「嘘と真実」 (Uso to Shinjitsu)
“Lies and Truths”
Gauche or Noir? The conclusion of the last episode left me fairly convinced Noir was pretending to be Gauche, but I’m not so sure anymore when he saved Lag without anybody realizing. There were a lot of indications that he put up an act to fool Garrid and Valentine so that he can return to Reverse and allow Lag to escape, such as his insistence not to use a shindanjuu that may have revealed his true intentions. What his actions didn’t tell us is which side he’s leaning towards, nor if that was a clever way of infiltrating Reverse and rediscovering who he is.
The one thing I took away is that he’s clearly conflicted with the memories he recovered from Lag’s Letter Bullet, even though he hid it very well with his expressionless face. There’s no doubt Gauche/Noir puts up a good poker face, so much that Roda isn’t even sure who he truly is anymore, and he even claimed he was only pretending to like Sylvette’s disgusting tasting soup so that his cover wasn’t blown. However, my gut feeling tells me that at least the soup part was a lie, either in the sense that he actually likes it, or knows that it’s bad yet still likes it because Sylvette made it. Noir’s speech didn’t falter during his response, but his hesitation responding to Lag spoke volumes to me.
At this point, I gather Roda’s not even sure who she’s dealing with, as the look she gave Noir at the end made it seem like she felt bad about his decision to abandon his happy life as Gauche. These recent episodes have shown Roda’s character in a drastically different light, suggesting that her loyalty lies with Noir first and foremost, so I’d even go so far as saying that if Noir decided to be Gauche again while keeping her as his dingo, she would happily abandon all activities with Reverse and stay by his side. That’s actually what I was secretly hoping would happen in the previous episode given all the signs that it might. After being teased a bit with the idea, I’m really looking forward to the day that happens. (It better happen!)
In terms of the overall story, the most welcome development is Largo finally catching on to the fact that Garrard and Valentine are Reverse spies. They’ve been moving freely about the Bee Hive far too long (going all the way back to episode five), and I was starting to wonder if they would ever be exposed for who they truly are. It was bad enough that the Letter Bees go about their work without any knowledge of all the conspiracies going on within Akatsuki, so it was just insult to injury to see those two continue to deceive Lag and the others right to their faces. Now that their cover’s been blown, it opens the way to some further plot progression that deals with them. Jiggy Pepper gave me a good taste of that here, as his name instills fear even in the likes two “Bees” working in the capital. Evidently, he’s too badass even for the bad guys. All that reiterated to me is how the Bees should pull out all the big guns (i.e. Jiggy) and take the fight to Reverse.