Hello, hello everyone. It’s Kinugasa, the world’s biggest fan of Ume Chazuke, served with green tea poured over it. (Rice Soup With Japanese Pickled Plums)
First of all, please take note that this is the first time the special exam has spanned for more than one volume. I wanted to write about the other students scattered about the island, but before I knew it, I had already hit the page limit. I’m really starting to feel the limits on how much a single volume can permit.
Back when I first started writing, I’d think to myself: “It’d be fine if I went a couple of pages over the limit, right? What’s the big deal?” Despite that optimism, most of the time I’m struggling to fit everything in. Why can’t they just make an exception for You-Zitsu and let me write over 500 pages per… No no, I’ll stop. That would probably just end up with me injuring myself in vain. I’d probably be just fine with a 50 page increase instead!
Alright alright. Sorry for the lengthy preamble here, but I’ve only gone o~n~e page for the afterword this time.
Honestly, I feel like we’d be perfectly fine without an afterword. Is there really anyone out there dying to read these anyway? I wonder this all the time, but I imagine it’s really annoying for the reader if the very next page after finishing the story is the afterword without any blank pages to space it out. (That being said, there simply aren’t enough pages, so it can’t be helped.)
While the end of 2020 is now in sight, I’ll continue working hard to finish off the year! Until next time!
1 From here on out, I will be using 『I』『I’m』『My』and other similar terms to refer to when Nanase uses ‘boku’ instead of her usual ‘watashi’. It will be far more natural to read that way, and I won’t need to leave translation notes every time she does it moving forward. If you ever see me using these brackets around one of her terms, it’s me signalling that she’s speaking with boku. Just a heads up.
2 There are two anime references in this part. The first to Mobile Suit Gundam, and the second to some anime/work that I’m not sure of. I spent a few hours asking around my Japanese friends and through many websites and it’s not clear what reference Dashu Sea Chicken is making. “Sea Chicken” is a brand of Tuna in Japan, but that’s not enough to make it clear what’s happening here. Who knows honestly.
3 I looked up a bit of information about Beach Flags, since I had never heard of it before. I translated a few pages out of a Japanese dictionary that spoke about it:
ビーチフラッグス (English: Beach Flags) is an Australian life-saving sporting event performed by lifeguards meant to train various skills essential to their practice, such as their running speed and reflexes. It is sometimes performed in recreational contexts that don’t emphasize lifeguarding skill. The sport is usually performed on beaches and such in which several players contend with each other for flags, of which there are less than the number of participants. The distance from the starting line to the flags is usually 20 meters, and competitors start out by laying prone on the ground with their back facing the flags.
It’s highly akin to musical chairs, in that the person who does not get a flag is eliminated and then one flag is taken away and it repeats like that until there’s a winner. If you’re interested, I found a video of it here. Personally, I can’t fathom the sport, but I guess it’s more common in Japan than America. Who knows.