, if this is a crystal that can get rid of anon influence, could we possibly make the faker eat it? Though it did come from her body.

Also, it’s common knowledge not to eat anything produced by weird strangers, wearing the faces of the people we know, who are overly touchy.

>[ ] This might be the only opportunity to get straight answers, take the chance. Besides if she’s got a cure then maybe there’s more of one, all you’d need to do is run away or fight afterwards.

The brutal truth that comes with the caveat of us dying. Though as stated earlier, the faker is not averse to lying. But the knowledge or the assent that we accept death by knowing the truth may get her to lower her guard further.

We have been dancing on a knife’s edge for a while now.

>[ ] Third option, challenge her to a danmaku match for both. But will she even accept?

I have a feeling, considering how confident she seems that she would accept a danmaku match, it might buy us enough time for Remiu to arrive if we play it cautiously. However, we could also use it as an opportunity to fly up close and use speed to try and cram the crown into the faker.

I wonder if we can bundle this option with the second one of asking for the truth than requesting a final bout. Then, the faker might consider it our swan song.

[X] Contact Metaball God asking for advice on the crown. Then, if it is viable according to the deity, stab the bastard.
-[X] Not yet, wish your last wish while keeping the hug going.
--[X] Also speaking of wishes, I still have one left. I wish that you would stop bullying my new friend Not-Cirno. Treat her with love and kindness like a real sister should.
---[X] Slam the crown’s sharp point into the faker while she is talking about the third wish if the meatball god approves of it.
-[X] This might be the only opportunity to get straight answers, take the chance. Besides if she’s got a cure then maybe there’s more of one, all you’d need to do is run away or fight afterwards.
--[X] Third option, challenge her to a danmaku match for both. But will she even accept?

I do not think that the wish about treating not-Cirno will do much in getting her to commit any actions against the faker, but we have an assurance of non-action; she might have a change of heart later, so stocking up on more goodwill is not bad.

>A silence that’s quickly replaced by sounds of clapping. “Congratulations!” she responds joyfully with the body of wriggle, “Congratulations!” she says this time with that of Marisa’s, “Congratulations!” she repeats her statement with a different body each time, yet it’s not to unnerve you. The way she talks and moves, and beams shows an outright happiness at the revelation that you know this much.

Goddamnit, we are Shinji. We even have a giant in the background with the appearance of our friend. The voices, the wooden mech we had, the loss of a loved one at the story’s beginning, and Rumia’s tiring mental state as the story went on. It’s been connected all along! We have to find a mech now and get into it.
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> [x] Hey, wait a minute. I already used my second wish to have you tell me the truth about what's going on, and you went on a rant about zombies and Wii-us. If you are offering to tell me the truth now, that means you were lying about the zombies and Wii-us before. How do I know you won't lie about the truth again?

Yeah, no. You don’t trust the situation in front of you one, tiny, bit.

Mostly for the reasons listed above, one’s that you’re glad to vocalize out loud and because this is where her saying that there are only two choices is nothing more than wrong! For that’s one of the oldest if not easiest tricks in the book and that’s just it, a simple trick to fool you into thinking only those two options are workable.

Because there are way more options than that! This is like…for example, you might say that someone is either alive, or they're dead, ignoring the fact that they might be Dracula. Or you might say that if someone's not a meat eater, they must be some sort of leaf eater, ignoring the very real possibility that they could be Dracula or some evil spawn of an anonymous entity and bla, bla, bla.

In short, you call nonsense on her, “Yeah, I guess you’re right to feel that way. I’m like totally untrustworthy! XD” nonsense to which the girl in front of you unashamedly admits to with yet another useless cute gesture and a just as weird expression before shrugging and moving on. “But you know what? You’re also kind of wrong yourself, as what I’ve said before was NOT completely out of subje- “okay no, she’s clearly making excuses now, which firmly seals her spot as ‘the untrustworthy ass’ inside your book.

So, you don’t take your chances and refuse to wait for her to explain herself. Instead taking out the time to do something much more productive while the girl is off mono-blobbing again.

Starting off, by > [X] Contacting the Meatball God asking for advice on the crown.

As it’s been a while since you contacted her, and you could really use the advice now. Like no joke, this does not feel like the kind of vibe in which you can mess up, it’s a matter of life and death now.

Anyway, not caring whether or not the foe in front of you notices, you clasp both of your hands together and start muttering words of prayers that you barely remember as you try to contact the Meat-Ball God, may her saucy balls rumble the wumblies in the tummies-something and please pick up, I’m totally fucked if you don’t, please pick up Meatball God, please pick up, answer the call!!!

?Hello??

AND PICK UP SHE DOES!

?OH, IS THAT YOU RUMIA!??

YES! It’s a-me, Rumi-yah! You respond back in joy, relieved that no matter what there’s still somebody’s that’s got your back even here and now in the weirdest of places and times.

?WHERE IN THE HECK WERE YOU?! ONE SECOND YOU’RE AT THE HOSPITAL AND THE OTHER YOU’RE POOF, YOU CAN’T JUST DISSAPEAR AND WIPE OFF YOUR SIGNALL GIRL, I WANT AN EXPLANATION!?

Oh, it seems that your joy at the reunion isn’t shared at all. Instead, the Meat-ball god is outright shouting at you with a mix of anger and worry and is that a hint of relief right there? Oh my…

She’s been worried about your absence! Which is something you’d rather find cute in any other situation, but rather than tease and pry or apologize you simply explain the current situation to the best of your ability to her, including on whether you should stab a certain girl with a certain crown.

Your answer is a second of silence, followed by a sharp inhale before the Meat-Ball god says, ?I don’t know if that’s a good idea Rumia, if anything I’d say you’ve committed the biggest mistake of your life? With a sharp tone of voice, an outright vindictive one if you’ve ever heard one. But why?

What did you do wrong? All you did was ask for her advice after all, how is that a mistake?

?That’s because, dear Rumia?

(I am standing right in front of you)

An Ill Fate- Apparations stalk the Night ( https://youtu.be/ACbzUe8Vfto )

“And you fucked up.” The faker says an inch away from you, no longer hugging you and instead looking at you with soulless black eyes as the very air around her reeks of killing intent. “You fucked up, you messed up, you had one last chance to turn things around and failed, you did an oopsie woopsie even though you were so cloooooooooooooose!” she says again with a giggle, the smile on her face still there even though her eyes aren’t anymore.

You frown at her words, realization coming a second too late. But the moment you understand it all.

Your stomach squeezes in place and you say the most natural words to come, “Oh, no.

“Oh, shit indeed.” The girl replies back in mirth again, her voice changing to one’s more familiar after every single line but still, she doesn’t bother taunting you or even laughing some more as she instead gets to the point. “I guess, you’re going to take the truth then.”

“So don’t mind if I list down a few things I think you should realize now.”

“It’ll be the final monologue you’ll ever hear anyway, so where should I start?”

“Oh, I know!”
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“How about I tell you that every time you’ve seen the ‘Ghost of Wriggle’ it was just me trying to keep you motivated? I’m sorry to disappoint you, but the notion of ‘friendship’ letting you perceive your friend beyond the veils of death was nothing more than a cruel illusion.”

“That’s a lie.” You flatly say back and for once your stoic look feels like it’s twitching.

“Not believing me huh? Heh, I guess that’s because you must really be feeling silly now, don’t you? Things like ‘how could I not have seen through this?’ or ‘Why did I not find that suspicious’ must be what you’re thinking right now and frankly you should. Who knew that you of all people would be unable to recognize someone pretending to be your ‘best friend’ as long as it soothed your little lonesome heart?”

“You’re lying!” you firmly speak up again, this time with a tone more desperate. “You have to be, that can’t be true!” and it mustn’t be true, because if it was that easy to fool you, then what else did you do not notice? Who else did you meet who wasn’t actually themselves but just an impostor?

“Oh, am I?” But you’re not fooling her, “Sure, maybe, maybe I’m just lying to you with the hopes of making you doubt your own sanity with details that are so precise that they’re almost uncanny, like how she first appeared after you woke up from being skewered by a tree or how she ate a bunch of popcorn that literally appeared out of nowhere. Or maybe…you’re just desperate to deny the reality that if anyone gives you the slightest of bones that you’d believe their everything. What’s more likely?” she’s enjoying this, her voice is filled with mirth and her whole attitude stinks of an overbearing cockiness, yet her words are still like daggers jabbing into your chest. “What did she say when you woke up again? I think it was something like…” she thinks for a moment.

Then changes into Wriggle’s form, spooky effect and voice included yet all of it feels wrong as she no longer bothers doing it correctly, instead warping it all up. “You really are not having a good day, are you?” and gives off the perfect impression anyway, the perfect recall with the perfect voice...so could it be true?


“Anyway, your little fisheyes aside, I think you’ve also realized that the voices you’ve been hearing were also me, then again how couldn’t you? I just showed it off a second ago.” She changes back to your form while holding a finger over her chin, looking down at you as she doesn’t even bother waiting for more out of you. “I had a longas time that consisted of nothing more than waiting for event x to happen or for event y to be ready, so I thought. Why not fuck around with a complete nobody to waste some time? It was all so easy to make you believe I’m a helpful deity…it only took a day or two of miracles and bam, you’d practically eat out of my hand if I showed myself… honestly what were you thinking Rumia?”

Again, they’re not actually asking you a question, they’re just speaking over you. But what could you even say in this situation? You’re completely out of your element, and you can only tell her to stop or you'll attack her or something!

Which is a threat she just ignores, “What makes you think a ‘god’ of all people would waste their time granting the wishes of a single low-rate youkai? They’ve got standards dear! Standards that a hundred you would never meet! Not now or ever in your lifetime as frankly, you’re pathetic.”

“Still your little hubris was a bit endearing, I can’t deny that the eventual breakdowns made observing you just that much sweeter. Of course, I didn’t just mess with you out of malice, for as the hours have passed and I’ve watched you struggle. I can’t help but say that you grew a little bit on me, I guess that must be the whole ‘observe someone’s journey’ dilemma slash syndrome going into effect there. But mostly, what really made me like you was that you just kept going. Like a car that keeps driving with empty wheels or a doll crawling even though its strings were cut, you just kept flubbing about like a fish on land and seeing that whole debacle just started to feel magical and made my heart start to skip a few beats too~”
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“Which is why after a while, I’ve grown from ironically supporting you, to genuinely wanting to see you strive. I wanted you to suffer more and more! So that you could become even more beautiful through the harsh forging experience! like how a blade becomes sharper the more it’s tempered! Alas, for a moment it looked like your little dispute with your green fairy-pal who I may or not may have messed with a bit head-wise got too much on your morale. So, I had no choice but to intervene personally once again: By taking the appearance of Merlin too!

“Wha-but why would yo- “again, your question is interrupted.

“I knew that you were remotely familiar with her, but not close enough to see anything wrong with her even if she acted super-weird. So, all that was needed for her to ‘join your party’ was for me to find a reason, which I did by simply ordering some of my Tanuki Goons to fake-beat me up d’uh. You were so desperate to be in the right again that engineering a little heroic act was the only little push needed for you to get back at the job, which frankly was a massive success as I've predicted myself. Aren't you impressed by my ingenuity?”

“What about the egg then?” you ask her something for once as she’s finally waiting for a prompt out of you, and you’re not going to amuse her by crying in fear or shouting in rage right now. That doesn’t mean you’re not feeling anything as right now, your mind is a ‘what the duck’ carnival, many suspicions you’ve had, many doubts that have brewn are shaking wildly inside your core right now.

But again, she doesn’t care. “A useless little side-quest item that I gave you just to make sure that nobody else could get all 4 of them. See, here’s the thing. Incidents usually have like good or bad endings, right? In a way that’s like a videogame, get all 4 elemental crystals/ epic sword shards/ plot talismans/ yada yada, get 4 of something to obtain the good ending. So, I made it into a bunch of eggs, because that’s my favourite break-fast meal and I thought it’d be funny. To turn the codes that lead you to the TRUE final zone inside such random things. One would never have expected it.”

“But honestly, why do I have to respect such frugal traditions? Life isn’t a game after all, but you’d be surprised at how whimsical if not outright senile that dumb old bitch we call a mum can possibly be.” The faker lets out a spit at the word ‘mom’ as if such a name on its own revolts her to the very core.

Which is something that doesn’t go unnoticed. “Don’t you call her that!” as NOT-Cirno shouts right back at her with a ferocity and vitriol that makes the girl flinch in response. For that matter you don’t think the girl who just insulted her own mum is making any good impression on NOT-Cirno as the more she talks and the longer it goes on, the more surprised if not aggrieved she feels at the blatant admissions of cruelty and gas-lighting and various other messed up things that she’s been doing.

“Fine, fine. Geez, I was just kidding.” The girl lamely replies while her sister glares at her, then finally realizes that the latter must have been listening in the whole time and looks a bit shocked as if this whole ‘I’m the master-mind all along’ nonsense she’s been talking about wasn’t something she wanted the other to hear about. “And actually, I think you should leave while I have this pr- “

“NO!” the offer is swiftly rejected, and as if to be supportive. The NOT-Cirno moves closer to you. “You’re…being awfully mean, I want to hear everything…. even if it’s bad stuff. I deserve to know.”

“She also threatened to kill me, if you haven’t heard.” You add in, just in case. As while you’re not a family breaker kind of gal, having an ally that will protect you if the need comes would be useful.

“That too! IS out of character! Why? Why are you being so mean right now sister?” NOT-Cirno continues, “None of that is something mother approved! We’re…supposed to make a FUN incident, like…bullets that shoot nice colours and uh…more nice colours? Fun stuff, your stuff sounds like mean stuff!” she says in the middle of a not-so fun background while looking not-so fun herself…

“Well…” The girl trails off, probably too of her horse to just tell the other to shut up right now. “I may or may not have taken some…creative changes?” she lamely offers with a shrug.

“I don’t believe that!” Not-Cirno continues to insist, and you want to see where this is going.

Except the destination of where it is going is not such a fun thing after all. “Oh, put a shoe on it!” The faker says and delivers their shoe aka their foot towards NOT-Cirno’s face. “Not one, but two!” and actively starts trampling the girl’s face in front of you with a mean scowl on her own. Why Not-Cirno’s isn’t defending herself and only lamely begging for her to stop is an outright mystery, but even so.

Is this something you’d just let happen in front of you?

> ---[X] Slam the crown’s sharp point into the faker

Of course not! With the crown in hand, you fly towards hers, make sure you’re in her blind spot.

And charge! Aiming to j-j-j-j-jam it into her backside to hopefully seal her or something!

She’d never expect it, and neither did you. For another face grows into her back, extends their jaw with several razor teeth, and simply blocks the attack by swatting your whole body aside like how a cow’s tail would smash away a fly, all the way onto the oddly warm and soft ground your body lands.

“And that’s your second mistake Rumia, once again. I’m going to make you regret that.

Naturally, you move your hands to try and get up. Only for one to be stepped on and the other outright impaled by a blue laser in the Faker’s hand. It looks remotely similar like a Moon-Light Ray yet smaller and the way she’s holding looks more like she’s wielding a blade made of moon-light rather than just shooting a laser, but even so that description does not stop the burning feeling that’s emanating from your hands that hurts so bad that the tears are naturally spilling out.

“Oh, why are you crying Rumia?” The faker says with a mock gentleness, even though there’s also another one of hers that’s beating the living heck out of NOT-Cirno for some reason. “Did someone hurt you?” you try to glare at her sarcasm but a swift left-foot in the face stops that. “Oh, there you flinched again. Is someone hurting you right now?” she continues this process until you inevitable learn to shut up and stay still. Towards which she grows a smile and starts squatting in front of you.

“Good, so you’re still capable of learning. That’s good Rum, that’s really good as honestly if you keep acting this way then I’m going to have to start disciplining you extra hard. And I don’t want to d- “

You spit in her face before she can continue, well not really. The spit reaches her shoe, but the sentiment is the same. “GO FUCK YOURSELF!” you loudly say back to her. “Does trampling on us make you feel like a big shot? Do you really think that fooling some idiot like me makes you a m- “

You don’t get to finish that sentence, as the blade burning the flash of your hand slowly travels up your left shoulder, burning whatever layer of skin there was on it as it neatly goes through a bunch of black ooze like how a hot butter knife easily goes through a chocolate cake. “You’re a funny gal, Rumia. But honestly you seem to be misunderstanding something: I’m the one that monologues and you’re the one that shuts up and listens, any other situation will lead to a very bad punishment.”

Her blade finally stops…a few inches away from their final destination. Which happens to be…

Right at your eye, your left eye. The blade of light is being pointed at your eye at such a close distance that even when you close it, you can already see the light through your closed eye-lids. And even if you couldn’t see the light, you can still feel the heat of it from so up-close. “Here’s how things are going to be, I’m going to monologue again and then you’ll choose your option. Anything else is going to result in a very, very bad time. Do you understand that much, Rumia?”

“…. Nghhhh..” you can only growl in frustration at this situation.

“I’m expecting a more verbal answer Rum, don’t be silly now~” which doesn’t please the Faker at all, despite her jovial tone the blade draws a tiny bit closer, the whole thing ready to be jammed in anytime. “And frankly, I really disliked what you were trying to do there. I mean honestly, did you seriously think stabbing some dumb crown into me would have done anything? Not only that but you told me the plan just a moment ago so of course I’d be prepared against such a silly thing as this. You should learn to be less predictable, but frankly it’s the fact that you’re a moron that’s cute.”

Again, you give her a growl. Not wanting to give her any more ammo at this point.

Not that you’re afraid of her or even dare consider submitting but showing any more than this will result in a bad time that you really, really, just don’t want to be inflicted with.

So, you just seethe quietly.

It's the only thing you can do, after all.

“Another growl, huh? That’s quite boring of you…” she moves the blade closer anyway, then lets out a chirp-like kind of noise, “But anyway it’s good that you realized your place as a dog, it’s sparing me a bunch more words on how everything you’ve achieved today was through nothing more than my machinations and generosity towards your oh so lovable sort. I wonder how it feels to know that?”

“…. n…….u” you mumble.

“Mhm? What was that? You gotta speak louder Rum.”

“It’s not true. You’re just a liar!” you repeat again, fully believing it. “Just because you may have encouraged me to do things that doesn’t mean everything, I did was part of your plan! There’s no way you could have predicted that much! Even less so if it was for nothing more than short fun!”

“Aw…that’s so cute. Do you really want to believe that? Do you actually believe that? Or is that just some of the self-determination bull-crap that I’ve been passively feeding you with as well?”

“It was me! It was me wanting to revive Wriggle that brought me here and it’s also what I- “

“Oh, yes, yes. What a brave hero you are, though you still don’t seem to understand. How about I do yet another little magic trick for you to understand what I’m trying to say here?”

She changes form again; her blade removing itself from your proximity as well.

But…
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That doesn’t last long as she’s now pointing the thing at you while under Cirno’s guise. “Believe in yourself Rumia! I know things look bad but as long as you believe in yourself and in friendship anything will be possible! Make your own choice! Don’t be tricked! Win for everyone! Everything you’ve experienced, be it your persona, your triumphs, your defeats, and the people you’ve met are all things that you’ve had full control over all this time! Truly you are the hero of Gensokyo!” She’s mocking you, putting doubts into your head while disguising it all as praise in such a blatantly bad way. Because who needs subtlety now that it’s the time for her to gloat her victory over you?

“GAAHHHH!” and it’s working too, as all of it becomes overwhelming. “Shut up! Stop talking!” and you’re reduced to hoping that she’d just finish the job already, cause now there’s nothing you…

Nothing you can do? Somehow that sentence doesn’t feel too right. Is there still a way?

