Full Metal Panic! - Volume 4 - Chapter Aft

The Afterword, or Middle-word  
Thank you for waiting. Although we had to finally split up the story into two volumes, we present to you the first volume of “Ending Day-by-Day”. I know that for students who are just getting by on what little pocket money they have, two volumes aren’t very cost-efficient. Nevertheless, it had to be so for various reasons, my lack of ability and unavoidable reasons- please forgive me. I’m sorry.  
This volume is kind of like an interval episode, really focused on the settling of the ITB affair, situations within Mithril, hijinx of school life, as well as the not-so-normal drama. The title is “Ending Day by Day”, but really this series doesn’t seem like it’s going to end. Different from the short stories, the long story of Sousuke and the others is changing. With this and that. But it’s still a little early for the sudden changes.  
However, if you reread this story- everyone’s feelings are strangely on the edge. Character after character appears displeased about one thing after another, being irritated and irrational. No, it’s not really because the author, me, is upset.  
By the way, the Admiral Jerome Borda in the story actually was a soldier in real life (several years ago he died “fairly depressed in a suicide”) that I’m using as a model. But for those who knew him, please think of him as a different person for the time being. A model up to his death, he’s the product of the imprudent wild ideas of the author who says “what if he lived in the Full Metal Panic universe?” I only guessed his personality and way of talking from the stories of people who knew him.  
I want to get the next volume out as soon as possible, but I think it will be early next year at best. Too slow? No, I’m really 
sorry about it. Please be patient, and somehow continue with them on their journey.  
Since I’m not finished yet, thanks for letting me get this far this time.  
Sousuke, who’s stretching himself out. The evil that is drawing near to Kaname. The appearance of the real enemies. Will the two be able to meet again in the end?  
The comeback of “but, ‘dammit~’...” and such of the people who are reading the short stories will be put in the next volume. So forget about it for the time being, okay?  
I’ll save the thanks until the next volume. Until then, please follow along with Sousuke into hell again next time.  
- Shinji Gatou 
October 2000 
Translator’s Afterword: 
Thanks for all the interest in these translations. I found these novels browsing through the local bookstore near my apartment when I lived in Japan last year. I had loved both the anime and manga series, so I decided to try the novels out because I wanted to know what else happens. This novel in particular looked interesting (mainly because it picked up where the first season left off). I had never read a Japanese novel before, so I decided to type out my translations because I would understand it better. I really had no intention of releasing it because I thought, “not many people will want to read it because it doesn’t have pictures,” but Mukanshin convinced me otherwise, so here it is. So a special thanks goes to him. 
This first novel has taken me almost six months to complete, although the latter half went pretty quickly after I became acquainted with everything that was going on. I will go ahead and apologize for mistakes I made- there are a few, and I know there will be more. I just wish I were able to give this story the excellent standard of translation I think it deserves, but hopefully this one hasn’t been too bad to read. Between having to look up the names of real weapons, fictional weapons, foreign words, etc, etc, this has turned into quite a little project, but one I’ve been more than glad to do (and at the expense of my other projects ^^;;). Anyway, look forward to the continuation of the story in the next volume. 
2004, Brandi  

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