Cassandra called it, but of course nobody took her seriously. Goodness, somebody please listen to this girl! WHEN SHE HAS BAD OMENS OR RAISES CONCERNS, WHETHER YOU BELIEVE IT OR NOT, THERE’S A GOOD FREAKING CHANCE THOSE SCARY THINGS ARE GOING TO APPEAR!!!!
Bell and the team have finally descended into the Lower Floors, beginning the next phase of their adventure. The Great Falls we were briefly told about last week starts at the 25th and goes down all the way to the 27th Floor. Aisha who has experience with this level has been diligently educating the team on the dangers of the Lower Floors. Seriously, they should count their lucky stars that she invited herself to join in. Having someone mentor them about things to look out for is invaluable, and it’s quickly proving to be the case.
But as one would expect, although the team knows they need to be cautious of the dangerous, they can’t help but feel a bit giddy about the new and invaluable materials they can find on the Lower Levels. It was quite funny how quickly Lili changed her tune one Aisha pointed out the value of the Under Coral and Pearl. There is a lot of innocent excitement, but things quickly turned around once the monsters abruptly appeared, which has given me a jump care both times even though I knew something was bound to pop up. And sure enough, the last ten minutes of the episodes was pretty wild.
Today the team had three dangerous encounters. The first was the horrifying fish that jumped out of the river in attempt to devour Haruhime, which Mikoto successfully fended off. The second was when Mikoto had a too close of call with some whale-eel looking fish monster that came burst out of the walls of the dungeon, and we got see her pull off an insane defensive reflex that was hands down the most badass play of the day. The whole time I was screaming, “EEEKKKK! WHAT THE FUCK! MIKOTO! HOLY SHIT MIKOTO THE REFLEX, GIRL MY GOD!” She certainly shined today, and that was awesome to see!
The third encounter however, the team were not as lucky. They ended up crossing paths with Luvis, who Bell briefly met last week. He is gravely injured with a lost arm. The team found him when he was attempting to escape the horrifying green moss monster (more or less the exact one Cassandra had described), and was almost killed by it right before everyone’s eyes had it not been for Bell successfully pulling its attention away from him. Sure enough, as Aisha said: The monsters on the Lower Levels are an entirely different beast. Bell observed it to be an ‘enhanced species’, which bears the intelligence to read his moves. And Luvis had only barely been able to give them a warning to do whatever they can to avoid getting hit by what can be described as a raining bullets. The piercing damage of those things is nothing to sneeze at, not even the environmental terrain can withstand the flurry of its attack, to which Bell saw his cover getting chipped away.
And while Lili had mused about how much they have spent on their gear in preparation for this expedition, this very instance highlighted just how invaluable it is to spend good money on high quality gear. It would have been impossible for Ouka to shield them all, so the Goliath Robe came in clutch when it came to pulling up a last minute cover. However even if you do have the best equipment, just the smallest margin of error will cost them. We saw Chigusa pay that price dearly when she got clipped in the shoulder. It appears she was not been concealed enough behind Ouka’s shield. Truthfully I wasn’t sure if she was going to be a goner to be honest, especially with the way she was sent out flying into the open where the attack was still flying. But it appears the monster was satisfied with successfully planting yet another parasite into its prey and called it a day with that.
What becomes of Luvis and Chigusa is unclear, but things aren’t looking so hot right now, especially since they are going to have to deal with that invasive seedling parasite hat got lodged into them after the monster had rained what could be compared to bullets at them. Requiring amputation was the first thing that crossed my mind, but they have bigger problems given that it was lodged into her shoulder not her arm. It is also suggested that Luvis had lost his arm from this very attack, as the seedling parasite seems to be emerging from his gaping wound. Perhaps Cassandra will have some form of knowledge of how to deal with it. Though if anyone is going to know anything, it’s probably going to be Aisha. That said, I would like to see Luvis survive, but the odds are sure against him at the moment. (We also don’t know whether he was partnered up with Dormul, or anyone else for that matter. If so, they may very well already be dead.)
This week also emphasized a lot of what’s at stake, as well as the consequences that could follow should Bell fall or be separated from the group. There is definitely an ominous omen being allude to the future, with the talks of the danger of falling off the edges of the cliffs and rivers that leads straight down into the 26th Floor. Let’s be real, someone is bound to get caught up in that given they heavy allusion to the rapid currents of the rivers– though both cases are suggested if you get caught up in either, you’re good as dead. I can imagine there’s a chance for survival in this, though it will require some creativity and a miracle if it’s anything to go by. And frankly, and given their unfortunate track record of being forced to go DEEPER into the dungeon just to survive, I imagine in this case we may very well see just that, or the opposite this time, where they will need to get the hell out of the depths where they didn’t initially plan to be, and get to the higher floors ASAP. Any deeper, and well… uh… Not sure how the survival rate would be with that…
Overall, although the episode had a slot start, the it was still a really solid one that finished on quite a dramatic note. The first half was mostly being just conversations between the characters, but also seeing Bell acknowledge how he needs to embrace being a hypocrite in order achieve his goals. It goes without saying that it is certainly a complicated matter, but I understand how it’s a necessity, as Bell can’t afford to being indecisive or uncertain, or else it could cost him and/or a comrade’s life.
For similar reasons, I enjoyed the conversation Lili had with Daphne, however that as was another instance that gave me an awful foreboding of what we may see happen in the future. Daphne talked about how the cruel reality of the Lower Levels will require Lili in the worst case scenarios to have to make difficult and potentially heartless decisions. It could be we may very well see that as soon as next week if things don’t improve for Luvis. The best they could possibly do at the moment is taken him back to their base camp on the 24th Floor. Even if they were able to resolve the seedling parasite problem and heal him to some extent, enough for him to live, they probably wouldn’t be able to escort him back to the surface themselves, and with only one arm, there’s no telling if he could get back on his own either– at least not without a rescue party to come to their disposal.
Last but not least, I must say I really appreciate the detail behind the reason why the team is seen wearing blue this time round. It turns out the uniform is not just for show, but it’s because it’s equipped with Undine Cloth to help protect against water-based attacks, as well as learning about the purpose of damaging the dungeon’s terrain in order to force it to focus on repairing itself rather than spawning monsters.
Looking forward to the next one!