Author Topic: The Girl in the Cave  (Read 12915 times)

Ryuu

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The Girl in the Cave
« on: August 11, 2010, 12:59:15 AM »
itt words words words words words, I hope you enjoy

----

   Moisture gathered on the stalactites, condensing and gathering at the tip, reflecting the distant flickering of light. The droplet would grow in size before finally releasing itself from the ceiling of the cave, and it would fall, the glittering light it mirrored giving it the appearance of a falling jewel. It would land on the girl?s neck and slide into the small pool cradled by her collarbone. Another would follow its path, and another. She no longer noticed the frigid temperature of the drops, or of the pool she drifted in. This was Parsee?s home, and she hated it.

   Her arms were outstretched, floating and still. At the end of her left hand, there was a steady point of light, the path to the world above ground. To her right, there were many small, glittering lights, the city where the oni dwelled. But those were not places she belonged, nor were they places she would be accepted. Her only home was here, the dark damp cave connecting the two. Her only fate was to watch those who would cross from the shadows. She despised it, she clenched her fist and she glared at the dripping water.

   She heard voices. Oni from the city below crossing her ?bridge?. She hated calling it that. She wasn?t even granted a physical bridge she could live under; just a dingy cave between a city of parties and a dazzling overworld.

   She recognized the oni as they passed. The shorter one, showing off her cute looks, always mostly drunk, carrying around that fancy gourd. The taller one, a well-toned beauty showing off her legs with that translucent skirt. They both would ramble loudly, and occasionally the tall one might nod in Parsee?s direction as she passed. Parsee couldn?t stand it. Why were those two able to move from place to place and not her? Why were those two allowed to party and not her? Why were those two so pretty and not her?

   There was a muffled sound of wood clunking against rock, a yell and Parsee suddenly found her vision obscured. In the next instant, a great weight was pulling her down, and water began flooding her mouth and lungs. Instinctively, she tried to struggle to the surface, but the thing dragging her down was too heavy for her to move. Something grabbed her, and she found herself being moved about the pool. Her head broke the surface and she immediately began coughing up water. Whatever else was in the water lifted Parsee up, and set her at the edge of the pool?s basin.

   ?Sorry about that!? The voice came from in front of her, bringing with it the sweet smell of sake. Parsee wiped the excess water from her eyes and opened them. The taller oni was beaming at her. ?You okay??

   Parsee clutched at the wet clothing clinging to her chest and nodded slightly.

   ?Yuugi!? The smaller oni called from the other end of the cave, waving a small crate above her head. ?Hurry up~! They?re gonna drink it all without us!?

   The tall oni turned and yelled to the small oni, before turning and staring at Parsee for a moment. Parsee unconsciously drew her arms tighter around her body. The tall oni flashed a bright grin, lifted herself from the water and jogged over to her partner, geta clunking and water dripping all over the place. The two began conversing, and Parsee watched. She wished they would move on. That they would leave her be. It was bad enough watching them move between the above ground and underground. She heard clinking glass, and the taller oni returned holding a dusty bottle.

   ?Here!? She held it out. Parsee took it silently and rolled it in her hands. There was no label. ?It?s sake! My way of apologizing.? Parsee nodded. ?Yuugi Hoshiguma.? The taller oni extended a hand.

   Parsee hesitated. Slowly she extended her hand and grasped the oni?s. Her skin was rough, calloused with hard work Parsee would never experience, fights Parsee would never engage in, parties Parsee would never be able to attend. The oni?s grip was firm, a striking contrast from Parsee?s weak own.

   ?Yuugi!? The smaller oni yelled again. ?Come oooon!?

   ?Gotta go!? Yuugi stood to her full height and gave a quick parting wave. ?See you later!?

   Parsee watched the two depart before observing the bottle in her hands again. Tinted green glass and a clear liquid. She imagined it would be a beautiful spectacle to behold its reflections in light. With some effort, she eventually worked out the cork and put the bottle to her lips. The liquid was oddly dry, filling her throat with a strange burning sensation as she drank it. So this is what they drank? It was strange. Parsee tipped the bottle up again, and she began filling with a warmth that seemed to radiate from her stomach outward.

   ...How unfair.

---

   ?Yo~!? The door to the shrine opened, bringing the voice of a tiny oni and the welcome sound of clinking sake bottles from the Ancient City.

   ?About time.? Reimu sighed. ?It?s not a party without sa?? Reimu paused, observing the two in her entranceway. ?Yuugi. May I ask why you are soaked??

   ?Oh.? Yuugi scratched the back of her head. ?I fell in a puddle.?

   After Reimu forced Yuugi into a side room and into an old, but considerably more dry spare yukata, they rejoined the festivities in a suspiciously large room in the back. It wouldn?t be inaccurate to say that a large portion of Gensokyo?s population were gathered around several tables.

   ?Well,? Reimu answered when Yuugi asked, ?When you consider who we drink with...?

   ?Good point.?

   They took a seat at a large table in the center. On Yuugi?s left, Suika had already let herself go entirely, and was hanging off of Yukari?s shoulder. On her right, Remilia was positioned in Sakuya?s lap, leaning into the head maid?s shoulder and sipping a glass of red wine. Across from her, Reimu took a seat next to Satori.

   ?So I see we already need to catch up with ya, Suika.? Yuugi nudged her fellow Deva in the ribs. Suika said something incoherent and laughed in response, before rolling down Yukari?s arm and into her lap.

   ?Let?s hurry up then.? Reimu poured some sake into her dish. ?Cheers!?

   The table shared a round of sake from ornate dishes that Yukari had claimed from ?somewhere?. The others decided it was probably best not to inquire about it.

   ?Say, Yuugi.? Reimu started suddenly. ?Your box was missing a bottle.?   

   ?Oh, you noticed?? Yuugi smiled and drank another dish of sake. ?Yeah, I gave it to...? Yuugi trailed off and Reimu tilted her head slightly. ?Suika, what was that girl?s name??

   ?Whaggirl??

   ?The one we saw coming up here. You know, between the Ancient City and??

   ?Do you mean Parsee?? Satori spoke up suddenly.

   ?Uh, kinda short, blond hair, green eyes??

   ?Yes. She?s the bridge princess who guards the path between the underworld and here.?

   ?Oh.? Yuugi scratched her head and poured another dish of sake.

   ?I recall that girl.? Remilia nuzzled deeper into Sakuya?s chest. ?After the incident a while ago, I got curious and decided to take a stroll into the City. She made the mistake of challenging me to a duel.?

   ?Milady won most splendidly.? Sakuya added, rubbing the top of Remilia?s head. The vampire smiled and raised her head into the maid?s hand, while Satori suddenly looked very uncomfortable and buried her face in another dish of sake.

   ?Her heart is a very negative one.? Satori chimed in, trying to distract herself from Remilia. ?It is probably because she is chained to that place.?

   ?Huh?? Yuugi looked up from a Suika who had decided to wrap around Yuugi?s midsection. ?Chained??

   ?Yes.? Yukari finally set down her dish and turned to Yuugi with an already red face. ?As a bridge princess, she is unable to leave the area she is guarding.?

   ?That sucks.?  Yuugi filled her dish, passed the bottle to Reimu across the table, and crossed her arms. ?Ya can?t party living like that.?

   ?Indeed.? Satori gazed at Yuugi with calculating eyes. She opened her mouth to speak again before Reimu interrupted.

   ?This is too gloomy. Let?s stop worrying about it and drink some more.?

   The night wore on, and the conversations remained merry from that point forward. However, Yuugi had begun drinking more and more slowly as the night wore on. Eventually, Yuugi rose from the table and excused herself.

   ?Goin? alreaaadyyy?? Suika pouted over her new lack of pillow, but quickly concluded that Yukari was acceptable substitute... again.

   ?Yeah, y?know how those oni are.? Yuugi shrugged. ?If I?m gone any longer, I might not have a house to come back to!?

   ?Sounds rough.? Reimu was resting her head in her arms. ?See you.?

   Yuugi nodded and waved, exiting the party room without so much as a drunken wobble. It was only when she was putting on her geta at the door that she felt like someone had followed her. She turned to find a small frame of purple standing in the hall.

   ?Yuugi.? Satori?s eyes were emotionless and cold. ?I would suggest not getting involved with Parsee.?

   ?Wasn?t thinkin? anything of the sort!? Yuugi grinned confidently. Satori?s expression did not change. Yuugi laughed and ran a hand through her bangs. ?Guess there?s no lyin? to you, huh? Well, I can?t just sit in good conscience while there?s someone out there who?s not partyin?.?

   A fleeting grin crossed Satori?s face. ?An oni talking about good conscience...? She shook her head, and her cold expression returned. ?But, even so. Getting involved will only cause pain. To you, and to her.?

   Yuugi?s own face grew more serious as she deliberated Satori?s words. What did she mean, exactly? She recalled what they spoke about earlier... a negative heart and bound to a single place. Yuugi wasn?t sure why, but the more she thought about it, the less she wanted to listen to Satori?s words, and the less her reasoning became about compassion. No, now it was a challenge.

   ?I see my words have had a different effect than what I have intended.? Satori sighed. ?Good luck.? And with that, she quietly turned and walked into the back of the shrine.

---

   The cave was spinning, so Parsee decided to lay down. The ground was wobbling back and forth.    Is this what they subjugated themselves to? On one hand, Parsee felt light, floaty, like she was flying even though she was firmly planted on the ground. On the other, she couldn?t keep her balance, nothing would stay still, and she kept thinking weird, disjointed thoughts.

   The drink was still radiating a warmth from within her, but it was a lonely warmth. For the first time in ages, Parsee began to wish that she wasn?t alone.

   It was then she heard the clunking of wood against stone, a steady sound in perfect time. She realized that she was lying in the middle of the path between worlds, and she struggled to her feet. The land lurched beneath her, and she stumbled forward, losing her balance and she slowly tumbled onto her elbows, and for some reason she found this whole thing amusing and started chuckling softly.

   ?Um. Are you okay?? Parsee recognized the voice from somewhere. It smelled like the sake from before.  ?Hey...? A hand grabbed her shoulder and rolled Parsee onto her back. ?Oh man, your face is really red.?

   Parsee nodded, and she begun to recognize the woman above her. The red horn, the great height, the long, silky hair. It reminded Parsee of something. She reached around until she felt the cold, smooth bottle and held it up to the woman.

   ??m out.?

   ?I see that.? Yuugi smiled. Apparently, this girl wasn?t an experienced drinker. She took the bottle from Parsee?s hand and set it off to the side. ?I can get you more later.? She smiled brightly.

   ?Good.? Parsee found herself staring at the oni?s smiling face. It was warm, the same kind of warm that still dwelled in Parsee?s stomach. Except the oni?s warm wasn?t lonely like Parsee?s warm. She didn?t like it. It wasn?t fair. Parsee hadn?t felt lonliness for so long, and now... ??s all you?re fault.?

   Yuugi cocked an eyebrow. ?What is??

   ?Everythin?.? Parsee rolled on her side away from Yuugi and furrowed her eyebrows. She felt awful and giddy all at once and couldn?t make heads or tails of anything. The cave spinning wasn?t helping, either.

   ?You gonna be okay??

   Parsee shrugged in response, still trying to sort out herself. Eventually, she heard Yuugi sigh. The oni kicked off her geta and settled against a large stalagmite. She reached over and hoisted Parsee?s head onto her lap, illiciting a small groan from the small youkai. ?You lie there, okay? Lemme know if you feel sick.? Yuugi smiled down into Parsee?s red and bleary eyes.

   All Parsee could do was nod. She suddenly felt very sleepy. The oni?s legs were firm, and had a softness to them Parsee was not accustomed to. They weren?t anything like the rocks Parsee normally rested her head on. They were warm, too. But not like the lonely warmth inside Parsee. She closed her eyes and listened to the oni breathe. Eventually, she began to dream.

---

   Parsee wasn?t stiff when she awoke, and that was her first indication that something was wrong. Her recollection of the previous night was foggy at best, dim memories of stumbling about the cave. All because of that bottle that the oni gave her.

