What Is Truth?

The following are quotes from, and spoilers, for Umineko no Naku Koro Ni: Chiru episode 8, “Twilight of the Golden Witch”.

“If we have one almond in ten slices of cake, our chances of getting it are 10%. …But what if we ‘learn’ that those ten pieces were chosen at random from a hundred pieces? You’d think that the probability went from one in 10 to one in 100, right? Absolutely nothing has changed about your slice of cake. …Depending on whether or not you know or don’t know a certain fact, the probability of your slice being a winner changes. Doesn’t that sound strange?

In the future, various bits of information will affect the slice of cake in your hands. …By learning about those, the insides of your slice might change. Sometimes, they’ll change into things you want. …But most likely, almost all of the changes will be into bad things.”

“The truth is always right there in your hands, Ange. …Don’t you think it’s stupid to let it change around just because you hear someone else’s words? Just because you hear what they think the truth should be?”

“The truth inside of you has been in your hands from the beginning. …And the nature of that truth is actually something you decide for yourself. …You change it yourself depending on what you hear… and what you refuse to listen to.”

“The truth that lies in your hands is not unchangeable. You’ll be interfered with in many ways that’ll make it change. …So, if the truth you hold in your hands is really important to you…”

“You need to protect it yourself. Don’t forget it.”

“Get back, Purgatory troops! We’ll cover you!”
“It’s time you learned a lesson, goats!”

The golden bows of the Siestas mowed down the wall of goats with a shower of bright golden bullets.

Some of the goats were torn to pieces, but some of them seemed completely unaffected.

Then, the goats who were uninjured all whispered as one.

“…The Siesta Sisters Imperial Guards… have Maria’s rabbit dolls as their vessels…”
“…Theey’re actually rabbit dolls… Maria’s imagination, fantasy, fictional beings…”
“…All of the crimes can be explained by mystery… All fantasy is irrelevant…”

“Looks like-”
“We’ve got lots of people who won’t accept the existence of magic!”
“And that means?”
“No magical attacks will have any effect on them!”

“Does that mean all of our attacks will be completely useless?!”
“…Endless Nine nyeh. …If they don’t accept that we exist, our attacks can’t hurt them nyeh.”
“Is that possible…?!”

“<Good>! This really is getting fun, Battler-san!”
“Sorry, but I don’t have time to play with you right now!”
“I’m sorry too, but as a fellow Witch of Truth, I can’t let you get in Ange-san’s way.”
“…Come to think of it, you are a Witch of Truth too, aren’t you? I see, that makes you sort of a mentor to Ange.”
“The Single Truth! It is the supreme, the ultimate! Only a Witch of Truth can break down all barriers that stand between her and that truth!”
Is this Single Truth of yours really so important?! There are lots of things in this world that aren’t worth knowing. How important is 1986 to Ange, really?! It isn’t important at all!”
“*giggle*giggle*! You’re probably right! No matter what happened or didn’t happen in 1986, it won’t change anything for the Ange living in 1998! There’s no point in learning that truth. However, there is just one thing that will change.”
“What’s that?”
“How she lives!”

“It’s about time you gave up. I don’t even view this as a game between the two of us.”
“…Are you trying to say that I could never solve this puzzle?”
“I’m just buying time until Battler finishes dealing with Erika. He’s the only one who can bring you to your senses.”
“Bring me to my senses??? You’re the ones doing this to me by hiding the Single Truth! That’s why I’m fighting you! This is my right! As the final member of the Ushiromiya family, I have a right to know the truth!”
“Indeed. And that is the purpose of this final game.”
“…That’s right. Without this final game, I wouldn’t have been given a chance to reach the truth. At least for that one thing, I’m grateful.”
“But as for what happened in 1986… As for who took your relatives and your family away from you… As a human, your desire to know the truth is quite natural. However, even knowing this, Battler decided that it would be best if you didn’t return to 1986.”
“I know what Onii-chan’s trying to say. He’s telling me to look to the future and live, instead of being stuck in the past, right?!”
“Correct. Battler wanted to use this final game to show you that.”
“In that case, there’s no need to keep waiting for my answer. The answer is NO, Golden Witch! Back in 1986, I was already dead. I’ve wandered about like a ghost for 12 years since then! And when Eva oba-san died, I lost my only reason to stick around on this Earth as a ghost! That’s why I decided to do one last thing before ending my life!”
“And that thing would be learning the truth of 1986?”
“Yeah! Something wrong with that?!”
“Indeed there is, foolish girl! So, when you do reach the truth, you plan to die? In that case, I can’t let you have it! I must trick you and blind you as much as I can… to keep you alive! Battler wants you to live!”
“Living without truth is no better than dying! I’m trying to find the truth so I can live!”
“You just admitted you were searching for the truth so you could die.”
“Yeah, that’s true. Then let me rephrase that. I’m trying to find the truth so I CAN die! I offered up my life when I made my contract with Bernkastel! All so I could learn what happened on that day! That Single Truth will be the souvenir I take with me to hell!”

