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Dual Strife - The Beginning-Sakuya's Side

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Return to Fiction by Valesta

A silver-haired girl in red and blue clothes appears before her. However, she has no face. With her speech broken up, she says, “Your mission… destroy them… for our future… will come someday… destiny… vampires…”

One day, the girl woke up in a mysterious new land. She had shiny silver hair. She knew nothing of how she got there, but from that moment, an unpleasant thought invaded her mind: Vampires, the scourge of all the decency and light in existence. Cruel… ruthless… scheming… evil… All these and more summed up their code of ethics and for the good of everything, they must be destroyed!

She had the power to make it happen, and so her mission begun. Traveling the land, she sought and hunted one vampire after another. With each death, there is a sense of accomplishment, the knowledge that all of existence is one step closer to being rid of all vampires.

She knew not how many years had passed, but it did not matter. During her travels, she saw common people getting by with their lives, smiling and laughing. She wonders how she is different, and eventually, what would happen when her mission is complete?

More years pass with several successful missions under her belt. Only one more target remains: A house known as Scarlet Devil Mansion, under the ownership of the vampire, Remilia Scarlet.

She flies to the island where the mansion stands. As she walks toward the structure, rain starts to pour. With hair extending down to her knees and dressed in a poncho, worn down by various trials, she looks up at the mansion. After this, her mission is complete… but then what? What meaning would her life have then? With such a revelation looming over her, she enters the mansion and makes her way to the inner sanctum. Before her, in the darkness illuminated dimly by candles lined up along the sides of the room, is a young-looking girl, with crimson eyes and blues hair, bat-like wings on her back, dressed in a pink dress, sitting in a large chair, “Hello, there! So you’re that infamous hunter I’ve been hearing so much about! Thank you for eliminating all the competition for me. Believe me, it’s hard sharing the world with others like me. My name is Remilia Scarlet”

The girl says coldly, “With your demise, my mission is complete…”

Remilia raises an eyebrow, “Actually, I have a sister…”

“Sister…” the girl acknowledges the newfound information like a robot updating its database, “With her death, and yours, this land will be free from the curse you represent.”

“Aw, come on… We’re not that bad are we?”

“Enough, vampire! This ends now!” The girl quickly draws a knife and tosses it toward Remilia, who quickly jumps out of her chair and to the side, flying around the room at an impressive speed.

The girl, barely able to follow Remilia’s movement, thinks to herself, Damn! She’s fast…

Remilia, constantly on the move so the girl can’t get a good shot in says, “You know, I’m rather honored you decided to save me for last. So tell me… If you kill me and sis and end your hunting days, what will you do then? Don’t tell me you don’t have a life outside of hunting my kind down!”

The girl, affected by Remilia’s true words hesitates, “Sh-shut up! That is no business of yours!”

Remilia, taking advantage of the girl’s hesitation quickly flies toward her and swings her claws. The girl reacts at the last moment and dodges to the side, Remilia’s claws cutting through her hair, leaving two long silver bunches of hair extending down the sides of her head while the hair that was in back falls to the floor with a clump. Remilia's attack continues, her claws nicking the girl's left shoulder, right thigh, and right leg. The girl attempts a counterattack, which Remilia backs away from. “Good move! That look suits you better, I think!”

“…” The girl draws a handful of knives and tosses them at Remilia, whose quick movements still prevent her from being hit.

Remilia draws a spell card, an initial form of a method used to summon its user’s true power, “Scarlet Sign!” The card vanishes and red energy radiates from Remilia’s body.

“Tch…” The girl anticipates Remilia’s next move.

“Scarlet Shoot!” Remilia extends her right arm toward the girl and releases a volley of large red spheres. The girl narrowly dodges to the side and draws a spell card of her own in response.

“You’re making this quite interesting. You may be worth being my second-to-last target after all. Silver Sign!” The card turns to silver energy, which flows into the girl’s body. She leaps to the back of the room, “This will end you for sure! Perfect Hunter!” Countless knives materialize around the girl and fly toward Remilia, leaving no room for a human-sized person to dodge.

“Nice…” says Remilia, “But you still underestimate me…” Remilia transforms into a bat and squeezes through a space between the knives, then reverting to her original form, unharmed.

“Dammit!” curses the girl in dismay.

Remilia asks, “Will killing me make you happy?”

“…” The girl grits her teeth in frustration toward Remilia’s question.

“It won’t will it? Then why continue doing this?”

