Shinsengumi Hiyokuroku Wasurenagusa 4 – Harada Sanosuke
CV: Tachibana Shinnosuke
July 1864. The Shinsengumi, who had defeated the radical Choshu members at the Ikedaya, immediately spread themselves throughout Kyoto in order to defeat the remaining lawless samurai who had escaped. All throughout the city, a clearing operation was carried out and Choshu members were to be killed without any question. With a spear in my hand, I led the tenth troop through the city. Once again, the city of Kyoto smells like blood tonight.
How pathetic. What was that scream for? Come on! Attack me!
That’s right. Fight back! Show me a really good time!
Let out an even uglier scream, struggle ungracefully and pathetically cling to life!
Don’t let your guard down. Otherwise everything you’ve done until now will just fade away in an instant! You’re scared, aren’t you?
What’s the matter? Are you already done?
Then die after your blood blooms into red flowers!
For the sake of peace. For the sake of the country. For the sake of the future. Now there are more men who wield their swords in the name of those things. There’s nothing more annoying than that. I have no interest in things like that. However, I actively tried silence those men. The blood that flowed from the men I stabbed with my spear was just like red flowers.
The dull landscape that was normally the faded colour of sand was dyed a brilliant red by the sprays of blood. I couldn’t stop myself from desiring the red flowers I could see when I killed someone. I’m sure that I’m only living for the sake of making these flowers bloom.
But flowers cannot bloom infinitely. A flower that has bloomed gradually fades and the sight before my eyes returns to its colourless state. The world is dull and full of meaningless things. I stood still as I considered the reason for my momentary excitement.
Now things are uninteresting once more.
I’m tired. It’s definitely morning now. I suppose that really was the last one. I was looking around, thinking that I’d be able to kill someone else, but it was a waste of time.
Hmm? Ah. What are you doing so early in the morning?
Ah… The other men have started coming back. So you’re going out early in order to greet them? You’re too obedient. Why didn’t you just pretend to be asleep?
Well… Even if the other men are taking towels, I don’t need one. I’m covered in so much blood, that I don’t think a towel would be any use. I’m going to take a bath, so leave me alone.
Hmm? So the bath is crowded because all the other men are using it? Well, they would have gotten sweaty after running around all night. In that case, come and call me when the bath is free. I’ll be in the garden.
Why? I thought I’d spend some time in the rain. It’ll be perfect for washing away the blood.
It won’t rain long enough for me to catch a cold. It’s definitely just a sudden shower. But if it doesn’t rain a little harder, it might not be enough to wash off the blood.
Well, I’ll wash off the rest in the bath, so it doesn’t really matter.
What do you mean it isn’t good for my health? That’s got nothing to do with you. It’s none of your business if I get wet in the rain and catch a cold, or if it gets worse and I end up dying. I won’t blame you either. I won’t end up haunting you, so why don’t you go away?
You’re still concerned, even though I’ve said it’s got nothing to do with you? What’s the meaning of that stupidity? You have such an annoying way of living.
Fine. I’ll take a towel. So I just have to wipe down my body, don’t I?
If you’ve got time to be heating water in a pot, then I’d rather you went and chased the men out of the bath.
Ah… But with all those men there, I wouldn’t be able to use the bath without you preparing a fresh bath. Does it take a long time?
I think I’ll wash it off in the rain after all. Then I’ll do the rest when I’m in the bath. That’s alright, isn’t it?
Washing the blood off in the rain is no good. Catching a cold is no good. Waiting here for the bath to be free is no good. Why are you saying everything is no good? Just when did I ask for your opinion? You’re just being a bother.
I didn’t say anything strange. It only sounds strange to you because our outlook on things is different.
Ah. It’s fine, as long as you understand.
Hmm… I see. It’s your job to work for the sake of the Shinsengumi, so looking after me is also your job. So doesn’t that make you a nosy person? That’s what you’re trying to say.
You’re quite stubborn. I’m obviously bothered by you, so why haven’t you given up?
Kondo-san has hired a troublesome person to be our maid.
Alright. You can heat the water in the kitchen and I’ll use that to wash myself. That’ll be enough, won’t it?
Hurry up and do it. Otherwise the rain will wash away all the blood.
Eh? Ah… The rain stopped.
Hmm? Ah, the hot water’s ready? Let me see.
This is one pot full? I’ll only be able to pour it over myself once.
Of course it’s not enough! Come on, look at my arms. The blood has started to dry in the places the rain didn’t touch. Pouring water over myself once won’t be enough to wash it off.
Are you an idiot? I said I’d wash it off in the rain because wiping myself was a bother.
You’ll do it? Hmm… Go on then.
Why are you panicking? You were the one who said you’d wipe it off.
You must really be an idiot if you couldn’t figure out that I’d be taking off my clothes. There’s no way you could wipe it all off if I kept my clothes on, could you?
Okay. I’ll leave the rest to you.
Now you’re just patting me. Put some more effort into wiping.
The rain didn’t wash the blood away at all.
Hmm? My hand? Here you go.
That’s good. I feel much better.
You want me to bend down?
Ah, so it got onto my neck too?
There you go.
Being wiped like this feels good. Maybe it was a good thing I gave into your persuasion.
Don’t just wipe almost everything. I want my whole body done.
Look, there’s still some left under my arms.
Hmm? The wound on my stomach?
Well… It draws people’s attention, but it doesn’t hurt anymore, so it’s not important.
That’s right. I think I’ve got more injuries compared to the other men.
Hmm? You’re paying more attention than I thought.
Despite how much you panicked when I took off my clothes… So you were actually interested.
Ah… That’s right. You certainly wouldn’t be able to wipe my body without looking. Then look as much as you like while you wipe my body.
Ah, wipe my shoulder too.
I’ve got a lot of scars, but it’s not as if they’re a record of my experience as a soldier. I always avoid attacks at the last minute when I fight. Most of the scars I’ve got are from the times when I couldn’t dodge the attacks well enough. So these are nothing more than scars that show when I almost died, but didn’t quite manage it. The injury on my stomach is one of those.
Well, aren’t most soldiers proud of their scars?
I’m not like that though. Unlike the other men, I’m not fighting for peace or my own ambitions, you see.
It’s because I like red flowers.
