[Clover's Regret] V1 Afterword + Animate bonuses

On the 10th of January (today or yesterday, depending on where you live), the second volume of Clover's Regret was released in Japan. To commemorate this, I've decided to release my translation of the Clover's Regret v1 afterword + two bonus short stories that were released with the volume for those who bought it from the Animate store. The first story is about Nayuta's and Koyomi's first meeting in Asuka Empire, while the second one is... Koyomi fawning over Nayuta, I guess? Please note that my only editor for this project had to stop working on fan translations, thus I had no one to edit this release, so please let me know if you spot anything that could/needs to be changed..

Full-width text - was in English in the original text.

Thanks to all of those who contributed to the SAO Scans project for helping us get the raws.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Credits

Raws: SAO Scans Project (afterword), Takazuki (Animate bonuses)
Translation: Gsimenas




TBA


Afterword


The stage for this novel, 《Asuka Empire》, is the first VRMMO that the central figure of Mother's Rosario, Yuuki, played.
Although it is a minor title that barely had any attention in the main SAO series by Kawahara-sensei, but this game was the stage for the DVD bonus story 『Sisters' Prayer』 , which focused on Yuuki and her elder sister Ran and covered a story that took place before the establishment of the Sleeping Knights.

As for how this novel came to be, it started when I received the following invitation: "Would you be willing to write a story set in a game that became famous with the dissemination of The Seed, but other than ALO and GGO?"── when I proposed "If possible, I would like to write about a Japanese-style fantasy setting!", I received word from the supervisor that "In that case, we just happen to have a title called Asuka Empire!", and thus the content of the story was decided rapidly.



As such, making good use of the fact that the game did not appear much in the original story, I feel like I have been given considerable freedom to write as I please. I feel a bit sorry about that.
First, I would like to give my heartfelt thanks to Kawahara-sensei, who pleasantly accepted the role of supervising me, Miki-shi, and other members of the staff.

This was my first time being mixed into such a spin-off (?) project, thus all the trial and error was a great experience for me. Especially seeing as I did not quite have the opportunity to write about VRMMOs till now, despite having an interest in them, I am grateful for finally receiving this opportunity.

Incidentally, being a person who cried his eyes out during Mother's Rosario, I feel extremely obliged for the chance to write a story that involves the "Sleeping Knights"── as this will end up as spoilers, I will not go into details too much, but I am grateful for a lot of things.



Also, I would like to take the opportunity to thank Ginta-san, who has drawn lovely illustrations for the book ever since it was serialised on Dengeki Bunko MAGAZINE.

The cuteness of the female characters is a given, but Detective Clevel's "suspicious foxishness" is quite well done; the characters turned out very impressive even on my side.

Speaking of being impressive, Koyomi should have been given a more minor role in the plot, but── the moment I received the design drafts, I felt like she had practically risen to the role of the main character. At the time of writing the first chapter, I had practically no image of her in mind and had practically passed the work of making the designs from scratch to Ginta, but the illustrations of her that I received looked like they captured the essence of Koyomi, thus I was very impressed. This moment was, of course, quite enjoyable.



Now, VR-related tools are finally starting to appear in the world and, while it is indeed impossible for them to reach the levels of FullDive like in SAO, I am interested in its future developments.

Personally, I am anticipating content other than games, such as VR planetariums that you can watch while sitting on a sofa at home, travels through existing railroads or a galaxy express while looking at the scenery outside the car window, or pseudo-skydiving while lying face-up in bed, but the tech will, of course, be applied mainly to games and I am looking forward to horror games, which I have a high affinity for, in particular.
Wandering about a forest late at night, you lose your way and end up at a declined shrine, and beyond the torii archway is──
Locked up in abandoned hospital that was warped into a netherworld, where the corridors you want to use to escape are looped, and, finally, a grotesque monster stands before you and──

While I anticipate games with such a mood, when VR devices have spread, I think that some day we will have hands coming out from the display and taking the user's eyeballs out and stuff; I can feel cold sweat running down me. Eek, scary.
……I am explaining this just in case, but I personally hate horror. Thought, that "hate" is the "claim to hate but actually love" kind of hate, thus, if there was an event like the 《Hundred and Eight Apparitions》, I personally would undoubtedly jump onboard.

Thus, the story in 《Asuka Empire》was filled with such wishes from the writer──

I would be very pleased if you enjoyed it, even if only a little.

