Chasing Maria’s Spirit?
The format of this week’s Shin Sekai Yori was slightly different this week, interspersing the midsummer Bon festival with the actions a week earlier, as the humans meet to discuss the destruction of the Giant Hornet Army.
The Robber Fly coalition is victorious, but the humans don’t know how. There were no weapons remaining on the battlefield, there were no indications of what was used. Additionally, the Giant Hornet arrows weren’t damaged or broken. Even more, the bodies were all mutilated. Kiroumaru seems to have escaped, but nobody knows where he is.
The council meets
So how did the Robber Fly win? There were no signs of bombs, or any other clues. Saki’s mother is asked if there is information from the library that could explain it, and she also wonders if they found one of the false minoshiros and extracted information from that. But none of the clues match. The only other suggestion is that PK was used by the Robber Fly. But who could do it? Have they developed their own powers? Or is it Maria and Mamoru? Tomiko is adamant that noone from their town or any other town would do such a thing, so Shisei asks about them. But Tomiko is equally adamant that the bones they were provided matched Maria and Mamoru – size, age, gender, dental records, even DNA. Yet Shisei is still wary, since they were provided that evidence by the same individual who he believes has masterminded the Robber Fly atrocity: Yakomaru.
A festival memory of Maria and Saki
Meanwhile, Saki is still haunted by the memory of Maria and Mamoru, as well as the faceless boy that she now knows was their companion in Group One. And at the summer festival, she sees, for a fleeting instant, Maria ahead of her, and then all three of them in the field. Is it their spirits , now that she’s finally heard that their deaths were confirmed, like Satoru says? I’m inclined to agree with Satoru, especially since she sees Shun, even if she can’t remember who he is. But she definitely remembers Maria, even though Tomiko’s statements about Maria and Mamoru’s remains seem to have convinced her that they are actually dead.
Back during the council, the decision is final; the Robber Fly will be eradicated. But Hiromi also asks that the festival be postponed until after the situation has stabilized. But she is shouted down by Koufuu, whose contempt for the bakenezumi apparently knows no bounds. The festival will go as planned, and the “Wildlife Protection” team is scheduled to be finished by then. And while they haven’t shown up by the time the festival goes on, there seems to be much merriment.
Until people start dying, and bombs start going off.
The Robber Fly have launched an attack on the humans in their town. Is this, as Satoru surmises, a last ditch effort to strike back before they are eradicated? Or has the Wildlife Disposal unit been destroyed itself? Multiple methods of attack are used against the humans who have holed up in the town square under a barrier erected by Shisei. Poison gas, which is blown back into the woods by Koufuu and Shisei. An army of soldiers outside the barrier, who are compelled to turn their weapons on their comrades by Koufuu. But as he gets too careless, he is shot by infiltrators inside the barrier. Acting calmly but obviously enraged, Shisei wipes out the rest of the bakenezumi force that he can see.
As the town tries to regroup, Saki’s mother and father are still alive, as is Tomiko. But Hiromi, who wanted to delay the festival, has been killed. Did this wipe out all of the remaining Robber Fly? Or was this just an army sent after the humans? It’s certain the conflict isn’t over, and Tomiko’s anger towards Yakomaru betrays how the whole colony feels.
There were a couple of other things that were learned this epsiode. That Shisei’s eyes, under his mask, are double pupil’d. And that Maria truly loved Saki, and was thinking of marrying her. This last is in a cryptic message from 14 year old Maria at the end. It’s narrated as if it was the current time but Maria is past Maria. And she talks about how they couldn’t have children because they’re both women. It reinforces the idea that Maria loved Saki the most, but felt obligated to Mamoru. Whether this was pity or affection isn’t sure.
But this episode also asked more questions. Who is the PK user who assisted the Robber Fly army? Were those really Maria and Mamoru’s bones? There’s been some speculation that perhaps it is their child. I don’t think the timing quite works out for this, since at most it’s 12 years ago, and even if Maria and Mamoru got busy immediately, such a child would only be a bit over 11. And that’s not really enough time for PK to manifest itself, based on earlier in the show. Even if it did, the control would be weak . If the time frame was 15 years, I’d be more inclined to believe it. But based on Future Saki’s voiceover from before, Maria is definitely involved somehow.
Also, the death of Koufuu raises another question: What was the light that fired from his eyes to the heavens? And why was there the image of a woman in it? To me it was reminiscent of the destruction of the Library by Rijin, something that was made to activate the Death Feedback. Was Koufuu a human? Or is he something else? We never see the fatal wound, hidden by the taiko drum, but we saw bullet wounds in the bakenezumi. So it’s not that the show doesn’t show those, just with Koufuu. And no other humans who died that night had the same thing happen.
No appearance by Yakomaru this time, but I think Tomiko wants to rip him limb from limb. The bloodthirst by the humans seemed a little ugly to me as Shisei and Koufuu were fighting them. And the retribution may be terrible to witness. I don’t think the Robber Fly will go down as easily as they think.
All the screenshots: