A week has passed since the last shadow was dealt with. It is now snowing in Gensokyo, and even though it’s mostly cloudy, the yellow star left by Suwako’s shadow shines brighter than even, allowing itself to be seen, even through the clouds and now, all the trees have shed their leaves and all the roads are covered in white. At the Scarlet Devil Mansion island, a small shadow looms around with a grumbling stomach. Kali, the shadow of a shadow youkai, holds her grumbling belly and says to herself “I don’t care what Kimi says, I need MEAT! I’m SICK of fish and vegetables. Uuu~, even if it’s a fairy, I’ll eat it... I just want some meat!” She hovers just above the snow, hiding her ghostly tail under her long black skirt when she hears some giggling coming from the lake’s shore. Without making a sound, she hurries behind a leafless tree and cautiously peeks around it. She spots Cirno, Daiyousei and a tall, pink-haired woman who says in an annoyed tone “alright Cirno, I’ll play with you! Let me just get something from home, and I’ll come back.” Cirno cheers “YAY~ Letty’s the best!” Daiyousei suddenly gasps and says “I need to check on something. I’ll be back soon Cirno-chan.” Cirno smiles as she shouts back “ok~ Hurry back, Dai-chan!” Kali thinks “what LUCK! She’s all alone. I must be careful though. There aren’t many shadows to hide under.” Kali quietly gets closer to Cirno, making absolutely no sound. When she is inches away she starts to drool, keeping her eyes on her prize and concentrating solely on Cirno. She takes a few ghostly steps back, readying herself to pounce on the unsuspecting ice fairy. From her right, Yuki jumps from under a large pile of snow just as Kali begins her run, then shouts at the top of her lungs "IT'S JUST LIKE BREAKFAST, ONLY LIGHTER THAN AIR!!! A~HAHAHA~!” Cirno screams in terror as she flies away with tears in her eyes, and Kali’s heart stops for a moment. The shadow’s body turns to stone, then cracks, making a loud thud as she falls on the ground. Yuki stares curiously as the stoned body rolls all the way to the shore, then sinks in the water almost immediately. Yuki scratches her head, then shrugs with a smile and says “well, I was hoping for more, but I guess that’ll have to do!” She casually walks away toward the mansion, then says “oh that’s right. I forgot to feed my pet again. Eh, Mai’s probably taking care of it right now.” At Makai, Mai flaps her angel wings as she flies away from a huge dark shadow under the lake, looking on with horror as the shadow gets closer. She reaches the shore and rapidly crawls away from the lake water, and when she’s far away enough, she laughs for a moment while lying on the ground, then stops and smiles ominously as she says in a low tone of voice “I am going to kill that idiot.” She takes one last breath of relief and sits up. A colossal ell-like creature jumps from inside the water and gobbles up Mai, along with some trees and part of the ground, then sinks back into the watery depths. From the palace, Yumeko shouts “Mai~, did you feed Yuki’s pet? ...Mai~?”
