Inori no Ougi (祈りの奥義)
By the end of the last episode Schrieke was able to put a shield to protect the church up, now its just time to defeat the big bad guy off this round.
For a start its great that Schrieke reached out to the priest not in anger but to point out that the spirits and elements that she’s used to put the barrier up are the same that they talk about in their holy books. Its a good way to get through to people like the priest who takes less turning then Farnese did.
In fact this episode was really her episode.
Whilst a Ogre appeared and Guts had to fight that because it was throwing things at the church that the barrier didn’t prevent and then a Kelpie showed up which Serpico decided to go fight she didn’t just stand there protected behind a shield but went in search for a way to help. She did so by letting the spirit that used to be worshipped on the hill, the Lady of the Water or something like that, possess her.
Problem is the Lady hadn’t been awakened in so long that the power was overwhelming, not only that but Schierke’s mind wasn’t in the right place. Guts told her, much to her annoyance, that doing something just because you’ve been told to is weakness and whilst she might have took it the wrong way I believe he meant that it makes you weak because you don’t have the conviction you need to do what needs to be done.
Its Farnese that saves the day, keeping a cool head and doing as she’s told to bring Schrieke back to her senses, unfortunately both Farnese and Casca are washed away but at least the Trolls, Ogre and Kelpie are gone.
One thing I guess Schrieke has over Farnese is that she admits her mistakes very fast. She knows that she’s done wrong by the time this is all over. Losing herself to the power isn’t just because the Lady was strong but because she was weak because knowledge had blinded her.
Whilst she knows that the people have turned their back on the spirits and gone with one religion that blinds their minds to the world around them she doesn’t realise the truth of the matter. The truth that the church forces people to come to their side, one of the villagers says his Great-Grandfather had told him about the spirit and that villager himself was old so it isn’t even THESE villagers that turned their back on the spirit. The moment she explains calmly to them all of this even the priest agrees that they need a shrine to the lady in the village.
She hated the villagers for something that they never did. Something they couldn’t help. Her knowledge was that the world has turned its back on something ancient and beautiful, the truth is never that simple.
So she has a lot of soul searching to do and whilst she STILL doesn’t think that Guts is her Destiny his speech to her about relaxing kind of proves it does. Just like Isidro and Farnese he can see behind the armour to the incomplete person underneath and offers reassurance and support. Its a strange thing to expect from a character like Guts which is probably why she still can’t see that he’s her destiny but Guts see’s things as they are and says it how it is and won’t be turned for anyone but where he lacks knowledge he doesn’t mind being taught it. Whether he cares for it is another thing altogether.
Once again though it might be a victory for the group but a victory that comes with a cost and another side adventure to get their comrades back.