Author Topic: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)  (Read 24936 times)

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #30 on: August 16, 2010, 02:07:21 AM »
And the plot congeals.



Yukari wasn?t actually in her estate, but instead at the Hakurei Shrine, standing in the common room by the kotatsu. The resident shrine maiden, Reimu Hakurei, was seated at the kotatsu itself, watching Yukari as she conversed on her cellphone. The Sage Youkai opened a small boundary tunnel and reached in, drawing out a small silver token.

Yukari glanced down at Reimu, and nodded once. The shrine maiden picked herself up from the small heated table and patted herself down, running through a ritual of preparation that she?d done countless times before. Needles, talisman, charms, and the Hakurei Artifact bracers.

She waved her hand through the air, and a floating orb colored to look like a yin-yang orb wavered into existence. She banished it immediately, grabbed her gohei, and nodded at Yukari.

?So, where are you two headed right now?? Yukari asked.

There was a moment of silence while Yukari waited for the reply; Reimu could faintly hear a girls voice from the cellphone Yukari was holding to her ear.

A look of grim determination set into Yukari?s face, and she locked eyes with Reimu.

Time to move.



?About two or so hours out from the Human Village, and we?re headed there in a straight line from Mayohiga.?

Koishi looked up at me. ?You told her where we are? Esi, she knows where we are. You just admitted to her ??

I felt the air pressure hiccup at me as something unnatural happened. I couldn?t place it immediately, but after a split seconds? hesitation I realized I was sensing two more minds.

That hesitation cost me.

A girl in a red and white outfit stepped out from behind Koishi, and waved her arms in an intricate pattern before closing her hands into fists and drawing herself up onto one leg.

?Seal of the Shinto ? Binding Life,? she declared.

I felt as though something had grabbed me by the shoulders and yanked me backwards. I slammed into the ground, hard, and blacked out from the impact.

My sight returned to me a moment later; the black-haired girl was standing over me.

?Hmph. Guess you really aren?t a youkai, after all. That wouldn?t?ve worked on you otherwise.?

I grunt in pain. ?Yeah? Speaking of, if that?s the case, then why are you letting Koishi behind you? That sounds like a bad tactical ??

?Yukari has Koishi. Youkai for the Youkai, human for the human. What?s this I hear about you planning to attack the village? Shouldn?t you know better ? humans are not supposed to fight humans. This is why the spellcard system is there in the first place.?

I sit up. It feels as though I?m moving through molasses ? a lot of resistance to my movements.

?Huh. Been a while since I had to use a bind on a human, guess I?m getting out of practice. You shouldn?t be able to move, at all. Count yourself lucky.?

?I?m so lucky I got attacked with no provocation at all. Woo-hoo!? Even if I didn?t have a weapon at hand, I was always armed with my sharp wit. The most fearsome weapon.

I wrestle my body upright again, climbing to my feet. The red-and-white girl ? Reimu ? circles me, watching as I rise up.

?This is the psyker? Don?t know why I was expecting a Third Eye like the satori, hell; you told me she was a human.?

That?s right ? Koishi, and now Yukari

I crank my head around. It?s getting just slightly easier to move again.

Koishi is locked in place, holding her strange pose that she took that night the tengu captured us. She?s not moving; I try to probe her mind and get nothing.

Just a void. ?What the hell?! What did you do to Koishi??

Yukari steps around into sight. She?s not wearing her poofy dress anymore; instead, it?s more of a Chinese-style Gi with tight leggings. She looks much taller like this, too, unless that?s just a trick of hers.

?Temporal lock. Didn?t want to send her anywhere, didn?t want her interrupting us.?

My cellphone is suddenly in her hands. What the hell?

Reimu comes back around in front of me. ?So, she came from the outside, right??

Yukari waves her hand through the air, and my cellphone takes itself apart. The battery disappears into one of her gaps, and she produces another one. The phone builds itself around the new battery, and Yukari begins to fiddle with my phone.

