Three days after the assault, Mashiro is hiding out in a group of Windbloom refugees. Because there are soldiers searching for her, she is deathly afraid and longs for someone to save her. In another part of the desert, Natsuki wakes up in a camp beside Nao and Yamada. Yamada informs her that Nagi had seized control of Windbloom after “liberating” it from Schwarz. And because he then drove them all out of the city, all of the poor people are now refugees. In the Airies Republic, Haruka is fuming mad at Nagi, but Yukino has her stopped by smashing a rock onto her head. Back at Natsuki and Nao’s camp, Miyu makes her appearance. Holding her hand at Natsuki’s neck and keeping Nao at bay with some deadly coin shooting, Miyu asks them where Arika is. But it seems that in the aftermath of the explosion, Natsuki doesn’t know Arika’s whereabouts, though they do know that Nina is safe. Natsuki feels that it’s her mistake for what happened.
Nina is actually still in Windbloom, and is trying to comfort a bedridden Sergay. She is a lot more talkative and tries to act happy, but her feelings of pain come out when her father attempts to apologize. Underneath the castle, John Smith and Nagi are watching their scientists work on the Harmonium. Unfortunately for them, they’re having a hard time opening up Fumi’s mausoleum. As for the song, the conductor, and the protector: Nagi seems to think that Mashiro has the third part of the lyrics (Erstin provided the second) and that Arika would be the conductor, since she’s the real queen according to Sergay.
Mashiro is on the move with the refugees who are headed for the Airies Republic. The people around her can’t stop criticizing her and their words remind her again that she may not be the real princess. Mashiro collapses in the sand, but the girl Mimi offers her some water. At Natsuki’s camp, Miyu tells that she is the Multiple Intelligential Yggdrasil Unit, a.k.a. MIYU. She then jumps off into the darkness. The refugees have also set up camp in the night, and Mimi tells Mashiro the story of her father. He was a baker who lost his store to a government road construction project, causing him to sink to debt and gambling before he died. Mimi feels that the queen didn’t care about them at all, and thus has developed a deep hatred. Mashiro’s stomach growls, so Mimi brings her some of the same stuff she tried to feed Mashiro the last time they met. This time, Mashiro realizes that the food tastes delicious and starts crying as a result.
The refugees suddenly start to get excited because they’ve apparently caught someone who served the queen. The angry mob has cornered her on a cliff, and Mashiro identifies the person as none other than Aoi. The crowd hates her and the queen, and tries to make Aoi tell them where Mashiro is. At that moment, Aoi recognizes her former master in the crowd. However, she says that she doesn’t know where Mashiro is, but even if she did, she wouldn’t tell them. Mashiro can not find the words to speak out to save Aoi, nor can she make her feet move forward. To the crowd’s delight and Mashiro’s shock, Aoi decides to fall backwards off the cliff. Having been completely helpless, Mashiro runs away crying and eventually finds herself wandering the desert. She then collapses and mutters “Arika.” Somewhere in a valley of caves, Arika is carrying water when she turns around as if her name were called.

I had expected this episode to be kind of slow, but it ended up being really good. Let’s run through the major plot points…
Miyu the Mysterious – She’s able to handle both Natsuki and Nao (though they’re w/o Robes), and once again introduces herself as the Multiple Intelligential Yggdrasil Unit. We still don’t know what her connection with Arika is, but she’s very concerned. On top of that, she seems to know Natsuki’s GEM title as well as Nina’s.
Sulking Sergay – Guess he wasn’t so invincible after all. Bedridden and bandages isn’t the type of image you project to the girls, tsk tsk.
The Harmonium – If Nagi is indeed right (and I’m not saying that he necessarily is), then Mashiro is the key to the song and Arika is the key to the conductor. That means that Nina must be the protector? That’s assuming that those three make up the three parts, which seems pretty likely at this point. Which part they play depends on who’s really the princess and who’s really Rena’s daughter.
Mashiro the Exile – And so the girl finally learns how the other half lives. I don’t really feel sympathetic that she’s suffering because she did used to be such a brat, as long as she’s learning something from the experience, which she definitely is. Of course, what really opens her eyes is…
Nooooo!!!!! Aoi!!!!!!! – This has so much more impact on me than Erstin’s death. Seeing Aoi cornered like that, Mashiro remembers how loyal Aoi was; then, in a final act of devotion, Aoi sacrifices herself for the sake of her queen. What makes the scene even better is the music piece they chose to accompany such a powerful scene. As for whether or not Aoi’s really dead, I find it hard to believe that she is, especially with the threat of a reset looming over us lol. Maybe by some miracle she was saved during the fall, but in any case, I don’t think she’s truly dead (at least until I see a body).
Arika and Aswald – It sure seems like Arika is living with the Aswald now. Those caves are very similar to the ones Midori was watching over back in episode 14. I’m very curious how Arika (and Mikoto) ended up there.

It’s kind of hard to tell what next episode is about because the preview shows different shots of almost the entire cast. From it, I’d speculate that maybe Tomoe is going to break Shizuru out of jail, maybe Chie is going to get really pissed if she learns about Aoi, and maybe we’re finally going to learn something more about Midori and Aswald.

