Scarlet Devil Mansion... This place houses not only the Scarlet sisters, but also to some others, like the Maid-in-Chief Sakuya, the lazy gate guard Meiling, the librarian assistant little devil Koakuma and Patchouli, the librarian in question. Also, many fairies are often sighted, doing the cleanning, but failing horribly and leaving the tasks harder for Sakuya.
Another usual day at the SDM, the fairies this time resting as Sakuya finished the cleanning... Or so she had thought. Walking by Patchouli's favorite tea table in the library, she noticed something very thin. Her feet led her to the table, as she felt curious of what this was. bringing it between her middle finger and thumb, she took it closer to her face, inspecting. "A hair... Nothing out of ordinary..." she thought at first, but then, she realized...
"A cat hair?" Sakuya had wasted no second in telling to her mistress about her findings.
"Yes, mistress... A cat's hair. On Patchouli's favorite table. I'm suspicious that Koakuma once again brought a pet, and knowing how a disaster of a pet owner she is..." Sakuya said.
Remilia sighed and held her forehead before saying "It might be a lion, a panther or even worse... A nekomata!". This didn't shake Sakuya, whom simply asked "What should I do, mistress?"
"S-I-M-P-L-E!" Remilia spelled "What did I say, should you find unwanted guests?"
"... Kill... Them?" Sakuya reflected, looking up.
"Exactly! But save the blood for me, of course. Should I want a special snack. Also, save me the tail and ears, I have another plans for them.". As Remilia said that, Sakuya was wearing cat ears and tail and a swimsuit in Remilia's imagination.
"Mistress, what's with the blushing and grinning?" Sakuya had now a sweat drop running down her face.
"Ah, thought of something funny to do with Flandre." Remilia lied.
"R-Right... Mistress..." her sweat drop finally fell.
Sakuya spend day and night looking for the cat... Or lion... Or panther.. Or nekomata. But not even a trace was found. While searching in the library, she noticed again the same cat hair, this time on Patchouli's chair. "The cat was here! I know it!" Sakuya frowned. Not long after, Patchouli walked closer and said "Why is that you are here looking at my chair? Is it wet, dirty or something?". Sakuya showed her the hair and Patchouli panicked "Keep that thing away from me! It'll attack my asthma!". Sakuya had to find this cat... For the sake of the librarian.
No one saw a cat or anything that looked like one. Even Meiling, that did a miracle and slept nothing during an entire day, could find no trace. Sakuya spoke even with Flandre, but not even the childish vampire saw it ("Cat? I'd love playing with it! Shame they break too easily"). Nothing... Sakuya was about to give up, but then occurred that she had yet to hear of Koakuma.
Tracing her path to Koakuma's room, she knocked the door and said "Koakuma, open now! I know you have an animal with you.". The door creaked open and Koakuma pulled Sakuya in. Koakuma was nervous and unusually pale, but that didn't shake Sakuya, that simply said "Answers, now! And give me your 'pet'!". Koakuma didn't say a thing. Instead, she motioned for her to sit by her side on the bed. Sakuya sat and, as soon as he did, Koakuma began talking.
"S-Sakuya, first promise... Don't tell a thing to P-Patchouli, Remilia or anyone else."
"Why is it? Are you thinking I'll kill your 'pet'? Because that is what I was told to."
"No, it is not that!" Koakuma was unusually nervous "I brought no animal! You know I didn't!"
"Suuuuuuuuuure... What about that day..." Sakuya started ranting about the many animals she brought in during only one week.
"I know, okay?! But I'm serious this time: I have NO animal here!"
"... Right... Then I promise... But if they cause trouble, I will have our mistress deal with you."
"O-Okay... The truth is... This..." Koakuma showed Pathouli's hat to Sakuya. It was full of cat's hair.
"Your cat slept in her hat?" Sakuya didn't seem moved.
"Look again!" Koakuma pretty much squeezed the hat against Sakuya's face.
"Quit it or else-" Sakuya widened her eyes "T-This smell... Cannot be! Can it?!"
Koakuma gave only a nod as a response. Sakuya took the hat, claiming she needed that proof. The little devil's hesitation had a reason: She didn't want Patchouli to suffer or be punished, she knew the librarian could not endure it. Sakuya ensured Patchouli's safety and explained she'd rather talk with Patchouli about this.
The library was unusually silent. Why unusually? It was impossible to hear Patchouli's flipping pages. Actually, Patchouli's books were untouched on the arm of her chair. Sakuya took the book in hands, analyzing it... And once again, that short cat hair was found. She sat there, awaiting for Patchouli.
