I ended up rereading from the first page to page 26 of かがみの孤城 today, which did actually help with my understanding of the events. There were a few details I’d missed before.
Was going to read right after I finished work, but I was exhausted and didn’t have the energy. And then afterwards I realised I felt a little lightheaded when I shook my head and my body was aching, so I think I’ve caught a cold : (. I’ve been feeling fatigued all evening (good thing not while I was at work).
I nearly fell asleep on the couch at 8pm, but then woke myself up for my online Japanese tutor session at 8:30pm. And right after finishing that, commenced to procrastinate for another 45 minutes, did WK reviews, then finally began reading
I initially wanted to read かがみの孤城 at a pace of 5-10 pages per day, but I have not managed that at all this week . For now, I’ll stop thinking about my pace and instead merely read for half an hour each day (or fifteen minutes, if I’m busier than usual).
This is coming from a place of minimal context so please take it with a grain of salt. I believe this is what’s happening, yes. I suppose she might have been tasked with taking
care of the son and so feels some responsibility, or maybe feels sorry for him and so apologizes on his behalf. Similar to how sometimes family members or Co workers/ superiors will apologize for someone else’s actions.
Under that pressure, faced with a crying and apologizing 清, the dad feels he has no choice but to forgive his son.
Finished chapter 16 & 17, and read a few pages of ch 18 (turns out it is super long).
Thoughts: So Maomao’s secret is that she does indeed use make-up after all. To paint freckles across her face, as a defense mechanism against… men unable of controlling themselves. And then there’s the garden party. I’m just going to mention whatever I remember: four wives, four themes (colors&gems), Jinshi being weird again (what did he want? I hope that’ll be resolved later), tiny princess baby was super cute. One of the “wives” being a whooping 14-year old??? wtf. And she actually belonged to the previous emperor who died 5 years ago… yeah, that’s effed up. And then we have Maomao scaring Li Hua’s maids with just one stare, that was hilarious. oh! and nameless Gyokuyou maids have names now: Guiwen and Airan / Ai Lan (?). Good call of author to not drop all their names in one go, I wouldn’t be able to tell them apart.
Well, I’ve finally done it: I finished VLR today! Like for real this time, alternate endings and all And hm I have many questions, but that’s what Zero Time Dilemma’s for huh?
Reading-wise though… things got a little weird at the end but honestly I think that was more to do with the content itself being confusing than anything with language; it’s reassuring when the characters are also like “what?” But stats: I finished VLR in just over 80 hours which is pretty wild actually. 999 took me around 100 and it’s supposedly shorter so yay improvement!! Thinking about how I’ve properly finished two full games in Japanese now is wild too, I never would’ve imagined that even like a few months ago feels pretty good!
obligatory VLR thoughts
Wow there was so much I found out so many things and yet I feel like I have more questions than ever, as is the spike chunsoft way.
My crackpot theory track record!! Incredible The main thing I’ve learned from Zero Escape is truly no theories are crackpot, anything can happen. But this: it sure was 淳平 huh! No wonder he knew so many things! I’m amazed he kept his cool about the whole 茜 thing as much as he did, though. Honestly the main doubts I had with him being 淳平 were that and the way he talked, but he’s just an old man lmao. I can definitely buy it being him though, like the スコッチ stuff really sounds like something he’d say
But シグマ… yeah I was definitely suspicious when they kept showing him like shoulders down and never any face ever but I wasn’t quite sure what direction we were going with it, and um it was us the whole time? We did this?? Well maybe not us but like… a different us? God Zero Escape It’s very good at making you go from “wow ゼロ is so evil and awful” to like “wait is… is ゼロ not actually the bad guy?” and those are complicated answers certainly but man. There’s so much lmao
And then the like “alternate ending” happened and I’m more confused than ever, there’s so much temporal nonsense that I’d be struggling to keep track of in English so it was an absolute trip ファイ was even more weird and cryptic than usual, 茜 is always like that, and I really don’t know whose consciousness was actually in カイル at that point. Like… シグマ is occupied, I suppose it could be 茜 or ファイ, but like… ahhhhh maybe I’ll find out in the next game or maybe I never will! I wouldn’t be shocked either way lmao
Another thing I’m very curious about: what happened to ニルス and サンタ huh? I suppose 八代 as well but like she doesn’t have a literal sibling here that just never brought her up. ニルス came up a bit in 四葉 and アルス backstory organization stuff but um a lot of time has passed since then, so like… did he just get left behind? And same with サンタ, last we knew he was on the run with 茜 but clearly some stuff happened, so… idk. It doesn’t feel like there can be any happy answers here really but we heard about everyone else to some extent so
Now it’s just a matter of time until I attempt the challenge of Zero Time Dilemma; probably a matter of like hours but hey exciting times!
So I couldn’t create posts yesterday or the day before that, not because I didn’t read, I actually finished this week’s chapter of 夜カフェ (just in time for next week), rather I just didn’t have the energy to write these up after the fact (read: I feel asleep at an inhumanely early time of almost midnight, oh the agony).
On the 20th, I barely got any reading done, this is my first (and hopefully my last) excuse day, I’ve read about 2 or 3 sentences, they were all terribly difficult to parse with my tired brain, so I didn’t continue.
To make it even, yesterday I’ve read 3 or so pages in a mere 1-1.5 hours, which I call a very good pace, at least for myself (I’m still 10x as fast even reading in English, which isn’t my native tongue, but baby steps). This left me a single page left to read today, which I’ve just finished doing.
