Hachinan Volume 1 (1%)

Volume 1 – Prologue
I Suddenly Awaken to Find…

Author’s note: I sorta gave writing a go.
TL note: Mostly from webnovel since it’s faster to look up kanji that way, but I have volumes 1-3 as physical copies and… up until now it’s exactly the same as I can tell.

The names in this novel are all pronounced in the ‘German’ way. At least, the Japanese has them written so that I know for sure they’re taken from their German equivalents.

e.g. not aasaa(アーサー) as we would read Arthur in English, but aataa(アーター) as the name ‘Arthur’ would be read in German.
– CH: names like Erich that have the ‘ch’ in it are written as a type of hissing sound (ッヒ) in an attempt to emulate the throaty ‘chh’ sound in German. Think the ‘ach’ in ‘achtung’, or the ‘ch’ sounds in Gaelic.
– W: ‘w’s are read as ‘v’s, so Wendelin would be phonetically to an English speaker as Vendelin.

第一話 ふと目が覚めると……。
Web Novel Chapter 1 – I suddenly awaken and find that…

第二話 夢うつつで今の己を知る。
Web Novel Chapter 2 – To come to know oneself in a trance

第三話 辺境最南端貧乏貴族家。
Chapter 3 – A poor noble family in the southernmost frontiers

IMG_0001 (Large)

IMG_0002 (Large)
イーナ Ina
ヴェンデリン(12歳) Wendelin (12 years old)
通称:ヴェル Nickname: Wel
エーリッヒ Erich
アルフレッド Alfred
エルヴィン Erwin
ルイーゼ Luise
ヴェンデリン(5歳) Wendelin (5 years old)
通称:ヴェル Nickname: Wel
IMG_0005 (Large)

“Oh? Where’s this?”

As usual, I woke up to the sound of my 6AM alarm clock, quickly prepared to leave for work, on the way there stopped at a convenience store, picked up onigiri and the like for breakfast as well as oolong tea to wash it down, and whilst eating it, headed to work.

I, Ichimiya Shingo, am a 25 year old that everyone knows at least by name. After graduating from university, I entered a company, and have been working for threeyears now as a subordinate of someone younger than me, and stuck between him and the superiors, I pass each day feeling stressed.

But, that’s something that everyone more or less experiences, and as for feeling like actually leaving the company because of that, it didn’t happen much for me.

If you’re a normal working adult, it’s normal to think about quitting at least once, after all.
Because you don’t have the courage, nor the assets to quit, you leave it at just a thought.

I live in an apartment complex roughly 10 minutes walk from work, and since I don’t have a wife nor a girlfriend, I mostly eat out.
Tired from work, I sleep until the very last minute the next morning, and then on days off I take care of the laundry or cleaning that’s piled up, but even this what you could call an average lifestyle.

Japan is probably flooded with people like me.

I’m not particularly dissatisfied about this, and while maintaining this lifestyle working for the company, I might find a girlfriend at work, get married, and have a child.

This is surely what you would call a mediocre life.

Or so I was thinking, but…

Despite waking up like usual without even remembering my dreams, come to think of it, I can’t hear the usual clamour of the alarm clock.

I don’t know what time it is, but it’s still dark out.
The room is pitch-black, but even so my eyes slowly grew accustomed to the dark, and raising my body, I began to investigate my surroundings.

When I did, I slowly began to realise a number of things wrong with this.

Even though this should’ve been a room in my apartment, I couldn’t see the wallpaper I was used to, nor a single piece of my furniture, and around me were three beds just the one I was in.

Including my bed, that makes four.
When I looked closer, I could see shapes that looked like people under the blankets.

In other words, this was probably a room of four.

Just when did I get all these freeloaders?

Shaking my head to clear out the confusion from the sudden change in my surroundings, I tried my best to determine my situation.
When I did, as expected, I found that various things had changed from when I had gone to sleep.

First of all, though it should’ve been my high-class bed from Ni**ri, in its place was some old-fashioned and not particularly comfortable looking bed.

