“I see… I was not the only one who was afraid…”
“Haise. Am I… scary?”
“You’re asking… why? Because you are… strong.”
An incredible chapter this week. I’ve had trouble containing my excitement all weekend after seeing some of the raw spoiler images. At long last, the auction is over, but we’ve been left with a couple of massive reveals and developments. The first of those is as regards Haise and Kaneki – the mentality of the former with regards to the latter going forward will be very different from how it’s been up until now. It wasn’t quite a ‘merger’ between the two as per my speculations, but Haise has accepted Kaneki to an extent, and is willing to accommodate his presence. All this time, Kaneki has been pleading for Haise to ‘look at him’ – not (just) so that he can seize the chance to tempt him into the darkness, but because Haise has been getting the wrong idea about him all this time. Before Hinami, he was terrified at the supposedly savage monster who lived the first twenty years of his life. But now, the Kaneki that appears in his mind is just a kid, and this change is a major step for their future relationship going forward. Haise seems to be willing to take requests, too – his bold request to Arima must have been influenced by his inner Kaneki in some way.
And what a request it was. I literally froze when Arima appeared and had his men surround Hinami – and like Hinami herself, I thought she was going to die for sure. It was the worst possible scenario – apart from Kaneki, when has Arima ever spared a ghoul? It’s also debatable whether we can say that what Arima did was ‘sparing’ him. I have a feeling that Arima knows full well that Haise was lying to him, or at least was aware that there was more to it than what he could see – but when he lied, he was still Haise. And that’s what I think Arima was there to check. He’d just finished another operation, and yet he rushed over to check on Haise – out of concern, perhaps, but also definitely in case he started reverting and going on a rampage again. At any rate, it seems pretty radical to let Haise just keep a pet ghoul like that, even if Hinami is most likely willing to live in the house with him and the rest of the Quinx Squad. Or will she be thrown into Cochlea?
My initial prediction for Floppy arriving on the battlefield was that it would be either Rize or Amon, and that they’d help unlock more of Haise’s memories. As the newcomer turned out to be Arima, that little idea was temporarily foiled – until Amon actually did appear, with Kuro at his feet no less! Amon is indeed Floppy, and despite being only featured on a single page, that was just about enough to tell us about his current situation. He is most likely a fellow one-eyed ghoul experiment – but a failed one, assuming that Takizawa and his mentally-broken state counts as a success. Before the auction, Eto told Ayato to ‘finish it’ if Floppy ever came – meaning that Amon isn’t with Aogiri, but instead was with them. But unlike Takizawa, in the face of all the torture he did not descend into madness, and managed to escape. If he’s helping the CCG clean up, it means he’s essentially anti-Aogiri – and the symbolic reversal is thus complete. Amon is now forced to live as a one-eyed ghoul, and is now in the same position Kaneki was in after he experienced his torture. And Haise is forced to live as a human, and is now a First-Class Investigator like Amon if he gets promoted as a result of his ‘distinguished service’ in the auction raid. But seriously, how long has Ishida been planning this for? Look at this!
It’s like ‘Halfway’ all over again! I presume ‘Yasuhisa’ is Kuro, and the absence of Shiro does suggest she’s dead. At least Kuro is alive. Maybe not safe, but alive. Rescue her, Amon! I wonder what Amon thought of Kuro and Shiro when he first found out they were one-eyed ghouls. At the time, their appearance was just to make him believe in the existence of the concept, but I do wonder whether he would have killed them if he had to directly confront them. He is a kind person, but also one very much driven by justice and a hatred for ghouls. Now he’s in the same position they were – but I can’t see him eating humans at all, which is probably why he’s cannibalizing the Aogiri members he defeats. When he meets Haise, the two need to have a nice, long chat.
If we consider this arc as :re’s Hinami arc, the next arc will involve Tsukiyama and his father. There have been parallels – Haise has discovered more about himself like he did at this point in the original series, and Hinami has been ‘rescued’ from certain death at the hands of a scary, white-haired dove. I cannot wait for the impending argument between Hinami and Saiko over onii-chan and Maman.