A look into King Guran’s past!
Story/Art: Rei Toma
Translation: JN Productions
English Adaptation: Ysabet MacFarlane
What They Say
Princess Nakaba of Senan and Prince Caesar of Belquat only married each other for the sake of peace between their two warring countries, yet the two develop feelings for each other while political forces threaten to tear their world apart. With Caesar’s departure to Belquat, the couple separates. Meanwhile, Nakaba manages to take control of Senan as ruler! But once Caesar’s father, King Guran, decides to break the peace treaty and invade Senan, what will Caesar do when he’s caught between his father and the woman he loves?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
When it’s discovered that Letina can be melted using the Arcana of Fire, our heroes speculate that the King of Belquat must be sacrificing Ajin with the Arcana in order to make his blades. Meanwhile, King Guran decides to make himself one step more despicable and dispatches his army upon hearing Nakaba has gained control of Senan. To start off the assault he sends Caesar and his troops. Of course, Caesar has no intent of following through with what his father wants, and instead ends up allying with Nakaba in order to start a revolution.
In a questionable move, Nakaba then decides to use the Arcana to look into King Guran’s past, wondering why he didn’t utilize the Arcana of Time instead of trying to wipe it out. What she finds there, though, is the touching love story between a commoner named Sara and the young King. In order to not worry about appearing weak to outsiders by marrying a commoner, he decides to simply make the country strong. They happily have a son together, but eventually an oracle appears before him. Sara falls sick, and the distraught Guran pressures the oracle to look into the future. With his Arcana of Time, the oracle sees that Sara will soon die, which of course comes true. Deciding the Arcana may be a curse to change the future rather than simply view it, the heartbroken king slays the oracle, and begins working to wipe out the power completely.
Though it breaks her heart a little, Nakaba still follows through and begins the revolution. While working to sneak into the palace Loki is confronted by a powerful Ajin guard. He’s almost slain by a sneak attack from the fallen foe, but Caesar selflessly throws himself in front of the blade, fortunately coming away with only a tiny wound in the process. Caesar makes it into the castle, and makes one last request to his father to make a world where everyone is equal, which is met with a call for execution. The father and son then enter into a duel, in which we get one last look at his relationship with Sara before the twisted King Guran is slain.
As the volume closes, Loki makes an unexpected request for Nakaba to hand over Senan to him. Will this request be resolved peacefully, or will it open a last minute rift between our heroes?
With this volume we finally start to approach the end of the series, as the heroes conquer the big “villain,” King Guran himself. Interestingly enough, though, this book takes Guran from being simply a background character that exists purely to antagonize and really makes him someone interesting. It feels weird to get a look at him so late in the series, but it’s nice to see him get a little depth before the end. There are a few other odds and ends of course, but this book is definitely dedicated to him and Sara, so it’s nice to see the story told well. He’s still obviously a villain, but with the backstory provided here his actions make a lot more sense. With the cards now laid down on the table all that’s left is the finale, so hopefully the series can follow through. For now, though, this book remains a surprisingly touching look at a character that had been oddly underdeveloped up until now.
Content Grade: B+
Art Grade: B+
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: April 8th, 2014