Return to Fiction by Mima
The shrine just continued to fill and fill, Yuka was more then right with her guess of there being more than fifty and it was getting to the point that the crowd, alongside the tables which had appeared out of nowhere, probably with the help of a certain Oni.
Though the numbers were now getting large, there was little to no interaction with each other, everyone was staying in the groups they arrived in. The furthest anyone had moved was up to the shrine to talk with Reimu, who didn’t look too pleased about being so popular. Though most of the time she was sat in the usual spot, drinking the usual tea doing her usual activity, nothing. The only difference this time was that she was joined by Marisa.
Soon enough, Mima appeared next to Reimu in a small explosion of darkness and shouted to get everyone’s attention, which she didn’t. Obviously noticing the lack of interest she fired a ball of darkness in the sky eclipsing the sun momentarily causing everyone to look what happened. As the darkness faded away, Mima was hovering in its place with a smile.
“Now that I have your attention, I’d like to welcome you all to the Hakurei festival!” Mima shouted happily, causing some talking among the groups.
Mima went on to brag, “I see there’s lots of people here I don’t know, if you don’t know me, I am Mima, and I am the deity of this shrine!”
The groups began talking louder, I couldn’t help but hear comments like, “There’s actually a god?”, “I thought it was one of those godless shrines.”, “I heard Reimu chased the god away so she didn’t have to share donations!”
Mima interrupted, “Yes, yes, there is a Hakurei Deity… Anyway, I dedicate this festival to the shrine as a whole, here’s for a year of prosperity!” Mima rose her voice, while a group of mini-Suikas danced, almost like cheerleaders. Dedicating the festival to the shrine organising it, that’s… odd.
“So, enjoy yourselves today and-“
“Make sure you donate!” The voice of Reimu interrupted.
Mima shook her head and hovered down the Reimu as the Suika crowd shouted, “Party! Party! Go!”
There wasn’t any particular rush or change in activity for a few minutes, but eventually people started to get up and move around, the majority to the shrine where I guessed the food and alcohol was.
I felt quite pleased that I could recognise some of the others and I have ideas on who some others were by their looks matching their descriptions in the book, though there were still plenty I had no clue on their identity.
After a few minutes, the opening rush to the shrine had ended quite peacefully except when Reimu chased a pink haired woman wearing a blue and white kimono away who was carrying several plates full of food, followed by a grey haired girl wearing a green dress who was carrying equally as much food.
After that spectacle, Yuka rose from her seat, followed by Elly and they wandered to the shrine, with me trailing behind them.
One thing I noticed at the shrine, was that a lot of the food was rice and something that looked like curry, but considering the apparent financial state of the shrine, this is probably all they could get.
I didn’t actually know what I was getting, so I just followed what Yuka did until I had a bountiful looking portion of food, as we got to the drinks it came apparent that the only source of drinks was Suika’s purple flask object, inconvenient to say the least since I didn’t really want to end up in a horrible state.
Deciding to just get on with it, I just poured some of the sake into a glass like everyone else and followed Yuka back to where we sat, on the way I spotted Keine and Akyu sitting on the other side of the shrine while Cirno and her mob weren’t too far away from where Elly was already eating, though they probably hadn’t made themselves known due to the presence of Yuka.
The meal itself wasn’t that bad, it had obviously been done many times before, once again confirming my idea about the shrine’s budget. It didn’t match the taste of what you would get from the Kazami mansion, but it did the job. The drink however was a different story.
I fortunately caught the smell of the sake before drinking it, which alone was enough to almost cause me to throw it away; I expected extremely potent poison to have the same scent as this. I stared at the liquid for a minute before deciding to go through it with, it was a party after all. One… Two… Three! For a brief moment, it actually tasted quite good, I wouldn’t have minded drinking more, but then the aftertaste kicked in.
Immediately I started coughing uncontrollably in revulsion, after yet another minute of agony I finally managed to get control back, hearing Yuka ask, “Have you finished?” I noticed the number of spectators watching and laughing at my act. Embarrassed, I sat down next to Yuka and tried to keep a minimal presence.
After a few minutes of sitting in self-induced solitude, I noticed the party was changing slightly, another wave of Suikas stole everyone’s washing up and took it out of sight and soon after people began to move around and actually talk with others. At the same time, three girls dressed exactly the same, the only difference being their hair colour and costume colour stood in front of the shrine holding musical instruments. I guess this is the entertainment.
