加载中…
个人资料
雪鸢
雪鸢
  • 博客等级:
  • 博客积分:0
  • 博客访问:7,009
  • 关注人气:5
  • 获赠金笔:0支
  • 赠出金笔:0支
  • 荣誉徽章:
相关博文
推荐博文
谁看过这篇博文
加载中…
正文 字体大小:

A Spell for Chameleon - Chapter 1 - Xanth - Page 1

(2006-12-03 10:51:15)
分类: 我的文章

A Spell for Chameleon《变色龙符咒》
by Piers Anthony(皮尔斯·安东尼)

Chapter 1. Xanth
第一章 赞斯

  A small lizard perched on a brown stone. Feeling threatened by the approach of human beings along the path, it metamorphosed into a stingray beetle, then into a stench-puffer, then into a fiery salamander.
  一只小小的蜥蜴趴在一块褐色的石头上。它感到沿小路而来的行人给自己带来了威胁,摇身一变,成了一只会叮人的甲虫,然后变成了一只臭虫,最后变成了一只火蜥蜴。

  Bink smiled. These conversions weren't real. It had assumed the forms of obnoxious little monsters, but not their essence. It could not sting, stink, or bum. It was a chameleon, using its magic to mimic creatures of genuine threat.
  宾克笑了。变了这么多,没有一样是真的。虽然外形变成了一些令人讨厌的小怪物,但都徒有其表。既叮不了人,也熏不了人,更不会喷火。这是一只变色龙,会把自己伪装成真正有威胁的东西,这就是它的魔法。

  Yet as it shifted into the form of a basilisk it glared at him with such ferocity that Bink's mirth abated. If its malice could strike him, he would be horribly dead.
  然后它又变形了,这次宾克不笑了。它变成了一头蛇怪,用狠毒到可以杀人的目光瞪视着他。如果它那凶狠的眼神可以用来攻击的话,宾克恐怕早就死掉了。

  Then abruptly a silent moth hawk swooped down from the sky and caught the chameleon in its beak. There was a thin scream of anguish as the lizard convulsed; then it dangled limply as the hawk ascended. The chameleon, despite all its pretensions, was dead. Even while trying to threaten Bink it had been destroyed by another agency.
  突然,一直蛾鹰悄无声息地从天而降,一口叼起变色龙就走。小东西痛苦地发出一丝微弱的惨叫,抽搐几下,身体就软瘫瘫地不动了。蛾鹰振翅而起。这只变色龙,再怎样变来变去,终是难逃一死。自己正忙着吓唬宾克,却被蛾鹰来了个螳螂捕蝉,黄雀在后。

  This retaliation continued to percolate through Bink's emotion. The chameleon was harmless - but most of untamed Xanth was not. Was this some twisted omen, a small suggestion of a dire fate awaiting him? Omens were serious business; they always came true, but usually were misinterpreted until too late. Was Bink fated to die brutally-or was some enemy of his?
  宾克反复琢磨着这件事情。变色龙并没有威胁——但是赞斯大陆上大多未被驯服的动物可就不一样了。这仅仅是一个预兆,预示着等待他的将是可怕的命运?预兆可不是开玩笑的,必将应验,但是它也经常被一些人错误地理解,等到他们发现时为时已晚。宾克就命中注定该悲惨地死去,或许,预兆指的是他的某些敌人?

  He had, so far as he knew, no enemies.
  据他所知,他没有一个敌人。

  The golden sun of Xanth - shone through the magic shield, striking sparkles from the trees. All plants had their enchantments, but no spell could eliminate the need for light, water, and healthy soil. Instead, magic was used to make these necessities of the vegetable kingdom more available, and to protect the plants from destruction, unless they were overpowered by stronger magic or simple bad luck, like the chameleon.
  赞斯金色的阳光透过魔盾撒向大地,映得树木金光闪闪。所有植物都有属于自己的魔法,但是任何魔法也替代不了阳光、水分和肥沃的土壤。相反,魔法只是用来使植物更好地利用这些必不可少的条件,还可以保护它们消灾免祸。但是如果遇上更强大的魔法或者像那只变色龙一样糟糕的运气,那也一样难逃厄运。

  Bink looked at the girl beside him as she stepped through a slanting sunbeam. He was no plant, but he too had needs, and over the most casual inspection of her made him aware of this. Sabrina was absolutely beautiful-and her beauty was completely natural. Other girls managed to enhance their appearance by cosmetics or padding or specialized spells, but beside Sabrina all other females looked somewhat artificial. She was no enemy!
  宾克看着身旁的女孩走在金灿灿的阳光下。他不是植物,但同样也有需求,仅仅是匆匆的一瞥,就让他意识到这种需求的强烈。萨布莱娜绝对是个美人,而且她的美丽不经
任何修饰。其他女孩用各种各样的手段打扮自己——化妆品、填充物、魔法,但是与萨布莱娜相比,所有人为装扮的美丽都显得黯然失色。论美貌,她无人能比!

