No longer tolerating our aggression, Keine decides that it's now time for her to take to the field.
BGM: Plain Asia ~ Sengoku Arr. ~
We immediately target Aya as the number one threat, and beat her down with our best attackers regardless of range. The three humans that accompanied them likewise went down quickly, although Reimu went down during the crossfire. During the few turns that we spent defeating them, though, Keine scored heavy hits and took barely any damage in return. Soon after, she was the only one standing on the enemy's field, yet she had over half of her team's counter guage all for herself to use. We expend everything we have, yet still couldn't defeat Keine and her immense defenses. We could only watch as she steadily chipped away at our lead. Miraculously, she failed to KO anyone else, although she came pretty close.
We manage a moderate victory, and also pick up an item drop: another Book of Wisdom.
Sousuke Jinbara became an ally.
Akyu: Ms. Keine, we have an emergency~!
Keine was at the elementary school, enjoying the peace and quiet of after-hours. But that calmness was broken to pieces by the worried voice of Akyu.
Keine: It's rare to see you so distressed, Lady Akyu...What's going on?
Please come with me and see it for yourself!
H-Hey...Alright, no need to drag me...
Akyu stopped trying to drag Keine along, and instead started to run. Keine followed behind her, trying not to lose track of her. They quickly reached a place with a large crowd of people.
Hm, what's happening here?
They pushed their way through the people to the center. They could hear voices of anger, mixed with a certain familiar voice. They eventually reached the center, and found Aya and some villagers quarreling.
Villager #1: Why you...Care to repeat that!?
Aya: As many times as you like. You weak humans will only be a burden on a superior youkai like myself. I do not need assistance from any of you.
Villager #2: How dare you insult us like that...!
[COLOR="DarkSlateGray"]I'm in this army as a result of a fair trade that benefits both sides. I'm not obligated to care about what humans think. And don't you think you all being angry at my opinion is meaningless without actions to back it up? Do any of you think you can match my speed?
Villager #3: Ugh...
I'm not hearing any responses. See? Just me alone is enough.
.....That's how it's been...
...This has clearly gone much too far.
Hearing a few lines of this argument was more than enough to figure out why Akyu was so worried. With a large sigh, Keine stepped up and stood firmly between the two parties.
What do you all think you're doing? Kindly stop at once.
Villager #1: Ah, Ms. Keine! Please listen, this youkai has been badmouthing us over and over...
It is not badmouthing, I am simply stating the facts.
Don't bother, I can already tell what's going on.
Keine waved the villager away, grimacing. Whether she thought the matter was annoying or not, she did her best not to outwardly display it.
...Let's start with you.
Keine swiveled towards Aya. Aya looked as proud and haughty as ever, full of self-confidence and belief that all she said was true.
Reasons and objectives aside, it'll be a huge problem if you cannot cooperate with everyone involved in this event.
Weak humans will only be a burden to me. Let me fight alone, and my effectiveness, as well as our chance of winning, will increase tremendously.
Villager #2: That birdo has been like that the whole time, Lady Keine. She just keeps going on and on as she likes about how we're weak and useless.
You do not address a lady so rudely, thank you very much.
Crow: Caw! Caw!
A crow sat on Aya's shoulder, presumably being her familiar. It crowed at the villager, as if jeering at him.
Villager #3: Damnit, even a crow is making fun of us...!
I know already, so quit it!
Keine quickly held the two villagers back, not wanting the fight to restart. But what could be done here...? As she mulled over what to do, Aya made an interesting proposal.
If you do not understand through words, then perhaps actions would work better. If the pen does not work, then let us move on to the sword.
What do you mean?
Let's play a game of tag.
Aya's words caught Keine off-guard, and all she and the villagers could do was blurt out a surprised response. Aya ignored all of them and continued with her proposal.
I take great pride in my speed. I am the fastest in Gensokyo, after all. I will not accept the thought of any of you laying a finger on me. If a miracle happens and I am caught, I will be quiet and do as I'm told. But otherwise, I will continue to do as I please.
Villager #1: Of course you pick the game that you have the biggest advantage in!
That's natural in the world of battles. Of course, I wouldn't lose to a human in any battle, but this will be more peaceful than a danmaku battle or a fistfight.
Hmm...Well, that is reasonable, but...
You can refuse if you wish, of course. But I will treat it as a no-contest victory on my end.
Aya's constant provocation, combined with most of the villagers being quite passionate, led to the villagers wanting to accept her challenge. They would not take her words lying down.
Villager #2: Hmph, let's do this! We'll show you!
Villager #3: Yeah! As long as Ms. Keine agrees to it.
Hm...Fine, as long as both parties agree to it, I'll allow it. But I want no future trouble regardless of who wins or loses.
She's right, you all will need to be obedient and listen to me~.
Villager #1: You think you've won already...? You'll pay for that!
I have only one rule. Neither side are allowed to leave the village for the duration of the game. Is that acceptable?
Understood. Let's begin!
Aya immediately took to the skies as the words came out of her mouth. She then sped downwards to hover right above the ground. The villagers tried to give chase, but she would fly upwards when they got close.
Mm, flying in the sky feels so good~!
Villager #3: Come down here, you!
A villager was about to grab her ankle, but a swift flight upwards easily dodge the attempt.
Villager #2: ...Why you!
Such simple tactics won't work on me.
Another villager tried to sneak up behind her, but she easily slipped away just as he was about to pounce.
Villager #1: Wait, damnit!
What kind of youkai would wait just because you told her to~?
Yet another villager tried to chase after Aya at full speed, but Aya simply left him in her dust. The gap between the abilities of the two sides was evident...It was like a battle between a man and a baby.