?Such a selection you?ve got here, Esifex.?

?My name is Sara, dammit. You know this. The rest of Gensokyo doesn?t; let them call me Esifex. You know what my name is. Stop calling me that, please.?

I test myself, and pull my leg forward through the seal as best I can; still thick resistance, but it?s getting easier to move by the minute.

Unfortunately, Reimu notices.

?Seal of the Shinto.? The air thickens around me again, and I?m locked in place properly this time.

?What the hell. What?s going on, Yukari??

Instead of answering, Yukari stops clicking at my phone and studies it for a second.

?Higan Riverside Sunrise? That sounds catchy.?

I sigh. ?Yukari, dammit, what the hell is going on??

She turns her head to stare at me. She looks stern, an odd dichotomy from the song playing from my phone.

?You?re misbehaving, Sara. You?re a loose cannon, and you?re not doing what I told you to do. If you ??

?I have my own free will! What?s wrong with thinking for myself?! I don?t need you to plan my day-to-day life.?

?To the contrary, Sara, yes, you do. If it weren?t for me, you?d be dead. The time you?ve been living has been borrowed time ? my time. The least you should be doing is listening to my recommendations, if not following them to the letter. Bide your time, be patient, and most importantly, behave, and you would?ve been sent back to your world in due time.?

?You said I?d be better off staying indefinitely. Why are you suddenly trying to change your mind??

Reimu strode away from me towards Koishi, inspecting the frozen satori, leaving us to our conversation.

?I?m not changing my mind. If you?ll recall, I said ?at this time? when I said you should remain here. You?re nowhere near ready to return to your corner of the Earth as you are; you?re too impulsive, too cynical, and too impulsive.?

Reimu looked over her shoulder at Yukari, as though she wanted to ask why Yukari had said ?impulsive? twice. Neither Reimu nor I took the bait, though, and after a moment, Yukari moved on.

?You think too highly of yourself. You lack modesty and humility with your newfound talent. On top of that, you?re being vindictive. The guards out of the village were being out of line, yes, but that?s a part of being human.?

?So is being vindictive. I?m not allowed to be human anymore??

?Beats the alternative?? Reimu muttered. She turns around and faces me again, planting her fists on her hips.

?Look, Esifex, if there?s a problem in the village, let the village handle it. Come to me. Tell Yukari. Send a message to Keine. Follow the established routes. Don?t try to take things into your own hands, dammit. That upsets the balance. There are people here specifically for handling this sort of thing.?

?Well then, pardon me. I was unaware of this fact. Also, my name is Sara.?

?Your name is Esifex now. Unless you?d rather we gave you another name? but you aren?t Sara. You can?t take Sara?s reputation, her name, her identity. It?d be dangerous, for you and her, and for reasons I don?t exactly know, myself.?

?I would?ve assumed Yukari would?ve told you, of all people.?

?Yukari tells people what she wants to, and nothing more. You learn to cope with it after a while.?

Reimu was getting disinterested now; I was stuck in her seal, and Yukari was lecturing me. Her mind was starting to wander. Yukari was sitting on the sidelines as the two of us conversed. Now was my chance.

?Berserker?s Rage!? I flex my arms and close my hands into fists, aided by the spellcard in my efforts to tear myself from the seal. Suddenly, freedom of movement was returned to me as I stepped forward.

?Wha- what the?!? Reimu whirls to face me properly, and twists her forearms, flicking them out. I can catch the slightest glimpse of a pair of metallic-looking bracers on each wrist beneath her detached sleeves; a set of needles slide out into her waiting hands, and a pair of floating yin-yang orbs began to orbit around her. I?m not getting near her, now ? nevermind that I never planned to.

?Intervene!?

For those of us who are unaware of how Warriors work, they have a series of ?rush? style moves. The first is Charge, used to initiate combat; the second is Intercept, to close the distance between someone fleeing from you in combat; and finally, Intervene, which puts you between an ally and their enemy.