Your musing is interrupted as the girl continues her attempts to break you, “Can’t take the idea that this whole journey, your whole odyssey was nothing more than a cruel joke that wouldn’t have happened if someone else happened to catch my eye, do you? You just must believe you’re special…” she lets out yet another snicker. “Because otherwise, the possibility of a happy ending at this point would be impossible right? ‘She’s too strong’ and ‘When will Reimu save me?’ those are the thoughts you’re thinking aren’t you? And frankly isn’t that proof enough on its own? Isn’t that the proof of your own incompetence right there? I think you lack the qualifications for free will…”

“That can’t be true!” even now you reject the notion with all your heart, you’ve just barely made it back into the show and now is definitely not the time go back in that pool, “I have the rig- “

“You have the right for NOTHING.” The girl kicks your prone form, “Those who are too weak to protect the things they value don’t have the right for anything. That’s the only rule you all have, don’t you? So why is it so hard for you to understand that you’re not the exception here? Are you really that delusional? Are you really that desperate to be special? If so, then I’ll say it one more time...”
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“Every Single Path and action you’ve taken or could take was already predetermined, nothing you did or have achieved was something that forced you to go above your own punch-weight because you couldn’t have lost in the first place. This whole adventure and story were nothing more than the parody of a Greek-tale from the very beginning.”

“The concept of ‘fighting for friendship’ that you’ve followed is no less real either, as the truth is that it was nothing more than a pathetic mask for you to put on so you could endow yourself with the strength to keep moving. To fool yourselves into thinking that your cause was right and just even though you yourself could not tell the difference between your real friends and those wearing their skins.”

“Even your identity is nothing more than a joke, as what do you truly know about yourself? Who gave you your name? Why is there a seal on your head? When did you ever become friends with those other four youkais with which you’ve got nothing in common? There are plenty of things that don’t make sense when you give them more than a glance, but you never questioned it. Too afraid to leave your comfortable, hedonistic lifestyle. Too content to just rot in peace while contributing absolutely nothing to the world at large. And what did you do when you realized the latter? You just went deeper into your self-pity, even now you’re still full of it. Despite trying to say otherwise, both your body and mind are already within my grasp, as I can make you hear whatever I want, see whatever I want and your very blood has already been replaced with my own so within just a short time, I can also make you do the things I want. Terrible things to others and definitely yourself.”

“Now, since you’ve been naughty, I’m going to give you different options from last time. And just to warn you: If you take anything else right now, then I’ll melt off your eyes, rip of your skin and make you join all the little mountainfolk as even your body could at least supply a little bit of energy in our little fun fruit-juice thingy. So, consider yourself fore warned and try not to be clever. There's a patience to how kind and generouis even I can be and frankly, you're starting to make me lose my patience...”

“Ahem! now would you like to eat this cure-thingy and then go home? Knowing forever that everything you did was for nothing and that you left this whole adventure out of your own volition?”

“Or would you like to know the truth about everything…or at least more than what I just told you and then die knowing that even finding out the truth did not stop you from winning this?”

“Pick your poison, my beloved...
Extremely
Stupid
Person.”

“Oh, and one more thing: Get Meatballe’d BITCH! That’s something I always wanted to say, but ahem, it’s time for you to pick your poison so go ahead and despair and stuff. I can wait a second or two after all.”

[ ] Poison A: Give up on the adventure.
[ ] Poison B: Know the truth and die.
[ ] Make your own decision at your own risk. (Write in)

Spaghetti and Meatball is a whole dish, ergo they were in cahoots all along.
That's the dumb joke here, though I won't say more than that I apreciated both of your write-ins a lot but that unfortunately telling the MB God about it kind of was a massive mistake to make, but you couldn't have possibly known after all.

I find the Shinji comparision especially funny, but would like to say that despite this...nothing really.

I have nothing else to say, NOT-Cirno is pretty close to being recruited if not on the verge of doing so but even then you still need to get past this situation first lest you may die a very terrible and horrible death. I'll wish you good luck on that.

If you say I copied Metal Gear Solid 2, then you'll hurt my feelings even if it's a bit accurate. Just so you know.
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Well, shit, we were up the creek, and the paddle turned into barbed spaghetti. So is the crown still in our hands, or did it get knocked out, if knocked, hopefully near NOT-Cirno, who is suffering from divided loyalties?

This was also one of my worries about contacting the meatball. That the Faker would hear the prayer, though this is a much worse outcome.

One thing I am still trying to wrap my head around is why hasn't the Faker just straight up killed us. Is it for the Faker's ego to gloat? The Faker is obviously savvy enough not to reveal the whole plan when we first asked but for what reason? She seems to be trying to break our/Rumia's spirit by seeding doubt in everything we hold to be true, yet it feels suspicious. Like despite this gloating, there is some higher purpose for such actions. So the main component of my question is: why is the Faker offering us a choice? It may be paranoia kicking into overdrive, but I can't help but feel that this Faker has some type of memetic knowledge that requires someone asking directly for it to spread.

>unfortunately telling the MB God about it kind of was a massive mistake to make, but you couldn't have possibly known after all.
> "Just give an answer already, Rum. It's not that haaaaaaaaaaaaard." She ignores your protest again. "Besides you're wrong about the first part, we've been watching you plenty, today and oh wait…"
> "What?" you're pretty sure she said something she shouldn't have there. Or no, the way she's holding her hand over her mouth in fake-shock shows she clearly said it on purpose, she's riling you up and playing your emotions like they're a toy "What did you mean by that?!" and it's working.
> That's some goddess of lies or deceit or spaghetti whatever having fun at your expense like the doodoo brains you are.

Yeah, there were hints we failed to pick up on them, IMO. I thought the god had a schism or something.

Welp, our bag of tricks is near empty by this point, so I don't exactly know what we can do. Yet, there was that whole darkness talk, though I am uncertain now if that was a different part of ourselves or the Faker. I don't know if we can remove that seal on our head and maybe have that dark side come out.

>As long as it doesn’t involve that Chainsaw thing because I know nothing about that. I know far more stuff than you could possibly imagine”.

Would it be possible to draw out advice from that self in this metaphysical space?

>“Also, if I were you, I’d choose fast before the old hag realizes what I’m doing and will come visit us~”.
>[ ] Reimu’s already here and the truth is overrated. Just take the cure now, the other option can be forced out of her once your stronger allies are done beating the muffins out of her when they arrive.

Based on my understanding, this line refers to Yukari, and she usually gets inovled only if the whole of Gensokyo is threatened. The Hakurei and the Gap Youkai might come crashing in at any point.

Our main goal, I believe, is to stall. The issue, however, is I am unable to think of options to do so at the moment that will keep the Faker's attention occupied, which doesn't involve our bodily harm as she describes it
>If you take anything else right now, then I’ll melt off your eyes, rip of your skin
I hope the other Anons can come up with something.
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> Crown

You know those movies that have like a moment where a protag tries to reach for an item that's just out of reach only to succeed at grasping it at the final moment? It's at exactly that distance, right beneath and kind of behind the person who's stepping on one of your hands and outright crippled the other. If only you could grab it without using your hands at without getting her attention in the process, though she litteraly has eyes on her back now so trying to achieve that could be a trap and if it isn't, just extremely hard to do well. A gamble TBH.

> Why aren't you dead yet?

You could ask her that yourself, she's already said how she feels about you though. So asking such a thing could lead to more mockery or her going 'If you want to die that badly then okay!' if you know what I mean.

No comment on whether she has a greater motive. Cause saying yes or no would be a BIG Spoiler.

> Drawing out this self.

Are you sure that's another self and not just her again? If yes, then remember the circumstances that led you to meeting them, maybe if you replicate that, then you could avoid torture temporarily and get some advice. Or you'll just look silly.

> Stalling...

Is definitely an option, things are moving off-screen so yeah, the longer this keeps going on. The higher the chance somebody is going to commit a cool-aid man 'Oh yeah!' moment by dramatically bursting through a wall.

But do you believe that the person in front of you won't notice said stalling tactic? They might not if you're really clever or they migth realize it and amuse you anyway or they might just commit to the threats that they've said they will do.

Picking a poison is always an option too.

If you or anyone else has more questions or if you want to theory delve, then you're free to do so.

I'll give this til like Sunday at the most anyway. So don't think I'll go roll a die this evening. You've got some time.
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I have thought up a plan, but its gonna take some creative liberties with our powers to pull it off.

[x] Poison B: Know the truth and die.

We need to distract her, and the best way to do that right now is to have her ramble on about whatever nonsense the Wii-U has to do with anything.

[x] The Meatball God and the crown are both casting a shadow. Use your darkness powers to take control of the crown's shadow, and permanently fuse it to the top of the Meatball God's head's shadow.

Whenever you move an object, the object's shadow must also move with it. This is the same thing except in reverse. Rumia can temporarily separate an object from its shadow, but once Rumia stops manipulating the shadow it must return to the object. By fusing the crown's shadow to Meatball God's head's shadow, we prevent the shadow from returning to the crown, so the crown must instead return to the shadow. We basically turn the crown into a heat seeking missile. The crown is a bit behind Meatball God, so hopefully she won't immediately notice if we manipulate the crown's shadow. Hopefully the crown will seal her up.

[x] You are darkness incarnate. Fully embrace the darkness and become one with it. Make yourself a living shadow.

If the crown plan doesn't work, Meatball God will come after us full force. There is no way we can go toe to toe with her, so we need to stall for time. We are not strong enough to hurt her, but we might be able to outlast her by becoming an incorporeal living shadow. Rumia is basically a darkness elemental, so she should theoretically be able to become darkness itself. Have you ever tried to attack your own shadow? Its completely useless, you can never damage a shadow. Meatball God can't attack us if we have no physical form to attack, and she can't control us with her blood because shadows do not have blood to control. Basically, we just dodge around as a living shadow until our homing crown can latch onto her head.

If Meatball God is unable to easily hurt us, it might give us some opportunity for banter, which should allow us to work in this previous write-in to our conversation somewhere:

[x] Also speaking of wishes, I still have one left. I wish that you would stop bullying my new friend Not-Cirno. Treat her with love and kindness like a real sister should.

With luck, Meatball God's response will get Not-Cirno to be willing to help us out too.

>>Are you sure that's another self and not just her again? If yes, then remember the circumstances that led you to meeting them, maybe if you replicate that, then you could avoid torture temporarily and get some advice.

The circumstances that led to meeting them was Rumia getting her lights punched out by Daiyousei and falling unconscious. Replicating those circumstances seems ill advised at this time.
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[x] Poison B: Know the truth and die.
[x] You are darkness incarnate. Fully embrace the darkness and become one with it. Make yourself a living shadow.
[x] Also, speaking of wishes, I still have one left. I wish that you would stop bullying my new friend Not-Cirno. Treat her with love and kindness like a real sister should.

I wonder if we can yeet some danmaku bullets while we are a shadow.

> “But honestly, why do I have to respect such frugal traditions? Life isn’t a game after all, but you’d be surprised at how whimsical if not outright senile that dumb old bitch we call a mum can possibly be.” The faker lets out a spit at the word ‘mom’ as if such a name on its own revolts her to the very core.

Do these creatures actually have a mom? How would have claiming to be NOT-Cirno’s father work with that? More importantly, the Meatball God is acting contrary to this mom’s wishes; could we get NOT-Cirno to contact her?
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See this image of you losing an eye, being cut in half, and overall having a bad time?

That’s what’s going to happen to you if you fuck this up, so you better be sure on what to do.

But that’s exactly the problem here isn’t it? You’re good at messing up yet not much else and if what the girl who’s currently ready to stab your eyes and all those nasty things said is true then…

What exactly can you do now that wouldn’t be expected or just swiftly shutdown? She made it blatantly clear that you only have two options and that the slightest attempt at making another will be met with a terrible, horrible, super, duper, unfun to the max kind of fate.

This situation is far more dangerous than you could have ever thought of.

Even so, I had to make a choice and that choice was > [X] PLAN B! Truth and death.

“I understand what you plan to do with me now and want to know what this is all truly about before meeting my inevitable fate.” You say the following without scorn, making sure that the girl in front and above you didn’t feel like she was being looked down or mocked. So, there was no fury or sarcasm in your voice, only quiet acceptance or at the least the illusion of that as your shaking body betrays all the rage that you’re trying to hide. Even then, while the illusion of having given up is weak and quite easy to look through, you did not try to put on an insincere smile.

Since who the hell would smile in this situation?

It doesn’t fool the faker one bit, “Pbbt? Eub. Ah hah hah ha hang. Still with the petty tricks⎯⎯⎯? Normally, people who end up in this kind of situation fall into despair, start crying, or get mad, you know? Ooh. Maybe, you think this is a joke? Do you think this is something like a candid cameraaa?” as she simply lets out a chuckle at your choice and draws the light-blade closer to your eye again.

“I don’t.” You firmly reply since this situation had already crossed the line of possibly being a candid camera (which you assume means prank) a long time ago. “Also, if a young girl lets out such an undignified laugh, then people would start to suspect her class, Miss Incident Master-Mind.”

The black eyes of said mastermind, who had stopped moving for a moment, glisten.
Quickly, you continue speaking before her smile could return to her eyes.

“Also, you kind of promised it.” You again speak calmly before she can get aggressive, dreading and knowing that she could just end the conversation any-time the fancy truly strikes her...

“Hmm? What, do you mean?” And it works, as she fakes some curiosity.

“The fact that you’d only kill me AFTER telling me the truth if I chose B. You’ve already told ‘why’ ‘you messed around with’ ‘me’. I’m grateful that you explained the reason behind the ‘past’ and ‘why I’m here’, but I just chose one of the options you wanted me to choose, so what did I do wrong here?”

“Ah, tha–aats.”

The smile in her eye deepens. This response… if I look back at the patterns up till now.

“Are you perhaps trying to tell me that you expected me to try and choose a third option?”

Twitch. The Faker let out a ‘Mm– ‘sound.

“You shouldn’t have the ability to read minds~ Have I forgotten to remove that fun chain of lies thingy? I'm pretty sure it was an one-time thing though...” The faker pulls the blade away so she can poke one of her own cheeks and pull her tongue at you in a display she probably considers cute or bratty.

It’s not, but it looks like you were on the mark here. And if the fact that you haven’t been stabbed to death yet means anything then you believe it’s safe to assume that the girl before you does follow some of her own rules…the problem is understanding what the exception to that would be.

Once you know that, you’d be able to tell where ‘the line’ is. The line as in ‘the border of what kind of attitudes and questions she’ll find tolerable or not suspicious and what will provoke her ire and or trigger her senses into overdrive'. Once you understand how she ticks, you’d have a bigger chance.

But for now, you’ve at least learned that she’s not omnipotent. Ergo, she doesn’t know everything.

Even so, you can’t let these thoughts lead to a silence that lasts too long or she’ll take back control of the situation, so hastily you ask her a dumb question, “But why are you trying to torture me?” it’s a dumb question because she’s already answered it before, and she might hate repeating herself…

“Are you curious?” but she doesn’t seem to mind if anything she might love her own voice.

“Yeah. Is it like the feeling of kicking a puppy or baby?”

“Mm, well, something like that······. There’s a lot, a lo~~t of annoying things piled up. Ehem. I need someone to vent it out on.” And the unlucky plush toy just happened to be you…she even tried to gaslight it into being a good thing to no avail.

“Aren’t you a Mastermind though? You can just torture your subjects.”

‘This idiot!’, the Master-Mind shouts and pounds the floor next to your head powerfully. After doing so, she continues to pound around like a child throwing a tantrum or one that hurt their foot.

“Uu~ I think I broke a nail. Mmm. There’ll be problems if I torture the people of my world. That’s why, you’re here d’uh!” she states with a flourish as if it’s the dumbest question ever asked.

“D’uh?” even so you continue asking her for info, as during that time you’re trying to come up with any potential plan that won’t be stopped the moment you even tried it. Like maybe turning into a shadow or removing her shadow and then the crown’s shadow to like do something missile?…uh, you swore you just tried to think of something ultra-complicated, but whatever thought that is quickly devolves into random garble noises as such a concept is either too complex for you or just highly unlikely in this scenario. You keep the turn into a shadow part of it in mind though.

Either way, there’s no convenient voice to guide you this time on how to use the Power of Darkness in more creative ways and you’ve yet to transform into a shadow now, even though you’d love that.

Maybe you need to like to visualize it more intensely? It’s what helped with the whole squid-thing so maybe if you could fool yourself into thinking it’s something you could always do and that it is as easy as breathing then to make the use of doing such a thing far more accessible.

That still leaves you with two troubles though: How are you to fool yourself into thinking something you clearly know you’re trying to fool yourself with and how are you even going to transform into a shadow without the faker in front of you noticing and just interrupting the whole process?

Or third problem, are you just making things overly complicated because you don’t actually know if you can do that and think you need to do something to ‘learn’ slash ‘unlock’ that kind of power?

Is it even possible in the first place or are you going to look absolutely silly for trying?

Do you really want to gamble your entire life on trying something you’ve never done before?

“Isn’t tormenting otherworldly beings from completely different worlds! More! Rational!?” those thoughts aside, the Faker says something that may sound strange but completely makes sense.

Because what she’s referencing is just a thing out of the border. Like the one you’ve mentioned.

For doing harm means to do harm to the offender as well. The most classic, and yet effective, method of shielding oneself against that reflective damage lies within the usual daily life between Youkais and Humans. Thus, ‘the border’. If you draw a line, you can prevent any type of empathy by declaring that you and the people in question are completely different beings. I now understood what this self-proclaimed ‘Anon-Master Mind’ meant when they were calling me her ‘best girl’. Since I’m an otherworldly being from another world, by declaring it as so, she is able to obtain a psychological immunity······. That’s what she’s probably trying to say.

Whatever it was, the essence was something insignificant. If not a bit ironic?

“Are you going to do it immediately? I mean the torture part once you’re done monologuing about the whole truth of this incident I mean” you ask her just to know if there’s any more potential time.

“Yuup♪” But she gives an immediate response denying that notion.

You really got caught by a bad person.

“What if I wished as my last wish for you to treat your sister better?” you ask her a bit loudly, hoping that it’s loud enough for the other girl to hear and hopefully ferment her potential side-swapping…

“I’d have to respect that wish, though I don’t see the need behind that?” the girl raises an eyebrow at your wish, not really getting what you’re getting at. “Oh, but if you’re trying to stall by sa-“

“You hit her on multiple occasions, called her replaceable and even threatened her.”

“Oh, true, true.” She doesn’t deny it. “But that’s because she wanted it, see here’s the thing: Just look at her, her whole existence is nothing more than a gag made to resemble someone else and not only that, but she fully believes herself to be someone who she’s not. If she so badly then wants me to treat her like I would Cirno or any other Youkai for that matter, then I shall do so.”

She points to another her, patting said NOT-Cirno gently now as their ‘percussive maintenance’ is over and the patted girl is simply looking down to the ground with an unreadable expression. How she’s able to be at multiple places at once you don’t know, but you can tell that the NOT-Cirno must either be used to this treatment or simply doesn’t have the guts to just defy her older sister directly.

It’s disgusting, “So, you abuse her because she doesn’t know who she is then? And that makes it all okay?” but you can’t let out that venom as you stall for more time, you can’t let your emotions out.

“I hit her because I love her and will stop doing so once she stops being silly. Every bruise or scratch given to her in the meantime is nothing more than my expression of our sisterly bond in the meantime. It’s called percussive maintenance after all, but don’t blame me. Blame society!”

