"Flesh&Blood" Vol. 6 - Pirate Series Reading Club 🏴‍☠ ⛵

No problem! No rush at all; I’ve been taking it a bit slow myself, trying to juggle several books. It helps me if you’re not zooming through as well. :joy:

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Yes, you are right; I read it again and I think I confused things.
I was referring to this phrase:

まだ正体を知らなかった頃のカイトに対する反発も、否応なく彼に惹かれていく自分に対する抵抗だったのかもしれない。
which is talking about the fact that Nigel was at first so confrontative regarding Kaito, and that this was probably a result of Jeoffrey being drawn to Kaito, and so Nigel was actually opposing Jeoffrey.

I think at first I thought that Kaito was drawn to Nigel and opposing Jeoffrey, but that’s apparently not written here. So confusing with all these 彼 and 自分 and such, sometimes it’s hard to get these references right :sweat_smile:

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Chapter 2 thoughts

Well, this starts off with a reminder of how utterly filthy living in a city was back in this era; people throwing out the nights piss and poo out their window onto the street gutter is something I’ve seen described in history books before. I always found it incredibly disturbing and disgusting. :skull:

Like, was there really no better way to go about this? Not that the hygenic conditions onboard a ship like Gloria was much better. T_T

Anyway, Kaito, Nigel and Jeoffrey make their way to Whitehall Palace.

Turns out Queen Elizabeth is interested in in hearing Kaito’s prediction for the future of how the situation in France will turn out, which gives Kaito pause since he can’t remember much about the history of France (blaming his teacher’s English centric approach to teaching. XD). Well, after being clued in by Nigels summary of the ongoing situation in France, Kaito ends up being able to deliver the prediction. :relieved:

Finally it looks like Kaito, Jeoffrey and Nigel can return to Gloria, now with new orders of transporting the messenger from the French court (?) back to France. But, first they can go back to Playmouth!

[/spoiler]

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Wait, hold on. If that’s the case then I severely misread that line. (All ch. 5 spoilers)

まだ正体を知らなかった頃のカイト = when (he/Nigel) still didn’t know/understand Kaito’s true character
に対する反発 = (his/Nigel) resistance/antagonism to the above Kaito
否応なく彼に惹かれていく自分 = he/Nigel unwillingly attracted to him (Kaito)
に対する抵抗だったのかもしれない = was probably (his/Nigel’s) pushback against (the unwilling attraction)

(Wow, that sounds awful in English when you try to break it down like above.)

Is the subject in there really flipping to someone else partway through? There’s no subject in the first clause, so I took 自分 to be Nigel and 彼 to be Kaito. :frowning:

Edit: I just realized I should probably have written down in intelligible English what I thought I read. I read the sentence as saying that Nigel was confrontational against Kaito because Nigel could already feel being attracted to Kaito; I didn’t read any Jeoffrey into it.

(Ch. 2 spoilers)

I thought they weren’t going back to Plymouth first since the trio was kind of put off by Elizabeth’s request; i.e. “take the ambassador back” “but we were going home to Plymouth…” “no, take him to France”.

Maybe I’ve been getting too relaxed with F&B, too familiar with it. We’re not even at court/Vicente and I’m doubting what I’m reading. @.@

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Ok looking at your interpretation, I think you are right with that! I took 自分 to refer to Jeoffrey, but he would probably say 俺 in his own thoughts… So Nigel was pushing back against the attraction he felt towards Kaito. And it even makes the most sense of all versions :exploding_head: :rofl:
Thanks for setting this straight!

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By the way right now all these bits and pieces from Flesh & Blood seem to more and more mix with reality for me :sweat_smile:

As it happens, my daughter has spent a few months in Plymouth as a school exchange a few years ago, and recently I mentioned to her that the book is partly set in Plymouth and that there is this hill in the city, and she was like “The Hoe!” :exploding_head: Also, she gave a map of the city that she was given back then!