   That?s right, the oni. What was her name...? Yuugi...? Suddenly, she recalled the end of the night, and grimly realized what the soft warm thing her head resting on was. Parsee sat up quickly, running through places to hide in her head. The cave was quite large, there had to be at least one?

   ?G?mornin?!?

   Damn it. Parsee turned slowly. Yuugi was waving with her ever-present grin. Parsee stared.

   ?You sleep okay??

   Parsee deliberated for a moment, still trying to piece together the details of the previous night and determine what this oni wanted. Eventually, she nodded.

   ?Good, good!? Yuugi gave a firm pat onto Parsee?s shoulder. ?I woulda given ya? something else if I knew you were such a lightweight.? A silence passed between the two. Parsee?s stomach rumbled. She wrapped her arms around her stomach and flushed slightly. Yuugi stood. ?I?ll get some food!?

   ?No.? Parsee?s voice was raspy and she cleared her throat. ?I?m fine.? She stood and walked behind a large boulder stuffed in the corner of the cave. There, the circle of rocks that was her bed, the bed of mushrooms that were her meals, and the sharpened stick she used to hunt what few creatures lived in the cave. She grabbed the stick and a handful of mushrooms.

   ?What?cha up to?? Yuugi had followed her, and was leaning with one shoulder against a wall. Always smiling.

   ?Aren?t you nosy.? Parsee sighed, shoving the mushrooms in her pocket. ?Move.?

   ?Eh??

   ?From the wall. Move.? Parsee demanded as she pulled off her shoes and socks. Yuugi stepped away from the wall and watched the girl curiously. Parsee clenched the stick in her teeth, and began scaling the wall. With practiced movements, she scaled the wall, her hands finding memorized handholds. It was a matter of moments before Yuugi lost sight of her in the darkness of the cave.

   Parsee took the stick from her mouth and waited. Watched for a sign and listened intently. She took aim and released the stick into the darkness. There was a wet sound as the stick collided with something, and fell to the ground. Yuugi looked to her feet to see that the small youkai had just impaled a bat.

   ?You?re still here?? Parsee asked as she grabbed her socks. Yuugi was surprised at how fast she had descended. ?Could you leave? I?m going to eat.?

   ?Uh, right.? Yuugi nodded and turned. As she reached the exit leading to to the Ancient City, something occurred to her. ?Hey, what?s your na?? Parsee paused seconds from biting off one of the wings. ?Shouldn?t ya... y?know, cook that??

   ?I don?t see anything flammable around here, do you??

   Yuugi looked around. Parsee was right, there wasn?t a single piece of tinder to be found. It was probably a miracle she even had a stick suitable to hunt with. ?Right... so, what?s your name?? Yuugi figured it was polite to ask, even if she already knew the answer.

   ?Parsee Mizuhashi.? With that Parsee turned away from the oni and focused on her meal.

   Yuugi shrugged and headed back to the City. Did that girl really survive off of bats and mushrooms? That wasn?t any way to live. Yuugi steadily formed a plan... but first, she should probably return and make sure her house in the City hadn?t collapsed or something.

---

   Parsee floated, staring at the drops of water falling from above. That oni was annoying. Such confidence. It wasn?t fair. Parsee sighed. It was about time for lunch, but for some reason, she didn?t want to hunt another bat...

   ?Heya, Parsee!?

   Parsee yelped and flapped about, splashing water everywhere. She righted herself in the water and saw Yuugi?s smiling, water-drenched face leaning over the pool. ?W-What are you doing here?!?

   Yuugi held out a covered basket. ?Bats suck, so I thought I?d bring ya lunch.?

   ?What?!? Parsee drew back.

   Yuugi stood straight and turned, reaching both arms behind her head and dangling the basket behind her. ?If ya?d rather have raw bat, that?s okay. I can eat all of this on my own.?

   ?Wait!? Parsee?s own voice surprised her, but Yuugi turned back smiling as if she expected that reaction. Parsee felt a bit flustered, and wasn?t sure what to say. ?I guess,? she started after a long moment?s silence, ?I?m sick of bat.?

   With that, Yuugi whirled the blanket from the top of the basket and laid it flat in a single motion. Parsee withdrew herself from the pool and began wringing water out of the hem of her dress.  ?Don?t worry about gettin? it wet.? Yuugi said as she pulled a bottle and two sake dishes from the basket. ??S not mine.?

   Parsee hesitated for a moment, but took a spot at one end of the blanket. She made a valiant effort to not feel self-conscious about the growing wet spot underneath her. An appetizing scent rose from the basket, and curiously Parsee peered into it. There was a large metal pot full of steaming meat, and a smaller one full of rice. Yuugi reached for the larger pot.

   ?Shouldn?t you???

   ?This heat isn?t a problem for the skin of an oni!? Yuugi deftly lifted the pots one after the other without so much as a wince. Were all onis so endurant? What a blessing, to be born to such a naturally strong race. Parsee balled the hem of her dress in her hands and grit her teeth.

   Yuugi planted a bowl in front of Parsee. Beef on top of rice with bits of onion sprinkled about.  Parsee couldn?t remember the last time she had real food, and tried her best to hide her anticipation. She forced herself to pick around the food, pushing it around and examining it before finally taking a piece of meat and sampling it. Sweet, succulent, and most importantly, it didn?t taste like blood.

   ?D?ya like it?? Yuugi asked, a piece of rice sticking to her cheek. Parsee nodded silently.

   ---

   Weeks passed, and Yuugi came by at least once every day. Parsee learned many things. The difference between Yuugi?s sober voice, and Yuugi?s drunken voice. That Yuugi?s hands are exceptionally rough. Oni culture. The flavor of many types of sake. The names of many, many people from above ground. That it took three days for a bruise on Yuugi?s cheek to heal. Parsee found herself dreaming of the oni, and longing for her presence when she was absent.

   Parsee hated that. She hated that she let this happen. She hated the emptiness she felt when she was alone, the emptiness she had buried time and time again. It wasn?t fair. She knew what was going to happen, and it wasn?t fair.

   ?Y?okay?? Yuugi spoke up after a long silence. ?Yer kinda spacin? out.?

   Parsee slid her knees up to her chin and hugged them tightly. She buried her face in her arms, and in a voice hardly louder than a whisper, she spoke: ?I can?t stand you.? She wasn?t entirely sure if Yuugi had even heard her, or why she had suddenly decided to say that in that moment.

   ?What...?? It wasn?t a voice she heard Yuugi use before, and it made her afraid to look up. So she buried her face deeper into herself and the words kept spilling out.

   ?Who the hell do you think you are, to barge into my life?? She hissed, words full of venom. ?I was perfectly fine without you here. I was perfectly fine, but now...? She shrunk, holding her legs closer and trembling. ?But now...!?

   ?Parsee, I??

   ?Shut up!? Parsee slammed her fists into the dirt beside her and yelled into the ground. ?You think you?re the first person who?s done this? The first person who?s gone ?oh, what a poor lonely weak little girl, I?ll be her friend??!?

   ?What are you...?!?

   ?It all ends the same! ?I?m getting married, Parsee!?, ?I have to move, Parsee!?, ?Demons spirited away my little sister, Parsee!?, ?The priest says I shouldn?t speak to youkai, Parsee!?, ?I have to live my own life, Parsee!?, ?Goodbye, Parsee!??

   Yuugi attempted to speak, but the only sound she could summon was a confused choking sound.

   ?I don?t want to hear it anymore! I don?t want to hear about your lives that I can?t be a part of! I don?t want to hear about your cities I will never see! I don?t want to hear about the friends I?ll never have! And?? Her throat clenched and she shut her eyes hard. In a low volume, she said, ?and I don?t want your damn pity.?

   ?I??

   There was an echoing crack. Parsee wasn?t sure why she struck out. She knew she couldn?t hurt Yuugi. She was shaking, and she didn?t know if it was out of anger or fear. Yuugi slowly rubbed her cheek, and the expression that she wore wasn?t something Parsee expected to see, or wanted to see. Yuugi?s watery eyes made her feel a deep emptiness and regret.

   Yuugi nodded slowly, and?without even so much as a glance at Parsee?she stood and walked down the path to the above world, pausing only once at the mouth of the cave.

   Parsee curled into a ball. She felt empty, and she hated it.

---

   ?Damn it!? Yuugi struck the tree again, the indent in the trunk becoming that much larger, her knuckles bleeding that much more. ?Damn it!? She punched again. She couldn?t stop. When she stopped, her chest hurt and her eyes began to water and she felt weak. Onis don?t cry. Onis don?t get sad. Onis don?t become fragile. So she kept punching the tree.

   ?It?s okay to feel sad.? The small voice that came from behind her could only be Satori?s. ?I tried to warn you.?

   ?I don?t get it.? Yuugi punched the tree again, and her arm fell limp. ?Why would she...??

   ?In her heart, she is only protecting herself.?

   Yuugi didn?t say anything. She slumped forward and her horn hit the tree.

   ?She... believes that the pain she is feeling now is preferable to what it would have been in the future.?

   ?Is that so...??

   ?I cannot see than that, but yes.?

   Yuugi fell to her knees. She couldn?t understand Parsee?s pain. She didn?t even notice. She felt frustrated and angry, but for some reason she wasn?t angry at Parsee. No. She was angry at her situation. It wasn?t fair that Parsee was chained to that place. It wasn?t fair that Parsee was alone. It wasn?t fair that people would abandon her. It wasn?t fair she had to survive off of raw bat and mushrooms. And as Yuugi comprehended these things, it frustrated her even more that she hadn?t realized them sooner. Hopelessness and lonliness began to fill her heart. Tears trickled from her eyes.

   ?You?re not alone.? Satori said.

   Something began to pour on Yuugi?s head. Something with a sweet aroma that burned her eyes and mouth. ?What kinda oni starts cryin? over a thing like this?? Suika hopped down from a nearby tree. ?We onis don?t cry. We get back up and start punchin? from a different angle, right??

   A different angle. That?s right. Yuugi rubbed the tears and alcohol from her eyes and thought. She had to think of something. It wasn?t fair for her to sit here and pity herself while Parsee was alone in a cold, damp cave by herself. An idea came to her. She struck the tree again, blasting through the trunk and the tree crashed to the ground.

   ?Suika, could you get me some carpentry tools from the Shrine?s shed??

   ?Could you at least ask the owner of the tools?? Reimu asked as she floated down to the earth. Yuugi vaguely wondered why people kept arriving out of nowhere in such a manner.

   ?Well ya don?t mind, do ya?? Yuugi grinned.

   Reimu shrugged. ?Whatever. I?m not going to be using them any time soon.?

   ?Awesome. Now all I need is to get a favor from Yukari??

   ?Hellooooo~? Yukari fell upside-down of a gap.

   ?...do y?all practice this sort of convient appearin? thing??

   ?It?s a gift.? Yukari giggled. ?And I?ve always wanted one of the Four Devas to owe me a favor.?

   ?I guess I?ll owe ya?.? Yuugi scratched the back of her head. ?Anyway, here?s what I?m thinkin?.?

---

   How long had it been? For the first few days, Parsee couldn?t stomach bat. The taste of blood and raw meat made her sick. She was, slowly, getting used to it again. But she still felt empty. She compared herself to the pool of water she floated in. Cold. Empty. Alone. She sighed.

   There was a large rumbling. A crack and crumbling and tiny rocks rained from above. The cracking grew louder and louder, and Parsee realized in shock what was happening. She barely made it out of the pool in time before the large stalactite above it came crashing from above, plugging it entirely. Parsee hated that pool. She hated that stalactite. She hated this cave. But she was still really pissed off, she didn?t know why, and that pissed her off even more. She stomped and turned, determined to find something to blame.

   There was a building in the cave. No, wait. There was a house in her cave. A two story house, complete with roofing, windows, doors, a chimney, even a little shed on the side filled with chopped wood.

   Parsee blinked. Maybe she was hallucinating? She rubbed her head looking for a spot where a rock must have struck her.

   The front door opened and a tall, one horned oni wobbled out. ?Rough trip.? She muttered to herself.

   ?Y-Yuugi?!?

   ?Oh, heya Parsee. Sorry for the noise.?

   ?Wha... wha... whaaa...?!?

