After Dark /アフターダーク

I wanted to share with you the passages which I liked best , the things that created some feelings in me . There will be spoilers so If you want to read the book , don’t go further in this post.

11:56 p.m.

Mari glances at the instrument case. “That a
trombone?”
“That’s right! How’d you know?”
“Hell, I know what a trombone looks like.”
“Well, sure, but there are tons of girls who don’t even
know the instrument exists. Can’t blame ’em, though. Mick
Jagger and Eric Clapton didn’t become rock stars playing
the trombone. Ever see Jimi Hendrix or Pete Townshend
smash a trombone on stage? Of course not. The only thing
they smash is electric guitars. If they smashed a trombone,
the audience’d laugh.”


“My sister wouldn’t know the difference between a
trombone and a toaster. She could tell the difference
between a Gucci and a Prada at a glance, though, I’m
pretty sure.”
“Everybody’s got their own battlefields,” he says with a
smile.


12:00 a.m.
Something is about to happen in this room. Something
of great significance.


12:37 a.m.
His face covered by this precisioncrafted, anonymous mask, the
man sits quietly in the chair being captured by the television
camera, and this gives rise to a situation. All we can do, it
seems, is defer judgement and accept the situation as it is.
We shall call him the Man with No Face.


1:18 a.m.
Mari says, “You know, I’ve been wanting to ask you.
Why do you call your hotel Alphaville?”
“Hmm, I wonder. The boss probably named it. All love
hos have these crazy names. I mean, they’re just for men
and women to come and do their stuff. All you need is a
bed and a bathtub. Nobody gives a damn about the name
as long as it sounds like a love ho. Why do you ask?”
“Alphaville is the title of one of my favourite movies.
Jean-Luc Godard.”
“Never heard of it.”
“Yeah, it’s really old. From the sixties.”
“That’s maybe where they got it. I’ll ask the boss next
time I see him. What does it mean, though— ‘Alphaville’?”
“It’s the name of an imaginary city of the near future,”
Mari says. “Somewhere in the Milky Way.”
“Oh, science fiction. Like Star Wars?”
“No, it’s not at all like Star Wars. No special effects, no
action. It’s more conceptual. Black-and-white, lots of
dialogue, they show it in art theatres…”
“Whaddya mean, ‘conceptual’?”
“Well, for example, if you cry in Alphaville, they arrest
you and execute you in public.”
“Why?”
” ‘Cause in Alphaville, you’re not allowed to have deep
feelings. So there’s nothing like love. No
contradictions, no irony. They do everything according to
numerical formulas.”
Kaoru wrinkles her brow. ” ‘Irony’?”
“Irony means taking an objective or inverted view of
oneself or of someone belonging to oneself and
discovering oddness in that.”
Kaoru thinks for a moment about Mari’s explanation. “I
don’t really get it,” she says. “But tell me: is there sex in this
Alphaville place?”
“Yes, there is sex in Alphaville.”
“Sex that doesn’t need love or irony.”
“Right.”
Kaoru gives a hearty laugh. “So, come to think of it,
Alphaville may be the perfect name for a love ho.”


2:19 a.m.
Kaoru and Komugi silently watch the motorcycle go,
standing in the street long after it has disappeared.
When she speaks finally, Komugi says, “I don’t know,
he’s kind of like a ghost.”
“Well, it is the right time of day for ghosts, you know,”
Kaoru says.
“Scary.”
“Yeah, really.”


2:43 a.m.
“I’ll probably be asleep by then. I’ve gotta get up at six
and make the kids’ lunches.”
“And when you get up, I’ll be sound asleep.”
“And when you get up, I’ll be eating lunch at the office.”
“And when you get home, I’ll be settling down to do
serious work.”
“Here we go again: never meeting.”


3:07 a.m.
Are you planning to be a professional musician?”
He shakes his head. “I’m not that talented. I love to
play, but I could never make a living at it. There’s a big
difference between playing well and playing really
creatively. I think I’m pretty good on my instrument. People
say they like my playing, and I enjoy hearing that, but that’s
as far as it goes. I’m gonna quit the band at the end of the
month and basically cut my ties with music.”
“What do you mean, ‘playing really creatively’? Can
you give me a concrete example?”
“Hmm, let’s see… You send the music deep enough
into your heart so that it makes your body undergo a kind of
a physical shift, and simultaneously the listener’s body also
undergoes the same kind of physical shift. It’s giving birth to
that kind of shared state. Probably.”
“Sounds hard.”


3:25 a.m.
It’s not that difficult once we make up our mind. All we
have to do is separate from the flesh, leave all substance
behind, and allow ourselves to become a conceptual point
of view devoid of mass. With that accomplished, we can
pass through any wall, leap over any abyss. Which is
exactly what we do. We let ourselves become a pure single
point and pass through the TV screen separating the two
worlds, moving from this side to the other. When we pass
through the wall and leap the abyss, the world undergoes a
great deformation, splits and crumbles, and is momentarily
gone. Everything turns into fine, pure dust that scatters in all
directions. And then the world is reconstructed. A new
substance surrounds us. And all of this takes but the blink of
an eye.

The next thing we know, we are back in Eri Asai’s
room. The bed is empty. We can see the TV screen. It
shows nothing but a sandstorm of interference. Harsh static
grates on our ears. We stare at the sandstorm for a while to
no purpose.
The room grows darker by degrees until, in an instant,
all light is lost. The sandstorm also fades. Total darkness
arrives.


4:09 a.m.
Takahashi smiles and looks at Mari. “Well, finally, once
you become an orphan, you’re an orphan till the day you
die. I keep having the same dream. I’m seven years old and
an orphan again. All alone, with no adults around to take
care of me. It’s evening, and the light is fading, and night is
pressing in. It’s always the same. In the dream I always go
back to being seven years old. Software like that you can’t
exchange once it’s contaminated.”


4:33 a.m.
“Just about two months ago, she said, ‘I’m going to go
to sleep for a while.’ She made this announcement to the
family at dinnertime. Nobody thought much about it. It was
only seven p.m., but my sister always had irregular sleep
habits, so it was nothing to be too shocked about. We said
goodnight to her. She had hardly touched her food, but she
went to her room and got into bed. She’s been sleeping
ever since.”
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5:09 a.m.
Free of all confusion, Eri now sleeps decorously in her
bed. Her black hair fans out on her pillow in elegant,
wordless significance. We can sense the approach of
dawn. The deepest darkness of the night has now passed.
But is this actually true?


5:10 a.m.
“You’ll never get away,” a man’s voice says instantly.
“You will never get away. No matter how far you run, we’re
going to get you.”
“We’re going to tap you on the shoulder some day. We
know what you look like.”
“If somebody taps you on the shoulder somewhere
some day, it’s us,” the man says.
“You might forget what you did, but we will never
forget.”
“You’ll never get away.”


5:24 a.m.
The new day is almost here, but the old one is still
dragging its heavy skirts. Just as ocean water and river water struggle against each other at a river mouth, the old
time and the new time clash and blend. Takahashi is
unable to tell for sure which side—which world— contains
his centre of gravity.
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