Concert Recitation, Act 2: Project YoRHa

Scene 1: Zinnia

No9 (Narration): Everything is designed to be destroyed.
In the never-ending spiral between life and death……
I continue to be trapped.
Is this a curse?
Or is this some kind of punishment?
Whatever god who dealt me this mysterious puzzle,
I wonder, will I someday raise my bow at him?

Zinnia, sounding very cheerful.

Zinnia: Hey, my name’s Zinnia. Everybody calls me Genius.*
…I’m just kidding.
“Zinnia” is the name of a flower. I guess they go through long periods without blooming.
My job’s, how do I put it……
I’m the head director of technological advancement for the Army of Humanity, I suppose.
I’m developing new android soldiers called “YoRHa” here on the 6th orbital satellite, “Lab”.
We’re developing state-of-the-art mechanical parts here and have gathered the most distinguished personnel.

No9 suddenly speaks up.

No9: What are you doing, Zinnia? Talking to yourself?

Zinnia: Ah, it’s you, No9.
Well, I figure when you YoRHa type androids are perfected, the whole world is bound to take notice, so… I’m practicing what to say at the press conference.

No9: Haha. What the heck. Isn’t that being a little over zealous?

Zinnia: A first-class researcher like me must make preparations not to be taken off guard after all.

No9: I wonder if that’s really the case…… Oh, No2!

No2: What? You want something, No9?

No9: No, I don’t particularly want anything, but…

No2: In that case, this is a waste of time.

No9: What do you mean, a waste of time?

Zinnia: haha C’mon, now, it’s not good picking fights.
No2, communication is one of the most important actions for androids.
It’s hardly a waste of time.

No2: ……Fine.

Zinnia: Alright, then! Today we’re going to test out everybody’s mobility.
Please tell everyone to meet at the testing block.
No9, especially……

No9 talks like Zinnia.

No9: Don’t get distracted and wonder off, doing other things; don’t forget!…… right?

Zinnia: Look at you! You’ve got it!

No9: You’ve said this a billion times. Of course, I’d remember.

Zinnia: Alright, let’s meet at the testing block in 10 minutes. Okay?

No2 & No9: Okaaaaaaaay.

No2 responds with a much shorter “yes”.

Zinnia (N): They are to become the base models for the new units, but……
To me, they’re like family…… No, they’re more like my students.
It will be hard to send them off to fight, but……
All I can do is help train them to be stronger now so they can handle whatever comes at them on the battlefield.

Zinnia pauses, his face drawn darkly.

Zinnia (N): ……At least… that’s what I thought.

Scene 2: A Name

No9: Hey, Zinnia. I’ve got something I want to ask you.

Zinnia: Oh, No9 and No2. You two always seem to be together, huh?

No2: It’s just a coincidence. I’m only here to give you the papers you asked for.

Zinnia: Ahh, thanks a lot…… So, No9, what did you come here for?

No9: Uh, it’s nothing, really. I just saw No2 walking by, so I thought I’d try following behind her.

No2: You’re such a creep.

No9: hahaha Don’t be like that!

Zinnia: What? If you’re just goofing around, couldn’t you do that somewhere else? I’m but a single man.

No9: No, no, I really have something to ask you!
Your name. It’s the name of a flower, isn’t it?
Why did you name yourself that?

Zinnia: I didn’t choose it. My former senior officer to gave it to me.

No9: Hmmm. Are names given out that easily?

Zinnia: Well, nicknames aren’t a problem, but your formal name… You’d generally need the approval from the Army of Humanity command.
If not, then there’d be a lot of trouble for your manager.

No2: Um…… We…

Zinnia: Huh?

No2: Could we…… be given names, too?

Zinnia is slightly taken aback.

Zinnia: Sure…… Once you’ve finished all your preliminary tests and your assignment has been decided, then I’d think command would give you official names.

No2 appears a little happy.

No2: I see……

No9: Uh, No2. It’s time for our memory storage check-up.
We need to get down to the server room.

No2: Alright. Thank you, Zinnia.