   ?Oh, y?see, the oni back in the City blew up my house in some party. Decided to move somewhere quieter.? Yuugi nodded to herself, flashing her normal grin. ?Don?t gotta protect my stuff here.?

   Parsee opened her mouth. And closed it again. She repeated this several times before a call of ?Yuugi~? from down the cave caused her to turn her head and find a crowd marching into the area. Lead by the short oni, there was a red-white girl with black hair... a black-white with blonde hair... a taller blonde woman behind that one, a kitsune and a nekomata and she began to place names to these people as she realized these were the people Yuugi would tell her about from above ground.

   ?Wha?who..?!?

   ?These?re friends.?

   ?Friends...??

   ?Yup. Housewarmin? party. Gonna be lotsa sake.?

   Parsee blinked. All those people. The house. Yuugi. She was dreaming. The stalactite hit her and now she was drowning and this was her fantasy before she died.

   ?Hey.? Yuugi clapped on Parsee?s shoulder and stared her down with a suddenly serious face. ?I dunno what happened to ya? in the past, but... I?m here for ya, even if you don?t want me to be. And all those people? They helped me get here.?

   Parsee looked back and forth between Yuugi and the group that was almost at the house now. Her heart began racing. Her head was spinning. She was beginning to feel something and she didn?t know what it was. Her face felt wet.

   ?Yuugi...? Parsee choked back a sob. ?I...? She sniffed. ?You?re such a dumb jerk!?

   ?Hey, that?s mean.? Yuugi smiled.

   Parsee rushed forward and grabbed Yuugi around the middle. ?If you leave, I?ll hate you forever.?

   Yuugi patted the top of the small youkai?s head. ?Don?cha worry about a thing.?

   Parsee nodded, and that was that.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2011, 07:59:41 AM by Ryuu »

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2010, 01:32:31 AM »
Wow.

I...really have no words to say about this. That was exquisitely done. I couldn't find any flaws.

And congratulations, this was the first piece of Touhou fanfiction that nearly made me cry.
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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2010, 01:44:12 AM »
Yeah, that nearly made me cry, too >_<

Gimme 5, that was awesome.

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2010, 02:04:42 AM »
That was beautiful. I've mostly seen Parsee characterized as just some jealous girl, but this story makes her feelings so much more pronounced and astonishingly real. 

Excuse me, I- I think there's something in my eye.

Ryuu

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2010, 02:20:56 AM »
U-Um, thank you all very much! It's been a really long time since I wrote something so I put in a lot of effort to make it special. :V

http://ryuukyunplaysstuff.tumblr.com/ read about me playing league i guess

Esifex

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2010, 03:14:29 AM »
And, all in one post. That was exquisite.

Since the other librarians are all currently on hiatus and the summary page is locked in limbo as well, it's fallen to me to do most of the summaries. I'm rather glad I wandered into this one - it was very enjoyable, and it reads like legitimate, canon backstory.

Neonie

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2010, 03:25:22 AM »
That was...amazing.  I was wondering what all the comments in here were talking about but wow that really was some good emotion tugging right there. I have no idea how you did that.

Ryuu

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2010, 06:52:39 PM »
lul hey remember this? enjoy part one of your two part sequel






Everyone has baggage. Things about themselves they desire to change, but can?t. Things they hate about themselves. Things they hide from others, maybe even themselves. For humans, developing themselves past this is often a matter of willpower, strength, and friends. For youkai, the situation is often slightly more complicated.

?Look at how strong she is...? Parsee whispered into Parsee?s ear, as the two watched Yuugi haul in another load of fallen trees from above ground. ?Don?t you wish you were that strong??

It was true. Parsee wasn?t strong, physically or magically. She bit the tip of her thumb, and thunked her head against the second story window.

?And so talented!? The other Parsee spun behind her, with her arms extended wide. ?This whoooole house, all on her own! You could never do that.?

Parsee clenched her teeth on her thumb. She had to be careful not to draw blood?Yuugi would ask questions... but this was so frustrating. She tapped her forehead against the window again.

For the first few weeks, living with Yuugi was a wonderful experience. Parsee had begun to learn new things, she made new friends?a word she never thought she would get the opportunity to use plurally?and the void in her chest was beginning to slowly fill. But she couldn?t deny herself, nor could she deny what made her, her. And that?s when her mirror appeared, like it had in the past.

Perhaps ?mirror? wasn?t the best term to use. It was just a bit taller than Parsee. It?s eyes were a bit brighter than Parsee?s. Her body was a bit more filled out than Parsee?s. Her skin was a bit less flawed than Parsee?s. Parsee hated looking at the mirror, because all she could see was what she was not. What she couldn?t be.

?Yooo!? Yuugi?s voice finally came from downstairs. ?Parsee! I?m home!?

The mirror pouted as Parsee strode past her and out the door with her face noticeably brightening. Ever since the mirror appeared, Yuugi became even more of a beacon to Parsee. For some reason, the mirror would never show itself while she was around. Parsee didn?t understand why, but she was relieved to have some respite from herself.

?Welcome back!? Parsee greeted as she reached the landing on the first floor. Yuugi ruffled Parsee?s hair, and Parsee tried to hide a soft smile. It was like their special greeting, something Yuugi would do every time she came home?and something she never did to anyone else, Parsee noticed. That simple ruffle would always instantly lift the weight on Parsee?s heart that the mirror created.

?I got some stuff for us.? Yuugi unshouldered her basket and lifted the lid. ?Tea, rice, bread, some meat...? Yuugi trailed off for a second and cleared her throat slightly. ?Say, uh... could ya make that beef bowl o?yours again tonight??

?You sure like beef bowl.? Parsee gave a sly smile as she took the basket from Yuugi and headed into the kitchen.

?Can?t help it.? Yuugi flashed her normal bright smile. ?I?m an oni, after all.?

?Yes, yes,? Parsee said as she pulled items out of the basket and placed them in the pantry. ?Of course.?

?But, man,? Yuugi pulled up a seat at the kitchen table and sat into it, leaning back and stretching out her long legs. ?Sure is awkward buyin? food in the Human Village. Get the feelin? they still don?t like onis too much.?

Parsee gave a long hum in response. She didn?t know much about the relationship between the oni and humans, but she remembered when the oni moved underground. She listened to them as she hid in the shadows, and what she could pick up made it seem like the two groups were enemies of each other.
"Still clever as hell, though," Yuugi mused, flipping a package between her fingers. "Usin' magic amulets to wrap meat. Keeps the meat fresh and stops it from gettin' on the rest of yer food! Brilliant."

Parsee felt something stir in Yuugi's heart. She turned from the pantry to see Yuugi admiring the packaging with a complicated look on her face. Her smile was as endearing as ever, but her brow was furrowed and her eyes hardened. Parsee didn't like feeling that emotion coming from Yuugi. "Well," Parsee leaned over and grabbed the package from Yuugi, trying to stomp out the flame in her heart, "the humans aren't strong at all. They have to be smart or else they'd all be dead."

Yuugi grinned. "Guess you're right! So when's dinner? I'm starvin' after gettin' all that firewood."

"It'll be done when it's done." Parsee said as she filled a pot with water. "Just be patient."

"Patience isn't an oni's virtue!"

"That's certainly true." Parsee commented, throwing fresh wood in the stove.

"Hey!" Yuugi crossed her arms. "Sounds mean when you say it."

Parsee gave an open giggle. Yuugi, too, began to laugh warmly. The two made small talk as Parsee began to cook--something she learned she had actual talent in. These were her favorite moments, friendly chatter and doing something that she was good at. Her. Not someone else.

Watching Yuugi eat with the fervor that no other youkai could match filled Parsee with an odd warmth. It was like her heart had just began pumping blood throughout her body, like it had been still her entire life. A feeling of accomplishment flooded her with each meal. Even if a good portion of those meals ended up stuck to Yuugi?s face.

?Jeez. Didn?t you learn any manners growing up?? Parsee grabbed a piece of beef with her chopsticks.

?Mfmrphrmrhh.?

?Don?t speak with your mouth full!? Parsee pointed at Yuugi with the instruments in her hand.

Yuugi?s response was eating the beef hanging in between the sticks, and a large smile. While it didn?t fill Yuugi with the same kind of warmth, she was just as appreciative of Parsee?s cooking. It was good that the girl finally found something that she could excel at, and Yuugi believed that was just the thing Parsee needed to come out of her shell.

Sake helped too, Yuugi noted as she carried a Parsee who had a bit too much to drink up the stairs. Yuugi wasn?t sure she would have liked this life, at first... this complacent, quiet life living with but one other person. Parsee seemed happier too, even if the girl had trouble showing it?honestly, Yuugi found her tough outward apperance quite cute.

Though, it was a mask that quickly disappeared once Parsee got a quater way through the bottle. Once drunk, the girl became outgoing and honest, quite opposite to how she was normally. Though, at first, this made Yuugi worry. The first few nights they lived together, Yuugi had carried Parsee to bed and the girl wouldn?t let go of her. When Yuugi asked why, the smaller youkai would just remain quiet, wearing a complicated face.

As time passed, Parsee began to tell Yuugi details of her past. The names and descriptions of everyone who had been in her life. Even drunk, she was able to recall them all in vivid detail, to the point where even Yuugi could clearly imagine what they looked like. Parsee then told her that out of everyone she had known, Yuugi had been there the longest.

This struck a chord in Yuugi?s heart. Had this girl really been so alone that she was able to remember such detail even though she only knew them for a few months at best? Had she been suffering here all this time while Yuugi partied underground? Yuugi?s throat tightened, a powerful guilt strangulating her.

?Hey.? Parsee spoke up suddenly, shifting her head against Yuugi?s shoulder. She lifted Yuugi?s arm up and tapped the shackle on her wrist. ?Why d?you wear these??

?That?s...? Yuugi looked away.

?Mm. ?S okay.? Parsee let Yuugi?s arm go, and rolled on her side, draping her own arm across Yuugi?s stomach. ?Don?t have to tell me if you don?t want.?

?No, I...? Yuugi swallowed. Parsee had already told Yuugi her past... so wasn?t it only fair? It wasn?t a story Yuugi liked remembering, let alone telling, but... ?A long time ago, before the oni decided to live underground...? Yuugi paused. ?We liked to challenge humans . Strength, eating, drinking, racing. A few of them beat us the right way, we liked them.? A faint smile crossed her face for a moment before disappearing as quickly as it came. ?But most of them tricked us. Used unfair methods to gain victory. Called us monsters.?

?Mmm.? Parsee nodded against Yuugi?s chest.

?A lot of the humans hated us. And one day, an exorcist from a nearby village came and challenged us to a eating contest. Naturally, we all accepted.? Yuugi paused again, clutching at a piece of the bed with her free hand. ?We all got into place and we began to eat. Pies. Didn?t think to ask what was in them.?

?So what was innem??

?Fried beans. Oni can?t eat the stuff. Makes us weak. So we were all there, choking and coughing, and the humans start beating us with sticks until we passed out. When we woke up, we were all chained to posts at their shrine. The exorcist was killing us, one by one, saying something about sacrifices. I remember feeling angrier than I?ve ever felt, breaking the chains that bound me and beating with my bare hands until he was unrecognizable.?

?Yuugi...?

?The rest of the oni broke free, and we stormed the village. I... don?t remember much of that. The next thing I remember is watching the entire place burn. I kept the shackles to remind me to never trust a human who couldn?t beat us fairly. A lot of other oni did the same.?

Parsee tightened her hold on Yuugi. The rest of the night passed in silence. When Parsee awoke the next morning, Yuugi was already heading out the bedroom door. ?Gonna chop today?s firewood,? she spoke shortly and gave a slight wave before leaving the room, down the stairs and out the front door.

?How dedicated,? the mirror spoke from the foot of the bed, not wasting a moment in appearing. ?Or is that perhaps... avoidance?? Parsee rolled onto her back and covered her eyes with her forearm. The mirror sneered and continued, ?isn?t it nice how she can appreciate being alone? You can?t do that.? It began crawling down the bed and wrapped its arms around Parsee, whispering into her ear. ?You don?t need to worry though. I?ll always be here with you.?

Parsee ground her teeth together, her stomach already churning. She wished that Yuugi hadn?t left.

