Chapter 8

Bonds

After fighting my way through the life-and-death struggle with the bear, I first of all decided to make a few experiments with my lifeline, magic.

So now I'm still in the same room, sitting on the floor and thinking carefully.

Knowing yourself is important.

First, there's simply the power.

You can say that the results allow me to have quite high hopes in that regard.

The magic of level 4 me has felled the level 10 bear in one strike.

Well, I also hit the bear with a lightning strike from the Lightning Rod, so another test is required to see if one strike really is enough though.

One strike, or not.

If I am to fight alone, that difference is huge.

I can't think that the Lightning Rod's lightning strikes are more powerful than my Thunder, so I can defeat bears with two strikes at most, but there's a trap in the cast time and the cooldown.

 

Thunder: 10s cast time, 10s cooldown.

 

If acting in a party, those time windows shouldn't cause problems.

Of course, that assumes the party has someone holding up the frontline.

 

"Without a tank, the backline can't shine...?"

 

The firepower is plenty though.

So, does a Mage require a party after all?

For argument's sake, let's assume I hadn't put my leftover Attribute points into Agility, but had gone for Endurance 2 and Protection 3.

Would I have survived my run-in with the bear?

Endurance 2 is average.

Protection 3 is good.

And since I can't change Mind 5, Agility would be 0.

With that setup, I cannot expect to slip past the earlier paw attacks like I had.

So would I have taken the attack and survive?

 

"An attack from those paws that pulverize horse and cow necks?

 

That's probably impossible.

The level difference was too big, too.

So, should I have gone full-out with Protection 5?

That would've changed nothing, either.

Normally thinking, you can do nothing with Endurance 0.

For a Mage going solo, the way I spent my Attribute points isn't wrong.

Endurance 2, Protection 5, Mind 3 is an option, too, but decreasing its greatest charm, the firepower, goes against my thoughts a little.

A Mage equipping a shield and standing on the frontline.

Well, there are probably a few of those in this world.

 

(Thunder, activate)

 

Let's try shooting it at a nearby wall for a test.

Actually, I've already tried it before. I don't particularly need to target a monster to use magic.

I can probably use it against humans, too, of course.

During the 10s cast time, I can actually feel my body generate the mana required to shoot the magic.

It doesn't mean that I actually need to say a 10 second long chant.

"Thunder!"

 

Lightning raced towards the wall.

 

"I see."

 

And apparently I don't have to say the chant at the end, either.

However, the lightning feels darker than when I did say it.

I need to test it in practice later, but I can probably think of it having less power, too.

And then there is the cooldown.

Maybe my body is lacking the mana after using the magic, but at least I feel languid.

The cooldown time feels like the time it takes for my body to restore the mana inside it from the air surrounding me.

Why? Because even now lightly glowing particles gather around my body and I start slowly feeling better.

The time that takes? Ten seconds.

 

———so, can I cast another spell before that time is up?

 

I once more willed the magic to activate.

The light particles that had still been gathering around my body stopped that and switched to magic activation.

The cooldown was stopped and my sensation changed to that of mana being generated from within my body.

 

"Thunder!"

 

I dropped against the wall again.

———the moment the spell activated, a dizzying feeling of exhaustion assaulted me.

This seems like the side effect from not accommodating the cooldown, in other words the time it takes for my body to naturally recover its mana.

Let me focus on recovering for a while and steady my breath.

So this is how it feels to run out of gas.

But if this is it, I can ignore the cooldown when push comes to shove.

There's no need to push myself too much, but knowing it never hurts.

Most importantly, if I'm solo I can only use this as a finisher.

If I can't win with it yet make myself stagger this much, it's over.

Applying it to this place I'm in right now, it's effective against the bears if I can't defeat them with one hit.

I'll still have to work a means to overcome the 10s casting time no matter what though.

 

"Hmm..."

 

Then there is the amount of mana I can store in my body, doesn't it change a lot with level and Attributes?

 

Apprentice Mage Level 5

 

I leveled up earlier, so I'm level 5 now.

Some time I'll need to try out how much I can ignore the cooldown without running out of gas.

And then———

 

Magic: Thunder (Proficiency 1)

 

This Proficiency entry is fairly intriguing.

Shooting the wall like I've been doing is not counted.

It likely increases by defeating enemies and the like.

 

(Proficiency, huh)

 

I have various ideas on it, but only time will tell what it exactly does.

And with that, I've finished the verifications I can do myself, I guess?

What's going to happen once I learn Double Cast and Cast Time Reduction?

There are so many things I still don't understand.

 

"... a mentor would be nice..."

 

I really want one.

I really want many things.

But, well, now's not the time for that.

How am I going to get back?

That's the question.

I can fight against bear-class enemies while buying time for ten seconds.

 

"Hmmm... it seems really short, yet long..."

 

Ten seconds.

That's around the time a world athlete takes to run 100m.

