NOTEThe previous chapter is the Prologue, which makes this month's chapter, Chapter 1. To be specific, it's Chapter 1 of the first arc. So, it's not a repeat of the previous translation. ^^
(JUMP SQ 2008 #2)屍鬼 (Shi-ki)
Yuuki Natsuno Volume - Chapter 1Notes:
All the dates are accompanied by a "rokuyo" which notes the lucky and unlucky days in the Japanese calendar. There's no one-word translation for most of these so I decided to leave them in Japanese with a note to explain what it means. You can read up about them here
Overlay text: The truth about death...
[16th August, Tuesday, Butsumetsu]
[* T/N: 仏滅 (Butsumetsu) means unlucky all day.]
Yuuki Natsuno Volume – Chapter 1
[* T/N: An interesting pun. The words used for "one" in the chapter number has the same reading as "one" but mean "the blood left behind after death".]
Overlay text: If I were an honest doctor, would I have returned to this countryside?
Original work / Ono Fuyumi
Manga / Fujisaki Ryuu
Adapted from "Shiki" published by Shinchou Bunko Kan
Kaori: Everything's put in order.
Postcard (on panel 3): A late-summer greeting card for you.
Kaori: A late-summer greeting card?
Postcard (on panel 5): To Yuuki Natsuno
From Shimizu Megumi
Kaori: ...You must have re-written this over and over again, didn't you...
Megumi: Ah! What a cute postcard!!
I'm going to send this to Yuuki-kun!!
Megumi: Geh! I wrote "host" instead of "hot"!!
I'm not a hostess!!
(written text) I have to buy another one!
[* T/N: Original pun in Japanese was Megumi wrote "hot" (暑) wrongly as "station" (署, as in police station), because the two kanji are very similar. Then, she said, "I'm not a policeman!!"]
Megumi: Oh no! I've re-written so many pieces that it's already the time for the Bon festival!!
Late summer is almost over!!
Megumi: I…I finally managed to complete this...
Now, to send it…
SFX: thump thump
Megumi: I just can't do it~!!
There are times when we come together in a place without even knowing why.
It was dawn at the time. I couldn't stand it any more, so I walked straight to the national highway.
I'll follow this asphalt through the countryside, and leave the town and the village behind, to head for the bustling city.
Because this village is under siege by death.
Ritsuko: Tarou, wait!!
[Villager File No.19
Kunihiro Ritsuko, a nurse at Ozaki Hospital]
(Is he leaving-?)
Ritsuko: Kyaaaa! Tarou, please don't do that~!!!
Ritsuko: I'm so sorry, Natsuno. I just changed his collar but it's still too big, so he slipped out right away.
Ritsuko: How's your leg, Natsuno?
The one that was hurting when you were growing up.
Natsuno: Excuse me,
Please stop that.
Natsuno: Stop calling me by my first name.
Ritsuko: Oh... You don't like your name?
Natsuno: Because it sounds like a girl's.
Ritsuko: I think it's a really nice and refreshing name, though.
Did your mother give it to you?
Natsuno: It was my father.
Something like, it was the name of a noble family long ago.
Ritsuko: I see.
Your father is quite the romantic.
Natsuno: --If he weren't, we wouldn't have moved to a place like this.
Natusno's father: It feels like an ideal countryside.
Not one thing in it can be considered young.
It has a population of merely 1300. A village that lives to grow fir trees and make these wooden grave tablets.
[* T/N: The name of the village, Sotoba, literally means an "outside place". However, in Japanese, the wooden grave tablets are also called 'sotoba' (different kanji).]
--Because of that, it's surrounded by mountains of fir trees on three sides.
Because they were considered trees for the dead, the village became isolated from the outside world.
The village was surrounded by these trees because of death...
... That's what novelists used to write, and also what the young master of the temple wrote in an essay about the village that was published in a magazine.
Natsuno's father: It'll be a refreshing change to move to that terribly boring village, right?
So, let's get married!!
It's really a countryside with nothing.
Natsuno: --That's not really what I meant though...
Ritsuko: Ahahaha. It's all right. It's the truth, after all!
Old man: Oh? Ritsu-chan, good morning.
Ritsuko: Ah! Mr. Tatsu and Mr. Oitarou, good morning~!!
[Villager File No. 20
Lower Sotoba, Takemura Stationery Store, Store Owner]
[Villager File No. 21
Satou Oitarou, Takemura Stationery Store Frequenter, Carpenter]
Natsuno: I was born and bred in the city. Because of that, the inconveniences of this village, and the people of this village...
--Well, everyone is watching and reporting on one another, like one big conspiracy. I can't handle this kind of village mob mentality.