At the Forest of Magic, in Marisa’s house. Marisa is busily writing symbols and drawing many magic circles on the walls of her new basement. She looks into an open book she has on a small table, then looks at the walls, then back at the book, then grips her own hair and angrily says “grr! That’s not it, dammit! Uu-, gonna have to do all this AGAIN! ...Oh? What’s this sudden pressure?” At Alice’s house, Shinki and Shanghai lie on the snow, making snow angels and having a good time. Alice comes from inside the house, and looking embarrassed she says “mom, aren’t you a little too old for this? Get up before somebody sees you!” Shinki smiles at Alice and says “Alice, you should try to have some fun once in a while.” Hourai pops her head from behind Alice’s back and says “but the snow is so cold!” From the ground next to Shinki, Shanghai says “but it’s still fun. Mama Alice should try this!” Alice places her hand on the right side of her face and says “ugh! How can I say no to that face!?” Even though it’s daytime and there aren’t that many clouds, it starts to get very dark. Alice gets nervous and asks “mom, what is this? ...Mom, are you-? *gasp*” Alice notices Shinki is lying on the ground curled up and hugging her knees while trembling and crying. Alice gets nervous and shouts “MOM! Mom what’s wrong!? ...Shinki!?” Shinki sees a ghostly image of herself using that final spell that destroyed Makai and she watches in horror how the powerful beams and bullets destroy the lands below her ghostly self, and how many plea for their lives just before the powerful spell reaches them and obliterates them. Just like that, the darkness leaves and the ghostly image of Shinki vanishes. Alice has dragged Shinki back inside the house and placed her on a bed by the time she wakes up. Shinki looks around and sees Alice worried face, then asks “A-Alice... Alice, child, what happened? Did you escape the spell on time?” Alice asks “mom, what spell? You suddenly started trembling and crying and you wouldn’t move. I was so scared!” Shinki gulps and says “I... I think I just relieved the moment I carelessly used that spell and destroyed Makai.” Alice and the dolls all stare concernedly toward Shinki as she rubs the side of her head, then starts to cry. Alice leans over and gives Shinki a much needed hug for support.
At Entei, Kaguya sits under the kotatsu in the living room and drinking from a cup. Eirin walks by her and casually says “good morning princess. I am surprised to see you awake so early.” Before Kaguya can answer, the entire mansion gets dark. From outside, Tewi watches as a colossal black blob consumes the entire mansion; when she gets close and tries to touch it, she gets pushed back with great force. Inside, she hears Reisen’s voice, screaming “NOOO~!! DON’T DIE ON ME!!” Tewi panics and shouts “whoa, what’s going on!!? What the hell is this thing!?” Inside the dark mansion, after hearing Reisen’s scream, Kaguya says in a commanding tone “Eirin, go check on her!” When Eirin doesn’t respond immediately, Kaguya asks “Eirin, are you listening?” Eirin is on the ground on her knees and one arm while grasping her chest with the other arm, and on her face, an expression of terror. Eirin falls on the floor on her side while thinking “what is this? Fear? What am I afraid of? I need to focus. The princess needs me. Focus, Eirin. Focus! Gah! I can’t... it’s just too much. I can’t stop shivering. Help me... Someone help me!” Kaguya kneels beside Eirin and tries to lift her up while saying “Eirin, what’s wrong!? This is no time for jokes! Eh?” The sliding doors from Reisen’s room burst open, and Reisen rushes out wildly using her Lunatic Eyes and shouting “I won’t let you kill me!” Kaguya backs away, pulling out a spell card and the jeweled branch, but before she is able to declare her spell, she realizes Reisen is fighting against a horde of specters from her past, while alongside her former war companions in the moon. Kaguya shouts “what is the meaning of this!?” and just like that, the darkness is replaced by dim sunlight; the specters leave, and Eirin manages to recover herself while Reisen drops on her knees, breathing heavily and holding her chest while repeating “I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry.” Tewi enters the mansion and asks “is everyone alright? That black blob left just now, and I swear I heard Reisen...” Tewi looks at the collapsed moon rabbit, then at Kaguya helping Eirin up. Kaguya stares back and says “Inaba, please send a message to the Hakurei Maiden.” Meanwhile, at the Ail’s house, the black blob is already on top of the house. Budou flies around, desperately looking for the door, while Ail kneels on the ground holding on to his stomach. He’s surrounded by three human specters that continue to kick him while laughing and saying “you think we’d be friends with the likes of you!? Just die, you FREAK!” All the specters laugh after kicking Ail on the back of his neck, then suddenly, like in Entei, the darkness leaves and Ail slowly recovers himself. Budou quickly flies to Ail and places an arm on his back, asking “papa, are you alright!? Why were those ghosts kicking you like that!?” Ail breathes heavily for a moment, then struggles to say “Budou... we... need to go... to Hakurei...” Budou pats Ail’s head and says “ok, ok, no talking now. Rest, then we go!”
