[Burichan] [Futaba] [Nice] [Pony]  -  [WT]  [Home] [Manage]
In memory of Flyin' Black Jackson
[Catalog View] :: [Quest Archive] :: [Rules] :: [Quests] :: [Discussions] :: [Wiki]

[Return] [Entire Thread] [Last 50 posts]
Posting mode: Reply
Name (optional)
Email (optional, will be displayed)
Subject    (optional, usually best left blank)
File []
Password  (for deleting posts, automatically generated)
  • How to format text
  • Supported file types are: GIF, JPG, PNG
  • Maximum file size allowed is 10000 KB.
  • Images greater than 250x250 pixels will be thumbnailed.

File 165543970980.png - (68.48KB , 600x800 , 002title.png )
1035194 No. 1035194 ID: d98cb8

Unbalanced - Part Two

New Problems


Unbalanced is a cooperative quest, written by crows and illustrated by Milquetoaster!

From this point on it will occasionally be nsfw, including nudity and possibly sexual scenes, if you play your cards right.

Readers be warned!

Part One: https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/1026080.html
Wiki: https://questden.org/wiki/Unbalanced
Expand all images
No. 1035195 ID: d98cb8
File 165543978224.png - (16.82KB , 400x300 , p42.png )

You’ve done well, Mia.

But your path is a long one, and you have much to learn.

Wake now, child, and greet your new world.


I groggily wake from a deep sleep, remembering a single statement whispered in my ear right as I drifted to consciousness. It’s a very odd sort of thing to pop into my head, and I wonder if it’s from something.

My room’s dark, blinds pulled tight like I usually have them when I’m trying to sleep in. It wasn’t my alarm that got me up this time, which makes sense when I glance at my phone and find it laying on my nightstand but not plugged in.

I must have been stupidly tired to fall asleep last night without charging it. Did I actually drink for once? My head is pounding a little and I seem to have just left on my regular t-shirt instead of changing for bed.

I hope to god I didn’t do anything stupid. I remember vividly weird dreams. Fox woman and stuff like that.

A shower will help though. Freshly washed, clean clothes. Something more comfortable than this tight shirt.

I shed it along with my panties, and flip the light on in the bathroom, and get a look at myself in the mirror.
No. 1035196 ID: d98cb8
File 165543982062.png - (18.13KB , 400x300 , p43.png )

:miatalk: “Huh?”

Why do I look-

Oh shit. Now I remember.

It’s not the same kind of forgetting as yesterday, with Eve hiding my memories. It’s the simple thing where you wake up disoriented and hurting and weird shit like Mediators and spirits and Momo all seem entirely unreal, so it’s easier to believe for a moment it couldn’t have been real.

It’s real. It was all real.

But that’s a secondary concern to whatever the hell has happened to me. I’m not me anymore.

Okay that’s a bit dramatic. I’m still me, just... changed.

I run my hand down my face, looking at it in the mirror. The best way to describe this is sharper, I think? Like my face has gained tone or something. Actually the tone is everywhere now that I look. My arms, my stomach, hips, thighs.

I look like I’ve been working out for six months or something, and eating really well. Plus I think my boobs are bigger... and I might be taller? My head wasn’t nearly this close to the top of the mirror before.

And it’s all crystal clear, without my glasses.

:miatalk: “This is absolutely surreal.”
No. 1035197 ID: d98cb8
File 165543986676.png - (147.10KB , 1667x1250 , p44.png )

:momotalk: “I think it’s a good look on you~”

I startle, the voice coming from the room behind me. I’d left the bathroom door open when I walked in. Whirling around I look toward the voice I already recognize.

Lounging on my bed, looking delightedly at me, is Momo.

She seems utterly relaxed in my apartment, which makes it even weirder to me. Somehow I had trouble reconciling Momo’s existence from the night before with her in my room. My room is normal life, Momo is not.

After a moment of stupidly trying to process everything, I just ask her,

:miatalk: “What are you doing in my apartment?”

She rolls over on my sheets playfully pouting.

:momotalk: “Why would I be anywhere else, Mia? Don’t you like me still? After all the help I gave you?”

Not that I didn’t appreciate the help but, it wasn’t really the question I’d meant, and I have a feeling that if I let Momo steer this conversation I’m not getting anywhere.

:miatalk: “I meant, why here? You could be anywhere, I swore to let you stay in the world. I’m not gonna come chase you down. I’m just-”

I’m so confused. My brain is trying to transition from sleep into a brand new world for me.

Her giggle echoes around the small room as she answers.

:momotalk: “Well, even if I wanted to go somewhere else, at the very least it would have been rude to leave before you woke up. We did have to haul you back after you collapsed last night, Mia~”

Oh shit.

I did, didn’t I. I collapsed right as someone was coming to-

:miatalk: “Wait what, you said we? We who?”

:momotalk: “The other Mediator, of course! It’s quite silly of you to take this long to remember to ask things like this.”

I hold up my hand in a halting gesture.

:miatalk: “I had the worst day of my life yesterday, so I feel like it’s a little excusable that I’m trying to catch up with what’s going on. So one question at a time, okay?”

Momo leers at me, head up on her hands as she lays on her stomach across my bed.

:momotalk: “Ask whatever you wish to know. It’s a delightful view from here as I answer.”

This is when it occurs to me that this entire exchange I’ve had with the fox woman has been while I was standing butt naked in the bathroom doorway.

My face lights up and I duck back around the corner, hiding myself. But I still need answers.

:miatalk: “I’m gonna take a shower now. But I’m gonna need you to answer questions so get your ass in here so I can hear you, Momo.”


Now what should I ask while I’m getting cleaned up? I’ve got time to ask some detailed questions without anybody trying to assault me this time.

Maybe I should start with the other mediator?
No. 1035198 ID: 10f71c

Ask about the other mediator
Ask if this change in your body is permanent and if you can switch back somehow, cause, you kinda need clothes that can fit right now and you cant go out naked for new clothes... unless we're using mask ability go do some naked shopping... what? No! You didnt just think of something as perverted as that, did you?
No. 1035199 ID: 8483cf

Definitely start with the other mediator.

Also, when is Momo going to start paying rent?
No. 1035200 ID: 273c18

Shit she looks good in your bed though, covered with nothing but your sheets.

Ask who the other Mediator is. Are you going to be working together?
Then, ask how Momo's going to get around unnoticed. Does she need a disguise?
Assuming that's handled, does she want you to show her around town? It could be like a date.
No. 1035201 ID: e5709d

... Enhance knockers?

Ask if Momo's sight is generally similar to humans (maybe some light curvature around the edges, golden tint), or if her perception of reality is considered mind-blowing to those who read hers.

Then ask what happens if you leave an imbalanced Yang spirit on a contract without a Yin spirit on a bond.
No. 1035203 ID: 8483cf

More questions:

Why hasn't the human government stepped in and found out about spirits? Seems like a security threat.

Why me? Why pick me specifically?

Are you immortal? If I take off those bells, will you die? (But seriosuly, if you get hit by a car do you die?)

What's to stop me from learning every single yin and yang power, and picking and choosing among them as I please?

What famous celebrities are mediators? Is Chuck Norris a mediator?

Where did my conditioner go?
No. 1035204 ID: 815672

How long is she staying? Just for breakfast? Er, probably lunch now. Was the other mediator cute? Do they know where you live?
No. 1035225 ID: 0c3f05

Why do you have to be so sexy!? Are you trying to give me a heart attack?
No. 1035237 ID: 7a2420

Booooo. ...Guess it's up to you, though.

I guess start with the basic rundown. What's your job, what's it involve, how do people normally make it work, what's first on the docket. You'll want to talk with the other mediator at some point, but they're not here right now.
No. 1035245 ID: 899c9f

From this angle, I'm starting to wonder: are your real eyes in the bells? You some kind of bug fox?
No. 1035251 ID: 273c18

Ask if she's naked right now.
No. 1035254 ID: f2320a

amazed the tits dont flop sideways onto the arm i guess she is cheating with magic
No. 1035265 ID: d98cb8
File 165551468559.png - (23.41KB , 960x750 , showertalk.png )

I quickly hop into the shower and pull the curtain closed, my face still faintly red from blushing. It’s been a few years since the last time anyone saw me in the nude, and my boyfriend of the time never got that many opportunities. Even being a spirit, it’s still weird for Momo to get a look.

Okay even moreso because she keeps flirting at me.

As I crank on the water, standing back out of the stream while it gets hot, the curtain shuffles.

:momotalk: “A nice hot shower sounds-”

I slam my hand against the wall, pinning the edge of the curtain in place.

:miatalk: “Nope, no. You’re sitting out there. I shower alone. No wet foxes in here.”

:momotalk: “Aww, you tease. Fine~”

The curtain is patterned plastic, so I know Momo can’t see me through it, though the lights in the bathroom let me get a vague silhouette of her sitting down on the sink of all places.

:momotalk: “You had questions, Mia?”

The water is delightfully hot on my sore muscles as I think of what to ask. One thing obviously comes first.

:miatalk: “The person who showed up last night, as I was passing out, that was another mediator? Who was it?”

:momotalk: “Who? I couldn’t tell you, only that he was a pleasant young man and a mediator. Your kind are apparent at a glance to any spirit. He was far more concerned with making sure you were safe and then getting you home to rest. Didn’t mention his name.”

:miatalk: “Getting me home to rest?”

:momotalk: “Mm yes. Skilled boy, could tell immediately that you only needed rest. You were quite impressive last night Mia, an absolute delight to watch. Running right past your own limits without fear.”

I blush a little. Compliments aren’t something I get a lot. Thankfully Momo can’t see it.

:miatalk: “Uh, thanks. How did you know where my apartment was? And why did you stay? Did he make you?”

:momotalk: “Oh I had no idea where your delightful little home is. The young man loaded you up in his car and I tagged along, he knew exactly where to bring you.”

The idea of some random man carrying me around was weird, but if he was a mediator I guess he was at least vetted by Eve? I didn’t feel groped so I-

:miatalk: “Wait I didn’t have most of me clothes on when I woke up. Was that uh-?”

:momotalk: “You looked so uncomfortable laying in your clothes after he so politely laid you on your bed and left. I helped!”

Slightly reassuring. I think.

:miatalk: “Okay but that doesn’t answer why you stuck around?”

There’s a long silence as I shampoo my hair, and I wonder if Momo is stalling. Then she responds, some of the playfulness falling from her voice.

:momotalk: “You and I formed a pact, Mia. I was not able to explain it fully last night, but the full truth is important. The cost for my power was to allow me to stay, but it was not a payment. It was the means by which the power flowed.”

:miatalk: “Slightly lost me.”

:momotalk: “When we formed the pact, I cut myself off from my home in the yang world, from the City of the Passions. I tethered myself to your soul, that my power could flow into you. You keep me here in this world.”

She fell silent, and the sound of the running shower filled the air as I thought on this. It was a really weird thing to consider.

:miatalk: “That uh, seems like a big sacrifice. Thank you?”

:momotalk: “Oh not at all! Now I get to stay here in the mortal world and see everything~ I really was hoping to find some way to hang around and be rid of that place!”

The cheer is back in her voice, as quickly as that.

:miatalk: “Okay, well I’m glad it worked out for you then. It seems to have messed with me a bit here though, is this permanent? Can I uh, loose a couple inches here?”

I’m definitely a few inches closer to the showerhead than I had been before. It was weird. Pretty sure my clothing will still fit, if a little tighter.

:miatalk: “Wait didn’t you tell me last night that if you died you return home? What happens now”

:momotalk: “I don’t know! It’s quite exciting, isn’t it? But as to your body, I don’t think so. Yang is the energy of growth, and it looks like you definitely grew~”

:miatalk: “I can practically hear you thinking about my breasts.”

