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Chapter 1: Act 1: Scene 1

  • While it's a little late to explain this to you now, Onigashima is part of the island nation known as Jakoku, particularly a land where many foreigners live.
  • The Eto (palace capital) shogunate that rules Jakoku essentially reject foreigners and so impose a so-called national isolation policy; negotiating with foreigners at only this Onigashima as an exception is the current status of trade being carried out.
  • One of the things about this Onigashima to begin with is the former Izasa magistrate, Octo Gaou, who also possessed foreign blood----.
  • Huh? Oh, really? A history lesson isn’t needed?
  • Then let’s cut to the chase.
  • In any event, it was situation where numerous foreigners and those descended from them resided in Onigashima and here in Enbizaka at its center.
  • Many mercantile establishments have since been built atop the hill of Enbizaka. The largest mercantile establishments here would be the Freezis trade house--yes, that’s right. You were living here with yours friends at that trading house just a year ago.
  • At the end of the year four years ago, a large fire struck Enbizaka...... I remember it happened right next to that Freezis trade house.
  • At that time, the hostess of a tailor shop, Sudou Kayo, was still sixteen years old. She had a boy with the husband she married at the beginning of the year, her work as a seamstress she took over from her deceased mother finally beginning to take off.
  • ...... Yes, the couple was on good terms.
  • Kayo loved her husband and her husband loved Kayo.
  • From what I could keenly see from within the scissors, they were very affectionate with each other.
  • But that day, while her husband went out, Kayo was in the tailor shop with her son, the two of them.
  • It was another rather late night but she still continued her tailoring work.
  • Because it was a huge request from Oyuka-san of the hairpin shop living next door to the two.
  • Casting a sideways glance at her beautiful blond baby sleeping on the futon--.
  • Yes, that’s right. That boy Kayo gave birth to had blond hair.
  • Although it was somewhat strange since Kayo’s hair color was a beautiful black and her husband had purple hair, since the couple were descended from foreigners, there was probably an owner of blond hair among one of their ancestors.
  • Actually, it was because there were other parents who had children of different hair colors in Onigashima.
  • Anyhow, even while checking the state of her child, Kayo wore a monocle for her work, which was to repair small holes made in a shallow violet kimono.
  • While doing that, her husband came in, going pale with a start.
  • Husband: “Hey, Kayo. What are you doing?”
  • Kayo: “Oh, it’s you. You ask what I’m doing but can’t tell by looking that I’m working?”
  • Husband: “That’s not it. There’s a fire.”
  • Kayo: “...... What, oh my.”
  • Husband: “The fire’s approaching from the trading house on the hill. We’ll burn to death if we don’t flee quickly.”
  • While he was Kayo’s husband, despite his identity originally being the child of a samurai...... no, that might’ve been the reason why; he wasn’t as able as a [prodigality/debauchery] since his teens and so was disowned and later adopted as the Sudou family’s son-in-law.
  • There were a variety of scars on his body from countless quarrels and play fights from a young age, so the people who didn’t know often mistook his terrible physique for him being a [chivalrous/heroic] person.
  • How in the world Kayo could fall in love with such a man......
  • Well anyhow, since her husband had been out to one place after the other without effect, drunk, that night, he quickly notice the fire coming their direction.
  • Now that Kayo was no longer concentrating so hard on her work, she could notice the noisiness outside and the fire quickly approaching the neighboring homes already.
  • Kayo prepared to flee from her home with great haste. With her child in her arms, Kayo [basically rushed to get things and took her mother’s scissors keepsake].
  • Husband: “There. We’ll flee to the other side of the hill’s bridge.”
  • Kayo’s husband called out to her while raising his left hand out. Although there were burn marks on his hand, they weren’t wounds suffered from the fire back then.
  • When he was 15, he made a move on the blacksmith’s wife and her furious husband pressed an iron rod to his hand, burning him.
  • While the man was absolutely no good, [demon basically defends him for at least not cheating on Kayo]. On only this point can I say he was a reasonable human being.
  • At this point, he was also desperate to protect Kayo and their son; as if trying to protect them from the fire, he walked from behind as they rushed to the hill.
  • Passing over the twin arched bridge(?) on the hill...... in other words, they believed they would be safe for the time being if they went over the flowing river below it.
  • However, [the bridge wasn’t wide enough for so many people all thinking of doing that and ended up clogging up the path].
  • While they did so, the fire was looming closer and closer. Kayo said such while watching this.
  • Kayo: “Dear. Oyuka-san’s hairpin shop’s on fire.”
  • Husband: “Yes, it is.”
  • Kayo: “I wonder if the Oyukas are safe......”
  • Husband: “[something about a teahouse]. They gave me their delicious manjuu for a while. Even gave you you’re favorite tuna takoyaki...... anyhow, we won’t be able to go with all these people in front of us.”
  • Kayo: “If you would grow wings from your back, we’d be able to fly......  you always brag how you can do that, Dear.”
  • Husband: “It’s not bragging. I really can soar through the open sky. I just usually hide it.”
  • Kayo: “Well now, wouldn’t this be the time to use that power?”
  • Husband: “...... No. At any rate, right now, I won’t be able to escape with the both of you. My wings won’t be strong enough to fly with that burden.”
  • Kayo: “Yeah, yeah--it’s gotten considerably hotter. Let’s move, quickly.”
  • While referring to the imminent danger, they were having a pretty carefree conversation.
  • Those two were always like this.
  • It was precisely because they both possessed such similar temperaments that these two might’ve been drawn to each other.
  • [Space]
  • But of course, they didn’t have much faith in the forest given the circumstances.
  • The burning houses around them were likely about to collapse now, didn’t even question whether they would fall atop the crowd in time.
  • ...... And then, it actually happened.
  • It was this moment.
  • Where Kayo and her family’s situation dramatically changed in a flash.
  • I was, at the time, screaming and flailing about, though no one could hear my cries.
  • She apparently saw a burning house coming down on them.
  • Kayo: “Aaagh!”
  • Thrusting away, Kayo struggled to hold onto her baby while the burning wooden pillar was coming down on top of them.
  • It didn’t directly strike her body but Kayo couldn’t move since her foot was stuck under the pillar.
  • Kayo: “Ah, hot, hot!”
  • While Kayo was screaming at the feeling of her foot burning, getting out of there somehow wasn’t going well.
  • Baby: “Waaahhh, waaaahh!”
  • Her son in her arms was crying too.
  • Kayo looked at her trapped leg.
  • The pillar was burning and crackling.
  • The fire would clearly spread to her body soon.
  • Additionally, there was a pile of rubble of countless burning houses behind her.
  • --Kayo suddenly noticed her husband was there buried under them.
  • In order to protect his wife from the falling debris, he thrust himself in the way.
  • Kayo: “Dear! Dear!”
  • Kayo screamed at the burning rubble but there was no reply.
  • Still, she kept calling for her husband.
  • But, the foot of the fire spread to Kayo’s kimono in the meantime......
  • Before long, it consumed her whole body.
  • “Aaagghh!!”
  • Kayo made different kinds of screams from earlier.
  • The fire continued to burn Kayo’s legs, arms, and face.
  • Kayo’s reputably beautiful face became ugly with burns as I watched and watched.
  • Whether she thought of the heat of the flames going along her body or of her husband.
  • Kayo screamed for a long time, and soon--.
  • She fainted.
  • [Space]
  • For me, I don’t have any arms or legs.
  • So I could only just watch in this state.
  • The moon shining in the sky.
  • The fire’s focus looked to be reaching up to there.
  • Even the birds dancing in the night sky seemed to be burned.
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