I’m going to ask a question too. What are you living for?
Your parents were killed in front of you, weren’t they? Aren’t you going to follow them?
Why are you still alive?
Because someone saved your life?
Hmm… Even if someone saved my life, I wouldn’t feel that way. So that’s another way of looking at it…
I can’t understand you living in this place full of men just because you want to repay your debt. You’ve narrowly escaped death, so wouldn’t you rather live a more unusual life?
Well, that’s got nothing to do with me though.
No idea. That’s actually what I’d like to know. How can you make sure everyday is an unusual one? This world is full of uninteresting things, but everyone looks like they’re enjoying themselves.
Hey, your hands have stopped moving. How long are you going to keep looking at my body?
Ah, what are you doing? It’s a long time since I’ve seen someone stumble over nothing. Why are you panicking so much?
It’s not as if I got hurt. There’s no need to apologise. But you haven’t wiped off all the blood, so heat up some fresh water. The water was getting dirty, so wasn’t it actually a good thing?
I don’t mind waiting, but make sure you wipe my body completely. Don’t look away either.
Hmm? Ah, it’s you.
Ah, I just finished training.
Oh? Why are you thanking me for my hard work? It’s not like I’ve been working that hard.
Isn’t that wrong too? It’s not as if I was having a hard time either.
Now you’re saying hello to me? Don’t you understand? There’s no need to greet me unless there’s something you particularly want from me.
Why? Isn’t greeting someone else just a waste of time?
Whoa… It’s started again. You’re going to tell me greetings are important, aren’t you? Okay, okay. I get it.
Hello. Are you satisfied now?
Hmm… Hey. Are you in love with me?
You’re not? Then this makes even less sense.
Why are you smiling so happily just because someone you don’t even love returned your greeting?
What? I didn’t understand, so say it again.
It feels good when someone returns your greeting?
I see. It looks like we have quite different ways of thinking.
I really can’t understand what you just said. I’ve never felt good greeting someone and I’ve never heard of that happening either. Aren’t you a strange person?
There’s no way I’d understand that feeling after greeting someone everyday. Don’t assume that would happen. Your life must be fun if all it takes to change your mood is a simple greeting. I can’t understand it, but I’m a little envious.
So why do I have to greet you too?
I won’t know unless I try, hmm? What a convenient thing to say.
Well, I might try and do it if I feel like it or I remember. I’m not going to make any promises though. Can I go now? It’s no good talking to you any longer.
See you later then?
Ah… So that’s a greeting too?
Okay, okay. See you later.
You’re a liar, aren’t you?
Well, you are. I tried greeting everyone and it didn’t feel good at all.
Rather than that, Nagakura thought I was strange and Heisuke was afraid. I shouldn’t have listened to you. Greeting people is meaningless.
You smiled again. What are you so happy about this time?
Is that all? Is the thought of me trying to greet someone something to be that happy about?
You really aren’t normal. You’re a fool.
Why are you happy about that? Even though I’m telling you that it wasn’t interesting at all.
What? I don’t think the outcome will be any different if I try a more friendly greeting. What are you talking about? What would be a friendly greeting anyway?
Ah… You and I are a man and a woman, so a more friendly greeting would be like this, I suppose?
Oh? Why aren’t you reacting?
Come on, I’m almost touching your lips. Aren’t you going to stop me?
Hmm… You started blushing right away.
You don’t have to be so surprised, do you? You’re not used to this, are you? Could it be that you’ve never kissed someone? Why don’t you try it sometime soon?
Ah… I should have kissed you earlier then. If I had kept going, then you might have got carried away and accepted it. That was unfortunate. Let me try again.
Alright. Don’t move. I’m going to kiss you.
You really are tense.
Alright, just a little more.
This feels really soft.
Hmm… You aren’t reacting at all.
Alright, I’m going to try this ear too.
Ah. Maybe it’s better to get your lips used to this, instead of your ears?
One more time. I’m going to make it a long kiss this time.
Open your mouth. I can’t get my tongue in, can I?
This is the first time I’ve seen someone react so little.
If you don’t reject me soon, then I won’t be able to stop.
The other men will see us here, so will you come to my room?
You finally moved. I thought you’d fallen unconscious, but I was wrong.
You’re so annoying. You didn’t even say anything to reject me, so why are you getting angry now?
I’m going to kiss you again.
You’re blushing even more. Did you remember the kiss we just had? If you want more, then I’ll give it to you.
Huh? Baked potato? What are you talking about? It’s too obvious that you’re trying to change the subject. That was far too sudden. Why don’t you try and do it a little better?
Ah, you’re going to burn those fallen leaves and bake potatoes? Hmm…
I’ve got time because my rounds aren’t until the evening, but I’m not planning on standing round a fire with you. Why don’t you ask someone else?
Freshly baked potato? Well, I suppose it does taste good.
But I’m surprised you want to invite me to have baked potatoes when I gave you a kiss you weren’t asking for.
Why didn’t you just have them after I’d gone?
Ah… You’re in a hurry because Kondo-san is looking forward to them.
Hmm… Well, I suppose I don’t mind having a baked potato. I’ll stay with you, so hurry up and light the fire. Where’s the flint?
You’re so careless.
I’ll go and get one, so you prepare the potatoes by putting them on sticks.
It’s so warm. Aren’t they ready yet?
They smell good. I’m hungry.
Aren’t these potatoes ready now?
What? Not yet?
Not really. It’s not that I like them… It’s just that the weather is cold.
I was just thinking that it’d be nice to eat them if they’re freshly baked.
I wouldn’t stay here if I hated baked potatoes. Why didn’t you think about that before saying anything?
You laughed again. I didn’t say anything funny though.
You laugh a lot, don’t you? Why is that?
You enjoy being with me? Are you serious about that?
Hmm… That’s the first time someone has said that to me.
You really are strange, aren’t you?
Me? Not at all. I’ve never felt like I’ve enjoyed myself with you. I think it’s a little less boring than usual, but it’s probably because you’re always saying something unpredictable. In other words, that means you’re quite an odd person.
You’re not angry? Hmm…
Most people get angry and say “I don’t want to hear that from you” when I call them odd.
It really is strange that you’re saying you don’t mind.
You should realise that you are strange. Otherwise you’ll get into trouble later on.
