December 18, 2007

"Shadow of the Moon" revisions


TP is the TokyoPop translation. EW is my translation.

Chapter 53

1. TP: Rakushun arranged for lodgings at a comfortable inn as soon as they arrived in the next town. There they paused for a few moments while he wrote a short letter to the taiho, then they literally ran to the local government offices, where they handed the letter to a minor official in charge of accepting important correspondence.

EW: They stopped at the next city and got a room at an inn. As soon as Rakushun finished writing the letter, they rushed over to the municipal building.

The subject of the first sentence is Rakushun: "As soon as they arrived at the next city, Rakushun arranged for a room at an inn." However, the adjective "comfortable" is not used.

2. TP: As they made their way back out of the office hall, Rakushun explained that once the letter had reached its destination, they would probably receive a reply at their lodgings.

EW: If the letter was received, Rakushun said, a reply would be sent to the inn.

The addition is not in the original.

3. TP: She certainly didn't feel like a king. Still, she wouldn't hold Rakushun back from writing his letters, and she was willing to wait patiently to see what would happen.

EW: At the same time, she couldn't shake the feeling that she was a king. Consequently, she did not venture to stop Rakushun from doing what he was doing, and instead did as he asked with all due diligence.

Ah, yes. TokyoPop is right. I recently clarified this colloquial expression in another translation. LIT: "If turned upside down and shaken, the feeling wouldn't come out":

"Youko still was not convinced of the gravity of the situation, to say nothing of the complete lack of any feeling that there was anything "royal" about her. But she did not venture to stop Rakushun from doing what he was doing, and did as he asked with all due diligence.

4. TP: "Can't you grab an official and have him go ask? Isn't it urgent?" asked Yoko.

EW: "Can't we go grab a bureaucrat and do a lot of begging and pleading?"

The addition is not in the original.

5. TP: "We'll just write more until they come calling for us."
      "You think they'll even bother? How will they know we're telling the truth? They don't know who we are."

EW: "We'll keep on calling until they pay attention. This letter I'm sending gets straight to the point."
      "Do we really have to go to all this bother?"

TokyoPop is right about the subject: "Do you really think they'll go to the bother?" The rest of the paragraph is not in the original.

6. TP: Yoko followed curiously after Rakushun as he cut across the square. Soon they stood before a large white building encircled by a white wall of stone adorned with a relief done in gold and primary colors? Yoko thought [1] the blue glaze on the tiles lining the top of the wall [2] was startlingly beautiful.

EW: Youko tagged along behind him, scratching her head in confusion. Rakushun went to the front entrance of a white building. The alabaster stone walls were adorned with gold and richly-colored bas-relief engravings. The roof tile was a gorgeous blue enamel.

6.1. The addition is not in the original.
6.2. It's definitely the roof tiles that are blue.

7. TP: "The sign says 'temple.' Does that mean a god is worshiped here, like the Emperor of Heaven? Didn't you say most people didn't worship gods?"

EW: "A shrine, it says. For worshiping God? The Tentei?"

The addition is not in the original.

8. TP: Two guards stood there; they asked for his identification, then waved the two through.

EW: Inside the gates were a pair of guards. "Just observing," Rakushun said. They were asked for and presented their identification papers.

The noun is "personal identification papers," not "his identification papers" (though this use of the reflexive pronoun is maddeningly confusing).

9. TP: After a moment's hesitation she opened the front doors, her hand brushing along [1] the intricately detailed carvings that covered the wood paneling, and entered a large room like a wide corridor that ran deep into the building. [2]
      The air inside the structure was still and silent. At the far end of the room [3] was a large square hole in the wall, like a window, through which an inner courtyard was visible.

EW: The handiwork of the doors was exceedingly fine. Inside was a rotunda-like room. An air of tranquility suffused the interior of the building. The wide rotunda faced a wall. There was a large, square window in the wall. Through the window a courtyard was visible.

9.1. This addition is not in the original.
9.2/3. We're both wrong: "A large, square window graced the facade of a rotunda-like hall that reached deeply into the building."

10. TP: On all four sides of the window were shelves that appeared to be altars of some sort, covered with flowers, candles, and other offerings. In front of the window, facing it, were four people--two men and two women--praying fervently.

EW: What looked liked an altar completely encircled the window. Flowers and candles and offerings were piled upon the altar. At the altar, four or five couples faced the window, fervently praying.

      Should be: "At the altar, four or five men and women faced the window, fervently praying."

11. TP: Here and there she saw small ribbonlike decorations that had been attached to the branches, and near many of these a large golden fruit was hanging. The fruit on the trees she had seen in the mountains were small, almost berries, but these were big enough to hold with both hands.

EW: The white branches bore neither flowers nor leaves. Here and there a ribbon was tied to a branch and there fruits were ripening. The trees in the mountains bore rather small fruit in comparison. These were big enough to wrap your arms around.

The addition is not in the original.

12. TP: Yet if there was a way to find out, Yoko thought she would like to know who these people were. My true parents. Somehow knowing that there were people here who had prayed for her to be born helped Yoko to finally accept the truth of her origin. She was born here, in this world, somewhere encircled by the Void Sea .

EW: She was struck with the desire to search out the people who had wanted her, see what kind of people they were. Finding the people who had prayed for her birth would finally confirm that this was her birthplace. Under normal conditions, she would have been born in a place like this, somewhere in this world, in the embrace of the Sea of Emptiness.

The addition is not in the original, but TokyoPop has the grammatical mood correct: "Knowing that there were people here as well who had prayed for her birth finally convinced Youko of her origins. Under normal conditions, she should have been born in a place like this, somewhere in this world, in the embrace of the Sea of Emptiness."

13. TP: "Over There, parents and children look alike."
      "Huh. Isn't that kind of weird?"
      "I don't think so," Yoko said. It occurred to her that she'd never really thought about it before. [1]
      "I think it would be awful strange living in a house with people that looked like you."
      "You know, maybe you're right."

EW: In that other world, children resemble their parents."
      "Well, that's different. Isn't it a bit creepy, though?"
      "Hard to say whether it is or not."
      "I guess it wouldn't be that creepy if everybody in the same household resembled each other." [2]
      "When you think about it, probably not."

13.1. The addition is not in the original.
13.2. I misread the negative conjugation: "Seems to me it'd be kinda creepy if everybody in the same household looked like each other."
      "Come to think about it, you might have a point."

14. TP: "That I do know, actually," Yoko said. Another piece of the bizarre puzzle that was this world clicked into place.

EW: "That makes sense."

The additions are not in the original.

15. TP: Even if you come across the most dangerous sort of animal, if you're near a tree, you mustn't kill it. That's one of the Great Rules."

EW: . . . it is absolutely forbidden to capture or kill one in sight of a yaboku.

I don't get the sense that this is a proper noun (unlike "Divine Decrees"). LIT: "It is a hard and fast rule."

16. TP: Suddenly, another question rose in her mind, but it wasn't one that she wanted to ask him, so she kept it to herself. The high walls surrounding the place and the guards at the door were answer enough.

EW: She had other questions on the tip of her tongue, but they were of a more vulgar nature, so she thought better of asking them here. Like, exactly what kind of hanky-panky went on in the red-light district, that kind of thing.

I would amend the first sentence: "She had more whimsical questions on the tip of her tongue." The key noun in the second sentence can also be translated "brothel." TokyoPop seems to have skipped the subject entirely. Unfortunately, the author herself does not settle the question elsewhere.

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