Deet … Deet … Deet … DeetGrimacing, you roll over to slap the top of your incessant alarm. Groggily, you rub the sleep from your eyes, before sitting up in your … right, this was your bed now. It had been almost a week and you still weren’t completely used to waking up in a bed where you had enough room to roll over without falling off.Today would be your fifth day working as Lady Kaguya’s retainer. So far, you’ve idled the time away exploring the rooms of the Muramoto Manor close to wherever Kaguya’s classes were, and when you had seen them all, simply lounging about in a nearby couch or chair. But while you were still getting used to the comfort of life in the manor, you could already feel a growing ennui inside you.But hey, at least your shower wasn’t on top of your toilet now. And you could make yourself breakfast in your living room kitchenette instead of fishing something out of your fridge … although you still did that. The only thing you remember how to make after twenty years outside a kitchen is scrambled eggs.As soon as you’re groomed and dressed, you wait in the common room connecting your quarters and Kaguya’s suite to the rest of the manor. You’ve discovered that Kaguya tended to be slightly late in the morning, sometimes by five minutes and never more than ten. But after around that long, she’ll step out her door.“Good morning, Kentaro-kun.” Kaguya greets you.“Good morning, Kaguya-sama.” You bow. That was the routine the two of you have adopted since you became her retainer. You would return her quiet greeting. Then, you would politely ask her what you always did …>Did you have a restful night?>Are you ready for today?>It’s a pleasant morning, isn’t it?
Previous thread: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4099115/
>>4117291>It’s a pleasant morning, isn’t it?
>>4117291>Did you have a restful night?
>>4117291>>Did you have a restful night?
Vote called, writing
“Did you have a pleasant night?” You ask. As always, Kaguya pauses, as if considering your words, before answering.“Yes. it was quite restful.”Kaguya’s first class was always something involving physical activity. Perhaps it was to wake her up in the morning, get her blood pumping. Since coming to the Muramoto Manor, you’ve started speculating over the many eccentricities of Plutocratic behavior. You’ve come to appreciate that many of them had a subtle, practical reason behind them.“See you in an hour, Kaguya-sama.” You tell Kaguya as soon as you reach the archery hall. Her tutor gives a brief bow of greeting before sliding the screen door shut. Well, now it was time for your own training. You make your way to the Kendo hall close by.Luckily for you, you find Yoji training in the hall as well, exchanging blows with a wooden bokken with three other of his division mates as always. Yoji was an enforcer for Household Division 8. Since you came to work for Household, he’s been your sparring partner. You’re glad that the time Kaguya spent in the archery hall seemed to more-or-less match with his division’s training time. Without him, you wouldn’t have an outlet for the energy building up inside you. Whenever he isn’t in the hall and you find yourself sparring against someone else, they never provide enough of a challenge for the action you crave. Hmm, maybe you should start sparring against three others at a time.“Yo, Yoji.” You casually greet him.“Good morning, Kentaro,” He politely replies, “Ready for another bout?”“Sure am.” You pick up your bokken from the rack. This time, you’d beat him first try.>Overwhelm him with powerful blows>Strike him before he can strike back>Test his defence, look for an opening
>>4117500>>Strike him before he can strike back
>Test his defence, look for an opening
>>4117500>>Overwhelm him with powerful blows
>>4117500>Wait for him to attack and counterHe's best on defense, so make him attack.
Please roll 3 1d20s. Two successes are needed to succeed.
>>4117502>>4117505>>4117515>>4117526Come on. We already know his element is defense. Do you really want to give him the free +2?
Rolled 17 (1d20)>>4117527Ah, shit. Too late now.
Rolled 4 (1d20)>>4117527
Rolled 14 (1d20)>>4117527
Rolled 12 (1d20)>>4117528Yoji's specialty is dexterity and precision, the same as you.Rolling for Yoji.
>+2 An overwhelming offense will overpower even the most perfect defense>-2 Yoji plays to his strengths of dexterity and precision>SuccessBy now, you’ve learned that Yoji favors a tight defense from which he’ll test your own defenses from, only attacking when he’s sure he has found a way to slip past your guard. And if you’re honest with yourself, you admit that he was more skilled in you when it came to a measured exchange of blows. So you don’t give him that chance.With a shout, you immediately go on the offensive, leaning heavily into your attacks and bringing your bokken down with all the force you could bear. Yoji cooly deflects the first few of your blows off the edge of his bokken, but you immediately attack again … and again …To maintain the ability to parry your blows with comparatively little effort, Yoji had to give ground. You were successfully forcing him back. But with how recklessly you were chaining such overcommitted attacks together, you would eventually find yourself off-balance. But that didn’t matter if you could get Yoji off-balance first!And eventually, Yoji retreats a step too little, and you lean in in just the right way. His guard breaks and in your next blow, you catch him in the stomach. With real steel in your hands, you would have eviscerated him.Yoji holds up his hand, admitting defeat. “That’s the first time you’ve managed to win first try.” He says.“Hey, I managed the very first time, right?” You protest.Yoji scoffs. “That little scrape hardly counts. Well, let’s see if you can win again this time …”>Overwhelm him with powerful blows>Strike him before he can strike back>Test his defence, look for an opening
>>4117559>>Strike him before he can strike back
>>4117559>>Overwhelm him with powerful blows
>>4117559>Strike him before he can strike back
>>4117559>Strike him before he can strike backDon't think the same trick is gonna work twice
Please roll 3 1d20s
Rolled 5 (1d20)>>4117572
Rolled 16 (1d20)>>4117572
Rolled 20 (1d20)Rolling for Yoji
>>4117586Whew Yoji calm down bro
You’re pretty sure that the same trick won’t work twice. Yoji must be getting used to your tactic of overwhelming defense by now. So you decide to take the exact opposite approach. As soon as the two of you square off and take your stances, you rush forwards, hoping to overwhelm Yoji’s defences with speed instead of strength.You instantly regret it. Your first swing is absorbed by Yoji’s defences, your bokken lazily parried to one side. Yoji leans forwards through your now nonexistent guard, bringing his own bokken to your throat. You’re glad he stops short, a blow to the throat would have seriously hurt. And even if your blows wouldn’t be fight-ending even with edged weapons, this time if he had properly followed through with a real blade, you would be dead.“Alright, You win.” You admit as soon as Yoji withdraws his sword. What else could you do? Yoji’s parry and riposte was so fluid and precise that it was almost impolite to have used it in a sparring bout.Yoji sighs. “I might not be skilled enough to lecture you, Kentaro, but you know that swift attacks only work against guards that are weak or nonexistent, right?”You sigh. Now that he mentioned it, one of your instructors back in the vocational academy had mentioned something along those lines. But as an enforcer, you had rarely used your sword against a peer opponent. Maybe you were a bit rusty. It was a shame, you had been the top of your class back then in terms of swordsmanship. But now, even though you could outshoot, outdrink, and outfuck yourself from back then, you’d probably lose in a bout of kendo … if you both had good augments of course.“What a depressing sigh.” Yoji comments, leaning on his bokken, “What’s the matter? We’re technically still 1-1 today.”>Just thinking about the past>I think this place is making me lose my edge>You’re good, but you’re not much better than me. How are you already working in Household?>I won’t be depressed when I beat you
>>4117604>I think this place is making me lose my edge
>>4117604>Just thinking>Ask him about Toshi. Maybe he knows something.
>>4117604>>Just thinking about the past
>>4117604>>I think this place is making me lose my edge
Unfortunately, I can't do any more updates tonight. Let's see if I can get it out sometime in the morning.
“I think this place is making me lose my edge.” You admit.“Is that so?” Yoji chuckles, “It was like that for me when I first started working here … At first I spent my free time exploring the manor, but it wasn’t long until I realized all the rooms in a Japanese manor like this are the same.”“I know right? All paper and bamboo and straw mats, everywhere you go. I’ve had month-long breaks between different assignments, but at least I was still in the city, right? But here … Frag, life is so peaceful here.”“Violent men like us don’t deserve to live in such comfort.” Yoji nods, agreeing with your sentiment, although in a more reflective way.You scowl. Yoji’s calmness was a bit annoying. “So? How do you deal with it?”“I spar. I train. I keep myself sharp. But thankfully, Kasai-san is a harsh taskmaster. If you don’t keep yourself sharp, he’ll do it for you.”“What? That’s it?” You say in disbelief.Yoji smiles. “I also get blind drunk at the end of every other week. There’s a bar midway down the mountain with a good view of the city … But I don’t have a master whose side I have to be at, so you may have to look for your own outlet.”“Ah, frag it …” You mutter in disgust. Just then, the bulky, balding figure of Kasai walks through the door.“Attention men of the 8th Division!” At the sound of his authoritative voice, everyone in the Kendo hall stops what they’re doing. You listen as well. This sounds important, whatever it is. “As some of you may have already heard, the Ishii Conglomerate has been up to something recently. We’ve had an increase of assets raided, street contacts disappearing, and shareholders found dead. The Ishii, heathen upstarts that they are, didn’t try too hard to cover their tracks. Now, I want you all to be extra vigilant from now on against Ishii fraggery since they might just be impolite enough to visit Household without an invitation. Stay on your toes men.”“SIR!” The members of Division 8 bowed.So the Ishii were up to something, huh? You knew about the Ishii Conglomerate. They were an upstart corporation on the rise, founded by some family that had more-or-less accidentally found themselves rich fifty years ago. They had consolidated many of the small businesses and ventures in Tokyo before expanding operations throughout Japan, and then the Pacific Region. They were vicious cutthroats which pushed the boundaries of polite behavior in the inter-corporation shadow wars that were always simmering. Oh yes, you have a lot of experience with the Ishii Conglomerate. Life-and-death experience. Part of you is disappointed that you weren’t going to be streetside this time around, but a more sensible part is thankful you won’t be involved in the absolute craziness that will be coming.“I’ll be accepting questions now.” Kasai announced.>Any questions for Kasai?
>>4118084>Nothing comes to mind right now.