You’re laughing again. That’s enough.
Hmm? Is this already cooked?
I’ll take it then.
I know it’s hot. You don’t have to tell me everything.
Hey… Get me some water…
I’m fine now.
It was hotter than I thought it’d be. I was careless.
What’s so funny about someone getting their mouth burned?
I don’t want to hear that from you. Even other people think you look like the kind of person who can’t be left alone. You fall when there’s nothing there. You can’t even reject a kiss. You’re clumsy, careless and you let your guard down. You should worry about yourself instead of me.
I’ll be going now. Crouching down made my legs hurt. I’ll be taking this baked potato.
I’ll eat it when it cools down. Bye.
It’s so cold. I wonder whether Toshi-san is in his room. I’m going to tell him that I didn’t see anything unusual during my rounds…
Hmm? What are you doing over there? The snow hasn’t been swept away yet, so your legs must be cold. How about you get out of there before you slip and fall?
Oh? Is there something over there?
Ah… A nandina ? What about it?
Oh? You were so happy about finding it, that you wanted to show me and called me over?
There’s nothing unusual about a nandina, is there? Why did you get so happy about seeing something like that?
For starters, you wouldn’t go all the way to the corner of this garden unless you had a reason, would you?
Ah… So you can use its berries in medicine? In that case, someone like Yamazaki-san might be pleased. If you want someone to be happy with, shall I call him?
Oh? Is that so?
You’re always like that. What are you so happy about? I don’t understand at all.
Ah. Hmm. So that’s what it was. Because you saw something red amongst the white snow…
Well, I suppose that’s something to be happy about.
I’m not happy at all. It’s no good asking me to feel the same.
But there are times when I have a similar feeling… I’m sure it’s completely different from what you feel.
Anyway, wouldn’t it be better to leave here soon? Your clothes are soaking wet.
I knew it, I’m covered in snow too.
Spring is still a long way off. The snow isn’t melting at all.
Hmm… Won’t it snow again? We’re having this cold weather, you see.
Well, it’s good that it’s getting warmer… But why are you talking about such pointless things anyway?
Talking to me about the weather isn’t any use. You don’t have to force yourself to find something to talk about. I don’t think you have to get excited like you do either.
Hmm? You thought I didn’t notice? You weren’t that excited about a mere nandina, were you? You don’t have to do that kind of thing.
Are you going to keep playing dumb? Your eyelids look all puffy. It’s completely obvious that you were crying earlier. You were probably thinking about how Yamanami committed suicide. I suppose you were in the corner of the garden so you could cry alone, weren’t you? I’m sorry for passing by here.
Hmm? Why are you lying? I’m not trying to tell you off.
You’re concerned about strange things as usual. What does that have to do with no one else crying or you being a newcomer here? If you want to cry, then just cry and don’t let something peculiar like that hold you back.
It didn’t make me feel like crying, but I know there are men in the troop who can’t cry, even though they want to. Even you’ve noticed that, haven’t you?
In that case, just think that you’re crying on behalf of them too.
Wouldn’t Yamanami be somewhat happy if you cried alone for him, rather than no one crying for him at all?
Your eyes are already puffy, so wouldn’t it be better to cry as much as you like?
If you want to be alone, then I’ll be going now.
Hmm? That’s fine.
I won’t cry with you. If you don’t mind that, then I’ll stay here.
Hmm, what is it?
I don’t know either. He might have compared the weight of his ambitions and the weight of his life. I can’t be the judge of whether that was right or not.
Perhaps no one is at fault. Everyone acted upon their belief in their own ambitions, and that was the end result. But it may have been better for someone like me, who lacks their own ambitions and justice, to be the one who died.
I’m not joking. For a long time, when I said goodbye to those who have been greatly missed by many others, I felt that it would have been better for me to die.
Why are you so angry? I honestly feel that way, so it’s no use being angry.
I told you this before. You’ve got nothing to do with me, so if our opinions ever conflict with each other, then you don’t have to pay any attention to them.
You really are honest. You really are the complete opposite of me. Just consider what I said about it being better for me to have died as a joke then. That’s fine, isn’t it?
Then just forget that you ever heard it. I didn’t say it to make you angry. I’m always just saying what I think.
I wasn’t saying it out loud because I wanted you to do something about it.
You’re going to cry again? You’ll get too cold if you don’t come inside soon.
Ah… You’ve got a terrible look on your face. This is the first time I’ve seen someone with such puffy eyes. Your nose is bright red too, so you shouldn’t really let other people see you either, should you?
Ouch! What? Why did you get angry again all of a sudden? I was only telling the truth. You really are confusing.
 The nandina is a flowering plant native to East Asia which produces red berries. It’s also known as the heavenly bamboo or the sacred bamboo.
Summer 1865. Winter and spring had both passed by, making way for summer, but that incident had still left its mark on the headquarters. Despite my unsociable manner, even I could tell that the atmosphere inside the headquarters was getting worse. I wonder whether the situation will improve from now on.
Hmm? It’s you.
What is it?
I see, Toshi-san asked you to buy some uchiko .
So what’s the matter?
What? You don’t know what uchiko is?
I think you’ll make him angry and end up having to commit seppuku if you buy the one that’s meant for making soba noodles.
If you don’t know what it is, you should have asked him earlier.
Ah… Toshi-san certainly has been annoyed lately. It might be difficult to ask him.
If only Itou-san would learn a little more about how to treat Toshi-san. Toshi-san probably doesn’t like someone being so familiar with him. Itou-san really annoys him.
Ah… We were talking about uchiko, weren’t we? Uchiko is something you use to maintain swords.
It’s not sold as a powder, it’s in this shape…
Ah… Well… I think the sword merchant will understand if you go and tell them you want uchiko.
Never mind, I’ll go with you. I’ve got time. I’m concerned about you going alone.
Come on, let’s go.
It’s so hot. We should have waited until the evening before going it.
You’re welcome. You’d get a long lecture if you bought the wrong thing. Well, if I’m not at fault, then it doesn’t really matter. I thought it would be good to go out into the town with you.
It’d be a bother going with anyone else, I’d never do it.
Hmm? What’s the meaning of that reaction?
Your face is a little red.
Ah… I see. Now that you mention it, this is the first time I’ve been out with you.