At the Human Village, Kyo is using all his strength and power to try and cut a hole on the black blob that’s surrounding Maribel and Renko’s house. Inside, they can hear the two girls crying, which despairs Luna as she tries to break through the black blob with her gun-blades. Kyo shouts “Luna, take it easy!” Luna shouts back “but the girls!” Inside, Maribel and Renko lie on their knees, hugging each other, as Gensokyo around them slowly breaks away and turns into another city of the outside world. All the fairies, the youkai and the peace die along with Gensokyo. A specter of Reimu’s dead body lies next to them and constantly stares at them with empty eyes, making them cry harder every time. At the Moriya Shrine, Sanae exits the shrine and waves at Suwako, who waves back while blessing the trees she’s already helped grow so much. Before Sanae can greet her, she watches in horror as a black blob quickly descends from the cloud and falls right on top of Suwako. Sanae shouts “lady Suwako! Lady Kanako, something’s...” Inside her room, Kanako jumps from her futon when she hears Sanae’s scream, then notices how the entire shrine turns pitch-black, even though it’s morning. She rushes out of her room calling out to Sanae and Suwako, then finds Sanae lying on the ground, desperately trying to breath. Kanako runs to her and immediately drops to her knees and watches in horror as Sanae’s face turns blue. She shouts “Sanae! Sanae, breathe! Breathe, dammit all!” The black blobs suddenly leave back to the sky, and just like that, Sanae takes a deep breath, saving herself from suffocation. Suwako slowly gets up with her eyes puffy, red and full of tears and sobbing “the-the trees... No nature! That’s horrible.” After making sure Sanae is alright, Kanako rushes to Suwako, but before reaching her she watches as various more black blobs from all over Gensokyo rise toward the cloud-infested skies. Kanako growls softly and says “one incident after another.”
At the SDM’s gates, there is another small black blob consuming the front gates. Inside, Meiling manages to keep Yuki on her feet while walking and saying “it’s alright, it’s alright. I got you.” Yuki starts to sob, and is unable to reply, then Yumeko’s specter appears in front of Meiling and Yuki, then says “such an impertinent child. I swear, you put one more TOE out of line, and I’m kicking you OUT!” Meiling tenderly says “don’t listen to that thing.” Yuki sobs “my family hates me.” Meiling softly replies “your family would never hate you. These creatures aren’t your family. Trust me, I know what I’m saying.” A specter of Shinki appears on their left and says “Yuki, why the HELL did I bring you to life!? You’re only a pest! GET OUT OF MY SIGHT!” Meiling feels as Yuki’s body suddenly turns heavier and violently trembles. Meiling softly says “a real mother would never say such things to her child. No matter what.” Meiling touches a wall and says “this is it... I’m going to put you down so I can break this thing open.” The moment Meiling sets Yuki on her knees, Mai and Alice’s specter appear farther away, then laugh and Mai says “what a pathetic thing. She needs to call attention to herself, just to feel wanted.” Alice laughs and says “yeah. Say, why don’t we just leave her here to rot on her own!?” then Mai replies “good idea!” Both specters laugh, then Meiling summons a colorful energy on her right hand, then punches the wall hard, shattering the blob into pieces, then turns to Yuki, who continues to sob while kneeling on the snow, then softly says to her “don’t let those creatures get to you. Your family loves you no matter what. Not even if you make them mad; they will always love you and be there for you.” Yuki lifts her head to Meiling, and after seeing her smile she can’t help but smile back, dry up her tears and say “thank you.”
