At the second seal Kidoumaru asks Tsuchigumo to give his hostage to Hagoromo-Gitsune as an offering but he refuses, asking him where the old Tengu is. And at this point the Tengu’s replacement Minagoroshi-Jizou has just received the Maou’s Hammer.
Just waiting on a decent raw for screencaps for my post on the next episode, otherwise I would have combined it with this one.
Back at the sixth seal Keijourou manages to save Kubinashi at the last moment and decides to smack some sense into him, to make him realise that he’ll die if he wants to fight alone and as partners, they should fight together like they did in the past as well. Alongside this Akifusa and Shokera exchange blow after blow to no result, and as the building shakes Aotabou decides to do something. Reflecting on his past and the orphans he took care of as he blocks a decisive blow from Shokera, reasoning that he has something he needs to protect.
With Keijourou at his side Kubinashi tears through Ibaraki Douji’s underlings with ease, remembering his past as a Youkai who went about indiscriminately slaughtering other Youkai and thinking that he didn’t need anyone. Yet when he met Rihan he made him realise what he had in Keijourou and what true strength is, declaring such to her. However as they begin to push Ibaraki Douji back they make one mistake, damaging the grave marker on his face, a memento of his father that makes him snap and lose himself in his blood lust. Back at the Keikain household, more details of Aotabou’s past are revealed as he fights the angelic Shokera, of how he took care of those orphans to repent for his past crimes.
However when faced with Rikuo’s friends being carted off as offerings to Hagoromo-Gitsune, he’s reminded of how he returned one day to find the orphans being attacked by brigands, at the sight of which he tore them apart with his bare hands. And so he punches back Shokera and takes to fighting alongside Akifusa to push his assault back. Back at the sixth seal however things are dire, with Kubinashi not only being faced by a bloodthirsty Ibaraki Douji but also Kidoumaru as well, but Yura and Hidemoto’s group manage to arrive just in time to save them and replant the seal. Aside from that, unfortunately Rikuo’s training isn’t going anywhere, and growing impatient, the Great Tengu brings his blade down.
Another fairly good episode, there was lots of action with two fights running simultaneously and we even got to see Aotabou step up and take action as well. Aside from that there was actually a good deal of development for him, Kubinashi, and by relation Keijourou, the only problem is how uneventful Rikuo’s training is.
Which if anything has its strengths and its weaknesses, at first it may seem as if it’s being dragged out and given everything that’s going on, now just isn’t the time to be wasting time with training that isn’t going anywhere. Yet on the other side it also means that Rikuo is actually having trouble grasping Gyuuki’s message, unable to determine just what he means by accepting his human side as well as his Youkai side. Something which actually would have been quite miraculous if he could instantly grasp the meaning of it all. That said however, there really wasn’t that much time spent on it in this episode and we’ll actually be seeing it progress in the next episode, so it’s kind of forgivable. However it appears that the Great Tengu is growing impatient, implying that he may have motives of his own.
But anyway, if the development that we saw Kubinashi get in the last episode hadn’t been enough, what he got in this episode was great, going further by revealing the full extent to his partnership with Keijourou as well as just where his loyalty towards Rihan is rooted. Being based in his past of going around indiscrimately slaughtering Youkai for revenge, and that it was Rihan who made him realise just how much Keijourou really meant to him, what true strength really was, and made him change his ways. Not to mention how sweet a moment it was to see him effectively confess this to her. In all managing to pull him out of the slump that Rikuo’s defeat had thrown him into. And I must admit that it was fairly nice to see an Omake segment for before all of this when Kubinashi still had his neck, a somewhat bittersweet glimpse at a trio of characters destined to have a tragic end.
If anything however without a doubt this really felt like Aotabou’s episode, the development we saw him get turned him from a fairly badass bro sort of character, to a one with a dark and troubled past. With his backstory being one of conflict, of an individual who teetered on a knife-edge, struggling to leave his past of violence behind in order to repent. Which from the very start would prove impossible for him, as while he wasn’t proud of it he fell into his old ways. Even so however he still failed to protect those around him then so it was interesting to see how his bout with the angelic Shokera panned out, if anything his past failure actually drove him to succeed this time around. And it was nice to see how Rikuo’s friends somehow managed to remind him of his conviction. Actually giving them an incredibly minor minor role this season.