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As of 2021 July 28th big update, a new prologue has replaced the old one, which players saw first when they started the game from the launch until the start of the big update. The old prologue is still available in the game as part of the Main Story "Strange Tale of Literature" (文学奇譚).

The old prologue can be found in Office (司書室) → Register (図鑑) → Recollections Register (回想図鑑). In the Recollections Register open up the middle tab Stories (物語), and go to the last page where yellow-labeled banner Special Recollections (特別回想) can be found. There should be recollection named Old Prologue (旧プロローグ) behind the banner.

Introduction

たとひ魂は砕けても、想いは砕けない
Though a soul may perish, its feelings shall never fade away
*A quote from Akutagawa Ryuunosuke's "Aphorisms of a Pygmy".


どこかの時点で違う歴史を歩み始めた日本……
平和で、近代風情が長く漂うこの時代に
多様な思想を生み出す文学書が人々に個性と意思を与えてきた。

しかし―
突如、文学書が全項黒く染まってしまう異常現象が発生、
次第にそれらの文学書は、最初から無かったかのように
人々の記憶からも奪われ始める。

それは負の感情から生まれた
「本の中の世界を破壊する侵蝕者」
によりもたらされた災禍だった。

それに対処するべく、
特殊能力者アルケミストと呼ばれる者が
国の図書の全てを扱う国定図書館に派遣された。
彼らは特務司書として文学書を守るため、
文学の持つ力を知る文豪を転生、
彼等の力を使い侵蝕者達を追伐する。


At a certain point in time, Japan’s history diverged.
In this peaceful era filled with modern elegance,
literary works have brought forth many ideologies and given the people individuality and purpose.

However...
Suddenly, an abnormal phenomenon occurred; literary works have all been dyed black,
and one after another, the people’s memories of them are starting to be stolen away,
as if those works have never existed.

It was beings borne out of negative emotions,
"Taints created in order to destroy the worlds inside books"
who brought about this tragedy.

To deal with them,
a special ability holder called an ‘alchemist’,
was dispatched to the National Library, which holds the entire nation’s books.
These special librarians, in order to protect literary works,
can transmigrate the very writers who have mastered the power of literature,
and use that power to cleanse the Taints.

Prologue

Chief Librarian icon.png

Welcome to the Imperial Library. I'm glad you came, compatriot!

Chief Librarian icon.png

...... Whoa, hold on, my greetings are all messed up!
I am in charge of managing this library. Feel free to call me Chief Librarian!

Cat icon.png

I am a cat who relays directives from the country. I do not have a nyame yet...... *
The cat refers to himself as "wagahai", the same word used in Natsume Souseki's book "I am a Cat." In fact, the entire second sentence is a reference to the book.

Chief Librarian icon.png

...... Well, no need to sweat the small stuff.
Sorry for having you come over in a hurry like this, but how about we inform you about your duties from now on?

Cat icon.png

I do believe you know this already, but......
Occurrences of literature undergoing corrosion due to "Taints" here are becoming more frequent, and the situation is getting quite serious.

Chief Librarian icon.png

When a book is fully corroded, not just the words written in it,
But peoples' memories of it are also erased from existence.

Cat icon.png

A solution is currently being researched to get at the root of the problem, however, in the meantime, the Taints are advancing.

Chief Librarian icon.png

It's a shame...... But for now, the only thing left we can do is to purify the literature that the Taints have settled in.

Cat icon.png

Moreover, it is necessary to "book delve" into the problematic literature and directly deal with the Taints, so......
Your powers as an "alchemist" are key, and we'll be having you use them quite liberally.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Your first mission is to use your power to call upon an existence who can delve into literature.
... Then, let us head to the book delve room.



Cat icon.png

This room is where you can perform a "delve."
Only those with the powers of an alchemist are ameowed to enter.

Chief Librarian icon.png

First of all, how about we summon a soul who has strong emotions which may be able to purify the Taints?

Cat icon.png

That's right, since living beings like you are incapable of book delves.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Those who are capable of book delves must exist as souls, and on top of that, they must have strong emotions towards literature.

Cat icon.png

Also, the books in which souls with strong emotions reside, we call "ensouled books."

Chief Librarian icon.png

Actually, we have an ensouled book here......
We'd like you to transmigrate the soul inside by summoning it.

Cat icon.png

The Chief Librarian is also an alchemist, but his powers are just so unstable.

Chief Librarian icon.png

That last part was unnecessary!

Cat icon.png

...Well then, to repeat, to transmigrate a soul from an ensouled book, you need another soul who can delve into books.

Chief Librarian icon.png

But there's no souls to delve with right now...... There's no helping it, please do something.

Cat icon.png

There's really nyao helping it……
...... You better pet me a lot later.



Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Hahh, you found me, huh?...... I'm Tokuda Shuusei, and I don't want to get dragged into anything troublesome.



Cat icon.png

He's come home - the soul residing in this book is Tokuda Shuusei.

Chief Librarian icon.png

He is a member of the Ozaki Clan, and one of the three writers from Kanazawa.
On first glance he seems plain, but he is a writer that Kawabata Yasunari himself praised for perfecting modernized literature.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

P-plain? That's too much......
Kawabata Yasunari...... I feel like I should know him, but I can't quite remember.

Chief Librarian icon.png

So, Shuusei, so you've come to understand your situation.
For the cause of protecting literature, lend us your strength.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

...... I really have no need for such an extraordinary life, though.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Hahaha! Right after you are transmigrated, your memories and abilities are in a state of instability.
As you continue to abide in today's world, you will probably slowly regain them, so it's just temporary, yeah?

Cat icon.png

Goodness, writers are such pieces of work.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Alrighty then, next, we'll finally go to purify a book that has been corroded.
We call these "Tainted Books."

Cat icon.png

It's a shame, but I do nyat have the power to purify Taints.
In order to purify them, powerful feelings towards literature such as the ones Tokuda Shuusei here holds are key.

Chief Librarian icon.png

With that, let's be off to perform our foremost duty - purifying Tainted Books!

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Oh man, looks like I've got no right to refuse...

Chief Librarian icon.png

Fighting Taints is, after all, a battle of souls.
The writers can materialize weapons from the books they hold and cleanse the Taints.

