“Believe me, Alice. If imprisoning you was my only goal, I wouldn’t have this much devotion towards you.” -Joker
Joker has a short route of his own in Diamond no Kuni no Alice ~Wonderful Wonder World~, and in this post I reviewed his scenes (two of them) in a lot of detail while opting for word-to-word translation for the end. I went for the good end, “the Stage for Two”.
Note: To completely understand the happenings of Joker’s route one needs to have some ideas about the dream train scenes that are a part of the common route, which I’ll cover someday. Far away into the future, but someday. XD I’ll probably cover the common scenes during my review of Blood’s route, which is crazy long and still work in progress.
Alice is in town when she bangs into some guy, but he’s nice enough to apologize even though Alice was the one who ran into him. Alice feels happy about how people are so much calmer during the Survey meetings, but she gets a little tired from all the crowds and decides to go somewhere quiet. Which somehow equals her straying off into the Forest of Arrows (even Alice is confused at her own actions XD).
She notices that there’s a small plaza-ish place in a gap among the trees, where two young kids-one boy and one girl-are standing with a huge ball. While she’s debating internally over calling out to them, the boy notices her and interrogates her about what she’s doing here. A nervous Alice admits she came here just by chance and he’s like ‘YOU’RE WEIRD’, which the girl also agrees to XD. Seeing how they weren’t expecting to be seen, Alice’s interest is piqued, and when she asks what exactly they are doing so deep in the forest, they answer that they’re practicing for the circus (explains the cautiousness). Just their reply makes Alice’s heart jump crazily.
Show of acrobatics. Cheers of joy. Confetti dancing in the wind.
Even though I just imagined the scene from what they said, why do I feel so tense?
Never mind my uneasiness, their very presence here was abnormal. Why are kids from the Circus at a place like this?
(There shouldn’t be a Circus at this country!)
Alice asks them why they’re practicing here, and they explain they’re doing some secret training to improve themselves since they sometimes get left out from the Circus programs because of their occasional mistakes. They’re not happy some random chick like Alice stepped into their private matter and pretty much tell her to gtfo.
There was no circus in this country.
Yet why am I this shaken by just hearing about it?
And I remembered.
Certainly, as far as I know there’s no Circus in this country. But I feel that I have viewed their shows.
Like an afterimage repeatedly burned into my mind-or maybe a vision-viewing over and over inside my dreams.
She insists to herself that she shouldn’t have encountered such a spectacle no matter how real it feels in her memory-like imagination. The kids get impatient while she’s mulling over the deja vu she’s experiencing, and the unusual fear the concept was making her feel. She breaks out of her reverie because of their yelling, and when she’s trying to take her leave something unusual happens.
All the arrows around her suddenly become warped and start moving like living beings. Alice is seriously weirded out and can’t figure out the way she came from because of the abrupt change in scenery, but the little shits still insist on her going away and push her back. >.<
They make her confusion even worse when they start pointing her in different directions. However, right then Alice’s prince in white armor- ah, Clown in multicolored outfit appears. XD
White: Hey hey, give it a break you two. Stop troubling the poor girl. Don’t you feel bad for her?”
With White joker’s appearance the arrows stop their strange movement as well. Alice recognizes him instantly as the conductor she met in her dreams, and also the warden. Also, while he hasn’t mentioned his name even when they met in dreams, Alice manages to remember his name and calls him ‘Joker’, which he’s pretty happy about.
“Hello, Alice. It makes me really happy to hear you call my name. ”
Alice notices how natural it feels for them to call each other, and is sure that they had a relationship that involved them talking to each other like this (though she has doubts if it really was a friendly one). She asks Joker what he’s doing here, and he’s like “To save you, of course~”. He tells off the little shits rather gently, but Alice notices they left their practice ball behind when they run off to practice somewhere else XD. How scared are they of him? Alice is concerned about the ball, but Joker pays it no mind.
White: You don’t need to worry, Alice. There’s no lack of replacements for this.
Alice feels like he’s being a bit cold as he kicks the ball away. When she argues having a usual practice tool is easier, he stresses that tools are just that, tools. He refutes her logic by pointing out it’d be troublesome if they couldn’t function without a certain one.