The other day my son told me about his recent holiday in southern England, and that he went to Lizard Point, and I was like “Yeah, I know that place” :grin:

And finally, there is a “public bookshelf” quite close to where I live, so when I walk past it, I usually check to see if there is anything interesting in it, and recently I found this chonker of 1300+ pages:

in which - of course - one can find

a royal wallpaper ;-)

This is mostly earlier than what we learned about so far - you can see Mary Stuart and Elizabeth I. at the very bottom. Not sure whether I will tackle this any time soon though :sweat_smile:

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both

^>^

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Believe it or not I still don’t know if they’re stopping by Plymouth yet; we’re still on the boat Berserk

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I haven’t even gotten there! :joy: I’m gonna start chapter 3…later!

(my comment was mostly how I read the what we were told of their new upcoming mission. :slight_smile: )

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Got the chance to start volume 6 last week but not the chance to write this until now :sweat_smile:

Chapter 1

This volume starts out much calmer than the last one. It was sweet to see everyone prepared presents for Kaito, if there’s one good thing he got out of this visit to London it’s some new connections there. Then since they need to go meet the Queen one more time before they go, Jeoffrey and Kaito get some clothes shopping in and the mystery of Kaito’s hair staying red is solved when they go to get his hair redyed before their visit.

Chapter 2

This chapter hurt my brain a little, I know way too little about any of French history. Here Kaito realizes that maybe he does too when the Queen asks him to listen in on her conversation with an envoy from France and use his powers to tell her whether or not what he’s saying is the truth. Looks like before they can head back to Plymouth they’ll need to take a quick detour to France, and like I might need to go read some wikipedia pages about French history.

As a side effect of all my googling reading this series I’m starting to get random historical articles recommended to me :joy:

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I was really glad they finally addressed this. :joy: Was wondering how that was going to turn out.

A small update from me: the past week or so has been pretty hectic IRL-wise, so I’m a bit behind on all of my books. Still hanging in there; I’ll probably be a bit quiet again this week as I try to catch up with everything.

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I mentioned it in the home thread, but I’m aiming to finish this book this coming week, given that I’ve got the full week off work.

To start off strong, I finished chapter 6 today! I had actually read 1/3~1/2 of the chapter last time I picked up the book (up to where Kaito starts his flashback where he’s talking with Queen Elizabeth), so it wasn’t a ton of pages. A good way to jump back into things.

So some thoughts on the chapter; thank goodness I’ve been highlighting stuff as I’ve gone along:

  • Early on, Kaito mentions you can cross the English Channel via ホバークラフト. Hovercraft? Is this really a thing?
  • I really enjoyed Elizabeth’s section, talking about her position and identity as both ruler of England and a woman. I’m glad that 松岡先生 hasn’t left all the court stuff in the dust. As difficult as it could be to read some the stuff from that arc, and given how rushed that arc felt in general, I’m hopeful it’ll act as good groundwork for future character interactions.
  • Thomas Seymour, huh. Someone new to loop up! Did a bit of initial searching, and he was apparently “teasing” Elizabeth when she was as young as 14, which is, uh. Really brings a new angle to that relationship.
  • Typo alert? Or is this a valid spelling? Elizabeth mentions アテナイ, which from context has to be Athena. Looking it up, アテナイ is also the name of classic Athens the city. Which now makes me wonder how deep the research rabbit hole 松岡先生 went for looking into how mythological/classical figures were referred to in the late 1500s by an educated person. I assume the names they used would be closer to the originals than what we use today.
  • Another possible clue for if アルトヴィッチ is a real historical figure or not: his uncle is a French naval admiral.
  • Geoffrey (that felt weird to type) calls the French カエル野郎; is that insult historically accurate, I wonder? When did the French pick up the nickname “frogs”?
  • Nigel :cry:
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Hey, good to see you’re making some progress!
(I may have accidentally started vol 7 today, though :sweat_smile: but I want to finish another book as well this week, so let’s see how that goes)

Oh yes, absolutely! It was already possible in the 80‘s or so, and he‘s also accurate about the time it takes to cross the channel. You can imagine that it’s not exactly cheap though :sweat_smile:

Edit: Turns out that the company went out of business in 2005 :sweat_smile: Hoverspeed - Wikipedia

I added him to the Royal Diagram. He was married to Elizabeth‘s stepmother and as such got plenty exposure to Elizabeth, or the other way around. Pretty yuck, indeed.