Watase Soitiro, Autumn 2016



The Story of the Matchmaking Bakeneko (Animate 2016 Bonus)


Koyomihara Shiori, 《Koyomi》, was a cat loving ninja.

Of course, this was only in-game; in the real world, she was only a humble, cat-loving clerk working at a minor enterprise.

Perhaps because of her being so short that she could be mistaken for a middle school pupil, the elderly workers at the company loved her like their grandchild. Perhaps several of the employees aside from the director actually mistook her for their grandchild.

Her colleagues gave her shoulder massages, shared the sweets they got from their customers, and she even got a New Year's gift on New Year's Day this year, which was her first one since being employed.

It couldn't be said that she accepted them with a smile all over her face, but she couldn't understand.

As the company was started as a hobby by some aged people, who had retired from their profession, it was true that there were no other young female employees.

There were some women who had been working here for quite some years, but as they were mainly elderly workers as well, they treated Koyomi as their grandchild. Nor was there particularly any factional strife that is typical for girls.

Stretching it a bit, the "Let's find a nice groom for Shiori-chan" faction and the "Such talk is too early for Shiori-chan" faction were continuing their talks behind the scenes, but since both groups treated her as a grandchild, there was no big difference between them.

(……Straangee…… Even though I should be over twenty, have reached the drinking age, and properly graduated from university, why is the director telling me "Shiori-chan, you're doing such a good job waking up early every morning"……)

She couldn't understand.

If she were a cynic, she would take offense at that, but this wasn't limited to those old people. At times like when she received mittens as a present for her birthday, she was moved to tears.

Continuing to sit at an amamidokoro in 《Ayakashi Bystreet》 in the newly implemented district of 《Asuka Empire》, Koyomi pondered.

(Like…… I can't really help how I'm treated at the company, but I at least want a younger JK(1) or something as an acquaintance who'd treat me as an Onee-san……)

Speaking of her current JK friends, she had a giant man with the alias "Jack Knife", and a chūnibyō whose player name was "Joker", but Koyomi's desire wasn't that kind of JK.

She wanted a frank and honest girl talk. After finding employment, her environment ended up being filled with the elderly, and she was starving for some young sensitivity.

Suddenly, she was struck with by a soft touch on her knees.

A happi-wearing nekomata stared up at Koyomi while brushing her knees. She was able to quickly guess its goal.

"……Give an additional order or just leave already, you're saying?……Then, I'll additionally order some warabimochi."

Just when the black cat, having received an order, retired into the kitchen, another visitor came to the restaurant.

(Ah. A girl……hey, we got quite the looker!)

Koyomi subconsciously followed the girl with her eyes.

She was a lightly-dressed Battle Miko with impressive, long, black hair. The way she held her head high made Koyomi surmise that the girl had that great of an upbringing. In a VRMMO world, your appearance could be adjusted to some extent, but faking your manner of walking and posture was ineffective.

Sitting down on a seat beside a table, the Battle Miko girl gave a graceful bow to the store's nekomata.

"One mamekan. Also, some matcha please."

In addition to her face, even her voice was dignified.

(Hah…… A proper and cool beauty….. They really do exist, huh……)

As she absent-mindedly watched her in fascination, a nekomata brought a tray on its shoulders from the kitchen.

Having placed the respective bowls in front of Koyomi and the Battle Miko girl, the cat hastily lay down in a circular manner on a nearby zabuton.

"Oh, it's here it's here…… hm?"

"……Huh?"

The voices of Koyomi and the Battle Miko unexpectedly overlapped.

In front of Koyomi was a bowl with heaps of agar-agar and beans.

And, in front of be Battle Miko, some warabimochi with kinako was quivering.

"Umm. Mister cat, this is——"

Realising the mistake in the orders, she attempted to shake the nearby black cat awake.

——A claw strike in the blink of an eye and her HP was reduced by 1.

"……W-why you brute! You're one who made the mistake!?"

As if saying that it were no concern of his, the cat lowered its ears.

Holding the scratched hand, Koyomi moaned. It was meaningless to complain to an AI cat any further.

The Battle Miko girl hastily rushed over to her.

"A-are you all right? You were scratched just now——"

"Yeah, I'm fine, I'm fine. That practically had no damage s…...o?"

——She could not entrust the store employees with anything. And the goods the two seeked were in front of them.

