A/N: *Somewhere in the studio, a meeting is being held* "We need to have more detail in the one-shots!" "No, we need better plots!" "Lemons! There hasn't been enough lemons lately!" "What about characters? They need to be more diverse!" "Director, what do you think?" "Zzz...kanpai!" *Raises a fist in the air* "He's having the drinking dream again..." "Why do we even bother..." "Um, shouldn't we be making this whole series 'kid-friendly'?" *Everyone goes silent at the Censorship head's inquiry* "Hahahahaha!" *The whole room bursts into laughter, including Drake who is still asleep* "You really are a rookie, aren't you?" "Why would we make a kid-friendly series for a concept that's purely adult-rated!?" "That's the best joke I've ever heard!" *An hour later, on the set* Yawn, what did I miss? Not that it matters anyway. Welcome all to the epic conclusion of the Magnus Saga, the Kunoichi one-shot. The start of this exciting mini-series started in the Ryu chapter, so if you haven't read that, then why are you even here? Well, no time like the future I suppose. Let's dive right into ours and start reading, shall we?
“Achoo! Damn it...” I grumble in annoyance.
Why do I have to stand guard so far up along the mountains? There's nothing here but snow, harsh winds, and a high chance of death. I'm starting to regret my choice to repent peacefully if this is the first task that I'm given. Aside from shivering and occasionally sneezing, the only form of entertainment out here is some reading, but even then there aren't any interesting books that are kept here. Despite what my girlfriend claims about the villagers being 'devout' and whatnot, they sure like to keep a lot of porn magazines in this place; the worst part is that it's all about monster girls. I don't know how they kept this secret for so long, but I had my suspicions from the beginning when this village prided themselves on purely human traditions. Of course, since I'm bored, I decide to indulge a bit into the villagers' tastes.
“.........This sucks.” I finally comment after finding nothing interesting.
I enjoyed the quality of the pictures, but there's no real comparison to the real thing; especially since Kasumi is waiting for me at home. I close the magazine and let my mind wander for a bit, thinking back to my first night in this village. I chose to repay the village for all of the crimes I committed and met my girlfriend, who happens to be the person assigned to supervise me. I don't really mind living with her, but the stares that everyone gives me whenever I walk alone are quite hostile. I'm glad that this job doesn't require my girlfriend's presence, so I'm free to laze around as I please without much to interrupt me. Against my better judgment, I take out a different porn magazine from the stack and open it to a random page.
Before I can even see the first picture there, a dagger pierces the magazine and impales it to the floor, leaving my hands empty. I bolt up immediately from my seat only to feel my face hitting the floor and cold metal applying pressure against my neck. I flick my eyes to my attacker, spotting only purple cloth and a few more throwing daggers. Between the blade against my neck and my head incrementally sinking into the floor, there's really no way for me to escape this hold...if I was afraid to take risks. My career as a bandit forced me to take every risk possible to ensure success, and I won't fail to live up to that reputation. Without a second thought, I grab hold of the assassin's hand to keep the blade in place and force myself off the floor. By keeping the blade still, there's minimal chance of injury to me, and I stand up straight without a problem.
I look upon my opponent while still holding the hand against my neck and narrow my eyes at the sight. It's a Kunoichi, the famous female ninjas turned succubi, and she is no different from the stories I've heard. A sleeveless purple coat, long slender gloves with bracers, and equally-long stockings are all that cover her light-skinned body. And yet, following the Kunoichi code, her 'assets' are provided the bare-minimum of coverage as I can easily take note of her surprisingly voluminous chest. A tinge of color rushes to my cheeks, but thankfully it's cold up here, so it's nothing too noticeable. There's only one option available to me here, which is to fight off this Kunoichi and hopefully save my purity for Kasumi. I consider escaping outside, but a blizzard is raging at the moment, and I'm fairly certain that this woman will find me again somehow.
I throw her hand off my neck and hop back a few steps, easing into a balanced stance with my fists ready. I try to glare at her mysterious gray eyes, but I can't seem to find the will to do so. The emotion in her gray orbs is almost sad, as if she is a child who is having her first experience with death. I'm slowly losing my will to fight and now I am wanting to comfort this stranger more than anything. I shake my head free of such thoughts, reminding myself that I'm still in a dangerous situation no matter how harmless she appears. With renewed purpose, I take the first move and dash forward with a flashing punch. She sidesteps and counters with her own punch, earning a grunt from me as I feel the impact on my ribs. I follow through with my attack, slipping my left arm under my extended right and attempt to take her down by sweeping out her legs. She anticipates this, spinning mid-air to break my balance and sends me tumbling to the floor along with her.
