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Smokey Spring

Who: Ashe Gray, Lily White
Where: Bamboo Forest of the Lost
What: While wandering Lily finds Ashe in a bit of an odd predicament
Watch For: Fairies stuck in logs, Fairies on Fire




It was late afternoon in the Bamboo Forest although it was a bit difficult to tell due how tall the bamboo was. Still in the forest of the lost various fairies and rabbits worked and played. But of course the fairies were keeping eyes on various things and playing fairy games.

Of course With Ashe Gray she was wandering and looking for a good hiding place as the fairy was running around the various tall bamboo and brush near them as she quickly jumped into a knocked down tree as she crawled ahead although with a smoke fairy doing this it mean that there was a gray trail of ash going along the path she dove leaving a bit of an obvious path to the log she was hiding in.

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As she would soon find out, though, Ashe Gray wasn't the only 'greater fairy' in the area. Lily White was also in the area, though merely for the purposes of enjoying the scenery. She had been around Gensokyo for a while, and had seen quite a bit of the Bamboo Forest during the Haunted Flowers incident, so it stuck out to her when she saw a pile of ash on the ground.

"Huh?" said Lily, landing on the ground with a flutter of her wings. "Wonder what happened here," She looked up and saw that it wasn't a pile, but a trail of ash leading somewhere. Curiosity getting the better of her, she started following the trail.

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The sound of footfalls got to Ashe as she thought she wasn't going to be found as she had the BEST hiding place! And soon enough she was giggling a little bit as she looking out one end of the log not realizing someone might be at the OTHER side. Sure it meant that Ashe was blind to anything behind her as she looked around a little bit from her hole as she squirmed forwards a bit to try and find who was there. Of course this just leads to more soot behind her and kicking up out of the back of the log. Of course then comes the problem of her being stuck. A blink as she tried to pull herself forwards as she pulled back and tried to pull herself forwards once again.

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Lily eventually reached the end of the trail of ash. It ended promptly at a hollow log. She tilted her head in confusion and peered over it to the other side where, if she had a better vantage point, Ashe's head would be visible.

Suddenly the log gave a bit of a cough, in the form of a puff of soot being belched out the back end of it. "Yeeep!" She leaped backwards a couple of feet as her wings flared out slightly. She crouched down to try and peer through the hole, but received a face full of ash for it, sending her into a coughing fit as she stood up and shook it off of herself

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And there was Ashe as she heard someone behind her as she quickly tried to move only making sure that Ashe's log was starting to rock side to side as she started to roll a little bit as she found herself looking up at the sky as she tried again to get herself out of the log again. So she was stuck there and she was going to get tagged out! That's worse her being stuck in a log! She continued to squirm and move and make a bit of smoke as she was more than a little bit worried about her odd predicament.

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The spring fairy let out another yelp as the log started to move. She floated into the air a bit to avoid another belch of ash, this one appearing more forceful than the previous two. From her new position, she was able to see Ashe struggling to get free of the log. She landed in front of her and crouched down. "You need any help?" she asked, wondering if she was hostile or not.

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Ashe couldn't see the voice but it didn't sound like her sisters so she kinda wobbled a bit, "I think I'm stuck!" she said as she tried to pull herself forwards once more. Just how she expected to get fully forwards was a bit of a mystery to most but with Ashe she was only thinking in single path of thinking. With just how the fairy was she was determined to be able to pull herself forwards even though she could push herself in reverse but that would lead to odd things.

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Lily rolled her eyes. That much was obvious. She looked down at the log. "How did you manage to get yourself stuck anyway?" Granted, she was probably able to figure that out herself based on the trail of ash that lead her here. Which brought up another question in Lily's mind; Who was this fairy anyway? The only other 'greater fairies' she recalled were Cirno, Sunny Milk, Luna Child, Star Sapphire, and Daiyousei, who were embodiments of Ice, the Sun, the Moon, the Stars, and... come to think of it, did Daiyousei represent anything?

