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Shore at twilight.

Discuss about anything related to the Twelve Kingdoms, also known as 十二国記, Juuni Kokki or Jūni Kokuki. Talk about the novels, the anime, the writer Fuyumi Ono or illustrator Akihiro Yamada, but beware for spoilers!

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Shore at twilight.

Postby fragile_bloom » Wed Nov 16, 2005 2:13 pm

OK, we have to take this discussion off from "Who is your favourite character" thread.

So, for a start, I have 2 questions:

Question 1: The names used in the Japanese-Chinese translation is very different from those in the Japanese-English translation. Can somebody tell me the following:

"Lian Ling" = Renrin
"Fang Ling" = ?? The girl kirin who visited Kei with her king. She is playful like Enki. Almost a reflection of Enki. Her kingdom is 300 years old and very rich. She and Renrin played a crucial role in finding Taiki.

Question 2:

For those who have read the novel, is Shore at twilight an implicit love story or is it void of romance?

I would prefer to think it is void of romance because of the tense atmosphere but looking at it as a whole, it could be otherwise. It would be interesting to see how the animated series interprete Youko's relationship with her Kirin vs her relationship with the King of En.
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Re: Shore at twilight.

Postby Ret » Wed Nov 16, 2005 8:27 pm

fragile_bloom wrote:Question 1: The names used in the Japanese-Chinese translation is very different from those in the Japanese-English translation. Can somebody tell me the following:

"Lian Ling" = Renrin
"Fang Ling" = ?? The girl kirin who visited Kei with her king. She is playful like Enki. Almost a reflection of Enki. Her kingdom is 300 years old and very rich. She and Renrin played a crucial role in finding Taiki.

could it be because chinese and english are not the same language?

most of the names and terms in the chinese translations (fan and licensed versions) use identical chinese characters as those used in the japanese original, so i would argue that the chinese names are actually much more similar to the japanese than the romanized japanese names, but when it comes down to it, it doesn't matter.

廉麟 is renrin, pronounced "lianlin" in chinese.
峯麟 is hourin, pronounced "fenglin" in chinese.

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Postby beranda » Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:54 am

峯麟 is hourin, pronounced "fenglin" in chinese.

The girl kirin who visited Kei with her king. She is playful like Enki. Almost a reflection of Enki. Her kingdom is 300 years old and very rich.

I didn't read the book, so i can't claim anything for sure, but isn't it HANRIN? I mean, come on, guys, Hourin was killed by Gekkei like 4 years ago and Hou is far from wealthy kingdom. But in Anime Enki mentions Han as a wealthy kingdom which specializes in producing fine clothes and jewelry. Besides he mentiones that Han-ou and Hanrin are a bit eccentric. "Playful and Enki-like" sounds quite about right. :wink:
fragile_bloom
OK, now i understand you read the whole novel in chinese. Come on! Spill the beans! :D I'd like to know what happens next and Otyaku translation so far is on hold for some reason.
Well, i mean, i already know what happens in large, but some logic in described events quite perplexes me. OK, it's understable that Kei can't go on mission of saving Taiki on its own. But why Youko doesn't go to Japan to find him herself? She'd be the most suited person for such a task, wouldn't she? How come En-ou d after 500 years of absense would be suitable for a search? The guy never saw a train or computer in his life, he doesn't know which bus to take to Taiki's house. And HE goes to save him?! :?
How Renrin (and Hanrin) suddenly find Taiki? Enki couldn't do it for years as Taiki's horn was injured or something like that and he couldn't "feel" him. So how Renrin does and gives him back his memory?
And if Youko is so stupid as to rush and risk everything for the Tai's sake, then why she's able to involve another 7 kingdoms and wise and established rulers into the same madness, including En-ou?
Frankly speaking, this device of - Youko hears the Taiki's story and suddenly feels empathy and rushes to save Tai no matter what...Sounds quite far-fetched for me. So far the novel gives me a very strange feel. As if Youko in this novel has no relation whatsoever to the person from the earlier novels. Only the title Kei-ou and her eyes and hair are recognisable.
And about that rebellion...Someone told me that the heaven's officers rebelled because they thought that Youko lacks the royal dignity or something like that (hires Hanjuu as officials, doesn't act as an empress).
And that the rebellion is very short and ends right there in Taiki's room with Youko and Risai present. But the most peculiar thing is that they are saved by Rikaku! Enki's shirei. Where was Keiki hiding? :?:
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Postby Ret » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:22 am

beranda wrote:I didn't read the book, so i can't claim anything for sure, but isn't it HANRIN?

oops, you're probably rite. i wasn't paying attention to what book was being talked about nor did i read the description carefully. plus, i was thrown off by the initial spelling of "fangling." if it's hanrin (氾麟), then in chinese, it's pronounced "fanlin." n and ng are not the same sound, and in the case of "fan" vs "fang," even the vowel is different.

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Spoilers?

Postby fragile_bloom » Thu Nov 17, 2005 4:50 pm

Thanks Ret and Beranda. It was Hanrin.

