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[Inheritance] Spirit Cold; Ch.1 - Closed
Topic Started: Aug 18 2017, 05:43 AM (1,644 Views)
Chizu
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Knight Radiant
Some time ago...
The voice on the other end of the line gave him pause. He stood alone in his dormitory's living room, Carbuncle watching him from the couch, cellphone pressed to his ear.

"Grandfather?" Rei asked. "Is everything alright?"

"I'm fine. I hope I'm not interrupting your studies. But there is...something happening in Kyoto that might interest you. If you have time, you should come home."

He glanced out the window, the bright Miyazaki summer sunlight filtering in through the glass. His eyes drifted towards the calendar, counting down the days until school started, mentally calculating last-minute flight prices from Miyazaki to Osaka. It was so rare to be called home like this.

"I'll be home as soon as I can."

"I'm glad to hear it." A pause, on the other end of the line. "Bring friends, if you can. You may need them."



JR Kyoto Line between Osaka Station and Kyoto Station

August, Mid-afternoon

The train sped through the Kansai region, halfway along its route from Osaka, where their flight from Miyazaki had landed, to Kyoto. It was a trip that Rei had made before, multiple times since attending school at Senki. It was the first time he had made the trip with such a large group, however. It should have been fun and relaxing, a trip home before school started again after summer break. Instead, Rei found that he couldn't shake his worry.

The four of them occupied two pairs of seats that faced each other. Rei sat in one of the backwards-facing seats, nearest the window. He looked up from checking his phone for what felt like the thousandth time, looking to see if his grandfather had sent him another message.

"Thank you again for coming with me on short notice," Rei said, offering them a tired smile.

His grandfather had refused to explain the situation more on the phone, so Rei didn't know what they were getting into. All he knew was that things in the supernatural community of the city had taken a delicate turn since the last time he had come home, and his grandfather somehow thought that he would be able to help.

He looked out the window, wondering as they approached Kyoto, what they would find when they arrived.
Edited by Chizu, Aug 18 2017, 05:45 AM.
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Kyrielite
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コンセントにチンコ突っ込んでしびれ死ぬといいわ!
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"How could I refuse? Especially when you made such a face." the idol smiled playfully.

Even (especially) under the circumstances, it was hard not to toy around with him. In every group, there were people who simply naturally gravitated towards being the designated prey for such things.

Contrary to usual expectation, getting the time off hadn't been hard. As long as it didn't interfere with her work or otherwise compromise her, she was largely free to do as she pleased thanks to her special arrangements at work. Besides, she'd been practicing for the festival incessantly for days. A short break to recover wouldn't be noticed probably.
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Kayo
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Félicie sat next to Hibiki, who frankly made her a bit uncomfortable. She couldn't exactly describe it. Maybe it was her smile--too cute, too perfect. Maybe it was the way she teased Rei. Maybe it was her success as an idol--an idol Félicie didn't really recognize because she was new to Japan. Regardless, she tried her best to keep a bit of distance between herself and Hibiki, without seeming too obvious about it.

To distract herself, she smiled sympathetically at Rei. "It's absolutely fine, senpai," she told him, reaching forward to pat his knee reassuringly, "I enjoy the road, and I haven't seen Kyoto yet, so I'm actually a bit excited."

A part of her was also very happy that she was considered a close enough friend to be invited to this emergency call home. Her uncle almost didn't let her go, but his charge was quick to quiet him, saying that it was important for her to do things like this in high school. Félicie had no doubt that they were somehow watching her now.

She reached into her back and pulled out four canned coffee's, offering them to the group. The vending machines at the train station were too fun to pass up, so she went a little crazy...
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bonniecanuck
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Bonnie Bushi
Edie watched the scenery flash by as she listened to her companions on the trip. Though she had come back from Tokyo about a week ago, the fact that Rei was in need of some help meant that she was willing to go to Kyoto to support him with the people he was close with. As it were, a notable few - namely Hibiki and Félicie - were mutual acquaintances, which would be convenient to ensuring things went around fine.

"It's alright,"
she replied comfortingly to assuage the tension in Rei's voice. She wanted nothing but the best for her friends, so coming along was, for her, the right thing to do. She had no real personal stakes to come here, but whatever she could do, she would do it.