Oh, that’s indeed a trail I have not yet followed up to. Let us know if you find something interesting.

:sweat_smile::+1:

Yes, I think so. You know that Elizabeth was never married, but she had lots of dudes who were interested in marrying her. The one dude who got the farthest was a French man (iirc he was called Henri, maybe the 2nd or the 3rd? don’t recall) and she called him „my frog“. But then he suddenly died. The End. (sorry for the answer from memory but I’m already in bed and waaay too lazy to fiddle around with Wikipedia on my phone :sweat_smile:)

Other than that, I agree with everything you said, and I also enjoyed the insights into court life from Elizabeth‘s point of view.

I’m a bit horrified at the possible prospect of going to the Spanish court and learning about that in the same depth :grin:

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F&B was, as far as I can tell, designed specifically to usurp other books. :thinking: At least you can say this to your colleagues/loved ones/giant stack of unread books: “Yeah, I spend all my free time reading a historical drama with gay pirates in Japanese. Yeah, I’m kind of an intellectual.”

I typed up all that while I was chatting with my sister on the phone, so I’ll be following up on research myself later as well, haha.

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Chapter 7 done! A good quick one from Geoffrey’s perspective. Not much I want to comment on here; been a while since we had an explosion of naval terminology, so I was a bit off my game.

Still trying to find anything specific on アルトヴィッチ; I keep thinking he must be a real person, but maybe he’s pure fiction? We get another hint for him here:

下がれ、薄汚い海賊ども! 私をモンコントゥールの勇者、シュヴァリエ•アルトヴィッチと知っての狼藉か!

シュヴァリエ is just the title of Chevalier, so モンコントゥールlooks like it would be the important information here. Searching it brings back Moncontour, a commune in France. I haven’t found any information on military engagements there yet; nothing where you could be declared a 勇者.

Edit: ah, all I have to do is say I can’t find anything and I find something: battle of Moncontour. I don’t see any name that immediately seems to match アルトヴィッチ yet, sadly.

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Volume 6 finished! I have thoughts/questions I want to post, but that’ll be for tomorrow. (And someone will need to reply to me for me to be able to post again…)

On a slightly different note, I did an initial round of pictures for our first 外伝 story, but I wasn’t all that satisfied with them, so I’ll have to try again. Will try to have that done and posted before Monday, hopefully.

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I‘m looking forward to them! :blush:

And for sharing the story, please don’t feel pressured! Share it only when you have the time, and there are no quality requirements, as long as 99% of the text is visible :+1:

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Okay, so chapters 8 and 9! Two chapters that really flowed well into each other, I thought.

Chapter 8:

Dang. So we and Kaito finally see some of the gruesomeness that is man-to-man combat. It’s probably a good thing Kaito seems to have dropped the sword for now; even if he were good with one, I don’t think he’d have the mental fortitude to last long anyhow. That dude with the axe in his head… Vivid stuff. I too was glad when Kaito looked back and he had wandered off. :\ Big character moment for Kaito to realize that he wasn’t really taking things as seriously as he could when he’d beg Geoffrey to let him watch more of their naval battles; I was feeling some secondhand embarrassment, even.

On the other hand, some good scenes with アルトヴィッチ. The man keeps surprising me. It’s a shame he’s likely a one-off character; maybe if we make it all the way to the French court he’ll show up again? I found it hilarious that Kaito got yet another offer of employment; at least in the highly unlikely situation he gets kicked off the Gloria he has options.

Took me a while to find what a 鎧通し was; looks like it’s a small knife. An “armor piercer” or “mail piercer”.

Chapter 9:

Phew boy. This was about 200% more traumatizing for Kaito than watching that dude with an axe in his head. I was a bit surprised this came so suddenly, but I figure the author also realized Kaito was going to need a shove to actually climb up the mast. Forget the gentle ribbing of your crewmates, let’s just set the ship on fire. I was pretty proud of Kaito for talking himself up the mast; I had a feeling he would get stuck up there, haha.

