Wrapped up my reading of the two chapters, and since I was there, I added a bunch of vocab. Some of it is totally unnecessary, I’m sure (common words and the like), but I figure without furigana, better to over-add words than under-add.
Interesting. Am I to take it that this means some of the “soot” is alive? First hint of something quite strange that I’ve seen (well, aside from the whole concept of shadow people and living dolls and such). Curious to see where this goes! I was sort of on the fence about joining initially, but I am definitely intrigued and wanting to continue now!
Although I was planning on participating from the start, I’m definitely pleasantly surprised at how much I’m enjoying this, it’s very fun. I actually reached chapter 8 without realising it XD so I’m going back through to double down on all the vocab and grammar.
Really enjoying this so far! I like the characters and I like the “slice of life with an ominous mystery in the backdrop” sort of vibe. Certainly exceeding expectations (not that they were low, just didn’t really know what to expect).
I originally read page 33 すす取りの間を挟んで as “In between times that I’m cleaning soot [I go down this staircase and to my room].” Is that possible? Was there a soot cleaning room in a previous chapter that I forgot about already?
I was torn there too. I do think 挟む is more for physical states (I’ve seen 合間 or 合間合間 used for “between times” ), so that was reasoning number 1 behind reading it as a room and not an interval of time. . The second being the pictures seeming to indicate passing through or by a room as she speaks, the 3rd being the timing. It just seemed weird to me that when she was going to bed, she would specify that it was between the times of cleaning soot, instead of it saying when she goes to sleep. This could be easily explained by her somewhat odd point of reference for life, being a shut-in living doll, though, so it’s the weakest reasoning. And my final reasoning was the particle used: You don’t usually use を with time words. I would expect に if 間 were to mean time (ala 間に合う).
I very well could be wrong, though, and I’m curious how a native would read it, so I’ll send this bit to my tutor and see what she thinks. When she gets back to me, I’ll post her thoughts here!
So, she seems to think it’s a room, and rather than the stairs necessarily being across from the soot removal room, it seems like the idea is more that the soot removal room is between two places. In this case, Kate’s room is the most likely candidate for one of those places, and the stairs are the other. So, you pass through the soot removal room from Kate’s room to get to the stairs, and then down the stairs is エミリコ’s room. (Though, from this description, the stairs would still be across from the soot room, if you are crossing through it to get to them, I would think, so not too far off base with that description).
Well, these last two chapters (especially chapter three) were rather chilling…!Emiriko’s room has no windows to let light in, she basically eats a lump of bread for dinner (and breakfast), and then sleeps in a box with breathing holes, and her only joy in life is cleaning for Keito … But at the same time her upbeat, sunny attitude makes it all kind of seem like no big deal. It’s a very uneasy feeling … which I’m very much enjoying.
@MrGeneric Thanks! I understood 挟む to mean “sandwich between”, so your tutor’s response makes sense to me.
I could be mistaken, but I’ve just been reading it as け. いえ doesn’t work because that would be the building, I doubt if it’s か because it’s not really an occupation, and if they were going with the unorthodox ハウス, it would typically have the furigana to indicate that.