words by JUN TOGAWA | music by SEIJI TODA
To date the final Yapoos song, a spoken-word adaptation of a story Jun wrote for her book I Suck Sap, I am an Insect Woman. In the book, it was titled “Folly,” but this adaption has changed the title to “(something extra).”
This also marks my last Yapoos song to translate – with this, every single song by Yapoos has been translated. I’d like to thank everyone for their support and help over the past few years, and I hope that getting into Yapoos – and Togawa as a whole – is easier than it was when I first started listening to her. I still have Togawa songs I’d like to translate, but the bulk of my work, I think, is done, and I don’t know how to feel.
Thanks again everyone. I hope you’ve enjoyed Yapoos.
Translation and notes under the cut:
At a certain café, Girl A was told by Boy B, who she loved to death, to “break up with me.”
“I’ve fallen for a girl named Girl C. I’m sorry. I know it’s bad, but break up with me.”
Girl A was shocked. Sad. She cried.
“D-don’t cry, if you make me cry, it’ll be bad… just as I thought, ough…”
He was already unable to speak fake words of love, but Boy B was a kind man, and so even if just a bit, he wanted to soothe sorrow of Girl A.
“That’s it, as, as a breakup thing, y’know, we can both mutually exchange… one thing important to us. And, we’ll always hold on to it, like a memento. Hey, let’s do that. Tomorrow at 2PM, we’ll meet here again for the last time. Bring something here then. Hey, hey.” If it had been the normal Girl A, she probably would have meekly thought, ‘Ah, of course Boy B is so kind.’ But the mentality of a girl scorned changes from that of a normal girl to that of a demon cursed. Already, Girl A had begun to hate Boy B.
Girl A lifted her head.
“…got it. Tomorrow, once our exchange of important stuff is over, I’ll give up on you.”
“Ah, did you understand me, Girl A? You, you’ve got to find a man more wonderful than I, and be happy. But that’s all for today.”
Boy B relievedly left as if he was escaping. Girl A snickered to herself as she watched his back.
The next day, at the same café.
Girl A arrived a bit early. Boy B, he came.
“Didja bring it?” “Mhmm.”
Girl A’s eyes were red and bloodshot. Boy B, spurred by a feeling of guilt, thought to himself. (She probably spent all last night crying without getting any sleep… sad, but there’s nothing I can do about it.)
Boy B, as if he was finally breaking free from his chains, offered: “Alright, this… is mine. This is an old fountain pen my father bought me from a German antiques shop. I’ve taken good care of it. But I’m giving it to you.”
Boy B handed it to Girl A, and she took it. “Thank you.” Now it was Girl A’s turn.
“This is mine.”
Girl A, her eyes growing increasingly redder, held out a small white box.
“What is it?” “Open it.”
It was Girl A’s index finger, wrapped in oil paper. “Gyah!”
Boy B opened his eyes so wide it seemed as if they would fall out, shaking. Her eyes growing ever more bloodshot, Girl A said: “I think you probably understand… how this is my important thing. I chopped it off last night. Aah – it hurts, it hurts…”
Girl A was already devoid of sanity. Her voice, it grew louder than it ever had before, trembling. “This is what they call intense pain. So intense that I forgot how to get to this café from my house. But, because I left my house an hour earlier than we promised, it ended up getting here early, hehehe!”
Already Girl A had become unable to understand what she was saying. And Boy B was unable to hear anything. Only the rapid pounding in his chest.
“I, y’know, if I don’t have this, everything will be hard, but because you said something important, I’ll give it to you. If I don’t have it I’ll surely be in trouble, it’s important, this.”
And Girl A went to point at the interior of the white box. “Aaah,” Boy B groaned. Even as Girl A tried to point, her finger was inside the box.
“See, I’m already having problems.”
Boy B, driven by fear, went to run away.
“Wait!” “Aah!” “Please wait. Take this and go. So it isn’t in vain.”
Boy B was about to lose it.
“What d’you mean, in vain?”
“It’s true. You’ve got to take it back with you as a memento. What the hell do you think I cut it off for!!?”
Girl A, with her red eyes, dyed with blood, scowled at Boy B as if she was looking up to him.
And then she snickered to herself again. Boy B, while crying from fright, grabbed hold of the box tight and then took off in a hurry.
Girl A had already started work on her next move. In the face of that excess happiness, sharp pain so bad she could die shot through her right hand again. This time, she didn’t know if it was happiness, pain, or perhaps sadness. Large tears fell from Girl A’s face.
