OP2: 「Crystal Energy」 by 栗林みな実 (Kuribayashi Minami)
*picks jaw off ground* This fast paced song is really growing on me, and both the song and the scene of Arika, Nina, and Mashiro sitting in the ruins reminds me of SEED. Of course the highlights of the new OP are all of the spoilerish preview shots we get. That includes Mai, Natsuki, and Nao in uniform, along with Mashiro probably joining Midori’s group and Arika having to fight Nina.
Arika is able to defeat all of her foes, and so she and Nina advance to the fight against two Pearls. Meanwhile, across the city black letters arrive to several people. While Arika and Nina are training for the battle, Chie and Tomoe watch on. Chie knows about what that Tomoe has done and tells her to stop. Erstin overhears the two of them talking and runs off in surprise. She tries to tell Nina and Arika about it later, but Nina and Arika are enjoying themselves too much, so she decides not to bring it up. During this time, Nagi asks for Rad and Midori’s cooperation, but they turn him down.
With Miya gone,, Youko is using amniotic fluid to re-crystallize her GEM. In a ceremony sometime after, Nao is chosen to be the next of the Five Pillars. On top of that, Shiho is selected to become the Otome of Florence and Chie will be the subordinate of General Armitage (Haruka). As to be expected, Nao expresses her dissatisfaction to Nina and Arika about being chosen to be a Pillar, but Miss Maria catches her badmouthing Shinso-sama. In class, Erstin watches as Tomoe offers to return a book for Irina to Youko. Tomoe takes the vial of corrosive amniotic fluid from the lab and is about to pour it on an unaware Arika. However, Erstin, who was warned by Youko, pushes Arika out of the way, but Erstin herself ends up suffering burns to the leg.
Although she saw Tomoe do it, Erstin doesn’t implicate her classmate. She recovers fairly quickly thanks to her nanomachines and is out that night with Arika when they hear something. Nina is singing the lullaby and remembering when Sergay first found her – she had pointed a gun at him. She hears two more voices, Arika’s and Erstin’s, join in after she finishes. Erstin comments that it’s strange that the same song would have different lyrics. After she and Arika fool around for a bit, Nina notices that Arika has embroidered a handkerchief for her benefactor, though she made a mistake and stitched in “With Sanks.” The girls bond, and they all promise to become Meister Otome. Sergay later gets a letter with the handkerchief enclosed, which has been fixed to say “With Thanks.”
The day of the graduation battle finally comes. Arika sees Sergay with Nina before the fight, and comments rudely to him that she’s going to become a Meistar Otome for the sake of her benefactor, but then runs off with tears in her eyes. Before the battle actually starts, Mashiro wants to unveil her new castle. However, she soon sees that the design is now what was planned. In fact, John Smith is with one of the recipients of the black letter on a platform at the top of the castle. They activate the center piece, a cannon, and blow a hole through a mountain on the other side of town. At the same time, an armada of Slaves comes flying in over the very shocked spectators.
Alright, I really have to gush now about how good the story is. There are just so many factors at work now – some stuff is finally beginning to come together and others are just starting.
Like I said, great episode with huge developments and tons of juicy story.