Eastern and Little Nature Deity/Fairy of the Moon

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月の妖精

Fairy of the Moon

孫康映雪(そんこうえいせつ)。大陸の偉人は油を買うお金が無くても月の明かりを雪に映し、書を読んだ。あの狂おしい月光をかき集めて本を読んだのだ。読んで――高官まで上り詰めたのだ。それはその者の勤勉さを称えよという意味か?
それとも、お前も努力を怠るなという戒めか?
いや、そうではない。そんな訳がない。そんなくだらない意味であってはならない。

Sankoueisetsu. A great man from the continent without money to buy oil reflected moonlight on snow, and read documents. He read his books gathered together in that maddening moonlight. He read – and rose to the rank of high official. Was that in praise of that person's diligence?
In otherwords, the meaning of the story is 'you too must not shirk effort'?
No, that's not it. That's not it at all. You must not think it to be that sort of worthless meaning.

「ふぁあ~あ。朝から何陰気な顔をしてんのよ」

"Fuaa~a. It's mornin', so what's with the gloomy face?"

一番最後に目が覚めたサニーミルクは、気の抜けた声を漏らしながら、リビングに座っていたルナチャイルドを小突いた。

While Sunny Milk, the last to wake up, let leak a languorous voice, Luna Child sitting in the living room, poked her.

「痛。昨日の事思い出して不機嫌になっていただけよ」

"Ow. You're just remembering yesterday and pouting."

「昨日の事を憶えているのは、夜も寝てないルナだけよ。普通は――」

"I can't even sleep even at night, remembering yesterday. Normally –- "

ルナチャイルドと向かい合わせに座っていたスターサファイアは、お寝坊さんであるサニーミルクの方を向いて言った。

Star Sapphire, sitting across from Luna Child, turned and spoke to Sunny Milk, the sleepyhead.

「――普通は寝たら忘れるもんだわ。何もかも」

"Normally, you'd forget after sleeping. Just about everything."

「今日って何かあったっけ?」

"Wasn't there something about today?"

「確かに、スターの言う通り普通は (、、、) 寝たら忘れるのね。今日は宝探しの日でしょうに」

"Certainly, as Star said you'd normally forget after sleeping. Today's a treasure hunting day."

サニーは大げさに驚いた振りをして「ああ、ごめんごめん。すぐに支度するね」とだけ言った。

Sunny looked exaggeratedly surprised and said, "Ah, sorry, sorry. I'll make preparations immediately!"

ルナとスターは既に支度をすまし、リビングのテーブルで珈琲の入ったカップを手に、お寝坊さんの支度が終わるのを待っていた。

Since Luna and Star had already made preparations, they waited around the living room table with coffee cups in their hands for the sleepyhead's preparations to finish.

「昨日はさ、みんな酷いよ。私だけ置いて逃げちゃうんだもの」

"About yesterday, everyone was awful! Running away and leaving only me behind…"

「それは違うのよ、ルナ。私達はルナを信頼しているから置いていくのよ」

"It's not like that, Luna. We left you behind because we believed in you."

「適当な事を言って」

"You say it like it was nothing!"

昨日は神社の日 (、、、、) だった。神社の日とはその名の通り、神社方面へ行って悪戯を仕掛けて愉しむ日の事である。結局いつものように巫女に見つかり命辛々逃げてきたのだが、ルナだけ逃げ遅れて捕まってしまったのだ。

Yesterday was a "Shrine Day." On a Shrine Day, as the name implies, they go to the shrine and play fun pranks. In the end, as always, they were found by the shrine maiden and fled for dear life. Only Luna had escaped too late and was caught.

「私一人だけ説教されてたのよ。余り聞いてなかったけど」

"I was given a one-on-one sermon! I didn't listen much, though."

『聞いてなかったじゃなくて、聞こえなかった (、、、、、、、) 、でしょ?」

"It's not that you didn't listen, but you couldn't hear her, right?"