But we’re only doing some shopping, so you don’t have to think that hard about it being the first time.
You were planning to ask me to come here with you sometime soon?
Ah… Do you actually love me?
Hmm? You don’t?
Why did you ask me then? It’s quite bold of you to ask a man you don’t love to do that.
What? You want to show me something?
Hmm… I see. Shall we go and buy the uchiko now then?
I’m a little interested in what you want to show me.
Are we there yet? We’re already outside of the town.
What are we going to see in a place like this?
Just ahead of here? Where?
The place you brought me to had a huge field. In one part of the field, there were many hollyhock flowers blooming. Red flowers bathed in the summer sun, shaken by the wind.
I’m sure most people would be moved by that sight, and words like “it’s beautiful” or “I was fascinated” would suit it. I tried to consider how you had felt, inviting me to town so you could show me this place. I then thought that it would be good to say that it was beautiful or that I was impressed, even if I would be lying. While I was hesitating, you began to speak, with the usual smile on your face. The same cheerful smile you always had. As I looked upon your smile, I couldn’t help doubting whether it was directed at me and for the first time, I was regretful that I didn’t feel moved like you did.
Ah… It was because I said I liked red flowers?
Hmm? Did I tell you that?
I’m surprised you remember something that I’m not even sure I told you. Even though you’re an idiot.
You like flowers too, hmm?
I see. I was the first person you wanted to show?
I’m sorry though. I don’t like these kinds of flowers. If only I had been able to say that I appreciated this scenery. Well, I don’t have a reason to lie. I’ll accept your good intentions though. Thank you.
Yes. The flowers I like are different. I’m sure you wouldn’t be able to imagine them.
Those flowers are called… I’m not going to tell you. You don’t have to know.
Yes. I’m sure it’s better that way.
Oh… Rain? The sky is clear though.
Ah. That tree is perfect for sheltering from the rain. Shall we wait there until the rain stops? We’re going to run.
 Uchiko is a powder used when cleaning swords. The powder is usually wrapped in silk, which allows only a small amount of powder to get through. Uchiko can also translate as “flour”.
Shall we sit down? It’s not wet here.
It’s hot, so going back will be easier because of the rain. But because of the sudden shower, we didn’t have time to appreciate the cool breeze.
Hmm? Is that so? Have we ever been in the middle of a sudden rain shower together?
Ah… Hmm… Now I remember.
It was the time you wiped my body, wasn’t it?
I didn’t forget about it. To put it more accurately, I never had any intention of remembering. I have quite a good memory of what you say and do when we’re together.
I often forget about what I’ve said, the place and the weather though. You see, the things I talk about and the weather aren’t important, are they?
Hmm… I remember most of what you say, compared to what other people say. Because you always say something different to what I think, it leaves a strong impression. I think I’ll remember the hollyhocks we saw today though.
I’m not remembering them to make you happy.
Well… It doesn’t matter why, does it? How about you think about it yourself sometimes?
The rain isn’t stopping yet.
A bridal procession?
Ah… A bridal procession for a fox? 
You’re right. The procession might be a long one. Well, it might be a long one because the fox is a young lady from a good family.
If you’ve got the time to be thinking about the wedding of a fox which might not even exist, then why not worry about your own marriage?
Eh? You don’t have a partner?
But your looks aren’t too bad. It seems like there’d be one or two men interested in you.
Hmm… Why don’t you marry me then?
Why are you looking at me like that? This is the first time I’ve seen that.
So that’s how you look when you’re surprised. I think you look better when you’re smiling and blushing.
Why…? It’s difficult to explain.
Right… I don’t really understand love… But…
For example… If you had to get married to someone else right away… Then I would get married to you. I was just saying that because it came into my mind.
Ah… Well, that’s right. I’d have to think what to do about the Shinsengumi regulations if we did.
I’d buy some tasty sweets for Kondo-san and give Toshi-san a free massage, then they might be won over.
Ah… You don’t have to seem so troubled, do you? It’s not as if I’m asking you to become my wife right away.
Hmm? You mean you can’t tell whether you’ll love someone if you don’t know them well?
Ah… Love is quite complicated. Will I fall in love with you if I get to know you better?
I’ve made up my mind. From now on, I’m going to try and get to know you better, then you’ll do the same for me.
You’re asking me why again?
You really don’t understand what I’m saying?
Ah… But I suppose it’s only natural since our way of thinking is so different.
There are several reasons, but they’re probably all too insignificant to mention. For example, I sometimes think about you before going to sleep. They’re all unimportant things like you being bothersome about greetings and being used to making baked potatoes. I’d normally forget about those kinds of things right away. That’s because there’s no point in remembering them. But not forgetting them probably means I’m curious about you. So that means it’d be fine for us to become husband and wife.
What do you think?
I already told you. You don’t have to seem so troubled. I’m not saying we have to do it now. I’m only telling you a thought I just had. If you don’t have anyone to marry later on, then consider it.
If you’ve understood, then shall we get going? The rain has almost stopped.
Ah… A rainbow? Where?
That’s right… I suppose it is beautiful.
No, I don’t think so. It just looks like the colour of sand to me.
That’s not it. If there really was an illness that made everything look the colour of sand, then it wouldn’t be possible for me to like red flowers.
You’re an idiot.
If you think I said something confusing, then that’s fine. It doesn’t change that the fact that you’re an idiot though. You should understand that.
I know what colour it is.
The indigo white sky. The deep red hollyhock. The evergreen leaves. The light blue colour of the haori . I know them all. But I don’t feel any emotion. Everyone gets excited about the beauty of a rainbow or a blooming flower, but I don’t feel anything when I see those things. I’ve never felt what it’s like to be captivated or moved by something. That’s not normal, is it? It’s just the same as there not being a colour that can move me. So I think that everything I see is a dull sight which looks as if it has been dyed the colour of sand.
That’s why I said it looks like the colour of sand. Do you understand?
Ah… Well… The reason I like red flowers… I don’t want to tell you why.
We’ve only just decided to get to know each other better. But there are some things you don’t have to know, so I’m not going to tell you.
I’ve told other people about it and there are plenty of men in the troop who know about it. So it’s not something special. But I don’t think I want you to know about it. So this conversation is over. Alright?
