I'm having a bit of trouble understanding how to properly use reported speech, if in a direct sentence there's a conditional structure. Case in point:

  1. If I were rich I would have already bought that car.

Do I only need to backshift the whole sentence?

  1. He said that if he had been rich he would have already bought that car.

Or, another example, this time taken from The Wolverine movie.

  1. In three days, when they read his will, I will become the most powerful person in Japan.

If I wanted to recount what that person told me a while ago, and that thing doesn't hold true at the moment of speaking, would I just go:

  1. She told me that in three days when they read his will, she would become the most powerful person in Japan.

And, staying on topic of conditionals, could somebody tell me what exactly happened in just another quote from that movie?

  1. Mariko would have never gone through with the wedding, not once the will was revealed.
  • You could change "read his will" to "make|made his will public" for better clarity. Today I read. Yesterday I read. (different pronunciation [rId (reed), rEd (red)] but the same spelling) – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 6 '15 at 13:48
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    That is, the shift won't be detectable (in writing) with "read". – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 6 '15 at 14:18
  • And apart from that slight difference, the sentences written in reported speech are perfectly correct? – Bebop B. Jan 6 '15 at 16:52
  • As an AmE speaker, I use backshifting rather a lot, compared to what the British E-speakers here say they do. Your reported-speech sentences sound good to me, yet my ear finds the past-perfect here to be too much: He said that if he /had been rich/ he would have already bought that car. My ear wants to understand that as HIS talking about an event that was in the past in HIS life, not merely a backshift to signal reported speech of a present irrealis. I would be lazy and stick with were there. But you should get other opinions. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 6 '15 at 17:21
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    @Karl: The consensus opinion seems to be that Americans (and perhaps Canadians too, I'm not sure) use both the subjunctive and the backshift more than speakers of BrE do. I've not studied the phenomenon myself. Just reporting what I've heard. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Oct 24 '18 at 9:54

Mariko would have never gone through with the wedding, not once the will was revealed.

Mariko would never have gotten married--not after the will had been revealed.

When the contents of the will were revealed, Mariko had a reason to not get married.

To go through with something means to actually do it, to see it from start to finish, to complete something that is planned or contemplated.

He threatened me, but I knew he would not go through with it.

Once, in that sentence about Mariko, could be translated "immediately after". It refers to a situation that "comes-to-be-as-of-that-moment". "The very moment that..." or "as soon as".

Once I saw that look in her eyes, I knew it was she who had killed the cook.

Once he heard her goose-like laugh, he knew they could not spend a life together.

You cannot change your mind after leaping from a cliff. Once you've jumped, you've jumped.

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