Yawn."Masami." I hear my sister knock on the door once more. "Come on! Get out of bed.""A little later." I feel my arms stretch above my head. "I'm still tired." The door to my room swings open at that remark. In the doorway, a blonde specter looms. Slowly, she approaches my bed with a series of ominous footsteps."Masami." I can almost feel her shadow blocking the light from the window. "You need to wake up, and eat." "I'll just skip breakfast." I turn my head to face her stern glance. "Just a few more minutes." "Masami." She states, once again. "'Breakfast' was the first time I tried to wake you up. It's now Lunch."This is Kaori, my closest sister. We usually wake up at the same time, but there's just something about today that makes me want to curl the blankets over myself and rest for another hour or so. Maybe it's the frost at the windows, or the cool air seeping in from the hallway, or the dim light from the cloudy day outside. All of it comes together in such a way as to make me think 'Sleep'."Is something happening, today?" I start to wonder if maybe there is some kind of emergency that requires my attention."Yes, today is Christmas and it only happens once a year." Kaori gently sits on the edge of the bed. "Everyone else is already playing outside, and I want to go outside, too. So let's get up, and get dressed." >Five more minutes, Kaori.>Wake up, and dress yourself. >Okay, okay. Just, give me a second.>Turn over in bed and try to fall asleep right in front of her.>Other?
Hello again! Yes, this is a few days after Christmas! I hope that's not a problem for anyone.>What is Card Priestess Masami?Card Priestess Masami is a quest that ran from 2014-2016. I asked on twitter if we wanted a Christmas thread, and everyone said yes! You can read the archives, here:http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Card%20Priestess%20Quest>What kind of quest is it? It's a light magical girl quest played completely straight. I think the tags in the archive say it best.>How many threads will this Christmas Special be? Just this one. >Where can I find quick information on any of these characters?The pastebin page!http://pastebin.com/E9ZihSBV>Where can I find your twitter account? http://twitter.com/QM_CardHeartEveryone, enjoy the thread and be sure to post any questions you may have!
>>3142356>Five more minutes, Kaori.A Christmas special? how exciting! shame I can't remember a single thing about this quest.
>>3142356>Five more minutes, Kaori.
>>3142384That's okay, if you have any questions about anything; feel free to ask!
>>3142356>Okay, okay. Just, give me a second.
>>3142365>Okay, okay. Just, give me a second.Wow, this is neat.
"Five more minutes, Kaori." I turn over, and pull the covers closer. "You had 'five more minutes' an hour ago." She sighs."..Okay, okay." I can feel the dread of having to leave these soft, comfortable blankets. "Just, give me a second." I can hear Kaori slowly pace away from the bed. With a click, she closes the door behind her."It better be 'a second'." I hear her mumble just as the door shuts.The warm and soft blankets coil around me. The relaxing warmth spreads from the tips of my toes, up through my feet, my legs, my body. I feel like gelatin. Like I could just melt into the bed, and stay here forever.If it weren't for an almost strange pulsing in my head, then I would feel on top of the world. "Masami." I hear Kaori at the door again, "It's been five minutes." I sigh into the pillow. Of course I'm not going to get much rest with the stern sister right at my door. I slowly sit upright, and pull the pops and creaks out of my arms.I am Masami Itsukuma. I'm 13 years old, but this is my second Christmas ever. Christmas was very much a fun and energetic time last year, but I'm just not feeling it for some odd reason this year. Maybe it's because I stayed up a tad bit late last night after everyone had gone to bed. Then I may have been using some magic cards to peek at presents under the tree.But don't tell Mom I did that.I stand up, and do my usual morning routine. My pajama top flips off onto the bed, and-Wow, I have some kind of strange red blush on my chest. I glance in the mirror, and the same blush exists on my face. I put that aside and instead turn to the doorway. On this doorway, my sister and I measure each other's height. The pencil is easily snatched off the desk, and I press my back up against the wall. It slides against the doorframe and-Oh! I've grown another centimeter! I'm going to catch up to Aiko in no time. She's shot up like a weed to the point where she has to look down on me and my sister to talk to me. Embarrassing, especially considering that we're in the same class.I try to pin my hair up where it's not spilling down my back. That's another thing that has started to grow almost uncontrollably, as well. I'm not used to getting a haircut, so it's just been something that has been slowly getting longer and longer.I search around in my drawer for a warm T-shirt, and a pair of stockings. It goes nicely with the wool skirt I got for Christmas last year. However, I'm still a little worried about how blush most of my skin appears to be. Kaori opens the door at just the right moment, as I'm tying a ribbon in my hair."Oh, good. I was worried that I would have to dress you." She sighs."What's the big rush?" I button the last button on my outfit, and follow her into the hallway."Aside from the fact you've slept half of Christmas away?" Kaori seems a little distressed by that, but I don't see the big deal. >Cont.
I walk out into the living room, and spot Mom in the kitchen. "Merry Christmas, Mom!" I smile. She immediately turns with a massive smile on her face."Merry Christmas, sleepyhead. How are yo-"She pauses, and then glances at me. "Mom?" Mom quietly walks across the living room, and has an expression of sheer concern on her face. Her had reaches up, and presses against my head. "Mom, what's wrong?" "Masami, you have a fever. Do you have a cold?" >A What? >Try to downplay it. >Uh, I guess?>Ask Kaori to help bail you out of this.>Other?
>>3142615>She's shot up like a weed to the point where she has to look down on me and my sister to talk to meBoy, I'm rusty. It's going to be another one of these threads, it seems.
>>3142620>A What?>Try to downplay it.
"A what?" I blink, and touch my face. The cool touch almost gives relief to the dull pain."A cold, Masami." Kaori chimes in. "You know, it's like what Julie got a few months ago." OH! Oh, oh no, that's not good! Julie was bedridden for almost an entire day! I can't have that happen on Christmas!"Mom, how can that be." I reach up and nervously pull her hand from my forehead. "How could I catch a cold?" "Same way Julie caught it, by staying up late." Kaori, you're not helping! Suddenly, I get an idea!"..I'll just get Haruko to-" "No." Mom interjects into my brilliant plan to cure myself of the cold, "I don't want to risk you giving it to her. Let's have some tea and take your temperature."Reluctantly, I follow Mom into the living room, and have a seat at the couch. I know where this is going. She's going to take me into the living room, feed me tea and a sandwich, and then declare that I can't leave the house for the whole day.That can't happen.I need to find some way to duck out on Mom. Maybe..Mom interrupts your train of thought by bringing a plate full of teacups. She pours some of her amazing green tea into three tiny teacups.However, instead of handing me one of the cups, she instead hands me a dull-grey plastic stick."Put this thermometer under your arm, Masami." She then hands me one of the porcelain teacups. "Wait until it beeps, and then set it down."She then returns to the kitchen, presumably to deliver what she has made for lunch.Which leaves me staring at the tiny plastic stick that's going to determine how my Christmas goes.>Take your temperature like she instructed. You can argue her down after it's done.>Beg Kaori to take the temperature for you. >Try timing it to trick the thermometer into thinking that you're perfectly fine (Requires a roll)>Other?
Rolled 15 (1d100)>>3142943>Try timing it to trick the thermometer into thinking that you're perfectly fine You will never ruining my Christmas grinch
>>3142943>Take your temperature like she instructed. You can argue her down after it's done.
I grumble, and stick the implement under my arm. There's a sharp uncomfortable feeling as the coolness of the thermometer meets the blush warmth of my skin.Kaori over looks over me, with worry."Masami, maybe I was wrong. Maybe you should go back to bed.""No, no. I'm fine." I'm not going to let Mom or Kaori ruin your Christmas. Beep.I carefully examine the thermometer, and read 38 degrees Celsius on its tiny digital display."You have a fever." Kaori immediately remarks."Q-quiet! It's not that bad!" I feel flustered, in more ways than one. "A few minutes ago, you didn't want me to wake you up at all. Now you're arguing that you need to be up." Kaori presses her hand against my head. Even that feels cool to the touch compared to the red blush spreading across my skin."I just don't want my Christmas spent in bed. It was fine for Julie, because she got to stay home from School." "This is about your health, sis." "I feel fine!" You pout. Mom emerges from the kitchen with plates in both hands. Sandwiches with apple slices on them. She's very predictable on what she makes for Lunch."Let me see, Masami." She sets the plates down, and then picks up the thermometer. "Mm, you have a fever.""It's a not a bad one." I try to play it off as not being that big of a deal. "I'm feeling fine, I promise." "I think you should stay indoors today." Mom crosses her arms. "No, hold on Mom." Kaori suddenly speaks up, "This is Christmas, and we have the student council meeting at school anyway." Mom immediately blinks, "Oh, oh right I forgot about that. The Christmas meeting."Which is good that Kaori remembered, because I had completely forgot."-So I think she should at least show up and say hello. I'm going to be with her, so there's no need to worry about her collapsing or anything." Kaori smiles, "Is that okay, Mom?" Kaori, I really owe you for this.We eat in relative silence, and I manage to gulp almost half of the teapot down. Her green tea is simply amazing.Mom breaks the silence after I finish the last slice of apple on my plate."I suppose that's okay, but both of you take your phones and call me if anything happens, okay?" "Okay!" I smile, maybe Christmas won't be ruined, after all."Definitely. Leave it to me." Kaori stuffs an apple slice in her mouth.>Cont.
