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Study for the JLPT
Manga-assisted Japanese Study
Novel Lesson 3: Kill the Crows 
25th-Oct-2006 09:22 am
This excerpt comes from the series 三千世界の鴉を殺し (Sanzen Sekai no Karasu o Koroshi) by 津守時生 (Tsumori Tokio), illustrated by 麻々原絵里依 (Mamahara Erii [Ellie]), published by Wings Bunko (新書館--Shinshokan). (Early books in the series had a different--and MUCH better--illustrator.) This particular scene is from a side story written as fanservice, and is therefore unavailable in stores. The title is ハートのエースが出てこない (Heart no Ace ga Dete Konai), and the scene is on pages 44-47.

This is a science fiction series set in the far future, when humans have colonized the galaxy. The main character is Lucifard Oscarstein, an inter-species hybrid whose heritage is most strongly that of an alien race of "angels" called the Ra-Phael who had extremely powerful psionic abilities as well as superhuman strength and beauty. Lucifard is a highly decorated military officer sent to work on a remote planet as punishment for blowing up a space station to defeat some terrorists.

His main romantic interest in the series is the military hospital's head surgeon, Dr. Saladin Alamoot, an alien from a nearly extinct race known as Houraijin. (This is a term that essentially means "Immortal.") Saladin is several hundred years old and has a number of abilities, including fingernails that can turn into throwing knives and fangs that can inject a victim with his bodily fluid to make the person his immortal slave. He gives off a type of powerful pheromone when aroused, though Lucifard has some measure of resistance to it (or he would be a love-slave by now). He is a skilled doctor and acupuncturist, with the ability to immobilize (among other things) an enemy with his needles.

[Note: My icon is the original illustrator's rendition of Saladin.]

Saladin is in love with Lucifard and is determined to seduce him, but Lucifard continues to insist that he is straight. He has succumbed to kissing the doctor on a few occasions (prompted by the pheromone), and has fantasized about him, but hasn't gone any further than that. In this scene, Lucifard is dealing with the repercussions after a friend of his patted Saladin's rear to honor a poker bet.

A note about the names...the letters "r" and "l" are written with the same character in Japanese, so you might read Saladin as Saradin if you wish. I dislike that reading because it makes his nickname into "Sara," which is a girl's name in English. (Lucifard was specifically named after Lucifer, though, so I feel pretty safe on that score.)

Fuku no ue kara hadaka o souzou suru no wa futsuu da ga, hifu made toorikoshite kinniku ni moerarete shimau no wa fukuzatsu na kibun datta.
It was normal for a person to imagine what one might look like naked, but he had mixed feelings about someone going beyond even the skin and getting turned on by his muscles.

  1. ~ made toorikoshite = "going beyond even ~ "
  2. moeraretemoeru [passive] = "get turned on"; technically, moeru is a term used for excessive excitement caused by one's particular kinks or fetishes or (in a less strong sense) individual tastes. For example, I really like guys with glasses, so this would be applied to when I get all fangirly over a cute guy with glasses. Putting it into the passive means that it's not Lucifard himself who is doing it, but rather it is someone [Saladin] doing it in response to him. This is a special use of the passive in Japanese that is different from the passive in English.
  3. fukuzatsu na kibun = literally "complicated mood"; this is best translated as "mixed feelings"

Gekai no shiroi te wa futomomo no sotogawa kara uchigawa e to idou suru.
The surgeon's white hand moved from his outer thigh to his inner thigh.

"Gaisokukoukin, daitaichokukin, houkoukin, naisokukoukin--"
"Vastus lateralis, rectus femoris, sartorius, vastus medialis--"

"Aa, dakara daitaishitoukin 'tte iu no ka."
"Oh, so is that why they're called the quadriceps femoris?"

"Sou desu."
"That's correct."

"Tokoro de ore, kaibougaku no kougi o ukete iru no deshou ka. Soretomo kudokarete iru no ka, odosarete iru no ka...hanbetsu dekimasen."
"By the way, am I being given a lecture on anatomy? Or am I being seduced, or threatened...I can't tell."

  1. tokoro de = "by the way"
  2. kudokarerukudoku [passive] = "seduce"; this can be used in non-intimate situations to mean simply "persuade," such as when businessman convinces a client to invest in a product, but that clearly isn't the case here.

"Ningen no seishin wa, kyoufu ni yoru shimpakusuu no joushou o seiteki koufun ni yoru shimpakusuu no joushou to kondou shiyasui to iu jikken deeta ga arimasu."
"There is experimental data that the human mind easily confuses an increase in heart rate due to fear with an increase in heart rate due to sexual excitement."