Cat icon.png

For as long as we cannot fight, we have nyo choice but to trust him to handle it.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Wait a minute, you guys aren't going to fight...?

Chief Librarian icon.png

Sorry, Shuusei.
But rest assured, we'll help you out however we can from here.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

I can't help but feel uneasy... but once again, I get that I really have no right to refuse.
......Then, I'm off.



Cat icon.png

Oi, it looks like Shuusei's state of mind is breaking down...!

Chief Librarian icon.png

This...is bad, if his spirit isn't stable, he can't fight.
Cat, get to work! This is a major emergency!

Cat icon.png

Seriously, this is cat abuse...!



Izumi Kyouka icon.png

...Where in the world am I?

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Kyouka...? Haa, this is some help, indeed...

Izumi Kyouka icon.png

Isn't it Shuusei? What in the world is going on?
What are these things!? How filthy...!

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Leave the details for later... For now, we have to drive them off...



Izumi Kyouka icon.png

D, don't touch me with your filthy hands!!



Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

God, I somehow survived that......

Izumi Kyouka icon.png

...... I've understood the situation. So this world exists as the gap between dreams and reality.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Yeah, and they even made me go off to fight all by myself, true story bro.
...... To put your life on the line in battle...... Honestly, count me out.

Izumi Kyouka icon.png

What are you even saying, Shuusei!? It is absolutely unacceptable for literature to be lost!
As Kouyou-sensei's pupil, and as one who found their success in literature, aren't you ashamed!?

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

...... I don't want to hear that from you.

Izumi Kyouka icon.png

...... In any case, let's go back - this is not the place for such talk......



Chief Librarian icon.png

So you've returned. I'm glad we made it in time...

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Seriously, don't throw people around so recklessly!

Cat icon.png

And cats too... I hope you've prepared yourself for later.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

What would have happened if Kyouka hadn't come...! ...Ah, wait, Kyouka...?

Chief Librarian icon.png

Sorry about that……My power can't keep Izumi Kyouka's soul tethered in this world for long, and I've reached my limit.
But that doesn't mean he's disappeared, you'll meet him again soon.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

.... Hmph, is that so.

Cat icon.png

You two probably had a history, but since this guy didn't have enough power... I apolonyaize.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Does it matter if we had a history? He'll probably just dislike me more after this.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Pft...... True.

Cat icon.png

...... It didn't seem that way, though.

Chief Librarian icon.png

So, what do you think about this job?
...... I see. I'm relieved to hear that.

Cat icon.png

I believe you also understand. The future of literature is in yours and the writers' hands.

Chief Librarian icon.png

We may encounter all kinds of difficulties from here on out, but I'm positive that you'll be able to overcome them.
Let's work well together!



~To be continued~


You may enjoy the continuation to this in the "Bungo to Alchemist" main story.
Click to return to the title page.


The following Main Story recollections can be found in the game in Office (司書室), under Register (図鑑) → Recollections Register (回想図鑑) → Stories (物語) → Strange Tale of Literature Part 1 (文学奇譚 一章) and Strange Tale of Literature Part 2 (文学奇譚 二章).

Strange Tale of Literature - Part 1

Chapter 1: Welcome to the Tainted Books

*bzzzt* *bzzzt*.....................
Ahh ahh, test test. This is Ao. This is a transmission from a tainted book. Can you hear me?
Choice 1
I can.
Choice 2
I cannot.


Ao icon.png

Ao icon.png

Seeing that we have a reply coming in, we can call this "signal" a success...... Seems there are no issues.

Aka icon.png

Yo, seems it went well!

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

So people outside can hear voices from in here?

Ao icon.png

Yes, we were trying out sending words between the real world and the book world.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Is it that big of a deal?

Aka icon.png

Jeez, he just doesn't understand.

Ao icon.png

This is a significant step forward.
Telepathy between the real world and this world...... In other words, we'll be able to communicate.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

It's not really clicking with me...... So we haven't been able to do that up until now, huh?

Ao icon.png

Yes, due to various circumstances. Please have some understanding.

Aka icon.png

We are limited by whether one of us can be in a connection hotspot, though.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Hmm......

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Who even are you guys, following us all this way?

Aka icon.png

I'm Aka. I'm a much better alchemist than the Chief.

Ao icon.png

I'm Ao. I am a much better alchemist than the Chief.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Alchemist......?

Ao icon.png

That's right, as the head researchers here we go in day and night......

Writer's Block No 0 icon.png

Writer's Block No 0 icon.png

Pii…………

Aka icon.png

Uwah, such a nuisance at this timing.

Ao icon.png

As mentioned, we are mere civilians, so......

Aka icon.png

Kick 'em to the curb for us, will ya?

Chapter 2: The Battle with the Taints

Ao icon.png

Now then, seeing as how the transmission test has concluded......
Henceforth, we can begin authoritatively performing purification.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Eh, hold on......

Aka icon.png

Hm, what's up? Seems like you still got somethin' to say.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

I've got tons I wanna ask. Why are you guys here?
I was under the impressions alchemists can't delve?

Aka icon.png

You've got great memory. That's right.
Ordinarily, alchemists should be unable to exist in this world, but......

Ao icon.png

Since we are very skilled alchemists, we can.

Aka icon.png

Ao icon.png

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Can you not be lazy and actually explain, please?

Aka icon.png

Well, for now, don't sweat the small stuff.

Ao icon.png

As long as you can tell we're much better than that musty old Chief.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Oi, I'll admit that you guys are better than me, but...... your attitudes towards work are problematic.

Ao icon.png

Ah, it's Chief.

Aka icon.png

Chief's finally got connected, huh? Looks like our setup is working like a charm.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Ah, so this connects to Chief, too.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Seems like it went well. This is a huge step forward.

Chief Librarian icon.png

How is the purification going? Is it going well?
Choice 1
Exactly as planned.
Choice 2
For now.


Chief Librarian icon.png

Haha, glad to hear that.
Being able to link with you writers through Aka and Ao will open up our possibilities a lot.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Especially since from now on we've really gotta oppose those Taints.
These two and the writers will definitely be great helps to you.

Aka icon.png

Ah, it's more Taints.

Ao icon.png

Look, you guys are up. Please kill 'em dead.

Aka icon.png

Ah, and take data before you complete the purification!

