Tsukiyasha 4 – Joujou Gento
CV: Toriumi Kousuke
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You weren’t in your room… Why did you come out to the mountain in the dark?
Without carrying a lamp? If you want to think, then do it in your room.
There’s going to be a snowstorm soon. Go back to the mansion.
Hmm? Why did you look down all of a sudden?
It’s no good apologising for what happened this evening.
It was also my fault for not telling you anything. I should have told you about the great divide between humans and yasha much sooner.
I’ll tell the other yasha everything in the morning and come up with a plan to begin the war sooner. There’s nothing for you to do. Stay in the mansion and behave yourself.
The wind has gotten stronger. Let’s go back now.
What? What exactly have I misunderstood?
Ah… I certainly did say that I wanted to protect the yasha instead of killing humans. But it’s true that I despise humans. You’re not misunderstanding anything. I didn’t hesitate for a moment when I killed those men earlier.
Killing people because I want to protect the yasha makes me less of a bad person? What a simple way of thinking.
Let me tell you this. From the beginning, there hasn’t been any justice or evil. Yasha drink the blood of humans in order to survive. It’s only natural for humans to fear that, despise the yasha and try to kill them.
But the yasha have to fight back in order to keep on living. Humans and yasha are destined to kill each other.
No matter how unfortunate you think it is, this won’t change for hundreds or even thousands of years. It’s nothing that can be solved now.
Do you still want to say something?
So that’s what it is?
Right… When I was a child, I didn’t hate humans like I do now. Back then, quite a few of my friends were human. I think the villagers loved my parents too. However, when the shogunate came to the village after receiving a secret report and accused us of being yasha, no one tried to save my parents. No matter how much they had promised to trust us, it was all meaningless.
Humans and yasha definitely cannot get along with each other.
Humans pretend to be kind, but in the end, they only care about protecting themselves.
It’s as you say. It’s true that no one could have defied the shogunate, but I think humans who let friends that have lived with them get killed for that reason are worthless. I don’t want to feel like that again.
It’s started to snow, has it?
Come on, let’s go.
We’ll be in trouble if we don’t get back to the mansion before the snowstorm starts.
You came out wearing those thin clothes? How ridiculous.
You don’t know what an unforgiving place this snowy mountain is.
What were you going to do if I didn’t come and look for you?
I’d be in trouble if you froze to death. Don’t do anything ridiculous like that again.
I’m fine. I’ve been drinking your blood often recently. It seems that my strength as a yasha is greater than before. I don’t feel the cold so much now. I probably won’t get any foolish illnesses like a cold again.
The wind has become a lot stronger. Walk right behind me. If you slip…
Damn it! The lamp went out?
Hey. Hurry up and come over here. Otherwise…
I just told you…
Hey. Are you alright?
Where are you? It’s too dark to see anything.
Where are you? Call out more loudly.
So this is where you were. Are you hurt?
I don’t know. I can’t tell where we are without the lamp.
Anyway, we’ll keep moving, even if it means feeling our way with our hands.
We really will freeze to death if we stay here.
We won’t be able to get back to the mansion if we can’t see where we’re going.
We have no choice but to spend the night here.
Yes, keep on apologising. No matter how much you apologise, it won’t be enough.
My goodness. You’re a genius when it comes to causing trouble.
If you’re aware of it, then change the way you think. My strength won’t last if things like this keep on happening to me.
Your voice is trembling. Are you feeling that cold?
Come here. You shouldn’t feel the cold so much if I hold you like this.
Your hands are as cold as ice. Are you alright?
I can’t put up with this silence in the middle of the darkness. There’s still a long way to go until morning. Talk about something. If there’s something you want to ask me, then that’d be fine.
What? The other yasha, hmm?
That’s right. You should probably know something about them.
Kirinosuke was a Koga  ninja. Aside from ninjutsu, he is also good at making medicines. He knows a lot about the workings of the human body.
Shirou  was travelling throughout the whole country on a pilgrimage to spread the knowledge of Christianity. Because of that, he has an extraordinary knowledge of many different things.
Reiga is Ainu , so he is familiar with Hokkaido. When I arrived at the Reimeikan after the Battle of Hakodate, he was already living there.
Misao was a police officer working for the government, so he knows human society well.
Hayato is well informed about the underworld of human society.
Yasha probably all look the same to humans, but they are just as unique as humans.
No, I don’t particularly like them. It’s just your imagination.
We’re not what you would call “good friends”. I can trust them, but we don’t get too involved with each other.
What is it?
What? Why are you asking the reason?
I’m holding you like this because I’d be in trouble if you died.
What other reason could there be?
