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"The Beginning" ( (ヤク) () , Yakushi?) is the first chapter of the Fukigen na Mononokean manga series, written and illustrated by Kiri Wazawa.

Overview

Hanae Ashiya has been suffering from an illness he thinks is caused by the strange creature riding on his shoulder. This hindrances Hanae to properly attend school. Out of desperation, Hanae seeks the help of an exorcist who calls himself Master of the Mononokean, Haruitsuki Abeno.

Plot

At the beginning, an exhausted-looking Hanae Ashiya, with a fuzzy creature riding on his left shoulder, muses about how yōkai and spirits don't actually exist and how he believed in that, until the week before he started in high school.

Hanae struggling with the yōkai

Hanae struggling with the yōkai

While on his way to school, Hanae struggles to keep walking as he suffers from headache, nausea, and fatigue. He guesses that the "fluffy thing" riding on his shoulder causes his illness - a creature only he is able to see. After thinking to himself that the creature is a yōkai, Hanae collapses to the ground.

Sometime later, Hanae wakes up in the school's nurse's office with an ice pack on his forehead. The nurse asks Hanae if he is all right and notes that he collapsed in fron of the gates again. Hanae realizes it's already his seventh trip to the nurse's office since school started. Hanae worries he won't be able to make friends anymore and blames it to his encounter with the fuzzy creature.

A flashback shows Hanae on his way back from an errand. He steps on something that is on the ground and gets shocked before he realizes that it's just a "stuffed animal". He wonders if some kid dropped it, also noting that it's dirty. Out of concern that someone might step on the "stuffed animal" again, Hanae decides to put it in a plastic bag and hangs the bag on a post in the sidewalk, thinking it will also make it easier for the owner to spot it. Thinking he has done a good deed, Hanae leaves. The "stuffed animal" looks up then suddenly jumps to him.

Back at the clinic at the present time, Hanae wishes he could go back to that time and tell himself that he'll only get cursed. He notes that he keeps feeling worse since the creature showed up and that it also keeps getting bigger. He hypothesizes that it's sucking something out of him and it's going to curse him to death. He spots an advertisement behind a poster in the bed wall. The ad is a recruitment poster for exorcists with contact details of a certain Abeno. Despite thinking the ad is shady and must have been posted as a joke, Hanae calls the number, desperate to rid himself of the fuzzy creature. Abeno answers, who asks Hanae to come for an interview immediately, bewildering Hanae. Abeno asks Hanae where he is, to which Hanae answers he is at the nurse's office. Abeno tells Hanae to open the door to the nurse's office. Hanae asks where shall he go from there. Abeno states he'll know after he opens the door, bewildering Hanae even further and thinks if Abeno is standing in the hallway outside the office.

Hanae opens the door and sees behind the door an old-style Japanese tea room and inside it is a man in a kimono who orders Hanae to take a seat. Hanae only slams the door close but the man opens it again informing him he is in the right place and orders him to come in. Once inside the tea room, the creature shrunk in size, shocking Hanae.

Hanae, Haruitsuki and the yōkai inside the tea room

Hanae, Haruitsuki and the yōkai inside the tea room

The man makes a tea and offers it to Hanae. Hanae asks the man if he is the Abeno in the poster. The man affirms and introduces himself as the master of the Mononokean, Haruitsuki Abeno. Haruitsuki proceeds to asking Hanae when can he start working, stating he'll do as Hanae can't be totally useless if he were able to see the recruitment notice despite looking weak. Annoyed by Haruitsuki's condescending tone but remembering he still needs his help to get rid of the creature, Hanae apologizes, saying he called not for the work but because he needs his help getting rid of the creature on his shoulder for him. Haruitsuki "agrees" to exorcise the creature, to which Hanae beamingly thanks him for. Haruitsuki revokes it, orders Hanae to get out and calls him weakling. Resisting retorting to Haruitsuki, Hanae pleads to him and asks if he can't do something. Irritated, Haruitsuki orders Hanae to let go and states he only invited him because he though he wanted to work. He states that if it's exorcism he wants, he has to wait for his turn. Hanae asks how long will he have to wait. Haruitsuki answers at least ten days. Hanae complains he doesn't have that long to which Haruitsuki retorts if he can't wait, he should do something about it on his own. Hanae yields and says he'll wait. Haruitsuki tells he'll then put him on the waiting list and asks for his name. Hanae introduces himself. Haruisuki reacts to Hanae's last name and clarifies. Hanae, bewildered, repeats it's Ashiya and asks what's the matter. Haruitsuki stares at him and ponders. Haruitsuki suddenly changes his mind and states he'll exorcise the creature already.

Haruitsuki orders Hanae to leave first, saying he'll follow after. On the way out, Hanae notes there's no door. Haruitsuki points out the door at Hanae's feet. Hanae complains that it's tiny.

Outside, Hanae is shocked to see not the nurse's office, where he came from. Haruitsuki reprimands him to not shout and tells him to shut up. Hanae asks where are they and Haruitsuki answers they are at the school roof. Hanae notes that the nurse's office is on the first floor but they reached the school roof after coming outside the tea room. Hanae notices that the creature on his shoulders is growing and comments it's heavy.