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

You guys are such a handful......

Chapter 3: Purify the Tainted Book

Ao icon.png

Look, you can see far away, the letters floating up.
Choice 1
The letters are changing.
Choice 2
I can't read them.


Aka icon.png

Those are the fragments of this world that have been damaged by the Taint's attacks.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

I guess this place was originally a much more beautiful and clean place......

Ao icon.png

Unfortunately, there's not a trace of that left.

Aka icon.png

Those fragments are also becoming stains on the books in the real world, and the mutations are even becoming apparent to the average person's eyes.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

So that's why this tainted book got so black.

Aka icon.png

Righto, this is repeatedly happening to all the books throughout the entire country at the same time.

Ao icon.png

Currently, there isn't an official list of books that have been affected...

Aka icon.png

But cases of people forgetting what they were should be happening more frequently.

Ao icon.png

We're getting by like this, but if the corrosion progresses to completion, it'll be a huge problem.

Ao icon.png

Even though you remember a book, it'll have turned so black you can't read it at all.
It'll turn out so that nobody can remember what it was.

Chief Librarian icon.png

So the library is trying to prevent the corrosion by managing the aggregation of the affected books.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Originally we were just an ordinary imperial library. However, now we've become the headquarters for developing countermeasures against the corrosion phenomena.

Ao icon.png

They're running around day by day looking for books that have undergone corrosion and purifying them.

Aka icon.png

You can hold off the corrosion for the time being if you defeat the Taints, so you'd better work your butt off!

Ao icon.png

Well, this solution doesn't really get to the heart of the problem.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Can you not say things to dampen my enthusiasm, please......

Chapter 4: Chief's Orders

Chief Librarian icon.png

Well then, I think I understand the situation. We have a crisis on our hands with the increase in activity of the Taints.
Well then, I'd like you to work with these two to inspect each tainted book and cleanse them.
Choice 1
I wonder if we'll be alright...
Choice 2
(I wonder if we'll be alright...)


Aka icon.png

....What's with that face. I'm your senior in rank, so have some more respect.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Because I don't have enough power, I wasn't able to investigate more thoroughly until now. That's why I'll be depending on you.

Chief Librarian icon.png

I'll leave this place entirely to you. If you're around to command the situation, I'm sure we'll get to the bottom of this.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

Excuse me....I'd prefer not to be babysitting children.

Aka icon.png

Hey, don't treat us like kids!

Ao icon.png

Plus in all honesty, research aside, I came here to mess with you....

Chief Librarian icon.png

Don't say that. We're in a crisis, so cooperation is of utmost importance. I'd like you to work with each other.

Aka icon.png

Eh...

Chief Librarian icon.png

Plus if you resolve this Taint matter, you'll be heralded like heroes.

Aka icon.png

Ah, you've got a point...My name will forever be engraved in the history of alchemists...now that'd be nice.

Ao icon.png

Ah well...no helping it, where are we starting from?

Chief Librarian icon.png

I'd like you to research on the Taints. I want you two, as experts, to cooperate with us on our investigation. If the writers can gain more knowledge about them, too, that would be great.

Aka icon.png

Then it's my turn. Just leave the Taints to me!

Chief Librarian icon.png

It's nice that you're enthusiastic.

Aka icon.png

In return, you better do that other thing for us properly!

Chief Librarian icon.png

Alright, alright, I'll see to it that your work be reflected on your salary evaluation.
But remember to listen to the librarian.

Chief Librarian icon.png

Then, I leave the rest to you. If anything happens, call me.
*bzzt* *bzzt*................

Ao icon.png

Well then, next up is our work. Better do something before the director ends up dying from overwork.

Tokuda Shuusei icon.png

My goodness...

Chapter 5: Search for the Taints

Aka icon.png

Alrighty, first of all you'll be gathering data on the Taints. Leavin' it to ya, Tainted Book Investigator Squad.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Roger, I'll be in all of y'all's care.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

I hope we all work well together. I'm Hori Tatsuo.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

I'm Oda Sakunosuke, but y'all can call me Odasaku.

Aka icon.png

It's the first time we'll be seriously investigating into the Taints, so I'm sure with all of you guys things'll be nice and breezy.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Ah, they sure came out fast.

Writer's Block No 1 icon.png

Writer's Block No 1 icon.png

Meh............

Aka icon.png

Yup, these are exhibit A "No. 1" Taints.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

For lack of a better word, they're actually pretty cute. At first I was like, "Are we really fighting these?"

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Yeah yeah, they're so fluffy! And they're big round eyes......

Aka icon.png

If I were to liken these to something, they'd be the spirit of a "slump."
As they corrode writings, they steadily grow in size.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Ah, so they're like slumps, I sure got fond memories of those.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Fufu, if they weren't Taints, then I'd like to have one as a pet.
Choice 1
It'd be good to help relieve stress.
Choice 2
I want to use it as a pillow.


Aka icon.png

How can you guys even think that way!
Being exposed to negative emotions, will only end up in your condition going to crap.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

But really, would you just stare into those eyes! Aren't they cute?

Aka icon.png

Huh, if we're just talking looks, then I guess so......

Aka icon.png

These guys "eat" up the letters that hold up the world in a book.
Although, the amount they eat is not the big issue here.

Writer's Block No 1 icon.png

Me......

Aka icon.png

The real scary thing about these guys......
Writer's Block No 1 icon.png
#2
Writer's Block No 1 icon.png
#3

Aka icon.png

... is how they band up and ambush you!!

Chapter 6: The Ecology of the Taints

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Th-, that scared me......

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Huff, huff. Those were the eyes of a killer......

Aka icon.png

Yups! Amazing they came in such big numbers.
Just like Chief said, things have been weird lately.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Taints...... I've been wondering all this time - are they living creatures?

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

They're obviously living creatures...... Librarian, ain't they?
Choice 1
They're living creatures.
Choice 2
They're not living creatures.


Aka icon.png

In a way, you're both right. They're a body of energy with a specialized directionality called "emotions."

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

A body of energy?

Aka icon.png

Yup, emotions are a type of mental energy.
When mental energy is condensed, it takes on the shape of that emotion.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

So that peculiar ennui turned into a sheep?