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"I was hiding and well Um... I went in there and to hide and well I can't fit through!" the fairy said as she wobbled in the log a bit more. Sure Ashe was trying to talk with her hands in the log but it wasn't possible as the fairy seemed to be unable to properly understand and manifest just what was her problem. "So Um can you help me get not stuck?" she said as she kicked her legs in the log as she tried to flop in the log a bit more, soot coming out of the back as her flailing about constantly created new problems for her as soot came out the other side as well

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Lily White thought for a moment. "Uhh... Maybe I could try and push you back out?" she suggested, pressing lightly on Ashe's head. If her hands were visible, she could attempt to pull her though THIS side of the log, but alas, she'd have to go back out the way she came.

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Ashe paused, "Could you just push me then?" she said as she get a bit of traction, "Just keep pushing I think and I'll pop out and then we can do things miss unseeable!" Ashe kicked her legs a bit as she wiggled a bit, "Unless you got a cutty thing and can cut this and then I can pop out. That would be neat. I heard there is someone with TWO big ones somewhere too!"

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Lily White says, "Alright then..." said Lily, crouching down and trying to brace herself against something. "I don't have any way of cutting you free, so we're going to have to push you out, then..." She placed both her hands on Ashe's head, placing her feet against a rock that was buried in the ground... "Ready...? One... two... THREE!" On the count of three, Lily began pushing as hard as she could in an attempt to free Ashe from the log."

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The fairy pushed hard and soon enough Ashe was shifting slowly then suddenly Ashe was shot out of the log like a rocket tumbling out and ending upside down, her dress thankfully covering her as she was in a small smoke cloud before she got up, "Thank you... Cousin!" She said as she suddenly got up looking no worse for the wear as she jumped up to meet this new cousin who was wearing white and had a hat! "You have a hat! But you're not a maid Cousin so you must be new~!"

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Lily nodded at Ashe's observation. "You're right, I'm not... well, I'm not NEW..." she explains, "I'm Lily White, the Herald of Spring!" Her wings fluttered behind her both as a presentation thing and as a way of shaking some of the ash off of them. Seeing Ashe made her wonder what element she could be tied to. Fire? Heat? Who knows... "I could say the same about you... I don't think I've seen you around before, have I?"

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Ashe paused as she blinked trying to thinking about it. One could almost see the gears turning in her head as she tried to remember something before her eyes went wide, "I think I know about you! Lily, Sunny said there was a spring fairy and I never saw her so I didn't know but you're still you." The smoke fairy nodded as she eagerly seemed to look around Lily's outfit, "I'm Ashe and I woke up um... Spring comes before summer to... I've been awake for Three summers! I came up the Fire Hole where it's warm and there are so many Sisters there and Big Sis and there are big flat rocks which are nice to sleep on and are warm. Do you want to come see it? Sunny and Luna said it was too hot to go in there but I don't know why. It's like a nice warm unless you touch the gooeyrocks as that's bad and Big Sis said not to do that because it hurts and it's bad so don't do that."

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The spring fairy blinked at Ashe's energy. She had only been alive for three years? That would explain a few things. Compared to fairies like her and Cirno, she was a small child. "So you've met Sunny and Luna, it seems..." She paused in thought, trying to comprehend what Ashe had said. "Fire hole?" So that confirmed her suspicion about her being tied to the element of Fire, assuming that by 'fire hole' she meant 'volcano'. "I guess I could come see it if you want me to..."

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Ashe nodded a bunch, "They're really smart and they know so many things. See this place has Bunnies and Flopsies and there is a house full of flopsies and a BIG flopsie. But there is my place so you get to see in the hole so let's go Lily!" She said as she took the Spring Fairy's hand and looked to be half running as she started to go seemingly without letting Lily catching up as she just seemed to be so eager to show her new friend everything! Although really Ashe looked to be running at full speed for everything that she did. Definitely one who leaps before she looks.