I don't feel bad spilling any beans, the translations are not forthcoming and I understand how frustrating that must be. First time in my life, I read a Chinese novel. I struggled with the language. Ret should help verify my writing.

The search for Taiki was conducted by 4 Kirins with the help of magical devices from Han and Ren. Renrin and Hanrin found traces of Taiki’s Shirei which lead them to Taiki. The overall mission leader was En-O.

When they found Taiki, they could not regard him as a Kirin and technically/legally, he could not be brought back to the 12 Kingdoms. There was a debate whether Taiki should be brought back and if yes, how this is going to be lawfully possible. You have to read the details to fully understand why En-O is possibly the only person who can fetch Taiki from Horai.

My sense was that Youko, after realizing the details of Taiki’s predicament did not firmly press for his return. she either asked questions or kept quiet. It was Han-O who firmly said that Taiki should be brought back regardless of whether he will be rejected by this world or otherwise.

Youko’s role was that of a host to the search party. En-O requested for help from the 12 kingdoms and sent Enki to confer with the fairy on Mt Ho to make sure this collaborative effort did not violate heaven's rules. Youko accompanied Enki in this trip and clarified the boundaries in which the kingdoms can and cannot act. This whole Taiki incident was like a learning experience for Youko and Keiki. The author reminds us that Youko is only a teenager and Keiki is a young Kirin.

If not for Enki’s quick thinking, Taiki would not have made it back -- dead or alive.

I’d say this is a great love story of how 7 kingdoms came together to save Taiki. Each played their part.

I hope someone with a good grasp of the language can describe the rebellion. We can exchange notes.
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Postby nightchaser » Thu Nov 17, 2005 9:37 pm

Taiki had his horn chopped off by Asen and that removed his mystical powers. Also, his parents were making him eat meat which his body regarded as a foreign substance. His shirei started to starve (they feed off of a Kirins life force) and went mad. This was slowly killing Taiki. When Keiki & co. finally found him, he was a mortal who was (outwardly) healthy but inside he was dying. If they left him in Horai he would die soon. Bringing him back to Kei would also kill him because only Senin can pass through Shoku. I think they could not use the magic rope from Ren because he was no longer Senin. Basically, he would die no matter what they did, so why not bring him home. En-o temporarily placed him on the En registry as a refugee, then went to Horai to make Taiki a Senin and bring him through Shoku to Kei. From there Risai took him to Mt. Ho and the Goddess Saiobo (spelling) healed him, and said his horn will probably grow back in time. Risai had to do a lot of begging because the Goddess didn't want to do it and questioned Risai's motives as personal instead of Tai-oriented. She takes away his Shirei (including Sanshe) because they are insane. She said she will cure them and they can return then. She took him back to Kei. When he was well enough to travel En-o removed him from the En registry and Risai and Taiki flew off into the sunset to search for Tai-O.

It was kind of a moving moment when Risai realizes the little boy she rememberd was now a man and all that time lost would never come back. :(

Also when he meets with Keiki and neither knows what to say... Perhaps Taiki has become somewhat like Keiki?

I translated from online Chinese by using an online translator. I looked at various sections, not the whole thing :shock: that would have been too much. It was difficult, but I was bored (I did it several months ago). I don't know too many details, I was just able to get the high level action. I think I got that right though... :wink:
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Postby fragile_bloom » Fri Nov 18, 2005 1:13 am

nightchaser wrote: En-o temporarily placed him on the En registry as a refugee, then went to Horai to make Taiki a Senin and bring him through Shoku to Kei.


Thanks for filling in the details. I also thought that was how it happened. It was Enki's idea to make Taiki an immortal and citizen of En so that he can legally and technically return home. This was why En-O had to go to Horai.

I was very moved by Renrin's concern for Taiki, instead of going to sleep like the other 3 kirins, she continued the search for Taiki in Horai alone at night. Enki is a darling. Before Risai and Taiki returned to Tai, Enki did something no one else did, he gave Risai and Taiki money for the journey home, he knew they had nothing. Perhaps, Enki was very poor when he was in Horai and understood hunger and poverty.

Enki had earlier teased Youko about her relationship with Keiki. He commented that Keiki was like a younger brother to him, it is strange that although Keiki was a servant, he seem to find his duty troublesome. Youko was puzzled about this comment because Keiki appeared very willing to do his job and had been working very hard. After the rebellion, Keiki said to Youko "If something happnes to you each time I leave your side, that is very troublesome". Youko laughed at the word "troublesome". Exact word used by Enki. I'm not sure if it was Enki's shirei who saved Youko during the rebellion but it was surely a wild animal with sharp teeth. I don't fully understand that rebellion.
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Postby nightchaser » Sat Nov 19, 2005 12:15 pm

He was very week when he arrived in Kei and was bed-ridden. He was in a coma when he arrived at Mt. Ho to meet the Goddess, and was bed-ridden again when they got back to Kei. He recovered, though, and regained his memories. In fact it was shortly after this when Youko got her wish and finally was able to talk to Taiki that they were interrupted by the short-lived rebellion in Taiki's bedroom.