Oh dear...This is not much of a contest at all...
It's quite worrying...But there isn't much we can do.
It was true that Aya was important to their war effort. But all the cons she also brought with her made that practically meaningless. The proud crow tengu would normally never cooperate with mere humans.
...This is getting boring. You're all just wasting your time, you know.
Villager #1: *pant pant*...S-Shaddup!
15 minutes had passed. Not a single one of the villagers were able to catch Aya. There were many curious onlookers at first, but they quickly lost interest, and only Keine and Akyu remained.
Well, I suppose this was expected...No human can match a crow tengu's speed.
But at this rate...
Akyu was worried that if this ended up as a complete victory for Aya, she would no longer listen to orders and act completely of her own accord. The villagers would not be amused, and the foundations of cooperation and understanding between humans and youkai would crumble away. At the very least, Akyu wanted to avoid that outcome.
Geez, no matter how hard you try, it's useless!
Aya flew off into the distance in an instant, leaving her words behind. As Aya's figure shrunk smaller and smaller, the villagers similarly lost their willpower and energy to chase after her.
And so it ends...
...Just when Keine and the villagers were about to give up, Akyu unexpectedly opened her mouth.
Um...Ms. Keine, may I lend my assistance?
Hm? Ah, that shouldn't be a problem, but...Forgive my impoliteness, but I don't think you can do anything to help at this point...
What Keine had said seemed all too true, but Akyu answered with a worry-free smile.
I believe we spoke about this matter before. The difference between victory and defeat is knowledge...so just leave this to me. Excuse me, everyone!
As a plan began to form in Akyu's mind, she called the surprised villagers over, and gave each and every one of them a specific set of instructions to follow.
...I have...So, everyone will...
Villager #3: I see...Will we really be able to pull that off, though?
I do not know...And we will never know if we do not try. I will be right back, Ms. Keine.
With those words, the people that Akyu instructed went off in different directions. Akyu herself ran off to somewhere unknown as well.
Ah-ah, how boring. You all wouldn't even be able to beat a newborn baby tengu like this.
Aya was floating at the sky over the edge of the village, idly grumbling. The thought of humans possibly beating her never crossed her mind, but she expected them to put up a much better fight.
Perhaps I should have talked with Ms. Akyu from the beginning and avoided all this silly nonsense.
Aya started talking to her crow familiar, nesting on her stomach. The crow replied with a cry...but it then started flapping its wings furiously.
Huh? What's wrong?
Ah, hey, wait!
The crow ignored Aya's orders and shot like an arrow to its target. Aya chased after it, and discovered a glittering light on the ground that had caught its attention.
As the crow approached the light, the closely-following Aya identified it as glass fragments and a ball made of glass, presumably a child's toy. The crow happily picked them up with his beak and played with them.
Now now, don't be greedy, you'll embarass me. I don't remember these things being here though...Ah!
Villager #1: Now!
Aya realized something was odd, and tried to grab her crow and return to the sky, but the net was already falling from overhead. The crow's feet and wings became entangled as it cried pitifully.
Crow: Cawww?! Cawww!!
Ahh, geez...You deal with that yourself!
Villager #2: There!
Aya gave up on saving the crow and was about to take to the skies again, when another net was thrown at her. She just barely dodged it and was trying to regain her composure, when...
Villager #3: How do you like this!?
BGM: Roll Back ~ From Now
A third net was thrown right after. Aya could not escape it, and her ankle became entwined around the net as they both fell to the ground. She hurriedly tried to free her ankle, but someone grabbed her from behind.
...There, you are caught. Victory is ours.
Hm, that was quite a battle.
The villagers surrounding Aya erupted in cheers and shouts of joy as Keine and Akyu declared their victory. But Aya was still unable to accept her defeat, and started to protest loudly.
This kind of sneak attack is unfair! It's so sly!
A loss is a loss. Take your defeat with grace.
I did not lose, no one was able to catch up to me!
Get over yourself!
It may be true that individually, humans are no match for you. But that is only the case in a one-on-one matchup.
Ooh...But, you see...
No matter how strong you are, if the enemy has numbers and brains on their side, you will be exposed like just now. Power alone means nothing!
Ooh.........Okay, okay! Fine! I lost!
So now, you shall fight alongside the villagers without any complaints, understood?
Understood! The proud crow tengu never go back on a promise!
Aya managed to force the words out. The surrounding villagers went wild at her admission of defeat. Aya could not go against them any longer, so she instead directed her anger at the crow still caught in the net.
You...stupid crow! How could you fall for such a simple trick!? I'm going to sell you to a grilled chicken stand!
Crow: Caw!? Cawww!
Dear me...I have to admit, though, that was quite a plan, Lady Akyu.
Yes, I asked everyone to look for items that reflected light to act as a lure...It is the nature of a crow to be attracted to light, after all.
It would be nice if she learned from this experience...
The villagers, Akyu, and even Keine would have no chance of winning a direct one-on-one fight against Aya. But that is why allies and knowledge exist. With both of those, Aya would not have been caught. Youkai were generally loners who preferred to work alone. To Keine, humans being the exact opposite was what made them wonderful.
Actions Available: 2
Cost to Develop: 24 RES
Cost to Develop: 27 RES
Faintly Dark Path
Cost to Develop: 30 RES
Magic Forest Entrance
Cost to Develop: 24 RES
Magic Forest Border
Cost to Develop: 30 RES
Magic Forest Interior
cost to Develop: 9 RES
Road of Reconsideration
Cost to Develop: 9 RES
Cost to Develop: 6 RES
Army: Human Village Corps
General: Keine Kamishirasawa (leader)