  They came to Lookout Rock. This was not a particularly lofty promontory, but its situational magic made it seem more elevated than it was, so that they could look down on a quarter slice of Xanth. This was a land of multicolored vegetation, small pretty lakes, and deceptively quiet fields of flowers, ferns, and crops. Even as Bink watched, one of the lakes expanded slightly, making itself seem cooler and deeper, a better place for a swim.
  二人来到眺望岩。这个地方其实并不高,但是岩上有方位魔法,看上去比实际的位置要高,可以一览赞斯大陆四分之一的土地。赞斯到处都有五颜六色的植物,许多美丽的袖珍湖泊点缀其间,看似宁静的土地上长满了鲜花、蕨类植物和庄稼。就在宾克眺望的时候,一个湖泊的水面渐渐变大,湖水也显得更加凉爽深邃,变成了一个游泳的好去处。

  Bink wondered briefly about this, as he often did. He had an unruly mind, which constantly pestered him with questions for which there were no ready answers. As a child he had driven parents and friends almost to distraction with his "Why is the sun yellow?" "Why do ogres crunch bones?" "Why can't sea monsters cast spells?" and similarly infantile prattle. No wonder he had soon been hustled away to centaur school. Now he had learned to control his mouth, but not his brain, and so he let it run on in silence.
  宾克不由自主地想起这些事来,他经常这样。他的思维难以琢磨,经常为一些谁也回答不了的问题而困扰。小时候,他就问父母和朋友一些令他们手足无措的问题,诸如“太阳为什么是金色的?”“吃人妖怪为什么要啃骨头?”“海怪为什么会施魔法?”此类幼稚到极点的问题。也难怪父母匆匆忙忙就把他送到了半人马学校。现在他已经学着管住了自己的嘴,可他的脑子里,还是一刻不停地胡思乱想着。

  Animate spells he could understand, such as those of the unfortunate chameleon; they facilitated comfort, survival, or image for living creatures. But why should inanimate things have magic? Did a lake care who swam in it? Well, maybe so; a lake was an ecological unit, and the community of living things within it might have a mutual interest in promoting it. Or a freshwater dragon might be responsible, luring in prey. Dragons were the most varied and dangerous life forms of Xanth; species occupied air, earth, and water, and a number breathed fire. One thing they all had in common: good appetite. Pure chance might not bring in enough fresh meat.
  生物的魔法宾克还是懂得的,例如那只可怜的变色龙。魔法使它们过得舒适,逃避灾祸,或者模仿各种生物的形态。但是没
有生命的东西要魔法干吗?一个湖会在乎在它里面游泳的人是谁?嗯,或许它真的在乎;湖泊是一个生态系统,湖中生物有它们共同的利益,需要湖泊来促进。或者这是一头生活在淡水中的龙干的,靠魔法引诱并捕食。龙是赞斯形态最多样也最危险的生物;种类繁多的龙占据着天空、大地和水域,甚至有一些龙鼻息中会喷出火焰。它们共有的一个特点是:好胃口。光凭运气可找不到足够的肉来填饱肚子的

  But what about Lookout Rock? It was bare, without even lichen, and hardly beautiful. Why should it want company? And if it did, why not make itself more handsome, instead of remaining gray and drab? People did not come here to admire the rock, but to admire the rest of Xanth. Such a spell seemed self-defeating.
  那么眺望岩呢?光秃秃的,连块苔藓也不长,根本谈不上美丽。它干吗要把自己变高来找人陪伴?如果它真的需要人陪它,那为什么不把自己打扮得更帅气一点?总比灰不溜丢土里土气的模样要好吧。人们来这里是为了欣赏赞斯的美景,而不是来看一块石头。这样的魔法根本就是弄巧成拙嘛。

  Then Bink stubbed his toe on a sharp fragment of stone. He was standing on a cracked-rock terrace, formed generations ago by the breaking up of a pretty-colored boulder and-
  宾克的脚趾头踢到了一块锋利的碎石块。他站的地方是一处裂隙岩体阶地,本来是一块五彩巨石,许多年前却被凿成无数碎块——