White:Never mind that. Let’s focus on how you ended up coming to a place like this. You really are always getting lost, aren’t you?”
White: Plus you got lost deeper than ever before. It would be so much easier on you if you just got on a train.” (So I see he isn’t trying to BS about his conductor identity. Good.)
Alice is skeptical about his trains making anything easier for her, and he’s like ‘well yeah, you gotta decide on a place first’ and Alice is all >.< IT ALL COMES DOWN TO THAT WITH YOU. She grumbles that she doesn’t have a ticket and she has no interest in getting on his weird train.
Joker is amused by her answer, and for some reason jumps onto the ball left behind by the kids, in perfect Circus Clown fashion. o.o He teases her about how she has already rode the train many times, and she claims she didn’t do it by choice, Joker dragged her in there. Joker shows some exaggerated sadness at that comment.
White: How sad of you to think that way! I’d never do something so forceful like dragging you into something!
Black: Hell yeah! Well, I can’t blame ya for doubting this rascal who fakes being a gentleman, but it’s irritating when even I’m treated the same as this bastard!
Alice is a little surprised when the mask attached to his waist started talking, but that’s all she feels. Rather she feels that it’s only natural.
Then the two Jokers start their comedy routine where White tells Black to stay put while he explains stuff to Alice and Black blames White for being weird and making Alice doubt them XD. Alice absorbs this spectacle pretty calmly while thinking that this ventriloquism like comical exchange feels like something she’s used to. Nevertheless, she wants to go back to the main point.
Alice: I haven’t once thought about getting on your train. Stop trying to lure me into weird places.
Black: Hear hear, Joker! Girl’s got guts to falsely blame us for something like that! When she’s not even a woman worth luring, heh!
White: I’d refrain from commenting on her charm, but I do agree with you about the false charges. Hey Alice, Let me repeat it again-I haven’t once forcibly taken you anywhere.
White: You come to me of your own will. Even though you want to decide upon your destination, you end up losing your way. That’s why you keep getting on the train over and over.
Alice: You’re saying I rode it of my own will? That I’m losing my way despite wanting to make a decision?
White: Yes, that’s right. That’s why I keep telling you-you should decide your destination quickly.
Black: If you’re worried about it, decide already! And if you’ve decided, stop fucking worrying! If you keep hesitating forever meaninglessly it’s a pain in the ass for us who get slapped with false charges!
Alice wonders about what Joker means by ‘destination’-basically the place where one decides to be of their own will. Then she can reply in 2 ways:
1. I don’t want to decide by myself: Alice pessimistically declares that it’s pointless to decide on her own when the next ‘move’ can forcefully take her away from where she decides. Joker notices her sad muttering and replies:
White: And yet you must decide. Maybe it might be decided for you if you let things be…but the problem here is that you just don’t want to make a decision at all yourself.
2. I don’t want to make a decision right now: In this case Alice just decides to selfishly announce that she doesn’t WANT to make a decision, and both Jokers are like *facepalm* XD. It also adds a love point.
White: You’re still saying things like that? Hasn’t it already been a long time since you came to this world?
Black: GAH, all that faltering is so pathetic I could vomit! That sure is like you…You really like being indecisive, don’t ya?
Alice: It isn’t like I do that because I want to.
Also I’m scared. Of finding an answer.
White: I don’t know what to say. This isn’t just ‘like you’-I don’t think there can be any other answer that suits you more than that.
Regardless of the choice, White cheerfully (and with a creepy face) declares one last thing before he takes a one-legged turn still standing above the ball, bows to her, and vanishes into thin air.
White:At any rate, our encounters will continue. Until the day you finally hand over your ticket.
Alice is just left to wonder if the whole thing was just a dream. After she returns to wherever she’s staying at, people are worried about her complexion looking pale and advise her to get more sleep. But she thinks “I’m scared of sleeping. If I sleep, I’ll dream again.”
Alice once again strays off into the same place inside the forest and meets the little bastards, who’re like “YOU AGAIN”. Alice notices they have some new tools for practice today, and that these kids are part of “Joker’s” circus. She doesn’t remember actually meeting Joker at his Circus, but she just knew the fact that he’s simultaneously the Circus Master and the Warden.