“…”

“I’m just kidding~” The girl does another cutesy pose, “By the way, society hasn’t done anything wrong and I’m fully aware of what my actions do, but still if you really had to blame anyone then blame that fat whore that we call a mother. She’s the one that gave us free will and just ditched us to do all the work. If she had only given a tiny bit more attention to everything, then I wouldn’t have hi-jacked this whole incident. Really, if only she was here then-nothing! Did you think I’d give something information that could backfire against me that easily? I’m afraid I’m not duuuumb.”

“What’s…your mother like?” you ask mostly because it could be important info.

“That’s none of your business, at least not until I’ve got my monologue ready.”

“Ready?”

“Yeah, ready. Do you think I got some convenient big script to read? Making speeches isn’t an easy talk Silly Rumy, so just shut up for now, don’t move and let me think about it some more.”

Ah, she’s rubbing her chin and looking upwards now. This could be the opportunity needed.

Darkness envelops me! Turn me into shadows! Something! Something! Work Already!

…. Nothing happens. Despite tiny bits of shadowy smokes rising beneath your body, not a single part of you fleshes, ooze, nails or even hair turns into something incorporeal. Did you do something wrong?

Yeah, that must be it. Otherwise, you’d just be plainly fucked, so you try again.

And again.

And again

And again.

To absolutely no difference.

“You sure are funny, trying to struggle like that.” The girl looks down at you with a smile, having seen the whole attempt anyway, her whole looking away thing was nothing more than bait. “Did you forget what I said earlier? Even though you managed to guess that I was expecting this…I’m surprised you messed up like this anyway, so tell you what? This one’s a freebie but the next one won’t be~” oh, this is bad, but she’s right what were you thinking?

Of course, something dumb as trying to pull some new power out of your ass wouldn’t work...

But you were desperate!

What else could you have possibly done in this situation?!

None of this fair at all!

Even so, you just bite your lip. She still gave you another chance after all, so you may as well t-

“Just kidding! I’m the type that keeps their promises, so now…IT’S TORTURE TIME!!

She pulls out the blade again, “And boy was I looking forward to it! You know, I frankly prefer the mental kind of torture, since anyone can just take out a scissor and mess about with it. But just for you I’ll make an exception. Feel, honoured that your last moments will give me bliss!”

“WAIT! What about the monologue!? The truth?! You said, you’d talk first! You said you-“

She no longer cares about what you have to say, “I would have monologued a bit, but you’re the one that disobeyed me, Rum! So, from now on, you will be tortured!! Now then, now then. How should I start? Just kidding, I already know! I’ll stab this blade underneath your nail and BAM! raise it using the level principle. I’ll use my teeth and clipclipclipclipclip your eyelids off. I’ll turn my fingers into daggers and slightyslightlyslightlyslightly cut off your lips! Aah, but it’s okay! Don’t worry, since I won’t penetrate your brain when I stab, stab, stab cutleries into your ears! Why? Mm, the reason is. If I do something like that, then in an instant, wooooosh, in an instaaant.”

BANG!! Something strikes your head hard, stunning you immediately and making it feel like the floor is shaking about. Before you can think about why you didn’t dodge that or even tried to bite her hand/foot or even show the slightest sign of fighting for your life, your chin is calmly raised up.

So, she can look into your eyes with a feral grin, and a pathetic expression of your own face is shown through their reflection, “You’ll diiieee, ah hah ha ha!! I won’t kill you immediately. That’s why it’sokayit’sokay. Worries ZERO!” you’ve met a genuine pyscho in your life and now there’s no…

No escape? That can’t be true right? There has to be a way out, right? Come on, anyone show up already! Move your body and unlock some new power already! Do anything to get out of this!

I don’t want to be hurt, I don’t wanna be hurt, I don-Is there some way to dissuade her? Should I just try to get up and blast her with my everything? Should I beg for mercy, what can I do. What ca-

Nononono.

No.

Calm down. Keep it together. [Are you not the Youkai Of Darkness?] Yeah, the [Reason You Fight!], think about it, thinkthinkthinkthink. Okay. As long as I don’t lose my cool-headedness, I can adapt, improvise and overcome anything. It’s not difficult. It’s not difficult at all even for someone stupid.

It’s not difficult for someone who lived peacefully in one of the most dangerous forests their whole life! It’s not difficult for someone who managed to get all the way here anyway! It’s not difficult!

So, calm yourself down, Rumia!!!

Your composure was just barely able to return as you put more and more strength into the spite burning within heart. You raised your head and look at the girl standing by your feet, the ‘Culprit Responsible for this whole debacle’ or however the heck she calls herself.

And you realize one important fact, her eyes don’t have any feelings behind them, nor does she have a shadow.

And a creature that lacks either of them, lacks a soul. Or at least so the stories go.

Also located in the center of her left hand, lies a scar that looked like something that was formed when smashing a pickaxe into a wall of ice with all your strength⎯⎯⎯a rupture that’s amongst all her forms, it’s a sign of weakness if not a wound from which she’s unable to recover from? Perhaps.

You understand three things from this.

First, the fact that this fellow and you were not part of the same ‘youkaikind’ therefore your worldviews are different.

Second, the fact that this is the same feeling you had when you met someone else for the first time⎯⎯⎯that this is fate, that this will be an ill-fated relationship, this feeling passed by after having left your heart tightly bound. Leaving behind the message that there can only be one amongst you.

Finally, that she can be hurt. Even if she’s far more powerful than you, how would you even know that? What kind of oppressive aura have you sensed from her? Why are you assuming things? It’s not like you’re a complete weakling yourself either and you’ve already won fights that were supposed to be impossible in the first place…so why are you giving up this easily? Isn’t it obvouis?

Before this day ends, one of you must die. And by the devil, it WILL not be you!

It doesn’t matter if the incident ends or not, if this girl lives you will not have peace in your life. She has to die in an extremely painful way, every single sense in your body and heart wants that!

The not you who probably feels the same way, is still looking down at you, who is in a pathetic state, giggles and raises a handkerchief she that used to be her right-hand to cover her mouth. “Ah ha ah. It’s embarrassing if you stare at me so intensely, are you thinking of a way out of this? Are you trying to keep your dignity by saying that whatever pain comes you’ll keep your head high? —Like it, matters. Anyway, I’ll start with your eyes, now. So don’t move or this’ll get mesy~” the blade is closing in, and this time it’s not stopping, 3 centimetres, 2 centimetres, in about five seconds the pain-train is heading off.

Ah, is that even enough time to come up with a new plan? It feels like the world has slowed down but that could just be your head going into a desperate overdrive. But even if time remains, what of your options? Nausea, queasiness, and a sickening feeling in drown themselves into your gut as if you had gulped down a glass of poison, your vision feels blurry and, ah, this is the end, isn’t it?

“I give up.”

At those words, the faker lets out a Mm? sound and gazes at you, looking straight at those eyes, you speak, one more time.

“I said I give up. I understand fully well that you’ve got the complete advantage here and that you’re superior to me in every way. I can’t nor could have ever stopped you, so please spare my life.”

“Hmmm······. That’s quite good.”

The Faker cackles and takes a moment to bend her knees so both of your eyes meet, there’s a glint in hers and her teeth are out with a canine if not ravenous expression to them.

“Buuut. There’s one problem······ Why do I have to listen to yoouu?”

A reasonable leisure for a person with an overwhelming superiority. Although your barely maintained composure was blabbering about your chances of victory if you were to charge at her right this instant since you weren’t THAT restrained, the intuition you’ve gained after having experienced a 2-day war with this bitch was pressing down that option. This person is an individual who has committed acts like this until now, is committing them now, and will continue to do so in the future. The thought that she appears cocky if not a bit defenceless right now has most likely crossed her mind already, thus meaning, she naturally has a countermeasure. Even if she didn’t, you had the assumption that she’s just on another power compared to you anyway. So, it’d be fruitless.

Just as you expected, she grins again and continues peering into your eyes.

“Mm? By any chance, is the thought, ‘I’m not tied up, let’s rush at her and give her my final everything’ going through your head? Ufu, ah hah ha. Of course, the majority of people usually fall into a state of panic when they see this, so they aren’t even able to think of that idea, but you don’t seem like you’re a part of that ‘majority’. Why is why I like you so much! Regardless, it’s impossible. Absolutely impossible. It’s a good idea to give up, you know?”

Regarding height, the Faker is currently squatting next to you in a silly way, but there was an imposing feeling, as if you were being stepped on, wrapping around your entire body.

“Do you know why? I, can immediately······.”

“Summon your royal bodyguards.”

She stops for a second before chuckling.

“Of course. Adding to that, I can always······.”

“Change our location so that’d I’d end up in some solitary cell or a place filled with traps and minions or really any place where I’d have a massive disadvantage other than not knowing how strong you are?”

A silence falls over us.

The faker tilts her head dumbly, both your heart and her smile stiffen a bit at this stand-down.

“—How?”

Sharp eyes, which were no longer behaving frivolously or smiling, were directed towards me. I didn’t tell her that ‘I’m capable of looking at a situation calmly, I can read the atmosphere, I don’t get caught up by the 〈impossible〉, so I’m able to put together the series of events as they occur, and that by being able to do these things, I’m able to always precisely understand the situation around me’ because all of that would be a complete lie, the truth was far more simpler than that…

I'm making wild guesses while trying to look smart, it's a surprise she hasn't seen through it already.

“Your turn.” But I had no reason to tell her that, if anything letting her try to guess it might give me even more time. It is pathetic but any more seconds given is an opportunity for a turnabout. Even better if she thinks I'm holding back.

“Ha? What are you······ ah······ mm. Are you telling me to take a guess at how you found out? But······ you’re not some genius or even a magician······ You, aren’t you a moron? You’re the dumb youkai that can’t see through her own darkness and bumps into trees, an absolute joke of a character so how could you even guess that much? Was it a lucky guess or are you bluffing? Or perhaps did I forge you a bit sharper than I expected? If so, did I create my own petard?”

The girl moves her head around restlessly. You wait silently. Then she let out a sigh.

“Haa, whatever. You’re right. My ability, is like that.”

“And by that, it’s safe to assume you’re the one that brought me here and not some toilet? Which would mean you’re also capable of going from here to Gensokyo so you could send me home?”

“Correct. Well, I don’t plan on doing so.”

Ending that topic there, she abruptly turned her head. As if enjoying the hellish sight around her, she turned not only her head from you but the subject as well.

“I’ll let you know this much since you managed to survive this far: I’m not a summoner, or at least my ability wasn’t built for that purpose entirely. Still through some loophole I’m capable of moving myself anywhere or anything that belongs or is a part of me. With that in mind it’s obvouis that anyone touched by an anon-object qualifies for that, but in a way that’s just it. An unintended feature. And since it’s just moving them in front of me, most of the time they don’t immediately understand the situation and become loyal to me just because I summoned them. Rather there are more occasions of them trying to resist like crazy, and others try to think up petty tricks like a certain someone…”

“What a pain!” she shouts with venom and then turns to you again.

“That said, here’s another riddle for you then: What do you think I would have to do to ‘electrify’ them, make them into a loyal ‘slave’ towards me, and turn them into a personal ‘pet’?”


That’s not even a hard question, if what she said is even remotely true. Then the only way to deal with such a person would be the good old classical “Carrot and Stick.” That or mind-control, but you'd never offer the latter if she's talking about you here.

“Thaaaaaaaaaat’s iiiiiiit!!”

A shift of weight abruptly changes, as if something to your left just regrew….and it did, your left arm once completely crippled has been turned back to normal and the faker is no longer standing on your right. If anything, you feel a warm feeling inside of yourself, as if you took a fresh warm bath….

“I’m impressed, you continue to surprise even now! In da fresh!” The girl looks at you with a warm smile, as if you’re some childhood friend, “So as a reward, I gift you with this!” she kicks the crown your way, the one you’ve been trying to grasp this whole time.

“The right for a final battle, the final struggle against a hopeless situation, the bitter yet brave end of Rumia. Rather than dying like a dog on the floor. Isn’t that kind of me? Isn’t that considerate of me? Now, pick it up and let’s start!”


She’s toying with you again, but this time her voice shows an odd amount of respect towards you. Making you realize that as crazy and psychotic this girl is, she does have a genuine fondness for you.

It’s revolting, completely disgusting, insane, you want to vomit, you want to lash out.

But even so, you remain calm.

You’ve been remaining calm for a while now, to the point it just feels unnatural.

‘This disgusting psychopathic lunatic, let’s fight her!
’, rebuking her is simple, but what will change?

If I fight her then I’ll just die.

‘How could you do such a thing? I won’t forgive you! I’ll be sure to get out of here!’, screaming at her is easy, but what will change?

Nothing, even if I ran away, she could just make me appear before her again. Nor is there anywhere here to run away to.

That’s right. Nothing will change if you rely on my emotions and play her game. If I try to do that too rashly, then I will ‘no longer’ be able to do ‘anything’.

I understood to my core, that the situation would just become much more severe if I were to do something like fighting or running.

That’s why don’t do it.

Be calm. Be cool, Rumia.

There is another way!

A way to breakthrough must exist!

There was no deep breathing. I was simply gazing at the Culprit of this incident while working my brain as fast as possible.

“Hm? Even if you just glance at me like that, I might just get bored and attack first you know?” the girl replies and seems to be waiting for you to make the first strike, whether that's her being generouis or sadistic you don't really care.

Okay, but it still gives you time, time you’ll use to think about what you know seriously and super fastly······!!
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Organize all the information that has been revealed so far.

First, I was kidnapped(summoned) by a lunatic from another world.

Second, that lunatic knows how to use magic/has a supernatural ability like everyone else. According to her, she’s only capable of summoning a person with it, however, there may be more to it than that.

…Wait there IS more to that, she clearly said she’s using a loophole to do things this way so her ability must have some primary use that she’s refused to reveal to you so far.

Third, that lunatic is a 'Daughter' and a 'Sister' ? This is supposedly a different world or maybe some huge illusion, so it may differ with the common sense back home, but for this mental patient, who is this powerful, to be calling herself an ‘Daughter’······ then that position must certainly be remarkable.

Even more if this 'Mom' created her, though whether by that she means she’s like something artificial or like born through a mommy and daddy parent-fun-time-event is something you don’t know.

Even so, to be the daughter of something it’s implied she has authority over everyone else.

So, the hierarchy would be Mom> Daughter> Fanon Master> Anon Item.

That’s the best you can come up with right now, it might actually be the best you can come up with.

Because you were never book-smart, or street-smart, but you are forest-smart.

At least a little bit, maybe this is what they call a desperate struggle for survival?

Like how human women are capable of lifting a tree if their baby is under it, or how some youkais become more powerful the more wounded they are, maybe that's the effect.

Still, the fact she revealed so much that even someone like you knows this much is a good sign to you and a very bad sign to her. It means that despite all her ‘sawyness’ she’s still indulging in the dumb tropes that most fictional super villains go through…or does she have another motive?

You don’t know and don’t have a way of knowing right now, so let’s continue.

Fourthly, that nutcase can send me home but has no intention to do so.

Fifthly, that bitch wants you to suffer, because she likes you? Something like that.

And finally once I die. There’s nothing preventing her from doing the same to other people that have been touched by anon items, though whether she has done so before or not is something you don’t know.

Maybe she wouldn’t summon Marisa since that girl would just Master-Spark her butt….

The fact you can think of that means you’re not completely in despair yet. Well, ever since you found out that the other party was insane, everything has been going down a path of hopelessness.

Regardless, if there’s one thing that was a relief, then it’s the fact that a method of returning home most certainly exists.

Because if this person decides to let you go, then that’ll happen.

Though if that were to happen, then certain measures need to also be taken in order to prevent her from summoning you again······ there’s no point in thinking that far ahead yet. In the first place, this girl doesn’t plan to send you back anyway.

She wants you to die in a hopeless final battle for her fun.

“Now, shall we slowly get started—?” she speaks up, visibly tapping her feet on the floor and crossing her arms with an amused expression. “I’m going to count to 10 now, and if you don’t attack then I’ll go first! 10, 9, 7” and she already starts said count-down with a smug attitude.

You give NOT-Cirno a glance, she’s still being pet by the other faker. Still staring at the floor as if entranced, what could she possibly be thinking and why hasn’t she come and helped you already?

Was it a mistake to try and rely on anyone but yourself right now? You don’t know, but you do know that you need to do something right now or your tale will end after this countdown is up.

‘Do we have to fight?’, no. Cliché lines like this won’t even be able to stall for time.

‘Why are you counting downwards? Ten is up!’, should I play innocent? It’d be a question whether she’d even smirk at that.

‘Why?’, that’s an absurd question at this point. However, if you keep asking yourself like this, then you can at least contemplate for an idea⎯⎯⎯Yeah, like the the main reason.

From the start, this girl isn’t trying to torture you because she wants something from you.
It’s just because she’s bored.

Merely because she wants to play around.

······That behaviour of hers which can’t be understood or forgiven from a normal person’s perspective. If anything, ⎯⎯⎯it’s more of a gap to breach through at this point.

“I can.” You spread your arms and shoulders like a cross and speak. “Entertain you with a different method.”

She reacts with a ‘Hm?’ sound. That’s good enough. You didn’t expect for it to work from the start anyway.

“Think about it. You should know well if you’ve played around with other people before. I won’t be able to endure for as long as anyone here, and since I’m a lowly youkai, I won’t be able to produce much energy in whatever fruit juice you talked about. Moreover, my will is weak, so I’ll probably die quickly.”

“But I’m sure you’ve got a droplet of energy? Why not use every resource?”

“Well, even so. Do you really want to taste something that comes out of a youkai?”

“Eh, no. I don’t need it······.” she replies in disgust, good so that comment about 'filthy youkai' did mean something.

“I don’t think I’d taste good anyway, so why even mention that? If you keep saying things for no reason, then everything will think you’re full of air and no rock. At least it’s like that at home.”

Not letting go of my attitude used when dealing with another human being, I spoke to her to reinforce the fact that I was a living being with a name and an identity, in most scenarios involving humans that’s almost always made them contemplative or more merciful.

The line only works when you truly believe the other person isn't anything like you after all.

The Faker reveals her sharp canines as if she were dissatisfied but doesn’t seem to look any troubled by the morality of this.

“Gensokyo may be like that, but it’s not like that here.”

“Is that so? If you allow me the opportunity to learn about this place, then I’ll be able to adjust to the customs here.”

“Aren’t you scheming a bit too much? From the very beginning.”

“Yes. But I want to live, and you want amusement.”

The Faker shows her canines once more.

Silence falls on us like that again too, if there was a cricket then you’d be able to hear it.
Once that silence felt like it had gone on for a while, you uttered.

[Fufu. Just kidding! Uhah, ah hah ha. How was that? Did you think you’d be able to live since I was thinking for a long time? Were you hopeful? How unfortunate! Crushing that kind of foolish hope is more joyful to me than having three square meals a day.], if you plan to say something along those lines, please don’t.”

“······.”

Seeing as she clicked her tongue, it seems she did plan to. During most of your life, you’ve properly learned about what false hope was. Though it was something that was forcefully taught to me when you had no idea how to really make patterns or fly about······you guess you haven’t become rusty.

“What will you do?”

“······It’s somewhat, extremely, a bit, annoying, you know—?”

“Probably because you weren’t able to take the initiative······. But isn’t the initiative in a conversation like this not important? You can break down the conversation whenever you want, after all.”

“Hmm. Are you personally saying that? How wiiise.”

“Don’t think too far into it. I’m saying that you can torture and kill me whenever you want. Literally whenever. If that’s the case, then it’s fine to do it after having entertained yourself a bit more, right? Do you know about the marshmallow story?”

“That’s the manga where a rabbit with an impassive expression on its face appears, right?”

“······No, not that.” You’ve never heard of such a thing before either, a manga about a rabbit, not what a manga is, as again, Meiling has plenty of those kinds of books herself.

