Anyway, I won't be able to do it until summer, due to work and the fact that I still don't have info on a lot of the chapters not yet published by TP. I'm planning on purchasing the Singapore editions sometime in May/June (by which time I'm guessing/hoping they'll have finished the series). But when I do, I'm going to want some help and advice from other fans, so I hope I will be able to find that from some of you.
Anyway, all of this is preface to some questions about some continuity issues in the series that I’ve been pondering and I'm not sure how to resolve. I was wondering if anyone, especially those of you who are more "spoiled" than I am (and/or have more knowledge about translation discrepancies) could shed some light on these things.
First, in the thread in the Spoiler Free area of RF.com about the ages of the characters, we were talking about the Japanese school year, and sari_15 brought up the fact that Kyo's disappearance to train in the mountains seems to have been after the school year would have begun. Yet Shigure says, "Last time he took the [high school entrance exam] he didn't attend the local boys' high school, even though he passed. Instead, he went missing for four months."
Now we know from ch. 119-120 that the reason he disappeared was because of Kyoko's death, which was on May 1st, but the Japanese school year begins in early April. (In the thread this came up in, I was saying that the Japanese school year begins on April 1st, but actually there is a bit of a spring break at that time, and according to one article I read, there is even some variation from region to region and school to school. So students would actually go back to school some time during the month of April, but probably not right on the 1st.)
So what gives? Why wouldn’t Kyo be in school for those couple of weeks? I don’t think he would’ve simply dropped out of school because 1) he typically tries to conform to social norms and something like 97% of Japanese people attend high school, and 2) he knew a pretty awful fate awaited him whenever he was finished with school (and before Kyoko’s death I don’t think he would have had the same fatalistic attitude about it that he seems to during the series). Does anyone have an idea of how to reconcile this?
Right now my favorite explanation is that Shigure didn’t really know what he was talking about (or maybe he was being a bit glib about it, or perhaps the line was actually mistranslated in TP’s version) and Kyo was in school those 2 or 3 weeks before Kyoko died. But...I don’t know. I’m open to other ideas.
The second issue I have is with the time of Kyoko’s death. At a couple of points in the series, Tohru seems to have flashbacks to an image of Kyoko with bandages all over her face, suggesting that she was brought to the hospital with injuries before she died. But in ch. 135, it seems clear that she died at the scene of the accident. There are only two possibilities I can think of for this one:
1) The flashbacks are to something other than Kyoko’s death. I know I don’t know all of Kyoko’s back story, because some of it comes from chapters I haven’t read many spoilers from, so maybe those images aren’t what they appear to be. This would be where you more-spoiled people come in to tell me whether I’m right or completely off the wall. ;)
2) Kyoko’s soul left her body to be with Katsuya right after Kyo ran away, as is portrayed in ch. 135, but that wasn’t necessarily obvious to the concerned bystanders, and she was not declared dead until after having received treatment, either from paramedics at the scene, or possibly even after being taken to a hospital and treated there.
It occurs to me that these two issues could almost be resolved together by the explanation that Kyoko was brain dead and kept “alive” for some time after the accident. Ugh. That’s really sad and horrible to think about. But if that’s what happened, I can’t imagine that it would be presented to the readers only as very brief images and never explained or at least implied somewhere in the narrative. *cues more-spoiled people to chime in once again*
ETA: There seems to be a bit of confusion about what I meant by that last bit. What I'm saying is, if Kyoko was in a coma for a few weeks after the accident, that could also explain the problem with Kyo's school attendance, because it would mean the accident could have happend in April before he went back to school, but that she officially "died" later--on May 1st like Tohru says--even though her soul actually left her body right after the accident.
Well, if anyone has any ideas on how to resolve these, please let me know. And let me know what you think about the timeline idea, especially if you’d be willing to help with it.
x-posted to RandomFandom.com