You're (eye color) eyes stare up at the dark, night sky in shock as you witness something you thought you would never see in your lifetime. The sparks of energy that light up the sky was creating large gusts of wind that threatened to topple over anything in the vicinity that wasn't hammered down. You pressed yourself against the wall of your shrine, praying you wouldn't be swept away in the storm. There were others that took what little refuge by the shrine as you had. A young man with long red hair had a hold of your wrist, making sure you did not fly away in the violent gusts. You were unaware of who these men were but you assumed they had brought this creature to you.
There were beings up above the shrine, moving faster than your humans eyes could conceive but you knew they were there, fighting to the death.
“H-how...” You whispered to yourself, not daring to look away. “How could this have happened...”
“I'm off!” Your little brother called to you, rushing down the stone stairs of the shrine. It was a clear morning and you were sweeping the pavement in front of the shrine's offering box. You turned around, your traditional Japanese shrine hakama swaying in the wind.
“Careful down the steps!” You warned him as he disappeared down the stairs. “And watch out for cars!” You added, jogging to the top of the stairs to watch him off. He waves back to you as he hopped the last two stairs and skipped away down the side of the street. You huff a little but return to your duties, cleaning the shrine before visitors came to pray. Your shrine was known for answering prayers for safety and protection. You prayed for your brother's safety quietly as you swept. Though you two were not siblings by blood, the young boy was as close to a brother as one could be.
“The shrine isn't dirty, why must you always clean?” A lazy and husky voice asked you from above. You look up to a creature in a musky old fox max and a hakama similar to a priest of the shrine but there were many warding talisman slapped onto it. The creature was sitting atop the red roof of the shrine, his feet hanging off of the side as he peered down at you through his mask. Many would be alarmed by this creature, his body structure obviously not human, as its torso was elongated and its neck craned over like a swan.
“I should always clean each day for the spirits.” You replied, smiling up at the being. He had been overlooking your shrine since you could remember and you saw him as a sort of guardian, though his appearance was more similar to a demon than a holy guardian. But he kept your shrine safe from the evil spirits that lurked outside these sacred grounds.
You have always had the ability to see a world that no one else could but this came at a price. Many of these evil spirits would search for you, wishing to bring harm to you. You were lucky that your parents had noticed something was wrong so early on when they would hear eerie noises at night and it looked as though something came to your room each night in a hysterical frenzy. A family friend own this shrine that you are now standing in and your parents asked if the head priest would take you in. The head priest, no stranger to the supernatural spirits that lurked in the human realm, agreed to take you in and raised you as a shrine maiden and though you were safe inside the grounds, you were hunted for if you took one step outside the spiritual shield. Your parents soon had an unfortunate accident some months later and did not survive the night in the hospital.
“We have a visitor.” The guardian said, snapping you out of your mindless, rythmic sweeping.
You look up, smiling at the first visitor of the day. “Good morning!” You said sweetly, bowing respectively to the visitor.
“Mornin'!” He cheerfully replied, giving you a wave. You didn't recognize his green uniform as any of the nearby high schools' and his black hair was slicked back like a delinquent you would see from the city but he had a friendly enough smile. He skips over to the offering box, flipping in a few coins before taking the thick twisted rope and giving it a good swing, the chimes of the large bells echoing out through the grounds. He clapped his hands twice before closing his eyes and praying.
You hear a shuffle and look up to the guardian, taking notice at his body posture. He was crouched down now, his head lowered towards the visitor, obviously anxious at the presence of the high schooler.
You furrowed your brows at the creature but quickly smile as the visitor turned around, finished with his prayer. He grins to you and approaches you, his hands stuck into his pocket. “So, I heard shrines like this have a lot of spirits, that true?” He asked.
“O-oh.” You give a nervous chuckle as you answered his question. “I wouldn't know if it was true, but I would like to believe a spirit guarded these shrines from demons.” As you spoke, you started noticing a strong sense of energy slowly seeping from the boy. You held your smile but you were shocked you hadn't noticed his energy before. From the amount that was leaking through, you could tell that his energy was much higher than you would expect.
'This is why the guardian is so anxious...' you thought as the boy walks over to the small stall where you sold small charms.
You quickly follow after him, smiling as you asked him, “Would you like to buy one?”
The young man shrugs, “Sure, why not. What are they for?”
“Protection.” The high schooler lets out a small laugh, confusing you. “I-is something the matter?” You asked, wondering if you said anything funny.
“No, don't worry about it.” He chuckled, taking out some money and handing it to you. “I'll taaaake....” He glances over his choices before picking one out. “This one. Keep the change.” He said as he pockets it and heads towards the stairs. “Thanks!”
“Um, thank you! Please come visit us again!” You call after him.
“I will!” He replied, soon disappearing down the stairs.
“How curious...” The guardian finally spoke as its neck twisted and turned in thought. “He appeared human but that energy... And that SMELL....” The guardian stretched his body as he stood, looming over the shrine like a scarecrow.
“Is something the matter?” You asked him, putting the money away in a small, locked drawer.
“...” He remained silent for a moment, his eyes peering out into the distance before replying, “Nothing...”