Question time! I don’t have a Japanese keyboard installed on this computer atm (roommate’s newly built one, so it’s on the to-do list), so I’ll have to type up the sentences separately. But after Kaito got knocked off of the perch the lookout sits on after cutting the burning rope (that’s where he was, right?), was the book saying it took Geoffrey a full hour to climb up and reach him? Or that it’d been an hour since Geoffrey (I’m sorry, I’m trying to train myself) said he’d be free and since Kaito started the initial climb?

I thought it was cute (and extremely physically impressive) how Geoffrey climbed back down with Kaito on his back. “Seriously, this is the only time I’ll do this.” :melting_face:

It took me way too long to figure out 火事場の馬鹿力 for [insert katakana here] was what Kaito was trying to say; my all-katakana game is weak, and I was expecting that to be a modernism instead of him speaking in Japanese. X(

Other than that, nice way to end the chapter. I thought it was a bit abrupt how we suddenly jumped to port to see アルトヴィッチ off, but I forgive 松岡先生 since we got a nice little scene where Geoffrey and Nigel are reminded how popular Kaito is. Can’t let down your guard, boys!

Let’s see; there were a few more grammar-related questions I wanted to ask, but I’ll need to get a Japanese keyboard installed beforehand, and I’ll be away for a few days due to holidays. Hopefully I remember to ask them before rushing off to volume 7.

Speaking of volume 7, might be next week when I start it? I’ve got holidays and family bonding time coming up, plus more much importantly the other book club chapters for this week I’ve yet to read. I will aim to start Monday! :muscle: Also I want it to be known that Vicente graces the cover of volume 8, so I’ll be walking into volume 7 with high expectations! Get your abduction game on! As long as it’s not too traumatic for Kaito.

(Chapter 8 spoilers)

He didn’t kill the cabin boy with the knife throw iirc. He hit the boy’s shoulder, who then dropped the grenade, which exploded and killed the boy.

I appreciate the kind words. ^o^ I think I’ve got a decent set of images to work with, but there’s going to be some sentences/lines near the edges of pages that’ll be a bit blurry; I’ll probably type up more in the actual thread, and I plan on fleshing out the post with fun information anyway. Hopefully on Saturday or Sunday, depending on when I get back home.

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Looks like I might get busy soon, with finals and the JLPT coming up, so I’m going to try and finish this volume before things ramp up too much.
Chapter 3

Ooh a Vicente chapter, he is, as seems to be usual for him, very fixated on Kaito. We also get some perspective on the treatment of Catholics during this time period in England through the lady who’s hiding him there. Through her, Vicente gets some information on Kaito’s current whereabouts. Seems like he’s not too far behind everyone, and with them setting out for France this might be a great chance for him to make his move.

Reading that article apparently Edward Arden was a relative of Mary Arden, Shakespeare’s mother, so my theory is maybe that was Shakespeare going by his mother’s maiden name

Chapter 4

Time to prepare to set sail again, this time to France with a new crew and a new boat. Kaito, while watching the ship get loaded, gets a chance to think a little bit about tackling his fear of heights. Then Shakespeare makes his reappearance, revealing that he’s done dealing with Vicente and also hinting at the remainder of his group before saying his farewells to Kaito.

I’m really curious about that too, the hinting about him gave me the vibe that he’ll probably be important at some point :eyes:

Chapter 5

This chapter starts with Geoffrey doing some introspection. I appreciate how self aware Geoffrey is about his feelings. I’m still really hoping that things between him and Nigel don’t blow up too much, hopefully with Vicente apparently around there won’t be any time for that. I felt so bad for poor Altovich (?) hopefully he doesn’t end up having to go back and forth between England and France anymore, but I laughed so hard when this guy was just unconscious on the ground with the three of them around him fighting over cpr. It’s a good thing he didn’t actually need it :joy:

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Ah, this is a good bit of trivia.

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