Urban Legends

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Urban Legends Preluding Lights
Annie icon.png
Old Ursine Woman icon.png
Old Granny
Male Lungmenite icon.png
Slum Dweller
RI Corridor
Living Room
Lungmen Uptown Night
Mansion Room
Bena finds Annie watching Kirara play games, and out of curiosity, Bena joins in too. Upon learning that the game is based on ghost stories, Bena tells a Victorian "ghost story" of her own to give Kirara a scare.
<Background black>
Rhodes Island Landship
Common Rest Area Passageway
<Background 1>
[Bena is walking at the corridors, searching for Annie.]
Bena Hrmm... Annie's off playing somewhere again...
And she didn't even bring me. Hrmph.
I'll sort her out in short order.
Oh, a fork in the road.
This way? Or that way?
Oh, forget it. Let's go with the old standby.
(Brings out a Victorian coin)
Bena, Bena, oh lost Miss Prim♪ Where to go? Just listen to♪ him♪
Here comes Sir Barkeley♪ The way is his whim♪
(Tosses coin)
(Picks up coin)
This way, all the way, then. Hm-hm, very well.
[Bena follows the direction shown by the coin...]
<Background 2>
[...which leads her to the R.I. landship's youth recreation area.]
Bena *sigh*–I can't believe there were spots this wonderful, and Iris never once mentioned them to me.
She clearly doesn't know Rhodes Island as well as she says, does she?
[Annie is standing nearby.]
Bena Aha! Found you!
Annie, you little–
Annie (Urging Bena to whisper)
Bena Hm?
Annie (Pointing at the person in front of the TV)
[The person being pointed by Annie is the Higashinese Aegir Kirara, who is immersed in playing a video game.]
Bena ?
(Whisper) Psst, what's she up to?
Annie Playing a game.
Bena A game? Aren't games supposed to be like chess, and swings, and building sandcastles, and other such things? Is this a game too?
Annie Mm.
Bena Oh–
[Kirara is apparently playing a horror video game, as the TV shows someone being pulled into a dark alley.]
Bena *shriek*! Did you just see a shadow pull someone off the screen into an alleyway?!
Annie Mm.
Bena My word, Grandmother would be furious if she knew we were watching this sort of thing!
Annie Mm.
Bena Hmm, now...
I do slightly want to play.
Annie Mm.
Bena Aha, I knew it!
No wonder I couldn't find you.
Why don't you put a word in with the nice lady, then?
Annie That'll scare her.
Bena Will it?
Annie It will.
Bena Then you'll just have to allow me.
After all, my play is your play.
Annie Yes.
More power to you.
Bena Oh, Annie, do you think I ought to put on a bit of a "show" here?
Annie Yes.
Bena Very well, as you wish.
<Background fades out and in>
Kirara (Almost at the final part. Still don't know if I can manage the true end.)
(I've gotten every collectible and every route, according to the guides.)
(Last step: beat the forced-loss fight.)
(I tried it while I was getting all the ending medals earlier, and couldn't pull it off.)
(I heard there was another phase transition to it, but I don't know if I can make it...)
Bena ~#¥%
Kirara (Takes off headphones)
H-Hello, did you need something?
(Uh oh, I'm not good with kids. This won't end well.)
Bena What are you doing, Miss?
Kirara P... Playing a game.
Bena A game? I love games too!
Can I play with you?
Kirara (Are all little kids so pushy these days?! Crap, what do I even do?)
(Can she actually play? Even if, I'm way into the endgame right now, and every enemy sucks to beat. I'm gonna feel terrible if she has a bad time and just drops the controller.)
Uh, um, er, this...
Bena Do you not like to play with others...?
Kirara (I–I-I-I-Is she about to cry?)
No–no, no!
We can play!
Bena Thank you, Miss, you're the best!
Kirara That's alright, heheh.
(Haven't I seen this kinda now-we're-friends scene in a dating sim before?)
(Whatever... I can just start a fresh run in a bit, since I've got the whole route down. Why not let her have a go–)
(No, wait!)
(This is an action-horror suspense game with , and ## and **! What was the rating, D or Z?!)
(I can't be letting a kid play this!)
Bena Miss?
Kirara Why don't we swap to another game, then? This one might be a little–
Bena I want to play this one.