Thinking about it like that, it seems like the blink of an eye.

Now, what should I do...

 

———and while I was thinking that, the entrance magic circle started shining.

 

Eh, someone's coming?

In the middle of the night?

Wait, so did I.

Just sitting around and blanking out felt dangerous, so I moved into the corner of the room and readied the Lightning Rod.

From the light appeared———

 

"O-Oneechan...?"

 

How did you know I'm here?

That's what I was mainly confused about.

Hearing my voice, Shion-san turned around.

 

"———oh Lord."

Shion-san murmured something.

Then she came towards me with long steps.

 

BAM!

 

That was quite a magnificent sound.

I've been slapped.

 

"Ah———"

 

Rather than hurt, everything went pure white.

And while I was dumbfounded, Shion-san checked my body here and there.

 

"Arms, legs, all there..."

 

She finished her check and grabbed me by the collar.

My legs lifted off the ground.

Can't, breathe...!

 

"——Does it hurt? Good. That's nothing to the pain you caused Pops and Mom."

"..."

 

———I couldn't say anything.

 

"Just how selfishly have you lived so far!? Were you some caged bird? Or some Miss Happy-go-lucky? Hm!?"

Shion-san's words, hurt.

She choked me to the limit, and when I thought I'd suffocate, she shoved me against the wall.

My legs couldn't muster any strength and I sank to the floor right there.

 

"——*cough*! Hah, ha"

 

I lowered my eyes as I got my breathing under control.

Scared, I couldn't look up at Shion-san.

My body was trembling.

This is scarier than facing the bear.

Now, I should rather say the kind of fear is different.

Fighting with monsters feels like a game.

——Confronting people, that's real.

 

"I... I..."

 

Shion-san grabbed my trembling shoulders once more.

 

"—— but you know... the fact that you idiot are safe... I'm really so glad. Stupid Alice."

 

And just like that, she pulled me in and closed me into her arms.

Shion-san was...

 

"So glad... I'm really..."

She was crying.

Ahh... I see.

This, this is no game, and I'm not alone either.

 

"I'm sorry..."

 

I've done something stupid.

 

"I'm really... sorry..."

"Really now, stupid!"

 

Voom, she hit her forehead against mine.

Ouch.

Shion-san was a crying mess.

 

"... can I... still... call you Onee-chan?"

 

That earned me another headbutt.

Ouch.

 

"Stupid... no matter how stupid you are, you cannot cut family ties that easily, you stupid Alice!"

"Haha... you're calling me stupid too much."

"I'm not doing it enough, stupid."

 

Shion-san hugged me once more with all her strength.

The sensation was so incredibly warm. I hugged her back.

Ah. Interacting with people, facing people...

It's so scary...

...and it makes you so happy.

I really was an idiot, I get that now.

And from the bottom of my heart, I'm grateful.

 

"... thank you, Onee-chan."

 

I wanted to convey the words from noon once more, coming from the heart this time.

26 thoughts on “Chapter 8

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  1. Anonymous

    It probably is quite confusing for Alice to call Shion "Onee-chan" because actually he is older than her, right?
    Maybe Kadi is also a imou-con like Krytyk

    Reply
    1. KadiKadi Post author

      I like the "Nii-san" types, the others tend to annoy me greatly. Ahh, Sakuya.... <3<3<3

      Reply
  2. Aereus

    Nice job so far Kadi. Translation is a little bit stiff I would say, but perfectly readable. Wish fulfillment to be sure, but at the same time the author does a good job of conveying how terrifying certain aspects of suddenly having to actually fight and kill things would be for the average person.

    My rule of thumb for translating is to identify what the core meaning or idea being conveyed is in the sentence. Then if the structure or wording needs to be bent to make it flow well in English, you just make sure that core meaning is intact. Translation isn't transliteration -- following it exactly word for word from the Japanese isn't the goal -- conveying the same idea or intent in the second language is. If you wanted someone to go over your scripts in the future and offer wording suggestions, I'd be happy to look them over.

    And I know all too well how challenging it can be to get the speech styles and dialects across well in English. There are a number of different ones in Boku Girl that have been both fun and frustrating to bring across. But if you can and do bring them across, it makes the script just that much better. Otherwise using a neutral style for everyone ends up losing part of the atmosphere to the story.

    Reply
    1. KadiKadi Post author

      That's what I'm talking about! Aiming for natural, flowing English has always been my philosophy when (text) editing. But when translating, I often cannot let go of the Japanese enough... yet. And when I do, I easily go too far. Furthermore, the later chapters aren't edited, particularly not for style/flow.
      I'm stuck between the wish to offer new content (so many hilarious chapters ahead), laziness to go back to what I've already worked on and laziness to do anything at all... I think I'll go back and edit once the first arc is done.
      Until then, I'm grateful for all help and pointers that help me naturalize my translations. I may be stubborn and not always agree, but I'm sure I can and will learn a lot.

