Questionable Days with Yokai — Volume 2
Note: This recap includes spoilers for the first volume of Questionable Days with Yokai. I recommend you read through volume 1 before you start reading volume 2.
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Risako Kitamura (北村 理紗子) – A third-year in high school. Resolute and confident, but also impulsive. She likes to read, and to hang out with friends at karaoke bars. Not too popular, but an okay student. She went to a certain old mansion in the mountains to spend summer vacation with her grandmother—but a curse caused her to swap bodies with a boy named Yasuo Mizutani, and they ended up in a hidden realm of yokai. With her newfound magical onmyodo powers, she takes it upon herself to become a hero who will gather the five powerful magatama, which have the potential to undo her curse and free all the imprisoned creatures. She gained the magatama of ambition from Naoya the wheel monk. At the moment, she is in a great deal of danger.
Yasuo Mizutani (水谷 泰生) – A third-year in high school. Flexible and amicable, but also indecisive. He is on the school’s kendo team. Not a great student, but kind of popular. After his girlfriend Kokone broke up with him (apparently shaken by his psychic potential), he decided to go to a certain old mansion in the mountains to see if he could learn to control his unrealized onmyodo powers (and perhaps learn about the jade green magatama his grandfather had given him). Unfortunately a curse caused him to swap bodies with a girl named Risako Kitamura, and they ended up in a hidden realm of yokai. He cooperated with Risako in her magatama-gathering efforts, but found himself preferring to spend his time with a kitsune named Eisuke.
Akemi (明美) – A river otter yokai, AKA a kawauso that can magically take on a human form. After they switched minds, Risako and Yasuo found the otter as a wooden statue in the mansion garden. Akemi told them they could undo the curse with the power of five magical magatama, and led them down to the hidden yokai realm—AKA the underground prison. Assigned the yokai emissary by the realm’s creator (the onmyoji Ichijo no Shunzai), Akemi was the only creature who could freely travel in and out of the prison. She is secretly Risako’s grandmother, and seeks to gain Ichijo no Shunzai’s power for her own mysterious purposes.
Eisuke (瑛介) – A fox yokai, AKA a kitsune capable of shape-shifting and possibly other fearsome abilities. For centuries he has worked at Tsutomu the crow-tengu’s inn as a chef, preparing all kinds of delicious traditional Japanese dishes. Curious about the arrival of humans in the underground prison, Eisuke took a liking to Yasuo in particular (though Eisuke only knew him as “Risako” at first). He ended up saving Yasuo from a furious gang of kappa, and hid with him at a private shrine Eisuke apparently once ran long ago. Later, Eisuke kissed Yasuo, and Yasuo liked it.
Tsutomu (勉) – A kind of crow-man yokai, AKA a karasu tengu. He looks like a fierce and imposing bodybuilder with the head and wings of a great bird of prey. Though once a brutal warrior, Tsutomu has spent most his centuries in the underground prison listlessly running a sleepy inn. He and Eisuke aren’t close friends, but they keep each other company as fellow loners. After losing his cool one hopeless night, Risako saved his life, and the two had a bit of a heart-to-heart.
Naoya (直弥) – A fiery wagon-wheel yokai with a monk’s head, AKA a wanyudo (or “wheel monk”). One of the three wardens for the underground prison, safeguarding the magatama of ambition. He lived for nothing but the thrill of dashing about, endlessly determined to become the fastest yokai in the realm once more. In the end he lost the big yearly race, but under Risako’s training he learned to find other things to live for. Unfortunately, Akemi the otter killed him shortly thereafter, and devoured his corpse to gain the latent power of Ichijo no Shunzai he was imbued with from centuries of carrying a magatama.
