Ibaraki-doji no Hyakki Yagyo

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  1. [​IMG]

    Arc 0

    "This... 'slide'... it is rather fun..."

    The petite girl with horns protruding from her head slid down the slide at a playground a few times. She seemed to wear some sort of traditional yukata, which is pretty out-of-place in such a modernized area. She appeared to be some sort of oni maiden. You will not believe what excuse she is about to give.

    "Miss, what are you?" That was a voice from a taller girl.

    "I am what I said I was. I'm your... yeah, your imaginary friend. Except I'm really different from most imaginary friends. Well, if you have worries, you can always share it with me, kid."

    "Actually miss, I'm not a kid. I'm going to be an adult soon. But something's stopping me from doing so..."

    "Lack of growth hormones? I know how you feel," the oni maiden laughs a little as the two sat on a bench, "sharing your problems with a friend is good stress relief!"

    "Well miss, it started five years ago when I found a purple mirror. This purple mirror... it came to life, and said something..."

    "I think I know this," the oni maiden's face appeared more attentive, "continue."

    "It said, 'if I continue to linger in your memory in your coming-of-age, you will belong to me'. Or something like that. I'm actually kind of afraid, you know. Still believing in those urban legends, and imaginary friends like you... I'm so into it I can actually feel your face..."

    "Purple... Mirror..." the oni maiden felt a little stunned, "a mere urban legend that may be real. Fret not, I'll do everything in my power to protect you and everything you hold dear. A little pinkie promise?"

    "Al- wait, you aren't even..." the girl sighs, "it's no use..."

    "Well, I thought you'd figure it out by now. But looks like your skull is thicker than I thought. I will protect you. That's what I do."

    Just then, the oni maiden felt something closing in. "If you, mysterious hidden person, are an onmyoji, feel free to reveal yourself."


    Hyakki Yagyo headquarters

    "We probably shouldn't worry about the Ibaraki-doji venturing outside for a little too long. She may occasionally return with jobs to fulfil," a young man sits around, talking to a few Chochino'obake, "wonder what it will be, this time."

    "Think she's in trouble?" One of the Chochino'obake asked.

    "This is Ibaraki-doji we speak of. She is more likely to cause trouble than to encounter it- alright guys, I think it is best if we play a little safe. I'll alert my scouts. Hope she hasn't caused any collateral damage yet."​
  2. Zakku was as he was usually...silent and upside down. It was his way of meditating and getting things in order in his head. Slowly he crunched up and flipped himself around so he could land on his feet.

    A small thud sounded from his feet as he hit the ground and walked into the corridor then heading for the living room, he gave a bow of his head for anyone in the room.

    Soon moving forward for the kitchen he opened the fridge and grabbed a small batch of Sushi from the night before, mainly Prawn Tempura, walking back towards the living area he sat at the table giving another bow of his head., this time holding it for longer before he began to eat munching away
  3. [​IMG]

  4. The young oni-maiden was a little stunned by the appearance of an odd entity. She has seen more odd entities, however. Her human friend, too, was a little shocked By the being's appearance.

    "I'm doing it before a certain someone else does," the oni maiden replies, "that is my path and the choice I take." Afterwards, she grins and crosses her arms, "so, who might you be, anyways? What brings you here?"
  6. Tomo drifted into the estate like some ethereal shadow, materializing from his night on the town curiously sluggish despite his chances of finding suitable work being comparatively higher than not. Tsurugimaru sat limply over one broad shoulder as he walked with the gait of the dead toward the common room where he knew tea and a zabuton with his name on it awaited him. Honestly, the dream-scape hadn't been all that bad the prior evening. However, the changing of the times left much to be desired with regard to the nightmare fuel... Or in his case the dream fuel. Needless to say, spending the evening running around the heads of teenaged girls had not been at the top of his list of things to do. He had seen some very... horrible things that would leave him concerned about his own nightmares for centuries to come.

    Finding a clanmate already up and about once he got to the room that he had been gunning for, he gave a wan smile from exhaustion and promptly collapsed onto a floor cushion with a tired exhale of relief. He was going to need sleep after a night like that. It wouldn't be too hard to doze considering the estate was still a bit dead. Maybe it was because the day was still rather early for demon kind. Then again, there were quite the few nocturnal sorts like himself whose bedtime was around the current time. Truthfully one place around the compound was as good a place to sleep as any other. Hopefully no one would attempt to wake him once he was out. It would either be impossible or detrimental to his or her health.
  7. Hyakki Yagyo Headquarters

    "And that's about done."

