Beautiful studies... beautiful cooking... beautiful legs... beautiful voice... beautiful art... which beautiful young man is your favorite?! A mysterious organization—unofficial, unpublicized, unpaid—rumored to settle the troubles of the Yubiwa Private Academy: the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club. Second year middle-school student Doujima Mayumi, looking for a star she saw only once ten years ago, opens the doors on the case with five beautiful young men! The latest series by Nishio Ishin is adapted in its entirety into a comic by Psychic Detective Yakumo's Oda Suzuka!
[A manga I've been gradually trying to read. I came for the 美脚 and stayed for the 美学.]
[This manga is available for online reading at pixiv; the first volume is free and only requires registering for an account. There is an existing scanned tranlsation by Unmei no Chance which is available on Mangarock, but 1) I'm trying to read without relying on other people's translations, and 2) I've seen a couple of places in their text that I'm pretty sure are mistranslations.]
[This is just my reading notes formatted vaguely prettily; my Japanese comprehension is pretty terrible as always, so don't expect too much.]
Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club
Original work: Nishio Ishin (西尾維新)
Manga: Oda Suzuka (小中すずか)
Original character design: Kinako (キナコ)
Table of contents:
FILE * The Secret Star that Shines for You Alone 1... 003
FILE * The Secret Star that Shines for You Alone 2... 065
FILE * The Secret Star that Shines for You Alone 3... 109
FILE * The Secret Star that Shines for You Alone 4... 141
|Mysterious young man:||~To chase a dream is beautiful.~
~However, to give up on a dream is still just as beautiful.~
|Mayumi:||I suppose, if that young man—that beautiful young man—says so...)
(...then this will be the story of how I, Doujima Mayumi, gave up my dream.)
Page 4-5 (Full-page image):
FILE * The Secret Star that Shines for You Alone 1
Page 6 (Full-page image, no text)
Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club
|Mayumi:||(The Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club...)
(Such a fishy name for an organization within the Yubiwa Private Academy campus where I attend middle school.)
(Whatever they do, they seem to do in secrecy...)
(Crossed-out sign: "Art Room")
(Flowery handwritten sign: "Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club Office")
(From what I hear, they settle all trouble within the school.)
(They're praised as an unofficial, unpublicized, unpaid autonomous organization.)
(It's said that they're actually the source of nearly all the trouble in the school.)
(What's more, the organization's activities—and even its membership—are murky.)
(They're really suspicious!!)
[The tag line for the group is hikoushiki, hikoukai, hieiri; "unofficial, exclusive, non-profit." I'm being a little bit loose with terms to make the alliteration work in English.]
|Mayumi:||(The office of the "Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club"...)
(Now what kind of trouble am I stepping into?)
Page 10-11 (Full-page image):
|Mayumi:||(...These guys are the members of that infamous Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club?)|
|Michiru:||"Huh? What's this, what's this?"
"Today brings us a woman who looks terribly gloomy, like ink."
"Look up the word 'regret' on a news site, and find out how often regretful feelings are expressed in today's world, over things like being alone... it's that sort of gloom."
|Mayumi:||(Who does he think he is? Such things...)
*Is this sarcasm?*
Second year, A-class—Fukuroi Michiru
"I don't care one bit about the student rankings!"
The most well-known of delinquents by far.
|Mayumi:||(Definitely not someone I should be getting involved with...)|
|Off-screen voice:||"Now, now, Michiru-kun... there's no call for such extreme rudeness on your first meeting with a lady."|
|Nagahiro:||"I express my feelings of regret against those such as you. That isn't something you've seen?"|
Student council president for 3 successive years
|Nagahiro:||"And so the world becomes yet more regretful."|
|Mayumi:||(Such a masterful speaker that it's said he won the election before a single vote was cast with his speech as freshman representative, immediately after enrolling. There are few who don't know this charming, beautiful voice that claims the hearts of audiences. Among girls, at least.)|
|Michiru:||"Ha! You're complaining about me while drinking the tea I brewed, you pedo!"|
|Nagahiro:||"Truly disgraceful. My fiancée was chosen by my parents."|
|Michiru:||"Whatever you say, Nagahiro. Hurry up and drink, before the tea I worked so hard on loses its taste."|
|Mayumi:||(What's with that look?! That's different from how he looked a minute ago...)