Momo cackles, and I thank god (thank Eve?) that I’m in an upstairs apartment with no neighbors on one side and a deaf old lady on the other. She’s loud.

:momotalk: “Oh there’s so much more of you to think about, Mia. All very very nice~”

I’m not interesting in girls. I know I’m not interested in girls. Definitely not interested in foxes. So why the hell does having Momo compliment my body make me light up?

:miatalk: “I’ve known you for under an hour at this point and I’m fairly sure you’re going to mess with me constantly, aren’t you? I guess we’re kinda stuck together though. Is that going to be an issue for me, like with the mediator thing?”

A second thought occurs.

:miatalk: “Do I need to like, make a pact with a yin spirit now? Balance seemed to be a big thing with Eve.”

:momotalk: “Mess with you? I wouldn’t! I’m always perfectly sincere in my interests, little Mia. But as far as issues...”

I wait for her to continue as I notice that my conditioner doesn’t seem to be in the shower.

:momotalk: “Most pacts are made between spirits, and forms a balance between them. Their natures change in response to this new balance, and all is well. You aren’t a spirit, not completely, so you might want to ask another mediator what to do about it.”

:momotalk: “A pact with a yin spirit would have been a perfectly suitable solution for me, so you may guess how difficult it is to find one willing if I took the first mediator who wandered across my path.”

I poke my head out around the edge of the curtain, looking at her and around the small bathroom. Momo is fully dressed in her kimono, and I wonder if she had been naked up until I told her to let me shower alone. I mentally slap myself for thinking about that.

:miatalk: “You mean you just picked me at random? Because I happened to be there?”

She grins and shrugs in response.

:miatalk: “Huh. Also where’s my conditioner? I had a whole bottle?”

:momotalk: “It tasted absolutely nothing like apples, unfortunately. You should probably get something better.”

I stare at her.

:miatalk: “You drank my conditioner.”

:momotalk: “You were asleep and I was bored.”

:miatalk: “You’re absolutely bizarre. What’s with your eyes, anyway? Or is that just a mouth? How the hell do you see?”

She opens her eyes and exposes a white iris in a pitch black eye, before closing them again.

:momotalk: “I don’t understand, my eyes are right here, you can see them just fine, and I can see you just fine.”

And then she fucking opens her mouth in the widest toothiest grin, her bright white teeth extending all the way back to where her ‘eye’ had been.

:momotalk: “Here’s my mouth, nice and simple. It’s a very odd question, Mia. Maybe you need more rest.”

I pull my head back into the shower, and sit down in it.

I worry about my head, that I both feel weirdly attracted to the fox woman one moment and then absolutely unsettled by her the next.


Gonna have to kick her out of the bathroom so I can get out and dry off soon, but she seems weirdly open about answering literally anything I ask her. Seems like a good time to get a few other questions in if I can think of anything.

(Guest art shitposted by the fantastic Poltergeist Ethanic Acid!)
No. 1035272 ID: 629f2e

How tall is she? And what are her measurements? You can use this to secretly order her cosplay that would look awesome on her.
No. 1035274 ID: 273c18

What does she want to see first?
No. 1035275 ID: 899c9f

Heck, you should ask her for your new measurements.
Also if she isn't going to budge from the bathroom you're going to use her tail as a towel.
No. 1035276 ID: dee951

See, the intimidation is part of the attraction. The danger, how she's pinging your 'bad girl' sense. After a certain point, it's all about intensity of emotions!
No. 1035278 ID: bf7d5b

ask if Momo can track Mr. Mysterious Mediator by scent or aura trail or whatever
No. 1035279 ID: dee951

So... normal, mundane foxes are known for stinking, uh, a lot, even if they are washed regularly. Why doesn't she have a strong scent? In fact, she smells strangely... pleasant...
No. 1035280 ID: e5709d

Are you going to keep growing, and if so, then how can you redirect it into your boobs or non-height stats?
No. 1035302 ID: 815672

Ask her a little about yourself. And to pass you the emergency backup conditioner under the sink. Small travel sized bottle you nicked from a hotel years ago.
No. 1035310 ID: ce39da

"Well, given that I've just undergone a dramatic transformation, including height, do you have any tips on how to get people to recognize that I'm not someone else doing a bad job of pretending to be Mia?"
No. 1035903 ID: d98cb8
File 165613606539.png - (73.53KB , 800x600 , p45.png )

Thinking on Momo, I remember her weird comment the night before about her affecting people. That combined with her... aggressively flirty manner is just getting to me here.

Honestly it’s not as if I get flirted with at all normally. It’s just the novel newness of this whole thing messing with my head too.

I stand back up and note to myself that my boobs are a bit bigger so if I’m not careful I might get some flirting that way. It’s not really something I want to deal with.

Can’t I just be left alone?

But at least I don’t look THAT different. People might just assume I was slouching a lot before, and wearing baggy clothes. Which I was but they weren’t actually hiding this.

:miatalk: “Can you look under the sink and see if I have a tiny bottle of conditioner down there? And then not drink it please? My hair is hard enough to keep tamed even with proper care.”

:momotalk: “Ooh, more to see down here. Completely missed this before.”

I stick my arm out around the edge and hold my hand open, feeling the bottle drop into my palm. I respond as I go to finish up with what little the travel bottle contains. It’s from my last hotel stay with my mom, and I’m glad I kept it just in case.

:miatalk: “Did you just spend the entire time I was asleep wandering around digging through my stuff?”

:momotalk: “Absolutely! Why wouldn’t I want to know eeeeeeeevrything about my Mia?”

:miatalk: “Your- Okay sure. I guess I’m kinda stuck with you for now, right? Was there anything you actually wanted to just, you know, ask me? Instead of digging around in my stuff?”

I finish rinsing my hair, which even I can tell in the dim shower is way brighter than before. Also it continues to be weird that I can see it so well. No glasses is a weird feeling.

:momotalk: “Well all this in your home, but I can’t find what you do for fun? What does Mia do when alone, hmm?”

Well that wasn’t entirely expected. What I do for fun?

:miatalk: “I guess uh, I read? And watch TV. Can’t really call homework fun but it’s satisfying to get it done?”

Saying it out loud, I feel a little weird. I didn’t really think about it before, since it was just habits. School, work, home. Fill time in between with idle enjoyment.

I’m kinda boring, aren’t I?

After I turn off the water I comment as I slip my towel off the hook and behind the curtain to dry myself in private.

:miatalk: “I guess I don’t do a lot. Sorry.”

Why am I apologizing for being myself? I’m not sure, but I feel like I must be a disappointing person to be around.

Momo, however, doesn’t seem remotely put out by this based on her tone as she answers.

:momotalk: “Mmm, quiet days spent in comfort are just as delicious as a party, Mia~ Not every moment must be loud, that would be too consistent.”

Wrapped in my towel, I pull aside the curtain to look at the strange, strange fox woman sitting in my bathroom. From what little I knew of her, I’d assumed she was all about the loud parties. Always wild and chaotic, all energy and movement all the time. A yang spirit, right?

She smiles at me, and it feels like she just read my damn mind.

I sigh.

:miatalk: “Out of the bathroom while I finish drying off, or I’ll use your tails to dry my hair.”

She grins and lifts the tip of one tail toward me, of course. I just shake my head toward the door, and Momo whisks out of the small room. The door falls most of the way shut behind her.

Toweling off, a thought strikes me and I call out again.

:miatalk: “I’m not going to keep growing, am I? My boobs are big enough already.”

Momo’s voice is slightly muffled by the mostly closed door.

:momotalk: “No, unfortunately~”

Could have seen that comment coming. Dirty fox. But I’ve got more important questions.

:miatalk: “Anyway, can you like, track the mediator who brought me here or something? I really need to learn more.”

:momotalk: “Nope, can’t do that!”

:miatalk: “Okay then, well-”

:momotalk: “But he left a note on your door!”

I stop, hands holding my towel up to dry my hair. My eyes close in slight exasperation.

:miatalk: “You didn’t mention this at all.”

:momotalk: “You said you needed your shower first! And I was letting you ask questions. You seemed so happy to be in charge. Very authoritative.”

I bury my face in my towel and think rude things about Momo for a moment.

:miatalk: “What does the note say?”

:momotalk:Meyer Auto Salvage, back lot, 4pm. We need to talk. And a neat little wobbly doodle on the end! He drew you a picture! Oh and that’s four hours away.”

I wrap my towel back around myself and quickly tear my brush through my hair. Despite being conditioned it doesn’t seem to want to lay flat properly.

:miatalk: “Okay it sounds like I have a place to be then. What’ll we do with you? Can you stay here without me?”

:momotalk: “Aww, I can’t come along?”

I respond as I push my bathroom door open, turning to reach for my dresser as I keep what modesty I have remaining hidden with my towel.

:miatalk: “Not unless you can turn into a human, you can’t.”
No. 1035904 ID: d98cb8
File 165613616435.gif - (24.23KB , 800x600 , p46.gif )

:momotalk: “What about this?”

I freeze up again. Bad that this is becoming a habit, but it’s also a very surreal morning.

Momo is a fox.

Like she was a fox woman before but now she’s just a fox. A really weird looking little one with apparently still no goddamn eyes and a massive bell, but a fox indeed.

:miatalk: “What the fuck?”

I’m not normally one for profanity but this is just one step further than I expected. Just a few minutes ago this fox was a woman who was hitting on me. How do you even process that?

Momo shimmies in place and smiles broadly, responding in the same voice as before, no change despite her tiny form.

:momotalk: “I am VERY proud of how I look. I’m very cute, and should admire me for my skills in this. Praise me please.”

Does she know fully what she’s doing? Does Momo understand how she’s managing to confuse me, and then untangle that confusion immediately after by simply being her own weird self? Or is it just naturally how she acts?

I really hope all yang spirits aren’t this weird.

:miatalk: “It’s very... adorable. But you’re barely less noticeable like this. Having a weird fox following me around is still odd.”

Momo lifts her front paw and places it on my bag, sitting right next to her. I wonder if she moved it there before or after she turned into a fox.

:momotalk: “Obviously~ You can instead carry me in my palanquin here. It shall be very sneaky.”

I giggle. I can’t help it. This whole thing is just so weird and now I guess I’m gonna carry Momo around in my bag.

Why not?

It’s been a weird morning, and I’ve still gotta get dressed and make sure at least some of my clothes still fit, and I’ve got an appointment with a mediator this afternoon.

But for now, I think I might just laugh and enjoy the moment.

:miatalk: “You know what? Sure. Let’s do it.”

:momotalk: “Mia makes the best choice. Almost a yin spirit in wisdom.”

:miatalk: “But right now turn around and stare at the wall or something. I’m getting dressed and you’ve probably had more than enough of a look up my towel already from that angle.”

Momo cackles in amusement, but turns around anyway.


Seems like I’ve got a few hours to go before the meetup, but I definitely need to get out of my apartment and get some air.

I’ve got a few options here.

A) Go back to the park Honestly, kinda wondering what happened to the theatre space after I was hauled off. I could wander out there and see if anybody has noticed. This might give me more time to talk to Momo, or even play a little with my powers. B) Drop in at work on the way I don’t have time to work a shift obviously, but I could stop by and talk to my manager about maybe adjusting my hours a bit. Reggie is a nice guy, he’s willing to work with me, and it might be a little goodwill about future missing shifts if I at least took a couple hours right now and sorted out returns and did some shelving. But I can’t imagine Momo not getting up to something while my back is turned. C) Head to the meeting place early I could just go straight there, try and arrive ahead of my mysterious savior. I don’t know what he wants to talk about but it couldn’t help to be early. Unless he takes offense to me blowing off the time picked.
No. 1035906 ID: e51896

I want to do B, but how are we supposed to explain our new look to everyone? will they even know it's us?