I collect my phone from my room, and then wave goodbye to Mom as Kaori and I leave. We step out into the yard, but then Kaori grabs my attention. "Masami, you have to take really good care of yourself today, okay?" She seems serious. "Sure, sure." I wave off her concerns, "Thanks for getting me out of the house. Why did you do that?""Because I knew you had forgot about the christmas party at school, and also-"There's a whizzing sound through the air. It sounds rather familiar to me. Like a.. ball of-WHACK! You recoil at the hit, and then spin on your heels to face none other than."MASAMI!" It's that stupid Julie! "Got you!" >Ready for her snowball-related demise.>No, stay calm, getting angry might make you more sick.>Get flustered and pout, but don't actually do anything. >Inform her that you're sick and you're not in the mood.>I'm telling Mom!>Other?
>You recoil at the hit, and then spin on your heels to face none other than.First POV error of the thread! Feels like a true CPM experience, now.
>>3143666>Get flustered and pout, but don't actually do anything.>Inform her that you're sick and you're not in the mood.
>>3143666>Get flustered and pout, but don't actually do anything. >Cry a little.
My cheeks puff up, and my already-reddened face finds a way to get redder."Juliee!" I can feel a small tear reach the corner of my eye.Julie responds with her typical 'Oh no I took it too far' look. The one that lets her know that someone is about to go tattle to an adult and get her in actual trouble."Eek! Sorry Masami!" She immediately bounds across the lawn to rush to your aid now that she feels that she could get in trouble. Typical Julie behavior."D-did it get in your eye? In your ear? Don't tell Mom, please!" Julie pleads her case in the only way she knows how."Masami is fine." Kaori interjects, robbing me of my ability to guilt-trip Julie. "She's just running a little fever. So we're going to go straight to the Christmas party before she gets any worse, and we'll be leaving it early.""Aw, is it like what I had?" Julie's claim to fame is that she was probably the first person in my family to catch a human illness. "No! No, it's not that bad." I'm trying to maintain my composure and not reveal any weakness. "I feel fine, really." "You don't feel that constant pressure on your head?" Julie blinks, "That's what I remember about when I was sick. Like someone was pressing their thumbs into my forehead.""Oh, I don't feel anything like that." "-Best not to think about it." Kaori interrupts your train of thought, "Let's get going."Just before we leave, she walks up to the doghouse and peers inside."Oracle, do you want to go with us to the Christmas party?" Oracle peers outward at Kaori without moving an inch. Her snow-white coat almost makes her blend in with the rest of the yard.At the same time, Oracle has managed to create a nest inside of her doghouse. The wool bedding wraps under her to form a bowl which she comfortably rests inside of. I can almost compare it to the comfort of my own bed this morning.Kaori asks if the dog would like to leave her bed and come out into the cold one more time, but I already know the dog's answer.That dog may be the smartest person here. We leave Oracle in her bed, and start down the sidewalk. It's been thankfully salted, so no slipping or sliding for us today. "So, Masami, did you buy anything for anyone you like?" Julie looks at you with a smile."Oh! I got cards for everyone, some new notebooks for Maeda. Aiko got som-""No, no. Masami. I mean like, Chocolates, or Mistletoe, for, you know. Someone you like!" Julie is pressing this further.You simply glance back at her with a blink. "Someone I like?" You repeat the question back to her like it's an alien language."Boys, Masami. Did you buy something for a boy you like?" Julie seems exasperated trying to explain that to you.Somehow, you can feel Kaori shoot an icy dagger from her eyes, straight at Julie.>Did you?>No, why would I do that?>Uhh, should I have? >Maybe I did, for someone (Lie)>..What boy do you think I like?>Other?
>More POV errorsThat's a sign that it's time for me to retire for the night. Keep posting and we'll continue in the morning!
>>3144179>Panic>..What boy do you think I like?
>>3144179>Panic>Maybe I did, for someone (Lie)>Did you?
>>3144179>Panic>Did you?>..What boy do you think I like?
>>3142356>Card Priestess Masami QuestWell this is a blast from the past.
..What?!Why would Julie ask me such a question?I feel myself gulp at the realization at what she's insinuating. I hadn't even thought of it in that context.Oh no, what if one of my gifts are taken that way? I did buy a card for Ryouta, and a pair of sunglasses for Ken. What if they interpret that as being-"Masami." Kaori puts her hand on my shoulder, "Stop panicking, and Julie; don't ask such private questions." "What?" She seems oblivious, "What's so private about that? I'm just asking what boys she likes." "That's the private part!" Kaori glares those same daggers at her, once more. "You're not supposed to just ask something like that, okay?" "What boy do you think I like?" I find this more confusing than anything. I'm fairly certain that I don't feel that way about anyone in particular."I don't know, that's why I was asking. Maybe Ryouta?" "I.. don't think so." I don't like where this line of questioning is going."How about Ken'ichi?" "No. He makes me mad and I think he does it on purpose.""I dunno, isn't that supposed to be charming?""Did you buy anything for a boy you like?" I try to turn this back around on Julie. "Well, no, but you're both older. So that's something that you should be thinking about, right?" "Not really." I blink."I don't think we're ready for that just yet." Kaori answers for herself in a way that lets her avoid the question. "Oh, I guess you're both still children, then." Julie concludes, "I guess it's fine if you haven't grown up emotionally yet. Anyway, I'll just go ask Aiko!" Julie bounds off ahead of the two of you. Kaori sighs, and then turns to me."Masami, put down the snowball." "But-" I knead the powdery snow in my hand, packing it into a consistent projectile to smack Julie with."No, put it down. No Snowball fights when you're sick." I listen to Kaori, and drop it to the ground, In the back of my mind, I make a mental note to repay Julie later. >Cont.
We arrive at school, and immediately head into the gym, where they're having the party. Kaori was insistent that she get me out of the cold. I feel fine, however. I don't know what her problem is."Masami! Kaori! Merry Christmas!" We're greeted just as we come through the door by Maeda. She's wearing a beautiful santa outfit that honestly makes me a little jealous. It's no doubt an ensemble that she made by hand. She's very good at that.With her usual fervor, she grabs both of us into a hug."Careful Maeda." Kaori gives her a stern warning. "Masami is a little under the weather." "Oh! oh, are you sick?" Maeda pulls away, and presses her hand against my head. "I feel fine." I brush off her concerns, "How is your Christmas so far?" "It's been great!" Maeda is practically overflowing with energy, "It's been a great turnout! I got your presents below the tree before anyone arrived, just like you asked." "Thanks, Maeda." "So, what are you going to be doing? Want to have some cake?" "No, no no." Kaori interrupts, "I'll get her some cake. Masami, just find a place to sit down while I do that. Don't go near any food." "Aw, okay." I huff, but I understand entirely why she's like that. "Ha! Sorry you're feeling under the weather. Do you want some medicine or anything?" Maeda is doing her even-bigger sister impression again.>No thanks, I'm fine.>Find a place to sit and just wait for Kaori to get you cake.>Are you going to take this party sitting down? Of course not. Go talk to people.>Other?
>>3145175>A little aspirin can't hurt, right?>Find a place to sit and just wait for Kaori to get you cake.
>>3145175>No thanks, I'm fine.>Find a place to sit and just wait for Kaori to get you cake.
"No thanks, I'm fine." "If you need anything, Masami. Just let me know!" Maeda notices someone else come through the door, none other than Ken'ichi himself. She runs off to greet him, and I walk over to one of the chairs to sit down and have a breath. It does feel like I could fall asleep right now. I can try to rest my eyes a bit, but if I try, I'm probably going to pass out."Hey." I hear a voice catch my attention. "Why are you looking so glum? It's Christmas, smile." Oh, it's Ryouta.>Don't tell me what to do>Go somewhere else.>Just reply with a simple 'ok'>Fall asleep.>Other?
Sorry about that short update, I had a slight interruption. We will be back on track shortly!
>>3145333>Just reply with a simple 'ok'>Fall asleep.
>>3145333>I'm a bit tired. happy new year
>>3145393Happy new year!Writing!
