Here is Takajo Aki’s confession, with English subtitles, from the video games AKB 1/149 Renai Sousenkyo Love Election.
There’s a lot going on with this dialogue, so I’ll go there line-by-line and try to explain what’s happening! I’ll include hiragana and romaji after each line as well.
結構やるね → けっこうやるね（kekko yaru ne)
This is a set phrase which means something akin to: “You’re get at this!” Context is important here, as it could mean other things depending on the situation. In this case, we’re playing tennis with Akicha, so she is probably commenting on your tennis abilities
Nothing unusual here. let’s move on to the next line!
決める → きめる（kimeru) → to decide. What are we deciding here?! It’s hard to figure out until she uses the next phrase ２番目 (ni ban me), which means second place (in a ranking, for instance). In this context of relationships, it has the meaning of being a “fallback” – that is, if it doesn’t work out with the person of your choice (i.e. the “first place” person), you can fallback to the 2nd place person.
This particular phrase is pretty difficult to explain, so it might make better sense to dissect each individual phrase:
- その代わり → （そのかわり, sono kawari）in exchange for. In the previous sentence she said she was okay with being a fallback. In this context, we use その代わり to mean something like an exchange for giving you that favor. Because we’re talking about a hypothetical situation which hasn’t happened yet, this sets a “condition” for a favor. Kinda like saying in English, “on one condition!”
- その人のことさえ → （そのひとのことさえ、sono hito no koto sae) → at minimum, or as much as, that person. The key part here is the use of さえ, which just means something like expressing a minimum requirement.
- 吹き飛ぶような最高の恋 → ふきとぶような, fukitobu you na saiko no koi → love that is something like being blown away. This is a really compacted phrase. Basically, fukitobu means to “blow away”. The second part, “you na”, means “something like”. The next part, “saiko no koi” literally means, “best love” or “greatest” love.
- 私としよう → わたしとしよう, watashi to shiyo → do together with me.
So, take all the pieces: “on one condition”, “at minimum like that person”, “love that is something like being blown away”, “do together with me”, and this yields an English equivalent along the lines of, “My one condition is: I want you to be in love with me, at least as much as that other person”. Probably even more so 🙂 Or something like that.
She uses the phrase, 物の例え（もののたとえ, mono no tatoe), which literally meanings, “an example” of some sort. She talking about what she said before about being a falling as just “example” talk, or just a hypothetical situation.
Nothing much going on here. 受け取る（うけよる, uke toru), literally means, “to accept”. In this case, you’ve just accepted her as your girlfriend 🙂
The very last phrase is kinda interesting, she literally just says one word, 悔しい（くやしい, kuyashii). The literal meaning is frustration, but note how she just says the one word without any subject or particles. This is a common pattern in Japanese, so translating into English is a little sloppy. It sounds funny just to say, “Frustration.”, doesn’t it? So, a good English equivalent phrase might be something like, “How frustrating…”, or, “I’m so frustrated.”
Anyway, there was unexpected a LOT of lines in Takajo’s confession. Here’s the complete transcript, with English inline:
You’re pretty good.
There’s something my high school tennis teacher used to say lot.
“Rather than becoming first place, become first class”.
If there’s someone you’ve decided to be with, I don’t mind being a fallback.
My one condition is: I want you to be in love with me at least as much as that person.
Saying it’s okay to be your fallback was just hypothetical talk!
That doesn’t meant it’s okay to cheat on me, okay?
Thanks for accepting me.
When I lost a tennis match that I knew I couldn’t win,
I laughed so freely. But really, I was so frustrated.
Sometimes editor. Sometimes translator. Mostly a proofreader. I like Japan and things.