  1. ~ ni yoru = "due to ~ "
  2. -yasui = "easily"/"easy to"

Rushifaado mo kiita koto ga atta. Seimei no kiken o tomonau joukyouka de, issho ni koudou shita danjo wa koi ni ochiyasui to iu hanashi da.
Lucifard had also heard that before. It was said that men and women who worked together under life-threatening circumstances fell in love easily.

"Jikken kekka jitai wa wakaranai de mo nee ga, kusuguttai dake ja shimpakusuu joushou shinee yo."
"It's not that I don't understand the results of the experiments themselves, but my heart rate won't increase just from a bit of tickling."

  1. wakaranai de mo neewakaranai de mo nai = "don't not understand"; this double negative sounds better as "it's not that I don't understand." ...In other words, "I understand."
  2. ~ dake ja = "if it's just ~ "/"if it's merely ~ "; here Lucifard is saying, "If you're just going to tickle me, that's not enough to get me excited."

"Umu. Tampaku na ningen wa yarinikui desu ne."
"Hm. It's hard with someone so dispassionate, isn't it."

  1. The word tampaku is hard to translate. It is a description for someone who has a relatively weak sex drive, or who doesn't get turned on easily. I used "dispassionate," but I'm sure it could be translated other ways.
  2. -nikui = "difficult to"/"hard to"

"Kore de koufun suru hou ga tokushu na shumi no mochinushi da 'tte. Somosomo dokutaa wa kaibou shite iru saichuu ni koufun suru no ka?"
"I'm telling you, anyone who would get turned on by this has peculiar tastes. Anyway, do you get turned on when you're in the middle of an autopsy, Doctor?"

Note: The quotation marker 'tte in this instance functions as the phrase "I'm telling you."

"Tanoshii to wa omoimasu ga, sonna hentai de wa arimasen. Nekurofiria de wa arumai ni. Anata no kinniku ya kokkaku o souzou suru to, sono utsukushisa ni tousuikan o oboeru dake desu."
"I do think it is enjoyable, but I'm not that kind of pervert. It's not like I'm a necrophiliac. I am simply entranced when I imagine the beauty of your muscles and bone structure."

  1. The word 死体愛好者 (shitai aikousha) was glossed with the katakana for "necrophilia."
  2. ~ de wa arumai ni = "it's not as if I'm ~ "; this phrase is commonly encountered, though it generally ends with shi instead of ni. Whereas shi would carry the sense of "after all," the use of ni adds the implication that he is mildly belittling the suggestion, along the lines of saying "for goodness' sake."

Me no mae no shinen wa fukasugite, honno asase ni sae ashi o torarete shirimochi o tsuku you na kodomo reberu no otoko ni wa rikai dekinai.
The abyss before him was so deep, it was incomprehensible for a man who was at the level of a child who falls on his rear after having his feet caught even in just the shallows.

  1. ~ sae = "even ~ "; the ni in this case marks the agent for the passive torarete
  2. shirimochi o tsuku = "fall on one's rear"

Daga, kiken to shimpi ni michita shinen dakara koso, koukishin no tsuyoi kodomo wa hikitsukerareru.
However, precisely because it was an abyss filled with danger and mystery, a child with strong curiosity was drawn to it.

Note: The phrase ~ (da)kara koso means "precisely because ~ ."

Kou shite kori mo sezu, genjitsu to iu gamban ni ashiba o uchikonde, risei no kyouka gomu roopu o kataashi ni kukuritsuke, banjii jampu o kurikaesu wake na no da ga--
That was why he never learned any better, he just kept finding a firm foothold on the solid ground of reality, tying the reinforced elastic rope of rational thought around one leg, and repeatedly bungee jumping--

Note: The author is making an extended metaphor in which Saladin is the "abyss" that Lucifard keeps "bungee jumping" into (i.e. kissing'n'stuff) while trying to remain anchored to "reality" (insisting he's straight). He may take an experimental dive every once in a while, but he doesn't want to fall in for good.

"Tokoro de batsu geemu ni kyouryoku shite itadaita daishou no koto na n'desu ga..."
"By the way, about the reimbursement for your cooperation with the dare..."

Note: The term batsu geemu is used for any game in which losing comes with some kind of penalty. Here I used "dare" in the sense of the game "truth or dare." The participants in the poker game that I mentioned in the introduction had wagered particular risky tasks rather than wagering money. Saladin was not at all pleased to have his rear fondled for the sake of a game, and he was about to use the offender as a test subject to see if he could cause impotence with his acupuncture needles. Lucifard is currently attempting to "sacrifice himself" in order to save his friend from such a fate.