I keep my eyes locked onto Ryouta, and blink.At that same moment, I can feel a sort of knocking feeling on the inside of my eyes. It's hard to describe it other than feeling like rain washing over my senses."Ok." I reply, and decide to give in to my base urges for comfort. My head leans back onto the chair, and my eyes take a much needed break for several seconds."Masami?" Ryouta sounds slightly concerned, but there's no reason for him to be worried. I continue letting my eyes take a few minutes to get some coffee and face the world once more.--Slowly, my eyes start to open once more. For whatever reason, that blink felt like it lasted forever.Or, at least longer than a normal blink should.My eyes open to see Kaori looming over me with a very concerned expression on her face."Wh-" I sit up, and suddenly realize that I'm laying across a cot with a blanket draped across me. "Kaori? Where did Ryouta go?" This results in her grasping me into a hug."I'm so sorry Masami, I didn't realize you were that bad. I thought you were just going to look gloomy and then open presents. I didn't know you would just fall over like that." "Fall over?" Uh oh, it seems I was overestimating myself, there. "..How long was I out?" "About an hour, Masami.""A full hour?!" I nearly jolt straight out of the cot. "W-what about the presents? The food?! Have I slept the entire party away?" "Who cares about that? You collapsed in the middle of the gym, Masami." "I do! Did you open the presents yet?" "They're doing that right now. Why don't you just wait here and I'll go get yours?" >No, I'm going to go open them with everyone else.>Stay in bed, maybe she's right.>I'm fine, really. >My eyes just went on a break.>Other?
>>3146238>I'm fine, really.>My eyes just went on a break.
Happy new year, everyone! I look forward to another year of quests and fun with you.If things are going a bit slow for this thread, my apologies! It will pick up soon.
>>3146238>No, I'm going to go open them with everyone else.>I'm fine, really.>My eyes just went on a break.
>>3146238>Stay in bed, maybe she's right.>I'm fine, really. >My eyes just went on a break.
"No, no no." I push myself up, and swing my legs out of the cot. I'm not going to take this laying down. "I'm fine, really. I'm going to go open them with everyone else." "You are not fine." I'm immediately pushed back into the cot by Kaori. "You passed out and nearly fell over. Stay in bed." "My eyes just went on a break for a moment!" "Masami." Kaori crosses her arms."Okay, so they went on a break for an hour. Big deal! I'm still well enough to go open a few gifts." "I'm worried more about you giving this to other people, Masami." "I won't, it's fine." I can say that all I want, but I still feel a little dizziness as I hop straight out of the cot and start to make my way back into the gym.I almost knock my head against the doorway. Kaori immediately notices how uneasy I am on my feet and rushes to my side."Masami, just- just hold on to my shoulder." "I'm fiiiine." I can't tell if I keep repeating this to convince her, or convince myself.We slowly make our way across the gym, and back to the big plastic Christmas tree they put up. Several of my friends are already gathered around it, opening several of the packages tucked beneath."Masami?" Aiko stands up, and you're suddenly reminded that she's easily a head taller than you at this point, "Masami! What are you doing up? Shouldn't you be sleeping?!" "I'm fiiine." I repeat once more. "She's not fine, she's just really stubborn." Kaori remarks in my place. "She wants to open the gifts with you." "Masami, there's no reason to do that." Aiko grabs my other arm, and they both drag me toward the tree. "Why are you pushing yourself?" "Did you open my gift yet?" Only one thing comes to mind when I look at Aiko, right now."..You mean this?" She holds a small box, that's the box with her gift in it. I nod my head, and she smiles.She peels off the wrapper, and reveals a plain grey box underneath. Inside of the box reveals a pair of silver-painted earrings that I got for her."Thank you Masami." Aiko gives me a quick hug, much to Kaori's disapproval. "Merry Christmas, Aiko." I tug on Kaori's sleeve, "Okay, now I can go back to sleep." "Hey! Masami!" Ryouta gets my attention, "Thanks for the gift card!" "Yeah! Great!" I shout back at him, but this causes me to cough slightly."Masami, by the way, who gave you this box?"I blink."What box?" >Cont.
He tosses a red-wrapped gift toward me. It's not any bigger than the box Kaori just opened. I look at the label.It just says "To Masami" on it.I peel back the wrapper, and am treated to a red velvet case.If I didn't know any better; the case itself is in good enough condition to be the gift. I open it with a creak, and peer inside.Next to me, I can feel Kaori freeze up.It's a gold-colored necklace with a single white-colored jewel on the inset. The insignia in the middle seems oddly familiar.There's a finely-written note on the other side of the case.'Merry Christmas, Masami''From: Your secret admirer.''PS: Let's have dinner later this evening.'The tiny gem on the inset sparkles in the light. It's cradled by what appears to be a gold swan that curls into the really familiar looking emblem.I gawk at the no-doubt cubic zirconium crystal."Wow, that's a really convincing-""Masami." Kaori whispers in an almost paused breath. "Th- That's a real diamond!""Hey Masami, what was in it?" I hear Ryouta shout at me from across the other side of the tree.>Gasp and drop it.>Quickly hide it so no one else knows.>Immediately accuse him of giving you this.>'Nothing! It was nothing!'>Try not to faint a second time>Other?
>>3147105>Try not to faint a second time>Immediately accuse him of giving you this.
>>3147105>Try not to faint a second time>Quickly hide it so no one else knows.>Recall where we have seen the insignia before.
I feel dizzy.Not to mention, a little outraged.I feel myself about to topple over again, but Kaori catches my arm at the last second."Masami, you should go lay down." That jolts me back to my senses, and I feel the outrage start to burn once more."Ryouta!" I put my foot down, and shake off Kaori's grasp. "What is the meaning of THIS?! Who put you up to it?! What do you mean 'Dinner'?" "What?" He simply blinks at me. I suddenly realize that Ryouta is no where near as wealthy, cunning to make something like this and convincingly lie about it. No, this is something much more serious."Never mind." I say, sheepishly. My eyes avert from him as to not let him see the even bigger blush spreading across my face.I quickly close the box back up, and try as best as I can to hide next to me. I look toward Kaori, hoping to see her with some kind of suggestion or answer.However, she's just looking back at me with an equally strong blush. Worse than that, she actually looks angry! Why is she angry at me?! "C-can we talk in private?" "Let's." I follow Kaori back into the room with my cot. We both sit down, and pry the box back open."Secret admirer." I repeat the text one more time."SHH! SHH! D-don't say that too loud!" Kaori nearly jumps out of her seat."So, who is it?" "It's a boy, obviously." Kaori, your blushing face almost looks as red as mine. "A very disgusting one who thinks he can win you over with jewels and trinkets." "..But who? No one we know is particularly rich." "I don't know, maybe Ken stole it from somewhere? Ryouta may have saved his allowance for it. Who knows! Either ways, someone out there is guilty and we need to beat every single one until they confess."I grab Kaori's shoulder just before she stands up."Sis, no, we can't just interrogate everyone! Then they'll find out!" "..That's a good point. We need to keep this secret. Oh! Maybe you can bury it, and then just pretend it never happened.""Kaori, this stranger is coming to meet me for dinner!" "Okay, uh, maybe we can all go home, and you just hide in your room for a week?" "I don't think someone who bought me something inset with a diamond would just forget about me after a week!" Suddenly, I remember something odd about the necklace itself."Kaori, look at this emblem. Does it look familiar to you?" Kaori reaches into the box and gently examines the swan-shaped pattern."..It does look familiar, but I have no clue from where. Feels like.. something I've seen before at Fortune?"Suddenly, Kaori takes her phone out."What are you doing?" I'm starting to not like where this is going."I'm going to take a picture of it and send it to Mom. Maybe she's seen it before." "NO! You can't show this to Mom, then SHE'LL know!" "Masami, you're going to have to tell someone about this!" >No I don't!>..Okay, send it to Mom>L-let's get someone in our class, first.>Like Aiko>Or Maeda>..I think I need to lay down.>Other?
>>3148174>..Okay, send it to Mom
>>3147105>Other?>"Ryouta, Kaori's trying to convince me this is real!">Try to remember who we're having dinner with.>Recall where we have seen the insignia before.
>>3148206Damnit, too slow.
"..Okay." I frown, this is probably more embarrassing than telling Aiko about it. "Send it to Mom."I cup my face in my hands as she takes the fateful picture of the case and the necklace. In particular, the zoom-in on the gold emblem in the center. With a tap, Mom has it.It's not a hard puzzle to solve at this point. Gold necklace, diamond, Masami, Christmas party. Minus the date thing, Mom can still piece this together to figure out that I may or may not have gotten a boyfriend.And I don't even know his name! This is really bad! "Sent." Kaori sets the case back in my lap, "Now we wait." "What should I do in the meantime?" I gulp, "I don't want to be out there with a secret boyfriend stalking me." "DON'T CALL HIM THAT!" Kaori raises her voice, and looks around once more. "I mean, don't say that out loud!" "What do I call him?" "How about 'disgusting stalker', how does that sound?" "I don't even know who it is!" I'm starting to worry about Kaori's hostility."You know enough, that's for sure." Suddenly, Kaori's phone vibrates. It's from Mom.She picks up the phone, and reads the text message. "This is a family crest. Come see me." Family crest."What does that mean?" Kaori cocks her eyebrows, "'Family Crest'? Like it's from Fortune? That it's-"Kaori's eyes go wide, and I dread to think about what conclusions she has reached."Oh my god HE KNOWS!" Kaori turns to me, and starts shaking me by the shoulders. "This is someone who did research and found out about Fortune, the magic cards, maybe even our whole family! Oh no, this is a PROFESSIONAL stalker!" "Kaori, please, calm down." I pull at her hands, "All of our friends know about this, it could just be one of them." Kaori blinks, and then her eyes furrow. "You're right. I'm going to go beat up Ryouta right now!" "Why Ryouta?!" "Who else could it be?! It has to be one of the dumb boys we know! They're the only ones who would know anything about Fortune! They were the only ones who visited that place!" "Kaori, stop. Let's just call Mom, and see what the big deal is." "Fine, but you gotta do it." She hands me the phone. "I'm not going to be the one to tell her that you have a stalker boyfriend!" >I don't want to do that either, let's go talk to her face-to-face>Fine, call her.>..You're right, let's go interrogate Ryouta and Ken.>Other?