>>4118084None for now
“Yeah, how the frag are we going to kick Ishii ass all the way up here?” Someone in the hall yells out.“You’re not paid to kick ass, you’re paid to do what the frag you’re told.” Kasai responds sternly, “But who knows? Maybe Lord Muramoto will send us downtown to take care of something. Maybe, maybe not. Don’t get your hopes up. Anyways, back to training!”Obediently, Division 8 returns to their sparring. But the atmosphere is markedly different than before. There’s an excited murmur in the air.“So Kentaro, what do you think of all of this?” Yoji asks as you square off again.“I’m gonna miss it.” You groan, “You’re still an Enforcer and not a bodyguard, so you might get a chance to use your sword for real, but I’ll be stuck up here above the clouds … Anyways, how are you so calm about this? Didn’t you say you missed streetside?”“I meditate every night.” Yoji says, “Give it a try, if you remember how …”“I’ve got no time for that.” You scoff.“So your nights are busy?” Yoji grins mischeviously, “With what? Women?““O-of a sort …” You confess sheepishly. Last night, you had reached the halfway point in Leave No Man Behind. What an underappreciated game.“Getting to know the female staff here already … frag, you move fast.” Yoji says, misunderstanding you completely. “You really shouldn’t be so sorry to work here.”“Yeah yeah,” You hurry Yoji along …>Overwhelm him with powerful blows>Strike him before he can strike back>Test his defence, look for an opening
>>4118537>>Test his defence, look for an opening
Rolled 11 (1d20)>>4118805
Rolled 2 (1d20)>>4118805
Don't die on me guys
Rolled 12 (1d20)>>4118805
Rolled 19 (1d20)rolling for Yoji
>+2 You play to your strengths of dexterity and precision>-2 Yoji plays to his strengths of dexterity and precisionYou decide you’ve messed around long enough. If you’re going to spar seriously against Yoji, you need to approach cautiously. You take a guarded stance to match his and approach slowly. As soon as your blades touch, you withdraw at once, studying how Yoji’s stance shifts, how his guard changes. Likewise, he does the same.But Yoji’s the first to find a weakness in your guard. With a series of precise cuts, he hems your defence in and forces your guard into an awkward position before scraping your cheekbone with a flick of his word.“Damn. You win.” You admit.Yoji smiles in reply. “It was closer this time.”…Near the end of the hour, Yoji asks you a seemingly innocent question. “How is Kaguya-sama doing?”Despite how simple the question, you find yourself stumped. How was Kaguya doing? Beneath her tightly controlled public facade, you couldn’t really tell how she was feeling, what she was thinking. And then there was the way Yoji asked. His voice was tinged by a barely-hidden concern.>... You’re quite fond of Kaguya-sama, aren’t you?>She doesn’t seem openly sad.>She’s never openly happy.>I can’t tell for sure.
>>4119099>>She’s never openly happy.
Rolled 8 (1d20)>>4118805
>>4119099>She’s never openly happy.
>>4119099She’s never openly happy
“It’s hard to tell. She’s never openly happy.”“Ah, I see …” Yoji’s face visibly falls, “So it’s the same as the last time I saw her. Don’t know what would have changed in only a few days.”You could have said something to reassure Yoji, promised to him that you cared about Kaguya as much as he did. But you weren’t sure that was true. And what good was promising to safeguard a girl if you couldn’t even see her smile?“Well, please tell me if you see her smile for real, Kentaro. One with genuine happiness behind it. It would mean a lot to me.”“I will.” You nod. That much you could promise.…As soon as you leave the Kendo hall, your solemn attitude slowly evaporates. Your augmented arm feels strangely itchy, a sensation it shouldn’t have been able to feel. You could swear that you could feel the edge where your augments met and melded with your flesh. And there was the growing urge to wash away that discomfort with action, to feel human again in the most primal way possible, in the rush of endorphins and adrenaline pumping through your body. You hadn’t realized how much you realized you missed street life until you learned that something exciting was going down back in the city.You do your best to compose yourself before you face Kaguya-sama again. You knew from using it that you could have an intimidating face at times like this.“Bodyguard-san.” Kaguya’s archery tutor says in mild surprise upon seeing you.“Sorry, am I late?”“No … just on time. You’re usually slightly early.”You see Kaguya’s crouched in the corner, next to a low table with a pitcher of barley tea. So you just missed the Maid … Damn. You couldn’t help but think of a scene with Kaguya in it as anything but picturesque.“Kentaro-kun.” Kaguya politely greets you like always, “Would you like a glass of barley tea?”“It would be much appreciated, Kaguya-sama.”Pouring a glass for you, each one of Kaguya’s movements is refined and elegant as always … except for a slight tremor in her hand from pulling back on a bow taller than she was for an hour straight. The two of you sit for a while. You let the coolness of the tea soothe the itchiness in your body. Kaguya wipes away some sweat from her brow with a delicate pink hankerchief … except when she finishes, you can see it’s stained slightly black.“Is the something the matter, Kentaro-kun?” Kaguya asks, peering at you in a mix of curiosity and mild concern.“What makes Kaguya-sama ask that?”“You look a little more tense than usual. And a little more serious, like you’re thinking about something.” Kaguya explains.
>There’s a conflict about to begin in the city. Nothing too unusual, it just reminded me of my old job.>I’ve recently gained a reason to muster my resolve.>Forgive me … I just didn’t know that it was a tradition in the Muramoto family to pour their subordinates tea.>Forgive me … but do all plutocratic children sweat black?
>>4119402>>There’s a conflict about to begin in the city. Nothing too unusual, it just reminded me of my old job.
>>4119402>There’s a conflict about to begin in the city. Nothing too unusual, it just reminded me of my old job.
>>4119401>>There’s a conflict about to begin in the city. Nothing too unusual, it just reminded me of my old job.
>>4119402>Forgive me … but do all plutocratic children sweat black?
“There’s a conflict about to begin in the city.” You explain, “it’s nothing too unusual, it just reminded me of my old job. Forgive me for concerning you with something so unimportant.”Kaguya nods. “I see … Our enemies may be a topic of no concern to a girl like me, but I would like to know who we are fighting against.”“Does Kaguya-sama really wish to hear of such things?” You ask incredulously.“If it doesn’t trouble you.” Kaguya responds. But her courteous words were lined with steely insistence.“Well, it seems that our enemies this time are the Ishii Conglomerate. You see, they are a rival corporation that’s been very aggressive in the past ....”“Kentaro-kun, you don’t need to tell me about the Ishii.” Kaguya gently stops you from continuing your explanation. “I’ve heard about them from Kyune onee-chan.”“I see … you’re well-educated, Lady Kaguya.”“Thank you.” Kaguya says, “Even if I’m quite sheltered now, I’m still concerned about the state of the city … I remember what it’s like to live there.”“Kaguya-sama, did you use to live in the city?”Abruptly, Kaguya gets up. “I’m sorry, Kentaro-kun, it’s already quite late.. I need to get going now.”Just like that, she avoids your question. And not with the usual grace she spoke with. Did you fluster her? Perhaps you said something you shouldn’t have ...…Usually, between lessons, you and Kaguya don’t talk since she’s preoccupied processing whatever’s in the External Drive she wears while walking. It suited you fine. You weren’t one of those busybodies who needed to talk constantly.Between Kaguya’s archery class and her next class is a short gap for her to return to her suite and clean herself up to a state presentable as the young lady of a Plutocratic family. Which leaves you with an equally short gap to yourself. You usually just spend it lounging inside your quarters.But this time, when you return to your quarters, you hear a rustling sound from your bedroom …>Ignore it, it’s just the maid>Go investigate … but it’s probably the maid>You were warned just earlier to be vigilant. Keep your hand on the hilt of your sword.
>>4119502>You were warned just earlier to be vigilant. Keep your hand on the hilt of your sword.
>>4119502>You were warned just earlier to be vigilant. Keep your hand on the hilt of your sword.It could also be a distraction to keep us away from Kaguya, in which case we should finish it quickly and check on her.
>>4119502>You were warned just earlier to be vigilant. Keep your hand on the hilt of your sword and the other one on your gun>Also use that fancy thermal vision implants of yours.
>>4119502>>You were warned just earlier to be vigilant. Keep your hand on the hilt of your sword.
You activate your HUD’s infrared display and look at your bedroom. Since the walls here were so thin, you could see through them as if they weren’t there. In your bedroom was … a maid, busy folding away something into where your closet should be ...With your hand on the hilt of your sword, you cautiously enter your bedroom. Sure enough, your eyes confirm what your HUD told you: You find a maid folding away some futons into your closet. Your own futon was freshly changed.“Eeek!” She yelps, seeing you in the doorway with your hand on your sword, “I-I wasn’t stealing anything, I swear!”“Wha? No! I just heard some noises and …” Wait, you recognize this maid … “Aren’t you … the one from Monday?”The Maid’s eyes widen in shock. “Oh! Enforcer-san!” Yep. This was definitely the clumsy maid that had spilled your lunch. She bows. “Thank you for not reporting my clumsy actions to my manager.”“Like I said, it was no big deal.” You insist. The Maid giggles at the good-natured exasperation in your voice. “Well, I’m a relatively new employee, so forgive me for being a bit nervous … I’m glad that you turned out to be the friendly type, Enforcer-san.”“Well, you might not believe it, but I only began working here recently too. The day you spilled my lunch was actually my first day in Household”“Is that so? Well then, I must apologize for being such an inconvenience your first day.” The Maid bows again, but this time, there’s a smile on her face. “So? Are you liking life in the manor?”>It’s very comfortable here>It’s mind-numbingly boring here>It’s incredibly formal here. Like something out of a movie.>Well .. at least the other maids aren’t as clumsy as you.
>>4120511>>It’s mind-numbingly boring here
>>4120511>>It’s incredibly formal here. Like something out of a movie.
>>4120511>It’s incredibly formal here. Like something out of a movie.
“It’s incredibly formal here. It’s like I’m on the set for a movie.” You say.“Right? It’s like the set piece for a Jidai Geki!” The Maid smiles in agreement. “Oh yeah, by the way, my name is Akira. Akira Hosoda.”“Kentaro Seido … Sorry, a Jidai-what?” You ask in confusion.“It’s a genre of film, set in pre Meiji-Era Japan.” Akira explains.“I don’t know what the Meiji Era is, so I still have no idea what you’re talking about.” You say, “Are you talking about samurai films?”Akira nods. “Pretty much … although they don’t have to be samurai films. They can also be stories of courtly drama and romance! … Sorry if I’m talking too much, I just really like movies.”“Never what was wrong with a good movie myself.” You say. “I mean, they’re playing on TV all the time, right?”“True, true!” Akira laughs, “Well, I’ll be seeing you around, Seido-kun … I’ll be going back to my work now.” Akira goes back to folding away your futons.…You go back to Kaguya’s side in a better mood than before. Akira’s smile was pretty relaxing, you didn’t know how to describe it. Such simple, cheerful people like her were pretty rare.As you’ve come to do, you hang around during Kaguya’s lesson, lounging on the opposite side of the common room, close enough to catch what her tutor was saying …The Cultural Revitalization Movement was a response to the state of the early 2100s, which to many had lost too many traditions and cultural heritage to the mainstream pseudo-western culture which has come to dominate the world. Although earlier wide scale Cultural Revitalization projects existed before, such as the embrace of the Hanfu movement by what was the People’s Republic of China, what provided the spark and fuel for the Cultural Revitalization Movement was the unique environment of North America and Europe, which at the time was struggling to maintain a cultural identity and stabilize a highly unstable multicultural society at the same time. However, Cultural Revitalization soon became a trapping for the then-young Plutocratic families. The Cultural Revitalization Movement was doubly important for the Plutocratic families, first as to create a sense of cohesion even when spread out internationally, second as to create a public identity beyond raw capitalism, in other words, a sense of history and tradition in a young organization where none had existed before.