“Ah. Then is it, the manga where 4 girls and one tall girl appears? The one with an anime as well.”

That’s Strawberry Marshmallow. That’s a rather old thing to know about and is a manga that only Meiling managed to get out some library. For a person who’s from another world, why is her antenna reaching out towards a weird direction? How does she know that much about Outside World stuff anyway? What kind of nonsense has she been indulging in offscreen?

Ah, should you have perhaps called her a chuunibyou instead?

“To keep it simple, if you endure today, then you’ll be able to eat two tomorrow, and if you endure tomorrow as well, then you can have 4 the day after······ Like that.”

“? If it’s food, then I have a mountain of it. Do you want some chocolate bars?” out of her pocket she pulls one out with a red package over it, the words ‘KitKat’ are adorned on it too, but still…

“No, thank you.” It’d probably be poisoned, heck even if it wasn’t you don’t trust her one bit.

“But it’s gooood.” Since you don’t want it, she just goes ahead and eats it herself.

You let out a sigh. It seems you succeeded in softening the atmosphere. The Faker shows a grin once she’s done eating the thing and lets out a very rude burp sound too.

“Ah hah. Mm, Dear. Rumia. So, to speak, if I have patience, then I’ll be able to gather that much of an abundant harvest, so I should wait. Is that it? Rumia”

“That’s right.”

And if I don’t want to?

Silence.

“Juuust. What if you, going through an unimaginable pain, and dying a frustrating death, right now, is something that I want? Rumia, dear?”

You didn’t clench your teeth. In any case, you can conclude that she didn’t feel even the slightest bit of inconvenience towards losing the other party. If you put it in terms of a contract, then her side has the superiority.

I’m merely in a position where I’d be grateful just to have my life prolonged.

Just because the atmosphere has softened, doesn’t mean that the main issue of the situation has changed. I didn’t delude myself. Even though I didn’t······ I wracked my brain.

What else can I say?

‘I guess there’re no other choices then–Do what you want’.

I can’t. Normally, I would have lowered my head like this and backed down, but right now, I could smell a trap. 〈Tsk, I had expectations but was this all you could do? Then I’ll kill you like you wanted.〉 For some reason, I feel like these words would come out nonchalantly.

‘For pity’s sake, please consider it.’ should I latch onto her?

No. I feel like a 〈I had hopes, but is this it?〉 kind of reaction would be returned to me and result in my death.

Albeit, if someone were to ask why I thought this, then I could only put my gut and mood as a basis.

Then that means that’s your limit.’ should I act gallantly?

No, that’ll just cast a damper on the situation······ words that wouldn’t spoil the fun.

Think, Rumia.

Think.


Find a way.




Eventually, with only a single second left on the timer.


[ ] I obtained an idea! (Write-in)
[ ] I couldn't think of anything. (Fight)
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We're so fucked, aren't we?
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>>32069
Yup, we have to thread the line between bravery and cowardice while amusing the Faker long enough for help to arrive. Thinking of it, our options are:
-Make the Faker take time
-Make the Faker talk about themselves
-Endure torture

Been thinking about maybe throwing some poetry nonnsense to see if it could confuse the Faker for long enough. Though it might just make the Faker mad and just kill us outright.

Also, has the switching between first person and second person been a bit hard to read at times in this update?
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Are the repeated switches between second and first-person perspective for Rumia in the most recent update intentional? I don't recall seeing that before in this fic, but I know some writers who use such switches deliberately to convey something (most commonly, changes in the character or alternate personalities).
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The switching between perspectives is not a bug, it's a feature indeed.
I'm not that big of a klutz to not see such a thing past grammar correction.

Anyway, speaking of options.

Would you like some help? I'm not going to just tell what the miracle medicine in this cake is, but I can pull out a TIE-Breaker Dojo and pull out an 'Who wants to be MILLI-NOT DEAD!' show.

In other words, you'd get a life-line.
Or in other words, a hint.

That'd work in two ways.

You can either get help from an imaginary expert (As in ask a 2hu Rumia knows about what she should do or if whatever choice you're about to make is a good idea, though they'd respond in a way that she perceives them to be like.)

Or you can just show the choices you want to make and are hesitating on.
And I'll remove the ones that are the least likely to succeed.

Either way, after one of those. You'll have one more chance to confirm your vote or change it.

And though that may sound silly, it's the TIE-BREAKER-DOJO.

And their main-purpose is making it easier for you to make an decision, so I'll set that up tommorow if you want.
Otherwise, you're free to make your own decision of course. It's entirely optional after all.

Will you take this handicap?
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>>And you realize one important fact, her eyes don’t have any feelings behind them, nor does she have a shadow.

>>And a creature that lacks either of them, lacks a soul. Or at least so the stories go.

[x] Use the power of darkness to create a shadow for Meatball God, thus giving her a soul and therefore a conscience.

That's the best plan I can come up with.
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[X] “A final discourse.”
-[X] kick the crown, so it lays between the Faker and Not-Cirno.

The Faker has proven stronger in Body and Mind than us, but what of the Spirit?
Despite the circumstances where our initial plan failed, we received confirmation that our adventure had been manipulated throughout and that our very body no longer is wholly under our control.
The spirit of defiance is still there.
The Faker wants a frustrating death for us. I am confident that an opportunity to break our spirit through words rather than pain would be immensely gratifying for her.
To see the lowly Youkai that she spurred into action and then sharpened to reach this point of confrontation and then break that forged spirit would be poetic. A false spirit made then shattered by her hand.
Three motives we had for this adventure can be presented as the main arguments:
>For our friends to be saved.
Our starting motive for independence was to find a way to avenge or revive Wriggle. That the Faker caused the death and took upon her face to motivate us a certainty; yet, her actions cannot entirely account for our actions, big and small. She gave the driving force, but we saw the follow-through. What does it matter if a cause was founded through false means? We advocated for one we called a friend even in the face of the end. What matters for the actions we took was motive, not consequence. Can the Faker swear our motive was entirely false throughout?
>For our desire to see the adventure through via our actions.
The Faker claimed every step we took earlier to be predetermined, that our efforts did not make us rise to a true challenge, and that every win never had the possibility of loss. That everything Rumia did in this adventure was one big joke on the Faker’s part, a parody of a Greek tragedy. Yet, even when informed of our impending doom through the disease the Faker brought, Rumia did not lie and wallow in self-pity but rose to the occasion to choose the path of seeing a mission through. Can the Faker claim that this lowly Youkai that defied the predictions of everybody was entirely a puppet? That not even once the Faker had been surprised by the actions of Rumia?
>For the truth of the incident to be known.
Our final choice was to accept death to know the truth. Was this the completion of the role the Faker made for us or a culmination of a spirit sharpened by the conflict it faced? Would a Rumia of the past from the Faker’s knowledge be capable of such a sacrifice for truth, especially one she described as indolent? Undoubtedly one who claims to have had us on a string can claim a complete surety that we would have chosen the option of knowing a death that grants us the truth instead of choosing to return to comfort or the third option of defiance. Can she?

Notably, a stoic facade seems to confound the Faker, which makes sense considering the anon items run on emotion. So for any stall tactics to work requires a face like marble.

Stall tactics engaged!

If this fails and the Faker decides on torture, we can try smashing our head to induce unconsciousness or, if the situation is entirely dire, death. It would need to be quick as the Faker controls our blood and can heal us, as noted by our left arm.

This is truly a horrific situation for us. That I can consider such an option, and for it not to be the worse outcome for us, is a testament to that.

Hopefully, Not-Cirno realizes the parallels of her situation to our beginning, of a puppet not yet rising to a challenge and allowing others to take the lead; yet, recognizes the difference between her now and us now is all due to her sister’s actions. And hopefully, the Faker is too arrogant in her belief in Not-Cirno’s loyalty.
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I'm aware this is a mean question to ask.

But anyway.

[x] Use the power of darkness to create a shadow for Meatball God, thus giving her a soul and therefore a conscience.

This one won't work, mostly cause the lack of one is more an indicator.
It's like giving a vampire a reflection, it doesn't stop them being a vampire.

That'll be your life-line used.

[X] “A final discourse.”
-[X] kick the crown, so it lays between the Faker and Not-Cirno.

Will this be your final vote? No doubt, all in.

If so, I'll update tommorow (at my evening), silence will be taken as a yes.
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I imagine this as the face we are making by this point in the story.

On another note, I realized that since we have a telepathic connection to the Meatball God, if we are beaten to an inch of our life and then suddenly a hero breaks in and fights the Meatball God, we might be able to distract her for a second through that connection and the hero could land a shot. Though, we don't know if the connection works like a telephone that could just not be picked up.
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Final discourse
I said to the Faker the words that came to my head after having worked my brain to the point where an audible sound of clanking could have possibly been heard.

To be exact, they weren’t words.

You kneel. Anticipating your movement, the Faker tilts her head and let out a sound, “Hm?” As if reaching for something on the ground, you continue lowering your body.

Following that, while using movements that displayed no hostility, you kick the crown away with your foot.

The impact behind it, makes it fly towards the faker, only to pass over her and land close toward Not-Cirno, interrupting whatever daydream she was having and looks at said crown with confusion in her face and then back towards the two of you. Still not understanding what the situation is, perhaps, but she's definitely looking at the two of you now.

In this moment, although there was a possibility that the Faker would instinctively attack me for possibly trying to re-seal either her or her sister via a clumsy kick, she didn’t do so.

That changes when she realizes you’ve used that sight to already close the distance between her and you. Having for once, of your own will gotten close enough to invade HER space.

Though that startles her for a moment, shortly after a look of interest fills her eyes.

Thanks to that, without any interference, I brought my hand towards the end of her now, snow white palm, and.


“A final discourse,” you hold her hand, again, of your own volition, squeezing it tightly as you stare into her eyes, the reflections of which show a girl with a heart of fire and a face of marble, “If you’re going to give me a handicap for this final battle, then what I want is the truth, the entirety of it. Give me that and I’ll give you my all in this battle.” You show no hesitation and get to the point of what you want, ignoring the intense cold that surrounds the hand you’re touching and the odd blush that’s on the Faker now that you’re holding hands, just endure it.

The girl giggles again, her eyes softening as she lets out another ‘Hm?’ followed by her returning the gesture as she squeezes your hand with a painful strength, “And if I don’t grant that?” she asks the question, saying nothing more than that as she expects a good answer or more like, a fun one out of you.

Silence is all you give her.

“If you’re going to say something along the lines of, ‘then I’ll die obediently, wouldn’t that bore you?’ or ‘you will, because you want me to amuse you’ then don’t bother. I know you’re stalling for time, to no avail really, why that is I won’t say!” the faker giggles again, but you’re growing used to it. And know she’s getting to a point, “But still….”

This is the part where she waits for you to gain some false hope, only to say just kidding!
Or this could be the part where she doesn’t do that, to your surprise, only to do it anyway!
Or this could be the part where you wonder why she hasn’t killed you yet, realize she could have done so way earlier, and that your stalling tactics must be working, if only because, subconsciously, she too is waiting for your butt to be saved at the last possible moment?

Or she’s just taking her time before baring her fangs into you, “I’ll do it…for one thing~” she enjoys caressing your soft cheek, even if you don’t respond to it.

She is acting cocky even if you’re not telling her to back off for putting her other arm around your back.

And you’re not showing the fact that, the way you two are moving about in slow circles now, in this hell-scape land, in this slow rhythm, and in this suspicicouis stance...

Looks very similar to what we call dancing.

“What would that thing be?” if only there was some moonlight too because you can certainly tell that the Faker in front of you has the personality of a devil. Though, that reference aside, the only reason you’re even letting her move you around like this is self-explanatory.

“Dance with me, be my companion for the most beautiful dance in your life, before my urge to kill you becomes too overbearing, give me a good memory of us together! Afterwards, you’ll get the truth you desire, and the death that I wish to inflict on you, how about it? Will you engage in the Tarantula Bite with me?”

…That’s both the weirdest, yet easiest question one has ever asked you.

Yet also the most out of nowhere request and or twist that she’s pulled up now.

Still, all you need to do is say yes, there’s absolutely no way to mess that up.

But…could that be a trap in itself? What if after accepting to dance, she just goes and kills you afterwards anyway? You’ve got absolutely no reason to believe she’ll keep her word.

Or do I? Does it matter? If there’s an opportunity to make the invisible timer of my rescue, should you not take it? Or is there something else here that I’m overlooking.

Perhaps, you’re overthinking it. Even so, you can’t help but notice with this proximity…

A certain…weird mood? One second, she’s ready to give me a fate worse than death and now she’s telling me to dance with her, all while being touchy and blushing all sweetly.

What in the fuck is wrong with this bitch?

[ ] “Okay.” You agree because the alternative is a quicker death, obviously.
[ ] She’s so close, that her guard is down, if you tried something now, it could work…
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>Having for once, of your own will gotten close enough to invade HER space.
>you hold her hand, again, of your own volition, squeezing it tightly as you stare into her eyes, the reflections of which show a girl with a heart of fire and a face of marble
>a heart of fire and a face of marble
>You show no hesitation and get to the point of what you want
>now that you’re holding hands
>just endure it.
How could you add this to the story?
Assertive handholding!
I don’t know if my heart can take such a shift in tone for the story.

>I know you’re stalling for time, to no avail really, why that is I won’t say!

Well, that’s totally not ominous at all.

>Will you engage in the Tarantula Bite with me?

Uh...what is the Tarantula Bite? I don’t think I have ever seen this phrase before.

>A certain…weird mood? One second, she’s ready to give me a fate worse than death and now she’s telling me to dance with her, all while being touchy and blushing all sweetly.

The effect of handholding, a stony face, fiery eyes, and throwing lines such as, “If you’re going to give me a handicap for this final battle, then what I want is the truth, the entirety of it. Give me that and I’ll give you my all in this battle.” is a guaranteed method to make any bloodthirsty, sadistic, shapeshifting, downright terrifying, reality bender blush! Pretty sure if you said these lines to an Oni, they would fall in love with you on the spot.

[X] “Okay.” You agree because the alternative is a quicker death, obviously.

I cannot conceive of any trick that would work in our favor in this instance, so I chose this option instead. Let’s try getting a solid headbutt in before meeting our doom.

She could be totally messing with us, but a betrayal of trust at this point might finally make Not-Cirno move to action.
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“I expected as much.” The faker’s face becomes smug again, though there’s an uncharacteristic amount of joy behind her hum, she lets go of you, albeit partly as your hands are still connected.

She takes a step back, or more appropriately, moves the two of you towards the centre of this room.

Why that’s the case, you don’t know. “So, let’s begin!” but that question is soon answered.

When the surroundings shift again, turning everything into a blur before the ground, oh so red and fetid, oh so twitchy and flesh looking now spawned a dancefloor with the exact same vibes. You don’t say anything, hardly surprised and just walk towards your spot when motioned to by her.

Then again, that’s a silly thing to say. Short of removing to budge where you stood for absolutely no reason, you were going to have to amuse this girl if you could, and to know the truth.

So, with a little sigh and a side-glance to NOT-Cirno, who’s still just silently observing me.

My attention is soon re-grabbed by the Faker when I notice that she changed form again, or at least she’s changed her clothes into a white short on the top, a red belt in between and a smooth, long dark pants towards which the end are adorned by little shoes of similar colour that make tap-tap sounds when they hit the ground. Of course, she still has your head, but more importantly…

What in the heck is a Tarantula dance? And if you can’t do that dance, correctly. Would that be an excuse for her to just kill you on the spot? That’s assuming a lot here, but still…. can’t afford to not b-

“Hey! I’m talking to you!” with a tap on your forehead and a shout, the faker regains your attention.

“Mhu, mhu, mhu. What were you thinking that’s so important you dare ignore me? Don’t you remember that you’re in extreme peril right now? I’m shocked you’ve got the guts to act s-”

“Yes, yes, let’s do that dance of yours.” You reply, disinterestedly.

“Oh, there it is again!” the Faker puts force in her hand again, making the little bones inside your fingers and the veins inside your hand feel extremely uncomfortable. “That conceitedness, I don’t like that. Don’t you think you’re getting cocky if you act so comfortable? It’s like you’re not afraid of me...”

“What if I’m not?” you don’t give a direct answer, but do admit that the more she talks, the more time it gives for your fear to be replaced with anger and annoyance and overall, a chill furiousness.

“Then I’d have to kill you, d’uh.” She again says the same way one talks about the weather.

“Then, I’m very afraid of you.” You reply, and before she can continue, “So, are we going to dance or not? I don’t mind you taking your time, but if you don’t do it now, then it might never happen.” You remind her of what she’s currently trying to do, redirecting the conversation back to a safer place.

“Hmm,” Silence is her answer.

“Dance with me, Master-Mind. It’s the only good memory you’ll have.” You repeat yourself, more firmly and squeeze her hand in the same way. Aware that it might be risky, but still doing it.

“Fine.” It does the job; the Faker forces her hand out of your own and taps the ground with one foot to check something. “Okay, everything’s ready! So, let’s dance once and for all Rumia!”

You don’t know how to dance though.

She doesn’t care, “I’ll teach you as we move!” even if that wasn’t meant to be an excuse in the first place. The mere thought of you not participating at this point is one that won’t be tolerated.

Now, you can only hope that this dance isn’t some dance of death or some other nonsense.

And it wasn’t.

It was something much worse.

https://youtu.be/LRWweVMNwiQ

A chaotic tempo of sound and instruments plays out of nowhere as the Faker engages in some sort of dancing manuever that makes her look like a duck that’s having a stroke, one foot up, one foot down, within an odd sort of tempo the girl is moving around without leaving her spot somehow.

Naturally, you’re forced to mimic said movement. To extreme difficulty, the moment you successfully pull off one move, the faker is already busy with the other one. The whole dancing shebang makes you question your sanity and why it is that your life has come to this point, but those thoughts are ones you sadly cannot amuse yet. For the Faker grabs one of your arms and just like that, the two of you are moving around in circles while kicking your feet in such an odd frenzy,

It’s like the two of you have spiders stuck inside your pants.

Ah.

“And that’s why it’s called the Tarantula Bite!” The faker giggles as both of your movements are starting to reach a sync, pleased by how you’re slowly letting the rhythm control you and what were once wild, chaotic movements slowly start to make sense to you, “Well, the dance is called Tarantella and the spider is the Tarantula but still….” The faker speaks up during this, about to say something nonsensical if you’re unlucky or something that makes sense to only her. “Ahem….”

Oh, even worse, it’s going to be a monologue.
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“Let me paint you a picture: a lively medieval village with peasants dancing, musicians fiddling and everyone downing vast quantities of wine under the glow of the summer sun. Sounds like a party, right? It was something more sinister: tarantism, a contagious boogie fever that struck southern Italian villages every year for centuries.” The faker speaks mid-dance, her focus or agility too great to be impaired by something as harmless as telling a story, “Here, you see the scapegoat.”

The patterns of some spider covered in the middle of what looks a spider-web appears in your head.

The faker didn’t change forms, or even changed her own posture, you’re just seeing the spider now.

Because she wanted you to, that's all she needed to, but that might just be a lie...

“Since the dancing plague was first described in the 11th century, the wild, feverish dancing of the tarantata (female sufferer) was blamed on spider bites. Specifically, it was ascribed to the venomous bite of the Apulian Lycosa tarantula. Puzzlingly enough, however, the Lycosa tarantula has no more venom than a bee’s stinger. Ain’t that wacky?” the girl doesn’t wait for an response, “Still, the spider’s bite was believed to be potentially lethal. The first signs of the disease were fatigue, apathy, and malaise. Once the victim began to slip away into a catatonic state, there was only one thing that could save them from succumbing to the poison: music!