>>3149514>..You're right, let's go interrogate Ryouta and Ken.
>>3149514>I don't want to do that either, let's go talk to her face-to-face
"I don't want to do that either. Let's just go talk to her face-to-face." "What will that to?" I think about that question for a moment."It will make the explanation less embarrassing for one." I stand up, and we make our way back outside. I'm sure to hide the present deep in my coat so no one can question it. "Maeda, Aiko!" Kaori shouts across the room, "Masami doesn't feel well, so we're going home!" Maeda, in her typical Christmas spirit, bounds across the room in a second."Sorry you aren't feeling good. Here, I got you both a gift card!" She hands the small plastic cards to us, and continues to smile from ear to ear. "Thanks, Maeda." "Merry Christmas, Maeda."Immediately, she jumps forward and grabs us both into another hug."Maeda, please. You're going to catch whatever Masami has." "Pfft, it's worth it." She pulls away, and has the biggest smile on her face."Aiko is going to come by later, is that a problem?" Kaori crosses her arms, "Maybe, if Masami is actually sick.""Pfft, I doubt Aiko minds. Either ways-" Maeda rubs my head, rudely, "See you next year." "What?" I blink.Kaori just grumbles. Maeda simply giggles."Next year as in after new years, what did you think I meant?" "Oh." I must be more tired than I realized for not catching that right away."Either ways, I'll see you when the school year begins." "We'll be visiting you sooner than then." Kaori pulls on my arm, "If Masami isn't still recovering, I mean.""I said I'm fine." I try to be insistent. Maeda simply giggles.We part ways, and Kaori holds my arm up as we return home. The whole way my mind is filled with questions about who exactly would be interested enough in me to be a 'secret admirer'. It just doesn't make sense.I'm certain it's someone messing with me, but who would be messing with me to the point where they would buy something that I'm pretty sure costs hundreds of dollars. Where does the 'gotcha' come from?We continue walking down the icy path, the whole time Kaori is keeping me upright. Until, she stops. "Kaori?" I look over to her."..That emblem. It's on that car!" You look ahead on the path, and notice a car pulling away from the curb. A rather rich-looking vehicle with the emblem of a swan as a hood ornament. It's black with very shiny chrome on all of its frontward-facing pieces.Slowly, it makes a U-turn and starts to drive in the opposite direction. >Equip speed card and give chase! >Use another card! >Let it go, you can tell Mom about the stranger danger later.>Other?
>>3150532>Equip speed card and give chase!
>>3150532>Let it go, you can tell Mom about the stranger danger later.
>>3150532>Let it go, you can tell Mom about the stranger danger later.Unrelated to the vote, "black with very shiny chrome on all its forward-facing pieces" sounds pretty yakuza. I don't really think Masami would pick up on things like that, but would Kaori?
I'm about to give chase to the vehicle!But, then I stop myself. I have no idea who that is, or where they're even going. Plus, that would leave Kaori here alone, and I don't want to do that."Kaori, did you see anyone in that car?!" "No! Don't chase after them, they could be dangerous people!" She lurches forward, and grabs my hand. "Let's just go tell Mom about this. I'm getting really creeped out." "What, by that?" I think about Belle's card in my pocket. I could probably pick someone up and dumpster them pretty easily with that strength alone. "Yes! That car looked like something from a old gangster movie! That's not the kind of person you want to chase after, and not the kind of attention you want!" Kaori frowns. I can see that this is upsetting her far more than ti's upsetting me.I would probably just rip their car in half. Something I can totally do, you know!"I'm really getting weirded out, now." Kaori holds me close as we quickly continue down the sidewalk. What is usually a five to ten minute stroll from home to school goes by in a flash.Within an instant, we're standing in the snow-covered yard of our house."Geez, I wonder if they know where we live.""Kaori, calm down. You're panicking too much." "I don't think I'm panicking enough!" She grips my arm harder. "Do you not see the massive problem this could cause for our family!? Oh, I haven't even seen half of our sisters today." I open the front door, and am immediately greeted by my younger brother."Oh, hey Emillion." I look down at his shock-white hair."Hi Masami. I heard you're sick so don't breathe on me." "Emillion, I think we're being stalked by gangsters. So please, please be careful." Kaori seems more worried about this than she should be.Emillion only blinks, and turns the other way."This sounds like a Mom problem. I'll leave you to it." He states, lazily."W-!" Kaori is about to say something, but it's clear he's not listening."C'mon, Kaori." I pull her through the door, and inside of the house.Mom is inside trying to fit a new winter coat onto Mir. She's very hard to buy clothes for, because she just outgrows them. "Mom, can we talk?""This is serious." Kaori and I plead."Uhh, sure. What's up?" She pulls at Mir's collar, and her coat folds around her neck."In private, please?" I really don't want any of my sisters finding out about this."..Let's go to my bedroom. Mir, can you walk around and tell me how that is?" "Mm." She replies under a thick layer of wool wrapped around her mouth.I follow Mom into her bedroom, and close the door behind Kaori.So now it's just Kaori, Mom, and me. How do I tell her that I may have a stalker boyfriend who may or may not be a mobster? >Tell her everything, no holding back.>D-don't mention the part about the mobsters, but do mention the part about the boyfriend.>No! I do not have a boyfriend.>Just show her the gift and say nothing>Other?
>>3151092wait, didn't she send us a message to come see her about that family crest?>Ask her if someone touched her phone recently
>>3151092>Ask her about the crest.
>>3151092>We have a stalker who might be a mobster, but he's not our boyfriend. We never agreed to a relationship!
>>3151092Supporting>>3151176>We have a stalker who might be a mobster, but he's not our boyfriend. We never agreed to a relationship!
"Mom, didn't you send us a message to come see you?" I feel really confused at why she doesn't understand exactly why I'm here."Well, I did. But you look really worried. Did something happen?" "We have a stalker." Kaori concludes.I didn't want to put it that way, but it is the truth of the matter."A what?" Mom blinks."Look, I got this thing at the Christmas party." I hand her the case. She opens it up, and examines the gold crest. Quietly, she reads over the note.I continue, "On our way home, I saw a car with this exact emblem on it! I think he might be a mobster!" "Wow." Mom seems to be entranced, reading over the note, "..Masami has a boyfriend-""NO! NO! NO!" I try to deflect as hard as I can! "I don't have a boyfriend! We never agreed to a relationship!" "Plus, Masami doesn't want a boyfriend. Not with HIM." Kaori pouts as she finishes that last line."..So, about this crest." Mom continues, "This is the family crest of the Master. You know, the old CEO of Fortune?" "What?!" Kaori jumps. "How would a mobster get this family crest?" "Well, I don't know, but- maybe someone he knew?" Mom looks up at me, and blinks. "It may just be a coincidence." "Mom, he gave me a gold necklace with a diamond in it! How is this a coincidence?! What does this person want?" "Masami, hold on, let me think." Mom keeps glancing at the note. Asking Mom to think could take forever."..Maybe.. Maybe this is from the chairman?" Mom looks back at me. "I mean, last I heard from him, he was traveling the world with Tower. Maybe he sent a gift?" "How would it get under the tree at school, Mom?" Kaori is quick to respond.Not surprisingly, Mom doesn't have an answer to this."Do you have a way to contact him and ask?" I am started to get weirded out, now."Unfortunately, no." Mom sighs, "Again, I haven't seen this crest in a very long time. Years, even. We took it out of Fortune's logo just because the Chairman didn't want his family associated with what we were doing there." "Is there a way to find out if anyone else has this same family crest?" Kaori seems to have reached another conclusion about this, "Maybe someone our age who might do something disgusting to Masami?"What is Kaori talking about? "I guess you could go to the library and look it up, but there's no need for that. You have a cold, Masami. Let me deal with this." Mom crosses her arms.>No, I'll go find out with Kaori.>..Okay, I'll go to bed. >There has to be an easier way. Try to find it on your phone.>Ask around, see if anyone else in your family knows something about it. They came from Fortune>Other?
>>3151387>There has to be an easier way. Try to find it on your phone.
