I wasn’t sure on that part either, I just imagined some sort of lid on the test tube that he removed and then the steam comes out? But there was no mention of something like that either… But the “excluding” meaning definitely makes no sense.
But then why the ため? I do agree that ‘excluding’ makes no sense.
Also, I just finished the book! the first proper book I’ve ever read in Japanese I’m even being taken out for a congratulatory dinner!
Ok time for vague memories and haphazard guesswork…
I think the barrier is referring to the barrier which he used to stop time. Maybe this is right after he turned off the barrier. I don’t quite remember this part, but here is my guess. In that sense, what might be being said would be something like “Since the barrier was removed, the lavender smell, having become a white rising steam, surrounded kazuko”. Essentially, time starts again and the smell that should have been coming out of the tube resumes coming out.
Oooooh, you could be on to something there!
Oh, also, ため can mean “since” or “because” sometimes instead of “for the sake of” type usage if that helps any.
I actually realised that in the course of writing up my question originally, and then managed to forget again in the interval between posting that question and replying to Myria. So thanks for reminding me it’s a wonder I made it through the book
Haha, np, I still get confused by the secondary ため all the time. I am like お金を盗んだため、牢屋に閉じ込められたんだ? Why did he go to jail for the sake of stealing money??? That is such a weird plan…OH OH OH, that kind of ため. Whoops.
Right, I totally forgot that the time was standing still through the last few chapters… but that does make sense since he put away the radio thingy right before that barrier part.
Done! My first ever novel in Japanese. …That’s a really neat feeling When the club selected this book, I was pretty nervous about starting it. I had very little confidence that I’d actually be able to read it, but I’m so glad I gave it a shot, because those daunting pages full of text weren’t as scary as I thought, and it was really fun reading with everyone.
Gotta talk about this plot tho
Ch 22 and 23 spoilers
Ok…why is Kazuko suddenly so torn up about him leaving? Is it just me, or did this romance go from zero to sixty in 0.2 seconds? She was like…rudely rejecting his confession, and he told her all this stuff that would tend to make her distrust/dislike him, but then…suddenly, we want this person to stay, and/or come back and probably mess with our memories again? I am confused. Kazuko, I think you need some help.
Why did the fire near Goro’s place not happen the second time around? When I first read that, I thought that maybe it was because Kazuo started it (oooo:) but I have a feeling the key is this sentence from the second-to-last page, which I’m not sure I really understood:
Is this saying that when Kazuo returned to the future, he took these steps (ie, changing what happened via some unexplained means) to protect Kazuko? I thought he said you couldn’t change the past…but somehow, it changed after he left. That future magic sure is handy~
I was also nervous when we picked it ^^
Well… I think her initial rude reaction was a kind of panic. She wasn’t expecting it at all, and probably hadn’t really thought about the possibility that she liked him. So I can understand the turnaround. And I don’t think she does desperately love him or anything. But she does kind of like him, and if nothing else he’s been a solid friend for many years, in her mind. He’s about to be literally removed from her memories. I think I’d be pretty panicked and desperate too.
And yes, I have some questions about the specifics of that sentence myself, but it’s saying that he took care of things before he left. We can infer that he probably didn’t want them to both be killed in a car crash, which is otherwise what would have happened.
I suppose I would believe that. But I think that what gets me most is that he literally just told her that most of her memories of him are fake! Although, I guess she probably didn’t really have time to fully process that, either. I could see where, in her mind, the memories might still feel real, even though he told her outright they weren’t. There was a lot for her to process in this conversation xD
I finished the book, yay! \o/
So, I legit thought he’s gonna come back, or that would at least be hinted at, but nothing D:: It made me a bit sad.
AND! The whole book seems like “Oh Kazuko, you’re just a side-effect of that bigger thing”, and all the memories are gone too, leaving only that bittersweet hope that some すばらしい person will come.
I’m interested to see the animation now, and, more importantly, to listen to the soundtrack and see all of that (even if it’s quite different, that would be interesting too)
Yay, I finished too!
Sooo many thanks to all of you who discussed, asked or answered questions here! I did not ask that much myself, but everything here helped me a great deal. Also thanks to @seanblue for starting this book club in the first place and for meticulously setting up the discussion threads every week. I found this format of weekly threads super-helpful for being able to keep up with the discussions.
Finally, I have one question left:
(Near the end of chapter 22, probably on the 2nd-to-last page?)
What does とは mean here? Jisho says “indicates word or phrase being defined” - does that fit? Would it then mean something like “He does not want to think of this dull-witted girl” (with the passive adding a negative connotation to it)?
One of the usages of the particle は is to emphasize what it’s attached to. I think this is an example of that, and it would basically mean the same as ものわかり悪い女の子と思われたくない, but with an added は for emphasis. Something like she would at least rather not be thought of as a dull-witted girl (God forbid!).
Thank you! This makes so much more sense when you write it… I really need to get a better grip on the passive voice.
Is that related to the contrasting sense of は? As in, implying that there’s something else that she would want to be thought of as?
I’m not sure, really. All my knowledge related to this comes from experience and not actually studying the different functions of は, so I work with gut feeling.
Depending on how you look at it, I agree it can be seen as implying she would want to be thought of as something else, though.
A fellow member of the "gut feeling"派!!!
Exactly. She either has a problem, or is so afraid of losing her memory that she’d go as far as loving him to prevent that from happening. (Or, you know, maybe the writing isn’t that great).
Definitely just poor writing.
Right. It doesn’t change the fact that he is going to be in trouble for changing the past. Maybe they were supposed to die or something. If he is at that level of messing up with stuff anyway, he could have just left her the memories.
My first non-manga book completed! And on the same day my CDJapan order finally arrived, too. That was a ride…I actually liked these two chapters by themselves, but proceeded by everything that comes before it…yeah the emotion falls a bit flat.
But still, the earthquake was implied to have caused the fire by knocking a stove over…how’d he stop that?! Breaking and entering? All that talk about not changing the past and he prevents something a natural disaster causes…somehow. Maybe years of pretend existence added up and it was actually his presence there that caused Kazuko trouble even aside from the medicine.
I feel like a shop burning partially down and a major traffic accident that kills a bunch of people happening or not happening…miiiight have some affect on the future. Maybe we don’t hear from him again because the butterfly effect wiped him or the “medicine” from existence?
Overall though I think it was an excelent book for the club–relatively simple concepts, much repeated vocabulary, furigana, short chapters, and mostly simple non-academic sentences.