Aka icon.png

Righto. Even within the numerous negative emotions, its specialized direction is strong.
And that's why it's so complicated to deal with. Just think of them as living curses.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Ah, got it, got it. Grudges are scary stuff.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Do you really get it......

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Well that, you can get it just by takin' one look into them sheeps' eyes.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Weren't you just saying earlier how big and round their eyes were......

Aka icon.png

Haha, good for me you pick up things so quick.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Kekeke, well, I'm a person who learns through my intuition.

Chapter 7: The Origin of the Tainting Phenomenon

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

It really gets at me how they bubble up all creepy and crawly.
It touches my romantic side to think that I was creating such a world when I wrote this book.

Aka icon.png

Ah, that's not exactly right.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Huh, it's not?

Aka icon.png

We're currently in this so-called 'work of literature',
but this is really composed of the general public's perception of it.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

The public's perception?

Aka icon.png

Yeah, so it's not exactly something you created.
It's simply the aggregate of the general public's impression of your work.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Is that so...

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

So we're here 'cause of the support of everyone in the whole wide world......

??? icon.png

Wa...... What...

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Eh, what did you just say?

Burning Jealousy No 1 icon.png

Burning Jealousy No 1 icon.png

Ke...... Nai......

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Uwah, I was wondering who that was!

Aka icon.png

That's a (No. 2). This guy attacks by throwing lumps of energy, so watch out.

Burning Jealousy No 1 icon.png

Ke... i......

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Hmmm, this 'un sure don't tickle my fancy. The way he makes like he's 'boutta take off strikes me the wrong way.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Haha, Odasaku-san, you're quite harsh......

Aka icon.png

Oi...... How can you see the Taint's true form?

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Hmm, how can I say this......

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

No, I don't really know, but when ya get up close and personal you kinda get that feelin'...... ain't that right?

Burning Jealousy No 1 icon.png

Wa......

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Ah, it's coming!

Chapter 8 (Part 1): The World of Literature

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Seeing as Taint-sans are wiggling out into one spot here,
Must mean our works are just that interesting!

Aka icon.png

Not sure if it has to do with how interesting they are, but it's true that this is rare.

Aka icon.png

A scene with the imaginings, floatings, and carvings of thoughts into the heart...

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

There was also a scene that would be unbelievable in reality......

Aka icon.png

Up until now, we still haven't found a medium containing such a world of imagination other than literature.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

...... Hold 'em horses, that's the first I've heard of literature being of any importance.
I just don't know how to react......

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

I am also a bit conflicted. Even though it's a compliment...

Aka icon.png

Why, man? It's contributing to furthering the cause of alchemy! It's the highest of praises, you know.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

I get it alright, but the thought "I'm glad literature can be put to practical use!" has never crossed my mind before, so...

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

Ummm, are there any other books that could be made to delve into?

Aka icon.png

Hmmm, I've never asked before.
But a long time ago, an alchemist was making his memories into a book.
A recorded world only he could see, and it seems that was how he protected the secrets of his own research.

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

That's quite convenient.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Well I'll be, that's amazing! He'd never forget it then, ain't that peachy!

Aka icon.png

Of course! What did you think alchemy was in the first place!

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Feels awkward to say it out loud, but it seemed a bit sketchy......

Aka icon.png

Hahhh, good lord. That's the problem with plebs.

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Stuupid! Of course I'd think that way if I never knew about that!

Aka icon.png

Don't make fun of it! Alchemy is a proper science!

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Librarian, is that true?
Choice 1
Umm......
Choice 2
Uhh......


Aka icon.png

Why're you stuttering!

Hori Tatsuo icon.png

...... Everyone, let's discuss this later. I've been feeling a clearly different presence since just before.

The Plagiarist icon.png

The Plagiarist icon.png

Aka icon.png

That's...... Ro No.17!

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Alrighty, it's our turn at bat! Bring it on!

The Plagiarist icon.png

Oda Sakunosuke icon.png

Oi, don't go ignoring us!!

Aka icon.png

Chase after and purify 'em!

Chapter 8 (Part 2): Victory

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O..., mane...ru...... shika...... nai

The Plagiarist icon.png

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We did it!

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How's about it, did we strike some fear into y'all's hearts!

Chapter 9: Alchemy and The Alchemist

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Ha, you guys...... You seriously don't even know how to spell the "al" in alchemy.

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Can ya not be disappointed in us for no reason?

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Hey, now...... This is a good chance, so would you please teach us?

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God, there's no getting around it. It's not like I wanted it to have such a sketchy and occult image.
I'll explain in full, from the top.

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Ah...... Sensei? Can ya keep it short and punchy?

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Listen up, alchemy is the knowledge of how to take hold of the "notions" of things.

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Those who can take a hold of those "notions" are called alchemists.
Back then they used to be called stuff like wizards and divinators.

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Magic, huh......

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Fortune-telling, huh......
Choice 1
Occult......
Choice 2
O...carina...?


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NO! Anyway, you're calling it occult and all, but even the magicians and fortune-tellers from long ago used legitimate methodology based on the scientific method which sublimated from a composite interpretation obtained through utilizing mutual workings of the mind to thoroughly scrutinize a mechanism of action arising from the two dimensions: material and psychological, formulated by thought experiments on natural phenomena on the microscopic level!

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Ah, Teach! Pardon, but I gots a question!

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What's up, Student 1?

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What did you mean by taking hold of a "notion"?

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It's to see through to the true essence of something.

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I don't really get it......

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Well then Student 2, when you hear the word "apple," what kind of stuff pops into your head?

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Um...... that they're red......

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Mmhm. Student 3, what else?
Choice 1
They're round and weighty......
Choice 2
They look delicious......


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Yup, that's the notion of an "apple". You can also call it your sense or impression of something.

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Those notions traveling through our mental power and mental energies allow us to see things that cannot be seen, among other things,
just like now how those outside can hear what we're talking about.

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You can make the things before your eyes move, read minds, and ultimately even transmigrate humans.

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Well I'll be darned.

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So the research into these operations is alchemy.
Our end goal is to reduce it down to "chemistry" so that the commonfolk can make use of it.

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How nice, it's kind of dreamy.

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Riiiight? Originally I was doing research on all kinds of stuff, y'know......
But I've got no such free time to do so now, with these Taint occurrences......