I'm not sure if something happened during the trip through the Shoku. I had to use an online translator and some of the sentences just made no sense at all to me when translated. He was a sennin when he went through the shoku, however, he was also severely ill due to his horn missing, his shirei having gone insane, and his non-vegetarian diet.

You could almost say that if it weren't for bad luck, Taiki would have no luck at all :( Well, let's hope for a happy ending :wink:
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Taiki

Postby fragile_bloom » Sat Nov 19, 2005 2:31 pm

Taiki was in a coma, the beautiful lady on Mt Hoe looked at him and diagnosed his condition. I cannot understand what she said but it might have something to do with the cold journey home that aggravated his condition. Later, the goddess healer (not sure of her name) said somebody put a curse on Taiki.

I speak and understand Chinese very well but cannot read and write. I had to check almost every word or short phrase in the online dictionary. Some sentences made no sense.

It was heart wrenching to hear the group discuss the fate of somebody whom they love dearly. Han-o was sure Taiki must return, Renrin and Enki had always wanted to bring him back, Youko and Keiki were quiet. En-o agreed Taiki should return. He sent Enki, Youko and Risai to Mt Hoe to consult the beautiful lady. They were worried that even if Taiki survived the journey, he will be shut out by Mt Hou and rejected by people. Worse still, he may reject himself because he is not able to do anything to save Tai. While Enki, Youko and Risai went to Mt Hoe, En-O and Keiki went to Ren where En-O took the opportunity to establish relations with Ren. He was very moved by Renrin's concern for Taiki. On Mt Hou, the beautiful lady implied they should leave Taiki in Hourai because Taiki can no longer do anything to help Tai, besides he is now a mortal human and cannot survive the journey. Risai pleaded.....suddenly, Enki had a brilliant idea....to temporarily register Taiki as a citizen/refugee of En and then make him an immortal "Tai-Shih" so that he could come home through Shoku. The beautiful lady agreed but said, they must bring Taiki to Mt Hoe.

The rebellion.....where was Keiki???.....I have an answer.....Not next to Youko! :lol: (giggle)
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Postby beranda » Sun Nov 20, 2005 3:57 am

fragile_bloom
nightchaser
You're AWESOME!
Thank you, thank you, thank you! :D
OK, that's cleared up some things, except for Keiki not being near Youko in rebellion time. :wink: I understand that he went to Hourai as well with Enki, Hanrin and Renrin (i've got it right?).
But the rebellion happens at the end, when everyone is back from Hourai. So where is he?
And what about Youko and Taiki? Do they talk at the end (after the rebellion)? Do they become friends? Or nothing of the sort?
Does Kei and other kingdoms establish relationships between them as a result of their close co-operation?
I already admitted that Youko in this novel gives me a strange feeling but i'd like to read till the end to make a final conclusion. And as far as i remember Keiki finds Youko and his service to her troublesome from the start. :lol:
Why Taiki and Risai leave Kei before Taiki's shirei are healed? How Risai alone would protect him before the awful Tai condition (as described at the beginning) AND Asen and co'?!
Maybe it's better not to ask too much questions and just wait for the translation to fill in all the gaps, but right now it seems to be on hiatus. Anyone knows what happend to Otyaku site and translation project? It's not updated since August. :cry:
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Postby nightchaser » Sun Nov 20, 2005 11:49 pm

Taiki and Risai were unnerved by the attempted coup in Kei and decided they should leave - that they were being a burden and they had to get started finding Gyousou anyway. They left by flying above the sea of clouds, where there is no youma. Apparently, only the king is allowed to fly there usually? Not sure why.

Taiki and Youko were talking together when the rebellion stormed into Taiki's room and interrupted them. I'm not sure what they were talking about... couldn't realling understand it. There won't be any chance of relations until Gyousou is back and Tai is stable again.

My personal deductions:
Now that Taiki is healing, and Tai is in a bad state he is suseptible to shitsudo. They must find Gyousou asap to prevent that from happening.

Taiki is a kirin and is capable of taming other shirai. There will be lots of youma around and I think he will get his chance very quickly. Remember, one of the Tai officials described Taiki as a "youma above all other youma" because of this ability to tame Gouran. Now that he is older and driven to protect Gyousou as never before he will have 100 youma to attack Asen in the last battle 8) :D

Doesn't all this remind you of Youko when she had to retake her country in order to sit on the throne? Now Taiki has to go through the same thing. On the flip side, Shoryou and Rokuta were taika's with the same wartorn experiences as well. I wonder if taika rulers always show up in two's or if this is coincidence?

Otayaku said he wanted to take a break - his site also hinted he would be moving back to Japan. But - yeah - his job sounds very demanding in hours. I know what that is like - 15 hours commuting and working. Even on the weekends it is hard to get ambition to do anything but sit and watch TV :cry:
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Taiki-Keiki conversation

Postby fragile_bloom » Mon Nov 21, 2005 12:07 am

Hi Nightchaser,

I have a question I want to ask you.....What do you think of Taiki's conversation with Keiki? I did a summary below. I feel that this is more significant than Youko's conversation with Taiki which I'm not interested in. I won't speculate romance between Taiki and Youko based on that conversation, it was very superficial. I understand the language in those passages. They did become good friends.