Can I?
Kirara (Please, please, pick up what I'm putting out!)
If you're 100% sure, then it's not–like you technically can't. But...
Bena Really?! Thanks, Miss!
Kirara Um?
F–For what?
Bena Do you use this control gadget to play?
Kirara Um, huh? That's–I meant–
And you press on these buttons.[note 1]
Bena Wow! A monster appeared!
What an impressively gaping mouth! How fearsome!
Kirara Uh...
Just let me have the controller a sec!
(Pause menu, Settings, Game Options, turn off Blood SFX–)
(–and most importantly, "Disturbing Content": off!)
Bena Hrm? Why's the wide-mouthed fiend become so hazy?
Kirara Don't worry about it! Here's the controller.
Bena Alright. Thank you, miss~
Kirara (This kid seems alright, aside from being so, um, forward. She talks sense, and she's sweet.)
(If all my friends were that polite when I was young, I wonder if maybe I'd be riajuu[note 2] material now, like Utage?)
(Don't get carried away, Kirara. Like heck.)
<Background fades out and in>
[Bena enjoys the video game she is playing while being watched by Kirara.]
Bena Hrmph, hah, hey!
Kirara (She's almost to the final set piece battle.)
(Come to think of it, I just taught her how to use a controller.)
(And I only figured that combo out not too long ago.)
(How'd she learn it?)
(Could I have unleashed a dormant gamer god?)
(Is there finally someone who could help me clear the secret set piece in Toukouden 2 Tachibana Edition?)
(Nnn... can't be sure yet.)
(Let's see if she can get past the set piece in Nukenin's hidden route first.)
(Sawara the Silentious. Pretty tough to beat.)
Bena Oh, there's an animation.
Kirara (Here it is, the nighttime Saeki Crossing!)
[Bena is struggling.]
Bena Wh-Why can't I hack my way through?
I may be meant to flee.
Kirara (That's why people love Ringo Software. The way they connect and guide you through levels is so well-done, it clicks even for the littlest kids.)
Bena Ugh, how are there still monsters on the road? How obnoxious!
Kirara No rush, take it slow.
Careful. There'll be monsters from the car ahead and the stores streetside.
Right, right, right, for this set piece, you'll want to use the streetlamps to stall the big guy, if you can't afford to tank, and then you can sort out the mob.
Bena Errm.
Kirara Use that big tornado move to clear them away a little.
But don't use it too much. Save some SP for the set piece.
(Can she understand what I'm even saying?)
Bena Step over here, and then–like that.
Kirara (Seems she does.)
Bena Wagh, this is a dead end!
But it's got some room to maneuver.
Kirara You're in the set piece battle now. That one's usually invincible, but you can sac an item from your inventory at him and his invuln disappears.
Bena Which one?
Kirara This one, the "Sachet of Consecration". Equip to your inventory, then just use it like anything else.
Bena Do I take aim at him?
Kirara Mhm. You've got one chance.
Bena Very well.
–A deadeye hit!
Kirara The invuln barrier's gone. Now slam him with everything you've got.
Bena Very well!
Waargh, what speed!
Kirara You can-NOT lose, okay? You only get to do this fight once per save, and losing means doing the whole thing over again!
<Background fades out and in>
Fifteen minutes later...
Bena What do I do if I can't regenerate?!
Kirara Focus, he's low too!
Remember to evade and parry!
You can't block that one, jump away jump away!
Get him, get him!
Counter, nice! Chain a skill in!
Nice, nice, weak point! Hit it!
Bena Hei-yah!
Kirara Nice–niiiiiice!
You got the achievement–you got it, you got it!
Bena G-Got what?
Kirara The true end!
Bena True end? What do you mean, true end?
Didn't I just start playing a short while ago?
Kirara That's 'cause I was already in the back part.
Oh, the staff credits are rolling, perfect. Let me tell you how the story goes in the first part of the game.
Bena Very well.
I can't read the words, after all. I've little choice but to rely on your narration...
Kirara (That's true, there's no Victorian release of the game. Impressive she had the patience to play for so long...)
Ahem. The game's called Nukenin, and it's about a nukenin–like the name–who left his homeland to live in a new nomadic city, and the story that happens there.
Bena What's a nukenin?