That being said, she relished opportunities to travel and go places. She had been to Kyoto once or maybe twice before, but while she did remember a good deal of the sights and sounds of the historical city, she found the opportunity to go back quite welcome. Though this wasn't a sightseeing trip, she would enjoy whatever she could.

Shaking her head at Félicie to say no thank you to her offer of coffee - she was always a tea person - Edie checked the time to approximate how long they had been going and where they might be now. Are we still in Takatsuki? Or have we reached the outer Kyoto districts like Gion or Nishinomiya yet? If it was the latter the train might begin to slow down any moment now. She pulled her phone out to check, but while she did she asked Rei a question. "May I ask where the Yasukage Shrine and where we'll be staying is? I'd just like to know out of curiosity, if it's not a problem."
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Chizu
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Knight Radiant
Rei's eyes widened slightly at Hibiki's words, a slight flush of color appearing on his cheeks. He nodded, using the motion to turn his head away from her before she could notice. "I appreciate it, Hibiki-san," he said. He offered Felicie a sheepish smile as she spoke up, taking one of the canned coffees from her with a grateful nod.

"Thank you," he said, opening the can and taking a sip of the coffee. He didn't know what the plans would be when they arrived, but whatever happened, he wanted to be awake. "Unfortunately, I don't know how much sightseeing we'll be able to do on this trip, but you're always welcome to come back to Kyoto another time."

He gave Edie a nod of thanks as well when she spoke up, saying that she was alright. Before answering her question, he took a slow sip of coffee, his eyes flicking towards the scenery that flitted by outside of the train. "It's in Yamashina," he said, naming the city's southeastern ward. "It's unfortunately a little out of the way, but it's peaceful and private." Unlike some of the larger exorcist houses, who had gravitated towards the center of cities, Rei's ancestors had preferred the privacy of the outskirts, insisting that their art wasn't something that needed to be turned into a spectacle. The solitude had grated on him when he was younger, but he could see the use for it now, particularly for people like Hibiki who could be easily recognized. He turned back towards the others.

"We'll be staying at the shrine," he said. "I've already talked to my grandfather, and we have the space. Depending on what's happening in the city, it might be safer to stay within the shrine's grounds." His expression darkened slightly at the thought, his eyes moving to the sky outside the train window, still bright and blue. If there were problems in Kyoto of a supernatural nature, he would be glad to be behind the shrine's barrier before night fell.
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Kyrielite
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コンセントにチンコ突っ込んでしびれ死ぬといいわ!
"Well, I did promise to get Marichin some wagashi while we were there, so I intend to at least make time for that."

Not that it would take much time. It was routinely sold in souvenir ships at the train stations, so it wasn't particularly hard to get a some if it came to that, though a more thorough check for the nicer sorts would be better. Well, they host would probably know where to get some wouldn't they?

"Anyway where we're going is actually a pretty nice place. I stayed there some time while we were shooting the video for Cosmic Twinkle Star." she added "It's nice and quiet, and the train service is convenient."
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Kayo
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Félicie put the two unclaimed coffees back in her bag, settling back into her seat. She pulled out her phone to search for some of the key words that were being tossed around in the conversation. Her translation glyph granted her understanding of the Japanese language, but not culture, food, or geography.

Yamashina in Kyoto: Japan. Cherry blossoms in the spring. Basically the 'burbs. Search specifically for Kyoto or all you get are pictures of a Japanese man, probably named Yamashina.

Yasukage Shrine: Rei's family shrine. Some artistic photos. Cherry blossoms in the spring. This is Japan.

Wagashi (n): Adorable little sweets. Could be made into the shape of bunnies or cats. Some get really expensive. Something to ask Uncle about.

Cosmic Twinkle Star: Search result yields lots of pictures of Hibiki...


Félicie made a face (discreetly and while taking a sip of her coffee) and put her phone back to sleep. "Still, I've never been to a Japanese shrine. It would be an experience," she told Rei.
Edited by Kayo, Aug 29 2017, 10:55 AM.
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bonniecanuck
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Bonnie Bushi
Edie nodded, but she could see the fearful expression crossing Rei's face. She could tell that he was worried for the state of the city and its people, and she too felt that the best thing to do was to head inside right away, sightseeing be damned. Safety came first.

Still, she wanted to keep a positive and upbeat attitude about the whole thing. She had little if any experience in dealing with magic, but as long as Rei was around she felt safe enough dealing with it.