Keiki-Taiki conversation. When they first met, they were like strangers, neither had anything to say. Keiki felt pain when he realized that the little boy he knew will never come back. Time has moved on and the queen whom he served when he first met Taiki is no more. Taiki said he had a long and painful dream. He recalled the days on Mt Hoe when Keiki taught him many things. In his dream, he saw Mt Hoe, where he spent time with Keiki, a warm feeling about the place. He missed Keiki, he longed to see him again. He has forgotten everything Keiki taught him after this long dream. He asked Keiki if it is too late for him. “Is it too late? I lost a lot of time.” “Can I still make it?”. He repeated this question several times. Keiki replied forcefully that it is not too late and something can still be done. Taiki “chewed” on his words.

I almost cried when I read this. The English language may not be able to express fully the emotions and feelings.

Do you know the Otyaku site translator? This book has to be read as a whole and in detail. Hence, reading the translations is a must for people who do not read Chinese or Japanese. Bits and pieces of info like this isn't meaningful.

To thesmokingman:
Keiki sent Shireis to protect Risai and Taiki till they reach Tai. The Shireis cannot enter Tai because that would be like Kei sending an army into Tai. Returning to Tai was Taiki’s decision. Risai did not want to leave, she knew it was suicidal. However, Taiki felt there is no point living when his country is destroyed. They were also unerved by the rebellion. Contrary to what nightchaser believe, I think Taiki is not able to have Shireis again and his existing Shireis have been put down. I'm not totally sure because the language discribing these spiritual details can be impossible to understand.
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Postby beranda » Mon Nov 21, 2005 2:31 am

nightchaser
I'm afraid i have to agree with fragile_bloom on this one.
Taiki is a kirin, no doubt, but while he's apparently extremely powerful it doesn't seem that he's in right shape so far for taming more shirei. And kirins usually tame their shirei in Koykai (Yellow sea) and come to their kingdom already fully prepared. I have no idea if kirin can tame his shirei while in his own kingdom. Maybe it's possible, but maybe it's not that simple anymore. His horn have to grow and it takes time. I understand from the explanation he's still haven't recover completely, so his power is very limited at the moment and Asen, apparently, is a powerful magician himself. His shirei would be given back to him but they also still haven't recover. Practically speaking, he and Risai are on their own, as no kingdom can help without Gyousou's direct request for help. That's why they have to find him.
I guess it's possible that Taiki is so powerful that for the sake of his king he'll re-discover in himself extraourdinary abilities, but that's so-o-o-o in the air. :roll:
So far his decision seems quite suicidal, as Risai properly thinks. :?
I won't speculate romance between Taiki and Youko based on that conversation, it was very superficial. I understand the language in those passages. They did become good friends.

Eh... :shock: I wasn't suggesting any romance between the two. Taiki's a kirin after all, what are you talking about? :lol:
I just asked, as Youko was so eager to meet Takasato and talk to him, if they establish a friendly relationship at the end, as she hoped? From your answer i gather they do part on a friendly note. Of course they won't meet again soon as both Tai and Kei have tons of problems (and finding Tai-ou is just one of them) but it'd be great if they'll become friends as they have so much in common. They are both teenagers and both have to learn everything about their duties from the sctrach. I don't know, i just like the idea.:wink: I'd also love to see Taiki re-establish his relationship with Keiki as well and Renrin and Enki and others.
thesmokingman
I wonder if Asen did the same thing with Gyousou that Atsuyu did to his father. Maybe Gyousou is alive somewhere locked away by Asen. It seems to me that after their plan to kill Taiki failed (when Taiki invoked meishoku and escaped to Hourai), they had to change plans and keep Gyousou alive so that Taiki could not select another ruler right away. It might also have been their plan all along to simply incapacitate them both so that no new ruler would emerge.

You know, this is exactly what i think as well.
And Risai also states at the beginning that Asen simply trying to ruin Tai and not usurp the throne for himself. One has to wonder why. Maybe, like Shoukou, he's defying the heavens for some reason?
I really hope the Otyaku site owener doesn't abandon this translation. I understand it's a hard work and he has a life of his own, but maybe he'll be back to it some day?
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Postby nightchaser » Mon Nov 21, 2005 11:12 am

Okay - I do believe that Taiki is capable of training shirai. His horn is growing back, and he is recovering. Being back in Tai and doing something useful, like looking for Gyousou will also help in his determination. He trained the most powerful of youma - Gouran - so there must be a reason Tentei created a kirin with so much power. My argument is that Taiki is the most powerful Kirin ever and can do things a normal Kirin cannot. He is not invincible though - I realize that. :o

Also, I remember in "Shore of the Maze" after Taiki had been told that the people of Tai had passed through the gate and were on their way to Mt. Ho. He would look in the direction they were coming from and he felt "foreboding".

