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Summary (VN)

This page provides a detailed summary of the chapters in the visual novel version of Kotohogushi.

Chapter List[]

English (Translated) Japanese
Observer Jedha 監視者ジェダ
For Whom I Live For... 誰がために生き…
Meeting Riku 陸との出会い
A Peaceful Life 穏やかな暮らし
The Meaning of Life 生きる意味
To Love and Be Loved 愛して、愛されて
Happiness and Taboo 幸せと、禁忌と
The Birth and Loss of Life 生まれゆく命、去りゆく命
Tragic Fate 悲しき運命
Reunion 再会
The Meaning of Kindness 優しさの意味
Looming Shadows 忍び寄る影
At the End of Hatred and Despair 憎しみと絶望の果てに
For Whom I Die For 誰がために死す

Chapter 1: Observer Jedha[]

A person narrates about how long ago, demons attacked the village of Onigafuchi.

Yeasomul is introduced slaying the demons amidst the burning village. She finds a destroyed house with a lone surviving baby inside. Yeasomul makes a show of planning to give it a mercy kill but scoops up the baby instead.

Shino recounts the legend of how demons ravaged the villagers long ago. A god with horns just like the demons appeared one day and slayed all of them. Yeasomul passed along the baby to the rescued villagers, telling them to raise it since it had some of her soul in it and promising to protect them in return. The baby was regarded as a reincarnation of Yeasomul/Oyashiro-sama.

Chapter 2: For Whom I Live For...[]

Many years later, Yeasomul goes to Onigafuchi Swamp and opens communication with Ryuun-Ohc. Yeasomul gives Ryuun-Ohc her sword to repair, which will take some time. They discuss Yeasomul’s success on her last few missions. Yeasomul laments how she had to kill many demonified Grifys and that the whole village burned down due to the severity of the carnage, and that many of the Putus she teamed up with earlier were wiped out. Ryuun-Ohc points out how these demons seemed more intelligent. Yeasomul comments that lots of crossbreeding means the Grifys are starting to catch up to Putus. All Yeasomul has done as an Observer for years is hunt down berserk Grifys. The Grifys are growing as the Putus and humans are dwindling.

Yeasomul especially laments that her friend Shezhen Jedha died, making Yeasomul the only young Putus who had no memories of Mother Ryuun. She wonders what death will be like for her in the future.

Yeasomul wonders about the demon who came to the village 20 years ago. He demonized every Grifys and attacked fellow villagers, so surely he was a Putus and not a Grifys. This Putus was likely a Hai, and because of its strong mental stability, it could demonize Grifys who normally had it under control. Yeasomul tells Ryuun-Ohc to inform other Lynoses as she goes to check the aftereffects of that Putus. Ryuun-Ohc tells her to take a break and chides her for exerting herself so much.

Yeasomul takes a bath and ruminates on what Ryuun-Ohc told her about trying to fight god. She has a flashback to a Ryuun elder calling off the search for Grifys, as they will let humans deal with their own problems. The elder believed they were arrogant to claim themselves as gods and save humans, but Yeasomul believed they still had a duty to atone. The elder says Yeasomul was born into this world so she has no real obligation to atone for the Ryuun’s sins. Some of these Grifys cases were caused by the human vessels’ personalities wanting to destroy and giving in to their primal desires. Yeasomul ran off, conflicted over what her role in this world is.

Yeasomul looks at her horns in the water’s reflection, thinking she could live peacefully with humans if not for them. Suddenly she hears what sounds like a human nearby but decides to ignore it. She then senses a bloodthirsty creature and decides to check it out. Yeasomul runs towards the commotion, finding a bear about to attack Riku Furude. Yeasomul wrestles with the bear and rolls with it into a waterfall. Riku dives in after them but sees the bear’s corpse floating down the river. Yeasomul herself emerges from the river, her nails grown long. Yeasomul tells Riku to go away and keep this a secret from anyone, but she realizes she just fought the bear naked. Yeasomul quickly jumps back into the river to hide herself as Riku tries to deny his pervertedness. Yeasomul gets angry and throws him in the river.

Chapter 3: Meeting Riku[]

Yeasomul drags Riku out of the river as Ryuun-Ohc reprimands her. She considers erasing Riku’s memories but decides against it. Yeasomul notices she injured her foot earlier and dips it in the river to treat it. She relaxes and enjoys the sunset when Riku wakes up and Yeasomul greets him. Rika sees Yeasomul’s horns, and though she thinks he’s afraid, she informs him that she is Oyashiro-sama and not to tell anyone else of what transpired. Yeasomul threatens him but Riku seems more confused than horrified. Riku then agrees to her request while complimenting her beauty. Yeasomul gets flustered and threatens him again. Riku is still unwilling to forget seeing her naked and Yeasomul grows her claws in anger, only for Ryuun-Ohc to reel her in. Yeasomul thinks about how she’s never gotten this emotional with a human before. She sees that Riku still isn't scared and brings up her horns, which the man seems to recognize only now. Yeasomul is confused at having to explain why her horns would be frightening. Yeasomul is still feeling hot and bothered at how Riku is acting.

Riku introduces himself as Riku Furude, the son of the village’s chief priest. Yeasomul remembers that she came to that place 20 years ago and was hailed as Oyashiro-sama; Riku’s family were her retainers and thus had some composure when interacting with a god. Riku sees no reason to be afraid of his saviour and asks for her name. Yeasomul is surprised since no one has ever asked her that. She introduces herself as Hai-Ryun Yeasomul Jedha. A confused Riku asks her to say it again and still botches it. Yeasomul realizes that humans can’t hear her name correctly because it’s hard to convert to their language. She continues to feel a throbbing in her chest despite her irritation at Riku’s behavior. Yeasomul repeats her name several times, but Riku still doesn’t get it and proposes giving her a nickname instead. A fed up Yeasomul allows him to, saying her name means “the feathers of the bird wings in this land.” Riku decides on the name “Hanyuu”, drawing it in the ground. He could hear the “Hai” part and she said there was “wing” in her name, so he did a play on words.

Yeasomul’s heart beats faster. Jedha was her family name as an observer while Yeasomul was a hereditary title based on the land she lived in. Hanyuu accepts the name, thinking it was the first time she’s ever truly been given one.

Hanyuu continues acting flustered and keeps telling Riku to go back to his village and forget everything. Riku notices that Hanyuu’s foot is injured and treats it. Hanyuu notices that the plants he used for the treatment grow near here, which Riku was foraging for. Riku thanks Hanyuu for helping him and then asks if she’ll come to the shrine with him to properly treat her foot. Hanyuu rejects him since she doesn’t want to scare the villagers but Riku says there’s a path they can take to avoid the village. Hanyuu feels a desire to talk more with Riku and agrees.

Chapter 4: A Peaceful Life[]

A month later, Hanyuu has been living with Riku, unable to turn down his offers of hospitality. Hanyuu’s foot had healed long ago, but she did it without her own medicine. Hanyuu wonders why she felt comforted talking to Riku and was eager to be with him. Hanyuu felt uncomfortable with other Ryuun, even with her partner Shezhen, but not with Riku.

Riku interrupts Hanyuu’s reminiscence by bringing some lunch. He tries to teach her some table manners. A few days ago, Riku chided Hanyuu for not speaking like a woman, for she had picked up her manner of speech from hanging out with male Ryuun elders all the time. Riku tries to make Hanyuu sound more lovable. Hanyuu enjoys being treated as a woman by Riku despite her horns. Hanyuu also enjoys Riku’s cooking, having previously starved herself and ate as little as possible to influence her battles with Grifys.

Riku and Hanyuu have some tea together, and afterwards Hanyuu helps him clean. Riku doesn’t want her to since she’s the guardian deity and a guest, but Hanyuu insists that she wants to repay him after living here for a month. Hanyuu realizes that she still has horns and Riku doesn't want others seeing them. Riku says he lives by himself since his father lives in a town near the castle. Riku says he never ever saw Hanyuu as a bad person when he met her, but he can’t guarantee other villagers will feel the same. Hanyuu is aware that the villagers know Riku’s been living with someone else for a while and suggests she just change into her astral form, however she can’t actually do that since she just ate.

Riku devises a solution and produces a monk hood, putting it on Hanyuu’s head and covering her horns. Riku says that Hanyuu should change her clothes as well to not draw attention. Hanyuu looks at herself in a mirror, wearing her black armored garments, and agrees. Hanyuu then remembers that Riku’s mother passed when he was young and wonders why he would have female clothing in an all-male household, and Riku reveals that he has a thing for miko outfits, unveiling a closet full of them. Riku espouses the care put into tending his many miko outfits as Hanyuu looks at him dumbfounded.

Hanyuu doesn’t understand why one person has so many miko outfits and asks Ryuun-Ohc when the last miko was in this village. The circuit tells her that it's been 186 years. The late wife of Priest Furude was not a priestess herself, nor were the female villagers who worked for the shrine considered priestesses either. In other words, Riku collects miko outfits as a hobby. Riku goes on about the greatness of miko outfits and wonders if Mayor Kimiyoshi’s daughter Shino may be suitable to wear one.

Riku takes Hanyuu’s hands and asks her to wear a miko outfit. Hanyuu looks at the selection and picks out a red and white outfit that matches her combat garments. She then goes ballistic on Riku since it shows a lot of cleavage. Hanyuu sends him flying through a wall and looks to see that the other outfits are similarly perverted. She grows more suspicious, seeing as every outfit is tailored to fit her. Riku reveals that for a month, he’s been getting comrades in the village to bring him these outfits, and he could tell Hanyuu’s measurements just by looking at her. Hanyuu beats him up again.

(The TIP "Miko Outfits 101" is unlocked.)

Chapter 5: The Meaning of Life[]

Snippets of Riku’s diary are shown, where he comes home late from a village assembly to find Hanyuu made dinner for him. Riku loves her dinner, and Hanyuu asks if he really means it. Despite the oddities with her food, Riku truly felt from the bottom of his heart that it was delicious. Riku wanted to hug her but knew he would fling him away, so he resorted to stealing occasional glances at her. Later, Hanyuu has managed to get the hang of cleaning. She’s been smiling a lot more lately but also getting angry. Riku continues his plans to make Hanyuu wear a miko outfit but to no avail, earning many beatings in the process. Hanyuu insists that she will never wear a miko outfit and rants over his persistence.

Hanyuu goes to the overlook and looks down at the village below. Even though she disliked Riku’s persistence, she still enjoyed these exchanges. Hanyuu asks Ryuun-Ohc why she enjoyed it so much, and the AI replies that maybe they’re just playing around. Hanyuu realizes that she’s never played with anyone as a child, only ever training since there were no other Jedha around who were similar to her both physically or mentally. Hanyuu enjoyed playing with Riku, and Ryuun-Ohc suggests she may have feelings for him. Hanyuu dismisses the thought, not wanting to believe it's true. Riku joins Hanyuu in looking over the village. Hanyuu found it amusing that Riku thought others liked the same things he did and mistook it for hiding embarrassment. He also tended not to listen to others, but she couldn’t detect any malice or ill will in it.

Hanyuu says it’s been three months since she came here, and everything felt so fast. Hanyuu really enjoyed staying with Riku, and though she considered sneaking away at night to return to her mission, she simply couldn’t. The news she got from Ryuun-Ohc made her think this was all God’s punishment, getting tension and a sense of duty yet melancholy. Riku says the village view is more beautiful when the seasons change, and the villagers will gather here again and hold a lively party. Hanyuu remembers secretly watching villagers a few months ago as the cherry blossoms fell. Riku says that Hanyuu should join them next time, promising to talk with everyone beforehand so he can introduce Hanyuu to them. Riku had passed off Hanyuu as a Shugendou nun who was injured in the mountains, but she was sure people would get suspicious since she never showed her face.

