Archive for the ‘ Text Passages ’ Category

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (Part 5/7)

Only two parts left! (I say this when the next part is by far the longest).

「茨姫」”Episode 04: La Belle au bois dormant” from Volume 2 of ダンタリアンの書架/Dantalian no Shoka/Bibliotheca Mystica de Dantalian/The Mystical Archives of Dantalian.

Parts: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

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Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (4)

Just as Talia and the workman had said, the shape of the land around the mansion was terribly confusing. The road was often cut off by landslides, and would either end at a sudden drop, or run into the bottom of a steep cliff. After taking several hours longer than they had expected, Huey and Dalian finally made it to the entrance to the mansion. Then, standing in front of they gate, they frowned.

The iron gate was hedged by a high wall, and countless thorned vines had wrapped themselves around it barring anyone from entering. Furthermore, caught in the thick vines was something, greyly glimmering.

It was a dead body.

Real human bones raised up, with faded clothing still about them, a dried corpse was left to bleach in the sun, still wrapped in the vines of the gate – and there was more than one.

“If these are meant to be a decoration, the owner really has some incredible tastes,” Dalian said coldly.

“These corpses are fairly new… All the flesh has fallen from the bones, but the clothing is still fairly intact… It can only be a year at most since they died… From their clothing, they were probably servants of this mansion…” Huey calmly analyzed the scene.

From what they had in front of them, it was impossible to tell whether the growth of the vines had lifted the bodies up, or someone had tied them up in the vines while they were still alive. If one thing was clear, it was that anyone who abandoned corpses at the gate where they lived couldn’t be in a right state of mind.

“So what do we do Dalian? If we don’t do something about these vines we’ll never make it into the mansion.”

“Isn’t it obvious? We’ll just break through them. There just so happens to be a useful tool lying around.”

Without changing her expression, Dalian pointed to the ground under one of the corpses where there was an axe. It probably belonged to someone who was trying to save their friends caught in the vines. The fact that the axe was left here probably meant that its original owner met the same fate of the one he was trying to save. It didn’t seem like it carried a very good omen.

“We’ll break through…? Don’t you mean me?” Huey muttered as he reluctantly picked up the axe.

So, with a surprisingly skilled hand, Huey began to hack away the vines locked around the gate. There was rust on the blade of the axe, but it hadn’t dulled very much. The vines fell away and the way in front of them opened up.

Just like the workman had said, there weren’t any lights on in the mansion. Huey and Dalian made their way past the skeletons at the gate and headed toward the entrance. The door wasn’t locked. Huey pulled on it and it easily creaked open.

The inside of the mansion was dark. Huey took his military oil lighter out of his pocket and used it in place of a torch.

“No sign of anyone huh… Still, it’s cleaner than you would expect,” Huey said, looking around the hall.

There was a thin layer of dust on the carpet, but there were no signs of a struggle of any sort. All of the furniture was neatly in its place. If someone had told him that the owner had only been absent a few months, he would have easily belived him. Well, if it weren’t for all the vines and corpses at the front gate.

Dragging the axe along in one hand and carrying his lighter in the other, Huey climbed the stairs to the clock tower. In the observation room above the clock tower the master of this mansion, the princess of this castle of thorns, Florence Carabosse should be there. Huey had seen her with his own eyes just hours before.

However, when Huey reached the observation room, he froze in his tracks.

Certainly, there was a woman there. It was a long haired woman wearing an expensive looking dress. She was standing at the window, which was covered in vines, as if she were looking down at the village. She was probably the same age as Talia. Surely she would have been a beautiful woman – had she been alive.

“This is…” Huey looked around the room and groaned.

You could say the woman was “standing” at the window, but nothing below her torso was there. The lower half of her body had been hewn off by someone, and was lying on the sofa. Her head and arms had been ripped from her body as well, probably while she was still wearing that dress. Vines draping from the ceiling had wrapped around those severed parts and held them aloft. The reason it looked like she was alive was because of those vines. Her torso, head, and arms had been hung from the ceiling, as if she were a marionette.

“I guess this is… Ms. Florence?” Huey walked over to the corpse at the window and sighed.

There was no need to confirm she was dead for some time. Her body had dried out, but her clothes weren’t very faded, so the corpse wasn’t very old. She had probably been dead maybe a few months to half a year at most, about the same time as the corpses at the front gate.

“Well it doesn’t look like a suicide.” Huey looked at the splattered blood stains on the carpet.

Dalian placidly agreed. “Yes. If her legs didn’t walk themselves over there, then she was killed by someone.”

“I wonder if it was the same person who set fire to Carabosse’s main mansion…? Wait.”

As Huey questioned himself, he noticed a fundamental contradiction.

“Then who was the person our witness saw at the foot of the mountain if it wasn’t Ms. Florence?”

From examining at Florence Carabosse’s corpse, it must have been almost half a year since she died, but Florence had been sighted at the foot of the mountain not more than a month ago. The witness was a merchant that had a long relationship with the Carabosse family, so the credibility of his information was high. It was hard to think that he simply mistook her for someone else.

“Does that mean that someone that should have died is out living and walking around? Don’t tell me that that’s the power of “The Book of Deep Green”… Dalian?”

“No.” The black clothed girl determinedly shook her head.

“The dead don’t read books. If “The Book of Deep Green” really does exist, its owner is not her but someone else.”

“…Does that mean someone killed her and stole the phantom book?” Huey asked with a severe expression on his face.

Dalian quietly continued. “Either that or the phantom book’s owner wasn’t her to begin with.”

“Then it wasn’t Ms. Florence? Then who…?” Huey asked, perplexed.

“There is only one other possibility. You haven’t even figured that out yet? Idiot.”

“Huh?” Huey was dumbfounded.

Dalian looked back at Huey with a mix of disdain. “It’s just as that peasant said. Other than the people at the mansion, there’s only one other person who can read books.”

“Talia… but… why would she…?”

“I don’t know either, but I think it’s safe to say that there’s a phantom book in this village,” Dalian muttered as she looked to the window. Her cheeks on her emotionless face were white, as if the blood had drained from her face. Before the small patch of night sky cut out by the window, something was rustling, undulating.

It was the rose vines. Under the reddish moonlight, thick green vines were squirming, very much alive, and trying to surround the mansion Huey and Dalian were in.

=====

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Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (Part 4/7)

^(I’m already starting to run out of appropriately themed images)

「茨姫」”Episode 04: La Belle au bois dormant” from Volume 2 of ダンタリアンの書架/Dantalian no Shoka/Bibliotheca Mystica de Dantalian/The Mystical Archives of Dantalian.

Parts: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

=====

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (3)

After leaving their luggage with Talia, Dalian and Huey took a walk around the village.

The evening sun had already sunk along the western ridgelines and filled the sky with a reddish glow. A peasant who had finished his work in the fields was walking along one of the paths in semidarkness. He was very tan, and had a fearless look about him.

“Good evening,” Huey said to the young workman carrying a hoe on his shoulders.

Even though Huey and Dalian must have been a strange sight, the man didn’t show any sign of suspicion and laughed in reply.

“Hey. Haven’t seen you folks around here before. Must be the scholars Talia brought in to town eh?”

“Scholars?” Huey replied, caught off guard.

On the way to Talia’s house, Huey had seen Talia talking with some of the villagers, but he had no idea that this sort of rumor had spread already.

“No? Aren’t you two looking for a book?” said the man, a little surprised.

“Ah, yes we are… Do you know anything about it?”

“Nope. The only ones around here that can read books are the people in the master’s mansion, and then Talia. I’ve got the feeling I learned a bit when I was a kid, but I’ve forgotten my letters long ago. After all, no one comes this far to sell the newspapers eh?”

Then the man laughed, “But you two really do have too much time on your hands. It’s not like a book’ll fill your stomach, no matter how rare it is!”

“Well, that’s true… They don’t taste very good do they, at least if you’re not a goat.”

The man burst out laughing at Huey’s less than clever joke before continuing.

“Haha, you really are something, you two. I like ya – Oh, by the way, where are you going this late in the day?”

“Well we were thinking of going to the northern forest…”

Huey didn’t have any reason to lie, so he told the truth. After all, in such a small village, outsiders stick out like a sore thumb. He didn’t think he could hide where he was going even if he wanted to.

“The master’s mansion huh… Well that makes sense. You’re looking for a book after all.”

The man nodded, and it didn’t seem like he had a problem with them going, but he continued.

“Still, if I were you I’d wait until tomorrow.”

“Why?”

“There are rarely any lights on in the mansion, and well, night out here in the country is dark. I hear the young lady sleeps early as well. They say the reason she’s way out here is for her health after all.”

“I see…”

“Another thing. If you’re not careful on the way over there, don’t blame me if you never make it back. That place’s a castle of thorns.”

“Talia said the same thing.” Huey smiled a faintly bitter smile.

The man looked like he understood how Huey felt.

“Probably so. Are you spending the night at Talia’s? If not, would you like to stay with me? I don’t have any books, but I do have spirits!”

“Spirits? Do you make it yourself?” asked Huey, a little surprised. There wasn’t any store in the village that looked like it would sell liquor.

The man folded his arms as if he were tracing back through his memories.

“No, someone gave it to me… Hmm… who was it again? Well I guess it doesn’t matter. My house is on the top of that hill over there. If you feel like it, come over whenever you’d like.”

“Thank you.”

Huey gave his thanks to the workman and they parted ways, Dalian and Huey continuing just as they were along the darkening path by the fields.