The mirror giggled. ?Yuugi? She has the respect of aallll those oni down there.? It tightened its embrace around Parsee. ?She?ll never care about you like that.?

Parsee?s body moved on it?s own. In a moment, she was pinning down the mirror, her hands clasping tightly around its throat. Her teeth were clenched and her body shook with shuddering breaths as she closed her hands tighter and tighter. The mirror snickered and laughed, unimpeded by Parsee?s hands.

Light flooded the room. Parsee clenched her eyes shut and she felt the body beneath her disappear. When she opened her eyes again, she was alone. For a moment, she wondered what the light was but decided to just be thankful that the mirror was gone. Parsee flattened her hair and went downstairs to make breakfast.

The mirror was already waiting for her in the kitchen, sitting calmly at the table tracing a pattern in the wood with its finger. Parsee held back a frustrated sigh and went to busying herself with the preparation of her meal. ?Oni craftsmanship is really something, huh?? The mirror said. ?You don?t have any talents??

Parsee slammed down the rice pot on the stove, cutting the mirror off. She didn?t want to dignify it with a response, but she knew it was wrong. She had this. She could cook for Yuugi. The mirror looked her over with a sneer, ?I?m sure there?s someone who can cook better than you. Like that maid.? Parsee?s grip on the handle of the pan tightened. ?She?s from some exotic place, right? She can probably make all sorts of food. You can only make a few things. How does that make you feel??

Parsee clenched her eyes shut.

?You can say it.? The mirror giggled. ?I already know. Just say it.?

Parsee gave a large, shuddering breath. ?I won?t say it.?

The mirror laughed more openly, a wicked grin coming across its face. ?Why? What point is there in denying who you are??

?I?m not that person anymore.?

The mirror slid it?s arms underneath Parsee?s, hugging her around the middle. ?Yes, you are.? Parsee didn?t respond this time, instead turning all of her focus on the food in front of her. She bustled around the kitchen, but the mirror never let go of her middle. It kept its grip, shuffling side to side whenever Parsee needed to move.
As she finished preparing the meal, the front door swung open and the mirror vanished. Even though it felt as if a great weight was lifted from her shoulders, Parsee?s knees were still weak and shaking. Yuugi entered holding a stack of chopped wood under one arm, and a folded up newspaper in the other hand. ?Yo! Breakfast done??

Parsee nodded. ?What?s the paper??

?Aya delivered it.? Yuugi explained as she set down the logs next to the stove. ?Said it was thanks for the sake at the last party we had here.?

?I see.? Parsee grabbed the dishes from the counter and set them at the table. She begun to spoon herself some rice when she noticed Yuugi throwing the paper into the stove?s furnace and watching it burn. ?Aren?t you going to eat??

?Ah.? Yuugi jolted slightly, looking up from the fire with a bashful face and rubbing the back of her neck. ?Of course.?

The two ate in silence. This alone was enough to make Parsee feel uncomfortable, but even more disturbing was that Yuugi was eating at a pace that could be considered normal. When she finished her meal before the oni, she decided to speak up. ?Is something wrong??

Yuugi stopped poking at her egg with her chopsticks and looked up, slightly surprised. Her brow drew together and her face barely concealed a scowl. ?It?s nothing.?

Parsee flatly stared across the table. Yuugi tugged at the collar of her shirt.

?No, really.? She said. ?There?s just this oni who?s been going above ground...?

?An oni?? Parsee asked, folding her arms. ?But there?s nothing above ground except humans.?

?Yeah... he apparently fell for a girl up there. Her name?s Miyo, accordin? to the article.?

Parsee leaned forward slightly rested her arms on the table.

?The guy... Takahashi. I know him. He?s always been a bit weird.?

?I always thought all oni were weird.?

Yuugi let out a small chuckle. ?Weird by oni standards. Didn?t ever party very hard, y?know?? The oni clapped her hands together. ?And that reminds me! Feel like havin? a party tonight? Aya mentionin? sake made me wanna get everyone together.?

?I don?t mind.? Parsee said almost too quickly. The mirror had been wearing her patience down to the breaking point, and a night with a party is a night(and a better part of the next day) without the mirror...

?Hehe, great! I?ll go give Suika the message, then.?

...well, of course, such a relief would have to come at a price. Yuugi almost immediately stood and excused herself, exiting the house and trotting towards the path to the above ground. Parsee sighed and collected the dishes, the mirror already sitting in Yuugi?s seat. ?Gee, that was fast.? It said with its arms behind its head, resting its feet on the table in a crude mockery of Yuugi?s normal relaxation pose. ?She must be preeeetty sick of you, leaving to go hang out with Suika so quickly.?

Parsee ignored the mirror and ran the plates under hot water, trying to focus on how the heat burned her hands.

?And a party! Man, she probably just wants to drown you out with as much noise and booze as she can.?

Through the painful tightening of her heart, Parsee allowed herself to feel a weak sort of confidence. ?You only say that because you can?t appear when anyone else is around.?

The mirror smirked and responded in a flat, cold voice that pierced the very core of Parsee?s being. ?Oh, I can.? Slowly, Parsee turned to face the mirror who regarded her with a vicious smile and a dark glare. ?I just don?t, because you don?t want me to.?

The plate slipped out of Parsee?s fingers, and she didn?t notice the sound of it hitting the bottom of the sink, nor the water that had reached scalding.

?Why do you look so surprised?? The mirror snickered to itself. ?Didn?t you realize? I?m only here because you want me to be here.?

Parsee opened her mouth to respond, but no words came to mind.

?You might want to take your hands out of the water.?

Parsee jumped and quickly withdrew her hands from the sink. Her hands tingled and her skin had turned a bright red color.

?You see?? The mirror smiled. ?I?m only here to help you.? Without another word, it vanished. Parsee stood, mouth agape, the words of the mirror running through her mind over and over again. She busied herself with preparing the den for a party, but she couldn?t keep the words out of her thoughts. When Yuugi returned with Suika(and a few crates of alcohol), Parsee was quiet. As people gathered and the room expanded to fit them all, Parsee was in the center of attention with Yuugi, yet she remained oddly withdrawn.

Yuugi began to worry when she noticed that Parsee had been nursing the same dish of sake the entire night. However, before she could bring it up, a drunken Aya was slinging her arm around Yuugi?s shoulder. ?Yuugi, Yuugi! C?mere, c?mere, I gotta show you this!?

Yuugi gave Parsee a sidelong glance before turning her head to the crow tengu. ?Aya, I?.?

?No, really.? Aya said staring at Yuugi with very sober eyes. ?I have somethin? to show ya.? She smiled and grabbed Yuugi?s hand and lead her out of the den into the much quieter kitchen.

Yuugi sighed and rubbed the back of her neck. ?What is it??

Aya withdrew a single photo from the pocket of her blouse and held it out to Yuugi. Within the photo, Yuugi could clearly see what appeared to be two Parsees. One was choking the other. The one being choked had a face of laughter, and the one on top had a face full of pain and hate. Yuugi looked up from the photo, bewildered.

?I took that this morning.? Aya folded her arms and leaned against a counter. ?I?ve heard of this happening before. It happens to certain types of youkai when they deny what makes them who they are.?

?The hell does that mean??

Aya shrugged. ?That?s all I know. Listen, I only told you this because I don?t think that girl can handle it on her own.?

Yuugi looked at the photo again. ?So what should I...??

?Talk to her.? Aya clapped a hand on Yuugi?s shoulder. ?You two are close, right? She?ll open up to you.? The tengu gave a wink and stepped to the kitchen doorway. ?Oh. That piece I did on your house today came out really well.?

?Good to know.? Yuugi muttered.

Aya furrowed her brow and returned to the party.

Yuugi stared at the photo for a few more moments before clicking her tongue and tucking it into the waist of her skirt. She returned to the party herself, to find that Parsee had already excused herself to bed. Yuugi?s face drew into a frown.

?Yuuuuugiiiii!? Suika threw her arms around Yuugi?s middle. ?Don?t look so glum! Drink up!?

Suika was holding a sake dish up to Yuugi?s face, which Yuugi took without thinking. Yuugi looked from the sake in the dish to the party, and she caught the concerned eyes of Satori staring at her from the corner of the room. Yuugi nodded to the girl slightly, downed the dish in one go, and excused herself as well.

Upstairs, Yuugi found that Parsee had already curled up in bed facing away from the door. She could tell that Parsee was still awake, though she wasn?t sure how. Maybe it was how stiff her body looked, or the unevenness of her breaths. Yuugi sat at the edge of the bed and paused for a moment, deliberating on how to act. Should she bring up the photo? Suddenly the item burned at her waist like a bad itch.

Parsee was silent, and Yuugi found it difficult to word what she wanted to ask. She decided to wait until there was less sake in her system, and she lied next to Parsee, throwing one of her arms over the smaller girl. Parsee turned and pressed her forehead against Yuugi?s navel. Yuugi smiled slightly and rubbed the girl?s back. It was another silent night for the two.

The next morning, Yuugi awoke to find herself alone. This was something that alerted her immediately, as Parsee was usually a late sleeper. She quickly got out of bed?the photograph still itching against her side?and headed downstairs. The sound of running water in the kitchen calmed her a bit.

As she reached the bottom of the stairs, she could see clearly into the den. Reimu, Aya, and Suika were the only three still remaining from the previous night, all passed out at a table in the middle of the room. She closed the den door and proceeded into the kitchen. Inside, she saw Parsee filling a pot with water.
?Morning.? The girl greeted flatly.

Yuugi sighed, scratching at the picture tucked against her waist, as if the itch was an ever-present reminder. She decided to just get it over with. ?Parsee, I...? She pulled the picture from her waist and looked it over once again before extending it to Parsee. ?Here.?

Parsee blinked, looking Yuugi over cautiously before taking the picture from her. It was barely a moment after looking at it before Parsee paled and dropped the photo, backing away from Yuugi into the counter.

?It?s okay.? Yuugi assured. She stepped forward and tightly hugged the girl. Parsee, for a fleeting moment, wished that she could just explain everything to Yuugi, that Yuugi could somehow make all of her pain disappear forever.

?If I were strong like Yuugi,? came a familiar voice in a mocking tone, ?I wouldn?t be such a useless burden!? Yuugi let go of Parsee, turning to the table behind them. ?Right?? The mirror grinned at them sadistically.

?You...!? Yuugi balled her hands into fists and grit her teeth.

?Yuugi?s so fearsome!? The mirror continued. ?Yuugi?s so brave! She?s so strong and so beautiful! I wish I was like Yuugi!?

?Shut up!? Yuugi took a step forward.

?See? She hates this side of you as much as you do!? The mirror laughed.

?You?re not part of me...?  Parsee whispered, looking to the ground.

?Oh?? The mirror tilted its head. ?Do you mean to say that you haven?t thought of everything I said... before I said it??

Parsee clenched her teeth together.

?I told you to shut up!? Yuugi advanced towards the smiling mirror with eyes full of anger.

The sound of breaking glass suddenly flooded the room, torches and bottles crashed through the house. The sounds of humans yelling filled the cavern. Yuugi turned towards the kitchen window, fire already spreading from the shards of a broken bottle. She immediately turned and grabbed Parsee?s hand?taking no notice that the mirror had already vanished. Yuugi hoisted Parsee into her arms and charged out of the house.

Outside, there was a mob of humans throwing torches and fire bottles at their house, screaming curses and demands.

?Stupid worthless oni!?

?Give me back my Miyo!?

?Return her to us!?

?Go back to Hell!?

Yuugi set Parsee down and turned to enter the house. A large rock struck her in the back of the head.

?Tell us where Miyo is!?

?Take the little one! We can make her talk!?

Little one? Yuugi realized they must have meant Parsee. The mob had already begun advancing as Yuugi looked between Parsee and the flames slowly engulfing the house. She had to go get the others, but she couldn?t get to them before the mob got Parsee...

A large Suika burst through the wall followed immediately by a flying Reimu and Aya. ?Yuugi, what hap?? Suika didn?t get to finish her sentence before she noticed the human mob. Her face darkened into something Yuugi hadn?t seen for centuries?something she was hoping to never see again. Suika swelled, becoming a giant. In a booming voice, she yelled ?you better run!? before stomping off towards the human mob.