Ritsuko: Especially because your family came from the city, and you're outsiders.
Not that long ago, you were the talk of the village.
(written words) That's how it is in the countryside. Ahaha.
Natsuno: Ah, I need to make a turn here.
I have to get to Shimizu Megumi's funeral.
Ritsuko: The doctor is taking this really hard.
Ritsuko: See, before she died, Megumi-chan had collapsed in the mountains where she was found, right?
At the time, the doctor diagnosed it as a mere case of anemia, but...
Ritsuko: --Yet, she died.
Megumi's father: Why did Megumi die!?
[Villager File No. 22 & 23
Shimizu Takeo & Hiroko]
Megumi's father: Does a person die from a mere case of anemia!?
I won't know the details without a thorough investigation...
Ozaki: It'd presented itself as a mere case of anemia, but even assuming that that's not all it was, I thought we'd have more than enough time to wait for the results of the blood test.
The reality here is a shock to me, more than anyone else.
How about it?
Ozaki: If possible, I hope you'll let me perform an autopsy.
I would very much like to determine the real cause of death...
Megumi's father: Are you kidding me!!!
Megumi's mother: Dear...
Megumi's father: --No, I'm sorry...
Ozaki: ...You'd like to punch me. I understand how you feel, Shimizu-san...
Megumi's father: No... But, you cannot have the autopsy.
She's just a little girl.
Please, I've had enough already...
Ozaki: --The time of death is 2 a.m. in the morning.
Cause of death is acute heart failure...
Natsuno: Acute heart failure?
Ritsuko: When the cause of death is unknown, it's generally stated as acute something or another failure to close the case.
I know a lot about being a doctor, you know! But, don't tell anyone!
Natsuno: ...Nurse, don't you ever feel like leaving the village?
The world outside has a shortage of nurses so you wouldn't have problems finding a job.
Leave all the people you've known since you were little, and this tiny village that you've become attached to?
You mean, to move to a strange town where you'd have to rely on people who would never comprehend the loneliness of leaving all that?
Ritsuko: No, never.
Ritsuko: My home consists of my mother, my younger sister and myself. All three of us depend on me! What'll happen if I leave?
And, the house is getting really old so they've been nagging me to rebuild it.
Ritsuko: Our new house will be made of fir wood, I think!
- This one was really sudden...
What should I do with this postcard?
Kaori: He-he really came!!
It's wonderful, isn't it, Megumi-chan!!!
(written text) Megumi-chan~~ Uwaaaaaaaaa
Box: What's with this girl?
It looks like she started crying when she saw me...
She's coming at me!!
Kaori: Thank you very much!!!
Kaori: I'm Megumi-chan's best friend. We grew up together. My name is Tanaka Kaori!
Uhm... you're Yuuki Natsuno, right!?
Kaori: Uhm... uhm... would you please accept something Megumi-chan left behind?
It's just a little thing, but...
Natsuno: I can't.
Natsuno: I'm only here because our parents are colleagues, and they brought me along!
I'm not particularly close to Shimizu so there's no reason for me to accept anything from her!!
Natsuno: Well then, it's really hot so I'm going home.
Kaori: Eh, wait...
Megumi-chan's funeral procession is starting soon...
Natsuno: I'm not obliged to attend the burial either.
- Shimizu is really pitiful too.
- Why was it so sudden, anyway...
- I had a relative whose son died long ago.
- Even children can die.
- --But, what happened to her during the time she was missing?
- Well, she's such a flippant child anyway, could it be...
Even though Megumi-chan is already dead... Even though she's no longer with us... Even though she's really, really pitiful...
Even though everyone should be mourning her death a little more...
They're so cruel, Megumi-chan.
How could they treat you like that...
The village still has a custom of burying the dead.
Kaori: (This is scary...)
Kaori: (It's like a hole that's sucking Megumi-chan in...)
(I feel like it's sucking me inside too...)
It's sucking me in...
There are countless numbers of graves in the fir tree forests that surround the village. Up till today, they have swallowed up so many of the dead.
That's the reason why the village has a long-held legend of the "rising".
That is, the dead would rise from the ground in the night and visit children who have been naughty and punish them...
Kaori: Auntie! Uncle!
It's almost Megumi-chan's birthday, so I'd bought this present for her.
Can I bury this together with her?
Megumi's father: Eh...
Kaori's mother: Goodness, Kaori!!
How could you suggest that...!!!
(writing below panel) ^ mother
Muroi: That's not a bad idea, is it?
Kaori: Master priest!!!
Muroi: You're her friend, aren't you?
Please put it in. I'm sure Megumi-chan will be happy too.