[TL: Nitori is a furniture company]
Of course the blanket was worn-out, and a little smelly too.’I’d only just bought that blanket a week ago, too…’
Though some cheap-skate thoughts like that came to mind, I immediately pulled myself together, and this time checked how my own body was.”(Huh? Hasn’t my body gotten smaller)?”I’m by no means a tall person, but even so I was a Japanese person of average height. But now, however you looked at it, I had shrunk to the size of a child.”(Eh? This is-?)”

Those stories of reincarnating in another world that I’d seen lately on the net immediately came to mind, meaning that I’d been deeply sinful, but considering that I’m not a baby, it could be that the people in this world know who I’m supposed to be.

“(Which means…)”

It’s dark right now, and though the people next to me are sleeping, if I clumsily make a racket, it might seem that I’m crazy.

First of all, it isn’t clear what relationship the owner of this body has with the three sleeping in bed.
The possibility that they’re family is high, but I have no idea who they are.

“(Anyway, until I figure out the situation, I’d better stay quite. Now then, to sleep…)”

While I was thinking, I was suddenly hit by a wave of sleepiness, and like that I ended up returning to bed.

*   *   *

“Another boy, huh… This makes the eighth.”

“But dear, look at what a healthy boy he is. We need to give him a fitting name.”

“You’re right. Shall we name him Wendelin? The chance of this boy inheriting the Baumeister House is basically zero, though.”
[TL: the w in Wendelin is pronounced a bit like a ‘v’, Dutch/German style]

It seems that somehow or other, I was born as the Baumeister family’s 8th son.
No, strictly speaking, should I say that the one I hijacked is the 8th son?

And once the conversation continued, I found out that this Baumeister family was a low ranking noble family that presided over three villages of about two to three hundred people each.
The present head of the family, Arthur von Baumeister, was for better or worse a normal 40 year old man, and had a wife that was also from a low ranking noble family, and a mistress that was the daughter of a village chief.
[TL: approximately ‘art・her fon bau・mice・ter’]

Between his two wives were, I, Wendelin included, 8 boys, and 2 girls. I learned this, and their names.

However, for a low ranking noble who presides over eight-hundred people at best to have ten children…
He’s at such an age already, so I ended up really wondering if he understood the concept of family planning.

From information that I’ve already gathered, I’ve come to understand that the world I’m in is extremely similar to medieval Europe.
Even if they give birth to children, there is probably no guarantee that they’d all reach adulthood.

It wouldn’t be good to have only one child, and there’s no guarantee that the legal wife would be able to give birth to children, so they permit mistresses as well.

But this many children is probably too many.
If he isn’t careful about it, it’s quite capable of becoming the cause of some family quarrel.

The children of a mistress are pitiful, but that isn’t the case this time.
According to the memory of this body, the mistress whose face I haven’t even seen yet, seems to be the mother of two boys, and two girls, but it seems that there are plans to make the boys the successors to a village chief, or to have them marry the daughters of some wealthy farmer that has no son.

It seems that it’s also been decided already that the girls will marry.

The girls have it good.
Their future has been properly decided on, after all.

As for the remaining six brothers borne by the legal wife, since I was the eighth child, I was making fun of myself and thinking that I was the mistress’ child, but it seems that I’m a child borne by the almost forty-year old legal wife.

Or more like, I would rather he not make a woman of her age bear a child.
However you look at it, it’s a poor territory, so it’s probably for economic reasons that he took a young mistress.
Speaking about it in reverse though, you could also say that they were a happy husband and wife.

“Dear, Wendelin might have skill in the sword or magic.”

“If it turns out to be the case, would there be a chance that he’d become independent then?”

From what I should perhaps call the memories of this little child that I hijacked, looking at this information from the perspective of an outsider, I gradually came to understand the position I was now in.

First of all, I had hijacked the eighth son born to a lower-ranked noble family, despite the age of his parents; the five year old Wendelin (six by Asian counting).

Though I’d been born into a family of nobility, because there were too many children, I obviously wouldn’t inherit the territory.
If handled badly, or more like, the chance that I won’t be able to even live like a noble is high.

Thinking about it normally, the eldest son is the inheritor, the second son is the back-up, and the third son has no choice but to make his own way in life.
It might be different if they were a great noble family ruling over a large territory, or a family that had served an important office in the nation’s centre for generations, but for this poor noble family that’s good at nothing but having children, I think that too much shouldn’t be expected of the considerations for the futures of the third son and onwards.