The group, upon seeing the huge oni, immediately took to a retreat back to the above ground, screaming as Suika kept a close chase. Reimu stole a glance at at the burning building. ?Dammit.? She took flight and bolted after Suika.

Parsee was dumbfounded. Things were happening so fast that she found it hard to believe she wasn?t dreaming, though the heat of the flames reminded her that this was indeed real. Her house was burning down.

?Water!? Yuugi gasped. ?Where was that water hole??

Parsee blinked and looked up at Yuugi.

Yuugi grabbed Parsee by the shoulders. ?The one we met in! The one you were always hanging out in before!?

Parsee pointed weakly at an obtrusion in the cave?s floor, a stalactite that had fallen from the ceiling. Yuugi grabbed a bucket from near the chopping block and rushed over to the rock. She dug her hands into the sides and with a firm pull, she uprooted the entire obstruction, uncovering the water hole. She swung the bucket into pool and rushed back to the house, throwing the water on the building. She repeated this lap again and again in a ridiculous speed.

?This is my fault.? Aya whispered, entranced by the flames. ?Because I wrote that article, they knew...?

?Aya!? Yuugi yelled as she ran past.

?They knew that the human was with an oni... they knew where you lived...?

?Aya!?

?Because I wrote those articles... this is all my fault.?

?Aya, snap out of it!? Yuugi smacked the crow tengu across the face. ?I need your help!?

?Help?? Aya blinked. ?I-I. What... Oh!? She grabbed her maple leaf-shaped fan from her waist and gave it a big swing. Wind howled through the caverns, fanning the flames of the fire, intensifying them even more. ?H-Huh??

Yuugi swore. ?Aya, go above ground and find help!? Aya stared for a moment before nodding and taking flight. Yuugi looked at the burning building again. ?Damn... I can?t put this out alone.? She turned and put a hand on Parsee?s head, rubbing her hair. ?I?m gonna go get the oni to help!? Yuugi looked at the building yet another time. ?Those humans are gonna pay.? Yuugi sprinted down the other passageway, towards the Underground City.

Parsee watched the house burn. She felt each memory of Yuugi?s smiling face, each simple moment spent cooking or chatting, each party, each drink of sake, each friend she had finally made burn away in front of her. The house gave a loud groan over the roar of the fire, and the roof caved in upon itself.
   
?You see?? Her mirror whispered in her ear. ?You?re not meant for happiness.?

Parsee silently watched the fire. Hours passed, and all that remained of the house was a charred frame and fragments of wood. Yuugi still hadn?t returned. She was alone. In a daze, she wandered onto the ruins of the house and fell to her knees. She barely even noticed the still hot remnants burning her legs.

In front of her, clearly visible among the rubble, was a single, half-burned plank. It might have been part of the floor, or maybe a wall... or perhaps a portion of the ceiling, but somehow, this one piece of wood survived the fire. She grabbed it and hugged it tightly to her chest.

?Yuugi is off with the oni. Of course she?d leave you in a time like this.? The mirror was squatting in front of Parsee, hugging her knees and smiling distantly. ?And the humans are off rallying again, I bet.?

Parsee?s breath caught in her throat. Her eyes burned and her chest was so tight it was hard to breathe.

?They?re gonna kill each other. Right here. There?s gonna be a war.? The mirror tilted her head to the side and rested it on her arm. ?But that doesn?t really matter to you, does it? The fighting will go on, and no one will even notice you?re here. They hate each other sooooo much, but none of them are gonna notice you. All they see is each other.?

Parsee?s stomach began churning and her head began to spin. She couldn?t stop the tears from flowing. Choked sobs wracked her body.

?How does that make you feel??

Parsee opened her mouth. The feeling she hated, the part of herself that she tried to throw away... the word slithered out of her mouth like a black, bile-soaked snake. ?Jealous.?

http://ryuukyunplaysstuff.tumblr.com/ read about me playing league i guess

Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2010, 07:39:27 PM »
You know, even though I've been playing Persona 4 recently, it didn't occur to me to think "Shadow-Parsee" until almost halfway through.

But since it's ended up as a big huge drama-bomb I'm never gonna click this thread again.

RainfallYoshi

  • Yoshi of Skies & Rains
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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2010, 07:51:32 PM »
Oh god. Parsee gonna rape some shit.

This is amazing, I've always loved the Parsee/Yuugi pair (though in a more sisterly way in my mind) so this is awesome win.

FinnKaenbyou

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2010, 08:22:13 PM »
Ryuu, this fic strikes a key note with me. It's so good I can't help but act out the main character's jealousy as I read. :V

Iced Fairy

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2010, 08:25:17 PM »
Very nice.  Parsee's nature as a youkai at the start was a good starting point.  Also props for making the human incident actually believable instead of just random.  Waiting for the resolution.

Tengukami

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2010, 08:25:51 PM »
I've always loved the Parsee/Yuugi pair (though in a more sisterly way in my mind) so this is awesome win.

I've always been pretty *shrug" about Parsee/Yuugi, but this story added dimensions that made me care about it. Thanks, Ryuu. Well done stuff here.

"Human history and growth are both linked closely to strife. Without conflict, humanity would have no impetus for growth. When humans are satisfied with their present condition, they may as well give up on life."

Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #13 on: October 18, 2010, 08:43:36 PM »
I've always been pretty *shrug" about Parsee/Yuugi, but this story added dimensions that made me care about it. Thanks, Ryuu. Well done stuff here.

This.

This was fantastically done, Ryuu. I'm really looking forward to the next part.
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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #14 on: October 18, 2010, 10:50:31 PM »
this is a great continuation from the original. I like your Parsee much better than the usual "I'm so jealous-jealous-jealous" of fanon, and Yuugi is just awesome as usual.

As soon as I read about the other Parsee, I couldn't help but think of this
http://danbooru.donmai.us/post/show/696527/2girls-absurdres-ankle_cuffs-barefoot-blonde_hair-
so much evil it's poisonously healthy!

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #15 on: October 18, 2010, 11:12:48 PM »
You know, even though I've been playing Persona 4 recently, it didn't occur to me to think "Shadow-Parsee" until almost halfway through.

But since it's ended up as a big huge drama-bomb I'm never gonna click this thread again.

uh I don't begrudge you for not wanting to read drama but you could have probably worded it better, just saying.

Oh god. Parsee gonna rape some shit.

This is amazing, I've always loved the Parsee/Yuugi pair (though in a more sisterly way in my mind) so this is awesome win.

I didn't intend for any of it to appear romantic but apparently it came out that way :V

Ryuu, this fic strikes a key note with me. It's so good I can't help but act out the main character's jealousy as I read. :V

jealous rou is moe imo

>:I

Also, note the librarian font color. Mind = BLOWN


Very nice.  Parsee's nature as a youkai at the start was a good starting point.  Also props for making the human incident actually believable instead of just random.  Waiting for the resolution.

I find the nature of a youkai to be something really intriguing and fun to play with. also I was a bit worried about the human part since the full story doesn't come out until later, so I am glad to hear it was believable as it is now. (be prepared to wait a long time though haw haw haw haw)

I've always been pretty *shrug" about Parsee/Yuugi, but this story added dimensions that made me care about it. Thanks, Ryuu. Well done stuff here.
This.

This was fantastically done, Ryuu. I'm really looking forward to the next part.

thank you both very much. hearing nice things like this is the best thing ever

this is a great continuation from the original. I like your Parsee much better than the usual "I'm so jealous-jealous-jealous" of fanon, and Yuugi is just awesome as usual.

As soon as I read about the other Parsee, I couldn't help but think of this
http://danbooru.donmai.us/post/show/696527/2girls-absurdres-ankle_cuffs-barefoot-blonde_hair-

that's actually the image that inspired this :V
« Last Edit: October 19, 2010, 06:58:16 AM by Roukanken »

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2010, 11:58:02 PM »
There is this delicious, horrible, inevitability to it.  It really resonates with some of my own strugles against mental illness, the having a part of your self you wish would just go away.
I have...a terrible need...shall I say the word?...of religion. Then I go out at night and paint the stars.

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #17 on: October 19, 2010, 12:30:46 AM »
Ryuu's Parsee is the best Parsee  :3

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #18 on: October 30, 2010, 03:45:04 AM »
Himiko speaks the truth! Ryuu's Parsee is the best Parsee!

Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #19 on: October 30, 2010, 05:34:44 AM »
After reading this, I'm quickly becoming a Parsee fan. :3

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #20 on: October 30, 2010, 07:11:52 AM »
above three posts make me feel immeasurably fuzzy inside :3

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #21 on: January 25, 2011, 12:47:50 PM »
oh mannnnnnnnnn I am such a slacker





   Parsee lied on the rubble of what used to be her home, still clutching the wood in her hands. Soot covered her face and legs. She had stopped moving, keeping still upon the remains of the life she wasn?t allowed to have. Even the mirror had fallen silent, sitting on top of a rock and gently kicking its legs back and forth. The cave was totally soundless?the smoke from the fire had dried out the ceiling so even the constant dripping had finally ceased. Parsee found herself suddenly wishing to hear that incessant and constant noise once again.

   ?It?ll be back.? The mirror spoke, folding its arms in its lap. Parsee sighed in response, and rolled away from the mirror. She was no longer aware of the passing of time. Moments into minutes into hours... it all felt the same, moving in the beat with the aching of her chest. Though the happiness she had attained was uncertain, Parsee had felt that it wouldn?t end like the others... but she could see now that she was wrong. Starting with the rubble underneath her, everything would disappear one by one and she would be alone again, no one but her and constant dripping.

   ?Hello~.? A song-like voice broke the silence. Parsee turned her head to see a woman in black with odd color-changing hair smiling and waving at her. ?Parsee Mizuhashi, right? I don?t believe we?ve ever met directly. My name is Byakuren Hijiri.?

   Parsee vaguely remembered seeing the woman at a party once or twice. She turned her head away and rested it against the remains once again, holding the scrap of wood close to her chest.

   ?Oh, come now.? The sound of boots clacking across stone reverberated through the cave. ?Now is not the time for sorrow. Today is a new day!? Byakuren grabbed Parsee by the shoulders and eased her into a sitting position. ?That which is gone can be rebuilt!? The woman smiled warmly.

   Parsee said nothing and stared blankly into the woman?s bright eyes. She found her optimism almost insulting, as if she could stroll into her life out of nowhere and tell her how things would happen. Parsee knew that this was the beginning of the end, the first step into the rest of her life alone. The woman frowned slightly, drawing her brow together, and her eyes took a more serious tone.

   ?Aya asked me to mediate the situation here. I need to know everything you can tell me.?

   Parsee didn?t say anything. She tilted her head to the side and looked away.

   ?Just tell her.? The mirror slid off of its rock and stepped forward, standing next to Parsee and facing Byakuren. ?It?s not like anything you can do will help, anyway.?

   Byakuren drew herself up and looked over the mirror, cupping her chin as she did so. ?So I see.? Byakuren closed her eyes and nodded to herself. ?You?re...? She shook her head slightly, smiled, and extended a hand. ?It?s nice to meet you.?

   ?Uh.? The mirror withdrew slightly. With a bewildered face, it eyed Byakuren up and down and nodded tensely.

   ?Shy to the core, I see.? Byakuren giggled to herself, letting her hand fall to her side. ?But, unfortunately, I really need to know what happened here.?

   Parsee clicked her teeth together for a few moments. ?I woke up this morning and went downstairs. Yuugi and I...? She crossed her arms and drew them in. ?were talking. Next thing we know, torches and fire bottles were everywhere.?

   ?Do you know why this happened??

   Parsee gnashed her teeth together, clenched her hands into fists, balling up the fabric of her arm warmers and looked to the ground. Why? The very question filled her with anger more intense than she could ever imagine. Why, why did the damned humans burn down her house? Burn down her life? What was their reason? If only she could move about freely, if she weren?t bound to this dreary cave, Parsee would rip them all limb from limb. Their yelling echoed in her mind, and she tried to twist the memory into anguished screaming. Their rage turned to fear, their threats into petty bribes for mercy, the man screaming for the girl?s return turned into screaming to her for salvation...

