Shanghai Alice Correspondence Three Fairies Version/Volume 7

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上海アリス通信 三精版 ~第6号~ [sic]

Shanghai Alice Correspondence Three Fairies Version - volume 6 [sic]

【幽霊で涼む幻想郷の夏】 "Phantom-cooled summer of Gensokyo"
 今の幻想郷にとって、1匹では力はなくとも数が多く我が物顔にふるまっているのが、妖精と幽霊である。 In present-day Gensokyo, there are two types of creatures that are powerless on their own, but become rambunctious in large numbers. These are fairies and phantoms.
 妖精は自然の何処にでも存在し、非常に悪戯好きで人間に迷惑をかける上に、完全に滅されることは無い。 Fairies can be found anywhere within nature. They really enjoy causing trouble for humans by pulling pranks on them, and on top of that, they never truly perish.
 一方、幽霊もあらゆる場所に出没する。さらにあらゆる物体をすりぬけるという厄介な生き物(?)である。 Phantoms can also appear anywhere. It's actually easier for them to do so, since they can slip through any material object, which makes them troublesome life(?) forms.
 ただ、ほとんどの幽霊は口を利くことができないし、はっきりとした姿形を持つこともできないし、悪戯することも無い。強いていえば鬱陶しいだけの存在である。 However, they can't speak and don't have a tangible form, so they they can't cause much mischief. At most, they're just a nuisance.
 今回の話でも出てきているが、幽霊は温度が低い。何か幽霊が出そうな時にゾクっとしたりするのも、幽霊の温度が低いからである。この幽霊の特性を有効活用したのが、肝試しである。暑い夏に肝試しをして涼んだりするのは、昔の人の叡智なのだ。 It was mentioned in this chapter, but phantoms are cold. This is why you get the chills right before a phantom appears. The "test of courage" makes use of that unique characteristic. People in the past were smart enough come up with the idea to cool themselves in the summertime.
 幻想郷も昔から幽霊が多かったわけではない。幽霊が何処でも見られるようになったのは、つい最近のことである。というのも、冥界と顕界の境界が、境界の妖怪の力によって曖昧になっているからだ。今では当たり前のように幽霊が幻想郷に押し寄せてきたり、生きたまま冥界に行ったりするようになっている。 It's not that Gensokyo was always full of phantoms; it's actually only recently that spirits have started to appear everywhere. According to the youkai of boundaries, this is because the border between human world and Netherworld is growing thinner. This has naturally led to spirits pouring into Gensokyo from the Netherworld, as well as living beings traveling to the Netherworld without dying.
 冥界には、見渡す限り桜が咲く庭、枯山水の中庭を持つ美しい日本屋敷、その屋敷に住み、冥界の管理者である亡霊など、興味深い世界であるが、そこの話はまた別の機会に。 今回初登場の魂魄妖夢(こんぱくようむ)は、普段は冥界に住んでいる、人間と幽霊のハーフである。亡霊の西行寺幽々子(さいぎょうじゆゆこ)に仕える小間使である。 With a grove of cherry trees stretching as far as the eye can see and a beautiful Japanese-style mansion in the middle of a zen garden, the Netherworld itself is a fascinating place. The mistress of that mansion is the ghost who oversees the Netherworld, but that is another story. This chapter featured Youmu Konpaku for the first time. She is a half-human, half-phantom who usually resides in Netherworld. She works as a servant for Yuyuko Saigyouji, a ghost.
 妖夢は、幻想郷で幽霊が乱獲されていると聞き、幽霊を捕まえてどうするんだろう、と半信半疑のまま幻想郷に向かったが……というお話。 The story is that Youmu heard about the phantoms overrunning Gensokyo, so she headed out, wondering about how to catch them.
 彼女は真面目過ぎてからかわれ易く、何処に行っても任務が遂行できないでいる。しかし、実力が無いわけではなく、二刀流の使い手で、瞬発力と集中力では彼女の右に出る者は居ないといわれる位である。 She is an overly serious character and is easy to tease. Wherever she goes, she can't fulfill her duties. But she's not helpless, as she is a master of dual-wielding sword techniques, and it is said that she is second to none when it comes to concentration and sheer force.
 三妖精も後で彼女に見つかって、きっと痛い目に遭っていることだろう。 The three fairies will meet her later, and they'll probably go through a lot of pain when they do.


"The divine voice of the heavens"

 ご無沙汰しております。ZUNです。 Sorry for the long wait. It's ZUN.
 この雑誌が出るころには梅雨は明けてるだろうなあと思いつつ、今はジメジメとした日本を楽しんでいます。梅雨が明けたら、今年こそはビアガーデン巡りをするぞ、と大きな野望も忘れずに。 I'm still enjoying the Japanese rainy season at the time of writing, but it probably will have already ended once this is published. I haven't forgotten about my high ambitions to visit some beer gardens this year after this damp season has passed.
 さて、今回の話は幽霊話ですが、東方の幽霊は全く怖くないんですよね。 Well, we had a ghost story this time, but ghosts and phantoms in Touhou aren't scary at all, are they?
 何故なら、幽霊ってのは、生命力の発現みたいなもんで、別に人間に危害を与えるとは限らないからです。 That's because they look lively enough, and they aren't necessarily trying to harm humans.
 そもそも、なぜ人間は幽霊を恐れるのでしょうか? 幽霊は人間に危害を与えるのでしょうか? Actually, why are humans even afraid of ghosts in the first place? Are they that dangerous?
 恐らく、人間にとって幽霊の象徴は死者の魂であり、出てくる筈の無い存在だから、常識が壊れるのを恐れているのでしょう。 Perhaps, from human standpoint, a ghost symbolizes a soul of a deceased, something that shouldn't exist, and they're afraid of something that goes beyond their common sense.
 幽霊は、幽霊が居るのが当たり前の世界なら、恐れる必要の無い存在です。せいぜい、悪い人間の霊なら悪い人間と同程度気を付ければ十分です。 When you live in a world where existence of ghosts is natural, they shouldn't be something to be feared. At most, if they are souls of bad people, you just have to be as careful around them as you were if they were alive.
 暑い夏、うちにも幽霊でないかねぇ……って、私は意外と幽霊を見るたちなんですよ。いやほんと。見るだけで捕まえられませんが。実際、見ると逃げ出しますが。 Maybe I can get a phantom for this hot summer... Actually, it may surprise you that I can see ghosts. No, I'm serious. I just don't try to catch them; I run away.
      博麗神主 Hakurei Head Priest