QUOTE (FMAobsessed @ May 24 2009, 05:41 PM)
I do want closure with them. A lot of people have said that they wouldn't mind speculating about them. But I have speculated long enough.
I think Arakawa will give us closure. But not in the way we want.
Stray Dog - here
Fultac does not express his love for Kilka until the worst happens. He may have called her useless or clumsy, but he always loved her and watched out for her. Lots of little things proved this. And while it started out as a selfish desire to feel superior, it ended with both sides fully expressing and being aware of their love for each other.
It reminds me of Royai because they first were just 'apprentice' and 'daughter of the alchemist'. Then from there, hidden under their military orders and and professional relationship, are deep feelings for each other. It may have started out as something simple as wanting to be comforting to the daughter of your teacher [at the funeral he gave her his card], but look where it is now. XD
It also makes me think that Royai is based a little on them. if Riza was killed, I could easily see Mustang crying out about why she was so loyal, and why she would throw her life away for him even though he was at the better advantage, just like the last scene with Fultac and Kilka together; though Royai is a romantic kind of love, and Fultac and Kilka was more about maternal love.
LONG summary of Souten no Koumori. If you just want to read it, click here
Henpukumaru - 12-13 <--- The thing is, both of them in the beginning look like 5 years apart. Then they look like they're both 8, and yeah...it's hard to pinpoint their exact age range with the way it's drawn. The way it's drawn, it looks like they are the same age by the middle-end of the story. The chronology suggests they are about two years apart. I'm going to say they are at least one year apart.
Chiyozuru - 11-13
Henpukumaru, a young teenager with a bat-shaped birthmark under her left eye, is found half-dead in a cold river in spring. He is found by a young prince, Chiyozuru, and his servants, and taken back to the Isokawa mansion, where she is taken care of. Chiyozuru wants Henpukumaru to stay with them, and he goes along with it.
While taking a hot bath, he remarks that of all places, she is in the home of the enemy of Tadahide Isokawa (from the name of the mansion, you can guess that it was taken over my Chiyozuru's family. He starts to get out of the bath as Chiyozuru runs in to join him, only it is just revealed the Henpukumaru is, in fact, a 'she' (Chiyo makes a very LOL face).
Chiyozuru is surprised and taken aback by her true gender, saying that she confused him with her clothes and name. Henpukumaru juts in with that she is not the kind of person who should be staying at that kind of place, and she thanks him and promises to leave soon. Chiyozuru is distressed at the idea she is leaving, and insists that she can stay forever if she wanted, that she didn't have to tell him or the servants anything she didn't want to say and that nothing was wrong with her being there. Still emotionless and stoic as before, she says that she is very grateful and would help around the mansion. Meanwhile, one of the two servants behind her, Gen'Ichi, gives her suspicious looks.
Later, Henpukumaru, in more feminine work clothes, it washing off vegetables outside at the well. She suddenly senses something and whirls around with the butcher's knife she is given to work with, mere inches away from the neck of the servant, Gen'Ichi. She quickly pulls back the knife and tells him he startled her, and Gen'Ichi tells her it confirmed his suspicions of her being a Tekki - an 'Iron Demon', and comments how she was able to detect his bloodlust and wanting to kill her. He lists their characteristics in comparison to her: cold as ice, cruel as beasts, and will accomplish any mission, and how it explained her limited emotions and her apparent depression although so young. One of the shinobi of the Tekki works for Chiyozuru's uncle, Tsuguhide, who would be next in line for the throne of the emperor if Chiyozuru were killed, and since the present emperor, Tadahide, isn't going to live much longer, he is strongly suspicious of her whereabouts and threatens to kill Henpukumaru for her reasons being at the mansion. Henpukumaru flatly states that she was right; she wouldn't be able to stay.
She tells Gen'Ichi that a mission of hers as a Tekki was to assassinate someone. As planned, she was going to kill the family and walk away, but a child was with them, and she couldn't kill him (it is implied in the imagery that it was Chiyozuru's family she had to kill under the Tekki's orders, which is backed up by the fact there are no parental figures around the mansion with Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru was spared by the Shinobi of the Tekki under the same scenario). She says it was merely a coincidence she was there, and she was not after Chiyozuru's life; she fled the organization and never wanted to kill again. Gen'Ichi says that's selfish - she took lives under the sake of mere missions. She responds by saying she was aware of such, and her analogy is since she lived through the darkness under the name 'bat', that she does not have the right to fly in blue skies as a bird in the light. Chiyozuru starts calling for Henpukumaru, and Gen'Ichi leaves her with a threat by saying he would let her stay only because Chiyozuru was fond of her and not to go back to the Tekki.
