Saturday, December 24, 2016

Youjo Senki Side Story

A Borrowed Cat


Translated by SifaV6




This was a case which had occurred during a chilly day.


An unprecedented case of desperate struggle which had lasted over 72 hours long, brought on to you by Second Mage Lieutenant Tanya Degurechaff.


In a certain district of the Imperial Capital Berun, she was currently isolated within the heart of the imperial military.


Facing against the onslaught of opponents that knew not of fear, her processing capabilities had finally reached the limited, causing the current situation to worsen to a point beyond salvaging.


As a holder of the Silver Wings Assault medal who had returned alive from the very horrors of the Norden battlefront, and to have even been bestowed with the sobriquet of “Mithril”, that was the kind of field officer Second Lieutenant Tanya Degurechaff was supposed to have been known as. Yet as of current, she was acting as if similar to that of new recruits, staring blankly at the unfolding event, clueless as to how to proceed.


It was a situation which would result in inevitable defeat regardless of how desperately she tried to struggle or to resist, in a way it could be described as utter humiliation. With a feeling of hopelessness encompassing her all, it was as if she could sense the state of her soul weakening by the moment.


However, even having reached this point, retreat was not an option.


For a soldier of the Empire, or even for a soldier in general, which is to say, towards any civilized humans of the modern society, this could be considered as a major breach of trust. Most importantly, even if emergency evasive actions were to be attempted, fleeing before the arrival of the enemy will result in capital punishment.


Advancing will lead directly into hell, yet to retreat would bring annihilation.


With that being the case, Tanya once more attempted to gather courage, determined to fight to the last breath.


Had I not resolved myself for death during the time when facing against the enemy squadron in Norden?


Had I not accompanied myself with that senseless lunatic, being forced to go through those countless deadly experiments?  


Yet nevertheless, I am here, having survived them all. That’s right, I lived. Nothing had caused me to yield.


My unbending resolve shall forever be loyal towards my free will and dignity.


Having grasped these feelings within her heart, Second Mage Lieutenant Tanya Degurechaff steadied her resolve, and decided to greet this incoming moment with conviction.


“Tanya-chan, are you there?”


How sad.


“All right! Today, I will definitely dress you up!!”


Not only my conviction…


“Since it was such a rare opportunity, I’ve prepared plenty of cute clothing for you to try on! We absolutely have to go through all of them!”


And my will to resist…


“Well then, here, hurry up and change!”


It seems that even my dignity…


“Also, this one is a brand new corset. Because Tanya-chan had previous mentioned it was hard to move, this time I chose a style that is more suited for outdoor activities. Now hurry and try it on.”


…today, at this very moment, all of them have been trampled upon.


The beginning of the matter was due to the order Tanya had received three days prior.


It was originally to have been a task that only required some “slight” assistance coming from Tanya, to be completed after having received the Silver Wings Assault medal, during her time assigned in the rear. Of course, this was not something which was limited to just the military, but for any given organization, the definition of the term “slight” when asked if it could be taken by its literal meaning, the answer given from the top always raises doubts as to if everyone was speaking the same language.


Regardless, the matter requested appeared not the slightest within the boundary of unreasonable, it wasn’t the likes of being used as an experimental subject resulting in being blown away by the invention of that lunatic, nor was it the need of having to engage in prolonged drawn out battles at the very forefront of the battlefield as a solitary unit. To simply put, it genuinely appeared to be something simple as answering a few questions to assist the spread of political propaganda.

In actual fact, at the time when receiving the mission document, everything had appeared to be normal. Following the instructions recorded in the mission document, the moment Tanya had knocked on the front doors of the Propaganda Department in her ceremonial military uniform, the gears began to turn awry.


Neatly tucking her hair underneath the crisp and shining peaked cap, with the Silver Wings Assault medal cleanly pinned across the chest according to military regulation, actively moving the arms and legs which had only recently been healed by the precision-based magic treatment exclusive for Aerial Mages after having been wounded during the time in Norden, intending to display the perfect military salute. Even the military boots were polished to a mirror-like state, her current appearance was to the point that even the drill sergeants from the Officer Cadet School were unable to find faults in.


“When in the Reich, in literal sense, one needs to act according to their status” ——having read through the content of the mission document, Tanya had made preparations in full. In the countless political propaganda photos which starred heroes past and present alike, it could be said that one commonality they shared was the magnificence of their uniform.


After all, the image of a person can be greatly influenced by the impressions gained on first contact, hence the way a person dresses could not be neglected.


——nevertheless, it appeared that a major mistake was made. Tanya couldn’t help but realize the reality of such matters.


The moment she had stepped into the interior, she could feel the concentrated stares together with the sound of sighing.


Without having the opportunity to voice words of refusal, Tanya was forcefully dragged to an unknown location by the female employees who were showing similar looks of disappointment as they chattered in the background.   


By the time her mind recovered, the newly purchased breeches had already been stripped away, the boots that she had spent half a day polishing were thrown. Although having barely managed to cling onto the coat, the peaked cap had also disappeared.


Resistance had been futile, what was forcefully pushed onto Tanya were instead shameful substitutes which she could never ever accept. A skirt with an inconceivable design which had fluttered as the hems fell close to touching the floor, along with high laced heels that one would never be able to march in.