ルナは音を消す事が出来るのである。だから、ルナに説教とは、馬の耳に念仏、石地蔵に蜂、と同じだと思われやすい。

Luna can erase sounds. Therefore, giving a sermon to Luna is as pointless as praying into a horse's ear, stinging a Jizo statue, and so forth.

「そうしたいのは山々だけど、聞いている振りでもしないと相槌も打てないじゃないの。それじゃあ聞こえてない事がバレバレじゃない。だから――」

"I wanted to do that so much, but if you just pretend to listen you can't respond to what she's saying. And then, you'll be found out, won't you? And so – "

ルナは少々早口でまくし立てた後、残り僅かとなった珈琲に砂糖を落としかき混ぜた。
そうだ。不機嫌だったのは二人に置いて逃げられたからではない。そんなのはいつもの事だし、私の能力からしたらしんがりを務めるのは当然の事だ。私が不機嫌だったのは……なんだっけ?

After Luna went on and on for a short while with her fast-talking, they mixed sugar into the little bit of coffee remaining.
That's right. I'm not pouting because those two left me behind. That happens all the time, as with my power I naturally serve as the rearguard. The reason I'm pouting is… what was it?

「砂糖入れ過ぎじゃない? 糖にょ……珈琲飴になっちゃうよ?」

"Didn't you put in too much sugar? Sugar… You making coffee candy?"

「のわ!」

"Yeah!"

お寝坊さんが、 (ようや) く戻ってきた。

The sleepyhead finally came back.

「おまたせー。さ、今日は宝探しに出発よー!」

"Sorry I made you wait! So, today we're going out treasure hunting!"

暗く冷え切った店内は、不思議な道具と埃で満ちていた。彼は窓の光を取り入れるべく、カーテンを開けた。
外の世界は白色一面である。冬の日光が雪に反射し、必要以上に光が店内に飛び込んできた為、カーテンを半分戻した。
窓の雪で知られる雪で集める光とは、日の光ではなく月の光である。日の光は雪の表面を溶かし、僅かに反射角を変えてしまうので、ギラギラ反射してしまう。日の光の反射では本を読む事も出来ない、と彼は思った。

The cold, dark store interior was filled with curious tools and dust. The man had opened the curtains to let in light from the window.
The outside world was entirely white. Winter sunlight reflects on snow, so way more light shone into the store than was needed. The man returned the curtains to half-closed.
The light gathered in the snow outside the window was not sunlight but moonlight. Sunlight dissolves the surface of snow, and because the angle of reflection is slightly changed, it sparkles as it reflects. The man thought it wouldn't work to read books from the reflection of sunlight.

「珍しい来客だね。妖精三人だなんて。寒くなってきたんで何か物入りかい?」

"What unusual visitors. Three fairies. It's gotten cold, but you've got expenses?"

幻想郷の古道具屋、香霖堂 (こうりんどう) の店主である森近霖之助 (もりちかしんのすけ) [1]はそう言った。

Morichika Rinnosuke, the shopkeeper of Gensokyo's secondhand store, Kourindou, said.

「え、いえ。買い物ではないのですが」

"Eh? No. We're not here for shopping," Sunny replied.

そうサニーが言うと「お金持ってないしね」とスターが付け足した。

"Since we don't have any money," Star added.

「ま、冷やかしだと思っていたよ。妖精がこの知的な道具だらけの店で買い物なんてする訳がない」

"Well, I thought it'd just be window-shopping. Fairies wouldn't go shopping at a shop full of these intellectual tools."

霖之助は冷やかしには慣れているようだったが、やっぱり客じゃないのかと、がっかりした感じだった。それを見て慌ててサニーが言った。

Rinnosuke was used to window shoppers, but of course he felt disappointed that they weren't customers. Seeing this, Sunny said in a fluster,

「冷やかしというか、完全な冷やかしじゃないわ。さっき森で宝探しをしていて、珍しい物を見つけたの。何なのか判らなかったのでこの店に持ってきたのよ」

"It's not window-shopping, no, we're not just window shopping! Some time ago in the forest we were treasure hunting and found a strange object. We didn't know what I was, so we brought it to this shop."