Chiyozuru discovered an injured bird and came to ask if Henpukumaru knew how to treat it. [Meanwhile, Gen'Ichi is a little aways, thrown off. He calls Henpukumaru a 'frightening girl' and that she didn't even give him time to draw his blade, along with "I can't believe I could still say 'I will kill you'!"]. Henpukumaru simply states that it would probably never fly again and that they should put it out of his misery. Chiyozuru protests, Henpukumaru tells him that if it can't fly it would just be killed. Chiyozuru takes back the injured bird and determinedly proclaims that he could save it, and shows her the wriggling bird and that it really wanted to fly. Henpukumaru, relating her situation with the birds, agrees to help and makes it a splint.
Time passes, and they release the bird, whom is successfully able to fly. Henpukumaru tells him it was because of him [and his detirmination]. Chiyozuru disagrees, and says that he helped a little, but it was because the bird really wanted to fly. Henpukumaru digests this and quietly repeats "He really....wanted to...."
Almost a full year passes, and it's winter. Chiyozuru insists on a snowball fight, which Henpukumaru obliges to. One of the servants remarks to Gen'Ichi that she had lightened up and was much more human, although Gen'Ichi replies that he wondered what it would take to turn her back to a beast. As Henpukumaru and Chiyozuru are making a snowman, Gen'Ichi gets an urgent message. Chiyozuru gives Henpukumaru one of his gloves and says brightly that they each get one as Henpukumaru looks at her glove curiously. Gen'Ichi receives news that the emperor passed away. He suspects assassins will appear that night, when snow would cover the tracks of blood, and to fortify the mansion.
Late in the night, Henpukumaru gets up and onto the porch where she observes the snowman, fondly recalling Chiyozuru giving her his glove with a smile and slight blush to her cheeks - her first sign of real emotion. Suddenly, Gen'Ichi is crawling towards her with a knife, having been stabbed. Henpukumaru cries out to him and tries to help him. He tells her, spitting up blood, that the Tekki were just outside of the mansion and that he had failed to stop them, and since there were so few skilled fighters they were an easy target. He starts to cough and lays completely back, and Henpukumaru realizes he will not make it from the looks of his punctuated lung. Gen'Ichi tells Henpukumaru she is the only one they can turn to - she must protect Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru is taken back. She looks shamefully downwards, and asks if he is telling her to return to her killer self. Gen'Ichi smiles weakly, and gives her his knife. He tells her he won't make it, and to kill him.
Henpukumaru looks at the knife with painfully, then silently understands she must do it. Gen'Ichi asks her to forgive him for making her break her promise not to kill [and that he was so suspicious of her], and begs her to protect Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru ends his life quickly and respectively. She remarks how clever he was in his way of turning her into a killer again.
The Tekki have reached the mansion, and have taken out many of the subordinates and guards. Chiyozuru, they observe, is in the main room. Henpukumaru appears and starts her killing streak again, taking nearly all the Tekki men out. The lead Shinobi is with one of his men and observes the scent of another beast. The other Tekki informs him that there are 55 workers and 9 ninja working at the mansion, plus one girl. The perks the lead's interest.
Henpukumaru finds and kills a Tekki closing in on the mansion. She starts to calculate the number of them left when Chiyozuru calls out to her from behind, having left the main room to find her. He sees her with the body of the Tekki and the bloodied knife, his face full of confusion and fear. Henpukumaru turns back to him with a painful, remorseful look when a knife flies through the air to strike Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru juts her arm straight out to take the blow without a second thought, and the lead Shinobi connects her with the 'one girl' in the mansion. Henpukumaru tells him to stay away as Chiyozuru is pulled away by a ninja, still calling out to her. She tells him to hurry and leave. Before she kills his right hand, the lead Shinobi warns him with a grin that she was the best he ever raised.