Lets do A instead for now. testing our powers sounds fun.
No. 1035907 ID: 899c9f

A fox is fine too. Go to the park.
No. 1035908 ID: 8483cf

B. Let's visit work and set some things right. We've got responsibilities. Minimum wage responsibilities, but responsibilities nonetheless.

Play fetch with Momo!
No. 1035911 ID: 273c18

B. Returning to the scene of the crime is not a good idea, and arriving early is just boring.
No. 1035912 ID: d98cb8

I hope you don't truly believe that I'd put an option in that would actually just be 'Oh I'm early, better sit and wait nice and boringly.'
No. 1035913 ID: 629f2e

A or B are both good. I'm leaning B, just so we get to see Reggie.
No. 1035914 ID: 0840c2

No. 1035918 ID: 815672

B. Consider it settling the book before it becomes an issue. There's been a change for you that would require reduced hours. You'd be glad to help when possible but that's just how things are for you right now.
No. 1035919 ID: e51896

Since the vote is going for mostly B, let's get a hoodie on to conceal our hair, and wear our glasses (even if we don't need them) so that people don't question our appearance
No. 1035920 ID: 95cb1e

Why? We dont need to hide anything about us. And glasses will just make things too blurry. Just wear what we usually wear without glasses.
No. 1035921 ID: e51896

I was thinking we can try to get our old look back somehow, and use the new look as a secret alter ego, kind of like a super hero. that way we can keep Mia's personal life and mediator life separate and not risk any potential enemies knowing who Mia is and try to get at her when she is at work, school, or home.

Unless Reggie is really good at keeping secrets for us.
No. 1035927 ID: dee951


Also pet the fox! PET THE FOX. Ask her if she can do that fox giggle. You saw a video once of a fox 'gekkering', and it was totally using it like a human giggle! This is your life now.
No. 1035996 ID: f3f534

No. 1036000 ID: e3d898


And tell Reggie about our new mediator responsibilities and introduce him to Momo. It might be best for him to know in case we need to save the city during the middle of our work shift. No need to keep secrets
No. 1036855 ID: d98cb8
File 165681278101.png - (107.65KB , 800x600 , p47.png )

As much as my life is changing, I figure I still need to face my regular responsibilities. It’s not like school and work just stopped as soon as I got magic powers.

So I get dressed, facing the fact that that outfits all fit but are a lot less loose and shapeless on me now. It’s not bad but I don’t usually go for that sort of style. Unfortunately I don’t exactly have the spare cash to replace everything so shorter skirts it is.

I do wonder about if people will still recognize me but I’m not THAT different, so I figure I’ll just tell people I had a makeover or something.

Momo fits neatly in my bag once I empty out everything, and I try to ignore her tail hanging out the back. I’ve seen weirder styles around campus.


I think on the whole situation while I walk the nine blocks to Johnny’s Video. I guess my life wasn’t so full before that I can’t fit mediator duties around between work and school. Honestly outside of those I mostly just read or watched stuff on TV.

:miatalk: “You know anything about what Mediators do, Momo? I don’t actually have much of a clue into what I’m supposed to handle, day to day.”

Momo’s voice is slightly muffled by the bag until she peeks the tip of her weird snout out of the end.

:momotalk: “Nope! Most I’ve met were waiting for me when I come here. Shaking their heads and saying ‘You’re not allowed to be here!’ and all that. So I guess you do that!”

:miatalk: “That’s about all I knew about it too, but I can’t imagine it’s as simple as that. And try to make it less obvious that I’m talking to my bag please.”

She cackles, face hidden once more.

:momotalk: “Yes, it’s very difficult. You’re practiced at shaking your head already, but I don’t think I’ve seen you wave your finger yet. And so bad at banishing me!”

I hold back from shaking my head at her because it feels like I’d be playing right into her joke right there, but something else occurs to me.

:miatalk: “This is all supposed to be secret, right? Like regular people don’t know about it and have to be kept in the dark? At least until now I’d never heard of mediators or spirit worlds so it can’t be common knowledge.”

:momotalk: “A good question~ I don’t know about humans, but for spirits we keep it quiet because it’s easier. Much harder to pass unnoticed if everyone knows you exist!”

:miatalk: “And that’s important to you, being unnoticed?”

Her tail twitches, which translates to a weird jerk of the bag and having the tip of it smack me in the butt. I don’t think it was intentional.

:momotalk: “Mmm yes, very. We don’t want to invade, or rule, or control your world. There are goals, but more often than not they involve change in a more pleasant way~”

:miatalk: “Huh.”

I’d pursue exactly what she means by change, but I’m coming up on the store so I decide to shelve that for now.

:miatalk: “Okay we’re headed into my job now, okay? So no talking where anyone else can hear you, under any circumstances. I’m gonna see if I can pick up a little work before we go to that meeting, and sort out future work stuff.”

:momotalk: “Yes ma’am!”

I roll my eyes and step inside.
No. 1036857 ID: d98cb8
File 165681295886.png - (404.69KB , 2500x3333 , p48.png )

:reggie: “Oh, hey Mia!”

Inside, leading against the counter and looking at the rental shelves behind him, is my manager.

Reggie is... Well he’s Reggie.

I’m pretty sure he’s in his late 20s? Also pretty sure he’s a guy based on the name and his somewhat boyish voice and having never corrected me on referring to him that way.

But he was my height BEFORE I gained four inches last night, and he’s more girly than I’ve ever been. Maybe he’s gay? It feels weird to consider asking, even though I’m pretty sure he’d just tell me.

:reggie: “Didn’t have you on the schedule for today. You wanna work?”

:miatalk: “Well I’ve got a meeting in a few hours but I thought maybe you could use the help with Sarah quitting. Sorry I couldn’t make it yesterday.”

He just grins and laughs.

:reggie: “Dude it’s cool. Ran the store myself, just slept behind the counter when it was empty.”

:miatalk: “You slept? What if someone came in?”

:reggie: “Door goes ding. All good.”

:miatalk: “I uh- okay I guess.”

Reggie hoists a box up onto the counter.

:reggie: “Figured I’d see if you wanted the shifts since you always seem up for it, and I was super hung over. But if you wanna pick up some time right now, wanna check DVDs while I put up this display?”

I nod and come around the edge to take a seat behind the tall counter, to check in returned DVDs and make sure they were in their cases and not damaged. Momo in her bag is placed prominently nearby where I hope she can at least peek out and see the store.

:reggie: “Yeah gotta put up like, a whole display of this weird vampire movie. Dunno why, it looks absolutely terrible.”

He looks down into the box he’s holding in his arms, before winking at me as he walks away to the New Releases wall on the other side of the store.

:reggie: “Nice look, by the way! Rocking that hair, girl.”

Huh. Well I didn’t expect Reggie to make a fuss about it, he’s really laid back. But it was nice to see it barely fazed him. Had been kinda worried people wouldn’t recognize me without my glasses.

I find a pen and grab a clipboard to tally up the returns before putting them in the system, but Momo speaks up.

:momotalk: “He can’t hear me now~ Freed from my prison of silence. What are you doing, Mia?”

:miatalk: “Counting stuff. DVDs. Actually do you even know what those are?”

She peeks out and grins, and I see the bell at her neck poke up from the edge of the bag. I consider that it conveniently never seems to ring. Maybe it's busted.

:momotalk: “Of course I do. Delicious little discs full of emotion and passion. for entertainment. You sell them here?”

:miatalk: “Rent them. People pay to borrow them for a time.”

I turn to check the stack I’ve got, weirdly finding it a lot harder to focus with Momo there to talk to. I’m usually pretty good at ignoring people while I work. My pen seems to have rolled off somewhere and I glance around trying to find it.

:miatalk: “Delicious? You didn’t eat some of my DVDs while I was asleep too, did you?”

She giggles from in the bag but doesn’t respond, so I sigh and grab another pen as I return to work.

At some point I need to talk to Reggie about maybe having a more flexible schedule, more covering empty spots than being actually committed to the hours. It would make the mediator stuff easier, and Reggie would probably say yes. I just need to figure out how to explain it to him.

Right as I’m about to comment on trying to figure out a good lie to Momo, Reggie comes walking back to the counter with his clipboard in hand where he’d been jotting notes on the planogram.

:reggie: “Dropped my pen somewhere!”

He laughs and grabs another one from the cup, and heads back across the store. When he’s out of earshot I comment toward Momo.

:miatalk: “It would be a lot easier if I could just talk to you openly. I’ve never really had to keep secrets before, not like this.”

This time Momo pokes her entire head out of the bag, and I raise an eyebrow at the pen in her mouth, but she speaks clearly despite it.

:momotalk: “Why keep secrets then? Secrets are so boring. Cold and quiet and hidden, ew. You could just tell him! Imagine how fun that could be, to see his reaction to me~?”

I- I hadn’t considered just breaking the secret to anybody.

Am I allowed to just do that? Tell people about the secret magic world?

If anyone would take it easily and effortlessly, it would be Reggie I think. I take his job more seriously than he does most of the time. And it would make my life a lot easier if I could just tell him ‘Mediator business’ when I need to duck out.

Should I?

If not, what lie should I come up with for needing him to make my schedule more flexible?
No. 1036858 ID: 899c9f

Your course load at the university has increased and you need more time for independent study. Simple.
No. 1036859 ID: 629f2e

No, do not tell Reggie.

Not because you don't trust him, but because you don't trust Momo. Do you really want them to be able to talk to each other? Give Momo more avenues to learn about you? Plot behind your back? Nope, you keep that fox in your bag and don't make a big thing of it.
No. 1036861 ID: 8483cf

Don't tell Reggie. We haven't vetted Reggie, he might be cool, but he might not be trustworthy.

Deploy fox, though. Always deploy fox out of bag
No. 1036864 ID: 04487d

This.... but that on its own is not quite enough, is it? After all, one can plan around homework and extra classes, and if he asks about them you have to make something up - and your lies may not fit the situation when you suddenly need to leave. I near agree with the clever fox. Lies just muddle things. Now... half-truths that can lead up to a big reveal later seems more on the balance!

Blurt out you got a... a new girlfriend? Yesterday. Sorta. It’s complicated. But you’re, uh, going to have to deal with some circumstances for the foreseeable future because of that, so that’s definitely likely to make you a less reliable worker.
No. 1036865 ID: 273c18

Tell him! He's cool.
No. 1036867 ID: ce39da

The goddess said Tamamo would always be on your side, but she did not say that the fox's advice was always sound. You need to be the yin to her yang just as much as she does the opposite with you.

Feed Reggie a half-truthful excuse about a new girlfriend for now (like >>1036864 suggested), at least until you can get advice from this other Medium on the matter in a few hours.
No. 1036872 ID: e5709d

Overload Reggie-ster.
Say nothing and shove Momo in his face. When he asks questions, continue to say nothing and rub her all over his face.
No. 1036877 ID: e7848c

You could just be straightfaced about it and just say magic business as to why you can't be around as much. Even if he is super laid back bosses don't really need to know what you're doing outside of work. Not that he would care, it seems.
No. 1036881 ID: 2d1b09

Try feeling the topic out first ask him about like if he beieves in the supernatural or the like and go based on his responses
No. 1036925 ID: e51896

Don't reveal anything

But accidentally let Momo free. She'll reveal herself to Reggie.
No. 1036938 ID: e02891

We should probably talk to the other mediator first, at least; make sure there isn't a Masquerade, or anything. Doesn't seem like a decision that has to be made NOW.
No. 1037056 ID: f3a2ce

What are the odds momo actually has a perfectly easy way to disguise herself or go undetected and she's just messing with you again?
No. 1037070 ID: dee951


Ya, this. Something like:

"So, if reality were like an Urban Fantasy novel, hidden fey and all, would that be totally awesome or totally horrible?"
No. 1039161 ID: d98cb8
File 165873865588.png - (707.70KB , 3333x2500 , p49.png )

I consider the options for how to talk to Reggie about needing more flexible hours. He’s busy doing his job, probably putting slightly more effort into it than before just because I’m here. He’s seemed like the type to slack off slightly less when he’s got people actually around to notice.

