「私も一緒に」 (Watashi mo Issho ni)
“I’m With You”
Oh now that hit the spot. And I mean really hit the spot. As if hearing the questions being voiced for several weeks, 86 finally laid bare some of the answers to our noted voids, and while not everything was revealed here, enough has come out to start expecting plenty. Lena and her fellow Alba are in for a world of hurt – and the majority don’t even know it’s coming.
The first biggie to appear this week is Legion and its staying power. I think few honestly believed that two-year lifespan to be accurate, and lo and behold that’s actually the case. Just not in the manner you might expect. Machine perseverance through biological augmentation? It ain’t The Matrix (the original neural network premise for The Matrix mind you), but it’ll do alright. Besides appealing to my love of dark sci-fi this concept also has the added benefit of instilling a serious degree of dread. The 86ers fighting on the front aren’t just at risk of an early grave, they also stand a good chance of being subsumed into the very gestalt consciousness they’re actively trying to stop. It’s the sort of tension all war stories need to develop any major staying power and it is tension helped especially by Magnolia’s leadership bringing the situation about through their incredibly ironic decisions. The Legion may have been created by San Magnolia’s enemy, but it is San Magnolia who could very well provide the Legion with immortality.
Outside of machines turning cyborg, however, the other leading tidbit was in the hidden side of Para-RAID. While the voices of the dead blaring over the airwaves have an explanation in the Legion’s use of deceased neurological tissue, it does succinctly explain why earlier handlers decided to either quit or blow their brains out. Sure, might only be audio, but some things can quickly go from uncanny to downright disturbing under the right conditions (As Kaie clearly did for Lena). The one unknown though is how Shin and the others are picking up on the voices; the indication is that it’s an artefact of the Para-RAID system (and god knows how heavily the cost of this system has been teased), but the discussion leaves open the potential for some quirky power on the part of Shin which lets him pick up on such vestiges. I seriously hope that’s not actually the case to keep this story reasonably grounded (and avoid the pitfall of magical abilities), but until we learn more it’s probably good to keep expectations on the down low.
After all, there’s one hell of a backstory regarding Shin and his brother yet to come out, and you best be sure it’ll explain quite a bit about where this story is going.