Right. Shall we go now then? If I get told off for coming back late, then accompanying you will have been meaningless.
 狐の嫁入り行列 (Kitsune no yomeiri gyouretsu, Fox’s bridal procession) refers to when it rains while the sun is out as it is said that foxes hold their wedding processions during this time.
 A haori is a kimono-like jacket which is either hip or thigh length. The Shinsengumi are well known for wearing a light blue haori.
What are you doing?
You hurt your little finger just now, didn’t you?
You get surprised too easily.
I’m going out on my rounds now. But I thought I’d see what you were doing before I went. Do you want to move that bucket?
It looks quite heavy. What’s inside?
Miso , hmm? So that’s why it’s heavy.
It’s too difficult for you to carry by yourself, isn’t it? You’re an idiot.
You want to move it over there?
There you go. Is that alright?
You’re welcome. Tell me if there’s anything else heavy that you’re having trouble with.
You’re not? I’m going out on my rounds then. See you later.
Hey. Are you looking where you’re going?
Ah, what a disaster.
Why were you carrying so many clothes this early in the morning?
It doesn’t look as if you were going to wash them.
Ah… Sewing, hmm?
I suppose Heisuke had been saving them up.
I knew it.
Here you go. That’s everything.
They’re probably light because they’re clothes, but if you’ve got this many, then why don’t you divide them up before carrying them?
You fall over a lot and it’d be dangerous if you couldn’t see where you were going.
Are you planning on sewing all of these by yourself? I’m good at sewing, by the way.
I see. Well, I don’t think you’re doing it alone because you don’t want help with your work.
Hmm… If you’re saying that you’ll be fine on your own, then can you finish them in an hour?
You won’t be alright if you get behind on your other work.
I see. In that case, if you’re really having trouble, let me know and I can help you.
I’m going to check whether you’ve done them all after an hour. See you later.
Hey. Are you here? I’m coming in.
You were preparing lots of fish earlier, weren’t you?
Thanks for your hard work.
You looked as if you were about to take a break, so I thought we could eat this daifuku  I brought with me.
You’re feeling hungry now, aren’t you?
Here you go.
Why have you got a strange look on your face? Is there something the matter?
What are you talking about? It doesn’t seem like we’re together too often, aren’t you imagining things?
Come on, why aren’t you eating?
Aside from bean paste, there’s one with sweet potato too. I bought it because I remembered the baked potato I ate with you.
Hmm… This is my first time eating daifuku with a filling that’s not bean paste, but it tastes good.
The shop I got these from just opened and is apparently popular.
There were lots of other strange types of daifuku, so why don’t I take you there sometime?
Alright. Tell when you have some free time then.
Ah. You surprised me! What is it?
Ah… About us spending time together recently?
It’s the truth though…
Is that so? I don’t think we’ve spent enough time together to make people start talking. Aren’t you worrying about it too much?
There’s nothing to worry about, is there?
We haven’t held hands yet.
Ah… We’ve kissed though.
But that’s all it was. It’s perfectly natural, so I don’t think I’ll be ordered to commit seppuku.
What? You want us to stop seeing each other?
You see, now that I’m staying with you as often as possible, I’ve gradually come to understand you. Having less opportunities to get to know you better would be unfortunate.
Because you like flowers, you take care of the garden when you have time. Your cooking tastes good, but you’re no good at cleaning up. You’re quite a good-natured person. I’ve come to know a lot of things about you since then.
Even you know me a little better now, don’t you? It would be a different matter if you didn’t like that though… As long as you don’t mind it, then I’m against the idea of seeing you less often.
I’m against ending our relationship. I can’t allow that! I don’t agree! Anyway, I’m telling you that I’m against it.
You don’t plan on changing your mind, despite how much I’ve said?
Does it really draw that much attention when we’re together?
I hadn’t realised. Is that so?
I understand. I used to check on you in the morning, afternoon, evening and night. I’ll make it morning, evening and night then. Is that alright?
But I want to check on you when I wake up in the morning. I’m busy in the afternoon, so I can put up with it somehow. Evening is the perfect time for us to eat sweets and talk to each other like this. As for the night, it’s normal to see each other before going to sleep, isn’t it? There’s nothing else I can take away, is there?
That’s that then. I’ll come again later tonight. See you later.
 Miso is a traditional seasoning made from fermented soybeans.
 Daifuku is a type of rice cake which usually has a sweet filling such as red bean paste.
I’ve found you. Where were you?
Even though you’re usually resting in your room around this time, you weren’t there today.
It doesn’t seem like someone asked you to run an errand. Don’t disappear like that, it gave me a shock!
Anyway… Why are you carrying a plant?
You bought it? Why?
What? It’s for me?
I’m not interested in trees or flowers though.
What is this plant anyway?
It’s spring, but it doesn’t have any buds on it.
Is it one that doesn’t have any flowers?
Ah… A hydrangea , hmm?
You bought something that’s out of season.
You should have bought a plant which was flowering.
Hmm… Waiting for it to blossom is fun?
Oh… So why are you giving this to me?
What? You’re telling me to look after it instead of spending time with you?
You want to avoid being with me that much?
If you do, then you should make it clear…
Ah… You’re going to look after it too, so we’ll talk together when we do?
Hmm… You’re pretty thoughtful for an idiot.
I heard that hydrangeas are difficult to take care of.
So we can talk naturally while looking after it, can’t we?
Well, if that’s the case, then it’s fine.
Give me the pot.
Isn’t this pot a bit small?
It’ll probably get too small right away.
Wouldn’t it be better to plant it somewhere else?
Here you go.
Ah… I see. So I’m going to be looking after it too.
Alright. I’ll do it.
Let’s plant it somewhere spacious in the garden.
Is that enough digging?
Put it here then. I’ll fill up the hole.
What? You’re going to do it by hand?
Ah… So the spade would damage the roots?
But why did you choose a hydrangea?
There are plenty of other flowers, aren’t there?
What are you talking about?
I’m surprised to hear that from you!
Just what makes me difficult to deal with?
Don’t compare me to the hydrangea.
You’re difficult to handle too.
And you’re also careless.
We’re not similar. I’m not difficult to deal with.
How did you get that impression of me? I can’t understand it at all.