>>3151387>Ask around, see if anyone else in your family knows something about it. They came from Fortune
>>3151387>There has to be an easier way. Try to find it on your phone.yay, technology!maybe the chairman had a son? i don't remember
"Hold on." I take out my phone, "Hold on, hold on. There has to be an easier way." Of course there's an easier way. Using the most powerful tool available to me.The internet! I pull up the image matching service. Surely, this crest has been spotted somewhere on the internet. With a crop, I take the picture in my phone of the crest and drop it into a search engine just for images.It loads for a second and'No results foundAre you looking for -Gold-? -Necklace-? -Jewelry-?'Technology is stupid."I think we should start by cross-referencing family crests, Masami. Not just every piece of jewelry on the internet." Kaori notices my frustration. "Maybe the chairman had a son?" I try to think about where else this emblem would pop up."I think Dad was probably too old for that." Kaori interjects, and still insists calling that guy 'Dad' despite my attempts to keep her from saying that. "The only son I think he really has is Emillion and Othello at this point." >IMMEDIATELY GO BLAME EMILLION RIGHT NOW>Keep calm and go visit Emillion to ask what he may know of this.>No, don't waste time. Go to the family library and look through the books for this one.>Look around and make sure that car isn't outside.>Other?
>>3152148>Look around and make sure that car isn't outside.>Keep calm and go visit Emillion to ask what he may know of this.
>>3152148>Look around and make sure that car isn't outside.>Keep calm and go visit Emillion to ask what he may know of this.>Try to stay awake.
"Either ways, we need more information." I give Mom a hug, "Thanks for helping." "Again, Masami. You don't have to worry about this today if you don't want to. You're sick, and you should focus on sleeping." "I'm fine." I continue to insist.But then, I yawn. Mom simply giggles and rubs my head. "You should really focus on getting some sleep." I would love to, but this is a serious situation. Kaori and I leave Mom's room, and she returns to the kitchen. Which means we're alone in solving this crisis."It's one of Dad's emblems, right?" Kaori, I told you to stop calling him that. "Maybe we should ask Othello or Emillion. Or at least see if that stupid Emillion was put up to doing this." Kaori crosses her arms."I don't see how Emillion could afford a diamond necklace, but I do think it's a good idea to go ask." But first! "Kaori, I'm going to check something real fast." I walk to the front door, and step out onto the lawn. Quickly, I pace out to the road.I don't see that car anywhere near here. So unless I'm being tracked by a drone or an airplane, then there's no way he could know where I am right now.Him being at the Christmas party may have just been a fluke. Of course he would guess that I would show up at the Christmas party after he planted the gift under the tree. He probably knew about the party long before I got there.Maybe Kaori and I are giving him too much credit by assuming that he's everywhere.I go back inside, and proceed to the second floor of our house. Emillion is probably in his room. I knock lightly, and hear a simple "Come in." on response.The door opens, and I step inside.He looks up from his desk. He's become a bit of a bookworm, but he still manages to remain athletic all the same."Emillion." I frown. "I got a really weird present, and I want to hear what you know about it." Suddenly, he blushes."W- wh- what kind of a present?!" Why does that sound so defensive? "The one I just got." I blink. "Wait! We weren't supposed to open presents until tonight!" He grimaces, "You didn't open them early, did you!?" "What?" I'm confused, "No, I mean the Christmas party at school." His posture softens, but his face remains red.I place the red box on his desk. Slowly, he opens it. "This is a real diamond." He gasps. "I know! And I don't even know who it's from!" He examines the necklace closely, but keeps scanning over the golden swan on the inset."Well, do you recognize it?" "I think.." He holds it up slightly, "I think I saw this on the chairman's clothes a few times.""Does the Chairman have a heir or anyone else who would use this symbol?""No. I don't think he would let anyone else use this symbol. Not anyone he doesn't consider family, and he's said multiple times that he has no family." Emillion frowns, does that statement hurt him as much as it does Kaori?>Do you know anyone else with this symbol?>Where can I look for it?>..Wait what was with that first reaction?>Other?
Sorry for the delay folks, last few days have been busy! I think we're back on track, though.
>>3153530>Do you know anyone else with this symbol?
I had another post typed up, but I lost it. So I will see you in the morning.
"Do you know anyone else with this symbol?" I'm starting to run out of ideas."Well, just everyone who used to be the chairman's servant. So.. Kaori, Amaranti, Myself, and uhh." He struggles to think about it.Which is understandable. It's kind of a taboo around the house to bring up 'those' days. As far as anyone knows or needs to know; we're people and always have been. "Other than that, I can't think of anyone else who would have the symbol."He frowns, but then blinks. "..Well, Maybe one other person." "Who?" "..Asai. It used to be Fortune's symbol for a while, and he was the CEO of Fortune." "..Let's not talk about him." I laugh, nervously. "He's somewhere else now, annoying someone who isn't me." "Okay, but aside from that; then I don't know anyone who could have idea what this symbol means." I cross my arms. This hunt is starting to come to an end faster than I anticipated."I'm a little upset by this, though." Emillion looks at the gift, sullen. "There's no way any present I could give would top this. Gold with diamonds, and all."His gaze quickly snaps upward. "T-that is if I got you anything, I mean." He scratches his hair. "I'm sure if-" And I use that term just because he's such a bad liar, "-if you got me anything; then it would be ten times better than this simply because you wouldn't address it like a creepy stalker." That just causes him to blush."Yeah, I mean seriously, who would do that? Not even put their real name on the present and all." He frowns. I'm really confused why he is acting this way."Either ways, maybe you should just stay inside this Christmas, Masami." He folds the box back up, "With the description you gave, and this present; this could be more than what it looks like. This person could be dangerous, and I don't want anything to happen to you."This rare moment of softness from the rather sarcastic Emillion makes you feel a bit warm. "Aw, thanks Emillion." "J-just because it would probably ruin Christmas for Mom, that's all." He leans back in his chair. "Please don't ruin Christmas for her by trying to be a hero." "I won't Emillion." I smile, it's very strange to see him show affection."..Speaking of which, is that the car? Parked outside of our house?" He leans back in his chair, and peeks out his window.I quickly glance over him, and pull the blinds back...That's the car parked right outside of our house.>Put on Belle and go confront him.>MOOM, THE WEIRDO IS BACK>Panic>Try to hide>Other?
>>3155137>MOOM, THE WEIRDO IS BACK>Try to hide>Ask Mir to go spy on the car and its occupant(s).I don't actually remember how cooperative Mir is, but the pastebin says she's our invisible girl, so. Worst case scenario, she refuses and yells at us, right? I feel pretty confident nobody's going to kidnap her when she's invisible.
>>3155137>Panic>Try to hide
>>3155137>MOOM, THE WEIRDO IS BACK>Put on Belle and wait near the front door
>>3155137>>MOOM, THE WEIRDO IS BACK
>>3155137>MOOM, THE WEIRDO IS BACK>Try to hide>Ask Mir to go spy on the car and its occupant(s).
I feel my jaw drop open. The car is parked out on the street, and appears to be staking out the house."I gotta hide." Gently leaves my breath, and I quickly leave Emillion's room."Masami, Wait-" He tries grabbing my arm, but I'm already out of the room by the time he realizes that I'm not near him anymore.Okay, so it's true. The creepy stalker knows where I live. This is a good thing! Really! Now he's made the stupid decision of coming to your house with tons of magic powers that you can use which he probably doesn't have access to. In fact, you know exactly who to ask to find out this guy's identity.But first! "MOOM!" I shout as I go down the stairs, "THE WEIRDO IS BACK!" Mom looks up from her sewing. She's making more cute santa outfits, and I'm sure one of them has my name on it."What?" She stares at me, and blinks. Quietly, she stands up, and walks over to the window. With a quiet whisper, she glances back at me."Masami, go up to your room, I'll call the police." With that, Mom slowly walks out of the room as calm as she can manage.However, I know Mom pretty well, and I know for a fact that she is not calm right now.So it seems I'm going to have to solve this myself! I can do this. First thing is..First thing is hide, of course. First thing is to figure out who is in the car.I track down Mir, and catch her just as she's leaving the bathroom."Mir!" I greet her, "I have an important job for you." This causes her to blink, I usually don't ask her to do things."..You do?" "Yes, it's very important." I bring her over to the window, and have her peek outside. "That car, that's the weirdo that was stalking me earlier. I want you to do that invisible thing, go out there, and find out who is in that car. Come and tell me if it's anyone we know."She takes one look at me.Then back at the car.Then, back at me again."..What will you be doing?" "Well, uh, he's stalking me, right? I'll be hiding." I probably shouldn't have told her the truth.This causes her to look back outside, and then snap back to me in an instant."Wait, why do I have to go out there?!">Mir, please don't do this now.>You'll be fine, no one can see you! >..Oh okay, fine. I'll think of something else.>Maybe we should wait for the police.>Other?
>>3157103>Maybe we should wait for the police.