It’s not absolutely mandatory that I approach the topic immediately, so I settle in to work for a while.


A couple hours pass, and I’m still no closer to coming up with a good excuse. I don’t exactly want LESS hours, I just need to be able to bail on work sometimes, I think.

That would make me sound super irresponsible to say it that way, though.

Making this whole process even more difficult is Momo.

Not that she’s up to anything. Actually, she seems to have gone surprisingly quiet, with her tail just idly hanging out the back of my bag. Not a hint of her face for a while now.

It’s making me feel bad.

I doubt when she came to the mortal world she expected to get saddled with someone who sits around and binge watches cartoons, picks up extra shifts at work, and does her homework the moment it’s assigned.

Reggie is on the other end of the store, and there’s a tall counter between me and him as well. So I make a decision on impulse.

:miatalk: “Hey, Momo. Are you uh, sleeping?”

:momotalk: “Nope, just sitting!”

Momo’s nose pokes out of my bag, follows by her ears and entire head. Weirdly her tail doesn’t move at all or get pulled into the bag as she scoots up, and I imagine her just lengthening her tail rather than moving it. Or her neck, to look out of the bag without moving.

I shake my head and banish that weird image from my mind.

:miatalk: “It’s probably kinda boring in there, right? Do you want to get out for a bit?”

:momotalk: “Oooooh can I?”

Her eyes lighting up is a weird way to describe it, but that’s basically what happens.

:miatalk: “Only if you promise to try and stay out of where Reggie can see you. Oh, and act like you’re my pet if he does spot you, anyway. Reggie will believe that. Promise?”

She leaps out of my bag, and hops back and forth on her legs, grinning. I wonder if I’m making a stupid decision, but I’ve gotta trust her sometimes if I’ll be stuck with Momo in the long run. I’m sure she knows how to not be seen.

:momotalk: “Promise! Oh so much to see~”

I check my phone. About 15 minutes to let Momo stretch her tiny legs before we have to head out.

But when I look up to tell her this, I find a complete lack of fox on my desk.

Instead, I see Momo bolting at full speed down the aisle toward Reggie, whose back is turned away from us.

I panic a little. What the hell is she doing? WHY? This isn’t what I told her to do! I stand to call for her to come back and just barely stifle myself, to keep from shouting something Reggie would definitely hear.

I do sorta squeak and knock over my chair in the process.

And Reggie turns around to see what the noise was.


But as Reggie turns to the right to look, Momo veers to the left and runs down a cross aisle, completely unseen.

:reggie: “What’s up, Mia?”

He calls across the store, obviously seeing the look on my face as I stand here. Gotta cover, gotta come up with something. Anything!

:miatalk: “Ah it’s, it’s nothing. I uh, banged my shin on the desk. Sorry!”

:reggie: “Yeah I do that all the time. Those crossbars are annoying.”

Reggie turns back to the display wall, and Momo comes prancing down the next aisle along, apparently having hit the end of the prior one and looped the corner.

She looks directly at me as she passes through the main aisle, an absolute grin on her face, before disappearing down the left side behind some shelves.

The little shit. She’s screwing with me.

I can’t think of a single way to tell her to get her ass back here without Reggie noticing though. And she hasn’t been seen yet. What’s her plan here?

I lean on the counter and wonder if maybe telepathy is something I’m supposed to be able to do, through the pact or something. It’s Momo’s move right now, but I’m pretty annoyed that she immediately went to break her promise.

Of course when she resurfaces, it’s one aisle closer to Reggie, and she makes the remainder of the dash up to him in one long go. I brace for her discovery.

Then she stops right behind my manager, and just stands there next to a box of materials. Not moving. No noise.

Ten seconds pass. Then thirty. A minute. Two.

I’m standing, watching this bizarre scene as Reggie taps away on his inventory phone, clipboard in hand, and Momo stands stock still right behind him. Waiting.

:reggie: “Oh yeah!”

Reggie turns, to speak to me.

As before, when he turns to the left this time, Momo moves to the right. Staying right behind him the entire time.

:reggie: “You needed to head out at some point, right?”

:miatalk: “Ye-yeah. I’ve got time, but maybe I should pack my [b]bag[/] right now and get ready.”

I try to emphasize that, to signal Momo to get her furry ass back over here. But I can’t help but glance, just for a second, down at her, and Reggie immediately catches that subtle motion. How the HELL did he spot that from across the room?

His fluffy ponytail flips as he glances back and down, at the floor, before looking back at me.

And Momo again darts around him, hiding in my manager’s blind spot, so all he sees is his box of promo materials.

:reggie: “Don’t worry about this stuff, Mia. I got it handled. Glad I could have at least a little help today, honest.”

He turns to return to the wall, Momo dancing around behind again.

:reggie: “Feels like I can’t keep any employees these days, even though it’s easy work. Maybe it’s just too boring.”

Momo looks at me again, and grins a toothy smile.

Oh, I get it.

Yeah she’s absolutely screwing with me, but she’s not breaking her promise. She hasn’t been seen at all. I didn’t tell her to stay near the desk, so she’s choosing to not be seen right behind Reggie. I sigh.

Mental note: Momo is absolutely willing to obey the exact letter of her promises.

But why? Why this? Why screw with me? She was being cool only a few minutes ago. Why give me a tiny heart attack and make me panic? I’ve gone from calm and relaxed to freaking out, all because I said she could-

Oh. She keeps telling me and I keep missing it because I’m stupidly thinking of her as a fuzzy human.

Delicious emotions.

She’s looking to experience emotions, isn’t she? I don’t know if she actually is eating or tasting them or something, but she’s screwing with me because it was boring before and now she gets to experience my panic.

I’ve been saddled with someone who delights in getting a rise out of me, a reaction of some kind.

Which means the best way to get her to stop this is to quit freaking out and play it calm.

I sigh, take some deep breaths.

Play it cool.

:miatalk: “Actually uh, that’s something I needed to talk to you about, Reggie.”

Don’t glance at Momo, don’t pay attention to her. Have a conversation with Reggie. I can do this.

:reggie: “Aww, don’t tell me you’re quitting too?”

He turns to face me, disappointment on his features. I ignore the red and white blur circling around his feet.

:miatalk: “Oh, no that’s not what I meant! Sorry! I just need some flexible hours for a bit. I’ve got something that’s come up.”

Momo is moving his clipboard from the box Reggie’d set it in, into another box.

:reggie: “We can work something out, sure. What’s up?”

Can’t say mediator.

Probably shouldn’t talk about magic stuff.

Momo grins at me, blatantly hoping I’m going to tell him exactly what I just decided not to.

:miatalk: “I have a g-”

Momo laying on my bed, outfit carelessly almost showing everything, pops into my head for some stupid stupid reason. I almost tell him I’ve got a girlfriend, due an attack of sudden insanity, I’m sure of it. Thankfully I smother that weird idea and veer in a different direction.

:miatalk: “-a roommate. I’m dealing with a temporary roommate situation, and she’s kinda a pain. Would be helpful if you’d be okay with me missing work occasionally to deal with this.”

Reggie nods sagely, like he’s been through this sort of thing before. I wonder if he has.

:reggie: “Yeah I got you. Lemme know anytime you gotta bail, I’m not gonna hold it against you. Heck I could probably just put up a sign asking people to rent on the honor system and leave the place unlocked these days.”

:miatalk: “Please don’t do that, that’s a terrible idea.”

He laughs, and turns around to grab his clipboard and get back to work. Momo remains behind him, and I feel strangely calm. She’s screwing around but even Momo understands staying out of sight, and I’ve got Reggie on my side with the work stuff. I will also be putting the girlfriend thing out of my head thank you.

Momo looks over at me again, and I roll my eyes at her and point down at the desk in the universal signal for getting her ass over here. Surprisingly she complies, and patters down the aisle to come back to me.

Without warning, Reggie turns around again.

:reggie: “Oh so with- What the hell is that?”

He’s looking directly at Momo, who froze right in the middle of the aisle upon the words.

My manager, who just spotted Momo standing in the middle of the store, looks up at me with a baffled expression, and then back down at the fox.

Momo looks back at him.

She’s been spotted. I told her to pretend to be my pet if she’s spotted.

:momotalk: “Meow.”
No. 1039162 ID: d98cb8
File 165873871392.png - (1.20MB , 3333x2500 , p50.png )


Shit I know I told Momo to act like a pet but maybe I should have specified pet fox. Or made sure she was at all good at pretending to be something other than an idiot.

Reggie drops his clipboard in a box, starting to walk toward Momo, and I panic. My chair wobbles as I shove past it, hurrying around the edge of the counter to go grab Momo. I’m just short of breaking into an actual run here, furiously trying to think of how to explain this.

Maybe I should have gotten my story a little more solid before letting Momo free but it was a random impulse. I hadn’t even thought about the follow-through.


I scoop Momo up under my arm, turning to fast-walk my way back and shove her in my bag.

:reggie: “That doesn’t look like a cat, what-?”

:momotalk: “Woof?”

I swat Momo on the head, glancing over my shoulder. Reggie’s walking toward me, so I try and speed up while I answer, not looking back.

:miatalk: “She’s my- my pet fox. Who I shouldn’t have brought with me so I’m just gonna go now sorry Reggie I really need to leave now.”

:momotalk: “Yiff?”

I clamp my hand over her muzzle as I reach the desk and try to round the edge.


As I round the edge of the counter, I look up and see Reggie having caught up entirely, standing only a few feet away. His arms are crossed, but his face says amused.

:reggie: “Mia, it’s cool. Coulda just told me you had a pet. I was wondering what was up with the tail hanging out of your bag but didn’t want to pry.”

:miatalk: “Oh you uh, you saw that.”

My hand relaxes on Momo’s muzzle, and she takes the opportunity to hop out of my grip and up onto the counter, waving her tail proudly.

:reggie: “Yeah honestly I thought it was like, a suit or something, you know? Well behaved for a fox if she rides around in your bag. Is this what the flexible hours thing is about?”

Reggie leans in to pet Momo like a dog, scratching behind her ears.

:miatalk: “Aha, ha, yeah. I’m uh, bad at explaining sometimes. I’m dealing with my new pet fox.”

My manager nods and smiles, taking the pet fox idea in stride. He seem chill about it, giving Momo ear scritches as her tail waves. I relax a bit.

Momo opens her mouth in a happy smile, exposing her myriad teeth and complete lack of eyes.

Reggie’s hand stops as he stares at her, finally noticing the oddness. The too-bright fur patterns, the slightly off proportions, everything.

:reggie: “Mia, your fox... doesn’t have eyes.”

:miatalk: “Uh...”

His hand slides under her chin and tilts her head up, and Momo gives Reggie the toothiest grind she has. Then she giggles a little, quietly. It’s not a fox sound.

Reggie stares a long moment. I stand stock still, trying to figure out how to explain this.

:reggie: “This... isn’t a fox... is it?”


My bag is right next to me, and I’ve got Momo right in front. I could be out the door in moments.

I consider my options.

(A) Spill the beans.

I’ve known Reggie a year now and he’s weirdly probably the most trustworthy person I know. I could probably swear him to secrecy here. But I might be slightly late to my 4pm meeting with my mystery Mediator, unless I can convince Reggie to drive me there.


There’s deformed animals right? Pretty sure I’ve heard of cats born without eyes or something. I’m not the best liar though, and I’m on the back foot here. I don’t know if I can convince him unless it’s a really good lie.
(write in lies if you want this option)

(C) Follow my immediate instinct and run like hell.