Chapter 10: An Alchemist's Power

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Teach, yer an alchemist too, ain'tcha?

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I'd appreciate it if you chose your words more carefully, I'm a superior alchemist!

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What can superior alchemists such as yer amazing self do?

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Fufufu...... Don't be surprised when you hear this......

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I can see three seconds into the future!

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...... That's it?

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Sh-shut up!
If I try I can see a bit farther into the future, but I was banned from doing so by Chief.

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Hmmm, that doesn't seem very useful.

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Nuh-uh. For example, you'll never lose at rock paper scissors!

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You'll never lose at rock paper scissors, huh...... When you put it like that, I'm just a little bit jealous.

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Right? So if you know any good ways to make money, tell it here! I'll even pay you an idea fee for the trouble!

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...... You're definitely abusing this power.
Choice 1
Think and then show us.
Choice 2
I want to see you do it!


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Oh, good one! I'll see if I can guess what's going to happen next!

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Hmm......

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Kekeke......

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Odasaku-san, what are you trying to do?
Choice 1
I'm excited!
Choice 2
My heart's thumping!


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It's a Taint, A-4!

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Eh?

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Look, behind you, behind you!

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Well milk the cows and slap me silly!

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Don't let your guard down. Half-hearted attacks won't get through to this one. Get 'im in one shot, just one!

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Kebaka... sekeoofa...... avafupi... oboi......

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Choice 1
Kebaka?
Choice 2
Avafupi?


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Gyeh!

Chapter 11: Notion of a Taint

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Whew, that sure flew me into a panic......

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Whaddya think about my alchemist power!
Choice 1
Amazing......
Choice 2
So cool......


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Guess I got no choice but to accept it, once you've shown us and all......

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Yes, when a Taint really did pop out of hiding, I got freaked out in multiple ways.

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That guy just comes outta nowhere so you gotta be careful.

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That fella sure was annoyin'. What I could tell, it had a sorta stubbornness to 'im.

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It felt like it was tightening its guard.

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You all see things so differently......

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That one's notion shell is very stiff and difficult to pierce. So take care.

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Eh, so Taints are also notions?

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Of course, everything includes a notion as a framework underneath.

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I don't really catch your drift, but I guess the Taints are about the same as an apple then.

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Only for abstract objects without substance, that is.

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To get a hold of abstract notions is even hard for an alchemist.
That's why you guys are doing some amazing stuff...... Not as amazing as me, though.
Choice 1
Amazing......
Choice 2
So cool......


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Kekeke, what are ya goin' on about, Librarian? Look who's talking! I'll get all shy!

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Hahaha......

Chapter 12 (Part 1): Pursue the Taints

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Speakin' of, Teach, why do Taints huddle up in literature?

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Great question, Student 1. That's a riddle we are desperately trying to solve.

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Huh......

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No help for it, Taints and the world of literature have both been discovered only in recent years.

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So this is only the beginning of our research......

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There's definitely meaning behind the fact that such extensive worlds of notions exist only in the literature within all the multitudes of books.

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But to elucidate that will take......

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To elucidate that will take......

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Insight, which we don't have.
Choice 1
Insight, which we don't have.
Choice 2
I feel like that's not the only thing we're missing.


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Well, whatevs!
I, a true genius, will solve it for you right now and burn my name into the annals of history! *
Possibly refers to a quote which Sakaguchi Ango was believed to have carved onto his school desk

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Eh, did you see that in your future......?

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Uh, somehow I don't think so......

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Pipipi

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Pipi

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Uwah, what's that! I've never seen that!

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Pi

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Ah, hold on!

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Hold your horses, where ya goin', teach!

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He sure goes fast......

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Uwahhhhhhhhhh!
Choice 1
Watch out!
Choice 2
...... It's a Taint!


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Let's go!

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We gotta save him!

Chapter 12 (Part 2): Rescue

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Th... w... ld... is... I... am...... evil...

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Ooh.

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Ooooh......

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Are you alright!?

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I wasn't ready for that...... I'm gonna barf......

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Must be the Taints' influence. There's no point even if ya can predict the future.

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Shut up......
Choice 1
Let's go back for now.
Choice 2
Let's get him to a doctor.


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Yes, we've already purified this book, so......

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Ugh, I feel like crap......


Strange Tale of Literature - Part 2

Chapter 13: The World of Literature

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...... I see. So when you lost sight of Aka......

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Yup. Now Hori-kun's lookin' after him.
Seems he saw some stuff that shouldna been sawn, heard some stuff that shouldna been heard.

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A textbook case of symptoms of an unsound mind. On top of that, his nausea and fatigue should continue for three days and three nights.

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Golly, it's 'cause he launched himself at'em Taints like that! Thank heavens we swooped in and saved him.

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Aka loses all his discernment when he sets his eyes upon his research subjects. This isn't the first time he's been gotten the best of by some Taints, you know.
Choice 1
He sure causes a lot of trouble......
Choice 2
Glad things can finally get quiet around here.

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Hey, your true thoughts are leaking out of your mouth right now.

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Whatever it is, I'm sure glad he's alright. We'll nurse him right on back to health, so I'll leave the rest to ya.

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So we'll take you along and continue the investigation, huh. Oi Ao, stop dawdling around.

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I'm not. Also, I don't want to conduct investigations in such a chilly place.

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...... Why that's right! Aka said summn' that caught my attention back there.
"Find a special something that belongs only to literature".

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...... Something that belongs only to literature? Did he mean, the reason that only literature has concept worlds in books?

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Now that I say it, the Taints coming is also because there's something to do with literature, right?

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I see. The life energy the Taints hold are reacting with the unique elements that literature is composed of.

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...... So, what is it that is unique to literature?

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That's a tough question......

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Something only literature has...... Beautiful Japanese, maybe?

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Think about it seriously, please. Are you guys really literary masters?

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Hmm, but even so...... I can't really define what exactly "literature" is in the first place.

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Yeah, there were always passionate disputes over what exactly "true literature" is, after all.
It got so bad they were called the Literature Wars.

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Anyway, this question isn't one that should be answered by just us in one go...... Can we go ask what the others think?

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...... If you must. Anyway, the definition of what literature exactly is is paramount.
As we continue to defeat the Taints, can I have you discuss it among yourselves?