>This causes her to look back outside, and then snap back to me in an instant.>"Wait, why do I have to go out there?!"Oh no!>>3157103>You'll be fine, no one can see you!>Maybe we should wait for the police.One last try before we give in and invite her to hide with us?
>>3157103>Maybe we should wait for the police.>Cry a little
>>3157103>You'll be fine, no one can see you!
"Y-", I frown, this is not what I expected to happen at all. "You'll be fine! No one can see you!" "It doesn't matter if anyone can see me or not. I'm still there!" Mir appears to have reservations against my little plan."But, if they can't see you then you can get as close as you want!" "Masami, you're going to be in here safe and sound and you're sending ME out there?!" I frown, this was not the amount of resistance I expected to my plan."M-Maybe we should wait in here then." I sigh, and then peek out the window one more time. "We can hide until the police arrive." "..Where are you going to hide?" Mir blinks. That's a good question. You start to look around for a place you can hide just in case they try to come inside.Oh! "The closet!" "I don't want to hide in the closet." Mir frowns, "It's dusty in there." "No! No, it's fine." I open the door, and make room in all of the coats to slide inside. "We'll be safe in here." "..I think I'll pass." Mir replies, and then slowly starts to turn invisible. I can't really do that, so I step into the closet, and close the door.Several minutes pass, and I start to question if Mom even called the police. They should be here by now.Mir is being oddly quiet despite the fact that she was standing just outside the door a second ago."Hey." Mir suddenly breaks the silence. "Kaori is outside, talking to whoever is in the car." I immediately throw the door open, and nearly knock Mir over! Sorry Mir!"What?!" I shout, and then hop over to the window.Sure enough. Kaori, the person who thought this person was dangerous, is standing right next to their car! She's just talking to whoever is inside like there's nothing wrong! >Go outside and confront them right now! >Bring Mir, too!>Open the door and yell at Kaori!>Hide again!Other?
>>3158740>Stay quiet and keep watching.
>>3158740>Ask Mom why Kaori's talking to the person in the suspicious car
>>3158740>Open the door and yell at Kaori!
>>3158740>Open the door and yell at Kaori!Damn, I completely forgot about this and missed most of it.
My jaw is practically on the floor. She's just talking to the creepy stalker like it's nothing! What is wrong with her?! She's just talking to this person like it's perfectly normal! "Mom!" I turn back, and shout. "Why is Kaori talking with that weirdo?!"No answer.I look back out the window, and-NOW MOM IS TALKING WITH THAT WEIRDO!"T-this is bad!" I gasp, and turn to Mir. "When did Mom get out there?!""I think she went out the back door!" Mir seems just as worried as I am, now!"Why would she just walk up to that car and start talking?!" I'm absolutely horrified at the lack of self-preservation on display!"..Masami, maybe they know them?" "They didn't know them before! This is unforgivable!"In my outrage; I reach for the front door, and violently throw it open."KAORI!" MOM! I shout at them. "GET AWAY FROM THAT WEIRDO'S CAR RIGHT NOW!"They both look at me, and then look back at the car."Yes, that's Masami." NO MOM DON'T RAT ME OUT!Suddenly, the car door swings open! I see a foot pop out of the passenger's side.A grown man steps out!He has shoulder-length black hair, with half-rimmed glasses on.On his face, a wicked smile that I would love to rub off with my fist. That is to say, not for my lack of trying."Masami!" Asai, yes, THAT Asai, greets me like I'm his best friend in the world. "Long time, no see! You've certainly grown. How has your Christmas been?">Go try and wipe that smile off of his face.>Go back in and shut the door.>Faint from exhaustion.>..Calmly approach him>-and tell him to get lost.>Other?
>>3160636>Go try and wipe that smile off of his face.>Faint from exhaustion.
>>3160636>>Go try and wipe that smile off of his face.
>>3160636>Go back in and shut the door.
>>3160636>Go try and wipe that smile off of his face.
>>3160636>Put on Belle>Go try and wipe that smile off his face>"Christmas was fine until you ruined everything!"
"Y-" I'm about to say something, but I wasn't quite prepared for this. Frankly, I'm not sure what I was expecting.Something else does come to mind, though.I walk straight up to him. My face has curled into a pout. My fists extend outward, and pound against his stupid chest."You idiot, you idiot, YOU IDIOT! WHY ARE YOU HERE?!" They continue their assault on his shirt."Masami, please, that tickles." Asai laughs, "You've grown, but you're still small and cute." This isn't working! My fists aren't strong enough in my fever-weakened state to pound him into the dirt! Wait, I know!I put on Belle, and feel her armor wash over my shoulders.Yes! I can rip a car in half with Belle's outfit. Let's fight, Asai!However, the increased strength doesn't change much. I start to pad on his chest with the full strength of my palms. I think, I think that I may be more tired than I anticipated. Even this is proving to be a challenge."Masami, that's- haha" He pushes against my forehead and easily keeps me away."THIS WAS YOU, WASN'T IT?!" I stomp my foot, "YOU PUT THAT GIFT UNDER THE TREE! CHRISTMAS WAS FINE UNTIL YOU RUINED EVERYTHING!""Actually, that was me."My head snaps back toward the car. On the other side, a girl about my age is standing against the edge of the car.It's the clown."I left the present under the tree." She smiles, "I thought it would be funny if you got a diamond necklace in front of your friends from a mysterious stranger and you spent the whole day trying to piece together who it was!"She laughing, but I'm too shocked to process her words."-But then you came home and hid in your room. So I guess the joke's on me!">Attack the clown. Use snow.>What are you all doing here, anyway?!>Throw the stupid necklace back in her face>Ask how both of these losers were able to afford that for a prank>Other?
>>3161826>What are you all doing here, anyway?!>Do you really have that much money to waste?
>>3161826>Attack the clown. Use snow.
>>3161826>Do you really have that much money to waste?>Throw the stupid necklace back in her faceLet's make a terrible decision!
The clown continues to laugh as I pout harder than I have ever pouted before.Wordlessly, I lean down and gather a handful of snow. Quickly, I pack it into an orb shape. The clown has no idea what is coming for her.I fling the white ball of powder over the car, but the clown ducks away just in time! Drat! "Masami, don't do that." Mom frowns."DO YOU EVEN KNOW HOW MUCH I'VE BEEN WORRYING?!" I yell at the vehicle.She pops her head out once more. "Yes! I do! Isn't it hilarious?" "Do you really have that much money to waste?! This is a gold necklace with a real diamond!" "Oh, I didn't pay for it!" "What?!" I turn to Asai, "So it must have been you!" I take the red box out of my coat, and shove it back at him."Here! I don't want this stupid necklace anyway! You can have it back!" "I didn't buy it." He chuckles. "-but I wish I thought of the idea. That's hilarious." "If you didn't buy it, then who did?!" "Masami." Kaori grabs my attention, "Look in the car." I watch as the window slowly rolls downward. Inside, a figure sits on the driver's side of the vehicle. It's the Chairman, well, former-chairman of Fortune. -Former chairman after I broke almost every bone in his body over a disagreement.He deserved it, though.He seems to have healed, and his once stone-cold gaze appears much softer now. I'm not sure how to describe it."Masami, I'd like you to meet Edward." Mom introduces the man in the car like I've never met him before, "He's the former CEO of Fortune." "Pleasure to meet you, Masami." He's.. smiling?"Wait." I look back at Asai, "What are you all doing here, anyway?" "Can't some old family stop by for a visit on Christmas?" >You? No.>We're not family.>..I guess.>Hold on, you really hurt Kaori the last time you saw her.>What the heck happened the last year for this change of heart?>Other?
>>3162463>..I guess.>We're not family.I mean, you don't need to be family to visit someone. Even on Christmas. But he's absolutely not family! Becoming a better person doesn't auto-magically erase consequences.
>>3162463>..I guess.>You need adult supervision...
>>3162463>..I guess.>We're not family.
>>3162463>What the heck happened the last year for this change of heart?>Also change of... bones? I'm pretty sure some of that would take more than a year to heal
>>3162463>We're not family.>Hold on, you really hurt Kaori the last time you saw her.
"..I guess, but we're still not family." My arms continue to be crossed, and I continue to pout."Ha! That was the Masami I was expecting." Asai pats me on the shoulder, but I'm no closer to putting down my guard."No, seriously Asai. We're not family." I pout. "I mean, you don't need to be family to visit someone, especially on Christmas, but we're not family.""I thought you would feel that way." He laughs. "I don't know what happened the last year, but becoming a better person doesn't just erase the consequences from when you were a bad person. You're not an adult, you need adult supervision and I can't give you that."I'm still frowning."Not going to argue against that." He shrugs, "What do you think of that?""I think she's right." The Chairman is laughing, and it's far more disturbing than you were expecting. "I would say, that is the other reason we're here. This visit is very much about how I treated family.""We're not family." I continue frowning."I think we're family." Kaori huffs."What happened this last year for this change of heart, and.. bones?" I'm fairly certain that some of the treatment I gave him should have kept him down longer than a year."We've been traveling the world, Masami." Asai leans against the car, "Getting away from Fortune put things into perspective for Edward and I.""How so?"The chairman answers for him."I've been too reliant on magic, and Fortune." He looks over, toward Mom. "I got tangled up with it to where I could not tell who I was hurting anymore with it, nor did I care. Taking a break from it has reminded me that there's more to life than that." "..Okay great, but that doesn't make the terrible things you did go away." I frown even harder."I know, Masami. I know. I understand if you don't forgive me for any of it. I certainly wouldn't." The chairman looks back toward Mom, "I suppose we will be leaving soon.""No! Don't do that." Mom interjects, "Come inside! Let's have dinner together. It will be like a family reunion." "Mom! are you serious?!" I practically gawk. "..Maybe we're not family, Masami." Asai is smiling, I can feel it. "So maybe you can have dinner with some of your Mom's old friends?" >We're not friends either.>No.>Okay, fine.>We're still not friends, though.>Other?
