Tales of the Abyss – 11
As the Tartarus takes the group by sea to see Emperor Peony, it suddenly experiences an engine problem. This forces them to head to the nearest port for repairs, and it takes them to the city of Keterburg. Upon arrival, Jade informs the stationed troops of his identity and leads the group to go see the governor Osborne. Jade is originally from here, so he knows his way around, and he brings everyone past Emperor Peony’s old home. Peony’s father had a lot of enemies, so Peony was kept here during his childhood. The group eventually arrives at the governor’s mansion, and they’re all surprised to learn that Nephry Osborne is actually Jade’s younger sister. After they explain the situation to her, she agrees to help get the Tartarus ready again and puts them up in a hotel. She also wishes to speak with Luke privately, though Luke first heads to the hotel with the others. There, the group discusses how Jade and Dist were both from this city and went to the same private school when they were young. Dist had also been the person who made it possible for Anise’s stuffed toy to grow bigger in response to her fonom frequency, and she doesn’t consider him a bad person.
Later that night, Luke goes back to see Nephry, and due to how he’s a replica, she wants to tell him why her brother created fomicry. Jade had been a child genius, and one time when her doll got broken, he had used fomicry to make her a replica of it. However, Jade was also a terror as a child and had enjoyed cruelly killing harmless creatures because he didn’t understand the death of living things. His teacher Nebilim was the one who started guiding him in the right direction, but when Nebilim died, he returned back to how he was. Nephry thinks that Jade was doing frightening things with Dist, and she wants Luke to stop him. When Luke returns to the hotel, he finds Jade waiting for him and takes the chance to ask Jade about what his sister said. Jade explains that he had actually killed Nebilim, and he recounts how she had been able to use the Seventh Fonom. He had been determined to figure out how he could use it as well, but that led to the accident that caused her death.
Wanting to save her, Jade had tried to use fomicry to create a replica of her, but it was a failure and went berserk. Nevertheless, he and Dist had vowed to create a perfect replica, and Jade joined the military. His necromancer name comes from how he pulled replica information out of the dead on the battlefield. Luke can understand Jade’s feelings, but he questions why the production of replicas of living things is prohibited, so Jade explains how close he came to dying from failed experiments and how Peony had talked some sense into him. Jade also admits that he realized that replicas don’t have memories of the past, so it wouldn’t have really been Nebilim, and what he really wanted was her forgiveness. As the conversation draws to a close, Luke thanks Jade for telling him all this and feels a little closer to him. The next day, the group reboards the repaired Tartarus and sets out again.
This episode was pretty much entirely devoted to Jade – probably because Peony is appearing next week, and this was as good a time as any to give Jade and Dist some backstory. Whereas Dist was portrayed as just a crybaby and misunderstood loner, Jade felt a lot more complex as a character with his desire for knowledge and lack of understanding of death. Plus, the way he tried to create a replica of his dying teacher and failed with all those human attempts reminded me of Fullmetal Alchemist‘s rules against human transmutation. That always ends up being something you don’t wanna mess with.
I question though why they even bothered hiding Peony’s face if they’re just going to show him in the preview for next week. Surely there’s not some surprise there too, though I guess he does look rather evil with that smile of his at the end of the episode. It’s akin to the smile of a certain evil someone from today’s episode of Index. It also looks like Sync might be finally taking control of Guy next week. I’m sure Luke won’t be too happy about that.