Meiling looks horrorstruck toward the mansion, after witnessing two black blobs fall from the sky on each of the mistresses’ bedrooms. She can hear Sakuya calling out to Remilia, while nobody calls for Flandre. She looks at Yuki and hurriedly says “I better check on the young mistress!” Inside the black blob, Flandre relieves 500 years of solitude in just a few seconds and feels as though her mind is about to blow up. The only thing she can hear, other than the buzzing sound inside her mind, is the feint voice of Meiling calling out to her. Inside Remilia’s room, Sakuya holds her mistress against her chest and continues to tenderly shush her and say “it’s alright, my lady. It’s not really that scary to grow older. You just need to accept it as it is. Besides, you know only too well, you can never grow old.” Remilia’s wings tremble along with her entire body as she replies “b-but... what about that story from Ail. I’ll lose you, Meiling... and Patchy too. Sakuya, I order you to stop time forever!” Sakuya looks sadly at the floor behind Remilia and says “I’m very sorry, my lady, but even if I could do that... I would still...” Back at Flandre’s room, Meiling has managed to convince Flandre to walk toward her voice. Staring with empty eyes, Flandre places her hand on the blob’s wall and sounding drained, she asks “Meiling... big sister? What... what should I do now?” From outside, Meiling desperately punches the outside of the blob, even after being pushed back numerous times, she quickly recovers and tires again. After Hearing Flandre’s voice coming from inside, Meiling stops punching the orb shouts “listen carefully! I want you to hit that wall. Break it, Flandre! Like you used to do before!” Flandre continues to stare with empty eyes as she remembers how life was before Ail’s intrusion. She remembers the innocent, yet deadly fun she had destroying everything around her. She starts to smile in a most twisted manner, then sighs and recovers her innocent face. She pulls out a spell card from under her puffy hat and shouts “Taboo – Lavatein!!” A scarlet sword materializes on the same hand Flandre had her spell cared, then Flandre swings it with all her might, trailing danmaku shards behind the blade, and strikes the wall hard, shattering it with ease. From outside, Meiling jumps away from the bullets just as the blob shatters, then quickly gets up from the ground and looks for Flandre. The little vampire stands with a smile on her face, then takes a step toward Meiling, who catches her just as she falls exhausted. Meiling smiles and says “my lady Flandre, you did it!” Flandre places her hand on Meiling’s cheek, smiles, then weakly says “thank you... big sister.” then falls asleep on Meiling’s hands.
The next day, at the Hakurei Shrine. Reimu and Rika sweep the still thin coating of snow from the shrine’s courtyard, while talking about the incidents all around Gensokyo. Reimu stops sweeping for a moment, then thinks “Yuka, Momiji, Byakuren, Yuyuko... Everyone’s whose shadow is dead were attacked by a black blob. Each one experiencing something terrible inside of it. Something that disables their minds.” Rika says “from what the gate guard says, the only way to beat these things is to break them from inside.” Reimu replies “true, but Momiji and Sanae can’t move at all while in there, so there would have to be someone with them for support.” Rika stares back at Reimu and says “well, you have ME, miss Reimu, so don’t you worry! If one of those black blobs comes this way, your Rika will support you!” Reimu smiles back at Rika, then continues sweeping, and after turning around, she giggles quietly while smiling to herself. Meanwhile, Budou and Phredia fly next to Ail, looking worriedly at him. Budou sighs and says “papa, are you SURE you’re ok!?” Ail smiles and says “yes Budou! Thanks to you, that memory from my past is gone. Now, we have to hurry. I have a very bad feeling for Reimu!” Phredia flies in circles around Budou, then points at the Hakurei Shrine. Ail shouts “NO! We’re too late...” then asks “Budou, do you feel that?” Budou