Part 15: Aries, Libra, Capricorn, Scorpio, Virgo, and CancerBonding Update VIII Aries, Libra, Capricorn, Scorpio, Virgo, and Cancer
Finally, time to get this done. Were going to speed through the second Bonding Level 2 events and then tackle a second Star Offering. Hopefully that will trigger some new plot or the introduction of the 13th Maiden or something of interest.
Arie starts us off.
~Star God Academy Church~
(Huh I guess Aries not here today. Thats Oh, wait, there she is. Hang on did she just come out of that forbidden room?)
*Arie very quickly runs up to Itsuki*
H-Hello. Did you need something today?
Not particularly I just came to see you Hey, isnt that the forbidden room that you just walked out of?
I thought you said there was some kind of evil sealed away inside.
Does that mean you managed to pry it open?
You told me it was rusted shut and couldnt be opened.
But it was very dirty inside, so I was cleaning it.
Um, Arie? Why are you being so panicky?
She really is. Normally when the Star Maidens change poses in these 3D modeled scenes, there is a slow and gentle flow to their movement. However, when Arie changes poses in the lead up to the line Th-Thats right! the shift is quick and sharp.
Whats in the room, Arie?
I-I am not panicking!
If you say so. Anyway Since the room is open now, maybe I can have a look.
I want to see what this unspeakable evil thing you mentioned is.
Y-You may not, Itsuki!
Ah! H-Hey! Wh
*The screen goes black at this point*
You mustnt look inside that room!
I said no!
(What do I do?! WhatHands! Hands are free! Not touching anything! Not moving them!)
Arie youre suffocating me
Please. Just not this room Please, spare me
This room cant be seen by anyone.
O-Okay I give I give!
Oh I-Im sorry I dont know what got into me. Itsuki, Im ashamed of hurting you.
Im Im good I think Just have to remember the Classmating exercises I came up with
Damn. So close. You should have just gone for it, Itsuki. No words, just boom, straight dash to the room.
Im really sorry, Itsuki.
Youre not the only one.
You too? What do you mean?
Uh, its nothing. Dont mind me. But thats the first time Ive seen you get that flustered. Whats the deal?
I-Im sorry. I try my best to remain calm at all times
Is whats in that room really such a big secret?
I see Well, Im sorry for trying to pry into your private life. I may have gotten a little too curious.
I still dont have enough courage to show you inside the room.
I may be able to gather the courage to do so
Kink dungeon. Its gotta be. Its clearly a guilty pleasure (judging by her comment when she exits the room and thinks shes alone). Shes training as a nun to try and overcome it or purge herself of it or something. Its also something that she doesnt want anyone to know, yet is willing to share with Itsuki if the two of them build a closer relationship with each other.
Now that Im fairly confident about Arie, its time I shift my attention back to figuring out what the hell is going on with Faruns backstory.
Oh, right. We need to get through Mirei before that.
Looks like shes not here Hm? Whats with all those letters sitting in the trash?
*Mirei wanders onto the scene*
Whew Oh, Itsuki. Youre here?
Oh, yeah. I just got here. You look pretty refreshed. What were you doing?
I went out for the first time in a while and enjoyed myself.
Really? Thats kind of surprising. I thought you only cared about research.
This is different. Research may be the only thing I look forward to in life But refreshing myself every now and then helps with my research.
Okay, so where did you go then?
Do you want to know? Try to guess. The hint is that it felt quite nice.
It felt nice? So like a massage or something?
Untrue. I have no experience with massages. Is it supposed to feel good when they rub your body?
From what I know, yeah. Its supposed to feel really good when youre feeling tired.
Where are you going to rub? You can do it anywhere you want. Try to make me feel relaxed. Go ahead.
Me? I dont know how to properly give massages. Im not a therapist.
Oh, is that so? Hm Then if it really feels good I should consider developing a plant with Star Energy that can massage me.
A plant? How the hell is a magic plant supposed to Oh I see your game, Conception Plus. Good thing Mana isnt here.
So if you werent gone for a massage, then where were you?
This part is actually sort of weird. Mireis profile already reveals that she loves baths. Based on context, and the fact that she feels really refreshed, its safe to say that that is where she was just now. So all the mystery is sort of gone from this event if you bother to go check Mireis profile at any point between the start of the game and now. Youd think that section of her profile would pop up after we discovered what she was up to. Maybe thats a red herring?
What is with everyone and having secret places that they wont tell me about?
Eheheh, dont sulk, Itsuki.
Still, its weird seeing you this happy. Outside of that medicine you were working on, I dont think Ive ever seen you genuinely laugh. I mean in a non-creepy way.