Hanyuu says it’s not necessary, but Riku wants to show everyone what a wonderful woman she is. He’s sure that Shino, who’s the same age as him, will get along well with Hanyuu. Hanyuu remembers that Shino was Mayor Kimiyoshi’s only daughter, and Hanyuu sometimes felt jealous when she saw the two of them speaking and wuld act curt towards Riku afterwards. Hanyuu still refuses, explaining she had a message from Ryuun-Ohc: a Grifys signal from a region near Onigafuchi.

Hanyuu was happy to get three months of rest, but Ryuun-Ohc sounded apologetic to tell her about this. Hanyuu thinks this won’t be a final farewell since she’s not leaving for a long time. Ryuun-Ohc warns her that she may die this time. Hanyuu looks at the data: several large settlements were destroyed by demons, with many residents killed. A feudal lord with military power sent an army to suppress them, but almost all of them were wiped out. Hanyuu wonders if this situation may have been instigated by another Putus. Ryuun-Ohc suggests that Hanyuu stay away from this mission and look at the proceedings, seemingly going against her programming. The system says this is finally a good chance to let humans solve their own problems.

Thanks to knowledge from the Ryuun, humans have learned how to manufacture gunpowder and refine steel. Hanyuu chides Ryuun-Ohc for thinking in such a militaristic way, as that was what led to the ruin of the Ryuun. Hanyuu’s still reaching the limits of her own power, and with so many Grifys she couldn’t hope to stand up to them by herself. Hanyuu sheathes her repaired sword and swears to slay the Grifys. Ryuun-Ohc is about to say that Hanyuu really wants something to do with Riku, and Hanyuu tells her to stop. Hanyuu apologizes for her outburst and Ryuun-Ohc apologizes too, having known that saying that would make Hanyuu aware of her own feelings. Hanyuu will seriously consider this issue once she finishes, and Ryuun-Ohc recommends she transfer her AI into her sword for the mission. Ryuun-Ohc says Hanyuu needs to consider every possible factor for this mission and doesn’t want her to die. Hanyuu smiles.

Hanyuu tells Riku of the news that she’ll be leaving to do her duty. Riku simply says it will be lonely and hangs his head. Hanyuu feels conflicted, as that means Riku will miss her. Hanyuu intends to come back when she finishes. She still finds the village to be an important surveillance zone, as she still didn't know the secret behind that Putus; with the marker in the water source, it would alert her if his group ever showed up again. Riku tells Hanyuu to stay safe.

Hanyuu wonders why she’s feeling so considerate about her missions and speaking openly with Riku, understanding that maybe Riku really is special to her. Riku asks if she really came from another dimension, and Hanyuu affirms that she had to cross the 5th-dimensional wall to come to Earth. Riku is confused and Hanyuu explains: if by throwing a tiny pebble, representing a world, then that pebble moving from one place to another is a 4th dimensional concept. The past was when it was in her hand, the present is where it’s lying on the ground, and the future is when she picks it up again. There are cases where the pebble would have flown to the left, or to the right. The pebble could have also flown past the shrine grounds. This is possibility, a 5th dimensional concept. The 3rd dimension was composition that made solid bodies. The 4th dimension was defined by time, and the 5th dimension was defined by possibilities. Things divided by that 5th dimension are parallel worlds.

In other words, Hanyuu is a possible person, humans who reached a branch of evolution similar to this world and simply turned down a different branch. Though humans evolved from monkeys, those monkeys may have had horns. Hanyuu’s ancestors never lost their horns, and though the Ryuun had higher physical and mental capabilities that humans, they still declined faster. Riku says it sounds like her people would’ve prospered more than humans and lived happily, but reality isn’t fair. Hanyuu thinks they were lacking some way to control their advanced capabilities and wonders how wealth and superiority were defined.

Riku asks Hanyuu if she’s currently happy in this world. Hanyuu thinks that her time with Riku would be happy and wonders if she’s really happy right now, and they get interrupted by Priest Furude arriving. Riku’s father makes some small talk with his son and then notices Hanyuu’s presence. Hanyuu and Mr. Furude are surprised to see each other, and when Riku asks, Hanyuu says they met a while ago. Furude is confused by her nickname of Hanyuu, and Riku says he came up with it because her real name was too difficult. Furude asks if Riku has any idea who he’s talking to. Hanyuu says it’s no big deal and sends Riku away to make lunch.

Hanyuu sits down with Priest Furude and says it’s been a long time since she gave that command. Priest Furude was left in charge of the shrine by the surviving villagers since everyone else died that day. That day, Riku’s father attempted to save an elderly woman as the villagers were evacuating and was almost killed by Grifys. Hanyuu rescued him then, and they managed to restore the shrine to a serviceable state.

Riku’s father asks what her relation to Riku is, and Hanyuu says she’s just a freeloader. She wonders what she really means to Riku and then asks Furude how the baby she gave him is doing. Furude nervously says he’s doing fine and Hanyuu says that’s good, but then he reveals that the baby is Riku. Furude always told Riku that the one who saved him was Oyashiro-sama, and though she may have horns like a demon, she is very compassionate. Riku always envisioned her as his ideal woman.

Hanyuu fights the Grifys and tends to her wounds. These Grifys were preparing to fight a Putus and a Jedha, propping up maimed corpses to sow confusion and fear in surviving villagers. This attack was on the same scale as the one on Onigafuchi 20 year ago, but these demons had different craftiness and brutality. They were also intelligent. Ryuun-Ohc informs Hanyuu that 30 more demons are coming to surround her. Hanyuu suffers from her wounds, and Ryuun-Ohc tells her to evacuate. Hanyuu refuses, as the villagers haven’t all retreated yet. Since she was so wounded, she couldn’t change to astral form and sneak into the enemy base. Hanyuu asks for the group that’s weakest in strength and numbers and decides to tackle that one first. Hanyuu also asks Ryuun-Ohc to stop calling her Jedha but Hanyuu.

Hanyuu rushes into battle, her sword reaching its limit. Hanyuu decides to unleash her claw blades and finish off the group. Ryuun-Ohc warns against it, as it will cause her mind and sense of self to break down. Hanyuu says she’ll only unseal them for a short time. Until then, Hanyuu only fought the Grifys to prove her existence, never caring if she died to prove she was a Jedha, but now she wants to live just a little longer.

Hanyuu returns to the Furude Shrine at night, her wounded body aching all over. Ryuun-Ohc says they can still go to Onigafuchi for treatment, but Hanyuu just wants a look at Riku’s sleeping face. Hanyuu trips and falls onto the stairs, reopening her wound. Ryuun-Ohc is sure that most of the Grifys in this land have been exterminated, but Hanyuu thinks she’s lying and lies down, looking up at the beautiful moon. Hanyuu wonders why the moon is bringing her such peace.

Hanyuu continues up the stairs to see Riku coming down towards her. Riku sees how bad her injuries are and Hanyuu says Ryuun-Ohc will take care of it before burying her face in his chest. Riku is surprised and Hanyuu asks to stay like this for a while. Riku embraces her. Hanyuu decides she really does love Riku and wants to stay with him forever.

Chapter 6: To Love and Be Loved[]

Two years later, in spring. While Riku is cleaning outside the shrine, Hanyuu finds him and tears into him for leaving out a miko outfit for her as a change of clothes in the bathroom. Riku goes on about the greatness of miko outfits but Hanyuu has enough. She was forced to wear the outfit, tearing off her towel to reveal the red and white miko uniform underneath; Hanyuu finally fell for his plan. She rambles over the feel of her outfit despite feeling pleased at Riku’s compliments. Hanyuu respected that Riku was a kind person, but she just couldn't understand his miko fetish. She asks if he’s aware he’s a priest serving a god, but Riku goes on about how they’re in a time of peacee. Hanyuu beats him up again.

Even after two years, they still bicker like this. Hanyuu never knew her parents and was given her mission when she was just a child, never having much opportunity to interact with others. Hanyuu feels happy that Riku has a different kind of affection for her than anyone else.

Hanyuu and Riku watch the cherry blossoms fall. Soon, the third summer since Hanyuu came here will be approaching. Last year was very peaceful, and she hopes nothing else will happen this year. Riku asks how long her battle against the Grifys will take. Hanyuu understood that maybe her mission would never end until she died. It may take centuries, well past Riku’s lifetime, and Riku says he wants to thank her directly once it ends. Hanyuu wonders what she would do after Riku died.

Riku talks about assimilation and asks if he may have a Ryuun inside him. Hanyuu denies it, as she would’ve sensed it earlier. Hanyuu had secretly provided Riku with medicine from Ryuun-Ohc to suppress his activation factor anyway, convincing him it was for a chronic illness. She didn’t want to take the chance that he was a Grifys. Hanyuu assures Riku that his soul is his own. She apologizes for what the Ryuun have done to the humans of this world; their horns and hatred as demons may be their punishment. Hanyuu didn’t understand why children had to pay for the sins of their fathers. She was a Ryuun and a Putus, so she had to follow that destiny. Riku says the humans are to blame as well since they created the environment where they oppress the Ryuun. Hanyuu knew that the Putus faced persecution as foreigners. Hanyuu had a peaceful life thanks to Riku, but she still had to check if her investigation into villagers with Grifys factors was affecting them telepathically. As a Putus, she might cause an outbreak like 22 years ago. Hanyuu tells Riku that hunting the Grifys is vital since some species have gone extinct because of them. She goes on about her duty, and Riku says that it’s so large-scale he can’t comprehend it. Riku however understands Hanyuu’s feelings and finds it interesting. Hanyuu really does like Riku despite his miko fetish. She might be one of the few people who knows that Riku gets tongue-tied when his true feelings come out.

Riku asks Hanyuu how she went about finding that Putus. Hanyuu says she put a sclerotium marker in the village when she first came here. It’s harmless to humans, but a Putus or Grifys in danger of demonifying who inhales it will manifest the factor related to their hunting instincts in three years. Hanyuu will the locate the person it reacts to and pass judgement. Ryuun-Ohc gave her a drug to protect her sanity, but it’s not effective in times of extreme emotion. Hanyuu hopes for the best outcome where no reactions occur after three years, meaning there are no more Putus in this land and the people with Grifys factors have antibodies.

Riku asks what she’ll do if she doesn’t find that demon and peace comes to the village. Normally, Hanyuu would go travel somewhere else, and still use Onigafuchi as a base since it had a Lynos, but she couldn’t bear to watch Riku grow old and die. She imagines a world where Riku gets married to someone else and gets flustered. She can't understand why the thought of Riku being taken by someone else was worse than him dying. Riku interrupts Hanyuu’s worrying by asking if she’ll keep staying with him always. Riku confesses that he loves her and grabs her hand. He made a prayer to tell Hanyuu something if she ever wore a miko outfit. In this village, it was a custom to give someone a handmade silk garment as a sign of courtship. Riku apologizes for acting so weird a lot but he truly wishes to be with Hanyuu for the rest of his life.

Hanyuu was feeling happy that Riku felt the same way, but her joy disappeared in an instant and was replaced with anger. She lets go of Riku and runs towards the shrine grounds. Riku grabs her and Hanyuu says this must be a cruel joke. She does love Riku too, but she can’t believe Riku’s confession. Hanyuu starts crying, a first for her. Riku says he’ll wait as long as it takes for her to believe him. Hanyuu unhoods her horns and asks if he can really still love her with those. She laments that nobody would ever accept a demon like her, and that being with Riku would bring him strife. Riku says again that he loves her, but she still thinks he's lying. Hanyuu begins to accept Riku’s words but says he should have confessed when she was wearing an ordinary outfit. Riku says he’ll reflect on that, and Hanyuu embraces him and wails.

