「勇者の仲間にならなかったお姫様」 (Yuusha no Nakama ni Naranakatta Ohime-sama)
“The Princess Who Didn’t Join the Hero’s Party”
Rather than focus on the dark, gritty world of running a pharmacy, this week’s Slow Life gives us more background on who Rit is and what her relationship with Red was like back when he was an adventurer. But because it’s been so long since they last met, Rit looks at him with fonder eyes as she maps out an agenda to shack up with him.
A BUNDLE OF PERSONALITY
It was amusing to see how little time it took for Rit to put in the work and figure out the logistics of getting him to agree to both work with him and stay in his home. Between mapping out a schedule to help him allocate his time properly at the pharmacy and building different household utilities they can both use like bathes or furniture, she really had this planned out before she came up to him with the proposal.
Even if she comes off far too strong around Red, Rit showed herself to be an interesting character with the experiences she’s had along the way. It was great to see the second episode serving as a flashback episode where we learned about Rit, how she had come to know Red through his adventuring, and what she has to contend with as her kingdom’s princess.
THE WEIGHT OF RESPONSIBILITY
While she also fancies herself as a B-Rank Adventurer, her status as a Loggervian princess provides a unique way of seeing what the world is like through her eyes. Because she feels like she has to live up to her country’s expectations, she tries her hardest to make sure they are as empowered as they can be with their skepticism towards being controlled as a surrogate state for any hero that throws them a bone.
Because of this, it takes her a long time to grow accustomed to Red aside from his really tasty cookies. Rit and Red’s pre-established relationship was fun to watch because of how much of it was built on them egging each other on. Rit bluntly doesn’t see the need to compromise the kingdom’s security to give more authority to the heroes while Red is concerned about them possibly falling if they didn’t pitch in. Their synergy was interesting enough that it makes sense that they would come to admire each other by the time the future comes around.
But Rit’s connection to Red also goes beyond just clever rapport considering how Red was there while she was going through a crisis of faith. Although she is enraged when she learned that Red couldn’t trust his hard work to be enough for Ruti’s party, Rit is on the same boat as him about the responsibilities that she’s saddled with.
After seeing the body count of Shisandan’s conquest through her kingdom, Rit had a difficult time disassociating herself from the carnage. Knowing that the emotional connections she’s made with her master and the royal troops were severed with their deaths was far too much for her to process. As an empath, I’d can see why it would be horrifying to process seeing people who you personally knew, had conversations with, and cracked jokes with as a pile of corpses.
On top of being forced to be responsible for the lives of her closest friends and mentors, she also has to deal with the little authority she does have to call the shots and gauge whether to join the heroes or not now that she’s had first-hand experience on the types of threats her kingdom is going through.
TWO MINDS THINK ALIKE
One of the few threads from this episode that I’d be interested in seeing fleshed out as the series goes forward is also the state of Rit’s family. While she has combat-related responsibilities under her belt, having all eyes on her also ended up being detrimental because she knew she’d only be resented if she took on a leadership role above her younger brother.
Rit wanted to leave and become a B-Rank Adventurer to avoid family drama with his younger brother being overshadowed in favor of her, but I can see this detail being interlinked with Red’s insecurities. With the two putting aside their pasts in favor of a slow-life, they are able to bond through their insecurities about feeling like they couldn’t live up to the expectations they placed on themselves.
STEERING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION
Similarly, I’m curious about what’ll happen with Ruti’s party. With the episode’s last scene, it’s become all the more apparent that the rest of the party is on a completely different wavelength than their resident crap-stirrer Ares. As he makes a whole song-and-dance about replacing Red with Tisse, the rest of the party would rather focus on getting acquainted with Tisse than humor any of Ares’ complaining.
On top of this, Ruti doesn’t hide her resentment for Ares’ abuse of power when she instructs Tisse to only follow her authority. I can see losing Red as a sore spot for Ruti considering how his absence is clear-cut evidence that she is losing control over her party, and that she had no say on whether Red was worth keeping in the party. She was already starting to zone out during her bloody warpath to exterminate the demon king’s troops, but I’d imagine the knowledge that Ares was directly involved in kicking her brother out of the party would cause her to become even more disassociated in the process.