I feel good right now thanks to having gotten so refreshed. If theres something you want from me, now would be the time to ask.
Really? Then could you maybe try smiling a little more often?
Thats the best option. The other two options were Stop your research on me (which Im betting is the worst one seeing as how research is everything to Mirei) and Let me kiss you (which Im betting is the neutral answer because Mirei would probably find that uninspired and a boring typical horny teenager thing).
Heheh, what is with that request? Youre so strange.
I dont know, you just seem a lot happier when youre smiling. That makes me feel more relaxed.
Eheheh. You really have no greed at all. Its true that laughing makes you happier. At the very least, Ill try to laugh more around you.
Great. I really liked seeing this side of you, Mirei.
Heheh. I enjoyed it too. Chatting with you is a nice change of pace. Im going to compile the data Ive obtained up till now.
See you later.
The fuck was that? That doesnt sound like the Mirei we know. Did she get replaced with a body snatcher that was somehow unable to match her cold logical personality? Weird
Oh! Hey, hey! If it isnt, Itsuki! Have a seat. Wanna drink? How bout some water?
You seem pretty pumped up today.
Hehe. Does it seem that way? Well Hm? Oh, my work? There arent that many customers today.
This is another weird transition. I didnt leave anything out there. Official Itsuki just says You seem real happy today and then Farun blurts out everything you see above.
You really just do what you want, huh?
I sure do. I have permission from the bar owner, so its all right. Well, the reason Im so happy is Hehehe. I talked to this really good lookin boy at the academy today! Hes the popular kid! I didnt know those kinda people actually existed! Well Hehe
What the fuck is going on in this update?! First Mirei is legitimately happy and friendly, now Farun is here getting all giddy over the fact that some dude called her beautiful despite making it clear that she can easily brush off comments like that.
Huh? I didnt say somethin wrong, did I?
Uh not really. I was just I was thinking that you have pretty typical tastes, thats all.
Should I not? What girl wouldnt like bein complimented by a good-lookin boy? Hm? You thinkin bout if you were the one who complimented me? Hmm?
I can tell how serious ya are, always goin to the labyrinths an stuff.
Is Farun drunk or something? Its not me, right? Like, I havent gone crazy. The Maidens are starting to get really weird.
I knew ya were upstandin, but that also told me that we aint compatible. You know how happy-go-lucky I am. Hehe.
I dont think Im that serious of a guy. I just had to start taking things seriously because of what I got dragged into.
Ahaha. There ya go puttin on a front again.
Im not putting up a front. When I first got here I thought this would be a fun adventure and I could be a cool badass hero. But then all this stuff got dumped on my shoulders, and I had everyone telling me that the fate of this entire world is riding on me, and I have to keep juggling a bunch of modes of my own because I need to form bonds with twelve people that have completely different personalities I have a lot of very important things to handle.
Thats what I mean by bein uptight. Id just run away if I were you.
This isnt something that I can run from, Farun. I want to get back to my own world.
But youre still workin so hard. An yet, youre so
Youre working hard too, arent you? Youve done a lot to help me out.
Well, same goes for me. Thats why I need to do what I can.
I also promised to get Mahiru back home, so I cant just stop.
Right Mahiru Now Im jealous W-Wait! Forget I said that! Ahaha!
Farun, whats going on with you? Youve been acting really strange. Plus, you keep staring at my face.
A-Ahaha! Th-This is just so weird. Im sure sayin some funny things today!
No arguments here.
A-All right! Next topic! How bout we talk bout economics?
Please dont. I changed majors to get away from that stuff.
W-Wait I cant look ya in the eyes
I dont think I can talk to ya normally right now
Is something wrong?
B-Be quiet! I-I just happened to be like this today! Wait till tomorrow an Ill be back to normal! Just ya see!
Its the first week of August, there shouldnt be a full moon, so what the hell has gotten into Farun?
Okay well I guess Ill check in with you tomorrow then. Oh, and um I mean Whoever that guy was, Id say he was right about you being beautiful.
Wha ?! Wh-Wh-What are ya talkin bout?! Th-That was outta nowhere Wh-Why would ya say that?!
Thats a good question, actually.
Ill be honest. I was curious to see how you would react to that.
D-Dont tease a woman older than ya! Jerk! Th-Thats just too sudden for me! Um
Got it, leaving right away.
Youre such a jerk Whew Im burnin up I wonder when hell come by again. I wanted to chat a bit more Itsuki please visit again soon
What the Christ was that? Did Farun get possessed? Am I having a fever dream or something?
~Star God Academy Clinic~
Well, at least well have some time away from Farun to hopefully let her work through whatever the hell is going on with her right now.
I was just about to call for you.
Really? Whys that?
I told you my duty is to watch over your health.
What would you even do about it if he did? Does your magic stethoscope fix scarring?
Do I really have to get another check-up so soon?
Why do you look so annoyed by it? I always treat you gently Theres no one else I give such special treatment. I dont think theres anything you should be dissatisfied about.
Im not really dissatisfied. I just dont see the need to get a check-up so frequently. If Im feeling off or something happened, Ill let you know. Outside of that, isnt a check-up a once a year sort of thing?
No. If you let your guard down, it could be too late!
Why are you getting so worked up about this?
Hes not your brother Reone. Get over it. Your arc is getting progressively creepier the more you harp on this.
Anyway, please let me perform a check-up on you. I dont want to be lazy about this.
*sigh* Okay, okay. Sorry for being cranky about it. I know youre doing it because you care.
Its all right. Im glad you understand. As your reward should I undress you? You can just stand there and let me take care of things.
This is the worst choice by the way, but I really do not want to be encouraging this shit. We know Reone is having difficulty separating Itsuki from her deceased brother. She was clearly self-conscious about it during Classmating and yet here she is trying to be seductive and teasing by undressing Itsuki with her own hands.
Dont get me wrong, I dont mind seductive or teasing characters. This stuff was sort of amusing in the early part of the game/her arc. But knowing what we know now changes the dynamic and makes it increasingly uncomfortable.
Its okay to let me spoil you sometimes, you know.
Sorry, but I dont want things to get out of hand.
Youre so stoic But thats no fun at all.
With how insistent youre being about this, Im starting to think that I should just go along with it.
Thats right. You should accept peoples goodwill. Here goes. Im going to undress you now. Be sure to stay still, all right?
H-Hey! I didnt say that I was agreeing!
*Yeah, thats right. Reone does it no matter what you choose. Go figure*
You really do have beautiful collarbones. I cant help but stare. May I touch them? I know it has nothing to do with the check-up, but
Uhh I guess? Why are you so fixated on them anyway?
And this is why its creepy, Reone.
In the past, my brother examined me just like this.
I had no shortage of wounds from all those street fights. For every little injury, hed patch me up. It was actually my brother who wanted to become a doctor, not me.
Okay, thats slightly more understandable. I will heavily presume that your brother was more professional about this than you, though.
I was a bad sister fighting in the streets just to earn money for food each day. I was desperate to help my brother attain his dream of becoming a doctor
Oh, I see So what happened to your parents then?
I dont know who they are. My first memory is of my brother and I having been abandoned in the slums. It may sound strange coming from me, but we had a hard life.
So thats what it is Sorry.
Dont worry about it. Im sorry for making you listen. That ends the check-up for today. You can get dressed now. Or should I help you get dressed?
Nope. Im good. Thats my final answer.
Your body is fine. The health check-up ended with no issues this time. But that doesnt mean you should let your guard down. What youre doing now is much harsher than what I did all those years ago. I hope you understand that.
I still think you worry too much.
You didnt have to say it like that Its a given for me to worry about you as your doctor, no? Now that I think about it my brother also told me I worried too much *sigh*
Um Well, I better head back now that the exam is done with.
Oh, right. I shouldnt hold you back too long. I hope you dont find these examinations too annoying. Do come back again soon. While I cant join you in the labyrinths I can treat your wounds, be a love counselor, or anything in-between. I will protect the town outside the labyrinth so you have a safe place to live.
Right. Ill be counting on you.
Haha If any unscrupulous people go after you, Ill be sure to purge them. I just want you to be happy.
I will look after you until the day you return to your world. See you later then.
This update is going a lot weirder than I would have expected. Just to give a peek behind the curtain, Im only truly seeing these bonding events as I type the update. In order to collect all of them in one convenient batch, I fast forward through them when they first happen and then go into the database to record them once all 12 Maidens have their next level of events unlocked. I get the gist of what happens in the events from speed-reading, but I only get the detailed dialogue once I go back to the database.
~Star God Academy Field~
Im hungry I should get something at the cafeteria.
Anyway, just a reminder that I dont have a lot of advanced warning for weirdness like were seeing here. Also, that was literally the only line for this location. Were straight off to the Cafeteria. Weve moved on to Mahirus event now.
~Star God Academy Cafeteria~
Damn its closed. I wonder if Mahiru already left.
Im still here.
*Mahiru wanders into the scene*
Oh, good. I thought I missed you.
Were you planning on eating here?
Well, I was I guess Ill have to try and find something on the way back to the inn.
Official Itsuki says that hell just have to go home and eat some instant noodles. Once again, I want to remind everyone that we are in a magic fantasy world which seems to have a predominantly European Renaissance/Industrial Revolution era of architecture and supposedly a culture built on magical progress rather than technological progress.
But apparently you can still grab some readily available Top Ramen from the nearest market.
Hm? Hey, Mahiru whats in that box?
Oh, this? I-Its nothing.
Really? Because I get the feeling that its a very delicious nothing Like maybe those Nonsweet Sweets that the pastry chef made
Unfortunately, thats where youre wrong.
Then whats in there?
Oh. Well then let me grab a piece of that.
But you know my cooking is
You did taste it, didnt you?
Of course I did. Im not in grade school anymore.
Then whats the big deal? Its fine, right?
Well Its still in the trial stage Its not up to par yet
Why are you getting so embarrassed about it? You know me.
Dont force yourself Its my fault that terrible thing happened to you, Itsuki. You almost died because of my cooking! Theres no way youd want to eat anything I make
*sigh* Mahiru, why are you so hung up on that? It was an accident. Remember? It was food poisoning from the seafood that sent me to the hospital.
But its my fault.
So youre still afraid of people eating what you make?
Yes, I am
I keep telling you that its in the past. You cant let that hold you back forever.
No but. It was an accident, it happened a long time ago, and Im fine now. Look! Im here in a different world fighting monsters and running around dungeons. Reone is constantly giving me check-ups and she always says that Im perfectly fine.
You wanted to get better at cooking, right? I want to support that. The stuff you make might wind up on the cafeteria menu some day, right? People are going to eat it eventually. Come on, just let me try some. Im hungry.
Im sorry, by the way. I didnt know that you were so traumatized by that.
Its not your fault, Itsuki. I should be the one apologizing.
Sooo . can I have some of that cake now?
Sure Lets eat it together. Oh, and I know you dont like stuff thats too sweet. So I had the pastry chef teach me how to make that Nonsweet cake.
So you made this just for me, then?
You become more motivated when youre making it for someone specific. But once I started, I couldnt bring myself to give it to you.
Dont beat yourself up, Mahiru. Youre suffering from a half-assed developer induced personality change.
I was going to bring it home to eat it myself.
Now that I think about it, you never made anything else for me after that incident happened.
I was too scared to. But Ive thought otherwise after coming to this world. Everyone has their own problems, but theyre living life to the fullest. I knew I couldnt stay the way I was
Youve really matured since coming here, you know that?
Really? I hope so.
Id like to believe Ive changed, too. What do you think?
Well I think you do look a bit cooler than before.
Only a bit? Youre being about as sweet as your Nonsweet cake.
Anyway, Im really hungry now.
Then shall we eat? Hold on, let me get a fork. I only have one though. Thats okay, right?
Sure. As long as you dont mind this being some weird indirect kiss event.
Dont call it an event!
*We then get another fade to black moment that I heavily presume indicates another cut Mahiru scene, because there doesnt appear to be a time skip*
Are you not going to take it out of the box?
Setting aside how it tastes, it doesnt look good, so I dont want to show it. Say ah.
So now youre doing a Say ah event as well?
Official Itsuki actually does refer to both this and the indirect kiss thing as events, like hes drawing a parallel to video games or visual novels. It matches my characterisation of Itsuki, but I bring it up because Official Itsuki actually hasnt made any video game references since the very first scene of the game (where hes talking with Mahiru on the school roof back on Earth). They probably dropped it after the opening scene in order to keep him as blank a slate as possible.
Come on! Say ah!
*Itsuki has some of the cake and doesnt keel over immediately*
Its not bad. Tastes exactly like something you would make.
What does that mean? Like its bad?
I didnt say that. Its more like nostalgic.
I made you curry 10 years ago. Its the first time Ive made any dessert.
Maybe its just the Konatsuki family style.
Konatsuki family Once we go back to Sora, I want to have Moms curry again. Say, Itsuki What do we do if we cant go back?
Dont think about it like that. I promised you we would get back, didnt I?
But if we cant
Why not do it regardless of what happens? Ill be there to taste it either way, right?
Despite how much the cousin thing bothers me about the Itsuki-Mahiru route, I do enjoy typing out these events. Itsuki and Mahiru have a comfortable history, so their back and forth tends to work better than with the other Maidens. Its just a shame that we know this route will end with them hooking up despite being blood related. Too bad it doesnt stay as a friendship.
Oh well. What are you gonna do? Well deal with that when/if the thread decides to declare Mahiru the Ending Winner. For now, lets keep looking to the immediate future. Right now, the immediate future is Ruka and her unique CG.