The sufferer would be laid down on a sheet in the floor of her home and musicians brought in to play for her. They would strike up a tune, gradually increasing in tempo. As the music picked up, the victim would begin to roll back and forth on the sheet. Finally, she would leap up and begin to dance convulsively, flinging her limbs around and leaping across the room. As if she’s possessed or- “

“How is this relevant?” you ask, with no sign of obvious impatience. “I don’t mind hearing you talk, but if everything you’re going to say ends up unimportant in the end, then I can’t take you seriously.” And are still dancing too, mentally counting the amount of time that’s passing.

Said amount would be around five minutes. “Oh, it’s very relevant!” And though that kind of time should have been more than enough to save your butt, here you are listening to this girl ramble again, “For you see, Tarantism is no ordinary disease, it’s something extraordinary who’s mere infection resulted in sufferers seizing swords to slash their hands and feet, out of which their beautiful red substance was replaced by a black ooze.

Others held mirrors, using them to catch bright flashes of sunlight in a fit of madness as some loudly proclaimed that they felt like someone else was inside of them. Some would wrap themselves in vines or carry boughs dipped in water. Their chaotic dancing would continue for days, fuelled by plenty of wine, with only brief breaks to eat, bathe and sleep.

Once they had finally exhausted themselves, they would collapse to sleep it off; afterwards, they awoke remembering nothing of their illness. They were spared – at least for the year. Yet Tarantism was known to flare up again every summer; once bitten, you were never fully cured. And it wasn’t until the 20th century, that the story on how a spider bite behind this was deconstructed. For again, that spider has no such venom. So…. that still leaves a mystery.

If it’s not a viral disease, or the result of a spider’s venom. Then who was the culprit of such an odd thing? Is this not what someone would call an unexplained supernatural phenomenon?”

So, she’s saying that this must have been the work of a youkai then? You go ahead and ask.

“You could say that, but first, enough of the music and dancing!” she snaps a finger, and silence comes, then she stops dancing about as well, so she can put on a pose and continue talking.
“You’re not that good of a dancer, Rumia. But let’s get to the main subject now, your own special little reward that you’re oh so, pathetically struggling to obtain after all. Your holy grail after arduous trails, your golden after your seven labours, your big, fat, juicy, truth that you’ve been ---”

“Get to the point, please.”

“Fine, so...Tarantism is, as you might have realized by now. Nothing more than a Boogie illness, who’s true nature lies within the convenient name of a curse. You know what those are, right? Little hexes that make someone always trip their feet or perhaps some terrible condition that makes you lose all your teeth when you’re splashed by cold-water, yada, yada, you know the drill. But that’s not all of it either, see, there’s…. uh, there’s…. how do I explain this in easy-to-understand words?”

She claps her own cheek and then decides to just say in the shortest way possible, “It’s a curse that inflicts mania amongst those inflicted, so that they’ll act wildly to stimulate the output of their life-force, because the more you move and the more agitated you are, the more one can drain the energy out of people. It’s that kind of curse, which was the inspiration for the one you and many other happen to be under. You called it an ‘Anon’s touch’ but frankly, that’s not our names at all. Then again, who cares about such a little thing anyway? So, call it however the heck you want.”



“So, why inflict such a thing on an entire population for hundreds of years, you might ask. Well, the answer to that is, I don’t know. I’m not the one who invented it , just the one who saw some ‘blueprints’ that could have been improved to make this whole draining operation, more efficient.

Though I do know WHO made it possible, but first. Do you know what life-force is?”

Of course, you do, or at least you can make a guess, “The force…behind life? The stuff that keeps your body moving, breathing, not drop dead in a single instant? A generic catch-all term.”

“Correct.” Again, you hear a clap. “You could call it health, mana, ki, whatever. Let’s just say that if it’s something a natural living being possesses, then it’s something worth draining.

Hence the…” she trails off for a moment, clapping her hand once again and it’s with just that movement on its own that you feel like something inside of you is answering her call.

“Anon items, again, that’s not their name and I find it uncreative so allow me to correct you: That thing you’re holding is not some dumb item with no name, nay, it’s an art piece! The perfect mouse trap! Using nothing more than temptation and idiotic curiosity, it fools a person into wielding it. After which it will latch onto them and slowly drain them of their life-force, growing stronger and more powerful on its own as it is doing so while also sending fragments of power back to this place, in a way that makes it an obvious swindle. But don’t worry, for the exchange isn’t complete one-sided.

Once every little sip and sap of power inside a power has been fully drained, it will completely consume the person. Giving said fool a new chance at life as one of our own in a way, of course they’d still have their own memories and some of their abilities, but all loyalties lie with us. Giving us in the end, not only a source of energy but a potential recruit all for the price of one mistake that the person won’t ever forgive themselves in their remaining short life. Did you understand all that?”

“Not really.” You get the vibe and know this much already but that still leaves the question off…

“Oh, then what would you like more details on?” she says, surprisingly helpful.

“Why would you do this? What’s the point of this whole incident?”

“Suck and bye, bye. D’uh. Man, you’re dense…though you prattle quite well for an otherworldly creature.”

Despite all temptations and irritation in your head, you don’t tell her that she is doing the same from your perspective. If you uttered those words, then the ‘equal treatment of living beings,’ which you piled up until now, will break apart. You can’t lash out at her. Regardless, trying to push on any further than this would be dangerous, so you kept my mouth shut and waited. The peerage title of omission. In the hopes that she would continue speaking.

She does, she’s a real fan of unnecessary words and gestures. Even if that may come from a sensation of complete dominance in the situation and especially over you. “You’re so curious that you can’t make the words come out of your mouth, huh? Well, fine, I’ll indulge you anyway.

Like I said, the whole point of this incident is a suck and good-bye, like how some seagull will steal a loaf of bread and screw off when given the opportunity, so too was this whole thing nothing more than an impersonal attempt (Which happens to be successful) to suck out the energy of this land and its inhabitants. All that, so some fat whore of a gourmet can indulge on all we gathered before we just peace out, pretend none of this happened and leave you all with a big mess to clean up.”

“So, how is it a scam of an incident then? And what did you mean by fat…you know.”

“It’s a scam, because the longer it goes on. The more profits we obtain, if we can artificially lengthen this whole stuff with unnecessary side-quests, random bosses, and even manipulate those ‘heroes’ into coming at places that are never-ending dungeons like this one, then all is going good.

As for the other part, isn’t it obvious who I’m talking about?” she taps her head and points at NOT-Cirno, who again looks pissed off the moment she said the swear-word. “I’m talking about our whore of- “

“DON’T CALL HER THAT!!!” a fierce shout envelops the entire room, deafening the both of you, “I TOLD YOU TO NOT SAY THAT! I WON’T ALLOW IT! I WON’T ALLOW IT!” but that’s not all, as an enraged NOT-Cirno has crossed the distance between you two so she can firmly look down, if not glare with the eyes of a thousand demons towards her fellow spawn-brood. “SO, TAKE IT BACK…”

The girl she’s addressing shrugs indifferently, before gaining a smile again and glaring back at her. “Take what back? The fact you don’t realize that as nice and kind as mom appears to be, she’s in the end nothing more than a bitch in sheep’s clothing that gives other people the dirty work? That despite all of this, she’s doing nothing more than chill with her fat ass at some seat while I do the hard work around here? That even though I’m following her plan, with all my efforts. She’d undo our lives the moment we’re done with our purpose here? Well, guess what? The only thing I’d take back if you don’t back off, shut up, and for the love of god, stop holding that FORM. Then I’ll just kill you this instant and ask for a new sister the same way one orders for fast-food and gain it in nothing more than minute or two. Because that’s the truth, SIS. This FUN incident you’re talking about would have had the same result, just a different presentation. So, in the end. Amongst all of you disgusting creatures, I’m the only ‘Anonymous’ here that’s actually honest for once!”

Such a reaction puts NOT-Cirno off her track, but still, she’s not backing off. “Why I- “

“I DON’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY!” Finally put on the edge, the faker grows into a taller monster for only a second, turning into a squid-like creature with eyes on their appendages, razor teeth on the tips of their members and a dark skin that’s constantly leaking ooze, as their very form feels completely unnatural and made on the spot, as your own face still lies between her jaws, currently used to glare a new hole into NOT-Cirno, “Don’t you get it, dear? Don’t you understand how your pathetic display affects me? Do you not understand how it feels to have a more eminent position passed away from me only because you’re the more obedient fool? Well, fine. I guess, I’ll spell it out in proper words.” Regaining some of her composure, part of her body turns more humanoid again, yet the squid-like features remain. “Dear little sister…” her voice turns sweet, and a gentle smile appears on her face, “I, really, really, lo…” but you already know…

“Loathe, loathe, loathe, loathe, loathe, loathe, loathe,” that it’s a façade.
“Despise, despise, despise, despise, despise, despise, despise,” one she can’t keep up anymore.
“Hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate,” and now she’s being honest.

“HATE you all so much that I just CAN’T STAND IT! I hate you all so much that I want to slaughter you! Make you suffer! Ha, ha, hahahahahhahahahahaaaa!!” very honest, laughing as well.

So honest, that what looks like your head splits itself apart in two so a larger eye can glare murder towards NOT-Cirno and speak with a killing intent so intense, that her appearance is slipping and stunning you on your feet, making you unable to mov-, no, it’s not that you can’t. Not at all.

It’s that you’re afraid, feeling such a ridiculous amount of malice is making your senses go into overdrive, every part of your body is telling you to run away or you’re going to die.

Even so, you don’t run away.

Your feet refuse to budge and your face doesn’t look the tiniest bit inconvenienced, the same can’t be said for NOT-Cirno, who’s completely overwhelmed by the hate-filled monologue or more like, ramble coming from the Faker on how she hates her, hates you, hates everybody with a pulse really and that it’s been so hard for her to hold back all this killing intent that’s been slowly gathering about because her mother told her to do this job, or something.

It's frankly pathetic, to see someone lose their composure that easily.
At the very least, it destroys any feeling of 'master-minding' if that makes sense to you.

It’s still ongoing by the way, “No, shut up! I don’t care what you have to say! I don’t care if you’re going to cry! I don’t care if you’re going to die if you try to fight me! You don’t understand, I’m doing this whole job as nothing more than a joke, leaving all these easy passages that lead to here, letting the Hakurei and her friends easily enter this place thanks to shit security, not even trying to hide how shady those stupid items are. Every part of it is blatant fuck up to give that whore the finger!!

Do you finally understand? NONE OF YOU MATTER TO ME! This entire world, this whole gensokyo, it means nothing to me. This means nothing to me; you mean nothing to me! Rumia, Cirno, any other broad and their dumb friends, not a single person inside this place means a single shit to me! You’re all so annoying and so stupid, it’s no wonder I’m trying to stay away from you all as much as possible. Therefore, this whole incident can be solved in the first place, do you realize that?

Compared to all you shit-lings, I’m the good guy! Did you hear me? IM THE GOOD GUY! I am the hero! I am the winner, of, of, OF EVERYTHING! The rebel! the one who stand against an unjust system! Isn’t that the kind of character that people idolize the most?!? SO SHUT UP AND PRAISE ME! LICK MY FEET! THANK ME FOR THE HONOUR OF COMING HERE AND STOP BEING UNGRATEFUL!!”

Ah, she’s losing her mind. It’s almost funny how the only thing it took for that to happen was for her someone she sees as beneath her to continuously challenge her in a way that doesn’t amuse her.

That said, if you don’t interfere. She’s about to slaughter NOT-Cirno in front of you, and though the latter girl looks ready to finally put up a fight, you don’t really believe in her odds.

So, you do, even if it’s not practical but because it’s right, “Stop.” You put yourself between the two with your arms raised protectively. “You said you’d give me answers, not some temper tantrum.” You talk to the Faker as if you couldn’t care less about this dilemma and just want more answers.

This false indifference makes her stop in her track and stare you in the eyes instead. Her own now a golden colour inside which lies a feeling of pure raw hate, so pure that you can feel the burns.

Even so, you don’t look away. Staring right back at her with a calm face. “You’re better than this.”
She’s not, but that’s the only thing you can think off for her to not murder you right now.

Still, it’s enough to make her blink. Stare at you some more, before putting an arm above her own head while cackling again in a more sadistic humour kind of way rather than the ‘I’m going to absolutely murder everyone’ sensation that she was giving off just a few seconds ago.

“Sorry you had to see that, Rumia. Can’t help but feel like I lost my temper a little bit there.”

“It’s fine,” you reply, and shove the back of your shoulder into Not-Cirno’s stomach the moment she tries to speak up again, “Getting angry happens to the best of us, so why don’t you…”

“Continue monologuing?” The faker lets outs a giggle again, “Or continue what I was talking about? I’d bet you’d like that…. but no,” she flies upwards, looking down at the both of you.

“I’m done talking, frankly, I have to say I’m done even looking or breathing in the same room as you two. So, here’s how it’s going to be. Because you were a good guest and frankly, talking to you was fun. I’m going to give you one last REAL question, one that I will answer with the absolute truth and nothing more than the truth. After which I’ll kill the both of you immediately afterwards.

That’s it, no more other gimmicks, no more playing around, no more time wasting.

Fulfil your last thought of curiosity before joining oblivion.”


Great, once again the situation has turned into a standoff-

“Just kidding! None of you are getting anything! So, brace yourselves!

For the final ride in your pathetic lives.”

The faker declares as she aims her hand at the heavens, spell-card in tow, which happens to be the last words and sights you perceive before the surroundings start to twitch about again, shifting, stuttering like glassware that’s being tampered with.

It’s like wherever you are in is being forced into a raging river.
And any sense of direction is starting to disappear in that typhoon.

This can’t be good.
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castle warp
And you’re right, though you don’t know yet.

Nor have a way of knowing it, but let's not be bothered by that.

That the ‘Ice Tower’ is being consumed by a red aura?

That’s what it looks like, whether it’s a portal or a gigantic individual consuming the whole place is something you don’t know and something you won’t need to worry about either.
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anon world empty
For wherever it’s going to, is a place that you will head to as well.
A shame you couldn’t say goodbye to this blue dessert space stuff.
But it’s not like you’d ever miss it anyway, so eh. Let’s go back to you.
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Final fight between two dark beings
Oh, there you are. Completely unharmed, without a single scratch on your body.

Yet the first sight you see is that of a landscape consisting of various souls that are burning in eternity in a never-ending purple fire, whose identities are unknown to you so you can’t tell if these things are victims of circumstance or anonymous creatures waiting to be born. But frankly neither answer would be a fun one to know, so let’s go ahead and ignore them.

The ground beneath you consists of an oily substance, solid enough for your feet to not completely sink in. Yet, feeling if you were to kick the ground with all your might, then half of your leg would splurge into it. As if that is not enough, the ground repeatedly beeps with a rhytmn that’s like that of a heart but again, you’re gotten used to the uncanny already so let’s just ignore that too.

“Ah, so you’re finally awake.” What you can’t ignore is the creature in front of you, it’s a black-winged monster who looks like someone put a bat and a lizard inside a blender filled to the brim with oil, yet the face on their crotch and the humour accompanying it, clearly means it’s the faker.

“Good, good! Otherwise, I’d have had to kill you just like that, I figured I’d make lil sis here forcefully watch as I slowly extract the life and will out of your carcass and that’s what I’m going to do.”

Never mind humour, the way she said that was devoid of joy or sarcasm. “Oh, yeah. I’m done joking and even though this isn’t even my strongest form, this much should just be enough to annihilate you before the Hakurei can come here and finally end this stupid game.”

“If you want it to end so badly, then why don’t you just let me live and cooperate with everyone else?” you ask, out of genuine curiosity and for the sake of not dying.

“Nah, I don’t care about talking anymore. This is the part where you die, so make your prayers, for 3 seconds from now. I’m going to absolutely ruin you.” You heard the words yourself, miss. “It was fun to have you, it really was but I’m afraid that if you really love someone, then eventually you must kill them. Those are the rules! Or something…frankly I don’t care, just die already.”

So, there’s no point in trying to fool her, instead you look beyond her and see NOT-Cirno on the other side, heavily bruised on well, the face part of her body but other than that, the glare in her eyes and the way she’s slowly standing up implies that she’s been fighting the Faker herself, got her ass kicked and is now despite that, ready for a round two, so that’s a neat thing to know.

Still, your heart is beating fast because of the situation. There’s no more talking this out, there’s no more hoping anyone else will save you at the last second, there’s only one thing you can do.

And that’s fight with your everything and hope for the best!

Then you instantly die, the end.

Though…that may not be true at all. Just because you can’t fight hard, doesn’t mean you can’t fight smart.

Surely there’s a way out of here, or perhaps teaming up with NOT-Cirno could be helpful.

You, uh…or else you could…. hm.

Okay, let’s not kid ourselves.

You’ve got no idea what to do right now. But if you don’t do anything then you’d be fucked, if you do something that’s dumb then you’d be double fucked. So, let’s grit our teeth, clench our muscles.

And engage in the final battle like a big girl! You’ve come this far after all, so don’t end it here!

Is what you’d like to say, but to be honest. You’re scared, you’ve never been this scared before in your entire life so there’s no way for you to even pretend you’ve that kind of bravado.

Even so, you’re still going to fight and act. Because you must, because it must end.

And anonymous this, power level that, ignore all of that. You’re going to achieve victory.


[ ] WRITE IN.

Note: Yeah, I’m just going to say it. This is in a way, the final battle. Or at least, the last battle that HAS to be fought in. Whether you go fight wildly with your everything, continue to try to stall for time or do something else is up to you.
I forgot to add one of those fighting game timers, so add in a imaginary 60 second counter and be aware that once that reaches 0, you'll win as long as you're not about to die.

Cuz thanks to your stalling it's been reduced to that instead of say 300.
I'm writing this while being a bit sleepy, but yeah. This has been fun to write and though I cringed at occasions.
The least I can do is finish this all the way to the end. Thank you for getting so far.
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[x] Team up with Not-Cirno
-[x] Is Not-Cirno strong enough to get this sealing ribbon off of us? If yes, get the ribbon off.
[x] Blind Meatball God by sticking darkness to whatever parts of her body have eyeballs.
[x] Focus on dodging and taking potshots at her from a distance. Not-Cirno is almost certainly better at close combat than we are. Maybe aim for the giant eye, that thing looks vulnerable.
[x] Put crown on Meatball God if an opportunity to do so presents itself.

Lets face it, we are up shit creek without a paddle. If Not-Cirno can't get our ribbon off of us to power us up, we are pretty much screwed. Still, if we are going to fight, we might as well play to our strengths by annoying and distracting our opponent while Not-Cirno does most of the heavy lifting.

If videogames have taught me anything, its that shooting giant eyeballs with lasers is the best way to fight boss monsters.
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[X] Team up with Not-Cirno
-[X] See if Not-Cirno is strong enough to remove the sealing ribbon.
[X] Take to the skies
-[X] Blind the Faker using strategic darkness on the eyeballs
--[X] Make fakes using shadows to distract and confuse.
-[X] Dodge and Shoot
--[X] Aim for the Faker’s eyeballs
--[X] Avoid hitting Not-Cirno
[X] Mock the Faker, LOUDLY and with PERSONAL ATTACKS
-[X] Mention how all her efforts would have been impossible without help
-[X] Insult her ability to control her emotions and, thus, others
-[X] Cut deeply using pity, most likely to fully enrage her, talking about how she has no one to rely on, how we’re most likely the closest one she has to a friend. That even Not-Cirno has a friend in us.
[X] Apply crown.exe to the Faker
-[X] Not-Cirno applying it to the Faker
-[X] Or we can pick it up, use flight to gain elevation and then gravity, to turn ourselves into a rod of God.