This will definitely make Reggie suspicious, possibly enough to close the store and follow me down the street. And he’s got a car, while I’m on foot. He could follow me all the way to my meeting effortlessly. Heck if he knew where I was going he could beat me there by 20 minutes. I really need a car of my own.

Reggie is looking at me expectantly.

:reggie: “Mia?”
No. 1039164 ID: 15c72a

"Oh she has eyes sometimes though"
No. 1039169 ID: e5709d

Act like you see a perfectly normal fox. Stuff their face in Momo. Leave absentmindedly. Make them think you have been hypnotized or something. Technically, you were.
No. 1039174 ID: 9e7f25

A. It's out of the bag now "Heh". but just because you have to explain doesn't mean it'll take long. Just hit all the big points pertaining to momo.

She's: a shapeshifter from a different dimension, your bound companion, your new roommate, sometimes your pet, utterly lovable, and only part of the complicated reason that you need the very flexible schedule. Punctuate this by holding her up and asking her to introduce herself.
No. 1039185 ID: 7b75ea

Yeah, agreed; A, but keep it need-to-know.
No. 1039187 ID: 9a2966

A - pply face to palm. You wanted to get a better grounding in this world before you exposed anyone else to it, but now that it's at this stage... just power straight through! You tried Masks (well, not really, but the idea of it, at least), here comes Yang Soul and whatever passive persuasive powers it gives you. Maybe this won't be so bad? As Momo said, there are benefits on getting your boss on board.

Here goooesss...

Straighten up and 'officially' introduce them. Try to insert some ceremony into it, as you admit that Momo is anything but 'just a fox'. She is, among other things, also a ditzy dingbat, your new roommate and... a spirit of yang from the City of Passions. As he may be able to tell by her charming demeanour and winning smile.

(let Momo do the creepy grin thing - maybe if she gets a rise out of others you can deflect her getting a rise out of you and thus be able to steer the conversation more)

Gently (hand on head, rubbing fuzzy ears, firm grip implying you're ready to put the squeeze on if she annoys you further) remind her that she promised to stay fox-sized and be oh so very sneaky if you brought her along. Given how things went, you wonder how seriously you should take her promises?

At least you'd like her to keep this one: to not unduly do anything to or with Reggie here. In exchange you will tell him most of what happened yesterday. Though in exchange, you'd insist that he stay quiet about it and give you a ride to where you need to go, as you really do have a meeting to reach.

At the very least, definitely extract that promise from Reggie to stay quiet. You don't want telling him somehow attracting the wrong sort of attention - towards him neither, seeing as he's just a regular ol' human and these spirits can mean business! Share your entire tale, feeling weird, going to this place, meeting Momo, getting into a fight, getting your new duties.

The few things you may want to keep mum about is how you almost died (embarrassing, scary), the exact nature of your pact with Momo and your new powers (exciting, very embarrassing) and most of the contents of your conversation with Eve (solemn secrets, private, yours).

If he needs proof of more supernatural stuff than Momo is able (or willing) to show, you could just have him feel up your rock hard arm muscles - or perform some feat of athleticism. You were NOT this well-toned and tall (and busty, but eeeeh maybe not mention that) two days ago, yes?
No. 1039195 ID: 26049d

A, but give Momo hell for the necessity and make it clear that any future fox deployments will require normalcy. Why, oh why couldn't she just include a pair of eyes like a normal fox?
No. 1039221 ID: 815672

A, but like a soft A
You're getting caught up in something that involves her and you're still trying to figure it out. If he really wants to know he can drive you to your meeting but otherwise you need to get going.
No. 1039223 ID: d9c193

Outta the bag? Hardly, just play clueless.
"Got no idea what it is, but it looks like a fox, so I'm calling it a fox. Fed it, now it follows, so probably domesticated, but beyond that, no clue."
No. 1039272 ID: e51896

B, because it'll be funny, perhaps to the point where she HAS to tell the truth.
No. 1039273 ID: a186c5

Dodge the question a bit with one of your own! "Not a fox? Sure looks like a fox to me! And they make all kinds of sounds; I'm sure you've heard the song. Why, what do YOU think she is?"
No. 1039284 ID: 0840c2

A. Spill the beans
No. 1039285 ID: 19927f

A/B tell him she's your Magical Girl mentor mascot.
No. 1039356 ID: 57b4dc

More or less this - basically take a rain check, to whatever extent possible. "...Can I get back to you on that? (Show some exhaustion.) I'm still in the process of trying to figure out what exactly is going on, and don't really know how to explain everything, yet. That meeting I mentioned will hopefully help. Speaking of...."
No. 1039357 ID: 629f2e


Ditto. Dodge the question for now.
No. 1041392 ID: d98cb8
File 166100102160.png - (395.62KB , 3200x2400 , P51.png )

Reggie is staring at me.

Momo looks back at me.

:miatalk: “Uh... This is what foxes look like, right? How many have you seen up close?”

Reggie’s eyebrow raises. I’m a terrible liar. Never had to do it much with my mom, and I never had anything I needed to lie about for school.

:miatalk: “She’s uh... got eyes. Sometimes?”

Momo looks up at him and does that weird thing with her mouth/eye/teeth thing again. It’s as disconcerting as it was this morning.

Not helping, Momo.

Reggie’s eyebrows climb, and I decide to just spill the beans. To an extent.

:miatalk: “Look, it’s a complicated thing to explain, and uh... I actually do need to get to that meeting. It involves this situation. I’ll tell you everything I can if you’ll drive me.”

To my relief, Reggie smiles. I’ve known him for about a year now and somehow expected this to be his reaction. It’s a lot more reassuring than I thought.

:reggie: “Deal. Lemme lock up real quick.”


So as Reggie drives, I tell him the story. Some things are left out, like the exact details of my dream with Eve.

Or how I formed the pact with Momo. I’m still processing that.

And I definitely skim past the specifics on almost dying last night, because it honestly feels embarassing to think about telling my story of defiant anger etc etc. Way too much like an action cartoon.

I even tell him why I’m headed to the meeting. My rescuer.

Momo meanwhile is dropped in the backseat with my bag, where I’m fairly sure she’s digging through the junk Reggie has tossed there. Some spare clothes, boxes of what looks like cards of some kind, other things. Guy stuff I guess.

As the story winds down to the present, I wait for a reaction.

:reggie: “That’s wild.”

I can’t decide if I’m surprised or not.

:miatalk: “You’re just going to believe me, like that?”

He laughs, taking a turn and grinning.

:reggie: “Fuck I have no idea, Mia. Dunno how much I believe it, but I can tell you believe it. It’s a wild story though. Wild. Half expected you to go all E.T. on me instead, tell me she’s an alien.”

Momo peeks her head over the seat and speaks up.

:momotalk: “Do I look like an alien?”

For his credit, Reggie manages to only swerve a little bit at this point. My heart jumps up into my throat but it’s only the usual reaction to feeling like you’re about to be in a car accident. I look back at the fox.

:miatalk: “I thought you were being really quiet. Were you waiting for the best moment to surprise him?”

She cracks a grin.

:momotalk: “Mia, why would you think that? Such a hurtful accusation~”

:miatalk: “Because I’ve known you for under a day and I’m pretty sure I’ve got a solid idea on what you enjoy.”

She opens her mouth to respond and I put my hand on her head and shove Momo into the backseat again. She giggles in amusement but doesn’t say anything.

Reggie watches and listens to this with a strange look on his face.

:reggie: “I guess I’d uh, assumed she couldn’t speak while in the fox form or something. Since she wasn’t. While being a weird fox. Speaking I mean.”

Oh, there’s the disbelief and confusion. I expected that eventually. Should probably keep it casual and try to not break Reggie’s brain.

:miatalk: “I know it’s weird. And hard to wrap your head around. But also as bizarre as Momo is, she’s also just a lot like having that one friend who likes to start shit because it’s funny. She’s just a lot furrier.”

He nods, eyes wide and looking at the road. And then starts laughing a little. It’s not quite hysterical laughter.

:miatalk: “Uh, Reggie?”

Reggie calms himself down to a giggle by the time he hits the next stoplight.

:reggie: “When you said that, it just made me think of a guy I used to know. Party animal. Hairy arms and chest, needed some major manscaping. The furry friend who starts shit.”

He wipes a tear from his eye.

:reggie: “Okay, okay. I’m cool. Talking fox who turns into a foxlady in my backseat. My employee has magic powers. Spirit worlds. I can roll with that.”

The car merges onto the highway, which isn’t too busy because Wolfport isn’t exactly a bustling city on a tuesday afternoon.

:reggie: “Okay so I said I believe you. But can you like, at least show me some magic or something?”

:miatalk: “Uh...”

I consider a moment. I don’t exactly have flashy powers, and I don’t know that letting Reggie feel up my new muscles would do anything than be awkward and maybe mess with my head. But I guess Motion might be visual enough? I glance around, and spy one of those clip on plastic air fresheners that go in the AC vents.

:miatalk: “Sure, I got this.”

Sliding the air freshener out, I hold it on my palm and focus. The power flows easily through me, feeling warm inside.

And the little plastic bit floats into the air above my palm, easy as that.

Part of me had worried that maybe it wouldn’t work when I needed it to.

I’d done my little trick close enough to the dashboard that Reggie didn’t really have to turn his head from watching the road to see it. To my gratification it’s less shock and more interest.

:reggie: “Damn, that’s cool. Magic powers. You make it look easy.”

I shrug.

:miatalk: “This kinda is? I didn’t really have to think about it.”

:reggie: “Yeah? Huh. And it floats still in the air, so it’s like, relative to you when it moves. Guess that makes sense.”

:miatalk: “Huh?”

:reggie: “Well we’re going 40 down the highway and you’re moving it with your mind, so it’s actually moving too, right? Like it’s all relative to you.”

I think on that for a second, wondering. I guess stuff I move with Motion keeps the momentum and everything, which means I’m just adding more in a-

As I think about it, suddenly the air freshener shoots backward in the car, slamming into the rear window at full force with a loud crack. Shards of plastic fly all over, along with a splat of fragrant oil.

I look back in shock, while somehow Reggie manages to not swerve at all this time.

There’s a crack in his rear window.

He glances at the rearview mirror, and frowns.

:miatalk: “I think I thought about it too hard.”

Momo giggles maniacally from the back seat.

:reggie: “Sure. That makes sense.”

:miatalk: “Sorry about the window.”

He laughs again. Thank god Reggie is one of the more relaxed people I’ve ever met.

:reggie: “I’ve had windows busted for stupider reasons. It’s okay, Mia. And hey now I have no way to pretend later that I was imagining all of this.”

Looking back at the crack, and smelling the pine needle scent wafting all over the car, I think about that. I might not have believed my own story if I hadn’t woke up to Momo in my apartment.

:reggie: “Anyway uh, here’s that scrapyard. You’re sure this is where you need to be? Looks like a shithole.”

I look up at the place. It’s on the edge of town, and would have been a fair walk out here. It does look exactly like a shithole, while also having almost nothing nearby but old factory space around. Really quiet area to not have anyone to come help if something happens.

I glance back at Reggie’s window again.

:miatalk: “Yeah this is the place. And I’ll be fine, don’t worry.”

He looks dubious.

:reggie: “Want me to stick around?”

I shake my head, reaching into the backseat to grab my bag.

:miatalk: “I really have no idea how long this is going to take. Go open the store up again. Really. I’ll be okay.”

:reggie: “Well, let me know what’s up then. You said you needed flexible hours, and I’ll admit this is the best excuse to let an employee bail on shifts I have ever heard.”

I open the car door, and Reggie raises a fist. I’m confused for a second before I remember that it’s a thing people do I guess. Making a fist, I bump his.

:reggie: “Weak bump, Mia. Gotta work on that. Good luck, you badass. Peace, Momo.”