(The TIP "The Bride and the Groom’s Father" is unlocked.)

Chapter 7: Happiness and Taboo[]

On a sunny day, Hanyuu finishes the laundry and is greeted by Shino, the only daughter of the Kimiyoshi family which served as mayors of the village. Hanyuu thinks back to three months ago, when she and Riku pledged to get married. Back then, Hanyuu knew next to nothing on how to do housework and was bad at sewing and doing laundry. Even her cooking, despite using the same ingredients as Riku, turned out to be very poisonous and had adverse effects on a dog earlier. Hanyuu asks how Riku can stomach her cooking despite that, and he says it’s because he loves her. All Hanyuu and Ryuun-Ohc knew was how to fight, and Hanyuu wanted to repay Riku for all his patronage. One day Hanyuu met Shino, who was invited to Riku’s place.

A flashback occurs. Shino compliments Riku for finding such a beautiful wife to be and asks when the wedding is. Shino says she’s going to help Hanyuu as much as she can. Hanyuu is on guard since Shino knew things about Riku she didn't, but she could also tell Riku was making a wall against Shino in conversation.

Although things were rough with Shino, Hanyuu learned a great deal from her. They became good friends after a month when Shino accidentally discovered her horns, from tripping and pulling off Hanyuu's hood. Hanyuu thought everything was over, but Shino simply complimented her horns, gave her hood back, and never mentioned them again, her attitude changing not one bit. Shino compared the situation to a foreigner having different colored eyes, and never told any of the other villagers. Hanyuu trusted Shino completely after that.

Shiono pulls out some bento boxes for Hanyuu, each one containing mochi. Hanyuu drooled over it. She had developed a very strong affection towards sweet things, especially baked, fluffy treats. Riku suddenly comes back from town, and Hanyuu wonders if he may have gotten a gift to commemorate three years together. Riku enters the room smiling and asks his beloved to look at the new miko outfit he’s brought. Riku calls his creation a masterpiece and Hanyuu mentally criticizes the many issues with it. He only ever went to town for things he couldn’t get otherwise, and he used this rare opportunity to get another miko outfit. An enraged Hanyuu punches Riku and sends him flying through the veranda, reluctantly dragging him back at Shino's urging.

Shino wonders why Riku never asked her to wear those outfits, and Hanyuu says she would destroy the illusion of them and didn’t look innocent enough. Shino changes her tune and suggests they throw Riku in the river. Shino and Hanyuu bond over dissing Riku’s miko obsession. Hanyuu rants and talks about using Ryuun tech to disassemble Riku’s miko uniforms, much to Shino’s confusion. Shino understands that Hanyuu wanted a present all along and Hanyuu gets flustered.

Hanyuu grabs a mochi and takes a bite, but quickly goes outside and vomits into a bush. Shino tends to her. Hanyuu is confused, as Putus have greater immunity to humans and it was unlikely for her to get infected by this world’s illnesses, so maybe it was a new virus. Shino understands that Hanyuu’s nausea was morning sickness, meaning she’s going to have a baby soon. Hanyuu is confused again, as Putus have very low birthrates, and the odds of her conceiving with a human like Riku were low.

Hanyuu is amazed by this thought. She thought she didn't need children but still dreamed of having a child with Riku. Ryuun-Ohc said it was nigh-impossible for them to procreate since they were different species. Hanyuu feels her stomach and starts crying tears of joy. Hanyuu wonders if her child will look like her or Riku, and then realizes the horror: she’s giving birth to a person with human and Ryuun blood, who may develop horns like her; a demon child. Hanyuu doesn’t want to tell Riku since he’ll undoubtedly want the child, and when she gives birth, someone is going to suffer because of its appearance: either Riku or the baby itself.

Hanyuu sends Shino home, brings the still-unconscious Riku to the house and then hides out in the ritual storehouse as a thunderstorm rages. Hanyuu ponders what to do. She looks at the statue of Oyashiro-sama, which was commissioned by Riku’s father to the feudal lord’s personal religious image maker. The statue had no horns and looked like it had motherly affection. Hanyuu wonders if her child could be taught to hide their horns but doesn’t want them to suffer for things they haven’t done. Her child could also turn out to be a Grifys, being half blooded. They might have the potential to demonify as well. Hanyuu trembles at the possibility she’d have to kill her own child.

Hanyuu hears a voice in her head chiding her for being so terrified. Hanyuu recognized the voice from somewhere and tried to shut it out, but the voice kept cursing her. It tells Hanyuu to simply kill her child like she killed their brethren, and Hanyuu writhes in anger. She leaves the storehouse and walks into the rain.

Hanyuu goes to Onigafuchi Swamp and tells Ryuun-Ohc to prepare for synchronization. Hanyuu decides she will make it so this child never existed so nobody close to her would feel pain or fear. Hanyuu does her chant to sync with Ryuun-Ohc but it doesn’t work, with Ryuun-Ohc saying she cannot allow this. She says Hanyuu does not have any understanding of what it means to abort a child. Hanyuu is concerned that her child could become an even worse threat than the Grifys and wants to fix it right now, but Ryuun-Ohc continues to defy her. Hanyuu is shocked that the AI could even guess her state of mind when they weren’t synced.

Ryuun-Ohc says Hanyuu is not thinking right, trying to run away from taking responsibility for another’s fate. Ryuun-Ohc says she was created to maintain Hanyuu’s wellbeing and happiness, and she rejects her command because she believes it is the right thing to do. She asks Hanyuu if becoming miserable will really bring her happiness, but Hanyuu still believes it will cause a disaster if her child is born. Ryuun-Ohc asks why she’s so sure when she has absolutely no way of knowing currently. Her bad future is merely an assumption. Not only that, the fear that this child would violate Ryuun law is another assumption Hanyuu made up. The Ryuun coexisted with humanity to build a new future, so how would this child’s existence violate that? Hanyuu doesn't want her child to grow horns and suffer the same injustices she did. Hanyuu became a Jedha because she knew she couldn’t live as a human, not wanting to believe her name would mean nothing due to the decrease in Putus.

Hanyuu fears what would happen if it got out that Riku married a demon. Even someone like her accidentally revealed her horns to someone like Shino, and word would have spread quickly if it were any other situation. Hanyuu doesn’t want to bring a child into this world to burden them, and Ryuun-Ohc asks if she’d feel the same if her child lived the same way. Ryuun-Ohc could tell that Hanyuu was thrilled to be pregnant, and she was more concerned over her potential misfortune.

Hanyuu wonders how Ryuun-Ohc could have developed such consideration. The system says that Hanyuu's child has parents who understand everything and will be by their side, which Hanyuu herself never had. Hanyuu begins to agree, that even people like Shino will help in the future, but she still can’t accept that. Hanyuu chants again but Ryuun-Ohc doesn’t respond. Riku suddenly appears and dives into the swamp, asking why Hanyuu’s trying to kill herself. Riku learned everything from Shino. He was happy to hear he’d have a child and wanted to celebrate with Hanyuu, but he couldn’t find her anywhere and came to the swamp.

Riku asks if she hates the idea of having his child ans asks why she never told him, and Hanyuu confesses her fears that the child will also have horns. Hanyuu says she came to the swamp to synchronize with Ryuun-Ohc and kill the child before it could ever be born, and Riku asks if it means she denies him too. Riku knew that he wouldn’t be here if not for her rescue 22 years ago. Hanyuu recalls the event. Riku asks her to have the child. Hanyuu says she’ll be a burden and Riku asks if she was lying when she became his wife. Riku says he learned the truth when he was 10, when he asked if he was a member of the Furude family. Priest Furude said he didn't share his blood, but he was still his son. Riku was saved from suffering back then and now wants to save Hanyuu. Riku embraces her and says he will protect Hanyuu and their child no matter what. Hanyuu hugs him back and cries.

Chapter 8: The Birth and Loss of Life[]

Hanyuu succeeds in cooking something Shino likes and is overjoyed. Hanyuu is now several months pregnant. She cooks lunch and Riku gleefully devours it. Later, Hanyuu thanks Riku and Shino for helping her become who she is now. Shino suggests they hang out as families someday. Suddenly, Hanyuu starts having contractions. Shino gives Riku instructions so they can prepare for the childbirth.

A flashback occurs to Hanyuu getting updates from Ryuun-Ohc on her child’s growth. Hanyuu is surprised that Ryuun-Ohc is being so supportive, especially when she’s in no state to fight Grifys properly. The system explains that her purpose is not just to scan for Grifys but also to control the gate linking to the Ryuun’s homeworld and to link together the scattered Ryuun, as her name means "brethren linker". Ryuun-Ohc also celebrates the birth of new Ryuun. Ryuun-Ohc is happy at seeing Hanyuu living so happily herself.

After several hours of labor, Hanyuu successfully gives birth to a healthy baby girl. Hanyuu prepares to cradle her child but worries again that she will have horns. Riku confirms that she’s hornless. Hanyuu sees for herself that her daughter has no horns and cries tears of joy. Riku asks what they should name her, and Hanyuu realizes they never discussed it. Seeing the cherry blossoms outside blooming and a petal flying onto the baby’s forehead, Hanyuu decides to name her Ouka, combining the characters for “cherry blossom” and “petal”. Riku loves the name. Hanyuu says it has another meaning: in the Ryuun language, there is a word called “ohca”, which means “one who links.” Ryuun-Ohc had a similar name, with “Ohc” meaning “link”. Hanyuu hopes that Ouka will someday link the humans and Ryuun as befitting her name.

A few days later, Hanyuu brings Ouka into Ryuun-Ohc to show her off. Ryuun-Ohc is pleased, but then informs Hanyuu this may be the last time she is able to meet her while functioning normally; Ryuun-Ohc is reaching her operational limit soon. Hanyuu is shocked, but she knew it would happen eventually since Lynoses all across the land were shutting down. Hanyuu apologizes for never doing anything to reward her partner.

Ryuun-Ohc says not to worry and refers to her by her real name, Yeasomul Jedha. Hanyuu is surprised, and Ryuun-Ohc reveals that she has inherited part of Hanyuu’s mother’s personality, the former Yeasomul Jedha. Hanyuu remembers that the elders talked about some Putus who became astral bodies after death and could still affect the world by parasitizing other creatures. Hanyuu’s mother must have been dwelling in the Lynos after her death. Ryuun-Ohc says she kept quiet about her identity as a directive from her mother; if Hanyuu knew all along, she would rely on Ryuun-Ohc all the time and wouldn’t learn anything. Hanyuu admits that she's correct.

Ryuun-Ohc praises Hanyuu for working so hard as the latter sheds tears. Hanyuu’s sword is transformed into light and disappears. Ryuun-Ohc says she may not have any more use for it, as the sword was an extension of her. Hanyuu accepts that the loss of her sword means cutting ties with the Ryuun and living as a human. Ryuun-Ohc says that even though she will cease operations, the Lynos itself will still be partly functional and give her the sword if she summons it.

Ryuun-Ohc tells Hanyuu to be happy and Hanyuu stops her, saying Riku thought of a name for her: Ryuuou. Ryuuou accepts her new name and sends Hanyuu back to the human world. Hanyuu is happy that she has Riku and now Ouka with her. However, those days wouldn't last.