「ああ、それを先に言いなさい。何かな?」

"Ah, you should've said that earlier. What is it?"

不思議な物――それは細長い真っ直ぐな白い棒で、一目で自然の産物ではない事が判る造形をしていた。太さは片手で握れる程度で、重さは棒の大きさから想像出来る重さより遙かに軽く、表面は硝子で出来ているようだった。
三妖精はその不思議な物を、割れないように抱えて霖之助に渡した。
霖之助はその不思議な道具を手渡された途端、全てを理解したような顔をして、割れないようにそっと机に置いた。三妖精は自分達が見つけた物が珍しい物、高価な物じゃないかと期待し落ち着かない様子だった。反対に霖之助は、目の前の必要以上に期待し過ぎている三妖精にどう説明しようか悩んでいるようだった。

A strange object – that is a long, narrow, straight white pole, that you could see at a glance was not crafted by nature. Its width was that it could be grasped with one hand, and its weight was much lighter than you would guess from its size. Its surface looked like it was made of glass.
The three fairies, not knowing what that strange object could be, carried it here and turned it over to Rinnosuke.
Just as Rinnosuke held the strange object in his hands, he made an expression as if he understood totally, and placed it gently on his desk. The three fairies looked hopeful that their unusual discovery would reel in a high price, and that hope wasn't abating. Rinnosuke worried about how to break it to the fairies.

「残念ながらこれは珍しい物ではない。これは、外の世界で光を放つ道具だね。外の世界では『蛍光灯』と呼ばれ、最も一般的な物の一つだよ。ただ、これを光らす方の道具はうちには無いけど……」

"It's a shame, but this isn't anything unusual. This is a tool of the outside world meant to emit light. In the outside world it's called a 'fluorescent lamp,' and is an extremely common object. However, I don't have the tool that makes this shine here…"

彼は珍しい物じゃないと言ったので三妖精ががっかりすると思ったのか、お茶を淹れにその場を去った。だが、三妖精はむしろはしゃいでいたのである。

He thought the three fairies would be disappointed that this wasn't a rare object, and went to get hot water to make tea. But the three fairies were instead in high spirits.

「けいこうとうだって。光を発するってよ? どうなのサニー」

"He said 'fluorescent lamp.' And it gives off light? What do you think, Sunny?

「凄い物見つけたじゃない」

"An amazing discovery, isn't it?"

「今回の手柄は、これを見つけたルナね」

"And this time's achievement is all thanks to Luna, who found it!"

予想外の好反応に霖之助は、「そ、そうかい。良い物を見つけて良かったね」と言った。

To that unexpectedly positive reaction, Rinnosuke replied, "I, is that so? Looks like you found something good. Good for you."

「ただ、さっきも言った通り、今のところこれを光らす手段がないんだ」

"But, as you said just now, at present there's no way to make it shine."

「そんなの。私達が勝手に光らせるわよ」

"That's right. We can make it shine on its own!"

「色々試していつか光らせるわ」

"We'll try lots of things and somehow make it shine!"

「適当にやって何とか光らせるわ」

"We'll do the right things and somehow get it to shine!"

妖精らしい何も考えて無さそうな返事である。彼は半分ほっとしたような、呆れたような表情をして、蛍光灯に付いた汚れを拭いた。

The replies were all unthinking, just like fairies. The man breathed a half-sigh, and with a disgusted grimace wiped the dirt off the light.

「まぁ、蛍光灯は割れやすいから……これだけ完品が落ちている事は珍しいね」

"Well, fluorescent lamps break easily, so… it's rare for a whole one to fall into Gensokyo."

珍しいってよ、とサニーはルナを小突いた。

Hearing 'it's rare,' Sunny poked at Luna.

「痛。ぽんぽん叩かないでよ。でも、蛍の光みたいに光る (、、、、、、、、、) んでしょうねぇ。うーん楽しみ」

"Ow. Don't hit my tummy! But, it shines like a firefly, right? Hmm, I'm looking forward to it!"

