The Tower of Druaga ~the Sword of Uruk~ – 08
Jil and company have arrived in the previously water-filled area and decide to set up camp. While the others are catching fish, Fatina tells Jil that she likes him even though she know that he still has feelings for Kaaya because it’s part of what she calls her rehabilitation. Melt then discovers the underwater door to the next area, and the entire group gets pulled through. Soon after they arrive though, they realize that one of the knights, Specula Ex Machina, is there as well, so Jil decides to act as a decoy while everyone else gets away. Jil manages to distract the robotic knight long enough before hiding himself, and he then runs into Neeba. After Jil explains how he came with Ki, he asks about Kaaya, so Neeba suggests that she might not want to see him. It comes up during the conversation that seven months have passed, and this surprises Neeba because he and Kaaya have only been in the Mythical Tower for three weeks. He thus realizes that the flow of time is different inside here, and that’s how they caught up so easily.
Jil and Neeba are then found by Specula Ex Machina, and while they’re running away, Jil pushes Neeba to tell him his objective in all this. Neeba claims that it’s to kill Gilgamesh and revive the old Sumar Empire, and that makes Jil think that it’s related to Neeba’s mother. In any case, Neeba thinks that they should keep running from Specula Ex Machina, but Jil doesn’t want to. Neeba knows that it’s because of how their father fled in the face of the enemy, however Jil refuses to believe that, so Neeba points out that Jil passed through the House of the Dead and could have met their father. Neeba feels that he can’t be Jil’s comrade because Jil continues to lie to himself, but for the time being, they have to fight together. Meanwhile, Fatina and the others have discovered where Neeba left a sick Kaaya, and they’re unable to wake her. While the others watch over Kaaya, Henaro sneaks off and activates the light on her staff, connecting her with the knights Sword of Blood and Tear of Ice.
Jil and Neeba work together to try to bring down Specula Ex Machina, but Neeba gets attacked by Gremica and her assistant Acra in the middle of this. It turns out that Gremica used to be Neeba’s teacher, and she accuses him of having a different goal now than reviving the Sumar Empire. She proves this by having Acra cast a spell around them to reveal the Succubus that’s been following Neeba, but Neeba still claims that he’s on this journey on his own free will. Neeba is able to end the fight between them by hitting Acra in the chest with an arrow, and he frees Ki before returning to help Jil defeat Specula Ex Machina. Having seen Neeba fighting Gremica, Jil knows now that what Neeba said earlier about his objective was a lie, so Neeba admits is that he’s actually driven by anger. He remembers how their father had returned home injured back when they were young and how their father had wanted to see Jil. When Neeba had tried to convince Jil that their father was a coward, he had been beaten and left outside in the rain to be found by Gremica.
Despite all he went through after that, Neeba’s doubts didn’t disappear, and he wondered about the existence of something predetermining their fates. He doesn’t like the idea of them being swung around by the whims of the gods, and he reveals that he’s after the power that was the reason the Tower of Druaga was built 80 years ago. Meanwhile, in Meskia, Ethana has received a secret message from Kelb, and she heads out to lead an uprising. Back in the Mythical Tower, Jil arrives at the rendezvous point and finds Utu, Melt, and Fatina all knocked out.
Well, a lot of stuff got explained this episode, but I’m still not entirely clear on if Neeba is just pissed off with life, the universe, and everything for his fate or what the Succubus wants. I did find it interesting though that they pointed out how time passes by differently inside the Tower, so that turns out to be the real reason Jil and company caught up so quickly, not because Neeba and Kaaya stuck around with Ahmey for a long time like I had thought after last episode.
In any case, I found the episode to be decent overall, but the fight between Neeba and Gremica was sorely lacking, and I thought they tried too hard to make something out of Acra dying. It’s hard to feel anything for such a minor character. It also looks like Henaro has finally betrayed the group since she’s not among the unconscious there at the end and had been acting suspicious all episode. The question is what she plans to do with Sword of Blood and Tear of Ice now and if she took Kaaya with her. The armor in the preview resembles that of the other Gilgamesh, so he might already have his hands on her.