After an entire episode of pain, we were all spoiled with lots of heart-warming scenes between Miyo and Kiyoka! AHHH SO FLUFFYYYYYYYY!!! This was such a wholesome episode, and I just loved seeing these two being able to just interact in peace and be freaking adorable around each other. Kiyoka’s cute little stares that makes Miyo all flustered, or Kiyoka being a worry-wort and sticking around close by to make sure Miyo’s doing okay with her lessons, and himself getting flustered when his sister teases him about it!
Now that Miyo and Kiyoka have been officially engaged (and thank god they didn’t have to deal with the Saimori side again to get it done), Miyo wanted to take etiquette lessons again. So Kiyoka called in his elder sister Hazuki to come over and be her teacher. Hazuki is like the polar opposite of her brother, she’s the lively type. I can see why Kiyoka was a bit worried she might be a bit overbearing for Miyo, but the two are hitting it off just fine. She has a lot of knowledge, and as a graduate from the girls’ school she is ready to share all of it with Miyo who didn’t get the chance to experience that. She will be helping Miyo reach her first goal of preparing for a party in two months time.
Interestingly we were also able to learn that it was Kiyoka’s father who had sent Miyo as a potential candidate to be Kiyoka’s bride (as he was responsible for bombarding him with applications in the first place). Of course this worried Miyo that he might’ve thought it would be Kaya, but Kiyoka just responded with how he’d turn him into charcoal if he were to protest against their marriage. Goes to show that Kiyoka has no intention of letting his family have any final say in this. He chose Miyo, and that is that.
While we’re on the subject of charcoal and families, both the Saimori and Tatsuishi households have respectively lost a combination of wealth and power. As I expected, none of this was made public and of course no one was officially criminalized for their actions, however everyone was respectively punished in different ways, though some arguably better than others. Some may feel like Shinchi and Kanako were effectively given a slap on the wrist, but the real consequences of their actions was losing everything. Their estate was completely burned down, they have to move into their “less than extravagant” villa and their “princess” Kaya is now being sent off to work as a servant under a strict household where won’t be tolerating her spoiled brat behaviour, that’s for sure. Similarly to Kaya, Mamoru been knocked down from his pedestal as he has been removed as the Tatsuishi family head. Now the eldest son Kazushi (who helped Koji out) has become the new head and agreed to the conditions to serve under the Kudo’s family command. This is the most fitting punishment because this is exactly what Tatsuishi (and the Emperor) were trying to avoid in the first place.
As for Koji, he’s done with being weak and useless, he has decided to resume his training so he could become stronger. While he didn’t get punished (nor did he really need to be), his cowardice however made him lose his privilege to continue his unfinished confession to Miyo. When he tried to bring it up again, she chose to feign ignorance by saying she has forgotten about it. Miyo has already chosen Kiyoka, and Koji’s confession wasn’t going to change things, especially when she is more than ready to leave everything from the past behind. So I’m proud of her for doing that.
But if there was one thing I could change, it would be the extended Kaya scene between her and Koji that took place right in the middle of Miyo and Kiyoka exploring the remains of the Saimori estate. I feel like that plug was entirely unnecessary and served as a very abrupt interruption to Miyo making her way to the remains of her mother’s tree. I’m not entirely sure if they did that for the sake of ‘filling in the gaps’ so that they could cleanly end the episode where it did (and boy was it a fantastic way to do it). I also wondered if it was done in attempts to help sell the merchandise of Kaya and Koji, because Kaya and Koji are the two other characters who got merchandise in this series— which I will say was arguably a very questionable decision considering how much viewers absolutely loathe Kaya, I don’t think anyone wants any goods involving her whatsoever. I think people would have preferred to have Yurie and Hazuki, or heck even Godo merchandise over those two. That said, Miyo and Kiyoka have PLENTY of adorable merchandise, and I hope to get my hands on some of them, but I digress.
Apart from the fluff interactions and resolution of the first arc, I loved the way they built up to it at the end of the episode, highlighting the great disturbance that is coming their way.
Since Miyo’s arrival to Kiyoka’s place, we’ve seen her be subjected to horrible nightmares. At first I had thought it was because of her trauma, but once Kiyoka had observed remnants of one’s gift at work, it soon became clear she was being targeted– by who, we weren’t entirely sure, but now we and Kiyoka know for certain that it’s most likely the Usuba’s clans doing– especially since we have seen one express that they intend to retrieve Miyo.
Interestingly we also saw two seals break today. In the beginning of the episode, it was the remains of the sakura tree, and at the end of the episode it as this big rock that shattered. I felt this was deliberate arrangement to parallel the significance of what happened to the sakura tree. When Miyo touched it, she sensed something that startled her, and then suddenly a fragment of the tree snapped off (just like the rock did) before disintegrating into nothingness. Based on that, it would be fair to believe that Miyo’s mother had applied some sort of seal to the tree, but it’s unclear whether Miyo has finally reached the conditions for it to be broken, or it broke as result of the power disruption between Mamoru and Kiyoka, or perhaps as early as it had been cut down. Either way, it appears the tree may be possibly related to the reason why Miyo had never been able to develop her own powers, and why her mother said in her dream last week alluding that she actually does.
As for the rock that blew up at the end of the episode, boy just when the Saimori and Tatsushi have finally been dealt with, there are certainly bigger problems coming their way. It was refereed to as the seal closing off the tomb known as “the Grave”. When it broke, it revealed some horrifying looking monsters that bear an uncanny resemblance to what Miyo saw in her nightmares. Either way, it’s part of a series of disturbances coming their way, as not only will they have to deal with that, but also the imminent arrival of the Usuba family who seeks to retrieve Miyo. It appears it was a matter of receiving permission from the Emperor to finally act, which seems to suggest that was the main reason why they were unable to take Miyo under this wing sooner. Either way, it’s pretty brazen of them to want to swoop in now after she’s formally engaged with Kiyoka. Of course a part of this is supported by the Emperor’s in desperate attempt to prevent the Kudo family from potentially obtaining even more power. Either way, I can’t imagine this is going to fly well with either Miyo and Kiyoka.