Hi! So yeah, “already” another chapter. It was my rest day, so don’t expect a release everyday. But the good thing his I found a way to translate without being frustrated. I just do something, then translate a few lines, then do something else, and back to translation, etc… I think I’m in better conditions by translating little by little rather than in one go.
So, here’s the chapter. If you want to help fix sentences you find weird, feel free. If you want to comment on the translation (I really want someone with japanese knowledge to tell me how is my translation) fell free too.
Chapter 2 – Well, what shall I do now…?
Skillfully spreading its green wings, a bird was dancing in the sky.
No matter which direction one looked, the horizon was spreading as far as eyes could see.
A continuous sea of sand.
Sometimes, a breeze would slowly erase every trace of human activity that was above the sand.
Footprints, wheel tracks, and dead bodies.
While flickering, the sun sank in the earth. Before long, it became a long line faintly illuminating the ground. In the interval between day and night; black, bitter orange, blue, the sky was painted in many different layers of colors during a short time.
As if scoffing at the people crawling on the earth, the bird danced.
The bird rapidly went towards the gigantic rampart in the west, as if chasing after the long shadow it cast on the ground.
There, was an excessively gigantic structure.
Flying high in the sky, the bird was looking down on the whole thing.
The span was about 4000 zals, and the overall width about 15 000 zals. (1 zal is aproximately 1 meter)
The Fortress City with a huge spire in its center whipped up a cloud of sand as it moved.
「Ah, not good. I can’t do it anymore」
Uttering his sixth complaint of the day, the boy was on the outer wall of the giant sprinting structure. Despite climbing continuously for four hours, he hadn’t even passed half of its whole height. (TL: It’s actually 2 koku, which is an archaïc mesure of time. 1 koku = about 2 hours)
The summit was still distant, and the ground was already too far to give up and jump down.
For the boy who lived in the flat desert, it was his first time being in such a tall place.
While inserting knives in between the stones, he slowly climbed aiming for the top. Although he was frightened by the big vibrations that came at times, he clenched his teeth and continued to climb.
「I… I arrived」
When the boy finally arrived at the top of the rampart, quite an amount of time had passed since the sun set.
As the darkness thickened, the brightness of the crescent moon increased. Most people would have already finished eating their dinner by this time.
After peeking his head out over the edge and looking around restlessly, the boy climbed up, tumbling onto the rampart.
Luckily there was not even a shadow on top of the rampart.The boy let out a big breath and lied down in a 『大』 form. His breath was rough, his arms had already lost all sensations, and his legs were trembling.
「I can’t use them anymore. Thank you for your work. 」
Still lying down, he threw down the two knifes grasped in his hands, which had their edge broken, from the rampart.
After putting his breath in order by lying down a little, he looked down inside the rampart; the boy gasped.
In front of the boy, who was born among people who had lived their entire lives in the sea of sand, spread a sight he had never seen before.
With the gigantic spire of the Fortress as its center, a stone paved road was spread out radially.. On both its sides were countless stone buildings. From the window of each building, a warm light which seemed to be from spirit stones was leaking out. From a few chimneys, smoke originating from late dinner preparations was rising up.
「A… Amazing. So this is the town where the Nobles live」
The boy muttered unintentionally.
For the boy raised among the People of the Desert who had no specific residence, wandered, and slept under the sand, the sight was like looking into a different world.
It wasn’t like he had never seen a house made of stones. On the sides of the oases resided, though few in number, the people called Ilnobles.
However, it was the first time he saw so many structures orderly standing in a row.
In this Country of the Desert, people were separated into three categories.
Mobile Fortress; living inside these ramparts, the Nobles. Outside the ramparts; residing on the sides of the few oases, the Ilnobles. And then, the People of the Desert.
When there was a need to execute a criminal, the Nobles only needed to banish them to the desert. Because for them, the outside of the rampart was the same as Hell. The temperature approached 50 degrees during the day, and fell below 0 during the night. There were also groups of Giant Worms whose length reached 1 000 zals.
The Nobles didn’t think of the People of the Desert, who could live in this Hell, as humans. They were only called Bugs with scorn. (TL: Translated as Worm in the previous chapter, this time there is Furigana, so I changed it to Bug)
So far, when Ilnobles traders would come to supply food occasionally, even though they were called Bugs, they didn’t particulary mind it.
However, what was sprouting in the boy’s heart right now was a slight feeling of envy.
The boy was, as if engrossed, gazing at the night view while sitting on his knees for a long time, but he couldn’t afford to remain like that forever.
「Well, what shall I do now…?」
He really had no plan.
It wasn’t like the boy was telling a joke. In the first place, infiltrating this Fortress City was mostly on impulse.
In the middle of climbing the rampart, the pain and the tension fell, and a feeling of despair came to him after he calmed down. With this low tension, the pain of climbing the rampart was indescribable.
Why did he sneak into the Fortress City? That was because he had an objective.
There was a goal, but no plan.
It’s a little late, but let’s say it: the boy had a relatively reckless character.
The boy had only one objective: save his little sister.
Even if she was called his sister, she was his stepsister. She was the daughter of the adoptive parents who had raised the boy because he had lost his parents prematurely, Her name was Kisaragi. (TL: I use Stepsister, but it should actually be Sister-in-law, or Foster Sister. Is Stepsister fine too in the english language? Hopefully, only Little Sister will be used in the future)
Since she was small, Kisaragi kept saying 「When we’re adults, I’ll become An-chan’s bride 」 The boy was living in a tribe with few people, so it was rather natural that such a thing would happen. However, he couldn’t deny the feelings of dread when remembering his drumming little sister who looked like a perfectly dedicated wife.
That’s aside, let’s return to the subject.
This morning, after returning from fetching water at the oasis, the tribe’s figure had disappeared from where the camp should have been. Only one person, his childhood friend one year younger than him, Heiza, was waiting for him sitting cross-legged on the sand.
「U-uh, the-they are, ab-about 4 farzals (approximatively 20 kilometers) in the south fr-from… here」
Looking at the boy, Heiza, whose bangs were long enough to completely hide his eyes, answered with the same cowardly voice as usual.
「So suddenly. Apart from me, aren’t there other people who didn’t come back?」
「Uh, huh. Th-that’s why they to-told m-me to wait here. They didn’t move, they ra-ran away」
「Ran away? Did a Flood happen?」(TL: Kanji say Sand Flood, Furigana only Flood)
「It-it’s different. We were a-attacked by a Mobile Fortress」
「Uh, huh. Ma-many Nobles appeared and they ch-chased us」
「Was everyone alright?」
「Uh, huh. No-nobody was in-injured. …But」
Heiza faltered for a moment, then he hesitantly opened his mouth.
「Ki-Kisaragi was ta-taken a-away. 」
After that, he couldn’t really remember.
The boy straddling a galloping donkey thought he heard Heiza shouting to restrain himself, but it was trivial. Like this, he ran throughout the day. After discovering this Mobile Fortress, he jumped on the surface of the wall with the momentum from the donkey’s back.
These were his actions after hearing that his little sister was kidnapped by the Mobile Fortress. With such a way of thinking, it was inevitable if he was called a Bug.
Because he was already here, it couldn’t be helped. As it was, there was no way to go back.
Somehow, he had to find the whereabouts of Kisaragi.
「As expected, I can only ask to someone, huh… 」
To some extent, he may need to be violent.
The boy confirmed the feel of the specialized weapon hanging at his waist by touching it.
Sheathed in a scabbard was a gently curved slender blade. Originally, it was something that shouldn’t be here. It was a japanese sword with the inscription Osafune.