"When he was playing or learning a few easier divination lessons from the nyosen, if he so much as looked out into the southwest, he would suddenly feel as if he couldn't breathe. And when he recalled that the Reikon Gate was in the southwest, he would feel a chill and his heart would beat faster.
This was not a good premonition. He always felt something scary was making its way to him."

I think he could feel Gyousou coming. Therefore - I think once he gets into Tai he will be able to eventually find Gyousou the same way. However, Asen will do everything he can to get in the way of this.

I don't know Otyaku - I just made assumptions based on his website.
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Postby Niwashi2 » Mon Nov 21, 2005 2:28 pm

nightchaser wrote:Bringing him back to Kei would also kill him because only Senin can pass through Shoku.

I don't really understand this part of it. Why does Taiki have to be a Sen'nin in order to pass through a Shoku, when other people don't? Kaikyaku are ordinary humans who get blown from Hourai to the Twelve Kingdoms through Shoku, and they generally seem to survive it. Or is this simply a rule against anyone being allowed to deliberately bring an ordinary human through a Shoku? (That would be a bit problematic for the anime, of course.)
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Postby fragile_bloom » Mon Nov 21, 2005 3:09 pm

Yes, Niwashi, Youko brought this point up to the group but they said her case was different. She is the ligitimate ruler of Kei. She can pass through shoku. Taiki however, is human when they found him, he is not a Kirin. In the novels, I understand that only Youko went through Shoku, her friends did not accompany her. That part was added into the animation.

Beranda: I was active in the thread "Speculative Romance" and some readers hyped on the Youko-Taiki conversation as a possibility of Romance. I started reading that passage but really cannot put the two together.

:oops: I Love to speculate romance. But I prefer this book void of romance. Speculating romance in this book is "troublesome".
:lol:
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Postby Hazel » Mon Nov 21, 2005 3:31 pm

fragile_bloom wrote:Yes, Niwashi, Youko brought this point up to the group but they said her case was different. She is the ligitimate ruler of Kei. She can pass through shoku. Taiki however, is human when they found him, he is not a Kirin. In the novels, I understand that only Youko went through Shoku, her friends did not accompany her. That part was added into the animation.

It'll be interesting to see how they change this to work in the anime then, if they do animate it :)
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Postby zitch » Mon Nov 21, 2005 3:40 pm

Hazel wrote:It'll be interesting to see how they change this to work in the anime then, if they do animate it :)


Well, in the anime, when Keiki brought Sugimoto back to her world, he did mention that he could not guarantee her safety.

Im guessing that a mortal has a fair chance of being killed during the trip itself. Most kaikyaku (sp?) drown in the waters if they survive the shoku. In addition to that, the shoku is also accompanied by natural disasters in the lands of the Twelve Kingdoms.
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Postby beranda » Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:50 am

nightchaser
He always felt something scary was making its way to him.

This is exactly the same reason why Keiki found Youko in Hourai. He followed the "ouki". He felt her the same way Taiki felt Gyousou coming. Kirin feels its ruler and can always find him by this ouki. There's quite a good explanation in "Shore of maze" about it. That's the reason they need to find Taiki as he's the only one who can find Gyousou. But that's the usual kirin's gift, not something special to Taiki.

Niwashi2
Why does Taiki have to be a Sen'nin in order to pass through a Shoku, when other people don't?

Well, practically, everyone can pass through the Shoku. BUT! The regular mortals in many cases simply end dead upon arrival. This is what the old woman says to Youko in Hairoe, that she's the lucky one as most Kaykyaku end up dead on the shore or drowned. But some do survive and make it mostly unharmed, like Suzu or Rakujin. It's just that their chances aren't that big. While in anime they bring two more "mortals" along with Youko they also mention the fact that they are really lucky to survive, Youko mentions to Yuka that the trip is extremly dangerous at the end and they also imply that Keiki and his shirei take care of them.
As taiki is all of the sudden mortal - i'm sorry but i still can't comprehend how Kirin can stop being a Kirin simply because his horn is injured and become a mortal, just beats me :roll: - and apparently very sick, most of the chances he won't make it unharmed.
That's why they'd better turn him into sen-in again.
fragile_bloom
Youko brought this point up to the group but they said her case was different.

You know...It's like Youko herself didn't read the "Shadow of the Moon" or someone erased her memories in this novel. Yeh, must be it! :?
This really bothers me.
She doesn't pass the shoku unharmed simply because she's Kei-ou. It's because Keiki forces her to convent with him (he swears his loyalty to her) and she's turned into Sen-in by Keiki! The moment she says " I accept" in anime (in the book she simply nodded, but that's practically the same) she seizes to be mortal. She doesn't know it at the moment but it doesn't change a thing.
That's why she's unharmed when the window explodes, that's why she makes it safe through the shoku, that's why she survives falling from the sky, that's why youma can't kill her easily and her wounds are healed without scars, that's why she understands the language.
And it all comes together for her at the end of the "Shadow of the Moon". She talks about it with Rakushun.
And now all of the sudden she doesn't understand a thing and her case is different? :shock:
Keiki did the same thing as Enki in his time - swore his loyalty to Shouryou in Japan, BEFORE taking him back to En, so En-ou became sen-in and could make it safely to his kingdom through shoku.
I was active in the thread "Speculative Romance" and some readers hyped on the Youko-Taiki conversation as a possibility of Romance. I started reading that passage but really cannot put the two together.