The temple, Kanemasa, and Ozaki.
These three positions were like the pillars which bound and protected Sotoba Village.
(writing below panel) ^ The old Kanemasa mansion
Also, when you look at the map, sandwiched right between the temple and Ozaki is a large sawmill called the Maruyasu Sawmill.
[17th August, Wednesday, Taian]
[* T/N: 大安 (Taian) means a day of great peace, most lucky day]
--This time, it's Mr. Giichi from Maruyasu?
- He was already bedridden with Parkinson's disease... I knew he didn't have long to go.
[Maruyasu Sawmill, Head Family, Yasumori mansion]
- The whole family had gathered for the Bon Festival, but now, it seems to have been for Grandpa Giichi's death.
[Villager File No. 24~27
Yasumori Family, Head Family
[26 Kazunari] [27 Natsuko] [24 Kazuya] [25 Junko]
[Villager File No. 28~32
Yasumori Family, Branch Family
[31 Nao] [32 Susumu] [30 Mikiyasu] [29 Setsuko] [28 Tokujirou]
[Villager File No. 33
- He shouldn't have any regrets, I suppose.
Mutou: This is the report of Megumi-chan's test that you asked for!
Thanks for the trouble, Mutou!
[Mutou (No. 16) Head of Medical Center]
Mutou: Well? It was anemia after all, right?
Ozaki: The report says anemia.
But, this anemia... It's not iron deficiency anemia.
Ozaki: My diagnosis was wrong.
Mutou: How could that be!!
Ozaki: There's no reason for you two to work up such a fuss.
Ozaki: There are three main types of anemia:
normocytic anemia, microcytic anemia, and macrocytic anemia.
Ozaki: I thought Megumi-chan had iron deficiency anemia, which is common among girls her age...
That is, I thought it was microcytic anemia.
Ozaki: According to the complete blood count in the test report, and the concentration of hemoglobin which is roughly calculated from the hematocrit value…
The red blood cell count was multiplying too.
So, it was normocytic anemia, after all.
Megumi-chan's cause of death could be summarized as...?
Ozaki: I don't know.
Ozaki: This usually results from hemorrhage, hemolysis or a secondary anemia such as aplastic anemia.
But, in Megumi-chan's case, she didn't have any external injuries apart from scratches and insect bites, nor did she have any major internal bleeding.
Ozaki: --Yet, there was something physically wrong with her, more than just her sudden death.
At first glance, I could tell there was a serious problem, but not where. That was what developed into anemia.
Even if there were something there other than the anemia, the cure wouldn't have been available in time.
An autopsy would have cleared it up.
Mutou: A person's lifespan...
...Is fixed anyway, huh.
[21st August, Sunday, Senbu
Upper Sotoba, Gotouda Home]
[* T/N: 先負 (Senbu) means bad luck in the morning, good luck in the afternoon]
- Madam Fuki~
Tae: Madam Fuji, it's Tae~
I brought you some food~
Tae: You mentioned you weren't feeling well. How are you now~?
[Yano Tae (No.12)]
Tae: I'm coming inside.
Tae: Madam Fuki~
[Villager File No.34
Early morning calls again?
I have a bad feeling about this.
Ozaki: Yes, this is Ozaki.
Tae: It's Madam Fuki.
She's been looking sluggish since Thursday, so I was concerned and even visited her yesterday.
Tae: She was very depressed about her son, Shuuji, and her brother and sister-in-law dying one after another.
She looked very sleepy, and kept staring into space, so I thought it could have been the summer flu.
Tae: But, she looked a lot worse yesterday compared to Thursday.
Her fever rose about 8.5 degrees too.
Tae: I was very worried and said I could call the doctor here.
Tae: "Don't call the doctor," she said.
Tae: Even though she'd been staring into space all this time, she said that really distinctly.
Although I haven't heard that she hated the hospital or anything like that...
Ozaki: Did she cough?
Ozaki: Did she go to toilet?
Tae: Whenever I was here, she stayed in her bed.
Ozaki: Did she mention any pain or discomfort?
If she'd said anything like that, I'd have called the doctor here whether she liked it or not!!!
Tae: --Then, this morning, there was no reply when I called her, which is sort of cold, so I wondered if she was dead, but only because I was worried she was really dead, and then I thought maybe she's not dead, but I didn't know what to do, so anyway, I decided to give you a call...
Ozaki: She's passed away.
Now, it's Gotouda Fuki!!?
Mutou: Could it be due to the fierce heat...
The summer flu seems to be going around...
Mutou: Come to think of it, Ookawa Gigorou and Murasako Hidemasa who died at Yamairi, also died of the summer flu.