She kept her mind off the troubles as she checked her phone's map of Yamashina. The area was well enough outside the city, but had great access to the transport network that getting to and from there wouldn't be a problem. There'd be quite a number of things to see around the area if the time was right for it, and overall she couldn't think of a more prime location for the shrine.

As she did, she turned to Félicie to answer her question. "I think you'll find it a unique cultural immersion experience," she commented. "The shrine on the island certainly fulfills its purpose quite well, but truthfully nothing speaks out history, culture and heritage like a shrine in the beating heart of ancient, cultural Japan." She was more than happy to talk culture and tradition as if she were a tour guide, which perhaps could be owed to her love for the subject and her upbringing as a cultured lady in such historically significant cities as London or Kamakura.
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Chizu
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Knight Radiant
"I'm sure we'll have plenty of time for that," Rei said in response to Hibiki, already making a mental note to be sure to leave time for souvenir shopping in. It seemed like an odd thing to think about when he was still wondering what his grandfather wanted, but supernatural business was usually conducted at night. Depending on how long they stayed here, they would have time to do other things during the day.

He turned towards Felicie and Edie as they spoke about the shrine, smiling. "Our shrine isn't that big as far as these things go, but it is old. My family has been in this area for a long time." Truth be told, the actual shrine was a little bit bigger than the portion that was open to the public, built to house significantly more family members than Rei and his grandfather, as well as artifacts and long-term visitors. There were sections of the shrine that had gone unused for years given their family's much smaller size, but he didn't mention that to them. It was likely that they would pick up on that soon enough anyway, and he knew that the unused sections were a sore spot for his grandfather. Instead, he said, "We might be able to make time to visit some of the larger shrines as well, depending on how things go."

He sipped at the coffee, glancing down at his phone one more time as the train moved forward. It wouldn't be too long now until they arrived...



A bus ride later found the four of them standing outside a pair of torii gates that flanked a set of stone steps, leading up into the mountainside. The characters on the sign that hung near the gate marked it as Yasukage Shrine. Rei paused at the entrance with his bag in his hand, staring up at the familiar set of steps. He hesitated. It was a slight hesitation, but those in the group who were looking for it might have noticed it.

Home.

He should have felt happy to be here, relieved. Seeing the shrine's gates should have felt like home to him. He wondered what it said about him that it didn't. Instead, he felt conflicted. Worried. He blamed it on the situation, but the conversation he had had at the farmer's market with Tarouta still weighed on his mind.

"You said you were born in a shrine, so I suppose you're expected to inherit...?"

Rei took a deep breath, putting the thought from his mind. He stepped forward and past the gates, feeling the barrier that protected the shrine as a brief moment of resistance, like walking into something elastic, before it parted enough to allow him through. Those others in the group who had any sort of magical aptitude would likely notice it, although to anyone else, it would just feel like walking through air. On the other side of the barrier, Rei paused, looking back at the others. He gave them an apologetic smile.

"It looks like a longer climb than it is," he said. "We'll be there soon."

Posted Image

As Rei spoke to them, a figure materialized further up the staircase, that of a young masked woman in traditional clothing. She appeared as if out of thin air, accompanied by a gust of wind. As her feet landed on the steps, she sank into a bow.

"Welcome home, Rei-sama," she said, her voice solemn. "Your grandfather is expecting you."

Despite her sudden appearance, Rei didn't seem too surprised to see her there. Instead, he turned, nodding at her. "Thank you, Hiiragi," he said. "I'll be there as soon as I can." Rei turned back to the others. "Hiiragi is a shrine familiar," he said. "She guards the shrine and helps tend to the grounds. Sorry if that startled you. She doesn't appear to ordinary visitors." To be honest, he was a little embarrassed by the deference Hiiragi had displayed, but he tried not to let it show.
Edited by Chizu, Sep 1 2017, 01:03 AM.
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Nickle
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The Original Ni-san
A determined look furrowed the girl's brow, her turquoise eyes looking on with determination at the shrine on the slope above her. Her right hand adjusted the rucksack that was slung over her shoulder while her left hand remained fixed to her hip as she continued to stare up at the Yasukage Shrine. This is the place right? It had to be. There was nothing else out here.