“But… this really is a strange village.” Huey muttered after making sure the workman was gone.

“There’s hardly enough of a population here to support itself, and yet I don’t see any signs of interation with the outside. It doesn’t even look like they’ve noticed that that village at the foot of the mountain is empty… But it doesn’t feel like this place is desolate or anything… I wouldn’t go as far to call it ‘abnormal’, but… I’m not really sure.”

“That’s not the only thing,” said Dalian in a harsh tone.

“Haven’t you noticed? In this village there isn’t a single child, or anyone you could call old.”

Startled, Huey turned around in the direction the workman had left. As far as he could tell from the state of the buildings this village wasn’t a new settlement. It was an old village, with a history. If that were the case, then it was strange that there were no elderly. All of the peasants, Talia included were young and in their prime.

“So that was what felt so out of place in this village…”

“According to the policeman we met in the first town, the village at the foot of the mountain was full of old people with weak bodies, so then why is it that only the people of this village, further up in the mountains, are all so young?” Dalian asked, as if talking to herself.

“However, it didn’t seem like any of the villagers were hiding anything… though I suppose that outsiders are rare here,” said Huey, unable to come up with an answer.

Dalian looked emotionlessly at the top of the hill. “They probably don’t know anything. If anyone knows anything…”

“I’m guessing it would be the princess of that castle of thorns.” said Huey quietly, looking up at the clock tower raised against the dusk sky.

The mansion covered in rosevines seemed to be part of the forest behind it, and in the silence it felt even more unsettling.

=====

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (Part 3/7)

I will be continuing these installments, but not on a daily basis like I originally planned ^^;

「茨姫」”Episode 04: La Belle au bois dormant” from Volume 2 of ダンタリアンの書架/Dantalian no Shoka/Bibliotheca Mystica de Dantalian/The Mystical Archives of Dantalian.

Parts: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

=====

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (2)

Walking further up the mountain path, without warning, the forest opened into a much broader landscape. There was nothing separating the village from the rest of the mountain, so immediately after leaving the forest you could see rows of houses. It was a small village, and it merged easily into its surroundings. The land itself was more than what normally would be expected, but there were only fifteen houses at most in the entire village.

Houses were here and there surrounded by crop fields, and there were grazing fields on the slope of the mountain dotted with livestock. There was very little level land within the village, with most of the land at a gentle slope, with a few sharp drop offs here and there. It might not have been the easiest place to live in, but it was beautiful. The evening sun was shining brilliantly on the thick green slopes, and countless wildflowers were blossoming from either side of the road.

“What a beautiful village,” said Huey, honestly reflecting.

“Still, there really isn’t anything here…” said the young woman in the cape, smiling shyly.

Seeing how tired Dalian was unused to walking on mountain roads, the woman had invited Huey and Dalian to rest at her house. She said her name was “Talia” and that she lived by herself in the village.

Talia led Huey and Dalian to a stone-built house in the village center which was where she lived. It wasn’t a very large building but it was clearly older than any of the other houses in the village, and there were strange symbols on the gate and its pillars – the same symbols on her her cape.

“Talia, you aren’t by chance the leader of the village are you?” Huey asked with a slightly suspicious expression.

Talia smiled and shook her head.

“No, I’m just a shaman.”

“Shaman?”

“Yes – Well, I also have priest-like duties… After all in a village like this, there are few that can read the holy scriptures.”

“Ah, I see.” Huey nodded.

A shaman was someone that gathered the roots, leaves, and bark of various plants to make medicines that they would then sell or prescribe to sick people. In a small mountain village such as this, the shamans, who have passed their medicinal knowledge and healing methods down from generation to generation, still serve a valuable role to the people in place of doctors. Along with their medicinal knowledge, it was common for shamans to pass down the people’s faith and folklore as well. The stange symbols on Talia’s clothing were probably remnants of ancient spells and charms.

In fact, the inside of Talia’s home looked just as one would expect from a shaman. Countless jars of medicines lined the shelves, dried herbs and tree roots were hanging from the walls, and several books of medicine were scattered here and there, covered in dust.

Dalian looked around the room, filled with curiosity, and was just about to reach for one of the books when she suddenly stopped. She had fixated on the contents of a clay bowl – Talia’s leftovers, in other words, fried bread sprinkled with sugar.

Dalian froze, glaring at the bread. Her mouth opened halfway, her shameless expression like a dog told that it “couldn’t have any”.

“Um… if you’d like… you can have some…” said Talia, noticing Dalian’s expression.

Dalian’s eyes suddenly lit up, but then she acted as if it didn’t mean much to her, correcting herself with a small cough, before slowly reaching out to the bread. She nodded a short bow to Talia and then ferociously bit into it.

Talia smiled as she looked on from behind at Dalian who was clearly overjoyed.

Huey, meanwhile, looked out the window, pretending not to notice anything.

“Are you looking for the village leader’s house?” asked Talia anxiously, mistaking Huey’s actions.

“No, it’s nothing like that.” Huey shook his head, a little flustered.

“It’s just… I’d like to make sure. The one who rules over this village is Mister John Carabosse, right? I heard that he owns the entire mountain.”

Talia nodded in response to Huey’s question. “Yes, that is certain. Even in this village the master has a summer house.”

“Then, this village must know about the incident that happened at the Carabosse mansion, right?”

“Something happened at the master’s mansion…?”

“Mister Carabosse died about half a year ago, in a fire at his mansion.”

“The master died…!? My god…”

Talia, who had started to boil water for tea for Dalian almost dropped the kettle.

“It was a large fire, the entire mansion went up in flames. His family and servants included, close to twenty lost their lives. The cause of the fire is not known, but some think it may have been arson.”

“Arson?” Talia gasped.

Huey raised his eyebrows. “You really didn’t know? No one sent any word?”

“I haven’t heard anything… I was beginning to think that I hadn’t seen the master in some time, but our young lady hasn’t said anything either…”

“Young lady?” Huey replied in suspicion, caught on Talia’s words.

“Miss Florence is the master’s daughter. She has always stayed in the summer house here.”

“Mister Carabosse’s daughter? Is she in the village now?”

“Yes. We don’t often have the chance to talk to her, but we sometimes see her from the windows. She is very beautiful.”

“…”

Huey paused for a moment and thought, then he let out a long sigh.

“So the rumors are true….”

“Rumors?”

“An acquaintence of an acquaintance of mine is a merchant that often traveled to the Carabosse mansion. He says that he saw Mister Carabosse’s daughter at the foot of this mountain. That was a month ago however…”

“…Huh…”

Talia’s expression was blank in response to Huey’s explanation.

From this village to the one at the foot of the mountain, the road is fairly harsh, but it’s a distance to where on horseback one could come and go in a matter of hours. It wouldn’t be unusual for Carabosse’s daughter to go that far just to stave off boredom. That must have been what Talia was thinking.

Huey lowered his voice, serious. “Some people suspect that she may have been the one to set fire to the mansion and kill Mister Carabosse.”

“Our lady…?” Talia looked shocked, but after a moment laughed and shook her head.

“That’s impossible. After all our lady hasn’t left this village for many years. Her body is weak and she has never been in much health, that’s why she is here, to recuperate.”

“But it’s not like she couldn’t have gone back to her family mansion, right?” Huey replied with little tone to his voice.

Talia glared back at Huey suspiciously. “Are you with the police? Have you come to take her away?”

“No, it’s nothing like that.”

Huey smiled bitterly and shrugged his shoulders.

“I said so in the beginning, we’re looking for a book.”

“A book?” Talia replied, looking as if she thought Huey was dodging the question.

Huey slowly nodded. “Its common name is “The Book of Deep Green”. It is a precious book Mister Carabosse is said to have brought back from the East. It is thought that it burned in the fire of his mansion, but the merchent I mentioned before claimed he saw it. He said that when he saw Mister Carabosse’s daughter, she was carrying a book that fit its description.”

“And to investigate that book, you came this far into the mountains?” Talia looked even more suspicious.

“Well, there were various circumstances…” Huey said, with a little self spite.

“…So where is this summer house you were talking about?” Dalian, who had been silently eating up until now, suddenly spoke.

“That’s… in the northern forest…” replied Talia, caught off guard.

The young shaman glanced toward a window that faced the slope leading up to the north. Just as she said, a single building stood on a hill before an expanse of dense forest. It was a tall mansion, complete with a clock tower.

The reason Huey and Dalian hadn’t noticed it before was because the mansion was covered in the same green as the forest around it. The brick walls of the building itself, and even the tall fence that surrounded it were thick with vines. Everything blended in so much that it was hard to make out where the forest ended and the mansion began.

It seemed that the vines were thorned rose vines. It wasn’t uncommon for nobles to plant roses in their summer houses, but the amount in this case was abnormal.

“That is the summer house?” Huey asked as he stared at the strange mansion in the distance.

“Yes… but it would be better if you didn’t go that way.” Talia warned, looking troubled.

“Why? Is the lady difficult to deal with?”

“No, that’s not why, it’s just that the terrain is very difficult to deal with and easy to get lost in, even for us that live here. There are very many people who have gone that way and never come back.”

Huey was shocked, and shook his head. “Why would Mister Carabosse put his summer house in such a place…?”

“I don’t know… It’s not like it’s impossible to come and go, but our lady rarely leaves… Perhaps it was set there to keep out intruders?