“Hahahaha. I’ll make him suffer even more.”
Half a month from then, Boy B and Girl C had grown close.
“By the way, Boy B?” “What is it?”
“It must have been, y’know, hard to break up with… your ex-girlfriend. Do you think she hates me?”
Boy B’s heart skipped a beat. (That’s right, since then, Girl A hasn’t shown her face, what happened to her? But, she did really say that if we did the exchange, she would give up on me, and meeting again would be absolutely out of the question. I’m happy now. Let’s stop thinking so hard about things.)
“You don’t have anything to be worried about. She was very understanding of it. There was no fighting or anything. That’s it – surely she must have had another man she liked as well, huh?”
He didn’t want to let Girl C know about Girl A’s finger. Boy B kept it all quiet.
“Alright, see you tomorrow!”
“Huh? Do you have plans? I thought you’d be coming by my place tonight.”
Girl C turned red. She was an innocent girl.
“Hehe. Sorry. I promised to meet a friend. Didn’t I tell you about that girl I know, the one I met at work?
All of my wise readers, I’m sure you already understand. This girl was Girl A.
“I’ll introduce her to you at some point. Until then!” “OK, see ya.”
They kissed and left.
Boy B, not wise, and Girl C, not knowing a thing, were unaware of the black clouds that covered them.
Shibuya station. Girl A was waiting.
“Did you wait long?” “No, I just got here.”
Girl A looked up where Girl C was working part-time, got to know her, and then moved in close to her quickly. Girl C felt sympathy for Girl A’s missing finger, and Girl A acted selfishly, continuing to deepen the false friendship.
After watching a movie, the two of them entered a café.
“Girl A, just like the theme of tonight’s movie, do you think that three-person male-female friendships are really doable?” “Makes sense. I don’t want to think in simple anachronistic worldviews.”
“Hmm. You’re right.”
Girl C sipped her black tea. “Yes. But, movies like the one we saw today, stoic coming-of- age movies, there’s less of them lately, huh? So I found myself thinking, like, I wanna watch this forever. Wasn’t it interesting?”
“Mhmm. I like it too, that kind of relationship.”
A thin smile began to show in Girl A’s mind.
“Hey, Girl C. Would you mind introducing me to your boyfriend?”
“Oh, of course! I was planning on it.”
“After watching that movie, I found myself wanting a boy that I can just be friends with.”
Girl C was smiling inside too. She believed in Girl A’s feigned innocence, and so it was a smile of friendship. But she found herself thinking (No, I can’t smile) soon enough. (I have to be respectful of the fact that she lost a finger in a car accident, and how she’s always felt more negatively towards boys.) Girl C was unaware of her own naiveté.
“It’s fine. He’s always been curious about you. And you about him. But, even as a mistake, don’t happen to get any romantic feelings for him. If my boyfriend and you, Girl A, manage to fall in love, I’ll be envious of the both of you. Because I don’t want to lose either of you, my boyfriend, and my close friend.”
“Hohoho, well, I think we could make a great trio together.”
Girl C was happy, imagining the sight of being supported from both sides by both a boyfriend and a best friend, with her in the center.
That day, Girl A and Girl C made some leisure plans. The plan was the three of them, Girl A, Boy B, and Girl C, would all go on a drive together.
Their goal was Mount D. Girl C was in high spirits.
“I’ll take care of the lunches!”
“Alright, then I’ll drive.”
That was the plan the two of them came up with.
Girl A and Girl C headed towards Mount D from the opposite side road. Boy B headed towards it from another road. And then, at a randomly-chosen site they would meet, and there Girl C would introduce Boy B and Girl A.
“Isn’t this dramatic, Girl C?”
Even while thinking – (Isn’t this a bit much?) – to herself, (but if you think about it, this kind of
introduction is like one of those stoic coming-of-age movies. Of course.) she wanted to see
her friend’s bright smile, and happily gave her consent.
The day of, Boy B arrived at the site they had decided on at Mount D first. Boy B was excited, dreaming about the close friend of his beloved Girl C.
The car Girl A and Girl C were in arrived.
“Hey! Here, here! …Huh? …Aah!!”
With a slam Girl A stepped out of the driver’s seat.
“Hohoho, what are you so surprised about? It’s been a while.”
From the passenger seat, Girl C screamed, her face pale.