彼の表情が一瞬曇ったように見えた。妖精の一人が不思議な事を言ったからだ。蛍光とは蛍の光のように光る事なのだろうか。

The man's face instantly clouded. Since the fairy had said something curious. Does a fluorescent lamp shine like a firefly?[2]

「いやいや、蛍光灯と言っても蛍の光のように光る訳じゃないよ。蛍光とは故事から来ているんだ。『車胤聚螢(しゃいんしゅうけい)』――大陸の偉人は油を買うお金が無くても、蛍を集めて書を読んだ。読んで高官まで上り詰めた。そういう努力を称えて、蛍光灯と名付けたんだよ。対になる言葉に――」

"No, no, even if it's called a fluorescent lamp, it doesn't necessarily shine like a firefly. Fireflies come from its origin. Shainshuukei – when a great man from the continent had no money to buy oil, he gathered fireflies and read documents. He read, and he rose to the rank of high official. It's named a fluorescent lamp in honour of that man's effort. To words that formed a pair…"

『孫康映雪』という言葉がある。これも同様に努力を惜しむなという戒めである。霖之助は得意げにそう語った。

There is a word, sankoueitsu. This, too, is a similar caution to not be sparing in effort. Rinnosuke triumphantly lectured.

「妖精の君達には馬の耳に念仏かな? でも、その蛍光灯を努力して (、、、、) 光らせて見たら、きっと努力の大切さが判るだろう。君達は光の妖精なんだろう?」

"What, is all this going into one fairy ear and out the other? But if you try with effort to make that lamp shine, surely you already understand this story's importance. You all're the fairies of light, right?

と言って霖之助はお茶を飲んだ。

Rinnosuke said, sipping his tea.

「あれ? 私達そんな事言ったっけ?」ルナはそう言った。

"Huh? Did we say that?" Luna asked.

「霊夢達から話だけは聞いていたよ。この森付近に悪戯好きで迷惑な光の三妖精が居るってね。光の妖精だから、蛍光灯に興味を持ったんだろう。で、蛍光灯を見つけたのが君で、たしか……月の光の妖精だね? 蛍の光に月光と雪。ま、光らせる努力をしてみたら、きっと良い事があるだろう」

"I've just heard it from Reimu and the like. That the three fairies of light live in the neighbourhood of this forest and play troublesome pranks. Since you're light fairies, of course you'd be interested in fluorescent lamps. But, since you found a fluorescent lamp, surely… you'd be fairies of moonlight? Firefly lights, moonlight and snow. Well, if you put in effort to make it shine, undoubtedly something good will happen."

努力……その言葉で思い出した。今朝不機嫌だった理由が。昨日も同じ事を巫女に言われたのだ。昔の人は月の光を雪で集めて本を読んで勉強したと言うのに、その大本の月の光がそんな悪戯ばかりしていて良いのかと、もっと勉強したらどうなのか、と。
妖精の自分にとって勉強の大切さはよく分からない。勉強する事によって高度な悪戯が楽に出来るようになるのなら、勉強も (やぶさ) かではないと思う。言うなれば、勉強も悪戯の一環でしか無いと思う。
いや、勉強しろとか努力しろとかそんな事はどうでも良いのだ。それは悪戯――つまり楽しい事の一環なのだから。勉強なんて意味無い、努力なんて無駄。そんな間違った勉強観を元に不機嫌になっている訳ではない。
そうだ、孫康映雪……だ。

Effort… with that word, I remembered it. The reason I was pouting this morning. Yesterday, the shrine maiden told me the same thing. Although it is said that the ancients studied books by moonlight gathered in snow, you suppose it alright to only use that moonlight as a foundation for pranks, what would happen if you studied more, that sort of thing.
The fairy didn't really understand how study could be important for her. If she could study and easily play more advanced pranks, she thought she wouldn't be reluctant to even study. So to speak, she didn't think studies and pranks had even a single connection.
No, stuff like studying and effort is not worth worrying about. That is, pranks – in other words, fun things – don't have any connection. Study has no meaning, and effort is useless. That incorrect outlook on study wasn't the origin of her pouting.
That's right, it's sankoueisetsu.