Kirara They're... um... the nu-keh part is runaway, the nin is... they're assassins, killers from the shadows, does that make sense?
Bena Yes.
Kirara And while this assassin was serving his master, uh, his lord, he saw his lord getting killed, and then was framed for the deed. So he had no choice but to leave the land for somewhere real far away.
Bena And then?
Kirara So then he's where the story takes place, Shin-Aki City.
The city's an actual real one. My super-riajuu friend Utage sent me a postcard from there once.
The biggest thing about it is–all the ghost stories. Plenty of ghost stories all come from there.
And most of them are from after the city got wrecked by a Catastrophe and rebuilt.
Like station stops that don't actually exist, this kinda mysterious guy where if you don't give him water he follows you all the way home and drinks all the water there, Aki figurines that like wandering out and calling their owners when they get lost and then find their own ways back, stuff like that.
Bena (You hear that, Annie? The next time you go out to play, remember to call me.)
Annie (Yes.)
Kirara Really mystical ones, really especially scary ones.
Oh, the staff roll's over. Now it's mega-hyped secret ending time!
Mmnn... mm?
Right, that had foreshadowing!
Oh my-Oh my god, everything makes sense now!!
Bena Miss, what was that animation afterwards about?
Kirara It all makes sense. You know how I just said the assassin moved to a new city? So, because he was such an expert at assassination and investigation, he started up this detective agency.
And the big guy we just defeated in that set piece was called Sawara the Silentious, the oldest ghost story of Shin-Aki City.
They say that at night, at the busiest crossing in the Saeki district, if you cross alone, you run into this Higashi ronin dressed in ancient clothes.
He uses sign language to ask you something, and if you can't answer him, don't respond or try to run, he'll hunt you down and kill you. You end up in the endless icefields, or he goes down.
Bena My, does that really happen?
Kirara I dunno either. Utage said the crossing in Saeki's all full of fun and excitement, and there's people drinking at every sake joint, and once they're done with one, they move onto the next, and then it's next morning and they just go back home and change clothes and go straight to work. Nobody's ever seen any kinda mute ronin.
Bena Socky joint? They serve drinks and sell socks in your country?
Kirara Y–Yeah...
Anyway! This game's last hidden ending tells you that every ghost story in the entire city was descended from the oldest one, and then they spread out like tree roots.
Sawara wanted this Higashi place to become a city of ghost stories that outsiders would never see, and with that as his main thing, in the end he wanted to turn all of Higashi into a ghostly paradise!
Unfortunately, he met the protag, a guy from outside who probed out the whole thing.
In the end, Protag beats the original ghost story, finds out the city's secret, and the whole tree of stories falls apart, turning the city back to normal.
Bena Simply because he won the "set piece"?
Kirara Because ghost stories need enough mystery to last in people's minds. That's how they survive and get passed on.
If their true natures are revealed, the mystery disappears, and a million ghost stories lose their foundations all at once.
Their whole reason to exist is gone.
Bena (Oh? Oh-ho–)
Annie (......)
Bena (What a coincidence, I'd like a few things to "last" in this lady's mind too.)
(Here's my plan of action.)
You seem very happy, Miss.
Kirara We beat the hidden route! No duh I'm happy! Super-happy, tera-happy!
Ahh–and I have no idea my new games are gonna get here–
I guess I'll head back to the dorms–
Bena Miss, might you wait a moment?
Kirara Hm?
Bena I'd like to tell you a story too. Would that agree with you?
You've told me so much, and I haven't given you one word. I feel quite awkward for that.
Oh, do wait a moment. You must be thirsty, Miss. I'll bring you a cup of water.
Kirara (Man, there she is... stepping up again...)
(What's going on?)
(Am I popular now?)
Here's your water.}}
Kirara Thanks~
Bena (Bait taken~)
Well, then. Let me tell you a ghostly story of a Victorian city in exchange.
As a...
Annie (Thank-you.)
Bena Thank-you.
Kirara Oh, sure.
It's not everyday someone wants to talk to me.
Oh, yeah! I'm Kirara. What do you want me to call you?
Bena Can I tell you this tale before I answer?
Kirara Sure.
Bena Hee-hee. Thank you, Miss.
This story begins in Victoria, in a place named Lyndon–
<Background 3>
[Someone resembling Bena (or possibly Bena herself?) is standing in a slum as the rain falls.]
