[English translation] Dies irae – Opening speech

dies irae title2

I’ve never actually read this VN. I plan to in the future, as I’ve heard pretty good things about it, but at the moment I’m occupied with other stuff so it’ll have to wait a bit. Despite all that, the opening lines were so powerful, so brilliantly delivered, and had such an impact on me (who doesn’t even know anything about the game, I might add), that I felt compelled to do a quick translation of my own.

Continue to the Prologue

What if I told you that one’s entire life had been decided by fate?

That every single one of your actions, from the minute to the monumental, stems not from your own choices, but had already been decided upon?

That life being a journey of limitless possibilities is but an illusion, and no matter how fiercely man struggles, he stands at the mercy of a long-established path?

The wealthy shall know their riches,
The needy shall starve on the streets,
The wicked shall be wicked, the righteous just.

The beautiful, the hideous,
The strong, the frail,
The fortunate and the miserable…

And…

The victors and the defeated.

What if I told you that all such things had been carved into stone eons before, not allowing for any divergence?

If so, then sinners have nothing to answer for, and saints have no true virtue to their name.

What if I told you that not a single action is carried out of one’s own volition, but had been decided long ago?

That we are merely being drifted along in the ocean of time?

I ask of you – do you feel content with such a world?

A world in which power is merely given, not earned – would you willingly bend the knee to a throne built upon such falsities?

A universe where the sinless have-nots are opressed and downtrodden – would you allow such a world to exist?

Never, I say. Never!

Those who, in possession of such knowledge, can still laugh joyfully, oblivious of what it means to be truly alive are but slaves, the lowest of the low, hardly deserving to be called human beings.

Nothing dampens the spirit like the stale wine of an unearned victory.

Nothing is more unbearable than bitter defeat against the chains of destiny.

Should ceaslessly repeating this farce, this slander of the highest order be the fate of mankind… very well, if such is the case, I, shall struggle against those chains with all my might.

I shall walk this road to its utmost conclusion, and, at the distant place I can call my finale, compose an opera that sings only my name.

And so, I require your aid, my dear ladies and gentlemen. You, the opressed, the downtrodden, the massacred – you who once were as brethren. You were born to be defeated, to be massacred till the end of times. Should you curse that fate of yours – then come and stand at my side as comrades.

If a hundred battles yield no victory, you should fight a thousand.

If a thousand battles yield no victory, you should fight ten thousand.

Vow to struggle for an eternity, ceaslessly, till the light of victory finally shines upon you.

Any that has the strength to do this, shall be permitted to become a means to that end, a member of this “Arte”.

All in order to claim eternal victory.

The mane of the beast, each and every strand of it, shall be from your flesh and blood. You have my blessing.

Although we, as well as “he”, at this very moment, might still be bound by that miserable shackle…

Let us believe that the decision we are about to make truly holds a meaning…

That one day, we can break free from this endlessly repeating cycle.

My dear ladies and gentlemen. Defeated souls of the present age. I await your answer:

Will you rise to battle?

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3 thoughts on “[English translation] Dies irae – Opening speech

  1. Thanks for the translation! The speech brings up an interesting debate about whether we have free choice or not and it’s a debate I really like. I kinda wonder how far they’d go with it.
    Dies Irae is one I’ve been looking up, too, because of its theme song (I like the one for Acta Est Fabula best and yes, I look up a lot of visual novels just based on their theme songs) and I’m a sucker for chuunige. Have fun reading and good luck!

  2. Thank you so much for this translation. I am slowly learning Japanese with the long term goal of trying to understand more of this. I strongly recommend this novel even if it did have a bit of a checkered history.

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