    The Yuki-Onna waves a sigh of satisfaction for a job well done. The mansion and the courtyard were practically sparkling when she had finished thoroughly cleaning it though she did have a little help from her volatile companions. They were carrying bamboo brooms similar to hers and were scampering all over the courtyard while sweeping seconds ago before putting away their equipment and gathering around her excitedly. Indeed, it is an unexplained mystery as to how they are even capable of using the brooms as skillfully as any other humanoid being could.

    *Honk honk*

    Suddenly, one of her cute little subordinates released an enthusiastic cry before tugging at her kimono.

    "Yeah yeah. I know Gunther. A promise is a promise after all. Honestly, if it weren't for the sardines, I doubt I could get any of you to help me out."

    Suina releases an exasperated sigh before setting course for the kitchen, her volatile antarctic companions in hot pursuit of her. As she bound off towards her destination, she'd pass by other demons who'd swerve several feet away from her when they catch sight of her volatile underlings and that is for good measure too. The slightest stimulation could set them off. Why one time, the entire headquarter's was almost blasted to Kingdom Come when a whole bunch of them were tied up and mistaken to be pinatas. Fortunately, before the proverbial stick could set them off, Suina managed to freeze everyone's actions literally. Now, everyone is wise enough to steer clear of her whenever her cute little subordinates are present.

    Upon arriving at the kitchen, she deftly opened one of the cupboards and retrieved a can of sardines. She opened it through the use of an icy blade she created out of thin air. Afterwards, she started feeding the five penguins eyeing the sardines greedily one by one until all of them were satisfied. She disposes the can and with a clap of her hands, dismisses her minions into whatever realm they belong to.

    "And that marks the 400th' year without an accident. I really am getting good at imposing my commands over them If i do say so myself kukuku"

    Saying one final word of praise to herself, she decides to take a little stroll downtown to relax. Her aimless wandering somehow led her in the vicinity of the park where she spotted her beloved superior with a human girl... and a male stranger. Even from a distance, she can sense the danger coming from the man. Yes. She can sense it... fire.

    However, neither parties have made a move yet. Doing something hasty and reckless right then and there might trigger a battle that could have easily been avoided. Hence, she decided to stand down and observe things from a distance. At the slightest hint of danger to the young mistress' life, she will spring into action. However, with that said, Ibaraki-doji is the supreme commander of the Hyakki Yagyo, Suina doubts that she'd be needing her help any time soon.​
  8. Arisu Tsuchimikado
    The Tsuchimikado estate was quiet, most of it's residents out and about on separate missions or carrying out their duties. All the while, the head of the clan remained in the main building along with a few others. Despite being a woman, the head was a stong person who proved to be a capable leader. Arisu quietly sat on her knees, two higher ranked priests on either side of her. "It's so quiet today... not that I mind. Any news from the others?"

    "Squad 8 has successfully exorcized their area. Squad 5 is having a bit more trouble, but we have already sent Squad 6 to provide assisstance. The shrines in the area have been properly charmed," the priest on her left, Tanaka, reported while Imai, the man to her right, nodded along.

    Arisu, pleased with the report, stood up, her long brown trailing behing her as she made her way around the traditional Japanese room. Her holy sword, which was strapped to her hip, clank when she moved.
    "I'm heading out now. No need to accompany me, just look over the estate." With that, she set off.


    Lairen & Sairen

    The two red-haired twins had been walking around aimlessly for the past few days without a particular place in mind. They didn't have a place to call home after their shrine was demolished, but at least Lairen was content with just being able to watch over the humans. However, Sairen was a bit of a different story. If not for her brother, she would have joined a clan for demons long ago.

    Lairen wore a black sweater with the zipper half way down, exposing the white t-shirt beneath. Black jeans and grey boots accompanied with his Komainu mask covering half his face. Sairen wore similar dark, clothing, but rather than a sweater, she wore a black cloak that went down to her calves. Beneath was a maroon, long sleeved shirt, black jeans and black boots. Of course, she wore her mask as well. It was a wonder why the two mostly wore black now despite always wearing white when they were guardians of the shrine.

