Accounts of Strange Incidents

Twenty-Seventh Panel

Omens

“I would go outside if someone were to accompany me.”


Relieved that the Daimyo had been found, Kaisei quickly sends word out that the search is over, the Daimyo is safe, and everyone can calm down. It takes a while for the news to get to Soichiro who seems particularly affected. Misako on her part is happy to have visitors and feels that she is strong enough to walk around outside if someone could help her. Maybe the maiko could drop by and entertain her now and then?

The Takumi offers to help Misako walk around and, with Tenka in tow, eventually they end up by the tree where Iwao’s shogi board is set up. The oni greets the child Daimyo happily and the two immediately settle down to their game which Misako watches with interest. After Tenka defeats Iwao, the oni sets up the board again and demands a rematch. Before anyone can respond, Misako asks if she can play and the oni happily accepts. Kaisei quietly observes to his Daimyo that the oni really loves shogi. This makes the boy nod and observe in turn that the oni is actually getting better at it.

As the game between the oni and the widow progresses, the smell of burnt wood suddenly permeates the air and a young female oni steps out from behind the tree. She goes up to Iwao, addresses him petulantly as her elder brother, and tells him that he’s long overdue to come home. Without looking up from the board, Iwao tells his little sister, Ikkini by name, that he’s busy playing and to leave him alone.

Ikkini, Iwao’s little sister


But Ikkini persists and reminds her big brother of the errand he was supposed to run for their parents: he was supposed to bring back the ghost of someone-or-other because of a deal that that someone made with their parents seven years ago. Iwao replies gruffly that he has not been able to find someone-or-other or their ghost so he can’t go back yet. Besides, he’s busy playing. At this Ikkini pouts, stamps her foot and turns to leave, saying that their parents will not be pleased. Iwao just grumbles, and Misako puts his king in checkmate, ending the game.

Iwao, not for the first time that day, stares dumbfounded at the board while Misako thanks him for the game by bowing. Meanwhile, Natsumi has caught up and proceeds to scold Tenka. As he watches the scene before him, Kaisei worries what would happen should the parents of the oni siblings decide to appear and take matters into their own hands.

Back in the domain of the Nohebi, Yugiri and Murasaki approach a despondent woman. The Onmyouji manipulates the situation in such a way that the Kaishaku has to talk to the woman which flusters Murasaki because she’s not comfortable talking to strangers, and at the same makes her annoyed at Yugiri for some reason. The officers of the Tensai learn that the woman’s parents were forced to sell off her sister, and that half a dozen other girls in the town had suffered the same fate. The very next day, the ashigaru of the Nohebi began marching around with bright, shiny new matchlocks.

“The ashigaru began marching around with bright, shiny new matchlocks.”


End of the Twenty-Seventh Panel
to the Twenty-Sixth Panel
to the Twenty-Eighth Panel

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