Chapter 9: Tragic Fate[]

Hanyuu walks to the quarry in Yagouchi. It had two roads leading into it, and one went unused. Villagers were afraid of Onigafuchi because of rumors surrounding a mangled corpse found at the swamp, probably the result of a beast or bandit. Hanyuu found the story convenient for her. It had been a while since she last visited the swamp, as sediment turned the water muddy since Ryuuou went offline, taking the purification system with it. Hanyuu looks at her reflection in the swamp, still lamenting her horns, and summons her sword. Hanyuu then looks at the stars in the sky, the Evening Star, and looks at a red jewel that fell out of a necklace Riku gave her.

A flashback occurs to a few days ago. Hanyuu told Riku she was leaving the village, as another demon has appeared. Four days ago, a stonemason’s corpse was found dismembered at Onigafuchi Swamp, who had gone missing earlier while going home drunk and supposedly took the forbidden road to Yagouchi, falling to the curse. Riku already knew this and wanted to keep it hidden from Hanyuu until they learned more. Riku has no idea what he would do if Hanyuu died while fighting a demon, and his wife laments that many hunters have become the hunted in her time. Hanyuu still needs to go, as the demon’s hunting instincts will eventually be awakened and it will become harder to hurt, let alone kill. Riku asks why she still has to leave, and Hanyuu mentions rumors that the foreigner living in Furude Shrine may be the avatar of a demon. Riku says it’s an unfounded rumor, but Hanyuu's already heard the whole thing.

Earlier, Hanyuu went to the assembly hall to bring Riku something and heard him raging over rumors that the foreigner wore a hood to hide her horns. Riku insisted that she actually wore a hood to hide her scars. The elders said nothing back, surprised by Riku’s sudden anger. Shino, as a stand-in for the mayor, helped defend Riku’s wife. Hanyuu was aware that if the demon infestation continued, the villagers would try to prove their suspicions of her, and it would be more troublesome if her horns were revealed. Riku begs Hanyuu to stay as he and Shino convince the villagers, but Hanyuu still worries about Ouka and the thought that other children will hear rumors from their parents and treat her badly. Hanyuu promises to return once she’s disposed of the demon, but she doesn't know how long it will take.

Riku has been worried for a long time after seeing momenys where Hanyuu would get a strange look in her face and stare into the distance for a while. Hanyuu says before she met Riku, all she ever thought about was how she would die and when. Human bodies age as they grow old, mature mentally, and die, but it is the other way around for Ryuun. Their bodies never aged, but their minds regressed as they grew older. They preserved their lives not through cellular metabolism, but through interlocking and reconstitution of molecules. Their thoughts and minds grew simpler as a result, a process called infantilization. Orders sent to their body systems that kept them alive eventually became simplified or omitted, and so their molecular bonds collapse. They were called a “free body” or ghost in this state, unable to change between astral forms and physical forms. Ghost Ryuun drift forever, maintaining their primitive consciousness and unable to interact with other lifeforms. According to Ryuuou, there are exceptions where Ryuun can share abilities and memories by “sympathizing” with the lifeform they use as a medium.

Riku is aware that he’ll die one day, but he doesn’t want to imagine what will happen to Hanyuu afterwards. Hanyuu says she’s been living for too long and forgot how sacred death can be. Hanyuu promises to return and takes off her necklace and gives it to Riku: a device which will allow Riku to speak to her from far away, in case of emergency. Hanyuu thinks this will be her final mission as a Jedha and reinforces her desire to return. Hanyuu gives Riku one last embrace.

A group of thieves who disguised as demons killed people and scared away the villagers, hoping to raid the houses later. However, a real demon appeared and began massacring them. The demon thinks about how pathetic these humans hiding really are, awaiting the presence of one who would ignite his desire to fight.

Hanyuu greets the demon and draws her sword. Demonified Ryuun detected nearby brethren and made their presence known, and Hanyuu was sure that some miscreants were behind this incident. However, she let them run around as bait to attract the Grifys. Grifys instantly bore bloodlust towards Putus the second their instincts awaken, wanting to have a fight to the death. Hanyuu could also feel a bloodlust stirring inside her, her urge to kill growing rapidly. Hanyuu says the beast managed to stay in hiding for three years, almost waiting for the marker to run out.

Hanyuu engages the demon. She delivers a slash to its chest but the wound regenerates, and she sees it has reached terminal symptoms. Hanyuu thought she could take him prisoner and treat him, but she has no choice now. Hanyuu delivers a creed and takes a stance: the Turuy Galkia, or Twin Earth pose, a one-hit-kill technique which could deal fatal blows against a demonified Grifys even when weakened. Hanyuu’s Ryuuou sword normally had one edge, but it changes shape with the incantation and grows two branching blades, able to cut through internal body tissue. With a single stab, it severs the heart's four blood vessels and sends Putus blood flowing into the Grifys, which was like a poison to them.

The demon charges and Hanyuu prepares to deliver the finishing flow but misses completely, a first for her. Hanyuu is knocked aside as punishment. She catches her breath and takes a glimpse at the demon’s chest, seeing that it’s wearing the same necklace she gave Riku earlier. Hanyuu realizes that Riku must have learned that these demons were bandits and went there himself to get evidence to tell Hanyuu, got cornered by them, and had no choice but to awaken his instincts to protect himself. Hanyuu sobs, not wanting to believe it was true. She suspected the possibility when she and Riku first met and were attracted to each other, and always gave him medicine and checked his blood, but got negative results every time. Even while being so close to him, Hanyuu could never sense anything.

The demon hits Hanyuu again, managing to get hold of her sword. Hanyuu figures this is still an advantage for her since the demon is trying to attack with an unfamiliar weapon. The demon swings down with the sword and Hanyuu blocks it with both hands, cutting them up and sending her blood trickling down the blade to burn the demon’s hands. Hanyuu further disorients it by spitting her broken tooth into its eye, regaining her sword. Hanyuu delivers another slash, dealing more damage due to her blood soaking into its wounds.

Hanyuu determines that this demon was the Putus from back then, with its unusual intelligence and order. It was possible but rare for a Putus to die and continue living as a free body, then possess a different body like a human and live on as a Grifys, a “true” demon. The demon confirms that it was indeed the Putus Hanyuu slayed 20 years ago. Hanyuu demands to know why it possessed Riku and demonified and attacked villagers. The demon says it grew tired of killing Grifys endlessly, feeling no challenge from them and wanted to have a greater fight. However, its plans were foiled due to Hanyuu, the strongest of the Putus, going straight for him before his powers fully manifested. He became humiliated and wanted to prove that he was stronger by finding a new host, settling on Riku because he knew it would bring Hanyuu anguish and despair if she fought him.

Hanyuu is at a loss for what to do, and the demon reminds her that if he dies then Riku dies too. Hanyuu angrily slashes at him, the demon enjoying it and laughing. Hanyuu continues attacking wildly, her movements slowing down and exhausting as the demon gets another hit in. Hanyuu feels like this might be the end and wonders if she’ll become a free body when she dies. She also wonders if Riku wants to die here with her. The demon prepares to deliver the finishing blow but Hanyuu takes another glimpse at the necklace and blocks the attack with her sword. She remembers Riku’s parting words, wanting to fulfill his wish to live and not to die. Hanyuu grows her claws and slashes at the demon, blinding him. The demon thinks she’s demonified as well. Claw blades were a demon’s power unleashed by rage and bloodlust. Hanyuu could gain power even greater than demonified Putus, however it would destroy her sense of reason if used too long. Hanyuu says she’ll never forgive the demon and retracts her claw blades, picking up her sword again.

Hanyuu resumes the Turuy Galkia stance and sheds tears, apologizing to Riku for having to kill him. She swears to become a demon, taking in the sins and living as a wrathful god to be hated by all until the day she dies. The demon says he’ll just abandon his body and come back with another one, then suddenly pulls off his necklace and holds it out. The demon voices his trouble separating from the body, and Riku’s voice echoes in Hanyuu's head, telling her it’s alright. Riku says that no matter what happens, he will always love Hanyuu. She thinks that if this were any other time, she’d bashfully hit him and turn her head; memories like that were as clear as yesterday. Hanyuu voices her love for Riku and promises never to forget this pain. Hanyuu bids farewell to Riku as her husband tells her to take care of Ouka. Hanyuu invokes the type-2 form of the Ryuuou and charges.

Chapter 10: Reunion[]

10 years later, Hanyuu returns to Furude Shrine in spring, seeing that the villagers have continued to maintain it. On that fateful night, the villagers had armed themselves and went to Onigafuchi Swamp where they found several dead bandits, the body of Riku who looked like he was fighting them off, and the torn remains of a miko outfit. The villagers understood they accused the Furude priest’s wife of being a demon, and the two were encouraged to prove their innocence by fighting off bandits but failed. Shino was most shocked to hear this. Although the villagers tried to search for Hanyuu, they found her blood and footprints abruptly ending at a cliff overlooking a river, concluding she fell off with a bandit. Shino cries, regretting she never fought harder for her friends and did more to convince the villagers.

To atone, the villagers decided they would adopt Ouka, seeing her as the daughter of the village’s saviors. Under the guardianship of the Kimiyoshi family led by Shino and the Sonozakis, the village officials, Ouka was raised so she could run Furude Shrine herself when she was of age.

After the battle, Hanyuu lost most of her ability to sustain a physical body. She wasn’t entirely a free body, but she couldn’t maintain a body that could be seen by humans, so it seemed like she went missing. Hanyuu believed there was a mental aspect as well, as she could go berserk if she pushed herself without recovering. Hanyuu wished the best for her daughter as she recovered at other Lynoses and fought Grifys and humans posing as them in various lands.

Hanyuu saw it as atonement. She looks at the same cherry blossom tree she and Riku saw that day, reminded of many happy memories with her husband. Until recently, Hanyuu would cry uncontrollably whenever she thought of Riku, but now it only works when she taints her happy memories with sorrow. She isn’t sure if she’s growing numb or stronger, but her feelings for Riku never fade. Not once did she regret ever meeting and marrying him.

Suddenly, a blue-haired girl appears and asks who Hanyuu is with a “meep”. Hanyuu is shocked since nobody should be able to see her. Hanyuu could see that this girl definitely resembled her daughter. The girl asks what business she has at her father’s tree. Hanyuu tries to hold back her feelings and introduces herself as Oyashiro-sama, the guardian deity of the shrine. The girl introduces herself as Ouka Furude and nipahs.

Chapter 11: The Meaning of Kindness[]

10 years later, an older Ouka practices her sword swings, using a wooden sword to attack a tree. Hanyuu watches her and is impressed that Ouka managed to perform a thrust move from the Turuy Galkia stance. This technique took Hanyuu a considerable amount of time to perfect, and though she only showed it to Ouka a few times and never taught her anything, Ouka recreated it perfectly. Hanyuu says that Ouka might be better off becoming a swordsmanship instructor. Ouka asks if she’ll teach her thrusts, but Hanyuu says she needs to focus on the basics more.

It was 10 years since Hanyuu became involved in Ouka’s life. She stopped saying meep and nipah, and she gained a certain luster at 21 years of age. Hanyuu reminisces on the day they reunited. Hanyuu planned to leave the shrine quickly, but Ouka suddenly asked her to come to her house. Ouka says she was living by herself for a long time and wants someone to talk to, and Hanyuu is confused since Shino should have raised her. Ouka says she was indeed being raised by Shino, and when she turned 10 two weeks ago, she asked to live at Furude Shrine, to protect the place her birth parents treasured.