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Before she had a chance to protest, Ashe grabbed her hand and darted off, being forced to try and keep up with her, lest she lose sight of her. And if her behavior was anything to go by, she was bound to hurt herself at some point, like she had gotten herself stuck in that log. And what was that about gooey rocks? More to the point, what the heck was a 'flopsie'? Lily was unable to say anything, being forced to expend a lot of her energy on not being dragged along like a ragdoll.

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With Ashe she seemed to have two speeds, Stop and Full Speed ahead. And really being stuck in the log she would find her way out of it... Eventually. But still she's running, running past the occasional forest fairy and more fiery colored fairy as she continued to go seemingly in random directions for a bit before starting towards somewhere where the bamboo looked to be thinning out a bit as she almost tripped a few times before she called out loudly, "WE'RE HERE!!" She shouted as started to slow down and the temperature seemed to start getting a bit warmer. And there it was in the clearing, an open area as there were the Fire themed fairies floating in and out of the pit as the Fairies seemed to be playing around what looked to be a rather calm volcano. "See this is home!"

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Lily collapsed to the ground as Ashe finally stopped when she declared that they had arrived a little too energetically. "hah... hah... Are we?" she said, "I hadn't noticed..." All she was able to see was the ground. After a few minutes, she stood up again and looked around. It was only then that she realized that it was noticeably warmer than it was in the forest. "So this is what you call home," she said, "Looks pretty nice," It wasn't where she, personally, would make a home, but then again, she was a fairy of nature, not of fire.

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Ashe looked at Lily as she blinked a few times, "Yep this home!" She said as she walked to the edge of the volcano, her feet getting covered in fresh soot as she looked over the edge. If it was getting hot outside going over the edge seemed to make it even worse especially with the strong updraft coming along with it. Still if one were to brave the heat there they could see a number of fairies down there floating up and down and doing various games but most of them having colors associated with Fires. Definitely looks like a place where someone like Ashe would spawn from. Also beware of the occasional burnt out ember from a Fairy thinking they could carry objects from the forest into the Volcano.

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She followed Ashe over to the mouth of the volcano, brow already covered in sweat from the intense heat. "So this heat doesn't bother you?" she asked, removing her hat and shaking her hair out. If she found this heat unbearable, Cirno would probably not be able to survive, being a fairy of ice. It made sense for heat to not bother the fire fairies.

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Ashe blinked, "I like it! It's really warm and happy and Nice and it's home. Sunny said it was really hot so I guess it is but it's nice and warm for me. I Like warm things." She nodded as few times to emphasize it. "There is this big warm water place where you get in and ride it up and it's really fun and warm then you go SPLASH," She naturally moved her arms in response to make a splash, "in the water house near and then you get out. But you gotta wait a while to do the ride but it's super fun! But everyone else says it's not a good idea because it's really hot." Was she mentioning riding a Geyser or something? "But if you don't want to come in you don't have to because your hat might go flying and that would be bad as it's pretty and white and stuff."

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Truth be told, Lily wasn't worried about losing her hat. Hats were easily replaceable. She was more worried about suffering from burns of some sort. Though that 'water ride' DID sound like fun... wait... she was talking about a geyser, wasn't she? She was reminded of the Evil Spirit Geyser incident, when a geyser opened up a passage to the underground. She was familiar with hot springs, as there were some on Youkai Mountain, but having a geyser in one? That seemed like a recipe for bad things to happen if it went off at the wrong time...

Lily peered into the volcano. At the very bottom, she could see a little bit of magma glowing at the bottom. She could also see the fire fairies on various ledges, playing games or just chatting. She found the heat to be more unbearable than the cold, because with the cold, you can just put more layers on until you're comfy.

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Ashe waved to a few of her sisters floating up and out into the forest, "HI!" She called out and got waves back as she looked around a bit more, "You don't like the hot though so maybe we should go somewhere else... Maybe we can find bunnies or Flopsies! It's really hard to find Bunnies because they go and hop away really fast but Flospies don't hop a lot but they tend to like being around big holes. I don't know why flopsies are around holes though... I thought they'd fall in and get stuck."