Adopted and by Plutocratic families, Cultural Revitalization truly became a worldwide movement. With the replacement of the College education system with the corporate-owned Vocational Academy education system, corporations spread this movement outside the Plutocratic families and to their employees, resulting in old-fashioned systems of morality being enforced throughout the body of entire corporations. Of note among many revitalization movements are the Traditionalists of the Japanese Diaspora and the Conservatives of Europe. However, alongside the Cultural Revitalization Movements were many other identity creating movements, such as the Minimalists and Brutalists which we will be covering next week, and the Transhumanists which we will be covering in the week after …The Tutor drones on for a while, and after a while, you stop listening. Every now and then, you glance over at Kaguya. Every time you look, she’s listening intently and writing down everything the Tutor says. This is how you’ve been spending your days since you became Kaguya’s retainer.But the lesson’s cut unexpectedly short when a maid steps into the room.“It’s time to get ready to see Lady Muramoto, Kaguya-sama.” the Maid says, before bowing and disappearing.“We’ll end here then.” The Tutor says, shutting his textbook and packing up. Kaguya nods. There’s a flash of trepidation on her face before it disappears behind her blank-eyed mask.“We’ll be going back to my room now, Seido-kun.” Kaguya says as soon as you walk over. Her voice sounds smaller than usual.>Ask her if she’s okay>Ask her what’s wrong>Say nothing
>>4121059>Check her schedule to see if there's anything after visiting Lady Muramoto. If there's nothing, politely ask if there's anything she would wish to do after her visit to her mother.>Ask her if she’s okay
>>4121059>Ask her if she’s okay
>>4121059>>Ask her what’s wrong
>>4121059>>Ask her if she’s okay
>>4121059This: >>4121108Also let's look up Akira's dossier. A recent hire could be an infiltrator. If her dossier is fake, we might be able to spot inconsistencies.A word of advice, QM - if you want the players to like an NPC, let them come to it naturally and don't directly say "This NPC is likeable!"
Vote called, writing.>>4121281That's definitely true about NPC's. But in this case, I wasn't trying to force the players to like Akira. I was trying to get across the fact that Kentaro did.But then again, I guess the border between the players and Kentaro is very thin.
“Kaguya-sama …” You gasp in dismay at her forlorn voice.“Is something the matter, Kentaro-kun?” She asks. Of course something’s the matter. Why else would she be speaking like that?“It’s just … are you okay?”“Yes, I’m okay.” Kaguya reassures you entirely unconvincingly, “I just need to do my best … that’s all.”“If you say so, Kaguya-sama.” You reluctantly say.“Thank you for your concern, Kentaro-kun.” Kaguya says in a sincere voice.You follow Kaguya to her room. There, at the entrance, two maids wearing yukatas of a finer cut than usual are waiting.“Kaguya-sama.” They both bow in greeting to Kaguya. “I’ll be putting myself in your hands.” Kaguya says politely, woodenly. “Come back in an hour, Kentaro-kun. This will take a while.”…Your thoughts are in turmoil all the way to the staff lounge, occupied by what was coming for Kaguya this afternoon. A visit to Lady Muramoto. A visit to the woman married to her father. You wonder what the woman was like? How did she treat Kaguya? Was she resentful of her? Why would she even invite Kaguya to share afternoon tea with her?Thank you, Kentaro-kun. You could still hear Kaguya’s voice in your head. Those words, she had meant them. But what had you even done? You had promised to protect her. But how could you protect her from the fragged condition of her family? You weren’t a lawyer or a shrink, dammit!You’re so wrapped up in your thoughts that you don’t notice you’re in the staff lounge until you’ve already sat down and sent an order.“Kentaro-kun! You’re on lunch break?” A cheery voice breaks through your stupor. You look up. It’s Akira, holding a lunch box from the vending machine in her hands.>Invite her to sit down. Maybe she’ll distract you for the time being.>Invite her to sit down. It would be rude to send her away.>Send her away. You’re not in the mood for talking.
>>4121329>>Invite her to sit down. It would be rude to send her away.
>>4121329>Invite her to sit down. It would be rude to send her away.So I noticed certain theme when it comes to employes in this household. They don't really meet high standards you would suspect from them.
>>4121329>Invite her to sit down. It would be rude to send her away.
>>4121329>Invite her to sit down. It would be rude to send her away.>>4121365The problem with high standards is you have to find people matching them and then pay them enough.
“I am, Hosoda-kun. Do you need a seat?”“Sure do.” Akira sits across from you, opening her bento. The meal inside was more in line with what you were used to eating. A compartment full of rice. Freeze-dried cubes of reconstituted meat. A small plastic bowl containing fruit in some syrupy liquid. The smell from Akira’s lunch wafts over to your side of the table. Moist, sweet, and slightly chemical. Probably chock-full of heavy metals. You’d eaten meals like this almost two times a day since you were a child, but since you’ve come to work in Household, you haven’t been this close to having one in front of you. “I like to pretend that these are beef.” Akira confesses, picking up a cube of meat, “Probably half-onions though ...”“Probably.” you agree. Even though you invited her to sit down, you’re still preoccupied with your earlier thoughts about Kaguya.“What did you order, Kentaro-kun?”“Chicken teriyaki. My usual.”“Man, I wish I had kitchen ordering privileges … It must be nice being able to eat fresh food every day ...” Akira pouts, before continuing on a diatribe about her day. “Hey, Kentaro-kun, is something the matter?”“Huh? Why do you say that?” You realize that Akira’s paused from her diatribe and is now staring at you in concern.“You’re looking pretty gloomy …” Akira says. “Rough day?”>You can say that (downplay it)>Can’t really tell you about it, sorry>You don’t need to worry about me>Unload without giving away important details
>>4121454Wasn't part of our job to be on stand-by when Kaguya went to go visit her mother incase the mother tried to hard our charge?
>>4121454>You don’t need to worry about meBetter than the second option in my opinion.
>>4121454>>You can say that (downplay it)>>4121460That's for her birth mother, this one is her father's wife
>>4121454They both call each other -kun? That's pretty strange.>Unload without giving away important details>>4121460Lady Muramoto isn't her mother though. Kaguya is a mistress' daughter.
>People actually pay attention to the shit I writeY-you guys>>4121466Akira's overly friendly. Kentaro is older than her by a decent margin.But I'm not japanese so if it's still improper, feel free to correct me.
>>4121460Kaguya's busy getting dressed. She's not actually seeing Lady Muramoto right now.
>>4121454>You can say that (downplay it)
>>4121476Do we have a cyber/data jack? If we have all our retro game squirreled away in our room, would we happen to have any games on our super future phone with an emulator to play all the classics? Castlevania, Megaman, Mario, Legend of Zelda, MGS5?
>>4121487No one remembers these. But maybe along your travels, you'll find an obsessive, eccentric otaku who has an interest in retro games made over 200 years ago.
>>4121454>You don’t need to worry about meI-I'm okay
>>4121473I'm not Japanese either, but AFAIK -kun is used either towards a subordinate, or towards a young male peer. So this situation isn't impossible, but implies that we and Akira have very different ideas of the hierarchy among the servants.>>4121492Can we at least play our RPGs while we're waiting around?
>>4121516You can have some games downloaded in your cyberbrain, yeah.But just to make it clear, you are going to accompany Kaguya to visit Lady Muramoto.
>>4121454>>Unload without giving away important details
>>4121454>You don’t need to worry about me
I lied, I need to step out for a while.But the vote is still called.
>>4122201Share some of the food?
>>4122201Report back with your findings solder
>>4122229Sure. Can't guarantee it's organic though.>>4122260The local cafe is a good place to write updates.