“I… don’t know any other way to live…”

“Fair enough. So how did all this start for you? What drove you to take on a responsibility that so many others would dread doing?”

The girl flinches, “I… don’t know… but even so…”

Remilia zooms in toward the girl in the blink of an eye and body slams her against the back wall. She coughs out blood, and then slumps to the ground. Remilia, taking a couple steps away from the girl, asks, “Do you want to continue?”

“I…” The girl grips her knife tightly, This is nothing! I’ve been in worse situation before. I can still win… The girl tries to climb back to her feet, but hesitates, What is this? Why can’t I…? The girl thinks about the things Remilia said and the truth in them, I see… If I continue, my life will lose its meaning… and then I’ll have nothing…


The girl looks at the ground in mental defeat, “Please… kill me…”


“Take my life. I don’t care how you do it. You can tear me apart with your claws; suck my blood… anything at all.”

Remilia pauses and asks, “Just what is your problem? Don’t tell me the infamous Vampire Hunter has given up.”

“Yes… I have given up. You were absolutely right. Killing you and your sister won’t make me happy, and if I did, there would be nothing left for me…”

“I see… but taking your life would be a waste…”


Remilia extends her hand toward the fallen hunter, “Stand up. What if I give you a new life? One with eternal meaning?”

“You can do that?”

“Hell, anyone can!”

“…” The girl accepts Remilia’s offer and is helped back to her feet, “You helped me and offered me assistance… That’s not something I’ve heard vampires are capable of.”

“Wherever you learned that, it’s nonsense. Well, in some cases, that is mostly true, but I’m different.”

Both perplexed and relieved, the girl says, “I… I see…”

Remilia paces around the room, “So tell me… what’s your name?”

The girl rubs her head, “I… don’t believe I have one. If anything, it would be Vampire Hunter, like you said…”

“I see… That won’t do at all… How old are you, then?”

“I don’t know…”

“Hm… Then, with a new life, I will give you a new identity.”

“You will?”

“Yes…” Remilia take a long and thorough look at the girl.

The girl stands in anticipation, with a feeling of trust, relief, and adoration toward the vampire girl that was her mortal enemy mere minutes ago.

After several seconds, Remilia concludes, “Judging by your appearance, I’d say you are… 21 years old.”

The girl shrugs, “That sound as reasonable as any.”

Remilia put her hand under her chin, “And now for a name…” She paces around the room in deep thought for several more seconds, then stops and looks at the girl, “Your name is… … … … … Sakuya… Izayoi.”

“Sa… ku… ya… I… za… yo… i?”

“That’s right! Your name from here on will be Sakuya!”

The girl, now christened Sakuya Izayoi, says, “Sakuya… I like that name… What about that new life you talked about?”

Remilia walks over to a nearby closet and pulls out a blue dress with an apron and maid’s head gear, “I think this sums it up fairly well. From now on, you will be a maid of this mansion, serving me, Remilia Scarlet.”

Sakuya stands, dumbfounded, “You want me, a vampire hunter, to serve you as a maid…?” After a few seconds of thought, Sakuya suddenly cracks a smile and does something she hadn’t done as a hunter, she laughs, “Hahahahaha! A hunter-turned-maid? I never would have thought that! Hehehe… Alright! You got yourself a maid!”

Remilia claps her hands together in approval, “Wonderful! Let me help you get changed! I’ll also help make your hair more presentable!”

Moments later, Sakuya looks into a mirror and sees herself in the blue maid outfit with her hair redone with two braids down the sides of her face. The image she’s seen herself as from that fateful night onward.

Sakuya wakes up and finds herself sitting in a chair in one of Scarlet Devil Mansion’s guest rooms. She shakes her head, “I must have dozed off again. I keep having that same dream…” Sakuya has often dreamt about her life before she became Remilia’s maid and protector. How they first met as bitter enemies and how Remilia changed her life when there was a future of emptiness. But there is one thing that bothers Sakuya, “Before waking up in Gensokyo… Before becoming a hunter… What happened…? My mind’s a complete blank. Just who was I?”

“Having a bad day?”

“AH!” Sakuya is both startled and embarrassed to find out someone had been overhearing her thinking out loud.

At the guest room entrance stands Hong Meiling, “So, why were you asking yourself who you were?”

Sakuya glares at the Meiling, “That’s none of your business! I just… didn’t know that you were there; otherwise I would have kept it all inside. Don’t tell anyone what I was doing, understand?”

Meiling shrugs, “Well, I feel kinda compelled to, but fine. I won’t tell anyone you were acting weird.”