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Perhaps by 'flopsie' she meant 'rabbit'. And she didn't blame them for running away. She'd run away from Ashe too if she were confronted with someone that energetic. In her looking down through the crater, she failed to notice what was going on above her... In particular, a fairy had come back carrying some bamboo, and it had already started to smolder and burn. One piece of it fell off and landed right on Lily's dress, catching it on fire. She didn't notice, however, because the air was already unreasonably warm around her...

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Ashe looked to Lilly as she heard something new and crackly. And then Ashe looked to Lily's outfit which wasn't white and red anymore... it was white and gray and orange and ON FIRE!!! "Lily... your dress is on fire!" Ashe said as she watched it burn, "I don't know how to stop fire!" She said as she started to panic and run in circles. She was a smoke fairy. She didn't know how to stop fire or anything. Her sister who had a bad habit of catching fire just extinguished naturally So the smoke fairy never figured how to make things stop burning. Thsi could be bad!

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Lily let out a confused 'Huh?' before turning around and noticing
HER DRESS WAS ON FIRE!
"AAAAAAAAA!" she screamed, quickly patting the area that had been lit aflame. The heat was making it hard to extinguish, and in moments of panic, people tended not to think too rationally. Realizing that the fire wasn't going out with just the patting, she instantly took to the skies, frantically scanning the landscape for a source of water. She spotted a hot spring in the area, and flew over there at a speed that Aya would be proud of. Not caring if anyone else was in the area, she dove headfirst into the spring, completely submerging herself in the water and earning her some strange looks from the other fairies there.

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Ashe paused as Lily started to pat out the fire then launched herself up like a Fairy Rocket to the skies as Ashe herself to the sky flying after Lily as she moved to the skies. The Smoke Fairy paused and followed the path as the fairy the smoke fairy followed the spring fairy and Ashe blinked as she eventually caught up and landed near the spring where she was at and the confused fairies who just effectively was cannonballed by the other fairy. "Um Lily? Are you okay?" She asked as she looked into the springs.

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What emerged was a soaking wet spring fairy in a half-burned dress. Her wings, instead of their usual fluffy texture, were now flat and heavy from the water. Her hair was plastered all over her face and her hat was floating a few meters away. She swam over and grabbed the hat, then climbed out of the hot springs. She squeezed the water out of her dress, then shook it loose to inspect the damage.

Her rapid flight had caused the smoldering to occur all around the edge of the dress, and due to how long it had been before she actually noticed, it was now more of a mini-skirt. Not exactly what you want when you're trying to show off grace.

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Ashe looked at Lily's state of messy outfit and blinked, "Are you okay?" She repeated as she looked just how soaked Lily was. And how her wings were so flattened that way looked just so weird compared to being so big and fluffy before, "Maybe we should get your wings all fluffy again." And Ashe learned that Fluffy Wings became not fluffy when wet and that was important. A pause, "Your dress looks silly now!" She said as she looked at the skirt being so burnt up. Thankfully, it looked like Lily herself wasn't that bad off though.

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"Oh great, I'm not going to be able to use this outfit anymore," she sighed, attempting to flap her wings, but finding them heavy and hard to move. She looked up as Ashe asked again if she was okay, "Oh... yeah, I'm fine... I've been in massive danmaku fights before, so the only thing that's hurt right now are my spirits..." Indeed, she's suffered through all number of attacks, including time-dilated knives, Fantasy Seals of all kinds, Master Sparks, as well as numerous other kinds of danmaku she didn't even know the name of. "Drying my wings off would be nice... Can't really fly with wet wings..."

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"Hm... Maybe if we put your wings over Home you'll get dry fast as when it's hot things get dry and then you can fly again!" Ashe said as if one could see the idea coming to her head as she looked to be a little excited, "And we can fix that and then we can find things to fix your dress and then stuff!" Just with how Ashe was looking she seemed to be one of those Fairies who never really ran out of energy well until she crashed. "Just don't get on fire this time then we'll be good!"


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