The girl wearing black with blonde hair seemed to be the leader, holding a violin with a brown haired girl wearing red standing ready behind her with a keyboard which seemed to be hovering due to wings on either side. On the other side with a silver haired girl wearing white holding a trumpet, who started to play music, shortly joined by the other two. Soon enough, the ensemble was filling the festival with bright, slightly addictive music.
There was more movement in the crowds so I took the chance to move around as well, “Mind if I go for a walk?” I quickly asked Yuka.
I planned to head over to Keine and Akyu first, since I’d get to see a lot on the walk there. On the way, I passed Mima who was drifting from group to group talking; no doubt bragging about her position, alongside her was Marisa also seemed to be doing the same thing as her mentor.
Another bonus to the long walk was being able to match faces to descriptions I had read, for example it was simple to spot the group from Eientei due to the presence of the Moon Rabbits, I took a guess that the woman wearing a red and black dress must be Eirin, due to the nurse’s hat with matched the colour of the dress. Eliminating Eirin, the only other visitor who isn’t a rabbit would be Kaguya, who looked to be stretched out and sleeping. Sleeping, this early into the party?!
Finally, I got to my destination, where Keine greeted me with a wave and invited me to sit down. “So, are you enjoying yourself?”
“Well, things still seems a bit slow and… I can’t say I think much of the drinks.” I replied, with the detestable taste of the sake still present.
“You didn’t drink that horrible Oni sake did you?”
“No wonder, drinks from Oni all tend to be… strong.” Keine explained.
I looked at Akyu, who to no surprise was observing the events and recording them. I asked, “So, any idea what’s to come today?”
“Well, if everyone went as planned, this is probably all that would happen. However with the introduction of alcohol and the personalities of some of the visitors here today, you can never guess.” Akyu replied.
Keine spoke again, “Yes, these events can be quite unpredictable, different things happen each year so we can’t help you there.”
It was only at that point that I noticed there was someone else with Keine and Akyu, sitting out of sight to keep a low presence like I did. She had long bluish-silver hair tied with a red and white ribbon and wearing a smoky brown shirt mostly covered with extremely baggy red overalls, which matched the colour of her eyes. Keine noticed me looking and answered, “That’s Mokou, if you’re wondering, you might have read about her.” Mokou turned to look at me and raised a hand to greet me.
“Mokou, that’s the outsider I was talking about.”
Mokou turned to look at me again, “Looks scrawny.”
“Well, you were like that once.” Mokou paused for a moment before returning to her drink, which I noticed was that ghastly sake.
I stayed with Keine, Mokou and Akyu for a few more minutes as they helped me identify some more of the guests such as Sikieiki and Komachi, a Yama and her Shinigami who both seemed to have put work behind them to come to the festival. “And that’s very rare, Miss Yamaxanadu is well known for workaholic personality. Komachi must have really put forward a good argument to come.” Keine explained. I thought once again on how surreal Gensokyo is, how even judges of the dead come to festivals alongside rabbits, vampires and god knows what else.
After identifying a few more people, I decided it would be best to move on. After saying goodbye to the everyone I walked the long way around the groups on my way to Yuka, Mima was still going around from group to group, though I found it quite odd that she only have a nod to the Yakumos rather then a full life story she seemed to be giving everyone else, though this was interrupted from someone dropping in front of me.
Oh god, I recognise that voice.
I froze in terror slightly and looked forward to see the recognisable form of Flandre Scarlet in front of me.
“H-hello, F-Flandre… I see you’re alright now.”
“Yeah, that nasty woman really hurt me.” She spoke with a childish sadness.
Wasn’t it to stop you from killing her, and me at that matter?
“It was fun though, we’ll have to play again sometime!” Flandre shouted cheerfully. Her personality has done a complete 180 since I last saw her.
I paused for a moment, “Well, if I have to play, maybe something not too violent, maybe tag, or hide and seek.”