No. I’m not doing it to protect you. I’m doing it to protect the yasha.
You didn’t like the answer I just gave you?
Then what was the answer you were expecting from me?
Did you want me to tell you that I was keeping you alive for a more personal reason?
Don’t depend on me. Why do humans always cling to someone else?
At the very least, you shouldn’t expect that from a yasha like me.
I don’t have any special feelings towards a human like you.
What is it?
Your ice cold hands reached around my back. Then you held me as tightly as you could. Inside the deep darkness, all I could hear was the sound of your heartbeat. For a while, your words came out little by little.
“I’m trying to understand what you think of me. However, I can’t consider you as being distant from me just because we’re from different races.”
As I listened quietly, your feelings became greater.
You then called out to me in a tearful voice.
“When my parents died and I came to Hokkaido, I thought my sorrow would break me. But since coming to the Reimeikan, I’d completely forgotten about it. I think that was because I’ve always been by your side. When going to town. When having dinner. Before going to sleep at night. No matter what the reason you stayed by my side was, I’d forgotten that I was alone because you were there.”
So what about it? You understand too, don’t you?
I had to stay by your side for the sake of the yasha. What’s so wrong with you being lonely?
Humans and yasha can survive alone. I’ve lived alone since my parents died.
I’m not asking for anything from anyone. I just want to protect the yasha in Japan as it is the duty that comes with being born into the Joujou family. That’s the only thing I want.
What is it?
I can’t see the expression on your face in the dark. So how did I know you were looking at me so intently?
Your straightforward gaze went right through me. I wonder where that strength comes from.
You said “If you’ve forgotten your emotions, then all you have to do is get them back. I don’t expect you to trust humans again right away. But if yasha and humans can talk to each other, then there must be a way to compromise. So I think you and I just have to get to know each other better. So will you please trust me? I promise that I’ll never betray you, no matter what happens.”
“I promise that I’ll never betray you.”
I felt as if I’d heard those words somewhere before and remembered them as I absent-mindedly stared at the darkness. Those were the words my mother said to my father a long time ago.
That’s right. My mother never betrayed my father. The feelings that had been imprisoned in my memories began to release themselves.
Yes… I was always looking at them from behind and thinking that I wanted to be like them one day.
When I was younger, I wished for that deep inside my heart.
Trust you, hmm? It’s easy enough for you to say that.
Tell me. How are you going to prove that you won’t betray me?
You’ll always stay by my side?
Ah… I certainly did say I had no plans of letting you escape. But do you know how hard it will be for you to do as you say?
If I am hunted down, then you’ll end up getting caught too. As long as you stay by my side, you’ll be in danger for the rest of your life.
You’re trying to say that you’ll never leave my side from now on, no matter what happens?
Don’t agree so easily. I’m sorry, but I cannot return the feelings that you want. Making that kind of promise won’t be any good for you.
What? Talking together often doesn’t necessarily mean that feelings will develop. How can you always think of such positive things? Even if they do, what will you want after that?
A world where yasha and humans can live together? Are you an idiot? Do you really think you can create a world like that?
Where does all that confidence come from?
Living together, hmm…
Fine, I’ll try to trust you for once. Don’t forget the words you just said though. Use your life to prove that you won’t betray me. Then I might feel something for you.
 Koga is an ancient school of ninjutsu (a type of martial art practised by ninja) which is said to have existed since the 1500s.
 In Japanese history, Amakusa Shirou was a Catholic who led an uprising against the shogunate.
 The Ainu are indigenous people of Japan who were historically resident in Hokkaido.
Hey. How long are you going to sleep for? Wake up now.
You’ve been asleep for a whole day since we returned to the mansion. You really do sleep a lot.
You don’t even know where you are right now?
You’re in my room, of course. You’ve come here plenty of times before.
Never mind that. Eat this.
Don’t seem so surprised. As you can see, I’ve made some sukiyaki. Hurry up and eat it.
Why do you look so confused?
It’s especially important to eat when you don’t have an appetite.
I put in green onions because you like them so much. Your body should warm up a little if you eat this.
You’re no good at waking up.
Open your mouth. I’m going to feed you.
What? You’re so fussy.
There you go. Eat it.
I made it. Of course it’s good.
Eat the rest by yourself.
Hey. Show me your forehead.
I’ll check your temperature.
Hmm… It’s better than I expected it to be.
So it shouldn’t matter if I treat you a little roughly.
Hayato taught me that the other day. He called it “dekopin” . It’s pretty lethal, isn’t it?
You’re lucky that was all you got. I wanted to give you a few more.