    "Say, isn't this the same place where we were once asked to join the Hyakki Yagyo? Maybe they're centered near here?" Lairen asked his younger twin, his words slightly muffled by the half mask.

    In reponse, Sairen said,
    "Hmmm.... probably. It's likely." The two continued their small talk as they walked, finding themselves at a park where there a few noteable characters, such as a horned girl, a human, and a male. They stopped briefly to watch, standing in such a place where they couldn't be easily spotted by the 3 in the park.
  9. "Hey man, I got the goods!"

    Takeshi looked at the syringe he was handed. Drugs like these were hard to get in this country, and harder to use without being found out. But he and Kenji had found a way. Found 'friends', found an alleyway barely anyone used. Neither of them had been using for long, but they had no intention to stop.

    It was usually after shooting up that Takeshi felt like the world around him was spinning, but all of a sudden he felt like he had been hit by a tornado. He soon realised it definitely couldn't have been the drugs, because when he found himself sprawled on the ground he could see what used to be the syringe lying in pieces. He could also see Kenji on the ground not far from him. He clambered up, and looked around to see what had happened. What he saw was a large and imposing man standing before him, and he looked pissed.

    "Who the hell are you!?" Takeshi asked incredulously.

    "Those substances are a pox on society and you'll never take them again." The man said, ignoring Takeshi's question. He spoke less as if he was lecturing them, and more as though he was stating a fact. Before Takeshi could do anything in response, he found himself hoisted over the man's shoulders, who began to carry him off. Kenji was also being carried away, on the opposite shoulder.

    "Let go, you psycho!" Takeshi yelled. "What the hell is going on!?" Kenji screamed. But no matter what they exclaimed, nor how much they struggled, nothing even made the man pause as he carried them through the streets. The crowds seemed to part for the imposing individual and his bizarre baggage, enabling him to make his way swiftly to the local police department. Once inside, he dumped the pair of them in front of a baffled police officer. "These men were making use of illegal substances." He told the officer flatly. Takeshi would've hoped that the police wouldn't take the word of a random stranger like this, but it didn't matter, since he knew that Kenji would have a second set of syringes on him. They always had a few spares. The big man wasn't done though, as he handed both of them a paper of some kind. Takeshi took a look, and saw it was a job listing.

    "Is this a joke???" Kenji asked this time. "You'll thank me when you're both leading productive lives." The man told them. And then he left. Not a word more, simply disappearing into the streets.


    It wasn't long before Kiritsu ran into his subordinate, another Namahage named Fukuju. "It is unlike you to be late, General Kiritsu." Kiritsu had been due to return to the Hyakki Yagyo headquarters some time ago. He would've made it in good time, had he not chosen to divert his attention to the pair of waifs that had chosen their habits poorly. "My apologies, but I find it hard to ignore wasteful behaviour when I see it. You should know this much." It was true, anyone in the Hyakki Yagyo knew Kiritsu's reputation. It still didn't change the fact he tried to be punctual at all times, but there would always be moments like this. "I wonder, were you forced to choose between your duties and correcting wastefulness, what would you choose, General?"

    "I would make a herculean effort to accomplish both. But....I would ultimately choose my duty. Speaking of duty, is our leader still away?"

    "Yes, General."

    "Hmph. Then let us at least be back at headquarters for when she deigns to return. We can shed these human forms once we are out of sight....."

    Kiritsu would make it back to his subordinates in due time. Now, all that was left was to await whatever was to come next.

  10. *clak clak clak*

    The sound of the two figure's footsteps resounded in the pavement like the clapping of a enthusiastic child. The route back to the Tsuchimikado Clan's temple isn't frequented by civilians nowadays except for the occasional tourists or residents living near the temple. On this particular occasion, the sleepy road had no signs of life except for two individuals. At the surface, they look like any other person and the average human would believe them to be nothing more than one of their kind. However, there is more than meets the eye with these two with the petite, silver-haired female being a shikigami and her companion, a guy clad in black from head to toe, surpassing the limits that define a human being. It would bee blasphemous for an Onmyouji to be compared to a demon but even among the esteemed Tsuchimikado Clan, his strength was formidable. Well, that is to be expected from the Second-in-Command of all Onmyouji, Yomikawa Asa.