??? It's raining again…
And I don't know where Mum and Dad are...
Oh, well. I needn't wonder about them. They don't mean as much as a bowl of hot soup would.
[A slum dweller angrily barges out of his home..]
Slum Dweller Hey, you Caprinae scamp. What are you hanging outside my door for?
??? Getting out of the rain. What else could I do?
Slum Dweller Tch, you have the balls to sit right here when you can't even speak Victorian clearly? Go back to Leithanien where you came from.
??? ......
Slum Dweller Did you not understand me? Get lost, you're not welcome at my door.
??? I'm just sitting here to avoid the rain. I'm not coming inside your home.
Slum Dweller Don't know when to give up, do you?! Bloody prick! I can handle a scolding from that bloody long-horns foreman, but you think you can talk back to me, you little shit?
Get out of my sight and never come back!
[The slum dweller pushes off the Caprinae girl, causing her to fell to the ground, and returns to his home, closing the door in anger.]
??? Urgh...
It hurts...
[The Caprinae girl rises up.]
??? ......
Let's shelter somewhere else...
If it comes to the worst...
Dropping from the city's edge... shouldn't hurt too much…
[The sound of someone falling to the ground is heard.]
??? Hm?
Has someone fallen over there too?
It seems to be... an old lady?
[The Caprinae girl rushes to the source of the sound, which is revealed to be an old lady.]
??? Eek!
Granny, granny, are you alright?
Old Granny Thank you, little lamb. There are so few children who would help an old lady up these days.
Oh, the children here. All they know is to ask me for apples. Not a soul in sight the moment I'd like a little help from them.
It's not often there's a child as kind to others as you. How good of you, how wonderful.
??? Granny, your clothes are dirty.
Old Granny And yours, little lamb. Look, you've even gotten hurt here.
??? I'll be alright. It'll wash away in the rain.
Old Granny You silly lamb. What if you caught a cold, drenched like this?
Hurry on back, now. I live quite close, and as rickety as I am, I can always make it home by myself.
Don't make your family worry.
??? I... haven't got one...
My Mum and Dad asked me to wait for them at a fountain square, and then I never saw them again.
Old Granny Well, dearie me. Poor little lamb.
Coincidentally, I live all by myself, I do, and it's very lonely. Would you mind a bit of a chat with an old woman like me?
??? A chat...? I don't see why not.
(At least I can get out of the rain.)
Old Granny Hoho, thank you, little lamb.
??? What's wrong, Granny?
Old Granny I'm old, is what it is. Beyond repair.
Little lamb, could I trouble you to carry my fruit basket for me?
It's all full of apples I picked not a bit earlier. Oh, slipping over, carrying this heavy basket all the while. My arms and legs just don't have the strength.
You're strong, little lamb. Could you help me?
??? I'll take over for you, Granny.
<Background fades out and in>
??? Say, Granny.
Old Granny What is it?
??? Why would you go apple-picking on a rainy day? With rains as stormy as this, wouldn't it be better to stay in?
Old Granny Hohoho, you don't understand, little lamb.
Only the apples washed by rain like this are the good, strong and sweet ones.
<Background fades out and in>
??? Granny, is this the place?
Old Granny Yes, it is.
Just wait one moment. Let me find my key.
Here it is.
Come in, little lamb.
Welcome home.
<Background 4>
??? Why, how warm!
A-And how pretty!
Old Granny Hohoho, I do like hearing a little flattery every now and then.
Now just hold still.
??? Ah! My wound–it's stopped hurting?
Old Granny Though I've not much ability to speak of, I can find it in me to heal the little scrapes.
Would you like to change into something pretty?
??? Mm-hm!
Old Granny Then follow me, it's right upstairs.
<Background fades out and in>
??? It's so–dark in here.
Old Granny This is where my darling granddaughter rests, after all.
??? Rests? Granny, weren't you the only person here?
Old Granny Yes, I've always been the only "person" here.
Come, meet my darling granddaughter.
??? This?
A doll? About as tall as me, and so finely detailed.
Old Granny This is my granddaughter. Her name, you know, is Annie, an adorable Caprinae.
Just like you.
You see, I've always been looking for something, and today I finally found it in you, little lamb.