As he listened to Talia’s explanation, Huey approached the window and looked at the mansion. The grey bricks had caught the light of the setting sun and glowed a brilliant red. The rose vines had wrapped even around the top of the clocktower and it was certainly altogether beautiful.

A window in the clocktower was open. It was dark within the clocktower and hard to see, but in the reflecting sunlight he could see the faint shape of a woman, a young woman in an elegant velvet dress.

“Unfortuntely, not quite the sleeping beauty… Dalian, do you think she has the phantom book?” Huey asked Dalian in a bit of a joking tone, but she did not answer.

Talia looked curiously at Huey and Dalian and whispered, “Phantom book…?”

=====

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (Part 1/7)

I’m doing this mainly as a quick test of my own abilities, so if I get ordered to take this down, it’ll come down – enough said… Sorry, blame the uninviting industry.

_(・ω・」 ∠)_)))))))

I’ll be doing one part a day for the whole week.

The translations will not be edited, as I’m focusing mostly on “accuracy and readability in a timely fashion” (this may result in awkward-to-English-readers-formatting). Due to my obsessive work on lyrics and poetry I’ve known myself to spend hours on a single line or stanza, so I’m hoping I’ll be able to develop a separate and quicker mindset for longer format works. One day I hope to work on fiction translations professionally, so basically this is practice.

I thought I’d start with one of my favorite shorts from a series I thoroughly enjoy, so here we go. I hear they’re making an OVA from this too.

「茨姫」”Episode 04: La Belle au bois dormant” from Volume 2 of ダンタリアンの書架/Dantalian no Shoka/Bibliotheca Mystica de Dantalian/The Mystical Archives of Dantalian.

The Japanese title for “Sleeping Beauty” is “Rose-Thorn-Princess”.

Parts: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

=====

Sleeping Beauty, A Princess of Thorns (Prologue)

The mansion was engulfed in flames.

The beautiful white walls, towers, elegant furniture and dressings were all burning.

The fleeing servants’ screams could be heard mixed with the crackling of the wood aflame.

The conflagration dyed the very night sky red.

The halls were filled with a black smoke which threw everything into darkness, only broken by the shafts of light thrown by the scorching flames.

Using that faint light, the master of the mansion tried to find his way out. Dragging along his injured leg, he fled for his life, his face struck with fear.

Then, a faint trace of relief crossed his expression. Finally the smoke began to clear and he could see his way to the front hall. The fire hadn’t yet reached this far, if he could just make it through this room he would be able to escape. He was saved.

The man rushed forward crying out with excitement, but suddenly stopped. He had seen a silhouette coming towards him, cast by the flames.

The shadow was of a young woman, a girl wearing nothing but her nightclothes.

“Y..You’re alright! You made it out too, Florence?!” He said, walking towards her.

“Yes, Father.”

The girl nodded, and a flash of flame showed a smile on her face. In her right arm was a book, an old book with oriental designs. In her right hand, it looked as if she was pulling something heavy.

“What are you doing Florence?! We’ve got to r…”

He tried to hurry his daughter, but his words suddenly trailed off. As he moved towards her she had raised her left arm high above her head.

In her hand was a small axe used for chopping wood.

As the man froze, opening his eyes wide in surprise, the axe came crashing down.

“Wh…” Moaning in the sharp pain screaming from his right shoulder. He looked at the axe, unable to believe what he was seeing.

As his daughter violently ripped the axe out of him, he collapsed, blood spraying from the wound. Fire on the carpet had reached the fresh blood and began to smoke and smell.

“Florence… Why?” The man looked up at his daughter, his eyes tearing up in fear and pain.

She did not answer. Instead, with a smile still on her face she swung down the axe a second time. This time it split the man’s skull. He didn’t move again.

Seeing this, the girl’s expression didn’t change one bit. Only a high pitched laughter escaped her lips.

She threw the axe aside and picked up a bottle that had rolled onto the floor. She poured its contents over the man and for a second the sharp smell of gasoline stung her nose, but it was soon replaced by another foul smell as the man’s body caught fire.

The girl walked out of the entranceway and left the mansion, never looking back as she disappeared into darkness, that book still held in her right arm, as her laughing echoed through the night.

=====

鳥船遺跡 〜 Trojan Green Asteroid

宇宙に捨てられた衛星トリフネ
ーー隔離された楽園に秘封倶楽部の二人が望む

Satellite “Torifune”, Abandoned in Space
–The Two Members of the Sealing Club look upon an Isolated Paradise.

Sorry for the wait! I happened to have surgery the day this came out >.>

This is a wonderful addition to ZUN’s music collection and I am very happy I got to listen to, read, and translate it. I hope you enjoy it too and form a stronger bond with two of Touhou’s best characters.

Notes:

Trojan Asteroid: [wikipedia]

Lagrange Point: [wikipedia]

The narrative switches between calling the space station “Torifune”, “Satellite Torifune”, and “Torifune Ruins”, even it it might seem a little awkward, I’ve tried to match the original text’s naming scheme.

‘true scientists’ – she’s supposed to sound sort of like Okabe Rintarou here.

The “English” title for track 7 was originally printed “Lonely Monstar”.

鳥船遺跡〜Trojan Green Asteroid.
 Torifune Iseki
 Torifune Ruins

01. 衛星トリフネ
   [Eisei Torifune]
   Satellite TORIFUNE

 「ねえ。トリフネ、って有ったでしょ?」
 「トリフネ? ああ、あの事故起こした宇宙ステーションの?」

“Hey, you know about ‘Torifune’ right?”

“‘Torifune’? Ah, you mean that space station that broke down?”

 トリフネは数年前に原因不明の機械トラブルを起こし、宇宙の藻屑
と消えた不遇の宇宙ステーションだ。

“Torifune” is the name of a space station that was lost, unfortunately, a few years ago due to an unexplained mechanical failure.

 「アレって、宇宙に適応出来るかどうかの実験で、色んな動植物を
  乗っけてたんだよね」
 「あ、あーそうねぇ。でもそれがどうしたって言うの?」

“Didn’t they load several plants and animals onto it as part of an experiment to test whether they could adapt to life in space?”

“Yeah, that’s right… But why are you bringing this up now?”

 トリフネには最適化された生態系を乗せていた。限られたエリアだ
けで完結する生態系の実験の為である。その目標はテラフォーミング
の実現だ。
 それも火星や金星などではない。そんな物はSFの世界の話だ。
 テラフォーミングの対象として目されていたのは、地球である。

A highly specialized ecosystem was placed inside the Torifune. It was a test to see whether or not one could construct a complete ecosystem given a strictly confined area. The goal of the experiment was to implement “terraforming”.

However, it wasn’t planned for use on Mars or Venus, that’s the stuff of science fiction.

Ideally, this sort of terraforming would have been used on Earth.

 「もしかしたら、まだ生きているかも知れないの」

“I think they might still be alive.”

02. トロヤ群の密林 (The Trojan Asteroid’s Deep Forest)
   [Toroyagun no Mitsurin]
   Trojan Green Asteroid

 「メリー、何言ってるの? いくらミニ生態系が用意されていたと
  しても人間の手を離れた宇宙ステーションで維持なんて……」

“Merry, what are you talking about? Even if it’s supposed to be a mini-ecosystem, there’s no way it could have maintained itself on a completely abandoned…”

 宇佐見蓮子は苦い笑顔を見せた。

Renko broke into a bitter smile.

 「……メリーがそういうって事は、何かあるんでしょ?」

“…Well if you’re the one saying it, there’s got to be a reason for it right?”

 「うん、最近見えるの。”中”の様子が」

“Well, lately I’ve been able to see inside of it.”

 トリフネは人類の制御を離れ宇宙の藻屑となったと言われていたが、
実は地球ー月系のラグランジュポイントに留まっている事が判っている。

The Torifune is said to have been lost to space, out of humanity’s reach, but the truth is that we know it has stopped at a Lagrange point in respect to the Earth and the Moon.

 万が一を考え、何らかの事故が起きて制御不能になった場合でも
推進装置に影響がない場合、地球への落下防止と未来の回収を考えて、
ラグランジュポイントに自動移動して留まる機構を備えていたのだ。

In case of an emergency and control of the station was lost or the thrusters were malfunctioning, the Torifune was equipped with a system that would automatically maneuver the station towards a Lagrange point in order to prevent it from falling to Earth and make it possible to recover.

03. デザイアドライブ
   Desire Drive

ーー美しくも無秩序な緑の森。

–A green forest, as chaotic as it is beautiful.

 むせ返るような蒸気。異常な熱気はコンピュータの暴走か。

Stifling humidity… is this heat due to the computer malfunctioning?

 人工的な重力空間を幻想的に舞うツノゼミの一種。
 構造色なのか鮮やかな、そして毒々しい色をしたモルフォチョウの一種。

A species of treehopper dances dream-like in this space of artificial gravity.

Is it natural for that morpho butterfly to have such a dazzling and venomous color?

 絶えず水の流れる音はするが、川は見えない。
 縦横無尽に張り巡らされた植物の根が川を覆ってしまったのだろう。

I hear the sound of water flowing, but I can’t see a stream anywhere.

I wonder if the roots of all these plants, strewn all over the place, have completely covered it?

 ジャングルとはこういう物だったのだろうか。

This is what you would call a “jungle” isn’t it?

 マエリベリー・ハーンの探検心をくすぐる。

Maribel Hearn’s adventurous heart was drawn in.