   A thought suddenly shot through Parsee?s mind like a skewer through a bat?s torso. The name repeated itself over and over in her mind. Miyo, Miyo, Miyo, and it suddenly sounded so familiar, but why? A memory burned at the tip of Parsee?s mind, and she sharply drew in breath as she looked up to face Byakuren again. ?Do you have Aya?s paper??

   Byakuren cocked an eyebrow slightly before reaching into a pocket and pulling out a full newspaper. Upon seeing Parsee?s bemused look, she answered, ?magic pockets? with a smile as she handed the paper to the smaller youkai.

     Parsee snatched the paper from her hand and pored over the front page. ?Oni Living In Cave to Underground! Could this Mark the Race?s Return?? Underneath was an image of the house Yuugi had built, the house Parsee had lived in. The paper crumpled beneath her grip, and she could not stop her hands from shaking. It hadn?t occurred to her to think of how the humans knew where to go, how they knew that an oni lived in the house. It was Aya?s fault. Parsee pressed her hand to her face, her fingernails digging into her scalp. Next to her, the mirror was silent, but grinning wildly.

   Parsee took a deep breath and tried to calm herself. ?This isn?t the right one.? She whispered, holding the paper out. Byakuren grabbed the paper and stuffed it in her pocket, ruffling around the inside of it for a few moments.

   ?Hey, Parsee!? A loud voice echoed from the deeper end of the cavern. ?Sorry I was gone so long!?

   Parsee?s ears twitched and she looked away from Byakuren. ?Yuugi?? The pain in her chest began to alleviate. A large part of her believed that Yuugi was never going to come back. The oni ran up, waving with a forced smile, and stopped before the three to catch her breath, bending over and resting her hands on her knees. ?Hijiri?? She asked, looking up at the group. ?What are you?? Yuugi?s voice caught in her throat as her eyes rolled across the mirror, standing behind Parsee with a sinister grin. ?The hell are you doing here?!? Yuugi stepped forward, poised to strike.

   Byakuren stepped between the two, extending an arm outwards.

   ?Hijiri!? Yuugi spoke through grit teeth. ?Why are you protecting that... thing?!?

   ?Now?s not the time for this.? Byakuren?s face had lost its pleasant smile, replaced by only a stony seriousness.

   Yuugi shot air through her teeth. ?What d?you want??

   ?I want to know what happened down here.?

   Yuugi crossed her arms. ?Some humans showed up screamin? about some ?Miyo? and burned my house down.?

   The name again. It struck like lightning through Parsee?s memory.

   ?There?s a Miyo from the village... restaurant owner?s daughter, often comes by for grain...? Byakuren cupped her chin and put on a rather professional looking thinking face. ?But why would they associate her with you??

   ?Y?got me.?

   ?Takahashi.? Parsee spoke. ?I remember now. Miyo and Takahashi were the ones from the article yesterday. A human and an oni in a relationship together.?

   Yuugi clapped a hand to her head. ?Ah, yer right!?

   ?I see.? Byakuren stroked her chin with one finger and closed her eyes, deep in thought.

   ?Speakin? of Takahashi...? Yuugi folded her arms and leaned against a large rock. ?He seems to have disappeared. There?s a huge uproar down in the city?people are sayin? that he was kidnapped by humans. ?S why I took so long gettin? back here.?

   ?And I assume the humans think that the oni have kidnapped Miyo?? Byakuren asked.

   ?Seems that way.? Yuugi clicked her tongue and tapped the ground with her foot. ??Course, we don?t have her. Hell, ?sides Takahashi and me, don?t think any of ?em have even heard the name.?

   ?This is troublesome...? Byakuren?s face tightened and she finally let her arms fall to her sides. ?Two missing people from two races, each race blaming the other...?

   ?The oni are out for blood.? A frightening darkness crossed Yuugi?s face. ?They were paranoid before, but when I started askin? about help for the fire...? She shook her head. ?Might as well have declared war. Did my best to calm them down but...? She shrugged. ?Oni are oni.?

   ?I am afraid to report that it?s not much better above ground. The humans who were chased out of the cave earlier have started to gather more people.? Byakuren?s eyes narrowed. ?When they come back, it won?t just be with pitchforks and fire bottles like before. They?ll be coming with weapons and spells.?

    The two talked back and forth, exchanging information and ideas. Parsee felt a barrier between herself and the two taller women in front of her. They had people to care for, people they wanted to protect. Parsee understood that feeling, she wanted to protect Yuugi but?

   ?You?re too useless.? The mirror hissed in her ear, having slipped behind her while the two were discussing. ?Too dumb, too weak, and too useless to ever do anything for Yuugi.?

   Parsee balled her hands into fists and her shoulders tightened.

   ?This looks bad.? Yuugi muttered. ?I don?t see a way to avoid conflict here.?

   Byakuren was rubbing her temples. ?I, too, am at a loss.?

   ?J-Just.? Parsee spoke suddenly and without thinking, slightly stumbling over her words. ?Just find the two who are missing. That would clear up the misunderstanding.?

   Byakuren smiled. ?That?s a wonderful idea.?

   ?Too bad we don?t have a lead.? Yuugi sighed.

   ?They?re not underground?we know that much.? Byakuren?s face began to brighten again. ?Hoshiguma, could you stall the oni for as long as you can??

   ?I can try, but??

   ?I have an idea!? Byakuren levitated off of the ground and waved. ?I need as much time as you can give me. I?m counting on you!? And she sped off to the above ground.

   Yuugi looked between the path to the underground city, Parsee, and her mirror. Parsee could see her face contorting in frustration.

   ?It?s okay.? Parsee crossed her arms and looked away. ?I?ll be fine.?

   Yuugi nodded tensely and turned towards the city.

   ?No, don?t go!? The mirror cried in a sinister, mocking tone. ?I don?t want to be left alone anymore! I don?t want you to go!?

   Yuugi paused and turned her head. The mirror was glaring at her, and Parsee was looking down and away, her bangs hanging over her face. After a long, hard moment, she turned away and charged towards the city. When the clunking of her geta could no longer be heard, Parsee fell to her knees.

   She felt so weak. So useless. So selfish. Yuugi was off trying to quell the anger of an entire race, and what could Parsee do to assist her? Nothing. All she could do was sit and wallow in her own misery.  The mirror wrapped its arms around her stomach, and planted its head on her back. Parsee held her own head in her hands.

   How nice it must be, to be able to walk freely. To not be bound to a dirty, dank cave. To be able to help the people you love. To have real problems, to have real solutions, to be able to experience more than darkness and moisture, to not be a burden on those who you cared for, to not to have to use others as a crutch, to love yourself.

   If Yuugi had never fallen in the pool, if they had never met, Yuugi wouldn?t have built the house. Aya wouldn?t have written the article. The humans would have never attacked, and the oni would have never have had a reason to attack in return. If Parsee didn?t exist, none of them would be in this situation right now. It was all her fault.

   The mirror nuzzled its cheek against her back. ?I really hate you, you know??

   Parsee?s arms fell to her sides and she slumped forward into the hard, rocky ground. ?I know.?

   The mirror giggled and laughed, running it?s hands over Parsee?s stomach. Moments passed achingly slow as the mirror deliberately dragged its hands across Parsee?s entire body, whispering in her ear. Parsee made no move against it. She no longer had the energy to fight it. It was right. Everything it said was right.

   It had rolled Parsee onto her back and began nuzzling her neck when Byakuren returned. She made her presence known kneeling down by poking Parsee in the forehead with a large smile on her face. ?Is Yuugi still in the city??

   Parsee lightly nodded.

   Byakuren made a slight groan. ?I was hoping for a convenient meetup here. Though if she?s still not here, she must still be stalling the oni... that?s good.? She drew herself up and brushed the dirt off of her knees. ?I?ll go meet her there then.? Byakuren waved and ran down the cave towards the underground.

   She felt a little guilty leaving Parsee behind. Byakuren had seen her particular affliction on youkai in the past, and it was something that was very difficult to overcome... She shook her head and put the thought to the back of her mind. One thing at a time?no point in trying to help the girl if a fight brought her cave down around her pointy little ears.

   Once in the city, it wasn?t difficult to locate Yuugi?most of the oni were gathered around her as she gave orders. When she spotted Byakuren, she excused herself and ran over to the magician, pulling her into an alley.

   ?Sorry about that.? Yuugi rubbed the back of her head. ?When I got here, it was obvious that they?re to pissed to reason with... so I just took lead to slow ?em down that way.?

   ?That?s a very smart move.? Byakuren smiled. ?I sent Aya and the Captain?s crew to look for the missing two and I asked Reimu to slow down the humans as much as possible.?

   ?Ohh?? Yuugi cocked an eyebrow. ?Bet she wasn?t happy about that.?

   Byakuren chuckled softly. ?She grumbled, but Reimu wants to avoid a conflict as much as we do.?

   ?So what?s the plan now??

   Byakuren frowned and closed her eyes, leaning against the wall behind her. ?We hope that someone finds the couple before the groups start moving.?

   ?Hm.? Yuugi folded her arms and nodded. ?I?ll get back to stalling them, then.? She turned, but before she could take a step out of the alley, Byakuren grabbed her arm.

   ?There?s something else. About that girl.?

   ?Parsee?? Yuugi sighed, frustration overtaking her voice. ?When this is done, I?m going to punch that copy right in the??

   ?Don?t.? In that moment, Byakuren?s eyes reminded Yuugi of a seasoned warrior. ?It is something she must overcome on her own. Attacking it would only serve to hurt her further.?

   ?Wh...? Byakuren tightened her grip on Yuugi?s arm. She was surprisingly strong. ?Okay, okay. I get it.?

   ?Good.? Byakuren?s soft, smiling face returned. ?Well, best of luck!? She waved and took to flight, heading back to Parsee?s cave. When she arrived, she found that the clone had Parsee?s head in her lap and it was playing with her hair. If Byakuren didn?t know better, it would have been a cute image.

   ?I?m back!? She called, floating down and sitting next to Parsee. ?All that?s left is to wait.?

   ?Mm.?

   Byakuren smiled. She found herself wishing she had gotten to know the girl better, maybe have something to talk about. She made a note to drink at Parsee?s table at the next party?at least, assuming there would be another party. Byakuren shivered slightly and shook her head. No point in thinking negatively?just gotta plan for whatever may happen...

   ?So why are you still here?? The mirror shot a sidelong glance to Byakuren. ?Shouldn?t you be searching for that girl??

   ?Nope.? Byakuren made herself cozy against a large rock. ?Aya and the Captain?s crew are searching for her. I will wait here to delay whatever group passes through first.?

   ?Delay them how?? The mirror began twirling a lock of Parsee?s bangs in its fingers.

   Byakuren paused, her smile momentarily fading from her face. ?However I can.?

   The mirror snickered. ?I see.?

   Time passed painfully slow. The mirror kept toying with Parsee?s hair and idly responding to Byakuren?s small-talk. Parsee could tell that Byakuren was getting tense. Each moment that passed was another moment the oni and humans prepared for battle, another moment the couple was missing.

   Clattering could be heard in the distance. Byakuren immediately stood and dashed over towards the underground city. ?I can see torches. The oni are coming.? Voices began to trickle in from the opposite cave. Byakuren spun on her heel and ran over to the other side. ?Here, too. I wasn?t expecting them both at once...? She returned to her previous spot next to Parsee with a scrunched up face, chewing on the end of her thumb, deep in thought.

   Parsee sat up and slinked farther back, deeper into the shadows of the cave. The noises grew louder and louder before two large groups filled the cave. The humans were covered in makeshift armor, carrying farm equipment, torches and rusted swords. At their head stood Reimu, looking frustrated and tired.

   The oni were fitted in dull armor and duller weapons. However, what they lacked in proper equipment they made up for in fury, yelling and screaming and clapping their shields against their breastplates. Leading them stood Yuugi, tall with bravado and a weird smile. Parsee could tell that Yuugi didn?t want to fight just by looking at her... so why couldn?t the oni notice?

   ?Return Miyo to us, you demons!? A man yelled.

   An oni snarled in return. ?What did you do to Taka you miserable sacks of flesh?!?

