|Author: Carrot Sauce||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 3187 characters|
|Translator: Myuu||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1959 words|
“Lil’ Lily! Are you alright?”
Shimizu rushed over to see Lily who was lying in her own room.
“Instructor Sakiko just checked me up. I’m fine, just sprained my wrist a little.”
“That’s good.” Shimizu let out a sigh of relief.
“But Sister Shimizu, you should be careful,” Lily warned her with a grim expression.
“Sister Shimizu, that exceptionally strong female ninja seemed to be nosing around your residence before I discovered her.”
“No wonder. I also felt like I was being peeped on by a pair of cold eyes earlier, but didn’t realize that it was really a female ninja. Since she could hide her presence from me, I’m afraid that she’s stronger than me.”
“Then Sister Shimizu needs to be even more careful. Furthermore, she kept mentioning something about the hundred demons and the Land of Hundred Demons. Where exactly is that?” Lily was really bothered about the Land of Hundred Demons.
Shimizu shifted her gaze to the oiled-paper window. “I, and even the Genji clan, know very little about the Land of Hundred Demons. It isn’t specifically part of any provinces, but any land that is occupied by those intellectual great demons are referred to as part of the Land of Hundred Demons. However, it is unknown if the Land of a Hundred Demons is unified as a single entity or if there is a sole ruler. Of course, we all hope that this isn’t the case. An independent great demon doesn’t pose too much threat because powerful demons are greater in number than humans in the first place. Although the population of ordinary humans is high, samurai are rare. But the strength of those that can be called as demons are at least of an Early-Stage Samurai. If these demons were to unite, then the reign of humans would have been ended long ago.”
Lily was reminded of the earth-shattering battle between Shuten Doji and Sugawara no Michizane. It would seem like there was hatred and struggles among demons too. Putting aside the forces of a hundred demons, if only these two demon lords were to be united, a destructive calamity would surely befall the Land of East.
“The Land of Hundred Demons…” Shimizu’s voice turned grave. “If that female ninja is on the hundred demons’ side, then they have most likely discovered my identity as the mirror girl.”
“Then aren’t you in grave danger, Sister Shimizu?”
“When we finished off Onigumo, a few of his spiders escaped. At that time, I expected that this would happen sooner or later. There’s no need to be afraid of them. It has been my plan all along to fight against the demon that persecuted the mirror girls. As for the female ninja that bullied Lil’ Lily, hmph, I shall take revenge for you soon!” Shimizu held Lily’s hand.
It was then Sakiko who went off to strengthen the defense of the dojo came back again. “Sorry for interrupting you sisters.”
“I have something important to tell both of you. Lord Kamakura has decided to summon all of you for an audience in three days. Of course, that includes Uesugi Rei and the other samurai who had contributed in the war at Odawara and the Fuma Clan!” Sakiko announced solemnly.
“Really?” Lily got up, looking quite excited. She didn’t even know what the most powerful man in the Land of East, Lord Kamakura, Minamoto no Yoritomo, looked like.
“Oh…” Shimizu looked gloomy instead. Although she had considerable merit in this battle, she still disgraced the Genji main family by losing to Uesugi Rei. She might be too ashamed to show her face in front of Lord Kamakura at this time, but it wasn’t like she could refuse to attend the audience.
“By the way, this is probably the most important audience that you will be attending in your life thus far. You will have to prepare a formal long-sleeved kimono of the highest quality,” Sakiko advised.
“Understood!” Lily replied with even more enthusiasm. After all, how could she not be happy about being able to buy new clothes for such a noble reason? Lily’s unhappiness from being bullied by Yuki Mayumi instantly dissipated too.
Shiu couldn’t help but feel envious to see how Lily managed to fully recover from just hearing about buying new clothes. Maybe this was why the girl could always be so happy?
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However, there was no way she would know the hardship and burden Lily had in her heart.
“Well then, rest well, Lil’ Lily. Let’s hit the street tomorrow morning and visit the best fabric shop in Kamakura City, alright?”
Unfortunately, it was raining the next morning. The entire Kamakura was shrouded in gray fog.
Even so, they were still going to meet Lord Kamakura, rain or shine. Hence, Lily and Shimizu went out early in the morning with their umbrella.
Shimizu was dressed in a black yukata that was adorned with golden flowers and carried a pure white paper umbrella. Lily wore her favorite white yukata with red maple leaves and carried her red Sakura Parasol.
It was cold in the late autumn. The streets were nearly deserted thanks to the rain that was hitting on the roofs noisily and on the ancient stony road.
Lily and Shimizu walked around the ancient city with their red and white umbrellas under the rain, looking like two fairies that had descended to the mortal world.
The two walked side by side in a deep and quiet alley. There was only an Akita dog1, whose fur had clumped together from being drenched in the rain. It was laying under an old roof as it watched the two fairies passing by.
Lily would occasionally turn her head and look at Shimizu. The world around her was bustling, but her heart was as calm as water.
Shimizu was the kind of girl who could cleanse someone’s soul when they were in her presence.
“Lil’ Lily, I feel lucky to have met you.”