(How can the "ringleader" and "student council president," who are said to get along like dogs and monkeys, be in the same room? And calling each other "Michiru-kun" and "Nagahiro" like close friends besides? Ugh, I can't keep up with all this banter!)
|Nagahiro:||"Yes, yes. I understand, Michiru-kun."|
|Hyouta:||"It's true Nagahiro's a pedo. But...!"|
|Hyouta:||"Saying things like 'Gloomy like ink' [bokujuu-mitai ni kurasou] to this cutie... What is that about, Michiru-chan?"
"I thought you'd proposed 'Let's move in together!' [issho ni kurasou] on a chance meeting!"
First-year, A-class—Ashikaga Hyouta
|Mayumi:||(A track and field ace, even as a first-year student. And those beautiful legs... Bare legs...)|
|Mayumi:||(A face so perfect that it's said girls cuter than him don't exist in the school. Surely an angel. No...)
(It wouldn't be an exaggeration to call him an archangel, commanding a whole host of angels.)
|Hyouta:||"You're the second-year, Doujima-chan! Doujima Mayumi-chan! I'm Hyouta! I hope we can be friends! Look me up on LINE later!"|
|Mayumi:||"I can't, I don't have a smartphone..."
(I wonder how he knows my name?)
-*illegible annotation; something about "overly familiar"*-
[LINE is a popular chat service in Japan.]
|Mayumi:||"This bare legs thing is said to be the reason why all the girls in the school are wearing longer skirts and black stockings. Just like my black stockings..."|
(A student more famous than anyone here—the president, the ringleader, or the archangel...)
First year, A class—Yubiwa Sousaku
|Mayumi:||(The heir to the Yubiwa Foundation, the parent organization of the Yubiwa Academy. No way...)
(The actual chairman of the board!)
|Mayumi:||(D-did something annoy him? Why is the aloof, silent, "absolute zero" guy hanging out with these people?)
(But no... No question that this...)
|Mayumi:||(...must be the "Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club"!)
|Mysterious young man:||"Ha ha ha!"
"Well, let me welcome you once again, Doujima Mayumi-kun!"
|Mayumi:||(It's that guy...)|
|Michiru:||"Wait, so you're telling me this client was brought here personally by the leader?"|
|Nagahiro:||"So it seems. Shall we hear the leader's motion, then?"|
|Mayumi:||(So what's he hiding? This person...)
(The mastermind who brought me to this art room...)
|Mysterious young man:||"I... am the beautiful leader of the 'Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club'—"|
|Mysterious young man:||"Soutouin Manabu!"|
|Mayumi:||(Ringleader, president, archangel, chairman... all loyal to this "leader." He's a beautiful young man from this school who was completely unknown to me.)|
[The Japanese words are banchou, seito kaichou, tenshi chou, and rijichou, and this flows really well in Japanese because of the repetition of the character 長 chou, meaning "leader." It stresses the idea that these people are all leaders in the school in some way, and they all look up to this person as the leader (danchou) of their group.]
|Mayumi:||~It all began a few hours ago...~
(Will these be the last stars I see from this school's rooftop?)
|Mayumi:||(Tomorrow, October 10th, I'll have my 14th birthday, which is also scheduled to mark the end of this nightly routine.)
("Have your fun, until your second year in middle school"...)
(That was my agreement with my parents. I somehow got away with broadly interpreting it to mean until I turn 14, but... it was wasted effort.)
(What might I have done, if I hadn't followed a dream for these ten years? Sigh...)
|Manabu:||"Looking for something?"|
|Mayumi:||(This... is... bad...)
(Is tonight my final night? No, wait, it can't be...)
(Something like "Dream broken, youthful fortunes end in suicide" would be super-uncool!)
|Mayumi:||(Oh... it's beautiful... This isn't bad, for the view I see as my life ends.)
Page 32-33 (Full-page image, no text)
|Manabu:||"Are you all right? Please, be careful! The rooftop is off-limits because it's dangerous."|
|Mayumi:||"T.. t... tha... thank... Thank you!!"
