Strange Creators of Outer World/Who's Who of Humans & Youkai in Gensokyo/Yuyuko Saigyouji and Youmu Konpaku

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幻想郷人妖名鑑
魂魄妖夢
西行寺幽々子
Who's Who of Humans & Youkai in Gensokyo
Youmu Konpaku
Yuyuko Saigyouji
西行寺幽々子
種族
亡霊
Yuyuko Saigyouji
Species
Ghost
活動範囲
冥界
Place of Activity
Netherworld
主な能力
死を操る程度の能力
Special Abilities
Ability to Manipulate Death
活動
幽霊の管理
Activities
Management of Phantoms
魂魄妖夢
種族
半人半霊
Youmu Konpaku
Species
Half-human, Half-phantom
活動範囲
冥界
Place of Activity
Netherworld
主な能力
剣術を操る程度の能力
Special Abilities
Ability to Manipulate Swordsmanship
活動
白玉楼の庭師
Activities
Hakugyokurou's Gardener
半人半霊の庭師 The Half-human, Half-phantom Gardener
魂魄妖夢は、「妖々夢」5面のボスとして初登場した半人半霊だ。冥界の西行寺家に仕える庭師であり、剣術指南役も兼ねている。幽々子の意向で幻想郷中から「春」を集めていたが、その影響でいつまでも冬のままだったことから異変が発覚、春を取り返しに生身のまま冥界までやってきた主人公に懲らしめられた。 Youmu Konpaku is a half-human, half-phantom who made her debut as the boss of stage 5 in "Perfect Cherry Blossom". Employed as a gardener by the Saigyouji household, she also serves double duty as a fencing instructor. At Yuyuko's command, she gathered "spring" from Gensokyo. As a result, no matter how much time passed it remained winter, which caused the incident to be discovered and the protagonists to travel bodily into the Netherworld in order to take back the spring, punishing her in the process.
見た目は幼い女の子だが、半分は幽霊なので半分だけ寿命が無いことから、彼女の主同様長く半人半霊をやっていると思われる。基本的に素直でまじめなしっかり者だが、掴みどころの難しい人間の世話をしている影響か、やや騙されやすい傾向がある。 By appearance, she looks like an immature, young girl, but given that she's missing half of her life-span due to her being also a half-phantom, this half-human/half-ghost might have been around longer than it appears. Basically, she's a meek but also diligent and serious person, but since she has a hard time to get a grip on humans, she's rather naive and easy to trick, which happens a lot.
魂魄家は幽霊と人間のハーフの家系である。先代の魂魄妖忌は300年ほど西行寺家に仕えていたが、突如幼い妖夢に家督を譲って隠居するや、どこかへ行方をくらましてしまった。こうして未熟ながら妖夢が二代目として西行寺家に仕えることとなるのだが、急なバトンタッチのおかげか、だいたい主人である幽々子に振り回されている印象がある。ただ、妖夢の未熟さよりも幽々子の性格の方に原因がありそうな気はする。 The Konpaku family is a lineage of half-human, half-phantoms. Her predecessor was Konpaku Youki, who worked for the Saigyouji household for up to 300 years before suddenly retiring and absconding to unknown whereabouts, leaving young Youmu as the head of the family. And that's how the inexperienced Youmu ended up as the second generation servant of the Saigyouji household. Perhaps this is due to the sudden baton pass, but one gets the impression that she's simply at the mercy of her master's whims. On the other hand, that probably has more to do with Yuyuko's personality than Youmu's inexperience.
白楼剣と楼観剣 Hakurouken and Roukanken
西行寺家は冥界で幽霊の管理を任されていることからか、妖夢が所持しているふた振りの剣も、基本的には幽霊に関係する能力があるようだ。長い方が楼観剣で、妖夢がいうには「幽霊十匹分の殺傷力」があり、短い白楼剣の方は斬られた者の迷いを断つのだとか。幽霊は成仏し、人間は出血する。 Perhaps due to the Saigyouji household being responsible for the management of phantoms in the Netherworld, Youmu is in possession of a pair of swords, which both intrinsically have powers related to phantoms. The longer one is called Roukanken, and according to Youmu it can "Cut Through Ten Phantoms." As for the shorter Hakurouken, anyone cut by it will have their doubts severed. Phantoms will pass on, while humans will bleed.
華胥の亡霊 The Ghost of Dreamland
西行寺幽々子は「東方妖々夢」のラスボスである。庭師の妖夢に命じて幻想郷中から春を集める異変、通称「春雪異変」を起こしたが、奪われた春の気配をたどってきた巫女に懲らしめられた。性格は非常に暢気で常にとぼけたところがあり、亡霊――幽霊とは異なる非常に危険な存在であるにもかかわらず、人間に対しても極めて友好的だ。ただし、とぼけているのはあくまでもフリであり、実際には鋭い思考と観察眼を備えているようだ。従者の妖夢では、まだまだ彼女の思考を推し量るところまで到達していない。普段は冥界にある広大な屋敷・白玉楼に住んでいて、成仏や転生を待つ幽霊たちの管理を仕事としている。ちなみに幽霊の統制が取れる能力があるからという理由で勝手にやっているわけではなく、ちゃんと閻魔様(のうちの幻想郷担当)から依頼されてのことらしい。 Yuyuko Saigyouji is the final boss of "Perfect Cherry Blossom". She ordered her gardener Youmu to gather spring from Gensokyo, setting off what came to be known as the "Spring Snow Incident". However, she was punished by a shrine maiden who followed the trail of the stolen spring. Her personality is extraordinarily carefree, and she is always playing dumb. Despite the fact that, unlike phantoms, ghosts are incredibly dangerous beings, she's quite friendly towards humans. However, ultimately her playing dumb is just an act and she possesses both a sharp mind and a keen eye. Her servant Youmu still has quite a ways to go before she'd ever be able to guess what she's thinking. She normally resides in Hakugyokurou, a huge mansion in the Netherworld. Her job is to manage the phantoms waiting to either pass on or reincarnate. Incidentally, she didn't just arbitrarily decide to take over because her power was suited for it: apparently she was formally given the role by the Yama (the one in charge of Gensokyo).
