2/3 for this teaser, with one more in the works.
I will once again mention that my translations are by no means perfect, and there are bound to be mistakes.
Even so, please enjoy chapter 1!
Translator: Shiroikaze/Soyokaze Translations
Volume 1: Lizelotte and the Pleasant Mad Dogs
Chapter 1: I Have Come to Greet You, My Master (By GoldenRetriever)
My name is Lizelotte Mona Haidegger.1
I was born as the only daughter of the Haidegger house, and my mother died shortly after giving birth to me, but my father raised me with love enough for my mother’s share too.
My father is Kaine Haidegger of the lower aristocracy, and he made his name in society as a scholar.
Living in the lower aristocracy was a modest lifestyle, but we had a small mansion with a beautiful garden. My relaxing father, the nice servants, and my pet dog all lived there happily together.
I, who loved studying, was taught daily by my father, or an acquaintance of his. I tasted the joy of absorbing knowledge day after day.
I truly believe I was blessed to not have any true hardships.
However, one day my father remarried, and a dark cloud began to hang over our house.
The stepmother my father brought with him was similarly from the lower aristocracy, but there were endless rumors of her playing around with men.
Are you telling me the three older stepbrothers she brought with her are all from different fathers?!
And… Golly, I was told a little brother or sister was in her belly. I was truly surprised about this.
The fact that they married after causing a pregnancy was, as a girl of my age, not something I could very well accept.
Sure enough, they must have understood that I was taking distance from them.
My stepmother, keeping it hidden from my father, began doing unkind things to me.
Being severely scolded when my father was not around was a daily occurrence.
The servants who were kind to me were almost entirely replaced. I also went without food, and I faded into weakness.
My oldest two brother-in-laws only obeyed their mother, and didn’t help me.
But there was one person who did.
The youngest brother-in-law, who was close to me in age said, “ya poor girl, sufferin’ like this,” secretly sharing his meals with me. Avoiding his mother’s watchful eyes, he sometimes helped me.
He also fed my pet dog Bashiba;2 he was a kind brother-in-law.
Amidst those days, my father suddenly died due to an epidemic.
I was genuinely isolated.
After the funeral, my mother-in-law, having safely delivered an heir, declared this to me:
“Lizelotte, you are a child born of your mother’s infidelity. Kaine’s true child is right here. You are an unneeded child, so I am removing you from the family, and will place you in the custody of an institution.”
Being told that by my stepmother who repeatedly committed adultery, divorced, and remarried was a ‘ya’ll fer serious?’ (using my youngest stepbrother’s speech patterns) moment, but the reason for it is quite terrible:
————My face is so pretty that it’s strange.
That matter was something quite often joked about by my father and the servants.
My parents (mother I only know of through pictures) have, for better or for worse, common faces, with brown to light brown eyes. Yet my hair is silver, and my eyes violet.
Great grandfather had silver hair, so nothing was made of it, but as for the face…?
Well, I am certain she is simply thinking that others will do the same as she has done. Seeing as my brothers born of my blonde stepmother all grandly display differing hair colors from her partners.
According to what I hear, it would seem their faces also displayed strikingly different shapes from the men she was married to at the time.
Even so, it is true that I do not resemble my parents.
Can she drive out an aristocrat’s daughter based on a false charge like this, you ask? …She can. At least in aristocratic society. Unfortunately.
Besides, I am but a humble ten years old. I have no support on my mother’s side; she was a traveling dancer.
Moreover, it was a marriage after an unintended pregnancy. The more I think about it, the more I realize how suspicious my mother is.
Remembering my easygoing father who never worried about the finer details in the slightest, I could say nothing more.
And then, in the time while I was dumbfounded, the day I was deprived of my status and sent to an institution arrived.
In a good mood, my stepmother let a nanny hold my little brother, who had gotten quite big, and saw me off.
“Be sure not to cross our threshold again.”
I have a single bag and a dress. I was also entrusted with money, but this is for the institution as, “don’t send this child back our way again,” request money.
The single kindness was Bashiba. My pet dog was sent with me.
He wags his tail, delightedly thinking we are going on a trip.
We are not; this is exile.
As for his pedigree, he is of the highly loyal to their master, famous, and outstanding Shiba Inu breed.
Furthermore, he is supposed to be of the adorable toy dog type, but my father and I made mistakes disciplining him.
