Onsen no Mori 温泉の森 is a popular onsen (Japanese hot spring) resort in Yamaguchi City, Yamaguchi Prefecture. In addition to its hot spring facilities, it has ping-pong tables and hammocks where you can rest after a dip in the soothing waters. It also boasts a library in its relaxation room which is stocked with over 5,000 books and manga, a fact which it proudly advertises in its promotional video:

The crime

However, a recent incident in the library has disturbed its relaxing mood. On September 25th, the Twitter account posted the following message, along with a photo of a bookshelf with a conspicuously empty space in it:

"Sad News: 20 volumes of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba were stolen from the relaxation room. We put quite an effort into collecting them...We hope the person who took them home by mistake returns them to where they found them.
'If someone goes down the wrong path we must stop them.'
Instead of telling the police, I'd like to use the power of social media to stop them."

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

It's obvious from this single tweet that the owner is not only a kind person, but also an avid Demon Slayer fan, as evidenced by the quote from the protagonist Tanjiro Kamado (which we won't explain further to avoid spoilers).

At first, the Tweet provoked reactions such as: "This is too awful," and "It's unforgivable." However, after the incident was picked up by several media sources, including television news variety shows, comments of another nature began flowing in.

A deluge of slanderous comments

While it's commendable that the owner should be such a trusting person, believing in the goodness of human nature and choosing a "soft" approach, appealing to the thief's conscience to "do the right thing," for whatever reason, this way of dealing with the theft was not met with unanimous approval. This prompted the account to post the following Tweet:


Currently, we haven't talked to the police and are going to see what happens. If the person who took the volumes is a Demon Slayer fan, then I want to believe in them even more. That is my way of thinking.
And yet, many insulting messages have been sent to us such as:
"Hand them over to the police!"
"Are you stupid?!"
We're grateful to receive replies and read your opinion on Twitter, but please stop sending us threats in direct messages. Please let us monitor the situation for a few days.
I want to believe them as a Demons Slayer fan and as a human being. I'm sorry if anyone was offended...

Onsen no Mori waited and waited, but alas, there was no response for the thief. However, after ten days had passed, something completely unexpected happened.

Demon Slayer fans come to the rescue

On October 2nd, the account owner came back to Onsen on Mori after returning from a break, but instead of more slanderous messages, he was surprised to find something else waiting for him.

He posted the following in a Tweet that day: "I hadn't come to work for a while but when I came in today, I found seven boxes..."

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

"...I've only opened one so far. They say "books" on them. I wonder... I'll report again soon."

Once he had opened all the boxes, there were 140 volumes of Demon Slayer!

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

As of October 10th, 190 volumes had arrived at Onsen no Mori, all of them from fans. Some of the letters they included are truly heartwarming:

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

Dear Onsen no Mori,
Pleased to make your acquaintance. I saw what happened on Twitter.
"In an incomplete world, we need love rather than anger."
This is one of my favorite sayings.
When the originals don't come back to you, I hope we can all come together and join forces.

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

To Onsen no Mori and all the staff,
Hello. I learned about the disappearance of the Demon Slayer volumes from net news. I wondered: "Is there anything I can do?" and then I realized: "Donating the 21 volumes I have at home" was the answer, so I called you and sent them along.
I hope that many visitors to Onsen no Mori will enjoy them, that this kind of thing will never happen again, and that those who stole them will return them to their original place and apologize to Onsen no Mori.
The tourism industry has been suffering since this spring due to the pandemic. If I have an opportunity, I'd like to visit Yamaguchi.
I hope you will continue to prosper.

Reproduced with permission from Onsen no Mori (@onsen_mori)

To Onsen no Mori,
I understand how you must feel!
Sorry for the bad artwork...

With this incredible outpouring of support and donations from fans, even if the stolen books never come back, the account owner's faith in the kindness of Demon Slayer fans has surely been bolstered.

And just today, Onsen no Mori dropped a hint that this story may have a sequel!

"Astonishment...Rapid new turn of events...I'm shaking...I'll report again soon."

Follow Onsen no Mori's account for the latest developments, and be sure to stop by the next time you visit Yamaguchi.

By - Ben K.