There wasn’t much that could awaken a slumbering Oni from her bed, aside from the blaring sound of an alarm clock apparently
Ibuki’s room was a simple-looking one. A single pair of drawers where she kept all of her clothes, a desk along with a small bookcase werqe sitting in the corner of the room and her bed in the corner opposite it. She had wisely decided to bring only the necessities from her village when she’d first moved into Masahiro a couple of months back. It wasn’t like she had a lot to bring with her in the first place anyways, Ibuki had always preferred the simple lifestyle she lived back in her village. In Tokyo though, everything was usually very complicated and time-consuming. The Oni had learnt this fact the hard way on her very first day in the city when she had casually taken a couple of apples from outside of the grocery shop, assuming they were free like they normally would be back in her village. Thankfully, the police had let her off with a warning after she had returned the goods.
Rubbing the sleep out of her eyes, Ibuki dragged herself out of bed and over to her school uniform that she had neatly laid out the night previously. After collecting it, the young demon practically sleepwalked out of her room and into the communal baaathroom that all the tenants shared. The bathroom itself was big enough to hold three people at once, maybe four if everyone in there squeezed together.
“Morning, Ibuki!” came an energetic-sounding voice, despite the fact that it was before eight in the morning.
Ibuki sleepily nodded in response and turned towards the sound of the voice that belonged to a headless body of a young woman who looked like she was in her early twenties. The body itself was dressed in a pair of pale blue pyjamas that were slightly too big for it. Held tightly in its hands was the owner of the body. Well her head at least. Her eyes were a brilliant shade of green and her straight shoulder-length was a sleek, shiny black colour.
“Hi Chie, you’re up pretty early” Ibuki yawned, wondering where her fellow tenant got her energy from. “You working today?”
“That's right” the woman replied, leaning against the doorframe of her room. “Thought I’d go in a little earlier today. My higher-ups are pretty strict about tardiness, you know”
“Not really. I have to work hard and dedicate myself to getting that promotion, so I can finally move out of this place!"
For as long as Ibuki had known her, Chie had always wanted a place of her own. The Dullahan had moved into Masahiro just because it was closer to her workplace, which was an accounting firm a couple of minutes away. How she motivated herself to go through all of that trouble just for her new job was well beyond Ibuki’s knowledge, but the headless beauty always seemed to have such a large amount of optimism it was almost unsettling at times.
“Oh yeah” Chie started, grabbing Ibuki’s attention. “My family sent me some clothes from the countryside but they’re too big on me, so I was wondering if you wanted them. They’re pretty cute”
Despite the offer, Ibuki knew that any clothing that was ‘too big’ on Chie was going to be laughably small on herself. Finding clothes that fit and were stylish proved increasingly difficult when you were an Oni. Many women’s clothing stores didn’t hold products meant for ridiculously tall girls with broad shoulders and rapidly-developing muscles. Ibuki even tried Harajuku, but she still could not find anything comfortable and trendy in her size. As a result, most of her wardrobe consisted of men’s clothing.
Silently cursing her Oni blood for her tall stature and wide shoulders, Ibuki quickly declined Chie’s offer. It was a pleasant gesture, but she was positive that her friend’s clothes would tear if she ever tried to squeeze into them.
After leaving Chie to do her thing and a quick shower, Ibuki found herself back in her room attempting to tie the ribbon on her school uniform. A task that she struggled with almost every morning before Hanako or Kaori intervened. After failing for the umpteenth time, she remembered the large, heavy glaive that was sitting in her wardrobe. A family heirloom that had been passed down for generations back in her village. The blade of the weapon was made from a rare red metal that was forged by the founder of her village. The polearm-like body of the weapon was created from a more common steel and it was practically covered in various charms and bracelets from her people. The decorations apparently gave the weapon its destructive power and made it impossible for anybody other than an Oni to wield it with ease.
Ibuki preferred it more as a decoration in her room than an actual weapon, but she still carried it with her everywhere just in case an emergency arose.
Better to be safe than sorry.
After chanting a quick enchantment in her native tongue, the weapon became invisible to any humans. Monsters however, were still perfectly capable of seeing it. It was a helpful little spell that was capable of manipulating what humans could and couldn’t see. Chie had taught her it a while back and the Oni assumed that her friend used it make it appear as if her head was constantly attached onto her shoulders.
Picking up the heirloom and her school bag, Ibuki headed downstairs to face the day. Still feeling slightly irritated from waking up too early and realising that she had actually gotten a little taller since she’d last measured herself.
Well, at least the walk to school wouldn’t be so lonely anymore at least. Not with Niko around anyways.