“Nah, you don’t need to worry about me.” You wave away Akira’s concerns.“Okay, if you say so.” Akira says, unconvinced.The conversation dies at the table.The two of you sit in silence, Akira unsure of what to say and you unwilling to restart the conversation. “You know, this might not be my place to speak …” Akira suddenly says, “... But my Mom always said that if you were ever unsure of what to do, you should think about how you want your actions to turn out. Once you know that, you might see that the way there isn’t as hard to follow as you thought.”“Is that so?” You say. You can’t help but consider the words of Akira’s mother seriously. Were you looking at this all wrong? What were you trying to do?To protect Kaguya. That was what you wanted. But what would a protected Kaguya look like? You don’t know … but you feel like you’re closer to the answer than before.“Thank you, Akira-kun. You’ve given me things to think about.”Akira smiles cheerfully. “Anytime, Kentaro-kun!”“Just one more thing … It’s not Kentaro-kun. Call me either Kentaro-san, or just use my name.”“Aren’t we around the same age though?”“I don’t know about you, but I’ll be turning 26 this year.”“Wah! So old!” Akira the her tongue out of the side of her mouth in embarrassment, “Sorry about that. I guess I’ll call you Kentaro from now on … Hey, your lunch is here!”…You return to the entrance to Kaguya’s room in a much better mood than before. Yes, you could definitely help Kaguya. The question was just how?“Did you have a pleasant break, Bodyguard-san?” You’re greeted at the door by one of those more finely dressed maids from before. By now, you’ve realized that they were the personal maids of someone higher ranking in the family, Kaguya didn’t have any handmaidens of her own.“I did. Now, where’s Lady Kaguya?”“I will tell her you’ve returned.” The Maid bows and disappears into Kaguya’s suite. Minutes later, Kaguya steps out of the doorway.You’re stunned. Kaguya was dressed in a beautiful, soft pink furisode with butterfly-like sleeves. Her face was painted with makeup that was at the same time accentuating and subduing. Accompanying her was the faint scent of some flower you couldn’t recognize. Kaguya looked exquisite, but at the same time, oddly vulnerable. Like a rare oriental orchid, the kind so delicate that you’d be afraid to touch it.Even the most vile brute would hesitate before laying a hand on her.“Let’s get going, Kentaro-kun.” Kaguya says, slowly gliding down the hall, the hem of her furisode and her mother’s two maids trailing behind her.“Y-yes, Kaguya-sama.” Woken from your speechlessness, you fall in line behind her ...…Interlude>Kaguya’s dressing room, four years ago>Hideyori Muramoto’s chambers, five years ago
>>4122380>>Hideyori Muramoto’s chambers, five years ago
Chambers of Hideyori Muramoto2205”Absolutely not! I forbid it! That WHORE’s child will not be living in my home!”“My Love!” The figure in the door begged, his rich, soft voice somewhere between piteous pleading and an opera singer’s charismatic melodies. But the person he was talking to, the woman striding furiously back and forth in his bedroom, was having none of it.“Don’t ‘My Love’ me! How can you say you love me and ask me to live with your street-rat bastard daughter?”“It won’t be so bad, My Love. I promise you won’t even see her. Isn’t the house large enough for the both of you?”“Do you have ANY shame? You’re asking me to live with another woman’s daughter! What’s next? Asking me to share a bed with her whore of a mother?”“No, I would never ask that! But I don’t have a choice about Kaguya-chan! I can’t go against my brother’s wishes.”“You’re a grown man, dammit! Why don’t you act like one! It’s always ‘my brother this’, and ‘my brother that’. Aren’t you my husband as well?”“Of course I am.” The man assured her, “You know I love you … have I asked you for anything in the past? Please. Just cooperate.”“No.” The woman shook her head, makeup-laden tears streaming down her face “No! I won’t be made a FOOL of in my OWN HOME!”“My Love … Please, calm down. For both our sakes ...”“GET OUT!” The woman threw the heavy porcelain vase sitting on her nightstand at the figure in the door, but he only smoothly caught it out of the air and set it down on a nearby table.“I can see that you’re too emotional right now for me to reason with you.” He sneered in a cold voice “Well, woman, let me know when you come to your senses.” The man turned around and walked away ...Interlude Out
You and Kaguya enter a veranda overlooking a lush garden.“Ah! Kaguya-chan, you’re here!” A woman sitting at a small, round table calls out. The woman named Lady Muramoto was a pretty-looking woman, someone who would definitely turn eyes if she walked down the street. But what prettiness she had paled in comparison to the likes of Kaguya and Kyune. And looking closely, her face had the stretched look of someone who had undergone many, many rejuvenation treatments. Plastic surgery and gene therapy could only go so far to hide one’s aging. She was dressed in a multicolored Junihitoe that put even Kaguya’s furisode to shame, but there was a tacky, fake-looking feeling to her look, even though you are sure that her clothing was authentic.“Lady Muramoto.” Kaguya bows respectfully.“You’re so well-behaved, Kaguya-chan!” Lady Muramoto praises her, “But I wish you would call me ‘mother’ … But why don’t you sit down, next to me? Join me for some tea, okay?” Lady Muramoto’s voice gives you shivers down your spine. It’s loaded with a sugary, saccharine sweetness that tried way too hard.Tentatively, Kaguya takes a seat at the small table, laden with an expensive tea set and exotic looking pastries. Sitting across from her were two cherubic-looking children, a brother and sister dressed like dolls, perfect-looking in every way. They were so perfect looking that you couldn’t believe that they were the children of Lady Muramoto … but the resemblance is there. Fussing over them is a proper-looking lady with impeccable posture dressed in a sober-looking blouse and pantskirt.The brother lazily stretches, his porcelain face twisting into a yawn.“Seru, stop fidgeting.” The proper-looking woman scolds him. Sheepishly, he stops and returns to picking at a roll on the plate in front of him. You’re astonished at how easily the children seem to move. It makes Kaguya’s movements seem stiff and wooden in comparison. You realize that they move just like Kyune.“Ah … I see you got a new retainer. What is his name?” Lady Muramoto asks Kaguya.“Seido Kentaro.”“Seido Kentaro …” Lady Muramoto repeats, “And what do you think of him? Does he suit you?”“He does. He’s a good man.” Kaguya replies. “I’m fortunate to have him in my service.”“I’m glad to hear that! It’s such a shame what happened to your last one …” You spot Kaguya’s hands ball up into fists at the mention of Toshi.”Kentaro-kun, was it? Step forwards so I can see you.”“My Lady.” You comply, getting up from where you had been kneeling and stepping forwards to the table.“So tell me, Kentaro-kun. What do you think of Kaguya?” Lady Muramoto asks, folding her hands in her lap and patiently waiting for your answer.
You glance around the table. The two children were lost in their own world. Kaguya stares into her cup of tea, trying not to make eye contact with anyone. And the lady who you assume is the Governess stares avidly at you, curious to your response …>She’s my master. I don’t have much else to say.>It’s … been an honor working for the Muramoto family.>She’s a true daughter of the Muramoto family.>I’ve grown very fond of her in the short time I’ve served her.
>I’ve grown very fond of her in the short time I’ve served her.Wonder how pissed off she'll get if we mention the third option>>4122974You know this is the interesting part. Lady Muramoto acting like this is totally expected for, but why does Kaguya's own birth mother hate her so much?
>>4122980>>She’s my master. I don’t have much else to say.
>>4122980>I’ve grown very fond of her in the short time I’ve served her.
>>4122380Just "Kentaro" is pretty familiar, you know.>>4122974Ah, so the Cultural Revitalization didn't go as far as restore the institute of official mistresses.>>4122980>She’s my master. I don’t have much else to say.No reason to divulge our true feelings I think
>>4122980>She’s my master. I don’t have much else to say.
Rolled 1 (1d2)We're currently in a tie and I wrote half the update and want to get it out tonight so I'm going to roll a 1d2 if no one minds.1 - I've grown very fond of her2 - She's my master, I don't have much else to say
“I’ve grown very fond of her in the short time I’ve served her.” You say truthfully.“Is that so?” Lady Muramoto laughs, “Kaguya-chan, you certainly let your servants speak freely.”“I … Yes, that’s true.” Kaguya’s looking straight down now … was that a blush on her face?“Miss Winslet never tells us she’s fond of us.” Seru sighs, absent-mindedly stirring his tea with a teaspoon.“It’s so sad, right brother dearest?” His sister chimes in.“Be well-mannered children and maybe I will.” The Governess snaps.“Now now,” Lady Muramoto fawns over her children, “I’m sure Winslet-san is very fond of the both of you.”“If only you two would give me more opportunities to show it.” Winslet humphs, taking a sip of tea.“Kaguya-chan, you’re not eating.” Lady Muramoto directs her fawning over to Kaguya. “Try some of the cake, the chocolate was flown over from Germany …”An hour passes of Lady Muramoto fussing over Kaguya and her children. She endlessly bombards Kaguya with questions about her day, her lessons, while Kaguya does her best to answer as quickly as possible without sounding rude. You can see her getting more uncomfortable by the minute.Just then, you hear footsteps in the hall.“Good afternoon, Kyune-sama.” You hear the maids at the doorway say.“Yeah yeah …” Kyune steps onto the veranda, dressed in her school uniform. “Good afternoon, auntie! Yo, Kaguya. Kentaro.”“Kyune-chan?” Lady Muramoto says, “Shouldn’t you be in school right now?”“Skipping.” Kyune explains, reaching over the heads of the children to grab a pastry. Kyune’s rough demeanor and language was a sharp contrast from the courtly mannerisms you had been immersed in until now.“That’s no good, Kyune-chan. What would your mother say if she found out?”Kyune shrugs. “She won’t … Mmm, what is this? Tastes german.” You notice Miss Winslet looking away in disapproval.“Kyune onee-chan is going to get fat.” Seru offhandedly says.“Fatty Kyune onee-chan.” His sister agrees.“Seru! Teru!” Winslet exclaims in utter disapproval.“Watch it, you damn ankle biters.” Kyune warns menacingly, “or do you want me to tickle you until you get snot all over the carpet again?”“What? When did this happen?” Lady Muramoto asks concernedly.“Last summer.” Kyune says.“Kyune onee-chan’s a bully.”“Bully Kyune onee-chan!”“You should be more scared of bullies.” Kyune growls, “For starters, address me as Kyune-sama.”“Okay, Bully Kyune onee-sama ,,, waah! S-stop ruffling my hair.”Kyune snorts. “Whatever … Anyways, you mind if I steal Kaguya, auntie? I promised to help her learn how to dance … and stuff.” Kyune casually places her hand on Kaguya’s head, causing Kaguya to let out a small squeak in surprise.
“S-sure, go on ahead.” Lady Muramoto confusedly gives her permission, unsure of what just happened. You’re just as unsure. Did Kyune really just stride into her aunt’s private afternoon tea, casually claim all the attention in the room, and convince everyone to let her have her way?“Right then. Let’s go then, Kaguya.” Kyune says, striding out the door without waiting for her. Kaguya takes a second to process what’s happening before she gets up and follows after.“Thank you.” Kaguya says as soon as they’re in the hallway.“Don’t mention it.” Kyune says, “I’m just looking forwards to when you can actually dance. Let’s get your gear from your room …”…“So, Kentaro. That was Lady Muramoto’s little court. Pretty disconcerting, right?” Kyune says. Kaguya had disappeared inside her suite to get her dancing gear, leaving the two of you outside, waiting together.>Thank Kyune>Ask her what’s going on with Lady Muramoto>You didn’t expect Kyune to be into dancing
>>4123354>>Ask her what’s going on with Lady Muramoto
>>4123354>You didn’t expect Kyune to be into dancing
>>4123354>Ask her what’s going on with Lady Muramoto
>>4123354>Thank Kyune>Ask her what’s going on with Lady Muramoto
>>4123352BTW that Kyune scene was cute as fuck.