Somehow ignoring the effects of inertia by running at speeds well over 45 M/PH, I deposit myself between Reimu and Koishi. Judging by the way Reimu is standing, I just narrowly avoided being perforated by her needles. Four graze points for me.

She whirls to face me, orbs following suit.

I get the faintest premonition that the orbs were about to put themselves right where I was standing, so I duck to the left.

Sure enough, one of the orbs goes wailing past me, right into Koishi. The other succeeds in clipping me, sending me spinning to the ground.

Thankfully, this puts me out of the way for Koishi?s revival. The danmaku that she?d been preparing to channel when she was frozen leapt forth and scattered themselves through the air.

Reimu dropped herself over backwards, keeping herself upright on all fours, albeit upside-down. Koishi?s wave passed harmlessly overhead, and she continued the backflip and came up to her feet once again.

I whipped my head around, looking for Yukari. Thankfully, she was right where we?d left her.

?Now, isn?t that adorable; she?s finally fighting with spellcards.? Somehow, Yukari is sitting in midair, as though she?s perched on an invisible barstool.

I produce my wilderness knife while climbing back to my feet and brandish it clumsily. The orb had hit my arm, and I was starting to get sore already from it.

Reimu spins around another one of Koishi?s shots, and I feel something at my feet.

A neat little row of needles are sticking out of the ground right in front of my leading foot.

?You stay where you are. I?m dealing with you later.?

I flip the knife around into a reverse-handed grip and relax my arms.

Not if I have anything to? think about it.

Reimu looks up from her combat stance and glances around before realization sets in.

?Try as you?d like, you won?t distract me from this.?

Is that so?

Suddenly, Yukari stands upright. ?No you don?t. You?re going to regret that, Esifex.?

My name is Sara! Sara, goddamn you! SARA!

Reimu shakes her head and glares sharply at Koishi, forcing herself to focus through my mental noise. ?A name will do you no good if you?re dead, you know.?

Did Yukari say something to me? No matter. Regardless of what I try against her, I won?t be able to win. Just ignore her and try to focus on Reimu. She?s only human, after all ? there?s a shadow of a chance I might be able to help Koishi, and together, we can win this one.

I focus every whit of my telepathy on Reimu. A stream of consciousness begins to flow through my mind; first and foremost are her memories of a past duel with Koishi. The shrine maiden was drawing on past experiences ? a sound tactic. I?m pretty sure Koishi?s doing the same, but I?m not splitting my attention. I want every bit of cognitive thought in Reimu?s mind to echo through mine.

Almost in unison, Reimu and Koishi launch into the air with such speed that clods of dirt are tossed around in their wake. They?re taking their duel to the skies, where they?re more maneuverable. I begin to see traces of pathways through the air ? potential routes for Reimu to take while in flight.

The effect flying was having on Reimu?s mind was interesting; it?s like she was doing it by habit ? controlling her position in the air with as much effort and thought as I put into breathing. Despite her ease, though, her mind was ablaze with energy from flying, and channeling her spiritual powers.

Speaking of those spiritual powers, those ever-present yin-yang orbs hurt like a bitch. My arm is still sore, so I deposit the wilderness knife back into its sheath.

I figure I?ve been linked up enough with Reimu to have a good amount of synchronization. It?s just about time to ?

Reimu whips her head around and glares at me. In a heartbeat, she throws herself around Koishi?s bullet-spam and slams into the ground in front of me.

?What in the True Hell do you think you?re doing??

With her sudden proximity, I?m regretting holstering the knife ? I could?ve lunged at her and put her on the defensive.

Instead, I have nothing going for me, and no way to defend myself short of scrabbling for the knife again. Through my link with her, I get a split seconds? warning of her upcoming attack.

Back in the mundane world, I changed oil as a job and was, by career choice, a massage therapist. Neither job require hair-trigger reflexes or immense strength. Neither one puts you in danger, makes you accustomed to high-adrenaline, high-speed situations.

As such, the only way I knew what had happened to me was through the echo of Reimu?s sight I was tapping into.