Scared of the sudden growth of the creature, Hanae tries to rid of himself from the creature by hitting on it. Haruitsuki angrily tells him to stop hitting it and be quiet. Hanae does as he was told. Haruitsuki brings out something out of his kimono sleeve and blows into it. Hanae thinks if it's some tool for exorcism. Hanae notes that Haruitsuki's expression turned grim and thinks if it could be a dangerous spell. Haruitsuki finished blowing what turns out to be a baseball and comments it's tough doing it. Hanae irritatedly realizes that Haruitsuki is just out of breath. Doubtful, Hanae asks if he can exorcise the creature with the beach ball. Haruitsuki answers that he is going to play with the ball. Irritated, Hanae asks if Haruitsuki is just buying time because he can't actually exorcise the creature. Hanae asks if Haruitsuki is having fun teasing him while he is desperately begging for help.

Haruitsuki states that just like he thought, Hanae is like the "others." He continues saying he doesn't care if Hanae suffers or dies, that he exorcises yōkai not for the people but for the sake of the yōkai. Haruitsuki tells the yōkai he can see him, too, and invites him to play with him. The yōkai stands and approaches Haruitsuki. Hanae notes he doesn't have a headache anymore. He states the yōkai wouldn't let go despite his punching and kicking. Haruitsuki asks him what he thinks is the reason why the yōkai possessed him, that despite his punches and kicks, the yōkai clung to him. Hanae answers that it was because he stepped on the yōkai's tail and it resented him and wanted to kill him. Haruitsuki replies that if the yōkai actually wanted to kill him, he'd already be dead. Hanae then asks what is the reason. Haruitsuki recounts his encounter with yōkai like the one with them.
Haruitsuki playing with the yōkai

Haruitsuki playing with they yōkai

They are pets who were once kept by people and became yōkai after dying but still wag their tails and do tricks for their owners until they realize no one's looking at them. Haruitsuki states that most people are not able to see yōkai, that's why as long as they're in the human world, they're alone. Haruitsuki tells Hanae that when the yōkai met someone who didn't ignore him, the yōkai was happy that's why the yōkai clung to him. A flashback of scenes shows Hanae's futile efforts of getting rid of the yōkai.

Hanae thinks to himself that he couldn't have possibly known the yōkai's reason for possessing him. Hanae was just afraid because he started getting sick. Hanae suddenly asks if there's anything he can do for the yōkai, shocking Haruitsuki. Haruitsuki smiles and invites Hanae to play. Haruitsuki says that he'll return the yōkai to the Underworld, where the yōkai belongs but the yōkai is too big to be exorcised. To get the yōkai to shrink, Haruitsuki tells that they have to give the yōkai what he wants, to play. The yōkai approaches Hanae and touches the ball he was holding. Haruitsuki interprets that the yōkai says he wants to play. Hanae plays with the yōkai.

Hanae done playing with the yōkai

Hanae done playing with the yōkai

Five hours later, Hanae is tired and the yōkai has shrunk to a size just a little bigger than the beach ball. Haruitsuki states its size is small enough for exorcism. Haruitsuki summons a portal to the Underworld. Hanae asks if it's safe for the yōkai to go to the Underworld, noting the foreboding aura beyond the door. Haruitsuki replies that it's more habitable for yōkai, adding the yōkai will have friends. Hanae muses how he wanted the yōkai to go away but is now reluctant to let him go. Hanae apologizes to the yōkai for mistaking him and hitting him. The yōkai wags his tails and smiles back at Hanae. Hanae pulls the yōkai for an embrace and asks it not to go. Haruitsuki orders Hanae to get away from the yōkai and that he is closing the door to the Underworld. Hanae tells "see you" to the yōkai. The yōkai says "thank you" to Hanae telepathically. Hanae mistakes it for Haruitsuki thanking him but realizes that it might have been the yōkai. The yōkai jumps and approaches Haruitsuki, who tells him he doesn't need to thank him. The yōkai enters the door. Hanae and Haruitsuki waves the yōkai good bye and the yōkai smiles at the. Haruitsuki closes the door and it vanishes.

Haruitsuki asking Hanae for his fee

Haruitsuki asking Hanae for his fee

Hanae drops to his knees and bows before Haruitsuki as an apology for his rudeness earlier. Haruitsuki says that it's fine as he's used to it. Hanae comments that he thinks Haruitsuki is actually a good person, irking Haruitsuki. Hanae notes how he played with the fuzz ball yōkai and thanks him for his help. Haruitsuki lays out his hand to Haruitsuki, confusing Hanae. Haruitsuki says not to thank him but pay him up a million fo the exorcism. Hanae complains that he's just a high school student and does not have money of that amount. Haruitsuki then tells Haruitsuki to help him work to pay off his debt. Hanae protests he can't just decide that. Hanae says he'll work a normal job as he can't exorcise demons but Haruitsuki replies it won't work since the fee is 1 million En, the Underworld Currency.

Characters in Order of Appearance 

Characters in bold denote the characters' first proper appearance.

Chapter Highlights

  • Hanae Ashiya, Haruitsuki Abeno and Fuzzy are introduced.
  • Hanae Ashiya discovers and gets involved with the yōkai world.

Trivia

  • The kanji "厄" is the character for "unlucky, misfortune, disaster" while the kanji "始" is the character for "begin, commence."

Navigation

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