Right now with his cute round eyes, he can truly only think of himself. He is a Bad Shiba Inu: a Bad Shiba.3
Ah, he is getting his belly rubbed splendidly by the hired coachman, and going, “wafun,” delightedly.
That is strange. He was supposed to double as a guard dog though. He is quite the bad Shiba.
“Lize, try ta hang in ther. I’ll hurry an’ git powerful.”
Only the younger brother-in-law seemed worried about me as he saw me off.
My stepbrother, who faced hardship when he was entrusted to his father in the west, hugs me and whispers in my ear. He said, “So I’ll come pick ya up some day.”
Upon hearing those words, the tears I had been holding back finally welled up.
Perhaps because my stepmother and brother-in-laws harshly called out, ‘blank face,’ ‘dork,’ ‘sourpuss,’ and ‘go ahead and die,’ his kindness swept through my knotted up heart.
At the edge of my blurred vision, I could see my bad Shiba in a pose of submission while he received snacks from an old lady passing down the road.
Well then, this institution was originally made as a facility to accommodate orphans.
However, lately in this country, it has become a place for parents, who had children without considering the consequences and did not want to take responsibility, to abandon their little ones.
“It’s better than accidentally killing them,” is the excuse they give. But I think it would be best for the men who find contraception annoying, and the women who believe that if they just have a baby, then men will become some creature known as the ideal “father,” to reconsider their ideas.
Even so, I am probably still fortunate.
Because I have no expectations that my parents will repent of their actions and come pick me up some day.
In this country, half of the parents who abandon their children do not remove them from the family registry.
They would not find it amusing to have their property somehow taken by a person through adoption. If they are lucky and the children become normal working adults, then they might not be abandoned in their old age, and will have the children there to look after their needs.
Adults like that will, on rare occasion, come to visit their children.
Doing so, they simply pour affection on the children they consider property, then let the personnel of the institution deal with them afterward.
Initially I received harsh treatment for being a former aristocrat.
My speech is different from commoners, and not only did I bother them with the cost of my food, I also brought my pet dog along, so that is only natural. Though that very Bashiba does not realize this in the least.
That is the point at which the conversation turned to me sharing my meals with Bashiba.
However, half of my then extra large size meals end up getting swiped by the older boys, so I go hungry every day.
My stomach energetically grumbling in hunger is dreadfully difficult to ignore.
Oh my. The staff members are trying to teach him to sit and shake hands.
But Bashiba simply lifts one of his back legs off the ground, looking absentminded.
(Sigh. Please do not think that mongrel would be so well trained.)
The unmotivated Bashiba caught on to the scent of the biscuits the staff were hiding in their pockets, watched for his chance, and shoved his head in, making them angry. He somehow made me angry too.
I want to quickly become an adult. I want to learn a useful job. I want to let Bashiba eat more.
That is all which occupies my head.
Even so, amid those days of impatience, by taking an internal odd job at the institution, teaching children their letters, the meal portions were increased ever so slightly for me.
However, one day an incident occurred.
Since bandits appeared on the highway a week ago, food stocks depleted, and a sudden price hike began.
The orphanage is covered through donations. We no longer obtain leftover vegetables, and nobody has eaten a thing since yesterday.
My stomach shrank long ago, turning me to skin and bones, so I was not very perturbed by it, but that was not so for the growing boys.
That is when they thought of something dreadful.
“We’ve got emergency rations (the dog), don’t we?” they thought.
They planned to beat Bashiba to death in the dead of night. But, waking up and noticing beforehand, I remove the cord around Bashiba’s neck to let him escape.
And yet, the essential element of this, Bashiba, cannot comprehend what is happening.
Smelling the jerky that the boys sneakily brought along as a trap, he turned right around and came back to them!
I jumped out on reflex.
“What do you think you are doing to my dog?!”
“It’s the mongrel’s owner, Lize!”
“It’s a wild former aristocrat!”
I desperately cling to the legs of the boys who are trying to beat him with sticks.
The angered boys start beating me.
A rusty, acidic taste filled my mouth. It seems my nose bled too, but not very much.
“Do not lay a hand on my dog!”
That is the only thing in my head as the blood rushes to it.
Biting, scratching, hitting their jewels, their eyes. I used anything I could. Everything that my brother-in-law taught me was effective.
