Dalian’s Yes

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I’m really enjoying The Mystic Archives of Dantalian (Dantalian no Shoka). Sure, it has lots of implausibilities, but I’m willing to overlook them. In the gothic-horror genre, style and atmosphere always trump plausibility.

However there’s one thing that keeps bugging me. Dalian has a verbal quirk: she constantly says “Yes” in English when confirming someone else’s statement. That’s not unusual in that lots of anime girls have distinctive quirks in their speech.

Except that…even though the dialog is in Japanese, the story is set in England, so presumably everyone is really speaking English. What would be the English equivalent of saying “yes” when speaking Japanese?

Could it be that she is actually saying “hai”? Or more likely, given her tone of voice, “sou desu”?

That wouldn’t be totally unreasonable. She shows a great deal of familiarity with East Asian literature. In the 1920s that would probably imply that she can at least read Chinese or Japanese.

I would be interested to know what Gakuto Mikumo, the author of the light novels, really had in mind.