Which means…
I, a person who should’ve been sleeping in my apartment in modern Japan, didn’t have the leisure to rejoice about the word 『Magic』 that had popped up earlier.

Though I don’t know what age is considered an adult in this world, I have no choice but to procure the skills I need to live on my own before that time arrives.

“(There’s no good in rushing things either, but if I do nothing but play around because I’m a kid, I won’t be able to live a good life…)”

After that, I continued to view a digest of Wendelin’s life from the perspective of an outsider, and when I woke up, I did my best to gather information so that my new family didn’t become suspicious of me.

Volume 1 – Chapter 1 [1/4 done]
A Poor Noble Family in the Southernmost Frontiers


Perhaps I should call it ‘sleep learning’ or something? Anyway, immediately after obtaining Wendelin’s information, I woke up, and after that I had breakfast in the estate with my brothers who had woken up as well.

Though I say ‘estate’, it’s the home of a poor, lower class noble family.
As an estate in its own right, it does have a number of rooms, as well as a library and storehouse with food, money, goods, and arms, but how I honestly felt was that it was the house of a rich farmer family at best.

Really, the only ones who have their own rooms besides the 45 year old head, Arthur, and his 44 year old legal wife, Johanna, are the 25 year old eldest son, Kurt, and the 23 year old second son, Herman.
[TL: Johanna is sort of like yo・hahn・nah. (The ah’s here are short ones like in ‘barn’, and not the one in ‘hand’)]
[TL: Kurt is sort of like kerrt.]
[TL: Herman is sort of like hairr・mahn]

The other four, me included, were crammed into the same room.
The third son, Paul, is 19, the fourth son, Helmut, is 17, and the fifth son, Erich, is 16.
[TL: Helmut is sort of hell・moot]
[TL: Erich is sort of like erihhhk. It’s written in Japanese as ‘Erihhi’.]

Truly, this is what people refer to as the sorrow of a heyazumi.
(Heyazumi(部屋住み): eldest son who hasn’t gained his inheritance yet, or second son an below who still live with their parents)

It’s a problem that comes up a lot in historical novels.

Moreover, Layla, the 31 year old mistress, usually lives at her parents’ house in a detached villa, together with Walter, the 14 year old sixth son, Karl, the 13 year old seventh son, Agnes, the 11 year old eldest daughter, and Corona, the 10 year old second daughter.
[TL: Walter → vall・ter]

Their names alone feel kind of like fine, German nobility, but the conditions are enough to make you go

‘It’s this bad, huh?’
no matter the world.
And although I gained information in last night’s dream, it seems that that the legal wife and mistress are on bad terms, or that there aren’t many rooms that can fit this many people is the same in any world.

Moreover, the children of the mistress don’t need to undertake training to be a noble like the sons of the legal wife do.
As a result, it seems that we don’t come into contact much with the other children.

Wendelin in my memories only met them a few times as well.

For us to not have much contact with the sons who would be the successors of someone important to the region like a village chief were problems for the head of the family and his wife to think about, but it wasn’t like I was going to succeed as head, so it was probably fine.

There were also servants who maintained the estate, but they were employed by the previous head, and included the 70 year old Abel, as well as four maids, but if the maids were young, my father Arthur who thought nothing of family planning might end up impregnating one, so they were all old ladies from the village.

There were also subordinate warriors who were commanded as armies during wartime, but they basically worked in the village as farmers, workers, hunters, or smiths, so they didn’t stay at the estate, and all of them commuted from their home to work.

In a poor backwater village like this, distinguishing workers from soldiers was nothing but a fantasy.

During emergencies, the head of the region would produce soldiers for the lord they had sworn allegiance to.
For that reason, though they had received a territory, small though it may be, they hadn’t participated in the core of a war for over 200 years.

To begin with, the Knight’s Territory lorded over by the current head Arthur von Benno Baumeister was on the southern reaches of the Kingdom of Helmut.
[TL: Knight’s Territory(騎士領) is the Japanese translation of rittergut, a part of the medieval German nobility system. It refers to a landed territory presided over by a noble who swore to serve his lord as a knight.]