      (I wonder how hard I would edit my own translations if I could see them "from a blank state", or what I would think of them in the first place)

      Reply
    2. Jacob

      I've always thought transliteration was like romaji where it just puts the phonetics in roman characters.

      Reply
      1. krytykkrytyk

        Transliteration doesn't have anything to do with phonetics. "Transliteration is not concerned with representing the sounds of the original, only the characters, ideally accurately and unambiguously." as wikipedia says.

        Reply
  3. Phalkor

    Quirky speech is hard to translate. I've seen it translated as a different kind of accent and also having it written in as an intro with the name of the accent and then written in a normal way. I think I prefer the 2nd option but then again I don't know anything about Japanese accents.

    Reply
    1. KadiKadi Post author

      Well... there are different kinds of quirks.

      1) Accents. Most famously, kansai accent. Can be done through making it an accent in English, but that often ends up mehhh if the translator has little clue of what he's doing. Like me, when it comes to accents.
      2) Cat speech. Japanese adds "nya" at the end and often changes "na"s to "nya"s. Doesn't work naturally in English. You don't just add stuff at the end of English sentences, and replacing syllables isn't as easy, either, seeing English syllables are a lot more complex. In Japanese? Think of Bakemonogatari Season 1, the cat and the tongue twister. Yeah... (actually, I should look that up myself)
      3) Old speech(?)... females using "warawa" for "I", many "no" at the end of sentences, sometimes even "no ja". An example in this direction would be Campione's Athena, though I don't remember how much "no"/"no ja" she uses. Using old English... would also either end up half-assed or a pain, probably.
      4) "Noble speech". Young ladies starting up "wa"-storms, or "desu wa" even. PAIN.
      5) Just super-polite. Can be done decently by omitting contractions (no "don't"s and "isn't"s). Yay? It's even tried and tested!

      Not saying all of them will come up in Nekama, but I'd like to make those that do recognizable. Not necessarily what Japanese quirk they stem from, but I'd like people to notice which character is speaking from the speech itself as often as possible. To that end, I see adding a TL note and going on normally as the cheap way out. Safe, since it avoids possible linguistic train wrecks, but cheap.

      If any of you guys have any ideas how to do any of these quirks in a simple, yet recognizable way in English (like my idea for 5)), out with it! Whether I end up using them or not, I'm grateful (aka desperate) for all suggestions!

      Reply
      1. krytykkrytyk

        3. 'no ja' is less "ancient speech" and more like "old", it's something old people from early and middle showa era are often using. Of course, it DOES appear ancient speech as well.

        4/5. Indeed, all you can do is make it as formal as possible :| (Says so as he translates Usagi's "watakushi desuwa"...).

        Reply
  4. Kuro

    ^^^ For some reason part of it was deleted... -_-

    “――Does it hurt? Good. That’s nothing to the pain you caused Pops and Mom.” --> “――Does it hurt? Good. That’s nothing compared the pain you caused Pops and Mom.”

    Reply
    1. KadiKadi Post author

      Thank you for the input, but I'll dare say some of it was intentional. People don't speak perfectly in the first place and Shion is in emotional turmoil. Thus it doesn't connect well. Maybe I could break it more skillfully, but... mehhh. Later. It's still good that you look out for it and question me over it. It might not be intentional after all.

      Reply
      1. Kuro

        Unfortunately, that's one of the most problematic things about writing... Human speech and action doesn't always have a real reason or proper grammar, with the dilution of accents into speech as well we trade good writing for more realistic writing... Well, personally even though its less realistic, I prefer the smoother writing that rolls off the tongue nicer, but its your choice. :) You're the translator, and I respect that.

        Reply
        1. KadiKadi Post author

          I'll try to find a good balance. Neither robotic nor unreadable.

          Oh my god, I just thought about the characters with... quirky speech waiting for me later. I have NO idea how to deal with them yet.

          Reply
  5. Kuro

    EDITS:

    "Just how selfishly have lived so far!? " --> "Just how selfishly have you lived so far!?"

    “―― but you know… the fact that you idiot are safe… I’m really so glad. Stupid Alice.” --> “―― but… knowing that an idiot like you is safe… makes me really glad... Stupid Alice.”

    “So glad… I’m really…” --> "I'm really... truly glad..."

    Srry but 'really so glad' doesn't click with me very well... but its ur call. Keep up the good work :D

    Reply
  6. Nezumi

    ''Then there is the amount of many I can store in my body, doesn’t it change a lot with level and Attributes?''
    I think you mean
    "the amount of mana"

    Reply
  7. NP-3228

    O man he's too into his role. At this rate, he'll evolve from a G.I.R.L. to a real girl.

    Reply
  8. SpiffyRaptor

    Ah Alice is growing stronger soon she will no longer need her stun gun stick, thanks for the translations I was looking for something to read until OSO vol 3 is released and you have filled that void perfectly

    Reply

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