ちなみに「華胥」には理想郷の意味と昼寝の意味とがあるが、幽々子を見ていると両方の意味がありそうな気になってくる。 Incidentally, "Dreamland" can mean either an ideal world or simply nodding off to sleep. When you look at Yuyuko, you get the feeling that both meanings apply.
幽霊と亡霊 Phantoms and Ghosts
ここで東方Projectにおける幽霊と亡霊の違いについて解説しておかねばならない。幽霊とは、動物や植物の気質、すなわちそれらに固有の心理的・生理的な素質そのものの正体とされている。妖精が自然の具現であるのに対して、気質の具現である幽霊、と言えばわかりやすいだろうか。幽霊は人間からも人間以外からも生まれるし、生まれついての幽霊という存在もありうる。それに対して亡霊は死者そのものの具現である。ややこしいな。ただ影響については分かりやすく、幽霊は周囲のものの気質を幽霊のそれに近づける。例えば陽気な幽霊が近くにいれば、根暗な人間も陽気になる。一方、亡霊の主な影響は直接的な死そのもので、周囲の人間をいつのまにか死に誘ってしまう。ただ、幽々子の場合は亡霊になる以前から、死を操る程度の能力を身に着けていたらしい。 Before we continue, we need to establish the differences between phantoms and ghosts in the setting of the Touhou Project. Phantoms are the dispositions of plants and animals; in other words the true nature of the physical and mental characteristics inherent in those beings. Perhaps it would be easier to understand by comparing them to fairies. Just as fairies are the embodiment of nature, phantoms are the embodiment of disposition. Phantoms can be born from both humans and non-humans, and some beings are even born as phantoms. In contrast, ghosts are an incarnation of the dead person themselves. It's quite confusing, isn't it? However, when it comes to what they do it's relatively simple. Phantoms bring the disposition of everything around them closer to their own. For example, by getting close to a cheerful phantom, even a gloomy human would become cheerful. On the other hand, ghosts simply cause everything around to die: any human nearby would be drawn to their death. Although in Yuyuko's case, she seemed to have the power to manipulate death even before she became a ghost.
さらに余談ではあるが、死後地獄に落とされた者の魂は怨霊となる。怨霊は欲望や穢れにまみれており、地獄の釜で溶かすと金や水銀、砒素などが抽出される。また怨霊は人間の精神を蝕み、影響を受けた人間は欲望と怠惰にまみれ、死後地獄に落ちて新たな怨霊となるのである。こわいこわい。 This is even more of a tangent, but the souls of humans who fall to hell after death become vengeful spirits. Vengeful spirits are tainted with greed and impurity, and are melted down in the cauldrons of hell to extract gold, mercury, arsenic, and other heavy metals. Furthermore, when a vengeful spirit worms its way into a human mind, it taints that human with greed and laziness, causing them to fall to hell after death and become a new vengeful spirit. Scary stuff.
妖怪桜の封印 The Seal of the Youkai Cherry Blossom
静謐だが四季がはっきり存在している冥界で、いつまでも咲かない白玉楼の妖怪桜「西行妖」。それに関する文献をふとした折に読み、幽々子が興味本位で考えを実行に移したことで春雪異変は起こった。桜の根元には何者かが封印されていて、花が咲けば封印が解かれるのではないか、そして何者かが復活するのではないか、と。だが、実際には「桜が封印している」のではなく「根元に埋まった何かが桜を封印」しているので、桜を咲かせて封印を解いたところでどうにもならない(※いろいろと不味いことにはなる)。 Even the tranquil Netherworld is affected by the four seasons, but there exists a cherry tree in Hakugyokurou that will never bloom, the "Saigyou Ayakashi". Furthermore, the documents pertaining to it were read on a whim by Yuyuko. When her idle curiosity became a concrete plan, that was the start of the Spring Snow Incident. "If there's someone sealed beneath the roots of the cherry blossom, wouldn't the seal break when the flowers bloom? And if I break the seal, wouldn't that person be revived?" However, in actuality it's not that "the tree is sealed" but rather that "the person beneath the tree is sealing it" so her plan could never have worked anyway (*although it would have all sorts of unpleasant effects).
Comment from ZUN Comment from ZUN
人間と幽霊のハーフっていう設定はすごく好きなんです。でも、妖怪や悪魔とのハーフは沢山ありますけど、この設定はいまだに他で聞かないと思うんですが、どうでしょう? 実際は昔からあるシンプルな発想だけど、時代が進むにつれて幽霊や死者がどういうものかという定義がはっきりしていってしまうと、付けにくい設定になりますよね。最近では幽霊には実体が無い、という話が普通になってきているかもしれないですが、幽々子は実態をもった幽霊みたいなものですからね。いつから幽霊に足が無いと思っていた? I've always loved the idea of a half-human, half-phantom. But while half-youkai and half-demons are everywhere, even now I've never heard of anyone else using this idea. What's up with that? Actually, I've had this basic idea for a long time now, but as time marches on our collective concept of what exactly a ghost or phantom is has become much clearer, and now it's a tough sell. Maybe it's become normal to treat ghosts as incorporeal these days, but Yuyuko is like a ghost with a body. When did we start thinking of ghosts as legless anyway?