Fumi (歩美) – A femme fatale yokai known as the yuki onna (or “snow woman”), who could be considered the embodiment of intense winter blizzards. One of the three wardens for the underground prison, safeguarding the magatama of love. She is a force to be reckoned with, capable of wielding incredible ice magic. She is also eternally and insanely devoted to her beloved Ichijo no Shunzai, whom she is desperate to reunite with. Unfortunately, Fumi currently believes Risako (as “Yasuo”) is the reincarnation of Ichijo no Shunzai.
Shuhei (修平) – An unnaturally large and powerful kappa (or “river child”), a kind of turtle-goblin yokai. One of the three wardens for the underground prison, safeguarding the magatama of hate. He leads an extensive gang of regular-sized (but still vicious) kappa. There is arguably nobody worse in all the underground prison to cross paths with than Shuhei. Risako picked a fight with him, but it was Yasuo who ended up blinding him in a surprise attack. Shuhei vows to have his revenge, and is now using the ghost of Kokone Amari to find Yasuo. Shuhei has figured out that Risako is Yasuo, and vice-versa.
Ichijo no Shunzai (春材 一條) – The onmyoji (or “yin-and-yang master”) who performed the incredible magic that created the hidden yokai realm known as the underground prison. At some point he became a todaiki, AKA a candlestick demon, hidden deep inside a mountain within the otherworldly realm. He possesses the magatama of sorrow. It was believed that Yasuo Mizutani is the descendant of Ichijo, but in actuality Yasuo is the descendant of Ichijo’s greatest nemesis: the famous (or infamous?) onmyoji Abe no Seimei. Ichijo no Shunzai has lost all hope, as it appears his fabricated realm will soon unravel. He can see that his emissary (Akemi) has betrayed him, that Risako is a pawn for the otter’s plot, and that he can no longer rely on those to whom he entrusted his other four magatama.
Kokone Amari (甘利 心寧) – A third-year in high school. Yasuo Mizutani was her boyfriend, but she broke up with him at the start of summer vacation. Things just weren’t working out between them? Curiously though, her spirit has been found wandering in the underground prison, ominously repeating the name of her ex. But by that point, Yasuo had already hidden away in Eisuke’s shrine—so Shuhei the kappa found ghost-Kokone first, and gave her the magatama of hate...
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The Five Magatama
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The pale yellow magatama – Crafted from Ichijo no Shunzai’s ambition. Naoya the wheel monk was entrusted with it. After Risako helped him train for a big race, Naoya passed it on to her.
The icy blue magatama – Crafted from Ichijo no Shunzai’s love. Fumi the yuki onna was entrusted with it. She agreed to pass it on to Risako and Yasuo if they proved to have a strong romantic bond. But they failed their test, and in a rage she tried to kill them.
The crimson red magatama – Crafted from Ichijo no Shunzai’s hate. Shuhei the kappa was entrusted with it. He agreed to pass it on to Risako if she managed to defeat him in a duel... but she failed—and due to Yasuo’s interference (a surprise attack that left Shuhei blinded), Shuhei vowed to torture them to death. When his hench-kappa came across the wandering spirit of a girl repeating Yasuo’s name, Shuhei gave her the magatama in hopes that it would fuel her hatred and embolden her to find and haunt her ex.
The clear glass magatama – Crafted from Ichijo no Shunzai’s sorrow. The onmyoji kept this magatama for himself, believing the emotion powering it would be too overwhelming for anyone else to carry for an extended period of time. He has hidden himself within a mountain in the underground prison for nearly a millennium now, but maintains a general awareness of what is going on in his magically fabricated realm. Risako has yet to pinpoint the location of Ichijo and the magatama he carries.
The jade green magatama – It is unknown what emotion of Ichijo no Shunzai’s this was crafted from. This was the only magatama to ever leave the hidden yokai realm. Currently it is in the possession of Yasuo Mizutani, who was given it by his grandfather when he was a young child. Akemi suggested Yasuo give the magatama to Risako Kitamura (who could potentially use it to help her locate the missing magatama), but Yasuo denied them this. Risako later told Akemi that she is willing to take it by force if she must.
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