A flashback occurs. Ouka tells Shino she wants to move out and thanks her for teaching everything she needs to take care of herself. Shino asks if that’s really necessary since Ouka is only 10 and can still perform her rituals if she stays, and asks if Ouka dislikes living here. Ouka says that’s not the case, as the Kimiyoshis all treated her well. She’d seen that the Furude house had fallen to ruin due to nobody living in it for years, and she couldn’t forget about it. Ouka can’t remember her parents at all, but she knew there were happy memories in that place, so she couldn't leave it ruined forever. Shino sheds tears and asks if she’s really ready for that, and Ouka promises to do her best. Shino says her son will come by to help from time to time, and though Ouka is head of the Furude family, she will always be a Kimiyoshi.

Hanyuu begins to cry, knowing that her daughter still treasured memories of her parents at her young age. Hanyuu so much wanted to tell Ouka she was her mother and hug her. Ouka is confused by Hanyuu’s expression and asks what’s wrong, saying she looks scared. Hanyuu tries to deny it but thinks maybe she is, as she abandoned Ouka and left her in Shino’s care. Hanyuu had no right to be standing before her like this, yet she couldn’t say goodbye. Ouka directs Hanyuu to come inside and takes her hand. Hanyuu grips back, feeling forgotten warmth return after 10 years.

Ouka asks if “God” really is her name, and Hanyuu says her nickname is Oyashiro-sama. Ouka asks what her real name is, and Hanyuu hesitates. She can’t say she’s Hanyuu since Ouka would know that’s her dead mother’s name. Hanyuu instead says she’s Hai-Ryun Yeasomul Jedha; the name she abandoned before became apt for who she was now. Ouka has trouble repeating it and asks if there’s a simpler name. Hanyuu is painfully reminded of the day Riku gave her a new name.

Ouka decides to call her Hanyuu, as it’s a name fitting for a god and the most important person to her. Ouka smiles, and Hanyuu is speechless. Hanyuu narrates that in the 10 years since she left Ouka, she fought Grifys tirelessly, having a hatred that never died down and a void of loneliness inside her heart. She only came back to Onigafuchi to rest. Ouka’s words were precious to her, yet she knew she’d regret accepting them one day. Ouka had no idea Hanyuu was her mother nor did she need to know.

Ever since that day, Hanyuu lived in the ritual storehouse. She couldn't bear to live in the Furude house because of happy memories she had there, and Ouka never questioned her choice of living space. Hanyuu never forgot about scouting for Grifys and would always inform Ouka whenever she left. Activity decreased ever since she defeated that Putus, but there were still disturbances from time to time. In the meantime, Hanyuu spoke with Ouka, trained her in the sword, and gave all sorts of advice. Their routine continued even after Ouka got married and had a family. Hanyuu couldn’t believe Ouka would marry Shino’s son Shouji. She remembers that back when Ouka was born, Shino said Ouka should marry one of her sons. Hanyuu and Riku agreed, and Shino became overjoyed to finally have a daughter. Shouji married Ouka and changed his surname to Furude, ensuring the Furude name could keep going. Ouka then had Fuuka and discovered the joy of being a mother. However, Shouji and Fuuka couldn't see Hanyuu.

Ouka interrupts Hanyuu’s reminiscence. Hanyuu is distracted by how Ouka’s eyes remind her of Riku’s. Ouka thanks her for the swordsmanship training. Back then, Hanyuu was training with a sword in the forest behind the shrine, and Ouka happened to be collecting firewood nearby. Ouka liked the sword dance she saw Hanyuu perform and asked to be taught, wanting the ability to defend herself against any bandits that might invade the shrine. Hanyuu opted to teach her the bare minimum, as she couldn’t be in Onigafuchi forever.

Hanyuu is surprised that Ouka kept up with all of her training. Ouka says she was taught never to want things unless she was serious about it, and to do her best to not embarrass her teachers. Hanyuu is especially surprised at Ouka being able to learn the Turuy Galkia. It was a sword technique that allowed even a woman to pierce steel, but it made a lot of impact and recoil to the body’s joints. Done poorly, it would break your bones. Hanyuu could master it due to her natural genetic characteristics as a Ryuun and training from a young age. She thought it was impossible for humans to learn, and though Ouka’s technique was rough, she was able to get the movements and posture correct. Hanyuu felt somewhat threatened that Ouka could learn it just from imitating her. Hanyuu thinks Ouka must have the characteristics of Ryuun and Putus, a reminder that her daughter has her inhuman blood.

Hanyuu asks why Ouka wanted to learn the ways of the sword, as she believes she didn't want it just to fight off bandits. Hanyuu observed that Ouka was mischievous and spoke more maturely than she should, but she was quite gentle. Ouka trained daily even when Hanyuu wasn’t around.

Ouka puts on a serious expression and says she thought becoming a sword-wielding miko would be awesome. Hanyuu is floored. Ouka goes on about how boys respect and yearn for mikos who act as their god’s representatives, and how a miko battling a demon would be beautiful. Hanyuu doesn't know what to say, and Ouka says she became inspired on that day she saw Hanyuu training; that was the kind of miko she wanted to be. Hanyuu questions why Riku had to pass his dumb interests onto his daughter and swears to give him a beating once they reunite in heaven.

Ouka laughs, as she was obviously joking. She heard from Shino that her dad was weird like that and asks Hanyuu how her impression was. Hanyuu is displeased, but she remembered that Riku would do the same thing despite getting beaten up constantly, probably just him trying to be considerate by getting Hanyuu used to normal life. Ouka had a mysterious aura about her that allowed Hanyuu to forgive her. She could stir up trouble and end it on a positive note.

Ouka says she did think Hanyuu’s sword training was cool, and though it might be childish, she also wanted to become strong. She wanted a strong heart and the support to believe in herself, and the confidence to do something for the village that her parents gave their lives to protect. Shino always talked about how wonderful the two of them were. Hanyuu is conflicted, as Ouka had been told a mix of truth and lies: Hanyuu left the village to fight demons to protect Riku and Ouka and reclaim their peaceful lives. If she learned the truth, Ouka might come to hate the villagers for driving her parents out and question her birth and existence. Ouka believes the strength to protect the village is her duty as successor to the Furude family. Ouka’s primary role is to protect the shrine and revere Oyashiro-sama, yet Shino would scold her if she knew she was doing sword training.

Hanyuu asks if Ouka remembers her parents. Ouka couldn’t remember them at all, but as time passed and she learned how her parents were praised as saviors, she grew to feel inferior. As their daughter her job was to bury and revere them and protect the shrine, but she was unsure if that was enough. Ouka decided she wanted strength to exterminate demons and save villagers, just like her parents. Hanyuu was saddened to see Ouka’s loneliness. She understood that Ouka wanted to prove she really was the daughter of the village’s heroes, and that Ouka wanted not to be recognized as “the daughter of the heroes” or “the Furude daughter”, but as Ouka Furude herself.

Hanyuu tells Ouka that while it is admirable to want to live up to her parents’ legacy, she is still just Ouka Furude; she shouldn’t be chasing ideals. Hanyuu respects Ouka’s kindness and diligence, but if she were asked if Ouka could be like her parents, Hanyuu would say no. Ouka thinks she’s saying she has no talent but Hanyuu says it’s about individuality: though she’s heading down the same path, no one can be Ouka’s parents, and no one can be Ouka either. Ouka must live as best she can to be Ouka Furude.

Hanyuu says that if Ouka were someone who didn’t meet the villagers’ expectations, she wouldn't be as praised as she is now. She is still someone looked up to by villagers, and that is wonderful. Ouka feels embarrassed at the compliment and says she did everything she could not to disappoint anybody, so it was not wonderful. She sometimes feels unworthy of all the praise. Hanyuu says that’s what being kind is all about, regretting everything she does while seeking her ideals. Ouka should be proud of who she is right now.

Ouka begins to cry and asks if it’s alright for her to stay the way she is. Hanyuu says there will be a time where her kindness will make everyone happy, and that is surely what her parents would have wanted. Ouka smiles and thanks her, grateful that she met Hanyuu. Ouka says she unconsciously tried to act tough to live up to people’s expectations, and since they always showed her awkward consideration, she couldn’t notice her mistakes. Because Ouka and the villagers were so nice to each other, this fostered an environment where Ouka had no opportunities to open her heart to anyone, and nobody could point out when she did something wrong.

Ouka says that Hanyuu is like a mother to her, and the latter is taken aback for a bit. Hanyuu tries to stop herself from crying. Ouka grabs her hand and asks if she’ll continue to stay with her, and Hanyuu affirms it. Hanyuu still wonders why she was wishing for her daughter to grow up happy while she herself was living like a demon and couldn’t even confess the truth to her. She was doing something that might cause trouble, just when things were looking up for Ouka. In the end, all she wants is to live with her beloved daughter forever.

One day during sword training, the clouds begin to darken, a sign of impending rain. Hanyuu changes to astral form and heads home, hoping to warn Ouka since she was doing laundry. Many times in the past Ouka failed to anticipate the rain and got sad when her clothes got wet. Hanyuu wonders why she never picked up on this. Hanyuu remembers a prior conversation with Ouka, where her husband Shouji was finally returning from school by the castle. He was studying agriculture under Riku’s father while Ouka and Fuuka were left to tend to the shrine. The Furude family would finally be together.

Hanyuu heads to the Furude family garden and hears Shino in the distance. She spies on Ouka and Shino talking, still in astral form. Shino’s features still looked the same, yet 20 years of responsibility were clearly taking their toll. Shino’s husband became in poor health so she assumed all of his duties, and Shino seemed more composed because of it. Shino spoke to Ouka frequently, however Hanyuu instinctively avoided her once it became apparent Shino couldn’t see her. Hanyuu could see that their conversation this time was serious. Shino tells Ouka that the man she told her about yesterday has passed away. A chill runs down Hanyuu’s spine.

Ouka asks how many that makes this month, and Shino replies 20. All the physicians and medicine men she spoke to have never seen a plague like this before and don’t know what to do. Ouka can’t believe this and asks what else they could try. Shino says they’ve tried everything, and the chance of patients recovering is hopeless. Shino fears the village may be destroyed for real at this rate. The mortality rate rises every day, and the crop fields are full of diseased corpses, so even the produce is going to die out. Shino promises she’s doing everything in her power to find a solution. Although she didn’t say it, seemingly the only option left was to abandon the village and find a new home. Hanyuu knew that even if all the healthy villagers moved somewhere else, it would cause trouble with other villages: they would be told not to bring their plague, and they would be turned away since there wouldn't be enough resources. More people would probably die from that than from the disease.

Shino worries about Ouka since she’s always had a weak composition and especially worries about Fuuka. She hands her some Chinese herbal medicine and leaves. AS Ouka wonders what to do, Hanyuu reveals herself. Ouka sees she was listening all along and says she herself only found out about the disease just now. She believed there was a seasonal cold going around, and Shino withheld information so as not to worry her.

Hanyuu understood that Shino only told Ouka now since she was ready to leave Onigafuchi. Shino must’ve known how attached Ouka was to the village and never told her until the last minute, wanting to do everything she could beforehand. Ouka laments having to abandon the village her parents protected and asks Hanyuu what she would do. Hanyuu thinks she’d be sad if the village became deserted, but she still had Ryuuou’s functions and other Lynoses with which to carry out her mission. She would go with Ouka and her family wherever they went, ensuring they could live new lives.

Hanyuu tells Ouka she is now the guardian deity of her and not the village, so she’ll go with her. Ouka gives a sad smile and thanks. She says Hanyuu has been a great help to her like she was 8 years ago and is struck with inspiration. Ouka asks Hanyuu to please make some medicine. 8 years ago, Ouka suddenly came down with an illness that caused rashes, long fevers, and respiratory failure that led to death. There was no treatment for it, and many victims would die from exhaustion after weeks of agony. When Ouka got sick, all of the villagers quarantined her and wouldn’t go near. Shino tried to help but Ouka asked her not to, not wanting to get her sick either. Hanyuu watched over Ouka for a while but grew tired and decided to use Ryuuou’s functions to make medicine for her.