lands next to Ail on the shrine’s stairs, then asks “feel what?” Ail says “...it’s like a very powerful emotion coming from the blob. Like... great sorrow.” Inside the black blob, Reimu and Rika hold on to their chests. Rika says “thi-this sadness... this anger... all this sorrow! My lady, what is this!?” Reimu breathes heavily for a moment, then says “I felt something like this before... it was...” Reimu manages to look to the sky and flying above her is a tall woman entirely surrounded by a ghostly blue aura, 6 angel wings, wearing a long blue robe with white long sleeves, long white hair that reaches down to her knees, blue eyes, and holding on to a wand. Reimu’s eyes fill with undeniable horror as she points at the woman and says “this can’t be! I killed you!” Rika asks “miss Reimu, what’s the matter!? Who is this poor creature!” Reimu pulls out her gohei and some charms from under her sleeves and says “This is Sariel... a fallen angel I had to kill in Makai, on the first large-scale incident I had to resolve.” Sariel suddenly unleashes a barrage of bullets straight on to the shrine itself, breaking a chunk of the roof in just seconds. Rika shouts “why is she doing that!?” Reimu stares determined at Sariel and says “I’m sorry... but I’ll have to kill you again.” Sariel responds with another barrage of bullets headed straight at Reimu. Rika jumps to her misters, knocking her out of the way of the bullet shower, and before Reimu can call for her, Rika is showered by the bullets meant for herself. Reimu watches in horror as Rika falls to the cold snow and stops moving. Reimu calls for Rika, saying “Rika, get up! That’s an order!” but there’s no reply. Reimu angrily stares at Sariel, points at her with her gohei, then says “you stepped way out of the line!”
Reimu flies above Sariel, surprising the Angel of Death, and with a smirk on her face, she says “this time I’m going to make SURE you stay dead!” Reimu unleashes her charms straight at Sariel, who doesn’t even block the attack and fires countless bullets at Reimu, but once she feels the burns from the charms she quickly stops attacking and uses her wand to block the remaining charms headed her way. Reimu is not done yet. She disappears from sight for a moment, and when she appears again she fires 5 large red needles that pierce the fallen angel’s skin. Sariel opens her mouth, but no sound come from it. Instead, a low frequency shriek echoes around, affecting Budou outside the blob, the fairies that surround the shrine, and Reimu’s attacks, turning them useless as soon as they touch the invisible sound waves. Reimu realizes what’s happening, so she flies close to the angel, realizing Sariel actually 5 times her own size. Reimu ignores the difference in size and continues her attack, then tosses a yellow amulet that shuts Sariel’s mouth, then continues to shoot her charms on the angel’s skin. Sariel tries to swat Reimu with her hands and wings, but Reimu nimbly dodges each and every attempt, then gets away from the angel and pulls out a spell card from her sleeve, then smiling at Sariel she says “and now, to finish you off. Fantasy Heaven!” Reimu closes her eyes and 7 white yin-yang orbs surround her and fly all around her. Sariel stares curiously for a moment, then panics and tries to fly away. Lightning strikes the angel and stops her from escaping. Under her, Rika holds her thunder sword up high, pointing it at Sariel and saying “I’m sorry, but I can’t allow you to escape.” Reimu smiles when she feels Rika’s presence, then the orbs around her start to glow and countless amulets fly all around, shattering the dark blob and trapping Sariel. Even though the blob is gone, the damage to the shrine remains... and so does Sariel, who is unable to escape Reimu’s attack in time, and just as Rika releases the angel from the lightning, ever single amulet flies straight at the fallen angel and cling on to her, covering her entirely, then there’s a blinding flash. After the flash stops, Reimu and Rika look to where Sariel was, but see only ashes falling to the ground below.