On top of that, right now he keeps showing up in front of me in Conductor’s getup over and over. I don’t feel like watching a circus run by such a shady guy.
While the kids are considering relocating (Joker scared them good last time <3) Alice is being skeptical about the reality of the situation since she believes there shouldn’t be a circus in this country, but she also can’t deny that these kids who are under Joker’s supervision are right in front of her. We get two choices:
1.Real: Alice admits that this is reality. She’s awake and fully aware of her actions, and came here on her own. Neither the forest nor the kids in front of her should be mere fantasies.
2.Not real: While Alice admits she came here by herself, her memory feels vague when walking in this forest and she’s unsure whether she hadn’t nodded off already and gotten lost in dreams.
When Alice is mulling over the reality of the situation, Joker suddenly pops up as if he knew what she was thinking about.
White: This is reality.
Alice is surprised at the voice that seemed to come from nowhere, but she finds herself standing on the corridor of a vacant train car the next moment.
White: For you, this is a definite reality. This isn’t anything like a dream, but something that actually is happening.
Alice is like “:/ You expect me to believe that, after bringing me into this totally dream-like space?” and tells Joker that while the scene with the kids might have been real, she became sure this was a dream the moment he appeared. Joker asks her why, and she very logically points out that she can’t just suddenly warp into this train in reality XD. She tells him to stop dragging her into such places already, and White is like ‘le sigh’.
When he asks for her ticket, Alice is shocked to find the sensation of holding something in her right hand.
White: You wouldn’t refuse me, right? You came here by yourself, holding that ticket of yours.
(Did I come here? To Joker, of my own will?)
No, that can’t be!
Alice’s denial meter is to the max and she surprises White by turning back and breaking into a run. The seats in all the cars are vacant, but the scenery is different for each car.
Castle of Diamonds.
Museum….all these were scenes that exist in this country.
The moment I settled upon the idea, the scenery changed to….Castle of Hearts.
Tower of Clover….Scenes I had already lost the chance to return to.
The view changes according to seasons as well. Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter- sceneries of all four seasons jumble in a mix of colors.
All of these were precious scenes that I couldn’t forget easily.
By this time Joker has caught up to her, and he tells her to stop since there’s nowhere she can go even if she manages to run away from him. Alice still doesn’t want to show him her ticket, because she feels “If I show him my ticket, I could tell that I’d never again be able to return to where I’m living right now.” He tells her she can’t escape this, it’s a dead end already.
True to his words, the next car had the Circus as the outside scenery, and Black standing in front of her.
Black: Damn, stop being a pain in the ass! Have some freakin’ backbone after you managed to come this far!
He had the same face and figure as the Joker standing behind me. But his tone was much rougher.
The nickname I had given him suddenly came back to me.
Black-san, the foulmouthed one who normally stayed inside the mask.
The other one was White-san.
Both of them were ‘Joker’, the same yet different entity. They could also exist seperately.
(I’d forgotten. They are neither a product of ventriloquism nor twins.)
Black: Because you came of your own will, this a genuine dead end. Did you really think there’d be a way to escape when my great self is here?
Behind me, White-san. In front of me, Black-san.
Trapped between them might really be a stalemate for me.
White: You’re late, Joker. If you’re going to come, come a little earlier. Be a little more tactful.
Black: Huh!? Be grateful that I bothered to even come, Joker! It was just pitiful watching a bully like you leading a single girl by the noose!
White: Hey, I’m not a bully! I’m not leading her around either! I only thought it’s sad if I don’t let her resist this one last time. How sad that you’d blame me for that!
Black: Hmph, pretty big words from someone who looks so out of it. You really don’t have your usual composure if even my entry seems to piss you off. Right, Joker?
White: I merely don’t like it when you swoop in at the end to take away the fun part.
The conversation between two of them is comical even at a time like this. But there is a certain harshness to it today.
(I think I agree about him not having his usual composure.)
White: With that, Alice-playing tag is over. Have you made up your mind yet?
Alice: I ran away BECAUSE I haven’t! Do you need me to spell that out?! (Alice you’re so honest today XD)
White: Well, that is true. But you must make a decision now. Even you realize that after coming this far, right?
Black: Yeah, you’ve already come this far. Come, show me your ticket quickly. This is the final stop.