“She’s dangerous,” “She’s a mad dog,” “The adults are coming. Let’s get outta here,” they all shout, and finally withdraw.
I was raggedly breathing with my silver hair, and disheveled clothes.
There are bruises, cuts, and blood stuck to my face.
I declared victory in my mind, stood up, and turned around to my favorite dog who I protected.
He, seeing our fight, lost strength in his legs and had peed himself.
Just like that, I am a juvenile vagrant.
Even the head of the institution abandoned me, and I was sent away from the orphanage.
I suppose the path of dying a dog’s death lies ahead of me?
Me and Bashiba. A girl in pants, and a small toy dog.
At the very least, we should appear to be a cute combination, but I am aware that inside we are not so cute at all.
If I were pick up thrown away garbage in the area to eat right then, it would be like a scene from a novel I once read. But in countries with harsh food circumstances like this, they hardly have anything edible to throw away in the first place.
I called out to a flower seller on the street, thinking I might be able to mix in with a vagrant group, but their boss told me, “you’ll be better off selling a different flower,” and I escaped in haste.
That is the one thing I will actually die before doing. I absolutely do not want to go down that path!
Eventually I fled to a small mountain outside of the town.
If I remember correctly, some of the bandits have their base located on this mountain.
Bashiba whimpers in anxiety.
When I hug and comfort him, our surroundings grow dark, and I started hearing the howling of wild dogs and wolves in turn.
… We are in trouble. I am exhausted from lack of food, and my mind is getting hazy. If we should happen upon a bandit now…
“Well lookee here, we’ve got ourselves some scrawny prey.”
We happened upon a bandit.
Being unable to move and sitting down, the very picture of a bandit, a filthy middle-aged man with fur wrapped around his waist, approaches me with knife in hand.
“You really are skin and bones, but you’ve got a decent face. If we fatten you up, you could sell for a high price.”
When I look up absently, to my surprise, Bashiba was growling while standing in front of me!
He plants his four small limbs, and faces the bandit.
“Haah?! Friggin’ dog, you tryin’ to bark at me?!”
Bashiba’s courage ended with a single bark.
He quickly rolls his tail under himself and hides behind me.
Oh, now he is pushing his nose against my back. Yes, I know, you are telling me to do something about this, I see.
Bashiba is a bad Shiba who would absolutely be shaken by this, so I was actually quite relieved.
But life truly does bring surprises one after another.
Bashiba came to our house right when I started becoming aware of my surroundings, and then we grew up together.
What should have been an ordinary and quiet life as an aristocrat started with a puppy, and will end together with a puppy.
I made peace in my heart, and just as the bandit was about to lay his hands on me, that is when it happened.
“What the? Wild dogs?!”
Various dogs had encircled us.
Large breeds, medium breeds, small breeds. Dog breeds I had seen in the neighborhood, and ones I knew nothing about were there.
They generally threaten the bandit.
And then, several of the previously mentioned well-muscled medium size dogs bit down on the bandit’s legs.
“GYAAAAA!” the bandit screamed as he gets dragged into the bushes. It then soon turned quiet.
I am too scared to look in his direction.
And then the remaining dogs all turned their gazes on me at once.
In response to the abnormal atmosphere, Bashiba gave a screaming “WHINE!” and finally lost consciousness.
Oh, just a moment ago I said things will end together with a puppy, but allow me to revise that.
Things will end with me as bait for puppies.
My life is quite the joke. Truly getting done in by puppies; what in tarnation’s that ’bout.
Oh good grief, even my brother-in-law’s speech patterns are…!
“We have finally found you, master!”
The voice of people came from the collars of the dogs.
A collar splits, and from inside it appears a man who then comes over to me.
His face, rare in the country, is gorgeous.
Rich golden hair flows down his strong shoulders, as his kind and androgynous, light-brown colored face overflows with the same joy as a mother finding her child.
He who took the form of a high ranking aristocrat, bent a knee before me, who was sitting on the ground, then deeply and elegantly lowered his head.
“Lady Lizelotte, I am prime minister Leonhardt Von GoldenRetriever. I have been seeking milady for many years. Please, return with us to our country.”
Saying such, he softly takes hold of my skin and bones hand.