No way! I never even intented to go into THIS direction! :lol: No, i really asked about the FREINDSHIP. So, i understand they do establish something like that?
Romance in these novels is indeed "troublesome". :wink: Frankly speaking, while mrs. Ono mentiones throughout the novels about kings having harems and concubines (what about queens, by the way?), there's not even a hint of "love" between the sexes anywhere. And the whole issue of the intimate relationship is completely in the dark, so maybe it's better not to go there at all.
Hazel
I don't think they'd have to change anything in the anime because of those two, IF they'd continue it someday. They are not present there anymore and their storylines are completed. And while i might be in minority but i think those storylines ultimately added a lot to the series.
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Postby nightchaser » Tue Nov 22, 2005 4:08 pm

Oh - I didn't explain myself very well :shock:

What I meant was that Taiki could have awesome powers with only part of his horn grown back not that the basic kirin abilities were something only he could do. That is, I think he will be able to tame new shirai right away whereas a "normal" kirin like Keiki or Enki, when placed in the same circumstances (sick and with a partial horn) would not be able to. Taiki is the first kirin to tame a Totetsu (Gouron) and my point is that Tentei has created a kokki (black kirin) for a reason, and he gave him abilities above and beyond a normal kirin.

Perhaps Tentei knew Asen was coming and Taiki and Gyousou would be the only people able to defeat him? What if Asen has Taiki's old horn? Could he harness the power from it to make himself even more powerful? Conjecture of course... but I have to wonder. Asen planned on killing Taiki, but he only cut off his horn. So he would find the horn and probably start scheming.

You know, I wonder too about whether the Queens would have a male harem... But one day I thought - well the army is mostly men... Oops, this is supposed to be a PG forum... I'll stop now :shock: :D :D
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Postby fragile_bloom » Tue Nov 22, 2005 10:08 pm

Niwashi2 wrote:Kaikyaku are ordinary humans who get blown from Hourai to the Twelve Kingdoms through Shoku, and they generally seem to survive it. Or is this simply a rule against anyone being allowed to deliberately bring an ordinary human through a Shoku? (That would be a bit problematic for the anime, of course.)


The lady on Mt Ho said people who flowed into the 12Kgd and survive did so only by accident, not a norm. I would think it is a rule against anyone being allowed to deliberately bring a human through Shoku (the word used in the book is "cannot") as well as a high risk of death. Taiki was very sick, he won't survive the trip, this is certain.


Beranda got a point....come to think of it, why did Youko ask that question. She should know she wasn't human when she went through the Shoku. :?

A lot of things about Youko bothered me and these concerns scream out loud for me in this book. Her leadership style, her inability to understand and accept the world around her, she is unable or/and unwilling to understand herself and where she belonged. Her tentrums and harsh words hurled at En-O in chapter 4 of the book really scare the daylight out of her officials. Everybody was scared she might be silly enough to agree to give military aid to Tai. However, I have this feeling Keiki understood her and trusted her not to be so stupid. Even so, he was scared by the harsh words hurled at En-O. As the story progressed, she improved. Her trips to Mt Hoe were like learning experiences for her. Enki said they should take these trips to Mt Hoe as learning experiences. Enki and Youko asked the beautiful lady many questions. Youko learnt a lot about the world in which she lived in. She was full of self control on Mt Hoe and very professional in her questions. Perhaps, Nightchaser was right when he said Youko is only a teenager and the author reminds us of this. I agree she will be a great queen one day but for the moment, she is work in progress. This book captures a lot of that "work in progress". Her conversations, thoughts etc. This book has to be read in detail, sentence by sentence and viewed as a whole. If you lift sentences here and there, you may get a very wrong picture of the whole story. [/quote]
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Postby beranda » Wed Nov 23, 2005 2:32 am