Henpukumaru insists, as does Chiyozuru, who will not leave without Henpukumaru. She screams at him to go, and her outburst stops Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru ceases with a final 'please', and the Shinobi leader lunges at Chiyozuru. Henpukumaru holds him off as Chiyozuru is finally carried away by horse, crying. The Shinobi leader tells her she has the face of a coward, and asks if it was Chiyozuru that changed her. She is less precise and ailing, and the Shinobi leader tries to urge her by telling her to 'become the beast' and 'show her fangs' and to let go of her emotions. He tells her that those of darkness can't live under the sun, and those who get confused by their emotions will get devoured by beasts, repeating her analogy at the beginning of the story. Henpukumaru deflects a killing blow with the loop of a metal chain, and begins to fight fiercely without hesitation. The Shinobi leader is pleased at Henpukumaru's sudden mercilessness, and just as she is about to strike a final blow, he slashes her across the arm and chest with his own knife. Henpukumaru merely slices his arm.
He tells her that she is not like how he raised her, and she agrees. She restates that she was taken in by him when bandits killed her family, and was thrown into his way of life. Even though they aren't blood related, she thinks of him as a father. The Shinobi leader is shocked, and he angrily snarls that the more pitiful she is, the angrier he was getting. He realizes there are three ninjas with arrows aimed right at him. He admits that it was because of her, a frail little girl that he failed, and that he is also pitiful and emotionally faltered. Three arrows pierce him, and as he dies he tells Henpukumaru to live as she wishes - she is no longer a Tekki.
Henpukumaru looks around miserably at the dead guards and her dead 'father', and is close to tears at the sight of the blood-stained snowman she and Chiyozuru built together. She gets up and starts to tredge through the snow, away from the mansion as the guards start to look for her. She tells herself 'Henpukumaru' is a fitting name for her, an 'ugly animal that can't pass for bird or beast'. She looks at her bloodstained hands, begins to laugh weakly, and claws her hands around her face and tears stream down her crumpled face.
The scene changes to five years later to a shop employee talking to a customer. She remarks that there are dangerous people, but it was very safe because of their feudal lord, to which the customer responds by asking if it was Lord Chiyozuru. The employee remarks how well-informed she is, and asks if she lived nearby. The customer is finally shown saying it had been five years since she last came, and it is a young woman with a hat casting over her face and a cane next to her. She says she's not staying for long, and that she is pleased that Lord Korehide (whom she almost calls Chiyozuru)'s rule is a good one, and tells the employee she was going to leave and is on a journey with no destination, and it doesn't matter where she goes. She starts to leave when Chiyozuru (Lord Korehide) happens to be casually walking through the street with two guards. The woman panics when a guard calls to her to take off her hat - she was being disrespectful to the Lord Korehide. The woman tells him she has a hideous face and it would be better if she didn't. Chiyozuru tells her to let her be, and decides to have tea and dumplings with the woman, who is dragged off against her will with him. She sits uncomfortably while Chiyozuru eats, and he asks what he thought of the place. She responds that everyone seemed lively and happy; the lord seems very well loved and it feels like a nice place to live. Chiyozuru says it is a relief - "Then that girl might come back." The woman glances upwards and Chiyozuru explains that there was a lone girl who saved him when he was about to be assassinated, and that he never got to see her since the event five years before. He tells the woman that he was saved by the girl he wanted to save, and it was hard when it came to be a fact he couldn't. He believed he was worthless, but wanted to be stronger. And because of the peace he achieved, he felt he had become a man with nothing for her to be embarrassed about. He begins to leave, but tells the woman to pass along a message to a woman with a bat-shaped birthmark on her travels.
"I, Chiyozuru, will be waiting for you to come back...let's walk under the sunlight together."
He then speaks directly to the woman when he says she shouldn't be afraid to stretch her arms, and if she desired it, blue skies were in her reach. A tear runs down over a bat-shaped tattoo on the woman's cheek, and she tells him that she will remember the message, and she would tell her.
Henpukumaru's facial expressions in the second half remind me very much of Hawkeye - that, and her eyes. Sorta her hair too. But her overall personality reminds me of the quiet, emotionless side of RanFan. I think this connects in a lot of ways to Royai and the other pairings in FMA, but I'm tired. LAWL
I'm just saying that while it may not be in the way we want, I strongly believe we will get closure on their relationship. Whether they both die or one gets crippled or whatever happens, it will be clarified. And most likely, we will be someone satisfied.
p.S - YES BIG POST. I'm really sorry! I spent like two hours writing this all, and there are a lot of little details and things in Souten no Koumori that I really wanted to identify. I'll see if I can move the two overviews somewhere else if its too big.