Ouka says that those who survived the illness had hideous scars, but Hanyuu’s medicine didn’t leave any on her. The entire village was astounded at Ouka’s recovery, believing it to be a miracle of Oyashiro-sama and increasing donations to the shrine. Hanyuu says she could make medicine for the entire village using Ryuuou, but she won’t. Ryuun law dictates that they must coexist with intelligent life and never interfere more than necessary. The Ryuun never wanted to invade Earth, and though they assimilated humans and exterminated Grifys, using Ryuun tech to solve problems unrelated to those was seen as rejecting the land’s culture and causality.

Hanyuu says that everyone has a fate. She bent the law since Ouka was half-Ryuun, however she couldn’t just eradicate an entire disease and let those who were supposed to die live. Ouka asks if it’s fate then that Onigafuchi gets destroyed, a rage rising in her voice as she asks what reason Hanyuu has for letting everyone die. Hanyuu flinches, knowing that a person’s lack of reason for saving lives is proof they are capable of conscience and reasoning.

Ouka pleads with Hanyuu to reconsider. Hanyuu remembers how she herself petitioned the Ryuun elders and Ryuuou with similar concerns about coexistence with humans and military development. Hanyuu tells Ouka she can exterminate the virus, but what of the crop fields? The deceased humans and animals are polluting the soil and water, and this year will be worse than usual; what will Ouka do about the food shortage? Ouka struggles to answer, and Hanyuu says she could definitely create more food for everyone, but what if neighboring villages suffering from disease and famine hear Onigafuchi has a surplus of food? Conflicts over the supply would arise, and bloodshed would occur. In the end, will there be more casualties from illness or from infighting? Hanyuu asks Ouka to think about what happens after she saves all the villagers.

Ouka says that before, she gained renewed hope when Hanyuu showed her a miracle, but now she is wrong for relying on her? She asks which is more painful, the despair at being powerless or the frustration at being able to do something but having no position to do it. A saddened Ouka wishes she never learned about miracles or supernatural powers if she knew it would lead to this and could’ve convinced herself there was absolutely nothing she could do. Hanyuu is shocked to her core at the sound of this. She remembers the elders’ warnings that a miracle that happens ceases to be one. Hanyuu realizes she made a mistake of giving Ouka hope.

Ouka turns away from Hanyuu when Fuuka suddenly runs up to her warning of trouble. The group goes to the house, where Shouji is lying on the floor and writhing in agony. He yells at everyone to stay back, to contact the Sonozaki residence and to get away from the house. Ouka can’t believe that her dearest older brother and husband was going to die from illness. Ouka goes back to see Hanyuu and prostrates herself, pleading that she save her husband. She apologizes for not thinking of the long-term consequences and for being selfish. Ouka says Shouji has studied agriculture for a long time and has worked harder than her to improve the village, so she doesn't want him to die. Ouka tearfully offers to die herself if it means Shouji will live, and Hanyuu asks what will become of Fuuka. Ouka says Shouji may do a better job raising her than her shortsighted mother. Hanyuu remembers what Riku said to her long ago about marriage and realizes she doesn’t want Ouka to deny meeting her.

Hanyuu gives Ouka a pouch containing fever medicine and a sedative. She can make the medicine by dawn, however she wants Ouka to help Shouji hold out as much as possible. Ouka accepts her gift, and Hanyuu says it’s been a long time since she made medicine so she may get the amount wrong, so it’s up to Ouka to distribute any extras.

The next day, Ouka uses Hanyuu’s medicine to nurse Shouji back to health. While distributing the rest, she tells the villagers that Oyashiro-sama taught her how to make it. Ouka became hailed as Oyashiro-sama’s reincarnation while the medicine was seen as “demon medicine”. Those suffering from illnesses in other villages came to Onigafuchi seeking the cure, giving food and supplies in exchange. Ouka was pleased, proving that she was indeed the daughter of those heroes.

Ouka thanks Hanyuu, now knowing what it means to be kind for others. She promises to think more about how to help the villagers find happiness using her own strength. Hanyuu agrees to continue staying with Ouka, however she can’t shake this anxious feeling.

(The TIP Swordsmanship 101: Beginner’s Course is unlocked.)

Chapter 12: Looming Shadows[]

Hanyuu is woken up from sleep in the ritual storehouse when Ouka barges in and says the medicine in the warehouse has disappeared. Hanyuu looks at the warehouse for herself and sees that only the chest containing the medicine was stolen while the other supplies were untouched. Ouka is sure she left the medicine chest right here, having planned to bring it to the northern settlement. Hanyuu inspects the scene and thinks three men were involved, who broke in right after it started raining last night. Ouka says she brought the medicine in before dinner as soon as she got it from Hanyuu.

It was several months since Ouka earned praise as the second coming of Oyashiro-sama for her medicine. She gave it out to people wealthy or poor, and people flocked from all over to get some. Over time, distribution fell thin since Hanyuu couldn’t make enough to satisfy the demand, and complaints began to rise over how slow they were, leading to this theft. Hanyuu regrets how shallow humans can truly be, putting themselves first and paying no mind to Ouka’s generosity.

Hanyuu asks if Ouka is sure she locked the door to the warehouse, as there are no signs the lock was broken or tampered with. She asks who else has a key to the warehouse, and Ouka says Shino Kimiyoshi and Mao Sonozaki, acting head of the Sonozakis, had one. Ouka doesn’t want to doubt them, but Hanyuu says they can't overlook the possibility. Hanyuu doesn’t want to suspect her old friend Shino, leaving Mao the only option. Ouka says she’ll summon both Shino and Mao and ask them directly. Hanyuu is surprised, suggesting they instead summon Shino and then Mao separately to talk about it. Ouka says this problem concerns the fate of the village, and so the Three Families need to gather and discuss future countermeasures. Hanyuu understands that Ouka doesn’t want the Three Families’ relationships to become rocky from meeting with the heads separately, but given the relationships of “those two”, it was bound to be bad. Ouka says doubt grows when you pile it up, and that having a talk without one of the suspects present just invites needless assumptions. Ouka says she’s going to give others the proper thought to make them happy. She will also resolve the Three Families’ “problem” and asks Hanyuu to watch over her. As Ouka summons the two heads, Hanyuu wonders if this will really work out. Ouka had become so happy and proactive after the medicine went out, but she was surely pushing herself too hard.

Ouka explains the situation to Shino and Mao while Hanyuu watches in astral form. Ouka apologizes and Shino says it’s not necessary, as thieves will break in no matter what if they want to steal, and is happy that Ouka’s family is alright. Shino sees the issue is about the lock to the warehouse and asks if it was necessary to bring Mao here, referring to her derisively. Mao scoffs in response.

Mao Sonozaki was the wife of the late Sonozaki family head who passed away a few years ago. Mao was 3 years older than Ouka and was running the family in all but name while still raising her own child son as the successor. Mao and Shino bicker as Hanyuu watches exasperatedly. Mao was like Ouka’s big sister and originally wasn’t a Sonozaki, being the only daughter of a bunch of gangsters who ran an inn. After a love affair with the Sonozaki successor, Mao married into the family. Mao wasn’t seen fondly by the village elders as she was an outsider, and Mao and Shino could never get along as Shino had even tried to interfere with Mao’s marriage. The two of them would insult each other constantly, to the point where Shino would send representatives to village meetings. Ouka mediated and put in good words for both Shino and Mao, and Mao would open up to Ouka and dote on her like a sister.

Hanyuu praises Ouka’s strength and perseverance. She wonders why Shino hates Mao so much when she knew her as kind and accepting towards outsiders, and why Ouka seemed to defend Mao a lot; something must have happened between Shino and Ouka.

Ouka asks to see their keys. Hanyuu figures that the goal was determining if negligence or betrayal had happened. If the thieves had merely stolen the key then it could be fixed with a simple reprimand, but the latter option meant someone violated Ouka’s trust. Hanyuu wonders why Ouka had to call the two together, as Shino and Mao would suspect each other.

Shino says her key is in a safe spot and suggests that the people in Mao's father's organization stole the medicine. Mao and Shino argue some more. Hanyuu is about to tell Ouka to call it quits when Mao asks Ouka if she also suspects her men. Ouka denies it, as she trusts both Mao and Shino and called the meeting today to discuss it. She wouldn’t have brought them together if she believed one of them did it, but it is still a problem if one of them used the keys without permission. Ouka says the most important thing is protecting against future thefts and asks the other heads to please work with her. Hanyuu admires how Ouka earnestly told them to their faces how much she trusts them. Shino and Mao realized their quarreling was pointless in this emergency.

Mao says that it might not involve the theft, but she heard that some men who served her father found many instances of demon medicine being sold in his town. Ouka and Shino are surprised, as this was the first time they heard of it. Mao heard it last month, but her men were investigating it as they spoke. Shino asks why she never told them and Mao says they would’ve suspected her if she didn’t provide proof, but Ouka’s trust convinced her to say it. Shino apologizes for being wrong about her, and Mao apologizes for keeping it hidden for so long.

Mao explains that "demon medicine" was being sold as a wonder drug for the epidemic, but many of them were imitations taking advantage of the rumors, so Mao never paid it much thought. Last week, one of Mao’s men found a trade that was selling the real thing and seized it. While Mao still didn’t have proof someone was selling black market demon medicine, this might still be connected to the theft. Ouka wonders if she made a mistake giving out this medicine for free, and Mao assures her it was the right thing to do; people looking to get rich quick would have done it even without Ouka’s medicine. Hanyuu sees that Mao was truly empathetic. Shino asks Ouka when she’ll make medicine for the northern settlement, and Hanyuu whispers to Ouka it will be ready by that evening. Shion asks Mao to have a ceasefire, wanting to put on a little trick.

Shino plans to put new medicine in the warehouse and watch over it at night in turns with Mao and Ouka. They spread info to the villagers saying the medicine would be brought to the northern settlement and needed help. Any bandits would surely attack the warehouse that night.

If Shino and Mao themselves stood watch and someone else came to steal the medicine, then they could clear each other of suspicion. The three heads wait in a cold room at night and confirm the locations of each key. Shion deduces the thieves' mindset, being that they must be aware a trap has been set for them and will resort to stealing little bits of medicine at a time.

Hanyuu is relieved that deep down, Shino was still the kind woman she knew. Shino vouched for Hanyuu’s innocence back when she was suspected of being a demon, and Shino felt deep regret for letting Riku and Hanyuu get killed as a result of the rumors. Shino had seen that the act of accepting outsiders was negative.

A flashback occurs to after the meeting, after Mao went home. Shino confesses to Ouka her desire to accept Mao wholeheartedly, yet the villagers look down on outsiders. Shino knows that mindset will change with the times, but maybe not soon. Shino really admires Mao’s capability, but who knows what would happen if Shino opposed the rest of the village. They would criticize Shino for standing up for Mao and slander Ouka for being born to an outsider. Shino had to act like she opposed Mao, anticipating that the kind-hearted Ouka would stand up for her and defy her mother. Ouka understands Shino’s reasons and hopes Mao will understand in the future. Hanyuu could see they really were mother and daughter.

