Let's Play Sengoku Gensokyo - Day 50-51

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Another quick trip to the SDM gate brings us to a confrontation with Meiling. While strong at close range, she falls prey fairly easily to long-range attacks. She is capable of self-healing, though, so she must be defeated decisively.


We've got the gate's defense pretty low by now, but as I said earlier, there's a CG cutscene that can only be gotten if you wait on capturing the gate. So...we'll wait an extra turn.



**********

The maids were cleaning the very long corridors of the Scarlet Devil Mansion. They made sure that not even a speck of dust remained in case visitors arrived at any time. The head of the mansion would tolerate nothing less. But although they were called maids, they were mostly fairies, and pretty much useless. The head maid, Sakuya Izayoi, was once again working extremely hard to pick up the slack of the maids she supervised.

Sakuya: Ahh, please handle that corridor. You, take that one, and you, wipe the soot off the light please.

The fairy maids scampered off as they received Sakuya's instructions. From a human's perspective, they were taking all the time in the world, but fairies simply did not know how to do things hurriedly.

My, this always happens...I suppose I shall have to make up for them.

The maids generally could not be counted upon, which meant that the SDM was mostly maintained by just Sakuya alone. She made that impossible feat possible through her power...The manipulation of time.

Whew...That should do it.

Anyone else looking at the situation would have seen the place cleaned up in an instant, but it was actually Sakuya stopping time and painstakingly cleaning everything, which left her considerably tired.


Fairies are useless no matter how many of them there are, you never know what youkai are plotting, and humans don't come here...If only there were 4 of me.

In the past, that dream was supposed to come true, courtesy of Patchouli's strange magic experiments...But it didn't turn out quite as planned, and it was a solemn reminder to Sakuya that there could only be one.

Well, I suppose I wouldn't feel comfrtable with letting anyone else handle my job either...so I shall do my best for Milady's sake.

Though she always mourned about how busy she was, there was no one who could match her standards of perfection, so being busy with all the affairs of the mansion practically became a status symbol for her.

Fairy Maid: Wah, wah, wahhh~! It broke! What should I do!?

Ahh, what's done is done...There's a spare in the storehouse, so grab the similar-looking thing and come back.

Okay, I'll be back~.

If she worked alone, she might well make more progress than the quantity-over-quality fairy maid brigade...Those thoughts continued to run through her head as she picked up the broken pieces of glass.

Here it is!

Exchange it for the broken one. Make sure not to break it from now on.

Even after giving out the orders, she still watched worriedly over the maid as she performed her task uncertainly. She couldn've done it faster herself, but she wanted to give the maids some work to do, at least.

Okay now...Ahh, it's already this time? ...Hey, you. Can you go and relieve Meiling of her gatekeeper duties? It's about time for her break.

Okay!

Sakuya watched the maid fly off, then continued cleaning up what the maids left behind. She passed by a window as she cleaned, which gave her a good look at Meiling frolicking in the flower garden outside.


...Good grief, does she even know what stress is? Perhaps I should teach her to work a little harder.

Ever since the Scarlet Mist incident, the Scarlet Devil Mansion had an unusually warm atmosphere. From Sakuya's standpoint, this was not a bad thing, but people should not lose their sharpness because of it.

**********

The maids counterattack one more time, but just like Sakuya says, they're mostly useless. Master Spark wipes them out pretty handily.



**********

Meiling: Hmm, I wonder why she called me up so suddenly? Maybe...maybe she's angry about the incident that just happened...Ahh, I don't want to go now.

Meiling was walking down the long corridors of the SDM, having been called over by Sakuya. She wasn't sure why...But after giving it some thought, she couldn't imagine that it was anything but the Yukari incident.

It may have been my duty...But it was the first time I've felt such a pressurizing aura...Ahh, but I definitely failed there...

Sakuya: Perhaps you understand better than I thought.

Wah!? M-Ms. Sakuya, when did you get here!?