Hmm… I suppose I can understand that hydrangeas have a sense of purity…
Why does that remind you of me? How strange.
In that case, all flowers remind me of you.
They suit you well, you see.
You blushed and went quiet after that, so I didn’t say anything either and began placing the earth around the hydrangea instead.
And then the daily task of looking after that hydrangea with you began.
When I wasn’t out on a mission, and you weren’t doing cleaning or laundry, we would take the chance to go to the hydrangea and take care of it. We’d go to a plant seller and ask how to care for it, change how often we watered it and trim the leaves.
While we were doing that, the story of you and I taking care of the hydrangea spread amongst the men and they seemed to take an interest. Sometimes Kondo-san and Nagakura would water it, and I was surprised when even Saito-san said he would like to water it.
The hydrangea was cared for by you, I and the other men, and grew quickly. However, when the seasons passed by and the rainy season came round, the hydrangea did not blossom. Even now that another season has come, the hydrangea still hasn’t bloomed. Before long, the Shinsengumi ended up moving to a new headquarters. We left the hydrangea behind at Nishi Honganji  and made Fudodo Village  our new base.
 The hydrangea is also the flower featured on the cover of Sanosuke’s CD. According to Japanese flower language, the general meaning of the hydrangea is “fickle”, “cruel”, “cold-hearted” and “conceited”, while blue hydrangeas represent “patient love”.
 Nishi Honganji is a temple in Kyoto which the Shinsengumi made their headquarters in 1865.
 Fudodo Village was the third headquarters of the Shinsengumi and was given to them as a reward for their achievements.
December 18th, 1867 . At a certain street.
Together with the men who had hidden in the darkness, I ran out, wielding my spear.
The flowers bloomed. When I stab through the bodies in front of me, red flowers bloom.
I don’t get as excited as I did before. I wonder why that is. Perhaps it was because I was turning my former allies into corpses. Or maybe it was your existence within my heart. I didn’t find the answer, but as I gazed at the red flowers at my feet, I longed to see you.
Of course she’s asleep.
Ah. I woke her up.
You can go back to sleep.
You don’t mind staying awake?
Yes, just until a little while ago. Then I wanted to see you.
We fought against the Goryou-Eji.
I killed my former allies.
I saw many of the red flowers I liked so much. But they seemed to be more faded than usual and I didn’t think they were particularly beautiful. Looking at the hydrangea which didn’t bloom was much better than seeing those flowers.
The men who I used to consider my allies were lying on top of those flowers.
Nagakura even looked as if he was about to cry. However, just as I thought, I couldn’t cry. Once again, I thought that I should have died instead of them.
As I thought about that, it was your face came to mind. When I thought of you, I was glad that I hadn’t died. Then I was shocked that I had finally become able to think of something so terrible.
But I was no longer able to feel as if I should have been the one to die, no matter what. While I was wondering why I felt that way, I gradually began to feel as if I wanted to see you.
What is it? What’s the matter, all of a sudden?
It’s normal? Why? Why is it normal to feel glad that it wasn’t me?
I haven’t felt like that before… Does it mean I didn’t want to die because I didn’t want to leave you behind? In other words… I’m in love with you? So that’s why I wanted to see you?
I see. I suppose that’s it. I don’t want to leave you behind and die in someone else’s place, but when I thought about the possibility of you dying, I felt that I would be happy to die in your place. I want you to keep on living.
That means… You love me too. That’s why you want me to keep on living, don’t you?
If I’m wrong, then tell me now. Nod if it’s true.
You really…love me? Even you told me you didn’t before…
I…see… You…love me…
Right… I see… So that’s why you embraced me earlier…
You never did that for me before, did you?
But that doesn’t change that you love me, does it? In that case, the reason doesn’t matter.
Look at me directly and say it again. Say that you love me.
I love you too.
I’m sorry. I want to feel you closer to me.
I want you to help me forget about the red flowers I saw today.
Your lips are warm, so I feel that you’re alive.
I want you. I don’t care about the Shinsengumi regulations. If I had to choose between not making love to you or making love to you and having to commit seppuku, I would choose the latter. That’s how much I desire you. That’s alright, isn’t it?
Put your arms around me. I want you to feel the warmth of my body too.
Look this way.
When we did this before, you didn’t react at all, did you? That was something new to me and I found it somewhat interesting, but it really is better when you react. It’s because you love me. You’re ready for this.
No. Don’t look away. Show me the face of the woman who loves me. I want to see it clearly.
Your hair feels so soft. It makes me want to tell you how beautiful your skin and hair is.
You are beautiful.
Just touching your hair and skin is enough to make me feel good, but how do you feel?
I see. Then… I want you to feel even better…
Don’t get so tense this time.
Your skin is really smooth.
Your hands feel tense. You’re nervous.
Let me take your hands.
Does that tickle?
But if you can’t hold your voice back any longer, then dig your nails into my skin and I’ll kiss you.
Even if you can hold back, but you want a kiss, then dig your nails into my skin too. I’ll kiss you right away. Just like this…
You did it… So you want more…
You’re embarrassed? It’s alright. I’ll take off my clothes too. Then we’ll be the same.
Well, you’ve already seen my body before, so this probably isn’t the first time. I suppose the conditions are a little different though, aren’t they?
But… I want to see yours, so show it to me. I want to see you completely, the person who loves me.
See. You really are beautiful.
You feel even warmer. Being close to someone else feels good.
Your eyes look so gentle. They’re so brilliant too. It makes me feel calm. Even your eyes are beautiful.
Did that surprise you? I want this too.
Can you see me?
We’re alive. You and me.
If only everything that happened this evening had been a dream…
Hey. If something happens… If there’s a reason for me to die… If I want to die… Will you kill me?
When I die, I want you to be the one who kills me.
Promise me that you’ll kill me.
Hmm? You’ll never do it? Why not?
I would kill you if you wanted to die. So that’s alright, isn’t it?
It’s no good at all?
You won’t allow me to die?
I see. You’re stricter than I thought.
In that case I’ll choose to live in boredom. I think I’ll still be able to live a better life than I have up until now if I’m with you.
Hmm? What isn’t right?
I won’t be bored if I live with you? Really?
You’re going to entertain me enough to make me forget about wanting to die?
I see. You say some amazing things.
