A vegetable for yukkuris
Story starts with an explanation of how yukkuris are pests towards farmers by attacking the fields, and how difficult it is to find their nests and conduct a complete extermination. Even so, new clans will eventually move in. Attempts to use yukkuricide failed when pet owners fed the treated vegetables to their pet yukkuris without knowing. Still, there are many other tactics used.
In a certain village surrounded by mountains, the nearby clan of yukkuris have a good relationship with the villagers due to their excellent elder. The wild yukkuris tend to the fields by watering the crops and eating the pests, and in exchange, the villagers protect the clan and give them the vegetables they can't sell. These yukkuris work under the direction of the pet yukkuris of the villagers.
A wild Meiling is visiting her friend Yuuka, who's a pet yukkuri. Yuuka shows Meiling the crops they're harvesting, explaining each one to the spicy yukkuri as they stack them on top of her. On their way back, Meiling asks about an odd plant in the distance, but Yuuka warns with alarm that that plant is not to be eaten.
They return to the home of Yuuka's owner and have their meal, and spent time chatting afterwards. Suddenly, a yukkuri's scream interrupts them, but Yuuka and her owner brush it off as little ones playing, closing the curtains to block it out. Meiling later goes back with some food, and a warning to be careful in the dim light.
Some time previously, after the wild yukkuris stopped working the fields, a family of four yukkuris reveal themselves and make the home declaration, sneering at the wild yukkuris for working hard. These scum yukkuris are attracted to the sweet smell of the same odd plant that Meiling noticed, and pass up all the other vegetables for it.
There's a brief mention of Reimu's life before then, about how she grew up surrounded by scum, and was cast out of the clan for punishing a scum family who was hoarding food before meeting Marisa, and now they're laughing at the clan since they can take it easy now. The truth is then revealed; Reimu was lazy and didn't want to work, broke into a neighbor's house, killed the yukkuris and ate their food, and would have been killed for it if the elder didn't decree to banish her instead.
After they eat, Reimu talks to her family, who are strangely silent. Angry at being ignored, she hops around to look at them, and is shocked to see that they have stalks growing throughout their body, even in their eye sockets. Telling them to sacrifice themselves for her, she runs...
Or tries to. The plant stalks are already rooted around her strongly, and they seal her mouth and pierce her eyes, as well as disposing of her hair and accessory. But Reimu can't die; even as the plant drains her bean paste and replaces it with something else, her paste core remains unhurt, and she's kept conscious, her emotions going back and forth between wanting to die and wanting to be saved, unable to go insane. This makes her insides extremely sweet, which is the source of the smell.
Another family of yukkuris come and make their home declarations. Attracted by the smell Reimu is putting out, they start eating her, and while she's torn between wanting to die and not wanting to die, they finally eat her paste core and end her life.
Yuuka and her owner come to the field the next day, confirming their suspicions that scum yukkuris came. They discuss the plant, and admire the beautiful flower it has put out... a deadly flag of death to scum.
Illustration: post #25311