   The bickering continued back and forth, but neither side was willing to move before their leader. Parsee ground her teeth together. From the oni she could feel longing for the intelligence of the humans, for their wit and their technique. The humans desired the strength of the oni, their bravery and carefree lives. Their feelings burned stronger and stronger and stronger... it made Parsee so angry.

   ?I?ll rip off your horns and wear them as a trophy!?

   It just made her so...

   ?I?ll eat you and your entire family!?

   So...

   ?We?ll make sure to extinct your race this time, you dogs!?

   So... pissed off!

   ?Let?s get them!!?

   ?Rip them to shreds!!?

   At that moment, Parsee screamed. It overpowered the booming voices of the oni. It blasted over the riot of humans. All of her frustration, all of her anger, all of her despair cascaded over the underground. It resonated and echoed, bouncing around the cave chamber, shaking loose dust and rousing the bats to flee to a deeper part of the cavern. The yelling stopped, and there was only the remnants of the roar remaining. Without realizing it, Parsee had stumbled between the two groups, the oni at her left and the humans at her right, with both slowly edging away from her. Her eyes were glowing an intensely bright green, lividly looking from group to group. ?SHUT UP.? She screamed again. ?SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP.?

   ?I-It?s just a girl!? A human shouted. ?Ignore her and get the?? His voice caught in his throat as Parsee fixated her piercing gaze on him.

   Reimu sighed and ran a hand through her hair. ?Don?t you know who that is?? She grinned slightly. ?That?s the Green Eyed Monster. She?s a fearsome beast.?

   Parsee focused her gaze on Reimu. Reimu?s pretty black hair and smug face and confident stature, oh how Parsee just wanted to shove that face into the dirt!

   ?Yeah!? Yuugi chimed in. ?She?s more than a match even for me!?

   Parsee spun towards the oni. Yuugi! Yuugi! How stupid could she be to not notice how miserable Parsee had been?! Did that idiot only think of alcohol and parties?! How unfair!

   The angrier she got, the brighter her eyes became. Panicked murmuring began among the humans, and the oni began shooting each other sidelong glances. The humans, the oni... they were all so petty! Parsee would show them the true meaning of desire... she?d show them what it feels to?

   ?Waaaaiiiit!? In a torrent of wind, Aya charged in above everyone. ?I found them! Look!? She pointed at the cave leading above ground. A tall, thin and excessively lanky male was running in with a delicate looking woman at most half of his size.

   ?We weren?t kidnapped!? The girl shouted.

   ?We eloped!? The oni added.

   The two groups clamored over the couple, swarming over them. Yuugi and Reimu stood rooted to the ground, breathing heavy sighs of relief. Byakuren trotted up to them. ?Whew, I was all ready to start clobbering people!? She smiled again. ?I?ll go handle them, so you guys can relax!? Without a moment?s delay, Byakuren melded into the groups.

   ?Man...? Yuugi rubbed her forehead. She strode over to Parsee and pat her on the back. ?That was some nice work there! Even I was kinda shakin? in my boots!? Parsee?s face was buried in her hands, a green glow escaping through her cracks between her fingers. ?Uh, Parsee? You alright??

   Parsee hated Yuugi. She hated Reimu. She hated Byakuren. She hated the oni, the humans, the cave, the underground city, the above world, the pool of water, the rocks, the bats, the mushrooms... Everything just made her so frustrated. Everything made her so angry! It wasn?t fair! But the thing Parsee hated most...

   Byakuren began to lead the oni and humans above ground. Their voices became more and more dim. Aya followed the group, muttering something about getting a scoop. Reimu mentioned taking a nap, and excused herself. The only ones left in the cave were Yuugi, Parsee, and the mirror, who had reappeared standing near the large pool of water.

   Parsee began to walk towards it. The thing she hated most... the thing she hated most was...!

   The mirror?s lips curved into a sadistic smile. She could feel the insult at the tip of its tongue waiting to strike at the first chance presented. She knew what it was. She had known all this time, but she didn?t want to admit it to herself. The thing she hated most...

   ?Well?? The mirror sneered, barely a foot away from Parsee.

   Parsee quickly grabbed the mirror and drew it into an embrace. ?It?s okay.? She muttered.

   ?What?? A look of bewilderment crossed the mirror?s face. ?What are you???

   ?It?s okay.? Parsee repeated, stroking the mirror?s back. ?You can let it out.?

   The mirror?s face twisted in confusion before it?s eyes began to water. It sniffled and choked back sobs before finally letting out a loud wail, tears pouring from it?s eyes. ?I hate everything!? It shouted. ?I hate being jealous! I hate being useless! I hate being stuck in this stupid cave! I want to leave!?

   Parsee said nothing, and only continued to stroke the mirror?s back. Yuugi watched from the center of the cave.

   ?I hate having to rely on everyone! I hate being unable to do anything! I hate feeling angry and sad! I hate feeling frustrated!? It hiccuped. ?But the thing I hate most is...!?

   Parsee tightened her grip on the mirror, holding it as close as she could. She could feel it?s hands shaking as it clutched at her back.

   ?Is myself!? The mirror let out another large cry, sobbing and hiccuping loudly. Its sounds became quieter and quieter until silence filled the cavern, not even an echo remaining. Parsee was holding nothing. The mirror was gone.

   Parsee sat at the basin of the pool. She could hear Yuugi walking up behind her. The oni grabbed the smaller girl and pulled her into a hug, Parsee?s face buried in her chest. ?I?m sorry.? Yuugi whispered.

   Parsee nodded. That was all she needed Yuugi to say.


YUUGI'S GLISTENING ABS AND VIBRATING MUSCLES AND SHE OBSERVED PARSEE'S SILKY SMOOTH MISERABLE SKIN and oh yeah aya and reimu left
^Considered abridgement to departure scene for brevity, improvement y/y?
« Last Edit: January 25, 2011, 01:44:00 PM by Psychifex »

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #22 on: January 25, 2011, 03:41:06 PM »
Yaaay. Now Parsee just needs to spontaneously turn into a kitten and my head will explode.

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #23 on: January 26, 2011, 12:45:21 AM »
You are so good at story-telling ;~;

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[17:42] <Amra> as she does something out of character

Iced Fairy

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #24 on: January 26, 2011, 09:16:27 PM »
Waits warmly for the ending....

Heh, all joking aside, this was a very nice segment.  I think you could have polished it a little more by delineating the viewpoint shifts a little better, but it's nice that Parsee is no longer alone in a cave with a box of scraps.

Ryuu

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #25 on: September 20, 2012, 07:39:28 AM »
so one day annie was walking down the street and wait wrong thread





   She gasped. She barely had a moment to suck in air before the ocean claimed her. She struggled, finding herself being dragged down by the capsizing of the ship. Debris sank all around her, just barely out of her reach. She felt something grab at her leg... a hand, large and rough... faces of the sailors flashed through her mind. She was sinking, sinking, so she kicked wildly at the arm until it released her. She twisted and writhed, fighting with all of her strength to swim upwards. Her chest felt tight.

   Something large broke the surface of the water, charging down at her. It was the ship's mast! She tried to avoid it, but her movement underwater was sluggish. Part of the mast struck her square in the chest, pulling her down with it. Bubbles of precious air were pushed from her lungs by the force of the impact. Her chest was on fire. Her throat was beginning to tighten. Her vision blackened.

   She wrenched herself free from the mast and pushed herself upward. Everything was getting darker and darker. The light above water became a dim pinpoint at the end of her vision. She reached out and grabbed something. It was wooden. As the air burst forth from her lungs, she could feel a splinter break off in her hand. For a moment, the stinging pain in her hand was the only thing she could experience. The taste of salt cascaded into her mouth. Everything was black.

   Her mind was swimming. Vague recollections of floating in inky depths. Thirst. Her eyes and throat burned. There was a distant and familiar sound. She thought of shells. Something cold was licking at her feet and legs. Voices. She started to hear voices. They spoke in a bizarre and unfamiliar tongue. She thought that they were demons of the sea, come to swallow her soul and devour her body. Her mind screamed for her to move, but her limbs were heavy?it took all her strength to move inches.

   She was lifted into the air, no doubt so the beasts could consume her from all directions. She forced her eyes open. The light was blinding. She could make out the vague shape of a human?s head. The bastards didn?t even have the courtesy to eat her in their true forms. Darkness consumed her once again.

   She awoke.

   She felt as if someone had taken her head and stirred up all of its contents. Opening her eyes, she discovered she was in a strange looking room, lying upon a soft mat. She sat up and looked around, the blanket falling from her body. A wet cloth dropped into her lap. She was suddenly aware of the feeling of moisture on her forehead. Did she have a fever? Where was she? The room she was in was of no make she recognized, filled with strange items of an unfamiliar design?the only familiar thing being a bucket of water at her side.

   She sat up and drew herself from the covers. All of her clothes were gone, replaced by a half-open robe, her body exposed for her to see. Her chest and legs were completely covered in bandages, as well as a large portion of her right arm and hand. Her head was beginning to throb. She tried to figure out how she ended up in this room.

   She remembered a boat. Where was it going? Why was she on it? Her head throbbed again.  She remembered being thrown into the water by some huge force. And then something striking her very hard. What happened? Everything else was a blank. She reached deeper and deeper into her memory to only find emptiness and the pain of her aching head. Fear shook her heart. The room began to spin and the air became thick and stale. She rushed to her feet and clamored towards the door, but pinpricks covered her face and neck and the edges of her vision blurred white. She collapsed to the ground, knocking aside the bucket, splashing water upon her legs. The pain in her head and the coldness of the water absorbed all of her awareness.

   She hardly noticed when the door to the room slid open, and a man and a woman rushed in. The turned her over and spoke in a langauge she had never heard before. The woman fixed her robe while the man asked her questions she couldn?t understand over and over. She opened her mouth to speak, but her mouth felt as if it was filled with sand. Thirst suddenly assaulted her senses. She swallowed, and attempted to speak again.

   ?Water...?

   The man?s questioning stopped and he looked at the woman he entered the room with. The two exchanged bemused looks.

   ?Water, please...? She spoke again, her voice cracking. She pointed at the bucket.

   A look of comprehension spread across the woman?s face. She rushed out of the room and returned moments later with a crude wooden cup. Cool liquid poured down the girl?s throat.

   ?Thank you.? She whispered.

   The man tapped her on the shoulder and she turned her head to face him. He pointed at his chin. ?Yusuke.?

   He pointed at her. A name. What was her name? She wracked her mind, and a single word finally arose. She remembered. ?Parsee.?

   Over the next few days, Yusuke began teaching Parsee his language. Through great strains, she learned that she was discovered on the beach among some wreckage. No one else was found. She decided to put her memory aside and focus on recovering and learning the language of her rescuers. Thankfully, Yusuke was a good teacher, and she a good learner. She could at least ask for food and water.

   She learned that Yusuke was a carpenter, and that the woman he was with was his mother, Chiaki. They were of the family Mizuhashi. After Parsee regained some of her strength, Chiaki put her to work cleaning the house and learning how to cook.

   ?Fish.? Chiaki said, slapping a large trout on the counter in front of them. ?Knife.? She held the kitchen tool up for Parsee to see. Parsee nodded and repeated the words, commiting them to memory. It was slow, first she would learn words. Then sentences. Then grammar. It was months before she could hold proper conversations with those around her. In that time, Chiaki taught her how to keep the house and cook their meals. People would visit and spend long amounts of time inspecting Parsee. At times, she felt like a slave and a caged animal, but Yusuke would always do something to make her feel better.

   In the end, she was truly grateful that he saved her life.

   One morning, as Parsee hung the wet laundry, she observed Yusuke doing his morning training. He would stand behind their house and practice sword swings for at least an hour every single day, without fail. It was always something that mystified Parsee for a reason that escaped her.

   She threw a blanket over a wire and he sliced through the air. She froze up. An image flashed through her mind, but it faded before she could grasp it. Her eyes fixed upon his sword and she moved towards him, her hands shaking and her breath shallow.

   "Are you alright?" He turned towards her with a worried expression, placing a hand gently on her shoulder.

   "Your sword..." She searched for the words. "May I hold it?"