「良かったね。今日の宝探しの勝者はルナよ」

"Good for you! The winner of today's treasure hunt is Luna!"

「うーん」

"Hmm."

三妖精は霖之助にお礼も言わず、香霖堂を後にした。森は日光は当たらないが、風も吹かず、寒さは感じられなかった。

The three fairies left Kourindou without a word of thanks to Rinnosuke. The forest was shielded from sunlight, but the wind didn't blow, and they couldn't feel the cold.

「どうしたの? ルナ。今日は自慢しても良いのよ?」

"What's up, Luna? It's okay to boast today!"

「なんて言うか。何かすっきりしないのよねぇ」

"What are you talking about? Something's all muddled, you know."

「その蛍光灯を光らせる手段が判らないから?」

"Since we don't know a way to make that fluorescent lamp shine?"

「それもあるけど……何かすっきりしないのよねぇ」

"Well there's that, too… Something's all muddled, you know."

「何よその、すっきりしない答え。周りもすっきりしないわよ」

"What's up with that 'all muddled' answer? Everything around us is all muddled, you know."

サニーはどうしたもんだか、と言った表情をした。ずっと黙っていたスターは「ま、ルナだしね」と言った。
ルナは蛍光灯を大事そうに抱えていた為、いつもより移動速度が遅かった。

Sunny made a face as if to say 'what's the deal with her?' Star, who had kept silent, replied, "Well, it's Luna."
Luna carried the fluorescent lamp under her arms as if it were valuable, and was moving more slowly than usual.

「……努力じゃないのよ。大切なのは、うーん」

"…It's not effort. The important thing is, hmm…"

サニーとスターの二人は顔を見合わせて、どうしちゃったのかな、と言った、その時である。

Sunny and Star exchanged glances, as if wondering what to do, and it happened at that time.

スターが「走って!」と大きな声で言った。直後にサニーとスターは走った。スターは生き物の位置を知る事が出来る能力を持つのである、こう言った時は、何者かが後ろに現われた時である。
妖精は力が弱い上に、他の生き物に迷惑をかける事が多く、妖怪や人間と出くわすと出会い頭に攻撃を受ける事が多い。だから、スターの能力は危険回避として役に立つ。
ルナはと言うと、いつものように逃げ遅れてしまった。と言うか蛍光灯を持ち、考え事をしていたから仕様が無いのであるが……他の二人は一切助けようとしない。

Star shouted "Run!" with a great voice. Sunny and Star ran immediately. Star has the ability to know the locations of living creatures, and at the time she spoke, somebody had appeared behind them.
Not only are fairies weak, but they cause a lot of trouble for other creatures, so it's common for them to be attacked when coming across humans in passing. Therefore, Star's power was useful for danger evasion.
As for Luna, as always, she was slow to flee. Or perhaps it's best to say that since she was carrying the fluorescent lamp and was deep in thought, she had no way to flee… The other two didn't help her at all.

「はぁはぁ! 逃げなきゃ……」

"Haah… haah… Gotta run…"

蛍光灯を捨てていくという事はルナの頭の中にはなかった。今は気付かれないように移動する事だけで頭の中が一杯だったのだ。

It never occurred to Luna to drop the fluorescent lamp and flee. Currently, the inside of her head was full just trying to realize what she had forgotten.

「ちょっと」

"Wait!"

周りの音を消して逃げている筈のルナに、何故か呼びかける声が聞こえた。

Luna, who thought she had erased all surrounding sounds, somehow heard a voice calling out to her.

「ちょっと、そこな妖精さん」

"Wait, you there fairy-san!"