She had lashed out and grabbed a handful of my hair, then yanked my head down into her up-raised knee. On the recoil, she snapped her other leg up and kicked me in the chin, sending me spinning over onto my back.

She was back in the air before I?d even hit the ground, and Koishi had barely even started to move in pursuit of her.

The pain radiating through my head nearly made me break contact with Reimu. Instead, I forced myself to ignore it as best I could and focused hard on Reimu.

Heads up, bitch. You?re about to get one hell of a migraine.

Vacuum Hole ? Instant!

Once again, Reimu had left the skies and was right next to my supine form.

?You don?t learn, do you? Stay out of this!?

She grabs the collar of my tunic, balling up all the fabric from the three layers of clothing I had on and hoisted me into the air. I roll my head forward and try to force my eyes back into function to focus on her, but just manage to get some kind of blurry double-image.

?What?ll it take for you to figure it out??

Focus, Sara. Focus! Now or never!

?There is a system here. Way things are done. And you keep trying to muck it up!?

Now, dammit! Ignore the pain!

I turn my telepathy loose on her. A direct link into her mind, broadcasting as loud as I can, with every bit of her own cognitive thought echoing through the link. If my theory were correct, this should have the same effect on her as reading my own mind would have on me, according to Koishi.

Reimu?s head snaps back as all the muscles in her shoulders tense up at once.

I cheer to myself. It?s working!

Seems I?m all out of ?stupid? now and have moved right on to ?terrible luck?.

Behind Reimu, I see Yukari walk into my field of vision. Despite the calamity of the immediate area, she seems to be very relaxed, though I can?t tell if she has that ?chess-master blank? look or the ?kill-you-dead don?t-fuck-with-me? look on her face. My eyes still aren?t working right, and all my telepathy is devoted to pouring Reimu?s mind into her mind.

Suddenly, Reimu brings her head back upright to stare at me normally, instead of cringing from innervated muscles.

In my shock, I cut off all sources of telepathy. Reimu?s eyes are glowing white, and she is clearly snarling at me.

?You. Don?t. Learn!?

Despite her being roughly the same size as me, she heaves her arm back and flings me through the air. I try to recall her method for flying, but a very painful kick to the mid-section banishes all thought from my mind and air from my lungs. I tumble across the earth, travelers cloak twisting around me.

Just as I feel like my inertia is about to bleed off, I feel myself fall into the ground. No ? wait?

Fuck. Yukari opened a gap under me! I flail clumsily, trying to find some ground to grab onto, to keep myself from rolling in all the way and potentially ending up in space or something.

I dig my fingers into the dirt for a split second, then I feel some other fingers dig into my ribs, my shoulders, my legs, and tug me into the gap.

Terrible luck. I?m deposited right in front of Yukari, on my own two feet ? until my legs give out.

Reimu landed next to me, and somehow Koishi was slammed into the ground on the other side of her.

?Miscreants. Troublemakers. You?re wasting my time!?

I roll onto my side, clutching my stomach. That flying kick hurt, a lot.

Yukari kneels down in front of me. ?You just couldn?t behave. You couldn?t find a shred of modesty, to use some humility as a shield, and instead you had to be brash and headstrong. What else are we to do with you??

Finally my eyes agree to work in tandem again, and I squint through cringing eyelids up at Yukari. There?s something slightly different about her, besides her newfound height.

Wait? why does she have a Third Eye? It?s closed. What the hell.

?I?m sorry you got mixed up in this, Koishi. Even the best-laid plans can go awry sometimes. Especially when you factor in the human element.? It looks like Koishi didn?t get the stuffing beat out of her while Reimu dragged her down here ? just that she was dragged down and dropped onto the ground against her will.

?What are you going to do?? she asked Yukari.

The Sage Youkai straightens up, Third Eye wires noiselessly slipping into place around her. ?She?s so eager to return to her world, to blaze her own path. That?s too dangerous. Not the way she is. She would need to be changed before she?s sent back.?