Taking the bowl of mamekan into her hands, Koyomi faced the Battle Miko girl with a smile of satisfaction.

"Say, making use of the opportunity to switch orders, shall we eat together? I'm Koyomi! Onee-san, what's your name?"

Having forcibly moved to the girl's table, the Battle Miko girl showed some bewilderment for just a moment but instantly gave a slight nod.

"Umm…… My name is Nayuta."

There were no signs of annoyance in her words as she named herself.

Feeling relief at this, Koyomi's eyes glistened like those of a puppy. She was most pleased that her offer hadn't been rejected so far.

"Then, it's Nayu-san, right! I'd be happy if you'd call me 《Koyomi-oneechan》♪"

As she got carried away, knowing that it was unreasonable, Nayuta inclined her head in wonder.

"……Onee……? Well, umm…… I am a highschool student——"

"……Ooh, seriously, a real JK…… I mean! I'm the older one! Twenty-three years old! Working adult! OL!"

Slowly puffing out her chest, Koyomi declared in a smug face.

Nayuta placed her hand on her mouth and pondered for a bit with a serious expression.

"……Is that how you are roleplaying?"

"……No, for reals! I'm not a boke! Wait, what's with such a response on the first meeting! Nayu-san, are you perhaps from Kansai!?"

"No, I am from Kantou…… Excuse me. I am not well-versed in boke and tsukkomi——"

"As I keep saying, that's not what I meant! Let's step away from manzai! Because I haven't said anything funny! It was just an ordinary self-introduction!"

Although it seemed her hopes of being treated as an elder person quickly collapsed, she was able to receive a response that indicated that she could get along well with her. Most of all, a friend whom she could hope to have an honest girl talk with was precious to her by itself.

Koyomi secretly sent her feeling of gratitude to the black cat, whose mistake in setting the tables gave her this chance of conversation.



The black cat in question yawned, feigning ignorance——

And, using the conversation of the two girls as a lullaby, it continued slowly swinging its tail.

End



Idle Talk - The Shinobi's Reckless Remarks (Animate 2017 Bonus)


"Nayu-san is so unconsciously erotic that it's hard."

At the sudden reckless remark from the Ninja Koyomi, Detective Clevel moaned with a serious look.

"……Is that something I really have to hear? If you're going to stay in my office, I wish you'd at least pick a topic that wouldn't cause trouble if someone heard it."

At the Mistuba Detective Agency, which had entirely ended up becoming the meeting place for Nayuta and Koyomi, Clevel's complaint resounded fruitlessly.

Naturally, Koyomi wouldn't accept his complaints.

"Well, please listen. I mean, listen up. You're going to listen. Detective-san, you have an obligation to listen——"(2)

In the pose of a potter, Koyomi gave far-looking eyes, as if she were an entrepreneur who was talking about the future prospects of her business.

"You see. Nayu-san tends to catch your eyes with her overbearing figure, but the fact that you can only find eroticism in her appearance means that she's still an amateur. It's kinda like, her demeanor? Her posture? The way she holds her head up high with a stiff expression, yet she's kind, surprisingly easy to start a conversation with, amiable, and polite; she appears like a beauty, but feels cute inside? There's a gap between the unthinkable completeness exuding from inside of her and her risky figure, so what I'm trying to say here is hey hold yer horses listen to me Detective-san donncha run away I said donncha run away from me donncha start getting ready to log out hey hold it ya hear me."

As the detective opened his menu window in silence, Koyomi grabbed his arm from the side.

Giving up on escaping, Clevel let out a deep sigh.

"……Is what you're saying allowed because of the same sex? If I said something like that, it would bring out some concerns and, in the first place, I don't share your views. Don't drag me into this."

"Nah, we're having a serious talk here. Detective-san, don't you feel any lust for Nayu-san? It's Nayu-san we're talking about here, ya know? She's that cute, ya know? That's so dangerous. If times were better, it would probably be regulated. Actually, she should be safeguarded as an endangered species. I'm being serious that we have such an obligation."

"……At least tell such jokes with a laugh. It's really scary how light has completely left your eyes."

"Ahahahahaha! Nayu-san! Is too cute! That really is bad!"

"……Sorry, it's actually better if you don't laugh. It's seriously scary. Right now, I'm seriously considering whether I should report you to the appropriate institutions."

He did have faith in Koyomi, but he was unsure how to handle the modest madness that he could sometimes get a glimpse of from her words and actions.