nightchaser
But one day I thought - well the army is mostly men... Oops, this is supposed to be a PG forum... I'll stop now
:lol: :lol: :lol:
Well, except for mentioning Joukaku falling for Keiki (and it's also not very detailed), there's not a hint of the "love" somewhere else. Can queens have lovers? What all those sen-in feel on the subject at all while living for hundreds of years, trapped in the young bodies? I don't need some "spicy" details, really, it's just that this is an interesting topic.
fragile_bloom
But that's exactly why i have a problem so far with the last novel.
Look, i understand that Youko is a teenager and she still doesn't know a lot of things about her world. I perfectly understand that she has a lot of years and hard work ahead in order to become a great ruler and fulfill her potential.
That's why i don't have a problem when the author describes her throwing a tantrum.
BUT! I have a problem when this tantrum and the rest of her behavior look inconsistent for her character as described in the previous novels.
She throwed tantrums in "Sky at the dawn" as well. But i absolutely understood where they came from. It's like...You see that she makes mistake, she takes it out in a wrong form on the wrong person. But i can't help but feel for her, i can't help but understand her frustration and situation. She makes an understandable and logical mistake, you can see where it comes from, what caused her outbreak and that she really behaves as unexperinced teenager.
But all her concern about Tai here...Her tantrum about "i can't let Tai rot"...It's unexplainable and logically superficial for me. It's not the behavior of an unexperienced teenager - it's the behavior of a dumb and irresponsible person, who doesn't know a thing about this world. And, according to the two! previous novels from the same author - Youko is nothing of the sort. You may like her character or dislike her, but that's the truth. Both novels showed her continious personal growth as a person and a ruler.
And all of the sudden, after 2 years of ruling and constant study we're back to the beginning? What exactly she studied all this time and who smashed her into head so that she became an amnesiac? She was quite smart and a quick learner long before she entered the world of twelve kingdoms according to mrs. Ono. Did she suffer from some misterious brain-leak during a year? She already heard a bit about Taiki and Tai situation from Enki in the "Shadow of the Moon". But here she behaves as if she hears about Tai and it's disappeared ruler for the first time in her life from Risai.
En-ou already explained her in the "Shadow of the Moon" about this delicate situation between the kingdoms and that he and his army can enter Kei only by her direct request as a legimate ruler of Kei and that's why he was so desperate to find her and couldn't just go and save Keiki on his own.
Again, here, it seems she never had this conversation. Everything is shokingly new to her. I want to have what she's having, really. :roll:
And i already mentioned that case of being sen-in to pass through the shoku in my previous post.
There's just too much such inconsistencies in the character here to my taste.
As you describe it, the situation changes for the better later in the novel. But i still can't understand why it should've been started like that.
This book has to be read in detail, sentence by sentence and viewed as a whole. If you lift sentences here and there, you may get a very wrong picture of the whole story

Of course! I agree with you. But i made my conclusions based on the translated part of the novel, not from your words. I'm really thankful for all your help and answers but i still wait for the rest of the novel to read it myself and make final conclusions.
By the way, from the translation i didn't gather that her tantrum was so awful or insulting for En-ou. Personally, i thought that it was simply superficial and stupid, but not terrible or personally insulting. I didn't see that her officials were scared by her reaction so far. Maybe their responces are still untranslated? But Keiki doesn't seem to take it to the heart and their conversation is translated. He just mentions that En-ou looked puzzled (mind you, not offended or outraged).
Well, maybe it's the same as with the "Shadow of the Moon", which starts in the middle of Fabruary! which in the last chapter of "Annals" suddenly becomes the 3-d month of the year. And while according to annals Youko defeats Joey by the end of July - 7-th month(and recieves Tenchoku in August) - 2 months since the end of July suddenly we're into winter already. :shock: So, i guess, one don't have to wonder how the same strange thing happens to Youko as well. :lol:
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Postby fragile_bloom » Wed Nov 23, 2005 11:14 am

By the way, from the translation i didn't gather that her tantrum was so awful or insulting for En-ou. Personally, i thought that it was simply superficial and stupid, but not terrible or personally insulting. I didn't see that her officials were scared by her reaction so far. Maybe their responces are still untranslated? But Keiki doesn't seem to take it to the heart and their conversation is translated. He just mentions that En-ou looked puzzled (mind you, not offended or outraged).


Just wait for the next chapter translation. Storming out of the room was nothing compared to what she said to En-O during a meeting the following day. :D Actually, I was disgusted with what she said during that meeting. Somethings even if true cannot be verbally uttered in public. After reading that, I told myself......I'm not speculating any romance between Youko and Shouryuu, she is not ready.

I also found her "concern" for Tai strange. After the rebellion, Koukan had a long conversation with her, unfortunately I don't understand the Koukan's language but at one point he questioned Risai's motives for asking for help. Why did she approach Kei for help? Why not En? En-O knows Tai-O and Taiki personally, he had good relations with Tai and En is Tai's closest neighbour, En is also established and rich. Why Kei? I hate Risai after reading the novel. She took advantage of Kei-O's inexperience and kind heart. I almost skipped reading everything she said! She put Youko in a very tight spot. If she looses her cool, I think Risai is to blame.
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Postby beranda » Thu Nov 24, 2005 1:47 am

fragile_bloom
A-ha! That's why i couldn't understand what are you talking about! :)
So, the most scary Youko's outbreaks are still untranslated.
Now i get it.
Good grief! Even the mild one looks utterly stupid and out of the character, i shudder to think of even worse.
I repeat: unexperienced teenager doesn't mean stupid and irresponsible.
Why?! Why? Why?
Why write the previous novels and establish the character one way and then go and re-write him in another AND return ultimately back to the same one?
Wasn't there more convincing plot device for saving Tai and Taiki then to turn Youko into turkey who rushes for unexplainable reason "to save the world"?
I'm not speculating any romance between Youko and Shouryuu, she is not ready.

