「ジギー・ペッパーへの手紙」 (Jigii Peppaa he no Tegami)
“The Letter to Jiggy Pepper”
Jiggy Pepper is a lot cooler than his name will have you believe. Also, Lag has decided to give a name to his shindan after all this time. “Red Needle” 「赤針」 in homage to Gauche’s Black Needle.
Continuing from last time, Nelli makes her way towards the Bifrost bridge. When she gets there though, she soon realizes that not only is it not there for some reason, but that Gate Keeper Signal already knows she’s not Lag Seeing. Having to act accordingly, Signal sends a huge lizard at Nelli but Lag and Niche arrive just in time to hold it at bay. In the process, Lag unexpectedly fires a shindan from his bare hand, releasing all the memories from Nello’s letter. From those memories, Nelli quickly learns that her little brother encouraged Jiggy to become a Letter Bee and that his real regret was not being able to grow up and protect her. Lloyd shows up later to explain how a shindan gun is only a means to releasing a shindan and that Lag’s one appears to be able to sense what’s burdening people’s hearts. Hearing this, Nelli apologizes and returns Lag’s crossing permit, but the ambitious youngster decides to try clear up her misconception of Jiggy further.
Having seen how Jiggy may have been responsible for the church’s construction, Lag takes Nelli there and fires several shindans in hopes of uncovering some of Jiggy’s memories. Nothing seems to react though and he ends up overexerting himself in the process, after which Nelli reveals that the bell is the only thing from Yuusari. One shot later and everyone soon learns that Jiggy had personally paid for creation of the extremely expensive bell, so that Nelli and Nello would have a landmark in the sky to guide them towards their aspirations. With everything finally cleared up, Lag offers to deliver Nello’s letter anyway, but Nelli decides to save up for the postage and send it herself. Off in the distance somewhere, Jiggy hears the Kyrie bell sound after making a delivery, and chooses to ignore Lloyd’s pickup request for Niche.
I’m still a bit puzzled how this series keeps me so captivated even though very little seems to happen each episode. As such, I can hardly consider this poor pacing, especially when I only notice this while I’m sitting here, looking back on the episode, and writing about what happened. While thinking of potential reasons, the one that stands out the most in my mind is the story’s continual flashbacks to the past and tying them in with the present. Every time one of Lag’s shindans goes off, we’re given a glimpse at a cornerstone to the current segment of the story. Couple in the fact that Lag only uncovers sorrowful memories and you have the driving force behind the emotional aspect of the series. In this episode alone, we saw one for Nello, one for Gauche, and one for Jiggy. In juxtaposition to that, we have very amiable characters in Niche and Steak, whose spirited selves elevate the emotional downpour and round out the “package” as a whole. (Pun intended.)
Back to the actual story, there were a few revelations this time around both for us and the characters. For Lloyd and Signal, they’re surprised to find out that Lag has an Amber Spirit as his left eye, in addition to having tamed the highly sought after child of Maka. For us, it’s the first time we hear Lloyd addressed as “Master”, which the preview shows is because he’s the master of the Bee Hive. Next time, it looks like we’ll be introduced to another Letter Bee as well — Zazie.