Kicking off our final story arc is Yukine working in shop with Daikoku. Yukine is working to pay off the money he stole over the past few…weeks? Which presumably means there was way more than we saw, since he left the charity money on the ground the one time we saw.
Speaking of paying back, Kofuku reminds Hiyori that she has a debt to pay. Twice now she’s helped Hiyori bail Yato out of a predicament, which by her estimations comes to 10million yen. …Kofuku suggests Hiyori gets into porn. Oh I love you, Kofuku, destroying people’s lives no matter how you try to help.
Well, it’s a visit to Tenjin’s now. He notes he’s surprised to see Yukine still, after the danger Yato put himself through. Yato says it was part of his plan, and personally I like the idea of Yato being a pragmatic kami than this whole “father” bullshit. It isn’t enough to say Yato wants to invest in Yukine, to see him reach his full potential, because he naturally believes in him? We have to tack silly paternal bonds onto it? Okay okay, cultural identity and all that. I still think it’s silly.
Yato also thanks Mayu, and Tenjin even admits that Mayu is extremely tough after being trained by Yato.
One of Tenjin’s regalia, Miyu, is missing. Mayu tells Hiyori and Yukine privately that it’s because she stung Tenjin. It seems just being introduced to the idea of Yukine’s crisis was enough to make her contemplate her own lost life, and she stung Tenjin in a moment, it seems she wanted to be a teacher, or something. Or at least it was a prayer regarding becoming a teacher that moved her so, which may explain how she came to serve Tenjin in the first place.
Mayu explains that as far-shore creatures, Regalia are prone to want to cross over. It makes them very vulnerable to temptation and regret, which is why they must be vigilant and like water, never allowing things to bother them.
Or, you can see this as I do, that with Regalia being banished for the single mistake, that the kami are lacking in their ability to wield truly powerful regalia. As was established in episode 5, Regalia powers are based on negative emotions. How strange, then, that those regalia most apt in those powers are dismissed, probably compounding their despair, and possibly even ending in a loss of a good Regalia. At least Yato seems to understand that Regalia need to COPE with their lives as undead. Because Mayu directly tells Yukine, “Don’t let it bother you, or you’ll hurt Yato”. What? That’s not processing anything, that’s living in denial forever. Being generous, this would make most Regalia the kinds of people for whom “the truth just isn’t good enough”, if we want to spin this positively.
And it’s this difference in attitude that pisses me off. Should Regalia let negativity slide off them? Absolutely. Of course, of course that is the only way for them to survive as pure being. But there is a huge difference between letting things that bother you slide off, forgiveness if you will, and putting your hands over your ears saying “NOTHING BAD HAPPENED!” I really loathe this point about how Regalia are treated in this universe. Perhaps that is the point. But it’s doing so to such a degree that I might be considering Nora the hero of this show before the end.
Yato confides he doesn’t know how to fix Hiyori. Tenjin tells him to cut her ties with him, as that’s when this all started.
Serves me right. I gave Yato credit for being lonely and knowing this, but not wanting to lose his friend. Turns out he was just dumb.
…Hiyori in a puppy hoody…excuse me…I have, uh, things…that need…attending to. She’s going to a attend Tenjin’s shrine for New Year’s, and in one of their more adorable jobs, Yukine and Yato are cleaning a dog-house. Like literally, one of those rich-people dog houses with heating and everything. But at the festival, Hiyori catches a glimpse of Yato. Only, we see Yato still at the job. Yes…you know what this means…
IT’S A TRAP!
Rabo, Nora’s (or rather, Rabo names her Reiki) little attendant from a few episodes ago is here. He’s stalling Yato with phantoms to test his skills.
Nora, or Reiki, confronts Hiyori. It seems she isn’t fond of Hiyori messing with her scheme, which it seems was to cause Yato to revoke Yukine’s name. Nora releases the hounds, and Hiyori runs away, knowing she’s no match for them in her vulnerable phantom state.
One thing I will praise here, it is extremely difficult to discern Reiki’s intentions. The best bet? The new plan…is the old plan. Only very wonderfully masked with a beguilement that impresses even the most jaded. Reiki’s goal seems to be to bond with Yato again. She absconds Hiyori for making Yato “weak”, and she only laments that Yukine wasn’t released from his contract, not anything about Yato specifically. This while she has been pushing Rabo to Yato’s direction, telling Hiyori that confrontation between the two (Rabo is a new god of calamity, it seems) is inevitable.
So this is, probably,
Nora’s Reiki’s plan. To push a new, powerful enemy onto Yato in the hopes he gives in to using her. But she can’t well let Yato die, meaning she probably isn’t so much “in league” with Rabo, as she is manipulating a far more powerful entity than herself, otherwise she’d just have him hold back until Yato gave in. But to remove the thing that makes him weak…well…
Yato was too much of a pussy to do it, so Reiki cuts Hiyori’s ties to Yato.
This episode was a pretty big shift. It was nice to see Yato and Yukine back to their Episode 5 dynamic. I enjoyed the pair liking each other, but as very different people. And they still give each other a hard time, but it’s much more buddy-comedy than bitter.