Closing Thought: After watching Otome, I lose all motivation to watch any other shows. Nothing else can compare…


  1. I fail to see how they can realistically “resurrect” Aoi here. In Mai HiME they had some funny excuse via the pillar’s life energy, but here? If they do it without at least a token excuse, they destroy their franchise.

    No, I suspect that this time, it’s for real. And damn, what a powerful scene.

  2. Its actually best that Sergay be with Nina, he has a lot of explaining to do with her and to try to set things straight between her and Arika. Now that things have past she should be more open to listening to blowing her top again, I wonder if she regrets what shes done… the subed version can’t get here fast enough *crosses fingers”

  3. They killed Aoi? Oh, dear. :/

    Well, at least she was loyal. But killing maids… oi. I don’t think Erstin’s death did as much for me as Aoi’s did here – the latter got slashed by Nina, while the former.. well, she was a lot less able to protect herself or her queen, and so her death here, for me, had more impact as she wasn’t killed by anything but herself, and she was defending the queen the only way she could – by removing herself so that a) nobody could use her reactions to recognize Mashiro, and b) so that the crowd’s bloodlust would be satiated.

  4. Oh my … Aoi dead???
    My heart almost refused to function after reading that statement.

    Yeah, let’s all hope that she somehow gets saved… Don’t really like her staying dead.

  5. What the hell happen?… All went bang! and suddenly were out in the middle of the desert! Aoi dead too! Arika’s with a different group and Mashiro decided it’s a good time to go desert wandering….

    Two dead good guys, two episodes… Kinda like Mai Hime… but less brutal…

    But like Mai Hime, will all go well for them in the end?

    BlackValley Necromancer
  6. It does leave it open for Aoi to survive. She falls into a dark pit off the cliff anyway, so it is possible. And yeah, it does remind me of Scryed, makes you wonder how the characters will get back together again.

  7. If Aoi should be rescued by some convenient miracle, it won’t be Chie. That cliff was clearly so steep that a fall is deadly, and Chie was shown in Garderobe in thr preview.

    No, I really do believe that this time, there’a s high chance for Aoi being dead and STAYING dead. After seeing the state her queen was in, her struggle to step forward for her, she gave her life to protect the girl she loved and to provide the last service to her – this is very much different to the “forced” deaths of HiME. A deus ex machina or reset would kinda belittle all this.

    I guess it’s all about the ED. If this accursed piece disappears and is replaced with something more appropriate…

  8. If anyone saves her It will likely be Miyu (who thinks she can find out where Arika might be) or Mai… but I think Miyu will be the more likely person… If she’s saved at all…


  9. i just can believe this.. Mashiro is gonna feel this right down to her gut… im sure MaSHiRo will have a much diffrent attutude from this point on in the series, damn Aoi.. i hope your not really dead.. 🙁
    btw… Nina seems back to normal.. still I cant wait till she and Arika see each other… not to mention once Arika sees her sponser/love of her life .. Sergay POOR MAN .. got hurt kinda baD. Natsuki oh my Natsuki you are simply Hilarious by all means.. that face is Priceless i tell you..

    R.I.P Aoi
    i hope ypu come back for Chie/MaShiro
    pleads to Sunrise for her returm no matter how unrealistic it is.

  10. T_T sad episode….poor Aoi. I loved the new piece of music during that scene. I knew that she was going to die though since Erstin wasn’t in the opening and neither was she. At the point, I say there’s little hope for Chie, Shiho, and the corals… Although her sacrifice was for Mashiro’s sake, Mashiro will blame the entire thing on herself. But, it’s strange although Arika only had a little bit of screentime in this episode, she showed no signs of being upset or hurt by what happened, even though everybody else was upset about it. Either she hit her head and forgotten everything (highly doubt it) or her sanity is seriously damaged in that she acts happy no matter what happens. Nevertheless, she was acting bizarrely for someone who’s friend just died and other friend went psycho.

  11. wait, is Aoi really dead? I mean her death isn’t confirmed is it? Isn’t there a small chance of survival or ressurection? They can’t kill off a maid character, it’s inhumane!!!

  12. For some reason, I strongly believe that ‘a miracle anime type save a day’ will make aoi still alive. I have to agree base on truth here that she could have died now. But they make her falling scene ‘possible’ for her to come back. Let’s just hope she did’t died here, cause a reset from green spark can’t use with a pure death isn’t it?

  13. OMG Aoi is dead!! :/
    Totally unexpected, I just hope that the end of this series would be like Mai Hime, I just hope!!!!
    But…man….the whole thing….this is unexpected!! I screamed when Aoi started to fall!!! AARGGHHHH!!

  14. i think aoi is gonna be saved by miyu.. thats the only way i can think of aoi being saved unless she herself is some type of an otome and materializes and saves herself…:S which i dont think is possible sice she need a master to do that and she isnt a pillar….again.. poor aoi-chan…

  15. You know Im actually hoping that Aoi is dead and stays dead. Not because I hate her or anything but it would move the series away from the “reset” and miracle save the day type of thing. That was my only complaint about Hime, that everything that happened was undone to easily and all those death scenes were rendered meanginless.