Sakuya rises from her chair, “What are you doing inside anyway? You should be at the gate!”

Meiling answers, “Hey, even youkai have to ‘go’ sometimes! I go inside for that all the time! You can’t expect me to use one of the bushes lined up along the mansion’s outer wall, do you?”

Sakuya sees Meiling’s point, “Very well. Just attend to your business and head back out. Consider yourself lucky you had me to catch you and not Remilia-sama.”

“Catch me? I was the one who talked to YOU!”

“Whatever, just go!”

“No problem,” says Meiling, “besides, tonight of all nights is when I like being outside. We have a full moon tonight, when it’s at its absolute prettiest. Tonight alone, the sun sets at 10:30 and a full moon, the prettiest of all full moons in the year, rises, which will be in a few minutes, in fact. Shouldn’t you be with Remilia-sama at the clock tower to watch it?”

Sakuya, startled, asks, “I slept that long? I should be headed up there!”

“Yeah, you should. Enjoy your great view from the tower, knowing I have a shitty view from the gate…”

“You can fly for a better view, Meiling.”

“Yeah, but without relaxation, the magic is taken away.”


Elsewhere, from the edge of a cliff, three youkai girls watch the sunset. The spring that Reimu, Marisa, and Sakuya had fought to return to Gensokyo had matured into summer.

The first youkai, with short pink hair, brown clothes, including a cap, but most noticeably, the pair of wing on her back and pointed ears, says, “It’s almost here~”

The second youkai, with red eyes and short blonde hair, dressed in white and black clothes, with a small ribbon tied in her hair, exclaims, “This time, we’ll get a home for sure! I can’t wait!”

The third youkai, with short green hair, wearing a short-sleeved white shirt, blue baggy pants, and a red and black cape, most noticeably with two bug-like antennae extending from her head, sighs, “You said the same thing almost a year ago, Rumia, and what happened? You fucked up our chance to get a home in Scarlet Devil Mansion. Oh well, the odds are on our side this time and Eientei is the next best place.”

Rumia says, “Last time was bad luck, Wriggle. This time, I’ve got a good feeling!”

The first youkai says, “It’s unlikely those that resist the effects will discover the source before 5:00AM anyway. Most likely, we’ll have to do nothing!”

Wriggle says, “Right you are, Mystia. Eientei will be our home, as Tewi promised, and we’ll freeload for the rest of our youkai lives… and we won’t even have to break a sweat to earn it.”

“I said ‘most likely,’” reminds Mystia, “There is still an outside chance someone will figure it out. We should do as we are told.”

“Might as well,” says Wriggle, “sitting here would be boring anyway.”

“Pretty soon....” says Rumia impatiently, “I can’t wait!”

Mystia says, “Well, we might as well split up, then. Wriggle, how about you come with me. Rumia, you take off in another direction.”

“Alright,” responds Wriggle.

“Why do I have to go alone?” demands Rumia.

Mystia answers, “Because in the event we do encounter someone, Wriggle and I are best suited working together.”

“Oh yeah… Okay…” With that Mystia and Wriggle fly off in one direction and Rumia flies in another.


Sakuya hurries to the top of the mansion’s clock tower. At the top awaits Remilia and a number of the mansion’s fairy maids. The sun had already set beyond the horizon. “Ah, you made it, Sakuya!”

“Sorry I’m late, Remilia-sama…”

“Not a problem. Well, nighttime is always glorious for a vampire, but nighttime with a beautiful full moon is absolute perfection!” Remilia leans back, “I… just wish I had someone special to share times like this with…”

“Am I not someone special?”

“Not like that. I meant someone… like Reimu…”


“I should have asked sooner, but what do you know about Reimu? What does she like? When is her birthday?”

“I really don’t know…”

“Oh. I_” Suddenly there is a flash of red light, taking up the entire sky.

Remilia and the fairies freeze and look up at the sky blankly, as Sakuya observes the situation, confused, “Wh-what’s going on? Remilia-sama?” There is another flash. Sakuya suddenly notices red light shining on everything. She looks up and sees a reddish-pink moon, only at its waning gibbous stage, not full. “Huh? What’s going on? What happened to the moon?”

Remilia’s mouth starts to move, “Ka…”

“Huh? Remilia-sama?”

“Ka… gu… ya…”

“Kaguya? What’s that? What are you talking about, Remilia-sama?”

“Gensokyo’s mistress! Our absolute leader!”