>>4123354>Thank Kyune>You didn’t expect Kyune to be into dancing
“I was surprised with the way Lady Muramoto treated Kaguya.” You say.“What about it?” Kyune asks.“I didn’t expect her to treat Kaguya with so much fondness.” But it didn’t take a genius to tell that it was a false fondness.Kyune shrugs. “In her mind, Auntie knows it isn’t Kaguya’s fault that she was born. So she tries to be understanding. But in her heart ... Well, some people can’t overcome their nature no matter how hard they try. That’s just the way it is.”“I see.” You nod. It was an unfortunate situation. No wonder Kaguya hadn’t wanted to visit Lady Muramoto.“But you know, I think Auntie’s beginning to warm to Kaguya. She can’t help but be charmed by her, Kaguya’s just like that, you know? Still hates her mother’s guts though.”“Really? That’s fortunate.” You were surprised that that would happen.“Auntie really isn’t a vindictive woman … Really, she’s quite caring.” Kyune laughs softly, “She’s the only one other than my mother I can really trust in this family.”“Eh? What about Kaguya?”“Oh, sorry. I was talking in terms of family politics.” Kyune explains, before sighing. “In that sense, Kaguya’s kind of a liability, unfortunately …”“Kyune onee-chan, I’m ready.” Kaguya steps out of her suite>She looks the same except her sleeves are tied back and she’s holding some long hairpins>She’s carrying a long-necked lute … is she going to use that for dancing?>She’s dressed in a hakama with her long hair tied back … Wait, isn’t that her archery uniform?
>>4124375>>She’s carrying a long-necked lute … is she going to use that for dancing?
>>4124375>She’s carrying a long-necked lute … is she going to use that for dancing?
Kaguya is carrying a large, long-necked lute.“Eh? I thought we were going to practise your dancing.” Kyune frowns.“I thought we could try that kokyu-biwa duet you composed instead …” Kaguya innocently replies, as if oblivious that she had misled Kyune.“Geh? I ‘ll have to get my kokyu from my room …” Kyune complains, “Alright, fine. You’ve convinced me.”The two of them relocate to an isolated garden outside the Upper-West Wing. Kyune snags a passing maid’s attention and tells her to get her kokyu from her room.“All right … let’s see how much you’ve improved since I last saw you.”Kaguya bows and kneels, resting her biwa on her lap. It was ridiculous how large the instrument was, it was almost larger than her. She begins plucking at her biwa with a large, triangle-shaped pick. At first, the notes are tenuous, experimentory.“That one’s off.” Kyune tells Kaguya, “Bring it up a semitone.”Kaguya fiddles with the pegs at the head of the lute, then tries the note again. “Better?”“Perfect.” Kyune nods, “Now then … What d’ya got?”Kaguya closes her eyes in concentration. At first, the notes are few and far between, but slowly, the intensity of which they are played increases and increases. Near the end, Kaguya’s strumming fills the courtyard. Barely even moving her dextrous hands, the merest brushing of her pick across the strings of her biwa creates a cascade of droning notes which grows faster and faster and faster until they almost seem to blend into each other in their speed.“Not bad.” Kyune admits once Kaguya finishes, “You’ve been practising?”“Indeed.” Kaguya nods, “I’ve been listening to your composition every night …”A maid comes into the courtyard, carrying an elegant-looking stringed instrument with a bow attached to the strings.“Right, the fun begins now!” Kyune announces, as soon as she has her kokyu on her knee. “You think you can play the biwa part right now, Kaguya?”“I can try.” Kaguya promises.On an unspoken agreement, the two girls begin playing their instruments. An elegant, reserved string melody fills the courtyard, with the sweet, drawn-out sounds of Kyune’s kokyu somehow being perfectly complemented by the lower, more rustic sound of Kaguya’s playing, accentuating Kyune’s melody with single notes in some places, punctuating it with well-placed riffs in others. You notice a slow trickle of maids gather at the edges of the courtyard. As Kyune and Kaguya play, the once-reserved melody gradually grows and swells with emotion until your chest tightens and loosens with the rising and falling of the notes.Eventually, the music slowly fades until the courtyard is completely silent.>Cry>Clap (Roll not to cry)>Stare in bewilderment>Struggle to maintain your composure (Hard roll)
>>4124984>>Clap (Roll not to cry)
>>4124984>>Cry, but in a manly way
Wait...Is this a cyberpunk themed princess guard quest?
>>4125008I never fully read princess guard quest, but I do admit that that's where I stole the idea for this quest from.
>>4124984>Clap (Roll not to cry)
>>4124984>Let out a single manly tear
>>4124984>>4125089>Also claim it's raining if anyone asks.
Please roll 3 1d20s to cry appropriately. DC is 10, you will need one success to succeed.
Rolled 9 (1d20)>>4125098
Rolled 14 (1d20)>>4125098
Rolled 8 (1d20)>>4125098
>>4123380Thanks. We've got to have some levity in this story, don't we?
You only realize that no more music is coming when the sound of maids clapping fills the courtyard.“That was amazing, Kyune-sama, Kaguya-sama.” One of them says, “Do you mind if I post it on Sonanet?”“I’ve got no problems with it,” Kyune waves her hands dismissively, her dignified music-playing self gone and back to her usual punkish persona. “Do you, Kaguya?”“Nope.” Kaguya shakes her head.“Well, you have our go-ahead then!”“Thank you Kyune-sama, Kaguya-sama.” The maid bows and scampers off.“Hey, is it okay if we do so as well?” Soon, the courtyard is inundated with requests for permission to upload Kyune and Kaguya’s performance. You get another good view of how Kyune could dominate large groups of people with her charisma as she snarks and jokes her way through the gathered crowd, one hand on her hip, the other resting reassuringly on Kaguya’s shoulder. And Kaguya looks truly relaxed for the first time you’ve seen her. She even had a slight smile, but even the slightest smile on her face was radiant. How long had that smile been on her face? You realize that Kaguya had been smiling the entire time during her and Kyune’s duet.“See you later Kaguya. Kentaro.” Kyune says as she ambles off on her own business. The crowd was beginning to disperse. At this point, Kaguya’s day was finished. You hadn’t realized, but the performance had been over two hours long.“Kentaro-kun, you’re crying …” Kaguya observes as soon as the two of you are alone.“Am I?” You say in surprise. You wipe the corners of your eyes with your finger, finding a single teardrop making its way down your cheek. “I didn’t realize.”“Is something the matter, Kentaro-kun?”“No, no.” You reassure her, “But Kaguya-sama, you’re smiling.”“Am I?” Kaguya says in surprise. “I-I did not know that such a special thing ...”You can’t help but smile yourself. “It is.” You reassure her.>Offer to carry her Biwa>Affectionately pat her on the head>Simply accompany her back to her suite
That's my last update for today. I like my weekends off, so the next update won't be until the end of the weekend. I hope you're enjoying this quest so far.
>>4125224>>Offer to carry her Biwa
>>4125224>Offer to carry her BiwaRead over our contract as her body guard. We are also her retainer are we not? We get payed to look after her interests.
>>4125224>Offer to carry her Biwa
>>4125224>>Offer to carry her BiwaMight as well...
Rolled 64 (1d100)>>4125224Rolling Perception. You know in case theres any Hidden Assassins that'll come out of the floor, garbage, or even the cracks in the walls.
Rolled 17 (1d20)>>4125224Oops. I forgot we use d20's
>>4125228thanks for running
“Here, let me carry your biwa. It’s quite a load for you, Kaguya-sama, isn’t it?” You offer, stretching out both hands.Reluctantly accepting, Kaguya gingerly places the biwa in your grasp. “Please be careful with it, Kentaro-kun. It’s a very delicate instrument.”“I will.” You promise, lifting it by the body. The instrument, big as it is. feels extremely light. To you, it seems almost weightless. But as soon as you lift it out of her grasp, Kaguya, who was slightly bent over, straightens her posture and breathes out in relief.“Thank you.” Kaguya says.“It’s no trouble at all.”…You end up carrying the biwa all the way to Kaguya’s room, where she takes it back from you and says she’ll handle it from there. And that was the end of the day. You return to your quarters, satisfied with how things had ended today. For the first time, Kaguya had seemed happy.But your own day was not over just yet. You still had things to do. For the past few days, you’ve been doing your own investigations into Toshi’s disappearance. You’ve been exchanging messages with a private investigator acquaintance of yours and finally, you’ve arranged a meeting in cyberspace tonight. You pull a cord from the dataport in the headboard of your bed and plug it into the jack at the base of your neck. You make yourself comfortable. Then, you close your eyes …Cyberbar theme - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5NFPy3atAgWhen you open them again, you’re sitting in a crowded, dingy-feeling bar, the kind that was popular down streetside. Electronica music blares in the background. A variety of different avatars fill the room, from normal-looking standard human ones to more exotic animal-featured avatars to strange clusters of abstract geometric shapes floating in tandem. Your own avatar looks the same as you do in real life, you don’t have the money to afford a custom avatar painstakingly crafted by a 3d artist. And because you weren’t on official business, you weren’t using the blade-like carbon material avatars that Muramoto provided all it’s employees.“I’ll have a beer please.” You snag a passing scantily-clad, holographic waitress.“That will be 2 tokens.” The holowaitress robotically says,, “It is only 10 tokens to undress me.”“That won’t be necessary.” You say, transferring 2 tokens to the holowaitress’ inventory. A foamy glass of beer materializes in its hands.“Please enjoy.” It says.“Thank you.”
You take a sip from your glass, staring at the holowaitress’ behind as it sashays away. Everything was half a step away from reality here. The beer tasted almost real enough to be enjoyable. The holowaitress moved just human enough to be alluring. You had to be careful to not get addicted to being here. Living here felt almost exactly like living in the real world. In many cases, it was more enjoyable. When you had worked as an enforcer, you had worked in multiple jobs where you’d gone after people in debt to Muramoto Corporations who had become lost in cyberspace. You would never forget the looks of shock and horror on their faces when they had their jacks pulled forcefully from their skulls, when they realized that they were back and trapped in the real world.You’ve almost completely made your way through your beer when your acquaintance appears. His avatar is an eyeless figure with pale, smooth skin dressed in a matte-brown trenchcoat and trilby. You know him by the name of Farukasu.“Kentaro! It’s been a while!” Farukasu says in an amiable tone, sitting down. Disturbingly, his mouth doesn’t seem to move even when you hear his words “When was the last time … the banker job?”“The banker job, yeah.” You affirm.“Bourbon. Straight.” He tells the nearest holowaitress.“That will be 2 tokens. It is only 10 tokens to undress me.”“Why don’t you take off your top, dear?”Obligingly, the holowaitress performs a sensuous stripping action. From your point of view, it remains fully clothed, but Farukasu appreciatively stares at it’s chest.“It is only 25 tokens for me to perform a dance.”“No, no.” Farukasu declines, “I’ve kept my friend waiting long enough, haven’t I?” You wait patiently as he dismisses the waitress. “Sorry about that … So you said you’re trying to track down someone, right?”“Less track them down and more find out why they disappeared.” You explain.Farukasu nods. “I see. Well, as interesting as that sounds, I’m currently working on my own cases so you’ll need to do your snooping on your own. However, if you want to conduct investigations in cyberspace, you’ll need a guide. The least I can do is introduce you to a few contacts. How does that sound?”“Sounds good to me, Farukasu. Who do you have in mind?”“Well, if you’re looking for a real veteran of cyberspace, you should talk to Lady Jeshika. Her rates are pretty high though.”“How high?”“Around 1500 ‘creds for a week-long investigation.”You whistle. That was expensive, almost out of the question. You would have to dig into your personal savings to afford that. “Are all netrunners this expensive, Farukasu?”“There’s an up-and-coming netrunner by the name of Neon. Not exactly a rookie, but not really experienced either. However, she’s never failed a job. Her rate’s only 22 ‘creds an hour.”