Alice: Stay away from me! Ah!
Black-san quickly grabs my arm. Just from that my body trembles and refuses to move.
White: Thanks for the help, Joker! How nice of you to help out when this isn’t the end you wanted.
Black: I don’t really care. Regardless of what I want, I never expected anything from someone like this.
White: Hehe, as expected of Joker. You’re such a liar.
Black: There’s no way she could escape. Since we all know that, let’s just end things quickly.
White: Seeing you trying to act tough while being so sweet on her is kind of disgusting.
After that, White grabs onto her shoulder while Black holds on to her right wrist, and they try to confirm the content of the ticket Alice is gripping in her hand. Alice resists fervently, not wanting to show it to them yet.
I don’t want to be captured by them yet. Even if they tell me I’m just faltering, right now I can’t…
While trying to find a way to escape, her flailing left hand finds something hard inside her pocket, something bigger than the vial that was supposed to be there. Black tells her to stop struggling, and she thinks about creating a distraction by at least throwing it at them or something.
But when she shoves her hand into her pocket and brings the mystery item out, it turns out to be the most unbelievable thing-a small silver pistol tinged with a light shade of blue. Alice is shocked speechless, because she had never owned a gun even after coming to this world.
Black: You…what the hell’s that!? Impossible, could it be you’ve already….
White: Alice!? Why do you have something like that…?!
Alice notes how shaken up they are despite being so familiar with guns (Obviously they’re suspecting that Alice is starting to become a resident), and decides to act quickly to use this golden chance to escape. There’s 3 options:
1. Shoot White-san: Regardless of which Joker Alice shoots, they turn into confetti and disappear. Alice is completely shocked that she did such a thing impulsively, but Black Joker is even more surprised.
Black: Hey hey! Are you serious!? You shot Joker!?
Black: Do you realize the meaning of pulling the trigger? To shoot Joker with a gun?
He still holds on to her, so a struggling Alice ends up shooting the ceiling anyway.
2. Shoot Black-san: Exactly the same thing as before, just White is less shaken by the event than Black, or hides it better.
White: You really do some unbelievable things at times. I can’t believe you shot Joker.
White: And you chose the Joker other than me. While that shot was no more than a thoughtless action, the meaning behind it is….
3. Shoot the ceiling: The ‘right’ action which raises a love point. Alice points the gun to the ceiling and shoots, and surprisingly that destroys the WHOLE roof which flutters down in the form of confetti.
White: Oh my. How very rash of you. You brought out that gun already?
Black: Even if you used a gun, what on earth was that crappy stunt? Bleh, that totally ruined the mood.
No matter if both Jokers are still in one piece or not, once Alice shoots the ceiling they turn into confetti as well and disappear from the car. A dumbfounded Alice collapses on her knees and is like ‘WTH just happened’. The disembodied voices of both Jokers explain to her than it’s because of Nightmare’s interference. The Jokers had planned to make this a place closed off from outside interference, but still he managed to infiltrate somehow. (Black grumbles how Nightmare is a gutless worm who is only good at sneaking in XD) But they don’t seem too worried about it.
Black: After all this mess with the Incubus, we’ll back off this time. But in the end it’s all meaningless, you can’t run from yourself.
White: I look forward to the next time we meet. Your own impatience is the reason we’re hurrying so much, but I guess there’s no need to hurry over something that’s guaranteed to fall into our hands.
One last confetti dances down to touch Alice’s forehead. With that, the world turns black.
二人だけのステージEND (The Stage for Two End)
(The Stage for Two End is the good end you get for the Joker route. DON’T SHOOT THE JOKERS IF YOU WANT TO CRAWL INTO THEIR HEARTS. OR CLOCKS. WHATEVER. XD
I’ll be translating the whole end without any of my smart mouthing. FOR REASONS. Fufufufufu.)
When I open my eyes I find myself in prison.
Outside the cell bars, not inside.
But that was the only relief. Although I was outside the cage, the situation was more than enough to make me feel grim.
The world changes before I can finish blinking. And not in a good way.
White: I waited for you, Alice. I knew you’d come again.
The man in a Warden uniform was in front of me.
Alice: Is this a dream?
I thought right after asking the question-that I already knew what his answer is going to be.