Hanyuu wonders why she still remained in the village. Ouka had Shino for a mother and had a good family, so maybe it was time for Hanyuu to depart. Hanyuu’s introspection is interrupted when she hears a door slide open. Fuuka, who was supposed to be sleeping, opens the warehouse with Ouka's key and pulls out some radishes, leaving the medicine alone. Fuuka then starts walking away from the shrine and Hanyuu follows. Fuuka goes a long way and gives the radishes to some small puppies and their mother. Hanyuu is relieved since Fuuka just wanted to help some dogs and had no idea what she was doing, but she would surely get a harsh reprimand from Ouka. Hanyuu still wonders about who stole the medicine when she hears Mao confronting someone.

Hanyuu runs back to the scene, where the three heads were confronting three unknown men, a familiar chest at their feet. Ouka politely asks the men to return to medicine and is willing to hear them out. The men put on a bold front, wanting to get rich off of their thievery. The men pull out daggers and Hanyuu wonders if she should reveal herself and pass it off as “the work of Oyashiro-sama”, but Ouka bravely holds her ground. One man charges and Mao punches him in the face. Shino knocks the second man to the ground. Ouka uses a wooden sword to disarm the third man and threatens him.

The men get tied up as Mao compliments Ouka’s skill. Mao calls out to a group of men hiding nearby led by her subordinate Hyougo, who laments that they couldn’t get their chance to shine. The group had several Sonozaki and Kimiyoshi associates, ensuring that the Sonozakis and Kimiyoshis could clear each other of suspicion. Hyougo’s men take the captured bandits to be stored in the Sonozaki estate's storehouse until the next morning. Ouka plops down in relief, and the others laugh. Fuuka suddenly appears and confesses that she unlocked the warehouse to help feed a dog and her puppies. Ouka reprimands her as Mao and Shino laugh, saying she ought to let her off easily. Ouka hugs her daughter.

The next morning, the villagers gather at the Furude Shrine to see the bandits, who are locked up and on display. The villagers pile on insults to the thieves as Ouka and Shino watch. Shino figures Mao spread the word and Ouka asks why the thieves are on display like this, as they should’ve been sent to the magistrate. Shino says there’s still something that concerns them, but they didn’t need to go this far. Hanyuu watches the criminals emotionlessly.

Mao Sonozaki introduces herself to the crowd and asks the thieves to reveal everything, but they stay silent. Mao calls her subordinates Hyougo and Azuma to pull out a black iron apparatus. Hanyuu, Ouka, and Shino are confused as to the bizarre object. Mao's men put masks shaped like human faces onto the apparatus as she explains it was a tool used for dentistry, for people who would shut their mouths from the pain of getting cavities removed. Mao demonstrates by spinning a wheel on the object, causing the jaws on the masks to open and eventually break apart. The thieves are horrified.

Mao asks the men if they would like to speak now, and they all reply in fear. A sigh of relief spreads across the villagers as Ouka and Shino watch with disgust. Even Hanyuu felt this was going too far and wonders why Mao would do this when the village already fears her. Ouka asks Shino if they should stop her, but she says they should watch longer. The men reveal that they were bribed by someone to steal the medicine, and Mao demands to know who. Ouka asks what’s going on, and Shino says this is too many people for a get-rich-quick scheme, and it’s especially concerning since they stole a chest with the Furude crest on it. Mao threatens the ringleader some more and he says he’ll be killed if he confesses. Ouka finally steps in as Shino stands back. Hanyuu understands what’s going on: Mao is acting cold and cruel in front of the villagers to contrast Ouka’s kindness, increasing the villager’s unity. Villagers who saw this would spread word about what terror awaited thieves, deterring further break-ins to the warehouse. Ouka was unaware of the plan.

Ouka chides Mao for being too cruel. Mao says they can’t let them go since they stole Onigafuchi’s secret medicine, and the villagers hesitantly agree. Ouka says they should send the thieves to the magistrate, and that harming them goes against the laws of the village. Mao agrees and gives the ringleader one last threat, saying that their benefactor will likely have them all killed once they learn they were captured by Onigafuchi. Mao promises that if they confess who bribed them, they’ll be under the Sonozakis' protection. The man reveals it was the feudal lord.

Mao is shocked at this revelation and calls Shino over. The man explains the feudal lord sent a messenger to them asking them to steal the medicine, promising wild riches if they succeeded. Shino and Mao realize the gravity of the situation, but Ouka doesn’t understand. Shino says the feudal lord of this region is greedy and aggressive, willing to do anything to make others obey him. Sooner or later, a decree would come that Onigafuchi couldn’t defy. Hanyuu thinks it’s too late to regret making the medicine, as word of it has already spread outside the land. Mao takes care of the thieves while Shino is sent to take care of the delivery. Ouka goes to help.

Looking at the crowd, Hanyuu becomes concerned over the look in some young villagers’ eyes and moves to follow them, but gets distracted by Ouka asking her to help. Hanyuu would regret that oversight.

(The TIP Swordsmanship 201: Advanced Course is unlocked.)

Chapter 13: At the End of Hatred and Despair[]

Mao, Shino, and Ouka meet at the Furude house. Mao says her uncle just returned from an official summons by the feudal lord, who plans to monopolize all the demon medicine in the nation. In this region, Sonozaki family members held positions of regional governor for decades, which involved supervising the annual tribute and directing villagers as per the feudal lord’s rule. Mao’s husband was the former governor, and her uncle on her father’s side took the role when he passed away. Mao says that the feudal lord wants whoever created the demon medicine to turn over the instructions as to its ingredients and how to make it. Ouka asks what difference it makes to hand over the prescription, and Shino says the difference is Onigafuchi being the only village who can make the medicine vs other people gaining the ability to make it.

Ouka still doesn’t quite seem to understand. Mao asks if Ouka is really okay with that and says she worked hard to make that medicine and deserves compensation for it. The shrine maiden replies that Oyashiro-sama simply taught her how to make it, so she has no right to receive anything. The feudal lord promises to waive this year’s annual tribute and give support to other villagers in exchange for the prescription. However, the feudal lord will have complete ownership of the demon medicine, and the village will have to buy a fixed amount from him every year. Mao can’t guarantee their situation will change even if they hand it over to him. Ouka wonders if it really was right to ask Hanyuu to make medicine, as Onigafuchi has been saddled with many new conflicts of interest because of it.

Shino asks if it’s possible to request a reappraisal of the decree, and Mao says the feudal lord doesn’t understand the situation properly; supposedly he plans to implement the decree soon if the medicine’s easy to replicate. If it takes more time and effort to produce the materials, then they might have more room for negotiation. Mao asks Ouka if it’s really true that Oyashiro-sama came to her in a dream. She isn’t accusing her of lying, but she wonders if by giving away the prescription, they would call down Oyashiro-sama’s wrath or something. Ouka briefly thinks of an angry Hanyuu and tries to suppress her laughter. Shino asks if that could actually happen. Ouka is tempted to say “no” since she knows what Hanyuu is really like, but she recalls Hanyuu’s warning that this medicine will cause strife and to think seriously about what the future will bring. Ouka asks to have some time and will give an answer in a few days.

Hanyuu agrees to give Ouka the prescription. It will take some time, but this recipe should allow humans to create the medicine with their current technology. Hanyuu was prepared for it as soon as she brought the medicine into the world, and she knew smart people would analyze the ingredients and figure it out eventually. Ouka thanks Hanyuu for her help. Hanyuu says this medicine can cure the plague running through the entire country and asks if Ouka’s really okay with this. People will live with the medicine but die without it, so what will happen if the medicine is sold in such a life or death situation? The ill will desperately seek it to survive, and sellers will ramp up the price, and people are already resorting to illegal activities to get some for themselves. Hanyuu asks if Ouka can bear the responsibility of spreading something so advanced through the world and giving rise to suffering. Ouka understands her request to save the village was fulfilled, but it has exploded beyond her intentions. She accepts that she was short-sighted and never understood that the medicine would inspire wicked desires.

Hanyuu ruminates on Shino’s involvement. She was Ouka’s mother yet she drove her into a corner and wasn’t here to help her. Hanyuu understood Shino’s position, but it wasn’t enough; what was needed was the resolve to destroy everything to protect Ouka and her family.

Hanyuu tells Ouka to leave the village. Everyone wants the demon medicine so long as she’s around, so if she left then the village would go back to normal. As the search for Ouka went on, the medicine would eventually run out and people would lose interest in Onigafuchi, bringing it peace. Hanyuu is aware that Ouka does not want to leave the village, but her presence here is hurting her loved ones, and so Ouka would not be happy if she was causing misery. Ouka doesn't need to leave forever though, as she can return once the dust has settled. Hanyuu promises to protect Ouka’s family and keep their peace, even at the cost of her life. Ouka asks to have more time, as she doesn’t have the courage to make a decision. Hanyuu is surprised that Ouka might actually consider her plan, realizing that Ouka must still be worrying about resolving the issue. Hanyuu says she’ll make enough medicine to match the current demand and will have it by tomorrow afternoon.

Hanyuu finishes her business with Ryuuou and puts the completed medicine in a trunk, then carries it off. Hanyuu takes a deserted road back to the shrine, as she couldn’t shift into astral form while carrying a physical object. Hanyuu has a bad feeling since she came across Shino and Mao yesterday while going to the swamp.

A flashback occurs. Mao and several subordinates called for a palanquin, almost as if they were going far away. Hanyuu in her astral form watches Mao and Shino talk. Shino wishes Mao luck in petitioning her uncle to wait before talking to the feudal lord about the medicine. Shino says they can deal with the monopoly and the prescription, but they cannot consent to the other matter. Hanyuu is intrigued. Shino and Mao are disgusted that the feudal lord would take advantage of a sick country by using the demon medicine as a bargaining chip, and Ouka would surely disagree if she knew what was going on. Hanyuu understands: the feudal lord was using the provision of the medicine against a neighboring country he was fighting over territory with. Shino says she’s going to negotiate with a nearby village to store some extra medicine, in case the plague returns again. The two wanted to keep Ouka in the dark while working to resolve things by themselves, but Hanyuu became even more convinced Ouka should leave.

Hanyuu quickens her pace in carrying the medicine trunk. She felt her sadness would go away once she saw Ouka’s smiling face, and if she told her what Mao and Shino said, it might strengthen her resolve to leave the village. When Hanyuu returns to the shrine, she finds villagers with bloodshot eyes and carrying weapons, with a wounded Ouka dangling from a tree. The villagers chuckle at Ouka’s pain, and Hanyuu sees they were all people who took the demon medicine and escaped death. The villagers prod Ouka and tell her to answer, but she says nothing. They say they already killed her husband, but if they bring out her daughter then she’ll spill it. Ouka looks up in shock and the villagers say they didn’t kill Fuuka, they just beat her up until she started coughing up blood. One villager asks if they should be doing this since she's Oyashiro-sama’s miko, but another says the girl sold her soul to demons, so that makes them demon-slaying heroes.

Hanyuu watches in anger and sees that these men were a sect who came to Onigafuchi recently. She knew she had a bad feeling when she saw them looking at Ouka weirdly the other day, but they don’t know the true terror of demons. A villager asks if there's any treasure, as the feudal lord will have their lives if they return empty-handed. Another says it’s fine, as he followed the miko to confirm it. The group gloats about how they faked having illness so they could get some medicine and sell it at a high price at the next village over. Hanyuu becomes even more enraged at the villagers stepping over Ouka’s goodwill. She goes on a rampage, massacring the villagers for harming Ouka. Hanyuu loses her mind as she wills the humans to die.

When Hanyuu comes to, the entire place has been set on fire. The ground is littered with corpses and blood. Hanyuu wipes some blood off of her claws and turns to face some soldiers near her. Hanyuu admires the soldiers’ bravery and quickly kills the three of them. As Hanyuu continues her killing spree, she wonders just how many she’s killed; 5 commanding officers were dead, and most of the enemy forces were in retreat. Hanyuu looks down at the village that was now filled with torchlights, pitying the humans for earning God’s divine punishment.