That was more reasonable, but you’d definitely be broke if the investigation took too long. “Anyone cheaper?”Farukasu considers this for a second. “Well, I know a cheap amateur named Kayi, but she’ll definitely be more adept on the net than you. If you’re willing to consider her, she’s only 10 ‘creds an hour. The thing is, she only works late at night, so if you value your sleep, well, you’re out of luck.”“I see.” You nod. Technically, you didn’t really need to sleep anymore, you just felt like shit if you didn’t. “Well, as soon as you can, please introduce me to …”>Lady Jeshika, the veteran netrunner>Neon, the up-and-coming hotshot>Kayi, the cheap amateur
>>4129647>Neon, the up-and-coming hotshot
>>4129647>>Neon, the up-and-coming hotshot
>>4129647> Lady Jeshika, the veteran netrunner
>>4129647>Neon, the up-and-coming hotshotIs netrunning a female profession in the neon punkness of the far future?
>>4130389Mysteriously, females attract a lot more attention in cyberspace no matter the profession.
“Please introduce me to Neon.” You decide. This investigation was important to you, and possibly Kaguya. You didn’t want to leave it in the hands of an amateur. But at the same time, you simply didn’t have the money to afford a veteran netrunner like Lady Jeshika. Neon would be a suitable middle-ground, barely affordable, but reliable.“Right then, please follow me.” Farukasu gets up and walks to the door of the bar. He steps through and you follow. As soon as you do, you find yourself on a crowded dance floor. In front of you flash the words “Grima Masquerade Virtual Club and Bar.” The sound of techno emanated from the very air around you. Multicolored beams of light from the ceiling cast eclectic shadows over the dance floor and the bodies of the people in it.“‘Scuse me.” Farukasu tries to push his way through the crowd of people. But suddenly, the two of you are almost knocked to your feet by a sudden surge in the crowd pulling back to form a circle. You push yourself to the front in time to see an ensuing dance-off. In the center of the circle was a trim girl dressed in a clubbing outfit too delicate looking to last a second outside, with electric-blue hair streaked with bubblegum pink, and a confident smirk on her face. Her opponent, a punk with a dark purple mohawk almost half a meter tall, was struggling to keep up.“That’s Neon.” Farukasu says, gesturing at the girl. Neon was massacring her opponent. Even though he was giving an respectable effort, he just couldn’t keep up with Neon, who was clearly in her natural element. Her confident moves radiated spunk and attitude with every movement. Eventually, he was forced to give up, holding up a palm in defeat.Neon shooes her victim away with a flick of his hands. “Thanks for the drink, but next time, make sure you can keep up with the girls you try to hit on.” She teases haughtily, to the laughter of the crowd around her, “Now, who’s next?”>Challenge Neon. Maybe you can impress her. (Hard Roll)>Ask Farukasu to get her attention. Maybe he can get her off the dance floor so you can talk business.>Wait for the dance-off to finish. You’ll be able to talk to her once she’s done.
>>4130485>Challenge Neon. Maybe you can impress her. (Hard Roll)why the fuck not.
>>4130485>>Wait for the dance-off to finish. You’ll be able to talk to her once she’s done.
>>4130485>Ask Farukasu to get her attention. Maybe he can get her off the dance floor so you can talk business.If we challenge her and fail miserably, our working relationship could suffer. Better not risk it.
>>4130545What working relationship, and how would it suffer? Worst possible outcome? She thinks Kentaro's dancing is sub-par. Best case in my opinion?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CcWqo5UsXyg
>>4130565Worst case she thinks we're an overconfident moron who considers himself cool and lacks any self-awareness of his own lameness. The kind of person most susceptible to scams.
>>4130570And this is also the most probable case, because (Hard Roll)
>>4130485>Challenge Neon. Maybe you can impress her. (Hard Roll)
Three roles of a 1d20 please. You will need three successes.
Rolled 9 (1d20)>>4130770
Rolled 3 (1d20)>>4130770
Rolled 11 (1d20)>>4130770Ooof cmon dice
>>4130824Sorry bois my luck was not enough Anyways what was a success? DC?
>>4130828You're rolling against the character in question's roll.
>>4130824You saved us from being a total embarrasment to the Muramoto Corp. Now they will allow us to commit seppuku instead of just crucifying us.
>>4130837Clearly we need to take dance lessons
Rolled 8 (1d20)Rolling for Neon
>-2 Neon plays to her strengths of club dancing>1 Success, Kentaro does his pitiful bestDance theme - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_3sdIEhkNAYou don’t know why, but you find yourself stepping forwards into the circle. It wasn’t that you were bumped, it was just … who did this amateur girl think she was. Did she really think she was that impressive? Strutting around on this digital dance floor like she owned it? You’d show her the sharpened skills of a veteran of the streetside clubbing scene.Neon surveys you haughtily. “Aren’t you a bit too old for this, grandpa? Better sit back down before your arthritis starts acting up.”Grandpa? Was she calling you old? The last time you checked, you were only 28. Well, you’d play along. “Snooty brats like you should be careful of tiring themselves out before bedtime. Does your mother know you’re out?”“Very funny, Gramps. Let’s see you can dance as well as you can talk.” As soon as the music starts picking up, Neon starts dancing, forcing you to join her or completely embarrass her. You might not look like it, but you were a pretty good dancer. You knew how to have fun. Many a night between assignments, you’ve gotten a taste of the streetside nightlife.But Neon … she was a completely different thing entirely. You can’t help but notice how she moved completely in sync with the beat, how her electric blue hair exploded in a halo of chemically colored streamers with every headbanging, how … her clothing showed off way too much skin. How … her pale, bared skin was the perfect canvas for the rainbow of patterns the strobe lights cast, one minute night blue, the next passionate red. Anyone insane enough to wear clothes like that in the real world would have multiple melanomas within the week … Wow, every movement she made was both easily confident and sexily sensuous … Frag it, you were getting distracted! How were you supposed to dance properly without noticing how Neon had curves in only and all the right places … dammit!Eventually you lose the rhythm and come to a halt. Neon stops in the middle of a twirl as soon as you stop. “Giving up so soon, Gramps?” She laughs, “Are you sure you can’t even continue for one more song? I’ll even let you choose the song this time …”>Fine, this time you’ll show her. (Song suggestions?)>You’re done. Admit that Neon owns the dance floor.
Rolled 13 (1d20)Are we feeling lucky bois?Rolling to test luck
>>4131566If you're going be here, please vote. Also, please don't roll unless I call for one.
>>4131346>You’re done.Don’t have any sick beats that could work off the top of my head.
>>4131346We're feeling lucky. Request songs that are old school.https://youtu.be/ArgjJhBY6Y8
>>4131346>Fine, this time you’ll show her.Choose something that would allow us to use our precision augs to our advantage.
>>4132121Kentaro isn't that knowledgeable about the ins and outs of dancing and songs. That being said, I'm willing to give a bonus for dancing to a song you're familiar with and have danced to many times.
>>4132138I won't believe that we never used our augs to do a sick robot dance.
>>4132146You definitely have, it might even be your saving grace from being an average dancer. You just never paid attention to min-maxing the song beat/rhythm to your dance.
Going with challenging Neon again. Writing.
“Fine by me.” You growl. You would accept Neon’s generosity and make her regret it. “Have you ever heard of ‘So am I’ by Ava Max?”“Wait a ‘sec, I’m looking it up … aand like I thought, it’s retro as … fry, from 2019? Damn, Gramps, I thought you were old, but not that old …”“All the music nowadays sounds the same. I’ll teach you to respect the classics!”>3 rolls of 1d20 please. You will need 3 successes.
Rolled 3 (1d20)>>4132161
Rolled 13 (1d20)>>4132161Respect!
Come on anon! We need a miracle! Nat 20 aaaaaaaaah!
Rolled 17 (1d20)Fuck fucked up the dice syntax!
Rolled 16 (1d20)Rolling for Neon
>>4132240Pwnd.I told you so.
>>4132240Can you remind me how this rolling system works? It's not best of three, but 3 rolls against 1 roll/rolled threshold? 1 fail+2 success is a normal success, 2 fails+1 success is a normal fail, 3 fails+0 success is a critical failure, 0 fails+3 successes is a critical success.Is that how this system works?
>>4132251The number of rolls that are needed to beat an NPC's roll depend on the difficulty. If you're opponent is inferior, 1 success is counted as a success and 0 is a stalemate. If your opponent is a peer, 2 successes is counted as a success and 1 is a stalemate. If your opponent is superior, you need 3 successes with 2 being a tie.A 1 is automatically a critical fail no matter what else is rolled while a 20 is a critical success no matter what else is rolled.
>+1 Kentaro dances to a familiar song>-2 Neon plays to her strengths of club dancing>0 successes“I’d like to see an old geezer like you try to teach me anything!” Neon pokes her tongue at you. “‘So am I’ by Ava Max, you said?”With a snap of her fingers, the music changes. Neon immediately begins gyrating, showing off just how lithe and flexible she was. But you weren’t going to be distracted by the wiles of a woman who looked like she was almost a decade your junior! You’d match her move for move!…Minutes later, you find yourself collapsed and exhausted on the dance floor, with Neon standing above you.“W-what happened?” you ask in confusion. But you knew exactly what happened. You had tried to use your precision augs to pull off a sick cyborg dance. But Neon had, matched you move for move. The harder you tried to keep up, the harder it got for you ...“You lost, gramps.” Neon states matter-of-factly, without a hint of teasing or derision. “It seems you’re a new to the cyberspace dance floor. For a newb, you made an impressive first effort.”“I-I’m not new to dancing!” You protest, “I’ve been hitting the streetside scene since you were probably still in school!”“Careful Gramps, you’re letting your inexperience show.” Neon laughs again. But this time, the laugh is friendly.“W-what do you mean?” You pant, trying to regain your breath as you drag yourself into an upright position. Frag it, you felt tired after that dance.“You think that’s air you’re breathing?” Neon asks. She makes a broad gesture at the space around you. “You think that augments have anything to do with my being more skilled or more stylish than you … In this place?” Neon offers you a hand. “Get up, Gramps. There’s no shame in your defeat tonight.”>Accept her offer, let her help you up.>Struggle to your feet on your own.