There?s a moment of silence, during which I take the opportunity to use my telepathy to remote-view the scene.

Koishi is sitting, now, and Reimu is behind her with her arms crossed, glaring down at us. Yukari is standing over me, and I look like I went a few rounds with a meat-grinder. That?s going to leave a mark.

?Changed? Wait ? what are you planning to do, Yukari? What are you going to do?!?

?It?s unfortunate, it really is. Changing her would essentially nullify why she?d need to go back to her world. We have no need for her here in Gensokyo. She is now, essentially, fully dead.?

What? No, wait? hang on? what does that mean?

Icy fear grips my stomach, and I force myself to look up to Yukari with my own eyes. She?s already waiting to meet my gaze.

?Why me?? I mutter at her.

?Because you had potential. You could?ve been the bridge between minds ? the common voice. But you?re too wild ? I see that, now.?

?If you?re going to change me, at least make it so I actually know German. I?ve always wanted to learn it.?

Being bruised and bloodied in the face makes it easier to disguise a ?forced-smile?. Especially when you can?t do anything with your face, period.

Regardless, Yukari sees through it. ?I can tell you know what this means. You, Sara Fransisca Xiao, will cease to exist, and a new personality will develop. You don?t need to try to save face, to act brave. It?s perfectly alright to be afraid of this.?

Koishi opens her mouth to say something, but holds her tongue. I decide to speak her mind for her.

?So, who gave you the right to decide peoples? fates like this??

Reimu scoffs. ?She did. Deal with it.?

Yukari shakes her head at the statement. ?Regardless, Sara? don?t be frightened. Aspects of you will survive. You will, in essence, be the same, just without your memories. Obviously, I can?t return you to your home. You can?t stay here, either. But, fear not; I?m not sending you to purgatory. There are countless other worlds out there that can support life ? that are, in fact, quite hospitable and inhabited by all types of people.?

Reimu blinks at Yukari. ?Thought you didn?t want this one to find out about that.? She?s pointing at Koishi, who was more focused on Yukari?s words than Reimu?s.

?That?ll be taken care of, as well. As for you, Sara??

I turn my attention back to Yukari. She almost looks sad.

?You'll enjoy the Kaleidoscope. Goodbye.? Her Third Eye twitches, and I see it barely open.



The violet iris of Yukari?s Third Eye focuses on Sara?s form with an intensity that Yukari?s body language fails to convey.

Sara?s eyes roll up into her head and she falls limp on the ground with a sigh. Reimu closes her eyes and shakes her head.

Yukari turns from Sara, and her Third Eye droops halfway shut again. Koishi spots it slowly rolling in the socket, and heaves a sigh of her own.

?I assume you?ll be erasing my memories of this, then, won?t you??

Yukari simply nods.

?Then, you know, it?ll be your duty to mourn her. You saved her, brought her here, and finally, killed her. No one else will mourn her ? no one else knew her. It?ll be up to you.?

Yukari?s sad expression softens slightly, and she turns her true eyes to Koishi.

??If I feel like it.? The Third Eye turns to stare into Koishi?s, and the satori lets out a single sigh and slumps over forward.

Reimu looks down at the two fallen psychics. ?And what about me??

Yukari turns to face the human village in the distance. ?What about you? This is just another incident. Come, you can return to your shrine.? She gestures lazily, and a tunnel boundary slipped open next to Reimu.

?Good night, Yukari. You will mourn her, right??

?Good night, Reimu.?

The shrine maiden shakes her head, then steps through the tunnel.

??if I feel like it.?




This concludes the primary story-arc. An epilogue is slowly rolling around in my head; if it collects enough momentum, we'll see if it doesn't end up here.

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #31 on: August 16, 2010, 02:28:33 AM »
Though its double spaced, it's up to 94 pages long.

My primary story - the one that's not related to Touhou or GenMotKyo - is 128 pages single-spaced.

If I undid the double spacing for FFitK, it'd prooooobably end up to being around 65-80 pages long.