  There it was! That other boulder, which must have been close to Lookout Rock and of similar size, had been fragmented to make this path and terrace, losing its identity. Lookout Rock had survived. Nobody would break it up, because it would make an ugly path, and its unselfish magic made it useful as it stood. One minor mystery solved.
  原来是这样!眺望岩附近其他大小相近的巨石都被凿碎来铺这条小路和这块阶地,因而也失去了本来面目。眺望岩却安然无恙。没有人愿意把他凿碎,因为它太丑了,用这些石块根本铺不出一条像样的道路来,而它那个无私的魔法更是可以让人们登高远望。又一个小小的谜团解开了。

  Still, there were philosophical considerations, his insatiable mind insisted. How could an inanimate thing think or have feelings? What was survival to a rock? A boulder was merely the fragment of a prior layer of rock; why should it have a personal identity if the bedrock didn't? Still, the same question could be asked of a man: he had been formed from the tissues of the plants and animals he consumed, yet he had a separate-.
  他永不知足地冥思苦想,甚至上升到了哲学层面。无生命的物体怎么能够思考?怎么会有感觉?一块岩石怎么会想着要生存下去?巨石不过是山岩的一个碎片;巨石有自己的意识,铺路的碎石就不会有吗?同样的问题也可以引申到人:人由他们吃下的动植物的组织构成,但却和动植物有着不一样的——

  "What did you wish to talk to me about, Bink?" Sabrina inquired demurely.
  “你想跟我说什么,宾克?”萨布莱娜一本正经地问。

  As if she didn't know. But as his mind formed the necessary words, his mouth balked. He knew what her answer had to be. No one could remain in Xanth after his twenty-fifth birthday unless he demonstrated a magic talent. Bink's own critical birthday was barely a month away. He was no child now. How could she marry a man who was so soon to be exiled?
  她好像并不知道似的。他在心里想好的词儿,将要说出来的时候却哽住了。她的回答不用说他也知道。过完二十五岁生日,想要继续留在赞斯,你必须证明你的魔法天赋。宾克离这个关键的日子只剩下不到一个月了。他已经不是小孩子了。萨布莱娜怎么会嫁给一个马上就要被驱逐出境的人?

  Why hadn't he thought of that before bringing her out here? He could only embarrass himself. Now he had to say something to her, or suffer further embarrassment, making it awkward for her as well "I just wanted to see your - your"
  带她出来之前为什么不仔细想想这些事?他只会让自己下不了台。事已至此,要么对她说点什么,要么变得更加尴尬,萨布莱娜也会感到难堪,“我只想看看你的,你的——”

  "See my what?" she inquired with an arch lift of eyebrow.
  “看我什么?”她眉梢一仰,问道。

  He felt the heat starting up his neck. "Your holograph,'' he blurted. There was much more of her he longed to see, and to touch, but that could come only after marriage. She was that sort of girl, and it was part of her appeal. The girls who had it didn't need to put it on casual display.
  宾克从脸红到了脖子。“你的全息造像魔法,”他脱口而出。想瞧的东西多着呢,不光瞧,还想摸,但那只能是结婚之后的事情了。她就是那种女孩,这也正是她的一部分魅力所在。这样的女孩根本不需要随便展示自己的美貌。

  Well, not quite true. He thought of Aurora, who certainly had it, yet who-
  嗯,也不完全是这样。他想起了奥罗拉,一样是个漂亮的姑娘,人家——

  "Bink, there is a way," Sabrina said.
  “宾克,还是有办法的。”萨布莱娜说。

  He glanced sidelong at her, then quickly away, confused. She couldn't be suggesting-
  他从旁边看了萨布莱娜一眼,又马上移开视线,他有些糊涂了。她该不会建议他——

  "The Good Magician Humfrey," she continued blithely.
  “伟大的魔法师汉弗莱,”她轻快地补充道。

  "What?" He had been on quite a different track, no credit to his willful mind.
  “什么?”他固执的思想又开始走神了,一时没有反应过来。

  "Humfrey knows a hundred spells. Maybe one of them-I'm sure he could find out what your talent is. Then everything would be all right."
  “汉弗莱会用一百种魔法。或许其中一个——我确信他可以找到你的魔法天赋。然后一切问题就都解决了。”

  Oh. "But he charges a year's service for a single spell," Bink protested. "I have only a month." But that was not quite accurate; if the Magician identified a talent for Bink, then he would not be exiled, and he would have a year available. He was deeply touched by Sabrina's faith in him. She did not say what others said: that he had no magic. She did him the immense courtesy of choosing to believe that his magic merely remained undiscovered.
  哦。“他要收费的,一年劳役换一个魔法,”宾克反驳道“我只有一个月的时间。”但事情也不是绝对的,如果魔法师发现了宾克的魔法天赋,他就可以免于放逐,人家会给他一年的时间来还债。萨布莱娜如此信任他,宾克十分感动。她从不像其他人说“你没有魔法”那样的话。她宁愿相信宾克的魔法尚未被发现,这是对他极大的尊敬。