>>4132257So was this a tie or a success on our part?
>>4132272Neon is a better dancer than you in this setting, so because you only have one success, it's a failure.
>>4132271>Accept her offer, let her help you up.
>>4132271>Accept her offer, let her help you up.So what is it? Just skill? Cyberspace wizardry?
>>4132271>Accept her offer, let her help you up.>>4132317Did I really live to see the time when the reference in the end of the QM's post wouldn't be understood?Am I old?
>>4132271>>Accept her offer, let her help you up.
>>4132387>I got the reference to the Matrix, granted it was more due to context than anything but still
You grab your hand and let Neon pull you to your feet. “Thank you. It was my total defeat.”Neon proudly flips her hair. “Of course it was! Maybe challenge me again on a day where your arthritis isn’t so bad, Gramps … Now who’s next?”...“That surprised me.” Farukasu tells you as you wander away from the dance floor. “Didn’t know you were such a good dancer, Kentaro … ”“Hey, I still lost!” You laugh.“Right, right.” Farukasu says, “But that Neon is a real piece of work.”“That’s true … anyways, when are you going to introduce me to her as a client?”“Soon enough.” Farukasu promises, guiding you into a back room lounge. “We’ll wait here. She’ll come … eventually ...”And sure enough, not a minute after you’ve sat down, Neon enters the room. “Queen of the dance floor as usual, I see …” Farukasu greets. “Thank you!” Neon smiles, “Well, I came as soon as I realized you were waiting for me.” “You’ve already met my friend here, I think.” Farukasu introduces you.“That’s right. Didn’t expect to see you so soon again tonight, Gramps!”“This is the client I promised to introduce you to.”“I see …” Neon nods, “Dancing while on business … why can’t you be that fun, Farukasu?”“No one can be as fun as you, Neon.” Farukasu continues his train of shameless flattery.“Aww, stop, you’re flattering me!” Neon laughs, “Anyways, I never got your name, Gramps … Wait, wait, wait! I hope you’re not about to use your real name. Well, as a word of warning to someone new to Cyberspace, never use your real name.”>What is Kentaro’s alias?
>>4133340>>What is Kentaro’s alias?Genji.
I like Kiryu and Urashima the most so vote between the two.
>>4134287Unless this will have far-reaching ramifications imho you should just roll.
>>4134300If there aren't any votes by the time I have an opportunity to write another update, I will.Honestly, I expected players to be more creative than using a Japanese name to replace another Japanese name. If you think of something really creative, I'll still accept votes for it.
>>4134312>Into acronym for ''Im not that old'
>>4134287>I'll revote Urashima though
>>4134320>>4134312Okay switching to this!
>>4134320>>4134324May I suggest Iato, or 'Ya-2' for 'I ain't that old'?
>>4134356That's a bit too many layers of indirection for my taste.
>>4134356Im ok with it
>>4134356Sticking with Kiryu because why not. If anything, my second suggestion would be Case.
“Call me … Into.” You decide.“Into? Into what?” Neon asks.“I’m. Not. That. Old.” You spell it out for her.“Oho? Your taste in music begs to differ.” Neon mischievously says, “Into is such a strange name … do you mind if I call you In2?”At Neon’s words, the abbreviation ‘In2’ flashed in the air. You sigh.“I won’t be able to stop you, will I?”“Well, I’m beholden to my clients as a professional,” Neon says, “But you’re really not that old, you’ll be willing to play along with us young’uns without being too uptight, right, In2? If you really don’t like it, I can sweeten the deal by calling you In2-sama ...”“All right, all right.” You surrender. “But it’s written ‘Into’, understand?”“Okay okay, In2-sama.” Somehow, whenever you and Neon speak, you can tell how the words are spelled. It was just another part of the fiber of cyberspace. “Right, so now we’ve gotten that out of the way, let me properly introduce myself. I’m Neon, pro netrunner and queen of the dance floor.”“I’m Into. I’ll be relying on your guidance while I’m in cyberspace.” The two of you shake hands.“Right, well I can see that you’re about to get onto confidential business, so I’ll take my leave.” Farukasu says, getting up and bowing curtly.“See ya!” Neon waves goodbye, “Thanks for bringing me another client!”“No trouble at all …” Farukasu says, leaving.“So In2-sama …” Neon rests her chin on her hands, “Now that we have some privacy, what kind of job are we looking at?”“I’m looking for a man who went missing …”>Divulge as little information as possible, refuse to give more>Divulge as much information is needed>Get the whole picture across, hide no detail>Write-in (Highly encouraged)
>>4134857>>Divulge as much information is needed
>>4134857>A man went missing. More than where he is, I'm interested in how and why it happened.>Divulge as much information as needed, but not anything that can point to us working for the Muramoto
>>4135522This.>>4134857It goes without saying that what we tell her is confidential and only between the two of us. Does that make us an SR Johnson?
>>4135591No, it makes you a Mr Tanaka
>>4135618Oh right because we're in Japan.
>>4135624Lorewise, Noir's on an undisclosed island in the South China Sea
You pause, considering, choosing your words carefully. “This man was an employee of the Muramoto Family, a … bodyguard working inside their estate by the name of Matsuzaki Toshi. Eight days ago, he disappeared for unknown reasons, and attempts to locate him were unsuccessful. However, rather than locating him, I’m more interested in how and why he disappeared.”“I see …” Neon nods as if she understands you perfectly. “And would you tell me if I asked what your relation to this ‘Toshi’ fellow was?”“That’s confidential.” You say flatly.“Understood.” Neon says, but with a smirk on her face. “You know, I’ve done business with your type before. Being more concerned with the circumstances of his disappearance than tracking him down … Someone’s dissatisfied with why he disappeared … It’s personal, isn’t it? ”“You could say that.” You admit.“You know, you would do well to have more subtlety when engaging with this kind of business, In2.” Neon teases you, “You’re not doing anything to mask your device signature, I can clearly read the model of cyberbrain you’re using. Hell, I could probably trace your location right here. And your Avatar … I’m pretty sure that’s just a plain ol’ projection of your real world self. You’re not doing anything to safeguard your identity … and as my client, that’s a big risk on my end. Tsk tsk tsk.”“Unfortunately, there’s not much I can do on my end.” You apologize.“Ahhh … I understand. I live on a limited budget as well.” Neon seems to be showing off how much she could deduct from your responses. “Well, since you’re my client and I’ll be guiding you all across Noir’s cyberspace, I’m willing to cut you a deal. I have a custom VPN program and a 3d artist friend who can cobble together an avatar for cheap …I can introduce you to these for only a 100 sincred bonus. You’re risking me as well if you continue waltzing around in your current setup. What do you say?”>Accept Neon’s deal. >Decline Neon’s deal>Haggle (Haggle roll)
>>4135677>Accept the VPN, but not the avatar>Get a free 3d editor and make a plain sphere, optionally with a smiley face. It shouldn't be that hard.
>>4135687It's actually impossible to have non-system supported avatar that isn't at least humanoid>Inb4 you mentioned geometric shape avatarsThere's a specific reason those exist the way they are.
>>4135695>It's actually impossible to have non-system supported avatar that isn't at least humanoidCyberpunk future sure is oppressive!
>>4135718At least big business is unregulated
>>4135677>>Accept Neon’s deal.
>>4135677>Accept Neon’s deal.
“That’s very generous of you.” You admit.“You betcha! But anything for a client, ya know?” A notification pops up in your HUD. Download recieved. Allow/Ignore? “There’s the VPN. I’ll make an appointment with my friend, alright? When are you available for another meeting?”You consider this. Your nighttime schedule was pretty light. “Two days from now.” You decide.“Two days, huh? That’s fine. We’ll meet in the same place, alright?”“Agreed.” The two of you shake hands.“I’ll be returning to the dance floor now.” Neon says, “See ya around, In2 …”You wander back into the nightclub’s main room, wondering how to spend your time. You could try your luck on the dance floor again. Or maybe check out the club’s bar. Or you could leave the nightclub and load one of your RPG’s instead. But all your deliberation is rendered useless as soon as you hear someone knocking on your door in the real world. The out-of-place sound reverberates through the virtual environment, but no one else reacts to it. That, and you were getting feedback from your auditory sensors, not just the auditory centers of your cyberbrain. You sigh. That would be the end of tonight then.You blink and you’re back in the real world. You pull the cable from your jack and get out of bed, before hastily dressing yourself and going to your front door.You’re mildly surprised to find the Governess, Miss Winslet, just outside your door.“Good evening, Mr Seido.” She politely greets you.“Evening, Winslet-san.” You reply back hesitantly. What did the Governess of Lord Muramoto’s children want with you?>Ask her why she’s visiting you so late in the evening.>Invite her in, it would be rude to keep her outside.>Turn her away. You don’t have time for unexpected visitors.
>>4135755>>Invite her in, it would be rude to keep her outside.
>>4135755>Invite her in, it would be rude to keep her outside.
“Would you like to come in? I don’t want to leave you in the doorway …”Winslet smiles graciously at your invitation. “I’d be delighted to, Mr Seido.” Winslet allows you to sit her down in your living room. Winslet gave off the feeling of a very prim and proper woman, a lady. Every motion was both dignified and subdued, graceful in it’s control and restraint.“Can I get you anything to drink?” You ask. That was what you were supposed to ask when you found a lady sitting in your living room right?“Oh, anything you have will be fine.” Winslet says. Okay. So far, you haven’t committed a breach of manners. You search through your cupboards … wow, they were well stocked. Muramoto’s housekeeping never disappointed.>Offer Winslet a soft drink. Everyone drinks those.>Offer Winslet some tea … not that you’ve ever made any before (Requires a roll)>Offer Winslet some instant tea. No one can even tell the difference.>Offer Winslet some sake. Can’t go wrong with that.
>>4137003>>Offer Winslet some sake. Can’t go wrong with that.