Hinata was already feeling a certain sense of grim distaste for being out in the wilderness on her own in a place that was for all intents and purposes, a place for spirits of all kinds to be drawn to. Granted it was a step up from the mysterious, forested graveyard she had found herself some time ago, but that did not change the fact that it was unsettling. She reached into her left pocket and pulled out the piece of paper that had the crudely drawn and written instructions on how to get to the shrine.

Hinata had heard about Kyoto's famed exorcist families and how many of them had taken up residence and set up a more commercialized business practice for themselves within the city. It had seemed like a long shot at first, but she was desperate and was hoping to try anything to deal with the problem that had, in every sense of the word, affixed itself to her. She stared at the wolf emblazoned ring on her finger and felt the weight of the silver pendant around her neck. Both items intertwined with her now due to her...problem.

Her brow furrowed further as she endeavored to double check the directions she had been given and praying she had come to the right place. If it was the wrong place there would be hell to pay to the second-rate exorcist who had given her the directions. Hinata had already been in Kyoto for just over a day now, looping her way through the city to try and find someone who could help her with a half-decent exorcism. She had heard of at least one or two families who were high up on the list, being renowned for handling spirits and dealing with exorcism.

Unfortunately they were rather hard to get through to, especially when you were a 16 year old girl in green sneakers, dungarees and a t-shirt. Cute was not effective in these circumstances. Hinata had had to settle for what she could get, but as supportive as she was of the more readily available exorcists in Kyoto, she had now begun to suspect half of them were fakes and were just trying to make quick cash.

One of them however, seemed genuine enough, actually admitting that he was not able to help her with her problem. Though he knew of someone just outside the city that could. Thus leading her to the Yasukage Shrine.

-------------------------------------------------

It was starting to get late in the afternoon and the sun was starting to show signs that the day may soon come to a close. Hinata sat somewhat demurely, but not entirely, looking down at the entrance gate down below. She had briefly met the shrine master, but had been asked to wait patiently here in the shrine while he attended to some new arrivals.

She tilted her head a she looked at the small commotion outside through the low window. Touching her index finger to her cheek, she let her thoughts be spoken, "Wonder who they are?"

"..."
Edited by Nickle, Aug 30 2017, 05:05 AM.
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Kyrielite
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コンセントにチンコ突っ込んでしびれ死ぬといいわ!
If she noticed the hesitation, she certainly didn't say anything. When it came down to it, the idol knew when to keep her mouth shut. It was only when she was trying to get a rise out of people or otherwise moving a conversation that she really spoke all that freely.

Still, it was interesting being in an old shrine. And more than that, an old shrine with an actively serving family.

It was quite a rare chance to work with one, much less see one. It would doubtless be interesting, though she wondered how much of the experience she would actually be able to share with people.

As they went up the steps, the guardian's appearance was... less than startling. She'd made too many entrances of the sort to be surprised when someone else used them.

"Thank you for your service, please pardon us for the intrusion." she said formally, bowing in a show of respect.
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Kayo
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The steps to the shrine loomed above them like something out of an anime. Félicie guessed anime got it right. Go Japan. She never figured she'd be in awe over a set of stairs.

As she waited for Rei to steel himself for the visit, she leaned over to whisper to Edie. "You were right..." she said, "I'm definitely impressed." Eventually, Rei started moving, making something up about the long climb. Félicie was a tad curious about his reluctance, but ultimately it was Rei's problem to deal with and if he didn't tell her about it then it wasn't her place to pry.

The barrier indicated that she should be prepared for magic (or whatever they called it here because it certainly didn't feel like Western magic), so Félicie wasn't too surprised when a pretty youkai materialized in front of them. Again, the familiar, Hiiragi, gave of a different vibe than Rei's own summons. If she was being honest, Rei felt like a completely different pattern in the magical tapestry of the shrine.

Félicie shivered, blocking out the sensation of magic. Her magical detection abilities were mediocre at best (thanks, Mom) but the dissonance was so sharp that it was impossible to miss. It made her uncomfortable.

She did her best to hide it as Rei turned to apologize, instead whistling low. "Wow, senpai," she said as Hiiragi disappeared, "I didn't know you were this important." Félicie gave him a soft look, trying to show him that she was just teasing him to bring the mood up. The boy was probably going through a lot with this mysterious call home, but she wasn't going to let him sit in his own head.
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bonniecanuck
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Bonnie Bushi
Kyoto was home to many famous names. Fushimi-Inari Taisha. Shimogamo. Yasaki. Nonomiya. Hirano. Kinkaku. Ginkaku. Heian. All these shrines and temples were of a great historic, cultural or even aesthetic significance to the city as the former capital of a Japan long gone in the past. However, keeping just those names in mind was to ignore the fact that throughout the city there were still many smaller, lesser-known places with their own stories that sometimes were just as rich, if not moreso, than the tourist traps.