Black: Hey, how about you stop worrying over that crap already? It doesn’t matter if this is reality or not.
Black: You’re here right now. Isn’t that the important part?
Black: You’re free to think of this as a dream.
Black Joker also has come out, and he was coexisting with his other half.
Black: If you want to think of this as a dream, feel free to think so. A dream that you can never come out of, never wake up from……like the inside of these cells.
White: Can’t you refrain from talking that way, Joker? You’re scaring her.
Black: Heh, you’re one to talk. You’re the one who’s always freaking her out.
White: Hehe, I don’t mean to frighten her deliberately. It’s her freedom to interpret my actions as she wishes, but how unfortunate that I’d get blamed for that.
Joker begins to walk towards me. I reflexively start backing away, but find my back hitting the wall too soon.
No, it’s not a wall.
It’s a prison cell.
White: Please don’t glare at me like that. I’m not the one responsible for approaching you.
White: It’d be easy to imprison you beyond these bars. But I don’t wish for that either.
Alice: You’ve got some nerve to say that, Warden. There’s no way I can believe that.
He’s acts as the Warden and the Conductor simultaneously. In the end, I wonder whether he wishes to send me away or lock me up.
(Or maybe……both of those mean the same thing?)
He holds onto my shoulder in a strong grip. Even though he just grasped it with one hand, somehow I can’t move.
Black: You’re the one who can’t bear to stay away from me. That’s why you keep stepping into the prison like this.
Black: The one who wanted this wasn’t me, but you. However, I also want you.
White: Yes, the you who wants me.
White: Believe me, Alice. If imprisoning you was my only goal, I wouldn’t have this much devotion towards you.
His lips come down to seize mine as his hand holds me in place. I forgot to even close my eyes in surprise.
The metallic sound of my back pushing against the cell enters my ears. The coldness is transmitted along my spine as his body weight drives me against it harder.
Which Joker is this?
I can’t distinguish between them when our lips are fused together.
I had hardly registered his lips leaving mine when they started traveling along my neck. The contrast between the heat of his touch and the coldness of the bars against my body makes me shiver.
I can’t resist. With his hands gripping both my shoulders, the iron bars creak in protest as my body is pressed even more firmly against them.
Alice: It hurts! Hey, stop…!
White: ….I won’t. I need to make you understand just how devoted I am to you.
His tone made me think that, but that sadistic expression of his had Black written all over it.
His lips leave deliberately loud, wet sounds as they move lower and lower. When the warmth finally touches the hollow of my collarbone, I realize that I must do something before this goes too far.
I shove him back with all my strength. He staggers a little, but supports himself easily by placing his hands against the wall.
Black: That was quite a rejection. You’re going to hurt my feelings, ya know?
Just when do they keep switching? This man whom I can’t even pinpoint as either Black or White-who does he think he is, acting like I’m the bad guy here?
Alice: Of course I’m going to reject that!
White: Really? Will you really reject me, in the truest sense of the word?
While I’m glaring at him, Joker’s form starts to quiver in front me. Like the tremors of a reflection on the water’s surface, his figure changed before too long.
Warden clothes disappear to make room for a brighter, colorful costume. It was precisely the attire of a clown, complete with that strange hat.
And, one part of the scene around me inside the prison also changes.
A circular stage. Just like that of a circus.
Even though there’s no audience, the sounds of applause and cheers ring from afar.
Instead of the chaos that should have been there, my chest fills up with exhilaration.
White: Come, this way. This is a stage for you.
Alice: ……! What’re you sayi-…..!
White: You’re to stand on the stage together with me. Because you’re special.
He takes my hand and leads me to the stage. The happy cheers resound inside my ears.
The stage alongside the prison. A strange spectacle.
And yet that mesmerizing sense of exhilaration doesn’t leave my body.
Black: See? You aren’t rejecting me. This is after all the stage for the two of us.
(…….Two? Not three?)
Joker’s hand guides me forward once again. The cheers of the crowd sounding so far away.
It finally starts-a stage teeming with color, neither black nor white.
Wow the last part was hot, despite Joker’s Giraffe tongue lol And I love how he made it clear that this wasn’t just about locking her up, he wants her to be with him whether it’s at the prison or the circus~