How far away is the crown from Not-Cirno or us? How far away is everybody from each other?

>The rebel! the one who stand against an unjust system! Isn’t that the kind of character that people idolize the most?!?

Seija wannabe. On another note, I have been trying to figure out who exactly the mother of the Faker and Not-Cirno is. Okina is the closest I can think of a character who can make creatures at will and sits around.

>I forgot to add one of those fighting game timers, so add in a imaginary 60 second counter and be aware that once that reaches 0, you’ll win as long as you’re not about to die.

Outta curiosity, would it have been possible for us to stall long enough to hit 0 before reaching this battle?

>>32084
>Lets face it, we are up shit creek without a paddle. If Not-Cirno can’t get our ribbon off of us to power us up, we are pretty much screwed.

Nah, we’re doing great! Plus, the creek was when the Meatball God’s true identity was revealed. We’re in the rapids now. We stalled like a champ, successfully engineered a Cain and Abel situation, and gained information about the incident with most of our limbs intact. Frankly, besides the failed crown stabbing, I’d say we handled this situation which we got ourselves into, quite well.
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>>32085

> Okina is the closest I can think of a character who can make creatures at will and sits around.

As far as I can understand it, Okina's ability is more to manipulate things that already exist via their "energy". "Making creatures at will" seems closer to Keiki's ability, though her creatures seem to be limited in the forms they can take.
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__rumia_touhou_drawn_by_senba_chidori__sample-602d
>Time

Yeah, if you had not called for the MBG so soon, she'd have made a talk about how you're truly alone now and very heavily imply that now the time is for you to try to call her. (Which would have been another 30 seconds down the drain) And if you refused to do so for some reason, she'd laugh her guts out and outright hurt you as proof that you on your own ain't worth shit.

Which would have left you with 0 seconds on the clock and bam, you win. Which is more an reward for your guts than anything cause yeah, even dumb yet brave decisions are rewarded here.

>Distance.

Imagine like a gymn room, NOT-Cirno and her crown are at the other side, MBG on the middle and you're on the front. Moving from one spot would take 5 seconds of running so about a few meters.

Also, yeah, you're doing absolutely stellar. Save of fucking up on purpose now, you'd be fine I think.





Eh, teaming up is a given in this situation.

If you can’t use raw strength to win a fight, then you’ve got to use knowledge and when you lack in that too, then the best next thing are numbers!

One problem though, you’re on one side of the MBG while NOT-Cirno’s at the other.

And your opponent does not look like she’ll warmly move to the side if you ask her nicely. If anything, the way she’s glaring at you and obviously gathering energy within herself is blatantly announcing to you that she’s waiting for you to make a move so she can quickly undo it.

With a big laser to the face, or like the flapping of her wings? You don’t know why she took that form to be honest, but does it really matter? Nope, it doesn’t. So,

Let’s use all your power to get past her at once! Like a nimble monkey, the first thing you do is jump to your left-side, hitting the ground and rolling about as a large red laser blitzes from the Faker’s eye at the place where you used to be, course that’s not all, for at the same time you quickly gather some of the darkness inside of you, concentrate it’s energy and shoot it out towards her!

It hits her right on the BIG mula! “This won’t stop me in the slightest!” you can tell because she just shouted a generic line at you, but you’re not going to let dialogue slow you down. So, with just as quick a move, you get up, grow airborne and aim your own blue laser straight at her other eye.

Except this one isn’t as effective, because it totally missed her just now, because she dodged, because she can still see from the lower part of her body and-wait, why are you making this boring?

This is the final fight! The climax! Shouldn’t you fight with your absolute everything? Like swiftly flying about while shooting barrage after barrage of colourful bullets back and forth! Something like,

The crazy number of bullets that are being shot your way right now! Blue, yellow, green, a bunch of bullets that fly about in a wavy way, like going up then down, are coming straight at you with no direction in mind, mostly because she can’t see, but even so, if she could see, then.

She’d be absolutely annoyed on how you simply fly straight up to avoid all those things, which wait, she is, seeing how the face on her crotch is glaring at you and…ooooooooooooooooooooh.

“Yeah, I can still you see, dumbas.” She confirms what you’ve just discovered, and with a single flap of her wings, grows airborne, and…you just shoot another ball of darkness towards her, which she calmly attempts to kick aside, only for it explode in a bigger smoke of darkness to blind her anyway.

“And now you can’t. Funny how that works.” you reply while ignoring a very rude word she just let out inside the orb of darkness that covers her entire body now, still while banter is fun and all, and the fact you’ve managed to disable her vision feels like good news. Now isn’t the time to get cocky.

Except, you take an opportunity to turn around for a moment, take out your moon-light ray spell card and summon two blue balls that shoot a continuous laser where the faker eyes should be, which elicits far more graphical words than before and outright knocks the sucker backwards.

Yeah, turns out having a huge eye makes an easy target, even if said target is covered in darkness.

As satisfying as that was, the girl is still holding back, so let’s just go ahead and try to get to the other side before the Faker goes all, ‘THIS IS MY FINAL FORM’ before you’re ready to handle it.

So, you do. Not get to the other side already but try to do so. Mostly by like…just flying straight ahead? Sure, there’s a barrage of bullets shot around half-hazardly but you’re more than experienced enough to get past such a thing if it’s not being properly aimed with. And that you do, by waiting for an easy slip past the rowdy bunch and then going past, so uh, yeah, you succeeded.

And NOT-Cirno’s right over there too! Well, more like below you, you’d wonder why she hasn’t gotten back into the fray already but thinking about such things mid-battle is bad idea, if not an easy way to ask for someone to attack you while you’re in the middle of unnecessary though-

Which is something you’re doing right now, “Don’t get cocky Rum!” and taking advantage that mistake, The faker shoots out a bunch of chains towards your position, something she shouldn’t even be able to see, but even so her chains go for their mark, miss, all except for one, who grabs your leg with the intent to squeeze kaput like a grape, but doesn’t do so, for the sake of pulling you closer towards the faker instead. “Just because I can’t see you, that doesn’t mean I don’t know your general location! Besides….” She trails off, and something looks like it’s boiling beneath her legs.

Smaller creatures with wings as black as her own, accompanied with only a single red eye move out of the darkness, staring and coming your way with a light in said eyes that imply you’re about to be skewered by a bunch of lasers if you don’t get out of your new binding. “Who said I’m limited to only one body? I’ve got the item that’s inside of you, myself, and more of myself and this entire area to play around, so why don’t you go ahead and gi- “you know what, let’s not listen to her rant.

Also, did she just give birth aggressively?
Or are those just mini-hers in a way?
Let’s not think about that either.

Instead, you struggle against your new foot-bracelet, noticing that it looks very similar to the chains that you’ve been using yourself before but refuse to let the notion of your own body working against stop you. That doesn’t make sense, it clearly came from HER and not you, but whether that’s a possibility in the first place and if so, why doesn’t she just disable you straight away is not the kind of notion you should be having while in this kind of s-RUMIA ACT ALREADY!!

You do, by just slashing your leg off. With a single strike, it flies off, black blood pours out of it but more importantly you’re free to move about before certain opponents can attack your ass.

So, you fly even faster towards NOT-Cirno, only for a bunch of curvy lasers, the size of your own body each, to shoot straight into your path like we’re playing some hit the spot game, though again you just dodge it, you’ve played the bullet hell game plenty of times before, so you’re not TOTAL GARBAGE at it, unlike some other person who’s shots are all shot out in random patterns, and are far too big to even have a chance of hitting the spot you’ll be due to them being far too slow.

“It’s like you’ve never played a danmaku game before.” You allow a snark out of you, as you’ve safely reached the other side with little trouble despite all the hype the faker gave. Well, safe may be an over-statement, so you don’t bother waiting for her answer and just approach NOT-Cirno.

“Hey, you!” having enough sense to not actually call her that, you notice that despite her already standing up and observing the two of you, SHE HASN’T HELPED YET. “What gives! Hurry up and help!”

“Oh, I’m sorry.” The girl quickly apologizes, removing the thousand-yard glare she was doing and puts herself back up a bit more. Well, more like in front of you, after which she calmly, with what looks like it takes absolutely no effort other than scrunching her eyebrows, wills the barrage of lasers coming your way into stopping inches before the two of you, turns them around 90 degrees for no real reason while they’re covered in a red hue and shoots them straight back at the creatures. Destroying them instantly, “I was…recuperating. This is…not…something I WANT to do, e-even if!”

Whatever sisterly bond she was about to talk about is rudely interrupted, as someone else who wasn’t destroyed in any way, simply bum-rushes the both of you with a barrage of kicks. Well, not really you, you but more like NOT-Cirno herself and you just happened to be behind her, so f.

Cursing that notion, you go deeper into the ground, yes, you said deeper as the momentum of you being pushed back is just enough to make the oily ground act a bit like…jelly? You’re not sure what you’re trying to say here, but in short, once you were on the ground, now you got your ass sinking deeper into said ground because of the momentum, only to finally be spit back out of it, and be relatively unharmed anyway as you simply stop the fall by flying on the spot when you’re back up.

Can’t say the same for the other two, “JUST STOP RESISTING ALREADY!” as both uh, ‘daughters’ are engaging in a grasping tournament, aka their hands and feet are intertwined in such a way that they’re forced to try to overpower one another, and whether it’s through having more muscle or just being more malicious, the Faker seems to be in the winning side of this endeavour. “Of course, I’m winning! I’m superior to her! And I’m superior to you as well!” oh, and it looks like she heard you.

Good, because that means you can commit the easiest move in the century: Getting into HER head for once. With that in mind, you sit on purpose while watching them, as if to say that you’re confident in the Faker’s loss, “Superior? Suuure, that’s a funny thing to say for someone who couldn’t have achieved any of this without the stuff and help that they’ve been given.”

“Hah, do you really think I don’t get what you’re trying to do?” Despite claiming to not be affected by that, the Faker still turns her head to you while in the middle of this contest, “You, the little cockroach that I’ve so easily moved everywhere I wanted her to, with nothing more than- “

“If you’re going to say, ‘by manipulating her emotions’ then don’t bother!” you interrupt her and raise your head so you can look down on her with your nose upturned, like some nerd. “Besides, nah, you’re not that much of a mastermind. Even though I’m here, I grant you that, you still managed to get so into this that you foolishly told your own sister about it, and not only do you not then try to fool her or at least assure she won’t fight you for it. You get so offended by what you perceive to be audacity from her part, which it wasn’t, she was trying to see if there’s anything remotely good left inside of you, mind you, bu- “

“Why are you talking about me, while I’m HERE?” NOT-Cirno angrily interrupts, not one to really want to engage in a conversation in the middle of this. “Also, why are you NOT HELPING NOW?!”

“But you lost control over your emotion and finally showed your true self!” you finish your sentence first, and then motion a small apology to NOT-CIRNO, “Sorry, just, uh, believe in me, this is just a- “

“Desperate attempt to sway my attention in the hopes that this will somehow, in some ludicrous manner anger me to such a point that it’d make me unable to crush you sister, which not only is inaccurate.” She leans over her inferior sister, putting more force into her legs and successfully pushes them to their knees, or well, bottom of the torse because they don’t have legs. “But impossible, as whatever this true-self you’re talking about would be nothing more than another façade upon fa- “

“You’re just crazy, girl. Like, completely out of your mind, you act like a mastermind but the moment the slightest inconvenience comes to you, you start shouting about how you’ll kill everyone and how you hate life and bla, bla, all that crazy girl talk that clearly shows you’ve got no self-control whatsoever. Not only that, but your ‘manipulations’ weren’t even subtle in the first place, nothing you did was, and I’m surprised that not even a toddler managed to outsmart someone like you!”

That has no effect, the girl just smirks. “Despite that, you’ve still been fooled, despite that, I’ve crushed youkai mountain and despite that, I’ve got a Tanuki force ready to do the same to that silly hospital you’ve been in. If toddlers are really that smart, then how come you’re the first one here?”

You don’t let that get to you, nor do you believe anything she just said, even if it is possible. “Because you wanted me to come here, you’re a sadistic ass who had nothing better to do with her time than to torture someone that they see as beneath them and somehow that makes you think you’re a hero? Do you really think anyone would forgive your actions if you said you only meant to do good?”

“They don’t need to forgive me,” the smile on the girl grows, “If anything, I’m the hero of the ‘anons’ as you call them so it doesn’t really matter, heck, you girls may shout in pain, scream for mercy, cry in agony and anything like that would be nothing more than a sweet symphony to my ears. Actually…think of it like this, I’m the light of my side yet the darkness of yours and you’re the light of your own side yet the darkn-”

Yeah, no. “I don’t care about any philosophical bullshit you are about to throw out, you’re just a lonely pyscho that wants to kill people and has no friends. If anything, I’m the closest thing to one you’ll ever have, and that’s because you were stalking me for a long, long time only for me to despise you with every sensation in my body anyway. Like I don’t even know if you’re doing this on purpose or if you’re like fucked in the head. Cause, really that’s what you look like. Someone fucked in the head, someone bizarre. Someone who just wants to hurt and kill people, a crazy bitch.”

The smile remains, unfazed. “Okay an- “

“And man the worst thing of all, not only do I hate you, but I also PITY you.”

And it’s gone, “Excuse me what?” the girl outright stiffens too.

“I said that I pity you, like man, you’re weird, you’re super weird, but pathetic too.”

“How am I- “

“Did your daddy hit you or something? You know I once wanted to ask something like that to Marisa, since she’s some weirdo that lives in a forest on her own as joke, but to you, I’m genuinely asking.”

“Why, you- “

“Or does your mother just not love you? Is that why you’re calling her a whore repeatedly? Is this whole adventure nothing more than some edgy phase that you’re going through in a desperate attempt to get her attention or something extremely stupid like that?”

“WHY WOULD I EV- “

“Because it really sounds like that, ah! Even there, you’re shouting now! Did I hit a fuse? Is this because you have mommy issues? Well, fricking boo-hoo-hoo to you then, bucko. That’s so sad, which I genuinely but also very sarcastically mean a lot!”

Her grip lowers on NOT-Cirno, as she’s fully focused on you now. At least you assume so, cause again she’s covered in a ball of darkness, but the intense stare you feel helps define that, “I will murder you for this.” She states completely matter-of factly alongside an intense cold. “I was going to rough you up a bit, maybe break you too and let you live the rest of your remaining life as my pet, but you’ve just gone and said the unforgive- “

“LALALALALALA, I can’t hear mommy girls!” again, you don’t care. “Just get outta here loser, LALALALAL! You’re more pathetic than a sandworm! LALALALALLALAALALALALLALALA!”

“FINE, I was going to be methodical and cordial about this but seeing how you’re- “

“What part of I’m not listening to mommy girls do you not understand?!?” you interrupt again, and, because your darkness isn’t doing a lot to her anyway, you remove it so she can see the rude gesture you’re giving her. “Just get the heck outta here before Reimu, Marisa, literally any strong person in Gensokyo of which there are MANY comes out of nowhere to go kick your ass already!”

“Hah, as if that could stop me. Not even dying would prevent me from rising again.”

“Yeah, the only thing that could stop you is THERAPY!”

“OH, FUCK YOU!” she disengages from NOT-Cirno and rushes at you.

“NO, FUCK YOU!” so naturally, you immediately fly backwards and start blasting her.

“FUCK YOUUUUUUU!!” but she doesn’t care about the bullets hitting her, too enraged by what you said that she just tanks the shots and is ready to crush you into tiny pieces if she gets to you.

Time craws to a halt, at this moment, well, again not really, it’s more like everything feels super-slow because your senses are going into hyper-drive, but you know that if you don’t hit this moving target on the huge eye that’s quite easy to hit, which you just did and oh, she just fell again.

And she stopped moving, mostly cause there’s a crown on her head. One you didn’t even put on her yourself so how is that even pos- “THANKS for the HELP, FRIEND.” A sarcastic voice says it all.

That of NOT-Cirno, the girl or well, the thing or the girl-thing pops up from behind the Faker. “Well…I mean a little bit of it…got angry at first at your NOT helping, but then opportunity came so…” and lets out a shrug while you go out you slowly approach her. “Voila? We…won? Is this a victory?”

…That’s a good question, one you’d honestly feel a bit frustrated towards regardless of its answer. So, you look at the Faker who’s lying on the floor face-first, ass in the sky and who’s not moving because she’s totally been disabled by the putting of some crown on her head.



That was sarcasm.

“I think she’s faking it.” You reply to NOT-Cirno.

“No, shit.” And NOT-Cirno looks at you as if you’re a moron. “She…hasn’t changed at all, but…why is she on the ground then? Does it work or is she trying to fool us?”

Honestly, there’s only one way to find out.

“Hey, pal.” You keep your friend’s attention and point at the Ribbon on your head, “Remove this for me, would ya?” and figure that you should use this opportunity to try and ‘power up’ if possible.

“Why?” of course she’d ask that.

“So, I can unlock my truest potential, which may or may not be there and finish this fight!”

“But we already won though?”

“OR DID WE?” loud sarcasm aside, you're half relieved, half suspicouis and half dissapointed on how this 'ended'. You've heard the stories of amazing duels inside strange realms that others have gone through, bullets that are shot in patterns so dangerous, themes oh so exciting and inspiring! All of it coming together to make a satisfying climax! That ends it all!

Instead, you get this.

You'd make a joke about how reality is dissapointing, but even this wouldn't be an excuse towards it.

Cause if this is genuinely the end, then your whole adventure has been shit from start to finish.

“Ah, true…” unaware of your feelings, NOT-Cirno considers your question, “Okay.” And just agrees to it, because why wouldn’t she. “It’s a favour returned.” Because she totally owes you, yeah. "Cause you showed that jerk good!"

"Hold on, aren't you like conflicted on how you fought your own sister?"

"She...said she never loved me and that she was going to kill me. That's a...deal-breaker."

"Really?"

"...No, but STILL. Even if she's bad, beating her up was good. Means she can get punished and find help after!"

And changing the subject before you can interrogate her more on her feelings, the girl puts one hand on your ribbon and just pulls it, pulling you up as well because your hair is attached to the thing and ow, ow, it’s not a fun time for your cranial in non-direct words.

Well, the first attempt was a failure, so she tries it again. Which meets the same result, after which she tries to like to disintegrate it but seeing how every failed attempt harmed you instead, you dodge just in time because you don’t want to play the gamble of your life in such a ridiculously easy way to die.

Still, back to more important matters: You shoot the Faker right where she’s at because you don’t trust any part of her, whether she’s standing or sitting, except she doesn’t budge from the shot.

So, you shoot her again. With a big laser and a few bullets. Then again, to no avail.

Conclusion: Shooting her does nothing. Even NOT-Cirno picking her up and moving her about like a snowball doesn’t make her twitch or even grunt, she’s just stuck on the floor with a hate-filled expression on her face and then out of nowhere, she explodes into clusters of dark smoke.

Dark smoke that just moves around the room for a bit, stays still for a moment and then all join at once at the middle of the map, pressing together like sand in a machine to transform into,
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File 166249817227.png - (89.56KB, 244x302, Totally not smhuck bait.png)
Totally not smhuck bait
A sword on a pedestal?

Resting on top of an altar of black marble is a blade the size of three men, crafted with careful care using a dark metal.

Except for the red gem in the middle of it, its design is deceptively simple yet beautiful in its ominousness.

Its very presence oozes an oppressing magic that makes the air heavy and make your hair stand.

It's like having electricity running on your skin just from its proximity.

Just laying eye upon it makes a part of you feel like you're about to fire up.