Such was a thought Edie kept in mind while ascending the steps to the Yasukage Shrine. It was quite a spectacular spot given the view that afforded the group a great sight of much of the ward and beyond that the old city. Hard to believe that more people didn't consider paying a visit there, but then again, the exorcists definitely would have quite a secret to protect that would be quite exclusionary to outsiders.

The magic barrier was not palpable to her, so she had no qualms with stopping, though she could see that Félicie jolted slightly, so by that she could infer that the presence had been detectable to her, and thus they were safe. That was good.

She stopped only when the familiar materialised before the group. Knowing Rei's capacity for working with familiars like Carbuncle, she figured that she should expect such a thing, but the guardian's appearance still startled her a bit because of the suddenness with which it happened.

"It is a pleasure to meet you," she said, bowing with Hibiki in courtesy and respect. "We are thankful for the hospitality of the Yasukage Shrine."
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Chizu
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Knight Radiant
Posted Image

A young woman materialized next to Hinata, brown-haired where Hiiragi was blond, and with a different sort of mask covering her face, but dressed in similar traditional clothes. She had a tray in her hands, carrying a cup of steaming tea. Hinata would have been introduced to her earlier as Tsubame, the second of the two spirits that guarded the Yasukage Shrine.

"Would you like some tea while you wait, Hinata-san?" she offered. "The master will be with you shortly."



Hiiragi bowed towards the three girls, acknowledging Edie and Hibiki's greetings. "It's no trouble at all," she said. "Thank you for looking after the young master." A slight flush colored Rei's cheeks at that term of address, but he said nothing to correct her, standing awkwardly as Hiiragi turned and started walking back up the steps. When she had gone a few steps ahead of him, he turned to Felicie, speaking in a low voice.

"I'm honestly not that important," he said, giving her a tired smile. "I'm just the last of an old family, and Hiiragi and Tsubame, the other guardian, have been looking out for us for a long time. Please don't worry about it." He knew that she was mostly joking, but the last thing he wanted was for his friends to think any differently of him. But there wasn't much time to dally. Hiiragi had mentioned that his grandfather was waiting.

He started climbing the stairs, following her.

As Rei had stated at the bottom, it wasn't as long a climb as it looked. The stairs leveled off into a small courtyard, where the visitor's section of the shrine was visible. The visitor's section was small, and not as grand as some of the other, more famous shrines in Kyoto, but the Yasukage Shrine had been built for privacy, and as such, the grounds had an isolated air, ringed by a wall with trees growing around it to shelter them from prying eyes. Standing in the courtyard, one could almost imagine that they were on an isolated mountainside somewhere, and not within convenient commuting distance of one of the major cities of Japan.

Rei stopped at the purification fountain just inside the courtyard, taking the time to scoop up water with a wooden ladle, washing his hands and the inside of his mouth. To Felicie, who might not have been as familiar with the ritual of visiting a Shinto shrine as the others, he said, "It's a cleansing ritual before entering Shinto shrines. Pick up the ladle with your right hand, then pour it into your left hand. Wash your left hand and do the same thing for your right. Do that over the ground, so that you don't pour any water back into the temizuya. Then do the same with your mouth and return the ladle. Don't worry too much about it."

Felicie wasn't the first foreigner that had visited the shrine and likely wouldn't be the last, and Rei wasn't as strict about that sort of thing as his grandfather was. Once they were finished, he approached the main building, where Hiiragi was waiting for them.

Rei paused, studying the building. From the outside, he could see a girl through the window, one being tended to by Tsubame. The shrine did get visitors, but for one to be greeted by the guardian spirits suggested that she was here on exorcism business and not just to pray. He glanced at Hiiragi. "Do we have a visitor?"

"A young woman from Osaka, dealing with some sort of possession," Hiiragi said. "The timing is unfortunate."

"If Grandfather needs to tend to her, I can wait," Rei said. "I'll take the others inside, and..."