04. フェアリー冒険譚 (Fairytale Adventure)
   [Fairy Boukentan]
   Childlike Adventure

 目に映る光景は、余りに幻想的だった。

What she saw before her was like something out of a fairytale.

 生命力の高い個体ばかり積んだからだろうか、人類の管理から
放たれた動植物は枯れること無く成長を続けていた。

Maybe it was because of all the strong plants selected for the ecosystem, but even out of human’s care and control, nothing withered but only continued to grow.

 窓の外は有害な太陽風吹き荒れる無の世界。
 そこに漂う宇宙船の中は、緑の閉鎖楽園。

Outside the window was a world of nothingness, buffeted by harmful solar winds.

But through it this spaceship was floating, an isolated green paradise.

 余りの異様な光景にマエリベリーは熱病にかかったかの様に
辺りを探索した。
 地上とは異なる安定しない重力感覚がそうさせたのかも知れない。

It was as if Merry had caught a fever from all the strangeness around her, and she excitedly explored the area.

Maybe it was the unstable gravity, unlike Earth’s, that turned her head.

 暫く探索すると蔦が密集した所に、一際違和感のある意匠を発見した。

After exploring a bit she came to a place with thick ivy, and discovered something there that didn’t seem to belong.

 二本の柱に木を渡したものーー鳥居である。

Two pillars with a piece of wood over the top, a Shinto shrine gate.

05. 天鳥船神社 (Ame-no-Torifune Shrine)
   [Amenotorifunejinja]
   Space Shrine

 「……という所で目が覚めるの」
 「え? 夢の話なの?
  ……って言ってもメリーの夢は怖いからなぁ」
 「ところで、何で宇宙ステーションに鳥居があるのかしら」

“…And that’s where I wake up.”

“Huh? You mean to tell me that was a dream?
Well in any case, your dreams really are frightening, Merry.”

“By the way, why would there be a Shinto shrine gate in a space station?”

 衛星トリフネには天鳥船神社が建てられていた。
 一応、宙の交通安全の為に祀られているとされる。もしかしたら
大洪水の際につがいの動物を乗せたとするノアの方舟のイメージも
あるのかも知れない。
 人間はいくら科学が進もうとも、最後は神頼みなのだ。

There was a shrine to Ame-no-Torifune built inside the satellite Torifune.

At any rate, Ame-no-Torifune was worshipped for safe travel through space. It might have been put in place partially due to the fact that the Satellite Torifune resembled Noah’s Arc, which took pairs of animals onboard at the time of a great flood.

No matter how much science advances, in the end we still rely on gods.

 「へー。詳しいわね」
 「その事を知らなかったのにメリーの夢にも鳥居が出てくるのなら、
  もう間違い無いわね」
 蓮子は頷く。
 「この近くにも天鳥船神社、あったよね」
 「しょうが無いわねぇ。
  今夜はそこから”見に行きましょう”」

“You really know a lot don’t you?”

“If you didn’t know that but it still came up in your dream, then there’s no mistake.”

Renko nodded.

“There was a shrine to Ame-no-Torifune close by here wasn’t there?”

“I guess there’s no helping it…
Tonight we’ll go off to “see it” from there.”

06. 夜空のユーフォーロマンス (Night Sky UFO Romance)
   [Yozora no UFO Romance]
   UFO Romance

 「ーーわあ、これが衛星トリフネの内部なの?」
 「素敵でしょ?
  地上じゃこんな世界、中々見られないわ」
 「幻想的ね。隔離された楽園、かー」

“Wow! This is the inside of the satellite Torifune?”

“Wonderful, isn’t it?
It’s not often that you can see a world like this on Earth.”

“It really is dreamlike. An isolated paradise, huh.”

 蓮子とメリーは地上から38万km離れた衛星トリフネの中にいた、
 ……と言っても勿論夢の中である。

Renko and Merry were 380,000 km away from the Earth’s surface, inside the satellite Torifune.

Well, that is, in a dream.

 二人は結界の向こう側を見つけては遊んでいるのだ。

Every time they find a way to the other side of the boundary, they can’t help but go adventuring.

 「ここにある動植物は恐らく殆ど亜種ね。
  このぐらい適応力が高いと、逆に地上には持って行けないかも
  知れないわねぇ……」
 「何、研究者みたいな目で見ているのよ」
 「理系の人間はみんなこうよ……ん? 何の音?」

“Most of the plants and animals here are probably derivative sub-species. With a resistance and vitality like this it’d probably be a bad idea to take them back to Earth…”

“Why are you analyzing all of this like a some sort of researcher?”

“All ‘true scientists’ are like this… huh? What was that?”

 何処からか低いうなり声が聞こえていた。

From somewhere a low growling sound was heard.

07. ハルトマンの妖怪少女 (Hartmann’s Youkai Girl)
   [Hartmann no Youkai Shoujo]
   Lonely Monster

 目の前に立ちはだかる未知の生物。
 羽の生えた獰猛な獣が姿を現した。
 地球に存在する物に例えるのなら、キマイラだろうか。

An unknown beast stood before them.

A ferocious animal with wings on its back.

If you were to describe it in terms of “Earthly” creatures, it would be a chimera.

 「ちょっと、アレって!?」

“Wh…What is that!?”

 「うーん、合成獣かしら。
  でも身体の大きさに比べて翼が小さすぎて、アレでは飛べない。
  ここは閉鎖空間だから遺伝子異常が起きやすいし、
  ウィングキャットみたいな物かもね」

“Hmm, a composite beast?
But its wings are too small compared to its size… it wouldn’t be able to fly.
Since this is a closed environment, genetic abnormalities are more likely to occur…
So this is sort of like a “wing-cat”, hmm…”

 「じゃ、なくて! 何でそんなに冷静なのよ!
  明らかにアレは危険でしょ?」

“Wait what? How can you be so calm?
That thing is clearly dangerous!!”

 「だって、これは夢でしょ? メリーが見せた」

“Well, this is a dream right? One you’re showing me.”

キマイラは二人目掛けて飛びかかってきた。

The chimera leapt towards the two.

08. 天鳥船神社の結界 (The Ame-no-Torifune Shrine’s Barrier)
   [Amenotorifunejinja no Kekkai]
   Space Shrine in Dream

 「ふう、危ない危ない」

“Phew… That was close.”

 「あれ?
  もう終わり?」

“Huh? That’s it?”

 気が付くと地上の天鳥船神社に居た。

When they came to, Merry and Renko were back on Earth at the Ame-no-Torifune shrine.

 「私一人の時は動物は昆虫くらいしか見かけなかったのに。
  あんなの居るなんて聞いてない!
  ……って、蓮子は怖くないの?」

“When I went by myself I only saw insects!
I didn’t know there was going to be something like that there!
Wait… Renko, aren’t you scared?”

 「だって、夢の中だし……それに未知の生物に興奮して
  怖いとか勿体ない」

“Well… it was in a dream, and isn’t it a waste to be scared when you discover a new lifeform?”

 「夢の中……って言ったって怖い物は怖いわよ」

“Even if you saw it’s all a dream, scary things are scary!!”

 「ねえ、もう一回行かない?」

“Hey, can we go again?”

 「え?」

“What?”

 メリーはこの夢がただの夢でない事を知っている。
 あの光景は紛れもない、衛星トリフネの真実なのだ。
 それを見ている自分は真実では無いのだろうか。

Merry knew that this dream wasn’t just a dream.

What they saw was without a doubt the true inside of the satellite Torifune.

If what they were looking at was true, wouldn’t there be some truth to them being there?

 リアルとヴァーチャル、どちらの方が人間に与える影響が大きいのか
判らぬ訳も無いのに。

Real and virtual, it’s clear which has a greater effect on humans…

 「……辞めようよ。
  危ないってば」

“…Let’s stop.
It’s too dangerous.”

 「だってさ、いつでも逃げられるんでしょ? 今みたいに。
  それに知っている?
  夢の中なら人間は何にでもなれるんだわ」

“Well, we can run away whenever we want right? Just like we did now.
Also, don’t you know?
Humans can be whatever they want to be in dreams.”

09. 感情の摩天楼 (Emotional Skyscraper)
   [Kanjou no Matenrou]
   Cosmic Mind

ーー不安定な重力を乗りこなし、ひょうひょうと跳ねる蓮子。

–Renko had overcome the unstable gravity and was leaping lightly all over the place.

 「おもしろーい!
  これだけ身軽ならさっきの怪物が出てきてもきっと余裕だよ!」

“This is so awesome!
With this kind of agility, I’d be fine even if that monster came back again!”

 「不吉なことを言わないの」

“Don’t joke about things like that!”

 「大丈夫だって。
  今の私はさながらシューティングゲームの主人公よ!」

“We’ll be fine!
Right now I’m like the protagonist of a shooting game!”

 蓮子は銃を構えたポーズで撃つ真似をした。

Renko took a pose as if she were shooting a gun.

 「いくら夢でも、光弾が撃てたりはしないと思う。
  これは”私の夢”なんだからね」

“Even if this is a dream, I don’t think you’d be able to shoot anything.
This is -my- dream after all.”

 「判ってるって。
  ここが本当の衛星トリフネ、”鳥船遺跡”だって事もね」

“I know, I know.
But I also know that this is the real satellite Torifune, the ‘Torifune Ruins’.”