After a considerable pause.
Zinnia suddenly looks very dark.

Zinnia (N): They can never be given official names.
Within their YoRHa bodies rests a power supply of immense energy, powered by Bio-machine cores.
Units that incorporate technology from the enemy… It wouldn’t be right to use valid androids.
Once they roll off the production line, they’re named after their model number. This has already been decided at the meeting with command.
What am I……
What the hell am I doing……?

Scene 3: Constellations

Zinnia speaks in a very serious tone.

Zinnia: A large area in the eastern region of the Eurasian Continent was lost to the Bio-machines.
Not only can Dragoons not be deployed to the “Kingdom of Noon”, but androids have begun to retreat from the front lines.
We understand the cause. This is because androids have lost the will to fight.
The new urgently needed “YoRHa” units are riddled with problems.
Although they’re exceptionally powerful, since they require multiple high-quality cores from Bio-machines, the operating costs are far too high.
It’s unlikely we’ll be able to deploy more than 100 separate units.
Due to this, turning the tide of this war in our favor is highly improbable.

No2: Zinnia, may I come in?

Zinnia: Ah, No2. What’s the matter?

No2: I just have a question.

Zinnia: What is it?

No2: When we receive Earth’s relative coordinates from the satellite, what should we do if we’re unable to see the ground due to cloud cover?

Zinnia: Hmm, I don’t think the likelihood of that being an issue is very high…… but in that case, you could calculate your position based on the current time along with the stars within your observable range. For example, the constellation Orion.

No2: Orion?

Zinnia: That’s right. Humanity once looked up at the stars in the night sky and saw images of old gods spread out before them.
Honestly, I don’t believe in any gods, but the coordinate information is still relevant, so if we look closely……

Zinnia stops abruptly as though he’s just realized something.

Zinnia: Of course. That’s it……

No2: Zinnia? What is it?

Zinnia: Oh, it’s nothing. No, actually, it’s probably something.

No2: What a weirdo.

Zinnia (N): That’s right. Androids have lost the will to fight because they’ve lost the one thing they believed in: Humanity.
In that case, then all we need to do is create them.
For the past week, I’ve been working out the draft of this plan.
And the summary is thus:
We need to release a statement to all androids around the globe that “Humanity is still alive”.
Then, naturally someone will step up and demand, “Let me see them!”
In order to satisfy their curiosity, we’ll create a server on the face of the Moon from which to broadcast information from humanity.
Now, there’s an uninhabited base where the information on humanity is stored, so all we need to do is get that information out.
For this purpose, I’ll call the server the “Council of Humanity”.
Next, we’ll have to install full-time androids there from the android Special Forces as well as refurbish the 13th satellite to relay messages from the Council of Humanity.
Until this becomes common knowledge among all androids, this structure will……

Zinnia is a bit hesitant halfway through.

Zinnia (N): ……No, this won’t work. A plan like this is too risky. We can’t withhold information like this forever.
Maybe I’ll have to scrap this plan……

At that moment, No9 speaks up.

No9: Huh? Zinnia-san. What’s wrong? What’s with the long face?

Zinnia is shaking.

Zinnia: Oh, ohh…… Did I really look that upset?
No, it’s nothing, No9.

The darkness again falls upon Zinnia’s face.

Zinnia: It’s nothing.

Scene 4: Project YoRHa

No9 speaks in a serious tone.

No9 (N): At the time, No2 was undergoing tests just outside the Lab in the vacuum of space and was on standby.
As she finished preparing for the descent unit test, all she had to do was wait outside the Lab for the test to begin.
But the start of the test never came as scheduled, nor was any communication received from the Lab regarding a delay.
15 minutes after the scheduled time of the test, No2 decided it was merely due to a bad connection in communications, and returned back to the Lab.
And there she witnessed it.
What was really happening on the Lab.

No2 realizes something.