"That won't be necessary," said a voice, interrupting him.

Rei turned and saw an old man dressed in traditional clothing, this time consisting of a white gi and dark blue hakama, coming around the side of the building. His hair was whitened with age, and he used a walking stick, but there was an air of power and confidence around him that had only increased with time. Rei went tense for half a second before turning towards him.

"Grandfather," he said, bowing. "I came as soon as I could. These are my friends from school: Akechi Hibiki, Edie Masuda Sheridan, and Felicie Leroux."

Rei's grandfather looked over the girls solemnly for a moment, then his expression softened, and he inclined his head towards them in a bow. "Thank you for looking after my idiot grandson," he said. "Hiiragi will show you into the house. Put your things away, and then we can talk about business."

Hiiragi bowed in response. "Right this way," she said, motioning for Felicie, Hibiki, and Edie to follow her. Rei turned to watch them go.

As the girls left, Rei's grandfather gave him a sly smile. "Are there no boys in that school of yours?" he asked. "What sort of education are you getting all the way in Miyazaki?"

"Grandfather!" Rei said, shocked.

The old priest laughed, shaking his head. He placed a hand on Rei's shoulder, his expression growing solemn.

"Put your things away," he said. "We have a lot to talk about."
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Kyrielite
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コンセントにチンコ突っ込んでしびれ死ぬといいわ!
It was familiar manners at least. One couldn't be raised Japanese and not know at least the basic manners of a shrine visit.

Clean your hands. Rinse your mouth - but never pour directly into your mouth. Clean the ladle. Return carefully.

If you had time, or it was particularly impressive, admire the architecture of the pavilion or the chozubachi. Lowering her bag, Hibiki went through the motions with practiced care, finishing in time for introductions.

"Ah yes, we will please be under your care." she said, bowing after her name was called.

"So your name is Hiiragi-san..." she said, as she followed behind the figure.
Edited by Kyrielite, Sep 2 2017, 07:19 AM.
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Nickle
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The Original Ni-san
Hinata jumped slightly where she sat when she heard Tsubame. She turned to face the familar and nodded her head vervently, "Y-Yes please. That would be lovely, thank you Tsubame-san." Hinata looked out of the window again, her heart slightly heavy in the need of having to wait, but glad that it was hopefully something the shrine's master could resolve. She watched a the group was greeted by a spirit who seemed to almost be Tsubame's twin, barring a few small differences.

Who were they? Did they come for an exorcism like herself? Hinata noticed the boy in the group spot her in the window. She didn't move, not immediately, before curiosity got the better of her. Hinata raised herself up and walked out of the room she had been asked to wait and towards the entrance of the room she had been asked to wait in, where at that very moment Rei and his friends were being greeted by his grandfather.

Hinata did not make her presence apparent at first, but slowly showed move of herself in the doorway, her hand behind her back as she listened in casually a they others entered the house. She then turned to Tsubame, "So, that's his grandson then is it? Will he be needed for the ritual?"

"..!"
Edited by Nickle, Sep 6 2017, 02:17 AM.
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Kayo
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Félicie carefully followed Rei's instructions at the purification fountain, observing the others where she felt like she was lost. It was a bit strange to her, but not unpleasant. She felt that it added to the atmosphere of the shrine as a clean place. It was like taking your shoes off before you entered a house. She made a mental note to look up the significance of the practice when they had some time to themselves. Maybe she'd just ask Edie about it.

When Rei's grandfather appeared, Félicie took a cue from Hibiki and bowed in greeting. The man seemed to command respect. Not in a brash, in-your-face sort of way, but in the way that elders with many stories to tell had. She'd seen the way Rei tensed when he called him, but the soft look he gave the boy led her to believe that he was definitely stern but far from unkind.

And, from his passing comment as they left, a bit of a jokester too.
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bonniecanuck
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Bonnie Bushi
Edie smiled at Hiiragi's welcome as they climbed the stairs. Having gotten over the abruptness of the familiar's materialisation, his warm salutations gave her cause to relax and keep trudging up the stairs.

Soon they had reached the courtyard, and stepping back, she took the time to admire the place, looking up and down at the various features. It definitely seemed very homely and peaceful, quite unlike the more famous ones which unfortunately had lost a lot of their colour and flair due to incessant tourist crowding-out of the area.