Patchouli walked in the library not long after, going straight to her chair, but stopped upon sighting the maid's silhouette. Their eyes meet, no expressions being shared... And then, Patchouli says "I lost my hat... The cat-". At this point, Sakuya showed the hat and replied.
"The cat must have taken it to play? That excuse doesn't work... For you never EVER removes your hat!"
"Sakuya, I don't like your tone... Give it to me now." for a moment, a low growl escaped her throat.
"Right..." Sakuya said, disappearing. She appeared right next to Patchouli "Now!"
The maid pushed the hat against the asthmatic librarian's face. Patchouli widened her eyes in shock and, seconds after, Sakuya took the hat away from Patchouli's face, a smirk slowly spreading. Patchouli coughed a bit, hitting her chest hard before pretty much clawing her hat from Sakuya's hand.
"What was that for?! (pff! I got hair on my tongue!)" Patchouli still tried to spit some cat hair that stuck to her tongue.
"Your asthma didn't act up! And look at what kind of hair is in your hat." Sakuya said.
"Mine of cour-" Patchouli said, before noticing it "C-Cat hair?!"
"Now, where is your cat?!" Sakuya said, but got no response. With a low sigh, she changed her expression, to a calm one. "Patchouli... Stop hiding it from us... I assure you that nothing bad will happen to your cat..."
"My cat?! I have no cat!" Patchouli frowned and spat some hair.
"Then why did you get hair in your hat?" Sakuya was totally lost there.
"Sakuya... I didn't want you to know... Not even to Remilia to know... But this whole lie should come to an end..."
Sakuya remained puzzled, until two ears perked up from Patchouli's hair, and she pulled her dress up a bit to allow her tail to appear. Sakuya blinked her eyes thrice, before...
"So... You are an Otaku?"
"No!" Patchouli frowned
"Hell no!" Patchouli had an sweat drop on her face.
"So you are..."
"A Nekojin! A Catgirl! What took you so long to figure?!"
"Ah... You are a- Whatthehelldidyoujustsay?!" Sakuya was shocked.
"H-How much blood has Remilia taken from her?!" Patchouli just thought, for it was a very awkward moment.
A long explanation, some tea and book reading followed. This all for Patchouli to tell the whole story and situation. For that, Sakuya learned Patchouli lied all the time: She had an overall perfect health. However, pretended to have asthma, get sick often and even the times she had a fever were nothing but her pretending. Until it was dawn, they kept talking. By then, Patchouli had to sleep... Sakuya took Patchouli in arms and walked to her own room. There, she let Patchouli rest, leaving a note within her hat:
"Don't worry, no one other than the mistress and I will know of this. I promise nothing will happen to you."
Later in the noon, Remilia was having her usual tea, while awaiting for the sun to set. Sakuya stood by her side most of the time, until she has finally decided to tell it to her mistress. Taking seat before her, she apologized herself, which brought Remilia to think aloud.
"Apologize? Why? You did nothing wrong! Or did you?"
"Mistress... I... I couldn't rid of the unwanted guest."
"Mistress... The unwanted guest is also an important resident of the-" Sakuya was then interrupted by Remilia
"Patchouli? I knew it was her."
"But then why did you ask me to..."
"Okay, I lied, I didn't know... Anyways... Please, tell me more."
Sakuya sighed, disappointed by the fact that her mistress lied about such serious matter. But, still, explained everything that happened prior to her learning of patchouli and of when she did. Remilia didn't seemed moved in any way. After it all have been explained, Remilia took a sip from her tea, in complete silence.
"So... Patchouli was a cat... This means that the cat that kept intruding in my library when I first brought the mansion here..."
"Yes, mistress..." confirmed Sakuya "That cat was Patchouli."
"And I had named her Bookworm back then." Remilia laughed.
"Bookworm?! So she-" once again, Remilia interrupted.
"The cat was always in the library. And, no matter how many times we threatened or scared her, she came back. It was amazing on how a cat could make no noise other than the moment she flipped the pages."
Sakuya couldn't believe on the secrets concealed within the mansion: Cats that learned high level magics, a dragon yokai disguised as a "human" gateguard... What next? Koakuma being Remilia's daughter? A shiver took Sakuya as she thought that... And then went back to do her usual duties as a maid.
On her way to the kitchen, she dared a peek in Patchouli's room. Patchouli was sleeping... That single sight made Sakuya think "What made her go so far to try and look human? I guess... That it must be the same reason that made me stay to serve my mistress..."
And so, Sakuya left in silence... Patchouli still sat there... Asleep... And then openned one eye, sticking out a tongue in a smile and thinking "Heheh, seems I'm the only cat that catches the mice here!"