She was grumbling as she walked down the corridor, when Sakuya's sudden voice made her stand up straight in fright. Sakuya herself had shown up at some point, and was now leaning against a wall.

Just now.

Were you stopping time in order to appear like that? What a weird hobby...

What did you say?

Oh, nothing. Anyway, I thought you wanted to talk with me at the parlour? Why are you here?

Ahh, I didn't think it was so important as to use that place. As for the matter I wanted to bring up...

Sakuya's sharp gaze was piercing daggers at Meiling.


This isn't aimed at you particularly. It should be aimed at all of the mansion's workers...Don't you think that you've been too loose in your work lately?

Too loose...So it's about the incident from the other day, huh?

That is part of it, but I saw you happily dancing around the flower field recently as well.

Wah, you were watching me...? I was on my break, so I was just relaxing and unwinding.

While that may be the case, one must always be on their guard as long as they are outside the mansion, regardless of whether they are on their break or not. Imagine what would happen if an enemy came while you were behaving like I saw you. They would be able to easily ambush you, wouldn't they?

That's...

There are a lot of times where dangerous intruders try to enter the mansion...like when Reimu and Marisa did so, and like the recent incident. It is worrying if our imperfect gatekeeper lets her guard down as she thinks there are no enemies around. It makes you no better than a placeholder.

......!

Meiling had been quietly listening to Sakuya's scolding, but her face started to stiffen as Sakuya's tone got worse. As someone who had protected the SDM's gate for ages, it was not something she could let go.

As long as you harden your attitude, Milady and I will have less to worry about, and I will not criticize you any further...That is all, you may leave.

Ms. Sakuya...I mean, Ms. Head Maid.

W-What?

Do you not thing that manner of speaking makes it sound like I am below you?

That was not my purpose...But is that not the truth?


...I was accepted by Milady, and given the duty of protecting the gate. Ever since then, I am very proud of the dedication I have put into my job. Yet, you used such a minor example to justify saying that I am "no better than a placeholder"...I simply cannot accept such a line of thought.

Are you trying to say that your work as a gatekeeper is perfect? I'm sure that even you wouldn't claim as such.

...It is true that I have weaknesses. But if you are putting the blame on me, don't you think that's disrespectful to the one who assigned me this duty?

Wha...!?

You said earlier that I would trouble you and Milady. Milady is an extraordinary case, but I do not think there is anything you can do that I can't.

...So in short, you are trying to say that I am weaker than you?

Ms. Head Maid, I do not think the difference between you and I is a matter of strength or power.

Oh really...

BGM: Tremors of Hostility

Sakuya and Meiling did not move even one step back from their confrontation. Both of them had their pride, and would not withdraw in this kind of situation.

...Stop beating around the bush. You basically do not accept me. Am I correct?

Milady accepted you, thus I have done so as well...What I won't accept is you looking down on me in disdain. That is all.

Then perhaps you should not act in a fashion that would invite such disdain.

It was obvious that their thinly-veiled snipes would not come to an end so easily. The short period of uneasy silence lingered, until a third party's voice broke the stormy atmosphere.

Remilia: ...Goodness, and I was wondering what the fuss was all about.

Milady! What are you doing here?

With the way you two were talking, even those who didn't want to hear you had to do so.

P-Please forgive me...


Neither of you will be happy if it's left like this, so let's finish this up quickly. Let's see you two fight each other.

Fight...each other?

It's the most appropriate way to decide who's weak and who's strong. I've decide that's what we'll do, so hurry up already.

...Milady, you just find this amusing, don't you...

**********


The two quarreling parties faced off in front of the gate. Remilia had said that they should fight outside so they wouldn't make a mess of the mansion, though she insisted on the fight in the first place.

Remilia: I shall be watching the event, so go at it seriously. But don't go too far.

Sakuya: I would do so even if you weren't there, Milady...Meiling, I would never have thought that I would face you like this.

Meiling: I feel exactly the same...But I will not hold back.

Neither will I. Well then...Shall we begin?