ルナは瞬時に、声の主が危険な妖怪だと判った。音をかき消しているというのに、音が聞こえるという事は普通の声ではない。心に聞こえる声だからだ。
非常に危険だと感じた。だが、ルナは逃げるのを諦めた。何故なら、逃げていたというのに声の主は既に真正面に立っていた (、、、、、、、、、、、) のである。

Luna instantly knew that the owner of that voice was a dangerous youkai. She had erased all sound, so if she could hear this voice, it wasn't normal. Because it was a voice she heard in her heart.
She sensed it was a dangerous emergency. However, Luna gave up on running. Because the owner of that voice was already standing right in front of her.

「お悩みのようね。月の光の妖精さん」

"You seem distressed, moonlight fairy-san."

「何も捕って喰おうって訳じゃないのよ。外の道具を持って香霖堂から出てくる姿を見かけたからね。ちょっと後を付けてただけなのに……」

"It's not like I'm not going to catch and eat you. Since I noticed you leaving Kourindou carrying a tool of the outside, I followed you for a little while afterwards…"

「ふあ、貴方は誰です・・・・・か?」

"Fua, who could you… be?"

冷たい雪の上に尻餅をついて驚いているルナは、素っ頓狂な声を上げて、刺激しないように注意しながら言葉を選んでいた。

Luna, who had been startled and fell on the cold snow, raised a hectic voice, and chose her words cautiously to not provoke the youkai.

「私は、八雲――境界の妖怪。外の世界の道具の管理者でもあるの」

"I am Yakumo, the youkai of boundaries. I am also the warden of tools from the outside world."

「きょ、境界の妖怪!?」

"Yo-youkai of boundaries!?"

境界の妖怪。なるほど聞いた事がある。それは幻想郷と外の世界の境界を自由に行き来できる妖怪の事だったと思う。ルナにとって不幸な事に、幻想郷で最も恐ろしい妖怪の一人だ。

The youkai of boundaries. That is why she heard her. She is a youkai who can freely come and go over the boundary between Gensokyo and the outside world. For Luna, this was a disaster, Gensokyo's one most terrifying youkai.

「貴方の持っているのは……蛍光灯か。なーんだ。大したもんじゃないわね。何か危険な物が妖精の手に渡ったのかと思っただけよ」

"The thing you're carrying… a fluorescent lamp? What's this? That's no big deal. And here I was thinking that some dangerous object was handed over to a fairy."

「危険な物?」

"Dangerous object?"

「外の世界には非常に危険な物もある。人間や妖怪ならまだしも、妖精には危険さも伝わらないからね。面白半分に使われて幻想郷を滅茶苦茶にされても困るし……でも蛍光灯なら別に良いわよ。それは貴方達の物……振り回すも良し神棚に飾るも良し、お好きなように」

"Extraordinarily dangerous objects also exist in the outside world. For humans and fairies – rather, they would make fairies dangerous. If they were recklessly used for fun here in Gensokyo, I'd be quite troubled… But a fluorescent lamp is, of course, alright. That is yours… use it as you'd like, swinging it about or decorating a kamidana.[3]

ルナは、緊張しすぎて目の前の妖怪が言っている事が良く理解出来ていない。

Luna was too nervous and couldn't really understood what the youkai in front of her was saying.

「そう、お騒がせしたお詫びとして、貴方に良い助言をしてあげるわ」

"So, as an apology for disturbing you, I will give you some advice."

それは、孫康映雪――。妖怪の様子が少し変化した気がして、ルナは再び震えた。

That is sankoueisetsu. The youkai's appearance altered slightly, and Luna shivered again.

「孫康映雪。巫女の説教に使われたり、けんどんな古道具屋の蘊蓄 (うんちく) に言われたように、努力を惜しむなという戒めに使われる事が多いけど、それは違うのよ。外の世界では、支配者が民衆を抑え付ける言葉として使われるようだけど、それも勿論違う。貴方はそこに釈然としない何かを感じて、悩んでいたんでしょう?本当の意味は――」

"Sankoueisetsu. Just as the shrine maiden in her sermon and as the secondhand shopkeeper with his vast stock of information said, it is often used as a warning against sparing effort, but that is incorrect. In the outside world, the words are used by rulers to repress the masses, but that also is of course incorrect. You feel not fully satisfied with that, and are troubled, are you not? Its real meaning is…"

妖怪は持っていた傘の先を、ルナの鼻先に当てた。

The youkai touched the tip of Luna's nose with the point of her umbrella.

