'It is such a mess' Tanjiro yawned while sitting up as he removed Inosuke's arms from over his chest and looked at the new figure still sleeping with his legs spread. The scars extending from his lips to the better half of his cheeks once again pulled no small amount of pity from Tanjiro. While Tanjiro always thought that Ibunai could use some good night's sleep, his past had made Tanjiro realize that he must never judge a book by its cover.
Looking around the messy hut, Tanjiro found Zenitsu still sleeping while hugging a silver-haired girl. It was one of Ray's many Succu clones. Like there are many of them.
"Mombanko Tamajiro", Inosuke mumbled and his beauty seemed no less than Ray. Had he not built his body after training for so many years, Inosuke might have competed against Ray. But when Tanjiro recalled the final arrival of the night, his mind instantly soured up. To think he would be sharing a night with Muzan, who he swore to avenge, made Tanjiro finally think about life in all its wondrous mystery.
He didn't know why or how, but all the acc.u.mulated hatred against Muzan had disappeared just like that. Snap and gone.
Scratching his head, stretched his arms and exhaled deeply before getting out of the comfort of the mattress to freshen up. What happened last night was something Tanjiro couldn't even fathom but in the end, he still spent a lot of time racking his brain to come up with an explanation as he wore his demon-slaying uniform and buckling his nichirin blade on the side of his waist.
With Ray's disappearance being as common as the gradual setting and emergence of sun, Tanjiro paid the succubus' presence no heed and made his way towards the dining area and his attention was instantly diverted by the state of the village.
Puddle of liquids that shouldn't be exposed to the public casually while many houses and the walls sported a few damages, if not an absolutely horrendous destruction, that made Tanjiro shiver momentarily. His steps didn't stop until he reached am equally messy dining area and with a sigh, he found himself out of options. He had already tried contacting Ray, but all he received in return was the time at which Ray would return- Half-an-hour. But, amidst the pungent scent that filled the village, he picked a strangely sweet scent.
It was Nik's!
But, Nik's existence didn't make Tanjiro shiver in terror but another peculiar scent that he would never forget.
His legs blurred in motion and he passed through the remaining mess without paying any attention to the disgusting scene that the village now proclaimed. His breathing grew quicker and his heart threatened to burst out. Why was Nezuko's scent so clear?! Did she leave the box?! If yes, then wouldn't that mean
Unwilling to continue his train of thought, Tanjiro ran as fast as he could when suddenly his eyes widened and the muscles of his calves contracted wildly, bringing an abrupt pause to his extreme speed as his crimson eyes matched a pair of pink, vertical-pupiled eyes. His breathing came to a stop before he found, to his glee, that Nezuko wasn't hurt in the slightest.
Not minding the people around Nezuko, Tanjiro pulled the little demoness into a hug while his arms coiled around her head as his crimson eyes warmed before giving way to tears of happiness. She is awake and alright! That's what truly mattered to him now. That is all!
Meanwhile, Nik, who is already accustomed to using [Life Vision], once again focused on the agitated black energy that never left the Kamado siblings since the moment Nik has known them. And now, he sweated bullets when he found eerie-looking constructs made of that same energy wrapping around the duo. A woman, a newborn and two kids.
Nik cursed with his mind buzzing due to the stunning realization.
Actual, real-life, pale-skinned, Ghosts! With newborn babies to the boot!
His spine tingled and while his [Talent] may allow him to come into the physical contact with these particular creatures, seeing them, Nik had no desire to ever cross their paths if he has another choice.
"Did something happen?"
Being the nearest to Nik, Shinobu naturally heard Nik's cussing and inquired with her head tilting up. Knowing that the image would be a better way to explain the sudden change, Nik shared the memory with Shinobu, whose eyes, too, widened in disbelief. The duo, in fact, never thought of sharing the same thing with Mitsuri. Her sudden reaction may end up gaining them unwanted attention.
As Tanjiro's sobs turned into loud sniffles, Nik felt two particular beings entering his Pheromone Domain. One having pheromones of an even higher quality while the other being was simply filled with the l.u.s.t of blood to the brim, unable to l.u.s.t in the pleasure of the flesh.
[We got company.]
Nik informed Mitsuri and Shinobu and the new arrival took a few moments to reach Nik. A burly, blue-haired youth in a black t-shirt and black pants with a rather large nichirin blade belted on his waist waved at Nik while the onesie wearing silver-haired 'girl' passed a grin at Nik before focusing on the hugging siblings.
By now, Nezuko had already reciprocated the hug silently as Tanjiro continued crying.
"You should have invited me if you planned for such a rowdy party!" Ray chided while pouting his lips and placing his hands on his thin and supple waist. His words instantly attracted a curious look from Shinobu and Mitsuri. On the other hand, Nik, who had grown a little bit accustomed to Ray remained impassive and gazed at Brian.
"I hope you enjoyed your hunt, Guildmaster."
Finally, the word 'Guildmaster' triggered a reaction from Shinobu and Mitsuri as Nik continued while gesturing at the duo, "Cause I did."
Smiling in return, Brian nodded at Shinobu and Mitsuri, "I would have welcomed you a little formally," gazing back at Nik, the fiend continued in humor, "But you can understand my plight when I have to welcome many ladies frequently, right?"
Before Mitsuri could nod in understanding, Shinobu's gaze brightened as a wicked smile touched her lips, "Surely, it must be easier than farting fire, right?"
