|Author: Carrot Sauce||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 1618 characters|
|Translator: Silva||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1086 words|
“What? You want to study painting under me?” The elder got down from the stool and ran around Lily to examine her. It made Lily feel rather uncomfortable to have a short, hunchbacked old man revolving around her.
Nanako supplemented, “That’s right, grandpa Hishikawa. But you shouldn’t look down on this big-breasted woman you know? She is but a powerful samurai!”
“Samurai?” Hishikawa Moronobu sized up Lily and said somewhat displeased, “What is a woman trying to learn both swordsmanship and art for? Hmph!”
Moronobu shook his head and walked over to the tea house, completely disregarding the girl lying on the box. Lily and Nanako also helplessly followed after him. Before leaving, however, Lily gave an apologetic glance to the young girl since there was nothing she could do to help her. Besides, that young girl also didn’t want others to look at her anyway. It was already embarrassing enough to have outsiders look at her like this.
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The three arrived at the tea house. When the apprentice poured tea for them, he couldn’t resist taking a few extra glances at Lily.
“Why are you still here?!” He was eventually berated by Moronobu.
The two girls felt a little ill at ease, it seemed like it wouldn’t be easy to make a deal with this elder.
Anyway, I just have to express my sincerity! Lily decided.
She solemnly took a deep bow before the elder, “Master, Lily wanted to learn painting because I wish to grasp the sword script through the understanding of Drawing Concept. I beseech the master to teach me.”
Moronobu squinted his eyes to observe Lily, then he asked, “Why does a frail-looking girl like you want to become a samurai?”
“In this dark, disorderly world, there is a promise Lily must fulfill at all costs.”
Before Moronobu was a stunning beauty, he originally thought she was nothing but a feast for the eyes, but he never expected her tone to contain some sort of obsession that even he couldn’t see through.
“……if you want me to teach you, that’s not necessarily out of the question. However, I must remind you in advance; although I can teach you my painting, a woman will never be able to learn it. Even if you are gifted and tactful, the most you can learn from me is my skills. You will never be able to learn true art!” Moronobu said in all seriousness.
“Huh? But why?” Lily was puzzled.
“Because you are a woman.”
“……” Nanako was the first to voice her doubt, “Grandpa Hishikawa, please don’t speak in such an indirect manner. Nanako doesn’t understand, why is it that a woman cannot learn it?”
Lily didn’t say anything else since she also harbored the same doubt within.
Moronobu sipped the tea and said with a sigh, “Miss Kagami, is it? I bet your goal is to learn the Drawing Concept and then implement it in the sword inscriptions to grant it Spirit Power right?”
Upon hearing his words, Lily’s eyes lit up. While he might be an artist, he was well studied in the sword inscriptions and sword script. He truly lived up to his reputation.
“Yes— that’s why I wish to learn from the master!”
“Your way of thinking, I can understand. Your strong attachment towards the path of samurai, I can also feel it a little. However, my Drawing Concept is not something you can come to realize by merely drawing on a piece of paper. That’s just an application technique. To truly learn my Drawing Concept, however…”
Moronobu looked at the two girls with a fiery gaze and said, “you must paint on the back of a beautiful young girl like what you’ve witnessed earlier! Only then will you be able to understand true art!”
“What?!?!” Both Lily and Nanako became flushed from hearing that.
“That’s why, Miss Kagami, you understand now right? You are a girl, so even if you can find another woman who would be delighted to let you bind them up and paint on their back, how can you understand the feeling of a man who was allowed to paint on the back of a girl who willingly devoted herself to you despite her shame and inexperience?!
If you can’t understand that feeling, then how will you be able to understand the Drawing Concept?
Miss Kagami, if you want to learn the Drawing Concept, I suggest you visit Grandmaster Fujiwara in Heian-kyo. She is a woman as well so she can impart a concept suitable for females. My ukiyo-e, on the other hand, is not suitable for you.1
And moreover, I am not too knowledgeable in the sword script. Even if we suppose Miss Kagami is a man, to master the sword script via a comprehensive study of my Drawing Concept, I doubt drawing on the back of an ordinary girl would work. At the very least, they need to be deeply involved with the swords. Blah, just forget about it, there’s no point to say that much anyway. You are a woman, it’s impossible for you to understand my Drawing Concept anywho. So, after I’ve said that much, you understand now right?”
The two girls were staring blankly at the artist, trying to digest his every single words.
“Lily has understood the master’s warning,” bowing down again, Lily continued, “However, Lily still wants to learn from the master. Although Lily is untalented, I will never disgrace the master’s Drawing Concept.”
Her tone was calm and docile, yet it flowed smoothly like the running water. For a moment, even Moronobu was somewhat moved.
“You, really want to learn from me?”
“Alright then, for the sake of the Saikanji house, I can teach you. However, you have to pay 200 kwan in advance. This is a deposit, but it will serve as a lesson for your stubbornness when you realize that women cannot understand this old man’s Drawing Concept! Think carefully before you decide, will you take the chance?” Moronobu asked seriously.
“Master Moronobu, I am willing to become your disciple,” Lily answered without the slightest hesitation.
“Wait, I can teach you, but don’t you dare to refer yourself as my disciple. Won’t I become a laughing stock if people find out I took in a big titted girl as my disciple?!”
Nanako doubtfully looked at Lily. Though a few hundred kwan meant nothing to her, but how could a woman understand the master’s Drawing Concept? She was worried that Lily would have wasted her money for nothing.
- Silva: On the contrary, since she has a male soul, this might actually be more compatible with her than the female’s way.