Yet when compared against the words which had been uttered with a smile, perhaps there’s still… there’s still room left for discussion right?


“You have such beautiful skin, how wonderful! I had heard you were injured, but it looks like I was worried for nothing… The skills of the military doctors sure are amazing! Since your legs are nice and slender, in that case, maybe this one will do!”


The skirt had a fluffy kind of design. Yet despite of that, somehow, the style was such which revealed a considerable proportion of the legs when sitting down. And the final blow being delivered was a corset tightly strung around the body like that of a physical restraint.


Hurry…please hurry up and let it end. The last of Tanya’s fragile wishes had shattered with the passage of time, this process continued without stopping and lasted for half of an entire day. It was only after both her mind and body had crumbled that the female employees stopped with their hands. Finally…it’s finished. But just as a look of relief was about to surface on Tanya’s face, a single phrase had instantaneously caused her heart to freeze.


“Since this is only the first day, let’s leave the outfitting to here. Next will be the makeup!”


The first day? … The first day!?


There’s a next time? Tanya couldn’t help but to sway from the impact of psychological shock.


“Eh!? What’s wrong with your hair! Are you keeping proper care?”


“Yes? That is, according to the health regulations at least…”


Styling the hair according to the regulations. This can in a sense, be considered as one of the archaic traditions specifically made for the aristocrats that enlisted in the Imperial military. Due to the reasoning of “in order to correctly identify the genders among younger military personnel”, females that have yet to reach the legal adult age were required to maintain their hair at shoulder length. After further investigation, it appeared that such a rule was almost certainly directed towards young female aristocrats within the military.


How sad. Caught within the hard and fast rules of the Imperial military, even Tanya herself couldn’t help but be forced to grow her hair. Regardless, she was a person who perfectly fulfils their obligations. Having even measured it before, her hair length was exactly that of stated in the regulations.      


“Stop. Do you brush your hair?”


“My apologizes, about that…”


“The comb that you usually use is!?”


“Provided by the military…”


The most helpless part was, regardless of how Tanya tried to answer, her responses were unable to dissolve the hardened expressions of the surrounding women. The situation was worsening by the moment.


“Hang on, when you say provided, if I remembered correctly…aren’t those the ones made from celluloid?”


“That’s right.”


“How unbelievable! You will have to be retaught from scratch!”


As soon as the conversation had ended, multitude of combs and brushes had appeared spontaneously. Facing against such onslaughts, what was left of Tanya’s mind had weakened further to a point beyond.


… O Existence X, even if you were to appear now I would no longer care.

Since you so arrogantly proclaimed yourself to be God, then you should be able to quickly help me solve my hair problem. No, even I know such a thing is impossible. Even though I knew…


Tanya’s mind had begun to wander, pondering on things such as the meaning of life in order to pass time. However, just as she was about to completely submerge herself in her delusions, the feeling of an impending crisis emitted from the heat brought on by the soldering iron which had casually appeared in front of Tanya had once again caused her to come back to her senses.


“Um, please forgive my interruption, but is that…”


“Oh, what’s the matter, it seems that you do have an interest in this sort of things! As expected, I do believe your hair will gain a much better allure after having it permed. Well then, let’s give it a try shall we?”


“No, that is, um… do we have to use that soldering iron?”


“Of course, in order to create the waves for your hair”


The woman had then followed on with a smile, stating her full confidence in her skills at formulating swirls. However, for Tanya, the moment she had heard the words “perming”, the first thing that came to her mind was, no matter what, this has to be avoided.


“Ah, no, that is… it will get in the way of my military duty…”


“That does seem to be the case, how regrettable, it looks like I will have to endure for now. Well then, if that’s what it is, since it’s such a rare opportunity, we’ll definitely have to make sure the makeup will turn out to be perfect.”


“… My usual appearance is no good?”


Honestly speaking, even Tanya herself had thought that speaking such words was probably too late. Although it was hard to admit, but Tanya had been completely overwhelmed by the pressure emitted from the female workers. Nevertheless, she still had to muster up her courage and ask why her uniform had been rejected.


“My goodness, couldn’t you understand just how crude and coarse those uniforms were? It would have been fine even if you acted a little bit more feminine. Even as a soldier, there’s no clause stating that you must behave like a man.”


“No, it’s because doing so is much easier for me.”


“Ara ara, but at the least, you should give it a try. There’s still four days left until the appointed day, so let’s give it your all until then!”


The outcome was outright rejection which could be interpreted by its literal meaning.


——If I knew this was going to happen, even if it is the battlefield, I wouldn’t mind returning.


Just how many times had this thought occurred in my heart?


This sort of treatment had lasted for three days. Whether it was the feeling of discomfort brought on by the foundation, the unfamiliarity feel of the lipstick, or even the restraint caused from the corset, everything had been endured.


…If this was the kind of patriot that the Propaganda Department was truly seeking, then so be it… if I were to treat this as an order… then there’s no other choice.


Kill myself.


This is work. Smile, now hurry up and smile.

“Pleased to meet you! I am “Mithril”, Tanya Degurechaff!”

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