 衛星トリフネの事故の原因は一般には「コンピュータのバグ」
だと言われている。しかしバックアップからは原因を特定する
事は出来なかった。
 勝手にラグランジュポイントに移動し始めた衛星トリフネを
止める手段が無く、専門家が
 「日本の技術者は多額の金をかけて宇宙に遺跡を作った」
と揶揄した事を切っ掛けに、この衛星は「鳥船遺跡」と呼ばれる
ようになった。

It is said that the reason the satellite Torifune malfunctioned was because of a computer bug. But there was no way to tell what actually went wrong from the backups of the system.

After the incident, with no way to keep the satellite Torifune from moving to a Lagrange point, an expert said, “Japan’s engineers have spent a large sum of money just to make a ruin in space,” in criticism of the project. Ever since then, the satellite has been called the “Torifune Ruins”.

 「とすると、怪物は鳥船遺跡に実在するのよ。
  ワクワクするわねぇ」

“Which means, that monster really does exist in the Torifune Ruins.
Makes you excited doesn’t it?”

 「んもー。
  いくらこれが夢だとしても、怪我でもしたらどうなるか
  判らないわよ?」

“Cut it out already.
No matter how many times you say it’s just a dream, what happens if you get hurt?”

怪物が二人を襲ったのはその時だった。

At that moment, the monster attacked.

10. 宇宙に浮かぶ幻想郷 (The Gensoukyou Floating in Space)
   [Uchuu ni Ukabu Gensoukyou]
   Paradise Torifune

 衛星トリフネの回収の予算は下りそうに無い。
 何故なら人間の制御の手を離れた時から、もう中の生物は
全滅し、わざわざ回収する程の価値は無いと思われているからだ。

There are no plans to retrieve the satellite Torifune.

After all, it is thought that after humans lost control of the ship, all life inside it ceased, and that there would be no real merit to retrieving the remains.

 まさか地球ー月系のトロヤ群に、断絶された生命の楽園が
存在している等と、誰が考えただろう。

Who would have thought that on an Earth/Moon bound Trojan asteroid, there was an isolated paradise brimming with life?

 蓮子は病院の前で待っていた。

Renko waited in front of the hospital.

 「大丈夫だった?」

“Did everything go alright?”

 「何て事も無いかすり傷よ。
 綺麗な傷で、別にバイ菌も毒も心配ないって」

“It was just a graze. It was a clean cut too, so there’s no risk of infection.”

 「良かったぁ。
  心配したわ、夢から覚めたら腕を怪我しているんだもん」

“Well that’s good.
I was so worried after we woke up and your arm was hurt!”

 「不公平な話ね。蓮子は無傷だったのに……」

“It’s not fair, you made it out perfectly fine…”

あとがき
 Afterword

 どうもZUNです。久しぶりの音楽CDですね。

Hello, it’s ZUN. It’s been a while since I’ve done a music CD like this huh?

 ここ1、2年、宇宙ブームが来ています。ハヤブサや皆既日食が
切っ掛けでしょう。また来月には金環日食が見られます。
 普段は宇宙の事なんか話題にも出さない人が、日常会話に流星群
だとか、国際宇宙ステーションとかの単語を使っているのを見ます。

In the past year or two there’s been a space boom. The Hayabusa space missions and that total solar eclipse are probably to blame. Next month we’ll be having an annular solar eclipse too.

The kind of people who usually don’t talk about space at all with talk about meteor showers in daily conversation and and they’ll be throwing around words like “international space station”.

 こういった全国な宇宙ブームは、子供の頃にもありました。
 その切っ掛けは、間違い無くハレー彗星だったと思います。

This sort of national space boom happened when I was a kid too.
That time it was definitely because of Haley’s Comet.

 みんな安い望遠鏡を買ったり、ゴムのチューブを買ったり(嘘ですよ?)
して、寒い夜に防寒着を着込んで見た記憶があります。

I remember everyone bought cheap telescopes or rubber tubes (*I’m joking*) and bundled up that cold night to watch.

 噂では空を大きく横切る様子が肉眼でも確認出来る物だと言われ
てワクワクしてましたが、実際には非常に小さくお粗末な物でした。

I heard that you could see it cross the sky with the naked eye, and was really excited, but in reality the comet was really small and uninteresting.

 それが原因か判りませんが、その時の宇宙熱は急に冷めていった
ように思えます。
 さあ、今の宇宙ブームはどの位続くでしょうか?

Maybe that’s why, but since then I haven’t been all that interested in space.

Well then, I wonder how long this boom will last?

           上海アリス幻楽団 ZUN (日食見たい)
     Shanghai Alice Illusionary Orchestra ZUN (Wants to see a Solar Eclipse)

Wayfarers

Renko and Merry forever!

First I’m going to start off with a very important news announcement. You may have already heard, but:


鳥船遺跡~Trojan Green Asteroid
 Torifune Iseki
 Torifune Ruins
[Source-JP]

Will be the next Renko and Merry CD, and it comes out at the end of this month!!!! I promise to make translating it a priority.

This is a fan work that follows the same format as ZUN’s Merry and Renko CDs. It heavily references them, so while enjoyable on their own, I suggest that you read about Merry and Renko’s adventures [here] starting at 蓮台野夜行~Ghostly Field Club.

Sorry about the lack of posts and delay in answering comments, but I’ve had a bit of a busy week, and this took me a bit longer to translate than I thought it was going to. Plus, I’ve been a bit busy delving into the world of Haskell and going back to playing the piano some :3

Notes:
Translated with a less strict, more readable paradigm in mind.

“Tohno” is constructed with the symbols “Far” and “Plain”

Renko’s theory on gravitation is wrong (Superpositioning and center of gravity and stuff: Gravity doesn’t work off the difference between masses but the combined pull of masses), but to preserve her integrity, I’m going to say she’s dumbing it down for Merry. THe “those with the same mass/weight wouldn’t affect each other gravitationally, is kind of not completely wrong in that because there is not a great amount of difference in mass the gravitational pull between humans is cancelled out by pretty much everything else.

[Wayfarers]

I: Wayfarers go on a dreamy trip

01: Wayfarers / 少女秘封倶楽部|蓮台野夜行
02: Tohno soundscape / 遠野幻想物語|東方妖々夢
03: Folklore I / 芥川龍之介の河童~Candid Friend|東方風神録
04: Spirited away / 魔界地方都市エソテリア|東方星蓮船
05: Illusory scene in usual landscape / 明日ハレの日、ケの昨日|東方風神録

II: Odd scholars in the circle room

06: Astronomical observation / 夜空のユーフォーロマンス|東方星蓮船
07: Kaleidoscopic film projector / 幻想機械~Phantom Factory|夢違科学世紀
08: Folklore II / 蓬莱伝説|蓬莱人形
09: Parallel / 向こう側の月|大空魔術
10: Ouantum vacuum ocean / 夢と現の境界|夢違科学世紀

III: Hallucination

11: Galactic railroad / 大空魔術~Magical Astronomy|大空魔術
12: Terminal station / 衛星カフェテラス|大空魔術
13: Folklore III / 平安のエイリアン|東方星蓮船
14: Serene sky seen from the moon / 最も澄みわたる空と海|卯酉東海道
15: Pleasant occult circle / 少女秘封倶楽部|蓮台野夜行

I: Wayfarers go on a dreamy trip

 いつものように境界の切れ目を探しに、蓮子とメリーはヒロシゲで京都から東京へ向かった。東京からは在来線に乗り継ぎ、先ほどまでとは打って変わって車内にはガタゴトと騒々しい音が響いている。

Renko and Merry took the “Hiroshige” train from Kyoto to Tokyo, off again in search of gaps in the boundary between this world and the next. From Tokyo, they transferred to an older rail line that, unlike the one before, rattled back and forth loudly.

「いくら東北人がのんびりしているからって新幹線が無いわけでもないのに、
 なんでわざわざローカル線に乗ろうなんて言うの?」
「スクリーンに映像が流れているだけの電車の旅なんてうんざりしていたのよ。
 新幹線だと早過ぎて景色が楽しめないでしょう」
「でも新幹線を使ったって遠野までは何時間も掛かるのよ」
「ま、急ぐ旅でもないんだし、のんびり行きましょうよ」
「どこかで聞いた事のあるような台詞ね」

“No matter how the people of Tohoku like to take their time, it’s not like they don’t have any bullet trains. Why did you want us to take this local train so much?”

“I’d just gotten fed up with this new kind of train travel where all you get to see are pictures projected on a screen. In any case, bullet trains just go too fast for you to enjoy the scenery, you know?”

“But even if we took the bullet train, it still would have taken us hours for us to get all the way to Tohno.”

“Well, it’s not like we’re in any hurry. Let’s just enjoy ourselves.”

“I’ve got the feeling I’ve heard you say that before…”

 河童を探しに行こう、と蓮子が持ちかけたのは数週間前。件のカウンセリング以来、メリーが無意識に結界を飛び越えている事に蓮子は気付いていた。結界の向こう側の世界を実際に観測すべく、最近のオカルトサークルの活動は行われている。

Renko declared she wanted to go searching for a kappa a few weeks earlier. Ever since that one counseling session, Renko realized Merry had been unconsciously crossing over the boundary into another world. So lately, their occult club has been actively in search of a way to directly observe that “other side”

 民俗伝承の中に境界を越える何らかの手掛かりがあると考えるのはごく自然だ。メリーの見た夢の中では河童は大鼠などの魑魅魍魎が跋扈していた。そしてそれらに対する知識は境界をより明確なものにする。
 河童と言えば件の蓮台野結界穴捜索でも訪れた遠野。毎年蓮子が東京へ彼岸参りに来ている事に乗じて、旅行がてら再び訪れてみようというわけだ。

It’s natural to think there might be some sort of clue to crossing the worlds’ boundary in folklore. In Merry’s dreams, there were kappa and large rats, demons and other such fantastic creatures running all over the place. The more that is known about those sorts of things, the clearer the boundary that divides both worlds.