>>3163713>We're not friends either.
>>3163713>We're not friends either.>Okay, fine.
>>3163733Nooooo!Mom is the kind and forgiving side of the family. We're its stern hand, dispensing righteous retribution.
>>3163741For how long though? It's starting to seem pretty futile.
>>3163713>Pout.>Okay, fine.>We're not friends either.>Do pinky promise so he will behave, the ancient not nice version.
I cross my arms, and pout even harder."We're not friends, either." I glare at him, "-but since this is Christmas, I think it will be fine." Asai sighs, and smiles"I'm really happy to-""But-" I stop him. "-only if you pinky promise that you will behave.""Pinky promis-"He blinks, he seemingly doesn't know what I'm talking about.I extend my hand with my pinky out.He looks toward the chairman in the car. He's just smiling back like this is the funniest thing.But I'm being serious!He nervously extends his hand, and you reciprocate in the best way to pinky swear.I grab his pinky with my own and SQUEEZE IT AS HARD AS I CAN.His face visibly twitches as it uncomfortably distorts."You promise, riiiight?" I hold his hand with extra pressure for this one."..right." He replies, under his breath. "I promise."I let go of his hand and cross my arms. He recoils his hand back into his other hand with a sigh.The whole time, the chairman is laughing like it's the funniest thing ever."Let me pull the car out of the street." The chairman laughs, "Thanks for that, Masami."'You're not welcome.' I think to myself.I walk back to the house, and leave Asai cradling his hand. I approach the door, and notice Mir staring at me."I can't believe you talked to him! Is he leaving.""..No." I sigh, "In fact, they're staying for dinner."Mir simply sighs."Can you really trust Asai to do that?">I don't know.>It will be fine.>Go collapse onto the couch in exhaustion.>Fall over right here.>Other?
>>3163932>I don't know.>Go collapse onto the couch in exhaustion.
>>3163932>I don't know.>Wobble to Mom.
>>3163932>Mom's trying to pretend they're family. It's okay if you hide again, Mir.>Go collapse onto the couch in exhaustion.Shame on these adults. If they want to act like they're having a happy reunion, they can do it on their own. Without the kids. Okay, maybe they could allow the kids to opt-in, as clearly some want in. But the kids should have, by default, an alternative to this farce.
>>3163932>I don't know.>Wobble to Mom.>Hug.
"I don't know." I wobble past her, and toward the couch. Belle falls off my shoulders and back into card-form as I sit down, "Mom's trying to pretend that he's family, but we're not. You can hide again if you want to, Mir. I'm done." "Done? What are you going to do?" Mom walks in the door, and I respond by slowly wobbling over to her. My hands wrap around her, and I nearly collapse into her arms."Masami!" Mom scolds me, "You're burning up! Why did you go outside if you're this hot?!" "Why did you invite those monsters into our home?" I sigh, and then feel Mom lift me off of my feet.She walks me over to the couch, and lays me down. Quickly, she rushes off to the kitchen, and my eyes track upward.Up toward Mir, who is eying me worriedly."Masami, are you okay?" "I'm fine, I gotta-" I blink, and I think more time passes than I realize, "-I gotta watch the house in case Asai."Mom returns from the kitchen with an ice-pack. She gently drapes it over my head. "Masami, you should go lay down." Mom is frowning.>No, I gotta stay awake. >Maybe you're right.>Close eyes, drift off right here.>No! I'm fine! >Other?
>>3164590>Try to stay awake.>Fail.>Close eyes, drift off right here.
>>3164590>No, I gotta stay awake.>Close eyes, drift off right here.
>>3164590>>No, I gotta stay awake.
>>3164590>Maybe you're right.>Wait, I'm already lying down.
>>3164590>No, I gotta stay awake. >Close eyes, drift off right here.
"No." I push the ice pack off of my head. "I gotta stay awake. I gotta keep Asai in check."She simply sighs, and rests the ice pack on my head."Keep this here for a few minutes, okay?" "Okay."Mom stands up, and walks over to the door. She opens it, and-They walk in.'They' being Asai, the chairman, and that clown.The whole time, I'm glaring at them with the most terrifying glance I can muster while laying on my back with an ice pack on my head. Mir stands up, and at least greets them with a subtle "Hi." "Merry Christmas, it's good to finally meet." Asai is still putting on his nice-guy facade, "What might your name be?" "Mir." She's still keeping her distance. "That's right! You were one of Masami's car-" The chairman nudges Asai."-I mean, you're one of her sisters." "That's right." Mir seems a little embarrassed, "It's uh, nice to meet you."No! Don't tell him that! "What is going on down here?" I hear Emillion come down the stairs, "Where did-"He stops just on the stairwell, and his jaw flops open."MASTER?!" He shouts upon seeing the chairman. "Is that really you?!" He leaps down the stairs, and rushes straight past Asai. He stands before the chairman asking him a flurry of questions. The chairman appears to be more confused than anything else. He is bombarded with a multitude of questions like 'Where have you been?' to 'Why did you leave us?' and even 'Are you here to stay?'Emillion, you idiot. "Wait, are you.. Emillion?" The chairman finally understands who he is talking to."YES!" He shouts, "We were so worried after you left! You just disappeared overnight!" "I.. didn't realize you were-" A realization passes over the chairman's face."..Let's discuss this over dinner." "YES! Let's do that, uh, Master, are you staying just for dinner? for-" "Don't call me 'Master'. We're family."Emillion follows the Chairman off into the dining room, and I'm left staring at the ceiling."No, he's not." I mumble under my breath as I hear Emillion gushing over someone who effectively abandoned him. With a yawn; my eyes flutter.--"Masami."I feel a light nudge awake me from slumber.I look over to see none other than Haruko. She stands over the couch with a green box in her hand."Huh?" Is all I reply with."Masami, we're opening presents now. Don't you want to get up?""D-" My eyes aren't quite there yet. "Did I beat Asai? Did I miss opening presents again?" "No, we just finished dinner. You've been asleep about an hour.">A few more minutes>Fine, fine, at least be there to open these gifts.>Asai is gone though, right?>Panic and remember that he's still in the house.>Other?
>>3165726>Fine, fine, at least be there to open these gifts.>Please tell me they're gone.
>>3165726>Fine, fine, at least be there to open these gifts.>Asai is gone though, right?
>>3165726>>Fine, fine, at least be there to open these gifts.
>>3165726>Fine, fine, at least be there to open these gifts.
>>3165726>Panic and remember that he's still in the house.
I yawn once more, and stretch my arms. A lukewarm ice pack falls off of my head."Fine, fine. I'll at least be there to open gifts." I mumble, thinking about the gifts I missed out on this morning.They were probably good gifts.I pull myself off of the couch, and then quickly realize that my head weighs a million pounds. After a few seconds trying to keep myself from falling over; I quickly right myself on Haruko's arm."Masami! Are you alright?!" "I'm fine, I'm fine." I mumble, "Asai is gone though, right?"Haruko grabs my arm, and starts to pull me into the room we have set up for the Christmas tree."Come on, everyone's waiting." "I notice you didn't answer my question." I mumble again, "Please tell me Asai and that stupid Chairman are gone."My questions are answered as I'm dragged into the rec room, and look up. Asai and the chairman are standing RIGHT THERE."Hey son, what did you get?" The chairman leans down, over Emillion."A Christmas card from Kaori." He smiles. I'm far too disgusted to feel warm about it. However, I do manage to plant myself next to the tree without toppling over.Julie crawls over next to me. "For you, Masami!" She hands me a small package.I open it up, and it's a wrapped bottle of aspirin?"I thought this is what you needed the most right now." It's clear Julie bought this gift between now and this morning, but I'm not going to fault her for it."Thank you, Julie." I smile.Emillion looks at me sheepishly. He has a little blue box in his hand.Slowly, he stands up and walks over."Masami, I'm sorry you got sick.""Not your fault." At least, I don't think it is. "Did you get my present?"He holds a red card out in his hand. Inside, I gave him ten dollars. I didn't know what else to get him.Slowly, he hands me the blue box."Merry Christmas." He seems a little flustered at handing it to me.I unwrap and open the box, slowly. It's a tiny cardboard case with a top that almost rips off on its own.I slide it out of the package, and find that it's a gold-painted bracelet with fake blue sapphires on it. It's kind of like the fake-gold earrings I got for Aiko."Y-yeah, I know." Emillion is blushing, and is having problems keeping eye contact. "Kind of lame compared to, well, real gold and diamonds. But I thought it would look really nice on you.">I love it, thank you.>Hug him.>I rather have this than a million gold necklaces from *them*>Laugh, it is kind of silly>Why are you blushing?>Other?