BGM: Luna Clock ~ Luna Dial ~ Sengoku Arr. ~

Both combatants circled each other slowly, waiting for a gap to open. The tension was completely unlike what one would find in a spellcard rules battle. In an instant, the sielcne ended.

Tsk!!

She threw several of the knives she was holding at Meiling. Meiling easily knocked them all away, but in the next instant, Sakuya was right in fronte of her.

The knives were a feint...Just as I thought!

She predicted...Ugh!?

Sakuya had followed up her knives attack with a sharp spinning kick. But Meiling stooped to dodge it, and kicked upwards as she stood up, landing a direct hit on Sakuya's chin.

There!

Umph...You think that's enough!?

Eh...Uwah!?

Sakuya seemed to be flying in the air from the force of the kick, but she somersaulted, landed, and immediately threw out a powerful kick. Meiling tried to block, but the strength of the kick caused her to stagger back.

Oof...You didn't try to follow up, huh? It was such a good chance too.

I will not bite so easily. You were already preparing chi in the back of your palm in case I got careless, were you not?

...Heh, I guess that doesn't work in a real battle. And I practiced so hard, too...I should've figured that you'd see through it.

Perhaps I may not have mentioned this, but I am much more confident in my skills at a melee battle than a danmaku battle.

Is that so? Then that's an even bigger reason for me to beat you.

Heh heh...Have you not noticed? Your duty as a gatekeeper means that you are always prepared to fight many opponents at once. Your chi may be effective against several enemies at a time, but in a 1-on-1 battle, your attacking options are limited. I will confirm that for you right now!

Many knives formed into Sakuya's hands as she shouted. She then jumped backwards to open up distance, and threw several knives aimed above her. The knives stopped dead right above, then turned to point at her.

Tch...I can still handle this!

The knives took turns to fly towards Meiling, one by one. Meiling knocked them aside with the back of her hand as they came, but the knives that fell back to the floor would float back up and rejoin the pack.

You now have an endless supply of knives being thrown at you eternally. What will you do?

So your strategy is to wear me down? It is true that I won't be able to escape this without taking some damage...So as you wish...!

The hand that was meant to attack Sakuya released all the chi it stored, glowing a rainbow-coloured aura that slowly grew, swirled and enveloped Meiling. The barrier-like aura then began to swallow up the knives.

...I'll just take them all out!


Meiling began to float upwards as the swirl of light eventually caught all the unmoving knives into it.

Just as I thought...That is your only recourse when surrounded. And when you have your chi scattered around...You can't defend against what's in front of you!

Sakuya produced a single silver knife, and threw it directly at Meiling. Its trajectory and speed would make it land a direct, powerful hit on the mostly defenseless Meiling...or so, she thought.

I knew...you would...do that!

Ehh...!?

Meiling twisted her body, barely dodging the knife aimed at her. The right hand near her waist was once again beginning to absorb all the chi that was scattered about.

That was your intention all the while!? But you can't hit me from there!

And now...Haaaaaah!!

Meiling's tension reached its limit. Her chi-powered hand rotated to her front, and the chi shot out towards Sakuya. The invisible chi bullet grazed Sakuya's cheek, and hit the ground behind, leaving a gaping hole.

Impossible...Since when could you do this kind of move...!?

It didn't work...You're not so naive as to be beaten by that, I see.

Sakuya looked backwards, dumbfounded at the crater in the ground behind her. Meiling landed back on the ground and resumed her fighting stance with a bitter smile. Sakuya slowly turned back, with a similar expression.


...Not bad. To be honest, I've always thought of you as the "Unreliable Gatekeeper", but that estimation of your worth has ended today.

I'm glad to hear that...Should I be, actually?

Both of them had failed to land their killer blows, so the battle continued. They couldn't keep up their long range battle from before, and a melee battle would make it hard for either of them to avoid taking damage.

(...It would be difficult to hit with any thrown knives from now on, and I would be in trouble if I take a counterattack like that one directly...)

