“Don’t mess with the Ishtar Familia” they said, “Don’t draw their attention” they said, and yet unfortunately for poor Bell, because of Freya’s obsession with him, Ishtar has officially made him her next target. So much for avoiding another war! Well, on the flip-side of things, this should provide Bell and Mikoto the perfect excuse to sweep in and save Haruhime like the heroes they are.
That being said, it’s important to remember that in the public’s eye, most people, including Bell aren’t aware of the shit Freya has stirred up to make him grow. But on the other-hand, appears at least some Gods are aware of her interest in him some degree. Among those who are certain of it are Hestia, Ishtar and Hermes, who had rushed to Mia, begging her to send a warning to Freya about Ishtar’s plans.
This week we learned that Ishtar intends to go at war with Freya, but before she does, she needs to kidnap Bell to provoke her, and carry-out the Killing Stone Ritual. Besides the name-sake, there are a lot of reasons to be concerned about it, particularly because of Haruhime’s potential role in this event. It wasn’t a coincidence for Hermes to choose to tip Bell and Mikoto off about the Killing Stone after having heard the friend they intend to rescue so happens to be a Renard. It also doesn’t give me much comfort to see Aisha look uneasy about it as well, considering she appears to have a soft-spot for Haruhime. However the most unsettling part about the ‘Killing Stone’ is the lack of knowledge around it. Not even Hestia has heard of it— unless she’s lying of course. This means coming across information on this stone is probably going to be hard to come by unless you ask the right people. Unfortunately for them, even though Hermes seems to know about how it can be used to some extent (perhaps because he was told the Ishtar Familia has a Renard in their party), he isn’t in the position to reveal all its secrets, especially when it looks like someone is keeping a tabs on him.
And that isn’t the only reason to be concerned about the Ishtar Familia. There are a number of reasons why they are a force to be reckoned with, one of them being responsible for penalizing and dismantling Familias who were suspicious of their members submitting false information to the Guild about their statuses. But as it turns out, the reason why the Guild’s investigation of the Ishtar’s Familia came up with nothing was not because they lied about their stats, but it appears they have a Support who can give them a ‘buff’ (aka: empower them). Considering the individual’s face was hidden, I’m going to assume it’s probably Haruhime who is responsible for this. If it turns out to be her, this would probably be the reason why the Ishtar Familia has kept her off the Guild’s records/database. And on top of that, (thanks to Hermes suggestion) Bell’s and Mikoto’s hopes of raising enough money to buy her out from the brothel may be quashed if Ishtar has no intention of selling her to begin with, which is looking more and more likely to be the case for a variety of reasons.
With the Ishtar Familia targeting Bell for all such petty reasons, Hestia’ Familia will now have a valid reason to pick a fight with them. Of course the main concern is the whole incident being closely kept under wraps, which will put them in a tough spot once again, but hey, might as well roll with it. But boy… it’s going to be a tough fight though, my god. Ishtar’s Familia’s members average level is three, and their Captain: Phyrne Jamil (the creepy one) is a Level 5 Rank 1 Adventurer, and had almost beaten Aiz years ago. Don’t even get started with the buff ups—- OH GOD, I DON’T WANT TO KNOW HOW STRONG PHRYNE IS GOING TO BE IF SHE WERE TO BE BUFFED UP! Bell is already in a pinch with Ishtar’s buff, she got him real good. I hope everyone’s going to be okay, because they already got their hands full with the monsters they were fighting!!!!!
And finally, it was great that we got to learn about Mikoto’s past with Haruhime. What was great about it was how it also shed light on why Mikoto, Ouka and Chigusa are all so close to Takemikazu. Hilariously, he was the one who encouraged them to him Haruhime sneak out so she could have some fun and freedom to drive away her loneliness! Haruhime even likened them to the heroes she read in her favourite stories. Unfortunately for Mikoto, even when she finally found her in the Pleasure District, Haruhime pretended not to know her and ugh, that made my heart hurt so much. She is acting that way because she considers herself filthy and doesn’t feel like she has the right to be saved…GOD DAMN IT HARUHIME, YOU DESERVED TO BE SAVED!