My body thuds with a resounding crack against the hard floor and my vision starts to flicker, but I hold on through raw willpower. The Kunoichi sits on top of me and grabs onto my shirt in preparation for the inevitable 'assassination' that all members of her kind specialize in; except...it doesn't come. She lifts me up so that my face is level with hers before pulling down her face mask and lightly touching her forehead to mine. I pause in confusion and awkwardness as I just stare back at her eyes, which now give off a sense of fulfillment instead of pain. After a few long minutes of staring, I hear her speak in a quiet whisper-like voice.
“H-How do you know my name?” I shyly ask.
She points to herself and holds her tail close to our faces as she speaks.
“Tsukiko.” She shakes her tail lightly, causing a bell tied there to ring with a very familiar tone.
“It can't be...are you really that Tsukiko?” My memories prior to my capture are replaying in my mind, trying to verify this woman before me.
“The bell...” She rings the bell again, stronger this time with more feeling.
“I gave that bell to Tsukiko as a memento. Then that means you really are...” My eyes widen at the realization.
“3 years ago, we promised. I got stronger...enough to keep our promise.” Tsukiko smiles brightly, bringing her lips ever closer to my own.
“Ah, that's right. We promised to get married, didn't we...?” I sullenly reply, making her stop and look at me in disbelief.
“You...don't want to?” Tsukiko's eyes start to form tears, but I stay resolute to my relationship with Kasumi.
“Things have changed in these last three years. The gang's finally been caught, everyone's gone their separate ways, and...I have girlfriend now. I know how much that promise meant to you, but there's just no way I can keep it. I'm sorry, Tsukiko.”
“...” Tsukiko makes no sound as the tears fall freely from her face.
I pull Tsukiko into me, offering her comfort in my body so that she won't have to bear the pain on her own.
“...I guess your efforts were all for nothing, huh?” I make a casual comment on today, feeling the bittersweet emotion in the words.
“Did you...do it with her?” Tsukiko whispers to me.
“Well, no...” I flatly answer.
“Then the promise...is still valid.” Tsukiko pushes me on my back and starts to tear at my clothes.
Suddenly the door to the guard post flies open and a Ryu with ruby eyes slithers in, eyes closed while smiling cheerfully.
“Magnus, your duty for today has ended. Let's go home~!” Kasumi opens her eyes and her face drops at the sight of Tsukiko pinning me to the floor.
“Uh, Kasumi, please don't do anything reckless.” I plea, knowing very well how bad this could be for everyone due to Kasumi's powers.
“Magnus...your girlfriend?” Tsukiko points, putting her mask back on.
“And who might you be? You have some nerve to make a move on my husband!” Kasumi roars, slamming her tail against the floor.
“Not your husband...soon, mine.” Tsukiko challenges Kasumi as she pulls me off the floor and presses my head against her breasts.
“Er, um...could we just-”
“Silence, Magnus.” Both girls command as I tremble at the ensuing cat fight.
“Magnus and I have a very intimate relationship! We have a very deep connection; more than you'll ever know!” Kasumi grabs my arm and pulls me towards her.
“Not intimate or deep...without sex. Magnus and I promised...marriage.” Tsukiko pulls on my other arm, competing with Kasumi in a 'love tug-of-war'.
Ow ow ow ow...
All I can think of is the pain running through my arms and the eventual dimension of problems that this whole arrangement will bring me in the future.
A/N: That was an amazing one-shot, if I'm allowed to comment on it. It felt like something straight out of an anime, which reminds me: why isn't there much anime based off monster girls? It's been nagging me for...all of the last 30 minutes. Also, it's time for an interview with Magnus since you all must be curious about a few things! *Audience claps, Magnus appears on the set* "So Magnus, enjoy the little surprise I sent you?" "What surprise?" "The 'Moon Child', of course. I contracted her to get you after all." "You were the one who hired Tsukiko...I'm gonna kill you!" "Pon already tried that. Turns out it doesn't work very well. Moving on, what kind of history do you have with Tsukiko?" "I saved her from a couple of thugs when my gang was just starting out, recruited her, then started dating her. She left after pledging to marry me once she got strong enough to protect herself." "Hmm...interesting. So I take it things are hectic at home?" "More than you'll ever believe." "Oh by the way, how come you have a Western name instead of a Japanese one?" "My parents were foreigners, but I was born in the Zipangu area." "Ah, right; perfectly normal. By the way, would you be interested in working with a Manticore?" "No." "Aw come on! Please? Just for a day?" "No." *Magnus leaves and goes home* Fine, I'll see if I can contact someone to fill the role. I hope you all enjoyed that two-part saga as much as I did, and don't worry about Magnus; he'll be around. Thanks for all the reading up to this point, and for commenting on the chapters you enjoyed most! I hope to see you all again in the next chapter!