“This doesn’t make any sense! I don’t recall you ever talking about someone named ‘Kaguya’ before!”

One of the fairy maids asks, “How could you not know who Kaguya is?”

Sakuya looks at the fairy in disbelief. It was possible for Remilia to have a guest Sakuya never met, but the fairies don’t know anyone outside of Scarlet Devil Mansion. She starts to think, Remilia-sama and the maids have suddenly changed, plus the moon is not full and giving off a strange light… strange light… could all this be connected? It has to… Sakuya turns toward the tower’s stairwell, “Excuse me…” She walks down the tower’s spiraling stairs, thinking out loud, “This can’t be natural. We were supposed to have a full moon tonight and no moon changes people like that, but what happened?”

“What’s wrong, Sakuya?”

“AH!” Sakuya flinches to a voice coming from several steps down, belonging to Patchouli Knowledge, “Damn it, Patchouli. You’re my second eavesdropper in less than an hour…”

“Um… My apologies…”

“Forget it. Anyways, what are you doing here?”

“I wanted to see tonight’s full moon.”

“Well, it’s certainly not full…”

“Impossible… Tonight is definitely the night…”

“More importantly, have you ever heard of anyone by the name, ‘Kaguya?’”

“No. Why?”

“Remilia-sama and the maids suddenly started saying that name when that moon appeared. It seemed to have an effect on them…”

Patchouli’s eyes widen, “What? Are you certain? But… to know all this, you must have seen it too, so why aren’t you affected as well?”

Sakuya is caught off-guard by Patchouli’s question, “Actually… I have no idea… I saw it too, but I’m unaffected…”

“I see… Could it be because you’re human?”

“Maybe. I don’t know. At any rate, I suggest you don’t go up there…”

Patchouli stops to think momentarily, “I saw something… interesting earlier. I didn’t think it was important, but now I wonder…”


“Please come with me to the observatory.”

“Huh? Um… okay…”

Sakuya and Patchouli head down the tower and to the mansion’s lobby, en route to another wing of Scarlet Devil Mansion, where the observatory is. On their way through, they see Meiling headed to the door, “Ah… I am SO relieved now. It’s time to head outside and see the moon…”

“DON’T go outside!” yells Sakuya.

Meiling, having not noticed Sakuya and Patchouli, asks, “Why not? In fact, why aren’t you out there with Remilia-sama?”

“Listen, Meiling…” Patchouli explains what she had gathered on the situation with the strange moon to Meiling, based on what she had learned from Sakuya “… and that’s what matters. If you wish to test the validity of this data, be my guest and step outside, but do know you’re taking the risk of ending up like Remilia-sama and the mansion’s maid staff, save Sakuya.

Meiling slowly backs away from the door, “I see… so Sakuya is unaffected… that’s weird… I’d say something like this would be the work of youkai, so why does it only affect youkai?”

“We haven’t enough information,” says Patchouli, “All I know is that Sakuya was not affected…”

“…” Sakuya stands silent, not knowing what to make of the predicament.

“At any rate,” says Patchouli, “I saw something interesting earlier when looking through the observatory’s telescope. It didn’t make a whole lot of sense at first, but now I have a theory. Care to join us?”

Meiling shrugs, “Sure. What the heck? It beats losing my mind to some moon outside…”

The three girls rush through the mansion and quickly ascend the tower to the observatory. Outside, Remilia and the fairy maids can be heard, loudly singing Kaguya’s praises. Meiling observes, listening closely, “That’s… Remilia-sama’s voice! Well, you weren’t joking, she really isn’t being herself… and she’s saying the name ‘Kaguya’ a lot. This is… creepy…”

Patchouli, also hearing Remilia and the fairies from the outside, their noise seeping through the tower wall, says, “Well, Sakuya. I no longer have my doubts. We must find whatever is causing that moon… but what youkai has that kind of power?”

“Don’t know…” says Sakuya, “certainly not your run-in-the-mill youkai…”

They make it up to the observatory. Inside, there is a metal dome ceiling, complete with a large telescope extending to the outside. Patchouli approaches the telescope, “Now to see the possible source of the problem…”

“Ah!” A terrifying thought enters Sakuya’s mind and she quickly dashes in front of the telescope’s eyepiece, “Don’t do it Patchouli!”

“What is the meaning of this?” asks Patchouli.

Meiling says, “I think I just figured it out myself. Honestly, I can’t believe I beat you to reaching a conclusion, Patchouli, but seriously, you have to look outside to be affected, right?”

