And thus we arrive at the obligatory beach episode.
Four months had passed since that harrowing patrol flight. Slowly but surely the trainees are starting to become better pilots and marksmen. Cutting to both classes after a strenuous run in full ruck, Fausto asks why they are being trained like they were, only to be told that ground combat is also part of their duties as pilots. Cue obligatory swimsuit transformation scene from the teachers (Juan Rodrigo Bandereas of Class B and Sonia Perez of Class A) and the training continues. Afterwards, they are dismissed, with Bandereas more or less telling the students to have some fun on the beach.
With the uptight nobles leaving, not wanting to have any fun, Claire and the others enjoy themselves, and Ariel even manages to get Ignacio to actually stay with the group for an extended period of time.
Claire and Kal-el get some time alone together, and after getting lost in the woods getting firewood, Claire trips and takes Kal-el down with him. Cue romantic stare in which they are about to kiss. And then the Resident Advisor creeps in on em and leads em back. Did I mention she was creepy? Ruining the glorious moment. Claire runs off embarrassed, but as we see later, it was just an incident where she is reminded of her past.
With the night falling, Claire goes home, not wanting to be escorted by Kal-el due to the earlier reminder of her past. Ignacio leaves too, since he did not come to Isla for fun and games.
Later that evening, the true reason for Kal-el to be on Isla is revealed. The Revolutionary Government had always known Karl La Hire (Kal-el) was alive but had not acted on it all. Unwilling to become a political tool for the new government, they propose he join the Isla project, if anything, to get closer to Nina Viento for some spot of revenge.
The next day, the Isla government notes that they’ve made it to the area of the Holy Spring, and lament the fact the Isla project was more or less created to shove off the people who were of no use to the new Republic. At the same time, Claire remembers her past.
She had the power to call forth the wind since she was young. Her mother, forced by her circumstances to sell young Claire to moneylenders, was paraded through the town (intentionally or not) with the townsfolk calling her a witch. Understandably this was too much to bare for such a child, and in a fit of rage, ravaged the town with a tornado. A priest from the show’s religion finds her afterwards and asks her to join them, most likely referring to the Rebellion. With her help the Rebellion tears down an empire on its last legs, but when she sees Kal-el’s face when he is presented before her, she realized how much of a sinner she was. Later as she is older, Admiral Luis proposes to take her to the Isla project, somewhere where she can be useful and where they need her.
Cut back to the pair, as a small tournament is set up between Class A and Class B. Claire had been avoiding Kal-el for a while, and when put together, that only compound’s Claire’s anxiety. Her piloting is rather sloppy during the fight against Fausto, with her classmates noticing how they weren’t like they normally performed. They note that they often were the best because they could connect with each other the best. Kal-el, not realizing why she’s undergoing some stress, still reassure her that he wants to fly the same skies as her. With that reaffirming of their love for each other, they easily get back into the groove, and shoot down Fausto’s plane (with paintball rounds). Flying back to land, planes of an unknown origin arrive and are shot down by the Knights. The Isla government realizes it’s the rumoured defenders of the Holy Spring, the Sky Clan, and while dismissing them as forgotten barbarians, just now have found their new source of problems.
Nothing out of the ordinary, I cringed at the beach episode part but absolutely love the series dedicating a good deal of the second half of the episode on background. It seems like the next episode might be focused on Ignacio so I look forward to his reminisces. The dynamic between Kal-el and Claire seems to be sped up, but as is normally the case with condensing Light Novels into a single-season anime, there will be aspects of the plot that will be forgotten or changed. I am liking no doubt that there is an implication that they are going out, according to Fausto’s comment about them breaking up, and with Claire increasingly becoming comfortable with the Class B (commoners), it shows she as a young noblewoman is quite comfortable with the group. So much so that the group can notice her anxiety and dissonance when flying with Kal-el.
So the relationship is there, just given in hints and starts rather than smoothly being relayed to the viewer.