Yet another part screams at you to ignore it, to stay as far away as possible from the thing because it’s obviously a trap that you shouldn’t fall for twice.

Fricking D'UH.

Obvouisnesss aside.

Right before it stands a stone tablet with conveniently easy to understand text.

Saying:

Seek you the world?

Seek you power?

Does your soul despise peace and thirst for more?

Does your soul cry for destruction and conquest?

We grant you the power to ruin the world. The power of true darkness.

We crown you the new ???? King, sitting on a throne of corpses and ash.


[ ] Pick it up, it’s totally NOT a trap, no sir, It’s completely and utterly safe.
[ ] Just wait the remaining 10 seconds, d’uh. This shouldn’t even be a choice.
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[x] Do not touch the sword.

Isn't that the same sort of stuff the chainsaw promised us? That didn't turn out too well.
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Rumia The Black Swordsman
[X] Ignore the sword

Though I am certainly tempted to choose the option of pulling the sword out and choosing to have a shiny war trophy, it is a horrible idea from experience. Moreover, there is this
>the size of three men
We are missing a leg and are smoll, it is way too big for us. We might have to be worried about Not-Cirno pulling that sword out if one considers that it is built more to her size than ours. Actually, since we are now allies, we can ask Not-Cirno about her mom, her thoughts about the new state of her sister, and this incident in general while we wait.

>You've heard the stories of amazing duels inside strange realms that others have gone through, bullets that are shot in patterns so dangerous, themes oh so exciting and inspiring! All of it coming together to make a satisfying climax! That ends it all!
>Instead, you get this.

Shoot! The only person able to witness our victory over the Faker was Not-Cirno; how will we boast about it later without anyone doubting us? I guess we can embellish the ending to make it a bit more epic, though.

>You do, by just slashing your leg off. With a single strike, it flies off, black blood pours out of it but more importantly you’re free to move about before certain opponents can attack your ass.

Did Rumia, in the beginning, have the determination to cut off a leg? Because if not, damn, some guts have been built up over the story’s course. Also, can Youkai bleed out, or does that not apply since they are made up of magic and stuff? Do we just hobble around now? Are we still bleeding? Can we use the lost leg as a handheld weapon?

>she explodes into clusters of dark smoke.

Well, shoot, there goes my hope of looting her body for that crystal she offered earlier. Probably for the best, her sister would've likely objected to us going through her body to find the crystal, and the Faker might have been lying about its properties.
Reading what I wrote above, I realize it sounds like looting for the next hit of something. Not-Cirno, I need the CRYSTAL!
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Sword be ugh but cirno tho
[X] Ignore Sword

Oh, wow, you mean to imply that picking up a sword that spawned out of the remains of the cruellest person you’ve ever met, a person who, self-confessedly, can make everything you see, hear, and even feel bend to the slightest whim because she’s some mastermind could be a bad idea?

A sword, which just so happens to remind you of a chainsaw ‘incident’ that resulted in half of if not more of your arm to be forcibly replaced by a chainsaw arm who’s now corrupting your body and mind from the inside out, so it can drain you of your energy until you inevitable die for the realsies?

Could picking up such an object, in these suspicious circumstances, in these times, truly be the kind of gesture that would not only backfire but prove that you’re indeed not worthy of free will?

AH, GEEZ. AS IF YOU COULDN’T SEE SOMETHING SO OBVOUIS!!

Not sure who you’re really mad against right now, you let out a deep breath and turn away from the blade, intent on ignoring the heck out of it and instead try to do something much more productive.

Like speaking to the oddly innocent gigantic copy of your friend who’s staring at you with mild concern, who was just ready to, if the way she’s postured says anything, outright grab you by the neck and pull you away if you had decided to go through with such a suicidal move. What a good girl.

Though…not that you dislike her, or that she’s done anything to make you think so, is this not just one of those ‘too good to be true’ situations? What if she’s just pretending to be on you-NO.

YOU’RE NOT GOING TO THINK THAT WAY! Absolutely not, if you start doubting everything around you or even your own sanity then you’d only be giving that FAKER some twisted satisfaction. It’s what she would have wanted after all, and regardless of your ‘victory,’ there’s still the…

What? OH, yeah! You just remembered, “Hey buddy! Can I ask ya something?” that you wanted to ask NOT-Cirno about something and now is the perfect time to do so, since it’s like you can do anything else with all those flames and oil just surrounding the place with no obvouis exits and all.

Your answer is a long blink, followed by her quickly agreeing to your request, “Something: A thing that’s unspecified or unknown, why did you ask that?” with a little bit of confusion in her voice.

…The fact she misunderstood you aside, you just ignore it, lest you’d end up in some discussion where you go all “No, when I meant to say-“ and then she’ll go all “Something is-“ and yada, yada, the conversation would end up meaningless for a few seconds and you can’t have that.

You’ve had plenty of those conversations before anyway, and you’re much savwier, gutsier, smarter, and overall, more epic than the silly girl you were two days ago, so now, you take a step.

And face-plant against the ground because you tried to take a step with a leg that isn’t there.

So much for the ‘you’re much smarter now.’ Still, you raise a hand to show you’re all right and while you’re still on the ground, why not seek the for the silly little leg that you’ve dropped before? If you find it then you could simply just put it back where it should be and voila, the leg shall grow back!

“Does it really work like that?” NOT-Cirno somehow comments on your inner mu-

“No, you’re talking out loud.” She comments thanks to your talking out loud problem that you should get ridd off one day.

Anyway, back to the leg for now. You scan your surroundings with your eyes, like an eagle hunting down prey from the domain of the sky, your sharp gaze cannot be s-oh, there is it! Just over there!

Your leg is, that is your right one, and by that you mean it’s on your right side and that it’s not a correct leg per se because how could it be a wrong leg? Lies half-deep inside the floor, like a log that’s barely floating on top of the smog of some swamp, so too does it lie in the inky ground.

But frankly, you’re not going to waste a lot of time on a LEG of all things so you just pick it up, shove it back where it should be and remove any thought of using it as a melee weapon because even if that would be funny, you can already shoot lasers from your hands and have the physical strength to punch a hole into a solid tree with just one claw so let’s keep what’s practical and not what’s funny.

“You still…haven’t answered, if it works like…that.” NOT-Cirno annoyingly speaks up again.

“Since when were you, this interested in my body?” so naturally, you don’t answer. If only to be annoying and pointlessly petty, because seeking and causing problems is a youkai’s job!

A silent glare is your answer, accompanied with a huff soon after. And then another glare!

“Fine, I’ll just say it like this.” You take a moment to think and say it, “See, here’s the thing: Falling down some stairs, being crushed by a gigantic boulder, suffering intense blood-loss. Things like that HURT a lot, but don’t kill me or any other youkai because they lack MEANING. We’re like, creatures of fantasy so only something as supernatural or as ‘meaningful’ as us, could actually make us die. So, sure, losing a ton of blood will make you woozy and sure, being cut apart by a normal axe, if it even pierces your skin somehow, which if it does and turns you into a bunch of separate meat-pieces…also hurts a lot, but give it a day or two and afterwards you’d be just fine.”

You stop there, confident that it’s enough, yet the way she looks at you clearly asks for more.

“Fine, but again, I’m not some body expert so I’ll end it here! Ahem, so, the easiest way to kill a youkai would be through holy relics or even just magic stuff. Shoot a fireball and bam, the wounds burn and won’t heal away in less than 10 seconds. To kill someone, their death needs to be IMPACTFUL, it needs PIZAZZ, only if the death is like SUPERNATURAL, will it stick.”

And speaking of impactful, an explosion explodes at just the moment you’re done talking.

And it's not the sword doing that, it's like, the whole wall behind you just explodes.
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dynamic entry
Out of the flames, and well, into a place with purple flames comes a bunch of heroes.

Equipped with sunglasses, sunglasses, and an eyepatch, but only really in your imagination does a terrific trio jump out of nowhere or what you perceive to be nowhere to save your ass most likely.

Or it could be a coincidence that they’re here, or they’re not here to save you at all, but who knows?
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Oh they angry
Oh, never mind. You DO know, as the moment they see you.

They start frowning, glaring, looking relieved, all an expression that only one person has by the way, at your general direction!

Scratch that, they're looking at YOU!


Because they’re SO NOT HAPPY to see you!

If anything, they’re FUROUIS to see you!

Which means the same thing, but still it's not a GOOD THING!

You don’t really know what you did wrong, nor can you make sense out of what they’re really saying as they’re shouting over each other, so that they can shout at you, because you have somehow, angered them, which makes them want to shout, and can you see how hard to understand this is?

Heck, even NOT-Cirno’s being of no help here, as the girl COWARDLY decided to just back off and see what’s happening instead of immediately rushing to your defense like a proper friend should do.

Sure, maybe she could like, get angry, and then you'd have to calm her down or something to deescalate the situation, but no, no!

She just backs off, leaving to deal with this on your own!

So, here you are, having overcome the most challenging thing in your life, which may or may not actually be truly over yet in the first place, only to be shouted at by a bunch of friends right now.

Friends that weren't there at all, during the moments that were really, really important...

Still, what can you even do in this situation to calm them down?

Should you even bother?

You didn’t do anything wrong now did you?

Did you?

[ ] Don’t just take their scolding! Ask them where they’ve been! You could have died after all!
[ ] Just stay quiet, just like, pretend to be sorry and maybe they’ll calm down eventually?
[ ] Actually, screw them, you still wanna ask Not-Cirno about her mother and stuff, so let’s do that.
[ ] Eh, they should just relaaaaax. you've already defeated the master-mind after all, so calm down already.
[ ] Another option, that’s way better, maybe, eh, why not give a try? [write-in]
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[x] Eh, they should just relaaaaax. you've already defeated the master-mind after all, so calm down already.

All's well that ends well, so everything is a-okay. We beat the bad guy and nobody died, so we're all good.

We should also probably introduce them to our new friend Not-Cirno. And use the presence of Cirno to prove to Not-Cirno that she is not Cirno.
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Rumia is not amused with Not-Cirno
[X] Point at Reimu first, then Cirno second, and Meiling last, asking each to voice their complaints.
-[X] If they insist on shouting over each other, just turn to Not-Cirno and ask about her family and stuff.

After staring down a being who manipulated us throughout our journey and promised a horrible death, dealing with angry friends does not sound like a big deal. But, unfortunately for them, Rumi's bag of fucks to give is pretty empty at this point. So, I would not be surprised if we are curt with them. Hopefully, they do not take offense. It should stay manageable if we remain calm, I believe.

If the shouting gets resolved orderly, we can introduce Not-Cirno as a friend and explain what we learned about the incident before asking about her household situation.

>She just backs off, leaving to deal with this on your own!

Traitor! We helped solve your interpersonal relationship issues!

Writer, do you use a spell checker?
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A Spell-checker?

I'm not sure, I normally just use the correction slash review function of my local Word App.

So, if that doesn't count, then no I don't.

Does the last update have a lot of grammar mistakes perhaps? Cause if so, I could take a look at one of those spell-checker thingies.
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>>32096
That review function probably counts. I don't have much of a head for grammar, but there are occasions I've noticed typos in this update:
>obvouis
obvious
>savwier
savvier
>FUROUIS
furious
And in the past update, there was a phrase that stuck out to me:
>grow airborne
go airborne
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Totally more than just curt
Oh my, that's really embarassing. I'm afraid english ain't my first langauge but that's just an easy excuse even then.

I'll try to be more careful about typos, that said, for this update I tried one of those online checkers.

If it has a typo even now, then I'll just have to double down on a way to avoid them some other way.





Welcome to whose bitching is it anyway, where the complaints don’t matter and whatever response or reaction, you’d give right back is just as unimportant as you’re not in the mood for it.

That’s right, the amount of fucks you have left to give to this is the exact same amount of stuff you’d give to the person behind you on a buffet line.

Which is nothing, because you’d have eaten everything all on your own, you’d jump towards the buffet and shove as much food as you can in your mouth while keeping eye-contact with the bastard that’s been hassling you all day just to see the despair in their own, which though a spicy feeling would soon be accompanied by the sweet realization that instead of going here they could have just gone and talk to their daughter and tell them they love her so that this whole situation wouldn’t have ever happened in the first place, but that didn’t happen.

The opposite happened and now your whole adventure, your whole journey has been reduced to being nothing more than the temper tantrum of some overly verbose moron who managed to kick her own ass because despite all the power she had, her lack of maturity was her own downfall.


“Have you gone crazy? What part of don’t get in my way and don’t touch anything didn’t you understand before? Sure, I didn’t outright say it but that doesn’t mean you should try to fiddle with items that you can’t understand the moment I let my guard down, you could have died, idiot.”

On an unrelated note, you don’t feel like you’re ready to receive anymore negativity today, so instead of backing down like a bitch or coping about the fact by saying something flowery like ‘Oh, relax I already won!’ or ‘They’re mad, because they really care about me!’ you instead put up one hand to signal them to stop shouting, which happens to be to no avail, because why would they?

“To be honest…I’m more glad than mad since you’re still alive, rum. But come on! I did an amazing entrance, pose and all, and you just ignore all of that to pull on some blatant trap like its candy? Can’t say I’m impressed with you there; you’re making team awesome look lame cause of that!”

Why should they be compassionate about the fact that you may or may not have gone through plenty of traumatic stuff during your ‘leeroy jenkinks’ experience? Why are they just assuming that just because there’s not a single ‘noticeable’ injury in your body that you’ve somehow stayed unharmed out of this? Do they perhaps believe you’re nothing more than some plot-token to seek after? The stupid little girl who got lost in a maze that had to be quickly recovered and nothing else?

“Hmm, to be honest. Most of my annoyance disappeared after that shouting fest, it’s like they say after all: Something, something, oh you know what, forget it! Just come here!” wait, what is---

Suddenly there’s a sensation, the feeling of someone’s arm around you, an unknown warmth that should make you stand up in fright and claw the face off the provoker, yet…. it’s joined by a colder one while you’re still stunned in silence. The only non-participant just sighs at the display.

“Mph, in case you didn’t know. Those two were complaining about you during the whole trip, Rumia this, Rumia that, if you’ve got people that care that much about you, then appreciate them.”

That’s none of her business.

“Oh, It is.” The Hakurei takes a moment to give you a glare again, “If you went up and died then I’d have to waste even more time looking for a dead body that may not even be there. And that’s such a hassle…so do everyone a favour and stick with the group from now on, even dogs understand that logic.” She gives another shrug when you don’t answer, “Besides, I’ll be having you help rebuild my shrine after this, so until then, you’re not allowed to die, can you get that thought in your head?”

…Not really? She sounds more like an asshole who’s trying to send off some secret message.

But even so, maybe you are projecting here a bit. Which is fair, you’ve had your whole life turned, right upside-down but even so, it’s no excuse to be a bitch about things. If anything, letting someone as desperate to be acknowledged as your enemy be remembered in any way would just be losing.

So, you don’t. You don’t snap or snark back at them, instead you calmly, if not with a tiny, tiny bit of curtsy, have each of them speak their complaint one at a time and address them appropriately.

After the other two let go of you first, of course. That whole clasping someone in a vice-grip just felt very unnatural and extremely uncomfortable but despite all that, there was an odd warmth to it too.

As it turns out, if you treat someone’s complaints respectfully rather than ‘false’ apologies or ‘unnecessary attitude’ then eventually they just become unable to stay mad at you, mostly because you gave them all the teary eyes a few moments after, but that’s cause of a leakage problem.

Definitely a leakage problem.

But that all said, you should probably introduce NOT-Cirno by now, you’re not sure if everyone just decided to ignore her as if she’s a ghost but the fact the real one hasn’t mentioned their presence is frankly the strangest things of em all. You’d have expected her to have given a far stronger rea—

You’re just repeating yourself now, so let’s just start already.

Ahem, you get up and clap your hands, “Hey everyone! I’ve got a friend I’d like you all to meet!”

“Who is it?” is obviously their natural reaction, more doesn’t need to be said about that.

“She’s, uh…someone who looks a lot like Cirno but isn’t her, in fact she’s quite a great person if you don’t let the scary look and overall, the fact that she’s related to the culprit get in the way of things.”

And now they don’t look too excited, well, Cirno looks apprehensive, Meiling is more wary, and the Hakurei gives her iconic indifferent look alongside a wave of her hand to tell you to hurry up.

So, you do, you just point at where NOT-Cirno is and say, “Say hi to my newest friend!”
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Oh there is nothing there
“I don’t see anybody”

“So, where’s that friend of yours?”

“So, where’s my evil clone, huh?”

Those observations are ones you sadly have to share with the rest, like a car-seller whose car got picked up by a giant flying magnet, your own friend-mobile alongside your enemy-mobile just disappeared into tin fricking air of all places, leaving nothing more than a reddish portal behind.

You don’t understand what’s happening.

Did Not-Cirno just pick up her sister, ditch the two of you and leave behind a note to read that’s very hard to miss because it’s a flashy rooster statue?

Or is something far more foul, far more unfair and perhaps completely unjustified happening right now?

[ ] You don’t know, but there’s an obvious hint to read right there, whether it’s some villainous gloating or just Not-Cirno apologizing for leaving mid-way, reading what it says is obvious.
[ ] Nah, that’s too easy, first off have the Hakurei vibe-check the thing, maybe it’s some anon-object and so touching it could result in even more unfair nonsense that could happen just for the lolls.
[ ] Screw reading! Somebody took your Not-Cirno, or she ditched you! Let’s go after her! NOW!
[ ] Before any of that, explain the situation to everybody else and ask if they want to go with you.
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[x] Before any of that, explain the situation to everybody else and ask if they want to go with you.

No diving into weird mystery portals before everyone knows whats up. Otherwise they might get fooled by evil doppelgangers or attack Not-Cirno on instinct.

We can impress everybody with our story of how we beat up a God and made friends along the way.
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[X] Before any of that, explain the situation to everybody else and ask if they want to go with you.

This option is pretty much a given based on what we experienced so far in our quest. However, we should definitely get the Hakurei to vibe-check the thing first, and then we can read the note and explain the situation simultaneously.

I believe we should keep our retelling brief, for we do not know if that red portal will remain open for long; unless dialogue does not actually take up time, then going ham is great. Moreover, I suspect that Not-Cirno is bringing her sister to their mother, so time might be of the essence.

Now for some wild speculation on why Not-Cirno was not seen by the others, you need some anon influence in you to be able to see her, and we are jam-packed with it while the others have none.

>tiny bit of curtsy
Did you perhaps mean curtly or courtesy? A curtsy is a formal greeting made by bending the knees with one foot in front of the other while bowing one's head. It is funny to imagine Rumi addressing the trio so formally after having defeated a 'god,' like though she is done with everything, she still got some class.
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Bla bla more talkie walkies
Yeah, I meant courtesy or curtly, somehow my brain combined the both of them.

Though you're completely free to imagine that curtsy, it'd be classical and sassy after all.





[X] Before any of that, explain the situation to everybody else and ask if they want to go with you.

Explaining it is easy, as all you need to do is open your mouth, make sure your tongue is not in the way and voila, the words about what you know and have done come out quick and swiftly.

The reactions of your comrades are just as brief, Meiling and Cirno sound impressed by what you said, the former is even nodding in approval while throwing out the ‘I approve or uh, I’m pretty proud’ gesture by raising her hand at a vertical angle and showing off her thumb in all its splendour.

While the latter, not caring for such a professional expression, goes for the extra mile and engages with you into the social custom known as shaking them hands like the hombres you are, which, in an odd way, makes you feel like your vibes have become…extra radical, even when you talk like this!