“Oh, what tragedy. To think milady was put through such hardship. What sins the late king has committed… But we shall not allow a fragment of this hardship to befall milady from here on. We ask you to bestow magnificent training upon us. My queen (my pleasure)”
“ “Our queen (my pleasure)!” ”4
The surrounding dogs had at some point vanished, and men in military uniforms encircled me.
With eyes of black and white upon me, the one calling himself Leonhardt lifts me into a princess carry.
“Come, let us set out for our country. The citizens will all be pleased.”
“Where might this country be?”
“It is a wonderful country, separated by the sea. The dog people and royalty (owners) happily await milady.”
As I was about to ask that question, Bashiba, still passed out below me, was picked up by an especially large soldier from the soldiers around me.
It looks like he is about to toss him away. This is terrible.
“What are you doing?! Do not be rough with Bashiba!”
“Why ever not? Lady Lizelotte, that is a simple mongrel who cannot protect you even with your life on the line, you know? He has no value as a dog. Let us be rid of him here.”
The surrounding soldiers also say, “death to the useless dog!” all together. They are amazingly spartan.
Sir Leonhardt smiled happily.
“If you should wish to grant it your kindness, then milady needs simply command, “die,” to it. As a dog, it will then gladly die in joy.”
‘I’m so jealous…’ said the the eyes of many soldiers as they turned their envious gazes towards the fainted Bashiba.
Why did it come to that I wonder?
I immediately refused.
“I will not. Bashiba is my family. Absolutely do not try to kill him or treat him violently.”
“My word. You would even call that mongrel family? Milady is so very…”
Sir Leonhardt gazed at me with bleary eyes.
Ummm. Could it be that he is misunderstanding something?
The surrounding soldiers also say, “such kindness,” “what a magnificent personage,” “I shall follow you my whole life,” with tears of gratitude streaming for some reason.
Eeeh. While at a loss for comments, eventually a large carriage came creak, creaking towards us.
…Hm? There are no horses.
For some reason, there appears to be a cylinder with a horn sticking out of it in front of the compartment.
One after another, similar strange square horseless carriages approached in succession.
Come to think of it, though I did say this is a small mountain, the horseless carriages climb it while knocking down the trees in their way.
That is some amazing horse power. Though there are no horses.
The square, horseless carriage stopped in front of my eyes, and the door opened on its own. Astonishing.
Sir Leonhardt boards the carriage together with me. The inside is spacious, gorgeous, and the large red seats on both sides appears to be soft and fluffy.
However, I did not experience that soft fluffiness.
The reason being because sir Leonhardt did not release me from the princess carry.
“Ummm. Could you please let me down now?”
“Might that be an order?”
“Then please allow me to continue for now. Aaah, lady Lizelotte rests in these arms. It’s a miracle. And what a magnificent fragrance as well…”
“I have not bathed, so that is a stink.”
“Aaah, the fragrant lady Lizelotte’s…”
“Not listening I see.”
I gave up.
I would have died a dog’s death if they had left me alone anyway. I decided to entrust myself to he who seems a bit perverted and incomprehensible.
He does not appear to wish me harm anyway (in fact, he seems affectionate towards me in a way), so I will not worry about the details, and indulge in the escapism inherited from my father. The food they gave me is good too.
And so I ended up going to the country of the strange puppy people.
- Haidegger: Like I mentioned previously, she gives a different family name than in the prologue. The Japanese for this one is ハイデガー (Haidegaa), which I found a reasonable equivalent to. Other suggestions are welcomed, in case I botched it. ↩
- Bashiba: in the raws it is ダシバ (Dashiba), but I have changed a letter for reasons I will explain in the next footnote. ↩
- Bad Shiba: Couple things here. First, the toy breed of a Shiba Inu is called a ‘mameshiba‘ in Japanese. When Lize refers to him as a Bad Shiba, she is actually making a pun on this, saying he is a ‘dameshiba.’ She is also subtly telling us the origin of his name: ‘Da[me]shiba’, which is why I changed his name to ‘Ba[d]shiba.’ If a future translator wants to change this, I’m willing to adjust my translations. This is simply how I decided to handle this joke. ↩
- My pleasure: this is a very direct translation of what they say. The raws: 女王様（マイ、プレジャー）. The “my pleasure” here is spoken in English. It sounds awkward, but I could not think of a good way to rework this. Suggestions welcome. ↩