[Choukansha Fair 2018 SAO] The End of the Summer and the Straw Hat


Those who have read our recent SAOP4.1 translation will probably know this already, but Dengeki Bunko hosts an annual gratitude event called the Dengeki Choukansha (great gratitude) Fair, during which people can receive various bonuses for buying select Dengeki Bunko LNs marked with a special band. These bonuses include things like keychains, and leaflets with 4 page short stories for popular Dengeki series. This year's fair began just a week ago and, as you may have guessed, SAO is one of the series that got a short story (AGGO got one too, but that's a topic for another time). And, as you may have also guessed, I got the raws for the story (thanks to https://twitter.com/Takargo!) and have decided to translate this short, seeing as we had taken a bit of a break at the beginning of the month. This year's theme for the shorts appears to be swimsuits, so we've got a bikini Alice for the cover illustration.

This story is set in-between Alicization and Unital Ring, so you may want to be caught up with Defan's Alicization translations before reading this story, though it doesn't really spoil much (assuming you already know about Alice). As the cover should imply, the story will be about swimsuits, but don't expect actual swimsuit scenes here just because of that.

On a side note, is it just me, or is this story hinting that Eiji will become relevant again in Unital Ring... Hmm...

Full-width text emphasises that actual English words were used in that instance.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Credits

Raws: Takazuki
Translation: Gsimenas




SAOP4.1 (Choukansha 2016 story)
Agil and Klein's Exciting Meal (Choukansha 2017 story, translated by Defan)
Summer Memories (Choukansha 2019 story)


The End of the Summer and the Straw Hat


"I would like to see this thing you call the sea at least once. We only had rivers and lakes in Underworld, after all."

One day at around nine thirty in the morning in the final days of August, Alice brought up such a topic while my sister Suguha and I were watching a travelling programme on TV with her in the living room.

I haven't been able to go to the seaside even once this summer either——come to think of it, I haven't had the chance to go to any mountains, rivers, or pools either, but I'm not exactly an outdoor person and it's too late to do anything this year, so I figured I'd just do better next year. On the other hand, despite having grown into a fine VRMMO player, Suguha still loved spending her time outside, so the moment she heard Alice's words, her eyes sparkled as she cried out.

"I wanna go the seaside too! I wanna go I wanna go I wanna go~~oo!

After exchanging glances and pleasant smiles with each other, the two girls unanimously directed their gazes my way. Retreating to the edge of the sofa, I attempted putting up some meagre resistance.

"Though, Sugu…… what about your summer homework?"

"I took care of that little ol' thing an entire week before you did, Onii-chan! C'mon, let's~~go~~already~~"

Despite her shaking me by the shoulders, as her older brother, I couldn't just bluntly refuse my little sister's request after forcing her to worry so much about me during this summer.

"Okay, okay. But, you see, my bike can only hold two people…… I'll try asking Klein if he could give us a ride, but if he says no, you'll just have to give up on that idea."

"Yippie!"

"Thanks, Kirito."

Responding with an awkward smile to the two pleased girls, I grabbed my handheld.

Although I did expect as much to some extent, Klein didn't even take ten seconds to reply with an 'OK'; when I also tried inviting Asuna, Liz, Silica, and Sinon to join us, all of them miraculously responded that they'd be available tomorrow. Seeing as we'd have a two-to-five gender ratio, maybe I should invite Nochizawa-kun as well…… or so I considered for a single moment; however, figuring that he wasn't quite mentally ready to hang out unreservedly with us, especially with Klein, I decided to pass on that idea. Writing down 'achieve a proper reconciliation with the guy someday' onto the ToDo list in my mind, I informed the two girls of the following.

"Klein, as well as Asuna and the other girls, have all said that they're free tomorrow."

"Woohoo!"

Having let out a not-so-ladylike cry, Suguha extended her hand to Alice.

"Now that that's settled, Alice-san, let's go shopping for swimsuits! You can find some rather cute ones on sale even in a place as remote as Kawagoe if we head to the station!"

"W…… whaa!?"

That shout did not come from Alice, but from me instead. Looking at the blue summer one-piece dress-wearing Alice, who had just been pulled up by Suguha's hand, I asked the following question in a fluster.

"A……Alice, you're planning to go into the sea?"

"What are you talking about; water fun without stepping into the water is like only practicing katas in kenjutsu."(1)

As she told me this in a stunned expression, I guess accepting the situation…… was out of the question.

"B-but the sea has salt water. Umm…… w-wouldn't it cause rusting or something……"

"You sure are making light of Rath's technological prowess, aren't you? This machine body is waterproof in up to twenty atmospheric pressure conditions."

"S-seriously……"

'Higa-san, why did you have to go so far……', muttering this in my mind, I stood up as well.

"Sugu, if you're going to the station, you two can make it alone, right? Just in case, get Alice a hat……"

"What are you talking about, Onii-chan, you're going too! I'll help you pick out your own swimsuit."

"Wha…… I still have that one from my rehab though……"

"Like you can let Asuna-san see you in something so completely utilitarian! C'mon, hurry up and get ready!"

'What's wrong with a functional design', muttering this, I changed to a different outfit in my room and went outside with the girls. Despite Alice's large straw hat, her golden hair and pure white skin were quite eye-catching; though, at least people wouldn't be able to identify her if she had some sunglasses on.

Chasing after the two girls as they walked to the bus stop, I subconsciously looked up to the sky. The end-of-August sun was still very much brimming with energy, thus its pure white light mercilessly burned my retina.

'While salt water is a concern too, will she really be okay with the heat and ultraviolet rays……', in contrast to such worries of mine, 'I wonder what kind of swimsuit Alice will pick out', I also felt a little bit expectant of what was to come.


SAOP4.1 (Choukansha 2016 story)
Agil and Klein's Exciting Meal (Choukansha 2017 story, translated by Defan)
Summer Memories (Choukansha 2019 story)


Notes

1. ^ A kata (型) is basically a scripted movement/posture in martial arts. In kendo specifically, a kata refers to a non-contact exercise where two participants act out scripted scenarios with wooden swords.

10 comments:

  1. Thanks a lot Gsi for such a fast release and, as always, top-quality work. Good job! ;)

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  2. I was expecting there more but i guest that fine .Great job translating as alway good sir

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  3. Thanks!!!
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     +     +
       ∧_∧ /
    +  ( n ´ ∀ ` n NEPUUUUU~~~♪
      /  ノ \
     +(__)_)+

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  4. Replies
    1. Yes, that's all of it. It's a 3 page (4 if you count the illustration) leaflet story, so it didn't really have any room to be longer than what you see here.

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  5. Hello!!! Is the story over? Will they launch more chapters to complete this story? I say this because I'm curious to know, how did they get to the beach? What did they discuss during the beach? ...

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    Replies
    1. Short stories like these are usually one-off stories written for some event. There are exceptions to the rule (such as the P4.1 story eventually getting a P4.2), but most of these aren't meant to receive a continuation, since only certain people would have been able to read them.

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