But I think you’re the one person who can actually do it.
Even now I don’t feel bored.
I also hope I can to entertain you enough to keep you smiling all the time.
I love you.
I’m glad you didn’t die at the Ikedaya. I’m glad we met. Didn’t you survive just for the sake of loving me?
There’s no doubt about it.
Show me that the two of us really are alive. Make me feel as if the two of us are lovers.
 This is the date of the Aburanokoji Incident, where Itou Kashitarou was killed.
Ever since we became lovers, you warned me not to see you too often. I didn’t have that intention at all, so I think you’re being too careful. It seems that you were being quite careful to make sure our relationship wasn’t discovered. Thanks to that, we weren’t forced to commit seppuku and for a short time, we were able to spend our time peacefully without anything happening.
However, the same couldn’t be said for the other men. The situation that the Shinsengumi was in was only getting worse. One cause of that was likely to be the increasing calls for the shogunate to be overthrown after Lord Yoshinobu  returned power to the imperial court.
At some point, it probably became impossible for the Shinsengumi to escape.
The winter of 1867. The sparks which seemed as if they could light at any moment, silently scattered themselves around the Shinsengumi. The new year was closing in.
Is now a good time? I’m coming in.
I would like you to accompany me. I want to go into the city.
Yes. I’m going shopping. There’s something I want to talk about too. It’s difficult to talk about it here.
I see. Get ready and we’ll leave right away.
My breath is completely white.
There’s no one else around. Alright, listen carefully. There’s something I want to tell you.
You’ve also noticed the Shinsengumi’s current situation and the way the world is moving, haven’t you? There’ll be a war soon. I’m sure it’ll be a great war.
You won’t be called to the front lines though. Doing the odd jobs around the headquarters is a maid’s work, but going to the front lines is a different matter.
You’ve done more than enough for the Shinsengumi. I’m probably not the only one who feels that way either. Haven’t you already paid us back for saving your life? So there’s no need for you to come to the front lines.
However… I don’t want to leave you behind. So I intend to take you to the front lines, whether you like it or not. A man would normally leave a woman behind at a time like this. But there’s no way I can do that. I don’t want to lie either. I can only tell you the truth.
I want you to come with me. So come with me.
Hmm? You felt the same way too?
I see. Of course I’m not going to say you can’t. I really want to be with you. There’s no way I could leave you behind. I thought you would be a little more hesitant about going though. I didn’t think we’d be able to talk about it this quickly.
In that case, there’s something else I want to talk about.
If you’re coming to the front lines with me, then I’ve decided to take you there as my wife, not as a maid of the Shinsengumi. It’d be strange to bring a mere maid to the battlefield and put her in danger, but things would be different if we’ve promised to have a future together.
I don’t want to send you somewhere far away just because you’ll be in danger. When I think that you might end up with another man, I won’t be able to concentrate on the battle. So I want you to become my wife.
I love you, so this feeling won’t change from now on.
I’ll always love you. So I want you to be with me. No matter how dangerous the places we go might be, I think that I’ll be fine if we’re together.
What do you think? Before you looked as it might be unthinkable, but will you be my wife now?
You’re crying? What does that mean? It doesn’t mean you hate the idea so much that you’re crying, does it?
I see. You’re going to become my wife. Thank you.
I don’t really know why you’re crying, but I’ll wipe away your tears.
We’re going shopping next.
You want to immerse yourself in this moment? What? I still don’t really understand you. I don’t really get what you’re trying to immerse yourself in, but can’t you do it at home?
We’re going shopping now, alright? Come on. Let’s go.
Not that way. This way.
Choose something you want here.
That’s right. One of these combs.
We’re going to be husband and wife, so we’ve got to have one, haven’t we?
You’ll accept it, won’t you?
Ah… You’re crying again. You’re crying a lot today, aren’t you?
We’re in front of other people, so I want you to hold back a little. Save your crying and immersing in whatever it is you were doing until you get back.
Alright, choose one. I want to buy it and give it to you right away. Then you’ll be my wife,won’t you?
Ah… Then tonight will be our first night together.
Ouch! What is it? Why’d you hit me all of a sudden?
I don’t mind if anyone else hears us. It’s the truth, you see. It’s true that you’re going to be my wife and that tonight will be our first night together…
Ouch! I can’t believe it! There was no need to hit me twice! I would’ve fought back, if it hadn’t been you.
Ah. You want this comb? Alright, I’m going to buy it then.
Excuse me. I’ll take this one.
Ah, it’s fine as it is. Thank you.
I’ve got it. Come here, I’ll put it into your hair.
It suits you. Now you’re mine, aren’t you?
Earlier, I said it didn’t matter what danger we might face, but I don’t plan on putting you in danger for a long time.
There’s something I’ve been thinking about. I just want a little longer until I make up my mind. Stay with me until then. I’ll make sure to protect you. Let’s stay together.
It wasn’t long before it happened. The Shinsengumi made their way to Fushimi  under the orders of Lord Yoshinobu and went into battle. This era will undergo some great changes. Many of the men lost their lives in this battle and the Shinsengumi was destroyed. Lord Yoshinobu became an enemy of the emperor. After several battles, I left the Shinsengumi together with Nagakura and several other men.
Determination was necessary to make that decision. I don’t have great ambitions like Kondo-san and Hijkata-san do. Even so…
I wanted to see the future of the Shinsengumi, who had taken care of me for such a long time. I wondered what form Kondo-san’s ideals would take and I couldn’t abandon the feeling of wanting to help. However, I chose to leave the Shinsengumi as I wanted to live a long life with you. As I was less ambitious than the other men, I probably had more choices open to me. That’s why I chose this answer. I plan to leave the battles behind and live with you.
Yet, there was something I understood after leaving. It seems that I was more attached to the Shinsengumi than I first thought.
Soon I will experience an extremely sorrowful feeling. When I told you that, you smiled and said “I think everyone knows that you love the Shinsengumi”.
After that, you were lost in thought for a while. You said there was something I could keep beside me as a remembrance of the Shinsengumi, even though you didn’t know whether it would feel like a true connection to them.
I was surprised that it was so easy for us to get permission to take the hydrangea away. They said they didn’t mind us taking a flower that’d probably never bloom. It still hasn’t bloomed yet, has it? This brings back memories…
Ah. There it is. It’s grown since the last time I saw it. I hope we’ll be able to put it into the pot we brought with us.