    "Geez, Master... We could have at least taken the bus or a cab. Why'd we need to walk all the way to the temple?" Remina complained as she forced one leg in front of the other. "Why, if I hadn't persuaded you to take the bullet train, we would have walked to and from the mountains at Yamanasahi Prefecture!"

    "Hmm... what's wrong Remina? 8 years of training with me in solitude at Yamanashi and your endurance hasn't improved an inch? No no no. That's no good. Alright then. We're going back to do some more training!" Asa declared with much conviction while upon hearing that announcement, Remina quivered on the spot.

    "No! No more! My legs are killing me. If you're going to walk such distances then you could at least dismiss me first, you idiot! Why do I need to walk around with you?! You know I'm not built for that kind of thing!" Remina wailed. Her legs have already gone numb by now.

    "And you know just how I hate public transportation. Seriously. If I could help it, I'd get Yata to give us rides all the time but you know how much that annoys him. Why that one time, he almost dropped us into Mt. Fuji. Ah. Good times. Anyways, I'd like to avoid making use of public transportation as much as possible. Makes me feel like I'm trapped in a sardine can sometimes and some huge penguin demon would eat up the can and... well you get what I'm saying. It would be to our disadvantage to get trapped in those contraptions when a demon attacks. "

    "Then at least get yourself a scooter! "

    "Hmm... now that you mention it... with my savings I could already get one. Plus I already have a license. Okay. It's settled then. I'm getting a scooter first thing tomorrow!" He pumps his fist in the air in excitement.

    "Yay~ Glubuu" Remina tried to show the same enthusiasm as her master but her legs have practically given up on her and she unceremoniously flopped face first on the pavement.


    "Hmm... You're not kidding. You're really tired, aren't you?" Asa says as he bends down and beckons Remina to climb on his back. "C'mon. I'll carry you the rest of the way. Just like old times. Or perhaps you'd like a princess-carry?"

    Remina tried to voice out her protest but seeing as this is the only efficient method left, she merely nods and gets on Asa's back.

    "I'll kill you if you give me a princess carry." She grumbles. To her chagrin, her threat only managed to make her master laugh heartily.

    And so, Asa walked the rest of the way to the temple with Remina on his back.


    Tsuchimikado Estate

    Word of the Second-in-Command's return quickly spread among the ranks of the Tsuchimikado household. By the time they had reached the gates of the estate, a huge crowd had already gathered to welcome them. For some strange reason, however, most of the people that have gathered are females.

    "Welcome back, Vice-Commander and Remina-chan!!!" Everyone cheered upon seeing Asa and Remina after 8 long years. Although Asa received the title just when he was about to venture to Yamanashi for his training, he was grateful that everyone placed so much trust in him and that their fate hasn't wavered even after almost a decade of absence. Though, a huge part of it must be due to Arisu's words. From what he's heard, she's already succeeded her father for the position of leader. She must already have grown quite a bit since he last saw her.

    "Yeah. We're home. Ore? Arisu didn't come to greeet us? Honestly, that girl. Her childhood friend disappears for eight years and she doesn't even bat an eye when he finally returns." He heaved an exasperated sigh after setting Remina down from his back.

    "Well... you see, Vice-Commander. Arisu-sama went out for a walk a while ago..." One of the Onmyodo novices said hesitantly, unsure of how to continue.

    "And let me guess... she didn't bring an escort with her... Honestly that girl... You guys, take care of Remina. I'm heading out to find that troublesome woman." Asa said nonchalantly before dashing out of the estate.

    He wandered around the estate's vicinity and even all throughout the town in search for her to no avail.

    "Tch... if only I can order around Yata freely, I would have located her an hour ago already. But since she isn't at the town nor near the estate then..." Suddenly everything was clear to Asa. There was one particular shrine that his friend frequented ever since they were little. It was nothing big nor grandiose and even among the locals, only a few people know about its existence. He wasn't sure if she'll be there but right now, he doesn't have any better leads.

    Finally, after fifteen minutes of relentless running, he reached the shrine of one of the various Tochigami scattered throughout the city. This one in particular houses Senba, a god that is said to heal the illnesses of those who come to pray to him. And standing in front of the shrine in fervent prayer was none other than Arisu herself.

