Just the Number of Memories
The story begins with a Reimu trying to get the attention of its female owner, but is unable to move or say anything. The reason for that starts one week ago.
Miss came back to find her gold badge Reimu in her kitchen, a place she banned it from, and eating the snacks in there, making a mess. It reacted hostilely when she tried to talk to it, and when it called her a shitty slave, Miss lost her temper and slapped Reimu. Panicking over her reaction, she went to get the yukkuri first aid kit, not noticing Reimu picking up a kitchen knife. She turned around just as Reimu tells her to die. Reimu then turned its back on the collapsed body and continued to eat.
(Reimu believes that since it does ALL the work of letting Miss take it easy, it should be allowed to take it easy)
A few days later, Reimu is wondering when Miss went, having been missing for the past few days. When Miss returns with a bandaged left hand, having been hospitalized for the past few days, Reimu immediately demands that she bow down and apologize for being late, demanding sweets as apology. Miss offers it lemon candies, and Reimu happily devours them, drifting off to sleep.
Reimu wakes up on the present day, and finds itself stuck to a board with its mouth jammed up. It tries to get Miss's attention, but she just ignores it and continues to go about her chores, and Reimu fears that it'll be left like this, when Miss comes up and tells Reimu that THEY will be watching the house today, and brings Reimu to her room.
Miss asks if Reimu recalls when it first came to her house when she had just bought it. Back then, it didn't know how to avoid the furniture, so it knocked into things a lot.
"Something, like this."
Miss begins hitting Reimu with a ruler, making Reimu emit muffled screams as it recalls the pain of that time.
"When was that time, when you got burned by the iron?"
With her right hand, Miss presses the iron to Reimu's left cheek, forcing it to relive the childhood trauma when it touched a hot iron out of curiosity.
"Hey, did you know? It takes a lot of time for a yukkuri to die from heat."
Miss tells Reimu, explaining that there's no loss of paste, and the heat takes 20-30 minutes to reach the paste core. She had a lot of time to look up this sort of stuff while she was hospitalized.
"You want to know why this is happening to you, right? I'll tell you after I'm done burning the other cheek."
Reimu's muffled scream continues for another 15 minutes, before Miss removes the iron. She asks Reimu if it recalled what happened a week ago, when Reimu stabbed her with a kitchen knife, and holds up her left hand in front of Reimu's eyes. She has lost her ring finger.
Back then, the pain of it caused Miss to faint, and by the time she reached the hospital, it was too late to reattach it, and Miss was saddened by that.
"But what made me saddest, was when Reimu told me to die... just when you were about to kill me."
"That's why I decided to punish Reimu. I decided to take back EVERYTHING I've done for you."
Miss is referring to all the times she treated Reimu after Reimu got hurt.
"Because, if you're around, I won't ever be able to be happy again, you know?"
Her intention clear, Miss asks Reimu if it recalls the time it hurt its eye, and rips out Reimu's left eye, the one it hurt when it banged into a toy.
"Your accessory got damaged before."
"Didn't your hair get pulled out once?"
"Oh yes, you hurt your ear before too."
Finally, Miss asks Reimu if it understands what this is all about, and unblocks Reimu's mouth by cutting it open with the same kitchen knife. After finally letting out a long scream, Reimu starts to apologize, for doing bad things, for being selfish, for saying bad words, for hurting Miss.
"You finally said 'Sorry', Reimu."
Hearing that, Miss pulls back the knife, and Reimu believes that now that it has apologized, Miss will go back to being the same kind Miss, and they would live happily once again.
"But you know, Reimu."
But she doesn't understand why Miss isn't smiling, but sad, as Miss raises the knife again.
"It's, already too late."
The sound of the knife cutting through the air sounds once more, like it did a week ago, bringing an end to Reimu and Miss's memories together.
Illustration: post #18445