「――月の力を称える言葉だと言うのに。月の光の力は、日の光よりも優れている。静かなる力、心の色、悩み、月の光は何者にも惑わされない光なのよ。さあ、起きなさい。貴方が他の日の光と星の光にいいようにあしらわれているのは何故だと思う?」

"… A word to extol the power of the moon. The power of moonlight far exceeds that of sunlight. That is a quiet power, the colour of the heart, sorrow… what kind of person is not entranced and bewildered by moonlight? Come, wake up. Why do you think you are treated so well by the others, the sunlight and starlight?"

今度は蛍光灯の先端に傘を向けた。

This time, she pointed her umbrella at the apex of the fluorescent lamp.

「貴方が一番――」

"You are the first…"

ルナが手にしていた蛍光灯が、真っ白に明滅した。森中の光がこの蛍光灯に集中したように見えた。森全体が明滅して見える。この光を見ていると、何だか気が遠くなる。そして、そのまま気を失った。

The fluorescent lamp in Luna's hands flickered with a pure white light. It looked as if the forest's light had concentrated in this fluorescent lamp. The whole forest flickered. Seeing this light, she somehow felt faint. Then, she parted with her consciousness.

「貴方が一番――妖怪に近いから」

"You are the first… because you are the closest to a youkai."

「ふぁあ~あ。朝から何陰気な顔をしてんのよ」

"Fuaa~a. It's mornin', so what's with the gloomy face?"

いつものように、一番のお寝坊さんが一番偉そうに朝の挨拶をしてきた。
思うに、サニーは昼間は一番元気な分、夜は完全に活動を停止するのではないか。だから、睡眠時間が長いのではないか。

As always, the biggest sleepyhead gave the most self-important morning greeting.
Presumably, Sunny is the most cheerful during the day. She doesn't completely cease activity during the night, so she doesn't sleep long.

「サニーが起きてくるのが遅いから不機嫌だったの」

"It's 'cause you always wake up so late, Sunny."

スターは朝食の用意をしながら「そんなのいつもの事。いつもの事」と言った。
ルナは、月の光の妖精である。活動時間はどちらかというと夜の方が向いている。そう、妖怪の活動する夜が彼女の本領発揮する時間だ。

"It's always like that. Always like that," Star said as she prepared breakfast.
Luna is the Fairy of the Moon. If she had to say, she was more cut out for activity at night. That's right, she was at her best at night, the time when youkai are about.

「昨日は大丈夫だったの? なかなかルナが逃げてこないから、仕方が無く先に帰って暖を取っていたわよ」

"Were you alright yesterday? You didn't run at all yesterday, and it couldn't be helped, so we just went home and warmed ourselves up."

「何が仕方が無くよ。元から助ける気なんて無かったんでしょ?」

"What do you mean, 'couldn't be helped?' You weren't planning on helping me from the very start, weren't you?"

朝食の用意ができたので、三人は席に着いた。

Breakfast was ready, so the three sat down.

「でもね、あんまり昨日の事を覚えていないのよねぇ。何か妖怪に遭った気がするけど……もぐもぐ」

"But you know, I don't remember much about yesterday. I feel like I encountered some sort of youkai… nom, nom."

「もぐもぐ。忘れたくなる程、怖い目にあったのね」

"Nom, nom. From what I recall, it was really scary."

「もぐもぐ。健忘症じゃないかしら」

"Nom, nom. I wonder if it's amnesia?"

ルナは、何よケンボーショーって、とスターを小突いた。

Star poked at Luna – what's 'amnesia?'

「でも……なんとなく気分が晴れやかなのよね。それに何となく、あの蛍光灯が光ったのを見たような気がするの」

"But… for some reason, I feel all bright and clear. That's because… I feel like I saw that fluorescent lamp shine."

三人は天井に吊るした蛍光灯を見上げた。

The three looked up at to the fluorescent lamp hanged on the ceiling.

