Week 3: 薬屋のひとりごと

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薬屋のひとりごと Home Thread

Week 3


Previous Part: Week 2
Next Part: Week 4


Week Start Date Chapter Names Page Count
Week 3 Mar 12th 「毒味役」「枝」「媚薬」 24

Discussion Rules

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, please mention the chapter and page number. Also mention what version of the book you are reading.
  • Don’t be afraid of asking questions, even if they seem embarrassing at first. All of us are here to learn.
  • To you lurkers out there: Join the conversation, it’s fun! :durtle:


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Proper Noun Readings

Name Reading Notes Proof
猫猫 まおまお Main character furigana
玉葉 ギョクヨウ One of the four (main) wives (title: 貴妃) furigana
梨花 リファ One of the four (main) wives (title: 賢妃) furigana
小蘭 シャオラン furigana
鈴麗 リンリ Daughter of 玉葉; nickname: 小鈴 (シャオリン) furigana
壬氏 ジンシ 天女を思わせる宦官 furigana
紅娘 ホンニャン head of the servants of 玉葉 furigana
芙蓉 フヨウ 中級妃 furigana
高順 ガオシュン aid of 壬氏 furigana

I actually finished the weekly reading while trying to check for new names :upside_down_face:

Chapter 6+


Uhu. Poor emperor, after a hard day of work, he still has to work at night. He definitely needs that.

Chapter 8


:rofl: “also, just enjoy your night with whoever”.


Actually, I was talking about the setting with a friend, and we were wondering how long the 東宮 (and other sons of the emperor) remains in the 後宮. At the very least, the 東宮 (as in the place) is part of the 後宮… so once he reaches puberty, the 東宮 (as in the person) is one horny boi surrounded by 2000 sex-deprived women… I feel like something bad is bound to happen.


Still working on this week but the first few questions for the first chapter are already in

Questions Part1
  • I understood correctly that the pain she felt while holding the “water holding thingy” 水差し (no idea what it is in english XD) was probably because it was holding extremely hot water? I’m kinda suprised because I would expect it to steam then…
  • Beginning of chapter 6: 同時に聡明でかつ用心深いのだ。What is that katsu?
  • Middle of chapter 6: 遅行性 is a 変換ミス for 遅効性 right?
  • 三十路を前にした, I looked it up and found different things for 三十路. Am I correct in assuming in this case it means she’s 29? Or does it mean she passed 30?
    *猫猫は紅娘が言わんとしている… This 言わん is the same as 言わない right (from 言わぬ)? the thing I found though says it means the same as 言おうとしている which seems strange. There are other set phrases wihch use this old わん form it seems. Just checking if I understood the formation and meaning correctly. Ichidan verbs go 食べん right?
    *「ええ、宮官長のところで手続きしておくから。それと」She’s saying they are processing it at the head ladys place right? what does the それと mean?
  • (飴の使い方がうまいことで)I don’t get this sentence. Is it some kind of set phrase? It is better “to eat the drops” kinda thing?

Many many questions this time around. Though I could follow the story for this chapter pretty well I feel like. Nothing much happend.
紅娘’s name always trips me up though. I subvocalise all the stuff I read and her name just doesn’t flow at all for me…

EDIT: I’m currently reading and forgot to mention it last time but the words written with perfectly understandable Kanji who have a modern world katakana word next to them tick me off for some reason. They totally break my immerson. I’m talking about 長椅子カウチ etc.

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"Quick chap 6 answers

No, she was hit on the wrist.


That’s also what I think (although I didn’t even notice while reading :joy: )

She is before 30. She could be 29, but that’s a bit too specific.

Yes, it means “what she is implying”. I mostly see the expression 言わんばかり though.
I never thought about the grammatical construction itself, but 言わぬ makes sense I guess. I’ll have a look too later.