Ail carries the dazed Budou all the way up the stairs of the shrine, while Phredia heals her as she sits on her chest. Once they arrive, they notice many burn marks all over the ground, the snow, and the destroyed roof. He looks around and shouts “Reimu!? Rika!? Is anybody there!?” From the roof, full of burn marks and some dirt on her face, Rika peeks over to Ail and shouts “over here! We’re just patching the roof so we can start repairs!” Ail asks “where’s Reimu? What happened to you? What happened to the roof!?” Rika signals Ail to go to the entrance, so he rushes there and quickly finds Reimu sitting on the porch and staring at the storage house. Budou hangs her head from Ail’s arms and asks “Hakurei sis, what’s wrong?” Reimu stares at Ail and says “good... you’re here!” Reimu stands aside while Ail looks at her curiously, revealing beside her S-Suwako and S-Shinki, both wearing white robes, though S-Shinki’s is twice her own size. Both shadows smile and wave at Ail with a “hi~!” then Ail says “wh-what? But... you died... and you too.” Reimu seriously says “unfortunately, we don’t have time for questions.” S-Suwako says “oh, time doesn’t matter, miss Reimu. We could just stop it for a moment again.” Reimu sighs and says “I believe it would be for the best.” Both shadows close their eyes and surround a small area of the Hakurei Shrine in a soft golden light. Outside the light, time stops moving, and when Ail notices this he asks “what is this all about?” Reimu stares seriously at him, takes Budou from his arms, then says “listen carefully to what they have to say”, then sits on the porch with Budou on her lap. Ail looks at the two former shadows and realizes each has a large pair of white angel wings as well as having shrunk to the size of human children. Instinctively, Ail kneels to them and says “m-my apologies. I didn’t know!” S-Suwako says “please, don’t you do that too.” S-Shinki says “honestly, if Alice and Shinki do that to me, I’m going to cry!” S-Suwako says “please, you are a friend. Do you think I would ask you to do that?” Ail blushes a bit as he gets up and says “no... I’m sure you wouldn’t.” S-Suwako and S-Shinki both stare at Ail with urgency, then S-Suwako ways “Ail, we came down here because you, of all people, need help. Sadly, there is very little we can do to actually help you.” Ail says “wait, if you’re talking about the incident with the goddesses, we’ve already-“ S-Suwako lifts her hand, signaling Ail to stop, then says “no, you still haven’t resolved anything. Ail, the reason that shadow affected you so easily, the reason you manifested all those spells without using spell cards, is because of an old foe that continues to link its fate to yours, regardless of how much you try to rid yourself from him.” Ail opens his eyes wide, but before he says anything, S-Shinki, looking serious at Ail says “yes, you are correct. The same spirit that possessed you so long ago has been cursing your entire existence.” Ail asks “but wait, what about those black blobs? Is that him too?” Both girls lightly nod, then S-Suwako says “those black blobs are the manifested hatred from all the other shadows you all had to kill, all empowered by that demonic spirit. But forget about those. Miss Reimu will take care of that. YOU, on the other hand, will have to concentrate on this task.” Ail asks “what is this... task?” Reimu angrily says “I am COMPLETELY against this! What if a yama finds him there!? What if he gets burned to a crisp!?” S-Suwako shakes her head lightly at Reimu, then turns to face Ail and asks “do you still have that mask and cloak? The one blessed by the goddess from Makai?” Ail quietly nods, then S-Shinki giggles and says “then you are set!”
