Disclaimer: Touhou belongs to Zun.
A/N: And now we go back into the past, way, way, back. Further. Further! There we go! On with the show!
The figure entered a rather bare room, silent as a mouse. Unsheathing her blade, the figure obviously had dark intentions.
Ever so quietly, the figure padded across the tatami towards the woman that slept in the room, before she lifted her blade and...
Midnight, Carriage bound for Gensokyo, 1884:
I awoke with a start, finally escaping that horrible recurring dream. It started about a month ago, I believed it to be some kind of sign, a vision perhapse... I didn't like it one bit...
My name is Hakurei Mima, I'm turning 16 in a month, and I'm unmarried. My twin sister Miko and I are bound for the land of illusions, Gensokyo. We have been traveling for the past week, and are finally almost there. A month ago we had received payment in advance for a job, as well as a note.
"Hello Hakurei Miko, Hakurei Mima, I am in need of your services. Enclosed is payment for your time, as well as carriage tickets. When the service has been rendered, you will become a part of history, a living legend, and gain a shrine of your own, to do with as you please. We will talk more upon your arrival, for now, know that I expect you to arrive exactly a month from now."
It was a secret that the name Hakurei was nothing but a name we had put together after running away from home. Our parents had arranged a marriage for each of us, and we wouldn't stand for it. We cast away our family, our very lives up untill this point, becoming Shrine Maidens. For ones such as us, this letter was an answer to our prayers, as we had nowhere to go.
"Mima...? What's wrong, did you have that dream again?" My sister, Miko, rubbed the sleep from her eyes, used to me waking her like this. It's not that she wanted to get used to it, she had actually wanted my nightmares to simply stop, but somewhere along the way she had gotten used to being woken up in the middle of the night.
"...Yeah..." It was like all the past dreams, a glimpse of what looked like a murder, but it was just so... vivid, this time!
"Don't let it get to you... I'm sure the dreams will fade with time, so don't you worry." My sister, like always, didn't worry over such things. Funny thing, it was her idea to become shrine maidens, but she doesn't believe in the supernatural at all... I have no idea what compelled her to suggest such a thing. Every job, untill now, Miko had actually declined. What was different about this one? The up front pay, perhapse. The promise of a place to live.
Suddenly the carriage came to a stop, the horses making a ruckus.
"Driver, what wrong?" Miko wanted to know the reason for the delay. Today was the agreed upon arival date, she wasn't happy with any delays.
Silence was all that answered her.
"Dammit..." Miko lit a lantern, before storming out of the carriage, going out to see what the issue was. I followed soon after, curious as to why the driver hadn't answered.
As we made our way to the front of the carriage, to get a better look, we saw... nothing. The driver was simply gone, the horses, gone. What was going on?
Miko growled in frustration, while I was busy thinking up crazy reasons as to why this had happened. Maybe a youkai had gotten them? Heh, yeah right...
It looked like we were to continue on foot from here, in the dead of night. Going back inside, so as to grab our luggage, we came upon a woman.
She had flowing blonde hair, which ended in numerous red bows, her hair shined like silken gold under the lantern light. She was dressed in a purple Kimono, which was snugly showing off her assets. Her eyes were of a color I had simply not seen before, Purple, the exact same as the Kimono. She looked as young as me, but her eyes said otherwise. They gave off the look of a woman of great influance, of great age. In her hand was a white folding fan.
"Who are you? !" Miko demanded of the strange woman, who simply smiled in response.
"My, is that any way to talk to the one who hired you?" We were both caught off guard by that, not expecting that answer. How had she known we were the ones she hired? We had never met the woman in our lives!
"...My appologies, but how did you get in here, and where is our driver?" I piped in, knowing that my sister was far too rough with her words. The woman opened her fan, hiding a smile.
"I've been here the whole time, and I ate him!" ...What? Both of those claims couldn't be true, we would have seen her had she been here, and the other part was plain silly...
"I... What?" Miko couldn't think of a way to respond to the strange statement.
"Ohh, I've been here the whole time! I've just been hiding, you see. Also, he was quite tasty." She was still going with that crazy lie?
"And where exactly would you hide...? There's hardly any room for our luggage, let alone you!" My sister, once more knowing what to ask, had a point.
"And would you please tell us your name? You already know ours, be we still don't know the name of our generous employer." I fired off a question of my own, one that would perhapse get us somewhere, anywhere was fine... We were simply talking in circles up untill now.
"Ahh, how rude of me... My name is Yakumo Yukari, Youkai of borders." That... had to be a lie as well. There was no way that she could be a youkai, she was so... pretty.
"Will you drop the lies already...? We're here, now what is it you want of us?" Miko didn't belive for a second that the one before us was a Youkai. Youkai were just legends!
"Ahh, but I'm telling the truth my dears... And first, how about you take your luggage inside?" Yukari said, while smiling. What was it about that smile that filled me with fear?
"Inside? We're in the middle of nowhere!" Miko, who was stating the obvious, had a point yet again.
"Whatever do you mean? The shrine, right outside the door behind you." The both of us rose a brow at the statement, before I opened the door to the carriage. What I saw was quite surprising. We were, just as she said, parked infront of a shrine. And it was now the middle of day. Could it be that she was... actually telling the truth? There's no way that this much time had passed, and we were now in the middle of the courtyard of a shrine. ...How had we gotten here without horses or a driver?