“Precisely,” says Sakuya, “and that’s exactly what you are doing! You’ll be affected too!”

“But I’m the only one who knows how to operate this telescope,” says Patchouli, “I’ll try to hold out as long as I can, at least until I can direct you to the place in question, hoping it’s the right area. Sakuya, you weren’t affected, making you our only hope. This is the least I can do to help.”

“Thank you,” sighs Sakuya, “Good luck…” She steps out of Patchouli’s way.

Patchouli walks to the eyepiece, hesitates for a split-second, then looks in, “Hm…”

“How are you doing, Patchouli?” asks Meiling nervously.

“As a mater of fact, I’m fine,” answers Patchouli.

“Might you be unaffected too?” asks Sakuya.

“I don’t think that’s it. I see the red light shining down on Gensokyo, but I don’t feel different, but remember, I’m not directly in the moonlight. I’m just taking an indirect look outside. That may be it…”

“I see. Just don’t overdo it.”

Patchouli adjusts the direction of the telescope. The entire dome-shaped room rotates as the direction shifts due south of Scarlet Devil Mansion. She lowers the telescope’s trajectory and steps away from the eyepiece, “There. Take a look, Sakuya.”

“…” Sakuya walks over to the telescope’s eyepiece and looks in. She sees a large bamboo forest with a tall Japanese-style castle in the middle, radiating silvery-white light, “Huh? This light…”

“It’s the kind of light tonight’s full moon would have shined down. I don’t know what happened, but that seems rather reasonable to assume that place has something to do with it. At first, I thought it didn’t concern us, but now things are starting to make sense.”

“Then that’s where I should go,” says Sakuya, “Thank you, Patchouli. I will head out right away!”

Sakuya, Patchouli, and Meiling leave the observatory.

As soon as the three of them are out of sight, a portal opens in the observatory and Yukari Yakumo steps out, “Looks like she got a lead without my direction. Still, to confirm my suspicions…” Yukari look into the telescope, “Just as I thought. Eientei! So SHE is behind this, not that anyone else is capable of that, still…” Suddenly, Yukari has a shocking revelation, “Wait… The Netherworld realm has a direct link to Gensokyo, which means… Oh no! Yuyuko!” Yukari frantically opens a portal and dives in.


Sakuya, Patchouli, and Meiling arrive in the lobby. Sakuya approaches the door, “I’m counting on the two of you to make sure everything stays well around here. Just don’t go outside and look at the moon.”

“You got it,” says Meiling, “Be careful. If whatever is causing all this has control over the moon, it’s gotta be dangerous.”

“I’ll keep that in mind. Thank you.” With that, Sakuya leaves the mansion and heads southward in the direction of the bamboo forest. She flies off the island where the mansion stands and over the surrounding lake.

Eventually, Sakuya is greeted by a high-pitched voice, “Hey! Sakuya!”

“Hm?” Sakuya hovers in place as a girl in white and black descends from the sky, “Oh! It’s you… Rumia…” Rumia is a youkai, who, several months before, was told by Remilia to stop any possible intruders planning to get rid of the mist she spread over Gensokyo, in exchange for a home in Scarlet Devil Mansion. However, Rumia ended up encountering Reimu and Marisa and was defeated, forced to continue living as a wandering youkai.

Rumia spreads her arms happily, “Yeah it’s me… so… why aren’t you affected by the moon?”

“Beats me,” answers Sakuya, “Honestly, I’d ask the same question to you…”

“Ah! Er…” Rumia stammers, then changes the subject, “So, like, where are you going?”

“To a castle south of here, emitting silver light. I plan to investigate it and hopefully get our actually moon back.”

“Ah!” Rumia flinches, then rolls her eyes, “I should have figured someone would have been unaffected and figured out the source. Look like my peaceful night is over…”

“What are you talking about?” asks Sakuya.

Rumia says, “You wanna know why I’M unaffected by the moon? Fine! Me, and my friends, were exempt from the effects to stop people like you who would resist the effects and try to stop the one behind the false moon up there! I was robbed of living in YOUR home, but that won’t happen again! I found a new place and I’ll stop you so I can live there!”

Sakuya draws a knife, “So YOU’RE in league with whoever is responsible? Well then, I should thank you, Rumia. Thanks to you, I KNOW I’m on the right track!”

Rumia falls back several feet, “No, this is where you will turn back or face me! Remember, Sakuya, this is the night! You are in MY element now!”

“You were under my mistress’ command before! You really think I’m afraid of you?”