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Got it, I'll go ask.

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Then Satou-san, I'll go call some random people over.

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What is literature, huh...... Seems like this discussion'll get a bit messy.

Chapter 14: Naturalism

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Wow, so because of all that, the question became "What exactly is literature", huh?

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Yes, we're going around asking different people. It might give us a hint to grasping the true form of these Taints.

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I see. There must be a reason that they specifically are drawn towards literature, after all.

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Yes, that's right. I thought it would be prudent to ask those of the Naturalist School first of all.

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Oi oi, stop that! You're making me all embarrassed!

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So that's why I'd like to ask you to spare me some time.

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...... I don't have much to offer in this discussion.
Katai is definitely more knowledgeable on this than I am, since he's the king of the Naturalists.

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...... What's Naturalism?

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Ah, that's right. There are different approaches to writing, and this is simply one of them.

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Yup, so for Naturalists, it's important to write what's going on inside of yourself without altering it.

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Without altering it?

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As in, even including the lame parts or parts you don't want others to see. So it places emphasis on reality.

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The novels up until then had been full of stereotypical character archetypes and conveniently clever stories.
I wanted to change it to something with more relatable themes that were easy to understand.

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Yeah, that's right! This guy wrote a non-fiction story about how he fell for one of the female pupils living at his house and got spectacularly rejected.
It was a huge freaking hit!

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A love story, huh?

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That's right, and in the climax, he was wailing and sniffing the girl's bed from the shock of being rejected.

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"I held it to my face and inhaled the scent of that nostalgic woman to my heart's content."

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Oh my G-..................

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(..... yeaaaaah.......)

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Everyone saw how gritty I was and thought they wanted to live true to themselves like me!
They wanted to face themselves with that deep of a conviction. Ain't it awesome?

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I see, so Tayama-san, you're a pervert.

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Hey, wait! I can't leave you thinking that!!!

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Pfft...... A pervert, huh......
Choice 1
What's wrong with being a pervert?
Choice 2
A knightly pervert.
Choice 3
Humans are all perverts.

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...... See, Librarian understands me. Yeah, that's right! All humans are perverts!

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Well, every person has one or two things they can't tell anyone, right?
Before Katai did it, nobody dared to write honestly about their feelings.

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There are many things in this world that won't let you be just who you are and that you can't tell anybody, I guess.

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Yes, so don't deceive yourself. To say that you're okay just as you are is exactly what I was aiming for!
So as a result, my writings which depict the awful parts of human nature, came to be acknowledged as true literature!

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Huh...... I don't really get it, but I suppose pervertedness saved the world.

Chapter 15: Aestheticism

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What Tayama-san said was quite easy to understand. So literature is when a pervert writes a diary, huh?

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Hey wait a hot second there, we've only asked one person! It's too early to draft a conclusion!
Yes, that is but one aspect of novels......

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You must gaze upon the whole picture!

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Um.... you are......?

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I am Tanizaki Junichirou of the Aesthetics...... Pleased to make your acquaintance.

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Tanizaki, you sure came outta nowhere.

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I happened to eavesdrop upon your conversation.
What is literature...... My, haven't you stumbled upon quite the exciting topic of discussion!

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Yeah, since you're here and all, how about we ask you as well?

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Fufu......
Just now, Tayama-san said "True literature is depicting the depravity of human nature!", right?
I would dare to suggest that it is only a one-dimensional consideration...... That is what I was thinking.

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So you're dissatisfied with that conclusion...... is what you're saying.

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Yes. There isn't enough romantic fascination in it!
Humans...... No, women, are more bewitching, beautiful, and cunning creatures!

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Are you also one of the Perverts?

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Oi, that's rude!

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Fufu, that's correct. It may be that there is nobody who can come close to the sensitive way I depict women...... Right, Haruo-san?

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I refuse to comment!

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In any case, one tires quickly of a world written just as it is.
People desire works that tell of things that would never happen in reality, such as destined meetings.
The crossing paths of your destined woman...... The mutual attraction...... That world of an enticing and seductive aesthetic is what the people need!
Choice 1
Delusions are great.
Choice 2
I love beautiful older women.

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Ohh, you understand me......?

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That's just it. The true beauty that lurks if you examine discerningly, deeply into women......
To grasp it is something us writers struggle to do continuously.

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Wow...... True beauty....... Huh

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...... This guy's got a foot fetish.

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Ah, not true, just the soles of the feet! Ahh...... I want to be stepped on......
...... Well, my works are a "bewitching" and sensuous world. That's what Aesthetics is.

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............ Sensuous.

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Yes...... Ah, but something I'd prefer you not misunderstand me about is that it is not simply eros!
My stance is to depict what goes beyond that, true love!

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...... I'll ask just in case... what kind of love is that?

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Yes, yes...... A man who drowns in a woman who wafts the smell of danger as if she were a drawn knife, and have his life ruined by such..
I enjoy writing those kinds of stories. In fact, I want to be that kind of man.

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...... Hey, this seems like it'll get long, so let's hear it at another time.

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Oh dear, pardon me...... I got carried away.
Anyway, I believe that literature affirms humans and pursues their beauty. That is what I think...... May it be of help to consider.

Chapter 16 (Part 1): Art made of Words

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How was that? After listening to what they had to say.

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The both of them agreed on affirming humanity.
As for how they go about it, though......

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Anyway, I suppose literature focuses on humans...... It's still vague, though. I believe it is still quite far from approaching a definition.

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Well, it's too early to panic. Literature isn't just written by novelists.
There are also poets and tanka writers, fairytales...... All kinds of literary people have made it what it is today.
You just can't decide what literature is after looking at simply one facet of it. So please bear with me for a bit longer.

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...... I understand.
We're trying to comprehend something with so nebulous of a concept as literature in an alchemic context...
So of course it cannot be done so easily.

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...... So, who's opinion should we ask next?

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Hmmm, we asked Nakano to call some people over, but he's taking forever.
You're probably still under the impression that all novelists are perverts, so...
I feel like we should go ask some more serious folks about it......

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Ah, so they're not all perverts.

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They aren't, okay!!

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Ack, if we don't find a counterexample soon, then we'll all end up labeled as crazies by this kid......

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...... If you're going to go that far, then why don't you have a go at interpreting this?
Satou-san, what is literature to you?

