Deep underneath Gensokyo, in what used to be hell, youkai who are shunned by other youkai are exiled, living in relative peace amongst themselves, but even these youkai create pariahs. The Komeiji sisters, the elder Satori and the younger Koishi, are hated and feared by the rest of the Underground youkai for their ability to read the hearts and minds of others. They live in the Palace of the Earth Spirits with each other and with the hoard of animals they care for, who are by contrast overjoyed at people who can understand their thoughts. However, while Satori is mostly content with her isolated life, Koishi wants desperately for others to like her as well, and she seals her third eye, locking away her powers and her connection to her sister. This act will start a chain of events that puts their little family through immense struggles, and will forever change them and the Underground as a whole.
At Chirei is a Touhou doujin created by Karaage Tarou, serving as a prequel to the 11th game Subterranean Animism. It consists of three chapters, covering the immediate aftermath of Koishi leaving, the intervention of the Moriya goddesses, and the far larger final chapter detailing Satori and Koishi's reconciliation and Okuu gaining her new power. It can be purchased from Karaage's blog or pixiv, or read online at Dynasty Scans.
At Chirei contains the following tropes:
- Accidental Misnaming: Koishi calls Parsee "Percy".Parsee: I'm not some locomotive with a face!
- All of the Other Reindeer: Why Koishi seals her third eye.
- An Odd Place to Sleep: Kisume sleeps inside her bucket.
- Armor-Piercing Question: "Why are you crying?"
- Artificial Limbs: After an accident Okuu loses a foot in bird form. When in human form she manifests a concrete foot as a replacement (in canon she got both the leg of fusion and leg of fission after absorbing the Yatagarasu).
- Art-Style Dissonance: While not completely bleak, At Chirei is far more intense and sad than Karaage's usual cutesy Slice of Life and Shipping doujins, all of which use the same art style.
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Koishi only acts on her subconscious after all."Whoa! 's daark! Where are we? Ooh! The sky! I'm huungry!"
- Bandage Mummy: Okuu at one point.
- Can't Hold Her Liquor: Parsee.Yuugi: Okay, who's been makin' that one drink?
Yamame: You have.
- Be Yourself: What Satori says to Okuu to try and convince her not to use her new powers (that, and the possibility that it will end in disaster).
- Bittersweet Ending: Satori and Koishi will never have the same connection they used to, but they're building a new connection instead.
- Brutal Honesty: Yuugi specialises in this (oni hate liars, after all), but at least she has more tact than Parsee.
- Cast Herd: Featuring the Palace of the Earth Spirits cast herd, with minor roles by the rest of the SA herd.
- Cat Smile: Orin has this permanently in cat form, predictably, and she and Okuu do it a several times in human form.
- Cool Big Sis: Yuugi, to Satori.
- Comes Great Responsibility: What the Yatagarasu tries to teach Okuu. She doesn't listen.
- Comically Missing the Point: Okuu still thinks that she got her human form from the god of eggs.
- Conveniently Coherent Thoughts: Satori, of course. Canon implies that reading someone's heart and mind is a lot more abstract than simple sentences, however.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?:
"The inside of my head is light... like it's gone somewhere. The old me is gone. She's gone somewhere else, far away."
- Koishi's condition is very reminiscent of dementia.
- The drama of Koishi leaving plays out exactly like a divorce, with poor Okuu and Orin as the children caught in the middle.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: Okuu shows the early signs of her eventual megalomania when she express how good it feels to fire off a few rounds from her Arm Cannon.
- Dysfunction Junction: Milder than most examples, but they could seriously use some therapists in the Underground.
- Elemental Embodiment: Yatagarasu, as a sun god, appears as an ambulatory mass of lava.
- Eye Scream: Koishi tears out the connecting wire of her third eye to her head, leaving a bright white scar.
- Flower in Her Hair: Koishi reunites with Satori by giving her a flower crown.
- Foregone Conclusion: Orin and Okuu get human forms, Koishi leaves her sister to explore the surface, and Okuu absorbs the Yatagarasu.
- Friend to All Living Things: "Anyone who's liked by animals has gotta be a good person."
- Fusion Dance: Power Booster form, with the Yatagarasu absorbed by Okuu and living on inside her.
- Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Parsee's response to a crying Koishi is to punch her. And kick her. And throw her off of the bridge...
- The Glomp: Courtesy of Orin, complete with sound effect.
- Group Hug: All four of them, before they bid Koishi farewell.
- Hanging Our Clothes to Dry: Koishi after taking an involuntary dip in the river.
- Hot Springs Scene
- How Do I Shot Web?: Okuu's first attempts to control The Power of the Sun don't go well.
- Important Haircut: Koishi gets one of these near the end.
- In-Series Nickname: Okuu and Orin, like canon, with the addition of "Yata-kun" for Yatagarasu.
- Ironic Echo: "Back then we had words for just the two of us."
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Non-romantic version, with Okuu and Orin's motivations revolving around doing anything to make Satori and Koishi happy.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Parsee deals out some good advice mixed in with all the insults.
- Jumped at the Call:Yatagarasu: All you need to do is ask, young lady, and the power of the god-bird, the great Yatagarasu, will be yours!
Okuu: Okay, gimme!
Yatagarasu: That was fast! At least think a bit first!
- Man on Fire: Okuu spontaneously ignites after simply touching the Yatagarasu, and afterwards before she gains control of her new power.
- Meaningful Background Event: As Satori, Orin and Okuu praise "the god of eggs" for giving Okuu a human form, Kanako and Suwako can be seen hidden in the stained glass windows.
- Mood Whiplash: The shift from silly and irreverent to depressingly serious and back again is as jarring as it is magnificent.
- Minimalist Cast: Aside from some animals and some nameless oni in a few panels at the beginning, only twelve characters appear at all — Satori, Koishi, Okuu, Orin, Yuugi, Parsee, Yatagarasu, Sanae, Yamame, Kisume, Kanako, and Suwako (and Kanako and Suwako's "appearance" is debatable, as it's in a dream and they are represented by abstract stained glass constructs).
- Ocular Gushers: Many times from nearly all the characters.
- Original Character: The Yatagarasu.
- Orphaned Etymology: Despite living in a Fantastic Ghetto in a region that has itself been cut off from the rest of the world since 1885, French toast is still known to them.Okuu: What's "French"?
- Out-of-Clothes Experience
- Painting the Medium: Okuu "yelling" her thoughts is so loud the "speech" balloon stabs Satori in the head. Later, Orin's thoughts shoot through the sky and bounce off of Satori's head.
- Parental Substitute: Okuu and Orin very much treat the Komeiji's as their mothers.
- Poke in the Third Eye: Satori gets a nasty one of these when Koishi briefly closes her third eye.
- Puni Plush
- Reaction Shot: Koishi embracing a currently burning Okuu is enough to warrant one from three separate characters, with Orin adding a Double Take.
- Ridiculously Cute Critter: Okuu and Orin in animal form.
- Rump Roast: Orin is on the receiving end of this. Meanwhile, Koishi is on the verge of burning to death.
- Sand In My Eyes: In a variation, Orin and Satori blame the cicadas for Satori crying.
- Serial Escalation: The third chapter is longer than the first and second chapters combined.
- Shout-Out: The hot springs scene has one to Ranma ½ and to Lucky Star. Soon after Okuu and Orin chant "Pretty Cure!" when they transform. And at the end Koishi makes a Kiki's Delivery Service reference.
- Skewed PrioritiesOkuu: [Satori and Koishi] mean more than my life. They mean more to me than eggs.
Yatagarasu: That's really something. Wait... so is your ranking of eggs!
- Sleep-Mode Size: Okuu's initial child form, not having enough power for anything bigger. She gets her full adult form after absorbing the Yatagarasu.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: How Koishi's Perception Filter ability is represented.
- Suddenly SHOUTING!: After continually putting on a brave face, the doijin ends with Satori unleashing a maximum volume tirade of her true feelings.
- Tempting Fate: Orin wishes for something, anything, to stall Koishi. Cue gigantic explosion from one of the furnaces, with Okuu still inside.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Okuu and eggs.
- Tsundere: Parsee.
- Unsound Effect: SUDDENLY
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The nameless youkai who fear Koishi, starting the whole plot in motion.
- You Watch Too Much X: Satori's reaction when Yuugi speculates about zombies.