(...But based on her movements earlier, a careless frontal attack would probably earn me a severe counter for my troubles...)

With their trump cards lost, the staredown continued. Their bodies were tiring, and their movements were beginning to get sluggish. Finally, an intruder called them out from the world of their own.

BGM: Moon Rabbit ~Bathed in Moonlight~

That's enough!

...!? Milady!

Why must we stop!? I can still go on!

Both of you were never going to give up from the beginning anyway. Would you prefer this to continue on to the day, and see me burn to ashes?

T-That's...Understood.

Sakuya and Meiling both finally relaxed their posture at their master's order. It was true that continuing on would not have done anything, and there was a sense of relief that they came out relatively injury-free.

...So, how was it? Is everything cleared up yet? And I do mean everything.

...Yes, I'm sorry that you had to bother yourself with our personal problems, Milady.


It's my fault. All those things I said earlier...I take them all back.

No, I also said a lot of provocative things...I'm sorry.

That was such a waste of time...Ah-ah, I'm hungry!

I shall prepare something at once...Meiling, please continue to protect the gate. I will bring you some food later.

...Yes, you can count on me!

...Those who live in the same place, or even serve the same master, may not always share opinions. But it is when parties recognize and accept the differences that a mutual understanding can eventually be reached. Perhaps...Just perhaps, Remilia had foresaw this occurring, and stoked up the flames between them? Only Remilia herself would ever know...From then on, the two never had major problems with each other again.

**********

Turn: 51
Ouki: 14667
Ryumaku: 62/92
Actions Available: 2

Our Territories:

Hakurei Shrine
Defense: 250/250
Cost to Develop: 24 RES

Night-Blind Road
Defense: 160/160
Cost to Develop: 33 RES

Faintly Dark Path
Defense: 175/175
Cost to Develop: 33 RES

Magic Forest Entrance
Defense: 180/180
Cost to Develop: 33 RES

Magic Forest Border
Defense: 160/160
Cost to Develop: 33 RES

Magic Forest Interior
Defense: 210/210
cost to Develop: 9 RES

Road of Reconsideration
Defense: 190/190
Cost to Develop: 30 RES

Muenzuka
Defense: 215/215
Cost to Develop: 6 RES

Human Village
Defense: 310/310
Cost to Develop: 24 RES

Garden of the Sun
Defense: 175/175
Cost to Develop: 9

Nameless Hill
Defense: 205/205
Cost to Develop: 6

Misty Lake
Defense: 225/225
Cost to Develop: 6

Enemy Territories:

Lost Bamboo Forest
Army: Eientei Forest
General: Reisen Udongein Inaba
Defense: 205/205

Eientei
Army: Eientei Forest
General: Kaguya Houraisan (leader)
Defense: 230/230

Blossoms Barrier
Army: Hakugyokurou Hades
General: Prismriver Sisters
Defense: 220/220

Hakugyokurou Stairs
Army: Hakugyokurou Hades
General: Youmu Konpaku
Defense: 200/200

Hakugyokurou
Army: Hakugyokurou Hades
General: Yuyuko Saigyouji (leader)
Defense: 235/235

SDM Gate
Army: Crimson SDM
General: Hong Meiling
Defense: 34/230

Great Library
Army: Crimson SDM
General: Patchouli Knowledge
Defense: 195/195

Clock Tower
Army: Crimson SDM
General: Sakuya Izayoi
Defense: 210/210

SDM Top Floor
Army: Crimson SDM
General: Remilia Scarlet (leader)
Defense: 225/225

Yakumo Residence
Army: Yakumo Clan
General: Yukari Yakumo (leader)
Defense: 310/310

Special Events:

War Declaration: Eientei Forest
Costs 10 NEG to declare war.

War Declaration: Hakugyokurou Hades
Costs 12 NEG to declare war.

War Declaration: Yakumo Clan
Costs 10 NEG to declare war.


You asked, so here's an extra day with the second SDM CG cutscene. An awesome one, if I do say so myself.