Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red/Youmu

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Article[edit]

Illustration by Tomoe Rokuwata.
第百十九季 葉月の五
Season 119, Hazuki issue #5 (est. 2004/09/14 ~ 2004/10/14)
真夏の昼の幽霊行列
Phantom Procession on a Midsummer Afternoon
昼間から堂々と飛ぶ幽霊に唖然
Dumbfounding daytime display
○月○日13時頃、幻想郷上空を幽霊の大群が飛ぶという怪事件が起きた。目撃した人も、昼間で無くてもあれほどの幽霊の大群に出くわしたことがない、と皆驚いていた。この話を聞き、幻想郷一の速度を誇る私の足で幽霊の大群を追った。 On X the Xth, a strange incident occurred at about 1:00 PM in which a mass of phantoms flew over Gensokyo. Those witness to the spectacle were all surprised, as they'd never seen such a huge number of phantoms before nightfall. Hearing the news, I chased them with the fastest feet in all of Gensokyo.
大群の幽霊は想像以上に多く、規則正しく一方を目指していた。幽霊の大群の中は余りにも寒く、外の夏の暑さとのギャップに異常さを感じざるを得ない。 The phantoms numbering beyond my initial expectation were all heading in the same direction as if marching. It was so cold inside the swarm of phantoms, and I couldn't help but feel how strange the gap was between that and the summer heat.
大群を率いていたのは、冥界の庭師、魂魄妖夢(半人半妖)。何故幽霊の大群を率いているのか、何処に向かっているのか、飛行中の本人に直截聞いてみた。 The one who led the group was Youmu Konpaku (Half-human, half-phantom), who works as a gardener in the Netherworld. I directly asked her in flight why and to where she was leading the huge number of phantoms.

「みんなをあの世へ連れ戻しに来ただけです。あの世とこの世の結界が薄くなっているので、ちょっとした弾みでみんなこっちに遊びに来ちゃうのですよ。昨日は幻想郷中で迎えの火を焚いたもんだから、勘違いした幽霊がこの世に下りていったり、便乗して遊びにいったりで幽霊達が大量に幻想郷に入っちゃったの。今日はみんな連れ戻しに来ただけよ」

"I just came here to take them back to the Netherworld. Since the boundary between this world and the Netherworld is thin at the moment, it takes very little effort for them to cross over to this world. Yesterday, there were fires for the ancestor-greeting ritual all over Gensokyo, and because of that, some of the phantoms got confused by the greeting and came into this world. Then, even more ghosts took advantage of the situation to come to Gensokyo and play around. That's why I'm taking them back home."

確かに昨日は盆の入りだった為、あちこちで迎え日も焚かれたのだろう。軽率な迎え火がご先祖ばかりでなく、暇している幽霊も呼んでしまうとは皮肉な物である。 As she said, it was the first day of Bon Festival yesterday, so humans made quite a few bonfires for the ritual. It's ironic that the thoughtless fires called not only their ancestors but also a bunch of bored phantoms.
また、庭師は幽霊について以下の様に注意を促した。 Also, the gardener gave the following warning about phantoms:

「幽霊を見つけても絶対に餌を与えたり買い慣らしたりしてはいけない。幽霊は一度なついてしまうとなかなか離れないのです。それに幽霊は非常に冷たいため、迂闊に触ると凍傷の危険もあります。もし幽霊を見かけたら見て見ぬふりをするか、白玉楼、もしくは巫女の方まで連絡をください」

"Even if you see any phantoms, don't feed or become attached to them. Once phantoms become friendly with you, they won't part so easily. Plus, phantoms are extremely cold, so you risk getting frostbite if you touch them. If you find any phantoms, please just ignore them or contact Hakugyokurou or a shrine maiden."

この出来事による、危険性や事件性は特に感じられなかったが、空に幽霊が浮かんでいるのを見ても刺激したり食したりしない方が無難である。 Though there was no sense of danger or foul play in this incident, it would seem best not to provoke or eat any phantoms found floating in the air.
(射命丸 文) (Aya Shameimaru)

Interview[edit]

Illustration by Chiha Ayami.

Aya

あれからもう一年以上経ちますけど、未だ幽霊の数は少なくならないのですが

It has been a year since this even, yet the number of phantoms hasn't seem to have decreased at all.

Youmu

これでも頑張っているのよ。頑張っている筈なのよ!

I'm still doing my best. I know I am!

Aya

でも結果はこの通りです

But that doesn't change the outcome.

Youmu

ぐすん

*Sniff*

Aya

もう幽霊にも慣れました。幻想郷に幽霊が飛んでいるのも当たり前の風景になりましたね

Gensokyo has already become accustomed to the phantoms. It's now perfectly normal to see phantoms flying around everywhere.

Youmu

嫌味ですか

Are you being sarcastic?