「幻覚でも見たんじゃないの?」

"Was that a hallucination?"

「白昼夢かな」

"Or a daydream, maybe."

ま、何にしても、見た事があると言うなら蛍光灯を光らす研究はルナが担当ね。とサニーは無責任に言い放って、いち早く食事を終えた。
光の妖精と言えど、蛍光灯を光らせる手段は全く想像できなかった。妖精は普通、新しい事に興味が移ると、前の興味は上書きされてしまう。もう明日まで蛍光灯の事を覚えてはいないかも知れない。
ルナは昨日出会った妖怪の事は既に覚えていなかった。それが妖怪の能力だったのか、明滅した蛍光灯に催眠効果が有ったのか、それともただ単に忘れてしまったのか判らなかったが、何か気持ちが晴れ晴れしていた。いつも活動的な他の二人にも、気後れする事は無かった。

Well, even so, since she said she saw it, the one in charge of investigating making the fluorescent lamp shine would be Luna. That's what Sunny irresponsibly declared, finishing her food before the others.
The Fairies of Light couldn't guess at all how to make the fluorescent lamp shine. Fairies normally shift their interest to new things, and their earlier interests are overwritten. They might not remember things that are already as far off as yesterday, like the fluorescent lamp.
Luna already couldn't remember anything about the youkai she ran into yesterday. She didn't know whether that was due to that youkai's ability, or the flickering fluorescent lamp had some hypnotic effect, or she just forgot normally, but somehow she felt just splendid. The always dynamic other two also didn't feel nervous at all.

「うーん、今日は何となく気分が良いのよね。何か、今日は逃げ遅れなくて済みそうな気がする」

"Hmm… somehow, I feel really good about today. Something… like I feel at ease that we won't be slow when we flee."

「いや、それを言うなら、逃げるような場面に出くわさないで済みそうだ、の方が前向きよ?」

"Nah, if you say that, isn't it more forward-facing to say you feel at ease that we won't ever have to flee?"

「ルナ、スター、何を言ってるのよ二人とも。逃げたら勝ちよ」

"Luna, Star, what are you two going on about? If we flee, we win!"

三人は簡単な朝食を終え、ルナは蛍光灯を棚の上に飾り、手を合わせた。そして、私達三人が妖怪に負けないくらい強くなれますように、と祈った。蛍光灯にそんな力が有るとは思っていないが、妖怪との接点もこの蛍光灯しか無かったからである。何となく昨日遭ったらしい妖怪ともう一度会いたい気がしていた。孫康映雪――月の光の力が一番であると認めたあの妖怪と……。

The three finished a simple breakfast, Luna placed the fluorescent lamp as decoration on a shelf and clapped her hands together. And, she prayed that we three would become strong enough to not lose to youkai. She didn't think fluorescent lamps had that sort of power, since only this fluorescent lamp had any contact with youkai. Somehow she felt she would like to meet with the youkai she encountered yesterday one more time. Sankoueisetsu… with that youkai, who recognized that the power of moonlight was first…

スターは、願い事を叶えるなら蛍光灯じゃなくて流れ星が良いわよ? と言い、ルナの襟を掴んで引っ張った。サニーはいつものように意気揚々と出発の号令をかけ、三人の気持ちが一つになった。

"Hey, isn't what you wish upon shooting stars, not fluorescent lamps?" Star said as she grabbed Luna by the collar and yanked her back. Sunny, as always, triumphantly commanded their departure, and the three's feelings became as one.

「さぁ今日は昼寝の日よー! 森で一番日の当たる場所を探して、そこで昼寝をするわよ!」

"So, today's a Siesta Day! We'll find the spot in the forest with the most sun, and, at that place, we'll take a nap!"

「おー!」

"Yeah!"



  1. A fault ruby is taken; the correct one is もりちかんのすけ.
  2. The kanji in fluorescent lamp, '蛍光灯,' literally mean "firefly light lamp."
  3. "God shelf," a miniature household Shinto shrine.