In this episode, we see two Vanadis fight against a black knight, and how blind devotion to duty can sometimes lead you astray from your own principles. Especially if you hold your duty and principles to people and ideals that can be subverted. It’s a theme common in literature and what have you, and Madan no Ou to Vanadis more or less lays it out every episode. Roland isn’t a foil for Tigre, but a version I think, of what Tigre can be if he doesn’t have his head on straight.
Sophie uses her Dragon Tool to erect a barrier stopping the pursuing knights, though Roland breaks through it. Holding him off, she teleports away just as Lord Mashas with a force of 300 attacks Roland’s rear forcing him to give up pursuit.
Roland thinks back to when he went to the palace, that both Duke Thernardier and Ganelon denied him audience with the king, instead pushing him to rid of the ‘insurgent’. He intends to finish his task before going to force his way to the king.
Back at the aid station, the combined forces thank Lord Mashas and Tigre’s condition is stable, but with the fever not going down. Mashas explains that the palace is more or less locked down by the two dukes, but the Prime Minister ushers him into the king’s private chamber, only to see him playing with building blocks. The Prime Minister explains that Tigre needs justifiable cause to involve foreign soldiers, this is why Roland is pursuing him so strongly, and that also the two Dukes had put him up to it.
Asking how he managed to meet with Sophia, he explains that she saved him from ruffians who they didn’t know who had employed them.
Going to Tigre’s tent, the entire camp seems to worry about him, as even allied soldiers are asking how he’s doing. Asking Titta for some time alone with Tigre, she vows to protect those he wants to protect, considering he is hers after all. At a nearby hill, Sophia asks Elen if she is going to use her dragon art against a mere mortal. Vowing to help, Elen states as an envoy, she can’t do that, though Sophia says she’s made her determined, and that she’s taken an interest in Tigre. Elen ends it by saying Tigre is hers.
As the rain falls down on the battlefield, back at Roland’s camp, he mulls over why Tigre would invite foreign soldiers into Brune. His second in command did say that he had heard from other sources that Duke Thernadier had launched a campaign into Alsace while Tigre was away. Asking Roland what they’ll do, he intends to continue as planned, since there is a Zchted army within their borders.
The next day, as Lim and Elen lead the army to battle, Tigre wakes from his fever. Taking his vow, he wonders how he could fight, nor how he could protect them. Walking out into the fog with Titta, they follow the urging of the black bow, all the while Tigre grits through his pain. His bow eventually leads him to a deserted castle that appeared out of nowhere in the fog.
Back at the battle (Battle of Orange), Roland’s plan is to use three squads with flexible team work to whittle down the Silver Meteor Storm’s forces, and it seems to be working as more casualties are being taken by Elen’s combined forces. Meanwhile, back in the mysterious castle in fog, Titta and Tigre stop before a statue of the goddess Tir na Fa, of night, darkness, and death. Asking the statue if she had called him to this place, the goddess answers back after taking control of Titta.
Stating that he had sought power, she tests him by making him show his resolve by shooting Titta. He asks if he doesn’t shoot, would she return Titta to him, though the goddess merely says she’s precious to him. Determined to show his resolve, he still shoots her, although not at a power that would hurt her (only to destroy her clothes). Having passed the test and returning to the field, he races off to the battle.
The battle has changed, the rapid attacks by Roland’s knights have bogged down by Elen and Lim’s tactic of flooding the field with the swollen river’s waters and mucking them up, making the enemy forces easy pickings for their archers. Roland engages Elen and Sophia, who uses their respective dragon arts on him only for him to break free. At this moment, Tigre arrives, shooting Roland from an impressive distance.
Asking for a moment from the Vanadis, Roland asks Tigre if he had hired the army of Zchted into Brune was to protect Alsace, to which Tigre replies affirmatively. Elen says once Duke Thernardier has paid for his crimes and their reward given, they would leave. Inviting him to fight for them, he declines the offer, due to him being a knight of his royal majesty. Intending to strike them down still due to them being insurgents, Tigre shoots a bow intending to protect his people.
Roland strikes at the arrow, still thinking of Tigre as a traitor, though he wonders what drove him to be one. He was given the sword Durandal to protect the people, as a knight of the king. Slicing through the arrow and tossing the trio back, he himself isn’t unscathed from the attack, and unable to move his arms. Noting his own doubts about the whole ordeal, he surrenders to Tigre with half of his order dead. Tigre though is still gravely injured and rests on Elen’s lap as their forces now focus on the true enemy.
Firstly, did another screenshot stitching:
Not a bad episode. A lot of things seem to be glossed over as the show is picking up to catch up to the light novel, though Roland seems to be as I described him earlier. A knight following his liege’s orders to the letter, although unsure of they really are his liege’s orders or an interpretation of it by those between him and the king. The Prime Minister seemed like an enemy at first, but nevertheless he’s merely caught between his duties and personal feelings.
Roland to me is more of a sad character. Torn between his duties as a knight of the king, to protect people, and putting down Tigre. He knows he is a traitor for inviting a foreign army into his homeland, but he knows there are reasons why a man with no ambitions beyond his own land would knowingly invite foreigners in to help in his crusade.
That doubt in his resolve was what caused him not to easily smack aside Tigre’s bow, but to also be drained and defeated by it. Compare this when fighting with the Vanadis, two actual foreigners fighting against him, a defender of the land.
Interesting to note is that Elen seems to be moving away from seeing Tigre as her ‘prisoner’, or rather, is now somewhat accepting he wants him for more than that, starting to solidify the ‘harem’ more or less, with her in the forefront.
She does have a good head on her shoulders, realizing the advantage Roland’s forces had and counteracting it by leading his forces into a quagmire of her construction, before taking them out with volleys of arrows, while at the same time drawing Roland away from his forces that could back him up.
The series is good, solid action with fanservice. Not tremendously amazing, nor is it bad either.