It would’ve been easy since you were fast asleep. Just who do you think waited until morning and then carried your heavy body all the way here?
Listen carefully. Don’t do anything foolish like going into the mountains on the day of a snowstorm again. If you can’t see what the weather is going to be like, then don’t go outside at night. If you’re going out, then tell me first and bring a lamp or something with you. You should watch your step from now on too. You keep falling down the slopes because you don’t do that. You don’t even realise how clumsy and weak you are anyway!
You should know yourself before you try to do something. Try and put yourself in the shoes of the person who’s always rescuing you. That’s all.
Why are you laughing? You should be feeling sorry. Are you even sorry at all?
This is the first time I’ve cooked something for a human. It felt better than I thought it would. I hope that I seem to feel something for you now.
Do you remember what I talked about yesterday?
I tried to understand your feelings. I certainly was prejudiced against humans and didn’t try to understand their feelings. Of course, I’m not thinking about getting to know all human beings. But now I think that I could get to know you, the person who is by my side.
If you’re that persistent, then I can try to compromise with you a little.
Hmm? You still haven’t had enough sleep?
I see. You really do like sleeping.
Never mind. Just go to sleep and get your strength back.
Hey. Make some space next to you. I want to sleep for a while too.
Of course I am. This is my room.
Be quiet. I’m in a better mood than I usually am.
This is unusual for me. Don’t ruin my good mood by saying no.
You’re too far away.
It doesn’t matter if I hold you, does it? We were like this all last night. You were as cold as ice back then, but now I can feel your warmth.
It’s strange. When I’m like this, I don’t feel like drinking your blood at all. Lying here like this feels much better.
That’s right. It’s not just warm, it feels hot. It’s not so bad though.
Now that I’m lying down, I feel tired. I couldn’t let myself fall asleep in the middle of that cold weather, you see. It’s your fault that I didn’t get enough sleep.
Don’t make me worry too much again.
No… You don’t have to apologise anymore. I already gave you a dekopin too, you see. I won’t as you to apologise again.
 Dekopin refers to flicking someone’s forehead with the tip of your finger.
I heard the wolves howling just now… It seems like something has happened.
I see. So the Meiji government is already here? This is sooner than I thought it’d be.
I’m surprised you’re here. I see you’ve got enough determination to climb this snowy mountain in middle of the night.
However, I cannot let you get near the Reimeikan. There’s something I have to protect. I’m going to get rid of you right here!
So the government’s dogs are all small fry. You shouldn’t think that’ll be enough strength to beat the yasha!
Just how many of them are hiding here?
So that’s all of them?
Why’d you leave the mansion? Don’t come over here!
Is this really the time to worry about me? The government are coming to hunt down the yasha. If you get discovered now, then they’ll come after you too!
It’s dangerous right now, so go back to the mansion quickly! Otherwise…
Just stay back…
My chest… I got hit in the wrong place again… If only I’d just been hit on my arm instead.
Why are you holding out your arm?
Ah… For me to drink your blood?
If I had been a pure yasha, then I would have recovered a little more.
Come to think of it… There’s something I’ve been keeping from you all this time…
I haven’t told any of the other yasha about it either.
I’ve always said that I hated humans, but there is human blood running through my veins too.
I’m a child of two different races. My mother was human and my father was a yasha.
My parents lived among humans before because my mother was human. It should have only been my father who was hunted down. However, my mother was also killed as a punishment for living with a yasha.
The reason I caught a cold, ate the same food as humans and why it is meaningless for me to drink your blood is because I’m half-human.
So it doesn’t matter anymore. I probably won’t get better, even if I drink your blood. I always hated myself for being incomplete. So I abandoned the human side that I hated and decided to live as a yasha.
However, it’s not so easy after all.
This reminds me that I’m human.
When we went to the town together and we saw the child of a Japanese person and a foreigner, you said that child might become a bridge between Japan and other countries.
To tell the truth, there was a time during my childhood when I dreamt of that too. That’s because I was a child who didn’t have a desire for blood. I didn’t know anything about how difficult things were.
I remembered that dream because of what you said to me. I can’t do anything now though.
No, it’s already too late. I’m probably going to fall into a long sleep now.
Everything will be over. I wasn’t able to do anything in the end.
Don’t say such stupid things. It might have some effect if I drink more blood, but I could end up killing you if I do that.
If that happens, then the future of the yasha will be even more uncertain.
I can’t kill you here. I’m the only one who should die.
I’m not sure… It happened in an instant, so I don’t really remember it.
However… At that moment, I probably would have protected you whether you were Himiko’s descendant or not.