>>3166705>it's cute>Thanks!>I rather have this than a million gold necklaces from *them*
>>3166705>I love it, thank you.>Hug him.
>>3166705>I love it, thank you.>Hug him.>it's cute>Thanks!
>>3166705>Hug him.>I love it, thank you.
"I think it's cute." I marvel at the number of shiny fake jewels that line it the outset.The clasp comes undone in my hand, and I smile at the small, blue-jeweled bracelet. It easily clasps back over my wrist."I love it, thank you." Emillion is about to nervously say something, but I lean over and grasp him into a hug.His body stiffens at the unexpected gesture, but he slowly melts into the embrace."Merry Christmas, Masami." He returns the hug, softly.I pull away from him, and he still has that red blush on his face. "Oh no, did you catch my fever from me?" I put my hand on his forehead. "No! No, I'm fine." He rubs his face, "Just a little surprised, that's all."I notice that his eyes are tracking right behind me. I turn around and see Amarante, his sister, standing right there. She has a massive grin on her face."What?" I blink."Nothing." She chuckles. "My turn!" Haruko slides next to me, and seems to have something else cylindrical wrapped up in a green bow.I unravel it, and find..Another bottle of medicine? "Tylenol." I read on the side of the bottle."Hey!" Julie suddenly notices the bottle in my hand, "No fair! you copied my present!" "No, I didn't." Haruko huffs at her twin, "You gave her a bottle of aspirin. This is Tylenol." I laugh, lightly. "I like this one too, thank you.""Mine is better!" Julie shouts."So, I think that's all for presents." Mom is smiling. She just gave Mir and Cirrus their presents. "Are we-" "Hold on." The chairman speaks up, "You haven't gotten your present." "My.." Mom seems confused, "Present?" "Of course." He smiles, and presents a large red box.>Freak out and grab it.>Try to stay calm.>Put on Belle just in case.>Try to talk Mom into not accepting it>Other?
>>3167596>Try to talk Mom into not accepting itIt's probably a trap WE should carefully open it just in case!
>>3167596>Try to stay calm.
>>3167596>Try to stay calm.>Fail.>Panic!
>>3167596>Put on Belle just in case.
Okay, stay calm. This is probably just a dumb book or whatever presents adults give each other. Everything appears to be fine. The chairman simply hands the gift to Mom, and-Suddenly, I notice something from Asai.He's smiling.That's never good. Not to mention, Mom is about to accept the gift.Immediately, I spring into action! Belle slips out of my hands, and back over my shoulders.Quickly, I close the distance between Asai and Mom. With a grab, I take the dangerous gift from the chairman's hand."Mom! No!" I shout, "This is obviously a bomb or some kind of trap! How could you-" I tear the wrapper off, and find that it's something else strange.A picture, a framed picture.It's a picture of a group of people standing for a photo. Some are monsters, others are humans. The monsters stand on the back row with several humans on the front row.I gaze at it, and to be honest I don't recognize anyone in the picture.Mom walks up behind me, and smiles."Is that the old team?" "I found it when I was going through my grandfather's things." The chairman laughs. Wait, he can laugh?! "Back when he wanted to conquer the world with magic. I think that's you, in the center."I glance at the center of the picture, and spot a girl with long, flowing black hair. She sits almost right in the perfect center of the photo, almost as if the camera was focusing on her. She has a more confused expression on her face, and is in fact the only one in the picture who does. Everyone else is making a very serious-looking expression or saluting the camera. "I forgot we took this." Mom laughs, "What year was this? 1988?" "1987, I believe." The chairman laughs. "I was still going to a private school in Switzerland. I don't even remember half of the people in this picture.""Most of them were jerks." Mom sighs, "-but it's a good reminder. I forgot how we even got this picture, they were strictly forbidden.""I'm glad to impart it to someone who might remember who those people are." Asai chimes in, "I'm probably in there somewhere, but I don't remember what I looked like.""Yeah, you're right here!" She points to an armored-looking monster in the back. "Remember? You had the gauntlet at the time." "Oh, maybe I did. Was it that recent?" I'm totally lost in this conversation.>Slowly slink away.>Try to encourage Mom not to get nostalgic over this.>Ask who some of the people are.>Maybe it's time for sleep.>Other?
>>3168435>Maybe it's time for sleep.
>>3168435>Ask who some of the people are.>Maybe it's time for sleep.
>>3168435>Ask who some of the people are.
>>3168435>Slowly slink away.>Maybe it's time for sleep.
"Who are these people?" I look at the photo and examine the many strange faces. "They're family." Mom smiles, "I guess you could think of them as your relatives." I cross my arms, "I don't want to think of them as family.""They were my family." She smiles, wistfully. "Maybe they weren't always the nicest people, but they were still family all of the same." I don't get adult logic at all.She points out another figure in the picture, and I show myself to the door. It's about time for bed, and I'm about done with trying to argue against just forgiving and forgetting the past evil of those men.I almost run into my oldest brother. He's bringing in a trash can to pick up all of the discarded wrappers and ribbons. "Do you need help?" "I appreciate the help but-" He adjusts his glasses, "I think you need to get some rest." I think he's right. "Okay, Good night brother." "Good night, Masami!" Asai calls out to me, "It was good getting to see you again. We'll be in touch for the next week!" I don't even have the energy to make a comeback to that.I leave the rec room and head up the stairs. I'm so tired that I don't even feel like taking a bath right now. I'm stopped just outside of my bedroom door by Kaori. She tugs on my sleeve as I'm about to enter my room."Are you okay?" She looks worried. "I'm just sick of trying to deal with Mom and the chairman and Asai." "Edward." Kaori looks serious, "The 'chairman's name is Edward, and he's not the chairman of anything, anymore." "Whatever." I huff, "Either ways he's still not family and I don't appreciate Mom trying to treat him like he is."This causes Kaori to look rather sullen. I forgot that this was a sticking point with her for a very long time.>Cont.
I open the door, and simply flop onto the bed. Kaori sighs, and covers me with the blankets."I think sleeping in here is a bad idea if you're sick, so I'll sleep in Mom's room tonight." Kaori smiles, "If you need anything, please let me know." "Just one question." I look up at Kaori, even her hair glows in the moonlight. "Why are you still attached to the chai- 'Edward'? He treated you terribly for years. He said he wasn't your father at one point." Kaori sighs, but has a light smile underneath it."It's true he's.. a difficult person. At the same time, he's still family. Your family is still your family no matter what they do or where they go. I would still love you no matter what happens.""Even if I did something really bad?" I look at her, and blink."Of course, Masami. Why wouldn't I?" I look up at the ceiling, and find the answer escaping me."Maybe I just don't get it.""It's like with Asai. You may not like him, but it's clear he thinks a lot of you. That's what family does." "I don't think about him at all." I look back at the moonlight, "Not before tonight, I mean.""Maybe you'll feel differently someday." Kaori flips the blanket over me. "Either ways, get some sleep. Try to feel better."She leans over, and hugs me. I weakly return the embrace."Merry Christmas, Kaori." I smile."Merry Christmas, Masami."She leaves the room, and turns off the light. I try to find a way to feel comfortable, and shut my eyes.Kaori can say that I might feel differently, given time. I don't think that I will, though.Asai is a jerk.>Thread End
Everyone, thank you for participating! I've had a wonderful time writing this Christmas special. Apologies if it seemed a little slow at times. However! It was still fun to write, and I still enjoy writing more Masami! Anyway, as some of you may know, I've been running another quest! Nanoha RaptorS, on akunhttps://fiction.live/stories/Magical-Girl-Lyrical-Nanoha-RaptorS/nGZdw54rui4RWPx68You can find out more about runtimes, when I'm making more threads, or what's going on with my quests at my twitter account.https://twitter.com/qm_cardheartIf you have any questions, comments, suggestions. Let me know. Also, be sure to let me know what you thought of this thread! I appreciate any feedback.Thank you!
>>3170282Thanks for running.
>>3170282Thanks for running! I needed this dose of adorableness and wholesomeness in my life.
>>3170282thanks for running, it felt werid reading some CPM after so long, but it's a good kind of weird
>>3170291>>3170455>>3170662Thank you so much for playing! I was worried at first, because I didn't know how many people would be willing to play a CPM omake a year after the last one.I appreciate all of your time and energy!
>>3170835Thx for running.
>>3171017Thanks for playing!I hope to see everyone again.