That's what I heard from Murasako Mieko when she came to collect her high blood pressure medicine.
The two of them didn't seem to have a fever though.
They're just suffering from the summer heat, I suppose... Just staring into space doing nothing.
Mutou: After that, she ended up like that...
(sign) Temple Office
Muroi: What is it, Mitsuo-san?
Mitsuo: It's a phone call from the village's manager!
Madam Gotouda Fuki just died from her illness!!
[Villager File No.35, Clerical Priest, Tsurumi]
[Villager File No.36, Clerical Priest, Ikebe]
Mitsuo: This year's summer is really harsh! This is going to continue!!
It's like the incident at the riverbank more than twenty years ago; it's going to be a year of many deaths!
[Villager File No.37 Tadokoro Mitsuo, in charge of temple routine tasks]
Ikebe: There was such a thing before!?
Muroi: Excuse me. I have to go out for a while. Please look after things here.
I just remembered I have something to discuss with Ozaki.
(sign) Ozaki Hospital
Muroi: Sorry to bother you during your break, Toshio.
Ozaki: --No problem.
Ozaki: --So, what is it?
Muroi: During summer last year, 4 elderly folks passed away.
Ozaki: You sure are fully informed.
Muroi: I work in the temple, after all.
Muroi: Then, this year...
Muroi: Mr. Giichi.
Muroi: The 3 people at Yamairi.
Muroi: Mdm Fuki.
Muroi: In merely half a month, we've had 7 deaths.
It's too many.
Furthermore, Mr. Shuuji was only 37-years-old, and Megumi-chan was just about to turn 15. Much too young.
Muroi: What was the cause of Mdm Fuki's death?
Ozaki: Most likely, it was acute kidney failure.
Muroi: But the true cause of death?
Ozaki: I don't know.
Ozaki: Mr. Shuuji was also acute heart failure.
But, to tell you the truth, the cause of death is unknown.
Mr. Gigorou was the same.
Mr. Hidemasa and Mdm Mieko, too.
Megumi-chan, Mdm Fuki...
The only one who I have no doubts about is Mr. Giichi.
Muroi: It's not the plague, is it?
[23rd August, Tuesday, Taian]
(sign) Yuuki, Koide
[* T/N: 大安 (Taian) means a day of great peace, most lucky day]
Shimizu used to hide behind the raspberry bushes, snuggled up against the fir tree, and watched me through this window...
Natsuno: Oh, gimme a break.
Of course that would creep me out.
She did all that so that she could fully enjoy her innocent unrequited love like a hero.
Then, someday, somehow, I would notice her and return her feelings... That's what she'd been hoping for.
Everyone is the same in this village.
They want you to say this. They want you to do that. And, selfishly, they put you into certain roles.
The partner of the heroine in a school drama.
The partner of the ill-fated heroine who died too young.
The youth who came from the city with the attitude problem.
Natsuno: It's all a monkey show.
What was that...?
Was someone watching me?
[24th August, Wednesday, Shakku, Ozaki Hospital]
[* T/N: 赤口 (Shakku) means bad luck all day, except at noon.]
Ozaki: Ahh—Hello, this is Ozaki...
Ozaki: What is it? About the matter I asked you to help me with?
[Villager File No.38 Ishida
Public Health Officer]
Ishida: It started with the 3 people in Yamairi... 1st August, Ookawa Gigorou and Murasako Hidemasa. 5th August, Murasako Mieko.
6th August, Gotouda Shuuji.
11th August, Hirosawa Takatoshi.
15th August, Shimizu Megumi.
17th August, Yasumori Giichi.
18th August, Oozuka Yasuyuki.
21st August, Gotouda Fuki.
23rd August, Shimizu Ryuuji.
Ozaki: There are people I don't know... The village is larger than I thought.
They died in the neighboring town, Mizobe's public hospital?
Ishida: That's way too many...
What on earth is going on...
Ritsuko: Doctor, the next patient is ready.
Ishida, let's continue this another day, at the temple...
Yasumori Nao. ...Eh? Nao, did you hurt yourself?
Nao: I feel sluggish...
My mother-in-law said I had to come to the hospital...
[25th August, Thursday, Senshou]
[* T/N: 先勝 (Senshou) means good luck in the morning, bad luck in the afternoon]
Why am I still keeping this window shut?
Someone is watching...!!!
Why does it feel like someone is still watching me---...
Shi-ki ---------- To be continued in Issue #03 (on sale 4th Feb)
PS. Many thanks to Snoopy and Wolfgang from SnoopyCool
for some translation help. :D Go check out the newly released chapter!