The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

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Beeronious
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The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

Post by Beeronious » Mon Jun 03, 2019 11:19 pm

Well since everybody else is being cool and posting their one shots I'd join in with my only one. Just a little diddy I wrote for the Valentines Day competition on the KS Discord. Hope you guys enjoy it in all its saccharine sappiness.

The Ritual Beneath the Stars

Melt 125g of calcified oil of the earth.

The mixture must be perfect. This is the most important ritual I have ever performed so far. So many of the girls at Yamaku scorn my magical gifts. And yet they are happy to partake in this same ritual. Do they understand its significance? They are happy to buy the offerings and play along. They think it's a means to an end. All to satisfy their filthy loins.

Sift 125g of the cane's gift, 6 tablespoons of the egg of cacao, 4 tablespoons of the powdered life essence of a cow and a pinch of crystalline earth into a bowl.

I remember the day I met him as if it was only yesterday. The day of the Yamaku festival. I still had some time until Keiko finished her shift at our class' booth. He was walking amongst the crowd without purpose. He was merely body without a spirit. I could see the spark of power within him. His spirit only needed the kiss of life to awaken.

I can feel my cheeks heat up at the idea of such a kiss. No! A witch's purpose must be pure!

Normally I find it hard to talk to people. The high tongue is often difficult for Gaian's to understand. Nonetheless, I approached him.

"The new body walks without purpose of spirit. Is it lost in its own maelstrom?"

The boy turned towards me. His eyes were tired, the spirits he was carrying weighed down on his shoulders. I had to admit, he was quite handsome.

"What are you? Some kind of fortune teller? I don't have much money on me at the moment."

He mistook me for a mere fortune teller? I guess the black mantle that I wear over my school uniform could cause such an error.. I forgave him for this transgression.

"No. I am merely one of the gifted whom is seeking some company today. You seem like you would be good company."

It would have done no good to make him think I was reaching out to him in pity. There is enough pity to go around in this place. It is a lie, but a pretty lie.

"Well it beats sitting in my neighbour's pillow fort. I'm Hisao Nakai, by the way."

"My name is Aoi Shinohara. And I look forward to seeing your life story unfold."

Pour the melted oil of the earth into the mixture.

I held the schipperke plush doll close to my chest and looked to my partner. My new familiar was a fine addition. Keiko had retired for the evening to study. I looked to Hisao. He seemed slightly less dejected than he did earlier in the day. I guess he also enjoyed pretending to be one of the mundanes.

The rooftop was a fine place to spend the evening. I usually feel my powers grow when I am closer to the stars. And when my powers grow, so does my courage.

"Hisao, if you could have magical powers, what would you do with them?"

He looked at me, the pained expression on his face made my heart ache.

"To go back to normal. I would wish myself to not broken."

I put a hand on his slumped shoulders.

"I wish magic worked that way. Everything has its limits. Although I could help you put yourself back together."

He looked at me with a sceptical expression.

"I don't think you could do that. I am beyond repair."

The first step is to doubt. It is normal to doubt. I snuck a glance at my watch. It was nearly the apex of the star's energy at night. I knew I could do this.

"You doubt my power. That is fine."

I held my hand in the air a silently petitioned the spirits of the sky. In seconds, my pleas were answered. The sky lit up with noise and colour. A demonstration of my power. I looked at his awe struck face.

"You are not alone Hisao. For whatever reason you are here, there are those who would pity you, doubt your capability and leave you alone when it is no longer convenient."

I found it hard to hear my voice beneath the heaven's roar. I held my hand out towards him, amused at his startled face.

“And there are those who will accept you as you are. Those who will never abandon you, or leave you to be alone.”

Pour the mixture into the prescribed moulds for the ritual and flatten with a spatula.

"Aoi. Before we begin, there's something I need to show you."

It had been a cycle of the moon since the festival and I have felt my soul become closer to Hisao's. When he confided in me that the magister of health had been pressuring him to exercise, I invited him to join me in my morning ritual of recharging my liquid mana. We were standing by the side of the pool. I was in the standard school swimsuit. He was dressed in board shorts and a white t-shirt. Whatever he had to show me clearly made him extremely uncomfortable.

"What is it Hisao?"

It was then that he removed his shirt. On his (rather nice) bare chest was a thin red scar. The traumatic branding of whatever spirits had sentenced him to this school.

"I have…”

He hesitated. He took in a long breath and exhaled slowly. He was realigning his magical circuits and allowing him to focus his spirit.

“I have a heart condition, It's called Arrhythmia. I had my first heart attack in February. They rushed me to hospital and opened up my chest to operate on me. Which left this scar."

His hand ran awkwardly down the scar. Obviously he was extremely self conscious of the red mark that marred his chest. We have never broached the topic of why either of us were at Yamaku. I remember what the keeper of knowledge once told me when I was new. That our disabilities were only an issue if we felt that way.

"I have Aplastic Anemia. That is the price I pay for my power."

Hisao smiled at my confession. It was getting more and more common to see him smile. Each time he did, I felt his aura touch mine, its energy causing my heart to flutter ever so slightly. It was an uncomfortable, but welcome sensation.

"Anyway Aoi. It's time to go swimming."

Allow the offering to cool until set.

---

It was still dark outside. The mystical light of the stars energized my heart and solidified my purpose. Today was the day that had been foretold. The day of the ritual of bonding. I look at the clock on my side table, it read 5:30. I needed to deposit this summons and return to prepare for my morning ritual with Hisao.

Lady Night’s blanket of darkness protects me from the sentries as I make my way to the citadel of education. Fortunately, the cleaning golems had arrived to perform their labours and the main doors were unlocked.

I slip my way up to the third floor unnoticed and quickly find Hisao’s classroom. Slipping inside I find his desk, second row, by the window. I open the desk top lid and deposit the summons for this evening. As I close the lid, I find my hand resting on its top. I picture him sitting there, furiously studying, taking down notes or listening to a lecture. I feel my cheeks warm as I absorb the lingering energy of the obvious psychic memory.

---

“So you’re finally going to do it?”

Keiko looks at me with apparent shock. She is one of the few people welcome in my personal domain. Although normally far more polite, this afternoon after dinner she decided to crash in my sanctum with this question.

“What is it you’re talking about?”

“Hisao told me he got a note from somebody to meet him on the roof tonight. TONIGHT! ON VALENTINES DAY!”

Keiko suddenly lunges at me and wraps me in a tight embrace.

“I’m so proud of you Aoi. I never knew you were such a romantic.”

I pry my confidant off of me and straighten out my mantle. Her enthusiasm is pleasant, but I can’t help feeling a little embarrassed at her attention.

“So. Have you decided what you’re going to wear? What you’re going to say?”

I was going to wear what I am wearing now. My school uniform and my black mantle. When I propose the bonding of souls, I wish to stand before him as I am. No more, no less. I wish for him to accept the ritual. I wish for him to accept me, as I am.

“I was going to go like this.”

Keiko folds her arms in a huff.

“Unacceptable. I would not call myself your best friend if I let you confess to a boy like this. We need to dress you up, do your hair, some makeup.”

What? No! I am not some commonplace hussy. I am not selling body on the streets for a piece of silver.

“I am going as I am. He must accept me as I am.”

Keiko relaxes at my response. A small smile forming on her face.

“You’re right. He should accept you as you are.”

She folds her arms defiantly.

“But! I am at least brushing your hair and doing your makeup. This is not up for negotiation!”

As long as she doesn't try braiding my hair again.

---

I always loved the citadel’s rooftop at night. The stars feel like they are almost within reach. I feel like I would reach up and scoop them in my hands. The late hour has blanketed the roof in a relative silence, broken only by the occasional girlish giggle in the distance. It seems other have had their rituals accepted.

The makeup on my face feels like a kabuki mask, despite Keiko insisting it was only a light touch up. I feel hesitant to touch my face unless I smear it and end up looking like some ghastly undead servant.

The small box I hold behind my back feels heavier with every passing second. I hear the evil spirits whisper their doubts in my ears. What if he doesn’t show up? What if he rejects you? What if he laughs in your face? There are so many better girls for him. He can do better than you. You’re just a pathetic sick girl. You’re just a child. You’re worthless. He can do better. You’re pathetic.

I can feel my hands shivering, and the contents of the box rattling behind me. My hands feel wet with a cold sweat. My muscles tighten. I can feel my heart beating harder.

The sudden squeak of the door as it opens causes me to jump. The figure in the doorway steps forward. I recognise the tall frame, the small tuft of hair sticking up on the top of his head.

“Aoi. You wanted to see me?”

His voice rings with doubts. Was my message to cryptic? He is here after all, so he must understand. I take a calming breath and step forward. There is no turning back. I look directly into his eyes, into his soul. He must know that I mean every word I say.

“My apprentice. I shall make a request to you. A request which you are open to refuse should you wish. Since I bore witness to you on the day of the festival, I have known you to have a unique aura. Since we have been in each other’s presence, I find you to be special. You are a unique soul.

You are a soul that I wish to bond with. I wish to share my aura with you and yours with me.”

I step forward and reveal the box in my hands, holding it towards him. My palms feeling even more wet. My arms feel like cement blocks. Aoi. You can do this.

“The ritual is simple. All you need to do is consume these offerings at your leisure. And to think of me when you do so.”

At my request his face turns pale. The inquisitive, if somewhat confused expression on his face turns to one of fear. Not of nervousness, but a primal fear for his own life. His right hand moves up his torso and his palm ends up on the left side of his chest. A moment later, he relaxes. His expression changes from fear into the warmest smile I have seen on his face.

“Aoi Shinohara I gladly accept your request. I could not be happier to partake in it.”

With this response, Hisao steps forward and wraps his arms around me. I rest my cheek against his chest and can feel the beating of his heart. I cannot help myself from returning his embrace. The weight of the spirits’ taunts feel like they are literally melting away.

I am not sure which of us say it. But I know both our hearts feel these words.

“Thank you for not leaving me alone.”

Hanako Fancopter
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Re: The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Jun 04, 2019 1:56 am

Yes you did do a chuunibyo Aoi story! I feel bad that I forgot about this one. It's easily my favorite take on the character, which isn't saying much considerably she barely qualifies as a character, but that's also why I like it so much. You made a character that is truly your own original creation, with a very unique angle.
An Unusual Friendship (Misha x Hanako Route)
Riposte (Rika Mini-Route)
One-Shots Thread (Random Smut/Meme Stories)

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brythain
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Re: The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

Post by brythain » Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:22 am

Aha, a brand-new take on Aoi and Keiko. Fascinating!
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
Main Index (Complete)Shizune/Lilly/Emi/Hanako/Rin/Misha + Miki + Natsume
Secondary Arcs: Rika/Mutou/AkiraHideaki | Others (WIP): Straw—A Dream of SuzuSakura—The Kenji Saga.
"Much has been lost, and there is much left to lose." — Tim Powers, The Drawing of the Dark (1979)

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Mirage_GSM
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Re: The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:25 am

In this case it's more Kounibyou :lol:
Jokes aside, I really enjoyed this one. It's certainly not like anything I've seen before - both in using Aoi and in her... quirk.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
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Oddball
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Re: The Ritual Beneath The Stars [One Shot]

Post by Oddball » Tue Jun 04, 2019 8:27 pm

It's certainly original.
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