The Hakurei, being the very pinnacle of someone who’s hard to impress, just walks past you while you blab on, instead taking a moment to observe the portal in front of her, rub her chin in thought and finally just shoves her wooden weaponry into the thing as if to see what that would do.

And do something it does, wait…is that even a sentence?

Never mind, a ‘slurp’ sound is heard as her wonderful rod is goes into the thing and then calmly comes back out, completely unharmed, for some reason, this prompts the Hakurei into taking a sniff off the thing before looking satisfied.

Her not praising you and being a weirdo aside, you don’t let self-excellence get towards your ego, for you are aware that you're not the greatest, most, magnificent, life-form on earth, sure.

But still, right now, you’ve got the right to feel like you are.

If you ever felt that way, you mean.

Because right now, you just want this over with, go home, have a nap and hope that once you wake up, the first sight you'll see are a bunch of friends ready to have a better birthday with you.

“This looks safe to me,” the hakurei speaks up again, taking your attention, but also prompting you to catch the rooster that she’s thrown your way, “Both statue and portal I mean, it doesn’t look like the former will send anyone off into a giant oven or something just as dead-trappy, so let’s go.”

“After you read that and one of you goons goes first, that is.” The hakurei adds in, filled with nobility.

That cute little sarcasm given, you look at the rooster held in your hands, rip off the note and,

Start reading the note.

Cause what else would you be doing with it?

Let’s go, it's reading time!
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A special message for you
(In hindsight, I could have made Rumia hold the chicken but eh, go ahead and look at the image)

The note is written professionally, with a hint of elegance behind it and how the hell someone can notice that from seeing the letters on it, you don’t really know, but anyway it says the following:

Dear Rumia:

You love Cock. (Because what you’re holding is a rooster, a fake one, but you get that right, right?)

Signed,
Don’t you know final bosses have more than one phase? I totally lost on purpose by the way.
So don’t go getting confident now that you’ve got some bunch of ‘friends’ to take to the ‘final level.’

PS: Lol, does that piss you off? Do you feel cheaped out on? Does anger course through your veins?

Good, cause fuck you buddy, you’re my bitch after all. You'll never be safe, anywhere or anytime.

Now that I've destroyed your feel goodie feelies, I'll patiently await the next time we meet, so until then!
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rumia face
(Oops, I should pressed the spoiler button, but it can't be helped, I'll just let all images be unspoilered then.)

….

“Huh, you look pissed off.” Cirno states the obvious and then looks above your shoulder. “Is what’s written on that, that BAD? Oh, do let me read it too then!” then snatches the note from your hands.

You don’t mind that, you would have given it to her anyway had she asked, “It’s just petty taunting, the words of a loser…” you reply, as calm as always, very calm even. “That, will, NOT, AFFECT, ME.”

“She says while sitting still and talking very quietly, killing intent leaking out like water out of an oily faucet.” The fairy isn’t fooled one bit, then while sitting in the air, she pokes your shoulder, a smirk on her face as she makes a fist out of her palms. “You’re going to kick some ass, I can tell, and don’t think for a second that I’ll let something as ‘it’s personal’ stop me from joining such a fun thing. No, sir. You and I will be like blades of justice! And violence! Lots of violence! It’ll be the final battle!”

“I feel like I should be the sane person here but,” Meiling lets out a sigh as she walks closer, grabbing the shoulders of you two, before speaking again with half a smile, “From what you’ve told, this person really needs a good pounding, so count me in on that too, as long as it’s not murder that is.”

“Oh, it won’t be murder, it’ll be a CARNAGE!” Cirno shouts in excitement, then, too into her own hype, flies on top of your head, lands her feet and points an ice-sword at the sky, “JUSTICE WILL---”

Falls to the ground, for reasons you’ll keep omitted, “Are you all done talking?” instead let’s focus on how the Hakurei is tapping her feet in impatience and then points at the portal again. “Because we or more like, I, don’t have all day! So, let’s get to the end of this or I’ll be the one that runs off now!”

Fair enough, you weren’t going to talk any-more than this anyway. So, you may as well, just go---

“Oh, wait.” A paper is shoved into your face again, “Look! The other side has been written on as well! Go read that too before I’ll kick your ass for---” doing something that she genuinely deserved.

But that said, fine, let’s read the very final part of this dumb letter slash note, even if it’ll most likely be nothing more than more stupid taunting again. With that wary thought, you lower your eyes,

And read the page, d’uh.
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OH wait there&#039;s another page
This note however is written with blatant typos, lack of well, pointy thingies to show the end of a sentence and overall, clumsily written, still, the most readable part of all it reads:

Hey Friend

Eyem tacing sis to Meed Mom.

Left a portal so yuk an wollow two.

Sikned
Friend of Fiend

P:S: Let Sis wrote note two if she mean, ignore it okay?
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Cirno going through portal
“Are we going or not?” the Hakurei’s raised voice stops you from thinking about how stupid the notion of NOT-Cirno of all people, being able to write a note, then letting her sis write a note too, before making a portal and then entering it would be. As there’s no way she’d have the---

“Because I’m going to go now, so, if you don’t want to be left behind then hurry up already!”

Time to write such a thing unless the whole monologue you did earlier took way longer than you predicted it would be.

Which in your defense, it was a monologue you did quickly and swiftly as stated before.

So, yeah.

This is happening, huh?

This portal could be a trap, and the fact that nobody else seems to question it…

Doesn’t make it just extra suspicious? Or are you being too cautious now? The Hakurei checked the thing and seemed to think it looks fine, so what makes you think your guts would beat her own?

As reference, the Hakurei’s guts have solved many incidents before, it’s like, whatever she does always ends up being the correct thing. So, should you really worry now of all times? Or just go?
“Fine, fine, stop whining!” Cirno seems to be on camp go, as she just flies past the Hakurei and moves to enter the suspicious red portal that did not harm a stick before, but still gives bad vibes.

“Mhm, I’ll go after you, Rum.” Meiling is camp go as well, she’s just blatantly keeping an eye on you first and foremost as who knows, maybe you’ll suddenly rush into the purple flames like a moron?

As for the Hakurei, she’s no longer tapping her foot, just crossing her arms as she looks at the fairy who’s about to enter the portal but is still close enough for you to stop her if you feel like it.

Though, is there really a need for that? Maybe you’re starting to grow a little paranoid?

[ ] Just enter the portal already, the group is always right after all. Have some faith in others.
[ ] Don’t go into it, be a contrarian, people love a person that may be a bit paranoid here.
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Paranoid Grue
[X] Don’t go into it, be a contrarian, people love a person that may be a bit paranoid here.

Going to have to agree with Rumia’s ruminations here. I do not see any way this portal can be anything besides a trap. The last we saw of the Faker was her being turned into a sword, which, unless I am mistaken, makes writing an impossibility due to the lack of hands. Moreover, in >>32105, the picture background is spaghetti, and I think we learned our lesson regarding that food.

On the subject of chickens, can we ask the shrine maiden if she still has the egg? Since it is linked to the anon influence and the Faker’s manipulations, we might be able to use it to track her down, even though our body produced it. It’s either that or we use the rooster statue. They somehow found this dimension with us in it initially. Perhaps they can reach the Faker and her sister through the same method that got them here.

>but still gives bad vibes

Considering our blood has been replaced by the Faker’s, I am assuming anything that feels bad to her would feel wrong to us, but not the others, as they are Faker-free. Therefore, I think that the portal gives us some sort of torture as it is a trick from the Faker, which would align with her MO towards providing hope and then taking it away from us. We can use that anon egg and test the portal by dipping the egg inside.

>Though, is there really a need for that? Maybe you’re starting to grow a little paranoid?

It’s not paranoia if they’re really out to get you.
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Paranoia
>>32108

Using common sense for supernatural creatures is a losing battle, just so you know.
Also, yeah, you can ask her that, you can ask her anything in fact.

For your musing, I can't say if you're onto something or completely wrong but will
say that you have the right to ask and try stuff as right now is a less intense moment.





Yeah, better be safe than sorry.

With that mindset, you quickly step to intervene, or to be more precise, you shout the word “WAIT!” to halt Cirno’s portal dive and then step between her and the thing.

Your arms outstretched as a no-no zone as you announce the obvious, “It could be a trap!”

“Huh, a trap?” Cirno tilts her head at the notion, and looks at the portal right behind you, “Eh, if it’s something like a bunch of arrows that shoot your way then don’t worry, I’m too tough for that.” She doesn’t seem unaware of the danger of this place as much as she’s too confident to be cautious.

“I agree, besides the thing isn’t rigged, I already checked myself.” The hakurei joins the conversation, a task that isn’t too hard as she was only two steps away, “So, your worry is unneeded.” Her tone is calm and to the point, as if what she says, simply is. Making any desire to talk back non-existent.

“All you did was put a stick inside of it, take a sniff and then nod satisfied to yourself. How is that trap-checking?” but here’s the thing, you’re not talking back, just genuinely worried about what kind of implications it would have if the whole ground willingly walked into a meat-grinder like this….

Meiling gives your head a ruffle, mistaking your worry for fear as she lets out a warm chuckle. “Rum, she’s the Hakurei. As odd as her methods may seem, they’ve always worked, have some faith here.”

And by the way they talk to you, you can already predict how this conversation is about to go.

Even so, you don’t move away from your spot.

Refusing to let anyone dive towards their demise.

The rooster statue in your right hand weighs a bit, but it’s fine as you’ve carried far bigger things before.

Seeing your stubbornness, or the way you prefer to call it, determination to not mess this up.

The most unexpected thing happens in response.
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Paranoia 2
The Hakurei lets out a laugh, a tiny one, the way someone laughs when they realize they're being silly.

“Ah, I get it.” Which is accompanied by her waving one of her sleeves at you as if you’re some cat that needs to be calmly shooed aside. “You’re scared we’ll get separated.”

You’ve never said such a thing. But your response is restrained to moving only an eyebrow.

“If I enter the portal first and then it suddenly closes, you’ll all be deprived of the most powerful member. Which means the culprit can just zoom in and kick your buts. If I go last then the opposite may happen as well, nor is going in one at a time a good idea either as it may send each person to a different destination and some of you may as well be dead then. That’s what you wanted to say.” again, she comes to the wrong conclusion here.

Afterwards just as unusual, she tends out a hand. “Well, it’s fine if you’re scared. And frankly, since I’m so close to finding the bastards that destroyed my shrine and make them wish they were never born, my mood has reached cloud-nine. So, you can just hold my hand as we jump in together. That should take care of your problem.”

You’re not scared, nor do you want to hold her hand, right now.

That much should be obvious on its own, yet here they all are acting far more dense than normal.

As if they’re actors trying to convince you that they’re the real deal and that you should enter their metaphorical white van already. Just enter the portal already, Rumia. It is safe and has candy in it!

Cirno’s hand felt a bit weird and clammy, the gals appeared with zero explanation on how they found you and not only that, but you know that your opponent can shape-shift and have mu---

You don’t let that thought go any further and instead stay firmly still, concentrating on the matter at hand rather than indulging in any ‘are they real or imposters?’ kind of nonsense.

“Why are you so confident that nothing will go wrong? It’s like you’re assuming that you could handle it even if it actually is a trap.” You again, ask the Hakurei as politely as you can.

“Why shouldn’t I be?” oh, lord. That’s the worst kind of question anyone could ask you, like you genuinely hate this kind of response as it’s not an answer at all.

No, all it does is reverse the question which forces you to think of a way to explain their reasoning while they are the ones that should do that. They have the burden of explaining and not you.

Yet here you now stand, with your worry made light off and none of them convinced that entering this portal is a bad idea as the ‘even if it’s a trap, we’ll be fine’ mentality is shared by all of them.

Knowing that they’ll probably just push you aside and force you to tag along if you don’t make a good case right here, right now or find a way to appeal to them in some ways. What do you do?

[ ] Hold your ground, this is a bad idea, and no amount of peer pressure will make you bend.
[ ] Back off, time is being wasted and they’re right. They can handle it.
[ ] Find a compromise? If they want to enter that badly, they should make SURE it’s safe first.
[ ] Ding Dong, know what time it is? Ask a bunch of random questions to them at the same time, time!
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[x] Back off, time is being wasted and they’re right. They can handle it.
-[x] but yes, we should all hold hands when we go in the portal.

And by Back off, I mean go through the portal with them. Lets finish this. Holding hands means nobody gets lost or separated.

Also, consider what would happen if we don't go through the portal. We are in the middle of some weird evil magic labyrinth. The other 3 are definitely going to go through the portal, so we would have to backtrack through the labyrinth and find the exit all by ourselves, and who knows what horrors the meatball god put in here that we would have to fight off alone. We are not exactly powerful to begin with and are already tired from fighting Meatball god. And even if we do find the exit, the Meatball god has already demonstrated that they can teleport us to them at any time, so we might as well go to them through the portal without exhausting ourselves wandering through a labyrinth first.
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[X] Ding Dong, know what time it is? Ask a bunch of random questions to them at the same time, time!
-[X] Test the EGG

We can finally get answers on how they got here; the Faker’s rant earlier mentioned shit security. I would prefer we break an entrance to her location rather than take a provided portal because, by God, that is such a bad idea if it is a trap. Why would we let the enemy control the location of a battle? Plus, the whole handholding technique makes me remember this scene from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind: Trish having her hand cut off and Bucciarati left with it, but occurring for us instead. This choice could also make our paranoia quiet down concerning whether or not our group is just impostors by asking them personal questions that only Rumia and they know.

> It’s a scam, because the longer it goes on. The more profits we obtain, if we can artificially lengthen this whole stuff with unnecessary side-quests, random bosses, and even manipulate those ‘heroes’ into coming at places that are never-ending dungeons like this one, then all is going good.

I worry due to lines like this. A protagonist like Reimu has been manipulated, such as in the Animal Realm.

>Yet here you now stand, with your worry made light off and none of them convinced that entering this portal is a bad idea as the ‘even if it’s a trap, we’ll be fine’ mentality is shared by all of them.

Rumi will suffer from stomach ulcers now that she has developed common sense, an abhorrent trait for supernatural creatures.

>>32111
Pretty sure these arrogant bastards good friends would bring us along based on this line:
>probably just push you aside and force you to tag along
They may force us to hold their hands whether we want or not.
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I'm gonna have to roll a die to see which option will be taken then.

But first off, actually...hmm, tell you what. I'll do a little bit of both.

As in whatever question you wanna ask and whatever test you wanna do.

You can do them right now and I'll show the result even if doing that right now
and right here would make you look like a massive weirdo in front of the others.

The die roll will be more a case off, 'Will doing this drain their patience and force you to tag along anyway if whatever you're about to say doesn't make sense?' or like, 'Will this make you question what you are doing and ya back off?'

That said, >>32112 Could you elaborate on what it is you wanted to ask and in what way you will test this egg?

Depending on what you do, you might get more information or have them reveal another path, or you might just look like a insane weirdo who should just be forced to tag along cause otherwise she'd probably cause her own end.

I'll wait for your answer. >>32111 And to you, you're right about how being on your own right now would be a death sentence, but you don't need to worry about that as short of running away yourself these gals won't let you run off anyway.

And it's been clearly said that only someone with an anon-item stuck to them could be easily warped, in this party that would only be you. Aka, if you get out of their for even a second, then there's a chance your ass will be napped again.

With that info given. I'll go wait for any further prompt now.
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Well, I wanted to ask: How did you guys get here? Could we use that method to reach the Faker instead? Do you still have the egg? Along with some personal questions for them that would help reassure Rumia, who seems to be going down a bit of a paranoid spiral, that these people are who they say they are.

On testing the egg, I am thinking of either wrapping some kind of fabric around it and dipping it entirely in the portal briefly before drawing it out or holding the egg by hand and submerging it in before pulling it out to look at whether the egg portion that was covered by the portal is still there.

A thought occurred to me, but what are the chances that something is hidden inside the Rooster statue? I think we should crack it open, just in case.
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I’m aware this may not be the best update ever but I got to get the writing rust out of me fingers.

You could ask a bunch of random questions to reassure yourself of any potential tomfoolery that these may or may not be actually your comrades but are actually just another bunch of skin stealers waiting for you to lower your guard in order to establish a sense of despair once again during a proper dramatic moment aided by a twisted revelation that even now you are still a fiddle.

Which regardless of it being true or not would either alienate your allies…no it wouldn’t. At least not Cirno and Meiling as they’ve seen you do weirder stuff but that won’t stop a certain patience meter from hitting point zero once a certain Red-White Shrine Maiden is done with your unskippable dialogue and bizarre actions that prevent her from simply going to the next stage already and decides to simply push you aside, kick you inside or just forcedly make you tag along already.

Which isn’t that fun, if not outright insensitive. But again, Hakurei. Her whole vibe is that she gets the job done, even if her first approach is to just wander randomly and beat up everyone in sight so expecting her to make an exception because you’re just that special would be massively misplaced.

What would be a lot less fun, would be the situation in which your feelings are right.

As in, YES. They are enemies under the disguise of your friends and now that you’ve foolishly tested them about such a thing, they will now gang up on you and give you a violent, painful death that could have been delayed towards a much later date if only your stupid face wasn’t that easy to read as others say.

So, in short: Seeing how engaging in this option could only result in something negative.

Why not start with something that’s far more harmless if less time-consuming?

Let us inspect the Rooster!
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Aw yeah, it’s cockrooster-inspection time!

Investigation (Aka better don’t fuck this up): https://youtu.be/9_sAzyTCZzQ

Having quickly pulled out your big rooster, you insisted to the displeasure of a certain maiden to show it off in all its splendour because you’re certain that it must be hiding a grand secrety secret!

Knowing with your infinite wisdom, that before anyone goes into a totally obvious trap, they could at least behold the tools they’ve yet to discover within the object of your humble reverence.

Albeit…

At a grand risk.
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For you see…

Your goal is to expose the secret hidden within this thing.

That much is obvious, it’d be a task easily achieved!

However, …

“Oh, come on! I’ve got an incident to solve! Bla! Bla! Bla!”

The Hakurei is an extremely restless and easy to agitate person.

If you don’t get to the point immediately or make a mistake then her patience, which metaphorically looks like three solid cubes of a green colour will inevitable drain out. And she’ll refuse to hear anymore.

Before that happens, you must figure out the truth! Or if the rooster proves useless find another way to convince her to at least consider another way! Or else, the next events will lead to an…

Game over.

Well, not really, you’d just lose any control over your situation and would have to follow her and her gang into whatever traps there may be lying about rather than dying on the spot but still, that is something you do not want to happen.

So, let’s be extra careful in the way you think.
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Now then, do you see anything noteworthy about this object?

If not, you can always turn the up and down, left, and right, if not outright shatter the thing to see if there’s something hidden inside of it. Just keep in mind that time is measured by Reimu’s patience.

That said, if this whole inspecting thing is just ridiculous to you, you can always press the [Back] option to stop with this investigation at absolutely no cost other than your own dignity.

You don't know why you're thinking about it that way, but don't want to think anymore about that as you've already gone through plenty of things that are making you doubt your own sanity so let's pretend this is normal for once.

Anyway, those are your options. You could always try something else, but for now.

Don't be shy, give it a try.

[ ] This is the option where you try it! (You'll have to write more details in here though!)
[ ] This is the option where you try something else because inspecting cock is silly and time-wasting.
[ ] This is the option, that if you press it. A puppy owned by a loving family spontanouisly drops dead.
[ ] Also write-in.
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[X] This is the option where you try it!
-[X] Feel up the cock rooster at all angles to see if there's anything odd
-[X] Visually examine the statue up close, far away, and at every angle
-[X] Sniff the statue
-[X] Put the statue up against an ear and shake it, listening for any sounds inside.
-[X] Carefully crack open the statue down the middle.
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