I actually do feel a slight increase in my reading ability, sometimes I have actual sentences I can just read through and not even worry about needing to translate them, because I get the meaning of it.
I’m slightly worried, that I don’t actually understand the grammar, rather I get the meaning from context, but tbh, I don’t understand all grammar rules of English either and I can use them fairly well, so hopefully understanding what the text is saying will give me the foundation to instinctively know these,
This kind of thing is happening to me more and more where I’m pretty confident I get it but if I really break it down to small parts and scrutinize the sentence there are parts where I just don’t quite get why it’s phrased like that. I…guess it’s fine? Seems pretty natural to happen at times anyway. Hopefully we really can just get a feel for it in the very long term.
My head aches a bit, but today was better. I actually read 9000 characters! And I did manage to return later yesterday some to do more. I’m making a strong effort at getting through Summer Pockets a little faster, as much as I can manage. Have also read the first 4 sections (of 60) in スマホを落としただけなのに, and it’s still a pretty good simple side read.
I’m curious how this was translated, because this route existed in English, and there’s at least one riddle in the aforementioned treasure hunt that plays on presenting words in kana that are ambiguous homophones. Then again when it comes to kanji puzzles and the like I’ve regularly seen VN translators just sort of give up, present the Japanese word, and give whatever context we need in parenthesis. Can’t blame them, the only real way to work around that is to somehow write out your own totally different riddle. Come to think of it, apparently the Witcher 3 (not a visual novel, but a game with loads of writing) is held as an example of excellent translation into Japanese, and they did take what we’d consider a more traditional riddle at one point and turn it into a unique kanji puzzle.
There’s Kamome’s childhood gang. I think this different presentation style is pretty cute.
I feel like reading is getting more comfortable, my main issues today were just related to how Japanese casual conversation (well, as it’s written in a VN…) flows. I mostly followed things but there would be times with these super simple almost nothing statements that I couldn’t really work out what they were even referring to or meaning. Sometimes there’d be 3 or so responses back and forth like that, but they were always sort of jokey dead ends before the conversation went back to the important stuff so that’s… fine for now?
Spotted another N2 grammar today! つつある, “to be doing/in the process of doing.” Appears to hook onto -masu stems. It’s not that much of a stretch from つつ, which I already know.
The cool new word of the day, cause how could it not be, is 海賊船 (かいぞくせん), pirate ship. Yarr.
There were some short back and forth responses (probably similar to what you are describing) in a casual conversation in 地球星人 (地球星人 🌏 Book Club ・ In progress) and those were completely skipped in the official translation of the book, so it seems that even professional translators sometimes skip those.
Alright a little update because I have zero self control: I checked out Zero Time Dilemma! And yeah it’s a completely different experience than the first two so far It feels more like I’m watching an anime or something with subtitles than actually “reading,” so that’s a change. It does have a log though so I can stop and look things up whenever, and it lets you replay the voice acting so that’s nice! Plot-wise I’m definitely confused so far (as I’d been told I would be lmao, the nature of Zero Escape) but intrigued
But yeah thus far it feels closer to listening practice than anything which isn’t a problem, I need that I’ll probably try to pick up one of my novels again as well though, I think I’ll miss having like… narrative haha. Balance!
Ahhhh that’s hard Hmm I liked them both a lot (obviously); there are definitely things specifically done in 999 that I really enjoyed, but VLR’s generally more of an elaboration on the overall concept if that makes sense? Like they’d done it once so they knew what they were doing you know, could really go wild with it haha. So probably VLR overall, though I definitely have a fondness for a lot of things about 999.
(Ahhh but now I’m thinking about 999 again and I’m like “do I like it more???” idk there’s just different vibes, it’s kinda hard to compare somehow, they’re both great)
Chapter 54 of Yotsuba today. It was an unusually long chapter at 51 pages long, but it was so much fun to read. Yotsuba being afraid of the Tengu was adorable
Only one more chapter left in this volume now, so perhaps I’ll finish it tomorrow, but I usually try to focus on my Boookclub reads on Saturdays so I’m not sure yet.
I just finished すべてがｆになる kind of raced through to get to the resolution of the mystery and then the final epilogue type chapter took me a whole week (probably also something go do with having to work 10-14 hour days most of this week …and my new 13 sentinels addiction)
I enjoyed it! It was a page turner and a pretty comfy read difficulty wise. I was somewhat close to guessing some elements of the mystery but also way off with others hahaha. I have downloaded the next volume in the series but will probs switch back to 三毛猫 before starting it
I read the whole book, 14 pages, today. This one was very easy. Ryou, the policeman, biked all over town helping different children. A bunch of kids are screaming at him to help get a cat out of the tree. He climbs up, the cat jumps down, and Ryou falls out of the tree and breaks his leg, to the dismay of the officer who has to take his place while Ryou heals.
Also, her name sounds like リス, but instead of a squirrel, somehow she is more a cute hamster in my mind.
(edit) wait, you mean the actual princess baby. Well, never mind, then. I’m still keeping the picture though.
Thank you. My reaction too. Also, I don’t remember how I calculated that, but based on the former 皇后’s appearance, she must have gave birth to the current emperor when she was ~10. (猫猫 even commented on “good job giving birth at that age”).
That also told me how much 猫猫 is an unreliable narrator. So far, I always believed her when she said she is “plain looking”, but based on everyone’s reaction, that’s not the case.
Haha, yes. Well, mostly by making them realize she is, in fact, here.