You've already helped so much. Granny is so very thankful.
Now, could you help me with one final thing?
??? Anything, Granny.
Old Granny Oh, thank you, you darling little lamb.
Well, then, please, close your eyes.
Little lamb, now.
Take your delectable, kindly soul–
–and hand it out.
<Background 2>
Bena They say there's been cases of orphan abduction like that all over Victoria.
Occasionally, someone sees the old woman taking away an orphan, and all say after that night, they never see the orphan again.
As one might imagine, the policemen never found anything much. They'd go knocking, and find either there were no old people at that house, or it would just be empty.
Though, one wrinkle is that every home had a doll named Annie.
Kirara I-Is that the end?
Bena Yes, the end.
What do you think, Miss Kirara?
Kirara I-It's pretty good.
Bena It's an old yarn in Victoria at this point. I hear the cities have several variations on it, like–
Kirara That's okay! Thank you!
Bena If you're not fond of it, I won't tell.
But, you know, no matter how the story changes, there's one thing that always stays the same.
Kirara Y-You can stop–I-I'm really not good with this sort of thing.
Bena But you're fine with it in a game?
Kirara Playing a game is another thing!
Bena That does make sense, I suppose.
In that case–
Annie, come say hello.
Kirara !
Annie Hello, Miss Kirara.
I am Annie.
[Kirara runs off in fear, realizing that Bena's stories turned out to be seemingly true.]
Bena ......
Hee-hee, that never stops being fun.
What do you think? I'd say I was quite the performer.
Annie ......
Bena What is it?
Annie You went too far, Bena.
Bena Oh, relax, you. I'll give Miss Kirara a proper apology later.
Annie Also.
Bena What else could there be?
Annie You forgot to tell her.
Your name.
Bena My word!
Ugh, no need to get pernickety over that. I'll introduce myself when the time comes.
Annie ......
You made that up, just now?
Bena That I did. I've got far better storytelling chops than Iris does, you know.
Annie Granny will be upset, telling stories like that.
You didn't make her evil enough.
Bena Excuse meee–? Was that not evil enough? I think I've already made Grandmother out to be plenty rotten.
Oh... now that you say it, I suppose I can see it lacking a little.
Grandmother told me at first, if I'd run off with that basket that day, those five apples would've been my very last meals.
And that wicked trap after she led me into the dining hall, then went to take a bath and change. If I so much as took a bite of the feast in there, I'd be sent right back out onto that stormy street before I could blink.
Now that was certainly real. I remember it even now.
That left some very murky shadows on my young heart!
Annie What Granny says is the truth.
Bena I wouldn't say she's rotten, otherwise!
I haven't even a clue how Granny first entered the Castle of Dreams.
Perhaps because she was a bad good person.
Just like me.
Annie You're not bad.
Bena Hrmph. What makes you think to try and grovel to me now?
Be good and confess, Annie. Did you or did you not play this game beforehand?
Annie I did.
Bena Then what was on your mind, dragging me here too?
Annie I played it before. It was fun.
I wanted you to play it too.
Bena I see, I see. So that's why the game controls felt so familiar to me.
How many hours did you spend on it?
Annie Three nights, twenty-four hours.
Bena Twenty-four?! Did you sneak out at bedtime? Grandmother really will be mad!
Annie I have you. I'm not scared.
Bena Hm...
Come over, Annie.
Annie Mm.
Bena Here, sit by my side.
We may have just passed this level, but we haven't touched the previous one at all.
Teach me very carefully, one-on-one, okay?
Annie Mm.
Bena And another thing. What did Miss Kirara mean with the "set piece" she kept going on about?
Annie Boss.
Bena Oh, so that's all it was. And here I thought it was some strange new thing.
Annie It's started.
Bena Oh, yes. Let's focus on the gaming, now.
What would you say? Do you think our scaring of Miss Kirara might really take root in her country, sprout forth into a new "ghost story," perhaps?
Annie Focus, Bena.
Bena O-Oh, very well. Sorry.
It's a push of this button, isn't it.
Game, start.


  1. Due to an oversight, this like is spoken by Bena in-game; given the context, it would be more appropriately spoken by Kirara.
  2. Japanese: リア充; A Japanese internet slang for one with a good, normal life.