I watched the girls ascend proudly on to the stage while wondering when did the girls plan for this?
Don't tell me they managed to prepare all this within these two weeks?
Hell, even Cai Hong is participating too.
I can only assume the girls had planned, practised and perfected their performance within the short time frame that I've given them to source for more staff.
If that was true, then that's some God-like skills right there.
Putting that aside, the fox youkai's performance was also quite interesting. Because of the fact that I've rarely been out of my room in the past, I was absolutely clueless on the entertainment of this world.
I'm a little ashamed to admit that I had zero interest in such things like music back then.
That Shizuri girl was also quite interesting.
I had noticed that her magic had managed to charm even some of the Masters that were present.
Even if they were inexperienced, they should have at least felt something was off and tried to protect themselves from it.
I was unaffected by it since I had recognised the magic she had tried to conceal behind her singing before hand and prepared a counter for it.
Seeing that there was nothing malicious about it other than increasing her performance's appeal, I didn't outright stop her either.
But I also noticed that Manami was quite displeased by her performance for some reason.
Putting aside the tragic ending and the various plot holes like how the village girl's love never once loved her back, making the village girl more of a creep than some tragic heroine, I thought the performance was rather well done.
And the way that fox girl suddenly changed her tone when I talked to her was intriguing too.
I can't be too sure but I can bet my money that Manami has a yandere on her hands.
I'm still not sure if Manami is aware of that fact yet though, but I suppose it would be prudent of me to at least keep an eye on her. Wouldn't want her to shank anyone of us because of a misunderstanding after all.
Yanderes are scary, you know?
If I had a yandere girl chasing after me, I don't know what I would do.
What's wrong with them? They're the cutest girls there is! Just look at them setting up on the stage for their performance, they're just so cute.
The incident with the fish scoop stall tender?
Bah, it was their first time playing fish scooping, it can't be helped that they thought the stall tender was scamming them in some way after their catchers broke thrice in a row, you know?
There's no way my cute disciples can be yanderes.
Even if they are, are you telling me headpats are what is keeping them from going crazy? Ha!
I admit to the divine power of headpats, but I doubt I'm good enough to be able to stop a crazy person using headpats.
Do I need to remind you that Lian Li is a possible world ending calamity?
And hey! I've already managed to pacify her using the compassionate bandit strategy already!
One hundred percent effective!
No doubt, no doubt, no doubt.
Oh, it looks like the girls are done setting up.
So Manami is on the instruments while the other four will be performing a dance I suppose?
The girls doing the dance had lined themselves up in order of height, Lian Li took front stage while Eris stood slightly hidden behind and followed by Diao Chan after her. Cai Hong stood to the side of the stage as the shortest, probably waiting for her cue to walk in.
When viewed from the front, only Lian Li was visible among the three girls with the tip of the other two girls' heads just barely poking above Lian Li's frame.
Manami is surrounded by a whole lot of instruments
I'm seeing a Shamisen on her left, two flutes that I surmised to be a Nohkan and a Shakuhachi, two small Taiko drums with a Tsuzumi beside them and a Koto strings on her right.
How is she going to play all that by herself?!
Just as that thought entered my head, her tails began shifting themselves towards each instrument while her own hands picked up the Nohkan flute.
There should be a limit to your tails' dexterity you know?!
The girls shared a glance and a nod, the four girls on stage taking out a foldable paper fan from within their sleeves while Manami picked up the Nohkan flute towards her lips.
A second passed before a high-pitched whistling sound blew out from the flute.
That was the cue for Cai Hong to start moving towards the group of three, her bare feet gliding across the stage with the fan held firmly at her side.
Cai Hong did a twirl when she reached the space in front of Lian Li, bringing the other girls to life as they slid into their posing position, their fans flushed open and on display.
Manami began her beat on the Tsuzumi with her tail, giving the dancers a four-tap beat to follow.
At the end of the first double tap of the Tsuzumi, Manami quickly switched out the flute in her hands for the Shamisen, strumming it without hesitation.
The girls on stage leapt to the sides, forming a horizontal line as they began their dance in earnest. Their kimono sleeves flared as they swayed side to side, their faces full of smiles and their eyes staring straight at me.
They twirled again, tucking their paper fans in their obi just as two of Manami's tails started their beat on the Taiko drums and another two began strumming the Koto's strings.
The girls moved faster and faster, their every sway and step in sync with the beat.
Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, Manami had lifted the Nohkan to her lips with her tails and blew a whistling tune into it, all the while still strumming the Shamisen in her hands.
I'm pretty sure most of the audience's jaw had dropped to the ground by now. Either that, or they were too captivated by the dance to notice Manami's little performance there.
As though passing over a baton, the moment Manami's lips had left the flute, the girls on stage began their own singing, enrapturing the audience with their voice. Meanwhile, Manami had switched the Nohkan for the deeper sounding Shakuhachi flute as accompaniment.
The girls sang of a nation with thousands of cherry blossom trees and how it has changed through the fires of war.
There were the laments of the traditionalists who wished the centuries long traditions would stay, but yet, the nation still chose to move forward and abandon its traditions in favour of more modern cultures.
They sang of how the nation changed so much that it was as if a new being had taken its place, already unrecognizable by the old timers who were there since the nation's founding.
Their movements became faster and sharper, signifying the traditionalists last attempts in trying to preserve the cultures of their forefathers. The song matched their pace and energy as Manami switched to the higher pitched Nohkan again.
The girls twirled and sang, showing the discourse within the nation as the people rejected the change before gradually accepting that the past was something that had to be left behind, most of the people coming to embrace the change.
The song then gradually slowed down once more, the girls' dance also slowing down to match the tempo.
Manami once more showed her talents as she switched between the Nohkan and Shakuhachi quickly without pause, her tails expertly manipulating the flutes while still playing the other instruments.
In the song, the people were slowly adapting to its newfound identity in an alien place. But even in such a time, they found a way to mix tradition and modernity together, forging an even newer identity for themselves that they could all accept together.
The song sped up once more as the people celebrated their uniqueness in the new world, dancing and singing under the thousands of cherry blossom trees.
The song ended with the girls posing in the middle with their paper fans spread open and Manami plucking the last sting on her Shamisen.
Their eyes had been on me the entire time, as though only my opinion mattered to them.
I gave them a nod and a smile, bringing my hands together for an applause.
The crowd was awoken from their trance by my clapping, all of them joining in to turn it into a thunderous applause.
A full faced smile graced each of their faces. They stood back up to line up on the stage and give a deep bow to the audience, leaving the stage while the applause still continued long after they left.
I, myself, am quite speechless at their performance too.
It was nothing short of extraordinary, no doubt this performance would be in the minds of every visitor today.
But I wonder just when and how they managed to come up with something like this?
While deep in my thoughts, I felt a presence creep near me.
I turned around to see the six tailed fox from before standing behind me, a knife wielded in each hand while a disconcerting smile was on her face.
"Ehehehe~~ You shouldn't have turned around~~"