Speaking of kappa, the best place to go searching would be the same Tohno Renko and Merry had found looking for gaps in the boundary in Rendai-no. The plan was for Merry to tag along with Renko on the Higan-Mairi trip she takes every year to Tokyo, and from there, they would take a detour to visit Tohno once again.

 夢や境界の切れ目、結界の向こう側を見る事の出来るメリーは、今は飽きもせず子供のように窓の外を眺めている。蓮子はというと、電車と電車の継ぎ目のガラスに映った、現実とは逆に流れていく風景を楽しんでいた。

Merry, whose eyes could see the gaps in dreams and boundaries and look beyond them, now stared tirelessly out the window, like an excited child. Renko on the other hand, stared at the panes of glass set between the train cars and enjoyed how their reflection of the landscape flowed backwards, in inverted reality.

遠野と呼ばれる地域一帯はかつては湖で、”トオヌップ”、丘のある湖と呼ばれていた。現在の遠野盆地に当たる地域が湖、八幡山が島として湖の真ん中に在ったという。

The area now called “Tohno” was once a lake, and went by the name “Tohnup” or “The Lake with a Hill”. The valley of Tohno was underwater, and Mt. Hachiman was an island in its center.

「アイヌ語でトオは丘、ヌップが湖。それらが訛って遠野という地名になったわけ」
「相変わらず蓮子は物知りね。遠くに見える野原だから遠野だと思っていたわ」
「確かにそれも間違ってはいないと思うけれど」
「…で、どうしてこんな所を歩いているわけ?」
「河童淵みたいな観光スポットは世俗化され過ぎているからね。
 ああいう場所に訪れる人の殆どは河童の存在なんて信じていない」
「だから僻地中の僻地に行こうというわけね。でも本当に遠いわ。足が棒になりそう」

“In the Ainu language, ‘toh’ is ‘hill’ and ‘nup’ is ‘lake’. Over time the pronunciation changed to the ‘Tohno’ that it is today.”

“You really do know a lot. I thought that it was ‘Tohno’ because it’s a ‘plain that you can see from far away’.”

“Well, that’s not exactly wrong either.”

“So… Why are we walking around in a place like this?”

“The usual kappa spots have become nothing more than tourist attractions nowadays. Most of the people that visit those places don’t don’t really believe kappa exist.”

“So, that’s why we’re out here in the absolute middle of nowhere…? But we’ve really been walking a long time. my feet are numb.”

「芥川龍之介の河童では、主人公は河童の国に暮らすのよ」
「もし河童を見付けたとしても私は絶対にそんな所には住みたくないわ」
「私は面白いと思うけどね。夢のないエゴだらけの日本に住んでいる方がよっぽど莫迦莫迦しいわ」
「あら、案外日本も悪くないわよ。ご飯もおいしいし」
「兎に角、赤い顔をした人型の生き物を見付けたら要注意ね。遠野の河童は赤い筈だから」
「その情報だけだと、ただの酔っ払いの可能性もあるわね」
「遠野の酔っ払いなら、伝承について有力な情報を持っているかも知れないわ」
「仮に酔っ払いが河童を見たなんて言っても、昔の新聞記事みたいにデマかも知れないけどね」
「それから天狗には行き逢わないように注意しないとね。手足をもがれてしまうから」
「ねえ、やっぱり河童探しはやめにしない?」

“In Akutagawa Ryuunosuke’s ‘Kappa’ the protagonist lives in ‘The Land of the Kappa’.”

“Even if we find a kappa, I’d never want to live in a place like that.”

“I think it’s pretty interesting though. Better than living in this dreamless ego-ridden Japan.”

“Really? Japan’s actually not that bad. I mean, the food’s good and all.”

“Anyway, be on your guard if you come across something human-like with a red face. Tohno’s kappa are supposed to be red.”

“With only that description to go on, it could just be any old drunk.”

“But if it’s a drunk from Tohno, we might be able to get valuable information about the folklore.”

“Even if a drunk said he saw a kappa, it’s not like we should believe him. That’s the kind of story a tabloid would have run, back when they were popular.”

“Also, be careful not to run into a Tengu, You’ll get your arms and legs ripped off.”

“Hey, why don’t we give up on this whole ‘searching for kappa’ thing?”

そんな他愛無い会話を続けながら、彼女達は歩を進めていく。

On and on with such banter, the girls kept walking.

「今日はやけに静かだわ」
「言われてみると変ね。この時期なら虫が五月蝿いくらい鳴いていても良さそうなものだけれど」
「みんな寝てしまったのかしら」
「冬眠にはちょっと早いわね」

“It really is quiet today though.”

“Now that I think about it, it’s strange. Usually around this time all the insects would be making so much noise you’d want to plug your ears.”

“I wonder if they’re all asleep?”

“It’s still too early for them to be hibernating.”

その時、二人は不意にどこからへ放り出されるような感覚を覚えた。
メリーの眼には得体の知れない影がはっきり映っている。

Then suddenly, Renkoa and Merry felt as if they were being thrown into something.

Merry could see with her eyes a strange shadow, distinctly formed.

(まだこっちに来てはいけないよ、もう帰った方がいい)

(You shouldn’t come this way yet, you should go.)

 頭の中で声が聴こえる。
恐怖や不安感は沸き起こらず、むしろ心地よささえ感じる。

She heard this voice inside her head.
Rather than being scared or anxious, it put her at ease.

(あなた達は誰?この先には何があるの?)

(Who are you? What lies ahead?)

(………)

(………)

(確か…この辺りは昔刑場があった場所ね…)

(If I’m right… this place used to be an execution ground…)

 目の前をゆらゆらと、まるで大きな蛍のようなぼんやりとした光が明滅し、無数の陽炎のように空間を歪ませている。風景も思考もざらつき、意識の焦点が合わず、状況を冷静に分析しようという蓮子の試みは上手く行かない。無数の空間の歪みが生じる度にそこに吸い寄せられるかのような感覚に陥る。

Back and forth before their eyes, a light like a large firefly flickered, bending the space around it like an endless number of mirages. Renko tried to calmly analyze what was going on, but the both her field of vision and thoughts gathered noise, and as her consciousness lost its focus, she was unable to continue. Every time space bent it felt as if they were being drawn into the disturbance.

(これからも、良い旅を)

(Farewell, now and hereafter…)

「ここは誰?私はどこ?」
「突っ込まないわよ。私達はどうやら歩いているうちに眠ってしまったようね」
「眠ったまま歩いていたら二人揃って用水路に突っ込んでしまったというわけね。間抜けな話だわ」
「よく覚えていないけどそうだったかしらね」
「それにしてもここは本当にのどかでいい所ね。なんだか気分が落ち着く」

“Who is this place, and where is my name?”

“Not funny – It looks like we fell asleep and kept on walking.”

“Then, we sleepwalked right into this ditch? That’s ridiculous.”

“I don’t really remember, but that’s probably just what happened.”

“Even so, this place is sort of all right. It sort of calms you down.”

 二人は互いにそれ以上言葉を発する事もなく、そのまま今回の活動を終える事にした。

After that, neither Renko or Merry said a word, and that was the end of their search.

 結局今回は河童を見つける事は出来なかったが、蓮子には境界の向こう側の世界を観測できたと確信していた。先刻見た夢は、死の世界への入り口のようであったとメリーは思う。

Even though they weren’t able to find a kappa this time, Renko was sure that she had seen the other side of the boundary. Merry thought that the dream they just saw was an entrance to the world of the dead.

 それぞれの思索をのせて、夕日の逆光の中に二人の電車は吸い込まれていった。

Both of them sat, seperately lost in thought, and they train they boarded was engulfed in the light of the setting sun.

II: Odd scholars in the circle room

「はあ、私達も早く月に行きたいわねぇ」

“Haa… I’d love it if we could just get up and go to the moon.”

 秘封倶楽部のサークル室では、今日も得体の知れない活動が行われていた。サークル室と言っても、大学の研究棟にある未使用の部屋を間借りしているだけである。オカルトサークルなどという怪しげな名目で部屋を借りるのは難しいはずだが、そこは要領の良い蓮子が上手く言いくるめて使っている。メリーが窓から月を眺めている最中、蓮子が騒がしい音を立てながら何やら機材の準備を行なっていた。

The Sealing Club was conducting their suspicious activites yet again today in their club room. Though it wasn’t really a special room, just a spare room in the university’s research building they happened to be borrowing. It was difficult to borrow a room for a club that focused on the “occult”, but with a bit of clever wording by Renko, they were able to take it. Merry was staring at the moon outside the window. Renko was making a lot of noise preparing some sort of machine.

「蓮子、そのやたらと大きな機材は何なの?」
「これはプロジェクターね。部屋の奥に大量のレーザーディスクがあったから再生してみようかと思って」
「今時レーザーディスクだなんてとんだ時代錯誤ね」
「だからきっと掘り出し物が入っているに違いないわ」

“Renko, what is that huge machine anyway?”

“It’s a projector. I found a lot of laser discs in the back, so I thought we should play them.”

“Laser discs? In this day and age?”