    "You really like visiting that shrine huh, Ari?" Was his nonchalant greeting to his childhood friend. ​
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  11. "Riohime!! Riohime!!" A small, impish creature came running into Rio's rooms. It looked like a human, but at the same time... not quite. It's features were slightly distorted, fangs protruding from the upper lip and bizarrely rounded yellow eyes.

    "What's the matter, Torako?" Came a gentle voice from the other end of the room. The beautiful girl with pale, blue-tinted hair looked up at her subordinate with her usual empty, pink eyes. "Has something happened?" A little concern entered her voice.

    "Ah..." subdued, the half-oni shook her head. "It's nothing serious, Hime. Just... the Tsuchimikados are getting closer again." Rio clicked her tongue in irritation. Those onmyojis always had them on the run. Her people didn't like it, but they simply didn't have the power to make a complete stand against them.

    "What about the Hyakki Yagyo?" She asked, hoping nothing was up on their end, too.

    "They're still the same. The Ibaraki-doji is the same as ever."

    "I see. Thank you, Torako." Rio told her, but she said it gently, letting the little one know that her presence wasn't unwelcome, either. After hundreds of years by her mistress's side, Torako understood it, and came up to snuggle next to her, unabashedly. The Ibaraki-doji... that was an odd one. She'd been in control of the Hyakki Yagyo for quite a few years now. Even now, it was a wonder why Nurarihyon had given the position to her. Still, no matter. What was it to her what the Parade did as long as they didn't bother the half's? The parade had always been kinder to hanyous like herself, anyways. Kinder than most humans, even letting many join their ranks. For a long moment, she stayed next to Torako, patting her head slightly, then she abruptly stood. "Torako. I'm heading out."

    The little half-oni gave a sigh, but did not voice her protestations. Their leader had always been like that, after all. "Take care, Riohime."

    Rio smiled at her indulgently. "I always do." And with that, she stepped out of their traditional home, making her way out to the more human-populated area, cloak around her and hood up to hide her traditional clothing and stunning blue hair. It would be good if today was peaceful, too.
  12. Arisu Tsuchimikado
    On her walk, Arisu found herself at a rather familiar place; a shrine in Tochigami. Deciding to take a short visit, she entered. It wasn't like she had anything important to take of at the moment anyhow. The shrine hadn't changed much over the years and she liked that. Rather than the more modernized shrines, she preferred the traditional ones simply because they seemed to be more 'pure'. She found herself in front of the shrine, chanting quiet prayers to herself when a voice came from behind her.

    It was a males voice, but one that was unfamiliar to her. However, judging from how he addressed her familiarly and even knew her name, it must have been someone she knew or was close with. She finished her prayer and turned to face the man, who was taller than her. Something about his face seemed to stroke a chord in her memories, but she couldn't quite place where she had seen this man before. After a silent moment of thinking, it struck her. This person was one who she had spent a long time with when she was young, one she had thought of as a brother, Asa. A brief smile came upon her face before disappearing behind a questioning look.

    ".....Asa? Is that really you? You've..... grown," was what she said before shaking her head. "I mean, welcome back. Did you just get back right now? Geez.... You've really grown," she pointed out again, gesturing their height difference with her hands. Though she didn't have a height complex, she hated feeling inferior, which was how Asa made her feel at times. ​
  13. Asa Yomikawa

    Asa's mere response to Arisu's greeting... was delivering a light karate chop to her head. Then the sermon was delivered afterwards. It seems that this girl has gotten careless over the years they were separated. It was a miracle that nothing had happened to her while he was gone.

    "Yeah I just got back from Yamanashi... and I just found out from one of our subordinates about your laxness in your security. How many time have I told you to bring someone along when you're travelling? If this was what you've been doing ever since I left, it's a wonder nothing bad has happened to you. You're no longer a child, Ari. You're the Leader of the Tsuchimikado Clan now. That means that you need to double your security. Well, since I'm back, I may have to start being your bodyguard again. Just like old times."

    After examining Arisu from head to toe, he nodded in satisfaction at her friend's appearance. She certainly looks different since the last time he saw her.

    "Mm. You did puberty right, Ari. You're body has certainly grown... some in a lot more respects than others... " He states nonchalantly as he examines her some more.