That means I could've been adding about four of five more chapters to my book. Do I regret the time spent on this?

Oh, hells no!

Also, thank you for the comments, guys! They're much-needed morale boosters, and the timing really helped me out, too - I've been out-of-sorts because of the procedure and medication I'm going through.

Kasu

  • Small medium at large.
  • This soup has an explosive flavour!
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #32 on: August 16, 2010, 01:07:49 PM »
Oh ho~

I see what you did there.

Good fic.  I really liked the humorous aspects.

Apparently, Thomas the Tank Engine isn't one to take crap from anyone.

Alfred F. Jones

  • Estamos orgullosos del Batall?n Lincoln
  • *
  • y de la lucha que hizo por Madrid
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #33 on: August 17, 2010, 06:19:59 AM »
I can't believe I waited so long to read the continuation of one of my favourite entries in the WWC.

Oh man, that ending was heartbreaking. The idea that Esifex and Koishi's friendship was ultimately deleted from both of their minds-- oh god, that's easily one of my greatest fears, for such a meaningful memory to just be erased like that.

I will cling to the hope that somewhere, in a part of Koishi's subconscious that Yukari can't touch, she still has vague memories of someone she liked named Sara. :ohdear:

I would love an epilogue to this. This was a great read.

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #34 on: August 18, 2010, 07:31:01 AM »
Credit goes to Sakana for helping me translate Esifex's spoken dialogue into German. Thanks!
EPILOOOOGUE




I roll over onto my side and curl up. Nevermind the grass poking me in the cheek, I can deal with that. The sun shining down on this spot here makes it super-comfy, and I don’t quite feel like getting up just yet.

I feel like I should be worried about something – I can’t remember anything further back than the twenty minutes or so I’ve been awake. Despite this, I’m not terribly concerned. Things will work out.

After about an hour of rolling around in my sunny little glade, I sit up and yawn.

“Hah, das war lahm. Mir ist langweilig!”

Let’s go find something to do, shall we? I open my mind up and begin to scour the land I’m in.

Such fascinating wilderness surrounds me – crags, bluffs, valleys, rivers, even what appears to be a coliseum next to a sprawling village.

The village has sentient life buzzing about in it, very active minds; looks like this’ll be my destination.

“Meine G?te, ich bin ja stocksteif. Das werd ich wohl noch 'ne Weile sp?ren.”

As I walked towards the humble little township, I scryed the residents and denizens. A wildly assorted bunch, each with their own unique abilities and personalities. None of them seemed to react to my minds’ presence, so I assumed I was the only one with telepathy.

It wasn’t but an hours walking until I came into sight of the village. For some reason, I was expecting a wooden gate around it. Instead, it was open, with no confining boundaries. The buildings were stonework and brick, too – something else I wasn’t expecting.

I sensed someone had noticed me, but couldn’t spot them. Perhaps it was a trick of the light? I focused my eyes and my mind in tandem.

Weird. There’s someone standing there, but not standing there. I can see them with my mind, but only when I blink.

To better facilitate this, I close my eyes and get a better scan. It’s a bright, energetic mind, full of bubbly enthusiasm and warm greetings.

“Hiya! Welcome to Mangekyou!” she says. Strangely enough, I hear this both spoken – in English – and mentally.

I open my eyes, and standing before me now is a young girl with a frilly skirt. She looks to be no older than eight, though I can tell she’s far more experienced with life.

She looks herself over, too. “Aw, man. A kid, again? Oh well – it’s better than nothing!

“I’m Chaore, and also a little surprised you saw me there. Not many newcomers can tell I’m here without someone else telling them.”

“Du meinst du solltest eigentlich unsichtbar sein, oder so was?” Sure, I know English, but there’s always an advantage to throwing people off a little.

She tilts her head, and I notice a ribbon tying her hair back into a ponytail. This girl, no matter how old she may really be, is adorable like this, and I’m compelled to pick her up and carry her around. I resist, though, because I can’t tell how the natives will take to me kidnapping one of their own.