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What is literature to me, huh...... Hm......

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At the very least, I can say this...... Literature is an art that is made up of words.
Humans think using words...... so, art that is made with words has the power to strongly move people.

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An art made of words...... huh.

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Yup. It does have the disadvantage of being only able to be understood by those who know the same language, though.

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Us literary folks have a duty to shake readers' hearts.
We need to create works that have that unique something that will do that.

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Just as Tayama-san and Tanizaki said, the most ideal theme is humans...... is what I think.
Not sure if I said everything that there is to be said, but......

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(sobs)! Satou-sensei, it is just as you say!

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Uwa, Dazai, when the hell did you get here!

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You are......

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I am Dazai Osamu! The extremely famous genius novelist who appeared upon this earth like a blazing comet!

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Well, I don't know you.

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Ack! You must live under a rock.........!

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Sigh...... Did you come to throw in your one cent?

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Oh no, that was not my intention at all! If a genius starts talking, literature might get defined all at once or something...
It'd limit the possibilites, right? So I wanted to kinda listen in to what you all were talking about...

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A rumor's floating around that some investigators are having some discourse about literature.
So I must, go confirm the truth of this as a representative, is what I thought people might say maybe!?

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So basically you heard people were talking about something interesting and you couldn't just sit still and had to come and see for yourself.

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Ha ha ha, that is one way to put it indeed! Hey wait, you're acting quite familiar with me......

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Dazai, shut up for a second!

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Huh?

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...... I suddenly felt my Tainty-senses tingling, and I was right. Yo Ao, hide behind us!

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I have never seen such a gigantic Taint before!

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How dare he butt in while I'm talking...... Did nobody teach you not to interrupt people while they're talking!?

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...... Devour them.

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Uh, it's......

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Awawawa, there's a ton of 'em headed straight for us......!

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Calm down everybody......!

Chapter 16 (Part 2): Not Going Well

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Bad... so...

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Looks like we managed to deal with them......

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...... Did that Taint just talk? Hold on, I'm kinda starting to feel like I wanna die......

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Get it together, you can't let the Taints' feelings drag you down!

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I feel sluggish...... I'm so tired...... I wanna go home......

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What did you even come here to do......

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Egads, no matter what I do, it never goes well...... I don't wanna do a thing......

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...... Seems that the effects of the Taints' influence vary even among fellow writers.

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...... Maybe we should take a break.

Chapter 17: I-Novels

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Sigh, I'm so tired......

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That Taint...... Just getting near it drained my energy, it was a dangerous one, huh......

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...... Wait, what were we talking about?

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...... We were figuring out what exactly is literature.

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Who should we go ask next? This one seems to only have come to observe, anyway.

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That's right, Nakano's getting some folks together, but...... He's taking forever.

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Ah, Satou-san!

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You're here...... Find anyone good?

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Yes. After Tayama-san, I thought I should definitely ask that person...... I brought him along, the god of novels.

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........................ Blech.

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Hey now, hey now, you got some interesting folks gathered here.

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Shiga-san, we've been waiting for you.

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...... Hey, what's going on, for some reason Dazai-san's mood plunged very obviously...

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Dazai and Shiga-san had some beef back in the day...... So I would rather they didn't have to meet, but......

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...... Ummm, I really wanted to ask Shiga-san's theory on literature.

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Hah, of course the God of Novels gets special treatment.

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You guys keep saying it...... Are you a god or something?

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Haha, of course I'm not a god, just that other literary folks call me that.

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Liar, you're the one who called yourself that......

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Shiga-san's sentences are so beautiful. Enough so that everyone would imitate him at least once.
So that's why everyone respects him and calls him the god of novels.

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Can sentences even vary that much? I do get that the contents reveal a person's individuality...

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Hey hey, you could incur the wrath of every novelist who ever lived with that line.

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I am very sorry, I have never come into contact with literature before...

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A literary style is exactly the way a writer thinks, the way they feel - something by which you can tell immediately who the author is from looking at their sentences.

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That's right, if you read carefully you'll know, it's very clear that the sentences of the god of novels have a godly and self-important aura.

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Hey Dazai, stop antagonizing our guest.

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Man, what's with you today?

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Oh noooo, I just was thinking how absolutely absurd it is for the "god" who knows absolutely nothing of what humanity really is to be talking about novels...

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...... Huh? Got a problem?

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Stop it right there, guys...... Wait, Shiga-san, behind you!

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Wah......

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Oh my, how cowardly of you to come from behind!

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Everyone, please be careful!

Chapter 18: Discrepancies in Opinions

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The Taint from before is number 6.
Envy is it's main emotion, and its long-range attacks are difficult to deal with...... Apparently.

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Jeez, I can't just sit back and let these fellas that look like scraps of trash mess around with my novel!

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...... You don't have to go that far.

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There was an interruption, but...... Shiga-san, please tell us what you think.

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Yes, that's right.

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Shiga-san, you were in a faction called White Birch......

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Yup...... My novels were also called the White Birch School itself, but I shouldn't be the one explaining that to you.
It'd be much simpler for me to explain about I-novels.

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I-novels?

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Yup, they're novels that use things that come up in your daily surroundings for their material.
Not the simple stuff of the type Tayama wrote which only scratches the surface, but more meaningful ones.

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I don't really get it, what exactly is the difference?

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Hmm, I guess the part where they focus on how the protagonist, aka the proxy of the author, thinks of what's happening around them.
Choice 1
It's like an essay.
Choice 2
It's like a diary.

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...... Don't say it like that, it's art, okay?

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Haha, you would think it's a simple matter, but it's actually pretty difficult, isn't it?

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Well, even so, it's pretty nice you can just write about your own life and get money for it.

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If you really think so, you should give it a shot, too.
If you do, then you'll quickly find out just how seriously we were writing for the sake of art.

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I see...... So what's so important about I-novels?

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Yeah, just like Tayama and Tanizaki were saying, the main point of I-novels is also to depict humanity.
The characters of my novels are parts of me, and I wrote about the things I've experienced.

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What's important is that those who read my novels will ultimately have their lives changed.
Hmm, yeah...... If I were to say, literature is something that depicts "humanistic growth".

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Humanistic growth......