That she will do the procedure (e.g. submit document). それと is just to change the subject.
(but of course, it’s not a real subject change, here :stuck_out_tongue: )

It’s not a set phrase per se, but 飴と鞭 are the too way of leading people. In French (my native language) we use “the carrot and the stick”. The head servant is very good with the 飴 side.


I didn’t notice that one (I just tend to ignore furigana except for names) but there’s one that I noticed and really annoyed me. I don’t remember that happening past volume 1, though.
Edit: just checked, and that one seems to just go on forever. The word doesn’t appear in volume 10 and had no furigana in 11, though.


卓子テーブル by any chance? This one is driving me nuts too XD. I think I saw 3-4 of these up to now…

By what? Honnyan? That sounds strange since the whole thing was a stage to deduct the outgoing payment. Honnyan could have just thrown the thing down herself then no? Why hit her? I suspect you interpolated that from the 衝撃で right?

Thanks for the other cleanups. Clears up basically all the questions I had. Never came across 且 before. Interesting…


Well, 卓 (with the same furigana) appears all over the place, including volume 11.

Yes. A slap on the wrist, I guess?
It is just a way to stage 猫猫 doing something bad, so that both her “family” would stop receiving money and 猫猫 could get fired in 2 years (without having to do something incompetent herself), all that without having to say anything out loud. Still not super straightforward.

Actually not, I thought that was the other meaning (like, more than the pain, the shock of being hit is what made her drop the thing). But I can see how the actual shock would make more sense :thinking: I kinda wish I still had access to the manga so I could check what the artist did.
Edit: actually, that would not help in this case. I was googling 衝撃で, and all examples I can find are about the physical shock, so I guess that’s as you say, being hit is what made her drop the pitcher.


Have one question for th 7th chapter atm:

How do I have to interpret 異民族 is it a “fraction” in the sense of another family still belonging to the same country, or does it mean people from another country? I’m leaning in direction of the second here because the village that got eradicated was at the border etc. But my understanding of that chapter wasn’t as strong so I thought I better ask.

I will finish this weeks reading on sunday the latest. After that the hard part starts with having to work while keeping up with the reading XD.

Ch 7

It’s a thing in Chinese inspired settings (and actual history). Those are just people from a different ethnic group. They may or may not belong to a different country. In this case, though, the village belongs to the same country as the protagonists. (But the 異民族 they are talking about are from a different place)

There won’t be that much of an increase in speed. If you can manage this amount over a weekend, you should be fine most of the time.


Yes I got that the village belongs to the country (though one couldn’t say historicaly speaking that they didn’t have ties with the 異民族 at one point if I read that correctly). I wasn’t too sure though if the scheming enemy was in country or out of country though. If I understood you correctly it isn’t exactly specified. Kinda unsatisfactory somehow but thank you none the less XD.

EDIT: your edit cleared it up in more detail thanks ^^

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I was checking the usage of that word in the other volumes, and it seems to always refer to groups that aren’t under the control of the country (so even if they are in controlled territory, they wouldn’t be subjects themselves, I guess). However, it is at times used in contrast with “other countries”, so I guess it refers more to tribes, in contrast with more established societies? I have to admit I know nothing about Chinese history and related terms :sweat_smile:

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Manga Panel

Judging from the manga it looks more like 猫猫 never really held the 水差しand while dropping it hit her hand.

I finished the book yesterday but I will try and reread the weekly chapters! Also got the next couple of volumes but will probably take a small break from reading the next volume and read something easy for a change!


Ch 6: どうせ欲の皮の突っ張った官が、利潤を得るために作ったものだろう。

I wanted to ask what 「欲の皮」is but I figured it out while writing 「欲の皮が突っ張った」is a set phrase meaning to be greedy [1]

ch 8: 性別さえ違えば傾国になるといわれた壬氏であるが、本人がその気であれば皇帝を前にしても性別など意味がないものと、うれしくもない褒め言葉をもらう。

This sentence is troubleing me a bit. Is it basically saying that he was complimented for being so beautiful that even though he is not a woman, that if he were so inclined he could become a 傾国 to the emperor?


