After 11 weeks of typing, research and planning, the first installment of the Kuroko no Obake series is complete!
What is this series about:
Kuroko no Obake is a historical series that centers around the themes of youkai. That means that some of the characters will be youkai. Each individual book (aka one-shot) focuses on one character, which is reflected in the title (The Story of "xx"). 'Obake' means 'monster' in Japanese.
The first book is set in the year 1869, during the beginning of the Meiji Restoration.
All the books are linked together, so missing details in one book will be filled in another. An example would be the issue of Akashi's disappearance and his parent's murder. Note that the books are not written in chronological order, so I'll fill in the background details in the front.
Also, tragedy is a theme that befalls the first five books. Midorima's story will probably be the most heart-warming of the lot.
Frequency of stories:
Each book will take about eight to twelve weeks to write, depending on whether I have any other series(s) to manage, aka. Parallel. Also, it depends on how much research I have to do to get the facts right.
So far, in order of writing and publishing, I have planned for: Akashi (the next one), Kuroko (something akin to his backstory), Himuro, Kagami, Midorima, Kasamatsu. After that, I'm still considering the Seirin people and the Crownless Generals. If it's not popular, I will probably stop at Kasamatsu.
I'm trying to finish book two by early October, if possible. I will take my own sweet time to do it, so I can maintain the quality.
By far, I have gone through two Japanese history textbooks (thank the National Library), Ise Monogatari (also from the National library), the Attack series by Hiroko Yoda and Matt Alt (I am using all 3 books for every single thing I write for this series) and a number of pages on the internet. I usually find books for the more accurate facts, but everything else is from the web.
In this story, Midorima's poem was by Naito Joso and Akashi's poems are from Ise Monogatari. I forgotten which dan they are from.
Notes for Book One:
I took a total of 79 days (June 20 to August 31st) for typing and researching so as to complete this book and also the details for the other books.
The kanji change for Setsugetsuka (雪月花 to 刹月花) was intentional. The kanji '刹' in Chinese means 'kill'.
Different speech patterns (e.g. I will instead of I'll in dialogue) to indicate traditional formal and informal speech.
I apologize to the unintentional reference to Orihara Izaya of DuRaRaRA!.
Kuroko's use of "Danna-sama": The word traditionally means 'Master', but it can be also used to address one's husband. It was an intentional hint that Akashi's and Kuroko's relationship may be something of a rather intimate nature.
I told you that there was on gender-bending. Only cross-dressing.
Kuroko's acting is top class. So is Akashi's. Aomine was completely fooled.
The part with Aomine under the influence of the aphrodisiac was the hardest to write. I actually wrote the last part first. (From the stabbing to the)
YES, LONG HAIRPINS ARE LEGAL WEAPONS, especially if they are made from metal. According to Yoda & Alt's Ninja Attack, it was a choice weapon for kunoichi of the past.
The Youkai of this story: Kuroko is a snake youkai. You will learn more about his abilities in the next book. Mibuchi, Hayama and Nebuya are all youkai as well. I planned for Mibuchi to be a tsukumo-no-gami (of a kimono) and Hayama a nekomata, but I'm thinking about Nebuya. Maybe a Nobiagari. Oh, and Himuro himself is a youkai as well. Akashi is the only human in his household. That's all I can reveal for now.
Kuroko as a snake youkai: As mentioned, his eyes are different and there are the scales on his chest. That his 'youkai form'. The snake is his 'animal form'. And I think you know the 'human form'. His scales has special properties, which will be revealed in book two. Actually, a lot about Akashi and Kuroko will be revealed in book two, since I plotted it as a supplementary for and back-story to book one.
Language of Flowers Glossary
Snapdragons- A graceful lady, deception
Hydrangeas- Pride (Hanakotoba version)
Glossary of Japanese words (let me know if I missed any):
Hatamoto: Direct retainers under the Tokugawa Shogunate
Bakufu/Bakmatsu: Check wikipedia. This one's a pain to explain if you don't know what it is. (Those who know Hakuouki, Kaze Hikaru etc. or perhaps Gintama would have a rough idea what it is)
Shamisen: A traditional Japanese instrument
Sake: Japanese Rice Wine
Rounin: A samurai who does not serve a lord or have a master
Haori: Something like a kimono jacket
Katana: A Japanese Sword
Genkan: The entrance to any Japanese house. (I'm not sure if they had these historically, but I shall assume they do)
Dango: Grilled dumplings made from glutinuous rice powder.
Noren: Japanese door curtains
Tsuji-giri: Crossroads Killing. Can be used as a noun and a verb. Check wikipedia for details.
Fudai-Daimyo: Check wikipedia. I already returned the book I got this from.
Tabi: Japanese Two-toed socks
Yozakura: Sakura at night
I hope you'll enjoy the rest that is to come!
Reviews and suggestions are greatly appreciated!
Oh, and happy birthday, Aho-mine. I'm sorry I had to publish this on your special day. (It's already one in the morning here)
Dreams of the Future
Next book: The Story of Red
Kakubou: A Contract with the darkness (噩夢 ~黒と誓い~)