(I guess he surprised me...)
"So... you like looking at the stars, huh?"
|Mayumi:||"Eh? How do you know that?"|
|Manabu:||"How? An exceedingly simple elementary deduction! I can't think of any other reason to visit rooftops at a time like this."|
|Manabu:||"I, too, understand your feeling of being captivated by the beautifully shining stars quite well. I also like the stars. The beautifully shining stars illuminate me beautifully as well!"|
|Mayumi:||(Seriously? What's he babbling... Hm? Didn't he just say something strange?)|
|Manabu:||"Looking for something? If that's the case, I won't hesitate to help you."|
|Mayumi:||"...Why do you think I was looking for something?"|
|Manabu:||"How? Again, an elementary deduction! Unless you were looking for something single-mindedly, you wouldn't have failed to notice my beautiful self."|
|Mayumi:||(He said that! He totally said that! 'My beautiful self'... This guy's up to no good! I should get out of here quick!)|
|Manabu:||"Hmm? I was being unobservant!"|
|Manabu:||"I was only impressed by the back of your long hair before, but now I can see it!"
"You have very beautiful eyes!"
|Mayumi:||(The word I want to be said the least...)|
|Manabu:||"Huh? Why do you want to conceal those beautiful eyes with glasses? Even though they're so beautiful? If you say that I'm dazzling, I'll try to hold back my aura as much as I can. So whatever it takes, please remove those glasses for me."|
|Manabu:||Beauty is not a thing that you compete over, if that's what you're worried about. While I may indeed rival you, that doesn't lessen the beauty of your eyes."|
|Mayumi:||(This guy... does he want to get punched?)
"You're right! I am looking for something. Will you kindly assist me, please?"
(I don't think I really wanted even one bit of help... just to give this weirdo some trouble. I'll finish up the night, and this mysterious young man.)
(Maybe he's meant to get involved in my dream...?)
|Manabu:||"No doubt about it! Please come and join me... at the office of the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club!"|
|Mayumi:||"...is what he said. And that's how I got myself involved with the rumored Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club."|
|Manabu:||"So shall we hear the details, Doujima Mayumi-kun? What in the world were you looking for?"|
(...I said "help" so lightly...)
(But such dangerous people... it's a different story!)
(I'll just nip this deception in the...)
|Mayumi:||(The moment it touched my tongue, I spat it out by reflex. As if I was being made to drink poison... Such tea, for the first time in my life... it's way too delicious!!)|
|Michiru:||"Hey, what's the matter? Was it that different from the muddy water you always drink?"|
|Mayumi:||(If this is black tea, then what I usually drink really is brown mud.)
*I made the ringleader wipe it up...*
|Manabu:||"But look, everyone! Don't you think her eyes are quite beautiful? It's like a window opens when you gaze into them!"|
|Manabu:||"Ha ha ha! We're making her face turn red with embarassment. Well, a modest disposition is beautiful too!"|
|Mayumi:||(This blush isn't embarassment... it's actually anger.)
|Mayumi:||"I hate this 'beauty' thing!!"
"Just because you're all a bit cool doesn't mean you can just say anything you want willy-nilly about people!"
(I've done it now...)
|Mayumi:||(So this probably going to end with me getting gleefully kicked out of the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club office... I mean, this art room.)|
~Various laughter from everyone~
|Nagahiro:||"No discourtesy is intended; I didn't intend to laugh. This is the way it usually goes."|
[I can imagine the grammar in Nagahiro's last sentence there working out to something like "It goes this way, as usual" or "We always go too far." They both make sense in context, but the former seems to flow into the next conversation a bit better.]
|Michiru:||"Funny thing is, every client who comes in here, man or woman, says pretty much the same thing, about how things like beauty are sooo worthless."|
|Hyouta:||"Yup yup! But in the end, they'll leave appreciating the value of beauty."|
|Manabu:||"Doujima Mayumi-kun, just to be clear, I'd like to submit one clarification. The word 'beauty' is a proud duty that we accept willingly. However, I would like you to withdraw the word 'cool.' After all, does it seem like we're at all attached to our image?"|
|Mayumi:||"There's a difference between 'beautiful' and 'cool'?"