No2: What… is that……smoke coming out of the Lab……

No9 (N): There was smoke coming out of the catapult mechanism on the Lab.
Landing in the hanger, No2 saw that the usual lighting had been replaced by red emergency lights ominously illuminating the area.
It was a fire.
But a fire on an orbital satellite is different than those on the surface of the planet.
Not only is there nowhere to run, but the Lab is stocked with all sorts of materials and cargo that make it as dangerous as a powder keg that could explode at any moment.

No2 coughs.

No2: No9! ……Zinnia!!
Please hold on, I’m coming to help……!!

No9 (N): In silence, she made it to Zinnia’s room.
The artificial gravity on the satellite wasn’t working properly, which made it exceptionally difficult to traverse the hallways, but…
As though kicking the walls, she made it to Zinnia’s research room and opened the door.

No2: Zinnia……!!

No9 (N): And what she saw there was a raging fire of mechanical parts and papers.
And her fallen friends…

No2: No4…… No21…… What happened to you all!?

Zinnia: Ugh……

No2: Zinnia!? What happened?? Everybody……?

Zinnia’s on the verge of death.

Zinnia: You can’t…… No2…… Get away……

No9: Ha!!

No9 attacks and hits No2.

No2: Ahhhh!!!

No9. Speaking very calmly.

No9: Hee…… Isn’t that just like you battle types, huh, No2…… Doesn’t look like that’s a life-threatening wound, huh……?

No2: No9…… What’s going on……

No9: Hey, No2. Did you know? The hidden truth about us YoRHa androids.

Zinnia: No9…… Stop……

No9: Shut up!!

No9 kicks Zinnia.

Zinnia: Guhhhhh…

No2: Stop! No9! What did he ever do to you?!

No9: Huh, this asshole?
Well, this guy…… he made us YoRHa androids in the most unbelievable way!
You know that inside each of us is a Black Box, right?
We were told that it was just an abnormally high energy efficient fusion core, but……
But in actuality, these cores were salvaged from Bio-machines, reused and integrated into our bodies!

No9 laughs incessantly.

No9: haha Insane, isn’t it?
We may not be human, but we function and walk around just like those damn Bio-machines!
We’re nothing more than… monsters.

No2: But, even if that were true, why…?

No9: C’mon, No2.
This is only the beginning of the story!
You see, Zinnia here, set up this crazy-ass plan, a ploy to make people think that humanity was still alive on the moon! That way, morale among the other androids would grow.
But his plan was incomplete.
The managing satellite for the human server on the Moon. There was the risk of information leaking out.
That’s why I decided to rewrite his plan.
I’ll set up a backdoor in the newly revamped 13th orbital satellite that will open when a certain criteria is met.
The satellite will be destroyed when it’s attacked by Bio-machines, from which point only the server on the Moon will be left transmitting.

No9 slowly looks behind, talking in a very oratorical tone.

No9: And so, I will create a “God” on the face of the Moon for all androids!!
I have already sent a program to the Moon server to execute this plan.
It also contains the blueprints for all YoRHa designs.
By this method, the automated production of YoRHa squadrons will create God…
And then, YoRHa will have a God worth dying for…
Hey, No2. I think I’ll call this “Project YoRHa”……

As No9 looks back, No2 stabs him with her sword.

No2:  Please…… No9…… You’re…insane……!!

No9: Ughh…… uuuuhhhhh……
There’s…no stoping…this plan now……
We will all be recreated……
But, as the person I am now… I’m glad…… you’re the one…..
to kill me……

No2 (N): As the one who took No9’s life, I fell to the ground.
I thought I could see No9 smiling ever so slightly within the flames.

No9 (N): Hey, No2.
I wonder, what meaning is there in our birth…

No2 (N): I don’t know, No9. I don’t know……
There can only be tragedy waiting for us in the future.
We must have made a mistake somewhere.
We shall never be forgiven…… for all eternity……
All eternity……

Japanese to English translation by Rekka Alexiel.
Translations were made from a personal copy of the script received at the concert on May 4th, 2017.

* The pronunciation of Zinnia’s name in Japanese has more of a soft G or J sound, so his nickname “Genius” is a play off of his name, although this connection is lost due to the different pronunciation in English.