“Okay! It’s a deal!” Flandre jumped happily until someone shouted her name. Turning to look where it came from, I could only guess it was the other residents of the mansion, Remilia Scarlet being the silver haired vampire who looked similar to Flandre, only slightly more mature and with real looking wings, being the source of the voice. Alongside her was a maid, who I guessed was Sakuya Izayoi, someone reading a book that had to be Patchouli Knowledge and Hong Meirin who I had met before.
As Flandre ran over to her family waving and shouting “Bye!” I let out a sigh of relief at not having to deal with a near-death encounter and continued on.
I also passed by Cirno and her group who were cheering on Mystia who had begun singing along with the music, even though the lyrics she was singing made no sense whatsoever. Still, the rhythm sounded good and it went with the mood of the festival. The only gang member not present was Wriggle, who was sat down by herself, seemingly enjoying herself, until Suika turned up and began talking to her, which instantly made her look uncomfortable.
I sat down next to Yuka again, who looked to be swaying from side to side almost unnoticeably to the music, “So, are you enjoying yourself?” I asked.
“There’s no reason not to be is there, that’s what festivals are for.”
“I guess so.” I paused for a moment thinking of something to say, “So, everyone here, I gather you’ve beat them all?”
“Oh?” I was quite surprised at the answer.
”The newcomers over there.” Yuka pointed at a group on the other side of the shrine, though I couldn’t see very well, one had large purple hair and was wearing a red dress with what looked like a large piece of rope behind her. Next to her sat a green haired girl wearing a blue dress similar to Reimu’s, which suggested she was a Miko and the final one was a younger looking girl with long blonde hair, a purple dress and a strange brown hat with what appeared to be eyes on it.
“They’re new here, only the witch and the Miko have actually fought with them yet, I’ll get my chance though.” Yuka spoke with her menacing grin.
“I had a feeling you’d say that.” Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed that Suika was trying to make Wriggle drink from the purple flask despite the complaints from her. Leaving them to it, I turned my head back to Yuka and noticed someone flying overhead.
There were actually two figures high above, one was a short blonde haired girl wearing a blue dress decorated with pink ribbons and a white scarf-like object, also by her were two small humanoid objects, which led me to believe it was Alice Margatroid, someone know for her use of dolls. The other was a woman with silver hair, which ended in a pigtail and wore fairly simple red robes with a pink shirt or similar object under that.
“Who’s that?” I said out loud.
“Oh look, it’s Shinki!” Yuka shouted perkily.
Shinki turned and noticed Yuka and waved before continuing to follow Alice to the shrine. “Well, come on, let’s go meet her!” Yuka ordered before strolling after Shinki.
I turned to see what Elly was doing but she was nowhere to be seen and Wriggle was swaying from side to side alongside Suika who were both trying to sing along with the music, badly, so I just got up and went to meet the goddess of Makai.
By the time I got there, there was already a small crowd; Shinki and Alice were being greeted by Reimu, Marisa, Mima and Yuka. “It’s so been so long since I’ve seen you all!” Shinki shouted excitedly, “Apart from Mima of course, and I see you haven’t taken long to make yourself at home.” Shinki looked around at everyone partying.
Mima laughed, “Well, of course, what else are you to do?”
Reimu added, “You’re the one I have to thank for making HER a god?” Still not pleased about Mima.
The conversation went on, talking about the old times and when they last met, which wasn’t too fun for me, since I had no idea what the hell they were talking about. Eventually they started to begin talking about a reunion fight, however it was quickly stopped by the complaints of Reimu, not wanting her shrine demolished by collateral damage by Shinki
After the disappointment, the others whispered between them, no doubt organising another location for some time.
The party picked up even more at that point, the music seemed to have got louder and people were starting to head to the front, to dance or talk, generally more party like behaviour.
The fact all of the residents of Gensokyo were together, having a good time, whether they be human, youkai even a death god felt somewhat… inspiring, even arch-enemies such as Mokou and Kaguya haven’t torn into each other’s throats yet, nor did Flandre attempt anything violent. I thought that even Yuka had done well, I know how much she wants to fight the newcomers she pointed out, yet had refrained from it.
I was unsure why, but I was enjoying everything, though I hardly knew anyone, everyone felt like friends and there was just a good feeling in the atmosphere, and for once I wanted to stay here and not go-
Suddenly, a jolt went through my body and the next thing I knew, I was lying on the floor, unable to move.
Return to Fiction by Mima