He nods to the fox as she hops into the front seat and then into my bag in one fluid movement. I’m convinced she’s not moving like a regular fox in any way like that.

Momo leans out over the top of the bag and looks at Reggie before speaking up.

:momotalk: “I took all of your pens and hid them. All of them.”

The nonplussed look on his face actually gives me a laugh as I close the car door. I’ll admit that when I’m not the target that sort of stuff might actually be fun.
No. 1041394 ID: d98cb8
File 166100111265.png - (34.76KB , 800x600 , p52.png )

I wander into Meyer Auto Salvage, and notice a complete lack of anyone around. It’s a few minutes to 4pm, so I’d assume it’s open, especially with the front gate rolled aside, but the small building near the front looks locked up with the lights off.

No sounds, really. It’s quiet aside from the noises of cars cruising past on the highway nearby.

:miatalk: “It’s like someone tried really hard for spooky. Or suspicious.”

I’ve got the flap on my bag flipped back so Momo can see what’s going on, and she hops down to pitter along beside me. She looks with interest at the junk all around.

:momotalk: “Plenty of things to drop on someone if you need to fight again.”

:miatalk: “Yeah I hope not, thanks.”

The note had said back lot, so I head inward. Walls of cars, crushed metal of all kinds, scrap. What happens to cars when they’re towed away after an accident, I guess. I’d never thought about it before. This is the sort of place you just drive past and don’t think about.

It’s kinda neat though. Like a weird metal maze. I’d probably be less optimistic walking here were this any day before yesterday, but having Momo here helped. As did knowing that I could probably kick ass if needed.

As Reggie said, I’m a badass. I got this. Nothing here’s gonna surprise me. Gonna meet this mysterious Mediator who helped me and get some proper answers.

I repeat this to myself as a mantra, approaching the rear area of the scrapyard, and turn one last corner into a large open space. The back lot, I presume. Bounded on all sides by towering walls of cars and scrap. Probably a fantastic place to meet someone without being seen.

Annoyingly it seems like there’s nobody here despite it being only a minute until the meeting time. After all that worry about being on time, I’m the one left waiting.

:miatalk: “I guess we wait?”

The back lot isn’t perfectly cleared, as there’s compressed metal blocks and random junk all over the place. I spot what looks like the backseat bench out of an older car sitting solidly against the side of a VW that’s absolutely too small for it. Good place to take a seat.

Barely half of the way to it and I feel a weird wobble, like vertigo, but from the wrong direction. Like the usual internal feeling was an external one, and it was coming from... dead ahead. Right in front of me in the scrapyard.

It wasn’t hard to figure out as a cold black and blue glow began to swirl and crackle in the air dead ahead of me. The cold wasn’t merely in the air, but in my spirit itself.

A portal, like before. A yin portal.

Something was coming through, right here in front of me.

My bravado flees as I begin to panic. I barely made it out of last night’s situation, and I’m not feeling especially ready for this. It wasn’t fair for this to happen before I even get answers from the other mediator. Unless this is planned? An ambush?

I look to Momo, and she’s shifted into her normal form. There’s a serious look to her expression as she catches me eye.

:momotalk: “Reconsider fighting?”

I begin to do exactly that.

There’s a lot of objects I could hide behind or use for cover. There’s debris everywhere that could work for Motion, or I could even just try throwing with Yang Soul. I also have Masks but I’m not entirely sure how that works yet beyond vague ideas.

I could try to run, back the way I came. I don’t know if I’ll be out of the lot before they come through the portal, and if I’m not I’ll probably end up with a target on my back.

There’s the option of trying to talk it out, but so far my experiences with yin spirits has been less than stellar. Yang Soul can I think make me more persuasive somehow, but I’m not sure how the hell that works.

Any decision I make, I need to make now.


Battle Plan Time! A) Duck Behind Cover B) Run For It C) Diplomacy Mia’s capabilities: -Yang Soul - Strength, Agility, Charisma enhancement -Motion - Telekinetic control -Masks - A form of obscuration, yet to be fully explored Momo’s (known) capabilities: -Some shapeshifting? -Seems really fast? -Able to do something involving illusions with her tails that distracts people? Whatever Mia chooses to do, she needs a plan!
No. 1041397 ID: 708905

A) Duck Behind Cover
It's possible our contact is portaling in so we shouldn't go immediately offensive, at the same time this could be hostile so we should still get ready
-See if we can usk masks to somehow hide better

Oh and tell Momo to hide until we figure out what we're dealing with.
No. 1041412 ID: e51896

A. best way to practice Mask this way!
No. 1041415 ID: 15c72a

A. However, this could be a different kind of Yin spirit, so give them a chance to talk before opening fire at least.
No. 1041416 ID: 90c451

Hide and try to see who it is and why they're here.
No. 1041495 ID: 067372

Sheesh, unfair is right.

Well, running away feels like shirking your duty, though I'd not rule it out if things got to be way too much. Diplomacy can be a fallback option; for now hide and wait and see what's up. Likely not a coincidence they're showing up here at the appointed time. OTOH, if it were a trap, seems like it'd make more sense to have already been waiting. I guess just see what happens? Maybe your contact has a contract with the other side of the coin.
No. 1041497 ID: 8483cf

No. 1045713 ID: d98cb8
File 166515342667.png - (3.14MB , 2500x3333 , P53.png )

Hiding seems best. I can hide, scope, and prepare for a fight if I have to. I’d thought this might be easy, but it seems like I’m going to deal with more hassle.

A pile of tires near me proves the perfect cover, and I duck behind it while focusing on the power of Masks I know I have. It’s slightly weird though, sluggish, and I can’t quite tell if it’s working.

:miatalk: “Quick, hide.”

I glance over, but Momo has already moved behind a compressed block of metal of some kind. We exchange glances.

I feel the world shiver in my mind. The gap between two tires lets me see where it’s coming from.

This portal opens smoothly, without the awkwardness that Momo had shown, or the breaking through that the clockworkers had done. It simply goes from a pinprick of light in the air to a glowing circle of warmth and bright orange light.

Illuminated from behind in a way that makes it hard to make out any details, I can see a man on the other side of the portal, tall and lanky, but something is off about his profile. A spirit? Not quite human.

“I promise I’ll let you know when I get any news. See you next week?”

The voice is weirdly familiar, and I try to place it as I listen for a response that I can’t quite make out. But before I figure it out, the man steps through the opening fully. A black bird dives from the sky to land on his shoulder as he does, and only now do I notice a lot of them perched up above us. They dot the upper edges of the metal heaps surrounding the back lot. Ravens or crows, or something like that I think.

With no fanfare, the portal slides shut, as smoothly as it opened. I can feel the slight quiver of the world simply stop. Easy as that.

Without the backlighting in this slightly shadowed lot, I’m able to see exactly who stands there, bird resting atop the coat he has draped over his shoulder.

There’s no inhumanity in the simple sight of Mr. Murphy, my robotics teacher and my college advisor for my degree.


Momo begins snickering in a barely suppressed giggle, still crouched nearby. The serious look on her face is gone as if it had never been there to begin with. I gape in confusion through the gap at this seriously out of context situation.

:proftalk: “Why are you crouched behind there?”

He speaks directly at my hiding place, as if I’m as visible as day. I blink at this and stand up, staring. He pulls his phone out to casually check it.

:proftalk: “Worried I’d be late, but you’re punctual as usual, Miss Rhodes. Wasn’t too hard to find the place?”

:miatalk: “Huh? What?”

Mr. Murphy slides his phone into his pocket and pushes his glasses up. He looks as tired as usual. I’m more confused than ever.

:proftalk: “Amelia?”

I blink at him and respond automatically as I do whenever someone uses my full name.

:miatalk: “I... prefer Mia. What are you doing here, Mr. Murphy?”

Now HE looks confused too.

:proftalk: “I left you a note? It’s why you’re here, right?”

:miatalk: “YOU left the note? You’re the person who helped me?”

My teacher looks absolutely baffled now.

:proftalk: “I signed it, Mia. You missed the signature at the bottom?”

I look over at Momo, who’s stood up as well at this point.

:miatalk: “Momo read it out to me, I didn’t actually- Did you not read me all of it?”

Contrary to my expectations, she doesn’t giggle. Momo looks as confused as I do, or at least as much as a fox woman can look confused without eyes.

:momotalk: “I didn’t see any more words, only a doodle at the bottom. A little zig-zag picture! I even told you about it!”

Suddenly it clicks that I only glanced at it myself after she’d said that. I’d been promptly distracted by her turning into a fox. Now it made sense, and it wasn’t even Momo’s fault either.

I look over at Mr. Murphy, feeling slightly annoyed.

:miatalk: “You mean that weird sideways scribble you put on papers that looks nothing like a signature?”

He opens his mouth as if to object, then pauses, considers, and closes it again.

:proftalk: “I thought you’d recognize it?”

:miatalk: “Probably not in the context of a Mediator who’d saved my butt, instead of seeing it on a graded essay!”

I’m a little exasperated at this. It’s a terrible signature and he’s even had people mention that in class. He raises his hands to accede the point, and sighs.

:proftalk: “Fair point. I just didn’t want to be too open about who I was.”

:miatalk: “But... you wanted to meet me? Why all the secrecy only to just meet me in person today?”

He looks meaningfully toward Momo.

:proftalk: “I didn’t want to assume you wanted her to know every detail of your life. I was unsure enough about leaving you together until she swore to protect you.”

Now that was news to me. I look at Momo only to see she’d somehow moved again noiselessly. I glance around for the fox woman.

A bell chimes gently, and I glance up to find her sitting up on the hood of a nearby car, kicking her feet. She shrugs as I meet her gaze.

:momotalk: “I made a pact! It seemed only polite.”

I snort in derision at that.

:miatalk: “I’d say you’re the least polite person I know, but I know someone worse. You’re in the running though.”

Mr. Murphy had been watching this exchange. The expression on his face was hard to decipher. Contemplative, maybe. Like he didn’t expect how we were acting.

:proftalk: “I see you’ve decided on trust.”

He walks up to me, eyes seeming to glaze over slightly as he nears in a way that almost seemed to be looking past me. There’s a strange glimmer to them, and the color seems off.

:proftalk: “Let me check something though.”

He reaches out with one hand, grabbing my shoulder.

With his other hand, my teacher seems to grab something in the air only a few inches in front of my chest, and pulls.


There’s a sharp pain that at first I thought ran through my whole body, but it hasn’t. It was somehow deeper than my body. Like somehow he’d yanked on my soul itself.

I can’t help but yelp in a thoroughly unflattering way, trying to flinch back.

:miatalk: “OW FUCK OW”

He lets go of whatever he was pulling on and my shoulder, and steps back, eyes focusing again.

:proftalk: “Damn.”

:miatalk: “Mr. Murphy, what the-”

He cuts me off mid-sentence.

:proftalk: “It’s Will. I made it optional in the classroom but if I’m going to be teaching you, you’re going to drop the Mr. Murphy. Makes me feel old.”

I decide not to point out that he is kinda old, for fear of him doing whatever he just did again. Will sighs, shaking his head.

:proftalk: “And that right there was your pact. It’s solid, no removing it. At least not without someone a lot more skilled than I am.”

I rub my chest, which I’m fully aware has nothing to do with what he was pulling on but it made me feel better to do it anyway.

:miatalk: “It really hurt. Couldn’t have been nicer about it?”

:proftalk: “Sorry, nope. Couldn’t test without pulling. If anything it’s rooted deeper than I expected.”

:miatalk: “Is that bad?”

He shrugs completely unhelpfully.

:proftalk: “Might be a little deeper than usual, often happens due to intense emotions during the process. I’m not nearly skilled enough with Threads to be able to tell beyond the fact that it’s permanent.”

At the mention of intense emotions I remember the kiss again. I try very hard not to blush. I think I mostly succeed.

That was NOT because of the kiss. It was a crisis moment. Fear and desperation are intense emotions. That sort of thing.

Will eyeballs me and then Momo, but thankfully says nothing. Momo for her part seems to be intent on watching with interest and saying nothing yet. I’m sure my embarrassment at how we formed the pact will be revealed at exactly the best moment to mortify me.

I cough and gather my thoughts.

:proftalk: “Uh, permanent sounds kinda bad though. I don’t hate Momo or anything, but we’re stuck together for good?”

He eyeballs Momo even harder when I say her name, weirdly enough.

:proftalk: “Momo, huh? And for the time being, yes. We’ll figure out a solution eventually, though. This isn’t a stable situation for you.”

:miatalk: “What do you mean? Having her around?”

Will quits staring at Momo and looks back at me, frustration on his face.

:proftalk: “Danu and her challenges. Sometimes I feel like she’s just screwing with me.”

He sighs, loudly.

:proftalk: “Mia, there are yin spirits, and there are yang spirits, and then there’s us, We’re in the middle. For all intents and purposes, spirits of balance.”

:miatalk: “I’m a spirit now?”

:proftalk: “More or less. A spirit of balance, bonded to a physical body. Except you’re not, because of the pact.”

:miatalk: “Wait, Momo told me about the balance thing.”

:proftalk: “Taking up such an open pact has flooded you with yang energy, Mia. Most pacts have safeguards in place, contractual obligations, limits to stop this very issue. You’re unbalanced.”
No. 1045714 ID: d98cb8
File 166515347667.png - (1.46MB , 2500x3333 , P54.png )

My gaze meets Momo’s once more. She looks uncharacteristically unhappy. Will’s annoyed stare follows mine.

:proftalk: “What were you thinking? A fresh Mediator, didn’t know better, and you decided to just do this to her? Take what you want to get your way?”

Momo seemed to wilt at Will’s accusation.

:miatalk: “Hey uh, Mr- Will. Momo saved me. I don’t know all the specifics but I couldn’t have dealt with that on my own.”

He looks back at me, and sighs.

:proftalk: “I figured. It’s the sort of thing she’d steer you into purposefully. Always the greater purpose. Doesn’t mean I can’t be frustrated about it. Or about ‘Momo’ being highly irresponsible about it.”

:miatalk: “Momo steering me?”

Will points one finger toward the sky.

:proftalk: “I meant Danu. The lady upstairs. Whatever she called you when you met. Always a bigger plan, as annoying as that can be for us down here at the bottom.”

:miatalk: “Oh. She called herself Eve. You uh, don’t like her?”

He sighs again. I’d noticed as a teacher Mr. Murphy always seemed tired, but this was fresh context for that.

:proftalk: “I don’t... dislike her. But I am waiting to eventually have another chat with her so I can give her a piece of my mind. Personal complaints. And it still leaves our resident yang spirit on the hook for her behavior.”

Momo mumbles something in response.

:proftalk: “What was that?”

She huffs loudly, and all but shouts.

:momotalk: “I CAN’T form a better pact! It’s too much power and I don’t have the skill! It was all or none!”

To my absolute surprise, Momo stands and turns, stomping a few feet further away to stand with her arms crossed looking away from us. She seems legitimately frustrated, in a way I hadn’t expected she could even be. Was Will actually hitting a sore point here?

:proftalk: “And THAT is why you were always turned away when you tried coming here, ‘Momo’. Too much power without control.”

Okay that was getting annoying. Time to just ask the damn question.

:miatalk: “Will, why the hell do you keep saying her name like that?”

He scoffs, actually scoffs at it. I don’t know that I’ve ever had someone scoff at me in such a theatrical way.

:proftalk: “Because it’s not her name, Mia.”

Momo mutters petulantly, just loud enough to hear.

:momotalk: “I like Momo. It’s cute.”

:miatalk: “Uh, yeah, I kinda remember Eve calling her um, Tamamo. So what?”

:proftalk: “So what is that’s still only part of her name. Care to tell her the rest, Tamamo?”

Momo turns around, looking frustrated and annoyed and sad all at the same time. It’s difficult to look at, and leaves me internally struggling. I kinda want to tell Will to lay off, but on the other hand he seems to actually know what’s going on here.

:momotalk: “Tamamo-no-Mae, Changing Queen of the City of Passions. Happy now?”

This is less surprising than it is absolutely unlikely. Momo is the least regal person I’ve ever met.

:miatalk: “You have to be kidding me. You’re the queen?”

She puts her hands on her hips, her tails slightly fluffed.

:momotalk: “I’m only ONE of them. There’s a bunch, that’s why we’re the Changing Queens. And I quit, so I’m not now and I’m not going back.”

:proftalk: “You can’t just quit being what you are! That’s not how it works! As a fundamental part of-”

I begin laughing. I can’t help it. It cuts Will short in his rant.

This whole situation is silly. Momo is a queen who’s quit her throne and I guess is now my roommate/pet, my engineering professor is a Mediator and said he’s going to be teaching me, and they’re busy being snippy at each other. It’s absurd.

It takes me a moment to catch my breath, with Will looking worried at me the whole time. Momo just looks confused.

:miatalk: “Will, she might have done something stupid but it saved my life to have her there when everything went down. She’s cool in my books.”

He goes to comment and I cut him off again. Weirdly refreshing to do that to a teacher.

:miatalk: “Even without that, I know her name because Eve told me specifically that I can trust her.”

His brow furrows.

:proftalk: “She did?”

:miatalk: “Yeah, and was super clear it was like, a godly pronouncement deal. But she’s proven herself anyway, so lay off her. Please.”

I absolutely cannot tell what’s on Momo’s mind while looking at her. Her face seems almost blank. But I can see Will’s frustration melt into begrudging acceptance.

:proftalk: “Alright. Sorry, Mia. Some long-standing grievances here. And we’re pretty far off-topic from the intended talk here.”

:miatalk: “Which is?”

He smiles, just a little.

:proftalk: “Mediator 101, really. Orientation day.”

Will points at Momo, managing to tone back his annoyance into sternness.

:proftalk: “Since Mia vouched for you, you’re with her. What she learns, you learn. You wanted your pact so you’re getting it. Welcome to being a Mediator.”

:momotalk: “Eh?”

The moment of confusion on Momo’s face is something I take in as much as possible. Something to remember and bring out when she’s being annoying. Momo at her most off-guard.

:proftalk: “I can see exactly how much you lost, coming here. I’m not going to have you uselessly weighing Mia down, Momo. You’ll pull your own weight as long as she’s your pactbearer.”

Momo looks toward me, surprised. I shrug. If she’s sticking around why not help me, right?

:momotalk: “Okay. Deal.”

She accedes to the demand, still seemingly on the back foot at this pronouncement. Will just nods, and then crosses his arms as if to say that’s enough.

:proftalk: “Now, I’ll go through a rundown in a moment, but you’ve had a bit of a scattershot introduction to all of this. Normally your mentor would locate you before doing... all of that last night.”

He checks his phone.

:proftalk: “Got a couple tasks to go handle in a few, busy day actually, so this will make good training. So how about questions while I work through the basics for you? Ask away.”

I should probably have expected this. Will’s teaching method was always something along the lines of lecturing while answering constant questions to fill in gaps. Go figure he’s going to do this with a class of one.

Or two I guess, counting Momo. I open my mouth to ask, and he comments idly in a wry tone.

:proftalk: “And then I can dump half my job on you today and watch you struggle.”

:miatalk: “What?!”

Momo snickers and I give her a side-eye glance before looking back to Will. I guess she’s less alarmed by this than I am.

He shrugs and smiles, and I note that the entire time this has happened the crow on his shoulder has barely moved other than to gaze at me. I’d basically forgotten it was there somehow, despite everything.

:proftalk: “We all fumble through at first. I did and my mentor got to laugh over it. I’m going to take the little pleasures where I can, Mia.”


Ask away! Make sure you find out anything you think may be important for Mia to know before Will throws her into the deep end!


A disthread for Unbalanced etc is now open!

No. 1045720 ID: 30b9f6

Awright, questions, questions, boy do you have questions! Let's see...

>Question 1 - Mediator jobs
Can he describe the functions of a Mediator? From the up top high concept versus the down on the street nitty gritty of it... what do the Mediators actually DO? 'Keep the balance' is somewhat nebulous, even if you get the obvious gist. You don't need a super-comprehensive rundown, but a few examples would be nice.

>Question 2 - Secret World
How bad is it to tell or show ordinary people about, y'know, this sort of stuff? Can you have, like, family, friends, people you can trust with some of this? You're pretty sure your family might realize you changed a bit the next time you speak to them! (mmmaybe don't mention your one blooper so far)

>Question 3 - Unbalanced
What does it mean to be "unbalanced", at least practically speaking? Do you have to, like, walk some kind of swaying tightrope now when using your superpower-like abilities, or do certain powers come harder to you, or will some spirits dislike you more, or what? Is being unbalanced something that can happen to all Mediators, or are you a special case because of what happened to Momo?

>Question 4 - Keeping Up With Life
Does he have any tips for living an ordinary life with all of this on you? You're... a bit curious where your life is headed now, with this new role, but it's not like you're abandoning your studies. You're still on a scholarship for that degree, so you can't lapse too much either... and you certainly don't expect he'll go easy on you in class if he's sink or swimming you on this.

>Question 5 - Powers
You've got some supernatural powers, now. How do you use them, how do you train them, how do you get more?

>Question 6 - Crows/Ravens
So... that's another spirit or spirits that he's pact'd up with, right? Something cool 'n funky, anyway.

>Question Momo
And let Momo ask a few questions too, rather than just letting her interject and poke fun. After all, if you two are going to be doing this together, she should get to pluck his brain too, right?

Don't ask about Momo from him. He clearly knows more about her than you do, but you'd rather figure that out yourself. Or let Momo herself say it.
No. 1045721 ID: fec07f

So if I'm understanding this correctly we're currently unbalanced favouring Yang because of our unbreakable pact with Momo.
A. What are the implications of being an unbalanced mediator?
B. Is there some way to rebalance? Could we form a similar pact with a Yin spirit to do so?
No. 1045771 ID: bbb04b

"I have some high concept stuff, but first: Being Unbalanced. That sounds bad, so I want to know: Is fixing it is as simple as grabbing the ear of a powerful Yin spirit to offer a rare opportunity?"

Then this.
No. 1045839 ID: e5709d

* Will using Yin powers more often than Yang powers act as a counterbalance?
* What happens if I go extremely Yang?
* Am I in danger of merging my soul with Momo's?
* Why is Eve so damn... busty?
* Is there some kind of guild or neutral ground or watering hole for us agents?
* Why does this 'balance' seem so demographically abnormal? Hopefully there's like 500,000 agents in Africa and 1,000,000 in Eurasia. Two middle-class normies getting superpowers in the same district is like finding two seven-leaf clovers.
* Is there some kind of trick to leveling up? I figured we're supposed to play to our regular strengths and apply them in combat or something.
* How long has this war gone on? Did Yin and Yang emerge from physical chaos or is it the other way around?
* Okay but seriously why are we in an anime.
No. 1045895 ID: 690b82

How many mediators are there in a given city, per capita?
What are the concrete objectives of the Yin and Yang factions, and do individuals generally support their faction's goals, or pursue their own?
Is there a cleanup crew to call, if e.g. a building falls over or a battle crosses in front of a news camera?
No. 1045897 ID: 8483cf

Everything asked here and in the linked post!
No. 1050481 ID: d98cb8
File 166972662213.png - (1.25MB , 2400x1600 , p55.png )

A while later...

My feet hit the pavement in rhythm as I run, pushing myself to a specific limit. It’s a strangely relaxing thing to do, with my breathing timed perfectly for it, all my concentration and focus forward.

:momotalk: “How far are we?”