He has been told (often) that, if only he was the opposite gender, he could be a 傾国, and this time he has been “complimented” that his gender doesn’t even matter (he can be a 傾国 regardless of his gender if he feels like it :joy:), that’s not really a compliment he feels happy about.
So, yes, what you said.

That doesn’t really match the text (while would she feel pain in her wrist in that case), but that’s close enough.


Puhh the last chapter is hard. Really hard with all the strange sentence constructions and tons of super obscure vocabulary which sometimes even 3 dictionaries couldn’t help much with… Still the last little part after we switch back to Maumaus view left.

Comprehension babbling
  • So he knew there was an aphrodisiac mixed into the manjuu but he tried to let maumau eat it (taste test) either way right?
  • The sentence after her “yeah probably some visitor tonight” sentence expresses that Maumau is surprised by his reaction (not saying anything) after her plain remark?
  • When she thinks about who would it be he received that “gift” from is she implying theres a chance he was testing her by putting it in himself?
  • Though since he seems to need to lock his room and doesn’t want to go on nightduty his life also doesn’t seem to be too easy with some of these crazies around him XD. So maybe he really received it from some “fan” and wasn’t sure there was something in there.
  • Okay so more info on Jinshi. He is basically the selector for the kisaki for his majesty.
  • I do hate it when we switch to him. Always have more trouble reading his parts. 正四品 I’m correct in assuming that’s something like a 4 rating in some kind of rating system for the kisaki? Pretty bad you can be gifted down even with such a 中級 rating.

Low comprehension probably leads to many stupid questions. So excuse my barage of questions this time…

I’m not too sure it is necessarily bad from their point of view. Isn’t producing an heir the whole purpose of this place. And since he is the 東宮 I feel it shouldn’t be that big of a deal. Maybe the favs of the current emperor are off limits though :thinking:
The book itself stated earlier that the current 皇帝 also had an heir before ascending to the throne…

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Ch 8

It’s not made explicit, but I guess he suspected it.

No, he is surprised by her reaction (he expected more of a reaction)

No. She is just wondering about the person.

He did receive it from a “fan” (the 武官 one). While he was probably not sure, I assume it’s not the first time.

That’s not his official role, though.

Yes. That’s a standard thing in 後宮-based settings (and real history). 妃 are grouped by level, with 正一品 being the 4 main 妃, including 玉葉 and 梨花.

It is from the point of view of succession. Another son from the current emperor is lower than a son of the next emperor in the line of succession. (Even if the correct father is identified, it could be a huge political problem, as it would give a lot of power to the family of the mother)

Yes, but (I guess this is technically a spoiler at this point of the story, but it doesn’t really matter )not with a woman from the 後宮.


I have to jump in here again. I read the part where he receives a 点心 from 武官 but I read it as happening after the scene with Maumau. What makes you say It was from him (武官 can’t be female right?)

But there was a sentence in there implying if he doesn’t do well in that role he would be sacked if I understood correctly ^^

Thank you as always for talking through the story with me :bowing_man:


This sentence (or part of sentence), which you already found:


That’s all for the day (今日は…), so it doesn’t have to be after meeting 猫猫.
And 武官 are all men, yes.

Which sentence? I had a quick look but couldn’t find anything.

Thank you for posting. It’s fun :durtle_hello:


That doesn’t bode well for my understanding XD.
What are these sentences describing?
EDIT: Ah the 切り捨てる is for the kisaki who cannot 子を産む?
Really struggeling with the causative here for some reason…

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Ah! Yes. The 妃 are the ones being “sacked”, not 壬氏.

Okay so done with this week. Nothing much to report on the last part. Comparatively this was totally easy again. Maybe I was just having a crap day yesterday? (probably not)

Totally can feel with Maumau. I was feeling probably the same when I first stumbled in my first BookOff in japan. There are just some magical places XD.
Anyways time to drink some ココア and relax before tackling next weeks part ^^

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