The Tower of Druaga ~the Aegis of Uruk~ – 11
With an enormous wave of monsters blocking any chance of escape from the Tower’s top floor, Neeba’s group and Jil’s group have no choice but to face the giant Druaga now lurking around. Before engaging the monster, Fatina tries to get Neeba to say that his intention with all this is only to get rich, and when he confirms that it is, the Succubus appears behind him – still unseen by everyone but him – and accuses him of lying. Regardless, Neeba’s plan to bring down Druaga involves having Fatina and Utu distract the monster while he uses a set of three legendary Void Arrows on it. The first arrow successfully brings down Druaga’s protective barrier, but before Neeba can fire the second arrow to finish Druaga off, Pazuz attacks him because Pazuz wants Druaga for himself. Neeba is still able to fire off the second arrow, however it only hits one of Druaga’s arms, and Neeba then gets blown out of position by Pazuz’s wind magic, losing the third and final arrow in the process. Seeing Druaga turn his attention to Utu and Fatina, Jil decides to go help, but Kaaya stops him. She admits to liking the part of him that can’t leave others to die like this, however she also reminds him of his promise to take her to the top of the Tower. Though Jil has a hard time with this decision, he still chooses to go help, and the others in his group – led by Ahmey – decide to join him.
Jil and company manage to save Fatina and Utu, but they can’t do any significant damage to Druaga. Just as Jil is about to give up, Ahmey tells him to face Druaga headfirst while she launches an attack on the monster’s head from behind. She gets all the way onto Druaga’s back and is about to activate her weapon when one of Druaga’s spikes suddenly pierces through her from behind. Everyone is shocked to see her fall lifelessly to the ground, and it takes Kelb and Ethana to grab Ahmey’s body and lead everyone away to safety. They get to a safe spot, but it’s too late for Ahmey – even Kaaya’s magic can’t save her. Knowing that she doesn’t have much time left, Ahmey thanks Coopa for helping them get this far, tells Melt to be nice to Coopa once in a while, advises that Kaaya not carry her burden by herself, and expresses her faith in Jil’s ability to come through in one way or another. She’s admits says that the journey was fun and that she was glad to have met everyone, and in her final breaths, she sees her dead lover and agrees to be his wife. After Ahmey passes away, Kelb, Ethana, Utu, and Fatina discuss what to do. Their situation is worse now because Druaga’s protective barrier has been restored, and they don’t have any Void Arrows to bring it down again – at least, they think that they don’t until Kaaya reveals that the stone slab she got from the old tower will work. Even with this though, they still don’t think they can defeat Druaga.
Meanwhile, Pazuz begins his attack on Druaga by opening up the four caskets his slaves had dragged up here for him. Before they can finish opening though, Neeba reappears and kills Pazuz with arrows to the chest and the forehead, and Druaga proceeds to destroy the caskets. Back at the safe spot, Jil blames himself for Ahmey’s death and realizes that he’s only a foolish hero wannabe. Ki appears beside him and directs him to look at his friends who are all hurt and all feeling that they might die. She makes Jil think again about what he wants to do, and after remembering how Ahmey had told him not to give up, Jil realizes that he wants to be the shield that protects everyone. This inspires him to rally everyone to fight once more, and he vows not to let anyone die this time.
I’ve got mixed feelings about this episode, most of them of the worrisome nature. For starters, I thought they did a pretty good job handling Ahmey’s death. It could have been better if we had gotten more character development for her (i.e. if they had switched out the Coopa episode for an Ahmey episode), but it was still a pretty touching scene. My main problem with this episode is that they spent so much time on her death and on the fight to defeat Druaga that all of the critical questions of the series still have yet to be answered. In fact, Pazuz’s death already eliminates one avenue of answers – I’m still not quite sure what he was after or what was in those caskets, and now it looks like we may never find out. And with the fight with Druaga not over yet, I’m worried that next week’s finale will either be incredibly rushed so that they can cover everything, or it’ll just avoid explaining some of the mysteries behind the Succubus and Ki and Kaaya’s and Neeba’s goals, and that’s arguably worse. Obviously we can’t pass judgment on this until after seeing the finale, but let’s just say that I’m not getting my hopes up for it.