~Star God Academy Classroom~
Hey, Ruka. Are there any club activities happening today?
I was just about to go on my patrol. Do you want to come with me?
I am a member, arent I? Plus, I did promise to help you. So lets get a move on.
Seems like youre plenty motivated. Here, wear this.
A sash? Why does it say Im Gods Gift!?
Youd just look like any other student otherwise.
I guess ? Except the uniform hes wearing is a completely different colour and has a totally different emblem than the Star God Academy which is also in a different place. But sure, other than those things, he looks just like any other student here.
That said, having a sash sounds pretty sweet. Im disappointed that its not a costume option for Itsuki in the dungeons.
As I said, I want people to know when Gods Gift is on patrol.
Will this really be effective?
I dont know. Its the first time Im patrolling with you. If you dont want to wear it, then dont. It sounds like youre not serious about this anyway.
I didnt say that. I think a sash is cool. It looks handmade, too. Did you do it?
Huh? I did. Why? Oh But its not for you to keep.
You should know this already, but its specifically for the patrol.
Youre really into this, huh?
Of course I am. If I dont show my motivation now, when am I going to? It may be a little flashy, but I think it will be effective.
You went through the trouble of making it for me, so I dont mind wearing it. Plus, I think its kind of cool. Makes me look official. I was kind of bummed out that I didnt get some kind of hero armor or uniform.
I-I see Lets go on patrol now. Itll be our first time together doing it.
Maiden Club on patrol! All you jackasses at the Academy are officially on notice!
~Star God Academy Field~
The academy is quite large, so patrolling the whole area is tough.
Have you gone on any patrols by yourself?
I do whenever I come to the academy. But everything is so peaceful.
Im beginning to regret dragging them into this. Everyone is so busy with their own stuff after all.
They decided to help, didnt they? I think youre just being a little overly considerate of other peoples feelings.
Thats how Tsukuyomi are. I get sensitive about it because we know when people are lying. Lets make our rounds at the cafeteria and call it a day.
~Star God Academy Cafeteria~
Wh-Whats going on ? And were a couple ?
[Cafeteria Worker]: Now right this way. Well bring you the commemorative parfait straight out.
H-Hey Were not a couple! Why arent you denying it?!
Just roll with it. Its free food after all. Dont let it bother you so much.
O-Of course itll bother me Now we just look like were a couple hanging around the academy.
Didnt we decide on just Maiden Club?
So then you dont want any free parfaits?
Ugh I-Ill eat it If I dont eat it now, itll just ruin the cafeterias celebratory mood. B-But just so you know Eating my fill of parfait hasnt been a lifelong dream or anything.
Oh, then thats a bonus. We get free food and you get to have a dream come true.
I didnt say that! Lets just eat this giant parfait and go home.
*20 seconds pass and Grumpy Ruka becomes *
Mmm This is good. Whats with this fresh cream? It just melts in my mouth. I cant stop eating
Thats great and all but do you think that I could have some?
Oh, fine. Just a bite. Say ahh
(This is a weird week. But, whatever. Not going to complain about free food.)
Ahh Oh man, thats good.
Right? Oh, dont take the cherry. Im saving it for last.
And now for the inevitable regret of scarfing down a ton of ice cream.
~Star God Academy Classroom~
Ugh I overate. I dont think I have room for dinner
Well you did kind of force yourself to eat every last bit of it.
Wh-Whats so wrong with that? This was like a celebration of the clubs formation.
This academy really is problem-free How could she have lost her shoes here ?
I kind of figured theyd pull this. If its not bullying, then what is it? Does barefoot girl just not like shoes? Is she deliberately trying to make herself look poor/neglected in order to earn sympathy from someone in the hopes they will adopt her?
Sorry. Thats way too cynical, even for me.
Maybe we can find some clues if we keep doing the patrols.
Right. Ill continue this club until she gets adopted. I have to work hard until then at the very least. I have to prepare for dinner, so I need to go now. Im short on my allowance, but I want to buy some cake for the kids. I shouldnt be the only one who gets some enjoyment today.
Okay. Ill make sure to call out to you if I see you around the campus. We can keep each other updated in between patrols.
You really dont need to call out to me B-But, I hope you come to the club meetings.
Well, meeting adjourned for todays After Hours Maiden Club.
You got it, Club President Ruka.
I keep telling you to stop calling me that
A little rocky at the start, but Ruka manages to wrap up this series of Focus Bonding Events in a heartwarming way. Lets see if the Non-Focus Maidens can manage to ruin that.