Confused, Ail paces around and asks “why are you asking this? What do you want me to do? How do I rid myself of that spirit for good!?” S-Suwako says “calm down and listen. You are going to have to enter hell, and I’m not talking about that subterranean one, I’m talking the one where the yamas keep all their sinners.” Ail opens his eyes wide and backs away, shouting “whoa, whoa, whoa~! Are you two INSANE!?” S-Shinki pouts and says “nii-sama is a meanie” then S-Suwako nods and says “I have to agree.” Reimu continues to hold the confused Budou on her arms as she takes a step forward after springing on her feet and says “well, I have to agree with him on this one! What if he’s found!? What if he dies in there!? He’ll disappear forever and you know it!” Budou reacts to this and shouts “no way! You want to put papa in danger this soon after recovering!?” S-Suwako looks sadly at Budou, then says “it’s the only way from stopping those blobs from appearing, and the ONLY WAY Ail can have a normal life. If that thing continues to link itself to Ail, it’ll eventually kill him, long before his time is up, AND if he doesn’t do this, those black blobs will continue to fall upon all of you, not just those whose shadows have died.” Reimu tries to argue, but she can’t find anything to defend Ail with. Ail himself feels pressured and unsettled at this sudden request, but courage slowly grows from his heart, and with determination Ail asks “what will I have to do?” Reimu and Budou complain, but Ail says to them “that thing has been messing with my life for FAR too long, and now it’s messing with my friends, and it could even hurt Budou!” Budou and Reimu settle down while S-Suwako says “I am sorry, I truly am. I... we both tried to look for another answer, another way, but we couldn’t.” S-Shinki smiles as she gets close to Ail, then giggles and says “he’ll be just fine anyway.” S-Suwako nods, then smiles as she says “as for what you have to do. You need that mask and cloak on. We got permission to bless both the mask and cloak so that they can protect your identity, and prevent you from burning to a crisp when you go there. And also... take this.” S-Shinki skips merrily toward Ail and pulls out a sword from under her robe. The sword has a golden hilt with a red triangular gem on its center, and the blade is broad at the bottom, and thinner and much sharper at the tip. The sword is the size of Ail’s torso, and when he grabs it he realizes it’s also very heavy. He looks at S-Shinki and says “wow. How can you carry this thing so easily when it weighs this much?” S-Shinki jumps and slaps Ail’s face, then says “you shouldn’t ask a girl about her personal secrets!” S-Suwako says “you have to use that sword and cut the tail of that spirit in order to completely break the bond it’s made to you...” S-Shinki looks up to the sky and says “oops, it’s time to go now, sis.” S-Suwako and S-Shinki start to float away, breaking the time-stopping spell, then S-Suwako says “Reimu, you do your best to keep everyone alive and sane! Ail, you do your best, and NEVER remove that mask and cloak while inside hell.” S-Shinki’s voice echoes as she giggles, then says “unless you want to burn to a crisp in an instant.” Then both disappear and turn back to yellow stars. One heads back to Makai, while the other sets itself above Gensokyo once more.
Ail, Budou, Reimu and Rika all sit quietly inside the shrine. Ail breaks the silence and says “I’m going, right now!” Reimu desperately shouts “no! Ail, let’s look for another way! There has to be!” Ail asks “and give those shadows the chance to hurt Budou? Let them kill Sanae? Drive Suwako, Remilia and all our friends insane!? Reimu, I must do this. If not for myself, I’m doing this for my friends and for Budou!” Budou stares quietly at the table with a saddened face, so Phredia rubs her head, making her giggle lightly. Rika says “mister Ail, I swear, if you die down there, I’m going to look for your spirit and beat you to a pulp!” Reimu laughs at Rika’s comment while a tear escapes her eye. She taps Ail’s head with her gohei, then says “I’ll hit you harder when you return.” Ail chuckles, then says “Budou, help your Hakurei sis if she asks, alright.” Budou sighs and says “alright papa...” Reimu asks “what do I tell the others?” Ail walks out of the shrine, turns his head toward Reimu, then says “the truth!” then flies away. After he leaves there is a long silence as the tension builds up inside the shrine. Budou lifts both arms and bangs hard on the table, then says “I need to get stronger! I NEED to help papa Ail! I can never help when he really needs it!” Rika grabs Budou and sits her on her lap, then brushes her hair with her fingers and says “that’s not true. You helped him a whole bunch last week. You took care of him, you brought him back from that depression, and now...” Reimu sits down with a worried smile on her face and says “now you give him a reason to give it his all so he can return.” Budou pouts and says “well that’s not enough! I want to help him! Protect him from all those that bully him so much! I have to learn how to fight! Like you, miss Rika!” Rika panics and says “eh!? I... don’t think I can help you, little one. I mean, I could teach you a thing or two, but I don’t know how good of a teacher I could be!” Reimu kneels next to Budou and Rika, and with a serious expression she says “right now he needs help. If we can destroy a few more of those black blobs, maybe his task will become much easier.” Budou looks into Reimu’s eyes and asks “and do you think I could really help with that?” Reimu stands up and points with her gohei toward the Youkai Mountain and says “let’s start by breaking the ones at the Moriya Shrine. What do you say, Budou... Rika?” Budou lifts her head, showing great excitement, and Rika looks curiously at Reimu and asks “but what about the roof?” Reimu looks up, then asks “what about it?” Rika and Budou look to the ceiling and realize it’s been restored and even reinforced. They look back at Reimu, smile, then Rika says “your Rika will go with you, my lady!” Budou lifts her right fist in the air and shouts “if it’s for my friends and my papa, I will not fail!”