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Yeah, that's why people who do literature have to constantly be progressing as humans.

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...... It's not something so noble like that.

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Huh? You tryna say it's something different?

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Literature is a more primal thing...... Something that the weak can also come alongside! Why can't you understand, I wonder!!

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Calm down, calm down! I get that you hate Shiga like he's the Devil himself.
But this isn't the place to start a fight!

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That's right, if you release too many negative emotions, the Taints will come running.

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...... I'm going back.

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Ah, hey......

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Now then. I threw in my two cents, so I'll head back as well.

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Thank you very much for your answer.

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Sure...... Now that you mention it, how about asking that person? If you haven't already, anyway.

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That's true......

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Who? Who do you mean?

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You'll know when we meet him.

Chapter 19: The Beginning of Literature

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...... So that's why you're talking about literature to us.

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Please. If it's you, Natsume Souseki-sensei, I believe you can bestow the key to defeat the Taints upon us......

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I understand. If my words can be of help, then I shall talk as much as you like.

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Thank you very much. We went around asking several people, but...
Don't know if it's the fault of the people we asked, or if we didn't explain well enough or something...

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Yes. But it feels like we've finally stopped upon a respectable-looking person.

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Ahaha, Nakano-kun, what on earth was everyone telling you...?

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They were talking about Naturalist literature and I-novels and such...... Started some fights...

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I see...... Then I'll talk about this. The generation in which I formerly lived.

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...... Will this take a long time?

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Well, it's understandable that you would be wary of an elder's rambling stories, but just stay with me for a bit.
There is a proper order to things, you know.

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A long time ago, the long, peaceful period of time called the Edo Period ended, and the curtains opened to the new Meiji era.
Technology, customs, culture...... Many new tides flowed into them, however, among those, there was a particularly outstanding change.

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And that was the ability to consider the concept of how we should live our lives.

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I don't really understand, what do you mean?

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Before, a person's entire life was determined from the moment they were born.
There was no such thing as a person's dreams for the future, and there was not even the concept of falling in love freely.

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Natsume-sensei, you were born in the Edo period, so everything must have been so new to you.
I can't even imagine what it was like.

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Yes, in the Edo period, you could do nothing but continue the job of your parents,
but when modernization began, people were able to choose their occupation. Of course, becoming a writer was one of those options.
And with the advent of freedom suddenly being given to the people, they became confused.

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What do I want to do...... No, first of all, what kind of person am "I"?......
Everyone began to consider that.

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Huh, that's really hard to believe.
That's the kind of stuff middle-schoolers worry over.

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A long time ago, we lived more simply. Just think about how many things are easy now that were unthinkable back in the day.

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So you were able to live without thinking much at all...... I just can't imagine it.
Choice 1
Like bugs.
Choice 2
Like cats.

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Haha, that's an interesting example. Yes, we lived a simple life just as that of bugs.
Then we evolved into thinking bugs.

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That's right. We were not so uninhibited as them, but in a way, we were so happy.

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When it became necessary to leave that simple way of living and gain a sense of thinking about how to live,
that was the time the word "novel" came into being......That's why the theme of most novels naturally became
those kinds of things. Usually, the protagonists were young men troubled over how to live their lives.

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So basically, Natsume-san, you also were writing about "how to live"......?

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Yes. That is why literature projects onto the reader's heart, even if the times change.

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Maybe literature is even more deeply entrenched in the concept of human existence than we thought.

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I see. Thinking about how Shiga-san and Dazai-san and them were quarreling just earlier,
I guess there was just a difference in their pet theories of how to live.

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Everyone has their own way of life, so properly speaking there is no reason to fight over it, in my opinion, but......
Everyone is simply that serious about it. Because their works reflect the way they live as a mirror does.

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Artists are seriously all idiots......

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...... Yes, that is one thing I can't contest.

Chapter 20 (Part 1): Literature is a way of life

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My long monologue is over. Now, we can only wait for you fellows to solve the mystery.

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After hearing what you had to say, I remembered many things.

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"Literature is a way of life"...... I feel like it got wrapped up into a nice and neat little package.

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Yeah, now that I think of it, that's how it was for me, too.
What were we thinking as we wrote literature...... I may have forgotten how that felt.

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Novels, poetry, tanka, haiku...... Whatever form it took, we used that literature as creators to answer that question.
Yes, it all fits together.

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The reason this world exists is because it was our ways of life, themselves.

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Within literary writings you find not allegories, but our very souls.

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Huh...... If you really think that way, I guess that's how it is.

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I've come to understand little by little what literature really is.

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Wow, that's good to hear.

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Just now, you mentioned that "our souls are contained in literature", but...
As far as I could tell from what everyone was saying, that wasn't simply an allegory, but a notion with very powerful spiritual energy.

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Thinking of it that way, one could say alchemists and writers actually are very closely related existences.

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I believe I already mentioned that alchemists deal with spiritual energy.
But with literature, I would propose the hypothesis that it is able to interfere with other peoples' energies.

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The spiritual energy contained within the notion of literature is...
amplified by the countless and varied readers......
If so...... then it makes sense that it is being targeted by the Taints, since they are blobs of emotion......
Choice 1
Literature is so deep, wow.
Choice 2
Writers are so amazing.

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Haha, thanks...... I didn't think I would be praised from that, I'm kinda embarrassed.

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I also see you in a new light. Honestly speaking, on paper, all you writers have a complete lack of willingness to cooperate and can't even take proper care of yourselves.
You all couldn't possibly make a living in normal society, is what I thought before.

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Hey, hold on, you thought of us like THAT......!?

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Haha. I gained some expertise with regard to literature, so now I shall go ask Chief to verify my hypothesis.

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Yeah, I didn't really think that our words would be that helpful, but...... We'll leave the rest to you.

Chapter 20 (Part 2): The sound of restless footsteps

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Gu........ you f...... ools.....

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Alright, we finished it off!

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So it really speaks......?

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I'm pretty sure it was vilifying us just now......?
Zaza........

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Y'all, something urgent came up! Come back right now!

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Aka, is it you? What's up all of a sudden?

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I'll tell you why later! Just hurry up, there's no time!

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Eh, understood. Just hold on for a second......
Zaza........

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What happened......?

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I've never seen Aka in such a panic.

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Let's just go back for now.
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