I owe all of you so much more....but this should do for a start....
For your consideration....
間の楔 (Ai No Kusabi— The Wedge Between)
By Rieko Yoshihara
Vol. 6- Chara Edition
Pgs. 293-295Translator's Note:
Naturally, I have to begin with a disclaimer of sorts.
I did this fan translation out of love for this great work (as if you all couldn't guess). Therefore I can't vouch for its correctness or accuracy. Please correct me if you spot errors here. It's a learning process and this translation is not only a show of fan love but also it's a learning exercise.
What I attempted to do (as well as in all my future translations, and as a contract I make to other fans of this work) was, to the best of my ability, and as fledgling as it is, to maintain the "soul" of Yoshihara-sensei's gorgeous original writing.
This is an example of the tanbi (Japanese for aesthetic) style, as interpreted by this translator. My feeling is that if you try to change, leave out or "rewrite" another writer's words, especially when you are translating them, it's almost too easy to change the passage's meaning, or worse, imply something else, thus something gets lost; it can be done when you don't realizing it. I wanted to do my best to ensure that it wasn't my language that was presented, but only an English interpretation of the Japanese text giving my very early learning of Japanese, with an attempt to preserve the artistry of the original text.
Katze is one of my favorite characters in the novel, and I'll get into my many reasons why later. This was, for me, my favorite of Katze's passages and his words to Guy at the ruins of Dana Bahn, as he's remembering them, resonate with me even more now than they did when I finished reading the novels for the first time. It was an ending so bittersweet that it still, even as I type these words, bring about tears.
Dana Bahn---completely destroyed;
It's miserable corpse lay exposed upon the ground.
Alone, Guy gazed at the ruins without even a slight tremor.
Desolate was the huge gravestone.
Below this, Riki and Iason slept.
For all eternity, the truth of the incident would not be disclosed; however it would be limited to just a few...
"Ainokusabi--- Do you know what that means? Well, it's an obsolete expresssion, yet hardly a fossil; but it refers to something that ties two separate things securely together."
Unexpectedly, Guy recalled Katze's words to him...
Humans, in that way cannot live without the support of someone else. And referred to as a "pairing partner" was that what Riki wanted to say?
In the end, at the last moment, Riki entrusted Guy to Katze and chose Iason--- thereby sacrificing himself.
"Well, I don't know the reason, but it might be that what attracted them was pitting their pride against each other. I guess their encounter was predestined that way. Perhaps..."
As far as Guy was concerned, that was how he felt meeting Riki.
Meeting Riki filled Guy with joy.
Guy had been kept alive because of Riki.
That is, Guy believed that meeting Riki was inevitable luck rather than mere chance.
However----Katze's words negated that.
A Tanagura Blondy and a slum mongrel.
If that's the case, one could say that, Iason was likened to a custom-made black box with only one key to unseal it---and it was Riki.
For this reason, master and pet, I guess they couldn't have been tied together except by only that sort of distorted bond.
Katze told Guy matter-of-factly.
"This might be a reluctant matter to you, but there is also a love that cannot be fulfilled but in that form. It may be that such things are like that."
(Form of love....?)
Guy chewed as if on a bitter object, and he felt a murmur within his chest. At that moment, his left arm that should not have been there began throbbing painfully; he then gripped the empty sleeve.
"Between the people left behind, even though they possess similar pain, have nothing further to weep. Now, you and I are the only two people who could not only talk about the manner of their deaths but also their way of life."
(Matter of death and way of life.)
"Clenching...That fellow with a missing left arm... Oh! Seems like I have plenty of time to think about it! Also."
That name he clenched within his heart.
Putting the feelings of everything...
In that moment...
A wind whirled up the dust by the man, together with a gust of wind blew through and swept back Guy's long hair...