“At first, this was supposed to be a game in which you were given a key. A key that would let you decide your future.”
“Liar. You wanted to hide the truth in this chapel, then make me choose a door that leads to some optimistic future. That’s not a choice! You’re trying to decide for me!”
“Parents have the right to prevent their children from making unsuitable choices.”
“I’m not a kid! I’m an 18 year old woman, who can think and act for herself!”
“Fool! You’re just a six year old girl, who can’t think of anything except the past!”
“And whose fault is that? Because of you, I’ve been stuck as a six year old all this time! Now it’s time for me to tear apart your illusion covering the truth! Yes, now that I think about it, it’s not this chapel that you’ve locked me inside! Since that day in 1986, for all these years, you’ve had me locked away in a closed room where I’m all alone, and where no one will tell me the truth, and now, I’ll tear your closed room apart with my own hands! …Yeah, it’s useless, it’s all useless. I know the trick to your perfect closed room. Repeat it! ‘You murdered me immediately after shutting me into this closed room!'”
“I refuse.”
“Of course. You’ve been killing me for 18 years. Thanks, Beatrice. If you hadn’t reminded me, I wouldn’t have figured out the trick.”
“Ange. You are young, and you have a long future ahead of you. In fact, you are a Golden Witch living in the future, are you not? Then live in the future. Just how much is a truth of the past really worth? Isn’t the truth of the future, the truth that you will create yourself, far more important?!”
“My life is trash. My whole family died, leaving just me behind. That’s why I’m going back to them once I’ve gotten my Single Truth.”
“If you learn the truth, you’ll just have to accept your family’s deaths! Haven’t you ever thought about living on, hoping that by some miracle, one of them might have survived? And that someday, you might get a chance to see them again?”
“I’m not worried about that. Even the Witch of Miracles couldn’t find a Fragment like that. Even though I wanted to know the truth, I was unconsciously averting my eyes. I felt that learning of my family’s deaths for certain would force me to deny any possibility of someone miraculously surviving… but I’m tired of living on and on, with nothing but that  impossible hope of a miracle to keep me going. That’s why I decided to  accept my family’s deaths. I decided to accept the truth, no matter what  it is. That’s why I became a Witch of Truth!”

A blinding light poured out of the chapel. It seeped from the windows and the cracks of the door, even reaching as far as  Battler’s and Erika’s eyes.
“–What?!”
“It would seem that comrade Ange has completed her task. It looks like you’ve used some useless seal, but to my master, that’ll be easier than thawing frozen saury fish.”
“D-damn…!”
“Master said I could play with you until Ange finished her task. I’ve had enough fun from this reunion, so I think it’s time for me to leave.”

Erika gave an elegant curtsey.

“Why did you talk Ange into looking for the Single Truth?! Your master must know…! That truth doesn’t mean anything for Ange!”
Yes. All truths in this world are meaningless. In the end, ‘meaning’ comes from the mind of each individual human. …Even when there is a Single Truth, it can mean different things to different people! The truth has no meaning in itself! There’s just one reason why I’m still stuck on the truth despite it all!”
“Because you’re a detective!”
“<Good>! But Ange-san isn’t a detective. To her, the truth itself is the finish line. …A way to mark the end of her unhappy life. Now, she’s finally finished the last purification ceremony She’s a one-night Witch of Truth, focused on learning a certain Single Truth before she dies! A temporary witch for the short time until she slams against the ground!”
“I won’t let Ange die! No matter how tough it gets, she has to live! That’s the only thing all of us want! If she lives, all sorts of magic and miracles would be possible…!”
If only you’d put your arm around her shoulder and told her that directly, you might not have lost. What do you say? Just by hearing you howl, see how far Furudo Erika’s reasoning takes her.”

“…It should be known that to expose the truth is to kill.”
“Why can’t humans live without killing, I WONDER. …Throughout their long history, so many have prayed for miracles… but in the end, they eat up their own chances at receiving a miracle, eating up the very ground they stand on and falling into the ABYSS…”
“Humans are… sad creatures, fated to live in order to learn.”
“…If learning means eating away at the same hopes and dreams that keep you alive, that would mean humans are born just so they can die. We’re taught that we have to live. However, almost everything that we accomplish in life ends up killing us…”
“Don’t think about it. You’ll just get a headache.”
“As a single human, I want to ask. …Is learning a crime?! Is living in ignorance the only way we can have hopes and dreams?”
“…Both living with knowledge and living in ignorance have their benefits, as well as their shortcomings. You’re even free to choose which path you take. …That’s what makes humans powerless.”
“While people can learn, they cannot ‘unlearn’…”
“And so, the all-knowing god has stepped in for the sake of the humans who cannot do this, marking out things that should be learned and things that should not be learned.”
“Too much curiosity… can kill… your hopes and dreams.”
“Humans are pitiable beings, who are unable to simply avoid those things which should not be LEARNED.”

“A piece is all I am. The role of a piece is to remain faithful to its role until the game ends. …It’s not a piece’s place to worry about what happens after the game is over.”

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5 thoughts on “What Is Truth?

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