“Uh… what?” she begins chewing on the tip of her finger while she tries to figure out what I’d said. I suppose I’ll give her a hint and make known my telepathy.

Sorry about that. I said, ‘are you supposed to be invisible or something?’

Her eyes pop open to their widest and she perks up onto her toes. “Oh, awesome! You’re like a psychic or something?! That’s pretty cool!”

She’s almost hopping from foot to foot in excitement. Um. You didn’t answer my question.

“Oh! Right. Sorry. Nah, not invisible – not really. I actually don’t exist normally unless people are lookin’ for me, you know.”

“Hmm, faszinierend. Sind alle Leute hier so? Ich seh niemand anderen.”

She’s confused again, and I feign surprise, like I’d forgotten she couldn’t understand German. I translate for her.

“Oh, nah. Clearly, you’re new here. C’mon, lemme show you around! There are all kinds of people, and a lot of them are pretty cool! Just, watch out for Erebus. He’s not that friendly if you don't sow fear and discord in your path.”



Koishi rolled over, then snorted as a blade of grass tickled her nose.

Whoa, hey. Sleeping outside. Must’ve been one hell of a party.

She climbed to her feet and rolled her arms, loosening her shoulders. As she stretched, she looked around, scanning the horizon for landmarks.

Oooh, the human village. Wonder what they’ve been up to?

With equal parts enthusiasm and energy, she set off, merrily trotting towards the village.


“Mistress?” Ran had a set of linens folded up in her hands, and was just coming back in from gathering it off the lines. Yukari was staring off into space, looking troubled. “Are you alright?”

Yukari waved her hand aside lazily. “I’m fine. Just… feel like I forgot something.

…oh well, it’s probably not important.”


Keine blinked in surprise. “Koishi. So soon. Where’s Sara? I’ve been looking for her for a while now.”

Koishi returned the surprised blink. “Sara? Who’s that?”

Keine’s eyebrow crept up. “Seems like there’s some explaining to do, for both of us. Why don’t you come inside?”



Death plagues us all, and we can’t escape it. It’s an inevitable fact of life – and it has its frights. It is shrouded in mystery, and our initial reaction to it is to despair. We turn ourselves to faith, to our cultures, to our families to help us conquer our fear of death. We reassure ourselves that there’s nothing to be afraid of.

There isn’t. Death comes to us in many forms, but the important thing to remember about it is not that it’s inevitable – just that it’s an ending. Some things end and we never hear about them again – other times, things end to make way for another wondrous beginning.

So when it comes time for you to breathe your last, be of good cheer – your story is reaching its conclusion, and you’re making way for something else. Death is a harbinger to creation! Fear not. It’s not as bad as it could be.





This takes place about a month or so before Sakana's 'Life of a Librarian' stories. :B
« Last Edit: August 18, 2010, 08:16:41 AM by Esifex Gonna Eatya »

Dead Princess Sakana

  • *
  • E is for Elodie, who swims with the fishes.
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #35 on: August 18, 2010, 08:02:58 AM »
This takes place about a month or so before Sakana's 'Life of a Librarian' stories. :B
If you ever wanna write what happens in that time before my story, you'd better say so, or I will do it myself soon  :3

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!)
« Reply #36 on: August 18, 2010, 08:14:27 AM »
If you ever wanna write what happens in that time before my story, you'd better say so, or I will do it myself soon  :3

Esifex becomes reclusive and camps out in the library when she's not sleeping :V
Otherwise, your other various portrayals of Esi have been more or less spot-on; sarcastic, unconcerned, snarky, and psychic.