At present, the country that the Kingdom of Helmut was most likely to see war with was the Holy Empire of Urquhart that more or less bisected the Ringaia continent.
Furthermore, these two countries, Helmut and Urquhart, were devoting a lot of capital and labour into developing their underdeveloped southern regions and northern regions respectively.
[TL: Urquhart → arr・kahrt]

In other words, these two nations didn’t have to surplus to waste on war.

Even so, it seems that over these last two hundred years, they would raise their armies once every few years.
But, because it was a waste of men, money, food, and goods, they would end up signing a ceasefire treaty at the border.

Furthermore, after that, the two countries would begin to trade, and these days with the exception of a few hardcores, nobody spoke of war at all.

It seems that things would finish just before escalating into a war.
You could say this was lucky.

“Dear, what is the matter?”

There was rye bread and a soup with vegetables and small pieces of meat inside, flavoured with nothing but salt.

It was a really tasteless meal, but it seems that just being able to eat meat in the morning was testament to being nobility.
Nobility ate three meals a day, and peasants would eat two.

For a diet of bread and soup, it seems that social class didn’t make much of a difference in their meals.
Perhaps just a change from hard rye bread, to soft white bread, and with the white bread, jam, butter, cheese, and tea or the like.
Also the utensils for drinking the soup would be more extravagant.
It wasn’t that big of a difference.

It seems that there was a considerable difference between the rural areas, and the urban areas, but that was the extent of what I’d heard about it.
I won’t know if this is true until I travel to other areas myself, though.

It’s just bad news, but it seems that the Knight’s Territory that we of the Baumeister rule over is on quite the poor side of things.

“It’s about the request to establish an Adventurer’s Guild, but it seems that it was completely rejected.”

“Well, there are probably countless other jobs you could do, after all.”

“It’d be improve the region, it’d be convenient to access too, and it seems that there are lots of other things about it that’ll pay well.”

My new father Arthur was scowling before of his half-finished soup.

Earlier I found out that there was magic in this world, but this time I was able to confirm that Adventurer’s Guilds existed as well.
After all, I had thought that for magic to exist meant that adventurers who hunted living beings like monsters for a living also existed.

“The monsters in our territory are tough after all…”

“Father, at this point, we have to gather an army and wipe them out in one go.”
[TL: Father → Chichiue(esteemed father)]

“Kurt, we can’t do that. After all, it wouldn’t do to repeat the mistakes that happened with the late Margrave Bleichröder.”
[TL: Bleichröder → blai・hhhk・roeur・der]

Kurt-niisan, the eldest son and heir had proposed ‘How about we gather an army from our territory, and suppress them in one go?’, but he was rejected by our father Arthur.

“Um… Father?”

“What is it, Wendelin? If you’re after more soup, there isn’t any left, you know.”

According to last night’s dream, I was the eigth son, currently 6 years old.
Moreover, there was a 7 year age difference between the seventh sona nd I.
My seat at meals was at the very end, and this family was poor.
Though all I did was ask a question, the fact that it seemed like I was asking for seconds could be seen as proof of my family’s poverty.

“No, I’m not asking about the soup, but about what happened to the punitive force that the margrave of the Bleichröder territory gathered.”

“Oh, a few years ago, after negotiating the interests of a certain few, there was a request for him to subjugate the monsters in the Baumeister region…”

It seems that there was a gut-wrenching request to the count along with some appropriate concessions, but the attack on the monster region was handled badly, and after needlessly provoking them, the Bleichröder margrave’s 2000 man army suffered devastating losses.

Immediately afterwards, someone else became the Margrave of Bleichröder, and the first thing the new count did was rebuild his draft army. It was a heavy loss.

“This is something that the new margrave said to us.

‘Accepting interests in another fief is unbefitting of nobility’.

The point is that they won’t get involved with the monsters of the Baumeister region a second time.”

It seems that I’ll have no choice but to grow up in an outrageously terrifying place.
Once I thought this, the soup suddenly tasted bad.

In reality, it was flavoured with nothing but a little salt, so it wasn’t really tasty in the first place, though.