    "Say, has the old man arranged you into a fixed marriage yet? You've transformed into a fine woman during my absence, after all." He jested. Though for the traditional Tsuchimikado Clan, the idea of arranged marriages are still pretty much common. He wouldn't be surprised if Arisu already has a fiancee by now.

    Yet for some reason, he couldn't accept such traditional beliefs. This prompted him to pull the girl into a hug after hearing out her replies.

    'I missed you, Arisu. But I'm back now... and I'll protect you from now on. " He whispered to her ear reassuringly.
  14. Arisu Tsuchimikado
    Irritated by his lecturing and unneeded hitting of her head, Arisu gave him a slightly angry glare. After his little lecture, she replied with, "I'm not a child, I know. Which is exactly why I am capable of taking care of myself. I am not weak. Just as you've grown stronger, so have I." She felt inferior to him once again, which brought displeasure, but she kept her composed look.

    Surprised by his blunt and straightforward words, she lost her composure and let out a baffled laugh and an expression to match. How could he say such things to a lady? However, she liked that he was actually complimenting her, so she didn't say anything to him about that besides, "Father has been to sick to look through marriage offers. Plus, I don't want to marry some stranger picked out for me, even if this is tradition."

    Right after speaking, Asa pulled her into a hug, catching her by surprise before he whispered into her ear. The sensation made her flinch, but she allowed him to hug her. "Like I said, I'm capable now. Even with you protecting me, I can take care of myself.... But I'm happy you're back."
  15. Asa Yomikawa

    "Ore? Hmm... If theoretically, the old man arranges you into a fixed marriage with me, what will your reaction be?" He jested with an impish green visible on his face. "As for me, I would have no qualms to that. Ending up with my childhood friend. It kinda has the manga-like ring to it, no?"

    After affectionately ruffling his childhood friend's long, silky brown hair, he prayed to the Tochigami, Senba-sama to cure his foster father's illness. He owes a lot to Arisu's father for treating him like his very own son despite not being related by blood. A large part of who he is today was all thanks to the kind-hearted yet strict teachings of Arisu Tsuchimikado's father.

    "Well... I think it's about time we head home, Ari. I hate to admit it but I'm quite tired from my travels. Besides... we need to do some catching up. It's been eight years, after all. Having Remina as my only companion really made me feel homesick most of the time. The girl keeps complaining about every exercise we do and yet she still does them. If she was gonna complain about every little thing, she should have stayed here... but to be honest, I wouldn't prefer spending all the time training alone. At least there are no dull moments with her as company. Made it feel like I was still at home. . Why if you came along, it would have really felt like it was back home. The three of us doing all sorts of crazy stuff together. Makes me regret a little that I had to leave you back here... But it was for the best... What happened on that mountain with the spider demon was a wake-up call. We all have a responsibility now... those forlorn days of the past will no longer return." Before he realized it, Asa's voice had already taken a grim tone. He quickly reverted back to his old self afterwards, anxious to hide his previous demeanor. Certainly, there were some unsettling things he discovered during his pilgrimage to Yamanashi but he just returned after eight long years. Now was not the time to think about his worries and consequently worry those around him as well.
  16. Arisu Tsuchimikado
    "If I were to marry you? I want someone who sees me as an equal, whereas you make me seem weak. If not for that, I'd have little to no complaints," Arisu said, not taking what he said to heart. He was merely saying it because they were currently on the topic; it wasn't like he thought of her in such a way.

    She watched as he prayed to Senba, taking a brief moment to admire how much he had grown. It felt like it was only yesterday when her father brought him to the house and the two became playmates. Thinking about it now, she really was weak back then, unable to do anything herself. However, now was different. She was confident and strong and along with that, a capable leader.

    Arisu raised her hand and reached to pet Asa's hair gently to reassure him after hearing his strange change in tone. As if to take his mind completely away from the topic, she grabbed his hand and began leading him back to the Tsuchimikado estate. She didn't like it if any of her subordinates were troubled, so she always tried to keep them happy, especially Asa. Though he made her feel inferior, he was still her precious friend. As they soon neared the estate, there were more people near the entrance, awaiting their return. Tanaka and Imai stood there as well, trying to disperse the crowd some but to no avail. The sight brought a smile to her face and she turned to look at Asa, hoping he was feeling better than before.
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  17. Asa Yomikawa

    Asa was silent most of the trip back home. Though unlike before, it wasn't due to the various problems that were disturbing him. It was the realization that he discovered when Arisu took his hand and led him back to the Tsuchimikado Estate. When they were children, it was always him who led Arisu around and took her to various misadventures with him. Now, she really has changed a lot. Looking at the girl in front of him now, it almost seems like the weak, easily frightened and shy girl he once knew never existed at all. It was a surprising and welcoming change at the same time. Perhaps, she really doesn't need his protection anymore... No. He needed to test that himself.