Yes, we’ll replant it right away.
Alright, let’s start digging. I’ll only use the spade part of the way. Starting to dig from here won’t hurt the roots, will it?
Ah. These are the hydrangea’s roots? Shall I use my hands to dig?
Ah… They’ve grown longer. They weren’t that long when we planted it though.
Although it hasn’t bloomed, it had put down its roots where they couldn’t be seen.
Seeing this makes me wonder whether I had put down my roots in the Shinsengumi. I thought there was no reason for me to be around, but perhaps even I was necessary as a member of the Shinsengumi.
Of course I was? You’re right.
I wish that everyone else would be able to see the hydrangea bloom with us.
 Tokugawa Yoshinobu was the last shogun of the Tokugawa shogunate, who unsuccessfully tried to reform the shogunate.
 Fushimi (located near Kyoto) was an important area during the time that the Tokugawa shogunate was in power.
Oh… She’s not here…
Where is she? Outside?
What is it? You’re so energetic early in the morning.
What? There are some buds on the hydrangea?
Let me see.
Ah… It’s true. There are some buds on it.
The flowers might finally bloom this year. I doubted that it would blossom, but it was worth taking care of it.
The buds are…blue…
I see… Light blue…
Yes. Everyone in the Shinsengumi looked after it together. It might be only natural for a light blue  hydrangea to bloom.
I didn’t think I’d see that light blue colour here again…
What is it? You’re trying your hardest to reach up and pat my head… Don’t treat me like a child.
If you’re going to touch me, then touch me here.
I want to do it. I know we’ve only just woken up, but it’s alright, isn’t it?
Why not? I made sure to return your kiss, didn’t I? We’d always usually do it after that…
Ah… Just now, Sanjuu came to mind. A name for the baby. If it’s a girl…
Ah. Which one is it?
You don’t know? Alright, I’ll think up names for both now then.
Anyway… You were running just now, weren’t you? Aren’t you being an idiot?
You’ve got to rest. Hurry… Go inside! This way!
Come inside. Sit there.
Never mind! No more running or walking quickly. I won’t allow it. Don’t do it again.
Hurry up and sit down. Stop standing up!
What would you like to eat?
I’ll make it, so you sit down!
Or would it be better for you to lie down?
Lie down over there. Just stay still.
Is that so? I don’t think it’s alright…
You won’t fall over if you don’t move. I don’t know how long it takes for a baby to be born, but wouldn’t it be better to rest until then?
I haven’t said anything strange, have I? You really do laugh at the strangest times.
Hmm? What is it?
I should be the one saying that. I hope we’ll continue to have a good relationship too.
Can I hold you? I’ll try not to touch your stomach.
You know… You’re my reason for living.
From now on, keep on saying things that I just wouldn’t imagine and keep me entertained. As long as I’m with you, I won’t feel bored. I’m glad I became your husband. I’m grateful for that.
Thank you. Please stay by my side from now on. Smile everyday. I love you.
 浅葱色 (asagi-iro, light blue) was the colour of the haori jackets worn by the Shinsengumi.
Tachibana introduces himself and says that he’ll be using the dummy head mic for the free talk too. He also mentions that this is his second time playing Sanosuke in the series, after his first appearance in Kekkonroku. He isn’t sure whether he has already said this previously in Kekkonroku or another Rejet series, but he feels that all of Rejet’s series are very long.
He talks about how Sanosuke had a tragic end in the previous series, Kekkonroku, but also says that a happy ending was especially created for everyone who wished for one. He feels that performing a happy ending was more difficult as he was used to the idea of Sanosuke as a slightly abnormal person, so it was difficult to connect him with the idea of a happy ending. He isn’t sure how the listeners might interpret it, but he thinks that he was able to create a somewhat sweeter version of Sanosuke this time.
The aspect of the story which interested him the most was the hydrangea plant. He mentions how in acidic soil blue flowers will bloom, but in alkali or neutral soil, red flowers will bloom. He recalls being curious about a hydrangea which bloomed a single red flower and suspecting that there’d be a body underneath it. By taking in the aluminium ions from acidic soil, hydrangea flowers become blue. However, if there was a body underneath the plant, the phosphoric acid from its bones would bond to the aluminium ions and become aluminium phosphate, which cannot be dissolved in water. Therefore the hydrangea won’t be able to absorb the aluminium ions and will become red.
He mentions the scene where the heroine and Sanosuke were digging a hole, and suggests the story wouldn’t be such a happy ending if they had been digging a hole to bury someone. However, contrary to his expectations, they replanted the tree as normal.
He then tells the listeners to direct their requests to Rejet if they’d like to hear any more “special lectures from Tachibana-sensei”. He goes on to mention that his CD is only the fourth, and the series will be eight CDs in total. He hopes that everyone will also listen to the other Hiyokuroku CDs.
He isn’t yet sure whether there will be a continuation of the Wasurenagusa series, but he still hopes that there’ll be a chance for the listeners and him to meet again.
Sanooooo!!!! Oh gosh, his previous kekkonroku CD was a bitter sweet surprise… and got really made me depressed but now, not only did they MARRIED but having A CHILD TOGETHER!!!! I’m so happy that I’m actually jumping around lol.
But imagine someone with eyes of a dead fish to rise a child and taking care of his wife really makes me wonder how their lives ends up XD. Sano is really more human and gentlemen-like in this CD comparing to his previous CD, which he was indeed more anti social.
I don’t know how many times I have to say thank you (you must have heard about a million times already) but really, THANK YOU, you made my day and my love toward Sano had reached the limit ehehehe.
OMG, thank you for hard work, <3 <3 the last cd made me cried for days straight </3. You made my day <3. I'm glad he got a happy ending now.
Omg we got good end loll. I didn’t realize this is the happy series (ok as happy as rejet’s shinsengumi can be) and um… I’m like laughing and crying right now. Also that lecture at the end was so great loll. Sounds like such a great setup for a detective novel.
Thank you so much for translating this it is so wonderfully and beautifully done.
You’re welcome! I’m also glad Sano got a happy ending this time. Agreed, I would definitely read something with that setup 😀