*thought they were the same...*
[Had some trouble untangling Manabu's last bubble about coolness (kakkou). I'm pretty sure it's some sort of rhetorical question like "Do we really seem cool to you?", but I'm not all that confident how the grammar actually works out.]
|Manabu:||"Rule number 1 of the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club!"
|Mayumi:||('Number 1'? So there's also a 2, 3, and...?)
(Well, it's interesting so far... it's become interesting.)
(A beauty-hater like me... Will I really leave appreciating the 'value of beauty' somehow?)
"Okay, why not give it a try? Let me present my request!"
|Manabu:||"All right. So what is it you're looking for?"|
|Mayumi:||"I... I'm looking for a star."|
|Mayumi:||"That star I saw ten years ago..."|
|Mayumi:||"When I was around three or four, I went on a family vacation with my parents and older brother."
"We swam in the sea... we barbecued on the beach... we enjoyed fireworks... a happy trip, just like a painting."
"But what touched my heart the most was the starry sky I looked up at throughout the trip."
|Mayumi:||"And, the most beautiful among them, a brightly shining star I was fascinated with. Intensely beautiful... and so close I felt I could extend my hand and reach it."
"I thought only about wanting to go to that star one day. And from then on, my dream for the future became 'astronaut.'"
|Mayumi:||"But... the star I supposedly saw from the coast that day... that star that touched my heart and should have decided my future... I completely lost sight of it."
”Since I returned from that trip until today, no matter how I searched the night sky, I haven't been able to find that star."
"At first, everyone unaninously gave me words of comfort."
”But when I was permanently attached to the idea, comfort turned into reprimands for my stubborn lack of understanding."
”I've been isolated for I don't know how long, constantly alone, seeking that lost star, and putting my energy into self-education in astronomy."
|Mayumi's parents:||"Stop looking irresponsibly at dreams, and think seriously about your future."
"Have your fun, until your second year in middle school. If you haven't been able to find that so-called star by your second year of middle school, you'll completely give up your astronaut dream."
|Mayumi:||"But this routine of mine will end very soon. On October 10th, I'll have my 14th birthday, and my 'star search' will end."
"No... it didn't really even begin."
"Because... there was never any such star to start with."
"Beautiful!! A search for a lost glittering star! Surely a suitably magnificent case for the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club to set out on, isn't it?"
|Michiru:||"Magnificent... Certainly magnificent. It's quite a request so far. Wow, it's going to be a big job, huh?"|
|Mayumi:||"Huh... You're saying... You're accepting my request?"|
|Hyouta:||"Haha! Great, huh? The leader said he's taking it on. Lots of things get turned down at this point... 'That request's not beautiful' or some such!"|
|Mayumi:||(I wish he wouldn't clean up my request with a word like "beautiful," though...)
"You're saying you'll take such a childish request? You'll search with me for a star that may or may not exist?"
|Manabu:||"Childish requests are better! No, if anything, they must be childish."|
|Manabu:||"Rule number 2 of the Beautiful Young Men's Detective Club!"
"'Be a young man'!"
|Mayumi:||"Be a... young man...?"|
|Hyouta:||"Yup yup! We don't forget our childish hearts, no matter what! So, I wear shorts my whole life!"
"Being 'Nice Legs Hyouta' is my thing."
|Mayumi:||(How is that a nickname?)
*although he does have ridiculously nice legs...*
"And so you're sitting upside-down to intentionally make your legs seem emphasized?"
|Michiru:||"The height of his eyes and the height of the skirt opening of a girl sitting exactly where you are line up perfectly. So being upside-down... not what you think!"|
(He should have told me sooner!)
|Hyouta:||"But these days, all girls have longer skirts, so it doesn't really work out."|
|Mayumi:||(But that's mainly due to your 'Nice Legs'...)|
|Manabu:||"He just went to make arrangements. No need to worry."|
|Manabu:||"Well, let's all head to the rooftop!"|
Page 62-63 (full-page image):
|Manabu:||"Seems to be settled! To the star search!"|