Aya

そんな事ありませんよ。あの世が身近に感じられると言うか、いつも死と隣り合わせと言うか、人生崖っぷち?

Not at all. Maybe we're becoming more familiar with Netherworld, or constantly staring death in the face. That feeling of teetering on the brink...

Youmu

もう何だかよく判らないけど、あの世とこの世の行き来が楽になったのは間違いないかな。最近は当たり前のように生きている人間や妖怪があの世にやってくるし、この世に死んだ者もやってきちゃう

I don't know what you're trying to say, but it has definitely become easier to travel between this world and the Netherworld. These days, living humans and youkai come to the Netherworld without even thinking about it, and the dead come to this world, too.

Aya

そんなんで良いんですか?

Isn't this an acceptable situation?

Youmu

良くは無い、と思う

It's not. I don't think it is, anyway.

Aya

はっきりとしないのですね

You don't sound convinced.

Youmu

死者はあの世に、生者はこの世に。当たり前の事が本当は一番正しい筈なのに、それが少しずれても世の中は正常に動く。死者が生き返ることも生者が予定されていない死を迎えることもない。すると何故幽霊をあの世に連れ戻さないといけないのか、何故生きている者があの世に来てはいけないのか判らなくなってしまうのよ

The dead belong to the Netherworld; the living belong to this world. Though the natural order of things is ideal, slight disturbances should not affect much. The dead aren't about to come back to life, and the living won't unexpectedly drop dead. So, I'm not sure why I have to keep the phantoms in the Netherworld and keep the living out.

Aya

あなたが迷っていては元通りには戻らないのでは?

If you're confused, the situation will never return to normal, I guess.

Youmu

それにあの世とこの世の結界は一向に修復される様子もないし、私一人では何とも……

Plus, the boundary between the Netherworld and the world doesn't look like it'll be repaired. I can't do anything by myself...

Aya

そういえば貴方は生きている人間でもありますよね? そんな貴方が何故あの世で働いているのですか?

By the way, you're also a living human, aren't you? Why do you work in the Netherworld?

Youmu

私? そんなこと考えてみたことも無かったわ。でも私は死んでいる人間でもありますので…… うーん

Me? I've never thought of that. But I'm a dead human, too, so... hmm...

Aya

って、そんなに考え込まれても困ります。てっきり、給金が良いから、休みが多いとか返答されると思って質問しただけですから

You don't have to think about it too hard. I was expecting an answer like "I'm paid well" or "I have a lot of time off".

Youmu

給金なんて貰ったこと無いし……休みって何でしたっけ?

I've never been paid at all... and what's "time off"?

Aya

しくしく。可哀想に

Ah, what a pity.

Youmu

あ、いや。そんな同情されても……。三時にはおやつが出ますし、病気の時位は休みを貰った事もあったような気がします……

Oh, I don't need any sympathy... I get a snack at 3 o'clock, and I've gotten sick leave before, I guess...

Aya

しくしく

Truly a pity...

Youmu

ともかく、私は生まれた時から西行寺家に仕えてますので、これが当たり前なんですよ

Anyway, I've served the Saigyouji clan since I was born, so it's natural for me.

Aya

当たり前のことが、果たして本当に一番正しいことなのか、少し疑問を感じますが

I'm starting to wonder if the natural thing to do is always right.

Youmu

当たり前の事は一番正しいこと。人によって当たり前が異なるだなんて言うけど、そんな上っ面の常識レベルの話ではないのです。死者はあの世に生者はこの世に。妖怪は人を襲い人間は妖怪を退治する。本当の当たり前は誰から見ても同じ究極の真実だ、って教えられてきましたから

The natural order of things is right. They say it differs from person to person, but I'm not talking about that kind of obvious common sense. The dead belong to the Netherworld and the living belong to this world; the youkai eat humans and the humans defeat youkai. I've been taught that the natural order of the world is the overlying ultimate truth.

Aya

その当たり前が、給金無し休み無し、なんですね

And one of your 'natural' things is to have no salary and no vacation?

Youmu

ぐすん

*Sniffle*

Profile[edit]

魂魄妖夢 (こんぱく ようむ) Youmu Konpaku
幽霊と人間のハーフ。西行寺家の庭師とお嬢様の警護役を兼ねる、生真面目な二刀流剣士。 A half-phantom and half-human. An earnest dual katana-wielding swordswoman tripling as the gardener of the Saigyouji clan and guardian of their mistress.
出演作:『東方妖々夢』『東方萃夢想』『東方永夜抄』『東方花映塚』 Appearances: Perfect Cherry Blossom, Immaterial and Missing Power, Imperishable Night, Phantasmagoria of Flower View


< Article and Interview: Lyrica 
Guide to Notable Locales in Gensokyo: Hakugyokurou 
 Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red   Article and Interview: Yukari
 Music Column: Dying in the Dendera Fields in the Night
>