At the very end, I was able to feel something for humans again, just like I did in the past. That’s been enough salvation for me. I’m glad I met a human like you again.
Small flakes of snow fell from the sky. Your face, which I saw directly above me, had faded into the darkness and couldn’t be seen clearly. Drops of water fell onto my face. I hoped that cold sensation was snow. I wonder why it is that I don’t want to see your tears anymore.
Amidst the spreading silence, I faintly heard your voice.
“Even if I keep on living, that won’t bring an end to the fight between humans and yasha. So you shouldn’t die. I’m sure you’re the only one who can change this world. Please drink more of my blood. The two of us might be saved.”
I wonder if this world really will change if I survive.
A world where humans and yasha can live together. There is almost no possibility of that happening. However, as you say, it’s a paradise that only I can create. I’ve been made to realise that. If I still have time, then would I be allowed to count on that small wish?
You always tell me such honest things.
You say things that are simple, yet puzzling. However… That might be why I have the impression that I can make my dream come true.
Will you…give me some blood?
Tell me right away if it starts to hurt. I don’t want to lose you.
The blood from your lips tastes sweeter than any of your other blood. This is the first time I’ve desired someone else’s blood like this. I don’t think I would’ve felt this way if it hadn’t been you.
It’s strange. Even though I never cared about you at all…
Your lips… Your neck… Your small ears…
I wish I could keep them all to myself. You’re so dear to me that I can’t bear it.
This is the first time I’ve heard your voice sound so beautiful… How do you make me feel like this? Although I thought I’d be able to live alone forever… Now I can’t bear the thought of losing you.
Hey. Are you alright?
Your strength is at its limit. I really shouldn’t go any further…
How can you sacrifice yourself like this? You must know that drinking any more blood from you would be dangerous. So why don’t you try and stop me?
You don’t have to say anything else. The feelings you tried to tell me are probably the same ones that are flowing through me.
If I say them out loud, I’ll feel as if I’ve been betrayed by you again if you really do die.
I told you to stay by my side, didn’t I? So don’t die like this.
That’s right. I can’t die until I hear those words myself.
The both of us, hmm? We certainly will say those words to each other.
I’m going to believe in you. So you believe in me too.
I hope the both of us will wake up.
If we do, then I’ll feel as if I can regain a little of my happiness.
Ah, it’s you. How are you feeling?
I see. I’m glad to hear that.
Me? My wound still hurts a little.
It should heal soon though. There’s no need to worry.
What is it?
No… The police officers won’t come to hunt for yasha at the Reimeikan again.
After we lost consciousness, Kirinosuke realised what was happening and made some fake bite marks on my neck.
Then he pretended to be a human when the other officers turned up and told them everyone lying there had fallen victim to the yasha. So they won’t attack this place again. Don’t worry.
By the way, did you want something?
Ah… You’re right. There wasn’t any food left when I looked in the kitchen earlier.
We’ll have to do something then. Shall we go into the town?
I’ll take you there, so get ready quickly.
No, I’ll come too. There’s something I want to see.
Ah… We need to buy some food for the goldfish too. There’s one more fish now, so we need more food than before.
Hmm… That’s right. I didn’t tell you before. When I was returning home after seeing the doctor, the goldfish seller was there again, so I bought another one.
There’s no particular meaning to it. Keeping one fish in the bowl on its own just seemed a little dull. Two goldfish are better than one, aren’t they?
Humans and yasha are the same. It’s easy for them to live alone. But since I began spending time with you, I realised that was something lonely. It’s happier to live with someone else supporting you. Aren’t goldfish the same?
You’re smiling so much that it’s almost annoying. Your cheeks look like steamed buns.
You’ve got so many different expressions. I never get tired of seeing them.
Come on. We’re going shopping, aren’t we? Let’s go before it gets dark.
It’s warm today. So spring is already here?
There’s something I want to tell you.
I’m not going to start a war now. I was always trying to make a paradise for the yasha, but now I’ve found a different paradise. It’s the world that you told me about, one where yasha and humans can live together. Becoming a bridge. An ideal that only I can achieve. Now I’m going to make an effort towards achieving that.
As you said, I’m going to start by getting to know other humans. So I want you to show me the human world. I’ll go down into the town and see many different places. Will you show me what humans feel and what their expressions are like?
I’m counting on you.
Come on, take my hand. Don’t let go of my hand, not even when we go into the town. It worries me that you might disappear somewhere as soon as I take my eyes off you.
No, that’s no good. You’re going to stay by my side the whole time.
Ah. There’s one more thing. Tell me what you were going to say that night.
Don’t be embarrassed. What did you want to say about me?
Yes. I feel the same way too.
I love you.