"Pfft!" Brian's face stiffened while Nik choked. Mitsuri and Ray, on the other hand, matched each other gazes in confusion and curiosity as they weren't privy to the base event of Shinobu's words.
"Anyway" Nik coughed and smiled. There was no way he was going to rectify Shinobu's behavior. It is simply one of the many qualities that made her so likable and annoying at the same time, "Shinobu, Mitsuri, they both are my guildmates and from the [System], of course. He is Brian and," Nik pointed at Ray and emphasized his words, "He is Ray. He."
"For the last time, it isn't a crime being a man." Ray spread his arms as Nik nodded in understanding, "No, it isn't. But pointing someone's gender out isn't a crime either."
"Well, I think it is extremely rude and insensible of you." Shinobu suddenly spoke up and walked towards Ray while crouching down to match Ray's gaze, "He is such a cute boy. You should treat him more gently." Her palms landed on Ray's head while her heart momentarily cheered gleefully at the touch and the texture of the soft fabric. Following Shinobu's lead, Mitsuri also walked closer and crouched next to Shinobu while her wide green eyes glanced at Ray's face momentarily.
She exclaimed while touching the fabric ears of the onesie.
"You should learn from them, Nik."
Smiling smugly, Ray allowed his head getting pat while Brian exhaled deeply.
"Can we chat for a moment?"
Nik nodded and looked at Ray before grinning wolfishly, "I am sure that they would still pat you when they find out that you have already tamed Muzan and countless other men in your Harem."
As if Ray had been waiting for this moment the entire time, he smiled gently and looked at the stunned face Shinobu and Mitsuri.
"You won't believe the dirt on Muzan that I can share and even the other pillars. Especially Obanai
FYI Muzan likes it dirty and he isn't the 'giver'."
For a moment, the duo's brain buzzed with the overload of information but as Nik gazed at the gradual transformation of their expression, Nik knew, he had lost this round. Apparently, the dirt Ray had been whispering held way more incentive than Nik had previously accounted it to be.
Brian walked up to Nik, but before they left, Nik once again shouted back at Ray, "Hey, I've got a favor to ask. Can you remove the memory of the last night from the mind of every villager?"
Not minding the request, Ray nodded, "Sure thing, I'll cash in the favor on a later date."
Finally finding a rather decent location void of any illicit fluids, Brian and Nik got to talking. Bending two earthen chairs, the duo sat and the fiend opened up.
"I will be open about this," Brian spoke with a heavy expression. With a deep sigh, he looked at Nik, "You cannot keep singling out Ray like that"
For a moment, Nik simply couldn't process what Brian seemed to be implying at. For the sake of confirmation, Nik still inquired after a brief pause, "I beg your pardon?"
"I said," Sighing at the evidently awkward turn that this chat might turn to, Brian huffed loudly as his shoulders sank, "I expect both you and Ray to be on good terms once I commence my Rank-up quest. Which, by the way, is right after this current world travel."
"I'm sorry, I still don't understand. I mean, I'm a delight. How can I not get along with Ray? And what's with this sudden sense of responsibility?"
Nik raised his eyebrow and continued to press for answers.
"First of all you won't remain a delight to the men whose women are involved with you, and honestly, I expect such a scenario soon enough."
"Compliments are not the answers I am seeking, Guild Master."
Nik crossed his arms and frowned while Brian took a deep breath and smiled.
"Alright, I think It is safe to assume that you have not checked on the basics of the guild system and the necessary know-how considering that you did not even check on the guild store.
A guild receives a regular stipend until the Guild Master advances from Rank 1. The stipend is added to the individual's account after the completion of five adventures.
Of course, this ends once I successfully promote to Rank 2. Then, the only way we can continue our guild to protect ourselves and hire out the necessary services for our survival, like the [Scroll of Pardon]. But, after a period of time, we need to deposit a rather large amount of SO to keep our guild in business.
And for that, we need clients.
Clients willing to spend on services exclusive to our guild."
"I call a massage house!"
Nik smiled while Brian sighed deeply.
"Get serious, man. This is our future we are talking about."
"Alright, alright" Nik finally smacked his lips and frowned, "But seriously, if you think that I am specifically trying to be rude in front of Ray, then you are wrong."
"Joking about their"
"Ray is a male succubus. Probably, he is the most unique existence that we can ever encounter even if we include ourselves to the list.
And, Ray isn't a weak bitch. If he had a problem with me jabbing at his s.e.x.u.a.l orientation, do you think he would have kept his quiet?
And honestly, instead of avoiding Ray's preferences out of my casual chat with him and ignoring the elephant in the room, I would rather joke about it and make him jab at me vocally, too."
"I never considered it that way." Brian admitted that he had been too focused on the situation presented on the surface. And after mulling on Nik's words, Brian did feel that he had been a little short-sighted when it came to his social views.
"But," Nik continued, "I will keep my mouth in check. Maybe I did get overly familiar with him and now that I think about it, I really should slow down."
Nik's shoulders sank, too as the duo looked at each other and sighed heavily.
"It was mighty hurtful for you to say that I did not lay attention to the basics of the guilds
I am emotionally scarred now."
The sorrowful expression projected by Nik garnered little amus.e.m.e.nt from the already tensed Temporal Fiend, "Yeah, yeah, Whatever."
"Ray is going to burn you with this info, you know that, right?" Nik jested with a wolfish grin as Brian grimaced.
"Either way, I was thinking of eating from my own stash with girls, want to join?"
Nik produced two bottles of beer and passed one to Brian as the latter nodded with his expression easing visibly.
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