  Perhaps it was that faith that had first attracted him to her. Certainly she was beautiful and intelligent and talented, a prize by any definition. But she could have been much less in all categories and still been his-
  也许正是这种信任让宾克爱上了她。毫无疑问,萨布莱娜美丽、睿智、天赋卓绝,无论从哪方面看都是一件宝贝。但是,即使她没有这么多优点,他仍然会——

  "A year is not so long," Sabrina murmured. "I would wait."
  “一年时间并不算长,”萨布莱娜低声说,“我会等你。”

  Bink stared down at his hands, pondering. His right hand was normal, but he had lost the middle finger of his left hand in a childhood accident. It had not even been the result of inimical magic; he had been playing with a cleaver, holding down a stalk of coilgrass while he chopped, pretending it was the tail of a dragon. After all, a boy could not start to practice too early for the serious side of life. The grass had twitched out of grip as he swung, and he had grabbed for it, and the cleaver had come down hard on his extended finger.
  宾克低头看着自己的双手,陷入深深的思索。他的右手没什么毛病,然而小时候的一次意外却让他失去了左手的中指。那甚至不是什么恶意魔法造成的;当时他在玩一把切肉刀,左手抓一把卷草,当作龙的尾巴一阵乱砍。当然,一个男孩子不必这么早就为将来严峻的生活做训练。他砍的时候卷草从紧握的手中被猛地一扯,他伸手便抓,切肉刀正剁在他伸出的手指上。

  It had hurt, but the worst of it was that because he was not supposed to play with the cleaver, he had not dared scream or tell of his injury. He had controlled himself with extreme effort and suffered in silence. He had buried the finger, and managed to hide his mutilation by keeping his hand closed for several days. When the truth finally came out, it was too late for a restorative spell; the finger was rotted and could not be reattached. A strong-enough spell could have attached it-but it would have remained a zombie finger.
  真疼啊,可最糟糕的是他根本就不该玩切肉刀。宾克不敢喊叫,也不敢告诉别人。他一声不吭,以极大的毅力默默忍受着疼痛。他把断指埋了,一连好几天都想方设法地把手藏在身后不被发现。可事情终归是隐瞒不住的,等被人发现时已经错过了使用治疗魔法的最佳时机;那根断指已经腐烂,无法再植。施一个强有力的魔法或许还可以把它接上——但充其量不过是一根没有生命的僵尸手指。

  He had not been punished. His mother, Bianca, believed he had learned his lesson-and he had, he had! Next time he played with a cleaver on the sly he would watch where his fingers were. His father seemed privately pleased that Bink had shown so much courage and tenacity in adversity, even in his wrongdoing. "The lad's got nerve," Roland had said. "Now if only he had magic-"
  宾克没有受到惩罚。他的母亲比安卡认为他已经得到教训了——事实也的确如此!以后背地里舞刀弄剑的时候他总是非常留意自己的手指。他的父亲私下里很高兴宾克能在逆境中表现出极大的勇气和坚韧,尽管整件事情并不是什么好事。“这小子有种,”罗兰说,“要是还会魔法就更好了——”

  Bink jerked his eyes away from the hand. That had been fifteen years ago. Suddenly a year seemed short indeed. One year of service-in exchange for a lifetime with Sabrina. It was a bargain.
  宾克的视线从手上移开。那已经是十五年前的事情了。一年时间转瞬即逝。相形之下,用一年的劳役换来与萨布莱娜厮守终生。这买卖划算。

  Yet - suppose he had no magic? Was he to pay a year of his life to verify the certainty of being thrust into the drear realm of the null-talented? Or would it be better to accept exile, preserving the useless hope that he did have a latent talent?
  可是——万一他真的什么魔法都没有呢?用一年的时间做代价来证明自己没有任何天赋,然后被强行送到没有魔法的平凡世界?要么直接接受被放逐的命运,怀揣一丝希望:他一定潜藏着魔法的天赋,只是尚未被发现?

0

阅读 评论 收藏 转载 喜欢 打印举报/Report
  • 评论加载中,请稍候...
发评论

    发评论

    以上网友发言只代表其个人观点,不代表新浪网的观点或立场。

      

    新浪BLOG意见反馈留言板 电话:4000520066 提示音后按1键(按当地市话标准计费) 欢迎批评指正

    新浪简介 | About Sina | 广告服务 | 联系我们 | 招聘信息 | 网站律师 | SINA English | 会员注册 | 产品答疑

    新浪公司 版权所有