Hanyuu continues to demean the villagers as she watches them flee in fright. She relishes in the thought the villagers will experience despair when they find the bridge connecting Onigafuchi to another village has collapsed. Hanyuu accepts she is now a demon, feeling lonely since not even Ouka would believe her current appearance. Hanyuu thinks this is the only path for her and that Ouka will understand. Hanyuu hears more people praying instead of screaming and mocks them.

Hanyuu feels another presence behind her and sees Ouka wielding a katana. Hanyuu asks if her wounds are okay, but Ouka simply stares at her coldly. Ouka collapses from her injuries and Hanyuu rushes to help her, but Ouka uses this chance to swing her sword and slice Hanyuu on the cheek. Hanyuu is taken aback and asks what she’s doing, but Ouka mentions Hanyuu's weak point and closes the distance between them. Hanyuu readies her claws to block the swing, but Ouka slices them off. Hanyuu is shocked, and Ouka says the same kind of blood is a double-edged sword and prevents her body from hardening. Hanyuu sees what Ouka is doing, and her daughter replies that the same thing goes for her barrier. Hanyuu is slashed on the shoulder.

Hanyuu desperately asks why Ouka is attacking her, as she loved her and listened to her every wish. Ouka prepares a final strike and says that humans cannot live with demons. She had a dream where she had fun with Hanyuu and her family, and she was sure her own daughter would love her too. Hanyuu asks why Ouka is protecting the same people who used her and took advantage of her, expressing that they deserved to die and are lowlife creatures. Ouka agrees, but she sheds tears as she asks her mother if she too is a lowlife. Hanyuu is shocked that Ouka knew the circumstances of her birth from the start and tries to stay otherwise, but Ouka says it was all her fault: she made an unreasonable request of her mother and depended on her. Hanyuu doesn’t want to accept that meeting Riku and giving birth to Ouka was linked to this tragedy. Ouka says she should be judged and that sacrificing one’s life is the fate of those born to the Furude family. Hanyuu wonders why everything had to be this way, as Ouka had the right to live a happy life. Ouka engages the monster before her.

Chapter 14: For Whom I Die For[]

Hyougo and Azuma were helping villagers to escape the burning area, with Hyougo informing Mao the bridge to the next village had collapsed. Hyougo worries about what to do but Mao says to get ahold of himself. However, dep down Mao was also panicking. The village was almost destroyed by a demon attack 25 years ago, when Mao was still just a little girl. Mao had always said she would kill the demon herself, but now it was taking her all to gather the surviving villagers and evacuate them. Mao tells her subordinates to look for any byroads in the mountains. Mao tries to keep the villagers under control as she tells everyone to wait for another path. Everyone is afraid of the demon catching up to them however. Mao yells they’re people of Onigafuchi, who have already survived a demon attack, and that they need to believe in their own destiny. Mao thinks that she wants to run away as much as they do and looks at her son clinging to her kimono. Mao couldn’t bring herself to sacrifice others and have to explain it to her son later and question his morality.

Shino appears and asks if Ouka’s come this way. Mao thought she’d be with Shino’s group. Shino says she couldn’t find Shouji or Fuuka either, and Mao realizes how careless she was. A young villager explains that Ouka is still at the Furude Shrine and that some villagers went on a rampage looking for the demon medicine and tried to harm Ouka’s family. The group believes the current carnage was Oyashiro-sama's curse and that Ouka, the representative of the villagers, must have taken the brunt of the curse. Shino runs back through the crowd worried about Ouka, and Mao stops her. Shino wearily asks if she’s trying to abandon Ouka, and Mao is stopped in her tracks. She couldn’t abandon Ouka when she had accepted her and consoled her after her husband’s death. Mao bites back tears and tells the mayor it’s too late to go back for her. As the heads of the Three Families, it’s their job to protect the villagers. Shino says it doesn’t matter and is more concerned with looking after Ouka, her own family. Shino promised to Riku and Hanyuu she would make Ouka happy until the end, and she wasn’t going to break that promise now. Shino tries to get away and Mao reluctantly knocks her unconscious, leaving her subordinates to carry her. Mao knows Shino will have her head for this, but she is important to Onigafuchi’s future. Mao resolves to become coldhearted if it means protecting the village. That will be her atonement.

Ouka parries Hanyuu's full-powered claw strike and is knocked over. Ouka coughs up blood and figures she broke some ribs and damaged her lungs. Ouka is amazed at the demon’s strength, as she never hit her once. She intended to call it a monster so she could say farewell, but there was no better word to describe its strength. The demon roars again as Ouka fights it. Ouka gets stabbed in the shoulder and begins losing strength. Hanyuu says she won’t kill Ouka yet and slowly approaches, saying she is no longer her friend or daughter but her enemy. Hanyuu goes on about the horrible things she will do to Ouka as revenge for calling her a monster and laughs. Spurred on by her cruelty, Ouka gains more strength and attacks again, but Hanyuu bats her away. Ouka is still no match for her and starts to lose consciousness.

Hyougo tells Mao they found a path out of the village. Mao gives orders as Shino laments Ouka.

Ouka could see the villagers fighting to survive and knew she was doing the same. She wills herself to let go of her doubts and kindness and become a demon. Hanyuu is called back to the scene by Ouka’s roar, the girl not wanting to give up yet. Ouka defends another claw attack, knowing that if she didn’t kill Hanyuu here then she and her loved ones would die. She remembers Hanyuu’s teachings that swordsmanship required resolve to harm her opponent and that the hands were the easiest target. Ouka delivers a strike that penetrates Hanyuu’s hand, all the way to her sword hilt.

Hanyuu screams in pain and then watches in surprise as Ouka assumes a stance, the same technique Hanyuu once used. Ouka’s eyes glow scarlet, which Hanyuu thought was impossible. Ouka had imitated her stance long ago, but it was just an imitation; Hanyuu never thought Ouka could perfectly recreate it. The scarlet eyes were the sign of a Ryuun’s most dangerous technique; Ouka has demonified. Ouka says she cannot allow her mother to kill anyone else, and Hanyuu briefly thinks of Riku. Hanyuu sees that Ouka really is the splitting image of Riku and begs her to stop, wondering if it really was for the best to meet him. Hanyuu didn’t want to deny those happy days and yells at Ouka to stop looking at her like that.

Hanyuu charges and Ouka aims for her shoulder, managing hit Hanyuu's arm. Ouka assumes the Turuy Galkia stance again and bids farewell to her mother, then stabs Hanyuu in the chest. Hanyuu spits up blood and laments that she wasn’t born a human. She wonders if defying fate was her sin, but at least she could leave them to Ouka.

Ouka returns to Furude Shrine and overlooks the burning village. Ouka cries, as it was her fault that Onigafuchi became devastated. She’s lost her husband, her daughter, and now her mother. Ouka prepares to kill herself with her sword and wonders if she could avoid everything by going back in time, however Hanyuu arrives and says her death won’t accomplish anything. Ouka is dejected since the demon she’d used all of her strength to defeat was still standing. Hanyuu apologizes, her eyes no longer scarlet, and says that no apology can make up for the suffering she’s caused Ouka. Ouka cries again, as her mother has come back to her yet she doesn’t have the right to hug her. Hanyuu coughs up blood, saying that she must die. She’s temporarily regained her sense of reason, but her body is regenerating and she could feel her sense of self breaking apart again. It was only a matter of time before Hanyuu would turn into a demon again and become too powerful for Ouka to defeat. Hanyuu couldn’t die unless Ouka could throw her into oblivion.

Hanyuu makes a final request and gives Ouka Ryuuou, her most trusted sword and companion. She asks Ouka to use Ryuuou to kill her, as Ryuun weapons are the only thing that will work. Ouka rejects it, not wanting to kill her mother with her own hands now that she’s returned. Hanyuu says it is a child’s duty to bury and revere her parents, just like Ouka said, so Ouka must do it. Hanyuu is grateful that Ouka didn’t have the same horns that brought Hanyuu misery. She professes that she must take the blame as the demon that destroyed Onigafuchi so that the village can be restored; Hanyuu will absorb everyone's sins, be purifed, and thrown into the swamp.

Ouka tearfully asks why Hanyuu must become the scapegoat, having accepted that the tragedy was all her fault. Hanyuu sees that Ouka is truly a kind girl, which is why she needed to lead the people and use a demon as her cornerstone. Ouka professes that Hanyuu is a human to her even with her horns, and that she is not a monster. Hanyuu thanks her and tells her to live, not just for herself but for her daughter and for everyone she holds dear. Ouka still rejects Ryuuou and Hanyuu says she will demonify soon, and Ouka will lose her last chance to kill her. She wants to spend her last moments as her mother. Meeting Riku and becoming Ouka’s mother were the happiest things that ever happened to her, and Ouka says the same. She begrudgingly takes Ryuuou and expresses her gratitude at being Hanyuu’s daughter.

Hanyuu thinks she’ll finally be able to reunite with Riku. She tells Ouka to stab her and then repeat the incantation. Ouka invokes Ryuuou’s three-pronged form. Hanyuu leaves a parting request that Ouka not turn out like her and will put an end to the world that allows these sorts of conclusions.

Shino narrates that this was a fairytale from long ago, about the smallest difference and the bonds of family who lived and prayed earnestly for others.

Ouka opens her eyes the next morning, seeing a bright blue sky. Ouka sees Ryuuou embedded into the ground, stained with her mother’s blood and still in its three-pronged form. She figures its current state is a message from Hanyuu not to ever use it again. Ouka then sees Shouji and Fuuka emerge nearby and embraces them. Shouji says the villagers left him for dead when he stopped moving after his lung started bleeding. Fuuka meanwhile was knocked unconscious and woke up in the Furude house living room, which survived the fire. Mao and Shino arrive and join the reunion. Ouka resolves to protect this happiness and create a world where sins aren’t wiped away by sacrifice. Ouka dreams that Hanyuu will be reincarnated into this world and can visit the village with a smile. That is her duty as inheritor of her mother’s blood. Ouka looks up into the sky, hoping her mother can see her.

Endroll[]

...After this tragedy, Ouka Furude was revered in Onigafuchi Village as the savior who slayed the rampaging demon that attacked the village, killing many.

It is said that the feudal lord, fearing the fury of the demon's wrath would fall upon him, made no further excess demands of the village.

Furthermore, he entrusted the right to rule the village to the Sonozaki and Kimiyoshi families, and took up a stance of nonintervention, where the village functioned as an autonomous settlement.

As a result, the Three Families gained even more influence in the village, and due to the divine wrath they'd experienced firsthand, the villagers were all firmly bonded by their faith in Oyashiro-sama.

...And, to ensure demons would never rise again, Ouka Furude offered up the precious sword that had felled the demon to Onigafuchi Swamp.

The branching blade, bared and hardened with demon blood, came to later be known as the "Onigari-no-ryuuou".

Every year afterwards, a festival was started under the initiative of the Three Families, named "Watanagashi", where offerings were drifted down the river to purify the slain demon's grudge.

Later, these offerings would be changed into something harmless and amicable - futon cotton. (However, no records remain regarding who proposed that change)

...Although, these are all merely conjecture postulated based on several ancient documents. Furthermore, the most prominent documents were lost to fire, and are debated amongst experts due to their heavy reliance on hearsay.

Thus, the true history remains a mystery to this day, and requires future archaeological research...

(Translation by 07th Mod)

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