Oh, come on! Give her another couple hundreds years! She'll grow up a bit! :lol: :lol: :lol:
Never actually thought about the romance between them. :shock: I mean, he's phisically twice her age (i think) and 500 years older. But you know, you picked up a very interesting point. Can there be romance at all between the rulers? :? Is it forbidden by heavens?
I hate to repeat it again, but in the previous novels they were a very good friends. Pages in "Sky at dawn" devoted to their conversations and Youko can't stop thanking En-ou for all his help. Now, a year later she permits herself throw tantrums at him simply because he isn't as eager to help Tai as she is? Does it sound reasonable?! :shock:
About Risai
Koukan had a long conversation with her, unfortunately I don't understand the Koukan's language but at one point he questioned Risai's motives for asking for help.

You know...Couldn't he ask her earlier? If he cares about his kingdom and queen? I know that you can't answer those questions, i'm just wondering to myself.
I hate Risai after reading the novel. She took advantage of Kei-O's inexperience and kind heart.

Coudn't agree more. That's also a weird vibe i picked up through the reading. And this is also a bit contradictive to Risai from "Shore of maze". She's a very kind and responsible and noble person. I mean, IN THAT NOVEL.
Yes, i can buy her behavior as desperate and "i have no choice", but still...I don't think that mrs. Ono intented for Risai to be a bad character, rather "the savior" of Tai. So while i can understand that she's ready to do everything to save her king, even going to Kei in hopes that an unexperienced taika will swallow the bite and not caring that she'll be drop dead the next morning if she helps Tai...Yes, i can buy it. For the start. It doesn't explain why she or Kaei never even thought of going to En, which had diplomatic relationships with Tai, unlike Kei, to ask for help. (Ultimately the kingdoms do find the way to help Tai without breaking the heaven's mandate, don't they)
But meeting Youko, being saved by her, yada-yada, and still pushing that mission without a slightest remorse, knowing the awful truth... How she's capable to look Youko in the eyes?
It's not Risai from the previous novel. And i'm not sure that's what author intented to do with her character here. Flawed and desperate, maybe, but not cold-blooded killer who pushes her plan through and through no matter what.
I was also very put-off by Shokei's remark about Youko. When Risai mentions that Youko gives her an honest impression, she chuckles "to the point of idiotic". Aren't those two friends? Before this novel Shokei seemed to like and respect Youko quite a lot. What happened? :?
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Postby nightchaser » Thu Nov 24, 2005 3:24 am

We need to keep our world "values" out of this novel. I mean, in our world when a country is having trouble other countries show up with money, food, and even military aid. In the twelve kingdoms that is not done, has never been done, and they don't even consider it. In Shuryou's time of 500 years ago it was not done either. Youko is the only person in the Twelve Kingdoms who has any knowledge of international aid. The one time a ruler tried it (King Sai I believe) he and his kirin were killed by the heavens. I really want to know what was said at that council. Right now I equate everything to this: the Twelve Kingdoms are the "Fifty States" (minus DC &Pres) and each state's Governor is the king. Louisiana is decimated in a hurricane. No one is allowed to help. Three months later hundreds of thousands are dead from disease and hunger. One year later, a million. Meanwhile thousands are pouring into neighboring "States" escaping. Those neighboring states can't handle the extra people and start having problems. You are Risai in Louisiana - what do you do? Do the "ends" ever justify the "means"?

Risai heard that Queen Kai was a Taika. She had already met a Taika (Taiki) and knew how homesick and generous he was. She had never met King En and may not have heard anything about him other than general "he's a king" type of stuff. She was gambling on Youko being willing to drop everything and come to Tai's aid because she would be like Taiki and she was sure that was something Taiki would do. She knew it would destroy Youko. Yet, she did not know that in Horai there is a generosity that goes on between nations already and Youko would be easier to lead about with a sob story than she originally planned. The fact that Youko's advisors put a stop to Risai's original plan is something Risai did not expect. Yet why? Risai should have thought of that at least... She underestimated Youko and she underestimated Kei's advisors.

I think Risai's plan backfired, but in a good way, because she underestimated Youko's generosity. I really have to wonder if Youko's tantrum is nothing more than disgust at the inability of the other rulers to want to find a way to help Tai. Not having much experience at debate she turns to the opposite - tantrum. Also, I believe the opposite of Fragile_Bloom. That sometimes if a truth should not be uttered it public, that is exactly why it Should be uttered. Sometimes the only way to move people to action is throw the truth at them (that is, tell the girl she is fat and should loose weight instead of big-boned and go ahead and have another cookie).

When all is said and done, and Gyousou is back safe and learns how Taiki was returned, what will he say and do? He will know why Risai went to Kei - he is smart. Yet Youko does not blame Risai, and no harm was done, indeed good came out of it. Taiki was rescued and international cooperation was established. Risai was constantly questioning herself, and felt very guilty about her plan. I do like Risai, I think she was very brave, and loved her country very much.
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