She faced the chozuya to purify herself. Pick up the ladle in the right hand. Scoop some water up from the fountain and pour it onto the left hand. Switch hands and do likewise for the right hand. Then cup hands and pour some water into it, rinse mouth in the water. Edie followed the ritual cleansing slowly and respectfully. It wasn't like she didn't know how to do it, but the formality and decorum of adhering to tradition ensured that she kept a more than tasteful pace and solemnity to the occasion. It was all too familiar to her that by this point that she could memorise the pace at which she should do it, but she didn't mind it at all.

Stepping back, she glanced at Félicie. She had noticed that the French girl had been slower to the draw and had been glancing at the others to make sure she was doing the steps correctly. "You did it well," she said as she leaned in closer to whisper the compliment in her ear.

Straightening herself once again, Edie found herself looking at Rei's grandfather. She appraised his figure. He commanded an aura of respectability and formality that few, if anybody, could match as far as she personally knew. It only felt right for her to defer the respect he deserved for his seniority and position, so just as Hibiki and Félicie bowed, so too did she.

She picked up her duffel bag and followed Hiiragi to their lodgings. She pulled in close opposite to the side Hibiki was on to engage in conversation. And as they walked, she couldn't help but raise an eyebrow at the last teasing question the old monk gave. She couldn't help but roll her eyes at that.
Edited by bonniecanuck, Sep 13 2017, 01:30 PM.
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Chizu
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Knight Radiant
"That is correct," Hiiragi said in response to Hibiki, leading the three girls around the back of the shrine towards the entrance to the living quarters. "Together with Tsubame, the other guardian of this shrine, we have served the Yasukage family for over five hundred years now. Please don't hesitate to ask either of us any questions for the duration of your stay."

She led them past a still pond and into the living quarters. The space inside maintained the same traditional architecture as the rest of the shrine, but with more modern conveniences visible, although most of the technology seemed old or dated, relics from a decade ago that hadn't yet been replaced. It was still a comfortable, peaceful place, obviously a place where people lived, although it was possible that someone used to a high level of technology...or high-speed internet, might find it stifling. The familiar led them down a hallway, stopping in front of two sliding doors.

"These are the guest rooms," she said, opening the doors to show one room with two futons neatly folded against the wall, and another room that already showed signs of being occupied. "We currently have a guest in residence. If the three of you would prefer, you can share one room, or one of you can share a room with her. We can accommodate either option."


Tsubame crouched down beside the low table, dutifully pouring Hinata another cup of steaming tea. "Rei-sama is not a full-fledged exorcist, although he has assisted in rituals before," she said. "He was called here to deal with another matter."

The familiar didn't elaborate, setting the cup on the table with a polite bow. Hinata would have some time to ask her more questions, but before too much time passed, the pair in the courtyard would make their way up into the shrine proper. Rei followed his grandfather in, pausing in the doorway as he studied Hinata. His grandfather didn't stop walking, keeping up a brisk pace as he waved them towards the room where he had asked Hinata to wait earlier.

Rei paused, eyes on Hinata like he wanted to ask her a question, but he didn't linger for too long, following his grandfather into the room. Tsubame appeared at his side, holding a hand out for his bag, and he offered it to her without a word, letting her take it off to his rooms as he faced his grandfather and Hinata.

Once they were all situated, his grandfather turned to address them."Rei, this is Seika Hinata, from Osaka. Hinata-san, this is my grandson, Rei. As you might have surmised, this is a somewhat busy time for the shrine. Rei is here to assist me with another difficulty, but it would be valuable for him to be present at this consultation, if you have no objections." He paused, allowing Hinata to voice her objections if she had any."I understand that you believe yourself to be the victim of possession," he said, after the pause. "What makes you think so, and when did this incident begin? Tell me the full story--even if it doesn't seem important, the smallest details can have meaning in cases like this."
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Kyrielite
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コンセントにチンコ突っ込んでしびれ死ぬといいわ!
"I see. So you'll be working with Rei-kun when he inherits this place as well." she smiled.

It was an interesting place at least. And while less modern, it was definitely more relaxing than the usual breakneck that much of the rest of the country suffered from. It was odd, how the country could so rapidly embrace modernity, and yet cling to the past as fervently as it did.

Hibiki set her bag down, and took off her shoes as she stepped into the prepared getta.

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"Whichever one is more convenient for you. I don't mind either." she assured her host.
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