Momo’s question jars me out of my concentration, from her location clinging to the back of my jacket. Immediately I have to slow down with yang soul slipping from my body, or risk hurting myself. I’d already figured that problem out.

I glance at the nearest street sign.

:miatalk: “Halfway there, I think. I’m kinda zigzagging because of streets and everything, but I think it’s another five miles? Now hush, I need to focus.”

:momotalk: “Silly to need so much work just to run, Mia!”

Ignoring her playful comment, I take a deep breath and reach for that wellspring of power inside me, and draw it into my body, infusing my muscles.

Yang soul makes me stronger, faster, even sustains me while I do it, but it doesn’t want to be controlled. It’s all wild and raw. If I just move like my body wants to while using it I’d be passing slower cars easily... For about a minute.

And then I’d collapse, with no energy left to do anything at all. I’d need a meal and a nap.

If I’m going to make the deadline, I need to throttle down to the point where I’m not burning my energy much faster than I recover it, and stay at that rate. Sure it’s slower, but theoretically I can keep it going all day that way.

If I can stay focused, which is the hardest part of the whole thing.

I reach up to pat Momo on the head. It’s pretty much impossible not to want to do it when she’s in that fox form. We’d already discovered that her weight in my bag while I was running messed with my strides, so my back it is.

:miatalk: “Ready?”

:momotalk: “Sprint, loyal steed!”

Discarding an urge to bop her on the snout for that comment, I pick up my pace once more.

As I do, I think back to what I learned.


After lining out what I’d gone through in detail, Will had me sit down while he outlined the basics.

As a Mediator, keeping the balance was about preventing the weird shit from the spirit worlds from screwing up the mortal world. Sometimes this was something as simple as ejecting a spirit out of the mortal world in the most direct way possible (like I did last night with the clockworkers), and sometimes this was as complicated as negotiating a peace treaty between warring spirits.

Pretty much his answer on ‘what’s my day to day job’ was to shrug and tell me it changes every day.


But apparently there’s no rule against telling people about spirits, so I’m not in trouble or anything. I guess having normal people around you can confide in is actually helpful and keeps you grounded when your life is weird shit. There’s no attempt at all to enforce secrecy.

Seems weird to me, but Will said that most vanilla mortals don’t really want to know about weird stuff. They’d prefer to find literally any logical explanation in their head other than magic and spirits, and will sometimes jump through some major mental hoops to avoid facing reality.

I guess that kinda makes sense.

But what made even less sense was being told that we have no organizational structure.

None at all.

Apparently Mediators form sorta networks of contacts, and might even end up texting between each other to coordinate stuff or get help, but there’s nobody in charge.

Every time there’s been a proposal come up to organize better, people just aren’t interested. Some bring up the fact that they don’t want to become some shadowy magical group running the world behind the scenes. We’re all just people doing a job.

Will said he suspects that’s because the criteria for becoming a Mediator probably filters out the sort of person who’ll want to do that. We’re all handpicked by Balance, and she can see the future after all.

I tried to ask about new powers and stuff, but Will said that’s definitely not a day one deal, not when I’m barely learning the ones I’ve got, but at least confirmed that’s a thing. I’m not really a power seeker but I watch some cartoons and I’d admit that the idea of having a bunch of awesome superpowers is kinda cool. But I’m not saying that out loud and nobody can prove I’m thinking it.

I’d left the unbalanced thing for last, partially because it seems like it’ll be bad news and I wasn’t looking forward to it.

I’m told that a normal pact has rules keeping the power flowing back and forth in specific amounts, or for specific purposes. His crow thing seems to be a pact, but he didn’t want to go into details on it beyond explaining that it’s a properly drawn up contract. Mine is weird because I’m pretty much always getting a flow of yang energy from Momo, without any limits.

This isn’t immediately dangerous, but apparently it means I’ll gradually become more ‘tilted’ in that direction. More physically capable, but also less able to control my emotions or keep from being impulsive with decisions. Yang based powers are going to be easier, but yin stuff is going to be harder to master and use.

Is there a solution?

Will says he’ll look into figuring that one out, but it would help if I try to practice meditation and focus exercises. I have his permission in the meantime to not worry about it.


And then he’d cut the endless questions short.

:proftalk: “There’s no need to get all the questions in today, Mia. We’ll do something practical today, and meet up again later in the week.”

:miatalk: “Sure, okay.”

My butt had been getting sore anyway, sitting on what I think was an engine block. Momo was lounging on top of the hood of a car, staring at the sky still. I stood up and straightened out my skirt.

:proftalk: “So it seems we’re going to be dealing with a couple visitors in... two or three hours.”

In the middle of that pause he’d focused weirdly, like he was listening intently to something.

:proftalk: “This gives us just enough time to handle a meeting I’ve got across town, in forty minutes.”

:miatalk: “You can tell when spirits are coming? How?”

:proftalk: “Magic. To be specific, magic combined with a whole lot of training and effort in order to specialize in that.”

That’s fair I guess. The answer is magic. I have the feeling that’s going to be the answer to a lot of stuff in my life these days.

:proftalk: “Anyway, you’ve got forty minutes. Go get a bite to eat, meet me at this address.”

Will pulls out his wallet, one of those big booklike ones, and takes a pre-written sticky note from it to pass it to me. It’s the address of a hospital, on the other end of Wolfport. Suddenly the context of telling me to go get a meal instead of using a ‘we’ in this situation clicks.

:miatalk: “I don’t have a car, Will.”

:proftalk: “Oh? How’d you get here?”

:momotalk: “Her friend brought us in his car!”

Momo comments, still lounging. Her feet kick in the air, and I can see pawpads on them. Weird she doesn’t have those on her hands too.

:miatalk: “Yeah I got a ride.”

Will’s expression breaks out into a grin I’m not sure I like.

:proftalk: “Perfect then. Training opportunity.”

:miatalk: “I’m sorry?”

:proftalk: “Given the time you have, you should be able to run it. You’ll probably want to use yang soul, all things considered. Learn to run with it.”

:miatalk: “What-”

:proftalk: “Don’t be late, Mia.”

The last comment is made as my mentor turns and walks away, laughing to himself. I look over to Momo, who’s slid off the hood of the car to lay on the ground. She was grinning from ear to ear, literally.

:momotalk: “I’ve changed my mind. I like him.”

I sighed.

And then I began learning to run.
No. 1050482 ID: d98cb8
File 166972666009.png - (1.44MB , 1600x2400 , p56.png )

So I’ve never been big on exercise.

I’ve got no idea how it’s supposed to feel when you finish hard run, but I always hear stuff about burning muscles and heavy breathing and such. Supposed to be fulfilling to be so exhausted.

No thanks, I’m good without that.

But I’ll enjoy this feeling.

After running across a whole city, I slow to a stop outside Mercy Memorial Hospital and let the power recede from me once I do. What’s left is a gentle ache, like I jogged across campus to get to class on time and am ready for a couple minutes sitting down to rest.

I stretch my arms and check my phone. Thirty-eight minutes, including all the times I had to slow down and refocus myself in order to keep my pace. Will was REALLY good with that estimate.

As I walk toward the entrance, I pull my bag around to my side and go to open it for Momo to climb inside. Before I can comment on hiding, I see my mentor standing next to a brown sedan in the parking lot. He waves toward my bag and shakes his head, so I jog the last dozen feet up to him.

:proftalk: “Don’t bother with the bag, I’m going to need Momo out for this.”

She perks up over my shoulder and croons.

:momotalk: “You need me~?”

:miatalk: “You need her?”

My doubt must have been apparent in my voice, since I was lightly bopped on the ear with a tiny paw.

:proftalk: “Strange as it sounds, yes. This will be much easier with Momo out and around in her full form. If you would?”

The last bit is addressed to Momo, who blurs down my back and is suddenly standing behind me, hands on my shoulders and her chin on my shoulder, grinning. I choose not to comment on having definitely felt a hand on my ass AND my upper thigh right there.

:momotalk: “What do I need to do?”

:proftalk: “Just stand there.”

He checks his watch and nods, before raising one hand up into the air and swirling it in a small circle. I can sorta see a greyness around it for a second, in a weird way. Like he was grabbing thin gauze from nowhere. A second later a weird soft and cold sensation settles over me, like I’d been draped with something invisible.

:proftalk: “Conveniently, that should work even better this way. And here’s our appointment. Be polite please.”

Will’s head turns to look out toward the parking lot, and I glance in that direction looking for an approaching person or car.

Instead a point of blue appears in the air, and the temperature around us drops significantly in an instant. My breath comes out in a plume as I gasp at the sight of the world seeming to twist open, like the gap was always there and I’m only just seeing it from the proper angle. It’s a portal, the smoothest I’ve seen so far.

The opening is pitch black, bitter cold. A few snowflakes blow out through the opening before a woman walks through.

It takes me a moment to process, since up to this point all the spirits I’ve seen have been pretty inhuman looking.

At a glance, this strangely-clad woman looks human.

She’s shorter than me, petite, with a very slim body. Her white kimono and it’s black trim are offset by a strangely out of place yellow coat, from which her long black hair is visible where it peeks out of the hood. What glimpse I can catch of her skin is brilliantly pale, ghostly almost.

It’s a moment into staring into that barely visible face that details begin to click. She’s way too pale, too pristine, and despite looking straight at I can’t tell how old she is.

When her pale blue eyes finally turn to meet my gaze, I stare into them and know for sure. The cold inhuman stare of someone alien to this world. She’s a spirit.

Will inclines his head to her.

:proftalk: “Good day, Lady Yerin.”

She smiles and nods. There’s no warmth in that barely seen smile. The portal snaps shut behind her, but the air temperature only warms slightly. The woman’s presence is radiating that chill.

Will motions toward us.

:proftalk: “May I introduce my latest apprentice, Amelia Rhodes, and her pact companion Tamamo no Mae.”

As he says this, I notice that Momo is no longer hanging off me, but standing almost formally with her hands crossed in front of her. Her expression is calm. Weird.

Will looks toward me and motions toward the woman.

:proftalk: “I introduce to you Lady Yerin of the Winter Halls.”

I try for a sort of nodding bow thing. This feels weirdly formal but I try to take Will’s example here.

:miatalk: “Um, good afternoon Lady Yerin. It’s nice to meet you.”

There’s a long pause as she regards me, before answering.

“Likewise, Miss Rhodes. Has your master told you why I am here today?”

Her voice is silk over a razor, cold and calm. It kinda intimidates me.

Actually no it really intimidates me. She feels dangerous.

:proftalk: “I have not. Would you care to tell her?”

She looks calmly at Will, then turns back to me.

“Today I have come to end a life.”
No. 1050487 ID: 9a2966

Blink at what you heard, then blurt out "Oh wow. Who? How? Are you sure?"

Then slowly cover up your big mouth as you blush and apologize for the outburst, while wondering whether taking up yoga will be enough keep you from descending into these sorts of abrupt reactions.
No. 1050490 ID: e5709d

Ignore the urge to rip your shirt open and beg her to stab you in the boob.
No. 1050497 ID: 90c451

For what purpose? I mean surely she must have a very good reason for wanting to take a life given the numerous complications that would cause.

Try your best not to give in to any urges. Because we're unbalanced we need to be extra diligent to make sure we don't give into our impulses. If it helps, instead of imagining some sort of curvaceous porcelain body, imagine she's just made out of ice, or is just a pale corpse. See? Totally a mood-killer.
No. 1050498 ID: 708905

Might I ask who and why?
No. 1050562 ID: 8483cf

"So what's keeping you, then?"
No. 1050565 ID: 663c95

Is that why we're in front of the hospital, then?
No. 1050571 ID: a2d88b

Ooh, very good question. Seconding this.
No. 1050574 ID: 83fb9f

Surely they deserve this, I would imagine.

Delete post []
Report post