Esifex's powerset -
Telepathy, of course
Aura reading
Remote viewing
Psycho-synchronization (more or less, mind-hijacking in both directions.)
Ability to scry out the meaning of any written work regardless of language
Ability to percieve Sakana wherever she is wait what no that's silly
And the most important ability of all - Heavily Biased Narration, with a focus on sarcasm and snarky asides

Iced Fairy

  • So like if you try to hurt alkaza
  • *
  • I will set you on fire k'?
    • Daisukima Dan Blog
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #37 on: August 18, 2010, 06:01:29 PM »
Hrm...  I've been trying to accurately describe how this left me, and I find I can't.  I'm a little angry at Yukari, a little understanding, and a little sad.  And there's probably a lot more in the back of my head.

However I think the epilogue wraps it all up nicely.  Well except for the part where Yukari's mistake bites her, but that's best left the the imagination.

Alfred F. Jones

  • Estamos orgullosos del Batall?n Lincoln
  • *
  • y de la lucha que hizo por Madrid
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #38 on: August 18, 2010, 07:05:52 PM »
Hahahaha, Yukari, looks like you're not perfect after all. >:D

Thank you, Keine, you're wonderful as ever. This gets even better once you realize that within a month, Esifex will be conscripted into the Librarians. :3

MysTeariousYukari

  • Nomnomnom~
  • Hooray~
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #39 on: August 18, 2010, 08:25:18 PM »
Ok, Yukari is my favourite touhou, and this makes me want to punch her. You may have planned it all out, to link it up with other stories, but I'm still not happy that the main character basicly gets killed and no one bothers mourning her. Hell, I like Sara/Esifex a lot, and then the end bit.

Chaore

  • Kai Ni Recipient Many Years Late
  • *
  • You Finally Did It, Kadokawa.
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #40 on: August 18, 2010, 09:09:18 PM »
I give a good hearty clap to you. One of the best written things I've seen in a while. Enjoyed reading it all the way to the end. You've taken one of the worst kinds of plots for a fanfic and turned it into something great.

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #41 on: August 18, 2010, 10:27:56 PM »
You've taken one of the worst kinds of plots for a fanfic and turned it into something great.

That caught me off guard - I almost felt like crying from that kind of praise.

Thank you, everyone :O
I think I can honestly say this is my first story that I wrote up for fun, for just writing for myself, that I didn't get bored with halfway through, and that actually got some good feedback. Damn, this feels good.

Esifex

  • Though the sun may set
  • *
  • It shall rise again
Re: Fresh Faces in the Kaleidoscope (Completed!) (+Epilogue)
« Reply #42 on: August 26, 2010, 06:08:49 PM »
Director's Cut

During the final fight scene there, I had a few ideas going on pertinent to Yukari's dialogue there with Koishi.



"'Sorry I had to get mixed up in this'? What?" Koishi stares hard at Yukari, as though she wants to force her way into Yukari's mind.

"You're one of the few people involved who knows the whole story. You're also one of the few people around who'd be able to leave the Barrier, track Sara here down, and undo what will be done. You can't be allowed to remember. I won't touch anything else, I swear by it."



"I had potential? How the hell would you know?!"

Yukari slaps me. "How do you think I knew you were telepathic before you did? How do you think I knew you were different compared to mundane humans? How do you think I knew how you'd behave outside the Barrier? How do you think I know all this?"

I stare up at her, forcing myself to meet her gaze. Unfortunately, I can't maintain it, and I glance down. I blink at the closed Third Eye hovering over her chest.

"Wait..."

"Yes. I'm already telepathic. I'm a demi-goddess, Sara; I'm practically the one responsible for Gensokyo's existence. I know everything that happens here, everything that happens outside the Barrier."

"Then - when we were at Mayohiga - why didn't you -"

"I already knew you didn't trust me well enough. You've got a healthy dose of human prejudice in you - since I acted with an air of authority that you weren't willing to recognize, you stopped trusting me fully. Ergo, Koishi had to come in and act as intermediary."

So nice of you to ask her, first.

"One does not give a goddess permission."



That little bit was cut out because 1)I'm pretty sure Yukari really ISN'T telepathic, and I didn't wanna stray tooooooo far from Canon Touhou, and 2)I don't dislike Yukari enough to make her into a Mary Sue.