>>4137003>>Offer Winslet some tea … not that you’ve ever made any before (Requires a roll)
>>4137003>Offer Winslet some tea … not that you’ve ever made any before (Requires a roll)
>>4137003>Offer Winslet a soft drink. Everyone drinks those.>Apologize for not being able to offer her tea prepared to her tastes.Not the situation for sake.
“I hope this is enough …” You say, setting a bottle and two glasses down on the coffee table.“Oh, it’s more than enough.” Winslet reassures you. “I’ve never been a heavy drinker. I could never tell the difference between what’s good and what’s bad …”“Really?” You sigh in relief, “I could never tell the difference either.” You pour a small measure of sake into Winslet’s glass. You’re struck by how trusting Winslet is of you, despite barely knowing you. Down in the city, a woman would never accept a drink from anyone but the closest of her friends. The danger of there being something in the drink was just too high. Again, you’re struck by how different life was for people here.Winslet takes a delicate sip of her sake before speaking. “So Mr Seido. Is work in the Household suiting you?”“It’s a bit dull compared to what I was doing beforehand … But it’s much more comfortable.” You wave your hand at your surroundings, “I could have saved for years and I still would never have dreamed of living in a room this nice … But well, look at me now.”“I see.” Winslet nods, “I assume you were in a similar vein of work beforehand though?”You shake your head. “Enforcement work. Not bodyguard work.”“Pardon me if the difference between the two eludes me … But I do suppose one involves much less travel.” Winslet muses, making you laugh.“That’s true … My current job sometimes leaves me feeling like a fat, old cat which just lazes around all day ...”“An evocative metaphor.” Winslet says, “That isn’t an entirely disagreeable way to be left by one’s job … But speaking of your job, what do you think of the Lady Kaguya? You spend most of your day at her side, after all …”>I try to be professional about my work. So far, she hasn’t caused any problems.>She’s the kind of girl that you can’t help but be fond of.>For what reason are you asking this question?>You’ve worked in this household longer. What do you think of Kaguya?
The thread's faster than usual. Is it because everyone's being quarantined?
>>4137537Hmm maybe. >She's the kind of that you can't help but be fond of.>You,ve worked in this household longer. What do you think of Kaguya?
>>4137534>>She’s the kind of girl that you can’t help but be fond of.>>For what reason are you asking this question?>>You’ve worked in this household longer. What do you think of Kaguya?
>>4137534>She’s the kind of girl that you can’t help but be fond of.>You’ve worked in this household longer. What do you think of Kaguya?
>>4137534>a bit of professionalism in addition to helping her emotionally if need be
“She’s the kind of girl you can’t help but be fond of.” You tell Winslet honestly.“Ah, yes. Those gene-enhanced features make her look quite precious, don’t they? Those large eyes, that natural grace … Features virtually designed to trigger one’s protective instinct.” Winslet shakes her head. “Mr Muramoto’s natural children are exactly the same way, but it doesn’t stop them from being exasperating every day.”Winslet huffs and takes a noticeably larger sip of sake. You conscientiously refill her empty glass. “Seru and Teru were pretty cute when I saw them …” You say. Adorable was an understatement. The two of them had been the most perfect, doll-like children you had ever seen.“Well, Mr Seido, the longer and more Plutocratic children you’ve worked with, the more you realize that for all their seeming perfectness, they are just as prone to bad behavior and irreverence of proper social behavior than any other child. More so even, as they are often very strong-willed … But at the end of the day, you can’t stay angry with them. It might actually be biologically impossible.”“I’m lucky that Kaguya is well behaved.” You evenly say, “But you’ve worked in this household longer than I have. You probably know her better than I do.”Winslet shakes her head. “Unfortunately, I don’t. Most of my time is spent with Mr Muramoto’s young children, I rarely see that girl. And my role concerning her is merely supervisory.” When Winslet refers to Kaguya, her voice becomes noticeably colder.>Why doesn’t Kaguya have a governess then?>Have you worked with many Plutocratic children in the past?>It seems strange that you were hired to be the governess in the first place.>Any other questions for Winslet
>>4137747>Why doesn’t Kaguya have a governess then?>Have you worked with many Plutocratic children in the past?>And what do you mean by "natural" children?
>>4137756>tfw when you realize natural children doesn't mean what you thought it meant.Yeah, disregard that
>>4137769Damn, I thought I cleverly found a subtle clue...
>>4137747>Have you worked with many Plutocratic children in the past?
“Have you worked with many Plutocratic children in the past then?” You ask, steering the conversation away from what seemed like an unpleasant topic.But Winslet seems to notice, raising her eyebrow. But she still indulges you. “Yes, as a matter of fact. I had a long career in Europe, primarily in Britain, before being invited here by Mr Muramoto. I’m quite well-known in the industry for governesses trained to handle Plutocratic children.”“Are they that different from regular children?” You ask. You wonder how old Winslet was. She looked barely older than you. But at the same time, she claimed to have a long career. You could never tell how old someone above a certain income bracket was.“Oh yes, quite.” Winslet replies, “They are much more intelligent, and much more cunning. They tend to be much more strong-willed as well. They are also much more energetic than the average child, and demand much more energy from you as a result. And they are much more stable mentally. If you see one crying, you’re never sure if it’s on purpose or not.”“Winslet-san, what you say makes it sound like you don’t like working with them at all.” You point out.Winslet sighs again. “It’s hard to remember when you’re picking up after them, but at the end of the day, you can’t help but find other children … dull. You’ll never be as challenged as being tasked with helping raise Plutocratic children.”You think back to Kaguya. As sad as she ever seemed, you’ve never seen her cry once. If anything, she just became more withdrawn. You couldn’t help but like her from the beginning despite barely even knowing her at the time. But accompanying her never proved difficult. You wonder if Kaguya was more difficult as a child. What had Kaguya’s past been like?“Thank you for visiting, Winslet-san.” You say. “I’ve learned a lot from this conversation.”“Well, it’s only polite to pay social visits to newcomers in the neighbourhood.” Winslet says. She takes one last drink of sake. “Well, I should be going now. I’m glad you’re taking well to your new job, Mr Seido.”“Thank you for visiting.” You say.As soon as Winslet is out your front door, you let out a tired sigh. You walk over to your dresser and pull out an external drive. You sigh again as your RPG loads. Tonight had been a long night.End of ThreadExtra Scenes>Kyune and Lady Muramoto, five years ago>Akira comes home
This seemed like a good place to end the thread. But I'll be lurking. In lieu of the end of last thread, post songs that would fit as character themes. I'll start.>Kaguyahttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuFkkrpks_g&feature=youtu.be
>>4138711>Akira comes homeThanks for running
>>4138711Thabnks for running!>Kyune and Lady Muramoto, five years ago
>>4138723>That musicWell of fucking course. Though our Kaguya seems to be a much more pleasant person.
>>4138711>Kyune and Lady Muramoto, five years ago
Extra Scene 002Kyune stared at the sobbing figure of her aunt. She had come to her aunt’s suite, hoping to play with little Seru, and maybe to cajole a few sweets. But instead, she found her aunt slumped over the low table in her suite’s living room.Lady Muramoto raised her head, catching sight of the slight figure of her niece, dressed in the old-fashioned school uniform of the neighbouring high school, with a bokken slung over her shoulder.“Oh, Kyune-chan … I’m afraid you caught Auntie at a bad time ... ” As much as she wanted to turn Kyune away, she just couldn’t. There was something about that childish face that demanded her attention.Inwardly, Kyune was irked at being talked to like a child. But then again, she looked quite childish for her age. “What’s the matter. Is something wrong Auntie?” She asked.“Oh, it’s nothing that Kyune-chan needs to worry about.” Her Aunt reassured her, hurriedly wiping away the tears in the corners of her eyes.Kyune silently stood in the doorway without doing anything. She watched as her Aunt slowly sank back into a depressed stupor. Then she set down her bokken, quietly walked up to her aunt, and hugged her from behind.“It’s okay, Auntie. I can see you’re sad. You can tell me anything … so please don’t hold back.”Lady Muramoto gasped from the warmth of Kyune’s body. And her niece’s words … were surprisingly reassuring. They were the first truly reassuring words she had heard ever since her husband had broken the news. At Kyune’s gentle caress, she broke down and started sobbing loudly. She continued sobbing for a long time, releasing pent-up emotions that had had no outlet while letting herself be comforted by Kyune’s warmth and presence. To be seen in such a state and then comforted by her niece … how shameful.“Thank you, Kyune-chan.” After she finally finished crying, Lady Muramoto pulled her niece in front of her so she could see the gratitude in her eyes.“Is it the baby?” Kyune asked.“No. Thank God, no. Teru-chan is quite healthy” Lady Muramoto said, caressing her belly. “I-I’m not sure if it’s something that you should hear about.”“So Uncle did something mean again.” Kyune concluded. She didn’t like her Uncle much. He was a cruel, cold-hearted man.“Y-yes. I guess you could say that.” Lady Muramoto admitted. “... But isn’t really his fault!”“You said you wouldn’t hold back.” Kyune reminded, “Please tell me what happened.”Lady Muramoto sighed. Kyune could tell that she was trying to think of a way to phrase it. “Your Uncle’s daughter is coming to live in this house … But you see, her mother isn’t the same woman as me.”Kyune nodded. “So she’s an illegitimate child then.” She said bluntly.“Yes.” Lady Muramoto said quietly.
“Do you hate her?”“Yes! No! I don’t know!” Lady Muramoto wailed. “Oh, I hate my husband! And I hate her for ruining our marriage! But … It isn’t her fault, is it? I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know!” Lady Muramoto hugged Kyune close as she began crying again, staining her school uniform with makeup-laden tears. “Is it my fault? Am I not enough for my husband? I try so hard to be, but still … Is it because he hates me?”“It’s okay. It’s not your fault at all.” Kyune reassured her, rubbing her head, “You’re too gentle to hate anyone, Aunt Muramoto. You’re too gentle for anyone with a good heart to hate either.”It took a much shorter time for Lady Muramoto to stop crying this time. “Has anyone told you you’re a calming influence, Kyune-chan?”“No.” Kyune said honestly.“Well, your auntie thinks you are.” Lady Muramoto told her, “... But where are my manners. Can I get you anything while you’re here?”Kyune pondered this. “Do you have any of those Belgian chocolates left?”
>>4139623Lady Muramoto got dealt a shitty hand huh.
>>4139654That was the impression I was trying to give off, yes.
Gaaaaaah I want the next thread already!
>>4117291New thread up>>4143080
>>4143116Bless you QM!