  16. Basically in Mai Hime she was an android built by the Searrs company to protect Alyssa from the Himes or whatever else. In one of the Hime specials I think it said something about her being based on Human DNA or some shit, so she is kinda half humanish, but not really.

    But yeh in Hime she was an Android, and its possible that this is the exact same Miyu that was in Hime if the two worlds connect.

  17. Has it been said anywhere when they arrived on this world and how long it had been since they left Earth?

    Looking at all the things popping up with Miyu and the references to Childs… as well as to a black power that was supposed to have been sealed being awakened….

    The Omega
  18. i got a crazy thought.. it doesn’t affect the story i guess… but i wonder if this series can be thought of as thousands of years in the future of Mai-HiME. Mankind experiment with fake HiME evolved to a level like those Otome. Some colony leave Earth, soemthing happen, forced to land/crash on this planet. After hundreds/thousands more years…. technology are lost. Some recovered technology restored capability to summon Slave, Child (like in Midori’s case) and robes. Miyu is from the MIYU series of android since Mai-HiME who might have been around for a long time. Maybe that’s why she sees Arika like they way she sees Alyssa in Mai-HiME.
    Anyway… I’m just entertaining myself with some random crazy thoughts… Pay no serious heed. An old man’s rumbling.

    Sanjiyan Unkara
  19. If Miyu is protecting Arika and knows about the gems and Childs, it means Arika probaly the descendents of Alyssa from Earth. Still don’t know what the ‘blue hime star’ is. Probably an orbiting satellite of mass destruction?

    avex mode
  20. I haven’t watched ep 18 as yet but all I have to say is I agree with the reviewer’s closing thoughts.

    Mai-Hime was good but it did not really make such an impact as in Mai-Otome. I think this was because Akane and Kazuya thing happened very early in the show, and there wasn’t enough character development for the viewers to actually ‘bond’ with the Akane and Kazuya before the 1st death scene. Another thing was, in Mai-Hime, the deaths were those close to the Himes but this time Aoi was someone ‘non-related’ to the Master or Meister.

    Sunrise took the time this time round to slowly develop each character and build up the verious plots. Some said this was a waste of valuable episode time like ep 15. I personally felt that ep 15 was a good ep for the viewers to really relate to the characters. Without all these episode fillers, I don’t think the impact of the current deaths would have been this ‘terrible’ for the viewers.

    I think Sunrise can and should finish this series off in 26 eps. How many episode can a fight/war/dramatic fight scene[s] take before it makes the story stale?

    If MIYU does save Aoi, well and good!

    Ignore me if I am wrong. I was very much affected by this series since ep 6 or 7 and just want an ending to the current agony, hopefully a good ending!
    ps. Anyone seen a figurine of Akane Soir anywhere?

  21. Indeed on the closing statement… after watching this…everything else (anime series) does not seem important… I sure hope we have another season of Mai…. An alternate universe every year is fine by me… I do feel sorry for Mashiro… It’s not her fault she was brought up that way, but she sure is paying a terrible price for it…. You don’t blame the kids, it’s their guardians or parents who are at fault…. dare I say it … even Aoi’s fault….

  22. Wow…I was kind of shock that Sunrise kill off Aoi.BUt maybe,i think she might be alive.Probably MIYU
    will save her or probably not.It did happen in the dessert though.So I suspect either someone save her(MIYU) or she manages to survive the fall or the worst.Assured death.Chie might go berserk when she find out and things can get even worse if Chie blames on Mashiro and attack her?!!Who knows what happen next !!!

  23. Well looks like Nina isn’t to happy how things turned out but looking at the previews for the next episode seems like she doesn’t give a darn in the end. /sigh is it me or does Nina seem to be behaving like Shin from GSD… its comming to the point I’m going to be routing for Ninas death if it comes to that and she doesn’t come to her senses and crawl her way out of the dark side.

    If Mashiro dies in the desert I guess that means Arika is good as dead as well, but of course we all know its not to come to that. The pact / link between them could posibly lead Arika to Mashiro, would kind of make sence to be able to find your other half… and the fact Arika kind of heard Mashiro’s plea does kind of lend credence to that.

    Next ep seems like Nagi has become the new headmaster to the Otome school… hhhhmmm can we say “Nagi’s storm trooper squad of Otemes” since we know hes an Emperor Palpatine want a be.

  24. mm… damn… Nao is funny, she had so much screentime in the first half of the eps ^^
    more damn… Aoi is possibly dead
    does the next eps jump a couple of years later? it was called like fateful 17 year old O_O does this mean its like…. 3 years later maybe? or is it just gonna be about midori who i recalled claimed to be 17 years old in mai hime O_o?

  25. Yeah I think the next episode is going to be about Midori. Episode 6 of Mai Hime was called Buring 17 year old and it was about Midori as well. About Aoi, I thought the scene was very well done. The montage fit better than when Erstin died.

  26. especially that song!! the eye contact with the tears… the hair in the air….and then her fall backwards… it was VERY well done …i havent seen a better death in anime than this one… it was beautifull


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