Volume 9

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asphodel
Volume 9

Just thought I'd start a post in case anyone wanted to discuss Volume 9 and/or Volume 9 translations. In case you're wondering, I don't think Egoist cologne is a thing, alas.

labingi
Yay! Volume 9!

Thanks for doing this translation and posting to let us know it's up! I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but it's going on my list. We get to talk about Haruie! (I've really wanted to read this for years; I've been told it's pretty close to the OVA, but I'd still like to see the original.)

asphodel
I love the Ayako-focused and

I love the Ayako-focused and Chiaki-focused scenes. I feel like they're the ones who ground the team and give it perspective, going "Come on, guys, it's the 1990s. We've been at this for 400 years, there are some dysfunctional patterns that we've just gotta change." (They probably speak for a lot of readers, hah.)

There's also a side story after this with Chiaki as main character that I'm looking forward to. :)

labingi
"Come on, guys, it's the

"Come on, guys, it's the 1990s. We've been at this for 400 years, there are some dysfunctional patterns that we've just gotta change."

Very well said!

labingi
Thoughts on Prologue & Ch. 1

I've now read the prologue and chapter 1 and quite enjoyed them. They read a lot like the OVA, and I'd hoped to get a bit more background on Haruie and Shintarou, but this did clarify one point I'd never understood, which is (more or less) how long Haruie had been in a woman's body before meeting Shintarou, i.e. not long but long enough to have some experience with navigating womanhood. This is good to know and explains why she's able to focus more on getting to know him as opposed to constant bafflement over how to engage with the world as a woman. I liked her sense of chagrin at her male self's clueless attitude toward women (despite 200 years of life experience!). I buy this would be the case in a world where women's experience/personhood is not much pushed onto men, where men don't really have to see it. And it's a nice piece of explanation for Haruie's choice to remain a woman. Prior to Shintarou (who could never be the whole reason), we already see Haruie feeling disaffected with her past self and wanting to go in a different direction.

Same as in the OVA (and vol. 20) but interesting to consider is Kagetora's releasing Haruie. I think this speaks well to the dynamics of his life and his relationship with Naoe. He loves the other Yasha, and he knows they love him, but he doesn't really trust them not to leave him. And witness: the most obviously loyal of his retainers leaves him. He doesn't blame her for it or expect anything else, but it's a nice reinforcement of why he so desperately needs to test Naoe's loyalty over and over again.

As to Naoe in ch. 1, it was a nice bit of expansion on the OVA, kind of fun to see Naoe in his Tachibana life. His high school friend doesn't seem to know him very well, even as Yoshiaki, I mean. Doesn't he opine that Naoe's not interested in women--what? Of course, then he backtracks on that. The comparison between the boss, whose name is escaping me, and Kagetora is so obvious as to be a sledgehammer. And it works well overall, but I do wonder why the boss, as a character, is so pointed in stating things like what a dangerous enemy Naoe could be to anyone who truly came to rely on him. Sure, the text is talking about Kagetora. But what is the boss talking about? This isn't the sort of thing someone would just say off the top of his head unless he's experienced something like it, and I see no sign that the boss has. That makes him feel a bit like a mouthpiece for Sensei. Overall, though, very enjoyable and look forward to reading more!

asphodel
Re: Thoughts on Prologue & Ch. 1

I liked her sense of chagrin at her male self's clueless attitude toward women (despite 200 years of life experience!). I buy this would be the case in a world where women's experience/personhood is not much pushed onto men, where men don't really have to see it.

Given the time period in which those 200 years were lived (1600s to 1800s), as well as his transient life-style, I very much buy Haruie not ever having to stop and think about what the world looked like from a woman's point of view. (In fact, I doubt many men do now...)

He loves the other Yasha, and he knows they love him, but he doesn't really trust them not to leave him.

Kagetora and Naoe's relationship is fascinating in part because it's so unhealthy and yet so necessary for holding everything together. This is contrasted and accentuated by the fact and both Kagetora and Naoe are capable of having healthy relationships with other people--if they could just show each other a little of the grace that Kagetora displays when he lets Haruie go...

Doesn't he opine that Naoe's not interested in women--what?

"Interested" as in wouldn't mind having sex with? Sure. "Interested" as in high school puppy love? Nope.

That makes him feel a bit like a mouthpiece for Sensei.

Yeah, I definitely read Hazama as "Kagetora stand-in," and the pointed remark as "I'm astute and a great boss--i.e. competition!"

labingi
More on Naoe

Okay, I confess I've only read through it once, but doesn't Naoe's friend also say he's surprised to see Naoe in the business world? And hasn't Naoe worked for years for his brother's real estate company? Or am I making stuff up. :-)

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