“You will be!” Rumia draws a spell card, “Moon Sign!” The card turns to white energy, which flows into Rumia’s body, “Moonlight Ray!” She fires a white and blue laser at Sakuya, who quickly bolts to the side. “Not done yet! Take this!” Rumia fires several more lasers.

“Tch.” Sakuya flies quickly, dodging Rumia’s lasers, which eventually stop.

Rumia draws another spell card, “Try THIS, then! Night Sign!” Green energy swirls around Rumia. Sakuya counters by throwing several knives, but Rumia unleashes her spell, “Midnight Bird!” Countless orbs of green power fly at Sakuya, knocking her knives away as well, keeping her on the defensive.

Sakuya says, “Better than I expected Rumia, but you really should get a better idea of who you are messing with!” She draws a spell card, “Wound Sign: Inscribbled Soul!” Insanely, unconsciously, and supported by the power of her spell card, Sakuya wildly swings her knives around so fast, it’s like a shield of slashes has formed in front of her, cutting through Rumia’s orbs. Sakuya’s mental state returns to normal, Rumia’s attack thwarted.

Rumia screams, “AH! Damn it!”

“Know your place, Rumia. You won’t be in my way much longer.”

Rumia draws a third spell card, “No! I won’t give up! Me and my friends will have a home! Darkness Sign!” Black energy, blending in with the night sky, swirls around Rumia, “Dark Side of the Moon!” Suddenly, Rumia completely blends in with the night’s darkness.

Sakuya looks around, “Tch. I should have anticipated this from a darkness youkai…”

Rumia’s voice comes from all around Sakuya, “Behold the power of night!” A small laser shoots down from above Sakuya, which she narrowly dodges. Suddenly she is hit from behind by a ball of energy, catching her by surprise, but not causing a lot of harm.

Damn… thinks Sakuya, She’s toying with me…

“Take this, you dumb maid!” another laser shoots out from in front of Sakuya, which she dodges.

“Gotcha!” Sakuya tosses a knife in the direction the laser came from, but hits nothing.

“Got me? I don’t think so!” taunts Rumia, “I may have lost under these conditions once before, but I bet you don’t have any abilities that could emit intense light and flush me out, like that stupid miko! With this spell card, I AM the night! I am everywhere!”

Sakuya smirks slyly, “’Everywhere’, huh? Thank you for the information, Rumia.”

Rumia stammers, “Wh-what? What are you planning?”

Sakuya draws a spell card, “If you are ‘everywhere,’ of course I wouldn’t hit you, focused on one point, but if I hit multiple points around me at once, then…” she raises the card, “Strange Art!” A cloud of blue energy engulfs Sakuya, “Misdirection!” Several knives materialize in Sakuya’s hands and others appear around her. She throws and releases the knives like a large starburst.

“AHHH!” Rumia screams as blood drips from various points in the air. The wounds come together as Rumia reappears, making a large gash on her lower torso, “D-damn…”

Sakuya says, “If you’ve had enough, kindly allow me to carry on. I’ve wasted enough time here.”

“Whatever,” says Rumia, “You won’t make it in time anyway…”


“At 5:00AM, that moon will permanently hang over Gensokyo and nothing can be done about it.”

“Ah! Dammit!” Without another word, Sakuya races ahead.

Rumia says to herself, “Wriggle… Mystia… It’s up to you now…”


Up ahead, Sakuya mutters to herself, “5AM… This will become permanent at 5AM… This is going to be tight. I mustn’t waste time…” She picks up her pace in the race against time.


In the inner sanctum of the castle in the bamboo forest, where Kaguya, Eirin, and Reisen await the appointed time, Eirin points out, “It is now midnight. Five hours remain…”

Kaguya, feeling slightly weary, says, “Good. Soon, I won’t have to worry about it anymore. I never thought I’d push my powers to such a limit…”

“You can let go,” advises Eirin, “The charm is completed. It will sustain the lunar image in your stead.”

Kaguya takes a deep breath, “Thank you, Eirin. I don’t know how long I would have lasted…”

“…” Reisen rises to her feet, “I’m going out.”

“What for?” asks Eirin.

“Tewi may believe in those three youkai looking for a home here, but I have my doubts. Besides, anyone resisting the effects would be quite extraordinary, don’t you think? In that case, I should add another layer of defense, adding on to the barricade being set up. You know what I can do…”

“Not a bad plan,” says Eirin, “Good luck out there!”

With that Reisen leaves.

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