“I know, but I’m sure there’s something great on one of these that’s just been overlooked.”

 蓮子がプロジェクターを起動すると、早速スクリーンに古めかしい映像が映しだされた。

Once Renko started the projector, the screen on the opposite side immediately reflected an old looking image.”

「これは蓬莱山が描かれた図のようね」
「随分綺麗に映るわね。今のプロジェクターはハイテクなのねぇ」
「このスクリーンはヒロシゲにあるカレイドスクリーンと同じものよ」
「こんなのどこから持ってきたの?」
「今日は確か映研はお休みだった筈だわ」
「悪い子ね」

“That looks like it’s an illustration of Mt. Hourai”

“The picture shows up really clearly… That projector’s pretty high tech isn’t it?”

“Well, the screen’s the same type of ‘kaleidoscreen’ that the ‘Hiroshige’ has.”

“Where did you get that from?”

“Well the film society’s not meeting today, and I thought…”

“What a troublemaker…”

 次の頁へ移行してみると、見覚えのある風景が飛び込んできた。

The next slide showed a landscape both were familiar with.

「まるであの退屈なヒロシゲの車内にいるみたいね。これは富士山だわ」
「でもちょっと変わってるわね。麓の森に炎に包まれた人間?と、そこから紅い月へ立ち昇る煙が描かれているわ」
「確かにこんな富士山の図は見た事が無いわね。でもどこかで見覚えがあるような…」

“It’s like we’re riding on that boring ‘Hiroshige’ again. This’ll be Mt. Fuji.”

“But something’s different about it. In the forest at the foot of the mountain, there’s something engulfed in flames… a person…? and the smoke reaching all the way to the crimson moon.”

“I guess I haven’t seen a picture of Mt. Fuji like this either. But it feels like something I’ve seen before…”

 メリーは以前見た夢を思い出していた。
 紅いお屋敷、竹林で見た光、大鼠、そして全身に火を纏った少女。
 月を眺めるメリーの目には、相変わらず天女の舞いや兎が映っている。

Merry remembered the dream she had.

A scarlet mansion, light in a bamboo thicket, and a girl covered in flames.

When Merry looked at the moon, there were rabbits and nymphs dancing, just as always.

「私たちと月の間は真空の壁があるのよね。やっぱり簡単には向こう側の世界に渡る事は出来ないのかしら」
「真空と言っても全く何も無い訳ではないし、私たちの世界に大きな影響を及ぼしているわ」
「ふーん、そうなの?」
「量子力学の世界では真空中でもエネルギーの揺らぎによって粒子が絶えず生成、
 消滅を繰り返しているというのが定説なの」
「良く分からないわね」
「…そうね、例えば重力も真空と物体との相互作用で生じているという説もあるわ」
「どういうこと?」
「空の箱の上にゴムの膜を張って、その上に全く違う重さの鉄球を一つずつ乗せたらどうなるかしら」
「普通に考えれば、重い方に軽い方が転がっていくわよね」
「それと同じように、質量が大き物質が真空を歪ませて、
 その結果違う重さの物体間に重力が発生しているのかも知れないというわけ」
「それじゃ同じくらいの重さの私たち人間同士は重力で引き付けられる事もないのかしら。
 それってあまりロマンチックじゃないわね」

“There’s a vacuum between us and the moon, isn’t there? I guess it’s just not that simple, crossing over into another world.”

“Even though we say it’s a vacuum, it’s not like there’s nothing there, and it exerts a lot of influence on our world.”

“Hmm? Really?”

“According to quantum physics, there’s a theory that even in a vacuum, particles are constantly produced by energy waves that then fizzle out, endlessly created and exhausted.”

“I don’t really understand.”

“Well… There’s also the theory that gravity exists as a product of the interactions between an object and a vaccuum.”

“What do you mean?”

“Think of an empty box with something rubbery stretched over it. What do you think happens when you set a couple of ball bearings all with different weights on top?”

“Well, the lighter ones would roll towards the heavier ones, right?”

“Sort of in the same way, there’s a theory that says massive objects bend the space around them, causing gravity between objects of different masses.”

“Wouldn’t that mean that we humans, having about the same weight wouldn’t gravitationally effect each other? That’s pretty unromantic.”

「人間は重力なんて無くたってお互い惹かれあう事もあるし、縛られずに自由に飛び回る事だってできるのよ」
「それもそうね」
「それに一度出会ったら大体死ぬまで忘れないでしょ」
「それは怖いわね」
「結果も真空のように媒介となって、こちらとあちらの世界、相互に影響を与えているのかもね」
「哲学的ね。物理の世界も案外面白いのね」
「こういうものが面白いと思えるならメリーは幸せだわ」

“Even if you don’t have gravity acting between humans, there are plenty of other things that draw us together. Plus, the lack of a strong gravity between people allows us an unbound freedom.”

“I guess that’s true too.”

“The alternative would mean that once you had met someone, you wouldn’t be able to forget them as long as you lived.”

“That’s sort of scary…”

“I’d say that the ‘boundary’ acts as a mediator, sort of like the vacuum of space, between this world and the other side. Both worlds probably affect each other across it.

“That’s pretty philisophical. I guess physics can be pretty interesting after all.”

“The world would be a better place if more people thought that way…”

 物理学の研究対象がより小さい、より高いエネルギーの領域に入ればそれを観測するための装置を作り出すのは事実上不可能となる。
 観測による物理学は既に行き詰まり、今世紀は前世紀ほどの成果が挙がらないという悲観論も強い。
 物理学だけでなくあらゆる分野で閉塞感を感じている人も多く、そういう時代なのだろうと蓮子は思う。
 これから暫くは地道な理論構築と解釈を続ける一方で、突破口となるような発想を考え、想像しなければならないのだろう。

As the subjects of physical study have grown smaller and smaller on one end, and larger and larger on the other, the amount of energy needed to observe their related phenomena has become impossible to attain.

Observable physics has hit a dead end, and there’s a strong pessimism associated with the fact that physics cannot produce as many results as it did before.

And it’s not just physics. There are many people in other scientific fields that believe things just aren’t going anywhere anymore. Renko thinks that it’s just the kind of age we’re in.

For the time being, while continuing to establish theories and various explanations, we need to consider ideas that might lead to breakthroughs, and just imagine from there.

 宗教としての科学が世界に浸透している現代においても、科学に絶対は無い。

Now that an almost religious science permeates the world, there are no absolutes.

 観測や証明が出来ないからこそ夢を持たせる事が出来る、オカルト色の残る今の時代もそう悪くはないのかも知れないと蓮子は考えていた。

Because what we consider cannot be observed or proven, it is possible to hold on to dreams. Renko thought that age they were living in was left with a feeling of the occult, and that it wasn’t so bad after all.

III: Hallucination

「おかしいわね」
「どうしたの?何かがおかしいのはいつもの事じゃない」
「それはそうだけど…でもやっぱり変だわ。さっきから時間が全く進んでいないもの」

“Well that’s strange.”
“What’s wrong? Isn’t there always something ‘strange’ going on?”
“Well yeah… but something’s definitely wrong. Since just a little while ago, time has completely stopped moving.”

 蓮子には星を見ただけで時間が分かる能力がある。
 分かるのは世界中どこにいともJSTだけだが、ごく正確に読み取ることが出来る。

Renko has an ability that allows her to tell the time just by looking at the stars.

No matter where she is in the world, it’s always in Japanese Standard Time, but she can tell that time to a very precise degree.

「考えられる原因は3つあるわね。
 1.蓮子の頭がおかしくなった
 2.実は今夢の中にいる、
 3.本当に時間が止まっている」

“Well there are three possibilities as far as I can tell:
1. There’s something wrong with your head.
2. Right now we’re dreaming.
3. Time has really stopped.”

 やおら蓮子はメリーの頬を掴むと、一思いに左右に引っ張った。

Renko slowly approached Merry and put her hands around her face, and then slapped her cheeks from both sides.

「痛い痛い痛い。いきなり何するのよ蓮子」
「これが夢なのかどうか確かめてみようと思って」
「そういうのは普通、自分ので確かめるものよ」
「私にはこれが夢ではない確信があるからね。私の頭はいつだって正常だから、
 となると考えられるのは3番ね」
「…ひょっとして怒ってる?」
「そんな事はないわ。むしろ今なら海の上だって駆け回れそうな気分」
「やっぱりどこか変よ。熱でもあるんじゃない?」
「私は正常だって言ってるでしょ。この状況が異常だと判断出来る程度にはね」

“What was that for!? That hurt you know!”

“I just thought I’d make sure we’re not dreaming.”

“Don’t you usually do that to yourself?”

“Well I’m sure this is not a dream, and I know there’s nothing wrong with my head, so it must be number 3.”

“…Are you angry at me?”

“Not at all. Right now I feel like I could run around on the surface of the sea.”

“Something’s definitely wrong with you. Are you sure you don’t have a fever?”

“Didn’t I already tell you I’m fine? Well enough to know there’s something going on.”

 いつの間にか周囲は球場の夜空に覆われてしまったかのような光景に変わっていた。
 上を見上げれば星が瞬き、下を見下ろせば星が瞬き、右を見ても左を見ても星が瞬いている。

Suddenly everything around Renko and Merry was blacked out and replaced by the night sky.

If you looked up, down, left or right, there were stars twinkling.

「何だかいつもより随分テンションが高いわね」
「当たり前でしょう。あら、月がこんなに近いわ。-何等級かしら」

“Well you look more excited than usual.”