   Yusuke seemed hesitant. "My sword? Why would you--"

   "My memory." She spoke barely above a whisper.

   Yusuke's eyes widened. It was the first time Parsee had mentioned her memory since she first started speaking. He looked around, almost as if he was looking to see if anyone was watching, and then he slowly held the sword out to Parsee.

   She grabbed the hilt of the blade and pulled it from his grasp. The sword was heavy, yet somehow familiar. The sun reflected off of the metal and the glare struck her in the eyes. She was on the deck of a ship, a man was running towards her shouting in a language she did not recognize. In a snap of the wrist, he was dead. Red splashed over her face. Another man had just run through someone she recognized in front of her, and then advanced. She screamed in rage and cut him down. There was another, and another...

   "Parsee!" Violent shaking turned her sight into mist. She blinked and the scenery changed... she was on land, near some laundry, with a foriegn man gripping her shoulders.

   She blinked. "Yusuke..." She became aware of the blade in her hands. "I'm sorry. Here." She shoved the blade back into his hands and stumbled backwards, falling to the ground.

   "What happened? You were screaming something." He sheathed the blade and concern clouded his normally cheery face.

   "I..." Parsee searched for the right word. She wished dearly that she had learned more. "Remembered."

   "What did you remember? You..." He paused, glancing at his sword. "You know how to use a blade. Why?"

   Parsee remembered being assaulted on the ocean. She remembered who they were, but the word for them was not something she was taught. There was something else they were called... "Dogs of the sea." She spoke.

   Yusuke tilted his head and cocked an eyebrow. Parsee stood and brushed the dirt from her rear. She explained that was the term they used for those who rob other ships.

   "Ahhh." He nodded in understanding. "Pirates."

   "Pirates." She replied. "Yes."

   "Yusuke!" An unfamiliar voice rang out, coming from the side of the house. "Don't tell me you have another girl back--" A woman stepped out. The first word that came to Parsee's mind upon viewing her was "beauty". She was fair-skinned with flowing black hair, held back by a pin with a stunning flower arrangement. "Oh!" The girl's face lit up with surprise and delight. "Is this that girl you fishermen found?"

   "Ah, Ayane." Yusuke nodded and turned to face the woman. "Yes. This is Parsee." He turned again towards Parsee. "This is Ayane. She's a childhood friend of mine--don't let her give you a hard time, alright?" He grinned and winked at her.

   "Ha!" The girl pouted. "You should be more worried about him! The definition of womanizer!"

   Parsee wondered what "womanizer" meant. She greatly looked forward to the day when she would never have to ponder the meaning of a word.

   "But still..." Ayane moved forward and looked Parsee over. Parsee stiffened as the girl's face grew incredibly close and she could feel her eyes combing over Parsee's every detail. "She's real pretty. Exotic looking too. Her hair is so bright and her eyes..." Ayane locked eyes with Parsee. "I've never seen blue eyes before."

   "Thank you?" Parsee's face flushed.

   "She's blushing! Aren't you just the cutest!" Ayane giggled and hugged Parsee. "Have you been around town yet?"

   "Um, no... I've just been helpi--"

   "You've been here for how long and you haven't seen our town yet?" Ayane looked absolutely shocked. "Yusuke! What kind of man are you?"

   "A busy one." Yusuke shrugged. "I offered to take her out before, but she wanted to learn our tongue first."

   "Well!" Ayane smiled brightly and took Parsee's hands. "You can speak now right? So let's go!"

   "But I have to--" Parsee vaguely gestured to the laundry when Yusuke began throwing the laundry over the wire.

   "I'll take care of it. "He smiled. "You should look around."

   "Uh... thanks." Parsee bowed. Ayane didn't waste another moment and pulled Parsee around the house and down the street. She energetically pointed out building after building, detailing it's purpose and who it was run by and who lived where. Parsee barely had time to process the information and ask when she didn't understand something.

   By that evening, Parsee was exhausted. Today was the longest she'd been running around, and her poor fitting borrowed clothing was starting to wear on her. They stood in the village bazaar surrounded by voices and people--many of which were outright staring at Parsee.

   "Your clothes don't fit too well, do they?" Ayane spoke, apparently reading Parsee's mind. Before Parsee could respond, Ayane continued, "Alright! Let's get some fabric and I'll make you something better!"

   "Oh no, you don't have to..." Parsee waved her hands. "It's alright, really."

   "It's not alright! I'll have you know that I'm a great seamstress!" Ayane pounded her chest. "I'll get it done in a jiffy. Consider it a gift."

   Parsee sighed. "Alright. Thank you very much."

   Ayane tugged Parsee over to the cloth vendor and asked Parsee what she wanted. Parsee pointed at a relatively cheap fabric, so Ayane bought the most expensive fabric of the same color. Ayane looked rather pleased with herself for a moment, before she looked at the orange sky above them. "Oh dear!" She gasped. "It's getting late. We better get home before the youkai come out."

   "Youkai?" Parsee questioned.

   "Ummm." Ayane put a finger to her chin as she thought of another word. "Monsters and such."

   "I see..." Parsee murmured. Ayane rushed Parsee back to her house and said a quick goodbye before running off herself. Inside, Parsee could smell the aroma of grilled fish. She quickly realized how hungry she was, taking off her shoes and entering the kitchen. Yusuke and Chiaki were just sitting down with plates of food in front of them.

   "Oh, welcome home." Chiaki smiled. "The food is on the counter. Help yourself."

    "Thank you." Parsee gathered herself a plate and sat with them. They said a quick prayer and began eating.

   "I hope Ayane didn't give you too much trouble." Yusuke began. "She might look like a woman, but she's still a kid at heart."

   Chiaki laughed. "That Ayane! I've never seen so much energy in a person. She could beat out most of the men, I think!"

   Parsee smiled. "It was no trouble at all. I had fun."

   "I'm glad to hear that." Yusuke looked noticibly relieved.

   The next months passed slowly and blissfully. Parsee spent her days with Ayane and Yusuke, becoming close friends with both. Her mastery over their language grew as well. She became quick at the house chores--though most of her cooking attempts ended with something burned--and spent a lot of her time out of the house. The issue of her memories became more and more distant. She would never be able to return to where she came from, nor would she want to if the opportunity arose. She stepped forward into a new chapter of her life.

   One quiet morning, Parsee was walking through the bazaar with Ayane."Say, don't you think Yusuke is really handsome?" Ayane asked suddenly.

   Parsee flushed red. "W-What?"

   Ayane laughed. "You do, huh!"

   "W-Well..." Parsee looked away. It was true that out of all the men she knew, Yusuke was definitely the most attractive of them.

   "I see..." Ayane smiled and then her eyes widened suddenly. "Oh dear, I forgot I had some things to take care of at home. I'm sorry, I have to go!"

   "It's fine!" Parsee yelled to a running Ayane. "See you tomorrow!" Parsee vaguely wondered what Ayane had to do. She didn't often forget to complete her jobs. Parsee busied about the village, finishing her errands and saying hello to those she knew. She smiled and looked towards the sky. She was finally settling into her life in this strange land... she didn't think she could be happier.

   When she returned home, only Yusuke was home. "Where's Chiaki?" Parsee asked.

   "Oh, um." Yusuke flushed. "She's doing some, uh... errands. In town."

   "I was just doing errands for her..." Parsee tilted her head, holding up the basket full of goods.

   "She forgot something." He added quickly. "A-Anyway, come sit here, please."

   Parsee shrugged and complied, leaving the basket on the counter on the way.

   "S-So I uh..." Yusuke flushed and looked away.

   "Are you alright?" Parsee cocked an eyebrow.

   "Let's get married." He said in one short breath.

   Parsee flushed red and her mouth hung open. "C-Come again?"

   He grabbed her hand and stared her in the eyes, his face a bright red. "Let's get married."

   Parsee learned that her happiness had yet to truly reach it's boundaries. They planned for the ceremony to take place within the month. In the coming days, people stopped by to give their congradulations. A ceremonial gown was delivered. Chiaki was bustling about the house in excitement--the most energy Parsee had ever seen the woman display.

   When the night came, the ceremony was over too quick for Parsee. When she arrived in this land, she hoped for the best. However, she did not consider that the best would be what she would recieve. Night fell and she entered her bedroom with her husband. That night, two became one.

   The next morning, a gift arrived. Yusuke gave a sigh of relief and passed it on to Parsee. "I was hoping this would have been done yesterday, but... I had this made for you."

    Parsee unraveled the gift. It was a new garb of clothing, but the style and feel of the cloth was outlandish compared to what she normally wore. It was a very ornate brown garb with several layers of clothing. The dress opened much wider than normal clothing, and had trailing red cloth hanging from the bottom. The whole outfit looked somehow familiar.

   "I had the best tailor in the village make this from your old clothing." Yusuke explained. "They made it more... traditional, but I'm sure you see it still has a lot of its old flavor."

   Parsee smiled brightly and hugged her husband. "It's wonderful."

   Several weeks passed. Parsee bustled about in the village wearing her new favorite dress. She wondered what time her husband would be getting home... the word still tickled her and filled her with delight. "Husband". Shipwrecked in a strange land and she had such a wonderful end to her story. She could hardly believe it.

   A bit of a bounce was added in her step. She had suddenly realized that her cycle was slightly late, and she began to wonder if she was with child as well. She smiled and giggled to herself. What a wonderful, storybook ending.

   Thunder cracked above her. Dark clouds were moving in from the sea. She sighed, wanting to spend the day smiling about in the sunlight, but it seemed as though she would have to hurry and get her errands done. She rushed towards the bazaar to buy some cloth to make some repairs to their clothing at home, but by the time she arrived, the vendor had already packed up his supply.

   "Sorry, miss." He rubbed the top of his bald head.  "The rain ruins it. Come back tomorrow, and I'll be able to sell some to ya."

   Parsee nodded and turned, sighing to herself. She was hoping to get those repairs done today... An idea struck her. Ayane often had extra cloth laying about her house. Parsee skipped off towards her friend's house.

   When she arrived, she heard a strange noise... like gasping from the side of the house. She peered around the side and saw nothing, but she could clearly hear the sound. She walked down the edge of the house and peered in one of the windows.

   Parsee dropped the basket. She backed away from the window slowly, step by step. Her husband wouldn't possibly betray her, would he? Something foul grew in her chest. He wouldn't possibly lay with her friend, would he? That couldn't possibly be him in that room, could it? A dark voice in her mind assured her that it was.

   She turned and she ran. Thunder cracked above her and rain began to pour, soaking through her dress within moments. Why would he betray her? Was she not pretty enough for him? She should have known from the start that she would not have been good enough. Mud splashed on her legs and the hem of her dress.   

   The town vanished behind her.  Was she not smart enough? Was she not energetic enough? Rain still assaulted her through the canopy of the trees. The brush lashed at her arms and legs. The wind howled in her ears.

   She tripped and fell. She began rolling down a hill, her body bouncing roughly off of large rocks. The light began to fade. Why wasn't she good enough? Mud covered her from head to toe. Why wasn't she prettier? Mud splashed into her eyes and mouth. Why wasn't she a better person? Mud matted her hair to her face. Why was she so undesirable?

   Parsee continued to roll, deeper into the depths of the earth. Oh, how she wished she could have Ayane's face! Her wonderful, long hair! Her deep brown eyes and her energetic personality! Parsee's head struck another rock, the sickening crack echoing into the distance. If only she could match her skill as a seamstress, as a cook!

   Pain gnawled and twisted in Parsee's chest. As she roughly collided with the ground, she was oblivious to the pain her body was enduring. She rolled onto her knees and crawled forward, her face stained with tears. Why? She continued to ask herself, why? Why?

   She crawled forward towards a pool of water. She peered into it, to spite the face she saw. In her rippling reflection, she saw a pair of glowing green eyes.

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Nihilanth

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Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #26 on: September 20, 2012, 11:31:57 AM »
Is it normal for my get teary-eyed and somewhat angry after I reading those stories? ;_;

On a more positive note, this is some superb writing, nice job with these my good man!  :)

AnonymousPondScum

Re: The Girl in the Cave
« Reply #27 on: September 22, 2012, 05:51:36 AM »
This.

I like all this.