Ail stands at the far edge of where the Sanzu river is; far enough, he hopes, to avoid Komachi’s detection. He wears the long thick light-blue cloak that Shinki had unknowingly blessed with its hood on, and on his right hand, the sword the shadows gave him, while on his left he holds the white mast with the uncovered left eye, and just stares. He feels as though his heart is beating fast enough to pop out of his chest at any moment, and his hands feel so cold the cold snowy winds hitting his body feel warm in comparison. He places the mask on and covers the rest of his body with his cloak, then flies straight toward the river. Meanwhile, at the Moriya Shrine, Sanae stands on the shrine’s porch, holding her chest and saying to herself “why... why do I feel so sad so suddenly? M-maybe I’m just tired.” At Makai, Yuki cautiously enters Pandemonium’s dining room, where Shinki, Luize, Alice, Mai and Yumeko are having some tea, all looking concerned at Shinki, who smiles nervously and says “look, I told you I’m ok. I was just caught by surprised yesterday, that’s all.” Shinki notices Yuki at the door and says “Yuki, where have you been?” Yuki looks nervously at them and slowly enters the room. Shinki asks “Yuki, are you ok? You look terrible.” Yuki mumbles softly, then Luize asks “oh my, are you hurt?” Mai gets angry and storm up from her chair and heads toward Yuki, then angrily asks “ok, what’s wrong with you now!? Oh, did you know you forgot to feed your PET yesterday. Honestly Yuki, it took me HOURS to get out of his mouth and FINALLY feed him properly!” Yuki doesn’t answer, so Yumeko gets irritated and asks “Yuki, don’t you have something to say?” Yuki looks at Mai with sad and glassy eyes and asks “do... you hate me?” Mai stares back with surprise and nervously asks “w-w-what are you saying? Have you lost your mind?” Yuki fidgets with her hands and looks away with a sad-puppy face and slouches a little. Mai looks back at Yumeko and Shinki, then both shrug, then Alice gets her attention and nods. Mail turns to Yuki, sighs loudly, then says “no, of course not.” Yuki gets surrounded by blooming yellow flowers as she smiles at Mai, then hugs her, surprising and scaring her at the same time. Mai blushes and shouts “HEY WAIT A MINUTE, WHAT GIVES!? What’s the meaning of this!?” Luize says “aww, how adorable.” Shinki adds “what a beautiful moment this is.” Mai shouts back “NO WAY~! Are you enjoying this!? Get her OFF ME!” Yuki continues to hug Mai’s waist, then places her face on the ice witch’s belly, then says “you love me~.” Mai freezes with a shocked face, then shouts “I think someone’s in need of a nap, don’t you THINK!?” Yumeko casually says “don’t be rude and hug your sister back.” Yuki says “you love me~!” Mai’s screams can be heard from outside as she shouts “what the hell is this turning into~!” Shinki adds “group hug~” then Mai shouts “I’m not liking this weird atmosphere~!
To be continued...
Characters, spell cards and scenario belong to ZUN -Team Shanghai Alice-
Ail, Kyo, Luna, Budou, Phredia, Kali and Kimi were created by Willie G.R
Rika was created by Snapshot2010
JAN 26 2010