“Of course I am! Ah, look how close the moon is! I wonder what its apparent magnitude is.”

 月はもう球状である事がはっきり見て取れるくらい近付いて、目の前には灰色の地表が広がっていた。

Renko and Merry were close enough to the moon to see its spherical shape and its grey surface spread out before them.

「あのクレーター辺りにあるのは駅かしら」
「そう見えるわね、あそこに喫茶店があるわ。お茶にしましょう」

“I wonder if that’s a station down there by that crater.”

“That’s what it looks like, and there’s a cafe. Let’s have some tea.”

「蓮子は私たちが普通に月でお茶している事にあんまり驚いていないみたいね」
「もし本当に結界の向こう側の世界があるとすれば、そこでは私達の世界の物理法則は通用しない筈だからね」
「どうしてそう言い切れるの?」
「永遠に燃え続ける人間なんてあり得ないし、仮にそんなものが存在するなら常識なんて
 最初から捨てて臨まないとね」
「…夢の話、よく憶えてたわね」
「そんな重要な話を忘れるくらいならひもの研究を忘れた方がましだわ。
 そんな事より、この辺りに兎はいないの?」
「見える範囲にはいないみたいね。あ、UFO」

“Renko, you don’t look surprised that we’re here drinking tea on the moon.”

“If there really is a world on the other side of the boundary, our laws of physics definitely wouldn’t transfer over.”

“How can you say something like that?”

“Well it’d be impossible for a human to burn for all eternity, and even if something like that existed, we’d have to throw out all our common sense.”

“…You really remember my dreams well.”

“I’d rather forget string theory than something that important. Anyway, are there any rabbits around here?”

“None as far as I can see… Ah, A UFO.”

 空を見ると確かにそこには小学生が絵に描いたようなUFOと呼ばれる形状の物体が往来していた。

Looking up at the sky, sure enough there was one, and it looked just like the kind of UFO an elementary school kid would draw, floating back and forth.

「あんな典型的な形状のUFOが実在するなんて驚きだわ」
「もしかすると私たちの持っているイメージによってただそう見えているだけかも知れないわよ」
「確かに、ありとあらゆる観測なんて所詮は主観の総体だからね」
「実は今私達は月面にいるような気がしているだけ、とも考えられるわ」
「相対性精神学ではそういう状況を何て言うのかしら…それでもこれは単なる夢とは異質なものには違いないわね」
「そうかもね。折角ここまで来たんだから宇宙人の一人や二人会ってみたいわ」
「宇宙人は八本足?それとも十本足?」
「さあ。ひょっとすると鵺のような怪物かも知れないわね」
「想像だけで異形の怪物にされる方もたまったものじゃないかもね」
「それにしても、ここからだと地球は本当に綺麗に見えるわね」

“I’m surprised that such a typical UFO would really exist.”

“It might just be that it only looks that way because that’s the way we see it.”

“Well every observation is really from a subjective point of view after all.”

“It might even be that we just feel like we’re on the surface of the moon.”

“What do you call this sort of thing in relative psychology again…? Even so, this is definitely not the same as an ordinary dream.”

“You’re probably right. Since we’ve come all this way, I’d like to meet an alien or two.”

“Do you think the aliens have eight legs? Or maybe ten?”

“Who knows, it they could be monsters, like Nue.”

“Though I guess it wouldn’t be fair to the aliens to imagine that they’re monsters before we even meet them.”

“Even so, the earth really looks beautiful from here.”

 彼女達のいる場所から見える地球は青く澄み渡っている。
 真っ暗な宇宙に突然現れたホログラムのように異質で、とても現実の光景とは思えない。
 暫く眺めていると徐々にその姿は大きくなり、二人はそこに吸い込まれていくような感覚を覚えた。

From where they were the earth looked clear and blue as it crossed over.

It was as if it was a hologram that suddenly appeared in the darkness of space, and didn’t feel real at all.

After a while of looking at it, the earth grew larger, and Renko and Merry felt as if they were being drawn into it.

「…時間切れみたいね。この件に関してはもう少し調査が必要だわ」
「とりあえず、ここにある石とティーカップを持って帰りましょう」

“…It looks like we’re out of time. We still have more we have to investigate though.”

“Well for now, let’s just take a rock and a teacup and go home.”

 秘封倶楽部のサークル室では、今日も怪しげな活動が行われている。
 蓮子が何やらPCに向かって作業をしている傍ら、メリーは優雅にお茶を楽しんでいる。

The Sealing Club was conducting their suspicious activites yet again today in their club room.

Renko was working at some sort of PC, and Merry was elegantly enjoying her tea.

「何やってるの、蓮子」
「知り合いに頼んでこの前の石の分析を依頼していたの。で、その結果がこれ」
「見ても何も分からないわ。石の分析なんて蓮子なら自分で出来るんじゃないの?」
「私は専門が全然違うわよ。それに分析装置を設置している大学は限られているし」
「ふーん。それで、どうだったの?」
「成分的には間違いなく過去の月の石のデータと一致しているわね。
 もちろん本当に月のものかどうか確証はないけれど」
「二人とも夢遊病になってどこかの博物館の石を盗み出したという可能性もあるわね」
「寝ている間に犯罪者になっていたというわけね。さて、そろそろ行きましょうか」
「行くってどこに?」
「結界の入り口捜索よ。今度は気付いたら踏み越えていたなんて迂闊な事はないようにしないとね」
「…はいはい、蓮子は本当にバイタリティにあふれているわね」

“What are you doing Renko?”

“I asked a friend of mine to analyze that rock we brought back, and here are the results.”

“It not like I’d understand anything about them, and couldn’t have you done the analysis yourself?”

“It’s not my specialty, and there aren’t that many universities that have the equipment to analyze this stuff.”

“Hmm. So, what about it?”

“The data from the analysis perfectly matches the data we have on other moon rocks. But that doesn’t mean we can prove we really got it from the moon.”

“I guess that we could have been sleepwalking, broken into a museum and stolen it.”

“So, while we were sleeping we’ve become criminals, huh? Anyway, let’s go.”

“Where?”

“Searching for gaps in the boundary. This time, let’s try to notice before we’ve already stepped in one.”

“Alright, alright. You’re really overflowing with vitality aren’t you?”

 月面への不思議な旅行を終えた二人は、平穏でほんの少しだけ刺激的な日々に戻ろうとしていた。

Having finished their strange journey to the moon, Renko and Merry returned to their somewhat peaceful, somewhat stimulating days.

***

all tracks arranged & txt / amo
jacket design & illust / hafuri
original / ZUN

Violet Lotus Requiem

Sometimes Engrish must be left as Engrish. It’s more powerful that way.

First of all I’d like to simply point to Merami, the lead vocalist of Foreground Eclipse, and that she is the same person as めらみぽっぷ (Merami Pop); so you should all search the [Lyrics Navigation Page] for both terms.

Byakuren is a kind, strange, and scary person. I’ll use a small snippet from “Love and Peace” by Simadoriru to illustrate (at the bottom).

I think it’s got translation notes etc on danbooru – but if anyone wants me to translate it, I’m all for it.

―数日後、彼女を退治しにやってきた僧侶を乗せた舟が近づいた。
舟には僧侶の他にも数人の人間が乗っていた。
彼女はありったけの力で、脅してやろうと思った。
ありったけの力で、僧侶の法力を破ってやろうと思った。

A few days later the boat that carried the monk who had come to eradicate her approached. On the boat were a number of other humans. With all her strength she thought she might threaten them. With all her strength, she thought she would break the power of that monk.

しかし彼女の予想が外れ、僧侶は完全に無防備であった。
ただの人間より手応えが無かったのだ。
あっという間に舟は沈み、数名の人間は全て海に投げ出された。

But things didn’t go as she had planned; the monk was completely defenseless. She felt nothing more than she would from an ordinary human. In an instant, the ship had sunk, and all the humans were thrown into the sea.

東方星蓮船~Undefined Fantastic Object.より一部抜粋

An excerpt from Touhou Seirensen~Undefined Fantastic Object.

Sorry to do a post like this while there’s other stuff to be done and all, but sometimes I think it’s sad I don’t get to give enough attention to some song lyrics that are in Engrish. ^_^; Also, I’m curious about what I should do with posts like [Gungnir] which are more like picture book translations than comics, or if anyone’s interested in me doing more of them, or only if I have scans of those books etc…. Comment if you have an opinion either on that, or on the song.

This time the color’s only there to bring attention to the lyrics, there’s nothing to translate. ^_^;

Violet Lotus Requiem
感情の摩天楼~Cosmic Mind|東方星蓮船~Undefined Fantastic Object.
vocal / めらみぽっぷ
circle / Pizuya’s Cell (ぴずやの独房)
event / C79
album / Violet Lotus Requiem

While feeling keeps away, only cold is increasing.
Before breaking, I want you to help.
One life disappears.

What I do not.
It has been taken.
The reason made into desertion was got to know.
Their eyes are not averted.
Therefore, I want you to awake from sleep.

Deluding oneself with a lie or a bluff was continued.
It is not so miserable as the heart dying.

It has frozen.
I want you to touch you and to melt.
I want you to melt with your love.
Your eyes where hope in the world without anything.
Therefore, revive me.

What I do not.
It has been taken.
The reason made into desertion was got to know.
Their eyes are not averted.
Therefore, I want you to awake from sleep.

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