“Although we haven’t known each other for a long time, I’m having the best time of my life. Your company made me realize that even losing to Uesugi Rei, not being the best in the Land of East and not being valued by the higher-ups in the Genji clan no longer mattered. Even knowing that the forces of the Land of Hundred Demons probably have their eyes on me while I have hit a wall in my training, I can face my failures with a smile and summon endless courage as long as I think of protecting my little sister. Even if my body is withering away, my heart burns for you.2”
Shimizu spoke from the bottom of her heart while walking as the rain continued crashing down.
“Do you know which part of you attracted me the most?”
“Eh? W-Which part?”
“Not beauty, not sexiness and not your kind personality.”
Shimizu gazed at Lily. “It’s your sincerity.”
“You would never flatter me. Instead, you would really put yourself in my shoes and think for me. You sincerely worry about me from the bottom of your heart.”
“You never go against your own feelings. You have directly rejected me more than once, yet care about me like a family.”
“You knew of my secret, but didn’t pry. On top of that, you wouldn’t hesitate to stay by my side and fight fearlessly alongside me.”
“You wouldn’t conceal yourself due to desire and ambition, nor force yourself for the sake of being kind on the surface. You care about the people around you. You come forward to help them not for rewards, but because you are that kind of woman. You are merely doing what you want to do… Within your sincerity and charm, there is also courage and perseverance.”
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“Most importantly, you never deceive me, unlike everyone else.3 Likewise, I have never deceived you too. Lil’ Lily, you are so sincere and honest with me.”
“I am different from those who are obsessed with your beauty and figure. I love you for your sincere heart.”
Shhhhhhhh——! The rain continued to fall even heavily.
“Lil’ Lily, am I right?” Shimizu looked at Lily with her gentleness and infatuation in her eyes.
“Sister Shimizu, I…”
She would have truly sinned if she couldn’t get Shimizu to pull herself together, or make her overthink and cause her condition to worsen due to worry. Lily was willing to do anything for Shimizu as long as it didn’t cross the line of deviant love between women.
“Yes.” A sincere and dazzling smile appeared on Lily’s face.
“Mhm.” Shimizu nodded as her lips curled into a contented smile that was rarely seen.
‘As long as you are happy, Sister Shimizu.’ Lily thought to herself.
The two picked their materials from the best fabric shop in Kamakura, then had their luxurious dresses made.
Shimizu picked a solemnly gorgeous black fabric with blue butterflies, as well as golden, white and brilliant red flowers on it.
On the other hand, Lily picked an enchantingly red and wide fabric. When the whole piece was spread out, a large painting of snow, moon and flowers was revealed. In its beauty, there was also a trace of sadness.
After that, the two returned hand-in-hand.
However, on their way back, the wind suddenly got stronger and rain started pouring harder. Shimizu’s clothes were too thin to withstand the cold and as a result, she was hit with a coughing fit. Her white umbrella was blown away by the wind and unfortunately got crushed under a bullock cart that was passing by in the rain. It was too damaged and muddy to even be used.
“Sister Shimizu, umm… Why don’t you share the umbrella with me?” Lily held her Sakura Parasol up.
“Eh? Can I?”
Shimizu leaned her cold body against Lily’s chest. Even in the cold autumn rain, Lily’s body was emitting heat. Shimizu stopped coughing and felt exceptionally warm.
‘If I can keep walking with her like this and continue training while caring for each other, it doesn’t matter if our relationship doesn’t progress a step further. I am already very satisfied.’ Shimizu thought in her heart.
Just like this, both of them shared Sakura Parasol and each other’s warmth while making their way back to the dojo
Three days later, the best bullock carts in Kamakura City were already waiting at the main dojo of the East. It was a warm and sunny day. Lily wore an ōfurisode that was so red that even the maple leaves paled in comparison. When she spread her sleeves, there was a moon, flowers and snow that resembled dancing butterflies in the background. The custom-made outfit looked like it was a scroll painting made for the fairy who had fallen into this world.
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Shimizu wore a black-themed ōfurisode that brought out her elegance. Although it wasn’t as gorgeous as Lily’s, it was still a very tasteful outfit.
It looked most beautiful when the sleeves were spread open, turning into a stunning swallowtail butterfly.
One was an ethereal flower, while the other was the most elegant flower in the secular world.
Presumably even the eyes of Lord Kamakura, the greatest existence in the Land of East, would lit up at the sight of them.
And on this day, Uesugi Rei also set off from a military camp in the outskirts. Unexpectedly, she didn’t ride a horse. She sat in a light brown palanquin instead, wearing a white formal long-sleeved kimono that had purple-blue landscapes and flying swallows. Her silky hair was neatly put in a beautiful updo. Her silver hairpin was studded with an intoxicatingly blue classic fan ornament on it. A dot of red was painted on her soft pink lips.4
- Silva: I feel kinda guilty for her knowing Lily is still keeping many secrets from her.
- Silva: well…
True, she never deceived you, but she didn’t tell you her secrets either.
- Robinxen: I thought there was a link to go here but apparently not.
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