episode 18

episode 18 Evade! / Infiltrate!

The Shikimoribito surround Kanbei. They tell him that they cannot take him to the capital, because they follow a code. Everyone is neither enemy nor ally, therefore, any authorities they deal with is a business partner. They keep it like this, otherwise the control for the electricity storage (remember those large batteries?) might be a cause for war.

Honoka tells Kanbei to stop worrying about her sister, but Kanbei still promises that he will let her see her sister. He then asks Honoka to tell the Shikimoribito that he killed the imperial messenger, and that they would understand. He is selling myself.

Ukyo releases, feeds, and meets with the samurai that his father captured during the manhunt for our 7 samurai. Ukyo then bows, and apologizes as the new Kougakyo manager, asking for their forgiveness in taking their pride away. The assembled samurai accept this without question, and ask how they can repay his kindness. Telling them about the success of our friends at Kanna village, he then asks them to act as guards for the other farming villages against the Nobuseri. The current system of the capital, using Nobuseri to threaten villages, will no longer suffice.

The Shikimoribito finally take Kanbei into the capital through an underground waterway. They ask him: even if you harm the capital, what is there to gain? Nothing. They call him foolish.

We get a first glimpse of now Lady Sanae and her three maidens in waiting, with the oldest one among the three named Mizuki. Mizuki asks her to come in from outside. All four loosen up at Sanae’s quarters, finding all the protocol rather stiffling. Mizuki notes how much Sanae changed. Indeed, she looks just a bit jaded. Sanae just says she was mistaken about Lord Amanushi, that he is a kind person. A guard arrives saying Amanushi wants her at an assembly. Despite Mizuki’s efforts to stop it, she agrees to go.

Kanbei is brought up to the main hall of the floating palace to Lord Amanushi. We see that his lordship is confined to a capsule and kept alive with fluids and tubes. Ayamaro is with the assembled audience, still up for trial for the murder of the imperial messenger. Ayamaro is asked if he knows Kanbei, but since in our story they don’t run into each other, he doesn’t know him. Sanae also comes in and is introduced, sitting near Kanbei who keeps looking at her. Amanushi asks her opinion on the samurai, if he is telling the truth. She does not give an answer. Amanushi tells him to stop staring — his body is not a corpse, but the result of the many wars against the samurai. He then says to stop lying, what do you really want? Kanbei tells him to guess. Kanbei is asked again if he knows who the real criminal is. As Kanbei gives no answer, his lordship has no choice but to punish him.

Kanbei suddenly gets loose from the guards, runs to the platform, then tries to attack Amanushi’s capsule, but the capsule is swordproof. As guns are pointed at him, he asks that the women be released in exhcange for the lord’s life, asking for Sanae, the wife of Rikichi of Kanna village. But Sanae walks up to them, and tells Kanbei that she is not going with him. She says that Amanushi needs her, and she loves him, much to Kanbei’s surprise. His lordship explains that Sanae bears his child. Kanbei releases the sword and allows himself to be taken away.

Back in Kanna village, Kirara is arguing with the elder priestess in not being allowed to follow the samurai (As a reminder, Kanbei and Kyuzo have left, and the remaining 4 do have plans to also leave). The elder reminds ther that it’s a war they’re going to. But Kirara says it is her obligation to follow since she brought them. The elder has a good idea of her true motive, and tells her she does not know her true feelings. But Kirara insists that she does. She also knows that it’s a shameful thing, what she feels, but she has pretty much made up her mind. What about the other samurai (Katsu), then ? Kirara says he hasn’t noticed yet. (Girl, that’s what YOU think! ^^)

Kiku and Katsu are at the grave on the hill when Roji and Hei arrive. Kiku grumbles that Roji and Hei already decided to go rescue Sanae and didn’t include him. Hei grins and says that they did add them to their plans, but Katsu was down and Kiku was taken by Nobuseri (meaning they were thinking about the rescue during the second village attack). A little more chiding between them about why Kanbei told them to stay (because Roji and Hei know Kiku and Katsu are eager to go), then Kiku stands up, and tells Katsu they are going. He will just get Masamune to fix his broken sword. Katsu then notes that Masamune may know where the capital is. Rikichi goes to them as well, leaning on a friend and still quite weak, saying he wants go with them. But Katsu says he should stay behind, and promises they will get his wife back.

At the bridge out of the village, Komachi and Kirara catch up to Katsu and Kiku and ask to be brought along. Katsu gives her a sad look, and says he does not want to expose her to the risk. But Kiku, not catching on, says Kirara’s pendulum (the water crystal) might come in handy. It is unsure exactly what he knows, or what Komachi and Okara have told him, but Katsu sadly turns his back on her, and tells her “Don’t let go of my hand.”

The village elders look on, noting that with this move, Kirara might not be water maiden anymore. (I’m guessing, but as water maiden Kirara is probably not allowed to get married.) But it can’t be helped, she’s a woman.

Kyuzo is still quite fine, moving by himself through the desert, also in the direction of the capital.

Mizuki visits Kanbei in prison, and explains that Sanae was kidnapped but says Amanushi is nice. It’s true she has his child, and Mizuki thinks Sanae is just deceiving herself. She also notes that Kanbei is plotting something, and tells him she wants to help. When Kanbei asks about the whereabouts of Honoka’s sister, Mizuki says it’s her, and gives her name.

Holding the newspaper, Ukyo muses that he wants to meet the person who caused trouble for his town, and plans of going to the capital to visit Amanushi.

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