“Boy B! Get out of here! She wants to kill you!”
Boy B’s legs were trembling.
“Girl A, just what the hell are you thinking?”
“Hohoho, I want to make you suffer. While coming here, I told Girl C about our past, about eeeeeverything. Eeeeeverything. She seemed pretty shocked, and your cute girlfriend threw up today’s breakfast in the car. It was gross. In the end, she said in the middle of the story that she ‘didn’t want to hear any more’ and tried to get out of the car, so I used these S& M handcuffs to fasten her to the steering wheel. This is the key. If you don’t have this, she’s not getting out!”
On Girl C’s wrist was an S&M handcuff, placed on her so tightly it pressed into her skin. Like Girl A said, the other cuff was fastened to the steering wheel. From Girl C’s wrist, the rest of her hand was a pallid white, without a trace of blush. Girl C cried as she faced Boy B and screamed.
“I said, run!”
“If you go and do something like running away, I don’t know what’ll happen to Girl C.”
Boy B was so scared he felt like he was going to die. He knew well already that this girl, Girl A, was terrible. But… just like when they broke up… but this time, it wasn’t just that he was afraid of Girl A. This time, Girl C was there too. Girl C was in danger. He couldn’t just up and run away.
“What do you want…”
“I said that I just want you to suffer. That’s all. So first, go stand on that ledge for me. Then turn around.” (If I do that, I’ll get pushed off!)
B found himself thinking suddenly. Cold and greasy sweat dripped from his temples to his jaw.
“No? Well, in that case, I’ll tinker with the engine and send Girl C and the car crashing off the cliff!”
Boy B’s eyes grew wide. “Well! If you come any closer, I’ll cut up Girl C’s face.”
Girl A had already drawn a climbing knife from her pocket, and the light of the sun was reflected in Boy B’s eyes by the blade.
“Alright! Please stand on the ledge with your back to me!”
Boy B couldn’t do a thing. There wasn’t anything to do except exactly as he was told.
“See it through, you miserable man…”
Girl A remembered more and more of her rage towards Boy B. The more she thought of him as miserable, she would think of herself, rejected by that miserable man, as even more wretchedly miserable.
Girl C couldn’t bear it, and pulled her arm strongly, but the handcuff digging into her wrist wouldn’t budge. Pathetic Girl C was already half-crazed, unable to do anything for Boy B except writhe futilely.
Girl A slowly grew closer to Boy B as he stood with his back to her on the edge of the cliff. As she took each step forward, incredibly wonderful thoughts raced through her chest. (This boy is my freedom. What should I do?) Girl A found herself thinking, gazing at the back of that wretchedly shaking man, Boy B. (What I want to… do most to this man now… what I want to make him do, something humiliating, something painful, something complex, something interesting… no! Of course this, this is the most satisfying, surely.)
Girl A pushed Boy B. “Kyaah!”
Girl C let out a shriek. “Ohhho…”
Girl A laughed loudly.
Miserable Boy B, however, had clung onto a rock at the nick of time, hanging there.
“You’re certainly trouble. Yay, yay.”
Girl A kicked at the struggling Boy B hard, trying to make him fall to the base of the cliff far below. Boy B hung onto the thick grass and rocks with dear life, and did not fall, however.
Girl A looked around to see if there was a branch near her.
“I’m gonna push you off!” “Stop it!”
Girl C. The moment she realized that Boy B was really going to be killed, she shot up from her seat and rushed desperately to Boy B, holding out her left hand to him.
Girl C’s right hand wasn’t there anymore. Her right hand was cut from the wrist, still hanging in the handcuffs in Girl A’s car.
Blood gushed from Girl C’s right wrist, dripping onto the ground.
Girl A was overcome with shock. She just stood there stupefied, watching Girl C hoist Boy B up.
“Boy B!!” “Girl C!!”
The two hugged tight. “You, you really love me that much?”
“I wanted to save you, and I couldn’t think of any other way but this! I love you!!”
They wailed as they embraced each other.
Boy B promised to himself that he would make up the part of her she lost in her hand with love.
And then he realized how much he really loved her.
Girl C did not regret her decision. She was simply happy that she could save Boy B.
The two really did love each other. They would never be apart again.
Girl A understood this well too. “I didn’t need to chop off my index finger. That was stupid. I really didn’t need to do something like that. I’ve lost. I should have stopped.”
Yet tears did not come.