    "Well, I need to see for myself just how good you've become. If you pass then I'll see you as my equal and then we can get married!" A hearty laugh escaped his lips after he thoughtlessly blurts that out in a jest.

    As they neared the gate, the two senior priests could no longer hold back the crowd as they rushed over to them. Remina was nowhere in sight, which hopefully meant she was at least already getting some rest from the long journey. Upon seeing the two of them together, the various residents, practitioners and priests began glaring at them suspiciously in unison before one of them said something.

    "Welcome back from your date, Arisu-sama and Asa-sama."

    Everyone couldn't contain their laughter to begin with but that statement proved to be the trigger they were waiting for. Soon enough, the festive clamoring of the crowd could be heard even from below the hill where the estate is located.

    "Yeah... We're back." was Asa's wholehearted reply while he beamed at the people whom he had already considered his family.
  18. "Well, that's quite the story," the oni maiden speaks sarcastically towards the odd man, "ummm... I guess I'll see you around... maybe. My intuition tells me we will meet." She then turns towards her human friend. "I'll ensure that we will see each other tomorrow. And I'll make everyone else whose twentieth birthday falls within the next four months are safe as well. I think I must head off now."

    She stands up, before walking towards a potential exit, winking at it, noting that someone- or rather- more than just someone, was there. "You both smell like a friendly bunch. So, how's the day?"
  19. It had been a while since Minami last sat between the pink filled branches of Nurarihyon's cherry blossom tree. She felt a bit nostalgic and had spend almosy the entire night between the branches, brushing over the soft petals and contemplated about her life so far. Her Okuri-inu sat below the tree, keeping watch over her as always as she lay on the branch.

    After a long time she got up from the branch and jumped down from the tree, landing softly on the grass before heading into the Hyakki Yagyo HQ with her Okuri-inu in tow.
  20. Arisu Tsuchimikado
    Arisu disregarded his comment about getting married, unsure of whether he was kidding or not. She had no interest in marriage at the time, but she'd have to think about it sooner or later. After all, her father was getting old and sick. Though she thought of Asa as a brother-like friend, she'd be more comfortable marrying him rather than a stranger.

    When they neared the estate and the others charged towards them, a small smile spread across her face. She even laughed at the date comment. At that time, she couldn't help but think about how grateful she was to be head of the Tsuchimikado clan and to be able to know such wonderful people. Arisu lightly pat the head of some of the males near her with a smile, in which some of them turned slightly red. Of course, she thought nothing of it and continued to praise the others, both male and female, on their work for today. The crowd remained ever so lively as she slipped past, making her way towards Tanaka and Imai, who were standing at the estate entrance.

    "I take it your date went well?" Tanaka asked as he and Imai parted the way for her, following behind.

    "Tanaka, please learn the difference between a date and retrieving," Arisu replied while walking into the main building, taking a seat in the room she was in previously before her walk. She set her sword down beside her as she sat on her knees. "It appears like almost all of them have returned. Any news from that?"

    "None. A few attacks here and there, but they were successfully exorcized. There were minor injuries, all in which have been taken care of," Imai reported while gaining a small nod from Arisu. It seemed like peaceful times now with little to no disturbances.

    Lairen & Sairen
    Sairen was the first to emerge from where they were, knowing that her brother was uncomfortable with other demons. She took a good look at the girl, who was smaller than her. Soon after, Lairen came out and stood behind his sister, both of them staring at the girl with their vibrant, piercing yellow eyes. The two were unfamiliar with this person, unsure of who she was or what she was capable of.

    In reply to her, Sairen said,
    "The day is alright, but unproductive. And yours?" She eyed the smaller demon suspiciously, wondering if she was actually stronger than she appeared to be. Well, it didn't matter as long as they didn't have to face each other.
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