Koyomi somewhat lowered her voice.

"Well, jokes aside. Dangerous things are dangerous, that cuteness of hers…… Currently, she's in a girls' high school, so it seems it's hard for undesirables to approach her, but if she goes to university, it would be likely for her to have stalkers, especially knowing about her family and that she's living alone, Onee-san is really really worried…… I want her to live with me Osaka for reals when she's in university, so, Detective-san, could you help me convince her?"

"You're pushing too much it yourself…… That's definitely an attraction you have there."

Koyomi gave an expression of pouting with her lips.

"I may be a bit attracted. I've known Nayu-san for a short time so far, but I kinda, like…… she's too stiff and has a hard time exposing her vulnerabilities. Usually, your family would cover for that, but if that's impossible, an adult in her environment has to do it. I want to make a girl like Nayu-san happy as best as I can and, personally, I do love her; while I'm at it, I plan to show no mercy to any undesirables, with some jealousy included, and, Detective-san, be sure sure to control yourself, okay? If you do anything to make Nayu-san cry, I'll employ any method in my arsenal to destroy you, got it? The part before this was just a joke, but I mean it for reals now, got it?"

"……The first half was so nice and I was beginning to think that you'd end it as such, but the fact that you made your usual threats has actually given me relief. You don't have to worry, I have confidence in my reason."

The detective replied with his usual shady smile and Koyomi gave him a glassy-eyed look.

"……Reaaally? But it's Nayu-san we're talking about? Those breasts, ya know? They're not just huge, but their form is also great, they're lively, and, on top of being thick and heavy to a great extent, Nayu-san is bashful, ya know? Do you really have confidence in being able to endure that? I don't."

"Being able to endure what and how?"

"Obviously touching, rubbing, burying your face in them, and enjoying the smell. Incidentally, even when you want to commit various acts, she just gives you permission with a 〝if you insist〟; her simpleness is charming! Occasionally, her being too simple is a worry, but even that part is kinda ero——"

Koyomi abruptly shut her mouth.

Without saying a thing, the detective turned his gaze towards the window. It wasn't because he could see something interesting, he just simply didn't want to look at what was inside the office.

Behind Koyomi, the Battle Miko girl was giving a sweet smile, filled with kindness.

"Koyomi-san. You sure were having fun talking about something, right? May I join the conversation?"

"……Yeah. Are you okay with a conversation about the new sweets in the Bakeneko Tea House……?"

"That is fine. But, before we change the topic, there is something you would like to say, right?"

"……………………Forgive me."

Clevel silently ignored the conversation between the working adult kneeling in dogeza atop the sofa and the Battle Miko who began a serious lecture with a smile. If possible, he wished they would take it someplace else, but he was liable to end up as collateral damage if he chime in.



——And so, the next day in the Mitsuba Detective Agency.

"Nayu-san's relaxed attitude when she's angry is so erotic that it's hard."

"……You sure don't learn your lessons."

End


TBA


Notes

1. ^ A slang abbreviation of joshi kōsei (女子高生, high school girl). The following paragraph mentions some players with "j" and "k" in their names as examples that she did NOT have in mind.
2. ^ With each sentence here, Koyomi is using more and more forceful grammatical constructs.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for the release!

    Just a few suggestions:

    Now, VR-related tools are finally starting to appear in the world and, although, OF COURSE, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR THEM to reach the levels of FullDive like in SAO, I am interested in its future developments

    Weird formatting on the word 'or':

    ... travels through existing railroads or a galaxy express...


    Just when the black cat, having received an order, retired into the KITCHEN, another visitor came to the restaurant.


    "……Is that something I really have to hear? If you're going to stay in my office, I wish you'd at least pick a topic THAT WOULD NOT cause trouble if someone heard it."

    At the Mistuba Detective Agency, which had entirely ended up becoming the meeting place for Nayuta and Koyomi, CLEVEL'S complaint resounded fruitlessly.

    o it seems it's hard for undesirables to approach her, but if she GOES to university, it would be likely for her to have stalkers,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1. Corrected, thanks.
      2. "Full-width text - was in English in the original text." That "or" was in English (actual, not Engrish) in the original text for some reason.
      3. Wow.... I have no idea how that one came about... thanks.
      4. Okay, that one was embarrassing too... that's what happens when I don't have editors. Thanks.
      5. Corrected.
      6. Corrected.

      Delete