--Genjitsu ninshiki no gamban yooshi. Risei no kyouka gomu roopu yooshi. Yuuki to kakugo no ashi no souchaku kigu yooshi. Ijou, shinen taisaku santen yubisashi anzen tenken yooshi.
--Awareness of the solid ground of reality, check. The reinforced elastic rope of rational thought, check. The leg attachment gear of bravery and resolve, check. This concludes the inspection of the three safety elements for dealing with the abyss.

"Anata no baai wa dou shimashou nee. Ima no tokoro, hoka ni tameshite mitai tsubo mo arimasen shi, o-cha de mo nominagara hanashiai de kimemashou ka."
"What shall I do with you, hmm? At the moment, I don't have any other acupuncture points I wish to test, so shall we discuss the matter over tea to decide?"

  1. ima no tokoro = "at the moment"
  2. tsubo = "acupuncture point" (also used for acupressure); these are certain points on the body where the insertion of a needle (or the application of pressure, in the case of acupressure) has a specific physiological effect.

Nani o houshuu ni suru to omoshiroi darou to kangaenagara, Saradin ga se o mukeru.
Thinking about what payment would be interesting, Saladin turned his back.

Aite ga yudan shita tokoro o mihakaratte--jampu!
Judging the moment the opponent let his guard down--jump!</i>

Note: The word yudan is the kind of carelessness that comes from feeling completely secure. It is when one lets one's guard down, believing there is no danger.

Rushifaado wa ryoute o nobashi, haigo kara Saradin no karada o dakishimeru to, migite de ago o tsukande uemukaseta.
Lucifard extended both hands and, embracing Saladin from behind, grabbed his [Saladin's] jaw with his right hand and raised it.


  1. Saladin was starting to say Lucifard's rank (which I am translating as captain, but I know very little about military ranks).
  2. The small tsu at the end is not really a sound, but more of a glottal stop. It is used to indicate that the person broke off abruptly.

Odoroku koe ga katagoshi no kisu de togireru.
His surprised voice was cut off by the over-the-shoulder kiss.

Totsuzen no boukyo ni odoroita no darou ga, teikou wa nakatta.
He was probably surprised by the sudden reckless action, but there was no resistance.

Keikai ni kowabatta karada kara sugu ni chikara ga nukete hidarite ga agari, ushiro ni tatsu Rushifaado no kubi ni mawasareru. Atama ga hikiyoserarete, kuchizuke ga yori fukakunatta.
The body that had tensed warily soon relaxed and his left hand came up, curling around the neck of Lucifard who stood behind him. His head was pulled closer, and the kiss deepened.

Yohodo taichou no warui toki de nakereba, sake ni yotta koto no nai Rushifaado datta ga, Houraijin to no kisu wa saikoukyuu no sake yori sensai de shitazawari ga yoku, sugu ni meitei joutai ni ochiiru hodo noukou de, ajiwau hashi kara kawaite motomezu ni irarenai.
Lucifard had never gotten drunk on alcohol unless he was feeling very poorly to begin with, but the Immortal's kiss was more delicate and felt better against his tongue than the finest drink; it was so rich that he immediately sank into a state of intoxication, and the moment he tasted it he couldn't help thirsting for more.

  1. yohodo = "very"; also written yoppodo
  2. ~ toki de nakereba = "if it was not at a time when ~ "; literally, this sentence would read "Lucifard had never gotten drunk if it was not at a time when he was feeling very poorly," but that's pretty awkward.
  3. ~ hashi kara = "as soon as one ~ "/"the very moment one ~ "
  4. -zu ni wa irarenai = "can't help -ing"
  5. The final clause would literally be "The very moment he tasted it, he thirsted, and he couldn't help desiring it." In other words, taking one sip wasn't enough to quench his thirst, he still wanted more.

(Deleted comment)
26th-Oct-2006 11:34 am (UTC)
Out of curiousity, do you post any study hints for those taking 2級

The manga excerpts feature many level 2 points, but they're all in the explanatory notes that accompany the translations. There are also a long list of level 2 grammar points on the "Japanese Tips" page that is included in the community links, they just aren't labeled as such because other levels are mixed in with them. I only do "grammar point of the day" items for level 1, because that's the only study guide I own.

Of course, anyone is welcome to ask questions at any time about grammar points or vocabulary they find troubling or would like to see in context. I do take requests.

who aren't interested in manga?

If you're not interested in manga or novels, I'm afraid this isn't the right community for you. This community is specifically geared toward learning by reading, as it says in the community name and the info page description.
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